In a discussion as to who was the best companion in Doctor Who, there were a surprisingly large number of votes for Ace. When someone asked why, everyone gave the same reason: she once beat the crap out of a Dalek with a baseball bat. Because it called her "small". In fact, Sophie Aldred herself mentioned in a DVD documentary that, after her marriage and her children, the greatest moment of her life was the fact that she beat the crap out of a Dalek using a baseball bat.
It's followed up with a nice Big Damn Heroes moment. You could see the entire encounter on Youtube, except that the BBC asked that it be pulled.
This also inspired the creation of The Ace Test for the evaluation of the worthiness of later Companions. Basically, any Companion is judged according to the question "Can you see this person clobbering a Dalek with a baseball bat?" If so, the Companion is acceptable and may stay; if not, exterminate her/him/it immediately.
In Ace's favour, the bat was dripping with energy from direct exposure to the Hand of Omega, which was the only thing making what she did feasible; otherwise she'd have been running. Still takes nerve to do, though.
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The Doctor ends up saving the day in the first story, "An Unearthly Child", easily outwitting a murderous caveman:
Kal: Za killed the old woman with his knife! Here! Here is the knife he killed her with! Doctor: This knife has no blood on it. I said, this knife had no blood on it! Kal: It is a bad knife. It does not show the things it does. Doctor: It is a finer knife than yours. Kal: I, Kal, say that it is a bad knife. Doctor: This knife can cut and stab. I have never seen a better knife. Kal: Then I will show you one! (He pulls out his own knife, which is covered in blood) Doctor: This knife shows what it has done. There is blood on it! (shows it to the tribe) Who killed the old woman? Za: I did not kill her. Doctor: (turning to face Kal) You killed the old woman!
They then proceed to drive him out with rocks, at the Doctor's prompt.
He gets two iconic moments of awesome in the finale of "The Daleks", one when he learns of the Daleks' plan to irradiate the atmosphere so that only they can survive, his first true encounter with a relentless evil which essentially mirrors his own;
Doctor: This senseless, evil killing!
and another when the Daleks, powerless and dying, approach him and ask him to find a way to save them after all they've done, to which he replies:
In "Marco Polo", the Doctor cannot bow to Kublai Khan due to his back being sore from having walked across China. He later ends up winning a big part of the Mongol empire off him in a game of Backgammon.
The First Doctor manages to convince virtually an entire audience that he is a brilliant harp player without playing a note in "The Romans". Also in that episode, beating a big guy so easily, he laughs during it.
He escapes a sound-locked cell by replicating the tone with a spoon and a glass of water in The Power of the Daleks.
Convincing Blade and the other Chameleons to turn against the Director in The Faceless Ones.
Creating Alpha, Beta and Omega, and starting the Dalek civil war in The Evil of the Daleks.
"Tomb of the Cybermen" gives the Second Doctor the moment when he baits the monomaniacal and increasingly delusional Eric Klieg into revealing just how power-mad he is - and then caps it with the perfect put-down:
Doctor: ...Well now I know you're mad. I just wanted to make sure.
Holding his own in a psychic duel against the Great Intelligence in The Abominable Snowmen.
KO'ing an Ice Warrior with a stink bomb in "The Ice Warriors".
In "The Enemy of the World", just before his duel with Salamander, he begins to cement his Beware the Nice Ones status:
Doctor: We'll put you outside, Salamander. No friends, no safety, nothing. You'll run, but they'll catch up with you.
Gaining control of a Robot Yeti in The Web of Fear.
Frying a Cyberman with a force field in The Wheel in Space.
Blowing the villains up with their own missiles in The Dominators.
Channing: You're too late. The Doctor: On this planet, there is a saying that it is never too late.
The Doctor Obfuscating Stupidity and parking Bessie in the middle of the road to get back Recovery 7 in "Ambassadors of Death".
In Inferno, the Doctor defeats an opponent with two fingers.
Bluffing his way out of an execution in The Daemons, "moving" several distant objects (when in truth it's Benton shooting them) and using Bessie's remote control function to take the town leader by surprise.
Defeating Grun in a pit battle in The Curse of Peladon.
In "The Sea Devils", the Third Doctor not only manages to best the Master in a sword fight - he disarms him, holds him at swordpoint, steals his lunch for no real reason other than to prove that he can, and then gives the Master his sword back because he's having too much fun to stop. Oh, and then beats him again. Granted, the Doctor still ends up captured, but the entire sequence is pretty awesome.
In "The Three Doctors", Two and Three are able to use that recorder in The Plan to get them out of Omega's world.
In Frontier in Space, the Doctor single-handedly breaks out of the Draconian Embassy, defeating several opponents on his way with little difficulty.
In The Monster of Peladon, the Doctor has an epic fight scene toward the end with a Peladonian rebel.
The Fourth Doctor's "Do I have the right?" speech from "Genesis of the Daleks".
His episode-long cat-and-mouse game with Goth in The Deadly Assassin is one slow-burn of Bad Ass.
In "The Brain of Morbius", when he faces Morbius and challenges him to a mind-bending contest. Ok, he nearly dies, but it's still awesome.
Let's face it, any time the Fourth Doctor performs the switch from charming, childish and humorous to pure hissing rage is going to herald (or make) a Moment of Awesome.
The Doctor: I doubt it, Morbius!
There's a reason this exchange from The Face of Evil is in the Funny Moments list, but the Doctor's sheer unflappability even as his bluff is called is pretty awesome as well:
Doctor: Now drop your weapons, or I'll kill him with this deadly jelly baby.
Doctor:[Calmly] I don't take orders from anyone. *noms jelly baby* Take me to your leader.
In Horror of Fang Rock, the Doctor and co. are under attack by the ice-dwelling Rutan fleet, so what does he do? Simple. He uses a scope and some diamonds to turn a lighthouse into a giant laser beam. Of course!
In "The Androids of Tara", the Doctor pwns Count Grendel, the best swordsman on the planet. Meanwhile, Romana and Princess Strella stop Grendel's goon with a needlework loom and a pitcher.
How about this great bit from The Pirate Planet? After the Captain reveals the true nature of the Planet Zanak to the Doctor (the planet in question being a hollow world sized spaceship which swallows other planets whole and mines them for minerals. The Captain then keeps the crushed remains of the planets he's plundered in a trophy room.), the latter then gives this epic speech of utter outrage, and shows why Tom Baker is awesome:
The Doctor: Appreciate it? APPRECIATE IT?! What, you commit mass destruction and murder on a scale that's almost *inconceivable,* and you ask me to appreciate it? Just because you've happen to have made a brilliantly conceived *toy* out of the mummified remains of planets! The Captain: DEVILSTORMS, DOCTOR! IT IS NOT A TOY! The Doctor: THEN WHAT'S IT FOR?! What are you doing? What could possibly be worth all this?
From the climax of "State of Decay"- he launches the Great Vampires' scout ship from the surface of the planet, then guides it to fall straight down, piercing the Great Vampire's heart, using it as a makeshift "stake", causing the Three That Rule to die alongside him.
Then there's Four's final MOA, with his brutal fight with the Master on a satellite array, including stringing up his scarf to trip the Master.
"The Caves of Androzani" is basically a four-episode long MOA for the Fifth Doctor.
Who could forget the cliffhanger to episode three ("I'm not gonna let you stop me now!"). It takes several viewings to notice it, but the fact is he is not only saying it to Stoltz, but to himself- he is stopping himself regenerating (witness the effect on the screen).
Stotz: You better turn this ship around Doctor! The Doctor: Why? Stotz: Because I'll kill you if you don't! The Doctor: Not a very convincing argument actually, Stotz, because I'm going to die soon anyway, unless of course— Stotz: I'll give you to the count of three! The Doctor: Unless of course I can find the antidote… I owe it to my young friend to try because I got her into this— Stotz: One, The Doctor: So you see— Stotz: Two, The Doctor: I'm not going to let you stop me now!
Point of fact, who can forget the scenes leading up to the regeneration in the final episode of The Caves of Androzani? Carrying Peri across a battlefield surrounded with explosions, nearly dying of asphyxiation in an earlier scene and generally engaging in derring-do - all so he can save the girl he accidentally got into this situation and all while dying from spectrox poisoning. And not only this, but in the final moments of the first scene mentioned, he knows he has no cure for himself - he still delivers Peri to safety and meets death with dignity. And people thought the Fifth Doctor wasn't badass.
Stealing a gun and fighting the Cybermen in Attack of the Cybermen might seem highly out-of-character for the Doctor, but it's still an awesome scene.
He gets a delicious MOA in "Revelation of the Daleks" when he offers to shake the hand of the defeated Davros (said hand had just been shot off).
The Sixth Doctor's moment comes at the end of "Trial of a Time Lord", when he denounces the Kangaroo Court that the Time Lords have set up for him to cover up their own atrocities:
In all my travels through time and space I have battled against evil. Against power-mad conspirators. I should have stayed here! The oldest civilization — decadent, degenerate and rotten to the core! Power mad conspirators? Daleks, Sontarans, Cybermen — they're still in the nursery compared to us! Ten million years of absolute power. That's what it takes to be really corrupt.
In part four of "Remembrance of the Daleks", the Doctor rewires a Dalek machine he had thoroughly fried earlier that day.
All of Seven's intricate Chessmaster style schemes can qualify, but especially in the episode "Remembrance of the Daleks", where he briar patches Davros into blowing up the Dalek home system, with a Time Lord weapon he'd stashed away in his first life. His vicious serving of Davros in the following moments are brutal.
Doctor: I have pity for you. Goodbye Davros, it hasn't been pleasant. [cuts off transmission]
And then he manages to do away with the Last Dalek solely through talking to it.
From The Happiness Patrol: Only the 7th Doctor could disarm someone by telling them to shoot him.
Sniper 2: "Get back. Or he'll use the gun." The Doctor: "Yes, I imagine he will. You like guns, don't you?" Sniper 1: "This is a specialised weapon. It's designed for roof duty. Designed for long range. I've never used one up close before." Sniper 2: "Let him go." Sniper 1: "No." The Doctor: "No. In fact... let him come a little closer." Sniper 1: "Stay where you are." The Doctor: "Why? Scared? Why should you be scared? You're the one with the gun." Sniper 1: "That's right." The Doctor: "And you like guns, don't you?" Sniper 2: "He'll kill you." The Doctor: "Of course he will. That's what guns are for. Pull a trigger. End a life. Simple, isn't it?'" Sniper 1: Yes. The Doctor: "Makes sense, doesn't it?" Sniper 1: "Yes." The Doctor: "A life, killing life." Sniper 2: "Who are you?" The Doctor: "Shut up. Why don't you do it then? Look me in the eye. Pull the trigger. End my life." Sniper 1: "No." The Doctor: "Why not?" Sniper 1: "I can't." The Doctor: "Why not?" Sniper 1: "I don't know." The Doctor: "You don't, do you. Throw away your gun."
The Seventh Doctor gets one in "The Greatest Show In The Galaxy" when he calmly walks away from a circus tent — which proceeds to blow up very violently right behind him.
This wasn't just an MOA for the Doctor, but for Sylvester McCoy as well. The explosion was way bigger than expected and his clothes actually caught fire, but he knew there could be no second take, and didn't even flinch.
In the episode "Battlefield", knights Ancelyn and Mordred are engaged in a vicious swordfight... and the Doctor just walks calmly between them in the middle of their duel.
Lifting his hat to them as he strolls right between them.
The Doctor: But you evolve too, Light. Light: Nonsense. The Doctor: Of course you do. You change, you adapt, all the time. Your attitude, your place, your mind... I mean, look at you now: you're no longer your original shape. And I don't think much of your catalogue- it's full of gaps. Light:(suddenly alarmed) All organic life is recorded! The Doctor: What about the gryphons, the basilisks? You missed the dragons, the bandersnatches... then there are the slithy toves and the crowned Saxe-Coburg. (Strolling into the entrance hall, he casually clicks his fingers and Light immediately appears at the staircase) Light:(frantically reviewing his data screen) Where are these items? The Doctor: I can't think how you missed them. You have to complete the catalogue before you destroy all life here. Light:Control? The Doctor: She's no use to you, she's evolved as well. Light: No! All slipping away... The Doctor: All is change, all is movement. Tell me, Light, haven't you just changed your location? Light:(Gritting his teeth) Not yet. The Doctor: What's the matter, Light? Changed your mind? Light: You are endlessly agitating, unceasingly mischievous, will you never STOP?! The Doctor: I suppose I could. It would make a change. Light:(desperate) Nimrod- I can rely on you! Assist me now... Nimrod: I'm sorry, sir, but my allegiance is to this planet- my birthright. Light:(Hysterical) Everything is changing! All in flux! Nothing remains the same! The Doctor: Even remains change. It's this planet- it can't help itself. Light: I... will not change... I'll wake up soon. No... change... dead... (trails off as he begins to evaporate) The Doctor:(To the data screen) Subject for catalogue: file under "imagination, comma, lack of."
The Eighth Doctor only had ninety minutes on television, much of which received a lukewarm reaction from much of the audience. There are, however at least two moments which are largely agreed to have perfectly captured the spirit of the older series and managed to cement the Eighth Doctor's awesomeness:
Firstly, the scene where he escapes from the cops by stealing a gun using a jelly baby... and holding himself hostage, thus beautifully subverting the behaviour of nearly every action movie protagonist in existence. ("Now, will you stand aside before I shoot myself?")
The other, towards the end. The Master, having murdered Bruce, Chang Li and Grace, brought the Earth to the brink of destruction and very nearly stolen the Doctor's remaining lives. He leaps at the Doctor, but is blinded by the glare from one of the Eye of Harmony's mirrors, and flies into the black hole that powers the TARDIS. And as he hangs on for dear life — The Doctor reaches out and says, "Give me your hand."
Christopher Eccleston packed a lot of awesome into his single season as the Doctor. This speech from "Rose":
Do you know like we were saying, about the earth revolving? It's like when you're a kid, the first time they tell you that the world is turning and you just can't quite believe it 'cause everything looks like it's standing still. I can feel it-the turn of the earth. The ground beneath our feet is spinning at a thousand miles an hour. The entire planet is hurtling around the sun at sixty seven thousand miles an hour. And I can feel it. We're falling through space, you and me, clinging to the skin of this tiny little world. And, if we let go... That's who I am. Now forget me, Rose Tyler. Go home.
"The Long Game": Revoking Adam's companion status after he nearly changed history.
Pretty much every time that Steven Moffat writes a Doctor Who episode, a Moment of Awesome for the Doctor (or someone, at least) can't be far behind. But these gems from "The Doctor Dances" stand out:
The Doctor turns up for dinner. ("Thanks miss!")
"Go to your room!"
The Doctor identifies Jack's weapon:
The Doctor: Sonic blaster, 51st Century — Weapon factories at Villengard? Jack: Yeah. You've been to the factories? The Doctor: Once. Jack: They're gone now, destroyed. Main reactor went critical. Vaporised the lot. The Doctor: Like I said. Once.
When the Doctor takes Bon Slitheen out to dinner while the TARDIS refuels. She slips poison into his drink while he's gone. When he comes back, the first thing he does upon sitting down is switch cups. Then she shoots a poisonous dart out of her finger - only for the Doctor to catch it in mid-air without even looking up. Then she leans in close, about to breathe poison on him... and he squirts some mouthwash into her mouth.
The Doctor: No! 'Cause this is what I'm going to do: I'm going to rescue her! I'm going to save Rose Tyler from the middle of the Dalek fleet, and then I'm going to save the Earth, and then, just to finish off, I'm going to wipe every last stinking Dalek out of the sky! Dalek: But you have no weapons! No defenses! No plan! The Doctor: Yeah! And doesn't that scare you to death? Rose? Rose: Yes, Doctor? The Doctor: I'm coming to get you.
What really sells this moment is the Daleks' reaction: the Doctor's speech really does scare them to death, as they immediately scramble their troops for an attack.
This is a cool moment thanks to Chris Eccleston's acting either way, but if you are British, it has an added layer of "hell yeah!" because it ties into the Big Brother bit at the beginning - host Davina McCall always uses the same line when announcing an eviction: "X, you have thirty seconds to leave the Big Brother house. I'm coming to get you!" Housemates have commented in the past that they love that because it gives an air of support from her, as the way she always says it (with a certain amount of joy) gives the impression that she means "don't worry, I'll be there with you". When the Doctor says this to Rose, to anyone who's watched more than a handful of BB episodes (which, considering the phenomenon it is here, is probably the majority of DW fans) it makes you grin that little bit wider. This furthermore is nicely contrasted with the episode's own use of McCall's line, which - given that the show as in the episode is part of an oppressive regime which forces people to participate against their will and kills them (although not in the way they expect) when they get voted out, is a lot more sinister.
Though of course, the earlier use isn't McCall's friendly "I'm coming to get you", but "we're going to get you" - quite a different implication!
Speaking of Eccleston's acting, the final third of "Bad Wolf" is certainly an MOA for him as a performer, starting from the moment of Rose's apparent death. No amount of screaming or tears could possibly convey the amount of despair and loss in his eyes in that shocked, silent moment.
And then his Oh Crap look when he realises that there are half a million Daleks on Earth's doorstep.
"The Parting of the Ways" is basically one forty-five minute long MOA for the Ninth Doctor.
"Do you know what they call me in the ancient legends of the Dalek homeworld? The Oncoming Storm. You might have removed all your emotions, but I reckon right down deep in your DNA, there's one little spark left. And that's fear. Doesn't it just burn when you face me?"
"I think you're forgetting something: I'm the Doctor. And if there's one thing I can do, it's talk. I've got five billion languages and you haven't got one way of stopping me, so if anyone's gonna shut up, it's you!" Anything which causes Daleks to back off? Awesome.
"You were fantastic, absolutely fantastic...and you know what? So was I." Pretty much says it all.
Nice bookend to how he introduced himself to her. "Nice to meet you, Rose. [holds up explosive with a half-badass, half-nuts (read: 100%-Doctor) grin] Run for your life!"
While his next incarnation claimed that wielding the power of the Time Vortex would turn a Time Lord into a vengeful God, the Ninth Doctor absorbed all of it to save Rose... and then he let it go.
"The Christmas Invasion"... the Doctor, his hand just chopped off in a way that would have made George Lucas proud: "As it happens, I'm within the first fifteen hours of my regeneration, allowing me to do this." (regrows hand) "And you wanna know the best bit? This new hand... it's a fightin' hand!"
The Doctor gets a moment of awesome even before the above notes; earlier in the episode, Rose realizes she can't understand the Sycorax despite the translating properties of the TARDIS, concluding that this is because the Doctor is unconscious. Later, we find Rose, Harriet Jones, and a man translating the Sycorax language with a device, about to be killed. The Sycorax leader is boasting in his language...then, he starts speaking English. Rose realizes that the TARDIS is translating again...cue the Doctor exiting the TARDIS. He doesn't do it dramatically, he doesn't start fighting right away, he just steps out of the TARDIS casually. And it is awesome.
The Doctor: Now... first thing's first. How do I look? Rose: Um...different. The Doctor: Good different or bad different? Rose: Just... different. The Doctor: Am I... ginger? Rose: No, you're just sort of... brown. The Doctor:Aww, I wanted to be ginger! I've never been ginger.
In "New Earth", the Doctor puts himself in perspective for some Sisters.
Sister: And who are you to decide that? The Doctor: I'm the Doctor! And if you don't like it, you want to take it to a higher authority, there isn't one, it stops with me!
"The Girl in the Fireplace":
Reinette: "What do monsters have nightmares about?" Doctor "Me!"
The above line is right after... well, Television Without Pity said it best: "He totally beat up the literal monster under her literal bed. That's a keeper right there. I won't be crude, but that's services rendered, in my opinion."
Even better: he says it while beating up the Droid.
The Doctor leaving through the rotating fireplace and telling a stunned courtier:
I'm the Doctor- and I just snogged Madame de Pompadour!
The Doctor pretending to be three sheets to the wind so he can get close enough to a clockwork robot to destroy it.
Clockwork Droid: She is compatible. The Doctor: Compatible? If you believe that... you probably believe this is a glass of wine. *Pours said glass over the top of its head*
The Doctor rides a horse through a mirror, then there's the following exchange when he's introduced to Louis XV.
Reinette: This is my lover, the King of France. Doctor: Yeah, well, I'm the Lord of Time.
The Doctor: Hold a minute. You've got hands, Mr. Connolly. Two big hands! Why is that your wife's job? Connolly: It's housework, innit? The Doctor: And that's a woman's job? Connolly: Of course it is! The Doctor: Mr. Connolly, what gender is the Queen? Connolly: (uncomfortable) She's a female. The Doctor: And are you suggesting the Queen does the housework? Connolly: No, not at all! The Doctor: Then get busy.
The Doctor:They did what? Bishop: I'm sorry? The Doctor: They left her where? Bishop: Just... in the street. The Doctor: The street. They left her in the street. They took her face, and just chucked her out and left her in the street. And as a result, that makes things... simple. Very very simple. Do you know why? Bishop: No. The Doctor: Because now, Detective Inspector Bishop, there is no power on this earth that can stop me!
The Satan Pit. Rose and the Tenth Doctor kill Satan (or at least a being with a good claim to inspiring the legend). By dropping it down a black hole. 'Nuff said.
The speech the Doctor gives just before he does was pretty awesome too.
"So that's the trap, the great test, the final judgement, I dunno. But if I kill you, I kill her. But that implies, in this big grand scheme of gods and devils, that she's just a victim. Well, I've seen a lot of this universe. I've seen fake gods and bad gods and demi-gods and would-be gods. I've had the whole pantheon. But if I believe in one thing... just one thing... I believe in her!"
The denouement of "Family of Blood." The Doctor didn't disguise himself as a human for months because he was afraid of the Family. He hid because he knew what he'd do to the Family.
He never raised his voice. That was the worst thing - the fury of the Time Lord - and then we discovered why. Why this Doctor, who had fought with gods and demons, why he had run away from us and hidden. He was being kind. He wrapped my father in unbreakable chains forged in the heart of a dwarf star. He tricked my mother into the event horizon of a collapsing galaxy to be imprisoned there, forever. He still visits my sister, once a year, every year. I wonder if one day he might forgive her, but there she is. Can you see? He trapped her inside a mirror. Every mirror. If ever you look at your reflection and see something move behind you just for a second, that's her. That's always her. As for me, I was suspended in time and the Doctor put me to work standing over the fields of England, as their protector. We wanted to live forever. So the Doctor made sure we did. -Son of Mine, in Family of Blood
His ultimate MOA came near the end, when he reveals himself as the Doctor, and blows the Family's ship up.
Oh, I think the explanation might be that you've been fooled by a simple olfactory misdirection. It's a little bit like ventriloquism of the nose. It's an elemantary trick in certain parts of the galaxy. But it has got to be said. I don't like the look of that hydrokilominator. It seems to be indicating that you're got energy feedback all the way through the retro-stabilisers, feeding back into the primary heat converters. OOH! 'Cos if there's one thing you shouldn't have done. You shouldn't have let me press all those buttons. But, to be fair, I will give you one word of advice. RUN!
"The Last of the Time Lords":
The Doctor: Tell me the human race is degenerate now. When they can do this. I'm sorry. I'msosorry. Because you know what happens next.
All the while he is glowing and floating towards the Master, invincible and unstoppable.
The Doctor: I'm the Doctor. I'm a Time Lord. I'm from the planet Gallifrey in the constellation of Kasterborous. I'm 903 years old, and I'm the man who's gonna save your lives and all six billion people on the planet below. You got a problem with that?
The Doctor striding forwards, holding out his hands and being lifted up through the ship by a pair of angels. Say what you want about the inclusion of religious imagery and portraying the Doctor as The Messiah, but that moment is soberingly awesome to watch.
The Doctor pulling the Titanic up in the nick of time and missing Buckingham Palace by literally inches.
Having the Queen, without a hint of anything but calm in her voice, wave and say "Thank you Doctor, thank you" as if this sort of thing happens every day.
It's incredibly minor, but after a couple who won tickets onboard the ship fall for a prank, the Doctor soaks the snobs who pranked them in their own champagne.
It's not a "shiver down the spine moment" like "I'm coming to get you" or " Why would I give her my screwdriver?" but it's classic. In "The Fires of Pompeii" the Doctor holds off the attacking alien menace with... a water pistol. At first you think it's just a bluff and he treats it as such, but then you remember that these are lava monsters and actually, that kinda stings. How often do you get a character who can seriously hold off the bad guys with a water pistol?
Donna: You fought her off with a water pistol?! I bloody love you!
In "The Sontaran Strategem", the Doctor defeating the enemy commander, no less, with applied squash.
"The Doctor's Daughter" after Jenny takes a bullet from General Cobb, the Doctor points a gun at Cobb's head... of course being the Technical Pacifist he is he doesn't shoot but what he tells Cobb and the rest of the colonist descendants is definitely a MOA worthy speech.
"Forest of the Dead": The Doctor tries to get the Vashta Nerada to back down. The Vashta Nerada won't back down. The Doctor tells the Vashta Nerada to read all the files on him in The Library. The Vashta Nerada back down.
"Don't play games with me. You just killed someone I liked, that is not a safe place to stand! I'm the Doctor, and you're in the biggest Library in the universe. *pauses* Look me up."
Sort of a Moment of His-Awesomeness-Precedes-Him, that one!
He then finds out that armies will all but flee in his wake, learns that he will build an improved sonic screwdriver in the future (with optional body pattern imprint capability), saves the life of River Song by plugging her pattern into the planet's computer (keeping her alive for all time), then learns to open the TARDIS doors with the snap of his fingers. Epic.
Doctor: Why? Why would I give her my screwdriver? Why would I do that? Thing is, future me had those years to think about it. All those years to think of a way to save her, and all he did was give her a screwdriver! Why would I do that?! (pops the lid and realizes what he can do as the Crowning Music of Awesome reaches a crescendo) Oh.Oh! OH! LOOK AT THAT!!! I'M VERY GOOD!!! Donna: What have you done? Doctor: Saved her. (starts running)
This could also count as a MOA for the future Doctor (even before he appeared, as he uses the screwdriver that was later modified and given to River, so it was probably him doing the modifying (and devising the rescue-plan that goes with it).
Despite the fact that Turn Left is basically a Tear Jerker incarnate mixed with some terror for kicks, the entire extended cast gets at least one even if it's usually the death of them in the alternate timeline. The Doctor gets one in absence for being the one who inspired most of them.
"The Next Doctor": Humongous Mecha trampling Victorian-era London. The Doctor counters this, by borrowing the Next Doctor's TARDIS... a hot air balloon. You have to admit, that takes balls.
The Doctor gets his 16th gajillionth MOA in "Planet Of The Dead". Three words: BUS BITCH-SLAP.
Two more: flying bus.
"The Waters of Mars":
The Doctor: It's taken me all these years to realize the laws of time are MINE. AND THEY WILL OBEY ME!
And he would have gotten away with it too, if not for his previous lecturing.
Also absolutely terrifying.
Gadget! The Doctor turning him into a super-scooter is cool, but the Moment of Awesome comes when he un-boxes and remote-controls Gadget to fly the Tardis in to save them at LITERALLY the last second - complete with Crowning Music of Awesome in the background as it all unfolds.
The music changes, however, from "Awesome" to horrific when you hear it again as the Master transforms the entire human race into carbon-copies of himself, and you realize that, as catchy as it is, it signifies nothing less than a massive Oh Crap.
"The End of Time"
Quite possibly the best usage of one of Ten's Catch Phrases ever:
Tenth Doctor: There's an old Earth saying, captain. A phrase of great power and wisdom, and consolation to the soul in times of need. Vinvocci: What's that then? Tenth Doctor: Allons-y!
It just doesn't get more awesome than having Doctor Who and James Bond in the same scene.
To defeat Davros, he Tenth Doctor teamed up with Rose Tyler, Donna Noble, Martha Jones, Captain Jack Harkness, Sarah Jane Smith, Gwen Cooper, Ianto Jones, Luke Smith, Mr. Smith, K-9, Jackie Tyler, Mickey Smith, his metacrisis, the TARDIS and Harriet Jones (former Prime Minister), all at once.
The 11th Doctor is born as the TARDIS burns around him, laughing joyfully while it's exploding, and a kick-ass guitar riff plays in the background.
And still not ginger! Something else, there's something... important. I'm...I'm...I'm...(explosion knocks him back) CRASHING!!! (laughs) (explosions) GERONIMO!!!
"The Eleventh Hour". Where the Doctor shows the planet Earth is protected as he finishes getting dressed.
The Eleventh Doctor:Oh, you're not the first lot to have come here. Oh, there have been so many.(slideshow of various monsters) And what you've got to ask is, what happened to them? (hologram of all the previous Doctors kicking the collective asses of every alien to mess with Earth, ever, comes up while utterly awesome music plays. It gets to the Tenth, and the Eleventh walks through, having just finished picking out his new clothes) Hello. I'm the Doctor. Basically...run.
And the monster does. Epic on toast.
Oh, and watch close- as the Atraxi representative flies away, it keeps its eye on the Doctor the whole time. If those giant eyes had pants, they'd probably have been soiling them at that point. The Doctor is so badass that a clip show scares alien threats off.
A clip show and a call-back to "Rose", as that last part was the very first words spoken by Nine. Awesome..
And let's not forget that Eleven's introductory episode has him saving the world with no TARDIS, no Sonic Screwdriver, and only twenty minutes to work with.
And a post office, but it's closed.
With two minutes to spare. Really.
"Who da man?" indeed.
The above exchange is after the aliens in question have already left, and he calls them back to Earth to answer for the atrocity they were threatening.
"Victory of the Daleks". The Doctor bluffs the Daleks for a long while by convincing them that a jammy dodger (a jam-filled biscuit sandwich) is the self-destruct switch for the TARDIS. Also doubles as a Funny Moment, especially when the Progenitor Daleks finally figure it out.
Dalek: TARDIS self destruct non existent! Doctor: *Eats biscuit* Alright, it's a jammy dodger! BUT I WAS PROMISED TEA!
Spitfires with energy weapons. In space. That is all.
"The Time of Angels":
The Angels use the voice of their latest victim (who still has some sentience) to taunt the Doctor. The Doctor responds.
In "Flesh and Stone", there were two in the same scene: "No, seriously, GET a GRIP!" and "I just don't think you understand the gravity of the situation!"
The latter being a nice reuse of the exact same pun as seen in Star Trek V: The Final Frontier in the opening scene.
The Doctor kicking ass at football in "The Lodger", complete with theme music blaring.
From "The Pandorica Opens": The Doctor gets on a microphone, surrounded by 15 Roman soldiers and "10,000? 100,000? 1,000,000?" alien space ships who all want what he's got. First, he tells them who he is, and then tells them to shut up. They do. He tells them that he's got the Pandorica. Then, he reminds them what he's done to him, and he tells them to let someone else try first. They leave. Romans gape.
The Doctor: Now the question of the hour is: Who's got the Pandorica? Answer: I do. Next question: Who's coming to take it from me? (No response) Come on, look at me! No plan, no backup, no weapons worth a damn, oh, and something else, I don't have. Anything. To. Lose! So! If you're sitting up there in your silly little spaceship with all your silly. Little. Guns. And you have any plans of taking the Pandorica 'tonight', just remember who's standing in your way. Remember every black day I ever stopped you, and then! And then! Do the smart thing. Let somebody else try first.
So, in other words, he's basically saying..."COME AT ME BRO!"
This is Double Subverted later on. Subversion the first: the Pandorica is actually a prison for the Doctor, and by sticking around he's just ensured he'll get put in it. Subversion the second: it turns out he was right after all, since the Pandorica protects him from erasure and after he gets out via time travel abuse he proceeds to use it to save Amy, himself, and the universe, in that order. Recalling pretty much his boast of never putting him in a trap in "The Time of Angels", "Who takes the Pandorica takes the universe", indeed.
Near the end of "The Big Bang," the Doctor is ready to sacrifice not only his life, but his very EXISTENCE, to "reboot" the universe. As he's flying the Pandorica on a suicide-run into the TARDIS explosion, he takes time to send one final message to River, Rory, and Amy. He smiles as he drops the computer...
River: It's from the Doctor. Amy: What does it say? River:...Geronimo.
Actually, it's implied that he had River tell Amy that he would be erased from existence when his last in-person word to Amy was "Gotcha." Which basically doubles the awesome because he knew he would be able to come back and left Amy the clue to do it!
"The Impossible Astronaut": "I'm going to need a SWAT team ready to mobilise, street maps covering all of Florida, a pot of coffee, twelve Jammy Dodgers and a fez!" The rest of the scene is not necessary. Awesome will, without a doubt, ensue.
Canton gets a pretty good MOA, albeit a smaller one, back at him. After the Doctor demonstrates his knowledge and, frankly, how necessary his participation is in solving this case, Canton calmly continues to play hardball and merely responds, "[beat] Get him his maps."
Also, you can't forget...
'''Canton: Mr. President, that man walked in here with a big blue box and three of his friends and that's the man he walked past. One of them's worth listening to.
From "Day Of The Moon", how the Doctor defeats the Silence: He plays a clip of one of the Silence saying "you should kill us all on sight" during the broadcast of the moon landing, causing every human who ever watches footage of the moon landing (which would end up being billions of people, for billions of years) to kill the Silence as soon as they see one. Also counts as a CMOA for humanity.
Neil Armstrong:...one giant leap for mankind. The Doctor: And one whacking great kick up the backside for the Silence! You just raised an army against yourselves! And now, for a thousand generations, you're going to be ordering them to destroy you, every day. How fast can you run? Because today's the day the human race throws you off their planet, and they won't even know they're doing it. I think quite possibly the word you're looking for, right now, is...whoops, run. Guys, I mean us: RUN!
But before that, when he finds the auto-saved last screams of terror of hundreds of Time Lords who died on the planet long ago making him realise there truly are no more Time Lords AGAIN!,
"You gave me hope and then you took it away. That's enough to make anyone dangerous. WHO KNOWS what it will do to me! Basically......run!"
1 They ran too.
This exchange is fantastic.
House: Fear me; I've killed hundreds of Time Lords. The Doctor: Fear me, I've killed all of them.
'Three minutes forty seconds'. It actually took three minutes forty-two seconds, but who's counting?
The Doctor turns two armies against each other without lifting a finger, only for their leader to recover the situation, talking both armies into standing down and disarming themselves. Then the Doctor's army turns up and claim sthe entire base. Without. A. Single. Casualty.
The prequel trailer to A Good Man Goes To War.
Dorium: But all this to imprison one child? * headless monks look at him* Dorium: Oh I know what you're up to, I hear everything in this place. I even hear rumours about whose child you've taken, are you mad?! * monks turn away and move off* Dorium: You know the stories about the Doctor? The things that man has done? God help us if you've made him angry!
"I want them to call you Colonel Runaway. I want children to laugh at your door because they found the house of Colonel Runaway. And when people ask YOU... if it's a good idea to get to ME through the PEOPLE I LOVE... I want you to tell them your name."
The Doctor shows such pure, undiluted rage when he gets to the words "the people I love" that Vastra - who up til this point has been portrayed as an unflinching badass - is visibly shaken at the Doctor's ferocity.
The following exchange is enough to make you crap yourself too, if you know the Doctor:
The Doctor: "Oh look, I'm angry. That's new. I'm really not sure what's going to happen now." Madame Kovarian:(steps in) "The anger of a good man is not a problem. Good men... have too many rules." The Doctor: "Good men don't need rules. Today is not the day to find out why I have so many."
His duel of I Know You Know I Know with a psychotic River, including giving Nine a nod by making her pull out a banana.
What does he do after finding his room with his greatest fear? He calmly puts a "Do Not Disturb" sign on it. Fear can't stop the Doctor.
"Look into my eye." Who but the Doctor could go to his own death, a fixed point in time that can't possibly be overwritten, and survive?
It's easy to forget in the wake of every single other thing in the episode, but the first thing we see the Doctor doing is perhaps the most brutal dispatching of a Dalek in the show's history. And then he plops its eyestalk on a counter as a sign that he's not someone to be screwed with.
The Doctor vs. the Silurian soilders in "Cold Blood".
Not to mention having The Doctor free-fall millions upon millions of miles to earth from space after being jettisoned from said spaceship, wearing a huge grin on his face and laughing like a maniac, treating it as though he were skydiving or bungie-jumping from within Earth's atmosphere and thoroughly enjoying every single second of it despite imminent death!
Several of them in Asylum of the Daleks, but most hilarious and epic has to be the end, where after the Daleks' entire collective memory of the Doctor has been permanently erased, the entire assembled parliament of the Daleks screams the same question over and over again: DOCTOR WHO!? DOCTOR WHO!!!!!!????
This is also a Fridge CMOA for Oswin as wiping the Dalek's memory of the Doctor, and thus their fear of him is probably the most catastrophic blow ever struck to the Daleks (and yes that counts their multiple near extinctions), as now the single biggest factor in why the Daleks were ever so powerful and dangerous has been permanently removed. Without it they are just another race of wannabe universal conquerors.
Normally it’s frowned upon for a character to acknowledge the camera in a series that doesn’t usually do that, but this episode pulls off two such moments in quick succession without making them seem cheesy, gimmicky, pandering, or self-indulgent (well, maybe a bit of that last one). Given how the character endears herself to the audience, Oswin’s quick final glance at the camera after saying “And remember” is less a distraction and more of a conspiratorial wink. And when the Doctor leans out of the TARDIS and says “Fellas, you’re never gonna stop asking” directly to the camera (and by extension the viewer) as hundreds of Daleks chant “Doctor who?!” in the background, any negative reaction to breaking the fourth wall is probably offset by the sheer squee-worthiness of the moment.
Also from "Asylum of the Daleks", the Doctor has a roomful of Ax Crazy(even by their standards) Daleks coming at him. How does he deal with this? He notices the front one has no weapon, so he provokes it into activating its self-destruct as a way of killing him, and then starts fiddling around with its machinery. The Dalek tells him the self-destruct can't be stopped. He replies he wasn't trying to, he was looking for the "reverse". The Dalek then starts helplessly reversing, straight into its comrades, and the unstoppable self-destruct goes off, clearing the room. Later, Rory goes through the same room, and we get the exchange that puts the cherry on top: Rory: "Who killed all these Daleks?" Doctor: "Who d'ya think?"
Early in the episode, the Doctor states his intention to fix Amy and Rory's marriage, which Amy declares is "not something you can fix like your bow tie." Later in the episode, the Doctor maneuvers events so that the Ponds fix their marriage. Cut to a shot of the Doctor, adjusting his bow tie, as if to say "challenge completed."
To put the icing on the cake, Eleven is the only Doctor who snarks off at the Daleks and gets away with it. "You know me, the Doctor. The Predator. The Oncoming Storm."
Dinosaurs on a Spaceship: The Doctor refusing to help Solomon off his ship before sending it off to be hit by missiles is probably the kind of thing that should concern viewers, but considering all he had done... kind of hard not to root for the Doctor on this.
A Town Called Mercy: During the Gunslinger's hunt for Kahler Jex, Jex flees to his spaceship outside of town. Instead of escaping into space just as he and the Doctor planned, he decides then to set his ship to self-destruct to atone for his past mistakes.
After Kahler Jex dies, the Gunslinger feels he is but a weapon without a purpose and decides to go self-destruct in the desert. The Doctor convinces the Gunslinger otherwise and makes him the new Marshall of Mercy, complete with his very own badge and a new-found sense of purpose.
Using some of his regeneration to fix River's wrist in "The Angels Take Manhattan". Proof that he loves her.
That moment is immediately followed by another one. The Doctor pulls another Tesselecta type robot switcheroo trick on Ms. Kizlet.
Prior to that, the Doctor using Hollywood Hacking to recover Clara's stolen consciousness.
Three Words: Under My Protection.
At the climax of "The Rings of Akhaten", the Doctor tries to defeat the sentient sun by force-feeding the parasitic sun over a thousand years worth of his bad memories, and gives a speech of epic proportions about the many terrors he has seen in his long life.
The Doctor:"Oh, you like to think you're a god, but you're not a god! You're just a parasite eaten out with jealous and envy and longing for the lives of others. You feed on them. On the memory of love and loss and birth and death and joy and sorrow. So... so come on, then. Take mine. Take my memories. But I hope you’ve got a big appetite, because I've lived a long life, and I've seen a few things. I walked away from the Last Great Time War. I marked the passing of the Time Lords. I saw the birth of the universe and I watched as time ran out, moment by moment, until nothing remained. No time. No space. Just me! I've walked in universes where the laws of physics were devised by the mind of a MAD... MAN. I've watched universes freeze and creations burn. I have seen things you wouldn’t believe. I have lost things you'll never understand! And I know things. Secrets that must never be told. Knowledge that must never be spoken. Knowledge that will make parasite gods BLAZE!SO COME OOOOON THEN! TAKE IT! TAKE IT ALL, BABY! HAVE IT! YOU HAVE IT ALL!"
His Rousing Speech to Merry about how she's a unique combination of elements millions of years in the making.
The Doctor forcing a rather ruthless bunch of scavengers to help him search the TARDIS for Clara in "Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS":
The Doctor: I just activated the TARDIS self-destruct system. One hour until this ship blows. Don't try to leave, the TARDIS is in lockdown, I'll open those doors when Clara's by my side.
Bram: You crazy lunatic!
The Doctor: My ship, my rules!
Gregor: You'll kill us all, and the girl.
The Doctor: She's going to die if you don't help me. Don't get into a spaceship with a mad man, didn't anyone ever teach you that? OK, a little gentle persuasion. Say, 30 minutes.
Bram: We'll die even quicker now!
The Doctor: You'll perform better under pressure. Anybody wanna go for 15 minutes?
Made even better by the later revelation that he's bluffing, and the TARDIS still doesn't have a self-destruct.
"Nightmare in Silver" has The Doctor defeating a Cyber-Planner (referring to itself as Mr. Clever) which had taken up residence in his own head, by playing a rather unusual game of chess.
In "The Name of the Doctor", Clara jumping into the Doctor's timestream, reincarnating herself throughout time and space to protect him from the Great Intelligence. Among other things, she advises the First Doctor which TARDIS to steal.
To save her, the Doctor jumps in after her, crossing his own timestream.
Doctor Who has an unprecedented Continuity Cavalcade in "The Name of the Doctor", showing all of them as Clara and the Doctor travel through the latter's timeline. This culminates in the big moment of the episode, where it's revealed that John Hurt is playing an incarnation of the Doctor, one who performed an act so reprehensible that the other Doctors refuse to acknowledge it.
Companions and Allies
Using her singing voice to save Rory, Amy and everyone on board that ship with the help of a broken screwdriver.
In "Remembrance of the Daleks", apart from her big moment, she also killed another Dalek by shooting it in the face with a rocket launcher.
The Doctor: You destroyed it! Ace: I aimed for the eyepiece.
Ace also had this moment in "Silver Nemesis".
The Doctor: Ace, I don't suppose you've totally ignored my instructions and secretly concocted any Nitro-9 have you? Ace: What if I had? The Doctor: Then of course you wouldn't do anything so insanely dangerous as carry it around with you? Ace: Of course not. I'm a good girl, I do what I'm told. The Doctor: Excellent. Blow up that vehicle.
Ace spent the climax of the plot shooting gold coins with a slingshot to kill (almost) all the Cybermen.
In Dragonfire it looks like she is about to mark herself with the coin that marks people as belonging to the Big Bad — and then she knocks it away and threatens him with Nitro-9.
Ace: Do you want to argue with a can of deodorant that registers nine on the Richter Scale?
Beating the Red Leech that destroyed her life to a bloody pulp.
Before that, getting the courage to stand up to her mother. She screams at her and even goes so far as to beat her with her cane. It's both terrifying and incredibly therepeutic.
Rescuing the Doctor from the 'reject pile'. She know perfectly well that her mother would hate her for it, and her mother's opinion of her is the only thing she cares about—but she saved him anyway, not even knowing who he was. Because she could, and she know what it was like to be rejected, and she has it in her to be splendid.
At the end, being brave enough to not let her mother's tyranny ruin any more of her life; she's going to do something with her life, and has even found enough confidence to refer to herself as a 'bright young lady' where before she had only ever called herself by derogatory terms.
"The Waters of Mars": When Adelaide realizes the Doctor won't recognize that he's gone too far, she kills herself to fix the timeline in place. Watching the Doctor's sudden realization of what he just did is very satisfying, after his prior speech.
Even Adric gets his MoAs, despised as he is. How about "Warriors' Gate," wherein, as Rorvik and his men are about to blow the Doc and Romana away, he calls to them from the doorway where he's suddenly appeared and covering them with the MZ Cannon and advises them to drop their weapons? Just awesome cool from the Alzarian nerd.
Adric: I don't know what these levers do, but it's pointing in your direction.
Even if you disliked him, his final scenes were quite impressive, crunching numbers like that in an effort to save Earth, knowing full well what was going to happen to him if he failed, which it's pretty clear he knew was highly likely, and tricking the others into getting away without him.
"The Beast Below". Amy one-ups the Doctor in Awesomeness by Analysis, subverts the Doctor's plan to Take a Third Option, manhandles the Queen of England, saves everyone, and restores the Doctor's faith in humanity, all in her first time off-planet and while wearing her nightie.
Amy: Raggedy Man, I remember you, and you are LATE for my wedding!
To sum it up nicely: Amy flat-out orders reality to give her back her Doctor, and it does. Not with a begrudging "Why should I?" or even a permissive "Very well, here you go." The totality of existence is officially Amy Pond's bitch.
Dressing as a pirate just for the hell of it, and swordfighting.
A really subtle one in Closing Time, but after she and the Doctor part ways, we can see that she picked herself up, re-acclimated to the world, and moved on with her life. Considering Ten's record with companions, that's a serious accomplishment, especially considering where she started out.
In "The Wedding Of River Song", saving Rory when the Silence are about to kill him.
Amy: River Song didn't get it all from you, sweetie.
"The Angels Take Manhattan":
"Raggedy Man, goodbye." - It shows just how much she's grown as a character, and that unlike a lot of companions, she's gotten over her dependence on The Doctor, particularly because she's making the choice to spend the rest of her life with Rory in a completely different time setting, knowing she will die without ever seeing The Doctor again, and does so almost instantly.
In "The Daleks' Master Plan", Ancient Egyptians stop a Badass Dalek by blocking its way with rocks.
ROCKS. The Daleks are killing machines and nearly unstoppable, and they stopped one with ROCKS.
Being the first person to have the "let's slap something on the Dalek's eye" idea in "The Daleks"
Verbally bitchslapping the Doctor in "The Edge of Destruction", which directly led to the Doctor's very first Took a Level in Kindness moment when he apologised to her for being a git.
Most of this episode was just Barbara being awesome, actually. It was, after all, she who more or less figured out what was wrong, remained calm at blade point, and was the only one to keep a level head most of the episode.
Smashing the Brains of Morphoton in "The Keys of Marinus"
Holding an Aztec priest at knifepoint in "The Aztecs"
Running down Daleks with a truck in "The Dalek Invasion of Earth"
Then there was the time in "The Dalek Invasion of Earth" that she dredged up every bit of history she could call to mind to make the Daleks think the entire human race was in revolt, worldwide, and get them in a panic.
Destroying the Animus in "The Web Planet"
In "The Crusade", Ian spends three episodes trying to get to Barbara to rescue her, and by the time he finally meets up with her she's already rescued herself and is on her way home.
Successfully fast-talking at least one villain into temporarily sparing their lives...
Essentially, the first two seasons could have been renamed The Why Barbara is Awesome Show, and no one would have noticed. She strode through time in sensible shoes, wearing the Bouffant of Doom...
Ben and Polly
Ben, Polly and Jamie blasting the Cybermen with various solvents made from nail polish remover in "The Moonbase".
Ben breaking free of the Controller Macra's hypnosis and blowing him up in "The Macra Terror".
Bret Vyon (a pre-Brigadier Nicholas Courtney) gets one for being the only man in the universe to ever tell the First Doctor to "shut up" and get away with it.
In his first appearance, the Unfazed Everyman decides to pilot the spaceship even though he doesn't fully understand it.
The Destroyer: "Pitiful. Can this world do no better than you as their champion?" Brigadier: "Probably. I just do the best I can." (Opens fire.)
While it's a tough call, and the Doctor is not happy, the Brig taking out the Silurian base in "Doctor Who and the Silurians" to protect Earth was quite badass.
The Brigadier may be more admirable than Rory. Though Rory is Uber-Badastic himself, the Brigadier hasn't had 1894 years of practise and knows he has only one life. Yet he does the best he can. If the Brigadier had Rory's experience, he could scare the Beast back into the pit.
The last few moments of Inferno. The Doctor has called him a "pompous, self-opinionated idiot" as he thinks he can leave Earth and then reappeared after transporting himself only as far as a rubbish dump. He asks the Brigadier for help getting the TARDIS console back and the Brigadier just says "Pompous, self-opinionated idiot, I believe you said, Doctor?" It feels so awesome the way the Doctor is taken down with the Brigadier acting so straight-faced. Doubles as a Crowning Moment of Funny.
Canton Everett Delaware III
In Day of the Moon, one of the Silence starts on a speech about how they have always been on Earth and have no need for weapons, while Amy can be heard screaming for help in the background, Delaware simply pulls out his gun and shoots it with the words "Welcome to America", before running to find Amy.
With no shame and no hesitation, in 1969, Canton informs the President of the United States — Richard fucking Nixon! — that he wants to marry a black man. The man has balls of titanium.
And despite being from 1969, he's able to use Amy's cell phone to record one of the Silence essentially telling humanity to kill them all.
Really it's not all that complicated, you just press a few buttons but be damned if he didn't have nerves of steel in that scene anyway.
Not forgetting the fact that with a little help from the Doctor he managed to successfully con the entire American government (with the possible exception of Nixon) while acting like he was leading the hunt to track down the Doctor's companions.
From "The Deadly Assassin": Castellan Spandrell, the most sensible and wise of the time lords appearing in this story, is completely peaceful, collected and reasonable through the entirety of the serial... that is, until a guard who was under the Master's influence tried to kill the Doctor, at which point Spandrell shot him without skipping a beat.
Clara Oswin Oswald
Resisted Dalek conversion of her mind and held onto her humanity for at least a year, possibly longer.
Single-handedly wipes any and all memory of The Doctor from the collective memory of the Daleks, consequently making them much less of a threat to the universe, as they no longer have a nemesis whom they strive to overtake.
"My name is Oswin Oswald. I fought the Daleks, and I am human. Remember me."
Her return as Clara Oswin Oswald in The Snowmen has her snap The Doctor out of a very deep funk after the loss of Amy and Rory.
In The Bells of Saint Johns, she shows a remarkable degree of Genre Savvy, and uses her recently acquired Hollywood Hacking abilities to bypass the computer security of the Big Bad, instead using the lower level security of the laptops and snapping shots of all of the employees, then using recognition software to locate their place of work.
In "The Rings of Akhaten", despite feeding on the Doctor's 1000-plus years of memories, the Old God is still hungry. What does Clara do? Makes it implode by force-feeding it a leaf. A single leaf containing the memories, hopes, and dreams of her mother, proving that while the Doctor has a plethora of memories to feed off of, nothing beats the infinite possibilities of the many could-have-beens of a single person.
In "Hide," she flies the TARDIS into a pocket universe doomed to collapse to rescue the Doctor. Twice.
In "The Crimson Horror" - the Doctor has a sonic screwdriver, but Clara has a chair.
She took command of a military unit and took a swing at a Cyberman with a mace in "Nightmare in Silver".
In "The Name of The Doctor", Clara leaps into the Doctor's timeline at the potential cost of her own life, scattering copies of herself throughout to foil the Great Intelligence at every turn. In short, literally every good thing the Doctor has or will do, including stealing the TARDIS in the first place'', is thanks to Clara making sure they happen.
In "The Poison Sky", Col. Mace leads UNIT in a truly awesome attack on the Sontarans.
"The Sontarans might think of us as primitive, as does every passing species with an axe to grind. They make a mockery of our weapons, our soldiers, our ideals, but no more. From this point on it stops. From this point on, the people of Earth fight back. And we show them, we show the warriors of Sontar what the human race can do."
Right before introducing two bullets to a Sontaran's head:
A doctor in at least his sixties, being the last person left in Albion Hospital who has not succumbed to the Empty Child virus, staying there to look after his patients, fully knowing there is absolutely nothing he can do for them and risking almost certain zombification which happens shortly after he is introduced.
Dr Constantine: Before this war began I was a father and a grandfather. Now I'm neither, but I'm still a doctor.
"The Fires Of Pompeii," where Donna convinces the Doctor, after being forced into a horrible Sadistic Choice ( Pompeii or the world) to go back.
Donna: "Please. Not the whole town...just save someone."
Bonus points because she motivates him to save an entire family from Vesuvius.
Even better, in the same episode, when she realizes that the Doctor has to pull the lever and destroy Pompeii, what does she do? She doesn't just support him in his decision; even better, she pulls the lever WITH him. She shoulders the guilt of killing hundreds of people with him.
In "The Sontaran Stratagem," Donna gets to come into her own thanks to her experience as a "supertemp" and wring a salute out of the ranking UNIT officer present.
Donna Noble in "The Poison Sky" knocking out a Sontaran. "Back of the neck!"
Donna finally going through with Rose's plan at the end of "Turn Left."
Three Words: The Doctor-Donna. Seriously, watching her gleefully dismantle Davros's entire plan within the span of one minute is possibly the biggest joy of watching Journey's End.
One from "City of Death": Duggan punching Scaroth in the face, which prevents the latter from stopping his past self from blowing up his ship and giving the spark of life to the amniotic fluid from which all life on Earth will spring. In other words, that one punch allowedlife on Earth to happen at all. Immediately followed by the Doctor's hilarious:
The Doctor: "Duggan...that was probably the most important punch in history!"
Father Octavian, a oneshot character from the two-parter "The Time of Angels / Flesh and Stone," had perhaps the most dignified death in the history of the show. Faced with the imminent and inevitable prospect of being killed by the Weeping Angel which has its arms around his neck, he keeps hold of his convictions and remains utterly, touchingly calm.
Octavian: There's no way out. You have to leave me.
The Doctor: You can't wriggle out?
Octavian: No, it's too tight. You have to leave me, sir, there's nothing you can do. [...] Now please, you have to go. It's your duty to your friends. [...] Sir, the Angels are coming, you have to leave me.
The Doctor: You'll die.
Octavian: I will die in the knowledge that my courage did not desert me at the end. For that I thank God, and bless the path that takes you to safety.
Ianto:(after being handed a gun by Gwen) Those don't work against Daleks. Gwen: Yeah? I'm going out fighting. Like Owen. Like Tosh. How about you? Ianto: Yes ma'am.
Harriet Jones, former Prime Minister, gets hers in "The Stolen Earth", when she's about to die.
Harriet Jones:Harriet Jones, former Prime Minister. Dalek: Yes, we know who you are. Harriet Jones: Oh, you know nothing of any human, and that will be your downfall.
Harriet Jones had one in her very first appearance, when the Slitheen were about to go for Rose, she leaps out from her cover yelling 'Take me first!' Obviously the Doctor appears to save them, but it's one of those tiny characterisation moments that really shows you how good she could be.
She gets another at the end of that episode, when she flat out orders the Doctor to stop the Slitheen, even though his plan puts them all at risk. Especially impressive is that it's the first time her Catch Phrase is treated as something more serious than a Running Gag.
Harriet: Harriet Jones, MP for Flydale North. Elected by the people, for the people. And on behalf of the people, I command you Doctor. Do it.
It's subtle here, but it's an awesome moment crossed with a Heartwarming Moment with some Fridge Awesome in hindsight. Nine would not have gone against Jackie's wishes, as he personally did not want to be responsible for any harm that would come to her daughter, and Harriet realized he did not want the burden of Rose's blood on his hands, so she, in a Donna Noble "Fires Of Pompeii" moment, ordered him to commence his plan on behalf of the British people by virtue of her being the highest ranking legitimate governing authority present, thus pinning all the blame on herself if everything went wrong. Or, in short, she proved she was the perfect politician to be Prime Minister by being willing to take responsibility for her actions, regardless of their consequences.
Creating fire in "100,000 BC."
And from the same serial, stopping the First Doctor from killing the caveman with a rock.
Passing himself off as a Dalek in "The Daleks."
Hauling Ping-Cho home with all the assorted problems that escapade caused, in "Marco Polo".
Defeating an Aztec warrior in "The Aztecs."
For a Secondary School science teacher, Ian kicked preposterous amounts of arse. Just watch him beat the ever-loving crap out of the guards in "The Space Museum."
Though when you think about it, a male Secondary School teacher in his late 30's/early 40's in 1963 would almost certainly have performed some kind of active military service.
If you think about it, Isaac, the Marshall of Mercy, is everything that The Doctor has ever hoped to see and foster in humanity. Here's a man who runs a town where all are welcome, regardless of race, color, creed, planet of origin, or past misdeeds. He barely even knows The Doctor, and still performs a Heroic Sacrifice to save him.
Captain Jack Harkness
"The Doctor Dances". First, stopping a German bomb seconds before it plows into the rest of the cast, then saying his farewells while straddled atop it (popping back once to compliment Rose on her shirt). Later on his ship, on learning the bomb's detonation (and his death) is pretty much unavoidable, he nonchalantly orders himself a martini and reminisces in what appear to be his last moments. Then to top it all off, the camera pulls away from him, past the bomb...and through the TARDIS doors. WIN.
It also is a subtle Establishing Character Moment. Jack mentions earlier on he's worried that the part of his life he's missing may be clues he was a horrible person, and he seriously fears that may be the case, so when the Doctor got him to stop that bomb, it also counts as a CMOA for the Doctor in not only giving Jack a chance to make sure an act of unquestioned moral virtue is forever a part of his personal history, but it's a CMOA for Jack later on, as he found his own actions would kill him 100% that he decided not to curse the Doctor for what happened, but instead decided to allow himself to die with a good deed as his last living act, proving that whatever person he was during those missing two years of his life, he's ultimately a heroic person. And thanks to Rose, his Redemption Earns Life.
"Bad Wolf": Captain Jack Harkness producing a concealed laser pistol while completely naked and destroying the makeover droids.
And then a little after when he figures out the Daleks' plan:
Jack: Doctor, Rose is still alive!
Jack's death (for the first time, anyway) in "Parting of the Ways." After fighting down to his last bullet, he coolly stands and faces a troop of Daleks, holding out his arms ready for the attack:
"Utopia": Jack's reintroduction, holding onto the edge of the TARDIS, through the Time Vortex, while it desperately tries to shake it off. This is awesome for two reasons; Firstly because exposure to the Time Vortex is lethal to damn near everything else, but secondly because the TARDIS travels right through to the end of the universe before it's finally forced to land. In other words, the TARDIS ran out of universe to go through, before Jack was willing to let go.
Perhaps this may be part of the reason the TARDIS later seems more willing to permit Jack onboard, since this act showed a ton of loyalty towards the Doctor, in that Jack would risk being killed or stranded anywhere rather than lose his chance to see the Doctor again
"Last of the Time Lords": Jack spending an entire year enduring being repeatedly tortured to death by the Master and still not breaking.
In "The Parting of the Ways", just after Mickey's mini car fails to break open the TARDIS, Jackie arrives with a large tow-truck to help.
Jamie's last scene is easily one of his most Bad Ass. After the Time Lords return him to the battlefield where he met the Doctor, he wakes up to a Redcoat shooting him. His response to this is to charge the Redcoat with sword - and the Redcoat turns around and runs for his life.
"The Doctor's Daughter":
Jenny: "Whatcha you going to do? Tell my dad?"
Jenny making it through the beams via epic gymnastic skills.
Perfectly ordinary parlormaid from Victorian London not only isn't afraid of Vastra (who ate Jack the Ripper, this cannot be overemphasized) but manages to both keep up with her in terms of badassery, and get an ancient Silurian warrior who used to hate humanity to fall in love with her.
"Now, dear. Which button controls the lights?"
Dual-wields katanas on a daily basis.
A minor but brilliant nod to the fact that Jenny is very much the Great Detective's full partner in awesomeness—she immediately recognized that Clara's behavior was more than just odd, and managed to deduce that she had met the Doctor (admittedly not difficult given that she was yelling "DOCTOR!" at a tree), calm her down, peg her as Companion material and get her set up to meet the Doctor again in only a few minutes.
"Just when you think your favorite lock-picking Victorian chambermaid is never going to turn up...! Jenny!"
"Right, we need a plan..." "Plan later. This one's on me!"
Cue Jenny going from 'formal Victorian' to 'ass-kicking ninja suit' and beating the tar out of everyone in the immediate vicinity.
And that is just after she smacks the Doctor silly for kissing her without permission.
Infiltrating Sweetville, alone, with no way of contacting anyone for help if something goes wrong. Considering she knew perfectly well what happened to the last undercover investigators...
And single-handedly rescuing the Doctor while she's at it!
Jo owns the Master in "The Time Monster". He's completely failed to hypnotise the Atlantean king and is being led away by guards. His one consolation is that at least he's killed the Doctor. So when the Doctor and Jo show up, he's literally speechless. And Jo prompts him "How about 'Curses! Foiled again!'?"
She gets an earlier one in "Day of the Daleks," when she rescues the Doctor from an Ogron by knocking it out with a wine bottle.
When the Doctor is all "come with me" she calls him on the way death and destruction follows in his wake. "If you hadn't come here, would anyone have died?" Instead of being oh so dazzled by his awesomeness, she spoke up for the people who get left behind (like Harriet Jones tried to before). It's fine that he was trying to be kind to the Family of Blood and all, but by saving them (rather than just giving them a quick death and being done with it) how many more people ended up dead?
"The Family of Blood": John Smith, the Doctor's alternate personality, is brave enough to sacrifice himself for the greater good of a cause he knows next to nothing about (although he probably realized it was the only way to stop the psychotic aliens).
Joan (to Doctor): He was braver than you, in the end. You chose to change. He chose to die.
John Smith raises a rifle, looks down the sights... Then realizes he can't do it. The Doctor is THAT opposed to using guns that he won't use them when he can't even remember who he is!
John Smith instinctively grabbing a cricket ball and bowling it, thus causing a chain reaction which prevents a mother and her child from being killed by a falling piano. While this sort of thing would be easy to the Doctor with his Time Lord senses, keep in mind, he's still meant to be biologically human at this point! Whatever the species, the Doctor cannot help being a Big Damn Hero!
Even more awesome because K9, as always, sounds so damn smug.
Beforehand, the tiny dog taking down all those Krillitanes almost single-handedly.
"We are in a car".
In "The Talons of Weng-Chiang", Leela taking on Magnus Greel.
When we are both in the Great Hereafter, I will hunt you down, Bent-Face! And put you through my agonies a thousand times!
"The Invisible Enemy":
Leela: I've worked out how to stop them. Fourth Doctor: Oh. Leela: Stab them in the neck!
And in "The Invasion Of Time", just after being told a Sontaran's weakness, throwing a knife the full length of a decent sized room straight into a 5mm "probic vent".
Liz X, Guns Akimbo, takes out the Smilers in "The Beast Below", with the immortal quip "I'm the bloody queen, mate. Basically? I rule." The Doctor is quite impressed, as he should be. One of the best Establishing Character Moments in the new series.
Lucy Saxon in "The End of Time". Yes, that moment: "TILL DEATH DO US PART, HARRY!"
Entered the series by revealing she just ate Jack the Ripper. Ate him. That is all.
SHE ATE JACK THE RIPPER.
The most infamous and brutal serial killer in Victorian Times, and SHE ATE HIM. Someone give her a massive round of applause.
Dual-wielding katanas back-to-back with her future wife.
Let's not forget: "The child. At all costs, protect the child!"
She also gets in a polite but very firm rebuke when the Doctor starts to let his temper get the best of him. "Anger is always the shortest route to a mistake."
From The Snowmen, the One Word Test, which it's implied she invented. That scene is just concentrated awesome for both her and Clara.
On a meta level: "I resent the implication of impropriety! We are married."
"Good evening, I'm a lizard woman from the dawn of time and this is my wife." Points for sheer matter-of-fact ballsiness.
In the Doctor Who universe, she was Arthur Conan Doyle's inspiration for Sherlock Holmes.
Without her, the people in the Doctor Who Universe wouldn't be reading about him today. And the Doctor wouldn't be able to do his Sherlock impersonation either.
"There are two beverages in your world the color of red wine. This is not red wine."
Vastra is a fan of the dramatic reveal.
Vastra: I have seen these symptoms before...A long time ago...
Coroner: Oh aye? How long?
Vastra:*turns to reveal her face, smirking* About 65 million years.
A woman from 1941 manages to get the better of three trained people from the future, all with weapons, using just fake tears and a pistol. She then pilots a Humongous Mecha through the forest in search of her children. The fact that she eventually crashes it does nothing to lessen the awesomeness.
Heck, her awesomeness doesn't end there. She braves an acid rain storm and emerges unscathed, is chosen to be the vessel for the trees, pilots the ship, saving the Doctor, her children, and an entire species! And then she resuces her husband. Essentially, the 2011 Christmas Special could've been renamed The Why Madge Is Awesome Show and no one would have noticed. She even manages to make its official title, The Doctor, the Widow, and the Wardrobe, a bit of a Non Indicative Title.
In "The Family of Blood", when told black women will never be doctors, and she proceeds to list every bone in the human hand. Surely an MOA for Freema Agyeman simply for being able to do that, let alone Martha totally owning the stuffy matron.
Martha's Moment of Awesome has to be when, after two episodes of effortless pwning absolutely everyone (including the Doctor and the immortal Captain Jack), the Master has her imprisoned, kneeling at his feet... and she laughs at him.
"A gun? A gun in four parts? You really believed that?"
And then, she reveals that she has just saved the entire world, even the bits the Master already killed (except the President, but he was a jackass), by telling people a story. Neil Gaiman must love that.
From "The Doctor's Daughter", delivered after relocating the shoulder of a Hath soldier under gunpoint-
Martha:"Now then, I'm Doctor Martha Jones. Who the hell are you?"
In "Journey's End", she not only blackmails Davros by holding the destruction of Earth (and all Davros' plans) in her hands, but while she's doing that, she tells the Doctor to shut up.
No love for her epic sequence in 42? While the doctor desperately fights against takeover by the living sun, Martha sprints down what has to be the longest ship in history, which is also spiralling into the sun (with approximately a minute and a half left on the "time until death" counter) to the engine room and orders the last surviving crewmembers to dump all the fuel.
Riley: What? Martha: Sun particles in the fuel, get rid of them! … Martha: Do it.NOW!!
Off-screen, during the Year that Never Was, she did such deeds as going to Shipyard #1 in Russia, walking across radiation pits in Europe, being the only person to leave the burning islands of Japan alive, getting her hands on a disk telling exactly how to kill a Toclophane, and finding the parts for a fake gun. And her only defense? A low-level perception filter, that doesn't even really hide her.
In The Doctor's Daughter, she is completely unfazed by the radioactive surface of the planet, and convinces her Hath friend to accompany her across.
How about Martha being genuinely happy the Doctor found Rose, despite her previous (well-earned, really, as Rose was a large part of why Martha was constantly (inadvertently and unintentionally) put down by the Doctor, constantly made to feel inferior, and why half the fanbase seems to her) dislike of Rose? Heartwarming AND Awesome.
Hell, Martha spent a long while being treated as or feeling inferior, even without Human Nature/Family of Blood, but she still stayed strong and in the end, she realised she was not inferior, neither to Rose nor the Doctor, and left.
Mickey Smith spends most of his time as second-fiddle, but he's had a couple of MoAs. Did you realize that he blew up Downing Street with a submarine missile from his flat? When the Master talks about Downing Street being rebuilt? That's because it took the British Government two seasons to get over Mickey.
Mickey's entire character development arc over series 1 and 2 was nothing but one long CMoA.
Minnie the Menace groping the Doctor in "The End of Time".
In "The Doctor Dances", verbally bitch-slapping the guy whose house she broke into. "Oh look, there's the sweat on your brow."
Suffering from mental trauma from finding out he's not the Doctor, that the Cybermen killed his wife (and did something else he can't remember), he straps on a bandoleer of fancy thumbdrives (called 'infostamps') and charges into battle, using them to destroy the Cybermen and rescue the Doctor. Sweet Jesus, for someone who wasn't the Doctor, Lake really is a massively awesome Badass Normal.
Jackson Lake leading the crowd in cheering the 10th Doctor after he saves the day.
While her portrayal in later episodes prevented her from being endlessly adored by the fans, Peri looked very promising as a companion after verbally owning the Master of all people in this memorable exchange:
The Master: You will obey me. I am the Master! Peri: So what? I'm Perpugilliam Brown, and I can shout as loud as you can!
Surviving crewman Phipps roasting an Ice Warrior in "The Seeds of Death".
In "The Crusade", when Princess Joanna learns of her brother King Richard I's plan to marry her off to Saphadin without her knowing beforehand, she basically bites his head off. Remember, this is a medieval king she's bawling out in front of the men. Sister or no, that took guts.
Queen Victoria got one in "Tooth and Claw" when she pulled a pistol out of her handbag and shot the leader of the monks.
Monk: Oh, I don't think so, woman. Queen Victoria: The correct form of address is "Your Majesty"! *BANG*
Reinette telling the entire Royal Court of Versailles to get a hold of themselves, while facing down unstoppable killer clockwork robots:
Reinette: "Would everyone just please calm down. Such a commotion, such distressing noise! Kindly remember that this is Versailles. This is the royal court, and we are French. I have made a decision. And my decision is no. I have seen your world, and I do not desire to set foot there again." Clockwork Droid: "We do not require your feet."
"The Time of Angels": River Song opened the hatch door and blew herself into space just in time to be saved by the Doctor. Yes.
River: As I said on the dance floor... you might want to find something to hang onto.
River Song's opening adventure in "The Pandorica Opens". She hears the Doctor may be in trouble, so she busts out of her prison, steals a painting, procures a Vortex Manipulator, writes the first words on the first planet in existence as a message to the Doctor, and then bluffs her way into a Roman camp by making the soldiers think she was Cleopatra. A little Hallucinogenic Lipstick goes a long way!
"Day of the Moon": Mowing down at least eight Silent creatures by firing her gun while whirling rapidly in a circle, then holstering it and quipping "I hope my old man didn't see that, he gets ever so cross..." (possible foreshadowing) When Rory asks her "Just what sort of doctor ARE you?" She replies, "Archaeology," ...and shoots a Silent that was creeping up on her without looking! And then finishes it all off with "love a tomb." Bad. Ass.
How do you shoot a Silent that's behind you? I don't know, but River Song is awesome enough to pull it off.
For those reading those spoilers but not getting what the big deal is: the moment you take your eyes off of one of the Silence, you completely forget about them. River wasn't just shooting something she couldn't see, she shot something she literally could not have even known was there.
If you pay attention to Rory, you'll notice his alarmed expression when he sees a Silence creeping up behind River's back. River can shoot the Silence because she. sees. her. daddy's. face.
"The Big Bang": River faces down the Stone Dalek. She informs it that its shields are compromised, and that one blast from her gun will kill it stone dead. The Dalek replies that its records show that, as an associate of the Doctors, she will show mercy. Her reply? "I'm River Song. Check your records again." And with that one line, the Dalek literally begs for mercy. Three times.
"RIVER MAKE HER BLUE AGAIN!!!" In "The Impossible Astronaut", the Doctor cloaks the TARDIS in the Oval Office, and orders River to decloak her when he's tackled by secret service agents, dumbfounding everyone, including President Nixon himself.
"A Good Man Goes To War": Breaking into Stormcage to go back to her cell after having an adventure with the Doctor, letting the guards know it was her, and topping it off with a casual order of breakfast for the next morning.
Bringing the Doctor to task and telling him that every death at Demon's Run is a result of his ego.
Everything she did in "Let's Kill Hitler" qualifies really. Melody Pond regenerates, poisons the Doctor, then jumps out of a window and insults the Nazis. They shoot her. It doesn't work. She then steals a motorbike and drops in on a fancy lunch and demands people relinquish their clothes. When the dying Doctor arrives and Melody performs a Heel Face Turn, she gives up her regenerations to save him. Quite good for her first day out.
"The Wedding of River Song": River disintegrates reality to send out a beacon to all points of time and space simultaneously with the message, "The Doctor is dying. Please, please help." She is answered by a million million voices, saying, "Yes, of course we will!" She then proceeds to tell the Doctor in question that she did so just so she could tell him that "...you are loved by so much, and so many - and by no one more than me." To sum up: River Song disintegrates reality to tell the Doctor how much she loves him, saving his life in the process, and then proceeds to marry him. She seems to take a cue from her mother there: neither of them are willing to be parted from the men they love.
In "The Angels Take Manhattan," she breaks her own wrist, and then lies about it, just to give the Doctor some hope.
Romana has her Moment of Awesome at the climax of "The Armageddon Factor", where she stops the Doctor from becoming a monstrous universal dictator by shouting at him.
Then there's the "despicable worm" scene and a good part of "The Horns of Nimon."
Her arrival on Skonnos is pretty damn impressive. Soldeed comes out to greet the latest shipment and the co-pilot immediately calls out Romana as the source of all the trouble. Then she butts in and tells her side of the story. Not only does Soldeed believe her, almost without question, but punishes the co-pilot right there for being a liar.
Or, for that matter, opening the puzzle box in "City of Death"?
In "The Armageddon Factor" when she refused to break under the Shadow's Electric Torture.
Of special note is the fact that a few of the exploits listed are completely true. The universe was destroyed after attempting to erase him from existence, Amy married him after he shot her, and he is the only human being ever to not be mind-blown upon first entering the TARDIS.
"The Big Bang": Auton-Rory deploying his Arm Cannon on a Dalek.
Dalek: INTRUDER-IS-UNARMED. Rory: Oh, you think? (BANG)
His earlier exchange with The Doctor was also awesome.
Doctor: Why do you have to be so... human? Rory: Because right now I'm not.
Rory got a LOT of awesome in this episode, including single-handedly DRAGGING the Pandorica out of a building that was just bombed by Germans, punching out the Doctor and getting COMPLIMENTED for it (since it proved his humanity), and, one more thing, protecting the Pandorica all alone for just under two THOUSAND YEARS. Forget Amy, Rory is the best companion of this series.
That last part can't be overstated enough. One thousand, eight hundred and ninety four years. Conscious, the whole time. Never sleeping. Never resting. Alone, stranded in time, and with no way of knowing whether he would even last until the modern day. Probably still wracked with guilt over shooting Amy in the first place, and tasked with keeping the Pandorica safe from ANYTHING, following it wherever it went, through dozens of civilisations and countries. No reassurances, no help, no instructions other than "protect Amy". No way of healing any damage if he gets hurt, and the only weapons he has when he starts are a sword and an Arm Cannon. And he SUCCEEDS. Not only that, but when he shows up as the museum guard, there isn't a scratch on him. Not to mention the fact that he's now twice as old as the Doctor himself. Yes, Rory is definitelyBadass.
The rescue of the Pandorica from the German Blitz cannot be emphasised enough. Rory was made of plastic and still willingly risked walking into a burning building, in order to drag out the several ton box containing the woman he loved. Even Amy thought he'd perished whilst saving her.
One more thing: The Doctor indicated that if he took the slow path alone for that long, he'd very likely go insane. But did he? Nope, Rory kept it together for nearly two thousand years out of sheer dedication due to his love for Amy. If there's a poster child for The Power of Love, it's that. The fact that Arthur Darvill is returning as part of the TARDIS team once more is just icing on the cake.
The cherry on top of that icing? Next season opening credits. Actors listed: Matt Smith, Karen Gillan, Arthur Darvill. Rory Pond, you are offically a Companion, and good god have you earned that title.
Companions often call the Doctor out on dickery, pompousness, or some other questionable policy —heck, that's practically why the Companions arethere, but Rory took this time honoured tradition a step further by telling the Doctor, loudly and bluntly, exactly why he was such a huge threat to the people he travels with. Not becase he's dangerous and powerful, but because he made people a danger to themselves by making them want to impress him when other people have to live with the consequences.
No mention of his socking the Doctor in the face when he dismisses Amy as unimportant? "She is to me!". Sure, it was a ploy by the Doctor to ascertain his humanity, but look at it from Rory's POV. You are two thousand years from home, you've just discovered that you are actually a plastic being with fake memories, you were forced to kill your girlfiend, the entire universe suddenly ended, and the only guy who can possibly save it (who is also the most feared being in history) declares that doing so is more important than saving your loved one. So you punch him. Bad. Ass.
Courtesy of a bit of Fridge Horror and Fridge Brilliance. In "Day of the Moon", at the end of their three months on the run in 1969, Rory has over twice the number of tally marks on his body, implying that he's been dealing with the Silence of a nearly daily basis. Which means either two things. He's either been really unlucky... or the Silence consider him the largest threat, even more so than River, and have been sending wave after wave of mooks, in a desperate bid to eliminate him.
Crosses over with Fridge Brilliance in "The Doctor's Wife": Just when Amy is about to go into a Heroic B So D after seeing what looks like Rory's corpse, thinking that he'd gone insane and hated her for leaving him alone for so long, the real one shows up and calmly reassures her that her head's just being messed with. How would he know? Because it's been messing with him the same way, but he's managed to shrug it off. After all, what's a little Mind Rape to a man who kept himself sane and loyal for nearly two thousand years?
Word Of God from Neil Gaiman does indeed say that Rory was subjected to House's torments and that he was much better able to withstand them because of everything he's already been through.
From the trailer for "A Good Man Goes to War": "WHERE. IS. MY. WIFE?" Rory goes badass... again!
Then he spends the entire episode back in his Centurion outfit and beating headless monks with electric swords in swordfights. Beforehand he had walked on a Cybership and refused to flinch when they all raised guns his way, then again refused to flinch when over half their fleet detonated RIGHT behind him.
"Oh, don't give me those blank looks." (remember this line is directed to the Cybermen...) "Would you like me to repeat the question?"
Made even more awesome by the fact that before he shows up, the viewer just sees all hell breaking loose on a Cyber-ship, woven with shots of Amy telling Melody about the man who's coming to save them. The viewer is made to think it's The Doctor she's talking about. When she tells Melody "...your father" those watching have just enough time to blink and go "what the fu-" before Rory makes his appearance on the ship!
He's also officially too badass to look at explosions.
Come to think of it, he was also too badass to be impressed at the fact that the TARDIS was Bigger on the Insidein his first time inside it, so a wee explosion isn't going to mean much either, one supposes!
Series 6, "Let's Kill Hitler": Rory punches a fully armed and very angry Hitler in the face. Let me repeat that. Rory. Punches. Hitler. In. The. Face. Fans have made videos of this looping for ten minutes (at the minimum)
He also punches a Nazi guard by shouting "Heil!" and saluting, getting the guard to repeat it out of habit, then socking him so hard and fast the guard didn't stand a chance. Is anybody else noticing a connection? Mind you, this isn't any ordinary guard, but a shapeshifting robot.
He punches Hitler, puts him at gun point, tells him to shut up and then shoves him in a cupboard, all while sounding relatively unthreatening, which somehow makes it better. Rory Williams is the most badass thing in the history of badasses.
Keep in mind that this episode was shown shortly after the release of Captain America: The First Avenger, starring a man whose first appearance featured him punching Hitler on the cover. Rory has punched more Hitlers on-screen than Captain Freaking America.
Two moments combined for even more awesome: Rory Williams is the only person in all of creation to have decked both the Doctor and Hitler in the face. The ultimate good and the ultimate evil. One of them complimented him on it and he promptly told the other to shut up and shoved him in a closet. Just... wow.
Rory sums it up when they steal a motorcycle to chase after her robot duplicate:
Amy: Can you even ride a motorbike? Rory: I expect so. It's been that sort of a day.
Killing a robot by smashing the Mona Lisa over its head.
Earlier, his What the Hell, Hero? to the Doctor over Amy going through hell due to his not doing the proper research.
"You're turning me into you!" Gotta love Rory. Never hesitates to call the Doctor on his manipulation.
As of The God Complex, Rory Williams is officially Too Spicy for Yog Sothoth. The monster manipulates people by showing them what they're scared of. Everyone else sees rooms containing their worst fears. Rory, who has no fear left in his mind just sees... fire exits.
For those who don't catch why this makes him a badass, thanks to the way the antagonist works this means Rory not only doesn't have a terror trigger like everyone else despite all he's seen, he also has ZERO need for "faith" in anything external... including not just God/religion but the Doctor himself, since Amy's reason for being there is that her faith in the Doctor was so strong it pulled them in. Hell, Rory doesn't even "need" Amy - if we take the phlebotinum at face value the way it's explained, that means he doesn't have "faith" in Amy, he just loves her. And he will goddamn love her, and stay with her even though the complex is letting him escape. Translation: Rory is so badass, he can deal with any potential terror you could inflict on him, including all of the nightmare fuel he's run across, such as the Weeping bloody Angels. Rory is so badass that he is completely unimpressed with the Doctor. Rory is so badass, that when he decides to stick with a woman, it's not out of needy terror of being alone or blind devotion, but because he genuinely loves her and has made a conscious decision to stay by her side. And yet, despite all that self-assurance he isn't an egotistical asshole.Fridge Brilliance basically turns this little fact into an Establishing Character Moment that is equal parts Crowning Moment Of Awesome and Crowning Moment of Heartwarming. There is a reason a lot of fans like his character.
The Wedding Of River Song: He keeps his eye drive on so he can see the Silence coming so he is able to defend Amy, the Doctor and River despite the fact it can kill or at least cause the wearer crippling pain. When he's reminded it could activate at any time he says, fairly calmly but with trembling clenched fists, "It has activated, Ma'am." And this happens in a universe where Amy is just Rory's cold-hearted boss, not his wife, and doesn't even know his name. Rory is the living embodiment of the Power of Love.
In The Gunpowder Plot, Rory, stuck in orbit around Earth within the Houses of Parliament of 1605, armed with an EMP generator and a Dennis the Menace slingshot, takes out as many Rutans and Sontarans as he can. That's right, two species locked in war for millennia can't take down the Lone Centurion.
He effectively decides to Screw Destiny by committing suicide in "The Angels Take Manhattan". It works.
The Legend of Rory Williams lives on in the IDW Doctor Who comic book. In a recent story, "The Doctor and The Nurse", when Amy insisted that a squabbling Doctor and Rory spend some quality male-bonding time together, the Doctor and Rory (who was wearing a tux at the time) ended up in London during The Blitz, where they saved the life of Ian Fleming. Evidently Rory inspired the creation of James Bond!
Her first episode. She's not an Action Girl, or not supposed to be one. She SAVES THE WORLD.
"The Parting of the Ways"
When she becomes the Bad Wolf. "You are tiny. I can see the whole of time and space. Every single atom of your existence. And I divide them."
Not to forget her speech to Jackie and Mickey back on Earth.
"But it was.... it was a better life. And I don't mean the travelling, the seeing aliens and spaceships and thing, that don't matter. The Doctor showed me a better way of living your life. You know, he showed you too. That you don't just give up. You don't just let things happen, you make a stand, you say no. You have the guts to do what's right when everyone else just runs away, and I can't..."
Rose's first appearance in "The Stolen Earth": following scenes with every other surviving major character of both the series itself and its two spinoffs, Rose teleports into the middle of the street with a huge gun. Then her Unflinching Walk a bit later on. The latter is even more impressive since let's face it, if before this episode you were to figure what characters on the show would be able to pull off the Unflinching Walk, Rose would probably be pretty low on the list.
Once the Earth is taken by the Daleks she walks past a shop being looted by two goons. She points the gun at them and orders them to leave with the classic line "Do you like my gun?"
"The Satan Pit". Three words: "Go to Hell." To the devil. While throwing him into a black hole.
"The Next Doctor": The scene after they first encounter Miss Hartigan. The two Doctors turn to run. Rosita decks her in the face. The Doctor's impressed, but can't admit it:
Can I just say... that was completely inappropriate!
The Doctor points out a small but significant detail to the Master: "That guard is one inch too tall." *Rossiter cold-cocks the Master with his rifle*
Sally Sparrow had several in "Blink", such as this conversation:
Sally Sparrow: I love old places. They make me sad. Kathy Nightingale: What's so great about sad? Sally Sparrow: It's happy for deep people.
She also chastises the Doctor and forces him to explain the situation to her. He is visibly taken aback.
Sally: How?! How is this possible? Tell me! Doctor: People don't understand time, it's not what you think it is. Sally: Then what is it? Doctor: Complicated. Sally: Tell me. Doctor: Very complicated. Sally: ...I'm clever, and I'm listening, and don't patronize me because people have died and I'm not happy. Tell me.
Still taken aback, it should be noted, even though he's in 1969 and reading her side of the conversation from an autocue.
Sarah Jane Smith
In "Robot", Sarah Jane delivers a killer ice burn to the Scientific Reform Society.
"I'm sure I can find room for you ... between the flying saucer people and the Flat Earthers."
In "Pyramids of Mars" the Doctor gives her the job of shooting a pack of explosives next to Sutekh's rocket to destroy it. Even though we've never seen Sarah use a gun, she coolly tells the Doctor: "Don't worry. I won't miss." She didn't.
In "Journey's End", her speech to Davros is one of the best "surrender now to keep your ass intact, goodsir" speeches ever.
Another one just for the fact that Davros still remembers Sarah Jane after thousands of years from his point of view. Maybe that counts for RTD as well for remembering that Sarah Jane was in "Genesis of the Daleks" and managing to cram in that nod to it.
At the end of the twelve-part serial The Daleks' Master Plan, the Doctor and Steven are left standing on a barren plain that was a jungle planet only moments before. As they stand there, overlooking all the damage caused by the Time Destructor, the Doctor starts to go into a philosophic ramble about it, but Steven angrily interrupts him by listing the names of the people who were killed. This promptly shuts the Doctor up, and they walk back to the TARDIS together in somber silence. Steven may not be the most well-remembered of companions, but he certainly deserves mention for that.
Strax spends most of his time in "The Snowmen" as a bumbling sidekick whose solution for every problem is violence. But when the snowmen actually attack, you get to see just how good a military tactician he is.
I would also mention how he intentionally acted stupid ( Obfuscating Stupidity ) in order to prevent the Doctor from wiping Clara's memory, without the Doctor realizing it.
He gets two Big Damn Heroes moments in "The Crimson Horror," first charging a bunch of Mooks with a laser gun while laughing like a maniac, then appearing at the top of the chimney to order the Big Bad to stand down. He even gets her gender right!
"Drop down your weapon, human female!"
In "An Unearthly Child", Susan leaps onto a caveman's back and starts pummeling it's head when her grandfather has been captured by the tribe. Badass.
In "The Daleks", Susan finds her way back to the TARDIS alone, at night, in a storm, through a creepy petrified forest that she has been told is full of deadly mutants, in order to fetch anti-radiation medicine for the others who are dying of radiation poisoning and are being held captive by the eponymous pepperpots of doom.
"That's my TARDIS burning up. That's what's been keeping the Earth warm." Even in death, the TARDIS still keeps the Earth safe for her Doctor as long as it can.
The TARDIS burning away every part of The House inside herself.
The Doctor: Finish him off, girl. (cue House's screams as the TARDIS takes back what's rightfully hers)
Really, the entirety of "The Doctor's Wife" is just one great CMoA for our police box. Special props to when she first reveals to the Doctor who she is. She's just so smug, and the look on his face is priceless. Goes for when she explains to the Doctor that she might not be reliable, but she's always taken the Doctor where he's needed to go.
Taken in this context, one can give her some credit for almost every moment of awesome on this list, after all, she was the one that brought the Doctor and his companions to any given place and time specifically so that he or they could make a difference there.
For a device often regarded as unreliable, the TARDIS pulls off one heck of a manoeuvre in "Day Of The Moon", in which picking up River Song requires her to materialise within a timeframe of a few seconds, in mid-air, several storeys up, and oriented on her side.
Crashing down from the ceiling in "The Almost People."
In "Boom Town" she literally rewrites an alien's biology so she can become a child again, and have a second lease on life. That's pretty cool.
How about in 'The Parting of the Ways' where she takes it one step further, literally bonding her heart with Rose Tyler to make the Bad Wolf, and they work together to destroy every Dalek and restore Captain Jack Harkness to life?
In "Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS" she manages to defend herself admirably even when crippled by the Van Baalans, a crew of salvagers. When one is climbing down a ladder to take her apart, she zaps him with a piece of exposed wiring, sending him crashing down a ladder. When Gregor steals a pod she uses to make new parts, she simply makes the door to the room disappear. Additionally, she constantly reworks her own architecture to confuse the salvagers and lure the burnt zombies towards them. Even when at her weakest, the TARDIS is still a force to be reckoned with when pissed off.
She also creates a couple of echoes of the console room to save Clara and the Doctor, keeping them in the safest rooms in the TARDIS until Clara accidentally lets one of the zombies in.
Taking the bullet for the Doctor in "The Wedding of River Song". Well played.
"Last of the Time Lords", Tom Milligan's attempt at a Heroic Sacrifice with his pistol, even though he knew that both the Toclafane and the Master were invulnerable to bullets, to try and save Martha, a woman that he's known less than a day...in a word, awesome.
The entire last 15 minutes of "The Poison Sky" for the whole of UNIT, after 40+ years of playing the Redshirt Army they finally get to kick some Sontaran arse.
Or the Valiant on the start of the attack run? Even the Doctor is impressed.
Plus one of the few times MOA and horror go hand in hand is when Colonel Mace orders the Doctor to put on a gas mask and he immediately turns to Mace and says, as a throw away line, "Are you my mummy?" Don't remind us of that sort of stuff without warning, dammit!
UNIT not playing the Redshirt Army to stingrays with metal shells in "Planet of the Dead".
See Madame Vastra
In Enlightenment he rejects the Black Guardian's deal for the enlightenment diamond in exchange for the Doctor and then pushes the diamond off the table, into the Black Guardian, who then BURSTS INTO FLAMES. An epic moment for the otherwise shy and cowardly Turlough.
His final episode, "Planet of Fire": Turlough, knowing that contacting his people for help evacuating Sarn would doom him to, at best, exile, at worse, execution, contacts them anyway. His exile was rescinded, but still.
In "Voyage of the Damned", Wilf coming out of his stall to shake his fist at the sky. This is the man who, when the entirety of London ran in fear of the invasions of years past, stayed in his stall to mock any aliens who might try it this year.
Did we mention this is his first appearance ever? When the Doctor takes a passenger from the starship Titanic (not that one) to Earth and finds London deserted at Christmas, there's a lone old man running a newsstand who tells him that everyone else cleared out because nasty things happen to London every Christmas. But he wasn't letting any invaders scare him away, no! And he only gets more awesome from there.
In "Journey's End", Wilf takes on a Dalek. With a paintball gun. Then the Dalek vaporises the paint from its eyestalk with the line "MY VISION IS NOT IMPAIRED.".
In "The End of Time", further cementing his Badass Grandpa status by piloting an anti-missile turret and saving the entire ship.
He also has an epic, but entirely well-meaning What the Hell, Hero? moment when he tells the Doctor that he better dare not, even for a moment, consider putting the Master above the whole of the human race.
Rory gets well-deserved credit for his lack of response upon first seeing the inside of the TARDIS, but Wilf might have topped that.
"...I thought it'd be cleaner!"
"No, I shan't! It's Christmas!"
In "The Shakespeare Code", the Bard completely OWNS the Carrionites, with words.
That moment at the end where he figures out, all on his own, that the Doctor is an alien and Martha is a time traveler from the future. Oh, and the psychic paper not working on him because he's just that brilliant.
Zoe beating the crap out of a comic-book superhero in "The Mind Robber".
Zoë makes the International Electromatics computer work itself to "death" in "The Invasion".
Later in that same serial, she reprograms a handful of missiles to shoot down the Cybermen's entire invasion fleet.
Zoë: Here. Feed this into your computer. Branwell: You'd better be right. Zoë: I am.
Villains and Monsters
In Terror of the Autons, an Auton gets hit with a car and knocked off a cliff. As soon as it reaches the bottom, it just whips back to its feet.
What's even more awesome is that the actor had actually gotten hit by the car and tumbled down the cliff, and been injured on the way, but he still managed to get up!
The Black Guardian
In Enlightenment, the Black Guardian gets tired of Turlough not killing the Doctor, so he materialises and strangles him.
Cessair of Diplos
In The Stones of Blood, Cessair convinces the Megara, who are chasing her, that the Doctor is the villain!
Give the man some credit, he bears the full force of the Doctor's "Col. Runaway" speech without even flinching. The Daleks do a double take at the mention of his name and they're engineered not to feel fear!
"The Age of Steel" — it almost seems wasted on someone so evil, but when he rips out his EarBuds ("Oh, no you don't!") as Lumic tries to seize control, makes his way into his boss' central chamber, and mortally injures Lumic before the Cybermen restrain and "delete" him... you've got to admit that that was impressive.
It is a bit modulated by the silly voices, but Cyberman Krang's response to Polly when she challenges him about not caring that people are going to die in "The Tenth Planet":
Krang: Care? No, why should I care? Polly: Because they're people and they're going to die! Krang: I do not understand you. There are people dying all over your world and you do not care about them.
The end of "Rise of the Cybermen". The fact that as soon as The Doctor realized what was going on, he was scared. Real scared. His frantic screaming of "We surrender!" over and over again helps.
But the highlight of the episode (and we do mean high) has to be the Cyber King. Oh, dear sweet silicon heaven, the Cyber King. Steampunk Giant Robot attacking London, anyone?
"The Pandorica Opens" gives some great material to a lone Cyberman, practically getting the same amount of MOA on behalf of his species as the title character from "Dalek" in just one scene. Broken into pieces, the human inside having long rotted to uselessness, and it manages to get quite far in trying to take down the Doctor and Amy while being damn scary in the meantime.
And then Rory gets one by killing it with a Centurion sword in a Back from the Dead reveal.
In the stage show Doctor Who Live, there was one very awesome moment where the Cybermen and the Daleks have a rematch. Only unlike last time, it's the Cybermenthat got theupper-hand
And keep in mind in the context, these Daleks are supposedly a lot more powerful than the ones in Doomsday and managed to outwit the Doctor TWICE in a row. Watch the whole battle here
"Doomsday" may have had more than a few Dalek Moments of Awesome, but the Cybermen also get to verbally own the Daleks in this exchange of insults (around 2:13):
Cyberman: Our species are similar, though your design is inelegant. Dalek Thay: Daleks have no concept of elegance! Cyberman: This is obvious.
The Daleks get vengeance (at 2:53 in the above video):
Cyber Leader: Daleks, be warned. You have declared war upon the Cybermen. Dalek Sec: This is not war. This ispest control! Cyber Leader: We have five million Cybermen. How many are you? Dalek Sec: Four. Cyber Leader: You would destroy the Cybermen with four Daleks? Dalek Sec: We would destroy the Cybermen with one Dalek! You are superior in only one respect. Cyber Leader: What is that? Dalek Sec: You are better at dying.
Just a minute later, Rose points out to the Daleks why the Doctor owns them both.
Rose: Five million cybermen? Easy. One Doctor? Now you're scared.
The ending of the episode before, "Army Of Ghosts", also counts. Right when the Cybermen had emerged, and creating a cliffhanger ending of how the Doctor would defeat them, the Sphere opens and out come the Daleks.
The series itself became awesome when the Daleks made their first appearance.
For the record, that was the second story.
Alpha, Beta and Omega in "Evil of the Daleks" are esentially Daleks that have had their feelings of love, kindness and righteousness restored with a bang by the Doctor. After a pep talk from the Doctor and on return to Skaro, they proceed to create an idealistic conflict that quickly evolves into a civil war that ends up destroying their entire species (at least temporarily).
Black Dalek: Discontinue work. Dalek voice: Why? Black Dalek: ...who spoke? WHO QUESTIONED A DALEK COMMAND!????
Doctor: Come on! This way! Come on! Beta: I will obey! Omega: (playfully) But not without question! Doctor: That's right! Question!
The Imperial Daleks from Remembrance of the Daleks deserve a mention here, for sheer awesome firepower. After their landing party starts being beaten back by renegade Dalek forces, the Emperor orders the Special Weapons Dalek into action - and onto the screen trundles an extraordinary machine: Basically a Dalek chassis topped by an independently-swivelling turret. No eye-stalk, no plunger arm, just a massive cannon version of the Dalek gun, and the whole thing scarred and grime-stained as though it had been through dozens of battlefields. It rolls up to take aim on a pair of opposing Daleks, and fires - once. The resulting massive explosion wipes out the renegade Daleks completely. The Special Weapons Dalek fires its weapon exactly twice more in the episode - once to totally demolish the gates of the renegade Daleks' compound, and once to annihilate the remaining renegades. Each time, it's awesome.
The Special Weapons Dalek in the novelisation is even scarier. Among all the Daleks it is unique - it has a personality of its own. This is basically because the weapon's radioactive recoil has so warped the creature inside that it has developed individuality and a sense of self. And only Davros's explicit orders keep the other Daleks from killing it out of fear and loathing. And the author gets us inside that creature's head and makes us identify with it.
It's worth noting that the BBC special effects team went seriously overboard with the explosions for these effects. The first one got them into trouble after police and fire brigade were summoned, because they hadn't told the authorities they were going to be using pyrotechnics on that scale. The second shot, of the gates exploding to reveal the Imperial Daleks behind them, had to be cut short during editing to end before too much of the smoke had cleared, because the force of the explosion had blown several hemispheres off the Daleks' skirts.
The lone Dalek in the episode "Dalek" had a few Moments of Awesome on behalf of its entire species, but one in particular stands out from the rest. One word: "Elevate!" The episode was specifically written to subvert all the Dalek cliché weaknesses, and kill people doing it. A Dalek had already ascended stairs in "Remembrance of the Daleks", a Seventh Doctor story, although it wasn't as awesome (though it was one of the series's best cliffhangers).
It had another moment earlier on...
Red Shirt Soldier: What are you going to do, sucker me to death? (The Dalek immediately crushes his skull with its plunger.)
Also in Dalek (as well as an absolute Tear Jerker) is its final death. The idea of a Dalek experiencing such emotions as this one did after forty years of canon establishing them as vindictive bastards is... quite something. As was its final use of its own world famous Catch Phraseagainst itself (after asking Rose to order it to destroy itself, because it can't do anything without an order).
Rose: ...Do it. Dalek: Are you frightened, Rose Tyler? Rose: Yes. Dalek: So am I. Exterminate.
It also managed to do something other Daleks rarely do: stun the Doctor into silence with words. Namely ... 'You would make a good Dalek.' Done as the Doctor is foaming at the mouth and screaming at it to DROP DEAD. And that isn't exaggeration at the scene. (Incidentally, nice job, Chris—seriously.)
Continuing the love with the moment it meets Henry Van Statten. It advances on him, demanding to know why it was tortured:
Van Statten: I'm sorry, I'M SORRY! I just wanted to hear you talk! Dalek: * stops its advance* Then hear me talk now. EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINAAAAAAATE!
No mention of its actual escape? Breaks its chains, murders a man with its plunger, downloads the entirety of the internet and drains power from the entire west coast of the US to repair itself. And THEN screams:
The Daleks survive in MEEEEEEE! * Shoots stuff*
A collective Moment for the Daleks in "The Parting of the Ways": when an enormous horde of Daleks pours out of their ships and heads straight for the Game Station. This is later topped and combined with Kick the Dog in "The Stolen Earth" with their brutally efficient invasion of Earth, including the destruction of the Valiant. It says a lot when you can make the two most experienced alien fighters on Earth break down in tears just by announcing your arrival.
Another of the Daleks' best MOA: when they can't break into the observation deck to kill Lynda, so instead they rise up through space to the observation window, and, although we can't hear it, their lights clearly flash to the scream of "EXTERMINATE!". They then blow the window open.
Hell, they probably could have gotten in given time, but decided to stealthily do it the fast way just to screw with her before they killed her.
Dalek Fred, the Dalek from the last few minutes of "The Stolen Earth" shoots the Doctor mid-Meadow Run.
Horrifying? Hey, he made the Doctor Donna. Can't get much better than that.
"Journey's End" has one belongs to none other than Dalek Caan:
"I saw the Daleks, what we have done throughout time and space. I saw the truth of us, creator, and I decreed: No! More!."
The accurately-named "Victory of the Daleks". They manage to manipulate the Doctor, of all people, into restoring his greatest enemy, and then manage to pull off a Sadistic Choice on the guy who is known for Taking A Third Option.
The Doctor: Davros, if you had created a virus in your laboratory, something contagious and infectious that killed on contact, a virus that would destroy all other forms of life; would you allow its use? Davros: It is an interesting conjecture. The Doctor: Would you do it? Davros: The only living thing... The microscopic organism... reigning supreme... A fascinating idea. The Doctor: But would you do it? Davros: Yes; yes. To hold in my hand, a capsule that contained such power. To know that life and death on such a scale was my choice. To know that the tiny pressure on my thumb, enough to break the glass, would end everything. Yes! I would do it! That power would set me up above the gods! And through the Daleks I shall have that power!
A decade later, after having two mediocre-at-best appearances, Davros reminds us why he is feared throughout the universe in "Revelation of the Daleks" when he takes a page from the book of fellow Magnificent BastardPalpatine and shoots lightning out of his hand.
Plus it's the artificial hand that replaced the one that'd gotten shot off in the previous story! "Well, I've lost my only good hand, do I mope around about it? FUCK THAT I'LL BUILD A NEW ONE THAT SHOOTS LIGHTNING."
His magnificent Breaking Lecture to the Doctor, hurting him as he has never been hurt, destroying the foundation of his entire life and morality and all with a single speech:
Davros: The man who abhors violence, never carrying a gun, but this is the truth, Doctor: you take ordinary people and you fashion them into weapons... behold your Children of Time, transformed into murderers. I made the Daleks, Doctor, you made this. The Doctor: I'm trying to help. Davros: Already I have seen them sacrificed today, for their beloved Doctor. The Earth woman who fell opening the Sub Wave Network. The Doctor: Who was that? Rose Tyler: Harriet Jones. She gave her life to get you here. [flashback of Harriet Jones] Davros: How many more? Just think, how many have died in your name? [more flashbacks of the people who have died helping The Doctor] Davros: The Doctor, the man who keeps running, never looking back because he dare not, out of shame. This is my final victory, Doctor. I have shown you yourself.
What makes the above speech all the more awesome is that it continues to be vindicated long after this episode, and its message even becomes a key plot point in the Eleventh Doctor's run, to the point where it almost seems to be have been foreshadowing. Especially since the Doctor himself seems to be aware of this.
And, earlier in that episode, Davros is reintroduced to the world in "The Stolen Earth" by showing what he is willing to do to ensure his victory: creating a new army of Daleks using his own flesh.
Davros' ultimate MOA must come in "Journey's End" when he unveils what the Reality Bomb will do in typically Hitleresque fashion, increasing in volume with each word.
Davros: Across the entire universe. Never stopping, never faltering, never fading. People, planets and stars will become dust. And the dust will become atoms. And the atoms will become.... nothing. And the wavelength will continue, through the rift at the heart of the Medusa Cascade! Into every dimension! Every parallel! Every single corner of creation! THIS is my ultimate victory, Doctor! THE DESTRUCTION! OF REALITY! ITSELF!
The best thing was that this was exactly what he and the Doctor had talked about 30 years ago in "Genesis of the Daleks". That Davros finally had within his grasp the universal removal of all non-Dalek life, and that this all-consuming Critical Existence Failure was stopped only by a series of fortunate events? Davros has always been a creepy, psychotic and excellent villain. This was the first time Davros had him honest to goodness scared. And it was awesome.
The episode even includes a wonderful little nod to that earlier scene. In the scene from Genesis, Davros is holding up his hand with finger and thumb just parted, as though holding the imaginary vial of virus - and even before he actually exclaims "Yes! I would do it!", he brings the digits together as though crushing the vial. In the more recent episode, he unconsciously makes the same gesture, this time when he orders the detonation of the Reality Bomb.
And the laugh. Dear god, the laugh had the potential to be cheesy but given all his character and backstory it was genuinely frightening to see the madman that close to achieving all his goals. Also awesome for Julian Bleach for pulling it off so effectively...
What do you know of history sir? What do you know of next year? 1914 sir! Because the Family has traveled far and wide looking for Mr. Smith and, oh, the things we have seen. War is coming. In foreign fields, war of the whole, wide world, with all your boys falling down in the mud. Do you think they will thank the man who taught them it was glorious?
And the headmaster gets his own in turn; true, it's a remarkably bloodthirsty little statement for one of the allies, but you've got the give the man credit for not flinching in the face of someone as creepy as Baines:
You forget boy, I was in South Africa; I used my dead mates for sand bags, I fought with my gun when the bullets ran out, and I would go back tomorrow for King and Country!
And Baines/Son Of Mine quite literally shoots this rebuttal down by shooting Phillips dead and sending the headmaster scurrying for cover.
Hell, Son of Mine in general is a CMoA for the actor.
Lucy Cartwright/Daughter of Mine casually entering the barricaded schoolyard, disintegating the headmaster, and daring the boy soldiers to shoot her.
In the Fendahl Core's first scene, she stands up in one motion, without the use of her hands.
She kills people by pointing at them.
When Fenric first appears, he has glowing eyes and is chillingly calm.
When Ace accidentally tells him the solution, a lightning bolt shoots through the window and makes the table explode.
The Great Intelligence
In "The Name of The Doctor", the Great Intelligence pulls off a Batman Gambit that leads him to The Doctor's final resting place. Instead of a corpse, The Doctor leaves behind an open rift of temporal energy that represents the whole of his timeline. The Great Intelligence then steps into that burning white light, destroying himself and nearly erasing the whole of The Doctor's life with him.
When Arcturus attacks the Doctor in The Curse of Peladon, Izlyr shoots him without thinking twice.
"Frontier in Space", and the wonderful observation that "rocket fire at long range - somehow it lacks that personal touch."
In The Deadly Assassin, the Master frames the Doctor for murdering the Time Lord President, then fakes his own death.
In The Keeper of Traken, the Master's TARDIS, disguised as the Melkur, becomes the most powerful person on Traken. The scene where he steals Tremas' body is especially badass-looking.
In "Logopolis", he held the entire universe for ransom.
Not only that, but he destroys a quarter of the universe by accident.
In Castrovalva, he creates an entire city with a complete, detailed, fabricated history just to trap the Doctor and his friends.
And when he returns in Time-Flight, he finds it funny that the Doctor thinks he could stay trapped so easily.
His less than enthusiastic response to the Time Lords offering amnesty as a bargaining chip in The Five Doctors.
What makes you think I want your forgiveness?
Later in the same episode, he manages to trick an entire platoon of Cybermen into setting off a laser trap in Rassilon's Tower. When the surviving Cyberleader gets angry and tries to attack him, the Master shoots it.
In the 1996 telemovie, the Master gets to display his cruelty, fear, and awesome all at the same time.
The Doctor: You want dominion over the living, yet all you do is kill! The Master: Life is wasted on the living!
The exchange after the Master opened his Chameleon Arch and remembered who he was.
Chantho:Chan,Professor Yana,tho? Professor Yana: THAT IS NOT MY NAME! "The Professor" was an invention. So perfect a disguise that I forgot who I am. Chantho: Chan, Then who are you, tho? Professor Yana:I. Am. The MASTER! [electrocutes Chantho]
Much of this was made possible by some excellent acting on the part of Derek Jacobi. Particularly when, after having his memory restored, Yana's vocal cadence shifted slightly; some of Jacobi's line readings ("Not to worry, my dear. As one door closes, another must surely open") sounded just a bit like Anthony Ainley.
The entire last 12 minutes.
More specifically, there's this conversation:
The Master: Why don't we stop and have a nice little chat while I tell you all my plans and you can work out a way to stop me, Idon'tthink! The Doctor: I'm asking you really, properly, just stop! Just think! The Master: Use my name. The Doctor: Master... I'm sorry. The Master: Tough!
He then proceeds to leave the Doctor stranded. At the end of the universe. With a horde of cannibals about to break in. Awesome.
All capped off with some awesome parting words:
The Master: End of the universe! HAVE FUN!!! Bye bye! *leaves in the TARDIS*
A line made all the more awesome by John Simm's perfectly manic delivery.
"The Sound of Drums"
"What's the mask for?" "The gas." "What gas?" "This gas!"
What about the Lecture he gives them beforehand?
The Master: Before we start, I just want to say...Thank you. Thank you, one and all... You bunch of weak, sniveling traitors. Political Member: Yes, Very funny sir, but I thi- The Master: NO! No you see, THAT wasn't funny. See, I'm not making myself clear. Funny is like this (Grins), Not Funny is like this (Frowns). Right now, I'm not like (Grins), I'm Like (Frowns) Because You. Are. Traitors. YES YOU ARE! When you saw the votes swinging my way, you abandoned your parties and you jumped on the Saxon bandwagon. And now, THISis your reward. (Puts on gas mask)
There's also his moment at the end of "The Sound of Drums", where he effortlessly overcomes the Doctor's plan to defeat him, kills the US President, and guns down Captain Jack, with the quip:
The Master: And the best part is, he's not dead for long- I get to kill him again!!
Followed almost immediately by summoning six billion robotic beach balls Of Doom to decimate (bonus points for the correct usage of "decimate") the Earth, blowing a good-bye kiss to the Doctor, all the while dancing to "Voodoo Child". EPIC. EVIL. WIN.
He then ends the episode, with himself in control, the Doctor aged to senility, Martha stranded, Jack collapsed on the floor and 10% of the population dead, with the following speech.
The Master: And so it came to pass that the human race fell, and the Earth was no more. And I looked down upon my new dominion, as Master of all, and thought it... good.
"Last of the Time Lords"
Busting out more funky dance moves to the tune of "I Can't Decide", while he capers about the Valiant's command deck, snogs his wife, pours coffee on Martha's mum, and rings a bell to call out the Doctor, whom he has living in a tent and eating from a dog bowl. And starts spinning him around in a wheelchair.
It seems that when the Master has his iPod on, awesomeness is never far behind.
The end of "Last of the Time Lords" where the Master dies in the Doctor's arms, refusing to regenerate, and just laughing at the Doctor's pain at being the only Time Lord in existence once more. Even though the Doctor foiled his plans, he has the last laugh. As he puts it himself - "I win!"
"The End of Time". Two words: Master Race. If anything could top what the Master pulled off in "The Sound of Drums", it's that.
It's also an MOA for John Simm. If you just read the script you would think 'Wow!', but if you see him? Awesome!
The Second Doctor says that Rassilon was so powerful that even after he died, he was still alive.
"The End of Time", Part One. That. Last. Scene.
"For victory!FOR GALLIFREY!FOR THE END! OF TIME! ITSELF!"
In Part Two, even Rassilon himself gets a moment: the Master taunts him, calling him ancient and decrepit, gloating that he will turn every last one of the Time Lords into a genetic copy of himself. Response? Rassilon undoes the Master's handiwork on the entire human race.With a flick of the wrist.Awesome.
The Raston Warrior Robot
The robot picking off the Cybermen in "The Five Doctors" one by one.
In The Invasion of Time, the Sontarans invade Gallifrey.
Sutekh containing a gun blast to destroy one of his rockets with his mind!
And then there was his famous line:
"Your evil is my good. I am Sutekh the Destroyer. Where I tread, I leave nothing but dust and darkness. I find that good.
While in the Matrix, the Valeyard is just Badass over and over again. Most notably, when the Master shoots him, the laser just bounces off and he laughs.
He has exploding quill pens.
Also, the bit where he confronts the Doctor and Glitz on the beach and teleports everywhere.
The Weeping Angels
The Angels Take Manhattan: The Angels become the first villain to directly (sort of) kill off a companion. Sure, there have been Heroic Sacrifices, and then Adric on the bomb-laden space ship. But these guys managed to kill off, not one, but two top-ranking companions. Bravo, Angels. Bravo.
Yvonne: You will not pass. Cyberman: What is the meaning of this? Yvonne:You will not pass.
Behind the Scenes
The full list recounted to Martha in "Human Nature". Since Tennant was required to ad-lib about a minute of footage that would be fast-forwarded, he just rambled on aimlessly a bit before jumping right back into character at the end. The bit about pears isn't an ad-lib, though; it's from the novel that the episode was based on.
MARRYING. GEORGIA. MOFFETT. Who is also the daughter of Peter Davison. Tennant's now marrying the daughter of the man who inspired him to go into acting in the first place. And thanks to Steven Moffat, he got to perform with his idol in the role that he wanted to play one day... The Doctor. Promoted Fanboy, thy name is Tennant.
Tennant did a tribute video with the cast and crew at the end of his run for a party, set to the Proclaimers' "I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)". The Proclaimers themselves merrily join in. Warning: MAJOR EARWORM
To Top it off, behold the Ballad of Russell and Julie about Doctor Who's revival, as sung by David Tennant, Catherine Tate and John Barrowman. Epic Awesomeness.
Midway through his career as the Third Doctor, Jon Pertwee put the Doctor Who theme to words in the form of "Who is the Doctor?", spoken more or less in-character. Among other things, the results stand as a powerful challenge to the dominance of the VillainSong.
As fingers move to end mankind, metallic teeth begin to grind With sword of truth, I turn to fight the satanic powers of the night!
Sladen's reaction to Sontaran general Styre in "The Sontaran Experiment" was enough to have the director leaping up and down with joy - actually running up the West Country equivalent of a mountain to congratulate her on the scene. And these moments are only added onto with the second season premiere of The Sarah Jane Adventures when Sarah Jane sees a Sontaran space pod, and knows exactly how screwed they are.
In "The Stolen Earth", she achieved levels of fear with a tiny little tremble and a pale face that would take screams on a King Kong level from lesser actresses.
Elisabeth Sladen deserves one for saying, upon seeing a man wearing a gas-mask, "Are you my mummy?" in the commentaries for Genesis of the Daleks.
A posthumous moment of awesome for the late actress: the fact that almost nobody had any clue she was ill until she had already passed. It's a testament to her sheer professionalism and love for what she did, because she never saw it as being about her, it was about making great television that entertained fans. Lis, we love and miss you, and the world's a little darker now you're gone.
Lis's magnificent career renaissance. She became so beloved by fans that her departure was headline news, a first for any Companion. And then, thirty years after she was last seen on Doctor Who, she made a one-off appearance on the show that made her famous, and was so popular she earned her own spin-off. A spinoff aimed at children who largely had no idea who she was, which went on to earn critical raves and a high audience for its channel. Name another actor or actress who has made that kind of comeback on television, ever. And she did it all without a fuss. But then, that was Lis Sladen for you. Oh, Lis... we will never, ever forget you.
Actually, just before she got back on TV, she made two series of AWESOME audio adventures for Big Finish, which is kind of a company that makes stories for fans of Old Who. She also returned in radio plays with Jon Pertwee. If anything, it just kind of shows how great her devotion to her character and giving the fans even more really was that she could return, first 20 years after her time, then thirty and still just be her character like she's been living it all along.
One of the darker chapters in the show's production history was Tom Baker becoming incredibly difficult to work with in his final season. Recollections abound of him snoring in read-throughs at parts of the script he didn't like, verbally abusing the writers, having numerous shouting matches with co-star and brief-wife-to-be Lalla Ward, and caught in the middle of it all was new companion and Promoted Fanboy Matthew Waterhouse, watching the image of his childhood hero shattering violently before his eyes. During one of Tom's "acting up and being rude" periods on the last day of filming for "Full Circle," Matthew (in full Adric get-up) finally put his foot down and told him to "fuck off." And got away with it. And kept Tom quiet (aside from his lines, of course) for the whole rest of the studio day. The 2010 Doctor Who Magazine interview described it as a "coming-of-age moment."
Though given that this account came from Waterhouse himself and the reactions to his interview from his costars in the next issue (which was basically them gently laughing at him) it's disputable whether this even ever happened.
At the end of "Bad Wolf" we see thousands and thousands and thousands of Daleks all chanting EX-TER-MIN-ATE. For the first time, the show was able to transcend budgetary considerations and deliver not just a tabletop full of dapol toys, not just cardboard cutouts propped up in the background, not just three Daleks driving around in a circle trying desperately to look like many, but a proper, honest-to-god army to be feared.
For getting the Sixth Doctor Rescued from the Scrappy Heap in the audio dramas. While the Sixth Doctor is usually the least popular to TV fans, he is the most popular to audio drama fans.
Getting elected President of the Doctor Who Appreciation Society.
Writing his own Doctor Who stories. I mean, who the hell is awesome enough to write their own Doctor Who for their own character?
The Seventh Doctor's Unflinching Walk in "The Greatest Show in the Galaxy" was pretty awesome for Sylvester McCoy too: the explosion was somewhat bigger than the special effects crew were expecting, and it doesn't faze him at all.
He has said he was fully expecting to have scorch marks on his back afterward, but he knew there could be no second take so he simply went on with the shot.
In the filming of "Battlefield", Sylvester McCoy arguably saved Sophie Aldred's life when he noticed a watertank was about to crack and pour water onto a floor covered in electrical cables.
And amazingly it was all caught on camera and was considered so awesome that it gets its own brief documentary on the DVD for Battlefield.
His cold reading of the Eleventh Doctor's speech from "The Pandorica Opens".
Akin to McCoy's cold reading of Eleven's speech, here's McGann's cold reading of the First Doctor's "One day, I shall come back" speech from The Dalek Invasion of Earth.
The show itself
Really, with a show that has run for thirty-three seasons over forty-nine years and counting, contains two MoA goldmines in the Doctor and the Master, as well as many other characters with more than a few moments themselves (Daleks, Davros, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart) Doctor Who itself is a Moment of Awesome for The BBC.
In 2005, accepted wisdom in the British television industry held that the family TV genre was dead. The audience simply wasn't there; families didn't watch TV together anymore. Something like the revived Doctor Who wasn't going to last long. Doctor Who promptly proceeded to demolish all those assumptions. It regularly got ratings higher than those of most other dramas, its average audience staying stable in defiance of the general TV decline. It was repeatedly acclaimed by public, critics, and TV professionals alike. It quickly established itself as a centrepiece of the BBC's Saturday night schedule, heralding the revival of the family TV genre, and becoming a justification for the BBC's continued existence. Doctor Who became a crowning achievement for the BBC, and for British television in general.
Using the BBC's rival network ITV to break the news of David Tennant's departure. Seriously, mega-cojones.
Even better, they had no idea it'd even work. They had a backup plan but they bet their chips that Tennant would win the award and be able to drop the bomb during his acceptance speech.
There's also the fact that their work (along with the later work by Moffat, of course) has caused an explosion in the show's popularity across The Pond in the US. Sure, DW had fans in the US in the past, but it never truly approached the level it has thanks to the new series.
"The Stolen Earth" bagged not only the show's highest ever Appreciation Index (AI) figure of 91/100, it got one of the highest of all time for any mainstream (i.e. not an American import shown on Sky1 or something similar) show and reduced ITV 1 to its lowest audience share in history. To quote Donna Noble - back of the neck!
"The Stolen Earth" only got beaten to the top spot by 60,000 viewers. By a international football final. Any other show would've been decimated. (not in the "decimate the population" sense, but you know what we mean.)
At the time, ITV was run by Michael Grade, who is best remembered for cancelling the original Doctor Who (if only indirectly; he'd left by the time it actually happened) while Controller of the BBC.
The fourth season finale, "Journey's End", managed to top this, becoming the most watched UK TV program of the week - the first time a Doctor Who episode has managed this - and getting another AI of 91/100. For any program to get both of these together is virtually unheard of.
That scene near the ending as the entire team brings Earth back home and everybody is cheering and clapping, fireworks are being set off, and the music. It's one of the most amazing scenes in the series.
Back in the 1980s, Sylvester McCoy's era was scheduled against UK soap Coronation Street, and got clobbered, getting some of the lowest ratings in Who's history. Fast forward twenty years: "The End of Time" Part Two was scheduled against Coronation Street, and won (10.4 million to Corrie's 8.6 million on overnights). For those of us who lived through that time, it felt like justice had been done.
Steven Moffat turning the series title into a nearly 50-year old Arc Word.
The special effects team during "The Girl in the Fireplace". Apparently they decided that the iconic Doctor-astride-a-horse-through-a-mirror-into-a-ballroom shot was quite literally impossible to produce. After episode writer Steven Moffat threw, to quote the man himself, "the biggest queeny strop yet done on Doctor Who" and cried like an infant, the team basically decided to give "impossible" the finger and do it anyway. And it was awesome.
A collective CMOA goes to the show's makers, and few fans and members of the press in on it for successfully keeping the HUGE secret that actress Jenna-Louise Coleman, publicized to be the Doctor's next companion starting with the 2012 Christmas Special, had a MAJOR role to play 3 months earlier in the series 7 premiere, Asylum of the Daleks. The premiere was actually shown in 4 semi-public screenings for fans in 4 countries prior to its televised debut and practically no one from the audiences in those screenings spoiled the secret online before the episode aired.
The show also gets another CMOA over the only constant in the series: the TARDIS itself. When the BBC registered the TARDIS as a trademark in 1996, the Metropolitan Police challenged it, as the TARDIS is based on the police box they used in the 1960s. The Patent Office ruled in favour of the BBC, as the role of Doctor Who in the British collective psyche was so great that people identified the police box symbol with the series rather than with the police.
David Tennant and Billie Piper being confirmed to return for the 50th anniversary special. It's gonna be good.
In America, the Series 7 Part 2 Blu-ray was given to several hundred people in error before the airing of "The Name of the Doctor". Normally revealing a finale early is disastrous, but Moffat managed to keep fans quiet by promising a release of an interview of David Tennant and Matt Smith if the fans were good.
And all of that? Scratching the surface. In effect, what we're talking about is a TV series that if there isn't some sort of MoA in a story, the story is considered poor. And then there's the Doctor Who Expanded Universe, which gives us just as many.
The first Doctor looks and acts like he's 60+ years old (he's actually about 400). So when he's challenged to a kung fu duel in The Eleventh Tiger you expect him to come up with something brilliant and avoid the fight. He doesn't. Instead he physics the arrogant thug into submission. He uses his momentum from an attack to flip him onto his back. To prove he's not a one hit wonder, he does it again. THEN when the thug pulls out his "breaks clay jars, and heads are softer then clay jars" kick, the Doctor stands in classic "bring it on" pose and catches the light with his sapphire ring, temporarily blinding the thug. The kick still connects. With the pole the Doctor was standing in front of. All the Doctor did was tilt his head. He then sets about tending the thug's wounds. Ian and Barbara are stunned into silence. If they weren't paragons of '60s virtue they'd have both said "ohh hell yes". As it is, they eventually respond by reciting the lyrics to Kung Fu Fighting.
City of the Daleks: The Doctor walks through a room full of Daleks who've just been blinded and are spraying gunfire nonstop to save Amy from being erased from time.
In The Gunpowder Plot, Rory, stuck in orbit around Earth within the Houses of Parliament of 1605, armed with an EMP generator and a Dennis the Menace slingshot, takes out as many Rutans and Sontarans as he can. That's right, two species locked in war for millennia can't take down the Chuck Norris of the Whoniverse.