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Being a Long Runner, Springfield's dysfunctional yellow-skinned family is bound to put us into helpless tears every now and then.


  • The Simpsons: "Lisa's Substitute", "Bart The Lover", and both episodes with Mona Simpson: "Mother Simpson" and "My Mother the Carjacker". If all goes well, they'll pull this off with the next episode "Mona Leaves-a" where she dies.
    • Don't worry, "Mona Leaves-a" is even sadder. Homer couldn't forgive her because of all the times she left him.When he wants to forgive her, he realizes that she's dead. It gets worse after he does a nature plan as her last requests and foils Mr.Burn's plot. Then at the end, he release her ashes and triggers a heartwarming flashback. I ended up crying like a baby at that ending.
      • I was crying at the first commercial break. Homer: Mom, are you asleep...asleep with your eyes open? (worried, tearful) Mom... MOM? 'cut to commercial.'. Not made any better by the fact that this episode premiered on Mother's Day.
    • Perhaps even more heartbreaking is Abe's reaction. Abe never stopped hating Mona for abandoning him (which is why he lied to Homer saying his mom died while Homer went to the movies as a teenager, even though "Mother Simpson" revealed that Homer was only seven or eight when his mom left after the botched biological warfare lab raid), to the point that he openly bragged that he would "dance on her grave". But when she does die, Abe solemnly declares that he no longer feels like dancing.
    • On "Mother Simpson", the ending image of Homer sitting alone on the boot of his car for hours, well into the night, is possibly the saddest image this troper has ever seen (beaten only by Futurama's Jurassic Bark).
    • There was also this fact. At that time, Fox started ending shows with split-screen credits with ads for Fox shows playing over it. The Simpsons staff had to fight tooth-and-nail to have the full studio credits play over that beautiful shot. And we're glad they won.
    • Not to mention "Lisa on Ice" with the climactic montage of Bart and Lisa remembering all the times they actually cared about each other and deciding to throw the hockey game and forgive each other (leading to them skating around the rink while the angry townspeople burn the hockey arena to the ground).
    • And the end of "And Maggie Makes Three". He's doing it for her...
      • This video, while in Spanish, keeps the emotion of that one.
      • Earlier in that episode has another sad one: Homer quitting his beloved job as a Pin Monkey and going back to the Power Plant. Most heartwrenching is the guys at the alley pitched in and bought Homer a nice jacket as a going away present but the acid rain near the plant dissolved it immediately after he got it.
    • This troper was going through a tough emo phase when she was younger. When she saw that paper say "You are Lisa Simpson", this troper couldn't help tearing up.
    • The ending of "Lisa's First Word", in which Maggie says her first word, "Daddy", reduced this troper's dad to tears. Understandably.
      • What's even sadder is the fact that all throughout the story, Bart and Lisa (as babies/toddlers) never called Homer "Dad" or "Daddy" and the one time a Simpson kid does call Homer "Daddy," he misses it (even though the writers on the DVD commentary said that they had to go through a lot of takes to make Elizabeth Taylor's "Daddy" line sound like something a one-year-old child would say and not a 20-year-old seductress perched on the lap of a squirming, blushing man as she's caressing his face and nuzzling his neck. Thank God for the clip from "Gump Roast" where Liz Taylor's "Daddy" line was redubbed with Nancy Cartwright's voice).
    • Does no one remember when Bleeding Gums Murphy died? That episode had several tear-jerker moments: Lisa losing her friend, her desperate attempts to try to make people know who he was and remember him, and eventually Bart of all people selflessly donating his own money (which he won in a lawsuit over Krusty's crappy cereal) to help her cause when he sees how much she is hurting, and shrugging it off as no big deal. And the ending, when Lisa jams one last time with Bleeding Gums' ghostly image in the clouds to Carole King's "Jazz Man"...all very moving. Although the character's overall lack of importance in the series is lampshaded in later episodes, more than once.
    • Krusty mournfully revealing that his father never accepted him becoming a clown and hated him for it. Its even treated as a Tear Jerker in story, as Bart and Lisa are so moved by Krusty's story that they resolve to convince Krusty's father to accept who he is.
      • Your Mileage May Vary on this one, but if you watched the above episode, then you'll most likely bawl at the end of a related one ("Today I Am A Clown" from season 15). Because of the problems with his father, Krusty never had a Bar Mitzvah, and as such must have one as an adult. Most of the episode is Krusty using the situation for profit with a silly televisioned Bar Mitzvah, but after he sees his father's disappointment, he tells him they'll do a traditional one anyway. The episodes ends with the aforementioned ceremony and a heart warming moment between father and son. Seeing them like that after all those years of bad blood is really tear inducing.
      • Also Krusty-related: during the introduction to his comeback special, the modified "Send in the Clowns" duet he sings with Sideshow Mel can easily bring out the tears, rivaling the original song in the process. "They're al-re-dy heeeeere"
    • Maude's death, and Flanders' reaction.
      • "I'm Goin' To Praiseland" is mostly a giant tear jerker for this reason. The whole episode is Ned trying to move on while doing one last thing for her -- i.e., creating the Biblical amusement park she had in her sketch book (which flops thanks to Homer and Flanders being accused of mauling children who nearly blew up the park by lighting candles near a leaking gas line). The only happy (or heartwarming) part was at the end, when Flanders and Rachel (the Christian country singer who wanted to date Flanders) team up to erase Maude's indent in the sheets.
    • "Lisa, It's Your Birthday", for being only a minute long within the episode "Stark Raving Dad", can cause tears of joy out of practically anyone. It's now more depressing than it should be in light of Michael Jackson's death.
    • The scene in "Bart the Mother", when Bart tells Marge that even though everyone thinks the lizards are monsters, he still loves them. He thinks Marge won't understand, but Marge whispers "run" and then blocks the door so Bart, Chirpy Boy, and Bart, Jr. can escape.
  • The movie: after being run out of Springfield by an angry mob, the Simpsons escape to Alaska, but when the EPA plans to level Springfield into the next Grand Canyon, the family ( minus Homer, who chose to stay behind ) goes back, and here comes the tearjerking part: Marge taped a tearful goodbye to Homer over their wedding video, prompting Homer to go on a journey to help his family, and he lands on a chunk of ice that drifts in the water in the shape of a heart which then breaks ( mood imagery FTW ).
    • Read it in it's depressing details:

 Marge: Okay, here goes. Homer, I've always stood up for you. When people point out your flaws, I always say, "Well, sometimes you have to stand back to appreciate a work of art."

Homer: Way back.

Marge: Lately, what's keeping us together is my ability to overlook everything you do. And I overlook these things because...

Homer: Because?

Marge: Well, that's the thing. I just...I just don't know how to finish that sentence anymore. So I'm leaving with the kids to help Springfield, and we're never coming back. And to prove to myself that this is the end... I taped this over our wedding video. * tears up* Good-bye, Homie. [cuts to their wedding dance, with their song playing]

      • This scene was so sad that Julie Kavner (the English voice actress for Marge and the women in her family: Patty, Selma, her mom, Jackie, and Great Aunt Gladys) had to record a large number of times.
  • This troper has a tender heart and couldn't stop crying in the season 2 episode "One Fish, Two Fish, Blowfish, Blue Fish" because Homer only had 24 hours to live and wanted to do everything he never got a chance to do which include: Having a man-to-man talk with Bart (and teaching him how to shave, with hilarious results), listen to Lisa play her sax (and singing along to "When the Saints Go Marching In"), and enjoy Father-Son time with Abe. It didn't help when it really looked like he had died in the middle of the night.

  Marge: "Homer! Your drool is still warm! (crying) You're alive!"

  • Despite being despised for screwing with show continuity (see Dethroning Moment of Suck (Darth Wiki)/The Simpsons), the scene in the episode That 90's Show where Homer and Marge are dividing up their belongings. Marge brings out a Beanie Baby octopus and says, "Who gets Cutie-pus?" Homer tells her, "I just want a tentacle," He proceeds to pull one off, and all the beans flow out of the octopus as 'Bittersweet Symphony' plays in the background. This troper has a lump in her throat just typing it.
  • Bluella the whale's death in The Squirt and the Whale.
  • There was an episode where an artist drew an unattractive caricature of Lisa, and it caused her to become depressed and think that she was ugly. Seeing her lying on her bed sobbing over it really got to this troper, because I've always been self-conscious over my appearance. Later in the episode, Bart of all people cheers her up by telling her something that is very hard for him as her brother to admit: that she's not ugly. Coming from Bart, Lisa knew it had to be the truth. Then she hugged him and I proceeded to cry.
  • In addition to the above mentioned scenes from Lisa's Sax, there's also the new inscription on her new sax and then the montage of her and her sax set to the song Baker Street. Made more of a tear jerker ever since I read that this is widely considered the last truly great episode of The Simpsons. It didn't occur to me that it was such then, but it truly is one of the last sweet, emotionally resonant episodes (that I saw, I stopped after season 12 or so)
  • The majority of the episode "The Secret War Of Lisa Simpson" where Bart and Lisa go to military school (Bart because of his latest prank [unleashing a massive soundwave throughout the town using a row of police bullhorns]; Lisa, because public school isn't challenging enough for her) has its moments, but one of the biggest moments is the end of the first act where Lisa is alone from the other male cadets who despise her for receiving one of their cabins because she's a girl, is sitting alone listening to a recording of Marge singing "You Are My Sunshine" and tearing up while listening to it.
    • Made even more of a tear jerker for this troper who has had problems with homesickness while away at camp and knows what it's like to want to go home but to not want to give up so easily.
  • The recent episode "Oh Brother Where Bart Thou?" Bart had this Troper tearing up when he asks Marge for a little brother so he could bond with him the way Lisa does with Maggie.
  • Homer's speech to Lisa before her wedding, in my all-time favorite episode: "Lisa's Wedding"

 Homer: Little Lisa, Lisa Simpson. You know, I always felt you were the best thing my name ever got attached to. Since the time you learned to pin your own diapers, you've been smarter than me.

Lisa: Oh, Dad...

Homer: No, no, let me finish. I just want you to know I've always been proud of you. You're my greatest accomplishment and you did it all yourself. You helped me understand my own wife better and taught me to be a better person, but you're also my daughter, and I don't think anybody could have had a better daughter than you...

Lisa: Dad, you're babbling.

Homer: See? You're still helping me.

  • The episode "Bart Sells His Soul" is undeniably one of the darkest episode of "The Simpsons" ever produced. It's also one of the most heartwrenching. When Bart starts praying to God that he be given back his soul, something you don't expect a hellion like Bart to do...gah, this troper is tearing up just typing about it.
    • This is made even more powerful afterward when Bart's soul paper drops in front of him, and he sees Lisa who explains that she bought it for him with the change in her piggybank, causing Bart to hug her and give her a kiss on the cheek.
  • "I Love Lisa" is Ralph Wiggum's Crowning Moment of Awesome. After Lisa has ripped his heart in two, he prepares to play George Washingtom for the President's Day show, with Lisa as his Martha. He tosses the valentine she gave him into the fire...and gives the performance of his friggin' life.
    • George's final words:

 Ralph: (as George) Dear wife, if I could take but one treasure with me to the next life, it would be your tender kiss. (He kisses Lisa's hand and "passes on" as she weeps.)

Selma...or Patty: Mmmhmm...now THAT'S a man. (This troper whole-heartedly agrees with this sentiment.)

    • What about before that when Ralph's heart was broken on national television during the Krusty Show? It gets this troper every time.

  Bart (operating a VCR with a tape of the Krusty Show sequence): Look Lisa, you can actually pinpoint the second where his heart breaks.

  • In "Bart The Lover", all of Mrs. Krabappel's scenes are quite heart-wrenching, particularly the one in which she is seen waiting for her non-existent date as the restaurant closes.
  • Marge finally gives up on Bart, and even Milhouse has gotten fed up with him, to the extent that he got his mom to take Bart out of the house. As she does this Bart turns and, in a rather vulnerable moment for him, asks if he can hang around with Ms. Van Houten and do Mom stuff. After a few moments of that, Bart reaches across the table and is practically begging her:

 Tell me I'm good.

Put that together with someone with confidence issues, and...excuse me.
  • The aftermath of Marge getting mugged in "Strong Arms Of The Ma". She makes it back to her car in shock and then breaks down crying in front of her kids. Also a case of Mood Whiplash, seeing as it was a dark turn after the silly opening of Wolfcastle selling his stuff and Homer fitting everything into his car, TETRIS-style.
  • This troper always gets a little teary with the last lines of "The Way We Was", as in the flashback, Marge is driving Homer home from prom:

 Flashback Homer: I've got a problem. Once you stop this car, I'm going to hug you, and kiss you, and then I'll never be able to let you go.

Present Homer: (nuzzling his wife's neck) And I never have.

    • The scene where Homer is crying on the steps at prom and explains to Marge that his belief that they belong together is the only thing he's ever been sure of and so he can't see how he can be wrong really gets this troper. Largely because I sympathize in heaps.
  • "Home Sweet Diddly Ho Dum Doodly", especially when seeing the heartbroken Simpson kids being taken away. Doubles into a Crowning Moment of Heartwarming at the end, when Homer and Marge rescue their kids, and Maggie, who had been influenced the most by the Flanders Family, decides to go back to Marge just by seeing her.

 EXTRA: Simpson kids miss Mom and Dad.

  • "Moaning Lisa": Lisa, who has been depressed for days and finds a friend in Bleeding Gums Murphy, is told by Marge to repress her unhappiness and go out into the world smiling over nothing. When Lisa goes to school, boys being using her to do her homework and Mr. Largo (the music teacher) tells her to play the saxophone the way he wants her to play. Marge gets upset, drags Lisa back in the car, and tells her that she was wrong about being a Stepford Smiler and Lisa should be free to express her emotions, with Lisa finally smiling over the fact that someone now understands her. While the episode's Aesop carries some Unfortunate Implications that it's okay to be clinically depressed the way Lisa was in this episode, it'll still make you weep with joy.
    • YMMV about that being Unfortunate Implications; as a clinically depressed person myself, I find that episode incredibly touching. There's nothing wrong with being depressed. It's just a thing that happens, and while its effects are bad, it's not bad to be depressed.
  • In "I, D'oh Bot", when (Snowball II is hit by a car). It probably didn't help that I had lost my kitten to a car accident not long before.
  • "Midnight Towboy". There's a reason I wanted to create a new troped called "Marge Simpson Effect" for characters whose tears are a Tear Jerker on their own: when Maggie starts acting as an adult (she does it all the time, but now that tract is given more importance), Marge, after seeing how independent her child has become, goes to the kitchen and starts cuddling a bag of potatoes while saying "at least you still need me"... and then she tears up alongside the audience.
  • "The Blunder Years", Waylon Smithers Sr.'s Heroic Sacrifice of going into a heavily irradiated reactor to shut it down and save the town and his baby son. It parodied the infamous Window Love scene from Star Trek The Wrath Of Kahn.
    • It's also a rare Pet the Dog moment for Mr. Burns. After Smithers Sr.'s death, he becomes the closest thing Jr. has to a father.
      • A bit of Unfortunate Implications though, seeing as Smithers is revealed to be gay for Mr. Burns.
      • That last bit was hinted in the same episode to stem from Mr. Burns telling Smithers his father was killed by a tribe of Amazon women.
  • In "A Star is Burns", there's (the ironically named) Pukahontas, the film Barney did about how his alcoholism has ruined his life leaves this troper in tears.
  • I can't believe that no one has mentioned the episode in which Homer eats Hans Moleman's last meal after Homer got arrested for buying beer for minors (even though Kearney is presumably over 21) and making fun of Marge while she was working the beat as a police officer (season six's "The Springfield Connection"). It wouldn't be so bad, but given that Moleman said, "But [Homer] ate my last meal," in such a pitiful voice and was about to be executed (even though he's in a local jail and local jails don't do executions -- Moleman even asks if executions are allowed in a local jail, with Reverend Lovejoy silencing him with the line, "From this point on, no talking."), that is just plain horrendous.
  • "Lisa's Pony": Lisa giving up the one thing she loves (a pony) after learning that Homer is taking a second job at the Kwik-E-Mart just so he can pay for the upkeep.
    • also, the way that stern English lady that kept the manege where the pony was kept, is also tear indcuing. She says, 'Although my face doesn't show it, I am tearing from the inside.' Even she still has a heart!
  • The episode "Homer Alone", where he loses Maggie. He just gets more and more desperate and tearful as the episode goes on and when he finally finds her he's so happy he kisses Wiggum. That and the whole family Glomping Marge when she gets back from her vacation.
  • "Eeny Teeny Maya Moe":

 Moe: Who'd have thought such a little woman could make me feel so big?

    • Not to mention Homer's speech before that:

 Homer: You'll remember that somebody loved you once. And somebody could love you again! And that'll make you smile.

  • Old Money: The final scenes. Throughout the whole episode, we seem glimpes of the retirement home, and how it's run down and almost in shambles. AT the end, Grandpa decides the best think to do with the money he inhereted from Bea was to donate everything to the home. The expresions of joy and excitement amongst these people, who don't have much longer, is a true tear jerker.
    • How about when Abe was at Bea's funeral, he laments that he missed being with her during her final moments due to being with the Simspons on another gone-wrong trip. He's so mad at Homer, he disowns him.
  • I actually found Bart's complete mental breakdown in the Season 18 episode "The Boys of Bummer" to be very depressive (as well as being a Dethroning Moment of Suck). The entire town turns on him for missing an easy catch during a Little League game and Bart goes insane to the point that he is Driven to Suicide. When his suicide attempt lands him in the hospital, the town still mocks and berates him -- until Marge steps in and tells them to stop and help him raise his self-esteem.

 Bart: See? I hate me too! Now we can all be friends again!

  • One very recent episode had Lisa learning magic from an older, retired magician. There were two points in which I wanted to cry: The magician and Lisa are talking about his late wife,and he says this: "The only magic we couldn't make was a child." At the end of the episode, he's huffing ether (as a painkiller) and sees his late wife as she looked in her youth. He says that maybe he's had too much, but as her apparition fades, he (paraphrasing) says: "Aw, the hell with it," takes in more ether so his wife stays, and they dance as a very sweet song plays.
    • This Troper also teared up when Nelson prays to God for Lisa to be safe: "God, if you don't bring my Lisa back safe, ants will burn tonight!" It was very sweet...
  • From "The Itchy & Scratchy & Poochie Show" where Homer is trying to keep them from killing Poochie off, and he makes a speech: "Hello Itchy. I know we kind of got off on the wrong foot, and that there are a lot of people who don't like me. I know that I can come off as a little proactive sometimes, and for that, I'm sorry. But if you can find a little place in your heart for the little dog no one wanted, I know we can make people laugh, and cry, as we grow old together."
    • Which gets blasted down when the episode featuring this speech gets hastily edited to make it look like Poochie was really an alien who returned to his home planet and died on the way back. In fact, that part is more heart-breaking than Homer's speech, as Homer poured his heart and soul into supporting something he liked, but no one else did ("rooting for the underdog," so to speak) and, in the end, it was all in vain.
  • I can't believe nobody mentioned it before, am I the only one brought to tears by Selma singing You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman to her iguana? I mean, both Patty and Selma are mean and alone, but that episode we see how alone Selma feels, and finally she is happy with just an iguana.
    • It seems worth mentioning that the scene was a parody of an episode of Murphy Brown, with Jub-Jub standing in for an actual baby. Even the writers have admitted that this is one of the most esoteric jokes in the show's history, but if you do get the reference, it kinda detracts from the Tear Jerker-ness a bit. So, in short, YMMV.
  • The Simpsons getting evicted from Springfield in the 500th episode, then the entire town missing them and deciding to move to The Outlands with them, along with the end message thanking the viewer for staying on the air long enough to reach 500 episodes, then advising them to go outside and get some fresh air before complaining about how bad the episode sucked.
    • The couch gag for that episode, showing all the couch gags from the past 23 years (not counting repeats and episodes in which couch gags were not present) as a mosaic that says "500" and concluding on one with Homer and Bart choking each other in hilarious fashion. If you're one of those viewers who abandoned the show years ago due to Seasonal Rot (or outright boredom), seeing all those couch gags bring back memories of when the show was worth watching (also counts as a Crowning Moment of Awesome because it truly is amazing that the staff still remembers all those couch gags and has laid them out in a beautiful way).
  • Bart being abused by Lisa in "On A Clear Day I Can't See My Sister", especially considering it was a case of Disproportionate Retribution. Then at the end when they reconciled.
  • Homer getting kicked out of the house when Marge finds the photo of him dancing with the stripper Princess Kashmir in "Homer's Night Out."
    • Homer's speech about how women should be respected and not treated like sex objects after he finds himself on a stage show with showgirls and sees Marge in the audience (who thinks that Homer is, once again, exploiting women in front of his own son).
  • Homer nearly being Driven to Suicide in "Homer's Odyssey". The suicide letter he writes is just gut-wrenching.
  • The ending to "Life On The Fast Lane" where Marge decides to blow off her affair with Jacques the bowler and visit Homer at work (later repeated in the first clip show).
  • In the first clip show, Homer is in a coma because of one of Bart's pranks. After remembering some good times they had together, Bart breaks down and tearfully admits he pulled said prank. This gets Homer to wake up...and strangle him.
  • "Bart Gets An F": The part where, after Bart goes through Hell to try and pass his history exam, still fails it. He breaks down crying, telling Krabappel that he actually studied and took the assignment seriously. Anyone who has had this problem in school or any part of life will feel Bart's pain.

 Bart: This is the best I will ever be, and I still failed.

    • It gets better when Bart cites that his failure was similar to one George Washington encountered in a failed battle and Krabappel raises Bart's grade since he showed Krabappel that he did learn something, then it becomes hilarious when Bart kisses Krabappel, shouts to the world that he finally passed a test, then realizes he kissed his own teacher and spits in disgust.
  • During a Blair Witch-esque like scene from "The Ziff Who Came To Dinner" has Lisa being frightened beyond compare and bursting into tears as she speaks to the camera.

 Lisa: If I don't make it out alive, I love you Mom and Dad. Maggie, you can have my books. And Bart, I'll See You in Hell, you booger-eating wuss. Yeah that's right, WE ALL KNOW!!!

  • A scene in Marge vs. SSCCTG where the backward "R" in the "Toys R Us" sign is turned to its correct direction as dozens of children watch in horror. The sad part is Milhouse's expression, mimicking the famous "Weeping Parisian" photograph.
  • Bill Plympton's couch gag from "Beware My Cheating Bart", which stars the couch and the ups and downs of its relationship with Homer. Surprisingly, it's actually pretty sad for a couch gag.
  • "A Totally Fun Thing Bart Will Never Do Again". Though Bart was still a sociopath in that episode (though he thought he was doing a good thing), you can't help but feel sorry for him when he feels his one fun week on a family cruise will end because...well believe me, we've all had that feeling.
    • Don't forget the ending. Bart learning a lesson about enjoying the present then flashforward to many years in the future where an elderly dying Bart looks back at his memories. First time I teared up during a Simpson episode in a long time.
  • Lisa getting devastated over being the most unpopular student in "Lisa Goes Gaga".
    • Lady Gaga telling Moe theres no hope for him and then he gets ran over by a train. It's Played for Laughs, but damn.
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