Firefly is a science fiction series conceived by Joss Whedon and Tim Minear. The series ran for only one season on the Fox television network. Conceived as a sort of "space western", it attracted a strong cult following but did not achieve great ratings. Opinions of the series among science fiction fans are mixed.
Following its cancellation, the series became the number one best-selling DVD set on Amazon.com for months. This surge in popularity lead to the making of the sequel movie, Serenity.
Set in the 26th century, Firefly takes place in a complex (and highly extensive) system of planets, colonized by mankind after Earth became overcrowded and polluted. Some colonies did better than others and developed quickly, while others had a hard time developing beyond a pre-industrial level. This eventually led to a war between the more developed worlds and the less developed worlds desiring independence, a war that the more developed worlds won.
Firefly fans widely blame Fox network executives for the failure of the show. They placed it in a poor time slot, ran the episodes out of order (including running the pilot last), and frequently pre-empted the show for sports events. Some fans are convinced that one or more Fox execs were deliberately trying to kill the show.