FIREFLY EPISODE DISCUSSIONS

Expanding the refined timeline

POSTED BY: JEWELSTAITEFAN
UPDATED: Wednesday, November 30, 2016 20:35
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Tuesday, January 8, 2008 7:50 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


After discussion of the nucleus of a timeline of our verse in another thread (b=4&t=31980), here I will try to provide an expanded version including key dates/periods referred to in BDS/BDM. This nucleus of time references was refined to eliminate or moderate perceived conflicts among canon date/time references.


There are a number of references which conflict greatly with other evidence. Mal's birthdate given as 1468 (making 31 year old Nathan playing 49 year old Mal) is one example. Another is River's data on Birth, institute enrollment, age in BDS/BDM. These conflicting items are not used.

Another timeline is available at
http://www.mts.net/~arphaxad/firefly.html

Another timeline similar to this, but derived from the originating scripts and original episode sequence before either was interfered with by the network, can be found here:
http://www.fireflyfans.net/mthread.asp?b=4&t=36140

Late Nov or early Dec 2493 - Simon Tam born (Simon's birthday in Out of Gas, year conjecture from actor Zac Efron's portayal of critical/focused age in Safe - seen post on 30 Nov 2016.)

Early August 2500 - River Tam is born, before 15 August. (River is 16 in Escape from Institute of BDM, and River-in-the-Box is 17 in Pilot Serenity.)

2505 or early 2506 - Reasearch Vessel crashed on and investigated Miranda, sent out signal (BDM, Mal states signal about 12 years old.)

2506 - Beginning of the War for Alliance Domination. War lasted 5 years. Could be August, but "5 years" is fairly vague.
October 2506 - River is playing the part of Independent Platoons while Simon tries to study at the Tam Estate (flahsback in Safe, "11 years earlier"). Even at age 6, River is very aware of the verse outside her immediate realm.

2509 or 2510 - River explains to Alliance teacher that Independents don't like Allince to meddle with them. (flashback as intro classroom scene of BDM - classmates are 12 year olds, River is at least 2 years younger than them, specified iin script).

February 2511 - Battle of Du-Khang (Seven years before The Message, flashbacks with Pvt Tracey.)
Late May 2511 - Battle of Serenity Valley on Hera starts. Lasts seven weeks. (May from BDM deleted scenes)
First week of July 2511 - Scene from beginning of Pilot Serenity, High Command gives up after 5 weeks of fighting, and Independents fight for 2 more weeks.
Mid July 2511 - Battle of Serenity Valley ends, about 2-3 weeks into July.
Late July 2511 - For a week of Peace negotiations, BoSV survivors lay dying on the Battlefeld, including Mal & Zoe. Third or fourth week of July. (from Pilot Serenity deleted scene 75). This shown in Pilot Serenity scene 1 (deleted scene).
Approx 12-17 August 2511 - Unification Day - End of the War for Alliance Domination. (6th Anniversary was celebrated in The Train Job.)

Late Nov - early Dec 2512 - Mal purchases Firefly transport ship (from Tim Minnear and David Soloman commentary in Out of Gas, "about 5 years ago").

Early/mid November 2513 - Jayne and Stitch Hessien work a heist on Higgin's Moon together, at least starting out together. Stitch ends up in a sweat box, being let out 4 years later in Jaynestown.

August 2514 - River enrolls at Institute (assuming enrollment still occurs at end of August, River just turned 14.)

October 2516 - Official records show Inara shipped out with Serenity here (from Commander Harken, Inara's exchange in Bushwhacked.)
Mid October 2516 - Jayne switches from Marco's crew to Serenity. (this entry disputed, derived from "man I met a year ago" line in OMR teaser.)

Late Dec. 2516 to mid Jan 2517 - Inara actually rents Shuttle I. (from "8 months" in TTJ, "a year" in OiS, Sheydra's "a year" in BDM deleted scenes/script)

April 2517 - sometime around this period, Kaylee's nethers experience some form of non-battery operated plaything.

Early August 2517 - River escapes Institute on Osiris, a day or week before Pilot. River is 16.
Approx 10-15 August 2517 - Pilot, 2 day Episode. River is 17. Starts 0800/0900 at Carrier salvage, to Persephone, then headed to Boros via Whitefall.
Approx 14-19 August 2517 - The Train Job, 1 or 2 day Episode. Starts at Unification Day Bar on world with 3 nearby moons, leaves atmo with ringed body in background, then to Niska's Skyplex orbiting Ezra and to towns Hancock and Paradiso.
Late Aug - mid Sept 2517 - Bushwhacked.
Approx 20-24 Sept 2517 - Shindig, 4 day Episode. Day 1 on Santo, days 2&3 on Persephone, Day 4 en route to Jiangyin.
Around 15 October 2517 - Safe, 1 day Episode. One day on Jaingyin.
18 Oct - 19 or 20 Oct 2517 - Our Mrs. Reynolds. Oct 18th on Triumph Settlement, then headed to Beaumonde, detoured to place Saffron escaped to with Shuttle II.
24 October 2517 - Scheduled to arrive Beaumonde (from Our Mrs. Reynolds).
7 November 2517 - Scheduled to depart Beaumonde (from Our Mrs Reynolds).
After 13 Nov - Jaynestown, 2-3 day Episode. Will deliver merchandise to Bernoulli by end of week. Jaynestown (Canton) on Higgin's Moon.
Late Nov - early Dec 2517 - Out of Gas, 1 day Episode. Starts after 19 Nov, arrive Greenleaf after 26 Nov.
Mid-late December 2517 - Ariel, 2-3 day Episode.

First half of January 2518 - War Stories, 1 or 2 day Episode. Starts on Ezra, ends up on Niska's orbiting Skyplex.
End of Jan or early Feb 2518 - Trash, 72 hour Episode. At least 3 weeks after War Stories. Starts off on empty rock, then to Bellerophon.
First week of February 2518 - The Message, 3 day Episode. Starts on Space Bazaar, chase and funeral on St. Alban's.
Mid February 2518 - Heart of Gold.
Late February 2518 - Objects in Space, 1 day Episode. Will arrive in New Melbourne in 3 days.
End of February 2518 - Those Left Behind, graphic novel. Starts in Constance. Inara arrives Training House, few hours from Haven, where Book ends up getting off.
Early April 2518 - Operative at Institute in BDM, few weeks of Fruity Oaty Bar braodcasts before Serenity on Lilac.
Late April 2518 - BDM, 2 days. Serenity on Lilac, then to Beaumonde, Haven, Training House, Haven, Miranda, Mr. Universe's place. River is 17.


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Tuesday, January 8, 2008 8:58 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Some notes from this newer view of things.

The apples Jayne buys from Ariel profits are around Christmas or New Year's Day. Maybe he was trying to make up for when River said "they took Christmas away" in Ariel.
Book is off ship in Ariel, around Christmas time.

There had been some discussion about the Battle of Du-Khang in The Message flashbacks being in conflict with the timing of Battle of Serenity Valley, BoDK was too early to be having a lot of Independent defeats. This seems to be resolved more now.

River is born in early August 2500, turns 14 in 2514 and then enrolls in Institute, is still 16 in escape scene of BDM (as specified in script), turns 17 in transit and is 17 in Pilot as specified in script, and is still 17 in BDM, as specified in script.

When Mal says in Objects in Space that they'll hit New Melbourne in 3 days, should we consider this to be Inara's destination - The Companion Training House? She said she was leaving in heart of Gold.
Original script shows New Melbourne actually was her destination, before the episode sequence was juggled around.

From early August 2517 Escape from Institute to early April 2518 is the 8 months the Operative states to Dr. Mathias.
From mid-August 2517 Pilot to Late April 2518 BDM is about 8 1/2 months, Mal says "8 months" in BDM.

When Inara tells Book in The Train Job that she's been aboard 8 months, this is more than 8 months and less than 9 months from the late-Dec 2516 to mid-Jan 2517 time frame. When Inara tells Jubal in Objects in Space that she's been aboard "a year" it is 13 or 14 months. When Sheydra mentions Inara was aboard "a year" in BDM deleted scenes, this is also 13 or 14 months. When Sheydra mentions "these last months" Inara has been at Training House, this would be end of February, March, and most of April.

When Simon says in Safe they have been aboard "more than 2 months" it is a tad more than 2 months instead of 4 months.

Because our BDH go to Beaumonde in early November 2517, and then go to Canton on Higgin's Moon for a job (Jaynestown) to deliver merchandise to Bernoulli, perhaps they got the job from Fanty & Mingo while on Beaumonde?

The discussion thread preceding this:
http://www.fireflyfans.net/thread.asp?b=4&t=31980

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Tuesday, January 8, 2008 11:59 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Also, why the other timeline states that the BDM spans a week of time is beyond me. Other than the River classroom scene and Operative at the Institute scene, and repair yard at the end, the rest of the BDM spans 2 days (a Sunday and Monday).

They start off with the Lilac heist, then quickly get to Beaumonde with Fanty & Mingo. Then to Haven, spending a day and evening at Haven. No time is specified yet regarding the travel from Beaumonde to Haven.
From Haven to Training House is "few hours" as stated by Mal, and then another few hours returning to Haven.
After the Operative and Mal at Training House, script and deleted scenes show the Operative abducts Fanty & Mingo, finding out the places Mal "goes to ground" through beating, and dispatches Alliance craft to destroy these places before Serenity gets back to Haven. This indicates Fanty & Mingo are within a few hours of both Training House, which was a few hours from Haven. This shows Beaumonde is not too many hours from Haven itself.
On destroyed Haven, Mal tells Kaylee she has 2 hours to make Serenity ready for the trip to Miranda. Then it's only a few hours to Miranda.
After Miranda, River states it is a 4 hour trip at maximum burn to Mr Universe.
The only passage of a day shown is dusk and evening on Haven Sunday, then morning upon return to Haven.
Leaving the sunny side of Lilac, landing on the dark side of Beaumonde, and going to the bright side of Haven does not require a day of passage, only several hours of travel time.


Maybe the time at the repair yard afterwards is the week mentioned.

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Wednesday, January 9, 2008 7:30 PM

CHARLIEBZ


First off, let me just say I'm glad I'm not the only one obsessed with Firefly timelines!

I agree with the majority of the dates you've worked out with the following exceptions.

1. I think Jayne came on board after Inara. Nothing solid to base this assumption on except the order of flashbacks in OoG. Also, in Serenity, Jayne says something like "I didn't sign on with this crew for the sights" which gave me the impression he hadn't been on Serenity long.

2. I think the events of the BDM lasted longer than 2 days. (Although the fact that River wears the same dress may support your idea.) I think there's just more travel time between planets than you're allowing for.

You've got to factor in time it took for the Operative to suss out all the info on Mal, get to Inara, "persuade" her to wave Mal. She is wearing different clothes in her wave from when she first met the Operative which indicates more time passed. (Of course, she does like wearing different outfits so this might not mean anything )

There was also enough travel time from Haven to Miranda to allow the crew an opportunity to "sleep."

Plus, the Operative had to spend time getting Fanty & Mingo to give up Mal. And, I don't think Fanty & Mingo would know all of Mal's hiding places - I mean, who goes around broadcasting that info to criminal businessmen? I tend to think the Operative found Haven through Book as a registered passenger and traced his current whereabouts through the Abbey.

I also think we can't base time assumptions on daytime versus nighttime on different planets. Serenity time has got to be completely independent of so-called local time which has got to give the feeling of jet lag. No wonder Mal's so grouchy!


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Wednesday, January 9, 2008 7:50 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Quote:

Originally posted by CharlieBZ:
First off, let me just say I'm glad I'm not the only one obsessed with Firefly timelines!

I agree with the majority of the dates you've worked out with the following exceptions.

1. I think Jayne came on board after Inara. Nothing solid to base this assumption on except the order of flashbacks in OoG. Also, in Serenity, Jayne says something like "I didn't sign on with this crew for the sights" which gave me the impression he hadn't been on Serenity long.


This sole reference is from OMR "man I met a year ago" line. Not solid, and no other reference to this found (other than less than 3 1/2 years ago). I would more likely delete this timeline entry than change to elswhere, absent further data. Since I posted this for others to use and refer to, I might just do this deletion.
Quote:


2. I think the events of the BDM lasted longer than 2 days. (Although the fact that River wears the same dress may support your idea.) I think there's just more travel time between planets than you're allowing for.


Mal specifies "few hours" from Haven to Training House, and then the same would be returning. And the Operative does all the work after leaving Training House and before the "few hours" trip back to Haven - meaning beaumonde couldn't be that far away.
Quote:


You've got to factor in time it took for the Operative to suss out all the info on Mal, get to Inara, "persuade" her to wave Mal. She is wearing different clothes in her wave from when she first met the Operative which indicates more time passed. (Of course, she does like wearing different outfits so this might not mean anything )


From the time of Maidenhead on Beaumonde to the Operative getting to Training House - this occured while Serenity on Haven, day or dusk until nighttime, when Mal went to sleep before being awoken for Inara's wave.

Quote:


There was also enough travel time from Haven to Miranda to allow the crew an opportunity to "sleep."


Didn't see sleep - they were pretty wired going through the reaver armada, and they had already said they were the closest to Miranda, in the Burnham Quadrant. Where did they get sleep?
Quote:


Plus, the Operative had to spend time getting Fanty & Mingo to give up Mal. And, I don't think Fanty & Mingo would know all of Mal's hiding places - I mean, who goes around broadcasting that info to criminal businessmen? I tend to think the Operative found Haven through Book as a registered passenger and traced his current whereabouts through the Abbey.

I also think we can't base time assumptions on daytime versus nighttime on different planets. Serenity time has got to be completely independent of so-called local time which has got to give the feeling of jet lag. No wonder Mal's so grouchy!



Day versus night is arbitrary, based upon whether Serenity lands on the dark side or the sun side of a planet at any given time. The only clear usage of this in on Haven, the mining camp is rotating on Haven at the same position and goes from daytime (Serenity landing) to nightime fireside chat with Book, then leaving for Training House, and returning to daylight when Book dies.

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Wednesday, January 9, 2008 8:10 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


As I recall, when Serenity leaves Haven the scene is supposed to show the flesh burning off the bodies strapped to the nose, happening when leaving atmo. This leaves just the skeletons on the outside, and then the scene goes right into passing through the reaver armada. Am I incorrect here? I don't have the scripts with me.

I'm willing to change my viewpoint, but I don't see contrary evidence so far.

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Wednesday, January 9, 2008 8:39 PM

ASARIAN


My days of not taking you seriously have certainly come to a middle. :)

Serious now, your timeline don't look half bad. But apparently you've decided to utterly ignore the found BDM prop: the data pad with important dates on it, such as River's birthdate. I'm not sure so this prop can be waived away as a goof so easily. I would buy it from an other director, but we're talking about Joss here, the man who actually had the letters in "Safe" contain the story line from a shooting script (the stuff about them having had a vacation at the lake, last year). So, I'd say Joss is not one to be overly careless with such details.

Having said that, that prop lists November 2516 as the date River escapes. And I can, my own self, not make that date construe with ANY other info we have. So, maybe that prop is indeed best let go of. As long as we're aware that that's what we're doing.

It's unlikely the BDM takes place in only 2 days, though. I'm with a week, at least (especially considering all the leg-work the Operative has to do to get to Mal and his).

Oh, and there's sleep alright. :) Right before Mal receives wave from Inara, he's seen waking up:

WASH
Mal! You up?

I got a wave. I'm gonna
bounce it down to you.

Mal wakes up, there. It's an especially subtle scene, since River, at the same time, wakes up too, from her "Cut them down!" dream.


--
"Mei-mei, everything I have is right here." -- Simon Tam

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Wednesday, January 9, 2008 9:59 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Quote:

Originally posted by asarian:
My days of not taking you seriously have certainly come to a middle. :)

Serious now, your timeline don't look half bad. But apparently you've decided to utterly ignore the found BDM prop: the data pad with important dates on it, such as River's birthdate. I'm not sure so this prop can be waived away as a goof so easily. I would buy it from an other director, but we're talking about Joss here, the man who actually had the letters in "Safe" contain the story line from a shooting script (the stuff about them having had a vacation at the lake, last year). So, I'd say Joss is not one to be overly careless with such details.

Having said that, that prop lists November 2516 as the date River escapes. And I can, my own self, not make that date construe with ANY other info we have. So, maybe that prop is indeed best let go of. As long as we're aware that that's what we're doing.


Correct. The data on this prop does not match any known other date/time reference. The BDM River escape scene states River is 16. From the Pilot script, River-in-the-Box is 17. Next Episodes are aired with intro subtitle proclaiming 2517. If River was born in 2501 she would be turning 16 in 2517 and would not be 17 until 2518. If River was born in Dec 2500, she would still not be 17 as specified in Pilot script until December 2517, yet the Pilot is at least 2 months before October 2517. That prop also lists a date of June 2518, which would put many dates in the timeline out of tolerance. In short, since the only plausible date on that prop is the Institute entrance date, I have discounted entirely the data from this prop. If other evidence shines light upon this, we can reconsider it's validity. If Joss specifies a timeline someplace, I would by all means accept that.
I should in honesty mention that I probably understand where that set of dates results from, but it still does not mesh with the existing dates already known, so I still discount the prop data.
Quote:


It's unlikely the BDM takes place in only 2 days, though. I'm with a week, at least (especially considering all the leg-work the Operative has to do to get to Mal and his).

Oh, and there's sleep alright. :) Right before Mal receives wave from Inara, he's seen waking up:

WASH
Mal! You up?

I got a wave. I'm gonna
bounce it down to you.

Mal wakes up, there. It's an especially subtle scene, since River, at the same time, wakes up too, from her "Cut them down!" dream.


--
"Mei-mei, everything I have is right here." -- Simon Tam



That sleep, as mentioned above, is after the nighttime fireside chat with Book on Haven (Book alive), and then they head off to Training House. That is the one time there is sleep, showing the passing of a day. After Book is dead on Haven, going to Miranda - no sleep.

In the "few hours" that Serenity goes from Training House to Haven, the Operative eradicates the mining camp. I don't see where this shows that the Operative is taking his time - contrarily, this seems to indicate he is very quick, ruthless, efficient. Not fiddling around. Thus the conclusion Beaumonde is a few hours away as well.

This also helps us understand why Mal needs to make such a harsh decision so quickly. Wait too long and the Operative will get them, there is no time to spare, they must go now. The Alliance will not let them live, so they must take action now, or forfeit the remaining hours of their lives.

I should have clearly stated that I was providing this summary of timeline for use among firelfyfans. I'd assumed some of the data might help fanfic writers, even if I don't get over there much. And also to better understand the interactive dynamics of various relationships among the Independants, Alliance, characters, etc. I did not intend this to be a decree or tablet of Commandments. If this is not agreed upon by most here, it has lost it's purpose. Hopefully it will be able to stand as a reference for the data we (mostly) agree upon - not that it won't have some detracters.
So enjoy, and please feel free to point out obvious corrections. I had hoped the discussion thread would iron out most of these.

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Thursday, January 10, 2008 12:27 AM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Quote:

Originally posted by CharlieBZ:

You've got to factor in time it took for the Operative to suss out all the info on Mal, get to Inara, "persuade" her to wave Mal. She is wearing different clothes in her wave from when she first met the Operative which indicates more time passed. (Of course, she does like wearing different outfits so this might not mean anything )


This is a deleted scene, available on CE. From viewing Maidenhead video, to I.D. Mal and Zoe and find Inara took a couple minutes. He is not messing around.
Quote:


I also think we can't base time assumptions on daytime versus nighttime on different planets. Serenity time has got to be completely independent of so-called local time which has got to give the feeling of jet lag. No wonder Mal's so grouchy!




The discussion of a standardized calendar has not happend yet, that I've seen.
We were assuming all times and time data was based upon Earth-that-was time and calendar.

Do I think every planet in the verse orbited the sun once per 365 days? no. Had a moon orbiting each planet 13 times per year? spun on it's axis once very 24 hours? no.
Is it possible they all held to a standardized calendar specifically based upon Earth-that-was regardless of what their own planetary body was doing? Appears to be the case.

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Friday, January 11, 2008 4:24 PM

FREELANCERTEX


Wait...time LINE?? Time isn't made out of lines; it is made out of circles. That is why clocks are round!!!!!
I'm sorry, I needed to have an immature moment. Won't happen again.

__________________________
Have you ever wondered why in a dream you can touch a falling sky?
Or fly to the heavens that watch over you?

"I am a leaf on the wind, watch how I soar."

A man is least himself when he speaks in his own person. Give him a mask and he will show you his true self.

You can't take the sky from me...

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Sunday, January 13, 2008 7:54 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Added 2 days onto the range for TTJ. Kaylee finished surgery night of first day in Pilot, well enough to be carried to engine room on 2nd day, looking kinda wan. Mal said she was reviving fast, Doc knows his work. In early TTJ under console, and particularly in the cargo bay during winching operations, she still looks quite wan. Seems like 2 days is enough advancement for her to be this well.
If others disagree, there is lots of room in this part of the timeline.
In Pilot, Simon was very concerned River would have shock from not staying asleep for another week, so it's not too far off to conjure Simon put River to sleep for a few more days to reduce shock to her system. But more than a few days would be pushing it.

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Sunday, January 13, 2008 8:23 PM

FREELANCERTEX


...she looked fine to me...*bewildered look*


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Sunday, January 13, 2008 8:41 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Remember when Simon comes to the cargo bay, asks what she's doing? She says Oh, crime! We're doing crime.

The script said she's supposed to be shy, maybe due to Simon. When I see that, her look could be shyness, but when somebody mentioned her recuperation tiem, that look she had immediately popped into my head as a wan look, like she's not completely 100%. I could be off, let me know when you see it again. She's standing and moving OK, just the look on her face seemed different.
Regardless, because she had such a fast recovery due to Simon's doctorin skills, a couple days seems like enough for her to be back on her feet.

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Monday, January 14, 2008 2:35 AM

ASARIAN


Quote:

Originally posted by jewelstaitefan:

In the "few hours" that Serenity goes from Training House to Haven, the Operative eradicates the mining camp. I don't see where this shows that the Operative is taking his time - contrarily, this seems to indicate he is very quick, ruthless, efficient. Not fiddling around. Thus the conclusion Beaumonde is a few hours away as well.


Define the span of the 'BDM'. :) The Operative says:

OPERATIVE
Young miss,
I need you to go to work now.
I think I may have
a long way to travel.

So, I'm thinking begin BDM to when the Operative catches up with them, at least a week. Nothing in his words indicate he will find them within a few hours. If you do not count the time between the Operative at the Institute and the heist, then things shorten dramatically, of course.

N.B. I think -- very tentatively -- that I found out at what TIME the Maidenhead scene takes place: 7:14 PM, local time. I gleaned it off the LIVE feed from the Fruity Oaty Bar commercial:



Point of interest? This could be a DATE, too: July 14th (with a time index of 02.41.26 behind it). That would bring the prop's data pad date of June 4, 2518, as date when the Operative met with Dr. Mathias, back into the picture again, as 4 weeks for between when the Operative visits the Institute and the Maidenhead scene, seems a fair plausible amount of time.

Quote:


I should have clearly stated that I was providing this summary of timeline for use among firelfyfans. I'd assumed some of the data might help fanfic writers, even if I don't get over there much. And also to better understand the interactive dynamics of various relationships among the Independants, Alliance, characters, etc. I did not intend this to be a decree or tablet of Commandments. If this is not agreed upon by most here, it has lost it's purpose. Hopefully it will be able to stand as a reference for the data we (mostly) agree upon - not that it won't have some detracters.


And I should have clearly stated that I appreciate your endless work in this area. But messing with the timeline is always hazardous. Haven't you seen enough SF for that? :) Seriously, though, I tend to err on the side of caution when it comes to making such changes. And you, your own self, keep changing it, too. And that's a good thing; it's called 'refining', as you, erm, called it. :) But it also means that, like crime and politics, the situation remains largely fluid until we find truly solid evidence to the contrary.


--

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Thursday, January 17, 2008 9:43 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Quote:

And I should have clearly stated that I appreciate your endless work in this area. But messing with the timeline is always hazardous. Haven't you seen enough SF for that? :) Seriously, though, I tend to err on the side of caution when it comes to making such changes. And you, your own self, keep changing it, too. And that's a good thing; it's called 'refining', as you, erm, called it. :) But it also means that, like crime and politics, the situation remains largely fluid until we find truly solid evidence to the contrary.



I wanted to let this comment marinate in the thread for a bit before responding.
The reason I posted these in discussion threads was to find out how many - if any - would be offended by this work, and to obtain the help of other fans who were aware of other time references I missed, and cull other data from them, including conflicts between canon data. It was clear that some items did not fit in any canon timeline, like the found data prop regarding River DoB, etc. and Mal's 49 years of age.
These discussions have been helpful, and I did not consider the proposed timeline to be set in stone while these conflicts were being discussed. Currently, it appears that the above posted timeline is very much in the most consistent state among and concurring with all available canon data. Not that some people will not have some various disputes with it, but unless Joss (or Tim) specifies differently, it seems to resolve most of the percieved discontinuities in available data.
It has been changed and altered solely in response to legitimate data mentioned in these threads. I do not expect to alter it upon whims, but will if other data is revealed and is credible. I feel this is the most credible timeline available, until canon sources specify otherwise.

The exeption so far still standing is the vague time of Jayne's joining the crew.

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Thursday, January 17, 2008 10:23 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


I did not make a clear breakdown of the dates of the Battle of Serenity Valley. There seems some confusion or unclear references to the various stages of it.

Apparently:
It lasted 7 weeks.
For 5 weeks the Independent High Command supported the troops.
The last 2 weeks were after the cease fire but before the formal end of hostilities.
Not sure if the end of hostilities of BoSV was the same end of hostilites of the entire war (Unification Day), or if U-Day was slightly after the negoitiated surrender of Serenity Valley.


So, did BoSV start 7 weeks before the date celebrated as U-Day?
Was the scene in the beginning of the Pilot 5 weeks into BoSV and 2 weeks before the end of Hostilities?
What do you folks think? or does it not really matter?

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Friday, January 18, 2008 4:12 PM

ASARIAN


Quote:

Originally posted by jewelstaitefan:

Not sure if the end of hostilities of BoSV was the same end of hostilites of the entire war (Unification Day), or if U-Day was slightly after the negoitiated surrender of Serenity Valley.


In Bushwhacked, Harken says, "Some say after Serenity, the Browncoats were through. That the war really ended in that valley." His "really ended" clearly suggest the war ended a short time after the Battle of Serenity Valley was lost. So, I'd say U-Day was slightly after the negoitiated surrender of Serenity. Likely no more than two weeks. Probably even less.

Quote:


So, did BoSV start 7 weeks before the date celebrated as U-Day?
Was the scene in the beginning of the Pilot 5 weeks into BoSV and 2 weeks before the end of Hostilities?
What do you folks think? or does it not really matter?


The start/end of the Battle of Serenity Valley certainly matters. The Operative's data pad (deleted scenes, BDM) clearly reads: "May 2511 on Hera." So, where you're getting "Late July 2511" from is unclear to me; save to have it support your notion that The Train Job took place "Approx 12-17 August 2511". And, of course, River's escape and birthdate, which kinda have to be near august/december 2500, so that, come the Train Job, River is seventeen.

Since almost every date, directly or indirectly, is calculated back from the start/end of the Battle of Serenity Valley, I'd say that date materially impacts the entire timeline.

N.B. not saying your "Late July 2511" is wrong, btw. Just sayin' that date probably is one of the most important ones.


--
"Mei-mei, everything I have is right here." -- Simon Tam

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Monday, January 21, 2008 1:16 PM

SCHOOLBOYSWINK


Quote:

Originally posted by jewelstaitefan:
Remember when Simon comes to the cargo bay, asks what she's doing? She says Oh, crime! We're doing crime.

The script said she's supposed to be shy, maybe due to Simon. When I see that, her look could be shyness, but when somebody mentioned her recuperation tiem, that look she had immediately popped into my head as a wan look, like she's not completely 100%. I could be off, let me know when you see it again. She's standing and moving OK, just the look on her face seemed different.
Regardless, because she had such a fast recovery due to Simon's doctorin skills, a couple days seems like enough for her to be back on her feet.



In instances like this, I feel I have to take on the sad duty of reminding everyone that we are talking about a television show; sometimes real life crowds in, and things are not always 100% internally consistent. Whether TJ takes place 10 years or 3 seconds after the Pilot, you are not going to see any recovery time in Kaylee because the Pilot wasn't going to be aired before TJ, and Joss and Tim knew that when they were writing it. You can't show someone recovering from a wound the audience didn't know she had received, and you don't bog down the show explaining these events in which she was supposed to have received it. That just isn't how things are done.

I think JSF is doing great work here, and she has asked for our feedback throughout. We need to decide, as a community of Browncoats, are we interested in justifying EVERYTHING, even that which cannot be justified, akin to some Trek fans' endless vain attempts to retrofit early star dates into something that makes sense. If so, then by all means we should consider Kaylee's spurious recovery time. (I think you know my opinion of the above based on my greater-than-usual snarkiness, but if I'm in the minority in that belief, that's fine.) On the other hand, if we want to document as much internal consistency as possible without lying to ourselves about reality, then we can say "O.K., we can't use Kaylee's recovery time from her wound as evidence because we know the real-life forces that drove that, so let's rule that out as a solid fact, able to neither corroborate nor condemn any theory of the timeline, and rely on something less affected by external influence."

We could also deepen the Joss worship and assume that he plans for those little details within the fiction even when real life throws him a curve. I'm not sure ANY writers are that good, to say nothing of the fact that writing is an organic process, so you don't know everything ahead of time when you put pen to paper. ("Writing is like driving a car at night. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way." -Unknown) Even if we let ourselves believe that he is that discerning in everything he writes, considering that they only had something like 2 days to write TJ, I think we could give him some slack in this case.

IMHO, better a 98% internally consistent story based on truth and fact than a 100% internally consistent story based on forced retro-fitting of facts.

"When you can't do somethin' smart, do somethin' right!" -Jayne Cobb quotes Shepherd Book

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Monday, January 21, 2008 6:52 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Regarding the forced retro-fitting of facts, the same problems occur with the final sequence of Heart of Gold, Objects in Space, Trash, Message being changed to Trash, Message, HoG, OiS. Joss said the reason was because he thought OiS went out on a better "summary" note. Nowever, this is now considered canon.
Trying to forcibly retro-fit these episodes in a different order would be a good example of what you say. Fortunately, these episodes are not overburdened with conflicting time references. Therefore the timeline can be worked out either way, so I didn't dwell on them in this timeline. The line from Mal in Trash about OMR being "half year back" does work out better in the originally filmed order.

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Monday, May 12, 2008 11:43 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Quote:

Originally posted by asarian:
Quote:

Originally posted by jewelstaitefan:

Not sure if the end of hostilities of BoSV was the same end of hostilites of the entire war (Unification Day), or if U-Day was slightly after the negoitiated surrender of Serenity Valley.


In Bushwhacked, Harken says, "Some say after Serenity, the Browncoats were through. That the war really ended in that valley." His "really ended" clearly suggest the war ended a short time after the Battle of Serenity Valley was lost. So, I'd say U-Day was slightly after the negoitiated surrender of Serenity. Likely no more than two weeks. Probably even less.

Quote:


So, did BoSV start 7 weeks before the date celebrated as U-Day?
Was the scene in the beginning of the Pilot 5 weeks into BoSV and 2 weeks before the end of Hostilities?
What do you folks think? or does it not really matter?


The start/end of the Battle of Serenity Valley certainly matters. The Operative's data pad (deleted scenes, BDM) clearly reads: "May 2511 on Hera." So, where you're getting "Late July 2511" from is unclear to me; save to have it support your notion that The Train Job took place "Approx 12-17 August 2511". And, of course, River's escape and birthdate, which kinda have to be near august/december 2500, so that, come the Train Job, River is seventeen.

Since almost every date, directly or indirectly, is calculated back from the start/end of the Battle of Serenity Valley, I'd say that date materially impacts the entire timeline.

N.B. not saying your "Late July 2511" is wrong, btw. Just sayin' that date probably is one of the most important ones.


--
"Mei-mei, everything I have is right here." -- Simon Tam



I seem to have missed this reference to BoSV in May 2511. I'll try to look it up and correlate.

Not sure if it is conflicting. Beginning late May and lasting 7 weeeks would end about mid-August. But if BOSV was mostly May, ending in July, it may not have been the actual end of the war (U-Day), that may have taken a few more weeks following BOSV.

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Tuesday, May 13, 2008 9:55 AM

CHARLIEBZ


The May 2511 date for the Battle of Serenity leaves a lot of room for interpretation. Is this date the start or the end? Even if that was the end, I think it still supports your assertion of an August U-Day. As Asarian pointed out, Commander Harken stated that Serenity marked the beginning of the end. So, Serenity didn't necessarily have to be the last battle and the week (or was it 2?) Mal & Co. spent waiting in the Valley was a negotiation for the end of that particular, albeit significant, battle but not the war itself.

I'm curious about the change in episode order. I've heard about this but it doesn't quite make sense. Frankly, I cannot see how HoG could be before Trash & Message. Inara was leaving so why would she care about clients as she was in Trash? Why would she say she "might as well be part of the crew" if she was leaving? Also, Mal and Inara seem to be friendly in the Message which I have a hard time seeing after the emotional events of HoG.

Maybe it was just filming order?

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Tuesday, May 13, 2008 9:25 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Quote:

Originally posted by CharlieBZ:
The May 2511 date for the Battle of Serenity leaves a lot of room for interpretation. Is this date the start or the end? Even if that was the end, I think it still supports your assertion of an August U-Day. As Asarian pointed out, Commander Harken stated that Serenity marked the beginning of the end. So, Serenity didn't necessarily have to be the last battle and the week (or was it 2?) Mal & Co. spent waiting in the Valley was a negotiation for the end of that particular, albeit significant, battle but not the war itself.

I'm curious about the change in episode order. I've heard about this but it doesn't quite make sense. Frankly, I cannot see how HoG could be before Trash & Message. Inara was leaving so why would she care about clients as she was in Trash? Why would she say she "might as well be part of the crew" if she was leaving? Also, Mal and Inara seem to be friendly in the Message which I have a hard time seeing after the emotional events of HoG.

Maybe it was just filming order?



War Stories was filmed 16 Oct.
HoG was filmed 29-31 Oct.
OIS was filmed 12 Nov.
Trash was filmed 27 Nov.

War Stories aired 6 Dec.

Message was filmed 10, 12 Dec.

OiS aired 13 Dec.

Message had additional scenes filmed 16 Dec.
HoG had additional scenes filmed 16 Dec.

The refilming of HoG and Message scenes was to rearrange the sequence. But they were oringinally intended otherwise. HoG had many problems because Fox wanted Joss & Tim to avoid WESTERN themes, and HoG screamed western.

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Sunday, June 15, 2008 8:18 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


There has been some recent comments indicating confusion regarding the original sequence of episodes, and the effect on the timeline from those.
I will attempt to clarify these.

The original sequence of Episodes, as filmed, ended with War Stories, then Heart of Gold, then Objects in Space, then Trash, then The Message.

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Monday, June 16, 2008 1:17 AM

SPACEANJL


I've always thought that Jayne was already on the ship when Inara rented the shuttle, just from that OMR line, and the line in TJ about Inara being on the ship eight months...

Order that the crew came on board would be Mal, Zoe, Bester, Wash, Kaylee, Jayne.


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Tuesday, June 17, 2008 9:13 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Quote:

Originally posted by SpaceAnJL:
I've always thought that Jayne was already on the ship when Inara rented the shuttle, just from that OMR line, and the line in TJ about Inara being on the ship eight months...

Order that the crew came on board would be Mal, Zoe, Bester, Wash, Kaylee, Jayne.



I have not settled on one way or the other. Your post suggests Inara would be after Jayne, but she's not listed.
The timeline as posted suggests Inara's reported joining (or maybe just leaving Madrassa House, negotiating rental with Mal) is about the same time as Janye's "one year ago" reference, but her actual joining time is later.

Mention has been made about the sequence of flashbacks in OoG as being indicative of joing sequence. However, one glaring out of sequence scene is the purchase of Serenity. This is at the end. And it did not occur after all the crew came aboard.
Another thing to consider: Inara declares she will not be servicing the crew - who was she referring to? She was talking to Mal, she could have specified he would not be serviced by her. Wash has been married, was she referring to servicing him? Or Kaylee, Zoe? If Jayne was not yet aboard, who was she referring to? Maybe it was just a all-encompassing clause or addendum, but it seems she had a reason for stating so.

Anybody notice that Serenity as Mal first sees her seems to be missing at least one Shuttle. I have wondered how long it took to purchase a shuttle compatible with a Firefly. Likely Inara got the "newest" of the 2, and maybe Mal rented it as soon as he got this "spare" shuttle - otherwise it may have been rented before.

I also have not seen mention elsewhere about whether Mal and/or Zoe fought in any action after BoSV. I get the impression this was their last action, held in place or POW from that time until release, but no more fighting for them. Anybody heard anything contrary to this?

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Tuesday, June 17, 2008 11:02 PM

SPACEANJL


Serenity OVC seems to indicate that after Serenity Valley, Mal and Zoe would have been held in a camp for a while. I think Zoe might have been released earlier than Mal (hence subsequent career as in 'Better Days'.) Mal was the highest ranking officer left - they probably kept him as an example.

And if Jayne was on Serenity, I can just imagine Inara's reaction to coming face to chest with that leering down at her...

I'm afraid I never really think of Inara as 'crew' - her being on Serenity has more of a feel of a chapter in her life, rather than a whole existence. She lives separately, works separately, and is not terribly happy with the dodgy nature of Mal's business. But that's another post.

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Wednesday, June 18, 2008 10:23 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


I finally got caught up enough to check this and verify the May 2511 reference, but it does not state if it is start, end or other of BoSV. Unlikely that a 7 week battle would be referred to as a single month if is the month in the middle of the battle, so likely either the beginning or the end. I would assume the commencement of action.

Quote:

Originally posted by CharlieBZ:
The May 2511 date for the Battle of Serenity leaves a lot of room for interpretation. Is this date the start or the end? Even if that was the end, I think it still supports your assertion of an August U-Day. As Asarian pointed out, Commander Harken stated that Serenity marked the beginning of the end. So, Serenity didn't necessarily have to be the last battle and the week (or was it 2?) Mal & Co. spent waiting in the Valley was a negotiation for the end of that particular, albeit significant, battle but not the war itself.



Operative says BoSV lasted 7 weeks, the last 2 after the Independent High Command had given up. I think this end of the first 5 weeks is the scene we see in the beginning of Pilot Serenity. (because Zoe says command isn't sending air support - or do I understand that incorrectly?)
Harken says the end really started with the end of BoSV, indicating a delay between the end of 7 weeks and U-Day.
If BoSv started the end of May 2511, then lasted through June, and the first 2-3 weeks of July, this would place the beginning of Pilot Serenity at about first week of July. After end of 7 weeks of BoSV, another 2-4 weeks before cease of hostilities, or Unification Day.
The only conflict this creates is the extremely literal "6 years later" subscript from Pilot Serenity, spanning BoSV to 1st day of Pilot and boarding of the Tams. The "6 years later" becomes more precisely 6 years and about 5 weeks. This conflict is small enough to discard until other data comes up - in fact, I think the subscripts only start with "2511" without month reference anyhow - correct? I'll update the top post for this thread.
Anybody disagree or have other data?

p.s. Actually, Zoe already addresses the interim time in deleted scenes of Pilot with Simon - "look up bloodbath" - the soldiers were left on the battle field to die of wounds for weeks while the sides negotiated.

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Thursday, June 19, 2008 5:59 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Zoe states that they lay there dying, both sides, while the peace was negotiated - for a week.
Have to work on that.
Not great clarity on whether that was the peace of BoSV, or the peace of the end of the war, and if that would be the actual Unification day.

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Monday, December 29, 2008 11:24 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


This timeline is based upon the rewritten and re-shot scenes in Pilot Serenity, as well as the Episode sequence stated by Joss and presented on the DVD set.
There is another timeline now, based upon the originally written Pilot and the original first scene (Battle of Serenity Valley), as well as the originally scripted and shot episode sequence. A link to that has been added to the first post of this thread.

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Thursday, February 19, 2009 11:57 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Updated dates for Jaynestown and Out of Gas, after consulting The Map of the Verse.

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Monday, March 10, 2014 6:34 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


bump. Have a bunch of posts been deleted or archived without access? Can't find the references I want.

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Wednesday, November 30, 2016 8:35 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


From a post in another thread:

http://fireflyfans.net/mthread.aspx?bid=4&tid=36140&mid=102056
9#1020569



Thus altering Simon's year of birth from 2490 to 2493.

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