Written by Tracy Bellomo
Directed by Felix Alcalá
Because of the glitches Echo, Sierra, Victor, and November had in the previous episode (and earlier episodes in Echo’s case), Adelle feels precautions need to be taken. Topher agrees, and he thinks he might be able to fix the problem by tinkering with the chemicals they breathe while they’re sleeping. All four of them, plus Mike, wake up in their pods, with their original personalities intact, sans memories. They work together to try to get out of the Dollhouse. Sierra wants to confront the man who put her there, Victor wants to help her, November wants to find her daughter, and Echo wants to get somewhere safe. They make it outside, but Echo stays behind because she now wants to get everyone else out too. Victor and Sierra find Nolan, the horrible jerk who put Sierra in the Dollhouse, and Victor gives him a bloody nose. Echo holds Topher and Adelle at gunpoint until they let everyone go. November finds her daughter’s grave and cries over it. As soon as they accomplish whatever has been nagging at them, they fall asleep. Because it turns out this entire exercise was planned from the start. Dr. Saunders thought it would be good for them to gain some catharsis for their problems. However, Echo did succeed in getting a message to Paul, which reaffirms his certainty that working this case is the right thing to do.
This might be one of those episodes that just kind of deflates if you’ve already seen it. The twist that all of this was orchestrated by Adelle and Topher in the first place is a huge one, and if you already know the twist, it takes all the suspense out of the characters’ situation. Which is a shame. Also, in the end, everyone’s right back where they started at the beginning of the episode (possibly even further back than that), so it feels like about as little was accomplished as in the more formulaic early episodes. It’s still more interesting than those ones, though, so that’s something.
Things I Liked
Things I Didn’t
Considering how the Victor/Sierra stuff started, it’s kind of surprising (but wonderful) that it’s gone the direction it has. He’s a huge sweetie and wants to make sure she’s okay. Sierra and November both needed catharsis because of bad things they’d been through, but Victor just needed the power to help Sierra, because he couldn’t do anything to stop Hearne when he was just an empty doll.
Dr. Saunders clearly has some issues of her own. She seems depressed and very cynical about the world outside the Dollhouse. Why is she afraid to leave? Why is she so serious and miserable most of the time?
Whoa, I think somehow November—whoever she really is—caused her daughter’s death. She looked like she was saying “I’m sorry” when she was sobbing over Katie’s grave. Besides that, though, I really don’t have a sense of who she is and how she’s different from Mellie.
The Watcher's Diary
In this blog, I'll be reviewing, analyzing, and generally fangirling over excellent television. Exhibit A: the Whedonverse.