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August 21, 2014

Wanted: Buffy/Angel episode(s) to watch

by Jason Hughes, posted Jun 25th 2008 8:04PM
Buffy and AngelOkay, I'm a fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel, but not a normal one. I've read all the comic books for both properties and seen the original movie that launched the phenomenon about three times over the years. And yet, for some reason I've never seen a full episode of either show.

When Buffy first came out, I lived in a city that didn't have The WB. And by the time it was available to me I was already several years behind, and I hate coming into the middle of something. Then, for whatever reason, it has remained on my "to do" list over the years.

So where does that leave me for the Retro Squad Buffy/Angel week? I want to participate, but in a way I'm a newbie to the show. So how about you guys tell me a good episode to immerse myself into the world of the Buffy-verse? In fact, maybe one from each show? I'm hearing from the Squad that 'Hush' is a good candidate.

This should be fun, as it's kind of weird reading the new stuff as they come out in comics while only having the vaguest idea of what went on in the original series. I'll get to see how it all began (well, I saw that I guess with the movie but you know what I mean!) It'll be like, "Hey, that Dawn kid isn't nearly as tall as she is in the comics" and "Isn't Los Angeles supposed to be in hell?"

A "done in one" episode might be best, or some pivotal juncture that doesn't require having seen sixty-two priors to keep up. Fill up the comments with what you think is a good one to introduce someone to the series and I'll have my people contact your people to set up a time we can all sit down together and spend some quality time with "The Slayer."

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Tim

I'm sure I'm chiming in late after everyone else is, but better late than never.

Honestly, the storylines in Buffy and Angel (more Buffy, though) are so self-referential that you really should start watching from the very first episode of the first season. By the second season, most of the characters are very well established and storylines are moving forward already.

However, the episode that got me started on watching the series the 14th episode of the second season: "Innocence". Bazooka'ed Buffy is not easily forgotten.

July 06 2008 at 7:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Tim's comment
Tim

I'd be curious to see where you decide to start, by the way.

July 06 2008 at 7:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
LizB

One episode that I love and is pretty good as a stand alone is Earshot. It doesn't relate much to the season story as a whole but has all the elements that I love about Buffy. It's got some great humor and quirkiness. I think it is perfect for your purposes.

June 30 2008 at 10:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Wendy

Agreen with some of the folks here that you should watch from the beginning. This is not CSI or Law & Order.

June 27 2008 at 2:53 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Bodarim

let's not forget about the best episode evar:

The Zeppo

June 26 2008 at 10:46 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
missbanshee

I'm chiming in for starting from the beginning. Sure you get some clunkers, but the wide-eyed innocence of the first season and the character development that follows makes the darkness of the ensuing seasons more palpable. I mean, part of what makes "Once More With Feeling" or "The Body" so great is seeing where the characters have been, and where they have gone throughout the run of the show. It's less powerful with "Angel," so I'll say "Smile Time" just because it is so freaking hilarious.

June 26 2008 at 9:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
StillBash

It's funny how people say that you can watch single episodes.

Of course you can - and you won't miss anything.

But this is like saying "I tasted a seven course menu at the top rated restaurant in the world" while having to admit it was only course number three and that it was still THAT good.

How can you say you really enjoyed that while eating the cheese without having the bread afterwards and the right wine with it? It all tastes totally different than if you ate in the order the chef conceived the seven course plan, for all the food's tastes complement each other.

So go ahead and taste your fish, eat the shrimp and sample the cheese but please later on don't come and tell me that you tasted it and fully understood how good it really is.

June 26 2008 at 6:35 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
MAtteo

You want one ep per show, my suggestion is a two-partner crossover.
Fool For Love (5x07) and Angel's 2x07 Darla.
i think you can watch them even as a fresh start cause the're mainly flashbacks and carachter defyning.

June 26 2008 at 5:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
MAtteo

You want one ep per show, my suggestion is a two-partner crossover.
Fool For Love (5x07) and Angel's 2x07 Darla.
i think you can watch them even as a fresh start cause the're mainly flashbacks and carachter defyning.

June 26 2008 at 5:24 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Anthony V

Doppelgangland. best. episode. ever.

June 26 2008 at 1:19 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
gmmr

I had missed out on the BUFFY experience the first time around. This Spring I tackled all 7 seasons is just under 2 months and I was NOT disappointed. It's simply an amazing show, and although I may not have been a fan from the start, the BUFFYverse is now part of my TV lexicon.

That being said, I'm with the others that say it's best to watch them in order. But if you are not going to, my personal recommendation is HUSH. It's a truly original hour of television that had me floored. Just spectacular.

HUSH is my second favorite episode of BUFFY after the popular ONCE MORE WITH FEELING. But I don't think OMWF is the best episode to start with. It's only that can't be truly appreciated without having some relevant context for characters and their situations. But once you have that history, I triple dog dare you NOT to be singing along with the tune.

Long rant, but having recently gone through the BUFFY experience I wanted to pass along my two cents.

June 26 2008 at 12:53 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to gmmr's comment
Worm23

hmm, isn't it a bit weird that the most suggested episode is the episode where nobody talks ;)

It's definitely an amazing unique episode but I think it should be an episode where you can appreciate the great dialogue.

Doppelgangland is really a great one.
...this is really difficult. I would have loved to name some episodes from season 6 or 7, but I don't think that one can really appreciate these episodes without knowing what's going on.

So if you want to see really exceptional episode go with Hush, Once More with Feeling or The Body. If you want a great example of the rest of the Series I would chose something like Doppelgangland.

June 26 2008 at 4:08 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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