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Tear Jerker / Digimon Adventure

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  • Episode 13, when Angemon knowingly sacrifices himself to protect TK and the other chosen children.
    Angemon: Sorry, Takeru. Surely we will meet again... if that is your wish...
  • Episode 22, where Matt tells TK he's leaving for a few hours and never returns. TK was in 2nd grade. This could border on nightmare fuel.
    • That TK and Tokomon split up in the first place, all thanks to DemiDevimon's lies. And then the first sight we see of Tokomon in the episode is collapsed by TK's digivice and crest.
  • Episode 26, Biyomon wants to protect her friends from their newest enemy, Myotismon, but Sora holds her back and tells her not to or she'll get hurt. Biyomon cries "Sora, why can't you understand me?" Cue Sora realizing that she's behaving like her own mother towards Biyomon, so that this whole time, her mother was always overprotective because she loved her and was looking after her. Biyomon/Birdramon then attacks Myotismon only to be impaled in the chest by Myotismon's attack. Sora cries "Birdramon, no! I love you!" And then her crest of love glows. Made poignant by the fact that Sora's been feeling this whole time like she's never known love and can't truly love anyone. This is also very much a Heartwarming Moment.
  • The end of episode 21: Hikari wordlessly begging her brother not to leave her and his sorrow as he realizes he has to leave her again are nothing short of heartbreaking... the music doesn't help.
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    • The arc that follows, where everyone is separated due to Tai's absence. Joe is stuck buried in debt at a digital world restaurant, Demidevimon drives a rift between TK and Tokomon, Izzy gets stuck in a dark void and is tempted by a Vademon to give up his desire for knowledge (which renders him submissive), Mimi is being waited on by a group of Geckomon and Otamamon and starts to go crazy with power, Matt is struggling to find TK and Sora is the only one who isn't lost, but thanks to Demidevimon she's convinced she'll never truly know love and that her crest will never glow, so she can't bring herself to face her friends (though that doesn't stop her from helping them from the shadows).
  • Pumpkinmon and Gotsumon's deaths. Although they were technically Myotismon's henchmen, they were only interested in causing mischief and having fun. They even befriend Matt and TK, and when Myotismon himself shows up, Pumpkinmon and Gotsumon pull a You Shall Not Pass! to allow their new friends to escape, despite not being anywhere near Myotismon's power level. The English dub claims that Myotismon "banished them to his dungeon", but it's pretty clear he actually killed them.
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  • Gatomon's back story is one giant Tear Jerker. She is accidentally abandoned, waiting all her life for her "special person" only for her to never show up, and then picked up by Myotismon only to be abused and warped into a super-soldier? It's too much.
  • Wizardmon performing a Diving Save for Kari and Gatomon. The conversation that ensues just clinches it.
    Wizardmon: Are you alright, Gatomon?
    Gatomon: You saved me... I'm sorry.
    Wizardmon: About what?
    Gatomon: Sorry I got you involved in this...
    Wizardmon: Don't be sorry. I don't have any regrets. If I hadn't met you, my life would have had no meaning. I'm glad that you and I were friends...
    Gatomon: ...That's forever...
    Wizardmon: Thank you for everything, Gatomon...
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  • Izzy's backstory. At a young age, he overheard his parents say that he was adopted and it was haunted him for years. When he finally reveals that he knows, his parents reveal that his biological parents died in an accident. They also reveal that they had a child who died as an infant. Even Tentomon was bawling when he learnt about it.
  • The mass memorial that follows Whamon's death — Wizardmon, Chuumon, Piximon, and now Whamon. The fact that it's this early in the Dark Masters arc says so much. Tai attempts to tell Mimi that they have to keep on fighting for their sake, but she and Matt aren't having any of it; they only managed to beat one Dark Master thus far, and the kids are already at their breaking point.
  • Leomon's death and Ogremon's reaction to it, starting the tradition of killing Leomon forever.
  • The entirety of "My Sister's Keeper":
    • Tai's growing desperation and near Sanity Slippage as he tries to find medicine for his ill sister.
    • Tai recounting how Kari nearly died because of his irresponsible actions when he was just a kid. What really hurts are Kari's first words back from the hospital ("Tai, I'm sorry I can't kick the ball very good. You'll probably never want to play with me again.").
      • Surprisingly, the scene is especially tearjerking in the dub due to Joshua Seth's performance. You can really buy the fact that that the poor kid is breaking down in tears, struggling just to talk through the sobbing. This is easily one of the dub version's most emotively powerful parts.
      • The whole scene is sad in itself, but the whole thing is made worse is the fact that his mother actually slapped him in the hospital and yelled at him like he committed bloody murder (the shot of Tai's mom hitting him is cut in the dub, but the mark it left on his face is left intact). What kid wouldn't be an emotional mess after all of that? It's even tear-jerking (and somewhat understandable, if very extreme) if you look at it from Mrs. Kamiya's perspective; her son had just made a boneheaded decision that could have easily ended up leading to her younger kid dying. What parent wouldn't feel the need to at least yell at their kid for something like that?
    • It's hard to notice the first time you watch it, but look at Agumon while Tai is done telling the story. He's crying.
    • Chances are that many a viewer have gone through a similar experience to Tai in being traumatized by a memory of you screwing up badly as a kid and not realizing the consequences until they happen and your angry crying mother slaps some sense back into you.
  • Takeru tricking Pinocchimon into thinking they were going to play, and then bailing on him. He probably thought he finally made a friend, but it wasn't so, and it was his own doing.
    • What happens exactly makes it moreso; Takeru claims that Pinocchimon has no friends, so Pinocchimon goes off to prove him wrong by... building another puppet out of the junk in his house. While he's gone, Takeru destroys the things he used to screw with the other children. When Pinocchimon finally gets back to show off his 'friend', TK's gone. Something about the way Pinocchimon lets the other puppet fall when he realizes this...
  • WarGreymon and MetalGarurumon's fight during Episode 45 also counts, the whole clash happens because of Yamato's insecurities exploding to the point of getting into a fistfight with Taichi as the group can only watch without being able to do anything about it. And even then, Taichi still doesn't want to fight Yamato, asking him with a distraught look on his face if that's what he really wants.
    Taichi: Yamato! Do you really think the Digimon who died for us would want us to fight this senseless battle?
    (Cue a close up of Yamato crying during this)
    • After this, the group finally starts to split up for varying reasons: Matt's ashamed of letting his emotions get the better of him, while Mimi's tired of watching everyone sacrifice themselves for their sake, and Joe stays behind to protect Mimi. The main group is now reduced from eight to five for six whole episodes.
  • For some, Puppetmon's death.
    Puppetmon: Cherrymon... what do those kids have that I don't?
    Cherrymon: Friends...
    • Puppetmon is probably the most sympathetic Dark Master, because he just wants a friend to play with... the trouble is, he's a psychotic nutcase whose idea of fun involves killing and torture, so it'll never happen.
  • All the Numemon teaming up against Machinedramon, only for all hundred or so to be killed with one punch. As a matter of fact, pretty much anything the Dark Masters do leads to this. Things like Whamon being skewered and Puppetmon's Bad Boss habits won't leave your mind easily.
  • In episode 50, it's revealed that the Primary Village has been turned into a wasteland. Seeing Elecmon go from an overprotective Jerkass to a massive Woobie is quite a shock.
  • Episode 51 has both Matt and Sora trapped in caves formed by the darkness in their own hearts. Matt, in particular, is angsting over feeling alone, thinking Tai was a better brother than he was. But Gabumon is able to pull him out of it by reminding him he isn't alone. Even when Gabumon compares Tai and Matt to ice cream in the dub, the scene can still bring tears.
    Matt: I've never let anyone ever get close to me before. Not since my family split up. Ever since then, I've been alone. I figured if my family didn't want me, that I would just keep to myself and never tell anyone what I was feeling, and I swore I would never let anyone see me cry. But, really all I wanted to do was cry.
    Gabumon: ...Then cry.
    • Gabumon even starts crying when Matt says that he doesn't matter to anyone, because Gabumon had been waiting his whole life for Matt.
  • The last episode and the three preceding it. This makes it even sadder. Palmon doesn't want to say goodbye, as she knows it's going to be too difficult; she even hides from Mimi as the latter runs through the forest searching for her. Some Geckomon, however, bring the poor thing out of depression by raising the point that not going to see Mimi off will be worse. So, later, as Mimi's crying on the flying tram car, Sora looks out of the window and suddenly shouts to Mimi to look out the window. And cut to the lone Palmon running, crying and shouting to Mimi. She's then joined by the other partner Digimon in a rousing chorus of Butterfly, acapella.
    • In the English dub, the ending music is changed to one final, full rendition of "Hey Digimon", which takes on a surprisingly bittersweet tone in the scene.
  • During the arc with Piedmon, we have Joe's Papa Wolf Heroic Sacrifice to get Izzy to safety, which actually leaves Izzy in tears as he gets away. Even worse is the fact that it doesn't work and Izzy still gets captured by Piedmon immediately after.

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