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April 04 2010

"Epitaph One" nominated for a Hugo Award. It will be up against several episodes of Doctor Who and one of FlashForward.

I think Dollhouse has a good chance of winning. None of the three Doctor Who episodes really stand out, same for FlashForward. Btw the aussie site has all the nominations so I swapped your link for that.
Yeah I was just going to come over to do that, heh. (And to add two tags.) I agree on the chances.

[ edited by The One True b!X on 2010-04-04 22:51 ]
Well listen, Dollhouse is not Whedon's finest work, but his avergae is still above the level either of these shows can manage, and Jed and Marissa Whedon did a hell of a job in that ep.
That was probably the best hour of tv i watched last year so it's gotta win...cause i'm selfish like that!!
None of the three Doctor Who episodes really stand out, same for FlashForward.

I dunno, the 'Flashforward' premiere was pretty impressive I thought Simon. But agreed, none of those 'Doctor Who' episodes were the show firing on all cylinders (the year of specials thinned the field a bit. No Moffat [ETA]or Cornell[/ETA] in other words). "Epitaph One" stands a decent chance I reckon and though I don't rate it as highly as many here i'd be happy for it to win out of that list. Kind of surprised there's no BSG on there though (presumably not enough voters thought enough of the end of the series).

And don't they normally make the nominated stories available to read ? Fingers crossed.

[ edited by Saje on 2010-04-04 23:25 ]
I didn't like any of those Doctor Who episodes. The specials really suffered from not having enough time to wrap up the story that I think RTD wanted for the final. In any case, I hope Dollhouse wins. I don't watch FlashForward so I can't comment, but Epitaph One deserves it.
Oh, Epitaph One...I remember like it was yesterday watching it at Comic Con with friends. What a good day that was :) Congrats Joss and all involved!! What a wonderful example of fine story telling!
That was one heart-wrenching, head-spinning, soul-shaking ep--congratulations, Jed, Maurissa and Joss!
Plus the DW episodes could split the Whovian voting block (as what happened last year I think), so it's really Dollhouse vs FlashForward. And if we accept the conventional wisdom that Dollhouse got better as it went along whereas FlashForward was the exact opposite then Dollhouse's chances are good.

Though Dr Horrible did win it in 2009.
Wonderful! And it'd be so great if it won, but it's even nice just to be nominated and recognized as good science fiction. It really was a stellar episode, and I remember the first time I watched it. It was so exciting, I really loved that feeling. :)

[ edited by JAYROCK on 2010-04-04 23:24 ]
And if we accept the conventional wisdom that Dollhouse got better as it went along whereas FlashForward was the exact opposite then Dollhouse's chances are good.

Well the nominated 'Flashforward' episode is the series premiere so by those lights as good as it ever got (not sure I agree with that personally) and for me "Epitaph One" isn't as good as 'Dollhouse' got, particularly bearing in mind that almost the entire show is eligible (since all bar 3 were aired/published in 2009). Even of series one i'd put at least "Briar Rose" or "A Spy in the House of Love" in there ahead of it. But I agree it's basically 'Dollhouse' vs 'Flashforward', Who isn't really in the running and in all honesty doesn't really deserve to be IMO ('The Waters of Mars' was the best of the three but even then, i'd say only about 5-10 minutes were excellent, the rest was a bit 'meh').

(last year there may have been an intra-Whovian split which was then further split by Losties for 'The Constant'. That said, though I thought 'Silence'/'Forest' and 'Turn Left' were good episodes, i'd still probably have voted for Dr H myself)
I think it will be either Epitaph One or Waters of Mars. Not enough people are into FF, and the other two Doctor Who episodes were really 'meh'. Hopefully the three DW episodes will split the vote.

Also: why is Epitaph One the episode that got nominated? It was the best episode of season one, but I thought Beloning and The Attic were both much better.
Because of the way the final nominees are voted for it's probably partly just that it was the single episode that more people agreed on (also - not sure about this BTW - but if the initial vote is by ranking favourites and e.g. 50% put "Briar Rose" and 50% put "Belonging" in first place but 80% put "Epitaph One" in second then, depending on how it's weighted, it could've ended up top).
FlashForward's first episode was pretty good, but not up there with Epitaph One for me. I'm a bit puzzled as well by the three Doctor Who nominations - surely Torchwood: Children of Earth is much more deserving.
T:CoE wouldn't be considered "short form", however.
'Epitaph One' blew my mind. In terms of script it lead me to believe Jed and Maurissa should have their own insane sci-fi horror series.

[ edited by gossi on 2010-04-05 00:17 ]
Couldn't you just nominate one episode of T:CoE?
You could yeah but which one ? I loved it but i'd have to watch it again to have any chance of picking a single episode out of the five, it was more as a whole that it blew me away.
Got to be Epitaph One from that choice. Not my favourite overall (that would probably be 'Belonging', with special mention to 'Epitaph Two') or from the first season (that would be 'Briar Rose'), but it was one of definitely one of the more interesting episodes and really felt like something special.

I really like Doctor Who, but I am always underwhelmed by the specials. The Waters of Mars was an exception to that. My only qualm with it was the ending. They offered up a great chance to really alter the character of the Doctor, leading up to the finale, if only he had left in the Tardis before he heard the gunshot. Imagine David Tennant playing "God" for a whole episode or two, rather than the brief minute we saw at the end. Still, 'Children of Earth' is by far the best thing RTD has written in the Who Versus. Obviously couldn't include it in this list, but I hope it has received the recognition it deserves.

And, while we are on the topic, the new series looks like it is going to be awesome. Aired in the UK last night and was a great opener. Pretty creepy in places and funny too. The trailer at the end got me pretty excited for what is to come too.

Oh, and Moon for the long-form category. Seen all of the films on that list and Moon is easily the best, followed by Up, District 9, Star Trek and lastly Avatar. All good films though.
I'm very happy that Dollhouse got nominated. Here's hoping things pan out in our favor!
I really need to watch T:CoE again too, but I think it was either episode 3 or 4 that I liked the most. The scenes of the cabinet ministers trying to decide what to do, after they know what's going on, were great and what happens with Peter Capaldi's character was incredible (there are other more appropriate words, but I'm avoiding spoilers - I'm sure a lot of people here haven't seen it).

I so agree on the ending to The Waters of Mars, Vandelay, that was my reaction straight away. An arrogant Doctor fixing things to his liking would have been amazing for a while. A great story arc opportunity sadly missed. Why do you say that T:CoE couldn't have been on this list? I don't see the difference between one episode of it compared to the other shows - each is just a part of a larger story.

[ edited by NotaViking on 2010-04-05 00:57 ]
Well, of course it was.
I so agree on the ending to Water of Mars, Vandelay, that was my reaction straight away.

Yep, me too. Mentioned it over on the .org after I saw the episode. Should've skipped 'Planet of the Dead', moved Waters up and given us one entire episode of "evil Doctor" afterwards I reckon.

And I agree about those moments on 'Children of Earth' NotaViking, not so sure about the episode as a whole (and I don't mean that as a euphemism, I mean i'm genuinely not sure about the episode because it's great moments - Gwen wondering about the non-interventionist Doctor, Gwen with guns, the well observed banality of evil during that cabinet meeting, Peter Capaldi throughout but his "solution" in particular, Jack's choice and so on - and the overall impact of the series as a whole that stuck in my memory rather than episodes).

Long-form it'd be a very tough choice between 'Moon' and 'District 9' for me with the latter possibly edging it because of, ironically enough, one of the reasons I liked 'Moon' so much which is to say, it was (deliberately) reminiscent of great '70s sci-fi pictures like 'Silent Running' (which obviously makes 'District 9' more original). "Best Actor, Long Form" though (if it existed) would be Sam Rockwell, hands down - amazing performance, particularly considering the technical constraints. I'd be happy if either won though, both very good films, both more deserving than the big studio efforts (though I enjoyed them well enough too).
Epitaph One is one of my favourite episodes in Dollhouse. It stands out so perfectly! People gotta be in a really bad mood to not see that. Crossing fingers for Epitaph ^^... uncrossing them now... well, you can't expect me doing it the whole time can you??? Honestly, I'm surrounded by invisible pigs. oO How did that come into the sentence?
Well listen, Dollhouse is not Whedon's finest work, but his avergae is still above the level either of these shows can manage, and Jed and Marissa Whedon did a hell of a job in that ep.

No of course not. Doctor Who is just one of the best SciFi Shows ever made. Dollhouse comes not even close to it and I say that as someone who loves the show.
Well, as somebody who doesn't like Dr. Who (the few episodes of it I watched pretty much bored me) I'm a bit puzzled why they would nominate 3 episodes of the same show. Isn't that a bit of overkill?
But between Epitaph One and FlashForward it's really no contest: this ep of FlashForward was halfway decent (too bad it went steeply downhill from there; why isn't it cancelled yet anyway?), but it can't hold a candle to Epitaph One.
Good question, Tai, I don't know the way things get nominated at the Hugos but 3 different Dr. Who specials? Those specials to me were a lot less interesting (except for the end of waters of mars, as mentioned above) than any of Moffat's eps or others from series proper. Dollhouse epitaph one wins against those three, for sure. Can't speak to Flash Forward, haven't watched it. (And Torchwood Children of Earth just about killed me. I cried four or five times, and I already knew one big spoiler!)
No other 'Doctor Who' episodes are eligible since they weren't first aired in 2009 (Steven Moffat didn't write any of last year's specials). In fact "The Next Doctor" (which was first aired on Christmas day 2008 in the UK) only qualifies because it then aired for the first time in the US in 2009 (i.e. the year of eligibility for the 2010 awards).

The nominees are decided by members of the World Science Fiction Society (they pick up to 5 for each category out of everything eligible and the top 5 then go on to this "final nominee" stage that we see here, which is voted by a ranked ballot of Worldcon members). There's way more than any fully sane person would want to know about it at the Hugos site.
I like Doctor Who. I really do. But those three specials... No. They were underwhelming. Waters, ok, all right, i buy that... sort of. But ...the next doctor? Bloody planet of the bloody dead? To each his own,
"Waters of Mars" was great, solid classic sci-fi, even if the outcome of it was underutilized. I see that as a fully deserved nomination. [ETA]And curse RTD for using the idea of the ending and then underusing it. Now we have to wait years for another opportunity, because any attempt at it will be seen as "unoriginal".[/ETA]

"The Next Doctor" is one of my least favorite episodes of the new series - right there with "Fear Her" and "The Idiot Lantern" - probably due to the underwhelmingly idiotic Cybus Cybermen. "Planet of the Dead": Just mediocre.

The first episode of Moffat's 2010 season is better than all of them combined - which says a bit, because I really liked "Waters of Mars".

And yes, "Children of Earth" deserves it more than any of the nominated episodes - Epitaph One included, even if I love it. But I have the same problem as others - I'm not able to pick one episode.

All in all, Epitaph One has a good chance - that, or Waters of Mars - as others have said.

Dollhouse is not Whedon's finest work, but his avergae is still above the level either of these shows can manage

FlashForward? Maybe. Haven't bothered with it. But Who? No. Just no.

ETA: Clarification

[ edited by Kaneda on 2010-04-05 12:26 ]
FlashForward's premiere was good but the rest of the show has tanked and I think that'll show. If any of the DW episodes will win it'll be Waters of Mars, which was the best of the 2009 specials - I'm surprised The End of Time wasn't nominated though. Epitaph One is a critic and fan favourite episode of Dollhouse - I'd say it has it in the bag.
I slept through one of the Who specials. I'd imagine 'Epitaph One' will win, and rightly so in my mind.
... I'm surprised The End of Time wasn't nominated though.

Pt 1 (moments aside) wasn't great IMO and Pt 2 isn't eligible since it aired in 2010*. Next year will be interesting though. Normally i'd say "The End of Time Pt 2" would be in the running both because it was pretty decent (better than the other recent specials IMO) and because it's a "big" episode being Tennant's last (unusual or "big" episodes stand out and stick in the memory and so tend to get more votes) BUT there'll be six (six !) Moffat penned episodes (plus the Christmas '10 special) eligible so I really doubt any other Who writer will get a look in.

* by one reading of the entry criteria Pt 1 doesn't qualify either since it talks about serialised stories qualifying on the basis of their final part.
The Doctor Who episodes were all distinctly average except The Waters of Mars, which was the best of the lot. Epitaph One deserves to win.
Dr Who physically hurts me to watch!! I just don't get it...and it's on all the time over here...please let E1 win...just to prove that there is good sci fi out there that doesn't need to be a rehash of silly old tv!!!
"The Waters of Mars" is the only real competition, and that was somewhat flawed.
... just to prove that there is good sci fi out there that doesn't need to be a rehash of silly old tv!!!

Heh, funnily enough one of the things I enjoyed about 'Epitaph One' was its "mash-up" quality, it felt in the grand old tradition of post-apocalyptic sci-fi (with a dash of network friendly horror). Take any episode of anything and i'll bet you could make the case that it's a rehash - there aren't many new ideas under the sun BUT there're new ways to put old ideas together.

As to 'Doctor Who', it's not to everyone's taste and that's the only thing about it there is to "get".
Weak year overall. E1 has it as a lock I'm sure. The Who specials were underwhelming as everyone has already said, and the only real competition would be from "Waters of Mars" which was easily the best but not flawed. Flashforward is an almost non contender. I can't believe it was even nominated. The first episode left me with a solid taste of meh in my mouth and it never got much better than that.

I'm more surprised that Lost didn't get a nomination. Even with season 5 being it's least impressive season, at least from an episode to episode perspective, it still had strong moments, especially from a sci-fi point of view.

And I too have to lament Torchwood: Children of Earth. By far the best piece of sci-fi on television all year. It's just too hard to pick a single episode. But couldn't it also qualify for long form?
Saje I meant that it is the same as the old version...not like that there's elements of the retro sci fi in there...i meant like it's just an update of the original...which ehm if anyone watches Pasolini's "Canterbury Tales" you get to see a whole lot of the old ways you never needed to see!!
ugh...posted in wrong thread, apologies....

[ edited by Harmalicious on 2010-04-05 16:52 ]
Saje I meant that it is the same as the old version...not like that there's elements of the retro sci fi in there...i meant like it's just an update of the original...

Sure, I know what you meant BlueSkies. But "rehash" has obvious negative connotations and implications of lack of originality as a criticism. Thing is, the 'Doctor Who' that's on now isn't "just an update" of the original, it is the original, it's all part of the same story and the same continuity. So your criticism amounts to "'Dollhouse' is newer than 'Doctor Who'" which to me isn't really valid (maybe cos i'm not all that new myself ;).

Basically, you don't like Who (which is obviously utterly fine, just a matter of individual tastes) and prefer "Epitaph One", doesn't seem to me like there needs to be any more to it than that - we don't need to prove categorically that everything else is bereft of originality or call a long-running series with millions of fans around the world "stupid" in order to elevate E1 (because it's pretty good as it is) but if we do start criticising on the basis of originality then I think it's fair to point out that E1 benefited from a lot of "cross-pollination" too (as all creative works do - none of them arise from a vacuum).

(and all that said, one of my - and Joss', for whatever that's worth - favourite series falls squarely into the "just an update of the original" camp. Still a bit puzzled as to why "Battlestar Galactica" isn't in there, I can only assume that a lot of people were unhappy with the ending and so didn't vote for any of the final episodes. Or maybe they genuinely thought none of them were very good ?)
I'm a little surprised as well that Lost didn't get any nominations for Season 5 (don't agree that it was the weakest season of the series--maybe the strangest/most off-kilter, possibly the most dividing after Season 3), but it didn't have something like Season 4's "The Constant" or "The Shape of Things to Come" to really pin down as an indisputable winner. I might've picked "The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham" (Locke ep) and "LaFleur" (when the time travel stops for a few years and Sawyer, Juliet, Miles, and Dan settle in with the Dharma crew), two eps in a row that maybe represented the best of Season 5, acting and emotional resonance-wise. I know a lotta folks enjoyed the 100th episode as well, "The Variable".

Maybe it's sorta like how The Lord of the Rings didn't win Best Picture until its final installment had seen release. As long as Season 6 is well-loved, it'll garner Lost a latter-season win.
Oh, I was never implying that season 5 was the weakest season, just that it had no real stand out episodes as you said Kris. Nothing like "The Constant" or "The Shape of Thing to Come" like you said. I also agree on the S5 episodes you mentioned as being some of, if not, the best of the season, "The Variable" aside.

From a story telling and pacing perspective, S5 could have been their best yet.

And I also agree that it'll get recognition next year. I'd say at least two episodes will be nom'd. The finale, regardless of how well it ends the series, will be probably be too good in most respects not to be, and I'd assume another episode. From the pool so far I'd say either the season premiere or "Ab Aeterno." I'm calling it now, the nominations will end with two Lost episodes and three Who episodes.
[Battlestar Galactica] falls squarely into the "just an update of the original" camp.

I wouldn't exactly say that Galactica was just an updated version of the original, certainly not in the same way new Who is. The tone and style of new Galactica is very different to the original show, whereas Who is still in the same vein, albeit with a much higher budget and more technology.

Playing Devil's Advocate, I could see someone saying that they find modern Who to be just the same thing as the show that aired all those years ago and that it is rather redundant. You certainly couldn't accuse BSG of treading the same ground as the original series, as it really only took the basic structure and characters of the original programme and gave it a very modern twist, both in terms of tone and themes.
And on the subject of Galactica and it's omission, I can see why it may have been left out. A lot of people were divided on it's end and the final few episodes leading up to it. However, I just don't see how "Blood on the Scales/The Oath" isn't on the same level as, or miles ahead of these other nominees. Perhaps it just got lost in the muddle of things. I'm sure when nominations came around it wasn't so fresh in the minds of nominators and, of course, the aforementioned backlash could have hurt these very fine episodes as well.
Just finished my first Dollhouse Season 1 rewatch. Epitaph 1 was even better than I remembered. Strange to think that this episode, which never aired (stupid Fox), could now win an award. I'd love to see DH get some recognitition. It was severely underrated by everyone except hardcore Whedon fans.
So it's up against three awful RTD specials and FlashFoward.

Worst. Nominations. EVER.

Regardless, go dollhouse!
RTD has never won a Hugo for Doctor Who - the winners were all Moffat penned eps. I'm hoping that's another tally in the Epitaph One column.
I wouldn't exactly say that Galactica was just an updated version of the original, certainly not in the same way new Who is.

That's why I put the quotes there. Because BSG is most definitely "just an update" of a previous series (if I could i'd put more double quotes around the "just" since that implies it's lesser for it whereas my entire point is that it isn't - the "just" is BlueSkies word) while at the same time offering new themes, tone etc. (that's part of the "update" aspect). New Who on the other hand isn't since it's the same series i.e. the adventures we're seeing of the 9th, 10th and 11th Doctors are no more redundant than the adventures we saw of the 5th, 6th and 7th were (or any others after the first) since it's a continuation of the show - it isn't intended to be new, it's intended to be exactly as you say Vandelay, the same series made with more money and better technology (not a reboot or rehash but the actual same show). So saying it's worse for that is basically saying "Series that are 45+ years old aren't as good as series that are 1-2 years old".

Re: devil's advocate, sure, I can see that too since people believe all kinds of different things. I just don't agree with them for the reasons given, hence, y'know, this ;).

However, I just don't see how "Blood on the Scales/The Oath" isn't on the same level as, or miles ahead of these other nominees

Agreed The Xan Man. I'd have both of those in ahead of "The Next Doctor" and "Planet of the Dead" for sure. As mentioned, I think people have been disappointed with the ending and have let that affect their judgement of the episodes leading up to it. Pity.
Yay, "Epitaph One"!

My favourite Dollhouse ep is probably "A Spy in the House of Love," but that's not a particularly sci-fi episode, in comparison, and not as high-profile one at that. (Not airing raises one's profile.) I haven't seen any of the other nominees.

On BSG: I'll agree on "The Oath." I have some big problems with "Blood on the Scales," though I could imagine it being better than the other nominees, which I haven't seen. And the final Gaius/Felix scene is probably my favourite in 4.5, and one of my favourites in the series. And on Lost: I think season five was a relatively strong year, at least after the first few episodes, but...well, my feelings about Lost the show, and even its best episodes are, let's say, mixed.

[ edited by WilliamTheB on 2010-04-06 10:07 ]
I love Doctor Who (more than is strictly healthy) but I cannot fathom why it gets three noms, essentially for every eligible episode this time, including the highly unimpressive The Next Doctor. Stargate, Lost, BSG, Ashes to Ashes (is that eligible? Does it count as Sci-Fi/Fan?), Warehouse 13, The Sarah Jane Adventures, do none of these shows matter? In my mind only The Waters of Mars and Epitaph One should be on that list (although I did enjoy Planet of the Dead), I'd agree on The Oath, probably episode 8 of Ashes to Ashes Series 2, then maybe The Mad Woman in the Attic story of The Sarah Jane Adventures (or The Wedding of Sarah Jane Smith).

Oh, well, here's to Epitaph One!
I want to know where Children of Earth is.

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