25 TV Viewers Reveal The Most Mentally Disturbing Episode That Was Somehow Allowed To Air

Spoiler Warning: Ask Reddit users talk about the most disturbing episodes from their favorite television shows.

1. A girl was sexually assaulted by a demon

“Probably not the most popular show, but The Magicians (syfy series), when the girl finds out her memory was altered to forget being sexually assaulted by a demon. Probably one of the most fucked up things I’ve seen on TV.” — alexkim804

2. A child was abused by her own grandfather before she got attacked and died

“The episode of Little House on the Prairie where the girl (14? 15?) is abused by her grandfather, gets spied on by boys while she’s changing, then blamed when the boy’s are caught. Later she’s raped by a clown, beaten, gets pregnant, her grandfather calls her a slut and tells her it was her own fault she got raped, then she gets attacked again and dies.” — karmagirl314

3. An inbred family kept a disfigured woman beneath the bed

X-Files home episode. Inbred family keeps the mother who has no arms or legs under the bed. They roll her out from under the bed to reproduce. It was some sick stuff. Needless to say all sorts of deformities in the children.” — rvore

4. A woman was found dead inside of her bathtub

“DEXTER SPOILERS: Dexter season 4 finale. He finally gets rid of The Trinity Killer, dumps his body in the ocean and heads home. Walks in the bathroom, his wife Rita is dead in the tub as his son sits on the floor in her blood. Trinity had murdered her. That was a fucked up episode and stayed with me for a long time.” — pamzee70

5. Kittens were thrown into the river to drown to death

“That episode of Tom & Jerry where Tom dies and goes to heaven, before getting deny entrance (because he is a dick). There’s three kittens wet kittens running out of a sack into heaven. Some asshole just put those kittens in a sack and thrown them in a river and they all died.” — Summerclawt

6. A little girl was convinced that she caused the death of her brother

“There’s a two-part episode of Little House on the Prairie where the family has a new baby and Laura, who was like 10, get jealous because of the attention he is getting. He gets sick and they ask everyone to pray for him, she doesn’t. The baby dies and she feels guilty and runs away into the wilderness. She is trying to get to the top of a mountain to get close to God so he will kill her and bring back her brother.” — daltonthecooler

7. The trees were made from dead children

“Over the garden wall – The Unknown. When the woodsman discovers he’s been chopping trees made from dead children.” — Bangazinc 

8. A character committed suicide out of the blue

“The episode of ‘House’ where Kal Pen’s character committed suicide completely out of the blue. It was a really heavy episode.” — Fanshelpmesleep

9. A man shot up an entire hospital

“There’s an episode of Grey’s Anatomy where some guy walks in and shoots up the whole hospital. Grim” — Banterpalooza

10. A man stopped his brother from committing murder

“An episode of Fresh Prince. I can’t remember it exactly, I think Will got shot, and then Carlton almost goes and shoots the guys who did it, but Will stops him. Very different tone from the rest of the show.” — sullivnc

11. A man was tormented with memories of murdering his cellmate

“Star Trek: Deep Space 9 had a lot of pretty dark episodes. The one that sticks out to me is ‘Hard Time,’ where O’Brien is falsely convicted of espionage. The punishment was not actual imprisonment, but rather implanted memories of 20 years of imprisonment, designed specifically to torment him. He ends up murdering his cellmate and only friend in cold blood over a stupid misunderstanding. When he goes back to his old life, he is experiencing PTSD as though it actually happened, because it did for all intents and purposes. He tries to kill himself, and he would’ve gone through with it if he hadn’t been stopped. The episode basically concludes with O’Brien having to learn to carry the guilt for a crime he didn’t actually commit for the rest of his life.” — kingoflint282

12. A child was killed and his body was dissolved

“BREAKING BAD SPOILERS: Breaking Bad definitely was dark overall but there were a few super dark points. The girl choking to death on her vomit while Walt watched and the dirt bike kid getting killed/dissolved come right to the front.” — Unbeknown

13. His friends all died in a brutal car crash

“There was an episode of Family Ties where Alex backs out of a trip with some friends who end up dying in a car crash. Most of the episode is a play with Alex talking to his dead friend in a dark room trying to come to terms with survivor’s guilt.” — SuitedPair

14. A child died in the most disturbing way possible

“THE WALKING DEAD SPOILERS: The Walking Dead has a bunch, but I think the episode where the older of two young girls murders her sister because she wanted to see her turn into a walker, and was about to do the same to the baby that was with them. In the next scene the two adults (don’t remember their names) discover that this child was also the shithead who was feeding rats to the walkers at the prison, and even left one opened up as a trophy, and decide that she is too dangerous to have with them, and eventually just blow her brains out.” — shit_poster9000

15. A man got beaten to death with bare hands

“CRIMINAL MINDS SPOILERS: The episode of Criminal Minds where Hotch’s wife was murdered and they show the scene where she is saying goodbye to him over the phone. Then he ultimately beats the guy to death with his bare hands.” — alnumero 

16. A girl became horribly disfigured

“American Horror Story – Freak Show, episode 7 ‘Test of Strength.’

Penny goes to tell her father she is moving out and in response her father knocks her out. She wakes up to her father’s tattoo artist friend, who has her restrained and is tattooing her face and head completely. Also gives her a forked tongue, so she will look like a freak.” — BlakeIsGreatRight

17. A woman slit her wrists wide open

“SHAMELESS SPOILERS: Shameless episode where the bipolar mother slits her wrists wide open during the holidays.” — shush_its_nap_time

18. People were mentally murdered

Black Mirror, Playtest. Where at the end Cooper has been so completely mind fucked that he can’t remember anything at all and had no idea who he was. Then Shou Saito has him put with ‘the others.’ So basically the headset prototype has been mentally killing tons people and they’ve all been swept under the rug.” — mguniverse

19. A boy accidentally joined a cult and suffered through the aftermath

“The episode of Boy Meets World where Shawn unknowingly joins a cult. BMW was never afraid of being real with their storylines, but I remember the first time seeing this episode and just being so shook and heartbroken at what Shawn was going through. This might be one of the deepest, darkest episodes that they put out.” — SamBel28

20. A drunken father shot at his son with a loaded gun

“Two part episode of Moral Orel where he and his father go hunting and camping. His father gets really drunk and goes on a tirade. The first episode ends with a cliffhanger that makes you believe Orel accidentally shoots his father. The following episode opens to reveal that the bullet only shattered his father’s beer bottle. Then almost immediately, the father drunkenly shoots Orel in the arm. Orel lay there bleeding and asking for help through much of the episode, but the father is too drunk to even realize what had happened, and ultimately passes out. The series, up to that point, was largely jovial, but the general tone of the series remained dark after that episode.” — Evajin

21. A little girl suffered from a horrifying nightmare

“Rugrats. When Angelica learns her mom is pregnant and expecting a boy, she starts worrying her parents will forget about her. She has a horrifying nightmare where her not-yet-born baby brother comes to life as a giant infant, speaks with the deep voice of a grown man, chases her and then eats her. But the ending is super dark – Angelica’s mom tells her she’s no longer having the baby.” — 1000WaystoPie

22. There was an abusive relationship and implied rape in a children’s show

“Remember that Courage the Cowardly Dog episode with the cat who comes to them masked while we learn that she has a bunny friend who is living with her abusive Dog boyfriend? One of the most mature and well-written episodes. But re-watch it and it’s like there are underlying themes of abuse, and very possibly rape and prostitution (the bunny is being forced by her boyfriend and there’s that scene where they put her in a flower pot kinda like ‘deflowering.’ Maybe I’m just looking too much into it lol but man it was intense.” — KoolKoffeeKlub 

23. There was a deadly fire inside of the school

“For years I had these vague memories of an episode of Arthur about a fire at the school. For whatever reason I never actually googled it and just assumed that I either made up that episode in my head or was misremembering it. Well I found out on Reddit not all that long ago, that not only was that a real episode, but it was written in response to 9/11.” — bluemotron

24. A soldier was the only one of his friends left alive

“The episode of Cheers where the Veteran comes in for his ten-year reunion, waits in the back of the bar for the majority of the episode, and realizes he’s the last surviving member of his squadron or whatever.

That one made me tear up. I was not expecting that sort of subject matter when I started watching that damn show.” — lackluckster

25. A woman attempted to kill herself in front of her friend

“The Golden Girls… Sophia’s friend decides to kill herself, and asks Sophia to be there when she does it. Of course it didn’t actually play out that way, Sophia talks her out of it, but still a very dark episode for GG.” — rainbowbright87 Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Holly is the author of Severe(d): A Creepy Poetry Collection.

Keep up with Holly on Instagram, Twitter and Amazon

More From Thought Catalog