All Along The Watchtower

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Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Best moments from the WB

Last night while using the elipitical trainer at the Y, I was skimming an Entertainment Weekly. It was the issue with Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn on the cover talking about their relationship and their new movie.

In the magazine, there was an article about the best moments and/or shows from the soon-to-be departed WB network. Included in there were Shannon Dougherty leaving Charmed, the rise of Popular, the Pippi Longstocking moment from Gilmore Girls, the premiere of Smallville and the teen phenomenon that was Dawson's Creek (oh heaven help me, I watched it the first year or so....but only cause it was on after the brilliance that is Buffy).

Anyway, the ultimate, number one best moment or show from the WB was, of course, "The Becoming, Part 2" from Buffy the Vampire Slayer's brilliant second season. For those of you who don't know Buffy eps by title alone, "Becoming Part 2" is the second half of the genius season-two finale where Xander confesses his love to Willow, Buffy reveals her secret identity to her mom and Buffy saves the world, but at the price of sending Angel to a hell dimension after his soul is restored by a spell from Willow. (Did I mention she stabs him with a sword?!?) It ends with that sad, sad Sarah McLaughlin song as Buffy leaves town on a bus.

Brilliance...utter brilliance.

OK, I'm getting choked up just thinking about it...

But while the list was good, there was one show conspicious in its absence--and wouldn't you know it, it was also from the genius that is Joss Whedon.

No mention of Angel. None, nothing, nada. The spin-off of Buffy that emerged from the gaint shadow of Buffy and was fantastic in its own right. Of course, part of it may be that since Angel was one long story arc, it's harder to pick a single episode or moment from the show as defining...but here are a few I thought of:
  • Season three's mid-season cliffhanger. "Sleep Tight". Angel went on hiatus for a few weeks, ending with an episode that had a betrayal, a kidnapping and left the fate of several characters in question. And it left our hero at a crossroads that it would take the rest of the third and fourth seasons to really resolve. It definitely made for a long six week wait for the next new episode. Best thing: Joss Whedon didn't disappoint when the show came back (as if he could).
  • Season one's "Hero." Nine episodes into his spin-off, Joss Whedon does the unthinkable and kills off one of his trio of regulars. Now whether this was planned from the beginning or was becuase star Glenn Quinn was difficult to work with on set, I'm not sure. But this episode alone established that nothing was safe or sacred on the also set the stage for Alexis Denisof to enter the show as Wesley Wyndham Pryce, a move that proved to be genius.
  • The series finale, "Not Fade Away" Yes, the series was cut short in what may be, arguably, it's best season. But thankfully the WB told the cast and crew in time so they could do a proper finale. "Not Fade Away" was briliant in that it did everything it needed to, but left you wanting more. It wasn't the end, just a turning of a page...and it was brilliant. Brilliant, I tell you.
Those are just a few of the many great Angel moments. I could throw in the whole season four Jasmine arc and the Angel's descent into darkness from season two, but it's hard to narrow it down to a single episode or moment in those. Also, I don't want to see like a gushing fan-boy (oh wait...too late).

Which reminds me--I think I need to fire up the DVD player and spend some time in the Buffy-verse this summer....


At 12:08 PM, Blogger AG said...

I was REALLY shocked they picked *that* moment on Gilmore for the article. The episode was mediocre at best, even if seeing Lauren and Alexis sing along to that song was mildly amusing. How about....

-Emily in cahoots with Christopher and it all coming down to a, "you and me, we're done!" at the big vow renewal.

-"Luke, will you marry me?" End scene. Bwha?!

-The ending scene of "A Tale of Poes and Fire" when everyone sees the Independence Inn burned to the ground.

I'm tapped out at the moment, but Pippi? Really? You wound me, EW.

At 2:05 PM, Blogger Michael said...

I wish the article was on-line so I could say why they'd chosen said moment....

But the Buffy thing as number one...they were right on there.

Buffy rocks!


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