Dark Angel

Dark Angel 1×13 – The Kidz Are Aiight

"Don’t get me wrong; nobody’s gladder than me that you’re on your feet. But reality check: I could still kick your ass."

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I hate Zack. I really really do.

I don’t know if it’s William Gregory Lee’s performance or the character’s aggravating stubbornness, but I wholly dislike his appearances on the show. So while this episode has all the ingredients for an amazing episode of Dark Angel, his involvement always sort of ruins it for me.

Thankfully, the introduction of yet another X5, Tinga, makes up for Zack’s unfortunate presence. Although we don’t see much of Max’s sister, it’s admittedly thrilling to see all three X5s decimating Lydecker’s troops side by side. Moreover, it further expands the world of the show as we catch glimpses and hear stories of the various X5s dispersed across the country. It just feels like everything’s bubbling under for a massive showdown in the future.

It’s interesting how Max has to continuously suffer the consequences for her decision to stay in Seattle. First Zack refuses to give her the contact number like he does with the rest (since she’s not a “good little soldier”), and when she does get a hold of it, he’s already changed it. The writers do a great job of elevating the stakes and isolating Max as a form of punishment for building bonds with her loved ones.

Max and Logan’s relationship takes an unfortunate detour this week. It starts off promisingly with the two getting ready for their date in a beautifully constructed sequence that has Cindy and Bling respectively questioning our two leads. Unfortunately the actual date itself is caught short by Zack’s predicament, and further still by the realization that Max’s transfusion is wearing off on Logan. The final scene of the episode where Logan tries to hide this development from Max is very uncomfortable to watch. When Logan almost falls, he coldly tells Max to take the food with her. It’s aggravating yet believable, considering everything we’ve grown to learn about Logan’s personality. Still, it’s a tough road for these two soulmates.

Post-Pulse Bits

– The teaser is quite unsettling with Zack being tortured and then almost saved by a Max look-alike.

– A rare post-pulse commodity: chicken – which Max acquires for Logan. It’s hilarious how he later forgets to turn the oven on while cooking it.

– It’s amazing how the scene with a barefoot Max and Logan by the waterfront can still manage to be so romantic with a hideous backdrop. Naturally, the hoverdrone interrupts their kiss and they awkwardly head their separate ways.

– I love that Cindy puts up a Xena poster when she moves in with Max (thanks to the Reds killing her superintendent).

– Max shaving her legs using the pot in the kitchen is another awesome little touch that really brings the world to life.

– Badass moment: Max flying off the transport vehicle on her bike.

– They reused shots of Max running in the woods from Heat. Really guys? Are we that poor? She’s not even wearing the catsuit in this episode.

– Manticore tidbit: the X5s were taught to make themselves forget if they were ever captured. Am I the only one who finds that skill beyond fascinating?

– Ugh, Zack’s creepy incestual vibes towards Max are back.

– Max jokes that she must have shark DNA since she doesn’t sleep (unlike Zack). Don’t joke Maxie, because knowing those Manticore folks, it could be true.

– Logan warning the X5s using an Eyes Only hack was brilliant and bold since he effectively makes himself another enemy (Lydecker).

– The doctor who was “shot” in Zack’s escape turns out be alive. What an elaborate ploy!

– Loved Max, Zack and Tinga hopping across buses during their escape.

– I don’t mention this enough but Dark Angel’s musical score is consistently awesome with a funky mix of vocals and beats.

– It’s worth noting that this is the first time we hear of Lydecker reporting to someone, as there’s mention of a mysterious committee and a woman in charge who has authorized Lydecker to use “deadly force” with the X5s or risk getting replaced. Interesting…

– Unlike Rising, Max’s final voiceover is quite appropriate and fitting (see below).

Barbs & Barcodes

Max: I left you a little present back at your place—a fresh chicken.
Logan: Oh, wow. I see a poulet chez Cale in your future, with a bottle of pre-Pulse Nuits St. George. Say, around…8:00?
Max: I was hoping you’d say that.

Cindy: Just one question. Those superfreaks still looking for you?
Max: After the way I kicked their butts?

Max (voiceover): Guess I shouldn’t be surprised; I mean, it’s like I said, Zack usually covers his tracks pretty good. I just didn’t think he’d cover them from me. Must be a guy thing, ’cause Logan can cover pretty good, too. Maybe it’s me. Maybe there’s something in the way I’m made that turns people away. All I know is it was easier before, when I just didn’t give a damn about anything.

Conclusion
While it’s not the strongest of episodes, The Kidz Are Aiight provides some welcome momentum and a couple of great character beats.

Nad Rating
B

9 comments

  1. Meh. The pacing was a bit off in this one (lots of set up for a rather short three X5s fighting sequence) and I also hate Zack. They didn't want to hire someone who could act for this important part? Please tell me he dies soon (no, don't! spoilers…)

    I did like the setup for Max and Logan's date and his whole Flowers for Algernon thing with his legs. I was a little annoyed that he was just up and walking around this episode–it seemed like lazy writing to me. So I'm relieved we're exploring the issue more.

  2. So true. My lord Zack is atrocious. Such a terrible actor. And that fight scene was indeed waaaaaaay too short for such buildup.

    And don't worry, no lazy writing there. Max and Logan's storyline is handled perfectly throughout the first season. 🙂

  3. I loved the way they tricked Zack into talking! Seriously, it was shocking and unexpected. I usually love shows that do misdirection like that, and this was done perfectly. Sure, Zack was annoying as ever but Laydecker's presence always brings the quality up in my opinion. I just love how sinister he is, and the way he keeps saying they're his “kids”.

    But the final 5 minutes were really depressing. Logan falling on his knees, hiding it from Max, the look on her face when he basically tells her to leave, then the phone call…really depressed the hell out of me.

    Again, the best thing about this show is really the production. The chicken was hilarious but like you mentioned, I loved Max's shaving her legs bit! The people behind this show are really committed. I usually like to nitpick about these things (like how some shows would use modern cellphones even though the timeline is supposed to be like mid-80s or whatever) but I can't find any mistake on Dark Angel yet!!

    This is also the first time I notice the show's musical score and man it was awesome! Loving it. Also: Cindy has a Xena poster hahahah! Because why not?

  4. You're reminding me about all these awesome bits. From the chicken to the saving to the Xena poster – SO MANY DETAILS.

    And Chris, I freakin' adore the music on this show. Not just the songs, but the score like you mentioned. Some of the pieces are so haunting and beautiful! My favorite in particular comes at the end of the season and I'm sure you'll love it too!

  5. Great episode! The Manticore scenes are always hard to watch & that’s why they’re so compelling. I don’t mind Zack, but I don’t love him either. I think his actor did well in this episode. The ending between Max & Logan was sad & I wish he wasn’t so cold to her. I always love when they shoot outdoors, the scenes are always beautiful. The production is amazing! Even for the shortest shots of a city, they show so much & how everything is built from scratch. It’s amazing!

  6. Chris, you can’t find any mistakes in DA. Really? If all the computer chips in America were fried by the Pulse, how come Logan is able to hack computers all over the place whenever he needs to? Did all the rich people and institutions get their computers going again after the Pulse? Thanks to Apple who supplied all them computers?

    How about the pagers and flip phones they use underneath hoverdrones? The phone technology never advanced beyond the year 2000 while other technologies progressed?

    Later on, in Terminal City, how did all these people get anything to eat if there were no stores and no farms and no deliveries from outside? They just ate rats?

    Now that I have written the above, I am not so confident that these are “mistakes.” Maybe they are acceptable. What you think?

    1. Haha Jeff I think you put more thought into this than the show’s writers ever did 😛 Great points all around! Looking forward to hearing more of your thoughts on other episodes!

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