Firefly begins to wrap up its Earth-bound adventures with a heavily character-focused issue that showcases what makes this title work in some of its issues, and gives a glimpse of what could be in the very near future. Another visually great issue, which is one of the major strengths of this book month to month.
For most of the last year, the crew of the Serenity has been dealing with various issues with the locals of the Earth That Was along with the Alliance folks that have been pillaging the world for resources. It’s been a long up and down road that is almost at its end.
The overarching world of Firefly has a lot to offer and a lot of things to explore, but one of the things that has made it endure is the characters. This current Firefly comic series has been at its best when it recalls that and really focuses on the characters and their feelings/decisions. With only one issue to go (before the series will be relaunched with a new creative team as All-New Firefly), Greg Pak taps into that character well once more.
With hostilities over (as the Alliance mercenaries are defeated), the mining crew and the Serenity crew have a plan to return home, but the Serenity crew must make the decision whether they stay or go as the seasons pass waiting for the plan. After how long things have dragged using the penultimate issue to really explore the characters, their connections, and their ultimate desires is a smart choice. There is a lot of letting the art speak for itself here as we see montages of time passing (the seasons actually changing) as we watch these characters try and come to grips with their situation. Even the Serenity itself is in question as it’s become home to a variety of animals and may not fly again.
Simona Di Gianfelice and Francsco Segala, with color assists by Gloria Martinelli, rise to the occasion again and really bring the Earth and these various scenes to vivid beautiful life. They make this world look so lush and inviting, while also capturing all the heavy emotions that these characters are expressing and feeling in these moments. The moments with Mal and Inara are just emotionally and visually beautiful to experience, the body language just screaming as loudly as it can in each panel.
All the colors just match the types of day and the world so much and flow so well. Moving from the oranges and yellows and shadows of sunset to brighter midday tones, to lush greens of some of the areas, and then even the colder realms of winter.
Near the end, there are some awesome four-panel double-page spreads that depict various characters at different places on the planet. This variety of flowing colors is on full display as each of the panels is not only in a different place but different times of days and situations. It almost makes one want a book that sees these characters stay on this world and make their way, but as Simon notes in the issue it would be quite difficult in the long run.
This issue is SFX lite, but Jim Campbell still brings the magic with the good amount of dialogue that can be found here. A lot of the pages are dialogue light or have none, but others are heavier with the words. Either way, Campbell makes it all fit and flow around the scenes so that it’s not taking up too much space or blocking off what we need to see.
Firefly #35 is on sale in print and digitally from Boom Studios.