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Question Was Season 4 really that bad?

Wesxfred

You know what they say about payback...
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I want to start off by saying that I get why some people hate this season. The whole Cordelia thing is terrible and it ruins her character for me, but I would probably say the this Is my favourite season of either show *GASP* Ikr! I'm gonna tell you a few reasons why and feel free to comment x

1. Halleluja! Angelus is back and he's ready to stir up some sh*t! Hell Yes! This was a long time coming and I love this whole storyline. He really feels like a threat and he's sooooooo creepy. The way he plays with everyone's emotions is seriously scary and I would go as far as to say that I like him more than Angel! And he's in what, like 5 episodes? MaStErFuL! His relationship with Connor and Faith are also so cool to watch.
2. Love is in the air with Fred Wes and Gunn. (Well, I guess not Wes and Gunn, unless Jasmine's line 'You both have the same love. It should bring you closer together ' Is meant to be interpreted in a different way if you know what I mean.) Anyway, Angelus is spilling all the tea (oops) and one thing leads to another and then FRED AND WESLEY KISS!!! I love the angst and the romance in this season and all the actors are so great! Its very Othello like, just as Angelus surmised.
3. Can we just take a minute to remember spin the bottle. F*cking hilarious! A season this dark really needed a trademark funny episode and can we just appreciate the contrast between the dark, broody Wes to Dorky Head Boy Wes! It was so great to see people revert back to what they once were and it was really interesting to compare it to what they are now. The government gave Cordy bad hair! WHAT!? Fred was an addict! WHAT!? There's a loud, scary new gang of demons who have headlights and wheels! WHAT!? Poor little Liam.
4. Fred actually gets to show that she's more than just a love interest. The Magic bullet episode was a really great move for Fred's character arc. There she is surrounded by her friends all happy and at peace. Then BAM! Fred on the run! Fred with a plan! Fred with a gun instead of a Gunn! Loved her story!
5.Lilah morgan is f*cking badass. Not only is she the freaking boss of Wolfram and Hart, but she's actually good at it, unlike the two misogynistic old guys who were so dull. Her quotes this season are great, her angsty relationship with Wes is great, her one-liners are great. Lilah Morgan is on Fire! And thank god she got rid of those awful bangs!!!
6. Faith. No explanation is needed.
 
Puppet
Puppet
Agreed. My favorite season, too (though not of both shows, Buffy S5 wins that one) :D
Feigenbunny
Feigenbunny
this season is probably my least favouurite. As you said, the whole cordy issue sucks and its a shame that this is her last full season cuz she was a great character otherwise

Tank1978

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This season has real highs and lows for me.

Deep down is possibly my favourite Opening episode of any season. I'm not totally sold on the next 3 episodes and I don't particularly like the Cordy memory loss storyline either.

From episode 5-16 I really like this run of episodes apart from the cordy/Connor bits and evil cordy bits, especially Orpheus. However I'm really not a fan of Jasmine so for me this season falls off a bit of a cliff at the end.

I love Wesley's arc in this season and also how he returns to the team. I really like Lilah and she is really good in this season, I love they way she kills off Linwood to get the top job.

"You went over my head to the senior partners?"

"No, just under it actually"

Despite the decent run of episodes though and the positives mentioned, I really hate how they destroy Cordelia. She was my favourite character in Angel up to her leaving with the Groosalug in S3, but although she wasn't as snappy, sharp or energetic when she returned in late S3 what they did to her in S4 was awful.

Overall not my least favourite season of Angel, but not my favourite either, but had some great episodes and I liked the Beast. Also loved that we got both Faith and Willow.
 
Wesxfred
Wesxfred
Yeah, putting Faith and Willow in this season was really good !!

Feigenbunny

Master of Chaos
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i really didnt like this season if I'm honest.
It would be better if they didn't have the creepy Connor < Cordelia > Angel thing cuz she was literally his surrogate mother. i hate connor. i guess the whole love triangle thing isn't for me cuz i cant stand Wesley and Gunn fighting over Fred like she is some sort of prize. I hate how she doesn't do anything about it and just lets things get worse and worse until they both physically fight for her affections. Seriously girl make a dam decision cuz its not fair to either gun or Wes to be leading them on like this. I usually like Fred a lot but this season she just feels like a reason for more tension in the group
i do however like spin the bottle but other than that, this season dosent really have anything going for it apart from a few appearances by gwen faith and willow. Also jasmine is the worst villain and the way they defeat her is stupid and have i mentioned that i hate connor?
 
Wesxfred
Wesxfred
Totally opposite to me then! haha

thrasherpix

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I liked season 4 a lot...but a lot more the first time when I didn't know what was going to happen next (a lot of WTF endings that had me impatient for the next ep).

Generally, what the OP says...I loved Fred in Magic Bullet and how she was smart enough to use a bullet to break the spell over Angel (and the creepy scenes like the burning man saying he loves her, and the delicious irony of the conspiracy guy being a Jasmine fanatic).

I did love Spin the Bottle, and much prefer it to BTVS: Tabula Rasa.

Even some Christians have noted that Revelations is a horror story, and that it almost sounds as if a returned Jesus is more warlike than peaceful...Jasmine manifested that (though I'm aware most see her as closer to an antichrist figure). Her creating a "body of Jasmine" out of many others was one of the more haunting things about it, especially how much she seemed to love it. And clever about the blood, including Cordy's (and Connor being immune to Jasmine's power and the cure). Though there were elements from other mythologies as well, and I liked how they played together.

Body snatcher movies have a special appeal to me (so do zombie flicks, and we do get that one episode that is more than that). While the resolution seemed anticlimactic to me, I did enjoy what came up before, and then how Team Angel is rewarded by the Senior Partners for it, a twist just as disturbing as Jasmine and really to ask the question of which was the greater evil.


This is my favorite Lilah season (and her complicated relationship with Wesley), and I did love the Beast (though that plays into other parts). And at first I didn't think I was going to like the Beast as he seemed so stereotypical and more like a dumb thug, like someone who does guard duty in Hell rather than rule it, but I quickly changed my mind.

What I didn't care for was the Gunn/Fred/Wes love triangle. That grated on me. (That said, I did like in a non-romantic way that Wesley had more respect for Fred's choice than Gunn in Supersymmetry. Generally speaking, I much prefer Gunn to Wes, but Gunn really got on my nerves that ep while Wesley was a relief, something I never really saw coming. I still didn't ship any of them in any meaningful way.)

I'm one of the few who doesn't have a problem with the Pseudo-Cordy and Connor bit, not in that I approved of it, but that it fit the story. I saw both Cordelia and Connor as victims. Cordy was manipulated and made to suffer until she was honed for possession by Jasmine, and then Connor (also manipulated into being) was then used to complete the process. While Pylea toughened him up in many ways, he obviously had no real social experience, and it wouldn't surprise me if he never saw a female before making his way back to Earth. His reactions to Pseudo-Cordy's cruel manipulations were hard to watch sometimes because it was hurting him in a way demons never could, but it added tension. (The one part that does bother me is the rumor that this wasn't the original plan, but was made into this as a way to punish the actress because she got pregnant, but that's "behind the scenes" rather than the story itself.)

I liked Darla's spirit trying to pull Connor away from Pseudo-Cordy. I didn't care for Angel treating Connor as a rival (and arguably more petty than Connor himself) rather than as someone in need of protection, realizing that something was very wrong. I only JUST BARELY excuse him because in the century he was raised in, those Connor's (and Buffy's--and just glad that he seems to have more of a blonde fetish than a "school girl in short skirt sucking lollipops" thing :p ) age were considered adults, so he'd automatically perceive such things differently than someone born in the late 20th century on, but he still should've had more sense. As former Angelus, he of all people would have to recognize a mind game (and perhaps see some of Darla's tricks being used by Pseudo-Cordelia when they were vampires together). That is, despite that Liam/Angel was born when Connor's age was pretty much that of an adult, he still should've known better.

Speaking of Angelus...it just wasn't the same as in BTVS...but it was fine when he was in a cage. I didn't care for his portrayal when he escaped, but the resolution with Faith helping did make up for that in my book. (And Faith is a bit like Oz to me in that I liked both characters, but thought both were overrated...but I came to love Faith in this season. And some vicious fun as Wes and Faith seem to trade places as who the ruthless psycho is.)

So yeah, that's my take. Not my favorite, but I seem to like it a lot more than others do, and there are some parts I really do love...but in some cases I love (at least enjoy) the parts that turn others off, or dislike what many see as one of its few redeeming values. And it will never be as good on repeat viewings as it was the first time I watched it.
 

Feigenbunny

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@Wesxfred your relpy to my earlier comment: i guess so. im just not generally into angel as much as buffy overall. This season is really dark and I think that the two shows did better with their quick little one liners. The humor in season4 isnt that great if I'm honest apart from Lilah (Shes amazing as always) and a few little jokes here and there. Its just a shame that this season focuses more on the tragedy. However, I do really like spin the bottle and I agree with you onn that.

I still hate connor though.
 
Wesxfred
Wesxfred
Ok : )

Faded90

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I think continuity and characterisation just went completely out of the window this season and they just made it up as they went along. Cinematically there’s some great scenes but it seems more about making things EPIC and flash than a plot that made sense

Cordy is at least excusable in that it’s NOT Cordy,so I can actually ignore that one but Angel seeing her having sex with his deeply disturbed son and acts like a jealous teenager rather than the intelligent man he’s supposed to be. He never once questions that this is so OOC for Cordy, not necessarily in a possessed way but in a ‘depressed, existential crisis S6 Buffy way’ nor is he concerned that she’s taken advantage of his deeply disturbed almost feral at times son.

Possessed Cordy makes no sense because she is nothing like Jasmine and doesn’t talk like Jasmine. The whole season feels very random. Why was Angelus important?

Angelus is ridiculous, this isn’t the quiet sinister Angelus we’ve had before in Buffy S2 or even pretend Angelus in Enemies/Eternity. This is S3 Dork!Angel but evil. If this Angelus was in S2 I think Buffy may have staked him earlier in complete annoyance 😂

This might be an unpopular opinion but I thought Willow was completely OOC for where she was currently at in Buffy. It felt like just like the rest of this season they didn’t care about continuity as long as they could get some crazy scenes in there. Willow at this point is subdued, scared of using powerful magic and terrified of going evil again, then she pops up in Orpheus and is cracking jokes about being evil, is happy bubbly Willow and using powerful magic without a care in the world. I found it very jarring with S7 Willow

The Jasmine arc felt tagged on, plus it had the whole ‘wait so their entire lives have been building up to THIS?!’it also ends so anticlimactically when Connor punches her and we’ll thats it really
 

AlphaFoxtrot

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No. I watched it live, when it first aired, and it was amazing. The Beast was awesome. Evil Cordie was intriguing. The rumors were off the charts. Do you know what it's like to pick up a fanzine, and see "Season 4: Angelus and Faith Return!" Or to see a villain Angel and the Gang couldn't beat in one episode? Or read analysis or the end of Wolfram & Hart? Until "Inside Out." That's when it became clear, this wasn't leading to a big Buffy Crossover, all the stuff, all the big swerves, weren't really leading to anything. It was just another ME Big Bad. All the cryptic nonsense they tried to bamboozle us over the last four years was dead. It was this weird Jasmine plot, that came out of nowhere, and ended with, a beheaded alien and a quick death. And then the Mother of All Reset Buttons. So, looking back, yeah, it doesn't pay off your investment, and it's why Angel basically had a soft Archer style reboot in Season 5. I don't hate it, I think trying to do a story like that was pretty risky in 2003.

So basically, they destroyed four years of plot development because one of Joss's friends needed a job.

I
 
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