Dollhouse 1.02 The Target (2009, TV) – 4/10 review

Eliza Dushku: Echo
Harry J. Lennix: Boyd Langton
Fran Kranz: Topher Brink
Tahmoh Penikett: Paul Ballard
Enver Gjokaj: Lukov
Dichen Lachman: Sierra
Olivia Williams: Adelle DeWitt
Writer (Series’ Creator): Joss Whedon
Amy Acker: Dr. Claire Saunders
Reed Diamond: Laurence Dominic
Matt Keeslar: Richard Connell
Miracle Laurie: Mellie
Rich McDonald: Park Ranger in Truck
Mark Sheppard: Tanaka
Tim Conlon: Shaw
Producer: Eliza Dushku
Consulting Producer: Steven S. DeKnight
Executive Producer: Joss Whedon
Writer: Steven S. DeKnight
Director: Steven S. DeKnight

Dollhouse 1.02 Target, The (2009)

Boyd Langton is brought in to be Echo’s handler and bodyguard after a previous doll goes on a murderous rampage. Fortunately, nobody misses any of the dead people so the Dollhouse can continue without effect. Echo is imprinted to be the perfect girlfriend for outdoor type Richard Connell.

4/10

Despite the well-misdirected emergence of the SPOILER The Most Dangerous Game / Hard Target plot, this is a woefully unconvincing episode. The problems starts with Eliza Dushku’s slightly inadequate acting; she cannot project the empty innocence of her shell and can’t quite make her imprinted personality completely believable (and she’s not a good enough actress for that to be intentional). The problem for just about all the rest of the principle cast is that their characters are such dull or unpleasant archetypes: the maverick FBI agent whom everyone makes fun of, a girl-next-door in love, a hard-bitten bodyguard trying to remain unattached, a quirky trendy boffin, a hard-as-nails career boss woman, an uppity second-in-command. Creator Joss Whedon clearly likes Alias but this imitation is not flattering, just embarrassing.

This Dollhouse episode contains mild swear words and gory and very unpleasant scenes, graphic gun violence, graphic arrow violence and nudity, sexuality.

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