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Angel 5x16 Shells - Wildfeed Summary

By Pandora

Thursday 4 March 2004, by Webmaster

Mourning Fred’s death, Angel and his friends vow to find a way to bring her back, which leads to a confrontation with the ancient god Illyria, who now occupies Fred’s body.

As Illyria (the ancient god now occupying Fred’s body) turns to leave Fred’s apartment, Wesley swings a battle-axe at it. The axe just bounces off, so Wes plays on the god’s obvious hatred of humans, saying humans now control the world. Illyria says that means there’s a lot of work to do, and she leaves. Meanwhile Angel and Spike fly back to the U.S., mourning their failure to save Fred’s life. While Spike drowns his sorrows, Angel decides that even if the rules say Fred can’t be brought back, he’ll break the rules. Back at Wolfram and Hart, Gunn and Harmony prepare to torture Knox, but then Wesley enters and tells them Fred is dead. Knox is thrilled to hear that his idol Illyria has been restored, and assures them that he chose Fred as its host because he loved Fred so much. Wesley aims a gun at Knox, but then Angel enters and declares his intent to get Fred back. A bit later Angel asks his friends to help, but Lorne excuses himself, still feeling guilty at his failure to read the evil in Knox’s aura. Angel insists Illyria’s return was pre-ordained, but Gunn reveals the sarcophagus was stuck in customs until someone (he doesn’t say who) got it out. Wes and Gunn are skeptical that they can bring Fred back, but Spike and Angel say there must be a way, and Angel suggests contacting Willow for help. Meanwhile, as Harmony guards Knox, contemplating torture, Illyria smashes in through the wall, slaps Harmony away, and drags Knox off to the laboratory.

In the lab Knox wheels out Illyria’s sarcophagus and introduces himself as the god’s priest and servant. Meanwhile Angel learns Willow is away on another astral plane, and Harmony admits that Illyria and Knox got away from her. At the lab Illyria chants an incantation, and slams a hand down on the gem on the sarcophagus’ cover. An inky red flows up over her hand and sheaths her body in a red and black body suit. Then Angel, Wes, Gunn, and Spike barge in. Angel demands that Illyria returns Fred’s body, but Illyria declines and tosses Angel through a window. Wes and the others attack, but Illyria raises a hand, altering the flow of time, and they’re stuck in slow motion while she grabs Knox and flees. A few minutes later Angel returns to the lab, where the others, now freed from their near-frozen moment, have no idea where Illyria has gone. After they figure out how Illyria got away, Gunn goes off to do some research while Angel and Spike return to Angel’s office. Wes and Harmony stay in the lab, where Wes tries to pry open the sarcophagus with a crowbar. His anger erupts and he beats the container furiously. It doesn’t open, but Wes calms down and rotates the big gem, which pops off in his hand. Meanwhile Harmony finds Knox’s cell phone, which shows three calls in the last few hours from the same person. Gunn visits Dr. Sparrow, and demands to know all that Sparrow knows about the importation of Illyria’s sarcophagus. As they discuss Gunn’s role in that process, Wes enters, and after overhearing enough to learn what Gunn did, Wes levels a gun at him.

Gunn admits he signed the customs document for Dr. Sparrow, and that he regrets it now. Wes says he can forgive the initial action, but not Gunn’s silence while Fred was dying. Then he grabs a long surgical blade and stabs Gunn in the gut. A bit later, however, Angel scolds Wes for his loss of control, and admits that he chose to let Fred die when he learned that saving her would kill thousands of others. Then, as Angel asks Wes to bury his anger and help them stop Illyria, Spike returns from torturing Dr. Sparrow, with a name that might help them. Wesley goes through his ancient texts and figures out Illyria’s old temple was at the current site of Wolfram and Hart, and that her army was entombed there, waiting for her return. Angel says he’s never seen the tomb, but Wes says it’s in another time frame, and only Illyria can open the gateway. Meanwhile Illyria and Knox go to the Wolfram and Hart lobby, where Illyria produces an eerie wall of sound, and the building shakes, but nothing else happens. Knox says the Wolfram and Hart senior partners probably put a mystical lock on the temple, and produces a “skeleton key” (a set of bones), which might help. A few minutes later, while Harmony brings Gunn - in a hospital bed now - some papers to sign, there’s a loud unlocking sound, and in the lobby, Knox’s bones fade away. Just then, however, Angel and Spike arrive. Illyria is surprised to see how far they’d go to save one of their own. She asks if they’d even fight for Knox’s life, and Angel says he would if it were a choice between Knox and her. Then Wes pulls out a gun and shoots Knox.

Even though Knox was Illyria’s priest, she doesn’t seem upset at his death. Angel agrees that Knox wasn’t the real problem, and then he and his friends attack. Illyria dodges blades and bolts, knocking off each attacker as he comes. Finally Angel and Spike strike at her together, but she catches both their blades and spins them off. Then she slows time again, and while the others are mired in slow motion, she opens the door to her temple. Just as she’s about to enter, however, Angel appears next to her, holding the jewel from her sarcophagus, which defeats her time warp. Again, however, Illyria shakes him off and enters the temple, and Wes dives in after her just as the door slams shut. Inside the temple, Illyria is prepared for a triumphant return to her army... but finds they have turned to dust in the millennia she’s been gone. She sinks to her knees in grief and Wes prepares to shoot her, but then the door opens again and Illyria disappears. Later Angel orders the temple door permanently sealed, and Wes heads back to the lab. Spike tells Angel that he’s decided not to leave Wolfram and Hart, saying he wants to stick around for the big fight that’s brewing. Finally, a bit later, as Wes packs up things in Fred’s old office, Illyria appears. Curious about Wes’ feelings of loss, she tells him that fragments of Fred - including some memories - do remain in her body. Wes orders Illyria to leave, but the god says she has nowhere to go, and must now learn to live in this world. She asks for Wes’ help, and because she still looks like Fred, he agrees, on the condition that she not kill anymore. Finally, as each of Angel’s friends mourn Fred in their own way, Wes finishes packing up Fred’s things and finds the doll she loved as a child, which we last saw her packing when she left her parents’ house for the big city eight years earlier.