Sitcoms are supposed to make viewers laugh, but sometimes, they make us cry. Television can be a reflection of life, and therefore, sitcom deaths are an inevitability. Sometimes, showrunners eliminate characters because their story arc is complete; other times, an actor just wants to leave a series, or perhaps an actor passed away in real life. No matter the reason, these sad sitcom character deaths made viewers totally forget they were watching a comedy.
The losses affect the lives of the characters that loved them on the show, but these tragic storylines also affect audiences. Which character end had you sobbing the most? Vote up the saddest demises in sitcom history.
- Photo: Fox
In the Season 4 episode, "Jurassic Bark," Fry discovers a fossilized version of his beloved pet dog, Seymour. Prior to Fry's cryogenic freeze a 1,000 years before, he told his dog to wait for him outside of Panucci's Pizza.
The Professor agrees to clone Seymour at Fry's request. However, just before the process, Fry reconsiders because his dog passed at 15-years-old, which means he lived 12 years without Fry. He determines that Seymour must have moved on and decides to stop the cloning process.
Then, in an emotional sucker punch, the episode reveals through montage that Seymour actually waited for Fry to come back. The obedient dog sat outside of the pizzeria every day until his passing, anticipating a reunion that never occurred.
It's a tear-jerker of an episode for Futurama fans. Yes, it is okay to cry during an animated series if it's about the thought of poor Seymour just waiting and waiting for his owner to return until the day he dies.Did this hit you hard?
- Photo: NBC
Even though Dr. Perry Cox (John C. McGinley) divorced Jordan Sullivan (Christa Miller), he remained close and friendly with her brother, Ben Sullivan (Brendan Fraser.) Dr. Cox and J.D. (Zach Braff) diagnose Ben with leukemia; however, both doctors believe that Ben has a chance to beat cancer.
In the Season 3 episode, "My Screw Up," Ben returns for his nephew Jack's first birthday party appearing cancer-free. However, he has failed to receive treatment for two years. The audience is aware that someone at Sacred Heart Hospital has passed away but are led to believe that it was J.D.'s patient who succumbed to a heart attack.
Ben accompanies Dr. Cox throughout the episode, and they go to Jack's birthday party together, even though Dr. Cox does not want to. It is then revealed that Ben is the person who passed, and Dr. Cox had been imagining him the whole time. The party is not a party at all, but it's actually Ben's funeral.
It's an emotional episode for all of the characters. We see the sarcastic, cut-throat Dr. Cox finally let himself become vulnerable in order to grieve.Did this hit you hard?
- Photo: CBS3
Henry Blake From 'M*A*S*H'
McLean Stevenson, the actor who played commanding officer Lieutenant Colonel Henry Blake on M*A*S*H, wanted to leave the series. The writers decided to go about his exit from the show in a manner that had never been done before on television.
At the beginning of the Season 3 finale, “Abyssinia, Henry," Blake receives news that he is being sent home. He's totally ecstatic. His friends throw him a little going away party that night, and after addressing his troops in the morning, he climbs aboard a helicopter.
The next scene takes place in an operating room. Radar (Gary Burghoff), who looked up to Blake as a father-figure and close friend, informs everyone that the Lieutenant Colonel's plane was shot down. He adds, "there were no survivors."
Radar is clearly devastated. Pain, shock, and cries fill the operating room. The television audience was also left stunned, many spectators were even angry. It's one thing to have a character leave a show, but to off a character? It was a totally groundbreaking and heartbreaking episode of television.Did this hit you hard?
- Photo: CBS
Marshall's (Jason Segel) father, Marvin Sr. (Bill Fagerbakke), was a recurring character on HIMYM. The father and son were especially close and talked every day. Marshall even admits that his dad was his best friend.
In Season 6 of the comedy series, Marvin dies unexpectedly of a heart attack. Adding to the emotion of Marvin's passing is that Marshall and Lily (Alyson Hannigan) find out that they're pregnant with their first child.
In the emotional episode, "Last Words," Marvin's loved ones attend the beloved man's funeral. Marshall is totally devastated by his father's passing. He finally brings himself to play a voicemail that was left by his dad, but then is disappointed when he discovers it was a butt dial. However, part-way through the call, Marvin realizes that he accidentally dialed his son. He tells him, "I love you."
Marvin's passing affects the whole group of friends. They each call their own fathers (Barney calls his mother) to let them know that they are thinking about them.Did this hit you hard?