The BEST Episodes of The Big C

Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!

Last Updated: Jan 11, 2022

Network: Showtime

A suburban mother faces her cancer diagnosis while trying to find humor and happiness as well

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The Finale

#1 - The Finale

Season 4 - Episode 4 - Aired May 6, 2013

Adam surprises everyone when he fulfills one of Cathy's wishes. Cathy's estranged Dad visits her. Andrea gets the opportunity of a lifetime. Sean has mixed feelings about his impending kidney surgery.

star 8.39
334 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Darlene Hunt, Jenny Bicks
Quality of Death

#2 - Quality of Death

Season 4 - Episode 3 - Aired May 6, 2013

Dr. Sherman pays a visit to Cathy, who has checked herself into a hospice and is experiencing problems with her new roommate. Adam confronts Paul about his lack of parental guidance. Andrea seeks inspiration from Cathy.

star 8.38
292 votes
Directors: Richard Heus
Writers: Jenny Bicks
You Can't Take It With You

#3 - You Can't Take It With You

Season 4 - Episode 2 - Aired Apr 29, 2013

Sean feels inspired to donate to charity. Cathy upsets Paul when she signs him up to an online dating service. Andrea struggles to impress her tutor, Isaac Mizrahi.

star 8.33
255 votes
Directors: Jann Turner
Crossing the Line

#4 - Crossing the Line

Season 2 - Episode 13 - Aired Sep 26, 2011

Cathy is inspired by Lee’s passing to ring in the New Year in an unexpected way; burdened by financial issues, Paul tries a new tactic with the insurance agency; Adam makes a surprising connection with Dr. Todd.

star 8.22
372 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Darlene Hunt
Quality of Life

#5 - Quality of Life

Season 4 - Episode 1 - Aired Apr 29, 2013

Cathy plans Adam's sixteenth birthday party. Andrea struggles settling in with her new room-mate at fashion school. Paul brings in a new assistant.

star 8.17
292 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Darlene Hunt
Taking the Plunge

#6 - Taking the Plunge

Season 1 - Episode 13 - Aired Nov 15, 2010

In the Season 1 finale, Cathy receives the news about her bee treatments.

star 8.03
678 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Darlene Hunt
A Little Death

#7 - A Little Death

Season 2 - Episode 9 - Aired Aug 22, 2011

Rebecca deals with the grief over her miscarriage in an unexpected way which leads Cathy to reconnect with old friends; Andrea's relationship with Myk heats up; Adam is taken by surprise when he finally meets the girl he's been chatting with in an online cancer support group.

star 7.95
499 votes
Writers: Jenny Bicks

#8 - Killjoy

Season 3 - Episode 8 - Aired Jun 3, 2012

Cathy pays back Maxine and Dave, and confronts Joy about Paul; Sean discovers the pros and cons of his relationship with Tim and Giselle; Paul learns something new about Cathy.

star 7.81
403 votes
Directors: Jann Turner
Writers: Mark J. Kunerth
The Darkest Day

#9 - The Darkest Day

Season 2 - Episode 12 - Aired Sep 19, 2011

As Cathy prepares for her trip to Italy, she receives an amicable call from Lee. Elsewhere, Paul uncovers a secret about Myk while Adam discovers one about Poppy.

star 7.80
560 votes
Directors: Craig Zisk
Writers: Jenny Bicks

#10 - Pilot

Season 1 - Episode 1 - Aired Aug 16, 2010

After being diagnosed with melanoma, Cathy decides to build a pool in her backyard, much to the chagrin of her older curmudgeonly neighbor, Marlene. Cathy’s son, Adam, plays pranks on her while her husband Paul tries to get back in her good graces. Cathy also tries to reconnect with her willfully homeless brother Sean, and devises a weight-loss plan for Andrea, one of her summer school students.

star 7.74
1,211 votes
Directors: Bill Condon
Writers: Darlene Hunt
How Bazaar

#11 - How Bazaar

Season 3 - Episode 7 - Aired May 20, 2012

Cathy and Adam go a little too far with their generosity; Joy encourages Paul to pursue an endorsement deal; Sean brings his new friends Tim and Giselle to a charity auction.

star 7.74
371 votes
Directors: Jann Turner
Writers: Cusi Cram
Life Rights

#12 - Life Rights

Season 3 - Episode 6 - Aired May 13, 2012

Cathy and Paul receive an extraordinary offer from Joy's friend.

star 7.73
319 votes
Writers: Hilly Hicks Jr.
The Last Thanksgiving

#13 - The Last Thanksgiving

Season 2 - Episode 8 - Aired Aug 15, 2011

Cathy invites friends and family to a Thanksgiving dinner, but a long-hidden secret she brings to light causes trouble.

star 7.71
526 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Darlene Hunt
Thin Ice

#14 - Thin Ice

Season 3 - Episode 1 - Aired Apr 8, 2012

Cathy receives medical news that gives her reason to hope for recovery; Sean supports Andrea's newfound appreciation for her African heritage; Adam turns to prayer to help his ailing mother.

star 7.70
435 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Darlene Hunt
Goldilocks and the Bears

#15 - Goldilocks and the Bears

Season 2 - Episode 7 - Aired Aug 8, 2011

Lee takes Cathy to a Tibetan doctor to deal with her high blood pressure. Feeling jealousy of Lee, Paul takes Cathy and Lee out for an evening, while Adam interfere with Andrea's date.

star 7.69
555 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Cusi Cram
Summer Time

#16 - Summer Time

Season 1 - Episode 2 - Aired Aug 23, 2010

Cathy learns from Dr. Todd just how little time she has left, and for the first time in her life, starts to appreciate her body. Paul tries to make sense of his wife's request to live apart for the summer by signing up for couples therapy. Adam, desperate to get away from his "crazy" mom, attempts to sneak off to soccer camp without her knowing.

star 7.64
1,001 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Darlene Hunt
Everything That Rises Must Converge

#17 - Everything That Rises Must Converge

Season 1 - Episode 12 - Aired Nov 8, 2010

Dr. Todd and Cathy go to see the Bee Man to seek non-traditional treatment for her cancer. Paul is overly supportive of Cathy around the house. Sean gives Adam relationship advice about Mia.

star 7.61
757 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Jenny Bicks
Bundle of Joy

#18 - Bundle of Joy

Season 3 - Episode 3 - Aired Apr 22, 2012

Cathy visits a joyologist while Sean and Andrea go out for Valentine's Day.

star 7.60
346 votes
Directors: Adam Bernstein
Writers: Jenny Bicks
Playing the Cancer Car

#19 - Playing the Cancer Car

Season 1 - Episode 4 - Aired Sep 13, 2010

Cathy, eager to try on a carefree, impulsive persona, drains her 401K, buys a convertible and imagines what life would be like if she were Dr. Todd's girlfriend. At his therapist's urging, Paul reignites his passion for rugby. Sean goes to great lengths to knock out a tooth without the help of a dentist. Meanwhile, Adam gets caught stealing and is surprised when Marlene comes to his rescue, until he finds out there are strings attached.

star 7.58
812 votes
Directors: Craig Zisk
Writers: Mark J. Kunerth

#20 - Boo!

Season 2 - Episode 4 - Aired Jul 18, 2011

Cathy is intrigued by Lee, a fellow cancer patient she meets on the first day of her clinical trial; Adam's downward spiral continues with a fight at school and refusal to take responsibility for his actions with Emily; Sean is worried that his new house is haunted.

star 7.56
388 votes
Directors: Miguel Arteta
Writers: Cara DiPaolo
What's Your Story?

#21 - What's Your Story?

Season 3 - Episode 2 - Aired Apr 15, 2012

Sean discovers a new and unusual way to generate income; Andrea tries to start an African-American interest club; Adam becomes increasingly devoted to his faith and joins a Bible study group at school.

star 7.55
464 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Mark J. Kunerth
Family Matters

#22 - Family Matters

Season 3 - Episode 4 - Aired Apr 29, 2012

Cathy focuses on her new personal pursuit while Adam and Andrea each cope with her new direction in their own ways; Sean meets Willy (guest star Victor Garber), the former owner of his sex line business.

star 7.53
400 votes
Directors: Adam Bernstein
Writers: Cara DiPaolo
The Little c

#23 - The Little c

Season 2 - Episode 6 - Aired Aug 1, 2011

Adam's shocking indiscretion threatens Cathy's new job as a swim coach; sparks fly between Andrea and Myk, a Ukrainian coworker that Paul is mentoring; Sean seeks advice on taking the "next step" with Rebecca.

star 7.50
417 votes
Writers: Hilly Hicks Jr.
Cats and Dogs

#24 - Cats and Dogs

Season 2 - Episode 5 - Aired Jul 25, 2011

Due to Paul's layoff, Cathy starts to pawn her jewelry and meets Lee there as well. Adam gets into a situation that he may need help with to get out of. Sean is kicked out of a mother's group when he tests out his homemade sling at the park

star 7.50
421 votes
Writers: Melanie Marnich
Musical Chairs

#25 - Musical Chairs

Season 2 - Episode 2 - Aired Jul 4, 2011

Frustrated at not being able to land a spot in the clinical trial of a new treatment by a respected oncologist, Cathy resorts to supernatural aid; Sean becomes assertive around the house; Adam capitalizes on his classmates' sympathy about his mother's illness.

star 7.48
554 votes
Directors: Michael Engler
Writers: Jenny Bicks