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I liked Dollhouse before episode six

dollhouse-castSebastian’s back Guest-Clacking for us again, after sharing his his thoughts about why Friday Night Lights should be renewed for two more seasons….

Hard to believe, I know. After the pilot, fans of Joss Whedon had to have that certain feeling of “meh.” How were we supposed to like this show with a heroine that did not have her own personality? And making things worse, what we saw of her before she joined the program was a bitchy little brat. There was nobody you could identify with, especially not Echo’s handlers who so clearly abused dozens of supposed volunteers for the project.

But how can this be a surprise? This is what it’s supposed to be! At least in the beginning, we have to encounter the dolls just like that. The cool moments in the first five episodes were those at the end when we saw Echo remember something — or better, that some of her programming did not get erased. A doll in itself can only look good, which Eliza Dushku clearly does, but you have to fill her with life on your own.

I for one enjoyed the second episode the most but honestly that isn’t what kept me watching. I know it might sound silly but I feel at home when I watch Dollhouse because of two things. One: the Dollhouse compound looks like Wolfram & Hart (the villainous organization on Angel). Two: Amy Acker.

Oh, how I missed Fred, and to see her in this surrounding after so many episodes of Angel I enjoyed — no, loved — I will return until the lights go out, especially because we now know that Acker’s character will get more into the spotlight later on in season one.

But let’s return to the premise of the show — dolls. You could say Whedon should have had Echo have her “total recall” earlier, because that’s what I think will happen in episode six tonight. I say we needed all this time for character development; not for Echo, but rather her surroundings. Without knowing the other protagonists and where they stand, Echo’s acting up would be meaningless because she has no personality. It will be interesting to see how Dr. Saunders, Topher, her programmer; Ballard, the agent; Boyd, her handler and even the other dolls react once Echo finally doesn’t “fall asleep” anymore but rather starts dreaming.

I’m psyched about tonight and I think what happened up until now was the best Joss Whedon could have made out of the idea (at least on a non-cable network).

I think this will turn out great and it’s a little bit sad that a creator with such an astonishing rap sheet even has to convince us in an interview of that.

Photo Credit: FOX

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4 Responses to “I liked Dollhouse before episode six”

March 20, 2009 at 6:21 PM

I am bored by the series as a whole, but must emphatically agree with you that every scene Amy Acker is in is worth watching. I wish her character was the principal focus, actually.

March 20, 2009 at 8:23 PM

I had no problem with the way the show started. More important for me was that it moved forward at a pace that kept me interested. So far, so good.

March 20, 2009 at 10:46 PM

I agree wholeheartedly. It is a refreshing change to see writing on this site that doesn’t just ditto the “common wisdom” that this show sucks. I am looking forward to the fleshing out of some of the stale characters (esp Topher).

But when it comes down to it, this show succeeds at the #1 thing a show should deliver… it leaves me wanting to come back for more. Since episode 3, this has been the show I’ve looked forward to most each week.

March 21, 2009 at 10:25 AM

“Since episode 3, this has been the show I’ve looked forward to most each week.”

Agreed. I’ve been really enjoying it so far, and Episode six has only increased that.

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