• Thank you for visiting Buffy-Boards. You obviously have exceptional taste. We just want you to know that:
    1. You really should register so you can chat with us!
    2. Twelve thousand people can't be wrong.
    3. Buffy-Boards loves you.
    4. See 1 through 3.
    Come on, register already!

Did the Powers That Be Trick Angel?

W

WillowFromBuffy

Guest
So, Doyle receive a vision telling him that Buffy is in danger, Angel goes to Sunnydale and snaps the neck of an Indian, Buffy follows him back to LA, they fight a demon whose blood turns Angel human, Angel speaks to the oracles, who seem completely unconcerned that they've lost their newest champion. When Angel comes back, the oracles reiterate the assassin demon's extremely vague prophecy about "soldier of darkness" that will kill Buffy unless Angel is there to help her. Angel gives up his humanity and commits to the PTB's cause.

Now, Angel never saves Buffy from any soldiers of darkness. Did the PTB play Angel the same way Skip played Cordelia in "Birthday"? Did they give Angel what he wanted, knowing they could trick him into making an active choice to give it up?
 
W

WillowFromBuffy

Guest
I wonder if it meant that Buffy would be killed by the Scourge that were coming soldiers.
Whatever happened to the Scourge? Did Angel fly into a rage after Doyle died and kill them all or were they so bummed out that their bomb got defused that they just gave up and went home?
 

NeonSlayer

Potential
Joined
Jul 26, 2018
Messages
457
Age
32
The "soldiers of darkness' and "end of days" foreshadowed BtVS s7's End of Days and Angel saving Buffy from Caleb, the First Evil's second in command. The FE was darkness personified. Buffy was able to regroup & killed Caleb then came up with the plan to activate every Potential into warriors of Light & led an army into Hell to fight thousands of the FE's soldiers of darkness.

Once Angel completes his reason for giving up Buffy again, he spends years trying to get her back. By BtVS s10 he still hopes for a second chance to prove himself to her.
 
W

WillowFromBuffy

Guest
So, Angel gave up his humanity, just so that he could be there to knock Caleb on the head with his super strength?

The fact that Buffy asks Angel to stay out of the fight suggests that all she needed to win was to see Angel, so if Angel had shown up before the fight, as a human or as a vampire, she would have been able to win all on her own.

If the Powers knew that this precise moment would happen and that Angel would have to be there for Buffy to win, then I say they also knew that Angel would give up his humanity the first time he came to visit them ... and probably had it planned all along.
 

Grace

Destructo-Girl
Joined
Mar 23, 2017
Messages
1,787
Black Thorn
Now, Angel never saves Buffy from any soldiers of darkness.
Well, I don't know that we know this. I have different possible head canons for this episode, but one of them is that in the original timeline, the Mohra demon summoned more from its dimension (or maybe had laid demon eggs or whatever in the saline plant), so the delay in killing it set off the end of days. By taking back the day, Angel changed the timeline, so that the Mohra never had time to summon the army. So just in taking back the day, Angel saved Buffy's life (and I think she would have died a non-mystical death by sword or whatever in combat — one there was no coming back from). It was Angel's sacrifice that saved her, not his strength.

Did the PTB play Angel the same way Skip played Cordelia in "Birthday"? Did they give Angel what he wanted, knowing they could trick him into making an active choice to give it up?
My other head canon (and I was excited to find out this is backed up by something Tim Minear said) is that, yes, the PTB set the whole thing up as a test for Angel. They wanted him to show his commitment, so they manipulated the whole series of events to find out if he would actually go through with giving up his humanity.

Here's the quote from Minear: "Actually, the one thing that I would say about the episode is that we discussed the idea that the entire situation was a test by the Powers That Be. It was supposed to be sort of the 'Last Temptation of Angel'. In The Last Temptation of Christ, his whole fever dream when he’s on the cross is that he comes down off the cross; he gets to live a normal life and grow old, and at the end he chooses to make the sacrifice. That was sort of the idea, and something that kind of got lost there was the idea that they were trying to see if he was worthy. There were no scenes of this shot; I think the idea just kind of fell out of the script naturally, but it was one thing we discussed at some point during the breaking of the story. But then, as will happen, it became about the emotional aspect of it."

One major sign of this to me is that the Oracles tell Angel that he's released from his fealty, but Doyle gets another vision. If he truly was no longer the champion of the Powers, wouldn't they have sent the vision to someone else, or stopped sending visions altogether? (I was actually just talking to @Mrs Gordo the other day about possibly writing a story for the IWRY marathon next year where Doyle gets the vision earlier, during the tea and crackers convo, and Buffy has the sense to actually question this.)
 

AlphaFoxtrot

Scooby
Joined
Sep 11, 2017
Messages
830
Age
37
I think it was a safe bet. Almost every Buffy season finale involved an army of darkness with an escalating big bad trying to end the world, so that the final season would be the ultimate battle, with the enigmatic First Evil, ending in a Buffy-Angel crossover, is what everyone suspected the last season would be. Sadly, the execution...
 
W

WillowFromBuffy

Guest
@Grace It just struck me, Jesus destiny was to suffer on the cross, and Angel suffers on any cross. Darla says that no matter how good a boy Angel is, God does not want him, but Angel's hardships could also be evidence that he is divinely chosen.

"Remember that these forty years the Lord your God led you all the way in the wilderness, so that He might humble you and test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep His commandments."
 

Grace

Destructo-Girl
Joined
Mar 23, 2017
Messages
1,787
Black Thorn
@Grace It just struck me, Jesus destiny was to suffer on the cross, and Angel suffers on any cross. Darla says that no matter how good a boy Angel is, God does not want him, but Angel's hardships could also be evidence that he is divinely chosen.

"Remember that these forty years the Lord your God led you all the way in the wilderness, so that He might humble you and test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep His commandments."
I definitely feel like Angel's story gets more inspiration from religious themes than probably any other character. Someday I want to write a meta on how Season 1 of Angel is thematically wrapped around three temptations. Not just IWRY, but the Gem of Amara and the Shanshu. It takes until the series finale for Angel to sacrifice that last one, but he is willing to, and it makes for a really intriguing journey, even if the show meanders a lot in the middle.
 
W

WillowFromBuffy

Guest
I definitely feel like Angel's story gets more inspiration from religious themes than probably any other character. Someday I want to write a meta on how Season 1 of Angel is thematically wrapped around three temptations. Not just IWRY, but the Gem of Amara and the Shanshu. It takes until the series finale for Angel to sacrifice that last one, but he is willing to, and it makes for a really intriguing journey, even if the show meanders a lot in the middle.
I would love to see Angel question the PTB, though, because they clearly don't have the best interest of him, his team or the people of LA at heart, even though they claim to be fighting an all important war for good.

Like with Buffy, who gives her life in "Prophecy Girl," just like the WC would have wanted, but other times, she is like, "Screw this! I am doing this my way."
 
Grace
Grace
Same.

NeonSlayer

Potential
Joined
Jul 26, 2018
Messages
457
Age
32
I would love to see Angel question the PTB, though, because they clearly don't have the best interest of him, his team or the people of LA at heart, even though they claim to be fighting an all important war for good.

Like with Buffy, who gives her life in "Prophecy Girl," just like the WC would have wanted, but other times, she is like, "Screw this! I am doing this my way."
This is one of the reasons I disagree with you on Cordelia being Angel's Horatio. If anything, Cordelia is a cautionary tale for why it's bad to be so gullible.

All throughout AtS Cordy fell for things and it is what got her killed. Believing the visions came from the PTB, that they were Champions of the PTB, that having PTB visions was reason enough for her to be Queen of Pylea, that Skip was trustworthy because he worked for the PTB, that she should infuse herself with unknown DNA so she could continue working for the PTB, that she had become a PTB and should leave earth because a PTB emissary told her to. Even in her final episode she brings up "the Powers" owing her and passes along a vision she thinks is from the PTB. In Tomorrow Cordelia asked "This is the final test, isn't it?" showing she thought she was being tested for months maybe years and was going along with it.

Angel needed Buffy because she is the one who wouldn't fall for it. She quit the Watcher's Council, told off the US military, told off her teachers & principal, told off the Shadow Men, and her response to Whistler was "Why don't you try getting off your immortal ass and fighting evil once in awhile because I'm sick & tired of doing it." She is offered or given power and starts looking for the strings.
 
Last edited:
W

WillowFromBuffy

Guest
This is one of the reasons I disagree with you on Cordelia being Angel's Horatio. If anything, Cordelia is a cautionary tale for why it's bad to be so gullible
If I had been the showrunner for Angel, the Cordelia turns evil storyline would never have happened. Cordelia would have continued to play the role she does in S1 and S2, where she is the character that contextualises and mediates Angel's journey to the audience. Angel is the Hamlet/Ahab/Holmes and Cordelia is his Horatio/Ishmael/Watson. If I could chose, the show would end with Angel, Spike and Illyria dying in the alley and Cordelia (and possibly Gunn) surviving to tell the tale of Angel's exploits to Buffy and the Scoobies.

I know that the Jasmine storyline ruined this for me. You don't have to tell me.
 
FaithLehane16
FaithLehane16
Cordelia is weaker than everyone on the Angel team. She was the weakest link when it came to the Scoobies.

white avenger

white avenger
Joined
Sep 30, 2006
Messages
15,147
Age
71
Location
rome, georgia
I think that it's safe to say that the Powers have been playing Angel like their own personal deck of cards ever since Whistler originally recruited him, if not longer. They might have even been instrumental in his receiving his soul, with its odd anti-happiness element. Looking at it in that way makes sense in many ways, from manipulating him into meeting Buffy in Sunnydale, knowing that he would fall in love with her the first moment that he laid eyes on her, to orchestrating the birth of Connor, Angel's becoming CEO of Wolfram & Hart, to his final confrontation with their army in that alley. "Smile Time" was actually the Great Reveal of the entire series.

Angel is the puppet of the Powers That Be.
 

Myheadsgonenumb

Potential
Joined
Oct 23, 2018
Messages
211
Age
34
Location
Leeds, England
The whole of IWRY is just such melodramatic BAngel fanservice, it's written entirely to get SMG sobbing for the fans and to hell with any sense it's supposed to make.
Wanting it to make sense and therefore creating a headcanon to solve the problems, though - I completely agree with @whiteavenger that the PTB are manipulating Angel from the beginning and everything that happens to him is some kind of test, or manoeuvring him into position. He is used by the powers every bit as much as Cordelia is. Probably more.
I think it helps if you don't think the PTB are actually forces of good - they are simply the opposing forces to the Senior Partners. They are two sets of immortal beings locked in a chess game - where the earth is the board - one side trying to destroy the world one side trying to stop it. Not because they actually care one way or another - it's just a game to them. A fun way to while away eternity. They are completely dispassionate about the whole thing. Angel is one of the PTBs chess pieces, but if anything happens to him - they'll get another.

Having said this, Angel isn't their only chess piece so this:
One major sign of this to me is that the Oracles tell Angel that he's released from his fealty, but Doyle gets another vision. If he truly was no longer the champion of the Powers, wouldn't they have sent the vision to someone else, or stopped sending visions altogether?
Doesn't have to be the gotcha! it appears. The visions are Doyle's punishment, he has his own atonement to work towards and he gets the visions independently of Angel (as we see from his first ever vision). Angel has been released from his fealty - but Doyle hasn't. Doyle still works for the powers, so it makes sense he would still get the visions. What he then does with that vision is his problem - not the PTB's - they're just playing chess.
 

Grace

Destructo-Girl
Joined
Mar 23, 2017
Messages
1,787
Black Thorn
Doyle still works for the powers, so it makes sense he would still get the visions. What he then does with that vision is his problem - not the PTB's - they're just playing chess.
Yeah, but the PTB seem to have sent Doyle information about Angel to connect them in the first place, right? So they seem to have a preference for how Doyle deals with the visions. The visions seem to be “for” Angel once the series begins, and there’s no change after Angel turns human.

Though maybe Doyle got a vision of Buffy because he was supposed to start working with her and Angel screwed it up. ;)

Obviously this is just fun speculation, but it still seems fishy to me.
 

NeonSlayer

Potential
Joined
Jul 26, 2018
Messages
457
Age
32
Yeah, but the PTB seem to have sent Doyle information about Angel to connect them in the first place, right? So they seem to have a preference for how Doyle deals with the visions. The visions seem to be “for” Angel once the series begins, and there’s no change after Angel turns human.

Though maybe Doyle got a vision of Buffy because he was supposed to start working with her and Angel screwed it up. ;)

Obviously this is just fun speculation, but it still seems fishy to me.
I never thought of the last part, that Doyle had a vision of Buffy because he was supposed to work with her. I don't necessarily agree but it's a good theory. He saw her photo and asked Angel if she likes a man with an Irish accent. Buffy was in the vision in City Of that directed him to Angel. The vision in Bachelor Party showed Buffy on a regular patrol instead of the Chumash siege but his visions often gave an imprint of the villain or victim instead of cutting straight to the villain killing the victim like Cordelia's visions when she inherited it from him.

Doyle was up for working with Buffy in IWRY, asking Angel if he was going to wake Buffy, saying they should go back to get Buffy. Calling out Cordelia on her unfounded animosity towards Buffy.

Doyle was the AtS Whistler in some ways. I think I heard they originally wanted Whistler for the role (I prefer the actor who plays Doyle as a character while liking Whistler as a game changer) And how did Whistler get Angel to join the GvE fight? By driving him 3,000 miles from NYC to Los Angeles to watch Buffy get called as the Slayer. And AtS started only 15 months after Whistler made his presence known to Buffy.
 

Myheadsgonenumb

Potential
Joined
Oct 23, 2018
Messages
211
Age
34
Location
Leeds, England
Calling out Cordelia on her unfounded animosity towards Buffy.
I think that's a very harsh reading of:

Cordelia: where she goes dark forces follow.
Doyle: Buffy gave it mites?
Cordelia: well what else could it be?
Doyle: Jealousy, maybe?
Cordelia: I'm jealous of her? Oh please
Doyle: It's just a theory.

All said in a very gentle and loving tone. (not like Doyle has any idea whether Cordelia's animosity towards Buffy is warranted or not - he doesn't know thing one about Buffy. Sometimes people just don't get along - doesn't make either of them bad people. And Cordy is worried about the perfect happiness clause - hence freaking - that's not unfounded.) Doyle might have been up for working with Buffy, where it was convenient to do so - but when it comes down to it, he would always be loyal to Cordelia over Buffy. He was only in love with one of them, after all.
 
FaithLehane16
FaithLehane16
It's not harsh.

NeonSlayer

Potential
Joined
Jul 26, 2018
Messages
457
Age
32
I think that's a very harsh reading of:

Cordelia: where she goes dark forces follow.
Doyle: Buffy gave it mites?
Cordelia: well what else could it be?
Doyle: Jealousy, maybe?
Cordelia: I'm jealous of her? Oh please
Doyle: It's just a theory.

All said in a very gentle and loving tone. (not like Doyle has any idea whether Cordelia's animosity towards Buffy is warranted or not - he doesn't know thing one about Buffy. Sometimes people just don't get along - doesn't make either of them bad people. And Cordy is worried about the perfect happiness clause - hence freaking - that's not unfounded.) Doyle might have been up for working with Buffy, where it was convenient to do so - but when it comes down to it, he would always be loyal to Cordelia over Buffy. He was only in love with one of them, after all.
Since Doyle knows that Angel is deeply in love with Buffy and experienced perfect happiness with her, I think it's fair to say he knew a few things about Buffy. He knew of Buffy before he knew of Cordelia.

I never said anything about Doyle choosing between the two or that he turned on Cordelia like it was Empty Places, just that he could see the situation for what it was instead of having blind loyalty like Oz (disliked how he could hear Willow talk crap about people without saying anything).

Doyle verbally stated the ridiculousness of Cordelia blaming Buffy's presence for the plant dying then said he thinks she's jealous. That technically counts as calling someone out on their jealousy. A calmer version of Buffy in Revelations calling out Xander on being jealous of Angel and less baiting version of Xander in Killed by Death calling Cordelia out on her jealousy of his feelings for Buffy.

Cordelia was not just worried about the happiness clause or she would have stopped being mad at Buffy when it was proven to not be an issue. She wouldn't complain she's out of a job or say to Buffy's face that it's Buffy's fault that Angel went to fight the Mohra demon without superpowers or Buffy.

Buffy & Cordelia didn't just not get along. Cordelia went out of her way to dislike Buffy. Blaming her for Machida, wishing she never came to Sunnydale because Xander cheated with Willow, taunting that Buffy doesn't have a future, hearing Buffy tell Wes that she's a friend and replying "let's not exaggerate", saying that because Buffy was trying to save Angel's life instead of getting Wesley's job back "so typical, all she thinks about is herself", still taking shots at her in multiple AtS episodes (Buffy only referenced her once in BtVS s4-7).
 
Last edited:

Myheadsgonenumb

Potential
Joined
Oct 23, 2018
Messages
211
Age
34
Location
Leeds, England
I have said it before: Cordelia exists in Buffy's universe - of course Cordelia talks about Buffy more than Buffy talks about Cordelia. That is not an argument for Cordelia being unreasonable, it is just evidence (unneeded) that Buffy is more important to the verse than Cordy is.

You don't have to go out of your way to dislike someone - if you dislike someone you find it pretty easy to do so, whether your reasons are good/ bad or indifferent. But Cordelia isn't going out of her way to blame Buffy for the things that go wrong - from her POV, Buffy is to blame! Fact is (as Xander points out about him and Willow in the pack) Cordelia's life didn't need a lot of saving before Buffy showed up. Buffy comes to town - freaky things follow, including but not limited to: going blind; nearly having her face cut off; nearly having her head cut off and sewn onto someone else's body; being kidnapped by a vampire cult and almost used to resurrect the master AND various run of the mill vamp attacks. No it's not fair to blame Buffy - she didn't create this stuff - but it is Buffy's appearance in Cordelia's life that brings the world of the weird to Cordelia's attention. Of course she links them (almost like - where she goes - dark forces follow). And she blames Buffy for with happened with Xander because she would never have looked at Xander if Buffy hadn't made him marginally cooler by hanging with him (which is pretty close to a compliment coming from Cordy) and that they kept getting into life and death situations (only since Buffy came into town) and they are always all sexy. Maybe it's not 100% rational (she is heartbroken, angry and lashing out at this point) but there is logic there (plus the whole - it's Buffy's verse - of course everything has to come back to Buffy whether it really does or not thing. Blaming characters for extra textual necessity - and existing purely to revolve around the central character - isn't really fair) .
We see Buffy (both the show and the character) from her own perspective - which is her privilege as the main character. But from Cordy's perspective, at the beginning - Buffy is the new girl who pinned her against the wall by her throat and threatened her with a pointy stick - and who seemed to know the 'gang members' having a turf war who broke into the bronze and threatened Cordy's life. We see the scene in the harvest - in the computer room - as Willow getting one back on that horrible Cordelia for being mean to our hero but ... Cordelia got frigging assaulted by that hero last night! Yes it was a mistake but ... 'thundering Loony', with the knowledge of the situation Cordy has, is NOT an unfair assessment. It's not until episode 11 that she realises something more is going on (and as most of Sunnydale never find out, she can hardly be blamed for that.)
On the other hand - in Dead Man's Party when all of Buffy's 'friends' are tearing into her- who is that actually stands up for her? Cordelia. Cordelia is the only person who can (or even bothers to try to) see the summer's events from Buffy's POV. Her input is not welcomed. Now - 'Cordelia, get out of my shoes' is one of my favourite lines - I'm certainly not having a go at Buffy... but Buffy starts by attacking Cordy with a stick and isn't ever especially nice to her either - making snide comments both to her face and behind her back and showing no appreciation (and often disdain) for the times Cordelia tries to be helpful.
They don't get along - that's fine. Therefore neither has to say anything nice about the other and can say catty things about each other if they so choose. Real people do that about people they don't particularly get along with too. It's not especially mature, but it doesn't make someone a bad person either. Neither Buffy and Cordelia pretend to be friends and then say horrible things about each other - they're not hypocrites - they're just ... people who through circumstances were forced to spend time together and find the other pretty irritating. That is the relationship they have and Buffy is as guilty of it as Cordelia, if you make adjustments for the fact that Cordelia is just not as important and does not have to be brought up at sporadic intervals to remind us who's show (or spinoff) we're watching.

I don't understand what you mean about she wasn't worried about the happiness clause because she would have stopped being angry when it was proven to be an issue ... B and A don't have sex until after she has freaked out. Doyle points out Angel isn't cursed anymore. Cordelia - being the one who has actually met Angelus, and known people he has killed, reserves the right to be a bit more cautious. She doesn't go back to that point once it has been proven.
Not liking Buffy - or being her absolute BFF - has got squat to do with her complaining about being out of a job. Before she met Angel, Cordy was living in abject poverty - she is now facing that again - that is a pretty serious concern and definitely something worth complaining about. Whilst Buffy is the central character of her own universe, not everything Cordelia does has to be about her. Sometimes she is allowed to think about her own (pretty serious) issues.
Yeah she's being pretty silly when she blames Buffy for Angel being so stupid - it is Angel's fault that he does that and he shouldn't have done but maybe that's just Cordelia showing loyalty to Angel. She doesn't want to blame him for his own stupidity so she pushes it somewhere else. It's not an especially well written scene and exists purely so that Buffy can find out where Angel is - but Cordy has to be sworn to secrecy because if she isn't then ... why didn't Angel just tell Buffy? So we have to have this faux argument for Cordelia to accidentally let the info slip . It is a plot driven rather than character driven moment and so isn't an especially good moment to define anyone's character - however, as she still has massive anxiety about incipient unemployment and homelessness at this point (which wouldn't have happened if Buffy hadn't come to L.A - just like she would never have dated Xander if Buffy hadn't come to Sunnydale) I can understand why her legitimate fear and frustration about real life adult stuff might turn itself on Buffy (also the only other person there so ... who else is she gonna yell at?).

I still think 'calling out' is a harsh word to use for what Doyle does. To me it is a phrase which is much more confrontational (and kind of childish) than anything we see. Rather lovingly making her see she is being a bit ridiculous and then talking that through is more what is happening. As you then link it to one of the reasons he would have been up to working with Buffy, it makes it sound like you think he is siding with Buffy over Cordy - which he would never do.
And no - he doesn't know thing one about Buffy as a person, and whether or not Cordelia has good reason to like/ dislike her. He has had a vision about Angel's past which gave him info on the slayer - but apparently without a visual, as he didn't recognise her from her photo, so he can't have seen that much about her - and he knows Angel is in love with her. (As an aside - I've always been very interested in what an adult character from outside of Sunnydale - so not wrapped up in the histrionics of BAngel - actually thought about a 240 year old man falling in love with a 15 year old girl. Especially as - as a teacher - he would have had a child protection POV that he couldn't shake) He doesn't actually know if she is a good or nice or kind person. He just knows she is the slayer and Angel loves her. He doesn't know what her history with Cordy is. In short - he has no idea of whether Cordelia's animosity is 'unfounded' or not. Hence why he doesn't 'call her out' - he talks her feelings through with her, in a rational, gentle and adult way.

However - this is now way off topic and the staff members will be popping up telling us to stick to the thread title.
 
Top Bottom