Sunday, 21 December 2014
Angel: There's No Place Like Plrtz Glrb
"We all got our demons..."
On the surface this is a fun, fluffy little season finale in which the bad guys running Pylea get overthrown and everyone is happy ever after. But there are all sorts of little character moments suggesting problems ahead and, of course, the fluffy mood is instantly undercut at the end with the bad news from Sunnydale.
Even at the start, none of the gang want to be in Pylea any more, not even Cordy who begins to realise that, like today's European monarchs, she is nothing but a puppet in a gilded cage. Angel's initial enthusiasm for Pylea, with its straightforward black and white morals and disdain for all shades of grey has faded; he may be all white-hatted human hero, but his vampire side is all demon, whatever faith Fred may have in him. Meanwhile, Gunn and Wesley keep nearly dying in comical ways which neatly undermine Wesley's credentials as a leader.
In fact, Wesley's talents as a leader, or lack of them, are something of a subtext here. His revolutionary plans involve the sacrifice of the lives of some under him, and a particularly cynical usage of Angel. How very, well, Macchiavellian. This, along with hints to his kinkiness, seem to point to a deepening and darkening of his character to come.
But for now all is fluffy, Groo is in charge of Pylea and all the doubtless horrible stuff is still to come. But all that's for another season...