The Best Buffy Episodes

Buffy the Vampire SlayerThis one is for the Buffy the Vampire Slayer fans. I promised this a month ago, wrote most of the post, then promptly forgot about it. But I thought it might be fun to unleash on a freebie day like Labor Day.

As I was rewatching Buffy this summer, I realized that there are some fantastic episodes. Unlike most shows, there are specific episodes you can pick out distinct from the overarching storylines. I expect this list has been made by many people and I expect you all will debate me on my choices. But these are my favorites (VERY Season 5 and 6 heavy because I like those best and I just watched those). Many, many spoilers follow.

Becoming (Part 2) – Season 2

I chose this episode purely for the final moments between Angel and Buffy. As I repeatedly tell Ben when he fails to grasp the amazingness that is this show: Angel gets his soul back and she has to kill him anyway. How tragic is that?

The Body – Season 5

Possibly the one of the greatest single episodes of television ever. This is the episode after Joyce’s death. Buffy and the others, who fight vampires and demons every day, have to deal with a natural death for the first time. A very real and gritty look at grief. Completely heart-shattering. Just try to watch it without sobbing.

The Gift – Season 5

Again, try not to sob at the end of this episode as Buffy realizes what she has to do and sacrifices herself for Dawn. We may all hate Dawn but this is true sisterly love.

Once More With Feeling – Season 6

Not only is there singing and dancing, but this episode really advances the storyline. The moment that they all realize she was in heaven and they took her away from it (the look on Willow’s face) – SO good. I own the soundtrack and listen to it often.

Tabula Rasa – Season 6

I always get excited for Once More With Feeling and then I watch the next episode and remember how much I love it as well. All of the characters forget who they are which makes for some amusing assumptions (Spike thinks Giles is his father; Giles thinks Anya is his fiance; Xander and Willow think they are a couple).

Smashed – Season 6

Just like I added Becoming purely for the Angel/Buffy scene, this one makes the list for the Buffy/Spike action. I love Spike more than a normal person should love a fictional character (until I remember the scene in Buffy’s bathroom – why must he be ruined for me like that?).  I love this culmination of the Buffy-Spike relationship (even if she’s is horrible to him and he is pathetic for returning every time).

[And yes, these last three episodes all air in that order in Season 6. Have I mentioned that I love Season 6.]

Normal Again – Season 6

This is the episode where Buffy hallucinates that she is a patient in a mental hospital and everything since she arrived in Sunnydale is a fantasy. Or is it the other way around? Therein lies the beauty of this one.

Chosen – Season 7

Just a really good finale.

Honorable Mention: I Will Remember You – Angel Season 1

This is actually an episode of Angel but any Buffy fan should watch it. Buffy and Angel get their happy ending for a brief moment before Angel must give it all up to save the world. And Angel is the only one who knows that happiness ever existed.

Please note, I intentionally left Hush off of this list. I know most people would include it but it creeps the hell out of me and I can’t watch it alone.

So how did I do? What gems did I miss? How similar would your list look?

17 thoughts on “The Best Buffy Episodes

  1. Jan September 5, 2011 / 8:07 am

    Hi, I agree with your list, all great eps. You missed some in my opinion:

    The Wish

    Otherwise perfect!


    • Michelle September 5, 2011 / 12:27 pm

      The Wish and Doppelgangland should probably be on it. But I stand by my decision to leave of Hush. Too creepy for me. 🙂


      • Jan September 6, 2011 / 3:39 am

        Yeah, I`m with you, Hush is extremely creepy – but genius nevertheless 🙂


  2. See Elle Oh September 5, 2011 / 9:15 am

    Brilliant list! I am also a huge fan of Season 6, largely due to the Spike/Buffy storyline, so I’m glad to see so many of my faves on there. I liked “Lover’s Walk” a lot, as well as “Hush”.


    • Michelle September 5, 2011 / 12:30 pm

      Season 6 really is the best. Sometimes I just skip right to that season.


      • Jan September 6, 2011 / 3:40 am



  3. zibilee September 5, 2011 / 10:58 am

    I have never watched this show, but according to many people in my life, I have been sheltered from something really great. I probably should try to get the disks from Netflix and give it a go. I hate missing out on something this good!


    • Michelle September 5, 2011 / 12:31 pm

      They are on Watch Instantly. You can start right now!


  4. dogearedcopy September 5, 2011 / 11:21 am

    Okay , I pretty much love all of BTVS (except the Riley episodes) but if I had to pick the best-of-the best:

    The Wish
    The Body
    Normal Again

    There was something so insanely great about those shows and I really miss that kind of television. BTVS managed to somehow really creep into my psyche and yes, I still have a BTVS dream every once in while!


    • Michelle September 5, 2011 / 12:31 pm

      Ugh – the Riley episodes. I always forget how long he was on.


  5. Swapna September 5, 2011 / 11:29 am

    At some point, I swear I WILL get past the second disc of Season 4. Everyone tells me that Season 4 is a low point and it gets better, but I haven’t plowed my way through S4 yet.


    • Michelle September 5, 2011 / 12:32 pm

      S4 is tough. Mostly because of Riley. He’s painful. But it gets really good after that.


  6. Christa September 5, 2011 / 11:59 am

    I think Season 6 is probably my favorite Season but I also love Season 3. A couple episodes I love are

    Lovers Walk – When Spike comes back to get Drusilla back.
    Amends – I actually watch this if I need a good cry because it never fails to make me cry.
    The Zeppo
    Honestly almost every episode of Season 3 I love!

    Season 4 is probably my least favorite season but I do love This Year’s Girl and Who Are You? When Faith comes back and switches bodies with Buffy.

    I’m like you Hush is not a favorite episode of mine. It’s good but it doesn’t make favorite’s list like everyone else it seems.


    • Michelle September 5, 2011 / 12:35 pm

      Season 3 was a high point too. Sometimes I forget that after suffering through Season 4.


  7. Michelle September 5, 2011 / 3:53 pm

    Great list! Hush is creepy, and I struggle watching it but it definitely ranks up there among the best. The Wish is another excellent one.


  8. Linda September 5, 2011 / 9:04 pm

    I thought I might have missed this post. I agree with your list. If I watch Once More Feeling I have to watch Tabula Rasa.


  9. Melissa September 6, 2011 / 11:53 am

    I love your choices! I watched the entire series for the first time last summer and I loved it. Tabula Rasa is definitely one of my all-time favorites. I’ve debated watching Angel, but haven’t checked it out yet.


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