angel vs. spike

Today is Joss Whedon day, it would seem.  Roomie and I were discussing last night’s episode of Dollhouse, and we got on the topic of Joss’s habit of killing off major characters and how long it will be until someone on Dollhouse bites it.  This led to talk of the first important character to die on Buffy: Jenny Calendar, in season two.

I watched some Buffy last summer, but I only got through the first season and the first few episodes of season two – not quite to the whole Angelus storyline.  So I went back and watched “Passion,” the episode where Jenny dies, on Hulu, and now I’m following it up with the two-part season finale.

Buffy is definitely entertaining, in its cheesy way.  All the little pieces of Giles’s heart, when Jenny dies!  The relationship between Giles and Buffy is obviously the direct precursor of Boyd and Echo from Dollhouse.

Long before I ever sat down and watched my first episode of Buffy, I knew about it from hearing my friends talk about it.  Roomie and another friend are both big Buffy fans, and their conversations about it often centered on the debate over who’s better – Angel or Spike?  They’re both Spike fans, and on reflection I think I am as well.  I love me some David Boreanaz in Bones, but he was just so incredible awkward in his Buffy days.  Spike, on the other hand, is freaking awesome.

What’s the verdict, Buffy fans?  Angel or Spike?

dollhouse deserves a chance

Did anyone catch “Stage Fright,” the third episode of Dollhouse, last night?  If you’re in the U.S. you can see it on Hulu.

Full disclosure: I’m not a true Whedonite, because my attitude toward Buffy and Angel can best be described as “meh.”  But I loved Firefly, so I decided to give Dollhouse a chance, and after the pilot I was intrigued enough to keep going.

After three episodes, I think we’re starting to get a lot better idea of what this show is going to be.  The quirky Joss dialogue that some people missed in the pilot is creeping in, and the characters are becoming interesting (especially Boyd, who I absolutely love – his commitment to Echo makes him instantly sympathetic).  Plus in the last two episodes there have been some really great “gasp!” moments; last night’s episode, for example, was not clicking for me until the moment when Echo knocked out Rayna and said “Friends help each other out,” and I suddenly realized that this was actually about Echo protecting Sierra, not Rayna.

My one concern, to be honest, is Eliza Dushku.  The rest of the characters are perfectly cast, but her acting leaves something to be desired.  I can only hope she’ll grow into it as the show goes on.

All in all, I hope the suits at Fox give Dollhouse some time to find an audience and get on its feet – because especially with the news of who’s going to be playing Alpha (DO NOT CLICK if you don’t want to be spoiled), I’m looking forward to seeing what happens next.

doctor who: seeds of doom

I’m a big fan of Doctor Who, but most of my experience has been with the new series – that is, Christopher Eccleston and David Tennant.  Recently a friend of mine decided to introduce me to Tom Baker, and I just got back from finishing the 1976 serial Seeds of Doom with her.  The official summary of this story on the BBC website is “a crazed botanist brings a deadly alien plant to life.”  A crazed botanist!

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top ten bones episodes

For some idiotic reason Fox has decided skip not one, but TWO weeks of Bones – two consecutive weeks of no new episode.  (Something about American Idol and President Obama messing up the TV schedule.  Whatever.)  I’m going through serious withdrawal from my favorite “romantic comedy set in the world of forensic anthropology,” so to make myself feel better I decided to compile a list of my ten favorite episodes thus far, in chronological order.

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I just joined StumbleUpon, and at first I was a little dubious about the whole concept, but if it leads me to sites like this it must be a good thing.

Yes, I’m pretty sure “People Who Write Erotic Versions of Star Trek Where All the Characters Are Furries, Like Kirk is an Ocelot or Something, and They Put a Furry Version of Themselves as the Star of the Story” are about as geeky as it gets.

this is a bit creepy

First saw this ad on Hulu.  The One Laptop per Child foundation is amazing, don’t get me wrong, but… John Lennon is dead.  And using his voice and image like this is kind of creepy.

five reasons you should be watching life on nbc

Last night I settled in with a bag of Cheetos and watched one of my favorite current TV series, Life, which airs on NBC.  I’ve always been a sucker for crime procedurals and I think this is about the best one on the air at the moment.  However, much to my despair, almost no one seems to be watching it.

The show centers of LA homicide detective Charlie Crews and his partner Dani Reese.  The twist is that, at the beginning of the series, Charlie is returning to the job after spending more than a decade in prison for three murders he didn’t commit.  (Getting his badge back was part of the terms of his wrongful imprisonment settlement.)  On the surface, Charlie is calm, cheerful, and quirky, annoying his partner by quoting Zen philosophy.  But he’s also obsessed with unravelling the conspiracy that framed him.

I was hooked on this show within the first minute of the pilot (literally).  But in case I haven’t convinced you yet, here are five reasons you should check it out.

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Samuel L. Jackson has officially signed on to play Nick Fury in Iron Man 2.  Woo-hoo!!!  When I saw Iron Man I barely even knew who Nick Fury was, but roomie and I sat through the credits because we’d heard there was a scene after, and then we practically started screaming when we realized that was SAMUEL L. JACKSON there talking to Tony.

After all the endlessly swirling casting rumors about the sequel (Mickey Rourke? Scarlett Johansson?), and the re-casting of Rhodey, it’s nice know that something is finally going right with this movie.

chicks making out ≠ diversity

Maybe it’s just my imagination, but it’s seems like there’s a growing number of bisexual women being portrayed on TV recently.  Some examples:

  • When Angela broke up with Hodgins on Bones last fall, her rebound was an old flame named Roxie – which was a bit of a surprise to some fans since she’d never been portrayed dating a woman or mentioned being bi on three previous seasons of the show.
  • “Thirteen” on House has slept around with quite a few women, though she’s dating a man (Foreman) at the moment.
  • Callie on Grey’s Anatomy – yes, I KNOW that strictly speaking she’s a lesbian, not bi, but this is something new she discovered this season after previously being involved with men.

My first thought when I noticed all this way, hooray!  I am all for diversity on my TV shows – I want to see men and women, gay and straight, black, white, Asian, I want to see a reflection of the actual world.  But I gradually began to realize there’s something else entirely going on here.

When these sort of characters are added to TV shows, network executives can pat themselves on the backs for their positive portrayals of homosexuality.  But the thing is, all of these characters are women who also sleep with (or have slept with) men.  They far outnumber gay men, or women who never sleep with men.  They also all tend to be hot and promiscuous.  And in the end, what’s really happening is increased objectification of women.

Hot chicks making out with each other is not diversity.  Hot chicks making out with each other is an adolescent male fantasy.  And when the women in question have also been involved with men, the fantasy is even better, because a guy can daydream about getting some of that himself.

Has anyone else noticed this??  I’d love to hear other examples.