Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 5, Episode 16

The Body (27 Feb. 2001)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Drama | Fantasy
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Ratings: 9.4/10 from 2,298 users  
Reviews: 23 user | 1 critic

Buffy, Dawn, and their friends deal with the aftermath of Joyce's death.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Spike (credit only)
Rupert Giles (as Anthony Stewart Head)
First Paramedic
Stefan Umstead ...
Second Paramedic
911 Operator (voice)


Buffy sees Joyce lying on the couch, calls 911 and unsuccessfully follows emergency procedures. When the paramedics arrive, they realize that Joyce is dead. Buffy calls Giles and goes to the school to tell Dawn. Along the day, the Scooby gang grieves the death of Joyce and sympathizes with Buffy. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Action | Drama | Fantasy


TV-PG | See all certifications »




Release Date:

27 February 2001 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


In the scene where Xander (Nicholas Brendon) punched his hand through the wall, only a shot of Willow's left eye is shown. This is because actress Alyson Hannigan had experienced an allergic reaction to the dust from the plaster on the wall - a reaction that resulted in her right eye swelling badly. Because of this, she had to go to the hospital the next day to get her eye treated. See more »


When the doctor comes to speak with the family, the camera follows Buffy, Dawn and Giles as they go to meet him, and there is a moment at 32:13 as they pass out of frame when you can see a pair of "marks" on the carpet at the bottom left of the picture, one made of white tape and the other of red. Later, when the doctor and Giles leave and the rest of the Scoobies come over to join Buffy and Dawn, Xander hits the white mark and Willow the red one. See more »


Buffy: Was it sudden?
Tara: What?
Buffy: Your mother...
Tara: No. And yes. It's always sudden.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Instead of the regular opening credits, a flashback scene was created that consisted of the whole cast having Christmas dinner at the Summers' house. It was created so as not to have written credits appearing over the dramatic opening scenes. See more »


References The Powerpuff Girls (1998) See more »


Buffy the Vampire Slayer Theme
Written by Nerf Herder
Performed by Brandon K. Verrett
See more »

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User Reviews

The best hour of television ever produced is from a teen vampire fantasy drama ?
29 January 2011 | by (milpitas, california) – See all my reviews

My father passed away not too long ago. I started watching Buffy to pass the time when I visited my mother during a difficult time (it was streaming on Netflix, and I had really enjoyed Firefly). For those that have experienced the loss of a love one, especially a parent, this episode will be a shockingly realistic portrayal of it.

If art is the attempt to perfectly capture an emotion or an idea through a medium (whether it's music, prose, visual, etc.), then it would not be an exaggeration to say that this episode is a masterpiece. If art, and not entertainment, is the measure of quality television then I could, with certainty, say that this is the best hour of television ever produced. It may be the best thing ever filmed.

As a rather critical person, I realize how silly the praise above sounds. I think many people who haven't experienced the loss of a parent won't "get it." But those that have should come away with similar praise.

15 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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