Monday, February 6, 2012

Angel: Carpe Noctem (3.4)

Body swaps naturally create comedy, as we see people stumbling into the lives of others and rapidly messing things up for everyone around them. Carpe Noctem avoids any type of final resolution or an ending in which Angel discovers something about himself (via a 'how the other half lives'-type scenario), but quickly becomes one of the most entertaining episodes in a long while. It's such easy comedy (and sometimes the hour reeks of fan-service), but there's just so much fun to be had watching some horny old man inhabiting Angel's body and coming on to literally the entire female cast.

One of the most welcome surprises during this re-watch is derived from Fred. I had always remembered her crazily bugging me in early season three, from her overt kookiness to that annoying accent that was quietly dropped after a while. I don't know what I was smoking, since she's ridiculously adorable so far. How can you not feel badly for her this week? She's doing the expected thing of falling for the knight in shining armor that saved her from years of cave-girl slavery and, of course, he's Angel. And he doesn't like her like that. It's unfortunate that there's yet another 'man torments Fred' episode right around the corner, but so far Amy Acker is such a joy to watch, and has already given the character so many different levels. Love the girl.

Elsewhere, it made perfect sense for Lilah to secretly have a thing for Angel. Their scenes together already bristle with sexual tension that I couldn't help but scream out "geddit, girl!" during their office make-out session. I can't remember if their 'moment' is ever mentioned again, but surely there's got to be some follow-through.

Carpe Noctem takes standard genre tropes and runs with them. David Boreanaz was probably so used to playing dour that he embraced any episode that gave him something different to work with, and he's completely hilarious and squicky here. One of those underrated Angel standalones. A

Guest stars Stephanie Romanov (Lilah Morgan); Daniel Dae Kim (Gavin Parks); Rance Howard (Marcus Roscoe); Paul Benjamin (Resident)
Writer Scott Murphy Director James A. Contner


  1. ahh so cringey!

    He's very good with embodying a character, those finger taps on the car seat when he got into the car with Cordelia were horrendous!
    I find Fred a teensy tiny bit annoying but only a little because of how sweet she is. I like her character, it's interesting to see how she progresses.
    As for Lilah, she looked like she had revenge in those eyes, so embarrassing! >__< lol! geddit girl!

  2. Fred gets better. She's a little overly 'quirky' and 'cutesy' at the beginning of season three, but gradually becomes the lone non-infuriating female on the show.