It’s now 24 hours since I saw Serenity and I’m past the initial excitement and dorky feeling of “OMG, that was like so cool.” I have this problem of clearly explaining why I love a particular thing right after I’ve seen it and it usually comes from there being so much about the particular thing that I love. So in an effort to explain to myself and to Creed (who still doesn’t understand why I’m watching a movie about cowboys in space) I’m going to break it down.
1) I’m a sucker for romance. But it has to be particularly well written romance of the Pride and Prejudice persuasion. Joss Whedon knows how to pull the heart strings and he did so perfectly with Serenity. There is genuine care for Mal of his crew, Zoe’s for Wash, and Simon’s for River but it’s those heartbreaking and wonderfully excruciating moments when you see Mal trying to not show that he likes/loves Inara. Or that Kaylee and Simon probably would hit it off so perfectly if given the chance. And that’s the part I love. Call me a masochist, but I’m a sucker for moments where Joss writes two people who should so be together but are kept separated for ridiculous reasons. (And god he’s a master at it. To this day I am BALLING in complete tears when Buffy slams the sword into Angel sending him into the Hellmouth even though they were meant to be with each other).
2) The key character is a strong woman. In fact, all the women in Joss’ shows are strong. (Which makes it perfect that he’s going to write/direct Wonder Woman –my absolute favorite comic and the reason I dressed up as a Wonder Woman for 5 years in a row). And they’re not unreachable, butchy strong like GI Jane. Zoe can be both sweet and tender when she’s with her husband and can carry a rifle and take someone down with the best of them.
3) Joss is a genuinely a great writer. Yeah it’s dorky humor but it’s earnest and unpretentious. When you see Mr. Universe getting married to his Bride Bot in a Jewish ceremony….come on. That’s funny. He writes characters that have layers and they become almost like people you know. And because of that you want to know what happens next, will they fall in love, will they find true happiness.
Call it my sci-fi soap opera. That’s fine. I will continue to spend my money on anything Joss Whedon writes without any regrets whatsoever.