Made even more awesome by Superman then saying, "For what it's worth, I don't think you could have taken Batman, either."
The Flash running at near-lightspeed to throw a bomb into the sun in the episode "Eclipsed".
Also, in "Maid Of Honor" Part Two, Flash nearly dies after being blown out of an airlock on the International Space Station by one of Vandal Savage's Mooks, only to be saved and brought back inside by Green Lantern. Lantern tells the shivering Flash that he'll be OK. Flash's response? "Yeah? Wish I could say the same for them." He then tears through the station and drops every last Mook there within a matter of seconds in a manner that leaves no doubt that he's working through the shock of his near-death experience. It takes a lot to make the Flash get reallyserious, but if you do, you won't know what hit you.
"A Better World" was a powerful episode that bulged with awesome moments.
The Flash outsmarted the Alternate Universe counterpart of Batman into unshackling him in "A Better World".
Batman: What did you do?
Flash: I sped up my heart until it looked like it flat-lined.
Batman: I didn't know you could do that.
Flash: Neither did I, but I had to come up with something if you weren't going to.
Batman: I couldn't. Not with him anticipating everything I could ever think of. But who could anticipate you?
While they're imprisoned, the Justice Lords have taken their place in "their" universe, and Doomsday happens to show up to kill Superman. But he's not ready for the Superman he's dealing with: the second he realizes Doomsday can take him down, the Justice Lord version of Superman lobotomizes him with heat vision. Yeah, it's supposed to show how ruthless he is, but given how that fight ends in most other continuities? Not complaining.
And there's some meta awesome for Batman's voice actor Kevin Conroy - the commentary reveals that he recorded the scene straight through, switching between the very subtly different voices in real time, while still playing up all the emotion of the dialogue.
During the fight between the Justice League and the Justice Lords, Flash outmaneuvers (Justice Lord) Superman and throws him across a building.
The climax was an Enemy Mine moment. Batman notes that the Lords are just as powerful and smart as they are... with the advantage that they're willing to kill. The League has to have something they'll do that the Lords won't: and it turns out to be willingness to perform Enemy Mine. They team up with Lex Luthor, who whacks all the Lords with a power disruptor he built early in the episode. Luthor gets a full pardon by taking out darker versions of his biggest enemies all to a pretty sweeping "heroic Luthor" theme.
Lord!Superman: Nice company you're keeping. Must be your true colors.
Superman: It's just one of the hard choices I've had to make today. Go for it.
The Flash: Hold on a second here. What about the whole secret identity thing? I mean, I trust you guys, but I'm not sure I'm ready to -
Batman[points at him]: Wally West, [gestures to Superman] Clark Kent, [pulls off mask] Bruce Wayne.
The Flash: ...Show-off. [takes off his cowl and grins sheepishly]
Flash's reaction doubles as a CMoF, as if he was saying to himself, "Even Batman's secret identity is cooler than mine."
Batman taking out a team of Thanagarian soldiers with thrown transmitters that provoke an angry swarm of bats. "Wait for it..."
The whole scene where they fight off the Thanagarians in the Batcave was EPIC! Seriously! EPIC!!! Special props to Superman, who crushes the gun in the hand of a Thangarian soldier and breaking said hand, making the mook scream bloody murder - Superman reminds him, totally deadpan, "Let's use our inside voice..." before knocking the guy across the cave with a right hook!
Same episode: Batman saving the world by manually piloting the Watchtower through the atmosphere and into the Thanagarian hypgergate generator. Capped off by his farewell: "Gentlemen, it's been an honor."
Flash: What are you going to do, throw a Batarang at it?
Batman: ...something like that.
The Supers aren't the only ones. A restaurant owner realizes the two people running down the street are Justice League and give them shelter and an alibi when the Thanargarians come asking who they are. This is after a warning that they would be punished for giving them any help.
The prison break is one long stream of awesome: Wonder Woman kicking it off while tied up, Batman and Flash doing their thing, J'onn using electric nunchucks, and Superman bludgeoning Thanagarians with a hammer.
When the League finds out what the "force field" really does, Superman has this to say. Doubles as CMoF.
Hawkgirl: I have nothing to say to you! I have a gesture, but my hands are tied.
Hawkgirl and Grundy become Bash Buddies while battling the otherworldly abomination, Icthulhu. Faced with the colossal monster, Grundy punches his way into its skull, defeats the hideous things that pass for an immune system in there, and collapses on the very verge of destroying the nightmare's brain. Hawkgirl delivers the finishing blow, then realizes that this has been Grundy's Dying Moment of Awesome...
Meantime, Aquaman has mobilized the armies of Atlantis and forced Icthultu's army of abominations back through their dimensional rift, thus saving Earth (and, more importantly, Atlantis.)
Superman in "Hereafter". After getting sent to a future Earth where his powers don't work, Superman proceeds to take on a pack of mutant wolves, forge a sword, take on the same pack again, kill the leader in one-on-one combat, tame the pack and strap them to his car like a dogsled team, and then teams up with Vandal Savage to hack into the center of a nest of huge mutated cockroaches in a Back-to-Back Badasses moment, proving that he's awesome with or without his powers.
And when he's next seen, he's wearing the former pack leader's hide like a cape.
When he releases the wolves, they're genuinely distressed. He'd become their pack leader, and they don't want to leave.
You can't go wrong by going British in those situations, really. And I'm Brazilian.
"In Blackest Night": Hawkgirl chews out five Green Lanterns for not standing by John Stewart during his trial, then proceeds to fight four of them, first with her mace, then with her bare hands. And she hands their butts to them until Killowog calls them off. Considering that: (1) Hawkgirl had only known John Stewart for a few months at this point; (2) that she had not yet found any evidence of his innocence; and (3) that her main reason for joining the Justice League was to spy on them; it really says something about her personality that she felt the need to fight for John's sake.
"War World": First, without saying a word, Hawkgirl plays Bad Cop to Green Lantern's Good Cop:
Green Lantern: Relax. All we want is information about our friends. You can talk to me... [points to Hawkgirl] Or you can talk to her.
Then, she single-handedly destroys Mongul's planet-destroying superweapon, by standing in its path and batting the laser beam back down the cannon with her mace.
"Twilight": After Brainiac's first drone gave Superman and J'onn J'onnz no small amount of trouble, Hawkgirl gets in a lucky shot and beats it to smithereens. As far as any of them knew, she had just killed Brainiac; her response to Superman's and J'onn's stares was a shrug and an offhand "Well, someone had to do it."
Immediately after this, once Hawkgirl and J'onn find Superman being tortured, Hawkgirl caves in the side of Darkseid's face with her mace. Seriously.
This bit was one of Superman's most awesome lines from JL:
Superman: Any minute now, Brainiac will explode, and guess what? You're going with him.
(Darkseid reaches for the Mother Box on Orion's belt to attempt an escape via Boom Tube but Superman zaps it with his heat vision)
Superman: No, Darkseid. To get off this rock, you'll have to go through me.
Darkseid: You really are a glutton for punishment. Time and again I've beaten you, humbled you. What makes you think today's outcome will be any different?
Superman damn well made good on that claim, too. He fully intended to beat Darkseid to death barehanded, and if not for Batman (and the impending explosion) he probably would have succeeded.
He was succeeding: Darkseid was crippled by an healthy dose of heat vision in the foot and had just received a series of punches that had left him unable to stand up. Darkseid couldn't fight back anymore, and when Batman arrived Superman was walking up to him for the finishing blow in the effort to make sure he's dead.
J'onn hijacking one of Brainiac's drones to shoot the others, followed by his comment that yes, he is having fun.
"Only A Dream": Copperhead jumps on Hawkgirl's back and threatens to poison her if she doesn't fly him away. She flies straight up, then stops.
Copperhead: What are you doing?! Get me outta here! Hawkgirl: And if I don't? Copperhead: I give you your last kiss... Hawkgirl:And you fall forty stories. [smiles]Didn't really think this through, did you? [Later] Green Lantern: That was some bluff. Hawkgirl:Who's bluffing?
Also, the various speeches that Martian Manhunter makes in that episode to free the rest of the Justice League, and especially the one to the Green Lantern. It's not so much what he says (which is still epic), but how he says it.
Batman keeps Destiny out of his mind and eventually drives him insane by humming "Frère Jacques" over and over. In Batman's own words, "My brain's not a nice place to be."
He had already gone for three nights without any sleep. If that's not a Determinator, nothing is.
Hawkgirl scaring the piss out of Lobo, to the point that she practically threw a leash on him, in "Hereafter".
In "Secret Society", Shade shows that he learns from his mistakes when fighting Batman. His shadow-creating nightstick is taken from him, and when Batman takes the opportunity to mock him, Shade sucker punches Batman. Sure, he still lost, but that was awesome nonetheless.
That whole arena fight was CMOA for the League, but Superman had an exceptional one when Grodd is holding Superman by his head, hitting him with a psychic attack. Superman resists the attack then flicks Grodd on the nose, throwing him the length of the football field and through the uprights. All that moment was missing was a referee to signal a successful field goal.
One of the series' all-time Crowning Moments of Awesome: Batman is facing off Clayface when Clayface reveals he isn't alone, and has five other super villains backing him up.
Clayface: You didn't think I'd come without reinforcements, did you? Batman: Wish I'd thought of that. [Door behind Batman smashes down to reveal the rest of the Justice League] Batman(actually managing a slight smile):Oh Wait. I did.
Batman flooring Sinestro with a single Batarang.
Batman seeing through Clayface's impersonation of Flash, and testing it by shooting him with a grappling hook (knowing Flash would be able to dodge it).
"Comfort and Joy": In a scene that's equal parts Heartwarming and Awesome, Hawkgirl takes Green Lantern on a date to show how she likes to celebrate holidays. Said celebration consists of visiting an alien bar (where all the regulars cheered upon seeing her enter), then deliberately setting off a Bar Brawl. Later, after everyone's passed out amid the wreckage, she snuggles up to the sleeping GL and wishes him a Merry Christmas.
John Stewart gets a good moment at the climax of "Hearts and Minds". Seeing Despero torture Hawkgirl, John wills his power ring back to him and blasts away Despero; a villain that previously overpowered him easily. John's costume then repairs itself. His next words?
Green Lantern: Round two, freak!
Bonus points for John punching Despero in his third eye with his ring hand and branding it shut.
Green Lantern gets another good after being framed and treated like crap by his fellow Lanterns for most of "In Blackest Night". He takes on the leader of the Manhunters all by himself; after the Manhunter manages to hijack the Green Lantern Battery of Oa, John dives right into it, wrests control of the Battery away from the Manhunter, and then absorbs the entire battery - including the Manhunter - into his ring, accompanied by a recital of the Green Lantern Oath that turns into a full-on Badass Boast. The Guardians put it best:
Guardian: We chose wisely when we offered you the ring, John Stewart.
The Streak: We died once to save this Earth... And we can do it again.
And in the same episode, Catman fencing Sports Master with a golf club after offhand backhanding two other villains just before. Also, when Flash takes out the blimp he's tied to by stabbing it with the little lightning bolts on his mask.
Flash: Decorative AND functional!
And from the same episode: "Let Justice Prevail!" Only in the DCAU could a corny line like that be rendered badass.
Batman gets another in "Maid of Honor". While in Paris, Batman beats up a number of Vandal Savage's mooks. When he confronts the last conscious one, the crook replies:
Mook: [in Kasnian] You can't understand a word I'm saying and I wouldn't tell you anything if I could.
Batman: [looms over him, only his eyes showing against the shadow] [in Kasnian] I can... and you will.
It gets even more impressive when Batman mentions that he was no ordinary mook. He was a Kaznian Special Forces officer, who would presumably be trained for high resistance to interrogation... but not high enough to deal with Batman.
He earlier gets one when he shows up at a reception as Bruce Wayne. When armed 'terrorists' show up he's about to run off to change into costume, but stops when Diana (who doesn't have to change costumes) starts cleaning house. Cut to him calmly smiling, sipping his drink and sampling the hors d'oeuvres as he watches the Curb-Stomp Battle.
Lobo's temporary stint as a self-appointed Justice League member is pretty awesome, especially when he piled cars onto Kalibak until Kalibak cried "Uncle". And then continued to throw cars on him because he wasn't loud enough.
Lobo gets an even better CMoA dealing with Kalibak shortly before that.
Kalibak: I'm going to grind you into paste!
Lobo: [Clearly unimpressed] Awful brave talk for a dead man.
Kalibak: I'm not dead yet!
Lobo: You're right. My watch is about ten seconds fast. *picks up a car in each hand and smashes Kalibak between them*
J'onn saving everyone in "Tabula Rasa" by simply letting AMAZO copy his abilities — abilities that let the android realize Lex Luthor was just using him. The look on Luthor's face when AMAZO turns around and says, "So you lied to me..." is priceless, as is the subsequent beating.
Topped in "The Return" where Amazo takes out well... pretty much every member of the extended League.
And an entire freakin' planet. They were in his way. He put it back.
Not just any planet, mind you. It was Oa. Home of the Guardians of the Universe with at least a dozen Lanterns stationed there at the time. Amazo doesn't even lose momentum.
Another one from "Tabula Rasa"; four league members had fallen to AMAZO, and it was up to Superman to battle the android solo and save his friends. Having been informed about AMAZO's power-copying ability, Superman gets the drop on his opponent and wraps a metal slab around his head. This prevents AMAZO from seeing Superman and copying his abilities. Superman then proceeds to try to destroy the android, but ultimately fails; AMAZO is able to remove the metal slab, copy Superman's powers, and then two fight to a standstill before Batman intervenes:
AMAZO: You don't have any powers.
Batman: I have this. [produces kryptonite]
And we get the end of Mercy as an Extreme Doormat, as she wordlessly hangs up on Lex during his prison call demanding she get him the world's best lawyers and doctors.
In Wild Cards, the Joker scattered twenty-five ridiculously powerful time bombs throughout the Vegas strip, and the countdown's almost up. Flash is trying to disarm the last one, but he's slightly concussed, new to disarming bombs, and the Joker's thrown him off-balance with fast-talk and taunting. It's down to the last second, so the Flash grabs the bombwhile it's exploding and races off into the desert with it. As Superman puts it, "That was some stunt you pulled there..." No kiddin', Big Blue.
Harley Quinn punches Batman in the face. Even the Joker was shocked.
Ace breaking the Joker. Finally someone finds a way to take him down.
Joker himself, for pulling off a massive Xanatos Gambit. Scattering 25 bombs all over Vegas just to get everyone's attention. Then instantly realizing that Batman manipulated Harley into leading her right to him.
In The Savage Time, John Stewart becomes possibly the first hero in the DCAU to shoot a guy, when his ring runs out of charge and he joins up with Easy Company. A Crowning Moment for the character, showing he doesn't need the ring to kick ass, and for the show itself, for showing a superhero shoot a guy. Admittedly, the Hit Flash is placed such that it could have hit the rifle as well, but come on.
Never EVER forget: before joining the Green Lantern Corps, John Stewart was a member of another Corps. OORAH!!
Hawkgirl and Superman kicking the crap out of the Luftwaffe is another great moment where you get to see what they can really do when they stop playing around. And then the Blackhawks arrive.
Vandal Savage has a fleet of gigantic bombers to invade America itself, and the US has not been notified of the upcoming invasion. When Savage arrives... the US Navy fleet shoots the bombers down. How did they know? Flash ran across the Atlantic to warn them.BAD. ASS.
When the Justice League temporarily broke up, Flash trying to interrogate a thug, Batman-style, by dangling him over a ledge holding one of his feet. It works really well.
Thug: I've met Batman. I told Batman about a counterfeiting ring. I know Batman, and you're no-
Flash: *drops thug, then races down side of building alongside thug*
Wild Cards part 2: Superman is fighting Ten and suggests he gives up since he can't win. Ten admits that he doesn't need to beat him, just slow him down so a bomb can go off.
Superman: "Hold that thought." *uppercuts Ten so he goes flying into the sky, disarms the bomb in a few seconds then waits a moment for Ten to come back down. "Now, where were we?" *throws a punch that sends Ten through an adjacent building.
The entire fight with Hades and his undead army in Paradise Lost is pretty badass, but Hades pimpslappingSuperman is an awesome demonstration of Godly power.
The Question's hilarious yet awesome moment of off-key singing/breaking-and-entering in the Justice League Unlimited episode Fearful Symmetry.
He gets another one in the episode Question Authority when, after hacking into Cadmus's secret files while his girlfriend makes short work of the guards, he grabs the computer monitor and nails a man sneaking up behind them in the face.
President? Do you know how much power I'd have to give up to be president? That's right, conspiracy buff, I spent seventy-five million dollars on a fake presidential campaign; all just to tick Superman off.
There's something to be said for Question concluding that the Justice Lords scenario was a timeloop (from his 'everything is connected' perspective, it was bound to look inevitable), and still deciding to do something as outrageous as kill Lex flippin' Luthor. Of course, the consequences quickly turn into Nightmare Fuel as he has absolutely no answer to the even more brutal reality of this version of Luthor.
His confrotation with Superman is another. He actually calls him out on keeping the truth about the Justice Lords a secret. He tops it off by asking by asking Superman what would happen if Lex became president. Superman doesn't answer.
Further Question awesome, his response to demands for information while being horribly tortured:
The awesome part is not that he endured it, it was how long he endured it. Give that man a Green Lantern ring because his will is unbreakable.
Even more Question awesome, after giving his theory on Supergirl's nightmares in "Fearful Symmetry":
Green Arrow: Hold your horses. No one asked for your help. This could just prove that kids shouldn't eat nachos before bedtime.
Question: Peanut butter sandwiches.
Supergirl: How did yo—what, do you go through my trash?
Question:Please. I go through everyone's trash.
Question also gets one in the JLU comic, when he walks into a press conference and blasts a Senator - who is actually a shapeshifting alien (and is totally not a Skrull). That's just the start of the comic. He then proceeds to follow a trail of clues around the world - with repeated Shout Outs to Rorschach from Watchmen - and ends up right back in the JL Earth Embassy. "Found something. Thought you should know." The "core" League confesses that they planted the clues to give him something to do. Question says he already knew. He also says he realized they were the shapeshifting aliens from earlier. As the fake League prepares to kill him, he says he stopped by their ship, and got the real Leaguers out of stasis. Beatdown ensues.
Amanda Waller, a woman with no powers versus an amalgamation of evil genius/unstoppable robot/shape shifter:
Flash: I hate to interrupt this special live performance of The Thing With Two Heads, but it's time to go to jail now.
Waller: What he said. [shoots Brainthor about a dozen times in the gut]
Her entrance a few minutes earlier:
Waller: Hey, Lex! That android is Cadmus property. You're gonna have to find somewhere else to keep your brain. [blasts Luthor's AMAZO-droid with a BFG] A nano-disassembler beam. Your design, I believe.
Lex: Arrogant cow! It'll take weeks to build myself another android body!
Waller: You ain't got weeks, baldy!
After being disarmed by Lex, he taunts her:
Lex Luthor: Did you really think you could take me down all by yourself?
Amanda Waller: Actually, yeah. But on the off-chance I might have been wrong...
(Lex looks behind him and see the founding members of the Justice League.)
Brainathor spawning nanotech Brainiacs to defend him, then deciding he can "do better than that" and morphing into clones of their Justice Lord counterparts. The Dark Reprise of the series' opening absolutely cements it.
Flash effortlessly dodging the physical and mental assaults the League faces as the clones taunt them about their failures.
Lord!Flash: Slacker! Child! Clown! We have no place here among the world's greatest heroes!
Flash: Says you. I got a seat at the big conference table. I'm gonna paint my logo on it!
Immediately followed by him punching his arm THROUGH Lord!Flash and vibrating until the clone explodes.
"Divided We Fall." It's down to Flash vs. Brainthor one-on-one... and Flash turns and runs for it. Smugly, Brainthor turns to finish off the rest of the League... and then finds out that Flash wasn't running away, he was getting a running start... all the way around the Earth. And then he keeps going... and going... and going... and going, punching Luthor each time he runs by until he winds up entering the Speed Force. See it here. This is the definitive CMoA for Flash.
At one point, in a series of shots, Flash punches Brainthor four times in about two seconds. If that was real-time, he was circling the Earth at just over a quarter of the speed of light.
I think Wonder Woman gets one in that same episode that often gets overlooked, thanks to Flash's incredible awesomeness. Brainthor has just effortlessly taken out the rest of the League with some well-timed beamspam.
Lexiac: Now, where is Wonder Woman?
Cue Wonder Woman flying up and throwing a Javelinthrough Lexiac's Tower of Doom, blowing it up.
Martian Manhunter breaking loose from Brainthor's tendrils and single-handedly freeing the other Leaguers.
To recap the sheer awesomeness of the events following the aforementioned "Now, where is Wonder Woman?" incident and the ensuing dramatic explosions,
Special notice for the last segment should go to Batman for grabbing Wonder Woman's hand at the end of the chain and pulling. He might make little difference strength-wise in a chain with Superman and Wonder Woman on it but he'll be damned if he's going to let Flash disappear.
And then, a few yards away, Amanda Waller talking to the President, noting the nukes won't be necessary.
Batman comforting the dying Royal Flush Gang member Ace in "Epilogue". Yes, even Batman sitting on a swing-seat and holding a young girl's hand is awesome.
Also seen a couple of times in his own show - with Harley, Baby Doll, et al. Batman has a knack for connecting with deeply broken people.
The ending, which is a perfect mirror shot of the first scene of the entire DCAU (from "On Leather Wings"), nearly 15 years before. Not to mention the music, which is essentially Batman's theme and throughout the DCAU, it only played when Bruce was Batman. Until this final scene, that is. He's not just Bruce's successor and son, he IS Batman.
Phantasm (An aged Andrea Beaumont) during the flashback refusing to do what Waller had ordered: Kill eight year old Terry's parents. Although we don't hear it, she tells her that doing so would go against everything Batman did and fought for. This led Waller to dropping Project Batman Beyond.
Lex shooting Grodd in the face and usurping the Secret Society.
Luthor: I wasn't going to do this for a few more weeks, but really, turning everyone on the planet into apes?That was your "master plan?"
The Flash's moment was probably when Giganta kissed him out of nowhere. He probably thought so, at least.
Or better yet, the entire episode "Flash and Substance", which showed him to be such an effective hero in his hometown that it put Batman and Orion to shame. And more importantly, without any angst whatsoever.
A hero so effective, mind you, that he managed to talk down a member of his own Rogue's gallery by convincing him to get back on his meds and return to the mental hospital.
Also have to hand it to the Rogues: Captain Cold, Mirror Master, and Captain Boomerang held out pretty well against Batman and Orion (one of the new gods(!)), only losing when Batman brings the Flash back into the battle.
Professor Hamilton successfully staring down a wrathful Superman in "Question Authority". Yeah, he broke down afterwards, but wouldn't you if you narrowly averted the ire of a living god?
Well, two people know what he did. And he got the girl in the end.
Batman in Ultimatum. Wonder Woman blocks Cadmus agents from taking away Long Shadow and Batman backs her up. Amanda Waller gets the agents ready to shoot, and Superman and Aqua Man step in and block the line of fire.
Amanda Waller gets several in her interactions with Batman: in "Ultimatum" she calls Batman "rich boy", telling him that she knows exactly who he is and actually intimidating him. In "The Doomsday Sanction", she reacts to Batman breaking into her home and confronting her in the shower by verbally bitchslapping him and actually convincing him of the threat that the Justice League would pose if they would go rogue.
Batman: Whatever you think you're doing, if you present a threat to the world, the Justice League will take you down.
Amanda Waller: If we present a threat?! You've got a spaceship floating over our heads with a laser weapon pointing down. In another dimension, seven of you overthrew the government and assassinated the President. We're the good guys, protecting our country from a very real threat.
This chat apparently rattled Bats so much that he forgot to do his Stealth Hi/Bye and just walked out, through a door.
Hell, it rattled him so badly he wound up setting the intruder alarms off.
To Batman's credit though, after he walked out, Waller's hands were trembling. You do not just face off with the Batman without getting at least a little intimidated.
Batman later gets her back, though. In "The Doomsday Sanction", Amanda Waller's phone to the president rings, and she's shocked to hear Batman's voice. "If anybody dies on that island, I'm coming for you." Amanda's response is to hang up, and immediately go yell at Eiling over the plan he's put into motion.
You have to forget that Waller and Cadmus were crossing every Moral Event Horizon they could find (creating cloned super-slaves, rounding up supervillains to infiltrate the Watchtower, nuking entire inhabited islands, tricking Superman into going after a Kryptonite generator, and oh yeah, working with Lex Luthor) in the process of being the "good guys", all of which was only contributing to the very problem they were supposedly trying to prevent.
Though their actions/plots did convince several Leaguers (Batman, Captain Marvel, the Question, Green Arrow) that the League was in fact getting too powerful and they managed to get the League to come back down to Earth (metaphorically and somewhat literally) before they became too much like the Justice Lords.
See the entries above on her vs. Brainthor.
The General said it best in "Patriot Act":
Eiling: You've got some on you, Amanda.
A fan quote seems to sum up Waller: "In the real world, we tell Chuck Norris jokes. In the DCAU, they tell Amanda Waller jokes."
In "Patriot Act," the speech that D-list Leaguer Shining Knight gives to the horribly empowered General Eiling counts as one, not only deconstructing the General's reasoning and motivations for being a hulked-out monster for "the greater good," but also defining what it means to be a hero (at least by his standards). In a time with edgy vigilantes and violent anti-heroes among the ranks of the League, its awesome to see that someone still stands for the old guard, and doesn't waver in their beliefs:
Shining Knight (to Eiling): Do your worst, I'll not let you harm another.
Eiling: I do what I do in service to my country.
Shining Knight: Once, at the word of my lord, King Arthur, I was ordered to lay waste to an entire village. I knew my king's heart could not be so unjust, so I spared them all.
Eiling: Then you're a lousy soldier.
Clocks Sir Justin across the jaw, staggering him.
Shining Knight (panting & rubbing his jaw): There it is, the creeping moral decay of the past thousand years. (Attacks Eiling) Arthur thanked me, oaf! Had I been wrong, I would have handed over my sword and left the court in shame!
Attacks Eiling again, only to be wrenched from his sword and thrown several feet
Eiling: Save yourself a hospital-stay and stand down. That magic armor won't help you.
Justin doesn't listen and gets to his feet to go hand-to-hand with Eiling, only to be completely outclassed
Eiling: You're a relic. In this world, power is the only thing that matters. You and those other no-name heroes? You're just people. In the great scheme of things, nothing you do has the least bit of significance. (punches Justin across the street, wounding him grievously) I'll waste you and a billion others like you before I let any power rival America's. It's my duty.
Shining Knight (rising shakily to his feet): I'll die as befits a knight, defending the weak.
Eiling: Why don't you give up?!
Shining Knight: Why don't you?
That, and Vigilante riding a motorbike towards his enemy at high speed, jumping off at the last moment and shooting it so it exploded on impact. It didn't work, but still...
Two more: Vigilante taking care of getting a few boys in the crowd out of there by telling them to "do the very important job" of pseudo-crowd control, and then one of these boys hurling a demolition ball at the General when he was about to kill S.T.R.I.P.E.
Vigilante is just CMOA incarnate. Every time he shows up, you know the coolness will get turned up mighty quick. He is voiced by Nathan Fillion...
The final crowning moment goes to the old woman at the end, who with just one line stopped Eiling in his tracks. One more line from one of Vigilante's "deputies" (the kids) and Eiling leaves peacefully. Granted, this is Metropolis and the citizens have seen their share of supervillains, but facing down someone who took out seven Leaguers with almost no effort still takes balls.
Nine words: "You're the only one around here with super powers."
How about Green Arrow and Speedy's quantum arrows?
And then when that doesn't work, they rush him with nothing but their bows. They know they don't stand a chance, and yet they didn't even hesitate.
Lex Luthor gets a shining hero moment. Yes, hero moment. From "The Return", when the cosmic-powered Amazo has just finished going through the entire Justice League Unlimited to reach him, Luthor's left trapped in the Microverse with Amazo and nobody to protect him. So he finally abandons running, hiding, and attempting to kill Amazo, and just talks to him... and actually convinces Amazo that he is a real person and not just a thing, and does have a purpose in the universe, even if he doesn't know what it is yet.
John Stewart: What the devil's going on in there?!?
Dr. Fate: Lex Luthor is saving the world.
One of the Guardians gets a minor one in "The Return". John Stewart is trying to get a transfer to Oa, because apparently an entire world is not enough space between him and Hawkgirl. Naturally he doesn't advertise this fact. Not only do the Guardians deny the transfer, they call him on the reason he asked for it.
Guardian: It's our business to know these things.
"Wake The Dead": The Justice League is fighting a reanimated Solomon Grundy who, thanks to chaos magic, is both enormously more powerful and totally berserk. Superman gets sent flying halfway across the city and through the main support pillar of a suspension bridge. Bridge cables snap and the bridges starts collapsing. Since Superman just got knocked into the river, you expect him to shake it off and come back to hold up the bridge, right? Nope. Instead you get Aquaman slowly rising from the waters majestically, as if levitating, until its revealed that he's standing on the head of the Kraken. The giant tentacles whip around to grab the collapsing bridge and hold it steady long enough for everyone to be evacuated. Big Blue doesn't even regain consciousness until a minute later.
Also, Aquaman's immediate reaction to Dr. Fate's warning that something has stolen Grundy's body:
Dr. Fate: Solomon Grundy's grave has been emptied.
Aquaman: Tell me where to find those responsible. Then dig more graves.
Another moment, after seeing him take down Green Lantern, Vixen just says Bring It. Followed by Superman's Big Damn Heroes moment.
Green Arrow gets plenty of awesome scenes (some complain too many) but the best two are:
In "The Cat And The Canary", Green Arrow and Black Canary try to get Wildcat to leave Meta-Brawl, a cage-fighting arena for super-powered fighters. An agreement is reached: Black Canary will fight Wildcat in the ring. If she wins, Wildcat quits; If Wildcat wins, she'll let him do whatever he wants. Before the fight, Green Arrow gasses Black Canary with one of his arrows and take her place in the ring. Green Arrow walks into the ring and is thoroughly defeated in what might be the single worst non-Darkseid related beating in the entire DCAU. Seeing Green Arrow "dead" is enough of a shock to convince Wildcat leave the arena voluntarily, which is exactly what Green Arrow wanted.
His speech after Superman announces that the League is disbanding in "Divided We Fall":
Green Arrow: Says who? You remember what we did yesterday? We saved the world, again. You don't think that has any value? Well, think again, pal! The Justice League goes on, with or without you. Look, no one can question your service or commitment to making things better. If you're quitting because you think you've already done your fair share, fine. We'll throw you a parade. But if you're quitting because it's easier than continuing the fight, then you're not the heroes we all thought you were. The world needs the Justice League, and the Justice League needs you, Superman!
Not as supremely awesome as above, but the scene in "To Another Shore" where he hums his own theme tune whilst kicking ass is just brilliant. Also doubles as Crowning Moment of Funny.
In "Wake the Dead", there's a crowning moment for an ordinary woman who is never named. Her little girl and her are trapped in a car falling off a bridge, and Hawkgirl flies down and rips open the car roof with her mace. Instead of just sitting there and being rescued as per the standard, she instantly grabs her daughter and tosses her up out of the car to Hawkgirl. Shayera barely manages to pull her out of the car too before it hits the water... God, I love this show.
"The Once And Future Thing":
Batman: Six guns, six of us. Nobody miss! (They don't.)
What makes it even better is that Green Lantern makes his shot with an actual six-shooter, and not his ring.
Chronos punishing a traitorous mook by sending him back in time to the Cretaceous period. In just the right time and place to get directly smacked by an oncoming asteroid. His wide-eyed, near-deadpan delivery of "Aw, phooey" doesn't hurt.
Warhawk: What are you supposed to do when you have the weight of the world on your shoulders?
Green Lantern: Plant your feet.
And lets not forget that there's Justice League Batman meeting Batman Beyond Bruce. That old Bruce not only goes with the group as himself but also plays the bad cop to Batman and actually scares the mook more as an old man than his past self does as fully decked-out Batman. Static and GL put it best:
Static: Wow, Batman playing good cop.
Green Lantern: Everything's relative.
Also the little exchange when Batman's heading out to track down Chronos:
The writers of the episode deserve props too. The animation, script, and sound track make it clear that they wanted to pay as much respect to Alan Moore as possible. There's even a Continuity Nod when Superman's dream Krypton explodes; the tragic musical score that plays during it is the same as the one that plays during the real Krypton's destruction in the Superman pilot "The Last Son of Krypton". Batman's dream is a short but poignant one; it's shocking to see a genuine smile on Batman's face.
The heart-wrenching sadness in Superman's voice when he realises his perfect world isn't real and has to say goodbye to his son qualifies as a CMOA for his voice actor, George Newbern.
From what I understand, this is the only adaptation of his work that Alan Moore likes apart from Saturday Morning Cartoon Watchmen.
Even though it isn't real, it's quite something to see Thomas Wayne beat the everloving crap out of Joe Chill.
My favorite Crowning Moment Of Awesome for Diana is in "Grudge Match". Four really tough Justice Leaguers (Black Canary, Huntress, Vixen, and Hawkgirl) find they're going to have to fight a cage match against a mind-controlled opponent. They're ready for action. Then you see the raw fear on their faces when the opponent appears. It's Wonder Woman. The superheroines actually back up.
Vixen: Anyone got a plan? Hawkgirl: Yeah. Try to stay alive. Huntress: Anybody got a good plan?
Speaking of Wonder Woman, in "Starcrossed", she's the one who got their escape going. Not Batman, as might have been expected, or any of the others. Without her, the series ends right there, along with the Earth.
She intimidates the guard into feeding her, than proceeds to steal his knife and kick his butt, all while tied up.
Wonder Woman: Don't worry, little man, I won't bite.
She gets a good one in "To Another Shore". After having told off the vice president, Agent King Faraday warns her that he'll have his men shoot her if she does it again. Wonder Woman just points to her bracelets.
On a related note, I want to see Diana blast stuff with bazookas more often.
When she floors the Nazi soldiers, and we see Steve Trevor with his mouth (quite understandably) hanging open.
When she took on Mongul long enough for Batman to free Supes from the Black Mercy. Seriously... Mongul even stated that only Superman could stop him. Wonder Woman held out LONG ENOUGH for Supes to wake up and jump into the action. She did an awesome job fighting too... and as mentioned above... I want to see Diana blast stuff with a Bazooka more often!
Mongul: I'd advice you to try the plasma disruptor... it's more of a woman's weapon.
And, even after being severely beaten by Mongul, she still gathered forces to: 1)free Batman from Black Mercy; 2)Resist to Black Mercy's attempt to dominate her; 3) Throw it at Mongul.
Wonder Woman taking out those small time bank robbers, to the point where J'onn has to yell at her TO STOP because she could kill them was pretty awesome!
Also Hawkgirl and Wonder Woman tag teaming to release Hades was awesome too... I wanna see more tag teams between Wonder Woman and Hawkgirl.
I found Wonder Woman crushing the statue (with her bare hand) as a dismissal of Batman's (rather flimsy) excuse that enemies would get to him through the woman he cares about, as a reason why they can't be in a relationship.
What about when Wonder Woman figured out Batman's identity without magic or X-Ray vision?
And no love for the Justice Kids episode bit? When Batboy is picked up by a giant armor robot-like knight, and is about to be skewered with a spear...Kid Diana comes up, with one punch, makes the thing crumble into pebbles! Little Wondergirl catches Kid Bruce/Batboy in bridal style and asks, "You ok tough guy?"... double points for embarassed little Bruce to squirm and shout, "Let me go! I'm fine!" before storming off like, well, a pouting 8 year old! It was awesome, adorable AND hilarious!
And in the same said episode (titled Kids Stuff), when Batboy, Superboy, and Kid Lantern could do nothing to stop baby Etrigan from attacking them, it's LITTLE DIANA that puts a stop to baby Etrigan! By talking to him like a mother would scold their child for being naughty. Also doubles as a CMoH when she calms the baby demon down. You can watch it here.
The DCAU creators have stated that whenever they have one of their big "JLU vs. endless mooks" fights, Wonder Woman is always kicking the most ass. She's basically the Big Guy of the show.
Just about everyone gets one in "Panic in the Sky" when Cadmus' army of super-powered clones invade the Watchtower en masse:
Star knocking out an Ultiman clone who had flooded her father's exosuit.
Red Tornado vs. three clones with the same powers as him. Just to add insult to injury, he doesn't just beat them- he beats them one-handed!
Question knocking out a clone with his hospital bedpan.
Topped immediately afterward by Captain Atom finally choosing his side.
Hawk, Wildcat, and Commander Steel, three Good Old Fisticuffs fighters, dropping a clone ten times their size.
Fire defeating a clone that has turned into a tidal wave by evaporating him.
Atom-Smasher swatting aside countless smaller clones, and defeating a Longshadow clone bigger than him by throwing one of the Javelins at him.
Steel turning on the Watchtower's power system while lying half-dead from one of Galatea's beatings.
Supergirl taking a cable to Galatea's chest immediately afterward.
The Watchtower staff charging a T-Rex.
Batman beats General Eiling with only one hand (the closest thing he gets to a comeuppance in the whole show) while still chewing out Waller for thinking the League had hostile intentions.
That and the way he chews out Waller. He knows that moral arguments won't work on her: she thinks that the Justice League aren't bound by morals and would assume he was lying. So he uses simple logic that plants doubts in her mind and gets her to start looking at Luthor.
As befitting of a two-parter series-ending Grand Finale, "Alive!" and "Destroyer" had this for pretty much everyone involved, but some that stand above the rest are:
Lex's defeat of Grodd in "Alive." It isn't when he turns Grodd's mind-control powers against him. It isn't when he uses those powers to make Grodd kneel and call him "master," or even to enter the ship's airlock. It's when Luthor turns off the mind control right before spacing Grodd, just so that he would be fully aware of how thoroughly owned he was just before he died.
Lex Luthor: Goodbye, Grodd. It could have gone the other way.
Grodd: It really could have, couldn't it?
Lex Luthor: ... No. But why speak ill of the dead? [Ejects him into space]
This is also a CMOA for Grodd since he, even as he's being sucked out the airlock into hyperspace, swears that he shall have his revenge on Lex for his treachery.
Grodd: You twisted little pink rat-hole of a hominid, I'm not done with you! I'll get out of this, and when I do...!
After the unsuccessful mutiny the followers of Grodd are all gathered together:
Lex Luthor: Can any of you give me one good reason to let you live?
Killer Frost walks out of the group, takes a moment to examine her nails, and then freezes the rest of the group solid.
Lex Luthor: Killer Frost. You've got a future. Get rid of the rest.
Killer Frost: * salutes* You got it.
"Alive!" itself is a CMoA for the fact that it's entirely focused on the villains from the series. The fact that they could actually do this and have it be one of the best episodes of the series is utterly amazing.
Sinestro destroying a Tyrannosaurus rex-sized fire-breathing war machine by using his ring to create a Kaiju sized dragon.
The Question (yeah, he gets a lot of these) takes down a swarm of Parademons by running them over with his car. Immediately afterwards, he takes out another Parademon that was crawling through his car window by punching it in the face.
Heck, the entire sequence is all five Steve Ditko characters (Hawk, Dove, The Creeper, The Question and Captain Atom) in the Justice League kicking ass together, which is a CMOA in and of itself.
Other Parademon takedowns include: Giganta effortlessly sweeping a group of them off the Eiffel Tower; Toyman shooting Nerf darts at the Parademons who have surrounded him with seemingly no effect, until said Parademons explode; Lex Luthor blasting away with Guns AkimboFrickin' Laser Beams; an old Chinese man punching out Para-Demons on the Great Wall of China (okay, it turned out to be the Martian Manhunter, but c'mon... ). Note that many of these last only seconds, and they follow each other in rapid succession.
The Enemy Civil War in Apokolips coming to a screeching halt when the population instead bow down to Darkseid after his explosive entrance.
To do that scene a little more justice, remember that Apokolips is essentially a Planet of Starscreams, where loyalty as a general rule doesn't extend beyond ones self. And then Darkseid comes back. With any other Evil Overlord, you'd expect at least one upstart commander to challenge his return (and be promptly silenced). But here? They don't do anything. They all just bow. DarkseidIS indeed.
His entire return was this. Lex Luthor and everyone with him thinks that they're bringing back Brainiac. Luthor is overjoyed...and then they see who they really resurrected. The look of utter fear on every villain's face makes the entire scene.
Darkseid's speech before fighting Superman, ending it the same way as Superman's speech the last time they fought:
Darkseid: I hope you appreciate, Kal-El, that everything that happens from this point is on your head. The skies will rain fire, the oceans will boil, the streets will run red with the blood of billions. Only then, after your last pitiful hope is extinguished, will I end your life. Let's go.
And mere minutes later, just before the throw-down really begins.
Darkseid: I'm more powerful than I've ever been and the last time we met, you barely managed to hold your own. Superman: Funny, that's not how I remember it. Darkseid: Allow me to refresh your memory. (Darkseid picks up the Daily Planet's globe and slams it into Superman)
Green Lantern: We gotta find a way to take this out for good. Flash: Why don't you just throw it into the sun? (beat) Flash: Yeah, I guess that was a pretty stupid idea. Green Lantern: No, maybe you're onto something. But I'll need more leverage. And a trench. Flash: On it. * Flash runs a trench into the ground* Flash: Now what? Green Lantern uses his ring to create a huge catapult Flash: Aw cool. Green Lantern:* flings the weapon away* Doesn't look like it quite made escape velocity. Flash: Nope. The weapon collides with an invading spaceship. An explosion ensues. Flash: Good effort though.
The image of Batman and Lex Luthor as Back-to-Back Badasses and the fact that they're basically working as partners through most of the battle makes me just a little disappointed Lex didn't team up with the Justice League more often.
Batman attacking Darkseid not once, but twice, then dodging Darkseid's Omega Beams - beams that ordinarily home on any target, veering around obstacles to destroy it. Even Darkseid is impressed.
Darkseid then wonders out loud if Lex is as agile. Lex, horrified, jumps off the floor they're on and runs away. Darkseid simply notes, "Excellent strategy."
Superman's "World of Cardboard" Speech. Not to mention him "cutting loose" immediately afterwards. The look of utter shock on Darkseid's face as the punch connects seals it. You can see him realize, in that instant, that he seriously underestimated the Man of Steel.
Batman attempts to tackle Darkseid from the back, going about as well as you'd imagine.
Darkseid: You still try to fight...? *He simply hurls Batman away* Can't you see that it's hopeless?
Superman: That man won't quit as long as he can still draw breath. None of my teammates will. Me? I've got a different problem.
He relentlessly pounds on Darkseid some more, to the point where Darkseid is hurled through the wall.
Superman: I feel like I live in a world made of...cardboard. Always taking constant care not to break something — to break someone. Never allowing myself to lose control, even for a moment, or someone...could die.
Darkseid attempts to counterattack. Key word here being "attempts", as Superman blocks his blow and floors him with a devastating punch to the face.
Superman: But you can take it, can't you, big man? What we have here is a rare opportunity for me to cut loose...and show you just how powerful I really am.
Which is stopped the moment Darkseid uses the Agony Matrix to put Superman through as much pain as possible.
Darkseid: It's called the Agony Matrix. Direct neural stimulation of pain receptors - all of them. Imagine the worst pain you've ever felt in your life times a thousand. Now imagine that pain continuing. Forever. Oh, that's right...you don't have to imagine.
Combine the two above, and you realize why Darkseid did that. After taking that first punch, he knew that if he continued the straight fight, Superman would have kicked his ass. He pulled that trick because Kal-El cutting loose scared the shit out of him.
How Lex finished things off: "I just had to get my power suit." Just to point out - he's wearing his usual business suit, not his robotic armor. The fact that he refers to the outfit he was first seen in ever - the suit he wears in the world of finance, as his power suit, really tells you something about him. "...first you have some business with me," indeed.
And the scene before it:
"You have to have a twelfth level intellect to even have a chance at comprehending it."
"Then I'm over-qualified."
Keep in mind, Luthor got that far by holding up a god with a blaster.
The Atomic Skull, who barely had any lines before the last episode, stealing every scene he was in.
Atomic Skull(indignant): Five minutes?!
On a related note, Sonar accomplished something similar in "Grudge Match". From suggesting the most fan-servicey episode in the entire show to almost killing a League member.
For that matter, his fight with Superman. At first, they seem to be evenly matched Flying Bricks who rip up the scenery without harming each other. Then you remember the other thing Superman's vulnerable to, aside from Kryptonite, and where Captain Marvel's power comes from. "SHAZAM!"
Topped by Superman flipping Marvel over to depower him, just like he does in Kingdom Come.
Lex tricking Superman into leveling a housing project on live television. To me, that's not just Lex's crowning moment in animation, but anywhere. The fact that it went better than he expected is particularly hilarious - he fully expected to embarrass Superman, but not to maneuver him into Let's You and Him Fight. That was just gravy.
In "The Doomsday Sanction", a nuclear missile is launched at an island. Batman sprints out the Monitor Room and performs an emergency launch with the Javelin. He nearly burns his plane entering the atmosphere, and when he finds out that shooting the warhead doesn't work, Batman uses the plane to shove the missile off course. Averting missiles is usually Superman's territory, but Batman manages to top Supes with a mix of determination and sheer insanity.
In the same episode, Superman beating up Doomsday despite having his heat vision ruined by a jagged-fisted punch to the eyes. To make it even better, when Wonder Wonder tries to help him, he just goes, "No! Stay with the evacuation! This isn't important! Getting those people to safety is!"
And then there's Batman's response when Superman comes to visit him in the sick bay. "You don't get to joke! Not today! I just took a bullet for you!"
Hawkgirl's short rapport with Vixen about how lovers' quarrels are resolved on Thanagar:
Hawkgirl: It's not like I can just assassinate you in your sleep or poison your water. [wistfully] I miss Thanagar.
She then tosses a bottle of water to Vixen as she's leaving. Vixen's response? "Really, not worried," as she throws the bottle in the trash. Even when being funny, Hawkgirl can manage to be awesome.
Flash has a small one in "I Am Legion". He's on a Javelin with Hawkgirl and Fire when it's torn apart by a giant metal hawk. Flash can't fly, so Fire carries him. Then they see Hawkgirl having trouble with their attacker, so Flash tells Fire to drop him, both fully aware that he cannot fly. He's a senior member of the League, so Fire figures he has a plan and obeys. Not only does he not have a plan, he figures out how not to die on the way down.
Supergirl's battle against the entire brainwashed Legion of Superheroes plus Green Lantern in "Far From Home". Immediately before it, she's told that according to history, she never comes back from the future, implying she's going to die. Does that stop her? Not a chance.
And her charging into battle in "Chaos at Earth's Core," without any of the powers she'd normally rely on, and still managing to kick a sizable amount of ass(with a sword, no less!). Especially her teeth-clenched "I... won't... quit", even while being slowly killed by a kryptonite chunk. This is made even more badass considering she'd just carved that kryptonite chunk out of Metallo's chest, using a dagger that she'd stealthily picked up after tricking Metallo into thinking she was totally helpless by making a show of being too weak to pick up a sword. The sheer badass of that scene was enough to convert Stargirl from the Alpha Bitch to a friend.
Task Force X. These are a group of unpowered humans that manage to penetrate a citadel in space occupied by super powered beings (some of whom are practically gods) and steal a giant freaking suit of living armor from a high-security lock down.
And there's J'onn J'onzz, when he descends on them as they're about to escape. He effortlessly beats them all in seconds, shakes off being torn in half by said living armor as if it was nothing (seriously it didn't take him even 10 seconds to reform and stand up) and then he starts throwing freaking Annihilator around like it was a puppet - the same thing that Wonder Woman couldn't even scratch. Even those two sentences he says doing that are made of Awesome:
J'onn J'onzz: Ask yourselves - is being in here with me what you truly desire?
After being torn in half:
J'onn J'onzz: Green Lantern. Return to the Watchtower; I may need some assistance.
"Dead Reckoning": the prepubescent monk at Nanda Parbat from The Shangri-La that stood down a group of the most dangerous villains in the world, kicked the crap out of Atomic Skull with wuxia martial arts then goes "This humble one would not presume to fight you alone." Cue badass Shaolin Monks out of nowhere!
In the episode Dark Heart, after the League - the entire League - barely stops an endlessly-replicating alien nanomachine horde, the US military confiscates it for study, much to the despair of the League. The following line sums them up perfectly.
Atom: Amazing. Show him a weapon that destroyed its creators and every other thing it saw, and he wants to play with it. What's to stop history repeating itself, here on Earth?
Superman: We are.
The end of "The Great Brain Robbery," the Legion has Lex detained - thinking he's an impostor despite his objections. Having already been itching for a power play, Doctor Polaris decides to dispose of him regardless and uses his powers to rip several very sharp metal fragments out of the ceiling. Lex presses a button on his belt, overriding Polaris' control of his powers. The look of Oh, Crap on Polaris' face is priceless.
Lex:(standing up)That's how you know I'm Luthor. When I augmented your powers, I also made sure I can override your abilities. Would anyone else care to try me?
And this is after he ran rings around the Justice League in Flash's body, displaying almost terrifying competence with Flash's powers.
Even better is that they make it clear that everything Luthor does in Flash's body isn't the result of a genius taking advantage of potential the hero was never aware of. Flash himself knows how to do everything Luthor did and simply chooses not to because it's too deadly. Lantern even recognises instantly how bad the situation is.
A more meta example in their adaption of For the Man Who Has Everything,Alan Moore allowed his name to be attached to be credited. A cartoon did what million dollar summer block busters could not: get his approval.