February 16, 2009

My First Impressions of Dollhouse

I don't think I've mentioned to you all that I do like Joss Whedon's stuff.  Not entirely, I never was a Buffy fan.  But I do like his work enough to feel that nerd obligation to watch Dollhouse.  I caught it on hulu.com because it's easier to finish my work on my own time and then watch the show.

What did I think of it? Not a strong enough start for this show.  It was a good episode, but there was nothing to hook me in permanently.  Especially the first 15 minutes.  I understand the exposition that was necessary, but I really think the writers could've done better than a "best date weekend ever" scenario.  I just didn't care.  The main plot line we finally got into after the first commercial break was good, but I had to warm up to it since I was meeting a ton of characters in succession without any breaks.  

Now the drama major in me comes out to say that the acting isn't impressing me either.  Eliza Dushku isn't a bad actress, and there isn't any reason why she shouldn't be on the show.  But I think her versatility with the multiple people she will have to play will take time.  Lots of time.  Should we fault her for that?  No, fault casting really.  Everyone else seems to be cast well, and I do believe all the other characters.  I just think that considering the personality changes Echo  went through, her facial expressions could've been more varied.  Or maybe it's just her face.  I'll debate this with myself later.

As I said before I didn't get a lot of time to get into the characters.  For me personally, this is why I watch television shows: the characters.  I want to get to know them and think about how I can relate to them.  It's hard to do that on a show where the main character loads in a different personality each week.  I didn't get into Whedon until Firefly and when I saw the first episode of that I saw why people got sucked into his stuff.  It's a lot of great "what if" ideas along with a bunch of characters that you really want to becomes friends with.  Or smash in with a sledgehammer, depending on who you're talking about.  I'm not getting that same vibe with Dollhouse.  I'm not that interested in the characters around Echo because I only know them as two-dimensional plot-pushers right now.  The episode didn't let me see much of anyone else other than Echo, and that chick doesn't even know who she is half the time.  How am I supposed to relate to that?

I'm not ruling out Dollhouse completely.  I will probably watch the next episode to see if I care enough about the show to keep up with it.  But right now, I don't think I do.

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