Why did you have to make me cry?

On Friday, a big group of CreCommers went down to the King’s Head Pub. On my end of the table, somehow the topic of conversation shifted to movies or shows that have made us cry unexpectedly.

Now, this is a topic that I am all too familiar with. Apparently, I’m an emotional dude who can be easily affected by good writing and amazing song selections. But it’s typically not drama’s or highly emotional shows or movies that get me. Instead, it has been comedies that have suckered me in with light-hearted entertainment and laughs, only to jab me right in the feels when I’m least expecting it…

FUNNY THINGS SHOULDN’T ALSO MAKE YOU CRY. It’s not fair.

So here we go… Here are four ways you can make me cry by simply pointing me towards a computer screen:

There are TWO TV episodes and TWO movies that will have tears streaming down the sides of my face guarenteed, 100% of the time. Hell, on Friday when I was explaining why they made me cry I could feel the tears welling up in my eyes.

I’ll start with the movies, since they’re the most popularly known tearjerker endings that I know of…

1. Monsters Inc.

So most of you reading this should have seen this Pixar classic. If you haven’t, go to your local Blockbust….errrrr or check on Netflix to see if its there. Just watch it. Without spoiling it too much, basically the whole movie is cute and funny children’s stuff with this cute little girl running around with these big (not so) scary monsters names Scully and Mike. The monsters slowly start to bond with her until yadda yadda yadda, plot points and things happen. In the final scene, Scully gets an opportunity to reunite with the little girl one last time and cue the wave of emotions.

I remember I was watching this movie in a U of Manitoba Film Studies course on animation, and tried my damnedest to keep it together amongst my class of 30 or so people. Luckily, my choice to sit at the back of the class afforded me a quick escape so that people couldn’t see my emotions seeping from my eyes.

2. Toy Story 3

So I tried to avoid spoilers with the last post (which now realize is impossible given that I described the last scene in the movie which… would spoil a lot if you’ve never seen Monsters Inc. before…), but if you’re not caught up with the Toy Story trilogy, clearly you have no interest in doing so.

OK. SO WHAT’S UP, PIXAR?

Let’s get this straight. First, you set up the whole narrative with Andy not being interested in his toys, which results in the toys thinking they’re about to be thrown out or whatever. So the plot progresses, and I’m laughing and enjoying the movie. Woody and the gang escape from the prison-like day care centre, only to be nearly BURNT ALIVE at the dump in what was the first emotional punch in the gut in store for your audience. Thanks to the plucky alien squeak toy pals using a claw to save everyone (brilliant call back to the original Toy Story), everyone gets saved and manage to make it back to Andy’s house.

Then, as Andy is leaving for college, he goes to donate the toys to a little girl around the block, and WHAM. You hit us with the most heart-wrenching music as Andy gives each toy a passionate description of how he played with them back in the first film. He gets through what he thinks is all of them, but Woody had crawled into the box with the other toys. Andy had not intended to give away his most favourite toy of all time, but… Okay I’m doing an awful job of describing this, so here:

And with that video, someone replaced Pixar’s music with EVEN MORE EMOTIONALLY-CHARGED MUSIC. Thanks, Roger Arreola, I’d only cried three times today thinking about writing this blog post. Now I know that apparently my body has an unlimited supply of tears to draw from.

Anyways, Pixar apparently has my number when it comes to creating these emotional moments in their animated movies. Hell, I haven’t even seen Up yet because I’ve watched the opening 6 minutes on YouTube and don’t think I could finish the whole movie.

Moving on, the television episodes both come from the same series…

Futurama.

Now, if you’re a fan of Futurama, you already know which episodes I must be talking about here. If you aren’t a huge fan of Futurama, and are wondering to yourself “isn’t that the show made by the Simpsons guy about a robot and a talking lobster?” — you’re correct. But it’s also the show responsible for arguably the two best episodes of television I’ve seen, in terms of being both hilarious, entertaining and utterly heartbreaking at the same time.

3. The Luck of the Fryrish (Season 3, Episode 4)

I’ll touch on this episode first because I want to save the absolute best for last. In this episode, we follow Fry and the gang as they try to track down the lucky seven-leaf clover that Fry had before he came to the future. Through a series of flashbacks inspired by the group’s journey through Old New York, we get to see Fry’s testy relationship with his older brother Yancy. As the episode goes on, Fry realizes that apparently his brother not only stole his lucky clover, but also his identity and dream to become an astronaut. Filled with rage, Fry, Bender and Leela go up to the orbiting graveyard where Earth’s greatest heroes are buried, to dig up his brothers grave and get his clover back.

But when they get to the gravesite, we get another flashback as Fry makes an important realization…

(Sorry that this just includes the audio, but thats all you need really)

Damn you, Futurama. It amazes me how a show can take you from one extreme to another. Go from making you tear up, to having Bender jump in with a funny line a moment later. Ugh, I shouldn’t have watched that clip again. Moving on.

4. Jurassic Bark (Season 4, Episode 7)

This. I don’t understand how human beings created this without depleting the world’s supply of tissues, because if I just think about this episode for too long, I turn into a crying mess.

This episode is all the more powerful if you had a dog growing up as a kid. The episode revolves around Fry finding his old dog, Seymour, as a fossilized specimen at a museum. Again, like in the Luck of the Fryrish, we get a bunch of flashbacks that show Seymour and Fry hanging out back in the 1990s. Bender is jealous that Fry will be getting his old friend back, and tries to sabotage the attempt to bring Seymour back to live by cloning his DNA.

Again, its the ending of this episode that gets me. Luckily, there’s no clip of this particular show on YouTube, but there is many versions of the song that they play. The song. Just haunting. Have a listen.

And check out the comments. So many people referencing Seymour and Futurama.

For the longest time, I thought I was weird for being so emotionally effected by a cartoon, but finding things like those comments on the internet have proven to me that I’m not strange. Futurama just hit it out of the park with these episodes. I seriously have to stop and consider whether not I’m ready to cry whenever Jurassic Bark or the Luck of the Fryrish comes on TV. Is it worth feeling like garbage for a half hour after the episode is over? Most of the time it is. They’re just too good.

Another Futurama episode that I had heard completes the trifecta of tearjerkers is Game of Tones from Season 10, where Fry has to revisit his last night in the 90s through his memories, and desperately wants a chance to talk to his mother just one more time. I actually watched it just before writing this blog and yup, it definitely deserves an honourable mention on this list.

So here’s a challenge for you, if you think you can handle it: watch The Luck of the Fryrish, Jurassic Bark and Game of Tones back-to-back-to-back without shedding a single tear.

If you make it through, then you’re some sort of monster. Oh wait no, we know from Monsters Inc. that monsters have feelings too.

So I guess that makes you something worse than a monster.

I guess that would make you a Republican   PR major   robot or something….

Oh, and I guess in closing I should mention that I decided to become a Journalism major next year, if you couldn’t tell already.

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4 thoughts on “Why did you have to make me cry?

  1. Disney (not just Pixar) in general is just awful for that. I tear up every time I see Mufasa die in Lion King, and every time that old lady leaves the fox in the forest in Fox and the Hound (EVERY time).

  2. Um, it is POSSIBLE to watch Toy Story 3 without crying?! I remember the first time I watched it I was babysitting, and I was sitting on the couch bawling my eyes out and the three-year-olds just looked at me like, “Seriously? You’re the one in charge here?” I mean, I knew that Disney wasn’t actually going to burn them alive, but it was just so emotionally wrenching to watch 😥

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