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September 05 2009

(SPOILER) Dollhouse on Popular Mechanics list. Dollhouse among list of six shows that Popular Mechanics are looking forward to in the coming tv season.

You might want to add a spoiler tag to this entry since that video promo for the new season is kind of telling in regards to Echo and Whiskey. But otherwise, that is awesome. It was the first time I'd seen that preview and now I'm more excited than ever. Hee!
It's not often I come across a post that has everything I'm looking forward to on. This season in sci-fi looks so very juicy. I'm expecting quite a lot from Fringe since that ended with a bang, and I'm just hoping it delivers. I just know Dollhouse will, so I've got no fear there.
I am kinda embarrassed to say this, but Heroes actually 'looks' like it might be interesting this season for a change.
Ok added the spoiler tag didn't watch the video as I was busy when I found the list on digg.
This surprises me somewhat, given that Dollhouse has a pretty strong anti-science bent. I mean, yes, the 'evil science' in the show doesn't actually exist, but there's still snippets of dialogue that force me to suppress my gag reflex.

It definitely plays into the 'some things man was not meant to know' mentality of early sci-fi.
I will so buy the issue with the diagrams to build my own printy chair.
The fact that some characters might express a "some things man was not meant to know" opinion doesn't necessarily mean the show is taking an anti-science bent.
I'd find that more convincing if the main representative of science on the show wasn't cowardly, amoral, arrogant and, to a first approximation, incompetent (and also if we saw more good uses of the technology). That said, just as there's no obligation to portray e.g. lesbians as entirely good the show also doesn't have to portray scientists that way (and Topher is no worse in many ways than Adelle), if you're going to represent science at all then it must be as an enterprise pursued by people, not flawless paragons of rational thought.

I just wish his point of view was presented more coherently (as it is in 'Echo' for instance) cos right now he strikes me as a bit of a straw-man whose world-view is clearly not being presented as as worthwhile or well thought out as e.g. Echo's or Boyd's ([ETA:] even though neither of them present anything remotely like a rational argument for thinking/feeling what they think/feel[/ETA]).

And yay, promos are appearing - I didn't watch it but its existence is exciting ;).

[ edited by Saje on 2009-09-06 09:16 ]
It isn't a promo, it's the iTunes sneak peek, but the version where someone filmed their computer screen while watching it.
I don't think it's anti science. I think it's anti controlling people with technology.

After all, it's technology that possibly saves some people in the end, too. But it's something created or discovered by the monster the Dollhouse made (Alpha), and it somehow ends up in the hands of the person they spend an awful lot of time and effort to use, control, and keep nice and docile (Echo). I think it's more about what people do with the the technology and the consequences of using it arrogantly, as Topher definitely does.
I'm not sure i'd characterise it as anti-science but i'd say the scientific perspective isn't represented particularly positively and the premise is basically saying "Science can't explain us, there's more to people than that". Sure it's about the dangers of arrogantly applying technology but the "materialism is wrong/incomplete" idea is a viewpoint expressed by the people we're surely meant to believe (Echo, Boyd, Ballard etc.) and, unlike with the rest of the show's themes, there's very little balance since the materialist perspective (or rather a barely coherent straw-man version of it) is (mis-)represented by Topher.

Maybe if/when we see some more explicit examples of the technology's positive aspects or maybe if we see Echo/Boyd/Ballard's moral authority undercut somewhat then it'll feel more even handed (though as I say, it's fiction, it doesn't have to be balanced or big 'T' truthful so maybe we never will). Right now it doesn't come across as, for instance, Boyd has his opinion and Topher has his, it comes across as Topher is an arrogant, immature man-child who's very often wrong whereas Boyd is a calm, dignified, decent man who's often seen to be right - there's a definite bias there cos who're you gonna believe ?

It isn't a promo, it's the iTunes sneak peek, but the version where someone filmed their computer screen while watching it.

Fair enough, as I say I didn't watch it, I was just going by what jiggyfly said upthread.

So about three weeks before airing and still no promo, is that normal ? Are you US viewers seeing promos for the other shows that start that week ('House', 'Castle', 'Numb3rs' etc.) ? Cos I have a hamper of picnic all packed and ready to go.
Promos for the other shows have been running, online and on the air, for weeks. It seems pretty certain that on air promos won't come until closer, because we pretty much expect a relatively low ad buy for Dollhouse. (But that still doesn't explain, satisfactorily, the lack of any promos available online, except for a single preview that's locked into iTunes and DRM'd.)
Well, i'm trying to adopt a policy of not worrying about advertising/ratings etc. this season but if I weren't I wouldn't exactly be reassured by that news. Still, I guess I wasn't really expecting a huge push for new viewers, the Foxes seem to be gambling on either stability and a long tail or a slow build from the core audience.

And besides, it's always handy to have someone to blame once the dust settles ;).
"Very ingenious and scientific. The problem with science is that it can be perverted." - The Prisoner (ep. Schizoid Man)

"It again shows McGoohan's great respect and sympathy for men of science, and his scorn for the manipulation and perversion of that science." - The Official Prisoner Companion (commenting on ep. The General)
I've been seeing Fringe ads for months. Glee, Lie To Me and House for awhile, even So You Think You Can Dance. It'd be nice to see something. Maybe next week...
Saje, I'm not especially bugged about the lack of on-air promotion so far. But the fact that they aren't providing anything online in a form that can gain, for example, social networking traction, is a pretty glaring fail in my book. (Non-embeddable/shareable DRM'd iTunes sneak peeks don't count.) If there's going to be a low spend on regular ads, not providing us with material to do some promotion for them online seems pretty dumb. Especially when all of the shows they are spending money on also have tons of freely-shareable online promotion at the same time.
Okay, that whole "The ultimate fate of the series is up to you..." pisses me off a bit. This is appearing in "Popular Mechanics" - not the biggest demographic of readers, I'm sure. It comes off a little like the "geeks" are to blame if it doesn't fly. Why is it up to us to do FOX's job?

"Dollhouse" needs a bigger, more generalized audience in order to get us more episodes and that's only going to have a chance with: 1. great episodes and 2. some FOX energy put behind the promotion. I'm sure Joss and Co. are holding up their end but FOX? It's getting uncomfortably close, people.

All of this is of course, me beginning to make the potato salad and searching for my bug repellent. I guess I could be over-reacting.
To argue against myself: It's also possible that they have some notion of a very tightly bound together online/on-the-air promotional plan, which is why online promotion has been next to nil. I suppose they could have some reason for waiting to fire off both kinds of promotion at the same time.
Not only is there a lack of any promotion or online promotion but the one bit of online buzz that did take off, the leaked posters, were shut down brutally and quickly!

It's like they don't actually want anyone to know about the show!

How many times do Fox do something good, like greenlighting Dollhouse and then renewing it, only for them to then snatch defeat from the jaws of victory by then doing something bizarre?
The crackdown on the leaked posters was entirely legitimate and understandable. They were, after all, copyrighted work product as part of deciding which one would actually be the poster. That's kind of an entirely different issue.
And it does also make sense in the context of a carefully managed concerted broadcast/online effort, as The One True B!x mentions in his counter argument to his argument (good idea BTW, the rest of us can take it easy while you sort it out between the one of you ;).

I dunno though, Fox haven't exactly impressed me with their organisation up to now (like their [non-]management of the Friday timeslot news or their [non-]management of the "Epitaph One" not airing news), they never really seem to be out ahead of the publicity curve. For that reason a cleverly coordinated plan doesn't really ring true but hopefully i'm wrong.
For that reason a cleverly coordinated plan doesn't really ring true but hopefully i'm wrong.

I don't buy it either (roughly speaking for the reasons you offer), but the world has surprised me before.
A very valid point B!x, but if you then select an official poster and then do bugger all with it then you're kinda defeating the the object of the excercise.

If you leave a vacuum you can't really complain when something fills it. Had they been running a campaign with trailers, posters, online promos etc then these leaked posters would hardly have been noticed.
Flipping through the channels, and happened across a Dollhouse commercial during the Fox movie (Spider-Man 2).
Flipping through the channels, and happened across a Dollhouse commercial during the Fox movie (Spider-Man 2).

What was it? (And what time was it roughly? I can try to catch it out here in the west.)

[ edited by The One True b!X on 2009-09-07 02:26 ]
C'mon now. Don't tease us with the fact that it was on but not come back to tell us on the west coast when to catch it. ;)
Just saw it. They're still using that Eliza/citylights image.
Crappy "I video'd my TV screen" copy coming shortly.
The ad. Spoilers, etc.

[ edited by The One True b!X on 2009-09-07 05:45 ]
Thanks B!x.

Seems to be aimed at existing fans, doesn't try to explain the Dollhouse setup or mindwipe stuff. Which could actually be a good thing in bringing in new viewers.
This got picked up by WTOP here in DC: "Sci-Fi shows stack Fall TV lineup."
And Josh gets a specific mention.

*sigh*.

(not too sure about the article's premise either - are there really that many more than usual for a new season ? 5 or 6 seems about the norm)

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