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Angel: Harms Way

Harmony: "Ah ha! The smoking thermos!"

This one was all about Harmony's point of view, like "Storyteller" was about Andrew's and "The Zeppo" was about Xander's. (Some of the music even reminded me of "The Zeppo.")

One of the longest running fringe Buffyverse characters, Harmony hasn't changed much in eight years, even after becoming undead. She's still remarkably shallow and self-centered, as well as being a few tacos short of a combination plate. She still wants to be popular, as well as Angel's indispensable girl Friday. Instead, she's a glorified gopher, nobody in the office really likes her, and Angel is a constant grumpypuss around her. The only reason she's on the inside instead of the secretarial pool is because she went to high school with the Slayer, and because she's a known quantity as far as Angel is concerned.

The episode as a whole was cute and quite funny, and Mercedes McNab did her usual excellent job. I kept feeling sorry for Harmony, although by the time we were nearing the end, I also sort of wanted her to shut up, calm down, and stop hitting people over the head. This episode doesn't quite compare to season two's "Disharmony," which was much better. I suspect Harmony is more fun in smaller doses.

The Wolfram & Hart recruiting commercial with the zero tolerance policy was my favorite part ("If you don't kill, we won't kill you.") I also adored the chopsticks fight scene in the employee lounge. But I was mildly disappointed by the way the Buffy situation was handled. Spike gave up his quest very easily, and that's out of character for the Spike who fought so hard for his soul and sacrificed his life for love. Don't get me wrong – I certainly prefer Spike on Angel instead of off-camera somewhere in Europe – but I wish they'd come up with something that worked better for me. Harmony trying to bond with Fred seemed unworkable, too. The two of them are night and day, literally.

It was interesting that Harmony was "passing" for human, and that she referred to non-vamps as "straight." The fact that there was a guy (perhaps from Non-Human Resources?) checking vamps for human blood consumption implied that there are many other vamp employees working there – not just Angel, Spike, Harmony and the late, unlamented Tamika. If soulless vamps are just regular guys with long teeth that hold down jobs and drink pig's blood, they're sort of not monsters any more, are they? As Gunn said in "Disharmony," "Don't we kill them any more?"

Bits and pieces:

— As a lifelong sci-fi fan, I recognized two of the evil corporations in the recruiting video: Yoyodyne is from Buckaroo Banzai, and Weiland Yutani is from Alien. I couldn't place Newscorp, but according to my Google search, it's Fox's news division.

— Spike started to thank Fred for believing in him, but stopped before it got out of his mouth. We all know what that was in reference to.

— Angel and Spike showed cuts and bruises from their climactic fight in "Destiny." Reminded me of Buffy and Faith.

— Harmony's apartment is pink and yellow. That fits.

— Harmony's to do list: "Big demon summit; remind security of summit; arrange transportation; return camel; confirm catering."

Quotes:

Fred: "There haven't been any side effects since you recorporealized, have there?"
Spike: "A bit of a hangover, but that's to be expected after all the drinking."

Spike: "Any message for Buffy?"
Angel: "Tell her you're a moron."

Fred: "The size and depth of the wound indicate a female vampire."
Harmony: "Or gay!"
Fred: "Uh, it doesn't really work like that."

Two out of four stakes,

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

2 comments:

  1. That line by Tamika " my lips sealed, the key , lose it" shudder was horrid. but a fun episode still

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  2. *Unpleasant Denethor sneer* Ah, I see... a chance for Harmony to show her quality.
    Actually I liked this episode just fine, I don't know what's happening to me. It definitely was the weakest of the limelight-type episodes but... it breezed by pretty quickly for me. Previous episode was excellent but I found myself looking at the clock several times. I don't know.

    The chopstick scene made me wonder about how much wood a vampire's heart needs to be staked by to die from it. Somehow it just feels wrong that a piece of splinter piercing enough should be cause for concern.

    I still remember hating Harm for reveling in Cordelia's "fall from grace" when uh... I forgot what happened. When she was outed as dating Xander? Or maybe when he cheated on her. But yeah the hatred didn't stick, so I didn't really get to enjoy Harm being subject to that crap herself.

    >>"— Angel and Spike showed cuts and bruises from their climactic fight in "Destiny." Reminded me of Buffy and Faith."
    Very cool. That was an awesome fight too.

    >>"Spike: "Any message for Buffy?"
    Angel: "Tell her you're a moron.""
    Seeing this singled out as a text quote is funnier to me than hearing it.

    @Anonymous: Oh? I couldn't tell what was so bad about that line reading.

    Anyway I share some of the mild disappointment towards the motivation behind Spike not moving on.

    Oh, there was something incredibly funny to me about how what sounds like a word-less shriek had a sentence translation over the phone. I couldn't stop laughing at the effect of it. I loved those banshee-like demons.

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