Scene Standoff: The 40 Year Old Virgin vs. Toy Story
The infamous waxing of Steve Carell in The 40 Year Old Virgin vs. Woody giving Buzz a reality check in Toy story.
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Waxing Steve Carell - The 40 Year Old Virgin
Andy Stitzer (played by an always marvellous Steve Carell) is, like the actor who plays him, a very hairy man. And when his only friends take him to get waxed, the scene that transpires is pure improvisational comedy gold.
- Ellis' scene
"You are a Toy" - Toy Story
When Woody and Buzz find themselves outside at a petrol station, they of course blame each other. Woody (Tom Hanks) gives Buzz (Tim Allen) a reality check, screaming "You are a Toy" and Buzz replies with an incredible line: "You are a sad and strange little man, and I pity you." It's rare that film rivals have dialogue as superbly written as it is here.
- Gareth's scene
I've said it before, countless times, Tom Hanks as Woody is one of the best animated vocal performances of all time. And Tim Allen's personal best performance is Buzz Lightyear without a doubt.
And that is probably one of the most powerful animation scenes of all time.
Yeah, revolutionary. On to the other scene, they could only wax Steve Carell once. And he performs that scene so well. All the improvisational moments are great; like when he screams Kelly Clarkson. It's not quite top marks but it's still a strong scene.
THE 40 YEAR OLD VIRGIN - 9/10 TOY STORY - 10/10
This moment in Toy Story is so necessary. They're putting their cards on the table. Whereas waxing Steve Carell is one of the best scenes in the film but it still works without it.
With Toy Story it comes at a point in the story where it goes into the final act.
But it rips those two characters apart. It pushes everything for that final act.
THE 40 YEAR OLD VIRGIN - 4/10 TOY STORY - 9/10
Toy Story is referencable in the sense that you can say the quotes, however you can't say them out of concept.
I don't think you can easily reference The 40 Year Old Virgin waxing scene though.
Both of these were referenced more at the time, but now not as much. So fairly low scores.
THE 40 YEAR OLD VIRGIN - 3/10 TOY STORY - 5/10
POPULARITY (using Letterboxd for reference)
The 40 Year Old Virgin is at a 3.3, so quite low.
Yeah, Toy Story is a 4.2.
And it deserves to be. Controversially I prefer Toy Story's 2 and 3 but there you go.
THE 40 YEAR OLD VIRGIN - 3.3 TOY STORY - 4.2
On a scale of beards, how iconic are these scenes.
I'm going to go with those curly moustaches...the proper fancy ones. Because they are very iconic. With a soul patch as well like the one Buzz has.
For 40 year old virgin I am going to go with a bushy beard. It's not that iconic but there's a lot of it.
THE 40 YEAR OLD VIRGIN - bushy beard TOY STORY - curly moustache
THE FINAL STANDOFF
The 40 Year Old Virgin 5-0 Toy Story
The Toy Story franchise is full of referencable content. And the first instalment especially, with quotes galore from "falling with style" to "reach for the skies". But none of them beat this exchange under a car at a Dinoco gas station. Through the whole argument, whilst Woody becomes irate and screams, flailing his arms in the air, Buzz remains cool, calm and collected, and uses his dry wit to comeback at the cowboy doll.
And the success and memorability of this scene is somewhat down to the groundbreaking CG animation, but largely down to unmatchable vocal performances. Just from hearing audio most people would be able to visualise the scene in their minds. Will it take on other animated greats later on? We shall see!
Current Standings: G - 4 E - 4
MISSION IMPOSSIBLE VS. E.T. THE EXTRA-TERRESTRIAL
Toy Story available now on Disney+