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"Habeas Corpses" is the eighth episode of the fourth season of Angel and the seventy-fourth episode in the series. Written by Jeffrey Bell and directed by Skip Schoolnik, it was originally broadcast on January 15, 2003, on The WB network.


When Angel realizes that there may be some connection between Connor and the Beast, he learns that Connor is trapped within Wolfram & Hart where the building is under lock-down and the Beast is on a brutal killing spree. Angel, Wesley, Gunn and Fred must figure out how to spring Connor before he is killed as well.[1]


The members of Angel Investigations reassemble at the hotel offices after their fight against the Beast. Angel tries to contain his rage after seeing Cordelia and Connor have sex, while Fred and Gunn reconcile, and Wesley finally decides to break off his fling with Lilah.

Connor pays a visit to Wolfram & Hart, where the Beast kills Gavin and most of the staff. Lilah manages to escape, and Wesley leads Angel, Gunn, and Fred into the locked-down offices. They find Connor, and all the victims of the Beast reanimate as zombies out to kill.

The AI team discusses the ways to escape the building. Angel tells them about the White Room and has Fred override the automatic shutdown of the elevators. Angel manages to remember the code after a couple of failed attempts, and they are all transported to the White Room. The Beast is already there, draining energy from the little girl who acts as the Conduit to the Senior Partners.

Angel asks how to get out. The girl tells them the answer is "among you." As the Beast leaves her and starts to advance on the AI team, the girl transports them back to the hotel before she dies. In Angel's office, Cordelia tells him of her relief everyone is okay. Angel reveals he knows she and Connor slept together; he orders her to take her new boyfriend and leave.


  • Angel demonstrates his photographic memory, previously seen in "Supersymmetry."
  • The inside of the Wolfram & Hart Los Angeles branch is destroyed and every employee (except Lilah) is killed. It will be remodeled and running again in "Home."
  • The Beast kills Mesektet. She first appeared in "Forgiving" and her true nature and name will be uncovered by Wesley in the following episode, "Long Day's Journey".
  • On the next time the White Room is seen, in "Home," the Big Cat is shown to be Mesektet's successor as the Conduit to the Senior Partners.



Organizations and titles[]





Death count[]

  • Wolfram & Hart's staff, killed by the Beast.
  • Gavin Park, neck snapped by the Beast and, in zombie form, beheaded by Gunn.
  • Mesektet, essence extracted by the Beast.

Behind the scenes[]


  • The title is a play on the legal term "habeas corpus." In a legal setting, habeas corpus is an order to allow a detained prisoner to be brought before a judge or into court, and is invoked when there is a lack of sufficient cause or evidence to detain the prisoner. The phrase in Latin translates roughly to "you have the body"; the episode's title would translate to "you have bodies."
  • The teaser to this episode is the shortest in the series at 14 seconds.
  • This episode contains visual references to Resident Evil, a film in which a virus is released that gradually turns everyone in an underground installation into zombies and the main characters have to fight their way out.


  • "Habeas Corpses" had an audience of 2.6 million households upon its original airing.[2]

Pop culture references[]

  • Gunn asks why the Beast would go "all Terminator" on its own team.
  • Angel says there are "too many dead men walking."
  • Lilah mentions the LoJack stolen vehicle recovery system.


International titles[]

  • Czech: "Habeas Corpus"
  • Finnish: "Verilöyly" (Massacre)
  • French: "Le piège" (The Trap)
  • German: "Das weiße Zimmer" (The White Room)
  • Hungarian: "Habeas Corpses"
  • Italian: "Habeas Corpses"
  • Portuguese (Brazil): "Habeas Corpos" (Habeas Bodies)
  • Russian: "Законодательный труп" (Legislative Corpse)
  • Spanish (Latin America): "Juicio final" (Final Judgment)
  • Spanish (Spain): "Muertos vivientes" (Living Dead)
  • Turkish: "İhzar Cesetleri"


  1. "angel: Habeas Corpses." TheWB.com. Archived from the original on August 14, 2004.
  2. "Nielsen Ratings for Angel's Fourth Season." Nielsen Ratings for Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, & Firefly. Archived from the original on July 6, 2008.