Monday, July 21, 2008

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog, the review

As you know, I was really looking forward to seeing the internet musical Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. It was typical Joss Whedon in a number of ways: great music, fantastic casting and acting, intelligent writing, decidedly unhappy ending, random reference to a florist. In another way, however, it did come up short. Whedon is well known as a feminist with incredibly strong female lead characters, and there was not one to be found here. Penny was the least developed character of the three, and primarily served as a prop for arch-nemeses Dr. Horrible and Captain Hammer.

That said, the show as a whole only confirmed to me that Whedon is a creative genius. Whedon is at his best when he explores complex characters that don't follow stereotypes. In Dr. Horrible, he addresses the questions of what makes a hero a hero, and what makes a villain a villain. His "hero" was a bully and a womanizer who cried at the slightest pain; his "villain" was a computer nerd who desperately wanted to fit in. One was in love with the pretty girl from the laundromat; the other just wanted to show her his "hammer." Particularly given the super tight budget of this project, which was filmed during the writers' strike, I have to give it full props. Whedon will continue to feature strong women. But for once, it was enough to simply enjoy the singing, the laughs, and the terrible twists.

No comments: