What I consider the best out of the bunch, though, shouldn't come as a surprise, since I'm pretty sure most people agree with me. Even though I've never really understood why Ross and Rachel ever got together - and honestly, her dumping him because of the infamous list was one of the dumbest things I've ever seen - "The One with the Prom Video" gave me kind of a reason to believe it made sense.
The main reason is because it does show how much Ross cares for Rachel. He put himself out there, ready to make her night, and was left holding flowers and feeling like a fool. I totally felt Ross in this episode; I'm harder on myself than anyone else ever could be, and I know that, had I been in his position, I would have felt just as devastated. His very dreams of taking the girl he'd liked for years to the prom were dashed on those stairs as a less worthy asshole swooped in. He had the opportunity to turn in a Nice Guy, but he didn't. Well, not at this point, but that's a whole other issue.
But of course, this also gets me thinking about youthful infatuation. Why did Ross like Rachel in the first place? She didn't seem to know he existed, something that carried on until she discovered via Chandler that he had feelings for her, and he didn't even really know her. He just knew that she was a cheerleader, that she was his sister's friend (another thing I really didn't believe because of how shallow Rachel was, but whatever). It's like how I always wanted to date a jock as a teenager, and when I had the opportunity as an adult, I found that it was not all it was cracked up to be. He wanted me as a trophy girl, constantly dressed to the nines and made up like Barbie. Needless to say, it lasted about three months before I dumped him. It shouldn't have been a surprise, I suppose, kind of like how I knew that Ross and Rachel would not last.
Getting back to the episode, though, this is another example of how well the writers wrote when they had the complexities of the characters to work with. No one except Ross knew the extent of his romantic leanings, and the reveal was genius. Even Monica was moved. Hell, even I wanted them to get together at that point. The magic didn't last for me, because a few episodes later, I was like, "Wait, why are they together again?" but oh well. The writers had me for one episode. Sue me.