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Angel: The Girl in Question

Spike: "How do you say 'wank off' in Italian?"

I laughed out loud through most of this one, but it left me with a bad taste in my mouth.

Every scene with Angel and Spike just sparkled for me. The opening scenes in the office and the plane were great; the best was the two of them comparing notes on how many times they've each saved the world.

But I didn't like the thought of Buffy, or perhaps more appropriately, the writers, treating these two incredibly hot vampires who have gone through so much for Buffy like a couple of Shemps. I kept thinking of the words "impotent" and "ridiculous" and "we get no respect." Even Angelus in the 1894 flashback seemed like a comic figure, and Angelus is NOT a comic figure.

What's with introducing a new character this late in the game? True, we never saw the Immortal (or Buffy), but he's supposed to be Angel's arch nemesis, and we've never heard of him once in the past eight years? And he's cool enough to make Buffy forget Angel and Spike? Buffy's absence was a gaping hole. This episode really needed Sarah Michelle Gellar, along with some scenes with the three of them and some genuine emotion. I usually love flashbacks, but the 1894 flashbacks felt like a cheat because they were basically just used to establish the character of the Immortal, not to tell more about our perverted and beloved vampire family. Is this how we're going to say goodbye to Darla and Drusilla? Cheating on their guys and sighing over some character we've never met?

Yes, as Andrew said, it's time for Angel and Spike to leave Buffy behind and move on. But does it have to be like this? I might have liked this episode a lot better if there was another season coming. It gave us more of Angel and Spike as partners with a long, complicated past relationship, and put paid to questions about Buffy. But having it so close to the end made it feel like a waste of time.

Enough bitching about the A plot. The real story here was Wesley, who had to face the doppelganger of his beloved Fred and the happy ignorance of Fred's lovely parents. The scenes with Illyria doing her Fred imitation – especially the one where Trish was hinting that Wesley should date her – made the whole situation even more poignant. Illyria actually thought that she had Wesley going. She really doesn't get people, least of all Wesley.

If the series has to end, can't they somehow bring Fred back for Wesley before he implodes? Please, please, please?

Bits and pieces:

— Angel described Buffy as blonde with blue eyes. Buffy's eyes are hazel. That must have been on purpose; I don't think the writers would have made a mistake like that. Interestingly enough, Spike didn't correct him.

— The Immortal had sex with Darla and Drusilla at the same time, and Angelus said, "You never let us do that!" I take that to mean that Angelus and William had tried for some four-ways? Boggles the mind.

— If we couldn't have Buffy, it was nice to have the new and improved Andrew essentially filling in for her. At least it wasn't Dawn.

— I loved the brief 1950s beatnik flashback to Spike and Drusilla saying "Ciao."


— Ms. Bianchi and her wardrobe malfunction waiting to happen was funny, but forced. I kept thinking, stereotype!

— There were beaucoup de references to past episodes, like Angelus and his nuns, the Mayor, Jasmine, Nikki Wood, even the fact that Angel doesn't dance. ("Dancing. Why did it have to be dancing?") There was an interesting new spin on Angel and Acathla in "Becoming, Part 2," although I'm sure we weren't meant to take it seriously.

— That demon referred to Angel and Spike as Americans. They may live here, but as far I know, they're not citizens.

— The Italian Goran demons with ears stuck in their cheeks were cute, and the Bring me the Head of the Capo di Famiglia subplot was slapstick funny. I especially liked the Goran demon who was in love with the Immortal pointing his gun at the bag. ("You're just his lackey." "I should be so lucky.")

— Okay, let's talk about the Immortal. According to what we learned in this episode (and he's certainly never been mentioned before), the Immortal is at least 400 years old, has great eyes and a great chest, spent 150 years in a Tibetan monastery, climbed Everest several times, doesn't use magic, and likes to cuddle. And as Angel said, he's eating cookie dough.

— In this week's hair report, it seems that Gunn's return to his old look is permanent. I liked him in his cool lawyer duds, but it's good to have the old Gunn back.

Quotes:

Angel: "We don't want to be rushing into this thing half cocked."
Gunn: "As opposed to the full cock that's been working so well for us?"

Illyria: "How am I to function with such limitations?"
Lorne: "Have you ever tried a Sea Breeze?"

Illyria: (about the plants) "I can no longer hear the song of the green."
Lorne: "You think that includes me?"

Spike: "The Immortal?"
Angel: "I mean, come on!"
Spike: "She's smarter than that."
Angel: "She'd never fall for a centuries old guy with a dark past who may or may not be evil."

Angel: "Ours is a forever love."
Spike: "I had a relationship with her, too."
Angel: "Sleeping together is not a relationship."
Spike: "It is if you do it enough times."

Only two more episodes until The End,

Billie
---
Billie Doux reviewed all of Buffy and Angel, so she knows the plural of apocalypse.

7 comments:

  1. Gah! I remember disliking this episode back when it first aired, and I'm sad to report my opinion hasn't changed the second time round. Reducing a rich culture to a series of degrading stereotypes may be hilarious to Hollywood writers, but my girlfriend at the time, who grew up in Italy, almost threw the remote at the TV and I, who didn't, almost beat her to it.

    As Billie points out, the highlight of the episode is Illyria impersonating Fred. I like her line about wanting to "experience" stuff with Wes. Was that a demon come on? I'm pretty sure it was.

    The Fred/Wes/Illyria thing has to be one of the weirdest love triangles ever to grace network television. I don't think Wes is indifferent to Illyria either. Last episode, he saved her life even though destroying her might have freed Fred's shell.

    I wish the series had gone on to explore this relationship further.

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  2. At least we now know that Buffy was never with the Immortal. Stupid Andrew.

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  3. Well, yeah..lots of stereotypes. :( bad Angel. But while some of the European/Italian items were forced or inauthentic, I did really enjoy the music in this episode. I like to look at it as just the writers/scorers throwing us for a loop when the characters are in a new setting. Ah the magic that was season 5...

    Also love the line where the ears-on-face demon says of the Immortal. "Maybe she likes the cut of his trousers." Reminded me of Glory's scabby minion's line about doctors scrubs being 'flattering drawstring pants.'

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  4. I personally love this episode ! It’s hilarious. And a nice break from the very dark season. I’m actually watching it now on Jan 3 2020. Buffy and Angel never get old for me!

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  5. Somehow, this is one of the highlights for me in this season. I find it hilarious. Ms Bianchi and her "we shall speak of them no more" - LOL!

    I think it might have helped if this episode had been a bit earlier in the season? When this aired, every Buffy/Angel fan already was in withdrawal mode for their beloved Buffyverse, and it didn't seem right to have a funny episode this close to the end.

    But when I am re-watching Angel, this stands out for all the right reasons. It is just so much fun.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XoScqaaXTJ4

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  6. But it was just a bit of fun! Oh you're probably right, as usual

    Illyria: (about the plants) "I can no longer hear the song of the green."
    Lorne: "You think that includes me?"
    lol

    @Unknown: "And a nice break from the very dark season."
    I didn't need a fucking break! I was so into it in a way I wasn't with season 4's relentlessness. They're doing such a good job in this final stretch of the run. Cannot get enough of it. I'm so proud of them.

    The episode was alright, the subplot with Fred's parents is really good. Illyria thinking of experimenting with Wes is a little too soon for me, and probably would not have happened yet with a season 6 in store. Sigh... anyway, I'd rank it the same as Numero Cinco. I did feel a twinge of sadness at seeing Dru and Darla again for the last time. I don't need to see Buffy again unless it's to see her successfully maneuver Spike and Angel into consenting to a threesome.

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  7. Onigirli, I love this season of Angel. It's my favorite.

    I don't need to see Buffy again unless it's to see her successfully maneuver Spike and Angel into consenting to a threesome. Lol. Thanks for this one. :)

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