Trivia / Dollhouse

  • Actor Allusion:
    • A Stealth Pun from Bennett to Echo in "The Left Hand" (2x06): "It's not a question of faith."
    • An earlier example is found in "Stage Fright" (1x03) when Echo assumes the persona of Jordan, perhaps the most Faith-like of her Dollhouse characters (right down to a common South Boston upbringing). After the pop star Rayna Russell fires Jordan from her squad of backup singers, her retort is remarkably similar to a line by Faith as she argues with Buffy in "Faith, Hope, and Trick":
      Echo/Jordan: "You can fire me, but bitch, don't think you can take me!"
      Faith (threateningly to Buffy): "Wow. Think you can take me?"
    • Eliza Dushku plays a secret agent after having played the daughter of one.
    • Bennett also says she'd like to get a look at Caroline's amygdala, to which Caroline replies, "You'll have to buy me dinner first." In "Getting Closer" (2x11), Caroline notes in a flashback that Bennett (played by Summer "River Tam" Glau), is "Smarts off the chart. Bet she could kill you with her brain."
    • In the same episode, Claire Saunders (Amy Acker) breaks down in the arms of Boyd, sobbing: "I wish we had more time!" Fred Burkle said exactly the same to Wesley the day her soul was consumed by Illyria. Of course, Amy Acker played Fred.
    • In (1x05), Patton Oswalt plays an internet billionaire who made it big with "Bouncy the Rat"
    • This isn't the first time Tahmoh Penniket has fallen in love with a sleeper agent. In fact, his work as Helo is what made Joss Whedon cast him here.
  • Actor-Shared Background: On occasion, Echo's imprints reference Eliza Dushku's real life.
    • Jordan the backup singer/bodyguard is from Boston.
    • The outdoorsy persona from "The Target" had three brothers, and learns to bow hunt.
  • Contractual Purity: It's mentioned that Rayna was singing for "The Mouse". Her stage outfit however suggests she's broken free of this "curse", and into another.
  • Descended Creator: Tancharoen, who played the Doll "Kilo", is one of the show's screenwriters.
  • Fake American: Australian Actress Dichen Lachman uses a fluent American accent for Sierra and her imprinted personalities, and her natural accent for Sierra's original personality Priya.
  • Friday Night Death Slot: At least Fox had the sense of cutting the commercial breaks in half, letting Whedon have six more minutes per episode. For season 1, anyway. Season 2 seems to have normal-length commercials. To be fair, the network probably had to just to justify not canceling the show. The "remoteless TV" thing was always an experiment. It didn't work, making them less money since very few advertisers were willing to pay the premium price. Note that the other show debuting this approach, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, got axed. Fringe also had a "remoteless" debut season, and has done okay, although it's had a struggle in the ultra-competitive Thursday night slot.
  • Jossed: Ten thousand theories about who the real villain in the series is. Not one of them included Boyd.
  • Making Use of the Twin: Enver Gjokaj's twin brother Demir appears in "The Attic" where Victor has to fight an image of himself.
  • Missing Episode: The DVD-only "Epitaph One" (1x13). A few scenes from this episode form the Previously On introduction to the series finale, which is nice for those of us who didn't get the DVDs. Thankfully not the case for UK viewers — the Sci-Fi Channel aired Epitaph One at the end of the first season.
  • Playing Against Type:
    • Felicia Day, usually Adorkable nerdy girls, plays a bitter Action Survivor in the Season 1 finale. Many fans didn't recognise her.
    • Alan Tudyk likewise was best known as the lovably goofy Wash on Firefly. Turns out he's the homicidal Big Bad Alpha.
  • Playing with Character Type: Summer Glau usually plays Woobie-ish Action Girls who engage in a lot of Waif-Fu. Here she's a Woobie-ish genius who has no combat skills at all.
  • Real-Life Relative: Eliza Dushku's boyfriend Rick Fox makes a rather disjointed appearance as an Active in "Getting Closer", the last of the Los Angeles dolls to be freed. Her older brother Nate Dushku is the Big Bad in "Epitaph Two: Return" - as the latest body housing Clive Ambrose. She's the producer of the series, y'know.
  • Star-Derailing Role: A show conceived partly to show off Eliza Dushku's versatility ended up demonstrating the opposite as far as many critics were concerned. Since the show ended, she's mostly been doing animation and video-game voice work in roles tailored for her "morally-ambiguous, sexy Action Girl" type-casting and core fanboy fanbase. She did get a bit of positive attention for her role in the 2016 indie dramedy Jane Wants A Boyfriend so time will tell.
  • Type Casting: Amy Acker plays a scientist once again in a Joss Whedon production.
  • Viral Marketing: The Alternate Reality Game Dollplay.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Joss Whedon planned to have five seasons of the show, and had each character's development worked out in advance. Ultimately only two seasons were produced.
    • Dr Saunders was written to be much older, but Joss Whedon rewrote the character so that Amy Acker could star.
    • The sexual elements of the Dollhouse were more up front originally. The network disliked this, fearing it too similar to prostitution, and pushed Joss Whedon to make it more of a thriller.

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