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Thread: Positives And Negatives - Season 2

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    Reprise

    Positive: Loved Angel and Darla's scenes, emotional and powerful. Loving this Angel actually. He really does work best when he's inhabiting the grey areas. Love the 'home office' conceit, Lindsey and Lilah are both great. Even Kate's suicide attempt works, as she's been constantly written as brittle and emotional.

    Negative: Not a lot of negative here. Such a good episode. Maybe Wesley and Virginia's break-up - I've never been interested in them as a couple, so their break-up didn't matter to me.

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    Epiphany

    Positive: Angel and Darla are always a treat. Angel trying to re-connect with Wesley is sweet and funny, and Wes isn't giving him an inch. Nice to see Angel humbled and conciliatory and I enjoyed the 'I got ya' little bit of Cangel Really good episode, would have been great without the inbuilt sexism

    Negative: Lorne's 'You think you're the first guy who ever rolled over, saw what was lying next to him and went 'Guyeah!' just sounded so sexist and horrible. I wish he's said 'person' instead of 'guy'. Once again Cordy is being threatened with demon impregnation.

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    Disharmony

    Positive: This was a really great episode about the complexity of Cordy. She's passed over as boss,(even thought she was there first and Wes is injured) She doesn't see herself as a 'detective', more an office manager, but she also reliving her glory days with Harmony (they are wonderful together) and talking about how she's changed, how happy she is and talks about the 'work I'm doing . . . that we're doing', undervaluing herself. She seems, when compared to Harmony, to have grown so much, yet at the end of the ep she becomes the old Cordy when faced with someone giving her presents. Just love all these aspects of Cordy.

    Negative: Didn't like the faux-lesbian misunderstanding and Cordy's horror played for laughs.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Dead End

    Positive: The scenes between Lindsey and Angel are great. Love Angel's jealousy and Lindsey's childlike tantrum later. There is great chemistry between these two. They bring out the worst in each other and it's fun to watch.


    Negative: Felt like poor Cordy's having women's problems, having feelings and the men in the office just don't know how to handle them. The visions as PMS. They can't even talk to her like she's part of the team, an equal, they behave like she's being over emotional and is somehow separate from them. They actually appear really pathetic. It should be sweet when Angel turns up with the food, but really, it's like buying her clothes last episode, it's separating her, making her different. Cordy is the most important resource they have, but they don't treat her like that, and she doesn't know how important she is.

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    Judgement
    Positive: Lorne.
    Negative: The case with the pregnant woman is not really interesting.

    Are You Now Or Have You Ever Been
    Positive: Everything.
    Negative: Kind of a nitpick, but no one in the hotel ever wonders what happen to Angel's body after they hung him.

    First Impressions
    Positive: The Angel and Darla dream scenes.
    Negative: Everything else.

    Untouched
    Positive: First appearance of Gunn's hubcap ax.
    Negative: This episode pretty much feel's like filler. It does nothing to advance the season's story line. Bethany's Dad coming to a sudden stop four feet from the ground is pretty goofy.

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    Belonging

    Positive: Angel's pleasure at being on the set was so sweet, foreshadowing what is to come. Lorne is always a pleasure and it's fun to get some backstory for him. Love the way he describes Angel's perfect world.

    Negative: Not sure how we're meant to feel about Angel stepping up to the commercial director, who was an absolute *******, but it wasn't his place. Then Angel, Gunn and Wes all take a moment to enjoy the visualisation of Cordy in a bikini - making their friend nothing more than an object. All this plays into the problems Cordy's had over the last few episodes, and here she's made to feel less because she can't get the job she wants without showing off her body and isn't doing an important job like the 'boys' playing detectives, and she's already said she feels like the office manager, and once again she asks 'why does everyone always ask me if I'm okay?' Cordy is so strong, and she's struggling in this world.

    I just don't know if the writers mean to highlight Cordy's problems, or I'm just seeing stuff that isn't there. Or time has changed the meaning of what's on screen. So really this negative could also be considered a positive I think it must be meant because in an episode about belonging, and Cordy's felt like she hasn't belonged for a while now, she ends up in another dimension, in a world that embraces her for who she is and she finally gets to belong (I know it doesn't end well, but unfortunately that's Cordy's lot in life - it never ends well)

    I've never watched AtS through Cordy's eyes before, making her the central character, and it really opens the show up and makes me think about it in ways I never have before. So I guess my only real negative is that I really don't care about Wesley's daddy issues or that Gunn is growing apart from his crew.

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    Over The Rainbow

    Positive:Angel being so gleeful about being in the sun is just great and Lorne hating being back in his home dimension is so much fun, 'your standard film noir'.

    Negative: Is her name 'Frankie'? The friend of Lornes who suddenly appears and can find a portal, which seems very fortunate, like she's the therapists therapist. I don't think we see her again do we?

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    Through The Looking Glass

    Positive: Angel's pleasure at seeing his reflection is great, but then the twist is that his demon face is different in this world, and he's not able to control himself. That all works really well. Special mention for Lorne and his family, they were gold.

    Negative: Cordy should kick these moogs to the curb pronto. Gunn's line 'She's the messiah' make me want to smash his face in She's got the visions from TPB, what have you got? A pick-up truck you conned a demon for? And as Cordy says herself 'why do demons in every dimension want to impregnate me' - it's funny, but it's also annoying that the only thing the writers can think to do to put the main female character in jeopardy is the threat of impregnation - and then they have her questioning herself 'Do I put out some sort of comshuck vibe?'

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    There's No Place Like Plrtz Glrb

    Positive: When Lorne's decapitated head starts talking, so funny. I like that Cordy calls the visions an honour, and rescues herself at last. Willow's appearance at the end bought a lump to my throat.

    Negative: I'm not a fan of Groo, he never questions the monks, he doesn't seem capable of running anything, never mind a country. Gunn's final speech makes me cringe.

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    Dear Boy
    Positive: Pretty great episode. I especially love the plot twist that Darla was brought back as a human.
    You have Angel who might become human again someday cause of the Shanshu Prophecy, and here's Darla who has what Angel wants, and she doesn't appreciate the fact that she has a second chance.

    Negative: Lindsey and Darla's plan to frame Angel for murder feels pretty pointless.
    Also the case with the husband thinking that his wife is getting abducted by aliens is really stupid.

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    Well I've just started rewatching S2 so I'm back to add to the single effort I made when Pricey first went through this one.


    Judgement

    Positive - I like seeing Wes developing with the gained confidence that truly being wanted/accepted finally has given him. He's gained a touch of competence with it, but is still trying to push it that little bit more, so he still makes a bit of a fool of himself in the bar too. His knowledge of the demon community in LA, his awareness of Merle and Caritas, fits to the demon hunter image he was trying to build before. Knowing the underworld and about pivotal places and people that could aid them. It fits the detective aspect too, greatly research based but about wanting to be of practical help as well. Seeing that side of him emerging naturally when he is feeling at ease is great.

    Negative - I enjoy this episode and although I'd never say it was a favourite I genuinely find it really hard to pick a negative. Any that I think of I then reason them away for myself. I'll go with the fact that the show uses so much stereotyping with Gunn's character that while seeing Cordelia getting in a fluster when she does that when Gunn arrives is funny, it's inclusion just makes me feel that the writers don't see how much they do this themselves constantly. I'd like to think that it is actually there because they realised on reflection of S1 and wrote it in deliberately 'at' themselves, but the ongoing reoccurrence of this makes me wonder still.

    --
    Are You Now Or Have You Ever Been is the single ep I did last time (and is my personal favourite) so I won't be back to this for possible over a week when I get on to episode 3.

    Quote Originally Posted by Priceless View Post
    Why didn't the pregnant woman tell Angel that the demon was her friend before he killed him? She just stood there, silent, she should have opened her mouth. Her stupidity was used to further the story, but it was too unbelievable.
    I just assumed that she thought Angel was an enemy. So from her point of view she was watching her protector protecting her. Angel tells her he is not a threat himself when he first arrives but the Prio demon then attacks him so she might believe that her bodyguard knows better and is doing his job. So it would have been strange if she was yelling to Angel to not hurt the demon when she thinks it is fighting to keep her safe against him I think.

    I agree with previous negative comments that the pregnant woman storyline lacks.

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    I just assumed that she thought Angel was an enemy. So from her point of view she was watching her protector protecting her. Angel tells her he is not a threat himself when he first arrives but the Prio demon then attacks him so she might believe that her bodyguard knows better and is doing his job. So it would have been strange if she was yelling to Angel to not hurt the demon when she thinks it is fighting to keep her safe against him I think.
    Yes, I think you are right, she must think Angel is there to hurt her. But I still find it worrying that she says nothing. It plays into the damselling that AtS does a lot in its early episodes, where the woman need rescuing and says or does little to help herself.

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    I'm back! I had already provided a positive/negative for AYNOHYEB so wasn't going to again as I went through this season rewatch but I can't help myself and I have to say that I *loved* it just as much as ever. I did still find the idea Judy was still in the hotel problematic (although yes, I'm still loving the tie through on offering forgiveness as a freeing act). And it's not that the Thesulac had her fearing leaving and had been increasing and feeding from her guilt, but it's that she'd managed to survive fifty years in isolation there alone. I mean what did she eat? I didn't actually feel Gunn was shoehorned in so much this time, which was the only other negative I offered before. But then I'm enjoying Gunn's inclusion generally this time around a little more than I have before and I really enjoyed the exchange between him and Wes when they arrived at the hotel (and Wes' worry about being accused of being especially paranoid, ha, just perfect). I mean seriously, I just love that episode. It's easily one of my favourites of the whole series. It's just top drawer. Anyway, I'm supposed to be moving on.

    First Impressions

    Positive - I love the multiple ties to the episode title. Perceptions of others/selves are so often a feature in the shows and here it ties well to the sister episode The Replacement where Xander is learning about himself too. In AtS we're focussing greatly on Gunn's perception of himself, Cordy, Wes and Angel and theirs of themselves as a group, and with plenty of additional snippets of such considerations throughout. From David Nabbit's self conscious appearance but established/proficient financial knowhow, to Angel worrying about wearing the pink helmet that it turns out Wes is going to mock him for, through to the important main reveal that what Angel is experiencing isn't just all a dream as it initially seems but Darla is actually visiting him as he sleeps.

    Negative - It made no sense that Deevak was hiding who he was other than to give the wrong 'first impression'. It didn't fit to the character for any logical reason I could parse out for why he had bothered doing that. Also, I have to say although I enjoyed Cordy's determination and the emphasis it gave to her focus on the mission and wanting to help, and I liked her/Gunn's banter and interactions generally, I found her a bit pious at the end when telling him her visions were telling him about the danger he was being to himself. It came across as quite patronising and leaning to sanctimonious. Perhaps that is supposed to fit the idea of him as being a 'kid' as they kept saying when he was first introduced. But it just doesn't work visually to try to pass off Gunn as so much younger than Cordy.

    --
    I agree with Aurora that Gunn's aggression doesn't come off well, but I don't find it as problematic. But then I didn't find Kate disjointed in S1 either. As I said earlier, I'm warming a bit to Gunn (although I'll be surprised if I enjoy Gunn/Fred any more this time around too). I think as someone who's social situation plays such a key aspect of his arc his bristling at his own leaning towards this new group and discomfort in what it might say about him and his possible desire to leave behind those that he's grown up with, where he has grown up, is interesting. It conflicts to his very real loyalty and deeply felt connections and makes his choices layered. I think I just enjoyed this episode more than I have on previous viewings this time.

    Quote Originally Posted by American Aurora View Post
    I've thought about this and I think my issue is with Cordy's character in this episode. They try to show her being mature and responsible and caring. She fought demons, she saved that girls life without panicking, she spoke to Gunn normally, though perhaps treating him as a disruptive child, but even so. Beyond that, this is still Cordelia Chase, the biggest bitch in Sunnydale history, and yet, with this combination of traits at play, she goes to a house party and becomes someone totally different, she starts rambling like an early seasons Willow might, and seems to suggest there is a connection between black women and prostitution . . . Cordy may have come from whiter than white Sunnydale, but she's in LA now, she's an actor, she's protecting Gunn and they're working together, I just don't see her falling apart like this when faced with a room full of black people. And it wasn't even funny
    This I agree with though. A little like the issue with Deevak it was the theme of the episode being forced in excessively at times. And I can see vampmogs' point that writer diversity may have helped the episode too. But then I think there is an ongoing issue with how they portray Gunn's roots, so this probably ties to that consistent problem.

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    And I continue to steadily rewatch week by week, and so now I'm at...

    Dear Boy

    Positive - I agree with the comments about Angel's scene with Lorne and the Dru flashbacks. I find Dru a character I can enjoy and appreciate more after seeing how horrific and terrifying her experience was. I also appreciate seeing some validation to how deliberate and malicious Angel was as a vamp. Anyway, to name something different and because I'm looking to appreciate him more on this rewatch, I'm going to say Gunn. His logical deduction proving that those already in the house weren't genuine owners or Angel wouldn't have been able to enter is great and emphasises how emotionally driven Kate is behaving. His wariness on hearing Angel can go dark is balanced by his stance on the side of the team he's working alongside until proven to be necessary to change it. I feel there's also an undercurrent of him siding with those that aren't reducing him in the way Kate does as she is trying to keep the situation simplified to sustain her blind anger at Angel and so Gunn's dislike of being reduced to his rap sheet I think plays into where he keeps his loyalty and I think it's layered and works well to character.

    Negative - Like vampmogs I also find the scene with Angel/Darla at the end a bit muddled. There are aspects that I like and I really like the last line from Darla too, but I find the idea that he dragged her out to this secluded location to argue with her strange, especially where he's going to get trapped by the daylight. I also feel some frustration with both the expectation that eventually Darla's guilt will start to kick in but just hasn't yet (a set up for what is to come rather than something that just might not be true for her as I'll go on to mention) and the way his dismissal of having been happy with her when unsouled was presented, rather than his measure of what it means having very significantly changed or the possible depth. Happiness is attributed to having his soul in a simplification and one that apparently she just wouldn't understand. It just feels shallow when he's also readily trying to tell her what being souled will and should bring her regarding feeling guilt.

    Quote Originally Posted by vampmogs View Post
    The scene where Angelus first spots Drusilla is a retcon from Becoming I but I don't even mind. You can easily fanwank both of them so it makes sense
    Do you just reason that the original meeting given in Becoming happens later, after having already been shown Dru by Darla as we see here? I can see how it can work if Angel was incidentally in the church and just hadn't expecting Dru to turn up for confession but just took advantage of the situation. Or do you fanwank it to work the other way around and his delight in Darla is in part because he met Dru earlier?

    Quote Originally Posted by American Aurora View Post
    But it's still a great scene with some superb lines - Darla's just so deliciously wicked even as a human. "You're hurting me. I like it."
    Yes and at this point it is presented as just being the way she is human/souled, even though Angel implies he expects her attitude could and should change. Obviously it wouldn't necessarily. Some humans are shown to not change much through being vamped and she could be such a one. In fact when we learn more about where she came from as a human in Darla and why she may have such a low belief in human goodness that needs building, she becomes more nuanced than characters such as Harmony, Kralik and the Gorch brothers are presented (as the other main examples off the top of my head).
    Last edited by Stoney; 15-12-18 at 03:20 PM.

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    Guise Will Be Guise

    Positive - I have to agree with everything that's been said about the Swami scenes. The conversation between him and Angel is so great and in a lovely reflection to Family I especially like the point that he raises to Angel that the people around him give him a reflection. Obviously a lot of the ties between the two shows fall to the abusive fathers, but the family we choose for ourselves and the group you belong in are fundamental aspects to both too. How they perceive him, how he presents himself to them, it's a common theme in both shows but here it's just so relevant for where his story is going to go this season and how he pushes them away and why. I enjoyed the episode more beyond this aspect than when I've watched it before, but overall I still think it's one of the weakest AtS produced.

    Negative - The point of revisiting and establishing the question mark over the misconception that it is just sex that breaks the curse (something it was always clearly more than when it happened before to be honest) sets up for Angel's failed attempt to lose his soul of course but the scene between Wes/Virginia is made all the more awkward by the debating of the curse and makes them both look foolish because of the sudden desperation they grab at each other with despite the theoretical (especially from Virginia's pov) risk. I find the whole romance oddly immature (even though I get their draw to each other as both suffering under abusive fathers). Just not a relationship I'm keen on and the 'in Virginia' gag I just don't find funny, it's a bit childish too.

    Quote Originally Posted by American Aurora View Post
    Positives: Lorne. Always love him - always will. I've known guys like him all my life - especially here in New York.
    Yeah it was a good scene between Angel and Lorne and I loved the whole relief everyone felt that Angel didn't have to sing.

    Agree with everyone on the implausibility of Wes managing to convince people that he was Angel.

    Quote Originally Posted by vampmogs View Post
    ...it always bugged me that a regular guy is able to give Angel - the vampire - such a run for his money during their sparring sessions.
    I thought the point in that scene was that Angel was holding back and wasn't fighting without restraint. Sure it's overplayed but you can just put it down to his concern he'd hurt the guy and that then feeds into the Swami saying this is still his demon side dictating his choices.
    Last edited by Stoney; 20-12-18 at 02:42 PM.

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    Ok- I'm gonna be writing about S2 alongside Stoney. Yay!

    Judgement:

    Positive: This ep's strength is the little moments, especially as mentioned Angel/Faith and the cute team-building. I also like the Lilah/Lindsay/Darla scene as well. This is one of my favorite Lilah-lines- "Of course if you don't sign, I'll sue your ass off and kill your children.....Just kidding, Donald! Nobody wants a lawsuit."

    S1 indicated that W&H associates compete with each other but S2 takes it to a whole new level in how a main plot of the season is Lilah and Linday's To!The!Death! competition. I think the scene is a bit of a microcosm of the future dynamics we will see in S2. Lilah is laser focused on the work-place competition as she strides in making hilarious bitchy comments about Lindsay's missing hand as he struggles with the CDs. "You're not handicapped. You're HAND-icapable." IMO, Lindsay through the whole show has an attitude that he doesn't have to openly hustle like ordinary yuppie Lilah if he's just Special and he can mark his Special-ness by getting to sit at the Table with the Superpowered Special Cool Kidz. So, Lindsay's laser focus in this scene is pleasing Darla and presuming that they're tight and understand each other as Lilah can't.

    Negative: I agree that the pregnant women story is dull. (But I agree that the woman was logically too shell-shocked to yell when Angel was killing her demon protector and that doesn't make her stupid.) The Tribunal and jousting was hokey. Also, this may be one of the most unpopular opinions that I hold but I don't think Angel's fixation on Barry Manilow is funny.
    Last edited by Dipstick; 20-12-18 at 10:14 PM.

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    Aces!

    You are wrong about the Manilow thing though.

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    Are You Now, Or Have You Ever Been

    Positive: Such a favorite ep! Disclaimer: I'm a white woman but I think this is the best Buffyverse ep to deal with race. Quite the contrast to how the next ep, First Impressions, does a crappy job dealing with racial issues. (I was just thinking about this because my boyfriend and I were discussing how annoying Brad Pitt's White Savior character was in 12 Years a Slave last night.) It finesses how Angel and Judy are connected and feel simpatico because they're Other without equating demons with gay people or black people. Angel and Judy are connected because they're both "passing" as mainstream, they're caught between their Other family and the society that they're passing in, they committed crimes which are eating them up with guilt, etc. However, the script is entirely clear-eyed on the tremendous gap in resources and passing-ability and crime-history between Angel and Judy. Angel felt empathy for Judy in the '50s but he's absolutely not the White Savior character. In fact, the help that Angel gave Judy in the '50s becomes merely a tool for the Thesulac to torture her even more for 50 years because Angel didn't do the work to save her back in the '50s.

    Thesulac: ....And you thought you'd made a friend. News flash! You *had*! That's what made her the *yummiest* morsel of all. You reached her, buddy! Restored her faith in people. Without you she would have been just another appetizer. But you plumped her up good! Now, she's a meal that's gonna last me a lifetime!

    This isn't an episode about fluffing up Angel's character so that Judy's plight looks less dire. Judy's situation WAS that dire.

    Negative: I really love the scene where Angel finds Old!Judy at the hotel and they come to a peaceful finish but the weight of how Judy spent the last 50 years in hell sinks in as she dies. However, as said before, it requires a lot of fanwanking to explain how she survived all of these years trapped in the hotel.

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    First Impressions

    Postive: There's two incredibly relatable moments in this ep. First, Gunn getting righteously pissy that he's done whatever favor Angel's asked for and how Angel overslept the first time Gunn came around looking for Angel's help. LOL, I've been on both sides of the "How dare you oversleep when you agreed to do me a favor" spat. Second, when Cordelia/Angel/Wesley are tired and a little sore/immobilized from the fight and they just get distracted talking about Denzel Washington while they sit and recover. I haven't fought demons but I've been there in the "Can't get up- too tired. Let's jawbone about pop culture." In fact, I'm kind of doing that right now...

    I also like that Angel just matter-of-factly has Wesley and Cordelia come along to take care of Deevak and then, Cordelia just takes it upon herself to follow Gunn as his protector. A great thing about early S2 is that IMO it's the most egalitarian form of the gang when it comes to fighting. In S1, Angel typically went off and left Doyle/Cordelia/Wesley back at the office so that he could do the dark avenger thing and his supporting cast was drawn in later on once the plot developed as the climax approached. In S3-4, we get this infamous dynamic of the (masculine presenting) men going off to fight while Cordelia/Fred/Lorne were more likely to stay back and if Cordelia/Fred did enter the fray, there was a lot of melodramatic "Guurrrl Power" back-patting. In S5, we're back to Angel as the lone dark avenger while his crew stays at the office but it's more likely that Spike is in Angel's zone. Early S2 does a particularly good job incorporating every member of AI into more fight scenes long before the climax.

    Negative: This is more of a complaint on later episodes but Gunn's issues as presented in this ep are never really dealt with. At this point, Gunn's issues are that he's wound too tight and is too angry as he struggles with the demands of leading his gang and that he's traumatized at losing his only family in Alonna. The show "addresses" these issues by having Gunn just move from a leader of his own gang to a follower at AI and to write future eps like Alonna never even existed. On rewatch, it makes this episode frustrating because I never get to see Gunn actually deal with the challenges presented in this ep but instead, these challenges just become a rationale for Gunn to subvert his own story to Angel's. Although, I think you can read the later seasons to say that this was a tragedy in itself.

    For this ep, I agree with Stoney that Cordelia's big speech at the end was sanctimonious. Cordelia's never been in Gunn's position, as a leader of a vamp-fighting gang, as someone who grew up poor, or as someone who lost someone like a sister. She hasn't been a friend of Gunn because she just met him several eps ago. She doesn't even know Gunn well enough to know that he trains with his gang by having mock-fights or what his gang looks like so that she doesn't ram her Ladysmith Axe into some unlucky dude's head. She hasn't fought one day with Gunn and his gang. She never even met Alonna. So, I feel like she has little basis to declare that he's living his life all wrong but she'll show him how to better exist. It's a shame because like Stoney, I did enjoy Cordelia/Gunn's other interactions in the ep especially when it was played for comedy. However once the ep got to the dramatic key interaction, it poisoned the earlier stuff for me. This ep would have been considerably better if the last scene was written so that Gunn came to his own realization that he needs to accept help and Cordelia came to some realization that she's been pushy and presumptive on his life.

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  37. #39
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    Untouched

    Positive: Bethany is subtly connected to Angel. W&H uses dreams and different machinations in order to use their abusive parental figures (Bethany's father, Angel's sort of "mother" in Darla) to corrupt them and turn their special superpowers into tools for W&H. Even though W&H uses the same tactics on Bethany/Angel and even though Angel is closely involved in Bethany's cause to the point that he rescues her from concrete danger but also from herself but still, Angel never connects the dots on his similarities to Bethany. IMO, usually in this kind of a story the protagonist would be able to recognize his mirror in his own project-damsel and the protagonist would actually learn something about himself at the end of the episode. Angel does not. He sees Bethany's issues as entirely her own as he continue to fall into Darla's/W&H's trap. However, we can see that Lilah identifies the similarities between what W&H tried to do to Bethany and what they're currently doing to Angel when she says "Sweet dreams" to Angel after he victoriously takes Bethany from Lilah's apartment.

    Negative: Cordelia bugs me a lot in the "Don't bone my boss" conversation. It's so unnecessary and mean. Why does Cordelia need to take it upon herself to pull aside their traumatized-by-childhood-sexual-abuse client who they're supposed to be helping to crudely scold her to not have sex with Angel? If Cordelia must warn someone not to have sex and experience perfect happiness, she should be warning Angel instead of Bethany. Angel is the one responsible for his detachable curse, not Bethany. Angel is the big strong hero, who should be able to take tough embarrassing conversations. Cordelia and Angel know each other very well; Bethany is still a stranger to Cordelia. I mean, it's disturbing that Cordelia thinks such a conversation is even necessary. Does she really think that Angel would find perfect happiness sleeping with their traumatized, disturbed, helpless client or even that he would sleep with her? I have a dark view of Angel and I don't think so low of him.

    I feel like this conversation could have been less obnoxious and more tied in to Cordelia's and Angel's characterization if it occurred later in the Darla-saga when it would make more sense for Cordelia to take such a dim view of Angel's character and also to feel like she can't talk to Angel so she'll talk to the "damsel." However, that's not the case because this conversation takes place before Cordelia even knows there's a Darla-saga in an ep where Cordelia gives "You can't fire me. I'm Vision Girl" sass indicating a strong level of comfort with Angel which he doesn't really ruin until later in the season. So, I feel like Cordelia just enjoys blaming other women for a sexual dynamic with Angel that threatens Angel's responsibilities instead of blaming Angel for possibly neglecting his own responsibilities. She'll attack Bethany for risking Angel's soul even though maintenance of his soul is Angel's responsibility much like she attacked Buffy in IWRY for distracting Angel from his "help the helpless" mission with their love affair even though it's Angel's responsibility to guard his own mission/business.

    I wouldn't place this as a Negative if I thought Cordelia was indicating flaws central to her character arc. For instance, I think Wesley should have told Angel and Cordelia about his plans to discover Bethany's trigger by taunting her about her abuse- but I wouldn't place it as a Negative because acting unilaterally is pretty central to Wes's characterization and fall. That's good writing. (I also appreciated the motive to discover what was triggering Bethany. That was necessary to treat her. Scolding Bethany for possible sex with Angel did not feel necessary at all.) However, Cordelia frustrates me. A small part of me think that this obnoxious behavior is part of her own arc but most of me thinks that we're just supposed to applaud Cordelia for being protective of Angel and "telling it like it is" with Bethany and I just disagree on every level.

    Cordelia further bugs when she starts by criticizing Bethany for not floating away her potential rapists instead of squashing them. Bethany tries defending herself by saying that Cordelia doesn't understand that she was in fear for life. Cordelia then takes away Bethany's private ownership of her feelings by saying that Cordelia felt everything that Bethany felt when Cordelia had her vision. At this point, Cordelia decides not to continue fighting Bethany's right to self-defense when Bethany was in mortal terror by conceding that the attempted rapists may be better off squashed but doesn't give up an inch of the self-righteous ground by stressing that Bethany better not hurt her and her friends. Thus, Cordelia unfairly suggests Bethany's out to hurt innocent people just because she defended herself with lethal force against alley-attackers. Ugh.
    Last edited by Dipstick; 27-12-18 at 08:23 PM.

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  39. #40
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    Dear Boy

    Positive: I really like Darla's "G-d, I could eat his eyeballs." It carries vicious imagery but also doting, loving imagery as well. Eyeballs are creepy and eating them is horrifying. However, mothers do carry on about how they could eat their children up as in they find them adorable and yummy. Mothers use that phrasing- "I could eat you up." I think both sentiments are there in how Darla describes her fierce disappointment in Do Gooder!Angel. Generally, the Darla/Lindsay scene is very good. I enjoy the subtle filth here:

    Darla reaches out and strokes his fake hand.
    Darla: It's very smooth. - You don't feel anything.
    Lindsey: Not in my hand....

    But LOL, Lindsay feels like he can gain professional advantages with Darla by acting on his very real sexual attraction. But he's basically Jenna Maroney in 30 Rock.



    Lindsay doesn't even know that he's trying to whore himself out to a whore because his sexual attraction to Darla is just as real as his desire to use her to get ahead at W&H. He doesn't have the self-awareness to distinguish between the two. Darla, on the other hand, spent time reflecting on what it is to be a whore and how she's a whore and how she can use that- long after she acquired superpowers putting her above petty pecuniary needs. In all senses, Darla knows what's up with Lindsay.

    Negative: It's odd that the LAPD backed off Angel. Police officers saw a classic crime scene of Angel standing next to a murder victim, after breaking into someone else's home. Kate got a whole SWAT team to go search the Hyperion. The train publicly left the station and many LAPD officers were on Angel's case as opposed to just Kate. Now, Kate is clued into the supernatural so she may be convinced that Angel couldn't have broken into the house as occupied by its owners. However, I don't know how Kate convinced the rest of the officers on the case to back off when Angel looked as guilty as sin when the only deductive reasoning sort-of-convincing her of Angel's relative innocence was vampire-lore.

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