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Recap / Angel S 05 E 09 Harms Way

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We follow a couple of days in the life of Harmony. They suck.

  • Accidental Hero: Harmony averts a demon war when she stakes her rival in front of the two clans, providing the necessary blood sacrifice of a Wolfram & Hart employee. Unfortunately Angel is too angry at Harmony knocking out his friends and shoving them in a closet to appreciate this, but the boss does allow Harm to keep her job, because he realises that she's at least trying to be good despite her lack of a soul.
  • A-Cup Angst: Fred's face falls when Harmony says that she'd like to be just like Fred, "except with more up front".
  • Damn With Faint Praise: Harmony wangsts that everyone hates her. Fred hastens to say that she doesn't, but then admits it's actually because she doesn't know Harmony — who quickly seizes on this as an opportunity to get to know Fred better.
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  • A Day in the Limelight: Harmony gets her most important role yet.
  • Apologetic Attacker / Bound and Gagged
  • Animal Reaction Shot: The camel appears to snort indignantly when Harmony says they can't return it.
  • Backhanded Compliment: Harmony trying to bond with Fred. "We're like gal pals! This is awesome! You can teach me about life, and I can teach you how to dress better."
  • Bad "Bad Acting": Angel is less than threatening in the opening video when he tells his employees not to kill or (they will) be killed.
  • Bad Boss: Angel decapitates an accountant just because he dismembered a few virgins for fun. On his own time! No wonder a vampire gal doesn't want to risk coming clean to the boss.
  • Bad Cop/Incompetent Cop: Team Angel ask why LAPD have kindly informed the CEO of Wolfram & Hart about a vampire killing.
    Angel: Turns out we own them.
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  • Breather Episode
  • Comically Missing the Point: In an episode about Harmony? Totally!
  • Chekhov's Gunman: The Sahrvin clan will turn out to be involved with the Circle of the Black Thorn via their leader.
  • Continuity Nod: Harmony's liking for unicorns. Angel and Spike still looking bruised from their fight in "Destiny".
  • Disposing of a Body: Harmony tries to get rid of the corpse by throwing it down the laundry chute. The body hits the lid of the laundry bin and rolls out onto the ground, so Harmony has to go down and do it properly. After the body is found at the city dump and Harmony's blood test comes up positive for human blood, she keeps knocking people out and hiding them in the closet.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: The Vinji and the Sahrvin clans — looking at ankles leads to eye gouging. Using the wrong fork led to centuries of warfare.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: Harmony wakes up after a one-night stand to find the guy dead, and though she doesn't quite remember what happened, she eventually realizes that she was set up for the murder. It turns out the real killer was...some random other vampire chick named Tamika working in the Wolfram and Hart secretarial pool, whom Harmony had literally bumped into earlier. It turns out that Tamika was upset that Harmony was on "the fast track" just from knowing Angel and his friends, and framed her so that she could take her job.
  • Dumb Blonde
    Spike: Keep it simple, Harm. It suits you.
  • Eating Lunch Alone: Harmony is ostracized from her human co-workers because she's a vampire, and other vampires aren't much for socialising.
  • Evil-Detecting Dog: The poodle barks at Harmony every time she walks past it.
  • Evil Is Petty
    Tamika: You want to know the first thing I'm gonna do when I get your desk? Smash all of those stupid, ugly-ass unicorns!
  • Fork Fencing: Harmony and another vampire both grab chopsticks in a fight in the cafeteria (with accompanying Kung-Foley sounds). Harmony eventually stakes the other vamp with her chopsticks.
  • Foreshadowing: The distance between Angel and Harmony no doubt adds to her willingness to betray him to Hamilton in the Grand Finale.
  • Frameup
  • Friendless Background
  • Game Face: Makes cleaning your teeth easier.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: I guess Cordelia was right about Harmony swinging that way...
    Fred: (to her recorder) The size and depth of the wound indicate a female vampire.
    Harmony: Or gay!
    Fred: doesn't really work like that.
  • Global Ignorance: Harmony wonders if she should run away to either Mexico or Cancún. For those of you who don't get it, Cancún is in Mexico.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Spike is going to take off for Europe.
    Spike: Any message for Buffy?
    Angel: Tell her you're a moron.
  • Grievous Bottley Harm
  • Hypocritical Humor: Harmony is lonely, yet can't emphasize with those who share her position. Becomes a bit less funny when you realise that unlike Cordelia, Harmony is trapped in her shallow high school persona thanks to her lack of a soul.
  • In a Single Bound
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain:
    Harmony: I tried being out on my own, all independent and evil. I'm just no good at it.
  • In with the In Crowd
    Tamika: I have been here for five years! I type 80 words a minute. I have an exceptionally pleasant phone voice. But you're the one who sits at the best desk in the building. You're the one in the in-crowd.
    Harmony: (chuckles) You think I'm in the in-crowd?
    Tamika: Oh, I see you in all the important meetings. You're on the fast track.
  • Jabba Table Manners: Harmony gulps greedily from her thermos, attracting stares from her co-workers — it's because Harmony's pigs blood has been spiked with human blood.
  • Just Between You and Me: Tamika decides to lay out her Evil Plan when it’s almost successfully completed.
  • The Killer Was Left-Handed: While attempting to prove she didn't kill someone, Harmony uses the possibly-true fact that vampires tend to always bite on one or the other sides of their victim's neck.
    • Makes sense. When kissing, people have a preferred side they tilt their head to, vampires are usually human-based, so it might carry over. However, the first person to tilt his/her head sort of forces the other party to counter-tilt, so in case of a deliberate exposing of the neck...
  • The Living Dead: The eyelids of the 'corpse' on Fred's autopsy table give a noticeable twitch. Then again, he had been bitten by a vampire...
  • Love Triangle: Fred knows that Wesley and Knox are attracted to her, and thinks they're both hot. After dating Knox for a short time, Fred will eventually choose Wesley in "Smile Time".
  • Made of Plasticine: Harmony stakes Tamika with a chopstick.
  • Mistaken for Gay: A group of Wolfram & Hart employees are discussing who they think has a crush on Fred. Harmony suggests Wesley but is dismissed by the others.
    Office Girl: Mr. Wyndam-Pryce? Everyone knows he's— Oooh! Muffins!
  • Meet the New Boss: Wolfram & Hart under Angel as opposed to Holland Manners and the like. Both have the killing of employees and even make the same termination jokes. It's hardly surprising the lower ranks regard the whole 'not being evil' thing as just another policy of the boss they've got to play along with to get promoted.
  • Mood Dissonance: The employee promo video in The Teaser.
  • Morning Routine: With a unique vampire twist.
  • The Murder After: Harmony finds herself in a bit of a predicament.
  • Murphy's Law: Angel asks if the weapons scanner is foolproof.
    Fred: I'd say yes, but then some fool would just come along and sneak something past us.
  • My Hovercraft Is Full of Eels: Angel tries to communicate with a demon species that speaks in tongue-clicks, and ends up saying, "Be disemboweled."
  • Necessary Weasel: As to why Spike doesn't leave Team Angel for Buffy. Spike's reasons are less than convincing, but given the complexity of the Spuffy relationship that can easily be put down to Spike not being completely honest with himself.
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: Gunn is also an omniglot thanks to his brain upgrade. Why not just have Wesley translate?
    • FridgeBrilliance kicks in when you factor that Wes is the go to guy on how to track down various demons, and how to kill them. Gunn, as a upgraded lawyer equipped with knowledge of demon laws and customs, is better equipped to assist Angel with something he's not used to. Negotiating with demons instead of just kill them on the spot.
  • No Respect Guy: Harmony really is trying her best to be Angel's perfect secretary, but no-one takes her seriously.
  • Not Helping Your Case: Harmony fails a blood screening and dumps half the company in a maintenance closet as she tries to clear her name.
  • Not Listening to Me, Are You?: Angel nods as Harmony fills him in on his appointments, only to reveal he's listening to a language tape.
    • Also Harmony herself when trying to start a conversation with Toby.
  • Oblivious Mockery: Harmony says the guy she met at the bar told her she was an astronaut. Fred replies, "Like anyone would believe that!"
  • Oh Crap-ola!:
    • Fred's expression when Harmony asks to go out for drinks with her.
    • Harmony waking up next to a body with fang marks. Harmony when she bumps into the blood-testing guy. Harmony thinking she can kick Tamika's ass, until Tamika morphs into Game Face.
  • Omnidisciplinary Scientist: Physics student Fred is now doing autopsies.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: The demons insist that if the murderer of the demon rights activist is not found, a member of Wolfram & Hart must be sacrificed in his place. Harmony accidentally satisfies them on both counts.
  • Political Correctness Gone Mad: Harmony proves to be extremely accepting of cultural differences, arguing in defense of a religious imperative to dismember virgins, and bringing a live camel into the office so Angel could slaughter it and offer pieces of it to their clients.
    • Also "Your 1:00 [appointment] with Mistress Shriva from Human—I'm sorry— Non-Human Resources got moved to 2:00."
  • Professional Buttkisser: Harmony to Angel, for all the good it does.
  • Pun: Harmony gets a wrong number on the internal phone.
    Harmony: I'm sorry. Wrong extension. You need 529 for Curses. Foiled again, huh? (chuckles) Hello?
  • Red Herring: The lady walking her poodle — there's even a reference to the demon clans hating poodles.
  • Reveal Shot: Harmony enters the lobby to find Angel glowering at her.
    Angel: Harmony! Do you wanna explain this?
    Harmony: OK, this is totally my fault. I specifically told the caterers the delivery was for tomorrow.
    (pan over to show a huge camel standing in the middle of the lobby)
  • Running Gag: Harmony being ignored and unappreciated, and knocking out anyone who finds out about her positive blood test.
  • Series Continuity Error: Harmony says that she is a "right-biter." But in the previous episode, "Destiny", she bites Spike on the left.
  • Sexy Walk: We get a nice look at Mercedes McNab's ass wriggling as she carries a mug of blood to the #1 Boss.
  • Slipping a Mickey
  • Superman Stays Out of Gotham: Spike debates whether to reunite with Buffy again, but resigns himself to the knowledge that the show wrapped months ago. Actually, Spike doesn't want to spoil the poignancy of his Heroic Sacrifice on Buffy.
  • Spoof Aesop: Harmony takes comfort knowing that at least someone cared about her enough to kill her.
  • Stranger Behind the Mask
  • Sympathetic P.O.V.: Done from the point of view of Angel's Plucky Comic Relief vampire secretary Harmony, and though she continues to be the Butt-Monkey of the episode, also shows why she can't bring herself to trust the more or less reasonable protagonists; from her point of view they're seeking an excuse to terminate any employee of demonic persuasion with extreme prejudice.
  • Super Strength: Good for lifting dressers to get your shoes or disposing of bodies.
  • Take That!: Starts off with a video apparently made to introduce new Wolfram & Hart employees to the firm. It lists off three companies that are clients of Wolfram & Hart: Yoyodyne, Weyland-Yutani... and News Corp, parent corporation of FOX, the network that screwed Firefly a year earlier.
  • Tempting Fate: Eli walks into Angel's office, smugly assuming he's about to be promoted. Angel cuts his head off.
  • That Came Out Wrong: Harmony saying her co-workers are straight, i.e. not vampires.
  • Throw It In!: Camels are big and not necessarily cuddly animals. Amy Acker's flinch when the camel snorts was not scripted.
  • Unknown Rival: Tamika for Harmony.
  • Verbal Backspace
    Harmony: I'm not a killer! Well, I am, but...
  • We Care: The Wolfram & Hart video.
  • What Could Possibly Go Wrong?: Angel makes it clear that nothing can go wrong during the tense demon negotiations. Having already woken up with a corpse, Harmony whimpers, "What could go wrong?"