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 Angel's Secrets

Angel the Series Episode Guide

"The Trial"

Episode # 31
Original Air Date: November 28, 2000
Review by: Chrystal

Episode Review

Wow, I don't know about you about I was blown away by this episode. What a wonderful episode! I never saw the plot twist at the end of the episode coming even though I had been reading the spoilers. This episode was an emotional roller coaster. David's performance was outstanding as was Julie Benz's. Angel's desperation to make Darla appreciate her humanity was touching, although a bit exasperating. Again, the flashbacks were nicely spaced throughout the story and built on the history we already knew about Darla and Angel.

I thought for sure that Darla would be given another chance after Angel survived the trials and that would be the end of the whole thing. Instead, Darla is forced to accept her brief mortality. For the first time, she understood what is means to be loved selflessly by another being. When the door burst open, I was totally surprised to see Druscilla glide in. Now we know why Angel explained how vampires can enter hotel rooms. It was great seeing Dru in the present. She seemed so calm, almost sane. The expression on Angel's face and tear-filled eyes as he witnessed Darla being vamp was heartbreaking. David's restrained approach to the scene was more powerful than if he had cried out loud. While felt Angel's anguish, I'm not convinced that Darla would have resisted being vamped if she have been given the choice.

Lindsey's loneliness combined with his unrequited love for Darla was palatable as Angel confronted him in the darkness of his pricey apartment. I'm still perplexed by Wolfram and Hart's plan against Angel. Are they just trying to inflict pain on Angel? Or is there a bigger agenda? In any case, I definitely think that Lindsey's feelings for Darla are real. I won't be surprised he engineered Dru's return without Wolfram and Hart's approval, although they may have anticipated this turn of events.

Despite all the angst, the episode did have a few moments of well-placed humor. The first scene where Angel explains that he lied to Wesley and Cordelia about not being worried about Darla because they would nag him made me smile. Their concern was sweet. I couldn't stop laughing at the scene where Cordelia and Wesley threatened to hit Darla with a heavy object on the head. Angel may be gullible in his need to save Darla, but Cordelia and Wesley see what Angel doesn't see or doesn't want to see, Darla do not want the gift of her humanity. Good to see TGM again. I was glad that Darla was the one singing not Angel. While not the strongest vocalist, Julie Benz did a great job of conveying Darla's pain through song.

I'm pleased to say that the series bounced back with this excellent episode and can't wait for the next new episode. Damn, repeats!


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