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Tear Jerker / Ralph Breaks the Internet

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Ugh...really, Disney? You're tugging at our heartstrings already?!
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  • The movie kicks off with Sugar Rush getting unplugged, due to the wheel breaking off the machine. This was as a result of Ralph making a new track for Vanellope to make her race more exciting. She liked how it turned out, which goes to show... something.
  • Though it may be a result of Disney not wanting to obtain the rights to certain characters, combined with saving crowd-effects budget for the VERY busy Internet scenes, Game Central Station is noticeably a LOT less busy than it was in the first movie. This is most obvious in the scene where everyone gathers to see what's being plugged in and only a fair-sized crowd forms, compared to the bustling hordes of characters seen in the original. One wonders how many games got unplugged in the six-year gap between this movie and the last, especially given that arcades aren't exactly experiencing a major resurgence...
    • Sugar Rush is down to one cabinet, instead of the two cabinets it had in the first film.. Vanellope's already lost half her home! There's also a lot of empty sockets in the power strip / pdu that makes up Game Central Station.
  • When Vanellope first sees the internet, she's amazed and awed by the view, but then she starts to worry that they'll never find eBay in time and starts glitching out before Ralph reassures her.
  • Stan Lee's cameo. He passed away just a week before the movie released and loved making cameos in anything he could. While it is a breath of relief to know his famed trait of random appearances isn't over, it's also a sober reminder that he's gone.
    • Stan didn't even get a chance to see his cameo before his death.
    • Even worse is that, during his brief appearance, he's completely silent. The first cameo after a legend was lost, and not a word was said.
  • Ralph gets his feelings hurt when he reads the more negative comments section for his viral videos, but fortunately leads into a Heartwarming Moment when he states that Vanellope’s the only opinion he cares about.
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    • After he pays for the new wheel, however, Ralph's feelings end up taking another hit when he tries to call Vanellope to let her know, leading to his getting muted and overhearing her and Shank's conversation about Vanellope's desire to stay in Slaughter Race. Even if it inspired a huge dick move on his part, the guy just picked himself up from getting bombarded with hate comments— then, not one moment after he reassured himself that he's still got Vanellope as a true friend, hearing her want to stay in the game just hammered it in for him that she might not want him as a friend anymore.
      • Actually, this doesn't even hammer home Ralph's worst fear about losing his friend quite as much as what happens later: after Vanellope learns Ralph sabotaged "Slaughter Race", she's so furious and disgusted with what he did that she snatches his hero medal, a strong symbol of their friendship, and angrily flings it into a chasm. As she storms off, Ralph becomes an emotional wreck on the spot, helplessly drowning in his insecurity over having not a friend in the world.
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  • After Ralph saves an unconscious Vanellope from a rebooting Slaughter Race, he drops a little mixture of both a Please Wake Up and a Please Don't Leave Me. His voice is desperate for her not to die, so, honestly, who's to not get choked up?
    Ralph: [close to tears] Come on, Vanellope, wake up. Come on, don't leave me, kid.
  • When Vanellope awakens, she tearfully says to Ralph "I messed up so bad". Considering she knows Slaughter Race was glitching because of her power, the way she says is just heartbreaking. It goes even further when she decries her desire of returning to Slaughter Race as "a stupid dream" and just sobs into Ralph's arms. It can really hit home with people who found out their dream wasn't as perfect as they thought it would be, or were guilted into giving it up through circumstance; you can't help but want to pick her up and hug her tightly. And the look on Ralph's face just before he tells her the truth...
    • After Ralph admits he set the virus loose in Slaughter Race, Vanellope takes the cookie badge she made him and chucks it off a ledge. When Ralph finds it again, it's broken in half.
    • Hell, the entire What the Hell, Hero? speech that she gives to Ralph counts, and she isn't even able to forgive him on her own volition; it takes Yesss' later reminder of Ralph's better actions and the threat of his insecurity clones for Vanellope to do just that.
  • Ralph's speech to the Kaiju-Ralph is this unto itself (as well as Heartwarming).
    Ralph: It's not right to hold a friend back from her dreams. You don't own her! That's not how friendship works. You need to let her go!
    Ralph: Hey... you need to let her go. I know... it's gonna hurt a little bit when you do. (admittedly) Oh, who am I kidding... it's gonna hurt a lot. (gently) But... you're gonna be okay... (To Vanellope) and we're gonna be ok... right, kid?
    Vanellope: (Tearing up) Of course we are, always.
    Ralph: (To Kaiju-Ralph) See? No matter where she goes, or where she lives... she's always gonna be our friend, and we just gotta trust her... 'cuz that's what best friends do... right?
  • Vanellope ends up leaving Sugar Rush for good and staying in Slaughter Race. She and Ralph part ways and still keep in touch after, but it's clear by the end that things just aren't going to be the same for Ralph.
    • Their farewell to each other has Vanellope tearfully telling Ralph how much she loves him.
    • During the hug that Ralph and Vanellope share, their cookie medal halves line up one last time.
    • Her slow backing away into Slaughter Race as the two enthusiastically wave to one another, with Vanellope ducking down so they can continue to do so even as she climbs up the stairs. Then, at the last possible second, a car quickly cuts between them — and by the time it passes by, she's gone. And Ralph just slowly turns and walks away.
    • The whole scene can be read as an analogy of a friend or family member moving to a different city or country to never return, which to many viewers can hit home on how they saw their loved ones in the flesh for the last time.
  • It's given an off-handed mention, but the fact that Sugar Rush's publisher went out of business years ago is this when you consider that both it and Fix-It Felix Jr. were made by the same game company, TobiKomi. Despite both games' popularity, the company eventually went under, and with it, their franchises' in-universe futures (if the IPs weren't bought off by other publishers, that is).
    • Fridge Brilliance: Remember the mock trailer for Hero's Duty and how it featured the company "Wreck-It Studios?" Rest assured, that company may indeed be one that has ties to the former Tobikomi company (either restructuring or whatever), and may have inherited some of their assets. It goes back into Fridge Horror when you realize that that would mean that the company collapsed possibly years before the first film's events (with the worst case being shortly after they published Sugar Rush), and other portions of the company may have been acquired by others through liquidation.
  • Though a catchy piece of Awesome Music, Imagine Dragons' "Zero" is also a sad song, specially its chorus, which sums up Ralph's situation in the movie.
    Hello, hello
    Let me tell you what it's like to be a zero, zero
    Let me show you what it's like to always feel, feel
    Like I’m empty and there's nothing really real, real
    I'm looking for a way out
  • The fact that Ralph and Vanellope, who once happily spent every night together, only call each other once a week.


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