William’s Review – 2.07 “Darla”

The Good

The use of flashbacks in this episode was great. It’s the best we’ve gotten from the show thus far and it really helped give a texture to the complicated relationship that is Darla and Angel/Angelus. Giving us the insight into Darla’s psychology really helped the audience understand her character. Yes, she’s psychotic, but at least we know why now. Having these flashbacks really built up to her telling Angel she wanted to be turned. She really does see being a vampire as a gift and it’s the only life she’s ever known. I found her struggle for identity to work nicely. She’s always identified herself through her choose companion. She doesn’t remember herself as a human, she was subservient with the master, the “whirlwind” with Angelus, Now she doesn’t know what she is. I thought the scene with Lindsey in which she questions this summed up this beautifully. I also really liked Lindsey’s response of “Both. Neither.” Simply put sums up her character as well as Angel’s.

This episode did a lot of the little things well. Most of these coming in the form of little remarks from our background characters. I thought Gunn added a lot to the episode. I’m glad he was able to solve how to find Darla. He was the jokey self that I like. As long as he is contributing and adding something to the group I will continue to greatly enjoy his inclusion. Another particular scene that jumped out at me was the way Cordelia seems hurt by Angel when she says “You’re not alone.” I also laughed at her suggestion to “take big whiffs.” I know it was silly and dumb, but it generally caught me off guard. There were multitudes of other things like Drusilla being psychopathic, but still having a bit of dark comedy with the bit about Angelus being cross with them if they had a mass slaughter without him. Overall the episode continued to get little emotions out of me with just little touches.

That end scene though. It took the cake for me. So see favorite moment.

The Bad

About the only thing was Angelus’s bad wig and equally bad accent. But that’s nothing new. Also was the slo-mo walk always that long? Maybe the Buffy verison is shorter. How majestic was Angelus’s hair in the wind though?

The Unknown

So what is Holland’s master plan? He seems to have forseen exactly how this is going to playout. I do hope his involvement is building to something, because so far he’s been one of the best things about Wolfram and Hart.

Favorite Moment

“You damned me.” I thought this episode built up so nicely to that moment. Both from the prospect of Darla saying she wanted to be turned and Angel feeling the full weight of Darla’s so called gift. This scene is shot very well. I love how the music turns slightly to the creepy Darla theme and how the camera was shot. It gave you that sense of spiraling out of control. It was the most emotional moment of the episode by far.

Bottom Line

This built off of what we’d seen in “Dear Boy” and was the best use of flashbacks we’ve gotten. I’ll admit that I’m a sucker for flashbacks and this got me. Ultimately nothing “big” happened, no grand consequence. But I thought getting insight into Darla and her relationship with Angel/Angelus was a nice exploration. This episode did one of the things I’m always looking for which is access my emotions. So…

Score: 79 out of 100

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