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Being a good father vs your believings.

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  • Being a good father vs your believings.

    It's probably asked before, but what would you've done when you was Angel. He had to choose between saving his son and giving up his freedom and the freedom of his friends or giving his son up.

    Let's all hope that not one of us will ever be in that position, but what if you was ...


    I'm sure that I would have chosen for my child. I believe that being a good parent is linked to being a good person. Which is my #1 priority. It's of course a bad choice, but on that moment you knew that your child would die when you wouldn't choose him while you can have the (naive) hope that it won't be that bad when you take over W&H.
    26
    your child and go to W&H.
    65.38%
    17
    your believings and will let your child die.
    0.00%
    0
    other
    34.62%
    9


  • #2
    I would choose my child. Angel sacrificed himself in order to give Connor a better life.

    As for Angel being responsible for his friends, Gunn had already decided to take the deal and Wesley was certainly acting like he might be open to it when Angel came in and said he'd made an "executive decision" to take the deal. Lorne then went on to congratulate Angel for being all "all growed up." Fred was the only one who showed serious hesitation at the W&H offer. Oh, poor Fred.

    Though Angel making an "executive decision" doesn't take away Fred or Wes' free will to disagree or walk away. I think Gunn and Lorne were on board regardless of Angel's decision, but Fred and Wesley would have followed Angel's lead.

    Still in the end, Angel was faced with the decision of certain pain, suffering and eventual death for Connor or a "deal with the devil" where he stood a fighting chance. After the events of season 4, I believe Angel was so defeated that he'd lost hope for himself. The only bright spot in his life was the belief that Connor would live. I think Angel at that point believed he was damned and the only hope he had for the future was Connor. That's the legacy for a lot of parents, wanting the best for their children.

    I don't fault Angel for his decision. The part I question - was Angel responsible for the rest of his team agreeing to work for W&H? Is he culpable for this decision because of the mindwipe spell that skewed their memories of the past at the exact moment prior to their deciding to join W&H?
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    • #3
      It's a difficult one this. On one hand I can understand Angels anguish and desire for the best for his son, but to basically make a pact with the devil and for all intensive purposes 'sell' your friends souls off to a third party without their real knowledge is a bit dodgy at best. I mean where do you draw the line?

      He took away/altered their memories which I do think is unforgivable really whatever the circumstances.

      As I said I more then understand why he did it, but I can also sympathise with the likes of poor Wesley who felt so confused and betrayed when the spell was broken.

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      • #4
        Illyria and Wesley talk about this in 'Origin'.

        ILLYRIA
        Do you? There are 2 sets of memories—those that happened and those that are fabricated. It's hard to tell which is which.

        WESLEY
        (looks confused, shakes his head)
        Try to push reality out of your mind. Focus on the other memories. They were created for a reason.

        ILLYRIA
        To hide from the truth?

        WESLEY
        (looks pained, looks into Illyria's eyes)
        To endure it.
        Somehow, I think that Wesley is grateful. Somehow and without knowing it, Angel didn't just save Connor ... he also saved Wesley who can deal better with the past now.

        That doesn't take away that mindwiping your friends is a really bad thing, or something that you can take lightly.
        Why Angel didn't give his friends their memories back, is for me still a big questionmark, I think that they would understand. Maybe the calm and peaceful Wesley made Angel think that they were better without those memories. But still ....

        I'm also curious how big the impact was of the loss of those memories for Lorne, Fred and Gunn. Maybe their trust in Wesley would be less strong? But Connor didn't forced those three to change or to develop as a character.

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        • #5
          Poor Angel was stuck in a 'no win' scenario wasn't he really. To make matters this would be Angels only son. Not as If he could create another one sadly, and his love for him must have been immense. He would have done anything to to save him, and by doing what he did to his friends he proved just that.

          I don't feel that Wesley finding some kind of twisted peace probaly didn't even come into Angels thinking though. He was too fixated in what he wanted for Connor then to think of what Wesley may or may not need.

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          • #6
            I agree about Angel not thinking about Wesley (or any of his friends) at that point in 'Home'. The probems around the mindwipe didn't cross his mind until later I think.

            I just watched that scene in 'Home' again, and I don't get the great hate for that episode. The scene between Angel and Connor is amazing and so incredible hard to watch.

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            • #7
              I felt very, very sorry for Angel at that point, and Connor too of course, which is amazing because uptil that point poor Connors character had grated on me somewhat.

              Infact I really only got to really like him when he returned in season 5.

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              • #8
                Oh me too, I always felt that I had to feel sorry for Connor. But he was so difficult that I was not able too. In 'Home', I felt for him and in season 5 and ATF Connor is incredible sweet and funny ... he is becoming one of my favourites.

                I also enjoy Angel and Connor scenes after the mindwipe, Angel seems so happy with Connor around.

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                • #9
                  connor is so massively underappreciated. he's amazing in episodes like a new world (especially all the sunny/angel scenes), benediction (the holtz/angel scenes--the crying), tomorrow (the end), inside out ("you're not my mother!" the darla scene), peace out (talking to cordy), home (the sports store), origin and not fade away.

                  i feel sorry for the kid all through seasons 3-4. sure, he's healthier in season 5, but his pathos and brainwashing is just as interesting to me.

                  the fans owe appreciation to vincent kartheiser, imo.
                  NileQT87
                  The Dark Avenger
                  Last edited by NileQT87; 12-08-08, 12:11 PM.

                  "If there is no great glorious end to all this, if nothing we do matters, then all that matters is what we do."
                  "Nothing in the world is the way it ought to be. It's harsh and cruel. But that's why there's us. Champions."

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                  • #10
                    I never blamed VK for my dislike for Connor ... I think that the writers didn't gave him enough good moments. He did hurt Angel so many times. It was just too much. VK shows in 'Mad Men' that he can make a very unlikable character interesting and pretty likable (*). He should've got a Emmy nomination btw, his acting in last weeks episode was pure gold again.


                    *I'm not the only one who likes Pete ... right?
                    Nina
                    and her haircut.
                    Last edited by Nina; 12-08-08, 02:32 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Oh I totally agree and VK has just been superb in 'Mad Men'! A great, great show.

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                      • #12
                        hurting angel isn't a reason to hate a character. then again, i adore holtz, too. hell, i like warren.

                        because they are really good at playing bastards doesn't make them bad actors or even unlikable, imo. some people are even really good at it and impressive for that reason alone.

                        not enough moments where he's great? i disagree. i find him fascinating in season 4. he's not there to be liked for his warm fuzzies. he's there to be a source of dark existential and brainwashed pathos and a living result of vengeance. in that regard, vincent was wonderful to watch.

                        it isn't about 'ew! evil-cordy and connor! gross! oedipus!'... it's about a kid who DIDN'T experience any of that. what the audience is seeing is not what he'd be seeing or even comprehending its existence. at that point, the one person in the world he hadn't been taught to hate was being nice to him and ultimately a being using him for his existential purpose (remember the glowy soul colonic--at lets not forget they were only 17 1/2 and 22-year-olds--not a huge age difference). and can i just mention that i will continue to defend that connor only thought of angel, darla, holtz and justine as his parents. the others were, at best, aunts and uncles he had never known growing up. his impressions of people aren't what the audience saw.

                        people have trouble getting in his head, i think, even though it's explained quite well what he would know from holtz's parenting. connor was a naive victim.

                        it's not about who hurts my favorite characters... you can hurt my favorite characters and still be a well-done performance who brings a lot to the show (and doing a thankless job of it).

                        all the willow/tara fans who pretty much despise warren, for example, even bring their hatred onto adam busch. i've actually seen 'eww's reverberating from that corner of the fandom that childishly cringe at the idea that adam busch and amber benson are together. another example of a thankless acting job of a very talented actor who played a twisted, moody and dark character to much aplomb.

                        david boreanaz also got a lot of ire for playing another moody, angsty and serious sort of character, same as vincent and adam. there are sections of the fandom who can't stomach that sort of character, and thus, back up their inability to like that necessary character type as an example of bad acting. it's not. it's just not for them... and in many cases, perhaps the actors thanklessly do too good a job at it for them.
                        NileQT87
                        The Dark Avenger
                        Last edited by NileQT87; 12-08-08, 04:37 PM.

                        "If there is no great glorious end to all this, if nothing we do matters, then all that matters is what we do."
                        "Nothing in the world is the way it ought to be. It's harsh and cruel. But that's why there's us. Champions."

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                        • #13
                          In my case it has nothing to do with the actor, I think that VK is one of the best actors in both series. My problem with Connor is also not because I can't deal with dark characters. I could see where he was coming from, I could see the humanity and his trouble ... still I couldn't like him. Why? Because he did hurt Angel so many times ... Holtz, Lindsay etc. are different, Angel didn't love those people and he had not the desire to have a family with those people. Angel never loved anybody more than he loves his son, it's all he has ... the only family he would ever have and he tried so hard to be a good father and we saw Connor turn that down again and again. We saw Angel being hurt time after time. In that case, my sympathy goes to Angel and not to Connor ... and a great performance is what saved Connor from being an unrelatable character, VK gave us the emotions we needed to see Connor as a good person. A bad actor would gave us a flat and mean character without the conflict. I could see the conflicted boy, I could see his point but that couldn't make me like him after everything.


                          BTW I was never disgusted by Connor/Cordelia because of their age difference, I like Gwen/Connor, I love Buffy/Angel and I'm a supporter of Xander/Dawn ... the Connor/Cordelia thing was so bad (for me) because Cordelia was in love with his father ... and not a season before that we saw her giving Connor a bottle, playing with him and being the closest thing to a mother he had after Darla died. We saw Angel, Cordelia and Connor laying on a bed as a little family. And the fact that Cordelia used Connor didn't help either.
                          Nina
                          and her haircut.
                          Last edited by Nina; 12-08-08, 07:50 PM.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Emmie View Post
                            I would choose my child. Angel sacrificed himself in order to give Connor a better life.

                            Still in the end, Angel was faced with the decision of certain pain, suffering and eventual death for Connor or a "deal with the devil" where he stood a fighting chance. After the events of season 4, I believe Angel was so defeated that he'd lost hope for himself. The only bright spot in his life was the belief that Connor would live. I think Angel at that point believed he was damned and the only hope he had for the future was Connor. That's the legacy for a lot of parents, wanting the best for their children.

                            I don't fault Angel for his decision. The part I question - was Angel responsible for the rest of his team agreeing to work for W&H? Is he culpable for this decision because of the mindwipe spell that skewed their memories of the past at the exact moment prior to their deciding to join W&H?
                            Just the thing... Angel didn't just sacrifice himself. Angel sacrificed the free will of everyone that knew about Connor. Did Wes and Gunn and Fred and Lorne still have free will? Sure -- but they no longer had *informed* will. Your raise a question: could the events and history with Connor and everything that had happened given any of them a reason to decide not to go with Angel to Wolfram & Hart? All it has to be is "possible" for it to have been wrong. Besides which, even if they'd gone their own way, they would then either have to get out of the fight altogether or be much less capable of carrying it out -- another choice that Angel would have essentially made for them.

                            Even Connor's new parents and family -- not every moment of a family's existence is pleasant or happy. Maybe Connor's parents remember a time he was in the hospital for days and they were terrified when he was a baby. Moments like that, life experiences like that, are powerful things, and these people got a lifetime's more worth of them shoved into their heads against their will.

                            Willow knew about Connor. So did Faith. Their minds also got ravaged of that knowledge without their consent.

                            And the end result is Angel at Wolfram & Hart -- a situation that led to lots of harm, like the-statistics-name-was-Stacy getting killed when she might not otherwise, or the thousands of dead or enslaved and millions suffering in Hell A as a result of Angel's attempt to extract himself the least effective way possible.

                            [i]All[/b] back down to a choice he could justify because it was for his son. When is it too far, though?

                            Originally posted by Nina View Post
                            I agree about Angel not thinking about Wesley (or any of his friends) at that point in 'Home'. The probems around the mindwipe didn't cross his mind until later I think.

                            I just watched that scene in 'Home' again, and I don't get the great hate for that episode. The scene between Angel and Connor is amazing and so incredible hard to watch.
                            That scene alone just doesn't save the faulty new direction and bad decisions that set it up.

                            Angel may not have thought about the implications -- but neither did Willow in "All The Way".
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                            • #15
                              Correct me if I'm wrong (I don't remember the episode so clearly), but didn't Angel make that deal while Conner was about to blow up a room full of people? I'm not saying that makes Angel's decision the absolute right one, but in the moment, being emotionally drained from the situation with his son, I think Angel made the decision he thought was best. He didn't have the luxury to think things through.

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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Roses-r-Red View Post
                                Correct me if I'm wrong (I don't remember the episode so clearly), but didn't Angel make that deal while Conner was about to blow up a room full of people? I'm not saying that makes Angel's decision the absolute right one, but in the moment, being emotionally drained from the situation with his son, I think Angel made the decision he thought was best. He didn't have the luxury to think things through.
                                i totally agree . he reeeallly didnt have time to think things through
                                if it wasnt life or death, maybe he wouldve chose differentely .he made the decisions soley around the immediate cirumstances

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                                • #17
                                  I'd save my son. I don't think I've ever met a parent who wouldn't.

                                  I'm pretty sure Conner and the roomfull of hostages would be grateful for Angel's choice.

                                  Not too sure how I feel about the mindwiping. Assuming that everyone else decided sign on to W&H independantly of the mindwipe, I guess I might be okay with it. I'm pretty sure Gunn and Lorne would have signed on regardless.

                                  I agree that the mindwipe helped Wesley. It erased all the bad blood between him and Angel, gave their friendship a fresh start.

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                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Roses-r-Red View Post
                                    Correct me if I'm wrong (I don't remember the episode so clearly), but didn't Angel make that deal while Conner was about to blow up a room full of people?
                                    Originally posted by Vampire in Rug View Post
                                    I'm pretty sure Conner and the roomfull of hostages would be grateful for Angel's choice.
                                    This is a very important point to consider. If Angel hadn't taken the deal, would he have been able to save all those other lives?

                                    And perhaps, that is the true deciding factor on whether what he did is acceptable. If you believe human life is to be valued and protected at the inconvenience of another, then, yes, Angel made a fair decision.

                                    Personally I'm torn on the whole choice of family or beliefs. For the record, I'm not a parent.

                                    I know I'd expect family to cross a few lines if they could to save me. However, I also strongly believe that sometimes people cannot be saved from themselves no matter how many lines are crossed. So sometimes, you have to let go of the one you love the most for the sake of others you care about.

                                    As far as strictly denying family based on your beliefs being crossed, I don't think it is right to uphold an ideal to spite someone. An ideal will continue exist whether or not you choose to embrace every moment. Indeed, it should be said that compassion and forgiveness of another may possibly be the greatest ideal to uphold.

                                    I hate that Angel had to cross his friends. But he saved lives, including his son (and son's sanity). And in true AtS fashion, it's not about winning every battle, its about living to fight another day.

                                    Lydia made the punch!

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                                    • #19
                                      I would have done what Angel did, without a doubt. The only son he could ever have was about to commit suicide and Angel found a way to not only prevent this from happening, but to give him a happier, healthier life. I'm not a father but I suspect that wouldn't be a very hard decision for a lot of parents out there.

                                      I don't view the rest of the team as innocents in all this either. Just like in 'Power play' I think Angel gets all the flack for what really were, team decisions. Sure Angel made an "executive decision" but it was made quite clear that the team were going to take the deal and were far easier seduced than Angel. Angel wanted them to take the tour together, before he could even finish his sentence they high tailed out of there with their respective guides, they all walked to the limo on their own account and we saw them considering (some even blatantly stating) taking the deal before Angel even showed up with Lilah. And given their comments in season five, it's in their belief that they took the deal on their own account. They don't blame Angel and his executive decision, in their eyes it was all their responsibility.

                                      Lets not also forget that it was Team Angel who were all trying to convince him to say in 'You're Welcome' when he wanted to get out of Wolfram and Hart, so they're certainly not all innocent in this.

                                      Angel shouldn't have had them mind wiped (though like Nina I don't believe he took the time to actually understand the gravity of this) there's no excuse for that. But, I don't believe it played any significant part whatsoever in choosing Wolfram and Hart for the team. Not only did they all make their decision and opinions perfectly clear before they lost their memories (presuming the moment Lilah says it has been taken care of) but they were all just as eager to take the tour when they had full knowledge of Connor. His existence played no part in their decision whatsoever, it's irrelevant to everyone but Angel. So regardless of wether they know about Connor or not, it doesn't change their mind in anyway about signing on for Wolfram and Hart.

                                      I actually believe somewhat Angel thought he did have a chance to change Wolfram and Hart. Whilst he was certainly cynical I don't believe it was all some elaborate act in 'Conviction' when he gives the speech about changing the place, I think he meant it. And we saw the great lengths he went to attempting to make that dream a reality. It fits with Angel's character that he believes he can change something, he never gives up on lost souls because he believes everyone's capable of change. I see no reason why this line of thinking wouldn't play a little part in how he viewed the Wolfram and Hart situation. And he's not the only one, the whole time believed it somewhat.

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                                      • #20
                                        Waht I find interesting is the parallell between Jasmine and Angel. Jasmine was presented as the enemy to be defeated but from her angle she was violating free will because she felt that mankind would suffer a terrible fate without it.

                                        In the scene in Home Angel actually relates to her. He echos what Connor says about Jasmine wanting to give the world everything, whether they deserved it or not. Angel wanted to do the same thing for his son.

                                        Interestingly Angel when talking to Jasmine argues that our fate has to be our own otherwise we are nothing. She argued why are these abstract principles so important that you would want people to suffer.

                                        We have to look a little deeper. Maybe on some level the High Priest was right, part of Angel's motivation is to get Jasmine out of the way so he can have a relationship with Connor but ultimately he gave him up to give him the life he believed he deserved. There is a personal undertone here that goes beyond morality and it started before the episode Home.

                                        Connor argued that you can't be saved by a lie. Aside from the nihilistic suicidal tendencies, he actually stays true to Angel's existential roots. Angel actually contradicts most of what he has been fighting for over the years. He actually robs Connor of his chance of redemption. Angel assumes that he cannot be saved by the usual method of not giving up. He was actually right when he said Connor isn't dead, but in a way Angel kills him. Our memories are part of what makes us and by taking that away we can essentially become someone else. One wonders whether he could have gone to W&H and tried to work with Connor. Spend millions on councilling etc. Working saving him without destroying who he is. Arguably if we understand why Angel couldn't take that risk then we can understand Jasmine a little better and to be honest, in this scenario, I can definitely relate to the 'hero' and the 'villain.

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