(S01E11) Cordelia: (to Wesley): I don't care how many files you have on all the horrible things that he did back in the Powdered Wig Days. He is good now. And he is my friend. And nothing you or anyone else can say will make me turn on a friend.
Angel: Cordelia, he's right.
Cordelia: You stake him, and I'll cut his head off.
There wasn't much revelation of Angel's infamous past in the first half of the first season of Angel. We had appearances from both Spike and Buffy (of Buffy the Vampire Slayer fame) to represent his recent past, but most of the episodes featured evil from the present. However, with this episode we took a look far back into the past of Angel, actually back to Angelus to be more specific, and the consequences of his evil doings in the bad ol' days.
(S01E10) Angel: Wesley.
Wesley: I'll wager you never thought you'd see me again.
Angel: To tell you the truth, I hadn't given it much thought one way or the other.
Hello, and welcome to Angel, Season 1A. You're probably scratching your heads at this categorization, since you're pretty sure that the first season of Angel wasn't broken up into two separate pieces. Well, actually, if you think about it, it really was two separate seasons.
Season one (the first nine episodes) set up the environment where Angel took place. We saw the beginning of some threads that would be carried throughout the series (The Powers That Be, Wolfram & Hart), but they were very subtle. With Doyle being the one who had the visions, and Cordelia trying to find her purpose in life, it seemed like a very different show. With the tenth episode, however, the dynamic of the show changed dramatically and set the stage for many events that would continue to the very end of the series. Hence, the reason that Season 1A begins with this episode.
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