FIREFLY EPISODE DISCUSSIONS

Big Damn Inara Theory

POSTED BY: RAPTORED
UPDATED: Tuesday, October 17, 2006 13:35
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Friday, November 11, 2005 11:30 AM

RAPTORED


My Big Damn Inara Theory:
1) Okay, what’s in that vial that she pulls out in the Serenity pilot when the Reavers atttack? Joss has said it isn’t a suicide kit, which is what everyone assumes. I think the only other thing that make sense is that it’s something she can inject herself with to make herself go backward in time or enables her to reverse time on a limited basis. Some have suggested the vial is a sort of super-drug she could inject that would make her fight off the Reavers, but we already have “River the Assassin,” so I don’t think having two, (or three, counting Zoe) “warriror women” on the show makes much sense. I think the time-travel also explains a lot about her character. Such as:

A) She’s obviously afraid of giving into her attraction to Mal and getting attatched to members of the crew on a deeply emotional level. This is either because she knows she won’t progress far enough along with them age and time wise to keep up with them (since the reverse time travel somehow keeps her young) and she’ll have to watch them get old and die, which is too painful for her. Or, alternately, she’s actually been through many “previous” scenarios with Mal and the crew before the time frame of the show, and they all ended painfully, so she reversed time and started “all over again.” So she may also know the outcome of these relationships can only bring pain, so she simply avoids them. It also explains why she brings out the vial before the Reavers attack. Time reversal is only to be used sparingly and in the most drastic of circumstances, ect, since it may change the outcome of the future, ect.... (I think she may be an addict of the time reversal drug, or be under orders to use it in order to maintain her Companion status, but that’s a later post.)

B) It explains her “young and old” dichotomy pretty well. When we meet Nandi in HoG, the two were supposed to have gone through Companion training in House Maddrassa (sp?) together, but I think Nandi looks and seems considerably older than Inara, by about 10 years or more, maybe. Nandi even comments on this, saying something to her like, “you never change” or “you don’t look any different.” (Can’t remember the exact quote.) If Inara has been continuously using the time travel drug to keep herself young, she wouldn’t have aged, or else aged but not look any different. She also tells the Shepard in the pilot that he should “have the young doctor” look at his cuts. But to me, Simon and Inara seem to be the same age, at least physically. And she tells Mal in OoG that she likes a shuttle “with a few miles on it,” suggesting she’s been touring and piloting before as a Companion.

C) She seems to get upset as around birthdays and she tells Simon in “OoG” she doesn’t plan on dying. She could be trying to be immortal or have made herself immortal inadvertantly through use of the drug.

D) This is my own interpretation, but I think the biggest fictional influence on Firefly is the Dune Series of books by Frank Herbert. Joss has said that the original Dune is his favorite book, and there are a lot of fictional parallels between that Universe and the Firefly ‘verse. In particular: (from Wikipedia “Dune Universe” article) WARNING, SPOILERS AHEAD!!!!:








“In Dune, there is only one source of natural melange (spice), the planet Arrakis (colloquially known as Dune). Melange is a geriatric drug that gives the user a longer lifespan, greater vitality, and heightened awareness; it can also unlock prescience in some subjects, depending upon the dosage and the consumer's physiology
Although it is called "spice" and can be mixed with food, melange is truly a drug: it is physically addictive, it has psychotropic effects, and stopping its consumption causes death after a painful period of withdrawal (although taking spice daily extends one's life by hundreds of years). Due to its rarity and value, the group controlling spice production on Dune controls the fate of the Empire.”

I know you’re saying: okay, smarty-pants, explain why she takes out the vial the first time the Reavers threaten, but not the second! Honestly, I have no idea. Any other ideas? Please RESPOND!!!!

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Friday, November 11, 2005 3:04 PM

KUANGAORUI


You obviously put a lot of thought in to this but I think there is a much simpler answer, she is a murderer. In Out of Gas in the commentary the one of the writers says that's there a clue in to Inaras past in the scene when Simon starts to describe what happens when you suffocate and Inara doesn't want to hear it. Now that could be explained away that she doesn't want to know how she is going to die. However if she had smothered some one say a client or a teacher at the academe then she would also be hearing how the person that she killed died. Now as for the "suicide kit" it could be a self defense kit where if the situation were to get a bit rowdy she could put them down or at least put them to sleep. Not the most efficient way I know but it is just a theory. This theory also explains why she signed on with Serenity, a ship that spends most of the time on the on the edge of the solar system. Joss also says in Objects in Space that a psychic is as far as he is willing to go in to sci-fi, and time travel is pretty far out there. Joss also has the habit of setting up a complicated mystery, but giving it a simple answer.

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Friday, November 11, 2005 3:14 PM

CAUSAL


Oh. My God. That's just...well.

Honestly, which 'verse were you writing about?` Joss said the furthest out he was willing to go was psychics. I mean for goodness sake, we're still using projectile weapons! Time travel? I don't think so.

________________________________________________________________________
I wish I had a magical wish-granting plank.

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 8:43 AM

DONCOAT


I'm not buying time travel, either. How can a drug affect time? A magic hourglass, sure...

However, I think you may be on to something, but have just overcomplicated it. What if it's a life-extending drug, and Inara is actually several centuries old?

Now all your explanations make sense. She can't bear to make close emotional connections because she knows she'll have to watch her loved ones grow old, deteriorate, and die (see Heinlein's Time Enough for Love). She looks younger than Nandi because she hasn't aged since her days at the Academy.

Further, it could explain why she left the Academy. She can't remain anywhere for too long, nor can she accept any prominent public position, because eventually her lack of aging will be noticed. Who knows how many careers she's led, how many lives she's lived? Mal and the others would seem like infants to her.

She looks at the injector when the Reavers threaten because she's contemplating the irony of it: she's gone to great lengths to preserve her life, only to lose it in such a dreadful way. She is, perhaps, regretting her choice at last.

The "Immortal Inara" concept may not be the right answer, but I could buy it.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Ain't about you, Jayne. It's about what they need.

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 8:49 AM

CAUSAL


I'm not sure I can totally buy into the life-extending thing, but it's a damn sight closer than reverse time travel.

________________________________________________________________________
I wish I had a magical wish-granting plank.

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 9:01 AM

SIMONWHO


I've got my own theory which can be summed up in two words:

Blade Runner.

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 9:06 AM

CAUSAL


?

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I wish I had a magical wish-granting plank.

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 11:23 AM

DONCOAT


Inara's a replicant?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Ain't about you, Jayne. It's about what they need.

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 11:55 AM

MISSKITTEN


Quote:

Originally posted by DonCoat:
I'm not buying time travel, either. How can a drug affect time? A magic hourglass, sure...

However, I think you may be on to something, but have just overcomplicated it. What if it's a life-extending drug, and Inara is actually several centuries old?

Now all your explanations make sense. She can't bear to make close emotional connections because she knows she'll have to watch her loved ones grow old, deteriorate, and die (see Heinlein's Time Enough for Love). She looks younger than Nandi because she hasn't aged since her days at the Academy.

Further, it could explain why she left the Academy. She can't remain anywhere for too long, nor can she accept any prominent public position, because eventually her lack of aging will be noticed. Who knows how many careers she's led, how many lives she's lived? Mal and the others would seem like infants to her.

She looks at the injector when the Reavers threaten because she's contemplating the irony of it: she's gone to great lengths to preserve her life, only to lose it in such a dreadful way. She is, perhaps, regretting her choice at last.

The "Immortal Inara" concept may not be the right answer, but I could buy it.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Ain't about you, Jayne. It's about what they need.




I find that to be much more believable than time travelling. Upon being asked if she knows what in the vial, if it's a suicide kit, Morena answered that it's much worse. That's all we know.

*~*~*

"Joss, if you kill him now I'll stuff a compression coil up your ass sideways!"
~ Kaylee, "Serenity in 2000 words or less"

Kaylee's the perfect woman!

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 12:56 PM

TRAY


i'm a little surprised no one else has considered this possibility (or maybe you all have and have already dismissed it on another thread), however my suggestion comes in three parts.
-Morena said when asked that it was a truly horrible thing
-in one episode the captain says that the only way to survive seeing the savagery of the Reavers is to become one (I would also surmise that the only people the Reavers would "leave alone" on a ship would be one of their own kind), and...
-we know through the movie that a chemical was used to "pacify" the people of Miranda.

i am suggesting of course that this vial could have a chemical that could result in the same consequenses should someone take it. now i realize that she obviously cannot know that the Reavers were created by the alliance, or that the particular drug they used caused the catastrophy on Miranda, or even that Miranda exists, but who's to say the drug, or a facsimily thereof might not have leaked out. afterall, she never believes, like some of the crew and members of the alliance, that the Reavers are just stories...anyways, that's just a shot in the dark, i'll let everyone tear that theory apart now! :)

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 1:05 PM

BELACGOD


There is a fanfic on this site in which Inara, on the way to meet a client who likes exceptionally rough sex, takes a drug that dulls her sensations and responses so she'll be able to satisfy the client without feeling too much pain or injuring herself (at least if I recall it correctly--I couldn't even say which category of fic it was in). Perhaps this drug inspired the other one, and she's planning to go out fighting.

Personally, life-extension and time-travel seem to me to be too wacky sci-fi.

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 4:15 PM

KUANGAORUI


Quote:

Originally posted by Belacgod:
Personally, life-extension and time-travel seem to me to be too wacky sci-fi.



Me too, but she is running from some thing. Mal asked as much in Out of Gas, and in Hart of Gold Nandi said it was a shock that se left so I can only see it being something drastic that happened. But the show is too "down to earth" (figure of speech) to go in to time travel or have some youth drug.

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 8:23 PM

YORG


I thought it was a suicide kit at first as well.

But since it isn't I had to think it was something else.

If it was a life extension drug, what would be the point of it if you're going to be torn to shreds? None.

Time travel? Although the idea isn't bad, it doesn't fit the firefly verse. Sorry, no offense.

Anesthetic to dull senses? Possibly, that could work.


My ideas:

1. A coma drug to make it seem as if she was dead so the reavers would leave her alone.

2. A highly horrible, deadly infectious disease. If she's gonna die, she's gonna make sure she takes as many of them as possible with her.

3. Super steriods. Afterall, she does have some weapons training, so juicing herself and fighting back might be plausible. A companion might have something like that to prevent someone from forcing entry into her quarters and raping her. Which could also be why she's kind of hiding from her past. Maybe beat the holy hell out of some client who wanted more than he paid for. Or maybe she had been raped before and now carried protection with her.

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Saturday, November 12, 2005 8:47 PM

KHYRON


Quote:

Originally posted by Belacgod:
Personally, life-extension and time-travel seem to me to be too wacky sci-fi.



I think some of you people are missing the point of this thread. I'd be very surprised if the original poster was being serious. I for one found his "theories" very funny, and I think that was the way they were meant to be.

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Monday, November 14, 2005 12:51 PM

THIEFJEHAT


It seems as the months go by and I come to this site, the subject of "Inaria's secret" has come up again and again. When I first posted my analysis regarding it, it was old news then:

http://www.fireflyfans.net/thread.asp?b=4&t=8747

The Cliff Notes are as follows:

1. Inara is terminal and dying.
2. She is much older than she appears.
3. She left Sihnon by her own choice, but she did not want to leave.

Of course this thread focuses on the needle issue, but it usually gets lumped into the overarching "Inara's past" issue.




Do not fear me. Ours is a peaceful race, and we must live in harmony.

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Tuesday, November 15, 2005 6:41 PM

SLAYERCHICK


Having just watched Firefly on DVD completely through, i noticed a few things which has lead me to agree with the "Inara having a terminal illness idea". Though it is probably rehash from teh old thread, for the people who have not read it yet, here are MY observations:

1.) Why would Inara have left, as Nandi had said, when she was in line to take over at the Companion House? It was even stated that she had been aiming her sights on the position as well. It would make sense that, if she were diagnosed with an illness of some kind, she would realize that she couldn't continue her old life, hence fleeing for freedom on Serenity. Also, explains her insistence on keeping her and Mal's relationship strictly professional (lying through her teeth, btw :D)

2.) In Objects in Space, when Rivier is "reading their minds", it seems to me that in both Simon and Jayne's cases, they were thinking things which they had either said previously or were going to say later in the ep. (Book then has an interesting quote which leads me to some conclusion that he may have arrested an innocent man, spurring him on to join the monestary) Anyway, Inara says something to the effect of "Just tell me. I'm a big girl, I can handle it." Is she reffering to mal's feelings, or referring back to the revelation of her illness?

3.) In Ariel, when Inara returns from her doctor's visit, she responds to questions about how it went with "Same as last year." Not "Fine" or "good". I think if she is really dying, this wouldbe a normal reaction to answer with.

4.) Futhermore, if Joss indeed said that it was NOT a suicide drug in the pilot episode, it would stand to assume that perhaps it was some kind of medication? Maybe for the pain...which would also agree with the idea that she would take it to dull any pain.

5.) Nothing to do with the show itself, but morena Baccarin, in several interviews, has stated that she'd hate to have Mal and Inara get together, because the chemistry in their sexual tension would be gone. She also said that if they did get together, it would be best for one of them to die. Maybe reading too much into it, but since both Joss AND Morena know the entire backstory of Inara, it could be argued that she'd just teasing us with hints we're not even aware of!

-----

Not sure how great the arguement was, but I hope it gives you all something to think about!


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Tuesday, November 15, 2005 7:11 PM

GIANTEVILHEAD


It could be a cosmetic drug. She could have some manner of disfiguring disease and she needs the drug to stave it off.

It could be a poison or STD. Inara said that she supported unification, maybe she was once employed by the Alliance as an assassin, she takes whatever’s in the vial and transfers some sort of disease or toxin into the person she has sex with.

"I swallowed a bug." -River Tam

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Tuesday, November 15, 2005 7:29 PM

KUANGAORUI


I like the assassin idea. Maybe she was in some government program similar to River and that's why she left Sihnon.

****************************************
You know what's bad? Animal testing.
You know what's worse? Nuclear testing.
You know what's even worse than that? Nuclear animal testing!!! When will they learn?
****************************************

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Tuesday, November 15, 2005 10:54 PM

GIANTEVILHEAD


Maybe Inara is not who she seems. Companions are supposed to be based on Geisha. Young girls were bought and trained by Geisha houses. It is possible that the Companion guilds do the same thing. Perhaps Inara was never trained by a Companion guild. Maybe she was just a regular prostitute and acquired the status of Companion through illegitimate means. It is also possible that she contracted an STD as a regular prostitute and the syringe is a drug that represses it.

"I swallowed a bug." -River Tam

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Wednesday, November 16, 2005 12:56 AM

RAPTORED


Hi guys. Thanks for responding! I would have posted earlier but I have a spotty Internet connection....sigh

Anyway, I was serious when I posted this, but I knew the idea was shaky enough that I needed other ideas, and you guys gave really good feedback.


Okay, so probably no time travel. I'm just interested in why she pulls the box out at "that" particular moment before the Reavers attack? Surely there's a significance to why it appears then and at no other time?

My only other thought is maybe we're approaching this the wrong way? Maybe she doesn't want to "use" whatever is in the box, but needs to find a way to destory it so the Reavers don't get ahold of it? Any ideas?

"Where the hell is my spaceship?!"

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Wednesday, November 16, 2005 4:28 AM

ENGINEANGEL


she is not a murderer, and joss would never do time travel. i like the idea that it is something that keeps her young (lots of good evidence there) but then why would she take it out during the near-miss reaver passing?

i like doncoat's idea
Quote:


written by doncoat
What if it's a life-extending drug, and Inara is actually several centuries old?


don't know about "several-centuries" old but, life-extending drug would probably work. doncoat gave some good evidence for that as well:
Quote:


She looks at the injector when the Reavers threaten because she's contemplating the irony of it: she's gone to great lengths to preserve her life, only to lose it in such a dreadful way. She is, perhaps, regretting her choice at last.


verygood doncoat! you rock!

i will add to this in a bit.

keep flyin'
EngineAngel

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Wednesday, November 16, 2005 5:25 AM

LILKRISTY


Quote:

she is not a murderer,


Why not? I could see it. I wouldn't think she'd be a cold blooded muderer who kills for fun. But I can see her killing with the right motovation. I could even imagine that if she believed it was nessessary she could kill coldly and with percision. Maybe poision could be her weapon of choice. Maybe a client was threatening her or blackmailing her and she slipped something into his tea. Oh or maybe someone was trying to control her. In Shindig it's after Mal makes that speech about her she thinks following hte rules will buy her a nice life even if it makes her a slave that she leaves. Except Inara dosen't really follow the rules does she? Is apparent that a Companion on a ship like Serenity is very unusual. She apparently didn't do what was expected of her and become House Priestess. She dosne't shun Nandi like the Guild instructs.

Ok I'm off and running on a rabbit trail so I'll stop.

I can also see her being able to hide it (a murder) up to a point. Maybe she left because it was about to come out.

Maybe the vial is an STD to infect the Reavers. Don't know.

Really old Inara might work, but the looking at the vial and considering the irony thing just dosen't play for me, especially in light of the actresses cmments about it being something really awful. But then again maybe she's getting ready to destory it so the Reavers can't get a hold of it because extended life reavers would be pretty horrific.

Some really thought provoking comments here. Ya'll really got me to considering.

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Saturday, November 19, 2005 10:48 AM

RISAPHOENIX


i think one of the biggest things ive noticed about the show is the fact that its not hugely way out scifi, lasers are used sparingly, theres no faster then light travel. For a sci fi show, its actually pretty low tech. I dont think that if its creators turned away from lasers, theyd really go with time reversal. Thats pretty far out, especially when everything seems to indicate that Joss Whedon was going for a much more realistic, low techish scifi show.


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Saturday, November 19, 2005 11:59 AM

SFFAZ


Quote:

Originally posted by slayerchick:
Having just watched Firefly on DVD completely through, i noticed a few things which has lead me to agree with the "Inara having a terminal illness idea".




i reluctantly and with much sadness in my heart agree with this theory as it fits my view of joss whedon's firefly and his writing/producing - integrity is the closest thing i can come up with, he won't play false by introducing time-travel or, i believe, no life-extension/immortality without more set-up in the 13 episodes of Firefly. sadness becoz

Select to view spoiler:


after book's and wash's death in the BDM

i dont wanna see inara or any BDH's death in the next incarnation, movie/tv series/miniseries/straight to DVD. s'like after buffy's mom died the last thing i was expecting was so many second-tieer characters dying in seaon 6 and 7. still hard for me to watch those episodes on DVD, especially season 7 finale. that's very saddening to watch for me.

Hin

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Saturday, November 19, 2005 12:22 PM

JOSSISAGOD


Quote:

Originally posted by DonCoat:
I'm not buying time travel, either. How can a drug affect time? A magic hourglass, sure...

However, I think you may be on to something, but have just overcomplicated it. What if it's a life-extending drug, and Inara is actually several centuries old?

Now all your explanations make sense. She can't bear to make close emotional connections because she knows she'll have to watch her loved ones grow old, deteriorate, and die (see Heinlein's Time Enough for Love). She looks younger than Nandi because she hasn't aged since her days at the Academy.

Further, it could explain why she left the Academy. She can't remain anywhere for too long, nor can she accept any prominent public position, because eventually her lack of aging will be noticed. Who knows how many careers she's led, how many lives she's lived? Mal and the others would seem like infants to her.

She looks at the injector when the Reavers threaten because she's contemplating the irony of it: she's gone to great lengths to preserve her life, only to lose it in such a dreadful way. She is, perhaps, regretting her choice at last.

The "Immortal Inara" concept may not be the right answer, but I could buy it.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Ain't about you, Jayne. It's about what they need.



The life extending drug thing could also explain why she decided to leave "Serenity" at the end of the series. However, I also buy the terminal illness theory. I guess I'll never know now!

JOSSIS(most deffinantly)AGOD

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Monday, November 21, 2005 10:20 PM

GIANTEVILHEAD


Inara may have left the Companion Guild because some dark secret of the guild drove her away. Prostitutes have been used as spies for as long as espionage has existed. Perhaps the guild train companions to “acquire” secrets from their clients. Maybe that’s how the guild retains their power, maybe that’s how they gained that power in the first place. Perhaps the guild became so socially and politically powerful through extortion, using secrets acquired from clients belonging to the higher echelons of various governments.

"I swallowed a bug." -River Tam

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Tuesday, November 22, 2005 11:31 AM

GEDEON


Hey Raptored,

I like the way you think, but as you can see, theories are falling one by one.

Steroids is still there though. Whatever her past holds, I see Inara as chosing the right weapon for the right conflict. Using sarcasm against guns don't work, guns against tanks don't work...

Poison or STD to fight Reavers? I don't see it. That's inefficient.

My opinion on it is that she is ready for battle. But she's precious, a beautiful body, and battle usually leaves scars. She doesn't want to fight, but she's certainly ready for it.

Then again, Joss Whedon is stranger than both fiction and reality, so I expect pretty much anything.

Gedeon

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Tuesday, November 22, 2005 12:05 PM

QUEENOFTHENORTH


Is there any real evidence that Inara is terminally ill/dying? Cuz I just don't see it. Any terminal illness I've heard of has some symptoms that show themselves. A terminally ill/dying person doesn't usually look perfectly healthy and robust, nor are they usually strong enough to fight against an Operative (even if she did get her butt kicked). Not to mention I don't see the Guild allowing her to continue as a Companion if she is terminally ill/dying. I'm not saying it's impossible, just that I don't see it.

Like books? Go to this thread: http://www.fireflyfans.net/thread.asp?b=2&t=14862
to find out how to buy mine!

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Tuesday, November 22, 2005 3:01 PM

GIANTEVILHEAD


The Companion Guild is based on the Geisha. Geisha houses bought girls and trained them from a young age. Perhaps the Companion Guild does the same thing, although the guild might have a habit of acquiring girls through less than legal means. Maybe that's why Inara left. Maybe one of the responsibilities of the High Priestess is to choose which girls are worthy of the Guild and buy them or perhaps acquire them through other means.

"I swallowed a bug." -River Tam

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Tuesday, November 22, 2005 3:41 PM

RIVERNOT


Quote:

Originally posted by Giantevilhead:
Maybe one of the responsibilities of the High Priestess is to choose which girls are worthy of the Guild and buy them or perhaps acquire them through other means.



I like this explaination of her leaving the Guild more than her having a terminal illness. If she left due to illness, why would they let her come back.

As for the syringe, I honestly have no clue.

The anti-aging idea is interesting. However, I really can't sink my teeth into it. Sure, Nandi says Inara hasn't changed and Nandi does look older, but Inara/Morena strikes me as being one of those "ageless beauties" who look roughly mid 20s to mid 30s for most of their lives. Also, Nandi was living under much harsher conditions, which would age her more than Inara in her gentler environment.

I like the deep coma idea, trick the reavers into thinking she's dead already. No fun. Hmmm. However, when the drug wears off, where would Serenity be? Wouldn't it be a reaver ship? So, she'd still be alive and still in reaver hands.

I also like the pshcyo killer bitch drug idea. Turn off the pain receptors, increase the adrenaline, become a berserkr, go down fighting.

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Tuesday, November 22, 2005 4:18 PM

IAMALEAFONTHEWIND


Like Captain said, you should read the other thread about what Tim Minear let slip. That's a far more wicked explination than anything anyone here has come up with, which would be fitting. It's why Joss is Joss. It's just so twisted that it would have to be him, and that's the "theory" I'm sticking with. Why would Tim lie about something like that? No reason.

"I don't wanna explode."

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Tuesday, November 22, 2005 6:09 PM

GEDEON


Quote:

Well isn't that special...



reference to:
CAPTAIN, posted Saturday, November 19, 2005 - 12:07

Tim revealed that there would be an episode where Inara is kidnapped by Reavers and uses some sort of bio-weapon to kill anyone who has sex with her, and in doing so, kills all the Reavers who rape her.


I don't like this. We are collectivly reaching for straws.

A flag went up when I imagined an episode involving intercourse as a weapon. Nice idea. How are you gonna film that? Can that episode evade censurship? I see so many problems with that storyline as an episode, I have to stop and start laughing. Think about it.

Point of fact: Morena Baccarin, when asked how she prepared for the role of a companion answered: Sex. I had a lot of sex.

Now I have to assume that people working on these projects have a wicked sense of humor in order to work with that crazy cast they have.

Permayhaps, this was a joke on Tim's part.

On the other hand, DON'T STOP THINKING. We don't know what was in that vial, but we might eventually. So keep up the theories. All this fun is retribution to all the fun FOX stole from us. It's people talking, it's gossip, ...

...but noone ends up hanging upside down...

Gedeon

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Tuesday, November 22, 2005 6:29 PM

GEDEON


Hey man,

I really didn't mean to bite your head off or anything. I thought it was an odd storyline, hard to produce as an episode. The apparent reference was to an episode with that contexte and, yeah, I'm a rebel and I had to say no.

New theory:

I don't accept the idea of time travel in the Firefly series. But what if...

A stimulant that heightens your senses, your metabolisme, and gives you the impression of slowing time so you move twice as fast as anyone... This is not new. Hellboy has this for Croenen. But this would be chemical, not magical
Gedeon

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Tuesday, November 22, 2005 6:42 PM

GEDEON


I kind of wrote you off for a few minutes, but it would appear that you have been rewritten...

You're right, they would go farther than before to suggest this, but it could be done.

Just look at River "feeling" the ship in Objects. That was a hard concept to portray but I think they pulled that off with flying colors.

thanks for pushing a limit I hadn't expected to push...

Gedeon

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Wednesday, November 23, 2005 7:35 AM

JSAATS


I think things like time travel are too exotic for Firefly and faster-than-light is also right out as I read somewheres that they didn't want to over complicate things with those damn chrystals or other such nonsense that would pull attention from the charactors or story. One self admitted thing about Joss is that he is no hard-core SF guy. An example of this came from the BDM when we found out that all those various worlds are in one system. I'm no astrophysicist, but the exsistance of such a system seems way too unrealistic. But it isn't my story.

I think that the idea of a death simulator has merit because of 'the Message' episode and because of the reaction of the reavers reaction when Mal shot that guy at the begining of the BDM. One reason to cause her contemplation when she removed the vial may be the fact that she may not have had enough for the entire crew or for that matter, have enough for more than herself. Inara has been portrayed as a very caring selfless person, and the thought of doing something so selfish, well, 'nough said.

As to why she she left the temple, I think it was a combination of a Kirk moment (AKA I'm captain of Enterprize and it just dosen't get any better than this; of course transpose it for Inara's point of view), and, she was bored! She's no paper flower and I see her having a similar background as Simon. If any of you has read 'Finding Serenity', a companion was a compilation of more than just Geisha, and both her attitude and bearing are anything but that of a slave. More like a preistess. My personal take is while she was at the companion temple, she may have realized that there was more to life than what was on the grounds so she exercised a prerogative and left. She may in fact go back one day and become head of her temple but that is not now. She may also realize that being head of her order is more than she is currently ready for.

The reason that she is in better condition than her friend Nandi may simply be the fact that Inara, as a licensed companion in good standing, has the ability and where-with-all to be able to access and afford coreworld medical facilities, while Nandi doesn't. And the concept of anagathic (anti-ageing) drugs are possible because we are currently able to understand why a body ages, but have yet to understand the triggers, or more importantly, how to circumvent them. That's the CURRENT state of genetics! who knows what they might be like in five hundred years! Of course the fact that Melinda Clark is ten years older than Morena Baccarin may count for something too, and the fact that appearance-wise they're about as exotic looking as each other may have affected the casting. Well this is just my buck (two cents adjusted for inflation)



(in a very panicked voice, both hands white knuckled on the control column) "It's O.K., I'm a leaf on the Wind...'

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Saturday, November 26, 2005 4:01 PM

RIVER6213


Time travel? You should be slapped just for even thinking that up.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2005 3:44 PM

CHESHIRE


*Movie Spoiler Below. Read at your own risk*

I think the vile held a liquid explosive, perhaps a safer form of Nitro (NitroPlus for the sake of this discussion). Think back to the BDM, and the exploding incense trick. If I remember correctly, Inara lit that up before she realized Mal was there; I think she was about to make an exit on her own. Wouldn't it be convenient if you could make things explode by giving them a light coating of NitroPlus? Just dip incense stick and BOOM.

How would a vile of NitroPlus be "much worse" then a suicide kit when being borded by Reavers? A big enough explosion (and I will assume that for the sake of argument that a whole vile of the stuff applied in the right way would cause a much bigger bang then a stick of incense) could potentially breach the hull, causing Serenity to decompress, and killing not just the Reavers, but the entire crew.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2005 4:03 PM

BASSGRAVI


I think the time-travle theory is debunked, but what if it was some sort of very communicable disease or something that would kill Inara and the Reavers, but save the crew? It seems farfetched because, well, how would the crew *not* get sick, too...but maybe it's workable.
Honestly, though I'll be happy with the answer from Joss's/Tim's brains rather than my own speculation; I just hope we actually *get* an answer...
otherwise the words "What was in that vial?" are going on my tombstone.

www.angelfire.com/realm2/bassgravi

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Tuesday, November 29, 2005 4:28 PM

TRAINEEALTERNATE


I have a slightly less reasonable explanation than actual time-travel, and a more interesting one, though it may not be a very Whedon-esque in its theory, it certainly is an interesting position.

Suppose that the drug does not really take a person through some big quantum mirror or rift or temporal displacement, but rather through their own life. Rather than physically moving through space and time, the drug can move a person through their lifetime experiences. Inara could have used it to travel into her own future for a single instance, and see whether she survived the attack.

This sort of thing was used classic sci-fi style in "Slaughterhouse-Five" (Kurt Vonnegut). In the book, the main character is caught in a time warp, and can only visit events that have happened or will happen in his life. Except...He has no control over when he travels, or 'when' he goes in his life. This, however does not offer much room at all for free will.

It might be possible that the drug can be used to induce 'trips' through one's life, if only for an instance, with no memory of the past or future events.

Though the idea is extremely anti-individualist, it offers a great deal of potential to explain what Inara does. Her strange behavior sometimes, the reasons that she lef the Academy, the way she "doesn't age" when she meets her friend, it can all be explained by her being able to change what part of her life she is in at will.

Just some incoherent ramblings, but they might mean something.

"That's why I never kiss them on the mouth."
"When do I get to get sexed up?!"
"This is my most favorite-est gun..."

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Wednesday, November 30, 2005 1:52 AM

SHINYONE


the sexual weapon theory is ridiculous re: the reavers. reavers have been done to death and I imagine that post final battle in Serenity there are few left in the verse. The next villains will be something new, and of course the two by twos with hands of blue.

Nandy says "how do you do it" with a certain knowing and probing look, ther is something to that non-aging theory...

A big Q. is to the nature of the guild. They are massivly powerful, an institution with spiritual leanings... it could be similar to the Bene Gesserit, with massive tentacles into all power structures..

why did Nandy leave? she left to live poor and dusty on a little moon serving barely educated men...

The guild educates and cultivates companions to such a level of sophistication they could theoretically work in many other areas .ie politics, but the guild seems bent on owning the women, developing their personal power only within the constraints of the guild. why is there no way out of it's clutches except to inhabit an outer moon?

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Wednesday, November 30, 2005 2:40 AM

GILTHANASS


Ok, I am going to try and bring it all together for a theory of my own. Assuming tim was telling the truth, and assuming the drug WAS in fact a chemical weapon that would kill any who had sex with her, where does that leave us? Well, enter into my flight of fancy for a moment.

The companion house is not what it seems. Someone said that it was a place to spy? I don't think that is the whole truth. The truth is, the companion house is controlled completely by the alliance, and is a front for assassins. Not all companions are assassins, only the most gifted ones, who are the most desirable.

Why do I think this? Well, think about it:

1) Companions are used by affluent people, meaning powerful. These people are going to be the ones that will start problems with the alliance if any is going to be started. This are people that will have large security forces to protect them. However, a companion can just walk right in.

2) Companions choose their own clients. There seems to be a greater need for companions then companions themselves. They are in the position to choose who they "service".

Now, imagine for a second there was a drug that would kill the person a companion was having sex with, but look like a heart attack. Would this be out of the ordinary? Probably not, as there are probably many older, out of shape men that are serviced. Having a heart attack during sex with a companion would not only be rather innocent looking, but the persons family might actually try and HIDE that fact, making it even harder for people to unravel what is actually happening.

If all of this was true, it would explain many things. The vial in the pilot would be her assassination kit. Why did inara choose to go to the outer rim? The answer is, quite simply, she didn't! She only found out that she was to be a choosen assassin (or even that there were assassins) late in her training. Before that, her plan was always to stay, but because she had to basically be a "sleeper" (pardon the pun) cell, she needed to have access to people that were most likely to be a thorn in the alliances side, namely the outer rim.

Why did inara have such a problem with Mal? Because mal was on the other side, and she knew nothing could ever work between them with her working for the alliance. She wanted to leave before he became a big enough thorn to warrent alliance attention, and wanted to avoid getting the order to kill him.

I don;t think she was a cold blooded killer, in fact I am not even sure if she ever HAS killed anyone, but I do think that may be her secret.

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Wednesday, November 30, 2005 11:14 PM

SHINYONE


gilthanass that is brilliant!!!

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Friday, December 2, 2005 6:25 PM

DUCKRANGLER


Quote:

Personally, life-extension and time-travel seem to me to be too wacky sci-fi.


I realize that Joss never mentioned it explicitly, but I see some similarities between the outer planets and R.A. Heinlein's "Future History" series, especially "Time Enough for Love." In that alternate universe, there really are "frontier planets" where settlers go when "civilized" planets get too crowded and civilized. I don't know if Joss meant for some of those similarities to happen, but a central theme of that series was also life extension. Not only through "selective breeding" by the Howards, but through medical procedures and drugs.

Mark

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Sunday, December 4, 2005 6:54 PM

GIRLASKEW


Possible theory from my husband...what if she was a plant for the Alliance? I mean, we are never really clear why she's on Serentiy in the first place. Perhaps the Alliance sent her there to spy on these two Browncoats and their crew. I know,so why has she not ratted them out? Well, she's clearly in love with Mal, and wants him to keep flying. Thats why she gets so mad about the whole Saffron thing and why she gets really upset when he sleeps with Julie Cooper Nichol(I forget the name of the character in HoG, that's her characters name on the OC.)Kind of a "do you know what I'm doing, for you" kind of thing. She's sticking her neck out, lying to the government and he just keeps goofing off on her. I donno, its an idea.

Or, or it's a drug that turns her into Alan Tudyk.

Some people juggle geese!- Hoban Washburn

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Sunday, December 4, 2005 7:12 PM

DUCKRANGLER


Quote:

Originally posted by Girlaskew:
Possible theory from my husband...what if she was a plant for the Alliance? I mean, we are never really clear why she's on Serentiy in the first place. Perhaps the Alliance sent her there to spy on these two Browncoats and their crew. I know,so why has she not ratted them out? Well, she's clearly in love with Mal, and wants him to keep flying. Thats why she gets so mad about the whole Saffron thing and why she gets really upset when he sleeps with Julie Cooper Nichol(I forget the name of the character in HoG, that's her characters name on the OC.)Kind of a "do you know what I'm doing, for you" kind of thing. She's sticking her neck out, lying to the government and he just keeps goofing off on her. I donno, its an idea.

Or, or it's a drug that turns her into Alan Tudyk.

Some people juggle geese!- Hoban Washburn



I've thought that if there's an Alliance spy, it's Shepherd Book.

Mark

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Monday, December 5, 2005 2:20 AM

DONCOAT


It stretches credulity to think Mal and Zoe pose enough of a threat to the Alliance that it'd be worth committing a spy to them.

River is another matter, as we've seen, but the timing of events indicates that neither Inara nor Book was after her. Inara was aboard Serenity long before Simon rescued River, and Book came aboard ahead of Simon (though on the same day). Besides, we already know of another of that day's passengers who actually was hunting River.

So Inara-as-Alliance-agent doesn't work for me, unless she's after something other than Mal or River.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Ain't about you, Jayne. It's about what they need.

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Thursday, December 22, 2005 10:10 PM

SHUTTLE2


You know what's weird?? While i was watching the pilot, I didn't think anything of the vile of liquid. Now i have to go watch it again.

ANd i don't know if this means anything, but at times i thought Inara looked, pale, or worn out sometimes. Especially in the movie Serenity. What do you think? It could be nothing.

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Thursday, December 22, 2005 10:15 PM

SHUTTLE2


Quote:

Originally posted by Giantevilhead:
Inara may have left the Companion Guild because some dark secret of the guild drove her away. Prostitutes have been used as spies for as long as espionage has existed. Perhaps the guild train companions to “acquire” secrets from their clients.



Maybe Inara was sent to keep tabs on Mal and Zoe for some unknown reason....

Hey, it could happen!


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Sunday, December 25, 2005 4:29 PM

SADARA


The whole theory, that the drug will put her into a deep coma, doesn't work for me.

Zoe: If they board us, they'll rape us to death, eat our flesh and sew our skin to their clothes. And if we're very, very lucky, they'll do it in that order.

The sick twisted mentality of the Reavers that I get from that quote suggests that if they were to find a death body, they wouldn't leave it alone. They'd probably do something nasty to it. Remember how they found those bodies on that passenger ship? All hung up on the ceiling like that? Inara would probably know how twisted the Reavers are, just from talking with the crew.

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Sunday, December 25, 2005 5:19 PM

BADGERGIRL


I, for one, am sticking with Tim's theory. It's perfectly logical, what with the advanced technology and medicine of the 'Verse, and as I'm sure it's been said before, it would jerk the Mal/Inara into place. Granted, it would have to be a really fast-acting drug, but I consider it completely possible.

Also, I agree with the theory that the Alliance brings up Companions to glean secrets or become assassins, but that they aren't aware of it during their training. Inara could have left because of that.

However, I do have another theory about why she left: Inara was servicing an Alliance officer (possibly very high-standing), and somehow, he died. Accidents like that can happen, but Inara is terrified. Hides the body, then leaves the House; Inara still has the approval of the Companion Guild because nobody ever found out about her secret.

---------
"Is there someone you are good at talking to?"

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