So, season 2 has some crucial plot and character arcs; and there are some excellent one-offs that I might want to include. Right now, my list of necessary episodes includes
- Surprise and Innocence (13 and 14)--all about Buffy and Angel
- Phases (15)--Oz goodness
- Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered (16)--a fun episode
- Passion (17)--Giles goodness
- Becoming, Part One and Two (21 and 22)
(2: Season 1, Episodes 6 (The Pack) and 9 (Puppet Show)
12: Season 2, Episodes 3 (School Hard), 6 (Halloween), 9 and 10 (What's My Line, Part 1 and 2), 11 (Ted), 13 (Surprise), 14 (Innocence), 15 (Phases), 16 (Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered), 17 (Passion), 21 and 22 (Becoming, Part 1 and 2))
... 14 episodes total. I do like the one-offs "Bad Eggs" and "Go Fish" and even "I Only Have Eyes For You" (with a young John Hawkes!), but at 14 episodes, my playlist is beginning to show a little bloat. I think I'll keep "Ted" in the list rather than swap out one of the other one-offs because, if I'm prepping this list for my girlfriend, I think she'd like John Ritter.
Now here's my second confession of the day: I'm bored by the fight scenes in Buffy--they may be well choreographed but they don't always have much besides spectacle going for them. Rarely do they examine character or make jokes; mostly it's just "there's a blonde girl who vaguely looks like Buffy from far away doing some roundhouse kicks."
A final note: because the episodes are thematically organized, it may be easy to turn them into afterschool specials. For instance, "Go Fish" clearly contains a lesson about the dangers of steroids. Some of these little lessons may be past their sell-by-date for certain audiences. (If I was going to take steroids, it would've been during my illustrious fencing career in college. Though the idea of a steroidally-jacked fencer is sketch-comedy worthy.) It's still a good episode, but might cause a little eye-rolling as they hammer the lesson home.