Can Someone Please Explain Buffy’s Lasting Appeal To Me?

Wait, before anyone gets mad, that is not a rhetorical question. Having seen only one episode of Buffy The Vampire Slayer and going “sure, yeah, okay, they talk fast, it’s cute” in college, I’m completely mystified by all the people who still bring up Buffy in conversation all the time. And there are a lot of people. Smart people with lives. Many of my friends, in fact. Usually when the subject of Buffy comes up, I nod politely and try to change the subject lest I get reveal my ignorance of the show to what everyone has to admit are its totally insanely rabid fans. I understand both the real cultural (feminism, nerd liberation) and the pop cultural (genre-creating) significance of the show, but could a person just watching Buffy for the first time now actually enjoy it, or did you have to kind of be there? And which episode most perfectly represents the purported best-everness of the show? And really, what could possibly, possibly justify entire academic conferences about Buffy? For real, I’m curious, don’t slay me.