March 2 2009

Dollhouse Ratings Drop, But Thank Goodness For DVRs

dollhouse huntDollhouse ratings are dropping, but thank goodness for DVRs.

While I tried to warn you all in advance that this show would need ratings help, and I know that actually got some unexpected viewers, it still isn’t doing well.  From the first week, which wasn’t the best ratings, the show lost 15% of its viewers in week 2.  This is not unusual for new shows, but it still doesn’t help.  In the third week the ratings slipped by a tenth, making the shows survival even more questionable.

Well, there is some good news in that once time shifted DVR viewing was added in, the premiere episode jumped from a 2.0 share to a 2.6 share, a jump of 30%.  Will this be enough to keep the show going?  Who knows.  While I haven’t heard any rumors of cancellation yet, I’m still concerned as Fox doesn’t have the best track record of keeping shows on the air.

One complaint I have heard from viewers is that the show is slow, and some of us are watching it out of devotion to a better, more engaging show we enjoyed in the past.  Well, I would put this challenge to those that say it… go back and watch the first two seasons of Buffy, the Vampire Slayer as if you were seeing them for the first time.  I think you will find the show isn’t as engaging at the beginning as you remember it.

While talking with “M” tonight (for new readers, my best friend/evil overlord who is only ever referred to by the letter M), she agreed with me and pointed out that Joss Whedon essentially writes novels that just happen to be presented to us on our television screens.  I have to say I agree with her.  Mr. Whedon is all about building to a pay off, he doesn’t want to just present it all on a platter to you in one serving. Yes, when you look at all seven seasons of Buffy, it does present a very engaging series, but it also shows that each episode, as well as each season, built upon what came before it.  Seeing as he has a five year plan for Dollhouse, don’t you think it might be better to wait for a few more chapters of his latest “novel” before you write it off?

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  • Whedon Fan

    Firefly had me from the first episode. Dollhouse seems to a be a frankenstein of all his old shows and I don't find it compelling enough to watch.

    • I'm certainly not saying it is perfect, but I'm willing to at least give it a little bit longer before I call it a day. If it hasn't grabbed you, though, then it hasn't grabbed you.

  • Eve

    I'm rewatching Buffy from season 1 and the first episode DOES grab you with its witty dialogue, interesting characters and original concepts. Both of Firefly's first episodes (the actual pilot and the "first" episode Fox aired) were brilliant. Dollhouse is passable, at best. How can I care bout a main character whose personality changes every week only to be erased? I'm watching the show because Joss made it and I'm trying to give it a chance, but I bet it gets axed soon.

    • Henry

      I think the important part of this show isn't necessarily that her personality changes every week only to be erased, but what's left after all this is done. What the show presents for me is the very BASIC aspects of the human condition, and the things that technology could never wipe away.

      I started watching this show because I'm an Eliza Dushku fan, and I keep going back for two reasons:
      -The episodes are getting better and better by leaps and bounds.
      -The show on the whole is presenting things that I could have never imagined on my own.

  • Wiccan

    I am a huge Joss W fan, but this series just feel flat. I have no feeling of connection with Echo. Her story is constantly changing and there is nothing to latch onto… The series almost feels like a rapid succession of boring commercials. No depth or a developing story story arc, and no real threads of continuity that can get me emotionally ties to the series.

    This is all very sad.