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Author's Chapter Notes:
Episodes 7-11: [BtVS] Fool For Love, Shadow, Listening to Fear, Into the Woods, and Triangle.
[AtS] Darla, The Shroud of Rahmon, The Trial, Reunion, and Redefinition.
BtVS 7: Fool For Love
[When Buffy forces Spike to recount how he was able to kill two Slayers, his flashbacks reveal his first meeting with Drusilla.]

I'd heard so many good things about this episode, so I was really excited to see it! I suppose the most interesting thing about this one was all of the Spike backstory we got to see. So, what follows is me rambling about Spike, mostly. ;-)

Somehow, I had always imagined that he wouldn't have been so different as a human than he was as a vampire, and interestingly enough, I don't think I was wrong about that. I just didn't know that much about him before. The things that have always stood out to me about Spike are his sensitivity to what the people around him seem to be feeling and that very defensive sort of bravado, the kind that is there to keep people out and cover the fact that you're insecure about where you stand, to strike out at them before they can hurt you. A lot of his actions in the series can be traced to those two things and now that I think about it, it seems that he was not so different as a human. He was just young and naive enough to let people walk all over him. And so, so desperate for affection, my god.

I have to say that JM played the backstory parts very well, to the extent that he was nearly unrecognizable as William. (Very Wesley or early Giles, actually.) I loved the implication that William had faked a posh accent to get in with the upper class crowd, but once he became a vampire he spoke just as commonly as he'd been raised, because it didn't matter any more. That says a lot about the character and possibly about the amount of desperation he was feeling just before he was made a vampire. The visual of that was interesting too, as if that experience actually freed him from the bounds of his place in society in a way that nothing else could have. Yet, he wasn't really freed from that need to be approved of and loved, for whatever reason.

I really liked seeing the dynamic between Spike and Angelus. In addition to be extraordinarily slashy, it seemed very clear that Angelus was constantly about an inch away from killing him -- and that Spike liked pushing his buttons and challenging him, like the son who is determined to best his hardass father and then revel in the victory. Angelus's possessiveness of Darla and Dru was a nice touch (calling them "my women"), as was the way he ruled the group with an iron fist. I hope we will get to see more flashbacks with the four of them, because that was twelve kinds of awesome.

The eroticism of this episode was amazing as well, from the way they lit Spike in the Chinese scenes (OMG the demonic sunken eyes!), to the hair and make-up and rock star imagery of the slow-mo scene before the burning city, to the only-just-cut fuck with Dru in the middle of a battle with a dead slayer on the floor feet away. I think I like him with that unruly mop of brown hair, actually. And I can't remember exactly when Angelus was cursed, but I thought it was before 1900 somehow. I guess I was wrong.

Seeing Spike at different points in time was fun, I have to say. The whole punk rock thing with the slayer out of a Blaxploitation flick was fantastic! The within-series flashback with Drusilla (and OMG the chaos demon!) was also interesting, because it implies that Dru broke up with him for a more complicated reason than what we were led to believe. Spike just has a thing for slayers, and something about Buffy has him obsessed to the point of being unable to get on with his (un)life. Very cool, that.

It was also interesting to see Buffy struggling in this episode, and in a way we haven't seen her do before. She was quietly rational about her weaknesses, and wanted to learn how Spike had killed those slayers with a sort of detached fierceness that made me stop and stare at her a few times. His point that all slayers have a death wish really struck me, because yeah -- that's the only way you stop being a slayer, isn't it? You're almost doomed to die in battle, and it could happen at any time. Yikes.

The sexual tension between the two of them was amazing, as was the way the second slayer battle flashback on the subway was intercut with the present, making it clear that Spike had really drawn Buffy in and gotten into her head in a way that few are able to do. Her response to his almost kissing her was more about her, it seemed, than it was about him. Her rejection of him at that point was out of fear, I thought -- not because she wasn't interested. She was quite interested.

And ooh, using the same line as the woman who'd rejected him way back when -- ouch. It was a strange choice to have him cry there, and I think it might have been better if they'd pulled it back a little. That's a moment where welled tears would have been more powerful than a little sob. Of course, maybe the point was that he really hasn't changed at all from the man he was, and that everything he's done for the last century has just been posturing because he's never really gotten over that one woman rejecting him. He just really seems to be needed, and he doesn't have that with Dru gone. Harmony doesn't really need him, and he doesn't respect her enough anyway. He also has a history of fixating on women who are a bit out of his league, I suppose. I think what really broke my heart was that he thought Buffy needed him for a little while there, that he had something she could only get from him. It was clear that he was stalling for time, trying to stretch out the experience as much as possible, relish every moment of feeling important -- and in the end she pushed him to the ground and shattered that fantasy in the cruelest possible way. (Not that I blame her -- she has no reason to think he has anything other than malice in his heart.)

The ending was what really made this episode, I have to say. He really did seem like this was it, that he was going to kill her for making him feel the way she'd done, and the moment he saw her crying, he totally melted. Him sitting next to her on the stairs and sort of awkwardly patting her on the back said so, so much.

Oh, Spike. What are you in for?


A:tS 7: Darla
[Angel is desperate to rescue Darla from the clutches of Wolfram & Hart. Flashbacks reveal what a dangerous and powerful relationship they shared as history weirdly seems to be repeating itself.]

Eee, crossover goodness! It was so, so cool to see the same flashback scenes again, but this time from Angel's perspective instead of Spike's. It was also fantastic to see Darla get made into a vampire, and OMG the Master was her sire? Dude. (Did we know that already?) And wow, she was a prostitute as a human and apparently was dying from something nasty. The theme of her preferring her existence as a vampire to that of her existence as a human was really interesting. It must have been a pretty awful life as a human.

The scene where Angelus was snarky to the Master was gorgeous, and made me think back on The Wish when Angel was the Master's prisoner. You could probably read in a bit of retribution there for what Angel had taken away from him. I loved Angelus taking Darla away by being a general bad-ass, showing no fear or even respect for the Master, and then asking her which face she'd rather spend eternity looking at. The bad boy thing gets us every time, doesn't it? The bit where she said, "the blood is still hot in his veins" and he pressed against her from behind and said, "you noticed" made me squee loud enough to scare my cat. I remember Faith saying that slaying made her horny, and apparently for a lot of vampires, the kill is quite an aphrodisiac. With the exception of that one 12-hours-of-sex-with-Riley episode, it doesn't seem to be that way for Buffy, in general. Spike seemed surprised by that, didn't he? Maybe that's part of what makes her so powerful.

Anyway, I'm getting the sense that part of what made Angelus legendary was that he was such a maverick as a vampire, and insisted on living as a human, walking among humans, and living with the comforts humans enjoy. Oh, and the "bump" scene on the street where William ran right into him was great! I saw that in the Buffy episode and so it was fun to get to look at it from the other perspective. I love that Dru made Spike a vampire because she was basically dared to. "You could just take the first drooling idiot that comes along!" Darla didn't seem to like Dru very much, which was funny. Dru calling her "Grandmother" was even better. Watching those scenes with the four of them again was really, really fun.

It also explained a lot about the fight between Angelus and Spike in one of the flashbacks in Fool For Love, where Angelus was furious that Spike had attracted so much attention to them and driven them underground, the very place Angelus had defied the Master to leave. I'd thought his utter disdain for Spike there was just him being angry that his leadership was being threatened, but now it seems more like Angelus never really liked Spike in the first place. He seemed to see Spike as just an annoying twit, something to keep Dru occupied while he was fucking Darla. (And Darla seemed to agree, from what I can tell.)

And wow, Angel went back to Darla after he'd been cursed and tried to fit in with the gang again, hoping to make it like it was before. His reaction to Spike killing the slayer was so interesting and different to watch with that new bit of knowledge. (And I'm glad to know my timing of the curse wasn't that far off.) Poor Angel. He had nowhere to go and nothing else to exist for, but he couldn't do it. And again, the scene with the four of them walking through the burning city, but this time knowing what Angel was thinking -- OMG. That was a fucking amazing moment right there.

I thought it was interesting that he was surviving by feeding on thieves and murderers and such, people he could feel less guilty about killing. That reminded me of Louis from Interview With the Vampire, who said that he hated taking innocent life, but that innocent blood tasted so much sweeter than the blood of criminals.

So, back to the present. The W&H folks are really slick, so slick that they even fooled Lindsay. I guess they saw that he was too close to Darla and decided to use that against him. Poor Lindsay, so easy to manipulate, and then never quite knowing which side he should be on. Oh, and there was more squeeing from me when Darla told him, "It's not me you want to screw -- it's him." Oh, yes. Yes, he does indeed want to fuck Angel. Heh. And ooh, we got a little bit of Angel/Lindsay interaction too!

And in the end, Angel was stunned that even though Darla had been given the one thing he wants more than anything -- the thing he had for a single blissful day and gave up, the thing that will hopefully be his destiny -- and she doesn't want it. She would give it up in an instant to be a vampire again, and it was like her spitting in his face to say it. That was such an amazing moment, because it really defined who he was and who she was, and just how different they were as people. Even though they'd spent 150 years together, they didn't know each other that well.

Mmmm... angst. How I love it so!

What a pair of amazing episodes. Wow.


BtVS 8: Shadow
[In order to protect her sister, Buffy must face a horrible beast that has been conjured by the powerful demon Glory to help seek out "The Key."]

Riley seems to be on his way out. I really, really feel for him, because I really like him as a character and all of this is probably going to go so badly. He thinks he's being shut out of her life, and while I don't think it's intentional, he's not imagining it all either. Buffy has relegated him to her errand boy pretty much, and doesn't need him at a time when someone normally would be leaning heavily on a partner for support. She's so used to standing on her own that she doesn't seem to realize she doesn't have to be the strong one in a situation like this. And he's just standing there helplessly, wanting so badly to be a pillar of strength for her, but she doesn't seem to want or need that from him.

Even Xander and Spike contributed to his sense of distance from her, though Spike did it completely intentionally. And as an aside, Spike in Buffy's room and sniffing her clothes just killed me. And OMG, he pocketed a pair of lacy panties on his way out? Naughty boy! But still, he knew exactly how to twist the knife in Riley, and he did it with pleasure. I don't blame Spike, though -- that's just him. Spike's bragging about never having been uninvited to the house was interesting. Is that really true? I'm guessing he might find himself uninvited pretty soon if he keeps coming in at odd hours and messing with Buffy's stuff.

The moment it cut to the shot of Riley sitting at the bar at Willy's, I wrote in my notes, "OMG he wants to be a vampire", because that was the only thing that made sense at that point. And how interesting that he was that desperate to be what he thinks Buffy wants, that he would go to that length. Those two need to communicate with each other, but so many things are getting in the way. It didn't help that Dawn told him, "she doesn't get all worked up like that over you," referring to Angel. Ouch. It's interesting to me that being bitten is almost always depicted as fairly erotic, something the victims almost enjoy. The only exception to that rule on the show that I can recall was one Mr. William the Bloody, who was all, "ow... ow... OW... OW!"

And yikes, what's going to happen to Joyce? It doesn't look good, and I can't imagine that Buffy will be able to find some way to save her. People just die sometimes, and not even Buffy can stop it. I can't help but wonder if the brain tumor is connected to Dawn's appearance.

And then there was a bunch of stuff with Glory and the scabby monk and a big Godzilla lizard, which wasn't all that well-animated compared to other things they've done on the show. It was sort of a cheesy model much of the time. But that wasn't really the part I was paying attention to anyway.


A:tS 8: The Shroud of Rahmon
[Angel poses as a flashy vampire hoodlum, and with the help of Gunn prevents a mind-altering shroud from falling into the wrong hands.]

The structure of this one was really odd for this show; episodes usually proceed in a much more linear fashion. So the fact that they started with the ending made me wonder what it was they were trying to accomplish. I suppose it set us up to maybe think Angel was going to turn and that he would kill someone, and that maybe Wesley was going to take the fall for it.

I imagine episodes like this were probably fun for DB in that he got to play someone other than Angel. It seemed that the Las Vegas vampire got disposed of a little too easily, and it was weird that the bad guys accepted Angel as him without any suspicion. Not to mention that they accepted Gunn as the driver with no questions, and then didn't really look too closely at Angel and Gunn whispering to the side about what was really going on. I guess we're meant to think they weren't such good bad guys. You'd think they would've done a little research into how dangerous this thing they were stealing was.

Anyway, the big issue here is that Angel seems to be sliding downhill fast. All the stuff with Darla has left him unbalanced, and now he's bitten Kate -- who bless her heart, always manages to be at the wrong place at the wrong time and is lucky to still be alive anyway. It was interesting that he regained enough presence of mind to stop himself from killing her and to dispose of the shroud. It seems that something has shifted between Kate and Angel, though. I'm curious as to how that bite is going to affect both of them.

And how did Cordelia get out? Wesley was worried about her in the "beginning", but they didn't resolve that part.


BtVS 9: Listening to Fear
[As Buffy and Dawn help their mother prepare for brain surgery, an extra-terrestrial demon fixates on a disoriented Joyce and infiltrates the Summers’ home.]

There were a lot of things going on in this episode, so many that I can't imagine watching this one out of sequence. I don't think it would make much sense. You have Riley apparently going out and looking for vampires to bite him, just for the sheer pleasure of it (and how interesting that they filmed that like it was a blow job), a little advancement of the Glory plot, and a lot of Joyce disintegrating.

As a little personal aside, I've seen that kind of mental disintegration in a loved one, and it was really hard to watch Buffy have to deal with it. One moment, they're there with you and you're having a normal conversation, and the next, they're counting their peas into a carefully folded napkin and asking you to sneak it upstairs to Ginny, who was sent to bed without supper. It's incredibly distressing to see someone who was an important adult in your life be reduced to that, so when Buffy broke down at the sink, I was right there with her.

So Riley called in the feds to help with the alien, and they ultimately were not much help at all, as usual. Oh sure, they'll take the body off and dissect it, but really? They wouldn't even know what it was except that the gang figured it out first. I guess Riley wanted to help in some way. I'm wondering if he'll go back to the military. He seems to be flailing at the moment, not really fitting into Buffy's world, but not really belonging anywhere else either. If he doesn't get turned into a vampire first, that is.

It was interesting that it turns out Ben is a demon of some sort too, at least in the sense that his job seems to be to clean up after Glory. I should have suspected him before, dang it! He was just too perfect and nice and present to be just a doctor at the hospital.

Spike rummaging through Buffy's basement looking for pictures of her was interesting. What, is he building a little shrine to her somewhere? That would be both sweet and creepy, in that obsessive serial killer sort of way. But he was there in time to help her stab the alien, which was good. It was also interesting that there was a closeup shot of him holding out a hand to her, and her taking it. It seemed like such an interesting little detail to get a shot of its very own, and it made me stop and think. I'm guessing it was intended to be significant, like it's showing that something has shifted between them. It also looked like they stayed like that, hand-in-hand for a moment, though it was hard to tell. And of course, Riley bursts in and there's Spike again, everpresent in Buffy's life, which is only going to make him more crazy.

The ending was hard to watch. The fact that Joyce knows Dawn isn't real and made Buffy promise to take care of her really killed me. That's probably a sign that things aren't going to go so well. Or maybe they will, and Joss is just tormenting the viewers?


A:tS 9: The Trial
[Angel is still haunted by flashbacks of his 150-year love affair with Darla and has Gunn help track her down, but he soon discovers that he is faced with an impossible choice: watch her die from a terminal illness or use his dark powers to turn her back into a vampire and give her eternal life.]

It was nice to see something shift in this Darla storyline. I love angst and all, but it needed to move somewhere new. So poor Darla is dying of syphilis all over again, and the only way to stop it is for her to become a vampire. I loved the mulleted dweeb of a vampire she picked up in the bar, who didn't have a clue how to make another vampire. Actually, I've been wondering for a while now where all those new vampires come from. I mean, when we saw Angel, Darla, Drusilla, and Spike made, it was to be brought into a group. They had a place. All those vampires that Buffy stakes every night don't have anyone waiting for them when they crawl out of the grave. They have no mentors, no one to guide them. So are there vampires who just go around making other vampires willy nilly, without it meaning anything to them? I can see how that sort of thing would piss Darla off.

It was nice to see some Lindsay/Angel interaction, even though Lindsay was a prick again by the end. Ah, but he's invited Angel in now, hasn't he? I love it when those two slam each other onto tables by the throat...

The concept of the trial was very interesting. And my, my -- he had to do the whole thing shirtless. What are the odds of that? ;-) But seriously, how amazing that Angel had to choose between his own life and Darla's at the end, and like the romantic he is, he chose to die. And he did save her, really, because she understood what being human meant and saw what he was willing to sacrifice for her to have it. And wow, his rage when the man couldn't cure her was pretty intense.

And ooh, they brought Drusilla in to turn her again! Dru had a line back in Darla about how she could be Darla's mommy, and that really stuck with me even though it didn't make much sense at the time. The imagery of her pulling Darla to her breast was interesting. And poor, poor Angel, losing her just after he'd managed to save her. Of course, I can't help but wonder if she'll be the same Darla he knew. I guess we'll find out.

Cordelia: "You were just soul-less bloodsucking demons. They're lawyers."
Angel: "Yeah. We're amateurs."

Gotta love a good lawyer joke!


BtVS 10: Into the Woods
[Buffy is thunderstruck when Spike informs her of Riley's furtive nights spent in the dark embrace of a vampire.]

Oh, man. My inner angst whore is still quivering from that one. I was wondering when things were going to go bad for Buffy and Riley at long last, and I should have seen it coming the moment she said their night together was perfect. That's a sure sign of impending doom.

I'm glad Joyce is better, though I'm sort of surprised it all worked out. Well, I guess she isn't exactly home from the hospital yet. I'm not going to count those chickens.

Spike standing outside the window and listening to Buffy and Riley having sex was funny, in a twisted sort of way But when Riley got out of bed and headed to the vampire brothel with Spike on his tail, ooh -- that wasn't going to end well. It was interesting that Spike woke Buffy up in the middle of the night to take her there, that he knew she would need to see it with her own eyes to believe it. (And the little moan he made when he turned around, knowing she was naked right behind him, was fantastic. I think I like him smitten.)

So here's the whole biting-as-sex metaphor again. There was no question in Buffy's mind that this was infidelity, and that thing they say about hell hathing no fury? Holy shit, was she ever mad. Not that I blame her, but wow. And of course, she was missing the big picture, as I feel like I've been saying for a while now. That fight they had near the end was so symptomatic of what's wrong with their relationship that I was shocked at its honesty. She shuts him out, he acts out in an attempt to get her attention, she gets angry at the accusation that she's shutting him out and then shuts him out more, he acts out more... It was going to implode at some point. And she wouldn't even hit him. It was as if she thought he wasn't worth the effort of getting worked up, and that stung him more than anything, cause she'll kick Spike's ass for less than that.

There were bright spots, of course. Riley and Spike commiserating over who had it worse was funny, especially when Spike started to really think about having sex with Buffy, and decided maybe Riley was the lucky one after all. And Xander -- OMG, Xander! He can be such an amazing guy, and he's the only man in Buffy's life who can really stand up to her and not be afraid of losing her love. What he told her was absolutely right, and I was amazed that she listened. And of course, she was too late to stop Riley from leaving. There were tears, oh yes. And then Xander went back and told Anya how much he loved her, and I was a real mess.

But it hurts so good, you know?


A:tS 10: Reunion
[Angel goes on a frantic search after Drusilla turns Darla back into a vampire, and he must catch them before she rises again and the two go back to their old ways and paint the town red. Meanwhile, as Angel goes off the deep end, his staff worries they are the only ones standing between Angel and real darkness.]


Okay, let's back up for a moment. Angel's been going slowly downhill for a while now, and I've been waiting for him to hit bottom. He's been more an more of a twat lately, and it looks like he's still sliding. I knew he couldn't stake Darla. She'd only have to look all tortured and he'd melt and think he could save her all over again. And in fact, that's just what happened when he had the chance.

There were some fun lines in this one:
Gunn: "You had me at 'Everyone gear up'." (Nice play on "You had me at hello.")

Holland: "You don't kill humans."
Angel: "You don't qualify."

Darla, looking around the wine cellar: "When we get a place of our own, we have to put in a people cellar."

I was surprised at how strong Darla was, far stronger than it seemed she was before. I wonder if there will be an explanation for that at some point. Drusilla was just as batshitloco as ever, which I love. The street scene with Darla and Dru was fun, especially when Darla killed the asshole in the truck. I don't know why I'm rooting for them, but I am.

So when they crashed Holland's party and it was clear they were on the hunt, I was quite excited. I was almost disappointed when Angel showed up, because I thought that would mean no carnage. Holland and his cronies really deserved to get a taste of what they've unleashed into the world.

The scene where Angel was standing in the doorway and staring at the two of them made me think of the flashbacks to the past when it was just the three of them. I had a moment of "wow, they really are immortal". They were "his women", as he called them, vampires he used to consider his responsibility, and now here they are again. But this time, he's not responsible for them, is he?

So when Holland pleaded with him to help, saying all of those people were going to die, and Angel said, "And somehow, I just don't seem to care," I was all 0_0!!! Because that is so not him. And my god, he barred the door and basically damned all of those people. And he didn't regret it a bit.

So I'm thinking one of two things is going to happen here. One option is that Darla and Dru will make vampires out of all those people and will cause Angel more trouble than he bargained for. Though I think it's more likely that they just killed all those people. So the other possibility I'm thinking about is that Darla wants to hurt the people that hurt her and who have it in for Angel, because she feels some sort of connection to him still. I'm imagining that Angel will eventually regret his actions, no matter how it all turns out.

I'm betting that Lindsay survived the massacre somehow, though, I'm pretty sure he's on the show in future seasons. But as a human or as a vampire, I don't know. He seems like a good candidate for Darla to turn, since she doesn't have Angel anymore. He would be a good replacement for Angel, even though he'd despise being in Angel's shadow.

And then, the kicker: this time when the gang stood up to him, Angel fired them all. Dude. Just... dude.


BtVS 11: Triangle
[Emotions are charged between Willow and Anya when they are left in charge of the magic shop and Willow accidentally conjures an enormous troll.]

This had the filling of a filler episode, but it was still fun. I don't mind those so much, I guess because I don't have to wait a week to see the plot move forward. Actually, the rest of the gang had been absent so much from the last few episodes that it was good to see a story focused on them. And no Riley in the credits. *sigh*

Though I have to say that there was a lot of weird OOCness here. Buffy was weirdly cheery and then weepy (which isn't like her at all); Willow and Tara nicking supplies from Giles while he's gone; Giles turning to the Watchers' Council for help; and since when have Willow and Anya bickered like that? It just all seemed a little off somehow, and I kept waiting for the catch.

Still, the troll was fun. He had the best dialogue, OMG. I wish I had written more of it down, because it was hilarious. And he was an ex of Anya's? Ha!

Ah, poor Spike, still clueless about how to win Buffy's affection. Well, I suppose at this point there's no way he could win Buffy's affection, but the fact that he's trying so hard is endearing. Him practicing on his Buffy doll and getting all violent on it, and then turning into a kitten when faced with her for real was kind of sweet. I loved how he kept his arms around her for just a little longer than was strictly necessary when she fell on him during the fight. And aw, he was trying to be good, wasn't he?

Buffy: "You want credit for not feeding off of bleeding disaster victims?"
Spike: "Well... yeah."
Buffy: "You're disgusting!"
Spike (baffled): "What does it take?"

And ooh, Dawn overheard them talking about her in the end. That can't be good.


A:tS 11: Redefinition
[After firing his staff and cutting himself off from all help, Angel begins intense physical and mental training to become strong enough to stop Darla and Drusilla before they destroy the City of Angels. Meanwhile, Cordelia, Wesley and Gunn try to continue the fight for the innocent on their own now that Angel's gone commando.]

I wondered how much of this episode would be centered around the fallout from Angel firing Wesley, Cordelia, and Gunn. I'm not exactly sure where all of this is going. Angel is either about to go off the deep end, or he knows what he's doing and is trying to protect them. I'm inclined toward the latter just because I can't see him turning his back on these people he cares so much about for no good reason. And being Angel, he wouldn't just come out and say what he's up to. Maybe I'm wrong, but that's certainly the direction I'm leaning in.

It was interesting that the three of them all found each other again, and in the karaoke bar, of all places. Followed by bickering, drinking, blaming each other for all of it, getting wasted, and then topping it all off by "singing" We are the Champions with their arms around each other in that way you can only love your friends when you're shitfaced. I was glad they all ended up saving that girl together, because it showed how committed they are to what they're doing. It wasn't about supporting Angel; it was about doing something they all believed in.

Darla and Drusilla trying to round up their army was fun, especially since Angel foiled their plan by slaughtering all the potential baddies before they even got there. That was pretty crazy, but even crazier was his sitting there and waiting for them, smoking what really looked like a joint. It was interesting that Dru was going on and on about flames and pain, without knowing she was talking about what she was going to experience when Angel set them on fire. But Darla's bafflement at it all was especially chilling, especially when she said that it was neither Angel nor Angelus who did that. So... what does that mean? If you interpret the title literally, it might mean that he's changed somehow, in a way no one expected. I'm not sure if that's good or bad. I kind of liked the old Angel.

And Lindsay and Lilah are now competing with each other for their lives. That should be interesting. I wonder if Lindsay will be a good toy for Darla?

Oh, and loved this bit, right before they went in to see the head honcho W&H guy:
Lilah: "If anyone's going to go down in here, it's gonna be you."
Lindsay: "If that's what it takes."

Angel's last line was ominous: "Let them fight the good fight. Someone has to fight the war." Oooh.


Themes in both shows:

Episode 7: The connection here was clearly on fleshing out the backstory on Spike, Angel, Darla, and Drusilla, and showing it from both Spike's and Angel's perspectives. There was also the theme of powerful women being the downfall of both of them. And in both cases, Spike and Angel ended up killing those women. Ooh, what does that say about what's in Buffy's future if Spike ever does get his chip out?

Episode 8: The only common theme I can see here is that both Riley and Angel are watching their lives spin out of control because of a woman they care about. And there was biting without killing.

Episode 9: I'm not sure if there's a common theme between these two. Imminent death? But that's always a theme on both of these shows.

Episode 10: Buffy and Angel both drove away people they cared about in these episodes, people who ground them in ways they don't seem to realize. And in both cases, their friends were brutally honest about what they were doing wrong -- and while Buffy listened and tried to fix the situation with Riley, Angel pushed Cordy, Wes, and Gunn out of his life. Somehow I think Buffy is going to come out better in the end.

Episode 11: Other than lots of OOCness from the characters on both shows, I'm not really sure if these episodes had anything in common.


OMG, I'm halfway through season 5! But... it's going by too quickly. What will I do when it's all done and there aren't any more episodes to watch? *wibbles*

Oh, who am I kidding? I'll start writing fic, like I always do... ;-)