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August 14 2007

Universal is Actually Advertising the Serenity Collector's Edition. "Well, at least they're doing banners."

http://www.herosite.net/

Clicking on the banner goes to http://www.serenitymovie.com/

Whoo-hoo! SOULOFSERENITY found this. Also Amazon sent out an email to "customers who have purchased or rated Firefly - The Complete Series". I got one too! Here is the pic of it Amazon email to it's Firefly customers.

Was there some sort of a consensus before hand that Universal wouldn't be advertising this?
Simon, some people have decided that telling Uni how to do their job is desperately needed. I've seen at least one request for folks to send emails to Uni begging them to advertise the CE. I think that totally sends the wrong message, but what do I know?
I think people just weren't seeing it advertised and were surprised is all... I don't think anyone is trying to tell them how to do their jobs really. They're all just excited and nervous since this is the last chance at getting more Firefly/Serenity (even as slim a chance as it is)

I could be wrong of course, they could just be bored and think telling professionals how to do their jobs is just darn fun ;)
Uni spending vast amounts of money on advertising would be counter productive. Anything they get from the collectors edition at this point will be money for the gravy train.
I'm interpreting this post as noting where and how Uni is advertising the CE and being very happy that they are.
I've got no problem with snark aimed at Universal, because I'm of the opinion that they deserve it.

But sweet banner.
I was just over at my favorite Heroes forum and ran across both the small and large banners. Nice to see them someplace where they might actually drum up interest, but it made me a little woozy for some reason. I don't think I can handle so much Serenity in my Heroes...
I've actually seen a Serenity ad in several different comic books recently--a full-pager shared with a Special Edition of Flash Gordon (Flash! Aaaahaaaah! Savior of the universe!)
"He who has a thing to sell
should never whisper in a well.

The one who's going to make the dollars
is the one who stands on a roof and hollers."

Heh. I'm quoting a matchbook cover from the 'sixties.
Simon, some people have decided that telling Uni how to do their job is desperately needed. I've seen at least one request for folks to send emails to Uni begging them to advertise the CE. I think that totally sends the wrong message, but what do I know?


This got me thinking which is never a good sign as it means I'm going to write more than two sentences than I usually do in a comment.

There's been academic critiques of the Buffy fandom in the past but has there ever been a serious look at the Firefly fandom (or Browncoats if you prefer that term)?

Studies of fandoms always interest me and I'm really tired (and bored) of seeing the Firefly fandom painted in broad strokes in articles. Cause said articles tend to go for one of two approaches: "they are mighty and achieved the impossible" or "they are really annoying". Both approaches are incredibly bland and lazy and just make the fandom out to be a caricature of itself. It's full of passionate and intelligent people and they deserve something a lot better than that.

So if there was a proper study of the fandom, I'd like to see it address the following points/questions.

1) What's the make-up of the fandom? Is there a particular age group or gender that predominates the fandom?
2) How does the fandom differentiate from the Buffyverse fandom?
3) Does it have the same infighting and factionalism that affects other fandoms or is it more cohesive as a whole?
4) How similar is it to the Star Wars or Star Trek fandoms?
5) What's the underlying philospohy of the fandom?
6) Old fans versus new fans. How do these two groups accomodate each other?
7) What were the major growth spurts of the fandom and will it maintain growth in the near and indeed distant future?
8) Is slash more accepted or less accepted in the fandom compared to other fandoms?
9) How is Joss viewed? Reverently or critically? And is this view different from the perceptions of Joss in the Buffy and Angel fandoms.
10) How do fans think they are percieved by outsiders?

And last and most importantly.

11) What makes a person a Firefly fan?

There's other points but they're at the back of my mind and I've had nowhere enough coffee and cigarettes to try and fish them out.
Yeah theres a banner ad on The Fuselage.

1) What's the make-up of the fandom? Is there a particular age group or gender that predominates the fandom?


It's slightly male bias. Although the more rabbid elements are female. That's from surveying the fandom at one point.

2) How does the fandom differentiate from the Buffyverse fandom?

It tends to be hopelessly optimistic. There's much more of a right wing and Christian element in Firefly fandom, also, compared to Buffyverse. The thematic element of SERENITY that Mal should find something to believe in -- it doesn't matter what, and how crazy it may be -- is suitably amusing.

3) Does it have the same infighting and factionalism that affects other fandoms or is it more cohesive as a whole?

Far, far more cohesive. That's because -- in my opinion -- the show wasn't on the air long enough for people to get pissed about things. The only 'major' character event in Fireflyverse was Wash dying, and that caused factions, but that's very little compared to 11 years of BuffyAngelVerse story.

4) How similar is it to the Star Wars or Star Trek fandoms?

Pass.

5) What's the underlying philospohy of the fandom?

From experience - take my love, take my land, take me where I cannot stand. I don't care, you can't take my fandom from me.

6) Old fans versus new fans. How do these two groups accomodate each other?

Pretty well. The older fans (in terms of length of time since they saw the show) tend to be more cynical.

7) What were the major growth spurts of the fandom and will it maintain growth in the near and indeed distant future?

The major growth spurts are when Joss says something vaguely positive, and when Universal or FOX advertise the show or movie. Also, I was in town on Sunday, and I passed somebody in a Blue Sun shirt. Which is a pretty funny sign, I think.

8) Is slash more accepted or less accepted in the fandom compared to other fandoms?

Pass.

9) How is Joss viewed? Reverently or critically? And is this view different from the perceptions of Joss in the Buffy and Angel fandoms.

A surprising amount of fans -- the majority, from my observation -- believe Firefly is dead because Joss can't be fucked to make any more.

10) How do fans think they are percieved by outsiders?

Trekkies, who named themselves after nazi's. Or, obsessive.

11) What makes a person a Firefly fan?

They like the show. What makes a person a Browncoat? I think it's a personal definition. To me, it's being able to exist in a community and be myself in the process. Or, the right to be wrong. There's a lot said by fellow browncoats I don't agree with, but that helps keep it interesting.

[ edited by gossi on 2007-08-14 13:06 ]
Simon raises several valid points, which is an understatement, but I had no other way to start the post, without going to the River is made of Chocolate vein of thought.

My interest on the relationship between Joss' creations different fandoms have grown in recent months. I figured a few weeks ago, that no matter how much I consider myself a fan of everything Joss, I think I am more a Buffy fan, or like it a little better than the rest. I don't know if I'm actually using the right words to express these feelings. But more than when outsiders (general outsiders, outsiders from other non-Joss fandoms) are condescending towards Buffy, I'm even more offended (which might be a too strong word for this, but is the closest I could think about), when it comes from other Joss fandoms. In my ideal fantasy, Joss fans are all happy with everything Joss, but I know it doesn't happen. And some of the potential internal animosity bothers me.

I wonder if these questions or wonders are raised by the rest of the fandom.
All good questions, Simon. I'd like to know the answers too.
I actually expected no advertising of whatsoever, and just expected fans to tell other fans and that will be the market, I am personally glad there is some advertising. And I don't think there is anything wrong with sending emails to Universal about asking for advertising...I mean I wouldn't take it personally if I got those emails, it just means that fans are really excited and anxious which is understandable(well to some people).

Anyways as some people noted on other forums, there shoud be SOME advertising(obviously not on the order of a new movie coming out) and its good that there is, because obviously not every fan frequents the 'verse related boards and may not know that there is a collectors edition.
4) How similar is it to the Star Wars or Star Trek fandoms?

I've seen some Mal's (costumed folk) and at least one Kaylie at cons, but so far no Alliance soldiers or Reavers. While you do see stormtroopers and Klingons. That could be just because it's newer or because there's less obsessiveness about making the whole universe "real."
You want soldiers? You got 'em (well the Independents anyhow, no Alliance lot yet).

Link:
The 76th is marching as a unit of the Independents.
Their costumes are Independent, Browncoat-like...much like Mal and Zoe in the Serenity pilot.

I did see a man dressed up as Alliance military at B3. Wish I had a link to share... perhaps someone got a picture?

[ edited by FollowMal on 2007-08-14 15:44 ]
Dressed up as a lion?
6) Old fans versus new fans. How do these two groups accomodate each other?
I think this is what really sets Browncoats apart...we're so desperate to get everyone to love Firefly that it really doesn't matter if you were "there from the beginning". A couple years ago at Wondercon I wandered over to the California Browncoats table, already a fan but not particularly active in any kind of organized way. I started chatting with one of the gals, and I will never forget what she said to me: "We're Browncoats. We're like family that just hasn't met before." As an outsider to that particular group of people in the fandom, it made me feel warm fuzzies. The relatively low level of elitism (especially compared to Star Trek or Star Wars fans) is refreshing, and my favorite part of being a Browncoat.

To be fair, I haven't noticed much elitism with Buffy/Angel fans either, but I haven't spent much time with them in large numbers.
Dressed up as a lion?

Does that seem right to you?
I send an email to Universal telling them that Nathan Fillion is going to be on One Life to Live Soap Opera 8/16/07 and 8/17/07 for the 9,999 and 10,000 episode. And that it might be a good ad opportunity.

I thought Universal would not advertise anywhere at all when there wasn't even an ad on the Firefly marathon on Friday. I thought maybe they had no ad budget for the Serenity Collector's Edition. So I was happy the banner showed up. People might recognize the ship. Might not recognize it and click on the link and find out.

Same with the Amazon mass email.
I've seen a comic book ad for the special edition too, so I never thought that Universal was underexposing the new release. I don't think they're obligated to advertise my favourite movies and DVDs more than they would anything else. It's nice when it happens though.
Simon, I would try to answer your questions, but my replies would be all bitter and cynical. I pretty much agree with Gossi's answers except for number 9. I think most Browncoats think Joss walks on water beyond all reason. To the point that they really don't acknowledge the contribution of others to the show (coughtimminearcough).
I think some people assume that advertising is easy or that wherever Firefly pops up, there shall Universal be also, with banners and TV spots. It certainly isn't simple, and it involves money, which as we know, can be the bottom line for a lot of things. I wasn't sure that Serenity CE was going to be advertised in a lot of places, but at the same time, I wasn't expecting a lot because there simply does not seem to be a large enough reason. the built in audience already has several copies of Serenity already. We're a sure bet. Everyone else? Probably not.

1) What's the make-up of the fandom? Is there a particular age group or gender that predominates the fandom?

Male bias obviously (fanboy vs. fangirl) but there is a very strong female contingent and I think the Whedon fandom is one of the more unique ones in that you certainly see the female presence.

2) How does the fandom differentiate from the Buffyverse fandom?

Buffyverse seems to have very universal themes, but it strikes at people at very different stages in life. I think Buffy appeals to the high schooler in all of us, or the teen in us who remembers high school horrors and can relate. I know certainly I grew up with Buffy during high school. But Firefly gives us a theme of adulthood, striking out on your own, finding a place in the universe for yourself without the shelter and comfort of home, going out into the black, so to speak. I think this is one of the many reasons why Firefly fans who discovered Joss through Firefly may not resonate so much with Buffy, or vice versa. But I know plenty of people who love both, like I do.

3) Does it have the same infighting and factionalism that affects other fandoms or is it more cohesive as a whole?

It seems to be more cohesive simply because in this case, EVERYONE was equally downtrodden. This was not a hit, this did not get a chance. There was no room to take it for granted. In that sense, there is less factionalism, less infighting. But I think when Serenity came along, the factionalism and infighting certainly increased, because suddenly there was some hope. There was a physical entity to latch onto, to take possession.

4) How similar is it to the Star Wars or Star Trek fandoms?

Similar in that it is very devout.

5) What's the underlying philospohy of the fandom?

I think for Firefly, certainly kindness and promotion of charity and equality. Firefly the show represents many characters who are on the edge, who don't have the comforts of life that the Alliance has. In this sense, the fandom has certainly taken up the cause of those who are equally downtrodden, the ignored and the unwanted, by working with Equality Now.

6) Old fans versus new fans. How do these two groups accomodate each other?

I think the old fans seem to stick to their comforts, and the new fans either integrate well or find their own place and new boards, chats and discussion forums begin.

7) What were the major growth spurts of the fandom and will it maintain growth in the near and indeed distant future?

I think Firefly will. Buffy certainly has kept up much of its longevity, but that is very much because of the comics. Firefly, I think, has more longevity because there is a movie and it has accomplished more on a larger scale.

8) Is slash more accepted or less accepted in the fandom compared to other fandoms?

I think it is fairly equal. I personally don't like slash, and don't read it, but I notice it a lot.

9) How is Joss viewed? Reverently or critically? And is this view different from the perceptions of Joss in the Buffy and Angel fandoms.

Reverently to the fans, not as someone who can do no wrong, but knows how to do things right. His mistakes have not been true mistakes in that he has just done a bad job - the business is so that sometimes, other people take control and things end up going badly, or in a direction you don't want. Being familiar with old and new Whedon fandoms, I can say that the older fandoms (Buffy, Angel) are somewhat more critical of Joss' work, perhaps due to some possessiveness, as that was Joss' first television series, and it was his "first child."

10) How do fans think they are percieved by outsiders?

We're the new trekkies :)

11) What makes a person a Firefly fan?

One simply has to enjoy the show, enjoy its intricacies, appreciate it for the talent and worth and richness it brings to television. Being a fan isn't "I like it," it's understanding it, appreciating the inherant artistic merit and being able to give it its due, and defend it when necessary in a reasonable and logical way.
I went to the Hero's site but I'm just seeing an ad for Dirty Jobs. Refresh, refresh, still no Serenity. But I'll take all your words for it that it's shiny.
I think most Browncoats think Joss walks on water beyond all reason. To the point that they really don't acknowledge the contribution of others to the show (coughtimminearcough).

Oh, I also agree, but I certainly think there's also a LOT of fans who _also_ think Joss is too busy (or whatever) to make more Firefly, and that's the only reason it doesn't happen.

I watched a video of the Serenity premiere in Edinburgh we filmed the other month, and I was one of the people who asked Joss a question about if Tim Minear would (potentially) do a sequel to Serenity. There is tutting heard from other fans nearby when I ask! Is hilarious. I can see why, but still - Tim's a deeply talented guy, and his voice is very obviously all over Firefly. Joss' answer, if anybody cares, was that Tim would be the only person he'd trust to do a Serenifly project.
I remember that, gossi. Weren't you the guy pronouncing Tim's name wrong? hee hee.
Ssssh you. (Yes, Joss gave me a lesson in speech in front of 900 people. SHAME.) (Mine-Ear). (Joss said he got it wrong for, like, the first 6 months but Tim was too polite to correct him, so I felt less bad).
ElectricSpaceGirl,

If you go to the Fireflyfans.net thread when you click on the subject of this post, you will see a picture of the banner. It is shiny.

[ edited by Anonymous1 on 2007-08-15 02:50 ]
ElectricSpaceGirl: "I went to the Hero's site but I'm just seeing an ad for Dirty Jobs. Refresh, refresh, still no Serenity. But I'll take all your words for it that it's shiny."

Try the one I go to, it's Heroes the Series and is one of the smaller boards. They have two banners up: The small one at the bottom is nearly constant, and the big one at the top alternates with other stuff.

Edited link

[ edited by cabri on 2007-08-15 03:29 ]
Hey, the ads are working. Read a post on imdb.com that someone saw the ad on one of the websites and didn't know about the DVD coming out and ordered it. Then they had to post about it and tell others!

So Whoo-hoo!
Whoo-hoo! Saw An Ad For Serenity Collector's Edition Dvd On Sci-fi Friday shows!

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