Friday, April 8, 2011

Review: Angel the Series

Disclaimer: Slight spoilers ahead

Starring: David Boreanaz, Charisma Carpenter, Alexis Denisof, J. August Richards, Andy Hallett, Amy Acker, Stephanie Romanov, Vincent Kartheiser, James Marsters, Christian Kane, Julie Benz, Mercedes McNabb, Glen Quinn
Created by: Joss Whedon

I have now finished all the Buffyverse shows. I feel a little empty inside. Angel is, for those who crawled out from under a rock, a spinoff of Buffy, in which Angel moves to Los Angeles and has a detective agency.

This show gets off to a slow start. The first season is highly episodic (not to say that there aren't some good ones) and sort of directionless. Season 2 features Angel being highly annoying, though I liked the last couple episodes, because we get Fred! Yay! I really, really liked Season 3. I think that's when the show really gets into its own. It goes into some dark places, though the ending part is sort of dumb in some ways. I also liked Season 4. Season 5 has Spike join the cast, which is awesome, but is not so great in other ways. Finally, the ending is totally unsatisfying.

There is a little too much damsel-in-distress crap at first, but there are some great characters and we get some top-notch character development as well. I love Cordy and Fred, and Wesley, so of course they have terrible fates. Angel was never my favorite character in Buffy, and he isn't always my favorite character in this show either, but I do like him better (at least some of the time). Jeff asked me if Angel was to Buffy as Torchwood is to Doctor Who, and my response is sort of. It is darker. Sure. More adult? Maybe. Sexier? Not really. The plots can be a little more out there, I think. There's good romance, some horror, suspense, etc. There were some pretty bad episodes (like Soul Purpose in Season 5, ugh) but I mostly liked it. Not quite as much as Buffy, but it has its own place in my heart.

Grade: B+

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