Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Dollhouse / Sarah Connor

Okay, so I have now sat through nine episodes of Dollhouse with good grace, trying to trust in the usually brilliant Joss Whedon. After all, he created the generally superb Buffy, the fun Angel (which actually managed to make the hitherto dull character of Angel likeable and played off David Boreanz's comic strengths, now used well in Bones), and the sublime Firefly. (Ah, Firefly and Serenity; I share xkcd's obsession with thee, even though I believe you were derivative of my beloved Farscape.) And it stars Faith my favourite Vampire Slayer and Helo (okay, so I try not to think about BSG too much since the appalling - hock, spit! - finale, but I'll always have a soft spot for Helo and Athena regardless of Ron Moore's tripe ending).

And yet here I am, nine episodes in, and Dollhouse shows no signs of... well, being any good. I hear Alan Tudyk is to appear in the last episodes of the season, so I'm holding on for that, but really, what I don't understand is this: how the hell did this get picked up for a second season by Fox while the excellent Sarah Connor Chronicles was cancelled? The first season of Sarah Connor walked all over Dollhouse with size five Terminator-ballerina boots, and more than earned my patience when I had to put up with a bit of a mediocre middle to the second season (more than pulling it back again for the end of the season). Dollhouse hasn't earned such patience; I'm merely giving it an extended chance because it comes after Firefly.

Does it get any better? It's difficult to care about "actives" who are essentially call girls, especially when all of the cast seem to be turning out to be actives. And yet an emotionless robot played by Summer Glau... Oy, Fox! Bring back TSCC!

And that is my Tuesday lament.


  1. Thank you! I was beginning to think it was just me, or maybe Whedon fans are so faithful, they'll ingest anything he has on offer.

    I too prefer Sarah Connor, despite all the trashing of it. Since I appeared to be the only fan, I figured that was why it was cancelled. It is way more exciting than Dollhouse, has more of an ongoing story line to follow (or is it just that I find it a more interesting one?), and the characters are more interesting, though it would be nice if there was some occasional joking, maybe a smile...

    Anyway, the original pilot and the un-aired episode 13 of Dollhouse have been posted online. Episode 13 is probably the most interesting one so far, yet it never got shown. Perhaps they are airing it next season, or, since it takes place in the future and tells us about where the Dollhouse goes from what we have seen so far, maybe they're saving it for the series finale.

    If you can't be bothered to watch the rest of Dollhouse, skip along to episode 13. It tells you most of what you need to know. I almost liked the series after that.

  2. You weren't the only fan, I love TSCC... So sad about losing that one.

    Also, Scrivener kicks ass. Amazing program, I'd pay twice as much for it.

  3. TSSC was so good for the first season, and I agree it got a little bogged down for a few episodes in season 2, but it came back strong! I've pretty much decided that any show I like will get canceled and leave me hanging (Veronica Mars, Kings...)

    PS, another Scrivener user here, kudos, and yes, bring on 2.0!

  4. I too was slightly bored by Dollhouse at first, but I really think it picked up in it's second season and then suffered from Rushed Ending Syndrome. However I think that it's safe to say that it chased the pigeon throughout unfortunately. Joss needed more time to feel it out and develop where he was going and then he locked himself in and of course Fox screwed with him just enough to throw the whole thing off kilter.

    That being said, while not the most entertaining, I think it was pretty and deep and had something important to say and I really liked it from a philosophical point of view, it really showed what faux-modernism could look like and use sci-fi as a metaphor in great ways.

    Basically the whole show was kind of uneven and focused more on a lacklustre plot than characters (Whedon's greatest strength).


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