Nathan Fillion Needs Someone To Play Nathan Fillion In Castle‘s Firefly Parody

Nathan Fillion Castle Firefly tribute episode meta Mal Reynolds Max Richards Gabriel WintersEver since Nathan Fillion joined ABC’s crime drama Castle, he’s been such a good sport about slipping in references to his 2002 sci-fi western Firefly. After all, it was playing Captain Malcolm Reynolds that made him into a beloved cult figure, which eventually translated into mainstream TV stardom. So in the past few years, we’ve seen Nathan’s character Rick Castle dress up in Mal’s old tight pants to be a “space cowboy” for Halloween, or he’ll look right at the camera when someone mentions “Serenity.” Not to mention when he was reunited with Jayne Cobb, a.k.a. Adam Baldwin, last season!

But you always got the sense that these Firefly Easter eggs were Nathan’s doing, that he bugged the writers to include them out of a sense of affection for still-loyal Browncoats. Then I found out about one of Castle‘s upcoming season 5 episodes, which could be the most meta Firefly joke ever. E!’s Kristin Dos Santos revealed in her daily Spoiler Chat roundup that Castle is looking to cast someone to play… Nathan Fillion, basically:

Gabriel Winters is described as an actor who quickly rose to fame playing Captain Max Richards on a hit sci-fi series. Of course, unlike Fillion, this leading man spiraled out of control after his show went off the air with booze and one-night stands.

OK, this is awesome. Not only is Castle lampooning what could have been the fate of their star, but they’re literally making a parody of Malcolm Reynolds. I don’t think Joss Whedon could’ve ever foreseen this when he dreamed up Firefly, and especially when the series got cancelled after only fourteen episodes. (Also, what great timing to learn this news, on the tenth anniversary of the series premiere!) As a geek, I’m just so delighted and touched that mainstream TV thinks Firefly influential enough to parody.

Castle 5×07 “The Final Frontier” also pokes fun at geekery in general: Castle, Beckett (Stana Katic), and the other police officers end up at a sci-fi fan convention called SuperNovaCon, where a young woman gets murdered. The victim and the other attendees are all fans of Nebula 9 (the Firefly parody), and Gabriel Winters could be one of the suspects.

For his part, Nathan — who often shares behind-the-scenes photos and videos with his fans — doesn’t seem to have commented on the casting yet. Who could they get? Unfortunately, a lot of Nathan’s doppelgangers are all probably too famous to do a cameo: Jeremy Renner and Jason Bateman immediately come to mind. So, ABC will probably go with some hunky unknown. Just as long as they find someone who can deliver lines like this with such panache:

Malcolm Reynolds gifs floral bonnet


.gif: hulk-widow on Tumblr

Share This Post:
    • Tiffany Fugère

      How about Jason Bateman, since they’re always getting confused for one another anyhow ? :)

      • Natalie Zutter

        I would totally support Bateman, but I wonder if he’s considered too famous to do it? He’d probably be down, but of course now he’s filming Arrested Development…

    • Dan

      I recommend Tim Guinee. He looks more like Nathan Fillion than Bateman or Renner, and he’s far less famous. He was recently on the new show Revolution, but I don’t think he’s a regular.

      • Natalie Zutter

        Whoa, good catch! Yeah, and he could work after he (SPOILEEEEEER) took a gunshot to the chest in the pilot.

      • grabbs

        nah, he was in a Castle episode recently, so no go

    • William Forbes

      Has to be John Barrowman

      • Natalie Zutter

        How have those two not made out/had an epic dance party yet?

    • SpenceJT

      William Mapother (who shares a similar “rugged” look) would be an inspired choice for Gabriel Winters!

    • Jeremías Magnaghi

      Nick Brendon, yo.

    • George

      I vote for Jon Hamm.

    • deckard70

      Ron Livingston! He has both the comedic chops and the looks. He’s
      hilarious. Plus I am still sad that his sci-fi show Defying Gravity got
      canceled by ABC.

    • David Fletcher Brunton

      Nolan North.

    • Cube1701

      It’s also worth mentioning that Star Trek star Jonathan Frakes is directing this episode.

      • Natalie Zutter

        I did see this in the original story, but figured Crushable’s audience may not be geeky enough to care. But! I’m glad you mentioned it.

    • lgb

      Get Nick Brendon. Not only is it another reunion moment (Since they worked together on Firefly) But Nick was originally offered the part of Mal so it adds another layer to the Meta joke… plus just imaging the Behind the Scenes Footage of Nick and Nathan, it’d be off the hook!

    • Simon Short

      Alan Tudyk

      • Natalie Zutter


        This is actually kinda genius.

    • janna

      I’ve been watching Castle for a while, but I don’t know a
      whole lot about TV so I guess I didn’t notice Nathan Fillion’s Firefly
      allusions. My coworkers at DISH and I all love Fillion’s acting, though, so I
      might have to check it out. I have the Blockbuster @Home service through DISH,
      so I can rent it anytime. If I don’t like it I’ll just exchange it at the
      nearest Blockbuster store and not have to wait for them to mail me another DVD.
      Whether I like Firefly or not, I think it’s awesome that Fillion is still
      alluding to his past series.

    • Pingback: The show called Castle and Firefly()