The Trial

Episode Reviews (16)

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  • 9.0

    Angel at the top of it's game

    By joxerlives, Jan 19, 2012

    The Trial

    The Good;

    Love the valet and the trials, they're both excellent, the suprise ending is a killer, thankfully they left Juliet Landau's name out of the credits this time so it's a genuine shock.

    The Bad;

    Very little, terrific ep but Angel seems to be overwhelmed by the WR&H thugs very easily

    Best line:

    Lindsey; "How did you think this was going to end?"

    Jeez, how did they get away with that?

    The trials are almost akin to gorno, especially the key in the vat of Holy Water.

    Apocalypses: 4

    Angel Cliches

    Damsel in distress; oh yeah!


    In disguise; 7

    DB get's his shirt off; oh yeah!


    Cordy's tattoo;3

    Cheap Angel;


    Fang Gang in bondage: Angel chained up by the valet

    Cordy: 5

    Angel: 9

    Wes: 3

    Fang gang knocked out:

    Cordy: 10

    Angel: 12

    Wes: 5

    Doyle; 1

    Gunn; 1


    Cordy: 5 vamps, 1 demons

    Angel; 1 vamp and 1 demon, 18 vamps, 19 and 1/2 demons, 3 humans

    Doyle; 1 vamp

    Wes; 1/2 a demon

    Kate; 3 vamps

    Faith; 16 vamps, 6 demons, 3 humans.

    Gunn; 5 vamps+ 1 demon.

    Fang Gang go evil:

    Cordy: 2

    Angel: 2

    Alternate Fang Gang:

    Cordy: 2

    Angel: 6

    Characters killed:


    Recurring characters killed; Darla dies for the 3rd time


    Total number of Angel Investigations:

    4, Angel, Cordy, Wes and Gunn

    Angel Investigations shot;

    Angel: 10

    Packing heat;

    Wes; 2

    Doyle; 1

    Angel; 1

    Notches on Fang Gang bedpost:

    Cordy: 2 ?+Wilson/Hacksaw Beast

    Angel: 1;Buffy

    Wes; 2; Virginia and the bleached blonde

    Kinky dinky:

    Darla has once more turned to prostitution to support herself.

    Captain Subtext;

    The eps so full he really doesn't have time to appear. Although Darla/Dru I suppose at the end.

    Know the face, different character; 2

    Parking garages;


    Buffy characters on Angel; 13

    Wetherby, Collins and Smith. Angel, Cordy, Oz, Spike, Buffy, Wes, Faith, Darla, Dru, Master

    Questions and observations;

    Oddly Holland believes in god whilst Darla wears a cross whilst tricking (she takes it off when she goes to find a vamp to sire her). Angelus comments that in Romania they know how to treat a creature of the night (Dracula?). Holtz mentioned for the first time. The dumb vamp Darla propositions says he was sired in 1992, by Lothos and co in the Buffy movie? Anne Rice mocked again. Why doesn't Angel sire Darla and then resoul her? He wonders what would happen if he sired someone when he had a soul, in 'Why we fight?' we find out. Jasmine referenced once more. Does JB really sing or is she voiced over? The valet is great, you really could see him as Jeeves, his little 'Use it wisely' speech at the end is reminiscent of Highlander. The actor recurs in a Dollhouse ep where he plays Beyonce's manager.

    One thing, Angel is owed a life restored by magical means. So why does he never call in that marker and try to bring back Doyle, Cordy, Fred etc?

    Marks out of 10; 9/10, Angel at the top of it's game.


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  • 10

    The Trial

    By TrueTvWatcher, Dec 10, 2010

    The Trial was a perfect and very classic episode of Angel. The episode was perfect because Angel went through Trials, like any Hero would, on a Hero's Quest. I also thought Darla or Julie Benz played human really well, and I see where she got her role for Rita in the tv show Dexter which was not on air until well after the series Angel was run and in syndication. I really enjoyed watching this episode which had lots of character development, action, intriuge, and surprise. I really enjoyed the ending, and it seemed very fitting. I can't wait to see what will happen next!!!!!!!moreless

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  • 9.8

    Angel goes on a quest for Darla's life.

    By TwistedConverse, Sep 28, 2010

    The Trial is without a doubt, in the top 10 all time Angel episodes. Every single scene screamed with excellence and there is no single fault with it whatsoever. The twist at the end is still shocking no matter how many times I've seen it. The whole episode is built around Darla dying but when she does at the end, it's entirely unexpected and takes a while to sink in. Darla hits rock bottom in this episode: the evil law firm that brought her back from the dead and have been most of the reason why her mental state is deteriorating fast tell her she's dying of a syphilitic heart condition. She's so desperate to live and to be free of her humanity, she goes to a vampire bar and picks the biggest loser there to sire her. This really gives us insight to how scared she is of dying- to have this disease is the worst thing imaginable for her as she hasn't had to fear disease for 400 years. But as the episode goes on she begins to accept her fate- evident when Angel is told he has to die to save her and she screams "No!" suggesting she'd prefer to die than watch him die. At the end of the episode, she's finally accepted it and decided to let death take her when her time is up. Darla has evolved so much since her first appearance as a human- to face death and accept it when you've been living for 400 years is a tough thing to do but she does.

    Angel's quest to save her proves he does care about her on a deep level. Their connection is so deep that he sacrifices himself to save her- he doesn't die of coure but he's willing to. He feels that if Darla can achieve redemption, then maybe there's a chance he can too and by saving her, he's saving himself. Darla recognizes his feelings for her saying "No one's ever cared about like you have". Angel's anger when the man at the Trials refuses to heal Darla even though he passed is shocking. He's so broken that she's going to die- their relationship is so powerful. The Trials were a very unique way for Angel to win Darla's life. The first stage was a rather generic fight but the second stage is awesome. Watching Angel run across a floor of crucifixes and have to place his hand in holy water to get the key was intense. The set used was magnificent, giving off a holy, eerie vibe. The last stage was good also- the wall of stakes was a nice idea. Cordy, Wesley and Gunn weren't really central to this episode- a good thing as they don't really fit in to the Darla arc much and their role is sort of the same every episode: nag Angel about Darla. It does get tiresome after a while. The final scene is one of my favourite scenes of any TV show ever. Darla had finally accepted her death and at that pivotal moment, Lindsey burst in with armed guards who knock Angel out and Drusilla enters, turning Darla into a vampire. It's so shocking and gripping; it's near impossible to look away from the screen. Lindsey was annoying in this episode- I was glad Angel mocked him for loving Darla as he's blind to not see she has no interest in him. Drusilla was a welcome addition and the perfect vampire to kill Darla- it was an excellent idea to have her do it. Angel's face is so full of pain as he watches her die. It's an amazing twist. Also, the music in this scene is truly epic and flawless- it made that entire scene feel so much more intense and scary- especially when Drusilla bites Darla. It was standout.

    The Trial is an episode that will leave you stunned. It's without a doubt the best so far and it's virtually flawless. A true gem.moreless

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  • 9.1

    Trial By Death!

    By lenzinoH20, Jul 29, 2007

    The Trial-Angel is still haunted by memories of his 150-year relationship with Darla and asks Gunn to help him track her down. He soon discovers, however, that he is faced with an impossible choice: watch her die from a terminal illness or "save" her by turning her once again into a soulless monster.

    Such a great episode that puts us back into the Darla Arc full force. You can't help but feel Darla this hour, she as a human she got killed by syphilis at an early age, then was forced to become a soulless creature for 400 years, to get killed and brought back as a human only to die again. It makes Angel's suffering seem stable in comparison. David and Julie continue to act so compassionately together, while rest of the main cast has some fun bashing Darla. Like Cordelia and Wesley delievering some funny lines like:

    Darla: "I played mind games...we both palyed mindgames."

    Cordelia: "Yeah, but you were a souless blood sucking demon, they're lawyers."


    Wesley: "We well hit you on the head

    Cordelia: "With large objects."

    The ancient trial part of the episode was the best part with a great setting and some elaborate fighting. There are also some disturbing parts like the long hall with crosses on the floor and walls! Let's just say watching Angel going through that obstacle was brutal to watch and the holy water to top it all...OUCH! But it was so sad scene where the trial Overseer couldn't save Darla. Just Angel's reaction was so heartbreaking and David played it perfectly. The episode ends shockingly with Lindsey bringing in Drusilla to bite Darla and make her into a vampire again. It's an intense scene watching the Drusilla sire Darla and the denseless look Angel gives as he watches Darla die! You just can't wait to see what happens next! All and All, a top-notch episode which sets up greatly of probably the best episode of Angel's run.moreless

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  • 9.5

    Druscilla turns Darla.

    By mattmegmom, May 28, 2007

    Angel tries to save Darla from mortal death by taking on 3 challenges. While he succeeds, unfortunately the reprieve is unsuccessful since there seems to be a rule that a person can only be brought back as a mortal mystically one time and W&H already did this.

    Angel vows to stay with Darla through the end and Darla seems to be ready to face her death as a mortal having seen what Angel was willing to give up to save her.

    It appears W&H had a backup plan and brought Druscilla back to turn Darla. Sets up for some pretty interesting episodes to come.moreless

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  • 9.6

    Angel is determined to save Darla from her fate.

    By Senya81, Mar 31, 2007

    Death is inevitable for every human being. For the first Darla escaped death (paradoxically) when she was turned into a vampire, the second time when she was brought back by Wolfram & Hart. Now she is in need of a third rescue as doctors declare she has only a few weeks to live.

    Angel becomes desperate to find another way to help her aside turning her back into a vampire what Darla is wishing for. He partakes in a mystical trial where his faith, courage, determination and compassion are tested. Angel passes the tests, but the forces can't restore Darla, because she has already had her second chance at life. During the trial, Darla gets to experience everything Angel goes through for her, Angel's pain, love, and caring, and it serves as a revelation that helps her accept the death she is facing. The episode ends in a heartbreaking scene, where Angel promises Darla won't have to be alone anymore, that he will be with her all the way. But Wolfram & Hart has other plans for Darla, and the episode ends in a most shocking note.moreless

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  • 7.5

    The Trial for Darla's Life

    By SMGslayer97, Jan 21, 2007

    In an attempt to save Darla from the cancer that was killing her all those years ago before she was first sired, Angel seeks out a mystical test that will earn him her life back. And boy oh by does he get tested. A demon that it practicly impossible to beat because he is more or less vulnerable, holy water, crosses, stakes, and whole lotta hell. And for Darla, that part I don't get but okay. After he passes this test and earns her life he is told that because her life was altered once before by mystical forces that nothing can be done. She was already given a second chance, a second life. And though it is a second chance and Darla and Angel almost comes to grips with it Wolfram & Hart still have other things in mind, after all they were the one's that brought her back, and join forces with a new ally. Another Sunnydale alumni, to bring her back to their team.moreless

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  • 9.7

    This episode provides a nice follow up to ‘Darla’ and proves to be a pivotal episode for the rest of the season.

    By funkyfresh5, Jan 20, 2007

    Another brilliant episode from season 2, in which we get to see Angel do what he does best: play the hero.

    His desire to save Darla from the disease that the human version of her was dying from all those years ago is truly heart warming. Although Angel has saved many damsels in distress in the past, this is the first time (though not the last) that we feel he is truly invested in the person he is trying to save.

    Wolfram and Hart. Their contribution in this episode indicates that perhaps they knew she would know all along even before they brought her back The fact that Hollad Manners so desperately wants Angel to turn Darla in order to get him to embrace their dark side shows that they don’t really seem to know Angel at all. However may be they do know Darla whose first actions upon hearing this news is to go out and try and get turned by a rather dumb vampire. Darla’s desperation shines through here so its very believable when she agrees to go with Angel.

    The scene with Lindsey and Angel is really well written. Both hate each other but are bounded by one thing- Darla. Lindsey is actually rather nice to Angel here showing how much he cares for her, a fact that Angel soon realises.

    Angel’s admission that Darla is in fact Darla leads to another wonderful Caritas moment, this time from Darla. Pretty much every character this season sings at Caritas and each brings something truly wonderful to the episode. Darla’s song is very sultry and sexy and fits the mood of the episode perfectly.

    Lorne then leads Angel and Darla to the heart of the episode, the Trials. Compeered by an English butler (random!) these trials are such fun to watch. My favourite has to be the second one where Angel must walk over crosses and dip his hand deep into Holy Water, all very graphic but such a powerful scene.

    The final trial has to be the strongest though with Angel accepting death for his sires life, even though he knows it may be better for the world to let her die. Its actions like these that catapult Angel towards achieving the Shanshu.

    Sadly though and because this is a Joss Whedon show, nothing is that simple and Darla is forced to accept her death in a truly tender moment with Angel. Unfortunately for the pair, again there is another twist is a truly shocking and explosive scene; Lindsey brings back Drusilla to sire Darla just as Darla was starting to find peace. Lindsey’s actions are mostly selfish here but it makes for some great tv!

    Wes, Gunn and Cordy take a backseat in this episode, they appear very little, foreshadowing for future episodes perhaps?

    Overall this is a wonderful episode, both well written and acted that ranks very highly in the season and series.moreless

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  • 9.9

    What do you do when a person can't be saved? Try anyway!

    By mattsafreak, Jan 02, 2007

    This was another one of the best of Season 2. Angel tracks down Darla (thanks to Gunn) and soon finds her in a dive bar trying to get "made" by a nerdy vamp. After berating her for her behavior, Angel finds out she is dying. He doesnt want to accept this, since W&H is behind it all. He soon finds out that it is, indeed, true. He takes Darla to Caritas and the host hears her sing (good song!) and tells Angel of a way he might be able to save her. Angel is desperate and will do anything, as we soon find out. He goes through the Trials, and in the end is willing to die to save her. This should be enough, right?? Well, turns out since Darla was brought back to life once already, all bets are off. In the end, Angel is almost willing to turn her himself but she (Surprise!) talks him out of it because she has seen how much Angel cares by what he has already done. This was perhaps one of the sweetest moments I have seen so far with these two...and then....Enter Lindsey with (dum dum DUM!) Drusilla. Dru ends up turning Darla as a helpless Angel looks on.moreless

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