GENERAL DISCUSSIONS

Inara's Shame

POSTED BY: IREMIST
UPDATED: Friday, May 23, 2008 07:39
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Friday, May 16, 2008 8:15 AM

IREMIST


Watchin' Shindig on the Sci-Fi marathon just now, and I had a thought. Don't quite know if it's been posted, but in my defence I tried Google-ing it...

Anyway it's when Mal says "Guess I shoulda stayed out of your world"

And Inara says "MY world- If it is that..."

Well, my thought is that maybe Inara comes from the peasant class. Like maybe her Momma pulled a "Fancy" like Reba McEntire's song.
Always hiding who she was and she never said anything about her family. Could explain why she is more comfortable on a ship with other lowbrows
and why she sometimes "dresses down" a little.
And why she was friends with Nandi even though Nandi clearly wasn't high class for a Companion. Could be one thing she's runnin' from


Well, that's my thought of the day (ya, I only get one!)... And I appologize if it's been said before, but we got newbies a plenty who may have thoughts....

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Friday, May 16, 2008 9:44 AM

DAVESHAYNE


Quote:

Originally posted by Iremist:
Well, my thought is that maybe Inara comes from the peasant class. Like maybe her Momma pulled a "Fancy" like Reba McEntire's song.
Always hiding who she was and she never said anything about her family. Could explain why she is more comfortable on a ship with other lowbrows
and why she sometimes "dresses down" a little.
And why she was friends with Nandi even though Nandi clearly wasn't high class for a Companion. Could be one thing she's runnin' from



Well this is a new theory to me. I expect it's flat out wrong but it is new. Inara is a companion. That makes her defacto about the highest class there is in the 'Verse. Even so I never get the feeling that there is any shame attached to 'Nara's situation. She is certainly running from something but I get the feeling it has more to do with the mysterious vial (and all that suggests) than some embarrassment at being born in the servants quarters. I don't recall Inara ever dressing down particularly she very much brings her elegance with her wherever she goes, even to the dirtier corners of the 'Verse. Also Nandi purposefully roughed her image up to fit in on the rim. "So I trucked out to the border and learned to say ain't" One assumes that she held herself in quite the same fashion as the rest of the women in House Madrassa before she had the fatal run in with the dulcimer.

David

'Geeks can't admit that anything worthwhile was invented before 1981. Soon, "making cocoa" will be called "milk hacking."' - Lore Sjoberg

http://xkcd.com/386/

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Friday, May 16, 2008 10:39 AM

PHYRELIGHT


Morena once said that Inara became a companion because it was a family business. I believe she said it at the Serenity Con last year (the one where Nathan confronts Alan about blaming him for the Serenity 2 rumors last year).



Darksiders can keep their cookies. We have better writers.

Grrr. Argghh.

Patiently waiting to see Cap'n Hammerpants sing!

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Friday, May 16, 2008 10:48 AM

IREMIST


The Lady hath many secrets, I merely suggested one....

Flat out wrong, hmmm. Well, unless you are Joss or his maker and I get told different, it's open for creative speculation.

Also, I didn't say I thought there was any shame attached to the position of Companion, I was thinking there would be stigma attached to being from a poorer class. I agree she was also running from maybe a past event that led her to carry such a vial, but I feel Inara is a lady of many mysteries...

PS- That little red and white polka dot number she wore in that bar in Shindig would hardly be High class companion attire, at least to me.
Also, there is an interview with the costume designer on the web somewhere that said something about Inara can't really turn off being a conpanion but that she does slightly "dress down" on occasion, though it's hard to tell...

PSS I think the run-in with the dulcimer and Nandi hints at a history of willful behavior, but also pure speculation...

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Friday, May 16, 2008 10:54 AM

IREMIST


Interesting, PhyreLight

Do you know if they elaborated further on that?
Specifically, did they say clearly that it was a COMPANION business?

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Friday, May 16, 2008 11:04 AM

ASARIAN


Quote:

Originally posted by Iremist:

And Inara says "MY world- If it is that..."


As far as your theory goes, I err on the side of "flat out wrong", too. But it's an interesting observation you make nonetheless. I think it attests to Inara's ambivalent feelings as to where she wants to be: yes, she wants the high life, the luxury, the respect and high social status; but part of her just as soon live on Serenity. I think the comment was just her way of expressing the latter. She'll never come out and say she'd rather be with Mal and his rogue crew.... for one, because it's not true -- not entirely, at least. She truly does love aspects of her 'high' life; but, at the same time, cannot escape realizing "the lie of it" (or, at least, knows it ultimately to be empty). And when hearing it referred to so expressly as HER world, part of her, almost instinctively, recoils a bit from the thought.


--
"Mei-mei, everything I have is right here." -- Simon Tam

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Friday, May 16, 2008 1:27 PM

DAVESHAYNE


Quote:

Originally posted by Iremist:
Also, I didn't say I thought there was any shame attached to the position of Companion, I was thinking there would be stigma attached to being from a poorer class.



Right, I got that. I'm arguing A) that once she became a companion (beginning her training at 12 so rather early on) her class was high regardless of where she started out and B) There is no evidence that I can see that Inara shows any particular shame about any aspect of her life. Regret a few times but no shame. Also C) no evidence to suggest she was born to a low class family.



David

'Geeks can't admit that anything worthwhile was invented before 1981. Soon, "making cocoa" will be called "milk hacking."' - Lore Sjoberg

http://xkcd.com/386/

I has myspace - http://www.myspace.com/daveshayneforpresident

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Friday, May 16, 2008 1:45 PM

TRAVELER


Inara may not be part of Atherton's world, but that does not mean she is of a lower class or from more modest means. There are politicians, high finance business people, prominent clergy, and other sociaties that may work with each other, but are from different worlds.

There must be instances where Companions are from poorer families who give up their child knowing they will have a better life as a Companion. An attractive child may be accepted if the Companion Order feels there is promise in the child to meet their standards.

There are alot of Catholic families that want one of their children to be a priest or nun. This could hold for some families who live near and are influenced by a Companion household.

The way Inara practices Buddism and that there was a Buddist shrine at the Companion Order that Inara was teaching at, in the movie, suggests a stong influence to the spirtual beliefs of Budda. So maybe Buddist families are drawn to the Companion Order. Of course I don't see Buddists getting involved in this lifestyle, in our time, but this is happening 500 years in the future, so who knows what changes may occur in the Buddist thinking.

So if Inara comes from a Buddist background she would be from a different world then the people at the party, or let say Atherton's world. She is trained to entertain so she is trained to fit in. From what I saw in a couple of the episodes she also helps young men make the passage into maturity. Well sexual maturity, although she passes on a lot of wisdom while she has their attention. Did you notice that in the first episode when we first see her she is with a very young man and again with another young man in Jaynestown. Even in the episode brought up here, "Shindig", before she responds to Atherton's wave she is seriously listening to the the invitation of a very young man, to qoute "You do me the honor of.....". So it seems she performs a type civil service to the communty by popping young men's cherrys. This is quoting the father and Jayne's arch enemy in Jaynetown.

So Inara is not just a high class "whore". She performs a service and from what I gather she does a very good job of it.

So Inara could come from modest means and the vile she keeps in the box may contain anything. She may be suffering from an addiction. We could be looking at heroin or another drug when she opens that box. After all one last heroin trip, before you die by Reavers, seems a probable answer to what she was contemplating. So this may be what she is running from. Maybe heroin is to easy to get at the Companion House she was living at.

This is just my ponderings. Nothing set in stone. I leave that to Joss. It is his verse and he may do with it what he will. After all, I hear no one at this forum complaining much.

Thank you for the thread. I enjoy thinking about these happenings in the verse. Opens the mind to a lot of ideas.


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Traveler

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Friday, May 16, 2008 3:14 PM

PHYRELIGHT


Quote:

Originally posted by Iremist:
Interesting, PhyreLight

Do you know if they elaborated further on that?
Specifically, did they say clearly that it was a COMPANION business?

Yeah. Someone asked Morena how Inara became a companion, and she said, "It was the family business." Fallowed by laughter and a funny look from Nathan (of course). She didn't say much more than that.



Darksiders can keep their cookies. We have better writers.

Grrr. Argghh.

Patiently waiting to see Cap'n Hammerpants sing!

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Friday, May 16, 2008 5:09 PM

IREMIST


Quote:

Originally posted by PhyreLight:
"It was the family business." Fallowed by laughter and a funny look from Nathan (of course). She didn't say much more than that.

So could it have been a joke? Or was she serious?

(Playing Devils Advocate) even if it was a family business doesn't definitively mean parent's, could be rich aunt, uncle, cousin ect.

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Friday, May 16, 2008 5:16 PM

PHYRELIGHT


Oh, yeah. She was serious. There was a clip of it on youtube, but I can't find it anywhere.



Darksiders can keep their cookies. We have better writers.

Grrr. Argghh.

Patiently waiting to see Cap'n Hammerpants sing!

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Friday, May 16, 2008 5:23 PM

IREMIST


Quote:

Originally posted by traveler:


Thank you for the thread. I enjoy thinking about these happenings in the verse. Opens the mind to a lot of ideas.





No, thank you for your lovely and well thought out response.

Also I think I should mention Inara is my favourite character and I would in no way try to demean her. Character speculation is what we do for fun here when it rains which is all the gorram time...



Oh, and Asarian I haven't forgotten you. I agree that Inara was definately torn. Ooh-TORN that's a you-tube vid I haven't looked up yet
BRB

Iremist leaves humming...........


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Friday, May 16, 2008 5:32 PM

TRAVELER


Quote:

Originally posted by Iremist:
Quote:

when it rains which is all the gorram time...




Oh. Do you live in Wisconsin too?

Your Wisconsin buddy;
traveler




http://www.imdb.com/mymovies/list?l=28764731
Traveler

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Friday, May 16, 2008 6:26 PM

EMPIREX


Definitely an interesting possibility! If there's any truth to it, I favor Traveler's explanation.

"Can you, for a moment, imagine how depressing it is to teach one thousand years of masculine ineptitude? Why do you think there are so few women historians? I'll tell you why. Because history is not such a frolic for women as it is for men... History is a commentary on the various and continuing incapabilities of men. History is women following behind with a bucket and a mop." - Alan Bennett, "The History Boys"

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Friday, May 16, 2008 6:40 PM

BORIS


I always got the impression that Inara was upperclass and ashamed of that and what it stands for on some level, but not ashamed of her profession. I also got the impression that Mal's roots were not as poor as he made out...maybe his mother struggled for a bit but eventually she was doing all right and they were well off. So Mal was well looked after and well educated, but still expected to pull his weight and earn what he was given. So if you think about it, Mal and Inara are not that different..ie both hiding something about what shaped them and their opinions.

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Friday, May 16, 2008 9:13 PM

YAHACHUSPAIZ


Has anybody tossed around the idea that the black vial was poison? She believed she was a bout to be raped and eaten alive. Uhhh, I'd go ahead and reach for the poison. Unless I've missed something I don't know how one can speculate it is anything else. Hell, I've been wrong before. Somebody fill me in if theres info I be missin!

For the love of your god I hate FOX!!!

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Saturday, May 17, 2008 12:29 AM

SPACEANJL


The vial was a toxin that would poison anyone having relations with the Companion thus injected, according to the original Tim Minear idea. Whether it was then also fatal to the Companion, and thus a last resort, i have no idea.

Of course, if not, that raises an interesting sideline into what other services Companions perform...

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Saturday, May 17, 2008 12:33 AM

BIGRICHARD


I initially thought it was a form of poison or something, but after watching the commentary, Joss dismisses this saying something along the lines of "it works in the context of the episode, and therefore the episodes that were made, but this is not what it was, and it would have been explained in a future episode."

I seem to remember reading somewhere that Tim Minear had said it would kill whoever she had sex with? So therefore if the Reavers raped her, they would've died. So hopefully they'd rape her before killing/harming her in any other way. Though, if that were the case, would she ever have gotten over being violated by a Reaver?

I'd also like to add that in my opinion, Inara enjoys her job, she likes what she does, how she does it, etc. etc., but she doesn't like the world that her profession is a part of. That's why she joined the crew of Serenity. She services customers, but aside from that just stays with the crew/ship, so she obviously is scared/offended/annoyed/whatever by the world which surrounds her profession. She likes the true friendship and honesty that is found in the crew of Serenity and the places it goes to, rather than the falsities and problems with that of the rich folk.

Just my 2 cents...

"Never f$@% with a browncoat dude...." - Kevin Smith

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Saturday, May 17, 2008 3:01 AM

NCBROWNCOAT


Quote:

Originally posted by boris:
I always got the impression that Inara was upperclass and ashamed of that and what it stands for on some level, but not ashamed of her profession. I also got the impression that Mal's roots were not as poor as he made out...maybe his mother struggled for a bit but eventually she was doing all right and they were well off. So Mal was well looked after and well educated, but still expected to pull his weight and earn what he was given. So if you think about it, Mal and Inara are not that different..ie both hiding something about what shaped them and their opinions.



You and I think a lot alike. Inara is from maybe the upper middle class who wanted more for their daugher,or may be even an upper class father with a Companion for a mother. That would fit in with what Moreana said.

I also agree with you about Mal. I get the impression (maybe from Mal's apparent education shown though out the series and movie and remarks he makes in OMR) that the Reynolds ranch was a success, what with 50 hands. That would indicate a fairly prosperous and large ranch.

I also picture Mal's Ma as a very strong woman who made a success when everyone thought she would fail. She would also insist on a good education for her son but at the same time insisting that he do his chores and learn how to run the ranch so that Mal could eventually take it over.

This seems to have come out in some of my "young Mal" fics. (Yes, shameless plug!).


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Saturday, May 17, 2008 3:08 AM

MAL4PREZ


So, I put some thought into Inara's situation for fic purposes, and here's what I came up with. I agree with other posters that she is very much *not* ashamed of her job. She's proud of it, and obviously thinks of it as more than sex. The Jaynestown and War Stories clients are examples of clients she enjoys - she gets to know them as vulnerable human beings and can then provide some sort of counselling. This fits into her general role on the ship, which I've heard show writers refer to as "motherly". She's a caretaker. I think that's inherent and central to her personality.

Unfortunately, there is the occasional bad client like Ath. Hey, no job is perfect. I think she says she doesn't fit in with his world because she didn't become a Companion to sip cocktails with the snobby elite. I think she's human enough to enjoy the luxury and nice outfits, but she's not into it for self-glorification. She blushes and isn't pleased when Ath tells her that every man wants to be in her bed. To her, that's not the point.

This has been the bedrock for my fanfictional background for Inara. Whether she comes from a rich or poor background, she chose to be a Companion so she could be in a caretaker role - in a safe way. I guess that she didn't want to be a caretaker in the usual domestic way. Why not? I invented a strained relationship with her birth family which turned her off to the idea of marriage and child-bearing. In my fic, her own birth family happened to be poor, but that detail isn't necessary. It's her alienation from them that matters.

This fits other evidence from the series. First, that she never talks about her background or family; second, that when family and children come up in conversation, she becomes noticably tense. (Bushwhacked: "Families?", OMR: "Can you imagine me with a passel a children underfoot - Get out!" or something like that, HoG: she wants to leave because these close relationships are a trap to her.)

EDIT: This doesn't fit what Morena said... unless Inara's mother was a whore. Hmmm....

Also, Mal never said he grew up poor. He mentioned a ranch with lots of hands, I think that entails some financial comfort. And he's decently educated, (he's read a poem) very much like the child on a big ranch in the old wild west who had good tutors, enough to give him some knowledge but not to change his accent.

-----------------------------------------------
hmm-burble-blah, blah-blah-blah, take a left

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Saturday, May 17, 2008 3:10 AM

PHYRELIGHT


I FOUND THE VIDEO!!! This is the link: http://www.creationent.com/video/ser-alan-nat-mor-bur07.htm, and she answers the question about 3/4 into the video. It's also preceded by a funny back story about Wash from Alan.



Darksiders can keep their cookies. We have better writers.

Grrr. Argghh.

Patiently waiting to see Cap'n Hammerpants sing!

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Saturday, May 17, 2008 4:01 AM

GWEK


ON INARA'S BACKGROUND: I don't think that "dead wrong" is necessarily the way I would go, so much as "not really relevant." Regardless of where she came from, Inara is now a Companion and high class. As folks have said, she demonstrates no shame and no desire to look back.

I believe the comment about Wing's world maybe not being hers should be taken in a completely different light. It's a comment on the crew of Serenity and how they--literally and figuratively--exist between worlds. Just as Mal SHOULD be part of Badger's world--but he's not--Inara SHOULD fit into Wing's world--yet she finds herself more at home with the rough-and-tumble crew of Serenity.

Look at every romantic pairing on Serenity. Each duo is from completely "different worlds" and the ONLY place they can really form as a couple is a neutral ground like Serenity. THAT, I think, is in the neighborhood of what Inara is saying. It's an admission that although she's from Wing's "world", Serenity is her home now.

(Check out the commentary on the episode, where, if I recall correctly, some of these themes are discussed.)


ON THE BLACK VIAL: Joss never dismisses it as a toxin. He says that the one thing that it's NOT is a suicide kit... although that's what many mistakenly take it for in the pilot. He adds that since they never explored what it really was, there's no problem with folks believing that it's a suicide kit.

Tim Minear discusses a discarded episode idea where Inara is captured by Reavers and gang-raped and when the crew rescues her, all the Reavers are dead because Inara has some way to kill anyone she has sex with. When asked flat out if this was the black vial, Minear said he didn't know (and I believe later said that it was not), but I don't see what other conclusion we can draw.


ON MORENA'S COMMENT: Haven't watched the clip, but from the context, it seems possible that she's either joking or misinterpreting something that Joss said (remember, in the Joss-Verse, "family" often doesn't even literally mean "family"). While I won't dismiss the comment outright, I also wouldn't give it too much weight.

www.stillflying.net: "Here's how it might have been..."

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Saturday, May 17, 2008 4:12 AM

BIGRICHARD


Cheers GWEK, that was really helpful.
Sorry if I steered some of you wrong with my comments, seems I should check my facts :P

And I most definitely agree with you on Inara's background and current lifestyle.

"Never f$@% with a browncoat dude...." - Kevin Smith

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Saturday, May 17, 2008 7:23 AM

YAHACHUSPAIZ


Ahh, i dig it homey. Thanks for fillin me in.

For the love of your god I really hate FOX!!!

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Sunday, May 18, 2008 11:02 AM

ASARIAN


Quote:

Originally posted by GWEK:


I believe the comment about Wing's world maybe not being hers should be taken in a completely different light. It's a comment on the crew of Serenity and how they--literally and figuratively--exist between worlds. Just as Mal SHOULD be part of Badger's world--but he's not--Inara SHOULD fit into Wing's world--yet she finds herself more at home with the rough-and-tumble crew of Serenity.



Why, I find that very much in line with what I said on the subject my own self. :) Inara is definitely torn: a citizen of neither world, so to speak. I don't have the Firefly box at hand here to quote the literal words (visiting my parents at the moment), but I believe Jane Espenson, who wrote Shindig, said something to the effect of: "Inara is as uncomfortable in Atheron's world, as Mal is at Badger's tea-party."





--
"Mei-mei, everything I have is right here." -- Simon Tam

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Thursday, May 22, 2008 9:39 PM

MISSTRESSAHARA


Quote:

This fits other evidence from the series. First, that she never talks about her background or family; second, that when family and children come up in conversation, she becomes noticably tense. (Bushwhacked: "Families?", OMR: "Can you imagine me with a passel a children underfoot - Get out!" or something like that, HoG: she wants to leave because these close relationships are a trap to her.)



I must disagree with this idea. That scene, if you watch carefully, isn't her disgust at the idea of family, but her becoming upset with Mal talking about being with another woman besides her and having a family with (Saffron). Now don't forget he's officially (at least by the laws of that planet) married to Saffron, which of course upsets Inara because she loves Mal and secretly wants to be with him. Listen to her last line when she says "Can I please have 5 minutes to alone" (near enough quote) Her voice chokes, like she's trying hard not to burst into tears. And you can see it on her face. Mal may have been joking, but she was taking it seriously.

And if the idea of a family was so unappealing she wouldn't have made such close bonds with Kaylee, River, Book, and everyone else. I think it's the sense of family that draws her to Serenity more than anything. River said about the cows in Safe "Lost souls." That's who everyone on board are. Lost souls looking for something and finding a small part of it on Serenity.

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


DON'T FREAK OUT

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

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Friday, May 23, 2008 2:15 AM

MAL4PREZ


Quote:

Originally posted by Misstressahara:
That scene, if you watch carefully, isn't her disgust at the idea of family, but her becoming upset with Mal talking about being with another woman besides her and having a family with (Saffron).

Hey, don't need to watch carefully to see that she's upset about Saffron! That's pretty clear.

But with Joss, there is often more than one thing happening at a time, and that's what I watch carefully for. Inara is upset over Mal's "marriage" for sure, but her upsetness turns from bitter snark to the near tearful breakdown you describe *after* the family issue comes up. This reaction is what I'd expect from... say... a woman who can't have children hearing the man she secretly loves suggest that he'd enjoy having a big family.

Not saying that's how it is, I'm saying that's how it could be.

Quote:

And if the idea of a family was so unappealing she wouldn't have made such close bonds with Kaylee, River, Book, and everyone else. I think it's the sense of family that draws her to Serenity more than anything.
You misunderstand me. I never said that Inara is "disgusted" with the idea of family or finds it "unappealing". I think her situation is more complicated than that. It must be, because no matter how she's drawn to the crew, that family feeling is precisely what makes her leave! In HoG, she says:

"I learned something from Nandi. Not just from what happened, but from her. The family she made, the strength of her love for them. That's what kept them together. When you live with that kind of strength, you get tied to it, you can't break away. And you never want to.

"There's something that I... that I should have done a long while ago. And I'm sorry -- for both of us -- that it took me this long. I'm leaving."

WTF? This surprised the hell out of me first time I saw it. But, however illogical, the first paragraph relates to the second. Inara is drawn to this crew, she loves them and thinks of them as family, but she can't accept this kind of bond without it being a trap. "You can't break away," she says. She's leaving before she can love them enough to reach that point.

There must be some reason she has this reaction to them. Given that this is a Joss show, I think it's more than her disappointed love for Mal and hurt over seeing him with Nandi. Joss doesn't write bodice-rippers where *everything* is about romance. Clearly, there's more going on with Inara, some reason that she can't let herself freely love the crew - and Mal.

Until we get more stories from Joss, the exact reason will remain hidden to me. But that won't stop me from making my own stuff up.

-----------------------------------------------
hmm-burble-blah, blah-blah-blah, take a left

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Friday, May 23, 2008 7:39 AM

ASARIAN


Quote:

Originally posted by mal4prez:

"There's something that I... that I should have done a long while ago. And I'm sorry -- for both of us -- that it took me this long. I'm leaving."

WTF? This surprised the hell out of me first time I saw it. But, however illogical, the first paragraph relates to the second. Inara is drawn to this crew, she loves them and thinks of them as family, but she can't accept this kind of bond without it being a trap. "You can't break away," she says. She's leaving before she can love them enough to reach that point.


In earnest, I'm thinking this really WAS primarily about Mal. Not really because she's so hurt over seeing Mal with Nandi, though. Sure as the turn of the worlds, that stung a mite. But I think Inara suddenly realized her trap: she loves Mal, but can never really bring herself to say it (not even to herself, most like). Seeing him with Nandi, I think she realized, in that painful moment, that this issue would never know a resolution. After all, she can't really blame Mal for it, now can she? She never made her feelings clear to Mal (well, she actually did, but in ways too subtle for for Mal to pick up on). I think, seeing him with Nandi, she understood that the only logical outcome of her staying aboard Serenity would be a continual replay of the same event. Not having opted for an outspoken relationship with Mal, she knows that, a year or so from now, she'll find herself in a similar situation. And time and again. In short, she realized she had painted herself into an impossible corner. Not that nothing is possible between them (I think there is); but, from Nara's perspective at the time, her decision seemed like the only sensible thing to do.

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Originally posted by mal4prez:

Quote:

Originally posted by Misstressahara

And if the idea of a family was so unappealing she wouldn't have made such close bonds with Kaylee, River, Book, and everyone else. I think it's the sense of family that draws her to Serenity more than anything.
You misunderstand me. I never said that Inara is "disgusted" with the idea of family or finds it "unappealing". I think her situation is more complicated than that. It must be, because no matter how she's drawn to the crew, that family feeling is precisely what makes her leave!




I think 'family' is a complex matter for Inara. On the one hand 'family' stands for having an exclusive partner, for settling down, for hearing the pitter-patter of tiny feet in large combat boots, etc. :) Being a Companion, I reckon this is not precisely her bag (almost can't be, really, as it kinda runs counter to her own lifestyle), On the other hand, Inara, as a person, is actually very much in the family way. This, I believe, is Inara's perpetual tragedy: she's much more nurturing, caring and familial than her profession allows her to be (though, I'm sure the social/therapeutic aspect of Companioning makes up for that in part). Like with the situation with Nandi, eventually Inara will have to make a choice; not for or against riding along with Mal, per se, but between living the high, but largely, empty life, and fulfilling the needs of her heart (leader a decidedly poorer material life, but having the crew as family). I think that, at the end of the BDM, Joss wanted us to know that Inara finally got it right; Mal's "Good answer!" I believe is rather significant, seen in that light. Essentially she tells Mal she'd rather stay with him/them. And Mal may be daft at times, but he definitely got THAT! :)

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