Saturday, December 26, 2009

Looking Back At 2009

The decade is about to end.
I remember where I was when it was about to begin...literally staying up all night at KUBA in Yuba City, ringing in the New Year with slightly stale coffee, wondering if all the computers in the world would blow up once the new millennium would arrive.
They didn't. In fact, the computers of 2000 wouldn't be as smart as an iPod Nano today.

When I look back, it was a decent decade because I finally got to a major radio market, and will be sticking around for years to come unless the Super Lotto Plus fairy blesses me...and I'd still stay. I'd just have a retirement date in mind.
If nothing else, this decade brought me closer to the massive Whedon Family of Fans. I met some of the Scooby Gang members, and the original Buffy. I'm still waiting for Eliza, though, and meeting SMG would be great..if it's meant to be. She's the reason I'm hooked on Comic-Con. The other reason being I can go for free as part of the press.
Of course, the highlight was 2005 when I met the Firefly crew, Sunnydale High's Principal and Spike himself..and even saw the premiere of Serenity.

Anyway, here is my top ten moments for 2009:

10. Getting George Lucas and Arnold Schwartzenegger's autographs and photos at CA Museum.

That's part of the Hall of Fame Induction just after Thanksgiving. I had hoped to get Carol Burnett and John Madden as well but they zipped right by. It was the Night the '70s Returned..or at least the '70s I remember

9. The Mentalist Comes To Town

The popular CBS drama decided it was time to have some scenes in Sacramento, since that's where the show is set. Thus, I got some nice photos of Simon Baker, along with a hundred other people taking long lunches to see this piece of Hollywood

8. Nick Brendon in Santaland Diaries

Sometimes, there's a better way than visiting WonderCon or some such thing to see actors you remember from Buffy or Battlestar Galactica. In this case, it was seeing Nick Brendon act as a guy who shows us how making holiday cheer is much tougher than it looks. Throw in seeing "Please Hammer, Don't Hurt 'Em" Improv with three members of the Guild, and you know the best live theater isn't necessarily at the Pantages.

7. Paley Festival

I brought a "doll" to the Dollhouse panel, pretending it was Laurence Dominic, but the big blast was seeing the last three episodes of Pushing Daisies at a time where it would be the only place where they'd be shown. It seemed a bit more magical, seeing that show at the Arclight Dome. The event has moved to Beverly Hills now, but at least I have a picture of me next to Vivian Charles.

6. Crowded Comic-Con

While I missed the Dollhouse crew, and two other panels because of long lines, and my laptop died just as I got to my hotel room, I shouldn't even call this a highlight because this was a less-than-perfect event. However, two events did save it for me: being among the first 250 people in the U-S, including Dominic Monaghan, to see Inglorious Basterds, and being part of the press for Whedonopolis. Seeing a Time Lord for the first time in 20 years was a treat, too. No matter how busy Matt Smith, aka Doctor XI, may be, BBC America has got to try to get him to San Diego next summer. They got John Barrowman there, and he better be welcome to L-A come Emmy time, too.

5. WonderCon

While I was not allowed to see a midnight showing of Watchmen because I was dumb enough to admit I was part of the press, it did work out. I got to meet Summer Glau and Shirley Manson up close, and Adam Baldwin, too. I'm worried the 2010 version in April may be flooded with Twilight fans again, but maybe they'll have a sneak preview of Kick-Ass, with Hit Girl dealing with those Team Jacob and Team Edward nerds. On the other hand, it's also close to Iron Man 2, and the new Nightmare on Elm Street.

4. Being part of the Dollhouse Farewell Book

I'd like to thank, because I won a contest where one of my phrases would be made into a mug given to Emmy guests. That gave me a gift certificate that will last me a good year. Before that, I made three Dollhouse shirts, including one that said "We are gone but we are not lost. Save Dollhouse." Too bad that shirt became obsolete a week after I got it, but I wore it at the Serenity Salute, and someone decided that would be a nice picture for the gift to the cast. I'm sure if Fran, Dichen, Enver or even Eliza saw me on the street, they'd never recognize me...since I'd never be on the same street they were. Still, I am glad I was part of something special.

3. Amber Benson in Roseville

She was at Borders for a book signing of Death's Daughter. She had been in Sacramento once before. The crowd wasn't big, but they were happy to see her. It was one of my first celebrity interviews for Whedonopolis

2. Original Buffy at Cal Expo

The closest I've been to Sarah Michelle Gellar was 100 feet away when she was at Comic-Con 2004. I never would have thought I'd be right next to Kristy Swanson, the original Buffy at something called Witchapalooza. Aside from her and Malcolm McDowell, it was just like a farmers' market for Halloween. I made the most of it, and more. I had the feelng ths may have been in the cards. Just a couple of weeks before, I found a copy of the movie's press packet that was made up like the Hemery High School yearbook. Also, two months before, the original movie was part of the annual Horror Film Festival held every summer at the Crest.

1. Seeing My Family in Santa Cruz

Since we're scattered all over the West Coast, it's very tough to get together for holidays and such. Using Facebook helps, but it's not the same. Thankfully, we all met for the Memorial Day Weekend, took pictures, exchanged e-mail addresses, and promised to keep in touch.
Seeing my mom again for the firs ttime in years made it all worth it. That, and the fact that getting from Sacramento to Santa Cruz through the rail and a shuttle is much easier than I remember. I also found out only two parts of my memories of Santa Cruz still stand: the Del Mar theater and the Boardwalk.

For 2010, I'm already set for Cinematic Titanic returning to San Francisco, and WonderCon and Comic-Con. I am also hoping for a trip to Anaheim, maybe going to the Emmys one last time (even if it is in late August), and seeing tapings of Ellen and maybe Bonnie Hunt in May. However, I need reasons aside from the shows themselves to go. I may get an extra one or two depending on who will be at the Paley Festival in March aside from Glee and the Vampire Diaries. If they decide on a panel on web content, including web comedies about gamers, that's a good reason!
One thing I will miss is hoping to see a movie premiere in Westwood. Since the Bruin and Westwood Village are about to close, I'll have to find another way to find and snap pictures of famous guys.

Monday, December 21, 2009

The Education of Adelle DeWitt

Eliza Dushku may be the star of Dollhouse, the story of a woman who was turned into a Doll to fulfill the needs and fantasies of the rich and power.
It may be the story of how Echo, the Doll, slowly started to become self-aware and grow a new self inside her, much to the disapproval of Rossum, the evil Doll makers.
However, you could argue that it's also the story of another person, who thought she was a loyal employee, on the fast track to success, convinced that what her company is doing is right and proper....mostly.
Then, one day, she became self-aware, and decided to be her own woman, even if Rossum disapproved about that, too.
Of course, that person is Adelle DeWitt, wonderfully played by the woman who should be a female version of Rupert Giles like, yesterday...Olivia Williams. This was especially true this past Friday in "Stop-Loss" and "The Attic", where she really had to take a hard look at Rossum when she realizes it doesn't want to stop at ful filling the needs of the rich. Actually, it has an urge of its own that must be fulfilled with a domination. She had to ask how she could deny Rossum that urge, and avoid being dead or being stuck in the company's version of Hell, "the Attic."

Adelle started in a division that made replacement organs out of stem cells, and that eventually led to her running the Los Angeles Dollhouse. Somewhere on that road, she did someone especially bad, according to evil bigwig Matthew Harding, but she still wound up being a boss. When we first met her, she was seen as the one who ran the Dollhouse, and the best saleswoman for it. Add a friendly spot of tea, and the client is hooked. She was also busy trying to keep the Dollhouse hidden from a certain FBI agent, and using favors from the rich and powerful to do it. Of course, there was the problem of Alpha, an Active that went insane and escaped.
Eventually, she saw herself as a very important person at Rossum, maybe to the point that she could abuse that power. That's why she invented "Miss Lonelyhearts", and enjoyed an illicit affair with "Roger" who was actually Victor, an Active. She didn't see it as forcing herself on him. She just programmed him to love her, because it's a lot easier than the singles scene.
Some may find that ironic, since she had one of the handlers who raped Sierra killed through Mellie, a "sleeper" Active. However, Adelle wasn't aware of what another major player at Rossum was doing to Sierra...with the company's blessing. Once she was told what Nolan Kinnard was doing to Sierra, and was determined to literally own her, she thought she had no choice. Topher's decision to turn Sierra back into Priya, which led to her killing him in self-defense, would lead to Adelle deciding to turn the other way, as Rossum looked the other way to what Nolan was doing. However, she would not forget.

Then Echo was grabbed by the D.C. Dollhouse after she discovered Senator Daniel Perrin is a Doll. She escapes, which looks bad for DeWitt. It's not long before Harding takes over the Dollhouse, and Adelle is demoted to being his lackey. That sticks in her craw, but not enough to do anything drastic. That happens when Topher reveals his most dangerous invention: a portable ray that can turn anyone into a Doll. She hands it to Harding, and she has her job back. She sees it as a way to protect the Dollhouse, but it was mostly ambition. She thought she had to act like one of the boys to win the company's favor again.

However, that takes a toll on her. "Stop-Loss" shows her drinking a lot of whiskey, while trying to show she is in control. However, she tried to have one last sexual encounter with "Roger", or should we say Victor, before he is released from service. However, he rejects her because he has found someone else, namely Sierra. She is as upset as any client who wanted a Doll as a lover. Eventually, Adelle takes a shower with the Actives. This is a big scene because we wonder whether this shower has provided a point of clarity, or is it just a respite before she resumes being Matthew Harding's Doll, there to serve his wishes and urges.

A few minutes later, it looks like Adelle is still Harding's Doll, when she sends Echo to the Attic. While the staff, and Paul Ballard, are shocked over her decision, she justifies it in many ways. First, she reminds Boyd that once he joined Rossum, he had to obey their orders, or find himself in the Attic or in a grave. She also says "I have seen the future, Mr. Langston, and it is not for the weak." He may argue that is this is true, she wouldn't last, either.

By the end of the episode, we see that Adelle is right: Rossum's future is not for the weak, and she has stopped being weak. Sending Echo to the Attic was really a chance to dig into Rossum's darkest secrets. Once Echo got them, Adelle got an advantage to protect herself, the Actives and the Dollhouse. As someone once said, she aims to misbehave...again, but it is for the right reasons, not for an urge.

So what happens next? Will Team Echo win? Maybe not, or the world of "Epitaph One" would not exist. She will keep fighting for something more important than a corporation whose attitude towards humanity isn't, well, human.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Recap of Dollhouse "The Attic", or Echo the Dream Warrior

Echo has been a bad doll. She has been a big problem to Rossum, doll makers for the rich and powerful. It decided that Echo must stay in the Attic, and be kept in a permanent nightmare. She'll find out there are others, not all of them Dolls, who have suffered the same fate.
Is this the end of her story...or the beginning?

The episode starts where "Stop-Loss" left off, with Echo being laid out on a table, hooked up to a monitor, while a female voice says "Welcome to the Attic. We're so glad to have you." When her body disengages, she's able to wake up, put down a couple of guards, and escape. She finds Sierra and Victor, and they are about to escape when Echo is tapped when a clear door closes behind her. She sees Sierra and Victor shot and killed in front of her....
and then the nightmare begins again.
Welcome to the Attic, Echo. It's so happy to have you.

Elsewhere in the Dollhouse, Adelle wants Topher to fix Paul's brain, even if it means turning him into an Active. Maybe he can be the new Victor. Boyd is still at the Dollhouse, but reveals he's been at home, dealing with something personal. Some suspect he's keeping Claire Saunders there, but that's not certain.
Boyd then asks him about the Attic. All Topher knows is that it's where Rossum does experimentation, maybe torture. Anyone in the Attic is kept in a fear-inducing nightmare, as a problem they can't solve.
In Echo's case, it's trying to escape when she can't. However, once she realizes it's all a dream, she escapes to another room...where she's under a large snow-covered tree. She also sees Terry's hateful relatives from "Belle Chose" and even the young Margaret Bashford from "Haunted". Echo guesses this isn't real. However, someone in black is real, and is trying to kill her.

Back at the Dollhouse, Topher compares Paul's brain to a football team without a quarterback. Ivy says it's not as if his brain could do the "wildcat formation", where the center snaps the ball to a running back, not a quarterback. Topher, however, suspects it could. So, Paul's brain will become the Miami Dolphins, which likes the wildcat offense. Suddenly, Ivy's called to Adelle's office. He's worried, but tells Ivy Darth Vader kills lieutenants, not stormtroopers.

In Attic Land, Echo finds out someone is following her....none other than Laurence Dominic, the former head of security. He says he is following someone named Arcane, who tried to kill him and is killing others. He thinks he's still in his head, but Echo tells him he's in hers.
As they wander around, she suddenly finds her way to a Japanese restaurant. She meets someone named Matsu, who says he has to stay and enjoy himself. He, of course, is also in the Attic. He says Rossum hired him to find a weakness in the company mainframe. Once he did, he was sent to the Attic to keep his findings secret. As for Victor and Sierra, we learn that sometimes they make love, then find out where they really are. Sierra is locked in a padded cell with undead Rossum bigwig Nolan Kinnard raping her, while Victor is in Afghanistan literally fighting himself. That is, Anthony the solider is attacking Victor the civilian.
How can Enver Gjokaj do both roles well? He gets his twin brother Demir to help out. Enver and Nick Brendon would have a lot in common.

When Ivy gets back from Adelle's office, she is cold to Topher, almost afraid. Adelle got to her, and "advises" Topher not to be disloyal. She also says she knows how he got rid of Nolan Kinnard, the Rossum bigwig who wanted to own Sierra. If Adelle is being sympathetic towards Nolan, to show her loyalty to Rossum, then something is wrong. Actually, she defines it for Boyd: when you work for Rossum, it owns you body and soul. You be a good employee, or it's off to the Attic or the grave. Specifically, "I have seen the future, Mr. Langton, and it is not for the weak."
If that is true, Adelle, you won't last, either.

Back at the Attic Sushi Bar, Echo hears Arcane kill someone. She tries to get Matsu to leave, but he can't. His legs have been cut off, and he's been forced to eat the meat from them. It's not long before Arcane kills Matsu as well, and his world also "dies". He's about to kill Victor before Echo and Dominic get there first. Later, they're able to save Sierra, but soon find themselves in the apocalyptic world that was part of "Epitaph One". We also see Arcane has turned into.....Clyde?

Now Boyd and Topher are passing a flask, discussing how to rewire Paul's brain to bring him back to the land of the living. He'll lose some part of him, but don't say what. Whatever it is, Boyd says anger is all he'll have left. "That woman is going to drag us straight to hell," Topher says. Is that Echo or Adelle?
They do revive Paul, and he's not happy when he's told he had to be turned into a Doll. He winds up pulling a gun at Adelle, while she has a gun aimed at Paul's face. What happens next? We don't know.

Now, who is Clyde, and why are everyone in Los Angeles 2019? Clyde Randolph was a co-founder of Rossum, and helped develop the theory of imprinting people. He says he's also trying to destroy Rossum's mainframe, except it's made of human brains. The Attics of all the Dollhouses are computer rooms. He's been in one of the Attics since he was betrayed by his partner, with help from the first imprinted person, Clyde 2.0, way back in 1993. Since then, he's been forced to determine what the technology would create, In 97 percent of all cases, we'd have the end of the world.
He asks what year it is now, and Echo says 2010, maybe, because "we don't know how long we've been off the air" (hey, too close to the 4th wall, kiddo). Clyde thinks that's good news until he learns about Daniel Perrin.
Then he remembers that a woman accidentally got inside Rossum, and discovered the person who betrayed Clyde.
Yep, it's Caroline Farrell, now known as Echo. She doesn't have Caroline's memories, but can find them.
So, what can be done? Echo makes the sacrifice, allowing herself to be shot so she can cause her monitor to flat-line. Then, she can "rise from the dead" in a Matrix-type of way, escape from her room, and revive the others. Sierra and Victor are willing to sacrifice their dream selves, while Clyde and Dominic stay behind to tell the others to not be afraid.

Eventually, we see Echo tell someone that she has the information that can destroy Rossum's mainframe and its plans for the future. She has escaped the Attic, and is now ready for the final battle against Rossum.
So, what will Adelle DeWitt do to stop Echo?
Nothing. Adelle can't stop Echo...because all this was ADELLE'S IDEA!!!!

Yes, Miss DeWitt pulled off the biggest scam this side of Angel pretending to join the Order of the Black Thorn to uncover pure evil. The shower did clear her head. It reminded her she's a woman, not Matthew Harding's Doll...and she's not weak, either.
Let's go back to where Adelle is about to send Echo to the Attic, describing how it could be the worst type of Hell. She also thinks Rossum's deepest secrets could be located there, especially the "human brain mainframe" part. Adelle actually gambled that Echo, with 40 brains, can make her way through the Attic and get out with the information. Clearly, it worked, because Victor, Sierra, Topher, Ivy, Boyd and Paul are in Adelle's office, too.
They're ready, but they need one more person.
Caroline Farrell.

Dollhouse December has included more plot twists than a year of daytime soap operas, along with betrayals, triumphs and surprises. It's almost a shame to see it go.
Now, Dollhouse fans will be unwrapping their Christmas gifts and ringing in the New Year. On January 8th, the road to the end will start.
The big question is: will Team Echo battle Rossum and lose? It has to, so that the world of Epitaph One can exist. Does that mean final victory will be delayed until 2019? Who will be left, and can the survivors clean up the mess Rossum made?
Not only that, did Caroline really betray Bennett Halverson, costing her an arm? Will Alpha show up again, and where? There's lots left to consider while we wait for eight tiny reindeer.

As for the ratings, both episodes generated an 0.7 rating, or about 2.1 million viewers. Overall, people decided not to stay home on December 18th because they wanted to check out Avatar. For the cost of five minutes of that movie, they could have seen two compelling hours of TV drama, where the dialogue was in

Recap of Dollhouse "Stop-Loss", or Life After Wartime

This week, Sierra and Victor are separated, but not the way you think. We find out it's not easy to leave your Active years behind, and Adelle falls apart, only to recover and make a shocking decision.

What happens when your tour of duty is over? How can you get back to your old life?
It's a problem Anthony Ceccoli has to face twice: once as a veteran of the Afghan War, and again as an Active named Victor.
It's also something Adelle DeWitt has to face, since he was her imaginary lover when she was Miss Lonelyhearts. As the episode begins, we see her hoping to have one last sexual session with Victor, as Roger. However, he winds up dumping her, saying there's someone else. She is upset, revealing that he's really a Doll who's about to leave the Dollhouse. Of course, he doesn't believe it.
She immediately thinks Topher rewired Victor somehow, but he denies it. He is surprised when Adelle admits she was Miss Lonelyhearts. Ivy, his assistant, makes an awkward comment on the matter. Adelle tells Topher to make sure Actives don't reject the people who had them programmed to love them.

As for Paul, he's still brain dead after what Alpha did to him last week. Echo is upset because she's been able to keep his memories while she's losing her friends. She is also sad Victor is leaving, because she was hoping he'd help her. At least, she makes sure he says goodbye to Sierra, without knowing what it really means.

What it means is that Victor is back to being Anthony, a veteran recovering from PTSD, but struggling to get back to civilian life. For now, he'll be a lonely guy at a suite in the Hyperion, newly-renovated after Angel left. However, there is someone who thinks Anthony could be useful.

Echo reluctantly tells Sierra that Victor has left, but Sierra fells bad about Victor because he's not ready to be alone. His first night alone, which winds up with him sleeping in a bathtub that is shaped like his old bed, proves her right.

This episode also traces the development of Adelle DeWitt, brilliantly played by Olivia Williams. Here, she aims to be Rossum's Employee of the Year if it means keeping her job. However, it also means sipping whiskey more often. When Echo confronts Adelle abut Paul, Echo says she has the advantage because "I have a serial killer in my head", while all Adelle has is her job. Adelle also thinks her knowledge of the rebellion forming against her is also giving her an edge. Echo, however, tells Adelle to pick a side, either Rossum or her Actives.

Meanwhile, a special ops team breaks into VicTony's (Victor/Anthony) suite and kidnap him. We find out they're part of a military group called Scytheon, owned by Rossum. They ask VicTony if he wants to join them. He agrees, but there's more than that. He has to wear a gizmo that links his mind to the rest of the Scytheon army. He's now part of the RossumBorg, where the mission is all, and individuality is removed.

Echo comes up with a plan to get Victor back, but it includes turning Sierra back into Priya. Topher and Boyd just hope Adelle can stay in her alcoholic haze long enough for them to finish the job. They also learn that Echo can maintain her self, even as several people and abilities are imprinted into her. Some fans suggested it's improving on The Matrix.

Echo and Priya/Sierra get "caught" in the Scytheon base, but it's only to get close to VicTony. It's not easy, but Priya/Sierra is able to get through to him. However, what he sees the rest of the Scytheon army sees. It also works the other way, and that's how he's able to anticipate their moves.

Adelle wakes up after too much whiskey, thanks to a call from Harding over what Echo is doing. She confronts Boyd. She's mad, but so is he. He wonders what happened to the Adelle who would put the welfare of the Actives and Dollhouse first. She says that Adelle is still there, but he doesn't believe it. She eventually takes a shower with the other Actives, but does the water clear her head, or is she still clouded by ambition and the need to be protected from Rossum?

Echo is able to stop the Scytheon army by injecting a neural radio into herself, and convincing the rest of the Borg, I mean soldiers, to stand down. She, VicTony and Priya/Sierra escape, and make plans for their lives away from the Dollhouse. However, Topher's disruptor ray disables them all.

We see Adelle looking at Echo, who is tied down as Laurence Dominic was tied down when his true mission was revealed. "You leave a wake of destruction wherever you go," Adelle tells Echo, and such a Doll can't be trusted. It's time to go to the Attic.
She won't be lonely. Victor and Sierra will join her...maybe followed by Boyd, Topher, Ivy, Paul.........Dr. Saunders?

It looks like Rossum has won, because Adelle DeWitt chose her job and her company over humanity. It's all for self-preservation. Knowing she has Rossum on her side makes her mighty, while her enemies, which now include Boyd, Topher and Ivy, are in big trouble if they can't stop her. Even if they could, how can they stop the company?

Sunday, December 13, 2009

From Slayer Slidekick to Hollywood's Top Christmas Elf: Nick Brendon in Santaland Diaires

(above picture from

One man's memories of being a Christmas elf at Macy's in New York has turned into a live theater staple that rivals "A Christmas Carol". It's called "The Santaland Diaries", and it's being perormed by regional companies all around the country.
However, to the averge Buffy fan, there's only one version this year: the Blank Theater in Hollywood, where Nicholas Brendon is bringing Christmas cheer as Crumpet.

This version has attracted a lot of attention in Southern California when it was first announced last month. The play is based on an essay by writer and humourist David Sedaris. He talks about how he got the job as a Christmas elf at Macy's,and gives his observations about the costume, the kids, the parents and all the stress of Christmas in general. Brendon, who plays Xander on Buffy, was an inspired choice to play Crumpet. The play was certain to attract fans of both Buffy and Sedaris.
In fact, tickets sold so quickly, extra performances were added. Soon, it became the hottest tcket in town.

Santaland Diaries Poster

Thanks to an air fare sale by Southwest that made going to Los Angeles slightly more expensive that taking a bus to San Francisco, I decided to check out the play. When I came on December 10th, I noticed the stage was very small. There was room for 50 chairs, including a few on stage. This is as intimate as live theater gets.
The stage has very large Christmas presents arranged as if it could be part of "Santaland". What I noticed is that there were three garish fake trees on a shelf at the top of the stage, and some stockings hung on a wall....behind some chicken wire.

Brendon starts the play standing on the stage, explaining how his character, a 31 year old man, wound up applying for a job as an elf at Macy's. We learn the inside story about elf training, employee manuals, the different styles of being jolly, the different types of Santas, and the occasional mishaps and tantrums (and that's just from the parents).
He makes full use of the stage, and even interacts with a couple of the guests. The highlight is when we see Brendon put on the Crumpet costume for the first time. It is quite a hoot.

This play could have been done as a bigger venue, like maybe the Steve Allen Theater, and it could have sold more tickets. Still, using the Blank Theater's 2nd Stage, where only 50 people can be seated at a time, really makes the play work. It's as if we're sitting in a strange version of "Santaland". Instead of waiting for Santa, we're waiting to see Crumpet, who reveals what really happens "behind closed doors", the inside story the kids or their parents never learn about.

Aside from this, Brendon also appeared in a new Chistmas movie called "One Golden Christmas." It was on ION TV this past Sunday, and will be shown again before Christmas. He plays a single dad who's about to buy a home from a family whose daughter also wants to buy the house. What they don't know, but the viewer may figure out after 20 minutes, is that they spent a summer together in the woods when both were nine. They called themselves Han and Leia for some reason, which is why a stray dog pulls out all the stops to reunite them. The only thing I didn't like is how the female lead, Andrea Roth from "Rescue Me", was so selfish at first. We later find out she's still hurting from losing her husband, and feeling guilty she hasn't kept touch with her family. Of course, there is the happy ending that's typical of holiday movies usually seen on Lifetime or the Hallmark Channel. It was great to see Nick again, and it's something we should see more often.

But seeing him up close as an elf was also unforgettable. In fact, I'm sending him a Christmas card, care of the Blank Theater, of course. It's the least I can do.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Recap of Dollhouse "A Love Supreme", or Alpha Wants His Beta

While Adelle DeWitt was occupied with finding Echo and Paul Ballard, there's one Active she may have forgotten. He caused a little trouble, like killing several Actives and severely injuring another, all to get the love of a certain girl...named Echo.
Now, Alpha is back, and he'll win Echo's love by eliminating the competition.

He'll start in Riverside County, where a guy named Clay who lives in a run-down trailer. He talks about how he's blown his money on the Dollhouse. While he may be in love with a girl who doesn't exist, that love sustains him. Alpha, looking very fashionable in a three-piece suit, agrees with Clay, and points out the saddest part about love is the ending...right before he cuts Clay's neck with a hunting knife.

At the Dollhouse, Echo is in a straightjacket, interviewed by a shrink who looks a lot like Victor...because it is. It's part of Adelle's efforts to get Echo to say what she did during her three-month walkabout. Adelle claims she's sorry she has to do this, but I suspect she also resents Echo for running away. It was the reason Adelle lost control of the Dollhouse. It's also a way to get Paul Ballard to admit he was helping Echo. It's starting to work until Boyd tells him to "man up".
As Adelle asks Dr. Victor his opinion on whether Echo is really in pain, he winds up analyzing Adelle, especially about how reserved she is. He even accuses Adelle of being jealous of Echo because she's both the "virgin and whore" and is being celebrated for both. Of course, he gets treated after this. Topher also pretends to side with Victor's opinion that Echo's pain is all in her mind.

Later, we see Topher knows how active her Doll state has become. He's told by Paul and Boyd about how she's 37 people in one, and is just about self-aware. So, what is Echo, he asks? Is she Eleanor Penn, Taffy, Bree, Rebecca, Terry the serial killer (even a little bit)? Yes, and more. Soon, she'll become Susan, for a romantic engagement with a guy named Frank Pierce. She does that even without an imprint. Topher can only think this is what old people feel like...or Blockbuster. Well, more like Tower Records, Topher.
On their way, Paul tells Echo he was hoping that when she came back on the field, they'd run. Echo disagrees, because they'd probably be Attic-bound. They get to Pierce's house, and she notices a trail of rose petals. It leads to Pierce's dead body. They also find some flowers, with a card that says "You're My Number One." Alpha the romantic.

They also figure out Alpha's been killing Echo's past romantic engagements that have given her love, including a woman that married her.
Later, Sierra comes back as a film noir doll, maybe Elizabeth Scott or Barbara Stanwyck, complaining about a guy who did her wrong. She hopes she never hears that guy's name again...Alpha. She also has a message, "the next one ages well." They also figure the next victim is a guy named Cargill, who reserves Echo on his birthday.
While all the Actives are re-wiped, Paul and Boyd find Alpha, with Cargill wearing a vest loaded with TNT. Alpha is disappointed his fashion sense is better than anyone else there. He says the men Echo had only loved pieces of her, while he alone can love all of her, and those inside her. He winds up blowing Cargill to smithereens and leaving the scene.

Who's left? None other than Joel Mynor, who we last saw in "Man on the Street." He was the internet genius who wanted Echo as his dead wife to recreate a moment that never came. He's leery about hiding out at the Dollhouse, especially since Alpha once broke in. After he sees Echo as Rebecca, he might as well try. He also talks shop with Topher, saying that once a program is deleted, it becomes alive somewhere. Maybe the same with personas?
Adelle prefers that Mynor be sent somewhere else. However, Alpha is already inside her office. She claims she's scared out of her mind, but he doesn't have that problem. He can just go to the next mind. She's willing to give him Echo not because she is chivalrous, but because of self-preservation (which the previous episode has proved). Echo's locked up, and she can be sent to him. Instead, he shows Adelle his "vacation photos", including a lot with Echo and Paul. He drags her to the executive elevator, where they get to the lobby. However, it's not because she's his human shield. It's to allow him to use his own remote wipe gizmo, which causes the Actives to turn against their handlers. Adelle gets away, and runs into her panic room.
Echo is able to get out by breaking a two-way window. Paul finds Alpha with Mynor, but it's bait and switch. Victor drugs Paul, while Alpha has plans for him. He wants to know why Echo loves Paul, and will drill right into his brain to find out. Paul keeps saying he doesn't love Echo even if she might love him. Alpha is certain Paul loves her because he didn't have sex with her. So. he zaps Paul's brain to get the answer.

Echo finds Adelle, and they later figure out Alpha used a computer virus to take control of the Actives, but it didn't work on Echo. Topher also figures he can use his Remote Wipe Ray to subdue the Actives.

Alpha, meanwhile, hasn't found the answer in Paul's brain...because it's been fried. So, he decides to imprint Paul into himself. Echo is shocked and angry at Alpha for making Paul brain-dead. While she clobbers Alpha, and says that Paul is ten times Alpha is (and he's 40 guys), he keeps telling her that to love him is to love herself. Then he speaks in Paul's voice, and the "Paul" inside Alpha begs Echo to kill him. She just can't, and Alpha leaves. It's almost a callback to when Buffy was torn over fighting Angel because she had to kill the man she loved...when he had a soul. Here, Echo can't kill Alpha because it also means killing Paul.

Mynor soon leaves, but not before Echo shifts into her Rebecca persona to give him a chance to say goodbye. He admits to "Rebecca" she lives on in him. Echo then turns to Paul's brain-dead body, and says he lives on in her.
The last scene is Adelle DeWitt over looking the damage in her Dollhouse. We wonder what she is thinking. Does she regret selling her soul to Harding to regain her place at the Dollhouse? Does she blame Echo for all her problems, and believe Echo should be shipped to the Attic?
Next week, we'll see if Paul can be saved somehow, and we'll also see what the Attic is all about, thanks to someone who we remember from last season.
Even though Dollhouse will end its run in a little more than a month, both episodes actually gained a tenth of a point over last week, attracting more than 2.4 million people.

Recap of Dollhouse "Meet Jane Doe" or The Last Temptation of Adelle DeWitt

There's nothing more troubling than a missing Active.
Adelle DeWitt has been busy trying to find Echo, who has gone off the grid thanks to removing her GPS chip in "The Left Hand".
Her bosses are not happy. They decide to make some changes, while Echo is busy with another MIA employee trying to battle prison abuse in Texas.
In the end, Adelle DeWitt will make a choice that will not be popular, but keeps her alive...which is all that matters to her.

The episode opens with Topher complaining about how Bennett Halversom tricked him in "The Left Hand", but he's not willing to tell Ivy, his assistant, all the details. Not at first. He does call Bennett "ice cold, truly wicked, with a shriveled-up raisin for a heart." He'll later discover that describes someone else.

Adelle asks Boyd if they have any idea where Echo and Ballard are. She's worried that Echo can't possibly survive in her doll state, even with 36 people inside her. She's also worried what Rossum will do to her and her house if she doesn't find them.
She winds up in Medina, Texas, dumpster-diving and looking for food. She's unclear on how to get money, asking an ATM for cash. She also sees Galena, an illegal immigrant trying to use food stamps but the clerk won't accept them. Echo steals some cookies and given them to Galena, but they are approached by two deputies who don't know Spanish. This is important. Galena is caught, but Echo gets away when she clobbers a deputy by remembering how to do that.

Advance three months, and we see Adelle is demoted to tea lady while Matthew Harding has taken over the L.A. Dollhouse. She sees how the main company now prefers to send Actives to any job, no matter whether they'll survive it or not. She used to care about that because she could. Boyd wonders if Adelle is upset she's not the boss, or the changes Rossum has made. It's both.
Topher, though, is happy, because he's got more resources, even as much as what Bennett has in her DC Dollhouse. He even uses Sierra and Victor as his assistants.
We also see Echo is now Nurse Jane, who volunteers to give flu shots to the local jail after the usual nurse got sick. We later learn it's part of a plan to spring Galena out of jail, because she's getting beaten up by the guards. Echo/Jane also takes advantage of the fact the deputies don't speak Spanish, and tells Galena what to do while the guards have no idea.

So how has Echo stabilized into Nurse Jane? She has help...from Paul Ballard. We learn she's able to pick and choose from the people inside her. For example, we found out Rebecca, Joel Mynor's wife, was a nurse. The other skills come from other people. It's kind of like one part Matrix, one part Johnny Mnemonic. We also see they're getting cozy in their small apartment, and it looks like she's falling for him. She insists it's real love from her real self. He's not so sure. Even if that's the case, he can't love a girl with 36 people inside, her. Besides, he's still smarting from his affair with Mellie/November.
Echo does say she's disturbed about the memory of her old self, Caroline, that Bennett showed her last week. "I've been saving this body for her," she says, "and I'm not her." She is Echo, and Echo loves Paul.
But business is business, and what starts as sex soon goes into training and planning for Galena's escape. It does look sexy, though.
Back at the Dollhouse, Topher brags of what he's been able to do thanks to more R&D money. She asks what he's doing, but Harding is also there wondering why Adelle is wondering. That's bad, at least according to Bennett. It's also clear Topher is Harding's favorite. She does get good news: Echo's been found...because Paul Ballard just called. He's not giving the whole story to her, but will to Boyd. Paul tells Boyd that while Echo is getting smarter, her body is deteriorating. There's some question how long she'll last.

The plan is that Galena takes verapamil to fake her death, and Echo/Jane gets her out. She also learns from Sheriff Rand, who's played by Glenn Morshower (aka Aaron on 24), that sometimes the guards get out of control, but it's all part of everyday life in the jail. Anyway, Echo/Jane's plan almost works, and they're brought back into the jail.

Back at the Dollhouse, Clive Ambrose (Mr. Rossum) and Harding tell Adelle they're opening a house in Dubai, and should decide which Actives to transfer there. Let's just say Sierra may be headed to the Middle East. Afterwards, she asks Boyd how she can get her job back. He says the Adelle he knows wouldn't ask that question. This is really eatnig at her. She'll do anything to be Queen Bee in L-A, and that is very unfortunate.

At the jail, Rand wants Galena and Echo to explain themselves, or else. After he leaves, Galena asks Echo what they should do. Echo tries to think of something, but the headaches stop her. Then, she goes into Taffy mode, as in Miss "Blue Skies" back in "Gray Hour." They get out thanks to her bra as a lockpick. Eventually they get away, and Paul hands the Sheriff proof of abuse in his jail. Seems Echo was wearing a wire to get the proof.

Then the Dollhouse reveals some new toys that will send mankind on an express trip to the apocalypse in 2019. Topher demonstrates a new gun that remotely wipes an Active. He uses Kilo, who talks like Missy Eliot until he zaps her. She's again played by Maurissa Tanchareon, one of the writers of this episode. However, he also tells Adelle about another device that will imprint anyone with a new personality, whether converted into an Active or not. She's upset, and suggests Topher keep it well-hidden.

Back in Texas, Echo and Ballard send Galena on her way with cash and a new identity, No imprint needed here. It also means they have to go back to the Dollhouse.
Speaking of which, we find out Adelle handed the Super Imprint Gun to Harding to get her job back. She'll claim it's to protect the L-A Dollhouse, but this is the real reason: "In the end, power is always used to get more power; and if Rossum has this much, I've little interest in being with the other team".
Topher, in the "other team", calls her the coldest bitch he's ever met. She slaps, him, because she doesn't care. She's in charge again, and it will stay that way, no matter what. Just ask Laurence Dominic, if we can find him in the Attic.
Paul and Boyd get that message, too, after Adelle decides to keep Echo in isolation to see what else she can do. In other words, she's been put in a very special Attic, where she won't be a threat.

Now, looking at the responses from Whedonesque, some are disappointed by Adelle's decision. Some are hoping Adelle is only doing this to get deeper into the Rossum inner circle, and that's when she'll double-cross Harding, Ambrose and everyone else.
However, since when has she ever thought Rossum had to be taken down? That's what Paul believes, and maybe Boyd and Topher, too. To quote a thing known as the First, "It's not about right, it's not about wrong. It's about Power." Power, and avoiding a life sentence in the Attic. This is all that Adelle DeWitt wants. The hell with people. Since when have they given her what she wants?
This has got to backfire, but let's hope she'll at least have time to partially atone.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Recap of Dollhouse "The Left Hand", or A Pair of Tophers on the River

It's ironic that CSI's theme song is "Who Are You" by The Who, because that would be a more appropriate theme song for this episode, "The Left Hand". Here, two Dolls try to asset their true selves, a woman will get betrayed, Satan shows up, and two computer geniuses make small talk while planning betrayals. We also see more proof that Enver Gjokaj is the best unknown acting genius in Hollywood who should be well-known as soon as possible.

We return to Bennett Halverson's lab at the DC Dollhouse. She's still torturing Echo, but we don't know why. Bennett also wonders why Echo doesn't cry out for God because she's in pain. She sees Echo as a shell, in a feeble, simple world where there's "just pain, over and over." Oh, and when we get to "why", then it gets worse. She'll see to that.
Cindy, meanwhile, spills everything about Rossum's plan to disassociate itself with the Dollhouses. She points out that Perrin was a nobody until Rossum "improved him" to become the rising star of the Senate, meant for better things (for Rossum, mainly). She also says being his wife was awful, but he'll forget what she just said.
As for Adelle and Topher, they're in DC to talk some sense into the Dollhouse there and get Echo back. They also hope to scan Daniel's brain and stop Maddie from testifying. Topher's all excited by the car and the booze, but Adelle tells him to calm down.
Back to Bennett, she shows Echo a cartridge that has her memory of the last time she saw Echo. Whatever happened, it ended badly,and cost Bennett her left hand. She then imprints it into Echo's head. Now, recalling Joss Whedon's claim that the memories in the cartridges that were uncovered in "Epitaph One" may not be the whole story, maybe that goes for what Bennett shows Echo. We'll see.

Adelle meets with the head of the DC Dollhouse, Stewart Lipman. He's played by Ray Wise, well known as Leland in Twin Peaks and Satan in Reaper. As Lipman, he says he'd like to give back Echo, but there are protocols to follow, She interfered with Rossum's plan for Perrin, and it takes time. He also asks why Topher is there. He says he has his "best man" filling in for him. It's Victor as Topher 2.0, or rather, VicTopher.
How good is he? It's like Topher has a younger and geekier brother, and it's very uncanny.
Meanwhile, Bennett is told Topher is there, and she suddenly acts like...well...a girl. She fixes her hair, and prepares to meet him. Seeing these two exchange pleasantries and small talk is cute, yet disturbing. He compliments her accomplishments while she says his skin is like a pig. After they calm down, she tells Topher he won't get Echo back but is welcome to look her over.

At the office, Lipman suggests Adelle leave town without Echo. Adelle then tries to use her seductive charms to convince him to compromise. They consist of grabbing his reproductive system, then calmly telling him she gets Echo back or he'll be killed horribly and get castrated...maybe in that order. In fact, she says this in such a sensual manner, it's also quite arousing. Now, how come she couldn't do that to Matthew Harding?

Topher looks over Echo and notices she's been drugged. Bennett plays dumb, but not about his disruptor ray. She even suggests how it can be made into a taser. He then tries it on her, sort of, just to check if Bennett has always been Bennett. He's able to start getting a download of Daniel's brain scan, whch is needed to stop the hearing. As he's doing this, he talks to VicTopher, and they chat about what Bennett's like.
Meanwhile, Daniel wakes up, and finds Echo. She gets a flash of that memory Bennett gave her, and suddenly her left arm hurts. They leave, and Bennett sees this, Instead of stopping them, she slams her head into a monitor. That way, she can say Echo did this, and keep Topher on her side.

As we see Daniel and Echo in their "Doll state", we see they're two simple people who can figure things out. That's not in the brochures, but it is now. They're smart enough to remove the GPS chips from their necks.
Then, Topher and Bennett come up with a plan to disable the two Dolls from a distance, thanks to Topher's ray. Of course, he'll need Daniel's brain scan to do it, and hopefully this is where he remembers to double-cross her.
Still, he is quite taken by her, and her technology in her lab. He's also surprised that she claims a brain can hold many imprints. In Daniel's case, they retain his true self while making him "better". Well, we may not hold to that, as Mal Reynolds would say, but maybe Echo's proving Bennett's point with three dozen or so selves inside her. It's also pretty ironic that Summer Glau is portraying the type of "computer technician" who abused and scarred River Tam's brain to make her a weapon in the name of Blue Sun and the Alliance. Maybe Bennett is what River Tam could have been after they finished using her as a soldier.

Daniel returns to the family compound, but he wonders which of his memories he can trust. Echo asks "does it matter?", and we switch to a memory where he's talking to Cindy. She tells him that despite his past, "all that matters is who you decide to be." Considering that's been pre-programmed, it's ironic. Still, he figures as the DollSenator Perrin, he can still do damage to Rossum. Echo's worried, though. She wants to stay as Echo, and not turn back into Caroline. That may be due to Bennett "reminding" Caroline how she left Bennett behind in an accident, which led to her losing her left hand. As long as these Dolls assert their true humanity, they can decide who they can be.
Then Topher uses his disruptor ray on Daniel and Echo. It does nothing to Echo, but turns Daniel into an assassin. Bennett explains Echo deserves this. She says Echo was her friend before she deserted her in that accident. She also notices Echo has a hold over people, or Topher wouldn't consider the Doll as his friend. Well, that's enough to end this love story, and Topher knocks Bennett out.

While Echo tries to run away, Daniel is determined to kill her. Echo's pleas to Daniel, especially saying that "you can belong to you" don't work. Cindy arrives, but doesn't understand what's going on...until he strangles her to death. Topher re-zaps Daniel just in time to realize what he's done. What will he do? What will Echo do?

Daniel gets to the hearing and reveals his wife is dead. He's also come across a shocking discovery: a group of companies is trying to destroy Rossum because of its medical advances. This group is responsible for planting a bomb in his car...which Cindy happened to be inside when it blew up. Maddie, meanwhile, was actually in a mental institution in Canada for three years, much to her surprise. In short, there is no Dollhouse, and Maddie's insane.
You can trust him. He's Senator Daniel Perrin, a man with a vision of the future who has given up everything. He loses a wife, but gains respect and credibility. Brought to you by Rossum, because Your Mind is Our Business..and key to global domination. Eat your hearts out(or whatever internal organs you have), Visitors!

So what can Adelle do? Nothing, except find Echo and hope that will stop Rossum somehow. Maddie, meanwhile, will be thrown to the wolves. She really winds up in Bennett's clutches, and becomes a Doll again. She'll be a handy tool in her plans to kill Echo, or worse.
In the end, Dollhouse as we know it is over, and a new era begins with Echo on the run...but where will she go?
One thing is for sure: she is much more capable in deadling with the outside world than Adelle thinks, but is that enough?
And where's Paul Ballard? Now that Maddie/Mellie/November's a Doll again, his agreement with Adelle is over. What will be his role in all this?

We have a sci-fi show that makes profound statements about identity, self, and manipulation, and it's been given a death sentence even before it gets a chance to prove itself. That's why Fridays on Fox will be known for Gordon Ramsey and his intimidation of would-be chefs, and leftover reruns. If only Fridays could be known for drama that can be considered a gourmet treat.

Fans of Dollhouse can still feast on double-headers on the 11th and 18th, which promise the return of some familiar faces.

This week's doubleheader pulled in slightly more than two million people, with a .82 rating. That's much less than reruns of House and Bones.

Recap of Dollhouse "The Public Eye", or Worse Than Palin

Daniel Perrin is too good to be true.
He's got good looks, a distinguished pedigree, a beautiful wife, and dreams of a better future.
Now he's going to take on a major corporation, who he says is guilty of unspeakable things that include human trafficking, prostitution, or maybe murder.
Daniel Perrin...a new hope for America.
He's just too good to be true, because he the worst way you can imagine.
Welcome back, Dollhouse. You may be in the middle of a "going out of business sale", but it is leaving in a blaze of glory.

The first of the December doubleheaders started with "The Public Eye", where ex-Active Madeline Costly, aka MadMellieVember, is about to testify before the Senate about how Rossum stole three years of her life by putting her in the Dollhouse. In fact, he'll give the word "Dollhouse" a more sinister definition. Before that, we see Perrin and his wife Cindy make small talk. She asks him to remind her how much she loves her. He says "I'm Your White Knight", and she says she's his "damsel".

Matthew Harding, one of the bigwigs at Rossum, isn't happy. She asks Adelle why she was dumb enough to let Madeline out of her contract early. Well, the good news is that Rossum has a backup plan, and Adelle should let her bosses execute it.
Adelle's worried that may mean Madeline will be silenced, as in dead, if she testifies. It's not that she's going soft. She thinks Maddie's being used as a pawn against her...but why?
They look over Perrin's background, mainly that he's been investigating medical research for three years. Topher just thinks he's a demagogue. Echo just thinks Maddie is said, but someone else "doesn't look right". She's talking about Cindy Perrin, who Daniel claims is so perfect it's like she was made for him. Could she be a sleeper?
Her background, and lack of accurate info, suggests that. If so, Paul Ballard should see that scene in "Man on the Street" where Maddie/November killed Hearn after she was told about flowers in a vase. That will let him know what Cindy could do.
Speaking of which, she is comforting Maddie as she is looking at pictures of some of the things she did as Active Mellie, including sex with Ballard. Then Daniel calls, and we see the "remind me why I love you" exchange again.

Back at the Dollhouse, Topher demonstrates his new Disruptor Ray designed to disable Actives. He brings in test subject Kilo, played by Maurissa Tanchareon, one of the writers who's also married to the brother of....some guy. Well, we see that with his new ray he can stop...any Active, but it will cause headaches, nosebleeds and fainting. It will also work on Maddie because she still has some of that reprogramming in her. Paul sees that even ex-Actives don't leave the Dollhouse. It's kind of like the Stop-Loss program.
What about Echo? Well, she will have a role to play. She'll pretend to be Senator Perrin's one-night stand he doesn't remember because he wad drugged beforehand. He quickly figures Rossum's behind this, and decides to keep Echo, aka Bree, as evidence. First, he decides to see Cindy, which Echo/Bree suspects could be a threesome in the making.
As he's driving, Perrin tries to convince Bree/Echo she's a Doll, but she thinks it's some weird fantasy he has. They get to a safe house just as Paul finds Maddie. Paul uses the Disruptor, and it knocks out Echo, Maddie...and Perrin!
Behold Senator Pinocchio,and Cindy/Geppetto, his wife and handler!
This comes as a big surprise for the Dollhouse, along with the fact that Bree/Echo drives away with Perrin. As she's looking for a "big aspirin", she gets flashes of her past lives on the show. This convinces her she's a Doll.
As for Mrs. Perrin, she takes the Disruptor, and leaves her guards to take care of Ballard. After his bribe offer is rejected, he takes care of the guards.

So who is Daniel Perrin, exactly, or was he? He thinks he is Perrin, not a Doll, even as his past "memories" are flashing before him as he's driving. Topher discovers Daniel was actually a screw-up despite his family's past accomplishments. Somehow, he became the rising junior senator by being "improved". That's not being a Doll or Sleeper.
Cindy Perrin does find Daniel and Bree/Echo. She tries to calm him down with the "remind me why you love me" code, but it isn't working. Echo has a tussle with Cindy, and subdues her by just remembering what her past selves did before. Echo does come up with a great line to Cindy before they leave: "You just woke up a lot of people (inside Echo), and they all think you're a bitch."
Maddie confronts Paul at LAX just as she's headed to DC. She just asks what was she before. He tells her she was Mellie, a neighbor who wanted to help his investigation...and it was all real. She asks him that if she is really Maddie, she should be free to make her own mistakes. "Am I free?" she asks. She walks away, and he doesn't stop her. That's the last we see of Paul this week.

So, what is Cindy Perrin's plan, and how come it looks like only the Dollhouse in L-A is against it? Adelle figures that Rossum wants a Senator it can control, namely Perrin, so he can pass laws that help the company. He'll also clear Rossum of any connection with the Dollhouse, leaving Adelle and the other houses out to dry. It's a metaphor of Fox's decision to cancel the show without giving it a chance in sweeps. Otherwise, we would have seen this during the first two weeks in November, then get a break until December 4th. That would have generated interest.

Switch to Washington, where a woman is busy typing on a very strange keyboard. It urns out to be...River Tam?
Actually, her name is Bennett Halverson, a programming genius just like Topher. She's just more twitchy, driven, and insane. She also has a dead left hand. Three minutes with her, and we get the whole picture. She wants her secretary not to wonder about what the bosses want, or they'll wonder about her. She says that since they work in the center of the human heart, they give up everything. She already has a plan of how to reprogram Daniel so he'll forget what he just did. Something about a movie with a dog is involved. Soon, Cindy arrives with her husband, who's confused about where he is, and who Bennett is. Cindy says "That's God, dear, and you have heartily offended her."
Bennett, however, is more interested in Echo. It seems they've met before, and that she had promised to come back. So, Bennett welcomes her "old friend"...with searing pain.
Now what? Well, we'll find out soon.