Signature Scene

The most famous scene from the most disastrous teen romance you're likely to find.

"THAT scene in American Pie."

That one scene that everyone remembers from a movie or other media. When people think of the work, this is the one scene that they immediately think of, and may be the only reason to remember it at all. If the work is referenced in popular culture, it will reference this scene. Cover illustrations will often depict this scene. Any parodies will also center on this scene specifically.

There are many reasons that the scene may stand out. It may be...

No matter the reason, the Signature Scene is cemented in the minds of the general public. If you have actually seen the work yourself, there may be more scenes that you enjoy, or possibly stick out more in your mind than what people believe to be the Signature Scene.

Scenes which are little more than famous quotes should probably not be listed here. Those are examples of Signature Lines. Quotes do help keep a Signature Scene memorable, though.

Compare All There Is to Know About "The Crying Game", Best Known for the Fanservice, Watch It for the Meme, Money Making Shot, and Everybody Knows That.

Examples

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    Anime & Manga 
  • Attack on Titan
    • The Colossal Titan's head and hand creeping over Wall Maria. Perhaps just as iconic is its abrupt reappearance five years later, right after Eren's inner monologue about rebuilding and fighting back.
    • Eren's mother being eaten alive.
    • Eren's return as a Titan and whaling on a Titan that was about to attack Mikasa.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist
    • Ed sacrificing his limbs to save Al.
    • Hughes' death.
    • Ed's battle with Greed.
    • The Elric brothers discovering the horrific truth about Shou Tucker's Chimera.
    • King Bradley / Wrath destroying a tank with a sword and hand grenade.
    • Mustang killing Lust Deader Than Dead by burning her repeatedly.
  • Naruto
    • Naruto's Multi Shadow Clone Jutsu against Mizuki.
    • When Naruto releases the Kyubbi Chakra for the first time after Sasuke gets wounded by Haku.
    • Naruto at One-Tailed mode clashing his Rasengan with Sasuke at Curse-Mark level 2 form's Chidori.
  • Azumanga Daioh:
    • Osaka's little moment with the knife.
    • In the anime, the scene where Osaka meets Chiyo's Dad, thanks to the voice talents of the inimitable Norio Wakamoto. HERRO EVERY NYAN.
  • Hajime No Ippo: Ippo's completed Dempsey Roll against Sendou at the end of the Japanese Featherweight Championship has become one of the most iconic scenes. It's had Shout Outs in games like Super Street Fighter IV and Tekken for starters.
  • Genocyber:
  • Cowboy Bebop
    • Julia getting shot, then falling to the ground in excruciating slow-mo is one of the most iconic moments in all of anime, not to mention a major Tear Jerker.
    • The final scene, where Spike looks to the camera, makes a gun with his fingers and says "Bang" before he falls to the ground.
    • The scene in "Ballad of Fallen Angels" where Spike throws a grenade through a shattered stained-glass window after Vicious tosses him through it.
  • Pokémon has a few of these:
    • There's the original opening, where Pikachu runs past the final starter evolutions and underneath a girl's skirt.
    • Pikachu electrocuting Ash for the first time, shortly after being released from its Pokeball.
    • Pikachu's using a Thunder attack against a flock of angry Spearow.
    • Ash and Pikachu seeing Ho-oh for the first time.
    • Team Rocket's motto.
    • Charizard refusing to obey Ash during the Indigo conference, costing him the league.
    • Ash being turned to stone in the first movie.
    • Charizard's return to save Ash from Entei in the third film.
    • The scene where Meloetta is placed on the tablet and forced to sing is hands-down the most remembered thing in Team Rocket's story arc, Operation Tempest.
  • Berserk: The Eclipse, especially the bit where Guts' eye gets clawed out with the last image it sees being Casca's unconscious and violated body. Also, the scene where Guts get his Berserker armor and fights with it for the first time is also iconic.
  • Bleach
    • Rukia running Ichigo through the chest with her sword, transforming him into a Shinigami.
    • Rukia, at the scene of her execution, accepting her fate as a giant, fiery phoenix lunges at her... only to wake up, seeing Ichigo casually blocking the phoenix with his sword. And then she yells at him to let her die. He ignores her, destroys the building levitating her, holds her in his arm and throws her body like a rocket to Renji.
    • The first time Ichigo uses Bankai, where he dons a long cloak and a jet black sword, before Flash Stepping in front of Byakuya with the tip of his blade on Byakuya's throat.
    • Ichigo being surrounded by hundreds of razor-sharp sakura petals, before deflecting every last one with his katana. Even Byakuya was shocked.
    • Sosuke Aizen revealing himself to be the Man Behind the Man by impaling his loving lieutenant through the chest.
    • Ichigo charges at Aizen, bankai at the ready and theme music triumphantly playing... only to have Aizen stop him with one finger, shutting off the music and severely wounding him.
    • Orihime's "Five Lifetimes" Anguished Declaration of Love to the uonconscious Ichigo, then her Almost Kiss moment before she has to go away to Las Noches in exchange for her friends's safety.
    • The whole "Lust Arc" fight, including Ichigo dying at the hands of Ulquiorra, Orihime almost crossing the Despair Event Horizon as Ulquiorra taunts her and Ishida, Ichigo being Back from the Dead and into a MASSIVELY overpowered/out-of-control version of himself, and Ulquiorra's Alas, Poor Villain send-off
    • Hitsugaya impales Aizen, thinking it's over... only for it to have been one of Aizen's illusions; Hitsugaya accidentally impaled Hinamori. Aizen proceeds to annihilate Kira, Iba, Hitsugaya, Sui-Feng, Hirako, and Kyoraku simultaneously.
    • Shigekuni Yamamoto unleashing his Bankai against his Arch-Enemy, Emperor Yhwach... only to find out that he used it on a decoy. The real Yhwach comes in, steals Yamamoto's Bankai, slices him in half. Yamamoto's upper half falls down, with his legs and lower half still standing. Yhwach severs Yamamoto's remaining arm, kicks his head to the ground and obliterates his corpse. Holy shit.
    • Bambietta Basterbine, in an attempt to alleviate frustration over politics, calls a random Red Shirt up for a quickie at her room. He accepts happily. You then see his eyes rolling at the back of his head as she slices his (shirtless) body in half, with her calmly staring on. We're immediately treated to a panel where she's missing her stockings and her jacket is unzipped; we get a nice shot of her bigger-than-assumed cleavage as her friends suddenly appear and chew her out for killing yet another guy out of frustration before they could have a chance at him. This was both freaky and awesome.
  • Dragon Ball
    • Goku catching a giant fish.
    • Bulma and Goku meeting for the first time.
    • The infamous scene where Bulma (unknowingly) flashes Master Roshi in exchange for a Dragon Ball.
    • Goku's transformation into a gigantic ape.
    • Pretty much any time Shenron is summoned (this goes for both series)
    • Master Roshi using a Kamehameha wave to blow away the fire on Frying Pan Mountain.
    • Goku vs. Jackie Chun (aka Master Roshi in disguise).
    • Goku flying straight through Demon King Piccolo's torso.
    • Goku's battle with Piccolo Jr.
  • Dragon Ball Z
    • Goku's first transformation into a Super Saiyan after Frieza pushes him too far in his cruelty. The Irony that befalls Frieza (because of Frieza, mind you) is but one of the reasons why people remember it so fondly.
    • Or when they realize his power level is over 9000.
    • Piccolo shooting his special beam cannon at Raditz while Goku grabs him from behind.
    • Goku facing off against Frieza while Namek is on the verge of destruction. It's so iconic that some of the fighting games will have Goku and Frieza in the exact condition they were in during that battle (i.e bloody and bruised) if you choose them and the crumbling Planet Namek as the arena.
    • Goku's Kamehameha vs Vegeta's Gallick Gun
    • Future Trunks totally owning Mech. Freeza and the latter's father King Cold in a Curb-Stomp Battle.
    • Gohan becoming a Super Saiyan 2
    • Goku transforming into a Super Saiyan 3
    • In one of The Movies, the battle against Broly.
    • A possible one is Goku's Heroic Sacrifice at the end of the Cell Games.
    • Vegito vs. Super Buu.
    • Pretty much any time Shenron is summoned (this goes for both series).
  • Gundam
  • Higurashi no Naku Koro ni
    • Rika smashing her head into a knife.
    • Keiichi's delusions of Rena from Onikakushi are pretty iconic too, especially the "Usoda!" and laughing scenes. In fact, it's such a memorable scene, people assumed everyone in that show was an Axe Crazy person when it's clearly not the case.
  • Death Note
    • Light taking a potato chip AND EATING IT.
    • "Exactly as planned."
    • The death of L.
    • The final episode, with Light cackling like a maniac when he's finally unmasked as Kira.
    • In the same episode, Light's death.
  • Code Geass
    • The end of the first episode, especially the shot of Lelouch's face just before the credits. "Well then..."
    • The Euphimator incident.
    • The Mexican Standoff between Lelouch and Suzaku in the season 1 finale.
    • The Zero Requiem.
    • And good luck finding someone who doesn't know about Lelouch's death.
  • In Puella Magi Madoka Magica, one particular scene got so many parodies it has its own Danbooru tag: the one in episode 3 where Mami dies a gory (though only partially seen) death by devouring.
    • Also the ending scene with Madoka and Homura IN SPACE.
    • From the first two movies, Madoka and Homura sitting down on a pair of chairs in a field and nuzzling in the OP.
    • In Puella Magi Madoka Magica The Movie: Rebellion, for the beginning of the movie it would be the surreal, nursery-rhyme-esque Cake Song. For the ending, it's Homura grabbing Madoka's hand as she comes to take Homura away, and stripping Madoka of her powers.
  • Whisper of the Heart
    • Seiji's violin rendition of "Country Road".
    • His bike ride with Shizuku at the end.
  • One Piece
    • The scene where Shanks gives his straw hat to Luffy.
    • The Power Walk to Arlong Park.
    • The scene where the crew declares war on the World Government in the name of their crewmate Nico Robin.
    • Sengoku revealing to the world the true identity of Ace's father.
    • Akainu ramming his magma-coded fist through Ace's torso. This was the first instance of a character legitimately dying in the present storyline.
    • Whitebeard Died Standing Up after proudly declaring "ONE PIECE IS REAL!!"
    • Luffy bursting out of a barrel and loudly announcing what a great nap he had. It's even more iconic for the anime, since it was his first onscreen appearance.
    • Gold Roger's execution, especially since his last words are what instigate the plot.
  • Abe Takakazu unzipping his overalls on the bench in Kuso Miso Technique.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann
    • Kamina's death.
    • The scene where they use galaxies as shuriken.
  • Hellsing: Alucard's familiar Baskerville devouring Luke Valentine.
  • Fist of the North Star
  • If you ever heard of F-ZERO: Falcon Densetsu, it was most likely due to the "Falcon Punch" scene. That scene became so iconic of the series (both anime and game) that it quickly achieved Memetic Mutation status.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure:
    • Part 1: Jonathan Joestar's final smile to his wife when the ship he's on sinks, taking him and the villainous Dio Brando with it.
    • Part 2: Joseph Joestar crying out Caesar's name after the latter's death: "SHIIIIIIIZAAAAAAAAA!"
    • Part 3: Dio Brando dropping a steamroller on Jotaro Kujo in that part's final battle.
  • Elfen Lied
    • The very first scene in the anime is as infamous as they come. It involves a masked, nude girl telekinetically dismembering, decapitating and bifurcating people all around, even using someone as a Human Shield, before getting shot in the head by a sniper.
    • When Lucy murders those kids after they killed her puppy.
    • Kurama and Mariko's Murder-Suicide, punctuated by images of a life Kurama wished they could have had together.
    • Kouta and Lucy's last scene in the anime, where Lucy admits that, even though she desperately wants to atone for killing his family, she knows she can't... and still wants to atone anyway. Kouta makes it clear that, while he hates what she did, he still loves her, and they share a Final Kiss.
    • In the manga, Bando's epic final fight with Lucy, ending in Bando getting cut in half after she threw the decapitated head of the Unknown Man at him.
    • Lucy, in a Superpower Meltdown, asking Kouta for a Mercy Kill in spite of the wishes of her Enemy Within.
    • Kouta seeing the reincarnations of Lucy and Nyu at the very end.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion has many iconic scenes:
    • It all comes tumbling down, tumbling down, tumbling dooowwwnn...
    • The Bardiel Incident and Unit 01 curb-stomping Zeruel and eating him, absorbing his S2 engine is pretty infamous.
    • The endings to both the TV series and The End of Evangelion are remembered just as well.
  • Rurouni Kenshin
    • The scene where a young Kenshin meets his master, Seijouro Hiko for the first time after burying all his friends who were massacred.
    • Kenshin vs Jin-e with Kaoru being held as the latter's hostage.
    • Kenshin vs Saito's grudge match.
    • The scene where Kenshin leaves Kaoru for Kyoto which also doubles as a Tear Jerker.
    • Sanosuke learning Futae no Kiwami.
    • The final battle between Kenshin and Shishio, especially the bit where Kenshin sends Shishio flying with his ultimate attack.
    • Possibly Kaoru meeting Kenshin for the first time.
  • Lyrical Nanoha has one scene in each season that serves as that one scene, specifically...
  • In Futari wa Pretty Cure, the part of the opening song, where Cure Black and Cure White jump away from an explosion, with smoke and dust are just right behind them. It has been repeated in many Pretty Cure All Stars movies, with New Stage tops it with all 28 of the Cures reenact the scene.
  • Air: Misuzu's death. "Goal."
  • There's a surprising number of people who know of the "falling kiss" scene from MÄR without knowing what show it came from.
  • The final battle between Blade and Evil in Tekkaman Blade.
  • GaoGaiGar punching out EI-02 when it regenerates.
  • Nagisa's, Ushio's and Tomoya's deaths in CLANNAD ~After Story~.
  • School Days: Makoto Itoh's death by stabbing.
  • Samurai Flamenco: The end of episode 7, when A drugged man turns into a half gorilla, half guillotine creature and decapitates some cops, in a show that had been very realistic and lighthearted until that moment.
  • Narutaru: The test tube scene. That's all you need to know.
  • The end of the first duel in Yu-Gi-Oh!: "EXODIA...OBLITERATE!!!"
  • Tokyo Ghoul: The scene of the protagonist Kaneki Ken waking up in his hospital bed after the accident with his single transformed ghoul eye.
    • Also, the scenes later in the series regarding Kaneki's torture at the hands of Aogiri Tree, especially the centipede forced into his ear canal and the subsequent physical changes he undergoes, the white hair, black nails and post traumatic, increasingly ruthless personality.
  • Black Lagoon: The cigarette kiss between Rock and Revy.
  • Gintama:
    • Gintoki beating down a couple of Amanto with his wooden sword for knocking his parfait, complaining about having to limit his sugar intake. His Establishing Character Moment.
    • The Strawberry Milky speech. That is all.
    • Gintoki and Katsura fighting the Harusame Pirates back-to-back in the Benizakura Arc and then pointing their swords at Takasugi vowing to stop him the next time they meet.
    • Shogun making his debut being the Butt Monkey for his appearances, earning the Pharse Catcher "The Damn Shogun!" through out his appearances along with how his predicament escalate.
    • Kagura going full Yato on Abuto in the Yoshiwara Arc.
    • The entire fallout with the 2nd Popularity Poll that ends up becoming a Story Arc, starting with the Disney Death of the mangaka himself!
    • Gintoki and Jirochou's first fight in the Four Devas Arc after the latter stabbed Otose.
    • In the Courtesan of the Nation Arc, Gintoki vs Oboro with the first fight started when Gintoki was about to attack Sada Sada only to be blocked by Oboro's blade, but he breaks it using his teeth. Then the second fight ends with former throwing the latter onto his wooden sword to impale him, with the phrase "Say hello to Sensei for me." The same phrase was uttered by Takasugi who kills the former Shogun for causing the execution of Shouyo-sensei.
  • Hunter x Hunter:
    • Gon catching the Master of the Swamp with his fishing rod.
    • Gon meeting Kite for the first time.
    • Killua ripping Jones' heart out and crushing it in his hand.
    • Gon's fight with Hisoka in Heavens Arena.
    • Kurapica's fight with Uvogin.
    • Possibly the Auction Massacre.
    • Chrollo's fight with Zeno and Silva Zoldyck may count.
    • Genthru blowing off Gon's left hand.
    • Gon transforming into a full-grown man and beating Pitou to death.
    • Netero vs. Meruem.
  • Nichijou: The principal wrestling the deer.
  • Ashita no Joe: Rikiishi's and Joe's deaths.

    Comic Books 
  • Quite a few scenes from Batman comics:
    Batman: What, are you dense? Are you retarded or something? Who the hell do you think I am? I'm the Goddamn Batman.
  • Dr. Light raping Sue Dibny in Identity Crisis.
  • Superboy-Prime retconning reality with his punches in Infinite Crisis.
  • Crisis on Infinite Earths
    • The death of Barry Allen.
    • Also, the death of Supergirl, especially that cover.
  • Phoenix killing herself in front of Cyclops in X-Men: The Dark Phoenix Story.
  • Rick Jones creating the Invaders to fight the Skrulls in Avengers: The Kree-Skrull War.
  • Judge Dredd punching through the Judge Fear's head while shouting "Gaze into the fist of Dredd!"
  • Superman
    • Superman lifting a green car over his head while three criminals run away.
    • Superman being weakened by a chunk of kryptonite.
    • In The Death of Superman, the full-page spread of Lois cradling the dead body of Superman.
    • Krypton exploding.
    • Ma and Pa Kent finding baby Kal El in a field.
    • Clark Kent putting his costume on in a phone booth.
    • Superman comforting/saving a suicidal teenager in All-Star Superman. Not just for that one comic, but considered by many to be a perfect encapsulation of everything that makes Superman awesome.
  • Captain America
    • Captain America's apparent death, with his bloodied body on the courthouse steps.
    • On a more triumphant note, the now-legendary image of Cap punching Adolf Hitler in the face.
    • Bucky sacrificing himself to save Cap, and Cap falling into the ocean.
  • The Avengers: ULTRON. We would have words with thee.
    • The Avengers finding Captain America frozen in a block of ice.
    • Ultron taking control of all of Iron Man's armors and setting them on the Avengers, repeated in Earth's Mightiest Heroes and Age of Ultron.
  • Spider-Man
    • Spider-Man carrying a man while swinging across New York.
    • Peter Parker being dragged by his aunt to a blind date with her best friend's niece at the end of Amazing Spider-Man #42, expecting to have to go through an "ordeal" with most likely an ugly girl. He spends some time waiting, reflecting on how he's become attracted to that nice Gwen Stacy. Then the doorbell rings, and Anna Watson lets her in:
    Anna: Peter Parker, I'd like you to meet my niece...
    Peter (bowled over by the lady's looks): You mean — that's Mary Jane..?!!
    Mary Jane: Face it, Tiger... you just hit the jackpot!
    • On a sadder note: The death of Gwen Stacy in ASM #121, notable for the much debated SNAP! sound effect and the final panels with Spider-Man holding Gwen's body.
    • Spider-Man confronting Uncle Ben's killer and realizing it was the crook he let get away earlier.
    • Spider-Man lifting a ton of debris off of himself in order to get to the serum needed to save Aunt May's life in ASM #33.
    • The shot of Peter walking away from his costume in a trash bin, remarking "I am Spider-Man no more" is also very well remembered and often referenced.
  • The pivotal moment in an Origin Story when a superhero gains and discovers his/her powers is usually this.
  • Lucky Luke: Lucky Luke driving off into the sunset while singing "I'm a poor lonesome cowboy".
  • Astérix:
    • The banquet with wild boars, while Cacofonix is bound, gagged and tied to a tree.
    • Obelix claiming he's not fat.
    • The villagers fighting over the rotten fish of the local fishmonger.
    • Obelix beating up Roman legions.
  • Nero: The waffle feast that concludes every story.
  • Suske en Wiske: Wiske's wink to the audience at the end of each story.
  • Disney Ducks Comic Universe: In Carl Barks ' stories Uncle Scrooge will be seen diving into his fortune at least once an episode.
  • Gaston Lagaffe: Gaston accidentally preventing Mr. Demesmaeker from signing the contracts time and time again.
  • Agent327: Agent 327 arriving at his office in a disguise and then sighing: "Heaven's sake, what a secret agent has to do nowadays to arrive at his work unnoticed!"
  • Tintin:
    • People accidentally dialing the number of Cutts the butcher, or accidentally dialing Marlinspike Hall while trying to call Cutts.
    • The most iconic scene in the entire series is Tintin jumping from a disconnected train wagon in "The Temple of the Sun".
    • The red and white moon rocket.
  • Moon Knight has the iconic fifth issue of Warren Ellis's run on the book, which features a spectacular twenty page fight sequence, with Moon Knight slowly fighting through an army of mooks in order to save a kidnapped little girl.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • The Sword in the Stone
  • Fantasia
    • The "Sorcerer's Apprentice" segment.
    • The T-Rex vs. Stegosaurus scene from "Rite of Spring", or "Night on Bald Mountain".
  • Another Disney example: The Spaghetti Kiss in Lady and the Tramp.
  • Belle and the Beast's ballroom dance in Beauty and the Beast.
    • Also; Belle, on the hill, during "Belle (reprise)" is pretty iconic.
  • Cinderella's dress transformation.
  • The Little Mermaid
    • Ariel flipping her hair back as she splashes out of the water, or else sitting on the rock with the crashing wave.
    • The song "Under the Sea" also counts.
  • The scene of Rafiki holding up baby Simba in The Lion King, and Mufasa's death.
    • Mufasa's ghost giving words of wisdom to Simba.
    • Simba roaring on top of Pride Rock as rain beats down on the ravaged land.
    • The sequel, Simba's Pride, has the Not One Of Us sequence.
  • Aladdin
    • The Magic Carpet ride during "A Whole New World".
    • The first time Aladdin sees and touches the magic lamp.
  • Bambi
    • Bambi encountering a butterfly on his tail and the skunk Flower.
    • The death scene of Bambi's mother.
  • Up
    • The entire "Married Life" segment.
    • Carl floating the house away with all the balloons, while mocking the Shady Oaks people
  • Toy Story
    • Being introduced to Andy and Woody as the title screen comes up set to "You've Got a Friend in Me".
    • "Buzz, You're flying!" "This isn't flying, this is falling with style!"
    • "YOU ARE A TOY!!!!"
    • The sequel probably has Jessie's "When She Loved Me" montage.
    • Lots of potential in the third, but Lotso leaving Woody and the others to burn to death jumps to mind.
  • The "Hellfire" sequence of The Hunchback of Notre Dame.
  • A rare example from The Great Mouse Detective of a Big Lipped Alligator Moment scene being this, the full-blown burlesque show performed by mouse stripper Miss Kitty.
  • Tetsuo's mutation in AKIRA.
  • Spirited Away has the scene where Chihiro remembers Haku's name while riding through the air on his back.
  • The initial car chase to rescue Clarisse and the climatic bell tower fight in The Castle of Cagliostro.
  • Titanic: The Legend Goes On has the "Party Time" song sequence.
  • Jessica Rabbit's "I'm not bad...I'm just drawn that way" speech as well as her introductory song sequence, and Judge Doom's toon reveal from Who Framed Roger Rabbit.
  • The scene from South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut where Mr. Garrison catches the boys swearing in class.
  • The rope bridge fight between the Furious Five and Tai Lung, as well as Tai Lung's prison escape in the original Kung Fu Panda. For the sequel, there's Tigress hugging Po, Po discovering his origins and him using tai chi to redirect cannonfire.
  • Shrek has the opening scene of Shrek going through his daily routine set to Smash Mouth's "All Star", as well as Shrek and Donkey having a heartwarming conversation in the light of the full moon.
    • From the sequel, the part where Puss in Boots flashes his Puppy-Dog Eyes.
  • Transformers: The Movie has a few. The big two that most remember though are the battle between Optimus and Megatron (set to The Touch, natch) and the death scene with Optimus where he unveils the Matrix. Some also consider Hot Rod's transformation (no pun intended) into Rodimus to be one, along with his first change into his upgraded alt-mode and his speech at the end of the film. There are even some who believe the closing shot of Unicron's head orbiting Cybertron counts.
    • Arguably as well-remembered as any of those are the two Obligatory Swearing moments- "Aw SHIT what are we gonna do now?" from Spike and "Open, DAMN IT, open!" from Ultra Magnus, due to how hilariously out of place they are in what's otherwise a movie for very young children.
  • From The Nightmare Before Christmas we have Jack during "Jack's Lament," singing atop the curled hill in the graveyard during a full moon. Until recently, its been the image most often used for the cover of any home-release edition.
  • The animated film Felidae is largely known only for the very explicit, shocking, and disgusting sex scene between two minimally anthropomorphic cartoon cats. To a lesser extent, it's known for it's most gory scenes, such as the one with the disemboweled pregnant cat.
  • Elsa's "Let it Go" sequence in Disney's Frozen.
  • In How to Train Your Dragon, Hiccup first flying with Toothless is a breathtaking scene, especially helped by the Fanfare playing.

    Films — Live-Action 

    Live-Action TV 
  • Seinfeld: "No soup for you!"
  • Chappelle's Show
    • The Rick James episode.
    • The Clayton Bixby skit as well.
    • The Wayne Brady skit too.
  • The post-crash carnage from the first episode of Lost.
  • The Star Trek parodies from Saturday Night Live and In Living Color! helped define both shows.
  • I Love Lucy
    • Vitameatavegimin!
    • The conveyor belt scene in the chocolate factory.
  • Only Fools and Horses
    • Del Boy tries to lean on the bar casually, but it's not there.
    • The chandelier scene.
    • Del and Rodney emerge from the mist as Batman and Robin.
  • Rome: Pullo and Vorenus in the gladiator arena. "Thirteeeeeeeeeeeen!"
  • Mr. Worf...FIRE! The moment that made Star Trek: The Next Generation.
  • Miami Vice
    • In the fourth episode, there is a pre-credits scene where Russ Ballard's 80's song "Voices" plays while the detective's speedboat heads off into the sunset. Many folks who never saw the series, know that scene.
    • The other scene is the one with Crockett and Tubbs driving at night while the city street lights blare off the hood of the Daytona, loading their guns with Phil Collins' "In the Air Tonight" slowly building up.
  • The "fuck" investigation scene from The Wire.
    • Also the "You come at the king, you best not miss." scene.
      • "Omar's coming", followed by the character's walk through the neighborhood, is another one.
      • Omar's death probably counts, too.
  • Twin Peaks: The Red Room scene with The Man from Another Place.
  • Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers: The opening title sequence, the first battle, the team morph after Tommy joins, and the Megazord sequence are all particularly well remembered, the opening most of all. Rita stretches after partially emerging from her space dumpster prison and proclaims: "Aaah! After ten thousand years, I'm free! It's time to conquer Earth!"
  • Star Trek
    • All you need to do is put one guy in a Red Shirt and kill him.
    • The transporters work as well.
  • Grey's Anatomy has several in the season 2 finale where Izzie crying in a dead Denny's arms, then quitting the residency program, and Derek and Meredith having adulterous exam room sex which causes Meredith to be torn between Derek and Finn
  • "Okay, this Buffy the Vampire Slayer is meant to be really good. I think I'll check it out." Cue scene where she shoulders a rocket launcher at her former boyfriend. "Whoooa." This scene is considered the crowning moment by many fans, and even against other well-done parts this one stands out.
  • Blair losing her virginity to Chuck in the back of his limo on Gossip Girl.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • Season 1:
      • Jaime Lannister pushing Bran Stark from a tower after the latter witnessed the former's Twincest.
      • The execution of Ned Stark.
      • The Dothraki bowing to Daenerys Targaryen after hatching the dragon and surviving the funeral pyre.
    • Season 2:
    • Season 3:
      • Jaime Lannister losing his right hand.
      • Jaime Lannister revealing to Brienne on what really happened the day he became known as "The Kingslayer".
      • Jaime Lannister's Big Damn Heroes moment by saving Brienne from a bear.
      • The Red Wedding.
      • Theon Greyjoy's family receiving a box that contains his castrated penis.
    • Season 4:
      • The Purple Wedding. Specifically, Joffrey's death.
      • Jaime raping Cersei next to Joffrey's corpse.
      • Tyrion's "The Reason You Suck" Speech at his trial.
      • The Mountain killing Oberyn Martell.
      • Tyrion killing his estranged lover Shae and his father Tywin in succession.
  • Spartacus
  • The Walking Dead
    • Season 1:
      • Rick reuniting with his family.
      • Merle handcuffed in the roof.
      • Rick, Daryl, Glenn and T-Dog finding Merle's severed hand.
      • Amy's death.
      • The explosion of the CDC.
    • Season 2:
      • The barn massacre scene.
      • Dale's death.
      • Rick and Shane's final confrontation.
      • The burning of the barn.
      • Michonne's debut.
      • Rick declaring the "Ricktatorship".
    • Season 3:
      • The Traumatic C-Section and eventual literal Shoot the Dog moment, as well as Rick's reaction to it.
      • The Woodburry Rescue Arc.
      • The Governor crying over his daughter's dead body.
      • Daryl and Merle reunited and forced to fight to the death at Woodburry.
      • Rick and The Governor meeting face-to-face for the first time.
      • Andrea fleeing to go to the prison.
      • Merle's Dying Moment of Awesome.
      • The Governor massacring his own men.
    • Season 4:
    • Season 5:
      • The group burning Terminus to the ground.
      • The Hunters eating Bob's leg.
      • The group's No-Holds-Barred Beatdown of the Hunters.
      • Bob's death.
      • Beth's death.
      • Tyreese's death.
      • Carol threatening a kid and then offering him cookies.
      • Noah's death.
      • Rick's "The Reason You Suck" Speech to the Alexandrians.
  • How I Met Your Mother
    • Season 1:
      • Ted stealing the blue French horn from a bistro.
      • Ted and Victoria's first meeting.
      • Barney's "Evil Makeover" montage when he was telling the story of his Start of Darkness.
      • Ted making it rain and hooking-up with Robin.
      • Marshall showing Ted Lily's disowned engagement ring to Ted (they got better).
    • Season 2:
      • The Reveal of Robin's Idol Singer past.
      • Marshall slapping Barney for the very first time.
      • Marshall and Lilly's wedding.
      • Ted and Robin breaking up.
    • Season 3:
      • Ted and Stella's two-minute date.
      • Robin and Barney hooking-up.
      • Ted and Barney's fallout.
      • Ted and Barney's almost simultaneous road accidents.
      • Ted and Barney's reconciliation.
    • Season 4:
      • Stella abandoning Ted at the altar.
      • Ted vs. the Goat
      • Robin and Barney's Big Damn Kiss.
      • The gang jumping one-by-one from the patio of their apartment building to their neighbor's concluding with Ted accepting the teacher job.
    • Season 5:
      • Barney and Robin's break-up.
      • Every doppelganger appearance.
      • Barney's "Nothing Suits You Like a Suit" music number.
      • The Wedding Bride episode.
    • Season 6:
      • Lily breaking the news to Marshall that his father died of heart-attack.
      • Barney meeting his father for the very first time and his What the Hell, Dad? rant to him.
      • Lily finding out that she's pregnant.
      • The Reveal of who's the groom of the wedding where Ted will finally meet the mother.
    • Season 7:
      • Ted and Victoria's reunion.
      • Robin finding out that she can't have children.
      • Robin rejecting Ted.
      • Lily giving birth.
      • Victoria running away with Ted.
      • The Reveal of who's the bride of the wedding where Ted will finally meet the mother.
    • Season 8:
    • Season 9:
      • The Mother appearing with teach member of the gang.
      • The Mother singing La Vie En Rose at the balcony while Ted is listening at the other side of the wall.
      • Marshall and Lily's "You are being selfish" argument.
      • Ted and Robin's Call Back conversation at the beach.
      • The aforementioned wedding.
      • Barney seeing his newborn daughter for the first time.
      • Ted finally meeting the mother.
      • The extremely controversial last five minutes of the show.
  • The Twilight Zone
  • Banshee
  • Breaking Bad
    • Season 1:
      • "I am awake."
      • Krazy 8's death
      • "This is not meth."
      • Walter standing in the middle of the desert in his underwear with a gun.
    • Season 2:
      • "Skank! Skank! Skank ass skank!"
      • The Better Call Saul commercial
      • "Stay out of my territory."
      • The last scene of "Phoenix".
    • Season 3:
      • Walter throwing a pizza on the roof.
      • Hank's fight with The Cousins.
      • "Run."
      • Gale's death.
    • Season 4:
      • Gus's use of the boxcutter in the season premiere.
      • "W.W. what could that stand for?"
      • Walt's "I am the one who knocks" speech to Skyler.
      • The final shot of "Crawl Space".
      • Gus and Hector's deaths in "Face Off".
      • "I won."
    • Season 5:
      • "Yeah, bitch! MAGNETS!"
      • "We're done when I say we're done!"
      • Todd shooting Drew Sharpe at the end of Dead Freight.
      • "I'm in the empire business."
      • "Say my name."
      • Either montage in "Gliding Over All" and the last scene of the episode.
      • Hank and Walt's confrontation in the garage.
      • Anything in "Ozymandias".
      • Walt's death in the last scene of "Felina".
  • One Tree Hill
    • Season 1:
      • Lucas and Nathan's duel in the pilot.
      • The "Nice hands, nice legs" exchange by Lucas and Peyton.
      • Brooke ambushing Lucas at the back of a car naked.
      • Lucas and Nathan accepting one another as brothers.
      • Haley and Nathan revealing to Lucas that they're married.
    • Season 2:
      • Haley kissing Chris Keller.
      • Dan being trapped inside a burning building.
      • Peyton meeting his biological mother.
    • Season 3:
    • Season 4:
      • Lucas attempting to shoot Dan.
      • Dan admitting his crime.
      • Peyton and Brooke vs. Psycho! Derek.
      • Loan shark Daunte trying to run-over Nathan.
      • Haley going into labor during graduation.
    • Season 5:
      • Nathan finally being able to walk again.
      • Dan saving his grandson from Nannie Carrie and threatening her to leave his family alone.
      • Dan returning Jamie to his parents after saving him from Nannie Carrie.
      • Lucas' "I hate you!" speech to Peyton.
      • The last few scenes of the Season Finale in tune to Haley's "Feel This".
    • Season 6:
      • Xavier beating Brooke.
      • Dan killing Carrie.
      • Peyton collapsing after her and Lucas' wedding.
      • Lucas' Heroic BSOD after Peyton's collapse.
      • Brooke and Julian becoming a couple.
      • Nathan playing in the NBA.
      • Lucas and Peyton riding the Comet going somewhere with their newborn daughter.
    • Season 7:
      • Dan humiliating the woman who is (falsely) claiming to be impregnated by Nathan.
      • Katie shooting Clay and Quinn.
    • Season 8:
      • Quinn vs. Katie.
      • Brooke and Julian's wedding.
      • The entire Series Fauxnale.
    • Season 9:
  • Sherlock:
  • Saved by the Bell: Arguably, Jessie's caffeine pill addiction and sub-sequential breakdown.
  • Arrow
    • Season 1:
    • Season 2:
      • Sara's return to Starling City as The Canary.
      • Sara and Nyssa kissing.
      • Slade being injected by the Mirakuru.
      • Shado's death.
      • Barry Allen getting struck by lightning.
      • Oliver wearing his Domino Mask for the first time.
      • Slade Wilson curb-stomping Team Arrow.
      • Roy Harper's Mirakuru outrage.
      • Moira's death.
      • Oliver vs. Slade.
      • Oliver leaving a furious Slade in an underground prison.
    • Season 3:
      • Sara's death.
      • Ra's Al-Ghul curb stomping Oliver in their duel.
      • Laurel's very first appearance as Black Canary.
      • Deadshot's death.
      • The Arrow, Arsenal and Black Canary being hunted down by the police.
      • Roy Harper faking his death.
      • Oliver and Felicity Smoak's sex scene.
      • Oliver's Evil Makeover and Evil Costume Switch as Al Sah-him.
      • Laurel's first use of the Canary Cry.
      • The remnants of Team Arrow and Katana and Ray Palmer vs. The League of Assassins.
      • Thea Queen's debut as Speedy.
  • The Flash (2014)
    • Season 1:
      • The Particle Accelerator malfunctioning.
      • Barry Allen getting struck by lightning.
      • Dr. Wells' Obfuscating Disability reveal.
      • Barry and Felicity kissing on the train.
      • A Hate Plague inflicted Barry vs. Oliver.
      • The Reverse-Flash beating Dr. Wells and curb-stomping the entire police force sans Eddie Thawne.
      • The Reverse-Flash curb-stomping Barry.
      • Dr. Wells revealing he has the Reverse-Flash suit.
      • Barry and Caitlin singing "Summer Nights".
      • Dr. Wells revealing he is the Reverse-Flash to General Eiling shortly before leaving him at Grodd's mercy.
      • "Harrison Wells" revealing his true identity as Eobard Thawne to Cisco Ramon and killing him.
      • Barry running so fast to counter the Weather Wizard's tidal wave and ends up time travelling.
      • The flashback where both The Flash and The Reverse-Flash are having a slug-fest.
      • Eobard Thawne killing and replacing the real Harrison Wells.
      • Cisco, Joe West and Quentin lance finding the corpse of the real Harrison Wells.
      • Cisco giving Laurel Lance a device that enables her to use the Canary Cry.
      • Eobard's "Dr. Wells" facade finally being exposed.
      • Barry, Firestorm and Oliver vs. Eobard Thawne.
      • The entire scene where Barry time travelling to the night his mother was murdered.
      • Eddie Thawne's Heroic Suicide so Eobard will be Ret Goned.
      • Barry running towards a wormhole in the Season Finale's final scene.
  • Young Bruce Wayne's Skyward Scream after his parents' murder in Gotham.
  • Dallas: J.R. getting shot and The Reveal in the next season.
  • Monty Python's Flying Circus:
    • Michael Palin's ship wrecked sailor announcing: "It's..." and his portrayal of Mr. Gumby note 
    • Terry Gilliam's animated gigantic crushing foot.
    • John Cleese note 's announcement: "And Now For Something Completely Different".
    • Terry Jones as the Naked Organist note 
    • The cast walking around in drag.
    • The "Dead Parrot" sketch, especially the part where Cleese uses a long series of euphemisms to specify the parrot is indeed dead, topping it off with: "This is an ex-parrot."
    • The "Nudge Nudge" sketch, especially Idle's "nudge, nudge, wink wink, say no more."
    • The "Ministry Of Silly Walks" sketch, especially when Cleese's Silly Walk.
    • Michael Palin's "Lumberjack Song".
    • The "Spam" sketch, most notably the singing Vikings.
    • "The Spanish Inquistion", who nobody expected.
    • "The Upperclass Twit of the Year" sketch, especially since it inspired the trope Upperclass Twit.
    • John Cleese selling an albatross
    • Michael Palin paying to have an argument with John Cleese and regretting it immediately.
    • The cast playing Australians who are all named Bruce.
    • John Cleese complaining to Terry Jones about his "Crunchy Frog" product.
    • Palin and Cleese performing The Fish-Slapping Dance.
    • People laughing themselves to death because of "The Funniest Joke in the World"
    • "The Philospher's Football Match", actually from the German version of the show and used in the film Monty Python Live At The Hollywood Bowl.
    • Cleese bringing his dead mother in a bag to an Undertaker and being advised to eat her. Became notorious for its bad taste.
  • Dawson's Creek: Dawson's infamous crying scene at the end of the third season.
  • House of Cards (US): Zoe's death.

    Literature 
  • The Adventures Of Baron Munchhausen: The baron sitting on a cannonball and flying through the air.
  • Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: Huckleberry Finn (and Jim) travelling down the Mississippi on a raft.
  • The Adventures of Pinocchio: Pinocchio's nose growing because he tells a lie.
  • The Adventures of Tom Sawyer: Tom and Huckleberry Finn painting a fence white and fooling other children to do it for them.
  • Aesop's Fables:
  • Alice's Adventures in Wonderland:
    • Alice following the White Rabbit. The scene where she meets the Cheshire Cat for the first time. Later meeting the Mad Hatter and March Hare at their Tea Party. The Red Queen ordering people to be beheaded. The hookah smoking caterpillar is also a famous scene.
    • Through the Looking-Glass: Alice meeting Humpty Dumpty, the story of Jabberwocky, Alice meeting Tweedledee and Tweedledum.
  • Arabian Nights
  • The Bible
    • The Crucifixion.
    • There are many more, for instance from the Old Testament Adam and Eve eating of the forbidden fruit, the story of Noah's Ark, Abraham almost sacrificing his son Isaac, the parting of the Red Sea, Moses coming down from Mount Sinai with the Ten Commandments, Samson bringing down the temple in Gaza, the fight of David against Goliath. From the New Testament the Annunciation, the birth of Christ, the Last Supper...
  • A Christmas Carol:
    • Scrooge saying: "Bah, humbug!"
    • Scrooge being visited by the ghost of Jacob Marley.
    • Scrooge being brought to the church yard by the Ghost of the Future and seeing his own name on the grave.
  • The Divine Comedy: Virgil guiding Dante through Hell.
  • A Dog of Flanders: Nello and Patrache entering the Antwerp Cathedral, seeing the painting by Rubens which they wanted to see all their lives, then dying that same night from the cold.
  • Don Quixote charging against windmills.
  • Dracula: Dracula first meeting Jonathan Harker and, when hearing the wolves howl outside his castle, say: "Listen to them, the children of the night what music they make."
  • The Dresden Files: Harry riding Zombie Sue through Chicago.
  • Fairy tales, later collected by either Charles Perrault and/or The Brothers Grimm:
    • Bluebeard: The woman going into Bluebeard's chamber and discovering he is a serial killer. The final scene where she asks "Sister Anna, sister Anna, do you see anything yet", while she waits for her brothers to come in and rescue her.
    • The Bremen Town Musicians: The rooster standing on the back of the cat, the cat on the dog's back, the dog on the donkey's back. In the context of the tale they do this to scare off the robbers inside their own home.
    • Cinderella: Cinderella losing her slipper on the stairs.
    • East of the Sun and West of the Moon: The young bride riding her bear-husband through the woods. It's iconic of the story and frequently the illustration used on book covers.
    • The Frog Prince: The princess sitting on the edge of the well with the frog, who has just retrieved her golden ball. Also a scene that actually does not happen in-story: The princess kissing the frog.
    • Hansel and Gretel: Hansel dropping the bread crumbs in the forest, Hansel and Gretel eating from the Gingerbread House, Gretel pushing the witch inside the oven.
    • Hop-o'-My-Thumb: Hop O' My Thumb leaving the trail of bread crumbs behind in the forest note . The giant slaying his daughters' throats under confusion that these are Hop O' My Thumb and his brothers. Hop O' My Thumb trying on the giant's boots.
    • Little Red Riding Hood: Little Red asking the wolf: "Why grandmother, what big ears/eyes/teeth you have?"
    • Puss in Boots: The cat trying on the boots. The moment where he tells everybody the "Marquis of Carabas is drowning".
    • Rapunzel: The prince climbing up the tower hanging on to Rapunzel's long hair.
    • Rumpelstiltskin: Rumpelstiltskin weaving straw into gold. The scene where he dances outside and sings his name, while the servant overhears this.
    • The Six Servants: The servant with the long neck is the most famous character in the Netherlands, due to him being the mascotte of the fairy tale attraction park De Efteling.
    • Sleeping Beauty: Sleeping Beauty pricking herself on the spinning wheel, then sleeping for a hundred years note 
    • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: The queen standing in front of the mirror and saying: "Mirror, mirror, on the wall: who's the fairest one of all?" Snowhite biting the poisoned apple.
    • The Wolf and the Seven Young Kids: The wolf putting his whitened paw in front of the window pane and not being recognized by anyone.
  • The fairy tales of Hans Christian Andersen:
    • The Emperor's New Clothes: The emperor walking through the streets in the nude, until one little child finally notices the emperor is naked, which then spreads to the rest of the spectators.
    • The Little Match Girl: The girl striking her final match, then dying from the cold.
    • The Little Mermaid: The mermaid sitting on a rock. The original tale differs a lot from the Disney feature, especially the ending.
    • The Princess and the Pea: The princess lying on all those mattresses, then complaining she had a bad night because one of the servants had put a pea underneath one of the mattresses, thus proving she is a princess after all.
    • The Ugly Duckling: The duckling finally realizing he wasn't ugly, he was just another bird species, namely a swan.
  • The fairy tales of Joseph Jacobs
    • Goldilocks: The little bear claiming his porridge is too hot. The bears later discovering Goldilocks inside their bed.
    • Jack And The Bean Stalk: Jack climbing the bean stalk. The giant saying: "Fee Fei Fo Fum: I smell the blood of an Englishman."
    • The Three Little Pigs: The wolf blowing down the first two houses.
  • Frankenstein:
    • Frankenstein being brought to life at night in the castle.
  • Gulliver's Travels: Gulliver being bound to the ground by the people of Lilliput. The scene where he defeats the enemies' battle ships by standing in the sea is also famous.
  • Hans Brinker, or The Silver Skates: Hans preventing a flood by sticking his finger into the dyke. Also note, that this is actually a story-within-the-story.
  • The Iliad: Priamus on his knees before Achilles begging him for the body of his son Hector.
  • The Odyssey
    • Penelope weaving the funeral cloth for Laertes at day and then unraveling it at nights.
    • Odysseus outwitting Polyphemus and then making the mistake of revealing his real name.
    • Odysseus in the Underworld, especially meeting with the shades of his mother and of Achilles.
    • Odysseus bound to the mast as his ship sails past the Sirens' rock.
    • Odysseus returning to his home disguised as a beggar. The dog! The dog!
    • Odysseus shooting the arrow through the twelve axes and then slaughtering the suitors.
  • The Legend of Sleepy Hollow: The Headless Horseman riding his horse in the dead of night.
  • The Lord of the Rings: Gandalf facing the Balrog. "You cannot pass."
    • Frodo standing on a ledge, preparing to throw the ring into the fires of Mount Doom.
  • Bilbo's riddle-duel with Gollum in The Hobbit. "What has it got in its pocketses?"
    • Also his confrontation with Smaug.
  • Max Havelaar: The opening scene, where Havelaar states: "I'm a merchant in coffee".
  • The pursuit through the sewers of Paris in Les Misérables.
  • In the Nibelungenlied there's Siegfried's murder, Hagen sinking the treasure in the Rhine, and the Burgundians' final stand in Etzel's burning castle.
  • Oliver Twist:
    • Oliver asking: "Please sir, I want some more" while being in the orphanage and getting sold off as a result.
    • Oliver joining the gang of Fagin.
  • Parzival: In both Chrétien de Troyes' and Wolfgang von Eschenbach's version of the story the scene in which Percivale is thrown into a mazement looking at three drops of blood in the snow. Wolfram, who unlike Chrétien got to finish his epic poem, also has the scene at the end where Percivale finally asks Amfortas: "What ails you, uncle?"
  • The Pied Piper of Hamelin: The Pied Piper leading the rats and later the children away by playing the flute.
  • The Raven: The raven sitting on the bust of Pallas, saying "Nevermore".
  • Reynard The Fox: The animals arriving in court to complain about Reynard.
  • Robinson Crusoe discovering the footprints of another man on his island.
  • The Sorrows of Young Werther: Werther first meeting Lotte as she cuts bread and butter for her eight younger siblings. Werther on his knees before Lotte. Lotte before Werther's grave.
  • The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde: Jekyll transforming into Hyde.
  • Struwwelpeter: Struwwelpeter's hair and nails growing and having him change into a tree, because he didn't wash himself. The thumbsucker child having his thumbs cut off by a man with a large scissor.
  • The Tell Tale Heart: The murderer being tormented by the knowledge that the body is buried underneath the floor.
  • The Three Musketeers, D' Artagnan's triple duel, which turns into a fight of all four of them against the Cardinal's guards.
  • Till Eulenspiegel: Till walking the tightrope with the shoes of all the spectators.
  • Tom Robinson's trial from To Kill a Mockingbird.
  • Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea: The giant squid attacking the submarine.
  • Warrior Cats:
    • Firestar's Awesome Moment of Crowning
    • Scourge one-shoting Tigerstar in a very Cruel and Unusual Death.
    • Brambeclaw killing his half-brother via ramming a stick through his throat.
    • Ashfur trying to burn Squirrelflight and her kits alive, both for the scene itself and for the Wham Line that single-handedly shaped the next seven books in the series.
    • The climactic battle between Firestar and Tigerstar at the end of the Omen of the Stars arc.
  • Winnie-the-Pooh: Winnie eating honey with his head stuck entirely into the pot.

    Music 
  • Abba: The band how they appeared during their winning performance in the Eurovision Song Contest of 1974.
  • Louis Armstrong: Laughing and hamming it up with a big grin, holding a white handkerchief too.
  • Josephine Baker: Dancing around in her banana skirt.
  • The Beatles:
  • David Bowie: His Ziggy Stardust image.
  • James Brown: Faking that he is too tired to go on anymore and seemingly walking off stage, while a band member puts a cloak over his back, only to suddenly leap back and grab the mike again.
  • Cab Calloway: Calloway dancing around in his hepcat white suit and fedora hat.
  • Bob Dylan holding lyric cards while his song is playing in the most famous scene of Dont Look Back.
  • Dizzy Gillespie playing the trumpet, with bulbous cheeks.
  • Michael Jackson
    • The preteen Jackson dancing and singing alongside The Jackson Five.
    • The Moon Walk Dance, complete with one glove on his hand.
    • Jackson dancing on the illuminating tiles in the music video of "Billie Jean".
    • Jackson and the rivaling gang members dancing together near the end of the music video of "Beat It".
    • Jackson transforming into a werecat and later a zombie in the music video of Thriller, which leads to the thriller dance that has often been parodied. Also the final shot where he is revealed to have scary cat eyes.
    • The scenes where he dances in a leather jacket along with fellow gang members in the music video of Bad.
    • The gravity lean scene in the music video of "Smooth Criminal".
    • The racial face morphing scene in the music video of "Black Or White" and the (often ommitted) scenes afterwards where he dances in a back alley, hits a car with a crowbar and changes into a panther.
  • Madonna: Appearing on stage in her Gaultier bra.
  • Freddie Mercury: The moustached front man parading around on stage with his microphone stand.
  • Queen: The opening shot of the music video for "Bohemian Rhapsody", where the band members are seen as four heads together. This has become so iconic that is has been imitated and parodied often.
  • Elvis Presley
    • Elvis shaking his hips on the Ed Sullivan Show.
    • Elvis dancing with prisoners in Jailhouse Rock.
    • Elvis in his white glitter suit during his Las Vegas period. Obligatory to that image are the phrases: "Thank you, thank you very much" and the phrase: "Elvis has left the building".
  • Frank Sinatra: The young singer in his Cool Hat and suit, with the often imitated Coat Over the Shoulder pose.

    Pro Wrestling 

    Sports 
  • Ask people in Chicago, and they'll tell you that the Cubs lost the 2003 NLCS because of Steve Bartman. Forget the fact that they couldn't get an out the rest of the inning, and then lost the next game. No, it all comes down to that one play.
    • It might make Cubs fans feel better to realize that their Arch-Nemesis, the St. Louis Cardinals, had essentially the same thing happen in the 1985 World Series, when the Denkinger Call, a blown umpiring call, entered Cardinals infamy, with the point that they couldn't get out of the inning either, and then also lost the next game. However, it probably doesn't.
  • Similar with Buckner in the 1986 World Series. The Red Sox had already blown a two run lead with two outs in the 10th inning. Buckner's error allowed the third (albeit winning) run to score. The Red Sox also blew a three run lead the next game to lose the Series. Ask most people why the Red Sox lost that series though, and they'll tell you about the Buckner play.
  • Michael Jordan hitting "The Shot" over Craig Ehlo to eliminate the Cavs in Game 5.
  • Carlton Fisk waving a home run ball fair in the 1975 World Series. Of course, Boston lost the series to the Big Red Machine, one of the greater teams in history, but the Fisk home run is what people most focus on.
  • 2013 ALCS. The Red Sox down by four, bottom of the eighth inning in game 2, David Ortiz hits a grand slam, culminating into a walk-off run in the ninth. The image in every New England newspaper the next day was of a BPD officer in the bullpen with his arms raised in excitement as Tigers outfielder Torii Hunter went tumbling into the bullpen trying to catch the ball (though his excitement was more over the home run than Hunter doing a flip over the wall).
  • 1980 Miracle on Ice "Do you believe in miracles?! YES!" Also, the team celebrating after Eruzione's goal to take the lead.
  • The FIFA World Cup has a few.
    • Pelé's goal in the 1958 final, and Maradona's goal versus England in 1986 (no, not the one he punched the ball!).
    • The 1954 final: Helmut Rahn's winning goal against Hungary ("Aus dem Hintergrund müsste Rahn kommen...") and the West German team lifting coach Sepp Herberger and captain Fritz Walther on their shoulders in the rain after the handing-over of the Jules Rimet Cup. Doubles as a signature scene for the German national team.
    • The extra time of the "Game of the Century", Italy vs. West Germany 4-3, in Mexico 1970. Fans remember how quickly and often the score changed that they tend to forget how boring the regular 90 minutes were in comparison. (Italy took an early 1-0 lead and then defended it by hook and by crook until Karl-Heinz Schnellinger equalized in the 90th minute).
    • The 2006 final: French football icon Zinedine Zidane headbutting Italian defender Marco Materazzi and getting a red card on his last international game.
  • 2004 ALCS Dave Roberts stealing second base.
  • Super Bowl:
    • John Elway being hit by tackles from both sides, spinning in midair and slamming into the ground, on his way to leading the Denver Broncos to winning their first Super Bowl.
    • Janet Jackson's halftime show "wardrobe malfunction" at Super Bowl XXXVIII.
    • Super Bowl XLII: Quarterback Eli Manning throwing a pass after escaping a sack that was caught by third string wide receiver David Tyree against his helmet while being pulled to the ground.
    • Super Bowl XLVII: The power outage a few minutes into the second half of the game.
    • Super Bowl XLIX: Combined with Down to the Last Play; it seemed that the image of Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Jermaine Kearse making his juggling catch was going to be the game's biggest moment. Two plays later, New England Patriots rookie cornerback Malcolm Butler (who played a role in said catch) one-upped that by intercepting a Russell Wilson pass intended for Ricardo Lockette at the goal line, saving the Patriots' victory and humiliating the Seahawks for making an awful play call.
    • For more Super Bowl goodness, there's always Scott Norwood's wide-right field goal; or Kevin Dyson coming up "One Yard Short" for the Titans.
  • For NASCAR: the fatal crash of Dale Earnhardt at the 2001 Daytona 500.
  • Pittsburgh Pirates Hall-of-Famer Bill Mazeroski was regarded as a superb second baseman; his batting was so unremarkable that it nearly cost him his chance to be in the Hall. What is he remembered for? In the Game Seven of the 1960 World Series, he cracked a walk-off home run that won his team the Series.
  • The Green Bay Packers:
    • The Packers carrying Vince Lombardi off the field after winning Super Bowl II, his final game as the team's head coach.
    • Another Packers example is Brett Favre ripping off his helmet and running off the field after throwing a touchdown pass in Super Bowl XXXI on Green Bay's second play from scrimmage.
  • "The Catch", in which Dwight Clark caught a pass from Joe Montana to win the 1982 NFC Championship.
  • "The Play". Lateral after lateral allowed Cal to win the 1982 Big Game with no time left on the clock, with the final receiver even having to run through the Stanford marching band to reach the end zone.
  • Jim Marshall will forever live in American football infamy for running the football the wrong way in a 1964 game against the 49ers.
    • At least the Vikings won that game. Roy Riegels of the California Golden Bears ran the wrong way in the 1929 Rose Bowl against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, only being stopped a couple yards from his own end zone by his own teammate before getting dogpiled. The next play was a blocked punt which yield two points to Georgia Tech, the ultimate difference in an 8-7 loss.
  • A weird, but awesome, aversion from the sport of mountaineering: "The Belay", in which climber Pete Schoening saved almost his whole climbing team on K2 from a fatal fall, maybe the most remembered moment in the entire sport — yet absolutely nobody saw it but Schoening, including, in all likelihood, the men whose lives he saved.

    Theatre 

    Video Games 

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Felix the Cat: Felix walking and turning around while thinking.
  • Donald Duck: Donald getting angry and jumping up and down, while waving his fists.
  • Goofy: Goofy saying "Something's wrong here?", "Oh, the world owns me a living" or "Garssh!"
  • Popeye: Popeye, nearly defeated, grabbing his can of spinach, opening it and becoming so strong he can defeat the villain.
  • Looney Tunes:
    • Porky Pig concluding a cartoon with the line: "That's all, folks!"
    • Daffy Duck jumping up and down, shouting: "Woo Hoo".
    • Bugs Bunny asking his antagonist: "What's up, doc?"
    • Wile E. Coyote falling from a cliff.
  • Tom and Jerry: Tom's painful yell.
  • The Flintstones: Fred Flintstone shouting "Yabba Dabba Doo".
  • Yogi Bear: Yogi stealing a picknick basket.
  • Spider-Man: The Animated Series: Spider-Man finds himself hanging upside-down in front of a skyscraper window, seeing his reflection with the never-before-seen black costume. The original comic didn't have it, but every version since has had it. Even Spider-Girl has Mayday swinging past a building, red suit in real life and black suit in the reflection.
  • The Simpsons:
    • Homer shouting "D'oh!" when realizing he's done something stupid.
    • The couch gags.
    • Homer strangling Bart.
    • From the episode Bart The Daredevil: Homer plummeting down Springfield Gorge and hitting every single rock.
    • Bart writing on the chalkboard in detention and saying "Eat My Shorts" or "Don't Have A Cow, Man".
  • South Park: Kenny's many deaths.
    • The infamous scene from "Scot Tenorman Must Die" where Cartman reveals to Scott that his parents were murdered and ground up into the chili he's been eating.
    • Timmy's call "Timmy!" has also become a notorious meme.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars: One or two per season.
    • The entirety of "Rookies", as it proved that the series could easily take a darker turn, and Cad Bane's introduction.
    • The opening Cad Bane arc for season two.
    • The Mortis trilogy in season three, where Anakin comes to terms with his destiny; as well as Ventress being abandoned by Dooku and her subsequent creation of Savage Oppress.
    • For season four, the Umbara arc, a powerful four-parter dealing with the Clones' identities as well as some genuinely chilling racism directed at them. We also have Savage finding Darth Maul, who survived his death a decade earlier.
    • For season five, Darth Sidious battling Darth Maul and Savage Oppress for control of the Sith. We then get, almost immediately afterward, Ahsoka's defection from the Jedi after losing faith in them for betraying her.
    • Season six has the Order 66 arc, particularly Fives' Doomed by Canon death, and the very poignant finale with Yoda battling Sidious in his mind over Anakin's fate.
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender had more or less one per season:
    • The Season 1 Finale, a.k.a. Koizilla.
    • "The Tales of Ba Sing Se" for Season 2, particularly The Tale of Iroh, or possibly the subversion of Zuko's long-anticipated Heel-Face Turn.
    • More or less the whole series finale for season 3, but especially the Lion-Turtle, the battle between Zuko and Azula, and the music for this scene, and Energybending. "The Ember Island Players" also took what would normally be a Clip Show and turned it into a fan-favorite episode.
    • Katara and Sokka discovering Aang frozen in the iceberg.
  • The Legend of Korra
  • Super Mario World: "That's Mama Luigi to you, Mario!"
  • Batman: The Animated Series: "I am vengeance. I am the night. I am BATMAN!"
  • Adventure Time has a lot of wacky over-the-top scenes, so it's possible that every episode has one scene that stands out among the rest. Although, a special mention goes out to...
  • Moral Orel is most well known for the hunting trip. Ya know, where Orel is shot in the leg? It's considered the scene where the entire series goes from kinda dark to pitch black.
  • Mickey Mouse: Mickey whistling while turning the steering wheel on Steamboat Willie. In general Mickey's nervous laugh, "Ha-Ha".
  • Winx Club: Flora blowing some magic powder. The scene was used in every merchandise commercial up to season 3, often with whatever the commercial was for edited on Flora's hands, giving the impression she's magically delivering it to some little girl.
  • Most kid's cartoons with lyrics in the opening sequence tend to have said opening sequence become one of these, as people become familiar/well up in nostalgia at the sound of the show's lyrics.
  • Bananaman: Eric eating a banana and transforming into Bananaman.
  • Captain Planet and the Planeteers: The Planeteers summoning Captain Planet.
  • Casper the Friendly Ghost: Casper claims he hasn't got any friends. He meets several people or animals who all scream: "A G-g-g-ghost!", then run off scared whenever they see him.
  • Dan Vs.: Dan's Skyward Scream.
  • He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983) and She-Ra: Princess of Power have their respective protagonist's transformation sequence.
    • The He-Man parody of Four Non-Blondes' 'What's Going On'.
  • Dinobot's death and funeral in Beast Wars; not only widely considered the single best episode/scene of the series, but also served as the moment the show's beard completed it's growth.
  • Gargoyles:
    • Goliath finding most of his clan slaughtered at the castle in the first episode.
    • The end of "Her Brother's Keeper", in which it's revealed that Xanatos deliberately turned Elisa's brother into Talon. Not only did it cement how much of a scumbag Xanatos really was, but it was the first episode with a completely bitter ending.
    • "The passcode is: ALONE."
  • Steven Universe: Garnet's battle with Jasper in Prison Break.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: The ending of "Band Geeks."

Alternative Title(s):

Iconic Scene