Say what you will about the culture or worthiness of visiting various comic-cons across the country, but no one can deny that they are awesome places for getting the inside scoop. And, sometimes, that scoop involves answering a question you never would have even thought to ask. The Firefly reunion at New York Comic-Con over the weekend provided much behind the scenes info to the assembled crowd, including a bit about how one adorable space mechanic should have been added to the rag-tag crew’s death toll.
Spoilers ahead, obviously. You have been warned!
Firefly stars Nathan Fillion (Mal), Gina Torres (Zoë), Alan Tudyk (Wash) and Jewel Staite (Kaylee) made an eagerly awaited appearance at the convention to discuss the long-canceled but still much beloved show and its movie sequel Serenity. Vulture reported on the event, and Fillion, it would seem, believes that one more death in the movie would have raised the stakes for the crew even more. After revealing that he thought Kaylee should have bit the dust along with Wash and Shepherd Book (Ron Glass), Staite counters by saying that Kaylee’s death would be "like drowning puppies." And that idea suits Fillion just fine.
That's why it would be better! It would be like, Wow, I can't believe it. It would be so emotional. If Malcolm Reynolds died, you'd think, Well, he was bound to. But Kaylee?! If they did that, you'd be like bawling!
Well, Nathan Fillion certainly has that right. Kaylee was one of the most cherished of the nine main characters that populated Firefly and its big screen sequel Serenity with quipping, fighting and Chinese cursing futuristic folk. The story focused on the adventures of a renegade spaceship crew 500 years in the future, and their four possibly not-totally-above-board passengers. The group traverses the galaxy and is constantly trying to score as smugglers and cargo runners in the face of warring factions and the Alliance agents who are out to capture them.
Sci-fi lovers fell for the future, wild-west feeling of the show and were glued to the screen because of the camaraderie of the weird cast of characters. The Joss Whedon-created television series was infamously mishandled by the network and not given much of a chance to hold on to the growing group of rabid followers. Shortly after being cancelled by Fox, calls went up across the fandom for a movie to answer all the unanswered questions and give the show’s supporters some much-needed closure. The film opened to positive reviews and even managed the number two spot on its opening weekend, but really began to make money when it was released on DVD.
As a fan of the show and the movie, I can tell you I was torn apart when Book and, especially, Wash were no more. In fact, Wash’s death is one of the reasons I can’t bear to watch the film again or read any of the Serenity comics that have continued the story off screen. Nathan Fillion is, indeed, correct that Kaylee’s death would have made a massive impact. But I doubt that her demise, combined with the others, would have endeared the series to fans. The Firefly universe without Kaylee’s impossibly sunny disposition just isn’t as much Gorram fun to be a part of.