“I’m beginning to think, though, that in real life Joss Whedon would have been on the side of the Alliance.”
Glenn Reynolds, Instapundit
This was a throwaway line written under some related news all the way back in 2012 but it stuck with me and I was reminded about it fairly recently. I’m a big fan of the Firefly series and like many fans, have hoped to see a sequel. So I’ve been interested in anything that adds to the series including the comic ‘Those Left Behind’. The edition I bought has a back-story written by Joss Whedon.
The Independence fighters (Browncoats) which characters Malcolm Reynolds and Zoe Washburne fought for in the events prior to the one and only season of Firefly and the Serenity movie. The Browncoats are most directly influenced by the Confederate States Army soldiers (Rebels) in the American Civil War. Although the battle was lost and over in Firefly, there is also similarity with the Rebel Alliance from Star Wars. Mal in particular is obviously inspired by Han Solo – right down to the clothing he wears.
Joss Whedon’s politics aren’t a secret but he’s shrewd enough to know they don’t always sell well which must be why he has produced so much that appeals to his ideological opposites. This finally went bad for him last year when, despite being a “male feminist” and a darling of the social justice crowd, he was run off Twitter by angry social justice warriors. The left always eats their own.
The backstory to the Firefly series called, “A Brief History of the Universe, Circa 2516 A.D.” which was written for the Serenity film actually gives a lot more credence to Glenn Reynold’s observation. What follows is a brief fisking and by the end you’ll only be surprised he used “A.D.” for the year.
On the superpowers that formed the Alliance:
“These two powers, still working in harmony, grew at once into the most populous and advanced civilizations in the new galaxy.”
“Advanced” meant just that: these were enlightened cultures, with respect for all non-aggressive religious beliefs (though the main religion of both planets was Buddhism). Literacy levels were at 94%. Average lifespan was 120. Public service was not law-it was simply an ingrained part of people’s ethos. And pot was totally legal (though I probably won’t stress that. In fact, forget I said it.)“
He goes on to mention that prostitution is also legal and regulated by the state. It is hard not to want to read something into Mr. Whedon that he thought these two things in particular, worth singling out. The high respect for prostitutes in the Firefly series is also quite telling. One also has to wonder how much he would squirm if he was asked to name which religions he considers “aggressive”.
Now on to the “bad” civilisations:
“The outer planets, the worlds and moons that hadn’t been chosen to house the new civilization-they were the destination for the poorer, the more extreme, the pioneers.”
Keep in mind that the people from these planets are the main characters in the show.
“They travelled out to the nearest planet someone hadn’t claimed yet and started turning their rockets into roofs. Building off whatever the land had been shaped to provide them with.”
Adventurous, industrious and independent. What’s not to like?
“Some of these people were brought near to savagery by the conditions they encountered.”
You have to wonder how he’d define savagery.
“Some were just hard-working, independent folk who didn’t want their lives mapped out for them before they’d lived them.”
I think I’d take my chances with the savages to be with people like this.
“Some were orthodox in their beliefs to the point where they were not comfortable among nonbelievers, and wanted worlds where they would not be slowly homogenized into the ruling society. And some had reason to avoid the law.”
How you react to the first sentence would be a very good indicator of whether or not I’d want you having a say in my life.
“There were troubles. There were famines; there were wars-the human race didn’t get better or smarter just ‘cause they had made scientific leaps.”
Of course not. The path to the righteousness is learning this.
“Things were definitely more peaceful amongst the central planets, but that peace was bought at a price. Nothing resembling totalitarianism, but a certain regulation of existence that would not sit well with some.”
Notice how vague this is and then remember the kind of things the Alliance is found to have done at the end of Serenity.
“In an effort to unite and quell this conflict, the central planets formed the ALLIANCE, a governing structure that unified them all under one governing body, the PARLIAMENT.”
Notice POWER doesn’t come into it at all.
“The Parliament ruled over the people with fairness and intelligence, but also with a strong army and a wary eye toward any insurrection.”
I can’t read the above sentence with a straight face. Could he really not see the contradiction when he wrote it? Did the editors miss this too?
“The real trouble started when the Alliance started to look beyond its borders to the world around them. Partially out of a desire to see life improved there (and it was often unnecessarily barbaric), to bring all the planets into the fold of enlightenment, and partially out of a simple imperialistic wish for control and need for resources offlimits to them, the Parliament-and the Allied planets as a whole-decided that every planet should become part of their program. Should be an Alliance planet, whether they wanted to or not. “
So, just like every other empire. And again, he seems totally oblivious to the massing contradictions.
“The War for Unification was the most devastating in human history.”
So in order to make things more safe and peaceful, they started the most devastating war in human history. Please remember this next time someone on the left talks about wanting to make anywhere or anything more “safe”, “peaceful” or “tolerant”. The likely result will be a crater.
“Outer planets such as Hera (where the Battle of Serenity was fought), Persephone, and Shadow mustered forces- more than half volunteers- to stop what they felt to be nothing more than imperialist hegemony.”
What they “felt” to be. Yet that’s exactly what he admitted it was in between justifications on the very same page.
“They did not expect so many men and women to still consider freedom worth dying for.”
Lesson: never bet against freedom.
The rest just introduces the characters but this is a great example of the incoherence of the modern left. Whedon is a lot like a true-believing but honest Communist historian (assuming such a person exists), trying to justify each atrocity the facts force them to acknowledge. It may seem a bit unfair picking on a background document for a motion picture but then, he did publish it. And this is all the proof you need that Joss Whedon is on the Alliance’s side.