20090406

Doll House Episode 7: After Action Report

-The big scary, potentially Zaibatsu style corporation is named Rossum. Apparently Dushku, when her name was Caroline, sought out the corporation, or they found her as a result of something shady.

-At a research lab, three people go crazy. That lab is owned by Rossum. It’s related to a Doom Drug that breaks down inhibition and opens up repressed memory. In our world that’s called “booze.” In the doll house universe it comes in a vile that looks like Gatorade.

-So they need the Actives to get things straight, because they don’t have memories outside of what Topher the Tech gives them. Olivia Williams uses the term "boots on the ground" which I sure is supposed to sound tough, but really sounds like a bureaucrat appropriating war terminology to sound like they know what they're doing.

-Dushku is wearing those white yarn stocking things from opening credits; and she’s going to learn how to ride a motorbike.

-And we drop in on Helo and The Doll Chef, and they have yet another well written, well acted conversation which includes great little lines like “We don’t need to fast forward to the honey moon just because I had a bad day.” And she asks him to drop the case. What is a Helo to do? Snuggles or Justice? Snuggles! Justice! So torn!

-Olivia Williams sends a ton of actives to Rossum to find this missing vile of super Gatorade. Topher programs the Troika Doll to be an NSA agent, outranking Olivia Williams right hand man by a few pay grades. Sierra, the Human Gazelle, has been uploaded with the personality of a CDC doctor. This seems extremely convoluted; but then again if Rossum has a super drug that turns people crazy, they’d want to keep it under wraps.

-Dushku has tied a dude to a bed, and is filming it. It’s a little weird. She tunes in the news by accident, sees it and has a flashback to her old life. She rolls out leaving dude tied to the bed. He’d better get a refund.

-Horribly depressing opening credits.

-Flashbak to Caroline’s old life. She’s loves this dude and it’s rather dull.

-Olivia Williams tell Topher that the CEO of Rossum is a barely competent douche nozzle. No one’s really shocked by such an insinuation in this day and age.

-Dushku rolls up on Troika and his other Doll Boy troopers, and then Harry J. Lennix shows up and this college campus where people are roaming around like they’re on drugs. Duskhu apparently was some sort of activist for some sort of cause that gives her the righteous indignation enough. . . remember it despite having her memory erased. Rossum, was apparently Dushku/Caroline’s primary target before she was even a doll. Now, I know that this stuff is supposed make us think “wow, she’s all, conscientious,” but really if the reason she’s in the dollhouse is because she attempted and failed at an act of anti-corporate terrorism, I find it hysterically funny that’s she’s now a cog in the evil corporation she was trying to shame.

-Dushku was uploaded with a silly girl personality, and Harry J. Lennix also got the silly virus from the Gatorade, which is now apparently contracted through touch.

-The drug kicks in in the office. “What part was believable before?” asks Topher. Williams: “Sarcastic? Unfeeling? British?” and “I find lentils completely incomprehensible.” Topher: “You haven’t seen my drawer of inappropriate starches?!” Who actually appears to be less affected, despite roaming around in his underwear. This episode’s gimmick is austere people acting silly, and it’s actually sort of amusing, but after the previous episode’s momentum, and after they’d more or less wasted so much time before that, these wacky hijinks aren’t really welcome.

-On the college campus, someone recognizes Dushku as Caroline

-Things go down the tubes fast; as it turns out, everyone is affected, because Topher is an idiot and doesn’t know what's he's doing (which should as a surprise to no one at this stage) that they don’t actually erase people’s memories, they just repress them really well. Sierra has a flashback to her ugly recent trauma, and Troika doll has a flashback to an suicide bombing in Nonspecificistan. Olivia Williams’ Head of Security is freaking out as well, while Dushku and a new righteous college student are trying to find something in Rossum’s basement, then the college student in the world turns out to be a corporate spy.

-I really hate the outfit Dushku got saddled with for this episode, I’m not sure why. It’s just seems. . . creepy. It covers enough as to be prim and proper, but whenever she moves is threatens to be revealing, so it's more like a stripper outfit. Coupled with that "I'm a girl tee-hee" personality she has this episode, and we have recipe for creepy. And of course she's got heels on, and she goes tearing around in them like it's the Olympics.

-Harry J. Lennix knocks the corporate spy on his ass, and apparently recovered from the effects of the drug with only the help of some soulful piano playing.

-The end of episodes was like the day after a wild party, where everything is awkward and no one really wants to talk about it.

-The Corporate Spy shows up at Olivia Williams desk, and she says she can offer a monthly stipend so his mother doesn’t loose her house. Apparently the dolls get paid some sort salary.

SUMMARY:

Overall, this episode is better than usual, but not as good as last weeks. What’s really good about last week’s episode is redefined the tone for show, so now we’re seeing these characters in stories in a much better way overall.

A lot of the technical improvements I noticed in "Man on the Street" are now gone, and that's rather a shame, and while this episode felt a lot more briskly paced than the others, the most interesting story arc, Helo and The Chef, got almost no airtime at all.

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