Uncharted Stories by the Cast of Firefly

Photo by Bill Watters

Somewhere in this article, you will experience uncharted worlds as you discover the origins of Jayne’s hat, learn how to decorate your latrine in fancible Firefly fashion, find out who stole what from the set, identify which cast member Summer Glau’s daughter ripped the arm off of, and ascertain how Sean Maher became Jayne’s dad—much to Adam Baldwin’s pleasure. You should keep reading.

Fanatic Firefly fans lined up before 8AM on Sunday to see Jayne, River, and Simon in a completely full Marriott Atrium Ballroom.

Early on, Glau talked about the set being a safe environment for her where she was able to make mistakes and grow as an actor. One audience member expounded upon this point when she asked if Glau related to her character River, who was growing up in the story as well. She replied, “I feel like River came along in the right time in my life, and there was something about her rawness and vulnerability and unpredictability that came together at the right time with where I was in my life. They also drew on who I was as person as well.” The moderator expanded the question to Baldwin and Maher and asked how they grew during the course of the show.

That was the moment when things started to get shiny.

*Gorram silence*

Maher finally answered that he had no growth whatsoever, but Baldwin explained how they had an amazing props department. He learned to become more involved with prop work, and whenever he obtained the scripts, he would go to props with a list of items he wanted to work with in that day’s scenes in order to keep his hands busy.

Maher jumped in afterward and recounted a funny story that he’d never told Baldwin before:

“Jayne touches everything… A few years ago, my amazingly delicious tornado of a son, he’s now six, just used to touch everything. Everything, everything! Just don’t. Put that down. Don’t touch. Don’t do that. What am I doing? Oh!! That’s Simon reacting to Jayne. Touching. Just stop touching.”

“That’s fabulous. Your son is channeling me,” Baldwin exclaimed. Simon had a Jayne baby.

Spoiler alert: Firefly was canceled. Too soon? One fan asked what the cast members took, or stole, from the set. “I feel like everyone robbed the set afterwards. I took my boots, which were actually my boots… I came to work one day and Joss [Whedon] said ‘I love those boots,’ so they went to the store and bought them,” Maher answered. Baldwin took shirts and autographed scripts that he auctioned off for charity, with the help of the California Browncoats, and raised over $50,000. He also took the MMA gloves and Jayne’s boots.

Glau has pretty little paper magnet dolls of the whole cast that her daughter loves to play with. One day, Glau discovered a severed arm just lying on the floor! Upon investigation, her daughter had torn off Jayne’s arm. Baldwin replied that he really likes those paper dolls, and, while he always puts them right, someone inevitably puts Jayne’s head with a dress.

One attendee pointed out that Jayne’s hat has become iconic and asked where the idea came from. Baldwin explained that they wanted to have a care package come from Jayne’s mom, and they thought they’d just give him a hat. There was a woman in the office who knew how to knit, and she knitted two, one as a backup. Baldwin said, “That’s the hook. They thought, ‘Well, that’s goofy looking.’ When I saw the hat, I was like, ‘I’m wearing that through the whole show. Once I have it, I’m wearing it.’” He had to convince the crew to let him keep it on throughout the episode. The reason why? He wanted to take the hat off during the memorial and show that “there was a little bit of religiosity somewhere in Jayne’s lizard brain,” Baldwin recounted.

You may be a dedicated fan, but you’ll probably never be as dedicated as one Dragon Con fan. He confided with the cast that his bathroom is decked out in all things Firefly including, “Wash has little plastic dinosaurs and Kaylee has Kaylee’s parasol.” He went on to ask what small item they would pick to represent their character in the bathroom. After the audience erupted in hysteria, Baldwin asked, “What the hell do you use the hat for?”

Glau had a quick response and would choose a nail file in the shape of her sword. After some jokes about using his vests to wipe his a** with, Maher said Simon’s medical bag as makeup kit or toiletry bag.

Baldwin had the shiniest answer: “A toilet seat when it’s down, it’s quiet. But when you lift it up, the Firefly theme song plays.” He then started to sing: “Take my love, take my land…”

Author of the article

Not everyone can say they watch television for homework, read novels for inspiration, and are paid to follow what’s trending. For Alicia Pack, it is all part of life as a writer and media enthusiast.  When she isn't lost in the world she is trying to create, you can find her with her nose in a book or catching up on her favorite supernatural shows.  She has a Master’s degree in Mass Communications and a Bachelor’s degree in Radio, Television, and Film.  Her nine years of diverse media experience include news writing, copywriting, website content management, social media, promotions, television production, and teaching.