Saturday, March 28, 2009

Dollhouse, "Echoes": I wish I could go back to college

Quick spoilers for last night's "Dollhouse" coming up just as soon as I jump on a trampoline...

"Echoes" wasn't on the review DVD that Fox sent out that included last week's "Man on the Street" and next week's "Needs," and I can see why. While it fills in important pieces of backstory about both Echo/Caroline and the Dollhouse itself, it also spends a lot of time on elements of the series that viewers haven't really liked to this point.

Basically, it's the "Dollhouse" equivalent of Star Trek's "The Naked Time," or Star Trek: TNG's "The Naked Now," or "Band Candy" on Buffy, or any other episode of a sci-fi series that has some outside element (drugs, alien mind control, whatever) unleashing the characters' inhibitions so we can watch them be silly for a while. The problem is, I don't want to see Topher or DeWitt or Dominic be silly. From where I sit, they're the villains of the piece, loathsome in just about every way, and watching them unleash their inner child, strip down to their undies, or whatever other ridiculous behavior they did isn't amusing or endearing the way it is when Mr. Sulu runs barechested through the Enterprise with a fencing sword; it's just creeps acting creepy in a different way.

At the same time, this is already the third or fourth instance in seven episodes where the imprinting process has gone awry -- not to mention the ongoing problem of the Dolls not having some sort of default memory of each other in the event of an incident like Echo turning up in someone else's mission -- and so this gross and evil institution also seems like a very incompetent organization. If they're going to be so awful, they can at least be good at it, right?

I'm glad to know more about Caroline, and about who's funding the Dollhouse, but if I hadn't already seen "Needs," I'd be dismissing "Man on the Street" as a one-time fluke before the show went back to putting Eliza Dushku into fetish wear.

What did everybody else think?

46 comments:

Michael Cowgill said...

I can see what you're saying. I guess I find DeWitt at the very least to be more morally gray than vile -- or at least she thinks she's morally gray, doing good things through highly questionable means. That doesn't mean she isn't vile or that I condone what they're doing, but it makes her more interesting. Topher I don't care about -- he didn't seem that different except the no pants. As a Homicide fan, I liked seeing Reed Diamond get to do a little more than be a jerk.

The big difference I see in this episode and, say, a similar kind of Star Trek episode is that it might have last effects on the characters, regular folks and dolls alike. I see the glitches the same way, or at least Echo's glitches. It's not so much the process as Caroline's brain fighting back against the process, although Topher's mentioning of glitches also suggests they're just part of a process still need of perfection. Given his arrogance in general, his arrogance about how the drug would affect them (wrong there), maybe it's not so surprising than in truth all the things that "can't be happening" actually can and do happen.

Nicole said...

The outfit that Echo wore in this episode was ridiculous. The only way I can process it is to imagine that Joss is doing an intentional callback to Buffy's in!appropriate! outfits from season one of that show.

Here's what I don't get: if there are 20 Dollhouses all over the world, why would Echo stay in LA, where Caroline lived? Wouldn't it make sense to send her to New York or Sydney or something? Why leave her somewhere she could be recognized or recognize other things? If she was halfway across the world, it wouldn't matter so much that she's a beautiful woman whose face others will remember, or that she will have memories regarding the places in Los Angeles. I know that not all of her assignments take place in LA, but it still seems like sloppy work. Alan's right; the LA Dollhouse seems incompetent.

james said...

This episode was good. It delved into the story of the major character and we continue to learn more information about the Dollhouse organization-we see how the Dolls are recruited. We learn there's a five year contract which could play into Whedon's five year plan.

We get a glimpse at other character intentions. It followed the words that Adelle DeWittt said to Echo in the beginning of the episode, "Not everyhing is as it seems." Somewhat cliche? Yes but we get to see the different dimensions of characters.

I assume the mole is the Doctor who got her face scratched up. She's not in this episode and one can assume if the mole was infected they would reveal their plans. Dewitt's affection for Echo continues to be fleshed out; perhaps she is the mole.

I was confused as to why the neighbor left. Are they putting it another Doll in her place?

Hopefully, there's a reason why they've focused on the Dolls glitching so much. The obvious reason is to say humans are more complicated creatures with a soul that can't be easily erased while, at the same time, showing the flaws of Dollhouses. Based on next week previews there appears to be a climax of the glitching.

Did you catch the competition comments? Big surprise there. I also can't help to think the big boss comments are foreshadowing, "We don't need one active we need an entire army."

If the episodes keep pushing forward I'll enjoy the show much more then the first 5 or 6 stand alone episodes.

Shan said...

Personally, I don't mind the "villains" of the show (Topher, Adelle, Laurence) as much as you do. Yes, they're doing some morally questionable things, but so did other "bad guys" within shows we like (Tony Soprano, Baltar, Dexter, Al Swearingen, Lilah Morgan, etc.). I enjoy the characters at the Dollhouse, moral imperatives aside, and thought this ep was a hoot (a la other similar Whedon ventures like "Band Candy," "Tabula Rasa" and "Spin the Bottle.")

Any show that features a "Drawer of Inappropriate Starches" and makes me laugh this much gets a pass. Plus, I thought it funny that Topher was basically unchanged, and it was nice to see that other side of Laurence and Adelle (Diamond and Williams, along with Lennis, were really quite good playing their drug induced states).

I do agree, however, that it is getting tiresome to have something always go wrong with the programming. I realize that's part of upping the drama each week, but it does undermine the competence of the process and organization.

Zack Smith said...

Dug the "Avenue Q" ref in your header, but I thought for sure you were going to go, "as soon as I go through my drawer of starches..."

Did anyone else expect the guy thumping his head against the glass to start going, "How's Annie?" "How's Annie?" "How's Annie?"

(Going to see if anyone gets this.)

I didn't feel like we learned anything about Caroline's background that wasn't implied before. Casting be damned, I want it to turn out that her boyfriend survived and became Alpha.

I was also confused as to whether there was some gap between when she escaped the hospital and when Adele interrogated her. Was Caroline a fugitive for a few years?

Interesting that Mellie's DollName is "November," the character actress Miracle Laurie was originally announced as playing.

Sam-the-college-student was played by Mehcad Brooks. I had to look up his name, but I remembered him from that awful Applewhite storyline on DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES. I recall liking him, if only because I saw an interview where he rightly grumped that the storyline was lame and used Alfre Woodward poorly.

The scene where DeWitt and Topher started babbling was The Most Joss Whedon Scene Ever. Watching all of a guy's shows (and reading a lot of his scripts and comics) gets you used to scenes where characters suffering from some trauma/hallucination speak in gibberish. See also: River, Druscilla, Fred-in-the-cave, etc.

It's not his strongest suit as a writer, though he might not have actually written that scene. But it had his "voice" to it.

Overall, I agree with you that they've had the Actives break down once too often. Echo in this case doesn't even need to be infected to break character!

I want to see if they take the series in a different direction by the end of Season One. That said, the pacing feels both too slow and too fast. So far, they've established the mysterious threat of Alpha, Ballard's quest, and Echo's developing individuality. There's been some information, but they're not in a position to pay any of them off by the end of season one. Heck,, at least BUFFY tended to show the Big Bad by midway through a season!

And yet, I continue to watch. Quite curious about "Needs" next week. I am easily bored on Fridays.

Stef said...

This episode finally felt like Joss to me, and I really liked it. With the combo of this and last week's, Dollhouse now has me hooked for real instead of just out of anticipation. I'll keep watching and hope it gets renewed for next year.

Anonymous said...

I was surprised they went to this plot so soon. I realize it gave them a way to inject a whole bunch of exposition, but it seemed like a wasted opportunity. On a conspiracy-minded show you'd expect something like this to lead to game-changing revelations (someone is revealed as a mole, someone is revealed as a dying, someone is revealed as being in love), but it is too early in the show's run to do stuff like that.

Stef said...

Oh, and seeing Adele use the bargaining chip of Sam's mother as the reason to get him to sign on to the Dollhouse, it made me wonder if Caroline signed on in order to ensure her boyfriend would get medical help and avoid jail. That would only make sense if she met with Adele immediately after the lab break-in, though. And in the scene at the beginning of the ep, didn't Adele say something about them playing this game for 2 years now? That had me confused.

laura said...

My guess: Echo is the mole. Alpha did something to her head, turning her into a "sleeper mole" or somesuch. Which is why he let her live and the reason she seems to be acting strange/going off script/etc more than others.

It would be sweet if it were the case, a mole inside a fake personality inside an empty head. Too bad I'm usually wrong about these things. :(

baxter said...

I can only watch this show by not taking the premise seriously, so I was okay with this episode because I was able to downgrade the fact that this episode uses two rapes, two murders, two attempted murders, and fetal brain experimentation as ooky dramatic plot points and not much else. It is competently executed trashy television -- and that's the only word for a show that have Dushku wander around in her weird fantasy-ware for a whole hour.

But if the new black male Doll becomes Agent Zulu, I'm out.

baxter said...

By the way, not taking it seriously allowed me to enjoy Reed Diamond's performance tremendously.

Rachel said...

This episode was a mess, plain and simple. Way too much going on, and way too much of the silly. The silly was good for one scene, not six. It made this episode feel long and painful.

Though the people playing Sierra and Topher are really good, and I'm looking forward to seeing more of them.

jomo said...

Okay, this is the one where I'm out. The premise is riddled with holes and the execution has been shaky at best, but the Mellie/November reveal was the BS moment for me. This paranoid plot device is hokey in every case except The Prisoner, and Dollhouse did nothing, I repeat, nothing to use it in any interesting way. I cringed at the later years of The X-Files when it became clear that there never would be any definitive answers. These "layers of the onion" plots are hard to pull off, especially in an open-ended format, and the Dollhouse formula makes it even less workable. Whedon is a gifted pastiche artist, but he needed to think this one through a little more. Maybe read some Alistair MacLean. The show is a sanctimonious bore. Thanks for your work, Alan. I'm done.

Anonymous said...

Glitches? Again? There's been a glitch of some sort in every single episode. Why would anyone ever hire these people for anything??

bsangs said...

Seriously Alan, why do you continue to blog about this train wreck? Simply because the alleged Great One has his name attached to it? It is a horrible show. Honestly, if it wasn't a Whedon vehicle, would you still be wasting your time with it? There are so many other shows worth reviewing.

Alan Sepinwall said...

Yes, they're doing some morally questionable things, but so did other "bad guys" within shows we like (Tony Soprano, Baltar, Dexter, Al Swearingen, Lilah Morgan, etc.).

I would argue that there's a significant difference between "Dollhouse" and, say, "The Sopranos." "Sopranos" was structured in a way that you saw the world almost entirely from the viewpoint of the bad guys (even Melfi became morally complicit after a point), and while you saw examples of the people they victimized, they weren't the centerpiece of the show the way that Echo is. It'd be like watching a version of "The Sopranos" where the main character is Tracee the stripper -- only perhaps even worse, because it would be a Tracee who has no idea how Ralphie's abusing her.

Karen said...

Well, I agree. This episode was a hot wet mess. The Actives "glitch" waaaaaay too often. And, yes, watching Topher get goofy was not a pleasant break because I LOATHE Topher. LOATHE him.

One thing I did find interesting was the [possible?] endgame in turning November into Mellie: it really was a remarkably clever attempt to get Ballard to drop the Dollhouse investigation. His chivalric indignation over what has happened to Caroline was getting leveraged in an attempt to transfer that indignant protectiveness to Mellie. "And you said you liked taking care of me." That was well done, even if it was, in the end, ineffective.

Other than that? Jesus. That ridiculous outfit on Dushku was just rancid icing on the very nasty cake. As Dushku's a credited producer, I can only imagine she embraced it. It's one thing to watch Veronica Mars dress up ironically as a Japanese schoolgirl in "The Wrath of Con;" this was something else altogether.

Speaking of which--the guy who hired "Alice" was supposed to be a regular client with a "new fantasy," but that house sure didn't look like it belonged to someone with the bankroll to afford regular Active rental. I guess it could be a "fake" house, like the dream house from last week's episode, but if so that should have been made a little clearer. In fact, the episodes could all benefit from a little bit more info on who the Dollhouse's clients are and how they find it in the first place.

Mica said...

Well, well, I didn't like Caroline. I kinda like Echo, but I thought Caroline so annoying. Good think for us she's a doll now.
I liked seeing DeWitt and Topher totally out of their normally behaviour. I can't see them as vilains as everybody wants. I love both of them (Topher specially).
I never understood whey people get so angry because they are gray and not black. Do you really think Dollhouse is the worst place in the world!? I mean, I wouldn't want to have my memory wiped out, but I can't see that place as the worst nightmare of someone.

And Mellie...oh Mellie...come back!! I loved all her scenes and Ballard scenes as well.
The only part I relly didn't like was Caroline/Alice (and Echo) parts. I usually love Eliza, but I'm getting tired of her on this show. Too much time screen.

BigTed said...

The concept that the Dollhouse is turning its enemies into dolls -- like Caroline, who apparently was an animal activist who stumbled onto their research -- is yet another one that makes no sense. If you want to get rid of someone, why use a (clearly faulty and supposedly temporary) process to erase her brain while keeping her around all the time -- instead of, say, discrediting her, exiling her, framing her for a crime, killing her, whatever?

And, on the other hand, instead of coercing people into being Dolls, why not find actual volunteers by convincing them that they'll be getting "Matrix"-style superpowers and doing a lot of good for the country (something a few of the missions actually seem to entail)?

Sigh... At least last night's episode finally convinced me of one thing: Topher actually is a Doll, and he's been imprinted with the brain of a genius 11-year-old.

Andrew said...

I don't know. I've never considered characters being evil as somehow precluding them from being funny under certain circumstances.

Anonymous said...

Caroline is annoying (Oh, let's cry for the monkeys...at least she wasn't a violent animal-rights-douche). And not that I'm saying there is anything wrong with animal-rights...but to get so worked up about that cause in relation to other things you could be doing makes her an annoying douche.

As for the episode as a whole, I liked it. This is the first episode (though not perfect by a long way) that I can see Whedon's fingerprints. A lot of the dialogue was witty and the plot was out-of-the-ordinary. This, more than episode 6, makes believe that this show can redeem itself, from both a long-term plotting and episodic entertainment POV.

Anonymous said...

Based on what I've seen of the show and what I've read about its origins, I think Whedon got boxed into doing this. He is somewhat behind the concept, but not running on all cylinders. He still has the magic (as Dr. Horrible demonstrates) but he is half-assing this show. Oh, and BTW, Eliza Dushku (who came up with the idea for the show) is not pulling her weight.

Josh needs to do some miracle-working in order to make her, and the show, look good. Vince Gillian (X-Files, Breaking Bad) would have been a better showrunner for this particular type of show.

Sam Hobart said...

Not to defend the glitching because I think its been used too much to this point, I do think its important to keep in mind that for the most part we're seeing the high risk engagements wherein there are unusual variables. Particularly in the this episode and the heist episode, there was an outside influence on the situation with a direct connection to the Dollhouse (especially if we're assuming that Alpha was responsible for the remote wipe of Echo in the heist episode). Echo, however, seems to glitch more than the other dolls and hopefully we see an explanation soon as to why DeWitt is keeping her out of the Attic.

abby said...

"I would argue that there's a significant difference between "Dollhouse" and, say, "The Sopranos.""

Alan, I completely understand what you said in the ensuing paragraph but that sentence in isolation simply slays me. I too would argue there is a difference between one of the top 3 shows of all time and one that thus far is not amongst Joss Whedon's top 3. A significant difference indeed.

"Did anyone else expect the guy thumping his head against the glass to start going, "How's Annie?" "How's Annie?" "How's Annie?""

Not certain you've done JW a service Zack by inviting a comparison to the fabulous Twin Peaks! But now that you have it reminds me even more forcefully of Leland/Killer Bob in the cell. Guess the pesky Bob frequently suffered from Excedrin headache number 666.

I remember JW made reference to the Buffy legacy and Alias in particular during the series ending hoopla. And I remember the ersatz Alias scenes at the beginning of season 7 as the potentials were killed (girl in neon wig runs to techno music in an exotic location for goodness sakes!). But I fervently hope Joss has a better plan with this series than to exorcise his Abrams envy. While the first seasons of Buffy and Angel weren't all that great the entire aborted run of Firefly was well above this level, I'd thought that showed increasing experience and artistic maturity.

Casting Eliza Dushku in a part requiring versatility and intelligence makes me doubt my faith. While she may well be a whiz kid in real life she does not seem capable of projecting this on the screen. Sexy, Crafty, Funny, yes....Smart, no. This is certain to be an obstacle in the upcoming episode involving Echo as a neurosurgeon in leather pants.

Number Five said...

Yeah what a mess. It also reminded me of Star Trek (or any one of its spin offs or pretty much any long-running sci-fi show), but it didn't make much sense to do now, and in any event they botched it. I guess they thought it would be funny to set an episode on a college campus where everyone was stoned? Except the infection didn't make sense (so DeWitt and Topher can function pretty well, but Boyd and Dominic are helpless? Life apparently goes on as usual in a college where an airborne disease is spreading?) and the scenes of the characters acting silly were awful. Even the awesome Olivia Williams couldn't pull it off.

And they didn't even have to use it to reveal plot stuff, but what did we learn about the characters? DeWitt has doubts about what they're doing? We knew that. Topher is completely amoral? We knew that. I guess Dominic does feel some guilt about trying to kill Echo, but that's it.

Even the partial reveal about how Echo came to the Dollhouse was muddled. I have the same confusion as Stef. I think what happened was naive, shallow animal rights activist Caroline stumbled onto the larger work the lab was doing, tried to expose the corporation for two years, and then something happened that forced her to accept DeWitt's offer. But the way they depicted her and the boyfriend's escape, plus the parallel with the lab tech, suggested immediate induction. So we'll see.

It's good to know next week's episode is better, because this was a big waste of time.

Shan said...

It'd be like watching a version of "The Sopranos" where the main character is Tracee the stripper -- only perhaps even worse, because it would be a Tracee who has no idea how Ralphie's abusing her.

Point taken. Where the show has stumbled, I believe, is not giving us examples of Dolls who have entered the program willingly, knowing full well what will happen during their 5 year tenure. I'm not as squicked out by the premise as some, but it would have been nice early on to have an episode focused on someone finding out about the program, and going through that interview process with Adelle where she lays it all out and lets someone choose. If ALL the dolls are victims of extortion, human trafficking, having no other options, etc., then it's certainly a rougher watch.

For example, one of my theories is that Adelle is a Dollhouse "graduate," so it's not like she's unaware of the toll it can take, nor putting someone through something that she herself has not experienced. If we had had an early episode exploring the "willing recruit" angle (instead of wasting an hour on hamfisted "bird in a cage pop singer" drivel), it might have opened up a broader perspective for the following episodes.

But, we have what we have, and at least I'm entertained enough to see where it goes.

Nugget said...

I was able to enjoy the Topher/DeWitt scenes because, in my opinion, DeWitt isn't an outright villain... yet. Her purpose and her motivations for being involved with the dollhouse are still unclear. So, until her her larger arc is revealed, she's a gray character for me. And I'm immensely intrigued by her.

Topher, on the other hand, can be taken at face value and that's what makes him reprehensible. He's participating in this essentially murderous organization simply as a way of perfecting and executing his own brilliance (or so he thinks of it). He's a complete narcissist devoid of a conscience. And all that fits with why his drug-induced state was almost no different from his normal state.

DeWitt, on the other hand, became a completely different person. And it was hilarious. To me, at least.

I'm fascinated by this show on conceptual and philosophical levels, but their execution is leaving a lot to be desired, thus far. I want this show to succeed because I want to know the endgame, but they really need to get their ducks in a row and learn a little thing called consistency. The "bigger picture" just can't have the punch it needs without it.

Kalin said...

Sure he's the "bad guy," but I find Topher to be hilarious in every instance he has the chance. His spastic evil maniacal-ness really makes the dollhouse folk less dry.

Edd said...

@Abby

Not certain you've done JW a service Zack by inviting a comparison to the fabulous Twin Peaks! But now that you have it reminds me even more forcefully of Leland/Killer Bob in the cell.


I'm not sure it's a fair comparison either. David Lynch ripped off his audience. He didn't play fair. I was a big "Twin Peaks" fan until Laura Palmer's murder was solved. That's when the series' ratings dropped like a stone, so I wasn't alone feeling that way. In a mystery, the story has to include clues that point to the killer. Killer Bob came out of left field, which meant neither the strange characters nor their strange activities had anything to to with the mystery. Lynch just enjoyed putting weird characters on screen. But that doesn't add up to a story. According to Wikipedia, Lynch felt the identity of the murderer was just a McGuffin. He never wanted to reveal him. I enjoyed the weird characters, but it was important that they meant something in the mystery's context. In the end, they didn't.

Joss Whedon has always played fair with his audience. When he's thrown complex goings-on at his viewers, we could still trust that that there would be an emotional resonance with the story.

Peter D Bakija said...

Just a quick Geek Reference check, as I don't think anyone mentioned it yet; "Rossum" is the name of the corporation that makes robots in the 1921 Czech sci-fi play R.U.R., which introduced the word "robot" into popular culture. Which is, ya know, geek funny.

Wax Banks said...

From where I sit, they're the villains of the piece, loathsome in just about every way, and watching them unleash their inner child, strip down to their undies, or whatever other ridiculous behavior they did isn't amusing or endearing the way it is when Mr. Sulu runs barechested through the Enterprise with a fencing sword; it's just creeps acting creepy in a different way.

From where I sit - sorry Alan - you're missing the point in the exact same way most of the show's naysayers have missed the point. You want the proceedings to be 'amusing or endearing,' to be merely entertaining, and are under the mistaken impression that those are Whedon's intended ends rather than - of course - his misdirecting, ambivalent means.

You really think you've outwitted Whedon here? That a firespitting feminist who created a show about neuroscientist pimps (male and female) 'caring for' brainfucked whores is just out to have a goddamn laugh with this week's episode?

Adele and Topher and Dominic absolutely are the villains of the piece - they're also among the sympathetic lead characters.

My guess is, you've gone into this show assuming it can't possibly be as cruelly ambivalent about its disgusting characters as The Sopranos. Both eyes open you'd have a real surprise coming. Your job isn't to outwit the show - and let's be frank, in a battle of wits between Whedon and ______ I'm betting on Whedon. The man's doing something really disturbing and impressive; credit him.

Chip said...

I gotta say I think we're seeing too much of Caroline, at least this early in the show. having said that, I didn't really like what I saw. As a character shes too annoying to care about and root for her to to get her life back

Marquis said...

"The outfit that Echo wore in this episode was ridiculous. The only way I can process it is to imagine that Joss is doing an intentional callback to Buffy's in!appropriate! outfits from season one of that show."

Nicole never was it more obvious then when she rode up on the motorcycle. then a very abrupt side cut to her off the bike. there was no way she could get off without flashing the campus.

Edd said...

At the same time, this is already the third or fourth instance in seven episodes where the imprinting process has gone awry ... and so this gross and evil institution also seems like a very incompetent organization.

I wonder if the flaws in the process are not an important factor in the story arc. In the pilot, Ms. DeWitt tells Echo she'll be wiped clean like a blank slate. To which Echo replies, |approx. quote| 'Have you ever tried to wipe a slate clean? You can always see what was there."

If the process worked as intended, how could the Dolls ever rebel and free themselves (which surely must be coming, right? I mean we can't just be waiting for FBI Agent Ballard to break in and rescue the damsels!)

Girl Detective said...

I hope Wax Banks is right, and Joss is trying for a much more messy, ambivalent show than most of us can get our head around. Two things. One, in that first scene between Adele and Caroline, there's a reference to some "she" they both knew and seemed to admire. Might it be the prof Caroline saw on campus?

What bugs me about the glitches prevalence is that if they're such a problem for LA, where Topher the tech boss is, how are the other cities dealing with only sub-smart Topher-esques?

Rick said...

Dollhouse's ratings, week-to-week:
2.0, 1.7, 1.6, 1.5, 1.6, 1.6, 1.3.

I hope there's some sort of conclusion in six weeks, because this one won't have a movie.

Edd said...


@Girl Detective said...
I hope Wax Banks is right, and Joss is trying for a much more messy, ambivalent show than most of us can get our head around.


Agreed. The Buffy show was filled with so many reversals. Characters who went through changes, First good, then evil and back again. Layers of motivation which were revealed over seasons. I'm assuming that will occur in "Dollhouse" as well, so DeWitt's having benign motives wouldn't surprise me.

The show is already becoming more entertaining, but I agree with all that it had better get in gear soon or risk cancellation.

I also agree that without enough time to build up any affection for these characters, it was too soon to see Topher and DeWitt goof on that drug.

Although Whedon is known for his "funny," I noticed Jane Espensen was one of the writer/producers this week. She was known for injecting a lot of humor into the Buffy episodes she wrote. She may have been the one behind the humor in the episode.

Fichr said...

So many comments on here must mean there is a lot of interest in the show. But really, it's just not that good. Eliza is just not that good to carry the show. It's getting painfully boring and predictable (at least you can plan on some twist per week along with a bad Echo charecter to be played and another glitch- all right we get it). But, man- is she hot! The college girls I see are more prone to Uggs and sweatpants....

Anonymous said...

"But, man- is she hot! The college girls I see are more prone to Uggs and sweatpants...."

I cringed when she was changing tops in the backup singer episode -- she didn't look slender, she looked sickly.

Pamela Jaye said...

I'd read all the comments to a point and then... there were 3 times as many.

This show is at least more interesting than it was before the famed episode 6 (which I wish had not been touted as it was - it would have been more fun to get there on our own, but let's face it - we would have given up without the carrot. well, I wouldn't have, but only cause of Eliza (hometown girl makes... well, not "good" but... and all that. I've liked her more since they rehabbed her on Angel and Buffy))

Still... even to me it doesn't make sense. (in a stupid plothole...er premisehole kind of way)
It reminds me of The Pretender, except the Pretender made more sense, even if it was convoluted and had to be not missed, in order to even hope to follow it.

How does one run in those shoes?

Oddly, Band Candy was onlt one of the the three that I remember the plot, which speaks less to my age than to my dislike of scifi (and fantasy, Buffy was an aberration). That said, I still didn't care. I just said, oh they caught it too (and then wondered ow it spread, couldn't find an answer and gave up)

I only really like Boyd. What was it he was playing on the piano? Name That Classical Piece is not my forte, and it's bugging me. I like Echo/Caroline a little. I recognized the boyfriend from somewhere but hadn't the energy to find out where.

Anonymous said...

Stop trying to compare this crap-tastic show to Buffy!

Buffy had talented writers on its staff! And Wedon had talent back then.

Anonymous said...

Everone knows Marti Noxon made Buffy what it is.

Tracey said...

@Pamela: His name is Josh Cooke, a native of Philly. I'm not sure where you recognized him from, but I recognized him from the short-lived Committed, which I loved. How can you not dig a show where Tom Poston plays a dying clown living in a woman's closet? The whole ensemble in that show was just so wonderfully weird (although I could have done without the obnoxious villain in the wheelchair). Cooke was the main male character in that show, opposite Jennifer Finnigan, who played such a wonderful ditz and went on to do a number of more serious roles.

JustJoan said...

Forgive me if this has been raised before, but although I try to read most of what is posted here, work and/or life occasionally demand some skimming. When trying to understand just why Adelle is so protective of Echo it came to me that, accent aside, they are related. She spent two years trying to recruit her, surely far longer than she would have spent on just any prospective Active. I'm thinking she and Caroline have a blood relationship, or possibly a step-sibling relationship. Does that resonate with anyone else?

Anonymous said...

This ep just made me think that Caroline is annoying, vapid, arrogant, and shallow, and I like her better as Echo.

And I'm pro-animal rights myself, but she just came across as an embarrassing caricature with nothing solid to hold up her ideals.

maura said...

I'm thinking she and Caroline have a blood relationship, or possibly a step-sibling relationship. Does that resonate with anyone else?

It was just a passing thought for me, but yes. I have to wonder why Caroline wasn't already in jail (I imagine DeWitt has enough contacts to keep her out if she wanted to), and why she would spend two years talking about joining the Dollhouse, if they didn't have some kind of prior relationship.

I liked this episode a lot. Topher finally made me laugh by programming Victor to be superior to Diamond's character. Ha!. Soon enough, I'll go back to hating him with a hot flaming passion.

The constant glitching is something new, isn't it? They would be covering that up in every way they can think of. That, I assume, is why they're still in business. Not that logic and this show have anything to do with each other.

And I'm pro-animal rights myself, but she just came across as an embarrassing caricature with nothing solid to hold up her ideals.

But she's so sincere. :) Eh, I think she's supposed to be all about ideals and radical thought without much to prop them up. And it's not like she was wrong.

I loved Echo's outfit, in a "Oh my God, that's so ridiculous" sort of way. She was, after all, on a Sex Mission.