Is Dollhouse Already Doomed?

Published 6 years ago by , Updated November 8th, 2008 at 4:12 pm,

eliza dushku dollhouse Is Dollhouse Already Doomed?Is Fox “Foxing Up” again?

The Joss Whedon fans who were thinking of starting a “Save Dollhouse” website/campaign might have been on to something long before the rest of us.

Despite the previous report that Dollhouse will be airing on Mondays in 2009, Fox has distributed a press release last week announcing that the series will now premiere in February, on Friday the 13th.

WHAT are they thinking? Is this a demonstration of some massive amount of faith in the realm of Whedon fans to overcome the statistical fact that Friday nights are the worst time ever to air a show?

As it stands now, Mondays in 2009 have 24 & House lined up. For Fridays, they’re going to prepare us for a resounding lineup starting January 16th with Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader? at 8 PM and Don’t Forget the Lyrics at 9 PM. Wow! That’s gonna rile me up for sure… If anything, this lineup will make whatever else shows up after it seem incredibly compelling! Hold me back.

As it turns out, the lineup will be replaced starting on February 13th by Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles at 8 pm, and the Dollhouse series premiere at 9 PM.

You may have never heard this out of me before, but I’m pissed off. There, I did it. I cussed. I couldn’t contain it. Despite all the noise that was made about how Fox Television is a new and differently operated network – and that they would be in full support of Joss Whedon and his Dollhouse, I can’t help but notice this SLIGHT conflict of planning.

Fridays are the time slot where shows get shoved when they’re faltering or as some like to think, have no real network support. Do Dark Angel, The Lone Gunmen, John Doe or Firefly sound familiar? OK, maybe Firefly more than the others. But these shows were all victims of the Friday night time slot.

Oh, lest anyone forget, Battlestar Galactica will have its highly anticipated return of the 2nd half of the 4th and final season from January 16th to March 20th. BSG will be airing in its usual slot of Fridays at 10 PM. It shouldn’t be a distraction, but I’m in the middle of a rant and can’t help myself.

OK, let me play Devil’s advocate to my own arguments here for just one teeny-tiny second…

Is Fox trying to revamp Friday night into a blockbuster Sci-Fi night? Are they trying to compete with the Sci-Fi Channel? Maybe they can… I… I… gads.

OK, that’s all I can muster. Despite wavering ratings for some reason advertisers love Terminator and have helped it stay alive, so moving it to Friday is akin to using a bucket to bail out the Titanic.

The ‘net, as a whole is echoing this very sentiment: that Fox has doomed Joss’ show. Therefore, I am taking it upon myself to help generate the popularity it’s going to need to succeed! Up and down the streets I shall go, carrying signs and playing town crier for Dollhouse.

In the meantime, check out this new trailer that’s been released by Fox:

Sources: Fox Press Release, AICN

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  1. The network has obviously viewed the show and deemed it as a program without mass appeal. I loved Tru Calling but it didn’t have a big audience (5 million viewers per episode) and it got canned. Terminator: The Sarah Conner chronicles is terrific. Much better than I thought it could be and its audience is down to 5 million viewers a week. It will move to friday’s also and be Dollhouse’s lead in. Less and less shows are attracting more than 10 million viewers a week. There are so many choices that networks might have to accept 7 million viewers as a good number. If not they will be spinning there wheels blowing off show after show until they find a big mass audience hit. That is a feat that is getting harder and harder!


  2. If FOX thinks I am going to miss my SciFi Channel Fridays to watch Dollhouse or TSCC, they’re SADLY mistaken!!

  3. That’s a great observation Chuck. Thanks for the input.

    Is it me, or are shows with any kind of detailed story line losing viewers these days?

  4. Called it!


  5. Fox should just give to NBC.
    If the ratings dont work,
    They could then move it to SciFi.

  6. I think its pretty official now, Dollhouse is doomed.

    Although FOX has been good to him before, I think Whedon should jump ship after this recent decision. Whedon has an uncanny ability to write complex story-telling, and it doesn’t benefit anyone if no one is able to experience it.

    I’d love to see Whedon work in the realm of Heroes.

  7. Mr.Carl.Lee said, “I think Whedon should jump ship after this recent decision.”

    Yeah but doesn’t he have a contract with them for a set # of properties. If this falls, what does he have left two or three? I guess everything hangs on his contract.

  8. He should have his own network. WhedonWorks. They have a goose that pretty much does nothing but lay golden eggs and they keep trying to roast it for dinner. Typical.

  9. Karalee: Well said!

  10. isn’t Fox network the only network who has never been able to support three hours of primetime shows (constantly canceling every show will do that)(Profit, Space: Above and Beyond, Strange Luck, Millenium, Firefly, K-Ville) . so instead they air 9 oclock news, and act like they are doing us a favor.
    They are so confident that they have revenue from American Idol.

  11. animaleyes,
    to be fair, Fox cancelled Millenium after 3 seasons.
    while the rest on your list were canceled in their first season .

  12. animaleyes: K-Ville was a damned good show and it was incredibly short sighted of FOX to cut it short. It was developing into a top notch cop drama.

  13. Maybe, if Dollhouse is abruptly cancelled like Firely was, Whedon can somehow make another film. It certainly worked with Serenity.