Monday, October 12, 2009

What I’m Watching: Dollhouse

Dollhouse: Season 2, Episode 3 “Belle Chose” (B-)

How many times is Echo going to malfunction? I realize that the show is now focused almost exclusively on Topher trying too many technological enhancements (in this case, the very risky remote wipe), but it would be nice if Echo could actually complete one of her assignments successfully. Before realizing that Echo and Victor’s imprints had been swapped, I was furious to see Echo stab the professor instead of sleeping with him as she was supposed to do. The Dollhouse must be earning a terrible reputation, and Echo, were she not the star of the series, would certainly have been taken off active duty, and at the very least kept far away from the more dangerous missions. But the show could really be much more lively, exciting, and most importantly, fulfilling, if Echo was actually getting something accomplished on her assignments, rather than just shopping for clothes and (not) sleeping with men. The casting of a grizzled Matt Winston as the fashion guy is an inspired choice, and he provides some nice comic relief to go with Paul’s distaste for waiting around while Echo creates a new wardrobe. Victor’s dancing isn’t anything great, and he’s a very skilled dramatic actor who should be used more for situations like the ones in the first season, like the escape from the Dollhouse and the release of the laughing toxin. The most regrettable misstep in this episode is the misuse of Michael Hogan (“Battlestar Galactica” and recently seen on “Warehouse 13”). He doesn’t even have a good line, let alone a good scene. Why bother to cast such an iconic sci-fi actor if he’s not even going to get to do anything?

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