"That Vision Thing"
Written by Jeffrey Bell; directed by Bill Norton

Wesley and Gunn are eating Chinese take-out in the lobby of the Hyperion and discussing how to act around Cordelia. Cordelia passes by and the two guys say “hi” to her; Gunn then asks Wesley how genuine his greeting sounded. From under Angel’s mini-desk, Fred gives the greeting a “B plus. C minus.” Wesley points out to her that the idea behind coming downstairs to eat with them was to actually spend time with them. She emerges from under the table but doesn’t go so far as to accept a fork to eat with. Cordelia walks back through, receiving more greetings, and tells the guys that she knows what they’re doing - they’re trying to figure out how to treat her since it’s been awhile since she had a vision. Fred asks Cordelia if she can have a vision and find out where Angel is; Gunn explains that Cordelia can’t have visions at will. Gavin (see “Over the Rainbow”) enters the hotel and Cordelia mistakes him for a client, complimenting his nice shoes. Angel arrives and Gavin gives him a list of the hotel’s code violations; Angel makes it clear that he doesn’t care about them. After Gavin leaves, Cordelia has a vision of a coin and “two clawed things,” possibly in an herbalist’s shop in Chinatown. She heads to the bathroom and Wesley knocks on the door, asking her if the beast in the vision had four or five claws. She responds that it had five as she checks the claw marks on her stomach. Back in the lobby, Wesley does research as Fred looks through a phone book for herbalists. As Wesley and Gunn ready themselves to go fight demons, Angel asks Fred for a favor. Angel heads to the bathroom and tells Cordelia that he asked Fred to take her home (an interesting choice, since Fred just came out from under a table for the first time five minutes earlier). She tries to protest that she doesn’t want to go home but Angel talks her into it.

Angel, Gunn, and Wesley drive through L.A., on their way to the only herbalist shop in Chinatown that they haven’t visited yet. “Next time we’re hitting the last place first,” Gunn announces. They enter the herbalist shop, where a woman who runs the place tells Angel that vampires aren’t allowed inside. Wesley tells her and her husband that they’re looking for a coin; the couple flips over the counter and their hands turn into claws. The MoG knock the couple out and Angel finds the coin on a strap of leather around the man’s neck. At Wolfram & Hart, Gavin tells Lilah that he’s been moved to the Special Projects division from Real Estate. He offers to let her work with him on something he’s doing about Angel Investigations. She tells him that she earned Lindsey’s office and criticizes Gavin for not doing much to go up against Angel. Gavin assures her that he’s fighting Angel in his own way. At her apartment, Cordelia tries to convince Fred that she can leave; Fred is busy eating peanut butter, which she hasn’t had for a long time. She argues that Angel told her to stay with Cordelia until he called but she’s fine and wants to be alone. Fred tells Cordelia that she’s “like Angel’s Lassie,” since her visions “tell him that Timmy is trapped in the well, or the robbers are hiding in the barn.” Cordelia is about to kick Fred out, with some help from Phantom Dennis, when she has another vision, which renders her unconscious and leaves boils on her face. The MoG gather in the apartment, where Cordelia tells them about a boil-covered demon, a downtown storefront, and a key. Angel tries to get her to talk about the physical manifestations of her visions; she doesn’t understand why the Powers That Be would give them to her. Fred wonders if there’s a way to communicate with the Powers That Be which can be determined through science. Wesley sends her back to the Hyperion for books and tells Angel to find the demon and the key. Angel refuses to leave Cordelia, but Wesley tells him to trust him.

Angel finds the storefront from the vision and demands the key from the owner; unfortunately, there are dozens of keys in the shop. The owner starts to get the key from the drawing Angel has, but hits a button instead, setting off a buzzer and releasing the demon from the vision. On their way to the Hyperion, Fred tells Gunn that she knows he’s disappointed that he couldn’t go fight with Angel; he said he’d rather be walking a pretty girl home. When they arrive at the hotel, they’re met by guys who tell them that they’re fumigating the building. Angel returns to Cordelia’s apartment with the key; Lorne has arrived at the apartment while Angel was gone. Wesley thinks that since Lorne has a connection to the Powers That Be, he might be able to “trace the call” from the Powers to Cordelia and reverse what’s happened to her. Cordelia worries both about causing more problems inside her head and losing her visions for good. Lorne decides to give the “tracing” a try. At Wolfram & Hart, Lilah is meeting with a guy in a fez (so we’ll just call him Fez), who’s doing some sort of job for her. He levitates on her desk and takes off his fez to reveal a really big brain. At her apartment, Cordelia’s having another vision, this one of a guy on fire and a bronze demon. Lorne is thrown backwards and Cordelia’s arms appear burned when the vision is over. In Lilah’s office, Fez puts his fez back on and tells Lilah, “I think she got the message.” Cordelia makes sure that Lorne’s going to be okay, then wonders if she’s a bad person and is being punished for something. Angel tells her that she’s stronger than she realizes. Upset, she says that she changed her mind and doesn’t want the visions anymore; she tried to be brave but now she’s scared. Out in the living room, Fred announces Lorne’s news that the visions aren’t coming from the Powers That Be, but rather from someone on Earth. Lilah is playing golf on her computer when Angel arrives, claiming that Gavin helped him get into the building without being detected. He gives her the coin and key, which she confirms that she wanted, but she gives them back. She tells him that there’s a man who’s been “unfairly imprisoned” (that’s what she thinks, at least) and Angel needs the coin and key in order to rescue him. Angel grabs Lilah by the throat and tells her that she’ll make the visions stop if he helps her out.

Wesley looks over the coin and key at the Hyperion; he reveals that they’re “objects of good,” which means that the Chinese couple and the demon were good guys. “So hard to tell these days,” Angel complains. “You know, they should wear lapel pins or something.” Wesley adds that the coin and key will transport Angel to and from another dimension (which may or may not contain fire and guards). Wesley points out that, since Wolfram & Hart are involved, the mission can’t be good, and Lilah may be lying about the guy being imprisoned unfairly. Wesley reminds Angel that helping Wolfram & Hart goes against what he believes in, adding that he wants to go along. Angel refuses to let him; he wants him to stay behind in case something goes wrong. Wesley puts the key in the coin, then turns it and tosses it on the floor, where it spins like a top. A ring of smoke and light comes out of the key and Angel steps into it. As they disappear, Angel’s weapons drop to the floor of the Hyperion. Angel winds up in a chamber, then heads into a room where a guy is trapped inside a cube of fire. A bronze demon guarding the cube tells Angel that the guy has to be evil because only the really evil guys get sent there. The demon introduces himself as Skip (David Denman) and he and Angel talk about his commute. Skip reveals that his will keeps the guy inside the cube; the guy is screaming in pain, but Skip’s will keeps him from being heard. Skip wonders why Angel is there, since he works for the Powers That Be and they’re on the same side. They start fighting and Angel knocks Skip out, automatically releasing the guy from the cube. Back in L.A., Angel, Wesley, Gunn, and the guy from the cube drive out to meet two limos from Wolfram & Hart. Lilah talks to Fez as Wesley calls Fred at Cordelia’s apartment; Fred watches Cordelia and tells Wesley when her physical manifestations disappear. Angel releases the guy from the cube, then stabs Fez in the head with a piece of rebar. He tells Lilah that if she ever uses Cordelia to come after him again, he’ll kill her. The next morning, Cordelia makes breakfast for Angel and thanks him for what he did. However, she’s worried that the guy he released will cause trouble. (She must be psychic - see “Billy.”) In the mountains of Honduras, Darla (see “Heartthrob”) visits a shaman to talk about her baby. He tells her that he can’t help her, saying, “This is not meant to be known.” “Time to go visit Daddy,” she decides.”


GRADE: B- This episode mostly just sets things up for “Billy,” but it also shows how much Angel cares about Cordelia.


MEMORABLE QUOTES: “Yeah, okay, minion of darkness, Satan’s toady, but that is a nice suit.” - Cordelia, re: Gavin

Fred: “I-I never understood that saying, ‘right as rain.’ How is rain right? Or wrong, for that matter? Okay, I suppose if there’s a flood, it’s wrong. And speaking of floods, or maybe just being overwhelmed, what’s it like to have a vision?”
Cordelia: “Wow. You know, next to you, I am downright linear.”

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