TV is all about high drama, about raising the stakes for characters and putting them into tough situations. And the higher the stakes, the more heartbreaking the choices they have to make. The following choices are some of the most twisted, dark, and sadistic in TV history.
The ultra-violent political drama features many difficult choices for its characters. Joffrey, for example, once told an offensive minstrel that he must choose whether he could have his tongue cut out or his hands cut off.
But one of the most haunting choices is an implied one. The jail cells in the Eyrie only have three walls, so a prisoner can leave at any time. There's just one thing: leaving means death, because the fourth wall of the cell opens out over a cliff. The floor is slightly tilted toward this opening as well, a fact that Tyrion learned when he almost fell out after rolling over in his sleep.
In the miniseries event "Children of Earth," the people of Earth are faced with a gruesome choice. They must give 10% of the children on the planet to a mysterious alien race (a race that plans to use the children to manufacture drugs), or else the aliens will kill everyone in the world. In that scenario, there's literally no choice you could live with.
The series might have been short-lived with a lot of unanswered questions, but "Awake" had one major cruel choice sitting at the heart of its premise. It's heavily implied in the pilot episode of the series that once Michael decides which version of reality is real, he'll stop dreaming about the other one. In other words, once he makes up his mind about who died, he'll never see them again. So in essence, he has to choose whether his wife or his son will live or die.
In the fourth season finale, Shawn faces off against the dreaded Yin/Yang serial killer. He gets himself into a situation where he has to choose between saving Juliet (his partner who he has romantic feelings for) or Abigail (a high school sweetheart he's recently reconnected with).
In one gut-wrenching episode of "24," a terrorist has a man's son and wife held hostage. The terrorist asks the man which person he'd rather have released. Eventually, the man asks for the terrorist to release his son. But in a twist, the terrorist releases the wife...the man has shown which hostage is most valuable to him.