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Would Bangel be as beloved if Angel didn't have his own show?

DeadlyDuo

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It's fair to say that Angel's characterisation on Buffy was a bit thin and that he didn't really get fleshed out as a character until he got his own show. If he hadn't gotten his own show and still left at the end of Season 3, would the Bangel ship still be as popular as it is?
 

Octavia

My arse is not pansy!
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Sineya
Yeah I think I would have fallen harder for Bangel if he had stayed on Buffy. Angel the series was a nice bonus but having his character stay on Buffy at least til s5 would have worked very well for me as a fan.

The ship would have remained without Angels series.
 

Mrs Gordo

Bangel extremist...
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Black Thorn
Yes. While I think Angel's show only adds depth to this ship, the couple were iconic from their s2 story and everything after that was just your classic 'will they/won't they' which likely would have continued to be true if Angel had stayed on the show.
 

thetopher

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Sineya
For me personally? Yes I think Angel having his own show made him really interesting away from Buffy and gave him his own struggles and triumphs that proved- at least to me- that he was her equal.
He became the 'other half' of the Buffyverse and fleshed out some more of the world beyond Sunnydale with his own allies, relationships and enemies. That's a huge part of their appeal for me.
They are two epic people with specific destiny's that keep them apart.

But to Bangels? Nope, I feel that the execution of S2 was what did it. The romance and the chemistry and the heartbreak and then the Becoming gut-punch. Whist many may say that DB's performance was a little flat, Sarah's was damn near perfect. She's the reason I (and many others) care.
Even if Angel had never come back from hell it still would've made its mark on the franchise for many of them. It's a really iconic story line and one of the first ones Joss ever imagined, so it has some of his best writing to go along with the acting from the cast.
 
Angel6
Angel6
I think their chemistry is very strong in Season 1 too, the episode Angel is absolutely electric
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Black Thorn
I'm not a bangel fan, but when I had only watched Buffy I didn't care for Angel whatsoever but I didn't hate him just because Buffy loved him. Now I'm not as harsh on Bangel because I don't dislike Angel anymore after watching Angel. So for me, yes I prefer it partially because Angel became a deeper character due to having his own show. I can't speak for other people though.
 

Mylie

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Not for me. Part of why I loved Bangel so much was because of SMG's portrayal and how clear it was for me that Buffy loved him and wanted him. Of course I did love Angel, just not on the same level. The relationship was mostly shown through Buffy's pov and that's what I cared about.

Angel getting his own show allowed me to know the character more, see things from his pov and love the character for who he is, not through Buffy's eyes. It reinforced their love story for me.

And if their story was already iconic because of s2, it became inspirational to see them fight on their own and chose to do what's right. It added a sort of philosophical element to it that makes it a lot more special to me now.
 

Giovanna

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I don't think so. I think that it would have faded throughout the seasons becoming sweet afterthought. Having Angel in his show made it more real, or at least, made it a possibility.
 

Ceadsearc03

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I guess it depends on if he ever returned or guested.

I think it would have been more popular had he stayed and we still learned more about him (especially if they hadn’t gone the Spuffy route.) Probably less if he just left and his character never got more fleshed out - but only to non-Bangel fans. I think true die hard Bangel fans were mostly hooked by the end of S2 and nothing was changing that.
 

Athene

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Bangel wouldn’t be as popular in that case but it would certainly still be iconic and loved. For me, I didn’t become a Bangel fan until I saw Angel and really got to appreciate and fall in love with his character because I agree with @thetopher that it was Sarah (Buffy) that gave Bangel it’s sparkle. You would also need Angel to be a fleshy character after Spike appears on the scene because otherwise it would be hard for Bangel to compete.
 

DeadlyDuo

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Wouldn't there be a point though, if Angel had stayed beyond Season 3, where the relationship would kind of stagnate because it couldn't go anywhere? Angel would still be around so he and Buffy couldn't move on from each other, but neither can they be together because of Angel's curse. With any will they/won't they dynamic, there has to come a point where a decision is made one way or another, a pairing can't stay in that holding pattern indefinitely.

Angel had to physically move away from Buffy for that holding pattern to break; if Angel had hung around for the rest of Buffy's series, at what point would fans say "either have Bangel together or don't but stop with the will they/won't they!"

It's a testament to SMG and DB's chemistry that Bangel is such a believable pairing (and the Angelus arc was probably the best thing to happen to DB since it meant he could actually show he could act) and it's possible Angel may have been fleshed out more on Buffy if he stuck around (and it would hopefully avoid Spuffy), but is Bangel an example of absence makes the heart grow fonder where the ship is remembered more fondly because it was cut short rather than allowed to peter out?

I think @Athene brings up a valid point in regards to Angel needing to be a fleshy character with Spike around. JM plays Spike so brilliantly that the character often steals the scene he's in unless he's matched by an actor/actress of equal calibre. DB needed Angelus to do that because Spike would've just completely walked over Season 1 Angel.

I don't think Angel would've been fleshed out enough on Buffy purely because the show wasn't about him. The Spike flashbacks occur in two episodes but FFL is at Buffy's instigation, the story still revolves around her. Aside from Angelus being cursed with the soul, a lot of the flashbacks we see of Angel have nothing to do with Buffy and would thus not be relevant to use on the show which takes away a lot of Angel's fleshing out.

Does AtS retroactively enhance the Bangel ship?
 

Spanky

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Black Thorn
Bangel wouldn’t be as popular in that case but it would certainly still be iconic and loved.
I dunno. If Angel stayed on the Buffy show I am sure the character would have been ruined in the name of drama and keeping it interesting. By removing Angel it allows Bangel to be stuck in amber, never having to suffer the doldrums of subsequent seasons and bad plots.
 

Athene

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I dunno. If Angel stayed on the Buffy show I am sure the character would have been ruined in the name of drama and keeping it interesting. By removing Angel it allows Bangel to be stuck in amber, never having to suffer the doldrums of subsequent seasons and bad plots.
I thought the question was about if Angel didn’t get a Spin-off but still left in season 3 not if Angel didn’t get a spin-off but continued on Buffy.
 

Spanky

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I thought the question was about if Angel didn’t get a Spin-off but still left in season 3 not if Angel didn’t get a spin-off but continued on Buffy.
I don't think Angel would really be remembered if he were only around for, basically, 2 seasons. Some of the best Bangel moments happened, ironically enough, on Angel.
 
Athene
Athene
I can’t think of any outstanding Bangel moments on Angel but I’m glad you can :)
Angel6
Angel6
Erm I will remember you? I guess you forgot after all ;)

Spanky

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Black Thorn
@Athene What? Are you serious? I Will Remember You and the post-coital ice cream eating?
 
Athene
Athene
It was sweet and everything but I wouldn’t put it under the greatest Bangel moments.

Ceadsearc03

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@Athene What? Are you serious? I Will Remember You and the post-coital ice cream eating?
Agree. Pretty much all of IWRY. And there were several other moments, even small ones, that just really drove home how much I loved Bangel, and how much they loved each other, personally. (“The woman I love is dead,” etc.)

But yeah IWRY was basically a love story to Bangel (with a rather unhappy ending.)
 

FaithLehane16

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Yeah I think I would have fallen harder for Bangel if he had stayed on Buffy. Angel the series was a nice bonus but having his character stay on Buffy at least til s5 would have worked very well for me as a fan.
I think that would be better than to have him leave in Graduation Day Pt. 2. I would like to think that Angel would've been fledged out more if he'd stay on for 2 more seasons.
 

Leo

"Mist... cemetery... Halloween. Should end well."
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Doubtful. Buffy would have had other romantic interests (even if it weren't Riley or Spike). Bangel would be a nice story from the past. Remember that we had 5 more seasons and Angel somehow appears in all of them, making it real.
 

CHK DeWilSon

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I think that the majority of us that still love BAngel would feel the same way regardless of Angel staying on Buffy for longer

I adore BAngel from the moment they met and the hints they keep on giving in the first series until the reveal of Angel in the episode 'Angel' and from the end of that episode I was hooked. The second series just elevated it and the emergence of Angelus solidify it.

So even in some ways I would have love for Angel to be on Buffy and continue to watch the ups and downs of their relationship, I can now see that he left at the right time for the both of them to grow as characters and experience different relationships.

And in my eyes, Angel became more develop in his character because of the separation and grew even more as a equal partner to Buffy despite them not being together.

As for IWRY, I'm grateful for that episode even with the bittersweet ending. It wasn't just about them being free to enjoy each other in their lovemaking without that pesky curse rearing its ugly head but just the joyous moments of them eating and holding each other in their bliss. I don't think this episode will ever mean that much or even be look upon as a special and epic episode unless you (still) love Buffy and Angel as a couple.
I also feel like the BAngel fans got that episode because of the heartbreak of 'Surprise' and it sure help me to see how it could be for them. It's just such a shame of course that Buffy doesn't remember especially in my case when she died, was in heaven and came back. Ah well...
 
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