Tuesday, June 9, 2009

DVD review - Buffy season 5/Angel season 2 episodes 6

Continuing my viewing and reviewing of Buffy the Vampire Slayer season 5 and Angel season 2...

*** SPOILERS ***

B5-6: Family (written by Joss Whedon, airdate 11/7/00)

Joss once again shows why these are his characters. This episode was outstanding as it focuses mostly on Tara, her relationship with Willow, and her relationship with her family. Sure, we get the importance of "family" with Buffy acting upon the news she learned last episode about Dawn - how she turns to only Giles (her surrogate father) to share the truth, and how she tries to keep Dawn protected even at the risk of alienating Riley, the man she loves. But the key here is Tara and how her father, brother Donny and cousin Beth show up just before her 20th birthday to take her home before the "evil" in her is revealed. He has her convinced she'll revert to a demon form without their watchful eye, but the true "demon" is revealed by, of all people, Spike when he strikes Tara only to feel pain. In his usual role as speaker of the truth, he points out that this is clealry a family legend made up just to keep the women in line. Who's the evil here? Joss hits us with those classic heart-string moments - first when Buffy and the others declare that Tara is "family" to them and her father would have to go through all of them if he wants to take her against her will. The second falls at the birthday party Willow put together - as we get a very honest, emotional moment between she and Tara as they dance. The actresses sell this scene and the one that opened the show with the two in bed. It is a tender, honest relationship built on love. It works and the viewer feels it. Bravo. Oh, and Spike fantasizing about fighting the Slayer while having sex with Harmony - that's just so wrong in so many ways but oh so right too. Gotta love Spike.

A2-6: Guise Will Be Guise (written by Jane Espenson, airdate 11/7/00)

Keeping with the theme of the night (birthday parties), Jane serves us up a hilarious Angel episode. Alexis is outstanding at slap-stick and really shines as Wesley posing as Angel (and here I thought Cordy's impersonation of their boss was good). The jump-back before entering Bryce's house, the choking down some blood, the faked furrowed brow - LOL funny. The actress who played Virginia was great too, and the chemistry with her character and Wesley's was wonderful (I hope we see more of her). Of course, the scenes with Angel and the "swami" were funny too - analyzing his car, his clothes, his hair product - it seemed to be a commentary on the character, a funny one. Now, the fish hook in the lip - YOW - that had to hurt. And the best line from Angel - "you were in Virginia?" - oh how true how true. The only glitch I caught - Cordelia's blouse kept changing back and forth in a couple scenes when she clearly hadn't been changing out of her lawyer clothes yet. I'll forgive it though as this one was very very entertaining. Great job, Jane.

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