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Best of 2012: Top TV Moments of the Year (50-41)
Continuing with the end of the year countdown. I usually do a list of my Top 100 Episodes of the year, which I already posted. But that gets a little bit boring to right about so I decided to expand my horizons and do a list of my favorite TV moments. I tried to include a wide variety of programs, people, reality, variety, etc. I didn’t want everything to be scripted dramas and comedies. I also tried to limit the overuse of some shows. There were some other moments from Girls and Mad Men for that reason. Let’s continue with the countdown

50. Saturday Night Live – “Louis C.K./fun.” – Lincoln
What if Lincoln were alive today and he had a show like Louie? This short film is the answer to that question. We’ve all heard ‘crazy wife’ stories from comedians, but it takes on a whole new meaning when it comes from Abraham Lincoln. “I’m married now. My wife is crazy. She is historically insane.” Plus the great opening with Kenan Thompson as a freed slave that has no respect for the man who helped him. “Thanks for freeing us! I now shovel horse shit in a barn.”

49. Project Runway – “Women on the Go” – Two contestants voluntarily drop out of the competition
The first 10 minutes of this episode were insane. First, some of the contestants get up and find out that Andrea left during the middle of the night. Melissa saw her leave and that was it. Tim Gunn makes an announcement before handing out the assignment for the next challenge that Andrea left and won’t be returning. Then when the designers return to the workroom, Kooan decides this is the time for him to exit the competition also. It’s shocking when someone voluntarily leaves the show, but two people within the opening portion of a show is even more shocking.

48. Shameless – “A Great Cause” – Fiona finds out about the empty coffee can
Who would guess a few years ago that Emmy Rossum would be one of the best dramatic actresses on television? It’s true and this moment at the end of “A Great Cause” is a perfect example why. After Lip tells her that their mother Monica wiped out their squirrel fund hidden in the coffee can, Fiona goes upstairs to confront her mother. She yells and screams at her to try to get a response, but Monica has been on a bender and she can barely lift her head from the bed. Fiona goes back downstairs and cleans up the mess, as usual. Rossum was fantastic in this scene and proves why she’s a force to be reckoned with as an actress.

47. The Colbert Report – “March 5” – Stephen sings “Summertime” with Audra McDonald
Stephen Colbert is obviously known for being a smart ass and making fun of things. Audra McDonald was on promoting the Broadway revival of Porgy and Bess and had a pretty terrific interview. It was followed by a performance of one of the show’s popular songs “Summertime”. Audra sounded flawless as always. Then Stephen comes out to make it a duet. I was a little nervous that he was going to be making fun of the song and kind of ruining it, but it was the opposite. Stephen was actually really sincere and it turned into a really sweet moment. *Note: ColbertNation.com no longer has this clip on the site. Maybe music rights made them take it down?*

46. Parks and Recreation – “The Debate” – Andy entertains the donors
There are a lot of things to like about “The Debate”, which was written and directed by Amy Poehler, and one of my favorite parts was the subplot involving Chris Pratt’s character Andy. They are holding a special screening of the debate for campaign donors. The cable goes out so Andy is left to entertain them. He reenacts moments from his favorite movies including Road House, Rambo and a very touching Babe. It would be easy to just have him act like an idiot and have the donors rolling their eyes, but they appreciate his effort and it makes for a really great series of scenes.

45. Glee – “The Break-Up” – Santana sings “Mine”
Glee can really overcompensate in its musical numbers. Usually they are overedited and made for people with ADD. Lots of choreography that the actors can’t pull off, so they show is forced to cobble together the most coherent pieces. Then musical numbers like “Mine” come along. Naya Rivera was able to convey more emotion by just sitting in a chair and singing a song. She didn’t need any flashy choreography or overdramatic acting to portray what Santana was feeling in that moment. Naya Rivera deserves her own show.

44. Saturday Night Live – “Bruno Mars” – Sad Mouse
I’ve been really impressed with SNL’s short films during the beginning of the 38th season. Without The Lonely Island guys to fill the time with music videos, the show has been branching out and doing more experimental things. This one involved Bruno Mars as a Mouse mascot walking around Times Square taking pictures with tourists. Their excitement is contrasted by his obvious sad demeanor. At the end, he sees a Frog character that also looks sad. They meet and walk away hand in hand. It was really beautiful and much more sincere than most things you see on the show.

43. Who Do You Think You Are? – “Rita Wilson” – Rita finds out about her father’s previous wife and child in Bulgaria
I’m really sad that NBC decided to cancel the show after this season. It was really fascinating and the narratives they were able to piece together from family history were always compelling. Rita Wilson’s hour was the best episode in the show’s short history. The most moving moment came when a Bulgarian history professor showed Rita records about her father’s history before coming to America. He was married and had a child. But the wife died during child-birth and the child died four months later. It was an intense moment to watch but also incredibly moving. I have to admit, the entire episode had been dusty in the eyes and reaching for Kleenex.

42. Happy Endings – “No-Ho-Ho” – Tag: Dancing with hip-hop santa
This was just a fun moment to watch. It was the final 30 second tag where the entire cast just danced in front of the hip-hop Santa that Damon Wayans Jr.’s character owned. It was blast to watch all of them having a good time. My favorite individual dancer: Elisha Cuthbert got down pretty good.

41. Late Night with Jimmy Fallon – “October 23” – Tom Hanks does a slam poem about Full House
Tom Hanks worked his ass off to promote Cloud Atlas. He was on almost every talk show and even did a sketch with Stephen Colbert involving Halloween costumes based on Tom Hanks characters. But it was Hanks’ appearance on Jimmy Fallon that sealed the deal for me. He did a slam poetry based on the classic sitcom Full House. It was hilarious and Hanks nailed the slam poetry. “Three men raising three girls. Or…are the girls raising them?” “Wake up San Francisco!” Filled with a ton of references that I’m sure he didn’t get, he was perfect anyways.