17 Cringe-Worthy Moments From Rom-Coms That Keep Me Up At Night

“It was so painful to watch.”

I love a romantic comedy as much as the next person, but sometimes the secondhand embarrassment becomes so unbearable I just have to look away.

Here are some very cringey rom-com moments:


Every time The Truth About Cats & Dogs tried to convince us Janeane Garofalo was ugly

I remember watching “The Truth About Cats and Dogs” and being mind blown that Janeane was supposed to be the tubby undesirable friend. I mean who among us wouldn’t compare unfavorably to Uma Thurman but they really made it seem like Janeane’s character was Quasimodo. https://t.co/cIikr5faHZ

06:52 PM – 26 Apr 2021

Twitter: @xicacha

20th Century Fox

I watched this movie at least a dozen times as a kid, and the older I got the more baffled I was that Janeane Garofalo was supposed to be “the ugly one.” And when that beauty counter woman shamed her into buying a bunch of skincare products and makeup? RUDE.


The You’ve Got Mail Zabar’s scene

There’s nothing quite as cringe as the supermarket scene in “You’ve Got Mail” where Tom Hanks “charms” the cashier into taking Meg Ryan’s credit card in the cash only line of the super market. https://t.co/nVJygzcamx

06:56 PM – 07 Dec 2021

Twitter: @DrinkerInChief

Warner Bros.

The older I get, the more I realize Joe Fox is really just a villain. He not only puts Kathleen Kelly out of business but also catfishes her! And we’re supposed to think he’s being all charming when he gets the Zabar’s cashier to run Kathleen’s credit card, but it’s just so…smarmy and gross. The last thing a retail worker needs on a busy night is people holding up the line to begin with.

Buena Vista Pictures

I’m sorry, but in a real high school, Kat would’ve gotten roasted into oblivion for this, no matter how scary her classmates found her. Yes, I cry every time I watch it, because other people crying makes me cry, but I also feel immense secondhand embarrassment.


This Never Been Kissed couple

I’m watching Never Been Kissed after years of not watching it, and this movie is so cringe. Mr. Caulson liked Josie when she was 17, then got mad at her when he found out she was 25? Seems very suspicious.

07:00 PM – 08 Nov 2021

Twitter: @1015Camarena

20th Century Fox

This guy should have been fired, full stop, or at the very least investigated by the school board.


The cardboard cutouts in Coyote Ugly

The scene in coyote ugly where she strips in front of the Australian dude is so so cringe makes me wna throw something at my TV so it breaks

10:13 PM – 11 Feb 2015

Twitter: @h_mbxo

Buena Vista Pictures

The cardboard cutouts start out as a cute gesture, but once she starts stripping amidst them it’s SO AWKWARD.


The Bridget Jones’s Diary weigh-in scene

once again becoming shocked and outraged when remembering the enormous deal that was made out of Renee Zellweger becoming fat for Bridget Jones Diary and then seeing that her weight in the film is… 130 pounds

04:10 PM – 27 Oct 2021

Twitter: @caitiedelaney

Universal Pictures

First of all, it’s weird that Bridget — a born-and-raised Brit — is marking her weight down in pounds. (I get that Hollywood caters to America, but I — an American — find it odd.)

Second of all, she’s not fat, and even if she were, there wouldn’t be anything wrong with it.


The fatsuit in America’s Sweethearts

The fact that as recently as 2001 we considered Julia Roberts character in America’s Sweethearts SO FAT that her “transformation” from like a size 10 was a monumental part of the film is literal insanity.

11:35 PM – 16 Nov 2020

Twitter: @JessFortunato

Sony Pictures Releasing

Speaking of body shaming, this was offensive and unnecessary. The implication that Eddie can only really love Kiki after she loses weight is gross, plus I feel like Kiki being Eddie’s wife’s sister should have been enough to keep him from falling for her, but I’m weird that way.


Basically all of Shallow Hal

@orquidiaarte ‘Shallow Hal’ is extremely fatphobic and cruel. Even though it’s about a fat woman’s inner beauty, the movie is full of fat shaming and horrible cliché fat jokes.

10:24 PM – 18 Apr 2021

Twitter: @IdaFunkhouser

20th Century Fox

2001 was really the Year of the body shaming Rom-Com. Shallow Hal is probably the worst perpetrator, and it pains me that Jack Black had anything to do with it, let alone starred in it.


The broken hairbrush in The Princess Diaries

That moment of The Princess Diaries that’s supposed to be funny, but actually makes me cringe every time: when the hairbrush breaks #tooreal

10:38 PM – 02 Apr 2014

Twitter: @marissa_gracie

Buena Vista Pictures

As someone who grew up with hair very similar to Mia’s pre-makeover coif, I’m all-too-familiar with how it feels to have a hairbrush get stuck in my hair.


Melanie getting drunk in Sweet Home Alabama

watching Sweet Home Alabama for the first time in years & did not remember Melanie getting drunk, & OUTING her old bestie in a crowded bar 🥴

07:17 PM – 14 Feb 2022

Twitter: @kcllknrkrt

Buena Vista Pictures

This whole scene is a trainwreck. I, like Melanie, grew up in a small town and moved to New York City, and I would never dream of treating my old friends and classmates the way she does. She’s rude and snobby and literally outs Bobby Ray. Total chaos.


The Sweetest Thing‘s impromptu musical number

I saw “The Sweetest Thing” (2002) for the first time a few weeks ago and that scene at the restaurant when they start singing a song about dicks still haunts me. It was so painful to watch.

01:17 PM – 11 Jan 2019

Twitter: @mxxngo

Sony Pictures Releasing

Call me boring, but I only want to be sung to when I’m expecting it.

Universal Pictures

Why were random dance scenes such a thing in the late ’90s/early ’00s?!

Universal Pictures

I’m glad that as a society we’ve come to the conclusion that this was not actually the great romantic gesture it was clearly meant to be.

Sony Pictures Releasing

I’m sure this didn’t put any terrible ideas into anyone’s head.

Universal Pictures

Personally, this one is more about not wanting to see my own cringe-worthy behavior mirrored back at me.

Universal Studios

He was really in his sleazeball era in that movie.

Warner Bros.

The whole teen babysitter taking a nude photo of herself for her employer thing is bad enough, but that she ends up giving it to his son/her charge is just… icky. They could have easily made it a love letter instead of a nude picture, or skipped it altogether since it added literally nothing to the movie.

What rom-com moment do you think is the cringiest? Tell us in the comments!

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