Sunday, 17 February 2013

Angel: Untouched

"Make love? What are you- from the eighteenth century?"

It's interesting to see the process of Gunn being slowly integrated into the scene. His gang seems already to have vanished, and the debate about whether to officially start paying him as a member of the team seems to make things pretty much final. Cordy and Wes certainly need a bit of help, what with Angel's sleepiness and Darla obsession.

This is essentially an episode with the spotlight on the deliciously evil Lilah, and a chance for me to praise the performance of the delightfully hissable Stephanie Romanov. She's so cynical as to invest an awful lot of time in the innocent, vulnerable and extremely dangerous Bethany. She's an assassin, in theory: interesting that Wolfram and Hart are meaning to kill Angel at this point. Her character is extremely well crafted; childhood abuse has taken away her self-esteem and made her promiscuous in a desperate but unfulfilling desire to please men with meaningless sex. Angel essentially helps her by interacting with her in a more meaningful way. I appreciate, incidentally, how the story declines to proffer a simplistic, anti-sex subtext; sex and sexual abuse are entirely different things.

Arc-wise, it appears that Darla genuinely is in Angel's room: intriguing. This is a relatively arc-lite episode, by recent standards, and the weakest of the season thus far, but my excitement has not diminished.

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