Thursday, June 13, 2013

Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog - A Super Villain Musical Tragomedy

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog
Directed by Joss Whedon
Written by Joss, Jed & Zack Whedon, Maurissa Tancharoen  

Starring Felicia Day, Neil Patrick Harris & Nathan Fillion

Tag Lines:
He has a Ph.D. in horribleness!
Freeze ray. Tell your friends.

The world is a mess and I just need to RULE it.

Alternate Titles:
Not this time, buck-o

Ah, Joss Whedon....the man behind Buffy, Cabin in the Woods and of course The Avengers.  Is there anything that this guy can't do?  Well, so far....apparently not.  Dr. Horrible was written during the Writers Guild strike in '07-'08.  Whedon and crew (including two brothers!) produced Dr. Horrible in such a way that they were able to get around the root issues that were causing the strike, proving that you can make quality and professionally done entertainment inexpensively.

It was released on the internet in three acts, each spaced two days apart.  It became extremely popular, even being placed at #15 in Time Magazine's Top 50 Inventions of 2008.  Not too shabby, eh?  It also won a metric shit ton of other awards over the next year or so.  So many, in fact, that I'm not going to name them all here, because let's be'd skip over them and I don't have the patience to actually research that far into it at two o'clock in the morning.


So what's it all about? Dr. Horrible (NPH!) is a wanna be villain who wants to get accepted into the prestigious Evil League of Evil.  He receives a letter informing him that he is being watched and considered for admission.  Dr Horrible keeps a video blog (I'd call it a vlog....but the title of this isn't Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Vlog, now is it?) about his exploits and schemes.  His rival, Captain Hammer constantly foils his plans and to make matters worse, Hammer has his heroic eye on the evil doctor's crush, Penny (Day).

Captain Hammer is a hero in the strict sense....."doing good" and such.  However part of the genius at work here is showing how things are not always as they seem.  While Dr. Horrible is a quietly ambitious everyman who aspires for something more (Even if it is being a villain...), Captain Hammer is the epitome of ever pompous, self righteous bastard that you've ever known.  To watch the unfortunate doctor try and fail in his schemes, you can't help but feel sorry for him and want him to succeed.  Seeing the events through his eyes, you can see Hammer for what he is and you can completely relate.  I don't think there is anyone out there who hasn't felt the sting of being "bettered" by someone undeserving of the adoration they receive.  As they are placed up high on their pedestal, you sit quietly by, unsure of how no one else can see through the bullshit and see them for what they really are.

It's Hammer Time!

When Hammer confronts Horrible and in no uncertain terms informs him that he will sleep with Penny, just because he can and he knows that it will hurt and humiliate him, something snaps inside Dr. Horrible, and he decides to end Hammer's hero days.  The song Brand New Day is a rousing anthem for the underdog, as Horrible strengthens his resolve to destroy Hammer and get the girl.

Penny for your thoughts?

In the first two acts, you steadily feel worse for poor Dr. Horrible, and you'll share his disgust and anger with the dim-witted, mean spirited Captain.  The third acts will take those two factors and intertwine them into and absolutely heartbreaking conclusion that I will not spoil here.  But I will say that this film  (well, I suppose serial is the proper word for this) truly affected me more than I thought it would and I have watched it about 50 times since I first discovered it.

Midnite Cinephile Tally

Body Count One.  The loneliest number.

Boob Count: Not this time, but I'm sure there are a LEGION of nerds out there who wouldn't mind seeing Felicia Day's buppies.

Beast Count:  No creatures or beasties to speak of....unless you wanna count Evil League of Evil head honcho Bad Horse....who is quite literally....a horse!

Final Thoughts
Who would have thought that a Super Hero/Villain Tragomedy Musical could have such an emotional punch?  I recommend this film to anyone and everyone.  I have to give a shout out here to my good friend Allie, who turned me on to this.

Also, keep an eye out for Simon Helbig (Howard on Big Bang Theory!) as Dr. Horrible's friend, Moist (He sweats perpetually!)

Final Rating

Heh heh....I love these guys.

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