The point about Charisma Carpenter is HUGE.
Rumor has it that for Season 4 Angel, Charisma was supposed to wind up being ’The Big Bad’, but she wound up getting pregnant (in real-life), which necessitated the ’Jasmine’ workaround.
This somewhat hosed the momentum on what had been a pretty awesome season of Angel to that point. Gina Torres did a solid job in her fill-in role as Jasmine, but it would’ve been so much more gut-wrenching and personal to have the gang have to deal with one of their own becoming an all-powerful despot.
My guess is that Whedon and the other real-life ’Powers (...)