In Season 3, Episode 11 "Birthday" Cordy is given the choice to rewrite history and live a different life had she not seen Angel in the first episode, leading to her having became a rich and famous actress. The reason she was given this choice was because Doyle wasn't meant to give the Visions to Cordy which would literally kill her (as we see another human with the back of her head having been exploded by one of her Visions).

After history is rewritten though Cordy is drawn to the Hyperion Hotel where Angel Investigations would have moved to and finds the writing on the wall in Angel's room she had written when she tried to possess Angel to direct him where to go to resolve the vision that caused her initial coma.

We know that the rewritten history should be free of anything relating to Cordy being in Angel Investigations because:

  • Fred was missing and one would assume to still be in Pylea as Angel, Gun and Wesley only went there to save Cordy who was sucked though the portal.

  • Gun and Wesley had Angel elsewhere and still turned up to slay the demon Cynthia summoned without Cordy's hint.

Yet she was drawn to the Hyperion Hotel to a hint that shouldn't exist. Does this mean the the Powers actually wanted Cordy to have the Visions anyway? If not then why did the Powers not correct at-least the hint Cody left behind in the original timeline?

2 Answers 2


This may be opinion-based, as there's not much in the way of explicit evidence, but my interpretation of this episode was that the alternate reality Cordelia experienced was one she created herself. Skip gave her the option, but she exercised it and thus created the new timeline she "wanted."

The hint that shouldn't exist did exist because, subconsciously at least, Cordelia didn't want things to change. She didn't want to die from the visions, but she also didn't really want to give up the life she had with Angel & co. When she found her way back to the hotel and ended up reclaiming the visions from Angel, that was her ultimate decision regarding the choice Skip had given her.

Everything in that alternate reality stemmed from Cordy's wish-fulfillment in having the celebrity lifestyle she always thought she wanted, and the consequences that wrought on her friends, but ultimately, it was a reality built from her desires.

The Powers then rewarded her for making such a noble choice (knowing it would kill her), by making her half-demon, so she wouldn't die after all. So, did they want her to have the visions? We'll never know what they wanted, but clearly they accepted that she wanted the visions, in order to help people.


Although the source cannot be entirely trusted, Skip gives some indication that many of the events of the first three and a bit seasons were engineered as part of the Beastmaster's plan, including Cordy receiving the visions from Doyle, her acceptance of part-demonhood, and eventual ascendance.

This could mean the whole alternate reality was a ruse to make Cordy choose the only option.

(Of course, this aspect was written in after Carpenter surprising Whedon with her pregnancy, forcing him to modify his plans through season 4)

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