ANGELUS ARCANUM

Angel Season Four= Best. Season. Ever.

POSTED BY: LEXAN
UPDATED: Tuesday, January 30, 2007 19:48
SHORT URL:
VIEWED: 6173
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Monday, January 15, 2007 12:58 AM

LEXAN


In my opinion, the best season of Angel was season four...by a very large margin. From what I've read about people's opinion of season four around here I'm rather alone in this viewpoint. Not only was Angel season four the best season of Buffy and Angel, it was the best season of any show Joss has ever created...

I think a lot of people get turned by the season because of Cordelia's changed personality and her relationship with both Angel and Connor. This, however, is not really a valid reason for disliking the season, as Cordelia was possessed by an evil, ill-intentioned being after she got her memory back until she went into the coma. This, to an extent, redeems the fact that Connor and 'Cordelia' slept together in Apocalypse Nowish. Though I must admit I did find that a little icky but hardly icky enough to take away any of the brilliance of the season. Cordelia and Angel 'falling in love' can't really be blamed on Cordelia being possessed and is the only element of the season (or the series) I would consider to be truly weak.

Then there's Connor...A lot of people didn't like Connor because he hated and rebelled against Angel. But really.. no wander. He was raised in 'the darkest of the dark worlds' by a man who hated Angel with every fibre of his being and wanted nothing but to make Angel suffer. Probably one of the reasons I liked the season so much was the fact that I love Connor. He's one of my favourite characters in both Buffy and Angel.

One of my favourite elements of the season was Wesley’s transformation from goofy book guy to hardcore bad-ass. Wesley was just awesome in this season (as he was in the later episodes of season three, the second best season after four) and Alexis Denisof played the character very well.

I thought the story-line, plot, character conceptualisation and pacing of this season was without a doubt exceptional. The beast was an effective, if not particularly profound, big bad. When it was revealed that Cordelia was the beast’s master I was completely blown away (and also quite glad that the personality-deficient person who had been claiming to be Cordelia in fact wasn’t her) and thought it was a brilliant twist in the story. In the last few episodes, Jasmine reveals herself to be the ‘actual’ villain of the season. A lot of people, even those who liked season four, thought the Jasmine episodes were weak and probably the worst of the season. I don’t agree with this and love the Jasmine episodes just as much as the other episodes. The episode in which Fred was the only person who wasn’t under Jasmine’s spell was my especial favourite. I thought it was extremely fitting that Connor still loved Jasmine when he saw her true face, seeing as he was raised in a place where he saw things as bad-looking as she daily and was known as ‘the destroyer’ to all of them.

I was surprised when I came on this site and found that no one seemed to acknowledge the brilliance of Angel season four and all it’s fascinating layers, dimensions and conceptualisations. I certainly found it to the most gripping season of any of Joss’ shows. Way better than Angel season five...



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Monday, January 15, 2007 2:55 AM

ECGORDON

There's no place I can be since I found Serenity.


Before others show up to bash your opinion, let me be the first to agree with you, all except one point. I would argue that the half-season of Firefly beats not only anything else Joss has done, but also practically anything else anyone has ever done for tv.




wo men ren ran zai fei xing.

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Monday, January 15, 2007 6:53 AM

DEEPGIRL187


Now don't get me wrong here, I agree with you on a lot of points. Particularly about Connor and Wesley. And season four had a lot of great episodes, like "The House Always Wins", "Spin The Bottle", "Orpheus", and "Players". But I just can't say that it's the best season. I felt that towards the end of the season, the writers were grasping at straws. It's like they weren't sure what to do, so they just threw a bunch of plotlines together and hoped it would work out.

But many kudos to you for being brave enough to post your opinion. It can be hard to stand up to the hordes of season four bashers.

P.S. - I don't know if you have access to TNT, but they're airing season four right now. They show two episodes back to back from 6:00am-8:00am. Tomorrow's episodes are "Orpheus" and "Players".

*************************************************

"I suppose if we couldn't laugh at things that don't make sense, we couldn't react to a lot of life."

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Monday, January 15, 2007 6:58 AM

PURPLEBELLY


If only Charisma had brought the team in at the pregnancy planning stage - what a series we could have had... what a career Charisma could have had... Such is Life, I guess.

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007 10:55 AM

ZORPRIME01


First of all, I think I fall somewhere in the middle with regard to the usual Angel season 4 argument. I think it is in many ways one of the best seasons and in other ways one of the worst. In that respect it reminds me a little of Buffy Season 6 - it does so many things right, but also does many things that take away from the good parts.

First of all, I love the epic-scale battles with the Beast, the blotting out of the sun, and the return of one of my all-time favorite characters, Faith. Wesley is also very interesting in this season, and I don't mind Conner all that much either.

I think it's the smaller, interpersonal things they don't quite work in some instances. There was a change in the production team with Angel S4, and I think maybe the tone of the show changed somewhat. As in Buffy S6 with Willow going evil, it can be painful to watch from an emotional standpoint (which I suppose you could say is a strength) - but it makes the viewer shy away from the show a little bit instead of drawing them further in, IMO. But I think the biggest problem with S4 is that there's never any resolution to what's happening. It just keeps on going.

Quality-wise, I'd put S2 & S3 a little ahead of S4. But in saying that, I'll reiterate I don't dislike 4, I just don't think it's the strongest season overall. In terms of epic battles and action scenes, I'd say it's possibly the strongest. In terms of character, I'd say it's one of the weakest.

Overall, I think S4 is underrated and S5 is overrated. Just my opinion...



"If wishes were horses, we'd all be eatin' steak."

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007 10:56 AM

ZORPRIME01


darn multiple posts

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007 10:57 AM

ZORPRIME01


and error messages

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007 10:59 AM

WRATCHIT


Season 4.....YUCKY!

I still like the first. It not only had Glenn Quinn but Charisma was still Smokin Hot. (Not that she isn't now, but DAYUM!)

That is all.

__________________________________________________
Were there monkeys? Some terrifying space monkeys maybe got loose?
www.bikerplanet.net

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Wednesday, January 17, 2007 8:53 AM

GROOSALUGG


I won't "bash your opinion", but I will correct you by saying that of the reasons you cited why "most" people dislike S4, none apply to me.

My biggest gripe is the way the entire previous plot was pretty much thrown out the window when Jasmine came along. The Beast, Angelus, blotting out the Sun... what did all these things have to do with Jasmine's utlimate plan? En-spelled-Wesley's explanation of "They were birth pains" just doesn't cut it.

And how about a little character-consistency--is that too much to ask? Jasmine, when she was controlling Cordelia, was about as arch-villain-y as one could possibly get, and then she's born, and suddenly she's the sweetest, most loving being ever to walk the earth? Did the writers just forget everything that had happened in earlier eps? (I wouldn't be surprised--in the episode where Angelus gets free, he throws an arrow at Cordy and hits her in the thigh; within a couple of episodes, everyone's saying Angelus shot her with a crossbow. Great memories there, writing staff! )

The way the entire Jasmine arc was handled makes it feel like a last-minute contrivance (which it was), that the writers mashed up against the previous 2/3 of the season, and then tried to tie everything together with a couple of limp pieces of string. Didn't work.

Also, Charisma was great as Cordelia; she was HORRIBLE as a Big Bad. Awful. Putrid. WAY too arch and over-the-top. But still, as bad as she was--and as annoying as Lap Dog Connor was, being led around all year by his you-know-what--those things wouldn't have bothered me too much if there'd been a satisfying end to the season, something that actually paid off on all the carnage and devastation from earlier. Sadly, it was not to be...

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Wednesday, January 17, 2007 6:50 PM

LEXAN



The Beast, Angelus and blotting out the sun actually were very relevant when it came to Jasmine's ultimate plan... everything was meant to make sure all occurences were 'nudged in the right direction'. The Beast was designed to be a distraction from Jasmine's ultimate plan (and he was a very good distraction too...). Angelus was also designed as a distraction... This was used in ensuring Lorne would not read Cordy and impairing his powers of reading minds. I can name numerous other reasons as to why these characters were brought into the mix but I thought they were pretty obvious...

About the 'character inconsistency'... Jasmine was still evil... just in a different way. When the evil being that had inhabited Cordy earlier changed demeanour, it was because it had been manifested in a form more true to itself...
I don't remember the arrow thing, so I can't elaborate on what you’re saying with that...but it seems way too negligible to be making a fuss about.

I thought the Jasmine arc was handled very well (especially if it was a last minute contrivance). The writers essentially tied everything up very successfully... I was very impressed with the manner in which they dealt with Connor (remember the prophecy 'the father will kill the son', that was actually true, because Angel did kill Connor).

I agree with you that Charisma Carpenter didn't play the big bad in a particularly credible fashion. This doesn't mean there weren't some great moments with her and the character. My favourite seen in the entire season is the one in which Darla comes back to try to convince Connor not to kill an innocent. The scene is incredibly powerful, Charisma's portrayal of an unspeakable evil aside... It depicts how torn Connor was between all the conflicting and contradictory messages which he had to distinguish as lies or truth… Distinguishing these concepts and where their identities lie can be unbelievably complicated and difficult, especially in Connor’s case.

I don't recognize why you don't consider the ending to be a satisfying one. The last episode, in which Angel accepts Wolfram and Hart's offer of the corporation to him, in exchange for Connor having a customary, comparably worriless life did efficiently tie most, if not all, of the seasonal plot lines and character arcs up.

If you think that Angel season four was inconsistent and lacked continuity, I think it would be beneficial for you to look a little harder and try to unfold the narrative more … I didn’t notice any discrepancies or contradictions while watching the season. In comparison to Buffy season seven, Angel season four is ten times better, predominantly in regard to continuity and canonicity.

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Thursday, January 18, 2007 5:54 AM

DEEPGIRL187


I will agree that the Jasmine part of the story arc was done well, but not for the characters or even the story. What I felt was well done was the metaphors that were used in the storyline. It's similar to the bible in some ways. Here is Jasmine, a messiah-type character created from an impossible birth, who is destined to enlighten the world. She is betrayed by a Judas-like character (Fred), which leads to her eventual death.

On a more basic level, you deal with the issue of happiness. Is true happiness everything it's cracked up to be? Is ignorance really bliss? Is it worth it to sacrifice free will for happiness? And as a side note, if what Jasmine gave to people was true happiness, then Angel should have reverted to Angelus.

Season four still isn't my favorite season, But I think I enjoy it because more so than any season, it makes you think.

*************************************************

"I suppose if we couldn't laugh at things that don't make sense, we couldn't react to a lot of life."

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Thursday, January 18, 2007 9:09 AM

GROOSALUGG


Quote:

Originally posted by Lexan:

The Beast, Angelus and blotting out the sun actually were very relevant when it came to Jasmine's ultimate plan... everything was meant to make sure all occurences were 'nudged in the right direction'. The Beast was designed to be a distraction from Jasmine's ultimate plan (and he was a very good distraction too...). Angelus was also designed as a distraction... This was used in ensuring Lorne would not read Cordy and impairing his powers of reading minds. I can name numerous other reasons as to why these characters were brought into the mix but I thought they were pretty obvious...


Then I'll borrow a quote from Xander over on BtVS: "Big overture... little show".

Honestly, I've heard that rationalization before, and yeah, it works, fine, but to me, that's still all it is: rationalization. Someone trying to go back after-the-fact and explain how these to completely disparate storylines actually tie together: "Oh, it was all a distraction to keep the gang busy while she was pregnant." Sorry--just not a satisfying enough payoff for events that seemed to be approaching epic-scale status. When you raise up an almost-unkillable monster (the Beast), rain fire on downtown Los Angeles, resurrect the baddest badass of the entire Whedonverse (Angelus), break Faith out of prison, and get Willow down from Sunnydale, telling me later on that "Oh, that was all just mis-direction" isn't going to cut it--it's gonna take way more justification that that, or I'm going to be left feeling like I didn't get my money's worth.

But even if I accept for a moment that that's true, then I still just can't seem to get past the plothole that there had to be an easier way for Evil Cordy to give birth to herself as Jasmine without anyone finding out. We see several times that she's very magickally-inclined, as powerful--if not more so--than Willow. So why not grab Connor (like he'd ever resist ), hop in the car, do a concealment spell so that the Fang Gang could never locate them, and drive off to Battle Creek, Michigan (or somewhere even more obscure), and let the pregnancy take its course? Obviously, because that wouldn't have made as interesting a show, but like I said, it's a plot hole I just can't ignore if I accept the "It was all a distraction" logic.

And I merely pointed out the arrow thing as one small bit of evidence that the writers weren't necessarily paying a lot of attention to the details of previous episodes. So how about some proof that they weren't paying too much attention to future episodes, either (IOW, were "making it up as they went along", to quote Angel in reference to the Beast's master and 'his' plan)? Go back and watch the start of episode 7, "Apocalypse, Nowish". After a brief Angel/Lorne scene, it starts with Cordy and Connor, in his loft. He's bringing her food, she's watching TV, she's scared, he comforts her, blah-blah-blah. Suddenly you hear the Beast's voice, she gasps and looks up, and there it is, standing before her. It grabs her by the throat, lifts her up, and she wakes up. So I put this before the court: since she turns out to be the evil master in control of this thing, why is she having a nightmare about it?

I know that people who dislike S5 of Angel mainly complain that it didn't have much of a major story arc, that it was too many standalone episodes. But honestly, after S7 of Buffy and S4 of Angel, I'd pretty much lost all faith in the Mutant Enemy writers' ability to tell a season-long story that was concise, consistent, and made complete sense...

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Thursday, January 18, 2007 11:44 AM

CHRISISALL


Quote:

Originally posted by Groosalugg:
But honestly, after S7 of Buffy and S4 of Angel, I'd pretty much lost all faith in the Mutant Enemy writers' ability to tell a season-long story that was concise, consistent, and made complete sense...

Season 7 of Buffy ruled, and made total sense, oh you of the uneven-challenged.
It had only ONE meh ep, and when it was good, it was GREAT!!!<----see the caps? That means I'm right!


On a Sunnydale high Chrisisall

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Thursday, January 18, 2007 11:52 AM

GROOSALUGG


Quote:

Originally posted by chrisisall:
Season 7 of Buffy ruled, and made total sense


I envy you for being able to convince yourself of that, Chris.

Just going back and re-reading Lexan's last post, the line "In comparison to Buffy season seven, Angel season four is ten times better, predominantly in regard to continuity..." kinda sticks out, and gives me a little chuckle. If there were ever the definition of 'damning with faint praise', saying "It made more consistent sense than Buffy S7" certainly qualifies...

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Thursday, January 18, 2007 12:01 PM

DESKTOPHIPPIE


I recognise this season's flaws, but it still winds up being one of my all time favourites. Yes, it was patchy, yes it was weird, yes the Connor/Cordy thing was shudder inducing - and I speak as someone who loves both characters.

All that being said, I think this season had some of the strongest episodes and strongest scenes in the entire show. It helps that I do like Connor, and I loved the way we got to see just how much he had suffered and was suffering still. That scene in the sewers when he explains to Angel why he's so good at tracking still chills me every time I watch it.

Then there's Jasmine. I thought she was kickass. I thought she was absolutely the creepiest villain ever on the show. Someone who inspires adoration, who literally can't be defied... that's just amazing. She was able to see through everyone's eyes to try and track Fred down, even make a man who was burning to death stand in front of her and tell her not to be afraid... no other bad guy ever came close to something like that. It also put our heroes in a truly desperate situation. I loved seeing how they all reacted to being on the run.

Apart from that, the season was filled with little gems - the magic bullet store owner, the demon who "befriends" Fred in the dirt hole, Gunn kicking the cage open after hours of effort, Lilah and Wesley, especially Wesley's reaction to Lilah's death and her sudden reappearance, that weird spider demon offering sacrifice to win Jasmine back to his world... And let's not forget Open Mike Night! Who can forget Open Mike Night! Angel and Connor sing "Mandy" - best scene ever!

All in all, while season four does have it's flaws, it still winds up being one of the best in my opinion. It's funny actually, as I feel exactly the same way about Buffy's fourth season, which inspires a similar reaction from fans.




Graphics available at www.desktophippie.com

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Thursday, January 18, 2007 12:03 PM

CHRISISALL


Quote:

Originally posted by Groosalugg:
If there were ever the definition of 'damning with faint praise', saying "It made more consistent sense than Buffy S7" certainly qualifies...

Peeps told me that season 6 sucked too...and I find it an absorbing (if somewhat painful) experience. If you want consistant sense from fantasy, then go watch (sorry, nothing comes to mind....)! The characters are of paramount importance to me, and season 7 is rich with the character IMO; if I want everything to be reasonable and make sense at all times, well, I guess that's what Star Trek is for. Believe me, I could pick apart almost every ep of every season of Buffy if I wanted to, but like Dark Angel, the core characters hold my interest above the plot holes and percieved inconsistancies. If Lexan loves S4 of Angel, more power to 'im.

No Jaws 3D Chrisisall

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Thursday, January 18, 2007 12:06 PM

CHRISISALL


Quote:

Originally posted by DesktopHippie:
It's funny actually, as I feel exactly the same way about Buffy's fourth season, which inspires a similar reaction from fans.


Buffy S4 was cool.

Who's a little fear demon Chrisisall

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Thursday, January 18, 2007 4:23 PM

CHARLIETHEBLOODY


I'm pretty much of the opinion that angel kept getting better all the way through, so although 5 is my favourite, I also disagree with the people who think season 4 was the worst. it was difficult in places and not the most fun, but it was very good.

buffy 4's my least favourite though. but I love 6 and don't get why people hate that

--------------------------------------
"I'm an artist, with an e and a beret."



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Thursday, January 18, 2007 6:38 PM

GROOSALUGG


Quote:

Originally posted by chrisisall:
The characters are of paramount importance to me, and season 7 is rich with the character IMO


See, that's exactly why I don't like S7! LOL! Because I care more about the characters than the mystical, magickal plots unfolding around them, and IMO, S7 was way too heavy on the First Evil arc, and way too light on the characters we'd all grown to know and love over six seasons. If the First Evil/Potentials arc had been engrossing, well-done, and consistent, maybe then I could've forgiven them for getting away from the character exploration, but to me, that storyline was just a directionless mess. It seems (based on watching the DVD special features) that Joss gave the other writers a starting point, ("Lessons") an idea of his planned ending point ("Chosen"), and left them to it (while he went off to work on Firefly), and on their own, they just couldn't figure out a clear, sensible way to get from A to B...

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Thursday, January 18, 2007 9:42 PM

LEXAN


I have the same opinion…The characters in Buffy season seven just didn't seem to be acting like themselves. For the most part, it seemed as though their personalities had completely vanished and had been replaced by those of mindless zombies (that's a bit of an exaggeration...). The story was so drawn out in most episodes...it seemed as though they didn't know what else they could do and had completely run of ideas. I thought a few more (insightful) character centric episodes could have been included, which actually displayed feelings and partialities true to the characters... I didn't like how most of the characters were used in this season. For example, most of the time Giles is only used for exposition. I wish we had been given more insight into his (and other characters) feelings on the first and its apparent plans of ending the world. Only some episodes dare to delve into this, as if the writers had forgotten what the characters were about...

I think season four of Angel was almost the exact opposite of Buffy season seven (apart from the fact that a lot of episodes in both seasons tended to bleed into each other). The story was a grim and dark one but didn't take itself too seriously (unlike Buffy season seven, which I don't think even managed to be dark, just boring.), the characters were believable (Willow acted more like Willow in that one episode of Angel she appeared in than she had in the entire season of Buffy...) and their feelings deeply explored with irony and profundity, the dialogue was witty and humorous and the action scenes riveting.

By the way, I don’t dislike season five of Angel…at all… I just thought the first half of the season and most of it’s episodes were uninteresting and dull (almost as much as Buffy season seven…). I thought the second half of the season was fantastic, just not fantastic as the fourth season of Angel…

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Friday, January 19, 2007 11:16 AM

CHRISISALL


Quote:

Originally posted by Groosalugg:
It seems (based on watching the DVD special features) that Joss gave the other writers a starting point, ("Lessons") an idea of his planned ending point ("Chosen"), and left them to it (while he went off to work on Firefly), and on their own, they just couldn't figure out a clear, sensible way to get from A to B...

There's certainly a case to be made for what you're saying...in fact you're making that case rather eloquently...I just feel that the bright and creative spots in season 7 more than make up for the 'hollow' or directionless aspects, and I like the season better every time I watch it (now on my fifth time).

Killer of the vam-pire Chrisisall

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Friday, January 19, 2007 12:01 PM

ZEEK


Quote:

Originally posted by Groosalugg:
Go back and watch the start of episode 7, "Apocalypse, Nowish". After a brief Angel/Lorne scene, it starts with Cordy and Connor, in his loft. He's bringing her food, she's watching TV, she's scared, he comforts her, blah-blah-blah. Suddenly you hear the Beast's voice, she gasps and looks up, and there it is, standing before her. It grabs her by the throat, lifts her up, and she wakes up. So I put this before the court: since she turns out to be the evil master in control of this thing, why is she having a nightmare about it?


Now if that's not proofiness I don't know what is.

Season 4 started out with all this rising action and a real sense that there was something big going on. Then it was "eh there was no plan it was just pretty explosions and things to keep you distracted". Way to waste our time writing staff. Unacceptable. Besides like others have said there are easier ways to have a quiet birth. You think Angel wouldn't have listened to Cordy if she just told him she needed time to deal with returning after being a higher being and just left with Connor for a while? He'd have been like putty in her hands. Instead she goes all out and gets the entire city involved. There must have been a different reason for all that stuff at the start of the season.

Jasmine would have made a much better big bad of a whole different season. She had a good storyline of her own, but it just didn't mesh at all with the first half of the season. Which is why she's a very underrated character. She represents the weak payoff of all that rising action.

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Friday, January 19, 2007 4:13 PM

LEXAN


I would say 'Cordelia's' dream about the Beast was just the writer's trying to throw the audience off... They can show a fake dream if they want... Doesn't necessarily make it real or of the canon.

I felt Jasmine’s arc and the rest of the season essentially meshed extraordinarily well. I admire the contrast between Jasmine and what we were expecting…Two completely separate and dissimilar entities. For the whole first part of the season, we were convinced something awful, destructive, sadistic and malicious was going to arise with monstrous intentions. What we ended up with was a demon goddess who was planning on constructing a world free of violence… This fits well with this season and its themes and also is a good lead into season five, which is also about making a distinction between what is good and what is evil when you are faced with characteristics and matters that fall directly in the middle…

Jasmine’s story really wouldn’t work in the context and didacticism of any other season…


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Monday, January 22, 2007 12:50 PM

DESKTOPHIPPIE


Agreed. That moment when Angel was about to kill Cordelia and instead drops his sword and tearfully bows before Jasmine is absolutely brilliant. You just couldn't get a more unexpected ending to that episode.




Graphics available at www.desktophippie.com

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Tuesday, January 23, 2007 6:13 PM

GROOSALUGG


Quote:

Originally posted by Lexan:
I would say 'Cordelia's' dream about the Beast was just the writer's trying to throw the audience off... They can show a fake dream if they want... Doesn't necessarily make it real or of the canon.


If it happens in one of the BtVS or AtS novels, it's not canon. If it happens in one of the comics (with the possible exception of Joss' upcoming BtVS S8 series), it's not canon. If it happens in a fanfic, it's definitely not canon. But if it happens on the show, it's canon!

I'm sorry, but they can't just make something up that doesn't in any way fit with their planned storyline, for the sole purpose of tricking the viewers. That's dishonest on their part, a 'cheat'. They're breaking faith with us, the audience. Basically, it's just lazy writing--not wanting to spend time trying to come up with something that can fool the viewers while still staying within the confines of the story.

But honestly, I feel that it's more a case of 'making it up as they go along', and that their unfolding storyline took them away from (and flat-out contradicted, in some cases) plot elements established earlier in the season. That's not underhanded or dishonest, thankfully--just incompetent (to have not planned it better during the summer, before ever rolling film on ep1).

It's been awhile since I watched the commentaries, so I don't remember specifically which one it was in (tho it had to be either "Orpheus" or "Underneath") but one of the writers (probably Bell or Deknight) mentioned that even a couple of episodes before Jasmine's first appearance, none of them knew yet exactly what Cordelia was going to give birth to--whether it was going to be a giant spider demon, or what. That seems to be a common theme throughout several of the Buffy and Angel audio commentaries: revealing that they sort of tended to let the seasonal arcs unfold on their own, as they went along. That's fine for, say, S4 of Buffy, where the arc wasn't too involved, but for what they did during S4 of Angel (or S7 of Buffy, for that matter), having it be so big and sweeping, it should've been planned out a little better ahead of time...

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Wednesday, January 24, 2007 2:40 AM

DEEPGIRL187


Just out of curiosity, why aren't the comics and novels canon? I thought Joss and Co. accepted them as such.

*************************************************

"I suppose if we couldn't laugh at things that don't make sense, we couldn't react to a lot of life."

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Wednesday, January 24, 2007 8:15 AM

GROOSALUGG


Quote:

Originally posted by deepgirl187:
Just out of curiosity, why aren't the comics and novels canon? I thought Joss and Co. accepted them as such.


I'm not sure what the deal is with the comics--maybe some actually are considered canon. But I've read a few of the novels, and the ones written while the two series were still going on were completely contradicted on more than one occasion. Joss has said that he doesn't read the novels, and has no idea what's happening in them, because, according to him, if he ever did read them, he'd spend all his time re-writing them, and wouldn't get anything else done...

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Thursday, January 25, 2007 2:19 AM

LEXAN


Quote:

Origonally posted by Groosalugg:
If it happens in one of the BtVS or AtS novels, it's not canon. If it happens in one of the comics (with the possible exception of Joss' upcoming BtVS S8 series), it's not canon. If it happens in a fanfic, it's definitely not canon. But if it happens on the show, it's canon!



Not in the strictest sense. I mean, what we saw was most likely a dream of the real Cordy (remember Skip said Cordy was still in there, she just wasn' t the one driving). Here's what Cordy said to Connor before The Beast grabbed her throat in the dream:

‘No one's safe. Don't you understand that? It's coming, and no one can stop it. I wanna warn Angel, but the words won't come out. Why can't I tell him? I feel it. The thing in my dreams... It's real, and it's almost here.’

I, too, wondered why this dream about The Beast happened when Cordy was The Beast's master. However, upon re-watching, I realized it was actually exactly what Cordy says in the dream that infers it's the real Cordy. ‘I wanna warn Angel, but the words won't come out’. Evil Cordy would not be dreaming about this, only the real Cordy would. This is actually a reference to what happens in later episodes (the reveal of Evil Cordy). It' s pretty much the writers giving the audience hints through this ambiguous and indirect dream of Cordy's. Cordy wants to tell Angel what’s going on (about her being possessed) but she can’ t, because ‘she’ s not driving’.

Quote:

Origonally posted by Groosalugg:
I'm sorry, but they can't just make something up that doesn't in any way fit with their planned storyline, for the sole purpose of tricking the viewers. That's dishonest on their part, a 'cheat'. They're breaking faith with us, the audience. Basically, it's just lazy writing--not wanting to spend time trying to come up with something that can fool the viewers while still staying within the confines of the story.



What I said above pretty much proves that it was within the confines of the story, unless you think I'm just making a rationalization, which I'm not, because it's actually a pretty obvious interpretation of the text. Saying that this season had lazy writing I think is an insult to not only this season but also all of Joss' shows. I really found the writing of the season to be most immaculate, probably more so than any other entire season. The writing of the season was superb and virtually unblemished, in that it just kept moving from one first-rate plot point to another without ever contradicting itself (I’d be interested to hear of another ‘contradiction’ in the season, of which you seem to think there are many). It also stayed true to characters (with the exception of Cordy) and referred to episodes as far back as Buffy season one.

Quote:

Origonally posted by Groosalugg:
But honestly, I feel that it's more a case of 'making it up as they go along', and that their unfolding storyline took them away from (and flat-out contradicted, in some cases) plot elements established earlier in the season. That's not underhanded or dishonest, thankfully--just incompetent (to have not planned it better during the summer, before ever rolling film on ep1).



If Joss and those guys were making it all up as they went along...God, they really are brilliant, aren' t they!

Quote:

Origonally posted by Groosalugg:
It's been awhile since I watched the commentaries, so I don't remember specifically which one it was in (tho it had to be either "Orpheus" or "Underneath") but one of the writers (probably Bell or Deknight) mentioned that even a couple of episodes before Jasmine's first appearance, none of them knew yet exactly what Cordelia was going to give birth to--whether it was going to be a giant spider demon, or what. That seems to be a common theme throughout several of the Buffy and Angel audio commentaries: revealing that they sort of tended to let the seasonal arcs unfold on their own, as they went along. That's fine for, say, S4 of Buffy, where the arc wasn't too involved, but for what they did during S4 of Angel (or S7 of Buffy, for that matter), having it be so big and sweeping, it should've been planned out a little better ahead of time...



Even if the writers didn' t know to what Evil Cordy was going to give birth, Joss still did (this, as you stated, has happened with other seasons of Buffy and Angel). He goes through every script, to make sure everything stays true to what has happened in the past and what is going to happen in the future. Joss did not slip in this season any more than other seasons (in which there were very rarely any slip ups).

What I've gather from your previous posts in this thread is that you dislike both Buffy S7 and Angel S4(I agree with you about the former). Just out of interest, if you had to pick, which do you think is better?




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Thursday, January 25, 2007 8:32 AM

GROOSALUGG


Quote:

Originally posted by Lexan:
What I've gather from your previous posts in this thread is that you dislike both Buffy S7 and Angel S4(I agree with you about the former). Just out of interest, if you had to pick, which do you think is better?


I'll take Angel S4 and the dinette set, Chuck.

I don't like the way Angel S4 fits together (or rather, doesn't) as a cohesive whole, but if you lift each individual episode out and take it on its own merits, they're really very well done (with the exception of "Shiny Happy People"). They tell a big, sweeping story that is the subject of each episode from 7-21, yet the focus never gets too far away from the characters themselves, and the characters were always the main reason I tuned in.

With S4 of Angel, I feel like I'm watching a story about several characters caught up in apocalyptic events. With S7 of Buffy, I feel like I'm watching a story about apocalyptic events, which by chance just happens to include some of the characters caught up in it...

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Thursday, January 25, 2007 11:28 AM

ZEEK


Quote:

Originally posted by Lexan:
Not in the strictest sense. I mean, what we saw was most likely a dream of the real Cordy (remember Skip said Cordy was still in there, she just wasn' t the one driving). Here's what Cordy said to Connor before The Beast grabbed her throat in the dream:

‘No one's safe. Don't you understand that? It's coming, and no one can stop it. I wanna warn Angel, but the words won't come out. Why can't I tell him? I feel it. The thing in my dreams... It's real, and it's almost here.’

I, too, wondered why this dream about The Beast happened when Cordy was The Beast's master. However, upon re-watching, I realized it was actually exactly what Cordy says in the dream that infers it's the real Cordy. ‘I wanna warn Angel, but the words won't come out’. Evil Cordy would not be dreaming about this, only the real Cordy would. This is actually a reference to what happens in later episodes (the reveal of Evil Cordy). It' s pretty much the writers giving the audience hints through this ambiguous and indirect dream of Cordy's. Cordy wants to tell Angel what’s going on (about her being possessed) but she can’ t, because ‘she’ s not driving’.


Darn that's actually a decent explination.

I don't think there are so much flat out contradictions in S4 as much as there are just HUGE events that happen and then are swept under the rug with no explination.

Why was Cordy made a higher being in the first place? Why was she returned? What was the beast's purpose? Why the rain of fire? Why blot out the sun? Why kill all of wolfram and hart? What was Jasmine's goal even? Did she just enjoy worshiper snacks handy?

So much of the season had no purpose other than to look cool. That's not Joss quality work. Which is not really an insult to all his shows. If I've heard correctly he did basically give them an outline and let them run the show for season 4. Which is why it turned out so badly. He left them to take on Firefly and iirc charisma's pregnancy is what caused the rewrite midseason. So, they didn't even end up following Joss's outline. In the end we got the poor stories and disappointed fans.

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Thursday, January 25, 2007 3:52 PM

LEXAN


Quote:

Originally posted by Zeek:
Why was Cordy made a higher being in the first place? Why was she returned? What was the beast's purpose? Why the rain of fire? Why blot out the sun? Why kill all of wolfram and hart? What was Jasmine's goal even? Did she just enjoy worshiper snacks handy?

So much of the season had no purpose other than to look cool. That's not Joss quality work. Which is not really an insult to all his shows. If I've heard correctly he did basically give them an outline and let them run the show for season 4. Which is why it turned out so badly. He left them to take on Firefly and iirc charisma's pregnancy is what caused the rewrite midseason. So, they didn't even end up following Joss's outline. In the end we got the poor stories and disappointed fans.



Cordy was made a higher being so Jasmine could use her as an implement to give birth to herself. Jasmine's 'essence' was implanted into Cordy when she was in the 'heavenly dimension'. The Beast needed to make it seem as though the world was ending in order to make sure Evil Cordy could successfully sleep with Connor (therefore getting herself pregnant) without Angel becoming suspicious. If she had slept with him without good reason it would have been obvious she wasn't herself. The Beast killed all of Wolfram and Hart because they would be *against* Jasmine, who, though still evil, was planning world peace. She was planning on killing thousands to save billions.

I really believe this season to be the best Joss has ever done. When Firefly was cancelled prematurely, he poured all his effort into Angel (He's actually stated before that at the time Buffy had kind of lost his interest). The writers actually did follow Joss' outline without any rewrites on their part, because it was on Joss' orders that they wrote the Connor/Cordy thing into the story. Joss has also stated that, because Charisma told him about the pregnancy so far into the season, it was pretty much the only way he could go that would make sense. In the end, I say it doesn’t matter that much, because everything flowed well (to me, anyway).

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Friday, January 26, 2007 2:18 AM

PURPLEBELLY


I'm curious, though not puriently, as to the (mis)timing of events. Has anyone produced timelines for TV series production against personal lives in the Whedonverse? If anyone has a fly-on-the-wall of the writers' meeting that discovered Charisma's unavailability for the action-woman role that was evolving, that would be golden.

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Tuesday, January 30, 2007 8:01 AM

DIETCOKE


My favorite season was five. The Spike and Angel scences were just fantastic. So many great episodes, Smile Time, the one where Angel and Spike go to Rome, oh, and the one where the party for Wolfram and Heart clients goes bad was another great one.

NY/NJ/CT Browncoats: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/firefly_nyc

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Tuesday, January 30, 2007 7:48 PM

LEXAN


Quote:

Originally posted by dietcoke:
My favorite season was five. The Spike and Angel scences were just fantastic.



I really don't get why season five is so popular. I was bored to tears by the Spike and Angel scenes and thought it was terrible and cheapening to the character how Joss brought Spike onto Angel in season five. Though I like the second half of the season, I think season five was by far the worst, in that its tone was dull, its character chemistry lifeless and its scenes almost sleep-inducing at some points.

One thing I thought was really pathetic about season five was how they often ended episodes with Spike and Angel sitting/standing in silence remembering their past misdeeds. It was as though they couldn't think of a final shot to end the episodes. I thought it was pretty pitiful.

When the season was first airing, I actually stopped watching the show half way through, it was so boring and dull. It was only when I bought the DVDs and watched the season in its entirity that I decided it wasn't so bad. Even on the second watching, though, the first half of the season pretty much raised zero interest from me. I actually walked out of the room at times to do other things without pausing it.

Despite this, season five has many good points. As a season, however, it is not very strong, absorbing or well panned out.


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