Monday, March 05, 2007

Buffy: The Best and the Worst
When working on the Toronto Star article, Malene and I came up with separate best of lists of our top 10 eps, and our least favourite 5. Then for space reasons they asked us to put them together, so we combined them as the top 15, bottom 5. And then for space reasons they cut them altogether.

Buffy, like most shows, is made up of moments. It's hard to dislike entire episodes, or say this one episode is better than another. But it's in remembering the favourite moments of the series -- the ones that made you weep, or sob, or laugh out loud -- that we realize why we loved a certain show. The scene, pictured, for example, just hurts my heart looking at it. I can hear the music swelling, I know what she's about to do next, and what the repercussions of that act will be. (Oh god, I think I have to go watch Becoming Part II RIGHT NOW.) Buffy jumping off the tower, with the voiceover of her telling Dawn the hardest thing in this world is to live in it. Buffy wandering into the house and seeing her mom on the couch and saying, "Whatcha doin? Mom? ...Mom?... Mommy?" (Oh man, now I have to go watch The Body.) Spike tied to a chair yelling at Buffy, "YOU MADE A BEAR!! Undo it! Undo it!" (Whew, I needed something funny in there or I was gonna lose it.) Spike sitting by Buffy's bed near the end of the series and telling her what an amazing person she is. It's these moments that make a show. And interestingly enough, my all-time favourite moment on Buffy -- "I'd like to test that theory" -- was in an episode that didn't make it to the top 15. So it goes to show that moments can be more important than the entire package.

I'll feature some of my favourite quotes throughout the week. But until then, here was the list that was supposed to run as a sidebar with the article (the list of eps combined my and Malene's choices, and the mini-descriptions are Malene's). Feel free to debate, argue, and mostly agree with me. And Crissy, I'm definitely looking forward to your defense of Beer Bad. ;)

"Passion" The one where Angelus torments Buffy and breaks Jenny's neck
"Becoming, Part II" The one where Buffy kills Angel
"The Wish" The one with the alternate reality and skanky, vampy Willow
"The Zeppo" The one where Xander saves the day
"Pangs" The one where Buffy frantically cooks Thanksgiving dinner, fights Indian spirits and gives Spike asylum
"Hush" The one that's silent
"A New Man" The one where Giles becomes a demon
"Restless" The one with the cool hallucinations
"Fool for Love" The one where we learn Spike was a wussy poet
"The Body" The one where Buffy's mother dies
"The Gift" The one where Buffy sacrifices herself and, kinda, dies. For the second time
"Once More with Feeling" The one where everybody sings
"Tabula Rasa" The one where no one remembers who they are
"Conversations with Dead People" The one where conversations are had with, well, dead people

"I Robot, You Jane" The one where Willow falls in love with a stupid cyber monster thingy.
"Beer Bad" The one where Buffy gets drunk and her hair is super-ugly
"Superstar" The one where a wimpy geek alters reality
"Where the Wild Things Are" The one where Riley and Buffy can't stop having sex. Gag. Eew.
"Him" The one where everyone, even the lesbian, falls in love with a teenaged football player


The Chapati Kid said...

I don't know how hot this is, but I found out that 150,000 copies of the first Buffy comic have been pulped because of a printing error, so the new comic won't be out until next week. And the printer's paying for the mistake and they've gone straight back to press.

Anonymous said...

Y'know, "The Gift" was not the second time Buffy died. We also watched her die in the alternative universe of "Doppelgangland." And in a sense, she died one other time: in "Nightmares" the gang found her grave, with her in it--as a vampire. Her death was undone both times, but still, she died in the course of each of these two episodes.

Also, I'm one of the minority who thinks "Beer Bad" is hilarious. There are inspired moments all through it, but my favorite comes right at the end. The cave-students are locked in a car and raucously entertaining themselves. Buffy goes to them, apparently feeling a connection. She and one of the boys match hands against the window, one on either side of the glass. Her friends drag her away, and the boy goes back to tumbling inside the car. His bare feet end up by the window as the camera retreats. Yeah, I know, it doesn't sound funny when described. The humor is all in the expressions and the comic timing.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you on Beer Bad and Where the Wild Things Are being on the Worst 5 but the other 3 I liked. "I Robot, You Jane" may have not been the best episode but it was nice to see Willow in the spotlight and it's the first appearance of Jenny and I love her and Giles fighting about the computer. "Superstar" was just hilarious to me. I loved seeing Johnathan again, and everyone thinking he was an amazing god. Although it didn't have the best ending it was good in my opinion. And as for "Him" I think it was a good episode that got all the characters back together after the Willow and Anya trouble. I also thought it was just hilarious where Anya gave Willow the idea to turn RJ into a girl and I love when Anya turns off the radio during the announcement about the bank robbery.