5×22: Not Fade Away

[Review by S. van Houten – “Iguana-on-a-stick”]

[Writer: Jeffrey Bell and Joss Whedon | Director: Jeffrey Bell | Aired: 05/19/2004]

This is how an era ends. With a bang, and definitely not a whimper.

For eight years and in twelve seasons of television Joss Whedon and his crew told their stories of vampires, demons, and the people who fought them in a world not unlike our own. And we embraced it all; the mix of supernatural and Continue reading “5×22: Not Fade Away”

5×21: Power Play

[Review by S. van Houten – “Iguana-on-a-stick”]

[Writer: David Fury | Director: James A. Contner | Aired: 05/12/2004]

That [is what] you learn when you become a king. You learn to destroy everything that’s not utterly yours. All that matters is victory. That’s how your reign persists. You’re a slave to an insane construct. You are moral. A true ruler is as moral as a hurricane, empty but for the force of his ga Continue reading “5×21: Power Play”

5×20: The Girl in Question

[Review by Debisib]

[Writer: Steven S. DeKnight and Drew Goddard | Director: David Greenwalt | Aired: 05/05/2004]

It is very easy to get excited about an episode like this just by reading the plot synopsis. It has all of the tools one needs to make a great Angel episode. At this point in the series, the characters are already fully developed (except Illyria), so the focus is more on the characters engaging eac Continue reading “5×20: The Girl in Question”

5×19: Time Bomb

[Review by Mike Marinaro]

[Writer: Ben Edlund | Director: Vern Gillum | Aired: 04/28/2004]

Amy Acker. Incredible. Review, done.

But seriously, just how great is Amy Acker? In “Time Bomb” we get to see Illyria be the focal point of a solid, intriguing, and entertaining episode. It’s such a shame Fred was such an underdeveloped character, because Illyria gives Acker far more to do from a Continue reading “5×19: Time Bomb”

5×18: Origin

[Review by Mike Marinaro]

[Writer: Drew Goddard | Director: Terrence O Hara | Aired: 04/21/2004]

Angel continues its run to the finish line with another entertaining and coherent outing. “Origin” not only closes a lot of loose plot threads from previous seasons, but also does it in a way that is seamless and fun. On the deeper side we get some interesting discussions around the natu Continue reading “5×18: Origin”

5×17: Underneath

[Review by Jeremy Grayson]

[Writer: Sarah Fain and Elizabeth Craft | Director: Skip Schoolnik | Aired: 04/14/2004]

I’m going to say it right from the start: “Underneath” rocks. Even if it didn’t come right on the heels of the strongly written and starkly powerful “Shells” [5×16], it would still be an incredibly well-crafted and thematically resonant episode of television. It locks its characters into their Continue reading “5×17: Underneath”

5×16: Shells

[Review by S. van Houten – “Iguana-on-a-stick”]

[Writer: Steven S. DeKnight | Director: Steven S. DeKnight | Aired: 03/04/2004]

“Is that the world we’re fighting for? The right to be heartless, an uncaring shell? To be dead inside?”

Fred is dead, but not quite gone. The line I quoted just now, spoken by Fred late last season, will have gained an awful new significance to the people of Angel Investigations and us Continue reading “5×16: Shells”

5×15: A Hole in the World

[Review by S. van Houten – “Iguana-on-a-stick”]

[Writer: Joss Whedon | Director: Joss Whedon | Aired: 02/25/2004]

It is very hard to pin down “A Hole in the World.” I have struggled with this review for months and I still suspect my experiences will diverge widely from what others have seen. So much depends on the angle you’re watching from. So much changes if you buy in to the episode’s premise, and if you do Continue reading “5×15: A Hole in the World”

5×14: Smile Time

[Review by Iguana-on-a-stick]

[Writer: Joss Whedon (Story) and Ben Edlund (Story and Teleplay) | Director: Ben Edlund | Aired: 02/18/2004]

“Smile Time” is one of the funniest hours of television produced in Joss Whedon’s long and illustrious career. I imagine that there are but a few fans of the series who would disagree with that statement. I certainly think it’s true. And yet, you wouldn’t know it if you watched its early scenes it Continue reading “5×14: Smile Time”

5×13: Why We Fight

[Review by Brachen Man]

[Writer: Steven S. DeKnight and Drew Goddard | Director: Terrence O Hara | Aired: 02/11/2004]

The fifth season of Angel could almost be considered an anomaly. Watching it in retrospect, one doesn’t get the impression that a grand story arc was planned out for it from the very beginning. This isn’t a bad thing of course, as more standalones often mean more variety in the writing, Continue reading “5×13: Why We Fight”