FIREFLY EPISODE DISCUSSIONS

Inara line in "Our Mrs. Reynolds".

POSTED BY: ROOKJOOMS
UPDATED: Tuesday, July 12, 2016 19:55
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Saturday, November 17, 2012 3:33 PM

ROOKJOOMS


I'm new here and this is my first post, so first things first:

1. Hi, everybody! Long-time fan, first-time poster. I'm not one for introductions, so I'd just like to dive right in and let future discourse do the work to that end.

2. Preemptive apologies if this topic has been discussed up before. This site has been around awhile, and going through 10+ years of forum backlogs seems like no fun. Also, if something like this is addressed in canon, I don't remember it, so bear with me.


I want y'all to think back to the titular episode and the following lines of dialogue:

Mal: "This isn't happening. (to Saffron) Would you stop cryin'?"
Inara: "For god's sake, Mal. Could you be a human being for thirty seconds?"

Now, we already know both speakers develop pent-up feelings for the other. However, Inara's little barb here seems more to do with empathy/anger in seeing a fellow woman in need than it does jealousy. This got me thinking: What if Inara herself (or a close companion friend, perhaps) was in Saffron's shoes at some point? What if part of her unknown history involves being tricked or blackmailed into a bad relationship? As a companion, there would be plenty of occasions for things to got wrong in such a way.
Also, what if Inara's terminal illness were brought into play? What better way to blackmail someone into staying with you than by threatening them with a slow, debilitating, embarrassing death? Granted, the right disease would destroy her career, but I think that factor could have been worked into the story in an interesting way. Thoughts? Is this all maybe a little stretch of the imagination?


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Saturday, November 17, 2012 6:22 PM

RIVER_TAM


That is an interesting thought.
Also welcome

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Sunday, November 18, 2012 9:13 AM

BYTEMITE


I don't think Inara has some sort of contagious disease or STD, which are the only possibilities I could think of that would destroy her career, because it would raise serious questions for her to still be taking clients and living with the crew. No matter how important Inara's career is to her, I don't get a Typhoid Mary vibe from her, or an "I'm dying so I'm going to take as many people as I can with me" vibe.

If it was blackmail to keep her nearby, the blackmail would already have been released, for obvious reasons. There COULD be blackmail for her to stay AWAY from Sihnon, if maybe someone decided to play politics with the whole house priestess confirmation thing and usurp Inara's chances.

I think the episode deals with a lot of Inara's issues very subtlely. I too don't see (most) of Inara's anger here with Mal being jealousy. It seems that arranged marriages and/or exploitation of women is a very touchy subject with Inara. Whether or not it's something she experienced or whether she saw someone else pushed towards that (Nandi maybe?) I don't know.

I do believe that there is at least some element here of Inara's illness when Mal talks to Inara about kids, either because she can't have them and wants them, or she believes she'll die before she ever has the chance.

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Sunday, November 18, 2012 3:19 PM

ROOKJOOMS


"I don't think Inara has some sort of contagious disease or STD...I don't get a Typhoid Mary vibe from her, or an 'I'm dying so I'm going to take as many people as I can with me' vibe."
A disease doesn't have to be contagious to affect your lifestyle or how people perceive you. Cancer and the like wreck havoc on peoples' lives without being transmittable in the least, and that's the kind of thing I was going for in this hypothetical back story.

"...the blackmail would already have been released, for obvious reasons..."
???...No, wait, your right :(. She'd have not reason to stay once she got the cure. My galactic bad. Your idea seems intriguing, though. All the more reason for her to stay with a crew that never once does business on Sihnon.

"...when Mal talks to Inara about kids..."
I do not recall this. Deleted scene?

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Sunday, November 18, 2012 4:51 PM

BYTEMITE


Quote:

Cancer and the like wreck havoc on peoples' lives without being transmittable in the least, and that's the kind of thing I was going for in this hypothetical back story.


Yeah, but cancer isn't embarrassing and I also doubt that it would lose Inara her job. The Guild doesn't get their money's worth if Inara's not working. What could lose Inara her job is clearly if her reputation were damaged.

I guess it's possible that there could be an insurance snafu that the guild doesn't want to pay out, but why would Inara speak so highly of the guild if this was a common practice or something she was worried about?

Quote:

She'd have not reason to stay once she got the cure.


Well, she wouldn't be cured if she was dying. It's possible it's something she has to take regularly, but she would have been cut off if she left in this scenario, which we can see is not the case. More likely she's being kept away from the core rather than someone wanting to keep her nearby.

Quote:

I do not recall this. Deleted scene?

MAL
I'm sorry. Are you tetchy because I got myself a
bride or 'cause I don't plan to keep her?

INARA
I find the whole thing degrading.

MAL
That's just what Saffron said about your
line of work.

INARA
Maybe you should think twice about letting go
of Saffron. You two seem like quite a match.

MAL
Maybe you're right. Maybe we're soulmates.

INARA
Yes. Great. I wish you hundreds of fat children.

MAL
Aw, could you imagine that? Me with a whole
passel of critters underfoot? Hell, ten
years time I could --

INARA
Could you leave me alone for five minutes,
please?

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Tuesday, November 20, 2012 9:13 AM

EBFIDDLER


Quote:

Originally posted by RookJooms:
"I don't think Inara has some sort of contagious disease or STD...I don't get a Typhoid Mary vibe from her, or an 'I'm dying so I'm going to take as many people as I can with me' vibe."
A disease doesn't have to be contagious to affect your lifestyle or how people perceive you.


I think Inara's illness is not something contagious, but something that would affect her career as a Companion. For example, a disorder that affects her appearance (lesions, skin rash, premature aging, etc.) would definitely have an adverse effect on the career of a woman whose business depends in great part on how she looks. One that limits her stamina or curtails her ability to engage in physical activity could also end her career. Cancer's not the only pernicious and insidious disease. Neurological disorders, immune deficiencies, hormonal imbalances, benign tumors, heart condition, metabolic disorders...many, many possibilities.

Quote:

"...the blackmail would already have been released, for obvious reasons..."
All the more reason for her to stay with a crew that never once does business on Sihnon.


I think that political intrigue, including perhaps blackmail, have alot to do with why Inara left Sihnon.

Quote:

"...when Mal talks to Inara about kids..."
I do not recall this. Deleted scene?


End of Act One of Our Mrs Reynolds.

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Tuesday, November 20, 2012 9:47 AM

BYTEMITE


Ooh, the aging one is possible. I've heard people speculate Inara is a clone, although only problem is she has a belly button. Clones don't have belly buttons, unless they were birthed from a surrogate mother, but artificial wombs and growth vats are more convenient in the 26th century.

Still, I'm not sure that would ruin her career. Some of the older geisha are the ones in most demand, because they've had a lot of time to really hone their skills and refine their wit.

Skin stuff, so long as it's not contagious, she can use makeup. That's one of her themes actually, it seems to me, using makeup to hide her real self and what she feels.

And stamina, somehow I think that during moments of passion it's her clients doing all the work. I dunno. I think, if it weren't for other complications, Inara would be willing to work up to the very last hour, and that she would figure out ways to do so.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012 3:24 AM

ROOKJOOMS


Cloning seems like an interesting idea. Reminds me of a certain Star Wars fan theory about Obi-Wan Kenobi (more on that at http://www.cracked.com/article_19266_5-movie-fan-theories-that-make-mo
re-sense-than-movie_p2.html
. See theory #1.)

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012 6:15 AM

BYTEMITE


Shoot, wish I could read it... I'll check it out at home.

But yeah, the thing about Nandi commenting that Inara still looks young has a lot of potential here, does she age too fast and the comment is ironic? Or is the cloning = fast aging thing subverted and she's genetically engineered to age slower but has other associated problems with that?

I notice that sometimes Mal is suggested to be close to FIFTY. Though he doesn't seem to be having genetic engineering problems.

I know Joss said no aliens, humans create enough problems for an interesting drama. I don't recall he said anything against clones. Or time travel. (Though that raises questions about trying to change the course of the Unification War or the Battle of Serenity Valley)

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012 7:08 AM

BLUEEYEDBRIGADIER


Quote:

Originally posted by BYTEMITE:
Shoot, wish I could read it... I'll check it out at home.

But yeah, the thing about Nandi commenting that Inara still looks young has a lot of potential here, does she age too fast and the comment is ironic? Or is the cloning = fast aging thing subverted and she's genetically engineered to age slower but has other associated problems with that?

I notice that sometimes Mal is suggested to be close to FIFTY. Though he doesn't seem to be having genetic engineering problems.

I know Joss said no aliens, humans create enough problems for an interesting drama. I don't recall he said anything against clones. Or time travel. (Though that raises questions about trying to change the course of the Unification War or the Battle of Serenity Valley)



Well, Inara being a clone or genetically modified to age slower could make sense, since if we take Melinda Clarke's actual age at time of filming (33) as a general baseline to work with for how old Nandi was during "Shindig" compared to Morena being a decade younger (23) during filming, Inara looks a decade or so younger than someone dialogue seems to make out as a classmate.

Now, Nandi could have joined the Guild closer to any max age limit (18-19, compared to Inara being 12) they have for trainees, but if Inara is some Guild effort to GE a "perfect" companion that is highly intelligent, extremely beautiful, witty, well-versed in various topics...slower aging would go a long way to maximizing profits or Inara being a top draw for decades.

On the point of Mal being closer to 50 himself, the only clue(s) I have ever noticed is the Alliance records the Operative looks up that show Mal with a birthday of September 20, 2468...which would make Mal 49 (since props of Alliance or Academy reports show the Operative's visit and start of the subliminal messages as June 2518).

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012 7:31 AM

BYTEMITE


Now that's interesting. According to the Serenity Blue Ray extras, Inara is 29, which is closer to Nandi in age, but she looks 23. Could be an actor or mythology gag Joss threw in, or it could be significant. But yeah, 29 compared to 33, they could actually have been schoolmates. I assumed they were in entirely different classes and knew each other through whatever dormitory system or maybe even tutoring program the Guild might use.

Quote:

On the point of Mal being closer to 50 himself, the only clue(s) I have ever noticed is the Alliance records the Operative looks up that show Mal with a birthday of September 20, 2468...which would make Mal 49


Yeah. Which could again be a gag, since Mal borrowed his birthday from the Firefly series premiere and the birthyear from a producer on the set with the same birthday. Orrrr... Could be something going on there.

Or the Alliance just has crappy record keeping, especially if that data on Mal comes from Mal having to register his personal information with the Alliance in prison camp. His name is spelled wrong there too, could be the camp recorder just didn't care.

Hey BEB! It's been a while since I've seen you around.

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Monday, July 11, 2016 7:30 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


Quote:

Originally posted by RookJooms:
I want y'all to think back to the titular episode and the following lines of dialogue:

Mal: "This isn't happening. (to Saffron) Would you stop cryin'?"
Inara: "For god's sake, Mal. Could you be a human being for thirty seconds?"

Now, we already know both speakers develop pent-up feelings for the other. However, Inara's little barb here seems more to do with empathy/anger in seeing a fellow woman in need than it does jealousy. This got me thinking: What if Inara herself (or a close companion friend, perhaps) was in Saffron's shoes at some point? What if part of her unknown history involves being tricked or blackmailed into a bad relationship? As a companion, there would be plenty of occasions for things to got wrong in such a way.
Also, what if Inara's terminal illness were brought into play? What better way to blackmail someone into staying with you than by threatening them with a slow, debilitating, embarrassing death? Granted, the right disease would destroy her career, but I think that factor could have been worked into the story in an interesting way. Thoughts? Is this all maybe a little stretch of the imagination?


This dialogue seems to conflict with the views of many that Inara knew Saffron was a con. Do we think Inara knew at this point? If so, she was just giving Mal a good jab? Or was Inara also fooled at this point, only sussing it out later?
What do you think?

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Tuesday, July 12, 2016 7:55 PM

JEWELSTAITEFAN


bump

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