Dark Angel 1×08 – Blah Blah Woof Woof

Blah Blah Woof Woof.jpg

A Dark Angel classic, Blah Blah Woof is a very memorable outing and a crucial hour of the show.

What starts out as a routine Jam Pony run for Max, soon sends her ducking for cover as Lydecker sends the Seattle PD on a city-wide manhunt for the X5. There’s a real sense of urgency in this one and the hour does a tremendous job of showcasing the scope of the city and the enormity of Max’s predicament.

Lydecker is fascinating here. At one point in the episode, he learns of Max evading his grasp, and you can see a slight smile on his face – clearly proud of how far his training has brought her. It’s beautifully contrasted with his disappointment in Zack for turning himself in and sacrificing himself for nothing (Max). All these touches go a long way into making Lydecker a fully-formed and complicated antagonist with a number of dimensions. And John Savage plays the psychotic paternal role to perfection.

One of my favorite scenes in the entire series is the car goodbye between Max and Logan. The heartbreak, the what-ifs (as she asks him to go on the run with her), it’s all gorgeously realized. Everything reaches a climax in that utterly iconic moment where Max walks out of the car and then in a heated moment, returns and shares her first (and extremely passionate) kiss with Logan. It’s all so tragically beautiful as they look into each other’s eyes for what they assume is probably the final time, and she gut-wrenchingly walks away.

In other news, Zack makes another appearance and he’s still a pest (particularly with Logan). How unsettling are his advances towards Max? As Logan point out, Zack’s feelings are definitely more than sibling-love which is immensely disturbing (particularly the way he creepily pushes Max hair out of her face by the fireplace). Ultimately, Zack turns himself in to save his sister, and then naturally crashes the helicopter because he’d rather die than return to Manticore. It’s all remarkably absorbing.

Post-Pulse Bits

– Logan and Max playing chess in the teaser always amuses me. She beats him 5 times in a row (if we needed any more proof of her intellectual prowess)

– “And the lips… fuller.” – Lydecker describing Max to the sketch artist cracks me up every time. And it’s a great bit of direct continuity from Prodigy since he now knows what she looks like. But seriously the sketch doesn’t really look like her does it?

– Dr. Sam Carr is another recurring guest-star who I really like.

– Max is such a cat, hiding in little spots in South Market as the troops launch a large-scale manhunt.

– The sector police searching cars is something I unfortunately experience all too often in Lebanon.

– “Showtime” – l love Max running through a rain of bullets, swinging over the cops and landing on the hood of Logan’s car.

– Max and Logan both staring out into the rain in the storm made me roll my eyes. That’s a bit much.

– Normal tries to turn Max in but is thankfully intercepted by Matt Sung. It’s not as funny as the writers think it is (with his interrogation) but it further conveys how desperate people are for a payday in this post-pulse world. Sketchy taking over Normal’s job at Jam Pony is much more amusing.

– I always get goosebumps when Max has an epiphany, calls Bling and realizes they’re in a hospital. Her ensuing fight with Zack is a great scene and the first time we ever witness two X5s going up against one another. It’s over too soon, but a promising sign of things to come.

– Another brilliant addition to the mythology: X5s are universal donors which allows them to help each other in the battlefield.

– I’ve never really understood the shared dream Max and Logan have in the the ballroom as she transfuses him and we hear the song (Sibellius) from the car which they later hum. Is it some other state of consciousness? Whatever it is, it’s quite beautiful as Logan gets off the wheelchair and dances with a gorgeous Alba.

– Very funny touch with Max in the prison surrounded by a bunch of lookalikes who have been turned in by their family members.

– The moment where Max spots Zack in chains then swiftly jumps off the roof reminds me of Batman for some reason.

– I love how Max and Logan still resume their banter at the end when he’s all healed. Their exchange is just priceless.

– Seriously how epic is this episode’s name?

– The episode’s ending is pretty corny with Max’s first flop of a voiceover as she cheesily states that Zack will “always” know where to find her. Cringe.

Barbs & Barcodes

Logan: Isn’t it against the superhero code to use your powers to take advantage of we mere mortals?
Max: Yeah, and I’m not done taking advantage, either. There’s a stunt contest at Crash tonight. Thinking about pulling a Linda Blair – riding my bike up on the ceiling or something. Wanna come?
Logan: No, thanks.
Max: Oh, I forgot. No fun for Logan Cale. World coming to an end. Fight the power. Protect the downtrodden. Blah blah, woof woof. See ya.

Perv: Can’t help it Max. You’re so the bomb.
Max: (knees him) Kaboom.

Sketchy: I’m not saying she killed anybody. Just that I see a resemblance.
Cindy: No, no. What you think you’re seeing is the fifty large reward in your pocket. But you better get your eyes right, and double-quick, too. Otherwise, what you’re gonna be seein’ is Original Cindy puttin’ the smackdown!

Normal: Where the firetruck is Max?

Cop: Hey you. Come here.
Max: What is it, officer? (He shows her the poster.) Oh, no, not her again man, she’s been dissing me all day. I got stopped twice already. (He takes out his radio) Come on, she doesn’t even look like me. Look at how thin she is. Can you say “eating disorder”?

Sandoval: We have a confirmed sighting on South Market.
Lydecker: How confirmed?
Sandoval: She took out a policeman without breaking a sweat.
Lydecker: Box her in, and box her in fast.

Logan: Good luck.
Zack: There’s no such thing. Success depends on having a well-thought-out plan that’s executed with precision.
Logan: Right.

Logan: All set?
Zack: Would I have come back here if everything wasn’t all set?
Logan: It’s a figure of speech.

Zack: Thanks for helping out.
Logan: I’d wish you good luck, but…
Logan: He’s a fun guy.
Max: You should see him get his drink on at the X5 reunions.
Logan: You’re going to be okay, you know.
Max: Oh, yeah. I’ll be better than okay. It’s the way I’m made. It’s you I’m worried about.

Max: (to Zack) Out of my way, or I go through you. What’s it gonna be?

Max: Lucky for you, I’m a universal donor. People at Manticore figured it’d be handy if their genetically-enhanced killing machines could swap blood in a pinch. (She begins transfusing Logan) If you die on me, I’ll kick your ass.

Sketchy: Look, I did the best I could, but these people are a bunch of slackers, bums, and weirdos.
Normal: Right. Tell me about it.
Sketchy: I don’t know how you put up with it, man.
Normal: Right. Neither do I. Back to the pit with the rest of the cretins.

Logan: Hospital food – one thing even the Pulse couldn’t manage to make worse.

Max: You know, about what happened…
Logan: After the car.
Max: I was real emotional with all that was going on.
Logan: I know.
Max: It’s not-
Logan: Me, neither.
Max: I mean-
Logan: Exactly.
Max: So long as that’s clear.
Logan: I’m glad we talked about it.
Max: Me too. See ya.
Logan: Later.

Normal: Well, well, well. Look who decided to come in today.
Max: Don’t bust my chops, Normal, or I might snap and kill again.

Conclusion
Packed with suspense and real heart, Blah Blah Woof Woof is a masterful hour of Dark Angel.

Nad Rating
A

9 comments

  1. I liked this one. I thought it was going to be a funny episode based on the silly title, so that was a good misdirect.

    Zack coming on to his sort of sister totally creeped me out. I wondered if it was less of an attraction thing and more a competition with Logan. Zack is just exhausting the way he talks to Logan.

    A lot of this episode was really well done. I like Max realizing what was happening to her and the jail cell full of pretty brunettes. The way she escaped from South Market or wherever she was stuck was cute.

    It was so convenient that Lydecker decides the Seattle police are tired of having him around and leaves. That made me roll my eyes a bit.

    I love how Logan's car is so crummy. The future must seriously suck if that's what the rich are driving.

    I'm still having my issues with the show, but I agree with you on one thing Nadim, the world they built is amazing. I love future-y shows where things aren't all chrome and flying cars (Firefly! <3). They really put thought into every aspect of the post pulse world and it works very well.

  2. The title is hilarious isn't it? So glad you enjoyed it sunbunny 🙂 Loved reading your various thoughts as I love to see new people discover this old favorite of mine!

  3. Ahhhh, loved the title so much! And when she said that line “If you die on me, I'll kick your ass” I KNEW you're gonna pick that quote for your review! Hahaha we literally think the same way, it's hilarious!

    What a fantastic hour though, seriously. Max and Zack's fight was INCREDIBLE. Never thought we were gonna see that and it was so satisfying the way she beat him. Not sure if he's really dead though (you can never know with TV shows anymore) but I wouldn't be too sad about it if he never returns.

    More Logan screentime = more epicness! Their chess game was sooo fun and that KISS! Man oh man… I am glad though that they didn't jump into a relationship so quickly. Their hilarious banter is what's making the paring intriguing and I'd hate to see them start something NOW. But seriously, they better be together at the end of the show. Wondering: is there an ENDING to the show or a cliffhanger? Just wanna know what's coming!

    “Blah Blah Woof Woof”… I love when she said that. And the look on Logan's face after. Okay, these two are perfect.

    I have to thank you for these awesome reviews. I've been enjoying them so much, and can't wait for more!

  4. Woohooooo you finally reached Blah Blah. Freakin' love the hour. Yes we do think the same way it's crazy hahaha!

    Plot-wise the show ends on a cliffhanger, but thematically, it's kind of fitting. Basically that's my way of convincing myself 🙂 So even though the show DEFINITELY should have gone on for many more years, the ending IS an ending of sorts. But yeah, 15 years later and I still get mad at Fox for prematurely cancelling the show. Still, it's a wonderful two-season ride 🙂 Won't tell u anymore! But don't expect a totally COMPLETE ending 🙁

    Also, so glad you're appreciating these in-depth reviews! Really wanted to cover EVERY detail in my rewatch!

  5. Love this episode so so much. From the heartwarming chess game at the beginning to that epic car kiss, this was such an amazing serialized hour. I can't help but think how ahead of its time this show was.

    Max running through a rain of bullets really reminded me of Wonder Woman's No Man's Land scene! And I really love that she never uses guns or weapons to fight back (ironically, like Wonder Woman too), just her physical strength. I don't know if I'm appreciating the fight scenes just a tad bit more now because of Body Combat or what 😛

    Gotta hate Zack though. Terribly miscast! I didn't love the Max/Zack outdoor fight scene as much as I did the first time because, well, Zack. Ugh.

    “Lydecker is fascinating here. At one point in the episode, he learns of Max evading his grasp, and you can see a slight smile on his face – clearly proud of how far his training has brought her. It's beautifully contrasted with his disappointment in Zack for turning himself in and sacrificing himself for nothing (Max).” LOVE THIS! So so true. And there's really a sense of urgency in this episode like you said. I was on the edge of my seat from the start and the way they brought EVERYONE together for this one huge storyline is genius. Even the Jam Pony stuff was related to Max's predicament.

    “Logan: He’s a fun guy.
    Max: You should see him get his drink on at the X5 reunions.” I died at this line!

    I still really love the nostalgic feeling to this show. Yes, there are terrible things happening to the main characters (Max being wanted for murder, Logan almost dying) but instead of feeling depressed or annoyed, you watch to look forward for the heroes to get out of these predicaments. Sometimes old-school storytelling can be just as effective (if not more).

    And of course, best title ever! Or second best after Fuhgeddaboudit.

  6. so much nostalgia reading your second wave of comments Chris! hahaha it's fun to see the differences between your original and then your rewatch!! I am dying to rewatch this after Wonder Woman now! So true! hahah great catch 🙂 keep it up!

  7. This was great! Very suspenseful & action-packed. One of my fave moments was when one of the guys said “whoa it is her” & Max said “Boo” love her! I liked Max & Zack’s fight outdoors, the scenery behind them was beautiful. Not a fan of the dream scene, but maybe that’s because I’m more of a Max/Alec fan. I laughed so hard at Sketchy covering for Normal! 😂

  8. Probably my fave episode! I’m disabled, so the Max/Logan ship is soooo important to me because it’s one of the very few times in any form of media that a disabled character wins the heart of a superhuman.

    1. One reason why the Max/Alec ship sometimes rubs me the wrong way is there’s kinda an implication there sometimes that they think Max deserves someone who’s her “equal”, which strikes me as a little unintentionally ableist.

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