Angel: Sense & Sensitivity
(S01E06) Angel: I'm a little reserved, it doesn't mean I don't care.
Cordelia: It's like you don't have a pulse.
Angel: Well... I don't.
Hi, everybody! I'm back from a few days in Canada, also known as the home to every science fiction show currently being made, ready to tackle the newest retro episode of Angel. Except, there isn't that much to tackle this week. Oh, don't get me wrong, there are two plot points introduced that setup future episodes; however, other than those, this is one of the lightest, least substantial shows of the season.
It is also the first time for the series that Angel doesn't focus on one of the three main characters: Angel (David Boreanaz), Cordelia (Charisma Carpenter) and Doyle (Glenn Quinn). It actually focuses on Los Angeles police detective Kate Lockley (Elisabeth Rohm), who receives the most screen time since her introduction in the episode "Lonely Hearts".
To summarize: Detective Lockley and her precinct are visited by a sensitivity trainer after Kate gets a bit rough with one of her suspects. The trainer passes around a 'talking stick', which allows the precinct members to express their feelings without fear of repercussions from family or friends. Unfortunately, the 'talking stick' is demon-possessed and anyone who touches it gets in touch with their feelings tenfold. This includes Kate and, eventually, Angel.
It turns out the trainer was hired by the law firm Wolfram & Hart on behalf of one of their recently arrested clients (a mob boss who was denied escape, courtesy of Angel) who would like to see Detective Lockley severely dead. So, as Lockley and the precinct have a collective emotional breakdown the mob boss escapes the jail cells below the precinct and prepares to kill Kate. Luckily, even in his touchy-feely state, Angel comes to the rescue. And, that's about it.
As I mentioned, two plot points are introduced that will be reflected in future episodes. The first is the introduction of Kate's father Trevor (John Mahon), a recently retired police officer. Distant with Kate after her mother's death, Trevor seems to have nothing but disdain for his daughter. This is particularly true after a demon-cursed Kate rips Dad a new one during a speech at his retirement party. The relationship between Kate and her Dad comes to a head in the episode "The Prodigal".
The second plot point to be introduced was the existence of the law firm Wolfram & Hart as something more than a simple collection of attorneys. There had been mention of the firm and appearances of its attorneys right from the first episode. But, with this episode we see that it actually has some direct ties to the demon world and is willing to get its hands dirty to protect one of its clients. This revelation sets Wolfram & Hart up to be the main instigator in Angel's life throughout the entire series run.
Elisabeth Rohm had a fine performance in this episode of Angel, particularly in the retirement speech to her Dad, and it's a shame that she wasn't utilized to her full potential on the series. And, while the regular players took to the sidelines this episode, they all had their good moments. Particularly Boreanaz as Angel, who portrayed Herb Saunders from Baltimore with perfection (hey, watch the show if you don't believe me).
Next week, spotlight on Doyle.