A Gorram Brief Guide To Firefly Swear Words

Firefly cast photo

Joss Whedon's Firefly came up with some interesting alternative cusses, so here's a quick guide to best swear words in The Verse. The basic concept of Firefly came from Alien: Resurrection, the fourth film in the famous sci-fi franchise. Joss Whedon wrote the script for that entry but ended up disowning the final product, feeling it had been largely miscast and failed to capture the tone of his screenplay. The movie also features a gang of space outlaws who pilot a ship called The Betty, with the crew played by actors like Ron Perlman, Michael Wincott, and Winona Ryder (Stranger Things).

Whedon would later recycle this idea for sci-fi series Firefly, which follows a crew of outlaws surviving on the fringes of space in a ship called Serenity. Firefly featured a fantastic ensemble, a convincing futuristic society, and some great dialogue. While the show quickly attracted an adoring fanbase, it was cancelled after one season. The deafening cries of fans asking for more and solid DVD sales led to Universal greenlighting movie spinoff Serenity in 2005. This movie explored River Tam's (Summer Glau, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles) backstory and the origin of the Reavers. The film ultimately underwhelmed at the box-office though Firefly has continued in comic and novel form.

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One of the benefits of a sci-fi series is that it gets to invent creative new swear words, like Red Dwarf's "smeg" or Battlestar Galactica's "frak." Joss Whedon is somebody who likes to get creative with his wordplay, which is why Firefly takes place in a future with some notable new cusses. The show is a mash-up of western and science fiction and is set in a multi-cultural future where Mandarin Chinese has become a second language.

Firefly The Train Job Episode

Easily Firefly's most famous swear word is "gorram," which is a mild version of goddamn; other variations include "goramit." Other futuristic cuss words include "ruttin'" and "humped," which are both variants on a particular swear word beginning with the letter F. The characters often resort to swearing in Chinese to get away with more spicy language, with "pigu" translating as ass, "gǒushǐ" meaning crap, while húndàn comes out as "a**hole." One particularly wordy Chinese swear "Da Shiong La Se La Ch'Wohn Tian" translates to "Explosive diarrhea of an elephant."

Even in the space of 14 episodes that are many more examples of creative swearing to be found in Firefly. Had the show stayed on air a little longer it would no doubt have gotten even more creative, but for fans of the show, it already offered some gorram good ones.

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