Dr. Horrible DVD: Yes, It’s Worth Your Money

drhorribleamazonLet’s face it — by now, the hardcore fans of Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog have watched the series more than once on Hulu, downloaded and memorized the soundtrack thanks to iTunes, and maybe even bought themselves a Captain Hammer t-shirt. Of course, that won’t stop them from buying a copy of the DVD — but what do they get for this latest show of devotion? And what about the less-fanatical, who enjoyed the series but aren’t sure about dropping $10 on something they’ve already seen for free? In short: In these tough economic times, is the Dr. Horrible DVD worth your money?

Thanks to Dr. Horrible‘s minions (OK, the very nice person who sent me an advance copy), I had a chance to explore the disc this week, and I’m happy to report that, no matter who you are, the answer is yes. The devoted fan who’s already pre-ordered four copies (one for themselves, three for the loved ones who are getting it for Christmas) will be more than satisfied. The online video enthusiast, seeking to better understand this year’s undisputed king of web series, will find plenty of insight in the special features. And newcomers to the phenomenon, looking to enjoy a funny media experience, will also walk away happy — because the DVD presents Dr. Horrible in the best possible light. Read More about Dr. Horrible DVD: Yes, It’s Worth Your Money

Hulu, Dr. Horrible Make Time’s 50 Best Inventions of the Year

1. DNA tests. 2. Electric cars 3. An unmanned moonship. 5. The world’s biggest particle accelerator.
What are we missing here? No. 4 — Hulu.com.
That’s right, easy access to TV on the web is changing the world, according to Time, which just released its list of the 50 best inventions of 2008. We totally agree.
By the way, even better: Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog finished at No. 15, just ahead of the world’s first moving skyscraper and an expressive robot. Good enough for the Evil League of Evil?

Dr. Horrible Goes Live, and More on Joss Whedon’s Evil Plans

Joss Whedon’s Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog goes live today (go here to buy it on iTunes) with the first of three all-singing, some-dancing installments, the way it was meant to be seen: on your computer monitors. But how was it on the big screen? I had a chance to see it (and review it) at last Thursday’s cast-and-crew screening, where it played beautifully — Nathan Fillion’s manly attributes and big musical numbers getting almost equal amounts of applause.

From left, writer Maurissa Tancharoen, Joss Whedon, Jed Whedon, Felicia Day and Nathan Fillion; and Neil Patrick Harris, back, in a hat. Photo by David Sarno, used with permission.

And afterwards, Whedon, stars Neil Patrick Harris, Nathan Fillion and Felicia Day, and co-writers Jed Whedon and Maurissa Tancharoen hung around to answer a few questions, mostly revolving around the difficulties of production when not working with a studio. With an estimated budget in the low six figures that came directly out of Whedon’s pocket (“I sold a lot of Girl Scout cookies,” said the man with two different TV series in syndication), the project’s pedigree makes claims to guerrilla filmmaking a bit hard to swallow. But everyone involved clearly relished the chance to participate in a project made under conditions Whedon defined as “street legal” — even if, in Whedon’s words, the hectic seven days of shooting “broke a few people.” Read More about Dr. Horrible Goes Live, and More on Joss Whedon’s Evil Plans

Whedon to Pioneer New Distribution Model

Joss Whedon’s upcoming writers’ strike-inspired web series, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, is the closest thing to a sure hit online, even if it is going to be a musical (hey, that’s just unusual — not bad!). Turns out Whedon has a pretty interesting plan for pleasing fans, making a big impact, and perhaps making a bit of money, too.

The plan (which was first posted as a comment on a fan site, I believe) is to release the three parts of the 42-minute project on July 15, July 17 and July 19 respectively, for free. But at midnight on July 20, “They will vanish into the night, like a phantom (but not THE Phantom – that’s still playing. Like, everywhere.),” as Whedon put it. After that, the whole thing will be available for purchase.

I like it! A way to have scarcity without signing some exclusive deal with a portal whose audience isn’t necessarily your fan base. A way to get everyone in the same place, buzzing about what you’re doing without depending on outside promotion. Hey, maybe it’s something only Whedon could do, but it’ll be exciting to watch it play out.

Read More about Whedon to Pioneer New Distribution Model

Whedon’s Web Musical Fanboy-tastic!

The wonderfully nerdy fruits of the writers guild strike are starting to ripen. Buffy the Vampire Slayer creator Joss Whedon started writing a three-part musical Internet series during the strike with his brothers and the result, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, is coming to soon to a computer near you. The teaser trailer just “leaked” yesterday and is full of fanboy fodder.

Teaser from Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog

Dr. Horrible has high production values and an allstar cast including Niel Patrick Harris as the low-budget villain, The Guild’s Felicia Day as my his love interest and Nathan Fillion of Whedon’s Firefly as the “superhero who’s kind of a dick,” as Fillion describes it. The film was one of the last projects shot on NBC Universal’s New York street set, which burned down earlier this month.

Read More about Whedon’s Web Musical Fanboy-tastic!