On Simon's birthday, Serenity's engine stops turning and an explosion knocks out auxiliary life support, severely wounding Zoe. With few options, Mal orders the rest of the crew off the ship, but he stays behind hoping for a miracle. The story is told in multiple time frames shifting from Mal's time alone on the ship to the events prior to the crew's departure. Flashbacks to Mal's initial meetings with many of his crew members are also a part of the narrative, showing how and why Mal and Zoe decided to buy the old Firefly-class ship, as well as revealing it wasn't love-at-first-sight for Zoe and Wash when he was hired as the Serenity's pilot, as well as how Inara charmed her way into letting Mal rent out one of the Serenity's shuttles for herself, how Mal met the mechanic/engineer Kaylee in a compromising position, and how the crew met Jayne who was an tough, but dumb, interplanetary bandit. Written by
Did You Know?
' character spends most of this episode unconscious in the ship's medical bay, partly because Torres was absent for part of the shoot. She was on her honeymoon with husband Laurence Fishburne
. See more
The leather rope necklace that Zoe wears is a symbol of her commitment to Wash (like a wedding ring), but in the flashback scenes in this episode where Zoe and Wash first meet and when Mal and Zoe first enter Serenity, she is wearing the necklace. (However, the information of the commitment symbolism comes from the costume designer on the DVD commentary for the episode "Shindig" and might not be canon as created by Joss Whedon
or the other writers. Therefore this may not be a true continuity error if the symbolism exists only in the designer's concept.) See more
Mal, you don't have to die alone.
Everybody dies alone.
Referenced in Firefly: Ariel
The Ballad of Serenity (Instrumental)
Written by Joss Whedon
Performed by Sonny Rhodes See more