Niska catches up with the Serenity crew.


(as James Contner)


(created by),

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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
John Dunn ...
Viktor (as Michael A. Bentt)
Vanilla Husband (scenes deleted)


Wash is jealous of the bond between Zoe and Mal and demands to go with Mal to trade the cargo of medical supplies with locals. However Niska's men capture and bring them on board. Niska tortures them both while Zoe collects money from the crew to pay a ransom for them. However Niska releases only Wash and takes Mal's ear to give to Zoe. But the Serenity's crew decides to fight to bring their captain back. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

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Release Date:

6 December 2002 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


In the opening scene, where Simon and Book are discussing the operations performed on River, Simon is looking at a computer display of River's brain. The text that scans past underneath the brain model is lines of Javascript code from a web page. See more »


Niska's henchman is shown cutting off Mal's left ear. However, when the 'pet' device is applied to Mal, he is shown with a bloody wound instead of a right ear. See more »


[Mal is struggling with a guy who spent several hours torturing him; Jayne aims a gun at the torturer]
Zoë: Jayne. This is something the captain has to do for himself.
Mal: No. No, it's not!
Zoë: Oh!
[Jayne, Zoë and Wash shoot]
See more »


References Star Trek: Voyager (1995) See more »


The Ballad of Serenity
Written by Joss Whedon
Performed by Sonny Rhodes
See more »

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User Reviews

Character studies like this one are why this show is so damn good.
15 September 2015 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

With its harsh subject matter, it always surprises me (even just a little) that "War Stories" follows so soon after "Out of Gas". But it's a phenomenal character piece, this time centering on the Mal-Zoe-Wash triangle. And I like that, no matter what goes down here, it's really about them. What's great is that Alan Tudyk gets his time to really shine outside of his usual one-liner confines. Wash totally mans right up when the chips are down and proves his mettle among his more battle-worn peers. The torture scenes in this episode are rough, but also deeply rewarding in the end.

8/10 Also, we already know this, but Zoe's an incontrovertible badass.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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