Well, syrinxkat gave me the perfect opportunity when she offered to send me a graphic novel which bridges the gap between the series and the film. So, last night, that's how I spent my evening.
The graphic novel is titled "Serenity: Those Left Behind," and it's a beautiful book - the artwork is gorgeous, and the storyline is interesting. The trouble I have with graphic novels (and probably the reason I've not read many) is that they're too short! Not as much dialogue and character development as I'd like to have had, although I will say that quite a lot of character development can be done visually. (Like the moment Book and Mal have together; I won't say what, since it's spoilerish, I guess, but it's fantastic, and if you've already read this book, you'll know which moment I mean). :D Plus, it's just wonderful to get *anything* extra in this amazing world Whedon created. I can easily see how this bit of story could have become an hour-long episode (maybe more than one), and I wishwishwish the show hadn't been cancelled!
In any case, I really enjoyed this, even if it did seem short. Thanks, K, for sharing it with me!
As for the film, I'll put the rest of this behind a cut, for SPOILERS (not that there's anyone out there interested who hasn't already seen it, but whatever. :D).
What a fantastic film, I laughed, I cried (sometimes in almost the same breath - even while sobbing about Wash, Jayne was cracking me up - the line where he says something about how he really hopes that at least he survives). It was a satisfying conclusion to the story arc of the series. The Operative was suitably creepy, and yet not the stereotypical character who might have been brought into this role. Very cool. And, of course, all the beloved folks from "Firefly" were awesome. As was the case with the series, I love the moral issues that are tossed about - Mal pushing that guy off the vehicle, for example. I was heartbroken, too, though. It was bad enough when Book died, but that I could bear. Not Wash. Partly because he was so funny and sweet and one of the genuinely nicest people in the series, but OMG to imagine life for Zoe afterward? I sobbed somewhat hysterically on and off through the rest of the film, alternating between shock, horror, and denial. Seriously, after the film was over I had to just sit for a while because I felt really awful. Physically, awful. Had to remind myself to get a grip - FICTIONAL GUY died, Wendy. FICTIONAL. :D :D :D
I will say that River's complete ASS-KICKING of the Reavers almost made up for it. It's funny, because when she jumped out of the "safe" room into the fray, I had a moment, of "OMG NOT RIVER, TOO," but then I had to let that go. I was too sad about Wash to be sad about another character as well. But then when the doors opened and there she was . . . OH YEAH!!!!!!!
A couple of asides. I also watched some of the special features, and the interview with Whedon telling how the film came about - *OMG LOVES THIS FANDOM*! I'm just sad that I wasn't part of that; if I'd known about the series while it was airing (and afterward), I'd have totally gotten on board with all this. As it is, I'm so grateful to the fans who were involved (and some of you are reading this), and helped make this AWESOME movie a reality.
Also, I ended up having dreams about the film last night. The sort of dreams that brought me back awake repeatedly, so it almost feels like I didn't really sleep much last night. I don't remember much about them, only that there was a lot of action, and a lot of ammunition was gone through. :D
Oh! And after watching the film, I had to go back to the graphic novel and have a peek at the penultimate page . . . yep, that's him. He's wearing the sword. *swoons from the coolness of it*
Okay, so this film kicked ass, and I'm really glad I finally found the right time to sit down and watch it, undisturbed, to eat my popcorn (microwave, but with real extra melted butter), and cry my eyes out.