Why "Dollhouse" Is Beginning To Bug Me

BlogHer Original Post

I know I'm risking Joss Whedon fans busting down my door and demanding my "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" lifetime membership card back, but I gotta tell you, "Dollhouse" is beginning to bug me.  Remember how when the show premiered last year, I wrote in my review, "Joss is an amazing talent so I'll give "Dollhouse" more time."?  Well Joss, honey?  Time is just about up.

We all know about "Dollhouse," Joss Whedon's latest TV project on Fox which got renewed at the end of last season pretty much on Whedon's name alone.  We know it stars "Buffy" alum Eliza Dushku and "Battlestar Galactica" alum, Tahmoh Penikett and is about a place called the Dollhouse that imprints people with custom personalities so they can be hired out to wealthy customers.

Last season ended with the show seemingly finding it's stride and promising what I thought was a more interesting direction.

The second season premiere was supposed to be a new beginning.  A reward to those of us who stuck with the show and cheered it on.  It was supposed to entertain and enlighten.  It was supposed to not make us regret giving up an hour to watch it.

It didn't do any of those things, but it did bug the heck out of me.  When we're outside the Dollhouse, I'm confused.  When we're inside the Dollhouse, I'm bored.

***Spoiler Alert***

Out of the Dollhouse, we've got Echo (Eliza Dushku) marrying a shadowy businessman, Martin Klar (guest star Jamie Bamber).  She thinks she's undercover for the FBI and working with ex-agent Paul Ballard (Tahmoh Penikett), but by the time all her former roles start crowding in on her, jeapordizing her mission, I'm more confused than she is.

What's Paul Ballard doing again?  Why isn't he trying to take down the Dollhouse anymore?

Inside the Dollhouse, all those Actives roaming around with their blank stares and childlike questions have gotten really old.  Bring back crazy psycho Active Alpha and jazz up the place!

In other news, Whisky (Amy Acker) hates Topher (Fran Kranz) 'cause he fried her little Active brain and made her into a doctor.  Pfffft! Who cares?  She should really hate Topher because he's a character who's worn out his welcome.

Adelle DeWitt (Olivia Williams) and her prissy accent and perfectly creased skirts--what's she doing again?  I know Ballard is a frenemy but why is she working with him again?

I guess what I'm trying to say is though there were some interesting scenes, the plotting was all over the map and I have no clue where the show is supposed to be going.  That's too bad too, because at the end of last season, I thought I did.

The best thing about the episode was seeing "Battlestar Galactica" alum Jamie Bamber hanging out with Penikett, and another "Buffy" alum, Alexis Denisof in a cameo as a politician.  Coming up in future episodes will be Michael Hogan, also of "BSG," and Summer Glau of the now defunct, "Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chornicles."  Joss is pulling out all the sci-fi casting stops, but he'd do better to boost the plots and re-think some of his characters.


Related Links:

Welcome to the Dollhouse, My Interview with Joss Whedon

Diversity in the Dollhouse Will Take More Than a "Miracle"

A look at the "Dollhouse" premiere at the blog, This Ain't Livin'

Classic Maiden's thoughts on the "Dollhouse" premiere


Megan Smith is the BlogHer Contributing Editor covering Television/Online Video.     Her other blogs are Megan's Minute, quirky commentary around the clock and Meg's Rad Reviews


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