Cordelia cries over the loss of Lorne, only to find out that he is alive: Pyleans can survive decapitation if the rest of the body remains intact. Silas, pleased to hear that Cordelia is upset, tells the captain of the guards to go after the humans and to kill the "bloodsucker" Angel. After talking with one of the servants about these other cows running free, Silas blows up his head with a handheld device. He has a similar but larger machine that can take care of all the cows. Wesley and Gunn wait to have their heads chopped off by the rebels. Before it can happen, however, guards attack the camp. After the battle, Gunn and Wesley convince the rebels that they are not enemies. Freed, they discuss their plans to find Angel and get home. Wesley offers suggestions for attacking the castle and unintentionally becomes their leader, replacing the original leader who died in the attack.
Angel wakes to a pseudo-oatmeal breakfast made by Fred at her cave. Angel and Fred discuss the words she's written on the walls of the caves, and Angel, who recognizes the words, suspects she's unknowingly been opening the portals in Pylea, which is how the Drokken got to Earth in the first place. Suddenly, they are attacked by castle guards, and Angel is able to fight off his demon change until Fred knocks the guard captain out with a rock and then drops his men in the Drokken gully. Fred takes care of Angel's wounds while the captain sits in the corner, tied up. The captain tells of plans to kill Cordelia after she mates with the Groosalugg, also mentioning that Lorne is already dead. He eventually frees himself, attacking the two, but Angel kills him. Angel goes to find his friends, and Fred goes with him to lead the way.
At the castle, Cordelia summons a servant to show her to the mutilation chamber, where Lorne's body is, but the servant cannot, as Cordelia's presence will bring shame to Pylea. Instead, Cordelia requests the girl's clothes. Disguised as a servant, Cordelia makes her way into the mutilation chamber and finds body parts strewn about wearing Lorne's clothes. Groosalugg shows up and says he hid Lorne's body and put the clothes on another body to fool the guards; Lorne's body is waiting with his family to be reattached. Groosalugg reveals to Cordelia that their mating will transfer her visions to him from her, but Cordelia doesn't want to give them up.
Angel and Fred arrive at the rebel camp, offering their assistance to the efforts. Wesley encourages Angel to take the lead in the fight, but he declines. He is ashamed of how he treated Gunn while a demon, and he doesn't think he can do it again. As Angel is about to break the news about Lorne, Landok arrives with his head in a large basket, explaining that he was bringing it home to the body. Angel, Wesley, and Gunn give a brief and lackluster commiseration of Lorne's apparent death, causing him to express his disappointment at their "attempt" to mourn; this outburst frightens the trio. Later, as the group is about to head out, Wesley tells Angel he must challenge and kill the Groosalugg. Angel again expresses the lack of trust he has in himself to stay human, and also explains that the reason he fired the gang months ago was because he felt the darkness rising in him and he didn't want them to witness it. The demon he changes into is the darkness personified and he's afraid that he will eventually be unable to return to his human form. Wesley has confidence that he can; he's strong enough to do whatever is necessary. Aside, Gunn wonders whether Angel is capable, and Wesley admits that he's not sure he is. In the mutilation chamber, Cordelia has a vision of the green monster (which she does not know is really Angel) killing the Groosalugg, much to her distress, as she has come to love "Groo". Everyone disperses from the camp to prepare for the attack. Angel plants a torch in the ground and calls out to the Groosalugg for battle. Silas, who had been demanding that Cordelia get on with the "com-shuk", drags the Groosalugg outside to face Angel, lying to him about what horrors Angel will visit upon Cordelia if he wins, in order to make him angry. Led by Wesley and Gunn, the rebels attack the palace. Silas goes to activate the device that will blow up the heads of all of the "cows" wearing collars, but Cordelia decapitates him just before he triggers the device. Against his wishes, Angel transforms into the beast as he is losing the battle against the Groosalugg. However, after he gains the advantage, he transforms back to human, and Cordelia stops the fight completely by confessing her love to Groo.
The next day, Lorne, his head reattached, says goodbye to his family. His mother, even more ashamed of him than before, yells at "the runt of her loins" as Angel rushes him out. Outside, Lorne admits he's glad he came back. His return has allowed him to confirm that he doesn't belong in Pylea but in LA, where no one really belongs. As he and Angel return to the village, Lorne breaks into song, causing nearby Pyleans agony at the noise. Cordelia's last act as princess is to make a new law abolishing slavery, after which she appoints Groosalugg the ruler of Pylea. With the help of the priests' books everyone, including Fred, returns to LA, where they drive Angel's car right into Caritas.
The team that returns to the hotel is a far happier one than before they left. As Cordelia explains to Fred that tacos and soap still exist, and Gunn enthuses about the fun portal ride, Angel asks to be the one to say a classic line and opens the doors with the words, "There's no place like... Willow?"
In the lobby, Willow Rosenberg is waiting and everyone's good mood immediately dissipates as the look on her face makes it clear that something terrible has happened. Angel already knows: "It's Buffy."
- After Action Patch Up: Fred on Angel.
- Anguished Declaration of Love: Subverted; Cordelia rushes to stop the Angel vs. Groo fight, blurting out "I love him!" Angel is, needless-to-say, surprised. An irritated Cordy explains she's actually referring to Groo, whereupon Angel is left muttering to himself about what kind of love she's referring to.
- Anyone Can Die: Double subverted despite obvious candidates for death like Lorne and Groo, plus the arrival of Fred as a possible replacement. Then when all our heroes return alive, they're faced with the news of Buffy's death.
- Bearer of Bad News: The second season ends with the heroes returning from an adventure in another dimension, all feeling pretty good about themselves... only to find Willow waiting for them, looking miserable. One look at her face is all Angel needs.Cordelia: What's...?
Angel: It's Buffy.
- Big Damn Kiss: Between Cordelia and Groo.
- Big "SHUT UP!"Silas: Silence!
- Bizarre Demon BiologyCaptain: I will personally bury my spear in [Angel's] rump.
Silas: Captain! His heart is where a cow's is: (touches his breast) here.
- Blatant Lies: Landok casually strolls into the camp dragging two rebels by their necks.Rebel: Ah, we captured this warrior of the Deathwok Clan.
- Bond One-LinerCordy: Your cow-princess is tired of hearing you yak, padre.
- Brick Joke: "Numfar, do the Dance of Shame!" (sound of feet hitting the floor boards). Also Lorne bursting into song as he leaves, causing a pair of demons doing road work (now all their slaves have been freed) to clasp their ears in pain.
- But Now I Must Go: Groo wants Cordelia to stay and rule alongside him. Much as being a princess appeals to her, she has to return to Los Angeles and help fight evil there.
- Character Development: Cordelia previously saw her prophetic visions as just a burden. Now, she sees them as a valuable tool in her team's fight against evil and is unwilling to give them up when the opportunity is presented.
- Covert Pervert: Lorne's head closes his eyes and pretends to be dead. Cordelia orders a pretty female slave to take off her clothes. The eyes quickly open again.
- Commercial Break Cliffhanger: An ad break is preceded by Angel falling down and Groo swinging his axe down on him. Fortunately, Angel manages to avoid death after the commercials.
- Decapitation Presentation: Used as an excuse by Cordy to hold onto Lorne's head so she can rejoin it with his body.Markallo: "Kaldar, remove the traitor's filthy head from our lady's august presence.
Cordy: No, no, no, no! I...like the filthy head. That is, ah, I want to defile it more! (turns and spits on Lorne, who is playing dead) I just keep it...to spit upon, and-and-and when I grow tired of that, I-I-I will make it into ah, a planter. A traitor planter...for all to see. Or maybe a candy dish.
- Does This Remind You of Anything?: Cordelia says that now the slaves have been freed, now comes the hard part — the reconstruction. She leaves it to Gunn to explain to Groo what the word means.Gunn: ...saying people are free, don't make'm free. You got races that hate each other, you got some folks getting work they don't want, others losing the little they had. You're looking at social confusion, economic depression, and probably some riots. (gives a rueful smile) Good luck.
- Dressing as the Enemy: Cordelia disguises herself as a servant to go find the Mutilation Room. Strangely averted with the palace goons despite them running around in face-concealing helmets contrary to the Evil Overlord List.
- Explosive Leash: The Shock Collar has a second function. Moreover, Silas has a device that can detonate every collar in the kingdom as a last resort.
- Failed Dramatic Exit: After being patched up by Fred, Angel has to leave to help his friends. Fred sadly watches him depart, then sits in her Corner of Woe until Angel pops back in.Angel: I...don't actually know how to get there.
Fred: Oh. (gets up eagerly) I can show you.
- Formulaic Magic / Magi Babble:Fred: They're not words. They're consonant representations of a mathematical transfiguration formula.(also her): The trionic speechcraft formulation has to alter the reality sphere. Lutzbalm predicted it at Zurich in '89. Laughed him off the stage.
- Funny Background Event / Running Gag: "Numfar, do the dance of shame!"
- Getting Crap Past the RadarGroo: It was worth it for one moment of your intimate touch.
Cordy: That was an accident. I-it was kind of dark and... Oh, you mean the hug.
- Golden Moment: Averted; before leaving Pylea, Angel encourages Lorne to make up with Mom. After all, she didn't leave his body on the maggot heap like Lorne supposed she would. A scratching Lorne thanks Mom for putting him on the lice heap instead, and they both end up retreating in a hail of verbal abuse because Lorne has disgraced his family all over again by helping free the slaves, so there's no-one to do all the dirty work.
- The Glomp: On discovering Groo hid Lorne's body, Cordelia hugs him enthusiastically, causing Lorne's head (carried in a metal bucket) to clank painfully against a post.
- Heroes Prefer Swords: Wesley holds an Excalibur-type sword after taking up The Chains of Commanding.
- I Just Want to Be Special: Cordelia finds out she can get rid of her visions by sleeping with the Groosalugg.Cordy: Groo, I can't give up my visions. I like them. Okay, I don't like the searing pain and agony that is steadily getting worse...
Groo: You are pure human. You are not meant to carry such a burden!
Cordy: Maybe not. But I'm not ready to give them up either. They're a part of who I am now. They're an honor.
- Improvised Weapon: Wesley and Gunn are being held in stone stocks ready for decapitation when the soldiers attack — they use them to fight, impressing the rebels. Averted when Cordelia is carrying around Lorne's head in a bucket.Cordy: Do you mind if I hit him over the head with you?
- It's All My Fault: Cordy re Lorne.Cordy: No. Oh, no. God, please forgive me. This is all my fault. Because I pardoned you...and they...they wanted to teach me a lesson. You didn't do anything wrong.
- Kneel Before Zod: Cordy is bothered by her servants kneeling for her. As she's making her grand exit though...Wesley: Should people be bowing in a free society?
Cordy: [smiling] These things take time.
- Losing Your Head: Members of the Deathwok Clan can survive decapitation as long as their body isn't mutilated.
- Macho Masochism: Groo takes off his glove and holds his hand in the Challenge Torch. Cue Oh, Crap! look from Angel.Angel: This guy...he doesn't feel pain?
Fred: Oh, he-he feels it, but...he's the Groosalug. He overcomes all things. Good luck.
- Magic from TechnologyAngel: (Studying Fred's Cave Full of Crazy) Krv... drplgr.. I know these words. These are the words we used to open up the portals.
Fred: They're not words. They're consonant representations of a mathematical transfiguration formula.
Angel: (Beat) Well, obviously.
Fred: I used to think that if you said them out loud and in the right order the quaking and quivering would...
Angel: Oh, you mean open a portal. Well, that's how we got here and that's how we'll get back.
- The Needs of the ManyGunn: Those men you sent to create a diversion are going to get killed.
Wesley: Yes, they are. (Gunn looks at Wesley disgusted) You try not to get anybody killed, you wind up getting everybody killed.
- Neutral Female: Averted twice, first when Fred clonks the soldier spearing Angel with a big rock, and second when Cordelia decapitates Silas (preventing him from killing all of the human slaves in Pylea).
- Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: Wes and Gunn are about to be executed by the rebels when an arrow appears in the axeman's chest and soldiers shouting "Kill the Outworlders!" attack. This both saves their lives and reassures the rebels which side they're on.
- Nightmare Fetishist: Cordelia's grovelling slave offers to cut out her tongue for offending the great princess. When Cordelia wants to know "What is it with you people and mutilation?" the slave admits quietly that they don't have much entertainment here.
- No Sympathy:Cordy: I'm sorry about the spittle. I just had to think fast... This is just pretty unsettling for me.
Lorne: Oh, I'm sure it must be. And after all, I only lost my head!
- Not Helping Your Case: Angel tells his friends that Fred can get them all home. Fred breaks out in Gibbering Genius mode. Wesley and Gunn don't look convinced.
- Off with His Head!: Silas goes to activate the device that will blow up the heads of all of the "cows" wearing collars, but Cordelia decapitates him just before he triggers the device.
- Professional Butt-Kisser: Cordelia's servants, which she's not entirely bothered by.
- Put Their Heads Together: Angel does this to a couple of helmeted soldiers in Fred's cave, making a nice clonking sound.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Averted; Angel's eyes go red while fighting in Fred's cave, but nothing else happens because he's too afraid of harming Fred while in Game Face.
- Reports of My Death Were Greatly Exaggerated: On being told the Host has been executed, the gang look sadly into the bucket containing his head.Angel: He was...
Lorne: (opening eyes) That's it?
(Angel, Gunn and Wes all recoil with a scream, leaving Fred the only one still framed by the rim of the basket, peering down completely unmoved.)
Lorne: Where is the praising and extolling of my virtues? Where's the love?
- Required Spinoff Crossover: Willow makes a cameo to break the news of Buffy's death to Angel.
- Rousing Speech: Cordelia gives one to Groo.
- See You in Hell: It happens when Gunn and Wesley are about to have their heads cut off, thanks to Wesley's big mouth in the previous episode.Gunn: I've got a plan.
Wesley: Oh thank God! What is it?
Gunn: We die horribly and painfully, you go to Hell and I spend eternity in the arms of baby Jesus.
- Screaming Woman: Cordelia gives out an Overly Long Scream when she realizes Lorne's decapitated head is talking to her. Lorne patiently tells Cordy to get it out of her system, but when the scream goes on and on without stopping tells her to shut up because he no longer has the hands to cover his ears.
- Shout-Out: There are several references to The Wizard of Oz:
- As Angel and Lorne walk away from Lorne's family, he sings "Somewhere Over the Rainbow."
- The title is a paraphrase of Dorothy's refrain "There's no place like home."
- When they return to the Hyperion, Angel starts to say "There's no place like home," but is cut off as he notices Willow in the lobby.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: Lampshaded. Fred is revealed to be capable of doing it, too. (When we first met Fred she had spent some years in a world where, for humans, stealth is a survival skill.)Gunn: He's Angel. He does that. How'd she do that?Angel: She's Fred. She does that, too.
- Storming the Castle: Literally.
- Stranger in a Familiar Land: AvertedLorne: My psychic friend told me I had to come back here. I didn't believe her. Then I realized I did have to come back here, because... I really always thought I had to come back here, deep down inside, you know? 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.
- Sublime Rhyme: Groo, it's you!
- Sudden Downer Ending: Our heroes return in triumph to the Hyperion, only to find Willow waiting there in somber clothing. When she doesn't respond to their surprised greeting, Angel instantly realizes what's happened.
- There Is No Kill Like Overkill: The captain of the guard is sent to kill Angel.Priest: He is a Van-tal, a drinker of blood. He can only be killed by fire, decapitation or a wooden spear through the heart.
Silas: Perhaps all three, just to be thorough.
- There's No Place Like Home: Averted; Angel wants to say this when he and the rest of the Fang Gang (with Fred and Lorne) return to the Hyperion, but then they see Willow in the lobby.
- Throwing Down the Gauntlet: Unaware of how Cordy and Groo have been bonding, Angel is sent to challenge Groo in a fight to the death, both to provide a distraction and draw him away from Cordelia so she can be rescued. Angel isn't happy about this because the only way he'll be strong enough to defeat this undefeated champion is to revert to his demon side.
- Trash the Set: The team drive Angel's convertible through the portal and right into the middle of Caritas, crashing through tables and ramming the bar.Lorne: You know I've been thinking about remodeling the bar.
- Unspoken Plan Guarantee: Averted; Wesley explains the plan beforehand, but everything goes according to plan.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: When Lorne's head talks, Angel, Wes, and Gunn all faint in shock... while a nonplussed Fred just looks on. Justified since she's the only one who knew about the Deathwok Clan being able to survive past decapitation.
- Walk-In Chime-In
- Warrior Princess: Cordy invokes this trope to solidify her authority. She cuts off the head of the villainous Silas. After that, no priest dares ignore the decrees of the axe-wielding Cordy.Cordy: I have a vision. Actually I have two visions, and in one of them you keep your head.
- We Need a Distraction = We Have Reserves (see The Needs of the Many)
- You Are Better Than You Think You Are: A rather dark version comes from Wesley when he assures Angel that he's a man with a demon inside him, not the other way around, and can come back from the transformation he'll need to make to win the fight Wesley is sending him into. Once Angel is gone Gunn asks him if he's really sure about that, and Wesley replies that he "needs him to think it." It turns out to be true though.
- You Are in Command Now: After their leader gets killed, the rebels declare Wesley their new Rebel Leader as he has a plan and knows fancy terms like "guerrilla warfare". Wesley rises above his previous uncertainty and becomes brutally pragmatic about sacrificing both anonymous rebels and his friend Angel.Wesley: Why do people keep putting me in charge of things?
Gunn: I have no idea.