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"I used to be a highly respected Watcher. Now I'm a wounded dwarf with the mystical strength of a doily."
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October 14 2009

(SPOILER) Can Summer Glau save Dollhouse? TV squad does not think so.

Let's hope the network learns how to count those DVR numbers.

Amen. This thought goes far more than Dollhouse itsefl, it's about the Television that's coming. And networks dont't seem to realize that.
What a horrible scenario to put Summer in, given that it takes a huge team of people to make or break a show.
Whatever happens, I am looking forward to seeing how she's used and welcome her aboard with no pressure, strings or ties whatsoever.
Pretty awful "article" really. Just another fluffy and vapid opinion piece designed to get hits.

[ edited by VaughnOfTheDead on 2009-10-14 12:15 ]
Never thought it was that bad, but in the wider audience, Summer Glau has little to no star power. She won't help with the ratings but she damn well will be a joy to watch on the screen. I'm excited.
Every time I see an article like this where the author overstates Summer Glau's star power by inflating her importance beyond that of any other of the characters from her previous shows - most notably the billed lead - I can't help but chuckle.

And bang my head in frustration that she has yet to have been given the chance to actually play the lead role in anything, in which case the level of expectation this kind of question implies would actually be fair to make.

Speaking of actors who need star vehicles...


Clarification: 'Overstates Summer Glau's star power' as in equating her ability to draw viewers as a supporting cast member (which every role of hers has been to date) with that expected from someone playing the lead.

[ edited by brinderwalt on 2009-10-14 21:32 ]
I don't think the article was overstating Summer Glau's star power but instead commenting on the way the FOX trailers seemed to be doing just that.
My guess: FOX knows Whedon fans and TSCC fans love Summer*. Not all Whedon fans currently watch Dollhouse, and there is a contingent of TSCC fans that has been too disappointed about the cancellation to give Dollhouse a chance. Summer just might bring in some new viewers from both groups. I hope so.

*Obviously, there is overlap between the two groups.
I agree with ActualSize. I think Fox is targeting a specific group of people, and Summer is perfect bait.
Unfortunately, the specific group they are targeting with their perfect bait is a very tiny one.
Yes, but the problem is that the people she's designed to bait are the people who have already seen the show and either liked it or didn't (from an advertising perspective). As long as her character is good, I'm happy.

"Saving" the show would be a better task for a new character who already comes from an established show to guest star or possibly a movie actor. Essentially, someone whose appeal isn't already primarily isn't targeted at Whedon fans.

Then again, I don't think Joss hired her as a PR stunt, so I think the idea of her saving the show is a bit silly to begin with.
No one but us would turn in to the show just because Alexis Denisof is on, and no one will turn in just because Summer Glau is- the people who would do so are already watching.
Summer will bring in some more fans who first saw as Cameron in the Terminator series, ones who may not (yet) love Dollhouse but already love her.
And here's the rest of the promo gallery for Summer:
http://www.hitfix.com/galleries/2009-10-13-first-look-summer-glau-on-dollhouse
The complete set of 7 promo pics for Summer's first episode was posted here.
I'm still pushing for a Glee/Dollhouse crossover. It would be so perfect! (Glee is just slightly surreal enough to handle it while the premise of Dollhouse makes it perfect to use the cast as the bit characters in other series. And I don't blame the article, it's mostly just pointing out the fallacies of the way the show is advertised. Granted, it is getting some air time so yay?

Yeah I agree that Summer Glau isn’t nearly famous enough for people who aren’t already fans to check out the show, but I guess they can recycle that promo reel footage from Terminator of a young attractive ingénue.
Yeah, no, I really can't see a Glee/Dollhouse crossover. I'm as much a fan of crossovers as the next guy (and love the jumping over from Buffy to Angel) but saying these two worlds are the same. Nope, I'm having none of that.

Joss should pull a stunt cast and get Kristen Bell in the House. Is Kristen big enough to be a stunt cast?
Then again, I don't think Joss hired her as a PR stunt, so I think the idea of her saving the show is a bit silly to begin with.


Not only that, but the whole concept of "saving" tv shows by introducing new characters is imo entirely bogus - unless you're talking about replacing a show's lead(s). Tv shows - especially serialized ones - live or die based greatly on how well their lead characters are received by the audience. Introducing Glaus or Tudyks might get you more viewers in the short run, but ultimately a show's staying power hinges most directly on its lead(s) ability to retain an audience and not its supporting characters - for better or worse.

Yeah I agree that Summer Glau isn?t nearly famous enough for people who aren?t already fans to check out the show, but I guess they can recycle that promo reel footage from Terminator of a young attractive ing鮵e.


Even if she were "famous enough" it still wouldn't help in the long run since - due to the various connections that have existed for some time between Summer Glau and Dollhouse - I think it's safe to assume that the only reason fans of hers wouldn't already be watching DH is if they've already seen it and don't like it, meaning that they may tune in for the episodes she appears in but as soon as her character leaves/looses focus they're likely to leave as well.

Also, for what it's worth I don't think Fox is overstating Summer Glau's star power at all - it may be untapped to most audiences, but it's there nonetheless. :)

[ edited by brinderwalt on 2009-10-14 21:54 ]
I don't think so either. Its concept execution which is the problem, not so much who's in it.
Joss should pull a stunt cast and get Kristen Bell in the House. Is Kristen big enough to be a stunt cast?

No. They tried that on Heroes, which had a way bigger audience at the time and it had little to no effect. That said, I'd love to see Kristen on the show. I don't think stunt casting works at all, especially niche ones, but great actors are always welcome.
You know who Dollhouse needs? Numfar!

"Numfar! Do the dance of composite event!"
If/when they get around to actually showing the "attic", Exhibit B should be a comatose Joss.
I think the Attic's going to be plenty disturbing as it is.
Ah, Heroes. I completely erased that part of her career from my mind. I really would love to see Kristen officially join the Whedonverse anyway. Jason Dohring and Francis Capra are also very welcome in my books.
I'd love it if when they finally show the Attic that Joss hired to populate it actors such as Amber Benson, Emma Caulfield, Kristine Sutherland, Charisma Carpenter, Danny Strong and so on. See if you can spot the theme....
"Glau couldn't save her own show...."

I protest! Summer was hardly even in season two of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles! On a related note, even as a Whedonite, I admit that when I saw Summer's face in the promo that aired during Dollhouse last week, my FIRST thought was "OMG! THEY'RE BRINGING BACK TERMINATOR! SQUEE!", followed immediately after by disappointment.

[ edited by will.bueche on 2009-10-15 00:40 ]
This discussion has made me really wishful for Kristen to become officially part of the Whedonverse. One day soon I hope.
The hilarity of this article is that it answers those who say that Joss has not ever been a successful TV showrunner. If he hadn't made a cult star out of Summer, we wouldn't even be having this conversation. Sure she was the "star" of T:SCC, but she is still mostly known as "that Firefly/Serenity" girl. It's not like she's a beloved recurring character on Grey's Anatomy or anything.

[ edited by Arsenal on 2009-10-15 01:22 ]
The hilarity of this article is that it answers those who say that Joss has not ever been a successful TV showrunner. If he hadn't made a cult star out of Summer, we wouldn't even be having this conversation.

Not to nitpick but it's impossible to make someone into a cult star. A regular star yes, but cult appeal can't be made - a person either has it from the get go or... they don't.

Sure she was the "star" of T:SCC, but she is still mostly known as "that Firefly/Serenity" girl. It's not like she's a beloved recurring character on Grey's Anatomy or anything.

To Whedonites that's probably the case. To me the true irony of this article and others like it is the fact that she wasn't the "star" of T:SCC and yet virtually everyone treats her like she was. In a way it's good because it highlights what a good job she did in her role considering she managed to eclipse the show's technical leads, but at the same time she gets occasional flack for "not being able to save her own show" when in reality it was never her show to save.
In fact, a lot more Summer on that show might've saved it. Who knows?
Even fans of the show (i'm one) will often say that T:TSCC faltered in season 2 when they had the run of episodes where Cameron barely featured. I understand why they did it (it was 'Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles' after all) but by that time the horse had bolted and Summer/Cameron was clearly one of the main draws in the show, might as well embrace it.

See if you can spot the theme....

I hope it's the 'Airwolf' theme, I used to love that one. Or 'Magnum PI'.
No! The theme from The A-Team.
Theme off ! Two themes enter, one theme leaves !
Dammit! Now I have the Airwolf theme in my head!
I understand why they did it (it was 'Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles' after all) but by that time the horse had bolted and Summer/Cameron was clearly one of the main draws in the show, might as well embrace it.

One of the most interesting things I found about that was how the Fox PR people had no problem picking it up and running with it (hence all the Cameron-centric advertising during the show's final run.) Meanwhile the show itself managed to run in the opposite direction, and... cancellation.

It's a big part of why I actually have more confidence in the ability of Fox's PR department to identify what works well in their shows than I do in the creative staffs behind them seem to.

[ edited by brinderwalt on 2009-10-15 12:33 ]
Nope. Not really that interested in Summer Glau. I'm more interested in Alexis Denisof on Dollhouse, and seeing him on my TV screen again.

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