London, 1860 — England, 19th century. Darla tells Angelus that she's prepared a surprise for him - a trio of sisters wandering down the avenue. The middle daughter has powers of vision. The young girl turns, and it's Drusilla. Angelus is ready to pounce on her right now, but Darla tells him to "let the plum ripen." Angelus realizes he has to come up with something elaborate for this one.
Angel returns to the office and tells Cordelia and Wesley about seeing Darla but they don't believe him. Darla was staked three and a half years ago. They have more important matters to discuss anyway. A new client who believes that his philandering wife's reports of being "abducted by aliens" may, in fact, be less than credible. The Bat Pack track the wife to a hotel where, sure enough, she's making an illicit love connection. Angel spots Darla in the lobby. He races over and grabs her but she claims to be someone named DeEtta Kramer. Security comes to aid and she races outside to her husband...in the sunlight. Yep, she's human.
Undeterred, Angel heads over to a San Fernando suburb to pay the Kramers a visit. Creeping through their yard, Angel glaces into a window that looks into a beautiful scene of Stephen and Darla sharing dinner. Stephen's a paid actor, and annoying the hell out of Darla, who is communicating with Lindsey via earpiece.
London, 1860 Angelus is at the Sisters of Mercy convent, having just killed the entire convent. Darla notices a very much alive Drusilla in the corner, who is now in full-fledged wacky mode. Darla wonders why they don't kill her already. The light bulb has finally gone off over Angelus' head. He'll make her a vampire, instead.
Darla calls 911 and pretends that an intruder is in the house. The vamp guard backhands Darla and murders Stephen. Angel overhears the screams and crashes through the door to find Darla sobbing over her dead "husband." Angel runs from the police, taking a few bullets in the process, and runs off. Kate arrives on the scene and Darla plays the grieving housewife. The moment that Kate turns her back, Angel's hand descends from the nearby tree, grabbing Darla and pulling her up. Yoink!
Angel drags Darla back to the water tank. After a little foreplay, her game of being DeEtta is tossed aside. Darla wants the old Angel back, but he tells her things are a little different now because she is now has a soul. Darla presents Angel with a cross and slams it against his chest, causing it to smoke. She taunts Angel about how it's proof that no matter what he does, God doesn't want him — But she still does. Succumbing to his cooking flesh, Angel releases Darla and can only watch as she walks out into the sunlight. Later, back at the hotel, Cordy and Wes pay Angel a visit in his room. They're worried. He reassures him that he didn't go bad. Wesley warns him to be careful. With Darla conspiring with Wolfram & Hart, there's bound to be trouble.
"I say bring it on."
- Always Camp: Wolfram & Hart's paid actor. Not only does he prattle on endlessly, but he refuses to touch his linguine. "Gotta watch the figure."
- Analogy Backfire: Following Angel's airy dismissal of their client, Wesley hustles Mr. Jeakins to the door, explaining that Angel is a bit eccentric.
- Armor-Piercing Question: While Kate is confronting the rest of Angel Investigations over Angel's supposed murder of Mr. Kramer, Gunn pulls this, asking how Angel got into the house and if Mr. Kramer invited him in. Kate responds that no, he wasn't, and immediately realizes what he's getting at: Angel's a vampire, so he couldn't possibly have just stormed in and killed someone in their own home unless he was explicitly invited in or the residents were already dead.
- Break Them by Talking: Darla's shot that Angel was attracted to Buffy simply because she was something "new" clearly hits the mark.
- Brutal Honesty: As Wes is giving the five-star treatment to their newest client, Angel pops up out of the tunnels and storms through the lobby. Cordy introduces Mr. Jeakins, who asks, "Do you think my wife's cheating on me?" Without pausing, Angel fires back, "Probably." Well, not tactful, but still accurate.
- Call-Forward: Darla says that all relationships end in betrayal — in "Darla" we find out that she abandoned her sire (The Master) for the new and attractive Angelus, just as she accuses Angel of doing when he rejected her for "that cheerleader".
- Cut His Heart Out with a SpoonDarla: All that power wasted on a whiny, mopey do-gooder. God, I could eat this eyeballs.Lindsey: Our plans for Angel are a little more long term than that, but if you can't help yourself, then by all means be my guest.Darla: [smirks] You're fun for a human.
- Description Cut: Gunn asks how bad Angelus could get — cut to Angelus and Darla massacring the convent where Drusilla was hiding.
- Dirty Business: Angel gets annoyed with the divorce case they're investigating and blows the surveillance by telling the woman they're watching that her husband is on to her.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: Older woman jealous of being "dumped" for a younger woman. The "religious war".
- Double Entendre: The philandering wife and her beau. "I'm going to abduct you right now and conduct my own probe."Darla [in flashback]: He was propositioning a streetwalker and dickering over the price. Can you imagine? I told him I'd do him for nothing.
- Even Evil Has Standards: When Angelus tells Darla his plan to turn Drusilla, even she seems appalled. It's a testament to just how twisted Angelus really was when his evil deeds made other evil things cringe.
- Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: Fooled by "DeEtta Kramer's" story, Kate storms the Hyperion with a SWAT team to arrest him, firmly convinced that Angel is evil and always will be evil. However, Gunn asks if DeEtta or Mr. Kramer actually invited Angel into the house; Kate responds that no, of course Angel wasn't invited in... and as soon as those words are out of her mouth, she realizes that Angel is innocent, since Angel couldn't have entered unless he was invited inside or the real owners were already dead.Cordelia: Okay, okay, lets not get off track here. We want to find Angel as much as you do.
Kate: No you don't. You want to protect him even though he's lost it: he stalked that woman because he thought she was this Darla from his past. She begged him to stay out and he knocked down the door and killed her husband. I've read about him, too, I know he is and I know he hasn't changed.
Gunn: No he hasn't, he's still a vampire.
Cordy: Gunn - not helping.
Gunn: So, how'd he get in the house? She invite him in?
Kate: Of course she didn't in... (Stunned Silence)
Cordelia: The only way Angel could get in that house uninvited is if the real owners were dead. It's what he was saying all along; she isn't DeEtta Kramer!
- Face-Revealing Turn: Darla asks Angelus to guess who she's picked for his next victim. He narrows it down to three virgin daughters he sees walking away from him on the street. Darla says it's actually the middle one, who is a seer — sure enough a still-human Drusilla turns to stare at them in horror.
- Fanservice with a Smile: Cordelia disguises herself as a waitress in a "nifty little outfit, which seemed to tell so many conventioneers 'pet me, I'm a whore'."
- Felony Misdemeanor: Cordy begins to castigate Angel for turning away paying customers, then leaps out of her chair when he starts lasciviously smelling her hair. He's clearly in another zone. Wesley storms in rolling up his sleeves, and barks, "I have to speak with you, man-to-man! Cordelia, you may not want to be here for this." He turns to Angel and whines, "Was it something I did?"
- For the Evulz: Even Darla seems stunned by Angelus' passion for cruelty. In the present day, she admits to Angel that she could barely keep up with him.
- Frameup: Angel is framed for the murder of Mr. Kramer.
- Gaslighting: Wolfram & Hart using the recently resurrected Darla to tease Angel, making his friends think he's lost it.Wesley: Vampires don't come back from the dead.
Angel: I did. And I saw her. I'm not crazy!
Angel: Right between the clown and the big, talking hot dog.
- Groin Attack: We quickly establish that Stephen is a hired actor, from the Method school. He name-drops the Actor's Studio, then frets over whether he should be holding Darla's chair, given that they're supposed to be 'married'. As Stephen natters on, Darla finally takes matters into her own hands by reaching below the table and grabbing a vulnerable part of his anatomy. (Even the vampire bodyguard winces.)
- Hero Insurance: Averted by Kate Lockley's parting shot at the heroes.
- Holy Burns Evil: Darla pulls her own twisted version of the famous cross-burning scene in BTVS "Angel".
- Hollywood Tone-Deaf: Angel says "I'm very sorry" after his bad karaoke.
- Hyde Plays Jekyll: Angel lets out his inner Angelus to encourage Darla to stop pretending to be DeEtta Kramer. Sure enough, Darla enjoys it too much to keep up the charade.
- Hypocritical Humor: At headquarters, Wes and Cordy explain Angel's special situation concerning his "suddenly turning evil" to Gunn. Wes assures him it's all precautionary. Gunn eyes a tranquilizer gun, manacles, and a pile of chains, then deadpans, "I see."
- Indulgent Fantasy Segue: While among his colleagues Angel imagines Darla on top of him, making out.
- I Shall Taunt You: Lampshaded by Darla herself, who sarcastically inquires about whether Lindsey's plan is to "tease him to death."
- Indian Burial Ground: Saint Bridget's in Fremont, a convent built over a sacred Native burial ground. The place saw eight murders in the span of two years, before the whole place burned to the ground.Angel: ...Which is nothing compared to what happened in Our Lady of Lochenbee...
- Inspector Javert: Kate is fully prepared to believe the worst in Angel; when Darla tells her that Angel was behind the murder of Mr. Kramer, Kate unhesitatingly storms the Hyperion with a SWAT team to have him arrested. However, she is forced to accept the truth when Gunn points out that Angel, being a vampire, couldn't possibly have just stormed in and killed someone in their own home unless he was explicitly invited or the residents were already dead. She still resists until Wes shows her a portrait of Darla from the past, confirming to Kate that Darla and DeEtta Kramer are one and the same.
- It Doesn't Mean AnythingDarla: "But you can escape. You can escape it all. Remember what it was like to get lost, huh? Every thought a million miles away, every part of you being alive! All you have to do is let me give you one little moment of happiness."
Angel: "You took me places, showed me things, huh? You blew the top off my head. But you never made me happy."
Darla: "But that - that cheerleader did? We were together 150 years! We shared everything. You're saying - never?"
- Laughing Mad: Angelus & Darla top off their Mind Rape of Drusilla with a celebratory rodding. Drusilla alternates between cackling and sobs. Bear in mind that Drusilla is psychic and can likely see what's about to happen to her and what she's going to become.
- Leaning on the Fourth Wall: "The woman should have her own series."
- Lost in a Crowd: While trying to follow her, Angel gets caught up in the crowd surrounding a clown and a guy wearing a hot dog costume who's handing out fliers. After getting through the bottleneck, he looks around, but Darla has vanished.
- Madness Mantra: "Snake in the woodshed. Snake in the woodshed. Snake in the woodshed! SNAKE IN THE WOODSHED!"
- Master of Delusion: Mr. Jenkins genuinely wants to believe in his wife's UFO abductions. "It's more common than people realize."
- Meaningful Echo: "You're hurting me...I like it." Another Call-Back to BTVS "Angel".
- Must Be Invited: Used as an alibi! Wes and Cordy protest that Angel could not have killed Mr. Kramer, as according to his wife's story he hadn't been invited into the house.
- Never Recycle a Building: The convent burned to the ground, but the state purchased the area and dug a water reservoir.
- The Nose Knows: When Wesley is skeptical that Angel could recognize Darla from scent, Angel sniffs him and says he had sex with a bleached blonde last night.Cordelia: Unbelievable. I didn't think you ever had sex.
- No Ontological Inertia: The last episode ended with every glass window in the hotel getting broken; they're fine in the opening sequence. Even if Angel Investigations has the spare resources to replace a hundred windows in a mostly empty building, that's an awfully fast repair job.
- Add in that Cordelia explicitly mentions how tight their finances are.
- Not Helping Your Case: When his teammates shows skepticism at Darla's return, Angel yells, "I saw her. I'm not crazy!" Wesley asks where Angel spotted Darla, and he replies, "Right between the clowns and the big talkin' hot dog!"
- Not Himself: Both Angel and Kate are looking somewhat strung out from stress and lack of sleep.
- Of Corsets Sexy: Oh, Darla.
- The Reveal: "DeEtta Kramer" hurtling into the arms of her "husband" — who is standing in a pillar of sunlight.
- Reassigned to Antarctica: In her first scene of Season Two, we see Kate shuffling paper in a dimly-lit corner. She's no longer working downtown.
- Silly Reason for War: Men in black robes fighting it out with men in red robes. The victorious side gets to worship a wall-mounted piranha.Gunn: My uncle Theo always said: never buy a dull plow, and never get in the middle of a religious war."
- Smithical Marriage: The Kramers.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: Darla vanishes the first time Angel catches sight of her — his own favourite weapon used against him!
- They Wasted a Perfectly Good Sandwich: Once her charade is over, Darla carries her (much-lauded) plate of prop linguine into the kitchen and smashes it in the sink. My God, she's not just evil, she's a careless housekeeper!
- Too Kinky to TortureDarla: "You're hurting me...I like it."
- Two Roads Before You: Lorne warns Angel that he's about to jump the track.
- Undying Loyalty: Kate gives Wes and Cordy the option of betraying Angel or going down with him. Their mutual response is to fold their arms and say nothing.
- Ungrateful Bastard: Cordy notes that they've been more than "cooperative" with Kate and her goons; "We solved the damn case!" Kate leaves in a huff nonetheless.
- Vertical Kidnapping: After getting Darla's statement, Kate turns away to talk to a uniformed officer. Hands promptly yank Darla up into the tree they're standing under.
- Virgin Vision: Angelus can somehow tell the three daughters are virgins using his evil vampire powers.
- With Friends Like These...: Kate accuses police colleague Jack of avoiding her after she'd been "sent to Siberia". Jack protests that he stuck his neck out for her, and to prove his loyalty hands Kate an envelope with information on Angel's new address from "a friend of a friend" — the fact that Lindsey was previously seen holding that same envelope throws a lot of doubt on his intentions.
- You Remind Me of X: Averted; Angel sees Darla and naturally assumes it's another Indulgent Fantasy Segue, but she doesn't go away.