Mr. Bill George Presents

Crowning Moments Of Awesome

In Film, Literature, Television on August 20, 2009 at 12:44 AM

As defined by the website www.tvtropes.org, a Crowning Moment of Awesome is best described as:

“The moment when a fictional character does something for which they will be remembered forever, winning for them the eternal loyalty of fans.”

And it was at this website that I found myself escaping from my hours of boredom, looking up what I deemed to be Crowning Moments of Awesome and seeing if they were indeed cataloged by what I would declare as the most comprehensive compendium of such moments.

As I searched through the website and was reminded of the various CMOA that I have experienced throughout my years as a reader/movie-watcher/tv-gazer, I realized that these instances really make or break a movie/book/show for me. It’s these small instances of, for lack of a better word, awesomeness, that have made the works that they are a part of so memorable in my mind.

Off the top of my head one example that comes to mind is Gladiator, when Russel Crowe removes his helmet and reveals that he is still very much alive to Commodus’ dismay and declares:

“My name is Maximus Decimus Meridius, commander of the Armies of the North, General of the Felix Legions, loyal servant to the true emperor, Marcus Aurelius. Father to a murdered son, husband to a murdered wife. And I will have my vengeance, in this life or the next.”

Just re-reading this quote gave me a shiver accompanied by fleeting goose bumps. It is one of those movie moments that will stay strong in my head, even as most of the other parts of the movie fall into obscurity.

Another legendary moment is in The Princess Bride when Inigo Montoya finally faces the six-fingered man, repeating the lines, “Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya, you killed my father, prepare to die.” A moment that will be forever rise above other scenes, bronzed in an awesome glory.

Sometimes, however, a movie cannot elicit any memories of a CMOA. Some movies have but a few, some might have multitudes,  and some movies could be said just to be one giant CMOA coalesced from many smaller CMOA, such as the 300 holding strong against their titanic Persian foe.  After reading this article and looking through the numerous examples, I discover that a well placed CMOA is the #1 thing I look for in a movie. The first half of a movie can be shit for all I care as long as it somehow can pull a glorified CMOA from its ass, obliterating all the other detritus from memory.

My favorite CMOA of all time would have to be the end of the last episode from the anime series “Cowboy Bebop” (one of the few anime shows that I can stand to watch). The character “Spike Spiegel,” whom has illustrated various amounts of badassery throughout the series and has become one of my top 5 fictional characters, ends the series with such an amazing “bang” that I will never tire of watching the episode again and again. I do not want to divulge what specifically it is that he does due to the nominal chance of ruining it for someone who might plan to watch it someday, but I can say that it is indeed a Crowning Moment of Awesome.

What do the readers out there think? What are your favorite CMOA exhibited by beloved characters or showcased in your favorite movies?

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  1. I’m sure I can think of a million others and I will after I write this, but this is the first that comes to mind so I guess it’s the one:

    [Spoiler Alert]

    During M. Night Shyamalan’s ‘Unbreakable’ there is a low shot of Bruce Willis as he slowly rises to his feet after being helped out of the pool he was just drowning in. The camera rises up with him as he stands straight up and the music swells as he latches onto to the orangeman and strangles the life out of him in the name of justice. It’s James Newton Howard’s score, and the continuous shot, that really make the scene and it gets me every damn time.

  2. I one hundred percent agree on the Cowboy Bebop CMOA, and Bill just made me want to watch Unbreakable again. There are so many great CMOA’s out there! My all time favorite, even though it’s an obvious one is Darth Vader making the decision to save Luke and destroy the Emperor. But that one is obvious, ah well. I’m sure I’ll think of others.

  3. OK what about the end of back to the future I when marty is playin guitar at the school dance, and his picture starts to fade, and he is starting to face, and then George McFly finally gets some ballz and punches that guy in the face and dances with Lorraine and then Marty gets his energy back EARTHHHH ANGELLLL EARTH ANGEELLLLL. that’s a good part.

    • wooooooow!!.. un altro gioco scemo sul wii!! ne serviva prrpoio un altro vista l’estrema carenza.. magari saranno addirittura capaci di farci una edizione speciale con tanto di blob di pezza ( o qualunque cosa sia quella cosa che il ragazzino si porta dietro..)ma poi, perche fermarsi al pupazzetto? quando si pu benissimo inserirci anche un bel dvd con il make-up del gioco!!, 3 ore di video sulle tragiche esperienze adolescenziali degli sviluppatori, e su come abbiano fatto ad incontrarsi e a partorire un’idea cosi malsana!..dai dai, che se va tutto come non deve andare a natale ci fanno il film.

  4. ew please fix my typos – ange

    • oddio, forse una mia impressione (peraltro lgatea agli ultimi screenshots, il che lascia il tempo che trova) ma mi sembra che il dettaglio grafico sia leggermente sceso.le strutture poligonali degli ambienti sembrano un po’ pi spigolose rispetto agli screens rilasciati qualche mese fa e ho l’impressione che sar presente un po’ di aliasing.se, tuttavia, dovesse rimanere fluido come nei video mostrati, credo che anche i “difetti” temuti (ma, ribadisco, frutto di un’impressione) non dovrebbero incidere sull’esperienza visiva e ludica.per il resto i nemici sembrano ancora favolosi e i giochi di luce eccellenti ma questa sembra sia essere il vero punto di forza del wii). [anche della ps2 si disse che era assolutamente inferiore alle piattaforme nintendo e microsoft ma poi, a causa della massiccia diffusione, le softwarehouse dovettero impegnarsi a fondo per spremere ogni singola capacit dell’emotion engine per presentare (a fronte di una concorrenza sempre pi agguerrita) prodotti cosmeticamente pi soddisfacenti appianando il gap con l’xbox e il gamecube (gli ultimi giochi per ps2 non hanno nulla da invidiare a quelli che girano sulle altre console).la situazione attuale del wii non diversa: si imposto sul mercato, ora si imporr anche come piattaforma di riferimento; il problema sar per gli utenti sony e microsoft che “subiranno” giochi multipiattaforma che sfrutteranno solo in parte le potenzialit delle loro macchine.prima con ps2, ora wii… sar che sono tifoso del napoli ma se non soffro non mi diverto.]

  5. I would have to say that the part in the matrix where neo stops the bullets and realizes that he is the one has to be a CMOA.

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