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* LoveTriangle: Subverted. It looks like one is forming between Kaylee, Simon and Tracy since Kaylee and Simon have a falling out, and she and Tracy obviously have an interest in each other. However, Simon never finds out about this, and it becomes a moot point when Tracy dies at the end.


* PoorCommunicationKills: The climax has the crew under siege and almost certainly about to die at the hands of an overzealous cop Tracey. Shepherd Book hatches a plan: the first part is surrendering to the cop and telling him they're going to turn Tracey over to him. Tracey, upon hearing this, becomes understandably upset, but it's not until after he's flipped out for several seconds, threatened the crew with a gun, [[KickTheDog held Kaylee hostage]], and finally been ''mortally wounded by Mal'' that they inform him that the rest of the plan was to threaten and blackmail the cop into leaving without actually giving him what he came for. Tracey, rather than angrily demanding why they didn't tell him that in the first place, ''feels bad'' for screwing up the plan before dying moments later.

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* PoorCommunicationKills: The climax has the crew under siege and almost certainly about to die at the hands of an overzealous cop who wants Tracey. Shepherd Book hatches a plan: the first part is surrendering to the cop and telling him they're going to turn Tracey over to him. Tracey, upon hearing this, becomes understandably upset, but it's not until after he's flipped out for several seconds, threatened the crew with a gun, [[KickTheDog held Kaylee hostage]], and finally been ''mortally wounded by Mal'' that they inform him that the rest of the plan was to threaten and blackmail the cop into leaving without actually giving him what he came for. Tracey, rather than angrily demanding why they didn't tell him that in the first place, ''feels bad'' for screwing up the plan before dying moments later.

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'''Original airdate:''' July 28, 2003

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* GiveMeBackMyWallet: Mal grabs a kid attempting to pickpocket him.


* 1DimensionalThinking: Wash flies through a dangerously narrow canyon to try to shake pursuers... before it's revealed that they just flew ''over'' it.

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* 1DimensionalThinking: OneDimensionalThinking: Wash flies through a dangerously narrow canyon to try to shake pursuers... before it's revealed that they just flew ''over'' it.

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* 1DimensionalThinking: Wash flies through a dangerously narrow canyon to try to shake pursuers... before it's revealed that they just flew ''over'' it.


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* CombatPragmatist: In the flashback, Zoe lets an enemy soldier find Tracey (using a comrade as a distraction) before sneaking up on her target and knifing him.

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* CoffinContraband: The crew picks up the body of one of Mal's war buddies, only for the Feds to accuse them of moving contraband. They know this trope is in play, but can't tell what the contraband is [[spoiler: because they're actually specially-synthesized organs intended for transplant; and the corpse isn't actually dead]].

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* DramaticGunCock: Jayne [[InvokedTrope invokes]] this by racking a shotgun to get a hostage taker to turn towards him, allowing Mal a clean shot without having to ShootTheHostage. It is notable that he is actually holding two guns at the time and only cocks the second.

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!!![[AC:Recaps]]: [[{{Recap/Firefly}} Index]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE01Serenity}} 1]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE02TheTrainJob}} 2]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE03Bushwhacked}} 3]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE04Shindig}} 4]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE05Safe}} 5]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE06OurMrsReynolds}} 6]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE07Jaynestown}} 7]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE08OutOfGas}} 8]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE09Ariel}} 9]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE10WarStories}} 10]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE11Trash}} 11]] | '''12''' | [[{{Recap/FireflyE13HeartOfGold}} 13]] | [[{{Recap/FireflyE14ObjectsInSpace}} 14]]

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* PoorCommunicationKills: The climax has the crew under siege and almost certainly about to die at the hands of an overzealous cop Tracey. Shepherd Book hatches a plan: the first part is surrendering to the cop and telling him they're going to turn Tracey over to him. Tracey, upon hearing this, becomes understandably upset, but it's not until after he's flipped out for several seconds, threatened the crew with a gun, [[KickTheDog held Kaylee hostage]], and finally been ''mortally wounded by Mal'' that they inform him that the rest of the plan was to threaten and blackmail the cop into leaving without actually giving him what he came for. Tracey, rather than angrily demanding why they didn't tell him that in the first place, ''feels bad'' for screwing up the plan before dying moments later.


* [[HatShop Hat Etiquette]]: Jayne removes his hat out of respect when Tracey's message is played, and again at the funeral.

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* TheFreakshow: A space station displays an "alien life form", which Simon identifies as a mutated cow fetus.


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* RealityEnsues: Wash tries to lose a pursuing ship by flying into a canyon:
-->'''Wash:''' They're not behind us anymore!
-->''(Looks up and sees that the other ship simply flew over)''
-->'''Wash:''' I didn't think of that...


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* TreasureChestCavity: The crew suspects momentarily that Tracy's body may have been used to smuggle some sort of valuable cargo. It was, except he ain't dead, and the cargo are artificial vital organs which have replaced his own.
-->'''Zoe:''' You really think there's something in there?\\
'''Mal:''' Using corpses for smuggling is a time-honored repulsive custom.\\
'''Jayne:''' Maybe it's gold.\\
'''Zoe:''' And maybe he was a friend of ours and you need to show more respect.\\
'''Jayne:''' I got respect. I'm just sayin' (''points to body'') Gold!


->''"When you can't run anymore, you crawl and when you can't do that, well...yeah, you know the rest."''

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->''"When you can't run anymore, you crawl and when you can't do that, well... yeah, you know the rest."''



The crew of the ''Serenity'' has stopped at a space station's bazaar to try and pawn off the Lassiter they just stole, with no success due to its rarity and Mal's refusal to let Inara get involved by contacting her own potential buyers. In the meantime, Kaylee and Simon are checking out a hawker that claims to have solid proof of alien life (but is really just a cow fetus in a jar). The two seem to be hitting it off on their date, but Simon mentions how she's the only girl who's not married, professional, or related to her and she storms off thinking that he views her as the bottom of the barrel.

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The crew of the ''Serenity'' has stopped at a space station's bazaar to try and pawn off the Lassiter they just stole, with no success due to its rarity and Mal's refusal to let Inara get involved by contacting her own potential buyers. In the meantime, Kaylee and Simon are checking out a hawker that claims to have solid proof of alien life (but (which is really just a cow fetus in a jar). The two seem to be hitting it off on their date, but Simon mentions how she's the only girl who's not married, professional, or related to her him, and she storms off thinking that he views her as the bottom of the barrel.



A flashback ensues to the Battle of Du-Khang from the Unification War. Tracey is a green private who's narrowly saved by Zoe when he tries to sit and eat in the Buddhist temple the Browncoats are holding, opening himself to an ambush. As Mal arrives under heavy fire, they discuss how their lieutenant has completely broken under the strain and is no longer able to issue orders. When Tracey says that he doesn't want to die defending Du-Khang, Mal tells him "Everybody dies, Tracey. Someone's carrying a bullet for you right now, doesn't even know it. The trick is, die of old age before it finds you." The Alliance forces breach the temple and Tracy is severely wounded, forcing Mal to carry him to safety.

Cutting back to the present day, Mal and Zoe openly wonder why they would have had Tracey's body mailed to them (as there's no return address to trace). Duul wants the body gone, as mailing human cargo is illegal, so they haul the coffin and crate aboard ''Serenity''.

While searching Tracey, they find a recorder clutched in his hands and play it. Tracey's recording reveals that he had fallen in with "untrustworthy folk" and was expecting to be murdered, and so he trusted his old war buddies to take his body to St. Albans for burial on the family plot. The crew unhesitatingly agrees to follow Tracey's last wishes, and Wash sets a course for St. Albans. Back in the post office, an Alliance officer named Womack arrives and threatens Duul into revealing who claimed the body.

Back aboard ''Serenity'', Simon finds that Kaylee has repeatedly been listening to Tracey's recording in her bunk and he begins to feel unwanted. Jayne and Book discuss how Jayne reacts to death. They find that River has crawled on top of the coffin and finds it "comfortable" to be there. Mal and Zoe are drinking with Inara and recounting stories of Tracey's sense of humor, and it becomes clear that they're both saddened by his death. The ship suddenly rocks from a nearby explosion, and they rush up to the bridge. Womack has fired a warning shot at them and demands that the "stolen" crate be handed over to the Alliance ship. Wash keeps Womack occupied while the crew searches the crate for any sign of valuables, but find nothing. With no other options, they decide to perform an autopsy on Tracey. The corpse suddenly comes alive as Simon makes the first cut and attacks him in a panic, before Mal subdues him.

The crew dress and treat Tracey, who had only been drugged to fake death. He reveals that as his latest bad decision, he's allowed himself to become a living incubator for smuggled human organs; Womack was paying him to have all of his internal organs temporarily replaced with lab-grown ones, which he would then have removed and replaced with his originals at a clinic in Ariel. Tracey attempted to double-cross Womack for a buyer willing to pay three times as much, but the corrupt Alliance officer found out and had the new buyer murdered. Tracey paid someone to drug him to fake his death, hoping that he could get Zoe and Mal to ferry him back home where he could hide. Unfortunately, he failed to anticipate Womack trying to recover the organs.

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A flashback ensues to the Battle of Du-Khang from the Unification War. Tracey is a green private who's narrowly saved by Zoe when he tries to sit and eat in the Buddhist temple the Browncoats are holding, opening himself to an ambush. As Mal arrives under heavy fire, they discuss how their lieutenant has completely broken under the strain and is no longer able to issue orders. When Tracey says that he doesn't want to die defending Du-Khang, Mal tells him him, "Everybody dies, Tracey. Someone's carrying a bullet for you right now, doesn't even know it. The trick is, die of old age before it finds you." The Alliance forces breach the temple and Tracy is severely wounded, forcing Mal to carry him to safety.

Cutting back to the present day, Mal and Zoe openly wonder why they would have had Tracey's body mailed to them (as them, as there's no return address to trace).trace. Duul wants the body gone, as mailing human cargo is illegal, so they haul the coffin and crate aboard ''Serenity''.

While searching Tracey, they find a recorder clutched in his hands and play it. Tracey's recording reveals that he had fallen in with "untrustworthy folk" and was expecting to be murdered, and so he trusted his old war buddies to take his body to St. Albans for burial on the family plot. The crew unhesitatingly agrees to follow Tracey's last wishes, and Wash sets a course for St. Albans. Back in at the post office, an Alliance officer named Womack arrives and threatens Duul into revealing who claimed the body.

Back aboard ''Serenity'', Simon finds that Kaylee has repeatedly been listening to Tracey's recording in her bunk and he begins to feel unwanted. Jayne and Book discuss how Jayne reacts to death. They find that River has crawled on top of the coffin and finds it "comfortable" to be there. Mal and Zoe are drinking with Inara and recounting stories of Tracey's sense of humor, and it becomes clear that they're both saddened by his death. The ship suddenly rocks from a nearby explosion, and they rush up to the bridge. Womack has fired a warning shot at them and demands that the "stolen" crate be handed over to the Alliance ship. Wash keeps Womack occupied while the crew searches the crate for any sign of valuables, but find nothing. With no other options, they decide to perform an autopsy on Tracey. The corpse suddenly comes alive as Simon makes the first cut incision and attacks him in a panic, before Mal subdues him.

The crew dress dresses and treat treats Tracey, who had only been drugged to fake death. He reveals that as his latest bad decision, he's allowed himself to become a living incubator for smuggled human organs; Womack was paying him to have all of his internal organs temporarily replaced with lab-grown ones, which he would then have removed and replaced with his originals at a clinic in on Ariel. Tracey attempted to double-cross Womack for a buyer willing to pay three times as much, but the corrupt Alliance officer found out and had the new buyer murdered. Tracey paid someone to drug him to fake his death, hoping that he could get Zoe and Mal to ferry him back home where he could hide. Unfortunately, he failed to anticipate Womack trying to recover the organs.
organs, even from a "corpse."



----






* BaitAndSwitchComparison:

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* BaitAndSwitchComparison: When Zoe and Wash walk into the room with the "alien life-form" (cow fetus).



%%* {{Flashback}}s

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%%* {{Flashback}}s* {{Flashback}}: To the Battle of Du-Khang during the Independence War, where Mal and Zoe fought with Tracy and had some pertinent discussions.



* [[HatShop Hat Etiquette]]: Jayne removing his hat out of respect at the funeral.
* IconicItem[=/=]NiceHat: The first appearance of Jayne's iconic hat. Also see the main page for NiceHat.
* {{Jerkass}}: The corrupt cop's already a piece of work, but on the way out he takes careful note to insult Jayne's hat, and spit on Serenity.

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* [[HatShop Hat Etiquette]]: Jayne removing removes his hat out of respect when Tracey's message is played, and again at the funeral.
* IconicItem[=/=]NiceHat: IconicItem: The first appearance of Jayne's iconic hat. Also see the main page for NiceHat.
* {{Jerkass}}: The corrupt cop's already a piece of work, but on the way out he takes careful note to insult Jayne's hat, and spit on Serenity.''Serenity''.



%%* NotQuiteDead
* RealitySubtext: While shooting the funeral scene, the cast learned that the series had been canned. [[{{Tearjerker}} It shows]].
* RidiculouslyDifficultRoute: Invoked by Mal by having Wash fly Serenity through a very narrow, twisty and uneven canyon (which even AcePilot Wash visibly finds difficult) in order to escape the (larger) ship that is chasing them. However, the police aboard that ship defy the trope by simply flying their ship above the canyon and shooting at them from there.
* ShoutOut: The pig fetus in a jar may be a reference to the ''Series/{{Angel}}'' episode "Orpheus" in which Willow appeared to re-ensoul Angel.
--> '''Willow:''' There's lots of jars in the world. Can't shatter 'em all. Oh, I mean you could, but, good things come in jars - [[BreadEggsMilkSquick peanut butter, jelly, those two-headed fetal pigs at the Natural History Museum.]]

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%%* NotQuiteDead
* RealitySubtext: While shooting the funeral scene, the cast learned
-->'''Mal:''' Woo-hoo! I'm right here! I'm right here! You want some of this? Yeah, you do! Come on! Come on! [...] They don't like it when you shoot at 'em. Figured that the series had been canned. [[{{Tearjerker}} It shows]].
out myself.
* NotQuiteDead: Tracey's only taken a drug that fakes death, just as Simon and River did in "[[Recap/FireflyE09Ariel Ariel]]."
* RidiculouslyDifficultRoute: Invoked by Mal by having Wash fly Serenity ''Serenity'' through a very narrow, twisty and uneven canyon (which even AcePilot Wash visibly finds difficult) in order to escape the (larger) ship that is chasing them. However, the police aboard that ship defy the trope by simply flying their ship above the canyon and shooting at them from there.
* ShoutOut: The pig fetus in a jar may be a reference to the ''Series/{{Angel}}'' episode "Orpheus" "[[Recap/AngelS04E15Orpheus Orpheus]]" in which Willow appeared appears to re-ensoul Angel.
--> '''Willow:''' -->'''Willow:''' There's lots of jars in the world. Can't shatter 'em all. Oh, I mean you could, but, good things come in jars - [[BreadEggsMilkSquick jars--[[BreadEggsMilkSquick peanut butter, jelly, those two-headed fetal pigs at the Natural History Museum.]]



* WithCatlikeTread: A flashback shows Zoe warn Tracey never to let the the enemy know where you are, the camera pans to Mal doing the complete opposite of what she said.

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* WithCatlikeTread: A flashback shows Zoe warn Tracey never to let the the enemy know where you are, are; the camera pans to Mal doing the complete opposite of what she said.


* RealitySubtext: The cast learnt during the funeral scene the series had been canned. It [[{{Tearjerker}} shows]].

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* RealitySubtext: The cast learnt during While shooting the funeral scene scene, the cast learned that the series had been canned. It [[{{Tearjerker}} It shows]].



* SpotTheThread: Book realizes the cop crooked because he hasn't called for backup from the Alliance military base that's on that same planet, implying he doesn't want them to know he's there any more than ''Serenity's'' crew does.

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* SpotTheThread: Book realizes the cop is crooked because he hasn't called for backup from the Alliance military base that's on that same planet, implying he doesn't want them to know he's there any more than ''Serenity's'' crew does.


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-->'''Zoe:''' Of course, there are other schools of thought.

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