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Wham Shots in live-action TV.


  • 24:
    • In the third season, the viewer sees someone helping out the Mexican drug cartel for the first few episodes. Then the operative leaves his office and steps into CTU, revealing that he is also The Mole (or so the viewers thought at the time).
    • Similarly played in Season 5, Episode 16, where Dragon Christopher Henderson is talking to his accomplice on the phone which in turn is revealed to be the President of the United States.
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    • Heartbreakingly done at the end of the first season where Jack runs into the room his wife has been tied up in only to discover the bullet wound in her chest as he attempts to rouse her.
    • Late in Day 8, Jack and Renee are racing against the clock to save President Hassan from terrorists who are broadcasting a live feed of their "trial" of Hassan before they execute him. They burst in just in time and kill the terrorists. Jack then spots one of the video feeds showing that the terrorists are still alive and unharmed, revealing that it's not a live broadcast but a recording and that Hassan has already been killed.
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.:
    • In the episode "Turn, Turn, Turn", the signal is finally decrypted and it's not good news: OUT OF THE SHADOWS, INTO THE LIGHT: HYDRA
    • In the same episode, Coulson's face changing right after Garrett says something only Coulson knew: "...the same machine she used on that bitch in the flower dress."
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    • Used in the episode "Shadows" when it turns out Simmons isn't really there and Fitz is talking to himself.
  • American Gods (2017): Two in the first episode.
    • The coin Mad Sweeney gave Shadow and he in turn leaves on Laura's grave shines with an eerie light before being swallowed into the earth.
    • Shadow staring on in the aftermath of a bloody massacre of the men who beat and hung him.
  • In the Arrow episode "Vigilante", Artemis is standing on a rooftop when Prometheus appears behind her...only for her to turn and smile, revealing that she's The Mole.
    • At the very end of the same episode, Oliver returns to the lair, only to discover "Laurel", waiting for him.
    Laurel: Hi, Ollie.
    (cut to black)
  • The shot of the scorched remains of Earth in Battlestar Galactica (2003).
  • Breaking Bad:
    • At the end of Season 4, a wham shot reveals that Walter White had Lilies of the Valley growing in his back yard, more or less proving that he was the one who poisoned Brock, albeit non-lethally, and that he's been playing Gus and Jesse for the entire stretch of the finale.
      Bryan Cranston: The final shot of the season, is more of a revelation really, of who this man has become, and the lengths that he'll go to, to get whatever he wants.
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    • Earlier in that episode, there is a wham shot preceded by a wham sound: Gus is about to kill Hector Salamanca, but Hector starts tapping his dinger, which isn't dinging properly. It is revealed that he let Walter strap his bomb on the bottom of Hector's wheelchair and Hector suicide-bombs Gus and his henchman Tyrus to get revenge on Gus for wiping out his family.
    • At the end of "Gliding Over All" Hank goes to Walt's bathroom and happens to pick up his copy of Leaves of Grass...and finds a dedication to "W.W." from "G.B." One flashback later, and Hank finally discovers Walt's secret.
    • Near the end of "Confessions" has the look on Jesse's face when he realizes that Huell lifted his weed off of him. We see him finally come to the conclusion that Walt had him do the same thing with the ricin and that Walt was the one who poisoned Brock.
    • The penultimate episode of the series, "Granite State" has Walt call the DEA to give himself up and settle down to have a last drink before being captured, only to see his former Grey Matter business partners talking on television about him. The police raid the bar he called from, the final shot being his still full glass left alone on the counter.
  • On Buffy the Vampire Slayer, this is how we see that her mother died.
    • In the season 10 comics, Andrew steals the Vampyr book and everyone thinks he'll resurrect Warren. But the end shot of the issue reveals he intends to resurrect Tara. Willow talks him out of it in the next issue.
    • Issue 11 has Buffy and Spike's Big Damn Kiss. Finally.
  • Community
  • Criminal Minds likes these, as there's often a dramatic change between what's going on in the unsub's head and what's really going on. For example, in "Reflections of Desire" he walks out of his house with his mother to adoring fans...only the "fans" are the FBI come to arrest him and his mother is long dead. (The episode is a Whole Plot Reference to Psycho).
  • The 1981 TV adaptation of The Day of the Triffids uses two understated but effective Wham Shots in quick succession in the first episode. The protagonist is lying in a hospital bed with his eyes covered in bandages that are due to be removed later that day, dictating a letter to a friend into a tape recorder. He remarks that he can't hear any traffic from the nearby main road so it must be somewhere in the small hours...and then the camera pans and zooms towards the window, showing broad daylight outside. A few moments later, he mentions in passing that a nurse comes in with a cup of tea and helps him to the bathroom at 7 AM on the dot... and the camera zooms in on the digital clock on the nightstand, which reads 7:53. And then a few exposition-via-flashback scenes later the clock chimes the hour, and suddenly the protagonist finds out what the audience already knew.
  • Doctor Who:
    • One that's shown up a few times is the revelation that the interior of some innocent-looking structure is actually a TARDIS — such as when Vicki and Steven find their way into the Monk's TARDIS in "The Time Meddler", or when the Doctor bursts into the upstairs flat in "The Lodger". For that matter, the first time that Barbara crosses the threshold of the Doctor's TARDIS in "An Unearthly Child". "The Time Meddler"'s example was, of course, a double-whammy, as it revealed that there actually are other TARDISes in existence.
    • One of the biggest wham shots in the entire series is in the final scene of the last episode of "The Tenth Planet" when the Doctor regenerates for the very first time. The episode itself is missing, but luckily, the regeneration footage itself survives.
    • "The Parting of the Ways":
      • The Dalek that Jack kills has two eyes, not one. The Dalek Emperor soon reveals that his new Daleks were created from Human Resources.
      • Rose, demoralized and upset because the TARDIS won't fly, is sitting on a bench at the edge of a sports field. As Mickey talks to her, she notices Arc Words "BAD WOLF" written on the ground. Then she notices the phrase twice more in graffiti on the other side of the field.
      • When the Doctor notices the back of his hand start to glow, meaning he has to regenerate.
    • "School Reunion": It's not a surprise for the viewers, but Sarah Jane gets quite the shock when, after hiding in a storage room off the school gym, she turns to find the TARDIS parked inside.
    • The viewer is given absolutely no clue why Madame de Pompadour is being targeted throughout the entirety of "The Girl in the Fireplace"… until the final shot, when the camera pulls out to reveal that the name of the derelict ship is the S.S. Madame de Pompadour.
    • "Army of Ghosts": The mysterious Void ship begins to open, and Rose and Mickey are expecting Cybermen... only for four Daleks to emerge instead.
    • "Human Nature": It's more of a sound effect than an actual camera shot, but the scene where Joan Redfern checks John Smith's heartbeat after his fall down the stairs really hammers home that whatever is going on with the Doctor is more than just a standard case of Laser-Guided Amnesia.
    • A rather stunningly well-delivered one occurs in "Utopia" when Martha notices Professor Yana's pocket watch.
    • Near the end of "Partners in Crime", Donna leaves a message with a bystander on her way to join the Doctor. Then the bystander turns to face the camera... and it's Rose.
    • From "Vincent and the Doctor" comes a particularly harrowing one: after meeting Vincent van Gogh and facing down the nightmarish monster haunting his final days, showing him the TARDIS, and revealing his future legacy, the Doctor and Amy excitedly return to a present-day art exhibit they saw at the start of the episode. They're horrified to see that not a single new piece of art has appeared. For all their efforts, Vincent still killed himself.
    • "Day of the Moon": After the Doctor fails to rescue a little girl, she wanders out into the streets. A nearby homeless man asks if she's all right, and she says she's dying, but it'll be okay. She then regenerates, just as the Doctor and Master had.
    • In "Asylum of the Daleks", when the Doctor discovers Oswin is a Dalek.
    • From "The Name of the Doctor":
      Introducing John Hurt as The Doctor.
    • This is how the Twelfth Doctor is revealed in the 50th anniversary special "The Day of the Doctor".
    • It was spoiled in the trailer and somewhat predictable in the episode, but the double-doors closing to show windows that look like Cybermen eyes was still a great wham shot in "Dark Water".
    • Although spoilered by the BBC promotional material, the closing shot of the globe-enclosed Citadel of Gallifrey in "Heaven Sent" still packs a wallop.
    • "The Ghost Monument": The Doctor and company, after getting teleported into deep space, wind up in the company of the two finalists of a deadly race, who are told by organizer Ilin that their final objective is the titular Ghost Monument, so named by the planet Desolation's original settlers because it appears, insubstantial, every thousand years. After the racers leave, the Doctor, on a hunch, demands Ilin show her what the Ghost Monument looks like. He pulls up a hologram, and it turns out to be exactly what the Doctor came for: the missing TARDIS.
  • On ER, when Neela goes to visit Ray in another hospital (he was hit by a truck several episodes prior). When she first sees him, his face is bruised and scratched, but he seems okay otherwise...until his room door is opened wider and his nurse picks him up, revealing that both of his legs have been amputated.
  • In The Flash (2014) the episode "King Shark", The Stinger shows Earth-2 as the "Man in the Mask", quivers while Zoom returns, carrying Jay's corpse, only for the reveal that Zoom is "Jay".
    • Later on in the episode "Killer Frost", the final shot of Julian opening a cabinet in the Forensics Lab...and pulling out the Alchemy costume.
    • Played straight and subverted at the same time in "The Once And Future Flash" where Killer Frost asks Savitar why she should trust him. He then reveals that his metallic exterior is just armor and takes it off...but the episode ends before we can see who he is. It wouldn't be so frustrating if it wasn't so close to the end of the season.
    • Throughout season 4 (And in the Supergirl (2015) part of the yearly crossover), a mysterious girl keeps showing up and has these on a few occasions. In episode 11, after she pays for Cisco and Ralph's coffee and has a brief conversation with them, she looks happily on as they leave...before writing in the same symbols Barry wrote in after he came out of the Speed Force in the first episode of the season. In episode 20, after delivering a gift to Joe and Cecile's baby shower, she makes sure no one, especially Iris, can see her before speeding away. And in the season finale, Barry runs towards a satellite that he must punch with enough force to destroy before it destroys the city. Just as he's about to do so, the scene suddenly rewinds, then plays again...with another speedster joining him.
  • Friends
    • Season 1: Ross exits his plane with a new girlfriend.
    • Season 2: Janice is the woman Chandler has been speaking on the phone with.
    • Season 4: Chandler and Monica are in bed together.
    • Season 5: Ross and Rachel exit a Vegas quickie marriage chapel.
    • Season 7: The camera pans to a pregnant Rachel.
  • On Fringe, the existence of the alternate universe is confirmed when the camera draws back from an office window where the last scene of Season 1 takes place and keeps drawing back to show that it's an office in the World Trade Center, which wasn't destroyed in that reality.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • The Wham moment in Episode 1 isn't Jaime's "The things I do for love," but the fact that he pushes Bran out the window right after saying it.
    • "The Kingsroad": Bran opens his eyes.
    • "A Golden Crown": The Dothraki seize Viserys and break his arm.
    • "You Win or You Die": The goldcloaks turn on Ned's men.
    • "Fire and Blood": The first dragon comes into view.
    • "Blackwater": Ser Mandon Moore slashes Tyrion's face.
    • "Walk of Punishment": Locke chops and Jaime screams.
    • In the season 3 episode "The Rains of Castamere", it's the shot of Catelyn pulling back Roose's sleeve to reveal chainmail that clues the audience into Roose being a traitor, and therefore the whole wedding is a trap. Then the knives come out. There's also the shot of the doors being shut and "The Rains of Castamere" starting to play. And then again, with the shot of Black Walder appearing to finish the job.
    • Season 4's "Oathkeeper" showed what do the Others did to Craster's sons. They got turned to White Walkers by The Night's King.
    • "The Laws of Gods and Men": Shae's arrival at the trial.
    • "The Mountain and the Viper": Ser Gregor trips Oberyn, turning what would be a certain victory for Oberyn into a defeat. Gregor kills Oberyn, resulting in Tyrion losing his trial by champion and being sentenced to death.
    • "Watchers on the Wall": Ygritte gets shot.
    • "The Children": Tyrion finds Shae in Tywin's bed.
    • "Mother's Mercy": Jon is summoned outside, supposedly because one of the wildlings has seen his uncle Benjen. Too late, he realizes he's walking into a trap when he sees a sign saying "TRAITOR"
    • "The Broken Man": Among the various peasants building a sept is Sandor Clegane- the last time we'd seen him, he was unable to move with injuries that were seemingly fatal.
    • The final episode of Season 6, "The Winds of Winter":
      • The episode gives us the cut from the baby's face in the Tower of Joy to the present, confirming that Jon Snow is really Ned Stark's nephew and his true parents are Lyanna Stark and Rhaegar Targaryen.
      • Three separate ones for the Green Trial. First, Lancel discovers the barrels of wildfire. Then, the camera reveals the nearly burnt-down candle acting as a timed fuse. Then, when Margaery tries to leave the Sept with Loras, the Sparrows stop them, sealing their fate with the rest.
  • In The Good Place:
    • in the Season One finale, Eleanor declares "This is the Bad Place!" to the Good Place architect Michael, who stares at her for a moment - then his face splits into a Slasher Smile and cue the Evil Laugh.
    • In the third season finale, as the main six prepare to welcome their first group of humans into their experimental Good Place, they see that the second arrival is Chidi's former girlfriend Simone.
  • Hannibal:
    • As if the season finale wasn't already a Wham Episode (short version: Will Graham is framed for Hannibal Lecter's murders), the final scene shows Will in what will become Hannibal Lecter's jail cell.
    • In the season 2 episode "Takiawase", Beverly Katz discovers Hannibal's hidden basement, and whatever he has stored down there. She turns on the lights to get a better look, revealing Hannibal standing mere feet behind her, and ensuring to the viewers that Beverly is guaranteed to not get out of this alive.
  • In Haven, it is prophesied that a man with a circular maze tattoo on his arm will kill Duke Crocker. The second season finale ends with Duke looking on in horror as Nathan Wuornos sports the tattoo and threatens him with a gun.
  • How I Met Your Mother
    • The titular mother appearing for the very first time in the season 8 finale "Something New".
    • In "Vesuvius", after The Mother said that "What mother is going to miss her daughter’s wedding?", Ted gave a sorrowful reaction to it, suggesting that she is dying.
  • How to Get Away with Murder uses this frequently to reveal characters' involvement in the season's core mystery.
    • 1x09: Combined with Wham Line to reveal that Annalise Keating was present when Wes went back for the murder weapon.
    • 2x09: When ADA Sinclair's car pulls up outside the mansion, Bonnie is driving. Then we see that Sinclair is in the trunk, already dead.
    • 3x09: The person under the sheet is finally revealed to be Wes Gibbins.
  • The first appearance of the Super Sentai army, preparing to fight off the Zangyack invasion, at the beginning of Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger. Not only is this the largest gathering of toku heroes for the time, it also shows just how dire the incoming crisis will be.
    • In episode 40, the Gokaigers were sent to the past in order to supposedly claim a Grand Power. The episode ends but they didn't get a new power; however, a quick cut shows the temple they protected while in the past is home to something: the magic jar containing Ninjaman.
  • The Last Train has a train of passengers flash-frozen in a tunnel after a crash. When they thaw out, they find much of the outside world in ruins. The woman responsible for the freezing tells them a huge asteroid had just been about to hit the planet when the crash happened. The group decides to go looking for survivors and that it shouldn't be bad after a few months. As they leave, the camera zooms in on a faded gravestone with the date of death marked 2012...and as the train crashed in 1999, that means they've been frozen for decades.
  • Lost:
    • At the end of the season 4 finale, Jack has opened the coffin of "Jeremy Bentham," though we can't see inside of it yet. Then the camera pans over so we can see who "Jeremy Bentham" really is...and it's Locke!
    • Another one earlier in the season: One of the people on the boat is Michael.
    • In the season 3 finale, there was Kate appearing at the end of Jack's flashbacks showing that it's actually a flashforward taking place after they get off the island.
    • At the end of the fourth episode, Locke in a wheelchair at the end of his last flashback. All previous flashbacks throughout it had him behind a desk or in bed.
  • The Man in the High Castle: At the end of episode 9, Juliana and Frank see one of the films, where they're shocked to see an alternate reality counterpart of Frank being executed by Joe Blake, who's shown as part of a Nazi death squad. The viewer was already made aware that he's a Nazi agent, but it's a shock to the characters.
  • Melrose Place:
    • At the end of the second-season episode "Psycho-Therapy", it seems Michael has accepted that he and Sydney belong together after all. The camera goes outside the beach house....revealing Kimberly standing outside, glaring in the window. She didn't die after all.
    • Another wham in the next episode, "The Bitch Is Back". After making passionate love with Michael, Kimberly goes into the bathroom and pulls off her wig, showing us her badly-chopped hair and a long, ugly scar along the side of her head.
  • Merlin:
    • A Wham Shot takes place when Arthur notices Guinevere and Lancelot exchanging a Held Gaze and Holding Hands.
    • The final episode ended with a shot of a an aged Merlin walking down a road as a truck whizzes past, revealing that he's immortal and is still waiting for Arthur in the 21st century.
  • NCIS:
    • Season 6 ends with a doozy. After Ziva leaves the team to rejoin Mossad, we see a terrorist named Saleem in the Horn of Africa, preparing to interrogate a prisoner — and it's Ziva.
    • And then there's the start of Season 7. We once again see Saleem preparing to interrogate his prisoner — and it's Tony.
  • Once Upon a Time: The urn full of magic that even Rumple felt was too dangerous to use tips over. Blue liquid pours out over the ritual sigil left on the floor, taking humanoid shape...and Queen Elsa shoots a blast of frost from her fingertips before walking out.
  • The last scene of the pilot episode of Perception reveals that Natalie is another of Daniel's hallucinations.
  • Person of Interest: The season 3 finale show SWAT raiding the library.
  • The climax of Power Rangers Lost Galaxy's "Power of Pink" has Pink Ranger Kendrix Morgan go into a dangerous series of forcefields to destroy an Artifact of Doom that would destroy the Rangers space colony. She succeeds but gets caught up in a massive explosion. Minutes later her fellow Rangers (and the audience) see her ghost.
  • In the Power Rangers Zeo episode "A Golden Homecoming" we finally see a clear shot of the person Tommy personally handpicked to be the second Gold Ranger, revealing that it's Jason, the original leader of the Rangers.
  • In Power Rangers Dino Charge Heckyl has two of them, one in each part of the series. First one appears at the end of 'One More Energem', setting him up as the next Big Bad after Sledge. Second one is in 'Wings of Danger' and shows his origin story.
  • Pretty Little Liars:
    • The season two finale reveals that the gum wrapper that A was using as a bookmark is the same brand that Mona was chewing earlier.
    • In the season three finale, it's revealed that the mysterious "Red Coat" is Alison.
  • The Sopranos:
    • The season six premiere has the dementia-ridden Uncle Junior thinking that his old rival, Pussy Malanga, is still alive. At the end of the episode, Uncle Junior, thinking that Tony is Malanga, is pointing a gun at Tony while shouting "Cazzata Malanga", meaning "Stupid move, Malanga!", and proceeds to shoot him.
  • Stargate Atlantis: After the successful destruction of the Asuran homeworld in "Be All My Sins Remember'd" by the Tau'ri-Wraith-Traveller alliance, the last shot of the episode reveals the apparently still alive Elizabeth Weir clad in villain gear and commanding a Replicator ship.
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation:
    • The famous shot in "The Best of Both Worlds Part 1" where the rescue crew aboard the Borg Ship finally locates the captive Picard. And then he turns to face them, revealing the Borg implants on his face...
    • Part 2 of this episode has the scene where the Enterprise reaches Wolf 359, where Starfleet made their stand against the cube. Riker orders the viewscreen turned on—and everyone sees the shattered hulls of what used to be the Starfleet armada, showing just how unstoppable the Borg are.
  • In the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "In Purgatory's Shadow," Worf and Garak are captured by the Dominion and taken to an internment camp where they're locked up with General Martok and several others. At one point, Martok learns that a friend of his is being released from solitary confinement...and that friend is revealed to be Doctor Bashir, revealing that the one aboard DS9 is a Changeling.
  • Star Trek: Voyager: In the "Unimatrix Zero" two-part episode, several Borg Drones have created a mental world where they can live as individuals free from the Collective's control. At one point one of the children is playing in the woods with his friend, and he crawls through some bushes...until he looks up and sees the Borg Queen standing in front of him.
  • In Supergirl2015's part of Elseworlds, things seem to be winding down. As Barry and Ollie go to share a drink, Ollie gets a call from Batwoman - it seems that the Big Bad of the event, Dr. John Deegan, has made a friend in Arkham Asylum. We then visit the Asylum where we hear a man talking to him. As we get to his cell, he tells him that "Worlds will live. Worlds will die. And the universe will never be the same." before turning around and revealing himself to be the Psycho Pirate. Cue "Coming Fall 2019: Crisis On Infinite Earths".
  • In the first part of a two-parter episode of Touched by an Angel, we see a woman, played by Delta Burke, who was a part of a family of traveling gospel singers and is being counseled by a therapist about the memory of a bus accident that killed several of her family members three years earlier. Throughout the episode, she keeps blocking out the point before the accident and is seen talking to her young son, who we see throughout the hour. At the end of the episode, however, we see that her son also died in the accident, she lost her memory in the accident and that given her lack of accepting the events and her delusions of him, she has been in a mental institution ever since.
  • On Twin Peaks, one of these shows us that Bob is possessing Leland Palmer. Actually, pretty any time we see Bob comes off as one of these, as he's so strange looking and was used so sparingly.
  • Veronica Mars:
    • After Abel Koontz dies, Veronica goes to the hospital to collect his things. While there, she decides to visit Meg who's been in a coma since the bus crash. She's confused when she sees that Meg is hooked up to two heart monitors. She moves one out of the way and sees that Meg is pregnant. Finally, after Veronica leaves, we see Meg open her eyes.
    • In the second season finale, Veronica discovers that two of the victims of the bus crash were players on Woody Goodman's little league team who he molested. Veronica decides to look into the other players on the team and goes to one of Woody's restaurants to look at a group picture. She finds one player she hasn't heard of, then notices the caption "Not Pictured: Cassidy Casablancas". Suddenly, she puts it all together.
  • The Walking Dead:
    • The last walker coming out of the barn in "Pretty Much Dead Already" turns out to be their lost Tagalong Kid Sophia.
      • Shane and Randall reanimating without getting bitten or scratched by other walkers in the same episode.
    • The reappearance of The Governor in "Interment" means that things will get chaotic again.
  • On The West Wing after the shooting the camera follows Toby around the scene, and all of a sudden comes across Josh, who has been shot and has a massive bloody chest wound.
    • In that same episode, Secret Service agent Ron Butterfield finding the President's gunshot wound.
  • The season 2 finale ofYoung Sheldon; CBS promised it would be an ending you wouldn't forget, and they were right. Sheldon has invited his whole class to hear the Nobel Prize winners on the radio, but no one, not even his Asian friend Tam or his mentor Professor Sturgis note  shows up. The adult Sheldon narrates how at the time, he felt like a neutrino (a type of particle that never bonds). Cut to a bespectacled young boy also listening to the radio:
    • One by one, young versions of the The Big Bang Theory gang are shown, as adult Sheldon narrates that, he didn't know it yet, but he'd one day meet people who accepted him.


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