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Joss Whedon – Serenity, Vol. 2: Better Days

February 19, 2010

16. Serenity: Better Days by Joss Whedon, Brett Matthews, Will Conrad, Michelle Madsen, Jo Chen, Adam Hughes (2008)
Serenity Graphic Novels, Vol. 2

Read my review of volume:
1. Those Left Behind

Length: 80 pages
Genre: Graphic Novel; Sci-Fi

Started: 08 February 2010
Finished: 08 February 2010

Where did it come from? The library.
Why do I have it? Well, obviously, I am a bit of a browncoat, so of course I was going to read it as soon as the library got it for me.

Mal and crew are so
used to being poor… what will
they do now they’re rich?

Summary: Mal and the rest of the crew of Serenity are pretty used to having their heists not going exactly to plan. What they’re not used to is to having their heists go better than planned. When a job turns up unexpected millions, the crew has to deal with suddenly being rich… and they all take a turn planning what to do with their cut. But the good times never last, and soon they run up against not one but two men who want to take everything away – for good.

Review: Three things to know about Serenity: Better Days:

1) It is listed as Volume 2, but that is purely a publishing order. Better Days and Those Left Behind both take place between the end of Firefly the show and before the movie Serenity, but plot-wise, they’re totally unrelated to each other, and Better Days actually comes first in the show’s internal chronology.

2) It is the equivalent of a single episode of TV. It is therefore short, even for a graphic novel. This means that while it is very fast-moving, it also doesn’t explain some fairly large details, and that since there are not one but two baddies, neither of them are developed particularly well.

3) It still looks and feels very much like a Joss Whedon script, with everyone sounding like themselves, and with a few nice callbacks to earlier episodes. Everyone mostly looks like themselves as well, and while there were a few visual notes that struck me as out of place (highways with traffic-jammed cars? on a central planet?), there were also a few bits (namely, River’s plans for her share of the booty) whose awesomeness counteracted any of the other quibbles I had. 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Recommendation: I liked Those Left Behind better, mostly because of its better-developed story, but any excuse to spend an hour with the Serenity crew is a welcome one.

This Review on LibraryThing | This Book on LibraryThing | This Book on Amazon

Other Reviews: Book Dweeb (by issues, 1, 2, 3), Libri Touches, Stella Matutina
Have you reviewed this book? Leave a comment with the link and I’ll add it in.

First Line: “I don’t like speeches.”

Cover Thoughts: Something about the shadows make Mal’s face look a little smooshy, but otherwise… yup, looks like an episode of Firefly.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. February 19, 2010 3:05 am

    I adored Firefly! I need to get these :)

  2. February 19, 2010 1:08 pm

    I have been looking for these everywhere but no one has them. I might just have to order them online and be done with it. :)

    • February 23, 2010 8:32 am

      Allie – I’m so lucky I have my library, otherwise I’d probably go broke trying to feed my graphic novel addiction.

  3. February 20, 2010 12:02 pm

    River’s plans were awesome, but I liked Book’s best. It was such a great WTF moment.

  4. February 20, 2010 3:16 pm

    I’m with Memory – Book’s plan cracked me up. I can’t even remember now what River was going to do with hers…

    • February 23, 2010 8:48 am

      Jenny – It involved a whale in a tuxedo, among other things…


  1. Serenity Comics by Joss Whedon and others

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