perletwo: twilight nooooooooes! (puppet angel > edward)
[personal profile] perletwo posting in [community profile] scans_daily
I picked up the Dollhouse season 2 DVD box set when it came out Tuesday, and it came bundled with a 21-page mini-comic from Dark Horse. I have scanned for you 7 pages plus the cover.

For those of you who didn't watch the show (RIP, Dollhouse), it was a Joss Whedon trip about a secret L.A. facility in which Actives have their consciousnesses wiped, original personalities saved to hard drive, and neurotech genius Topher designs and uploads a new personality for what they call "engagements" - life coaching, super-ninja action, or romance, whatever. When the engagements are over the new persona is wiped, leaving them in a passive "doll" state. We get to know the staff of the L.A. Dollhouse and about a half-dozen Dolls, chief among them Echo (Eliza Dushku) who quickly shows signs of having more going on in the cranium than Dolls are supposed to. This makes her more and more important as the series goes on.

Season 1 was supposed to end with ep 13, a series-capper in case the show wasn't renewed, but Fox declined to air it. "Epitaph One" was included in the s1 DVD set as an extra, and it quickly became a critical favorite, which helped Dollhouse get its second season. A "10 Years Later" flash-forward, it showed a L.A. ravaged by an apocalypse brought about by the Dollhouse tech. Most everyone has been mindwiped by a signal carried through phone waves, leaving them either "dumbshows" (dolls, basically) or "butchers." A few "actuals" are just trying to survive, and we follow a small band of them into what remains of the Dollhouse. There they learn through the chair some of how the apocalypse came about; people start getting killed; one of their band turns out to be not what they appear; and they load up a body with Echo's original personality Caroline to lead them to the cast-led Resistance. In Season 2 the L.A. crew comes to realize this apocalypse could be the inevitable end-point of their actions and work to prevent it; the series ended with "Epitaph Two," a return to the 10-years-later reality, which comes to pass despite their efforts.

The mini-comic is a slice-of-life following several characters through the events of 10:07 a.m., when the Neuropocalypse struck L.A.

A very pretty cover by Steve Morris. That's Felicia Day as Mag and Zack Ward (of Christmas Story fame!) as Zone, the two Actuals left standing at the end Epitaph One.



We open with a news report referencing "President Perrin" - we met Senator Perrin in season 2 - and tossing to a special report.



Zone and his girlfriend are spending 10:07 discovering that nothin' says lovin' like somethin' in the oven.



The scene ends with girlfriend wandering out to answer the phone....

...and we cut to a normal law office whose busy reception area has many, many ringing phones. A business meeting is interrupted by chaos in the outer office and a homicidal secretary, who takes a header out a window after killing an associate.

Below, Mag (here just plain ole Maggie) is lunching with girlfriends at a sidewalk cafe. She admits under prodding that she's met someone at college. "Give us a name," they insist.





The secretary lands on their table, taking out the girlfriends, and Mag flees.

We take you now to two people we've never met before: Uncle Wendell and nephew Trevor, who is down because he's too short to play basketball, unlike his friends. Wendell reassures him that his friend is a big dumb ox, while Trevor is smart and handy.







Ivy was Topher's neurotech assistant, played by Liza Lapira, who was set to be part of the resistance. Topher sent her away, telling her not to waste her life or her good brain, before they made their last stand against their corporate overlords, and Ivy ran.

The comic concludes with a two-page spread of Mag on a balcony, viewing the chaos in the streets as the Neuropocalypse takes hold.

Story by series scribes Jed Whedon and Marissa Tsncharoen, art by Cliff Richards. What'cha think? I'd buy a series following from this - though Dark Horse's work continuing the Buffy and Angel series haven't really wowed me.

Date: 2010-10-14 01:31 pm (UTC)
equinox216: (Default)
From: [personal profile] equinox216
Sooo... the the plot denouement to Dollhouse was as a |theft of/parallel sequel to| Stephen King's "Cell"?

My wife insisted we watch the first season to completion, but even she, an owner of the complete Buffy series, Firefly, and Dr. Horrible, couldn't stomach the second.

Date: 2010-10-14 03:34 pm (UTC)
equinox216: (Default)
From: [personal profile] equinox216
Cell worked from a disturbingly similar initial premise, 'telephone signal scrambles people's consciousnesses, reverting them to lizard-brain behaviors'. It's done by unnamed terrorists, and slowly the victims start to accrete personality back, though they've been zotted down to some level sufficient to come back as a NETWORK of minds, provided you have enough of them together in one place. By the end of the story, it's 'some people who survived the initial waves and chaotic mindwiped' and 'the telepathic hivemind that grew out of the chaotic mindwiped', but they figure out (sort of) that you may be able to reboot the mindwipes to original save. So, same vector (phone), same attack (mindwipe), similar initial results (dummies and ferals), different consequences (blank disks versus hivemind), similarish cure (mechanical based on original attack).

And Cell was in 2006.

I liked some of the stuff the show was angling towards exploring, but I don't think it executed it in a way that most people wanted to watch. And I'm an avid sci fi reader, so I had examples at mental hand of some of the concepts being done much better, which didn't help.

Having a (literally) tabula rasa main character you CAN'T empathize or identify with because she doesn't really exist as a character, and so has nothing to latch onto (until they dredged her original back up towards the end of the first season, and all the synthesis 'composite' stuff along with) was one of the major execution fails, for me. That, and using Eliza Dushku to try and act distinct multiple personalities every week was kind of like trying to use a sock in place of a Swiss army knife.

Date: 2010-10-14 03:55 pm (UTC)
equinox216: (Default)
From: [personal profile] equinox216
If this kind of information-based post-human exploration interests you, you may also like Richard K. Morgan's Takeshi Kovacs books. People are imprinted on little backup drives implanted against their central nervous systems, allowing for all SORTS of shenanigans. Like interplanetary transmission, and duplication, and resurrection, among others.

We only made it through the first two episodes of s2, so I think we missed the real 'meat' of what people consider the strong points. With enough of a bad taste left over that I don't think we'll go back to look. There's just so much Blank Faces of Male and Female Leads Trying Desperately To Maybe Have Chemistry one can take.

Date: 2010-10-14 03:44 pm (UTC)
equinox216: (Default)
From: [personal profile] equinox216
(Also, while we don't own the Angel set, my wife did sit me down and make me follow all of it as it was airing on TNT a couple years ago, and that puppet episode (re:icon) was golden.)

Date: 2011-04-04 03:05 pm (UTC)
shadowpsykie: Information (Hope Silly)
From: [personal profile] shadowpsykie
heehee "You're a little puppet boy!"
*snarl*

Date: 2011-04-04 03:12 pm (UTC)
shadowpsykie: Information (Default)
From: [personal profile] shadowpsykie
well the exact phrase is "You're a we little puppet man!"

loved Fred's "You're so CUUUTE!" and then they killed her.... (but i also loved Illyria, it gave Amy Acker a completely different character to play, plus, parts of Fred still survived despite the "hollowing out" process)

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