Dollhouse: ‘Gray Hour’ (S01E04)


For a fourth straight week, Dollhouse is declining in viewership.  I feel that this show is a ticking time bomb just waiting for Fox to push the button and cancel the show.  Maybe the highly anticipated sixth episode will give Dollhouse the boost it desperately needs.

The episode “Gray Hour” had a few bright moments.  I hate to say it, but it’s becoming a bit tiresome watching this formulaic series slowly unravel.  There’s certainly a big backstory mystery that is being revealed with Alpha, but it’s not moving quick enough.  I don’t need a reason to watch Eliza Dushku weekly, but unfortunately my expectation for Dollhouse is declining.  Episode 6 better be worth it.

Anyway, let me quickly recap the episode.  Echo’s new imprinted personality is Taffy, a bold and daring safecracker who was hired by a third party along with three other specialists to steal a very rare sculpture.  Things seem to be under control until she is wiped clean remotely through her cell phone.  Topher freaks out and then suspects that Alpha is now alive.  Meanwhile, Sierra is imprinted with Taffy’s personality and tries to walk Echo through escaping the vault.  When that fails, all hell breaks loose but Langton saves the day once again.

Dollhouse runs into the danger of questioning why an Active would be hired instead of a real person.  It was addressed last week during “Stage Fright” that someone who wants to protect one’s life is better than someone who is paid to protect.  I was on board for that.  But in the opening scene during this week’s episode, Echo is a midwife delivering a baby.  Since we know the price is very steep to hire an Active, why wouldn’t a regular midwife be hired?

A moment I specifically liked followed the opening scene when Topher and Langton observe Echo, Sierra, and Victor eating together in a mindwiped state.  Topher sort of freaks out as he explains they routinely eat together and at the same table.  He explains that the wipes are legitimate, but some kind of killer instinct is grouping them together, making them more powerful.  This intrigues me as now I question all the past episodes when it seemed that Echo was remembering her history.

The other story that I didn’t touch on during the recap was of Agent Ballard’s.  His story progressed as he encounters Victor-as-Lubov again in his apartment.  Lubov is freaking out saying that the Russian mob is after him and he needs Ballard’s protection.  Of course Ballard doesn’t trust Lubov since he set him up to be killed last episode.  So what does Ballard do?  He puts out an APB on Lubov, which has every cop hunting for him.  I’m not exactly sure why Ballard did this… maybe to ensure that Lubov cannot run away?  Or that he might be able to figure out more answers if Lubov is dead (since Actives are valuable, maybe someone will intervene that leads to the Dollhouse)?  Whatever it is, Ballard just made Lubov’s identity impossible to work as an Active since personalities are altered, not physical features.

Finally, the Alpha storyline.  The main plot that will hopefully have a big pay-off.  It definitely has my attention, but it has to start moving along.  That’s what supposedly episode 6 has in store.  Is it possible to just skip next week’s episode and plow into episode 6?  No?  Fine, a show with Eliza Dushku is better than most shows without Eliza Dushku.


One Response to Dollhouse: ‘Gray Hour’ (S01E04)

  1. Aidan Brack says:

    Glad to see that I wasn’t the only person flummoxed by her being used as a midwife!

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