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  • Watch the Abilify ad and you'll find yourself wanting to cuddle the little depression monster black-hole thing.
  • The polar bear in the Nissan Leaf commercial. The poor guy (or, possibly, girl) walks all the way from the arctic to the suburbs to give a man a hug for purchasing a Nissan Leaf and, as the ad implies, saving earth's polar ice caps from melting.
  • The Trix Rabbit. You got to feel bad for a rabbit that has had to put with years of selfish kids who won't let him have his Trix because "Trix Are For Kids."
    • When a poll was taken to see if the Trix Rabbit should get the Trix, it was almost unanimously agreed that he should. Also, there's several commercials that seem to go out of their way to make the kids look like jerks (one having the Rabbit actually buy a box with his own money and the kids steal it from him because "Trix are for kids")
    • Seth MacFarlane note  says this was why he did the Family Guy "Asian Trix" parody.
  • PC in the Mac vs. PC commercials. If you're thinking of the commercials in a plot-based kind of way, he seems to have gotten progressively desperate. One can only guess that he'll end the commercial runs Lucky Channel-style.
  • The pea in the old Batchelor's advert (UK), made to think about the old days on the farm, in the pod with all his friends, etc. The result? His own tears turn it to mush.
  • "Nobody ever pays me in gum!" Complete with "Aww..." from the other characters in the commercial.
  • The Geico commercial where the Drill Sergeant Nasty is a therapist. Can you blame his client for being tearful in the end?
  • The broken-hearted lamp sitting on the curb in the IKEA commercial that everyone feels so sorry for. Lampshaded (pun intended) by some guy coming in and saying the lamp has no feelings and asking why we feel bad about it.
    • If you've seen The Brave Little Toaster it's even more heart-wrenching.
    • There isn't even anything wrong with the lamp, it still works. Why throw it away?
    • Fortunately, sixteen years later a new commercial showed the lamp being taken in by a little girl who replaces the bulb and uses it for everything, with the same guy appearing at the end stating that it's not crazy to be happy for the lamp and it's good to reuse things.
  • The Quit Smoking ad with the young boy losing his mother in the busy public place. And his reaction doesn't help one bit.
  • Played for Laughs in this ad with a rooster crowing in the middle of the night, and the lady is annoyed, and makes it leave. Then you see it wandering in the streets, looking pitiful, crowing at a few doors, and it's raining. After a few scenes, it wanders off into the cold darkness. On the bright side, though, the rooster shows up in the end with her coworker, who looks on in sympathy, in the cubicle next to her.
  • The woman in this commercial for Jamster. Say how many of you feel sorry for her when her husband-to-be left her at the altar.
  • The kid in the NSPCC "Cartoon Boy" advert, who is repeatedly thrown across the house, used as an ashtray, and is thrown down the stairs by his own father.
  • The little salt shaker, and his friend the pepper shaker, from the Sidekicks ads. When they start crying, it's a big Tear Jerker
  • Played for Laughs (albeit dark laughs with The Pepsi Next commercial where it shows a mother fawning over her baby, until the father brings home the soda (marketed as having 60% less sugar than regular Pepsi but having the same taste) and they start fawning over it over their own child who's trying to get their attention by doing amazing things like dancing, playing guitar etc. You're gonna feel very sorry for him.
  • Mr. Whipple, who never stopped trying to keep customers from squeezing the Charmin.
    • It did not help that he had a weakness for doing the same.
  • This little gem features an old, run-down anthropomorphic red bus who is constantly shunned by his modern white cousins, forced to sleep by a garbage container instead of a spot on the parking lot, written on ("DIRTBAG"), despised by adults and minors alike. He finally has enough of his bad luck and decides to commit suicide by hopping into a junkyard crusher. His change of heart just seconds before being crushed and a save by a butterfly make us feel all warm and fuzzy inside... And then the crusher operator flips the switch again, killing him. The narrator tells us to "show no mercy to obsolete and decrepit vehicles", while we are shown a metallic red cube circled by the aforementioned butterfly. Just to drive the point home - or perhaps to ridicule the dead protagonist further - the arrow which was stuck in the rear of the bus through the whole video is still sticking out of the cube.
    • The ad, fittingly titled The Sad Bus, was funded by the Polish Ministry of Interior. It advertises an online bus verification system which supposedly lets you check the technical info and condition of any bus in the country. Most viewers failed to absorb this information, since they were still emotionally reeling from the punchline.
  • Surprisingly played for laughs in this Hey You Pikachu ad. You can't help but feel sorry for that poor dog who got fat, walks himself, and is starved for attention.
  • The Eggo Waf-full commercials. These are the strawberry and blueberry commercials. In both stories, the fillings are just minding their own business, living their lives (strawberry is just listening to music and blueberry is coming out of his house with his cat to feed his birds) and then a waffle attacks and both are swallowed whole in each story. Just to be clear, these fillings are just living their daily routines and appear as alive as any human and they're clearly horrified when the waffles attack. It's a miracle the apple-cinnamon commercial never happened.

    Comic Strips 
Here's a list of characters from newspaper comics \you just want to hug fervently:
  • Satchel Pooch from Get Fuzzy. He's constantly being abused both verbally and sometimes physically, particularly by Bucky the cat. Also, let's not forget the fact that Satchel's father is ashamed of him.
    • Bucky's British cousin Mac Manc McManx counts as an Iron Woobie. He's an Ugly Cute cat whose dialect almost no one can understand, his girlfriend Julie (who may or may not be abusive) beat up on him (giving him one nasty head injury), and he was mistaken for a terrorist and detained by airport security for a month. A MONTH? Someone give that poor cat a hug! He's a real Sad Clown, that's for sure!
  • Charlie Brown from Peanuts, obviously. Charles Schulz often described Charlie Brown as a wishy-washy, self-pitying sad sack, like him, and as a result, was insulted and laughed at by many of the characters in the strip.
    • Linus becomes this the second you take his security blanket from him.
      • Linus is this even WITH the blanket, especially in the first 15-20 years of the strip. When he's not hanging out with Charlie Brown, Linus can usually be found being emotionally and physically abused by his older sister, whether it's being clobbered for being sarcastic, or being forced to do a church pageant against his will, or trying to deprive him of his security blanket. That's probably why Linus is such good friends with Charlie Brown - woobies flock together in hopes of staying alive.
  • Wade Duck from U.S. Acres. He's just a senseless Chew Toy who always gets hurt "for the lulz". And later in the strips it feels as though the writers didn't even know what in the world to with the character other then to have him get hurt for no reason. And as Mr.Enter said, it's an admission of laziness creating such a shallow character. Charlie Brown and Linus would feel sorry for this Duck. Thankfully, it was toned down in the cartoon version and they even gave Wade more character.
  • Pig from Pearls Before Swine.

  • New The Daily Show correspondent Kristen Schaal is making a career out of being one of these. See here what happens to her when she learns the truth about Chinese female babies. In another segment, she was forced to strip off an article of clothing for every baseless accusation made against a presidential candidate. Needless to say, that episode, everybody found out that Kristen wears a Wonder Woman costume under her suit. Bizarrely enough, her stand-up act runs on this as well.

    Myths and Religion 
  • The Bible: There are several examples.
    • Lucifer from a Satan is Good perspective. Specially if God Is Good as well. Note that this perspective is actually from Paradise Lost. While there is indeed the word "Lucifer" in Isaiah 14:12–15 of the King James Bible translation, it means "morning star" and it addresses to the king of Babylon (presumably Nebuchadnezzar II). Satan in the canonical account is internationally a Hate Sink for being Always Chaotic Evil.
    • Isaac. His own father almost killed him. Later, his wife Rebecca and son Jacob conspire against him to trick him into giving Jacob the blessing.
    • Hagar becomes Abraham's concubine with his wife Sarah's consent and bears him a much-desired son, Ishmael. Later, once Sarah herself conceives and gives birth to Isaac, she has Abraham evict Hagar and Ishmael, who have to wander around in the wilderness before God intervenes.
    • Joseph. Lived a destructive relationship with his father and brothers, sold by his brothers to slavery, then wrongly accused of adultery, imprisoned and almost forgotten. It takes a while before he earns his happy ending.
    • Moses: He was forced to flee his homeland and came back to destroy it, abandoned his family to serve God, roamed around with the Isrealies for 40 years and finally died without making it to The Promised Land. Although in Gospels, Jesus is seen with Elijah and Moses on Mount Tabor during the Transfiguration. Yay! It took several hundred years, but the guy finally made it there!
    • Job had a good life overall, but there was a time when he lost everything, and then things went From Bad to Worse — he lost his children in a freak disaster. Then, his wife had only bad advice for him. And as if that weren't bad enough, his closest friends believed suffering to be karmic in nature, leaving him bewildered and wondering what he'd done to deserve all this. And it was all a test of character, which he passed, and his fortunes were restored. He must have been able to patch things up with his wife, too, because they had ten more children. Even Worse, this was a bet between God and Satan, to see if Job was genuinely righteous, or only because of all the stuff God had given him.
    • The Blessed Virgin Mary is sometimes this to Catholics. While they believe that She is very powerful and strong, having even Satan himself fear her, you can't possibly read about Her apparitions at Fatima without crying and wanting to spread devotion towards Her so that She may be loved. And then we find out that very few people actually listened to Her, thereby hindering her chances at having more children and bestowing graces upon them. She also had to watch her son die a painful and humiliating death for something he was innocent of. She also grew up in poverty.
    • Jesus's path to the cross included a kangaroo court, beatings and insults, scourging with a whip, a crown of thorns pressed into his scalp... and that was prior to the cross, the details of which you can easily find elsewhere if you're not squeamish. And on top of that the unimaginable non-physical pain of his first and only separation from God the Father and the bearing of the penalty for every single sin ever committed by humanity, past, present, and future. He suffered three kangaroo courts, one of them simply to mock him, and then further his punishment. Especially since The Bible presents him as knowing exactly what was going to happen. It's easy to think 'He's God, he could take it, right? He knew it all in advance, probably wasn't even afraid!" But then you consider that in the Garden of Gethsemane he was sweating blood and desperately praying to his father, asking if there was any other possible way, that he would take anything else if he didn't have to die like this...and his father said No. So he said "not my will, but your's be done" and went off to die, completely abandoned; "My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?"
  • The first Nephi of The Book of Mormon. Chosen by God to retrieve the brass plates, his older cynical brothers, Laman and Lemuel several times berate him. After he does retrieve said plates, he sees a vision of the coming of Jesus, and the fall of his nation. When all is well and done, his father dies, leaving him to be the leader of his family. Obviously, because of their jaded views of their second younger brother, they try to kill him, forcing him to relocate and eventually have to face his brothers and his descendants.
  • Orpheus is the premier Woobie of Greek mythology (if not in fiction in general). If he expressed such sadness after his wife's death that even Hades wept for him.
    • Hephaestus needs a hug. Stable, hard-working guy who's horribly ugly. Hera gave birth to him just to spite Zeus, and when she decided he was too ugly he was thrown off a cliff by his own mother. To top it off, he was married to a goddess who never cared about him and cheated on him regularly.
      • Played straight in God of War 3. Even Kratos was disgusted by the Olympians' treatment of him and his "daughter."
    • Cassandra. Just Cassandra.
    • Medea has a bit of this going on. She was a princess of a foreign country, and when Jason arrived to get the Golden Fleece, she fell in love with him and used her magic powers to help him accomplish his quest on the condition that he'd marry her. They wound up fleeing the country to escape her father's anger, and in a lot of stories Medea had to kill her brother to distract the king long enough for them to get away. Okay, all well and good. But fast-forward a few years, and now she's a foreigner alone in xenophobic Greece aside from her husband and two children, estranged from her family and friends, and her husband has just announced that he's leaving her to marry the (younger, prettier) princess of Corinth for political gain and oh, by the way, she's going to have to be exiled from the country now but Jason is totally going to try to let her come back to be his mistress. Medea was not pleased at all and poisoned the princess before fleeing the country... so the Corinthians killed her kids.
    • Some versions of Medusa are this in a nutshell. When you're punished by being made a gorgon because Poseidon couldn't keep it in his pants and raped you in the temple of Athena, let's just say you definitely deserve a hug, even if the hugger is likely to get poisoned or turned to stone for his or her trouble.
    • Let's not forget Ariadne. Some versions have Dionysus force Theseus to abandon her, while others claim he did it willingly. But either way, poor girl! On the other hand, her sister Phaedra had it maybe even worse...
    • And oh yeah, there's also Hercules. While we can understand that Hera hated Zeus's infidelity and Hercules had his own anger issues, it was really terrible how she persecuted Hercules like that. It's not like he could help that he was her husband's illegitimate son...
    • Another good contender and also a bastard child of Zeus is Dionysus. His mother burnt to death while pregnant with him because Hera tricked her into asking to see Zeus' true form, to start with. Then after his second birth, his father hid him at relatives of his mother's, who tried to throw Hera's scent off by passing him as a girl, which went well... for all of three years, when Hera drove them insane, made them kill their own son, and when they got to their senses, they killed themselves in despair, all the while Dionysus watched, only narrowly saved by his father turning him into a goat. Next he was sent to Mount Nysa, had some friends among the satyrs and nymphs, till one day a satyr died when trying to get him a new plant, which after his death Dionysus promptly made the first grape. Then when he tried to spread his knowledge, the king of the first place they went to killed many of his followers and almost killed Dionysus himself. After this Dionysus changed his tune from "let me teach you about wine" to "I WILL teach you about wine or I will make you insane or turn you into whatever I feel like right now. Your pick."
  • Osiris from Egyptian Mythology. The poor guy was tricked and murdered by his brother, and later had his corpse torn apart by him too.

    Puppet Shows 
  • The Muppet Show:
    • Kermit the Frog. He tries so hard to be cheerful, friendly and positive that when he does become sad or even just exasperated by the madness going on around him, you just want to give him a hug.
    • His friend Fozzie Bear probably falls under this too. He just wants to be funny, but he keeps falling on his face.
    • Don't forget Gonzo! In the first two series and the first film especially. He gets booed off stage every week, has a perminantly sad expression on his face and has his heart broken by Madaline Kahn. I mean, just watch these. Not to mention this clip from Jim Henson's memorial/funeral

  • Martin Crieff in Cabin Pressure. The poor guy lives in an attic, lives in Perpetual Poverty and doesn't get paid to fly, but he does anyway because it's the only thing he's wanted to do since he was six years old. His father always disapproved of his dreams, and passed away four months before Martin got his pilot's license and proved his father wrong. Oh, and what does he actually do to support himself? He does removals with the van his father bequeathed him in his will, rather than the 5000 pounds each of his siblings got. So, even though he did become a pilot, his father was still right about him. All of this is played for laughs.

    Theme Parks 


    Visual Novels 
  • While quite a few characters from Animamundi Dark Alchemist end up with surprising and sympathetic development that gives them a touch of Woobieness, poor St. Germant fits the trope right down to the E. Despite being completely kind and sincere (and let's stop beating around this shonen-ai bush: cute) - or perhaps because of such - he's arguably the most tormented soul of the entire game, subjected to such horrors as being coerced, tortured, drugged, molested, dominated, and brainwashed by the disturbingly-psychotic Big Bad as a means of getting back at the protagonist.
  • There are those who find Shirou Emiya from Fate/stay night a woobie, though it's a little odd. In the present, his life seems mostly normal but as a child he was the sole survivor of the battlefield that destroyed a large section of Fuyuki. His parents were killed and he saw hundreds of people die in front of him before being saved by Kiritsugu. In the present, this has left scars on him that even he is only marginally aware of that drive his entire life leading him to have a rather casual attitude towards death and having no sense of self preservation at all. Whether or not this is truly pitiful is a matter of opinion: The manner in which he deals with his life is much more proactive than the standard woobie.
    • And there's Saber. She gives up any chance of a normal life, and spends 12 years fighting constant wars on the front lines and ruling Britain flawlessly. She doesn't develop a personality because she decides Kings shouldn't be swayed by them. And then she's betrayed by everyone and left to die alone by her own kingdom for being too good a ruler. AND THEN she becomes a Servant to erase herself from existence because she doesn't think she did well enough. Girl really could use a hug.
    • And then there's Sakura Matou, who is probably the most woobie of all of the cast. She's separated from her family and adopted by a family of former Magi against her will, and is "trained" to become the successor by being sent into a room full of horrible worms every night implant themselves inside her every night since she's five years old. Her adoptive brother Shinji Matou, who's not quite right in the head himself, physically, mentally, and sexually abuses her every day. This all comes back to haunt the cast in the route she is Heroine in, Heaven's Feel. Lets just say that karma is a bitch...
  • Kaori Yae of Tokimeki Memorial 2, very much so. The girl is so deeply hurt, depressed and completely closed to others after the cruel Break the Cutie moment she endured before the protagonist meets her, it's incredible that her parents haven't took her to a psychiatrist already. Seeing her gradually coming back to her former self through patient affection and care from the protagonist, thus turning her into a walking factory of Crowning Moments Of Heartwarming (and conversely, a powerful source of Player Punch if you fail to put her out of her Heroic BSoD), is what made her, with good reason, the absolute Ensemble Dark Horse of this game.
  • Aeka of Yume Miru Kusuri is the least popular girl at her school. The Alpha Bitch and her friends torment her constantly, humiliating her and attacking her with tasers. Her classmates refuse to get involved, the teacher ignores everything, and the main character's love for her is the only thing keeping her from committing suicide.

    Web Animation 
  • Camp Camp:
    • Gwen. Unlike David who at least loves Camp Campbell even though he's subjected to frequent pain and abuse, Gwen's not only humiliated by the campers, but she hates being a counselor and has very real anxiety issues from her inability to find another job and the supposed uselessness of her degrees. In "Gwen Gets a Job", it shows just how many rejection letters she's gotten, and when Max finds out, he blackmails her with the threat of getting her fired. She even breaks down crying at the end of the episode because of what her life's been reduced to, and even though David's able to build her confidence back up, she still fails at getting another job at her most recent interview.
    • Poor Jasper died while he was at camp and can never leave Spooky Island until his body is put to rest, which probably means his parents never knew what happened to him.
  • Doll Face. Poor thing. Probably comes second to WALL-E on the 'robots you most want to hug tightly' list.
  • Jake from the Minecraft Machinima Newbies has generated a lot of much deserved sympathy among fans for the way he is treated in the show. He shows up as a very friendly player who is using the Mine Little Pony mod to look like a cyan Pegasus. The newbie is afraid of him and Joe tells him to "Just ignore him and he'll go away." After Jake continually tries to get their attention, Joe demands that he go away and that nobody likes him. Jake plays this off like its okay, and is later seen alone in his house playing "The Way it is" on his music box.
  • Homestar Runner:
    • Strong Sad. Though some of his status as a No Respect Guy is fairly amusing, it's hard not to feel sorry for him given the regular abuse, much of it physical and some of it life-threatening, his brothers put him through, the fact that he has no real friends at all (with Marzipan seeming to hang out with him mainly because she feels sorry for him and Homsar being too insane to notice), and his chronic depression—though this is dampened slightly by the fact that he sometimes feels the need to depress everyone else too, mostly early on. One very obscure Easter Egg makes it even worse, by showing that he and Strong Bad once got along.
    • Also Coach Z, no doubt thanks to his Flanderization from a well-meaning, but somewhat quirky coach into a colourblind, forgetful, perverted moron who thinks he's a mother. In Decemberween Short Shorts, it's been shown that he spends Decemberween locking himself in his locker and drinking nothing but Listerine. Just wait until you see Baby Coach Z. The 2009 Halloween 'toon has Strong Sad alternating between wishing horrible dooms on his "friends" after not being invited to any of their parties, and staging a surprise party for himself with cardboard cutouts of them. However, even he can't come up with a doom for Coach Z besides being Coach Z. "No sense in beating a dead horse."
    • Reynold from the Cheat Commandos might fit the bill also.
    • Parodied with the Strong Bad-created character Lil' Brudder. Explicitly designed to be as Woobie as possible — a hard-working, optimistic, unipod dog "with the heart of a champion" — so Strong Bad can abuse others with tales of suffering. However, even Strong Bad feels sorry for the guy. His catchphrase is "I can make it on my own!"
    • A case could be made for What's Her Face in Teen Girl Squad. Since the series is based on off-the-wall (even by Homestar Runner levels) humor centered on the characters dying in silly ways on a regular basis, this is saying something.
    • New Paper. It's a Replacement Scrappy in-universe; its first five appearances all feature Strong Bad mocking it basically for not being The Paper. It also seems to be rather prone to errors during this early period; in those five emails it comes down prematurely, runs a calibration test when it was supposed to print the Fourth-Wall Mail Slot email link thingy, and upon a request from Strong Bad to disappoint him it falls out of the printer. Then in the next email it prints The Paper's striped pattern and perforated edges onto itself to please Strong Bad (who seems to think it's trying to impersonate The Paper, but it "does make [him] feel a little better"). Altogether very Moe. Mind you, a handful of emails later the New Paper aids and abets Homestar's hostile takeover of the email-show niche, which makes it a little harder to sympathise with it. You could see that as the New Paper trying to get back at its verbally-abusive master, but that just makes things worse.
  • A few people who watched Salad Fingers think he is just too creepy, and others find him creepy but also endearing. The last episode has a scene where he's crying and some fans said they forgot he's scary because they felt bad for him.
  • Allison Amber suffers heavily from this trope in Sonichu: The Animated Series, a series of web cartoons that both rip off and rip on the infamous Sonichu webcomic. Poor Allison is depicted as a Beleaguered Assistant who somehow tries to deal with the fallout of the insane decisions Christian Chandler makes as Mayor of CWCville, like his order that the CWCville waterworks circulate orange Fanta soda pop instead of actual water, which is the main reason some part of CWCville is always on fire. Even that's not as bad when Chris essentially forces Allison to clean him up whenever he soils himself, which is quite often. Allison appears to cope with having to clean Chris up by muttering over and over how much she hates her life, while her face has a glazed, vacant expression.
  • Alfred's Playhouse is about a traumatized, mentally ill dog named Alfred Alfer, who tries to forget about his abusive childhood by imagining himself in a happy fantasy world.
  • The Most Popular Girls in School: If she wasn't such a Deadpan Snarker, Bridget Tice would be one. She has a pretty depressing life, when you think about it.
    • Ashley Katchadourian due to the Disproportionate Retribution she suffers in episode 11 and 13.
      • It gets even worse because of Episode 31 when we learn she was specifically set up to be blamed by Jenna Darabond so she could get Ashely's then-boyfriend Justin and has been The Chew Toy for the whole series. In episode 32 she asks to be left out of the ongoing strife between Mackenzie and Jenna, and Trisha speaks on her behalf. In episode 33, we learn from Ashley's little sister Brooklyn that Ashley has been depressed for a while and their mom is trying to help her.
    • Jenna Dapananian- she just wants someone to make out with her, among other things. She eventually gets her wish, though.
  • In a Heartbeat has Sherwin, the orange-haired kid who has a crush on Johnathan, the most popular boy in school. He really gets messed up near the end when he pulls his (Living) heart (Who, in turn, was pursuing him) from him and it breaks, exposing his outing. But don't worry. You know they get together in the end.
    • Also, Johnathan. After Sherwin gets outed by his heart and exits, everyone in the hallway just stares at him, thinking of him as an outcast for being Sherwin's crush.
  • The titular character of Nomad of Nowhere: The Nomad is always being persecuted and followed for being the only known magical being in the world. Even when he's trying to use his magic to help others. And because he is what he is, even the few people who actually see him in a positive light have sends him away, due to not wanting to attract any attention from Bounty Hunters and other dangerous and powerful people who want the Nomad.
  • Happy Tree Friends:
    • Flaky often gains sympathy from fans due to her being, unlike just about every other character in the show who is blissfully happy until their eventual gory death, perpetually terrified of everything. This is not enough for her to escape her own inevitable grisly fate, however. (The jury is still out on her actual gender too... However most of the creators, most notably on the DVD commentaries, refer to Flaky as a female).
    • Petunia and Sniffles tend to die in almost every episode they appear in, typically in the most horrible ways possible ("Wishy Washy" and "Tongue in Cheek" being the most infamous examples).