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Tear Jerker / Happy Sugar Life

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It's a given that such a dark series would have these moments.

In General:

  • The home situation with the Kobe family. Asahi and Shio's mother is revealed to have been raped by her would be husband when she accidentally pushed him. After being forced to marry him, Shio and Asahi's father would dish out domestic violence onto them, using them to satiate his hedonistic lifestyle. He left when he learned that his father died, leaving a big fortune only to return when he used it all. He threatened to rip Asahi's fingernails off out of curiosity with seeing how much pain he could endure, and forced him to buy him alcohol. His mother eventually tried to leave with her daughter, but unfortunately, she began to pick up the abusive tendencies her husband did, climaxing in her abandoning her daughter in the streets. Asahi himself was made to sleep alone outside and began to search for his sister who unbeknownst to him, was kidnapped by a mentally unstable psychopath.
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  • While her crimes are unforgivable and she is still a teen girl in love with a child, when you get down to it: Satou is honestly a really sad person. She lost her parents at a really young age and had to live with an extremely dysfunctional aunt who was in no place to raise a child. She's also has had this obsession with figuring out what it meant to "love", her idea of it getting muddled the more she sees her aunt's version of it. This obsession lead her to sleep around with who-knows-how-many men who all confessed love that she couldn't reciprocate. By the time she met Shio, Satou looked so empty due to her inability to have genuine feelings toward anyone. Even though it's sick, it's no wonder she latched onto Shio. She's a child, but she made Satou feel loved for the first time ever.
  • Shoko's death. When Shoko snaps a picture of Shio in the apartment, Satou confronts her on it. Despite insisting that she wouldn't tell anyone about her discovery, Satou harshly states she didn't care for her as much in the way Shoko cared for her, and coldly murders her by slitting her throat. Despite her claims, it seems that her murder of her best friend was the final nail to her sanity as when she mentally tries to write people out of her life, Shoko was the only one she could not erase.
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  • The chapter 38 cover shows just Mitsuboshi sitting with a blank look in his eyes and tears running down his face, while an unknown hand strokes his face. It's fairly sad when you remember that, in spite of his present actions, he too is a victim in his own right, like Satou, and is incredibly traumatized by his experience of being kidnapped and raped. And with what actually happens in said chapter...
  • In Chapter 39, Satou appears to express some remorse for murdering Shouko; after changing Shouko's corpse back into its school uniform, Shouko's lifeless body falls onto her, causing the room to spiral uncontrollably. This would suggest that despite her claim, Satou truly did care for her friend. Unfortunately, this apparently does nothing to make Satou realize the error of her ways, and the chapter ends with Satou mentally crossing Shouko out of her mind, thus permanently establishing that she was Beyond Redemption.
  • Unlike what happens in the anime, Asahi tries to agressively approach Mitsuboshi to get more information on Shio, but after one swing of the bat he feels disgusted with himself and is reminded of the hellish abuse his father dealt to him. What drives it home is how Mitsuboshi taunts him for not being able to be Shio's knight and savior, which makes the boy snap in frustration.
  • The way Satou is bested is a tragic example of For Want of a Nail. She committed the setups for the perfect crime and was about to leave with Shio to somewhere else...only to find out she lost her wedding ring with Shio. When she got back there trying to grab it back, it led to her running into a series of events that led to both of them jumping off the roof, Satou dies shielding Shio and the child left all alone being broken and corrupted because of Satou's death and her grooming — all this for a lost wedding ring. Had they ever left knowing that there's no turning back for that ring, they'll have been enjoying life somewhere overseas and Satou would had been pulled out the ultimate cover-up seamlessly.
  • Asahi's whole life in general. For all his jerkish actions towards Mitsuboshi in the later parts, Asahi too was a victim, of horrible domestic abuse, and has been one for his whole life. It's hard to blame him or hate him for his actions after seeing all the crap he has gone through, especially since he is a firm believer in the capacity for great kindness in good people and wishes the world were more fair so that cruelty was punished and kindess rewarded all the time, making it that much more tragic that present day circumstances crossed with the psychological and emotional damage of his past veers Asahi into acting just as unrelentingly cruel and hateful as those he wished to be nothing like later into the story.

Individual Anime Episodes:

  • Episode 5:
    • Shoko is made to flee from Mitsuboshi upon discovering his perverted obsession with Shio.
  • Episode 6:
    • After enduring years of abuse from the hands of his father, Asahi finds him dead when he went to buy alcohol for him. Naturally, he celebrates, and goes to find his mother and sister...only to realize that it was too late, and that Shio was gone.
    • Meeting with Asahi again, when Shoko asks him why he was sleeping underneath a bench, he laments saying that he thought the top of the park bench would've been too dangerous.
    • Seeing Shoko be so torn up by the idea that she may not know Satou at all. When Satou dodges her questions about her home life, Shoko has a similar crisis Satou faced in the previous episode scared that whatever business Satou was privately in would tear her away from her.
      • Even with Shoko's confession, Satou treats it as alien to her which only further exemplifies how mentally warped she is.
  • Episode 7:
    • In a way, Satou asking Shouko if she'd remain her friend. That little bit of hesitance in Shouko's voice seals Satou's suspicions, and a smidge of hurt can even be heard in Satou's flat tone. This scene undoes the actions of the previous episode, making Shouko's promise of always being there for Satou all the more depressing.
  • Episode 8:
    • Despite what he had become, it's hard not to feel bad for Mitsuboshi when he panics after an older woman innocently touches his shoulder out of concern. It speaks volumes of how thoroughly traumatized he is from his experience.
    • Additionally, Mitsuboshi realizes just how far he's fallen and makes the earnest decision to change...only to be brought back to his current position because of Satou.
    • Satou's dilemma in the flashback. It is revealed that she used to model for the original owner of the apartment room as one of her desperate feats of getting away from her aunt. The fact that she even offers the neighbor sex in return just shows how much her aunt ruined her.
  • Episode 9:
    • The depth of Asahi's obsession with finding Shio is shown in full swing. While Satou is having the time of her life with his sister, Asahi is suffering and is most assuredly losing what little sanity he had left. At the least, this leads to one of the few genuinely heartwarming moments of the series courtesy of Shouko.
    • Just like the manga, Shouko's death, however, the anime adaptation somehow manages to make the scene even more heart wrenching. We are subject to Shouko desperately clawing Satou for release while she slowly bleeds out. The fact that Satou is completely stoic throughout all of this firmly makes it clear that this time, Satou had truly crossed the line and that there would be no going back.
      • The worst aspect is the lack of sound during the scenes revolving around Satou and Shouko arguing with each other, as the very sweet and lovely sounding "Canaria" is playing over the scene and the characters' voices aren't heard. And then we have the cruel Hope Spot of Shouko confidently walking towards the door, just as the song is ending...only to be attacked from behind by Satou who reminds her that she rejected her earlier, so she wasn't going to allow her to leave that easily. From her last breaths, Shouko only wanted to "liberate" her best friend from the darkness only to painfully die for her trouble.
      • Worse; before she plunges the knife into her neck, Satou softly apologizes to Shouko before doing the deed. For a brief moment, Satou appears to have a resigned expression on her face. Despite her claims of seeing Shouko as insignificant, Satou seems to regret what she was about to do, but she saw no other option.
    • Shio expresses absolute fear at how brutish Satou was when she forces Shouko into the apartment, and is then told to go into another room by her. One can't help but think that Shio blames herself for what happened to Shouko.
  • Episode 10:
    • After the major shockwave that was the previous episode, episode 10 opens with Satou lying motionlessly on the floor. She remains in that position for a good duration of the run time. While she may or may not feel guilty for murdering Shouko, it is a safe bet to suggest that she was emotionally exhausted from the experience.
    • More flashbacks from Shio's memories are shown. We see her mother getting horribly talked down to by her husband, and later on when her mother expresses excitement at passing down her kimono to her daughter, her husband rashly berates her for it, demanding that she sell it to support his habits.
      • Really, Shio's situation is as sad as it is disturbing: she was abandoned by her mother one day. Because she was so young at the time, Shio didn't completely understand her reasons for it, and grew to despise her mother. Satou, having watched the entire event play out, inquires Shio on why she was opting out of chasing her. Shio replies that it was because her mother's "jar" was so broken beyond repair, she let her go. But when Shio looked at Satou, she saw that her jar was still in tact. Even when Shio learned about the horrible actions that Satou committed for her sake, she nervertheless accepts her. Shio is literally implicating that she would be happier living with a sociopathic murderer than her own birth mother.
    • To an extent, Shio yelling at Satou. While richly gratifying because of what Satou had done in the previous episode, Satou breaks down over Shio claiming she hated her causing her to go into an internal spout of madness. Despite everything, it's made more clear as the story progresses that both characters are broken, and in a way complete each other.
  • Episode 11:
    • Asahi calling Shouko's phone only to get her voice box instead. He is still unaware of what truly happened to her....Worse, he may think that Shouko betrayed him, despite it being no fault of her own.
    • Really, Asahi's situation in this episode is pretty bad. After a couple episodes having to endure beatings from strangers, and inadequate food and sleep among other things, Asahi is finally at the end of his rope and becomes more aggressive. This is best exemplified by him threatening to rip Mitsuboshi's fingernails off if he didn't give him Satou's address. It goes to show that no matter how hard he tried, at the end of the day, he is his father's son.
  • Episode 12:
    • Mitsuboshi is reduced to a weeping mess after getting raped by Satou's aunt, and begs for Asahi to save him. Asahi, however, leaves him citing how he lied to him numerously.
    • While inspecting Shouko's body, Satou could be seen momentarily quivering her lip.
    • Asahi discovering Shouko's corpse. Worse, in the manga version, Asahi weakly wipes away blood from Shouko's neck as a feeble way of apologizing to her. The one person who showed him some kindness in his life was gone, and he couldn't do anything about it.
    • While relatively minor, it is kind of sad to hear Satou's aunt reaffirm that despite everything she had done, she still loved her. Satou's only response is an annoyed look.
    • Asahi immediately trying to strike Satou with his bat out of revenge for her murdering Shouko.
    • Asahi finally finds Shio...only to then hear her say she cared for Satou more than her own family. Ouch...
    • Asahi telling Shio the real story of why their mother abandoned her: after abandoning her, their mother returned to her abusive husband and secretly poisoned his alcohol. She knew that she could end up getting arrested if she were found out, but she did so anyway.
      • Shio's response to this is equally shattering: while she gets over her disdain for her mother, she tells her brother to thank their mother for freeing her from an unhappy life.
    • Despite Shio's insistence of wanting to die with Satou, Satou — for once — chooses to take the full blunt of the blow rather than let Shio get injured.
    • The ending is depressing as it is terrifying: Asahi walks to the hospital, flowers in hand, and pays his very much alive sister a visit. A few years had passed since that incident, but Shio exhibits traits that are eerily similar to Satou and her aunt's. She presents herself as dismissive to her brother, fondly reflecting back on her life with Satou. A once pure-hearted character had been broken by the realities of her world, and it seems that it would take a long time for her to recover, if she ever does.
      • Alternative reading of the moment: Satou not only saved Shio's life, but saved her from being completely broken by the cruel reality of the real the most messed up way imaginable, transfering her own coping mechanism of her "happy sugar life" and the way in which she views the world ("sweet" and "bitter) and defines "love" onto Shio. Shio now wants nothing to do with anything or anyone, her family included, that exists outside the world within her own head and heart, because nothing she feels can make her any happier than the feelings of love between herself and an already dead girl that she's keeping preserved in her heart forever.
    • While Daichi deserved to be arrested during the ending credits, his wife and daughter most likely now know of his multiple affairs.
    • Her disturbing obsession with Satou aside, Sumire is genuinely heartbroken to learn of Satou falling to her death. This makes the conversation they had in the manga even more saddening. While Satou clearly had no intention of returning, the fact that in this version one of the last things she does for Satou is providing her with tickets is Unrequited Love at its finest.