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Stuff You Should Watch: Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog (Webisodes)

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Doogie Howser just got a whole load scarier. And awesomer.

Update!: Watch it all right here right now!

That’s Neil Patrick Harris dressed up as a mad scientist supervillain singing a song in a Joss Whedon (creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Firefly, Serenity and the upcoming FOX series Dollhouse) written and directed free web series. Did I just die and go to nerd heaven? I think I did. If you’re not already there now (the website, not nerd heaven), you should watch Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog and then come back and read why you did what you just did.

The Setup: Joss Whedon (from all those credits above) wrote these three musical webisodes with his brothers Zack and Jed earlier this year during the writers strike.

Neil Patrick Harris (best known for being Doogie Howser but I bet he hates that) stars as the titular Dr. Horrible who is trying to sum up the courage to speak to the girl of his dreams (Felicia Day – Buffy the Vampire Slayer, The Guild) who he met/saw from afar at the laundromat, defeat his arch-nemesis Captain Hammer (A cheesy on  the outside Nathan Fillion – Captain Mal on Firefly) and gain entrance into the ‘Evil League of Evil’ (for which he submitted an application).

"This here salsa's from New York City!"

According to Joss, Dr. Horrible is kind of an experiment in finding a new medium in which to tell stories that differs from the current system which is subject to crippling strikes every few years. He gives an analogy here on his FAQ for Dr. Horrible.

Once upon a time, all the writers in the forest got very mad with the Forest Kings and declared a work-stoppage. The forest creatures were all sad; the mushrooms did not dance, the elderberries gave no juice for the festival wines, and the Teamsters were kinda pissed. (They were very polite about it, though.) During this work-stoppage, many writers tried to form partnerships for outside funding to create new work that circumvented the Forest King system. 

Frustrated with the lack of movement on that front, I finally decided to do something very ambitious, very exciting, very mid-life-crisisy. Aided only by everyone I had worked with, was related to or had ever met, I single-handedly created this unique little epic. A supervillain musical, of which, as we all know, there are far too few. 

The idea was to make it on the fly, on the cheap – but to make it. To turn out a really thrilling, professionalish piece of entertainment specifically for the internet. To show how much could be done with very little. To show the world there is another way. To give the public (and in particular you guys) something for all your support and patience. And to make a lot of silly jokes. Actually, that sentence probably should have come first. 

A caption could not make this any funnier. 'Do not bounce' ha ha.

A caption could not make this any funnier. 'Do not bounce' ha ha.

The Good: It’s quirky, it’s fun, it’s hilarious and the music is even good (actually very good – especially in Act II – but that’s all I’ve seen so far). NPH is both comic and tragic and so likable as the villain in the story, as Fillion does an excellent job of being both heroic and smarmy. Day is a good tempering balance between the two and everyone sings well. It’s quite the treat. An in-depth analysis really doesn’t do Dr. Horrible justice. It’s full of wit, heartedness (of the light variety), laughs and funny new takes on the comic-book genre. Really, I love it.

The Bad: Honestly, I can’t think of any downside except for the fact that it’s only going to be online for a week. The first Act debuted on the 15th, the second today – the 17th and the third and final act will be on Saturday the 19th. Then it all comes offline on the 20th. So you need to catch it quick before it goes away. (But it will still be available on iTunes and there is going to be a DVD release later according to Mr. Whedon.)

It's like that scene in Mission Impossible 2, but with vans, and songs, and not crappy.

The Skinny: Watch it! Watch it now! When I do, I can’t help but with that someone would give it money and make this into an ongoing TV series because I could watch this stuff all day (but then that would undermind the whole point of the exercise). It hits me in just the right spot and it’s so much fun and it’s got a’ Ph.D in Horribleness’.

9.85/10 (I’d give it a 10 if it were going to stay online longer.)

Watch it Online: Check out the whole series on Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog (drhorrible.com) or click on the image below!

Also, if you want to know more about how this series works and who is involved. This blog has gathered an inhuman amount of information about it. Whatup!

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Written by canasian

July 17, 2008 at 10:10 am

5 Responses

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  1. Great article and thanks for the mention. Though I must point out I’m all too human…:)
    With Act III out so soon I hope everyone is making sure they have seen the first two.

    It has exceeded all my expectations – and they were pretty darn high! I can’t wait for Act III, but in a way it’s going to be sad, too, because that will be the end. Well, until the DVD comes out and we get to hear the musical commentary they have done for the musical…

    worldofhiglet

    July 17, 2008 at 10:32 am

  2. Dr. Horrible was great. Great blog. You should also check out this under the radar new webisode done but students at USC…especially if your a fan of CSI (or more especially if you hate CSI)

    http://www.funnyordie.com/cleanupcrew

    pipboy2000

    July 22, 2008 at 3:48 pm

  3. I loved it! I found it on iTunes, and being a fan of Whedon, best dialogue writer ever, downloaded it sight unseen and was very happy with it! I hope more webisodes like this start to come out.

    Rob

    July 27, 2008 at 11:00 pm

  4. Hello webmaster
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    Alexwebmaster

    March 3, 2009 at 7:05 am

  5. Great site, I will be back. Well done

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    January 26, 2010 at 10:33 pm


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