Over the past two days, I’ve watched eight episodes of Dollhouse — a sci fi drama (ish) show produced by Joss Whedon. That’s honestly the only reason I watched it in the first place. It was on Netflix and I was like, oh, didn’t the guy who made my favorite TV series (Firefly) and musical (Dr. Horrible) make this too?
Yeah, so it’s pretty great. It’s about a business organization, Dollhouse, who make “programmable people.” These people are nicknamed “dolls,” but are called “actives” by the people actually in the organization. They’re kind of really classy mercenaries. Each active has (supposedly) volunteered for a five-year contract, in which their own memories are wiped from their minds and stored elsewhere. Then, according to whatever job they’re needed for — ranging from a romantic evening to dealing with kidnappers to “professional” larceny — they’re given a whole new personality and traits. They do tons of these jobs, but never remember any of it. Then once their contract has ended they’re immensely wealthy and can go live however they’d like.
Predictably, most of the jobs the actives are hired for deal with romance. I don’t know, I thought that was kind of interesting. The only people that can hire “dolls” are very rich, and usually very well connected and influential. And what do they shell out (presumably) thousands of dollars for? Their dream girl/guy. The one thing they lack, I suppose. But I’m not talking about the weird fetish guys. I mean, you can find much less expensive prostitutes if all you want is sex. They want an actual romance, they want to finally meet the person who’s perfect for them. I don’t doubt they know how unreal it all is, but if you’ve got the money, why not? Who doesn’t want to meet their “soul mate?”
A more obvious aspect of Dollhouse is the morality of it. People are supposed to volunteer to become “dolls,” but I sincerely doubt that every single one of them did. Most are in really tragic stages of life, like the woman whose daughter died, the woman whose husband was shot (while they were snooping around a science facility), the man who accidentally killed his best friend. As the woman in charge of Dollhouse says, “They couldn’t live with the consequences of their actions.” But we’re shown that one of the main characters was forced into becoming a doll by a man who abused her.
Even if everyone volunteered, is it right? These people are fulfilling the “fantasies” of others, and they don’t even know that they’re doing it. The main character, for example, is mentioned to have slept with fat nerdy guys, and pulls off a major crime. She won’t remember any of it when her contract is done, but it still happened. She does things she would never agree to doing if she were given the choice. But yet — she signed the contract. She knew she’d be doing unsavory things, but still went through with it.
Echo, the main character, regains a bit of self-awareness in an episode. She doesn’t remember anything of her life, but she’s “herself” for a day. During this time she tries to free all the people in the Dollhouse. She holds the scientist in charge of the memory wiping, Topher, at gunpoint and asks where she is, why she’s there, what’s she’s done, etc. He tells her that she volunteered (true), and that she’s “being having [sex]— A GREAT TIME” during the period she’s been an active. However, she’s still disgusted by the whole idea of it. The actives are not given a choice in anything, and are treated almost like animals. Granted, they stay in a huge mansion of sorts and have plenty of luxuries (spa, pools, massages, yoga classes, etc), but in their “blank” state — where they have no memories in their minds — they’re treated like cattle. Most of the staff at the Dollhouse can’t see them as people. The actives just walk around, mindless, until they’re needed for a job.
These people are real, but without any memories, they’re just husks. Is it okay that they’re given no free will? They signed a contract, after all, and once it’s over they’re be million/billionaires.
Is the Dollhouse anything more than a fancy human trafficking system?
If the actives can be turned into any sort of person, which one is them? Is there something that makes a person who they are, or is your personality just the result of memories? Say a kind-hearted woman is given the neural implants of someone cruel. Would she revert back to being the nice, caring person she was?
I need to change my blog’s title. Badly. But I just can’t think of anything good. I also need to stop playing Bad Company 2, and play Halo ODST because I’m borrowing it. I need to watch the Big Bang Theory. But I can’t find it. And I need to finish the motherfuckingwheeloftimeseries.
Jesus Christ, I thought everyone realized a long time ago that there are girl gamers. Yet almost every time I get on Left for Dead, someone asks if I’m actually a girl, how old am I, do I have a boyfriend, and even worse — they tell me all about their sad love lives and how no girl wants to go out with them. What the heck, man. I’m here to kick ass and take names kill zombies, not give you a virtual lapdance.
I guess I could just say that I’m a lesbian.
But that might make it worse, least of all promote a stereotype I’m not fond of.
This rant is kind of pointless since there’s always going to be some form of sexual harassment (seems too strong a description in my case, but whatever) for chicks everywhere, anyway. The thing is, though, I’m not getting suggestive comments, or chauvinists on my team. I’m getting pathetic adolescents who can’t get girls, and dump their sob stories in my lap as I’m cutting my way through a zombie horde. It’s really hard to conjure up false sympathy when you’re in that kind of gory situation, as you can imagine.
But I can’t just cuss these guys out like I would if they were saying lewd things about me. They’re reaching out on a (fake) emotional level, begging for whatever comfort they can get over a microphone. This morning, one guy asked me out. Seriously. Apparently after two Left for Dead campaigns, I’m irresistable. Granted, the whole time he was complaining about how much he hates being single and how he needs a girlfriend…
I wish all I had to deal with was sexist comments or something, because this is so stupid and pathetic.
I also love having the house to myself — which is what happens five days out of seven. Except for the whole having-a-seven-year-old-sister-who-keeeps-you-from-going-anywhere thing. Yeah, that sucks.
Yesterday I finished Elantris by Brandon Sanderson. Holy shit, it was great. The last hundred pages or so had me going “WHATTHEFUCK, NOOOO” to “OHGOODIT’SOKAY” to “WHATTHEFUUUUUUUCK.” There was like an armory of Chekhov’s Guns that were all tied up in the end with a neat string, and it’s insane how well he pulled it all off. There’s some Aon jewelry available online, and I reallyreally want to get one of those pretty necklaces. Even thought they’re $50.
(Chekhov’s gun is the literary technique whereby an element is introduced early in the story, but its significance does not become clear until later on. For example, a character may find a mysterious object that eventually becomes crucial to the plot, but at the time the object is found it does not seem to be important.)
Saw Inception the other day, and it was good. Duh. Really friggin’ long, though. Another perfect ending to a story. And todaaay, I get to put together fan blades. Wooo. But tomorrow there’s going to be another Guild episode, so that’s good.
It’s August friggin’ second. I guess I’m a little excited for school, but that’s normal. Once summer starts to wind down I always start thinking about how fun school will be, but after about a month, I’m tired of it. Looking forward to school supply shopping. Hopefully I can convince my mom not to buy the cheapest 50 cent shit she can possibly get and actually get some nice notebooks and whatever. Fat chance, right? BUT NAGISA WILL BE HERE SOOOON! (my Japanese exchange student, for anyone who’s actually reading this and doesn’t know what I’m talking about) I AM SO EXCITED TO MEET HER. IN PERSON. The only problem is that she’s arriving after registration, so we’ll have to rush to get her schedule and all that.
Oh well. I’m done. Time to put fan blades together.