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Serenity: The Shepherd's Tale

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{{DISPLAYTITLE:''{{PAGENAME}}''}}
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{{Title|''{{PAGENAME}}''}}
 
{{Titleicons|comic|real}}
 
{{Titleicons|comic|real}}
 
{{Comic
 
{{Comic
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|colorist=[[Dave Stewart]]
 
|colorist=[[Dave Stewart]]
 
|cover=[[Steve Morris]]
 
|cover=[[Steve Morris]]
|previous=''[[Serenity (film)|Serenity]]''
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|previous=
|next=''[[Serenity: Float Out|Float Out]]''}}
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[[File:DerrialBook ShepherdsTale Cover1.jpg|thumb|Promotional image]]
 
[[File:DerrialBook ShepherdsTale Cover1.jpg|thumb|Promotional image]]
 
'''''Serenity: The Shepherd's Tale''''' is a graphic novel published by comics publisher Dark Horse. It was released on November 3, [[2010]].<ref name="darkhorse" /> [[Ron Glass]] announced it at the 2007 [[w:c:browncoats:Browncoat Cruise|Browncoat Cruise]].<ref>http://www.serenitystuff.com/2007/12/12/ron-glass-announces-a-shepherds-tale-comic/</ref> The series focuses on Shepherd [[Derrial Book|Book]]'s previously unrevealed secret past.
 
'''''Serenity: The Shepherd's Tale''''' is a graphic novel published by comics publisher Dark Horse. It was released on November 3, [[2010]].<ref name="darkhorse" /> [[Ron Glass]] announced it at the 2007 [[w:c:browncoats:Browncoat Cruise|Browncoat Cruise]].<ref>http://www.serenitystuff.com/2007/12/12/ron-glass-announces-a-shepherds-tale-comic/</ref> The series focuses on Shepherd [[Derrial Book|Book]]'s previously unrevealed secret past.
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" . . . [I]f you look at your life as a chain of events, each responsible for the next and caused by the last, where does any story begin?"
 
" . . . [I]f you look at your life as a chain of events, each responsible for the next and caused by the last, where does any story begin?"
   
'''Part One''' begins at [[Haven]], during the events of the Serenity film ([[2518]]).
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'''Part One''' begins at [[Haven]], just before the events of the Serenity film ([[2518]]).
   
 
The colony residents ask Book when the Firefly crew will be returning, and one wonders how he met Captain Mal. A rumble overhead signals the arrival of a ship, and Book recognizes from the sound that it's not a commercial freighter, but a gunship. In fact, he knows exactly the make and model (A.V.-Sparrow, an alliance short-range gunship with a thick skin), as well as its weaknesses. He mans a gun turret and shoots it down, but he is struck by a bullet.
 
The colony residents ask Book when the Firefly crew will be returning, and one wonders how he met Captain Mal. A rumble overhead signals the arrival of a ship, and Book recognizes from the sound that it's not a commercial freighter, but a gunship. In fact, he knows exactly the make and model (A.V.-Sparrow, an alliance short-range gunship with a thick skin), as well as its weaknesses. He mans a gun turret and shoots it down, but he is struck by a bullet.
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'''Part Three: [[Southdown Abbey]], two years earlier. ([[2514]])''' Book is kneeling in prayer, just like on the ship. He asks for guidance to "follow the path of righteousness and never stumble from it." Book picks up his suitcase and rolling case.
 
'''Part Three: [[Southdown Abbey]], two years earlier. ([[2514]])''' Book is kneeling in prayer, just like on the ship. He asks for guidance to "follow the path of righteousness and never stumble from it." Book picks up his suitcase and rolling case.
   
He speaks with the Abbess about his decision to leave, saying that it was difficult but that the world shown on the Cortex is full of suffering; he sees in it a purpose prescribed by God. The Abbess comments that when he first arrived he was "quite lost" and that he has undergone incredible healing, and Book tells her it's time he returned to the world. He says he will leave the destination up to God, and he and the Abbess pray together one last time.
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He speaks with the Abbess about his decision to leave, saying that it was difficult but that the world shown on the Cortex is full of suffering; he sees in it a purpose prescribed by God. The Abbess comments that when he first arrived he was "quite lost" and that he has undergone incredible healing, and Book tells her it's time he returned to the world. He says he will leave the destination up to God, and he and the Abbess pray together one last time.
   
 
Later, he is wandering the shipyards of Persephone, when he runs into Kaylee (the events of the [[Serenity (episode)|television episode Serenity]]). Kaylee smiles, saying, "You're gonna come with us."
 
Later, he is wandering the shipyards of Persephone, when he runs into Kaylee (the events of the [[Serenity (episode)|television episode Serenity]]). Kaylee smiles, saying, "You're gonna come with us."
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He drains the bowl and staggers into the street, wandering until he encounters the neon glow of a cross on a church.
 
He drains the bowl and staggers into the street, wandering until he encounters the neon glow of a cross on a church.
   
'''Part Five: [[I.A.V. Cortez]], six years earlier.''' ([[2498]]) Book is an officer on an Alliance ship, overseeing some kind of disaster; fire is visible on all the ship screens. Book gives the order to retreat, or to lay down arms and surrender to the rebel forces, as they can negotiate for the lives of the three hundred soldiers.
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'''Part Five: [[I.A.V. Cortez]], six years earlier.''' ([[2498]]) Book is an officer on an Alliance ship, overseeing some kind of disaster; fire is visible on all the ship screens. Book gives the order to retreat, or to lay down arms and surrender to the rebel forces, as they can negotiate for the lives of the three hundred soldiers.
   
His commanding officer relieves him of duty, saying that the I.A.V. Alexander was destroyed along with its crew of four thousand soldiers, doctors, nurses and teachers, all because of an operation organized by Book. The operation was designed to end the war in one day by landing transports on six different planets.
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His commanding officer relieves him of duty, saying that the I.A.V. Alexander was destroyed along with its crew of four thousand soldiers, doctors, nurses and teachers, all because of an operation organized by Book. The operation was designed to end the war in one day by landing transports on six different planets.
   
 
He accuses him of doing it for personal glory, and says that there must be a mole since the ships had all been ambushed. The man calls it "the single greatest disaster in Alliance history." He rips off Book's insignia, discharging him and ordering him to be released into space in an escape vessel. The vessel lands on the surface of a planet and Book climbs out, wandering alone in a desert.
 
He accuses him of doing it for personal glory, and says that there must be a mole since the ships had all been ambushed. The man calls it "the single greatest disaster in Alliance history." He rips off Book's insignia, discharging him and ordering him to be released into space in an escape vessel. The vessel lands on the surface of a planet and Book climbs out, wandering alone in a desert.
   
'''Part Six: four years earlier.''' ([[2494]]) Book is interrogating a suspect, beating her until she reveals her name: Staff Sergeant [[Hope Claypool]]. He says they picked her up "outside the perimeter of their station on [[Dyton]]," over [[Greenleaf]].
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'''Part Six: four years earlier.''' ([[2494]]) Book is interrogating a suspect, beating her until she reveals her name: Staff Sergeant [[Hope Claypool]]. He says they picked her up "outside the perimeter of their station on [[Dyton]]," over [[Greenleaf]].
   
Two officers watch, discussing his past. They say he came up through a law-enforcement outfit on [[Jiangyin]], and a couple of years earlier had caught the eye of the officer corps. His rise since then had been "meteoric", and he was ambitious and driven. One of the officers wonders what, exactly, drives him, be it glory, material wealth or idealism. The other officer says he wants the war to end "like no one [he'd] ever met." He describes him as brilliant, resourceful, having a great strategic mind, and adds that he's "the cockiest damn cadet [he'd] ever encountered."
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Two officers watch, discussing his past. They say he came up through a law-enforcement outfit on [[Jiangyin]], and a couple of years earlier had caught the eye of the officer corps. His rise since then had been "meteoric", and he was ambitious and driven. One of the officers wonders what, exactly, drives him, be it glory, material wealth or idealism. The other officer says he wants the war to end "like know one [he'd] ever met." He describes him as brilliant, resourceful, having a great strategic mind, and adds that he's "the cockiest damn cadet [he'd] ever encountered."
   
 
'''Part Seven: four years earlier.''' ([[2490]]) Book is fighting in the street against several "purple bellies", quickly disabling them with his martial arts moves. He makes his way to a secret meeting of rebels, who are discussing the possibility of an upcoming war. The leaders suggest infiltrating the ranks of the Alliance with a mole before any conflict officially begins. The group disagrees and the people leave, with only Book remaining. He asks what the mole would do, and asks how they would communicate with the rebels since all transmissions to and from Alliance assets are monitored. They show him a video transmitter, "the latest in biorobotics."
 
'''Part Seven: four years earlier.''' ([[2490]]) Book is fighting in the street against several "purple bellies", quickly disabling them with his martial arts moves. He makes his way to a secret meeting of rebels, who are discussing the possibility of an upcoming war. The leaders suggest infiltrating the ranks of the Alliance with a mole before any conflict officially begins. The group disagrees and the people leave, with only Book remaining. He asks what the mole would do, and asks how they would communicate with the rebels since all transmissions to and from Alliance assets are monitored. They show him a video transmitter, "the latest in biorobotics."
   
Surgeons remove Book's eye and replace it with the camera, which connects to his ocular nerve so he can still see, while still transmitting a feed to a rebel receiving unit. For a new identity, he must take someone else's, and we see Book strangle a man who has just arrived on the planet and steal his identity card.
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Surgeons remove Book's eye and replace it with the camera, which connects to his ocular nerve so he can still see, while still transmitting a feed to a rebel receiving unit. For a new identity, he must take someone else's, and we see Book strangle a man who has just arrived on the planet and steal his identity card.
   
 
'''Part Eight: six years earlier.''' ([[2484]]) We see Book, known as Henry Evans at this stage of his life, running from the police after he and a friend mug a couple in an alley. Henry/Book grabs onto the underside of a car that is flying past as his friend is caught by the police. Later in a bar, a cop sits down next to Henry/Book just as his photo appears as an alert. The cop reaches for his gun, but Henry already has his out.
 
'''Part Eight: six years earlier.''' ([[2484]]) We see Book, known as Henry Evans at this stage of his life, running from the police after he and a friend mug a couple in an alley. Henry/Book grabs onto the underside of a car that is flying past as his friend is caught by the police. Later in a bar, a cop sits down next to Henry/Book just as his photo appears as an alert. The cop reaches for his gun, but Henry already has his out.
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His father suddenly attacks him, choking him and then punching him in the face. He picks himself up, packs a bag and leaves the apartment one last time.
 
His father suddenly attacks him, choking him and then punching him in the face. He picks himself up, packs a bag and leaves the apartment one last time.
   
''"You see, this life is a fight and if you sit still, someone will get the drop on you. They'll pin you down. I won't let it happen. I'll protect myself, take what I need, and keep moving. Because it's every man for himself. Get out of my way. This life is mine."''
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''"You see, this life is a fight and if you sit still, someone will get the drop on you. They'll pin you down. I won't let it happen. I'll protect myself, take what I need, an keep moving. Because it's every man for himself. Get out of my way. This life is mine."''
   
 
==Behind the scenes==
 
==Behind the scenes==
This series was confirmed in ''Serenity: Better Days'' #1 and was in the early development stages, with plans to debut before the end of the year 2008. The release was delayed, and Dark Horse announced the release date of November, [[2010]] and ''The Shepherd's Tale'' will be a hardcover graphic novel.<ref>http://www.comicbookresources.com/?id=25133&page=article</ref><ref name="Manning9">{{Cite news|url=http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=25133 |title=Allie and Samnee on "Serenity: The Shepherd's Tale" |last=Manning |first=Shaun |date=March 9, 2010 |publisher=Comic Book Resources |accessdate=March 24, 2010}}</ref><ref name="Manning11">{{Cite news|url=http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=25183 |title=Whedon tells "The Shepherd's Tale" |last=Manning |first=Shaun |date=March 11, 2010| publisher=Comic Book Resources |accessdate=March 24, 2010}}</ref> According to [[Scott Allie]], the three-year delay was because no appropriate author could be found to write the story from Whedon's outlines, until Joss brought his brother [[Zack Whedon|Zack]] in on the project in late 2009.<ref name="Manning9" />
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This series was confirmed in ''Serenity: Better Days'' #1 and was in the early development stages, with plans to debut before the end of the year 2008. The release was delayed, and Dark Horse announced the release date of November, [[2010]] and ''The Shepherd's Tale'' will be a hardcover graphic novel.<ref>http://www.comicbookresources.com/?id=25133&page=article</ref><ref name="Manning9">{{Cite news|url=http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=25133 |title=Allie and Samnee on "Serenity: The Shepherd's Tale" |last=Manning |first=Shaun |date=March 9, 2010 |publisher=Comic Book Resources |accessdate=March 24, 2010}}</ref><ref name="Manning11">{{Cite news|url=http://www.comicbookresources.com/?page=article&id=25183 |title=Whedon tells "The Shepherd's Tale" |last=Manning |first=Shaun |date=March 11, 2010| publisher=Comic Book Resources |accessdate=March 24, 2010}}</ref> According to [[Scott Allie]], the three-year delay was because no appropriate author could be found to write the story from Whedon's outlines, until Joss brought his brother [[Zack Whedon|Zack]] in on the project in late 2009.<ref name="Manning9" />
   
 
On November 30, 2010, [[Chris Samnee]] and [[Jed Whedon]] participated in a screening of [[Out of Gas]], a Q&A about the comic and a signing of the new book. At the event, Samnee said that he put Jayne in a flamingo shirt in honor of [[Shawna Trpcic]].
 
On November 30, 2010, [[Chris Samnee]] and [[Jed Whedon]] participated in a screening of [[Out of Gas]], a Q&A about the comic and a signing of the new book. At the event, Samnee said that he put Jayne in a flamingo shirt in honor of [[Shawna Trpcic]].
   
Jed Whedon listed sources of inspiration, including ESPN's documentary ''No Crossover: The Trial of Allen Iverson'' and the song ''Hast Thou Considered the Tetrapod?'' by The Mountain Goats.
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Jed Whedon listed sources of inspiration, including ESPN's documentary ''No Crossover: The Trial of Allen Iverson'' and the album ''Hast Thou Considered the Tetrapod?'' by The Mountain Goats.
   
 
He also described what he realized about the character of Book:
 
He also described what he realized about the character of Book:
 
 
 
   
 
<blockquote>". . . I landed on a few lines that reminded me of one of Book's early encounters with Kaylee, when she asks him why he doesn't care what their destination is, and he replies, "Because the journey is the worthier part."
 
<blockquote>". . . I landed on a few lines that reminded me of one of Book's early encounters with Kaylee, when she asks him why he doesn't care what their destination is, and he replies, "Because the journey is the worthier part."
 
   
 
It struck me that Book is defined through and by movement. It's one of the reasons he fits in so well with the merry band of nomads aboard ''Serenity''. It is a philosophy and a strategy. Keep moving.
 
It struck me that Book is defined through and by movement. It's one of the reasons he fits in so well with the merry band of nomads aboard ''Serenity''. It is a philosophy and a strategy. Keep moving.
   
As a young man Book mistakes movement for progress and runs away from things. He runs from abuse, imprisonment, and himself. He bounces around the 'Verse like a pinball. There isn't a tremendous amount of intent behind it beyond self-preservation. Hovering over a bowl of soup, there is a shift inside him, and his journey changes from one defined by what he is running from to one defined by what he is chasing: from self-preservation to self-discovery."
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As a young man Book mistakes movement for progress and runs away from things. He runs from abuse, imprisonment, and himself. He bounces around the 'Verse like a pinball. There isn't a tremendous amount of intent behind it beyond self-preservation. Hovering over a bowl of soup, there is a shift inside him, and his journey changes from one defined by what he is running from to one defined by what he is chasing: from self-preservation to self-discovery."</blockquote>
</blockquote>
 
   
 
==Notes and references==
 
==Notes and references==
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==External links==
 
==External links==
 
*[http://www.serenitystuff.com/2007/12/12/ron-glass-announces-a-shepherds-tale-comic/]
 
*[http://www.serenitystuff.com/2007/12/12/ron-glass-announces-a-shepherds-tale-comic/]
[[Category:Comics|Shepherd's Tale]]
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[[Category:Comics|3]]
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