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Awesome / Superman: The Animated Series

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  • Superman starts off with a seriously awesome moment in his very first major fight of the series. Kaznian terrorist John Corben has just stolen the Lexo-Skel Suit 5000, which at that point is considered the single most powerful fighting thing on the planet (as the people were not yet familiar with superheroes). After taking some punishment, Superman stops holding back and removes the cyborg's limbs, slams it into the ground, and rips the metal covering the pilot's chair. He pulls Corben out and says, "Shall we go a few rounds without the suit?" Corben whimpers his surrender, Lois calls in the story, and the world of crime and crimefighting is changed forever.
    • Supes has another, much more low-key one at the end of the episode. After giving the silent treatment to Luthor when he tries to convince the Big Blue to work for him, an enraged Lex demands that he "Say something!" and throws the battlesuit model at him. Superman catches the model, crushes it into dust, and further enrages Lex with five simple words: "I'll be watching you, Luthor." In addition to striking the perfect note in starting Supes' and Lex's relationship, it shows that the Man of Steel can be just as intimidating when he's not throwing punches.
  • The three-part episode "World's Finest" had a scene that established exactly what the relationship between Superman and Batman would be. When he confronts Batman in the midst of roughing up some mobsters, Superman gets grabbed and judo-thrown across the room. (The look of utter surprise on his face as he lands is excellent.) Superman then peers through Batman's mask with his x-ray vision and discovers Bruce Wayne underneath. After a heated argument that ends with kryptonite, Superman returns home and while changing into Clark Kent, finds a tracer on his cape. Looking out over the skyline, he sees Batman on a very far away rooftop with binoculars looking back; Batman gives him a mocking salute and vanishes into the shadows. Clark grits his teeth and crushes the tracer between his fingertips.
    • Also, The Joker. When he comes to Metropolis, everyone underestimates him and Batman as powerless nuts who are no real threat to anyone, from mob bosses to Lex Luthor to Superman himself. He then proceeds to show everyone why underestimating him is generally a bad (IE: fatal) idea, fooling everyone he comes across and blowing up half of Metropolis before he gets taken down. His best moment is completely outwitting Superman, getting the drop on him with a statue made of Kryptonite and some well placed acid, dancing around his weakened body and torturing him while laughing maniacally, in one of the more sadistic Break the Haughty moments in Western Animation. Worst of all, he apparently only let Superman think he won at first so that he could kill him in front of a kidnapped Lois Lane. And, if it weren't for the timely intervention of Batman, he would have succeeded.
      Joker: Awww... What's the matter Supey? No more steam in the ol' locomotive?
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    • This one's almost nothing but Moments of Awesome! One of the best comes when Joker "borrows" one of Luthor's giant killer robots and sics it on Batman, which chases him and later Lois all around town, resisting all the punishment Batman can throw at it. Finally, it corners them and is moving in for the kill when Superman arrives and casually smashes it with one blow, while wearing an expression that clearly says "You may be the Goddamn Batman, but I'm still the Man of Steel."
      Superman: "Did I miss anything?"
    • As for Batman, he sneaks into Lex Luthor's penthouse, knocks out Mercy without turning around when she pulls a gun on him and scares Luthor half to death before the Mooks break in. Before, Luthor thought Batman was some nut in a cape the Joker was too lame to kill off. Next scene, Luthor decides to kill the Joker because he exposed him to the Goddamn Batman.
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    • Somebody launches a missile right through Clark Kent's apartment. Clark catches it with one hand.
    • One could argue the three-parter in general is a CMOA, not just for being a Superman/Batman story, but also for establishing the DC Animated Universe.
  • The Kents' Moment of Awesome comes in a time-travel episode, where Brainiac travels to Smallville to try and kill Superman while he's still a teenager. When Clark leaves the basement to confront Brainiac, Pa Kent grabs a shovel and goes to follow, while Martha tells him not to be a fool — because he'll need something bigger than a shovel. A minute later, Brainiac and Clark battle it out in the family's barn, and Brainiac seems to have the upper hand...and then Ma and Pa Kent open fire on him with double-barrelled shotguns. Sure, it didn't have much effect aside from getting Clark some time to recover, but it takes balls to take on a super-powered homicidal robot with buckshot.
    • Followed by Clark ripping Brainiac's arm off, and using it to whack him into the sun. Plus, given that this is a Brainiac from far in the future, it's perfectly justified to assume that this actually does kill him for good.
  • Any time one of the Lanterns recites the Oath is a Moment of Awesome in my book. Case in point: Kyle Rayner reciting it while recharging his ring, allowing him to beat the crap out of Sinestro in the episode "In Brightest Day."
  • Lobo's personal introduction as detailed on the Heroic Comedic Sociopath page... not to mention his first fight between him and Superman, (Superman proved to be superior in a fair fight but Lobo had a good performance being on par with Supes, despite relying on cheap shots) with their respective theme songs dueling in the back ground.
    • Three words: "Lights Out, Clyde!"... BAM. Lobo knocks Superman flat with one punch.
    • Special mention goes to Lois for stepping in to try to help Superman. It does absolutely no good, but the mere fact that she tried to take on Lobo single handedly is awesome.
    • Superman sending Lobo through Luthor's building. Two birds. One stone.
  • Dan Turpin is awesome.
    Darkseid: People of Earth, I am Darkseid, lord of Apokolips. Here is your savior, cowed and broken. I have crushed him as easily as I have crushed all who dared to oppose me throughout the cosmos. I am power unlike any you have ever known: absolute, infinite, and unrelenting. You have no choice but to prepare for a long dark future as my subjects and my slaves.
    [dead silence]
    Turpin: In a pig's eye!
    • Turpin then goes on to rally the other humans, tackle one of Darkseid's henchmen, and finally free Superman with a well-aimed throw of the aforementioned henchman's weapon. Taunting Darkseid all the while.
    • Superman then gets one right after. Kalibak tackles our freed hero as the crowd silently cheers on Superman. He decks a very satisfying right hook to Kalibak's face-sending him flying!
  • The climax of “Apokolips...Now! Pt II”: there's something sweetly awesome about seeing the denizens of New Genesis (Scott, Barda, Forager, the Black Racer, and Metron among them, and all headed by Orion) roll in at the eleventh hour on the Glory Boat.
    • And of course Darkseid just look up at them sourly. The King would be proud...
  • And of course, Darkseid then gets one of his own when interference from New Genesis forces him to retreat. He fires his omega beams directly at Superman's face only to stop short and make the beams zig-zag behind Superman and vaporize Turpin. One of the most Kick the Dog things ever but done so well that it might as well be his signature act.
  • "Legacy": Darkseid's beaten the crap out of Big Blue and is about to obliterate him with a final Omega Beam blast. Instead, Superman gets his Unstoppable Rage on, and slams his palms into Darkseid's eyes, turning Darkseid's Omega Beams back on him and blowing the back of his head off. Darkseid collapses. Cut to Superman standing triumphantly atop Darkseid's citadel, the limp dictator held over his head. Superman then throws Darkseid to his own Hunger Dogs to do with him as they will.
    • Darkseid gets one right after that, oddly enough. Before the fight, Darkseid announces that "I am many things, Kal-El. Half of them you can't even begin to comprehend." After being beaten and tossed to the people whose lives he's made into a literal living hell...they all help him up and start to carry him off to recover while Superman looks on horrified. Darkseid stops the crowd long enough to give this parting shot: "I am many things, Kal-El. But here, I am God."
    • Earlier in the episode, Superman, about to be euthanized by the military, quietly asks Lex for one final request. Lex leans in with a Smug Snake grin to hear what it is... then Supes just decks him a very satisfying one to the jaw.
      • And we see at the end of the episode that the punch (given while Superman was Brought Down to Normal, mind you) put Lex in a neck brace.
    • Lois tasering Lex and General Hardcastle in order to break Superman out of jail.
    • The lead up to the fight with Darkseid is also great for Supes, defeating Granny Goodness by grabbing her as he's being electroshocked, crashing the Female Furies through a fiery smokestack then a statue of Darkseid, before bursting into Darkseid's throneroom and knocking out Kalibak with three punches.
      Darkseid: I can't believe he's blood.
    • And of course, there was Darkseid's entire plan in the finale, an utterly brilliant Xanatos Gambit. If Superman succeeded in conquering Earth, Darkseid could claim it without breaking his treaty with New Genesis, as he technically didn't attack it. If Superman loses, a dangerous enemy is removed and Darkseid can focus his forces more on defeating New Genesis and continue his expansion. If something in the middle happened (which it did) and Superman's brainwashing is removed, he still attacked Earth under his own banner. The damage is still done and Superman's image and reputation on Earth is tarnished. Meanwhile, Darkseid is still worshiped by his people, no matter how horrible he is to them. No matter what the outcome, Darkseid wins!
    • Except he doesn't. As Justice League shows, Superman managed to win back Earth's trust, making Darkseid's actions ultimately for naught. At the end of the day, Superman comes out on top.
  • Superman proving his smarts in "Mxyzpixilated". Nothing like seven minutes of punking an all-powerful Jerkass to point out that Big Blue has brains to go with that brawn. The capper is when Mxy tries to attack him with a Humongous Mecha (for his scale anyway) that takes him months to build, and Supes sends him back in less than five seconds!
  • Pa Kent has one of his own when confronted by Kalibak. He shows that Clark got what makes him Superman at least as much from the Kents as he did from his Kryptonian parents.
    • In that same episode, Kalibak, charging at Superman as usual, gets completely decked when Supes grabs a car in each hand and smack them around him like he was swatting a fly.
  • Superman is fond of awesome Shut Up, Hannibal! moments. A mook threatens him with a ray gun, gloating, "Hey, alien, this laser can punch through four sheets of reinforced titanium. I have no doubt it can..." Supes simply Flash Steps up to him and crushes it.
    • From that same episode, Supes pulled a Batman interrogation on that same guy... as in, punches the wall, and dangles the man over a 40-story drop. Who says just Batman knows how to instill fear in criminals?
    • Brainiac zaps him with Kryptonite and beats on him while saying, "You are your father's son. Headstrong. Foolish. Easily defeated. In the end, forgotten." Superman punches a hole in his chest.
    • Edward Lytener puts on a suit of armor that projects red sunlight and decks Supes, explaining that red sunlight weakens him. Supes hits him with a pipe, then proceeds to beat the crap out of him!
      • Lytener forgot that all red sunlight does is take away his superpowers, and even without them Clark is still a big, beefy dude.
  • "The Late Mr. Kent" - After investigating a condemned prisoner's claim of innocence for one night, Clark Kent proves he had an ironclad alibi. He can't get the evidence to the Governor in time to stop the innocent man's execution, so he flies to the prison himself and personally stops the execution at the literal last second. Then he finds the real killer, who is sent to the gas chamber.
  • Superman in "Knight Time". Dressed up as the Batman... seriously, watch how he idly owns Bane in the Curb-Stomp Battle. It's both awesome AND hilarious!
    • Also his pwnage of Brainiac in that episode.
    • Or when his disguise as Batman was blown away, revealing the Man of Steel underneath.
      Brainiac: Kal-El. This development was highly improbable.
      Superman: Yeah, well today's been full of surprises...*decks Brainiac with one punch*
    • Really the whole episode just goes to prove that everybody wants to be Batman once in a while, even the Man of Steel himself.
  • Another crossover Batman episode. Ra's Al-Ghul is basically got all of Superman's strength, and is prepared to kill Superman and Batman. Supes manages to distract Ra's from their attention by pointing out Talia is falling to her death (either punish me or save your daughter). And in spite of his continuing weakness, he escapes with an unconscious Batman, from the self destructing hideout.
  • Superman and the Flash having a race. The fastest man alive and faster than a speeding bullet going all out was awesome!
  • During “A Fish Story”, Aquaman is shown to be reasonably competent and tough but nothing exceptional for most of the episode. It was still enough to subvert the whole "Aquaman is useless" thing. Then, near the end of the episode its revealed he is the king of his people as a masssive Atlantean battleship emerges from the water which towers over Lex Luthor's freighter. Superman has to convince Aquaman to not obliterate Luthor... And then one of Luthor's men fires a harpoon at Aquaman when his back is turned. Aquaman whips around and catches it with ease and his navy absolutely decimates the freighter. Once the freighter is sunk and Luthor has fled, Aquaman warns Superman that if anyone fucks with his kingdom again he'll wipe out the rest of mankind's civilization. Considering his previous treatment in animation, Aquaman's appearance on Superman: TAS was not only a crowning moment for the character, it was a crowning moment for the creators as well.
    • Aquaman spent this episode as an Ambadassador, as he tried to convince Luthor to call off his underwater drilling operation and was captured as a result. When Lois finds him, Aquaman admits he could have left anytime he wanted to but wanted to make a non-violent point first. Then he learns Luthor has decided to accelerate his operation just to spite Aquaman. Bad idea, Lex.
  • Lana instantly deducing Superman's identity, and surprising him by asking if Martha made his costume.
  • All of "Brave New Metropolis," an extremely dark Elseworld story about just how badly Lois' death would affect Superman. And it climaxes with Lex Luthor being exposed, confronted by all the people he's screwed over, and then actually killed, the censors allowing it because it wasn't the "real" Luthor.
  • Supergirl defeats all three Furies and Granny Goodness by cleverly turning their abilities against each other in her introductory episode.
  • "Double Dose" sees Superman up against Livewire and Parasite. Naturally, Parasite double-crosses Livewire, absorbs her electric powers and pursues a weakened Superman to absorb his powers next. Faced with a dead end of a janitor's closet, Superman grabs a mop and tries to fend Parasite off with it. Parasite just laughs and zaps it, lighting one end on fire. Smiling, Superman lifts the mop to the ceiling sprinkler. Cue the Oh, Crap! (and Big "NO!") from Parasite. Superman jumps into the safety of the janitor's closet just before Parasite gets fried.
  • Luthor gets one in “The Way of All Flesh”. Corben is one step away from ripping him to pieces for not mentioning how the new body won't have any sensation of taste, touch or smell. How does Luthor handle it? Luthor casually points out that he's Corben's only chance to ever regain those senses.
    Luthor: So go ahead, kill me if you want to! But what then?
  • Sul-Van (Superman's grandfather) serving as a decoy and leading the police away so Jor-El and Lara can launch baby Kal-El into space.
  • Jimmy Olsen helping Superman take out Metallo ("Superman's Pal"). Even getting into a fight with an android who gives a superhero trouble is an extremely gutsy move for a non-powered untrained teenager, but Jimmy doesn't stop at distracting the bad guy. He throws a wrench in his scheme by grabbing Metallo with a car magnet and then finding a way to disable his power source (and only advantage over the Man of Steel). When the neighborhood superhero credits you with saving his life, that's got to count as a Moment of Awesome.
  • In the episode “Heavy Metal”, Metallo has Superman on the ropes, when Steel intercedes and introduces himself.
    Metallo: Steel? Metallo. (bows) The meeting of the metals! Well then, Mr. Steel, may the best alloy win.
  • "The Hand of Fate":
    • When shoggoths begin streaming up from the pit, Jimmy grabs something and throws it at one. It didn't do a thing, but the guy stayed calm and refused to go down without a fight.
    • Superman going back to fight an Eldritch Abomination that can easily kill him, and in the process convincing Dr. Fate to rejoin "the never-ending battle".
  • In part two of "The Main Man", Superman Briar Patches some alien mooks, warning them that they really don't want to throw him into one of the Collector's cages with an unseen creature. He's right: the habitat is for a dodo, from Earth, and includes a yellow sun lamp which quickly recharges him.
  • In Blasts from the Past, Lois gets to be pretty badass even though she can't really do anything herself against two Kryptonian criminals. She's Defiant To The Last even when in grave danger, is trusted by Superman to keep Mala in check with a Kryptonite chunk while he goes after Jax-Ur, tells them she'll personally lead the army that vaporizes them (this after Superman has been sent to the Phantom Zone, so we're talking the Darkest Hour when it looks hopeless not just for her but for the world!) and in the end, the final plan to defeat the duo is Superman leading them to where Lois is waiting with the repaired Phantom Zone projector. Yes, she is the one to take down the strongest foe Big Blue has faced to this point in the series! Your average helpless Distressed Damsel she is NOT!

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