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


Monday, January 25, 2021

Why Are They Afraid of Xena?

Episode 2.20: Over the Rainbow. Original Airdate: 5.08.01

“Angel and his friends travel to [Lorne's] home world to look for Cordelia.”

Zelda’s Thoughts:
  • Wheeeeeeee Pylea time! Fred time! Let’s go!
  • Cordelia may be stranded in a new dimension but she looks pretty bamf in her denim jumpsuit thingy.
  • Aw, she clicks her stylish yet affordable boot heels together three times, in case it might send her home. No such luck.
  • Also not good luck? She’s being chased by some kinda hellbeast.
  • We haven’t talked about it in a while but the Angel theme music is so pretty.
  • Meanwhile, back in our dimension, Lorne is lightly panicking about where Cordelia is. “God, I wish I could get drunk.”
  • Angel jumps into action, ready to open another portal. Wes wants them to take a breath and make a plan before they dive in. Angel: “It’s Cordy.” Wes nods and lets him read from the book.
  • But it doesn’t work because the portal onstage is all used up. They need a new hotspot.
  • And Lorne advises them that it’s not good to jump into his world looking like a human … because hey in Pylea humans are called cows and are enslaved.
  • Also the dude who ropes in Cordelia so he can sell her at market is totally a Hey It’s That Guy that I mostly know from Mrs. Doubtfire.
William Newman

  • Lorne is so jittery about the prospect of going back to Pylea and I get that Angel and Wes are super angry and worried about Cordelia, but they’re really not giving much empathy to the fact that this is clearly a whole trauma thing for Lorne.
  • Angel: “Who opened the portal?” // Lorne: “Gift horse.  (holds up hand as horse puppet) Mouth. (opens hand, then pointedly looks away)”
  • “All my life, I thought I was crazy. That I had ghosts in my head or something. Simply because I could hear music. Of course I didn’t know it was music. All I knew is that it was something beautiful and painful and right. And I was the only one who could hear it.”
  • And then Gunn arrives, quiet and a bit shattered over George’s death and his own failure. When they try to brief him on going after Cordy, he says “I’m not going … Last night I lost one of my crew. I should have been there, but … I’m sorry, Wes said the trip was one way, and I … I can’t.”
  • Lorne also doesn’t plan to go, but he’ll try to help them find a new hotspot to open up a new portal.
  • Wes: “Gunn does have responsibilities … ties … people to take care of.” // Angel: “So do I.”
  • Aw man, they took Cordy’s stylish yet affordable boots.
  • Cordelia, arguing that you can’t just barter a human being, pointing out that she’s an American and she has rights, has forgotten a huuuuuuuuuge chunk of American history.
  • But hey! As Cordy follows her new slaveowner home, we see Fred! Hi Fred!
  • Lorne goes to visit a psychic friend of his named Aggie and it’s totally the same actress who played Aura in the Buffy pilot and while it would be my headcanon that it’s the same character, who moved to LA and started this phone psychic career, don’t you think Aura would be a more on-the-nose name for a psychic?
  • Anyway she talks him into going with the gang back to Pylea to get proper closure.
  • Meanwhile, back at the Hyperion ranch, Gavin Park is here! Hi Gavin Park! They’re there to “appraise” the hotel, planning to purchase it out from under Angel.
  • Someone needs to tell Gavin this isn’t the cool way to lawyer ex machina Angel. And by someone I mean Lilah.
  • Fred comes to find Cordy, warning her not to take the collar off cuz it’ll slightly kill her. And poor Fred is so traumatized that she’s lost her hold on reality. “I was born here. I mean, not really, I just … sometimes I think I was. I mean, I don’t think it was my thought.”
  • “I’m not crazy. Well, crazy, but I’m not wrong.”
  • Damn, she’s super broken.
  • Angel’s recording a farewell message on someone’s voicemail, in case they don’t return from Pylea. But we don’t know who he sent it to. Do we presume Buffy? I guess we presume Buffy. Or maybe Gunn. In any event, Buffy’s on the run from Glory right now so she’s a little busy.
  • Dang, even in Pylea Cordy has visions. This-dimension-specific visions.
  • “Cursed! My cow is cursed!” Welp. Is it time to throw her in a lake and see if she floats?
  • And as the gang prepares to drive Angel’s car through a portal, Gunn shows up (how did he know how to find them? Wait NO HOW DID HE KNOW. Angel didn’t know til they pulled up the car. And this is before Find My Phone. I love that Gunn showed up in time, but shenanigans). “Got a phone message. Sounded like the captain of the Titanic getting ready to go down with the ship.”
  • So … that means no one knows where they’re going now. Cool. Cool. Cool cool cool. Oh well, like I said, Buffy’s pretty busy trying to stop All The Portals from opening.
  • Oh Aggie. Aggie-not-Aura knows, I guess?
  • All four literally fasten their seatbelts before driving in and that means they weren’t fastened on the drive over!!!!! Come on, people.
  • Oops the book got left behind when they drove through.
  • And luckily for Angel, the two suns of Pylea are not setting on Angel on fire.
  •  “Can everyone just notice how much fire I’m not on?”
  • David runs so dorkily excited to gather branches “in that patch of sun” 

  • So … Lorne had advised them not to show up in Pylea looking all human and they’re here looking all human and I feel like they could have at least done some kind of makeup disguise.
  • Anyway, Cordy’s been brought before the Constable who seized Fred earlier, and they identify her visions as the curse of sight.
  • Wes says “Yes, we’re all heartily aware that you’re not on fire. Shall we go?” and I love the amused and tolerant way he says it. You just know Angel has been babbling about it this whole time.
  • Also Wes logics that the book couldn’t travel to Pylea because it opens portals from the home dimension, and that means they probably need a new book to portal their way home.
  • So we never get to see what kind of terrible tests they ran on Cordy, but she’s curled up on the floor in tears, so that’s fucking awful.
  • Anyway our fearless heroes who are here to rescue Cordelia are now surrounded by hostile folk with weapons.
  • Gunn, “I take the twenty on the left, you take the fifty on the right.” // Angel: “Okay.”
  • Oh man, I’d forgotten the line in the series finale is a callback to this moment.
  • And then we get one of those ironic cuts from Wes, wielding a sword of some sort and saying “I think we’re winning” to the four of them on their knees, tied up.
  • Gunn, who’s too used to people in authority positions treating him like he’s nothing, starts mouthing off and it would be great but each smartass remark earns him another punch.
  • And now they’re in a jail cell, but Angel’s enhanced vampire eardrums means he can hear the guards talking about Cordy.
  • I would just like to point out that Angel and Wes are managing to still look cool with their ankles shackled but that Wes is literally hopping from foot to foot because Alexis loves to clown.
  • It’s interesting that here we have a species who can all read auras all over the place (we learned last episode that it’s not just Lorne). So why are they all het up about Cordy’s visions? It … doesn’t make a lot of sense to me? Like … it seems like in this world everyone’s a little bit psychic sometimes?
  • Anyway, they bring our four boys to their royal highness … who is Cordelia.
  • So … while I’m not saying I don’t enjoy Queen C, I don’t really get why they would do that with a species they keep calling a cow, a beast of burden.
  • Also she’s in a spangly bikini top and I think even this is a foil moment for her commercial shoot, where she was similarly scantily clad but treated as an object. Here she’s on a throne, her power celebrated. And also she has a bowl of grapes.
Daniel’s Thoughts:
  • We start where we left off last episode: Cordelia is in a different dimension/planet.  She searches for her friends who are not there.
  • She clicks her heels three times just in case. Apt for the title, though.
  • “Silver of Lining”, she says. Silver OF lining?
  • Time to run from a guy in a hyena looking costume!

  • Back on Earth, Lorne panics.
  • Oh, Daniel Dae Kim is in the credits!
  • Angel tries to open up another portal.  It doesn’t work.
  • “You don’t want to be jumping into my world looking like [human].”  Cut to human-looking Cordelia being chased.
  • Luckily hyena/demon boy is like a tame dog.   Unfortunately his owner is not.  He kidnaps Cordelia.
  • Lorne name-checks his world: Pylea.  
  • Lorne says Pylea is similar to a hell dimension because there’s no music there. 
  • Wes says Caritas, as a hotspot, is cold.  They can’t reopen it because it’s out of energy.
  • Gunn’s back from his friend’s Viking funeral.  And he makes a decision not to go with the gang.
  • Back on Pylea, there seems to be two races of humanoids.  One looks kinda like Clem.  The other is Lorne’s race of green demon-like people. 
  • There also seems to be humans there, too, used as slaves.
  • Cordy, who is being bought, tries to use “I am an American!”
  • She has a shock collar around her neck.
  • Who’s that watching? It’s Fred, the librarian!  At this point, in my first rewatch, I just dismissed Fred as a minimal guest character.  In her first episode, she's in a blurry flashback with no lines. In this one, she basically has one speaking scene - and I don't think I gave her much thought as anything more until season 3's premiere episode.
  • Lorne visits a friend running a psychic phone scam.  But she seems to have some psychic power.
  • “I’d rather sit through a junior high production of Cats.” Heh.
  • DANIEL DAE KIM: Gavin Park’s first episode. I almost forgot he was a lawyer on this show.  He and another lawyer want to purchase the Hyperion.
  • Cordy is shoveling demon horse poo.  And the demon horse is so cute.

  • Fred & her adorable Texan accent talk to Cordy.
  • She warns Cordy not to take off the collar or it could implode.  Ooh, like Battle Royale.

  • “I’m just waiting for Wes to have the Eureka Moment.” Wes: “Eureka!”
  • Cordelia has a vision!  And the whole town goes mad.
  • As they’re about to head to the new portal, Gunn joins them. Yay!  Well that was a quick turn-around.
  • Angel takes absolutely no precautions of it possibly being day on the other side of the portal.
  • They all buckle up and drive through the portal.
  • OOPS. The book stays on this side.
  • But on the other side of the portal, they realize that Angel is not affected by the suns here.
  • “I’m not on fire!”
  • “And we didn’t turn into a freakish four-man Siamese twin!”
  • Some of these Pylea demons look like Shrek.
  • A third species of demon conducts a test on Cordy which looks like he’s about to shove something sharp up her nose.  Ooh, like a Covid test!
  • “Don’t forget the book!”  And then there’s a whole “who has the book,” conversation until they realize they no longer have the book.
  • Meanwhile, it has been determined by red demon man that Cordelia indeed has “the curse”
  • “Why are they afraid of Xena?”  Oh Gunn.  Please don't make him the Xander.
  • Lorne goes into a residence and is immediately chased out by Pyleans with axes.
  • Chase!  Fight!
  • “I think we’re winning!” Smash cut to all four of them being tied up.
  • They take Lorne away.  They take the other three away to a different place – tied up in a dungeon.
  • Angel uses his super vampire hearing to discover they found Cordy & discovered her visions.
  • The gang is brought back together with Lorne.
  • Pyleans threaten a death sentence – but first? QUEEN CORDY.

Wes: Yes, we’re all heartily aware that you’re not on fire.
D: How did they not prepare for that?
Z: Maybe they assumed they would land at night since they left at night?
D: Well, you know what happens when you assume.
Z: You turn into a pile of—
D: You catch on fire.
Favorite Lines:
Zelda: “All my life, I thought I was crazy. That I had ghosts in my head or something. Simply because I could hear music. Of course I didn’t know it was music. All I knew is that it was something beautiful and painful and right. And I was the only one who could hear it.” – Lorne
Daniel: “I’d rather sit through a junior high production of Cats.” – Lorne
First Appearance: Gavin Park, Silas, Constable Narwek, Priest #1
Recurring: Lorne, Fred
Future Famous Person: Daniel Dae Kim
Generally Known TV Face: Susan Blommaert, Persia White, William Newman
Whedonverse Hat Trick: Persia White (Aura on Buffy, Agnes “Aggie” Belfleur on Angel), Drew Wicks (second of two roles on Angel, Man on Dollhouse), Jackson Bolt (Pylea Demon on Angel, Viking Warrior on Buffy)
Lorne’s Nicknames: Copernicus (Wes)
Angel! In! History!
Angel remembers being imprisoned in the Tower of London: “Wasn’t that bad.”

Cordelia’s Hair – pinstraight bob with highlights, then extremely very mussed
Dead Humans – 0
Dead Undeads – 0
Dead Flashbacks – 0
Dead Lawyers – 0
Cordelia Has a Vision – 1
Wesley Prat-falls – 0
Lawyered Ex Machina – 0
Evil Reveal – 0
Unevil Reveal – 0
Shenanigans Called – 1
Apocalypse Called – 0
Prophecy Called – 0

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

He Can't Control Himself. Because He's From France?

Episode 2.19: Belonging. Original Airdate: 5.01.01

“A magic portal from another world brings a nasty demon—and the Host’s cousin—to Los Angeles.”

Daniel’s Thoughts:
  • The Fang gang are having a fancy dinner.  They do a schtick where Angel can’t be seen in the mirror and fine.
  • Apparently Cordy has landed a commercial.
  • “I’m not cheap. I’m just old,” says curmudgeonly Angel.
  • They discuss a case and Angel is just worried about the cost of a meal.
  • And then he assaults a woman because he thinks she’s wearing a shawl made of [checks notes] dead children?  Did I get that right?  It’s this thing that comes out of nowhere and goes nowhere.  Just a gag, I guess?
  • “He can’t control himself because…he’s from France.” What?
  • Also please don’t let David Boreanaz do a French accent. [Or an Irish one. – Z]
  • And then Cordy throws up her meal. Angel, “They’ll take that off the bill right?”  I kinda love when they make fun of his age.
  • After the credits, Wesley has an uncomfortably British conversation with his father on the phone.  Full of disappointment and false hope.  Is this the beginning of his daddy issues? Have we seen this before? It’s definitely the start of his episode arc where he starts to question his leadership abilities.
  • Cut to a Hollywood set.
  • Angel walks right past a bikini-clad babe and walks onto the beach set.  He soaks up the imaginary sun. It’s actually kind of sweet.

  • The director condescendingly and misogynistically talks to Cordy.  Makes her take off her robe, turn around.  It’s so gross and cringeworthy. 
  • Angel tries to be hero. But Cordy knows how things are and tells Angel to leave.
  • Sadly, I’m sure Charisma is used to this.
  • Wes & Gunn chat about the demon. Wes goes into a long explanation on the Haklar demon’s physiology etc. but Gunn just wants to know how to kill it.
  • Meanwhile Gunn’s friends stop by to tell him about vamps. He thinks they needs his help.  They just want to borrow his truck.
  • Gunn feels left out.  Or like he’s leaving his friends behind.
  • There’s lots of character work being done here.  Less plot, which is fine.  It’s getting to the end of the season. 
  • Meanwhile at Caritas, Lorne sings Superstition when a portal opens up behind him! Oh no!
  • Some big demon jumps out and starts destroying things.  I thought there was an anti-violence charm on the place.
  • The director continues to be a sexist asshole towards Cordy.
  • Fast forward.  We don’t actually get to see the Haklar demon they’ve been talking about.  Wes & Angel come back from defeating it.
  • Cordy is also back. And dejected. 
  • Lorne comes by to let them know about the Drokken demon that came through the portal.
  • Cut to: Drokken eating a dude.
  • Angel brings up the anti-violence thing at Caritas that I brought up earlier. Way to copy, Angel.
  • Lorne explains it away as it just shoved things so no real damage? 
  • Angel takes the lead.  But then remembers Wes is in charge.  Wes, whose confidence is a bit blown, resigns to Angel’s plan as being best.
  • Meanwhile Cordy has a vision.   It’s Fred! We see Fred for the first time, a librarian with a portal opening up behind her.
  • The reason Gunn isn’t there is because he wanted to catch up with his old friends and fight some vamps.
  • But he gets there too late. George is revealed to be dead. With a bite. They’re not sure if the vamps made him drink, i.e., if he’ll turn. 
  • Lorne walks into the library with the fang gang, minus Gunn, as if he can pass for human.
  • He cannot, as a librarian shows.  But it’s ok, she thinks he’s the children’s entertainer. It’s amazing what people will tell themselves.  She even says Lorne’s horns look fake.  
  • Anyway, It turns out Fred disappeared 5 years ago - which means Cordy’s vision is old.
  • Cordelia finds the book that was in her vision and reads from it. You never read from the book! [And you never speak Latin in front of the books. – Giles] She accidentally opens up a portal. This is what happens when you read from the book.
  • A sword wielding demon that looks like Lorne comes out of the portal.
  • Lorne knows him.   And he knows Lorne.  It’s his cousin, Landok.
  • Oh, this is also the first time the gang learns Lorne’s name.  What have they been calling him the whole time?  
  • They also learn about Lorne’s past, and his dimension. 
  • So Lorne’s cousin passive-aggressively makes him feel bad about his lack of training and disappearing and disappointing his birth-giver.  Hey the theme of this week’s episode is “How to disappoint people and not make friends”.
  • Speaking of disappointing people, Gunn tells Rondell that they should have waited for him.  Rondell: we’ve been waiting for you for months, bro.
  • While they hunt for the thingy demon, Lorne muses to Angel about why he left.
  • They spot the Drokken. Landok doesn’t want to wait for a plan, much to Wesley’s chagrin.  Angel goes in and joins the fight. 
  • Landok gets poisoned by the Drokken’s bite.
  • Oh no! Drokken demon punches Wesley.
  • Angel saves the day.  He puts a sword through its neck.
  • Cordy posits that the portal works both ways.  She’s sure of it.
  • Meanwhile Gunn has a viking funeral for George. They burn the body – probably to ensure that he doesn’t come back.
  • Back at Caritas, Landok reads from the book, the portal opens & he’s back.
  • But oops Cordelia is missing. 
  • Cordelia wakes up in a forest. She looks up and notices two pink suns.  I don’t think we’re in Kansas anymore, Cordy.  End of season arc: started!
Zelda’s Thoughts:
  • Ah, a cute misdirect: we think we’re seeing Cordy and Wes and Gunn having a fancy dinner, but then when we hear Angel’s voice we realize he’s there too but we started with the mirror image.
  • Cordy booked a national commercial! Hell yes!
  • Oh god Angel’s “Irish” “accent” why
  • Also they’re looking forward to acting on a lead from Cordy’s vision and Wes and Gunn are all cute and buddy buddy, and Angel’s slightly left out but when he puts up his fist belatedly for their fistbump, they do put their fists back in the center to include him too. He even looks cutely stoked to be included.

  • Is this when Angel Is Cheap becomes a thing? Get it, guys? He’s not just broody, he’s quirky too!
  • Wes on a long distance call to his parents, so we can all be reminded that even tho Wes is now boss and respected and appreciated by his colleagues, he still has issues because his father is The Absolute Worst. He tells him he’s in charge then has to say “No, I certainly won’t be fired. Well, yes, I was that one time, yes.” Wow just the worst I hate him.
  • Aw, Angel’s visiting Cordy’s commercial set! And he’s cutely excited to pretend he’s on a sunny beach.
  • Well, knowing the future, it’s clear how much this episode is setting up stuff to process or subvert once we go to Pylea. Angel enjoying the sun, Wes either failing or succeeding at leadership, and Cordy being treated as a sexy lamp by her shitty director, who insults her face, makes her spin so he can ogle her ass, and then implies she has an eating disorder.
  • Anyway, Angel tries to defend Cordy and instead she’s more mortified.
  • Ugh, they were so cheerful last night. Now everyone is off-center. When Gunn asks Wes for the rundown on the demon they’re after, Wes falls back on his book-learning persona to give the backstory on the demon, rather than what Gunn actually needs to know. He’s been unsettled by his father’s undermining, and he’s relying on what he knows he’s good at.
  • Oh hey, Gunn’s friends from the episode with Anne and the shelter. Gunn thinks they’re there to ask for his help with their new attack mission but they just want his truck, not him. And Gunn is torn between his two freelance Fight the Evil groups. But he goes with our team, and Rondell and George look disappointed but unsurprised.
  • Angel, ranting about how Cordy’s treated on set, with some bonus foreshadowing: “like she’s a slave or something. And you know what the worst part is? She took it. When was the last time Cordy took crap from any of us?”
  • Ugh gross come on guys. You can’t have your misogyny cake and eat it too. They make it clear the director was behaving a shit, but then all three of our not-terribly-woke boys take a moment to fantasize about their friend in her skimpy bikini, and is that supposed to be funny? Like what the fuck? Can they stop? Being gross?
  • Anyway while I was ranting, Lorne sang us a song until a portal opened behind him and some kind of feral demon broke out, broke a few things and escaped. And Lorne looks haunted and, frankly, a bit PTSD from the sight of him.
  • Cordy’s back at the hotel, subdued after her abusive day on set. “I just wanted to act, that’s all. For them to like me because I was good. I never wanted to feel like this.”
  • Lorne enlists our crew to take out the Drokken demon, which he is able to name and tell them it’s not from their world.
  • Welp and it’s killed a human.
  • Angel automatically takes charge until Cordy quietly reminds him, and to everyone’s credit, they shift easily and agreeably to deferring to Wes (with a nice kudos moment from Lorne, who didn’t know Wes was bossman). But it’s still a nod to the Wes arc we’re working on for the finale arc of the season.
  • Oooooh Cordy had a vision of Fred! Wheeeeeeeeee.
  • Meanwhile, Gunn shows up for his other crew’s mission, but he’s too late. They already did it, and George is dead by vampire draining.
  • Gunn: “Did they make him drink?” // Rondell: “We don’t know.”
  • At the library, trying to track down Cordy’s vision, they find out that the girl disappeared five years ago.
  • Cordy finds the book Fred was reading and you can tell Lorne recognizes it. He’s twitchy and backing away. Cordy reads random words and hey, new portal, new demon, but this one’s a warrior.
  • Also Lorne knows him. “Landok? Is that you?”
  • And for the first time since his appearance at the beginning of the season, they name The Host: Krevlorneswath of the Deathwok Clan. But he prefers Lorne.
  • And hey speaking of bad parents, Lorne’s mom sounds like the absolute worst.
  • Lorne’s cousin Landok speaks without contractions, something I remember Groo will do too. Our Lorne loves him some contractions. No wonder he didn’t fit in.
  • Gunn, furious and heartbroken: “You shoulda waited for me.” // “We’ve been waiting on you for months, bro.” And then they build the funeral pyre because they know they have to burn the corpse, in case he drank and was turned.
  • Lorne hates his home dimension, “No music, no art. Just champions roaming the countryside.” He clearly hated his life there, but I wonder why he keeps trotting out the champion term to Angel, since regarding his origins, it’s a lifestyle he hates.
  • “For the last time, not a coward. I just saw both sides of the joust. How are you supposed to joust someone when you partially agree with their point of view?” Also he makes a crack about chatting up the senoritas, so I guess he’s not gay but come on he’s at least bi, right? Just let him be bi, writers. You can do it. I believe in you. [No, also spoilers, Andrew - Writers]
  • Anyway fighty fight the Drokkan demon, Landok’s been poisoned by the fight, fighty fight, flarey flare, stalky stalk “Hey, you want food? I can be food. Pretty tasty here. Here kitty kitty kitty.” Okay fine I half-smiled.
  • And, finally, a sword through the demon’s neck. Crisis averted!
  • Anyway, they send Landok back through the portal … and also Cordy.
  • Welcome to Pylea, Cordelia! It’s got two suns. Is that a Star Wars reference?
  • “Oh crap.”
Favorite Lines:

“Oh Crap” – Cordelia realizing she's been portaled to a new dimension.
Zelda: “For the last time, not a coward. I just saw both sides of the joust. How are you supposed to joust someone when you partially agree with their point of view?” – Lorne


First Appearance:
Fred Burkle, Landok
Recurring: Angel’s Irish accent, Lorne, Rondell, George
Generally Known TV Face: Brody Hutzler
Whedonverse Hat Trick: Amy Acker (first of two roles on Angel, Spoiler on Dollhouse, Lin in Cabin in the Woods, Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing, Audrey Nathan on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
Lorne’s Nicknames: Lorne (Krevlorneswath of the Deathwok Clan), golden spawn (Landok)

Angel! In! History!

Angel is so old he remembers when a few bob would get you a good meal, a bottle, and a tavern wench. Also he was a fan of Bonanza.

Caritas Song List


Cordelia’s Hair – big body curls in her bob, then teased up, then pin straight, stronger blonde highlights in the bangs
Dead Humans – 3
Dead Undeads – 1
Dead Flashbacks – 0
Dead Lawyers – 0
Cordelia Has a Vision – 1
Wesley Prat-falls – 0
Lawyered Ex Machina – 0
Evil Reveal – 0
Unevil Reveal – 0
Shenanigans Called – 0
Apocalypse Called – 0
Prophecy Called – 0
Champion Called – 1

Monday, January 4, 2021

Luckiest. Delivery Man. Ever.

 Episode 2.18: Dead End. Original Airdate: 4.24.01

“Wolfram and Hart arranges for Lindsey to get a new hand, but when it turns out to be evil, Angel investigates the firm’s source of body parts.”

Zelda’s Thoughts:
  • Ah, the Lindsey Has An Evil Hand episode. Cool cool.
  • Well, right now he has a prosthetic hand.
  • We follow his morning routine of doing things one-handed – including all his ties pre-tied, and then the camera (and Lindsey) linger on his guitar, sitting unloved and unplayed in his closet.
  • We smashcut from whatever’s about to happen with Darryl to Cordy suffering badly under a vision of it, weeping and gasping, as Angel tries to comfort her. Definitely moving forward on the arc of the toll the visions are taking on her.
  • Evil Lawyers having an Evil Lawyer Meeting blah blah Lilah’s a bit skittish and Lindsey’s pretty blasé and cynical. She’s worried she’s about to be killed when he gets promoted, and he seems to care as much as he cared about potentially being killed by Darla that one time.
  • Anyway boring not-Holland-Manners boss man made a mysterious all-day appointment for Lindsey. Evil Hand!
  • Cordy’s troubled by the vision. Nothing seemed to be wrong, and suddenly there was a knife in the eye, and I’m supergrateful they didn’t really get very visual on that graphic.
  • Meanwhile, over at the Hyperion, they’re failing at most of their detectiving to track down Darryl from CXG.
  • Cordy, still shaken hours later, clutches her forehead. “I wish it would stop hurting … I just keep seeing it.” She’s not even looking for comfort, that’s how wrapped she is in the pain of it and the guilt at not being able to stop it.
  • But over where the evils hang out, Lindsey pulls out his guitar and starts playing and oh right Christian Kane is also a musician so he can do that for realsies.
  • And L&L are tag-teaming some Evil Lawyering, while Lindsey’s new hand idly jots down notes. Unfortunately, all those notes are just the word “KILL” over and over again. Awkward, that.
  • Okay so Angel bought every kind of food for Cordelia, because he’s getting better at listening and she said she was tired of people asking her stuff. And she says “I love you” and it’s super sweet and Angel smiles the sweetest smile the man has literally ever smiled and THAT’S super sweet and okay I get why some people ship this. 

  • Everyone but Angel agrees with me that this is nice. Also I think Christian Kane and show creator David Greenwalt co-wrote the song he’s singing?
  • Cordy: “We can’t sing after that.” // Lorne: “You won’t have to.” Luckily, Lindsey’s problem ties in with our gang’s problem. Everyone fanning over Lindsey’s performance is flipping adorable.
  • At least Angel is showing better detectiving now they have a lead: he lifts the glass Lindsey was holding to get prints off the transplant hand.
  • Back at the hotel, Angel gets complimented for his collected intel from the print but deflects how he got it … he hired someone else to detective … again. Wow he’s the worst.
  • Lindsey’s so mad Angel came to question the same lead he’s questioning, then is mad at him for saving him. “Why aren’t you trying to kill me?”
  • See? I ship Angel and Lindsey more than I ship Angel and Cordy. Their angry banter chemistry is good stuff.
  • Gunn: “Is it me or are these vision hangovers getting longer and longer? It’s like she can’t rest in there til it’s done.” Wes is worried that she can’t carry it like Doyle did because he was half-demon, and remembers how she was delirious and in the hospital at the end of last season.
  • Angel and Lindsey continue their date with a night drive as Angel wonders why Lindsey isn’t happier, now he’s got his new hand.
  • Their date continues with beating up some randos. So romantic.
  • Anyway, down into a basement and gulp. A bunch of bodies upright in some kind of cryostorage, all alive but many of them with missing pieces. So Lindsey’s hand, Darryl’s eye, they came from these “living” donors.
  • Lindsey recognizes his “donor” – they worked in the mailroom together. And he’s alert enough to say “Kill … kill … kill me … please.”
  • Angel sets about releasing the others while Lindsey unplugs his donor’s machine. He didn’t seem like he was missing more than his hand though? Why couldn’t they rescue him too?
  • In the denouement, Cordelia finally admits to herself and the crew that the visions are taking a bigger toll. “It’s part of the job, right?”
  • Denouement part two: Evil Lawyer Meeting. Lindsey stops Lilah from pulling out her gun in desperation. But Lindsey’s going out in a blaze of burn-this-shit-up monologue about his evil hand, grabbing the guard’s gun and shooting everywhere, blaming it all on the evil hand. 

  • He then tells Not Holland that he should have chosen Lilah to promote, with all the work she’s put in, and all the dirt she has on them. So I guess he’s an ally? “Me, I’m unreliable. I got these evil hand issues. And I’m bored with this crap.” NM he gropes Lilah on the way out, not such an ally.
  • Lilah gets her promotion, Lindsey gets to actually leave in a way most W&H employees don’t, and if this were the last we see of him, I’d be satisfied with the arc. But hey, season five.
  • Lindsey’s on his way outta Dodge with his old old truck. He and Angel have a tearful farewell. Well, maybe not tearful. “I hope you’re not waiting for me to tell you that I learned some kind of a lesson. That I had a big moral crisis but now I see the light.” // “If you told me that, I’d have to kill you. I’m just here to say bon voyage. Don’t come back.” // “To LA? Nah, you can have this place.”
  • And one last tip from Lindsey: “The key to Wolfram & Hart. Don’t let them make you play their game. You gotta make them play yours.” So now we all just glare at season five together?
  • …Angel put a COPS SUCK sign on the back of Lindsey’s car. I guess that was the immature thing he “didn’t have to do”?
Daniel’s Thoughts:
  • Hello shirtless Lindsey with his “hand” hidden underneath the covers so no VFX has to be used.
  • His stump is seen separate from the rest of his body, again, I’m assuming for practical FX purposes.
  • He stares at his guitar longingly.  How did he become a part of such an evil law firm, he thinks, as he remembers strumming his guitar (probably shirtless) on the prairies of flyover states. 
  • Cut to Typical American Family.  Dad gets a kiss from his daughter and a “manly handshake” from his son.  Gross.
  • And then he picks up a knife.
  • Cordelia meanwhile has the mother of all visions.  It hurts so much she starts sobbing. She sees American Dad with a knife and blood.
  • Meanwhile at Wolfram & Hart – they talk law stuff I don’t care much about.  Lindsey & Lilah are there and whatshisface - the guy who is less interesting than Holland. (Nathan?)
  • L&L also update him on Angel.
  • They’re also going to be reevaluating Lindsey and Lilah’s department which means one of them will be promoted.  Lilah is worried she’ll be cut & at W&H that’s literal.
  • Cordelia’s vision is a little unclear. Apparently the dad in the family killed himself with that knife.
  • Lindsey has been signed up for a doctor’s appointment but he doesn’t know what’s actually happening.
  • Lindsey’s getting a new hand.
  • “This is cause for applause and in just a few hours time, you’ll be doing the applauding.”   Ha. Ha.
  • Ok so creepy. This new hand is being magically put on by a weird demon in a red robe.
  • I wonder if it’s the same hand that the dad used to stab his eye.  Hmm. [it’s not - Future Daniel]
  • Gunn is using a phonebook to call hospitals.  How 2001.
  • No one’s come up with anything.
  • The elevator in the Hyperion looks like the Tower of Terror. I’m sure I’ve noticed that before but it’s so prominent here that I’m focusing on it.
  • Angel convinces Cordelia to look into the vision again & she does.  Revisiting her vision seems to be painful.
  • Day two: Hello shirtless Lindsey in bed again.  He’s in the same exact position like he’s stuck in a Groundhog Day loop.  But this time he pulls out his covered hand…and it’s a hand!
  • He looks at that guitar again and this time he plays it.
  • At work, Nathan tells the client that he’s in….good hands.  Wink Wink. 
  • Lindsey & Lilah have a meeting with the head of a company that I guess has been poisoning people with chocolate.  He knows what kind of law firm it is because when Lilah mentions enchanting the jury, he doesn’t blink an eye.
  • Lindsey’s new hand…is writing kill kill kill over and over again.
  • Back at the Hyperion, Angel has ordered sandwiches.  He tells the delivery man to keep the change and the delivery man (who is not listed on IMDB, credited or not credited) responds sarcastically: "Wow. A whole dollar just for me. I'm the luckiest delivery man ever.” And it’s hilarious.
  • Ahh, we get a little more info on this guy who stabbed himself in the eye.
  • Cordelia figures out that he was happy about his eye…like he just acquired it.
  • Wes & Gunn find out that the family has been disappeared. 
  • At Caritas, Lindsey is singing and guitar playing.  That’s not karaoke:
  • Shazam tells me that this is an original song by Christian Kane.
  • Lorne tells everyone that they’re all working on the same case:  That Lindsey’s new murderous hand has to do with the guy who stabbed himself in the eye.
  • “He’s got your case, forgive me, in the palm of his hand. “ All these dad jokes.  Who wrote this? Greenwalt wrote this one.  At least Lorne had the decency to apologize for his.
  • Angel’s got an idea.  He got Lindsey’s fingerprints off the glass of water he drank. 
  • But he doesn’t have a policewoman frenemy anymore.  How’s that gonna work?
  • Meanwhile Lindsey has his own plan – He uses Nathan’s computer.
  • Fact: Nathan Reed’s password is ‘Zen’.
  • And the computer and its contents look like this and….oh man. This was about 20 years ago?

  • So Angel did it but doesn’t want to explain how.  When he’s forced to, he says he hired a private detective…
  • Angel says, “We did, she got fired, get over it.” Explaining away Kate’s absence who could have really helped this ep.
  • They need another frenemy on the force.
  • Lindsey, still at the office, finds Lilah looking through files. I’m surprised most of W&H isn’t still working.  I mean lawyers, plus evil. I mean, more evil than usual.  You work at least 100 hours a week at a firm like that.
  • Lindsey visits a parole officer.
  • Fact: Christian Kane doesn’t know how to pronounce Lawyer.
  • The parole officer punches Lindsey and gets him in a chokehold.
  • And then Angel attacks from the window. Neat way of getting around the home entering thing.
  • “You’re choking my lead!” - Lindsey, to Angel.
  • Angel & Lindsey act bad cop bad cop to get the info from Parole Officer Guy. It works.
  • Cordelia is still really upset.
  • Gunn & Wesley are concerned. Wes tells Gunn about what happened last year when Cordy ended up in the hospital.
  • Fight time!  Angel & Lindsey work on the same side.  They seem to be fighting humans only.  They knock all of them out.
  • Ooh.  They find a basement full of people in cryo-chambers being kept alive for their parts…
  • Turns out Lindsey’s hand comes from some guy from W&H mailroom.  And he keeps saying “Kill Me.”
  • Angel saves some people.
  • Lindsey kills Mail Room guy.  Mercifully, I guess?  I mean.  He was just missing a hand.  They probably could have saved him. 
  • Then they blow up the entire place.
  • It’s time for the promotion. Long story short, too late. Lindsey quits & tells them to promote Lilah.
  • He reminds everyone that he has an evil hand so not to come after him.  And I guess it works?  Kinda too easy.  But I guess the powers that be - and by that I mean the producers - wanted Lindsey to live. For now.  There is some light blackmail, too.
  • Lindsey packs his stupid truck. Angel wishes him goodbye.  I don’t know if this is the intent, but I ship it.  

We ship it.

Favorite Lines:
Zelda: Gunn: Angel’s gonna sing? // Cordy: Isn’t there some other way? // Wes: There has to be. Think, damn it! // Angel: Hey!
Cordy: "Why didn't you ask me?" Angel: "Well, you said, why is everyone asking you if they can get you anything, and-and I didn't wanna *do* that..." Cordy: "So you did this - instead." Angel quietly: "Yup." Cordy: "I love you."
Recurring: Lindsey McDonald, Lilah Morgan, Lorne, Nathan Reed
Generally Known TV Face: Michael Dempsey, Kavita Patil, Pete Gardner, Stephanie Nash
Whedonverse Hat Trick: Kavita Patil (Nurse on Angel, Mrs. Lee on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.), Stephanie Nash (Wife on Angel, Dr. Wilton on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.)
Lorne’s Nicknames: Angel Cakes (Angel), Pilgrim (Lindsey), Sugar (Lindsey)
Lindsey’s Nicknames: Mr. Save-a-Soul (Angel)
Angel! In! History!
“Back in the 50s, we all thought life was gonna be like The Jetsons by now.”
Also Angel is old enough to think $1 is a good tip on a whole bunch of delivery food.

Caritas Song List
“LA Song”
Cordelia’s Hair – chin bob with highlights
Dead Humans – 2 
Dead Undeads – 0
Dead Flashbacks – 0
Dead Lawyers – 0
Cordelia Has a Vision – 1
Wesley Prat-falls – 0
Lawyered Ex Machina – 0
Evil Handed Ex Machina – 1
Evil Reveal – 1 (evil hand!)
Unevil Reveal – 1 (source of evil hand just wanted to die)
Shenanigans Called – 0
Apocalypse Called – 0
Prophecy Called – 0