Some Thoughts on Dollhouse #7

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I’m not going to jump into the whole Dollhouse-recapping dogpit. It’s too much work and other people are too good at it. So as usual I’m just going to offer some stuff that occurred to me while I was watching this week’s episode. Complete episode is here.

— Victor: that actor is really growing on me. When he first showed up I thought he was just a hilarious throwaway character, as the big-pimpin’ Russian gangster who Ballard leans on. (“Dollhouse! Dollhouse! It’s fun to say!”) For one thing his Russian accent was really good. But now that he’s recurring he seems to bring a little extra something to each of his engagements. Sweet to see him pull rank on whatshisname, Dominic, because he thinks he’s from the N.S.A. (Lose the tinted shades though. I mean, dude.)

— Great to see Mellie finally turn up actually in the Dollhouse, confirming what we already knew. One of us. Though looking ahead to the rest of the series, there’s gotta be a limit to how many times they can play the I-didn’t-know-he/she-was-a-doll-but-it-turns-out-he/she’s-a doll card. I mean, how many dolls are there? There’s only so many hideaway floor-beds to go round.

— Though there are other Dollhouses out there. Series prediction: one of the Dollhouses breaks away, tries to go independent, and the rest of them have to beat it down.

— Random cavil: if the Rossum Corporation is so huge and powerful, is Topher really their best bet for coming up with an antidote to their toxic new super-drug?

— There ought to be an entry in TV Tropes for the episode where, for whatever reason, everybody acts all crazy and out of character, a la The Naked Now. The closest thing I could find is “Let Us Never Speak of This Again.” But when it works it really works, as it did with Topher and Olivia Williams (I can only think of her as Olivia Williams for some reason, not Adelle DeWitt) — the whole thing was incredibly hilarious. The fact that she kept climbing over the balcony railing in that skirt is impressive all on its own.

— That said, the problem I’m having with Dollhouse, increasingly, is that it gets the unimportant stuff hilariously right, and the heavy stuff … eh. For example: I’m just not shocked that the Dollhouse has ties to a giant, heartless pharmaceuticals corporation. Hey, who doesn’t these days? Likewise Echo’s past as a campus animal rights activist. Sure, it makes sense logically enough, but it doesn’t exactly hit me where it counts. It sucks that her boyfriend died while they were trying to save the monkeys. But I’d only known him for about 20 minutes. I’m just not that torn up about it.

— And is it just me, or did Echo and her pals plan a raid on a campus laboratory with all the righteous zeal of a bunch of sorority girls planning a panty raid? (Or whatever it is sorority girls plan.) It felt off.

— I’m worried about Echo’s boyfriend. Is he still tied up on the bed? I need closure.

— p.s. Dollhouse is safe through the rest of the season.