The 10 Most Memorable TV Fight Scenes

We are now mere days away from Red Viper vs. the Mountain, but it’s not nearly soon enough. I NEED MY EPIC FIGHTS AND I NEED THEM NOW. In case you’ve forgotten, here’s what Game of Thrones co-showrunner Dan Weiss, who obviously isn’t biased at all, had to say about it: “It’s one of the best — if not the best — combat scenes we’ve done so far. It’s not just people hacking at each other with spears and swords. It’s the culmination of 20 years of anger and hatred and thirst for vengeance coming to a head…The fight delivers beyond our expectations.” Is it Sunday yet?

No, it’s not, so until then, you’ll have to make due with this list of 10 of TV’s greatest fight scenes. I don’t mean “fight scene” like when Tony and Carmela yelled at each other about gabagool — I mean, punches are thrown and blood is spilled. (I should say that I’m sure Spartacus is worthy of being on the list, but I personally haven’t seen enough of the show — let me know which scene should have made it.)

1. Hannibal Lecter vs. Jack Crawford (Hannibal)

Anyone interested in checking out “this Hannibal show” after reading so many positive season one reviews was immediately turned on by or they turned off the first scene of the show’s excellent sophomore year. It begins with a close-up shot of Hannibal slicing through meat with a knife, and ends with everyone’s favorite fine, young cannibal sticking a shard of glass into Jack Crawford’s jugular. That would be only the fifth most disturbing thing to happen all season.

2. Khal Drogo vs. Mago (Game of Thrones)

Unfortunately video of Khal’s tongue-ripping showdown with Mago isn’t embeddable, but it’s not as if you haven’t watched it approximately 183 times, and cold-called your high school buddy in the middle of the night to say “the beetles will feed on your eyes.” COME AT ME, BRO.

3. Dan Dority vs. the Captain (Deadwood)

I already (briefly) wrote about the Mud Brawl once before. Can’t do it again.

4. Walter White vs. Jesse Pinkman (Breaking Bad)

Disappointed father figure Walt and f*ck-up son Jesse fought many times over the course of Breaking Bad‘s violent five-season run, but the clear winner in the Best Fight department happens in “Bug.” Jesse, feeling betrayed that Walt bugged his car, throws the GPS tracker at his cooking partner’s head, and thus begins one of the more realistic scuffles in TV history. Neither of them looks like they’ve ever thrown a punch before, and their melee is ugly, ungraceful, and uncomfortable. It was a moment every Breaking Bad fan was waiting for, but we wanted to look away when it actually happened.

5. The Albino vs Lucas Hood (Banshee)

There are about 57 fight scenes from Banshee (it’s the TV show version of getting injected with steroids while lifting a barbell and listening to Jock Jams) that could have made this list, but I went with the Albino, because his chalk-white abs still haunt my nightmares. A penis gets slashed, meaty punches are thrown, bodies are cut, eyeballs are squeezed, necks are smashed. It’s amazing.

6. Homer Simpson vs. Tom (The Simpsons)

It’s even more painful than it looks.

7. Jimmy Valmer vs. Timmy Burch (South Park)


8. Sydney Bristow vs. Francie Calfo (Alias)

“Francie doesn’t like coffee ice cream.” When Alias was good, it was GREAT, and few scenes are as memorable as Sydney’s in-house bout with her friend Francie, well, Fake-Francie. I won’t bother explaining how Bradley Cooper’s involved, but what makes this fight so great is that for Sydney, it’s test of her physical prowess, but also her mental strength. She’s lost so much, but she can’t dwell on the past — she’s got some present ass-kicking to do.

9. The Governor vs. Michonne (The Walking Dead)

Fights on The Walking Dead are few and far between. Sure, the death count on the show is ridiculous, but most of that bloodshed is through either guns or sharp, pointy objects. So it was refreshing to see some good ol’ fashioned physical combat…underneath fish tanks filled with zombie heads…and with a sharp, pointy object (oh well). Boxers would be useless in a zombie apocalypse.

10. Pete Campbell vs. Lane Pryce (Mad Men)

“Am I the only one who wants to see?” No, Roger. You’re not.