No announcement yet.

Cordelia - The Heart

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Cordelia - The Heart

    I think Cordelia Chase was the heart of AtS, especially in the first two seasons. If she had not come to LA and met Angel, the show would have had to create another very similar character. Angel and Doyle had secrets, she was open and honest and always spoke her truth. She formed the business, she supported them, and later Wesley and Gunn and they would have been lost without her. The only other woman on the show, Kate, was badly written, her personality changed from episode to episode, and she didn't seem to have an actual arc.

    What do you think Cordy's role was on the show and what sort of show would it have been without her?

  • #2
    I have just started to watch AtS season 1 and I am surprised how much Charisma Carpenter or Cordelia is carrying the show. I don`t think without her the series would have made it into a season 2. She really is one half of the show with Angel being the other half of course but as this is Angel and not Angel & Cordelia I am really surprised at how much impact her character has.

    I can also see a strong connection between Angel and Cordelia. I know she kisses Doyle and Wesley and there will be others to come, but there is something between them from the start and she seems outright jealous when Buffy comes to town.

    ................................ Banner by buffylover


    • #3
      Huh, I seem to have missed this when it was originally posted. I agree the connection between Angel and Cordelia is a big part of the series, but it goes awry for me towards the end of S3, it changes in tone and I don't want to say anything really spoilery if you are only just watching the show flow. I really like the way she acts as the glue to the group in the first couple of seasons and the dynamics between them all is one of the best things of the earliest seasons. But it is actually the dynamic between her and Angel and how it shifts in S3 that I found had disappointing notes to it and a great deal of that comes from the changes to her character specifically. I'm currently rewatching S2 and have been noticing her development a lot more though, so I don't know if it will affect my pov on her/her path S3 onwards or not.

      Without Cordy they would have needed another female playing a similar role I think. Someone to be part of the group. I really like Kate's character and how they use her against/alongside Angel's path in the first two seasons for the integration with humans and the human/demon divides. But it is an external group role and I think the tone of the show would have been very altered if the group was only men. Fred comes to join them of course, but I wasn't ever very keen on her use within the group. It focused on ships so much. But her role as an analytical/academic character was a very different tone to what Cordy brought and I think that wouldn't have bridged the loss of Cordy's character if she hadn't have been there. Fred's strengths are far more typical to a strong woman functioning in a man's world perhaps, whereas Cordy changed the tone.


      • #4
        Totally agree, Cordy carries the show for the first two or three seasons. She brings a lightness and comedic talent that the show only gains from. It would suffer if there were only the two leads, Angel a brooding vampire and Doyle the happy go lucky demon. Cordy brings the humanity and the feminine. That's why I always thought Kate was a wasted character, she was unnecessary because Cordy got all the better lines, had an in-built closeness to Angel already and if they'd wanted to take it in a romantic direction from the start, it wouldn't have been such a leap.

        As not such a massive Angel fan, I watched the show from Cordy's pov and really, she's absolutely brilliant. She has more growth than any other character and suffers far more than anyone else, something which is often overlooked. She's incredibly warm and funny and is a great foil for the dark and brooding Angel. That's why season 4 is so awful, because her character deserved so much better.


        • #5
          I think Cordelia carries the show for the first season. Many of the stand-alone episodes are quite bad, so Charisma's charisma is really what kept me watching for a while.

          In S2, we get a lot more solid Angel-stories and Cordelia's role is diminished to "commentator," which is a role she excels at, but she does not get her own story lines the way Wes and Angel and even Gunn do, not counting Pylea.

          In S3 and 4, Codelia gets a lot more to do, but her stories are very weird. Some of it I quite like, such as her relationship with Groo, but it is so strange and off-beat compared to "classic" Cordelia. Most of it really sucks, such as her entire S4 arc and most of the stuff in S3 that build up to that. A lot of the stuff in S3 that was kinda good but a little weird is retrospectively ruined by S4.


          • #6

            10 Times Cordelia Was The Most Important Character On Buffy The Vampire Slayer And Angel
            by LIZ HERSEY – on May 07, 2019

            The mean girl has been a classic Hollywood archetype for years. Chris Hargensen in Carrie. Blair Waldorf in Gossip Girl. Cheryl Blossom in Riverdale. We all know this girl. She's rich, beautiful, and out for emotional blood. On Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Cordelia Chase was that girl. She puts the hell in Hellmouth. At the beginning of the series, it seemed like Cordelia's sole purpose was to terrorize the Scooby Gang, save for the times she needed to be rescued. Yet, over the course of the series, Cordelia evolves into a well-rounded, fully developed character.

            Her edges never dull; her tongue is so sharp it has the ability to cut and slash as soon as she opens her mouth. But Cordelia also grows to care deeply about others, a trait that grows ten-fold when she moves over to Angel. Throughout her dramatic journey, Cordelia proves that she's one mean girl who should never be underestimated.


            Cordelia's had it out for Buffy since she declined to be a Cordette. It's not the first time Buffy's been hit with some harsh words from Cordelia, but it's the first time Cordy's been right. In Season 2, Buffy is still understandably traumatized from having been (briefly) killed by the Master. But taking it out on her friends? Not cool. While Cordelia may outwardly loathe the Scooby Gang, she recognizes that they're great friends who are lucky to have each other.

            This is hardly the most pivotal moment of the show, but it's significant because not many people have the guts to stand up to Buffy, the strong and confident Slayer. Though Buffy will go on to have many confrontations with the gang throughout the series, her friends have to work up the guts to call her out. Not Cordelia. In her world, she's the Slayer.


            Big whoop, right? Buffy stakes them all the time. Well, Buffy's the Slayer. It's kind of her job. In contrast, Cordelia has precious little incentive for putting her life on the line, but she does it anyway. Even when she was a member of the Scooby Gang, Cordelia was dismissed as dead weight. She certainly wasn't the strongest asset to the group, but she logged a considerable number of hours in the library or driving people around on various missions.

            Throughout her Scooby tenure, Cordy never crossed killing a vampire off her list. Sure, she assisted many times, usually as bait, but that was about it. So when she stakes her first vamp on Graduation Day, it really marks her character arc. She has no Slayer strength nor a group of close-knit friends supporting her. Cordelia just kicks undead butt because it's the right thing to do.


            Many see the Angel Investigations team as heroes for putting their lives on the line in order to help the helpless. That wasn't Cordelia's motivation for founding the agency. She was just a starving actress who needed a job. It may seem crass to monetize life-saving, but think about it—heroes have to eat, too.

            Even if the whole endeavor started out as a way for Cordy to earn a couple bucks, it legitimately helped save a ton of lives. It was also a perpetual thorn in the side of Wolfram & Hart, the evil law firm. Sometimes to help the helpless, you have to help yourself first.

            Buffy the Vampire Slayer is nothing if not a celebration of the outcast. It fully encapsulates what it feels like to be on the fringes. It gives the marginalized not just someone to root for, but an entire group of people. The nerds rule/cool kids drool theme is prevalent throughout most of Season 1...until the show flips that whole notion on its head.

            "Out of Mind, Out of Sight" is Buffy's first Cordelia-centric episode. She finds herself in danger when a disgruntled classmate, now invisible, wants to kill her. As the Slayer, Buffy hangs around Cordelia for protection, leading the two enemies to have a heart-to-heart. Cordy confesses that just because she's popular doesn't mean she's not lonely. In fact, sometimes she feels the loneliest around her so-called friends. This is the first time Cordelia shows real depth. The interaction doesn't just humanize her to Buffy; it humanizes her to the viewer as well.

            Buffy the Vampire Slayer is seen as one of the most prominent feminist TV shows of all time, and with good reason. From the Slayer to her friends and even the villains, the females of this show are strong, independent, and powerful. However, as badass as these women may be, many of them have terrible taste in men. For example, every relationship Buffy has could be called problematic.

            Of the show's most significant relationships, very few women end things. Often they're waiting to be left. Still, Cordelia is always one to buck the trend and create a new one. When she catches Xander making out with Willow, that's it. Game over. No going back. Of course, before Cordelia has a chance to dump him, she gets impaled. This injury could have taken her life, but instead gives her some fresh perspective: Xander was a terrible boyfriend. The cheating wasn't cool, but that's the least of it. He regularly belittled Cordy and took her for granted. When Cordy dumps you, you stay dumped. Buffy, you should be taking notes.

            Most of the Scoobies would be lost without a demon to fight. Cordelia is the opposite. At least, she starts off that way. Even when fighting alongside Buffy, Angel, and the others, one gets the sense that Cordelia would be happy if all the demons just fell off the face of the earth. On Angel, Skip, a demon cast out of the Powers That Be, offers Cordelia the chance to escape her debilitating visions and live the life she always wanted. He rewrites history so that instead of working for Angel, Cordy becomes the famous actress she once aspired to be.

            This is all well and fabulous until she discovers that Angel was given the visions instead, which tormented him. Old Cordelia would likely have shrugged this off and continued to live her lavish new life. New Cordelia shows that she really has changed and gets Skip to reverse his magic. As the titular character, people think of Angel as the show's hero but he would be lost without Cordelia.

            This isn't some tantalizing spell dangled in front of Cordelia by some mystical creature; she makes this decision entirely on her own. A Queen Bee can only rule if she has followers, so by Cordy giving hers the kiss-off, she's abdicating the high school throne. Xander is hardly worthy of such a grand gesture, but he's not really the point here.

            The point is that the Cordettes are the worst and that nobody should dictate who their friends date. Hellmouth help the person who tries to tell Cordelia Chase what to do. True to ice queen form, when Cordy breaks up with her friends, she takes snarkiness to a higher plane.

            When a person is willing to die for the good of the world, they truly become a hero. When Jasmine possesses Cordelia, the world is truly in danger. Using Cordelia as a host, Jasmine was able to manipulate Angel and the others into removing Angel's soul. The only way to force Jasmine out of Cordelia is to reduce Cordy to a vegetative state.

            The spell is performed and she's rendered comatose. A vision temporarily allows Cordelia to wake from her coma. Her time back on Earth is memorable, heartbreaking, and all too short. She dies in order to become a higher power. You're welcome.

            There's a thin line between brutal honesty and downright meanness, and Cordelia flirts with it constantly. However, sometimes people need an ice-cold splash of reality, and that's especially true for those in the saving-the-world business. A lot of the time, Cordy's lack of a filter is used primarily for comedic effect. A perfect example is in "Earshot", when Buffy hears people's thoughts and every one of Cordy's is spoken aloud moments later.

            Sometimes, Cordelia's straight-forwardness makes her the voice of the audience; when she laments that human sacrifices are almost always female virgins, for instance. Bottom line, when it comes to fighting bad guys, there's no time to beat around the bush. Cordelia thinks it, she says it. It's her way.


            What is this, Bizarro World? When Doyle dies, he passes his gift of visions off to Cordelia. Isn't she one of the most selfish people on the planet, though? This makes no sense. Or does it? Before he died, Doyle was in love with Cordelia, and saw the big heart she so often hides from the rest of the world. When she receives the visions, Cordelia becomes the ultimate empathizer because she can actually feel the pain of what others are going through.

            In retrospect, Doyle could have used a little more foresight. He was a half-demon, whereas Cordelia is mortal and doesn't have the magical strength to handle the visions. But throughout the excruciating pain, Cordelia is more determined than ever to help protect and rescue others. She is a true champion.