Warning: This post may not mean a damn thing to anyone that doesn't watch Angel. To those who don't I say: this is all your stupid, ugly fault.
I've been trying to write this post since Sunday, when I found out that Angel has been cancelled
. It's a stupidly difficult thing to write about, because I don't want to sound like a hysterical mentalist with nothing more in her life than some fictional demon slayers, but damn it all, people, I liked those shows. It was difficult enough when Buffy finished, even if the last two seasons sucked some big ass towards the end. As I pointed out to my sister, even extremely sucky Buffy was still better than absolutely no Buffy.
Since being jobless and without much to do, I've been watching back over all the old seasons of Buffy, and it's brought back to me what an extremely intelligent show it was when on form. It never patronised viewers, didn't spoon feed a single thing, rewarded long term fans while at the same time welcoming in people off the street with open arms. Almost every episode could stand alone in its own right, while everything was also imbued with heaps of back story and hidden meaning. Story arcs reached right back to the start of the series, and could stretch out across decades, centuries, all the while staying consistently believable within the Jossverse. Things are hinted at in Season 2 that don't come to pass until Season 7. This was a series with vision, with depth, with feeling.
Angel was the same, only much much better. In my opinion - and this is only my opinion - Buffy kind of jumped the shark after (and some would argue because of) Dawn's appearance, when all the characters but a select few forgot who they were and started acting like caricatures of their former selves. In Angel, the characters slowly but surely developed through their four magnificent seasons, finding their feet as a unit, dividing, re-forming, suffering consequences and after effects, working through love, loss, high moral tales and low slapstick humour, all the while shot in beautiful sequences with dashing wardrobe and (for the most part) some great special effects. And that's just Wesley.
Now, Season 5 I've been having some problems with, what with this ridiculous notion that they've inherited the very law firm they've been fighting against all this time, with the brain implants and the sudden knowledge of science and the necro-tampered bullshit, and for god's sake, Spike as a ghost? But I'm happy to go along with it, because all the time there's still that sparkle, the hint of things to come that I know, as a regular and long-term viewer, will come to a handsome pay off.
And now they're just going to finish it all off. After asking Joss to make so many stupid changes, after trying to get the cross-over audience from Buffy to join in the fun with the continued and continual exposition, with the incredible short skirts Fred has to wear to make up for the loss of Cordelia... The news seems to have taken everyone involved by surprise, with Joss Whendon going to so far as to say he was heart broken
. J August Richard, who plays the criminally underused Gunn, has also made a statement
on his official website.
What to do? There really is nothing that can be done, to be honest. You could sign the online petition
, but that probably won't make any difference. You could write to the WB, write to the networks
, boycott the sponsors, write to the sponsors, put cute little buttons on your website, put great big stonking pictures on your website, phone Sky and complain, write to Mutant Enemy to show your support, set up a website to Save Angel
... and it seems like people are doing all these things.
What kind of makes it worse is that this news comes just after Cordelia returned for the 100th episode. And these brilliant still photos were released of an upcoming episode of Angel in which Angel is turned in to a puppet.
A show that is so unafraid to mock itself like this, and at the same time have some of the most revolutionary, ground breaking, mould destroying and thought provoking plots and story lilnes on television should not be cancelled. And yet it has been. I despair, people. I have to go lie down now.