‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ 20th Anniversary: 20 Genre Show Producers Pay Tribute

Twenty years ago today, Joss Whedon’s Buffy the Vampire Slayer debuted on The WB giving TV fans a strong, smart, funny teenage heroine to root for. It also gave current and future TV writers something to aspire to.

Related: ‘Buffy’ Turns 20: Ken Tucker Looks Back on the Great First Episode

Over the last month, while Yahoo TV polled executive producers of current sci-fi/fantasy genre series for our “Why Genre Shows Matter” survey via email and by phone, we also asked them, if they were fans of Buffy, to name a moment, episode, or arc that encapsulates why. “‘The Body,’ in which Buffy’s mother died and there wasn’t a single note of music,” wrote Grimm EP David Greenwalt, who worked on the show before he and Whedon co-created the spinoff, Angel. “Greatest arc was when Buffy and Angel finally slept together and he turned evil, and treated her like so many men have treated women from time immemorial.”

No one’s going to argue with that assessment. But these 19 producers were happy to add to it.

Related: ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ 20th Anniversary: Joss Whedon Looks Back — And Forward