Very Moving TV Moments
(In no particular order) HUGE SPOILERS!!!! RIGHT FROM NUMBER 1!!!
1. Will’s Father Leaves Again in “Papa’s Got a Brand New Excuse”
(Fresh Prince of Bel-Air)
Yep, get’s me every time. This is a selection that is sure to be on many lists, especially those that grew up in the ’90s!
The fact that this one comes from a comedy (and a generally funny and likeable one at that) makes it even more impressive. And a show that can be quite ‘screwball’ and use heightened comedy styles. Although in fairness, Fresh Prince of Bel-air had good form throughout its run for tackling some important subjects and dealing with them in a down-to-earth relatable way.
But the episode where Will’s Dad lets him down yet again is one of, if not, the most, moving moments in the whole shows run.
The scene is so effective thanks to the realistic, honest and heartfelt performance from Will and James, and in many ways is made even better by their improvisations. I highly recommend viewing the video below which will add some nice context to this now legendary moving TV moment:
Will on the famous scene:
2. Pretty Much The Whole Episode! “The Quarterback”
So some episodes have very moving moments because of where the story leads the show’s characters. But occasionally an episode is very moving because of real-life events and this Season 5 episode 3 offering is one such example.
Tragically, Cory Monteith died at the age of just 31 in 2013. The actor had played the role of Finn since the shows start in 2009. I believe there was much talk at the time over if Glee should continue or not after Corey’s death, ultimately they decided to continue. However, they made sure throughout the rest of the shows run, the character of Finn and of course the actor who played him were never forgotten.
The Quarterback is dedicated to Finn in TV land and Cory in real life. Because of this, the characters are not just saying goodbye to their friend, but the cast is saying goodbye to their friend, and unsurprisingly it carries a big emotional punch. And the performances, both the singing and acting, are great throughout, at times pretty heart rendering. The writing serves the episode well, and there are plenty of lovely conversations between several characters as they support each other going through the loss of their great friend.
3. Monica & Chandler Can’t Have a Baby “The One With The Fertility Test”
You might not expect an episode of Friends to feature on a list of moving moments. Well no, in fairness you might not be too surprised if you are a fan of the show. It could be sweet and tender when it wanted to be.
I went with a moment from The One With The Fertility Test episode where Monica and Chandler discover that it is unlikely that they will be able to have kids together. Prior to this moment in the episode (which is the closing scene), we had all the laughs we would expect from a typical instalment, including a return of Janice.
However, after a phone call from their doctor, Chandler has to deliver some big news to Monica. The reason why I find this moment moving is first, these are characters that I like and am rooting for, so when they get some news that isn’t what they were hoping for I feel it 🙂
But I actually picked this moment for feel-good reasons too. After the news begins to set in for the both of them and they share a hug, its the closing moments of the episode that contains the kicker for me. It has Chandler reassuring Monica that ‘they will find a way through this’ and work something out. Of course, long-term fans will know how things do work out on that front. I like the positive ending to that little bit of drama, and Friends was always good at that with its iconic characters.
4. Buffy’s Mum Dies/Buffy Finds Her Mum (Buffy the Vampire Slayer)
Thanks to Josh Whedon’s excellent, and at times groundbreaking vampire-slaying series I was introduced to a show that played out in a style I was not previously familiar with. Buffy The Vampire Slayer was far wittier with its snappy dialogue then any other fantasy series I had seen at the time, whilst still pulling off interesting storylines and character arcs for its talented cast.
Buffy, a show where so many characters met their end, usually due to supernatural means (and usually a ‘bad guy’), delivered one of the most well-acted and directed emotional ‘death discoveries’ I have ever seen on TV. For me, it is of the most moving scenes I have ever witnessed on the telly-box, and one of the most down-to-earth-and this comes from a show about vampires and all sorts of other non-humans! And yes, the show is largely filled with quirky one-liners and fantasy going-ons. But maybe that contrast is another reason the scene delivers such an impact when everything is scaled back to ‘only-too-believable’ territory’ and you see every moment that Buffy is going through on the discovery of her Mother. It is excellent and very moving.
Fry Waited For Seymour
Right, if anyone tells me cartoons can not be moving I could show you several examples, and they may well feature in another list of this kind. But this Futurama moment is more than enough reasoning to prove my point for today!
Throughout its run, this was a show that, like M.r Groening’s other big franchise, The Simpsons, could tug at the heartstrings when it felt like it. Both shows are built around laughter, but laughter with depth.
I wasn’t expecting the emotional punch of this episode when it originally aired, as I had not known anything about what the episode was going to be about. Seymour had carried out Fry’s wish of waiting for him…until he could wait no longer…….talk about cutting onions in front of me!!!!!
But as a side note, the episode Bender’s Big Score puts a far happier spin on this closing moment…….
So I hope you enjoyed, and maybe was even moved by, this list. I will likely be doing more entries into this category as well as picking 5 for other categories. I have to ask, what’s your Most Moving TV Moment?
Take Care, Ben xxx