At 3:20 pm ET Wednesday, THR.com reported that Fox had canceled Joss Whedon series ‘Dollhouse.’ The news isn’t shocking – it faced challenges since its debut, from being relegated to a Friday night slot to constantly struggling in the ratings.
Although it didn’t come as a complete surprise, the news still stung for the series’ loyal fanbase. Within moments, Twitter was slammed with reactions, and ‘Dollhouse’ reached the Top 10 Twitter Trending Topics thirty minutes later. By 4:30 pm ET, it was the second most talked about subject.
Twitter wasn’t just a forum for dismayed fans. The people behind ‘Dollhouse’ also shared their feelings on the cancellation in 140 characters or less.
The first person from the Whedon camp to make a statement via Twitter was ‘Dollhouse’ writer Maurissa Tancharoen (@MoTancharoen), who confirmed the news. “Yes. Cancelled. Sad but true.”
Dichen Lachman (@Dichenlachman), ‘Dollhouse’s’ ‘Sierra’, followed suit, and encouraged fans to stay with it until the end.
“Keep watching guys fox is still showing all 13,” then added, “Feel sad though. Joss told us this morning.”
Lachman had delivered a powerhouse performance last month in “Belonging”, arguably the finest episode in Season 2 so far.
Actor Fran Kranz (@frankranz), aka ‘Dollhouse’ programmer ‘Topher Brink’, later tweeted, “It’s hard. I’m sad. But they will air the rest and they are going to be great. Thanks for being great fans and giving us all a 2nd season.”
Jane Espenson (@CapricaSeven), writer/producer extraordinaire, commented it was a “sad day for television.” She was a consulting producer on ‘Dollhouse,’ and has been part of the Whedonverse since Buffy.
Other TV industry folk chimed in as well, including ‘Bones‘ executive producer Hart Hanson (@HartHanson), who tweeted his thoughts on the demise. “Agh. Dollhouse! It’s always a bummer when one of your neighbors on the lot gets Grim Reapered. The cold chill of mortality.”
Based solely on the strong Twitter response, you’d think ratings would have been the least of Dollhouse’s problems. @kryptonsite summed it up best: “I find it interesting that Dollhouse can trend on Twitter yet can’t get huge ratings.”
The series was always a hot topic in the online world, but a significant online presence and solid DVR numbers were not enough to save it.
Following the news, Whedon gave a statement, saying: “I’m off to pursue internet ventures/binge drinking. Possibly that relaxation thing I’ve read so much about. By the time the last episode airs, you’ll know what my next project is. But for now there’s a lot of work still to be done, and disappointment to bear.”
The only consolation is there are 9 more episodes yet to air, and Joss Whedon is being given the opportunity to end the series properly.
‘Dollhouse’ will be “sent to the attic” on January 22nd, with the following air schedule:
12/4 (2 hours)
12/11 (2 hours)
12/18 (2 hours)
1/8 (1 hour)
1/15 (1 hour)
1/22 (1 hour / series finale)