Waiting For The Trade

Been watching the first season of Angel on DVD. I’d been thinking that I liked Angel better than Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the series that Angel spun off of. Not because it’s a better series necessarily. Angel tends to be less focused than Buffy, with semi major characters wandering in and out, storylines that vanish and such. It’s just that as a central character Angel is easier to deal with than Buffy.

I finally figured out why in I Will Remember You, the episode in which Angel becomes mortal again during one of Buffy’s visits to LA. He and Buffy fall asleep together and Buffy says that this is what she’s dreamed of – being a normal girl falling asleep in the arms of her normal boyfriend.

Feh. “Normal”.

That’s when it became clear. Never having wanted to be “normal” myself I find it a little hard to sympathize. Buffy spends a lot of time agonizing and complaining about being special. Her aspirations prior to discovering her Chosen One status were simple – be cute and popular. It’s not that Buffy is a bad person, she isn’t. She’s kind and enthusiastic and heroic when she needs to be. She’s also fundamentally shallow and self-centered. Without being the Slayer she’d be happy to be chase boys and gossip and shop. Basically, she’d be someone I’d have no interest in hanging out with.

Angel, on the other hand, has mostly accepted his fate. He’s a champion and, yes, it’s not fun, but that’s life. You do what you gotta do. He likes being by himself. He reads. If he let himself go he could be a really horrible person. And he used to drink a lot when he was mortal.

I can relate to that.

Of course, Buffy is a teenager and Angel is over 200 years old. If he weren’t more mature than she was he’d be pretty pathetic.

I haven’t seen the latest season of Angel. No cable. But I think I’m okay with waiting for the DVD. I like the whole no commercials thing. I look forward to a time when people start creating series just for DVD. No more having to depend on the whims of TV executives. No more demographic targeting or Nielson family jerry-rigging. There’ll still be plenty of crap but there’ll also be a greater chance for a quality series to find an audience and continue because the audience will be supporting the series directly. Film and TV that follows a book publishing model.

My shallow self-centered thought for the minute.