March 21st, 2010

Guest Editorial: Serenity Lands

After a wait of almost three years, my Big Damn Replica arrived this week.

It was torture because I was out of town on business and had to wait a few days before I could break into that shipping crate. When I finally got home, I felt like a kid on Christmas morning as I meticulously opened the outer box, removed the lid of the “apple crate” and carefully removed layer after layer of padding waiting for that “OMG” moment.

My biggest concern once I received my shipping verification was the handling habits of UPS.  But my fears were quickly put to rest when I saw how securely protected Serenity was, and that she survived the trip to STL perfectly and without damage.  As I worked my way through those layers of foam, there were several surprises along the way.  The original order form from from the QMx website, a checklist from my Concierge phone call with what looked like approval initials from Andy Gore,  the ID plaque with Nathan Fillion’s autograph, Shuttle #2 carefully protected within it’s own pocket in the packing foam, the very cool light effect remote control and then the reactor vents and their assembly instructions.

A couple more layers of foam and protective wrapping, and there it was: My OMG moment. Serenity herself. For the first time in solid form, insanely detailed, and huge.

The size of the replica took me by surprise. We’ve all seen pictures on line and even Nathan holding her in his hands and gracing her with a kiss. But until she was right there in front of me, I just didn’t realize how how big she was. OK, hold your breath, CAREFUL….. reach in and bring her up. Not only is she big, but heavy. This thing has some real beef to her.  All in all, it took almost an hour to get her unpacked, mounted on the stand and assembled.

Now, after three years of waiting, there she is, right in front of me. To examine and explore every small detail. To find things that cannot be seen on screen like the underside of the engines, or the complexity of the reactor section, and the amount of detail in the shuttle. And I don’t know how QMx did it, but the paint makes Serenity look like metal, with individual panels painted slightly different shades and colors. And the different layers of the metallic blue on the cargo section that catches the light differently as you view from her from one side or the other.

As much a part of the ship herself, the light effects really bring her to life. The wireless remote allows you to control the different effects. A master power button activates the interior lights, running and spot lights.  There are then separate buttons to activate the engine and grav rotor, reactor and hard burn, and finally the strobe lights. Each of these effects can be turned on or off as you like and your selection is saved for the next time you turn on the main power. After 15 minutes, all lights turn off so you don’t walk off and leave them on for hours.

OK, it took me a few days to examine my Serenity – The Big Damn Replica and get my thoughts written down. The next thing for you to do is wait for your BDR to arrive and let everyone know what you think. My final thoughts are that this is the first purchase of a high end collectable and I am extremely satisfied with my purchase. After finally seeing Serenity in person, I feel that the price is completely justified.

In closing, I’d like to thank QMx for all of their hard work pulling together such a talented team to bring us this outstanding collectible. The talented Wolvster for his incredible sculpts that brought Serenity to life. And finally Andy Gore and Jessica Marschall for putting up with my many emails, posts and questions about delivery dates.

Thanks for reading and if you’d like, post your comments to me on

– Jim In St. Louis


15 Responses to “Guest Editorial: Serenity Lands”

  1. Lindsay says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this with us. Reading your description made me feel like I was the one receiving it; I felt the anticipation, the excitement and the breathless moment when the lid was taken off. Thank you for letting us share your moment. Enjoy Serenity for all of us!!

  2. shannon says:

    Illusions of paint unleashes the imagination.. everyone should have one of these remarkable replicas they are just stunning ..

  3. Jim in St. Louis says:

    Thanks Lindsay! That’s exactly what I felt like. My heart was racing as I got closer to the big reveal. I’ve also posted a rather poor quality youtube video of the light effects.


  4. It’s so beautiful it almost makes me cry. I have massive jealousy that you have one! And I’m happy for you

  5. Therese says:

    Jim, thank you for posting your unpacking photos, and the narrative of what it was like to delve into the crate. I can hardly wait for mine to arrive later this year. You have given me a very good idea of what to expect! She is stunning! You have also given me a great idea for my display area, and that is placing a mirror behind her. She is going to share space, or rather other models are going to share space with her, and a mirror will be a great way to see more of her without being handled.

  6. Jim in St. Louis says:

    In my review above, I carelessly neglected to mention one very important detail. The beautiful artwork so graciously provided by Jason Palmer. Jason did an incredible job capturing Capt. Malcolm Reynolds and our girl Serenity. This is a limited edition print of 1000 and the only way to get one is to buy a BDR. My print will definitely be framed and proudly displayed along side Serenity, right where it belongs.

    Thanks Jason for your contribution to this incredible collectible!


  7. RobinInSeoul says:

    Thanks for sharing your purdy girl with us! She sure is shiny! And, yes, I shed a tear, too. :D

  8. Yama86 says:

    Hey Jim thanks for sharing the experience and taking all the great pictures and video. My wife and I are currently waiting for our BDR but we have a few months left. I really enjoyed reading your chronicle of the “BDR Unpacking”. Great stuff!!!

  9. Wolvster says:

    Wow, GREAT to see a review of the BDR !

    I’m so happy that these are getting into the hands
    of the fans that love them..

    Also, gotta’ LOVE the last pic..

    So, did our girl pass ” inspection ”
    to your houses final authority ?

  10. Stephen Morton says:

    Glad I’m not the only one to get a bit emotional when I first saw the pics. :-)
    ‘Grats to Jim for sharing.:-)

  11. Jim in St. Louis says:

    Thanks Everyone! I knew Serenity’s were shipping and it was driving me nuts not hearing reactions. I just had to post my thoughts and pics of the experience as soon as possible. Andy did a great job getting them posted right away.

    Wolvster, my dog is mesmerized by Serenity when I turn the lights on. I think it is the Grav Rotor. She is a true Browncoat!


  12. Atom says:

    Great, now where is mine? ;)

  13. john vaughan says:

    I’m truly happy for ya Bro.

  14. DanY says:

    Looks fantastic. No 30 of 1000?

    Hey I’m No 27, where’s my Serenity?
    I think they forgot about me.

  15. Dan says:

    So how does the sequencing work, 30 went out first? Just wondering i am #21 :-)