Power Play

Season 5, Ep 21, Aired 5/12/04
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  • Episode Description
  • Drogyn arrives in L.A., badly wounded, to point the finger at his attacker. Wesley discovers a strange symbol in one of his books which turns out to be the mark for an evil, secret society. The circumstances of Fred's death come into question, and as Team Angel tries to figure out who is responsible they begin to fear that their leader has become corrupted by the power Wolfram & Hart have given him.moreless

  • Cast & Crew
  • David Boreanaz


  • James A. Contner

  • David Fury

  • Jenny Mollen

    Nina Ash

  • Elimu Nelson


  • Fan Reviews (11)
  • Powerfully penultimate

    By joxerlives, Jan 22, 2012

  • Power Play

    By TrueTvWatcher, Dec 30, 2010

  • Leading up to the end.

    By dmarex, Feb 15, 2010

  • The beginning of the end.

    By TwistedConverse, Aug 23, 2008

  • Corruption's The Name of the Game

    By lenzinoH20, Dec 28, 2007

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (13)

    • Illyria: (about Wesley) My recent reversion to the Burkle persona disturbed him. And he will not tell me why. Spike: You don't know? You may not think you're as powerful as you were, Highness, but looking like Fred, for some of us, is the most devastating power you have.

    • Lorne: Oh, so this whole Evil Angel thing’s been a big scamola. Huh. I smell Oscar.

    • Angel: This isn't a keep fighting the good fight kind of deal. Let's be clear on this. I'm talking about killing every ... single ... member ... of the Black Thorn. We don't walk away from that. Lorne: Do we crawl away at least? Angel: We do this, the senior partners will rain their full wrath. They'll make an example of us. I'm talkin' full-on hell, not the basic fire-and-brimstone kind that we're used to. Gunn: We know the drill. Angel: No, you don't. Ten to one, we're gone when the smoke clears. They will do everything in their power to destroy us. So ... I need you to be sure. Power endures. We can't bring down the senior partners, but for one bright, shining moment we can show them that they don't own us. You need to decide for yourselves, if that's worth dying for. I can't order you to do this. But I can't do it without you. So ... we'll vote as a team. Think about what I'm asking you to do. Think about what I'm asking you to give. Spike: Kill 'em all, right? Burn the house down, while we're still in it. Angel: Something like that.

    • Angel: The powerful control everything, except our will to choose...

    • Lorne: It's like Angel suddenly started channeling Leona Helmsley.

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    Notes (2)

    • The flashback to Cordelia, Doyle's musical score from "Hero" (1x09), and seemingly misdirection of Fred's storyline are all nods to the three dead regular characters on the show. In the final episode, Hamilton mentions them, but this episode pays tribute to each one.

    • Both the Angel and Buffy the Vampire Slayer penultimate episodes end with the same camera shot--something happening in the center of a room, and the camera panning out to someone watching from the side, unbeknownst to the others. In this case, Hamilton was watching Team Angel, while in the BtVS second to last episode "End of Days," Buffy and Angel are kissing, and Spike is watching from the shadows, being taunted by the First Evil.

    Trivia (2)

    • Members of the Circle of the Black Thorn include: Senator Bruckner who was introduced in this episode, Cyvus Vail from "Origin" (5x18), Izzy (the devil) from "You're Welcome" (5x12), the Fell Brethren Leader from "Time Bomb" (5x19), and Archduke Sebassis from "Life of the Party" (5x05).

    • Senator Brucker: Oh, I go way back with this firm, back when Holland Manners was in charge. Seemingly, Holland was never in charge of the entire Wolfram & Hart law firm. He was head of the "Special Projects" division.

    Allusions (7)

    • Spike: (about Illyria) I haven't had a decent tussle since the blue meanie and I stopped sparring. The Blue Meanies were villainous haters of music in the Beatles' animated film Yellow Submarine.

    • Lorne: These are very pretty people I'm talking about here, Wes, four of them getting in shape for Young Guns III.
      Young Guns is a 1988 action/western film; its stars include Emilio Estevez, Kiefer Sutherland, Lou Diamond Phillips, Charlie Sheen, Dermot Mulroney, and Casey Siemaszko as famous (or soon to be famous) young outlaws. As of the airing of this episode, there were only two films in the series.

    • Spike: So you tacked up a sign on your tree, waved bye to the Keeblers, hopped the puddle... The Keebler Elves are the animated mascots of the Keebler company. Commercials show them making all of the Keebler crackers and cookies in their hollow tree.

    • Angel: Software, oil, World Wide Wickets, the product doesn't matter.
      World Wide Wickets is the name of the company in the Broadway musical How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.

    • Gunn: (to Drogyn) Then you're the liar, Aragorn.
      Aragorn is the name of a character in The Lord of the Rings, played in the movie version by actor Viggo Mortensen.

    Show More Allusions
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