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The Best TV Moments Of 2022

Here's a fun exercise: Start counting to 10. By the time most people reach the number six, 50 new TV shows will have been released and had Season 2 greenlit by their network or streaming service. Jokes aside, modern viewers are inundated with new shows all the time. Whether it's weekly releases or drops of entire seasons, there's no shortage of programs to watch. The sheer number of series being released on a weekly basis might be daunting, but no one can dispute that we're living in a golden age of television.

With this wealth of entertainment comes an increased demand for quality. Since there's simply so much to choose from, shows need to up their game and ensure they do everything possible to stand out in such a crowded field. They do this through all-star casts, skillful writing, revolutionary CGI, or a combination of these things. This year has been especially kind to viewers, with the release of seminal shows such as "House of the Dragon," "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power," and "The Sandman," all of which provide unforgettable moments. Which are the absolute greatest? That's what we're here to determine. These are the best TV moments of 2022 so far.

The reveal of Sauron

Set in Middle-earth's Second Age, "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power" features a few characters audiences are familiar with — namely, Galadriel and Elrond. There are many other teases throughout the season, such as the Stranger, who seems likely to be a certain powerful wizard, though it's never outright confirmed he's Gandalf. And then there's the game that Sauron plays with everyone watching. Even before Episode 1 debuted, most viewers expected Sauron would be hiding in plain sight. Going through each episode with an eye out for characters who may or may not be the Dark Lord is a whole lot of fun.

Sauron finally reveals himself in Episode 8, "Alloyed." Galadriel becomes suspicious of Halbrand and confronts him about who he really is. It's here that Halbrand peels off the proverbial mask, revealing he is indeed Sauron. He takes Galadriel into a dream and invites her to join him, so that they might rule Middle-earth together, as king and queen. She refuses. Disappointed but not mad, Sauron leaves for Mordor in a glorious final shot.

Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, actor Charlie Vickers revealed he didn't know he was playing Sauron when he signed up. "The guys sat me down right before we started filming the third episode," he remarked, "and they said to me, 'There's more to this. You're playing Sauron.'" Talk about a twist.

Morpheus versus Lucifer

One of the most impressive aspects of Netflix's "The Sandman" is how true it stays to the spirit of the original comic book series. Naturally, there are some liberties taken, and it shies away from including the source material's references to the wider DC universe. However, there's an argument to be made that one of the show's changes results in a scene that is superior to its ink-and-paper counterpart. In Episode 4, "A Hope in Hell," Morpheus travels to Hell to retrieve his helm, which has been stolen by a sneaky demon. The demon has no plans to give it back, and challenges Dream to a battle for it.

However, Dream doesn't take on the demon, as he does in the comics — he faces Lucifer instead. The fighters engage in a battle of wits, where they name creatures, disasters, and even abstract concepts. Lucifer appears to have the upper hand in this electric fight before Dream produces an inspired monologue and asks the million-dollar question: "What kills hope?" Lucifer doesn't have an answer, so Dream is declared the winner. He regains his helm (but only after the demon Mazikeen pries it out of the demon's hands). More importantly, this sequence of events creates a new rift between Dream and Lucifer, leaving the audience wondering how the Lord of Lies will take revenge on Morpheus for this embarrassing loss.

Obi-Wan defeats Darth Vader once again

While most fans probably expected Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Vader to have only one major encounter in "Obi-Wan Kenobi," they actually duel on multiple occasions. This series finds Obi-Wan having a crisis of faith in his ability to be a Jedi. At the same time, he's shattered to find out Anakin Skywalker is now the evil Sith Lord Darth Vader. When they first meet in the Disney+ series, Vader is a force of nature. He grievously burns Obi-Wan, but luckily, the Jedi Master escapes.

Fans have been waiting for their main rumble since "Star Wars: Episode III — The Revenge of the Sith." It doesn't disappoint. In Episode 6, "Part VI," Obi-Wan finally reconnects with the Force in a powerful way, and faces his former Padawan in lightsaber combat. This time, though, Obi-Wan takes the opportunity to show Vader that he's still the MVP, and that Vader failed to truly absorb the lessons he attempted to impart. It's a battle of light versus darkness, which is ultimately won by the Jedi. Obi-Wan even splits open Vader's helmet to give the viewers a look at Anakin's scarred form. This makes the Jedi realize his friend is truly gone, having been fully consumed by the Dark Side. He bids farewell to Vader, but doesn't strike the fatal blow.

The opening credits of Peacemaker

It's been a while since the opening credits of a television show dazzled the audience. HBO Max's "Peacemaker" changes this with an elaborate and over-the-top dance sequence, which sees its cast members perform to the infectious track "Do Ya Wanna Taste It" by Norwegian glamsters Wig Wam. The set is pure '80s cheese, full of bright purple accents and shiny surfaces. But the stars maintain utterly straight faces as they gyrate past swooping spotlights and searing neon. The contrast is irresistible.

Series creator James Gunn told Rolling Stone he envisioned a dance sequence and soundtrack before the show even started filming. "I wanted something in the beginning of this show that was going to be different and fun and make it clear that we were going to be a different kind of superhero show," he said, "that we didn't have any rules in place, and that would say something about the creative approach and tone." Gunn added that John Cena took a few more takes than everyone else to get it right, since he isn't a trained dancer. But by and large, everyone did a great job, and the final product is truly one of a kind.

The Boys' Herogasm shenanigans

"The Boys" has never shied away from eye-opening moments. Considering everything the show has done, in fact, some fans might have wondered if Season 3 could possibly find any further boundaries to push. The answer turned out to be an unequivocal yes. There are numerous moments from "The Boys" Season 3 that could be on this list, but a specific one still gets the giggles flowing, even after multiple re-watches.

We're talking, of course, about "Herogasm," the highlight of Season 3. From bodily explosions to Love Sausage's long salami stick making a comeback, this episode is literally one OMG-worthy moment after another. Actor Jack Quaid spoke to Insider about the experience of shooting the episode, revealing it was a truly one-of-a-kind experience. "Just to be involved in that at all, was amazing," Quaid remarked. "Hughie's particular journey within 'Herogasm' was so interesting and fun. I just ate it up, I did. It was really a joy, despite how crazy it is." As every fan who's seen the episode knows, "crazy" is definitely the word for it.

Max escapes Vecna through the power of music

In "Stranger Things" Season 4, Vecna bays for blood. Using his telekinetic influence, he breaks the bones of several kids, turning them into human "Tetris" pieces. Max is in his sights as well. Many viewers fear the worst is around the corner at this point in the story, especially after she writes farewell letters to her friends and family.

In "Chapter Four: Dear Billy," Vecna takes hold of Max's body and transfers her into his mind, where he prepares to finish her off. However, the power of music comes into play, as Max's friends put headphones over her ears and play her favorite track, Kate Bush's "Running Up That Hill." It's an emotional moment as Max sheds tears and remembers all the joy and pain she's felt in her young life. A portal opens, allowing her to escape from Vecna and his legions. It's all thanks to the poignant tune.

In an interview with Variety, Bush said she was shocked to see the song surge in popularity after it appeared in "Stranger Things." She's also quite pleased by how it's utilized. "I thought, what a lovely way for the song to be used in such a positive way — you know, as a kind of talisman, almost, for Max," she said. "And yeah, I think it's very touching, actually."

Daredevil's appearance on She-Hulk: Attorney at Law

Netflix's Marvel shows all have their highs and lows. However, no one can argue that Charlie Cox and Daredevil are anything but a match made in casting heaven. This version of the horned superhero captures him at his absolute best. Even after Netflix's Marvel shows were canceled, fans petitioned for Cox's Daredevil to be integrated into the MCU. This paid off: Cox's Daredevil makes a brief cameo appearance in "Spider-Man: No Way Home."

But that wasn't the end for this take on the Man Without Fear. Cox's Daredevil also appears on "She-Hulk: Attorney at Law." Some viewers might read that sentence and fear that this comedically-inclined show waters the character down. But in fact, the moment Daredevil encounters She-Hulk for the first time in the episode "Ribbit and Rip It" is perfect. They brawl it out before teaming up to take down the bad guys in a terrific fight sequence. To top it all off, Jen Walters and Matt Murdock hook up, proving that superheroes can make time for a personal life as well as a crime-fighting career.

Arrax and Vhagar's battle in the sky

"House of the Dragon" loves a breathtaking dragon flight sequence, but the one in the final episode shakes things up by being absolutely brutal. Aemond Targaryen still holds a grudge against Lucerys Velaryon for taking his eye. In the Season 1 finale "The Black Queen," he demands retribution. When he doesn't get it, he hops on his fire-breathing beast Vhagar and chases Lucerys, who rides the dragon Arrax, into the sky. Unfortunately, both dragons appear to be hot-headed, as they don't listen to their riders and eventually do their own thing. Arrax decides to turn up the heat on Vhagar, who doesn't take too kindly to the aggression. The ancient dragon makes this clear when he swoops in and gobbles up both Arrax and Lucerys in one fatal bite.

While it isn't quite clear what Aemond hoped to achieve if he caught Lucerys, it's certain he never expected this outcome. It's a devastating moment, reminscent of the infamous Red Wedding from "Game of Thrones." It's also a pivotal scene, as it will doubtlessly spur Rhaenyra, Lucerys' mother, into a campaign of fire and blood against Aemond and his family.

Dan Chase's dogs catch the car

One of the most surprising shows of 2022 is the action-thriller series "The Old Man," starring Jeff Bridges. While some people might assume it's just a variation on the tried-and-true "Taken" formula, it's actually a very deep show that reveals more and more about its characters with every passing episode. It certainly isn't short on action either, as Bridges' character, Dan Chase, fights to stay alive throughout the season. One of his best action sequences takes place in Episode 1, "I."

Failing to heed FBI official Harold Harper's advice to drive away from the men tailing him, Chase turns his car around and faces them. In the ensuing battle, Chase is overpowered and placed in another car, leaving his two Rottweilers, Dave and Carol, behind on the dirt road. As the vehicle drives away, the dogs run after it. No one expects them to catch up, since horsepower and dog-power are two different things. Eventually, Chase fights back against his captor, causing the car to crash. The two men fight for superiority in the wreckage, but there's an ace up Chase's sleeve: His dogs never stopped running. They soon appear and take care of the aggressor. This scene is thrilling, and also answers an immortal question: What would a dog do if it actually caught a car?

Robby and Miguel finally make peace

"Cobra Kai" is the gift that keeps on giving. Even after five seasons, viewers can't get enough of the battle between rival karate dojos in the Valley. Season 5 attempts to quell some of this bad blood, as many characters finally put their issues aside and laugh about how silly they've all been. Robby Keene and Miguel Diaz are a prime example. These two have been bitter enemies for a while, but they need to get along, now that how Robby's father, Johnny Lawrence, is dating Miguel's mother, Carmen Diaz.

Johnny does his best to try and get Miguel and Robby to call a truce. He speaks to them, brings them together, and even tries to set up a fun escape room exercise. but nothing works — these two seem destined to stay adversaries. Then, in the episode "Extreme Measures," Johnny has an idea: Since this is all about karate, why not let them fight it out?

This proves to be an ingenious idea as the boys knock the living snot out of each other. That being said, they do get close to taking it too far. Luckily, they come to their senses and finally put down all the anger they've been carrying. From this point on, they become pals. See? Sometimes fists are more effective than words.

The unexpected reveal of Armand

Season 1 of "Interview with the Vampire" centers around the relationship between Lestat and Louis. There are significant time jumps involved as Louis recounts his relationship with his lover to Daniel Molloy, as well as the role Claudia played in helping him realize Lestat wasn't good for him. The audience is also introduced to a man named Rashid, who helps Louis in the current day.

The Season 1 finale, "The Thing Lay Still," throws a major curveball when Rashid is revealed to be the vampire Armand, the love of Louis' life. This twist is a jaw-dropping one, as Louis has yet to meet Armand in this adaptation, and few fans expected them to be together in modern times. It was just as surprising to actor Assad Zaman, who revealed to ComicBook.com that he had no idea he was set to play Armand. "I didn't know," he said. "I didn't know in my first couple of auditions who I was actually auditioning for, and I found out halfway through the process." This makes Armand's reveal that rarest of things: a fictional and real-world twist.

The entirety of Werewolf by Night

Marvel Studios has done a fantastic job of making the MCU synonymous with the entire superhero genre. That being said, it does have a formula it follows fairly strictly. This is why "Werewolf by Night" is such an impressive surprise. First off, it's a one-off special for Disney+, clocking in at just 52 minutes. Second, it's entirely shot in black and white, in a clear nod towards classic Hollywood. Third, it's a straight-up horror story featuring major Marvel monsters — principally, the titular werewolf and the infamous Man-Thing.

What results is one of the most inspired and imaginative pieces of television in 2022. It defies all expectations of what a Marvel production can be, and proves the franchise can still be taken into uncharted waters. In the accompanying documentary "Director by Night," director Michael Giacchino revealed Marvel Studios head honcho Kevin Feige was shocked by his request to do something with the character Werewolf by Night. But the studio went ahead and took this huge gamble, proving once again that Marvel really is the House of Ideas.