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January 16 2009

Understanding the Dollhouse. Fox just released a new Dollhouse behind-the-scenes featurette which includes interviews with Joss and the cast, as well as some new footage from the show itself.

Awesometastic promo. Put that on during American Idol just once.
I thought this said it - better than I've seen it said thus far.

Poi-feck. This should be everywhere.
I’m not sure whether they’ll show it during AI (which would be indeed awesome... but also unlikely), but I guess that we can look forward to an extended version that will end up on the DVD.
Genius. Love seeing the quick clips, so many different versions of Eliza.
Fantastic. I think I can honestly say that if I weren't a Joss fan and I happened across this promo, I'd be intrigued and would make a point of checking the show out. This featurette makes "Dollhouse" sound fun and philosophically fascinating at the same time. Love it. I'm all tingly with anticipation for this.
This is actually: this, posted earlier.
No it isn't. That thread was originally referring to a completely different behind-the-scenes video, which you can find on Fox’s official Dollhouse site. ;-)
I stand corrected :) Next time something like this happens, just drop us an email on it.
I'm so excited I think I wet my pants! lol
This is cool stuff. I'm excited. I've been waiting for DOLLHOUSE for so long, I just hope I won't die before it premieres. That would be really disappointing. (some might say I'd have bigger problems than DOLLHOUSE at that stage, but come on, missing out on DOLLHOUSE would be the real downer...)
zeitgeist: Ok, I'm glad that it was settled. ;-)

[ edited by Anuris on 2009-01-16 23:17 ]
Cheers, Anuris.
I love the part where Eliza is like, "Nuh uh, I'm not that girl!" I cannot wait for this show!
If they can't play this during American Idol, maybe just a 30-second loop of this part.
This is grade A awesome.
I got geekbumps!

That seems like something perfect for, like, Entertainment Tonight. If they even still have that show.
I really enjoyed this piece - something to intrigue everyone. And I love Joss' last line. Hee - be afraid, be very afraid . . .
This to me seems more likely to pull in people than the TV promo they ran... well maybe if they cut the part about... darn I can't remember if it was philosophy or psychology. One of those pseudo-'sciences'. ;)
*gasp* Psychology isn't a pseudoscience!
At last a promo that actually makes the show look interesting to a wider audience (I'm hoping).
Finally!!! I have been looking for this video since my flight two weeks ago. i saw this video on frontier airlines when they started playing commercials for us passengers that didn't pay for satellite or movies. It's shorter than I thought it was. I think in my excitement for seeing a promo for Dollhouse during my flight, my mind exaggerated how long it actually was. LOL.
Here's another video from FOX,very random, lol Tahmoh and Eliza tell Mickey Rourke stories:
"darn I can't remember if it was philosophy or psychology. One of those pseudo-'sciences'. ;) "

Ooh controversial. I'll leave any psychologists around here to defend their pseudo-science. But philosophy isn't science at all and doesn't pretend to be. It's as much pseudo-science as law is

Absolutely awesome promo, btw. I'd totally watch that if I'd never heard of Joss Whedon or Eliza Dushku. Really, really good. It captures the excitement, intelligence, cuteness of Eliza, philosophical interest, Joss in a baseball cap and everything else
Psychology's a soft science but when it's done right it's still a science IMO (you can do anything as pseudo-science - just look at the perpetual motion quacks for physics).

That's a great promo ... Is that a promo ? Cos it'd promote the show well.

Good to see the other dolls in the action (briefly), looked like Ms Lachman in some assassin style hijinks. And I really think Olivia Williams should try to, like, do something to make herself more attractive just cos I have a thing about space and time tearing apart (and she likes a pint of Adnams *fans self ... but in a totally manly way ... like maybe with a cricket bat or something* ;).
So I said that the 30-second promo would do absolutely nothing for me were I not already a Joss fan.

This would do everything for me. It seems like the 30-second is the one destined to bring in fans of mindless action, and this is to bring in people who enjoy fascinating, quality entertainment. It's a pity that this won't be airing on television, or if it does, not as a commercial.
Awesome! By the way, do we know if "zombie slaves" is in the new pilot, or did it get scrapped along with the rest of the material of the previous one? It would make sense that it's still there, since it is in this brand new featurette?
This was great and it is now being sent to all my friends who are questioning whether or not to watch. (Obviously they aren't as crazy about Joss as I am.)

Side note: Did anyone else notice the awesome hat Joss was wearing? :)
What was on the cap (I couldn't make it out) ?
I might be hallucinating, but I swear we've actually seen two completely different "zombie slaves" shots, which was making me think they re-used the line.
What was on the cap (I couldn't make it out) ?

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog.
Dr what-now ? I don't really see that becoming some sort of internet/crossover/new-media sensation - it's too long for one thing, people won't watch it.

They re-shot the "Did I fall asleep ?" bit, they could've re-shot other dialogue too (though I don't remember Adelle's original "pitch" well enough, it's only the cup - of sake ? - that makes me think it's new).

ETcorrect an alcoholic misspelling ;).

[ edited by Saje on 2009-01-17 01:57 ]
Don't you hate it when an alcoholic takes over your computer and starts unspelling? I know I do.
Especially when it's sake (i.e. emphatically NOT saki) that he and/or she is misspelling. I mean, if there's anything you'd think you could rely on an alcoholic spelling correctly ...

I might be hallucinating, but I swear we've actually seen two completely different "zombie slaves" shots, which was making me think they re-used the line.

I hope they kept the eyes. Those things were wonderful.
"I was so drunk, I spelled Saki H-dot-H-dot-M-u-n-r-o"
Under the present circumstances, saje, I would definitely counsel you against any attempts to fan yourself with a cricket bat.

[ edited by toast on 2009-01-17 03:10 ]
Comparing with the old trailer here, the audio for the robots/zombie slaves line seems to be reused, though spliced together a bit differently:

Original: "I know you've heard colorful rumors about (what an active really is. ...) Robots ... Zombie slaves ... They are, of course, quite the opposite. An active is the truest soul among us."

New: "I know you've heard colorful rumors about*Robots ... Zombie Slaves. They are, of course, quite the opposite. An active is the truest soul among us."


The only overlapping video of the scene appears at the end ("truest soul" line), and that appears to be identical as well. I think the reason people are thinking differently is because at the beginning of that part in the new clip, she's drinking some tea, which wasn't seen in the original. But as far as I can tell, it's the same footage. So either they're deciding to keep that stuff in (which would be awesome), or they're still recycling that old stuff.
Aw, you guys made me giggle/snort. Glad no one was around to hear that awkward noise. ;)
I just invited a bunch of people over for the premiere while at Happy Hour tonight. Now I can send this to all of them! Awesome, I'm so counting down the days.
FOX just changed the layout for the Dollhouse site.
Oooo that is a big improvement. It looked ok before but wasn't as engaging as the other FOX show pages. Now it looks great.

You can vote on photos in a gallery.
I know everyone is excited and gearing to go with the show, but could we wait for the actual show? It's coming soon, trust me, there be plenly of discussion. I know, I'm twisting my thumbs as well.
Could we wait for the actual show for what? Talking about promotional material that's released right now?
Dunno if this warrants its own thread, but apparently USA Today's Whitney Matheson (a huge Whedon fan) just watched her review copy of Dollhouse. She was not impressed.
That's good! More the merrier.
Agree with Whitney about the dialogue - but let's give it time to settle in. I suspect we'll find JW's love of language seeping through in unexpected places.
Playing Devil's advocate here, does a Whedon show have to be about his dialogue? I mean, other stuff is good without it, and Joss's stuff is certainly good regardless. I for one am happy if he is willing to step out of his comfort zone (that we've imposed on him) and try things a bit different. Cause different can still be good.

(oh goodness I hope his trademark dialogue shows up soon!)
Maybe just put in a laugh track instead.
I dunno, it felt like Topher's dialogue was very Jossesque. Maybe they just need to add more Y's to some words in the scripts. Or they could just edit them into the audio...
I have to say that I was more impressed by Dollhouse than I expected to be. Two thumbs up and there was some Whedonesque dialogue. In any case too much humor in this ep would've been out of place and people would be talking about Joss trying to shoehorn in the funny.
isn't that why Joss decided to write Hush? Because people said the one thing that made his shows so good was the dialogue. I wish people would stop saying they don't like it because it's not funny. It doesn't need to be!
My agreement with Whitney M. about the dialogue wasn't about it being "not funny". She used the phrase "distinct dialogue." To me that implies a certain precision with language, a certain clever use of words that does more than one thing: it advances the plot, expresses character, makes me smile, etc. It was that precision in the dialogue that I didn't pick up so much on with the first episode. But, I only watched it once, it's a whole new ball of wax and, as I say, I'm sure that sensitivity to words will be there - if it's scripted by Joss, Jane, Tim, how could it not be?
True, though I did find a bit of playfulness in the language; perhaps not as much as I expected, however.
Oh, I hope they kept "zombie slaves." Olivia Williams saying "zombie slaves" left a bigger impression on me than anything else from the original trailer.

At least Saje can blame his morning headache on the fanning-with-a-cricket-bat episode.
Don't forget that Olivia is going to be on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson this coming Tuesday. As far as I can tell, Dollhouse is her main promotional reason for being there, although I think she's a real-life friend of Craig's. I can't imagine where they'll get an audience with everyone watching the inauguration.
So. Much. Better.

Seriously, that was actually a great promo. I felt like I saw the potential there for this to be a Whedon show, and I don't really feel like I did before.

Oh, and that 2 second clip of Dichen Lachman shooting things made me love her so much.
The zombie slaves stuff and the hot chicks thing is entirely gone, for reference. They're still using a lot of stuff from "Echo" (including scenes) in promos as it explains stuff in a sellable (new word!) manner, but that episode is deleted (DVD please!).

I've watched the first episode, and here's my take - it's actually quite good. Some stuff was a little wonky I felt, but overall it hangs together and lays the template for a compelling week-to-week show. The thing about Dollhouse is it's a pretty crazy concept - personality replacement - and the thing I didn't realise until seeing it is how that plays in the shows favour. It's actually crazy. Anything can happen. And it does.

[ edited by gossi on 2009-01-17 12:23 ]
Just to heap more speculation on the speculation gossi, is it wonky in ways that we're likely to notice or wonky in ways that everyone's likely to notice ? I.e. do you think non-fans would come back for episode 2 ?

And it doesn't need to be a constant hilarity fest for me (though i'd be pretty surprised - and disappointed - if there was NO humour in the show) but the dialogue does need to sparkle somehow - like it or not, Joss has a reputation for dialogue that's out of the ordinary with a certain rhythm and linguistic playfulness to it, that's part of what people expect when they watch his stuff (it's something we see in everything he's done up to now, including Astonishing X-Men - which, in fairness, is maybe a reason for him to try something different, certainly for his own creative fulfillment). If it's all going to be A to B pedestrian plot forwarding then why sell 'Dollhouse' as "From the Creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer" ?

(and cricket bats are, indeed, ineffective fans as it turns out. Something to do with surface area I suspect but further testing might be called for ;)
Within the first 5 minutes there's two jokes. I've watched it twice now - I didn't even notice them the first time around. Additionally, Topher has interesting ways of stringing things together in terms of speech, and let's not forget - he's a pretty amoral character, which gives him an interesting point of view. In fact, I think that is what Dollhouse is about. Points of view. Everybody in that Dollhouse sees everything they're doing differently. Except the Actives, who don't remember what they see. I think the fun part of Dollhouse will be when shit starts to hit the fan (and probably the fans), as there's where your payback will be with the characters. What will they do? How do all these characters and plot lines connect together?

I actually think the pilot will appeal more to non-fans than some of the floating Whedon fans, if I'm honest. It takes a bit of getting used to that Eliza isn't, in fact, Faith, for example. That will put some of the people here off, as there's an adjustment period to it not being Buffy, Angel, Firefly, Dr Horrible etc. It's just a very different style of thing. Not everybody will like it, but I think it's got a lot of potential. Also, there's a *lot* of setup in the first episode for ongoing plot lines if you pay attention (in fact, I'd argue a little too much), so I don't think it's quite as stand alone as some might believe.

Also, you can tell Tim Minear has worked on this show.
I actually think the pilot will appeal more to non-fans than some of the floating Whedon fans, if I'm honest.

I'd say that's a good thing. This show will need non-fans to survive.

Any ads spotted since the American Idol-spot?
Ta gossi, that all sounds pretty good to me and more or less as i'd expect.

Something i've wondered for a while now is if maybe the months - and months and months and ... ;) - of speculation have just set us all up with expectations it's impossible to meet, through no-one's fault, just the passage of time and the anticipation that naturally comes with being a fan of The One True Purple. Given some of the reviews (and especially comments from people on here that've seen it) I now don't expect Dollhouse to explode out of the gate and set the world alight by the end of the first act - so long as I can see the seeds of what it'll become i'll be happy.
Saje, I'm just going to agree with everything you just said, which excuses me from having to do any actual writing. ;-)
By the way, the contrast between "Dr Horrible" and "Dollhouse" is absolutely massive. Dr Horrible is an incredibly accessible, mostly fun piece - Dollhouse is, well, dark. The first episode is not huge with the fun. But since Dr Horrible and The Dark Knight were competing together on Amazon this Christmas, it's clear light and dark can sell.

[ edited by gossi on 2009-01-17 13:38 ]
Dollhouse was just ok. Solid rather than spectacular. I have to see the next few episodes before I made a call on it.
Are the clips in this promo of Eliza as the city all from the intro sequence?
The intro sequence isn't completed yet (for press copies, anyway) - currently the titles are a black screen and the word "TITLES" for 30 seconds. I think the city scape goes at the end of the titles once it's done, with actiony bits introducing the cast.
Wasn't the intro sequence completed, like, in October?
To those who've seen Dollhouse episode one: What Verse episode/episodes would you use to best describe it? If any. Thanks.
wiesengrund, apparently not! It's missing off the screener DVDs. I suppose they could be jigging with it still, given the changing focus of the show. Also of note - I don't think the score is completed yet, and there's at least one spot which is jarringly roughly edited so it's not done tinkering with yet. The reviewers all seem to have forgotten to mention it's not the final version.

beckyboo, I would pitch it thematically as a cross between Angel season two (there's an episode I have in mind, but don't want to say as it gives something away - but think slightly sinister), Buffy season four ("Who Are You?" - Faith as Buffy) and Angel's fifth season (working inside Wolfram and Hart).
It exceeded my expectations. I thought it may have been the best Joss pilot as far as getting going quickly and having a chance for snaring the average person. I really don't feel like I can or should compare it to previous eps of previous shows. It definitely feels like its own thing and it feels like there is a whole Dollverse out there to be explored.

Although if you insist, I guess gossi's combo is the way to describe it.

[ edited by zeitgeist on 2009-01-17 17:59 ]
I will stress again - it isn't like any of Joss's previous stuff, those are just thematic ties.

Also, I still think FOX should just put the damn thing online in a few weeks for, say, a day. Or, hell, organise an invite only Whedonesque member screening. Anything to get people talking.
Okay, how many people have already seen this? You're making me sad.

Also, you can tell Tim Minear has worked on this show.

Gossi, what do you see that smacks of Minear exactly?

And to the PTB - yes, please let Whedonesque members screen Dollhouse.
I am amazed by the restraint the people have that have gotten a screener. No leak 4 weeks before the premiere? Amazing.

Or, Fox has gone to enormous lengths to make the screeners secure. I don't know how advanced watermarking and stuff has become.
What Verse episode/episodes would you use to best describe it?

Old school Angel more than anything in terms of visualness. It's closer to City Of than anything else.
I thought the first season of Angel looked very cold and dark and blue. Not much color. I prefer the colors of Buffy seasons 5 and 6, they were more bright.

Firefly was the best visually though. What with the lighting and the shaky cams and the special-effects-kind-of-lighting (grainy blue, grainy green etc.).
I don't think Dollhouse was cold, dark, or blue. It was actually quite colorful, but not in a stylized and overdone way. It reminded me of Alias at times.
"darn I can't remember if it was philosophy or psychology. One of those pseudo-'sciences'. ;) "

Ooh controversial. I'll leave any psychologists around here to defend their pseudo-science. But philosophy isn't science at all and doesn't pretend to be. It's as much pseudo-science as law is

Not to get too off topic, but since I have a minor in Philosophy I had to point out that philosophy is considered to be the father of all sciences.

I would argue that a pseudo-science or fake science is where you do not follow scientific method and come up with answer before you have any data on the subject. I will not give examples as it might upset some people. So while science is within the boundaries of Philosophy, Philosophy covers a much larger area than science because it can ask the unknowable.

Philosophy just doesn't get much respect anymore, but without it we would probably not have ever gotten out of the Dark Ages and started asking about why things work the way they do.

To bring it back on topic though, Joss is very Philosophical in his writing and always asks "What if?". Then he tries to make the laws of his universe explain why it is that way.
It is one of the reasons I like his writing so much.
And its most basic form, the word science means the pursuit of knowledge. I've never liked the term fake science because in reality all science is real, just categorized into different areas.
Fake/Pseudo science does exist.
It would be when someone knows that they are reporting the opposite of what the facts tell them in order to deceive or manipulate someone or even themselves. They are claiming it is science when they know it is not.

Politicians and lawyers use Pseudo science all the time and usually then back up their claim with statistics, and as we all know there are lies, damned lies, and statistics. :)

I believe Joss has even used this as a plot device a few times when the public finds out about vampires/demons/reavers and the people in charge try to cover it up with fake science.
Fake/Pseudo science does exist.

Yes I've seen Fringe.
The dictionary definition of science is remarkably broad but in the widely accepted sense of the word not all pursuits of knowledge are science since scientific knowledge is accrued through a particular set of methods based on examining the world around us (in idealised form some or all of: generating hypotheses and performing experiments to test them, repeating experiments to ensure the results are real, making predictions based on those results, testing those predictions with further experiments, adjusting/abandoning theories based on new evidence etc.).

I'd say philosophy isn't science because it's not empirical i.e. something can disagree with reality or even be untestable in principle and yet be a perfectly valid topic for philosophy (not so for science, if something's untestable/unfalsifiable in principle then it's scientifically meaningless which is why - just to throw the cat amongst the pigeons with a for instance ;) - intelligent design isn't science). That's not to say philosophy is lesser, just different.

(and pseudo-science is just an assertion or set of assertions about the world that claim to have been arrived at by employing the scientific method but actually weren't, either through incompetence or fraud - I disagree that it necessarily involves someone "reporting the opposite of what the facts tell them" since they might think they're using the scientific method but be wrong)

Much as i'm desperate to see Dollhouse BTW, I think i'd rather wait and see the totally finished product.
I sent this promo vid to 2 non-Whedonesque friends & got great responses: "Awesome!" and "I'll set my Tivo."

Nice to see it appealing to a non-fan audience.

Let's be the force behind Dollhouse's popularity by using our online presences & tools to drive viral interest... rather than bemoaning Fox's lackluster promotion. Be the solution!
Saje, I was referring to the latin base of the word scientia which means knowledge. As I said, at its most basic form science is about the pursuit of knowledge. Scientific knowledge existed before the 7 steps of the Scientific Method were devised and empirical science is one of those subcategories I was referring to. People in everyday life say 'science' when they are specifically referring to 'empirical science' - nowadays the kneejerk reaction is to only call empirical science the real science. I think that shows an incomplete understanding of what science really is.

As you say, the word has a much broader meaning than just that limited definition. If you look up 'science' in Merriam Webster, one of the examples given is the "science of theology" - now that too sounds like a doozy but it's real. Science at its heart is about pursuing knowledge, truth, understanding of how the world works - both the natural and the human world. Social sciences, natural sciences, and so on. Call biology and chemistry empirical sciences because that's true, but don't call them 'real' science. That suggests that all other sciences are somehow less because they may not be as readily quantifiable through the Scientific Method.

When did the Scientific Method become the end all, be all of the word that predated that methodology? Is the only true knowledge what can be quantified through those 7 steps? Truth and knowledge only exist if you can form a hypothesis and test it?

As for the phrase fake science, I was (perhaps not clearly enough) objecting to when people call psychology a fake science. Now with Dollhouse, I think I'd rather say that they've created fictional science. An understanding of psychology and biology that has been created for fictional purposes.
Yep, i'm aware of the root of the word but many words have strict definitions (and especially etymologies) that are completely divorced from what they now mean in common usage. Calling any "knowledge" science is broadening the meaning to an extent that imparts less information, not more, it's not useful. We already have a word that clearly and unambiguously denotes "knowledge" and that's, well, "knowledge" ;). Science on the other hand (in common usage) connotes the sort of empirical methodology/body of knowledge I (and, i'd submit, most people) mean when I/they say 'science'.

(theology for instance, often features assertions that we don't even know are knowledge in the strict philosophical sense - i.e. a justified true belief - so why use a word that means knowledge to describe it ? One aspect of art is a body of knowledge, do we call art a science ?)

Apart from that, I haven't called social science less 'real' as a science, the word I used was 'soft' because a lot of psychology (up to now) has been dependent on the subjects themselves reporting their ideas etc. which, in my view, makes the knowledge gained less reliable (that's changing BTW, though there're sometimes issues with experiments etc. fMRI scanning - assuming the initial assumptions made about it are valid - is making psychology a 'harder' science, basing it more on the state of the world rather than someone's subjective impressions of the world).

edited for some grammar. T'was buggin' me so it was ;).

[ edited by Saje on 2009-01-17 23:13 ]
So, like, I write for Blogcritics Magazine. They constantly offer numerous review copies of numerous things in numerous mediums to their writers. Somebody needs to hook them up with Dollhouse. I mean, seriously, we've been offered a Lie to Me screener for review but no Dollhouse. Come on. Make it happen, FOX.
Philosophy just doesn't get much respect anymore, but without it we would probably not have ever gotten out of the Dark Ages and started asking about why things work the way they do.

Dark Ages for Europe, maybe. The Middle East and China were doing quite well. Besides, philosophy started with the Greeks, and they didn't do well at all (Alexander doesn't count as a Greek, and he just destroyed a superior civilization rather than creating improvements).

I'm a historian, and I'm far from unbiased, but I cannot stand philosophy (those Greek guys give me a headache). Give me the Secret History of the Mongols, or the Shahnameh, or the Epic of Gilgamesh any day over Plato or Aristotle. The reason I called it and psych a pseudo science was primarily in jest, but they don't use real evidence as the basis of their writings.
Heck, UnpluggedCrazy, I'VE got a Lie to Me screener! (Yay, Best Buy!)
The reason I called it and psych a pseudo science was primarily in jest, but they don't use real evidence as the basis of their writings.

What constitutes real evidence to a historian then ?
Primary documents (that often have to be taken with a grain of salt), archeological finds, artifacts, art, clothing etc. Sometimes interpretation of others of said evidence, but barely...

[ edited by SteppeMerc on 2009-01-17 22:22 ]

[ edited by SteppeMerc on 2009-01-17 22:23 ]
Why do you consider that superior to the evidence that psychology uses ?

(i'm ignoring philosophy, it's not a science, let alone a pseudo-science)
Whoa, did all of Whedonesque get a screener? :P

Love hearing all of the different impressions of the show.
Maybe it's only the psychology class that I had, Social Psych. But the whole class seemed to be based on broad assumptions gleamed from very small scale experimentation on similar people. I think that the culture and enviornment of a person is far more important than the broad rules outlined in that course about how apparently all groups of people groups behave, especially when the people experimented on seem to be from a similar age and culture group. The whole class was one seemingly made up claim after the other. I really wish I could remember some of the ridiculous notions espoused in the class, but I can't.

Perhaps other aspects of psychology arrives at conclusions from better documentation, and if that is so, I apologize.

edit: Ah, I remember one about the claim that violent media causes violence. A claim I find quite laughable, really, considering the continual state of war most of humanity found itself in most periods of history.

[ edited by SteppeMerc on 2009-01-17 22:44 ]
There's no need to apologise, IANAPsychologist ;).

Sounds to me though like you were exposed to bad science and you get that in all subjects. And maybe because psychology tends to be about people and how and why we act as we do it's also (arguably) more open to political agendas, to presenting people in a certain light irrespective of the actual truth of the matter.

But in theory things like picking sufficiently randomised samples (of sufficient size), double blind experiments, controlling for variables, repeatability, predictive/explanatory power etc. are all a part of the subject, just as they are with other sciences. So with the best will in the world SteppeMerc, your position is a bit like saying "All historical evidence is worthless" because there're people like e.g. David Irving that cherry pick from it to suit their own agenda.

Re: 'TV violence causes real violence' I can't help but wonder if you either only remember part of what you were taught OR you were taught badly OR you were taught well but from bad studies (all too possible unfortunately) since it seems like any psychology study worth its salt would make clear that it found a correlation between consumption of TV/film violence and violent behaviour, which is a far cry from causation (that's one of the problems I have with the subject in fact - some of its conclusions seem to me to be more correlative than causative) - if the study claimed TV/film violence was the sole cause of violence then it's clearly patent nonsense since, as you say, we were violent before TV/film (but I doubt it was making that claim). Even if so though, again, that's just a bad study rather than a fundamental flaw in the entire subject I reckon.

(and the fact that we were violent long before TV/film came along isn't a counter argument to the claim that TV/film violence is one cause of real violence. That'd be like saying air crashes aren't one cause of deaths because people were dying long before there were aircraft ;)
Excellent points all, and I especially loved the last one. I think I may have to retract my statements against psychology, and place the blame on my incompetent professor. She was indeed far too into presenting people in a good light, spending one class arguing that 'everyone is good', an argument I found laughable (and argued against a great deal). I don't even want to know where she came up with evidence to support that claim, or what it had to do with what we were supposed to be learning. Besides, any Joss fan knows everyone is gray.

[ edited by SteppeMerc on 2009-01-17 23:14 ]

[ edited by SteppeMerc on 2009-01-17 23:15 ]
Those trains do have a tendency to go their own way. Getting back on topic I will say that the show does face two hurdles when it comes to the online fandom.

1) After years in the wilderness, there will be fans who will be disappointed in what they see.
2) The real proof of the pudding will be when we see the later episodes where Fox let Joss get on with it rather than interfere. Cause 'Ghost' did feel Joss-lite. And that's going to be a very wanky source of debate come February 13th. That and the sexiness of the show.

I will say that Joss and co did a wonderful job casting Dichen Lachman and Fran Kranz. Huge potential there with those actors. I would need to see more of Olivia and Harry's characters before I can make a reasonable guess on the impact they will have on the fandom. And it's a good sign that I didn't think "Faith" or "Fred" whenever I saw Eliza or Amy on screen.
SteppeMerc, as a former psychology student I would say that the majority of specialized psychology (i.e. abnormal psychology or developmental psychology) is based on observations of general trends related to large populations. General psychology classes serve merely as groundwork to cover what some observations are.

Whether observations are culled from studying similar groups of people or diverse groups of people, there are REAL observations that hold true.

While of course, each individual is different, for example psychologists can very much say that in a general sense, boys grow up in a certain schema that perpetuates certain things like what kinds of toys boys are expected to like versus how girls grow up, and what girls like. The study of how people develop from children to adults is a large part of developmental psychology - and studying where the deviations occur goes a long way in studying certain behaviors, such as lying.

Many scholarly psychology studies are focused on large groups of people, and study one particular thing. One study I recall specifically studied female criminal offenders, and by studying the female prison population, researchers were able to determine that female offenders generally prefer less confrontational methods of crime against others, and that money was the highest motivation for committing crime.

So now, when police study a crime scene, they can use psychological observations of victimology (what type of victim is it?) and observations of the perpetrator who may have chosen this particular type of victim, and have groundwork for what type of person may have committed this crime.

As in all science, mere observation does not equal fact or absolute truth. A broken clock is right twice a day, but it's a still broken clock. Likewise, psychology's observations can be applied with a general correctness, but there are always individuals who do not conform. We're talking about people, not gravity.

As far as primary documentation, history is not quite like psychology. You can't actively perform experiments in history. And because psychology is very much a progression of thought and observations throughout the years, what was said in 1900 can be regarded as a primary document in the technical sense (a document from history chronicling evidence) it only goes so far to confirm that a scientist in 1900 did say what the document claims. It does NOT, however, give any credence to the current schools of thought or the advancements made in modern psychology.

I defend psychology because I believe it has merits and it is extremely helpful in studying behavior.
Thanks! I love early Angel and the Dark Faith episodes. And even Alias. Yeah I do realize that it's something totally different from all other Whedon stuff. I just wanted something to compare for a couple fans in a bid to persuade them to watch Dollhouse. They are Buffyverse fans but they only kind of liked Firefly/Dr Horrible so I'm trying to find a way to get them to watch Dollhouse. They have heard all the gossip and think Fox has ruined the Joss who created Buffy. This comparison may be able to get them to watch. So thanks again.
Fox ruined the Joss who created Buffy? Ha! I've never heard that kind of defense tactic before...most people who don't want to watch (insert Joss work here) say they wouldn't like it because it's too different from (insert other Joss work here) but to say they wouldn't like it because JOSS himself was changed or manipulated by FOX.

Joss is his own man, and while I get that studios and networks have their own ideas of what will work or what won't work, the writers and creators can shop their ideas to whoever and choose to retool the work if no one is interested, or they can go entirely off grid and do it themselves. Joss said in the Dr. Horrible special features that they shopped the idea to different studios and such and they all wanted to roll it out in 18 months, and Joss & Co. simply decided they didn't want to do that and made it free for the internet.

So it can be done, and it can preserve creativity...but television shows can't be done like that (too much money involved), not unless Joss decides to own his own network.

I think the Joss that created Buffy is vastly different than the Joss who made Dollhouse because Firefly was such a joyful yet heartbreaking thing for everyone involved. Certainly, we can't stay the same.
I saw the original promo they released (I can't remember how long ago that was), but after I pretty much avoided all press, any kind of video (didn't even wanna see cast talking about their characters), and definitely spoilers. I watched this and it's made me want the show now. Right now. Fantastic promo.
How did so many whedonesquers get access to Dollhouse screeners? Not only am I jealous, but also rather curious!

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