A notorious gossip started by Kate Kotler in a “Bleeding Cool” article (based on a random one liner during comic con 10th anniversary press conference) has it that Joss Whedon and The Science Channel’s Debbie Myers are planning to reboot “Firefly” (with original cast at that) in the near future. I decided that instead of spending 10 minutes on sending my linguistic abilities into overdrive (if you read any of the previous rants of mine you probably quickly discovered I’m a foreigner myself, and as such English is not my first language) on disparaging investigative skills of the Bleeding Cool columnist without making swear word filter in google search engine blush tomato red, I’d rather explore the actual possibility of such reboot happening.
Firefly is one of the best examples of an internet spawned post-mortem legend. When the original broadcast started on Fox in September 2002, everything that could go wrong, had go wrong. It was given the “Friday night death slot”, which is traditionally impossible to defend in ratings. It then aired with a different pilot than writers intended (“The Train Job” instead of two hour “Serenity”). The Pilot was a bit of a train wreck in ratings, Nielsen given it 4.1/8. Which to all of us outside of US newspeak means that only approximately 4.3 million viewers out of 105.5 million households that owned TV in US at the time had their sets tuned to Firefly premiere. And at the time it had absolutely nothing to compete with. The series broadcasted on Fox at 8:00/07:00c before “John Doe” . The only scheduled scripted programming in its time slot was Providence and Sabrina The Teenage Witch. “John Doe”, a show with Dominic Purcell (“Prison Break”) which noone remembers now, had at least 2 million plus more viewers every time (which also means 2 million people simply didn’t bother turning their TV on to Fox an hour before favorite show in 9 o clock slot on Friday, circa autumn 2002) while “Providence” would regularly attract twice as many viewers as “Firefly” ever reached.