Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Angel S5: Eps 13, 14, 15

5.13 Why We Fight
5.14 Smile Time
5.15 A Hole in the World

For my lengthy analyses of these episodes, follow along in Once Bitten.

While last week's episodes were stellar, THIS is the week I've been waiting for. Because after "Why We Fight," we're treated to the single funniest Angel episode of all time, followed by the single saddest. Only a Joss Whedon show could take you on such highs and such lows. First we get "Smile Time," an episode that didn't just elicit laughter from me, but full-bodied guffaws. I mean, the PUPPET is brooding, for goodness sakes. HILARIOUS. Oh, how I love that little puppet man. And Spike's response? Sends me into giggle fits every time I see it.

And then... the laughter is over. For Wesley has FINALLY been united with his true love, only to have her ripped from him in the most horrible way.

"There's a hole in the world. Feels like we ought to have known."

I remember interviewing Amy Acker and Alexis Denisof, separately, and both talked about how difficult those final scenes of Fred were to film. Apparently they begged Joss to do the episode, and he wasn't originally slated to, but he eventually got things switched around, and then pushed both Alexis and Amy to the ends of what they could handle, making them do the scene over and over again until it was so utterly painful to watch. And of course, that's when Joss is happily finished. Could anyone but Joss have written this scene?:

Will you kiss me?

Wesley kisses Fred on the lips tenderly and passionately.

(pulls back, looks down)
Would you have loved me?

I've loved you since I've known you. No, that's not—I think maybe even before.

(leans her forehead against his)
I'm so sorry.

No, no, no.

(chokes on her coughs, crying)
I need you to talk to my parents. They have to know I wasn't scared, that it was quick. That I wasn't scared.
(starts convulsing)
Oh, God.

(grabs her, looks into her eyes)
You have to fight. You don't have to talk, just concentrate on fighting. Just hold on.

(holding onto Wes's shoulders, looks into his eyes, quivering)
I'm not scared. I'm not scared. I'm not scared.
(her grip softens, she can't hold herself up)
Please, Wesley, why can't I stay?
(she goes still as Wes holds her in his arms)

(looks at her limp body in his arms)
(hugs her)

I will never forget the first time I saw this episode. When Wesley first takes Fred back to her place and she asks him to read to her, I quickly looked at my husband and said that if I came down to my final moments and could have any book read to me, it would be Frances Hodgson Burnett's A Little Princess.

And then... that's exactly what he's reading to her a few moments later. I've never had a moment of television feel like it was speaking directly -- and only -- to me, like that one did. I began crying right there, and didn't stop until long after the episode had ended.

Goodbye, Fred. And for anyone who thinks losing Fred is the deepest pain Wesley could ever feel, keep watching.


Marebabe said...

Before watching “Why We Fight”, I guessed that it would have something to do with wartime. Many of you are too young to remember Bob Hope’s televised USO shows, but he would typically introduce a gorgeous/sexy young pin-up/starlet/Bunny and say to the troops, “I just wanna remind you what you’re fighting for!” (Cue cheers, whistles, and thunderous applause.)

I don’t know why I should’ve had the least bit of trouble with all the bouncing back and forth between 1943 and the present, but for some reason I found it jarring and occasionally confusing. You’d think that LOST would’ve trained me better than that! (Actually, now that I think about it, maybe I would’ve done better if there had been a familiar, friendly ‘WHOOOOSH’ punctuating those scenes.)

They took us to the giddy, giggly heights AND down into the Pit of Despair this week. “Smile Time” belongs on the same lofty pedestal as “Once More, with Feeling”. They listed all the puppeteers together in the end credits, but I felt that special kudos should’ve been given to the genius behind the Angel puppet. What a bravura performance! I absolutely loved it!

“A Hole in the World.” [*sigh*]

[*heavy sigh*] What a heartbreaking, tragic story. When someone you love dies, there IS a hole in your heart, and a hole in the world.

I can’t imagine anyone besides Joss Whedon directing this episode. (I learned about what a squeaker that was in Nikki’s book.) To think that he nearly didn’t is just CRAZY! I really want to listen to the commentary on this episode, but I’ll wait just a couple more weeks, in case there are spoilers. There really might be, because I’m thinkin’ that the character of Illyria would be irresistible for them to talk about, since she actually appears in the final seconds of this episode. That was such a jolt, and difficult to process immediately after Fred breathed her last. Speaking for myself, my brain was a bit overcrowded, because mourning takes up a lot of room, and so does being freaked out!

But poor, poor Wesley. ;_;

Page48 said...

I haven't been re-watching "Angel", so I've only seen these episodes once, about 2 years ago. However, there is no way I could forget puppet Angel.

I peed my pants twice watching that episode. Well, not really, but I'm just sayin'. It could've happened.

Colleen/redeem147 said...

A lot of fans don't like Why We Fight, but I love it. I was very interested in WWII when I was younger, and who wouldn't love The Prince of Lies. Oh, Camden Toy.

Did the senior partners want Gunn's brain upgrade to be temporary, or was that the cult members working in W&H (particularly the doctor?)

'Why we fight' is a pretty important question for this season (see Numero Cinqo.)

So, why DID Angel end up in a sewer? He has a nice apartment here, and we know he was in Vegas with the Rat Pack.

That Proto-Initiative guy always reminds me of Cancer Man.

They're going to build Supersoldiers - like Riley. Did Spike remember the mind control stuff when he was captured by the army guys?

They went overboard on darkening James' hair (though it is darker than the wigs they used for William in real life.)

Spike has a habit of stealing coats - something based on Marv in Sin City.

Angel as a soldier - but pre-Seely Booth.

Did Lawson really have any intention of killing the gang. You can see him stop himself from bumping into the chairs.

Oh, Smile Time. They'll later do a Puppet Spike comic for IDW. And have dolls of him and Angel.

That puppet that tells the kid to 'touch it' is particularly disturbing.

Okay, is it wrong that I thought of the Joker before Knox mentioned it?

Once again, Harmony shows she's more observant than she's given credit for by Angel.

This is the episode where my daughter asked, "Why is David Boreanaz a better actor when he's a puppet?"

Where the puppets regular demons who were turned into puppets by the nest egg?

Fred talks to someone on the phone named Tracey - which is Jonathan (Knox's) name on Firefly.

This is the second episode in which David Fury appears in an acting role on Angel. He was also in an episode of Lois and Clark.

That 'nose comes off' led to a lot of porny fan fic.

I think Nina's paw is the best visual use of the werewolf. Less is more.

I'm sorry, but I like like Shells better than Hole in the World. My favourite part of the episode is the Spike/Angel interaction. I was never invested in the Wes/Fred relationship.

I remember Bangels being upset with the Angel chest stabbing, thinking it was making fun of Becoming.

I have trouble with the reveal of Knox as villain. He seems genuinely surprised by the delivery of the coffin. And how did he know for sure Fred would touch it? (Cause that wasn't very bright, and she is.)

The blackberry reference is starting to sound dated.

Spike's not bound to the place - he's bound to the people. I think this is a new thing for him. He's never really had friends.

That scene with 'not this day, not this girl'... 'Winnifred Burkle' is pretty hokey. I can't watch it with a straight face and that's the wrong tone for something that gets so real later.

Wes shooting the guy - well, he's nuts. I think it was supposed to be funny, or show how obsessed he is with finding a cure for Fred, but it's nuts.

Why does Knox help them get a faster plane? Redirection because he knows it won't help?

If Spike's never flown how DID he get to Africa?

I think Fred's death is a cancer metaphor - a foreign entity eating her up from inside.

Maybe I missed something, but how did Angel and Spike get into Lindsey's place without being invited? Eve seems to be living there. Is it because Lindsey has disappeared from detectible existence?

Nurse Brian said...

I'm a big fan of all three of the episodes this week!

For me, "Why We Fight" is second only to S2's "Are You Now or Have You Ever Been" for these period piece-type episodes.

Seeing Spike fight the wee little puppet man into the elevator has me in stitches every time I watch it. And Nina's line when she wakes up with stuffing in her mouth always makes me smile ("Oh my God. I ATE HIM.")

...Now, I'm a sucker for Fred. So when I watched "Hole in the World" when it originally aired, I was devastated. The look in Lorne's eyes and when he hears Fred sing is so heartbreaking to see when I re-watched this episode.

Christina B said...

I think this rewatch might just kill me.
I'll dissolve into a puddle of tears on the floor and that will be my end.

These last two weeks have been INSANE.

Okay...Why We Fight.
Meh. It was okay. It didn't suck, but it wasn't great.
The Prince of Lies was hilarious, however.

Smile Time...I was laughing so hard at times I had to go back and rewatch many parts!
The fight between puppet-Angel and Spike?! OMG, LOL!!!
And Puppet-Angel's little gestures and facial expressions?! EXACTLY like real-Angel! So much goodness!

And then that all came CRASHING down during A Hole in the World.

Joss, you JUST killed off Cordy. And now I lose Fred, too?!
Evil, evil man!!

I sobbed through the whole bedroom scene.
Her boys care about her so much...Ugh, I'm tearing up writing this.

I've been so lucky to stay unspoiled for most of Angel. I had NO idea this was coming...but sometimes, just sometimes, I wish I could prepare myself for this stuff.
I don't know how much more my heart can take!
(Not really. Please, no spoilers. I'd rather feel the pain than be spoiled!) :P

I don't know if that's a real TRUE death or of Fred returns eventually...but IF it is real and she's gone, she got a wonderful goodbye.

But poor, poor Wesley. WHAT is this going to do to him?!

Efthymia said...

OK, "Smile Time": The part where puppets from a TV show are evil and little kids end up with Joker smiles on their faces is super-creepy, and I still consider it one of the creepiest/scariest things I've ever watched on TV. But... I've always found the Angel-becoming-a-puppet thing really ridiculous. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the excellent work done on the puppet and the likeness and everything. As I gradually got immersed in the Whedonverse and read more and more stuff by Nikki or other people I realised that this episode is considered something like a masterpiece and is well loved, and I felt bad about myself for not liking it -there must be something wrong with me! "A New Man" (BtVS 4x12) is also generally considered a good episode and I never liked that either, so I guess it has something to do with main-characters' transformations...

"A Whole In The World" is devastating and Joss Whedon is an evil, horrible man!!!
I remember crying my eyes out when I first watched it, and my heart clenches every time I think about it. I also remember thinking amidst my sadness "That's what you get for being stupid and not choosing Wesley in the first place!" -all the time they could have had together... :(
I don't remember if I had thought about it at the time, but now it really bugs me that after all that happenned with Cordelia (I expressed my complaints last week), they killed off the other main female character in the series. Is this really a Joss Whedon show?

Missy said...

If I havn't made it clear,AtS is the series that makes me die alittle inside EVERYTIME I watch it.

We lose sooooo many characters,Doyle,Holland,Darla,Lilah,Cordy and Fred.(Hell even Connor is mystically killed)

'Why We Fight'

Is a meh ep for me too.I feel like it's Penn(and to a degree James) all over again..but with a less entertaining story.Granted Spike is hilarious and we get a retcon on The Initiative.

'Smile Time'

It's LMFAO!!But seeing parts of Chucky as a child gave me a fear of "Dolls" that work on their own.

Puppet Angel is sooo cute.
Spike & PA's interactions are genius.
Nina fearing that she killed Angel is sweet.
And who can go past Lorne asking for a Gepito while cradaling PA?Lol

but my heart belongs to Fred and her story,'A Hole n The World'(& 'Shells' which we'll get to next week)pains me to watch..but I adore Fred and Fred & Wes and Fred and "Her Boys",that this ep is in my top 10 AtS episodes of all time.
I don't thinks it's an overstatement to say that the boys lose that twinkle in their eyes after this ep,from my point of view honestly their never the same.

She wBrave...and She went out a Hero.

"I walk with heroes,think about that"

From the moment we met Fred she was a hero.

Final 7 Eps...Damn!The rewatch is really nearly over. :/as

Quarks said...

This week is the week I have been waiting for all season, as it contains two of the best episodes of ‘Angel’ of all time. ‘Why We Fight’ is without doubt the weakest episode this week, and I’m not a fan, but ‘Smile Time’ and ‘A Hole in the World’ are ‘Angel’ at its best, for entirely different

As I said, I’m not a big fan of ‘Why We Fight’. It seems to come out of nowhere, and there isn’t anything special about it. It doesn’t contribute much to the overall plot of the season, and it isn’t strong enough by itself to be classified as a fantastic stand-alone. I’m never big fan of episodes which fail to utilise the majority of the main cast and this episode is a case in point, as Wesley, Fred and Gunn’s roles are solely as hostages.

To me, this episode sort of felt like a ‘Doctor Who’ episode, not that that is a complaint; quite often in ‘Doctor Who’ you get episodes where the Doctor is stranded in some kind of spaceship, or facility where the crew members are all dying one by one, and it felt like that.

My biggest problem with this episode is that it feels like it is something we should have known about. Back in ‘Orpheus’ Angel (well, Angelus) had a kind of ‘This is your Life’ type experience with Faith, where we saw moments he was ashamed of. And yet siring somebody wasn’t one of them? Even in this episode he doesn’t seem particularly distressed by what he did, when in ‘Orpheus’ he was ashamed of drinking from an already dead body.

I would love a scene of the Angel Investigations team finding time to play Jenga in the middle of one of the apocalypses they’ve been in.

Was anyone else thinking “You don’t just press ‘submerge’.” when Spike was saying how the submarine couldn’t be that hard to operate.

Then we get to ‘Smile Time’, which a fantastic episode and certainly one of my favourite. In both ‘Buffy’ and ‘Angel’ I have always appreciated the more subtle and sarcastic humour, but of all of the episodes in either show no other episode has be laughing out loud like this one. The title ‘Smile Time’ is well deserved, as I don’t think there was a single scene in it where I didn’t have a smile on my face.

I love Puppet Angel; he is hilarious in every single scene. From the fight with Spike to the scenes with Nina I am constantly laughing, even though as a rule I don’t like puppets. I think it’s just because, of all the characters in ‘Angel’, Angel is the one who should work the least well as a puppet, which makes it all the funnier. My absolute favourite moment in this episode is when Angel turns into a vampire as a puppet; I was in fits when I first saw that and it still makes me laugh riotously.

I can’t be the only one who still has “Self-esteem is for everybody” in my head.

I have one, linguistic, nitpick with this episode and it’s in a conversation between Wesley and Fred:

Fred: So, that’s how he’s been hiding it.

Wesley: No, that’s how he was hiding it.

“Has been” is already past tense (to all intents and purposes) so Wesley changing it to “Was” was fairly pointless. If Fred had said “that’s how he is hiding it”, or Wesley had replied “that’s how he had been hiding it” it would have made sense, but as it is it just really annoys me. I know it’s a small thing, but it just frustrates me every time.

I’d forgotten just how late it was that Wesley and Fred get together. I thought they had at least a couple of episodes of happiness as a couple before tragedy strikes, but apparently not.

Quarks said...

“A Hole in the World” is another phenomenal episode this week, and is probably the most emotional in the whole of ‘Angel’. It was quite hard talking about how much ‘Smile Time’ makes me laugh, as my heart is still aching from this episode. My biggest problem with ‘Angel’ compared to ‘Buffy’ is that there isn’t as many emotional scenes, in my opinion, but ‘A Hole in the World’ changes all that as it is one of the most heart breaking episodes of all time.

Another problem I have with ‘Angel’ compared to ‘Buffy’ is that I just don’t care about the characters that much, certainly compared to the characters in ‘Buffy’. I mean I’ve always liked Fred but, even though she is like the Willow of ‘Angel’, I don’t care for her as much as I do about Willow. Except, apparently I do. Maybe not as much as Willow, but this episode really made me realise that I do really like and really care about Fred, and her death is really heart-breaking. I have always liked Wesley, and part of the reason this episode is so painful is because of him, but Fred’s pain and suffering gets to me as much as his.

Fred’s death is fairly unique in terms of the usual type of deaths in Joss Whedon’s shows, in that it is very slow and very painful. Almost all the deaths in ‘Buffy’ were instantaneous, and the ones that weren’t were very quick. Even on ‘Angel’, where the other deaths, like Doyle’s, are more painful than those on ‘Buffy’ are still over in a few minutes. Fred is suffering for hours before she finally dies, although she does at least get to die in the lover’s arms.

One area in which Fred’s death does fit the normal is that just before she dies she starts a relationship with the person she’s in love with. It was the same for Jenny’s and Tara’s deaths (although they started a relationship again with the person they loved) and similar for Anya’s, Spike’s, Doyle’s and Cordelia’s. Wesley and Fred’s relationship is probably my favourite on ‘Angel’, although in the Buffyverse in general I prefer Willow and Tara.

It was clear that this wasn’t going to be a run-of-the-mill Angel saves the day at the last minute type episode when Fred says “Handsome man saves me.” Characters generally only ever repeat their more iconic, first(ish) episode lines when it is either the finale, they’re suffering from memory loss, or they’re going to die. And seeing as there are still 7 episodes to go to the finale, and there’s no memory loss…

Personally, I really like the scene where Wesley shoots the guy not working on helping Fred. It’s quite sudden and shocking, and once again it shows how Wesley is willing to do anything to save the people he loves.

The scenes with Angel and Spike travelling to the UK are well done, as are those with Gunn and Knox, but the scenes between Wesley and Fred are the highlights. Their final scene, which Nikki was kind enough (or cruel enough) to include in her post, is incredibly emotional and breaks my heart even just reading it.

Overall, this was both a hilarious and heart-breaking week of ‘Angel’, and probably the best overall week in the whole of the rewatch (of ‘Angel’ at any rate). That’s not to say that the remaining episodes are bad – they certainly aren’t. There are still a couple of duds, but many more gems in the remaining 7 episodes.

Nikki Stafford said...

Quarks: Great comments, as always. I'm thinking the difference between "has been" and "was" in the way Fred and Wesley were talking is that "has been" indicates that he still is hiding it. Was puts it squarely in the past, as if Wes is making the suggestion that it's no longer hidden, and that he's been caught.

I don't know if Cynthea Masson, who was part of the Buffy Rewatch, is still reading these, but she did a paper recently on Why We Fight and she might be able to make us like it more. It's never been a favourite episode of mine at all, though I always giggle when Angel yells, "Prince of Lies!" angrily. The formality of using the guy's full name -- and such a ridiculous name it is -- is just somehow hilarious to me. ;)

Quarks said...

Thanks, Nikki. I appreciate that it's probably grammatically correct and I understand what was meant by it, but it just doesn't sound right to me. I think partly it's because a) that is still how he's hiding it, it's just that Wesley and Fred have worked out the secret and b) Fred is fairly intelligent and has been aware of the conversation that she's been having so knows that they now know his secret, and doesn't need Wesley to point that out. But it is just a very small nitpick in a fantastic episode.

Dusk said...

a few weeks ago I said Angel and Spike don't agree much, except on one thing, you can see it building at the start...their love of Fred. This is the 1st time we see them truly work together.

When Amy first joined I said once she arguably has the best acting range of either cast...get ready, AHITW is just the start of a brillant run for her.

I consider it and Shells to be a two-parter, for some reasons that are obvious now, and a few that will become clearer in the 2nd episode.

Wesley shooting the guy and Lorne drawing blood are cool moments, but it also shows that the darkness of W & H is starting to change them. Fred realized this in bed, Angel heard it through Cordy, and Gunn has realized the cost of cutting corners via W & H.

If Soul Purpose is as to Restless, then A Hole In The World is as to The Body.

Did the circle shot remind anyone else of the one in Chosen?

I don't find Spike and Angel's lines in that corny.

They wanted Giles to say their was no way to save Fred, so the audience would instantly believe it, but it was too expensive to fly him out, so they created a character who couldn't lie instead.

Dusk said...

Good job puppeteers, it acts so much like David.

Joker refrences, potty-mouthed puppets, the actors really cracking up. It was awesome.

Puppet Angel is still tougher then Edward Cullen.

Why We Fight is Ok, I like when they add on to the vamp mythos, but it feels uneven, a dark-haired Spike is wrong. And why does Angel get beat down so easily?

Cynthea said...

Hi again everyone--I saw Nikki's reference to my paper, and I thought I'd respond. I too did not like "Why We Fight" initially. However, when I used it as the basis for a paper, I came to appreciate its importance in the Whedonverses. To give you an idea of my basic argument, I will quote a section of the introduction here: "Like so many other “bad guys” in the Buffyverse, depictions of Nazis upset comfortable assumptions about good and evil. Nazis are not merely caricatures of evil used as an easy reference for viewers; rather they provide a human point of comparison amidst the panoply of literal demons. The Buffyverse blurs distinctions not only among demons and humans but also between bad-guy Nazis and good-guy Americans, thereby exposing the hypocrisy of a government and a nation that espouses “the land of the free” while simultaneously exercising its military might to maintain its ascendency." For those of you who might like to read more, here is the article citation: “‘Evil’s Spreading Sir . . . And It’s Not Just Over There’: Nazism in Buffy and Angel.” Monsters in the Mirror: Representations of Nazism in Post-War Popular Culture. Ed. Sara Buttsworth and Maartje Abbenhuis. Santa Barbara and Oxford: Praeger, 2010. 179-99. Print.
More in next post...

Cynthea said...

To continue regarding papers...
"A Hole in the World" is one of my favourite episodes. I have written about it a few times, but the paper for which it was a focus involved the effect it had on my emotions. Like Christina B., I became a "puddle of tears" on my first viewing! Therefore, I used the episode for a chapter of a book on how television makes us cry. (The paper focuses on the four episodes that made me cry the most.) If anyone is interested in reading more, here is the citation: “‘It’s a Thing We Do’: Crying with Buffy and Angel.” On the Verge of Tears: Why the Movies, Television, Music, Art, Popular Culture, Literature, and the Real World Make Us Cry. Ed. Michele Byers and David Lavery. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2010. 114-24. Print.

Also, FYI, for anyone who plans to attend SC5, the Slayage conference, I will be focusing on "Smile Time" for my paper.

In other words, the episodes of this weeks's rewatch are quite important to me both as a fan and scholar. I am glad to see from your comments that they also moved you from laughter to tears--the brilliance of Whedon, I think.

Suzanne said...

This was a great week for Angel. My husband, son, and I really enjoyed watching "Why We Fight" again. It is an interesting story with some funny moments. It isn't the greatest of the Angel episodes, but it is the type of episode that provides an enjoyable hour of television. I also liked the actor who played the solider. He did a good job with his role.

Smile Time is really great. I agree that it is extremely creepy when the puppet speaks to the boy through the television in the beginning. That puppet is one of the best villains they have had on the show. I especially enjoyed hearing him and the other puppets swearing all the time. The puppets were really well done, and, of course, the Angel puppet was incredible. It was really unbelievable how well they captured him with the puppet. I can never get enough of seeing Spike's reaction to the Angel puppet and the fight scenes they have. Their relationship is really fun and makes it so worthwhile that he was brought to Angel this year. I can't believe it when I actually read comments on other forums with people complaining about Spike being on Angel.

Which brings me to "A Hole in the World." Wow! This episode got to me again even though I knew what was coming. The dedication of the "boys" to Fred was great. I really liked how each one had a very real connection to her so it didn't seem phoney that they were all having their say. Even Spike bonded with her as soon as he appeared. The one that got to me the most, though, was Lorne. I am so glad that he finally got to have a really great and important scene this season since his character seems to have been pushed to the background a bit. I loved his threat to Eve.

Wes and Fred's scenes were very powerful. I am not one to cry a lot while watching TV, but these scenes choked me up. All I could think about was how much time they wasted. Why or why does Joss feel the need to rip apart every great love on his shows. Doesn't anyone ever get a happy ending? Couldn't they have had at least one perfect day before this happened?

Lastly, the scenes with Angel and Spike fighting together were priceless. They are really like brothers in so many ways. They can't live with each other or without each other, it seems.

Nikki Stafford said...

Thanks so much for posting, Cynthea! I was glad you could give us an argument for appreciating this episode upon further reflection. ;)

RickR said...

Oh man, Fred's gone, and Illyria makes her appearance. Who knew (at least at the time) that Amy Acker had the chops?
I think Illyria might be my favorite character on "Angel". It's a tribute to how well the show pulls off her character that she seems like she had been a part of the storyline for much longer than she actually was.

"A world of shrimp". Illy and Wes for King and Queen of the prom!

Blam said...

Angel 5.13 "Why We Fight"

I think I like this episode more than most folks rewatching. The fact that ensouled Angel might sire a vampire who retains a spark of his own soul is an interesting thought, which — along with the particular period (and submarine) setting — makes this hardly just a retread of the return of lovelorn whassisname from earlier in the series.

Angel: "You're a Nazi."
Spike: "What? Oh — No. I just ate one."

Nostroyev: "I will tear you open and play 'Coachmen, Spare Your Horses' on the lute of your entrails."

How interesting that Angel protests that he will not get stuck on the bottom of the ocean and Spike protests that he will not be experimented on by the American government — both of them fall prey to such fates nearly 60 years later.

Angel 5.14 "Smile Time"

The slo-mo walk with Angel as puppet is hilarious.

Angel: "She asked me to breakfast."
Wesley: "Breakfast? (pauses) Right. How did you respond?"
Angel: "Well... of course, I... (clears throat) ignored it completely, changed the subject, and locked her in a cage."

Angel: "I do not have puppet cancer!"

Polo: "We eat babies' lives!"
Groofus: "And uphold a certain standard of quality edutainment."

Nina: "Are you okay?"
Angel: "I'm made of felt. (removes nose) Ad by doze cubs off."

Groofus: "Our top story this morning: Two plus two is four. And, in related news: Four plus four... is eight!"

Spike: "Is there a Geppetto in the house?"
We get just the latest in a long line of such analogies in Angel — usually, though, they're to Angel or Spike being an ensouled vampire who longs to become a "real boy" again, rather than a literal puppet. The Blue Fairy is referenced in "Soul Purpose" and Cordy calls Angel Pinocchio in "To Shanshu in LA".

Angel 5.15 "A Hole in the World"

Fred: "They reproduce by vomiting up crystals that attract and mutate the microbes around them to form eggs."
Wesley: "Are you trying to turn me on?"

Angel: "You and me. This isn't working out."
Spike: "Are you saying we should start annoying other people?"

Uh... Why do they think they'll find Lindsey in the apartment? Angel saw him get scooped up into big hole in sky.

Lorne: "Oh — And anything by Diane Warren will also result in your death. Well... Except 'Rhythm of the Night'."
I'm with Lorne (on both counts — I never knew she wrote "Rhythm of the Night").

Knox: "You think I'd have my god hatched out of some schmuck?"

Joss on Spike and Angel: "I have never seen a more beautiful romance."

Liz's Journal said...

This was a very interesting episode that replayed the same issue from various ”BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER” episodes like (3.19)”Choices” and (5.22)”The Gift” and ”ANGEL” episodes like (3.16)”Sleep Tight” - namely the task of making a choice for the need of the few or the many. And the choice that Angel had to make was whether to save Fred from death and the growing influences of a demon that had infected her body, or to ensure that the world would remain safe. Judging from the reactions on the forums when the episode first aired, not many agreed with his choice. I did not condemn Angel's choice. I believe that he had made the right one . . . just as Buffy had made the right choice for her in ”The Gift”. It did not really matter if the needs of the many were more important than the needs of the few, or vice versa. What mattered was that each person had to make the choice that was more important to his or her heart. For Buffy, Dawn was more important to her; and for Angel, sparing the world from destruction. Or perhaps being a champion was more important to Angel. However, if the choice had been between . . . say . . . Connor and the world; I suspect that Angel would have chosen Connor.

On the other hand, I have always held a low opinion of the Wesley/Fred romance. Watching them share a kiss following their victory over a demon around the beginning of this episode, led me to conclude that watching a 30-something man and a 20-something woman act like teenagers in love seemed a little boring . . . and very saccharine. realize that many Jossverse fans tend to view Wesley and Fred’s romance as idealized, I never could accept that prevailing view. I simply found their relationship boring and somewhat infantile. It had an uneasy mixture of a high school romance and incest, due to Wesley’s habit of treating Fred as part-lover and part-daughter. It was not surprising to me that a dying Fred had expressed confusion at the reasons behind Wesley’s feelings for her. Also, her death scene was one of the most unbearable I have ever experienced on television. In fact, I found it so excruciatingly slow that I was unable to experience any compassion or sadness over her death. I simply felt relieved when she finally died.