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Cheer Up Episode

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One character is down in the dumps for whatever reason. One or more other characters take note of this and go out of their way to help the depressed character out. Sometimes this interference helps, but often only succeeds in frustrating the person further or worsening the situation in some way.

Compare to Must Make Her Laugh, where someone (usually the Plucky Comic Relief) tries to alleviate the atmosphere for a perpetually moody person (usually the Emotionless Girl). In a more serialized show, a Cheer Up Episode can be used to address a particularly bad Heroic BSoD or bring someone back from a Despair Event Horizon.

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Examples

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    Anime & Manga 
  • In My Hero Academia, Eri has forgotten how to smile due to her Dark and Troubled Past. Because of this, Izuku and Mirio make it their mission to use the upcoming U.A. Culture Festival to get her to smile again.

    Asian Animation 
  • In Season 8 episode 14 of Happy Heroes, Big M. loses his confidence and undergoes depression after learning that a dim-witted former classmate of his has become a successful planet conqueror before he could do so. Big M.'s assistant Little M. spends the episode trying to find ways to bring him back to normal.

    Literature 
  • The Mr. Men series has a few:
    • Mr. Happy's own book has him finding a person who looks like him but is the exact opposite and thus tries to teach him how to be happy.
    • Little Miss Sunshine's story has her try and help the king of Miseryland be happier.
  • In "Eeyore, Be Happy!", a Winnie-the-Pooh book, Tigger believes that an earthquake is coming to the Hundred-Acre Wood after hearing it from Eeyore, which also results in Pooh and Piglet missing lunch at Rabbit's house. When Christopher Robin finds out, he tells Tigger, Pooh, and Piglet that Eeyore is just being gloomy again. When Eeyore tells his friends that no one ever taught him to be happy, the others try various ways to make Eeyore happy. Tigger tries bouncing, Pooh tries getting honey from the honey tree, and Piglet tries house painting, but none of their attempts make Eeyore happy. In the end, Eeyore decides that he likes being gloomy the best, because trying to be happy was too much work for him.
  • "Christmas Toys" is a book based on Toy Story. Andy goes on a Christmas vacation but isn't allowed to bring any toys, which leads to Woody getting upset over being left behind and missing Andy. Buzz and the other toys work together to give Woody a merry Christmas, with a Christmas tree made of cotton balls, Wheezy singing Christmas carols, Bo Peep reading a Christmas story, Buzz performing a light show, and Rex and RC giving out presents. Woody is happy to spend Christmas with his friends and wishes them all a merry Christmas.
  • In the Framing Device of one of Joel Harris's Uncle Remus stories, little Joel is feeling sad and Uncle Remus proceeds to tell him about Br'er Rabbit's funniest trick (where Br'er Rabbit convinces Br'er Fox that money can be found under rolling cartwheels).
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    Live-Action TV 
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine, "Windbreaker City": Jake is heartbroken over his break-up with Sophia, but he cheers up when the squad is invited to a Homeland Security terrorist training simulation. His colleagues and friends help him enjoy himself — they are assigned roles of victims, but they go rogue.
  • A number of Friends episodes have this kind of plot. Examples include:
    • The very first episode, where Ross discovers his now ex-wife swung for the same team, so Joey and Chandler console him about it. Meanwhile, Rachel has this and a Welcome Episode combined, having run out on her wedding and being cut off financially, leaving Monica to support her during her time of need.
    • "The One with George Stephanopoulos": Joey and Chandler invite Ross to a hockey game to help him get over his marital problems.
  • In the It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia episode "The Gang Broke Dee", the Butt-Monkey status that Dee has in the gang is deconstructed to its natural conclusion as the episode starts with Dee having reached the Despair Event Horizon, eating "trash-cake", smoking and correctly guessing the gang's insults before they give it. Feeling guilty (and not finding it fun to insult her if she doesn't fight back) they try and cheer her up by being willing to laugh at her stand-up. She is quickly cheered-up when people actually find her funny. That is, until it is revealed that Frank payed off the audience to laugh.
  • Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide:
    • In "Guide To Boys", Ned is so depressed about Suzy leaving that he gets a horrible case of writer's block. To fix this, his friends whisk him away for a "men's" day, and eventually show him a dramatic recreation of the formation of the guide, in an effort to get his passion back.
    • "Guide to Positives and Negatives" has Ned trying to make Mark Downer, the school's new pessimistic and gloomy student, happy. All attempts fail, until he sets Mark up on a date with the equally negative Goth, Sarah.
  • Parks and Recreation:
    • In "Pawnee Rangers", also called 'treat yo self' episode: Donna and Tom notice that Ben is sad and they invite him to join their Treat Yo Self Day (self-care plus shopping spree and indulging yourself in every imaginable way). Ben is unable to enjoy himself but opens up after buying and wearing a Batman costume. He breaks down crying and admits he's depressed because he can't deal with his break-up with Leslie.
    • In the episode "Correspondents' Lunch", Andy is depressed after failing the police exam. Ben is at his job trying to decide what charity to support, and April tries to engage Andy in helping Ben pick a charity. When Ben doesn't choose the charity Andy picked, April explains to Ben that he should pick Andy's charity because Andy needs cheering up.
  • In the Seinfeld episode "The Stand-in", Jerry's subplot revolves around making a hospitalized friend, Fulton, laugh at one of his routines. His acts fall flat throughout most of the episode, but at the end, he finally gets one to make Fulton laugh...to death.
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine had a couple of plots like this:
    • The subplot of "A Man Alone" involved Chief O'Brien trying to cheer up his wife Keiko, who was bored and depressed as she had nothing to do on the station, and eventually had her open a schoolroom for the children living aboard.
    • The main plot of "In The Cards" involved Jake (and a reluctant Nog) trying to get a vintage 1951 Willie Mays rookie card for Captain Sisko to take his mind off the looming Dominion War for a little bit. Thanks to a Chain of Deals to get the card (and some bumbling that nearly gets them killed by the Dominion) they end up cheering up most of the senior staff as well.
  • Victorious: The episode "Tori Tortures Teacher'' is about Tori trying to cheer up Mr. Sikowitz after he feels under appreciated by the school. She decides to take him to a play. Unfortunately, that play is about a teacher who's stuck in a dead end job, making things worse for Sikowitz.

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    Western Animation 
  • In the Charlie and Lola episode "I'm Really Ever So Not Well", Lola has a cold which makes her very grumpy, so Charlie tries to cheer her up. When he invites her to sing, she doesn't want to because her throat is sore, when he gives her pink milk, she thinks it tastes weird because of her blocked nosenote , when he gives her food, she claims she's lost her appetite, and when he sings "If You're Happy and You Know It", she just says, "I'm not happy". A puzzle almost works, but it has a piece missing.
  • In Craig of the Creek, Kelsey has a bad day that she doesn't want to talk about on the same day the main trio meets Sparkle Cadet, an extremely cheerful kid who acts like a Magical Girl Warrior. Sparkle Cadet is trying to defeat the Anti-Sparkle that brings negativity into the world. The kids first think is a tree, but later Kelsey realizes her bad mood is the Anti-Sparkle. She's able to overcome it by talking out her problems with her friends.
  • One episode of Dora the Explorer has Dora and Boots trying to make the Grumpy Old Troll less grumpy so that he'll do his "thank-you dance".
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy: In "Little Ed Blue", Ed is in an uncharacteristically bad mood, so the other two Ed's try to help see what's the problem (mostly Edd, Eddy really isn't concerned). This only gets both Ed's hurt multiple times. Eventually, it's revealed that the source of Ed's anger was a rock in his shoe, and Ed's back to his normal self once that's dealt with.
  • The Loud House
    • Subverted in "Back Out There". Clyde, Liam, Rusty, and Zach worry that Lincoln might be hung up on Ronnie Anne moving after seeing him recurrently stop by her former house and try helping him get his mind off her while being discrete about it. This cumulates in booking him for a vacation, at which point the friends tell Lincoln why they did what they did. Lincoln tries to tell his friends that he isn't hung up on Ronnie Ann, but they think he's in denial and shove him on the bus to the destination. Ronnie Ann herself calls right after and confirms that Lincoln really wasn't depressed about her departure; the real reason he stopped by her house all the time was to get a package she sent for him there.
    • Zigzagged in "The Crying Dame"; Lily will not stop crying even though her older siblings have tried everything else, so Lori gives her Fenton The Feel-Better Fox, a singing and dancing fox toy that she played with when she was a baby. This works, but a little too well, as Lily will not stop playing the song, annoying her older siblings and parents for three straight days. Lily's older siblings take Fenton to the garbage dump during a diaper change, but as a result, this leaves Lily depressed. Her older siblings try everything they can to cheer Lily up, but the only thing that will work is bringing Fenton back. They try to do so, but Fenton gets crushed into a cube. In the end, Lincoln dresses up as Fenton and he and his sisters sing Fenton's song, which makes Lily happy again.
  • An episode of the Mr. Men 1990s cartoon has Mr. Happy fall into a depression when he finds out that Little Miss Greedy, Mr. Jelly and Little Miss Neat were all upset on what should've been a lovely day. Mr. Small notices this and, taking the advice of Dr. Makeyouwell, gets the other Mr. Men and Little Miss to go round to his house and give him a smile.
  • In the Muppet Babies (2018) episode, "Upside Down Day", Summer Penguin feels sad because many bad things have happened to her; spilling her cereal at breakfast, losing her crayons, stubbing her flipper, and missing hearing her favorite story, Seymour the Baby Seal. Gonzo diagnoses Summer as having "bad-day-itis", and tries to cure her by turning the playroom upside down, so that her frown will be as upside down as the playroom is, turning it into a smile.
  • In the My Friends Tigger & Pooh episode "Pooh's Bad-ful Day", Winnie the Pooh has a bad day, so his friends create a good day the next day.
  • The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh: In "Donkey for a Day", Eeyore's friends notice his habit of going off alone to mope and try increasingly zany schemes to cheer him up, which mostly end up inconveniencing and/or hurting him. Eeyore eventually explains that he's actually quite content and appreciates his friends' concern for him, then welcomes them all to watch a beautiful sunset together.
  • In the Phineas and Ferb episode "Cheer up Candace", Candace is feeling depressed because she thinks her boyfriend, Jeremy, broke up with her and the A-plot of the episode is about Phineas and Ferb trying to cheer her up.
  • Popeye: In "I Like Babies and Infinks", Popeye and Bluto compete over who can make a crying Swee'Pea laugh. Naturally, they end up brawling, and Popeye reaches for his spinach, but he opens a can of onions by mistake. The fumes give him, Bluto and Olive Onion Tears, and it's the sight of all three crying like babies that makes Swee'Pea laugh.
  • In an episode of The Powerpuff Girls (2016), Bubbles ("the joy and the laughter" of the group) is uncharacteristically depressed. Her sisters try to find the root of her trouble, from thinking it's an evil plot by Mojo Jojo, to blaming themselves for any arguments they had in the past. Eventually the professor teaches them its okay for people to be sad sometimes and not articulate a reason, and being there is enough without trying to "fix" the sad person.
  • The penultimate episode of Regular Show, "Cheer Up, Pops", has Pops distressed about going into battle to save the universe, so the rest of the park staff attempt to help him.
  • The Ren & Stimpy Show episode "Stimpy's Invention" does a demented take on this trope. Noting how Ren is always in a violently upset disposition, Stimpy creates the Happy Helmet, a machine that forces whoever wears it to become happy, and puts in on Ren. Ren is left struggling to fight the helmets influence through the duration of the episode, and finally succeeds in overcoming it towards the end by smashing it with a hammer multiple times. Back to normal, a livid Ren strangles Stimpy for all his troubles, only to realize something; Anger brings him happiness!
  • In an episode of Sarah & Duck, the titular characters try to cheer up a donkey, who they eventually learn isn't really sad.
  • The animated Sesame Street song "The Alligator King" has the seven princes trying to cheer their dad up.
  • South Park: In "Raisins", Stan falls into a depression after Wendy breaks up with him, so his friends try to show him there's other girls out there by taking him to the titular restaurant. This only makes Stan feel worse, and he ends up joining the Goth Kids. Eventually, he leaves the Goth Kids when they see Butters crying over feeling dumped by one of the Raisins girls and asks him to join them, only for Butters to call them out for hating life since he'd rather love his life and look on the positive sides of it than hate his life and be a "faggy Goth Kid". This gets through to Stan, since he also prefers to love his life more than hate it.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants
    • In "Jellyfishing", Squidward rejects SpongeBob and Patrick's invite to join them in the titular sport. After a devastating bike accident off a cliff, Squidward returns home wrapped in a full body cast and confined to an electric wheelchair. SpongeBob and Patrick attempt to give the reluctant Squidward the "best day ever" which included jellyfishing which just made Squidward's day go from bad to worse.
    • In the episode "Texas", Sandy becomes homesick for her home state, prompting Spongebob and Patrick to gather many of Bikini Bottom's residents to have a party to make her feel at home.
    • In the infamous episode "Are You Happy Now", Squidward reveals that he has never had a happiest memory, so Spongebob takes it upon himself to make one for the Squid. None of his attempts work, and instead Squidward is sent into a seemingly suicidal depression. Spongebob's last attempt is to make a party full of Spongebob mannequins, which gets Squidward to admit that he doesn't want a happiest memory, only to make one anyway by mauling the mannequins.
  • Star vs. the Forces of Evil: The appropriately titled episode, "Cheer Up, Star", has Star down in the dumps. Marco takes it upon himself to make her feel better, noting that's what she would usually do for him.
  • Theodore Tugboat: In "Foduck's Hurt Feelings", Foduck accidentally sprays The Dispatcher with his fire hose while trying to spray Theodore, causing The Dispatcher to yell at him. This makes Foduck think that The Dispatcher doesn't like him anymore, and he runs away to a gloomy cove. Theodore tries to cheer Foduck up by telling him to spray him, but Foduck tells him that was what got him in trouble in the first place. Theodore eventually manages to cheer Foduck up when he helps him clean up some barrels that spilled into the water, as well as tell him they can still be friends even if he did yell at him. The Dispatcher also apologizes to Foduck and tells him he will always like him no matter what.
  • Young Justice: Downplayed in "Disordered", as Black Canary helps the entire team deal with the trauma the events of the previous episode "Failsafe" left them. However, Superboy leaves the session early and instead spends most of the episode aiding a group of The Forever People recover their stolen tech and dismantle Desaad's (one of Darkseid's minions) scheme to take over the Infinity Man. It's only at the end of the episode that Superboy returns and admits to Black Canary that while pulling his Heroic Sacrifice in "Failsafe", he was at peace with himself, and was too ashamed to admit it before.

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