The Enterprise rises again.
- The opening away mission. Prime Directive be damned, the Nibirans are worshiping the Enterprise as a god, and the ship and her crew deserve it.
- Special mention to the earlier reveal that the Enterprise herself is hiding on the ocean floor.
- The Enterprise leaving the ocean is awe-inspiring in a subtle way, one often overlooked in ST: they're only using simple thrusters to power themselves out. While full specs of starships are uncommon, it's certainly a fact that they weigh at least several hundred-thousands of tons, if not more on the largest. In space this isn't too much of an issue once they pick up momentum, but the Enterprise is under the gravity of a planet, and dealing with the crushing pressures of an ocean. Yet their thrusters are fully sufficient to have them rise out of the ocean, looking all the world like a god to the Nibirans, and for good reason at the power needed to lift a starship under said conditions.
- Pike telling Kirk exactly what he's needed to be told since he drove that damn car off a cliff. He is arrogant, he doesn't know how to follow the rules, he does think the rules don't apply to him, and he is a pain in the ass. Kirk desperately needed some tough love punctuated with a verbal asskicking, and Pike was more than happy to supply both. Even better, when push came to shove, Kirk shut up, listened, and learned the lessons he needed to learn. A CMOA for Parental Substitutes if anything ever was.
- Kirk taking Harrison's ship down after he attacks Starfleet by tossing his weapon into the ship's turbine.
- Scotty refusing to bring the suspect torpedoes aboard ship. Bringing them aboard when he doesn't know what they are or what harm they might do would be complete dereliction of his duty as chief engineer; so he refuses to do it, and when he can't reason with Kirk, he resigns on the spot. Everyone is uneasy about the mission, but he's the only one who forces the issue, even though it costs him his ship and his career. For a character who is usually comic relief, it's an impressive principled stand against Just Following Orders.
- Acting Captain Hikaru Sulu, who is forced to take command with Kirk, Spock and Scotty off the ship. He's never sat in the big chair, and Bones is convinced that he can't bluff Harrison into surrendering. John Cho then channels George Takei's Captain Sulu and throws down the gauntlet, telling Harrison on an open channel exactly what he will do.
Sulu: Attention: John Harrison. This is Captain Hikaru Sulu of the USS Enterprise. A shuttle of highly trained officers is on its way to your location. If you do not surrender to them immediately, I will unleash the entire payload of advanced long-range torpedoes currently locked on to your location. You have two minutes to confirm your compliance. Refusal to do so will result in your obliteration. If you test me... you will fail.
Mr Sulu, remind me never to piss you off.
- The wide smile Sulu gives after that just clinches it.
- Kirk makes an offhand Badass Boast while escaping with Spock and Uhura from a pursuing ship.
Spock: This ship has no offensive capabilities.
Kirk: It's got us; give me all six fuel cells.
- Uhura walks right up to a squad of Klingons, looks their leader right in the eye and appeals to the Klingon code of honor to ask for help finding Harrison. It doesn't work, but she gets a hell of a lot of points for trying.
Kirk: [as he and Spock watch Uhura approach the Klingons] Whatever it is, it isn't going to work.
Spock: It is the only logical solution. If you interrupt her now, you will not only incur the wrath of the Klingons, but that of Lieutenant Uhura as well.
- Fast-Roping Klingons.
- John Harrison single-handedly taking down an entire platoon of Klingons and their armed transport ships with what looks like a sub-machine gun and a friggin' cannon that looks like it was ripped from a fighter.
- Later, him just shrugging off Kirk's attempts to beat him up.
- Kirk himself does well against the Klingons. He goes toe-to-toe with a bunch of them in hand to hand combat and survives, despite being physically weaker.
- Spock and Uhura also get to do some damage too. The former shows to be a damn good shoot while the latter knifes a Klingon in the groin.
- Harrison decides to stand in one location, on high ground with no cover and a backlight, while he takes on a platoon of Klingons. He doesn't even seem to be breaking a sweat. It's quite possible he was deliberately drawing aggro from our heroes.
- Harrison's Hannibal Lecture to both Kirk and Spock in the brig.
: I am better. Kirk
: At what? Harrison
- According to the novelization, that line "was spoken not as a boast, but as a matter of fact by one who knew it to be so".
- Anytime Harrison talks to anyone. He's just got this smooth way of talking that lets you know exactly where you stand in his eyes.
- Kirk confronting Harrison in the prison bay:
Let me explain what's happening here: You are a criminal
. I watched you murder innocent men and women. I was authorized to end you
! And the only
reason why you are still
alive is because I am allowing it. So Shut. Your. Mouth.
- Four words from John Harrison: My name is Khan. Cue audiences freaking out.
- Villainous example. The first time the USS Vengeance shows up and how she proceeds to chase the Enterprise down in warp and deliver an utter No-Holds-Barred Beatdown.
- Carol attempts to try to dissuade her father from killing everyone aboard the Enterprise. She fails as he beams her off the ship, but she did give it her all and slaps her father. She also manages to elbow one of her dad's mooks in the face.
Carol: I am ashamed to be your daughter.
- Scotty saving the Enterprise by forcing the Vengeance to reboot, taking most of its systems offline in the process. Man's a miracle worker.
- The entire Enemy Mine between Khan and Kirk is awesome in itself, particularly when they're shooting across space to enter Admiral Marcus' ship.
- Kirk confronting Admiral Marcus on the Vengeance. Admiral Marcus is the head of Starfleet - he's not just Kirk's boss, he's Kirk's bosses' bosses' boss. He gives a long speech about how war is coming, and tells Kirk that Kirk will have to kill him before he surrenders. Kirk's response: "I'm not gonna kill you, sir. But I could stun your ass and drag you out of that chair."
- Khan crushing Admiral Marcus' head.
John Harrison/ Khan: YOU SHOULD HAVE LET ME SLEEP.
- For some reason, the scene with Spock Prime stands out as awesome. "I'm not allowed to interfere by giving you knowledge of the future. It could corrupt the timeline." And then as they look like they're getting bummed out about that, Spock Prime then goes "That being said..." and goes on to tell them all about Khan. And it really says something that Spock considers Khan the most dangerous thing that the original NCC-1701 ever faced, considering all the mad gods, the planet-destroyers, mutants, entire empires, and worse that they faced. And all of this is with the knowledge that for Spock, it's been something like one hundred and fifty years since he faced Khan, and in another dimension, and still it left a psychological scar on him, one that says "Khan is involved. THINGS ARE DEADLY. SERIOUS."
- Spock would make an excellent lawyer.
- To clarify: Spock does give Khan back the torpedoes, but without the cryotubes that Khan really wants. He had McCoy successfully remove all the cryotubes from the torpedos and keep them in the medbay. Spock then beams them over to the Vengeance and sets off the automatic timer. You can bet that he's "laughing at the 'superior' intellect."
- It's very subtle, but Spock's delivery when he says, "Vulcans cannot lie. The torpedoes are yours." His expression and tone perfectly match those he gave the Vulcan High Council in the first movie: it's basically a big old Vulcan "fuck you."
- As the Enterprise is falling and the gravity is off, Kirk and Scotty have to make their way to Engineering to reboot the ship. A falling piece of metal throws them off their path and as Scotty and Kirk barely hang on to the rail, Kirk's grip slips and Chekov appears just in time to pull them up from certain death.
- The Enterprise has been badly pummeled; its warp drive is down, the auxiliary power is failing, it's got multiple hull breaches, and it's losing orbit and about to crash into a planet. It dips below the clouds... and then rises back above the clouds, its restored thrusters blasting at full power. It'll take more than gravity to take down the Enterprise!
- This incidentally happened because, with his ship falling out of the sky, Captain Kirk made the ultimate sacrifice, giving his life where in another universe, Spock did the same.
- Even if it exactly mirrored Spock's death from Wrath of Khan and even if it was only temporary, Kirk finally got a death worthy of him!
- When the Vengance has the Enterprise at gunpoint, Kirk attempts to bargain with Marcus, stating that the actions of his crew were at his orders, and offers to surrender on the condition that his crew be spared. It's at that exact second that Kirk fully knows the responsibility of sitting in the captain's chair.
- He still manages to sacrifice himself for the still-living crew, by climbing into the radioactive chamber. The awesome comes in when Scotty said that they wouldn't even be able to make the climb before the radiation killed them, but not only did Kirk make the climb, he still had the ability to keep going until the damn reactor was fixed. And still have enough gas in his proverbial engine to crawl all the way back to the door.
- And after all that he still manages to cling to life long enough to be put into stasis.
- Spock saying The Line. You know the one.
- Villainous example that happens afterwards. When Spock screams Khan's name, the camera then cuts to the Enterprise in the sky...and then we see the USS Vengeance, piloted by Khan all by himself, just almost brush past them as it continues to plummet down to San Francisco below. Even though it's stated that the Vengeance can be piloted by one person, it's outright mindblowing how Khan is able to do all this despite the Vengeance being heavily damaged by the torpedoes. Then there's the fact that, despite the Vengeance being outright totaled after it plows into the city, Khan is able to walk out with just a scratch. It just goes to show how much of an unstoppable badass Khan is.
- Spock vs. Khan.
- Spock managing to convey "You're a dead man, Khan!" after Kirk is killed without EVER speaking a word until afterwards.
- Spock hauls ass after Khan in a marathon sprint, easily overcoming every obstacle in his path - which includes a four-meter vertical leap and a thirty meter diagonal drop. Between speeding aircraft. The staccato beat of Spock's footfalls state his intentions quite clearly - "Khan, your scalp is mine, you're just too stubborn to save yourself the asskicking you have to know that I am about to give you by tearing it off yourself and handing it to me in advance."
- Even better, Spock wins the first phase of the fight by attacking Khan where he's most vulnerable: his mind.
- Also Khan shrugging off the Vulcan nerve pinch, painfully, but still successfully. Normal people just collapse into a boneless heap.
- And then Uhura beams in to save her boyfriend when Spock was being squeezed to death by Khan.
- It's two superhumans/advanced beings in an Interesting Situation Duel. And it's done well.
- Khan has spent half his time kicking the ever-loving hell out of every human he meets... and then he goes up against an extremely pissed-off Spock, and discovers Vulcans are a lot tougher than normal human beings.
- Kirk punched Khan repeatedly with literally no result, yet Spock breaks his arm, flips him a couple of times, punches the tar out of him, and even assaults Khan's mind. Hell, if Uhura hadn't intervened, Spock would have successfully killed him. Beware the Quiet Ones indeed.
- Hell, she managed to save both men from being beaten to death at each other's hands. Saving Khan as mentioned above, and saving Spock moments earlier, by distracting Khan by shooting several phaser blasts at him, all of which pretty much rolled off him like water balloons.
- Spock's Improvised Weapon in the fight, where he just tears a hunk of metal off of the vehicle they're on and knocks seven bells out of Khan with it.
- Spock breaking Khan's arm is also a nice little Call-Back to an earlier taunt from Khan to Spock: "You cannot even break your orders, Mr. Spock. How can you expect to break bone?"
- Spock has extra credit for winning that fight, considering that going by the old Star Trek canon, an enhanced human like Khan is five times stronger than a normal human, whereas a Vulcan is only three times stronger. Thus he held his own against (though he was overpowered eventually), and defeated (although with some help) someone almost twice as strong as himself.
- This commentary of when Spock truly beat the shit out of Khan.
- We hear the origin of the show's famous Opening Narration. It turns out to be something Captain Pike said to Kirk.
- A Genius Bonus for some, McCoy broke his Hippocratic Oath to bring Kirk back from the dead , and did it without a second's hesitation. That's how deeply he cares for his friend and Captain.
These comics are shown as flashback of Khan
through his statements at his trial, so we can't say how accurate they are
, but as it is, they are awesome
- Khan, way before becoming a super soldier, when he was just Noonien Singh, a crippled young man with only one leg. When another boy starts bullying him for no reason, and punches him across the face, Noonien curbstomps him with his crutch. Maybe the bully should've left him alone instead of provoking him unnecessarily
- A swift move to the legs, sweeping the bully legs from under him, followed by going to town on his face till its a bloody mess. Doubles as Nightmare Fuel
- Heck pretty much the entirety of his tie-in comics is a long list of Moment of Awesome
- Noonien digging a tunnel out of the facility where he and the other Augment children were being kept.
- The scientist head revealing they have implanted chips in their brains to paralyses them when they try to escape.
- Noonien stabbing himself with his sword to see the limits of his Healing Factor. He almost died, but he doesn't care.
- The Augment children progressing at a much faster rate than the world outside was noted by the scientists. Noonien then shows how much they've come when he requests the head scientist to come to the courtyard, then gives him a box full of the implanted chips, revealing that they had removed the chips by performing brain surgery on themselves, before crushing his skull
- The Augments long term coup of the planet, contacting the other Augment facilities over the world and taking control of them, then progressing their abilities and getting to know the outside world while keeping their true nature secret, then placing themselves in several influential positions in all countries, then launching their plan by nuking the capitals of Russia and USA, and winning the war and subjugating the whole world was one long villainous CMOA.
- Noonien taking up the name Khan.
- Khan admitting the reason that he became the most just ruler among among Augment rulers was not out of compassion but pride, i.e., hsi pride refused to let his be as selfish as his fellow Augments.
- Khan barehandely curbstomping another Augment ruler, who tried to invade his kingdom in personal combat, while his opponent was armed with a knife, showing that simply having equal strength and speed won't cut it, all the while revealing he foresaw his opponents plans and let him advance to until they are overconfident enough Khan's army would have and advantage, and thus they are now crushing his opponent's forces.
- The humans developing a biological weapon which targets only the Augments, forcing them to flee the planet itself since it was too complex for the Augments to devise a cure in time, despite their technological and intellectual superiority. A Moment of Awesome for human potential if there ever was.
- Another one of Khan's companion rulers admitting that it was their arrogance that defeated them before dying.
- Khan single-handedly infiltrating Kronos, and placing a bomb in their moon Praxis which would cause a chain reaction powerful enough to destroy it.
- Khan using his skills to outmaneuver every computer expert in the Section 31 facility.
- Khan independently completed the transwarp technique. Thus the transwarp device he used in the movie was one he built himself and had no need of Scotty's discoveries.
- Admiral Marcus outgambitting Khan, and turning the tables on him when Khan tries to ambush the General at his home when alone. Marcus reveals that he was always prepared for something like that, showing robot sentries with their weapons targeting Khan.
- Khan gets one the next second revealing that he had an escape plan in case things went south.
- The Crew.
- Visual Effects of Awesome:
- The Enterprise hiding in the alien ocean during the opening away mission - particularly when it leaves said ocean.
- A starship crashing into the Pacific Ocean in San Francisco.
- The Reveal of the USS Vengeance.