Inside Joss’ Dollhouse: Part 1

As some of you already know, I had news the other day that left me somewhat speechless (blog-less?). An essay I wrote about Dollhouse (the TV show – not the Lundby variety) is going to be included in an anthology of fan essays from Smart Pop Books: Inside Joss’ Dollhouse! Best of all, the (completely unauthorized) anthology is edited by none other than the amazingly talented Jane Espenson!

For a Whedonist geek girl like me, this is extraordinary, over-the-moon, Cheshire-grin-for-days-and-days news. There are so many layers of goodness to this news that I’m prone to fits of girlish glee at the thought of it all. (I’m neither girlish nor gleeful on an average day)

When I first heard about the essay contest, I thought it would be cool to explore an idea I’d been batting around since the first few Dollhouse episodes. Then I read on and learned that Jane Espenson (Jane Espenson!!!) would be the Editor of the anthology. Which made me all the more determined to submit my own contribution.

The idea that Jane Espenson has read (and enjoyed) something I wrote is thrilling to me. She’s written for Buffy, Angel, Firefly, Battlestar Galactica, Tru Calling, etc. etc. Of course, she’s also written for Dollhouse, including one of my favorite episodes: Briar Rose. Though, funny enough, that episode didn’t make it into my Dollhouse essay.

So what is my essay about? Essentially, it’s a philosophical look at what constitutes personality in the Dollhouse mythos, and how it compares to positive/negative space as represented by Rubin’s Vase (the optical illusion that shows both a vase and two faces in silhouette). It’s an idea that occurred to me early on in the series and deepened as the show moved forward. I don’t know if other Dollhouse fans will agree with my comparisons, but I love having a chance to share my theory in this anthology.

If you’ve read other Smart Pop Books anthologies, such as Finding Serenity or Serenity Found (great books for Firefly fans; also Edited by Jane Espenson) you know that they cover a diverse range of subjects. Like Firefly vs. The Tick, which includes an entirely enlightening analysis of evil mustaches in the Verse, or the thoughtful look at Zoe and Wash in More Than a Marriage of Convenience. (Just two of the essays from Finding Serenity that instantly came to mind a year or more after reading it.)

I can’t wait to read this Dollhouse anthology. I’m sure to love some and hate others (in that love-to-hate-a-differing-opinion sort of way). No matter the emotions, I expect it will be a great read to help me cope with the reality that Dollhouse has actually ended (too soon).

The book is due to be published in the fall, but is available for pre-order on Amazon now. Check it out, tell your friends. With any luck, the Dollhouse season 2 DVD will be out by then and you can have a whole Dollhouse marathon before diving in to the essays. (You know you want to!)