There is no denying that I am a TV addict. I have watched dozens and dozens of shows from start to finish, often binge-watching for hours at a time. Buffy the Vampire Slayer is my favorite series of all time. There are other shows I watch religiously and get so invested in that it hurts – Star Trek, Supernatural, Grey’s Anatomy, Merlin, Game of Thrones (trust me, the list is shameful). But it always come back to Buffy.

I didn’t actually start watching until after Buffy had already ended. I found Angel first (in its final season) and worked my way slightly backwards. Before DVR, before instant streaming, I waited patiently for Netflix to send me each disc, season by season. After watching the whole series, I saved little by little to buy the box sets one by one. I have watched this series front to back at least half a dozen times, not to mention the favorites that I have watched over and over when I’m feeling nostalgic.

Too many lists exist that try to rank the best or worst of Buffy – I have no desire to add another. But I thought it might be fun to share the episodes that I think are the most fun to rewatch when you are craving a reminder of why this show is one of the best. This doesn’t mean the most well-written or dramatic, with the most plot twists or sob-inducing scenarios. These are just episodes that are enjoyable, which I feel stand up to multiple viewings. There is always a joke you didn’t catch or a detail you didn’t notice – I’m never bored no matter how many times I watch these. They are also simply in chronological order, with no attempt to judge one over the other in any way. To me, this show is perfect in its entirety – hook, line, and sinker.

All of the GIFs were made by me for this article, feel free to do anything with them that you like. You are welcome to credit me, but I don’t mind at all if you don’t. I will also admit to having my biases just like anyone else, which influence this list. I love Spike and Angel, while I the-opposite of love Xander and Dawn. I regret nothing, but my favorites are often Spike-heavy and you will never see a Xander-centric episode anywhere. Please enjoy and I would love to talk to you in the comments about how much you also love Buffy, because why would you be reading this otherwise?

By the way, I know that “Once More, With Feeling” isn’t on here, but that’s just too easy, isn’t it? We all love it forever and always, no arguments.

1. ‘School Hard’ (season 2, episode 3)

I’m a sucker for Spike, bad or slightly less bad. So the first appearance of William the Bloody had to kick off this list. And with Spike comes my favorite unhinged vamp, the deadly and demure Drusilla. The chemistry between James Marsters and Juliet Landau is mouthwateringly macabre and one of my favorites in the entire Whedonverse. Buffy tries to fend off Principal Snyder at Parents’ Night, Spike has a touching reunion with his Yoda, and even Joyce kicks some ass. The episode wraps up with Spike turning the Anointed One into a crispy critter and promising less ritual and more fun.

2. ‘Halloween’ (season 2, episode 6)

And so begins a wonderful tradition of everything going tits up on Halloween. Ethan Rayne blows into town with a bag of tricks and his trademark cocky attitude. This is a bad guy who everyone loves to hate and who never actually seems to get ahead, always hightailing it out of town by the skin of his teeth. I never fail to chuckle at a helpless Buffy ranting about low apparel or Cordelia sassing around in her catsuit. Ethan isn’t the only character we get our first glimpse of in this episode – keep your eyes open for the late Larry and the kaleidoscope coif of Seth Green as Oz.

3. ‘What’s My Line’ (season 2, episodes 9 & 10)

Fine, picking a two-parter is cheating. But only this once, I swear. The Order of Taraka trying to kill everyone really gets in the way of ice skating, job fairs, and finding something in the berry family. But somehow Angel still finds the time to be shirtless and covered in sexy wounds, not to mention Willow and Oz finally connecting in an explosion of animal crackers and cute. I also cannot help but love Kendra, iffy accent and all. Watching her nerd out with Giles while Buffy pouts is a scene to treasure. Oh, and Cordelia makes out with Xander.

4. ‘Faith, Hope & Trick’ (season 3, episode 3)

At this point in the list, I’m realizing that I may be a sucker for first appearance episodes. Enter one of Buffy’s most beloved alumni – Faith. I’m also a sucker for Mr. Trick, because Sunnydale really isn’t a haven for the brothers. Faith brings with her a skanky psycho energy I can’t help but find endearing. Combine it with her penchant for brutal honesty and an immunity to shame, and it’s a recipe for hilarity. And Buffy isn’t fooling anyone with that nonfat yogurt line.

5. ‘Band Candy’ (season 3, episode 6)

This is definitely one of the episodes I have rewatched the most. There are few things in this life more amusing than a smoking, cursing, lady-killing Giles. I don’t actually have an overwhelming love for Ethan Rayne, but I can’t deny that his visits coincide with some of the funniest situations the gang ever gets tangled up in. I do, as it happens, have an overwhelming love for Joyce, and her reversion to ditzy teenager in this episode is nothing short of priceless. And bravo to Jane Espenson for making Principal Snyder genuinely likable in this episode. Summers really does drive like a spaz.

Check in next week for part two!

20 Frodo and Bilbo Baggins quotes to sweep you off your feet

Alive or dead dragons, I wouldn't dare laugh at either.

11:30 am EDT, September 22, 2016

It’s Hobbit Day, aka Frodo and Bilbo Baggins’ birthday! To celebrate, we’ve got the wittiest, wisest, and best Frodo and Bilbo quotes from all four books.

Best Frodo and Bilbo quotes:

  1. “We are plain quiet folk and have no use for adventures. Nasty disturbing uncomfortable things! Make you late for dinner! I can’t think what anybody sees in them.”
    – Bilbo, The Hobbit, An Unexpected Party
  2. Frodo: “‘Frodo wouldn’t have got far without Sam, would he, dad?'”
    Sam: “Now, Mr. Frodo, you shouldn’t make fun. I was serious.”
    Frodo: “So was I.”
    – Frodo and Sam, The Two Towers, The Stairs of Cirith Ungol
  3. “Victory after all, I suppose! Well, it seems a very gloomy business.”
    – Bilbo, The Hobbit, The Return Journey
  4. frodo-baggins-sam-quotes

  5. “I am glad you are here with me. Here at the end of all things, Sam.”
    – Frodo, The Return of the King, Mount Doom
  6. “Farewell, King under the Mountain! This is a bitter adventure, if it must end so; and not a mountain of gold can amend it. Yet I am glad that I have shared in your perils – that has been more than any Baggins deserves.”
    – Bilbo, The Hobbit, The Return Journey
  7. “Short cuts make delays, but inns make longer ones.”
    – Frodo, The Fellowship of the Ring, A Short Cut to Mushrooms
  8. “I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.”
    – Bilbo, The Fellowship of the Ring, A Long Expected Party
  9. “There is no real going back. Though I may come to the Shire it will not seem the same; for I shall not be the same. I am wounded with knife, sting, and tooth, and a long burden. Where shall I find rest?”
    – Frodo, The Return of the King, Homeward Bound
  10. the-hobbit-bilbo-baggins-quotes-dragons

Read full article

It’s Hobbit Day, aka Frodo and Bilbo Baggins’ birthday! To celebrate, we’ve got the wittiest, wisest, and best Frodo and Bilbo quotes from all four books.

Best Frodo and Bilbo quotes:

  1. “We are plain quiet folk and have no use for adventures. Nasty disturbing uncomfortable things! Make you late for dinner! I can’t think what anybody sees in them.”
    – Bilbo, The Hobbit, An Unexpected Party
  2. Frodo: “‘Frodo wouldn’t have got far without Sam, would he, dad?'”
    Sam: “Now, Mr. Frodo, you shouldn’t make fun. I was serious.”
    Frodo: “So was I.”
    – Frodo and Sam, The Two Towers, The Stairs of Cirith Ungol
  3. “Victory after all, I suppose! Well, it seems a very gloomy business.”
    – Bilbo, The Hobbit, The Return Journey
  4. frodo-baggins-sam-quotes

  5. “I am glad you are here with me. Here at the end of all things, Sam.”
    – Frodo, The Return of the King, Mount Doom
  6. “Farewell, King under the Mountain! This is a bitter adventure, if it must end so; and not a mountain of gold can amend it. Yet I am glad that I have shared in your perils – that has been more than any Baggins deserves.”
    – Bilbo, The Hobbit, The Return Journey
  7. “Short cuts make delays, but inns make longer ones.”
    – Frodo, The Fellowship of the Ring, A Short Cut to Mushrooms
  8. “I don’t know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.”
    – Bilbo, The Fellowship of the Ring, A Long Expected Party
  9. “There is no real going back. Though I may come to the Shire it will not seem the same; for I shall not be the same. I am wounded with knife, sting, and tooth, and a long burden. Where shall I find rest?”
    – Frodo, The Return of the King, Homeward Bound
  10. the-hobbit-bilbo-baggins-quotes-dragons

  11. “Never laugh at live dragons, Bilbo you fool!”
    – Bilbo to himself, The Hobbit, Inside Information
  12. “Yes, you have seen a thing or two since you last peeped out of a looking-glass.”
    – Frodo to himself, The Fellowship of the Ring, Many Meetings
  13. “Bother burgling and everything to do with it! I wish I was at home in my nice hole by the fire, with the kettle just beginning to sing!”
    – Bilbo, The Hobbit, Roast Mutton
  14. “It is useless to meet revenge with revenge: it will heal nothing.”
    – Frodo, The Return of the King, The Scouring of the Shire
  15. “‘It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out of your door,” he used to say. ‘You step into the Road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there is no telling where you might be swept off to.'”
    – Frodo quoting Bilbo, The Fellowship of the Ring, Three is Company
  16. lotr-frodo-baggins-quotes-i-will-take-the-ring

  17. “I will take the Ring, though I do not know the way.”
    – Frodo, The Fellowship of the Ring, The Council of Elrond
  18. “So comes snow after fire, and even dragons have their ending!”
    – Bilbo, The Hobbit, The Return Journey
  19. “I can manage it. I must.”
    – Frodo, The Return of the King, Mount Doom
  20. “Sorry! I don’t want any adventures, thank you. Not today. Good morning! But please come to tea – any time you like! Why not tomorrow? Come tomorrow! Good-bye!”
    – Bilbo, The Hobbit, An Unexpected Party
  21. “It must often be so, Sam, when things are in danger: some one has to give them up, lose them, so that others may keep them.”
    – Frodo, The Return of the King, The Grey Havens
  22. bilbo-baggins-quotes-wander-are-lost

  23. “All that is gold does not glitter,
    Not all those who wander are lost.”
    – Bilbo, The Fellowship of the Ring, Strider
  24. “I should like to leave the Shire, if I could – though there have been times when I thought the inhabitants too stupid and dull for words, and have felt that an earthquake or an invasion of dragons might be good for them. But I don’t feel like that now. I feel that as long as the Shire lies behind, safe and comfortable, I shall find wandering more bearable: I shall know that somewhere there is a firm foothold, even if my feet cannot stand there again.”
    – Frodo, The Fellowship of the Ring, The Shadow of the Past

Tell us your favorite Frodo and Bilbo quotes in the comments!

With one reason for every inning of America’s pastime, here’s why you’ve got to watch Pitch — the story of Ginny Baker, the first female major league baseball player.

1. Ginny is a badass

It sounds tropey, but it’s true. Kylie Bunbury’s Ginny Baker is everything you could want in such a singular protagonist. Confident and strong, yet vulnerable in her impassivity, Ginny’s physical and emotional capabilities are quickly established — and just as quickly challenged.

Ginny humanizes the superhuman aura that surrounds high-level athletes, while never losing the essential strength that makes her a great ballplayer, and a badass character.

Read full article

With one reason for every inning of America’s pastime, here’s why you’ve got to watch Pitch — the story of Ginny Baker, the first female major league baseball player.

1. Ginny is a badass

It sounds tropey, but it’s true. Kylie Bunbury’s Ginny Baker is everything you could want in such a singular protagonist. Confident and strong, yet vulnerable in her impassivity, Ginny’s physical and emotional capabilities are quickly established — and just as quickly challenged.

Ginny humanizes the superhuman aura that surrounds high-level athletes, while never losing the essential strength that makes her a great ballplayer, and a badass character.

2. It’s a baseball TV show!

While there have been a handful of baseball-related television shows in the past (and CBS tried to launch a series based on A League of Their Own back in 1993), the sport has mostly been colonized by film. But baseball is its own long-form story, stretching out almost daily for 162 games a year. A week-by-week look into the evolving narrative of a baseball season just screams TV, and Pitch is ready to deliver.

3. Ginny isn’t a ‘smurfette’

Ginny Baker steps into a world so thoroughly dominated by men that it would have been easy to cast her as the only significant female in the series. Pitch deftly avoids that trap, supporting Ginny with her firecracker agent Amelia Slater (Ali Larter) and a strong friendship with her teammate’s wife Evelyn (Meagan Holder). Pitch isn’t just about girl power, but it’s got plenty to offer.

4. It’s an inside look at professional sports

It’s tempting, as fans, to reduce the sport we love to what happens on the field, restricting the narrative to the winners (and losers), but Pitch dives into the business around baseball, from the vise-like pressure of media attention to the front office politics that are so often shrouded in mystery.

Slick general manager Oscar Arguella (Mark Consuelos) covers the ground between team manager Al Luongo (Dan Lauria) and the Padre’s owner, while players carefully observe the shifting values of their team. Winning, Pitch makes clear, is as much a product of what happens off the diamond as on it.

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5. It’s got drama

Pitch does more than use baseball as a backdrop (this isn’t Moneyball writ small), but it’s not just concerned with balls, bats, and cleats. Professionalism only goes so far where major social change is concerned, and the Padres clubhouse quickly becomes a source of tension between Ginny and many of her teammates. That’s in addition to the family drama Ginny brings with her — which, trust us, is a lot more intense than it seems.

6. The music is amazing

Forget “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.” Opening with a pulse-pounding synth violin, the music of Pitch takes off into a realm of unique, intense, and captivating tunes. Even if Ginny’s badassery doesn’t inspire you to get off your couch, the show’s music just might.

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7. It’s really diverse!

Pitch boasts a diverse cast of characters, reflecting the reality of modern baseball, as well as… well, reality. Ginny herself is African-American, and half the main cast is made up of people of color. It doesn’t seem like race will be a central subject in Pitch, but the show’s makeup is a valuable addition to a television landscape that values representation.

8. It’s deeply psychological

For a show about sports, and therefore, about physical bodies, Pitch takes its time to consider what goes on inside the heads of athletes under pressure. From the fishbowl scrutiny of a stadium full of fans, to the grueling mental toll of becoming the best, Pitch cares as much about what’s going on inside Ginny’s head as what’s going on with her arm.

9. ‘Pitch’ lets us imagine, “What if?”

As it stands today, Pitch is not a realistic series. There are little to no avenues for women to grow in professional baseball; though girls can play Little League, those who wish to pursue the sport are usually shunted to softball.

But Pitch invites us to imagine an unrestricted future for women in baseball. What if a girl had enough talent and grit to make it? What if the system let her through? What if she used finesse instead to succeed in a sport of brute strength?

It’s not a reality yet. But maybe someday life will imitate this truly groundbreaking art.

Pitch premieres tonight at 9:00 p.m. on Fox.

What are you excited to see in ‘Pitch’?

Finally, J.K. Rowling is here to give you the definitive answer to the age old Harry Potter fan question: What is your Patronus?

We got a Hogwarts House quiz. Then we got another Hogwarts House quiz. Then we found our Ilvermorny house, and now — at last — J.K. Rowling’s official Patronus quiz is live on Pottermore.

Note that the quiz parameters are very strictly defined: The quiz itself is timed, and you can only take it once (per account). So make sure you’re ready before you start! Good luck.

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Finally, J.K. Rowling is here to give you the definitive answer to the age old Harry Potter fan question: What is your Patronus?

We got a Hogwarts House quiz. Then we got another Hogwarts House quiz. Then we found our Ilvermorny house, and now — at last — J.K. Rowling’s official Patronus quiz is live on Pottermore.

Note that the quiz parameters are very strictly defined: The quiz itself is timed, and you can only take it once (per account). So make sure you’re ready before you start! Good luck.

When J.K. Rowling took the test a while back, her answer was a pine marten. I actually got this result as well! But apparently, Jo is allowed to take the quiz multiple times (which, you know, fair enough, she did make up this quiz + everything else we’re obsessing about), and this time she got a heron. Anyone else get a heron like Jo?

The quiz results seem to vary greatly. We’re not sure exactly how many different results there are, but other fans are reporting a wide variety of animals lynxes, chow dogs, wildcats, white and chestnut stallions, dolphins, leopards, St Bernard dogs, orangutans, tortoiseshell cats, foxes, weasels… you name it, this quiz has it! Unfortunately Pottermore doesn’t give any information about what these animals represent, though we are to imagine they somehow connect to our happiest memories.

In a press release, Pottermore says there’s more to come about “[the Patronus spell] and its outcomes.” In addition, they’ve confirmed there are magical creatures in the quiz, but they’re rare.

The quiz is very fun, and different from anything else we’ve tried on Pottermore so far. Instead of simply answering questions it’s all very intuitive, as you journey through a forest, and encouraging words (that we like to imagine are from Professor Lupin) about your progress in casting the spell.

Some people will find that the process is relatively straightforward, while others might be prompted to answer a few more questions before they get their final result.

Take the quiz right now, and come back here to share your results in the comments!

What is a Patronus?

In the Harry Potter series, the Patronus is a wispy creature that emerges from a witch or wizard’s wand when they cast the “Expecto Patronum” charm.

The creature serves as a manifestation of your happiest memory, and is summoned to ward off evil forces. It’s very hard to produce a Patronus, and it was therefore very remarkable when Harry learned to do it in his third year, when he used it to save Sirius Black from the Dementors.

Harry Potter’s Patronus is a stag, which was his father James’ Animagus form (the animal he turned into when he transformed). Lily Evans’ Patronus was a doe, which fit perfectly with James’ stag — but as Severus Snape loved Lily, too, his Patronus was also a doe.

In fifth year, Harry taught the Patronus charm to the members of Dumbledore’s Army. Hermione’s was an otter, Ron’s was a Jack Russell terrier, Ginny’s was a horse, Luna’s was a hare, and Cho’s was a swan. Clearly, there are as many different results to the Patronus quiz as there are variations of the charm in the Wizarding World.

Not satisfied with your quiz result?

If J.K. Rowling’s own Patronus quiz didn’t give you the answer you wanted, well… that’s canon for you, right? But we’ve still got a fun alternative: Find out which of these bizarre creatures is your true Patronus, and compare the results!