9: Serenity is coming out tomorrow

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Serenity is coming out tomorrow
Mal, Simon, Wash, Zoe, River, Kaylee, Jayne, Inara, Book.
Title text: Mal, Simon, Wash, Zoe, River, Kaylee, Jayne, Inara, Book.


This comic is about the release of the movie Serenity, which was supposed to be the sequel to Joss Whedon's TV show, Firefly, which was cancelled by Fox after only one season (which it had aired out of order). The show was followed by a devoted number of fans who were outraged by the cancellation of the show. High DVD sales and strong fan support allowed the follow up film Serenity to be created, which tied up many of the loose ends that Firefly left open, such as the cause of River's abilities and the origins of the reavers.

The image shows the main characters of Firefly. From left to right:

This is the first xkcd with adorned stick figures (e.g. hair, coats, etc) to represent distinct characters, which later becomes a standard motif of the comic.


  • This is the tenth comic originally posted on livejournal. The previous was 6: Irony. The next was 10: Pi Equals. View archive here.
  • [Original title]: "Firefly"
  • [Original Randall quote]: "Drawn in honor of the upcoming Serenity! If you work very hard you can figure out who is who."


[Several stick figures stand side by side in a lineup. A forlorn male in a coat, a male with combed hair, a male with spiky hair and arms outstretched enthusiastically, a female with long hair and cornrows, a shorter female with stringy hair falling over her face, an enthusiastic female with arms raised in celebration with shorter hair, a male with short hair and a goatee, a female with curly hair wearing a dress, and a stern-looking man with flyaway hair. There is no dialogue.]

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Serenity / Firefly / River Tam /Summer Glau have been referenced in many other xkcd comics: ‎ (talk) 08:51 13 August 2012 (UTC) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)