Season 1 Episode 5

Out of Gas

Aired Friday 8:00 PM Oct 25, 2002 on FOX

Episode Fan Reviews (43)

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  • Best TV episode, of any show ever.

    Yeah, what the title says.

    No Battlestar Galactica, Game of Thrones, Hannibal, Breaking Bad or Dexter episode has ever made such an impact on me as this episode of Firefly does. It is masterpiece. Period.
  • Out of Gas

    The good;

    Really, really good, a classic 'submarine' story told with comedy and tension yet with wonderful character touches too. Lovely little details like even when they're all freezing to death Jayne stays in his shirtsleeves or Simon mourning the loss of his brithday.

    The bad;

    I'm almost a little disappointed that Mal just bought Serenity at a second hand spaceship sale, I always thought he won her in a card game or stole her from the Alliance (or even the Independents?) in the dying days of the war.

    Best line;

    River (to a frightened Book); "Don't worry preacher, we won't suffocate. We'll freeze to death first"

    Packing heat;

    Mal shot with a Browning 9mm.

    Notches on the Serenity bedpost; Bester gives Kaylee a 'tour' of his engine room

    Inarra;1-a paying customer who wishes to make her his kept woman, 1 possible, Atherton.

    Wash; 1-the missus

    Zoe; 1-the hubby


    Capt subtext;

    Interestingly Inara says that she loved Serenity the moment she saw her too, just as Mal did. She also says 'I don't want to die at all'. One theory I've heard throughout the series is that she's actually slowly dying (like Darla) and that the syringe we see her with in Serenity was for medecine rather than narcotics or a suicide kit. Here she says that she doesn't want any of the crew just bursting into her room unannounced, she's not bashful of her nudity, could she be hiding something else? Is this part of the 'little clues' they speak of in the commentary?

    How'd they get away with that?

    Never liked needles, bad enough to watch Simon inject Zoe but watching Mal do it to himself is even nastier.

    Total Serenity crew; 9

    Mal, Zoe, Jayne, Wash, Kaylee, Inarra, Book, Simon, River

    Whedon cliches;

    Devoted siblings, haunted charismatic leading man. Teenage girls with superpowers. Hookers. Babbling insane girls with truth in their madness. Fake cockneys. Misguided religious zealots. Numbered t-shirts. Girls with botanical names (Willow, Saffron, Jasmine). Absent fathers. Clever use of extensive flashbacks (Fool for Love, Lies my Parents told me, Are you now or ever have been?)

    Knocked out; Zoe rendered unconscious by the explosion

    Book; 2

    Simon; 1

    Kaylee; 1


    Mal; 1

    Wash; 1

    Inara; 1

    Zoe; 1

    Happy high-class hookers in Space;

    We're informed that companions don't kiss and tell, as you would expect of people who listen to the pillow talk of the rich and powerful.

    Whedon alumni- Joss likes to reuse the same actors in his series, let's count up their appearances (let me know if I miss any)

    Nathan Fillon-3; Firefly, Caleb in S7 of Buffy and Dr Horrible

    Gina Torres-2; Firefly and Jasmine in S4 of Angel

    Alan Tudyk-2; Firefly and the villainous/heroic(?) Alpha in Dollhouse (haven't seen season 2 so don't spoil it for me)

    Adam Baldwin-2; Firefly and Marcus Hamilton in S5 of Angel

    Summer Glau-3; Firefly, Dollhouse and the prima ballerina in the LEGENDARY S4 Angel ep 'Waiting in the wings'.

    Carlos Jacott-3; The Fed in Firefly, Ken in the 'Anne' ep of Buffy and Richard Straley in 'The Bachelor Party' ep of Angel.

    Andy Umberger;3-the captain of the Dortmunder in Firefly, D'Hoffryn in Buffy, the psychic surgeon in the Angel ep 'I fall to pieces'.

    Mark Shepherd;2-Badger in Firefly and later turns up as one of Ballard's FBI colleagues in Dollhouse. Also a BSG alumni.

    Jeff Rickets;3- one of the blue handed men in Firefly and Weatherby on Buffy/Angel plus the spiderdemon at the end of Angel season 4

    Gregg Henry; 2- he's one of those faces that occur time and again in TV/movies, the Sherrif in The Train Job and he later recurrs in the Dollhouse ep 'Ghost', one of my favourite eps of season 1.

    Christina Hendricks; 2-Saffron in Firefly and a bar maid in the Angel ep 'The Prodigal'. She'll later star in Mad Men with Whedonverse alumni Vincent Kartheiser.

    Alliance good or bad?;

    Mal talks of the Serenity representing freedom to him, that they can 'live like real people' which he doesn't feel able to do with the Alliance. They're sneaking about under the radar 'the way it should be' even when it takes them hugely out of the way, it hurts the crew. Now of course, flying under the radar and living as an outlaw from civilisation is all very well UNTIL something goes wrong (or to put it another way, even anarchists dial 999/911). Wash lacks Zoe/Mal's antipathy towards the Alliance and resents that Mal's hatred for it has landed them in this mess and may cost Zoe her life. Interestingly Inara was in favour of unification and supported the Alliance in the war, just as River and Simon did.

    Mal's no fool, he's suspicious of the 'rescue' crew, knowing there's no honour or trust in the wilderness.

    Missing scenes;

    Rumoured to be a scene where we see Mal and Zoe meet for the first time during the war, she catches him stealing supplies for his unit and then he realises she's doing the same.

    Firefly speak;


    Weak tea=not good

    Back birth=idiot

    Companion=high class courtesan



    Rutting=bloody (or perhaps 'fraking'?)


    Purple belly=officious bureaucrat

    Ta-gow=Oh god!

    Won-gwa-pee= to urinate or defecate





    Wah=what the hell?

    Mah song=quickly


    Nu-shu-quong=nice going

    Shot; Mal shot by the other captain

    Mal; 2-




    Reminds me off;

    The opening with the camera panning around the empty ship is very Alien again. Mal's leadership under pressure is inspired and he reminds me of great Irish Unionist hero Ernest Shackleton (check out Kenneth Brannaghs excellent version of the story) and of Apollo 13. Wash with his moustache and Hawaiin shirt is very Magnum PI. Kaylee is actually very close to her daddy, just like Fred. The whole ep very similar to the Space; Above and Beyond episode 'Who monitors the birds?' which Joss cites as his inspiration for the Buffy ep 'Hush' plus the Babylon 5 ep Walkabout.

    Questions and observations;

    This almost strikes you as a third pilot, we're introduced to the crew one by one and everyone's role on the ship is explained. Bester kinda reminds me of the workman in porn who turns up to fix something at the lonely housewives home. Book seems a lot more scared than everyone else which seems atypical of the character we know. Has he had a similar exeprience to this in the past?

    Is the gun Mal finds something he planted earlier for just such an emergency or one that was left lying around by Jayne or something?

    9/10; eps like this tell me why Firefly has such a devoted fanbase, hope the rest are like this

  • One of the greatest hours of television I've ever seen.

    "Out of Gas" was one of the single greatest hours of television I've ever seen. The show begins with Mal Reynolds in mortal peril, then bounces around in time to show how he reached that point -- and how he gathered his crew. Even though you know in your gut that the hero won't die, you're still as desperate as he is to get him out of his situation. The final scene caps off not only the episode, but gives you an insight into the "tenth" character of the series as well, showing you why exactly Serenity means so much. "Out of Gas" is perfectly written, acted, directed and paced. Stories like this, episodes like this, are what made Firefly so brilliant.
  • A nice flashback episode, but a bit too heroic and overdone.

    As the episode was starting, it seems to me, that it would be a typical "we are have no gas/fuel, we are stranded/helpless" where everybody just sit around, do deep conversations and no action happens. But i was surprised to see that it wasn't.
    The episode begins from the end sequence, and shows then, how it came to this point. The idea is not new, but brings more change to a "out of gas"-episode. Some action is there too. And of course the whole flashbacks to past, in which we can learn how Mal hired each member of the crew. Hiring of the mechanic surprised me a bit x-) i thought she were more... innocent x-) whatever, the last of the flashbacks where we see as the seller shows Mal a big-*ss ship telling how good it is, Mal ws looking at this firefly-class transport... pretty sentimental scene...

    Two things i found exaggerated - as mal put the syringe in his breast and as he decided to stay alone at serenity, exaggerated, too heroic, don't like such stuff. People ain't acting so in real life.
  • The very best episode of what proved to be one of the most innovative sci fi series ever.

    For me Out of Gas was the perfect episode. We saw another side to our favourite crew members. Each scene was perfect in itself and the flashbacks proved to be very informative.

    I love the verbal sparring between Mal and Inara. Their bickering repartee has all the hallmarks of the classic Hollywood film couples. Tracey and Hepburn, Bogart and Bacall and many others.

    We had an indication that Wash is not just the comic relief. His reaction to Zoe's injury was just right and the tension between him and Mal when he refused to leave her side was quite scary.

    The Bester character was a nice little cameo. I just loved the look on Mal's face when he found his engineer and a 'prairie harpy' getting it on in the engine room.

    Nathan Fillion's facial expressions are wonderful. He can say almost as much with the quirk of an eyebrow as he can with a full paragraph of script.

    If a newcomer to the series watches only one episode it has to be Out of Gas.
  • average

    I expect more from the greatest show ever. More as in what this show is really about. Which means, I'd like to see some smuggling and a little more character development. Sure we got to know their past's better, but that is usually something for the pilot. It was like they were introducing the show all over again. When I watch a sow I'd like to be treated like I know most of the backstory after 1 or 2 episodes. Not in the middle of the first season. I easily lost interest in some parts of this episode. Some things were interesting but others unesscessary. All in all I think this episode had potential but didn't live up it. I know there are a lot of people here who REALLY liked this episode and I'm fine with that. You are entitled to your opinions and I am entitled to mine.
  • One of the most compelling, beautiful and emotional pieces of television I have seen. Amazing

    If anybody asks you to give them one good reason why Firefly should never have been cancelled - this is it.
    Everything about this episode hits the right note.

    Nathan Fillion is on fine form as the Captain who is set on going down with his ship, displaying just the right balance between giving up hope and being determined to save Serenity.

    The explosion that takes Zoe out of the majority of the episode is fantastically done as is Simon's upset that all this is to happen on his birthday.

    The flashbacks could have been intrusive to the A plot of the episode, instead they compliment it perfectly and give us some amusing moments to counteract the depressing atmosphere of the main plot. Jewell Staite has a very memorable scene in her flashback.

    The episode is infact set over three different timelines. The first being Mal struggling to stay alive. The second, The Situation that led him to be in this situation and third being how everybody lived.

    All in all this episode is easily the best of the series, and I have yet to see an episode of any show this good since. Firefly raised the bar.
  • serinity breaks down and while everyone else goes for help, Mal stays behind with his ship.

    This episode literally has everything humour, action, emotion and drama. It cleverly starts near the end and spends the rest of the episode showing us how we reach that point and more importantly how each of the original crew of serenity came to join. The first moment we see wash with his very fetching moustache and Zoë's obvious dislike for him is priceless, along with Jayne's casual betrayal of his previous employers for little more than his own room and a slight pay increase. Kaylees introduction is likely to shatter any illusions about her being sweet and innocent and it's great to see the tension between Mal and Inara in its infancy in the form of a very tense bargaining session. The music in this episode was at times hauntingly beautiful with some very distinctive contrast in the camera to easily distinguish between flashbacks and real time to avoid any confusion.
    The ending is likely to bring tears as we see Malcolm's expression, seeing Serenity for the first time, and as he wakes up the line "you all gona be here when I wake up" brings it firmly back to reality and ends one of the finest example of everything good about firefly and TV in general.
  • After an explosion on the ship, the crew is running out of Oxygen. Mal, alone after dismissing his crew, relieves the moments everyone found serenity.

    This is my absolute favourite episode of the series!

    Althrough out the episode we see, how Mal, Zoe, Wash, Kaylee and Inara came to be on Serenity, the humour of these moments is offset by Mal's Struggle to stay alive as he tries to fix his ship.

    The story is told in a non-linear format, jumping forwards and backwards as it is revealed how Mal came to be alone on the ship and telling the storied of the first introductions to Serenity.

    Each flashback, reveals more of the characters that we have already come to love, but, it's the last flashback that truly makes this episode for me : when we finally see just how Mal came across Serenity...and the look on his face when he does, is truly a classic moment in this entire series, and probably my favourite moment overall
  • When your miracle gets here, call us back..

    Oh, I most say I loved the way this episode was built - the way we got the first feeling of what happened before the start - Mal alone, lifesupport failing and he desperately trying to get somewhere.. And the unique building was not only that - they way the mixed reality and flashbacks to little past and much back in past. That created that kind of amazing dynamic, told us not only one story, but two and there were some great revelations - how every member of the team get on the ship, how Mal met Serenity.. I think it was one great episode.
  • Serenity breaks down and the crew leaves to find help. Mal stays behind while we see flashbacks with origin stories about the crew.

    This is my favorite hour of television ever!!! There is so much to love about this episode, but what it comes down to is how well developed these characters are. By this point, if you are watching the episodes on DVD (the correct order), we understand how much of a family they are. Out of Gas gives us these amazing flashbacks which are funny, surprising, and appropriate while, at the same time, we are being shown this very dramatic story with Mal seriously injured and alone on the ship. Some of the best writing, acting, and directing all appear in this episode. It also solidifies Mal's love for Serenity itself and helps establish the ship as a character. There isn't a weak note in the entire episode and I love watching it over and over again. If only every show could have an episode so meaningful, entertaining, and full of love. A true high point of the series which is full of high points.
  • Flashback episode done well

    Serenity becomes damaged and everyone must leave, but Mal stays behind. (The captain going down with his ship) After acquiring the needed part to fix the ship, Mal gets injured. Throughout the episode Mal has flashbacks of how everyone ended up on Serenity. Meanwhile, the two shuttles left with 4 people on each looking for help. The ending is beautiful, and you truly believe that these people are family who deeply care about each other. This episode is a personal favorite (as is every episode in the series) it is so well written and acted, it will blow your mind that this show could be canceled.
  • We see the past, present and the future present.

    This is truly one of the most beautiful examples of television out there. The plot consists of the ship breaking, an engine part to be exact. Interspersed through that are flashbacks to when Wash, Kaylee, Inara and Jayne joined the crew. Between that are also scenes of Mal in a perilous situation, that is explained at the current time goes on.

    The three periods are so seamlessly twined, they actually overlap with each other at points. It's so wonderfully timed and even the different scenes have different filter colors. The flashbacks are a kind of gold tinged, the future blue, and the present normal. The music is moving and emotive. The flashbacks also have hilarious insider irony, including Wash with a mustache that is priceless.

    I highly recommend this episode to anyone who appreciates true beauty and craftsmanship.
  • A beautiful and emotional episode, Out of Gas takes us where Firefly hasn't taken us before: into the realms of heartfelt emotion and the lives of our crew. A brilliant episode in every sense.

    Wow - what an episode! This is without a doubt one of my favorite Firefly episodes. It has everything going for it and it is the first episode to really touch your heart, which is vital in any show.

    As I have mentioned, in addition to being a sub-texter, I am a HUGE flashbacks fan. I am all about the back-story, and the small hints into their worlds that we are given are what it is all about for me. I have been hanging out in this series for a little bit of back-story, a glimpse into where these people have come from, why they chose Serenity (or why Serenity chose them??), what makes them how they are now. I am desperate to hear their secrets, their regrets, their longings and losses and, finally, Out of Gas delivers a little.

    From the opening scene it is clear that this episode is different. The feel of the scene, the pace, the look is all different. It is not an action episode, it is an emotion episode. Seeing Mal lying helpless is quite heart wrenching and from then on your eyes are glued to the screen.

    The flashbacks are used beautifully, phased in so subtly that you barely even notice them until they are in full swing. And these flashbacks offer us a lot in terms of back story. We now know how and (in some cases) why each of our people joined Serenity.

    I have to say that I was surprised about how it all came about. Clearly there is more to Zoe and Wash's relationship than meets the eye, given Zoe's less-than-enthusiastic reaction to Wash. Kaylee's introduction to the ship was not at all what I expected. I had seen Kaylee as a very virginal, naive, and almost child-like character, but I guess she is more worldly than I realized. Mal I must say I could have imagine, and where Mal goes, Zoe goes. Inara was also a less of a shock. She picked up Mal's number early on and knew just how to handle him. It is good to see that time has not diminished that initial spark.

    Throughout the episode, what I really liked was seeing Mal interact with his new recruits, and how he reacts with the crew after a few years experience. He is such a solid, reliable (and at times incredibly frustrating) guy, but it is so comforting to know his connection to the ship and to the crew is not unfounded and is reciprocated. I always feel like I need to protect Mal from getting hurt by people, I don't know why that is.

    This episode is also the first episode which I have shed a tear at in Firefly thus far. In any series this is milestone because it is the moment when the attachment becomes deeper and enduring. This is an emotional episode in every respect, and is designed to tear a little at your heart, which is fine by me.

    I just loved everything about this episode; the flashbacks were great, the timing was perfect, the emotions were real and so was the sense of dread and sadness. I wanted to jump in there and save Serenity and Mal, and that is saying something about the power of the episode.

    Top marks from me.
  • With Serenity in trouble, Mal remembers how he got the show and its crew.

    This was a very interesting episode because it provided a look back at the characters and how they came to join the Serenity crew.

    I particularly liked Jayne's part even though he's not normally my favourite character. I loved the hold up scene with Mal 'negotiating' with Jayne and Jayne shooting his partner in the knee to shut him up. Hilarious!!

    Also hilarious was how Kaylee joined the crew, her predecessor, Bester, wasn't a good mechanic apparently, but she saw what was wrong instantly and managed to fix it even though she'd never done anything of the kind.

    Zoe finding Wash bothersome was great too, especially in hindsight knowing they were to get married.

    Inara's story was slightly odd, in that it didn't provide an answer to the question why she chose to join them...
  • Fantastic from start to finish.

    You know when you fall in love with a series. Well this episode gave me chills. I have always been a Buffy and Angel fan, and for whatever reason, I just never got into Firefly. Well, that was my mistake. I am only human right?Well, I finally bought the series and couldn't stop watching. All the episodes are great, but this one, brought tears to my eyes. The feelings expressed were amazing. I ranted and raved about this episode. I was truly hooked. I always love a flashback apisode in any series I watch. It helps to let the viewers know what we missed before the series started. I loved everything about it. If you haven't been lucky enough to see this show, you truly are missing out.
  • This episode starts at the end and the rest of the episode is flashback, some distant and some near. Mal is badly injured and the rest of the episode is devoted to how he got that way and also some very interesting bits of character development.

    This episode is why I watched the show. "Out of Gas" was very cleverly set up with the flashbacks adding to our knowledge of the characters on the show. I wish this episode had come earlier in the series as I believe it would have helped to garner recognition and a following from viewers to bolster the ratings and perhaps forestall the cancellation of the series. The distant past flashbacks show Mals first encounters with several crew members including Kaylee and Wash. These details are great background to show the bonds that have been established and foundations of the relationships among the various crew members. (Obviously this does not include River, Simon or Book as they first met the crew in the pilot episode.) The near past flashbacks help to show how Mal got in his predicament. He is literally in a life or death situation, but that is par for the course for the captain of Serenity.

    Great episode.
  • An episode set in three tenses, present, past and distant past. The story is set around Serenity malfunctioning looking at what is going on in the present, what happened when she broke down in the recent past and how the ship's crew was formed.

    This has to be the best episode of the series. I kow there aren't a lot to choose from but the story was truly amazing and the last scene as Mal looks at Serenity for the first time is just how you imagine it as you can see throughout the whole episode how much he loves his ship. Of course not lost on humour either, from Zoe's pre-conseptions of Wash and Mal's banter to get Jayne on board. True style of Firefly's creator. The best of the lot.
  • AN oridinary day on the firefly turns tragic when the crew leaves for help while Mal stays on the ship waiting for a response that might never come.

    I love this episode I think it was one of the best episodes in the entire series. I love how they show how each member of the firefly came aboard. It had humor, drama, and everything you could ask for. The acting was first rate and could be better and I love the interaction the crew has with eachother and how they know each other so well. I really love the ending of the episode when the sellsman was trying to sell Mal a ship, but he was looking at the firefly the whole time and ignoring the guy completely. Great episode, great show I wish it continued.
  • Answers to some basic questions about the crew of Serenity.

    With the original pilot for the series being held until the end of the year, a great deal of the information that would normally be presented to the audience has been left out of the equation. This episode, while not intended to take the place of the pilot, manages to answer some basic questions about the crew of Serenity. Along the way, we get some insight into how characters have changed since joining Mal on Serenity, and how those changes inform the current crisis. In the synopsis, there’s an attempt to build a timeline out of what we’re presented, but since the flashbacks aren’t given a time reference, it’s hard to know if the events take place sequentially or not. In this particular case, that assumption is as good as any. It fits that Mal and Zoe would have been working together following the war, and that it might have taken Mal as long as two or three years to get the resources and capital to buy a ship. The next few flashbacks appear to happen very soon after Mal purchases Serenity, and that also makes perfect sense. Mal’s priority was to get the ship flying, and that meant getting the bridge ready for a pilot, finding one, and then getting an engineer to get Serenity off the ground. Wash gets a de facto introduction here, and other than a moment of comedy when Zoe initially doesn’t like him, there’s not much to it. The introduction to Kaylee, on the other hand, speaks volumes. Some fans might take exception to discovering that sweet, young Kaylee was a little free spirited, obviously not at all bothered by the concept of some hot and sweaty sex when the inclination comes on. But that makes a certain amount of sense, given her circumstances. Kaylee mentions that she usually works for her father, but recently there hasn’t been any work to do. Stuck on a frontier planet with little or no future, Kaylee is going to take whatever happiness the moment can provide. This also fits her not-so-subtle advances towards Simon, and Mal’s quick understanding of Kaylee’s intentions in “Jaynestown”. When Inara joins the crew, it’s not clear how much time has passed. However, in “Bushwhacked”, Inara mentions that she’s been with Serenity for about a year. So Mal and the crew would have been attempting to get work for at least a year, and would have realized that they needed something extra to gain some degree of respectability and notice. We never learn, however, why Inara feels the need to sign on with Serenity. The fact that she supported Unification also brings up some interesting questions about Mal’s intentions, since it’s rather obvious that Mal is still very much aligned with Independent thinking. Jayne’s introduction is absolutely perfect for the character. Jayne has always come across as a complete mercenary, yet there is a loyalty to Mal and the rest of the crew that doesn’t quite track. Now we see the reason for his loyalty. Mal treats him as something more than a hired hand, and that has gained Jayne’s favor. He might find Mal a bit soft, but he’s learned that Mal is a better and smarter man than most in their line of work. But if we assume that Jayne’s arrival occurred after Inara joined Serenity, then Jayne’s only been with the crew for a short time. That could factor into later episodes, if Jayne ever gets wind of a competing deal. After all, whatever respect Jayne might have for Mal, it’s only been that way for some number of months. How much loyalty has Jayne really developed in that time? Even the flashbacks which take place hours before the episode contain perfect character moments. There’s the requisite interplay between Kaylee and Simon and Inara and Mal, but we get a better look at Wash in those moments than we’ve ever had. His righteous anger towards Mal shows us just where he draws the line between Zoe and the rest of the crew. Even more, we see where Mal draws the line. Even if he cares deeply for his friends, he considers the needs of the ship and crew to be paramount. There’s Jayne’s typical dismissal of Simon, River’s detached and overly technical speech, Kaylee’s obsession over engines and tech, Mal’s utter determination to stay alive and keep flying…it all adds up to an episode with absolutely no filler. The plot itself is fairly simple, and without the benefit of the flashbacks and styled cuts between them, I’m not sure that this episode would have worked so well. But scenes last only as long as they need to, and for the first time, we get the sense that Serenity is just as important a character for this show as the humans that inhabit her.
  • Character background and gripping plot

    Simply amazing. "Out of Gas" pulls you in before the opening credits and never lets go. Definitely one I will watch again and again. Getting to see how the crew came together was a wonderful treat.
    The meat of the episode was not shabby, either. Mal was the clear focus, but since we got a peek into everyone else's past, character development could be limited in the "present" to the captain.
    Both final scenes - the one in the present and the flashback - were memorable. I loved the way the episode came together. A great episode in a great series.
  • One of my favourites

    I love every episode of Firefly but this one has to be my all time favourite.

    I love how every member of the crew came to be on Serenity. With Wash and his moustache, Kaylee and her sexual activities. Inara and Jayne.

    My parent's both found this episode confusing with the three different timelines but i think that they all work well together to tell the whole story; which at the heart is the love affair between a man and his ship.

    Zoe and her dry wit
    Wash's tache
    Inara telling Mal not to call her a whore (which he always does)
    The last scene. Love at first sight.
  • An episode to come back to...

    On first viewing; I must admit this wasn't my favorite episode. However, once completing the series, I found this was an episode I wanted to watch again; to catch the interplay, to understand the flow of action, to see the characterization at work.

    I will note someone suggested "if you only watch one episode, this is the one to watch." I'm not sure that would work; it helps to have seen some of the previous shows so you have a connection with the characters, seen out of context I'm not sure it will have the same impact.

    Very well done, worth watching, worth coming back to.
  • Gut wrenching. A sense of abandonment and loss. Pivotal part of the series showing how they all come together.

    Out of Gas is one of the more cerebral elements of the series. We see the crew when they come together in flashbacks. We then see the flashbacks to the present of the story with the loyalty they have towards each other. The present is why Captain Malcolm Reynolds is alone and gut shot on board. This is a tear jerker with Mal losing his life but trying to give life back into the ship. It starts with the crew bonding as family celebrating at the supper table over Simon's birthday. A surprise to the Tams making them feel part of the crew. The ship's engine room suddenly explodes with the first mate Zoe Alleyne being injured fighting for her life. With no options left, a ship dead in the water, air running out, and no spare parts the captain gives the order to abandon ship. Inara who's heart breaks when leaving Mal seems all is lost unless a miracle happens. It does at a high price. Mal alone is hailed by salvage operators with spare parts in tow. In truth they are pirates coming to hijack the little firefly transport. With the intent of murdering Captain Reynolds he regains the upper hand to take the ship back. He fixes Serenity back on her feet only to drop dead. Luckly Zoe who has come out of her coma gives the order to go back for Mal, typically Zoe Alleyne style. A beautiful written show. Some have said the best. But everyone has their favorite.
  • Beautifully written tale of how the crew of Serenity came together - the best episode of the bunch!

    Told in three timelines: current, within 24 hours and several years ago - this episode is a brilliant example of why the series should have continued. In present time, Mal is badly bloodied and alone on Serenity, trying to make his way to the engine room before he runs out of air and dies. Interspersed with this plotline are flashbacks to how he came to be alone on this ship that has run out of gas and air (shot in a different film stock with cooler colors) and the older plotline showing the introductions of each crewmember to their beloved ship (also shot in yet another film stock with a yellowish tint). The stories are all at once, heartbreaking, funny and tense. The acting is just wonderful as each character goes from being an individual with no real ties to friends to family member. If you ever want to see an amazing and innovative use of backstory and flashback, watch this episode. Just a wonderful episode.
  • If you only watch one episode of this series let it be this!

    This is what I think the best episode of the series. All the episodes are wonderful but there is just something about this one in particular that makes it a series best. We see flash backs for all the characters, who weren't introduced in the first few episodes, and how the crew was formed. We meet them all for the first time again as we meet Serenity for the first time as well.

    Through out which we really see the love the captain has for his ship and his crew. Not to mention the love his crew has for him, it is never more evident then in this episode.
  • Shoulda called Triple A.

    I liked this one, I really did. Most shows wouldn't have been able to handle three time frames in one episode. A lesser program would have had Mal fixing the ship and flashing back only to how he came to be in that predicament, and left out all of those wonderful tidbits about how he and his crew came to be in that cozy little spacecraft, and wouldn't we all have been the sadder for it.

    But honestly, is there anyone in this galaxy of theirs who isn't out to rob everyone they come across? It's amazing that commerce manages to function at all with the amount of piracy they have. Thank God for the Alliance, or it wouldn't be safe to travel anywhere. Who wouldn't like the Alliance?

    You know, I like Mal, I do, he seems like a great guy, but I can't help wondering if there isn't someone else who could contribute to the story. Wash has shown a good deal of depth, and Jayne was finally forced to grow up a little. Hey, he's a Baldwin, he should have some acting chops. Wait, what? Not a Baldwin? Oh. Never mind. And River - still only good for a cheap gag every now and then. Do something with her, Firefly, or get rid of her. Severe mental anguish is not something to poke fun at.
  • amazing!!!

    I think this is the best episode of the series. It was very nice to see how the rest of the cast became part of the crew of Serenity. I think Nathan's acting is superb and he should have one an Emmy for this episode.

    The family that these misfits has formed is strengthen in their need to return to Mal. This episode had a good writing/ directing team (brought over from Buffy/ Angel). All of the technical aspects of this episode work well together to create good story telling. I've always said that Joss should write everything in all his series, but I don't think he could have done a better job that this episode!
  • Cool!

    We see how Serenity came to be, how Capt. Reynolds met the crew, how he found the firefly ship. this is a cool episode. the story was good, the pacing wasn't so fast, but it provided revealing storylines from the past. we get to know the crew a little bit better. the accident in space was really cool, the setting is all in outer space. the flashbacks were really well made, the writers did a good job with this one. the part where mal gets shot by a pirate was done well, the actors did a good job playing that scene.
  • My favorite. A favorite of everyone in my family. All episodes should be exacly like this one (only not, because then the show would suck). Summary: The ship breaks down. With shiny flashbacks.

    This is my favorite episode. It reminds me of the begining of the movie ("Serenity" for the clueless) when there are flashbacks and dream-sequence-things. It is dark, well, in my opinion, since this is my review. The one thing about this episode that will forever haunt me (unless they cover the story line in the comic book *crosses fingers*) was when Simon and Inara are talking and Simon says something like, "I don't want to die on this ship," and in return Inara says, "I don't want to die, period." I'm very glad they were able to cover backstories, slightly, before the show was cancelled. I love backstories best when watching a series. Like the classification says, this was a Character Developement episode, not just in how everyone joined the crew, but in how they reacted to death. I think I've written everything I can think of so I'm gonna go now.
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