Review of Dollhouse

60 minutes

A sci-fi drama about a woman named Echo and other 'Actives' who are controlled by a shadowy group. Each week, they're programmed with specific personalities in order to service the needs of the wealthy, ranging from hostage negotiation to providing comfort to securing the Dollhouse itself. When finished with the jobs, their minds are wiped clean. Yet, for some, memories linger, and for Echo they become a driving force that she shields from her handlers.
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by Lucy
Sep 12, 2017 6:19PM EDT

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An intriguing sci-fi show, with interesting story arcs and great acting that really sells the main premise of humans being 'imprinted' with different purposes (mainly for others entertainment). However, this is really Eliza Dushku's show - she is amazing at playing Echo and her many imprints providing a wealth of emotion, distinctiveness and stunts in her different roles.

The main concept of imprinting different personalities into different bodies and wiping minds etc is a really unique concept and the secretiveness of the Dollhouse makes it a far more mysterious place, keeping you watching and guessing what might happen next. I certainly didn't see a few events coming!

Lots of good characters in the show, most of which have satisfying arcs across the two seasons. Topher the genius programmer, Victor and Sierra are probably the most developed, and therefore the most interesting other characters aside from Echo. It was good to see all of them overcome challenges, support each other and have vital roles to play in the final episodes.

Season 1 is much better in terms of pacing and overall structure, whereas season 2 is a bit of a rushed mess, with not much pay off in the big reveals and plot twists. You can tell the show and main corporate/central mystery are being forced to move much quicker as the story wraps long before it should have, which is a shame as I think 3 seasons would have been a better fit! Either way, I'm glad there is a solid ending for the show, and a hope for an alternate future (always a plus for a sci-fi show!)


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