Tear Jerker / Live-Action TV M to P
aka: Live Action TVM-P

    open/close all folders 

    The Mary Tyler Moore Show 
  • The series finale of The Mary Tyler Moore Show, for sure.
  • Murray has ghost-written an article for Ted, and it turns out to be his masterpiece. Ted stubbornly refuses to admit that Murray is the writer, until Lou confronts him, delivering the tearjerker line: "You're talking about a man who sold his name to buy a coat for his daughter."

    Mister Rogers Neighborhood 
  • Watching this show after he died of cancer. Just hearing him sing "it's such a good feeling to know that you're alive..." * sniff*
    • True story: Fred Rogers's car was stolen. And then returned the next day, intact, untouched ... with a note on the steering wheel: "We didn't know it was yours."

     Monkey Life 
  • Alison Cronin breaking down in tears on camera, discussing the death of her husband Jim and her intent to carry on running his park the way he wanted.

    Mr. Bean 
  • There's an extreme case of Mood Whiplash in the scene where a tank crushes Mr. Bean's car while he's enjoying an hors d'ouvre. It's one of the funniest moments of the series...until you see his reaction.
    • For best results, watch it muted with the show's theme playing in the background (start the theme when the first video reaches 0:39).
    • The teariest moment of Mr Bean is the day you realize just how utterly alone this man really is. He celebrates his birthday by himself, sends birthday and Christmas cards to himself, holidays by himself and the few people that do know him (his ex-girlfriend, his colleagues, the Americans from the art gallery) really can't stand to be in his presence for long - his relationship with his teddy is funny only until you realize that it's essentially an Expy for Wilson and is probably the only thing in his life fighting off potentially crippling depression. Further compounded by the fact that, whilst mischievous, he is also a very kind hearted man who probably has a lot of love to give if only he learnt how to express it properly.

  • Mythbusters pulled one. The team was examining a myth about a Lego sphere, made of 5 million bricks, rolling down a street and hitting a car, doing no damage. The team re-created the sphere with 1,000,000 bricks, and 2 weeks of hard work. The ball, less than halfway down the ramp collapsed into thousands of individual pieces. Two weeks of hard work from a team of many, many people. Down the drain.

    Series/News Radio 
  • NewsRadio The season 5 premiere "Bill Moves On" wherein the crew reflects on the passing of Bill made even poignant by the actual passing of Bill's actor Phil Hartman.
    • They had to repeatedly stop filming because the cast and crew kept breaking down.


  • When Charlie was so lost he couldn't even do a math problem while Amita was in danger.
  • The Episode The Running Man's ending scene

    NYPD Blue 
  • Bobby Simone's death on NYPD Blue.

    The OC 
  • Watching Ryan get blow after blow in the first three episodes is pretty bad, but at the end of the third episode watching his mom run out on him again and losing the last shred of hope, so he can just raise his hand to say goodbye, is heartbreaking.
  • The season 1 finalé, which sees Ryan and Seth both leaving town, is tear-jerking both for the reactions of Kristen and Sandy and for Jeff Buckley's version of Hallelujah playing over it all.

    One Life To Live 
  • The entire final two episodes definetely qualify, especially when the piano version of the opening starts playing.

    Outer Limits 
  • The Heroic Sacrifice at the end of the The Outer Limits (1963) episode "A Feasibility Study", especially the original version.
    • Better Outer Limits example, the end of "The Demon With The Glass Hand". Just....damn.

    Power Rangers 
  • The end of Power Rangers Time Force. Just... all of it. Frax and Nadira, Trip and Nadira, Alex and Jen, Wes and Jen, Wes and Eric, Ransik and Nadira... Wes's formerly-jerky father, ordering his chauffeur to drive an injured little girl to a hospital.
  • The destruction of the Command Center at the end of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers was definitely a tear-jerking experience, especially for those who had grown accustomed to the adventures of the Rangers. Seeing the good guys we've come to love for three seasons or so suffer a serious blow like that was just traumatizing. Even more gutwrenching was the fact that the Rangers had just worked hard to retrieve all five fragments of the Zeo Crystal, and well, good God.
  • One word. Zordon. His death in Power Rangers in Space was particularly tear-jerking given the very young age of most of the viewers, and the fact that everyone had grown up with the Eltarian sage. Especially tragic due to the willingness he had to kill himself to save the universe, with no regrets or hate whatsoever to Andros, whose selfishness prevented Zordon from being rescued in time to make a difference in the war. The death of every villain thus far in the series was done to sad music, as both the viewers and the characters wondered if the result was worth the price Zordon paid for it.
  • Cole from Power Rangers Wild Force may be The Scrappy but the episode where he and the Rangers learn what happened to his parents... hurt.
    • Making this even more heartbreaking is that Cole is being told what happened to his parents by Master Org, who delights his brutal actions. Also Cole visiting his parents' graves afterwards is also worth getting choked up over.
  • Tommy giving up his Green Ranger powers at the end of "The Green Candle". Apart from this being the first time that the Power Rangers had experienced a real failure instead of always winning, the scene where Tommy hands his coin to Jason is played as a very moving moment. When Tommy's shield disappears from his suit and forms on Jason. His expression of confusion then suddenly replaced with a quiet "oh" as he understands what's happening. It must be killing Jason to think of the powerful upgrades he's getting directly because he failed to help his friend.
  • Any time Dr. K's flashbacks appear or when her past is alluded to. Poor kid...
    • "Doctor K" is a Tear Jerker episode. The guilt-ridden look on her face following one of her flashbacks triggered by Tenaya 7 after being on the receiving end of her "Reason You Suck" Speech says it all.
  • "Journey's End". In one particular moment, Terra Venture has just crashed, the dome is breaking, people are trapped under rubble, and cut to a father and his son.
    Son: Daddy, are we going to make it to the new world?
    Father: (trapped under rubble) Sure. We're gonna make it.
  • Another Lost Galaxy example is Zika, who dies trying to help his father, the first Magna Defender:
    Zika: I'll save you, Father.
    Magna Defender: Zika, NOOOOO!

     The Practice 
  • One episode had Eugene helping Harland Bassett, a lawyer who'd never won a case. He's a nice guy but a terrible attorney, he's fat, has a combover, dresses terribly, and carries a fold-over briefcase that he has to clutch to his chest. Said lawyer thinks it's a shoo-in; because the defendant was accused of public exposure. The complainant said the person who flashed her had a small penis. The jury viewed the defendant's large penis, in chambers. Then they convict anyway. One of the jury members tells Gene he's a penile enhancement specialist, and could see the enhancement marks, which he told the other jurors about. Gene turns to the judge and gets her to reverse the decision, since the juror testified. The judge offers a slap on the wrist sentence, stating they won't get better even with a new trial(since the DA would now know exactly how to argue against their defence) which means Harland has still not won a single case.
    Cue the Harland going outside the courtroom, sitting down, clutching his briefcase to his chest, and breaking down crying.
    • There's also earlier where Eugene tells Harland he's not a good lawyer.
    Harland:: Hey, I've won a lot of appeals! I'm a good lawyer!
    Gene: (sadly) No. No you're not Harland. You're a nice man, but you're a bad lawyer.
  • There was also the time Eugene's son said his daddy got murderers off. Gene was disturbed, and used it to win a case. The last shot of the episode is him walking down a hallway, towards the camera, with alternating light and dark spots. At some point, he starts crying Manly Tears without any change in expression, and then walks off camera. End credits.

    The Pretender 
  • In "Red Rock Jarod," Jarod is reunited with his brother Kyle, whom he thought was dead. Unfortunately, Kyle is later shot by Mr. Lyle and dies for real in Jarod's arms. Jarod can barely hold back the tears, as he lets go of Kyle's hand.
  • In "F/X," Miss Parker, Sydney and Broots investigate one of the experiments by then-Dr. Raines, which destroyed the mind of a young boy named Timmy. What makes this such a Tearjerker is that Timmy is Angelo, who received his empathic powers from the experiment and lost his sense of self. Even the normally steely Miss Parker expresses sympathy for what became of Timmy.
  • In "Crash," Jarod gives a college student his airplane ticket, so he won't miss class registration. However, the plane crashes and the student dies. While investigating the cause, Jarod blames himself for his young friend's death. His guilt is highlighted when he examines items recovered from the crash and comes across his the student's.
    • An extra punch for viewers is Jarod coming across a charred doll and him flashing back to playing a game with a little girl.
  • In "Once in a Blue Moon," Jarod struggles to stop a copycat killer and must match wits with the "inspiration." The original killer was someone Jarod stopped during his time at The Centre, but not before one last victim was claimed. The victim is revealed to be Mr. Raines' teenaged daughter. Who couldn't be moved by a man crying over losing someone he clearly, truly loved?
  • The climax of "Bloodlines". Jarod, Miss Parker, and Angelo are holed up with a sick boy, the victim of Centre brainwashing. He has the potential to be a Pretender, and must take a special medication to undo the damage done by the Centre. Unfortunately, the only available medication belongs to Angelo, who has been taking it to recover his sanity. He's also recovering his creative abilities - specifically, a virtuoso talent at the piano - but as he gives his medication to the sick boy, he begins to lose everything. He plays "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star", each note becoming more and more out of tune. Finally, he loses all ability - and it's Miss Parker who places her hands over his, and tells him "that was beautiful".

  • The very end of Mr. Yin Presents. First, Mary's death. Then, everything from Juliet breaking down and weeping on Lassiter's shoulder while he hugs her, to Mary's funeral.
  • The end of the season 3 opener, Shawn's mother drags him into a room to try and find out what happened between Shawn and Henry to so damage their relationship. Tear Jerker the first, Shawn barely contains tears saying, in essence, that he never forgave his father for kicking his mom out and keeping everything, house and child. Then, part deux, his mother tells him that she was the one who left, meaning that Henry's not been trying to win back the woman he spurned, but who spurned him. He's been carrying a torch for her for all of Shawn's adult life.

    Punky Brewster 
  • For a primetime sitcom ostensibly geared to children, Punky Brewster had its share of emotion. Season 1's "I Love You, Brandon" had Punky's dog unconscious after being hit by a car. At the vet's clinic, she tearfully pleads for Brandon to wake up again, which he does. But as all seems to be all right, the dog of a fellow pet owner whom Punky befriended at the clinic dies. Punky cries for the loss of a friend's pet as much as she rejoiced for Brandon's deliverance.
    • "Accidents Happen" was the Space Shuttle Challenger episode. The kids' teacher Mike offers to bring a TV to class so they can watch the Challenger liftoff since a teacher—Christa McAulliffe— was on it. Immediately the scene shifts to home where Punky enters in tears. She tells Henry that the shuttle blew up.
    Punky: Some of the kids started crying. I was one of them. I couldn't stop...(voice breaking)
    • "Divorce Anderson Style" (season 3) had Allen forced to move out of town with his mom when his parents get divorced. Of all the people to lose it, it's Punky, who is seen at the end just bawling in Cherie's arms after Allen says his goodbyes and leaves.
    • "The Visit" had Cherie coming to terms with the death of her parents. She is urged to visit their graves and let out with a cathartic chat with them so wrenching, it brings Punky to tears as well as her.