The Trial

Episode Report Card
Strega: C- | 1 USERS: B+
The Trial

After some commercials, Hurt tells Angel that before they get started, he'll need Angel's shirt and shoes. I'll bet Angel hears that a lot. Angel asks whether the first trial is unarmed combat, and Hurt says, "Well, you'll be unarmed, yes." Angel reveals his freshly-waxed chest as he asks what the three challenges are. Hurt doesn't think it's proper to divulge that information, since he's never provided information to other challengers. "How many of 'em asked?" Angel wonders. Hurt hesitates, and then admits that the first challenge is "child's play." He directs Angel's attention to an archway barred with an iron grating, and says, "Once that gate opens, all you have to do is walk through it." Angel is skeptical, and asks what the catch is. Hurt says, "That would be telling." Angel gives up on that one, and asks about the other two challenges. Hurt says he doesn't know anything about them, since he's never seen anyone survive the first challenge. Oh, how ominous. I've gotten fortune cookies that were scarier than this guy. He wishes Angel luck, and then fades out for an iced beverage of his own. The gate slowly rises up slightly, and then a big green goblin (not the one from the comic book, mind you) steps out from an alcove. Hey, remember that episode last season, "The Ring"? Well, here we go again. The goblin swings a big chain around its head. Angel plays jump rope for a while. Then he runs up along the outside of an archway to get away. The point is, they fight.

In the dungeon's green room, Darla and Hurt stand by the lovely buffet table. Two goblin guards stand in the background. Hurt notes that Angel has already lasted seventeen seconds, which is twice the amount of time most challengers last. Darla asks him to call the whole thing off, but Hurt says that he can't. It's just like when Mr. Roarke would say, "Once a fantasssssy has begun, it cannot be stopped." But then other times he'd pop in at a particularly unpleasant part of the fantasy, and say, "If you wish, I can stop the fantassssy now, and you will return unharmed." That always bugged me. Mr. Roarke was a big jerk. Where was I? Oh, yeah, Darla says she that she needs to see what's happening, and Hurt says okay, and touches her forehead. She closes her eyes for a second and sees blipvertish flashes of Angel getting the old goblin-boot to the head. She looks unhappy about it, but I'm actually enjoying that image.

Back to the fighting, now in Darla-vision. Angel does some scampering around in the alcoves, and finally manages to grab the goblin's sword and slice him neatly in two. Phew, says everyone. Angel heads for the gate, which still hasn't risen high enough for him to pass beneath. Behind him, the goblin opens his eyes and pushes himself up so that his torso is hand-walking around. "I'll bite your knees off!" Johanna cries. You know how some people say, "Pull yourself together"? Well, this is what they mean. Angel turns around in time to watch as the goblin hand-walks over to his lower half and jams his torso back into place. And so they're back to the chains swinging and so on. This time Angel goes straight in and cuts the goblin in half again. Then he uses the goblins chain-and-grappling-hook gear to fasten each half to wall sconces at far ends of the room. The goblin arghs unhappily about this treatment, but the gate rises up and Angel passes through the door. In the green room, Darla asks, "Is this how a guy like you gets his rocks off?" Hurt assures her that he has no personal interest in how it all works out. "Do you?" he asks, as if he just got there and missed the part where her life is at stake. So yeah, I think she probably does have a personal interest. The hell?

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