Late to the Party: Doctor Horrible’s Sing Along Blog

Both Michelle and Tiffany have been badgering me to watch Doctor Horrible since we started this blog. I’ve put if off time and time again, but I finally sat down and watched it. For those of you who haven’t seen this approximately 45-minute short, well, the title is fairly self explanatory.

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Image Courtesy of Mutant Enemy Productions

Doctor Horrible (Neil Patrick Harris) is an evil mastermind who blogs and sings about his misdeeds and plans to rule the world. However, his alter ego is in love with a regular girl named Penny (Felicia Day). His arch nemesis, in life and love, is Captain Hammer (Nathan Fillion). Captain Hammer is more brawn than brain, but he manages to foil Horrible’s nefarious plots at every turn.

Doctor Horrible’s main goal in life is to get into the Evil League of Evil, and to do that he needs to come up with his most dastardly deed ever. Helping him is his not-so-terrifying sidekick, Moist. With this plot in mind, Joss Whedon weaves an interesting tale about a young man straddling the line of good and evil. Will he succeed is his horribleness and join the League, or will he give up his wrongdoing to win the girl?

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Image Courtesy of Mutant Enemy Productions

I love Joss Whedon, Neil Patrick Harris, and Nathan Fillion so I had very high hopes for this short. I also love musicals and superhero/supervillain stories so I thought this would be right up my street. I was disappointed, however. While it has since been explained to me that the parody style utilized in the film is intentional, I’m not a big fan of it. Doctor Horrible is a likable enough character (his conscience prevents him from killing anyone), and NPH plays him well. Captain Hammer, however, is dumb as a box of rocks, and just about as annoying as stepping on a Lego. Again, I love Nathan Fillion, but I sincerely disliked this character despite the fact that he is supposed to be “the good guy.” Additionally, the character of Penny is really underdeveloped, even for a short film. Instead of being a dynamic, interesting damsel-in-distress-turned-heroine she’s a quiet do-nothing who gets caught in a stereotypical love triangle. My biggest beef with this film, though, is the ending. It is abrupt, it is heart wrenching, and it is (pun intended) horrible.

Image Courtesy of Mutant Enemy Productions

Image Courtesy of Mutant Enemy Productions

According to Michelle and Tiffany, you’ll probably really like Doctor Horrible if you like Rocky Horror Picture Show and other spoof-y, campy stuff. While I fully acknowledge that this is a short film, and therefore has a limited time to tell a story, I’m used to much more character development from Joss Whedon. This tale, on the whole, was a downer.

So, what do you think of Doctor Horrible’s Sing Along Blog? Are you with me, or is it your most favorite thing EVER? Let me know in the comments!

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