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Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
"Sometimes you just wanna duct tape her mouth and dump her in the hold for a month."
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November 07 2008

LA Times reports on new Dollhouse production delays. An "inside source" tells the paper about problems with the scripts for episodes six and seven.

Course for all we know, this could be someone spinning a line to help justify the new timeslot. Also for some ungodly reason, Fox have decided to make the new Dollhouse trailer inaccessible to those outside the USA.

Maybe Reilly should have listened to more than every other word.

"The network wants to tone things, and Joss is trying to figure out how to give them that and still do the show he wants to do."

Ya know? I'm so sorry that Joss and everyone have to do this in a fishbowl - however, since they are in that bowl, I hafta say what I'm able to see about the network ain't 'zackly inspiring me. I've been drinking all the "it's the new Fox" koolaid, but that's enough slack-cutting for now.

However, Joss makes a show, I'm there opening night, and wild horses - or irritating suits - won't stop me. 'Cause yes, he can.
I don't like Fox meddling with Joss' show. I'm so concerned.
Networks always meddle with shows (admittedly not always for the best), I don't see why Joss should be an exception.
Well, in the great scheme of Life and Whether It's Fair, I don't see why Joss should be an exception. We're all subject to the pains and plagues of this life, and meddling studio executives are surely one of the trials in this vale of tears.

However, I think it seems clear why his fans would devoutly wish it to be so. Doctor Horrible's Sing-Along Blog is evidence enough - if we needed more - that Joss can do just fine without a monkey on his shoulder.

Okay, I know that's not exactly the right phrase - I just wanted to use it for perversity's sake.
Because he is exceptional, Simon.

In the same way I blame former days'institutions or powerful persons for meddling with former days's dependant artists: Like, for example, Count Esterhazy treated Joseph Haydn, meddling with his compositions, such nearly destroying him as a artist.
So what's our color alert for now?
It concerns me that those same concerns might be reason that they decided to move Dollhouse to Friday, instead of Bones.

[ edited by Numfar PTB on 2008-11-07 11:01 ]
The 'inside source' is spot on in this case.
So what's our color alert for now?

I'm at gamma rays, as I said on the thread below. Kills you. Seems appropriate.
Whedon Alert Level: the cold, unending darkness of the grave. Hey, at least it's slimming.

Ah well, it's a matter of wait and see now I guess, beyond Yanks spreading the word as best they can and (obviously) every one of you US types with a Nielsen box watching it there's not much more to be done. Statistically it was always a long shot anyway cos a) it's a TV show (i.e. likely to be cancelled anyway) and b) it's a Whedon TV show (i.e. usually appealing to a smaller audience than major networks are happy with).
Chill dudes. Any show with this much development time is going to get f*cked around a bit. Most aren't made by a guy with a web site set up to link every news story about it. As a result, this all seems big and scary, but hopefully once it's on air we'll be away.
Okay, just saw the Friday night story. Less reasoned and calm than I was a few moments ago.
It sucks that Fox is being... well, Fox.

Selfishly, though, I hope the episode 7 delay somehow buys me time to find out how to submit myself for the 27 year old kind of naturey dude from the episode 7 casting notices that were leaked here.

It's a chicken and egg thing, though.... I'm planning on cutting my hair short and getting headshots done, but for a chance at a part on a Joss show, I'd get a headshot with my hippie hair! Unfortunately, before I have access to what calls are active, I have to get the headshot and look for an agent or pay for a membership to the casting sites.

Wow, what a self-involved post. Nevermind me, Joss! Hypnotize those executives to agree with you. I have it on good authority they like shiny objects. Maybe as a result of the memory wiping, you could just work in a shiny car that people see that drives into the background and blows up in every scene. Oh wait... budgetary concerns on that one. Maybe a Matchbox car?

Edit: After actually reading the article, episode 7 casting must be way in the past by now.

[ edited by Celluloid Novelist on 2008-11-07 13:43 ]
Realistically after the air date news it's not gonna air 7 episodes -- I don't even know why Fox still care.
DVDs? I actually hope they just take the pressure off and let people do their thing now, as I think it a) doesn't really matter now, frankly and b) gives it a chance at being, you know, good.
The Watcher has blogged about this here, and Alan Sepinwall here. Neither are very optimistic :-(
Disappoints, cuz I was just listening to that podcast from last week with Joss saying how much he likes the "Studio System" and how its a "Different buncha folks", and he sounds so upbeat.

Joss, I love ya, dude.. leave Fox in your talented dust.
James Poniewozik, the Time Magazine TV critic, is also not optimistic - blog post here.
This was wretched to read. Friday night? The account of script delays and cast/crew frustrations is from an unnamed "inside source" and on the face of it, unverifiable. But it seems not outlandish, folks, not at all. Trying to come up with some happy explanation for moving Dollhouse from Mondays before "24" to Friday seems....well, I'm too sad to say what it seems. God.

[ edited by phlebotinin on 2008-11-07 15:10 ]
Friday nights...I'll just think "X-Files" success and go about my merry way, whistling optimistically.
phlebotinin, the current shutdown thing is true - I found out about that last night. (Although I had nothing to do with this article).

FOX's handling of the moving of show to Friday night has been shameful from a PR point of view - this is not the way to announce something.
Oh well. I think this is turning into a case of "the rumors that cried wolf" for me. With every new rumor that tells me to worry, I find myself a little more unworried.
In the end, Joss will pull through. In Joss we Trust.
Or to quote Quotergal, "Yes we can."
You can trust in Joss, but if the network fails to promote a show because they don't like it, you end up with Firefly.
But Obama was supposed to change the world :(
I think he has more important things to be worrying about, in fairness.
Oh well. I think this is turning into a case of "the rumors that cried wolf" for me. With every new rumor that tells me to worry, I find myself a little more unworried.

Hmm, you know the end of "The Boy Who Cried Wolf", right ? ;)
I need to stop reading these forums for today. Everyone's being so pessimistic. That's getting more more upset than the news itself. I'm still highly excited for Dollhouse, whenever it premieres. I wish people could be a bit more positive that we're getting new Joss programming, however long it lasts.
Yes. The more I read the more I'm worried... and maybe I shouldn't.

I think we all need Joss to tell us what he thinks.
Unless what he thinks is that this is bad news, in which case it will just make us panic more ;)

[ edited by Rachelkachel on 2008-11-07 16:32 ]
Hmm, you know the end of "The Boy Who Cried Wolf", right ? ;)

Maybe that should be change to "The Boy Who Cried Fox." ;)

I'm a lot less freaked out than I was last night. The blogs I've read talking about how Fox could be worried about 24 makes sense. Making House its lead-in is a good way to protect one of the network's biggest shows. But they handled the announcement in a really ham handed way. Not being able to predict the fan's reaction or not caring really bothers me.
I will pay attention to this when the show airs. It is great that there is so much interest in Joss's latest project, but some of the fan base should focus their attention on other things until that happens. Hanging on every early critique or rumor and expanding on it in an echo chamber only compounds the negatives.

It reminds me of the leadup to Serenity. It was an excellent coda to the television series, but the hardcore browncoat marketing push may have driven off a lot of casual viewers. There has to be a balance between the push towards hardcore and casual fans. Maybe you do not have to limit one or the other, but you have to make sure that a project is geared to appeal to both.

Joss could reshoot every episode between now and the time the first show airs. I don't care. I want one or two big explosions, Eliza in leather pants, and eccentric dialogue. Sold.
"Unless what he thinks is that this is bad news, in which case it will just make us panic more ;)"

Yeah, but if he does, maybe he won't try to please Fox so much and do the show that he wants to do... even if I thought he could do both.

[ edited by Nico-Angel on 2008-11-07 16:35 ]
Hmm, you know the end of "The Boy Who Cried Wolf", right ? ;)

Everyone got to watch an awesome tv show? Oh wait, but then they get eaten by wolves. Damn.
Friday nights...I'll just think "X-Files" success and go about my merry way, whistling optimistically.

I don't want to get anyone down, but initially X-Files got horrible ratings and was just barely renewed.

Via the X-Files wikipedia entry:
The X-Files was picked up for a second season despite finishing 102nd out of the 118 shows in the U.S. Nielsen ratings

During its second season, The X Files finished 64th out of 141 shows, a marked improvement from the first season. The ratings were not spectacular, but the series had attracted enough fans to be classified as a "cult hit," particularly by Fox standards. Most importantly it made great gains among the 18-to-49 age demographic sought by advertisers.

In todays network environment, I doubt X-Files would have lasted a full season. Back then networks gave shows a lot more time to find their audiences. Unfortunately these days, they expect shows to be successful right out of the gate or they pull the plug. :(
Also, that was when Fox was a fledgling network and arguably more motivated to let a show grow.

... but then they get eaten by wolves.

Omelettes/eggs ;).
Production issues happen on pretty much any show. Doesn't everyone remember the unaired pilot of our beloved "Buffy the Vampire Slayer"? Or the re-tooling of many an episode of "Angel"? I'm staying optimistic about that. It's a new show and there are bound to be some conflicts at the beginning while everyone's trying to figure things out.

The Friday night timeslot paired with the production issues is a little more worrying. If FOX is trying to give "Sarah Connor Chronicles" and "Dollhouse" a chance to survive with minimal competition, that's great. That's what I'm hoping against hope for.

However, FOX is going to have to promote both shows in their Friday timeslots like crazy to get that to work. THAT is the most worrisome, because if FOX is trying to dump both shows, they'll put them on Friday nights, with little fanfare, to die.

As fans of Joss, we can't let that happen. It's simple. Don't panic about every little thing, and watch "Dollhouse" when it airs. If it sucks, that's one thing, but even a bad Joss-show episode is usually better than most stuff on TV.

Let's stay positive that he and Eliza have a show coming out at all, and watch it. Let's give it life if the network execs won't.

"Let's stay positive that he and Eliza have a show coming out at all, and watch it. Let's give it life if the network execs won't."

Thank you !
This is not good news. I really don't want to be pessimistic on this one, but as dreamlogic said, gamma rays seems like the appropriate alert "color" for now. I really believed in "the new Fox", but now it's déjà vu all over again.

Let's just hope that I'm wrong, and it all turns out like sugar and rainbows when February comes.
I tend to be of the belief that creative-type people can sometimes actually work better under limits and pressure like this. Being told, "No, you can't do that, find another way" can really get the creative juices flowing and result in something spectacular. It forces you to really get at the heart of what you're doing. That said, there's also probably a fine line between when it's helpful and when it becomes just frustrating and cumbersome. I hope we haven't crossed that line.
I never wondered that the day in wich a show is placed could be very important to his sucess, till some months ago whe I read the "Memoirs of William Shatner from Star Trek series", there he said that when they moved TOS to Friday nights, in its 3rd season, instead of the mondays, everybody knew that the show won't last couse their demographic's public for sci-fi will be out of home.
Could I panic now?
I very much hope that Dollhouse will flourish despite its Friday slot. With the amazing talent behind it, it's got a better chance (in a just world) than most shows. But the drumbeat that I've noted building on Whedonesque against those who express pessimism seems a little rich. There are real-world signs that things aren't going swimmingly. To point that out is not to commit a crime against puppies. It is to express an opinion that is not groundless, even if it sucks and is a downer.

What makes *me* see red rather than the pessimism (of which I am sadly a sometimes purveyor) is the unfortunate 24-7 entertainment "news" world we live in now. Every last bump and downturn and rumor is chronicled as it happens or before it happens or even when it doesn't happen. That must suck for Mutant Enemy. In the case of Dollhouse, a "there be problems here" narrative started to take murky shape pretty early on with reports of glitches that before would have stayed under the radar. This frequent chatter of "Dollhouse has a problem" can have a rebound effect on the actual production, I imagine. That sucks. But what we have is a world in which real information is out there, along with rumor and other crap. It's not in our control, damn it. And it's human nature for Whedonesquers to react, some with positivity and some with pessimism. So it goes.

Btw, thanks for confirming the inside source, gossi, despite it being not a happy tale.

[ edited by phlebotinin on 2008-11-07 18:34 ]
Same old story...not really telling us anything except MAYBE the show will air on Friday nights. Don't networks have the ability to change their schedule whenever they want for whatever reason they choose?

And if the show isn't up to Joss' standard, I would absolutely expect him to tell everyone to take a break while he figures it out. And personally, I think that's the best situation. What could be better than taking time to make it right? Mozart is the only artist I can think of that could just take pencil to paper and have it come out right the first time. And look where that got him, he's dead.

I don't trust Fox or the LA Times or any of the other "anonymous" sources...and fortunately, I don't have to trust them. I trust Joss.

(and by the way, adding to the conspiracy theories out there, the author's name, Maria Elena Fernandez, is an anagram for "alarmed fanzine ranee" which I take to mean, she's the queen of alarming fans!)
A very few posters aside, I think we've been remarkably sanguine up to now (despite all the news of production troubles etc.) precisely because most of us are aware that that's the normal course of events, things very rarely run totally smoothly in the real world.

But that's not to say that when the facts change we should just carry on regardless and the facts have changed - a timeslot previously associated with early cancellation has been given to 'Dollhouse'. In the absence of other evidence (e.g. another Fox press release outlining their cunning plan for Friday nights) I think a not entirely positive outlook is reasonable.

The point comes where you've seen it walk and heard it quack long enough that a tentative conclusion of 'duck' isn't entirely unwarranted.

ETR 're' cos of English and all its pesky rules.

[ edited by Saje on 2008-11-07 19:05 ]
I subscribe to the Saje school of thought. I am not as chipperly optimistic as I was before, since I do think the new news is bad, but I'm also not in full panic mode.
Just SHUT UP already! I can't stand the media. I'm totally freaking out.
[edited because a couple of posts above pretty much said the same thing, and somehow I missed it]

My optimistic contribution to this discussion is my hope that Dollhouse just does incredible numbers and then we're all in the clear. My fingers are cramped with crossing. Here's hoping.

[ edited by human_loser on 2008-11-07 19:20 ]
I am, generally speaking, with Saje and Sunfire.
Just to nit pick, but I don't think panic is the right word for anyone that isn't directly involved with the show *if* the show is being maneuvered by FOX to burn it off or kill it and has a job that is in danger because of that.
Concerned, pessimistic, baffled, maybe even angry, yes. Although, of all the things I am after reading the news, angry isn't one of them. Mostly baffled and confused. With a touch of, "well, crap" thrown in.
However, FOX might have a plan. (Not optimistic about that though.) But they might actually have a good reason for Friday. And even if they don't there is always a chance that Dollhouse is the little show that could and is the surprise hit of the mid season. I mean, hell, if the Red Sox can win a World Series... and the comparison is apt because although they had a history of not doing well, the actual team wasn't comprised of the same people each year. Just like although other shows traditionally go to Friday to die, this show isn't those other shows.
Or something.
Dammit, I had a point, but I think I lost it somewhere.
I am, generally speaking, a child at heart. OT? Oh well.

I'm still trying to be hopeful about this news.
At least, since I don't have cable, and therefore no BSG on my television, I'll actually have some scifi to watch on Friday nights.
There's no need to panic as we don't even know if we like the show anyway, let's face it.
I think that even if Fox does have a plan, they should at least outline it... they must've realized the reputation Fridays have, right? It's just disappointing because until now it felt like they'd been honest and friendly with the fans. Especially way back over the summer, with the "We can't imagine why they'd doubt us" or something, and a link to Firefly. That, to me, signaled change. This, less so.

But as time goes on, I become more accepting of the situation. Dollhouse fails? Okay. At least Joss has 11 other clipboards.

ETA proper grammar.

[ edited by Jobo on 2008-11-07 20:01 ]
There's no need to panic as we don't even know if we like the show anyway, let's face it.
Off course, ther is this huge chance that I won't like some Joss Whedon work.

ETA: What's proper Grammar Jobo? :)

[ edited by Brasilian Chaos Man on 2008-11-07 20:04 ]
There's no need to panic as we don't even know if we like the show anyway, let's face it.

gossi, it's Whedon. Of course we'll like it. I love everything the man does.
I get that television is a business and network executives have an obligation to make sure the network is financially successful. But if a creative mind has a good track record and multiple critical successes they should be given a little breathing room. I mean, at least give them a full season episodes and complete network support to see if their latest project has legs. Creators like Joss, J.J. Abrams, David Simon, and Bryan Fuller should have support like that. Movie studios are more than willing to give proven directors the benefit of the doubt with their latest projects (which usually cost a lot more than a season of television).

If I were a network exec (which in the real world I would suck at, so lets imagine a bizarro world for a second) I would give those with good track records two full seasons to gain an audience. I'd also give those with one critical success under their belts (Ronald D. Moore, Rob Thomas, Shawn Ryan, etc.) one full season of network support to find an audience. If a network's line-up consisted of mostly critically acclaimed programs from name creators, they'd develop a very positive reputation and the audience would be less likely to channel surf.

The networks are always trying to find the next big hit when these guys are the ones most likely to deliver on that.
When O' when will Joss sit down across the table from the HBO folks?! Or even Shotime?

Is Joss allergic to pay cable?

If so, there's always F/X, A&E, etc. It seems like one of these cable netlets should be tripping over themselves to get into business with Joss.
One of the fixed factors in Dollhouse was the network - it was Eliza that had the commitment from Fox, and she who was discussing a possible career direction with Joss - when he had a bathroom inspiration & came up with the Dollhouse notion for her show ---> and it all went from there. Joss hadn't originally planned to do a TV show at all at this time. (Goners. *sniff*)

Much as another network or station seems like a good idea now, it was never gonna be a factor in Dollhouse.
QG and her pestersome reality-based... reality.
I'm slightly worried that if this fails and it's FOX's fault (because Joss has seemed pretty accepting of the idea that the show might fail for other reasons--just not what people want at the moment, for example) Joss could give up TV completely. I don't know if he would, but he's been expanding a lot lately into the comics, movies, independent things. And I love those, but there is nothing in the world I hold more dearly than Joss TV.

Okay, maybe a slight exaggeration. But it's probably depressing how slight.
With apologies to any existing five-year Dollhouse story arc...

I suppose we should use Firefly itself as our gauge for determining whether Dollhouse is a success or not. Dushku fans should use Tru Calling as their gauge.

If Dollhouse produces more episodes than either of these two shows did, perhaps Fox can be believed when it says it intends to nurture their investment in the program. The Friday death slot is only deadly if Fox axes the show. If Fox lets the show grow on Friday nights for two or three seasons... well I'll happily make Dollhouse my Friday night ritual for 22 weeks out of the year. :)
We already know that Terminator was on the chopping block. However, it was cheaper to keep going with the show then develop a new show. So speculation has been high that when summer hits the show is gone.

Now we get the wonderful news that FOX is screwing a Whedon show AGAIN. Nice move FOX. Shows just don't last in that time slot. Fox always moves shows there that it has no intention of supporting long term. "Sending them to die" is the appropriate term.

Eliza might have a deal with FOX but that shouldn't preclude the show from being picked up on another network. Maybe they should start looking now? Fox can remain the distributor of the show a la Buffy.

If this is another "Firefly" I will vow never to watch FOX again.

[ edited by DarenG on 2008-11-07 20:46 ]
Of course we'll like it. I love everything the man does.

Yeah, even his poos are like little bacteria infested Whedon whippees.

(is this one of those "line" situations people keep telling me about ?)

One of the fixed factors in Dollhouse was the network - it was Eliza that had the commitment from Fox, and she who was discussing a possible career direction with Joss ...

Was that the network or the studio though ?
Has Joss commented about this new development.
I'm actually calming down. I was never at the PANIC! level, more like I was punched in the stomach, but now I feel this could work.
Just SHUT UP already! I can't stand the media. I'm totally freaking out.

Ignore the media, then. Focus instead on the puppies.
Aaaarghhh, that puppy at the top right is in totally the wrong timeslot ! What were they thinking ? Do they know nothing about successful cutesy wutesy snuggly wugglies ?
I hope the people who think Dollhouse is doomed still tune in to watch, because if the ratings are good enough, it might get moved to a better slot and it would have a better chance of staying on the air.

If we all freak out and spread that pessimism, many people are not going to want to watch because they're afraid of falling in love with the show and then losing it, like they did with Firefly or other shows that were canceled too soon, probably by Fox.

I ask you all this: do you wish you hadn't seen Firefly just because it was canceled? Think about that when you decide whether or not to watch Dollhouse based on these birth pangs. This show needs viewers, so I beg of you to support it and wait to make up your mind about how screwed up or canceled it may get.

In the words of Zoe, I'm not so afraid of losing something that I won't try havin' it. I hope you all feel the same way.
Well let me put it this way. This crisis is huge and can not be understated. I will not mince my words or beat around the bush so I will lay the facts out on the table as I see it with resorting to longwinded metaphors.

It's seems that Whedonesque is no longer the number one result for Whedon.
Frakking wikipedia. Don't worry, Simon. We'll get them at recess.

Edit: typoz.

[ edited by NYPinTA on 2008-11-07 22:20 ]
Who are these Wikipedia upstarts ? I say we stop paying for whatever service they offer forthwith.

Also, I am now addicted to watching puppies. Cheers for that Sunfire. Don't you know you can't just throw cute around like that without considering the consequences ?
Though we are number one for Joss Whedon. Not for Joss though, not even close.
In the words of Zoe, I'm not so afraid of losing something that I won't try havin' it. I hope you all feel the same way.

Trust Zoe to know what to say! I entirely agree, electricspacegirl.
Damn you Wikipedia!!!!
Rikardo: Of course we'll like it. I love everything the man does.

Saje: Yeah, even his poos are like little bacteria infested Whedon whippees.

That's just gross. And, for the record, I don't idolize Joss, I love his work, not him.
Puppies. *mesmerized.* Oh, gods, !puppies! Like !kittens! only more... puppier!

Maybe if we all stared at puppy-cams more often, it could end war.

Yeah, ESG - I'm a big fan of loving-while-we-can, too - 'cause it's really all we have, anyway. I understand how getting burnt can make folks fearful, but thishere whole life-on-earth trip is temporary anyway, so it just doesn't work to hole up and hide from potential hurt. Stuff's gonna be painful as well as joyful, but - it's the only game in town.

I'll watch Dollhouse, as I've said, no matter what or where or how. But I will also have to call 'em as I sees 'em - even if I've ended up seeing 'em all wrong.
I get Wikipedia first for "Joss Whedon" (in quotes), but WHEDONesque first for Joss Whedon (without quotes). Actually, I get here first for Whedon.
My sense of impending doom wouldn't keep me from watching Dollhouse, and I don't think anybody has said that.

What's going to keep me from watching is my impending year-long paid vacation abroad, starting the same time as the show.
... Actually, I get here first for Whedon.

That must be, on W'esque is second for whedon but first for joss whedon.

Maybe if we all stared at puppy-cams more often, it could end war.

The puppies are having a war right now ! I think it actually might encourage violence cos it makes it look cute.
That must be

Well, of course. We fought a revolution to not have to use your top-level domain.
I get Whedonesque second in the list after Wikipedia when searching just Whedon at
I don't know about you guys, but Friday night works out better for my family.


Because we don't watch TV the rest of the week. Honestly, there's nothing else on which has the quality and content we expect other than on Friday. We've been watching Sci-Fi channel to catch SG Atlantis and Sanctuary lately, and they are both Friday night. It's kind of become our family night.

It'd be nice to have Dollhouse as an addition for us old, tired geeks with families, those who don't go wild partying every Friday night (like you youngins' do).

[ edited by quantumac on 2008-11-07 22:54 ]
There are always people for whom any given night is the best. The issue is that -- whether perception or reality -- Friday night is seen as the graveyard, especially for genre shows.

The fact that you, or indeed me for that matter, will inevitably be home on Fridays to watch it doesn't change that. ;)
theonetruebix: that may be true, but the networks aren't wooing me to watch anything else they have. I consider all their other offerings kinda boringly mainstream.

I wonder how many other fans have the same opinion. Maybe not many? Maybe a lot? Dunno. I've always been kind of a "weird bird" when it comes to TV. I like the stuff which gets cancelled, and can't stand the stuff that doesn't (except for Joss' work, of course). :) quite rightly brings up Whedonesque first in a "Whedon" search.
You always misunderstand me on this issue, Simon. I'm just saying, please watch Dollhouse. And now I'm out of this conversation.

[ edited by electricspacegirl on 2008-11-07 23:26 ]
Simon wasn't responding to you, esg. He was making a funny about some wikipedia turf war.
I'm confused. Did someone say they wouldn't be watching Dollhouse? Mostly I've read various degrees of concern over the show's status. If there have been comments about not watching it, I totally missed those.
Husband told me this news this morning, but I am not well, went back to sleep again, then went to the doctor, got's me some biotics, went back to sleep and then remembered it when said husband returned from toil this evening.

Came straight here to see the comments. I have to say, that before Buffy, whilst being a fan of TV shows in general, I didn't know anything about production. Being UK based I know minus-nothing about how the American television is produced.

There is part of me that now wishes I was back there, in my pre-Whedon days.

Buffy's first episode was enough to make me want to watch it again, but it wasn't until the second season that I became totally hooked, with Innocence. I watched Angel off the back of Buffy and Firefly off the back of that, became a Whedon fan, picking up anything that he's had a hand in.

I really miss the days of being able to just stumble upon something in that way that I did with Buffy. Just pure joy and entertainment. It never entered my head that what I was watching could just disappear. The BBC just doesn't do that, so I suppose that's understandable. By the end of Buffy, I knew a differently, a knowledge of network changes, of Nielsen ratings, of 18-35 demographics.

I think I need a mind-wipe.

I'm not really sure what I'm trying to convey here - but I will obviously be watching Dollhouse when it appears. I'm not expecting it to be brilliant on the first episode, in fact, I'm not expecting it to start to shine until the third episode or so. I'm not sure that anything will ever come close to Buffy (is that wrong of me) again. I suppose it's sort of like Obama, I've an inbuilt high expectation. But to be sure, nothing will be as good as Buffy if it doesn't get a longer run than one season.

It's the curse of being a fan I suppose, ups and downs. That first up being the one that makes you stick with something and normally the one up that that the most emotional resonance...and yes, I am totally rambling now.

Just one thing - does anything think that the Nielsen rating system will change at some point? It seems totally out of date to me. Not only does it seem to be not a true representation of what people are watching as it's not the whole population, the way people watch TV now is totally different, which makes it even more unrepresentative.

Back to Dollhouse for a moment - I will wait to watch the show and try as hard as I can to shut out all of this noise (from critics and "insiders") and my own expectations. I like to form my own opinion.
I'm cool with the Friday night thingy. The reason I didn't watch Firefly when it came out is because it conflicted with Farscape. This time, no conflicts, and I get to go from Dollhouse to BSG. Sounds delightfully tense to a geek like myself.

And who knows, it's three months away. They'll probably change things a few more times before then.
Puppies, wikipedia, turf, is everything in the world at war ?

Did someone say they wouldn't be watching Dollhouse?

I think someone may have i.e. I literally recall reading one post that said it wasn't worth it (but I can't find it now so maybe not). Clearly we're not going to not watch and we're not going to stop (nicely) spreading the word (and by 'we' I mean 'you' cos i'm not really in a position to affect the ratings one way or the other ;).

But apparently because Whedonesque can be read by journalists etc. we're all meant to look on the bright side of life, put a brave face on it, keep the British end up (or whichever end's appropriate for you) and generally post only shiny happy comments so that the rest of the world doesn't get the wrong (or possibly, y'know, right) idea.
Saje, one person did indeed post that they just weren't gonna bother watching the show anymore. That is odd thinking, but whatever, they said it.

As for the whole Friday being convenient thing, well...I like to go to the movies on Fridays, but I have a feeling I'll like staying in to see Dollhouse even better. I can watch Dollhouse, then BSG, and then do my online radio show. So for me, it's convenient, but then again, for me any night would be convenient as I am a total nerd and without a job.
bubblecat, nowadays the networks do factor in same-day TIVO/DVR/etc, but I think I've read somewhere that they've not yet figured out a decent formula to factor in off-day watching.

As far as not watching, I know a couple of people who never watch first-run shows unless they're guaranteed to make it to season #2 -- they just wait for the DVD and if there's no DVD it wasn't that good anyway. They use the reasoning that since they're not Nielsen people it doesn't matter to the ratings.
cabri, are any new shows given the guarantee of a second season? Because by your friends' logic, I don't think they'd be watching any new shows, ever.
Hehe, I keep pointing that out but that doesn't phase them -- they just watch a lot of Law & Order and CSI and such. ;)
I heard a few people say they wouldn't vote Tuesday because they didn't want to be on the losing side. The human mind is a fascinating place.
That's up there with "I'm not going to the Doctor's in case he tells me i'm ill".

Nowt as queer as folk, as they say.
My grandmother actually does that, Saje. And then when she does go the doctor, she believes the opposite of whatever he's just said.
Didn't we already go through this crap a while back? I seem to recall the middle scripts being the focus of 'problems' as reported a few weeks ago, way before The Joss gave us an update on things himself and dispelled any notion that DH was in any trouble.
The production was shut down after script two I think, then three really came together with everyone being very happy about it and now 7 seems to have issues.

My grandmother actually does that, Saje.

Mine was pretty similar UpC, she was deeply suspicious of doctors in general. Must be a grandmother thing ;).
I'm not sure if that one guy you were talking about was me .... but if so I only said I'm vaguely considering waiting for the DVD because I live in Australia and my ratings don't count
I'm not sure if that one guy you were talking about was me .... but if so I only said I'm vaguely considering waiting for the DVD because I live in Australia and my ratings don't count

Since in Australia, so far as I recall, it's going straight to cable (which is far less common here than in the US), I wouldn't be surprised if that's what a lot of people here are going to do.
Well, normally I'd watch it on the internet. And that's probably still what I'll end up doing

Good to see fellow Australians here ;)
I think the fact that it was going straight to cable in Australia should have sent alarm bells ringing. I mean what promising US show goes straight to cable in Australia? Generally Australian scheduling follows US scheduling reasonably closely. I mean, if it was going straight to cable it wasn't even considered viable for a deathslot on commercial Australian television. To me that says Fox have never had any hope for this show, not even for pretend.
I have no doubt as to the accuracy of this source, but I really hope that the mood on the set is more upbeat than it is here in the black.

Bad initial press does not necessarily have to mean the kiss of death- remember the kerfuffle about 'The Office'? '30 Rock'? Hell, I'm reaching, but even 'Titanic' was set to tank, and went on to become the No 1 box office draw, ever.

Joss just can't win- if he stays home to work on bettering the scripts, he gets the 'Where the hell is Joss?' deal. Yet, if he was swanning around the set, people would be asking why he wasn't at home, writing.

Perhaps we need to stop over-analyzing every info source, chuck away the WAM's and spend our time looking at pretty pics of the set and anticipating the show, instead of freaking out every time we hear some news.

Now, everyone take a deep breath and de-Salem-ize yourself.

ETA Vanessa-A, I have Austar and don't agree with your interpretation. There are plenty of successful US shows that go straight to Foxtel/Austar in Australia- Dexter, Gossip Girl, The Daily Show, Entourage among them. I'm actually glad Dollhouse went to cable rather than being relegated to some junkyard spot on FTA.

[ edited by missb on 2008-11-08 03:44 ]
I think it going straight to cable in Australia was because of the whole "remote-free TV" thing as much as anything -- Aussie networks would have found anything that cuts out their ads a pain. (Fringe is airing at the moment, but on channel 9, while Dollhouse would have been on channel 10.)
In defense of the grandmas, I have noticed that people who go to the doctor a lot seem to be sick more often. :)
missb - All those tv shows you mentioned are cable shows in the US (with the exception of Gossip Girl) which is why they went straight to cable in Australia. Fringe isn't a cable show, it's Fox (which is network TV) and that's why it went straight to network TV in Australia. I'm not saying whether Dollhouse going straight to cable is good or bad for the show, I'm just saying it's somewhat telling (or at the very least unusual)for an anticipated US non-cable show to go straight to cable in Australia.

ETA: spelling

[ edited by Vanessa_A on 2008-11-08 04:06 ]
Thanks Vanessa_A (my sister's name, btw, do I know you?!)- I was under the impression Dollhouse was going to cable as it's something of a 'genre' show and frankly, cable were willing to pay more than the networks. (Who after being slapped in the face by poor ratings for 'Heroes', 'Ugly Betty' and even 'Fringe', are getting a little wary about pre-ordering US shows. I hope that actually leads to more home-grown production!)

See, I'm not too sure how anticipated 'Dollhouse' is amongst the general public here. Of course, you have your solid core of Whedon fans, but speaking to Joe the plumber (he lives here, too!), it's not high on the radar. Which may be a good thing, as they haven't been exposed to all the panic going on!
I remember when Beauty and the Beast was canceled and I think that's when I got jaded about loving a television show too much. Ron Perlman said of the cancellation (and of the studio execs) something like, "They might as well have been selling fashion wear and cereal" (not the show itself). Well, that's exactly why studios produce shows, to make revenue off of advertising. It's amazing anything resembling good art gets made at all, or again, Buffy and Angel lasting as many seasons as they did.

I'll be sad for Joss & Co. if this doesn't work out, but it is what it is, and I'll watch with interest whatever of the show we get. Without risk, no one ever moves forward.
Long before I'd ever heard of Dollhouse (probably before I ever watched Buffy) I came to the conclusion that Fox likes commissioning science fiction series (Dark Angel, Harsh Realm, Brisco County for example) and then dumping them on Friday nights to die.

I'd like to think that's not the case here, but I've long ago used up my Friday night optimism.
missb - No, you don't know me, I'd have loved to have known fellow Whedon fans whilst in Sydney, though!
By anticipated, I meant anticipated by Fox themselves.
Oh, I haven't said anything about the panic allegedly working itself up like a poisonous snake dead serious through toilet pipes and into the bloodstream of the Fox executives and media. Or maybe I decided it would be better to give that a miss, as more absurd than I find funny.

I think the single most important thing to keep in mind is that they don't give a rat's ass about us, unless we suddenly become major stockholders. Maybe not even then.
So... we should all buy stock in FOX? Hmmm. *rubs hands together formulating a Plaaan* Coup by Fandom? Awesome.
If only. Do you have a spare billion?
NYPintTA, Unless the hands you rub belongs to a Murdoch you probably should forget that plan :)

I read somewhere that Fringe had been cancelled in Australia, was that not true ?
I know that they had to move the timeslot in Sweden due to limited interest and the fact that people around here already have seen the X-Files.
I'm not sure if that one guy you were talking about was me ...

Nope Let Down, the post I remember (only not well enough to find it again, or maybe it's been edited) didn't mention DVDs, it was just talking about not watching cos the show's as good as cancelled.

Perhaps we need to stop over-analyzing every info source, chuck away the WAM's and spend our time looking at pretty pics of the set and anticipating the show, instead of freaking out every time we hear some news.

Here's the thing missb: we (on here at least) haven't been. This idea that every time something comes down the pike we absolutely freak out with a stream of "OMG, Dollhouse is dead !"s just isn't true, it's becoming myth partly because of the number of people repeating it and partly because of all the people telling everyone not to panic over the last few months (when in fact the number of people actually doing so was vanishingly small).

We've been over-analysing of course but that's pretty much what we do on here, right ? S'why Doctor Horrible generated maybe 2000+ posts by itself.
I could maybe buy into the whole Friday is a less competitive market where the show can find a place to thrive argument if I observe the advertising push for Dollhouse that I saw for say Drive last year. I would expect to see ads for the show during Bones, TSCC, and any other time I happen to watch Fox during the runup to Feb. 13th. Before Drive premiered, Fox inundated the airwaves during all their biggest shows with ads. If they are still truly behind the show, we should see this with Dollhouse. If we don't, I think we can assume that they have lost faith (no pun intended) in the show and are pulling another Firefly.
I had a caller on my online radio show. He said that he didn't want to watch Dollhouse because it got dumped on Fridays. I told him the same thing happened to Firefly, and of course look at how great that turned out. He said that was true. I have no idea if I have changed his mind, but I can only hope.

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