I like me some Joss Whedon. I consider Angel and Firefly two of the best shows of the last 15 years. I "grr, arg" along with the end credits every time. The man knows how to write dialog, how to make badasses of the doofiest of nerds, how to make sexpots of the most unlikeliest of actors. He is a ginger titan, a colossus bestriding the tube of boob. Joss Whedon knows how to make great television. If only he did it more consistently, and without all the accompanying bullshit ...
5He Will Slaughter Everything That Makes You Happy Inside
Firefly fans loved Wash. Who didn't love Wash? Joss rammed a tree trunk through his chest for no reason. Penny from Dr. Horrible might be the most innocent, sweet natured girl Whedon's ever written. She ends Dr. Horrible bleeding out with a chunk of shrapnel stuck in her body, Normandy Beach style. Why? There is only one real lesson in Whedonland, and it's that loving cool people is dangerous because someone's probably gonna shove a flaming rock into their skull.
In fact, this is the only way Whedon characters achieve growth. It's a recognized cliche amongst his fanbase: If someone makes you happy when you see them onscreen, grab your balls, because he's going to lacerate them heavily. Sometimes I don't mind a good nut-stabbing. I like The Wire, I like Battlestar Galactica. But sometimes I just wanna sit back and watch Doogie Howser sing songs about horsies into his webcam. It's at those times that I'd rather Joss Whedon not pop up like the "Toasty!" guy from Mortal Kombat and pulp my yambag with senseless death.