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Tear Jerker / SHAZAM! (2019)

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  • Thaddeus Sivana didn't have the happiest of childhoods. His father and brother constantly talking him down made him insecure enough to fail the test of the Wizard Shazam, and his confusion at said failure caused a car accident that crippled his father, causing further estrangement from them and driving him to villainy.
    • Later, Sivana lampshades to Shazam the Wizard the cruelty of telling a bullied little kid with low self-esteem that he's "unworthy".
  • Darla’s quick line about Mary going off to college being a tough subject for her must indicate how closely she values her siblings and how much it would hurt to lose one of them.
  • There's very little grandeur or glory in the Wizard choosing Billy as his champion/successor; it's more an act of desperation. Part of this is due to it being in the aftermath of Sivana's attack and the release of the Sins, but even without that the Wizard is exhausted; he's the last of his kind, and he's picked someone who's not up to his standards, but it's all he could find at an emergency. The best he can do is appeal to Billy to get his own council, so that he won't be alone like he himself was.
  • On their first day of school together, Darla hugs Billy before class and readily considers him as a brother, but he coldly tells her they aren’t actually brother and sister. The poor girl walks off looking ready to cry.
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    • And Billy quickly gets how unnecessarily cold he was to her and attempts to apologize but to no avail, as Darla is already walking away with Freddy comforting her.
  • Billy initially wanted no part in helping to fend Freddy from the bullies, even when they twist the knife by calling Freddy's foster family "fake". However, what they say next that prompts Billy to help is even more sobering when one bears in mind it hits too close to home for Billy: the bullies taunting Freddy for being motherless. (Crosses over into Heartwarming for being the moment Billy has a heart).
  • Rosa, Billy's latest foster mother, showing insecurity about whether she's a good foster mother and if he's run away. It takes a lot of pep talk from her husband for her to feel even the slightest bit better.
  • After Sivana sends the Deadly Sins on a rampage at Sivana Industries, he calmly takes the elevator down to leave. A message plays on the monitor promoting the company's 'belief in the importance of family'. Even after he's had his ultimate revenge against his father and brother and should be satisfied, he gets so upset at the video and the dishonesty and abuse it represents to him that he punches the screen. It's important to note that at this point in the movie, we've now met the Vasquezes. Horrific as Sivana might be, there's still a pretty blatant contrast between Billy's supportive, caring foster family and the absolutely awful biological family poor Thad had to grow up with.
    • That contrast is further explored later, when Sivana has Billy's foster siblings held hostage. Whilst he waits for Shazam to arrive, he sees the Vasquez's Christmas Reef, adorned with pictures of their foster children. Sivana's glare is a cold and cruel one, but one can sense longing behind those eyes, how much he deeply envies this family made up of people who spontaneously care about each other when his own biological family never treated him with one iota of kindness.
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  • A (literally) tiny one, but anyone who's ever lost a prized collectible to simple bad luck can relate to Freddy when Billy (as Shazam) accidentally drops the Superman Bullet in the sewers.
  • While the "buying a lair" scene is comical, it becomes sobering when Billy immediately vetoes Freddy's request for a lair with seven bedrooms (one for each of them and their foster siblings) and he doesn't seem to understand why Freddy would want a lair with no more than one. It's a somber indication of Billy's persistent loner philosophy.
    • Generally, Billy's arc of believing it's better to go solo than to have someone there by his side.
  • Billy (as Shazam) sees Mary crying while reading a letter and assumes that she got rejected by Caltech. It's actually the opposite. She was accepted but now she's not sure she wants to go because it would mean going across the country and leaving their foster family.
  • Freddy ranting to Billy (as Shazam) after he fails to show up for the other students at lunch, leaving Freddy humiliated.
    Freddy: Everything I do is like some desperate attempt to get people to notice me, to not feel sorry for me. I mean, look at me! Look at me! Do you even see me? Cause most people don't, cause they don't want to, and now you don't either.
  • After escaping Sivana, as if to add insult to injury, Billy has to face his foster parents reprimanding him for running off, skipping school, and whatever he did to get that nosebleed. The saddest part is, they can't comprehend that Billy is having the worst day imaginable.
  • Billy's lifelong mission has basically been to reunite with his mother. When he finally does, she pushes him aside as he tries to hug her before she reveals that she essentially abandoned him because she didn't want to take care of him. Billy leaves her, heartbroken.
    • It makes it all the more harsh when one thinks back to Billy's establishing moment, where he's standing before what he hoped to be his biological mother's home. It was a beautiful little house at that, replete with all the Christmas Decorations a middle class can afford. Billy had hopes that waiting for him in that house would be the amazing mom he remembered from years ago. To say the least, this scene is an Ironic Echo to Billy's life-long expectations, as well as his memories.
    • In the first flashback, Billy remembers his mother bright and hopeful and loving being with him. When she relates that day, however, she shows Billy was remembering it better as a child. In reality, she was haggard and overwhelmed, and showed signs of stress. Even the gloves are different.
    • The worst part is Billy showing her the compass she won for him at that fair, the item he has held onto all these years, and the only link to his mother... and she asks "what is that?"
      Billy: Keep it. It looks like you need it more than me.
    • She actively dodges any question of her making Billy's life miserable by abandoning him, half-heartedly asking him for assurance that he "landed on his feet" without her.
    • When she asks if he landed on his feet, Billy tells her he has rather than how he's thrown away countless chances to be happy looking for a woman who never wanted him. You can hear a slight hint of desperation in her voice as she aks him that, as if she's asking that her leaving him behind to find a better life wasn't All for Nothing.
    • When Billy leaves her, he quietly tells her that he's going to return to his real family. It's driven even further in that she does not appear any further in the film after this scene, not even in passing. Because his mother abandoned him as her son, Billy disowned her as his mother.
  • It's not hard to feel at least a little bit sorry for Sivana after he's defeated. He's locked in an uncomfortably small cell and all he can do is draw the seven symbols over and over on his cell walls in a desperate attempt to reclaim his power, or at the very least get out. Then his charcoal snaps and he howls in despair. It really sells the message about how self-destructive obsession can be.

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