Dollhouse, Small Mercies, Virtuality

by admin on June 26, 2009 · 5 comments

Hello Dollhouse, we'd happily take the Friday slot off yer hands..

Hello Dollhouse, we'd happily take the Friday slot off yer hands..

Ronald D. Moore’s Virtuality airs on FOX tonight. It has been described as ‘ambitious, complicated and thought-provoking’. Sound familiar?

UnlikeĀ  Dollhouse, the relevance..the human consequence, is engrained into the DNA of the first episode.

Unlike Dollhouse, the series has been cut short and will be a mere memory after the 2-hour Pilot.

My point? I guess I’m still waiting for Dollhouse to reveal its relevancy. Regular readers will know that I gave up on the show after episode 6, I’m now 8 episodes deep after being intrigued by the shock renewal. I’ve always loved the themes in Dollhouse, but surely at some point the ‘powers that be’ will have to, A. make us care for the central character, or B. introduce some global relevance which we can all identify with?

Maybe my wish will come true in the next episode on my list – 1.09?

Maybe we should be grateful for still being on the air? Spare a thought for those poor heart-broken Virtuality fans.

Adam June 27, 2009 at 12:26 am

The next episode (1.09) is good, no doubt. Why was this newer show not given a chance?

Roco June 27, 2009 at 8:17 am

I think FOX felt that Virtuality wouldn’t do well in the ratings, especially as a serial.

That said, they ‘might’ give it a chance if enough people are interested/tuned in last night. I haven’t seen it myself yet so I can’t judge, but it will be interesting to see the feedback it receives.

greennogo June 29, 2009 at 1:22 pm

I thought it was a terrific pilot, if middling TV movie, and that 0.5 in the 18-49 demo in the face of a friggin Farrah hagiography is a tragedy. (Farrah, people? What, was ‘Ow, my balls!’ on hiatus?)

It’s a shame that quality “hard” sci-fi is such a tough brand for a network to sell these days, but the whole 40 year old virgin geek in grandma’s basement stereotype is so pervasive that those who really should know better-who get paid to know better/see: Gina Bellafonte’s New York Times review-often work to marginalize potential viewers even further than they already are. There’s also the fact that the primary demo for a show like ‘Virtuality’ stays away from the TV in droves on Friday night.

It’s easy to blame FOX given their track record, but at least Kevin Reilly had the grace to screen the pilot on something other than July 4th weekend. I’d just wish they’d realize that with netflix, the internet, live streaming on your x-box, opening weekend-take-all theatrical releases, and the all important ‘gettin’ plastered at your fine local drinking establishment’, that the target demo for growing a genre show (e.g. ‘The X-Files’) on Friday night just doesn’t exist anymore, and likely never will again.

I guess I don’t understand why things that ‘take risks’ aren’t aired in time slots where the appropriate demos will be around to take advantage of them–like Thursday’s at 9. And if FOX wants to create an audience for scripted programming on Friday’s, why not commission the next ‘Matlock’, or just dump ‘Hell’s Kitchen’ into a Friday slot with a demographic carry-over. Otherwise you risk flushing an expensive, difficult to market, but ultimately very high quality piece of work like Virtuality down the toilet at a place and time that dooms it to oblivion.

Matt June 29, 2009 at 6:48 pm

Yeah, to be honest it would be smarter to try to make a show like Virtuality a hit because it was probably expensive to make in the first place. Putting it on Friday without much support is basically throwing away the investment that they made in the show, which I wouldn’t think it good business.

In regards to Dollhouse, is 1.09 Spy In The House Of Love? If so, then it’s in the top 2 episodes of the series. If it’s the strange murder mystery one, then it’s another (though better, thankfully) trip down Persona-of-the-week lane. Hopefully Dollhouse can pull things together for itself in the next season, and to be honest I could see it happening. They’ve laid the groundwork down and set up the themes, and they have the entire next season to themselves (by which I mean: without the 5 fox-ordered pilot things). Hopefully they can continue with the mythology they started in some of season 1’s episodes.

Roco July 5, 2009 at 6:14 pm

Yeah, to be honest I’m surprised they even aired it AND gave it a fair amount of promotion, considering they were never going to make it into a series.

As for DH – yep, I REALLY hope they don’t go back to the stand-alone method. They can’t afford to tred water next season.

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