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January 16 2009

(SPOILER) EW.com previews Dollhouse. And there's some quotes from Joss and Eliza about how the show will be more accessible for viewers.

That's a new picture, right? All wilderness-y, but with a radio. I'll bet there's a whole story behind that. Does Eliza look awful skinny to anyone else?
Nope, we've seen that picture before (maybe in an IO9 bit or maybe Sci-Fi Wire ?) - twice in fact, since I remember they had the same photo repeated on the page for some strange reason. Re: weight, it's hard to tell given she's pretty petite to begin with (seeing the sternum etc. can just mean "lean" rather than "skinny", depending on the individual's build).
Is this the first time we've heard that Joss actually has recycled the lost November storyline? Now it's Alpha that's missing...
I totally missed the previous viewings of this picture. I'm a bad geek. Re re: weight, I was keeping that in mind. Build is a factor. My bones are mostly visible even though I'm not thin because they're large. But I worry when someone smaller shows that much bonage. I think Eliza needs to eat some pasta.

ETA: aapac, I don't understand what you're talking about at all.

[ edited by dreamlogic on 2009-01-16 12:39 ]
aapac, November was never missing, it was always Alpha.
I don't want an accessible show.
Accessible doesn't necessarily mean dumbed down.
Really interesting artical, I'd never heard of "a mystery about a dangerous,active named Alpha" untill today, sounds like another good aspect of the show.
The Alpha story line has been known for a while, though it seems to be one of the less talked about aspects of the show. I imagine it may be something that gets put off until later in the season when they start to get into the mythology of the show.
I'm pretty sure Alpha pops up in "Gray Hour". Which could be episode 2. Or episode 4. And I think he's not only mentioned, but actually does something non-trivial.

But yeah, I'm guessing that storyline should pick up by the second half of the season and is therefore not mentioned very often.
I had wondered about her skinniness myself, but looking at the picture again I notice that her shoulders are pulled back, which would make her sternum more visible. In combination with the light, the primary source being directly above her and bright, it really makes her sternum stand out. Her "sweat" helps reflect the light too, making the contrast even greater.

When I ignore her sternum, she looks the same as any other picture. To me anyway.
Eliza does look alittle skinny on this picture. One thing concerns me, is that Fox will give the show a fighting chance l remember 2 shows that showed promise one with Eliza and one created by Joss. They were cancelled. At least Reapers' back
One thing concerns me, is that Fox will give the show a fighting chance l remember 2 shows that showed promise one with Eliza and one created by Joss. They were cancelled.

Well, there's no debating how Firefly went down, but Tru Calling was handled fairly well from what I remember, and was cancelled mid-second season because it simply wasn't catching on with viewers.

Despite the move to Fridays, I do think FOX is trying to nurture Dollhouse a bit (i.e., committing to airing all 13 episodes, showing broad-appealing ads during AI, etc.) For his part, Joss is rolling out the show in a manner designed to be accessible to a more casual viewer (with eps. 1-6 being more standalone) while also setting up for larger mythology-explorations (eps. 7-13). All that, along with a stated lower expectation for ratings on a Friday, and I do think that Dollhouse has a good chance of surviving -- it really seems that it's going to come down to the factor of luck that's always in play here (i.e., a great show can still fail if it's just not what a general audience is looking for).
Rikardo, you do understand how the American broadcast TV business model works. Right? This is Fox not BBC. It is a for profit business.
So, how about that Dollhouse, eh?
I enjoyed it personally though it did seem to flag a bit in its 15th year.
I wonder what wacky Dollhouse clip Fox will show us today.
I hope we get to see some behind the scenes lab stuff.

Not that Whedon wackiness isn't fun too.
Oh, right! It's Friday, I forgot all about that.
It'd be cool if they show us how they actually imprint the consciousnesses (though I guess they might be waiting for patents to be granted and so on ?).

Failing that, although i'm certain we won't get anything like this, i'd love to see footage from the writer's room as they e.g. break a story (or do anything really, even just watching that bunch of people shoot the shit would probably be cracking value).
And thus the new set yell is born - Tah-moh !
He seems to be wearing his hand-drawn Sugarshock shirt.
Well damn. I like my shows hard to follow...
TamaraC, I understand that, but before they order a show to be dumbed down, shouldn't they see if the audience gets it first?
Well damn. I like my shows hard to follow...

Yeah, I hope no-one ever understands it. In fact, I hope it actively reduces understanding in the world (of everything, not just fictional TV drama) and that after 4 seasons i'm incapable of parsing basic sentences.

He seems to be wearing his hand-drawn Sugarshock shirt.

You have to wonder if he ever takes it off (cool shirt though, I wouldn't, ever). Or maybe it's his lucky shirt (it being the first shot and all) ?

[ edited by Saje on 2009-01-16 20:59 ]
...

Saje... That's not even close to what I meant...
Rikardo, who said the show was ordered to be dumbed down besides people on the Internet speculating based on nothing? Did Joss or Eliza say it was dumbed down? Did Dana Walden, Kevin Reilly, or Peter Ligouri say it was dumbed down?

I don't think "accessible" necessarily means dumbed down. Hot chicks and action does not equate to "stupid".
I don't fear "accessible" when it means "let's back up and introduce this complicated thing more slowly/clearly." I fear "accessible" used as code for "less to think about" but I doubt that's what's happened here.
TamaraC, I hope you're right.
Saje... That's not even close to what I meant...

Fairly close to what you said though I reckon.

(or I should say, ah, so you weren't also being sarcastic then, sorry ;)

[ edited by Saje on 2009-01-17 01:21 ]
I likes my shows like I likes my men - accessible, and hard to follow.

This is why it too me so long to find the right one. Or one at all, actually.

; > (winky smiley to indicate a state of jokinghood and not the start of a gender war in any way, shape or form, followed by a row of teensy, tiny winky smileys for teeny winky smiley emphasis. ; > ; > ; > ; > ; > ; > ; > ; >; > ; > ; > ; > ; > ; > ; > ; >)
*ignores smileys* Bring it on ! From now on we refuse to change light bulbs, lift dishes down from high shelves or put spiders out the bathroom window. Think what you'd be giving up ! And then think what we'd be giving up ! ... OK, you win that one but for the purposes of this argument from now on it's not about what we're giving up it's more about ... umm ... who has more penises !

(that's more like a gender skirmish BTW, i'd start a gender war but i'm a bit tired. Rain check ?)
It is odd that, while I'm tall enough to reach the highest shelf in our place, and I actually like spiders & bugs & such, and I'm invariably the one to replace the light bulbs, I do, in fact, seem to leave the garbage for my partner to take out to the dumpster, which is such a strange little sexist automatic assumption-glitch of mine.

Maybe it is because he has more penises than me. It never occurred to me that they were involved in the process, but then, I've probably never watched him at the dumpster with the garbage.

Illuminating.

But later, my tired UK friend, for the resumption of the forever war... ; >
Um, so... how about that Dollhouse, eh?
It totally jumped the shark in the 400th episode. I mean really, dancing elephants ?? Did Whedon honestly think re-introducing Cheese-man would mask that outrage ?!?

And no-one counts penises where putting out the rubbish is concerned - which is no-one's first mistake ! This is because it's seldom done naked. But if it were it'd become readily apparent that, on average, men have one more, thus immediately winning any competition based on the number of penises you have (which is why it's important to make every competition about penis quantity as quickly as possible).
Why would you put spiders out the bathroom window? We like to keep 'em around.
Hahahahahahahahhahahahahahahahahaha! Okay, I'm going to bed; you are all insane. These two things are unrelated as far as I can tell.

Why would you put spiders out the bathroom window?


Jeez, don't they teach you anything at Princeton?
The Indianapolis 500 takes on a whole new meaning.
Wow, you went to bed even later than I did, zeitgeist!

Jeez, don't they teach you anything at Princeton?

They really don't. My husband is the student, I just live here and take care of spiders.
Spiders left inside do their thing, which is fine, as far as that goes. Better than fine, if you have ants. But then the spiders grow big. And some of em will even bite you at night. And not the good-nuclear-mutation-enhancement kind of bite, either. So unless you desire to build up an immunity to spider-venom, you might consider putting the spiders out the bathroom window.
Well, there aren't really any dangerous species in the UK. I just don't like spiders ;).
Haven't you ever read Charlotte's Web? Spiders are awesome and kind and have excellent spelling. They could also save your pig's life, if it came to that.
Haven't you ever read Charlotte's Web?

And that's another thing, they made me cry when I was 8 ;).
Yes, first story that ever truly broke my heart. But I'd never put a spider out the window, unless I felt like it was going to have a better life out there.

What is this thread about?
It's about the tangled web of identity that we all weave from the semi-reliable knowledge our memories provide. So spiders then, more or less.

(I just can't have them in the house unfortunately and i'd rather put them out the window than kill them since they've done nothing to me beyond trigger an irrational fear)
Well I just hope you don't have a pig that needs saving.
If I did i'd keep him/her underneath the bathroom window ;).
It'd be cool if they show us how they actually imprint the consciousnesses

Am I the only person who's hoping for some subtle allusion to Joe 90?

Am I the only person who knows what the hell I'm even talking about?
Bad puppet show from the '60s? Gosh no :p.
How can any show filmed in Supermarionation be "bad," my good sir?

But...kidding aside, it's got to be an influence on the premise for Dollhouse, right?

ETA: Has Joss ever addressed this directly?

[ edited by snot monster from outer space on 2009-01-18 01:27 ]
I think we'll see a lot of influences coming up in the next few weeks and months. I'll go out on a limb and say "The Prisoner", "The Matrix" and "Human Target" will all get a mention. Whether or not a convincing case can be made for them is another story.
Oh, "The Prisoner" is an obvious one, and one I'm sure that Joss would cop to (he cited the Prisoner as the reason for those big white spheres in the Initiative in Buffy, right?). The experience for the Dolls in each episode will be very "Prisoner" like, I think--some bizarre, inexplicable adventure which has no perceptible consequences (for them).

Matrix? Hmmm...I don't really see that. There's an odd sort of way in which having characters whose identities can be wiped actually works to confirm the reality of the world in which they operate. That is, without a stable and persistent "world" the instability of the operatives as individuals becomes uninteresting.

Nor do I really see "Human Target" as a source. I can see that particular episodes might go in that direction: but then, with this premise individual episodes can play in just about anybody's playpen. I don't see that particular thread being privileged, though. I suppose there'll be episodes where they are acting as some real person that nobody happens to have seen a photo of, but I hope that those aren't too common. In these days where you can send a photo to someone on their cellphone, stories like that are getting pretty hard on the suspension of disbelief.

But Joe 90--well, come on: Joe 90 was an operative. He got imprinted each week with somebody else's knowledge and skills. True, his own identity wasn't wiped and he had to wear special specs to keep the imprinting active (and they never showed the "very special episodes" where he was hired for sex)--but the similarities are more than just thematic or tonal. I'm hoping that the device that imprints characters on the dolls will be called the Brain Impulse Galvanoscope Record And Transfer.
Matrix? Hmmm...I don't really see that. There's an odd sort of way in which having characters whose identities can be wiped actually works to confirm the reality of the world in which they operate. That is, without a stable and persistent "world" the instability of the operatives as individuals becomes uninteresting.


I'm guessing the Matrix-comparisons will come via the "I know Kung Fu!"-scene. They do have quite a resemblance in terms of imprinting knowledge and skills/muscle memory. Also, Joss mentioned Matrix himself as one of the influences (with a nice quote about brains... and tattoos...).

Agreed on "The Prisoner", too bad Patrick McGoohan won't get to see how many allusions and homages 2009 will have in store for "The Prisoner". (It was Douglas Petrie who repeatedly pointed out the "The Prisoner"-references in the "The Initiative"-commentary.)

I've just now bought myself "Never Let Me Go", since it was repeatedly referred to by Tahmoh and Joss. Anyone read it? Something to look forward to?
I'm a big fan of Kazuo Ishiguro, and thought Never Let Me Go was a solid offering, if not my favoritest book of his ever. Definitely a good read.

And Saje I'm glad to hear you have a contingency plan should you ever get a pig.

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