We know the history… Joss Whedon makes an awesome show called Firefly, Fox rearranges the order of the episodes, does some piss-poor marketing, and thus, a great show dies in one season. (I swear, someone at Fox did not like Joss)
Yet Firefly lived on in powerful waves of syndication and the following (not the show) of fans just keeps growing.
Then Serenity was made to help close out this story.
That’s that. Browncoats (fans of Firefly) continue on, Joss Whedon put out a few comics to continue some of the stories, and life as we know it, continues. Fans still yearn for more while having to deal with what we have.
And the burning ire many had for Fox starts to smolder into a mere warm ember under the ashes. That is, until Fox does something to reignite them!
Backtrack a few years: At some point, some fans started making some pretty fascinating looking hats, called Jayne Cobb hats.
But somehow, they either caught on just enough or someone influential from Fox saw it and screamed “foul!”
It seems that Fox is having a huge slew of Cease and Desist legal warnings going out to Browncoats or independent craft/fan sellers who are making the Jayne Cobb hats. (And if you’re not careful with the keyboard, Cobb comes out Cogg!)
It doesn’t matter if these folks have been selling these cool hats for almost 10 years, because now Fox wants to put a stop to it. Fox is coming after what’s being referred to as the single women, moms and retired ladies who love the show and were having fun recreating and selling some content from the series.
And the “fun” doesn’t stop there. Per sources, it seems C&D letters are going out to all kinds of Firefly related product makers.
Before you go off on a tangent on what seems like something that seriously sucks, first, yes, it seems that way.
Keep in mind Fox owns the content, characters and what not for anything Firefly related and is enjoying a wonderfully quiet but consistent profit margin off the show they killed way back when.
So it is within their rights to do this and it seems, it protects their own cadre of artists or merchandisers who pay exclusive distribution rights to be able to sell the Firefly ware.
Face it, if you shelled out a chunk of money to be able to sell something, and they guy next door was selling it to without paying a dime, well, it would be pretty frustrating.
OK, enough of the devil’s advocate crap. Sorry, but to be honest, I had to toss that out there, just to be fair about it.
Is this cease and desist order a good thing or something random? I bet you’re asking “How in god’s green Earth could this be a good thing?”
The last time I saw a distributor step up and take back what was theirs, was nothing more than a prelude to a newer and (maybe) better version of their software.
Many years ago there was a game called NASCAR Racing 2003. (Don’t you dare ask what year it came out!) Even for today, the physics of that game was 2nd to none. It came, it sold to the select core of customers, then fell by the wayside.
But fans kept it going with mods of all sorts. Then, after several years of being allowed to run rampant, the franchise owner suddenly reared their heads and dispatched a slew of C&D’s for the mod makers to stop modifying the game and to close down the hosted racing with the mods.
It was frustrating but there was nothing you could do. Suspicions say that the legal actions took place so the owner could get their hands around a few aspects of this superior simulation. Later, the core of the game became what is now known as IRacing and you can catch it under the NASCAR banner.
So what they were doing, was looking to create new content of the core of the program, and they couldn’t have stray, competitive content out there when they were looking to distribute a new version of their game core code.
So if Fox is suddenly extending their legal reach out there with C&D’s for this little thing of a hat and other merchandise, I have to wonder if they’re just being butt-heads, or is there something up in the background that says, hey, we need to start protecting our investment again because of one thing or another that we might have a plan for.
I know this is a stretch of some dark, inner hope, but I’d like to think this terrible new public smearing of it’s own image, might herald something good and new from Fox, related to Firefly.
Fans can hope, can’t they?
I caught this over at [themarysue.com] website… check out the article they have up on the hats and what’s up. they’re updating as things develop. -Bruce