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Dollhouse, Season 2

Dollhouse, Season 2

By Patrick Samuel • October 9th, 2010
Static Mass Rating: 4/5

Release Date: October 11th, 2010
Certificate: 15
Running Time: 550 minutes

Created by: Joss Whedon

Cast: Eliza Dushku, Harry Lennix, Fran Kranz, Tahmoh Penikett, Enver Gjokaj, Dichen Lachman, Olivia Williams

Season 2 of Joss Whedon’s Dollhouse turns out to be the final season. The show which reunited the creator of the Buffy, Angel and Firefly series with former cast favourites Eliza Dushku (Buffy), Amy Acker (Angel) and Summer Glau (Firefly) was sadly cancelled by Fox earlier this year. In 2009 when it was renewed for a second season, Fox decided to cut the budget, a decision which seems to have greatly affected Dollhouse as a result and in some ways, doomed it.

The show follows the exploits of Echo/Carlone (Dushku) who works for a Los Angeles based organisation known as the Dollhouse who specialise in hiring out “dolls” to wealthy clients. Headed by Adelle DeWitt (Williams) who provides the dolls; volunteers who sign a contract for 5 years allowing the organisation to wipe their minds and program them with whatever personalities their clients whish them to have. As Echo starts o recall fragments of her former life, her personalities begin to merge together. FBI agent Paul Ballard (Penikett) is determined to restore her identity and bring down the Dollhouse for its immoral actions.

The second season picks up Echo walking down the aisle with arms dealer, Martin Klar (Jamie Bamber). Echo is hired out by Paul as way of finally bringing Martin to justice, but as her identities continue to merge it puts her danger. Paul is also forced to deal with his growing feelings for her and her later agrees to become her handler. In the episode “Instinct”, Echo becomes a mother who refuses to let her baby go. Threatened with separation, she takes drastic action to get her baby back. In “Belle Chose”, the identities of 2 dolls get switched around resulting in Echo emerging as a kidnapper on a hunt to kill and her colleague Victor as the carefree college girl she was hired as.

As the next few episodes delve deeper into just how far the Dollhouse reaches into government and politics, they introduce us to Senator Daniel Perrin (Alexis Denisof) as he tries to bring them down. This is turn sets the Dollhouse after him. The episodes also introduce us to Bennett Halverson (Summer Glau) who has a real grudge against Echo for something that happened long ago. We also learn of the real agenda of the Dollhouse with the company behind it all and what they have planned for the world with more advanced technology.

With Echo fully in charge of all her personalities, she has to deal with the murderous villain Alpha (Alan Tudyk) from season 1 once more. But as the end gets closer, we learn who is really behind the Rossum Corporation, a revelation which only comes when Echo is able to finally access all of her original memories.

While the writing and stories woven together in Dollhouse Season 2 are excellent, together with performances by Eliza Dushku, Olivia Williams, Amy Acker and Summer Glau, there seems to be something missing. Each episode is what I would call “talk-heavy” and at times the dialogue is very insightful, but there just doesn’t seem to be enough presence of a musical score to heighten the tension or atmosphere of what is going on. Though this might have given the show an edgier feel, or a sense of realism, unfortunately makes it feel rather flat. This is a real shame considering the stories are really, really good!


• Trailer
• Stills
• Syndicated cast interviews
• Special edition Dollhouse comic

With Dollhouse, Joss Whedon has managed to create a show which focuses strongly on morality, ethics and power. Whereas Buffy and Angel might have been about cause and effect, actions and consequences and Firefly about the nature of terrorism, Dollhouse went further, much further in highlighting some of the things we take for granted such as memories, beliefs and feelings which define our characters.

Despite its budget cut, the show proved what great stories its writers could deliver. Had it been fully supported by Fox, it would have been an amazing 5 year run for Whedon and co.

Patrick Samuel

Patrick Samuel

The founder of Static Mass Emporium and one of its Editors in Chief is an emerging artist with a philosophy degree, working primarily with pastels and graphite pencils, but he also enjoys experimenting with water colours, acrylics, glass and oil paints.

Being on the autistic spectrum with Asperger’s Syndrome, he is stimulated by bold, contrasting colours, intricate details, multiple textures, and varying shades of light and dark. Patrick's work extends to sound and video, and when not drawing or painting, he can be found working on projects he shares online with his followers.

Patrick returned to drawing and painting after a prolonged break in December 2016 as part of his daily art therapy, and is now making the transition to being a full-time artist. As a spokesperson for autism awareness, he also gives talks and presentations on the benefits of creative therapy.

Static Mass is where he lives his passion for film and writing about it. A fan of film classics, documentaries and science fiction, Patrick prefers films with an impeccable way of storytelling that reflect on the human condition.

Patrick Samuel ¦ Asperger Artist

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