Angel: Season One on DVD--stands on its own
By
Phil Davetas
2/25/2003 9:31:56 PM

The show, Angel, truly stands on its own regardless of the many series cross-overs. To get the big picture, it would probably be best to acquire Buffy 4 and watch these box sets side by side. The characters are still particularly intriguing and compelling. One of the best character set-ups is that Buffy was surrounded by a group of misfits, but misfits by default --while Angel's group are misfits are by choice. Angel purposely avoids all human contact as much as possible, while still trying to protect them. And still, Angel, Cordy and Wesley's dependent friendship is a strained one, seeing that Angel can go neck-wacky at any moment. Not your usual TV fare, and you gotta hand it to Joss Whedon and company for making this possible.

Buffy 3 tops off with Angel taking a hike and moving to Los Angeles to atone for his sins (or more appropriately, to ditch Buffy). Angel spends his nights snuffing demons and brooding over the faces of his past victims for kicks. But due to Cordelia's burgeoning stardom, he's forced to party and mingle in social events of Hollywood's netherworld where demons and assorted necros run wild. But Angel must avoid fun at all costs because if he acquires true happiness, he loses his soul and the evil necro that he once was will return—or so it is written in some ancient gypsy spell book.

The packaging is much like Buffy in the sense that the featurettes are 10 minutes and under with four featurettes. Also look out for a Season One overview at the end of disk three (Warning: spoilers are afoot on the featurettes). Featurette spotlights include Angel, Cordy and another on the demons. There's also a commentary on selected episodes, much like the preceding Buffy box sets. And if you like those still galleries that they sometimes sneak in there, they're in there too--including blueprints, of all things. There are no trailers on this one. But once you get Angel Season One, you'll be all caught up on your Buffy and Angel until June and September 2003.

Angel - Season One
NR, 1999-2000, 999 min. (6 Disks), Fox Home Entertainment.

Special Features:

Selected Audio Commentary, Season One Overview with Cast and Crew Interviews, Cool Featurettes, Selected Scripts and Still and Photo Gallery.

Episode List:

"City Of"
Written by David Greenwalt & Joss Whedon, Directed by Joss Whedon. Air Date: 10/5/99
Angel's essential arrival to The City of Angels meeting half breed demon, Doyle. While bumping into Cordelia at a Hollywood shindig, Angel finds that a big-time necro is after her.

"Lonely Heart"
Written by David Fury, James A. Contner. Air Date: 10/12/99
Now that Angel Investigations is on the job, they skirt off to a bar to pick up on a body-hopping parasite. No, it's not Ron Jeremy, thank you very much.

"In the Dark"
Written by Douglas Petrie, Directed by Bruce Seth Green. Air Date: 10/19/99
See, Oz has got like, this ring that makes vampires unkillable and drops it off with Angel seeing that he can like use it, or something. The first of the Buffy-Angel cross-overs.

"I Fall to Pieces"
Written by David Greenwalt, Directed by Vern Gillum. Air Date: 10/26/99
Looks like someone took King Missile's "Detachable Penis" just a little too seriously. This one's about a psycho-stalking-surgeon obsessed with some random chick and he just comes apart because he thinks it's cool. Maybe this was inspired by Clive Barker's "The Body Politic"?

"RM W/ A VU"
Written by Jane Espenson, Directed by Scott McGinnis. Air Date: 11/2/99
Cordelia's found the perfect rent-control pad, but it's haunted. I swear, poltergeists have got to learn the value of the dollar.

"Sense and Sensitivity"
Written by Tim Minear, Directed by James A. Contner. Air Date: 11/9/99
Turns out that Kate's been initiated into a group for police sensitivity training, but something is amiss.

"The Bachelor Party"
Written by Tracey Stern, Directed by David Straiton. Air Date: 11/16/99
Doyle gets invited to his ex-wife's fiancé's bachelor party for drinking, demon-swapping stories and oh, yes, the traditional Ano-Movic lobotomy.

"I Will Remember You"
Written by David Greenwalt & Jeannine Renshaw, Directed by David Grossman. Air Date: 11/23/99
Looks like Buffy's running around now that Angel's human--boing! Now they can have mad monkey sex without him getting all evilled up.

"Hero"
Written by Howard Gordon & Tim Minear, Directed by Tucker Gates. Air Date: 11/30/99
Doyle's final stand.

"Parting Gifts"
Written by David Fury & Jeannine Renshaw. Directed by James A. Contner. Air Date: 12/14/99
Once Buffy's watcher, once Faith's watcher, now the recently-fired Wesley Wyndam-Pryce is a leather-bound demon hunter--excuse me--"rogue" demon hunter.

"Somnambulist"
Written by Tim Minear, Directed by Winrich Kolbe. Air Date: 1/18/00
Well, Angel's in for it now. Kate just found out what he is. Meanwhile, a necro is sucking up some neckbones around town and he ain't sharing.

"Expecting"
Written by Howard Gordon, Directed by David Semel. Air Date: 1/25/00
STD's, pre-mature pregnancies and now demonic incubi. Cordelia just left all the homogenized safe sex dogma back in Sunnydale while she is pregnant with a demonic baby.

"She"
Written by David Greenwalt & Marti Noxon, Directed by David Greenwalt. Air Date: 2/8/00
The only thing you gotta know about this one is that this is the one where Angel and Wesley are dancing fools.

"I've Got You Under My Skin"
Written by Jeannine Renshaw, Directed by R. D. Price. Air Date: 2/15/00
You thought Michael Jackson was bad? A vile demon possesses a Culkin and shit gets weird.

"The Prodigal"
Written by Tim Minear, Directed by Bruce Seth Green. Air Date: 2/22/00
A race of demons have been toking on some netherworldly crack and Kate's father is connected.

"The Ring"
Written by Howard Gordon, Directed by Nick Marek. Air Date: 2/29/00
Angel plays gladiator in an underground demon cock fight.

"Eternity"
Written by Tracey Stern, Directed by Regis B. Kimble. Air Date: 4/4/00
A celebrity star is burning out due to her age. Once she finds out that Angel's a necro and can stay young forever, she… well, you get the picture. It's just like that one Buffy episode.

"Five By Five"
Written by Jim Kouf, Directed by James A. Contner. Air Date: 4/25/00
The blood-sucking swill of Wilfram & Hart hire Faith (fresh out of her coma) to assassinate Angel.

"Sanctuary"
Written by Tim Minear & Joss Whedon, Directed by Michael Lange. 5/2/00
Faith's on everyone's shit list--Kate, the Watcher's Council and the relentless Buffy.

"War Zone"
Written by Gary Campbell, Directed by David Straiton. Air Date: 5/9/00
Charles Gunn and his homeless rag -tag gang of necro-hunting kids come face-to-face with Angel.

"Blind Date"
Written by Jeannine Renshaw, Directed Thomas J. Wright. Air Date: 5/16/00
Woldfram & Hart's Lindsey McDonald links up with Angel to save three blind kids from imminent death.

"To Shanshu in L.A."
Written and Directed by David Greenwalt. Air Date: 5/23/00
Wesley and Cordy get themselves beat up pretty good and Angel's on his way to face his grim destiny and of course the wicked twist ending.

 

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