Monday, April 06, 2009

Dollhouse: Needs

This episode's joke is brought to you by caffeine and the glee of knowing SHARDS waits in my agent's inbox.

Ok, it's about to degrade into mythos/endgame ponderings...

1) How can you not love an organization that stages an escape to test their employees? The House thrives on its god complex.

2) Yet another example of how this show is fueled by the duplicity of characters—and there being more beneath the surface of what we're shown. This is why I keep insisting we are headed for serious mindf***ery as the season ends. You don't write this kind of a show and not go for the brain-stabby twist.

3) Dr. Fred's cleverness places her as sneaky spy suspect #1. Sneaky spy suspect #2 is still Ivy, Topher's assistant. (On the TV basis of why did you mention a character by name who's only on screen twice for no apparent plot reason?)

4) So Escape From the Dollhouse isn't our endgame. I say this because it seems contradictory of the show to claim it has given the characters (and us) closure only to re-open the possibility of escape. Then again, if you wipe the memories of the characters, can they really have closure? Or are we getting into one of those CLAMP-esque "the body remembers what the mind cannot" themes?

5) For the fun of "Topher's a Spy!"—we agreed didn't work, but it's still interesting to explore—I pose a question: Topher knew this was all a test, but was the gun that Echo carried actually loaded? I ask to determine how good of an actor Topher is. If he wasn't in danger, then there's a higher possibility he could be the spy.

Remember: the preview shows the spy chip thingie is found in his equipment. (Cuz Ivy put it there, no doubt.)

6) Dr. Fred said, "I'm not your friend in here." Where are you Echo's friend? Tell us!

7) Why was the file on FBI Paul in Dr. Fred's office and not Adele's? Was it planted there, or is there another reason that the caretaker of the doll's health has a file that it seems more logical to store with the caretaker of the Dollhouse's health?

7.5) If the file is planted, please tell me, what does the Dollhouse gain from further engaging Paul? What have they gained from survalliance and engagment of him in the first place? Previous to being shot, what was the motivation that kept him investigating the dollhouse when the first thing we see is his superiors telling him to back off?

8) Is Paul on the fast-track for recruitment... or he is a doll already? After all, how much do we know about him beyond his relationship with Mellie and his job? Have we seen any photos of family? Met friends? For a secondary protagonist, his personal life is suspiciously sparse.

9) Topher had a glow pen. Glow pens are way more awesome than flashlights.

8) I love Victor more and more with each episode.


Sarah K said...

Your captionn made me giggle.

1. They weren't testing their employees; they were making the most glitchy actives fight to find whatever it was that they were needing closure on. Although yes, major god-complex here.

2. This show is like an ogre. It has layers. It's likely to get really messy when they're peeled.

3. I like Dr. Fred as the spy, but I'm not convinced. It seems to obvious. I'm liking Adele.

4. The closure for those four that escaped wasn't getting out, it was facing the thing that was making them glitch. For Sierra it was her oppressor, for November it was the death of her daugter. Victor needed to let Sierra know how he felt, and Echo needed to save someone [or several someones].

I think the issue was those memories weren't being properly wiped because they were to potent for them to forget without having that closure. Kind of like what happens in the last book of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the galaxy. They couldn't destroy earth in all realities until they finished off every pesky little creature that was supposed to be there when it exploded. I culd probably make this comparison better with more time, but I'm on my lunch break.

5. Echo's gun was loaded. She shot the chair at least once, when Adele came in the room. Just because Topher was seriously under duress there doesn't mean he's not the spy. Truth be told, many of the things that he said could be construed as a spy spilling what he knows. I can help you, we're trying to help, blablablab. Although that doesn't fit quite right, since the spy probably doesn't really think they do much good of worth there.

I still want to know what research they are funding. Dammit.

6. I thought the same thing about Dr. Fred when she said that. Also, I think that she's maybe not a bad guy because if she wants to take care of all the actives that involves making sure they aren't sent to the Attic, whatever it is, right? So its in their best interests that she do this closure thing with them to keep them safe from that fate which is never put in a friendly manner.

7. It never occured to me about the file. I'll have to think on that.

8. I doubt he's a doll. That just doesn't make much sense. Who's his handler? Why don't they just make him disappear? I think they want him recruited, but they have to stage things so that he'll need to escape his current life first.

9. I just thought it was an led glow stick. Which is still super awesome. Especially the way he turned it off before tossing it aside when the lights came back on.

8. I've loved Victor for a while.

Sarah K said...

oh, and 7.5: I don't know the motivation factor entirely, but his superiors weren't telling him to back off the dollhouse case. They were telling him to keep away from some gang case because Paul had a lead on his Dollhouse case that crossed over another department. And his superiors considered the mob case more 'real' than his 'chasing-down-an-urban-legend' case, and just didn't want the mob case ruined. Or something like that.

It wasn't that clear what was going down. But interestingly, Paul's lead that crossed over the mob case lead him to Lubov, who was really Victor, and well. Neat.

8. [The first 8, not the Victor-is-Awesome 2nd 8]. Other reasons why Paul is not a likely Active: Why have November there to pull at his heart strings if they can both be called in for a treatment at any time? Why bother giving him as genuine a lead as they did in Victor engaged as Lubov if he was already an Active himself?

Although I do enjoy the idea of managing to get an Active into the FBI. Talk about a great in.

Chandra Rooney said...

Jeez, Sarah, why do you have to be so attentive to details and right about stuff? :P

Hmm... Adele as the spy would be interesting, but I'm not certain. It would be surprising.

I also give you +10 MP for referencing Douglas Adams.

Do you think this Dollhouse-funded research will be the focus for future seasons?

Yes, Paul is unlikely a doll. Just like he's unlikely Alpha... but it's still fun to think about, ne?

Sarah K said...

I sometimes will go back to rewatch bits I was unclear on, and truth be told, sometimes Mr. B. and I have had to hit pause to figure out how we were interpreting events that unfolded because one or the other of us was confused.

I appreciate the MP for Douglas Adams referencing, even though I don't think I did a very good job of explaining what I was seeing in my head.

I see that Shrek referencing isn't worth points though.

It is fun to speculate, and my current speculation leads me to believe that Paul is being groomed to either become a doll himself, or a handler.

I think the Dollhouse funded research is going to be a clincher somewhere, the unexpected exclamation point to all the duplicity and awful things that seem to be going on.

Also, Adele seems unlikely--she doesn't seem to have the technological know-how, but it would be an excellent twist, I think.

Chandra Rooney said...

Unfortunately, no, Shrek references do not earn you MP.

Here's an interesting follow-up to Paul as a handler. If we speculate that he becomes Echo's handler... something BAD happens to Boyd, right?

Sarah K said...

If he becomes Echo's handler, than yes, that would be the case. But does he need to be Echo's handler? He could be Sierra's new handler. Or the handler for that dude that got conscripted at the end of the hilarious drug episode. [No kids, Drugs are Bad. Watch this episode of hilarity that proves our point....]

I don't want to think about bad things happening to Boyd. I like him. He's one of the nice bad people.

Chandra Rooney said...

Speaking of which... when are we going to see Whatshisface in the Dollhouse?

Sarah K said...

What's his face? Alpha? I think they're saving that for the last couple of episodes.

I don't know another what'shisface you could be referring to. Or can't think of one anyhow.

Chandra Rooney said...

This whatshisface refers to dude who was recruited in Echoes.

Sarah K said...

In reference directly to that dude that I mentioned in the above post. Totally on it now.

I don't know. I hope soon. It would be a shame to have shown us that and not have him show up.