The Chicago Tribune’s Maureen Ryan just posted a fascinating interview with Joss Whedon, about the final days of his doomed series Dollhouse – one of the more intriguing shows on TV today.
It’s a lengthy chat, that goes beyond Dollhouse to also talk about Dr. Horrible, the writers’ strike, Glee – which he’ll be directing in March – as well as his bid to revive the Terminator franchise. But what struck me most about Whedon’s answers concerning Dollhouse is how Fox was always unsure of how to promote the series. And more than that: Whedon says he was rebuffed when he wanted to take the series deeper into issues of sexuality and intimacy. “Fox sort of has that reputation for ‘sexy’ or ‘edgy’ or blah blah blah, but they don’t actually want that and it frustrates me,” Whedon tells Ryan in the transcript.
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If that’s really true, how frustrating for Whedon’s fans. Dollhouse’s willingness to confront the same questions posed by Hitchcock in Vertigo and Spielberg in A.I., about what we see in others – who they really are, or who we want them to be – was smart and refreshing. They were also quite relevant to the series’ premise. But Whedon says “Basically, the show didn’t really get off the ground because the network pretty much wanted to back away from the concept five minutes after they bought it.”
I’m secretly hoping that another network might pick it up; but until that happens, fans still have a handful of episodes to check out. Ryan touches on that too – singling out the episodes set to air on the 11th and 18th.
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