Dr. Philbert Mathias was the doctor who headed the research project which resulted in River Tam's psychosis and increased abilities. He was very proud of his achievements and the importance it brought to him. Mathias was present when Simon Tam managed to free River from the medical center. Following questioning by the Operative about River's escape, the Operative killed Mathias for his failure, talking to him all the while.
Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]
Dr. Mathias was portrayed by Michael Hitchcock. The character was first mentioned in the R. Tam sessions by the Counsellor, and is seen but not named in the film Serenity, although he is named in the shooting script and novelization.