Struggling sci-fi series Dollhouse will be pulled by Fox temporarily to showcase slightly better ratings.
FOX has removed its regular Friday lineup for the vaunted November sweeps period, which begins Thursday, October 29th. Dollhouse and ‘Til Death will go on hiatus, while new series Brothers joins Fox’s Sunday lineup.
A rerun of the House season premiere will air on Friday, October 30th. House and Bones repeats will fill the night through November. Despite the network’s move to temporarily nix Dollhouse from its lineup, Fox executives still plan to air all 13 of the episodes they ordered for the series.
Co-written and created by beloved fanboy icon Joss Whedon (Firefly), Dollhouse has been struggling to pull in viewers since its debut last year. Though it has experienced a small bump in viewership from DVR viewing, the series starring Eliza Dushku has been left languishing on Friday nights where it is being beaten in the ratings by Smallville and new cable series Stargate Universe.
Dollhouse revolves around a secret lab that conditions women to become a paying customer’s fantasy or job. From a simple date to rich socialite or trained mercenary, “dolls” can handle any and every situation. At the end of each job, the doll’s memory is erased. It makes its return on Friday, December 4th with back-to-back episodes featuring the first appearance of Summer Glau, whose series, Terminator: The Sarah Conner Chronicles, was canceled this past summer. The double runs will continue through December 18th, leaving three of the show’s 13 episodes to run in 2010.
Dollhouse is averaging only 2.83 million viewers a week, and it’s the best performer for Fox on the night. Brothers has been drawing 2.51 million viewers and ‘Til Death 2.37 million.
Joss Whedon posted on his fansite, Whedonesque.com, that he wasn’t losing any sleep over Fox’s actions. “Howzabout that schedule? Well, I’m not as depressed as everyone else,” he said. “We weren’t about to rock sweeps anyway, and though there’s a chilly November, December is CRAZY. It’s like an Advent calendar of episodes!
We get November to try to spread the word (which I’ll be leaning on Fox to do, though it’s hard to imagine them doing as good a job as the WhyIWatch guy) and then December is pure gluttony.”
It’s not all sci-fi for Whedon as Glee co-creator Ryan Murphy recently stated that the Buffy the Vampire Slayer creator will direct an episode of the musical comedy.
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