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The Bachelor Party

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Season 1, Episode 7
Angel107 472
Air date November 16, 1999
Written by Tracey Stern
Directed by David Straiton
Episode Guide
"Sense & Sensitivity"
"I Will Remember You"
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
David Boreanaz Angel
Charisma Carpenter Cordelia
Glenn Quinn Doyle
Guest Starring
Kristin Dattilo Harrie
Carlos Jacott Richard
Co Starring
Ted Kairys Ben
Chris Tallman Nick
Brad Blaisdell Uncle John
Robert Hillis Pierce
Lauri Johnson Aunt Martha
Kristen Lowman Mother Rachel
David Polcyn Russ
Sarah Michelle Gellar Buffy
William Wayne Brother Straley
Tony Sagastizado Party Goer
Diana Terranova Stripper

"The Bachelor Party" is the seventh episode of the first season of Angel and the seventh episode overall. It was originally broadcast on November 16, 1999.

Doyle gets upset when his estranged wife, Harrie, comes to town asking for a divorce so she can marry another man. She also wants to get Doyle's blessing, and things proceed so affably that Doyle is invited to the bachelor party. But the groom has some nasty plans in store for Doyle.


Doyle's attempt to get Angel to put down his book and go out drinking (to a sports bar featuring online trivia) gets sidetracked by the appearance of Cordelia, in elegant evening wear, who apparently arranged to meet her date, Pierce, at Angel's office. Cordelia enumerates Pierce's many attractive qualities, all of which seem to be material in nature. When Pierce arrives a little later, Angel interrogates the handsome young man until Cordelia manages to drag him out the door. In some distress at the hopelessness of his own case with Cordelia, Doyle sits on the sofa and idly leafs through one of Angel's books. When a photo of a lovely blond woman slips from between the pages, Doyle picks it up and whistles, asking Angel if his old squeeze would date a man with an Irish accent. Seeing Angel's stricken face, Doyle immediately deduces that this is Buffy and gets up to apologize. Before he's able to say anything else, however, Doyle is struck by another vision, and the conversation is sidetracked again. At Doyle's report of a young guy captured by a band of vampires downtown, the two of them race to the rescue. Meanwhile at a posh, upscale restaurant, Cordelia, finding herself "bored silly" by Pierce and his futures trading exploits, entertains herself by imagining what her fellow team members might be up to. In fact, Angel and Doyle are in the midst of a bracing battle in the vampire nest, where they arrived just in time to save the weakened but still breathing victim. After they dust all visible vamps, Angel elects to take their charge home, and sends Doyle back to the office. As they leave, the single surviving nest-member, a large, (extra) mean-looking male vamp emerges from hiding.

Unaware that he's being hunted, Doyle lets himself in at the office, while the hunting vampire also observes Cordelia's arrival only moments later. Dropping Cordelia off early because she claims to feel unwell, Pierce makes a couple of last-ditch tries to spend the night with her. When the vamp suddenly shows his face, however, Pierce screams and runs in terror, leaps into his Mercedes convertible and burns rubber backing away. Thus abandoned to her fate, Cordelia struggles with her captor in a futile attempt to break out of his grasp. Suddenly, Doyle reappears on the front steps with a crossbow and an attitude. Taking his only shot, Doyle sends a bolt into the vamp's foot, then engages hand-to-hand as the enraged vampire throws Cordelia rolling to the sidewalk, yanks free and roars to attack. Outmatched, Doyle refuses to morph into demon mode (a reluctance Angel mentioned after the fight earlier), even though enhanced demon strength would be a distinct advantage at this moment of crisis. Even in human form, however, Doyle manages to retrieve the spent crossbow bolt and to dust the surprised vamp. Cordelia is impressed by his prowess and moved by his caring. The next day, she talks with Angel about her evolving attitude toward men in general, and toward Doyle in particular, coming to the conclusion that Doyle, who might actually have some potential, at least deserves to be treated to a mochachino as a thank-you-for-saving-my-life gesture. Finding Doyle in the outer office, Cordelia doesn't get the chance to extend the invitation. An attractive young woman, with masses of honey curls, opens the front door and just stands at the threshold smiling at Doyle. Stunned, Doyle introduces his wife, Harrie, to an equally stunned Cordelia. Angel has just emerged from the inner office to be introduced when another stranger pokes his head around the front door. Letting himself in, he goes straight to Angel and, introducing himself as Richard, enthusiastically shakes Angel's hand. After being set straight, Richard turns to Harriett and mentions the wedding, producing more stunned expressions all around. Angel firmly escorts Cordelia out of the room and Richard goes back outside to wait (according to the original plan). When they're finally alone together, Harrie gently presents divorce papers to Doyle. Stunned once more, Doyle says he'll have "his people" look the documents over, and Harrie quietly agrees to comes back in a few days.

Later, declining Angel's offer of a shot of scotch, Doyle explains that his demon side, genes he inherited from a father he'd never met, didn't manifest until he turned twenty-one, after he and Harrie were already married. Stating that Harrie left because she couldn't handle the fact that her husband was half demon, Doyle quickly segues into speculation about the real story behind Richard's bland, friendly facade. Worked up and perhaps unaware of his actions, Doyle drinks off Angel's untouched shot. At his friend's request, Angel follows Harrie's fiancé and spots him making a clandestine exchange, then slipping into Straley's Steak House with the package. Inside his family's restaurant's kitchen, Richard hides the small brown-wrapped package in the industrial-sized refrigerator. When Harrie arrives soon after, bearing stacks of department store boxes tied together with twine, Richard goes into a storage area, selects and samples a bottle of sparkling wine, picks up a carving knife, and morphs into a demon. Just as Richard approaches an unsuspecting Harrie, Angel crashes through a plate-glass window and tackles the demon, landing several hard punches before it registers that Richard isn't fighting back and that Harrie is shouting at him to stop. To Angel's extreme confusion and chagrin, it seems Harrie knows about and is okay with Richard being a demon, to the point of having obtained a degree in ethnodemonology. Richard is a benevolent demon, and the knife was for the box ribbons. Harrie further explains that, while she did freak initially, she quickly adjusted to the idea of Doyle's demon heritage—more quickly than Doyle did himself. When Harrie encouraged Doyle to explore that side of himself, however, Doyle refused. Harrie tells Angel that her first husband just shut down and withdrew, and became "pretty much a bitch to live with."

Doyle finally understands that it wasn't his demon half that broke him up with Harrie, it was his own personality flaws. In a rush of regret and resignation, Doyle signs the divorce papers, then hands them over to Harrie as Richard looks on. When she excuses herself to go make photocopies, Richard takes the opportunity to invite Doyle to his bachelor party. He explains that his clan has a tradition of asking the first husband of a remarrying divorcée to give his blessing on the new union. In Angel's office meanwhile, Harrie invites Cordelia to her shower, explaining that Richard's family is very sweet and "into good vibes." At the Straley home later, the family assembles at the dining table for dinner where, passing around a bucket of chicken, they finalize plans for Richard's party. Although the beverage choices literally go without saying, there is some discussion about what food (Buffalo wings vs foie gras) and activities (stripper vs stripper and charades) to provide that would best complement the Ritual of Eating the Ex-husband's Brains.

Doyle brings Angel along to the bachelor party. Richard begins softening Doyle up, hoping to eventually elicit his "blessing," Doyle's symbolic consent to become a ritual sacrifice. Meanwhile, Harrie fills Cordelia in a little more about Doyle's past, alluding to, during her post mortem of their relationship, the qualities that first attracted her to Doyle. Cordelia is astounded to learn that Doyle got his teaching credentials at a young age and taught third grade while married to Harrie. She is less surprised to hear that Harrie met Doyle when both were volunteers at a homeless shelter. Back at the bachelor party, Angel leaves Doyle unattended to investigate the mysterious withdrawal into the back room of Richard's clansmen, Ben and Nick. He overhears Uncle John performing some kind of blood rite upstairs, and phones Cordelia to ask Harrie for a translation of the Aratuscan incantation. As Angel hangs up and turns away from the phone, Nick deliberately incites a brawl. Four demon kin thrash Angel and toss him out a second story window, where he lies unconscious in the alley below.

After the dancer finishes her routine, Richard rejoins Doyle at the bar and asks him whether he's given any thought to blessing the proposed union. Doyle generously finds it in his heart to not stand in the way of Harrie's new chance for love and happiness, and gives Richard his blessing. Hearing the announcement that "consent" has been given, the rest of the guys swarm Doyle and lock him in a wheeled box, shaped like a squat armoire, with doors that enclose his body from the neck down. The hole in the top of the box allows just Doyle's head to be exposed. Uncle John quickly gives Doyle an injection to numb his head and then draws a dotted line across his forehead about halfway between his hairline and his eyebrows. Doyle shouts for Angel, but the ritual proceedings continue uninterrupted. Meanwhile, Harrie and Cordelia discover what could possibly be a very disturbing translation of Uncle John's ceremonial knife-purifying incantation, only to have it confirmed by Aunt Martha. The girls leave the bridal shower with all haste. Out in the alley, Angel regains consciousness and, furious, immediately vamps up. He crashes into the restaurant through another window and Richard's relatives mob him en masse. Richard, just about to cut Doyle's skull open, turns to attack Angel with the ceremonial knife, but Angel kicks it out of his hand and punches the guest of honor hard in the face. Doyle finally morphs into his own demon form, breaks out of the box and joins the fray. At that moment, Harrie and Cordelia arrive and Harrie shouts at the boys to stop. When she confronts Richard about his intention to eat her ex-husband's brains, Richard admits that his family won't allow the marriage unless he performs the ritual, tacitly admitting as well that he'll abide by his clan's wishes. Harrie looks into Richard's eyes and takes his hands in her own for a few moments, then deftly returns her engagement ring, turns, and leaves. With a small smile, Doyle turns away as well.

Angel and Cordelia watch Doyle mope in the darkened outer office until Cordelia goes out and cheers him up in her straight-forward way. All of a sudden, Doyle has yet another painful vision. This time, he recognizes the blond woman from Angel's bookmark photo, apparently fighting for her life against multiple foes. When Angel asks, wide-eyed, what he saw, Doyle hesitates to speak Buffy's name.


  • This episode crosses over with sister show Buffy. In the last scene, Doyle has a vision of Buffy in danger. Angel goes to Sunnydale in Buffy Season Four, Episode Eight, "Pangs".
  • Cordelia's attempt to break free of the stalker vamp by biting his arm is reminiscent of the final battle in the season one finale of Buffy, "Prophecy Girl". Cordelia, trying to barricade the library door from a horde of attacking vampires, bites a vamp's reaching arm and shouts, "See how you like it!"
  • Doyle fulfills the first half of his promise ("Rm w/a Vu") to tell Angel the story of his life by confessing salient points of his failed relationship with Harrie.
  • Doyle has at least two significant opportunities to show Cordelia his demon face, neither of which he takes. The first is when he fights the stalker vamp and chooses to struggle unaugmented rather than reveal his mixed heritage. The second comes when Harrie and Cordelia walk in on the boys' melee. Doyle has just been knocked flying and is lying out of sight under the table in one of the restaurant booths. He groggily sits up during Harrie's tirade—still in demon form. Cordelia, in an excess of concern for her friend, Doyle, vents some of her anger and anxiety by grabbing a handy serving tray and repeatedly bashing the blue-green, spiny thing she believes to be one of the evil, brain-eating demons. Angel hastily comes to Doyle's rescue, both pulling Cordy off and distracting her so she won't see him morph back to human form. It remains unclear whether Cordelia recognizes him as the same person when Doyle deliberately shows her his demon face in "Hero".
  • Doyle has his brains almost eaten out by a shrimp fork. "Shrimp dimensions" are also referenced in some Buffy and other Angel shows.
  • Cordelia's statement that she "says just what she thinks", was previously acknowledged by Buffy when she read Cordelia's mind in Earshot.
  • This episode contains the first evidence of Angel's stinginess which will become a running joke on the show. Here he complains of having to pay for the replacement of the demon restaurant's 'Surprisingly espensive windows'.
  • This episode confirms Doyle's full name to be Allen Francis Doyle. Ironically, this episode aired just after 'The Initiative' which also revealed a main character's full name (that being the recently-departed Daniel 'Oz' Osborne).

Body Count

  • Two vampires, dusted by Angel
  • Russ, dusted by Doyle


  • 3 Vampires



Behind the Scenes

Pop Culture References

  • Mercedes: Cordelia further says Pierce drives a Mercedes-Benz CLK320 coupe.
  • Blue boxes: Cordelia's comment is a reference to Tiffany Jewelers, the high-prestige jeweler that presents all of its merchandise in a distinctive, robin's egg blue box. She believes Pierce could buy her expensive jewelry for the rest of her life.
  • Green card: Cordelia wonders if the Ireland-born Doyle's marriage was related to an immigration scam in which he married in order to obtain work permission in the United States.
  • Yin and yang: Harrie believes Richard is different, yet complementary, to her.
  • Pictionary: The women at the party play Pornographic Pictionary.
  • ESPN: Richard's uncle is a fan of the cable TV sports channel.

International titles

  • German: Party mit Biss (Party with Bite)



  • Guest star Carlos Jacott is one of only five actors to appear on Buffy, Angel, and Firefly. He appeared as Ken in "Anne", the first episode of the third season of Buffy, and in the first episode of Firefly.
  • This episode is one of two Doyle-centric episodes, the other being "Hero".
  • This episode etablished a similar concept to the futur show Grimm, produced by David Greenwalt. The Ano-Movic Clan have a similar modus-operandi to Wesen, recurring creatures on the show.


Cordelia - You were so... brave.
Doyle - You think you could say that again without so much shock in your voice? You're steppin' on my moment of manliness here.
Cordelia - I'm sorry, I'm just, uh...
Doyle - Surprised?
Cordelia - Grateful.
Cordelia - Doyle taught third grade? The kind with children?
Harry - Well, yeah.
Cordelia - Are you sure he wasn't just held back and used that as a cover story?
Brother Straley - [after Harry leaves Richard] You don't need her anyway.
Party Goer - Yeah, who wants a wife whose knees only bend the one way?
Cordelia - Hi, Doyle. Are you gonna become loser pining guy, like, full time now? 'Cuz, you know, we already have one of those around the office.
Angel - Hey.
Doyle - Hey.
Cordelia - He can get away with it. He's tall, and-and look at the way clothes hang on him. But you...
Angel - O-Okay. I think you've cheered us up enough.
Cordelia - You'll get through this, Doyle. Nice guys don't always finish last.
Doyle - You think I'm a nice guy?
Cordelia - I think it, I say it. It's my way.

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