Skip to comments.The 100 Most Memorable TV Moments
Posted on 12/12/2004 7:06:49 PM PST by ConservativeStatement
TV Guide and TV Land have teamed up to present the 100 Most Memorable TV Moments.
(Excerpt) Read more at tvguide.com ...
It's prominently featured on my Twilight Zone pinball machine, too. Great episode!
Q. What's your wife's favorite flower?
A. Wife's answer: Red Roses
A. Husband's answer: Pillsbury.
All three of the actresses made many movies.
Did Arthur Godfrey firing Julius LaRosa on the air make the list?
Here is the complete list:
100. MIAMI VICE DEBUTS (9/16/84)
Add MTV to the Miami P.D. and you get something electrifying on the air at night.
99. BRENDA AND DYLAN DO IT (5/2/91)
I was a 90210 junkie. Granted, I was a member of the Fox serial's target audience: In 1993, when the West Beverly High gang was fictitiously graduating from high school, I was donning the cap and gown in real life. Partially because of this and partially because I was mesmerized by Luke Perry's rasp of a voice I stuck with the Aaron Spelling-produced soap through good times and bad. The Season 1-ending episode in which good-girl Brenda decided to lose her virginity to boyfriend Dylan after the Spring Dance represented 90210 at its best: momentarily heartfelt, even relatable, but ultimately soapy to the core. Brenda's decision led to a pregnancy scare, which prompted her to break up with Dylan. Naturally, they got back together at least until he cheated with her best friend Kelly, leading a scorned Brenda to scream, "I hate you!" at the pair. The O.C. crew can only hope to be as deliciously over-the-top. Shawna Malcom
98. MARCIA BRADY'S BROKEN NOSE (2/9/73)
One errant football breaks Marcia's nose and bruises her ego.
97. PUCK GETS THE BOOT (8/25/94)
The Real Worlders revolt against Puck's burping, yelling and smelling.
96. "SAM, YOU'RE FIRED!" (1/21/04)
On The Apprentice, the Donald needs just three words to speak volumes about business.
95. CLARABELL SPEAKS (9/24/60)
Say, kids, what time is it? It's time for Howdy Doody to say goodbye and leave everyone saddened.
94. PETER PAN FLIES (3/7/55)
Forget the wires Mary Martin is pure wonder, no strings attached.
93. SINÉAD RIPS THE POPE (10/3/92)
The singer tears into the pontiff's picture on Saturday Night Live and lights a Roman candle of controversy.
92. LAETTNER'S BUZZER BEATER (3/28/92)
With everything on the line for Duke basketball, Christian Laettner's one shot at immortality hits nothing but net.
91. KRAMDEN'S $99,000 ANSWER (1/28/56)
Will TV history's favorite lovable loser strike it rich this time? Out of the question!
90. "THAT'S MY BOY??" (9/25/63)
Laughter is color-blind on The Dick Van Dyke Show when Greg Morris arrives to prove Rob brought home the right baby.
89. RATHER GETS ROUGHED UP (8/27/68)
Dan Rather is punched in the stomach but democracy gets a black eye at the Democratic convention.
88. "THE SAVING HEART" (11/16/83)
St. Elsewhere proves it's all heart with this poignant transplant episode.
87. HUGH GRANT APOLOGIZES (7/10/95)
Tonight's Jay Leno learns that to err is human but great ratings are Divine.
86. JOHN DEAN TESTIFIES (6/25/73)
The ultimate insider blows the whistle on the White House during Watergate.
85. GARY'S DEATH (2/12/91)
The death of thirtysomething's free spirit shows that nothing lasts forever.
84. THE DAY AFTER (11/20/83)
The movie's nuclear reaction remains the most haunting drama the medium has produced.
83. ANDY KAUFMAN'S SMACKDOWN (7/28/82)
Is it fake? Who cares! When Kaufman challenges wrestler Jerry Lawler on Letterman, it is shocking.
82. FLORIDA'S HUSBAND DIES (9/29/76)
Evans family life on Good Times turns from dy-no-mite to emotionally explosive.
81. ROSALIND GETS THE SHAFT (3/21/91)
The ultimate L.A. Law shocker: Rosalind Shays falls down an elevator shaft and America is floored.
80. IDOL FINAL: CLAY VS. RUBEN (5/21/03)
Two candidates with passionate supporters and the results are celebrated by all? That's the American way.
79. KERRI STRUG'S GOLDEN VAULT (7/23/96)
When it's all over, the '96 Olympic hero has to be carried, but the rest of us are doing cartwheels.
78. NIXON ASKS, "SOCK IT TO ME?" (9/16/68)
Does Tricky Dick's comic cameo help him win the election? You bet your sweet bippy!
77. SCHWEDDY BALLS (12/12/98)
SNL's deadpan NPR satire served up a nutty holiday treat that pushed the boundaries of taste.
76. ALEXIS AND KRYSTLE: WET AND WILD (4/13/83)
Dry cleaning for soaked fine washables: $500. Watching two rich, catty ladies deliver soggy haymakers on Dynasty: priceless.
75. NYPD NUDE (9/21/93)
The "blue" rear view of David Caruso and Amy Brenneman in the premiere brings in viewers, but NYPD's grit gives it enough street cred to hold them.
74. AL CAPONE'S EMPTY VAULT (4/21/86)
The mob boss teaches headline chaser Geraldo Rivera a "valuable" lesson: Apparently, you can take it with you.
73. THE FIRST MILLIONAIRE (11/19/99)
John Carpenter phones home, becomes a millionaire and helps Regis Philbin revitalize a stale genre what a winning combination!
72. HILL AND RENKO GUNNED DOWN (1/15/81)
A shocking denouement illustrates that Hill Street Blues' pioneering blend of humor and pathos would be high caliber.
71. AN AMERICAN FAMILY: THE LOUDS (3/8/73)
The first family of reality TV learns the hard lesson of transferring their lives from real to reel when Mrs. Loud asks for a divorce.
70. THE COSBY SHOW DEBUTS (9/20/84)
Theo and viewers quickly learn that great TV parenting is a question of Cos and effect.
69. BELUSHI'S SAMURAI DELI (1/17/76)
TV's great sword-and-sandwich sketch, courtesy of John Belushi, our favorite wry ham.
68. TIM RUSSERT TALLIES THE VOTE (11/7/00)
On a confusing night, NBC's Russert turns his low-tech election whiteboard into a board of education.
67. LETTERMAN'S VELCRO SUIT (2/28/84)
David Letterman shows why his true-believing fans cling to him.
66. ROSS AND RACHEL'S FIRST KISS (11/9/95)
I can't separate Ross and Rachel's first real kiss on Friends from the potent studio-audience reaction I heard on my TV that night. Even with shows filmed in front of a live audience, the requisite whoops and cheers are often, as they say in the biz, "sweetened" that is, sound effects are amplified or added in the editing process. But all of us had waited for this moment through the entire first season, from the fans lucky enough to be watching it live to the millions like me at home. We weren't disappointed, seeing two people whose chemistry defined what we loved about this show, finally giving in to destiny. I pointedly recall not whooping, but listening to the audience do so felt right after Ross and Rachel, held apart at first by the locked door at Central Perk, had that stirring kiss and took their place among sitcom TV's most beloved couples. Theirs was the ideal Must-See romance to counterbalance Seinfeldian cynicism and the whoops were, most assuredly, live, and real, and heartfelt. Robert Edelstein
65. KIRK KISSES UHURA (11/22/68)
Going where no series has gone before, Star Trek sends a powerful racial message in the turbulent '60s.
64. RUMBLE IN THE JUNGLE: ALI VS. FOREMAN (10/30/74)
Everybody says, "Nope," Ali has no hope, so he hangs on the rope, 'cause he is no dope.
63. ELVIS' '68 COMEBACK SPECIAL (12/3/68)
Now this is Elvis: clad in black leather, cranking up the charm, creating revels without a pause. That's all right.
62. AMERICA HELD HOSTAGE (11/29/79)
In the midst of the Iranian hostage crisis, Ted Koppel first hosts the show that will become Nightline, and helps make sense of some of our longest hours.
61. JORDAN'S LAST CHAMPIONSHIP SHOT (6/14/98)
Michael Jordan's title-shot toss proves that Air has no heir.
60. DEATH OF CHUCKLES THE CLOWN (10/25/75)
We cry with laughter watching Mary Tyler Moore laugh and cry at Chuckles' nutty demise.
59. LUCY GOES TO THE HOSPITAL (1/19/53)
Lucy shows that when it comes to breaking comic ground and making brilliant slapstick, it's all in the delivery.
58. OLIVER NORTH IS SWORN IN (7/7/87)
To a nation bogged down by Iran-Contra, he becomes a steadying presence with his calm, cool and collected testimony.
57. BILL BUCKNER'S ERROR (10/25/86)
One misstep for the Sox, one giant leap for the Mets. And for Boston fans: Curses! Foiled again.
56. A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS (12/9/65)
A kids' cartoon proves that when it comes to finding the meaning of Christmas, a child shall lead them.
55. GOLD MEDALS: BLACK POWER (10/16/68)
Two U.S. Olympic stars take a stand and make a bold statement on postrace relations.
54. THE BATTLE OF THE SEXES (9/20/73)
Thanks to a regal performance, Billie Jean King shows Bobby Riggs for what he is a court jester.
53. SUSAN HAWK: SNAKES AND RATS (8/23/00)
Sue feeds victory to Richard Hatch in the first Survivor but not before pointing out that both he and Kelly are lower than vermin.
52. SULLIVAN CENSORS ELVIS (1/6/57)
Ed's attitude is "Waist not, want not," but not seeing the King of Rock's hips is what really gets kids all shook up.
51. THE OSCAR STREAKER (4/2/74)
It takes David Niven's classic quip to make a naked man showing his "shortcomings" blush.
50. BRODY KISSES BERRY (3/23/03)
Forget his Pianist performance Adrien Brody's Oscar-night liplock with Halle Berry is a winner.
49. BRANDI'S WORLD CUP STRIP (7/10/99)
It was so unreal, so out of the realm of traditional human behavior, it could have been an episode of The Twilight Zone. More than 40 million Americans were glued to their sets on a July afternoon watching a soccer game? A women's soccer game? For three weeks in the summer of 1999 we were all on a first-name basis with Women's World Cup warriors Mia, Briana, Tiffeny and, of course, Brandi. In front of 90,000 fans at the Rose Bowl, Ms. Chastain scored the penalty kick that clinched the championship for the United States. She immediately tore off her jersey in an exuberant and spontaneous celebration. Some denounced this as a marketing ploy to sell sports bras but as any true soccer fan knows, shirts have been flying in celebration at mens games for years. So it was truly appropriate that after decades of struggle, sometimes just for the right to play, female athletes were finally getting the chance to be appreciated and judged in the same way as their male counterparts. The phrase "to play like a girl" was no longer an insult. Forevermore, it could be considered a challenge. Rich Sands
48. SAM AND DIANE'S FIRST KISS (3/31/83)
The truth? By now, we Cheers fans are just as turned on as they are.
47. CAROL BURNETT'S "WENT WITH THE WIND" (11/13/76)
For her Scarlett parody, Burnett's window dressing is the ultimate curtain call.
46. MARK McGWIRE HITS No. 62 (9/8/98)
A called strike drives baseball fans away until the home run chase gives us back our game.
45. PICARD GOES BORG (6/18/90)
Riker tells Worf, "Fire!" and fans learn that resisting Star Trek: The Next Generation is futile.
44. KENNEDY-NIXON DEBATE (9/26/60)
Nixon looks good on paper, but JFK looks positively presidential on screen.
43. ELLEN COMES OUT (4/30/97)
Ellen DeGeneres gets the laughs and takes the heat for playing her most affecting role herself.
42. THE FALL OF SAIGON (4/29/75)
The scramble for the copters sums up the chaos of Vietnam, our first TV war.
41. BETTE'S FAREWELL TO JOHNNY (5/21/92)
How does TV bid goodbye to Johnny Carson? With "One More for the Road" a best Bette.
40. THE DEATH OF HENRY BLAKE (3/18/75)
Here is proof that nobody is safe, even in M*A*S*H's comic theater of war.
39. HAVE YOU NO SHAME? (6/9/54)
At the Army-McCarthy hearings, the lawyer's question for the senator finally shows who the real enemy is.
38. THE WARDROBE MALFUNCTION (2/1/04)
Probably just like you, I saw Janet Jackson's bejeweled boob for about a millisecond at the finale of her XXX performance at Super Bowl XXXIX. Looking back, it occurs to me that my wife and I instantly uttered a phrase that was repeated in homes throughout the republic: "Did you see what I think I just saw?" And then, for the rest of the day, we could talk of nothing else but Wacko Jacko's sister and her chest. As mammary glands go, it seemed to us quite ample. Of course, as publicity stunts go, this one turned out to be a flaming zeppelin over Lakehurst, New Jersey, one split second of spark followed by a long and gaseous eruption. As a journalist, Super Bowl-kitsch connoisseur and former breast-fed baby, I wouldn't have missed it for the world. Michael Davis
37. CLINTON PLAYS THE SAX (6/3/92)
Celebrating the joy of sax on The Arsenio Hall Show makes the would-be president look cool under pressure.
36. TONY'S COLLEGE KILLING (2/7/99)
Tony Soprano takes Meadow to visit colleges and teaches a snitch a lesson we'll never forget.
35. LUKE AND LAURA'S WEDDING (11/17/81)
It's the picture-perfect soap-opera wedding until Laura's ex-husband shows up and catches the bouquet.
34. HANK AARON BREAKS RUTH'S RECORD (4/8/74)
The baseball great triumphs over bigotry and threats in a feat and victory lap that levels the game's playing field forever.
33. NADIA'S PERFECT 10 (7/18/76)
A tiny Romanian gymnast's unparalleled performance at the Olympics turns her into the whole world's golden girl.
32. SAVING BABY JESSICA (10/16/87)
The country holds its breath until a little girl is rescued from a parent's worst nightmare.
31. 60 MINUTES WITH AYATOLLAH KHOMEINI (11/18/79)
Mike Wallace helps America put a face to the powerful leader behind the Iranian hostage crisis.
30. EDDIE MURPHY DOES JAMES BROWN (11/5/83)
The Saturday Night Live star turns the Godfather of Soul into the Hottest Tubbing Man in Show Business.
29. NIXON WAVES FAREWELL (8/9/74)
With one last ironically triumphant salute, a disgraced president bids farewell to his job.
28. OLYMPIC TRAGEDY IN MUNICH (9/5/72)
Eleven Israeli athletes are killed following a terrorist attack, rendering the Games' good will meaningless.
27. MICHAEL JACKSON'S MOONWALK (5/16/83)
One memorable move on Motown 25 turns a young sensation into the King of Pop.
26. EDITH TALKS BACK (1/8/72)
Everybody loves Edith Bunker. But when she refuses to stifle herself, she gains everyone's respect.
25. BOOKWORM IN THE TWILIGHT ZONE (11/20/59)
A man who wants only to be left alone to read gets his wish in a world that's sadly out of focus.
24. NEWHART'S FINAL SURPRISE (5/21/90)
Someone suggested a great way to end this hit series, and everyone agrees it's a dream.
23. PRINCESS DIANA'S FUNERAL (9/6/97)
She was gentle, vulnerable, vibrant you didn't have to know England's rose to grieve her passing.
22. THE FUGITIVE FINALE (8/29/67)
Richard Kimble finally gets his hands on his one-armed adversary, and 70 percent of the country tunes in to see the final shot.
21. THE MIRACLE ON ICE (2/22/80)
Do you believe in miracles? Against all odds, the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team rises to become cold warriors.
20. SEINFELD'S MASTER OF YOUR DOMAIN (11/18/92)
It was gripping comedy at its finest. But who actually won the contest that turned Seinfeld into a bona fide comedy institution? The show's fans did hands down.
19. CLINTON DENIES AFFAIR (1/26/98)
Clinton's 11-word proclamation led to the ultimate presidential backroom drama and allowed the GOP to dream the impeachable dream.
18. SAMMY KISSES ARCHIE (2/19/72)
Sammy Davis Jr. kissing Archie Bunker's cheek the moment a photo of them is taken proved to be the ultimate race laugh-riot and was Sammy's way of telling Archie, "I gotta be me."
17. THE DEATH OF DALE EARNHARDT (2/18/01)
The terrible moment of impact on that black Sunday forever shifted the way drivers and fans view life behind the wheel, and robbed the sport of its defining hero.
16. THE ROYAL WEDDING (7/29/81)
The bride's train went on longer than the marriage, but at that very moment in time, the warmth and pageantry of the day was princely.
15. THE BOMBING OF BAGHDAD (1/16/91)
CNN scoops the world by sending home vivid views of the bombs bursting in air.
14: RUBY KILLS OSWALD (11/24/63)
"Lee Oswald has been shot!" The news fix that hooked a nation unfolded live from the basement of Dallas City Jail and fueled a lingering cloud of conspiracy theories.
13. TIANANMEN SQUARE: MAN VS. TANK (6/5/89)
One man stands in the path of oppression and, for a moment, hatred is stuck in neutral.
12. THE O.J. SIMPSON CHASE (6/17/94)
It was just a white Bronco in a low-speed highway chase but the inside story had us all riveted.
11. THE O.J. VERDICT (10/3/95)
Nobody realized how polarizing this event was until the foreman read the verdict and half the country cheered while the other half sat in stunned silence.
10. WHO SHOT J.R.? (3/21/80)
A shot rang out in the dark and made for one of the longest summers in television. The rest is ratings history, darlin'.
9. I LOVE LUCY: "JOB SWITCHING" LANDS LUCY IN CANDY FACTORY (9/15/52)
Lucy was like a conveyer belt filled with chocolates: sweet, irresistible, delicious and very fast.
8. The M*A*S*H FINAL EPISODE (2/28/83)
The series lasted longer than the Korean War and as much as we wished it to go on forever, this fine episode proved that in a show about war, there's no place like home.
7. ALEX HALEY'S ROOTS (1/24/77)
Each horrific lash of the whip on Kunta Kinte's back in Roots made him hang onto his past that much harder. But he changed his name to protect his innocence.
6. JFK's STATE FUNERAL: JOHN-JOHN'S SALUTE (11/25/63)
To amuse family and annoy friends, I used to do a mean John Fitzgerald Kennedy imitation. OK, so it was a sixth-grade knockoff of a knockoff, lifted straight from the vinyl grooves of The First Family, comic Vaughan Meader's send-up of JFK and Jackie. Was there a single person in my hometown who didn't spin that LP on the hi-fi? Just old Mrs. Ball, who smelled like camphor, had no sense of humor and was half-deaf anyway. Looking back at the flannel-gray November days following Kennedy's assassination, what I recall most clearly is that no one wanted that damn record around anymore. Especially after the day we watched the funeral cortege pass through the streets of Washington on TV, with the dampened brrrump, bruump, bruump drum cadence that repeats in my ears to this day. And whenever I see that now-historic photograph of the little boy who would become John F. Kennedy Jr. saluting the flag-draped coffin, I am transported back to a day in 1963 when all three available TV stations in my hometown carried the same grim images. Michael Davis
5. THE BEATLES ON ED SULLIVAN (2/9/64)
You could hardly hear the music over the screams, but two months after the death of a president, the innocent message of "I Want to Hold Your Hand" was not lost on anyone.
4. "I HAVE A DREAM...": MARTIN LUTHER KING SPEECH AT LINCOLN MEMORIAL (8/28/63)
At Dr. King's sermon on the mount, he preached a message of tolerance the truth of which is still marching on.
3. THE CHALLENGER EXPLODES (1/28/86)
The images are as sad and frightening today as they were then, perhaps because with teacher Christa McAuliffe aboard, Challenger brought home the point that in the name of exploration, we lost one of our own.
2. MOON LANDING (7/20/69)
A dream as big as the stars comes true in fuzzy black-and-white on TV sets everywhere, as two men take us on a trip to a whole new world.
1. SOUTH TOWER COLLAPSES (9/11/01)
The moment of our generation, when a pall hung over the nation as thick as the dust clouds over lower Manhattan, and we came to learn the true meaning of resolve.
I think you're right. My bad.
Elvis Costello on SNL - starting "Less Than Zero", waving it off, then ripping into a snarling version of "Radio, Radio".
Just thought of one more - Andy Kaufman on "Fridays" - the big melee at the end of the show.
"How 'bout April 4th, 1968 ?"
After the film's  premiere in April of 1968, Kubrick cut 19 minutes from the film, including parts of the Dawn of Man prologue, the Orion spaceship, Pool exercising in the centrifuge, and Pool returning with the AE-35 unit. Kubrick also inserted the title cards "Jupiter Mission 18 Months Later" and "Jupiter and Beyond the Infinite."
"SPCA on line two, boss"
In a similar SNL vein, John Sebastian so messed up he had to restart the theme to "Welcome Back Kotter". It was in the first or second season.
I know which episode!!!
That's the one I was thinking of -- I had a bet on that particular game at 350 to 1.
Thank you SO MUCH for the full posting! :-)
Yeah, me too. He even looked like John Steed.
There was, too, the final episode of The Prisoner, that product of Patrick McGoohan's breakdown and one of the weirdest TV shows I've ever seen. They about lynched him in England when it first aired.
That magic moment, when, hormones raging, Greg and Marcia realize that they aren't in fact related....
The scary thing is, that same thing happened between Gilligan and the Skipper....ewww!