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Casting directors need to recognize

There are a lot of things about Battlestar I can buy into that, if it WEREN'T this show, would have made me turn the channel seasons and seasons ago. It's good, and intriguing, and it gets all sorts of slack from me.

However, my faith in Ron Moore and Battlestar in general notwithstanding, I had to pause the thing and take a quick palette-cleansing breath when Jon Fucking Hodgman showed up as a surgeon. (EDIT: That "fucking" was borne from frustration - Hodgman's one of my radio heroes, just oddly situated on a space ship.)

I didn't have a problem when Nana Visitor showed up to guide Roslin through her cancerific sick bay stay and conveniently died because Visitor is, after all, an actor who (whenever she gets work these days) plays characters not named, say, Nana Visitor. Believing Hodgman is anybody other than Hodgman, however, takes a willing suspension of disbelief waaaaay more powerful than mine. If it wasn't such an intriguing episode that Hodgman realistically only takes up a minute of in two discrete chunks, I would've been more ticked off, but I can't help the feeling that Hodgman got somebody to do him a solid for the sheer, series-ending please-oh-please-let-me-be-a-part-of-this-amazing-geekery of it. More power to him, but it wasn't effective casting.

- - -

The problem with Dollhouse, from what I can tell from the only episode to have aired so far, is that dumb actors have a hard time playing smart, and smart actors have a hard time playing dumb. Eliza Dushku has been asked to play both types in one show, and while she's expert at pulling off one she's completely incapable of convincingly portraying the other. Unless she gets dumped into someone else's body at some point (I would get Amanda Peet to do it, or Mary Louise Parker 10 years ago if time travel were involved, but what the hell do I know) I don't predict I'm going to be on-board this particular raft for for very long.

Then again...it's Whedon. Anything's possible.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 15th, 2009 05:56 am (UTC)
I don't know which role Ms. Dushku does well because I haven't seen it. But she's a dead ringer at many angles for the girl an ex cheated on me with, and I don't know that I'll ever be able to watch her with any degree of sympathy for that absurd reason. (The girl who was party to the cheating is far less attractive, but they could be sisters.)
Feb. 15th, 2009 06:06 am (UTC)
I *really* wanted to see this and I'm terribly sad that I forgot. I'll have to catch it online... <3 whedon
Feb. 15th, 2009 06:12 am (UTC)
It's on Hulu. I'm really lovin' the Hulu, I have to admit.
Feb. 15th, 2009 06:39 am (UTC)
I get how hard it is to erase Resident Expert / Greeting-Card Guy / "I'm A PC" from one's memory, but if John Hodgman hadn't played any of those people, I could easily imagine him as a kindly doctor. (I haven't seen the BSG episode yet so I don't know if he is kindly.)
Feb. 15th, 2009 06:47 am (UTC)
Part of it is that I'm familiar with Hodgman's voice on a radio-intimate level because I grew up listening to his radio journalism before bed for years and years and I think of his as one of those voices from childhood that's impossible to shake, like Douglas Adams' or Sarah Vowell's.

The other part of it was, he wasn't playing a kindly doctor. He was, my biases aside, playing Jon Hodgman iiiiiin spaaaaaaave.

Still a rockin' episode.
Feb. 15th, 2009 02:38 pm (UTC)
Doo de doo, I'm john hodgeman! Bedside manner? NEVER!

"Actually, I would have expected him to be awake by now..."
Feb. 15th, 2009 06:15 pm (UTC)
I don't know...
We had the opposite reaction to BSG's "brain surgeon". For us it went, "Oh, it's the dude from those commercials! Thank goodness, the tension in the OR is killing me!"

As for Dollhouse, well I'm looking for a miracle...
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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