Horrible Turn
November 13, 2009 9:16 AM   Subscribe

Fans of Dr. Horrible take note: there is a prequel. And it's fan-made. And it's good. Really really good. YouTube (ten segments) and higher-quality Vimeo available for your viewing pleasure.
posted by hippybear (18 comments total) 24 users marked this as a favorite
I was so upset to learn that it was premiering here in Houston, and I didn't learn about it early enough to go see it! GRRRRRRR!
posted by greekphilosophy at 9:25 AM on November 13, 2009

I loved Dr. Horrible, but I didn't really like this. Great camera though. More info on the creators?
posted by Malice at 10:04 AM on November 13, 2009

Definitely a prequel, definitely fan-made, definitely good, if by "good" we mean "good at mimicking the look and feel of the original while throwing in the occasional (somewhat hamhanded) reference." But "really really good"? I'm afraid I have to disagree there. It breaks my heart, too, because I can tell how much effort went into this, but to be honest, the writing lacks the charm and wit of Dr. Horrible, the characters are all one-note caricatures, the acting is wooden, and the songs are forced and unmemorable. A+ for effort; C- for execution--the kind of thing I'd definitely think was awesome if my friends made it but, since they didn't, I don't feel any obligation to enjoy. Or maybe the FPP just raised my expectations too high.
posted by albrecht at 10:05 AM on November 13, 2009

There seems to be a bit more info about them in this Entertainment Weekly blog post.
posted by hippybear at 10:06 AM on November 13, 2009

I didn't want to be the first to piss on what is clearly a labor of love, and I'll try not to. Yes, the production values are excellent, especially for a fan work. The writing, though, is bad. And unfortunately the writing was almost all of what made Dr. Horrible great. So, yeah. Well done anyway. I mean it about the production. They should be really proud of that.
posted by rusty at 10:10 AM on November 13, 2009

I'll stick up for this. I loved Dr. Horrible, but I can't remember any of the songs at all. That "Australia" song is very funny, in a "I am aware I am a ridiculous song in a musical" way. That's as far as I've gotten so far.
posted by 23skidoo at 10:19 AM on November 13, 2009 [1 favorite]

It took me a few minutes to warm up to it, but warm up I did. The second half is better than the first, so stick with it. Overall, really well done.
posted by schoolgirl report at 10:57 AM on November 13, 2009

It had me at the pith-helmeted cop!
posted by Danf at 11:10 AM on November 13, 2009

Danf: It had me at the pith-helmeted cop!

Well, I am amused that his line was pure Han Solo from Star Wars.
posted by WCityMike at 11:30 AM on November 13, 2009

Awh, I disagree with the haters. I think it's adorable.
+1 for the Prodigy reference too.
posted by june made him a gemini at 12:22 PM on November 13, 2009 [1 favorite]

By fan film standards, it's not bad. For a crew who've never made a film before, it's pretty damn impressive. And the songs are where it really shines. I hope these folks can use this as a springboard to make something original - I'll definitely check it out when they do.
posted by mgrichmond at 1:06 PM on November 13, 2009

It's cute! And even more homoerotic than the original!
posted by The otter lady at 1:52 PM on November 13, 2009

I enjoyed it. Especially the stuff after the credits.

It's not perfect, but it's 100 times better than *most* fan-made stuff. It's derivative, sure, but redeems itself by being aware of that and even poking fun of the fact.

It's my sincerest hope that the people who were involved will go on to do original works. I got the very strong impression (especially from the gag reel) that they have good chemistry with each other and had a lot of fun making it. Now, if they apply that to some original stuff, I think they'll have a ready made audience.
posted by vertigo25 at 4:27 PM on November 13, 2009

I was certain that this would be terrible.

But it wasn't. Far from it. This looked good, it sounded good, and--hell--I laughed out loud a few times. Good for them to conceive this and see it through.
posted by ColdChef at 4:28 PM on November 13, 2009 [1 favorite]

Well, I for one really liked it. I thought it was well done in a tongue in cheek way (the "Dahlhouse" truck made me LOL). It was obviously a fan made thing, but the production value was great. The guy who played Captain Hammer was note-perfect on the gesturing and posturing, IMHO. I really hope they get lots of opportunities stemming from this, they deserve it.
posted by gemmy at 6:26 PM on November 13, 2009

Apart from that "Australian" accent, it was pretty good.
posted by robcorr at 7:40 PM on November 13, 2009

Well, just sat through the 63-minute video.

It was one hell of a lot better than I expected, given the comments here. Just out of curiousity, did those who commented negatively on it watch the whole thing? In our short-attention-span culture, I think we tend to not give things time to develop: we want instant quality now, damn it! And if you gave time to this to let it bake, it really turned out to be pretty damn decent by film's end.

I did have a few problems. Spoilers for both this and the original Horrible follow!

First, I'm sorry, but the instant the concept of Love Potion No. 10 was rolled out, I knew that was going to be how Hammer became so irrationally beloved by the populace. It was just too obvious. I don't know if it would've been less obvious if the line about "I don't even want to think about what would happen if one person took it" was pruned; I think the expository dialogue probably could have been made less obvious.

Second, I really would've punched that moment of Katie calling him a loser far greater -- given it the proper treatment for the place it had in the plot, the equivalent of Penny being mortally wounded by shrapnel in the original Horrible. In fact, it really is a death of sorts, an "identity death": the sweet ingenue-Katie "dies", replaced by the cold nasty Hammerfan-Katie. It's the catalyst for the first-stage transformation of Billy (who had aspired to heroic acts) to Horrible (villainy), and it's really only given a tossaway line. I also think that the garage being emptied out wasn't necessary -- it was a second 'tragedy' too quickly following the first, and as such, I think it diluted the main tragedy. Katie was enough to snap him, especially if her sweetness being eliminated was played up.

Third, Billy got far too dark far too quickly and severely! In the final number, we see Billy essentially jumping from Billy all the way over to the morality of the red-suited Dr. Horrible we see at the end of the original Horrible. It makes for a dramatic contrast, but it isn't faithful to where Billy is at the start of Horrible itself.

That having been said, the movie's fairly amazing, in my opinion. The production values (cinematography, lighting, etc.) were excellent.

The music was good, although, frankly, the show was overlong and I think a number or two could've been cut. Frankly, I'd cut out the Bad Filly Chorus numbers and "Hammerhead"; none of those conveyed sentiments that were enhanced by being in song, and the Bad Fillies, because they were fairly senseless and didn't have any grounding in the plot (as opposed to the Bad Horse Chorus), were homages just for the sake of homages.

And these actors very convincingly channeled their Horrible characters. The guy playing Hammer was spot-on with the way that Fillion portrayed Hammer, not only with attitude but with voice.

Billy was pretty damn close, and he's got the facial features needed – NPH can flip from innocent to enraged-sinister, and so can this guy.

Although Katie wasn't a Penny, she was sort of a pseudo-Penny, and did a pretty good job channeling Felicia Day.

Moist (which had to be his friend Wade Canard -- both names being water references) wasn't really given much to do, but, then again, he really didn't have much to do in Horrible, so there wasn't much to channel.

And I thought the idea of Puddy as a sidekick for Hammer was hilarious. There were two stingers after the credits, a Australia beach scene, and a love ballad from "Puddy" to Hammer – worth catching if you missed it, if only for someone working "blunt force trauma" into song lyrics.

By the way, Joss has seen it and thought it was "adorable" and "itsy kitschy glitzy"/"itsy kitsy goody".
posted by WCityMike at 11:28 PM on November 13, 2009 [1 favorite]

Not canon.
posted by Effigy2000 at 3:39 AM on November 14, 2009

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