A is for… Angel
You may notice a nod or twenty to Joss Whedon in my list of Supernatural/Sci-Fi/Fantasy TV shows and here is the first.
Angel – the ‘best vampire with a soul’ got his own spin-off series that ran for five seasons (1999-2004). He is joined by Cordelia and then Wesley and latterly Spike as well as having some guest appearances from other Buffy stars. Running his own Supernatural PI firm Angel Investigations he often comes up against the shady Wolfram Hart law company.
My top 5 episodes from Angel are:
Smile Time – Season 5 Episode 14
Angel gets turned into a puppet – Spike takes the piss – enough said.
Spin the Bottle – Season 4 Episode 6
A spell gone awry makes everyone think they are 17. Spike and Giles think they are father and son.
Over the Rainbow/Through the Looking Glass/There’s No Place Like Plrtz Glrb
The team are sucked into Lorne’s home dimension Pylea through a portal. Cordelia is treated as a Princess and is placed in charge (which she loves) and we meet Fred (the fantastic Amy Acker).
And a quick nod to American Gothic
Tomorrow B is for…Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Much later this evening A is for…Autoethnography (in my PhD A to Z challenge – post still being written and I’m off out).
So are you Angel fans? What episodes or characters do you like best?
- V is for…
For a long time I have been interested in/fascinated by Vampires.
I’m pretty sure it started with reading Bram Stoker’s Dracula at school.
The original Buffy the Vampire Slayer film at the cinema might have been next, in Nov 1992 when I was 14 and the price of a cinema ticket was £1.95!!!!!
The Gary Oldman version of Dracula also came out that year but I was a bit young to have seen it in the cinema (and I have no ticket!).
However I have a feeling I had seen The Lost Boys on TV before this (it was released in 1987). I’m guessing I may had stayed up late without permission.
to watch it (naughty).
This film has one of my all time favourite lines in it: It’s a bit rude so I’m linking to the imdb quote.
In fact this is still one of my all time favourite films.
I also remember seeing a kid’s TV series ‘The Little Vampire‘ based on books by Angela Sommer-Bodenburg. This was dubbed and I’m pretty sure I quite liked the idea of a flying cape!
I read ‘The Secret Vampire’ by L. J. Smith. It came out in 96/97 and I reckon I probably bought it from a small bookshop in Barmouth in North Wales (the best store bar Woolworths that they had there when I was visiting my grandparents). I would have been at university at the time and so it was likely to have inspired the vampire novel idea I had but have yet to complete. [The ending of this book came to me in a dream in about 98 and I have written some of it but am no-where near finished – I do plan to finish it and would like to print myself off a copy from somewhere even if that’s as far as it goes].
I was pleasantly surprised more recently to find out that ‘The Secret Vampire’ was actually the first book in a series, called The Night World. Currently there are nine books with the tenth and final book due out next year (I am itching to read it).
Weirdly I thought I had read this at a much younger age.
In Jan 1995 I went to see Interview with a Vampire (I have a number of the books which I still have yet to read). I was so impressed with Kirsten Dunst’s performance in this as an old soul in such a young body. I still cry every time I watch this film.
When Buffy the Vampire Slayer the series started in 1997 I was well and truly hooked… Though much of this has to do with the genius of Joss Whedon (see my J is for… Post) to find out more about my love for BTVS and Angel.
And then there’s Blade and From Dusk to Dawn and Near Dark and Let the Right One In, which are a lot more bloody and violent than I usually like my vampires to be but I enjoyed these too.
Much more recently is of course the Twilight series. I read the books before the films came out. Oddly enough though I am on Team Jacob (Werewolf) and not Team Edward (Vampire). Jacob generally makes Bella seem happier.
I’ve got a number of vampire book series ready to read (more about them on my Y is for… Post).
Then finally there are the three current TV series, Being Human (end of series 3, How could they?), True Blood (very saucy vampires indeed) and The Vampire Diaries (based on a series of books by L.J. Smith) in which the very delectable Damon smoulders (below – my apologies can’t remember where I got the pic from). The books really are quite different to the series and I think they’ve done some TV tie in books (Stephen’s Diary) which I might get on Kindle when I’ve read all my thousands of ‘to read’ books.
I’m not entirely sure why vampires fascinate me so much but here are some possible reasons:
- I am a night owl and not a huge fan of the sun so can identify with this ;o) and being pale and pasty
- I’m not keen on looking in a mirror and maybe not having a reflection is appealing
- Vampires live forever – when you have a death phobia this may seem positive (however I am a vegetarian so the thought of drinking blood of even animal origin is yuck yuck yuck)
- Vampires are damn sexy – or at least they are mostly portrayed as such in film/tv
- I’m generally interested in supernatural topics
- I got interested in this topic as a teenager and I still feel like an eternal teenager!
- Honestly I don’t really understand why, I just am!
What vampire films/books/TV etc are your favourites?
Are there any I haven’t mentioned here that you would really recommend?
(I’m 100% percent sure that this is not everything vampire related that I’ve seen/read but what I could remember whilst writing this post).
And for those of you interested in Vampires too the lovely Shah over at WordsinSync has also chosen V for Vampires in the A-Z Challenge and her post can be found <a href="http://here
- J is for…
Joss Whedon and (Jensen Ackles again)
Now thanks to the My Laminated List I’ve already covered Jensen but I think he deserves another little picture, don’t you?
Now I did debate on putting this post under G for Gods. Jensen is my current God of lust (for reasons that should be obvious to all and especially those who have watched Supernatural) and Joss Whedon is my God of TV.
I remember seeing Buffy the Vampire Slayer the movie (I think it was back in 1992) – I probably went to see it because I’d loved The Lost Boys. Now the film, if you take it as a comedy and bit of fluff was a lot of fun and I enjoyed it. So when I heard it was being made into a TV Series I was soooo excited.
I loved it straight away and another one of my obsessions began – of course the fact that there was this gorgeous brooding vampire played by no 3 of my list). Angel left at the end of season 3 – nooooooooo, but he got his own show……..yes, thank you God, I mean Joss. Then the evil spooky priest dude (nearly no 5 on My laminated list) got a show too, Firefly (which I only recently watched and have only seen once – a re-watch is on the list) and a film Serenity. Then Faith got her own show where she played a girl who could be anyone in Dollhouse and Fred from Angel turned up in that too.
In my view all of these shows have been cancelled way too soon because I think Joss is too clever for words and that he says so much about current issues whilst framing it in the Supernatural and sci-fi. I think he’s got a lot to say and I can’t wait to see what he does next and who from his previous series star in it. Joss (and his fellow writers though he is the initial concept guy so gets top billing here) can do horror, comedy, drama, genre, brilliant characters and conflict and well, pop-culture references I love to recognise. In fact he does everything well sometimes all in the same episode.
Here are a few of my top episodes
Once More with Feeling – Musical. Episode. Nuff said – love the song I’m Under Your Spell. And that training montage – pure class.
Hush – The Gentleman are some of the freakiest creatures ever to have been invented (just ask my sister she hates it when I do my Gentlemen impression). And the majority of the episode is done without dialogue (makes note to rewatch as part of my screenwriting lessons).
The Body – deals with human death in such a heartbreaking way – the non use of backing music in this episode is eerie
Normal Again – Does the it was all a dream with a psychosis twist and leaves you wondering at the end…
The Pack – Xander turning into a Hyena – kinda sexy
Out of Mind, Out of Sight – we’ve all had that feeling invisible scenario but what happens when being ignored makes you disappear?
Halloween – I love Halloween – this episode makes me very careful about what costume I wear – hence punk fairy, vampire with cool wings.
Lie to Me – you want to be a vampire – really!
Suprise/Innocence – Bow chic a wow wow with Angel, Angel is like a lot of blokes after but worse and they kill a giant smurf!
Becoming Parts 1/2 – Xander how could you!!!
Band Candy – Giles used to be called Ripper and he’s hooking up with Buffy’s mum – fab
The Wish – Vampire Willow is badass
Dopplegangland – normal Willow as vampire Willow – hilarious.
The Zeppo – Xander saves the day and nobody realises
Earshot – think being able to hear what people are thinking is a good thing – think again.
The Prom – school protector – they did notice.
Beer Bad – alcohol makes you a Neanderthal – literally.
The Initiative – The ‘bedroom’ scene with Willow and Spike is pure comic genius
Dracula – Dracula – and Buffy’s got a little sister – what?
The Gift – 100 episodes and still cracking
Seeing Red/Villains/Two to Go/Grave – And the big bad of the series is… And they are stopped with a yellow crayon.
Help – A young girl faces the inevitable but Buffy refuses to let fate play its hand – does she succeed?
Same Time, Same Place – another creepy, creepy monster in this one – gives me the shivers just thinking about him
Storyteller – really love this for Andrew’s character
Chosen – the final episode and what a corker
Smile Time – the best Angel episode – puppet Angel makes me Guffaw (yes, I said Guffaw)
Rm w/a Vu – Cordelia queen of mean defeated by a ghost – as if
I Will Remember You – you bring us hope and then you take it away
Hero – Doyle!!!!
The Ring – Angel gets his fight on
Five by Five/Sanctuary – Faith’s in town
Over the Rainbow – Hello Fred
Billy – violence begets violence
Lullaby – there really is nothing stronger than a mother’s love
Dad – Angel with a baby – ahhhhh
A New World – where’s the cute baby – instead we have an Edward Furlong in T2 lookalike
Deep Down – bring back Angel – please
Spin the Bottle – a teen return – fun episode
Souless – Angelus is back
Just Rewards – Spike isn’t dead anymore, well he’s only half dead
A Hole in the World – Nope I didn’t see that coming :o(
Ghost – seems Dolls have issues too
The Target – do they not vet these people?
Stage Fright – The Bodyguard 2.1
Gray Hour – Just when you need to break out of a safe someone goes and wipes you
True Believer – Echo plays Blind and it’s about freaky cults
Briar Rose – Altruistic use of Echo – plus we meet Alpha
Instinct – there really is nothing stronger than a mother’s love even when it’s imprinted
Belonging – revenge is a dish best served bloody
Stop-Loss – Victor centred episode
The Attic – so that’s what that is
Epitaph One/Epitaph Two: Return – two futuristic episodes bookend the end of each season – a warning for us all?
And I need to watch Firefly more before I can pick, but Serenity (the film) is bigger and just as damn good
To be honest I’m happy to watch all episodes over and over, please do try them out if you haven’t seen them. I’ve pre-ordered the Buffy Season 8 DVD (Comic Book Style) – now available in iTunes but I’m going to wait and watch it in one hit on a bigger screen.
Has anybody seen Dr Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog?
I’ve highlighted my, ‘if I could only ever watch three episodes of this series what would I pick’, in bold.
Which of these series do you like and what are your top three episodes in it?