I've been reading excellent reviews for Firefly since it first aired, so I was desperate to get the DVD and check it out for myself. The reviews did it justice; this is an excellent series and I'm really quite annoyed that it was cancelled so quickly!
There is so much to enjoy about this show: it is like the wild west in space with lots of cowboy-like stuff such as six shooters, there are interesting planets visited, (but you wont see an alien anywhere if your worried about it), there are spectacular visual effects of spaceships etc, and very good shoot-outs and brawls. There are several groups of baddies who are all interesting, oh, and you can learn chinese swear words, should you feel the need.
By far and away the most interesting thing about this show though is the characters, nine well rounded and interesting people, as you would expect from Joss Whedon. We have the captain of Serenity, Mal Reynolds, and his second officer Zoe, who survived a war together; her husband Wash pilots the ship, and is the resident joker. Kaylee is the brilliant engineer who says that machines talk to her, and that's how she can fix stuff. The final member of the crew is Jayne, a very large and intimidating mercenary with a habit of naming all his weapons. There are three passengers who come aboard in the pilot episode and gradually become part of the crew; Book, a preacher, and Dr Simon Tam and his sister River, who are now both fugitives after he rescued her from a government project. The last character is Inara, a Companion (high class prostitute) with good connections in high places. A very odd mixture of people, but it works brilliantly!
I strongly recommend this excellent series to everyone, and am itching to see Serenity, the movie follow on which is out in early 2005.