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December 18, 2014

Dollhouse

Can Summer Glau save Dollhouse?

by Mike Moody, posted Oct 13th 2009 2:06PM
dollhouse summer glauShe saved John Connor, but can she boost the ratings for another struggling Fox sci-fi show?

Former Terminator fembot Summer Glau joins Joss Wheodn's Dollhouse on Oct. 30 for a recurring stint as Bennett, a programmer who shares a past with Eliza Dushku's Echo. During last week's episode of Dollhouse, the network hyped Glau's upcoming appearance with a special promo promising, "In three weeks, Sumer Glau joins the cast of Dollhouse!" I could be wrong, but it seemed like Fox was banking on Glau's star power to get more people to watch the show. Sadly, I don't think that's gonna happen.

I love Summer Glau. I was a big fan of TSCC and Firefly, and I'm eagerly anticipating her appearance on Dollhouse. I'm sure Whedon has crafted an interesting character for Glau, and I'm sure she'll be part of a compelling arc that will fold nicely into the Dollhouse mythology. But I doubt she'll be able to attract a ton of new viewers.

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FOX says they will air all 13 episodes of Dollhouse

by Jason Hughes, posted Oct 13th 2009 11:10AM
DollhouseIt's not the most encouraging news about the long-term potential of the show, but at least Whedonites can rest assured that FOX will honor the entire 13-episode commitment they made to Dollhouse. Scheduling guru Preston Beckman said, "During [November] sweeps we might have to jack up the numbers a little [with other programming], but we plan on completing the order for this show."

Which means if they haven't already decided to yank the show for sweeps period, then they're about to. It doesn't bode well for the series at all, though it's still too early to say if the respectable DVR figures will help things at all. DVR usage is at an all time high, and Dollhouse leads DVR usage, increasing its demo ratings by a whopping 50% (still only to a 1.5).

It's a big deal but I still don't think networks know what to do with DVR numbers. Many of those viewers are skipping commercials, so it may not matter in that sense. But it's telling that the Friday shows are the most DVR'd. It's a sign that their fans want to watch these shows, just not on Friday night.

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Dollhouse: Belle Chose

by Jason Hughes, posted Oct 10th 2009 3:55AM
Dollhouse: Belle Chose
(S02E03) It looks like the production schedule had this one slated to be the second episode of the season, rather than the third. It was a little odd how much time was spent in showing Ballard getting used to the complete process in turning a Doll into an Active. I kept thinking, "He was fine with last week's mommy engagement?" Knowing that this was intended to be the first episode after he took on the role as her Handler makes more sense.

It also means FOX is screwing around with Whedon's intended schedule on his show ... again! I can't understand how network executives think narrative flow between episodes means nothing. Do they think that fans are so stupid we can't follow a thread between episodes, nor will we notice when things are out of whack?

This would probably have worked better as a second episode anyway, because it got a little more into the technology behind the Dollhouse, as well as how it can go wrong.

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Dollhouse needs your help

by Bob Sassone, posted Oct 8th 2009 1:28PM
Activate Dollhouse
This isn't a big surprise: fans have started a campaign to save FOX's Dollhouse.

Other campaigns have popped up on the web over the past few years to save shows. While most of them are unsuccessful, once in a while a network will actually listen. This happened to Jericho after fans of that show sent so many nuts to CBS that the network finally decided that producing another seven episodes of the show would be cheaper than having fans send even more nuts to them and having to get rid of them somehow.

[Watch episodes and clips of Dollhouse and other shows at SlashControl.]

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Dollhouse: Can Actives really earn their freedom?

by Mike Moody, posted Oct 6th 2009 3:05PM
dollhouse november topher foxSuppose you were the head of a real-life Dollhouse that wiped volunteers' personalities, downloaded new ones into their brains, and rented them out to the super rich and privileged. Would you let your Dolls walk away, no strings attached, after they've honored their contract?

Yeah, me neither.

The last episode of Joss Whedon's Dollhouse, "Instinct," featured the newly liberated November/Madeline (Miracle Laurie) returning to the Dollhouse to undergo a "diagnostic." According to Adelle, the procedure is necessary to make sure Topher's tech didn't permanently blow a fuse inside Madeline's pretty head. Madeline was understandably cautious when Adelle came to visit her and prod her into getting the check-up. "I have this irrational fear that if I say the wrong thing, men in suits are going to throw me in a black van and take me away," she said.

Can you blame her?

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Dollhouse: Instinct

by Jason Hughes, posted Oct 3rd 2009 12:55AM
Dollhoues: Instinct
(S02E02)
So, um, what happened? Dollhouse came back last week and posted its lowest ratings to date. It's a shame, because the show continues to find its footing. What was impressive this time was that the episode was compelling and dramatic, and it had virtually nothing to do with the overall story-arc for the series.

Just like some of the best episodes of The X-Files were "monster-of-the-week" installments, this "imprint-of-the-week" chapter was simply brilliant. It explored the full capabilities of the Dollhouse technology, where we got our first hint that Topher's genius can sometimes push him to doing things he shouldn't. At least not without testing. It's this character flaw that led to his failures in "Epitaph One."

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Eliza Dushku on Dollhouse, Epitaph One, and Echo's evolution

by Mike Moody, posted Sep 30th 2009 10:00AM
eliza dushku dollhouseIn last week's season premiere of Dollhouse, we learned that the usually empty-headed Echo is becoming self-aware and is now able to access memories from her many personality imprints.

This puts her in a very dangerous place, star Eliza Dushku told reporters during a conference call this week. While a self-aware Echo might be more fun and challenging for an actor to play than a "dumbed down Doll," Dushku reminded us that any sign of Echo's evolution in the Dollhouse might get her sent to "the attic," aka Doll hell.

The vulnerable Echo will be looking for allies this season, Dushku said. She and former FBI agent Paul Ballard (Tamoh Penikett) "may possibly be trying to bring down the Dollhouse from the inside," she teased. During the conference call, Dushku also talked about the unaired first season episode, "Epitaph One," working with Summer Glau, and she teased more origins and back stories for the show's other characters.

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Dollhouse: Vows (season premiere)

by Brad Trechak, posted Sep 25th 2009 10:00PM
Dollhouse(S02E01) For those who have seen the DVD-and-iTunes-only episode of Dollhouse ("Epitaph One") which deals with an apocalyptic future, we're not there yet. Instead, this episode (written and directed by Joss Whedon) deals with Paul Ballard using his connections to the Dollhouse to go after an arms dealer that he couldn't put away as a simple FBI agent.

We see the beginnings of the Boyd Langton/Doctor Saunders relationship hinted at in "Epitaph One," but once again, considering that Amy Acker has a limited appearance this season in order to go to Happy Town, she was the highlight of this episode. I honestly hope that show fails, so that Amy will be around this one more for next season. Is that wrong?

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Sneak Peek: the second season of Dollhouse

by Bob Sassone, posted Sep 23rd 2009 4:02PM
A lot of people thought that the phrase "second season of Dollhouse" wouldn't even be something we'd be saying at this point. It was assumed that FOX would be one of those sci-fi or action shows that FOX cancels quickly and we'd be writing Short-Lived Show posts about it.

I guess if this is the last season we could still write those posts, but until then, here's a trailer for season two, which starts Friday.

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There really is a Dollhouse in Japan

by Brad Trechak, posted Sep 23rd 2009 1:01PM
DollhouseYou can chalk this one up under the "stranger than fiction" category, but if/when the series Dollhouse is shown in Japan, they can use the subtitle "based on a true story". It seems that a similar organization exists there in which people hire other people to pose as spouses, partners, etc. to avoid certain social embarrassments. Granted, the whole "memory implant" plot device isn't actually used, but at least they're halfway there.

The organization is called Hagemashi Tai (translated to "I want to cheer you up"). I cannot help but wonder if Joss read an article somewhere about this phenomenon and loosely based his show on it.

On the other hand, isn't this a standard episode plot of every sitcom ever made, in which a character has to pretend to be another character? In America, I'm aware that you can hire actors as characters for parties but not to this level of organization. Truth truly is stranger than fiction.

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Some Dollhouse tidbits from Joss Whedon

by Brad Trechak, posted Sep 18th 2009 2:02PM
Joss WhedonI was lucky enough to participate in a conference call today with Dollhouse (and Buffy and Angel and Firefly and Dr. Horrible) mastermind Joss Whedon. While he was very good at giving vague answers to questions asked so as not to spoil the storylines for season two of the show, he did drop a few tidbits that certainly make me want to watch.

The most interesting of this is that Amy Acker, who plays Doctor Saunders a.k.a. Whiskey, is only contracted for three episodes this season (apparently she's committed to another show). I found that surprising considering her important role in the apocalyptic future of "Epitaph One," but I'm sure the writers have figured out a way around it. It was stated that the world of "Epitaph One" will be revisited later in this season.

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Reaper guy joins Dollhouse

by Bob Sassone, posted Sep 16th 2009 1:06PM
Ray WiseI'm kinda amazed that FOX's Dollhouse is coming back for another season. This isn't a commentary on how good or bad the show was, but didn't it just have the smell of a show that wasn't going to come back for a second go around? The ratings dropped, critics and fans were mixed on the quality, and they even released a first season DVD set with an extra episode. It just seemed like it would be one of those culty sci-fi shows that FOX cancels early. But the second season premieres on September 25.

Ray Wise, who played the Devil on The CW's short-lived but loved-by-many Reaper, is joining the cast of the FOX sci-fi drama.

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Gone Too Soon: Firefly

by Jason Hughes, posted Sep 14th 2009 11:02AM
Firefly
When I first started exploring this project, there were a few shows that I knew were going to be important to hit. This is the first of those. Firefly was Joss Whedon's sci-fi western series. The show mustered disappointing ratings in its short eleven-episode run on FOX.

Since then it's gone on to near mythic cult status. There was such an outcry of support from its loyalists, the Browncoats, over its cancellation that the producers made a feature film sequel. That movie, Serenity, answered a lot of questions about the future fate of the cast. Unfortunately, like the television series, it couldn't find quite enough people to show up and tune in to warrant a sequel. Nevertheless, the few morsels of Firefly we did get are enough to prove that this is one of the most innovative and enjoyable series ever to hit the airwaves.

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TV Squad Ten: Joss Whedon's big bads

by Mike Moody, posted Aug 31st 2009 11:05AM
spike dru buffy
Before pondering the meaning of identity on Dollhouse, Joss Whedon gave us some great shows featuring iconic heroes and some really nasty but unforgettable villains.

Unlike Dollhouse, most of Whedon's earlier shows featured a "big bad," a major villain who caused trouble throughout an entire season, or series, for the heroes and their friends. Luckily, Whedon's heroes always managed to outwit these evildoers, but they couldn't stop them from stealing scenes and making the Whedonverse a very, very dangerous place to live.

Let's take a look back at some of Whedon's best "big bads" that made life a living hell for Buffy, Angel and Captain Mal.

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Will Summer Glau play a villain on Dollhouse?

by Mike Moody, posted Aug 27th 2009 7:02PM
summer glau fox dollhouse tsccEarlier today, we told you about Summer Glau landing a recurring role on Joss Whedon's Dollhouse. Glau, of course, has worked with Mr. Whedon before on the much loved but short-lived Firefly and its film spinoff, Serenity.

This isn't the first time Whedon has cast actors he's worked with before in a new project; he does it all the time. But like Squad commenter "davem" pointed out, actors who return to the Whedonverese for a second go-round usually end up playing villains.

So does this mean Glau is destined to be the new big bad on Dollhouse?

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