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Angel: Waiting in the Wings

Angel: "Look, I've been possessed by the spirits of old lovers before. It never goes well."

Despite my misgivings about all these romantic vibes coming out of nowhere, I thought this episode was just terrific.

If they absolutely have to do the Angel/Cordelia thing, at least they're pulling out the big writing guns (you could tell right away that Joss Whedon wrote this one). Charisma Carpenter and David Boreanaz both went for a light touch and I think they pulled it off; I particularly liked the double entendres and their uncomfortable attempts to get the spirits going again. The sight gags were good, too – particularly Angel's strategic placement of the jacket he was holding. I must say, though, that I actually cringed when Angel and Cordelia were all over each other for the first time. It was hard to watch because I'm still just not buying into it. But maybe I'll get used to it; it's not going away any time soon, Groosalugg or no Groosalugg.

There were multiple references to Sunnydale and a refresher course on what Cordelia used to be like, including her ditsy-bitch persona and her crush on Wesley. I particularly enjoyed her snoring and drooling on Angel's dinner jacket at the ballet; it reminded me of how much I've always liked Cordelia.

In fact, there was major cuteness all around. The cast looked exceptionally hot in formal clothes – they're very pretty people – but Fred in particular was a knock-out. And speaking of Fred, I was surprised at how much I liked the Fred/Gunn scenes. I was rooting for Fred's crush to be on Gunn throughout, and voila, I got my wish. It was so sweet, having Fred say to Gunn, "My god, you're so pretty." And I really liked Gunn's reaction to the ballet, even though you could see it coming from miles away.

Poor Wesley! *sigh*

I adore Lorne and I always get a charge out of him flirting with Angel (that whole "stop calling me pastries" thing was so cute.) But how come he had to babysit? Just because he has a green face? And why do they have him making comments about how sexy Cordelia is? C'mon, Angel Powers That Be. Let Lorne out of the closet!

Bits and pieces:

— During the scene where Fred is sitting between Wesley and Gunn and they both go for her hand, I was certain Wesley and Gunn would end up holding hands instead. That would have been cute.

— Phantom Dennis is good with a loofah? Hmmmm.

— I liked the shot of the rubber ducky sitting next to the axe. Sort of an illustration of why the whole baby thing is such a bad plot twist... Billie, stop criticizing. :)

— Fred's first sexual dream was about the Mouse King in the Nutcracker. I'm just going to record that for posterity and leave it alone.

Note from later: Summer Glau!


Quotes:

Wesley: "I'll make my move when I feel the iron is hot."
Cordelia: "Well, get it done, Johnny Reb. So I can hear about something else, and you can do something else besides feeling your hot iron."

Cordelia: "So, you went with the dark clothes today."
Angel: "Ask me why I'm smiling."
Cordelia: "I will, because it's scaring me."

Gunn: "But you got ballet on my Mahta Hari tickets."
Angel: "This is the Blinnikov World Ballet Corps."
Cordelia: "He's been saying that like it has meaning."

Wesley: "I think I've heard of them. Very ahead of their time."
Angel: "Oh, yeah. Yeah. I saw their production of Giselle in eighteen-ninety. I cried like a baby. And I was evil."

Gunn: "No. No! This is not Mahta Hari. This is tutus, and guys with their big-ass packages jumping up and down. This is just... (To Angel) I will never trust you again. The trust is gone."

Cordelia: "Well, we could always get our outfits at Cave-girl's House of Burlap, but that's just so last season. The guys are all renting tuxes. We got to step up."
Fred: "But aren't we, you know, poor?"
Cordelia: "There is a custom amongst my people. It's called buying a dress, wearing it once, and returning it the next day."

Fred: "I love the ballet. I mean, I haven't seen that much, but my family used to go to the Nutcracker every Christmas, and I had my first sexual dream about the Mouse King."

Fred: "And then we have to find a dress for you. Something that will make Angel crazy."
Cordelia: "Fred, sweetie. Angel is crazy."

Lorne: "Can't fight Kyrumption, cinnamon buns. It's fate. It's the stars. Kyrumption is..."
Angel: "Stop saying that. And stop calling me pastries."

Angel: "Sorry they're not closer." Getting five seats together..."
Wesley: "Don't be silly. Best place. We get the whole panorama from here."
Cordelia: "Besides, back here we stand less chance of setting off the 'under seventy' alarm."
Angel: "Back in the day I'd always get box seats. Or I'd just eat the people who had them."
Cordelia: "Don't let's reminisce. We're here. Enjoy."

Angel: "So, somebody want to tell me how we're watching a show starring people who should have died sixty years ago?"
Cordelia: "Well, it's a puzzler. Are there snacks?"

Wesley: "So what are we thinking? Vampires?"
Cordelia: "Well, they're not a deeply tanned bunch."
Gunn: "That would explain the precision and the athleticism. I mean, some of those jumps were... (the others look at him) You know, I was cool before I met you all."
Cordelia: "Dancing vampires. Who's not scared?"

Cordelia: "I'm with Snoopy. The magic of the ballet not really getting to me."
Wesley: "How will the dancers keep time without your rhythmic snoring?"

Angel: "I think I'll just have to go with my patented sudden burst of violence."

Lorne: (singing to Connor) "Go to sleep, lullaby, you've been fed and you're sleepy. You'll be with Uncle Lorne, who in no way resents not being asked to go to the ballet. And is certainly, not thinking, of selling you to the first vampire cult that makes him a decent offer..."

(Low moaning)
Wesley: "Someone's in pain."
Fred: "Either that, or someone's in fun."

Kurskov: "She was my love. She danced only for me."
Angel: "Yeah. You love her that much? Start a website."

Cordelia: "You know, we should probably just not talk about our little adventure. Anything that might have been seen. Anything that might have been, oh, perky."

Four out of four stakes, of course,

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

11 comments:

  1. Just caught this episode again last night, and I was delighted to discover that the cursed ballerina was played by none other than the lovely Summer Glau...

    ...Who incidentally did not look a day younger (or older) than in Firefly. How is that possible?

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  2. Dimitri, she's a terminator, silly. They don't age.

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  3. You guys got me curious, so I checked IMDB. Summer Glau was born in 1981 and would have been around 18 when this episode was filmed.

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  4. Are you sure? Wasn't the ep filmed in 2002? She'd be 21.

    And she's 30 now? Wow!

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  5. Gus, you're right, it was 2002. Summer's bio on IMDB mentions she was on "Angel, 1999" but they meant when Angel began, not when Summer's episode was filmed. So she was 21 here. Her birthday is listed as July 24, so she turned 30 just last month.

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  6. I was also surprised by the Summer Glau cameo. I almost didn't recognize her and had to check IMDB.

    I'm with you, Billie, on this stupid baby plot. I'm doing the Angel rewatch along with the Buffy one and I'm all about Buffy season 6, but have to make myself keep going with this one. There are some great little moments that I love, but none of them have to do with the Holtz/Conner metaplot. This episode was very enjoyable, however. Fred having a romance is way overdue. I don't love the Cordelia/Angel romantic subtext. Yes, she's grown a lot as a character, but it still doesn't work for me.

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  7. I'll admit I haven't read your later angel reviews so I may be repeating a theory, but I always thought of Lorne as pansexual! He makes comments about guys, girls, vampires, probably some demons at some point, so I just thought he was just attracted to attractive people. That explains to me why he flirts with Angel, but also talks about Cordelia that way too.

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  8. Tried to post this before but it didn't appear.
    I agree with Georgia. Lorne is out of the closet, he's just bi or pan, not gay.
    I think it's nice to see a show acknowledge that not everyone is gay or straight.

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  9. Fred looked amazing! And she's finally getting some happiness!

    What really bugged me about this episode, (and partly the previous, but this one more), is that every villain is still after the baby, so they all go out for some fun and leave Lorne as the lone protector. Lorne is awesome and has some fighting chops, but he's not a 'champion' as he keeps saying himself. This was a fun episode, which would have been better without the baby flaw.

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  10. Luv ballet
    'Ate romance
    Simple as

    Alright I better stop crying aboot it, we already have a baby on the show. I completely forgot sweet Groo came back though, that caught me off-guard yet again. Cheered me up at least... Pylean chickens comin' home to roost :D

    I dunno how you people couldn't recognize Summer Glau, she has such a distinctive face to me! Unless youse meant you only saw her in Firefly after her appearance here and didn't know you've seen her once before. Which was likely the case with me too, I can't recall when she first got on my radar.

    Can't believe Joss didn't satisfy his problematic MUSICALS fetish with Buffy, what a waste of shooting footage of dancing Fred before it became disruptive to the plot :( Couldn't they have played some of it over the end credits sequence?

    Good episode, I wish they played Angel-Cordy in such a way that this kind of forced roleplay was the very first thing that made Angel think of considering her as a romantic partner. Wonder if the network was leaning on them and this out-of-the-blue springing is the writers' only way of fighting back. No, I'm definitely reading too much into it lol

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  11. Sorry for doubleposting, but @Onigirli hey moron, there's actually a Deleted Scenes thing from the boxset you just watched where we DID get to see a good couple of minutes of that little scene. In my defense none of the previous seasons even had a Deleted Scenes section which annoys me because there's no way they wouldn't have some footage... but I don't know how that works anyway. Oh, this season also had one for the 'Birthday' episode where we saw a small bit of what a Cordy! sitcom episode would actually play like. Maybe I should post that under the appropriate review but I'd be double-posting twice. Anyway with this deleted scene I understand more why they didn't keep it. It's pretty much just played straight.. which I argue is pretty funny itself but whatever. The Wes/Fred dance once is a definite keeper though, I don't care how oddly it fits with the episode's patrician tone. A curious (and hilarious) performance from Wes

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