Now to my Top Five Favorite Episodes- these are episodes that I have watched again and again because they are that good!
5. I Only Have Eyes for You
In this episode, weird things are happening at Sunnydale High that have nothing to do with vampires: instead it’s ghosts! Giles realizes that it’s a poltergeist of some sort and thinks that it is Ms. Calendar. Instead, the haunting is related to a crime of passion from 1955 when a Sunnydale High student James Stanley shot dead his teacher and lover, Grace Newman. The song “I Only Have Eyes for You” sets the mood for this engaging episode that possesses two of the main characters into reliving this crime of passion.
4. Tabula Rasa
Truths are outed in this clever episode. The Scoobies fall under a magic spell cast by Willow. They wake up in the Magic Bod without memories of who they are and begin to draw their own conclusions. As they are trying to figure out who they are, a loan shark and his vampire goons come looking for Spike. The Scoobies engage in a fight for their lives and in the process break the spell, but the damage is done. Big shifts in their relations are inevitable now.
3. Normal Again
In this episode, the Evil Trio (Warren, Jonathan and Andrew) summon a demon to take down Buffy. Buffy fights the demon but in the process is pierced by a poison skewer that causes her to hallucinate. The hallucinations cause her to doubt her reality and her relationships. She even questions who she really is. This episode is a a fantasy within a fantasy and its ending is purposefully ambiguous. Joss Whedon asks the viewer to decide! Loved it. It is sooooo darn good.
2. Once More with Feeling
Buffy and the Scoobies are once again struggling in their personal lives with doubt, deceit, and miscommunication. A demon is summoned to Sunnydale that causes everyone to break out in song and dance uncontrollably until they are consumed by fire. The gang converges at the Bronze to save one of their own from becoming the demon’s bride resulting in a fabulous ensemble number that sheds light on each characters’ inner most feelings and hidden truths. I love, love, love this episode! The musical numbers written by the show’s creator, Joss Whedon, are fun, catchy and just pure genius! This episode also serves as a turning point for most of the characters and kicks off a passionate relationship for Buffy!
Terror ensues in Sunnydale when creepy ghouls float into town stealing the residents’ voices including that of Buffy and her friends. Rendered speechless and unable to scream the ghouls cut out their victims’ hearts. Buffy and her friends must figure out how to stop them but first they need to figure out how to communicate. Giles aided by an overhead projector tells the gang the story of The Gentlemen. As with many of the BTVS episodes there is an underlying message for the audience about language and communication. Ironically, Joss Whedon achieves this by filming an episode almost entirely without speech.
Can’t Get Enough Buffy? Here are some Honorable Mentions:
Fool for Love
Surprise and Innocence (2 episodes)
Seeing Red and Villains (2 episodes)