feature-request planned
The answer snippets that show beneath questions in the question list should do more than just extract the first line of Markdown, they should strip it of any markup.
Top Answer
Jack Douglas
We are now (as of 28 Jan 2020) removing leading (and trailing) '#' characters from answer summaries.

As Paul [says](/meta?q=370#a362), "Basic markdown in answer snippets is useful"

The biggest eyesore is the '#' heading markers, which are very common in the first line of an answer, and don't add any value to the answer summary. As of now we are stripping those out (but leaving the rest in).

We thought about removing '>' characters, but that can make the answer summary look misleading. We think answers that start with quoting the question, and answers with reference-style links, both need to be tweaked with an edit to improve the answer summaries.

You may also be interested to know we are now also cheat-rendering reference links:

@@@ answer 715
Answer #2
Paul White
*Basic* [markdown](https://markdown-it.github.io/) in **answer snippets** is useful.

It would be nice if markdown that isn't supported in snippets were suppressed.
Answer #3
## For exhibit **A**

My proposal is that the post snippet for this post would show up as:

> Answer: For exhibit A

Currently a mix and match edition with some markup stripped, others not is presented:


One or two cases is not a big deal, but it quickly becomes noise:

Answer #4
Might this be done in a way that doesn't remove the `#` character from code? It's a common character for some languages in Code Golf (i.e., input for Mathematica), and such answers may be quoted fully in the snippet where the silent deletion would be confusing.

(Edit: Actually, it looks like the code doesn't appear in the summary when  a header comes first, so this is moot. Though maybe ideally the code would appear if it's short.)
Strip Markdown from snippets
Jack Douglas
@xnor thanks for the prompt, I've updated my answer to make it clear that we are only removing the leading (and trailing) '#' characters
Caleb replying to Paul White
I see far more potential for abuse than benefit. Already looking over the question list on or TeX beta site there are a handful of post snippets that are stealing visual focus on account of having bold or code formatting, but they are not really better answers than the others and I think they effectively _hinder_ the ability to skim though answer posts more than they aide it. Even without deliberate abuse, they are visually distracting — and detracting from the point of having snippets to review what answers are there.
Paul White
Something to consider: Not stripping markdown might encourage editors to improve the first line of answers.
Paul White replying to Caleb
Snippets were originally just raw markdown. The present situation is an incremental improvement on that.  
Stripping markdown reliably is probably more than 6-8 minutes work.
There is a reason search engines don't pass anything at all through to snippets even in cases where they could.
@Paul That example seems cool, but I have to wonder how useful it will actually be. I have an idea it will produce more abuse than use. In most cases I think I'd rather people click through to answers than be sent off to some link without even having seen the link in context.