Who can say what is it that makes us connect with certain shows? It's difficult to come up with any hard and fast rules, after all, people are themselves varied so it makes sense that each person finds something different in each show and each genre to draw them in. But I think it can be safely stated that science fiction and fantasy often produce (or even the more broad title, "cult" shows) more rabid fans because people long to escape. These types of shows take you to new worlds, new places, let your imagination run free blah blah insert cliche here. But, still, it's true. Star Trek may have been the first. But for me, it was Firefly.
Now, let's get one thing straight. I heart Joss Whedon. I belong to a meetup group where we get together once a month and geek out. I'll attend special fan events and other similar stuff. But I don't dress up, or pretend that I actually live in the Firefly universe, or create elaborate shrines to Firefly in my house. If that's your bag, awesome, bully for you. But I do draw a line. I prefer to keep my geekdom internal. Or at least, vaguely hidden beneath a surface of normality.
What's my point? Actually, I'm not sure. All I know is, when reading this essay by Nathan Fillion, (excerpted from Jane Espenson's new book, "Serenity Found: More Unauthorized Essays on Joss Whedon's Firefly Universe") it made me emotional. Which then made me feel partly embarrassed for getting emotional over something like this (just a tv show, right?), but also so privileged that everyone involved with Firefly worked so hard to make this show for people like me, a fan. I'll let Nathan put it into words:
It was only a short time, but Firefly changed me. It changed my whole life. Rotten it’s over? Sure. Regrets? No. No way. What happened, happened. Anything bitter made everything else all the sweeter. I fought the good fight. I was a part of something that resonated with people, and still does.
And here's a bonus interview with Jane Espenson. Enjoy.