My 10 Favorite Buffy Episodes (in chronological order):
1. School Hard
2. Band Candy
3. Lover’s Walk
4. The Wish
6. Something Blue
8. Fool For Love
9. Once More With Feeling
10. Normal Again
Followed closely by:
11. The Pack
13. Becoming Part 2
14. The Zeppo
17. Who Are You?
19. Tabula Rasa
20. Conversations with Dead People
Do you see a pattern? I do! It’s not just funny ones, which is what I would have guessed going in. They are largely alternate realities, with a couple of episodes wherein our understanding of Things As They Are take a permanent turn. A case could be made that every Buffy episode does that, but that aspect is really strong in the episodes I’ve chosen. They’re the ones that subvert the show! A show that in my opinion was already subversive. It’s a post-modern subversithon! I can’t get enough! A lot of my favorites are pretty funny, though. Strangely, there’s only one season finale on the list. I guess the big heroics aren’t my first reason for watching, after all.
Strangest of all? Five of them contain no Spike! Gasp! Inconceivable!
Breakdown by Season:
Season 1 — 1, Season 2 — 3, Season 3 — 5, Season 4 — 5, Season 5 — 2, Season 6 — 3, Season 7 — 2
The only real surprise there is that there are so many Season 3 episodes on the list. I'm not a huge fan of Season 5, though it has some absolutely tremendous moments, but I would have thought there would be more in Season 2 and Season 6, both of which I love. The heart is fickle...
6 of my top 21 were written by Jane Espenson, 5 by Joss Whedon, 2 by Dan Vebber, and 8 by others. There have been some nice things said about Jane on LJ in the last couple of days, so I'll just pile on and say that, according to the numbers, she's my favorite Buffy writer! Go Jane!
So, what are your favorite episodes and do you know why? C'mon! Dish!