I'd forgotten that that Angie Hart (who sang "Blue" at the opening of "Conversations with Dead People" -- and apparently was in 2 other BtVS episodes*) plays the woman who sings at the funeral at the end of the episode.
*citations: IMDb, Wikipedia
Aww, Petaline shoots Burgess with Nandi's favorite gun :)
[Edit: Notes I forgot: Jayne totally gets dressed up to meet the whores! And Kaylee knows something's not right almost as soon as she and Wash step into the cargo bay. /edit]
I've been noticing visuals more in this rewatch than I did previously, and in that final scene between Mal and Inara... Inara is not only in shadow a bit but is perfectly made up, wheres Mal is in the light of the ship and smudges from all they've been doing are visible on his face. I really like this subtle demonstration of how much she constantly has herself under control, refuses to drop the Companion mask. (Yes, there are scenes like when they're all drinking around the table in "The Message" when she seems truly relaxed, but so often she hides behind her job -- or witty barbs -- to avoid getting close to
Actually, watching this time through with people who aren't necessarily predisposed to love everything about this show, I've been noticing how I love all the crew members so very much and how it's so disproportionate to what we actually see of them in canon -- or at least not what one gets from a superficial viewing; my love is not so much rooted in fanon but rather in deep thoughtful looks at canon (though grey canon -- director+actor commentaries, etc. -- probably plays into that discussion as well), but I think there's a touch of irrationality there as well (which plays into all love after all).
"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."P.S. Reading shooting scripts is really interesting. Remember the shadow puppets we see very briefly when we first arrive at the theatre to size up Burgess? The shooting script of this episode has an addendum with full narration for that scene:
A CIRCULAR SHADOW representing Earth-That-Was fills the frame.NARRATORSilhouetted shapes appear. SPACESHIPS. They radiate out from the shadow sphere, scatter in all directions. Leave it behind.
the Earth up. Barren, she had little left to offer them.>NARRATORThe ships are gone now. A wisp of SMOKE wafts off the sphere, creates a snake of shadow.
< Swollen of her, they left. And for the first time since the Great Burn that birthed her, she was alone. >NARRATORThe smoke INTENSIFIES, becomes shadowy FLAME.
< The Earth cried, and terrible were her tears. Acid and caustic, the spawn of the tribes' rape. They flowed a century. >NARRATORThe sphere SMOLDERS now, bits of it breaking up and disintegrating under the intense heat.
< The fire that finally came did so as a blessing. >