Monday, October 12, 2009

Night Mission

I did a post recently, "Through the Looking Glass, or, Welcome to My Nightmare", where I speculated about the intriguing possibilities of being able to step back and forth between our version of reality and the alternate reality as shown within the Angel series. I was delighted to see recently how Angel himself discussed this concept in the extremely well-acted closing scene of Season 1's "In the Dark", which was the episode where Spike had Angel tortured in order to make him reveal the location of the Ring of Amarra.

Angel had the chance to live like a human if he continued to wear the ring. Instead, he wore it just so he could enjoy a few hours of sunlight, then smashed the ring just as the sun was setting. Logically, Angel would have revealed that he destroyed the ring because he would have been a target for Spike and other vampires as long as he had it in his possession. Instead, the writers gave us:
Doyle: So what, you don't get the ring because your period of self-flagellation isn't over yet? I mean, think of all the daytime people you could help between 9 and 5.

Angel: They have help. The whole world is designed for them, so much that they have no idea what goes on around them after dark. They don't see the weak ones lost in the night, or the things that prey on them. And if I join them, maybe I'd stop seeing, too.
Would Angel really stop seeing vampires and demons if he became a 9 to 5 guy? I doubt that, but he did fear he could potentially lose sight of the mission. That scene with Doyle on the rooftop is also an example of how Angel was far more than some broody guy trying to atone for the guilt of murdering so many innocent victims. He truly seemed passionately devoted to the cause of helping the hopeless, even to the point where he couldn't imagine himself living any other way. Perhaps the gypsy curse restoring Angel's soul provided an unexpected beneficial side effect.

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