PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS A SPOILER-RICH ZONE

PLEASE NOTE: THIS IS A SPOILER-RICH ZONE. If your diet requires you to dine on television spoiler-free ... good luck with that.

REVIEW ARCHIVES

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Badly Dressed Superhero



Episode 1.07: The Bachelor Party. Original Airdate: 11/16/99


“Doyle receives a surprise visit from his wife, who wishes to end their marriage so that she may wed a demon.”











Daniel’s Thoughts:

  • Hey, it’s Cordelia’s first date on the show. And he’s kind of a hottie, in a Dawson's Creek CW kinda way.
  • Angel’s being all dad-like is cute.
  • Oh hey, it’s a picture of Buffy!
Not at all a professional headshot.

  • Vision! Vampire nest. Angel & Doyle are on the job.
  • Of course Cordelia’s hottie date is boring AF.
  • Punk vamps!!
  • Haha, Cordelia bites a vampire. And her boring hottie date runs off.
  • “Now I expect a guy to be rich and interesting – and it’s your fault!”
  • Cordelia calls Doyle a fixer-upper. Cause…he’s totally TV ugly I guess? Blah.
  • Ooh, Doyle has a surprise wife!
  • And it doesn’t faze Angel at all.
  • So Doyle’s wife has a new friend. He mistakes Angel for Doyle which isn’t as funny as the writers think it is. Again with Doyle not being as good looking as Angel which isn’t just subjective. Glenn Quinn is pretty. That’s just a fact.
  • So Doyle is mixed and his demon side didn’t present until he was 21. Which is pretty interesting.
  • This is the second time Carlos Jacott plays someone who appears human who turns out to be a demon. He played a similar role in the Buffy episode: "Anne".
  • “Ethno-demonologist.” That’s a thing!
  • “The Ritual Eating of the First husband’s brains” – it’s interesting they had that on the list despite all being surprised that Doyle was even invited. SHENANIGANS.
  • More surprising Doyle facts: He used to teach third grade.
  • Why are Richard’s brothers beating up Angel?
  • They’re all like, thanks for your sacrifice and Doyle consented but he totally didn’t. It is not informed consent.
  • I dunno. This whole thing seems forced. Richard says they haven’t performed this in a hundred years. And they’re supposed to be a peaceful demon sect. Then why would they consider doing this at all? And if it’s all innocent, why didn’t he tell his wife?
  • Harry’s the only one who makes sense: They don’t do the old rituals because they’re barbaric – but this is the most barbaric of all – killing another human be-demon. [Am now picturing human-bee-demons. Thank you for those nightmares. - Z]
  • “Who wants a wife whose knees only bend the one way.”
  • Vision: Buffy!

Zelda’s Thoughts:

  • Come on, Doyle. Anyone who watched Buffy knows that Angel likes to brood with a book, not go to a sports bar.
  • Cordelia’s going on a date with … some dude named Pierce, and the golddigger look isn’t great on her. (though her dress looks great)
  • I really do love the credits theme for this show.
  • Oooh this vamp nest is full of punk rock vamps with brightly dyed hair. They seem fun. I mean evil.
  • Wow, when the vamp grabs Cordelia, Pierce goes RUNNING.
  • And then, in a callback to, I wanna say “Prophecy Girl,” Cordelia bites the vamp.
  • And yay, Doyle to the rescue! Thanks Doyle!
  • “You’re so brave.” // “You think you could say that without so much shock in your voice?”
  • Aw, and Cordelia’s touched that he asked if she was okay immediately after. “That’s like, substance, right?”
  • Callback to dating Xander the fixer-upper.
  • And in a beautiful undermining of his heroism, Doyle is reliving it, all bravado and new bad puns.
  • And this is when we find out that Doyle’s first name is Francis. Well, his second name. Allen Francis Doyle. Also that he has a wife named Harry.
  • So many emotions playing across his face, such good work from Glenn Quinn.
  • I know Harry’s fiancé is named Richard, but I’m going to struggle so much to not call him Ken because … IT’S KEN FROM BUFFY.
  • Really, though, Harry should have come to Doyle to finalize the divorce more than a few days in advance of the wedding.
  • “Can I get a side of bland with that bland?” It’s true, Carlos Jacott is really good at serving up smiling bland (WITH EVIL UNDERNEATH)
  • I know Daniel already went into this, but I’ll second the ridiculousness of acting like Glenn Quinn isn’t attractive. They may dress him tackily, but he has a pretty pretty face with soulful expressions. He’s just shorter than David. They’re both pretty men. And he’s certainly prettier than Ken, not that we should actually dive into the value of physical beauty as any kind of moral or character value.
  • GASP Ken’s a demon. Honestly, why did Joss cast him as the same guy three times? Seeming fuddy duddy who’s actually a baddie? (we haven’t learned he’s a baddie yet, not all demons are baddies in this universe, but I’m looking ahead)
As Richard, Ken, and Dobson. Basically NEVER trust this face.

  • Oh wow, Harry’s an ethnodemonologist? What university offers degrees in that? Does she work with the Initiative?
  • And oh man, she wanted Doyle to accept his demon half. That wasn’t why they broke up. Or it was, but it was his inability to handle it, not hers. “Harry didn’t leave because of the demon in me. She left because of me.” And he signs the divorce papers.
  • Angel’s office has a copier? That’s not cheap!
  • Man, I hope he has insurance on the place for when it goes boom at the end of the season.
  • Ken to his family about Doyle: “He’s really very sweet. I think you’re all going to enjoy him.”
  • GASP they plan to eat Doyle’s brains GASP
  • Told you Ken was evil.
  • Cordelia’s blown away by what she learns of Doyle’s past, including the fact that he used to be a third grade teacher, and volunteered at the food bank. It is interesting to see how much has changed, how much he’s been damaged by his own self-loathing once he learned he was part-demon.
  • Also the show is working overtime to get Cordelia emotionally invested in Doyle in time to write him off. They probably intended a slower burn on all this.
  • We really should track the number of times Angel defenestrates. It’s happened twice this episode. The opening credits include a shot of a beautiful slow motion swan dive defenestration.
  • Wow, They moved quickly from Doyle giving his consent to INTO THE MAGIC BOX WITH YOU.
  • That needle BARELY touched him. How is that sufficient anesthesia?


  • Aaaaand they’re putting on lobster bibs.
  • And back at the bachelorette party, “Well they’re certainly not going to eat your ex-husband’s brains … For instance.” A+ delivery.
  • BLAM Angel busts open the pretty double doors, and that’s an iconic credits shot if ever there was one.


  • “You brought a vampire to my brother’s bachelor party?”
  • I wonder if Doyle’s face spines are spiky or squishy.
  • Aw man, Cordelia in defense of Doyle, unknowingly smashes up demon-faced Doyle, and Angel rushes to stop her because oops.
  • Harry’s more mad that Ken was going to start their marriage with deceit, rather than starting their marriage WITH MURDER AND BRAIN EATING.
  • Okay, she seems upset about both parts.
  • “Nice guys don’t always finish last.” // “You think I’m a nice guy?” // “I think it, I say it. It’s my way.” Iconic Cordelia moment.
  • GASP Doyle had a vision of Buffy in a fight! Luckily he saw her photo earlier so he knows who it is.
  • Ah, right, after this episode Angel runs off to snoop on Buffy’s Thanksgiving plans.


Crossfire!

Ken to his family about Doyle: “He’s really very sweet. I think you’re all going to enjoy him.”
D & Z:  *share a knowing look*


Favorite Lines:



Daniel: “I think it. I say it. It's my way.” – Cordelia
Zelda: “Well they’re certainly not going to eat your ex-husband’s brains … For instance.” – Aunt Martha







Arc/Continuity:

Generally Known TV Face: Kristin Dattilo, Carlos Jacott, Chris Tallman, Lauri Johnson
Whedonverse Hat Trick: Carlos Jacott (Richard Straley here, Ken in Buffy ep “Anne”; Lawrence Dobson in Firefly ep “Serenity”)
Buffy crossover: a black and white photo of Buffy tucked into Angel’s book


Stats:

Cordelia’s Hair – half-up in a clip, wavy curls
Dead Humans – 0
Dead Undeads – 2
Dead Flashbacks – 0
Dead Lawyers – 0
Doyle Has a Vision – 2
Lawyered Ex Machina – 0
Evil Reveal – 1 (Ken and his family want to eat Doyle’s brains)
Unevil Reveal – 0
Shenanigans Called – 1
Apocalypse Called – 0
Prophecy Called – 0

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

You Could Be a Rainbow and Not a Painbow

Episode 1.06: Sense and Sensitivity. Original Airdate: 11/09/99


“An imprisoned criminal uses his connections to target Kate for elimination.” [This is possibly the worst imdb plot description we’ve run into]



Zelda’s Thoughts:

  • Go Kate go! You chase down that criminal!
  • Dang, she kicked him in the spine.
  • And now she’s bantering Buffy-style about having difficulty expressing her emotions because also we’re setting up the theme for the episode.
  • Kate’s boss says that Little Tony (aka human big bad of the week) is gone, and he doesn’t know who can find him. Kate’s eyes say that she does.
  • Cut to Angel slicing up some gross demony thing and leaving Cordelia and Doyle to do the janitorial dismemberment of the remains.
  • Meanwhile, Cordy has dramatic irony on her side, bitcaing about Angel ignoring the people around him while she ignores Doyle getting throttled by a tentacle. Don’t worry, guys, he’ll be fine until spoiler.
  • This is a Tim Minear ep? But … he doesn’t kill any regulars in it.
  • Aw fuck, it’s Kate’s dad. He’s the fucking worst and I hate him.
  • It doesn’t help that the actor doesn’t bring a lot to the role.
  • Angel tracks down Little Tony and tells Kate, but it looks like he’s about to skip. So Angel breaks out your favorite gag and mine: Angel the doof in a Hawaiian shirt and straw hat. 

  • “That’s not the boat to Catalina? Are you sure?”
  • Oops Angel punchy kicky.
  • But Kate’s there before it gets worse.
  • Little Tony, now in captivity, proceeds to patronize and sexually harass Kate. How fun.
  • HEY IT’S LEE MERCER HI LEE MERCER.
  • Lee Mercer of Wolfram & Hart got a fax from Little Tony about taking out Kate.
  • Angel drinks a lot more coffee now that he’s a detective. Didn’t he say on Buffy that coffee makes him jittery?
  • Kate’s dad paid for her drink, and then pulls a full neg, sounding impressed before he says “Here’s hoping the bust doesn’t fall apart before you finish filing the paperwork,” to make sure she doesn’t feel good about herself for too long.
  • Papa Lockley “In my day, we didn’t need any damn sensitivity.” Kate’s face: I NOTICED DAD.
  • But yeah his whole vibe is proto are-you-triggered-snowflake, which probably explains why WE HATE HIM.
  • Kids, what’s the real lesson we learned from today? Don’t hold a magical talking stick or it’ll cause chaos in law enforcement.
  • I mean yeah this sensitivity counselor is evil, but it’s also true that Kate’s got a lot of defensive shells up because of how shitty her dad is.
  • Aw, Kate lowkey asks Angel out. But also oops she’s already under the influence of the magic stick with “He’s really acting out, isn’t he? … I’m just saying that he must be in some kind of pain to strike out at others in that way.”
  • Gasp! W&H got the sensitivity counselor into the precinct, and his office is full of MYSTICAL THINGS OF MAGIC THAT GLOW.
  • HEYO Kate just admitted to picturing Angel in his underwear.
  • Kate’s father continues to be The Worst.
  • And poor Kate, the only woman in the room, the only one not in a collared shirt, and under the influence of the magic stick, gives an emotional toast to her awful father at his retirement party. “After mom died, you stopped, you know. It was like you couldn’t stand the sight of me … But big girls don’t cry, right? … You couldn’t even tell a scared little girl a beautiful lie.”
  • And all the other cops are talking their feelings. But see the problem is, a lot of cop feelings seem to be … anger. And the only way they know to express that anger is in violence. So, fighty cry fight.
  • Kate, to Angel: “I see such an old soul.” Doyle: “He gets that a lot.”
  • Welp, Kate outs Doyle’s crush on Cordelia.
  • Don’t worry, the hijinks music tells us that Kate’s state should be read as a funny thing, and not deeply worrying.
  • Angel’s feeling punky. When Sensitivity Alan asks what his parents were like, he says “My parents were great. Tasted a lot like chicken.”
  • Meanwhile, one of the cops has decided it’s not right to imprison criminals, so he unlocks all the cells. This’ll be fun. And they all jump the cop.
  • Question: is there a large presence of the Italian mafia in  LA? Am I stereotyping for assuming they’re more east coast based?
  • Oops, Angel got whacked with the emostick and now he’s hugging Cordoyle. You don’t have to worry about that ship name for long, folks. 


  • “There’s a stick that talks?” “Cordelia, do you have any idea just how precious you are?”
  • “You both withdraw when I go vamp, I feel you judge me.” Snerk. He’s fun like this.
  • Cop reads a poem about his bad feels to a prisoner: “I saw a leaf and I did cry.” That is … not a good poem.
  • It’s too bad the idea of cops regretting violence is played for laughs, especially in LA.
  • Nice to see that even when they’re in touch with their emotions, Angel and Kate are both still good at the fighting. And then they hug it out.
  • Welp, W&H cuts ties with Little Tony after he went gun-happy in the precinct. But they’re also watching the cctv footage of Angel and helllllo new person crushing on Angel.
  • Hey, Kate’s dad comes in to confront Kate about last night. And he advocates “it didn’t happen” and shut down those emotions and I hate him I hate him I hate him.
  • I wonder what would have happened if Kate had been on the show longer than she is. Like, would they have gone there with an attempted relationship with Angel? Or was the plan always to introduce Darla to fuck things up?
  • Um, spoilers?

Daniel’s Thoughts:

  • Guy running in the mean, lonely streets of LA. Detective Kate follows in hot pursuit. Kicks ass, but takes no names.
  • Kate’s a hardball, no nonsense cop. Apparently she’s been in the interrogation room for hours. Her male co-workers don’t seem to appreciate her…
  • Meanwhile Angel is killing a big lizard octopus monster. Cordelia & Doyle are left to clean up the mess.
  • “JarJar is getting his own talk show…” What?
  • “It’s like you don’t have a pulse.” “I don’t.”
  • Kate has a dad. And this is where alllll her insecurities come from.
  • Yeah, he’s a bit of a bastard.
  • Angel found the mob guy for Kate. He wasn’t going to intervene…but
  • Where did Angel even get this outfit?
  • Angel says he got out of the car because the guy was getting away but… I mean he wasn’t? The cops got their in time before the boat even got to shore.
  • I love these little Wolfram & Hart interjections… They’re the big bad but we don’t really know that yet.
  • Kate’s Dad “In my day, we didn’t need any sensitivity.”  Me:



  • Doyle “They got a thug discount rate?” Yeah Doyle, just insult the guy who is openly giving you information.
  • Kate’s being all sensitive. What a change of character. I wonder if there’s a supernatural explanation…DUN DUN DUN
  • And Kate’s dad continues to act like a prick at his retirement party.
  • Kate gets all deep in her speech. This might be the spell talking but there’s definitely truth in it.
  • All these tough cop guys are throwing out therapy terms and crying and I guess it’s supposed to be funny.
  • Rohm’s doing some great work in this episode, though – the range of emotions.
  • “My parents were great. Tastes a lot like chicken.” Wow, Angel. Is murdering your parents really something you want to joke about?
  • I mean….what’s the message of this episode? If cops are more sensitive, things would be chaos? So they should continue to be hard-nosed brutal assholes?
  • Cordelia does that Grr thing again and it’s pretty cute.
  • Heh, everyone’s all embarrassed now that the spell wore off.
  • Everyone’s back to their closed off selves now. So, Ok. We've learned nothing.
  • And nothing’s changed with Kate’s dad. Still a bastard.


Favorite Lines:
Zelda: “You both withdraw when I go vamp, I feel you judge me.” – Angel
Daniel“It’s like you don’t have a pulse.” “I don’t.” -Cordelia/Angel

Arc/Continuity:
First Appearance: Trevor Lockley, Lee Mercer
Recurring: Detective Kate Lockley
Generally Known TV Face: Alex Skuby, Steve Schirripa
Whedonverse Hat Trick: Alex Skuby (Harlan here; Vincent in Buffy ep “Bad Girls”), Kevin Will (Heath here; Officer in Firefly ep “The Train Job”; Gerry in Dollhouse ep “Gray Hour”)
Angel’s Alias: Herb Saunders

Stats:
Cordelia’s Hair – loose tumbling curls
Dead Humans – 1
Dead Undeads – 1
Dead Flashbacks – 0
Dead Lawyers – 0
Doyle/Cordelia Has a Vision – 0
Lawyered Ex Machina – 1
Evil Reveal – 1
Unevil Reveal – 0
Shenanigans Called – 0
Apocalypse Called – 0
Prophecy Called – 0

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Violets and Aspercreme


Episode 1.05: Rm w/a Vu. Original Airdate: 11/02/99



“Cordelia falls in love with a rent-controlled apartment that turns out to be haunted, and a demon comes to collect on Doyle’s loans.”









Daniel’s Thoughts:

  • Aww bad Cordelia acting.  
  • Angel’s voicemail has “we help the hopeless” 
  • Cordy not wanting to socialize with her old friends because she doesn’t want to talk about her life – relatable. 
  • Angel knows a lot about Cordelia back in HS.  They didn’t hang out that much. 
  • Aww, Cordelia’s phonebook.  I used to have something similar, ya know, before smartphones. 
  • Oh man, Doyle is referencing that ‘priceless’ ad which if it were out today would have been such a social media meme. 
  • Cordelia needs to run from her apartment. Doyle needs to run from his.  Angel is naked.  Priceless. 
  • “Do you have mousse?  Of course you do.” – Cordelia.  Do people still mousse??  I moussed once upon a time which is weird since my hair is already very big. 
  • Angel, close your damn robe 
  • I love when Angel is persnickety. “And the reason there is a wet towel on my leather chair?”  He’s so the Monica of this show.  Cordelia’s Rachel.  Doyle’s definitely Ross. [I'm Phoebe! - Lorne]
  • I love Cordelia’s scorched diploma and the reason we all know behind it. 
  • Cordelia, apartment shopping: The apartments here are just as bad NYC hunting. Maybe worse.  More cults. 
  • Cordelia wants to take out a wall.  Um, you have to own the place to do that.  You can’t just take down a wall when you’re renting.  I mean, I know this is foreshadowing but still. 
  • Oooh, spooky wall.  Very Nightmare on Elm Street.


  • Ok, so Cordy’s apartment is haunted. And whomever is haunting her is a perv going through her bras and stuff. 
  • Doyle always seems uplit. 
  • I don’t think Doyle’s crush on Cordelia is charming at all.  So far, it really only seems to be looks based. 
  • Mirror scare!  Beth Grant. Zelda, “She’s in everything.” Yeah. 
  • SHENANIGANS: HOW DID HE GET THERE
So. Much. Sun.

  • She’s currently hiding the ghost and I’m not sure why. I know she wants them to think she’s doing ok, but this is what the team does.  They can get rid of ghosts. 
  • Angel doesn’t know where to get all the ingredients for a spell. Um, just ask Anya and Giles.  But also, there’re no magic shop in LA?   
  • Oh wow, the ghost is impersonating Angel’s voice.  How odd.  Well I guess Beetlejuice could do it.  But like, she can use the phone, too? 
  • Hey, detective Kate!  Oh man, Kate’s got it bad….she gets all weird when Angel leans over her. 
  • But at least they figure out what happened sorta.  Or at least they know about Dennis…they just don’t exactly what happened. 
  • Real poltergeist action now, things blowing all over the place. 
  • Uh oh.  It’s so inconvenient when you’re trying to get out of a haunted apartment and demon mobsters are after you. 
  • “You stupid little bitch.”  “I’m a bitch…”  I love that this is what motivates her.  YES, I’m bitch. So screw you.  
  • “Cry-Buffy!” 
  • Uh oh, Cordy is possessed. 
  • She Cask of Amontillado’d her son.  Wow, what a whack job. 
  • So the demons who were sent after Doyle are dead…I’m sure there will be others. 
  • Cordy’s apartment is really nice.  She’s pretty lucky….I mean, despite almost dying for it. 
  • We looked up the name Aura, the girl from Sunnydale who calls Cordelia. Turns out Aura was in the first episode of Buffy.  She’s the girl who found the dead guy in her locker – and we never hear from her again.  It’s interesting that this is who Jane Espensen decided to bring back…even as a voice over.  IMDB doesn’t have the name of the actress playing the voiceover in this episode.


 Zelda’s Thoughts:

  • I remember Jane Espenson (this episode’s writer) saying that writers got a bonus if they create a recurring character, when that character repeats. She created Phantom Dennis, but since his subsequent appearances are, you know, blinvisible ones, it doesn’t count for her. WELL, IT COUNTS FOR US, JANE.
  • Doyle is very sweet and agreeable in the face of Cordelia so far not being a very good actor … and also not being a very good Angel Investigations employee, as the ringing phone goes to the answering machine REMEMBER ANSWERING MACHINES.
  • Apparently it was someone named Aura. Did we ever meet an Aura? (Yes, she had the extreme dead guy stuffed in her locker in the pilot)
  • Angel explains the Cordettes at Sunnydale High, and I’d raise an eyebrow but he knew about the dance that one time because he lurks, so I’ll allow it.
  • Anyway, Cordelia’s apartment spews brown water and dim lighting and the door sticks and HEY A ROACH ON THE TV and jesus christ so many on the carpet time to burn the place to the ground.
  • Gasp! A random demon in Doyle’s apartment! With pretty smooth skin and stylish horns.

  • Ah, this is the one collecting on Doyle’s loans that the imdb summary foretold.
  • Angel listens to Ode to Joy in the shower. 'kay.
  • Man, season one really leans into Angel, wet and shirtless. Not that we’re complaining. 


  • Cordelia thinks roaches have antlers.
  • I’m really glad I’m watching this episode after I no longer live in an apartment building with a roach problem.
  • Cordelia tells Angel once she gets a new place he’s “completely invited over,” and thanks for that little line plant.
  • I like the touch of Cordelia checking her reflection in the kettle because he has no mirrors … though don’t most bathrooms come with a mirror?
  • Doyle is quietly freaking out because he walked into Angel’s basement apartment and Cordelia’s in a robe, she got peanut butter in the bed, and Angel’s wearing boxers and a fairly porny red robe.
  • Doyle refers to Angel’s overhanging forehead, and Angel self-consciously touches his brow, and I laugh forever.
  • Wow, Cordelia is scraping up Angel’s linoleum tile, and putting her high school trophies on his mantle.
  • Aw, nice touch, her high school diploma is a bit scorchy.
  • Heh, Angel lied to Doyle that there’s a big guy to see him so he can make him come clean about what or whom he’s hiding from.
  • “It’s a system of checks and balances.” // “And some of your checks didn’t balance.”
  • Angel offers a quid pro quo: Angel helps Doyle with his debt, Doyle helps Angel with his Cordelia roommate.
  • Sounds fair to me.
  • Wow, one of the places she looks at is basically a cult, how fun.
  • Ugh, creepo super hitting on Cordelia gross gross gross.
  • Question: when you apartment hunt, are all the places pre-furnished? The only time I’ve seen furnished places was when I was looking to purchase; all the rentals were empty. But the ones Cordelia looks at have furniture. And dang, does the actual pretty apartment she chooses have good furnishings.
  • “First thing: hire someone to take out that wall.” Cordelia, that wall has a face inside it and does not want to be removed. Just … fair warning.
  • It’s nice to see how happy she is, though. It’s a nice color on her, the bouncy planning joy.
  • I don’t get the demon referring to Angel the vampire helping some demon half-breed … vampires are half-breeds too, aren’t they? That’s certainly the ethos in the upcoming Hero ep. And according to Anya, the only real demons are giant Mayor Snakes.
  • Wow, Cordelia was able to move in right away? Jealous.
  • Except for the ghosts messing with her drawers and radio. Less jealous of that.
  • Also hey remember radios?
  • Oooh nice touch with the boiling glass of water.
  • “I’m from Sunnydale, you’re not scaring me, you know!” Aw but she is scared. Poor Cordy.
  • And with morning, the bed crashes back down to the floor. Yay?
  • Hey, Beth Grant is our ghost! She’s in all the things! Sometimes she doubts our commitment to Sparkle Motion.
Told ya.

  • “You know what, I get it. You're a ghost. You're dead. Big accomplishment! Move on! You see a light anywhere, go towards it, okay?”
  • Angel brought Cordelia the tiniest cactus as a housewarming.


  • Aw, Cordelia’s in denial about her haunted home. But the wall is bleeding the word die. “I am not giving up this apartment.” // “It’s haunted.” // “It’s rent controlled!”
  • Aw, Angel tells her it’s just a place and she’s more than that and she says “how, how am I more than that?”
  • Oh man, she sees it as a punishment for how she was kind of a bitca in high school, and the idea of the nice apartment as some kind of reward and end of punishment.
  • OH RIGHT I FORGOT. Ghost Mom pretended to be Angel to lure Cordelia back to the apartment. Sneaky sneaky!
  • AND DAVID BOREANAZ AND HIS VOICE WERE COMPLICIT.
  • “Too bad you wouldn’t leave my son alone.” And it actually reads two ways. One, she’s displacing her rage against her son’s fiancee onto Cordelia, but also if Cordelia takes out that wall, she’ll find Dennis’s corpse.
  • Thanks for the backstory help, Detective Kate! Your hair looks great.
  • And Angel’s hunch pays off, there’s a history of suicides in the apartment.
  • And don’t think we didn’t see that TENSION as Angel leaned over Kate’s shoulder.
  • “Angel Investigations. We Hope You’re Helpless.” Oh Doyle. Oh Doyle Doyle Doyle.
  • Woof, she’s got a cord around Cordelia’s neck and she’s slowly asphyxiating. But at least Angel and Doyle are here in time!
  • Oh man, poor Cordelia’s so scared and shattered. Charisma’s doing great work this episode.
  • Heh, in all the chaos a book absolutely knocks Angel on the head but he shakes it off. I wonder if that was supposed to happen.
  • Oh, in perfect timing, collector demon came back with two friends, one of whom looks human. Mama Ghost is mad but demon says “Ignore her, it's just a ghost.”
  • And she’s so annoyed they broke one of the tiles on the fireplace.
  • Season One isn’t the strongest, but this is a pretty great episode, and this chaos exorcism slash battle is awesome.
  • And then this wonderful moment, when the ghost calls Cordelia a bitch, and Cordelia remembers, “I am a bitch. I’m not a sniveling whiny little cry-Buffy. I’m the nastiest girl in Sunnydale history. I take crap from no one.”
  • Eesh, Cordelia’s line about the ghost being translucent, when she’s super not tells me that they waaaaaaaaaaaanted her to be more see-through and didn’t have the budget for it. Which explains the makeup, which here looks caked on but would probably look better under a translucent filter.
  • Wow, it’s really damn cold, that Mama Ghost Amontilladoed her own son so he wouldn’t get married. (I know Daniel already made this joke above, but I love the fact that we both verbed the title of that story that I'M KEEPING IT).
  • Cordelia’s apartment has a big round arching window, and aw Buffy design flashbacks.
  • Heh, now that Dennis was freed from the wall, he’s having fun being a pranky roomie to Cordelia.

Crossfire!
Cordelia: How come Patrick Swayze is never dead when you need him?

D & Z: *clutch their hearts in dismay*


Favorite Lines:
Daniel: Do you have mousse? Of course you do. - Cordelia
Zelda: I'm a bitch ... I'm not a sniveling whiny little cry-Buffy. I'm the nastiest girl in Sunnydale history. I take crap from no one. - Cordelia

Arc/Continuity:
First Appearance: Phantom Dennis
Recurring: Detective Kate Lockley, We Help the Hopeless
Generally Known TV Face: Beth Grant
Buffy Crossover: Aura (uncredited: voice only)


Stats:
Cordelia’s Hair – blown straight, and tangled by ghosties
Dead Humans – 0
Dead Undeads – 3
Dead Flashbacks – 2
Dead Lawyers – 0
Doyle/Cordelia Has a Vision – 0
Lawyered Ex Machina – 0
Evil Reveal – 0
Unevil Reveal – 1 (Dennis didn't kill his mom)
Shenanigans Called – 1
Apocalypse Called – 0
Prophecy Called – 0

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

We Help The Hopeless

ats104_i_fall_to_pieces_01063.jpgEpisode 1.04: I Fall to Pieces. Original Airdate: 10.26.99


“Angel aids a woman being stalked by a deranged surgeon who is literally coming apart.”



Zelda’s Thoughts:

  • Banter bicker bills and all so we can have a Doyle vision and Cordelia pulls out the phone book to tell Angel where to go. Because this is still the 90s so phone book.
  • And as he swoops out majestically with long black coat flowing, Doyle concedes to Cordy, “Maybe I'm a little attracted.” Everyone’s a Little Bit Gay, Doyle.
  • Our client of the week, Melissa, is popping pills but why? Who is Ronald and why is his flower gift scaring her? (har har, we know the reason, but hey let’s play along)
  • Oh Angel found her. Good job!
  • Wow did we not need Cordelia using the word r*tard pejoratively wow did we not need that.
  • And back to our creepiness, Andy Umberger changed Melissa’s ATM PIN and like wtf.
  • It’s striking me how many of our cases so far have been these awful predatory men who treat women like belongings. Russell in the Pilot, Lenny and Rachel last episode (Lonely Heart was an equal opportunity predator), and now creepo Ronald, stalking his former patient and trying to control her every move. I wish I could say we’ll have less of this as the show goes on, but why kid ourselves.
  • It’s just. I’m tired. I’m tired of this being the world.
  • Angel: He sees her when he is nowhere around. // Me: He knows when she’s awake, he knows when she’s been bad or good
  • And at last the reveal: Creepy Dr. Ronald can detatch body parts at will and send them floating around, and his eyeball is watching Melissa undress.
  • Doyle, re: bungee jumping, “Oh I've always meant to do that but I intensely don’t want to.”
  • Melissa also has a picture of a doggo on her desk and I want to know why this doggo isn’t in her apartment, chasing down roving body parts and chewing them up like they’re toys.
  • Wow, W&H filed a restraining order in defense of creepy Dr. Ronald, they are GREAT
  • Kate reminds us “He took her power away and no one can get it back for her but her.” Okay psychologically yes, but we can still help take the creepo out of her life, yes?
  • Ewwww, Angel’s in Dr Creepy’s office and he has a framed photo of Melissa on his desk. And he’s claiming she’s his fiancée.
  • And a very helpful book for us about the pseudoscience behind his special power.
  • So does he count as a human or a not-human, for when we kill him? A human who acquired special skilly powers?
  • Cordelia, posing as a journalist, “So he’s good at the cutting and the sewing. He ever strike you as a big dangerous creep?” Cordy at the forefront of the #MeToo movement.
  • “Did you steal this book?” // “Yeah.” // “Good.” *snort*
  • Gasp! Disembodied hands! As played by noted disembodied hand actor Christopher Hart.


  • And those hands are creeping below Melissa’s covers to do naughty things.
  • Aaaaaand now they’re throttling a cop.
  • And Dr. Creepy has seen Angel with Melissa. Wuh oh.
  • Doyle: “At least it was just his hands down there.” Hate to break it to you, Doyle, but hands can rape a body as much as what you’re thinking.
  • Dr. Creepy shot a poison dart at Angel and he may be currently incapacitated, but that can’t kill our vampire, now can it?
  • Angel’s apartment is effing massive. If I were Cordelia with her tiny place, I’d be angling the “need a roommate?” line right about now.
  • I’m gonna miss Glenn Quinn when he’s gone. It’s really such a damn shame.
  • And Melissa gets the moment Kate said she needed, taking back her power from Ronald (before Angel disassembles him). And really, he wouldn’t have fallen so completely to pieces without her having said all that.
  • Oh, I guess Ronald isn’t technically dead. Just separated into boxes buried all over the place, much like our old smurfy friend The Judge.
  • “You guys go ahead, I think I’ll stay here and not burst into flames.”
  • The plant Melissa gives Angel, is it the same one that gets destroyed by The First later? I’ll try to remember to pay attention. 


Daniel’s Thoughts:


  • Doyle’s kind of a douche.  I mean he’s supposed to be a lovable whatever, but calling Cordelia “Princess”, telling her she doesn’t need “much in the way of clothes.”  It’s pretty gross.  Another Xander nice-guy.  At least Glenn Quinn is more charming.
  • Doyle’s visions suck, too.
  • Oh man, the dramatic coat thing Angel does. 
  • I like that Doyle admits he’s at least a little attracted to Angel.
  • The damsel of the week looks familiar but IMDB didn’t tell me anything.  She also stopped working after 2003.  A lot of good 90s actresses I look up stop working in the 2000s.  It’s very sad.  I mean, I’m hoping it was her choice but…
  • The thing about Cordelia saying the R word…I mean, I’m absolutely stunned now – but back then?  Who knows if I even gave it a second thought.  I most likely didn’t.  It’s hard sometimes to go back and watch this shit.  Same with Spike being casually homophobic in the last episode.  I probably dismissed that, too. [Same to both. I didn't even clock it back then and now it's such a cringe of why. - Z]
  • Meanwhile , our damsel of the week – Melissa – is being stalked by our villain of the week.  That’s…how it works.
  • “We help the hopeless.”  Cordelia’s first time saying that!
  • Melissa’s British accent is coming out a bit.
  • “It’s terrible” “We're going to take care of that” “No, I mean the coffee.” 
  • Fun with visual effects!  Surgeon guy can take out his eye…and it can travel on his own, I guess.
  • Hey, Kate’s back.  She uncomfortably asks if Angel is there to ask for a favor or a date.  Someone’s thirsty.
  • I like these subtle references to the law firm Wolfram & Hart – we don’t know yet that they’ll be a major part of this show.
  • I looked up Elisabeth Rohm to see what she’s been up to.  I remember her guesting on Jane the Virgin but it’s nice to see her IMDb page filled with upcoming projects including Bombshell.
  • Angel’s pretty good with the undercover.  He’s fast thinking.  He gets doctor creepy to admit things about Melissa.
  • He’s not just a stalker, but a delusional stalker….which I guess is kinda redundant.
  • Cordelia’s not bad with the undercover either. She slips up a bunch but uses it to her advantage.
  • Angel says “All’s he sees.”  All’s. I am judging him.
  • Zelda and I are noticing that a lot of the sets are looking like the future Hyperion.
  • The guy who plays the hands also played Thing in The Addams Family.
  • Oh man, it’s so creepy.
  • “You should listen to him, Melissa.  He knows what he’s talking about.  He’s stalked plenty of…books on the subject.”
  • I mean as far as supervillain powers goes, it’s not great?  Just kinda creepy.
  • Ha, the shot of his ear falling off.  Well done.
  • “I didn’t do it for the money.”  Come on, Angel.  People gotta eat.  And by people, I mean your employees.
  

Crossfire!
Cop: Lady, I can't help you if you don't tell me what's wrong!
Z: Don’t yell at the victim!
D: Yes, let her talk! Jesus!

Favorite Lines:
Z:  “So he’s good at the cutting and the sewing. He ever strike you as a big dangerous creep?” - Cordelia
D: "You should listen to him, Melissa. He knows what he’s talking about. He’s stalked plenty of … books on the subject". - Cordelia

Arc/Continuity:
First Appearance: “We help the hopeless”
Recurring: Detective Kate Lockley
Generally Known TV Face: Brent Sexton, Andy Umberger
NOTED HAND ACTOR: Christopher Hart 
Whedonverse Hat Trick: Andy Umberger (D’Hoffryn on Buffy, Dortmunder Captain on Firefly)
Angel’s Alias: Mr. Jensen, husband of woman with an ocular tumor
Cordelia’s Alias: journalist for Journal of Diagnostic Orthoped ... Et Cetera., Jensen International Holdings receptionist


Stats:
Cordelia’s Hair – loosely straight, high ponytail with flyaways, loose bun with headband
Dead Humans – 1
Dead Undeads – 0
Dead Flashbacks – 0
Dead Lawyers – 0
Doyle/Cordelia Has a Vision – 1
Lawyered Ex Machina – 1 (Dr. Roland's restraining order)
Evil Reveal – 0
Unevil Reveal – 0
Shenanigans Called – 0
Apocalypse Called – 0
Prophecy Called – 0