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Awesome / The Phantom of the Opera

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The musical

  • The Overture is one - the SET rises from its collapsed form on the stage (as well as "something about a chandelier" doing the same).
    • 'Perhaps we can frighten away the ghost of so many years ago with a little ILLUMINATION! GENTLEMEN!'
  • That high note Christine hits at the end of the title song.
    • Her cadenza at the end of "Think of Me" is also quite spectacular.
  • The Phantom appearing in Christine’s mirror after her performance. “Look at your face in the mirror… ‘’I am there inside!’’
  • During the production of "Il Muto", where the Phantom ruins Carlotta's performance by making her croak like a frog onstage, and then drives her offstage with his creepy laugh.
  • Carlotta herself gets one at the end of "Prima Donna" in the 25th anniversary. After being singled out as a target for the Phantom's ire, with the threat of "a disaster beyond your imagination!!!" still ringing in everyone's ears, she gives this incredible expression before leading the entire assembly in one last, defiant, "ONCE MORE!!!"
    • Hell, during "Poor Fool, He Makes Me Laugh," even when the Phantom interrupts to threaten everyone (her in particular), and sabotages her performance, she keeps right on going. Despite being visibly terrified, she's determined to give her performance, Opera Ghost be damned. Say what you want about Carlotta, but that takes serious guts.
  • Um... Something about a chandelier at the end of Act I.
  • The Phantom crashes the masquerade ball at the beginning of Act II (in a spectacularly cool Red Death costume) just minutes after the other characters were expressing relief at being done with him for good. "Have you missed me, good Messieurs?" indeed.
    • Made even more so by the fact that two of the other characters say earlier "What a pity that the Phantom can't be here."
    • "Why so silent, good Messieurs? Did you think that I had left you for good?"
    • The musical transition contributes greatly to the scene. One moment, the guests of the ball are happily singing the climax of "Masquerade", the next, the opening notes of the Phantom's theme thunder through the hall, silencing everybody.
  • Raoul really Needs More Love—especially for the graveyard scene, where he faces down an angry out-for-blood Phantom and calls him out on the whole "trying to force someone to love you via threats and kidnapping" thing. Oh yeah, did we mention the Phantom is hurling fireballs at him through all this? Who says the Vicomte de Chagny isn't badass? Not to mention swimming across the underground lake in order to rescue Christine, as well as begging her not to sacrifice herself for him. In other words, he was willing to die to ensure her safety.
    • Come to think of it, during the ENTIRE FREAKING MUSICAL, Raoul is the only character who never has any of the Phantom's shit. Even when he's threatened to be killed by him.
      • Subverted in the novel, where he's basically a spoiled young noble who distrusts Christine at the height of her dilemma, faints as soon as he sees Erik in the graveyard, and hopeless flops his rescue mission even with the Persian to help him.
      • Eh, YMMV on that one since Raoul is put through even more in the novel than he is in the musical - he's explicitly threatened with disinheritance if he keeps seeing Christine (which was a big deal back then...and he still keeps seeing Christine), his older brother is murdered by Erik, he is tortured and almost killed twice when he goes to save Christine… And he never gives up. And he's one of the (very few) characters to stay rational and sensible about what the Phantom is. For an admittedly sheltered 21 year old, he actually does pretty well.
  • After the Phantom presents Christine with his Scarpia Ultimatum — "His life is now the prize that you must earn. So, do you end your days with me, or do you send him to his grave?" — Raoul throws this back in the Phantom's face with "Why make her lie to you to save me?"
    • Even more badass when you consider that Raoul is almost certainly provoking the Phantom in hopes that Erik will kill him and, by the terms of the bargain, free Christine.
    • Christine doesn't just sit by and weep either; she snarls back at the Phantom "The tears I might have shed for your dark fate/Grow cold, and turn to tears of hate!" showing him clearly that she's not going to be a pushover for him any longer.
  • After spending the balance of the show as the Damsel in Distress, Christine turns the Phantom at his Stalker with a Crush worst to a shivering wreck and prompts him to turn his Scarpia Ultimatum into a heartbreaking self-sacrifice... with a single kiss. The Power of Love (or at least compassion) at its most potent.
  • The Phantom's final disappearing act.
  • Christine's performance in "Don Juan". She starts out playing a naive girl with "no thoughts inside her head but thoughts of love". The narrative tells us that she is merely an object to be seduced by the protagonist (which is arguably how Christine herself is treated throughout the film). But then when we come to Past the Point of No Return, Christine flips the narrative. Instead of being seduced, she's the one doing the seducing, which, judging by both the Phantom and Raoul's reactions, no one expected her to be capable of. Whether she's taking charge of her sexual desire for the Phantom or manipulating him into the line of fire is unclear and often depends on the adaptation, but either way it's awesome.
    • When the show returned to Broadway after the pandemic-forced shutdown, there was a significant change in the staging. Instead of running away in fear after realizing that it's the Phantom she's singing with, Christine continues to sing and even waves off the men wanting to rescue her. Although she's still frightened of him, she's clearly determined to face him on her own.
  • Madame Giry is made of awesome. She commands immediate respect from everyone she meets, she is a stern but fair teacher, a voice of reason (which is unfortunately often ignored), and one of the more level-headed people in general. She manages to make someone like Carlotta shut up with one sentence.
  • For the Broadway show's 30th anniversary, Andrew Lloyd Webber appeared with producer Cameron Mackintosh to kick things off with the cast of School of Rock (another of his productions) to play the theme in rock style, the way he'd always wanted it. And who should be singing but the original Christine herself, Sarah Brightman. It's capped off by them bringing out the entire "Class of 1986", as Mackintosh called them, to sing "Masquerade".
  • When Carlotta accuses Christine of being in league with the Phantom, Christine refuses to be victim-blamed, getting right up in her face and screaming, "How dare you! You evil woman — this isn't my fault!" Especially impressive since up until now, she's spent the entire song silently watching everyone else argue and freaking out about what Erik might do to her.

The Silent Film

  • The unmasking scene. Lon Chaney's self-applied makeup was so incredibly well done, that some audience members in 1925 were reported to have fainted upon seeing his face. Still scary today, in a Jump Scare sort of way.

The Miniseries

  • The Phantom and Christine's duet. Her showing off the beautiful voice she's garnered thanks to his lessons, him showing off HIS singing chops, aand them affirming their love for each other via the "Anges Pur, Anges Radieux" duet from Faust.

The fandom