JJ Abrams versus Joss Whedon

by admin on May 25, 2008 · 1 comment

Fox has two shiny new shows just waiting to be unwrapped. Both have set the Internet buzzing over the past couple of weeks and both have piqued my interest no end. If I was a fan of JJ Abrams and Joss whedon’s creative domes before, I’m an even bigger fan now that I’ve found out more of what they have in store for us in Fringe and Dollhouse.

Many fans are already comparing the relative merits of the two shows, pitting them up against one another as if they were rivals. Of course they’re two completely different shows, even if they could be sharing an online ARG in the weeks a months to come.

Fringe mastermind JJ Abrams Dollhouse mastermind Joss Whedon

A more worthwhile comparison, I think, is between the two masterminds themselves – in the blue corner we have that ‘bad robot’ JJ Abrams, and in the red corner we have the ‘mutant enemy’ Joss Whedon. But who comes out on top? Let’s see shall we:



  • Abrams – 41
  • Whedon – 43

Not much between then in terms of age. Whedon might win in terms of experience, but Abrams can claim to have more energy and zest (but let’s not split hairs). DRAW

Best Work to date:

Abrams: Everyone will have their own view on the best work from JJ Abrams plethora of great productions. From Alias to Cloverfield, the man is a creative genius. He also knows the value of viral marketing which shows how ‘savvy’ and in touch he is with today’s online trends. Actually he sets the trends, which means he’s ahead of the game. His best work, however, has to surely be that monster of a journey that is ‘LOST’. Score: 9/10

Whedon: No stranger to great shows/movies, Whedon has gems like Buffy, Angel, Firefly and Serenity to his name. His shows are perhaps more ‘cult’ than JJ’s (perhaps because JJ is more mainstream than Whedon?) but have you seen the following that he has? Of course, you’re probably one of them. His best work speaks to people in a way that other shows don’t or can’t. Score 9/10


Abrams: JJ has a MONSTER following – Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof may be the new sons of Lost, but everyone remembers the creator. His fans are loyal and passionate – he also bridges the gap between geek and cool. Score: 9.5/10

Whedon: As mentioned, Whedon has a MASSIVE following. Is it larger than Abrams? who knows, but seriously sometimes I get the feeling that Whedon’s fans love him more than they love his work. with JJ it’s probably the other way around – that’s the main difference that I can see. But if push came to show I’d say that JJ was more ‘known’ – especially by the casual fan. Score: 9/10


Abrams: Alias, Lost, Cloverfield, Fringe, Star Trek..seriously, great (and potentially great) productions and all with a different scifi-feel about them. Abrams doesn’t stand still for long and it shows in that his work is always varied. Score 9.5/10

Whedon: The man is in touch with what sparks peoples interest. His creativty is up there with the best of them. The only possible negative is that many people see ‘Buffy’ as being ‘Angel’ and ‘Angel’ as being ‘Buffy’. Does he have what it takes to break the mould? Score: 9/10

Promise of the Premise:

Abrams: Fringe looks set to ask some very pertient questions regarding science and technology in todays world. As with most Abrams shows it will explore hidden mythology and meld seemingly disparate characters into a world in which they will need one other to survive. The premise of this show is mind-blowing, it’s sensational and it’s stylish. The one down side is that many people will see it as another X-Files, and indeed it will borrow certain things from that world. So it’s not quite as ‘new’ a premise as it could be. Score: 8/10

Whedon: Again, a mind-blowing premise which again involves technology and the regulation (or lack of) of it’s application. Dollhouse will ask questions about identity, morality, science and other edgy aspects of society. The premise is perhaps slightly ‘fresher’ than that of ‘Fringe’ in that it doesn’t have an X-Files type show which preceded it in recent years. Score: 9/10

Total score: Abrams: 36 Whedon: 36

So it seems that the pair cannot be seperated overall – of course this is only my opinion and it’s in the name of fun – you may have your own views, which you’re entitled to. If I absolutely HAD to choose who in my heart of hearts was my favourite, it would be JJ Abrams. Yes, I know this is a Dollhouse fansite, but that’s the truth – JJ created my favourite show ever – A show which revived the genre and showed networks that scifi and mainstream can go together. Which is interesting, as I reckon that Dollhouse could be Whedon’s most ‘mainstream’ effort yet – and I think it’s got success written all over it. Even if there is a fear that some quarters of the Dollhouse community are jumping the gun a bit. But more on that later..





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