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2004-02-05 01:28:34-06:00 - Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com>)


As a series, ANGEL has always had a bit of difficulty deciding what kind of show it wants to be. Is it gothic horror or dorky sci-fi? Is it raw and realistic or romantic and fanciful? Is it a thoughtful drama or a rip-roaring action hour? The show never can seem to settle on one option for very long. Sometimes it seems to switch from genre to genre with every episode, or to transform at the drop of a hat from one of the most rich and intriguing shows on television into one of TV's most absurd and simplistic hours. So perhaps it's fitting that, when ANGEL's hundredth episode steps back to examine the series's past and present, it displays the same scizophrenia. "You're Welcome" was a frustrating mix of everything that makes the show sing when it's at its best -- and everything that makes the show suck when it's not. Unfortunately, it's also an uncomfortable reminder that a big part of what makes the show sing has apparently disappeared into the past. SPOILERS for this week's episode are below... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Goddamn you, Cordy. You've ruined me for everyone else. Ladies and gentlemen, *that* was a leading lady. And, no, I'm not just talking about the fact that Charisma Carpenter was in fine form tonight, investing every line with warmth and passion and conviction. Nor the fact that she managed to display an eye-popping amount of cleavage without looking even a little bit sleazy. I'm also talking about the way Cordelia was written tonight. I've gotten so used to ANGEL's *girl* characters -- ditzy Harmony; "playing dres-up in big-girl clothes" Eve; cutesy, neurotic Fred -- that it was such a thrill to once again meet a real *woman*. Writer Fury apparently learned from the mistakes of Cordies past (e.g., the too-perfect Saint Cordelia, or the weak and befuddled Amnesia Action Figure Cordy) and presented her at her strong and confident, yet altogether human, best. She was a confidante, a fellow warrior -- and an equal to Angel -- and it took this episode to remind me how important a role that is, and how much the show has suffered from its exclusion. God, but the scenes between Angel and Cordy were a breath of fresh air. These are the kind of characterizations that have marked this show at its best: 1. Characters who are smart, who know their own failings and weaknesses and can help articulate the failings and weaknesses of their friends. 2. Characters who are communicative, who actually *talk* to each other about serious issues, instead of dully suffering alone or refusing to ask the obvious questions. 3. Characters with histories, who remember and continue to be shaped by the experiences we saw them go through in the past. 4. Characters who are active, who instead of sulking actually *do things* to turn their lives around (even if they're sometimes the wrong things). 5. Characters who are strong, who continue to soldier on and do what's right, without whining about the cost. There was so much that was right about the Angel/Cordy scenes; unfortunately, there was so much that was wrong about the rest of the episode. The execution of Lindsey's Plan B wasn't exactly awful -- there were some snappy lines of dialogue, some stylish setpieces, and some action that at least had the benefit of being well-lit enough to *see* for once -- but all in all it amounted to a lot of sound and fury signifying not nearly as much as the writers seemed to think. I'm sure I'm not the only one who was disappointed with the simplistic explanation for Lindsey's big plan. He got himself all magicked up in foreign lands, seduced W&H's liaison to the Senior Partners, located and dug Spike's amulet out of a zillion tons of rubble, and somehow gained access to a recorporealization spell so powerful that it was beyond the capabilities of Wolfram & Hart -- all as part of an elaborate plan to... wait for it... steal Angel's job because he was envious of his power? Come *on*! If that's all there is, if there's no greater plan -- if all the stuff about challenging destiny and questioning our place in the world is just a meaningless *trick* Lindsey played on Angel and Spike -- it cheapens the entire arc of the season to this point. Angel triumphs over his deep-seated uncertainty not because he's answered the nagging questions about his place in the universe, but because he's realized that the *questions themselves* are a trick. Well, the questions themselves shouldn't be a dismissed as a trick, because they're legitimate questions, no matter what crazed Angel- infatuated lawyer posed them. Considering his new position, considering everything he did last season to Jasmine and Connor, Angel *should* be asking himself, "Am I still a hero? Is a hero even what the world needs me to be?" To handwave away these serious questions by discrediting the questioner is the worst kind of rhetorical bait-and-switch. And while we're on the subject of Angel's triumph over his existential uncertainty -- what the hell was up with his big revelation at the end of the fight with Lindsey? To wit: "I'm Angel. I beat the bad guys." Ugh! Can you get more rock-headed and banal than that? I'm not exactly sure how beating up one relatively low-power bad guy proves to Angel that he can take on the combined corporate might of Wolfram & Hart, and the demonic power of its Senior Partners, and emerge with his fingers and soul still attached. And yet, that's exactly what we're supposed to believe happened; Cordy's faith inspired him to defeat Lindsey, and defeating Lindsey convinced him to continue the fight with W&H. Huh? There's a problem with that scenario, and it's not in the superb Angel/Cordy side of things. But there is a problem with that side of things, as well. Because, while I truly loved the character work in that half of the show, I have to wonder, is there a way to retain these kind of characterizations, now that Cordy is dead and gone? After all, the Angel/Cordy interactions are grounded in their mutual trust, respect, and openness, and there doesn't seem to be another character on the show with whom Angel can share himself so completely. Not Spike, whom he hates; not the former AI gang, from whom he's hiding so much. Yes, Angel manages to confide in others on a limited basis, every once in a while. And, sure enough, the times when he does have made for some of the best scenes of the season: when he talks about the nature of heroism with Numero Cinqo in "The Cautionary Tale..."; when he tells Wes that he finally understands his moral nature at the end of "Lineage"; when he and Spike discuss their differing views of evil in "Damage." But with Cordy gone, and Our Heroes unable to trust even one another, these moment seem few and far between. And, yes, the distance and isolation makes sense in the new corporate setting. This is certainly the kind of thing that can happen when you become a part of the corporate machine. But, after seeing the alternative illustrated so profoundly by Angel and Cordelia, I'm starting to wonder, like Angel at the beginning of the episode, if the new digs are truly worth the cost. -- Lord Usher "I'm here to kill you, not to judge you."

2004-02-05 05:54:18-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (kenm47@ix.netcom.com)


Thanks LU for an insightful post. I think you're thoughts are dead on. But not to worry, next week we really travel to comic book world and time travel to WW2 and Nazis? Does that mean the show is over? They actually got to Nazis? Is there a Godwin's Law for TV shows that are discussed on the internet? For an interesting site discussing Godwin's Law at lemgth, see http://www.faqs.org/faqs/usenet/legends/godwin/ Didn't X-Files also have a time travel with Nazis episode? Wasn't that the big Mulder/Scully fake out kiss that maybe was the (or "a") death knell there too? Ken

2004-02-05 09:42:10-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (reldevik@usa.net)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<Xns9486E482C69Dhouseofusher@216.40.28.71>... > As a series, ANGEL has always had a bit of difficulty deciding what kind > of show it wants to be. Is it gothic horror or dorky sci-fi? Is it raw > and realistic or romantic and fanciful? Is it a thoughtful drama or a > rip-roaring action hour? > > The show never can seem to settle on one option for very long. Sometimes > it seems to switch from genre to genre with every episode, or to > transform at the drop of a hat from one of the most rich and intriguing > shows on television into one of TV's most absurd and simplistic hours. > > So perhaps it's fitting that, when ANGEL's hundredth episode steps back > to examine the series's past and present, it displays the same > scizophrenia. "You're Welcome" was a frustrating mix of everything that > makes the show sing when it's at its best -- and everything that makes > the show suck when it's not. --Not seeing the bad here. I actually don't think this show suffers from schizophrenia. > Unfortunately, it's also an uncomfortable reminder that a big part of > what makes the show sing has apparently disappeared into the past. --If you mean the character of Cordy, well, yes. But the challenges Angel will face trying to wrestle with the dilemma he's currently in with W&H and not having Cordelia to constantly keep his moral compass straight should be interesting in themselves. If Cordy were there every week, it would probably be too simple and easy. (snipping spoiler space because I don't see why it's needed) > Goddamn you, Cordy. You've ruined me for everyone else. > > Ladies and gentlemen, *that* was a leading lady. And, no, I'm not just > talking about the fact that Charisma Carpenter was in fine form tonight, > investing every line with warmth and passion and conviction. Nor the > fact that she managed to display an eye-popping amount of cleavage > without looking even a little bit sleazy. > > I'm also talking about the way Cordelia was written tonight. I've gotten > so used to ANGEL's *girl* characters -- ditzy Harmony; "playing dres-up > in big-girl clothes" Eve; cutesy, neurotic Fred -- that it was such a > thrill to once again meet a real *woman*. --Well, Harmony certainly is girlishness epitomized, and Eve as a villainess is in a whole different category from the heroines, but I think you're being very unfair to Fred here. Have you forgotten Supersymmetry? Have you forgotten The Magic Bullet? Fred has brains, guts, and determination. Too bad about the neurotic mannerisms, but every character has to have something idiosyncratic in order to stand out from the others as an individual. I dispute the contention that Fred isn't a "real woman." > Writer Fury apparently learned from the mistakes of Cordies past (e.g., > the too-perfect Saint Cordelia, or the weak and befuddled Amnesia Action > Figure Cordy) and presented her at her strong and confident, yet > altogether human, best. She was a confidante, a fellow warrior -- and an > equal to Angel --I agree with this. Cordy's characterization was exactly what it should have been. -- and it took this episode to remind me how important a > role that is, and how much the show has suffered from its exclusion. --*Angel* has *personally* suffered from its exclusion, yes; he has been lost and drifting; but as I suggested above, the drama may actually benefit from Angel being now under the necessity of thinking for himself and meeting challenges sans Cordy. (snip) > There was so much that was right about the Angel/Cordy scenes; > unfortunately, there was so much that was wrong about the rest of the > episode. The execution of Lindsey's Plan B wasn't exactly awful -- there > were some snappy lines of dialogue, some stylish setpieces, and some > action that at least had the benefit of being well-lit enough to *see* > for once -- but all in all it amounted to a lot of sound and fury > signifying not nearly as much as the writers seemed to think. --What more did you want, exactly? I thought this aspect of the episode was fine. > I'm sure I'm not the only one who was disappointed with the simplistic > explanation for Lindsey's big plan. He got himself all magicked up in > foreign lands, seduced W&H's liaison to the Senior Partners, located and > dug Spike's amulet out of a zillion tons of rubble, and somehow gained > access to a recorporealization spell so powerful that it was beyond the > capabilities of Wolfram & Hart -- all as part of an elaborate plan to... > wait for it... steal Angel's job because he was envious of his power? --Actually I didn't see how Lindsey's plan would result in him being able to "steal Angel's job." Where are you getting that idea? I thought Lindsey was just out to mess with Angel out of sheer malice. Yes, Lindsey had once been the rising young W&H lawyer. Yes, Lindsey was annoyed to see Angel as CEO of W&H. But was there ever any real suggestion that Lindsey would be stepping into place as the new CEO? Am I missing something? I will say this. I was surprised to find that Lindsey's motivation for messing with Angel was envy and resentment. Somehow I thought there was more to it than that. But then again, envy and resentment were the feelings Lindsey was voicing in Eve's hearing (and later, during the fight, to Angel). Maybe Lindsey just wanted to present his motivations that way to Eve and Angel. Maybe there's actually more going on inside Lindsey than he was willing to reveal to Eve and Angel. > Come *on*! > > If that's all there is, if there's no greater plan -- if all the stuff > about challenging destiny and questioning our place in the world is just > a meaningless *trick* Lindsey played on Angel and Spike -- it cheapens > the entire arc of the season to this point. Angel triumphs over his > deep-seated uncertainty not because he's answered the nagging questions > about his place in the universe, but because he's realized that the > *questions themselves* are a trick. --No, I can't agree with this. As Cordy said at the end of the episode, the points she had made about Angel making a deal with the devil were God's own truth. Cordy didn't budge one whit about Angel's need to extricate himself from what he had gotten entangled with at W&H. She kept insisting on it. She just said she knew he had what it takes to do it: "You're bigger than that." Lindsey's petty malice, if that is indeed all there was to Lindsey's motivation--and certainly it's what Lindsey expressed to Angel, so it's what Angel thinks was motivating Lindsey--illustrates what's wrong with W&H, and what W&H does to people. It should give Angel pause and make him wonder, "Is that the sort of person I'll become if I stay here?" Yes, it was a cheap trick Lindsey played on Angel and Spike, setting up Spike as the supposed New Champion of the PTB and making Angel feel unimportant and left out--but it's in the nature of malicious bad guys to play cheap tricks on the good guys, isn't it? Look at how Iago tricked Othello. Othello fell for it, even to the point of killing Desdemona unrightfully, but it wasn't a total victory of evil. Iago's malice was exposed in the end, and order was restored. Othello was tarnished but never really lost his greatness. Iago's petty malice destroyed several lives, sadly, but in the end it was exposed for what it was, and the forces of goodness re-asserted themselves. The sheer pettiness of Iago's malice was part of the point, and if that is in fact all there is to Lindsey too then I'd say that's part of the point of this year's AtS drama. > Well, the questions themselves shouldn't be a dismissed as a trick, > because they're legitimate questions, no matter what crazed Angel- > infatuated lawyer posed them. Considering his new position, considering > everything he did last season to Jasmine and Connor, Angel *should* be > asking himself, "Am I still a hero? Is a hero even what the world needs > me to be?" To handwave away these serious questions by discrediting the > questioner is the worst kind of rhetorical bait-and-switch. --But I don't think that's what's going on. Just because Lindsey was duplicitous and had his own agenda doesn't mean the questions have been dismissed. Again, see Cordy's last remarks to Angel (the "God's own truth" part). > And while we're on the subject of Angel's triumph over his existential > uncertainty -- what the hell was up with his big revelation at the end > of the fight with Lindsey? To wit: > > "I'm Angel. I beat the bad guys." > > Ugh! Can you get more rock-headed and banal than that? I'm not exactly > sure how beating up one relatively low-power bad guy proves to Angel > that he can take on the combined corporate might of Wolfram & Hart, and > the demonic power of its Senior Partners, and emerge with his fingers > and soul still attached. And yet, that's exactly what we're supposed to > believe happened; Cordy's faith inspired him to defeat Lindsey, and > defeating Lindsey convinced him to continue the fight with W&H. Huh? --Well, it was Angel's equivalent of Buffy's revelation in Anne (BtVS 3.1): "I'm Buffy the Vampire Slayer." This came in response to a relatively low-level threat by a low-level scumbag too (I can't even remember the name of the guy who was running the enslavement scheme). But it was enough to get Buffy fighting again instead of moping, and that's what's important. Likewise, Angel realized in 5.12 that he had to set himself against the forces of malice, be they grand or petty. > There's a problem with that scenario, and it's not in the superb > Angel/Cordy side of things. > > But there is a problem with that side of things, as well. Because, while > I truly loved the character work in that half of the show, I have to > wonder, is there a way to retain these kind of characterizations, now > that Cordy is dead and gone? > > After all, the Angel/Cordy interactions are grounded in their mutual > trust, respect, and openness, and there doesn't seem to be another > character on the show with whom Angel can share himself so completely. > Not Spike, whom he hates; --Here you are disregarding the complexity of Angel's relationship with Spike. Certainly there will always be differences between the Angel-Spike relationship and the Angel-Cordy relationship; Spike and Cordy will never be just interchangeable. But Spike and Angel have shared certain experiences that Cordy has never shared with Angel (the whole evil-vampire-regaining-his-soul thing), and however much bickering and resentment there may be on the surface between Angel and Spike there is also a growing understanding and mutual caring. One could sense that at the end of episode 5.11. Depend upon it, the Angel-Spike relationship will eventually grow into something important and sustaining for both of them, no matter how many setbacks and sidetracks there may be along the way. not the former AI gang, from whom he's hiding > so much. --The fact that Angel is hiding so much from them, and that Cordy has now come right out in so many words and called him on the wrongness of "raping his friends' minds", is something that has a lot of interesting dramatic potential, though. I don't see this as a disadvantage *dramatically.* > Yes, Angel manages to confide in others on a limited basis, every once > in a while. And, sure enough, the times when he does have made for some > of the best scenes of the season: when he talks about the nature of > heroism with Numero Cinqo in "The Cautionary Tale..."; when he tells Wes > that he finally understands his moral nature at the end of "Lineage"; > when he and Spike discuss their differing views of evil in "Damage." But > with Cordy gone, and Our Heroes unable to trust even one another, these > moment seem few and far between. --Once again, that's part and parcel of this season's dramatic situation. It's something that has to be worked through. It keeps things difficult and interesting. > And, yes, the distance and isolation makes sense in the new corporate > setting. This is certainly the kind of thing that can happen when you > become a part of the corporate machine. But, after seeing the > alternative illustrated so profoundly by Angel and Cordelia, I'm > starting to wonder, like Angel at the beginning of the episode, if the > new digs are truly worth the cost. --How Angel resolves that question could well be worth the cost, though. Clairel

2004-02-05 10:30:31-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (igs622001@yahoo.com)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<Xns9486E482C69Dhouseofusher@216.40.28.71>... > And, yes, the distance and isolation makes sense in the new corporate > setting. This is certainly the kind of thing that can happen when you > become a part of the corporate machine. But, after seeing the > alternative illustrated so profoundly by Angel and Cordelia, I'm > starting to wonder, like Angel at the beginning of the episode, if the > new digs are truly worth the cost. Nice summary and all good points. I generally agree with everything you said. I think our only differences in perceiving the episode relate to what we expect from the series. I infer from your review that you still expect a fair bit from the series and, thus, are disappointed when things don't work as well as you'd hoped. Yes, the Lyndsey thing was a disappointment and, yes, it was poorly done. However, having suffered through the last couple of seasons of BtVS, how could you reasonably expect better? Lowered expectations: the secret to enjoying AtS this season. ;) Also, just out of curiousity, did the short exchange involving Harmony as being "technically evil" change your views, as we were discussing a while ago?

2004-02-05 11:39:28-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (himiko@animail.net)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<Xns9486E482C69Dhouseofusher@216.40.28.71>... > As a series, ANGEL has always had a bit of difficulty deciding what kind > of show it wants to be. Is it gothic horror or dorky sci-fi? Is it raw > and realistic or romantic and fanciful? Is it a thoughtful drama or a > rip-roaring action hour? I'm not sure I see this as a difficulty, but it's a good description. > The show never can seem to settle on one option for very long. Sometimes > it seems to switch from genre to genre with every episode, or to > transform at the drop of a hat from one of the most rich and intriguing > shows on television into one of TV's most absurd and simplistic hours. The latter is rare IMO, and really only occurs when they go totally melodramatic. There have been episodes that read like soaps, but surprisingly few, especially given the subject matter of the past two seasons. > So perhaps it's fitting that, when ANGEL's hundredth episode steps back > to examine the series's past and present, it displays the same > scizophrenia. "You're Welcome" was a frustrating mix of everything that > makes the show sing when it's at its best -- and everything that makes > the show suck when it's not. > > Unfortunately, it's also an uncomfortable reminder that a big part of > what makes the show sing has apparently disappeared into the past. > > SPOILERS for this week's episode are below... > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > Goddamn you, Cordy. You've ruined me for everyone else. > > Ladies and gentlemen, *that* was a leading lady. And, no, I'm not just > talking about the fact that Charisma Carpenter was in fine form tonight, > investing every line with warmth and passion and conviction. Nor the > fact that she managed to display an eye-popping amount of cleavage > without looking even a little bit sleazy. Agreed and then some. > I'm also talking about the way Cordelia was written tonight. I've gotten > so used to ANGEL's *girl* characters -- ditzy Harmony; "playing dres-up > in big-girl clothes" Eve; cutesy, neurotic Fred -- that it was such a > thrill to once again meet a real *woman*. And then some more. > Writer Fury apparently learned from the mistakes of Cordies past (e.g., > the too-perfect Saint Cordelia, or the weak and befuddled Amnesia Action > Figure Cordy) and presented her at her strong and confident, yet > altogether human, best. She was a confidante, a fellow warrior -- and an > equal to Angel -- and it took this episode to remind me how important a > role that is, and how much the show has suffered from its exclusion. But I don't agree here. Oh, your description is dead on, but it reminded me why Angel can't have a confidante like this, not this season. That's what happens when you're the big cheese; human, uncursed big cheeses often have a wife or lover who plays this role, but Angel can't even have that. He's got the best confidantes he can have under the circumstances. There's Wes who he feels close to and could once confide in, but Wes is cut off from being a full confidante by the mind-rape (and blessings to Cordy for calling it what it was) which I think is a wonderful metaphor for the institutionalized (apparently it was part of the deal) abuse of power and how it affects a relationship. And then there's Spike who's known him forever and is hard-wired much like him...a close relation who he doesn't much like but understands and sees himself in. I think this is why Cordy kept stressing that Angel's strength must come from within this season. She can't be there giving him great pep talks (maybe her new road is to teach General Buffy how to speak), because then she'd be the traditional wife/lover and Angel can't have that. > > There was so much that was right about the Angel/Cordy scenes; > unfortunately, there was so much that was wrong about the rest of the > episode. The execution of Lindsey's Plan B wasn't exactly awful -- there > were some snappy lines of dialogue, some stylish setpieces, and some > action that at least had the benefit of being well-lit enough to *see* > for once -- but all in all it amounted to a lot of sound and fury > signifying not nearly as much as the writers seemed to think. > > I'm sure I'm not the only one who was disappointed with the simplistic > explanation for Lindsey's big plan. He got himself all magicked up in > foreign lands, seduced W&H's liaison to the Senior Partners, located and > dug Spike's amulet out of a zillion tons of rubble, and somehow gained > access to a recorporealization spell so powerful that it was beyond the > capabilities of Wolfram & Hart -- all as part of an elaborate plan to... > wait for it... steal Angel's job because he was envious of his power? > You're certainly not the only one, although I was highly amused by the nationalistic tinge to Lindsey's "Texan" objections: Eurotrash vampire, indeed! > If that's all there is, if there's no greater plan -- if all the stuff > about challenging destiny and questioning our place in the world is just > a meaningless *trick* Lindsey played on Angel and Spike -- it cheapens > the entire arc of the season to this point. Angel triumphs over his > deep-seated uncertainty not because he's answered the nagging questions > about his place in the universe, but because he's realized that the > *questions themselves* are a trick. > > Well, the questions themselves shouldn't be a dismissed as a trick, > because they're legitimate questions, no matter what crazed Angel- > infatuated lawyer posed them. Considering his new position, considering > everything he did last season to Jasmine and Connor, Angel *should* be > asking himself, "Am I still a hero? Is a hero even what the world needs > me to be?" To handwave away these serious questions by discrediting the > questioner is the worst kind of rhetorical bait-and-switch. Excellent synopsis of where the show and Angel and the whole gang should be going. However, I'm not convinced we've seen the last of Lindsey or that this was the full extent of his scheme. I would not be surprised to discover that being called on the carpet by the SPs was part of his longer range plan. I suspect he wanted it to happen because he'd killed Angel, something that goes against SP policy, but I'm sure he has any number of contingency plans. > And while we're on the subject of Angel's triumph over his existential > uncertainty -- what the hell was up with his big revelation at the end > of the fight with Lindsey? To wit: > > "I'm Angel. I beat the bad guys." > > Ugh! Can you get more rock-headed and banal than that? I'm not exactly > sure how beating up one relatively low-power bad guy proves to Angel > that he can take on the combined corporate might of Wolfram & Hart, and > the demonic power of its Senior Partners, and emerge with his fingers > and soul still attached. And yet, that's exactly what we're supposed to > believe happened; Cordy's faith inspired him to defeat Lindsey, and > defeating Lindsey convinced him to continue the fight with W&H. Huh? It's consistent with Angel's character. He's not a major brain trust either, you know. He thinks best on his feet, in action. I think he knows that the little battles he wins with his own fists and fangs (and honkin' big swords) aren't the main event, but they are very important symbols to him, and he's been cut off from them both by the nature of his job and by his belief that Spike was now the champion who helped the helpless. In beating Lindsey, he was symbolically reasserting his intention to fight. > There's a problem with that scenario, and it's not in the superb > Angel/Cordy side of things. > > But there is a problem with that side of things, as well. Because, while > I truly loved the character work in that half of the show, I have to > wonder, is there a way to retain these kind of characterizations, now > that Cordy is dead and gone? I think that's the big theme of this season. That's why Cordy needs to be gone. > > After all, the Angel/Cordy interactions are grounded in their mutual > trust, respect, and openness, and there doesn't seem to be another > character on the show with whom Angel can share himself so completely. > Not Spike, whom he hates; not the former AI gang, from whom he's hiding > so much. Again, the point and a fine metaphor for great power. I think you're wrong about him hating Spike, though. Spike annoys him personally, but Spike is also a reminder of his past. Angel thinks he hates that past and refuses to look at it. Can't say I blame him. It is pretty awful. But it's his past and he needs to accept it even if he can't (for good reason) love it. He needs to admit a) it happened and will never go away, and b) it's over and he can move on now. Angel sees those two statements as mutually contradictory; he doesn't deny his past, but he seldom looks at it because it sends him into a brood. He doesn't accept his past so much as he just ignores it. This works short term, but not long term. Spike, however, is too noisy to be ignored. He is a loud, yammering, abrasive reminder of that past that Angel can't ignore. He is also an ensouled vampire just starting out on the path Angel has already traversed. Withholding help and support from Spike would truly be a crappy thing for Angel to do, and I see signs that he doesn't intend to do it. He will, I hope, be mentoring Spike, teaching Spike the things he has learned about how to survive in this state. This will be a form of direct atonement that doesn't often come Angel's way. He also taught Spike to be evil; now he will teach him how to reverse that process. It will also force him to confide things he wouldn't otherwise want to tell Spike or anyone else. This won't be a supportive process for Angel like he had with Cordy. She supported him...even when she didn't much like him, even when they weren't friends. That's a very difficult position and one that ultimately almost destroyed Cordy; she made her deal with Skip so she could keep on supporting Angel. She knew (saw actually) that he'd go to peices without her. Angel is now in a position where he needs to be the supportive one, and he doesn't even have the support structure Cordy had. I don't know if he's up to it or not. > And, yes, the distance and isolation makes sense in the new corporate > setting. This is certainly the kind of thing that can happen when you > become a part of the corporate machine. But, after seeing the > alternative illustrated so profoundly by Angel and Cordelia, I'm > starting to wonder, like Angel at the beginning of the episode, if the > new digs are truly worth the cost. Which is very much where the writers want us to be. It's deliberate. They stressed it straight through, not only in the Cordy and Angel scenes, but also in the research with Wes scene. himiko (who clipped a whole bunch of good stuff in the interest of saving space so if you didn't read the original LU post, go back and read it.)

2004-02-05 12:10:25-05:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (George Grattan <GGratone@netscape.net>)


Lord Usher wrote: (Snip) What a superb review and analysis. Well done. Thanks especially for the remarks on all that was wasted with the Lindsey plot--how the questions it raised about Angel's nature now risk being handwaved away--and about the essential value of a strong, equal partner for Angel, now sorely lacking. -- ------- Shalom, Peace, Salaam George

2004-02-05 12:28:58-05:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Randy Money <rbmoney@spamblocklibrary.syr.edu>)


Nicely said. Randy M.

2004-02-05 13:38:53-05:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (EGK <me@privacy.net>)


On 5 Feb 2004 10:30:31 -0800, igs622001@yahoo.com (Ian) wrote: >Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<Xns9486E482C69Dhouseofusher@216.40.28.71>... > >> And, yes, the distance and isolation makes sense in the new corporate >> setting. This is certainly the kind of thing that can happen when you >> become a part of the corporate machine. But, after seeing the >> alternative illustrated so profoundly by Angel and Cordelia, I'm >> starting to wonder, like Angel at the beginning of the episode, if the >> new digs are truly worth the cost. > >Nice summary and all good points. > >I generally agree with everything you said. I think our only >differences in perceiving the episode relate to what we expect from >the series. I infer from your review that you still expect a fair bit >from the series and, thus, are disappointed when things don't work as >well as you'd hoped. > >Yes, the Lyndsey thing was a disappointment and, yes, it was poorly >done. However, having suffered through the last couple of seasons of >BtVS, how could you reasonably expect better? > >Lowered expectations: the secret to enjoying AtS this season. ;) Lyndsey was pretty much equivalent to season 7's Ubie. Seemed all powerful one moment then Angel was able to take him anyway through just force of will. He was beating him up even before his mystical runes started to disappear. As for Lyndsey... Spoilers in case you don't want to know. 0 0 0 0 David Boreanz hinted in his chat that was transcribed here that Lyndsey isn't done yet. Alas, looks more and more like Codelia is though. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- "There would be a lot more civility in this world if people didn't take that as an invitation to walk all over you" - (Calvin and Hobbes)

2004-02-05 16:03:05-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (josie_h@yahoo.com)


SPOILER SPACE > . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Firstly.....Many thanks Lord Usher and other posters - the most readable and intelligent post in *weeks* (only IMO of course)! > > After all, the Angel/Cordy interactions are grounded in their mutual > > trust, respect, and openness, and there doesn't seem to be another > > character on the show with whom Angel can share himself so completely. > > Not Spike, whom he hates; not the former AI gang, from whom he's hiding > > so much. >SNIP< > I think you're wrong about him hating Spike, though. Spike annoys him > personally, but Spike is also a reminder of his past. There have already been scenes alluding to a deeper friendship that both men are hesitant about reinstating the relationship fully for fear of the hurt that *might* ensue. TBH I don't see real hatred.... they act like brothers or best friends that have had a 'falling out'.... Also add that hatred often derives from guilt - personal and shared, 'seeing own failings reflected', issues of loss, deep feelings and shared memories.... and perhaps a little fear on Angel's part that not all the events in the past were 'terrible', 'hateful', or a cause for regret..... this will engender sorting through the events, but in that process come to understand himself far better > This will be a form of direct atonement that doesn't often come > Angel's way. He also taught Spike to be evil; now he will teach him > how to reverse that process. It will also force him to confide things > he wouldn't otherwise want to tell Spike or anyone else. Agreed on *so* many levels - let's hope it comes to pass - then the confidante is *really* on a par... and played well could be most powerful. J

2004-02-05 16:31:05-05:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Randy Money <rbmoney@spamblocklibrary.syr.edu>)


Shawn H wrote: > Clairel <reldevik@usa.net> wrote: > > :> I'm also talking about the way Cordelia was written tonight. I've gotten > :> so used to ANGEL's *girl* characters -- ditzy Harmony; "playing dres-up > :> in big-girl clothes" Eve; cutesy, neurotic Fred -- that it was such a > :> thrill to once again meet a real *woman*. > > : --Well, Harmony certainly is girlishness epitomized, and Eve as a > : villainess is in a whole different category from the heroines, but I > : think you're being very unfair to Fred here. Have you forgotten > : Supersymmetry? Have you forgotten The Magic Bullet? Fred has brains, > : guts, and determination. Too bad about the neurotic mannerisms, but > : every character has to have something idiosyncratic in order to stand > : out from the others as an individual. I dispute the contention that > : Fred isn't a "real woman." > > Yes, that criticism is leveled all to easily, isn't it? Though smart, > resourceful, intrepid, brave and loyal, This is all true, and intermittent. First, let's separate Fred from Amy Acker: Acker has shown she can act and can do comedy. She seems more than capable of dealing with what the writers throw at her -- can't recall the title, but the Spike-centric ep with him going in and out of view and the demon trying to suck him into hell, gave Acker some good things to do and showed Fred as sensitive to some of what goes on around her, and with an essentially good heart. All to the good. But when Fred's not being "smart, resourceful...", which is most of the time, they have her revert to a 14-year-old's emotional level. For a show whose producers indicated they were trying to break away from a teen-oriented show to create something for a more mature audience, and after working hard to develop Wes and Cordy into older, more mature characters, and after stockpiling other older, experienced characters, it was a curious thing to bring on such an emotionally stunted new character. When they met Fred in Pylea, it never occurred to me she'd be a regular. I expected an arc and out. But noooooo... Fred is a secondary character, as written, so far. Still, the studio that found a way to make as shallow a character as Cordelia Chase appealing and touching should be given a chance. On the other hand, they've had, what? three years? and Fred's emotional maturity still wavers in and out of adolescence. Look at it another way: When Cordy/Charisma showed on screen she took control of it. When Charisma was on-screen she reminded me of some of the better TV actors I've seen -- say, E.G. Marshall, Dick Van Dyke, David Jansen, Lucille Ball, Marg Helgenberger. With the probable exception of E. G. Marshall, all of these are or were usually surrounded by people with as wide or wider range as actors, but those actors were somehow less able to command the attention of the viewer. Some of this is personality, and some actors can live off it for years -- Clark Gable and John Wayne (yes, I know I risk don't want to overstate, but the exaggeration helps make the point) certainly did. Jansen could in TV, though it never translated to the movie screen. Some of it is pure energy (helped by good direction and editing). Every scene she was in last night crackled because Carpenter was back as the pure Cordy (as opposed to last season, playing someone -- who? she probably didn't know until late in the day -- playing Cordy) and could let loose that personality. Maybe Amy Acker could do this, too. But that wouldn't be Fred. > she's too goofy and hesitant in her > manner to be cool like uber-confident Cordelia. I too am definitely quite > invested in Fred as a character. I have no problem with that. I just can't see Fred taking over as the dominent female character in a show that I liked in great part because there was a strong female personality in it played by an actress I think became better each year until they reined her in. > But, for this argument, you need someone whom Angel sees as an equal, and, > also, who sees herself that way. The model for the Fred/Angel relationship was > set long ago in Pylea: he's the handsome man who saves her from the monsters. > She's the damsel in distress. Even after all this time, that dynamic remains > between them. > > Even though she's saved HIM on more than one occasion, and he listens to her > expertise, would he take her criticisms of himself seriously? Right on target. I couldn't agree more. The challenge here is for the writers -- and maybe Amy Acker -- to step up and finally bring Fred to true maturity. I suspect it won't happen. Not unless bringing Spike into the mix falls flat on its face. Of course, if that happens, the show may end up cancelled due to insufficient ratings. At least we had a decent ending for Cordy, and good luck to you, Charisma Carpenter. Randy M.

2004-02-05 18:07:26-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (nardo218@yahoo.com)


reldevik@usa.net (Clairel) wrote in message news:<1faed770.0402050942.746dd222@posting.google.com>... > --Well, Harmony certainly is girlishness epitomized, and Eve as a > villainess is in a whole different category from the heroines, but I > think you're being very unfair to Fred here. Have you forgotten > Supersymmetry? Have you forgotten The Magic Bullet? Fred has brains, > guts, and determination. Too bad about the neurotic mannerisms Fred has moments of grownupness, but lately she's been all neurotic mannerisms. I think it's a case of the writers being unfair to Fred. Nice bit about Iago and Othello. But I don't think it's accurate to compare "You're Welcome" to Shakespeare. > --Well, it was Angel's equivalent of Buffy's revelation in Anne (BtVS > 3.1): "I'm Buffy the Vampire Slayer." And it was lame there, too. I think it's a personal preference kinda thing, to prefer subtlety to a blunt cure-all. Aura

2004-02-05 18:12:32-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (nardo218@yahoo.com)


Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in message news:<bvu738$jn7$3@news.fas.harvard.edu>... > But, for this argument, you need someone whom Angel sees as an equal, and, > also, who sees herself that way. The model for the Fred/Angel relationship was > set long ago in Pylea: he's the handsome man who saves her from the monsters. > She's the damsel in distress. Even after all this time, that dynamic remains > between them. > > Even though she's saved HIM on more than one occasion, and he listens to her > expertise, would he take her criticisms of himself seriously? Apt description. The main diffference between Cordy and Fred is that Cordy grew out of her adolescent self-doubt, and Fred hasn't or won't. I say "won't", because Cordy always knew she was the coolest thing ever, Queen C, even when she let Harmony or movie producers shake her confidence. As long as we've known her, Fred, despite her astronomical intellect and her amazing survival of Pylea, Fred still thinks that her accomplishments aren't anything special. Aura

2004-02-05 19:46:26+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu>)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote: : As a series, ANGEL has always had a bit of difficulty deciding what kind : of show it wants to be. Is it gothic horror or dorky sci-fi? Is it raw : and realistic or romantic and fanciful? Is it a thoughtful drama or a : rip-roaring action hour? Very true. : SPOILERS for this week's episode are below... : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : Goddamn you, Cordy. You've ruined me for everyone else. : Ladies and gentlemen, *that* was a leading lady. And, no, I'm not just : talking about the fact that Charisma Carpenter was in fine form tonight, : investing every line with warmth and passion and conviction. Nor the : fact that she managed to display an eye-popping amount of cleavage : without looking even a little bit sleazy. Word. How does she do that, anyway? Eve looks sleazy fully dressed (which she almost usually is), but Cordy has that Earth mama mojo going. : I'm also talking about the way Cordelia was written tonight. I've gotten : so used to ANGEL's *girl* characters -- ditzy Harmony; "playing dres-up : in big-girl clothes" Eve; cutesy, neurotic Fred -- that it was such a : thrill to once again meet a real *woman*. And Charisma picked up on all of that fully, and gave each of her scenes that extra subtextual spin. You kinda have to HAVE an old character to spin subtext like that. All Angel has now are Wesley and Spike, kept in carefully defined boxes. Not co-stars, but supporting players. : God, but the scenes between Angel and Cordy were a breath of fresh air. : These are the kind of characterizations that have marked this show at : its best: : 3. Characters with histories, who remember and continue to be shaped by : the experiences we saw them go through in the past. Exactly! : I'm sure I'm not the only one who was disappointed with the simplistic : explanation for Lindsey's big plan. He got himself all magicked up in : foreign lands, seduced W&H's liaison to the Senior Partners, located and : dug Spike's amulet out of a zillion tons of rubble, and somehow gained : access to a recorporealization spell so powerful that it was beyond the : capabilities of Wolfram & Hart -- all as part of an elaborate plan to... : wait for it... steal Angel's job because he was envious of his power? : Come *on*! I think we're going to have to see Lindsey as the "little bad" of the season. IE, more to come. : "I'm Angel. I beat the bad guys." : Ugh! Can you get more rock-headed and banal than that? I'm not exactly : sure how beating up one relatively low-power bad guy proves to Angel : that he can take on the combined corporate might of Wolfram & Hart, and : the demonic power of its Senior Partners, and emerge with his fingers : and soul still attached. And yet, that's exactly what we're supposed to : believe happened; Cordy's faith inspired him to defeat Lindsey, and : defeating Lindsey convinced him to continue the fight with W&H. Huh? It is an ongoing series, Usher. Cordy's insight and task-mastering made him realize he's not lost yet, and the battles are ongoing. The opposite of sinking into the despair that always tempts him (looks like next week might be another example of that). : wonder, is there a way to retain these kind of characterizations, now : that Cordy is dead and gone? Who else does he respect as much? : of the best scenes of the season: when he talks about the nature of : heroism with Numero Cinqo in "The Cautionary Tale..."; when he tells Wes Talk about empty cliches. : that he finally understands his moral nature at the end of "Lineage"; Wes is the best candidate for this need, I think. And Alexis is criminally underused at the moment, too. : when he and Spike discuss their differing views of evil in "Damage." But : with Cordy gone, and Our Heroes unable to trust even one another, these : moment seem few and far between. Unless Angel actually has gone through a change. I thought another strong scene was there midnight picnic away from spying eyes; anything that preserves the sense that they are moles within the corporate maw, invasive bacteria rather than limited parasites, is a plus. : alternative illustrated so profoundly by Angel and Cordelia, I'm : starting to wonder, like Angel at the beginning of the episode, if the : new digs are truly worth the cost. They could always blow it up real good, I suppose. :) Now the question is, what becomes of Eve with no Lindsey to keep her safe? Shawn

2004-02-05 19:48:04+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu>)


kenm47 <kenm47@ix.netcom.com> wrote: : Thanks LU for an insightful post. I think you're thoughts are dead on. : But not to worry, next week we really travel to comic book world and : time travel to WW2 and Nazis? Does that mean the show is over? They : actually got to Nazis? Is there a Godwin's Law for TV shows that are : discussed on the internet? : For an interesting site discussing Godwin's Law at lemgth, see : http://www.faqs.org/faqs/usenet/legends/godwin/ : Didn't X-Files also have a time travel with Nazis episode? Wasn't that : the big Mulder/Scully fake out kiss that maybe was the (or "a") death : knell there too? It was a dual-time, split-screen episode from when the show was still formally intriguing, and actually quite a strong story on several levels. Character and motivation were explored. They also touched on the Bermuda triangle, I think, so piling on the cliches doesn't have to mean bad. Shawn

2004-02-05 19:55:20+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu>)


Clairel <reldevik@usa.net> wrote: :> I'm also talking about the way Cordelia was written tonight. I've gotten :> so used to ANGEL's *girl* characters -- ditzy Harmony; "playing dres-up :> in big-girl clothes" Eve; cutesy, neurotic Fred -- that it was such a :> thrill to once again meet a real *woman*. : --Well, Harmony certainly is girlishness epitomized, and Eve as a : villainess is in a whole different category from the heroines, but I : think you're being very unfair to Fred here. Have you forgotten : Supersymmetry? Have you forgotten The Magic Bullet? Fred has brains, : guts, and determination. Too bad about the neurotic mannerisms, but : every character has to have something idiosyncratic in order to stand : out from the others as an individual. I dispute the contention that : Fred isn't a "real woman." Yes, that criticism is leveled all to easily, isn't it? Though smart, resourceful, intrepid, brave and loyal, she's too goofy and hesitant in her manner to be cool like uber-confident Cordelia. I too am definitely quite invested in Fred as a character. But, for this argument, you need someone whom Angel sees as an equal, and, also, who sees herself that way. The model for the Fred/Angel relationship was set long ago in Pylea: he's the handsome man who saves her from the monsters. She's the damsel in distress. Even after all this time, that dynamic remains between them. Even though she's saved HIM on more than one occasion, and he listens to her expertise, would he take her criticisms of himself seriously? :> access to a recorporealization spell so powerful that it was beyond the :> capabilities of Wolfram & Hart -- all as part of an elaborate plan to... :> wait for it... steal Angel's job because he was envious of his power? : --Actually I didn't see how Lindsey's plan would result in him being : able to "steal Angel's job." Where are you getting that idea? He mentioned that Angel, as "head" of W&H, now had the position he always coveted. Never mind that, when he left LA last time, he'd clearly abandoned that dream as unworkable. :> the demonic power of its Senior Partners, and emerge with his fingers :> and soul still attached. And yet, that's exactly what we're supposed to :> believe happened; Cordy's faith inspired him to defeat Lindsey, and :> defeating Lindsey convinced him to continue the fight with W&H. Huh? : --Well, it was Angel's equivalent of Buffy's revelation in Anne (BtVS : 3.1): "I'm Buffy the Vampire Slayer." This came in response to a : relatively low-level threat by a low-level scumbag too (I can't even : remember the name of the guy who was running the enslavement scheme). : But it was enough to get Buffy fighting again instead of moping, and : that's what's important. Likewise, Angel realized in 5.12 that he had : to set himself against the forces of malice, be they grand or petty. Apt comparison, I think. Soldiers at ME get tired of the battle, and have to be coaxed to pick up the sword sometimes. Shawn

2004-02-05 22:53:07-06:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com>)


igs622001@yahoo.com (Ian) wrote in news:5aa58763.0402051030.c0293fb@posting.google.com: > Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message > news:<Xns9486E482C69Dhouseofusher@216.40.28.71>... > >> And, yes, the distance and isolation makes sense in the new corporate >> setting. This is certainly the kind of thing that can happen when you >> become a part of the corporate machine. But, after seeing the >> alternative illustrated so profoundly by Angel and Cordelia, I'm >> starting to wonder, like Angel at the beginning of the episode, if >> the new digs are truly worth the cost. > > Nice summary and all good points. Thanks! And thanks to everyone else who had nice things to say about my humble thoughts. :) > Yes, the Lyndsey thing was a disappointment and, yes, it was poorly > done. However, having suffered through the last couple of seasons of > BtVS, how could you reasonably expect better? Well, I'm in the minority that thinks ANGEL really pulled itself back together at the end of season 4 for a fantastic final arc, so I know they're still capable of greatness under difficult conditions, despite the evidence of BUFFY's season 7. Or, at least they *were* last year. Perhaps this season's budget- slashing makes a bigger difference in overall quality than one would like to believe. I wish the WB would take some of the money SMALLVILLE wastes every week on pointless CGI swoopy-doops and use it to buy the ANGEL staff a few new sets, or at least replace their burnt-out lightbulbs. > Also, just out of curiousity, did the short exchange involving Harmony > as being "technically evil" change your views, as we were discussing a > while ago? Oh, not at all. IMHO, the "yay for torture" sequence was pure David Fury, specifically designed to reinforce the idea that Harmony is irredeemably evil, just like I said. Why, was there something mitigating there that I missed? -- Lord Usher "I'm here to kill you, not to judge you."

2004-02-05 23:05:20+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu>)


Randy Money <rbmoney@spamblocklibrary.syr.edu> wrote: : Shawn H wrote: :> :> Yes, that criticism is leveled all to easily, isn't it? Though smart, :> resourceful, intrepid, brave and loyal, : This is all true, and intermittent. : First, let's separate Fred from Amy Acker: Acker has shown she can act : and can do comedy. She seems more than capable of dealing with what the : writers throw at her -- can't recall the title, but the Spike-centric ep True, writing has been more of a problem with Angel than acting, for the most part. : But when Fred's not being "smart, resourceful...", which is most of the : time, they have her revert to a 14-year-old's emotional level. For a Does "cutesy" and "shy" equal 14-year-old automatically? : Look at it another way: When Cordy/Charisma showed on screen she took : control of it. When Charisma was on-screen she reminded me of some of : the better TV actors I've seen -- say, E.G. Marshall, Dick Van Dyke, : David Jansen, Lucille Ball, Marg Helgenberger. With the probable : exception of E. G. Marshall, all of these are or were usually surrounded : by people with as wide or wider range as actors, but those actors were : somehow less able to command the attention of the viewer. Some of this Considering "Birthday," why not add Mary Tyler Moore to that list? She sometimes outshone Dick on his show, and certainly a link was made between her solo show and Cordy's fantasy alternate life. : energy (helped by good direction and editing). Every scene she was in : last night crackled because Carpenter was back as the pure Cordy (as : opposed to last season, playing someone -- who? she probably didn't know : until late in the day -- playing Cordy) and could let loose that : personality. Even then, in the ep when she and Willow were warring over freeing Angel's soul, she touched on something with the possessive demon's character. : Maybe Amy Acker could do this, too. But that wouldn't be Fred. She has done it, as in The Magic Bullet, or Supersymmetry. Can she do it while others are on screen is the question. :> But, for this argument, you need someone whom Angel sees as an equal, and, :> also, who sees herself that way. The model for the Fred/Angel relationship was :> set long ago in Pylea: he's the handsome man who saves her from the monsters. :> She's the damsel in distress. Even after all this time, that dynamic remains :> between them. :> :> Even though she's saved HIM on more than one occasion, and he listens to her :> expertise, would he take her criticisms of himself seriously? : Right on target. I couldn't agree more. : The challenge here is for the writers -- and maybe Amy Acker -- to step : up and finally bring Fred to true maturity. : I suspect it won't happen. Not unless bringing Spike into the mix falls : flat on its face. Of course, if that happens, the show may end up : cancelled due to insufficient ratings. Surprisingly (maybe because he came to her in a supplicatory relationship), Fred is quite mature when it comes to Spike. : At least we had a decent ending for Cordy, and good luck to you, : Charisma Carpenter. Hear hear!! Shawn

2004-02-06 01:26:13-06:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com>)


reldevik@usa.net (Clairel) wrote in news:1faed770.0402050942.746dd222@posting.google.com: Spoilers for this week's episode... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . >> I'm also talking about the way Cordelia was written tonight. I've >> gotten so used to ANGEL's *girl* characters -- ditzy Harmony; >> "playing dres-up in big-girl clothes" Eve; cutesy, neurotic Fred -- >> that it was such a thrill to once again meet a real *woman*. > > --Well, Harmony certainly is girlishness epitomized, No argument there. > and Eve as a villainess is in a whole different category from the > heroines, But "villain" doesn't automatically mean "little girl." Darla was a villain, but she was also a thoughtful, mature, assertive woman. Eve's a cheerleader pretending to be a femme fatale -- the affected "sexy" demeanor, the awkward naughty remarks, the stilted "rah, rah, team" chipperness. > but I think you're being very unfair to Fred here. Have you forgotten > Supersymmetry? Have you forgotten The Magic Bullet? Fred has brains, > guts, and determination. Sure, Fred is book-smart and battle-ready, but that doesn't mean she's a "real woman," at least not the way I'm using the term. For that, she'd need: 1. A more nuanced emotional intelligence. When was the last time Fred showed any real insight into what another character was feeling? She's always the person who offers *sympathy* to those who are suffering, but never any real *understanding* of what they're going through. 2. A more mature sexuality. More often than not, Fred's been portrayed as a passive romantic *object*, gaping at all the boys who, gosh-o- golly, want to win her heart, and not as someone with strong desires and preferences of her own. 3. A more active role in the drama. Fred tends to react rather than act, and is caught up in other people's decisions far more often than she makes any of her own. (Note, for instance, that she's the one member of AI who didn't make an active on-screen decision to join W&H; she just sort of went along with the idea because everyone else decided to.) > -- and it took this episode to remind me how important a >> role that is, and how much the show has suffered from its exclusion. > > --*Angel* has *personally* suffered from its exclusion, yes; he has > been lost and drifting; but as I suggested above, the drama may > actually benefit from Angel being now under the necessity of thinking > for himself and meeting challenges sans Cordy. As I said at the end of my original post, I do understand this, and for a while it seemed like a good enough explanation. But this episode showed me how much I miss this aspect of the series, and made me wonder if the loss is worth the potentially interesting complications it creates. But there's another aspect to the issue that I've just realized -- Angel's equal and confidant(e) doesn't need to be a trusted friend like Cordy. Think back to early season 2, when the character who knew Angel better than he knew himself, with whom he could share things he didn't dare share with anyone else, was *Darla*. Not a friend at all, but an enemy, who was nevertheless the noirish leading lady of that part of the series. Imagine if they'd done the same thing with, say, the character of Eve. Made her not an annoying little phony parroting the demands of the Senior Partners or Lindsey, but a smart and perceptive woman with her own agenda, who could really get under Angel's skin. Someone whom Angel couldn't dismiss with an easy, "Shut up, you evil puppet" -- someone he found himself listening to and confiding in despite himself. That way, you maintain Angel's estrangement from his friends without sacrificing this important window into Our Hero's character. It's interesting -- you can sort of see Joss leaning in this direction with some of the Angel/Eve scenes in "Conviction" (especially their discussion about Connor), but it's an idea that never bears fruit. I wonder if there were bigger plans for Eve that had to be rethought once the writers realized that the character wasn't working. (And I wonder how much better the character might've worked if she'd been played by the more womanly and dignified Morena Baccarin of FIREFLY fame, as originally intended.) >> I'm sure I'm not the only one who was disappointed with the >> simplistic explanation for Lindsey's big plan. He got himself all >> magicked up in foreign lands, seduced W&H's liaison to the Senior >> Partners, located and dug Spike's amulet out of a zillion tons of >> rubble, and somehow gained access to a recorporealization spell so >> powerful that it was beyond the capabilities of Wolfram & Hart -- all >> as part of an elaborate plan to... wait for it... steal Angel's job >> because he was envious of his power? > > --Actually I didn't see how Lindsey's plan would result in him being > able to "steal Angel's job." Where are you getting that idea? Actually, I'm not sure how I got that idea. I may have made it up... > I will say this. I was surprised to find that Lindsey's motivation > for messing with Angel was envy and resentment. Somehow I thought > there was more to it than that. But then again, envy and resentment > were the feelings Lindsey was voicing in Eve's hearing (and later, > during the fight, to Angel). Maybe Lindsey just wanted to present his > motivations that way to Eve and Angel. Maybe there's actually more > going on inside Lindsey than he was willing to reveal to Eve and > Angel. That's all well and good, but unspoken motivations can't do anything to improve the complexity of an episode in which they are not expressed. If a character arc falls in the forest and there's no one there to hear it, does it still make a sound? > Lindsey's petty malice, if that is indeed all there was to Lindsey's > motivation--and certainly it's what Lindsey expressed to Angel, so > it's what Angel thinks was motivating Lindsey--illustrates what's > wrong with W&H, and what W&H does to people. It should give Angel > pause and make him wonder, "Is that the sort of person I'll become if > I stay here?" Except that's *not* what Lindsey became by working for Wolfram & Hart. It's what he became by accepting that W&H offered an empty existence, and *leaving* it. What sort of says the *opposite* of what you suggest, no? And, hey, maybe that would've been an interesting way to take the arc -- Angel realizing that running away from your demons doesn't solve anything, that he'd only end up regretting what he could've achieved if he'd stayed and fought, just like Lindsey. But that's not where the arc went; that's not the revelation Angel actually had. We can try to fanwank a more complex explanation for Angel's new epiphany, but in the end that's all it is -- a fanwank. > Yes, it was a cheap trick Lindsey played on Angel and Spike, setting > up Spike as the supposed New Champion of the PTB and making Angel feel > unimportant and left out--but it's in the nature of malicious bad guys > to play cheap tricks on the good guys, isn't it? It's not the cheap trick that bothers me; as I said, it's the fact that the episode seemed to use the cheap trick as an excuse to dismiss the real and pressing issues that the cheap trick raised. See below. >> Well, the questions themselves shouldn't be a dismissed as a trick, >> because they're legitimate questions, no matter what crazed Angel- >> infatuated lawyer posed them. Considering his new position, >> considering everything he did last season to Jasmine and Connor, >> Angel *should* be asking himself, "Am I still a hero? Is a hero even >> what the world needs me to be?" To handwave away these serious >> questions by discrediting the questioner is the worst kind of >> rhetorical bait-and-switch. > > --But I don't think that's what's going on. Just because Lindsey was > duplicitous and had his own agenda doesn't mean the questions have > been dismissed. Well, that remains to be seen. But the episode didn't give me much hope, seeing as how it ended with Spike shrugging off Lindsey's promise of a great destiny, and Angel dismissing his troubles as just Lindsey doing everything he could to make Angel lose hope... > Again, see Cordy's last remarks to Angel (the "God's own truth" part). That's a separate issue, though. Everyone may agree that Angel compromised himself by joing W&H, but they've dismissed the *other* questions -- whether Angel is still a hero, whether he's outlived his divine destiny. Now, maybe future episodes will get back into these issues, but *this* episode brought them to a premature and unsatisfying conclusion. >> "I'm Angel. I beat the bad guys." >> >> Ugh! Can you get more rock-headed and banal than that? I'm not >> exactly sure how beating up one relatively low-power bad guy proves >> to Angel that he can take on the combined corporate might of Wolfram >> & Hart, and the demonic power of its Senior Partners, and emerge with >> his fingers and soul still attached. And yet, that's exactly what >> we're supposed to believe happened; Cordy's faith inspired him to >> defeat Lindsey, and defeating Lindsey convinced him to continue the >> fight with W&H. Huh? > > --Well, it was Angel's equivalent of Buffy's revelation in Anne (BtVS > 3.1): "I'm Buffy the Vampire Slayer." Which I also hated, because it represented a *regression* on Buffy's part -- her recapturing an identity that should've been blown to smithereens by "Becoming 2" -- and not genuine development. > But it was enough to get Buffy fighting again instead of moping, and > that's what's important. Likewise, Angel realized in 5.12 that he had > to set himself against the forces of malice, be they grand or petty. No, it's more specific than that. He realized that he had the power to *defeat* said forces of malice, that W&H may be evil but he's strong enough to resist the evil and come out on top in the end. And I still don't see how defeating Lindsey got him to that point. -- Lord Usher "I'm here to kill you, not to judge you."

2004-02-06 02:05:07-06:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com>)


Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in news:bvu6ii$jn7$1@news.fas.harvard.edu: >: SPOILERS for this week's episode are below... >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: . >: "I'm Angel. I beat the bad guys." > >: Ugh! Can you get more rock-headed and banal than that? I'm not >: exactly sure how beating up one relatively low-power bad guy proves >: to Angel that he can take on the combined corporate might of Wolfram >: & Hart, and the demonic power of its Senior Partners, and emerge with >: his fingers and soul still attached. And yet, that's exactly what >: we're supposed to believe happened; Cordy's faith inspired him to >: defeat Lindsey, and defeating Lindsey convinced him to continue the >: fight with W&H. Huh? > > It is an ongoing series, Usher. Cordy's insight and task-mastering > made him realize he's not lost yet, and the battles are ongoing. Oh, sure. I just don't understand how he made even *that* realization. How do he make the leap from "I can kick the ass of this weird little lawyer" to "I can hold my own against the most evilest corporation in the multiverse"? The one doesn't seem to follow from t'other. >: wonder, is there a way to retain these kind of characterizations, now >: that Cordy is dead and gone? > > Who else does he respect as much? Well, that depends. Have they kicked Elisabeth Rohm off LAW & ORDER yet? Or have they finally put Eliza Dushku's TRU CALLING out of its misery? No? Then I guess the answer is "no one." -- Lord Usher "I'm here to kill you, not to judge you."

2004-02-06 09:20:31+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Chris Zabel <alephnull@earthlink.net>)


"Lord Usher" <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:Xns9486E482C69Dhouseofusher@216.40.28.71... > I'm sure I'm not the only one who was disappointed with the simplistic > explanation for Lindsey's big plan. He got himself all magicked up in > foreign lands, seduced W&H's liaison to the Senior Partners, located and > dug Spike's amulet out of a zillion tons of rubble, and somehow gained > access to a recorporealization spell so powerful that it was beyond the > capabilities of Wolfram & Hart -- all as part of an elaborate plan to... > wait for it... steal Angel's job because he was envious of his power? You're analysis of this episode is dead-on and the main reason why I didn't give it a higher score in the poll. ME could've done a lot more with the Lindsey plotline than what happened in YW.

2004-02-06 09:41:08-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Mark Jones <sinanju@pacifier.com>)


Lord Usher wrote: > Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in > news:bvu6ii$jn7$1@news.fas.harvard.edu: > > >>: SPOILERS for this week's episode are below... >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>It is an ongoing series, Usher. Cordy's insight and task-mastering >>made him realize he's not lost yet, and the battles are ongoing. > > > Oh, sure. I just don't understand how he made even *that* realization. > > How do he make the leap from "I can kick the ass of this weird little > lawyer" to "I can hold my own against the most evilest corporation in the > multiverse"? The one doesn't seem to follow from t'other. One question I haven't seen much discussion of (though I may have missed it) is Gunn's assertion that the Senior Partners aren't just going to let them walk away. Now, yeah, Angel suggested that Gunn was saying that because maybe he didn't _want_ to walk away, but... Doesn't it bother anyone that "total control, lock, stock and barrel" is now being played as "but the Senior Partners are still calling the shots"? I suspect I know where ME wants to go with this--the whole "lie down with dogs, get up with fleas" thing--but it's not working for me precisely because Angel & company have NEVER tested their theoretical total control. Which, if I'd been given "total control" of an evil law firm, I'd have done first thing out of the gate. I KNOW they're evil, and I SUSPECT they're up to no good despite (or BECAUSE of) their protests that I'm just so goddamn manly that they concede my victory without a fuss. So let's just see what happens when I do things I know they won't like--do they grin and bear it, or what? What if I print out a list of their clients, the crimes said clients have committed, decide which ones are capital crimes in MY eyes (I'm in complete control, after all) and start working my way down the list with various implements of destruction? Are the Senior Partners going to stop me? Well, then, I'm not as completely independent as they claimed--but at least now I KNOW that. Will they try to persuade me not to do it? "But...but...that will destroy W&H as a going concern!" So what? I'm not interested in keeping W&H going; they gave the company to me, and if I want to run it into the ground, that's my choice. Isn't it? Angel's never done that. Sure, he's instituted a "zero tolerance" policy, but hell, that's hardly new to W&H. Only the actions leading to summary capital punishment have changed. He's found himself increasingly hamstrung by rules he's _accepted_, handed down from on high by Eve or by Gunn, without ever seriously questioning why he, as the big boss should have to accept them. And the arguments used to persuade him all presuppose the necessity of keeping W&H going indefinitely. Why? Spending two, three, five years liquidating W&H's LA assets (and liquidating its client list while I'm at it) might do a hell of a lot more good than pretending to be CEO while my underlings go about their evil business as usual (with a few cosmetic concessions to my squeamishness). But Angel has never seriously considered this. He gives lip service to the idea, but that's it. If he'd started out like a kid in an evil candy store, smiting the ungodly and destroying priceless-but-evil treasures in the W&H vaults (after all, they're _his_ now, right?) and only slowly been restrained by arguments about the long view and compromising to achieve bigger goals down the road, I'd find it a lot more convincing. Nor would this have taken half a season. A couple of scenes of Angel gleefully smashing various artifacts down in the W&H vault (or melting them down, or whatever) while Eve winces and tries in vain to cajole him into not doing that would have helped a lot. And, frankly, spending 2-5 years liquidating W&H is more than enough to last the show's probable lifetime. Watching Eve holler like a stuck pig (on behalf of the Senior Partners) as Angel relentlessly works at turning W&H into smoking rubble would be worth it.

2004-02-06 10:49:56-05:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Randy Money <rbmoney@spamblocklibrary.syr.edu>)


Shawn H wrote: > Randy Money <rbmoney@spamblocklibrary.syr.edu> wrote: > : Shawn H wrote: [...] > : But when Fred's not being "smart, resourceful...", which is most of the > : time, they have her revert to a 14-year-old's emotional level. For a > > Does "cutesy" and "shy" equal 14-year-old automatically? No, but here '14-year-old emotional level' seems to translate to 'cutesy' and 'shy'. It probably doesn't help that Acker looks so young; that might be because of clothing and make-up choices, of course, and I think I see a trend in addressing these of late. > : Look at it another way: When Cordy/Charisma showed on screen she took > : control of it. When Charisma was on-screen she reminded me of some of > : the better TV actors I've seen -- say, E.G. Marshall, Dick Van Dyke, > : David Jansen, Lucille Ball, Marg Helgenberger. With the probable > : exception of E. G. Marshall, all of these are or were usually surrounded > : by people with as wide or wider range as actors, but those actors were > : somehow less able to command the attention of the viewer. Some of this > > Considering "Birthday," why not add Mary Tyler Moore to that list? She > sometimes outshone Dick on his show, and certainly a link was made between her > solo show and Cordy's fantasy alternate life. Yes. Until that ep it never occurred to me how much she looked like MTM if MTM had been playing roles in which the woman was confident and foregrounded her sexuality a little more. > : energy (helped by good direction and editing). Every scene she was in > : last night crackled because Carpenter was back as the pure Cordy (as > : opposed to last season, playing someone -- who? she probably didn't know > : until late in the day -- playing Cordy) and could let loose that > : personality. > > Even then, in the ep when she and Willow were warring over freeing Angel's > soul, she touched on something with the possessive demon's character. That may have been CC's best ep of last season because she and Hannagan played off each other like they had never stopped working directly together. > : Maybe Amy Acker could do this, too. But that wouldn't be Fred. > > She has done it, as in The Magic Bullet, or Supersymmetry. Can she do it while > others are on screen is the question. Argh. There's my lack of memory again. I know I've seen both, but can't recall the stories. Oddly, maybe, I found Acker very appealing in the Boreanaz directed ep. in Angel's hallucination; moreso than in her moments outside his hallucination. When she was in her lab coat, she looked adult and fetching. I'd like to see more of that Fred. I'll also agree that she's come off well when dealing with Spike. > : At least we had a decent ending for Cordy, and good luck to you, > : Charisma Carpenter. > > Hear hear!! > > Shawn Yup. The energy and snap CC brought to "You're Welcome" made up, for me, for the eps' deficiencies. And, unlike some others here, I felt the ending was one of the more convincing dramatic moments from CC in the course of the series. I've always found her emotional scenes a bit over-played, especially when she's trying hard to appear earnest. Randy M.

2004-02-06 10:54:14-05:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Randy Money <rbmoney@spamblocklibrary.syr.edu>)


Lord Usher wrote: > Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in > news:bvu6ii$jn7$1@news.fas.harvard.edu: > > >>: SPOILERS for this week's episode are below... >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: . >>: "I'm Angel. I beat the bad guys." >> >>: Ugh! Can you get more rock-headed and banal than that? I'm not >>: exactly sure how beating up one relatively low-power bad guy proves >>: to Angel that he can take on the combined corporate might of Wolfram >>: & Hart, and the demonic power of its Senior Partners, and emerge with >>: his fingers and soul still attached. And yet, that's exactly what >>: we're supposed to believe happened; Cordy's faith inspired him to >>: defeat Lindsey, and defeating Lindsey convinced him to continue the >>: fight with W&H. Huh? >> >>It is an ongoing series, Usher. Cordy's insight and task-mastering >>made him realize he's not lost yet, and the battles are ongoing. > > > Oh, sure. I just don't understand how he made even *that* realization. > > How do he make the leap from "I can kick the ass of this weird little > lawyer" to "I can hold my own against the most evilest corporation in the > multiverse"? The one doesn't seem to follow from t'other. Just to point out, this is classic Buffy season plotting: little steps leading to the bigger steps (and sacrifices) to come. Small victories build confidence that can make or break a person in the bigger battles. Randy M.

2004-02-06 11:50:55-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (reldevik@usa.net)


nardo218@yahoo.com (Ice Queen) wrote in message news:<e7ab6382.0402051812.704ef45b@posting.google.com>... > Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in message news:<bvu738$jn7$3@news.fas.harvard.edu>... > > But, for this argument, you need someone whom Angel sees as an equal, and, > > also, who sees herself that way. The model for the Fred/Angel relationship was > > set long ago in Pylea: he's the handsome man who saves her from the monsters. > > She's the damsel in distress. Even after all this time, that dynamic remains > > between them. > > > > Even though she's saved HIM on more than one occasion, and he listens to her > > expertise, would he take her criticisms of himself seriously? > > Apt description. The main diffference between Cordy and Fred is that > Cordy grew out of her adolescent self-doubt, and Fred hasn't or won't. --I disagree. Fred has strong moral convictions, a strong sense of what's right. There has already been an occasion when Angel was wrong and Fred knew she ws right, and she made Angel take her criticisms of him seriously. That was in episode 5.4, "Hellbound," when Angel called Fred on the carpet to complain about the money she was spending getting Spike solidified. Fred first of all made it clear that she didn't just have a girlish crush on Spike, and that she was helping him because that's what their mission was, to help people. Then when Angel had to admit that the real reason he didn't want Spike solid again was because Angel feared Spike getting back together with Buffy, Fred called Angel on the immorality of that: "Is that what this is really about? You're afraid he'll get back with your ex?" After Fred confronted him with the moral realities, Angel had to capitulate and allow Fred to go on with her efforts to get Spike solidified. Fred showed plenty of backbone and maturity in that scene, as she has done countless other times as well. Look at how Fred has called out both Lorne and Wes for treating her in a patronizing manner, just in the last few episodes. She has actually shown a lot of confidence and self-assertiveness. It is sometimes said that Fred was a damsel in distress whom Angel saved in Pylea, but I actually see her as the resourceful young woman who survived five years in that hostile environment and was the only one who knew how the right way to handle Angel in his pure demon form. When Angel, after seeing what he looked like, collapsed weeping on the floor of Fred's cave and Fred comforted him, he was the weak one and she was the strong, salvific one. That's how I see Fred. Clairel

2004-02-06 12:23:13-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (reldevik@usa.net)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<Xns9487E398A920houseofusher@216.40.28.74>... > reldevik@usa.net (Clairel) wrote in > news:1faed770.0402050942.746dd222@posting.google.com: > > Spoilers for this week's episode... > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > >> I'm also talking about the way Cordelia was written tonight. I've > >> gotten so used to ANGEL's *girl* characters -- ditzy Harmony; > >> "playing dres-up in big-girl clothes" Eve; cutesy, neurotic Fred -- > >> that it was such a thrill to once again meet a real *woman*. > > > > --Well, Harmony certainly is girlishness epitomized, > > No argument there. > > > and Eve as a villainess is in a whole different category from the > > heroines, > > But "villain" doesn't automatically mean "little girl." --No, I'm just saying I don't necessarily want the same things from heroines as I want from villainesses, and I find it strange to discuss the two together. Darla was a > villain, but she was also a thoughtful, mature, assertive woman. --And I suppose you might say the same of Lilah. Many viewers wanted a Lilah clone when Eve showed up to take Lilah's place. But instead ME went for a character who contrasted with Lilah. Hence the disappointment. But what if ME was never trying for a second Lilah? Eve's a > cheerleader pretending to be a femme fatale -- the affected "sexy" > demeanor, the awkward naughty remarks, the stilted "rah, rah, team" > chipperness. --Well, I think it's different and interesting: the brittle ingenue as villainess. It works for me. Eve is very different from Darla, from Lilah, from any femme fatale I can think of. I like the originality of her character. > > but I think you're being very unfair to Fred here. Have you forgotten > > Supersymmetry? Have you forgotten The Magic Bullet? Fred has brains, > > guts, and determination. > > Sure, Fred is book-smart and battle-ready, but that doesn't mean she's a > "real woman," at least not the way I'm using the term. For that, she'd > need: > > 1. A more nuanced emotional intelligence. When was the last time Fred > showed any real insight into what another character was feeling? She's > always the person who offers *sympathy* to those who are suffering, but > never any real *understanding* of what they're going through. --You would have to substantiate that assertion. Right now I see no basis for it at all. I see Fred having both sympathy and understanding: for example, when she understood where Wes was coming from during the period of his estrangement from the team, and she reached out to him on several occasions. > 2. A more mature sexuality. More often than not, Fred's been portrayed > as a passive romantic *object*, gaping at all the boys who, gosh-o- > golly, want to win her heart, and not as someone with strong desires and > preferences of her own. --Totally unfair and inaccurate. She has always been the one to make the move, to decide on the guy *she* wanted. Look back at "Waiting in the Wings," and the way she and Gunn ended up together. It was because *she* decided what she wanted, and she went for it. I expect it will always be that way for Fred--she may enjoy having more than one admirer, but no one can talk her into anything until and unless she decides it's what she wants. > 3. A more active role in the drama. Fred tends to react rather than act, > and is caught up in other people's decisions far more often than she > makes any of her own. (Note, for instance, that she's the one member of > AI who didn't make an active on-screen decision to join W&H; she just > sort of went along with the idea because everyone else decided to.) --I still think you're ignoring a lot of things about Fred that have been shown over the years. She has been in 60 episodes to date. But I talked more about her elsewhere on this thread, so I'll refer you to that. > > -- and it took this episode to remind me how important a > >> role that is, and how much the show has suffered from its exclusion. > > > > --*Angel* has *personally* suffered from its exclusion, yes; he has > > been lost and drifting; but as I suggested above, the drama may > > actually benefit from Angel being now under the necessity of thinking > > for himself and meeting challenges sans Cordy. > > As I said at the end of my original post, I do understand this, and for > a while it seemed like a good enough explanation. But this episode > showed me how much I miss this aspect of the series, and made me wonder > if the loss is worth the potentially interesting complications it > creates. --The series would stagnate if everything always remained the same. And so would Angel's character. At a certain point, you have to let go of a toddler's hand and let the kid try to take a few steps on his own. Angel cannot continue to be somebody who is dependent on Cordy's admonitions to keep him doing the right thing, incapable of doing anything right without her. > But there's another aspect to the issue that I've just realized -- > Angel's equal and confidant(e) doesn't need to be a trusted friend like > Cordy. Think back to early season 2, when the character who knew Angel > better than he knew himself, with whom he could share things he didn't > dare share with anyone else, was *Darla*. Not a friend at all, but an > enemy, who was nevertheless the noirish leading lady of that part of the > series. > > Imagine if they'd done the same thing with, say, the character of Eve. > Made her not an annoying little phony parroting the demands of the > Senior Partners or Lindsey, but a smart and perceptive woman with her > own agenda, who could really get under Angel's skin. Someone whom Angel > couldn't dismiss with an easy, "Shut up, you evil puppet" -- someone he > found himself listening to and confiding in despite himself. > > That way, you maintain Angel's estrangement from his friends without > sacrificing this important window into Our Hero's character. --The ironic thing is that you don't seem to realize what you've just described is what's evolving between Spike and Angel. Spike gets under Angel's skin, and Spike has made some very good and valid points to Angel from episode 5.2 onward. I noticed you skipped the paragraph about the Spike-Angel relationship that was in my post--the paragraph in which I pointed out how oversimplified your view is of their relationship, and what complexities there actually are in it. Spike is somebody from Angel's past, as Darla was. Spike is, however, more morally aware than Darla was even when she was human and ensouled for a while--and he's becoming more and more morally aware with every episode of AtS. Does it have to be a female character who plays off of Angel in the way you're asking for? Does there have to be sexual tension involved? Of course some people see that between Spike and Angel anyway--but that's really not my concern. All I ask is for a somewhat tense, adversarial relationship between Angel and someone who can argue a different point of view and set Angel straight when he goes off track. Why doesn't Spike work for you in that way? Whether he works for you or not, I'm pretty sure this is what ME is aiming at. > It's interesting -- you can sort of see Joss leaning in this direction > with some of the Angel/Eve scenes in "Conviction" (especially their > discussion about Connor), but it's an idea that never bears fruit. I > wonder if there were bigger plans for Eve that had to be rethought once > the writers realized that the character wasn't working. (And I wonder > how much better the character might've worked if she'd been played by > the more womanly and dignified Morena Baccarin of FIREFLY fame, as > originally intended.) --We may never know unless somebody someday writes a tell-all book, but Sarah Thompson/Eve is working fine for me. Opinion is not unanimously against her, whatever you may say. > >> I'm sure I'm not the only one who was disappointed with the > >> simplistic explanation for Lindsey's big plan. He got himself all > >> magicked up in foreign lands, seduced W&H's liaison to the Senior > >> Partners, located and dug Spike's amulet out of a zillion tons of > >> rubble, and somehow gained access to a recorporealization spell so > >> powerful that it was beyond the capabilities of Wolfram & Hart -- all > >> as part of an elaborate plan to... wait for it... steal Angel's job > >> because he was envious of his power? > > > > --Actually I didn't see how Lindsey's plan would result in him being > > able to "steal Angel's job." Where are you getting that idea? > > Actually, I'm not sure how I got that idea. I may have made it up... --Yes, I'm quite sure you did. > > I will say this. I was surprised to find that Lindsey's motivation > > for messing with Angel was envy and resentment. Somehow I thought > > there was more to it than that. But then again, envy and resentment > > were the feelings Lindsey was voicing in Eve's hearing (and later, > > during the fight, to Angel). Maybe Lindsey just wanted to present his > > motivations that way to Eve and Angel. Maybe there's actually more > > going on inside Lindsey than he was willing to reveal to Eve and > > Angel. > > That's all well and good, but unspoken motivations can't do anything to > improve the complexity of an episode in which they are not expressed. If > a character arc falls in the forest and there's no one there to hear it, > does it still make a sound? --Come on, LU. For someone who follows spoilers, you seem oddly impatient to have everything resolved in a single episode. Why can't you wait for a return engagement for more of Lindsey's motivations to be revealed? (And, spoilerphobes who may be reading this, I'm not revealing anything. I'm just saying that when a guy vanishes through a portal like that, you shouldn't expect it to be the last you'll ever see of him, because that's not in the nature of serial drama. That's all.) > > Lindsey's petty malice, if that is indeed all there was to Lindsey's > > motivation--and certainly it's what Lindsey expressed to Angel, so > > it's what Angel thinks was motivating Lindsey--illustrates what's > > wrong with W&H, and what W&H does to people. It should give Angel > > pause and make him wonder, "Is that the sort of person I'll become if > > I stay here?" > > Except that's *not* what Lindsey became by working for Wolfram & Hart. > It's what he became by accepting that W&H offered an empty existence, > and *leaving* it. What sort of says the *opposite* of what you suggest, > no? --What I'm saying is that Lindsey was affected by his years with W&H, and there was carry-over from those years into whatever new life Lindsey drove off to at the end of the Evil Hand episode. He's not the same Lindsey he would have been had he gone directly from the OU Law School to pro-bono work in a little storefront office on Classen Avenue, and had never been hired by W&H. Even realizing that he wanted out, and that he couldn't stomach everything W&H required him to do, evidently didn't keep Lindsey from having become a petty, malicious, vengeful person. > And, hey, maybe that would've been an interesting way to take the arc -- > Angel realizing that running away from your demons doesn't solve > anything, that he'd only end up regretting what he could've achieved if > he'd stayed and fought, just like Lindsey. But that's not where the arc > went; that's not the revelation Angel actually had. We can try to > fanwank a more complex explanation for Angel's new epiphany, but in the > end that's all it is -- a fanwank. --Or a possibility for something that may be explored more throughly and made more explicit in future episodes. > > Yes, it was a cheap trick Lindsey played on Angel and Spike, setting > > up Spike as the supposed New Champion of the PTB and making Angel feel > > unimportant and left out--but it's in the nature of malicious bad guys > > to play cheap tricks on the good guys, isn't it? > > It's not the cheap trick that bothers me; as I said, it's the fact that > the episode seemed to use the cheap trick as an excuse to dismiss the > real and pressing issues that the cheap trick raised. See below. > > >> Well, the questions themselves shouldn't be a dismissed as a trick, > >> because they're legitimate questions, no matter what crazed Angel- > >> infatuated lawyer posed them. Considering his new position, > >> considering everything he did last season to Jasmine and Connor, > >> Angel *should* be asking himself, "Am I still a hero? Is a hero even > >> what the world needs me to be?" To handwave away these serious > >> questions by discrediting the questioner is the worst kind of > >> rhetorical bait-and-switch. > > > > --But I don't think that's what's going on. Just because Lindsey was > > duplicitous and had his own agenda doesn't mean the questions have > > been dismissed. > > Well, that remains to be seen. But the episode didn't give me much hope --But you do follow spoilers, so why do you make it sound as if this episode is all you have to go on? All too often you seem to ignore the nature of serial drama, which is to save some developments, revelations, and resolutions for future episodes. And that's true even in a season of largely stand-alone episodes. AtS is still episodic. Clairel

2004-02-06 12:54:03-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (igs622001@yahoo.com)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<Xns9486E84D5DF25houseofusher@216.40.28.74>... > igs622001@yahoo.com (Ian) wrote in > news:5aa58763.0402051030.c0293fb@posting.google.com: > > Also, just out of curiousity, did the short exchange involving Harmony > > as being "technically evil" change your views, as we were discussing a > > while ago? > > Oh, not at all. IMHO, the "yay for torture" sequence was pure David > Fury, specifically designed to reinforce the idea that Harmony is > irredeemably evil, just like I said. > > Why, was there something mitigating there that I missed? I took it as cute ME acknowledgement of the fact that she reaslly isn't evil any more at all. She's just "technically" evil. As far as being in favour of torture, it was Codelia's idea in the first place and it was Angel that gave Harmony the go ahead. To the extent that there was any evil in the idea, Harmony's no more culpable than those two. Further, Harmony didn't kill Eve. Angel gave here carte blanche and she didn't do it. Doesn't sound very evil to me. While there's nothing definitive, I think Harmony's actions in YW are pretty consistent with my view that Harmony has achieved more in the way of redemption than chip Spike ever did.

2004-02-06 12:58:39-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (igs622001@yahoo.com)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<Xns9486E84D5DF25houseofusher@216.40.28.74>... > igs622001@yahoo.com (Ian) wrote in > news:5aa58763.0402051030.c0293fb@posting.google.com: > > Yes, the Lyndsey thing was a disappointment and, yes, it was poorly > > done. However, having suffered through the last couple of seasons of > > BtVS, how could you reasonably expect better? > > Well, I'm in the minority that thinks ANGEL really pulled itself back > together at the end of season 4 for a fantastic final arc, so I know > they're still capable of greatness under difficult conditions, despite > the evidence of BUFFY's season 7. I watched very little of AtS season 4, so I really can't comment. However, having just finished watching my FIREFLY DVDs, and in particular, the incredible final episode "Objects in Space", I do agree that ME is still capable of doing great things. Sadly, they seem to be incapable of doing them in two places at once. Last year, it was FIREFLY and we got BtVS season 7 as a result.

2004-02-06 16:15:19+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu>)


Randy Money <rbmoney@spamblocklibrary.syr.edu> wrote: : Shawn H wrote: :> Randy Money <rbmoney@spamblocklibrary.syr.edu> wrote: :> : Shawn H wrote: : [...] :> : But when Fred's not being "smart, resourceful...", which is most of the :> : time, they have her revert to a 14-year-old's emotional level. For a :> :> Does "cutesy" and "shy" equal 14-year-old automatically? : No, but here '14-year-old emotional level' seems to translate to : 'cutesy' and 'shy'. It probably doesn't help that Acker looks so young; : that might be because of clothing and make-up choices, of course, and I : think I see a trend in addressing these of late. One thing they have done (to continue newsgroup thoughts on lowered budgets and tacky sets this season) is upped the clothing budget, from what I can tell. Eve's wearing the latest fashions, and Fred is definitely dressing more grown-up. Well, they do all have corporate jobs now. :> sometimes outshone Dick on his show, and certainly a link was made between her :> solo show and Cordy's fantasy alternate life. : Yes. Until that ep it never occurred to me how much she looked like MTM : if MTM had been playing roles in which the woman was confident and : foregrounded her sexuality a little more. Well, for the time, she was. Single woman, happily dating, alone in the big city. She certainly wasn't Anne Marie with her dad snooping around and one steady Donald keeping his eye on her too. :> Even then, in the ep when she and Willow were warring over freeing Angel's :> soul, she touched on something with the possessive demon's character. : That may have been CC's best ep of last season because she and Hannagan : played off each other like they had never stopped working directly together. I really enjoyed that ep. It and Magic Bullet (and Awakening, I guess) were the high points of the Jasmine arc for me. :> She has done it, as in The Magic Bullet, or Supersymmetry. Can she do it while :> others are on screen is the question. : Argh. There's my lack of memory again. I know I've seen both, but can't : recall the stories. She connives to take out her traitorous professor in the latter (but Gunn infantilizes her again, assuming the killing blow for himself), and wounds Jasmine, frees Angel, and single-handedly turns the tide in the former. : Oddly, maybe, I found Acker very appealing in the Boreanaz directed ep. : in Angel's hallucination; moreso than in her moments outside his : hallucination. When she was in her lab coat, she looked adult and : fetching. I'd like to see more of that Fred. Agreed; she was confident in that scene, because he was the patient/victim/supplicant/sick one. A role reversal. : ending was one of the more convincing dramatic moments from CC in the : course of the series. I've always found her emotional scenes a bit : over-played, especially when she's trying hard to appear earnest. This one was subtle, though some of her sincerity has worked for me in the past too. Still, Cordy's more about the flip invective than all the moral support. Shawn

2004-02-06 16:16:19+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu>)


Ice Queen <nardo218@yahoo.com> wrote: :> Even though she's saved HIM on more than one occasion, and he listens to her :> expertise, would he take her criticisms of himself seriously? : Apt description. The main diffference between Cordy and Fred is that : Cordy grew out of her adolescent self-doubt, and Fred hasn't or won't. : I say "won't", because Cordy always knew she was the coolest thing : ever, Queen C, even when she let Harmony or movie producers shake her : confidence. As long as we've known her, Fred, despite her astronomical : intellect and her amazing survival of Pylea, Fred still thinks that : her accomplishments aren't anything special. Southern girl? Another "tiny Texan?" Shawn

2004-02-06 16:22:25+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu>)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote: : Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in : news:bvu6ii$jn7$1@news.fas.harvard.edu: :>: SPOILERS for this week's episode are below... :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :>: . :> It is an ongoing series, Usher. Cordy's insight and task-mastering :> made him realize he's not lost yet, and the battles are ongoing. : Oh, sure. I just don't understand how he made even *that* realization. : How do he make the leap from "I can kick the ass of this weird little : lawyer" to "I can hold my own against the most evilest corporation in the : multiverse"? The one doesn't seem to follow from t'other. How does he ever know he can defeat evil? The odds are always stacked against him. But he only loses when he despairs or fears, or flees. He had no successful coping mechanism at this point in the season, partly due to the undermining mind games of Eve and Lindsey. He was ready to chuck it all in, losing sight of why he'd accepted the offer in the first place. Cordy basically gave him a jolt of confidence again, a parting gift. It may well run out all over again. :>: wonder, is there a way to retain these kind of characterizations, now :>: that Cordy is dead and gone? :> :> Who else does he respect as much? : Well, that depends. Have they kicked Elisabeth Rohm off LAW & ORDER yet? Or : have they finally put Eliza Dushku's TRU CALLING out of its misery? : No? Then I guess the answer is "no one." Damn. Could they maybe revive Lilah or something? Borrow Willow for an extended period? Or are Angel and Spike going to kiss and make up? Shawn

2004-02-06 16:41:57-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (igs622001@yahoo.com)


himiko@animail.net (himiko) wrote in message news:<c7902983.0402051139.264e9c1d@posting.google.com>... > Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<Xns9486E482C69Dhouseofusher@216.40.28.71>... > > And, yes, the distance and isolation makes sense in the new corporate > > setting. This is certainly the kind of thing that can happen when you > > become a part of the corporate machine. But, after seeing the > > alternative illustrated so profoundly by Angel and Cordelia, I'm > > starting to wonder, like Angel at the beginning of the episode, if the > > new digs are truly worth the cost. > > Which is very much where the writers want us to be. It's deliberate. I can't speak for LU, but I don't think that's what he is referring to here. He's not speaking of the cost to Angel and AI but, rather, the cost to the series as entertainment. I doubt that the writers deliberately want to make people stop watching the series.

2004-02-06 20:03:20-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Mark Jones <sinanju@pacifier.com>)


Alicat <me@privacy.net>, on or about Fri, 06 Feb 2004 16:53:10 -0800, did you or did you not state: >On Fri, 06 Feb 2004 09:41:08 -0800, Mark Jones <sinanju@pacifier.com> >wrote: >>Doesn't it bother anyone that "total control, lock, stock and barrel" is >>now being played as "but the Senior Partners are still calling the shots"? >> ><snipped the rest of a most excellent analysis to save bandwidth> Thank you! >Yes, but then my question is *why* is Angel almost subservient to W&H? >Is it because he thinks they would reverse the Connor thing or somehow >"punish" him if he started testing his limits as CEO? And why is >Wesley going along with this? Is an overly benign assessment of W&H >part of the mindwipe? I suppose it could be. But my cynical assessment is laziness on the part of the ME writers. They're not interested in those questions--they've got their eyes on something else, so these details are getting swept under the rug. >Of course I still want to know who or what Eve is before anything >else...we have this character floating around to do what exactly? Can >Gunn communicate directly with the Senior Partners or not, and if so, >why would Angel spend more than two seconds snapping Eve's neck? Oh, I >have lots of questions. Me too. But I suspect a lot of them will never be answered. -- [AGB] Bullet Sponge "So what happened then, grandpa?" "Well, I got KILLED, of course!"

2004-02-06 20:32:43+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu>)


Clairel <reldevik@usa.net> wrote: : It is sometimes said that Fred was a damsel in distress whom Angel : saved in Pylea, but I actually see her as the resourceful young woman Said by Fred herself, actually. : who survived five years in that hostile environment and was the only : one who knew how the right way to handle Angel in his pure demon form. Because he was a wild animal, and she was a crazy hermit. Bless the beasts and the children. : When Angel, after seeing what he looked like, collapsed weeping on : the floor of Fred's cave and Fred comforted him, he was the weak one : and she was the strong, salvific one. That's how I see Fred. What I'd like to see is that side more often coming to the fore. Shawn

2004-02-07 23:41:55+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (John Campbell Rees <jwcr@gardd-lelog.org.uk>)


During the course of this discussion, josie_h@yahoo.com (j), in message <6bcf75a6.0402051603.61d094d5@posting.google.com> wrote: > SPOILER SPACE > > > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > . > > > After all, the Angel/Cordy interactions are grounded in their mutual > > > trust, respect, and openness, and there doesn't seem to be another > > > character on the show with whom Angel can share himself so completely. > > > Not Spike, whom he hates; not the former AI gang, from whom he's hiding > > > so much. > > >SNIP< > > > I think you're wrong about him hating Spike, though. Spike annoys him > > personally, but Spike is also a reminder of his past. > > Also add that hatred often derives from guilt - personal and shared, I am sure that it was Spike who procured the Gypsy Girl for Angelus. If he had not given his friend the girl to drink from, then the Gypsy clan would never have cursed him in the first place. We know from the BtVS episode "Surprise" that soulless Spike was not like other vampires, he had human emotions and acted in a very unvampiric way towards Druscilla. So does Spike see Angel's curse as being all his fault, and that is why he reacts so badly to Angel. -- "Like shooting flies with a laser cannon, the aims a bit tricky, but it certainly deals with the flies." - Lord Miles Vorkosigan.

2004-02-08 00:48:12+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (aej17DELETEME@comcast.net)


John Campbell Rees <jwcr@gardd-lelog.org.uk> wrote: > > I am sure that it was Spike who procured the Gypsy Girl for Angelus. If > he had not given his friend the girl to drink from, then the Gypsy clan > would never have cursed him in the first place. We know from the BtVS > episode "Surprise" that soulless Spike was not like other vampires, he > had human emotions and acted in a very unvampiric way towards > Druscilla. So does Spike see Angel's curse as being all his fault, and > that is why he reacts so badly to Angel. No. It was Darla who gave the Romani girl to Angel ("Five by Five"). The girl was a birthday present from Darla to Angelus, in Romania 1898. And we don't know that Spike was not like any other vampires. He was exactly like other vampires, except he was generally better at it (Although, in all honesty, both of the Slayers he killed suffered from extremely ill-timed bad luck). Spike, by his own admission on numerous occassions, was horrible and sadistic. The one contribution to Angel's curse which Spike made was that he killed the family whose lives Darla was bargaining with in order to get the Romani man to lift the curse ("Darla"). Now, granted, who knows whether or not the man would have relented, or whether the curse could have been lifted at all. But Spike's premature slaughter of the family, as Darla was in the middle of bargaining, made both those points moot. -- AE Jabbour "If nothing we do matters, then all that matters is what we do." - Angel, "Epiphany"

2004-02-08 00:51:59+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (tsd@rygar.gpcc.itd.umich.edu)


In article <6e323c7d4c.jwcr@dendarii.btinternet.com>, John Campbell Rees <jwcr@gardd-lelog.org.uk> wrote: :During the course of this discussion, josie_h@yahoo.com (j), : in message <6bcf75a6.0402051603.61d094d5@posting.google.com> wrote: : :> SPOILER SPACE :> > :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . :> . : :> > > After all, the Angel/Cordy interactions are grounded in their mutual :> > > trust, respect, and openness, and there doesn't seem to be another :> > > character on the show with whom Angel can share himself so completely. :> > > Not Spike, whom he hates; not the former AI gang, from whom he's hiding :> > > so much. :> :> >SNIP< :> :> > I think you're wrong about him hating Spike, though. Spike annoys him :> > personally, but Spike is also a reminder of his past. :> :> Also add that hatred often derives from guilt - personal and shared, : :I am sure that it was Spike who procured the Gypsy Girl for Angelus. No. It was Darla who provided the Gypsy Girl to Angelus. Why would Spike do so? He's not exactly the type to share - especially to Angelus. --

2004-02-09 12:00:33-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (reldevik@usa.net)


aej17DELETEME@comcast.net (A.E. Jabbour) wrote in message news:<c0410b$122af0$1@ID-137314.news.uni-berlin.de>... > John Campbell Rees <jwcr@gardd-lelog.org.uk> wrote: > > > > I am sure that it was Spike who procured the Gypsy Girl for Angelus. If > > he had not given his friend the girl to drink from, then the Gypsy clan > > would never have cursed him in the first place. We know from the BtVS > > episode "Surprise" that soulless Spike was not like other vampires, he > > had human emotions and acted in a very unvampiric way towards > > Druscilla. So does Spike see Angel's curse as being all his fault, and > > that is why he reacts so badly to Angel. > > No. It was Darla who gave the Romani girl to Angel ("Five by Five"). > The girl was a birthday present from Darla to Angelus, in Romania 1898. > > And we don't know that Spike was not like any other vampires. He was > exactly like other vampires, except he was generally better at it > (Although, in all honesty, both of the Slayers he killed suffered from > extremely ill-timed bad luck). Spike, by his own admission on > numerous occassions, was horrible and sadistic. > > The one contribution to Angel's curse which Spike made was that > he killed the family whose lives Darla was bargaining with in > order to get the Romani man to lift the curse ("Darla"). > > Now, granted, who knows whether or not the man would have relented, > or whether the curse could have been lifted at all. But Spike's > premature slaughter of the family, as Darla was in the middle of > bargaining, made both those points moot. --I see you are actually filling a useful function as Newsgroup Historian. Thanks for stating the facts, so that I didn't have to bother. Where on earth do people get ideas such as "I am sure that it was Spike who procured the Gypsy Girl for Angelus," though? Not only was it *shown* that Darla procured her for Angelus, but also there's no *reason* to picture Spike as the one who did. Statements like that are just bizarre. Clairel

2004-02-09 14:40:56-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (igs622001@yahoo.com)


reldevik@usa.net (Clairel) wrote in message news:<1faed770.0402091200.128bb4a8@posting.google.com>... > --I see you are actually filling a useful function as Newsgroup > Historian. Thanks for stating the facts, so that I didn't have to > bother. I normally make a point of not responding to your posts, but this one is special. Clairel, you are truly a wonder. Every time I think you have been as arrogant and condescending as one human being could possibly be, you go and top yourself.

2004-02-09 15:33:07-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (jillun@hotmail.com)


Don't forget, Clairel, there are still people who insist that Angel really was the direct sire of Spike, and that Dru is the younger vampire.

2004-02-09 19:26:05-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (reldevik@usa.net)


igs622001@yahoo.com (Ian) wrote in message news:<5aa58763.0402091440.60784ffa@posting.google.com>... > reldevik@usa.net (Clairel) wrote in message news:<1faed770.0402091200.128bb4a8@posting.google.com>... > > > --I see you are actually filling a useful function as Newsgroup > > Historian. Thanks for stating the facts, so that I didn't have to > > bother. > > > I normally make a point of not responding to your posts, but this one > is special. > > > Clairel, you are truly a wonder. > > Every time I think you have been as arrogant and condescending as one > human being could possibly be, you go and top yourself. *sigh* I'm not even sure why I'm bothering to respond to this, since it's none of Ian's business anyway. But, as A.E. knows perfectly well, the two of us have recently been dialoguing on another thread about whether there's any point in continuing to participate in a Newsgroup when one has ceased watching the show in question. A.E. decided to stop watching AtS. But, he says, he still likes participating in the Newsgroup because he takes an interest in the past history of AtS--the seasons of the show that he actually liked. Clearly, without watching new episodes of AtS the only thing A.E. can really do is discuss the past of AtS. That doesn't always come up on every thread. But on this thread, it was particularly useful to have someone around with all the facts at his fingertips. Therefore I was congratulating A.E., with utmost sincerity, on having found a way to participate usefully on a Newsgroup devoted to a show he is no longer watching. I was also thanking him for the service he rendered. And I meant that, too, with all sincerity. Ian should probably stop jumping to conclusions about what lies behind comments that I address to other people. Not that I'm going to make a habit of defending myself against his impertinent accusations. I've spent more than enough time on this already, and I have better things to do. Clairel

2004-02-10 01:01:07-06:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com>)


igs622001@yahoo.com (Ian) wrote in news:5aa58763.0402061254.aabdf05@posting.google.com: >> > Also, just out of curiousity, did the short exchange involving >> > Harmony as being "technically evil" change your views, as we were >> > discussing a while ago? >> >> Oh, not at all. IMHO, the "yay for torture" sequence was pure David >> Fury, specifically designed to reinforce the idea that Harmony is >> irredeemably evil, just like I said. >> >> Why, was there something mitigating there that I missed? > > I took it as cute ME acknowledgement of the fact that she reaslly > isn't evil any more at all. She's just "technically" evil. Oh, that. I took the "technically" as simply Harmony's way of downplaying her evilness, since she knows Our Heroes are not fans. In any event, Harmony's description of what it means to be technically evil are exactly the same as what it means to be *actually* evil -- namely, that she has no qualms about committing violence and torture and whatnot. > As far as being in favour of torture, it was Codelia's idea in the > first place and it was Angel that gave Harmony the go ahead. To the > extent that there was any evil in the idea, Harmony's no more culpable > than those two. Me, I see a pretty huge difference between being willing to torture the bad guy because lives depend on it, and being *eager* to torture her because you think it sounds like fun -- to the point that you're disappointed when the rough stuff works because that means you have to stop. > Further, Harmony didn't kill Eve. Angel gave here carte blanche and > she didn't do it. Doesn't sound very evil to me. Angel didn't give Harmony "carte blanche." He gave her permission to kill Eve under a very specific set of circumstances that Eve did not fulfill. And one assumes Angel has the ability to verify whether the circumstances were met, since the W&H offices are heavily surveiled. Surely you didn't miss the part where Harmony complained because she *wanted* to kill Eve, but couldn't because Eve didn't try to run. Not really seein' the moral principle at work there... -- Lord Usher "I'm here to kill you, not to judge you."

2004-02-10 01:36:07-06:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com>)


Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in news:c00f01$b2d$3@news.fas.harvard.edu: > Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote: >: Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in >: news:bvu6ii$jn7$1@news.fas.harvard.edu: > >:>: SPOILERS for this week's episode are below... >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:>: . >:> It is an ongoing series, Usher. Cordy's insight and task-mastering >:> made him realize he's not lost yet, and the battles are ongoing. > >: Oh, sure. I just don't understand how he made even *that* >: realization. > >: How do he make the leap from "I can kick the ass of this weird little >: lawyer" to "I can hold my own against the most evilest corporation in >: the multiverse"? The one doesn't seem to follow from t'other. > > How does he ever know he can defeat evil? The odds are always stacked > against him. But he only loses when he despairs or fears, or flees. But this season hasn't shown us an Angel who's despaired of defeating each individual doer of evil. When he's actually had to go out and kick the ass of a demon or a mage or whatever, he's been as confident and successful as ever. His problem this year has been that he feels like the good he's done in kicking the ass of evil is outweighed by the evil being done by the corporation he heads. More confidence on the ass-kicking side of things shouldn't tip the scale. >:>: wonder, is there a way to retain these kind of characterizations, >:>: now that Cordy is dead and gone? >:> >:> Who else does he respect as much? > >: Well, that depends. Have they kicked Elisabeth Rohm off LAW & ORDER >: yet? Or have they finally put Eliza Dushku's TRU CALLING out of its >: misery? > >: No? Then I guess the answer is "no one." > > Damn. Could they maybe revive Lilah or something? Borrow Willow for an > extended period? Wiwwow? As a woman who could commands Angel's respect? Surely you jest. -- Lord Usher "I'm here to kill you, not to judge you."

2004-02-10 03:18:03-06:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com>)


reldevik@usa.net (Clairel) wrote in news:1faed770.0402061223.10f33d2a@posting.google.com: > Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message > news:<Xns9487E398A920houseofusher@216.40.28.74>... >> reldevik@usa.net (Clairel) wrote in >> news:1faed770.0402050942.746dd222@posting.google.com: >> >> Spoilers for this week's episode... >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> . >> > and Eve as a villainess is in a whole different category from the >> > heroines, >> >> But "villain" doesn't automatically mean "little girl." > > --No, I'm just saying I don't necessarily want the same things from > heroines as I want from villainesses, and I find it strange to discuss > the two together. (shrug) I'd just like to see more strong women on the show. I don't much care if they're the villains or the heroes, as the series has demonstrated an ability to make either group pretty darn compelling. > Darla was a villain, but she was also a thoughtful, mature, assertive > woman. > > --And I suppose you might say the same of Lilah. Sure. I may not have been Lilah's biggest fan, but she was certainly a woman as opposed to a girl. > Many viewers wanted a Lilah clone when Eve showed up to take Lilah's > place. But instead ME went for a character who contrasted with Lilah. > Hence the disappointment. But what if ME was never trying for a > second Lilah? Never said that they were. Wishing that Eve were more like Lilah in this one respect does not imply that I wish she were like Lilah in every respect. Isn't "thoughtful, mature, assertive woman" a broad enough category that it can contain multiple characters that aren't clones of each other? Indeed, it's a category that contains characters as different as Lilah and Darla -- as well as Cordy, Kate, and Jasmine, among others. There's plenty of room for more without retreading the same ground. >> > but I think you're being very unfair to Fred here. Have you >> > forgotten Supersymmetry? Have you forgotten The Magic Bullet? >> > Fred has brains, guts, and determination. >> >> Sure, Fred is book-smart and battle-ready, but that doesn't mean >> she's a "real woman," at least not the way I'm using the term. For >> that, she'd need: >> >> 1. A more nuanced emotional intelligence. When was the last time Fred >> showed any real insight into what another character was feeling? >> She's always the person who offers *sympathy* to those who are >> suffering, but never any real *understanding* of what they're going >> through. > > --You would have to substantiate that assertion. Right now I see no > basis for it at all. Well, it's difficult to specifically justify an argument for absence. What am I gonna do, cite all the times that Fred *didn't* act with understanding? All I can really do is wait for you to suggest examples that supposedly disprove my thesis, and explain why I don't think they apply. To wit: > I see Fred having both sympathy and understanding: for example, when > she understood where Wes was coming from during the period of his > estrangement from the team, and she reached out to him on several > occasions. M'eh. I think I know the scene you're talking about, and it didn't really impress me with the subtlety of its emotional understanding. "You should've trusted us instead of going to Holtz behind our backs" is not exactly piercing insight. Not like, say, Cordy's reassurances to Angel at the end of "Somnambulist" or "Heartthrob." Or Angel's attempts to share his thoughts about humanity and redemption in episodes like "Sanctuary" or "Untouched." Or Wes's scathing self-analysis in the form of Lilah's "ghost" in "Salvage." Or Darla's piercing insight into the dark side of Angel's character in "Dear Boy." And so on... >> 2. A more mature sexuality. More often than not, Fred's been >> portrayed as a passive romantic *object*, gaping at all the boys who, >> gosh-o- golly, want to win her heart, and not as someone with strong >> desires and preferences of her own. > > --Totally unfair and inaccurate. She has always been the one to make > the move, to decide on the guy *she* wanted. Look back at "Waiting in > the Wings," and the way she and Gunn ended up together. It was > because *she* decided what she wanted, and she went for it. I think it's more accurate to say that she chose *from among those men who were actively pursuing her*. That's still a passive position -- to wait for men to throw themselves at you before saying, "Okay, you're the one." She's still presented as the prize to be won by the man who can make the best impression. >> As I said at the end of my original post, I do understand this, and >> for a while it seemed like a good enough explanation. But this >> episode showed me how much I miss this aspect of the series, and made >> me wonder if the loss is worth the potentially interesting >> complications it creates. > > --The series would stagnate if everything always remained the same. > And so would Angel's character. Not arguing with that. That a series must change does not necessarily mean it must change *in this particular way*. That's exactly what I'm arguing, in fact -- that this is such an essential aspect of the series that it should remain constant regardless of what else changes. > At a certain point, you have to let go of a toddler's hand and let > the kid try to take a few steps on his own. So it's infantile to have a friend and confidante? It's childish to gain strength from someone whom you understand and who understands you? Seems like these are things that can be immensely valuable to anyone, of any age. > Angel cannot continue to be somebody who is dependent on Cordy's > admonitions to keep him doing the right thing, incapable of doing > anything right without her. Never said that he should. I simply said that her position -- as the equal, the insightful truth-teller, should not be abandoned. Notice the list in my original post -- I outline the qualities I thought were compelling about the characters as presented in "You're Welcome" (i.e., they're smart, communicative, attentive to their histories, active, and strong). These are the qualities that a well-constructed confidant(e) character brings to the series, qualities that tend to fade away when such a character ceases to exist. IMHO, these qualities should be non-negotiable. A show is significantly worse without them, period. Thus, a show is significantly worse without the confidant(e) character. Is your argument that these qualities are *not* hugely important? Or that the series can imbue the characters with them in other ways? >> But there's another aspect to the issue that I've just realized -- >> Angel's equal and confidant(e) doesn't need to be a trusted friend >> like Cordy. Think back to early season 2, when the character who knew >> Angel better than he knew himself, with whom he could share things he >> didn't dare share with anyone else, was *Darla*. Not a friend at all, >> but an enemy, who was nevertheless the noirish leading lady of that >> part of the series. >> >> Imagine if they'd done the same thing with, say, the character of >> Eve. Made her not an annoying little phony parroting the demands of >> the Senior Partners or Lindsey, but a smart and perceptive woman with >> her own agenda, who could really get under Angel's skin. Someone whom >> Angel couldn't dismiss with an easy, "Shut up, you evil puppet" -- >> someone he found himself listening to and confiding in despite >> himself. >> >> That way, you maintain Angel's estrangement from his friends without >> sacrificing this important window into Our Hero's character. > > --The ironic thing is that you don't seem to realize what you've just > described is what's evolving between Spike and Angel. Perhaps. But, if so, it's still in a very early stage of its evolution. Angel simply does not trust or respect Spike enough to accept that what the young whippersnapper says is in fact true, no matter how insightful it might be. Until he does, until Spike evolves into that confidant role, there will still be a hole in the series, and no one to fill it. >> That's all well and good, but unspoken motivations can't do anything >> to improve the complexity of an episode in which they are not >> expressed. If a character arc falls in the forest and there's no one >> there to hear it, does it still make a sound? > > --Come on, LU. For someone who follows spoilers, you seem oddly > impatient to have everything resolved in a single episode. Why can't > you wait for a return engagement for more of Lindsey's motivations to > be revealed? Because what happens in future episodes has no bearing on the impact of *this particular episode* as a thing unto itself. If a future episode contrives a more plausible explanation for Lindsey's behavior, I will gladly heap praise upon that episode. But it won't raise my appreciation for the episode that offered an altogether crappy and unconvincing explanation. > All too often you seem to ignore the nature of serial drama, which is > to save some developments, revelations, and resolutions for future > episodes. That's because, IMHO, that's not the nature of serial drama. It's only the nature of *bad* serial drama. "Saving" a revelation through padding or cheap red herrings is not the way serials should work. Drama is about *building* a story, revelation upon revelation, not taking one revelation and stretching it out as long as possible. If the story doesn't sustain naturally over the number of episodes for which you have it slotted, you need more story, not more padding. I can't help but compare the serial aspects of "You're Welcome" to the serial elements of early season 2 -- which is when I think the writers really had the whole serial storytelling thing nailed: "Dear Boy" didn't introduce a false explanation for Darla's behavior that was later invalidated by "Darla." It told an altogether convincing and compelling story about why Darla was messing with Angel (Darla wanted to convince Angel and herself that her dear boy was still inside him waiting to get out) -- and then let that revelation carry the story forward (because Angel expended such effort to convince Darla that he's not her dear boy anymore, she began to wonder if *she* might not be the same person she once was, either). *That's* how "You're Welcome" should've handled the serial elements. Not "here's a fake explanation; stay tuned for the real one!" but "here's the real explanation; but stay tuned to find out where this explanation leads." -- Lord Usher "I'm here to kill you, not to judge you."

2004-02-10 04:13:44+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (aej17DELETEME@comcast.net)


Clairel <reldevik@usa.net> wrote: > aej17DELETEME@comcast.net (A.E. Jabbour) wrote in message news:<c0410b$122af0$1@ID-137314.news.uni-berlin.de>... >> >> Now, granted, who knows whether or not the man would have relented, >> or whether the curse could have been lifted at all. But Spike's >> premature slaughter of the family, as Darla was in the middle of >> bargaining, made both those points moot. > > --I see you are actually filling a useful function as Newsgroup > Historian. Thanks for stating the facts, so that I didn't have to > bother. Well, occasionally I do something else other than just complain. > Where on earth do people get ideas such as "I am sure that it was > Spike who procured the Gypsy Girl for Angelus," though? Not only was > it *shown* that Darla procured her for Angelus, but also there's no > *reason* to picture Spike as the one who did. Statements like that > are just bizarre. > > Clairel Sometimes peoples' memories are not as good. Also, lots of people are not as devoted fans as some of us maniacs. I would be the first to admit, for example, that I am not the one to ask about BtVS S7 or AtS S4. Heck, I barely remember much of AtS S3. OTOH, I have seen BtVS S1-S3 episodes so many times, that they are ingrained. The same goes for AtS S1-S2. -- AE Jabbour "If nothing we do matters, then all that matters is what we do." - Angel, "Epiphany"

2004-02-10 05:43:47+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (James Craine <JamesCraine@Hotmail.com>)


Lord Usher wrote: > > Well, the questions themselves shouldn't be a dismissed as a trick, > because they're legitimate questions, no matter what crazed Angel- > infatuated lawyer posed them. Considering his new position, considering > everything he did last season to Jasmine and Connor, Angel *should* be > asking himself, "Am I still a hero? Is a hero even what the world needs > me to be?" To handwave away these serious questions by discrediting the > questioner is the worst kind of rhetorical bait-and-switch. > > And while we're on the subject of Angel's triumph over his existential > uncertainty -- what the hell was up with his big revelation at the end > of the fight with Lindsey? To wit: > > "I'm Angel. I beat the bad guys." Trivial note: 3 days later HBO aired 'Daredevil'. With almost exactly the same theme. DD says 'I'm one of the good guys'. (End Elektra, like Cordelia, dies. But of her own mistake.)

2004-02-10 07:29:55+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (aej17DELETEME@comcast.net)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote: > > Angel didn't give Harmony "carte blanche." He gave her permission to > kill Eve under a very specific set of circumstances that Eve did not > fulfill. And one assumes Angel has the ability to verify whether the > circumstances were met, since the W&H offices are heavily surveiled. > > Surely you didn't miss the part where Harmony complained because she > *wanted* to kill Eve, but couldn't because Eve didn't try to run. Not > really seein' the moral principle at work there... No, but people don't even jump at the word "torture" anymore. We've seen so many examples on tv (_Alias_, for example) that most people don't even react to it anymore. If the scene had been Spike punching Eve, bloodying her, then it would have played much differently. The idea, which given the situation, was that Harmony was supposed to beat on Eve until she gave up the information, was somewhat painful to watch. But it was played comically. And there was no blood. So, it's ok. -- AE Jabbour "If nothing we do matters, then all that matters is what we do." - Angel, "Epiphany"

2004-02-10 08:32:38-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (igs622001@yahoo.com)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<Xns948BA0798A42houseofusher@216.40.28.70>... > igs622001@yahoo.com (Ian) wrote in > news:5aa58763.0402061254.aabdf05@posting.google.com: > > >> > Also, just out of curiousity, did the short exchange involving > >> > Harmony as being "technically evil" change your views, as we were > >> > discussing a while ago? > >> > >> Oh, not at all. IMHO, the "yay for torture" sequence was pure David > >> Fury, specifically designed to reinforce the idea that Harmony is > >> irredeemably evil, just like I said. > >> > >> Why, was there something mitigating there that I missed? > > > > I took it as cute ME acknowledgement of the fact that she reaslly > > isn't evil any more at all. She's just "technically" evil. > > Oh, that. I took the "technically" as simply Harmony's way of > downplaying her evilness, since she knows Our Heroes are not fans. It may be that. However, there seem to be many instances this season where the writers are talking directly to the fans. I think this was one of them. > In any event, Harmony's description of what it means to be technically > evil are exactly the same as what it means to be *actually* evil -- > namely, that she has no qualms about committing violence and torture and > whatnot. Neither did Cordelia. > > As far as being in favour of torture, it was Codelia's idea in the > > first place and it was Angel that gave Harmony the go ahead. To the > > extent that there was any evil in the idea, Harmony's no more culpable > > than those two. > > Me, I see a pretty huge difference between being willing to torture the > bad guy because lives depend on it, and being *eager* to torture her > because you think it sounds like fun -- to the point that you're > disappointed when the rough stuff works because that means you have to > stop. Oh, I agree that Harmony's motivations were different from that of the others. In a way, it's convenience for Angel and Co, I suppose... you want something unpleasant done, give it to Harmony.. she's evil. It's like the lack of conscience is almost a built in special feature. But, again, I don't see a whole lot of difference between ordering the "torture" and actually carrying it out, regardless of the motivation. Sure, maybe the ends justify the means, but someone still has to give the order and others have to look away. Of course, in TV land, we get off easy, because the "torture" wasn't much at all and was played for laughs. I wonder how it would have played if there actually had been some torture. > > Further, Harmony didn't kill Eve. Angel gave here carte blanche and > > she didn't do it. Doesn't sound very evil to me. > > Angel didn't give Harmony "carte blanche." He gave her permission to > kill Eve under a very specific set of circumstances that Eve did not > fulfill. And one assumes Angel has the ability to verify whether the > circumstances were met, since the W&H offices are heavily surveiled. I believe he said "kill her if she moves". Without doubt, that condition was fulfilled. And, by the tenor of his instruction and by his willingness to order torture, I think Harmony might reasonably have concluded that she was being given a free hand in the matter. > Surely you didn't miss the part where Harmony complained because she > *wanted* to kill Eve, but couldn't because Eve didn't try to run. Not > really seein' the moral principle at work there... Again, Harmony chosing not to kill when it was open to her to do so. Really, apart from the laugh track quips about being "technically evil", I don't see a lot of difference between Harmony and any of the others.

2004-02-10 12:57:52-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (reldevik@usa.net)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote in message news:<Xns948BFEEF24AEhouseofusher@216.40.28.70>... > Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in > news:c00f01$b2d$3@news.fas.harvard.edu: > > > Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote: > >: Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in > >: news:bvu6ii$jn7$1@news.fas.harvard.edu: > > >:>: SPOILERS for this week's episode are below... > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:>: . > >:> It is an ongoing series, Usher. Cordy's insight and task-mastering > >:> made him realize he's not lost yet, and the battles are ongoing. > > >: Oh, sure. I just don't understand how he made even *that* > >: realization. > > >: How do he make the leap from "I can kick the ass of this weird little > >: lawyer" to "I can hold my own against the most evilest corporation in > >: the multiverse"? The one doesn't seem to follow from t'other. > > > > How does he ever know he can defeat evil? The odds are always stacked > > against him. But he only loses when he despairs or fears, or flees. > > But this season hasn't shown us an Angel who's despaired of defeating > each individual doer of evil. When he's actually had to go out and kick > the ass of a demon or a mage or whatever, he's been as confident and > successful as ever. > > His problem this year has been that he feels like the good he's done in > kicking the ass of evil is outweighed by the evil being done by the > corporation he heads. More confidence on the ass-kicking side of things > shouldn't tip the scale. > > >:>: wonder, is there a way to retain these kind of characterizations, > >:>: now that Cordy is dead and gone? > >:> > >:> Who else does he respect as much? > > >: Well, that depends. Have they kicked Elisabeth Rohm off LAW & ORDER > >: yet? Or have they finally put Eliza Dushku's TRU CALLING out of its > >: misery? > > >: No? Then I guess the answer is "no one." > > > > Damn. Could they maybe revive Lilah or something? Borrow Willow for an > > extended period? > > Wiwwow? As a woman who could commands Angel's respect? > > Surely you jest. --Willow was competent enough last year in "Orpheus" when she restored Angel's soul. Furthermore, Angel knows that it was Willow's power which changed the world by creating multiple Slayers for the first time in history. What reason would Angel have to disrespect Willow? And please note that I'm not asking what reasons *you* have for disrespecting Willow--you've seen lots of low points in Willow's life during the last few seasons of BtVS that Angel hasn't seen, and knows nothing about. I'm asking what there is that Angel *knows* about that would make him disrespect Willow. As far as Angel knows, Willow is the same gutsy, resourceful person who had the wit and daring to steal crucial pages from the Mayor's Books of Ascension while imprisoned by the Mayor, and who can dust vampires by levitating pencils. Oh, yes, and Angel knows Willow is the powerful witch who resurrected Buffy--he knows that simple fact, without knowing the more regrettable ramifications and repercussions of the deed. Is a little baby-talk every now and then going to really make a stronger impression on Angel than all the extraordinary deeds he knows Willow has done? Clairel

2004-02-10 21:06:24+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu>)


Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote: : Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in : news:c00f01$b2d$3@news.fas.harvard.edu: :> Lord Usher <lord_usher@hotmail.com> wrote: :>: Shawn H <shill#@fas.harvard.edu> wrote in :>: news:bvu6ii$jn7$1@news.fas.harvard.edu: :> :>:>: SPOILERS for this week's episode are below... :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :>:>: . :> How does he ever know he can defeat evil? The odds are always stacked :> against him. But he only loses when he despairs or fears, or flees. : But this season hasn't shown us an Angel who's despaired of defeating : each individual doer of evil. When he's actually had to go out and kick : the ass of a demon or a mage or whatever, he's been as confident and : successful as ever. What about your beloved El Cinquo Wrestler-ero? What was that but despairing not just of his boss, but of the game itself? : His problem this year has been that he feels like the good he's done in : kicking the ass of evil is outweighed by the evil being done by the : corporation he heads. More confidence on the ass-kicking side of things : shouldn't tip the scale. His problem (one of them) was the attempt by Eve-il and Tiny Texan to undermine his confidence, and set up Spike as his more worthy replacement. That hubris was what he was defeating by offering Lindsey to his masters. :> Damn. Could they maybe revive Lilah or something? Borrow Willow for an :> extended period? : Wiwwow? As a woman who could commands Angel's respect? She has done for some time. : Surely you jest. Willow has power and wisdom. What else is needed? Shawn

2004-02-11 20:31:00-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (reldevik@usa.net)


John Campbell Rees <jwcr@gardd-lelog.org.uk> wrote in message news:<884b3f7f4c.jwcr@dendarii.btinternet.com>... > During the course of this discussion, reldevik@usa.net (Clairel), > in message <1faed770.0402091200.128bb4a8@posting.google.com> wrote: > > > Where on earth do people get ideas such as "I am sure that it was > > Spike who procured the Gypsy Girl for Angelus," though? > > So, I make a mistake late at night, posting to a newsgroup about > something completely inconsequential. No neet to get so snotty about > it. --Not snotty; just amazed and incredulous. I just don't know how someone can dream up a nonexistent scene out of thin air, that's all. And I would hardly call it inconsequential, since you were basing an argument on it about Spike feeling guilty for Angel's suffering--an argument that has no basis. I imagine Darla wouldn't call it inconsequential either, since she didn't like losing her "stallion" and she'd especially be kicking herself for it when she realized that by procuring the Gypsy girl for Angelus she had brought about Angelus's ensoulment herself. If, on the other hand, Spike had been responsible for bringing this about, Darla could have taken out her anger on Spike. Actually, I don't know why she wasn't angrier with him after he ate the Gypsy family whom she wanted to use as leverage. Darla seemed oddly resigned at that point. Hmm. Clairel

2004-02-11 21:28:10+00:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (John Campbell Rees <jwcr@gardd-lelog.org.uk>)


During the course of this discussion, reldevik@usa.net (Clairel), in message <1faed770.0402091200.128bb4a8@posting.google.com> wrote: > Where on earth do people get ideas such as "I am sure that it was > Spike who procured the Gypsy Girl for Angelus," though? So, I make a mistake late at night, posting to a newsgroup about something completely inconsequential. No neet to get so snotty about it. -- "Like shooting flies with a laser cannon, the aims a bit tricky, but it certainly deals with the flies." - Lord Miles Vorkosigan.

2004-02-12 16:42:52-08:00 - Re: Lord Usher's Thoughts -- "You're Welcome" (SPOILERS) - (reldevik@usa.net)


tsd@rygar.gpcc.itd.umich.edu (Tammy Stephanie Davis) wrote in message news:<PKfVb.1752$Nz2.36816@news.itd.umich.edu>... > In article <6e323c7d4c.jwcr@dendarii.btinternet.com>, > John Campbell Rees <jwcr@gardd-lelog.org.uk> wrote: > :During the course of this discussion, josie_h@yahoo.com (j), > : in message <6bcf75a6.0402051603.61d094d5@posting.google.com> wrote: > : > :> SPOILER SPACE > :> > > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > :> . > > :> > > After all, the Angel/Cordy interactions are grounded in their mutual > :> > > trust, respect, and openness, and there doesn't seem to be another > :> > > character on the show with whom Angel can share himself so completely. > :> > > Not Spike, whom he hates; not the former AI gang, from whom he's hiding > :> > > so much. > > :> >SNIP< > > :> > I think you're wrong about him hating Spike, though. Spike annoys him > :> > personally, but Spike is also a reminder of his past. > :> > :> Also add that hatred often derives from guilt - personal and shared, > : > :I am sure that it was Spike who procured the Gypsy Girl for Angelus. > > No. It was Darla who provided the Gypsy Girl to Angelus. > > Why would Spike do so? He's not exactly the type to share - especially > to Angelus. --That's why I thought it was such a strange mistake to make. It's not in character for Spike at all. How can someone dream up such a scene in his mind? It'd be like saying "I'm sure Xander was the matchmaker for Angel and Buffy; Xander was so eager to get those two crazy kids together!" Yeah, in the Bizarro World. Clairel