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Angel: Unleashed

Gunn: "So. Werewolf girl. Think you got a shot?"
Angel: "She gave me a look."

This episode certainly held my interest, but I wasn't quite sure how to take it. Was it just your garden variety stand-alone werewolf episode, or is Nina Ash going to be a continuing character? Is she intended as a possible love interest for Angel, who has described his track record with "the whole man-woman thing" as a "tragic farce?" She's a supernatural blonde teenager, which is certainly his type, right?

There was a lot of fun stuff. The "you're a monster, I'm a monster too" conversation with the forehead joke was probably my favorite scene ("So what, you're like a Frankenstein?"), and I also liked Fred's attempts to explain Angel's romantic problems to Nina. We got a lot more detail on what it's like to actually turn into a werewolf, too – the heightened senses, the hallucinations, the craving for raw hamburger, and what garnishes are appropriate with a light truffle sauce.

Geez, I can just see Angel dating a werewolf. Perhaps he should talk with Willow. Did you notice that there was an entire episode about werewolves, and no one mentioned Oz? Although I'll bet the werewolf suit in the beginning of the episode was probably a recycled Seth Green costume.

The secret nighttime L.A. Scooby picnic meeting was fun. The unspeakable gourmet society was sick; perhaps this episode should have been called, "To Serve Werewolf." At least Crane's "bistro of the bizarre" is now out of business, or next month I would have been worrying about our other interesting guest star, John Billingsley (Dr. Phlox from Enterprise.) I liked him at first; I was kind of hoping he'd stick around, even though he already has a full time job on UPN. I particularly enjoyed his rendition of "Jesse's Girl." Lorne's employee screening-for-evil sessions are turning into a great continuing joke.

Everyone still thinks that Gunn may be a spy for the Senior Partners, and he's convincingly touchy about it. Is this skillful misdirection? I mean, it's so obvious that Gunn may be working for the Senior Partners that acknowledging it every week will make us think that maybe he isn't, right? Gunn looked great with the suit and the rifle, by the way. It's a good look for him.

Fred was key this week, trying to help Nina deflect sister Jill's anger, and figuring out that Dr. Royce slash Phlox was a bad guy. But I was frustrated that she didn't help poor Spike, who is slowly fading into a hell dimension. Why is Spike so stubbornly fixated on Fred? I can understand him not wanting Angel to know about his problem ("You know that whoosh thing that you do when you're suddenly not there any more? I love that") but why not ask Wesley, the LA version of Giles, for help?

Bits and pieces:

— Angel actually killed werewolf guy at the beginning. Is he killing more lately, or is it just me?

— Andy Hallett looked a lot thinner in the scene where he was, coincidentally, calling himself Jenny Craig for the soul. I hope he's okay.

— Werewolf connoisseur Crane mentioned that there is no such thing as leprechauns, a standing Buffy joke. And Wesley referred to the Initiative. "An underground, monster-hunting, military organization. It's happened before."

— I really liked the wrap-up with drinks and Chinese food in Angel's apartment at the end of the episode.

— There has been a noticeable lack of quality Wesley and Lorne screen time so far this season. But it's early yet, and there has been Spike, so I forgive them.

— In real life news, there was a royal Buffy/Angel wedding this week. Alexis Denisof and Alyson Hannigan got married. Isn't that delightful? Congratulations to both of them.


Gunn: "I made a deal. We all did. Seems like I'm the only one who's willing to accept that. Everybody here got something out of this."
Angel: "Fear, mistrust, a great motor pool."
Lorne: "I got the Nancy Sinatra collection. Original 45s."
Wesley: "I did get a rather nice pen. Sterling. Has my name on it. Which is not the point at all."

Spike: "A lot of fuss over one girl. Other things to do around here. Important things."
Angel: "You know that whoosh thing that you do when you're suddenly not there anymore? I love that."

Nina: "You didn't wake up and find out you're a monster. You don't know anything."
Angel: "I'm not a werewolf like you, but I know what it's like. I'm a monster, too."
Nina: "So... what? You're, like, a Frankenstein?"

Lorne: "Whoa, watch it there. Just passing by and got splashed with a heap of grouchy. Got to tell you, Angelkins, that extra weight is not looking so good on you. I'm talking about psychic pounds, pumpkin. Why don't you consider me the Jenny Craig for the soul, huh? So let's hear it."
Angel: "I'm not going to sing."
Lorne: "Couldn't bear it if you did. No, it's talking you need. Or maybe a shoulder to..."
Angel: "I'm not going to cry, either."
Lorne: "I was going to a leaning place. Okay, Atlas, how about a shrug?"

Angel: "What do you got?"
Royce: "Usual suspects. There's the sacrificers, whackos who want to rid the world of abominations, and werewolf packs looking for new recruits. Then there's the paranormal sporting groups..."

Two out of four stakes. Anyway, forget werewolves. The preview for next week practically had me salivating,

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

1 comment:

  1. Slowly, very slowly getting used to Angel's new hair. But I think that's because it's already starting to look a little different from that pompadour in the premiere. I hated it.

    But fucking Spike's getting paired off yet again now with Fred for wholly inexplicable reasons. Like you said, understandable to stonewall Angel but not everyone else too

    "— Angel actually killed werewolf guy at the beginning. Is he killing more lately, or is it just me?"
    We here at Wolfram & Hart like to call it expressions of MERCY

    "— Andy Hallett looked a lot thinner in the scene where he was, coincidentally, calling himself Jenny Craig for the soul. I hope he's okay."
    D: Maybe that's when he started having his tooth problem? I've only ever had the mildest of toothaches but even that was sometimes enough to kill my appetite except for the bare essentials


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