Welcome to Biting-Edge, a blog shared by authors and vampire experts, Mario Acevedo and Jeanne Stein. We’ll cover urban fantasy, vampires, pop culture, and all things Joss Whedon. Unlike other fantasy blogs, we don’t insist on body cavity searches (unless you ask politely). Snarkiness is most welcome...though we won't promise not to bite back!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Today is one of those days when I can’t seem to organize my thoughts. That ever happen to you? Anyway, while I usually have my Weds blog entry up and ready by 6 AM—here it is five hours later and I’m still floundering.

Now Mario just called me with a great piece of news—You can download Nymphos of Rocky Flats for FREE at this link—you heard right—it’s FREE. Kind of an advance promo for his newest book, Jailbait Zombie, due out in a few weeks. If you haven’t tried Felix Gomez yet, jump all over this. I know I kid Mario a lot, but he’s a damned good writer. You really owe it to yourself to take advantage of this limited time offer.

Okay, maybe now I can get going. This will be a stream of consciousness entry so let’s jump in.

Of course, foremost on my mind is Joss Whedon and Dollhouse. Which is perfect because this just came in on today’s Shelf Awareness:

Joss Whedon has won the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America's Bradbury Award for excellence in screenwriting. The creator of hit TV series like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly and Dollhouse, as well as the Web hit, Dr. Horrible's Sing-A-Long Blog, will be honored during the Nebula Awards Weekend, April 24-26, in Los Angeles, Calif.

"Like everyone who picks up a pen, I was a rabid Bradbury fan and as greatly influenced by him as any other writer I read," Whedon said. "To receive the award named for him is an honor I'd not dreamed of. In my defense, it didn't exist back then. What did exist were the very lovely, very twisted and very human stories that warped my impressionable mind, and that I have tried, in whatever medium they will let me, to measure up to."

It’s nice to see my hero honored in such a wonderful way.

Which of course, is a perfect segue to today’s theme—Dollhouse.

I have so many links and videos to share I don’t know where to begin—that may, in fact, be my quandary for today. I will start, though, with an interview Joss did on Fresh Air—on NPR. He was a guest on Feb. 12

Then there was this, a video from New York ComicCon.

Another interview with Joss by the New York Times

All leading up of course, to Friday, Feb 13th’s debut. Turns out not to have been bad luck at all. According to Entertainment Weekly:

More than a fair share of Joss Whedon fans tuned in Friday to see the premiere of Fox’s Dollhouse. The mythological drama starring Eliza Dushku attracted 4.7 million viewers — a pretty decent jump over the eyeball levels for The Sarah Connor Chronicles at 8 p.m. (which lured a mere 3.7 million), according to fast national ratings. In fact, Dollhouse helped Fox double its viewership levels among women versus Chronicles and helped the net finish in second place among adults 18-34 and in first place across key male demos for the night.

So what does this mean for Dollhouse’s long-term prospects? Although 4.7 million isn’t that great — Fox typically averages 5.5 million on Fridays — the Whedon drama has a better chance of making it over the long haul if it stays put on the night. In fact, network insiders have long cautioned that if the series were scheduled earlier in the week and ended up attracting these kind of (low) viewership levels, it would have been axed by its second or third airing. So relax, Whedonites — Dushku and Co. appear safe for now.

Chronicles will remain as Dollhouse’s lead-in until Fox runs out of episodes; later, the Terminator franchise will be replaced by Prison Break for its final six episodes.

So, who watched and what did you think?

I belong to a group that calls itself The Buffybuds. Early comments are:

Julie Herman

I'm not getting the mythology yet. Echo has something big from her
past that will come into play, and she was recruited for some misdeed?
but the rest of it is not entirely clear. Still willing to go with it
because it's Joss and he does such wonderful stuff.

Loved seeing Fred. Interesting facial scars. Is she a dollhouse member
who has been imprinted as a Doc? Also love seeing Helo from BG.

Clean your shoes...had to laugh.

I am inclined to like everything I've seen of Joss's so far, so am
more than willing to keep going with him on this. I didn't start
watching Buffy until Season two, mostly because I refused on the face
of it to watch anything with Buffy as the lead character. Angel was
fun, but not my favorite of his shows. Firefly was wonderful and
whoever pulled the plug on it ought to be taken out and tied to the
screen of a spaceship...

Maryelizabeth Hart:

We thought episode #1 was ... okay. It's my understanding from discussion
elsewhere that, like Firefly, this was not Joss's choice for a pilot, or was
otherwise tweaked by the network.

We will stay tuned, at least for a while, because it's made by a great team.
It's not just Joss, but also David Solomon, Tim Minear, Steven DeKnight,
Elizabeth and Sarah, etc..

FWIW, we liked but didn't love Buffy upon initial viewing; really liked
Angel; adored Firefly (space cowboys! such a good match for us!), so clearly
our first responses can vary, and we have a lot of faith in the creative

Laura Condit:

I agree with Maryelizabeth - we weren't blown away by the pilot, but
as it's Joss, we'll stick with it. I'm sure all will be explained in
the fullness of time...


I just watched it and will continue giving it a try. I actually liked
it more than I expected to because I have never particularly cared for
the concept. But the main story was well done and ED was much better
than I expected. I never liked Faith that much and in Tru Calling she
seemed to be kind of a Faith clone. But here she was really good.

And there were just enough mystery scenes to make the underlying story
seem interesting. It was also nice to see Amy Acker though I thought she
was a bit wasted if this were her only appearance but I checked and she
is supposed to be in at least 7 episodes so hopefully her character will

Samantha Sommersby:

Ditto for me. I really loved seeing Amy, I hope they develop her
character more.

Kathy Lynn Emerson:

What just about everyone else has said about Dollhouse---waiting to see. I
think what I found missing was that trademark Joss wit/comic relief. The
body count got pretty high without much to redeem it. And I seem to have
failed to recognize Amy A. Driving myself crazy now trying to think how I
could have missed her. Thanks to whoever identified the cop as the guy from
Battlestar Gallactica. Him, I did recognize, but I couldn't put my finger on
where I knew him from.

Carol Malcolm (my GA friend):

I did enjoy Dollhouse, how about you? It's no Buffy or Angel, but it isn't supposed to be. I didn't read many of the articles that are out everywhere, but I think the criticism of Eliza is unfair. She is much more than a one-trick pony. (I did find her character in the opening scene to be quite Faith-like, but they have been even a bit of a homage). Suspense was maintained throughout the premiere. I feel as though the show has a lot of potential, and I look forward to watching the rest of the episodes.


I liked it. I think it’s going to get better and better. The set is spectacular, in fact, I think I read somewhere it is one of the most expensive ever built for TV. Nice to see Amy Acker, though, if you didn’t know it was her, you might easily have missed her. She was always in the shadows and there’s a nasty scar on her face. I liked the way the show was introduced with Summer Glau and Eliza. Here’s a taste if you missed it:

They also interspersed the episodes of both Sara Connor and Dollhouse with the two actors doing their super chick routines.

A bunch of screencaps from the first episode if you want to check them out--

and a teaser for episode deux.

Okay—that’s it. Now the fun part—email a comment and you may be chosen as the winner of a Trade Paperback copy of Many Bloody Returns—The tie in to Dollhouse, you ask?

We dedicated the book to Joss Whedon with the following: This is dedicated to Joss Whedon, who may never read it, and his enthusiastic fans known as the Buffybuds, who will.

So—contest is open from now until midnight next Tuesday. That gives you time to watch the second episode and comment if you missed the first. PS Here's the hulu link so you can catch up with the first-- thank you Leia for reminding me.

PS—the trade edition of MBR was released Feb 3rd and made the NYT Bestseller list—that’s two for two.
Goodie! I just checked and I can watch last week's episode on hulu.com....bless them. I'll come into work really really early in the morning so I can watch and not interrupt anyone else's time on the server....
And there's always DVD....I can be patient, really I can. Especially for Joss.
I recognized Amy Acker immediately and am hopeful there will be more Joss troupe movement in upcoming episodes.
Luh-huv the 'taste' on youtube. El fuego your Fridays...priceless!
Vickie-- I forgot about the "El Fuego your Friday" thing -- it was great!~!

First of all, thank you for the Mario link. I have not read that one yet and I will devour it this weekend.

Secondly, Dollhouse ... the first episode did not blow me away ... but I know from previous reading that Fox pulled another firefly and told Joss that the pilot episode needed more action and he had to rewrite the whole episode after production had already started. We all know that Joss' strength is character development and you could see a the starts of that in this episode. I was speaking to Curtis at the bookstore and he had watched it, as did his son (a grad student locally). Curtis found that he was less than impressed, but Gabe (his son) and I both urged him to continue watching. Thankfully he seemed to think we know our stuff and he will continue to watch. Joss always works best with large story arcs and people are so "instant gratification" anymore that they are often not willing to wait. That is the one thing that worries me for people who are already not Whedonites.

Vickie - in a post, hulu has stated that they will have the Dollhouse episodes the next day after they air (read: Saturdays). I'm excited they have it b/c since hulu is the official site I'm pretty certain that the networks are using hulu to count viewing numbers of their shows as well. That way I at least feel like I'm contributing my viewing number even though I don't own a tv. (Well I have an old analog that is for my console gaming but that is it). As for Amy Acker i was PSYCHED to see her on dollhouse. I did not know she was going to be here and I adored her as Fred in Angel. With her face like that you *know* she has an interesting story. I'm betting that she was a former doll.
OK< so I wandered over to hulu and watched the first episode of Dollhouse.

I thought it started incredibly slowly and was too subtle and cerebral for TV. I didn't really understand why she decided to sign up for the Dollhouse -- maybe more info will be forthcoming though.

After the sequence with the kidnapping negotiations started it finally started to get interesting enough to watch again.

My overall rating is a MEH+
Leia-- thanks for mentioning HULU. here's the link for those interested:


Gina-- you'll give it another try though, right? right?


On Wed Feb 18 18:00 , Michelle Carlson sent:


I hope this is the right place. I'm commenting on Dollhouse to enter
to win a copy of Many Bloody Returns.

I liked Dollhouse. I think it's interesting, and I want to know more about Echo's handler, the guy who handles the programming of the
actives, and what Echo did to end up there. I liked the fact that
even though they are programming the actives even they don't know everything that will happen. Like Echo coming into contact with the
person who abducted the person who she has become.

I just started watching Firefly recently so I'm becoming more of a fan of Joss all the time.

I've really enjoyed all of your books and am looking forward to the
next one. And Many Bloody Returns looks like it has a bunch of my
favorite authors.

Hi Jeanne! You bet I watched Dollhouse. I even made the tot go to bed, at bedtime, on a Friday (LOL) so I could watch it. I liked it. I thought it was a neat and intreguing premise. I'm not sure how the premise, from what we know right now, could keep going for a ton of seasons, but I'm sure Joss has stuff up his sleave.

Maybe you should take a leaf from "Girls that Growl" and have Anna write a letter to Joss about how her life would make a great TV show, lol.
Well, dagnabbit! I could have sworn I posted this morning. I came into work extra early so I could watch The Dollhouse on hulu.com and not interrupt the flow online of my fellow workers. (I am just so nice sometimes).
I am a patient Whedonite and can wait to see how the story develops for all of the characters. I am very curious about Amy Acker's character in particular. I love all of the stories going on and waiting to see how they intertwine....who was the naked guy surrounded by all the dead folk at the end of the episode?

Leia: Thank you for the cranium's up that hulu will show each episode the day after. I may have to get up early on Saturday while Lady K is still snoozin', so I can watch in peace.
JEanne and vickie - not a problem! I think hulu is a brilliant site. If it weren't for them I would not get to see my other favorite show "Chuck" in high quality. I'm not above watching shows on Chinese websites and all that (when you don't have a tv you make do) but if I can go the official route I will take it. For those of you, btw, that haven't seen Firefly yet ... hulu has the complete series (14 episodes) AND they continue to host the complete Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog in both sections and as a complete video.
So, Jeanne, are you going to the Nebula Awards weekend? Most events are open to the public. Check it out:
The deadline for registrations is April 15, 2009.

I'll give it a try. But it's going to need to improve. The core idea is interesting, but it needs something.

Like Suzanne I don't quite know yet how they'd sustain it yet.

Now -- I have to confess -- I am a raving Firefly fan. I'm so-so with Buffy & Angel. But I thought Firefly was brilliant.

Another show I really liked was The Pretender, and Dollhouse made me think about that, since they were both set in evil, amoral secret organizations with geeky science nerds. But the BIG difference for me is that at the core of it, The Pretender is fully of messy humanity, and you really come to love the tortured Jared. (well, I did. I even loved Ms. Parker.)

I don't yet see where Dollhouse is going to be able to do that. I didn't really care about Echo, I didn't find a bit of humanity to latch onto. It's not going to work to watch her inhabit different personas by day and then go get reprogrammed and crawl into her resting crypt (vampire symbolism, anybody?). Everybody in the place except for the handler, IMHO, seemed cold and sterile.
Leia: I bought Firefly as soon as it came out on DVD and I can watch it on Hulu. I've been a fan of that site for a goodly while once DH introduced it to me. It's good for mid shifts, tune in to a show while everyone else is asleep. I like catching up on Jon Stewart, too.

Gina: I think Echo is gettin' ready to snap, what with the flashbacks and all. It's early days, so let it ride and enjoy, say I.

I hope so. It had a very Gen-Y feel to it to me. Which is a complicated thing to explain but it's not a positive association for me. I'm a Gen-X'r who finds the younger generation a little difficult to deal with in certain ways.

There was no lightheartedness or wonder to it, and that makes me sad.

I'm going to go crawl in my hobbit hole now.
lesleysmith asked about the Nebula weekend--Unfortunately, that's the same weekend as RT so I can't. If you're going, how about giving us a report? Offer goes out to everyone out there--if you attend any interesting cons, let us know. Pics are especially encouraged!

Ah! You guys! I just finished watching Doll House ep 2 and it is SO incredibly good. I don't want to say too much b/c I don't want to ruin it for anyone, but I'll say this. I felt no connection to anyone last episode. This episode I already have people I lvoe, people I hate, and people whose intentions I misjudged last episode. The Whedon is already beginning to shine. If you have not seen it yet, what are you waiting for? Go to hulu right now and watch it. The link fro Ep. 2 is http://www.hulu.com/watch/58593/dollhouse-the-target . Go! Now! Seriously!
I was never a huge Joss Whedon fan until I met my best friend in college and she had what was just a minor obsession...ok more than minor...but now I am right there with her and we LOVE Dollhouse. She also met Joss a few weeks ago at an event in NYC and I am incredibly jealous. thanks for the giveaway
Leia: I stayed up, Lady K went without her bath and I got to watch episode 2, too. It was sooo good! It even brought DH up from the mancave where he was watching College Combine highlights. He luh-huvs Eliza.....
Excellent action and giving us some backstory.
I am ready to meet Alpha....I think....
And just in case...VWinship at aol dot com
Yay! everyone enjoyed it! This just made my evening :-p

Oh wait, there is a give-away? (scrolls up to re-read article) Huh, well fancy that there is! I have no clue where I was when I read that though, I did manage to notice that Jeanne added the hulu link.

You guys are WAY ahead of me-- haven't watched ep 2 yet but from your comments, I'm excited about it!

Yes, Leia-- there is a giveaway and you're in the running. As is everyone who has posted.

I've got some more Whedon stuff for Wednesday but if you want a sneak peak, drop over to :


I'll be posting there on Saturday's so there'll be some cross-over between the two blogs. I'm not clever enough to be totally original TWICE a week.

I'm another one who is waiting to see where Dollhouse goes. So far it's OK, but I'm not sure. I'm a bit disturbed because of all the things happening to Echo's body without her really *knowing* about it. No real control over herself. It creeps me out the more I focus on it. So I'm waiting and seeing.
I haven't seen the series but I'm going to have to check out Hulu for the episodes!
Thanks so much for the link to the Summer/Eliza kicking butt. That was really the only reason I wanted to watch that Friday night live--but I'm still catching up on SCC, so hulu it is for the next little while. :)
Janicu said: I'm a bit disturbed because of all the things happening to Echo's body without her really *knowing* about it. No real control over herself

It's going to be interesting to see how they work this out. I read someone's comment about the sex seeming too much like rape in the second episode since Echo is programmed to go along with whatever situation someone's paid to put her in. I think what we're seeing, though, is that Echo can respond to stimulus on her own.I think I understand that the guy who ended up hunting her hadn't said anything about THAT when he filled out his request form. I also wasn't sure if she killed him. I'm going to watch the ep again.

alanajoli said...Thanks so much for the link to the Summer/Eliza kicking butt. That was really the only reason I wanted to watch that Friday night live.

It's so much fun to see those two programs back to back-- I think it's going to work for Fox.

Dollhouse has really hooked me. I really like how they're already starting in with Alpha and the mystery surrounding him. It makes one wonder how many imprints he has, and how he got so much working knowledge on how to fake a background check so elaborately.
Jeanne, I just popped over to the Leave of Reluctant Adults and I'm SO glad you sent us there. I had no clue that Nathan was going to be in a new show (they had better show that on Hulu too or I'll have to wait until it appears on chinese websites ... I really do like to go legit if possible.) But Ahhhh! Tolkien!!! I'm now beyond psyched about the book "new" story that is going to be coming out. You have completely made my day ... you just have no idea.

Ok also I love the pictures that have been going up there of various people's workspaces. I think it would be cool to see something like that here atleast once since so many of the readers of Biting Edge seem to be writers or artists of some sort in their own right. I always find people's working places so frascinating. On etsy.com they feature an etsy artist weekly, and one of the questions they ask of said artist is how their studio space is laid out and what thier working methods are. I read the interviews just for that!
Also has anyone looked at the NASA poll numbers yet? "Serenity" has 82% of the vote.
*League of Reluctant Adults

NOT Leave of Reluctant Adults. Freudian slip?
Hi Leia-- I just started with the League and of course for me, the problem lies with deciding wha to put in each blog. So I'll be doing some cross-posting for sure. I'm having great fun with the Writers' rooms and after I finish with League members, I'm hoping to get some others to contribute as well.

I did check the NASA numbers-- isn't that a hoot?

This comment has been removed by the author.
i adore you jeane, and not even got to the post office to pick my package up :)))
Blackroze, you are too kind!~ I hope you enjoy the goodies.

Many Blood Returns looks like an awesome read! The combination of authors is epic-ness raised to infinity (mind the nerdiness). It's already been added to my growing wishlist. I can't wait to get my own copy!

However, I am ashamed to say, I have not seen Dollhouse YET. =[
No time + No TV = College life. =/
I will watch when I get a break though! I promise!
Natalie, you are excused until aforementioned break--

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