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Tear Jerker / Bob's Burgers

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Besides its comedy, Bob's Burgers is known for the genuinely heartwarming moments between its characters. However, to say it's incapable of showcasing moments on the other end of the emotional wheel is a bold-faced lie.

As a Moments subpage, all spoilers are unmarked as per policy. You Have Been Warned.

Season 1

  • As funny as it is to see Teddy's No-Holds-Barred Beatdown against the mascots in "Bed and Breakfast", it's also sad in a sense, considering every second he sees of them reminds him of arguably the most traumatic moment in his life (when his wife cheated on him with a seal mascot that looked him straight in the eyes as it happened). Special mention to after he finally tires out, when he curls up on the ground and starts sobbing uncontrollably. Poor guy needs a hug.
  • Louise admitting that she only wanted to spend time with Bob and Gene again in "Spaghetti Western and Meatballs", coupled with her outright crying for the first time in the series. Learning about his daughter's true motives make Bob go from annoyed with her antics to extremely apologetic in less than a second.

Season 2

  • In "Bob Day Afternoon", a bank robber across the street takes in hostages and orders burgers from the restaurant as one of his demands. When the robber wants Bob to deliver the burgers himself, Linda and the kids are so terrified that they cling to him and plead with him not to go.
    • Throughout the entire hostage crisis, it's clear that Linda thinks Bob isn't going to make it out alive. While her comments on the news aren't played too seriously, one can't help but feel bad for her.

Season 3

  • Teddy freaking out when he discovers his guinea pig got crushed to death in "Full Bars". He becomes so emotionally distraught over it that he stops his Halloween party and doesn't let anyone out until he finds out who killed her.
  • Bob's flashback of his shitty childhood in "Bob Fires The Kids".
  • While Bob and Louise's relationship is genuinely heartwarming and the two have a great bond, "Mother Daughter Laser Razor" shows that Louise's relationship with Linda has suffered in comparison, and Linda is painfully aware that Louise is a Daddy's Girl. This line from Linda really lets it set in:
    Linda: I just wish you liked me, is all.
    • The opening of the episode doesn't help — Louise is genuinely having fun goofing off with her siblings and Bob, only to stop enjoying herself when Linda shows up. Moreover, Louise refers to "Dad-ing things up" as a good thing, but refers to "Mom-ing things up" as a bad thing. It's one thing for Linda to know she's not Louise's favorite parent, but having to experience the confirmation firsthand is another.
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  • The Belcher family and the Science Fair audience freaking out in "Topsy" when it looks like Tina was electrocuted by Louise's project. Bob and Linda rush to Tina's side, hysterically calling her name while Bob cradles her body, Louise is horrified that she may have accidentally killed her sister, Gene looks and sounds like he's on the verge of tears as he helplessly whispers Tina's name, and the audience can only stare in horror. For a brief but all-too-tense time, they thought they saw Tina die in front of them. It's hard to blame everybody for being so relieved when it turns out Tina was just acting.
  • In "Boyz 4 Now", Louise makes several attempts to get backstage, but is kept out by a bouncer. He's big and tough, but what ultimately stops Louise is the bouncer saying that he understands her pain, and tells her to enjoy her youth while she can, because that pain will only get worse with age. Geez, dude...
  • Rudy's asthma attack in "Carpe Museum" is already terrifying, but it gets a lot worse considering each person's perspective of it. From Rudy's perspective, he's willing to ignore it just to feel included in Bob and Louise's escapade, painting a depressing picture about how Rudy never really felt like he belonged before then. From Louise's perspective, she feels like she could've done something about it if she'd just known, and actually asks Rudy why he didn't warn her—she may have wanted adventure, but she didn't want someone to risk their life for it. And from Bob's perspective, he has to watch as a kid his own daughter's age suffers from a potentially-fatal asthma attack while he's helpless to do anything—one has to wonder if Bob outright imagined Louise in Rudy's position for a brief moment.

Season 4

  • Louise breaking down and admitting that she's afraid to get her cavity filled in "The Kids Run Away" is pretty heartbreaking.
  • "World Wharf II: The Wharfening" has a lot of these.
    • Pretty much everything about "Bad Things Are Bad". Particular highlights include:
      • Bob lamenting on how he's going to die alone by drowning under a pier, leaving behind a wife and three kids who will have to grow up without him. While the rest of the song and pretty much the entire series is comprised of genuinely saddening moments, that in particular is pretty darn depressing.
      • Linda's situation is so dire that even Jimmy Pesto seems to feel bad for her. At the very least, he doesn't try to insult Bob like he usually does.
      • Teddy's scene. The man he considers his best friend is missing, and for all he knows he's dead. One really can't blame him for breaking down at the end.
      • Additionally, look at the kids' faces during their respective scenes. They hold it in pretty well, but it's pretty clear that they're just as terrified as Linda and Teddy that Bob might not be making it out of this one. And the fact that none of the townsfolk can give a decent clue as to Bob's location (or, in the case of Jimmy Jr., they can't even be bothered to offer any clues) doesn't help.
      • The music itself. The piano that plays during the final verse is downright haunting.
    • The scene where Fanny takes Felix's gun and threatens the Belchers and Fischoeders is already Nightmare Fuel, but it gets even worse when one considers Bob's perspective. He already thought he was going to die, but now he's faced with an even worse prospect—having to watch his family, including his three young children, die with him, while he's tied up and unable to help them.
    • The Belchers thinking they really are going to die. Faced with near-certain death, they do the one thing they can—tell each other that they love them with complete sincerity. It makes their survival ten times more relieving, but in the moment it's hard not to feel like this really is it for them.

Season 5

  • Teddy being upset and actually shedding tears after accidentally hearing Bob telling he's not his best friend in "Friends with Burger-fits". Thankfully, Bob does admit at the end that he really is his best friend.
    • Along with that, Bob worrying that his burgers might kill Teddy, and even having a nightmare about it. Whatever he may think about his relationship with Teddy, Bob clearly feels responsible for his current predicament.
  • In "Dawn of the Peck", Bob is hurt when he learns that his family won't be spending Thanksgiving with him this year.
    Louise: He's taking this pretty well.
    Bob: (as he's wiping a tear off his eye) No, you're crying!
  • In "Best Burger", Gene learns that the entire family views him as The Load when it comes to accomplishing an important task, and his half of the episode is devoted towards his belief that he really deserves that status. It's sad to see the outgoing, happy-go-lucky Gene we've gotten to know and love so hard on himself, as if his energetic attitude is a cover for deep self-esteem issues.
    Gene: I'm sorry I screwed up today! I'm sorry I screw up all the time!
    • Additionally, Bob's realization that he expects Gene to fail to deliver the black garlic and subconsciously hopes he does just so he can have an excuse for losing the titular competition. Bob is clearly horrified at himself for thinking so low about his son (though it fortunately leads to a moment where he reassures Gene that in spite of his failures, he's nothing less than amazing).
  • "Father of the Bob" shows a flashback of Bob genuinely proud of his first unique creation—the "Baby You Can Chive My Car" burger—and his father angrily rebuffing it because it's not "the usual". There's also the nasty falling out the two had when Big Bob tried to make Bob his official business partner, and while the two have talked since then it's clear that neither of them have truly recovered since that one Christmas.
    • Bob's relationship with his father has gotten so strenuous that he can only handle fifteen minutes around him before leaving. It's difficult to imagine any of Bob's own kids ever getting to that point with him, and the implication is that Bob himself is desperate to avoid his relationships with Tina, Gene, and Louise ever sinking that low.
    • The ending gives Bob's father one hell of a Freudian Excuse—as he talks with Bob, we learn that his wife died when Bob was young, and he tried his best to raise Bob as a single parent. Not only did he not do a good job, but we learn that he is painfully aware he didn't do a good job. As he tries to make amends with his son, it's clear that his past mistakes are still eating him alive.
      • The ending just makes the strained relationship between Bob and Big Bob even more upsetting. Big Bob wants to make amends, he wants to apologize for everything he's done. But Bob wants nothing to do with him, and has all but cut him out of his life. And the worst part is that one can't blame Bob—as genuine as Big Bob is in wanting to patch things up, the fact remains that he drove his son away in the first place, and Big Bob knows it.
  • In "Hawk and Chick", the title father/daughter duo have not talked to each other in thirty years, and are not on good terms. This is already sad enough considering how close they were back when they did talk, but Bob and Louise's attempts to reunite them reveal even more tearjerking moments:
    • The fact that Koji, the titular "Hawk", blames himself for losing contact with his daughter. Even just watching one of their old movies is enough to get him to tear up. Arguably worse is the fact that he's right—everything we see and hear in the episode indicates that Koji was the reason the two splitnote . From there, it's a similar scenario to Bob and Big Bob—in both cases, the parent knows he's made mistakes and wants to make amends, but his child wants nothing to do with him and refuses to give him a second chance—and as sympathetic as the parent is, one can't blame the child for cutting off contact.
    • When Bob learns that Yuki has no intent on reuniting with her father, he considers just cancelling the planned reunion. It's not directly statednote , but after one considers Bob's subpar relationship with his own father, it's clear Bob doesn't want to force a reunion that he knows from experience might be better off not happening.
      • It gets even sadder from Louise's perspective. She has a much better relationship with Bob than Bob did with Big Bob, which is of course a good thing, but it also means that she can't see things from her father's point of view. She has no idea why Bob has suddenly changed his mind regarding the reunion, leading to a brief spark of conflict between the two regarding his sudden 180 in terms of goals. Louise is usually very smart for her age, but this is a very sobering reminder that she's still a child who doesn't always understand the complex world around her.
      • Additionally, the deleted scene makes it clear that even after the two made amends, Bob still has a largely negative view of his father. While it'd be a tall order for one night of reconciliation to wash away all the bad blood between the two, it's still sad to see that Bob and Big Bob are still not on great terms.
    • Even as Louise mocks her father, she can't imagine working with him as anything other than fun, meaning she's genuinely disheartened to learn that Yuki doesn't think the same about her own father. She actually gets mad at Yuki about it, and one can't help but feel like she's undergoing a case of Broken Pedestal regarding someone she once wanted to be like.
    • The end of the episode reveals just why Louise is so persistent on reuniting Koji and Yuki—she's worried that when she grows up, she could possibly drift apart from Bob like Yuki drifted apart from Koji. She doesn't want to see Koji and Yuki remain separated because it's a reflection of her biggest fear. It fortunately leads to an incredibly heartwarming moment where Bob reassures her that they will never grow apart, but her fear in that moment is palpable.
      • If that's not enough, listen closely as Louise talks. She sounds like she's about to cry.
      • The music that plays during this scene doesn't help, either.
      • This revelation also recontextualizes Louise's anger at Yuki. She sides with Koji not just because she blames Yuki for the separation, but because she can't imagine the father being to blame for a father-daughter split. She feels like if she and Bob do grow apart, she'd have nobody to blame but herself.

Season 6

  • Tina's story of what would happen if Bob met Linda and he didn't have a mustache in "Sliding Bobs". Hugo marries Linda, have three Habercore kids (who are twisted, backwards versions of the Belcher kids we know and love), and Bob becomes a health inspector. Special mention to the scene where the Alternate Universe Bob and Linda talk alone, showing that they know something got derailed years ago and can't figure out what.
  • As funny as it is to think about how Mr. Business hates the sound of Gayle's voice in "Gayle Makin' Bob Sled", when you think about the cat's situation it's actually pretty sad. One day Mr. Business (which is likely not even his real name) was just an ordinary cat who lived with his owners, only for this emotionally unstable lady to take him off of his porch and claim him as her new cat. When you consider how Gayle takes pretty abysmal care of her current cats and 'cares' for Mr. Business in the same way, the poor cat's story is actually pretty tragic given that he could have had a comfortable life before Gayle basically stole him from his home.
  • Louise's moment of clarity and self-loathing in "Nice-capades" when she realizes if she was actually a nice person, she wouldn't need to put on a show about it.
  • Gene breaking up with Courtney in "The Gene and Courtney Show", as their relationship is negatively affecting their performance during their morning announcements. Even Courtney's father Doug, who at first was suspicious of him after the events of "The Unbearable Like-Likeness of Gene", feels sorry for him.
    • The breakup scene gets even worse—Gene fully intended to throw away his performance to continue dating Courtney, and it's not until Courtney herself chooses the show that he cuts himself off and picks the show as well. Poor Gene was that reluctant to break up with her.
  • Linda's complete breakdown after learning that Louise deliberately sabotaged their old couch so the family can get a new one in "Sacred Couch".
    • Also, Louise remembering the good moments she had with that couch, and regretting wanting to throw it away.
  • Rudy's breakdown at the end of "House of 1000 Bounces" after the kids are detained in the ranger's station. Rudy starts screaming at Louise that he didn't want to steal the bounce house but no one would listen to him, and while his idea for a "spoon puppet show" seemed like a pathetic way for him to salvage how crappy his birthday was going it turned out he'd written a fairly detailed script and wanted to perform it with the other kids. He starts crying over how horrible his birthday has gone, but thankfully Louise steps in and tells Rudy they can still put on the show he wanted.
    Rudy: (to Louise) "Great birthday party"?! GREAT?! THIS IS THE WORST! I didn't want to steal that bounce house, but none of you would listen! (gasps) All I wanted is a spoon puppet show, I wrote a script and everything! It's a comedy-drama with two (gasps) strong female leads! (breaks tears) I WAS PROUD OF IT! (breaks down crying on the couch's armrest)
    Louise: So... You didn't like your party.
  • Tina having to say goodbye to her imaginary horse Jericho in "The Horse Rider-er".
  • Bob's rant near the end of "Glued, Where's My Bob?", where he says that getting stuck to the toilet and publicly humiliated is just the sort of nonsense he has to put up with every day at Bob's Burgers. You can tell the poor guy is at the end of his rope.
    • Although she caused the problem in the first place, Louise seems to show genuine remorse about gluing Bob to the toilet. It's implied that she's invoking Never My Fault not because of selfishness, but because she feels that bad about harming Bob and is in denial. And when the aforementioned rant happens, she feels so awful that she immediately owns up to her involvement in front of everyone.

Season 7

  • "Sea Me Now" revisits Teddy's status as a divorcee, and reveals that his ex-wife Denise didn't just cheat on him while he watched—she did so repeatedly, and it's also revealed that Teddy was on the receiving end of Domestic Abuse—Denise regularly bullied him and belittled his physical appearance (which is why he wears a beanie all the time), and wouldn't even let him use the bathroom indoors, treating him less like her husband and more like a pet (which is honestly being generous). Then, she finally abandons him for someone else, leaving Teddy to deal with a lot of emotional baggage that takes until the events of the episode (years after his divorce) for him to get over. As if the poor guy hadn't already been through enough...
  • "Large Brother, Where Fart Thou?" has Louise being driven to tears when Logan finally corners her.
  • In "Bob Actually", Louise has to break the news to Rudy that Chloe Barbash doesn't return his affections. Rudy doesn't get it at first... which makes it so much sadder when he does.
    Louise: (trying to make Rudy feel better) But who cares, right?
    Rudy: (looking genuinely upset) ...I guess I care.
  • There's something genuinely upsetting about how Linda and a number of the players are treated in "Zero Larp Thirty", as they expected to roleplay their favorite TV show and instead spent a weekend being forced into servitude while the people who got the rich people roles treat them like garbage. Especially since most of these people paid to be there, and instead of having fun, are forced to eat gruel and waste their time cleaning silverware.
  • Gene's sensory processing issues leading to a panic attack in "The Laser-inth". Not to mention just how upset and vulnerable he sounds when Bob realizes what's going on and tries to help.

Season 8

  • "Thanks-Hoarding" sheds some light on Teddy as a child; he developed a hoarding obsession due to how he's always felt that he alone could fix anything, even his parent's failing marriage. By the end, you just want to give him a hug and tell him he'll be okay.
  • In "Boywatch", the junior lifeguards' utter disappointment after Tina, who wanted to prove them she can be worthy to be one of them by saving the CPR dummy named Can't Breathey Stevie, caused the entire squad to be kicked out from the program, as well as her grief for what she has done.
  • Bob speaking at the funeral of his estranged friend, Harry, in "Mission Impos-slug-ble".
  • Bob's plotline in "Something Old, Something New, Something Bob Caters for You" has him worry that he's not making the most of his life as a restauranteur and overall feeling unfulfilled, which is why he's so desperate to see the wedding he's catering succeed, because he views it as the validation he thinks his career needs. While not outright stated, it's pretty clear the poor guy's going through some variant of a midlife crisis.

Season 9

  • While it's not played out to be too upsetting, Helen suddenly abandoning Teddy for the netsuke in "The Helen Hunt" becomes a lot more upsetting from Teddy's perspective. The woman he likes doesn't care about him and is using him for her own personal gain, tossing him aside when she has what she needs. It's especially sad considering the series has already established that Helen isn't the first of Teddy's love interests to do that to him.
  • In "Yes Without My Zeke", Randy spends the B-plot backhandedly insulting Bob's Burgers. Unlike how he reacts to most jabs at himself or his restaurant, Bob doesn't respond with a quip, a sarcastic remark, or even resignation. Instead, he's shown to be genuinely hurt by what Randy's saying—not even mad, just hurt—and it takes Linda giving a pep talk to lift his spirits. Much like the above example, it's not played up as too upsetting, but it's a rather sobering reminder that the hurtful things people say to Bob do in fact hit him hard, he's just putting on a brave face through it all.

Season 10

  • In "The Ring (But Not Scary)", we have the kids losing Bob's anniversary gift for Linda at the water park. Bob isn't just annoyed or upset with them, he's livid, and the episode highlights why—he feels like he's failed to give Linda anything special for their entire relationship, and when it finally looked like he could change that the kids lost the gift. When a search at the water park turns up nothing, Bob becomes so sad that he just... gives up. He tells Nat to call off the search and apathetically sinks into the lazy river. He can't even bring himself to yell at his kids again, he's just that emotionally drained.
    • The kids, for one, feel awful for ruining the anniversary. At no point do any of them try to deflect the blame or downplay the severity of the situation, they just feel plain bad. And when they see how upset Bob is, they feel even worse. Gene apologizes for putting on the ring, Tina tries to tell Bob that they need him, and Louise simply just asks if he wants them to get out of his way for good. There's no jokes from any of them (at least, no intentional ones), no attempts at lightening the mood. They've messed up, and they know it.
      • "Hawk & Chick" shows that Louise has a massive fear of being separated from Bob for one reason or another. To hear Bob say in no uncertain terms that he wants nothing to do with the kids after they lost the ring almost certainly reminded her of that fear, and it's no wonder that she seems to be the most upset of all the kids for their actions, to the point that she doesn't try to invoke Never My Fault once despite that usually being her go-to response. It also makes it even more depressing that she's the one to suggest that the kids should leave forever—she knows it means separating from Bob, but after seeing how upset she's made him Louise genuinely believes Bob might be better off without her, even if she's not better off without him.
      Louise: Do you want us to go live somewhere else? We could go to an orphanage for a while.
      • The above fear gets even worse when one remembers that "Hawk & Chick" implied she'd blame herself if the two split up. Now she believes that they are about to split up... and because she and her siblings lost the ring, this time she really is to blame.
  • She eventually takes it a bit too far, but one can't help but feel a little bad for Tina in "A Fish Called Tina". She's spent four years excited for Wagstaff's mentorship program, only to struggle to connect with Kaylee. Worse is that Tina is the only one to struggle—every other eighth grader (even Tammy) manages to have a good time with their assigned fourth grader, and it's not on Kaylee's end either—when she gets reassigned to Zeke, Zeke manages to get through to her. Imagine spending years looking forward to something, just to be the only one unable to enjoy it.
  • Although it's not revealing anything new, Bob's song in "Flat-Top O' the Morning to Ya" about his fears of the restaurant failing, exacerbated after visiting a restaurant that just couldn't make it out of the red.

Season 11

  • Bob is at his most upset in "Bob Belcher and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Kids" when his kitchen catches fire. Thankfully, the damage is minor, but the Belchers were that close to losing everything—and, as Teddy points out, maybe even each other too.
    • Bob breaks down while apologizing to his broken stovetop for using a replacement on top if it, likening it to cheating on Linda. Although it's Played for Laughs (complete with overly dramatic music), it really brings home how much Bob loves his job and how seriously he takes cooking burgers.
    • Bob has to repeatedly restrain himself from screaming at the kids as they each reveal their apparent accidental hand in the fire that damaged the kitchen—and he fails on multiple occasions before immediately apologizing for snapping. You can tell Bob knows it isn't right to treat his kids that way and stops himself from getting too hysterical, but at the same time he's also genuinely upset thinking his own children may have destroyed the kitchen and the family's livelihood.
    • Gene seems on the verge of tears as he confesses to his probable role in the fire, and almost reverts to a more childlike state as he calls his parents "Mommy" and "Daddy".
    • Gene, Louise and Tina all feel incredibly guilty about the fire, with Louise out of all three of them the one to openly admit they're horrible kids who messed up big time. They even consider moving out after seeing just how upset Bob is, deciding collectively that all they do is make things worse for their father. Even after the damage is resolved (thanks to Bob getting a spare thermocouple), it takes being told that they didn't cause the fire for the kids to break out of this mindset.
  • "The Terminalator II: Terminals of Endearment" showcases Linda's parents at their most annoying and eventually puts a rather depressing light on every episode involving Linda's interactions with both them and Gayle. Linda is apparently fine with putting up with Gloria and Al's ridiculous and inconveniencing requests, including the fact Gloria blatantly stole Linda's phone charger and lies to her about it, simply because they're her parents. That she puts up with the exact same behavior from Gayle on a regular basis shows how Linda's family doesn't seem to care at all about bothering her because they know she'll say yes to anything they ask. The entire series we get to see how much Linda's core family appreciates her, which makes it more depressing to see the few family members who don't.
    • This episode also puts a new light on every single one of Bob's interactions with Gloria, Al, and Gayle—for so long he seemed like the typical "guy who can't stand his in-laws" trope, but this episode shows that every single grievance he had with them was completely justified, and if anything Bob was being kind. The Obnoxious In-Laws cliche also gets taken to a disturbingly upsetting level—Gloria isn't just obnoxious to Bob, she's manipulative and outright abusive to her own family. Bob outright tells Linda he can't stand her parents not because they annoy him, but because they don't deserve such a wonderful daughter as her. It probably tears him up inside to see her go through hoops to please people who don't appreciate her, and one has to wonder if the kids have this mindset too considering how they're never jumping out of their seats to see Gloria or Al.
    • The worst part of it all is how realistic it is. Gloria isn't too over-the-top or cartoonish in her obnoxiousness—if anything, she's an eerily accurate portrayal of an Abusive Parent who manipulates her own kids into doing things that benefit her while treating her extended family like crap. And considering Linda refuses to cut her from her life at any point, one has to wonder just how long she's been getting away with this.
  • "Die Card or Card Trying" has poor Linda going through Hell and back trying to get a perfect photo for the Belchers' Christmas card. Her obsession leads her to drag the family to Three Mile Lookout Point (named after how long you have to walk to get there), and then struggle with the camera timer, have hikers take the photo only for them to come out too dark because the sun is right behind her, and after what seems to be hours, she finally gets what she considers the perfect family photo. And then the universe decides to Yank the Dog's Chain and have Linda trip and drop the camera through a hole between the rocks. It almost falls out the other side and off a sheer cliff, but Linda manages to catch it... only for her hand to be unable to fit through without having to let go of the camera. Linda hangs on to that camera for dear life, as she has put all her hopes on that one perfect photo and can't bear to have all that effort go to waste. Anyone who has ever struggled with taking the perfect family photo can relate.
    • The reason she's so obsessed with the picture is because the family has been getting less and less Christmas cards, and Linda thinks it's because they haven't been sending cards as often because it's so difficult to take a good picture of them. Linda's fear is that they'll lose touch with other people and ultimately be shunned.
  • In "Vampire Disco Death Dance", Bob takes Tina to the titular Audience Participation movie because he loved it as a kid and wants them to bond over the film. Unfortunately, Tina invites her schoolmates along because she's desperately trying to become friends with them, although they have no interest in the movie. After getting increasingly annoyed with their Jerkass behavior, Tina gives them a "Reason You Suck" Speech and runs out of the theater in tears. The only bright spot is that it leads to a heartwarming moment when Bob leaves the theater to console her.
    Tina: Stop it! You guys are being so annoying! I shouldn’t have invited you! I thought you actually wanted to do this!... I’m such an idiot for thinking we could do something interesting together and remember it and bond over it and be a krew, with a K!
    • Another sad revelation in this episode makes you think about Tina's social life and how it's mostly been implied that she doesn't really have any close friends. This episode outright does away with the implications and straight-up reveals that she doesn't really have any friends period, and instead tries to settle with the few acquaintances she has just so she can feel included.
      • It gets sadder when you recall Gene and Louise's own friend groups (Alex, Courtney, Rudy, and occasionally the Pesto twins), and just how close-knit her sibling's friendships are with the other kids and how their loyalty and affection towards each other completely contrasts with the superficial, discourteous relationship Tina has with her peer group of Tammy, Jocelyn, Jimmy Jr., and Zeke. Even Louise's largely-manipulative treatment of the Pesto twins doesn't come across as mean-spirited as the eighth-graders' callous treatment of Tina.
      • Additionally, the fact that this is revealed by Tina's peers rudely interfering with what was meant to be a heartwarming bonding night between Bob and Tina. Tina's siblings regularly have uninterrupted bonding moments with at least one of their parents (Louise and Bob watch TV together almost daily; Gene and Linda do weekly spa nights together). But the few times Tina gets to have any sort of alone time with Bob or Linda, her plans are completely derailed. One has to wonder if all this has made Tina feel not just like The Friend Nobody Likes, but The Unfavorite as well, that she thinks she can't bond with her parents as well as her siblings.

Season 12

  • "Manic Pixie Crap Show" starts the season off with a bang, as both plotlines get rather depressing.
    • Louise tries to convince Millie and a few other girls they don't actually like the Pixie Princess Promenade and that they need to free themselves of their obsession by getting rid of their wands. Tina tries to stop Louise by pointing out Millie and the others actually do like it, which leads to Louise asking how this is possible if she doesn't like it—or any typically girly events, for that matter. This eventually causes her to ask if there's something wrong with her or if she's not being a girl the right way. While Louise has always had more interest in boyish activities, and on several occasions made it clear she prefers hanging out with her dad and brother over her mom and sister, Louise shows here that she's always been self-conscious and unsure about this aspect of herself—and it's not that she dislikes being One of the Boys (in fact, it's quite the opposite considering she has a good relationship with both Bob and Gene), it's that she doesn't think other girls are like that. And because of that, she wanted to convince Millie and the rest they didn't actually like the Pixie Princess Promenade so it would be easier for Louise to justify her own dislike. Because if other girls really do like this sort of thing, what does that make Louise? Thankfully, Tina convinces Louise that disliking princess stuff doesn't make Louise any less of a girl and she's fine the way she is.
    • Linda gets obsessed over a flower bouquet styled to look like a dog when it's delivered to the restaurant by mistake. She compares the bouquet to a dog she loved when was a child, whom she called "Bottlecap" because he could balance a bottlecap on his nose. Linda then casually reveals Bottlecap got killed by a hot dog truck one day, before she starts laughing about it and insists she's fine. Bob and Teddy are both tremendously horrified and saddened by Linda's story and her disturbing behavior, with Bob thinking Linda never mentioned Bottlecap because it was too painful for her to think about. Linda's story gets even sadder when she reveals Bottlecap died right in front of her. After Mort reveals the bouquet was ordered for a funeral and Linda locks herself in the bathroom with it, Mort convinces Linda to treat the flowers like the real dog so she can finally grieve and let go of Bottlecap after all those years. And when Linda finally does, decades of holding in the grief come rushing out as she immediately starts crying her eyes out, wailing Bottlecap's name. Then she reveals that her eighth grade teacher also got hit by a truck.
      Bob: Good God, Lin!
  • While the big reveal in "The Pumpkinening" is sweet, with Linda sabotaging her own pumpkin to spare Gayle's feelings, that same thing is also rather upsetting. Linda genuinely feels like she can't have anything for herself without having to worry about Gayle's reaction to it, and has resorted to self-sabotage just to keep her sister happy. After this episode, one has to wonder how many other victories she's sacrificed just to keep Gayle from becoming a Green-Eyed Monster.


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