Angel : The Trial (2000)

Genres - Fantasy  |   Sub-Genres - Prime-Time Drama [TV]  |   Run Time - 60 min.  |   Countries - United States  |  
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Synopsis by Brian J. Dillard

Angel (David Boreanaz) tries to assure Cordelia (Charisma Carpenter) and Wesley (Alexis Denisof) that he's recovered from his grief over Darla (Julie Benz). It turns out he's actually had Gunn (J. August Richards) trailing his formerly dead, formerly vampiric former paramour. Lindsey McDonald (Christian Kane) gets to Darla's tenement hotel before Angel can, and, taking her to his superiors at Wolfram & Hart, learns that she was resurrected in the same state she was in before she ever became a vampire. In other words, she's dying of syphilis. In a desperate attempt to escape her looming mortality, Darla later tries to convince a total dweeb of a vampire to "sire" her -- drink and be drunk by her so she can once again become an immortal bloodsucker. Angel interrupts the proceedings, tries to reason with her, and learns of her condition. Crushed, he takes her to Caritas, where the Host (Andy Hallett) sends both of them off on a mystical quest to heal Darla. The Valet (Jim Piddock), an interdimensional functionary, wagers with Angel. If he passes three nearly impossible tests, Darla will be healed; if he fails, she will die immediately. Angel just barely survives the three tests, including one that's more psychological than physical. But even this third challenge is nothing compared to the anguish Angel suffers when the Valet belatedly informs him that because Darla was already resurrected once, she cannot be granted yet another lease on life. Back at Darla's hotel, Angel offers to sire her, theorizing that because he's a vampire with a soul perhaps she will be, too. She demurs, telling him that because of the love and dedication he's shown her, she's content to die the way nature intended 400 years ago. Just then, Wolfram & Hart's minions break in with a surprise guest, Drusilla (Juliet Landau), who promptly drinks Darla's blood and opens her own veins while Angel is held in check. Originally broadcast November 28, 2000, on the WB network, "The Trial" marked season two, episode nine of the supernatural comedy drama. References to the character of Holtz in this episode's flashback sequence will take on new significance in season three when the time-traveling vampire hunter becomes Angel's chief nemesis.