Okay, who’s up for a new season of Dollhouse? Come on, we’re going to catch up with all our friends from last season, and watch Eliza Dushku bring down an international arms dealer using only three facial expressions. So make the jump and let’s get to the good stuff.
Hi everyone, I’m Waffleboy and I’ll be your recapper for this season of Dollhouse. Just so you know I’ve been a big, big fan of this show since, let me see, about 10 days ago when the DVD’s showed up at my apartment from Netflicks. Still, after watching a complete season in one week, I am totally on board and will be parked in front of my TV every Friday night at nine o’clock.
Okay, if you haven’t watched Dollhouse before and you really want to know what’s going on, your best bet is to get a hold of the Season 1 DVD’s. Seriously, the plot on this show is pretty complex, but here are the barest of bare basics to get you going.
The Dollhouse is a place in an evil corporation where they keep people who are totally void and without personalities. Yeah, I know, where I work we call that the accounting department too. Anyway, these people are called “dolls” or “actives” and the reason the evil corporation keeps them around is because they can put the personality on anyone they want into them and then rent the actives out to super duper rich people.
The best active in the Dollhouse is Echo and she just happens to be played by the show’s star, Eliza Dushku. The dollhouse is run by a very precise British woman named
Adelle DeWitt. The guy who handles all the science stuff is called Topher, and he is what you would get if you combined Bart Simpson and Doctor Frankenstein, and then fed him about 200 pixie sticks. For the record I like Topher a lot. The head of security is a guy named Boyd Lamont, who was Echo’s handler right up until they found out the last head of security was an agent with the NSA. Boyd got the job after they sucked the brains out of the last guy and sent his body to the “attic.” As you’ve probably figured out, they’re not big on written warnings at the dollhouse.
The big story line last season was about an FBI agent trying to expose the dollhouse. The good news is he finally got inside it in the final episode of the season. The bad news is he had already gotten fired from the FBI and the guy he broke into the dollhouse with was a former active named Alpha.
Alpha is a psychopathic lunatic who kidnapped Echo so he could put 39 personalities in her head at the same time so she would be just like him and they could live happily and crazily ever after. Too bad for him Echo wasn’t ready to settle down and proceeded to whomp on his melon like it was a piÃ±ata and she was jonesing for Chiclets. Alpha took off and Boyd and former Special Agent Ballard took Echo back to the dollhouse. See? I’m telling you the DVD’s make a lot more sense and you’ll get to watch some pretty kickass TV too. Anyway, on with Season 2.
Our episode starts with Echo in the chair. Yay the chair! Okay, granted on this show the chair is a device used to strip away the very souls of people, but on the other hand if we are watching somebody in the chair it means new episodes of Dollhouse, which beats watching CSI Altoona over on CBS, so yay!
Echo is talking with her new d-bag handler who I’m not planning on getting attached to because he doesn’t have a name and Agent Paul Ballard is being all protective of Echo with Topher, and Topher correctly points out that Agent Paul Ballard is just Paul Ballard now. He’s right, but Paul Ballard is always going to be Agent Pucker Face to me.
Topher tells Agent Pucker Face that Echo is fine, and Topher totally got rid of all of those 39 personalities that Alpha crammed in her noggin at the end of last season. Topher knows this is true because gosh darn it, this is the Dollhouse and everything works perfectly at the Dollhouse. This is right when Topher’s computer starts wigging out and showing a clip from The Bride of Frankenstein. Topher figures out that Doctor Saunders sabotaged his PC, and handles the situation the way any man would; he storms off to take a nap.
Adelle DeWitt, the big boss lady, and her head of security Boyd Lamont are walking through the dollhouse having a talk about Agent Pucker Face. Boyd doesn’t trust him. DeWitt doesn’t really see where this is applicable, because Agent Pucker Face is crushing for Echo big time so they can control him through her. She thinks this is a better option then having Boyd do something “extreme” at this point and she is polite enough not to point out that she is the big boss lady so Boyd’s opinion is only slightly more valuable then mine.
Somebody got a new hairstyle, do we like? Yes or No?
Victor comes walking by and DeWitt checks out his scars which are almost all gone thanks to
the script, the surgery they have been doing on him off camera to fix what happened to him when Alpha went all Mark of Zorro on him last season. So the good news is we’re probably only maybe two episodes tops, away from Enver Gjokaj, the guy who plays Victor, unleashing a brand new shitty accent on us.
DeWitt sends Victor away, and Boyd grumbles about how wrong and twisted Echo’s gig is this week. The camera promptly cuts to Echo getting married to some guy. The some guy in question is sporting a hair helmet you usually on see on a soap opera, and just to make him even more annoying he’s got a British accent. He and Echo exchange wedding vows and we cut to the opening credits.
My hair is better then yours
By the way, if any of you are wondering why every shot of the opening credits is of Eliza Dushku, even though this show has a strong ensemble cast with about eight actors who are on every week, you might want to take it up with the show’s producer, Eliza Dushku.
We come back from the credits and Topher is all done with his nap and ready to get back to evil geniusing. He gives Ivy a hard time, because Topher is kind of a tool when you get right down to it, and Sierra comes wandering in dressed up like Jackie O when she was Jackie Kennedy and speaking in a posh British accent about how she was promised a treatment. Ivy tells Sierra she’ll be right with her and Sierra tries to get Topher, because she doesn’t like “Orientals.” Ivy gets the same look every person gets hearing this information from someone who is half-Tibetan. Topher says he needs caffeine, so it looks like Sierra is poop out of luck.
What a dreary little hovel
As Ivy is getting Sierra into the chair Sierra mentions that if Ivy were to tie her and spank her, Sierra couldn’t stop her. Ivy wins the poker face of the week award for immediately coming back with, “I’ll keep that in mind.” This is one of those occasional Dollhouse moments that make me wish this show was on HBO or Showtime instead of Fox.
Thinking to herself, this bitch is straight out bugging yo!
Topher is heading over to the cupboards to get that sweet, sweet caffeine but when he opens them up, they are full of rats. Topher squeals and hops up on the railing, because he’s
a little bitch, not comfortable around creatures that carry the bubonic plague.
While Ivy is gathering up rats (and now don’t you feel better about your job now?), Topher gets on the phone to his tormentor, Doctor Saunders. Although, Doctor Saunders found out at the end of last season that she is actually an active called Whiskey who had the Doctor Saunders personality imprint put into her when Alpha killed the last doctor at the Dollhouse. As you’ve figured out by now, she’s a little cranky about this, so from now on I’m calling her Whiskey Sour.
Topher tells Whiskey Sour to quit messing with him and to stop acting crazy. Whiskey Sour tells Topher if she is a little loco en de la cabeza it must because he made her that way and to get the rats back in the maze before he gets bit. Okay, Topher and Whiskey Sour, cutest couple, show of hands?
Whiskey Sour ends her phone call when Boyd comes in her office. It turns out Boyd is there to ask her out to dinner. Why Boyd you smooth daddy you! Way to work the inter-office romance thing, you old dog. Of course we’re also going to see Boyd in HR in about three episodes getting a talking too about sexual harassment of artificial employees.
Whiskey Sour isn’t buying, because she doesn’t leave the dollhouse. It turns out she doesn’t like open spaces, crowds, or sunlight. Get that woman a bathrobe, TVgasm just found its newest blogger!
Whiskey Sour also points out that Boyd didn’t really like her when he thought she was just a normal everyday human, but now that he knows she’s an active he’s all in a hurry to get her back to his place. Boyd gives her a pep talk on how people change, but at the end of it he’s still going to be drinking that bottle of two buck chuck all by his lonesome tonight. Awwww.
Back at the wedding, we see some creepy Russian dude talking into a cell phone. We find out he works for the HHSOD (Hair Helmet Soap Opera Dude). Hmmm, creepy Russian dude who talks cryptically into cell phones, I am not guessing HHSOD owns a successful chain of Arbys somewhere.
What the well dressed henchman will be wearing this season
Meanwhile the HHSOD and Echo are dancing and doing the whole “I wuv you, no I wuv you!” bit that you are supposed to do on your wedding day. I guess we’ll have to wait for the DVD and outtake scenes to see Echo screaming at the HHSOD to quit talking to his creepy little Russian friend and move his ass so they can take a picture gazing into each other’s eyes by the reflecting pool, and to be sure to say hi to her Aunt Sassy and not to stare at the growth on her neck, and whatever he does, if her Uncle Zack asks HHSOD if he wants to wrestle, just say no! Do all families’ weddings end up Cops or just mine? Really? Hey, who wants to talk TV?
Anyway, Echo complains about her heels and the HHSOD tells her to just take them off. Echo says no way, she’s not taking them off until her wedding night, and thanks to the magic of editing we cut to her and the HHSOD making the sweet, sweet love later that night. Okay, it’s network TV so they mainly hug each other under a blanket on a bed but you get the idea.
In yet another meanwhile, Agent Pucker Face is sitting in a dingy room, eating Chinese food, doing pushups, and probably imaging Echo and the HHSOD having hot sweaty monkey love that the FCC would shut the whole show down in a heartbeat if any of it ended up on TV.
I’m not jealous, I just really hate this pen
But that really doesn’t matter, because thanks to the magic of editing it’s the next day and Echo is shopping up a storm. She goes into this little new age shop, ducks down a hallway and steps into a dingy office and there waiting for her is old Agent Pucker Face himself.
It turns out thanks to Echo’s imprint she thinks she’s a bad ass undercover agent, and she and Agent Pucker Face are working to bust the HHSOD, who just happens to be a major international arms dealer. The only problem with their plan is even though Echo got the HHSOD to marry her, he still hasn’t done anything illegal yet. Echo thinks he’s getting ready to sell some dirty bombs, and they can catch him and make the big bust they’ve been working so hard for.
Agent Pucker Face then says something about them running away forever and ever after that. Okay, show of hands, who else thinks it’s about time Agent Pucker Face gets out of the dingy office for awhile?
It’s just then that Echo’s asshat handler comes through the door and says Echo needs a treatment. Agent Pucker Face doesn’t think it’s a good idea but asshat handler says they need to check her wiring, and her plumbing. See, I told you the dude is an asshat.
In the script he’s referred to as D-bag #1. Okay, he isn’t, but he should
Back at the dollhouse Whiskey Sour is giving Echo a physical, and Echo flashes back to them being at some fancy party and making out in front of everybody. Echo calls Whiskey Sour Whiskey, which freaks her out to no end because Echo isn’t supposed to be able to remember what day it is, let alone them auditioning for MTV’s A Shot at Love. Echo then asks Whiskey Sour why Alpha sliced her face up. Whiskey Sour immediately goes from freaked to pissed and reminds Echo it was so Echo could be “number 1.” Whiskey Sour’s hand kind of runs over some scalpels that just happen to be sitting there, but pulls out a lollypop instead, which she doesn’t give to Echo. Hmmm, no lolly, but no face slicing, am I the only one wishing I was in Echo’s HMO right now?
Up in DeWitt’s office she and Boyd are watching some Senator on TV who is making a big stink about their parent company, the Rossum Corporation. DeWitt asks Boyd what he thinks, and after he does some forensic psychology based on the guy’s suit and tells her he thinks Agent Pucker Face is feeding the guy information.
Hey, speak of the devil! Agent Pucker Face just happens to walk through the door. Boyd lets APF know he thinks he’s got loose lips and then exits stage right, which is just as well because DeWitt wants to have a little talk with Agent Pucker Face.
Oh and just for the record, I had an unhealthy attraction to Echo way before you showed up buddy
She wants Agent Pucker Face to come on board and be Echo’s handler. Agent Pucker Face doesn’t want to do this because he’s way better at being a pretend cop then he ever was as a real one, and besides there is no way he’d sign up with Team Bad Guys. DeWitt points out he’s got an unhealthy obsession, he might as well get paid for it. You know, she’s got a point, because this logic is the only explanation for why we have hockey announcers. Agent Pucker Face is still all thanks but no thanks, and leaves so he can get back to fake law enforcement.
Back at Newlywed Central, the HHSOD gets a phone call from his creepy Russian assistant, who we find out is named Hugo. Hugo? Who the hell names their kid Hugo? There are only two reasons to name a child Hugo: (A), you’re angling to get on the good side of your rich great uncle who lives in the haunted mansion up on the hill, or (3), you want to give your child a leg up in the lucrative evil henchman field.
Anyway, Hugo wants to powwow, but the HHSOD no can do, because Echo just walked through the door and it’s time for a little more Joy de Sexo. Can you believe I only got a C in high school Spanish? You know it’s all political, right?
Not the hair! Do not ever touch the hair!
Hugo’s a little disappointed, because he just happens to have a mess of pictures of Echo and Agent Pucker Face in some parking lot some where. Well who cares? I mean what are the odds of this coming up in the plot again?
Back at the dollhouse, Topher is sleeping. Yes again, he didn’t sleep at all last season, so he’s entitled to stack some Z’s tonight. The only thing is he isn’t going to because some hot scantily clad chick has crawled into bed with him and is totally rubbing up against all his naughty parts. Topher wakes up, and oh Snapple, the rubber in question is Whiskey Sour. Topher freaks out because
the other women he’s been with are all inflatable, Whiskey Sour hates him. Whiskey Sour says this is what makes it a challenge, blah, blah, blah and points out Topher’s little scientist is wide awake and ready for a trip to the lab. Topher gets out from underneath her, and then Whiskey Sour and Topher have a really great scene that we will get into at the end of the post, but the important thing to remember right now is they don’t get freaky, freaky, and that Topher does not have wet dreams while thinking about Fozzy Bear.
But honestly, could you blame him if he did? Wacka, Wacka, Wacka
We cut over to Echo who wakes up and sees that the HHSOD is nowhere to be found. Echo decides this is a perfect time to get her Nancy Drew on, and guess who happens to walk up behind her when she’s breaking into the HHSOD’s desk? What? No, not Fozzy Bear, Jesus, get your mind out of the gutter. The HHSOD comes into the room behind her and catches her with a nasty case of the red handed.
Echo tries to talk her way out of it, and the HHSOD responds by slamming her head into the desk. I’m guessing Hugo got a chance to show off the results of his latest photo shoot. Either that, or he just spent some time reading the Ike Turner autobiography, Womens be Thinking Too Much.
Mother was right, I should have married Hugo!
Oh, he talked to Hugo, that makes sense; the guy doesn’t look like a big reader. He starts teeing off on Echo and telling her he knows she’s hooked up with Agent Pucker Face. Echo pulls out all the stops and gets the HHSOD convinced that she’s never heard of Agent Pucker Face and she’s totally in love with every non-mobile hair on his head. How is Eliza Dushku able to pull this off and get the HHSOD to ignore a mountain of obvious evidence? Hmmm, is it because (a) Eliza Dushku-little is a kickass actress, or (b) she’s the star of the show and has a producer’s credit. Hey, what was your answer? A? You know what? I like you, guess again, I won’t tell.
Look at the nostrils flaring and tell me I’m lying!
She’s got the HHSOD totally on board and by the look on his face he’s figuring out how many “one free backrub” cards he’s going to have to give her to get out of this little mistake, when Echo forgets her own name. The HHSOD gets seriously steamed and pulls Echo off camera.
We cut to her and the HHSOD sitting in the back of his town car in front of his private jet at the airport, and I’m calling shenanigans on this one. A town car? What kind of self-respecting international arms dealer who’s about to sell a whole mess of dirty bombs doesn’t spring for a stretch?
Actually maybe the town car is a good idea, because the improbabilities just keep coming. Not only has the HHSOD not killed Echo yet, he’s decided this is the perfect time to lay out his complete master plan to her. Hmmm, I’m guessing this guy is a correspondence school graduate of the James Bond Super Villain course. Oh and his C? Totally not political.
Actually this little trip into exposition land does have a benefit. It allows Agent Pucker Face to get on the phone and have a little chat with Topher. APF tells Topher he’s worried about Echo because he hasn’t heard from her and her asshat handler blew him off. Topher hits some keys on his computer and yep, Echo’s in pain and afraid. Topher is all set to call in the Dollhouse’s crack goon squad, but Agent Pucker Face tells him he can’t or Echo will get killed. Topher asks Agent Pucker Face if he has a better idea, and he says no, but he has a worse one.
Whoo boy, Agent Pucker Face sure wasn’t kidding. He surrenders to the bad guys. The HHSOD gets out his town car, so he can rough APF up a bit and gloat. While he’s wailing on APF Echo’s personalities start skipping like a scratched LP on a cheap turntable (kids feel free to ask your parents about that reference if it’s before your time. Oh and also feel free to get the hell off my lawn! Love Waffleboy)
The HHSOD is kind of weirded out by this, but Agent Pucker Face tells him Echo cracked and uses this as an excuse to whack her in the head until he gets to her badass kung fu girl personality from last season. Kung fu Echo proceeds to open a jumbo sized can of gurl power whoopass on the HHSOD and his mooks.
Oh man, a girl got your gun? The other mooks are never going to let you live this one down
The HHSOD decided to bag it and takes off in his town car. Too bad for him Echo hops on the hood as he’s driving out of the hanger. He starts swerving the car and shooting at Echo and pretty much throwing the standard hissy fit that all bad guys throw when the good guy, or in this case girl hops on the hood of their getaway cars. Why do they do this? What possible harm can someone accomplish hanging on to the hood of your car? Oh wait, Echo has one of those little bomb thingamajigs, never minds. Anyway, Echo tosses the bomb thingamajig in the car, then she rolls off the hood and the HHSOD jumps out of the car, and then (wait for it), BOOM! The HHSOD is now the proud owner of a flaming town car.
The HHSOD tries to pull a gun on Echo but she gives him a wicked head butt and tells him he’s busted. Wow, looks like Hugo will be entering the job market real soon. Finally, Agent Pucker Face shows up. Useless much?
We cut back to the Dollhouse where Echo is coming out of her treatment. DeWitt makes another job pitch to Agent Pucker Face and he is the male lead, and this is the best excuse to keep him on the show, so he signs up with Team Bad Guys. I think the best way to look at this is fake law enforcement’s loss is evil corporations’ gain.
Boyd stops by Whiskey Sour’s office to see what Topher has that he doesn’t. Two words mi hermano, kickass sweater vests. The only thing is Whiskey Sour isn’t there. She’s left a note that she is out of excuses and we see her driving through downtown LA looking about as happy as your average agoraphobic going for a joy ride.
Some music has started playing in the background and we see Topher getting dressed, and Sierra running into Victor who is now completely scar-free, and then Agent Pucker Face comes over and has a little talk with Echo. He finds out she can remember when they put other personalities in her, and she wants to get her real personality back along with the ones for all the other actives in the dollhouse. She asks Agent Pucker Face to help her and of course he says yes, and then we cut to he and Echo doing the “do you trust me? With my life” bit as her new handler. The End.
Wow, a good episode to get the new season started, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.
“My entire existence was conceived by a sociopath in a sweater vest.” That’s the best line of the night in my opinion, narrowly beating out; “Ah, Tempura Joe, such a poor lonely soul.”
“You better then that, because you’re better then me!” With that one simple line, Topher goes from being a cardboard bad guy to a complex person who might be good, but knows he’s doing terrible things. That whole scene between him and Whiskey was flat out awesome. You know, the last show I recapped was True Blood, and as much as I love True Blood, I’m never going to get a scene that good on that show. On Dollhouse, I get one like this almost once an episode.
Anyway, thanks for stopping by and see you next week.