09 June 2010

TV Meme: Day 9 - Best Scene Ever

Absolutely positively the toughest of topic of the day yet: best scene ever. Immediately I'm surfing through all the shows I've watched, and scenes from Angel, 24, Doctor Who, and Buffy rush through my brain. But to stupidly quote the tag-line of Highlander,"there can only be one!"

So I've decided on a scene that I've rewatched a bazillion times over since owning it on Blu-Ray because of its simplicity and its utter power passing through every nuanced glance from the actor and every heartbreaking line spoken. This may screw me over on Day 13, but I don't care. This scene is gorgeous, and I'd say it's truly one of the best scenes ever. I'd go so far as to say that even people who aren't really familiar with the show would find themselves with a few droplets of tears in their eyes.

"The End of Time, Part Two", the final Doctor Who episode for 10th Doctor actor David Tennant (Casanova), features this extraordinary moment between The Doctor and Wilf. I'm quite aware I'm spoiling this entire episode for folks who haven't gotten to this point and are in the midst of watching Doctor Who or at least considering it (come back and read it later! finish the episode!), but this must be said.

(SPOILERS) The Doctor has just fought off against The Master (John Simm, a truly marvelous actor as ever I'd seen one), stopped the Time Lords returning to the world, and saved every human on earth. Overjoyed, The Doctor believes he has just cheated death, that the prophecy foretold to him three episodes ago in "Planet of the Dead" will not come into fruition after all. "I'm alive! I'm alive!" he exclaims, doing his best to get up from the ground (after all, he's badly bruised and nearly killed on numerous occasions already that day). But then, as the ladies prediction said, "he will knock four times." Immediately, in the most gorgeous performance David Tennant has ever given us, we see all the happiness and euphoria evaporate from The Doctor's face and eyes. Sadness, turmoil, and fear fill them.

The Doctor is about to face death, and all he wants to do is run.

Turning, The Doctor sees that Wilf is stuck in one of the radiation rooms. It sorta works like that room where Spock died in Wrath of Khan, and you need someone in the other room to open your room door. But now, with The Master tinkering with the machines, the radiation is going nutty, and any contact with the machine will set it off. As The Doctor stands and looks at Wilf and the current predicament, he is no longer the man of legend who can fix any problem in the galaxy. He is a weakened, fearful man, and bursts into a angry tantrum. The unfairness of the situation, how he, The Doctor, could save billions and be so much more! But here, now - The Doctor will, and always would have, make the sacrifice for the single soul.

His final act isn't fighting off a horde of monsters, saving the earth from oblivion, or anything extreme or epic. It's a single person that he needs to save, and despite his anger, despite his hatred to fate and the world, he will do what he needs to do. (END SPOILERS)

This scene perfectly compliments Tennant's wide ability as a actor, and Russel T. Davies magnificent penmanship for intimate moments between people. Not a lot of folks like Davies for his writing style and storylines (FYI, I'm not particularly thrilled with his cliffhanger wrap-ups), but one can't deny that when it comes to scenes with just two people talking, he is a master at work.

There's trillions of 'best scene ever(s)', and no doubt my favorite scene will probably change in a month or so, but right now, right here, this scene between two people with life and death hanging in the balance of a single decision by a extraordinary man in definitely my top.

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