Conviction (1)

Episode Report Card
Pilot Light

Cut to a garage full of vintage cars. Let's just assume they're all fitted with the fucking necrotempered glass. And that wherever Angel is going also has a dark garage. Dammit, I knew they were dumping the Angelmobile. Bastards! And despite the whining about how the show has a teeny budget, they've decided it's worthwhile to give Angel a fleet of flashy sports cars. Although if there are some car chases with explosions, I might be a little bit mollified. Angel coos over the cars for a minute, and then heads for, the yellow one. I know nothing about cars, sorry. Hauser suddenly steps out of the shadows to say, "We got word there's a floater you wanted brought in." They're going fishing? Angel doesn't really want any company, but Hauser whines, "Traditionally, my unit handles all the wet work." See, he doesn't know that Angel is a hands-on boss who likes to do his own killin'. Angel insists on going by himself, and heads back to the cars. Both Johanna and I thought it looked as if he was about to get in the passenger side of the red car on his left, but then at the last minute he remembers that he's not in England, so he opens the car door on his right instead.

Angel knocks on the door of Spanky's apartment. An older guy dressed in army surplus merchandise answers gruffly, and Angel explains that he's from Wolfram & Hart. Spanky perks up and says, "Get your butt in here!" and offers Angel a daiquiri. Angel enters and then looks around the apartment while Spanky pours a drink. We finally see that Angel is looking at an extremely large selection of paddles, whips, and floggers. Angel deadpans, "So tell me, why do they call you 'Spanky'?" and Spanky replies, "I'm a big Our Gang fan." I'm so very tired for some reason. You know, jokes, like metaphors, require a delicate touch. Closer to feathers than to paddles, if you see what I mean. Spanky explains that, while he doesn't have anything against the concept, he personally doesn't spank men. Since that line was wedged into the scene with a crowbar, you might suspect that it is setting something up. Let's find out if you're right. Spanky adds, "When you said Wolfram & Hart, I assumed you were here about a mystical job." Angel says that he is, and explains that he wants to know what Spanky did for Fries. Spanky claims "mystic-client privilege," and then Angel makes with the underwhelming threats. I think he's almost as tired as I am. Poor guy. Spanky finally admits that he constructed a mystical vessel for Fries. Angel asks if it could hold a bomb, and Spanky says that's possible: "I don't know what he wanted it for. The vessel just holds it until the magic word dissolves the vessel." Angel asks where Spanky placed the vessel, which is interesting, since there's been no indication that Spanky had to install it like a wall safe. Why couldn't he just deliver it to Fries, and then Fries could have put it wherever he wanted? But wouldn't you know, Angel has jumped to the correct conclusion again, and I guess that's why he's the one running a demonic law firm and I'm not. Or maybe that's why he's the fictional character and I'm not. Wait, I'm not, right? Okay. Where was I? Ah, yes. Spanky reacts to Angel's question by suddenly putting him in a headlock and explaining, "You know what I'm doing now? I'm applying pressure to your windpipe. You'll pass out, and then I'll let Mr. Fries decide if he wants you to wake up again." Angel replies, "Do you know what I'm doing now? Not using my windpipe." I understand that he doesn't need to breathe, "live," but how exactly is he talking? Angel twists Spanky's arm (literally) and Spanky realizes that Angel's a vampire. Angel grabs one of the large paddles and swats Spanky across the room with it, adding, "I have no problem spanking men." Y'know, it's like Whedon watched all of the past season premieres and learned all the wrong lessons from them. "People really liked 'Deep Down,' and that had some kink, so...."

Meanwhile, Gunn sits in a tacky wood-paneled reception area, listening to Muzak. A doctor enters and calls Gunn. Banter about the age of the magazines in the waiting room ensues, and we establish that Gunn has been waiting for five hours. That, just by itself, doesn't seem particularly like something Gunn would do, but maybe he's been beaten down so much that it's hard to really care about what he could be doing instead of sitting there, killing time miserably, just waiting for something even worse to happen. I might be projecting again. Oh, but it's great to know that if Gunn goes missing for a day, the rest of the MoG will notice, but they won't do more than shrug about it. I'd sure trust my life to these people. As Gunn follows the doctor into the office, the doctor asks if he's nervous. Inside, Gunn stares around at a large variety of ugly gadgets and says, "No. Definitely past nervous here." The doctor says that Gunn spoke with "the conduit," and Gunn insists, "That's between me and the big cat." I like how he said that. Very matter-of-fact. The doctor asks Gunn to take off his shirt. And of course, we immediately cut away. I scream, "Bastards!" Now they're just taunting me.

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