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Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog
June 29, 2008 3:09 PM   Subscribe

Joss Whedon's latest project is a family affair. Seems that Mr. Whedon got a little bored during the writer's strike and called up some friends and family to help him make a low-budget web-series:
The story of a low-rent super-villain, the hero who keeps beating him up, and the cute girl from the laundromat he’s too shy to talk to. Featuring Neil Patrick Harris as Dr. Horrible, Nathan Fillion as Captain Hammer, Felicia Day as Penny and a cast of dozens. Written by Joss Whedon, Maurissa Tancharoen, Jed Whedon, and Zack Whedon. Directed by Joss Whedon. Produced by David Burns, Michael Boretz, and Joss Whedon. Music by Joss Whedon and Jed Whedon. Lyrics by Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon, and Maurissa Tancharoen. Score and Orchestration by Jed Whedon.
Make sure to watch the trailer, and read Joss' announcement. And if you're so inclined, there's an official MySpace page, and a fan page.
posted by vertigo25 (91 comments total) 33 users marked this as a favorite

 
I feel like we must already have this FPP, but that may just be because it seems like Joss Whedon can't walk down the street without someone making a post about it.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 3:20 PM on June 29, 2008 [2 favorites]


Did he write this during the strike? I only ask because it sounds like he did and as I recall, any writing during the strike was frowned upon, was it not?
posted by Effigy2000 at 3:25 PM on June 29, 2008


Coming July 15

Maybe post this then?
posted by basicchannel at 3:28 PM on June 29, 2008


the thing that bothers me is:

some one keeps moving my chair.
posted by stubby phillips at 3:34 PM on June 29, 2008 [11 favorites]


I figured it had been posted, too, but couldn't find anything.

Coming July 15th, but disappearing July 20th.

The episodes will be put up on the 15th, the 17th, and the 19th; but will be taken down on the 20th. The idea is that they're going to try to sell them via iTunes and DVD (with extras).

My reasoning behind posting this now was that the "teaser trailer" and the "master plan" were just released within the past few days.
posted by vertigo25 at 3:36 PM on June 29, 2008


I heard Joss Whedon farted, once.
posted by loiseau at 3:37 PM on June 29, 2008


I think you could write whatever the hell you want if it wasn't for a studio or a producer.

Thanks for posting this, I'd forgotten about it. But now I'm on the mailing list, so I won't be able to forget.
posted by Caduceus at 3:44 PM on June 29, 2008


And Joss's forehead is indeed scary huge.
posted by Caduceus at 3:46 PM on June 29, 2008


Felicia Day is awesome. :)
posted by aeschenkarnos at 3:46 PM on June 29, 2008 [1 favorite]


Hey, you forgot to link to the MPAMH.
posted by effbot at 3:53 PM on June 29, 2008


This looks awesome.
posted by sonic meat machine at 4:05 PM on June 29, 2008


Thanks
posted by poppo at 4:09 PM on June 29, 2008


Good to see that Joss hasn't given up on TV entirely. Thanks.
posted by msamye at 4:25 PM on June 29, 2008


Thanks for posting this! I'm excited to see it - it has some of my favorite actors and looks like great fun.
posted by rednikki at 4:46 PM on June 29, 2008


Did he write this during the strike?

There was some shit about singing mushrooms and elderberries in the 'master plan' that sort of suggests he did, but it's not terribly clear.

Whatever, Dr. Scab's Scab-a-long Scab! is a way better title.
posted by jack_mo at 5:02 PM on June 29, 2008


THIS IS GONNA BE LEGEN--
posted by darkripper at 5:25 PM on June 29, 2008 [1 favorite]


--DARY!

I had to. You were hanging there for, like, 20 minutes.
posted by sdodd at 5:43 PM on June 29, 2008 [1 favorite]


Fox just cancelled it.
posted by Artw at 5:45 PM on June 29, 2008 [22 favorites]


The web campaign to have it resurrected has been around for, like, hours.

(and they've already raised more money than McCain '08)
posted by eclectist at 5:51 PM on June 29, 2008 [3 favorites]


As far as I recall, it wasn't actually written during the strike, but it was conceived during the strike, in part due to discussions Joss had with Felicia, since she's been doing her own web series The Guild for awhile now.
posted by theonetruebix at 5:56 PM on June 29, 2008


I'm really looking forward to this - but what a crappy post.
posted by crossoverman at 6:14 PM on June 29, 2008


Someone has already bought out an entire movie theatre's worth of tickets in the hope that Joss Whedon will one day make a movie adaptation of Dr. Horrible that will tank at the box office but raise unrealistic hopes for a sequel.
posted by chrominance at 8:04 PM on June 29, 2008


Now, now crossoverman. You've been around here long enough to know that this is how MeFi rolls.
posted by theonetruebix at 8:25 PM on June 29, 2008


Now, now crossoverman. You've been around here long enough to know that this is how MeFi rolls.

A link to two Myspace pages, a link to the anemic official site and a link to the trailer on the phrase "Joss' announcement". I know Joss said to spread the word, but the word could have stood to be previewed and re-written.

Joss' announcement, FWIW. (Oh, I love the man - but the announcement might have been better in a less Jossian, more professional style.)
posted by crossoverman at 10:07 PM on June 29, 2008


Doogie Howser is a scab.
Captain Tightpants is a scab.
Vi is a potentional scab.
Numfar is doing the dance of scab.
Zack Whedon is a scab.
Jed Wh... Jed? Really?
posted by stavrogin at 12:07 AM on June 30, 2008


Did he write this during the strike? I only ask because it sounds like he did and as I recall, any writing during the strike was frowned upon, was it not?

Not if you are writing for yourself - the strike was Writers Guild vs Studios about contracts with regard to new media profits. Lots of writers took the opportunity to futz around with that self-same media during the strike and Youtube et al showed a lot of growth during the period Also, individual situations existed, such as David Letterman being able to get his writers back on board earlier because Worldwide Pants is essentially his own studio so he could reach an interim arrangement.

In this sense, Dr. Horrible is Joss messing about with a video camera in his back yard with his mates (it just so happens his mates are all professionals) for his own amusement and on his own dime.
posted by Sparx at 3:36 AM on June 30, 2008


This would happen the weekend I'm out of state at a friend's wedding with no laptop. That and the effing Batman premiere.

My friend is shit at wedding planning.
posted by middleclasstool at 6:33 AM on June 30, 2008 [1 favorite]


Did he write this during the strike? I only ask because it sounds like he did and as I recall, any writing during the strike was frowned upon, was it not?

The rule was, WGA writers couldn't write for struck companies during the strike. So they could write other stuff-- blog posts, comic books, independent short films to be released outside any of the studios. Check the strike threads from here around that time if you're interested in knowing more-- it was explained a lot. This film is a result of the strike, since essentially it is Joss and others experimenting with internet distribution as an alternative to the studio model of doing business.

And count me among those who were going to FPP this when it was actually, you know, available.
posted by Tehanu at 7:09 AM on June 30, 2008


...a link to the trailer on the phrase "Joss' announcement"...

Woops. I didn't even notice that. I had meant to link to the "Master Plan."
posted by vertigo25 at 7:11 AM on June 30, 2008


Whedon interview (mild spoilers).
posted by Tehanu at 8:46 AM on June 30, 2008


Good to see that Joss hasn't given up on TV entirely. Thanks.

See also.
posted by Tehanu at 8:49 AM on June 30, 2008


The fact that it has Neil Patrick Harris and Nathan Fillion makes me believe that our cold black universe is not completely devoid of awesome.
posted by quin at 9:45 AM on June 30, 2008


Sorry, Joss. I already saw one shitty movie this summer with a "cute girl" named Penny. I have my limits.
posted by Squeak Attack at 10:42 AM on June 30, 2008


Trailer on Youtube.
posted by Tehanu at 7:42 PM on June 30, 2008


[quietly muttering "DollHouse" repeatedly to himself, in a corner of the room, behind a potted plant, freaking everybody out.]
posted by ZachsMind at 7:58 PM on June 30, 2008


...whut?
posted by ZachsMind at 12:43 AM on July 1, 2008


Sorry, Joss. I already saw one shitty movie this summer with a "cute girl" named Penny. I have my limits.

I saw a bad Batman movie once. I will never watch a movie with a dude in a black cape again.
posted by Tehanu at 6:53 AM on July 1, 2008


There is a Dr. Horrible comic! With creepy undertones!
posted by Tehanu at 6:09 PM on July 2, 2008


Internet rumor has it that the first act launches at 12:01 AM Pacific, 3 AM Eastern tonight/tomorrow/in the deep dark of the night.

Twitter feed: preparing for launch...

Behind the scenes photos on Facebook.

The comments by whoever is writing the Twitter and Facebook updates, and well as comments during the interviews, gives a distinct impression that the senses of humor involved are similar:

Sorry...Joss on Best Week Ever happens NEXT Friday, the 18th. Which is also Jed's birthday. And the opening of Batman Begins. Holy shit, what to do what to do.

A little later:
The Dark Knight! The Dark Knight!

Man...I should quit drinking.

posted by Tehanu at 11:48 AM on July 14, 2008


Internet rumor was wrong. It goes live at 12:01 AM EDT. On two servers.
posted by Tehanu at 4:20 PM on July 14, 2008


More photos.
posted by Tehanu at 6:41 PM on July 14, 2008


drhorrible.com has crashed, and Whedonesque seems to be reeling from traffic as well.
posted by Tehanu at 11:22 AM on July 15, 2008


Whedonesque is officially "disabled," and a fan site and Felicia Day's site are down as well.
posted by Tehanu at 11:58 AM on July 15, 2008


They must have beefed up the servers because I'm having no problems accessing it from here.

I could so totally watch Neil Patrick Harris snark directly into a camera all day.

"Wow, sarcasm... that's original."

Fillion is fucking great as well.
posted by quin at 1:14 PM on July 15, 2008


Yeah, they've been busy moving to a new "monster server" as their twitter feed calls it. Their site still doesn't load for me, but I got the video off of iTunes earlier.

I could watch Neil Patrick Harris read fan mail all day.
posted by Tehanu at 1:43 PM on July 15, 2008


Heh, I wonder if we'll see Bad Horse.
posted by Tenuki at 7:19 PM on July 15, 2008


Ep 1 was oodles of fun. I'm really hoping I can get back into town without missing the other two.
posted by middleclasstool at 9:28 PM on July 15, 2008


I like how he actually says BTW in conversation. I would like to see Bad Horse and hear his terrifying death whinny.
posted by Tehanu at 8:23 AM on July 16, 2008


the songs, they are so catchy!
posted by Solon and Thanks at 9:13 AM on July 16, 2008


Is that Serenity in Dr. Horrible's window in the opening scene?
posted by vertigo25 at 8:38 PM on July 16, 2008


Is that Serenity...

As much as I would love that, the proportions look wrong. I'm pretty sure it's just some pots and pans. Hopefully a subsequent episode will reveal the dark evils of Dr. Horrible's kitchen and we can get a better look.
posted by quin at 8:57 PM on July 16, 2008


Is that Serenity in Dr. Horrible's window in the opening scene?

No, it's pots and pans. Confirmed by the guy whose house they filmed it at. It's clearer in the iTunes version. There's a photo out there too that shows it better.

Act 2 is up on the site, but it's not on iTunes yet.
posted by Tehanu at 8:34 AM on July 17, 2008


Joss Whedon has a PhD in horribleness.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 10:00 PM on July 18, 2008


Captain Hammer will save us...
posted by Tenuki at 10:40 PM on July 18, 2008


Can I change my username to "The Thoroughbred of Sin"?

Loved the first two episodes. The third one was predictable and charmless.
posted by ten pounds of inedita at 1:52 AM on July 19, 2008


ten pounds of inedita get the prize for most soulless ratbag on metafilter since the last person to argue with Konolia.

The 3rd episode was a) in a much different key b) less funny and c) totally awesome. Show me on the internets where you completely predicted how it would end and then we can talk
posted by Sparx at 6:03 AM on July 19, 2008


Are you kidding? Protagonist succeeds at great personal cost, woman loved by all is destroyed. It's like Whedon has one rubber stamp he uses for his final acts.

Predictable and charmless. Much like yourself, I'm sure.
posted by ten pounds of inedita at 10:29 AM on July 19, 2008


ten pounds of inedita: "Loved the first two episodes. The third one was predictable and charmless."

You have GOT to be kidding me! I'm just gonna pretend you're Joss Whedon himself trolling for laughs cuz I can't even argue with this bland and dismissive write-off of the third act. It was UNpredictable and charmING! How about that!? Top THAT with your thesaurus!

Fillion is hilarious. It's great seeing him play the bad guy for once.

Harris has once again proven he's more amazing than anyone ever gives him credit for (and I used to scoff at him during his Doogie Howser days). And I know that's a dangling preposition and I don't care! Insert maniacal laughter here.

Felicia Day deserves ten times more kudos and songs of praise than she will ever get in her lifetime cuz she's the hottest uber geek with a brain and kickass legs. Not that I'm crushin' on her or anything cuz... okay maybe I'm crushing on her a little bit but she can make her own webpage which is really fucking hot for some reason I'd probably find disturbing if I dwelled on it so let's move on, shall we?

Dr. Horrible's SingAlong is a fun romp for the whole family. Five stars. Joe Bob says check it out, and ignore the naysayers who, when The Day Of Armaggeddon comes, will go like, "they had better special effects on Ice Pirates and I SO knew the four horsemen were gonna dance - the director telegraphed it. So unimpressed."
posted by ZachsMind at 11:38 AM on July 19, 2008


You also like Gail "It's not misogyny if a woman writes it" Simone, so I'm not sure you're the arbiter of taste here, fanboy.

No, I'm not kidding. The third act doesn't really deserve any more than bland dismissal. First two acts: teh awesome, eight stars each. Third act: should be avoided.

Come to think of it, I'm trying to think of any final act in any Whedon's portfolio that 'works'. It's a good ride up until the end (Buffy, Astonishing X-Men, Angel, Firefly) and then a woman loved by all is killed (honestly, Wash was the woman in that relationship) and the protagonists win at great personal cost. And it always feels rushed. And the tone is always skewed from the first acts, leading to a lack of unity. I like Whedon's writing, but he's proving to be a one-note cowboy.

When the only season of Dollhouse is eventually released on DVD, I'll probably watch the first two discs and skip the third.
posted by ten pounds of inedita at 11:54 AM on July 19, 2008


Ten Pounds of Inedita: "The third act doesn't really deserve any more than bland dismissal."

Then you must be Whedon's third act, Ten Pounds of Bland Dismissal.

...and GAIL SIMONE IS A SAINT!!!
posted by ZachsMind at 12:59 PM on July 19, 2008


I used to get tired of my criticisms of works or creators that slavering fen consider untouchable being responded to by personal attacks. But then I realized that I live a full and rewarding life, and they don't. Remember, kids, if you shower at least daily, the Cheetoz crumbs wash out of your beards.
posted by ten pounds of inedita at 1:19 PM on July 19, 2008


Come to think of it, I'm trying to think of any final act in any Whedon's portfolio that 'works'. It's a good ride up until the end (Buffy, Astonishing X-Men, Angel, Firefly) and then a woman loved by all is killed (honestly, Wash was the woman in that relationship) and the protagonists win at great personal cost. And it always feels rushed. And the tone is always skewed from the first acts, leading to a lack of unity. I like Whedon's writing, but he's proving to be a one-note cowboy.

You have just hit the nail on the head. I got exactly the same let-down from watching Act III that I did from Serenity. I'm trying hard not to let it detract from the fact that the first two parts are, in fact, the Best Thing Ever (tm).

On preview: yikes, that didn't take long to deteriorate...
posted by teraflop at 1:35 PM on July 19, 2008


Deterioration is inevitable. Only in the fan world are reviews like:

o "First two acts of Dr. Horrible were brilliant, third fell flat"
o "8.8 rating for Zelda: Twilight Princess", or
o "TMBG's The Else is fun and worth buying but breaks no new ground"

grounds for vitriolic rejoinders. Everyone has to agree that it's a perfect, shining jewel or you're a "soulless ratbag".

So I step in to remind the fanboys that they're broken and worthless and don't really count as people, and that the hentai store closes at 6 if they need to have a mutually masturbatory discussion about how the objects of their obsession are so great and unflawed. At the end of the day, I've often forgotten that I even watched the show but they still quake with rage that someone disagreed with them and will bring that attitude back with them the next time someone gives their deeply-loved fanservice a B grade.

Anyhow. Yeah, the first two episodes were gold and I can't pick a favourite part or song. Leaning towards "Brand New Day".
posted by ten pounds of inedita at 2:05 PM on July 19, 2008


Neil Patrick Harris is one of the most underused actors out there. Will someone please give him a juicy fucking part.
posted by fullerine at 2:50 PM on July 19, 2008


Are you serious? Barney Stinson is the best character ever made.
posted by darkripper at 3:46 PM on July 19, 2008


I just saw Dr. Horrible yesterday for the first time. I was out of town when this post was made and I never caught up, and wouldn't have ever seen it if not for a link from Penny Arcade yesterday.

I don't agree with the tone, but I agree with the message, of ten pounds of snarkanite.

The first 2 acts were literally glee-inducing. I was mesmerized and was thinking, just for a brief moment, "hey, we might be on to something new here".

Then, the 3rd act fell like a limp dishrag.

You could see it coming, literally, a mile away. Seriously. If you couldn't, then you either were distracted by something else and not watching, or you were willfully ignoring the big glowing neon lights everywhere.

I mean, by the time the conflict actually begins, how else COULD it have ended? For god's sake it was foreshadowed in Act I, like it always is.

Anyway, NPH is awesome. I truly enjoy his work since he's grown up. Barney Stinson is indeed a dream of a character to play. You get to chew the scenery with every single line. How awesome is that?

Joss Whedon fans are silly,
they stress out every day
when it's suggested
that he's just okay.
So here's a resolution
or at least a better way;

Accept he's flawed.
Forget the bores.
There's always Buffy.
Signed, Bad Horse
posted by Ynoxas at 8:32 PM on July 19, 2008 [3 favorites]


Bad Horse was an actual horse? Come on, who saw that coming?

I found the tone shift in the third act to be somewhat unwanted, but I can see why he did it. Overall, I have to say that as a project it succeeded, and my estimation of all three actors involved are even higher than before.

Which is saying a lot, because my feelings for them were pretty positive to begin with.
posted by quin at 5:25 PM on July 20, 2008


Come on, who saw that coming?

"That terrible...death...whinny" and "he rules the League with an iron hoof" didn't strike me as metaphorical.

Act III is growing on me.
posted by ten pounds of inedita at 5:37 PM on July 20, 2008


When I was going through it, I was capturing snippets of song in mp3 form, presuming it might be awhile before I have the whole thing in DVD. I could pick out songs in the first two parts.

From a perspective of sound, there is not a decent place to cut in the third act. From beginning to end it flows very nicely. Yes it turns dark from late in the second act when Dr. Horrible launches into Brand New Day. Yes I'd have to say I was expecting Nathan Fillion's solo song to be better than it was because Whedon made us wait through the first two acts to hear it so I was expecting hilarity and I got a couple few chuckles out of it.

But to rag on the plot? Of course the plot is predictable! Whedon wasn't trying to rewrite War & Peace here for Christ's sake. He was proving a point: he doesn't have to write for television or the movie theater to entertain. The internet is yet another medium. To prove his point, he went with what he know works. There's no reinventing the wheel here. Whedon is purposefully riding the same horse in a new venue.

Yes! Of COURSE it's formulaic! It's the genre! You don't tell people you're gonna write a murder mystery and then purposefully avoid having a murder in it cuz that's just what the audience expects me to do. The movie "The Wiz" worked all those years ago cuz they took the story of Wizard of Oz and put it into a (then) modern day urban setting. However, everything else about the story had to be familiar to the audience, otherwise they wouldn't have been able to follow along and appreciate what the people behind the film wanted to say.

Whedon was purposefully turning the superhero genre on its head in "Dr. H", by making the bad guy the good guy and vice versa, but in order to make THAT work, he must otherwise stay true to the formula. The final seconds of Act 3 wouldn't have made any sense at all if he'd strayed from the formula.

Someone familiar with the work of Beethoven or Bach is no less thrilled to hear repeated motifs or similarities from one work to the next by the same composer. You don't hear a fan of Mozart go, "I can't believe he keeps using the horn section like that. How utterly predictable."
posted by ZachsMind at 10:29 PM on July 20, 2008


Just to clarify, I'm not saying the fact that it was predictable makes it "bad".

I was just backing up what ten pounds said about it being predictable. Others were saying pretty much the opposite, which is absurd.

I did think Act III fell flat, but not necessarily because of the predictability, but it just seemed like it didn't fully deliver. I was disappointed, so I said so. I was also a little surprised by the people who were claiming the ending was some sort of unforeseeable twist.

That was my main point. The ending was as surprising as the end of your typical "Little House on the Prairie" episode. But again, that doesn't make it bad or a failure. It is what it is, as Zach said above.

I was quite pleased with the production, even though in total I don't consider it to be as groundbreaking as I thought it was going to be after the first 2 acts. But it doesn't have to be revolutionary to be good. And, as was said above, the medium is the revolutionary (maybe) part, not the story.

I obviously liked it, as witnessed by my Bad Horse song. I came within a breath of registering Bad Horse as a sockpuppet.

So, overall, 4 out of 5 stars. Solid production, great music, and rather entertaining.
posted by Ynoxas at 8:00 AM on July 21, 2008


I liked Act 3. I certainly didn't expect Dr. Horrible to join the League. And not that way.
posted by Tehanu at 8:32 AM on July 21, 2008


I don't hate Act III. But I'm disappointed that Joss chose such an uninspired ending. He could have done better had he not settled for the cheap trope. There's no way anyone can argue that what we were given was an original or creative ending.

Still, though, NPH sold it and did an excellent job. I hope Penny comes back as a zombie or something in the much-discussed sequels (?) because Felicia Day is too excellent to lose.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 6:50 PM on July 21, 2008


Salon and Thanks: "There's no way anyone can argue that what we were given was an original or creative ending."

Actually, I can.

The fact you were EXPECTING an 'original and creative ending' means that what Joss delivered was not expected. He turned the villain into the protagonist, and the hero into the antagonist. What did you want? To see the "protagonist" fail? How would that have been original?

If you didn't like Act 3, it's because you wanted Dr. Horrible to get the girl, but not end up in the league. In other words, you wanted him to turn into the classic definition of a hero. Now, THAT woulda been sadly predictable and boring.

Instead, Joss grants Dr. Horrible 'everything but the girl' which makes him "a tragic hero" in the classic sense, but he retains his villian standing. The protagonist gets to stay true to himself. It would have been safe and trite if Whedon had made Dr. Horrible turn over a new leaf at the end. Instead, he rises to his station, and achieves the greatness upon which he aspired at the very beginning. The villain-protagonist wins. The hero-antagonist fails. The romantic ingenue dies.

The more I think about it, the better this ending gets. Any other ending wouldn't have been ...civilized.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:27 PM on July 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


"Still, though, NPH sold it and did an excellent job. I hope Penny comes back as a zombie or something in the much-discussed sequels (?) because Felicia Day is too excellent to lose."

Agreed. I'd like to see the sequel focusing on Felicia Day coming back from the dead with the impression she is humanity's liason to Mother Earth - a force of nature whose powers dwarf those of her previous suitors, and Horrible and Hammer are forced to set aside their differences to somehow subdue this greater force.

I'd have Penny use power over earth and plantlife to turn all the golf courses of the world into homeless shelters, but then I always love stealing from George Carlin. =) Imagine though: all the world's golf courses stolen by force from the wealthy of the world and given over to the poor and destitute. This is something that'd bring both villain and hero together. Especially if they both like to play golf.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:36 PM on July 22, 2008


Joss Whedon Talks 'Dr. Horrible,' 'Dollhouse' and More
Arlington, Va.: Does The Tick live near Dr. Horrible? Moist totally gives it away.

Joss Whedon: The Tick lives IN Dr. Horrible. Ben Edlund was going to do the piece with us but had to drop out. "Bad Horse" was a character he'd pitched incessantly on "Angel" ("How could he make a radioactive device using only HOOVES?!?!?!?") so I wanted that in, and the first thing Ben pitched for this was Moist. But he had to bail right at the beginning. Much sadness, as he's also a great songwriter. (And has an amazing singing voice. On the serious. Get him to do an album.)
posted by Tenuki at 5:23 AM on July 23, 2008


Here's another angle on the predictable and charmless argument. The three act piece is chock full of 'predictable' plot tropes, but often used in stylistically lavish and unique ways. When the bad guy is the good guy and the good guy is the bad guy, the whole world is topsy-turvy, so the blatant abuse of tired and over used plot devices becomes utterly charming.

It's like storytelling by lego set. Yes. All these pieces of storytelling have been used to death before, but what if we put them together in a different order under a new set of laws? Yes some of it will be familiar and some of it will be not so familiar, and even when you see something you think is familiar, it won't be cuz you see it from a new angle.
posted by ZachsMind at 6:45 PM on July 23, 2008


...Sweet!
posted by ZachsMind at 12:08 AM on July 24, 2008


They've just announced at Comic-Con that there's going to be a Part IV. See here and here.
posted by Tehanu at 2:20 PM on July 25, 2008


Also the soundtrack should be available for download soon, and there's going to be a contest where people send in 3-minute video applications to the Evil League of Evil and the best 10 go on the DVD. Apparently
posted by Tehanu at 2:41 PM on July 25, 2008


Apparently... I was going to say something else?
posted by Tehanu at 2:44 PM on July 25, 2008


I remembered. Apparently the van remote was/is a website.
posted by Tehanu at 2:58 PM on July 25, 2008 [1 favorite]


When Buffy's Once More With Feeling came out some years ago, I got mp3s of the songs as soon as I could, and a year later the official soundtrack came out. By then I had played the mp3 CD I made to death (I really dig Amber Benson's voice, and Marster's "Rest In Peace" is fun to sing along with while driving) and they were at 128bps which is okay, but it's just not the same as having the actual 'official' CD. So I felt like a tool buying it, because I essentially already had all the material, but it had cool extras and looked purty, and I just got the warm fuzzies having the official disc, not that it means anything but it made me happy.

The mp3s I managed to grab when Dr. H was free have already worn thin on me. The quality isn't what I'd like cuz I was in a hurry when I made them. I shoulda tweaked the volume better and just recorded all three eps in their entirety but I was trying to just grab the songs.

In short, the 'official' CD soundtrack for Dr. H could not be released any sooner. Brand New Day by itself would be worth the cost.

And news there will be a "part four"? The only news that could top that for me, would be learning that Felicia Day WILL be in it.

I know Penny's dead. This is fiction. Off the top of my head I can think of a half dozen ways to bring her back to life, and I can't write for doodie squirts.
posted by ZachsMind at 5:44 PM on July 25, 2008


...what I mean is someone more talented than me at writing can probably think of twenty ways to bring Penny back, and they'd all be better than my measley half dozen.
posted by ZachsMind at 5:58 PM on July 25, 2008


The easiest thing is always zombies. Plus, singing zombie!
posted by Tehanu at 6:13 PM on July 25, 2008


I thought of Zombie but I don't think Day can convincingly pull off the "brains" dialogue that must go with it. She's a talented actress but that kind of role takes a special finesse.

Actually my first choice would be to show that the night after she's buried, a mysterious glow emanates from her grave and then we witness her climbing out of her own grave with glowing green eyes. She accosts a couple kids who snuck into the graveyard to make out, and we learn in the altercation that she's now quite mad and believes she's been given a second chance for life by the Spirit of Gaia Herself - so Penny renames herself Daughter Nature, and begins speaking about herself all the time in the third person which is deliciously annoying.

She then goes off on a Mad Activist Spree using the power to control earth (including dirt and plantlife), air, water, and fire. Off camera we learn she's decimated major cities like Atlanta (converted it into one big Japanese Garden and Bird Sanctuary), New Orleans (pushed it all underwater and dubbed it New Atlantis), and Fargo North Dakota (she accidently sent the entire city out into space when she sneezed, but hardly anyone noticed its absence).

Meanwhile, Dr. Horrible and Captain Hammer have been busy once again facing off, but just as they both think they've gotten the upper hand in battle, Penny interferes with her own plans to save Mother Earth by ridding the world of golf courses and turning them into homeless shelters. Hammer and Horrible both drop what they were doing and take turns trying to dote on her and win her affections but she's nonplussed and obsessed with helping homeless people and showing them how to build compost latrines and solar panels.

However, Penny soon learns that homeless people do not share her love for mother Earth and therefore she decides in order to protect the Earth from humanity she must destroy humanity. Suddenly, Hammer and Horrible have a mutual enemy. Even villains don't want humanity destroyed cuz then who would they victimize? And without humanity, heroes would have no admirers. Both Horrible and Hammer dismiss the idea that they would become extinct along with the rest of humanity.

By the end of the piece, it would be revealed by complete accident that Penny's grave just happened to be on top of a nuclear waste dump, which mutated her DNA, and her powers are not from Mother Earth at all but instead the very stuff that's allegedly poisoning the planet. This calms her down a bit.

Hammer suggests she turn to heroic deeds. Horrible offers her a place by his side with the Evil League of Evil. She ditches both of them and goes to Vegas where she performs four shows a week impressing stupid humans with her elemental energies, the press argues whether or not it's all special effects, and she makes an insane amount of money.

....

But hey! SINGING ZOMBIE is just a lot easier. Less words, and everybody knows what you're talking about.
posted by ZachsMind at 7:24 PM on July 25, 2008


I was joking. She's dead, dude.

I wasn't joking about the general idea of singing zombies though. I think that's a win. Just not for Dr. Horrible.
posted by Tehanu at 8:41 AM on July 28, 2008


The fact you were EXPECTING an 'original and creative ending' means that what Joss delivered was not expected.

If you didn't like Act 3, it's because you wanted Dr. Horrible to get the girl, but not end up in the league. In other words, you wanted him to turn into the classic definition of a hero. Now, THAT woulda been sadly predictable and boring.


Okay, I guess you're right in that Joss surprised me by writing the least creative and original ending possible. My fault for expecting a better level of creativity.

Actually, I didn't like Act 3 because I think Penny was the ultimate "Hero" of the series and I think she would have been a fantastic foil (in personality and in singing ability) for Dr. Horrible, who would be in the League (for killing Captain Hammer?) but not get the girl at all. I would have been much more interested in that. I have no idea where you're getting your assumption about what I want from.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 9:24 AM on July 28, 2008


(I'll note for others, who didn't have the same reaction as I did, that my reaction to the ending was surprise. But not "Wow! Cool! This is unexpected!" but "Wow. Really. He's going to end it the way every single origins story has ever been ended, huh? Okay, well, let's see how this goes."

I mean, imagine if on Buffy, Angel wasn't some angsty-dude but instead her knight in shining armor who saves her whenever she's confronted by the worst baddies. It would be surprising but also disappointing, right? And it would also fit in nicely would most established stories. (Though they're being subverted more and more often these days.)

I'm not saying the ending of Dr. Horrible was anything as bad as that, though it shares similar qualities, but I hope it helps the "people who loved it" see the POV of the "people that thought it was okay but are ultimately disappointed they went with such an established idea."
posted by Solon and Thanks at 9:36 AM on July 28, 2008


This is unexpected!" but "Wow. Really. He's going to end it the way every single origins story has ever been ended,

Nt only that but every way West Side Story has ended as well.

I'm not saying the ending of Dr. Horrible was anything as bad as that, though it shares similar qualities, but I hope it helps the "people who loved it" see the POV of the "people that thought it was okay but are ultimately disappointed they went with such an established idea."


I can only imagine they will be up there in sympathy with those that didn't see Romeo and Juliet, West Story, Blood Brothers, and possibly some others heading along.


The tale is in the telling. Someone dying is about as exciting as hearing that a gun goes off in a Checkov play. Name the character and the situation in the first act and you might have a point. - if you cannot go there beforehand, accusations of predictableness are very lame.
posted by Sparx at 5:37 PM on July 28, 2008


They seem to have rethought the iTunes exclusive strategy. It's back(?) up on Hulu.
posted by Tehanu at 7:23 AM on July 29, 2008


And Joss Whedon wrote an entry for the Hulu blog.
posted by Tehanu at 10:50 AM on July 29, 2008


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