The Message

Episode Report Card
Shack: F | 9 USERS: B-
With friends like these...

Speaking of which, we get shots of Serenity heading toward the planet's surface, with Officer Evil!'s ship following. Inside Serenity, Contrivance arranges for some turbulence to knock Kaylee into Tracey's arms. Bleah. This little subplot is such a disappointment, because it doesn't really mean anything. There isn't even any conflict over the alleged attraction between Simon and Kaylee. I think it would have been more interesting if Tracey had bonded with River instead. They've both been involved in mysterious medical procedures of unknown purposes, and a subplot with the two of them would have kept River's arc moving forward. Instead we get blather as Tracey asks about relationships with the crew. He thinks Kaylee and Wash are together. No, she explains that Wash and Zoe are married. Tracey is shocked at the idea of Zoe getting married: "Next you'll be telling me she smiles," he says. Well, yes, she does, and that statement bugs me because I know he wouldn't say that if Zoe were a man. Yes, women in leadership roles are humorless battleaxes, while men are authoritative and professional. Anyway, Tracey thinks it's good that they're all making their own lives and such. Kaylee tries to keep from swooning all over the place.

The ship speeds through some icy canyon. Inside the ship, Officer Evil! has called back, and he's annoyed that they're taking so long. He wants them to land, now. As crew members run around, and Wash claims that he's looking for a landing spot, Book sits there looking at something on one of the little round monitors. He's noticed something odd. There's an Alliance station nearby, yet Officer Evil! hasn't made a single transmission to them to let them know what's going on. Hmmm. Maybe the lack of bellboy uniforms means something after all.

Back in Kaylee's room, she and Tracey continue to bond. He explains he's always getting into trouble like this, and apologizes for bringing them into it. Kaylee says it's no big deal. After all, they can't even fly from one planet to the next without getting in trouble with somebody. Tracey flirts with her some more.

More Emmy-nominated CGI effects entertain as Serenity continues zooming around the icy canyon. Inside the bridge, Wash celebrates because Officer Evil!'s ship is no longer behind them. He assumes that means they lost him. But then he looks up and, through a monitor, realizes that Officer Evil! is flying their ship above the canyon over Serenity and is moseying along just fine. Ha! Snerk. I've always thought there was something stupid about those canyon dogfights, but I could never put my finger on it. And so Officer Evil! starts bombing them. Wash hides the ship under some cover and powers down, hoping Officer Evil! won't be able to find them.

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