DR. HORRIBLE’S SING-ALONG BLOG
Friendly Rating: Elementary age and older
Safety Rating: Not for young kids, violence, sex talk
Quality Rating: Fun and weird with forgettable tunes
Special airs on The CW tonight at 9 p.m.
I have to concede, it’s been a while since I last saw Dr. Horrible (which you can download here from iTunes, but I’m too cheap to), and when I did the circumstances were… Well, almost as weird as this original web mini-series is.
Our friends Jane and Dan were having a 24-hour movie marathon during Thanksgiving weekend a couple years ago. I remember it came up around midnight or so (we started at 6 p.m.) and… (why can’t I remember this lovely woman’s name???) anyway, one of Jane’s friends and I kept making jokes about the “ruggedly handsome” Nathan Fillion, who stars in Dr. Horrible and was starring in the third season of Castle – during the opening credits of which Fillion (as author Richard Castle) saw his reflection in the window and remarked “I really am ruggedly handsome.”
And truth be told, that probably is the best way to see Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. A pitcher of margaritas doesn’t hurt, either. Which says a lot about the show’s suitability for young folk.
The plot is pretty simple. Dr. Horrible (the immensely talented, but not ruggedly handsome Neil Patrick Harris) wants to join the Evil League of Evil, but has to do something really dastardly. The problem is, he’s in love with Penny (Felicia Day). But super-hero The Hammer (Nathan Fillion, and still ruggedly handsome) foils the day and keeps making a play for Penny.
Safety-wise, it gets pretty violent and bloody, with pretty much everyone dying by the end of the show. I can’t remember if there’s any sex. I *think* there’s some sex talk, but the big issue is the violence.
The web series, of three 14-minute episodes, was created in 2007 during the prolonged Writer’s Guild strike, by producer Joss Whedon, who did shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly and a bunch of others. Harris was probably the most prominent member of the cast, with much of his audience having grown up on Doogie Howser, MD, and he’d also been starring in How I Met Your Mother for a couple years by then. Fillion had starred in Firefly (note to self – make sure Firefly is in the Netflix queue), and Simon Helberg (who plays Moist – don’t ask) had barely half a season of The Big Bang Theory under his belt before the strike sidelined him.
Fillion became Castle, Felicia Day did two seasons of Eureka as Dr. Holly Martin and has done several other web series, most notably The Guild. Both Harris and Helberg are on the same series.
Anyway, Dr. Horrible is a fun little bit of fluff. I found the songs utterly forgettable, but the lyrics are on posted on the show site, DrHorrible.com, if you want to attempt to sing along. It’ll be interesting to see how The CW does with this one.