"Needs" is the 8th episode of Dollhouse. It was written by Tracy Bellomo and directed by Felix Alcalá. It aired on April 3rd, 2009.


When Echo, Sierra, November, Victor and Mike awaken in the Dollhouse with their original personalities, Echo leads the charge to free the Actives from their apparent captivity and escape the Dollhouse forever. Meanwhile, Ballard discovers the Dollhouse is closer than he thinks.


EchoIn HouseCaroline FarrellOriginal PersonalityLiberate the Actives and find Closure.
MikeIn HouseUnknownOriginal Personality (?)Control Subject
NovemberIn HouseMadeline CostleyOriginal PersonalityGrieve for Katie and find Closure
SierraIn HousePriya TsetsangOriginal PersonalityConfront Nolan Kinnard and find Closure
TangoUnknownUnknownSally Bowles from CabaretUnknown
VictorIn HouseAnthony CeccoliOriginal PersonalityProtect Sierra/Priya Tsetsang and find Closure
WhiskeyIn HouseClaire SaundersScarred Physician loyal to the causeHouse Physician


  • After Caroline meets with Dr. Saunders, she speculates that Saunders is also a 'prisoner' of the Dollhouse. This later proves to be more-or-less true in "Omega".
  • This episode is among the first (if not the first) to establish a timeline within the series, with Topher Brink saying that the year is 2009. It is also the first hint to how long Caroline Farrell has been Echo, when she asks Topher how long she's been in there, he replies "Kinda... more." to "A day? A month?".


Main castEdit

Recurring rolesEdit

Guest starringEdit

Background InformationEdit


Cast & CrewEdit

Joss Whedon said about the episode: ""Needs" was one of the first episodes that I ever dreamed up. It was one of the first episodes I pitched. Tracy Bellomo wrote such a beautiful script and [director] Felix Alcala just made a beautiful show. Gorgeous to look at and well-paced. Everyone was just firing on all cylinders. And it was like, "This is the kind of story we're trying to tell."[2]


"[T]his is a very compelling episode – one I liked even more than "Man on the Street", thanks to the stronger characterizations."
IGN Recap
"This is a good episode, it’s an interesting, logical story. It has acting and writing to recommend it. But it still leaves me uncomfortable and without a bond to it."
The TV Critic Review
"All in all, this was a pretty great episode, even if it lost a little bit of its suspense after we realized this was all just Adelle's game."
io9 Recap
"Complete with lots of humor, intimate romance and twists and turns aplenty, "Needs" is another example of the potential "Dollhouse" has in its serialized form."
Airlock Alpha Recap


"Needs" a 2.2/4 Rating/Share,a 1.46/5 Rating/Share in the 18-49 demographic and a 1.7/5 in the 25-54 demographic. The episode was watched by 2.865 million viewers Live, 3.436 million viewers Live+SD and 4.392 million viewers Live+7. The episode averaged a 1.17 Rating in the 18-49 demographic Live, a 1.46 Live+SD and a 1.96 Live+7. Overall "Needs" had 1.527 million DVR viewers. 34.8% of all viewings of "Needs" happened via DVR, that's the third greatest percentage of DVR viewing for broadcast TV shows of that week.

The half-hour breakdown showed 3.51 million viewers and 1.4/5 Rating/Share in the demo between 9:01 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., and 3.46 million viewers and a 1.4/5 between 9:30 p.m. and 10:00 p.m.

Promotional PhotosEdit

Notes & ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 Seidman, Robert (April 4, 2009). Friday Ratings: CBS wins with mostly repeats, Dollhouse looks done. TV by the Numbers.
  2. Ryan, Maureen (2009-04-20). Joss Whedon on 'Dollhouse's' renewal chances, that missing episode, 'Dr. Horrible' and more. The Watcher. Retrieved on 2009-04-21.

External LinksEdit

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