DOLLHOUSE

Dollhouse: Haunted - Echo is a dead person. Post comments here.

POSTED BY: HAKEN
UPDATED: Tuesday, May 5, 2009 12:42
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Friday, April 24, 2009 6:24 PM

HAKEN

Likes to mess with stuffs.


Adelle imprints Echo with the her dead friend's memories and personality to solve her dead friend's own murder. How cool is that? Bet Sherlock never saw that coming.

'Haunted' is the 10th episode in the series. Two more to go. Three if we're lucky and 'Dollhouse' gets renewed.

Though, might be difficult. Low ratings from a couple of weeks back, plus skipped an airing last week, and then a lead in with ratings challenged 'Prison Break' tonight. Almost like pouring salt over an open wound.

Let's hope tonight doesn't end up being a out of sight and out of mind kind of an evening for 'Dollhouse.'

Post comments here and wish for good ratings.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 1:02 AM

HAKEN

Likes to mess with stuffs.


Awfully quiet and the evening is already over, which isn't a good thing. Not that everyone comes running on here anyway after an episode of 'Dollhouse.'

Well, tonight's episode was rather...how shall I put it? Not what they should be showing for the home stretch with only two episodes left? Hmm...yep.

I'm not saying that it's a bad episode. It's just that it pulled back whatever forward momentum the last few episodes created.

The Good:
Life everlasting, now that's an interesting use of the imprinting technology. I'm sure there are ethical and technological reasons why it shouldn't be used for that purpose, but the episode never quite delve into it. Instead it meandered across a whodunit and focused on relationships, love, and a sense for closure when someone passes away. For sentimental reasons, this was okay.

Other major good point with the episode: Eliza is fully clothed for a change. Though, I must admit, I wouldn't mind seeing her in that dominatrix outfit again. Shiny!

The Bad:
The whole Topher subplot along with the message it carried, while interesting and fun, ultimately didn't have the same impact as when it was first told to us in 'Needs.' Why rehash the whole 'we have needs, we have to connect' message? We get it. It's been imprinted onto our my brains. With only 12 episodes in the season and only 2 to go after tonight, there's no need in repeating the same message over and over again. Should have moved on, but instead this all ended up being a filler for a (arrgh) standalone episode.

The Ugly:
Ballard's entire interaction with Millie seems forced and confusing. Most of the time I couldn't tell if Ballard was at a lost for words or if he was disgusted, pissed, etc.. It's like Ballard was channeling an evil version of Horatio Caine from 'CSI Miami.'

Ballard's actions certainly don't clear things up for me either, especially after he learns Millie's true identity. There's a very adult two word term for what he did and it starts with the word 'grudge' and ends with...I'm sure you can figure out the rest. At this point, I can't tell whether he cares about the other dolls besides Echo or not. Regardless, Ballard definitely has issues with Millie--most likely for all the wrong reasons, however confusing they may be.

That's pretty much it. I'm still reeling from the fact that this was a standalone episode. Doesn't make sense to me at all. Hopefully enough people will remember tonight's otherwise forgettable episode and come back for Alan Tudyk as Alpha next week.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 1:59 AM

CLJOHNSTON108


Haven't watched the episode yet, but they posted about it over at io9...
http://io9.com/5226072/dollhouse-clips-prove-this-show-can-do-anything

This episode seems like Richard K. Morgan's Takeshi Kovacs novels (Altered Carbon, Broken Angels & Woken Furies), which all revolve around the concept of downloadable personalities: A person's consciousness is stored in a "cortical stack" at the base of the skull, and if they die, they can be "re-sleeved" in a new body.
So, a person can theoretically live forever, as long as their cortical stack doesn't get destroyed.
Of course, the rich can afford regularly-updated remote back-ups of their stacks (and cloned sleeves).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Altered_Carbon
In Altered Carbon, Kovacs gets hired by a wealthy client (whose personality is about 300 years old!) to solve his own murder, which the police believe was a suicide.
One of the key problems is that the client's remote stack is updated every 48 hours, so he has no recollection of the events immediately prior to his previous sleeve's death.
From the posted previews it seems Adelle's dead friend has a similar gap in her memories.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 2:02 AM

DAVESHAYNE


Last nights ep was more of a client of the week show than an arc show that's for sure and coming on the heals of all awesome of the last four it is a bit of a let down. Still enjoyable enough.

Life everlasting: The ethical problem here isn't that people could become immortal it's that in order to do so they have to displace somebody else. Certainly they glossed that over a bit, in part I guess, because Joss assumes we're smart enough to figure that out for ourselves.

Topher: I kind of liked the Topher stuff. It reinforces my feeling that he's actually a twelve year old. Brilliant, but just a kid. And how sad is it that for his birthday all he has to look forward to is laser tag with a meat puppet and three candles in a Twinkie?

Ballard's interactions: Ballard is very conflicted here. In order to bring down the Dollhouse and save Mellie/November, Echo, and all the rest he has to continue a sexual relationship that is essentially rape. He has to hurt, greatly, the woman he loves in order to destroy the organization that created her. And when the Dollhouse goes down the woman he loves will be gone too. How messed up is that.

Stand alone: Not every episode has to have Major Arc Implications. I think they made a mistake earlier in the season in not spreading the stand alones out with the arc episodes more but getting a breather from the big events here isn't too distracting.

Next episode: Wash!



David

'Geeks can't admit that anything worthwhile was invented before 1981. Soon, "making cocoa" will be called "milk hacking."' - Lore Sjoberg

http://xkcd.com/386/

"Don't worry. Captain Hammer will save us." - Penny.

I has myspace - http://www.myspace.com/daveshayneforpresident

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 2:29 AM

FLATTOP


Life everlasting: I wouldn't be at all surprised to find out that another branch of the HomeOffice has a cloning research facility, and is planning to offer immortality to a few select people. In addition, it'd be much cheaper to imprint a fully trained Operative onto a new body than it is to train them from scratch. The bodies would be totally untraceable, no finger print records, no military DNA matches, etc. How to raise the body to a 22 year old hardbody physique without waiting 22 years and requiring it to have enough of a mind to work out, and be fully functional once imprinted...

Topher: Loved it. Yeah, it's covering territory we've already been over, but now it's Topher's turn to have a dream date. We get to learn a bit more about him as a person.

Ballard: Conflicted only scratches the surface. The woman he loves does not exist. Raises all sorts of inner personal demons. Is there anyone out there that would actually love me? Or is my only chance at a relationship with someone that's been programmed to put up with me? Once Millie is gone, Now what?
That Ballard is having a few problems reconciling himself to using the services that he's sworn himself to eliminating is to be expected.

Stand alone: Totally. A few interesting lines, Topher as a person, Ballard admitting he's a client; five minutes of arc, the rest was just fun.



----------

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 3:39 AM

KIRKULES


The hypocrite vigilante cop is driving me crazy. Anyone find it disturbing that he is obsessed with stopping the Dollhouse but has no problem sexually exploiting one of their "victims" at the same time. He has got to be one of the stupidest characters ever conceived. I hope they kill him off in the next episode because it would really help the show in my opinion.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 4:56 AM

DEWRASTLER


Quote:

Originally posted by Kirkules:
The hypocrite vigilante cop is driving me crazy. Anyone find it disturbing that he is obsessed with stopping the Dollhouse but has no problem sexually exploiting one of their "victims" at the same time. He has got to be one of the stupidest characters ever conceived. I hope they kill him off in the next episode because it would really help the show in my opinion.



To me he looked miserable in this episode. It was eating him up inside that he had to pretend to love Mellie in order to keep from being found out by the Dollhouse. He only had sex with Mellie once she seemed on the verge of distancing herself, and then he went and took a shower because he felt so disgusted with himself. He doesn't want to do these things, but has to so the Dollhouse doesn't know he knows, and he hates himself because of it.

________________________________
People who don't care about anything will never understand the people who do

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 6:01 AM

EVILDINOSAUR


what show were you watching? he has a big problem with it, he's disgusted with himself.

"Haha, mine is an evil laugh."

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 7:32 AM

GILLIANROSE


He bought the Dollhouse line "It doesn't have to mean anything." The Dollhouse premise that a person can exploit another human being for their own needs, without thinking about the moral implications. Ballard called Miner a predator a few episodes ago, but my interpretation is, he fell into the temptation to take out his anger against the Dollhouse on one of theirs, I guess since she isn't a "real" person who would remember being treated the way he treated her. And, they were together all night - he's showering in the morning and she remarks about how crazy "last night" was, and makes more than one remark to show she wasn't entirely comfortable with what happened. I can't say I hope he dies, but he didn't make the hero's choice here, did he? He could have been gentle with her, she's innocent in all this. He could have figured out some way not to sexually exploit her. I felt like, the forceful way he was kissing her and pushing her into the wall, he was acting on his anger. And yes, in the morning he sure was disgusted with himself. I wonder what his next move is going to be.

On another note, maybe I missed something, but shouldn't there be a consequence for Ballard finding and disabling the little camera in his air vent? Was that why the Dollhouse sent Mellie back? I would think there would be more of a response, the camera works all the time and Mellie can only see and hear what he chooses to share. Can someone please fill me in if I'm missing something?

Last, I don't know that Ballard loved Mellie, even before he found out she was a doll. She'd been the neighbor he barely noticed. Then, after Miner makes remarks to Ballard about his probable isolation, he invites her over for dinner. They spend a little time together, end up in bed together. They were starting a relationship, liked each other, he may have thought it had a future. But I don't know if he loved her yet or not.

Overall (yeah I know I said Last, last paragraph) I liked the episode. Maybe a stand-alone is thought to be more relatable for people who are just tuning in? /shrug, but I'm looking forward to Alan next week.


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Saturday, April 25, 2009 7:35 AM

WHOZIT


Go to http://tvbythenumbers.com if you want to know Fridays ratings, it's getting to depressing and I'm tired of posting bad news, sorry.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 7:48 AM

YINYANG

You were busy trying to get yourself lit on fire. It happens.


I felt like the previews for the next episode were more interesting than this one. I did like the Ballard subplot; I think it was well-done, and did what I wanted it to do - admit Ballard's complicity in the affairs of the Dollhouse. I do wish he'd found out more, but the fingerprint scan erasing was alright, I guess, and the next episode looks to be great. Topher with geek Sierra was really awesome, and he is definitely a big twelve year old - unlike pretty much every other Dollhouse client, there was no indication (at least that I saw) that he got sexual (AKA rape-y) with her. Although Topher is still pretty damned by his actions, I'm more okay with liking him.

Everything else - Echo's assignment - was blah.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 7:52 AM

GILLIANROSE


I liked Topher and Sierra's story. It struck me that both he and Adele had "dates" that knew all about the Dollhouse. So they have to program a Doll in order to have someone in their lives they can talk to about their work. It made me think how isolated they must be. And if it is Topher's birthday, as the Twinkie would suggest, that makes me infer he has no family or he has no contact with them. And, does he live at the Dollhouse? I wonder if his "friendship" with Sierra will ever be a factor in the future, will ever influence what he'll be willing to send her to do, especially with that creepy man who claims to have made her a Doll in the first place.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 9:36 AM

VELROOM


Please don't put spoilers about an episode in a subject heading cause those of us with RSS feeds from this site get the subjects, and it spoilerizes us if we haven't seen the ep. :) No biggie, but just a reminder that one can get spoiled without coming directly to a thread, just by headings. Thanks.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 9:50 AM

HAKEN

Likes to mess with stuffs.


Quote:

Originally posted by velroom:
Please don't put spoilers about an episode in a subject heading cause those of us with RSS feeds from this site get the subjects, and it spoilerizes us if we haven't seen the ep. :) No biggie, but just a reminder that one can get spoiled without coming directly to a thread, just by headings. Thanks.



Sorry about that. I thought it was fairly common knowledge since it was in all the promos.

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Saturday, April 25, 2009 8:43 PM

ASARIAN


Quote:

Originally posted by FlatTop:
Topher: Loved it. Yeah, it's covering territory we've already been over, but now it's Topher's turn to have a dream date. We get to learn a bit more about him as a person.


Loved that as well. And I'm beginning to like Sierra more and more, too.

Problem just is, the timing of this episode was a bit off. And I'm not referring to its time-slot or whatever, but to having three virtually identical themes aired twice in a row: Echo as spy-investigator + a Dollhouse staff member indulging in a private indiscretion + a doll wanting to have a doll (Sierra wanting to play with the 'sleepies'). That could have been handled better.

The 'Life ever-lasting' skipped on the more interesting aspects of 'resurrecting' a dead person, but was fun nonetheless.

And Echo looked more beautiful in this ep than ever before.


--
"Mei-mei, everything I have is right here." -- Simon Tam

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Sunday, April 26, 2009 3:36 AM

BIGRICHARD


I actually really liked this episode and wasn't that put off by the lack of story arc. But I do agree that it's odd they had this so close to Needs.


Echo: Eliza was brilliant at playing the posh, rich woman who was finding out about herself through her loved ones eyes, although, as previously said, it could have explored the everlasting life option a bit more, although I think they did well, basically saying that you had to take over someone else's life and that Adele wasn't willing to exploit her business like that, and her friend realised that, and had accepted a peaceful death, rather than an inevitable more horrific one.


Ballard: I agree that he did what he felt he had to do with Millie, that only when she was beginning to distance herself did he 'bite the bullet' and sleep with her. I think the way it happened seemed right, as he was angry with himself and with the dollhouse for making him do this, and it shows that he doesn't really consider Millie a person anymore, just another assignment. His shower seemed to symbolise his attempt to cleanse himself.

Topher: I really liked the Topher storyline, even though it was similar to DeWitt's in 'Needs'. Mainly because you always see Topher talking and joking with other people who treat him fairly poorly. They ignore his jokes and seem to almost 'use' him for his mind, rather than care for him as a person, and it was heartbreaking to see that the only way he can have a 'friend' is by creating it. Almost like a small child who has to invent a friend at kindergarten because all the children there tease him/her.


I look forward to next weeks episode (even though I switched off before the preview) just to get back to the story arc, but this episode was fantastic, if only for the ideas it presented and the additional pieces we got to some of the character puzzles.

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Sunday, April 26, 2009 8:47 AM

BYTEMITE


The Topher thing was my favourite part of the episode! I especially liked when they were throwing the ball around and Sierra was sounding off on common problem tropes in the sci-fi genre. It's kind of a look see into Joss' mind about what he thinks is overdone.

I stopped disliking Topher probably somewhere between the third and fifth episode, it's hard to hate someone when they are just incapable of realizing that what they're doing is wrong. I mean, look at Firefly, does anyone hate Kaylee because she helps out on crimes? Granted, her personality is more endearing than Topher, and maybe her engineering has less direct criminal implication than Topher's technology. But like Topher, she doesn't seem to acknowledge the morally questionable nature of her job.

And hey, at least he discouraged the idea about making the "sleepies" engage in gladiatoral combat. Although that was probably more because DeWitt would kill him than concern for their well being, but who knows?

Ballard? Bad deal. It's hard exactly for me to tell just how much of what he did was Mellie seducing him and him giving in even though he knew it was only what she was programmed to do, and how much of it was trying to protect both their covers. Heroes aren't so heroic, you know, and not everyone can be perfect and unaffected all the time. I do feel bad for him and November.

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Sunday, April 26, 2009 2:47 PM

BIGRICHARD


Quote:

Bytemite originally said:
I stopped disliking Topher probably somewhere between the third and fifth episode, it's hard to hate someone when they are just incapable of realizing that what they're doing is wrong. I mean, look at Firefly, does anyone hate Kaylee because she helps out on crimes? Granted, her personality is more endearing than Topher, and maybe her engineering has less direct criminal implication than Topher's technology. But like Topher, she doesn't seem to acknowledge the morally questionable nature of her job.





Ahh, but see now we're getting into two things:
- Is what Topher is doing 'wrong'?
and
- Just how bad were the crew of Serenity?


In the first instance, you feel bad blaming anyone in the Dollhouse, I particularly like Topher, Boyd and DeWitt, as I have from the start, mainly because, most of the time, I don't have a problem with them. The Dollhouse, most of the time it seems, isn't anything wrong. It's all about filling needs, and most of the time, it's keeping people happy, not to mention helping situations (at the school when the virus got loose) and saving kidnapped children, among other things. The only real trouble I've had with the Dollhouse is since finding out that Sierra wasn't there of her own free will, which makes it possible that others aren't either, which is worrying, hopefully a rational explanation for why DeWitt would do something like that will come about in the future, it's possible she struck a deal with Sierra as well, just like Echo.
Regardless, Topher is still young, and sometimes acts younger, but that could be due to his lack of socialising with people his age. Currently he hangs around with very few people, and those that are around, are much older and very serious most of the time. Topher, being the genius he is, probably had a very lonely childhood, especially since he reached however old he is now, and has already developed this technology. He possibly realises what he's doing is wrong, but doesn't know anything other than science, and that he is (fairly) greatly appreciated in the Dollhouse, which might keep him happy enough.

Wow have I crapped on long enough. I'll leave the other question open for now.

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Sunday, April 26, 2009 3:08 PM

BYTEMITE


Well, yes, what he's doing is wrong. I hate to resort to trite arguments, but the ends don't justify the means. Dollhouse may be helpful, but what they do to actives is abuse, regardless of happy non-stressful, peaceful, yoga enriched environments.

And erasing people is a lot like murder, whether or not the Dollhouse has their consent.

I suspect none of the actives were willing; November's story about wanting to forget the death of a daughter seems slightly contrived. Would Victor and Echo found simiarly shallow backstories if they had looked? Was what Sierra found out what she was supposed to find out?

My opinion of the crew of Serenity is that they have the capacity to do harm. They don't mean to and most likely have good intentions, but in their line of work, they don't always find out just what it is they're stealing, and they don't always return the medicine when they do.

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Sunday, April 26, 2009 3:40 PM

BIGRICHARD


I don't really disagree with any of your post, as I see exactly what you mean, but that doesn't mean I agree with it exactly. Really I need to know more about the Dollhouse before I decide if it's right or wrong, or if it really is one or the other.


On the crew of Serenity, you've hit the nail on the head, they don't mean to do harm, but I guess, for instance, it's better Jayne is helping them than the thugs he was helping before, and they do help some people in their line of business, so I'd say they hop between being 'good' and 'bad'.

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Sunday, April 26, 2009 5:49 PM

YINYANG

You were busy trying to get yourself lit on fire. It happens.


Not to pick on you, BigRichard, but your assessment of the Dollhouse is troubling to me. Even though there are some acknowledgments here and there that the Dollhouse is bad, you (and many other viewers, I'm sure) seem to have missed those. I don't really have a problem with you, though; I think the show just isn't doing a good enough job conveying this point.

Here's the thing - let's say that the people who joined knew what they were getting into, and were not coerced but signed up voluntarily (both of which I highly doubt). Regardless of that, every engagement the dolls go on that involves "sex" is really rape, because they have no choice in the matter - they're programmed (forced) to say yes. In addition to that, every treatment is like a high-tech date-rape drug, and in a way, it's rape again - mind rape. And this happens over, and over, and over again. Anyone who would do this to someone else is sick IMO - I don't care if they justify it with "we're just providing a service, helping people" - and any organization that's run off of this is unequivocally bad.

Another way to look at it is this - people like Caroline have been put to sleep, and for all these years that they're sleeping, their bodies are often used as "sex" toys. Now, someone who is "having sex" with a sleeping person is really raping them, because you cannot give consent if you're asleep, and any consent you gave before you fell asleep is not blanket permission for someone to do with you whatever they want. So, again, even if Caroline did give un-coerced consent to the Dollhouse (which doesn't seem likely to me from what we've seen of her with DeWitt), she couldn't possibly have been able to give consent beforehand for every single scenario her body's been used for, and (at this point) has no way to stop it from happening. This makes what the Dollhouse does to her rape, and therefore wrong.

In short: the Dollhouse is bad. Very, very bad.

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Sunday, April 26, 2009 6:22 PM

BIGRICHARD


Ok, the point I'm trying to make is
- yes the dollhouse is bad, I definitely know this. However what I'm saying is, Topher and his equipment aren't. I know I'm wording this horribly, I mean that on a whole, I don't have much of a problem with Topher's equipment and science and idea, but the clients/management of the Dollhouse seem to have no problem with exploiting this science. My point is, Topher probably sees himself doing good, and he does, because some of them are helping people, and he probably focuses on these, ignoring the more sexually oriented engagements. You can see Topher's care for the science through his engagement, you could put it down to his 'younger mental state', but Topher doesn't violate any of the dolls, he doesn't create himself a 'girlfriend' per se, but more of just a friend, someone to chat to and hang out with, once a birthday. I'm not saying that should be the SOLE purpose of the dollhouse, but he doesn't misuse the dolls in any way, and realises that they're suppose to be treated more human than other clients treat them.

So yes Dollhouse=bad, idea=good. I confuse myself often, so I've probably contradicted myself in other posts but this is basically what I'm trying to get at.

Not to mention, I have a problem with the fact that DeWitt seems to promise the actives money and a life after they've been dolls, yet they're constantly put in situations where they can die. If they DO die, DeWitt has arranged that the Dollhouse gets more money from the client, yet the active is then dead and so the Dollhouse saves even MORE money (that which would've gone to the doll), that seem right to you?

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Monday, April 27, 2009 4:58 AM

ASARIAN


Quote:

Originally posted by BigRichard:
I don't have a problem with them. The Dollhouse, most of the time it seems, isn't anything wrong. It's all about filling needs, and most of the time, it's keeping people happy,


Say what? The Dollhouse is bad. Very bad. Fulfilling a need, you say? I'm sure every, say, Indian barbershop that offers 'special services' in the back -- which is to say, let's degenerate men rape small children, many of which often die before reaching the age of ten, even -- fulfills a need, too. But I wouldn't go and offer 'fulfilling a need' as any justification for it, though; would you? Likewise, the Dollhouse fulfills a need as well; but always at the expense of another: ay, there's the rub.

Quote:


.. not to mention helping situations (at the school when the virus got loose) and saving kidnapped children, among other things.


Same deal. You can't give with you right hand what you take away again with your left; i.e., you can't abuse one kid (Echo) to save another abused child.

Quote:


The only real trouble I've had with the Dollhouse is since finding out that Sierra wasn't there of her own free will, which makes it possible that others aren't either,


That's gotta be the understatement of the year. And that's understating it. Let's spell it out, here. Caroline was clearly coerced into being there. DeWitt had at least the break-in on her; and the stuff Caroline had seen, she was likely given the 'gracious' choice of either being prosecuted, or worse, even: suddenly mysteriously disappearing one day. Caroline's almost desperate appeal to DeWitt, about how she only wanted to make a difference, obviously fell on deaf ears. Not because DeWitt didn't get it, but simply because she had a bit of young, exploitable prey in her clutches, and she wasn't gonna let go.

Quote:


... hopefully a rational explanation for why DeWitt would do something like that will come about in the future, it's possible she struck a deal with Sierra as well,


A 'rationale,' for certain; a 'rational explanation,' never. Sierra's story was particularly sad and painful. She didn't want to have sex with some rich guy, and he had her 'fixed.' Simple as that. And then, in a sadistic twist, they let her be herself again, for a few hours, enough to tell her she's gonna give him many more happy returns. It's sickening, really.

And Topher? Creating a SciFi buddy seems harmless enough; but, in real-life, a pretty girl like Sierra probably wouldn't give him the time of day (or, if she would, he didn't bother to find out the regular way, did he?). They let these Dolls do stuff they wouldn't normally do on their own accord. That's what makes all this a grotesque violation; if not a physical one, then certainly a mental one. Yes, to some seeing Echo with a whip might fulfill a need. A good thing, you say? Like the ethics guy said: "Imagine this technology exists... And now imagine it being used on you."

It's human trafficking; it's repulsive.


--
"Mei-mei, everything I have is right here." -- Simon Tam

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Monday, April 27, 2009 5:12 AM

BYTEMITE


And that second to last line, right there, is why I was scared for Topher when Proto-Caroline Echo in Needs seemed about mind-wipe him. This is scary bad stuff, and no one deserves it to happen to them, even the guy who enables it.

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Monday, April 27, 2009 6:29 AM

ZEEK


I've never had a problem with Topher. He reminds me a lot of Wash in the way he acts. His defense is that all the dolls volunteered. So, far we have no evidence that he knows otherwise. Though if Sierra really was forced into her situation it's hard to imagine she wasn't begging for help when they wiped her.

The only person I really have a problem with so far is DeWitt. She's the only one who seems to know whether the actives are coerced or not. If they really did volunteer of their own free will then I don't see much problem at all with the dollhouse. Mainly because of the way they seem to take good care of the actives.

So, the real question is what the harm is if the Dolls are willing volunteers. The Dollhouse seems to do pretty good background checking before an engagement. I assume that include blood work for disease checking. So, there shouldn't be any longterm physical harm. The actives get wiped after engagements. So, there shouldn't be any emotional harm. That leaves no lasting impression on the active that the event ever took place. When their true identity is restored will there really be any harm?

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Monday, April 27, 2009 8:22 AM

BYTEMITE


When drug facilitated date-rape happens, the victims often are rendered unconscious, and their memories of the event are often affected by the drug, to the point where it becomes difficult to prosecute because they can't describe the exact circumstances of the event.

But they do remember, on some level... Some fear when they wake up and have it checked out and confirmed, or if the bastard is really sick, they let their victims know beforehand what they're going to do. And the victims experience a very negative psychological reaction.

So considering that some aspects of engagements seem to remain even after wiping clean to the tabular rosa state... Is the abuse really going to be forgotten? Or covered over once the actives have their own memories restored? I don't think so. I think it's going to manifest itself, sometimes subtlely, sometimes not.

And we're not just talking sex here. In some cases, we're talking angry violent sex and beatings. I feel very, VERY sorry for Sierra, post Dollhouse. Whatever DeWitt says about character checks and protecting the dolls, do you remember what Sierra's regular client in Needs says to her? What he oh so smugly threatens her with? The Dollhouse is complicit in all of that. So long as the dolls aren't permanently damaged or killed, the Dollhouse doesn't seem to care what the clients put the dolls through... And sometimes I wonder if the Dollhouse WOULD care if a doll were killed, beyond an additional fee.

But even worse... I doubt that the actives ever do get their memories restored. I'm sure that's just a line the dollhouse feeds them when they're coercing them into service. But it would be SO, SO dangerous for the dollhouse to let their actives free. Most likely? All retired dolls are sent to the attic.

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Monday, April 27, 2009 9:55 AM

ZEEK


Being drugged is different. The victim knows that they've been drugged and like you said they find out that they've been taken advantage of. It's like their personal security has been taken away. By the time the Dolls get restored (if that happens) I doubt it's anywhere near the same. They're not waking up somewhere all alone. They're waking up in the controlled environment like they expect to.

Let's say they never get their real personality restored. Then it seems even less of a crime. The original crime was wiping them. After that they're essentially dead and there is no real victim. It's almost the equivalent of a clone that is never given brain activity. Just a body.

I think the real crime is the coercion. If that's going on then these people are basically being forced into a life where they have no control over their bodies. It's obviously implied that's what's going on, but since we haven't had it spelled out there's always room for twists and turns in the future. It's never a good idea to get too complacent with assumptions when Joss is running things.

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Monday, April 27, 2009 10:09 AM

BYTEMITE


True enough about assumptions, though I don't think Joss would have any problem making Dollhouse very dark thematically.

If their real personality never gets restored, it's murder. If the actives are abused in their mind-wiped state, it's abuse. Using your analogy, these clones aren't vegetables. They have brain activity, as shown by the fact they paint pictures, communicate, and to an extent have wants and desires, likes and dislikes. Those traits may only goes so far as "I want to take a swim now" "I like the cafeteria food" or "I trust my handler, but I don't like and don't understand what he's doing to me, it's scary." But those functioning traits of brain activity are there. And if they were allowed to develop mentally and personality wise, they would.

In fact, is not allowing them to develop a crime? Are they killing the developing person every time they wipe to the tabular rosa state? Or when they wipe the tabular rosa state?

A person waking up in a safe place after being raped doesn't make the rape right. And it's kind of worse when they wake up in a place, among people who allowed and encouraged the rape. Is such a place really safe?

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Monday, April 27, 2009 11:06 AM

ZEEK


Quote:

Originally posted by Bytemite:
A person waking up in a safe place after being raped doesn't make the rape right. And it's kind of worse when they wake up in a place, among people who allowed and encouraged the rape. Is such a place really safe?


It wouldn't ever make it right but I question what effect it would really have on them. If the physical effects are long gone and there's no real way to know what did or didn't happen to them when they were actives then would it really harm them that much? In our world the physical and maybe even more importantly the emotional harm are the reasons it's such an awful crime. In the doll's world it seems like neither has any impact. Except in the case of Sierra with her handler. That becomes a special case because her imprint did not consent which left an emotional scar. When the dolls are on an actual engagement their imprints are consenting at least for anything we've seen so far.


The part about not allowing them to develop is an interesting question. They sort of create the doll state themselves though. So, is it a real being that they're preventing from development or is it just a computer program basically. I don't think anyone would call it a crime to prevent an artificial intelligence from developing.

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Monday, April 27, 2009 1:41 PM

BYTEMITE


Isn't it? Or is that just androcentricism? Seems to me like even if we create robots, if some develop sentience, awareness, could become their own person... Just what kind of humans would we be to deny that? What kind of human beings would we be to deny the development of our own children, whether they are flesh or metal, mind-wiped adults or brought up from embryos?

Sentience and free will are not commodities. An intelligent being should never be considered a possession.

As for the dollhouse, looks like you and I just have irreconcilable differences about just how affected a person can be... Whether they're consciously aware of it or not.

In my view, on some level, they would be aware. And to subject them over and over again, that is a horror the likes of which no person should ever have to experience. To know something is wrong, that something was done to you, and not know what? That's a far from soothing sensation.

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Monday, April 27, 2009 3:32 PM

PIRATENEWS

John Lee, conspiracy therapist at Hollywood award-winner History Channel-mocked SNL-spoofed PirateNew.org wooHOO!!!!!!


Quote:

Originally posted by FlatTop:

Topher: Loved it. Yeah, it's covering territory we've already been over, but now it's Topher's turn to have a dream date. We get to learn a bit more about him as a person.

Ballard: Conflicted only scratches the surface. The woman he loves does not exist. Raises all sorts of inner personal demons. Is there anyone out there that would actually love me? Or is my only chance at a relationship with someone that's been programmed to put up with me? Once Millie is gone, Now what?



Paul Ballard: He's got a hot sexslave in his bed. He's a guy. Suck it up.

Topher/Sierra: Great script. Good to see Sierra play with emotion for a change. Sad that Topher has no such friends, due to work obsession and Top Secret rules of death for disclosure. Were these the same laser tags units from Castle? Note to Sierra: EAT SOMETHING, it raises blood sugar.

Note to females in the Real World. The Sierra character is hotter than you think. Picture bikini biker stunt chick Jolene from MTV's Nitro Circus, probably a millionairess by now. She'd probably actually have sex while flying without an airplane, like My Crazy Ex Super Girlfriend. I'd do a biker backflip with her off the Grand Canyon anytime. Or not.


www.mtv.com/ontv/dyn/nitro_circus/cast_member/cast_member.jhtml?person
alityId=10629

www.jolenevanvugt.com
www.myspace.com/jolene_63


140-lb hottie Jolene Van Vugt tolerates Fuel Girl strippers in Masters of Dirt


Hot date at the Grand Canyon




Grand Canyon carnage

Point being, Dollhouse writers scored with Topher/Sierra, but was sex part of the script? Or is Topher a gay virgin?

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009 8:05 AM

RIVERDANCER


Quote:

Originally posted by Zeek:
After that they're essentially dead and there is no real victim.


I think that's the exact kind of dehumanizing attitudes that this show is trying to address.

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009 8:58 AM

ZEEK


Quote:

Originally posted by RiverDancer:
Quote:

Originally posted by Zeek:
After that they're essentially dead and there is no real victim.


I think that's the exact kind of dehumanizing attitudes that this show is trying to address.


The problem is the premise creates almost the ideal situation for body trafficking. They throw in some flaws so that it still seems wrong, but if there wasn't coercion and there weren't glitches then the issues are all gone IMO.

Which is why the only person I take issue with is DeWitt. Though I have a feeling we're going to find out she's being coerced to continue her role in the Dollhouse by someone higher up.

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009 10:42 AM

SHINY


Quote:

Originally posted by BigRichard:
it was heartbreaking to see that the only way he can have a 'friend' is by creating it. Almost like a small child who has to invent a friend at kindergarten because all the children there tease him/her.



Was there any indication that the friend was an artificially constructed imprint? Could it have been an actual friend, just like Adelle's rich friend? Heck, could it have been Topher imprinting his own personality into an active so he could play with someone who shares all of his interests? (probably not, or it would be that 'person's birthday as well, but an intriguing idea)

I'm also not so sure this technology is so cut-and-dry evil as so many are claiming. Yes, there is the potential for enormous abuse, but what if someone genuinely and in full knowledge of the uses of and risks to their body, wanted to rent out their bodies for some number of years in exchange for what they considered fair compensation? Is it rape if 1) the body's original owner consented to allow any client to have sex with his/her body, and 2) the imprinted personality was willing as well? There's also the question of whether someone could will their body to the dollhouse in the event of their non-body-mutilating death (would an imprint work on the body of someone who was brain dead?)

It is certain that this technology would lead to everlasting life at least for the super-rich, but I don't think Boyd's concerns about its impact on society and morality is really justified, as the technology (and availability of bodies) seems unlikely to become a widely available to just anyone, and if it's limited to the rich and powerful, well they tend to already be morality-challenged. ;)





---

I don't need a gorram back-spaceship driver!!!

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009 12:57 PM

BIGRICHARD


Quote:

Quote:
Originally posted by BigRichard:
it was heartbreaking to see that the only way he can have a 'friend' is by creating it. Almost like a small child who has to invent a friend at kindergarten because all the children there tease him/her.

Originally posted by Shiny:

Was there any indication that the friend was an artificially constructed imprint? Could it have been an actual friend, just like Adelle's rich friend? Heck, could it have been Topher imprinting his own personality into an active so he could play with someone who shares all of his interests? (probably not, or it would be that 'person's birthday as well, but an intriguing idea)



I had actually thought of some of these things, and, I think it's entirely possible that the character was created by him, based on a mix of himself and a woman. Not entirely based on him because I'm not sure how that would work with the gender issues. I also don't think it's an actual friend, simply because he probably couldn't have got them in for the initial download. ALTHOUGH it could be based on a friend, OR, perhaps when he first invented the technology, he tested it on a friend, it downloaded successfully, but then something went wrong, and he lost the friend. That could be interesting.



As for the other topics which Zeek and Bitemite and so on are still talking about, I definitely see both sides of the argument. I have no problem with your view Bytemite, I simply disagree that it's ALL bad. I don't really agree with what Zeek is saying about "if the subject agrees to all sex before hand, it's ok", I think that's an odd way of putting it, as the very use of these people as 'sex dolls' is wrong, in my opinion. However, if the dolls ARE getting their memory back (I don't agree that it's ok to wipe them if they're not getting their own mind back in a set amount of time) and there is no sex involved, and no danger to the active, then I have no problem with the program particularly. This is, again, assuming the dolls are willing. If it turns out that these dolls are all there against their will, that's another thing I dislike about the Dollhouse. So again, I say, I think the science and technology is good, but the Dollhouse is bad.

As for those who went on about "imagine it was used on you", assuming the technology wasn't used the way it is in the Dollhouse, if I had a set time of 2 years, I was only helping people (even just being someone's platonic friend) and I signed up for it, I don't have a problem with it being used on me. It's almost like being in the army and being away for 2 years. This is all, of course, assuming the technology's flaws are ironed out.

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009 1:16 PM

ZEEK


Why is sex different than anything else? As I said if they're screened for STDs and most likely the female Dolls are on the pill. Then what's the harm? I'm assuming here that anyone becoming a Doll is not a virgin, but I think that's not too far fetched and assumption. If sex itself is not wrong then why is this any different then if they had a sexual partner in their normal lives? They're basically saying it's consensual even if the consent is given far in advance.

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009 1:27 PM

PHOENIXROSE

You think you know--what's to come, what you are. You haven't even begun.


Quote:

Originally posted by asarian:
in real-life, a pretty girl like Sierra probably wouldn't give him the time of day (or, if she would, he didn't bother to find out the regular way, did he?)


I don't disagree on any particular point, but he didn't ask that the active be female. It could have been any of them; Boyd opted to use Sierra. I don't think Topher cared, he wanted a friend, not a sexual romp.

I enjoyed this episode well enough. It made me giggle, and it raised some interesting possibilities. It wasn't the best of them, but I think it was good.

Please don't let this show get canceled...

[/sig]

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009 1:34 PM

RIVERDANCER


Quote:

Originally posted by Zeek:
if there wasn't coercion and there weren't glitches then the issues are all gone IMO.


IMO you're a complete peckerhead lacking any heart or empathy, showing time and time again that you don't give a damn about anyone's soul or humanity. But you're entitled to your opinion as a complete peckerhead, have at it. I would advise against using it as a defense when you inevitably end up on someone's really, really bad side, though.

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009 1:55 PM

BIGRICHARD


Zeek, if you see sex in that way, then you can sign up to have your body used thusly.

I personally see sex as a more intimate, personal thing that should only between two people who are ...I guess, in love. Call me old-fashioned (I'm only 20 though...) but that's what I think, and so if sex is involved (which, in the dollhouse, it is) I agree with the others that it's a bad thing to use people like that. Mind you, if you want to be used like that, go for it, that's up to you.

PhoenixRose makes a good point about Topher. Sure, maybe he knew Sierra was free, but I think it's more likely he just needed someone, as DeWitt says it happens very often, and nothing that happened couldn't have happened between Topher and a male friend as well. In fact, would people make as much of a fuss if it was with a male friend?

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Wednesday, April 29, 2009 4:43 AM

ZEEK


Quote:

Originally posted by RiverDancer:
IMO you're a complete peckerhead lacking any heart or empathy, showing time and time again that you don't give a damn about anyone's soul or humanity. But you're entitled to your opinion as a complete peckerhead, have at it. I would advise against using it as a defense when you inevitably end up on someone's really, really bad side, though.


If I end up on someone's really really bad side for an opinion then I'm not too concerned about that person. If they can't get over the fact that people are different then I'll just feel sorry for them and move on.

Quote:

Originally posted by BigRichard:
Zeek, if you see sex in that way, then you can sign up to have your body used thusly.

I personally see sex as a more intimate, personal thing that should only between two people who are ...I guess, in love. Call me old-fashioned (I'm only 20 though...) but that's what I think, and so if sex is involved (which, in the dollhouse, it is) I agree with the others that it's a bad thing to use people like that. Mind you, if you want to be used like that, go for it, that's up to you.


So, which is it? Is it OK for me or anyone who views sex differently to be used by the Dollhouse or is the Dollhouse inherently wrong? You've gone both ways in one post. It's fine to say you personally wouldn't want to end up as a doll, but that doesn't make the Dollhouse itself bad. I personally don't like dancing, but I don't go around saying clubs are evil.

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Wednesday, April 29, 2009 1:08 PM

SHINY


Quote:

Originally posted by yinyang:
Another way to look at it is this - people like Caroline have been put to sleep, and for all these years that they're sleeping, their bodies are often used as "sex" toys. Now, someone who is "having sex" with a sleeping person is really raping them, because you cannot give consent if you're asleep, and any consent you gave before you fell asleep is not blanket permission for someone to do with you whatever they want.



Here's a thought experiment:

"Hi Caroline, I'm a billionaire nymphomaniac dying of cancer and I really want to enjoy having sex with a few thousand more people before I die...will you let me put my mind in your young, beautiful body for lots and lots of sex with strangers over the next five years in exchange for my entire estate? Here are all the contracts, escrow accounts, video testimonials, and other evidence for your lawyers so you and they can be assured we will spare no expense taking care of your body and that your mind will be safely stored and returned to your body in five years. Agreed?"

If Caroline agrees with full knowledge of the planned use of her body, and her body is indeed used as planned for five years before her mind is returned to it, how is this rape?



---

I don't need a gorram back-spaceship driver!!!

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Wednesday, April 29, 2009 2:23 PM

KIRKULES


Quote:

Originally posted by Shiny:
Here are all the contracts, escrow accounts, video testimonials, and other evidence for your lawyers so you and they can be assured we will spare no expense taking care of your body and that your mind will be safely stored and returned to your body in five years. Agreed?"


Even if I could get you to sign a contract giving me the right to hit you up the side of the head with a Baseball bat, I would probably be charged with assault and battery or at the minimum gross negligence when I put you in a comma. You can't sign away your basic rights, they are unalienable. Once you were in a comma, a family member could get Power of Attorney and make all of the decisions regarding your well being for you. I think just you signing the contract would be enough for a Judge to institutionalise you for your own protection.

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Wednesday, April 29, 2009 4:24 PM

BIGRICHARD


Zeek,
I just mean, if you have no problem with that, then you can by all means think the Dollhouse is good, you're allowed your opinion.

I personally think that the Dollhouse is misusing it's technologies by allowing people to hire the dolls for sex.

And you know that sex and dancing are not the same thing.

Although, Riverdancer was extremely juvenile calling you names, you're allowed an opinion, and you've given reasons why you think it, so I don't think it's wrong, we just think differently, which is fine.
"If we all had the same thoughts and opinions, the world would be a boring place." - My mum :)

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Wednesday, April 29, 2009 7:02 PM

RIVERDANCER


I was thinking more getting on someone's really, really bad side through totally neglecting their humanity and them being of the "opinion" that you were being abusive, but way to spin it!

As to being 'juvenile' I think I said it was just my opinion. I've lurked around enough to opine on how certain members feel about human life. We're all entitled to opinion, right?


No one should have their humanity stolen from them. Neither should such theft be justification for further abuse of someone under the theory that they aren't really a 'person.' It happens every day, it's a driving point of bigotry, and it's never right, and that's the end of that story.

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Wednesday, April 29, 2009 8:21 PM

BIGRICHARD


Sorry if I misunderstood RiverDancer, it just seemed to me like you were saying "if you think that way, you're an idiot".

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Thursday, April 30, 2009 12:57 AM

SHINYGOODGUY


Watched it twice. First time, on air; second time on Hulu.

First impression: I was disappointed with Joss. Here, I thought, was an opportunity to really "kick ass" and go out with a bang; giving the Fox execs something to chew on regarding the show's future. I thought, at the end of this ep, "that was good, but not great" I thought he blew his chance to wow 'em.

Second impression: I saw some things that I didn't appreciate in the first viewing. Like Boyd's concerns over the assignment Echo was on. I got more from it the second time around. I also got more from Ballard's sex with Mellie. Anyway, thought better of the ep upon second viewing.
-----------------------------------------

The impressions: Have to go now, ready to leave work. More later.

SGG

Tawabawho?

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Thursday, April 30, 2009 4:47 AM

ZEEK


Quote:

Originally posted by RiverDancer:
I was thinking more getting on someone's really, really bad side through totally neglecting their humanity and them being of the "opinion" that you were being abusive, but way to spin it!


I call that spin. We're discussing a fictional situation. I don't think anyone is saying this is really something that they'd like to see happen.


Shiny, I think you made the perfect example there. I think that would be illegal in the states because it would be called prostitution. Still if we're talking from a moral standpoint I don't see that as wrong. I guess the real issue is whether or not sex is a sacred act. If a person is not religious then I don't think there's anything for them to worry about.

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Thursday, April 30, 2009 6:57 AM

YINYANG

You were busy trying to get yourself lit on fire. It happens.


Quote:

Originally posted by Shiny:
If Caroline agrees with full knowledge of the planned use of her body, and her body is indeed used as planned for five years before her mind is returned to it, how is this rape?



It's rape because she has no ability to revoke consent, if she were to ever change her mind. Not having the ability to choose, to continue to consent or withdraw it at any point, is a violation of bodily sovereignty. And, IMO, this is what makes rape the awful crime it is - not the damage to the person raped, but the disregard for the rights of people to have control over their own bodies.

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Thursday, April 30, 2009 11:21 AM

BYTEMITE


I'm not religious. That doesn't mean I'm out sexing people every which way and while I'm asleep... Or that I want to. Or that I would consent to have it done to me.

And birthcontrol doesn't always work... That is if you're even on it. Should a woman be able to consent whether or not they conceive a child? I think so. Is it a violation of their body and their choice to deny them their consent? I also think so. Is that a crime? Well, most people don't choose to get stabbed or shot, either. I think an unwanted rape pregnancy has the potential to case harm... And rape itself is often violent, a form of intimidation that causes long-lasting emotional trauma.

Found this opinion article about rape and the way our society treats it on the new york times website. Kind of interesting. Possibly relevant to this debate?

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/30/opinion/30kristof.html?_r=1

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Thursday, April 30, 2009 12:25 PM

ZEEK


How about this one for the discussion? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexomnia

Those people are clearly not consenting and have no control over what they're doing but is it rape? The legal references on there seem to show that it is not. However, it seems somewhat relevant.

I studied abnormal psych years ago so my memory isn't perfect on this one, but I seem to remember the partners involved thought the other person was fully awake and participating. Many have to be told later about what they did. Some are very disturbed by their actions and those of their partner. Others aren't. Are the people who suffer from that evil? Are their partners?

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