Recap: "Needs"


Last week's episode, "Needs" (aka Dollhouse: The Awakening), put the Dolls front and center in an amalgamation of Lost, The Great Escape and Buffy's "Tabula Rasa." Up until now we've seen Dolls break engagements, develop feelings for one another and, increasingly, glitch like mad. But what if they emerged from their sleep pods as the person they were before the Dollhouse? But, you know, without all those pesky memories.


Despite being short on Agent Ballard, the episode both began and ended with him. In a dream sequence, Paul worked out his feelings for both Caroline and Mellie. If only he knew that they both answered to Adelle DeWitt.


As the Dolls awoke for another day of swimming, banana pancakes and catering to the whims of millionaires, the Dollhouse staff had an all-hands meeting in Adelle's office. The topic of discussion? Avoiding the first step towards another Alpha. If only they had started episodes ago, they might actually be ahead of the game. As is, the staff knows the tide is rising. "This house is out of balance," Adelle puts it.


Two things we learned from this scene:


* Adelle clearly has no idea about the science she's selling.

* There is a sedative cocktail pumped into the sleep pods.


As Echo prepared for bed, her interaction with Ballard from "Man on the Street" echoes in her mind. Once in the pods and fast asleep, another voice pushes through. "Caroline... Caroline... Wake up!"


Now, about that voice. Whose was it? It didn't sound like Caroline herself and it certainly wasn't DeWitt.


But the phantom voice succeeds in its goal as Caroline is roused from sleep and immediately panics, realizing she's encased. After getting out of her pod, she starts to notice voices coming from four other pods in the room. One by one, the Dolls we know and love (including everyone's favorite, Mike) come out of their pods with no memory of who they are or how they got there.


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