Synopsis by Brian J. Dillard
Thanks to her stint as a higher being, during which she relived every atrocity Angelus (David Boreanaz) ever committed, Cordelia (Charisma Carpenter) now knows that Angel and The Beast (Vladimir Kulich) were once in league with one another. With perpetual night engulfing L.A. in a vampire and demon free-for-all, Wesley (Alexis Denisof) convinces Angel and the others that the only way to defeat The Beast is to consult the evil vampire buried underneath Angel's soul. But as Wes seeks the help of Wo-Pang (Roger Yuan), a sorcerer with the power to remove and store souls, Angel manages the seemingly impossible task of destroying The Beast. He makes amends with estranged son Connor (Vincent Kartheiser) and finally makes love with Cordelia. Then he awakens, mutters the name of a certain vampire slayer, and cackles with the maniacal glee of Angelus. The previous series of unlikely events was nothing but an illusion implanted by Wo-Pang in Angel's mind to give him a moment of true happiness -- the trigger that allows his evil alter ego to emerge. Originally broadcast January 29, 2003, on the WB network, "Awakening" marked season four, episode ten of the supernatural soap opera. The sequence in which Angel and Cordy make love deliberately resembles the night Angel took Buffy's virginity and accidentally unleashed the monster inside himself (see Buffy the Vampire Slayer, "Surprise"). In another strong echo of Angel's parent series, the mystic Wo-Pang appears to be of the same order as the sorcerer who pretended to remove Angel's soul in the Buffy episode "Enemies."