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Does S5 become too much The Angel and Spike show?

CHK DeWilSon

A BAngel fan. Always.
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An interesting question which I wonder depends on how a certain character is viewed because with it having Angel as the title of the show, I'm not sure that his character is the issue for me.

I'll be watching this series/season on E4 when it arrives to actually see if there was too much of the Angel and Spike show as I've heard that Spike wasn't in as many episodes and scenes as the likes of Wesley or Fred/Illyra so then maybe the problem is that Spike's popularity pushes out the importance of the longstanding characters and their arcs.

There was from my point a balance for all the other main characters in having equally the spotlight on them throughout the individual series/season but even with the major issues that Wesley, Fred and Gunn were going through, the main focus for most in that Spike was there and I actually resent his character for this and that is why I wish that it wasn't felt by certain PTB that needed for what turn out to be the final series/season because the character coming on board didn't save the show in the end.

I did not enjoy how Angel acted in regards to him and Spike and their individual relationships with Buffy because it wasn't funny watching Angel regress to some teenage boy competing for the girl. 🙄

And even if there wasn't as much storylines for the love triangle, they did put too much time and storytelling into the love triangle when SMG ended up not appearing in the series and it was just another story of another love triangle which ATS had become the series for since series two!

As a Angel fan, I am/was interested in his ongoing journey as well as his AI team and Connor and for me, Spike coming on board, being elevated to 2nd lead, just felt like the others were being diminished which happened IMO in series 6 & 7 of BTVS.

It just didn't feel organic for him to be around given his true relationship with Angel and was just forced on because of Spike being a well loved and it not actually making real sense for him to be around.

So Spike was push to the forefront and into a bromance with Angel though for me that was never their relationship even when they were together with Darla and Drusilla. Because the comics have definitely shown that this was a fleeting time for them.

Being two soulled vampires means nothing for me as their journeys to it but also what it means for them as individuals is what make me gravitate towards one plus I prefer the relationship and genuine friendships Angel had with Gunn and Wesley in particular given the continuous changes they went through with all happened.

But it is what it is.
 

DeadlyDuo

Scooby
Joined
Jul 29, 2016
Messages
9,611
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31
I wonder if the likes of Spike and Faith just work better as supporting characters not leads.

I think they do work better in a supporting role where you want to see more of them rather than as a lead. There is more freedom in being a supporting character whereas lead characters tend to be more constricted eg A lead will always have romance drama and be part of a love triangle (either in show or in terms of shipping). A supporting character can more or less have a happy healthy relationship.

I wish that it wasn't felt by certain PTB that needed for what turn out to be the final series/season because the character coming on board didn't save the show in the end.

I believe it was said somewhere that Angel only got a season 5 on the proviso that Spike was brought on board. It's possible there may have been a Season 6 if Whedon hadn't tried pushing so hard for an early renewal.
 
B
Btvs fan
Spike and a lighter look for the show and back to more stand alone episodes

Btvs fan

Scooby
Joined
Feb 11, 2019
Messages
1,589
Age
39
An interesting question which I wonder depends on how a certain character is viewed because with it having Angel as the title of the show, I'm not sure that his character is the issue for me.

I'll be watching this series/season on E4 when it arrives to actually see if there was too much of the Angel and Spike show as I've heard that Spike wasn't in as many episodes and scenes as the likes of Wesley or Fred/Illyra so then maybe the problem is that Spike's popularity pushes out the importance of the longstanding characters and their arcs.

There was from my point a balance for all the other main characters in having equally the spotlight on them throughout the individual series/season but even with the major issues that Wesley, Fred and Gunn were going through, the main focus for most in that Spike was there and I actually resent his character for this and that is why I wish that it wasn't felt by certain PTB that needed for what turn out to be the final series/season because the character coming on board didn't save the show in the end.

I did not enjoy how Angel acted in regards to him and Spike and their individual relationships with Buffy because it wasn't funny watching Angel regress to some teenage boy competing for the girl. 🙄

And even if there wasn't as much storylines for the love triangle, they did put too much time and storytelling into the love triangle when SMG ended up not appearing in the series and it was just another story of another love triangle which ATS had become the series for since series two!

As a Angel fan, I am/was interested in his ongoing journey as well as his AI team and Connor and for me, Spike coming on board, being elevated to 2nd lead, just felt like the others were being diminished which happened IMO in series 6 & 7 of BTVS.

It just didn't feel organic for him to be around given his true relationship with Angel and was just forced on because of Spike being a well loved and it not actually making real sense for him to be around.

So Spike was push to the forefront and into a bromance with Angel though for me that was never their relationship even when they were together with Darla and Drusilla. Because the comics have definitely shown that this was a fleeting time for them.

Being two soulled vampires means nothing for me as their journeys to it but also what it means for them as individuals is what make me gravitate towards one plus I prefer the relationship and genuine friendships Angel had with Gunn and Wesley in particular given the continuous changes they went through with all happened.

But it is what it is.

He did save the show. Season 4 was originally going to be the last season. Even the cast and crew at the time thought that (see Vincent Karthiser interview) and the WB only agreed very last minute to giving it another year on the Provisio that they would get popular character Spike in, and basically a soft reboot with the show having a lighter look (filtered windows) and back to the original more stand alone stories (which was ditched in the second half of the season)
Season 5 (this according to David Fury) was only cancelled due to Joss pushing for renewal early, that the Execs felt backed into a corner and so cancelled it. The irony there was that only happened due to the late renewal last year and Joss wanted give his Cast and Crew safe notice.

Sarah Michelle Gellar was also meant to show up for E12 the hundredth episode but it fell through. Fury says Joss was angry at this amd you can kind of see it on the DVD overview about him coldly speaking on TGIQ (no she was never coming back for this) "she's moved on and so should we"
She did offer to come back for the Finale but Joss said no as he felt it would detract from the cast and there story . I agree with that. Angel showing up then leaving in Chosen felt awkward on BtVS.
The flip side is that got Cordelia back and gave the character closure rather than just have her stuck in a coma.
 

Jodast

Lapsed BBer
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975
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London UK
Sineya
If I remember correctly, the network'basically demanded that season 5 be The Angel and Spike Show or they would not greenlight the season.
 

Btvs fan

Scooby
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Messages
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39
If I remember correctly, the network'basically demanded that season 5 be The Angel and Spike Show or they would not greenlight the season.

I doubt they said make it the Angel and Spike show just that they wanted Spike, a popular character, on the show. As said earlier Whedon initially only had Spike as a reoccurring role but it was James who wanted regular full time work or nothing.
 

Stake fodder

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I get it. I like Spike and enjoyed him becoming a full cast member for this season. He does have important history with Angel. But I think there's too much of him and Angel dominating episodes to point where you sometimes forget there's other establish characters who had been apart of Angel the show much longer than Spike. In Why We Fight (which I think is a boring episode anyway) it feels like Wes, Gunn and Fred could have just taken a episode off their just used as stakes at the end. Spike being around also leads to more flashbacks, like Angel the show needed more of those right? There's a lot of good stuff with Spike this season, but some it feels like filler which doesn't add a great deal.
I agree with you, in the topic question and in the equivocation. I also liked that Spike was on the show, but it did seem to become the "Angel and Spike" show after a while. Not only that, but the writers took a while to figure out what to do with Spike. For several of the early episodes, he mostly was in one or two scenes only to be a thorn in Angel's side, just sort of stuck in where he didn't need to be.

After he's re-corporealized, he becomes a more integrated member of the team, but I agree that it's at the diminishment of the other members. I think there was more to explore about Gunn's "giving into the dark side" to receive and then retain his legal knowledge, and certainly more about Illyria's development and her relationship with Wes. But there wasn't enough time for these.

I do like flashbacks, though, so I was glad that Spike's presence gave a justification for some with Angel.

It just didn't feel organic for him to be around given his true relationship with Angel and was just forced on because of Spike being a well loved and it not actually making real sense for him to be around.
I think this sums it up. It never really made sense that "the fool for love" would not go running off to Buffy, whatever his qualms were. And it didn't make sense that he'd stick around with Angel initially, though I could see it once Spike realized the real fight was there at W&H, since he really did see himself as a champion by then. As I said, I liked Spike being on the show. He added "much-needed sarcasm" and interesting stories, it just never quite gelled, in my opinion.
 

Nothing13

Potential
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For me, season 5 wasn't "the Angel and Spike show" but "the dumb show of Angel and Spike" where Angel and Spike were represented as 2 immature idiots.
Also, for me, their behavior in relation to Buffy doesn't make sense.

1) Spike regressed to his idiotic comic relief personality of seasons 4-5-6 of Buffy without consistency to his development of season 7: the way he treated Harmony, considered Buffy as a "trophy" and talked about her. It seems like the events of season 7 and the emotional/personal development generated by the soul weren't realistically lived by the character and returned to his possessive idiotic behavior of seasons 4-5-6 (not his "original personality" of season 2)
Also, like you said It never really made sense that he didn't return to Buffy.

2) Angel became more childish and immature, and it didn't make any sense considering all the things and events he has gone through his unlife.
-In Chosen, he was behaving like an immature "12 years old boy" in relation to Buffy-Spike after all the mess of Cordelia-Connor: Cordelia was in a coma and his son Connor just tried suicide. He was more mature in the early seasons of Buffy and the early seasons of Angel.
-In season 3 of Buffy, he was the mature one that took the decision of ending their "problematic relationship" for her good and left the town in order to let her live her life
-In season 1 of Angel, he was the one that renounced the possibility of returning human and having a "normal relationship and life with her" for her safety and the "greater good"
Now he is an immature idiot that doesn't want to let her have her life and he is continuously jealous of her sentimental life: judging her, following her, sending people to spy on her, etc. Pathetic
He also has a new relationship with Nina as a rebound girl; he basically admits it in TGIQ: At least I have a girlfriend. Still... referring to Nina, after he thought that Buffy was gone.

Also in Angel's season 5 and in the end of both shows, writers didn't care anymore about the story from a coherent point of view (they only cared about rating and money).
They tried to please a little all shippers (Spuffy/Bangel and Cangel with the return of Cordelia in episode 12) and at the same time mocked fans and shippers.
The Girl in Question was a mockery of shippers putting Angel and Spike as idiots (and Bangel and Spuffy fans too) continuously talking about nothing for years and ridiculizing important moments (like Angel that ridicule when Buffy killed him in season 2)
 
T
thrasherpix
In addition to this, I'm reminded from a vid I posted on urban fantasy about how "shipping is there to ruin the plot."

Dora

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As I understand it was either Masters or Dusku who were considered? I might have that wrong. I can see the logic in it being Masters and not Dusku (think her arc was done at that point and it was fitting she ended up back on Buffy to complete her arc). I just wish they dialed some of the Spike-Angel stuff down a bit.
I read the autobiography of the channel once, or at least the bit that interested me it was about the end of Angel and Spikes involvement , there it was said that the studio wanted Willow because she had done so well previously, but it was Whedon that insisted on Spike, the studio was concerned about the male/ female balance, whedon said put Amy Acker in a very short dress nobody will notice. The cancellation totally down to Whedon pressurising them for a early take up he left them with no option, it stated that it would have been taken up for another season in normal circumstances and that they regret cancelling it . Ironic on two parts one was the final and no SMG, she took a lot of criticism with a lot of people calling her a bitch for not doing it when she was available Whedon did not want her claiming that she would take away from the regular cast , no such problems introducing Spike , secondly SMG told Whedon at the start of S7 that she would not be renewing her contract, he told nobody and when it came out in a interview later that she would be leaving she again received abuse about not telling anybody, then he try's to get a early renewal for Angel
Season 8 was planned SMG wanted to ok the scripts beforehand which was not for coming
Dusku was asked if she was interested in taking up the role but declined because JW would not be the main show runner
 

Mr Trick

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Another thing about this is I can understand them bringing Spike on board to save the show from being canned. But once he's on board they could have still reduced his role/had him more as a supporting character. You have to remember that at this point not including flashback scenes Spike had been in a total of 1 episode of Angel. The likes of Fred, Gunn and Wes had been core characters for a good amount of the show. That's my problem those characters being sidetracked while all the focus is on Angel and Spike. Why We fight is a good example of this. Wes, Fred and Gunn's main purpose of the episode is to be kidnapped while we play flashback with Angel and Spike. Also Angel and Spike fighting over that stupid cup was silly. I like the stuff with Fred and Spike. Because its a good character beat for Spike and it doesn't sidetrack or damage Fred as a character.
 

Dora

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Another thing about this is I can understand them bringing Spike on board to save the show from being canned. But once he's on board they could have still reduced his role/had him more as a supporting character. You have to remember that at this point not including flashback scenes Spike had been in a total of 1 episode of Angel. The likes of Fred, Gunn and Wes had been core characters for a good amount of the show. That's my problem those characters being sidetracked while all the focus is on Angel and Spike. Why We fight is a good example of this. Wes, Fred and Gunn's main purpose of the episode is to be kidnapped while we play flashback with Angel and Spike. Also Angel and Spike fighting over that stupid cup was silly. I like the stuff with Fred and Spike. Because its a good character beat for Spike and it doesn't sidetrack or damage Fred as a character.
Mmmm never watched Angel but core characters being side tracked to promote Spike , I wonder where I have heard that before
 

Spanky

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Black Thorn
core characters being side tracked
Core characters that literally had nothing left in their tank. By the end of season 4 the show was gagging for a soft reboot. You can only play love triangles and jilted lovers so long before it gets boring and played out... season 4 took a wrecking ball (and not the miley cyrus version) to the show.

So I've no problem with some of the "core" characters being sidetracked. Long time coming says I. And the fact we get Spike added to the mix is just an extra bonus.
 

Faded90

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Core characters that literally had nothing left in their tank. By the end of season 4 the show was gagging for a soft reboot. You can only play love triangles and jilted lovers so long before it gets boring and played out... season 4 took a wrecking ball (and not the miley cyrus version) to the show.

So I've no problem with some of the "core" characters being sidetracked. Long time coming says I. And the fact we get Spike added to the mix is just an extra bonus.
I’m not a particular fan of Spike but I think you make a good point regarding the other characters. They kind of dug them all into huge holes by the end of S4 to the point they basically have to retcon 2 seasons. I think they definitely needed to shake up the cast and dynamics. Even Angel felt like he was on a bit of a merry go round of saminess
 
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