"Kids, we just have to learn to accept this. Like one of those stories on Dateline, where a family member suffers a horrible accident and becomes a burden on everybody. Sure, they pretend to be happy, but they're dead inside. They're dead. And that'll be our lives."
— Lois, Family Guy
"The swirly sphere ascends and flies out into space, leaving the ravaged Earth behind, where seven billion people made fully dependent on a highly technological supply chain over the course of several generations have now been plunged into a barbarous, nightmare dark age sure to inaugurate a millennium of murder, brutality, and misery. But... Jaden Smith called Jennifer Connelly "Mom"! So that counts as a happy ending, r-right?"
Tails: All's well that ends well, right?
FTA: THE CITY'S BEEN FUCKING DESTROYED!
Once, there was an ugly barnacle. He was so ugly that everyone died. (Patrick's facial expression becomes a happy one) The end.
And so, as the sun rises on the Matrix, most of humanity's still enslaved by the robot overlords, while the rest continue to rot in a damp cave with poor ventilation miles underground. What a glorious ending to over six hours of movie!
Homer: Well, we didn't get any money, but Mr. Burns got what he wanted... Marge, I'm confused. Is this a happy ending or a sad ending?
When all is said and done, Arisa really hasn't taken any steps towards recovery, and in fact still seems very invested in what can only be called an emotionally unhealthy (or even abusive) relationship. This drastically affects the enjoyability of the series' finale, bringing it into territory that, while sadly not unfamiliar in shoujo manga, had at least been absent previously.
This is actually one of the more depressing things I've sat through, and I've watched Salò and A Serbian Film. This is a movie about a kid whose love for music is transmorphed into something quote-unquote evil by his paranoid parents until he is turned into a raving, bigoted fanatic who loses his friends, his personality, and any sense of independence.
O. Henry’s The Gift of the Magi is a tale of another sort of deadweight loss. I’ve always hated it for the cruel joke the author plays on the characters, doubly so since he declares their gifts a model of wisdom rather than heartbreak. How can that outcome be good? Everyone is worse off!
— Virginia Postrel, The Glamour And Peril Of Getting Gifts