Friday, November 28, 2008

The Second Riffing of Santa and the Martians

When Cinematic Titanic revived the traditional style of insulting movies hat are themselves insults to cinema, some have wondered if the brave crew would dare revisit one of its past traumas, I mean, movies. Could they dare riff on Manos again? Monster-a-Go-Go? Pod People?

No....they had to take the ultimate risk: Santa Claus Conquers the Martians!

Joel Hodgson had thought about taking a second look at one of the movies he and the bots riffed on in the MST days. Just in time for the holidays, this looked like the ideal choice. The crew tried it out in St. Louis before a live audience, although the DVD was probably made before then. Considering the fact that half the jokes in the original would be lost on the younger fans, a new version would be needed.

We know the story: Martians come down to Earth to kidnap Santa so he can bring his Yuletide cheer to Mars. This inspires some Martian named Dropo to become Santa himself. This movie makes Four Christmases, or even Home Alone, look like It's a Wonderful Life.

Now, how do SCCTM 2.0 translate on screen? Well, when the crew is told, Trace tries to run away, while TV's Frank says "Stop calling it a film. We know better."

I'll start with comparing riffs from certain moments in the film.

When Santa is asked if he'll trade his sled for a rocket, he says "we're going out the good ol' fashioned way...."

MST: Guns a' blazing
CT: hammered.

Chochem explains Martians need Santa because "We have no children on Mars. They have children's bodies with adult minds..."

MST: like Drew Barrymore
CT: like Dennis Kucinich

Kimar meets Billy and Betty on Earth: "We're from Mars. Don't be afraid. We have children just like you."

MST: only they're worse actors
CT: We eat them

There is one example where I think the MST riff is much better. This is when Billy told the Martians they'll never kidnap Santa: "You won't get away with this, you....Martian."

Josh from CT: "I can't believe he dropped the M-bomb like that".
MST: "Santa's gonna cut you, man. Santa's a blade man, man."

But that's just me.

Other riffs in the second version have their charm. When the Martians use an air blaster to freeze Mrs. Claus: "Now why can't they do that to Ann Coulter?"

When Dropo starts dressing like Santa: "Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells, I wish I had a gun."

The Martian kids are told to go to bed: "Being a Martian is a bigger drag than being a Mormon"

Oh, and the final scene where Volmar is defeated by a toy attack...the MST version compared it to several scenes, such as the pie-throwing scene in The Great Race and the orgy scene in Caligula. All Mary Jo said about it is "OK, it's official. They made me hate fun", while Joel said it was as if "Barbarella and Jane Fonda had a big stupid mustache."

My suggestion: see both versions. That will drive you to egg nog, as long as it's 5% egg and 95% nog, but it would be worth it.

Also, I got the Rifftrax DVD featuring some of its most popular shorts. It's also a great diversion from the typical cheesy holiday specials that are not Rudolph, Frosty or Jimmy Stewart. It also includes a new way to riff: the crew takes on a safety film called Shake Hands With Danger, but you see Mike Nelson, Kevin Nelson and Bill Corbett as CGI avatars. Mike is still human while Kevin's a living popcorn box and Bill's a parrot. It's quite a different experience than seeing them in silhouette mocking bad cinema. Check it out!

Have A Dr. Horrible Christmas

Amazon has announced the DVD will be avilable for pre-order, and will be sent to millions of fans, no matter what Bad Horse or Fake Thomas Jefferson may try to pull, on December 19th. Just visit for more info. DVD's are 15 bucks each, but add another ten dollars to your order for free shipping.

UPDATE!! Joss posted just before nine p-m Pacific on 11/28 on Whedonesque...

Well, my turkey (or, in some cases, tofurkey) stuffed friends, we literally just put the finishing touches on the disc. Is it worth fifteen hard-earned dollars? Absolutely. In fact, I can say without reservation that the Dr. Horrible DVD is worth $15.23 EASILY. More, if your dollars weren't the hard-earned kind, just the kind you have lying around in your mom's purse. God knows WE'VE worked hard to earn 'em. "Commentary! The Musical" is the most painstaking and exhausting piece of whimsey I have ever mistaken for a good idea. It has nearly twice as much music as Dr. Horrible itself -- since you can't really talk that much during a commentary musical or it sounds like a regular commentary. (Which we also have, with the stars and writers, plus making-of's, ELE applications, and a few items left lying around by a notorious Bunny...) I can say without hesitation that I hesitate to say it's great. And by great I mean ridiculous. It's sophmoric, solopsistic, silly and the most fun I've had being exhausted since the fabled Mushortio itself. And everyone sings beautifullly. Which enrages me. I a little bit hate my friends now.

The listed street date is, by the way, a little later than we'd expected -- I'm hoping Amazon is just playing it safe and we can beat that date. More on that as we learn it. Expect a twittering sensation.

Finally, I just want to say "thank you" to everybody who has supported this venture. We've been able to pay our crew and all our bills, which means a lot. What means more is proving that completely independent ventures can muscle their way through the blizzard of big-budget behemoths. (A blizzard of behemoths? Back to writing school, alliteration-junkie!) All that rhetoric about the future of entertainment that flew about during the Strike is still entirely true. We need to find our own way of producing entertainment. A lot of people are watching Dr. Horrible to see if it's any kind of model -- way more people than I expected -- and it means everything to me to help pave the way for artists to start working and making a living from the ground up. There are a couple of real pioneers in this that I know personally: Felicia Day, I'm thrilled to say, and choreographer Chris Elam are both looking far ahead in terms of monetization and interactivity. Me, I'm more like Jimmy Stewart in "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance", but at least I'm out there. Thanks, he finally summed up, to you.

My story has become tiresome! But wait till you hear the songs.

Did we cover "silly"...?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

My turkey may be small, but my dreams are big

Well, it was a short weekend in Los Angeles. I didn't have enough time to do some of the things I wanted. It was mainly due to being a little sidetracked, but it was still worth it. I got to see some Big Damn Heroes, although I wished I would have seen more Gina Torres. Damn Sunday fog! It delayed my flight by 90 minutes. If I was only an hour late, I would have been OK. Still, my Flanvention memory book is now complete. I also didn't take as many pictures as I usually do. That's due to being in L-A a lot over two years. Well, once the Paley Festival comes around in March, I'll see if I want to spend four days, depending on what shows will be honored, and whether any big-time stars will attend, actor's strike or no actor's strike. With so many shows sinking quickly, I wouldn't be surprised if Dollhouse wound up on next year's list only because Joss will be there.

If there is a serious shortage of traditional shows, how about honoring some web series? Like maybbbbeeeeee...The Guild? Felicia Day is becoming the unlikely pioneer in this new form of TV, and snagging a couple of sponsors are making a big difference. Just look at the first episode of season two. It looks so much cleaner. Even the theme song gets a boost. Not only that, we get new episodes on a regular basis. The Emmys should consider adding a category for web series. Of course, this may mean Felicia will be challenged by Dr. Horrible, which she's also in. Well, you have to start somewhere.

My second visit to the Bonnie Hunt Show was also entertaining, and longer than usual. I did get a chance to see what goes on behind the scenes, like dealing with sound problems and other things. Besides, we got a bonus song from Trace Atkins that won't be shown until next month. He's a big guy with a nice new CD. They also planned out what might happen on Wednesday's show where Bonnie will either interview Kim, the "singer" in the Real Housewives of Atlanta, or herself as Kim. Let's hope for the real one because that might be scarier. Shane Mercado, who mimicked Beyonce's Single Ladies video will be back, too. I will definitely try to snag another visit in March, and not just because they serve lunch.

That is the best thing about visiting L-A: if you can't meet a star in the open road or around Rodeo Drive, you can see them in talk shows. I am still hoping someday to meet a big-time star just out of the blue. I did see Brooke Shields film a scene from a TV-movie three years ago in Sacramento, but from a respectable distance.

I did get one surprising bargain: a copy of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull for four dollars at a Hollywood Video. Add the Rifftrax "response", and you have a very entertaining evening. Add a Rifftraxed Iron Man, and you have something to do if you're not in the mood for cheesy Christmas movies that are usually ripoffs of A Christmas Carol.

I also got some riffed shorts, too. If you need something to watch on your iPod, get "Why Vandalism", "Drugs are like that", and "Coffeehouse Rendezvous" (basically a short on the worst way to stop protesting against anything in 1968).

All that's left is copying a ton of game shows for my Canadian collection, even if I won't get anything until Canadian postal workers end their strike. At least they timed their strike well, just in time for the holidays.

Now, I had a ball at the Serenity Salute in Burbank last week. Here's some of the pictures I took of Gina Torres, Summer Glau and Adam Baldwin.

Sadly I missed most of Gina's time because of weather problems. The worst news you could have on a morning flight is that you can't leave because your destination is too foggy. I still got her autograph, finally competing the set. Summer was as she usually is. You get the feeling that being a fan favorite is new to her, even after nearly seven years, but must be great. In fact, I am going to unearth a piece of the Flanvention for a one-time entry on this blog. This will happen Friday. Adam was cool as ever, talking about his current role on Chuck as well as "Becoming Jayne" (take that, Anne Hathaway). He even had some trivia questions for the audience.

They'll have another Serenity Salute next year. I may go depending on the economy, although I prefer that Creation Entertainment offer these events in Northern California. The good news is they will next Spring, a couple of weeks after WonderCon. However, it's going to be a convention for Twilight fans. As someone who believes nothing compares to Buffy and Angel, I should remember that Twilight should be examined on its own merits, Just like True Blood is different in many ways.
Still, Buffy and Angel...the real thing! Sorry, Edward and Bella. But maybe we'll see you at WonderCon, too.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

It's a Browncoat Thanksgiving

This holiday season will be different for me. It's the first time I won't be in any Firefly fan event in December. The past three years have been the Flanvention, the Backup Browncoat Bash and the Firefly Cruise to Cabo. All three have been unforgettable moments as a Whedonista.

However, December 2008 will not include trips to Southern California, or face-to-face meetings with any important cast members. I won't even be able to sneak into an early screening of a possible Oscar contender. If I'm lucky, I may go spend some pre-Christmas time in San Francisco.

Still, it's not a total loss. This weekend, I will be in L-A, completing my Firefly fan experience by finally meeting Gina Torres. Aside from being the distinguished wife of the new head of Las Vegas CSI (on TV, that is), she will soon be on Pushing Daisies if ABC remembers it still has to show the episodes it ordered. (Yes, I'm bitter. What of it, and you feel that way, too...right?). It's the main reason I am going. I would hope that despite the fact it's just before Thanksgiving, and this bad economy, they'll attract a lot of people to this event. Having Summer Glau and Adam Baldwin on the same day should help. If I could, I can ask her if it's OK if the photo op I had with her and Sean Maher can be on MySpace....for starters.

After that, I may squeeze in a few other things, like watching Repo! at the Sunset 5, hunting movie swag, and hoping to get an unadvertised screening of a future big movie. If nothing else, I still have a few movie passes I plan to put to good use. I expect to be seeing Milk, Frost/Nixon and maybe The Reader through the holidays.

As for my Thanksgiving, I will actually have the entire four-day weekend for the first time in years. Usually, I work through Turkey Day. After collecting way too many replacement holidays for six years, they are giving me a break. This also means I could try going to Target or something to take advantage of a Black Friday sale. The last time that worked out for me was last year, when I got good DVD's at Suncoast at embarrassingly cheap prices. It's not every day you can get a fairly recent movie for less than the ticket price, such as 300 or Children of Men.

I also got curious about how Canada celebrates Thanksgiving, since it takes place around the time of Columbus Day. Thanks to Wikipedia (what else?), I learned that people could have their holiday dinner at any time during the holiday, not just Monday. That's like having Thanksgiving on Friday or even Sunday instead of Thursday. I wonder if that idea could be popular in the states. Naaaah.

There is one issue I have with Thanksgiving, aside from department stores trying to jump-start Christmas just after Veteran's Day. Safeway has the nerve to offer turkeys for six to eight dollars, depending on the size IF you buy another 25 bucks worth of other items. Now, this is no big deal for a mom who has to cook for a family of four, but what about us single guys who have already picked up bargains at other stores, and live too far away from another store chain? This would have been resolved if not for the fact I am going to L-A this weekend, and all the turkeys will probably be gone before I get back. Oh, well, Cornish game hens should work just as well.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Ode to a closed pie shop

I am paraphrasing the first verse to the Firefly theme song, but this is how I feel...

Wednesday nights won't be so much
Without the baker with the magic touch
Thanks for nothing, ABC
You just took the pie from me

The Pie Hole, I wish I'd be
With a slice of Serenity
But they took the pie from me.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Pushing what? We're ABC, and we don't remember having that show

...and that's how you cancel a show without removing it from the schedule. You just forget about it.
Pushing Daisies had its lowest audience ever after being off the air for two weeks. This is just a wild guess, but maybe it would have done better if ABC bothered to promote the show. They had ads for Dirty Sexy Money, which is also nearly out the door, but nothing about a magic pie maker and his not-dead-anymore girlfriend. Meanwhile, Knight Rider is still out on the road, making fans of the original show sick.

OK, so why is still happening? Maybe we can blame the economy. Last year, when the Dow was at 12 thousand, we were in the mood about a show where this pie making guy named Ned could revive the dead by touching them, then solving their deaths with a cynical P.I., a not-dead-anymore girlfriend, and a pocket-sized waitress. Now, the Dow is at 7500 (which is somehow Barack Obama's fault according to so-called experts on the radio), banks are failing, and auto bigwigs are begging Congress for a bailout while refusing to fly coach. With life suddenly not so bright, people scowl at anything cute and cheery, and that includes that pie maker. After all, Ned, could you save the economy if you hugged the New York Stock Exchange, General Motors and Washington Mutual? Come to think of it, if he did, NASDAQ, Chrysler and Citibank would cease to exist 61 seconds later.

So, maybe it's the economy that cut the audience in half. Maybe it was the writer's strike that ended the first season after nine shows, or ABC playing lots of promos for season two but neglecting to show the first season again. The Mobile Pie Hole tour may have been a good idea, but reminding people how good the first season was would have been more effective. At least Fox did that with Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles by repeating that against the Olympics...considering the gold medal events didn't start until after 10 PM.

It's just a shame a cheery, yet slightly dark, show like Pushing Daisies is being allowed to fade away by just forgetting it exists. This is worse than how Fox screwed up Firefly by rejecting the pilot, and showing it last. At least it's a mistake they will never be allowed to forget, thanks to DVD sales. Short of tossing a 200-foot pie at the ABC complex in Burbank, let's do what we can to show ABC that what it's doing to Pushing Daisies will also be an unforgettable mistake.

Can a super-dog challenge vampires this weekend?

What if your life and your world was all a lie?

Sounds like a sci-fi movie or a political thriller...or maybe a dog with super-powers who discovers he's not so super, but still very special.

That's the story of Bolt, Walt Disney's latest animated movie. There was a preview recently at the UA Market Square in Sacramento. Parents and kids filled the theater to check out what could be Twilight's strongest rival right through the Thanksgiving holidays. While some theaters are showing it in 3-D, we got the 2-D version.

The movie centers on Bolt (John Travolta), a dog with powers that would give Krypto and half the cast of Heroes a run for their money. Actually, he's been raised to think his TV show is the real world. As far as Bolt thinks, he and his person, Penny (Miley Cyrus), are always battling the evil Dr. Calico. The pompous director, who reminded me of Christof from The Truman Show, explains that's how Bolt is good at his job. Never mind the fact the show is a cross between Lassie and Alias.

He's also the butt of jokes on the set, as he's teased by two "evil" cats who exploit the fact that Bolt is really clueless. That winds up backfiring on the cats as Bolt gets loose, then falls into a box that winds up getting shipped to New York. Now Bolt tries to figure out how to get home and "save" Penny, who he thinks is under Calico's clutches.

On the way, he's puzzled as to why his super-powers have failed him. He crosses paths with an alley cat named Mittens, who acts tough except for the fact she has no claws. They also meet Rhino, a hamster who travels in a plastic ball and is Bolt's number one fan. Mittens is amused that Bolt is surprised he can be injured, or that his "bolt" on his side isn't a birthmark. It isn't long, however, before they rely on each other to get to California.

When I first heard about this, I though this was basically Buzz Lightyear as a dog. Actually, it turned out to be more. The story is straight-forward, and with a typical message that you don't need super-powers to be a hero. It's how they get there that makes this a good film. It also talks about illusion and identity, as the studios try to solve the problem of a missing Bolt with, well, another illusion. It also deals with Penny and how the pressures of her job, and keeping Bolt fooled, affect her relationship with her dog. I also liked how Bolt and Mittens learned to get along as they travel west. You'll just have to see what they wind up doing. Rhino was also a riot, as he though watching Bolt on TV would make him a super-hero. Actually, it makes him Jack Black as a hamster, but it still paid off.

Since not everyone is under the spell of Twilight, Bolt should do well over the next two weeks. I still have a soft spot for Wall-E, the obvious choice for Best Animated Film in next year's Oscars. I strongly suggest getting this on DVD, too. I got the single-disc version because I didn't need as many extras as the 3-disc version. Besides, it bothers me the digital file version of the movie will expire after one year, instead of keeping it as long as you'd like.

Friday, November 14, 2008

ABC won't shut its Pie Hole...for now

Bad news, Pie Hole fans.....the Futon Critic has revealed the mid-season schedule for ABC, which will include dates soon. The thing is....Pushing Daisies is nowhere to be found on Wednesday nights or any night. It will be replaced by two sitcoms, Scrubs (picked up on waivers from NBC) and The Goode Family, either in late February or March. Thus, the back nine order is no more. It's the same story for Dirty Sexy Money, but that show has never given away pie.
Yet, According to Jim takes up a whole hour on Tuesdays against Fringe. Well, my choice is clear.

Of course, some may decide that Ned should grab his Pie Hole with his two hands, hoping his Magic Touch will save the show. Well, it won't work that way. Neither will throwing pies at the ABC building in Burbank with the worst pie fillings ever.

On the other hand..............well, seriously...

This means that getting more people to watch Pushing Daisies will be important right through February. It's clear we won't get a full 22 episode season, but it means the show will last an entire full season over two years. If it matches up against strong competition, including American Idol, through February sweeps, we'll get a third season. It's our only hope.

Still, if ABC went through all the trouble to set up a Mobile Pie Hole Tour, it should have given the show a full order of 22 shows. Maybe a clip show would help to get people caught up. It will certainly do that for Lost before it comes back in January.

The point's up to us regular Pie Hole customers. We get people to watch, and we get a third season. Otherwise, we get a cliffhanger that is never resolved.

Wait a minute...where's Nathan Fillon's show, Castle? Well, maybe next fall.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Things aren't always what they seem (we hope), says Fox

First off, I got the DVD screener for the 24 movie, Redemption. Jack is back indeed, as he tries to save some kids who are in the middle of a civil war in the fictional country of Sengala. Naturally, this is only part of the story. It happens just as a new president, played by Cherry Jones, is about to be sworn in. Throw in a possible conspiracy that involves people close to her, and an evil Jon Voight, and the new day will dawn.

Oh, and Jack is trying to avoid a subpoena to testify before Congress about how he did his old job. Trust me...this will definitely give 24 new life after being out of action for more than a year thanks to the writer's strike. If this new style works, maybe they can stick to it as long as their contract with Keifer Sutherland lasts.

Also, TV Week spoke to Preston Beckman, the head of Fox programming and, according to every single Whedonista in the world, the man who will cancel Dollhouse five minutes after it starts on February 13th. Why else would he put it on Fridays, where no TV show has ever succeeded since The X-Files?

Well, he has an explanation that actually sounds like he wants to make things better...

"If we put it (Dollhouse) on Monday and it didn't do well, we might have to yank it," he said. But because Fox's winter lineup should be solid on Saturday through Thursday nights, "We can afford to let these shows run their course. We can give them 12 or 13 weeks to find an audience."

To be fair, that's how long they gave Firefly, although they didn't like the pilot, and showed it last. If Beckman sticks to his word, then we'll gladly thank him. This idea wouldn't only benefit Dollhouse, but also Terminator: Sarah Connor Chronicles and its role in reviving it as a movie franchise. Even the Whedonesque posters are calmed least for now.

He hopes this will lead to Fox having four nights with popular shows by next fall. If, unlike previous years, Fox puts some faith, along with promotion, into new shows. we can all feel better.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

It's all a matter of priorities

Well, we got some Whedon-releated news today. One of which sounds really bad, and the other less so.
First, the Hollywood reporter has announced that Fox will start Dollhouse just in time for February sweeps. One problem...the premiere date is Friday the 13th. It's safe to say the Whedonistas are NOT happy about this. I had expected Terminator: Sarah Connor Chronicles to stay on Monday as a lead-in to 24, since it's seen as part of the strategy to revive the Terminator movie franchise. Now, it will be a lead-in to Dollhouse on Fridays. Maybe Fox is hoping the Sci-Fi Channel crowd will head towards Fox with this line-up. Most, though, think this is Fox burying two shows alive, then saying "hey, we thought people would be so excited they'd even watch TV on Fridays." The other way this works is that people tape both shows on TiVo, then watch it on the weekend. This would boost the number of real viewers. If Fox is hoping technology will make both shows more attractive and popular, then it looks like a genius, and finally Joss Whedon's best friend. Otherwise, the only network Joss will trust is his own...and iTunes.

The other bit of news is that ABC has reduced he number of episodes for Nathan Fillion's show Castle from 13 to ten, but that is because it's got a lot of mid-season shows it wants to release. I just hope they improve from the pilot, especially the female detective who's supposed to find him attractive because everyone else does. They just better not put the show on Pushing Daisies' time slot.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Why February 13th, or so, will be a good day

Well, we know Dollhouse will start in February 13th, which most people think is an unlucky day. When you see this preview, thanks to YouTube, you'll hope it will be a lucky day after all...

So, what now?

We've spent much of this year gettng ready for what happened yesterday..the selction of a new President, and all that it means.

So, what do we do now?

We look forward to this with optimism and hope. Whether Barack Obama was your choice or not, just remember that things can change, and for the better. Also, we have to do the best we can to achieve that. We all want things to be better, even a little bit. With the Holidays coming up, we can start there, with an extra toy or two or an extra can of food, to provide to those less fortunate. I will do my part, and I hope we all do.

Now, abut how TV covered this election....

some may accuse Keith Olbermann of being a bit too eager to see the Bush era gone, when he pointed out just before 7 PM Pacific, or something like that, that Obama was just about elected if you counted the West Coast states. That may be true, but the minute they announced Obama won Ohio, the writing was on the wall.

What bugged me was the fact that we saw ads for the initiatives up until the last minute. I can remember that no one aired campaign ads on election day, but I guess that's gone. CNN's coverage also seemed to border on virtual reality. They spared no expense using special effects to show which party's winning in Congress or specific races. What tok the cake was an interview with will. of the Blackeye hologram!! While he sounded OK, his image wasn't as realistic as they'd like. He looked like someone was broadcasting his image with a cellphone the size of Lebron James. Star Trek effects have no place in covering elections. Besides, why interview someone by hologram? That's way too gimmicky, and doesn't add anything to the interview. If you start with news channels, what's shows? Sports? Do we just stay in our homes while our virtual selves go to work?

OK, I'm over-reacting a little, but if you have new technology that you just can't wait to show off, make it something that actually makes something better. A hologram of will. didn't make CNN's election coverage better. It was a parlor trick, and I'd rather have flesh-and-blood blowhards that long-winded holograms in my news coverage.

Monday, November 3, 2008

What if the Browncoat Party took over?

Thanks to Whedonesque, I found something at Buffyfest which projected what would our country be like if the Slayer Party defeated Obama and McCain tomorrow. Could you cheer for a President Giles, Vice President Wyndham-Pryce, or support Buffy for Secretary of Defense, and Angel as National Intelligence Director? Some of the other choices are interesting, and more likely if there were still alive.

But this reminded me of something I found in io9 which gave ten alternative presidential tickets to the ones we're facing. One of them is Reynolds/Washburn, better known as Mal and Zoe. They're the "damn prettier" version of McCain/Palin, and more interesting, too. Actually, the ticket was Mal and Wash, but Zoe works better. Also, a more interesting ticket would be Jayne Cobb/Vera, but that's only if his gun could talk. Even though the election is done a Reynolds/Washburn campaign t-shirt is still a nice thing to wear, and it benefits Equality Now. Just click here to learn more.

Of course, this would all work if the Alliance had a democratic government that included everyone, even the border planets and people who kind of like the Browncoat way. Nah, I don't think such a government exists either, not in the Firefly-verse anyway. BUT...if it did, I guess they'd have an Electoral College or parliamentary system. If the Browncoat Party did have a signal that couldn't be stopped, aside from the other one from the movie, what roles would the Serenity crew have in government?

Simon is a cinch as Health Secretary, Jayne and Vera as Secretary of Defense, Inara as Secretary of State, Kaylee as Secretary of Transportation, and a much healthier River Tam as Secretary of Education, who would crack down of the Academy that she attended to make sure the "gifted" get a good and safe education.

How about those who aren't exactly Mal's best friends? The Operative, who becomes a bit more enlightened about the world, could be a good Chief of Staff. Badger may come up with interesting trade deals, and Saffron/Yolanda/Bridget sounds like a CIA head to me.

As someone once said, what do you think, sirs?