Buffy the Vampire Slayer is truly a one of a kind show, and Buffy Summers is truly a one of a kind Slayer. As the Chosen One, she defied convention, turning her solo mission into a team effort. Her buddies became her comrades in arms. Without them, Buffy would never have been able to battle a hell goddess, conquer the First, or blow up her high school.
The Scooby Gang aren't just friends and and allies; they're family. And every family has their problems. People change. They get evil, they try to kill each other. Twins have affairs. Okay, maybe that last one is from a different show. The point is, at its core, Buffy the Vampire Slayer is about friendship...warts and all.
10 Worst - Buffy & Xander
As much love as there is between them, there's just as much toxicity. For the first year of their friendship, Xander harbors romantic feelings for Buffy. Many people develop crushes on their friends, but Xander behaves as if he has proprietary claim on her. He acts inappropriately jealous when Buffy's relationship with Angel takes off, and expresses pleasure when things go sour. Never mind that Buffy gets her heart ripped out—at least she's single.
Xander develops a love life of his own and for awhile appears to have a pleasantly platonic friendship with Buffy. But when he discovers her tryst with Spike, Xander goes ballistic. It's clear that his perceived ownership over Buffy never went away; he just got better at masking it. Get over yourself, Xander.
9 Best - Anya and Andrew
Some friendships are based on deep connections; others simply happen to be two disparate outcasts thrown together. After her short-lived comeback as a vengeance demon, Anya finds herself at the bottom of the Scooby totem pole. Andrew isn't even an official member, but the gang's official hostage.
As weaker members of Team Good Guy, Anya and Andrew are frequently tasked with soft jobs like medical supply runs. It's on these "missions" that they truly bond. Anya is able to drop her snarky façade and confess her feelings of sheer terror about her mortality. Andrew is just happy that somebody wants to talk to him. Anya doesn't make it through the final battle, but she dies fighting next to a true friend.
8 Worst - Spike & Angel
Spike and Angel may be fantastic characters, but in their evil prime, their bro-y one-upmanship was cringeworthy. Other than their pointy teeth, these two vampires had nothing in common. Spike was a barroom brawler, and Angel was a sadistic showman. The only reason they hung around each other was a shared obsession with Drusilla and the need to constantly outdo one another. Spike killing his first Slayer was an infinitely sweeter victory because it meant gloating to Angel.
Though the two put their differences aside on Angel, on Buffy, they were better off apart. The only person who enjoyed them together was Dru and she's, well, insane.
7 Best - Spike & Joyce
Unlikely pairings are such stuff as television dreams are made on. Spike and Joyce had a deliciously quirky chemistry ever since that fateful night in the Summers living room when Buffy came out as the Slayer. Spike and Joyce never got lattes at the Espresso Pump or auditioned for The Amazing Race together, but they appreciated each other's company.
As a human, Spike was very close with his mother. But after he sired her, she went from mommie dearest to...Mommie Dearest. He's able to find a new mother figure in Joyce, who pampers him with hot chocolate and relationship advice. Upon her death, Spike genuinely wanted to pay his respects. As he put it, "Joyce is the only one of you lot I could stand."
6 Worst - Buffy & Faith
Buffy can sometimes act like a spoiled only child. She also has a tendency to get distracted by anything shiny and new. Faith manages to bring out both of these negative traits. Upon her arrival to Sunnydale, Buffy grows instantly jealous of the alluring net Faith casts over the Scoobies.
Eventually, Buffy and Faith learn to put aside their differences. This means Buffy learning how to "live large" by being an absolute slave to her id. Buffy leaves the Scoobies in the dust in favor of breaking into sporting goods stores with Faith. But while Buffy may be peer-pressured into pilfering a crossbow, she draws the line at covering up a murder. Buffy and Faith veer off on different paths only to reconnect for the show's final battle where it's clear they're better off as colleagues than friends.
5 Best - Buffy & Tara
Some friends are fabulous for going out and painting the town red. Then there are those you turn to in a crisis. At the beginning of her relationship with Willow, Tara seemed one degree removed from the Scoobies. She's a shy loner type, but there's something unmistakably soulful about her. Even though they're not close, Buffy stands up for Tara to the draconian Maclay clan. It's that moment Tara realizes she's a full-fledged Scooby and has a lifelong friend in Buffy.
Upon her resurrection, Buffy goes on a path of self-destruction. She feels totally alienated from her friends and drowns her sorrows in a toxic sexual relationship with Spike. The only person who Buffy feels she can turn to is Tara, the most non-judgmental human in the world. A heart-to-heart with her beats a night out at the Bronze, hands down.
4 Worst - Willow & Amy
After Amy turned herself into a perma-rat, it kind of seemed like restoring her to human form was low on Willow's priority list. And guess what? Nobody minded. Amy was a mischievous nuisance and the Buffyverse was better off without her.
But freshly dumped and lonely, Willow de-rats Amy and things just devolve from there. Forget being an enabler. When it comes to Willow's magic addiction, Amy is an enforcer. She gets Willow involved with creepy Rack, the magic dealer. Later, Amy forces magic into Willow after she's trying to get clean. Thankfully, Buffy is there to give Amy a much-needed threatening. We know that the Slayer isn't supposed to kill humans but in this instance, we'd hardly rat Buffy out.
3 Best - Xander & Willow
This is an example of how to be infatuated with a friend without being a jerk. Willow quietly pines for Xander for years, mopes when he never notices, until they finally kiss when they're both dating other people. They hurt their partners, but move on. Is that so hard?!
Seriously, throughout their ups and downs, Xander and Willow always have each other's backs. When Willow goes dark, it's Xander's rock-solid love for her that literally saves the world. Let's be clear—the love of Willow's life was shot dead right in front of her. That's a pretty deep rage pit to climb out of. But with a friendship like Xander and Willow's, hearts can be mended, even if yellow crayons cannot.
2 Worst - The Trio
A group of misfits team up to take over Sunnydale. This sounds like the premise of a semi-funny filler episode...not an entire seasonal arc. True, the Trio had their funny moments like the heated James Bond debate—"Timothy Dalton should get an Oscar and beat Sean Connery over the head with it!"—but ultimately, they were no good, for the show or each other.
Their descent to real darkness was as abrupt as it was disturbing. The concept the show tries to foist on the viewer is that Warren is bad news, where Jonathan and Andrew exist in varying levels of a moral gray area. But, really how could the latter two not realize that enchanting a woman to be their "sex bunny" is wrong? Then there's Andrew's obvious attraction to Warren that is only alluded to, but never explored. Dark Willow may have done a lot of bad things, but flaying Warren alive and disbanding the Trio ain't one of them.
1 Best - Buffy & Willow
From stopping the apocalypse(s) to selecting college courses, these two BFFs have been through it all. They've drifted apart, but always find their way back to each other. Buffy may be the Slayer, but when it comes to emotional support, she needs her Willow. Willow is the first person Buffy runs to after Faith kills a man; she cries in Willow's lap after her breakup with Angel.
Buffy also inspires Willow to stand up for herself and carpe diem. Had it not been for Buffy, Willow may never have dated Oz or tried her hand at witchcraft. They protect each other from monsters and ne'er-do-well suitors alike. Willow tells Riley that if he hurts Buffy, she'll "beat him to death with a shovel." Spoken like a true bestie.