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June 12 2009

IGN reports Fazekas and Butters took the slots on Dollhouse vacated by Craft and Fain. "Craft and Fain, another writing duo, left Dollhouse at the end of Season 1 to join Lie to Me, where they will be reunited with new showrunner Shawn Ryan,creator of The Shield. Craft and Fain worked on The Shield after their stint on Whedon's Angel."

Hmm... That is very surprising, if it's true. I don't know why anyone would want to leave such an amazing show for... well, such a the-opposite-of-amazing show.
As evidenced by the quote provided, which indicates that they already left for Lie to Me, it makes no sense for the post title to say they are "to leave". (I guess this news never actually made it into a post of its own when it actually happened?)

[ edited by The One True b!X on 2009-06-12 07:19 ]
Does the post title link to a self-redirect for anyone else?
Yes, the link is currently busted.
This is too confusing. And yup the link goes nowhere fast.
I found the link and added it in.
Well, Fazekas and Butters are the creators of "Reaper," so this could be interesting -- maybe they'll get Ray Wise to play an Active for people with *really* unusual desires :)
Thanks Simon. Sorry about that.
Oh! Or, or, what if Ray Wise played one of the higher ups that Adelle answers to? Like, maybe he's the one who hung up on her in that one episode. :)
Rewrote the link title to add the "news" part. Which was, so far as I can tell, that the new writers are stepping into the shoes of the two departed writers. Seems to be not much more than a confirmation of Maurisa's previously-linked tweet.

Back in the office already, Simon? ;-)
Seems to be not much more than a confirmation of Maurisa's previously-linked tweet.

Yeah, even the article explains it was them following up with 20th to confirm said tweet.
Back in the office already, Simon? ;-)


Just passing :). I wonder if we could implant mod memories into other people. There could be a tv show based around that idea.
(I guess this news never actually made it into a post of its own when it actually happened?)

You mean Craft & Fain leaving? We didn't know about that back then, afaik. Some people did wonder why Craft & Fain showed up as consulting producers at he last few eps of "Lie to Me" S1, but it was never said that they left "Dollhouse" in case of renewal.
I wonder if we could implant mod memories into other people.

I'm sure we could get QuoterGal to fire up Printy the Chair.
I love the idea of Ray Wise on Dollhouse! I'm looking forward to seeing what Fazekas & Butters bring to the show. They have a knack for good characters and snappy dialogue. Should be fun.
cko, I second that!

I loved Fazekas's and Butters's work on Reaper! I think having them on Dollhouse would be great! (and Ray Wise won't hurt, either).
This is interesting. I preferred Grey Hour to the rest of the first five episodes, but then Echoes to me was the worst of the ones from MotS onwards. Of course, I'm only basing this on a very small sample of their work, but maybe that means Craft and Fain are more suited to the procedural side of TV writing? Who knows.
I never saw any Reaper but I loved 'The Shield'. Weren't Craft and Fain showrunners on Dollhouse at one time? or did I just dream that up.

ETA punctuation!!

[ edited by The Do That Girl on 2009-06-12 10:44 ]
Hang on, you say "took the slots" but Craft and Fain were the showrunners, will Fazekas and Butters be taking that role?
Huh. I love Lie to Me, but wonder how this will affect the show, which answered many questions in its last couple of episodes. Actually, the only real question remaining is whether Cal and Gillian will connect.

Well, this could be good for both shows.
Craft & Fain leaving isn't great news. But having them and Ryan on Lie to Me, means I'll have to start watching that now.
I have the feeling I'm repeating myself to death here, but Craft & Fain's LTM-episode in S1 ("Blinded", 1x12) was very very awesome, and easily my favorite of the season. They've done good there even without Ryan, so Season 2 might very well be cool throughout.
Loved loved loved loved Reaper...so very sad to see it go, but Im pumped that these two are joining the DH. The writing on Reaper was one of the things I loved about it so yay for that.
I hope this doesn't come off as overly-snarky, but is anyone else surprised that Shawn Ryan has done so well? His Angel eps are among the half-dozen that I have no interest in ever seeing again. Of course, I've never seen his more recent work, so maybe the concept just wasn't right for his style. I just never would have guessed he'd be behind multiple sucessful shows while people like Minear end up visiting cancelled-land on a sadly regular basis. Sorry for getting off-topic.
I find Craft and Fain to be hit or miss writers. To be honest, I didn't love either Gray Hour or Echoes. But Soulless and Underneath are both in my top 10 Angel episodes so I reckon they would have written some great Dollhouse episodes if they'd stuck around. I'm sorry to see them go but I'm really glad there are some new writers coming in
I never quite got why people liked Reaper so much. I've seen the odd episode and it stroke me as bland, but that could be just because it works better in sequence or because I never paid much attention.
Guys, we need to remember that episodes are broken and structured by commitee. Barring luminaries such as Whedon, Espenson, and Minear, everyone else is assigned an episode, and much of that episode has been planned out in "the room". Then Whedon/Lindelof/Moore/Ball/Fuller/Minear/Cuse/Abrams etc will probably have taken a final pass before it goes to production. Sometimes they'll re-write the whole damned thing and credit still resides with the assigned writer.

It's very difficult to judge these guys in fits and starts. Joss would most certainly have had a huge hand in the episodes Craft and Fain wrote. So remember that when criticising them.

That they are leaving may be because the chemistry in the room wasn't right, or it could be Joss was delighted with their work, but they wanted to move on. Who knows? Just remember that only after you've seen a writer stick around for a long time, or work on some very key episodes, can you be sure they are key contributors to the show. Everything else is down to the showrunners. I mean, who hear believes Ty King was the creative mastermind behind "Passion"?
That they are leaving may be because the chemistry in the room wasn't right, or it could be Joss was delighted with their work, but they wanted to move on. Who knows? Just remember that only after you've seen a writer stick around for a long time, or work on some very key episodes, can you be sure they are key contributors to the show. Everything else is down to the showrunners.

Who happen to be Craft & Fain for Season 1? :)

I'm thinking they are under a 20th Century Fox Television deal (like most of the ME-producers are) and after season 1 wrapped they got an offer to join LTM immediately. Instead of waiting for months unemployed for miraculous and not very likely pickup for Dollhouse season 2, they probably chose the now-job of joining LTM (which, to be clear, always looked more promising for a second season than Dollhouse). I probably would have done the same. There's bills to be paid.
I think wiesengrund's explanation is likely.
Are Fazekas and Butters going to be showrunners for Dollhouse season 2?
Nothing has been said re: showrunner till now, I think.
Shawn Ryan happens to have created the second best television show of all time. (The first being a little thing called BUFFY ...)

Seriously, if you're interested at all in Shawn's work, start Netflixing THE SHIELD. You will not regret it.
Am I the only one who keeps flashing on what would inevitably happen were a certain South Park character take a showrunner position on the Dollhouse writing staff?
I'm still in mourning for Reaper.
I think wiesengrund's explanation is likely.


Makes sense to me. Dollhouse was "made" first, before F&C credits started showing up on LTM. Better to take a sure thing than a "hope against hope" when it comes to employment.
Better to take a sure thing than a "hope against hope" when it comes to employment.

OMG, I'm doing it wrong.
Whedon/Lindelof/Moore/Ball/Fuller/Minear/Cuse/Abrams

1st thought: I love every one of those people!

2nd thought: I watch way too much tv. :)
I concur, you watch way too much tv :)

[ edited by PaulfromSunnydale on 2009-06-12 19:08 ]
Weisengrund,

Didn't realise they were showrunners. Thanks for the correction.

[ edited by Andy Dufresne on 2009-06-12 20:03 ]
Phew! I only know 5/8, so I'm not at the "limit" yet. ;)

LOL bix. Somehow I don't think you're doing it that wrong. It may even be a case of "so wrong it's right". :)
I don't think being unemployed for this long is doing it right in any sense of the phrase.
Phew! I only know 5/8, so I'm not at the "limit" yet. ;)

Just a guess at the ones you might be missing: Alan Ball - Six Feet Under. Ron Moore - BSG/Caprica. Brian Fuller - Wonderfalls/Dead Like Me/Pushing Daisies. Is that the 3? :)
Don't forget True Blood for Alan Ball and DS9 for RDM.
Just a guess at the ones you might be missing: Alan Ball - Six Feet Under. Ron Moore - BSG/Caprica. Brian Fuller - Wonderfalls/Dead Like Me/Pushing Daisies. Is that the 3? :)

Or are Lindelof and Cuse among them? Those are the ones I don't know (though I think I've heard Lindelof name sometime, is he from Lost?)
No peacemonger, if Butters the character became the showrunner for Dollhouse my brain would probably explode with the hilarity that would inevitably ensue for one episode. After one, my head would probably then implode in some sort of weird time reversal caused by hilarity turning into annoyance.

[ edited by azzers on 2009-06-12 23:15 ]
Actually, I don't know these people:

Lindelof
Fuller
Cuse

Granted, I know Ball & Moore recently (as of this year), but I still <3 them now. Abrams is okay. And, of course, the other 2 I can't live happily watching television without. ;)
Tycho:

I think you're probably not being snarky at all. Angel was a serial show set in Whedon's universe. It could be that Ryan simply couldn't write in Whedon's universe because he had his own ideas and liked to to live in them instead. If you look at the shows Ryan has gone on to be a part of, there is almost nothing "fantastic" about them. It could be that he has a sharp mind for the "real world" and not nearly as sharp a mind for selling the world that came out of Joss's head. It's just not what he's good at.

I'm not sure how many people have read Jane Espensen's writers blog (everyone?) but one part of what she talks about in being a writer is being able to write using the voice that someone else has given you. However that's an entirely different skill than being able to write the voice that you created yourself.
Groo & Kork - Lindelof & Cuse are indeed on Lost. They're the ones that run the show on a day to day basis, it seems. Don't know how involved Abrams actually is. (K - I only know Moore as of the past month, made it all the way through BSG in about 2.5 weeks, it was exhausting, but I couldn't stop myself) :)

Azzers - That makes a lot of sense. From what little I know of Ryans work, it does seem to be of a more realistic vein. I think the Shield may be one of my next shows to try. We had an exercise in one of my college classes where we had to write something in someone else's style, I did not do so well on that project. It is a wholely different muscle than using your own voice.
Ha, I guessed correctly!

Groo & Kork - Lindelof & Cuse are indeed on Lost.


Thought so about Lindelof. Hadn't heard Cuse's name before.

Part of what she talks about in being a writer is being able to write using the voice that someone else has given you. However that's an entirely different skill than being able to write the voice that you created yourself.
Which is why I think a writers room full of showrunners might not work so very well. Anyway, that aspect completely ignored my dream writers room would be: Whedom/Minear/Greenwalt/Sorkin/Ball/Hurrwitz/who-ever runs Dexter & Moffat.
Did Craft & Fain do Underneath in Angel season 5? I think they did and it was one of my favorites. They have a way in Angel that really struck a cord with who the characters were and who they wanted to be. I still remember Angel's speech to a wounded Gunn. Anyways this is good news, more new blood for the Whedonverse and the people responsible for The Shield are back together which was an amazing series. I tried Reaper but could not get into it, I appreciate some camp but I felt like I was drowning in it. Better start catching up on LTM now.
Lindelof and Cuse are the primary creative voice of Lost. It's their baby and has been since about a third of the way through Season 1.

Abrams co-created the show with Lindelof (they were paired by the studio, Jeffrey Lieber also shares creator credit, but he basically wrote an "island/shipwreck" script that was tossed long before Lost as we know it was made)but Abrams himself describes his contribution to the show as "negligible". He wrote a season 2 episode I believe, but has already written more Fringe than Lost.
Ouh, dream writers rooms, I'm going to bite. Ignoring the fact that Sorkin probably doesn't play well with others:

The ME stall with (at least):
Whedon, Minear, Espenson, Edlund and Goddard

And I'd add:
Sorkin, B.K. Vaughan, Ryan, J.M. Straczynski, Diablo Cody and Moffat.

ETA: forgot Alan Ball!

[ edited by GVH on 2009-06-13 00:23 ]
Yeah Sorkin has researchers. He breaks the stories in the room, but he writes alone. To his eternal credit, he rotates the researchers to ensure they get a writing credit a few times a season (usually "story by")
Whedom/Minear/Greenwalt/Sorkin/Ball/Hurrwitz/who-ever runs Dexter & Moffat.

Doesn't matter what that show is, I would watch it religiously. Mork & Mindy remake, After-After-MASH, I honestly don't care. Throw some Goddard & BKV in there too and it will be the greatest thing ever. :)
I won't spam Reaper but we are trying to save that show, check reaperdmv.com. Hoping Whedonites here have sympathy, understanding, and advice for SOS campaigns, successful and otherwise. All help gratefully accepted.

We've heard from Tara Butters that she and Michele have in their contract to consult on Reaper if it by a miracle continues; either way, I can't wait to see them work their magic on Dollhouse.
I'm probably forgetting many, many writers, but my dream writing staff would be Joss Whedon, Tim Minear, Jane Espenson, Steven Moffat, Darin Morgan, Vince Gilligan.

And probably some of the other writers from Buffy and Angel. I'm not as familiar with which writer wrote specific episodes though.

[ edited by JossIzBoss on 2009-06-13 05:40 ]
I'm pretty happy w/ the writing room at DH as it is now--it's a good mix of new talent (malleable voices), comedic and dramatic and even some musical talent (Jed Whedon started out as a composer!), but if I had my dream Whedon-verse writer's room, I'd throw in Drew Goddard and (sigh) Ben Edlund.
So Joss is not the showrunner?
I remember reading that Craft and Fain were going to showrun it, but I thought it was false. Well, I suppose I can't imagine a Whedon baby without him showrunning.

I'm kinda lost, who remains with the show, and who left?
I'm always interested in that kind of info, but I can't find it in Wikipedia or IMDB, and I'd love to know who showrun my favorite tv shows, or who are at the writers room... The only ones I know are (to some extent) from Buffy or LOST, but I don't know the internal changes when anyone leaves a show.

[ edited by Angel TheVampire on 2009-06-13 16:47 ]
Dollverse mentioned Tim Minear, Tracy Bellomo, and Andrew Chambliss as returning for Season 2. Maurissa Tancharoen (do we know if she keeps it as her pen name or uses Whedon now?) and Jed Whedon also seem to be back.

Joss wasn't the showrunner on Season 1, Craft and Fain were. Although he seems as usual incredibly involved in the creative direction, and as an outside I have no real understanding of his actual role in production versus theirs.
I think I've gotten all my news about which writers are in the room this season from Maurissa on Twitter, heh. I think the Bellomo/Chambliss news actually came from her answering someone's tweet about them.
It seems to me that Joss was still the big boss, and the main creative driving force, but had intended for other showrunners to do the absolute grind so he could multi task on other things. I've no doubt that he was always going to be majorly involved, but he probably wanted to avoid the kind of greulling schedule he was afflicted with previously. Hence other show-runners.

With the bumpy start, and the miraculous renewal, I think he's had to work on this much harder than he imagined.

[ edited by Andy Dufresne on 2009-06-13 23:19 ]
Add Rob Thomas of Veronica Mars to the list of creators who deserve more appreciation and less cancellation.
Ah, yes! Rob Thomas. I'll add him to my dreamlist upthread as well.
I'm kinda lost, who remains with the show, and who left?
I'm always interested in that kind of info, but I can't find it in Wikipedia or IMDB, and I'd love to know who showrun my favorite tv shows, or who are at the writers room... The only ones I know are (to some extent) from Buffy or LOST, but I don't know the internal changes when anyone leaves a show.


Maybe this can help.
That's what I need, not just a list, but to know when they left.
Thank you!

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