We have a tradition in my family of naming vehicles, in the same way that you would name a ship or a horse. I recently came to own a 4x4 Chevrolet Blazer (which is twelve years old, making it the oldest new car I've ever had). I decided to name her "Serenity."

Why? If you haven't previously been aware of the movie Serenity, which is due out in September, allow me to introduce you.

This is going to be one of those movies that comes from a television series, Firefly. Those with highspeed connections who want a sample can download episodes here, apparently with the approval of the studio. Watch one or two, and see if you don't go buy the DVDs so that you can see them without the wait, and in a full-size form. I assume that's why the studio has been letting them post these things.

Firefly was a Western set in space. It's not the first of that ilk (I remember watching as a teenager Sean Connery's Outland, which was just a remake of High Noon, this time set on a space station). They're usually not very good.

This one was. I think it's because it isn't a genre piece. It's a space western, but it didn't have to be. These characters are very close to real, which means they could have fit in anywhere. They just happen to be on a spaceship, in the way that I happen to be in Virginia.

I'm not the only one of the Nation of Riflemen who thinks highly of it. I have seen people suggesting it over at Kim's place in the forums, and at Doc's place in his comments. But it isn't just gunfighters and Red Americans who like it. The thing was introduced to me by arch-liberal Sovay, who adores it, and has a whole host of friends who do likewise.

Give it a try. Start with the pilot, also called "Serenity," which is listed as 1x00 parts 1 and 2 on the download page.

See if it doesn't grab you. I'll bet it will.

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