Angel/Ground State

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Ground State
Ground State
Season 4, Episode 2
Airdate October 13, 2002
Production Number 4ADH02
Written by Mere Smith
Directed by Michael Grossman
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Deep Down
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The House Always Wins
AngelSeason Four

Ground State is the second episode of the fourth season of Angel, and the sixty-eighth episode overall. Angel is directed to a mystical artifact that will tell him where Cordelia is, but when he goes to steal it, he finds someone else stealing it first.

Starring: David Boreanaz (Angel), Charisma Carpenter (Cordelia Chase), J. August Richards (Charles Gunn), Amy Acker (Winifred "Fred" Burkle), Vincent Kartheiser (Connor)

and Alexis Denisof (Wesley Wyndam-Pryce)

Guest Starring: Stephanie Romanov (Lilah Morgan), Alexa Davalos (Gwen Raiden), Rena Owen (Dinza)

and Tom Irwin (Elliot)

Co-Starring: Belinda Waymouth (Ms. Thorpe), Heidi Fecht (Mrs. Raiden), Michael Medico (Mr. Raiden), Jessica M. Kiper (Nick), Easton Gage (Young Boy), Megan Corletto (Young Gwen)


Plot Overview

In the quest to find Cordelia’s whereabouts, Angel learns that she’s in another dimension and must retrieve the Axis of Pythia to find her. However, when he, Gunn, and Fred try to steal it, they find a superpowered thief has her sights already on it.


Monster of the Week

  • Dinza: Dinza is a dark demi-goddess who specializes in a connection to the lost. The only ones who can enter her chambers are those who are no longer living (or are undead), but she only allows a handful of them to leave. She isn't trustworthy, but she is able to give the dead an idea of where to look for someone who is lost.

Body Count

# Whom By Whom How Where
1 Gunn (temporarily) Gwen Electrocuted Auction House


There is no licensed music in this episode.

Arc Advancement




  • 2x08 - The Shroud of Rahmon: As a favor to an associate of Gunn's, Angel and Gunn impersonated two members of a heist crew who stole the Shroud of Rahmon. The shroud causes insanity in the people that it comes in contact with and nearly ended with everyone involved in the heist killing each other.
Gunn: Uh, you're not counting the time we stole the crazy making death shroud that nearly killed us, right?


The Show

  • First Appearance: This episode marks the first appearance of Gwen Raiden in the series.
  • M.I.A.: Although Connor appears in this episode, he does not have any lines.

Behind the Scenes

  • Ratings: On its first airing, this episode scored a 3.7/5 in the overnight Nielsen ratings.

Allusions and References

  • City of Atlantis: The mythical city of Atlantis is a legendary island that is said to have been located off the coast of Greece. In Plato's dialogues, it was said that the island was flood and toppled to the bottom of the sea. Some interpretations of this myth claim that the people living in the city mutated to cope with the change, but in others the city is simply in ruins.
Angel: Really? City of Atlantis?
  • The Holy Grail: Prior to his betrayal at the hands of Judas, Jesus Christ held a feast in which he and his apostles likely celebrated Passover. The cup that Jesus drank out of (which is featured prominently in Da Vinci's The Last Supper) is said to be the Holy Grail, a cup that can bestow eternal life.
Angel: Holy Grail?
  • Jimmy Hoffa: Jimmy Hoffa was the president of the teamsters, one of the largest labor unions in the nation, between the mid-1950s to the 1960s. He had known mafia ties and, in 1975, disappeared off the face of the Earth. There are many conspiracy theories which surround Hoffa's disappearance, particularly ones which implicate the mafia in his disappearance. Hoffa was legally declared dead in 1982.
Angel: Jimmy Hoffa?
  • The Graduate: The Graduate is a novel written by Charles Webb which was also adapted into an immensely popular film of the same name. The movie starred Dustin Hoffman as a young man who Mrs. Robinson (Anne Bancroft) attempts to seduce. The film is notable for its soundtrack by Simon & Garfunkle and for launching Hoffman's career.
Lilah: Looks like Connor's gonna need someone who cares. Like a big sister, or, hey Mrs. Robinson, if that's what he's into.
  • Batman: In the Batman television series in the 1960s, Adam West and Burt Ward (Batman and Robin, respectively) were often seen climbing up the sides of tall buildings with nothing but rope or a grappling hook line.
Gunn: This is so much harder than it looks on Batman.
  • Denzel: Gwen refers to Denzel Washington, an actor who gained popularity with his roles in films like Malcolm X and Training Day. Gunn previously mentioned Washington when he said that he was robbed by the Academy Awards when he didn't win for his role as Malcolm X.
Gwen: Hey there, Denzel.
  • Lex Luthor: Lex Luthor is Superman's archenemy. Throughout the years, Luthor has taken on several different personas including mad scientist, evil businessman and even president of the United States. His main goal in life remains to destroy Superman, but he usually attempts this in a scientific way.
Gwen: What are you, Lex Luthor?

Memorable Moments


  • Fred: Sure. Banished to the ocean depths by your ungrateful snot of a son.
Gunn: Not that she's bitter.
  • Angel: What should I do then? Send her a gift? Sacrifice? Unholy fruit basket?
  • Angel: You know who I am.
Dinza: I know you were lost. I know all the lost things.
Angel: Really? City of Atlantis? Holy Grail. Jimmy Hoffa.
  • Angel: Why should I trust you?
Dinza: Because I'd love to keep you, but you have so much more to loose.
  • Elliot: Thought I said discreet!
Gwen: What? Do you see nipple?
  • Fred: I'm still working on a plan, but so far it involves being sent to prison and becoming somebody's bitch.
  • Gunn: (about Fred) That's my girl - large and in charge. Ok, teensy weeny and in charge.
  • Wesley: I had to raise him. Angel is... necessary.
Lilah: For what?
Wesley: Fighting people like you.
  • Angel: You're lying.
Gwen: I'm fibbing. It's lying, only classier.
  • Angel: Miss me?
Lilah: Only in the sense of... no.
  • Lilah: Look, Angel. I know you've been out of the loop for a while, but I'm still evil. I don't do errands unless they're... evil errands.
Angel: I think you'll run this one.
Lilah: Why? What's in it for me?
Angel: Just this once, I'll ignore the fact that you're within fifty yards of my son. (leans in and whispers) Just this once.
Lilah: So much for moral high ground, huh? It's interesting - you coming to me for help.
Angel: What I find interesting? The fact that I can smell you and Wesley all over each other. Start making calls. You got an hour.
  • Gunn: (looking at his ECG) Kinda like art isn't it? I call it "Takes More Than That To Kill Me, Punk". It's the "Punk" that makes it art.
  • Gwen: (to Angel) You're really going to use that Axis thing to find her, aren't you? Figures. Anyone that bad at stealing stuff's got to be doing it for love. Bummer.
  • Angel: All those months under the water I kept thinking to myself "I gotta get home to Cordelia." I get back and I find out that she's gone. I keep thinking "I gotta get Cordy back home." Finally I find her and I realise she already is home. Where she belongs.
Cordelia: (watching from heavenly dimension) What are you? Deficient? Get me out of here!