- Seeing Malcolm comfort Sam in Season Three.
- Malcolm's gradual deterioration throughout the season.
- Ollie's FaceHeel Turn in Season Four, from helping Malcolm sabotage Nicola, to utterly betraying Glenn, made worse by the moments when he seems to be uncomfortable before he just keeps going.
- Made even worse by the fact that he appears to be crying in 4.04 after ruining Nicola's career.
- Malcolm's career falling apart in seasons three and four.
Malcolm: I'm as dead as fucking two-tone. But I can fashion my own exit.Ollie: What, you're gonna fly yourself to Switzerland and have a wank off a nurse and a bye-bye pill are you?Malcolm: Funny, funny man. Political exit. I'm going to leave the stage with my head held high. What you are going to see is a masterclass in fucking dignity, son. The audience will be on their feet. "There he goes," they'll say. "No friends, no real friends, no children, no glory, no memoirs." Well, fuck them.
- Malcolm's speech to Ollie in the final episode about how his job has destroyed any chance of him having a personal life.
- Malcolm giving a pretty straightforward deconstruction of the stresses of his job to Ollie, which resonates with anyone who find themselves being changed as a person because of their job. Also dismissing anyone left thinking that they envy his position.Malcolm: You know Jackie fucking Chan about me. You know fuck all about me! I am totally beyond the realms of your fuckin' tousle-haired fuckin' dim-witted compre-fucking-hension. I don't just take this fucking job home, you know! I take this job home, it fucking ties me to the bed, and it fuckin' fucks me from arsehole to breakfast! Then it wakes me up in the morning with a cup full of piss slammed in my face, slaps me about the chops to make sure I'm awake enough so it can kick me in the fucking bollocks! This job has taken me in every hole in my fucking body. "Malcolm!", it's gone, you can't know Malcolm because Malcolm is not here! Malcolm fucking left the building fucking years ago! This is a fucking husk, I am a fucking host for this fucking job. Do you want this job? Yes? You do fucking want this job? Then you're gonna have to swallow this whole fucking life and let it grow inside you like a parasite, getting bigger and bigger and bigger until it fucking eats your insides alive and it stares out of your eyes and tells you what to do.
- Glenn's breakdown in Spinners and Losers.
- The look on Terri's face when Glenn calls her useless. She was probably the only person in the office that liked him and looks very hurt by it.
- Watching Nicola's many failures, and the cruel treatment she receives from Malcolm throughout the series, even if it's justified for the most part.
- Especially the heartbroken way she says "You're not gonna try and talk me down off the ledge, are you? Because I'm so tired, and the pavement just looks like a warm, splatty bed right now" to Ollie after Ben resigns.
- In season four, Glenn's efforts to try and get back into the party, and the way Malcolm turns a begging Glenn down and Ollie just watches.
- At the Inquiry, the way Glenn apologizes for bringing Ollie into politics.
- The series' Downer Ending, with Nicola destroyed, Malcolm being forced to resign and facing a possible prison sentence, Ollie having pretty much sold his soul, Stewart being sacked and Glenn quitting as a last effort to redeem himself.
- Malcolm's exit."No, I want to say something, I want to say something." (a long pause) "Doesn't matter." (and then we're treated to a long close-up of his face with an "I'm fucked" look)
- Also, the final scene is rather wistful, in its way. Everything just carries on.
- And then there's Glenn's exit. While simultaneously awesome, it's still most likely in vain because he's probably going to end up following Malcolm to jail.
- The final line in the show sums it up perfectly: "What a shit day."
- Malcolm's exit.
Tear Jerker / The Thick of It