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Angel: She

Cordelia: "Okay, now I'm sure we shouldn't have come here. It smells like flower poop."

Well, I didn't like the Slave Women from Dimension X aspect of the plot at all (bikini-clad women in heat? come on, people) but I thought Jhiera had more chemistry with David Boreanaz than Kate the Cop does. (Although that's not saying a lot.) I liked her voice, the leather and laces, and the facial tattoo, although I thought they could lose the purple eyes. I also liked that you could tell that Angel was turning her on. There isn't enough sex in this show. Hey, there isn't any sex in this show. And Cordelia even got pregnant in the last episode.

I enjoyed the peripheral stuff a lot more than the plot: Poor, unemployed Wesley looking for an abandoned shrimp puff; Wesley and Cordelia showing initiative by searching for compost; Angel's lecture on Manet (it sounded like he actually knew Baudelaire); the cell phone sequence (heroes never have problems with their cell phones); and the two scenes with the coffee beans. The party scenes were terrific; I loved that Angel was so uncomfortable that he went into the kitchen to hang out with Dennis the ghost. And that dance sequence at the end over the credits had me in stitches.

Bits and pieces:

— Jhiera (Bai Ling) is going to be a recurring character, according to TV Guide. (First note from 2005: obviously, the producers realized this episode fell with a thud and changed their minds.)

— We really didn't need the exploding eyeballs, did we?

— Wesley would probably do great with women if he never opened his mouth.

— Angel doesn't dance. One more for the list.


Quotes:

Cordelia: "Hi! Are you having fun?"
Angel: "Sure. This is, ah..."
Cordelia: "Your idea of Hell?"
Angel: "Actually, in Hell you tend to know a lot of the people."

Laura: "So with my Masters degree in Fine Arts, I was able to launch my very own business selling sandwiches downtown from a little cart."

Angel: "Hi, Dennis. How are you doing? Still dead? I know the feeling."

Angel: "Good morning. Is there coffee?"
Cordelia: "They're still in bean form. I thought I ordered the ground. Maybe you could crush the beans with your vampire strength."

Angel: "Really, ah, fun party last night."
Cordelia: "I'm so glad you came. You know how parties are. You're always worried that no one is going to suck the energy out of the room like a giant black hole of boring despair. But there you were in the clinch."

Wesley: "I intend to earn my keep. Oh, and in terms of this keep, by the by..."
Angel: "There is no dental."
Wesley: "Right. Well, I'll floss."

Jhiera: "I thought vampires were killers."
Angel: "They are. I was cursed by gypsies."
Jhiera: "Cursed to help people?"
Angel: "Yeah. Gypsies, they have a strange sense of humor."

Guy: "My shaman has a place in the dessert. He never could turn away scantily clad women in distress from any dimension."

Cordelia: "Wow. Groveling isn't just a way of life for you, it's an art."
Wesley: "I do not grovel. Please don't fire me. What happened yesterday was an anomaly. I'm very rarely taken hostage."

Let's give this one a one for plot and two for characterization. One and a half? Lower?

Billie

Second note from 2005: In retrospect, and in comparison to the rest of the series, this episode is so bad that it makes me cringe. But I still absolutely adore the party scene, the coffee beans, and the lecture on Manet. And the dance sequence was almost enough to save this episode, all on its own.
---
Billie Doux reviewed all of Buffy and Angel, so she knows the plural of apocalypse.

13 comments:

  1. Worst episode of Angel ever. Literally. Bai Ling was so bad in this I can't watch it. Which is unfortunate, because the non-Jhiera parts of the episode are, as you point out, excellent. Angel dancing, Wesley groveling, Phantom Dennis, the art museum.

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  2. I love this episode!... except for the main plot. There were so many good parts to this, and Wesley has already grown on me. I loved Angel and Wesley at that party, and the interaction between Angel and Dennis. I like Phantom Dennis; he needs another dead man to bond with.

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  3. ANGEL RE-WATCH comments begin here! Remember, no spoilers for future episodes. Want to talk spoilers and foreshadowing? Season one spoilers are posted here.

    Come on! Post those comments! Worst Angel episode ever! :)

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  4. I don't think any scene in Buffy or Angel has ever made me laugh as much as the first time I saw Angel dancing - Brilliant. Coffee beans on the floor and Wesley slipping, again very funny... what's not to like??? Well, the story's not great is it and add to that the totally uninspiring/awful character of Jhiera and you get a very poor episode of Angel. As you mention in your note from 2005 Billie, I kind of found myself cringing through it.

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  5. Yeah, not a good plot. Also, very heavy-handed with Jhiera's sexy-badass-warrior look. But on the bright side we get Angel who is sweetly inept at parties, 2 bad dancers, and a great reminder of how annoyingly bad early cell phone coverage was.

    I'm a sucker for charming characters and the Angel/Cordelia/Wesley dynamic is working for me.

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  6. I will go along with the crowd and say that although the main story is simply dire, there are wonderful moments in this episode. The dancing at the end always makes me laugh out loud.

    Is this the worst of the five seasons? If not, it certainly makes the top three.

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  7. It is bad but I feel that the dancing and Wesley groveling and drooling over the warrior/slave/ princess redeemed it.

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  8. I thought this episode was amazing! But it was a little short. Who's Jhiera?

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  9. Interesting that Bai Ling was also implicated in one of the more substandard episodes of LOST ("Stranger in a Strange Land"), again as an unconvincing love interest.

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  10. I'm having trouble getting into Angel. I decided to give it a try since I've gone all the way through Buffy but I was doubtful going in because the characters they spun out of Buffy were far from my favorites. Angel still strikes me as a bit of a cliche, and while Cordelia and Wesley can be amusing as comic relief, they're so extreme they don't feel like real people to me. Everybody tells me it gets better, so I suppose I should stick it out a few more episodes but I'm just not feeling it.

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  11. magritte, this particular episode is terrible, and season one is the worst of the series. It gets better every season. If that helps.

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  12. "There isn't enough sex in this show."
    That's refreshing after having watched Angel's spiritual predecessor, Forever Knight. I just cannot stand that lip-smacking sound anymore from kisses. It really pisses me off now and I don't know why, I barely ever noticed it before. I mean I know I'll come to hate Angel's restraint too for conflating pure happiness with hahpenis, but whatever, I'm happy with pseudo-eunuch Angel for now.
    "Second note from 2005: In retrospect, and in comparison to the rest of the series, this episode is so bad that it makes me cringe."
    This seriously wasn't necessary lol. And I don't agree. I like your original take better, screw that revisionism. Peer pressure! You people swindled me, I was looking forward to finally putting an episode onto my skip list. But it was FINE. I'll never understand the hatred for this episode, at worst the main plot is subpar. Everyone has a hateboner for Bai Ling and I don't get it, at worst she just doesn't do anything for me. It's like the Riley from Buffy hatred. Just strange and off-putting.

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