"The Prodigal"
Written by Tim Minear; directed by Bruce Seth Green

It’s 1753 in Galway, Ireland, which means that we’re about to see Angel’s first Angel flashback. (Try to contain your excitement.) Angel, originally Liam, talks with his father’s maid Anna after (ostensibly) a night of drinking. His father calls him a disgrace and accuses him of trying to corrupt Anna. Liam tells him that everything is corrupted eventually. Liam’s father hits him, telling him that he’ll never amount to anything. Liam wipes the blood off of his lip and, in the present, Angel does the same while fighting a demon in a subway tunnel. Kate and another officer arrive at the subway station, talking about a homeless guy who went crazy on a subway, took a hostage, and escaped. All of the witnesses are saying that he was pulled through the roof of the train while it was moving. Angel and the demon continue their fight and Kate arrives just as the demon collapses. She realizes that the demon is the “homeless guy” and obviously not human. Kate is still lost on the whole demon vs. human thing and isn’t sure what to do with the demon’s body. Angel tells her that he’ll take care of it and to fill out her report the way she normally would. He says that she’s probably seen this sort of thing before but didn’t realize it. The other office gets a delivery guy’s statement, learning that he was the one who pulled the emergency brake because, well, “it was an emergency.” The cops get a description of the “suspect” and decide to circulate it. Angel notes that Kate’s father is there and Kate goes to ask him why. After Trevor leaves, Kate tells Angel that she thinks her father was checking up on her. When he tries to have a conversation with her, she tells him that he can’t just kill a demon in front of her and then pretend that they’re friends. She says that they need to keep their relationship professional.

Back in 1753, Darla (Julie Benz) watches Liam in a tavern fight and asks a barmaid who he is. (For more information on Darla, see “Angel” and “Becoming, Part 1.”) He’s on his way over to talk to her when someone knocks him out with a bottle. In the present, Cordelia has had an alarm system installed at the office and wants to use her birthday as the code. Wesley finds the demon Angel fought in a book - it’s a Kwaini, which are all females. However, the book says that Kwaini are also peaceful demons. Wesley and Angel wonder if someone or something on the subway made the Kwaini combative. Angel goes to see Kate at the police station, but she objects to talking about the demon in public and asks him to call it an “evil thing.” This leads to confusion when she learns that some “evil things,” like the Kwaini, aren’t actually evil. He asks her for the names of the passengers on the train, thinking that the train may have been targeted for a reason. He thinks that the delivery guy is a good person to start with. She, however, wants to forget about what happened and won’t give him any help. In his car, Angel calls Wesley and fills him in, saying that Kate has been acting differently since the events of “Somnambulist.” Wesley tells him that some people, particularly women, have a hard time adjusting to learning about evil forces. Cordelia, however, seems to have adjusted well, since she’s currently cutting into the Kwaini with a hacksaw. Angel has followed the delivery guy and asks Wesley why he would be on a commuter train when he should have been driving his van. The delivery guy drives off and Angel hangs up, then follows him. The guy heads to an apartment building, where Trevor gives him a package.

After the delivery guy leaves, Angel goes to Trevor’s apartment (note that he stays in the hall - Trevor doesn’t invite him inside) and reminds him that they met in “Sense and Sensitivity.” He asks Trevor what was in the package he gave the delivery guy and accuses him of removing evidence from the subway station crime scene. He tells Trevor that he’ll find out what’s going on and Trevor asks if Angel is threatening him. Angel says that he’s trying to protect Kate from finding out that Trevor wasn’t at the crime scene because he wanted to check up on her. Trevor tells Angel that since he’s not a father (um, yet), he doesn’t know why Trevor would do the things he does. Back in the past, Liam prepares to leave his father’s house. He says goodbye to his younger sister Kathy, telling her that they’ll meet again. Liam’s father tells him that he’s a disappointment, but Liam thinks that he couldn’t fail enough for his father’s tastes. As Liam picks up the barmaid, we see Darla in the alley, soon joined by Liam (again, see “Becoming, Part 1”). She bites and sires him. Back in the present, Trevor and Kate have lunch together and Trevor asks her about Angel. Kate tells him that he’s not her type and there’s nothing going on between them. She says that he’s a private investigator and “doesn’t mind working nights.” Kate wonders why Trevor is asking about Angel, since she thinks they only met once, and he tells her that “it’s not good to be alone.”

At Angel’s apartment, Wesley has finished vivisecting the Kwaini and announces that it was given some kind of drug that enlarged its adrenal gland, making it stronger and more violent. Angel and Wesley worry about what would happen if a demon that was already powerful were given the drug. A disguised Cordelia returns from tailing the delivery guy (Angel couldn’t, since the sun’s out) and reveals that the delivery guy really is a delivery guy. She shows Angel and Wesley a video that she took, which shows the guy at a car warehouse, the place Angel thinks is his main source. Meanwhile, Trevor is at possibly the same auto shop, looking for information on Angel. He asks an employee what was in the package on the train, saying that he only agreed to help them transport untariffed parts. Trevor isn’t happy that he had to remove evidence and give Kate the third degree, so the employee compensates him for his trouble. Trevor warns the guy to go a little easier on what he’s moving. After he leaves, the employee asks a demon what they should do about Angel. The demon tells him to kill both him and Trevor. Back in 1753, Liam’s family attends his funeral; his mother and sister are upset but his father is stoic. Liam’s gravestone reads, “1727-1753, Beloved Son.” That night, Darla goes to Liam’s grave and watches him climb out of it. A groundskeeper spots them and accuses them of robbing graves. Darla encourages Liam to kill the groundskeeper, which he does. Darla tells Liam that he can have anyone in the village now. Liam decides that he’ll take the village itself.

Cordelia finishes setting up the alarm system, telling Wesley that demons can’t get in now. Angel announces that he’s going to the car warehouse and wants Wesley to stay behind. Kate arrives without setting off the security alarm, much to Cordelia’s surprise. Kate gives Angel the list of passengers and tells him that her father changed her mind when he asked if Angel was good at his job and she realized that he is. She says that she wants to be involved in the case and that he should let her know if he finds something out. Later, Angel is about to leave when Wesley says that he appreciates him wanting to protect Kate, but he shouldn’t warn Trevor again. Wesley thinks that it’s Trevor’s choice if he wants to be involved in something dangerous, but Angel thinks that he’s just made one bad decision and shouldn’t have to pay for it. Just after Angel leaves, a demon bursts into the office (the security system announces, “The door is open”). Another demon enters from the bathroom (“bathroom window is ajar”) and Cordelia and Wesley start fighting them. Angel returns and joins in the fighting, trying to get a demon to talk while Cordelia unplugs the annoying security system. Later, Angel heads to his car, leaving a message for Kate telling her to get to her father as soon as she gets the message. As the employee at the auto shop and one of his cronies arrive at Trevor’s apartment and announce that they need to talk about Kate, Angel continues his message to Kate, saying that Trevor “doesn’t know what they are.”

Back in the past, Liam’s father nails up his window from the inside, apparently doing what everyone else in their village is doing. Liam’s father points out that, since he’s a demon, he couldn’t enter the house without an invitation. Liam tells him that he was invited by his now-dead sister, who thought he had returned as an angel (hence his new nickname, Angelus). Angelus’ father tries to attack him, but Angelus notes that he doesn’t seem as threatening anymore. He mocks that his father never thought he’d become anything, but he’s actually managed to make something of himself. At Trevor’s apartment, the auto shop guy asks if he’s mentioned his “association” with him to Kate. Trevor assures him that he hasn’t and that he doesn’t want Kate to get involved in the stuff he’s involved in. Angel arrives and knocks on the door, asking Trevor to invite him in. Angel sees that Trevor isn’t alone and demands that he be invited in. The two auto shop guys morph into vamp faces and grab Trevor. Angel tells them that the second Trevor is dead he’ll be able to enter and he’ll kill the guys. They don’t seem to care and just start drinking him. When they’re done, Angel runs in and stakes one of the guys. The other one escapes as Kate arrives, seeing her father dead and crying over his body. Angel tells her that Trevor invited the vampires in and didn’t know who they were. Kate reminds him that he knew and didn’t stop them. Angel promises that he wanted to, but that Trevor wouldn’t let him in. Kate pulls a Dawn and yells for him to get out.

Back at the office, Angel loads up with weapons and tells Wesley he’s moving on to plan B. Kate, still in her father’s apartment, spots an envelope full of money and a business card from the auto shop. She heads over there, shooting three vamps and telling them that she knows what they are. She stakes one of the guys and shoots the others again. She’s quickly joined by Angel, who helps with the fighting. Once everything is dead, he tells her that she shouldn’t trust evil evil things. He says that he knew what happened to her father, but she says that he was human and Angel didn’t know anything about him. In the past, Darla and Angelus sit in his house, his dead family around them, and Angelus says that he proved to his father who has the power. “Your victory over him too but moments,” Darla points out, “but his defeat of you will last lifetimes.” Angelus says that his father can’t defeat him anymore, but Darla replies, “What we once were informs all that we have become. The same love will infect our hearts, even if they no longer beat. Simple death won’t change that.” Angelus is surprised that she considers the massacres an act of love and she says that he’s too young to understand. In the present, Kate visits Trevor’s grave and puts down some flowers as Angel watches. Trevor’s gravestone is similar to Liam’s.

MORAL, or CRAMMING COMPLEX ISSUES INTO A NUTSHELL: Not all “evil things” are evil, but some of them are.

R.I.P.: Trevor

GRADE: B Get used to the flashbacks. And Darla.

WELCOME TO L.A.: Darla (well, okay, she’s not technically in L.A., but it’s her first time on the show)

MEMORABLE QUOTES: Angel: “I don’t know your birthday.”
Cordelia: “Yeah, tell me something that you don’t know that I don’t know.”

Angel: “It’s just that the, uh, evil thing - turns out it wasn’t an evil thing.”
Kate: “The evil thing wasn’t an evil thing?”
Angel: “Well, it was an evil thing in terms of that word. It just wasn’t an evil evil thing.”
Kate: “There are not-evil evil things?”

Cordelia: “First off, I hate following detail.”
Wesley: “The voyeuristic aspect is rather unseemly.”
Cordelia: “Uh, can I mention traffic? And parking, or the complete lack of it?”
Angel: “Not like in the movies, is it?”
Cordelia: “No!”

Wesley: “Fools rush in….”
Cordelia: “No, he wants you to stay here.”

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