Review, Investigating Firefly and Serenity: Science Fiction on the Frontier

In the next issue of SFRA Review, I will have two non-fiction reviews, and one of those is on Rhonda V. Wilcox (co-editor of Slayage, editor of Studies in Popular Culture, and founding editor of Critical Studies in Television) and Tanya R. Cochran’s Investigating Firefly and Serenity:  Science Fiction on the Frontier.  There is a lot of great material on Joss Whedon’s ‘verse in this anthology.  I highly recommend you find a copy even if you’re only tangentially interested in Firefly and Serenity, because this collection will energize you!  Here’s a short excerpt from my full review:

Rhonda V. Wilcox and Tanya R. Cochran have assembled an amazing collection of superlative essays in I.B. Tauris’ latest offering in the Investigating Cult TV book series titled Investigating Firefly and Serenity:  Science Fiction on the Frontier.  Unlike the series’ earlier SF offering, Investigating Farscape:  Unchartered Territories of Sex and Science Fiction written by Jes Battis and published in 2007, Investigating Firefly is an anthology of essays by an interdisciplinary group of contributors focused on the unifying object of study:  Joss Whedon’s Firefly and Serenity ‘verse.  However, this is not to say that the volume’s chapters are isolated works.  In fact, they are intimately engaged in conversation about Firefly and Serenity.  Furthermore, the essays taken as a whole form an interconnected and cross-referenced unity that many collections cannot attain.  Also, each writer brings an enthusiastic voice to his or her work that reveals how dedicated they are to the source material, while lovingly critiquing, questioning, and challenging that same work. 

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Published by Jason W. Ellis

I am an Associate Professor of English at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY whose teaching includes composition and technical communication, and research focuses on science fiction, neuroscience, and digital technology. Also, I coordinate the City Tech Science Fiction Collection, which holds more than 600 linear feet of magazines, anthologies, novels, and research publications.