beginning | blinding torment | boils | lies | making me bitter | evil compounds evil | blah blah bity blah

Angel 5.2: Just Rewards

The mopey motherfucker is back. No, I’m not talking about Angel, it’s his show so sadly he never went away. I would be referring to Mr. in-touch-with-his-feminine-side Spike. And, to prove once again that I can be nice, I will say that once they got the really horrifying spat over Buffy and who really had her out of the way, it actually bordered on enjoyable. He’s almost Spike again, versus William the Whipped, though he’s not quite Spike or even William the Bloody, he’s more like Spike the Annoying. But since he’s spending most of his time annoying Angel this episode, I’m totally fine with it. And if they continue along this vein, instead of those two crazy, souled vampires realizing they’re not that different and going all touchy feely huggy on us, I might enjoy this season. Because an entire season of Spike trying to piss off Angel? A dream come true. I mean that. I really do.


The episode picks up where the premiere left off—Spike pops out of the amulet 19 days after he burns to a crisp in the Hellmouth. He then runs at Angel, presumably not to give him a bear hug but rather to kick his ass for giving Buffy Angel breath, and finds himself standing in the middle of a desk. It seems he is incorporeal—we can’t call him a ghost because he’s not a real ghost even though he seems to be a ghost because, as Fred tells us, he lacks ectoplasm and he radiates heat. And I’m sure we were only told this so Spike could say “fine me hot, do you?”. There’s nothing like a good, subtle set up to a joke. And I’d like to point out that even though they’re in the lab at this point so Fred can scan the not-ghost with her fancy schmancy equipment, there is no Knox so could someone please tell me the point of this scene?


Anyway, they’re not sure why they can’t see him, they’re not sure why he’s there, he seems to be maybe tied to the amulet (since he can’t leave LA) which some mysterious person thoughtfully mailed to Wolfram & Hart. After digging it out of the hellmouth. Where it was completely buried. Along with Spike’s ashes. All clear? No? Fine, how’s this: Nobody knows anything.


So not a huge change of pace for this show.


Spike bitches and blathers a bit about what a shame it is a man can’t die saving the world in peace anymore, and the gang sort of hilariously turns subtly on Angel—he never told them that Spike saved the world by wearing the ugly amulet, Angel never told them that Spike had a soul and seriously, why are these people making such a big deal about a soul? The man from the last episode had a soul, and he was trafficking drugs and hookers and having his son converted into a vessel of evil. So seems to me, a soul just ain’t all that. The whipped little Spike is still capable of evil. Oh, they won’t go there, but they should. But they won’t.


But wouldn’t it be nice if they would?


Continuing on, Spike has a soul. So whether Angel likes it or not, he gets a key to the cool kid’s clubhouse. And I love that Angel’s such a baby over this—considering it’s totally his fault. He sired Drusilla, who sired Spike…at least I think that’s still the current story they’re sort of sticking to and it should be noted that instead of calling Angel his sire like he did in School Hard he refers to him as his Grand-sire…so shouldn’t he feel all sad and remorseful that Spike’s only a vampire because of him? And only formerly-evil because of him? And only got the chance to do the deed with Angel’s former girlfriend because of him? Hey, two ex-girlfriends, come to think of it…Drusilla AND Buffy. How’s that for disturbing? Spike’s totally SWUAing Angel. Sure, it all seems innocent enough, but before we know it Spike’s going to adopt the Neanderthal slouch of Angel and then it won’t be long before someone gets a stiletto through the eye. But, anyway, it’s all Angel’s fault, and Angel handles it as well as a three year old. Meaning he’s all petulant and “I didn’t think it was important.” It’s exactly the way you’d want an undead head of a multi-dimensional law firm that specializes in evil to react, you know?


But back to more important issues. The gang is cleaning house. I may have forgotten to mention this last week, but they have Lorne reading the entire staff to weed out the evil evil and frisky evil ones that might not enjoy so much the new regime. In the spirit of getting rid of the overtly evil aspects of the job, Gunn decides to cut a certain department which entails cutting off a certain client from his supply of dead bodies. This client who I think was named Hainsley then takes the bodies and transfers the demon or its essence or whatever it is that travels via a CGI glow into the corpse so the demon can pass as human. And not just any demon—rich demons. I’m not sure if that makes them more evil or less, but Angel isn’t having any of it. So he agrees with Gunn and sends a lackey out to break the news to this evil man. The lackey returns in a couple of buckets. So it didn’t go well. Angel, under the careful taunting of Spike, feels bad about sending the lackey out to get killed and decides to go talk to the evil man himself. Spike tags along because, well, the WB feels that JM is a big pull for the ladies. The evil man is not happy with Angel. He threatens to do very bad things to Angel. The evil man can, by the way, manipulate the dead’s actions. So he’s all up in Angel’s grill, putting the mojo on him, but not too much mojo because he doesn’t want to cheese off the senior partners, and then Angel puts his own mojo on the very bad man—he uses Gunn’s advice and freezes all of the very bad man’s bank accounts and assets and basically leaves him with nothing but his very evil dead butler. Who is only dead, coincidentally, because Angel tossed a spoon rather violently into his forehead.


To be fair, he was trying to turn Angel and Spike into chum.


Not to be outdone, the very bad man pulls the not-corporeal but still dead Spike to him, and I guess we’ll allow it since he is dead and supposedly has molecules to manipulate, and hatches an evil plan. An evil plan that doesn’t go anywhere, because even though ME wants us to think it might, we are too well versed in the way of the misdirection fairy to fall for such amateur crap. Basically the very bad man promises to put Spike’s incorporeal-but-not-a-ghost ass in Angel’s body, allowing him to drive as long as he does the very bad man’s bidding. Once he’s done with Angel’s body, he will give Spike his body back. One would think that the senior partners would realize, since they’re so badass and all, that it’s Spike driving Angel’s vacuous head, but perhaps this very bad man thinks it’s the abs the evil ones are interested in, and not the mind.


I refuse to comment either way.


You’re supposed to assume here that Spike’s all-consuming hatred of Angel took over his soul-ly goodness and took the deal. I’m just here to tell you he didn’t, okay? He drifts on back to W&H and overhears the gang talking about him, debating what to do with him and what he was and decided to basically let Angel sleep on the decision whether or not to take him out without even discussing it with Spike. So Spike goes to Angel’s mysterious new pad and lures him to a graveyard by whining that he overheard the Fang Gang talking about him and he doesn’t want to be this sad little pathetic not-a-ghost so would Angel please take him to hallowed ground and smash the necklace and end his pitiful existence, pretty please?


Also, it seems that now that Angel’s got necro-tinted glass, he sleeps at night. Stupid, that.


So Angel goes to the graveyard, gets taken over by the very bad man’s vindictive mojo and it’s off to the very bad man’s bat cave, so he can work his very evil mojo. He sticks his hand inside Angel and his other hand inside Spike and then Spike sort of crawls up his arm and towards Angel and it’s all part of their brilliant plan. Because they’re learning to work together, see? It’s like Sesame Street, with blood and death and the raising of the dead against their will. Before we know it, Angel and Spike will be singing about pigeons and rubber duckies and sharing a room platonically. It’ll be fabulous.


Not that Ernie would ever stop his transfer to a dead body by hanging out in the living body until Bert can kill it, then take over that dead body and hit Bert until Bert chopped off the dead, possessed body’s head with a decorative plate just because. Now I haven’t watched Sesame Street since that annoying Gina showed up, and things might’ve changed, but I’m pretty sure Ernie would never do that.


Now Bert? That little twisted psycho so would.


I suppose it should also be noted that Spike disappears from time to time, involuntarily, because it appears as if this is going to be an issue very soon as Spike goes to Fred to ask for help because he feels like he’s being pulled into hell. So stay tuned for that.


angel 5.1: conviction | angel 5.3: unleashed