Monday, December 28, 2009

Knowing when you will die: Dollhouse

If you knew when you were going to die and couldn't stop it, you would do things differently, right? Me, I would most likely do some stupid stuff like go skydiving or watch Lost. You know, things you would never do unless you knew you were doomed (sidenote: Of course, we are all doomed, we are all going to die, but knowing the specifics...). Of course, I have plans in place to ensure that mankind can be saved from the zombie outbreak if I pass. My plans to rescue what loved ones I can have been passed on to trusted associates. Oh, and I've started thinking about a will. You know, important stuff. But if I actually knew that I would die three years from now crowd-surfing at a Jethro Tull cover band concert, I might speed up those plans.

I had a point... where is it.

Dollhouse, Dollhouse, Doll-freaking-house.

Of course it was going to be cancelled one day, all show are. The fact that his name was attached to it and it was pretty out there/cerebral kind of insists that it die sooner rather than later. The big deal here is that Fox did something awesome. (That hurt my brain). First, they took a chance to extend the show a second season - one of the biggest surprise renewals evah. Then, after about four episodes of the second season, they announced their plans to cancel.

Did you know that after some guys at Fox cancelled Firefly (more Whedon), Futurama, and Family Guy, all of those series came back in one form or another. Even better: those guys at Fox got canned. Firefly fans will always mourn that series. The definition of ended before it's time. It's like Joss hooks us in with all the clever bits, intriguing characters, and mysterious plotlines, then Fox stole the rest of it like taking a screwdriver from a baby. A serious, techno-wizard baby that could - nay, should - spawn a film or three!

Oh yeah, I was saying: Fox told Mutant Enemy that Dollhouse was canned in time for the writers to change the direction of the series! I guess the cubic asstons of angry Firefly fans (and potential increase of DVD sales) gave Fox the idea to let Whedon and Co finish the series - with style.

And so far, it's gorgeous. It's exciting. It's some fantastic television that I will look back on in a number of years and very likely say it was some of the best TV I've seen. I'm still in that passionate, love phase.. I'll wait to announce the true brilliance once I come down off my "That was so awesome"-high. We knew it was going to be cancelled. There wasn't much of a hope. Stop you internet petitions (They sometimes don't work, you know) and your Fox bashing and look at the facts. Dollhouse wasn't making cash, isn't going to pull in new fans, and will make more money on DVD anyway. So let the fine folks make it an awesome DVD set.

Whedon fans have watched Dr Horrible. Intense Whedon fans have read Astonishing X-Men. We know what happens when Joss and the brilliant people he chooses to work with are given autonomy and a timeline. Arguably, Dr Horrible and Astonishing are his best completed stories. He wasn't trying to entertain the masses, he was entertaining himself. And his fans. And his team. They had control and they produced brilliance. With the foresight to change the end of Dollhouse and adapt his Five-Year plan, we are in for something astonishing. And remember to follow the people into their other projects. Google some people: Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon, Maurissa Tancharoen, Tim Minear, Andrew Chambliss, Tracy Bellomo. They are your storytellers. Go hear their stories.