%% DON'T SAY "I" OR "THIS TROPER" OR LINK TO YOUR USERNAME %%
%% Just because Tear Jerkers aren't on the same namespace doesn't make the rules different. %%

[[quoteright:320:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/KyleCartmanCrying_7556.png]]
[[caption-width-right:320:Cartman just has [[SandInMyEyes something in his eye]].]]

''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' may be known for being [[BlackComedy so offensive]] [[CrossesTheLineTwice it's funny]], but they've also managed to get us [[TearJerker teary eyed]].

For moments specific to a particular entry, go to the following:
[[index]]
* TearJerker/SouthParkBiggerLongerAndUncut
* TearJerker/SouthParkTheStickOfTruth
* TearJerker/SouthParkTheFracturedButWhole
[[/index]]
----
[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:General]]
* Really, [[TheWoobie Pip]] in general [[spoiler: before his death in Season 14]]. The poor boy is a really nice and friendly person, but almost everyone hates him for next to no reason, even [[OnlySaneMan Chef.]] No one even acknowledge's his accomplishments whatsoever, yet he still continues to be a chipper bright person despite it all. Makes you wanna give him a hug.
* Any time when Kyle is so depressed, he actually ''agrees'' with Cartman's bigoted opinions (ex. "Mr. Garrison's Fancy New Vagina" and "The Passion Of The Jew").
* [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wec9mU4BfqA This video]] shows us how creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone felt shortly after the death of voice actress, Mary Kay Bergman. You can tell from the way they talked and looked talking about her that it really hit hard for them.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 1]]
[[AC:An Elephant Makes Love to a Pig]]
* Shelly saves Stan from being sent away (but not before kicking his ass yet again)

[[AC:Starvin Marvin]]
* Marvin brings Thanksgiving to Ethiopia after the mutant turkeys get slaughtered.

[[AC:Pinkeye]]
* Stan telling Wendy that he wished she were dead, after she donated her Halloween candy to starving children in Nairobi, and Stan wanted to trick-or-treat with her.
** And later when Stan sees she's become a zombie and must choose whether to kill her or not.

[[AC:Mr. Hankey the Christmas Poo]]
* Kyle's "I'm a Jew on Christmas" song.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 2]]
[[AC:Ike's Wee Wee]]
* With some AdultFear mixed in, Sheila screaming at (what she thinks is) Ike getting mauled by a dog.

[[AC:Chef's Salty Chocolate Balls]]
* [[spoiler: Mr. Hankey's apparent death, and the montage following.]] TheWoobie in [[spoiler: Kyle]] was clearly visible.
-->'''Kyle''': [[spoiler: ''(weeping)'' I'll never forget you. You were my best friend after Stan.]]

[[AC:Mr. Hankey's Christmas Classics]]
* The cast singing "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" for two reasons. One, them showing Mary Kay Bergman's characters (she committed suicide shortly before) and the boys saying that they'll be together throughout the years if the fates allow, not aware they'll be together for at least the next eleven seasons.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 4]]
[[AC:Cartman's Silly Hate Crime 2000]]
* Cartman crying for his mom while in juvenile hall.

[[AC:Chef Goes Nanners]]
* [[spoiler:Wendy declares that all of her feelings for Cartman are gone, and she runs off after Stan while Cartman sighs and shuffles offscreen, dejected.]]

[[AC:Fourth Grade]]
* The "Third Grade" song. Clyde actually cries after hearing it.

[[AC:Heller Keller! The Musical]]
* There is this heart-breaking bit where Timmy has to give up his pet turkey Gobbles. And then it has people all down the street, with dead relatives and run-over dogs, and you're just waiting for the joke, but then some lady comes on the screen, and she says something like, "What have you done today?" and then it pans to the sky. Very sad.
** Then again, that WAS the joke. It was kind of like a parody of those Public Service Announcements. Still, the scene is tragic and maybe even the joke added to the tears.

[[AC:Fat Camp]]
* Cartman gets sent to a fat camp and, being Cartman, figures out a way to exploit the other fat kids by selling them candy. The weeks go by and none of the kids lose any weight. At the end of the episode, the kids' parents angrily take the children home, demanding refunds, until one of the kids speaks out and tearfully confesses that Cartman has been selling them all candy.
--> '''Horace:''' "No, he's right. The counselors've been doing a good job. We've just been cheating. I believe I can lose the weight with exercise and proper diet. I don't wanna make excuses no more."
** One of the campers named [[TheWoobie Chad]] comes on screen crying to Cartman about his weight woes; how he is always going to be fat, has been to seven camps, and can't control his eating habits. Made worse when Cartman [[KicktheDog offers him a chocolate bar calling it a "Friend"]] and Chad nibbles the bar tearfully.
--->'''Camper:''' [sobbing] 'Cause I'm always gonna be fat. I don't wanna eat no sweets, but I can't control myself when they're right in front of me like this. [sobs some more. Cartman moves away a bit] All my life I've been fat. I've beh- I've been to seven camps and I swore to my momma that I'd lose the weight. I want to, but I can't help myself. [breaks down]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 5]]
[[AC:Cartmanland]]
* Cartman's grandmother dies and leaves him a million dollars. Rather than save it or donate it to charity, Cartman decides to buy a theme park that only he can enjoy and no one else can come in. The whole ordeal upsets Kyle greatly because he knows people like Cartman do horrible things to people on a daily basis, yet [[KarmaHoudini they never get punished for their actions]] while Kyle himself suffers a nasty hemorrhoid for no reason, even though he does his best to do the right things in life. Kyle also sees Cartman putting up television ads that show off his theme park while still bragging about how no one is allowed to visit it. Kyle then renounces his Jewish faith and believes that if people like Cartman can get away with anything while Kyle suffers for no reason, then there is no god. Towards the end of the episode, Kyle is slowly dying from his hemorrhoid because ''[[DespairEventHorizon he gave up the will to live]]''. Stan tells Cartman what is happening to Kyle, but naturally, Cartman doesn't care. Once Cartman starts to feel the effects of LaserGuidedKarma by being forced to sell his park back to the original owner and then losing everything to the IRS for tax evasion, Stan takes Kyle out to the park to witness Cartman's meltdown and seeing it is what brings Kyle back to life.
** What really makes it hurt is when Kyle and Stan attempt to climb over the huge fence to the park to spite Cartman. While climbing the fence, Kyle pops his hemorrhoid and starts sobbing in pain. It seems really stupid (and probably is), but there's just something about the way Kyle breaks down just really makes you feel for him.

[[AC:Kenny Dies]]
* Stan spends the entire time afraid to face Kenny as he wastes away. He works up the courage to visit him at the end of the episode, and to a triumphant tune, he strides in to the hospital with a present for Kenny and an ear-to-ear grin. The scene that ensues is one of the most powerful uses of MoodWhiplash there is.
-->'''Stan:''' Did he say anything before he went?
-->'''Kyle:''' He just said... "[[spoiler:...Where's Stan?]]"
-->''[fade to black]''
* Cartman crying on Kyle's shoulder after talking to Kenny in the hospital. ''[[TheSociopath Eric]] [[VillainProtagonist Cartman]]'' crying genuine tears of sorrow.
** He later goes before Congress to plead with them to legalize stem cell research so that Kenny might be helped, singing "Heat of the Moment" by {{Music/Asia}}, eventually getting ''everyone'' standing and singing along.
---->'''Cartman''': My name is Eric Cartman and I live in Colorado. My best friend in the whole world's Kenny [=McCormick=] and h-he's sick right now. He's real sick. He's only eight-years-old and the doctors don't think he has very long to live. Look, I realize that using the tissue from aborted fetuses for research is a touchy subject, but... all I know is that if there's a chance - a ''chance'' - that stem-cell research can save my best friend's life, well... I guess I owe it to him to try and change your minds. I love Kenny [=McCormick=], and-[''chokes up briefly''] and I want you to love him too.
** I always assumed Cartman might be crying from ''happiness'', with him suddenly coming up with a way to make Stem Cell research legal again so he could sell off the aborted foetuses. He had just realised he could use Kenny as emotional leverage. It being Cartman, he considers Kenny's possible recovery a convenient side-effect of him making money. Cartman gets money and Kenny gets better. Everybody wins. Being sociopathic, Cartman can't see what's wrong with thinking that way.
** Cartman doesn't know about the potential of stem cell research, just how much the fetuses are worth, until he visits the research group. This makes it even more twisted, as this means that Cartman is genuinely mournful over Kenny until it becomes profitable. He's so sociopathic, he alienates ''his'' feelings.
*** When he's listing the bad things he's done in "The Death of Eric Cartman", the only thing from this episode he mentions is that he convinced a woman to get an abortion so he could build his own Shakey's Pizza. Notably, he does ''not'' say anything about exploiting Kenny's illness to do so, which seems to confirm that he did actually care about helping him.
* According to [[WordofGod Parker/Stone]], one of the goals was see how far they could go in one episode without telling a single joke. There is some dark humour (hearing "On The Road Again" as a bunch of foetuses are packed up, the Make A Wish foundation being put in its place, Cartman's enthusiasm over dead foetuses, Chef comforting Stan) but none of the dirty and sexual jokes South Park was by then famous for.

[[AC:Butters Very Own Episode]]
* It can make you cry like that seeing that kid being treated like crap, and specifically Butters saying [[spoiler: "No, I'm lying" after seeing the truth of the matter]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 7]]
[[AC:Raisins]]
* Stan's monologue:
-->'''Stan:''' You guys have no idea how this feels. It's like... you always hear songs about a broken heart and you think it's just a figure of speech. But it's true. My chest hurts. I have this... like... sinking feeling where my heart is. ''It's broken.''
** Believe it or not, this is actually TruthInTelevision. It's called Takotsubo cardiomyopathy - severe chest pain and possible heart failure caused by severe emotional stress.
* Butters' "beautiful sadness" speech in "Raisins," where, after Butters finds out the Raisins girl he pined over only liked him so she can get more money out of him at the restaurant, the Goth kids want Butters to be one of them, but Butters declines, stating that his being upset that he got dumped is actually a beautiful thing because the sadness makes him feel human.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 8]]
[[AC:Woodland Critter Christmas]]
* The mountain lion's death. Even though you don't know the Woodland Critters [[spoiler:worship Satan]] yet, it's still depressing when [[PleaseWakeUp the mountain lion's children cry over her death]].
** Plus making Stan [[WhatTheHellHero feel like a dick for the rest of the episode.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 9]]
[[AC:Best Friends Forever]]
* While not to the same extent as Kenny Dies, it plays very similar.

[[AC:Marjorine]]
* Linda Stotch is completely hysterical at Butter's apparent death. She's screaming and sobbing over the adorable blue coffin and Stephen has to hold her back. We know he's alive, but she doesn't.
* Something that makes more sense in Hindsight, Butters (dressed as Marjorine) sobs out in the bathroom to the girls "You have no idea how hard it is to be me!" Butters says "me", not "The new girl". He's not acting...

[[AC:Free Willzyx]]
* The boys become convinced, by a stupid prank, that an orca from Sea World is actually an alien and will die unless he goes home to the moon. They go to quite extraordinary lengths to help it, recruiting the Animal Liberation Front to rescue him and drive them down to Mexico for a cheap space program (the ALF think that they're trying to release him back into the ocean). [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone The sheer horror of the ALF when they realize what's happening is bad enough,]] but worst of all is the ending. [[spoiler: Willzyx asphyxiates on the moon, and the credits roll in eerie silence.]]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 10]]
[[AC:The Return of Chef]]
* The whole damn climax and ending, but particularly "Chef... we love you" and then Kyle's usual CatchPhrase only this time it's so much more. And Cartman's attempt at a HopeSpot makes it even more heartbreaking.
* Also the episodes opening having Cartman genuinely in tears as Chef leaves.
* Chef's eulogy. One gets the feeling that this is really Creator/TreyParkerAndMattStone saying goodbye to [[TheCharacterDiedWithHim Isaac Hayes]].
-->'''Kyle''': We are all here today because Chef has been an important part of our lives. A lot of us don't agree with the choices Chef has made in the last few days. Some of us feel hurt and confused that he seemed to turn his back on us. But we can't let the events of the last week take away the memories of how much Chef made us smile. I'm going to remember Chef as the jolly old guy who always broke into song. Iím going to remember Chef as the guy who gave us advice to live by. So you see we shouldn't be mad at Chef for leaving us. We should be mad at that fruity little club for scrambling his brains.

[[AC:A Million Little Fibers]]
* A big, BIG YMMV, but the deaths of [[spoiler:Mingee and Gary]].
** Who'd have thought television viewers could get so attached to [[spoiler:a talking vagina and bunghole?]]
** Only on South Park, my friend. Only on South Park.

[[AC:Tsst]]
* This episode reveals that Cartman's mother, Liane, has a lot of personal problems and she's a deeply lonely person with no friends. Worst of all, her son is a psychopath and she isn't strong enough to discipline him, and because of her aforementioned loneliness, she only spoils him because it makes her feel needed by him. Just when it seems like Cartman is about to reform with the help of Caesar Milan, Liane begins to fall for him and he turns her down. She then slips right back into the old routine of letting Cartman run her life.

[[AC:Stanley's Cup]]
* Stan coaches a kindergarten hockey team, and one of the team members (Nelson) is suffering from cancer. Nelson ends up in the hospital, and the fate of him depends on whether or not the team wins. Eventually, the team plays against the Detroit Red Wings, but are beaten senseless and lose, so then Nelson, watching the match on TV in the hospital, says "No hope..." and then dies. Sure, it was probably played for laughs, but think about it: This kid just wanted to see his team win for once, but the last thing he saw before he died was his team being brutally beat down and losing.
* Every time Nelson says anything, the waterworks will start. It almost comes off like his voice actor didn't know what kind of show this was, because he delivers his lines like this was a ''serious drama.'' His performance is so heartfelt that you could be forgiven for thinking they actually got a terminal cancer patient to voice the character.
* This line can be very depressing especially the fact no one seems to care about the implications of it.
-->'''#6:''' "Coach please don't let us lose to Adams County, my daddy will beat me again."
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 11]]
[[AC:Cartman Sucks]]
* Seeing the bodies of the gay children who committed suicide can be harrowing to watch.
* Heck, this entire episode can be one long {{Tearjerker}} for anyone familiar with religious parents and figures trying to insist their sexuality is evil and can be changed.
* Bradley's reaction to realizing he may have romantic feelings for Butters. While his panic and Butters's ignorance is mostly PlayedForLaughs, it's heartbreaking for anyone that knows how that kind of homophobic Christian damage feels.

[[AC:Le Petite Tourette]]
* While most of it was PlayedForLaughs, some of the things Cartman blurted out actually made you feel ''bad'' for him, and... no, I'm serious, you felt bad for Cartman.
-->'''Cartman:''' I cry at night because I don't have a dad!
* When Kyle's at the Tourette's building and sees kids who actually DO have Tourettes, a kid gives a very sad story about his dad divorcing his mom simply of his son's illness. The kid ends the story saying that he'd probably be better off dead. It makes Cartman's abuse of it all the more infuriating-maybe until you get to the above, but still.

[[AC:Guitar Queer-O]]
* Stan on his ''Heroin Hero'' trips are pretty moving, as is his post-meltdown sequence while playing a driving game. And when he makes up with Kyle, that's moving too.

[[AC:The List]]
* There's funny stuff in that episode. And then there's [[spoiler: Kyle]] ranting to himself obsessively while getting ready to burn the school down.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 12]]
[[AC:Britney's New Look]]
* You probably never thought it was possible to feel sorry for Music/BritneySpears before watching this episode.
** The episode starts off funny enough, when a "news" segment called "Britney Watch" shows her taking a piss on a ladybug while camping in South Park, with only her face being censored. You can tell Trey and Matt are about to totally rip on her. [[spoiler: Then, when the boys get to her hotel room to get an embarrassing picture of her to sell to the news, it shows Britney, completely in tears under severe stress from constantly being harassed and degraded by the press and photographers. When Stan, Kyle, Cartman and Butters (the latter who doesn't want to go through with it) show up, she decides she's had enough, grabs a gun and [[AteHisGun blows her brains out]], '''''right in front of them.''''' She survives, but [[AndIMustScream is unable to see, hear, or smell anything, and can only speak in a weak gurgling noise.]] Stan and Kyle are horrified when they see what their actions resulted in, and, with the help of Britney's manager, try to get her away from the paparazzi, who are ''still'' chasing after her...only for her manager to immediately force her into the recording studio for a singing session, being made fun of by several of the staff. He then forces her to perform onstage, and the audience members make fun of her, too. Finally, Stan and Kyle decide to get her to the North Pole, '''and the paparazzi follow her all the way there.''' They then reveal that their purpose is to [[HumanSacrifice kill her as a sacrifice for a corn harvest,]] and proceed to take photographs of her, until she lies on the ground dead. Britney is harassed, humiliated, ridiculed, and her life is completely ruined, and even after the media push her over the edge and force her to go through with [[DrivenToSuicide killing herself]] (which ultimately failed), they weren't satisfied until she was finally dead at their feet. '''''DAMN.''''' [[MoralEventHorizon The "friendly faces everywhere" from the opening song can officially be taken out]].]]

[[AC:Major Boobage]]
* Cartman [[spoiler:hiding all the cats he found, like a rip from an Anne Frank movie]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 13]]
[[AC:The Ring]]
* Kenny's funeral at the end of the episode.
-->'''Father Maxi:''' And so, as we commit this young child to the earth, let us all be reminded that syphilis is still a deadly disease, and it can be caught even if using protection. This young boy learned the hard way that there's no guarantee... For the world of oral sex is a world...
-->'''Cartman:''' I told him... A woman's mouth is the most germ-ridden place on earth, I said. Statistically the most unsafe place for a man to put his penis, I said.
* Although, it's a bit more of a meta-example, the fact that Kenny is never seen with Tammy again.
[[AC:Pinewood Derby]]
* There's a man who, when he loses the derby, kills himself in front of his son. Suicide humor isn't unheard of from South Park and usually, it's pretty damn funny. What separates this joke, however, is that the son, with a horrified expression, starts yelling to himself "He's okay!" over and over.
** Something similar happens in "Coon vs. Coon & Friends" where, distressed that no one remembers him dying (something that isn't exactly new), Kenny [[spoiler:shoots himself in the head in hopes that his friends will remember him committing suicide right in front of their eyes, much to the horror of Stan and Kyle.]]
*** It's not the usual glazed-eyed "Oh my God, they killed Kenny," of the early seasons. Each time Kenny dies in Coon & Friends, everyone else reacts with realistic, and rather heart wrenching, horror.

[[AC:Fatbeard]]
* Cartman goes to Somalia with Butters, Clyde, Kevin, and Ike. There's one pirate who explains to Butters and Ike why he became a pirate, is scared every day because he fears his family will die, does not want to be a pirate, and can't understand why anybody would want to live like that.
-->'''Pirate:''' Every day, I dream that I can go to school, learn about the world. But my mother, she is dying of AIDS, and there is no money for medicine. My father was killed trying to find food for us. Do you know how I feel every time we try to capture a boat? Scared! And not just scared because I might get killed, but scared because if I don't get something out of it, ''my family and friends are going to die!'' I don't ''want'' to be a pirate. I don't see how ''anybody'' would!
-->'''Ike''': [[HeelRealization Oh my God. I feel like an]] ''[[HeelRealization asshole]]''.

[[AC:Whale Whores]]
* Stan watching in horror as the Japanese kill the whales and dolphins at the aquarium where he's taken to for his 9th birthday. His birthday gifts being a bloodied "I swam with dolphins" shirt and a photo of him with a murdered dolphin just seals the cake.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 14]]
[[AC:The Tale of Scrotie [=McBoogerballs=]]]
* [[spoiler:All of Butters' former readers now want him dead as his second book became instrumental in the murders of the Kardashian family. The boys try to rub it in his face that his fame has plummeted, but Butters couldn't care less as he's horrified that his own book got Kim Kardashian, whom he had a crush on, and her family killed.]]

[[AC:You Have 0 Friends]]
* Kyle [[spoiler:deleting Kip Drordy as a friend on Facebook]]. It's much sadder than it sounds.
* Earlier when he lost all of his Facebook friends for befriending Kip in the first place. Makes you think which one is the bigger {{Woobie}}, huh?
** [[spoiler: They both are. Kip because everyone avoids him for next to no reason and Kyle, just for being nice to him, loses everyone just for being nice to Kip, just for showing a kid kindness. It makes what happens below all the more satisfying.]] It improves at the end when [[spoiler: all of the "friends" collected by Stan's vanquished self-aware profile were transferred to Kip. It's rare to find any individual profile with 200,000+ Facebook friends!]]

[[AC:Crippled Summer]]
* Towelie trying to overcome his drug addiction.

[[AC:It's A Jersey Thing]]
* When Kyle discovers his Jersey side ''Film/TeenWolf''-style.
-->'''Kyle:''' What ''am'' I, Mom?

[[AC: Coon vs. Coon & Friends]]
* Distressed that no one remembers him [[spoiler: dying (something that isn't exactly new), Kenny shoots himself in the head in hopes that his friends will remember him committing suicide right in front of their eyes]], much to the horror of Stan and Kyle.
** It's not the usual glazed-eyed "Oh my God, they killed Kenny," of the early seasons. Each time Kenny dies in Coon & Friends, everyone else reacts with realistic, and rather heart wrenching, horror.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 15]]
[[AC:Royal Pudding]]
* Mr Mackey may have been an asshole to the kids doing the dental hygiene play, but he reveals that [[spoiler:his father had been killed by tooth decay two years ago]].

[[AC:You're Getting Old]]
* This episode is easily one of the most depressing episodes so far. It starts off initially well, with Stan having his 10th birthday party surrounded by friends and family. He receives a CD from Kyle featuring music that his mother, Sharon, disapproves of (because "it sounds like crap"), and it's taken away. However, Stan has already downloaded the music to his iPod, and begins listening to it, only to realize that he [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin only hears shit]]. He speaks to Kyle about this, who can apparently hear the music perfectly, and Kyle suggests that he sees a doctor. The doctor administers some tests which consist of playing two music tracks (both of which sound like more crap to Stan), and then comparing a poster of crap to a poster of an upcoming movie to Stan, to which he responds that they look the same. The doctor eventually tells him that he's developing cynicism, which comes with age, and it will entail viewing and hearing things that once seemed great as a child, as crap. Stan continues to go about his life as more and more things appear as crap to him while Randy gets into more youth-related mishaps with the new musical movement (naturally, this is all PlayedForLaughs, with even a bit of LampshadeHanging thrown in by Sharon, up until the [[MoodWhiplash last five minutes of the episode]]). Things eventually turn darker as [[spoiler: Stan's friends completely alienate him due to his new attitude, and to make things worse, Randy and Sharon begin to argue and acknowledge that neither of them are happy with their lives anymore]]. The episode ends with [[spoiler: Stan seeing everything as crap now, even his former best friend Kyle, while Randy and Sharon begin to sell their house and divide their belongings as they prepare for their upcoming divorce.]]
* What about when [[spoiler: the real version of "Landslide" started playing? Not some usual South Park parody, but the real freaking song as sung by [[Music/FleetwoodMac Stevie Nicks]]. And seeing Sharon packing up the china. It doesn't hit you that there would be no crap-people, no Satan dressed as Music/BritneySpears, no Creator/TomCruise or government conspiracy to save the day. And that hurt. We have grown up on this show, and to see it come to it's end is painful. That's the TearJerker here. That a show we have grown-up with and and loved will end soon.]]
* [[spoiler: The whole conversation between Randy and Sharon sounds horribly like Matt and Trey expressing the unsaid tensions of the show's difficult period, making this a meta-Tearjerker.]]
** It gets even sadder for three reasons: 1. Two men stealing underwear from Randy in order to protect them from his shitting on stage, no matter how surprisingly entertaining it is especially in this episode, doesn't make it any less depressing. and 2. Seeing [[spoiler: Randy, who's random interests has been one of the funniest parts of the show, suddenly reveal that he was actually hiding his boredom with life. Yes, that's right, all of those great episodes are truly about a man trying to avoid the truth about his life, take them from crowning moments of funny to {{Funny Aneurysm Moment}}s. ''shivers'']] and finally 3. [[spoiler: Stan and Kyle's friendship ending, especially Stan seeing his friend as a literal pile of shit after all of those other times they've separated, after all the other things that nearly tore them apart, it just hurts. The fact Cartman and Kyle, who normally can barely stand each other are seen happily playing together while Stan is who knows where, seeing the world as shit and having had his parents split up and being unable to enjoy anything. Wow. Just wow.]]
* Stone and Parker have recently confirmed that the show ''will'' continue, which makes you wonder what this episode was all about.
* What ''generally'' seems to have happened, among other things, is that Stone and Parker were feeling kind of down from keeping up the frenetic pace of producing 14 episodes per season - actually, split into two micro-seasons per year of 7 episodes each, one in spring and one in fall. They were noticeably cranking out some filler episodes and overall don't seem to have been satisfied with the situation. "You're Getting Old" was the mid Season 15 finale. But then, starting with Season 17, Stone and Parker abandoned this split-season model to make only 10 episodes per season, all aired in fall instead of spread across the year. They explicitly said they wanted to do this to focus on quality over quantity - and seasons since have received ''widespread acclaim'' from critics for their quality and innovation. Starting in Season 18, they even started experimenting with making season long storyarcs. The point of this long explanation: don't walk away from the above feeling depressed, things ''were'' pretty shitty by Season 15, but they got better.
* This episode can work as a metaphor for just getting more and more cynical and depressed with age or even just depression.

[[AC:Ass Burgers]]
* Continuing from the previous episode, this one [[spoiler:snapped everything back to status quo]] with the exception that [[spoiler:Stan has turned to alcohol to escape the monotony]]. The poignancy of it all makes it perhaps a greater tearjerker than the episode that preceded it.
* Stan being diagnosed with Asperger's despite ''clearly'' having depression is tremendously sad since there are actual mental health experts in South Park, yet due to the AdultsAreUseless trope, are rendered completely incompetent and unable to help Stan.
** This troper finds it difficult to watch "Ass Burgers" due to having Aspergers, Depression, Cynicism, and divorced parents, just like Stan.

[[AC:Broadway Bro Down]]
* Shelly's {{Adorkable}} new boyfriend [[spoiler: [[IronicDeath drowns to death the first time he took off the life preserver his parents always made him wear]]]].

[[AC:1%]]
* Cartman does deserve punishment for a lot of things but how can you not feel bad for him as [[spoiler:one by one, all his favorite toys are destroyed. The kicker is that his Polly Prissy Pants doll turns out to be the one who killed off his other toys and asks Cartman to kill her. He, with tears in his eyes, complies.]]
** [[spoiler: This isn't the doll gaining sentience like usual SP tradition. This is Cartman, destroying all his favorite childhood toys, in his version of "Growing Up"]]. That's both terrifiyng and sad at the same time.
* The terrified looks on Stan, Kyle, Kenny, and Token's faces as they witness the above and [[spoiler: realize it was their teasing from earlier in the episode that made Cartman do this]].

[[AC:The Poor Kid]]
* Everything that happens to Karen. Gives the name of the episode a double meaning.
* The abuse the Weatherheads put their foster children through, combined with Mr. Adams horrified reaction.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 16]]
[[AC:Reverse Cowgirl]]
* [[spoiler:The death of Clyde's mother]].
** Then her ghost telling Clyde that [[KickTheDog he was responsible for her death]] [[ItMakesSenseInContext for not putting the toilet seat down.]]
** YMMV, because she embarrassed Clyde in front of his friends and school because of the toilet seat, so when she died, [[AssholeVictim nobody watching the episode seemed to]] [[{{Pun}} give a shit]].

[[AC:Cash for Gold]]
* There's a heartbreaking scene where Grandpa Marsh tells Stan about his dog.
-->'''Grandpa:''' Billy, did I ever tell you I used to have a border collie named Patches? \\
'''Stan:''' Yes, Grandpa. \\
'''Grandpa:''' I loved that dog. She always made me so happy. When she died I didn't let myself get too sad, because I thought I'd always have the memory of her slobbering, happy face... I can't remember what she looked like, Billy.
* Specifically its revealed that Grandpa Marsh has Alzheimer's disease.
-->'''Grandpa:''' She's just a baby after all.
-->'''Stan:''' She's not a baby, grandpa. She's 13.
-->'''Grandpa:''' Shelley's 13? ''...Right.''
* And then tears of happiness at the episode's end. [[spoiler:Stan gives his grandpa a framed picture of him and Patches, so he can remember.]]

[[AC:Jewpacrabra]]
* Cartman being chained and prepared for sacrifice.
** And then [[spoiler:'''fucking converting to Judaism''']] in the end. Anyone even remotely familiar with Cartman's, um, contentious opinions on the matter can imagine just how indescribably fucked up this is. And yet, the episode manages to pull it off with earnest heart.

[[AC:Butterballs]]
* Butters being bullied by his sadistic grandma.
** This is a very special case, because in this episode, the issue of child abuse and bullying is played very seriously. Especially things like her ''stabbing him with a fork under the table''. One of the most realistic portrayals of a child being abused mentally, physically and emotionally... on WesternAnimation/SouthPark.
* Though not as upsetting as Butters' much more severe abuse, seeing Mr. Mackey and Stan crying after being bullied can elicit real-life "aww"s.

[[AC:I Should Have Never Gone Ziplining]]
* The boys' DespairEventHorizon. I swear the whole scene in general was... I can't even describe it.
-->'''Stan:''' STOP IT! It was me. My idea.
-->'''Cartman:''' You?
-->'''Stan:''' 4 days ago, I came across a brochure for ziplining. I thought it would be fun, I only acted like it was an idea we came up with together.
-->(''Kyle and Cartman look at each other in shock'')
-->'''Kyle:''' So you intended for us to go? Why, Stan?
-->'''Stan:''' If you signed up 3 friends, you got a free iPod Nano.
-->(''The brochure reads: sign up 3 friends and get a free iPod Nano!'')
-->'''Kyle:''' You sold us out, for an iPod Nano?
-->'''Stan:''' I had no idea ziplining was so boring!
-->'''Cartman:''' You... You killed Kenny.
-->'''Kyle:''' You Bastard! You bastard, Stan!
-->(''Stan starts sobbing, cut to Kenny's dead body, and cut to the boys holding each other and crying'')

[[AC:Raising the Bar]]
* Cartman admits he's fat after Kyle tries to tell him at Wal-Mart at he is. Not absolutely heartbreaking, but this can be seen as rather emotional. (Until the last line of his speech, which veers into narmy territory because he apparently felt the need to pepper it with obligatory F-bombs.)
--> '''Cartman''': I've been doing a lot of thinking, about what you said at Wal-Mart. You're right, Kyle. I'm fat. All these years, you telling me, and me saying "No, I'm big-boned" or "no, that's just muscle"... It was always just me living in denial. I'm fucking fat, Kyle. I'm fucking fat as fucking fuck.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 17]]

[[AC:Ginger Cow]]
* Despite being [[CrowningMomentOfFunny hilarious]], Kyle pretending to [[ItMakesSenseInContext likes Cartman's farts so he won't cease peace in the Middle East]] is also kind of sad to watch as he cries (particularly when Stan confronts him), knowing Cartman has beaten him.
** And Stan, his best friend, misinterprets Kyle's suffering and accuses him of being a sanctimonious dick. Kyle is truly alone.
* When Stan is confronting Kyle about the latter's suffering, Kyle responds "I don't know." When he said that, it sounds like he's about to break down crying.
* [[spoiler: The ending of the episode.]]

[[AC:Titties and Dragons]]
* Cartman, of all people, [[spoiler:is absolutely crestfallen by Bill Gates brutally killing the president of Sony to win the meaningless victory of the console wars]]. He [[spoiler:manages to get an Xbox One, but can't find the effort to play it after what happened]].
* Stan and Kyle have an earlier moment that's heart-wrenching. After Stan gets framed and grounded (thanks to Cartman), Kyle tries to set things right, but ends up getting rejected. This is HarsherInHindsight when you realize in earlier episodes, it is usually Stan that goes through Hell just to fix any problems between him an Kyle, and in this sequence he finds himself unable to trust his best friend anymore. When he calls for his mother to get Kyle to leave, his voice cracks and rises, making the moment more heart-wrenching. [[spoiler: Luckily, Kyle fixes this and [[HeartwarmingMoments promises to get Stan a PS4.]]]]

[[AC:The Hobbit]]
* Wendy gives up her crusade on self-image after Kanye West guilt-trips her by reading a story of how Photoshop helps girls feel better, followed by her tearfully Photoshopping a picture of herself to look like a bombshell.
** And unlike ''You're Getting Old'' from Season 15, there was no follow-up episode to give this one closure, nor is it ever addressed again, leading one to believe that this is something she's keeping bottled up.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 18]]
[[AC:#REHASH]]
* After Lorde's (really [[spoiler:Randy's]]) disastrous concert, we're treated to a shot of Shelly crying. The look on Randy's face just screams [[spoiler:guilt for feeling like he let her down]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 19]]
[[AC:Stunning and Brave]]
* Cartman is beaten to a bloody pulp by the new PC Principal after trying to frame him for child molestation. When his friends visit him in the hospital to encourage him to come up with a way to get back at him, Cartman just lies there, [[VillainousBSOD admitting that political correctness has won]] and deciding that it's best for him to turn over a new leaf, starting with being nice to Kyle.
* Kyle's treatment by Randy and the PC frat boys for his opinions on Caitlyn Jenner, which include shaving him bald, drawing penises on his face and duct-taping him to a tree, before Kyle give in and calls Jenner a hero. It should hit hard for people who are often bullied for their opinions.

[[AC:The City Part of Town]]
* Jimmy Fallon mocks all of South Park after Mr. Garrison (mirroring Donald Trump's infamous campaign) decides to run for president. Every character is watching and feeling the burn. The sadness sets in when Randy - the biggest ManChild in town - just shuts off the TV and says ''"[[DudeNotFunny That's not funny]]"'' in a flat voice. The poor guy's spirit was crushed.
* Kenny's parents rather bluntly telling Karen they can't buy her anything because of how poor they are. It gets especially depressing when Mr. [=McCormick=] rubs it in that getting a job is worthless because the pay is pitiful.

[[AC:Safe Space]]
* Butters is faced with either working like a slave to filter the negative Internet comments celebrities and Cartman get to avoid feeling remotely hurt, or facing 2 weeks of detention and being grounded. He takes the former, and slowly (and justifiably) [[SanitySlippage begins losing his mind]] and then [[TakeAThirdOption tries to]] [[DrivenToSuicide kill himself.]] Think about that, he would rather kill himself than get grounded.
* The episode ends on a rather gloomy note, with Reality being hung in public.

[[AC:Tweek x Craig]]
* During the first montage, Mayor [=McDaniels=] looks at a framed photograph of a man and smiles while Peter Gabriel's "The Book of Love" plays. There is no mention of this moment until the second montage when we see that this person, whoever it is, has died. While this brief look into the mayor's personal life may have come from left field, it's surprisingly poignant when combined with A Great Big World's "Say Something". Considering how much she's had to deal with throughout season 19, let alone the events of the entire show, it seems that she finally couldn't hold it in any longer.

[[AC:Naughty Ninjas]]
* Barbrady is fired for accidentally shooting a Latino-American child in the shoulder because PC Principal called the cops to get rid of Leslie and we find out that he lives alone in a tiny poorly lit studio apartment with his old dog who is sick and needs medicine. They end up evicted and homeless after Barbrady tries and fails to get a new job. He then gets his job back to get rid of the kids playing ninja (The Mayor and other adults think they're part of [=ISIS=] because they're idiots) and when Randy tackles him while he's trying to plead with the kids not to be part of [=ISIS=], his gun fires and he accidentally shoots Daveed. They then fire him again and he ends up worse then when he started, despite the fact that [[NeverMyFault it was all Randy and the Mayor's idea]]. The whole episode is a TraumaCongaLine for him and it's just sad.
--> '''Barbrady:''' You know me, I like to help.

[[AC:Sponsored Content]]
* Despite what a royal JerkAss PC Principle is, his reaction to finding out [[spoiler: [[TomatoInTheMirror he is a sentient Ad]]]] is quite sad to see.
* Sharon trying to call Randy out on becoming a nitpicky PC bully is quite sad for anyone who's lost relationships with friends or loved ones because of conflicting political views. What clinches it is when Randy completely missed the point and just calls Sharon a bigot because she used gender-specific pronouns.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 20]]
[[AC:Skank Hunt]]
* After internet troll skankhunt42 becomes famous for harassing pretty much every woman on social media, the girls at South Park retaliate by [[spoiler: breaking up with all the boys '''permanently'''. Yes, even Wendy.]]
** [[spoiler: What's really heartbreaking is the reveal that a majority of the children were couples by the time this happened, yet the only attention they're given is at the very end of their relationships.]]
*** This becomes worse when you realize what this could mean for [[spoiler: Butter's relationship with Charlotte, if she knew about the troll or even felt the same way the girls did. She eventually finds out in ''Wiener Hunt'', and joins the South Park girls' protest by dumping Butters via Skype.]]
* The boys deciding to stop skankhunt42 by [[spoiler:luring Cartman into a cabin in the woods and destroying all of his devices]]. Cartman, who was excited about eating junk food and playing ''VideoGame/CounterStrike'', cries and begs them not to do it, but his pleas are ignored. His gut-wrenching screams as [[spoiler: his devices are destroyed]] are absolutely harrowing. What makes this worse is the fact that at this point, [[spoiler: [[DramaticIrony we know that Cartman really isn't skankhunt42]]]].
* Kyle, despite hating Cartman's guts, is still antsy about [[spoiler:destroying his gadgets]], and is [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone racked with guilt]] when it turns out [[spoiler:Cartman isn't skankhunt42]]. Even Clyde, who had the idea and says that every boys thought about doing it, is uneasy when Cartman starts begging.

[[AC:The Damned]]
* After one too many horrible trollings, Danish volleyball player and breast cancer survivor Freja Ollegard commits suicide.
* The look of [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone complete and utter horror]] on [[spoiler:Gerald's]] face when he sees that his idiotic new hobby can cause real harm.
** The people of Denmark mourning for Freja.
* Garrison's genuinely scared pleas for people to stop voting for him as he tries to sabotage his own campaign, yet all that happens is that he gains more support.

[[AC:Weiners Out]]
* Charlotte breaking up with [[BreakTheCutie Butters]], and [[StartOfDarkness his reactions]].
--> '''Charlotte''': Butters, I'm sorry, but I told you not to Skype me anymore, right?
--> '''Butters''': But baby, I love you! I need you! You can't break up with me!
--> '''Charlotte''': I have to stand with my girlfriends.
--> '''Butters''': Oh my god, I can't believe they got to you. [[SuddenlyShouting Those sneaky snakes in the grass]]!
--> '''Charlotte''': Who?
--> '''Butters''': Well you know who, [[InnocentlyInsensitive the girls in my school]]! They all broke up with their boyfriends and now they got you to go along with them!
--> '''Charlotte''': This is a time when women and girls have to stick together.
--> '''Butters''': [[StartOfDarkness So then it's true! You're all snakes in the grass! Every last one of you!]] (Charlotte hangs up) [[OhCrap Oh Charlotte]]? [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone Are you there? Honey?]]

[[AC:Douche and a Danish]]
* Garrison [[TraumaCongaLine fails to throw the election, gets lynched by his followers, tries to go back to teaching only to get dragged away by his advisors, and finally breaks down crying in the rain]].
* Heidi's reaction to her fundraiser failing.

[[AC:Oh Jeez]]
* Butters gets a visit from [[spoiler:Bill Clinton]], discussing the "Weiners Out" movement that had been happening for the past several episodes.
--> '''[[spoiler:Bill Clinton]]:''' What do you think you're gonna achieve, young man? Do you really think all this pickle-pressing is gonna get you anywhere?
--> '''Butters:''' Well, I'm just angry, [[spoiler: Mr. Gentleman]]. I'm tired of girls saying boys need to change. Somebody has to stand up for our rights!
--> '''[[spoiler:Bill Clinton]]:''' What happened, son? Did a girl break your heart?
--> '''Butters:''' (visibly tears up) ...[[BlatantLies No]].
* The very first scene of the episode has Randy looking at the election results, utterly shocked and bewildered, weakly whispering, "This wasn't supposed to happen..."

[[AC:The End Of Serialization As We Know It]]
* [[spoiler: [[BittersweetEnding The fact that while Troll Trace is gone]], the Member Berries still have their spot in the White House with a still out-of-control President Garrison. Gerald [[KarmaHoudini got away with everything]], except now, it is likely that [[BrokenPedestal Kyle and Ike have lost all respect for their dad, being the only ones who know the truth]]. The gender wars at school are also likely to continue for the indefinite future now that no one will ever find out who skankhunt42 really was, though there is a spark of hope, since Kyle can expose Gerald at any time. Oh, and Cartman may be reverting back to his old ways without Heidi knowing.]]
* This conversation.
--> '''Gerald''': I can't argue with you anymore. I want to say that we're different, but it's not true. All we've been doing is just making excuses for being terrible people.
--> '''Lennart''': (looks down, internally agreeing with him)
--> '''Gerald''': I look at you and all I see is a big fat reflection of myself.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Season 21]]
[[AC:White People Renovating Houses]]
* Basically everything during the Cartman/Heidi subplot, but especially [[spoiler: when [[ShipSinking Cartman breaks up with her]] because he managed to convince himself she's abusing him when it was actually the other way around. You'll want to give Heidi such a hug after what she went through.]]
* [[spoiler: While Heidi is definitely TheWoobie throughout, there is still an amount of tearjerker in Cartman when we get a small clip of his brain turning perfectly reasonable statements from Heidi into actual abuse. Yes, he doesn't want a mutual relationship as much as he wants subservience, but seeing him ruin his own chances at happiness due to his own mental issues and his inability to realize them is still sad to see.]]

[[AC:Put It Down]]
* Heidi being stuck as Cartman's girlfriend because he keeps threatening suicide. And the reason Cartman is doing this? His crippling need for constant attention.
* The car accident in the middle of the episode, it was even regarded as such InUniverse
* Tweek's constant breakdowns are incredibly hard to watch, especially since [[spoiler: North Korea is explicitly targeting ''him.'' Just because his teacher-turned-president shit-talked him on Twitter.]]

[[AC:Doubling Down]]
* Heidi is at her lowest, and eventually she did break up with Cartman. Unfortunately, when she is with her friends, [[spoiler: the girls make fun [[NoSympathy of her]] [[IToldYouSo for being with him.]] She then goes back to Cartman and gets manipulated even more into thinking what he is thinking. She says that it's her fault for being an Irish girl and that she can't trust Kyle because he is a Jew. The next episode shows that she has become a female version of Cartman.]]

[[AC: Super Hard PCness]]
* Kyle has been so utterly broken by the past season's events (losing Heidi back to Cartman and seeing her become an even worse version of him, and being continually mocked and rebuked by his friends for his social concerns) that he finally snaps and embarks on an increasingly fanatical crusade to censor Terrance and Phillip, desperately trying to convince everyone (and himself) that it is the cause of everyone becoming spiteful assholes in his school and society. Not only has he become the very thing he was fighting way back in [[WesternAnimation/SouthParkBiggerLongerAndUncut the movie]] (i.e his mother) but he only realises how far he has gone and how much damage he has caused [[spoiler: when he witnesses President Garrison be inspired by his words to start a nuclear war with Canada]].

[[AC: Splatty Tomato]]
* While walking with the others to find Ike, Heidi reminisces on where she quit social media, and where Cartman was ejected from it, both times remembering how they started out so well. [[spoiler: Then they get to the nadir of the relationship, the woods where Cartman abandoned Heidi, and the remainder of the episode she slowly realizes how much he's changed back from the doting boyfriend he was last year, into a narcissistic abusive sociopath. It culminates in Heidi taking Mr. White's gun, and going from trying to kill him, to herself, to him taking the gun and bluffing suicide once more, all as she breaks up with him once more. Here, it gets worse: she finally admits to herself about how they both have become worse, and admits to herself she needed to leave him because both could only see themselves as a victim.]]
* Ike is not pleased with Kyle for what happened last episode. And the death toll from that is within the millions, to boot, which hurts Kyle more than before. And then he goes missing, which scares Kyle even more. The poor boy still can't catch a break.
[[/folder]]