William’s Review – 1.15 “The Prodigal”
I enjoyed the flashbacks we got with Angel, bad wigs and all. It’s always fascinating dealing with characters with such a long back period. Getting insight into Angel or Angelus’s origins was nice. I’m also glad that while it used scenes from Buffy S2 Becoming Part 2 it was still able to be fresh and add new scenes to keep fans of both shows invested. Having Darla show up again was equally as enjoyable to watch. I particularly like her last speech to Angel about how who they were as humans influence what kind vampire they are. It was a different perspective than what we’ve had from the “watcher” side of things. It puts a fascinating spin on the vampire lore as we get to see from the vampires perspective.
The death of Kate’s father was a standout moment for me. Angel being stuck in the hallway unable to help was once again showing our hero failing. I thought it was dark and interesting in how this will progress the story going forward. Kate not being told what her father was into when Angel had the chance to say something will clearly put a wedge in their relationship.
This episode had a lot of things that held it back for me. For one it didn’t feel like it had a very cohesive bond that was tying this episode together. They were definitely trying to draw some parallels with Angel’s daddy issues and Kate’s daddy issues. Signified visually with the “Beloved” Tombstones. But I didn’t know if there was anything really deeper than that.
While I buy Kate’s reluctances to believe in the supernatural, as a viewer that’s already bought into this world it did come across as kind of annoying. I’m not sure there was a winning scenario here, but it did bother me while I was watching. Kate’s standoff-ish behavior also did no favors for me liking the character. As it was once we saw Kate sobbing over her dead father I didn’t feel very connected to the moment. I had sympathy for her, but not much emotion in her loss.
The demon side to this story was pretty weak. I initially thought the vampires in suits were involved with Wolferman Hart in some way alas I was wrong. Also what was the point of having the “super demon.” It didn’t had anything to the threat level and he was dispatch very quickly. I would preferred at least a fight with him if they are going to set him up.
With Kate’s entire world being turned upside down how will she respond? It’s very possible that we are in for some dark stories with Kate. I do like seeing Angel and Kate seemingly going in opposite directions and am interested in where their interaction is going to go now.
Also is Angel into Kate or not? It seems like the show is continually trying to hint at that with other characters commenting on it. I have yet to feel any chemistry between them or see any response from Angel that shows him reciprocating her feelings.
Will we continue to get these kinds of flashbacks for Angel’s past?
Angel being stuck in the door way unable to help Trevor Lockley.
While I liked a lot of the little things here, I just didn’t connect with it emotionally. It was good to get more of Angel’s back story and continue to progress Kate’s character, but there were also plenty of little flaws that dragged the score down.
Score: 63 out of 100