GENERAL DISCUSSIONS

Was it the right thing to defang Jayne so quickly?

POSTED BY: HATEHATEHATEFOX
UPDATED: Friday, September 17, 2004 04:16
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Tuesday, September 14, 2004 9:00 AM

HATEHATEHATEFOX


I've been pondering this awhile now. Was it a good idea to neuter Jayne so early on in the show? I mean even Simon (arguably the weakest of the crew) is not really afraid of Jayne anymore. A la Trash.

I always found part of Jayne's appeal comes from his unpredictability and self-serving ways. Also there is that undercurrent of danger with him.

He's a big dumb dog who could go off at any moment -- but is he that same dog anymore?

Just wonder if anyone else had felt this way. JW seems to have tipped his hand with Jayne really quickly but then maybe he knew the end was near and wanted to wrap up at least one tiny arc before it was all over.


~~~~~~~~
Nothing is ever so profoundly regretted as a kind act.
Robertson Davies

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Tuesday, September 14, 2004 9:57 AM

KOZURE


It's been my experience with some personality types that they behave "nicely" for a few months after being 'slapped', and then they're back to their old ways.

Not to say that no one can be redeemed, but in the case of someone like Jayne Cobb, I could definitely see a relapse of sorts being entirely feasible.

Kozure the Kamikaze Highlander

Proud Citizen of Canada-That-Was

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Tuesday, September 14, 2004 10:12 AM

EMBERS


I agree, I think back sliding is more than possible...
notice in OiS Jayne is quick to refuse responsibility for leaving his gun lying around...
he is still selfish and ultimately unreliable,
hense the sleeping thru Early's visit on the ship.
but I also think that Joss had to 'de-fang' him in that Jayne has to be part of the crew. With all his faults he has to be someone Mal can trust to protect his back, otherwise he doesn't belong on the ship as part of the crew...and Mal being blind to that and having someone essentially 'evil' on board would reflect poorly on Mal's leadership....

It will be interesting to see how Joss approaches this in the movie.

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Tuesday, September 14, 2004 10:31 AM

FREAKYSINS


I have a very good friend whom I trust with my life. That doesn't, however, mean that he handles certain situations well at all. He has an incredibly volatile temper and as such, is simply not a good person to have dealing with people in a stressful situation. For certain jobs, there's nobody better, but if tact is required, find someone else. I see Jayne the same way. He's hardly been defanged as much as shaped into a workable crewmember... Mal saw something in him when they first met (the flashback in OoG) that said "He'll make a good enforcer, given adequate house-training and a short leash". Despite Jayne's being brought in line with a well-placed wrench and a few statements of fact, he's still going to be the first one to make a dangerous remark, throw a punch, break a bone, or pull a trigger... it's just in his nature. As such, he's going to require more-or-less constant reminding and the above-mentioned short leash. Definitely a place for him onboard, though.

Peace

FS

"There has never been a just one, never an honorable one--on the part of the instigator of the war.

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Tuesday, September 14, 2004 1:06 PM

HKCAVALIER


Yeah, I don't see Jayne "defanged" in any way, only the crew is now fully aware of where his fangs are. I really don't see Simon as no longer afraid of him either. Simon is merely showing some courage and some smarts in dealing with him. I think Jayne is still a short chat with the wrong people away from betraying the crew. Maybe the list of "wrong people" is shorter, but it's still there.

The feeling I got from the show was that since Jayne is more or less entirely tangential to the big story arcs, Joss & Co. felt no need to keep things from happening with Jayne as briskly as they did. My sense was that had the season come to its rightful end, there would have been a good deal more movement toward a real Jayne redemption. But Jayne is a pretty deeply troubled soul, so I'm sure there still would've been plenty of wiggle room for trouble later on.

HKCavalier

Hey, hey, hey, don't be mean. We don't have to be mean, because, remember, no matter where you go, there you are.

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Tuesday, September 14, 2004 1:31 PM

WILDHEAVENFARM


I don't think he was really toned down that much. Jayne had a soft side in the beginning too - watching over Kaylee, being afraid of Reavers, etc. And he's still the same fightin', whorin' Jayne towards the end of the run, a la "Heart Of Gold."

And regarding Simon in "Trash", Jayne threatened the one thing that makes Simon act manly and tough (e.g. hand-to-hand combat with Dobson).

Quote:

Originally posted by HATEHATEHATEFOX:
I've been pondering this awhile now. Was it a good idea to neuter Jayne so early on in the show? I mean even Simon (arguably the weakest of the crew) is not really afraid of Jayne anymore. A la Trash.



Mary
Always a beast, never a burden.

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Tuesday, September 14, 2004 3:32 PM

THEREUR


Quote:

Originally posted by HATEHATEHATEFOX:
I've been pondering this awhile now. Was it a good idea to neuter Jayne so early on in the show? I mean even Simon (arguably the weakest of the crew) is not really afraid of Jayne anymore. A la Trash.



Hey folks! New to posting on the board, nice to meet ya. This question definitely got me thinking.

I guess I see it a litte more akin to a wild or fight trained dog (say a pit bull) being taken in and learning not to turn on its new family. He's only just at the point of learning not to bite the other dog or the kids or it'll cost him. Most dogs we think of as most vicious, if treated right, are amazingly steadfast and fierce defenders of their family/pack. That's where I see him going. Although, if the money's good enough ...

Jayne's very simple life has gotten more complicated. He's learned the hard way that he cares what the others think of him (he asks Mal in "Ariel" to make something up about his death and then in unspoken apology buys real off-the-tree apples for the whole crew in "War Stories"). In "Objects in Space" we see him say in a River vision something like "I got stupid. The money was too good". That could mean he regrets falling for the trap and/or he regrets handing them over.

I was a little surprised by the softening of the character's image in "The Message", what with the letter from mom and the Orange hat, but I was also intrigued by the element of (for lack of a better word) innocence in the mercenary. Sometimes the simple way Jayne views the world could be seen as childlike--a big child with very, very big guns but that doesn't make him less dangerous.

As for Simon:

Simon shows some fangs of his own in "Trash" when he reveals River and he know about Jayne's betrayal and points out to Jayne that Simon could erase Jayne any number of quiet medicinal ways now or later when he has a major injury, but won't. I think he finds Jayne very dangerous, but will not live in fear of him. I think it's a calculated risk to create an opportunity for guarded trust.

Whew, sorry I got so longwinded.

Remember: No matter where you go, there you are.
--Buckaroo Bonzai

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Tuesday, September 14, 2004 6:56 PM

THEREALME


Welcome to the best firefly board that exists!


In my mind, even at the time of the pilot, Jayne would not turn on his family, that is, Mal, Zoe, Wash, and Kaylee (maybe Inara, too, I dunno). I think the "interesting day" talk with Mal is all bluff.

But Jayne has trouble seeing the Tams and even Book, at first, as anything but troublesome passengers. I think that Jayne thought that he was doing Mal a favor by getting rid of the Tams (not that he would turn down the reward!). Note that he did not try it until he was sure that the action would be far away from Serenity. Jayne did not want to endanger his friends.

I think that Ariel was just one step in Jayne's growth as a character.


The Real Me

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Tuesday, September 14, 2004 7:39 PM

EBONEZER


I agree with the thought that Jayne's only subdued for a little while, yes, even if he has learned and had some charchter building, i think he's a loose cannon though, and always will be, and i think that if the show hadn't gotten cancled, Wash would've been the focus of his...rage, anger, cannon fire, whatever

Theres just some lines where Wash is making fun of him like the "How did your brain ever learn human speech?" and "It IS just sitting." and the little "You wanna go little man?" "Only if its someplace with candlelight." I think that these just kind of allude to or foreshadow or build up to thinkgs to come. Jayne doesn't strike me as the type of person who would just let these insults slide.

Now, After the whole almost getting sucked out of the airlock thing Jaynes gonna watch his back for a while, but i think eventually Jayne wouldv'e gotten angry and maybe gotten into an insult shouting match with Wash, which could turn into a shoving match, which Jayne would win or Wash would back down from. Or Mal would step in or whatever.

That just what i think is all.

I also have this great picture in my head of Wash hiding out from Jayne with River in that little hidden compatment in the hold. Like down where River hid from Book's hair.

I crack me up.

-----------------------------------

Four out of five dentists reccomend calling Ebo a girl.

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Tuesday, September 14, 2004 9:33 PM

PURPLEBELLY


Jayne had no fangs to remove. He started as a weak, blustering bully and will remain so until River is safely on the witness protecton program and Simon can devote himself to resolving Jayne's personality issues within a supportive relationship; cf Purplebelly's Denouement.

Only Purplebelly believes this

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Wednesday, September 15, 2004 4:13 AM

BROWNCOAT1

May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one.


Welcome to the board Thereur.

I do not see Jayne as "defanged" at all. I think what we were seeing as the series progressed was Jayne struggling w/ his greed and self serving ways. I believe in time Jayne would have grown to be more trust worthy and more reliable.

In Serenity we see his anger over the shooting of Kaylee when he tries to kill Dobson, who only lives through Book's intervention on his behalf. We see his concern for Kaylee when he is outside the window of the infirmary, the look of concern on his face and in his posture plain to all of us.

In Jaynestown we see his confusion over the Mudder's mistaken interpretation of the money Jayne tossed out of his damaged shuttle. He seems to struggle w/ how to deal w/ the Mudders adoration during his speech before Stitch interrupts. There is also his talk w/ Mal on the catwalk over the young Mudder taking the shotgun blast meant for Jayne. Jayne's pain and confusion are apparent and a sign that he is not the heartless mercenary that he would have everyone believe him to be.

Ariel though seems to be the most significant instance of his inner turmoil w/ who he is during the air lock scene w/ Mal. When he tells Mal to "make something up" & "don't tell them what I done". Jayne was visibly upset and his remorse was obvious even to Mal. Had it not been for his remorse I have no doubt Mal would have airlocked Jayne.

Jayne is selfish and always out to make a buck, but as we have seen he does have his soft spots. His joy over the letter from his Ma in The Message and the hat she made him shows he loves her. Jayne's solemn look and removing his hat as Mal & Zoe sit down Tracy's coffin show that he is a caring person under that rough exterior.

"May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one."


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Wednesday, September 15, 2004 5:30 AM

GHOULMAN


HATEHATEHATEFOX! ... oh, I love that nic.

Reading this thread I feel the need to point out that Jayne isn't "defanged" imho but he now lives with Mal.

Mal keeps Jayne in line. Jayne knows that when he makes a mistake Mal will punish him. Even kill him if Jayne goes too far.

Mal has made this very clear to Jayne.

I completely agree with Adam Bs' description of Jayne - he's an eight year old thug. Mal is that eight year olds father figure. Without Mal, Jayne would be uncontrolable and try to take over the ship... unless someone drugs him. Right?

Am I way off?

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Thursday, September 16, 2004 3:02 AM

BROWNCOAT1

May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one.


I agree w/ you Ghoulman, many times Jayne acts like a petulant child. When he steps out of line Mal is there to straighten him out.

I think the comparison of Mal to a father figure for Jayne is not too far off the mark. I think that Jayne looks to Mal for leadership, and as we have seen in "Jaynestown" as someone he can confide in when it is necessary.

"May have been the losing side. Still not convinced it was the wrong one."


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Thursday, September 16, 2004 9:00 AM

YT

the movie is not the Series. Only the facts have been changed, to irritate the innocent; the names of the actors and characters remain the same


Quote:

Originally posted by TheRealMe:
In my mind, even at the time of the pilot, Jayne would not turn on his family, that is, Mal, Zoe, Wash, and Kaylee (maybe Inara, too, I dunno). I think the "interesting day" talk with Mal is all bluff.

But Jayne has trouble seeing the Tams and even Book, at first, as anything but troublesome passengers. I think that Jayne thought that he was doing Mal a favor by getting rid of the Tams (not that he would turn down the reward!). Note that he did not try it until he was sure that the action would be far away from Serenity. Jayne did not want to endanger his friends.



I concur entirely, from the time of the pilot. In Out of Gas (flashback), we see Jayne abandon his then Captain for a paltry improvement in his situation, yet he turns down Dobson's offer of "enough to buy your own ship".

Jayne may not be intrinsically loyal, but he is loyal to Mal and, by extension, his crew. I think he would be, unto death.

Keep the Shiny Side Up

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Thursday, September 16, 2004 9:09 AM

KOZURE


Quote:

Originally posted by YT:
I concur entirely, from the time of the pilot. In Out of Gas (flashback), we see Jayne abandon his then Captain for a paltry improvement in his situation, yet he turns down Dobson's offer of "enough to buy your own ship".

Jayne may not be intrinsically loyal, but he is loyal to Mal and, by extension, his crew. I think would be, unto death.

Keep the Shiny Side Up



Ah... but I happen to believe that Jayne was playing both sides (Dobson and Mal) the whole time and just happened to come down on the side of right near the end. Remember, Dobson did manage to escape... and Jayne was responsible for tying him up.

On a completely unrelated note, I seem to recall a very unconfirmed rumour that went around at the time of the series' airing that Adam Baldwin wasn't contracted for the full run - i.e. there was a strong possibility of him being bumped off halfway through the first season. This might have dramatically underscored just how vulnerable the crew was.

Was this just rumour/heresay, or did anyone else hear this?

Kozure the Kamikaze Highlander

Proud Citizen of Canada-That-Was

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Friday, September 17, 2004 4:16 AM

DIXIEFLATLINE


Here's how I've always seen Jayne: Dumb as a rock. Helluva fighter. Gifted with a good deal of low cunning, and always on the lookout for Number One. Under the crass exterior beats a heart, not of gold, but of some semiprecious metal at least. Unfortunately, his instincts tend to overrule his loyalties at the worst possible moment.

He's not a bad man, but he tends to forget that fact until it's far too late and he's in way over his head, at which point he scrambles to cover his ass (usually in vain) and hope nobody notices his unconsidered treachery.

So I wouldn't have been at all surprised to see Jayne get himself in a heap of trouble once again, when a bundle of untraceable cash gets dangled in front of his nose and he momentarily forgets to consider the consequences.

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