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"The boot, the bat, and the bastinada."
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January 15 2009

Dollhouse 'American Idol' TV spot. 29 days until a new Joss Whedon TV series, folks.

Mmm, Crest Whitestrips.
Joe Swedon's Mannequin Apartment.

So yeah, this basically has to be made now.
no question whether they have adapted to more action, less character :(. Well if it keeps the show long enough on screem to blossom, I won't argue
Only 29 days for the lucky US folk. I wonder how long until it spreads its magnificent tentacles out to ensnare the rest of us?
Finally about time "Dollhouse" received some promotional air time. Isn't Eliza as lovely as ever?!
"Actions have consequences."

"What if they didn't?"

I love that. I'm a little ambivalent about the rest of it.
Ok, I missed the first hour tonight because I was driving home from work, and Little Bit insisted on getting a full tank, even though it was below zero out, but I didn't see any ads during the second hour.

Was this aired, or is it going to? I'm all confused!

I wanna get squee-y about a new show!
This was aired in the second hour.
I didn't see it!


I was watching the whole...oh...wait. I did go to the bathroom. Damn bladder!
*throws a child-like tantrum* I don't wanna wait anymore!

I love the TV spot...
This is a good tv spot, sexy and full of action... which I know is not what the show is about, but I think it will bring a larger audience.
Good ad. About time!
This commercial, with the sexy and the action, makes me think they're doing the right thing -- both in how they're marketing it, and also the changes they've made. Five or six episodes of a sort of procedural approach of Eliza out on jobs, doing the different things they promise -- "saint", "sinner", "lover", "fighter", "killer" is *exactly* what the non-Joss audience will need to want to see it and to keep coming back. Once they get settled, THEN bring on the Joss of it with the deep mythology.

It's the same thing I thought about the "Twilight" movie -- wouldn't have had a chance of making it's money back if there wasn't a reason for guys to enthusiastically participate in it as a date movie or just go see it as a possible action movie. And behold, the trailers, full of fighting and things.

EDIT: This commercial aired for 28 million people. That's exactly what they needed to show those guys. Really, all their trying to do is make sure than 1 out of 4 of them watch the dang show for that first month, enough to get hooked. 1 out of 4 of those people and "Dollhouse" is a hit on Fridays.

[ edited by KingofCretins on 2009-01-15 13:20 ]
Well, ain't that fun:

Fox admits airing Dollhouse spot on American Idol was "an accident", vow to carry on campaign of no publicity for the show.

That's witty, but not all that helpful -- FOX is promoting the show, on the most visible platform that isn't trademarked by the National Football League. Which, incidentally, they don't have this year, so they can't promote it there.
An accident? How confused can I become?

I'm nauseated to think that you might be right about the gist of the commercial, KingofCretins. But even on the terms you seem to be stating, I'm not sure about it. The LOVER! KILLER! part is insipid. Substitute Jean-Claude Van Damme and it works just as well. Then there's the Snow White part at the end, and they don't meet. Even with what I prize as my big tolerance for ambiguity, still not sure that they meet, and what does that do for the non-Joss viewer?
Fox admits airing Dollhouse spot on American Idol was "an accident", vow to carry on campaign of no publicity for the show.

Am I missing the joke here?
Wait, did you just say "witty"? So, it's not true? So, I basically am the most gullible fool around here?
Can I somehow become a native speaker? I mean, can I buy that in a store or on ebay or something? Damn you, English language!

Just curious: What was the biggest exposure a Firefly-ad got back in the day?

[ edited by wiesengrund on 2009-01-15 13:46 ]
The tweet that wisengrund linked to was written by me in a fit of whimsy. I was very bored at work and haven't had my lunch yet so please don't take it seriously. It was intended to be cutting edge satire a lame attempt at humour.
How could it be anything other than a joke? FOX is going to put together an ad that they don't intend to air? Then air it during time they didn't sell on their most watched show? I assumed "ain't that fun" meant "behold this guy's acerbic sense of humor".

I don't remember more than a couple "Firefly" commercials, to be honest. I do remember a good amount of "Drive" commercials.
When I see that ad I think 'Hey, a new J.J. Abrams show?'. Perhaps that is the point.

ETA: To be more precise, I think : 'Sounds a bit like Alias, could be good', eventhough I went off Alias quickly.
I was excited. I never watch AI, but I was stuck at my parent's house last night and they watch it religiously after dinner. I had just tweeted "No Dollhouse ads" when the Dollhouse promo aired. Hey, I have no problem eating crow!
It would make sense for it to be the point. Who is "better" between them isn't the point as much as who is more marketable -- that isn't even debatable. So JJ the thing up for a few episodes and then hit 'em with the Joss (I'm reminding myself of the Klimt vs. Monet debate in "The Freshman").
It looks like their trying to say
Main character is hot. Show has action. Watch.

Still, nice trailer. I especially liked 'actions have consequences'. Echo looked like Rogue Slayer Faith or on drugs or something. Cool.

[ edited by J.I.G. on 2009-01-15 14:27 ]
If they keep airing that, it'll get people to watch. People not us. Which, yay.
I don't think it was insipid, I think it was appealing to a broad audience and it was one of the types of commercials that I was hoping for, to be honest. If it makes you think "ooh, reminds me of Alias", that almost definitely is a good thing. They don't necessarily need to aim at the "Joss fans who were already going to watch it" demographic. Glad to see them finally getting some advertising going. b!X gets many bonus cool guy points for the title of the video :).
It's bookended by the theme of taking-vs.-abandoning responsibility at the start and the theme of being someone else's fantasy vs. being yourself at the end, with a creamy sci fi/fantasy/action filling. It looks (to me) like my wish for North by Northwest meets Vertigo has been granted!
Haha, nice one, Pointy!
I like that almost 30 million people saw this. The show looks snazzy, hoppin' and commercial and Eliza looks great. Oh, and "Actions have consequences...What if they don't?" Nice. I like that the commercial appears aimed at everyone but also has "By Joss Whedon of Buffy the Vampire Slayer" supertitles (correct use of word?). Cool.

Of course, this commercial does not evoke the meditative philosophical depths the show also goes for, what Harry Lennix talks about in his recent interview (another thread) - tackling humanistic issues of identity, memory, etc. Nor should this commercial go there, not while being aired during AI.

Pointy! If Dollhouse can be characterized as "North by Northwest" meets "Vertigo," i.e., compared to anything made before, that means that "Dollhouse" ipso facto can't be original and thus cannot be good! (Inside joke. Other thread.) Seriously, I like the idea of a cross between NbyN and Vertigo. Two of my favorite movies ever; so different, yet from the same master. Love.
I really couldn't be more excited/thrilled about this...unless, you know, it aired TODAY. Somehow, a month seems like a million years right now.
Well, they missed "Wearer of Boots" but apart from that, I think it touched the bases it needed to touch to get mainstream bums on seats. And I hope millions upon millions of people think "Cool, reminds me of 'Alias'" (at least partly cos it is a bit like 'Alias' just with added metaphysical goodness/sci-fi cream filling but mainly cos millions upon millions of viewers would be just aces).
I like that it's targeting the mainstream and all that, but I'm a little worried that people wanting smart, provocative television won't be interested by this.

[ edited by Racoon Boy on 2009-01-15 15:08 ]
Yeah but we're already watching anyway ;-).
I'm glad they're promoting it, but if I wasn't a Joss fan, I don't think that ad would make me tune in.
I think that the amount of people who want smart, provocative television, who would think that based on this ad, "Dollhouse" is not smart, provocative television, and who prefer smart, provocative television to the total exclusion of action-packed, sexy television probably add up to about a 0.1 Nielson. If that.
Put me in the I-think-this-is-a-good-promo-designed-to-draw-in-people-who-were-not-Joss-Whedon-fans-and-who-may-not-be-looking-for-lots-of-philosophical-depth-but-like-hot-action camp.

In other words, I think this is doing exactly what it should. Now, they should air it a lot.
"people wanting smart, provocative television"

They're watching documentaries on public broadcasting.
I only called the KILLER!, etc., montage part of the commercial insipid, and I stand by that. I agree that if we wanted to be smarter, or better informed, we would be watching documentaries, or reading more news and books. I'm following what I consider the best part of the current dramatic literature in the hope that it will make me wiser.
I hate that they use that voice from the early buffy promos! With the title, people are going to have a hard time taking the show seriously. The "creepy" voice doesn't really help.
I think of it as the Seriously Awesome TV You Should Watch voice. It is like the Coming This Summer, This Movie Will Rock Your World voice, but different.
To me it's the Voice of Cheese™ i.e. almost cringe inducingly OTT (whereas the voice at the start of 'Heroes' actually was cringe inducingly OTT - seriously, I hear that, I wince) but it seems to be a more or less accepted part of US TV so WTF do I know ;).

Guys, I need some HELP. I have a friend that doesn't believe that Buffy is the best series ever. Could you find me at least one tv writer or one top that has Buffy on the top, or something?
Yeah, it's over the top. But so common here that it sort of requires a step back to remember it.
I also have friends who think Buffy isn't the best tv ever. In fact most of mine think that. Isn't it nice how friends can have different opinions?
Off-topic: I can't decide which socks to wear today. Any suggestions?
The City of Eliza effect at the end of the spot no longer looks like a rash to me.
But couldn't you help me find one? He sais that if he sees at least one, he gets convinced. I was looking but I only found anonymous blogs.
I don't understand what you are asking us to help you find.
I also don't understand why we're discussing it in this thread.
Rikardo you'd be better off posting about it over at The setup is better there for questions like that.
wiesengrund, your English is superb, even if your sarcasm meter needs tweaking. I even detected a ChandlerBingInflection in there.

Really -- better than many native speakers.

Off to watch the commercial now.
My favorite part of Simon's tweeted jokes is I almost always see them right upon waking up, on my iPod Touch, before I even get out of bed. It helps maximize the picnic. Good times.
Simon's like Branston Pickle - without him it's just not a picnic.

(and I suggest going foot commando - nothing says "Fuck you winter !" like no socks in January. Not many things says pneumonia quite like it either but rough with smooth/omelettes/eggs etc.)
I watched it again. I originally didn't like the Echo-is-the-city at the end, and I still don't. I'm not sure why.
Speaking of the Echo-is-the-city bit at the end, is that a new logo/typeface for Dollhouse? I think I like it.
Too naked for ya? ;)
It's new if the last thing you saw was the very, very first stuff, which is still used on the "official" wiki. But it's not new since months, no.
I find The City of E-Lies-uh conjurable now, instead of itchy. Echo rising with sleepy eyes as the camera zooms out:

* Is like the city's dreams taking physical form, which is one way of putting what the Dollhouse does. And what Dollhouse does.
* Could be waking up from an assignment or activating to play a predetermined part in someone else's dream or metaphorically waking up from the unconsciousness of being a doll.
* Embodies the tension between the individual consciousness and the community's claims on the individual.

ETA They pretty much pixilated her bottom, so if the viewer is looking for part of her to objectify, you've basically got her eyes. Her dangerously soulful eyes.

[ edited by Pointy on 2009-01-15 18:25 ]
Thanks, pillboxed. And now that I know what a Chandler Bling Inflection is, I can credit the man properly.:)
Sure the ad hits the lowest common denominator sweet spots--but thank god for that. If the show doesn't deliver enough eyeballs to the advertisers, we don't get the Joss goodness. There will never be, alas, enough of those eyeballs who are in it for the deeper philosophical questions or the sophisticated games with genre expectations etc. etc. etc. that we oh-so-superior beings are looking for. Essentially we're parasitic upon the viewing pleasure of people who just want the hot chicks and the action and maybe some clever quips. Lets hope that that Joss finds a way to walk that tightrope (and, in the longer term, lets hope that some day someone at Showtime or HBO says "you know what, wouldn't it be great to see what Joss Whedon would do if you just told him to write what he wanted to write without worrying too much about ratings?").
Just curious: What was the biggest exposure a Firefly-ad got back in the day?

The Firefly "girl in a box" promos did actually air during American Idol. Except back then, it was the first season of AI, during the summer with comparatively modest ratings. Certainly not the 32.51 million that saw (and hopefully paid attention) to this one.
By the way, it isn't HD, but the "watch in higher quality" link beneath the video is active now, and it's definitely crisper.
If anybody remembers back to "Drive", that was all over American Idol (and FOX). Like, all the time. But hardly anybody turned up for the start. I think the contents of promos have a lot to do with the success rate.

I was going to link to the old Firefly promos, including the rather hilarious Space Hooker one and the Space Cowboys one (I seem to remember that one had a techno remix song on it?), however they all appear to have gone missing from Youtube.
You know, with the odd rattling off of character descriptions from that old ad they could repurpose it into a Dollhouse ad. "She could be an outer space hooker, a guy named Jayne, or a girl in a box!"
She already is a girl in a box. This box is just under the floor in a techno-magical spa.

We have discovered the recurring theme of the Whedonverse: putting people in boxes.
Little boxes, little boxes...
Perhaps those Firefly season 2 folks will hire several of the actives to act out a new Firefly episode.
I'm reminded of a Jane Espenson blog entry where she mused a bit about how the people who always claim they don't like sci-fi maybe instead just don't really like stories that are idea driven. Instead, they prefer stories that are character driven or better yet, event driven. Sometimes people just don't want to have to think too hard, ya know? ...unlike all us weirdos who's druthers definitely crave them obsessable, dissectable ideas.

I do think the promo has the potential of appealing to all-of-those-people-I-really-don't-get and just maybe it will tantalize them enough to watch that by Episode 6, when the Jossness is released, they'll be primed for the brainwashing. Although, clean brains are overrated.

If interested here's the Jane in Progress link

[ edited by Caroline on 2009-01-15 20:13 ]
That's an interesting Jane Espenson line... did she mean that sci fi is necessarily more idea driven than character / event driven? I definitely like character-driven stories. And character-driven sci fi.

That ad didn't do anything for me but I'm on board already. It's probably a good ad. Liked the start, and how twitchy Eliza looked. But the cheesy-voice-guy definitely took something away from it.
(I don't think your link works, BreathesStory. Or it might just be me?)
Fixed that link
Fox is airing the ad on their highest-rated show, so, plaudits. But does AI necessarily draw a broad audience? My impression, and it's just that, nothing more, is that Idol's not a huge hit with the male 18-49 bracket. That's the group advertisers drool over, and that's the one that this ad seems to target. If the viewership skews more toward females and families than action fan-boys, wouldn't 24, Prison Break and TSCC be more likely spots to place this particular ad, even with lower viewership?
I think the concern (which seems oddly shared by those here and by Fox executives - don't stone me!) with "the unwashed masses" is not (just) that they don't want a story that's too idea-driven; it's that they don't even want a story that's too character-driven. After all, what does taking out character-depth and putting in whiz-bang-action do if not push the character-driven aspects into the background? There's a sense, I think, that you get people hooked with action (or procedure, or single-episode drama) and then bring on the character and the big ideas.

I think, interestingly, if we took Lost as a model, we would see that it started out being intensely action-driven (the first episode is fairly straight-forward survive-on-a-desert-island stuff), then it hooked people with characterization (get to know these characters) while only slowly dribbling in the big ideas (first weird, mysterious hints, now whole time-space-continuum stuff). That model seems to have worked fairly well for Lost, getting people who would otherwise not be asking questions about the time-space continuum hooked and THEN springing the big ideas/questions on them.

I don't think Joss typically works that way, though. Buffy and Firefly both wear their other-worldliness and their concern-with-ideas rather proudly on their sleeves (and then get even deeper), and it seems like Dollhouse does too (since its premise is a big idea). I suspect they are trying to play that down a bit in order to draw in viewers, and then the deeper characterization and focus on ideas/questions will begin.
There was actually an article the other day about how the Idol audience is getting older, with a median age now of 40.3 years.
What "Drive" couldn't boast in its ads that "Dollhouse" can is a more or less naked Eliza Dushku.

And that's actually OKAY. It's okay to get them in the door. If they come in and can get hooked, they'll hear everything Joss really has to say on the subject. But it's OKAY to sell the hotness to get them watching. One of my favorite Joss interviews was years back, pre-UPN Buffy, maybe even pre-Season 4. It was in Maxim or Stuff or something. The interviewer asked him if he was ever worried about drawing male viewers to the show, and his answer -- Joss Whedon's answer, he of Equality Now and "because you're still asking that question" -- was "have you seen the women on our show?"
I will honestly say, if I was not familiar with Joss Whedon and/or Dollhouse already, this preview would do absolutely nothing for me. We can all speculate that it's appealing to some general population, but how can we know this if we don't hear from someone who had their interest piqued by this ad alone?

And if someone like me, bound to be a loyal viewer of this show, would never be snared by the ad, what about others who would probably love the show but would be turned away by this ad?

That said, I'm glad they're finally promoting it.
I can't think of a good trailer for Buffy that would have made most of the people who ought to watch it think "hey, that'll be my cup of tea." I mean, even that brilliant S3 trailer that was posted here a few days ago--I know lots of my friends who would look at that and think "cheesy melodrama about high school kids, demons and a big snake. Why would I watch that?"

The answer, in the end, is in the execution, and there's no way to catch that in a 30-second spot. If the show can stay alive by catering to the "hot chicks, hot guys and action" crowd, while slowly growing among the more, um, "washed" crowd through word of mouth (you know: "no, I know it looks cheesy, but you really should watch it"), that's fine by me.
What is (rather condescendingly to the rest, I might say without meaning offense) being called the "washed" crowd undoubtedly has already heard of the show, already heard of the man who is making it, and already know how he reps out on the quality of greater intellectual and sociopolitical wonkishness in subtext and meaning and his great writing and humor.

In other words, they are already on board if they are ever going to be. And they amount to somewhere between a 3.0 and 5.0 rating. It's like the old problem of pro wrestling -- when I was a fan, a "smark" (smart mark), we all discussed how wrestling would always draw about a 4.0 just for being wrestling. It wouldn't get into pop culture phenomenon range on cable (6.0 and higher) except when the writing was good enough to make it "cool" to "normal" people -- Steve Austin, the nWo, and things people weren't ashamed to wear on t-shirts. You didn't need to sell that base audience. You needed to sell the people who weren't going to watch just because it's wrestling.

We already know who is going to watch "Dollhouse" just because it's Joss -- namely, this entire site and the Joss fandom in general will pretty much all tune in. Most will keep watching out of loyalty even if they are only so so. What the show will need is people who don't already want Joss because its Joss.
shambleau, it would be impossible to air Dollhouse commercials on TSCC or Prison break since they aren't on the air now. Prison Break has been canceled and Fox will burn off the remaining eps in April as the lead in to Dollhouse. TSCC (not canceled yet) will start back up on 2/13 with Dollhouse.

Hopefully we will start to see ads during House, Bones, and 24 in the next few weeks, but showing the ad during AI (during the 9-9:30 timeframe there was 32.51 million viewers last night) is the absolute best thing they can do right now.

To target the Fox demo, I am hoping for an ad during the NFC championship game this sunday. And I hope it is as sexy and cheesy as possible if that works to get the eyeballs there on 2/13. Pour on the cheese in huge disgusting gloppy bucketfuls, please!
Exactly, KingofCretins.

We need, not to put too fine a point on it, more cretins, and that is to whom this is designed to appeal.
Except for the part about people who weren't already fans of Joss being "cretins".

[ edited by KingofCretins on 2009-01-15 20:53 ]
I hope it is clear that my tongue was placed firmly in my cheek. as I said that they were...
Hmm... interesting points all around. But we are still speculating that this is the type of trailer that appeals to people that are not us. How can we know this with any certainty? I'm assuming there must be studies and marketing people know how to target things.

I'd also argue that a lot of people that this (and indeed Joss Whedon work) would appeal to may not be familiar with the man and/or his work. They may have thought Buffy was a cheesy high school show and avoided it, they may see this add and think it's another mindless, silly action show about a hot chick.

But I guess that's what we need the 13 episodes to air for. Bring in the masses with some action and hot chicks, then keep the show running for the word of mouth to spread that it's actually really smart and deep and occasionally witty as well.

So FOX has begun promoting. Let's see them keep it up, and follow through on their promise to air every episode.
Well we all know sex sells. Who doesn't like looking at beautiful people? I just wouldn't want the spot to be false advertising though. You know, so people end up feeling sort of misled?

We want them to tune in, yes, and then we want them to tune in to the next show and the next show and the next show and...

Not that I know what the show will be like. I've been rigidly avoiding ALL spoilers and hints. I want to see it 'cold.' So maybe sexed up IS a true representation of the show. Somehow I doubt it.

All these hypothetical meanderings/wankings... I really wish I was talking about the actual show instead.
Actual is better.
I think.
Those in and out of the dollhouse might argue that point.

29 Days. BIG yearnings. Hey, maybe we need a countdown on the front page? That could be fun.
Do we know that action is what people want? Didn't they amp up the action at the beginning of T:SCC, and didn't it have big ratings drops after the first two episodes? I have no idea what people want, I just hope people 1) tune in and 2) keep watching. It's up to Joss to make a good show.
People want stuff they like, beyond that, if networks (or anyone else) knew exactly what people wanted then every show would be a huge hit and run for 10 years. That said, I suspect the TV version of "No-one ever got fired for buying Microsoft" probably has "sexy people and action" in there somewhere ;).
True, Saje. Also, I think from what we know, the show IS rather sexy. There's clearly going to be more than a little bit seen of Eliza, and doesn't Tahmoh get topless in the first episode, and aren't there coed showers in the Dollhouse? So, I don't think it's exactly false advertising to give the impressions that it's a sexy show.

Oh, and without relinquishing any of my intellectualism and feminism, I can say that this promo would interest me.
Not everyone who watched Buffy watched it for smartness and provocativeness. That didn't diminish the smartness and provocativeness of the show. I don't think advertising Dollhouse as something that philosophers will be writing essays for years to come (as I'm confident will happen) would bring a lot of audience to the premiere.

Years ago I saw a program on Shakespeare, where it was pointed out that Shakespeare's plays were written in a way that made them appealing to a wide range of viewers. His works -- poetic, philosophical -- also had a lot of 'low' humour, sword fights, murders, incest, etc, for people who weren't interested in philosophical matters.

There is nothing wrong with wrapping a clever, deep show in a packaging of exciting action by hot-looking people.

[ edited by Effulgent on 2009-01-15 21:55 ]
It is not at all false advertising to imply that the show is sexy with a lot of action. Not at all. The sexy and the action also doesn't preclude the stuff that gets geeks like us thinking and talking. Seems to me that all Joss' shows have been jam packed with the sexy and the action.
I liked it, and I might have tuned in just because of it. Of course, it's not objective, but it's an attempt, at least.

"Actions have consequences."

"What if they didn't?"

Now that I can understand what they're saying, I love it even more. I am curious how many people fast-forwarded though the commercials and who watched live.

I also wonder when the next one will air...

And I love your title, bix!
Indeed, TamaraC. When I got into Joss's shows I became hooked on his recipe of weaving together sexy/actiony with philosophical depth. It's become my favorite kind of art. Now I've got a jones for smart stuff wrapped up and presented as what is typically not thought of as "smart" - i.e., "genre" stuff. Now I look for that combination everywhere but mainly don't find it. I usually find just the one (sexy/actiony) or the other (philosophical, deep, but dry). I get all thwarted.

This thwarting is what I mean when I tell people that Joss has ruined a lot of TV and films for me. Sometimes, though, I find what I'm looking for. Lately I've rediscovered the glory of Douglas Sirk films: gorgeous technicolor soap operas on the surface, biting social commentary on the down low.
Gawd I hate the sound of that voice over guy. If there ever was a VO 'talent' that was designed to drive folks away from a product, it is that guy. Hated him when he did the Buffy intros and Commercials. Still hate him now, now that he's back spewing his kind of awefulness all over the Dollhouse ad(s).

Best thing Joss ever did for Buffy...EVER...was to replace that horrifically bad VO 'talent' with ASH. Please do the same for Dollhouse.

And now that I think of it...PLEASE, don't have that guy doing any Voice Overs on the Dollhouse intros. I will refuse to watch Dollhouse in protest if that ends up being the case.

Did I mention that I hate the sound of that guys voice?
I will refuse to watch Dollhouse in protest if that ends up being the case.

That seems rather melodramatic and self-defeating.
I don't think that Whedon shows are an elite thing. It's not about high or low, just a vibe (to be admittedly sorta New Age). My problem with the commercial is its disjointedness. It isn't coherent on any frequency that I'm receiving, and people from wherever and thinking whatever tend to pick up on wrongness, and move away.

[ edited by dreamlogic on 2009-01-16 00:03 ]
The thing with the commercial is that it's 30 seconds, 'cos it's a TV spot. In those 30 seconds you need to tell people:

a) New show
b) Basic show concept
c) What kind of thing the show does - action, adventure, whatevers
d) Who's in it
e) Any other factors (writers, directors)

So it's roughly a promo which says ACTION ACTION SEXY ACTION HOT LADY MAN WHO DID BUFFY ACTION. I'm okay with that. I mean, I loved a show called "Buffy The Vampire Slayer", and sat through a season of which the primary plot was the US military having a demon hunting base in a Uni house.
What dreamlogic said - all of it.

Some of the cleverest people I know just aren't into the "vibe" of Joss shows, exactly. And some pretty dippy people, like me, just love 'em ;).

And after a great few seconds at the start, I too just found that promo a little out-of-control and thus not compelling. I'm all for sexy action (now I feel like I should be scrawling my phone number on a bathroom wall...) but it just moved too fast without anything to hook me. Plus, yes, voice-over guy, yeesh.

But then, it seemed pretty typical of a lot of New Show ads, right? And with all their marketing millions, they probably know better than me what works. I hope.
So it's roughly a promo which says ACTION ACTION SEXY ACTION HOT LADY MAN WHO DID BUFFY ACTION. I'm okay with that.

I'm ok with that too.

Digg the commercial. 6 so far.
Dugg! (10 now...)
I don't think that promo would make me the least bit interested if I didn't know about the show already. In fact, it's a bit of a turn-off. I kinda agree with the youtube poster who said it looks like a porn trailer.
I'm not too worried, it seems a lot like the early Buffy promos...
Weeds reference, gossi ? Only seen the first season so far, but I love it and its theme song, overly obvious and overdone as it is in its "let's-make-fun-of-suburbia-yet-again" vibe.

This ad is...not what ads for porn look like. It looks like your typical action-drama network ad (especially something on Fox, it's a very Fox-ish ad), with a few choice quick-clever and/or mysterious-intrigue lines thrown in. Naked girl at the end optional (so it seemed like some of the TV spots I've seen for 24 in the past--the ones I try to avoid because they're often way too spoilerish, luckily PVR shields me from them mostly--except 24's have rarely if ever highlighted any of the female leads' sex appeal).
I don't think advertising Dollhouse as something that philosophers will be writing essays for years to come (as I'm confident will happen) would bring a lot of audience to the premiere.

But how hilarious if they tried that angle! "Bursting with deconstructible plot turns! Feminist ambiguities! Cultural critique! Tune in now & get your next Slayage abstract ready before the competition does!"

I like the ad. I think it makes the premise pretty clear & looks potentially exciting and sexy with a little bit of sci-fi, and I'm so used to cheesy-voice guy that I just assume he has nothing to do with what the show's really like.
Shiny! And Whoo-hoo! Everybody remember that Fox had a Dollhouse 'American Idol' TV spot.

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