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Seraphim Lazarev
Seraphim Lazarev


After having attended meetings with companies discussing the prospect of producing something for the Internet and faced with negative feedback on his ideas, he realized that as long as the strike was still in progress, acquiring corporate funding was an unlikely prospect.[135] Whedon himself funded the project investing just over $200,000[137] and earned more from it than he did directing The Avengers.[141] He enjoyed the independence he gained from Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog as it provided him the freedom to include content without the expectancy of lessening it on behalf of the runtime.[138] He and Jed composed the music, parts of which were influenced by Stephen Sondheim.[142]


Early in his career, Whedon sold two spec scripts that were not produced, Suspension and Afterlife. He sold Suspension for $750,000, with an additional $250,000 if production had commenced.[245] In September 2014, Empire suggested the script was being made, with Liam Neeson attached to the project.[246] In 1994, he sold Afterlife for $1.5 million, with an additional $500,000 if production had commenced. In 2000, Andy Tennant was in talks to direct and rewrite.[247] In Afterlife there were precursors to themes Whedon would later explore in Dollhouse. The script was about Daniel Hoffstetter, a government scientist, who awakes after dying to discover his mind has been imprinted on a mind-wiped body.[248]

The sequel to Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog has been shelved on multiple occasions. In 2009, Whedon remarked upon the possibility of presenting it in the form of another miniseries or a feature film.[262] The script was planned to be written in summer 2012 and the principal photography to take place the following year.[263][264] However, production was delayed because of his commitment to projects at Marvel Studios.[265]

Thematically, Whedon's work often explores perspectives on existentialism,[270] anti-authoritarianism,[70] free will,[271] power,[29] powerlessness, sexuality,[272] adulthood, sacrifice, atheism, misogyny and feminism.[273][274][275][276] His projects usually revolve around an ensemble of protagonists,[277][278] primarily focused on a loner hero who ends up working with others to accomplish a goal.[279] He says of the recurring aspects of community, "Everything I write tends to turn into a superhero team, even if I didn't mean for it to. I always start off wanting to be solitary, because a) it's simpler, and b) that isolation is something that I relate to as a storyteller. And then no matter what, I always end up with a team".[280] Examining a typical motif, he says, "I tend to write about people who are helpless or out of control who then regain or retake control".[273]

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Naked Lunch may not be polyphonic, but it is still subversive in its refusal to reconcile or mask its own schizophrenic form. This schizophrenia is less baffling when we recreate "the concrete social context of discourse [. . .] as the force that determines its entire stylistic structure" (Bakhtin, "Discourse" 300). The schizophrenic form and content of Naked Lunch, which attacks and yet employs homophobic tropes of horror, is a profound and ultimately moving representation of Burroughs's own fight to the death against the Word. By contrasting "The Word" with "this book" (207), Burroughs demonstrates the painful necessity of subverting authoritarian discourse from within, of using monstrosity against itself. Possessed by the Word, and by its demonic power to script individual identity, the narrator must exclaim, only half ironically, "Gentle reader, I fain would spare you this, but my pen hath its will like the Ancient Mariner" (37).14 On the one hand, the narrator's voice is that of the "hypnotic bard, Coleridge's Ancient Mariner" (Hilfer 254). But on the other hand, for Burroughs the Ancient Mariner is actually the enemy, the carrier of the Word, the Wise Man who converts "live orgones into dead bullshit" (105): "Are we never to be free of this grey-beard loon lurking on every mountain top in Tibet, subject to drag himself out of a hut in the Amazon, waylay one in the Bowery?" (105). Burroughs, speaking through the persona of William Lee, embodies the masculine hero-warrior who "will quell the Loch Ness Monster" (205) with authority and yet, at the same time, will give up that authority by unlocking his word horde (208). He is, in a way, the Wise Man who has abdicated.15 041b061a72


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