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"Eternity" is the seventeenth episode of the first season of Angel and the seventeenth episode in the series. It was originally broadcast on April 4, 2000, on The WB network.


BEAUTY AND THE VAMPIREAngel rescues a popular young actress from a stalker, but when he finds himself taken with her and confesses his true identity, she goes to drastic measures to secure eternal youth and beauty.[1]


Angel and Wesley are attending a rehearsal for a play in which Cordelia has a part. They want to escape but see no way to do it. Afterward, the three of them are walking together when Cordelia spots Oliver Simon, a well-known talent manager, and a famous actress, Rebecca Lowell. When Rebecca crosses the street, a parked car pulls into traffic and accelerates toward her, as if the driver intends to murder her. Angel pushes her out of the car's path, saving her life. Oliver offers Angel a reward, but he refuses to accept it. Cordelia gives Rebecca a business card for Angel Investigations.

The next day, the papers report on the rescue, but Angel is not mentioned in the story. Rebecca and two bodyguards come to the Angel Investigations offices, asking for Angel's help with a stalker fan. Angel declines to take the case. This angers Cordelia, who sees it as a chance for her to network with Hollywood people. Wesley explains that Angel cannot take the case because he likes Rebecca and is afraid of getting close. Angel remains silent. When Wesley says he agrees with Angel's decision not to take the case, Cordelia pretends to have visions about Rebecca being in danger, but Wesley and Angel are not fooled.

At her house, Rebecca's esthetician is waxing her face, while the two discuss plastic surgery, which Rebecca is considering. She hosts a party that night, and, after her guests leave, a masked man breaks in. Angel breaks through a sliding glass door to protect Rebecca. The masked man escapes. Rebecca notices that Angel has no reflection, and Angel disappears. Rebecca's bodyguards arrive soon after, saying that they have called the police. After the police leave the house, Rebecca calls out Angel, knowing he hasn't actually left. She knows he is a vampire but is not frightened. She asks Angel to stay in the house for the night.

The next morning, Angel phones Wesley to say he is taking Rebecca's case. Cordelia is worried that Angel might have sex with Rebecca, revoking his soul and turning him back into Angelus. She goes to Rebecca's house with three lattes and a large wooden cross, and Angel, who answers the door, tells her that Rebecca knows he is a vampire.

Rebecca has lunch with Oliver, who tells her that she did not get a part she was hoping for. Oliver says the producers want to hear her read. Back at her house, Rebecca tells Angel that she is not used to reading for parts. Her career is in decline, after more than a year off the air.

That night, Rebecca attends a premiere, with Angel as her bodyguard. After making their appearance on the red carpet, Rebecca leads Angel out the back door, as she never watches the movie. As they walk down the alley behind the theater, an attacker in evening dress shoots at them, but Angel fights him off. Rebecca recognizes the attacker as a stunt man whom Oliver once represented. When Oliver appears at the scene, he confesses that he arranged the attacks on Rebecca to get publicity for her. Rebecca guesses that she did not get the part she was hoping for, and Oliver explains that she is now too "mature" for some roles. When he mentions that no one can stay young forever, Rebecca glances at Angel.

Back at Angel Investigations, Wesley and Angel discuss how the shooter was using blanks, and they conclude that it was a hoax. Angel is worried that Rebecca will be hurt if she learns that no one cares about her enough to stalk her.

Rebecca invites an excited Cordelia to go shopping with her. As the two walk the streets of LA, Rebecca pumps Cordelia for information on Angel.

Rebecca comes to Angel Investigations uninvited. Finding Angel in his basement apartment, she offers him a bottle of champagne as a gift. She spills some of her wine on Angel, who leaves to change his shirt. Meanwhile, she pours a powder into his drink. When he returns, she offers a toast and the two drink.

Cordelia pages Wesley to her apartment. When he arrives, she tells him that Rebecca was curious about Angel and confesses that she told Rebecca much about him, including intimate details on how one becomes a vampire. Cordelia has guessed that Rebecca wants to be a vampire herself to stay young forever.

At Angel's apartment, Angel is more relaxed and it seems the drug is taking effect. In a seductive manner, Rebecca suggests that Angel make her a vampire. Angel refuses, saying she doesn't know what she is doing. In sudden rage, he takes blood from his refrigerator and sprays some of it into her mouth so she will have a taste of what she is asking for. Surprised at his own feelings and actions, Angel guesses that she drugged him. She admits it, saying she wanted to lower his defenses a little by slipping him a "happy pill." However, the pill has caused Angel to feel perfect bliss, reverting him into Angelus, who bites her shoulder and takes on his vamp face. She strikes him with a candle stick, then escapes into the elevator.

Rebecca's elevator stops between floors, so she attempts to escape from the bottom of the elevator into Angel's office, where she finds Wesley and Cordelia. She admits that she gave Angel a drug called Doximall, a powerful tranquilizer that induces bliss. Wesley is sure that the effects will wear off, as the happiness was only synthetic, and hopes the good Angel will return once the drug wears off. The lights go out as Angelus cuts the power, and he enters the office, where he mocks Wesley for his inferiority complex and Cordelia for her bad acting. She threatens him with a bottle of water, which she claims is holy water. Angelus says she is bluffing, but Cordelia insists she knew there was a chance Angelus could return. When Cordelia splashes it on him, he recoils, only to discover it is just normal water. However, Wesley takes advantage of the momentary confusion and pushes Angelus down the elevator shaft, rendering the vampire unconscious.

When Angel wakes up, he is chained to his bed. After confirming that Rebecca is gone and will no longer be using his services, he apologizes to Cordelia and Wesley for what he said. Wesley accepts, telling Angel he understands what a fine line he walks. Cordelia is still angry, though not for what he said as Angelus, but for the fact he didn't tell her the truth about her acting. She notes that at least he's honest when he doesn't have a soul. She eventually agrees to put the incident behind her, though she leaves Angel still chained to the bed.


  • Cordelia and Angel recall attending the same party as Oliver Simon, in "City Of."
  • This marks the first real reappearance of the "Angelus" persona since "Becoming, Part Two."
  • This episode demonstrates that the "moment of perfect happiness" that triggers Angel's curse does not have to be sexual. As Wesley points out, Angel became "Angelus" in the episode "Surprise" not because he had sex, but because he was with Buffy.
  • "Angelus" later returns in episodes "Awakening" through "Orpheus" after the gang purposefully removes Angel's soul in order to question Angelus about the Beast.
  • Angel and Rebecca discuss the onscreen depictions of Dracula, whom Buffy later faces off against in "Buffy vs. Dracula."



Organizations and titles[]




Rituals and spells[]

Death count[]

  • None.

Behind the scenes[]


  • Originally, Angel was envisioned as being an anthology, with the client of the week providing the emotional center for each episode. However, as the first season progressed, the writers began to concentrate on the emotional interplay between the main characters instead. As producer Tim Minear explains, "You can have an interesting plot and an interesting client, but it's difficult to create sympathy for someone you're introducing for one episode." This episode at first presents events from the guest character's point of view, but "if you look at how the episode ended up," Minear says, "it's really about our core people, and by the end of the episode the client's gone. There's not even a wrap up scene at the end with the actress. It's all about Angel being chained to the bed and Cordelia not untying him." In the first versions of the script, the emotional focus remained on Rebecca for the entire episode, until creator Joss Whedon decided to add the element of Angel going bad. "If that episode had gone before the cameras earlier in the rotation, I think you would have probably seen a different ending, with more emphasis placed on the actress and her problem than on Angel," Minear says.[2]
  • Minear says: "I know there was a lot of criticism on the Internet about the way he went bad, and did he really go bad?" However, he feels the drug was a good plot device to bring Angelus into the series "so that he could interact with our characters without doing some big 'Angel has turned evil' arc. You sort of get to have your cake and eat it too in that episode." He adds: "I saw some criticism about Cordelia reacting too Cordelia-like in the first half of the episode with her star-struckness. But that would be her."[3]
  • Rebecca Lowell lives in the same mansion where Lady Gaga's "Poker Face" music video would later be shot in 2008.[4]


  • "Eternity" had an audience of 3.3 million households upon its original airing.[5]

Deleted scenes[]

  • The following lines discussing Cordelia's role in A Doll's House were cut for length:[6]
    Wesley: "I've always regarded Nora as one of the seminal characters of late-nineteenth, early-twentieth century literature."
    Cordy: "Yeah, but I thought I managed to breathe a little life into her, anyway. You have to train for a tour de force like this, lots of water, lots of power walking."
    Wesley: "Yes, I, uh, don't recall seeing Ibsen's Nora portrayed as a power-walker before."
    Cordy: "I brought that to the part, the director was, like, clueless."

Pop culture references[]

  • Cordelia stars in the play A Doll's House by Norwegian writer Henrik Ibsen. Cordelia portrays Nora Helmer, the female lead, and the scene shown is from the first act.
  • Rebecca mentions that "ET" has arrived, referring to the newsmagazine program Entertainment Tonight. Wesley wonders if "ET" refers to Emma Thompson, a well-known British actress.
  • Cordelia says Rebecca will eventually only have an episode from the documentary series E! True Hollywood Story.
  • Rebecca offers to show Angel an episode for which she didn't win an Emmy Award.
  • Rebecca is rumored to have slept with the actor Ernest Borgnine (1917–2012).
  • Angel and Rebecca attends a red carpet in front of the footwear store Payless ShoeSource.
  • Rebecca says Bela Lugosi and Gary Oldman are vampires, to which Angel replies Frank Langella was the only performance he believed. They refer to three actors who have played Dracula: Lugosi in Dracula in 1931, Langella in 1979's Dracula, and Oldman in Bram Stoker's Dracula in 1992.
  • After fooling Angelus into thinking she is holding holy water, Cordelia says, "And the Oscar goes to..." referencing the Academy Awards.



International titles[]

  • Czech: "Věčnost" (Eternity)
  • Finnish: "Painajainen" (Nightmare)
  • French: "Jeunesse éternelle" (Eternal Youth)
  • German: "Für immer jung" (Forever Young)
  • Hungarian: "Örökkévalóság" (Eternity)
  • Italian: "L'eterna giovinezza" (Eternal Youth)
  • Portuguese (Brazil): "A Eternidade" (The Eternity)
  • Russian: "Вечность" (Eternity)
  • Spanish (Latin America): "La eternidad" (The Eternity)
  • Spanish (Spain): "Eternidad" (Eternity)
  • Turkish: "Sonsuzluk" (Eternity)


Wesley: "We're doomed."
Angel: "Maybe we can make a break for it.
Wesley: "Impossible.
Angel: "Front exit?
Wesley: "We'd be spotted instantly.
Angel: "Back door?
Wesley: "Blocked.
Angel: "That's it, then. We're trapped.
Wesley: "We could try shouting 'fire.' It's not technically a crowded theater..."
Angel: "Cordelia, you're here... And you brought a cross."
Cordelia: "And along with 3 double half-calf non-fat skinny lattes."
Angel: "And a cross."
Cordelia: "Well, judging by the outfit, I guess it's safe to come in. Evil Angel never would have worn those pants."
Wesley: "What did you give him?"
Rebecca: "Does it matter?"
Cordelia: "Well, if he's all homicidal, I'm thinking: yeah!"
Angel: "So we're okay then?"
Cordelia: "I'm too big a person to let something so petty get in the way of our friendship."
Angel: "I appreciate that... You're going to untie me, are you? Wesley? Cordelia? Guys?"


  1. "EpisodeGuideSeason1." Geocities.ws. Retrieved on February 18, 2023.
  2. Edward Gross, "ANGEL: Season One, Episode By Episode with Tim Minear." TimMinear.net 5.0, August 14, 2000. Archived from the original on August 16, 2016.
  3. Edward Gross, "ANGEL: Season One, Episode By Episode with Tim Minear - Part 4." TimMinear.net 5.0, September 26, 2000. Archived from the original on July 30, 2018.
  4. Lady Gaga, "Lady Gaga - Poker Face (Official Music Video)." YouTube, December 20, 2009.
  5. "Nielsen Ratings for Angel's First Season." Nielsen Ratings for Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, & Firefly. Archived from the original on July 18, 2008.
  6. Nancy Holder, Jeff Mariotte, and Maryelizabeth Hart. The Casefiles, Volume 1. Simon Pulse, June 2002.