Characters: Angel Investigations
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Characters
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Tropes that apply to Team Angel as a whole:
Angel, né Liam
"For a hundred years, I offered an ugly death to everyone I met, and I did it with a song in my heart."
A vampire, one of the worst recorded. Sired in Oireland
circa 1753 by Darla and, adopting the name "Angelus," wreaked havoc across Europe for almost 150 years until he angered a Gypsy clan by killing one of their beloved daughters. The Gypsies cursed him by returning his soul, filling him with remorse for his crimes.
After a century of living in squalor and feeding off rats, Angel is recruited by the Powers That Be
and sent to watch over Buffy Summers, the newly-called Slayer. He serves as a Scoobies' contact in the demon world and Buffy's first Love Interest
, but loses his soul in Season 2, becoming a formidable Big Bad
with a love of torture (both physical and psychological
Even re-ensouled, the threat isn't over. Should Angel achieve even a moment of pure happiness, the gypsy curse is automatically lifted; their code of vengeance holds that it's better for him to become evil again than to do anything to ease his suffering. Realizing that he's a danger as long as he's around Buffy, he packs up and Sunnydale for Los Angeles, where he gets his own show. He continues to fight demons as a form of penance for his crimes.
He returned to Buffy in the Season 8 comics, and co-stars with Faith in the comic series called Angel and Faith
- Bad Dreams: With such regularity, one wonders how he catches any winks without valium. Yet another downside to being undead: vampires share a Psychic Link with their kin. When a vampire he sired 100 years ago starts killing people locally, Angel feels it. In Angel Season Two, Angel starts having... erm, 'dreams' about his maker. It is later revealed that Darla is dosing him with occult herbs to drive him into a frenzy.
- Batman Gambit: Near the end of After the Fall, Angel, realizing that the Senior Partners need him alive for their plans, provokes Gunn into killing him, forcing the Partners to hit the Reset Button so that the Fall of Los Angeles never happened and bringing back everyone who died since then in the process, which is exactly what Angel expected them to do.
- Be Careful What You Wish For: Liam always wanted to get out of Galway and see the world so naturally, he jumped at Darla's offer to see it together. Then he was vampirized but still didn't regret it until the gypsies forced his soul back inside him.
- Beast and Beauty: With Buffy and Cordelia, in that order, because he's a vampire and they are cute human girls.
- Been There, Shaped History: He was in China during the Boxer Rebellion, and apparently knew Elvis and The Rat Pack personally.
- Being Good Sucks: Atonement's a bitch.
- Berserk Button:
- Blue Oni: To Spike's red. Spike's embrace of punk music, as opposed to quieter, more emotive music (Angel is a closet Fanilow as well as an ex-RatPack groupie) is indicative of his distaste for brooding intellectual types like Angel.
- Big Bad: For Season 2 of Buffy. Also took over the role for a short while in Angel's fourth season after killing The Beast, until he was re-ensouled again by Willow.
- Big Fancy House: A creepy, art deco mansion on the edge of town. Angelus moves into the abandoned residence along with Drusilla and Spike. When he comes back from hell in Season 3, Angel stays there until the end of the season.
- Blasphemous Boast: Part of Angelus's M.O. at one point was to carve the image of a crucifix into his victims' left cheek so as to spite God.
- Brought Down to Badass: Is turned human by the Senior Partners in the After the Fall comics in order to hinder him. Using various charms and spells, he's still in the game and kicking ass.
- Bruiser with a Soft Center: Ah, Angel. Brooding, angsty vampire trying to fight the good fight, within LA and himself. Who'd ever think that he dug Mandy and Barry Manilow, or had a fear of dancing (yet a secret desire to, despite how awful he is at it) or go on about how much he loves Buffy when pretending to be drunk?
- Celibate Hero: "I'm not a eunuch!"
- Can't Have Sex, Ever: With any woman he loves, or else he'll try to destroy the world again. Realistically, any sex would be a gamble because it would reveal his vampire nature. His love life is about as checkered as everyone else's in the series.
Do you spend all your time making out with other vampires, like in Anne Rice
Uh, no. I used to, but... Connor:
You have a girlfriend at least? Angel:
Can't afford to. Connor:
Must be lonely. Angel: (defensively)
I keep busy!
- He manages to share intimacy with a werewolf, Nina Ash, near the conclusion of Angel. The trick is, their relationship is premature — to say nothing of Angel's mounting gloom at having to send her away in the series finale.
- The Champion: He appointed himself as Buffy's guardian shortly after she was called as a Slayer.
- Chronically Crashed Car: The Plymouth got totaled in the pilot, and later wound up in Lorne's basement club (via a wormhole), making it somewhat resemble a Jackrabbit Slim's. (They never do explain how they removed the car.)
- Closet Geek: Angel & Faith teaches us that Angel is a die-hard fan of Douglas Adams. It helped him through a difficult period in The Eighties...
- Clueless Detective: A Running Gag is that he's better at fighting demons than he is at genuine detective work. On one occasion, he had to hire another detective agency with a Friend on the Force for help on a case.
- The Comically Serious: The fact that he's periodically-evil while his companions are all Happy Meals with legs might have something to do with all the jokes at his expense, to keep him grounded.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: Angelus' M.O because he's an evil prick.
- Cool Car:
- A black Plymouth convertible, mirroring Spike's muscle car. The only difference is, Angel's roof is detachable... in sunny LA. (He purchased it on the cheap.)
- A whole fleet of luxury cars (with necrotempered windows™) after he becomes Wolfram & Hart's CEO. Also, a helicopter.
- Deus Angst Machina: Mr. Whedon, don't make him happy. You wouldn't like him when he's happy.
- Determined Defeatist: Though there is the occasional reprieve, at heart, Angel suspects that he will never stop paying for his crimes. He and Spike share a grumpy exchange about how they're both going to Hell, and thus will never be rid of each other.
- Do Not Go Gentle: In the Angel TV finale, his plan is to take out the Circle of the Black Thorn, the Senior Partners' main instruments of evil on Earth, and go out in a blaze of glory.
- Do with Him as You Will:
- In season 2's "Reunion," Holland Manners, having had Drusilla re-sire a resurrected Darla, gives them full backing for whatever massacre they intend to carry out and organizes a wine tasting at his house for Wolfram & Hart employees to celebrate his success, only for Drusilla and Darla to crash the party, intending to kill Holland and the W&H employees there as revenge for being used as pawns. Angel shows up, apparently planning to Save the Villain... but instead, Angel also wants them dead and locks them all in the wine cellar with Darla and Drusilla before leaving them to die.
- In season 3's "Double or Nothing," Jenoff, a paranormal crime boss/casino owner, comes to collect Gunn's soul in accordance with a Deal with the Devil Gunn made years ago. In the climax, Angel chops off the head of said crime boss. It quickly becomes apparent that this will only temporarily incapacitate him, so Angel asks who else in the casino owes the man, and leaves as the mob descends on Jenoff.
- The Dreaded: Everyone's scared of Angelus.
- Freudian Excuse: Wesley, of all people, chastises Angel for hiding behind his gyspy curse so he doesn't have to face having serious relationships with women. Angel acknowledges he is completely right.
- Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: Trope Codifier. Spike's the trope namer
- From Nobody to Nightmare: He was just a jobless, drunken, 18th-century Eurotrash lout before Darla sired him. It turns out that he had a huge capacity for depravity which surprises even his maker.
- Go Mad from the Isolation/With Great Power Comes Great Insanity: Season three's "Birthday" depicts an alternate reality in which Cordelia never joined Angel Investigations. Doyle passed his visions on to Angel prior to his Heroic Sacrifice, and Angel retreated into himself in his grief, with the visions only making things worse. Before long, Angel went completely insane from his own loneliness and his visions, to the extent that he would have visions of his victims. The worst of it all is that what Cordelia sees of that version of Angel, a babbling, incoherent mess who starts pounding his head on the wall while talking to her, is, according to that world's Wesley and Gunn, him on a good day.
- Goal in Life: To protect Buffy as she assumes the Slayer mantle and, later, to fulfill the Shanshu Prophecy and become human. Angel sometimes deviates from this, for various reasons, among them a belief that his mission is being clouded by self-interest. By the fifth season, his faith wavers to the point of dismissing the Prophecy entirely. In the Series Finale, Angel is forced to literally sign away his chances in the human sweepstakes, nullifying the prophecy with a signature in blood. In the comic continuation, the Senior Partners finally give him a glimpse of the Shanshu Prophecy: Himself standing in an apocalyptic wasteland, grinning like a maniac. Now, Angel's goal is to keep improving the world in spite of the Prophecy; with luck, the future can be altered. (Unless the Partners were just dicking with him again.)
- Gollum Made Me Do It: On Angel, Angelus is shown as a distinct personality, self-image, and memories of his own. This is a slight departure from Buffy, in which Angelus was just Angel with his Restraining Bolt removed.
- Good Is Not Soft: He is a nice guy most of the time, but he can switch to ruthless at the drop of a hat and he has a hundred years of doing extremely horrible things to people for giggles to draw on. It is also not a good idea to go after people he cares about.
- Good Smoking, Evil Smoking: Smokes cigarettes as Angelus, as well as during his Knight Templar phase in Angel season 2.
- Gypsy Curse: Gypsies are responsible for returning his soul so he would be overwhelmed by 200 years of guilt. It's also the reason he can never be perfectly happy because he would lose his soul.
- The Hedonist: Liam was a drunken womanizer before he was sired, and Angel is well aware that these human weaknesses are still part of him. Tasked with protecting Buffy by the Powers That Be, he romances her instead, despite Buffy being only sixteen at the time (seventeen on the day he sleeps with her). Angel's subsequent Celibate Hero status isn't entirely due to a need to repress his evil side.
"It's not the demon that needs killing. It's the man."
- Hell-Bent for Leather: Famous for his Leather Pants of Evil, which he never lived down.
- Hero with Bad Publicity: After the end of magic. Due in part to the various atrocities he committed as Twilight, he's even more loathed and feared by the magical community than Buffy, the one who caused the end of magic.
- Heroes Love Dogs: Lampshaded by Angelus, who offers to send Angel "to that big puppy pound in the sky" as revenge for all those puppies he's saved. Played for Laughs when Gunn assures him that he'll get along fine with The Conduit — as long as he likes cats. Whoops.
- Heroic BSOD: Sometimes caused by remorse over his own actions, other times brought on by a century-long stay in Hell which leaves him a trembling mute. Lampshaded on Angel, when Spike joins the cast.
"I spent a hundred years
trying to come to terms with infinite remorse! You spent three weeks moaning in a basement
, AND THEN YOU WERE FINE
! What's fair about that?!"
- Hoist by His Own Petard: In every sense of the word. Buffy runs him through with a replica of his own blessed sword, which in turns sucks him through his own hell portal. Putting a damper on this irony is the knowledge that Angel suffers the fate reserved for Angelus, because he regained his soul moments beforehand and that brief vulnerability may well have been what allowed Buffy's victory.
- Hollywood Tone-Deaf: On his own show, which displays his more private foibles in a way the original show doesn't. Wang Chung will never recover.
- Hopeless With Tech: Never really gets the hang of cell phones.
"They talk about me in the chatty rooms?"
- Hunk: By 2004, he was essentially Seeley Booth in Matrix-wear. (Because he is Seeley Booth!) His attractiveness is how he got his nickname: A monster with "the face of an angel".
- Hunter of His Own Kind: The vampire community still can't believe their most revered hero is now gutting them in the shadows, for money.
- I Am a Monster: Shouted in Romanian while being dragged off into an alley to be beaten. This was in 1898, shortly after Angel was cursed.
- I Can't Dance: He proved quite adept at slow dancing in Sunnydale. But when invited to a party for hip twentysomethings, he imagines himself flailing about like a spaz.
- I Hate You, Vampire Dad: Inverted with Darla; Angel definitely holds some animosity toward her, yet maintains an almost filial devotion. Inverted again with Connor, who is, ironically, human. (Mostly.) Spike has a cathartic moment when he confronts Angel for fashioning him into the monster he is; Drusilla was his sire but Angelus was his Yoda.
- I Was Quite a Fashion Victim: Angel in the '70s. There's a positive side to not being able to see your reflection sometimes.
- Immortal Immaturity
Angel: You know, I started it. The whole "having a soul". Before it was all the cool new thing.
Buffy: Oh, my God. Are you twelve?
- Immortal Life Is Cheap: Spike doesn't bother aiming around Angel to hit a target; Spike just stabs right through him. In all fairness, that was Spike...
Angel: You just like stabbing me.
- Immortality Hurts: Try spending it at the bottom of the Pacific. Gives you some perspective. Kind of an M. C. Escher perspective.
- Instant Fan Club: Angelus' groupies, Karl and Paco.
- Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Whether as Angel or Angelus, he's quite fond of this.
- Jekyll & Hyde: Angel (Good guy) Angelus (bad guy)
- Kind Restraints: Voluntarily chained up or thrown behind bars whenever he feels the bad side coming on, similar to Oz. Although Cordelia seemed to enjoy it a little too much.
- Knight of Cerebus: The previous villains certainly weren't harmless, but Buffy became much darker once Angelus was unleashed.
- Knight Templar: Turns against his friends for a few months as he goes on a crusade of punishing the guilty (Wolfram & Hart), rather than helping the helpless.
"Let them fight 'the good fight'. Someone's gotta fight the war."
- Knight in Sour Armor: Even if the world sucks and the fight will never end in his favor, someone has to keep it going. He even states at least once that he doesn't really believe that he'll ever be redeemed for his crimes, but keeps trying anyway.
- Large and in Charge: Angel's a pretty big guy and The Leader of Angel Investigations.
- Late-Arrival Spoiler: In Season 1 the revelation that Angel is a vampire was suppose to be a twist back in the day. If you were to tell that to someone with even a tiny amount of knowledge about the series now they would probably laugh at you. This is also the case with his first Heel-Face Turn.
- Leitmotif: A heroic sounding anthem, later phased out in the third season. Brought back intentionally for a moment in Season 5 when Angel is in desperate need to rediscover his original mission statement of helping the helpless.
- Like a Badass out of Hell: Not only did he get paroled from Hell, he was willing to travel back into it and take out the Senior Partners.
- Limited Wardrobe: Even after becoming incredibly wealthy and having access to a limitless wardrobe, he still wears black all the time.
- Love Interest: To Buffy.
- Love Makes You Evil: Literally; "perfect happiness" turns him into Angelus.
- Mad Artist: Angelus was very protective of his 'work', considering it art. Drusilla was what you might call an extended performance piece.
- Man of Wealth and Taste: Angelus was always coiffed in the old days.
- Manipulative Bastard: Angelus's talent for (often sadistic) mind games and deception are legendary. Though he rarely makes use of it, Angel is still dangerously capable in this regard.
- Martyr Without a Cause: If there's no evil around to throw himself in front of protecting innocents, he will either run out and find some more or he will wind up defending lesser evils while tormenting himself for doing so. It's a complex.
- Mayfly-December Romance: Part of the reason he leaves Buffy, the other, of course, being his Curse Escape Clause.
- Misplaced Retribution: The gypsies didn't really think that through. Angel has to spend all of eternity suffering for the crimes of Angelus? Liam was a womanising jerk at worst, but Darla murdered him and a demon spent two centuries murdering and marauding with his face.
- The Movie Buff: A fan of Charlton Heston movies, particularly The Omega Man. What a surprise. He's also seen enough vampire flicks to formulate opinions on which ones are more accurate. (Frank Langella nailed it.)
- Mr. Fanservice: Shirtless often. The man likes his tai chi. He really is something to look at, and he's often chained up and tortured. He's even been bound by a vampire dominatrix more than once.
- Mysterious Protector: Cryptic Guy — in the first season he'd turn up, warn Buffy of some danger, then vanish. It takes a while for Angel to evolve into the Bad Ass Hero he is now.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Creating the Twilight dimension by screwing Buffy, which let thousands of demons invade Earth, which resulted in the destruction of the Seed of Wonder and removed all magic from the world.
- The Nose Knows: Vampiric super-senses, particularly centred around blood.
- Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Angelus' Irish accent tends to come and go in flashbacks. Furthermore, having lived in America for the past hundred years, Angel speaks with a flawless American accent, though he states that he could speak with an Irish accent again if he wanted to.
- Not Good with People:
"I have two modes: Bite and avoid."
- Obfuscating Stupidity: Angel is fond of playing this role, often as a Hawaiian-Shirted Tourist. On set, the shorthand for this became "Herb Saunders" (Angel's alias in "Sense & Sensitivity").
- Of Corpse He's Alive: Any idiot can eat somebody. Angelus likes to make artistic statements with the bodies afterward. He infamously posed Jenny Calender like a doll in Giles' bed (staging the scene to resemble a romantic interlude), and tricked a man into thinking his slain sons were still "asleep".
- Offing the Offspring: An ancient scroll prophesied that Angel is doomed to do this. It's half-correct; Angel slays Connor in one timeline, but he survives in another reality.
- Omnicidal Maniac:
"My friends, we're about to make history. End."
- Omniglot: He's had a lot of time to practice, and after a while places run out of people to murder, so you move to the next one and learn another language there.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: He is rarely called Liam. Lilah once called it a "wussy name".
- Only One Name: Fred had to lie and say "Angel" is Connor's last name, with Angel using the alias "Geraldo Angel."
- OOC Is Serious Business: Usually it's a sign of Angelus returning. It can also be a sign of Tranquil Fury, as Wesley finds out.
- Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: It's hard for Boreanaz to maintain Angelus' Irish accent for more than half a minute.
- Open Heart Dentistry: Angel has shown himself able to dig bullets out of his own body when pressed for time.
- "Open!" Says Me: Angel fights the good fight — against doors.
- Opportunistic Bastard: Angelus in Season 2 has no real plan beyond "screw with Buffy". It isn't until the last few episodes that Acathla arrives and gives him an actual goal to work towards, and even that falls into his general attitude of "I will be as big a dick as I can."
- Papa Wolf: Towards Connor. It took an entire episode before anybody was allowed to even approach him. As of Season 4, you would do well to avoid even implying his existence.
- Patrick Stewart Speech:
- Often lampooned. Jasmine keeps turning his own ultimatums against him (like you've never eaten people!), and Lindsey confesses he just zones out when the yapping starts.
- In season 5, while he's in full flow of preaching to Illyria about the sanctity of all human life, including her flunky Knox despite the fact that Knox was the one who brought Illyria back and killed Fred, Wesley promptly cuts him short by gunning Knox down right then and there. Angel's response?
Angel: Were you even listening?
- Psychotic Smirk: Angelus always wears one because he's basically Psycho!Angel.
- Politically Incorrect Villain:
- Angelus and his constant jibes at the wheelchair-bound Spike. He's got a million of 'em, ladies and gentlemen.
- When Angelus appears in season 4 of Angel, he uses the word "retarded" often.
- Power Loss Makes You Strong: The Senior Partners, upon sending L.A. to Hell (After the Fall), simultaneously turn Angel human at the least convenient time possible.
- Power Perversion Potential: Angelus mentions his superhearing picking up on Fred and Gunn having sex in an adjacent hotel room, and indulging in A Date with Rosie Palms.
- The Punishment: Two hundred years of guilt and a prohibition against perfect happiness...Man can those gypsies hold a grudge.
- Real Men Wear Pink: He's fond of ballet, Barry Manilow, and Spike's poetry.
- Redemption Equals Death: Just as he casts off the Angelus persona, Buffy runs him through with a sword and he gets pulled into Hell by Acathla. He comes back later.
- Reduced to Ratburgers: By the time Whistler found him, Angel was homeless and scrounging off of rat blood. (To add insult to injury, he has difficulty catching one.)
- Riches to Rags: Angelus never had trouble maintaining a nice pad, expensive clothes, or box theater seats. ("I just ate the people who had 'em.") Once cursed and jilted by Darla, he spent years as a homeless bum living on rats.
- Running Gag: His hair, his lousy singing, his "caveman brow", the leather pants he wore when he was evil and his occasional pettiness despite his advanced age.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: An exhaustive display in Angel season 2, in reaction to Darla being resurrected, tormented and then re-vamped by Wolfram and Hart suits. This culminated with Angel tossing the firm's entire senior staff to the wolves in the form of Drusilla and Darla.
- Scarily Competent Tracker: Not only can Angel sniff the air and tell if the soil beneath him has been disturbed, he can glance at a spot of blood and immediately determine who and what it belongs to. This sort of blood hyper-analysis appears to be common to vamps. Spike mentions that you can tell if someone's evil by tasting their blood (it tastes like pennies).
- Self-Made Orphan: "My parents were great. Tasted a lot like chicken."
- Shoo Out the Clowns: Poor Spike is left to rot in a wheelchair while the significantly less cuddly Angelus steals the spotlight.
- Spiky Hair: Lampshaded on more than one occasion. Angel seems shocked when he views his reflection for the first time in Pylea, implying that his hairstyle is some sort of tragic accident.
(examining head) "Why didn't anyone tell me about this?"
- Split Personality Takeover: Whenever Angelus is unleashed.
- The Sociopath: All normal vampires lack a soul and thus the ability to feel things like empathy and remorse, thus Angelus is one of these, though an exceptionally sadistic one.
- Sadist: Angelus is renowned for being incredibly sadistic in his killings.
- Stages of Monster Grief: Buffy previously flashed back to Angelus getting re-ensouled; Angel covers everything that happened before and after. It should be noted that this is an inversion of the trope as well, since Angel identifies more with Angelus than with with his original self, Liam - who, by the end of the show, he barely remembers being. It could be said that his grief was more over losing his freedom as a vampire by regaining his humanity than having been a human who was turned into a vampire. With his stages being:
- Denial: His attempts to continue his life as a vampire despite his re-ensoulment.
- Defiance: Angel never got to properly experience this stage, since Darla killed all the gypsies who re-ensouled him. He instead took it out on himself during his self-imposed 100 year exile from humanity and vampirekind. Angelus, however, did get to kill Jenny Calendar and an older male relative, both descendants of the gypsies who re-ensouled him.
- Acceptance: After he met Whistler and Buffy.
- Betrayal: Either after making love to Buffy and losing his soul, or....well, stay tuned...
- Stalking Is Love: Angel in both his evil and not-evil incarnations. He met and fell in love with Buffy when she was 15. He then stalked her for a year before revealing himself and he's still up it on the fifth season of Angel, despite being burdened with a desk job! (He has "a source" keeping tabs on her in Italy.) Spike thinks it's pathetic.
- Star-Crossed Lovers: Angel, vampire. Buffy, slayer thereof. Add that to his curse and its consequences if broken, and we have two crazy kids who aren't ever sorting it out.
- Also with Cordelia. The Powers themselves seem to enjoy interfering (literally, in one case) and stopping them from having a relationship.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: Lampshaded repeatedly.
Xander: Okay, that's it. I'm putting a collar with a little bell around that guy.
- Suddenly Always Knew That: Photographic Memory, Super Reflexes, ultra-sensitive hearing and sense of smell in the later seasons. When you re-watch the earlier seasons, you can't help but notice countless situations where, in retrospect, they inexplicably fail to help him. Angel mentioned that he can't control his photographic memory; it just "kicks in on instinct".
- Suicide By Sunlight: Attempted in "Amends", but he gets saved by a Christmas Miracle.
- Tall, Dark and Handsome: Despite some initial belligerence, Buffy can't help noting this after their first meeting. Though he's often dubbed Tall, Dark and Broody instead.
- Team Dad: Lampshaded early on, in which Angel addresses to a bickering Cordelia and Wesley as "children."
- The Teetotaler: After a fashion. Word of God states that Angel's abstinence from human blood is a metaphor for this.
- Tranquil Fury: Uses it quite a bit. When he drops the "Tranquil" part, run. For. Your. Life.
- Vampire Detective: Once he starts up Angel Investigations, he is a vampire taking cases.
- Vegetarian Vampire: Exclusively drinks pig's blood, which turns off some people. note As Wolfram and Hart's CEO, he can afford to keep himself in otter blood.
- Terms of Endangerment: Angelus calls Buffy "lover" and "Buff" numerous times, just to remind her how it happened.
- Thicker Than Water: Like it or not, Darla is the closest thing to family he has. Even his team comes second. In the Season Four finale, Angel agrees to mind wipe his team (and, in fact, the world) in exchange for saving Connor's life. Wesley is rightly steamed when he uncovers this.
- Think Nothing of It: Much-ridiculed by Spike, who sees it as a cheap act to impress women.
- Token Heroic Orc: For a long time he was the only heroic vampire around.
- Torture Technician: He has some experience in this area. The mere threat is enough make people talk.
"Sorry. I think my sense of humor is trapped in a jar somewhere."
Played By: Alexis Denisof
A replacement sent by the Watcher's Council following Giles' termination. Clean-cut, by the book, and not without an inflated sense of self, Wesley is immediately detested by both Buffy and Faith. Most of his decisions (though well-intentioned) fail spectacularly, such as his attempt to "rehabilitate" Faith when she goes rogue. Like Giles before him, the Council eventually tires of Wesley and lets him go. At a loose end, he became a "rogue demon hunter" himself, his travels eventually leading him to LA, where he joined Angel Investigations. As a former Watcher, Wesley is the resident demon expert. As the series progresses, he slowly becomes more assertive, confident - and dangerously smart.
- Abusive Parents: His father used to lock him in the cellar and generally belittled his son in every single way one can imagine.
- The Alcoholic
- An Arm and a Leg: His counterpart in the Skipverse is missing an arm, likely from the same demon who appeared in "Parting Gifts" (but without Angel to help him in this timeline). His fencing skills are still formidable, though.
- Badass Biker: Subverted in his first episode. Those leather pants really chafe his...legs.
- Badass Bookworm
- Badass Normal: He's possibly the most badass human on the series. One feels he could take on Angel with little problem if he were so inclined.
- Handicapped Badass: A zombified cop's bullet lands Wesley in a wheelchair for a while, but you don't need legs to load a shotgun! Then there's his Skipverse counterpart, who's a good fighter and formidable fencer with only one arm.
- Heartbroken Badass: There's no doubt about this one.
- Took a Level in Badass: In Buffy, he was a bumbling, stuffy guy who never disobeyed the rules. In his first episode of Angel, he wore a leather jacket and called himself a "Rogue Demon Hunter." Of course, he was still bumbling and didn't really become Badass until after his throat was cut — which also explains why he stopped shaving.
- Better as Friends: He and Cordelia come to this conclusion after the Mother of All Awkward Kisses.
- Brains and Bondage: Eek.
Who do we know that has handcuffs? Wes:
Well, I — ! ...wouldn't know
- British Stuffiness
- Captain Obvious
- Chekhov's Skill: Specifically, darts.
- Could Have Avoided This Plot: After his actions result in baby Connor getting trapped in Quor'toth during Angel season 3. After the damage is done, Fred flat-out tells him that if he had actually talked to the others about it, let alone never trusted Holtz, it never would have happened.
- Cruel to Be Kind: Wesley can be surprisingly ruthless, willingly sacrificing his allies or sending men to their deaths as part of a grand design. In his own words:
"You try not to get anybody killed, you wind up getting everybody killed."
- Cunning Linguist: With mixed results. You try arguing prophecy with a giant hamburger.
- Dating Catwoman: Lilah Morgan, whom he later beheaded. Ah, love.
- Deadpan Snarker: Very Britishly so.
Client: (upon learning she's not alone in having superpowers, turns to Cordelia) So what's wrong with you?
Wesley: Where to begin?
- Death Seeker: Whenever he's morally conflicted, Wesley is uncomfortably reckless with his own life.
- Died in Your Arms Tonight/Dies Wide Open: In the final raid on the Senior Partners, Wesley is assigned to take out Vail, the sorceror. Vail runs him through with a knife, and Illyria is left to tearfully cradle his body.
- Dogged Nice Guy: As creepily as the show can manage. When he's not being turned into a misogynist rage monster and attacking Fred, he's casually dropping death threats to Gunn, his romantic rival.
- Drowning My Sorrows: Develops an obsessive need for the juice to counter the melancholy of Fred's death. He is seldom entirely sober, as Spike sniffed out.
- Maybe not drowning, but he certainly takes his sorrows for a swim after his split from AI.
- Dynamic Character: We see glimpses of his dark side in Pylea (Season 2) and in an alternate universe where the team soldiers on without Cordelia (Season 3). His near-death experience changes him for the worse.
- Embarrassing Nickname: He was "Head Boy" at Academy.
- Wesley seems blissfully unaware of the connotations - which is understandable, as Head Boy (and Head Girl) is an extremely normal title in British schools.
- Emergency Impersonation: In the episode "Guise Will Be Guise", where he is forced to impersonate Angel. Right down to quaffing a glass of blood.
- Ensign Newbie: Wesley's only encounters with vampires thus far have been under "controlled circumstaces"; basically, he's in over his head from the get-go.
- Eureka Moment: Lampshaded by Angel.
Lorne: You mean he actually says "Eureka"?
- Exalted Torturer: He's awfully handy with a knife. Or scalpel. Or arrowhead.
"I avoided the major organs. He'll probably live."
- Extraverted Nerd: His character sheet entry reads, "Thinks he's Sean Connery when he's pretty much George Lazenby."
- Foil: To Giles. The curmudgeonly Watcher never forgot the grief he suffered under Wesley, as Andrew later reports in Season Five of Angel.
- Fanservice Pack
- Fatal Flaw: Mistrust of others, and compulsively hoarding every secret to himself.
- Fate Worse Than Death: His ghost is still stuck working for the Senior Partners in Hell.
- Fire-Forged Friends/Salt and Pepper: With Gunn in Angel Season Two.
- Geek Physiques
- Genius Bruiser
- The Glasses Gotta Go
- Good Is Dumb: The least trustworthy member on Angel's team is also the smartest. What are the odds?
- Played with. For one thing he's only the smartest if you don't count Fred, for another the reason he's untrustworthy is because he follows his own moral compass even when it conflicts with his loyalty to the team. In some ways he's actually the most moral and selfless of anyone on the team including Angel.
- Good Is Not Soft: Demonstrated this more and more as time went on, but there are hints as early as his appearances in Buffy.
- The Gunslinger: Type C: The Woo. Wes is generally the guy with guns, though Gunn and Fred occasionally use them. The showy moves are strictly his department, however.
- Guttural Growler: Justified in the aftermath of his throat-slitting. He adopts a sotto voice for the remainder of the show, and the scar remains visible for a long time.
- Hazy Feel Turn: Stealing Angel's baby, then going solo for a while.note
- Impossibly Cool Weapon: Collapsible wrist-mounted swords.
- Insistent Terminology: In his first Angel appearance, wants to make sure everyone knows that he's a rogue demon hunter.
Cordelia: What's a rogue demon?
- Intelligence Equals Isolation: It eventually came back to bite him in Season Three.
- Jacob Marley Apparel: In the comic, he is permanently-bound to one of his old Buffy-era suits. Wesley surmises the Senior Partners are just finding new ways to torment him some more, since the suit and glasses are a reminder of his past self that he left behind.
- Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Becomes fond of these after his Character Development sets in.
- Jaded Washout: In slow-motion. Wesley is basically the same guy from before the Watcher's Council fired him. On the other hand, he's not eager to rejoin those officious windbags, even when bribed. Over the course of years, he grows so detached from his old values that the demolition of the Council building doesn't even upset him.
- Klingon Promotion: Became Illyria's de facto consort after shooting the first one.
- The Klutz: In his early post-Buffy appearances. For the love of god, don't let him near an ax.
- The Lancer: When Fred is playing the Smart Guy role.
- Like Brother and Sister: With Cordelia.
- Miles Gloriosus: Famously gets conked out by a single punch during the Sunnydale High siege.
- Morality Chain: Resigns himself to helping Illyria be a good citizen, despite being a pretty lousy role model himself.
- Mr. Exposition: He's an ex-Watcher, seems to come with the territory.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Two big examples:
- When Faith begins to go rogue in Buffy season 3, Wesley, after finding out by eavesdropping on Buffy and Giles, calls in a special ops team and arrests her, unfortunately ruining Angel's plan to reach her just as he was beginning to get through to her and kicking off a series of events which leads to Faith becoming Mayor Wilkins' second-in-command. Buffy and the Scoobies already disliked him before, and he only further cements their hatred of him with this screw-up.
- Then, in Angel season 3, he's fooled by a fake prophecy that claims that Angel will murder his own son, and makes a deal with Angel's enemy Holtz to take him to safety, only for Holtz's second-in-command Justine to slit his throat and steal the baby herself, resulting in a sequence of events that led to Connor being trapped in the hell dimension Quor'toth, where he undergoes Training from Hell and emerges as an Ax-Crazy Antagonistic Offspring. Fake prophecy or not, Angel was understandably anything but pleased with Wesley.
- Angelus summed it up best:
Angelus: Good old Wes. Always count on him to tackle a bad situation and make it worse.
- Nothing Up My Sleeve: Again — Collapsible wrist-mounted swords.
- Obstructive Bureaucrat
- Our Ghosts Are Different: Brought back in After the Fall by the Senior Partners. This is doubly ironic, as Wesley is bound to a "standard perpetuity clause" in his contract, the same as Holland Manners and Lilah. Furthermore, he now serves as liaison to the Senior Partners, taking over from Hamilton (whom Angel killed in the series finale).
- Perma Stubble: After he Took a Level in Badass.
- Pragmatic Hero: "You try not to get anybody killed, you wind up getting everybody killed."
- Properly Paranoid: Wesley is never entirely at ease with a vampire boss, and is always preparing countermeasures against Angel's heel turn. His background as a former Watcher ensures this kind of thinking.
- Reality Ensues: Before he was assigned to be Buffy and Faith's Watcher, his only encounters with vampires were brief and, in his own words, "under controlled circumstances," arrogantly declaring himself to be capable in the field. Needless to say, when he gets in a real fight later on, he turns out to be completely useless and Giles has to save his ass.
- Refused by the Call: Wesley's fatal flaw has always been that he considers himself The Hero of the piece. From as early as B3 to as late as A4, Wes has trouble conceiving the basic notion that the story does not revolve around him. He takes it upon himself to make hard choices, and do make what he thinks are the right plays regardless of what others tell him, because at a fundamental level, he's certain that that burden of responsibility for saving the world and protecting everyone falls on his shoulders moreso than anyone else's. Basically every mistake he made through his entire character history has been rooted in this one flaw, from abducting Faith to stealing Angel's son.
- Replacement Flat Character: To Giles, who groans that Wes has "the emotional maturity of a blueberry scone."
- Screams Like a Little Girl: Buffy even lampshades it:
Buffy: If we need someone to scream like a woman, we'll give you a call.
- Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Wesley and Spike seemed to be shaping into this by the time the show was canceled.
- Shotguns Are Just Better: His trusty Mossberg 12-gauge. Manages to land only one hit with it, alas.
- Shipping Torpedo: Due to his own feelings for Fred, isn't particularly fond of her relationship with Gunn, and even less so of her semi-flirtation with Knox. He gets the girl in the end, though.
- The Smart Guy
- Spot of Tea: "You know, there's something about brewed tea you simply cannot replicate with a bag."
- Stalker with a Crush: Fred.
- Stalking Is Love: Fred goes for him in the end.
- Sugar and Ice Personality: He is this in spades after the events of season 3.
- Together in Death: In her final scene with Wesley, Illyira allows one selfless gesture by taking Fred's shape, then consoling Wesley that they will be together in the afterlife.
- Subverted (of course) in After the Fall, wherein Wesley is stuck working for the Senior Partners in Hell for all eternity.
- Too Clever by Half
- TV Genius
- Turn Coat
- The Unfettered: Wesley does what is right. It doesn't matter if he has to betray his friends, torture witnesses, sacrifice his chances with the woman he loves, shoot his father dead in cold blood, resurrect his friend's evil alter ego or risk his life and sacrifice his chance at a career to protect a woman who was sadistically torturing him hours before. If Wesley thinks he knows what is needed for the greater good, there is no emotional attachment he won't sacrifice, no anguish he won't suffer, no underhanded method he will not use to achieve it.
Angel: You do what you have to do to protect the people around you. To do what you know is right, regardless of the cost. You know, I never really understood that. You're the guy who makes all the hard decisions, even if you have to make 'em alone.
- Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Back in Buffy, he overheard that Faith accidentally killed someone. The rest of the team is already on-board with helping her deal with her issues and giving her the support and acceptance she needs in order to not fall to The Dark Side. Wesley's response, on the other hand, is to call in some goons and try to ship her to England to be locked away forever. By the end of the episode, she doesn't trust any of them, resents all of them (because she thinks they aren't trustworthy), and has taken a job as the Big Bad's number two.
- Weak, but Skilled
- We Used to Be Friends
Wesley: I have no idea where Angel is, Lilah, or what happened to him. And I really couldn't care.
Lilah: Wow. That was cold. I think we're finally making progress. Come on. Doesn't it bother you just a little bit? The not knowing?
Wesley: That part of my life is dead. Doesn't concern me now.
- Subverted: He was looking for Angel the whole time.
- Double Subverted: After he finds him, he still stays the hell away.
- Welcome Back, Traitor
- "Well Done, Son!" Guy: When he becomes the leader of Angel Investigations during Angel season 2, he calls his father up in the hopes on getting his approval... only to discover that dear ol' Dad is more concerned with when, what, and how he'll screw up next.
- The World's Expert on Getting Killed
- Zen Survivor: His new, grizzled look is a perfect fit for Los Angeles under permanent midnight. He gets even more philosophical when he's deep into the whiskey.
"Tact is just not saying true stuff. I'll pass."
Cordelia was the rich and popular queen
of Sunnydale High, until her parents were busted for tax evasion, subsequently losing everything. She moves to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career and joins up with Angel, encouraging him to set up a detective agency as a way to make ends meet (for her). Cordelia undergoes a huge amount of Character Development
during the series, going from a spoiled, selfish brat to a kind-hearted, selfless individual
- Action Girl: Becomes an effective one in Angel. In Buffy, she is not one, leaning more towards Action Survivor.
- Alliterative Name: Charisma Carpenter plays Cordelia Chase.
- All Women Love Shoes: Her passion for footwear is noted on several occasions.
- Alpha Bitch: Was definitely this while at Sunnydale during the first season. She eventually became the Lovable Alpha Bitch.
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Cordelia ascends to becomes a Power That Be, but was only chosen for the job because she had proved that the power wouldn't go to her head, and not once does she call herself a god. However, she is promptly fired when she uses her powers to help the gang. It's worth noting that all of this may have been a plot orchestrated by the season's big bad.
' Cordelia was chosen to become a higher being because she's such a pure, radiant saint. (scoffs) PLEASE!
- Back for the Dead In her Season Five appearance.
- Backhanded Compliment: Any time Cordy tries to be relatively nice, this is the result.
- Bad Bad Acting: Enough to make Angel nostalgic for Hell.
- She's often shown as being a fairly poor actress but, strangely, an excellent liar; capable of fooling even Angelus.
- Later Cordelia evolves into a capable actress; unfortunately, her read-throughs are invariably spoiled by a vision.
- Bad Liar: It's just as well that Cordy doesn't sugarcoat the truth, because she can't lie to save her life. The one exception is "Homecoming", when she convinced a vampire she was Faith the Vampire Slayer.
- Cordelia can lie to save her life, fooling even Angelus. Presumably on those occasions she doesn't 'think' about acting, and therefore seems more natural.
- Blessed with Suck: The visions which show people in trouble at the cost of extreme migraines that will eventually kill her.
- The Brainless Beauty: Was originally led to be this, but then she showed Hidden Depths. It was Lampshaded early in Season 3 when discussing the SAT:
"Actually, I'm looking forward to it. I do well on standardized tests." (beat
) "What? I can't have layers?"
- Brutal Honesty: "Tact is just not saying true stuff. I'll pass."
- Bullying a Dragon: Throughout the first season, she took every possible opportunity to pick on and insult Buffy despite full knowledge that she burned her last high school's gym down.
- Butt Monkey
- Cast from Lifespan: After she took on Doyle's visions. Humans aren't strong enough to handle the visions, and they began to cause her extensive brain damage to the extent that she chose to become a half-demon to survive and keep them.
- Character Development: Between the two series she goes from a shallow Alpha Bitch to someone who can realistically be said to be deserving of becoming one of The Powers That Be ( Gambit Roulette by Jasmine or not, she's proven herself time and time again) and it happened so gradually no one really noticed.
- Closet Geek: While working for Angel, she often made references to Star Wars and Star Trek. This could qualify as Hidden Depths, considering her treatment of outspoken nerds in high school.
- Comically Missing the Point: All too often, someone will make a remark and Cordelia will agree in some shallow, appearance-related fashion.
Xander: You're talking about messing with powerful magic, and you're weak.
Willow: I'm okay.
Xander: You don't look okay. (to Cordelia) Does she?
Cordelia: You should listen to him. The hair, it's so flat.
- Commuting on a Bus: She stops regularly appearing from season 3, episode 14 of Angel to her final episode in season 5. First she's on vacation with Groo, then she becomes a higher power, then she spends most of a season controlled by Jasmine until she gives "birth" to her, and then remains in a coma until she passes before the end of the series.
- Fainting Seer: Her visions are something akin to "having my skull cracked open and hot lava poured in." In fact, she's probably better described as a Shrieking, Twitching, Convulsing And Then Fainting Seer.
- Feminine Women Can Cook: Inverted Trope. Her brownies could qualify as nuclear waste.
- Finding Judas Unwittingly became Jasmine's corporeal agent on the Earth, gradually losing her entire personality in the process. It was so subtle that no one in Angel Investigations noticed until she was too forgone to save.
- Gang Of Bullies / Girl Posse: The Cordettes. Angel would later liken them to the KGB, but with nicer shoes. Cordelia's "friends" give her a taste of her own medicine when she starts to date Xander.
- Girl Friday: Though initially confined to the office, Cordelia becomes more proactive in cases after receiving the visions, which are often vague and require her to examine clues to make sense of it.
- She's an awful secretary, but her Money Fetish skills help keep Angel Investigations above water.
- Global Ignorance: "Oh, yesterday your cousin called, with one of those names from your part of England."
- Gold Digger:
- Thwarted by Doyle's gallantry, which starts making her dating pool look rather pathetic. Her date (a stock broker) cannonballs into his Beamer and races off at first sight of a vamp without the slightest hesitation in leaving Cordie behind to be eaten.
"All I could think about was: if this wimp ever saw a monster he'd probably throw a shoe at it and run like a weasel! Turns out the shoe part was giving him too much credit
- Cordelia contemplates marrying incredibly rich and lonely geek David Nabbit, but accepts that even she has limits.
- Good Is Not Nice: Not quite as tactless and rude as she was in her Buffy debut, but she can still be very sharp-tongued.
- The Heart: Increasingly so as time passes, especially after the first-season finale "To Shanshu in L.A." Fred calls her this at one point.
- Heroic Fatigue: As a human, Cordelia was not meant to shoulder the responsibility of Doyle's visions ("a big cosmic whoops", as Skip calls it). She secretly takes powerful painkillers and undergoes CAT scans that indicate the slow deterioration of her brain. Yet when presented with the opportunity to pass her visions onto someone else (the gallant Groosalugg, and later Angel in an alternate reality), Cordelia refuses, stating that the visions are a part of her and make her who she is.
- Hidden Depths: Even prior to Character Development, Cordelia was much more than the stereotypical Alpha Bitch she appeared to be. She frequently showed herself to be an intelligent and begrudgingly compassionate person.
"You think I'm never lonely because I'm so cute and popular? I can be surrounded by people and be completely alone. It's not like any of them really know me. I don't even know if they like me half the time. People just want to be in a popular zone. Sometimes when I talk, everyone's so busy agreeing with me, they don't hear a word I say."
- Holy Backlight: Whilst twiddling her thumbs in the afterlife.
- Horrible Judge of Character: Two examples while working with Angel:
- When Harmony comes to town, Cordelia continues to trust her and demand that her friends give her a fair chance even after discovering she is a vampire, dismissing Angel's warnings that vampires are Always Chaotic Evil and can't be trusted. He's proven right when she sides with the vampire cult she was supposed to be helping A.I. investigate.
- Then, when Darla shows up pregnant with Angel's child, Cordelia readily defends her from Angel and tries to keep her comfortable, which comes back to bite her (literally) when Darla attacks her. After Angel comes in and saves her, Cordelia even acknowledges that she blew it.
- Important Haircut: Several. The most notable one is her blonde makeover, which remains even after her return from the afterlife (possibly a Call Back to Buffy's return from heaven on BtVS) — soon to darken back to its original color when Jasmine possesses her.
- Intimate Marks: She has a tattoo on her back, right directly above her rear. It's the actress's real tattoo, but we've seen it onscreen on the shows a few times.
- Lady of War: Following a few lessons in swordsmanship by Angel.
- Living Bodysuit: Revealed in Season 4 to be acting under the control of Jasmine.
- Mandatory Line: Most of the time her role in Season One was just to appear, act bitchy, then leave.
- Mean Character, Nice Actor: Charisma Carpenter is noted for her many outreaches to fans, most prominent of which is that, unlike most of her co-stars, she absolutely refuses to charge for an autograph at any convention she attends.
- Put on a Bus: To L.A.! She then gets put on a bus several times over the course of Angel.
- Rich Bitch: Until her parents go down for tax evasion. She starts the spin-off series as an impoverished wannabe actress.
- Riches to Rags: When her father loses all his money to the IRS.
- Romantic False Lead: Angel immediately ends up in her crosshairs. Luckily, Angel later confesses that he always found the noblewomen of his era (for whom Cordelia is the modern avatar) to be a horrific bore.
- Second Love: Ironic, since Angel used to find the noblewomen of his era (of whom Cordelia is a modern avatar) to be a horrific bore but Cordelia immediately had a crush on him on Buffy so it's keeping in continuity.
- Secretly Dying: Since the visions were intended for demons, they begin to physically damage her brain. Skip circumvents this by turning her half-demon.
- Ship Tease: With Wesley, which ends abruptly and hilariously upon their first kiss, when they realise their complete lack of sexual tension. And with Angel in the spin-off series. Tragically their first kiss (that can't be put down to magical influence) is their last one.
- Sitcom Archnemesis: To Buffy, who used to have the Alpha Bitch role before she became the Slayer and was forced to develop some character. Sometimes however (e.g. "Homecoming") their rivalry in this area comes out into the open.
- Skewed Priorities: Though they become less skewed over the years.
- Team Mom: Lampshaded once a baby enters the picture.
- The Thing That Would Not Leave: Cordelia in "Rm w/a Vu". Within a few hours, Angel's basement is covered wall-to-wall with Cordelia's trophies, there's peanut butter on his bed, his leather chair is ruined, and Cordelia is busily cutting up his linoleum floor to examine the hardwood.
- Those Two Guys: Usually ends up as Giles's research partner while Buffy, Xander, Willow, and Oz are out on patrol. Hilarity Ensues.
- Threshold Guardian: Provides an example of a non-adversarial Threshold Guardian; when she invites Buffy to join the popular girls' clique, she forces Buffy to choose between her calling as the Slayer and her desire to be a popular girl.
- Took a Level in Kindness: Zig Zagged in Season Three when Xander cheats on her, effectively ousting her from the Gang. Cordelia attempts to return to her old ways, but Harmony has usurped her position and shut the door. Cordelia returns to aid the Scoobies in the Season Three Finale. Her move to Angel cements her growth as a caring person.
- Took A Level In Smartass: While the penultimate episode of the first season revealed Cordelia wasn't quite the airhead she seemed, she still seemed of relatively average intelligence. It was only in season three that she was offically established (or retconned) as being very bright (see the quote under Brainless Beauty above.)
- Waiting for a Break: In the first and second seasons.
I think it's refreshing to see a woman living like this, you know. It means you're not so uptight, you live for the moment— (steps in a bowl of oatmeal) You're disgusting
- Weakness Turns Her On: The possibility of intimacy with Angel doesn't comes up until Cordelia glimpses a world in which she never joined the agency. This resulted in Angel inheriting Doyle's visions instead, causing him to go mad.
- Weirdness Magnet: Possibly caught the condition living in Sunnydale.
- Woman in Black: While under Jasmine's control.
- Woman in White: After ascendeding.
- Women Prefer Strong Men: Hanging around Angel and Doyle has ruined her for preening, rich day trader types. (No comment on Wesley.)
- You Are Worth Hell: Literally, and on multiple occasions.
"Notice no matter how uptown we go we always wind up at some stanky hole in the middle of the night?"
Played By: J. August Richards
Orphaned at a young age, Gunn finds himself living on the streets of LA and fighting vampires to survive, eventually forming his own crew of youths from similar backgrounds. After Angel helps the crew out in a turf war against a gang of vampires, Gunn in turn helps Angel and co. in a number of situations, slowly moving away from the streets and becoming a part of Angel Investigations. Street-wise and an accomplished fighter, Gunn nevertheless harbours insecurities that he is nothing more than 'dumb muscle.'
Krevlornswath "Lorne" of the Deathwok Clan, also known as The Host
"Always leave 'em wanting more, kiddo. That's the rule."
"So I am covered in cherries. The police are just pounding on the door, and Judi Dench starts screaming, "Oh, that's way too much to pay for a pair of pants!""
Demonic nightclub owner with the face of Quentin Tarantino
, and the dress sense of Liberace
. Born in another dimension, Lorne rejected its Proud Warrior Race Guy
culture, becoming a pariah. He was overjoyed, then, when he fell into a portal and found himself in Los Angeles. Setting up a karaoke bar on the spot, he brands it a sanctuary, where violence between demons is impossible. Lorne is an empath
, who can read people's destinies when they bare their souls — that is, when they sing. He uses this to help people by setting them on their true path. Lorne tries to maintain a neutral stance, but finds himself being drawn into Angel Investigations and eventually becomes a full-fledged member of the team.
- Actual Pacifist: To the extent that killing Lindsey McDonald under Angel's orders, an act the complete opposite of his pacifistic nature, is one of the implied reasons he developed cancer in recent comics.
- Amazing Technicolor Population: Green skin with red horns. He is from another dimension.
- And There Was Much Rejoicing: When he disappeared from Pylea, everyone feasted for weeks because they assumed he had committed ritual suicide.
- Anything That Moves: Something of a G-rated version of this trope; he flirts shamelessly with guys and girls alike, but never appears to have a genuine romantic or sexual attraction to anyone. Andy Hallett Hand Waves this by merely stating that Lorne loves "all humans".
- Bizarre Demon Biology: Mentions that his heart is located in his rear.
- Beware the Nice Ones: He darkens quite a bit when Fred is put in jeopardy. To say nothing of his final scene.
- Bi the Way: Lorne seems to fit this (or Have I Mentioned I Am Heterosexual Today?). He's definitely into girls; however, he also is fond of the thought of Angel in leather pants, and freely refers to him as "lover", "sweetie" and scores of other romantic endearments. Lorne also is interested in fashion, culture, art, music and Elton John. He also has a somewhat flamboyantly, stereotypically gay personality. However, his sexuality has never been addressed directly in the show, and the actor considered the character asexual.
- The Character Died with Him: Following Andy Hallett's death, his character was retired in a self-titled, one-shot comic.
- Cleopatra Nose
- The Confidant
- The Dandy: To paraphrase Mayor Wilkins on Buffy: That is one exciting suit!
- A Day in the Limelight: "Life of the Party"
- Dark Is Not Evil: He's a green-skinned, red-eyed interdimensional demon from a Proud Warrior Race... and the White Sheep of his clan.
- Deadpan Snarker
- De Fictionalization: Lorne headlines a Las Vegas show in one episode. This was done by having Lorne headline a show in Las Vegas, and filming it.
- Drink Order: "More Sea, less Breeze."
- Embarrassing First Name: His full name is "Krevlornswath" in his native dimension, and even he isn't too fond of the shortened nickname. (He has green skin, which apparently made some people think of Lorne Greene from Bonanza, though out of the members of Angel Investigations, only Angel gets the reference).
- The Empath: And about as reliable as a cheap fortune cookie.
- Everyone Calls Him Barkeep: He was originally just called "The Host," stating that he preferred not to go by Lorne because his green skin would cause people to crack Lorne Greene jokes.
- Fun Personified
- Hates the Job, Loves the Limelight: Inverted. As head of the W&H Entertainment Division, Lorne is bogged down with so much work that he has to surgically remove his sleep — and even then he still can't catch up. It becomes clear that it's Lorne's way of assuming his old Caritas role and bringing people together, even at great self-sacrifice.
- Have I Mentioned I Am a Dwarf Today?: Subverted; Lorne doesn't mind it at all if people mistake his green skin for makeup. Especially if it gets him into Caesar's Palace. The first time this happens, he accidentally runs into a librarian who stammers, "You're—...you're—!!" before sighing, "...from the children's reading program!" At this, Lorne considers dropping by and reading some Harry Potter.
- Heroic Sacrifice: Sacrifices his corporeal body by leaping into the Music of the Spheres, thereby restoring balance to the universe. At least he went out singing.
- I Need a Freaking Drink: Our Lady of the Perpetual Sea Breeze.
- Immigrant Patriotism: As soon as he heard Aretha Franklin's voice, he knew he was home.
- Incredibly Long Note: Once claimed he can hold a note literally forever.
- Klingon Scientists Get No Respect: On Pylea, for not wanting to be a warrior.
- Losing Your Head: He can survive decapitation and being cut apart, but only if his body parts aren't then mutilated.
- Lorne keeps this small detail about himself secret, apparently so as to gauge his friends' grief-stricken reactions to his 'death'. (He isn't impressed with any of them.)
- Lounge Lizard
- Love You and Everybody: His actor states that Lorne loves "all humans," thus explaining his ambiguous sexuality.
- Meaningful Name: On Lorne's homeworld, they drink "Flib liquor," humans are "cows", and they clean out "flehegna" stables. Maybe his nickname was apt.
- Mentor: Sort of.
- Mr. Exposition
- Musical Assassin: He can make stuff explode by hitting just the right note.
- My Species Doth Protest Too Much
- Nice Guy
- Noble Demon: There's plenty of benign demons in the Buffyverse, but Lorne goes above and beyond the call of duty. His club, Caritas (Latin for "sanctuary") was specifically designed to bring human and demonkind together peacefully.
- OOC Is Serious Business: Lorne's the smiling, happy, carefree member of the team. When he begins to crack in Season 5, it's a sign that everything's about to fall apart. He never really recovers.
- Opt Out: In the series finale.
- Out of Focus: In Season Five, Andy Hallett probably spent more time in the makeup chair than he did in front of the camera. On the upside, Lorne did get his own episode (see above) and was featured in the final stretch.
- The Paladin: Of all the characters in either Buffy or Angel, it is Lorne who is the most morally pure, and the most morally inspirational. If you don't sort of wish you could be a little bit more like him, you have no soul in you at all.
- Paper-Thin Disguise: An overcoat and a trilby, which looks dashing in a Humphrey Bogart-sort of way, but about as inconspicuous as a Ninja Turtle.
- A baseball cap and sunglasses are enough to disguise him in broad daylight.
- Person as Verb: Originally known simply as "The Host."
- The Power of Rock: Karaoke is the only way to put things right!
- Promotion to Opening Titles: At long last partway into Season Four.
- Psychic Powers: He can read people's futures. Allegedly only when they sing, but there have been plenty of occasions when he's read people who aren't singing. Each time he brushes it off as them broadcasting unusually strongly because of their emotional state. It happens frequently. He can also mystically sense when Cordelia is about to receive a vision and has the ability to surf her connection to the Powers That Be and tap into her visions as a result. He needs to be touching Cordelia to do this latter but he's even able to tell when Cordelia's being sent fake visions from an earth-based psychic and indicates that it requires genuine skill to be able to work that out as the fakes were very convincing.
- Red Baron: Ends up becoming one the more benign demon "lords" of L.A. after it is banished to Hell. Lorne is elected the Lord of Silver Lake, and does his very best to make his territory "a Heaven in Hell". (After the Fall)
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: He's got red eyes because he's a demon, but he's a gentle soul who's pretty sweet and fun company.
- Sad Clown: His perpetual comic persona starts turning into this in Season Five, mostly after Fred dies. He even gets a whole scene talking about this in "Underneath."
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: After being told his part in Angel's take-down-the-Black-Thorns plan, he tells Angel that he would do it for the sake of their friendship, but after that, he was done and they would most likely never see him again.
- Sensor Character
- Shipper on Deck: Leads the movement to pair off Angel and Cordelia. You can't fight love, Cinnamon Buns!
- Some Call Me Tim
- Soundtrack Dissonance: You are my sunshine, my only sunshine... ♪
- Averted. The lyrics fit the scene exactly. Though the tune is generally considered happy, it is about the listener leaving the singer, and taking all the joy in his life with.
- Spiky Hair
- Took a Level in Badass: His last scene. Interestingly, it is obvious that Lorne finds the act disgusting and demoralising; afterwards, he walks out on the team without so much as a goodbye.
- The Unfavorite: His cousins use their empathic powers to hunt. Lorne used his to read peoples' destinies, and was considered a freak. He preferred music over hunting, even though music doesn't really exist in his dimension.
- Verbal Tic: Whenever Lorne finishes a sentence he refers to the person he's talking to as some kind of endearment, often a foodstuff: Pumpkin, Angel-cakes, Kiwi, Sweet potato, Muffin.
- "And stop calling me pastries!
- This extends to curses, as well. "Aw, fudgesicle!"
- Back on Pylea they used to call him "fragrant tuber".
- Backfires when Lorne telephones a coded message for help ("Say 'hi' to Fluffy for me!"), which Fred interprets as just another nickname for someone in Angel's group.
- Or Harmonica/Harmonita, in Harmony's case.
- White Sheep: To the rest of his clan.
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: While running Caritas, he firmly believed that anyone, human or demon, could turn their lives around if given sufficient guidance, and thus allowed everyone, even baby-eating demons, entry.
- You Can't Go Home Again: Parodied when Angel drags him kicking and screaming to Pylea. Learns nothing, accomplishes nothing, goes back home. The end.
"I had to come back here to find out I didn't
have to come back here. I don't belong
here, I hate
it here! You know where I belong? L.A.
You know why? Nobody
belongs there. It's the perfect place for guys like us."
- Well, he did get closure. That's something, at least.
Winifred "Fred" Burkle
"Can I say somethin' about destiny? Screw destiny!"
Played By: Amy Acker
Fred: Handsome man saved me from the monsters.
Fred was attending college in Los Angeles when she was sucked into a portal and ended up in a demon dimension where humans are slaves. She's there for five years and rather insane before Angel and crew rescue her. Staying with them, she slowly re-adapts to life and becomes a valued member of the team, her incredible intelligence causing her to serve as the brains of the outfit.
- A-Cup Angst: Played with. In one episode when the cast was mentally regressed back to early high school, she seems disappointed with how much she's "filled out" in her adult body. She never comments on it again.
Fred: Wait, is there someone else? What—what's her name?
Gunn: Her name is "I'm a real woman, not a stick figure." Get the picture?
- Action Girl
- Adorkable: Just watch her try to role play as a vampire: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QklpcFw9khs&feature=related
- Badass Adorable
- Badass Bookworm
- Badass Normal
- Beware the Nice Ones
- Big Eater: Capable of eating her own body weight in waffles.
- Bored With Insanity
- Brainy Brunette
- The Chick
- Cloudcuckoolander: When she first returns from Pylea. She gets better.
- Cool Big Sis: Tries to act as one to Connor. It works when he's in a good mood and she's not torturing him for going after Angel.
- Cruel and Unusual Death: Hollowed out and turned into a shell for a gestating demon. All of her internal organs slowly and painfully liquify, including her brain.
- Cute and Psycho: These tendencies are never completely gone — just dormant.
- Curiosity Killed the Cast: If she hadn't gotten so curious over Illyria's sarcophagus, she'd still be alive.
- Deader Than Dead: Verified by Illyria in the Season Six comics. There's nothing left no matter how much everybody (including, oddly, the God-King herself) wishes. Just the memory of who she was.
- Dangerously Short Skirt: In contrast to her shy innocent demeanor; but it does fit with the suggestion that she's Naughty by Night.
- Former Teen Rebel: "It'd be cooler if we could score some weed, though!"
- Geeky Turn-On: You have no idea. (Probably too many to list.)
- Gibbering Genius: Though she's good-natured enough to backpedal a bit in her speeches. Even when describing how she's about to kill someone!
- Girl with Psycho Weapon: The writers seemed to be competing with each other to see what loony item Fred holds next. Crossbow? Automatic scythe trap? Sniper rifle? Flamethrower?
The halberd could work. Acting like I'm all addle-brained talking about other dimensions. (mocking
) Pylea? Never heard of it! (angry
) Right. How 'bout a flail-whipping? Would that take a nice long time? Angel
: Hours, if you do it right. — Not that you should do it at all
. (takes whip from her
- Girls Love Stuffed Animals: Feigenbaum, the "Master of Chaos"!
- Good Parents: Who doesn't love Roger and Trish?
- She herself also acts as one to Connor while Angel and Cordy are imprisoned by him and become a Higher Power, respectively.
- Good with Numbers: Which once almost resulted in her brain being stolen.
- The Heart: She holds the crew together emotionally. It...eventually breaks her Stepford Smiler facade.
- Hot Librarian/Hot Scientist
- Ill Girl: "A Hole in the World".
- Improbable Aiming Skills: Downplayed, but her shooting skills were enough that she was able to shoot Angel through Jasmine. She's also been pretty handy with a crossbow in other appearances, but this takes the cake.
- The Ingenue
- Is This What Anger Feels Like?
- Kill the Cutie
- Living Bodysuit: See below, re:Illyria
- Meganekko: Whenever she dons the glasses.
- Minored In Ass Kicking
- Moe Stare: See picture.
- Ms. Fixit
- Naughty by Night: According to Angelus, anyway.
- No Social Skills: She did live in Pylea for a few years.
- Omnidisciplinary Scientist: She's a physicist by trade; she just happens to also be good at anything else. In Season Five, she is elevated to The Coroner, because why not?
- The Pollyanna
- Robinsonade: "I've been trying to make an enchilada out of tree bark."
- Room Full of Crazy: The astrophysics formulas on her cave wall, and later hotel room. Lampshaded ever-after by Gunn and Wes, who never quite let Fred live it down.
- Ship Tease: Developed a schoolgirl-like crush on Angel, but later got past it.
- Shrinking Violet
- Stepford Smiler: Cheery is her default mode, but after 5 years in Hell, her friends falling apart and all the responsibilities falling on her...she starts to break apart until she snaps in "Ground State" when Gunn almost dies and again in "Supersymmetry" when she finds the one responsible for her 5 years in Hell. She decides as soon as she finds out that he has to die.
- The Smart Girl
- Southern-Fried Genius
- Team Mom: Becomes the de facto one after Cordelia dies.
- Token Good Teammate
- Tomboyish Name
- Too Good for This Sinful Earth
- Trademark Favorite Food: Tacos. (One notable difference about Pylea is its conspicuous absence of Tex-Mex.)
Fred: Are - are you sure about that?
Cordelia: Trust me. Tacos everywhere. ...And soap.
- Unkempt Beauty: It takes her a while to rediscover civilization.
- Weak, but Skilled: Happens only rarely, but when Fred pulls a fast one, her ingenuity will leave you dizzy.
- Wide-Eyed Idealist
- Wrench Wench
"You gotta do what you can to protect your family. I learned that from my father."
Played By: Vincent Kartheiser
Against all laws of the universe, Angel and his sire Darla conceive a son
and the result is Connor, who is super-strong, agile, has enhanced senses and healing and is, by all appearances, human. Taken away to another dimension, the Quor-Toth, as a baby, Connor returns a few months later. Due to time flowing differently there
, he is now seventeen years old, and an incredible fighter. Harboring a deep hatred for Angel's true nature, Connor is at odds with Angel Investigation just as often as he is fighting alongside them.
Spike, neé William Pratt
"I may be love's bitch, but at least I'm man enough to admit it."
British vampire who served as the villain for early Season 2. Was planned to die, but his popularity saved him. He showed up in one episode in Season 3 before returning for good in Season 4. Had a chip in his head that prevented him from hurting humans, so he joined up with the Scoobies for survival and so he could get his kicks by fighting demons. Eventually fell in love with Buffy, and had a twisted relationship with her in Season 6. Got a soul at the end of Season 6 and made a Heroic Sacrifice
in the finale. Reappeared on Angel
- Brutal Honesty: When Buffy tries to fool herself, Spike lays it out straight.
- Casual Kink: Is into chains with Drusilla, dress-up games with Harmony, and introduces Buffy to bondage. The sexual enjoyment he gets from slugging it out with Buffy is lampshaded in several episodes.
- Closet Geek: While the Scoobies are holding him hostage in Season 4, his biggest concern is missing the next episode of Passions.
- Closet Sublet: With Anya gone, Spike ignominiously moves into a 'spare room' in Xander's apartment.
- Clothes Make the Legend/Iconic Item: His original trenchcoat gets burned to tatters but Wolfram & Hart immediately supplies him with eleven exact duplicates of the coat.
- Combat Sadomasochist: Lampshaded on several occasions, most notably when Spike makes his Anguished Declaration of Love.
Joyce: Honey, did you somehow, unintentionally, lead him on in any way? Send him signals?
Buffy: Well, I do beat him up a lot. For Spike, that's like third base.
- The Confidant: For Buffy in the first half of Season 6.
- Cool Airship: We don't know where he got it, but it is awesome.
- Cool Bike: That he stole from a demon biker in Season 6.
- Cultured Badass: Can quote Henry V with the best of them. "We band of buggered."
- Deadpan Snarker: His parody of a conversation between Angel and a Distressed Damsel in "In the Dark" is awesomely hilarious.
- Depending on the Writer: Spike's level of evilness after being chipped seems to depend on who's writing him. Borders on Heel-Face Revolving Door. This is also the case with how smart he is.
- Didn't Think This Through: In the final episodes of Season 4, he schemes to break up the Scoobies by exploiting the existing tensions between the group, and then planting evidence to lure Buffy into a trap as part of Adam's plan. However, after all is said and done, Adam points out that Spike gave Willow said evidence, and Willow won't be speaking to Buffy now; Spike quickly goes out to rectify it.
- Don't You Dare Pity Me!: In Season 4, Willow and Xander take him along with them while going to prevent an apocalypse to prevent him from staking himself. Spike thanks them by taunting and insulting them, blatantly stating that he doesn't want pity from people who he perceives to be even more useless than he is.
- Embarrassing Nickname: "William the Bloody" actually refers to his bloody awful poems, not blood drinking.
- Environmental Symbolism: A sign saying BEWARE OF DOG is shown behind Spike on several occasions.
- Entitled Bastard: After being chipped and pursued by the Initiative, he fully expects Buffy and the Scoobies to help him despite being one of their worst enemies at the time.
- Eternal Love: What he hoped he had with Drusilla. Then they had a falling out.
- Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: William's hope was to live in blissful trinity with his vampirized mum and Drusilla (to Dru's consternation). The Plan went sour when his mum promptly tried to molest him.
- Even Evil Has Standards:
- Spike has a low tolerance for "poseur" vampires who act above their station, believing they give the undead a bad name. Contrary to his love of brawling, he's also adverse to wanton destruction; Spike enjoys the good life and isn't going to let Angelus destroy the world if he can help it.
- He genuinely liked Buffy's mother, and is upset at her death.
- Evil Brit: At first. Now he's more of an anti-heroic Brit.
- Evil Is Petty: He nonchalantly grabs Xander's radio when packing up to leave Xander's apartment. When Xander calls him on this, Spike replies, "And you're what, shocked and disappointed? I'm evil!"
- Eviler Than Thou: At the very end of his debut episode, he personally kills the Anointed One and takes command of the remnants of the Order of Aurelius.
Spike: From now on, we're gonna have a little less ritual and a little more fun around here!
- Expansion Pack Past: It comes as a surprise to learn his entire persona is a lie. "Spike" is really William Pratt, a wimpy poet who was considered the runt of his original pack.
- Faux Affably Evil: Before getting chipped. Comparing him to Mayor Wilkins is a good lesson in the difference between Affably Evil and Faux Affably Evil.
- Four-Temperament Ensemble: Sanguine (In Angelus' old vampire gang.)
- Freudian Excuse: Two of them.
- The first was Spike siring his mother, who he adored, only for her to try and seduce him as a vampire, leading to him being forced to stake her. Naturally this would be very traumatic and likely sent him off the rails.
- The second is Angelus. It's been discussed in the show that Angelus made Spike evil and Spike hated that Angelus did so in order for there to be someone as disgusting as he was before as Liam and after as a vampire.
- From Nobody to Nightmare: Much like Liam, "William the Bloody" was a pretty unremarkable human being.
- Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: Trope Namer, though it was on Angel and he was being sarcastic. Unlike Angel, he gets roped into saving people by a fork-tongued Lindsey McDonald, attorney at law.
- Fully-Embraced Fiend: To better contrast with Angel. The soul leads to insane ranting, self-mutilation and at least one Suicide by Cop attempt, but he never particularly angsts about being in a vampire body.
- Genius Bruiser: He might not know all that science stuff and whatnot, but he's as smart and as analytical as he is strong.
- The Glasses Got To Go: Needed them while alive, but tossed them afterward. His appearance gradually became more unkempt as he worked to build his reputation as a real killer - a street-fighting vampire.
- Go Out with a Smile: In the final episode of season 7. Even as his flesh and muscle is being toasted off and the Hellmouth is crumbling around him, Spike still smirks and laughs as he crumbles to dust.
- Good Is Not Nice: Saves a woman from a vampire in a dark alley in "Soul Purpose", and then chews her out for being dumb enough to walk through an alley alone at night.
- Guilty Pleasures: Dawson's Creek and Passions.
- Hannibal Has a Point: Spike's legendary "Love's Bitch" speech in Season 3:
You're not "friends." You'll never
be friends. You'll be in love 'til it kills you both. You'll fight, and you'll shag and you'll hate each other 'til it makes you quiver, but you'll never be friends. Love isn't brains, children, it's blood. Blood screaming inside you to work its will. I may be love's bitch, but at least I'm man enough to admit it
- Buffy even acknowledges this later:
Buffy: I can fool my friends. I can even fool Giles. But I can't fool myself... or Spike, for some reason.
- Heartbroken Badass: In season 3, when Drusilla breaks up with him.
- Heel-Face Turn: Slowly over the course of four seasons.
- Heel Realization: Oddly occurs well after his Heel Face Door Slam. A deranged Slayer kidnaps and tortures him, mistaking Spike for a man who tormented her during her childhood. At the end, Spike realizes it didn't matter that he never laid a finger on the girl, because he'd done plenty worse to other people.
- Hero Killer: He's killed two past Slayers, a fact he takes much pride in.
- Heroic Sacrifice: In the Buffy Grand Finale he dies keeping the Hellmouth closed. He gets better.
- Hero with an F in Good: In seasons 5 and 6, he frequently falls into this trope, often doing things not because it's right but because it's what Buffy would want.
Spike: I'm not sampling, I'll have you know. Just look at all these lovely blood-covered people. I could, but not a taste for Spike, not a lick. Knew you wouldn't like it.
Spike: Well, yeah.
Buffy: You're disgusting.
- It starts back in season 4, when he's "forced" by his condition (he only could hurt monsters, but not humans) to fight alongside the good guys.
Spike: What's this? Sitting around watching the telly while there's evil still afoot? It's not very industrious of you. I say, we go out there, and kick a little demon ass. What, can't go without your Buffy? Is that it? Too chicken? Let's find her. She is the Chosen One, after all. Come on! Vampires! Grrr! Nasty. Let's annihilate them. For justice, and for the safety of puppies, and Christmas, right? Let's fight that evil. Let's kill something. Oh, come on!
- He's Back: Spike gets more than one.
- When he discovers he can hurt demons, he promptly cuts loose and beats the shit out of one.
Spike: That's right! I'm back, and I'm a BLOODY ANIMAL! YEAH!!
- In "Get It Done," he has a pretty epic one, complete with the return of the Badass Longcoat.
- Hidden Depths: He's surprisingly good at predicting Willow's behavior.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: In Season 9, he wants Buffy to have as normal a life as possible and is avoiding any romantic entanglement with her because of it. He even says he would be thrilled if Detective Dowling wanted to date her. Both Dowling and Eldre Koh can tell that he's still carrying a torch.
- Iron Butt Monkey: There's an entire video here detailing how often Spike gets his ass handed to him by just about everyone in the cast.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: After his Heel-Face Turn, he's still an asshole but he's heroic now.
- Knight of Cerebus: When Spike comes crashing through the Sunnydale welcome sign, gets out of his car and says "Home sweet home", it marks the beginning of a storyline that takes the entire series in a darker direction.
- Momma's Boy: He turned his mother into a vamp so they can be together forever. It's also the root of his attraction to Drusilla, his sire.
- Mr. Fanservice: Moreso than even Mr. Boreanaz, given his tendency for the Walking Shirtless Scene.
- Musical Trigger: The First takes control of Spike with the folk song "Early One Morning," which Spike's mother often sang to him when he was human.
- Not Even Bothering with an Excuse: In "Triangle," he brushes off Xander's request that he try to fight Olaf the Troll because he's "paralyzed by not caring very much."
- Not-So-Harmless Villain: Near the end of Season 4. The Scoobies are firmly convinced that Spike, due to his Restraining Bolt, is no longer a threat... until he proves them wrong by manipulating the existing tensions within the group and turning them against one another.
- Not So Different: To Buffy — they love to fight (and when forced to fight together, cooperate instinctively), refuse to be bound by tradition, and seem addicted to doomed unconventional relationships. Spike pushes this line when trying to court Buffy in Season 5 and 6; unfortunately he's repeating all of Angel's courting tricks but failing to make an impression, either because he's Comically Missing the Point or due to Buffy's refusal to acknowledge this trope.
- Not Worth Killing: In season 4's "Doomed," Xander, during his "The Reason You Suck" Speech, remarks that, though he knows that he could easily kick Spike's ass as a result of his being chipped, he's so pathetic right now that he's not worth the effort.
- Odd Friendship: With Joyce. The two shared several hot chocolate moments together and talk about Series/Passions.
- Only Sane Man: Quickly assumes he's this when Glory's spell makes everyone forget Glory is Ben every time he explains it to them.
- Open Mouth, Insert Foot: Does this often when he's trying to court Buffy.
- Our Ghosts Are Different: Temporarily turned incorporeal after he burns up in the Hellmouth. Angel's amulet brings him back as a ghost, though one that is radiating heat.
- Quizzical Tilt: His Character Tic is this.
- Real Men Wear Pink: He knows that he's man enough to admit that he's love's bitch. He's not just saying it too. He's one bad vampire.
- Despite being ready to deride Angel as a prancing poof, he's got an affinity for poetry, gothic jewelry and black nail polish.
- Rebel Relaxation: When you're a ghost, there's not much else to do but kick back and annoy the hell out of Angel.
- Red Baron: When Hell-A is split up between various demon "Lords", Spike crowns himself Lord of Beverly Hills. (After the Fall)
- Reformed, but Rejected: Even after his attempts at redemption, he is almost never really trusted by the Scoobies, who continually hound him with abuse and scorn. On the other hand, 120 years of him killing for fun. Plus, when he was originally forced to beg for their help, he spent a lot of time telling them how much he hated them and how he was going to kill them all, first chance he got. The abuse and scorn wasn't exactly one-sided. Even when he started trying to be what Buffy wanted, some of his attempts were... off, and the gang knew quite well that he was motivated by feelings for Buffy rather than a genuine desire for redemption. There's a difference. Even if he was planning not to repeat his past evil actions, he didn't actually feel remorse for them. Speaking pre-Season Seven.
- Reminiscing About Your Victims: Is fond of recalling the Slayers he has killed.
- Restraining Bolt: Once the Initiative puts a chip in his head, he was unable to kill the living.
- Retcon: Angel being his sire and that he respected him. Flashbacks show Drusilla sired him and that he and Angel were always at each other's throats. Word of God expains this by saying that vamps refer to anyone in their bloodline before them as their sire, so Spike would refer to Darla and The Master as his sires too.
- The Rival:
- To Angel, as revenge for all those times Angelus humiliated him and stole his girlfriend. Then the Shanshu prophecy mentions a vampire with a soul, not Angel specifically.
- He butted heads with Riley on frequent occasions.
- Saying Too Much: After his Yoko Factor plan successfully splits up the Scoobies during season 4, Spike has a subsequent encounter with Buffy and mentions her falling out with her friends; as he wasn't actually there when the Scoobies had their big fight, Buffy puts two-and-two together and realizes that Spike set them up.
- Sir Swears-a-Lot: Some of this is due to Did Not Do the Bloody Research, but it's also a character trait.
- Smoking Is Cool: Smokes Morley cigarettes and looks badass doing it.
- Sour Supporter: After being chipped, he helps but he hates it. He becomes a more enthusiastic Scoobie after falling in love with Buffy.
- Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Like it or not, Spike eventually became the center of gravity for the entire cast. This started out gradually, kicking into overdrive once Marti Noxon took the helm. There's a reason it's just him and Buffy on the Season 7 box.
- Stalker with a Crush: How he acts initially after falling in love with Buffy.
- The Starscream: First to the Anointed One, then to Angelus, both successfully.
- Start of Darkness: "Fool for Love" talks about Drusilla siring him back when he was "William Pratt".
- Played shallowly in his fling with Harmony, where the Deredere is mostly an act, partly a rebound crush, and the Tsuntsun is because she's that annoying.
- Undying Loyalty: After the Scoobies kick Buffy out of the house in favor of Faith, Spike is the only one of them to remain by her side; his support helps Buffy get back her self-confidence and win back the Scoobies' loyalty.
- Unexplained Recovery: Lampshaded by Spike himself. "Flash-fried in a pillar of fire saving the world. I got better."
"I play this game. It's pointless, and annoys me. And yet I'm compelled to play on."
Played By: Amy Acker
"I lived seven lives at once. I was power in the ecstasy of death. I was god to a god. Now... I'm trapped on a roof... just one roof, in this time and this place with an unstable human who drinks too much whiskey and called me a Smurf."
Illyria is an Old One, one of the ancient demons that walked the earth before the coming of man. Killed millions of years ago, she is reincarnated in Fred's body and intends to rule once again... only to find her army long dead and her temple turned to dust. With nowhere else to go, she remains with the group, seeking to learn how to live in this strange, new world. Still incredibly powerful even in her diminished form, Illyria is a mighty ally to have; but she see human affairs as beneath her and the crew can never be quite sure that she's on their side.
- Demonic Possession: She not only took over Fred's body, but consumed her soul, too.
- Depower: She's less powerful than she was in her original form. When Fred's body proves unable to contain her power, she gets depowered even further, and even after that she's still quite powerful.
- Do Not Taunt Cthulhu: "Take your best shot, little girl."
- Doomy Dooms of Doom: Armies of Doom. She used to have them.
- Double Consciousness: Fred's personality and memories (which, in a very real sense, is what humans are) are part of Illyria's "shell" as Illyria comments several times.
- Drives Like Crazy: Referenced in the comic continuation; During her road trip with Gunn, Illyria asks for another turn at the wheel. Gunn flatly refuses, saying that the last time Illyria attempted to drive, she sent twelve cars flying off the freeway. Illyria states that if she can rule the Earth, she can learn to master driving.
- Eldritch Abomination: One of the few (non-parodic) sympathetic unspeakable horrors from the beyond in fiction, along with Rei Ayanami.
- The Empath: Can sense (and is disgusted by) Wesley's grief. In later episodes she also senses his desire for her when she takes Fred's form, and calls him on it when he rejects the idea of sleeping with Fred!Illyria.
- Flight, Strength, Heart: She has Super Strength, can manipulate time, and can talk to plants.
- Ghost Memory: She has Fred's memories, but not her soul.
- Glacier Waif: Fast enough to use Waif-Fu, but doesn't really need to.
- Glory Days: Illyria often talked about the world of her time and how everyone was afraid of her and her kind.
- God Emperor: Her role before the creation of the world. Coming down to blue-haired Waif-Fu wielder was an adjustment, to say the least.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: Her inhuman stoicism makes it hard to see the explosive, homicidal rage in time to steer clear.
- Heel-Face Turn: Though deeply, deeply unhappy about it.
- Hero with an F in Good: In the comics, her road to heroism hits a few roadblocks. To prevent a demon from leeching off of Jeremy's energy, she dutifully punches a hole clean through Jeremy's chest. Ouch. In the climax of After the Fall, she reverts to her primordial demon form due to the machinations of Gunn and starts wrecking Los Angeles. The Senior Partners fix her so she returns to 'normal'.
- How the Mighty Have Fallen: How she sees herself when she first comes back, when to the others she's still terrifyingly powerful. Then she gets depowered again, to the degree that she can be defeated by Hamilton, a minion of entities she once considered barely worth noticing.
- Lack of Empathy: Wesley gets roped into becoming her instructor in this regard. In an ironic twist, Illyria discovers her sense of empathy all too well — with Wesley's death.
- Spy Catsuit: With an impressive range of movement. Maybe it's the bootlegs.
- Super Power Lottery: Before she got depowered, she was probably the single strongest character in the entire Buffyverse. And even afterwards, she was still way more powerful than any of the heroes and most of the villains.
- Take Over the World: Wes predicts that Illyria will never quit her pursuit of this.
- Thou Shalt Not Kill: In exchange for helping her navigate present-day Earth, Wesley makes her swear an oath not to kill people. The rest of Team Angel has a hard time digesting this, mostly assuming that she is somehow plotting instead of keeping her promise.
- Time Master: Shares Sahjan's ability to traverse other dimensions. In "Time Bomb", she starts tripping through our timestream, though it turns out to be a side-effect of her exploding in the near future. After the Fall shows her warping time erratically every so often.
- Token Evil Teammate: Oh, the irony.
- Villainesses Want Heroes: Exploits her ability to morph into Fred to make failed advances at Wesley, who ironically replaced Knox as her right-hand man. It is kept vague whether she is purely interested in probing Wesley's brain, or if theremnants of Fred's psyche are manipulating her feelings toward Wes — or both?
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Able to alter her physical appearance at will (she is capable of mimicking Fred's persona closely enough to fool Fred's parents, right down to the clothing she wears).
- Waif-Fu: Somewhat subverted. Illyria certainly doesn't look like she should hit hard, but her fighting style is mostly Mighty Glacier as opposed to Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.
- Who Wants to Live Forever?: Illyria pushes the outer bounds of why immortality might not be all that great. Nearly every Required Secondary Power imaginable including reincarnation — and her main reward was outliving even her presumably immortal army and pocket dimension temple.
- You Can't Go Home Again: She debates the idea of traveling to her home dimension, or any world besides this one. In her human form, however, her old buddies would eat her alive.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Causing a drunken Wesley to call her a smurf.
"Hail to you potential client!"
A battle-hardened champion of Pylea and other-world equivalent of Angel. Though technically of Lorne's species, his mixed bloodline has manifested in "Cow" (read: humanoid) traits, making him an outcast among his kind. Once Cordelia ascends the throne, the Groosalugg (or "Groo" for short) is assigned as her mate. However, Cordelia does not want to consummate their relationship because she fears losing her visions, which Groo would immediately inherit. At Cordy's urging, rulership of Pylea passes to Groo, who installs a set of sweeping reforms. He is soon dethroned, however, and ends up in Los Angeles — unknowingly edging out Angel as the city's hero.
- The Ace: Aside from being a bit dim, he really is Just That Good. That's how he got the title of Groosalugg ("brave and undefeated.")
- Actually That's My Assistant: After Cordelia is told that her mate has arrived, a hunchback horrible creature enters the throne room, a few moments later the handsome actual Groosalugg enteres the room telling the creature he can put his luggage anywhere
- Always Someone Better: Can do everything Angel can, and in the daylight.
- All Genes Are Codominant: He's basically a pink-skinned variant of Lorne's species, with navy blue eyes.
- All of the Other Reindeer: His "cow blood" ensured a lifetime of loathing.
- Awesome Mc Cool Name: Groosalugg means "brave and undefeated." That's right, his name advertises the fact that he never loses.
- No Name Given/Only Known by Their Nickname: Groosalugg is a title that means "brave and undefeated" his actual name is never revealed
- Reluctant Ruler: About the only thing Groo fails at is running a country; he became bored with the committees, and was deposed pretty quick.
- Shout-Out: A mighty, good-hearted and rather dumb warrior nicknamed Groo?
- Spell My Name with a "The": He's known as "The Groosalugg", although he's eventually given the nickname of "Groo".
- Spock Speak: "Hail, potential client!"
- Subverted in one (unfortunately cut) scene, where he's trying to record a message for the team's answering machine.
Groosalugg: Hello. We welcome your telephonic — (hangs up, picks up) Hello. Many thanks for telephoning — (hangs up, looks around, picks up) Hi. This is Groo. I can't make it to the phone right now, but if you'll leave a message, I'll get back to you as soon as I can. (shakes his head, hangs up again) Their speaking path is so odd.
- What Beautiful Eyes/Occult Blue Eyes: His only obvious non-human trait, a pair of unnaturally dark blue eyes that seem to lack pupils.
Allen Francis Doyle
"The good fight, yeah? You never know until you've been tested."
"One of us has been drinking, and I'm sorry to say it's not me."
A human-demon hybrid, Doyle is chosen as the messenger of the Powers That Be
, and sent to help Angel in LA. Doyle receives "visions" from the Powers, described as splitting great migraines with pictures that warn of people in trouble. Doyle has a shady past and is seemingly a coward, but the visions and his numerous underworld sources make him a valuable asset, and he becomes good friends with Angel. Together with Cordelia, the three of them form the nucleus of Angel Investigations.
- All Genes Are Codominant: He didn't even know about his father's demonic lineage until he turned twenty — presumably because of the spikes ejecting from his face. He prefers to pass as human, something pure-blood Bracken demons can't do.
- Badass: While he may not often get a chance to show it, his demon side is extremely powerful.
- Stages of Monster Grief: Doyle coped poorly with the revelation of his demon side, and his marriage to Harriet soon crumbled. However, the point is made that his demonic heritage probably wasn't the only reason their marriage broke up. Upon learning about demons, Harriet found the thought of studying an entirely new set of cultures and pastimes intriguing, whereas Doyle just wanted to pretend his demonic side didn't exist.
- Stupid Sexy Flanders: Remarks in one episode that he may be "a little attracted" to Angel.
- Super Mode: Bracken demon mode.
- Suspiciously Similar Substitute/Expy: In a way. He was in the cast from the beginning, but was originally intended to be the demon Whistler; the character Doyle was created with very similar traits when Max Perlich, who played Whistler on Buffy, turned out to be unavailable. In "City of" Doyle even wears a hat similar to Whistler's iconic hat.
- That Man Is Dead: "It's Doyle now. Just Doyle."
- We Hardly Knew Ye: In part due to Actor Existence Failure. Doyle was written out after 9 episodes, as Joss had always wanted to have a Sacrificial Lion, though Real Life Writes the Plot was also in play due to Glenn Quinn's drug addiction. Whedon wanted to bring him back later, but Quinn died of a drug overdose in 2002.
- What Could Have Been: Joss Whedon planned to bring Doyle back as a Big Bad. Unfortunately, nothing came of it due to Quinn's death.
- Willfully Weak: He hardly ever used his demon form because of his discomfort with it.