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Tear Jerker / Black-ish

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  • Dre and Pops taking what may be their last walk together before Pops has an operation, scored with "I'll Be Missing You."
  • Charlie leaving at the end of "Men at Work".
  • The entire episode "Hope", in which the family discusses the huge amount of police violence against black people. The episode pulls no punches with several real cases being discussed, and climaxing with Dre's speech about every black person's fear that Obama would be assassinated as he took his first walk to the White House.
    "Oh, so you want to talk about hope, Bow? OBAMA ran on hope. Remember when he got elected, and we felt like maybe, just MAYBE, we got out of that bad place and made it to a good place? That the whole country was really ready to turn the corner? [Beat] ...Do you remember that amazing feeling we had during the inauguration? I was sitting right next to you, and we were so proud. Then we saw him get out of that limo and walk alongside of it and wave to that crowd. Tell me you weren't TERRIFIED when you saw that. Tell me that you weren't worried that someone was going to SNATCH that hope away from us like they always do. THAT...[Beat] the real world, Bow, and our children need to know that that's the world they live in."
    • Earlier, Zoey breaks down when Junior says he wants to go join the riots, fearing for her brother's life.
  • Bow's miscarriage scare when a sonogram takes an unnervingly long time to find her baby's heartbeat.
  • The entirety of the episode, "Lemons", which deals with the aftermath of the 2016 US Presidential Election.
    • When Dre and his coworkers find out Lucy voted for Trump, they are disgusted with her and criticize her for it. Then, when she tells them why she voted for him, Dre, at least, is sympathetic and realizes that maybe Trump didn't win just because he appealed to some bigots.
    "I'm not some crazy right-wing nut, you guys. I voted for Obama twice. I even got my Republican parents to vote for him. He felt different. I believed he was gonna change stuff... But it's eight years later, and my dad's still out of work, my hometown's about to go under, and Hillary comes out saying she's basically gonna keep everything the same. I'm sorry, but that doesn't work for me or my family."
    • And then there is Dre's heart-wrenching speech to his coworkers about why he has been largely silent during all of their post-election hand wringing (with Nina Simone's "Strange Fruit" playing in the background).
    "You don't think I care about this country? I love this country, even though at times it doesn't love me back. For my whole life, my parents, my grandparents, me — for most black people, this system has never worked for us. But we still play ball, try to do our best to live by the rules even though we knew they would never work out in our favors. Had to live in neighborhoods that you wouldn't drive through; send our kids to school with books so beat up you couldn't read them; worked jobs that you wouldn't even consider in your nightmares. Black people wake up every day believing that our lives are going to change, even though everything around us says it's not. Truth be told, you ask most black people and they'd tell you that no matter who won this election, they didn't expect the hood to get better. But they still voted, because that's what you're supposed to do. You don't think I'm sad that Hillary didn't win? That I'm not terrified about what Trump's about to do? I'm used to things not going my way. I'm sorry that you're not and it's blowing your mind, but excuse me if I get a little offended that I didn't see all of this outrage when everything was happening to all of my people since we were stuffed on boats in chains. I love this country as much if not more than you do, and don't you ever forget that."
    • And (combined with heartwarming) later on, Junior giving MLK's "I Have a Dream" speech whilst Dre gives an internal monologue about all the things he is glad that his children grew up seeing - Beyonce and Jay Z be treated like royalty, a black family in the White House, a woman almost win the presidency - and how he still has hope for the future.
  • "Sprinkles" accurately captures the fear of possibly losing both your newborn child and wife at once. Dre's usual comical breakdown is replaced with a genuine one, and it's a gut-wrencher.
  • "53%". Which shows Dre and Bow's marriage crumbling. Even after Devonte taking his first steps briefly calms things, the fighting resumes, hinting their marriage may be over.
  • "Blue Valentime" continues the story: Dre and Bow are so broken at this point that the kitchen remodel they had been so excited about spirals into days fluctuating between cold silence and horrible screaming matches, all interspersed with flashbacks to the early, happier days of their marriage. Adding to this is the cold, grey-blue filter over the present scenes are shot in, with that show's normal sunny color scheme for the flashbacks. The clincher, however, is the use of two of Coldplay's saddest songs, "The Scientist" and "Fix You" playing over the flashback to Bow's pregnancy with the twins and Dre moving out of the house respectively.
    Dre: How the hell did we get here?
    Bow: (breaking into tears) I don't know...
    • Which immediately becomes an Ironic Echo when we see the day they moved into the house with a young Zoey and Junior, as we see the happy couple standing in the same position, repeating the same words. Damn.
  • "Nesting" is another sad follow-up to the arc: Andre and Bow decide to start nesting in order to keep the kids happy. They snipe at each other all throughout the episode, but it looks like they'll pull it together after Junior's heartwarming valedictorian speech....until later that evening when they start arguing in front of the kids. Junior is angry and feels lied to and throws his watch (his graduation present) out the door. Jack stars crying and runs from the room and even Diane of all people starts crying in disbelief. After realizing they fought in front of the kids, Andre and Bow make the decision to separate and start the divorce process.
  • "Dream Home" sees Andre and Bow finally start to work on the marriage and they get back together, but it's bittersweet. The act that drives them together is Bow's father passing away. Bow calls Andrew in the middle of the night completely distraught and Andre rushes over to comfort her and it's from there that their relationship is mended.
    • Bow's reaction to her father dying is heartbreaking, she can only repeat the same words over and over again, all the while sobbing her heart out. Her actress puts on an incredible performance.
  • "Black Like Us" had Diane talking to her family about what it's like to be the only dark-skinned person in the family and what it's like to be a dark-skinned girl out in the world where she is aware that "lighter is better", she cannot wear bold red lipstick, she's beautiful "for a dark skinned girl", and she just wants to be normal. Hits home for anyone who hasn't fit in with their society's standard of beauty or has dealt with colorism on a personal level.
    • The argument that starts after Junior and Bow point out that they get ribbed on for their light skin by Dre and Ruby (who dismiss it all as "just jokes")and at some point Ruby confesses her lighter-skinned family actually made her stay in the backyard while the other kids were allowed to play in the front yard. She even said her light-skinned maternal family treated her father cruelly for being dark.

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