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Serenity: Leaves On the Wind #1 Promises an Exciting New Era for Beloved Franchise

Serenity: Leaves On the Wind #1 Promises an Exciting New Era for Beloved Franchise

serenity issue 1 cover

Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #1 (of 6)
Written by Zack Whedon
Pencils by Georges Jeanty
Inks by Karl Story
Colours by Laura Martin
Letters by Michael Heisler
Based on the Television Series Created by Joss Whedon
Published by Dark Horse Comics

There are only two known truths in the entire universe: 1, that a series created by Joss Whedon will more than likely suffer cancellation (or get shot down before it’s even made!), and 2, that the cancelled series will live on to some degree in comics. With the live-action adventures of Buffy and Angel most certainly dead, their transition to comics to tell the later instalments was only a logical move by Whedon. Firefly/Serenity was a different situation altogether. Axed after less than one full season, Joss was able to bring back the crew for one more adventure, this one released in cinemas. Other than the dismal box office reception of Serenity, there was no guaranteed certainty that this television-and-movie series was officially dead. The stars aligned once to make the impossible possible, so perhaps a Serenity 2 was just one more miracle away. Browncoats didn’t hold their breath, but it always remained a what-if in the back of their minds. But as more years pass, and the inferior Marvel Cinematic Universe eats up more and more of Joss Whedon’s time, it looks now as if the adventures of the Serenity crew will never continue in live-action. It’s been nine years since Serenity, and it looks like Whedon has too given up on hope on another film. So here’s your long awaited sequel, in comic form!

There have been previous Serenity miniseries comics, most notably Those Left Behind and Better Days. Both three-issue stories, they chronicle the events after Firefly and before the Serenity film. They’re not great comics, due to how unimportant and irrelevant their stories feel. If Serenity started off at a certain point, then it started off at that point for a good storytelling reason. It makes sense that any bridge gaping narrative will feel like filler, otherwise that important info would have been included in the film.

serenity issue 1 panelLeaves on the Wind picks up roughly nine months after the events of the film, and a lot has certainly changed aboard the Serenity. As now-sane River says in this issue, “[the] ship’s so quiet these days”. There’s a very different atmosphere here than before, and it’s a jarring change. Wash is dead. Book is dead. Jayne quit, and left the ship. Zoe is pregnant with Wash’s baby. Mal and Inara, and Simon and Kaylee are romantically involved. Oh, and River is piloting the ship. It’s a whole lot to take in, and the issue doesn’t even feature the ship or the main cast until 10 pages in. The first half of the issue cleverly builds upon the hype of the infamous Serenity, discussing its importance and hinting at the story that is about to unfold. It is refreshingly patient storytelling, previously unseen in Serenity comics. With 6 issues, or 132 pages, Leaves on the Wind is allowed a lot more pages to tell a story than any previous comic in this universe, and without the constraints of simply having to bridge a narrative from Point A to an already established Point B, this story is allowed to go anywhere. For the first time in 9 years, this universe is allowed to go in new directions, tell new stories, create new character developments.

The first issue of this miniseries is a promising introduction to the new era of Serenity. As a story, there is not a lot particularly memorable about this issue, if only because there is so much to catch the audience up on first before it is even possible to move forward with the plot. The lives of this crew has changed a lot in just under a year, and #1 is a safe yet pleasing re-introduction to this world. Hopefully the remainder of this series lives up to the name Serenity and becomes the starting point of more comic miniseries in the future.

On a side-note, the fabulous Buffy Season 8 and 9 artist Georges Jeanty has stepped down from that universe (for the time being) to do the drawings on this series. This is his first time professionally drawing these characters, and it’s a fairly impressive debut. Faces look off in occasional panels, just as they did in his early issues on Buffy. He’ll probably improve with each succeeding issue.

[wpchatai]