The Reduced SFX Company present Firefly and Serenity in one five-minute script. Warning: contains spoilers for both the series and the movie!

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A space Western in which a group of weird-talkin’ oddballs make the audience fall in love with them before getting shot and killed by an evil gunslinger called Fox. Yeehaw!


We meet space cowboy CAPTAIN MAL REYNOLDS and his spaceship SERENITY .

THE AUDIENCE: Why is the series called Firefly if your ship is actually named Serenity?
REYNOLDS: Because it’s a Firefly-class spaceship, folks.
THE AUDIENCE: But that’s really stupid! We’re going to keep calling it Firefly! Whoa, and how tight are your pants right now?
REYNOLDS: Don’t worry, I remove them occasionally and show my nekkid buttcheeks.
THE AUDIENCE: We can live with that.

The other occupants of the FIREFLY ... sorry, SERENITY are introduced. First there is INARA SERRA , who is a WHORE .

INARA: I prefer the term “Companion’.
REYNOLDS: I love you, but I’m too ornery and proud to tell you.
INARA: Pardon?
REYNOLDS: Nothing.
INARA: I really, really fancy you in those tight pants.
INARA: Nothing.

Then there is ZOE WASHBURNE , who is very hot, and her husband WASH , who likes DINOSAURS .

WASH: I still can’t believe I was lucky enough to bag myself a wife as hot as you.
ZOE: Despite being a hard-ass soldier-type who could kill a ninja with her little finger, I am perfectly happy to love a grown man who plays with plastic dinosaurs.
WASH: [Plays with dinosaurs] Rraw! Grrr!
ZOE: Although I do wish you wore tighter pants.


The FIREFLY. .. sorry, SERENITY breaks down. She does this A LOT because she is a bit rubbish, but everybody loves her anyway because she has been ANTHROPOMORPHISED . Her engineer is KAYLEE FRYE , who is girly and adorable and likes strawberries.

REYNOLDS: Kaylee! Fix my gorram boat!
KAYLEE: [Adorably] Yes, cap’n!
REYNOLDS: And stop bein’ so gorram girly and adorable because nobody will believe you’re really an engineer!
KAYLEE: [Adorably] Sure, cap’n!
REYNOLDS: And the next time you eat a very expensive strawberry, try not to look as though you’re fixin’ to fornicate with it like a cheap, low-down whore!
INARA SERRA: [Overhearing] I am NOT a whore, I am a Companion!
THE AUDIENCE: Isn’t that a little morally dubious?
INARA: If you think I’m bad, wait till you get a load of the Dolls in Dollhouse . At least I wear classier clothes.


The ship lands on a FRONTIER-STYLE WILD-WEST PLANET . They do business with SHADY CHARACTERS and pick up some new passengers. One of them is a priest named SHEPHERD BOOK , who is noble, has SCARY HAIR and a SECRET PAST we will never learn about. This is ANNOYING . JAYNE COBB is a mercenary who growls a lot and is VERY HARD , possibly to make up for the fact he has a GIRL’S NAME . And then there is SIMON TAM .

SIMON: Hello! Please could I book passage on your ship with my mysterious large box?
REYNOLDS: Sure! We need a doctor on board because people get shot all the gorram time.
SIMON: Great! Well, don’t mind me, I’ll just keep myself to myself. By the way, don’t go near my mysterious large box.

KAYLEE and SIMON meet.

KAYLEE: [Adorably] Well, ain’t this just dandy? I was just thinkin’ that I needed somebody to crush on because I ain’t had nowt twixt my nethers weren’t run on batteries for a long time.
JAYNE: ...I’ll be in my bunk.
THE AUDIENCE: Wow, that’s such a funny line we’re going to use it in everyday life as much as humanly possible, even though we don’t even have bunks!


SIMON’S MYSTERIOUS LARGE BOX turns out to contain a WOMAN .

REYNOLDS: You filthy pervert!
SIMON: She’s my sister! Please help us escape the Evil Government Operatives who are chasing us!
RIVER TAM: [Crazily] Two by two, hands of blue...
REYNOLDS: No! Wait, yes. Hang on... no! I don’t want trouble on my boat! Except I can’t just airlock you... but no, I don’t need the grief, go away! But that would make me evil, and I’m a Big Damn Hero... So perhaps you can stay. Yeah, alright, stay. I think.
SIMON: Thank you! I promise to fix you up the next time you get shot, which will probably be in about, ooh, five minutes.
RIVER: [Crazily] I can kill you with my brain.
REYNOLDS: Who do you think you are, the gorram Terminator?


The crew of the FIREFLY ... dammit, SERENITY have many adventures on dusty FRONTIER-STYLE WILD-WEST PLANETS . RIVER continues to be CRAZY , SIMON and KAYLEE are too bashful (him) and adorable (her) to act upon their feelings for each other and REYNOLDS continues to fall in love with INARA even though she is a WHORE .

INARA: That’s Companion to you!
JAYNE: Do you have the address of that Dollhouse place? I do love me some whores...

Meanwhile, EVIL GOVERNMENT OPERATIVES hunt them down, but they are nowhere near as SCARY as EVIL GUNSLINGER FOX .

EVIL GUNSLINGER FOX : This stupid space-cowboy series ain’t gettin’ no ratings! We should put it out of its misery!
REYNOLDS: Have you not noticed how tight my pants are? Where will I ever be able to wear pants this tight ever again? (opens in new tab)

But it is TOO LATE . At high noon, EVIL GUNSLINGER FOX quick-draws its guns and FIREFLY is KILLED .

REYNOLDS: Qingwa cao de liumang!
REYNOLDS: American ain’t the only language of the future, y’know.


EVIL GUNSLINGER FOX has a change of heart.
EVIL GUNSLINGER FOX: You seem to be surprisingly popular with DVD-owning folk. Perhaps we were a tad hasty. Would you like to come back for a movie?
REYNOLDS: Can we name it after my boat so people don’t mix ’em up any more? Then I’m in!
JOSS WHEDON: Hmm, we need to do some ante-upping and make this really dramatic.
WASH: Oh God, oh God, we’re all going to die.
ZOE: I’d never let you leaf me, don’t worry.
WASH: I love a good leaf pun. Except, uh, wait a minute... [Dies]

The MOVIE makes THE TV SHOW AUDIENCE happy, but nobody else bothers with it.

EVIL GUNSLINGER FOX: So long, suckers.
REYNOLDS: [Distraught] Why can I never win a battle?
ZOE: It’s okay, sir. At least you have tight pants.


Script by Jayne Nelson

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Dave Golder
Freelance Writer

Dave is a TV and film journalist who specializes in the science fiction and fantasy genres. He's written books about film posters and post-apocalypses, alongside writing for SFX Magazine for many years.