Tuesday, March 23, 2004

Great news for us Angel fans: before the series ends at the end of this season, we can look forward to appearances by several beloved characters from Angel and Buffy: Darla, Dru, and Dawn, and possibly Buffy herself. [Alas, no. -3/25]

Speaking of Angel, it's been in top form this year, after an excellent fourth season. It just seems to get better and better. My personal favorite episode this year has been "Harm's Way", a story told from the POV of Harmony, a character who's been around since Buffy season 1 but has always been treated like a dumb blonde joke, even though the whole point of Buffy was to look past the blonde stereotype. Anyway, it was a radical move, and the episode is hilarious, a mystery that uses repetition to create great laughs (plucky Harmony, trying her best to reform, greets an unfriendly neighbor with determined friendliness, only to get the dog's growl each time; she ties up and tosses coworkers in a closet, apologizing, but explaining she has to clear her name before she can let them go free). In the end, she has better luck solving this one than Angel often does! (Incidentally, the episode features a great song, "Hey, Sailor!" by The Detroit Cobras, a fun, fantastic rock band that covers more obscure 50s/60s songs. They're one of my new favorites.)

My other favorite episodes this year include: "The Cautionary Tale of Numero Cinco" (a great single-episode story about a team of legendary Mexican wrestling brothers who, like Angel, fought evil), "Lineage" (about Wesley and his difficult father), "Damage" (about a wayward, disturbed slayer), "You're Welcome" (Cordelia wakes from her coma to help renew Angel's sense of purpose), and "Smile Time" (evil demons take over a children's show and Angel is turned into a puppet--awesome).

The final 6 start airing every week beginning April 14th.


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