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2004-03-15 18:18:01+00:00 - THE END OF ANGEL - (mararch@pacbell.net)

I am a rather recent fan of the show. For years I had heard about Buffy... Buffy this, Buffy that. Then Angel. But my only experience with the whole Joss-verse was the feature film of Buffy. (wince) So I wasn't particularly interested in seeing what it was all about. Then, last year, I heard that Buffy was going to end its run. Ok, I figured, I'll watch the last episode, since they usually pull all the stops out for them. So I did. And I was stunned. That prompted a quick trip to the video store where I started slogging through the seasons of Buffy that were out on DVD. I watched season 1 and I was hooked. Then season 2. Then seasons 3 and 4. But it would be another year before they released season 5, so I thought I'd give Angel a try, since season 1 was out on DVD by then. Frankly, Buffy was just an appetizer for Angel. It's almost as if Joss was tinkering with the formula for the first few Buffy seasons and finally, after he started having a season-long through-line where all episodes focused to the single story-line that he jumped up in his hot tub and shouted Eureka! He carried that over to Angel and, of the two, I think Angel is the more mature, more thoughtful and more entertaining. The wonderful thing about the whole "Buffy-verse" is the growth and development of certain characters, something that simply doesn't occur on most other episodic tv. One just has to look at the growth and development of Wesley to get it. When we first met Wes, on Buffy, he was this priggish, nerdy Brit who seemed to be trying to live up to some James Bond image of himself as a Watcher. That made him a rather pethetic object of a great deal of fun. Even when he first arrived on Angel as a "rogue demon hunter" he was still rather embarrassing but still a generally nice guy. Then slowly, over the next couple of seasons he started to settle down and actually assume some responsibility other than being the brains of the operation. By the time of Angel season 3 (the Darla/Conner season) he had evolved into a rather grim, brooding figure. Although I am having to pick up random rebroadcasts of Season 4 (since the DVD's won't be released until late this year), I have noticed in the current season he has become this semi-psychotic cold-blooded guy. (That scene where he kneecaps the young lawyer for not working on Fred's case pretty much says it all.) Now, if someone were to tune in to the current Angel they'd think Wesley was some kind of crazed wacho. But if you've "lived" with him throughout his development you know the pain, loss and determination that took him from this nerdy geek to what he now is. That alone is the power of the Buffy-verse and something I doubt any other series would have the nerve or brains to try and capture. So, now we hear that Angel too will be cancelled at the end of the season. In a way I find that terribly unfair, not only to Joss but to us as fans. I'm sure Joss and the creative people are having to scramble like mad to rewrite, reshoot and generally try to force a "through-line" into the few remaining episodes in order to bring the entire run to a satisfying conclusion. I hope they are able to succeed. My own personal thoughts (my "dream" ending for the series) would be as follows: Fred comes close to causing the Apocolpyse (yeah, I know... typical). Conner comes back to help thwart that, fighting by Angel's side. They barely manage to stop the total destruction of the world, but with some equally universal change to match the "awakening of all Slayer's everywhere" ending of Buffy. What might be nice is the complete, spontanious destruction of all vampires and demons everywhere in the world (sucked into an alternate dimension perhaps). In the process of destroying Illyria/Fred, Angel is wounded. Surprisingly, he finds himself really badly hurt and suddenly realizes he can feel his heart beating... he's finally human again. Except he's mortally wounded. As he lies, dying, with Wesley, Spike and Conner looking on, he has a "vision" of Cordy who comes to usher him to the "next plain". He dies. The finish is Conner heading back to his new life, Spike determining to carry on the Champion work and Wesley, mounting his long discarded motorcycle to return to his life as a "rogue demon hunter", and clean out the few remaining demons who didn't get zapped in the big "clean up". This would leave Spike or Wesley for their own series, and since we know there really is no such thing as "permanently dead" in the Buffy-verse, who knows what guest shots might occur.

2004-03-19 10:58:21-06:00 - Re: THE END OF ANGEL - (Thirsty Viking <john_doerter@hotmail.com>)

> This would leave Spike or Wesley for their own series, and since we > know there really is no such thing as "permanently dead" in the > Buffy-verse, who knows what guest shots might occur. Thats Great, but we could have both Spike and Wes riding off into the night on motorcycles. No reason they have to stay together, but no reason for them to seperate either. Of course Spike might prefer one of the necro tempered cars from Angels fleet instead... makes driving east at dawn a little safer.