In a banner year for great TV like 2016, it’s hard to narrow down the biggest and most important moments on screen – but that’s exactly what we’re asking you to do this December.
Here at RadioTimes.com we’ve assembled a shortlist of massive TV moments from the year so far, and now we want you to vote for your favourite. Were you hypnotised by Planet Earth, entranced by Game of Thrones, moved by Louis Theroux? Or was it the return of Cold Feet, the end of a soap legend or a ballroom-dancing MP that had you thanking the televisual gods?
Vote for your choice in the poll now, or have a look below for a few reminders about the moments that had the biggest impact over the past 12 months.
Ed Balls does Gangnam Style (Strictly Come Dancing)
The former Labour MP was the highlight of Strictly, and without question this was his finest performance.
Farage v Geldof in Barge Wars
At the height of the debate over the EU referendum, the news was dominated by the bizarre spectacle of Nigel Farage and Bob Geldoff’s rival Brexit flotillas on the Thames.
‘The Caddy’ tries to escape (Line of Duty)
The last shattering chase scene in Line of Duty series three had viewers gasping for breath. The best part? The dodgy copper finally got his comeuppance…
Danny Dyer discovers his royal ancestry (Who Do You Think You Are?)
One of the most entertaining episodes of Who Do You Think You Are? thus far came to an incredible climax as EastEnders star Danny Dyer discovered he was a direct descendant of King Edward III.
Hodor holds the door (Game of Thrones)
As terrifying ice-zombies tore him apart, the fantasy series revealed the tragic origins of Kristian Nairn’s gentle giant.
Louis Theroux meets a Savile victim (Louis Theroux: Savile)
In a documentary that revisited his previous work on Jimmy Savile, Louis Theroux was confronted by one of the sex offender’s victims, who suggested that Savile had “groomed” or “mugged off” the documentary-maker.
Ross and Elizabeth’s controversial bedroom scene (Poldark)
The BBC drama’s take on a controversial scene from Winston Graham’s Poldark novels sparked a major debate. Did Aidan Turner’s Ross rape Elizabeth? Public opinion was divided.
The Missing’s drill death (The Missing)
The one time this series of The Missing could aptly invoke the word “boring” came in a shocking hardware-themed murder.
Scarlett Moffatt is crowned Queen of the Jungle (I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!)
Gogglebox’s Scarlett triumphed in a competition lauded by fans for being the nicest reality show on TV.
Newsnight plays the Sex Pistols (Newsnight)
Conservative MP Andrew Rossindell suggested that the BBC should play the national anthem every night, and Newsnight obliged – though it was the Sex Pistols version of God Save the Queen that made it on air.
Lindsay Denton is shot (Line of Duty)
Keeley Hawes’ return to Line of Duty surprised everyone, but her character’s death shocked viewers even more.
Snake attack on baby iguanas (Planet Earth II)
If anyone had doubts that we could see anything new in a nature documentary, this heart-stopping, nightmarish chase sequence set them right.
George VI sings a Christmas carol (The Crown)
After finishing a duet with his daughter, Jared Harris’ ailing monarch delivered an emotional performance among his subjects.
Andrei and Natasha waltz at the ball (War and Peace)
The massive scale of the Tolstoy adaptation really came into its own for this sumptuous and romantic sequence.
Jon Snow is resurrected (Game of Thrones)
It was the worst kept secret in TV drama, yet also the most talked about, so when Kit Harington’s hero came back from the dead it still made waves among millions of Game of Thrones viewers worldwide.
“What door?” Bernard discovers the truth (Westworld)
Jeffrey Wright’s computer programmer realises he is one of the very robots he was hired to design, and is forced to murder his lover Theresa (Sidse Babbet Knudsen).
Pete takes the plunge – or does he? (Cold Feet)
Cold Feet fans were shocked to see John Thomson’s Pete apparently take his own life by jumping from a cliff edge – before it was revealed that it was a dream-like sequence and he was just seeing what might have been.
The farmhouse shooting (Happy Valley)
Farmer Alison (Susan Lynch) “saved” her murderer son Daryl (Robert Emms) from a life of imprisonment in the most drastic way possible, in a moment that stood out in a series packed with emotional punches.
Fleabag watches Obama (Fleabag)
Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s titular heroine was caught by her boyfriend self-pleasuring to US President Barack Obama, in an early scene that set out the stall for the groundbreaking series.
Aidan Turner in a tin bath (Poldark)
Poldark series two didn’t have any moments quite like the shirtless scythe from last year’s run, but this scene (where Aidan Turner stripped off for a wash) came close.
Tom Hiddleston bares all (The Night Manager)
The stylish action of John le Carre’s The Night Manager was almost overshadowed by a sex scene featuring the so-called “Hiddlesbum”.
John Wadsworth gives up (Happy Valley)
Kevin Doyle’s cop-turned killer took drastic steps after a failed pep talk by Catherine Cawood (Sarah Lancashire).
Val’s baking speech (The Great British Bake Off)
“Whatever I bake, I stir love into it.”
So said Bake Off contestant Val in a stirring address after she exited the competition in scenes moving enough that we almost forgot the series as we know it is gone forever. Almost.
Gilmore Girls’ final four words (Gilmore Girls)
After a decade of wondering, fans of the US comedy were finally shown how the series was always planned to end. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, those final four words certainly made an impact…
Mo Farah falls over – and still wins a gold medal (The Rio Olympics)
Team GB’s medal haul in Rio 2016 was impressive, but no triumph was quite as inspiring as Mo Farah’s in the 10,000m, successfully defending his title despite tripping over mid-race.
The Brownlee brothers go arm-in-arm to the finish line (Triathlon World Series)
When he saw his brother Jonny struggling in the Triathon World Series, Alistair Brownlee grabbed him and supported him across the finish line, sacrificing his own second place in the process.
Paul Finchley cries in the dock (National Treasure)
The finale of the harrowing sex abuse drama made a massive impact, but one scene in particular caught some viewers’ attention as entertainer Finchley (Robbie Coltrane) wept to hear one of his victims describe her assault. The fact that he later evaded justice renders the scene all the more poignant.
Gary Lineker presents in his underpants (Match of the Day)
After making an ill-advised bet that Leicester wouldn’t win the Premier League, the footballer-turned pundit stuck to his word to present the highlights show in his boxers.
The Emmerdale multi-car pile-up (Emmerdale)
One of the most ambitious stunts in soap history saw traffic carnage and many characters’ lives on the line.
England crash out of the Euros after losing to Iceland (Euro 2016)
The fairytale storyline of part-time footballers Iceland and their incredible performance in the Euros had to have some casualties, with an embarrassed England losing 2-1 to the plucky underdogs.
The Shelbys are arrested (Peaky Blinders)
The latest series of this acclaimed gangland drama saw the Shelby gang divvying up the spoils of their illegal activities, only for nearly the entire family to be arrested after getting tangled up with shady establishment figures.
The final slap (The Good Wife)
The long-running legal drama came to a close as it had began – with a slap. Though this time it was Julianna Margulies’ Alicia Florrick on the receiving end…
Adele’s carpool karaoke (The Late Late Show with James Corden)
Millions of people watched the singer make music with James Corden online, blurring the lines between TV and short-form video.
Peggy Mitchell’s letter to Phil (EastEnders)
After the death of Barbara Windsor’s long-running character Peggy Mitchell, son Phil (Steve McFadden) received an emotional posthumous letter from his mother.
Donald Trump’s acceptance speech
The lines between TV and politics blurred ever more this year as ex-reality TV star and businessman Donald Trump was elected President of the United States of America.
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