Season 5 Episode 6

The Cautionary Tale of Numero Cinco

Aired Wednesday 9:00 PM Nov 05, 2003 on The WB
out of 10
User Rating
393 votes

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Episode Summary

While researching an Aztec warrior named Tezcatcatl, Angel discovers that one of the employees of Wolfram & Hart is connected to the case. This old man was once one of 'Los Hermanos Numeros', a family of Luchadores (Mexican wrestlers) which helped the helpless until one day they were slain by Tezcatcatl. In the present day, Angel tries to help the last member discover the hero inside which he lost when his family were killed.moreless

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  • Angel enters the world of mexican was really funny

    This is an odd episode, completely different from almost every other episode of angel or even Buffy. But that's because they're dealing with a different type of mythology. all demons and vampires and other creatures portrayed until this episode where inspired in different european traditions. This time the writers seem to realise that on this side of the continent are also good monster stories worth to be told. And what better way to destroy an aztec (mexican) monster than mexican warrios? and what better mexican warriors than the "luchadores"? I know many people didn't like this episode, but i think they just didin't get it. P.S. i'm not mexican, and to be honest and don't like their culture very much, but i enjoyed this episode.moreless
  • Middling ground


    The Good;

    Love the return of the brothers and love the idea of El Diablo Robotico, we MUST see that in the Angel comics some time. Love Angel's cadiallac and the ref to Holland Manners.

    The Bad;

    Angel seems very rough with No5 at his apartment, he could have killed him! Don't you think Angel's rather full of himself about being the hero.

    Best line;

    Angel; "Wes, did you ever hear about the devil building a robot?"

    Wes; "Ah, el diablo robotico!"

    Angel; "No one ever tells me anything"

    Jeez, how did they get away with that?

    Hearts cut from bodies

    Apocalypses: 5

    Angel Cliches

    In disguise; 8

    DB/JM get's his shirt off; 17,

    Cheap Angel; 7

    Subverting the cliche; Angel's heart no good because it's 'dried up beef jerky'. No5 thinks Angel wants to drag him into the quest but actually just wants to give him some mail. After Angel's stirring speech No5 just jumps on the bus

    Fang Gang in bondage:

    Cordy: 5

    Angel: 14

    Wes: 7

    Gunn; 5

    Lorne; 5

    Fred; 3

    Fang gang knocked out:

    Cordy: 15

    Angel: 19

    Wes: 7

    Doyle; 1

    Gunn; 2

    Lorne; 7

    Groo; 1

    Connor; 1

    Faith; 1

    Fred; 3

    Kills; Angel kills the demon with a little help from his friends (or should that be amigos?)

    Cordy: 5 vamps, 3 demons

    Angel; 45 vamps, 61 and 1/2 demons, 5 zombies, 12 humans, one werewolf

    Doyle; 1 vamp

    Wes; 14 demons+5 vamps, 5 zombies, 2 humans

    Kate; 3 vamps

    Faith; 18 vamps, 6 demons, 3 humans.

    Gunn; 11 vamps+ 13 demons, 5 zombies, 1 human.

    Groo; 1 demon

    Fred; 3 vamps+ 2 demon, 5 zombies

    Connor; 16 vamps, 5 zombies, 2 demons, Jasmine

    Fang Gang go evil:

    Cordy: 3

    Angel: 3

    Gunn; 1

    Wes; 1

    Alternate Fang Gang;

    Cordy: 4

    Angel: 11

    Fred; 2

    Wes; 1

    Gunn; 1

    Connor; 1

    Lorne; 1

    Characters killed: 4+No5 victims, the security guards have to be the redshirts of the Buffyverse


    Recurring characters killed; No5


    Total number of Angel Investigations; 5, Spike however is now coming along for the ride on investigations.

    Angel, Gunn, Fred, Lorne, Wes,

    Angel Investigations shot:

    Angel: 14

    Wes; 2

    Packing heat; Wes with his shotgun (nice gag about the weapons check)

    Wes; 10

    Doyle; 1

    Angel; 4

    Gunn; 3

    Fred; 2

    Notches on Fang Gang bedpost:

    Cordy: 5 ?+Wilson/Hacksaw Beast+Phantom Dennis+Groo+Connor plus possibly the Beast

    Angel: 6; Buffy, Darla, The Transcending Furies, Eve

    Wes; 3 definite; Virginia, the bleached blonde and Lilah, 1 possible, Justine

    Gunn; 2 Fred and Gwen.

    Fred; 1 Gunn

    Groo; 1Cordy

    Kinky dinky:

    Spike remarks he can't 'diddle his willy'. He again refers to Harmony as 'his old tumble' and is jealous that she's now Angel's pet.

    Captain Subtext;

    Angel remarks of 'the father will kill the son' to Wes who hasn't a clue what he's talking about. How much do the rest of the gang remember? Spike refers to Angel as a drama queen. Now of course Liam is the Irish version of William so maybe 'diddle his willy' has another meaning?

    Know the face, different character; 5

    Parking garages;


    Buffy characters on Angel; 16.

    Wetherby, Collins and Smith. Angel, Cordy, Oz, Spike, Buffy, Wes, Faith, Darla, Dru, The Master, Anne, Willow and Harmony. POSSIBLY The First Evil

    Questions and observations;

    Great ref where the man who recruits number 5 is Holland Manners from season 2. Can anyone tell me whom the aging starlet Lorne is referring to? Wonder Woman referenced, this is at a time when Joss was planning the movie which sadly didn't come off (love to have seen ED or CC in the role). Very clear that Gunn is the most comfortable at WR&H. Angel's photographic memory again. Angel appears to limp some of the time, because of the beatings he's recieved or because DB's knee is giving him trouble? Note Spike knows how to defeat the demon through his poetic soul. Angel enters No5's home without an invite but does No5 dragging him inside count as one? So what happens the medallion after the fall of WR&H? Love to see it and the creature turn up some time in Fray.

    Marks out of 10; 6/10, ok but not brilliant

  • Different and so touching

    I do not understand so much criticism about his episode. What attracts me to this series is the huge variety of the storylines---suspenseful, touching, hilarious, historical, incredible cast and guest stars...

    The interaction between Angel and "Number Five" is endearing, and yet there is plenty of action, which so many viewers seem to prefer.

    Angel's subtle expressions--particularly his "reaction" expressions, is what makes an episode like this such fun while the story also has such a sweet tone.moreless
  • The Cautionary Tale of Numero Cinco

    The Cautionary Tale of Numero Cinco was a perfect and classically campy episode of Angel. This episode brought the story of a mask wearing mail clerk at Wolfram and Hart to light. I really enjoyed this episode because it was fun and filled with action, drama, and full of character. The story was unique and a side step from the main plot lines of the season though it is definitely a memorable episode. I remember seeing this mail man in the background a few times in previous episodes and think its great the way they portrayed his story and brought it to the foreground. I look forward to the next episode!!!!!!!moreless
  • The Cautionary Tale of What The Hell Happened!!?

    The Cautionary Tale of Numero Cinco-Angel discovers the only remaining member of five ancient evil fighters working in Wolfram & Hart, while researching an Aztec warrior named Tezcatcatl. We are shown this man's life through a series of flashbacks which tell the tale of 'The Luchadors', a family of Mexican wrestlers which helped the helpless until one day they were slain by Tezcatcatl. In the present day, Angel tries to help the last member discover the hero inside which he lost when his family were killed.

    So I'm thinking the writers were a little over confident in their abilites and thought the week of writing this episode and said, "Hey why don't we make the Mexican equivalent for it....The Power Rangers!" Hey, we'll even throw in a demon that looks like one of those fake monsters on the TV, that'd be cool right? WRONG! "Numero Cinco" is without a doubt the worst episode of Angel since the sci-fi hack job that was "She" in Season 1. Why, you ask? Because it has everything that was wrong with "She". A plot thinner than ice, horrible guest stars, and storyline that doesn't be long ANYWHERE near Angel. I couldn't stand this episode upon first viewing and literally 4 years later, it still didn't hold my interest. Maybe it's the corny backstory? Maybe it's the horrible make-up of the Aztec demon? Maybe it's Numero Cinco's awful story-telling? Maybe it's the cheesy fight scenes where the Luchadors do some very lame Power Ranger-esqe moves? Maybe it's just really, really, really, REALLY easy to lose interest while watching this episode? BINGO! Without the usual classic remarks from Spike, this episode would have been "Bottom of the Barrel" worthy material! Here's my cautionary tale...avoid this episode like a bad rash!moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

  • QUOTES (14)

    • Wesley: Angel, the church we're looking for is about a half mile...
      (Angel does a screeching U-turn)
      Spike: Always was a bit of a drama queen.

    • Spike: (about the Shanshu prophecy) It's a bedtime story to get vampires to play nice.

    • Spike: Hey Fred, did ya hear? Angel attacked the old mail guy!
      Angel: What?
      Fred: Not number five! You didn't hurt him?
      Angel: No! He attacked me!

    • Lorne: Fred, you're sorta like a woman.
      Fred: That's not a compliment.

    • Angel: We are trying to kill it, not pin it... okay, pinning works.

    • Spike: Can't smoke, drink, diddle my willy. Doesn't leave much to do other than watching you blokes stumble around playing Agatha Christie.

    • Five: What can I say about a demon who killed the people that mattered most to me?
      Angel: You can start by saying how you killed it back.

    • Five: You were going to drag me into your quest to find the Aztec warrior.
      Angel: No I wasn't! I was going to give you some mail!
      Five: Oh--sorry.

    • Angel: Hey, Wes, did you know that the devil built a robot?
      Wesley: El Diablo Robotico. Why?
      Angel: Nobody ever tells me anything.

    • Angel: I really hate this place!

    • Angel: The reason why I know this Aztec demon is not eating the hearts of heroes is... He didn't take mine. Am I honestly supposed to believe that it had no problem sticking a sword in my stomach but then decided, "Oh wait, his heart's not heroic enough?" Ha! I don't think so.
      Wesley: I understand you're feeling rejected. But this Aztec warrior... it wants the hearts for sustenance. It wants it for the meat, not the metaphor.
      Angel: What are you saying?
      Gunn: As meat goes, your heart's a dried-up hunk of gnarly-ass beef jerky.
      Angel: Yeah, but, stick a piece of wood in it, and I still die.

    • Lorne: Once the word spreads you beat up an innocent old man, well, the truly terrible will think twice before going toe-to-toe with our Avenging Angel.
      Spike: Yes. The geriatric community will be soiling their nappies when they hear you're on the case. Bravo.

    • Angel: I'm just... I don't know, just feeling a bit...
      Spike: Squishy?
      Angel: Disconnected.
      Spike: Are you serious? Here you are, finally living a piece of the high life--new clothes, new cars, my old tumble fetching you tasty snacks--and what's your gripe? "I feel disconnected." You want to feel disconnected, try being a bloody ghost for a bit. Try bobbin' around with no touch or taste or smell. Not many fates worse than that, I'd wager. (Number 5 walks past with mail cart) Okay, maybe that.

    • Wesley: Remind me again how you ended up in the front seat?
      Spike: I called shotgun.
      Wesley: Oh. I thought we were doing a weapons check.

  • NOTES (3)

    • The main musical theme of this episode is "Guero Canelo" by Calexico.

    • Although Lucha Libre (Free Wrestling) is an actual Mexican sport, the specific reference here is to El Santo, a real masked wrestler who starred as himself in films in which he took on cases ranging from simple kidnappings to re-animated mummies. In a weird way, Angel continues the local tradition.

    • This episode was originally going to be called 'Night of the Luchadors,' "Luchadors" translated to English means "fighters." Numero Cinco is Spanish for 'Number Five,' which is what everyone seems to call him.


    • Lorne: (to Fred) Oh, you're all woman. You're everywoman. You're Wonder Woman!
      Wonder Woman is a female super hero from the DC comic books who is often associated with empowered women. Joss Whedon was actually hired to write a script for a Wonder Woman movie but left the project when he and the studio disagreed about the direction the film should take.