This weeks two hour Dollhouse was kind of half and half for me this week. The first hour felt like a completely different show from what we had been watching and I didn’t like it as much as I liked the second hour.
In the first hour we see Echo struggling to survive. She goes into a store but doesn’t have money. She sees the clerk refuse food stamps from a Mexican girl. As the girl leaves Echo steals some food, runs outside and shoves it int he girls arms. The police show up at that moment and arrest the Mexican girl. They try to get Echo but her super powers kick in and she beats up the cop. Then we jump to her being a nurse. This was were the show kind of lost me. I know Joss Whedon loves to play with timelines and puts a lot of faith in his viewers to catch up. Maybe his faith in me was too much because I could not make the timeline match up. We learn that Echo found Ballard by calling his cell phone and trained with him for 3 months! Now that seems like a really long time for the Mexican girl to be in jail. Echo apparently is working to help her escape but still that’s a long time to be in jail. Echo is channeling all of her personalities now but is having headaches because there is too much in her head. So we see Echo frees the girl, who miraculously has learned english (when the whole episode she could only speak spanish—point number two where this episode lost me), then lets Ballard take her back to the Dollhouse where he pretends that he has been tracking her this whole time instead of training her. Topher prepares to wipe her, but Adelle stops him and wants Echo placed in solitary instead.
So in hour two, the much better of the two hours, we see Topher covering up just how in control Echo is by telling Adelle her headaches are all in her head. Topher is also developing his remote wipe device. He shows it off and impresses everyone, then reveals to Adelle that the device is actually a plan by the big bosses to create a massive device that can control anyone in the world. He shows Adelle the plans and she agrees that Rossum must never now—-that is unless her job is in jeopardy! She shows Rossum the plan in order to save her job and Topher tells her she is a cold hearted bitch and tells him that was the last time he talks to her like that—next stop is the attic if can’t drop the ‘tude! And as if all of this was just not enough fun in one day Alpha comes back! Alpha is out to kill all of Echo’s romantic missions because they all think they love her but Alpha knows he is the only one for her. Alpha is killing away but the Dollhouse gets one step ahead and manages to bring one of the missons in to their protective custody. (Great bit were Topher is telling him how Alpha broke out, back in, then back out of the dollhouse and the guy was just showing how that made him not feel safe). Alpha of course gets inside the Dollhouse and has managed to set up all of the dolls as kick-ass killers. So while everyone is fighting dolls Alpha gets the mission alone in the mind wipe room. Luckily Ballard busts in to save him—-but then Victor gets him from behind and drugs him!!! Alpha’s target this whole time has been Ballard because of him spending those three months alone with Echo! He asks Ballard if he is gay and Ballard tells him no so Alpha tells him the only other option is that he loves Echo—why else would he go three months without touching her. He runs Ballard through the chair and he ****appears**** to be dead (if you saw Epitath One you know what those astericks mean!). Echo busts in, fights Alpha, then lets him escape. At the end we see Ballard hooked to breathing machines and Echo by his side.
Second half way better than the first half, however, it would have made the show interesting if season one had started with Echo and Ballard free and then we built up the Dollhouse around that —- it may have made things easier for people to understand. But you know what they say about hindsight and all that!!