[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/7th_Heaven_4556.jpg]]

In [[TheNineties the '90s]], Creator/TheWB aired this drama about a pastor, his wife, their seven kids, and their dog. The pastor, a [[NiceGuy goodnatured fella]], dealt with the problems of both his family and his flock, which were often related, with varying degrees of success.

This show had an interesting mix of old-fashioned TV family entertainment and {{Soap Opera}}tics. It stretched the limits of preacher's kids' misbehavior in later seasons.

The show lasted from August 1996 to May 2007. It was the [[LongRunners longest-running]] and highest-rated show on Creator/TheWB by far (as well as Creator/AaronSpelling's longest-running show), loved by many viewers and SnarkBait for many others (it was likely one of the few shows on the network to attract audiences ''outside'' the valued 18-49 demographic). It got [[PostScriptSeason renewed for an eleventh season]] off the ratings of its [[SeriesFauxnale intended series finale]] (to the distress of fans of ''Series/{{Everwood}}''); it ended shortly after Creator/TheWB did.

Not to be confused with an [[Film/SeventhHeaven Oscar-winning silent film]].

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!!Tropes used and applied by the fans:

* AcademicAthlete: Oldest daughter Mary, until mid-way season 4, is both successful as a basketball player of her school team, and academically successful. This is inverted in a big way come the two-part episode "Sin..." and "...Expiation", when the basketball team is suspended due to their grades slipping, Mary and her friends vandalize the school, and during the rest of season 4 and 5, a lot of drama ensues surrounding her character, which ultimately results in her being PutOnABus and her becoming TheUnfavorite during the later seasons.[[note]]Character Mary's downfall was probably brought on by the fact that in [[RealLifeWritesThePlot Real Life]], actress Creator/Jessica Biel had posed semi-nude in a magazine, and the shows' creators were ''not amused'' by that.[[/note]]
* TheAlcoholic: Eric's sister, Julie, in the first episode she appears in season 1, is an alcoholic that Eric insist on detoxing at his home. [[note]]In RealLife that [[DoNotTryThisAtHome would be medically ill-advised]]...[[/note]] When later appearing in the series (most notably in season 5, when Mary drinks a beer while babysitting Julie's daughter), Julie refers to herself as a recovering alcoholic.
* AlcoholicParent: The Camdens will occasionally come across one of these, and will try to help their child-in-need. One example would be the father of Ruthie's then-boyfriend Peter, who returns home after three years away, and proves to be a {{Jerkass}} at first, until Eric convinces him to be a little more enthusiastic about life. However, by this time, he has been sober for a while, though apparently according to Peter, he was a nightmare when he was hitting the bottle.
* AllAbusersAreMale: Almost every time some plotline involves domestic violence, it is ''always'' the man, and the woman is the victim. One exception to this trope is when Kevin and Roxanne arrived at the scene of a domestic dispute, where it is clearly shown that both the husband and wife are abusing one another, with the woman actually getting the jump on Kevin, which leaves him sorely embarrassed.
* AllCrimesAreEqual: As noted on the main page, any time one of the Camden kids gets into trouble, he or she will suffer the worst possible consequences of it. This runs the gamut from Ruthie being made to wash an entire wall because she was trying to make a mural in her room, to Mary being shipped to Buffalo because she couldn't keep a job, had about two beers, and ran a stop sign.
* AlliterativeName: Jordan Johansson, Paris and Peter Petrowski, Cecilia Smith (the "S" sound), Jenny Jackson, Wilson West, Roxanne Richardson, Shana Sullivan, Kevin Kinkirk...god, Brenda Hampton really loves this trope! (see ''Series/TheSecretLifeOfTheAmericanTeenager'').
* AlphaBitch: Simon's ex-fiancee, Rose, counts as this. She is depicted as a selfish, whiny (even more than the other characters), spoiled {{Jerkass}} whose behavior and antics have earned her the ire of many fans, enough to be considered TheScrappy (amongst tons of other characters). Amongst other things, she seemed to fall into ClingyJealousGirl mode around Simon, was always pressuring him to move up their impending wedding (which he ultimately did), acted rude and insolent towards the Camdens (including getting rid of their Christmas tree by feigning allergies, claiming Santa Claus and Jesus weren't real to ''seven-year-old twins'' and often butting heads with Annie - though that was unintentional) as well as her supposed friend Sandy, and even worse, when Sandy called Rose to be by her side when she was giving birth to her son, Rose refused and simply stated "she had classes," and got jealous when Simon was justifiably worried about Sandy. Her behavior prompted a [[WhatDoesSheSeeInHim What Does He See in Her?]] reaction from the audience. By the time the show writers tried to make her more sympathetic, she had garnered a sizable {{Hatedom}} and the damage of her actions was done; the writers, in the process, had made her into the stereotypical Christian fundamentalist view of secular people. However, the writers did seem to have something going on when they hired former ''Series/{{Angel}}'' cast member Sarah Thompson to portray Rose; Thompson had portrayed Eve, who herself was a {{Jerkass}}, AlphaBitch, and ReplacementScrappy all wrapped up into one.
* ArtisticLicenseMedicine: Before season 10, Sandy and Martin had an affair, explicitly stated to have happened during the summer, resulting in the former's pregnancy. However, Sandy gave birth to their son in the episode ''after'' the MLK Day tribute episode "Got MLK?" with the episode airing January 30, 2006; the baby was born around his due date, so the conception would be around April.
* AsHimself: In this case, Happy the Dog... plays Happy the Dog. She got starring billing for her stirring role playing a common housedog, though her Emmy submissions always seemed to be rejected.
* AuthorTract: ''7th Heaven'' was basically a way for the writers to belt out their feelings over the perceived decline of godliness in American society, while also looking down on numerous topics that they felt secular people indulge in irresponsibly (including alcoholism, drug abuse, premarital sex, and teen pregnancy). The show also (mostly) implicitly advocated for conservatism (heck Lucy even stated in one episode that "maybe people should be a little more conservative!" to Mary). By doing this, secular viewers watching the show (likely, with their kids) would increasingly feel alienated by the show as it went on, especially when every topic deemed "normal" by them would lead to a massive tirade from the series, which always took itself seriously. Additionally, the show is an idyllic small town setting that invokes the '50s, and also a way to appeal to a wider audience (unsurprisingly, the show did gain more viewers ''outside'' the 18-49 year old demographics than most shows), even though realism would be thrown out for the [[RuleOfDrama sake of dramatic conflict]].
* AxesAtSchool: "See You In September" has Simon getting suspended because Annie accidentally packed a knife with his lunch.
* BabiesEverAfter:
** Eric and Annie, to begin with; this is pretty much a defining premise of the show. They start out with five children at the beginning of the show, and have two more due to a surprise [[note]]Due to a medical mix-up, Annie ironically first thinks her teenage daughter Mary is pregnant, but she is [[{{Irony}} herself]]; years later in season 8, Annie tells Lucy she got pregnant with the twins while on the pill - which was probably thrown in because the show had a pretty {{Anvilicious}} (and mostly inaccurate) message about that birth control ''will'' fail on you.[[/note]]pregnancy in season 3[[note]]Which causes them from going from being a ''family of seven people'', to ''having seven children'' - ''[[CaptainObvious Seventh]]'' Heaven, [[DontExplainTheJoke get it?]][[/note]].
** Taken to [[UpToEleven ridiculous extremes]] in the 10th season finale, in which Lucy, Mary, ''and'' Matt's wife were all pregnant... '''with twins'''.
** Inverted come the start of season 11, with Lucy having miscarried her twins. [[spoiler: Then played straight again when she found out she was pregnant near the end of the season.]]
* BabiesMakeEverythingBetter: Subverted, because Mary and Carlos soon separate after the birth of their son Charlie. Doubly subverted when Mary and Carlos do get back together, and have twin daughters. Taken UpToEleven considering the fact that three siblings (Mary, Lucy and Matt) were ''all expecting twins at the same time'' (though Lucy lost them due to a miscarriage).
* BackForTheFinale: The season 10 finale, the intended end to the series before being UnCancelled, brought back Matt and Mary, the latter of whom hadn't been seen onscreen since season 8. The episode also brought back recurring characters, Sarah (Matt's wife) and Heather (Matt's ex-girlfriend and friend, introduced in season 1).
* {{Bifauxnen}}: In ''Don't Take My Love Away'', the youngest daughter Ruthie wants to wear a tux to her parents' vow renewal ceremony. In the same storyline she doesn't want her brother Simon to move out of their bedroom.
* BigBrotherWorship:
** Sam and David adore Simon.
** Simon feels like this about Matt.
** Ruthie to Simon, also. And, until her "fall from grace," Lucy seemed to have a case of BigSisterWorship for Mary, despite the fact that they fought like crazy.
* BlackBestFriend: Actually, the ''entire'' Hamilton family could be considered this to the Camdens (or rather, the black counterpart to them, as the father was a minister, the mother a homemaker, and only averted being complete counterparts by having ''four'' kids). John Hamilton (portrayed by Chaz Lamar Shepherd) was even credited as a regular for season 4 and 5. All later [[ChuckCunninghamSyndrome disappeared by season 8]].
* BornInAnElevator: Kevin and Lucy's daughter, Savannah. Lucy goes into labor while stuck in an elevator with her brother Matt, who conveniently is a doctor, so he helps her deliver the baby.
* BrattyTeenageDaughter: Lucy in seasons 1-4. Whiny and self-involved? Check. Drama Queen? Check. Boy-crazy? Double check. Glued to the phone? Pretty much (this was taking place before mobile phones were ubiquitous, but yeah, to the family's land line)...
* BrokenAesop: Quite a few of the show's lessons don't hold up to scrutiny.
** See the episode where the parents tell their 7-year-old daughter ''she's not allowed to play pretend anymore''...because it might lead to her confusing fantasy with reality, [[InsaneTrollLogic and then killing someone]]. Really.
** Another example would be "Tunes". In the episode, the show attempts to have an equality message about women, though in the process, the message itself becomes muddled because the show also intermixes a "rap music causes misogyny" message in the same episode. In short (for full details, see YMMV page under "Designated Hero"), ''7th Heaven'' states that women should be equal to men, which in itself is a great message, and that hip hop shouldn't be listened because of its treatment of women. However, while an equality message would work if the episode were written better, the message becomes broken ''twice'' over because of the way female characters were written in the past, as well as its rap message. In earlier seasons, Lucy and Mary were depicted as boy crazy, and later became shrill stereotypes of female characters in later seasons (though both were exalted because they were great mothers and wives), while many career women were frequently depicted as selfish, rude, uncaring, and often in the wrong. Additionally, John Hamilton (Matt's then-roommate/friend) calls out a doctor after the latter asked him to simply put rap music on during a surgery, calling it "prejudicial" that the doctor would assume him, being black, would be all for it; Matt also states that people shouldn't listen to hip hop because it causes more ignorance about the plights of women (to be specific, he says "Ignorance is the enemy"). However, that statement becomes cracked because the whole episode is basically an excuse to rip on rap listeners, thus the show becoming prejudicial towards them, and if the writers did their homework, they would know that there are numerous ''female'' rappers and tons of ''women'' who listen to rap music themselves. As a result, the writers come off as both ignorant ''and'' prejudicial towards both women and rap listeners.
** In most episodes, Annie and Eric attempt to teach their kids that they can't get their way because they want to, and have to work towards it. However, at the same time, in numerous instances, both are granted their wishes without much work or in RealLife, wouldn't happen. For example, in "Red Tape", when Annie attempts to return her daughter Mary's (wrecked) sweater to the store, the cashier states the store doesn't offer returns, but after Annie gets angry and tells the woman off for the said policy, the cashier gives a CharacterFilibuster about the decline in American department stores (because of shoplifting and the like). After, Annie realizes her mistake but still asks the cashier for a refund, which she graciously gives her, completely disregarding the store's policy.
** What about how frequently Eric, a ''reverend'', gets involved in police business with their consent, though in RealLife, this would be a big no-no (especially in domestic matters). Really? And the show still promotes that you can't get everything even if you ask for it? Or maybe the {{Aesop}} is that ''kids'' cannot always get what they want, but ''adults'' can.
* ButtMonkey: Mary. Dear Lord, MARY. Apparently, it was not enough that [[spoiler: she gets hit by a car in the first season's two-part finale, injuring her knee]], but every time her basketball ambitions seem to be taking off, something happens to throw a wrench in the works. She's also portrayed as though basketball is the only thing holding her together, to the point that [[spoiler: when the girls' team vandalizes the gym, Mary is apparently so unable to cope with the aftermath that she ends up hanging out with a wild crowd, bouncing from one dead-end job to the next, and eventually being sent to Buffalo.]] Her relationships have a habit of going down the tubes, too, right up to [[spoiler: her husband Carlos, from whom she almost immediately separates. She gets back with him and they have twin girls, but her family is next to ignored for the rest of the PostScriptSeason.]] In general, Mary Camden seemed never to be allowed to be happy or successful at anything, possibly because of Creator/JessicaBiel rebelling against the show's clean image when posing topless for Gear Magazine.
* TheBusCameBack: Multiple instances.
** [[spoiler: Mary returned to Glenoak for season 6, after spending half a season in Buffalo with her grandparents.]] However, [[spoiler: she was PutOnABus, or rather plane, again in the second episode of season 7, when she took a job as a flight attendant]].
** [[spoiler: Simon didn't came back per se in season 9, though he missed only eight episodes of that season. He later transferred to a local college in Glenoak to attend his junior year, in season 10.]] However, [[spoiler: he was PutOnABus off-screen, and later left town again.]]
** [[spoiler: Same case for Matt, who came back sporadically in season 9, and was even placed in the opening credits, despite being present for less than half the season.]] Once again, [[spoiler: he went back to New York by the start of season 10.]]
** Peter Petrowski, Ruthie's ex-boyfriend, came back twice after departing the show in between seasons 8 and 9.
** Kevin's brother Ben appeared occasionally after leaving in season 7.
* CantGetAwayWithNuthin:
** Anytime a character even so much as tiptoes near the "dark side", they will see the worst possible consequences of it.
** Teenagers (or unmarried people in general) who have sex, ''will'' always get pregnant.
** Apparently, drinking not even half a beer will land you into an AA group for teens (no, seriously).
** Anytime there is a secret within the Camden family, inevitably it will come out.
* CatchPhrase:
** Ruthie had "What are we doing?" in the very early seasons, which was her way to signal she wanted to participate in whatever anybody else was doing.
** At the beginning of season 5, about the time Mary was turning into TheUnfavorite ButtMonkey and a point was being made about how much stress this was causing to Eric, there was an episode in which Eric ''repeatedly'' kept responding to other characters "''it's not '''mad''', it's '''[[InsistentTerminology angry]]'''!''"...
* CharacterFilibuster:
** There is something in the air of the Glenoak Parsonage that prevents people who live there too long from [[PunctuatedForEmphasis Ever. Shutting. Up.]]
** Combined with ThatMakesMeFeelAngry. Basically, the characters are always giving long, complicated speeches describing exactly how they feel. Inversion of ShowDontTell.
** One episode had a running subplot/RunningGag of the kids asking "Are you mad at me?" and them answering "I'm ''not'' 'mad' at you, [[InsistentTerminology I'm angry with you.]]"
* CharacterTitle: Simon's video application to film school is a dedicated episode which has many alternate titles, including "Simon Camden".
* CharacterOutlivesActor: Averted; Barry Watson survived his Hodgkins Lymphoma and returned to the show.
* ChristianityIsCatholic: Inverted by the Camdens in universe, as when Mary marries Catholic Carlos, the family makes it a point to remark "They are from different religions"; so apparently they don't view Catholicism as falling under Christianity, and to them, ''Christianity Is Protestant''.
* ChristmasEpisode: Surprisingly for a Christian show that run for over a decade, ''7th Heaven'' only had ''three'': "Here Comes Santa Claus" (season 3), "X-Mas" (season 10), and "Christmas!" (season 11).
* ChuckCunninghamSyndrome: Being a long runner will do that to you, especially with some usage of RevolvingDoorCasting in later seasons. Examples include [[spoiler: Matt, Mary, Simon, Shana, Roxanne, Chandler, Cecilia, Peter, Robbie, Meredith, Rose, and all ''six'' members of the Hamilton family]].
* ChurchOfSaintGenericus: Eric is the pastor of the Glenoak Community Church, which is apparently a non-denominational congregation.
* ClingyJealousGirl:
** Cheryl was pretty clingy to Robbie in season 4.
** Aunt Julie had this in shades; during one of her separations from her gynecologist husband, she once speculated that he was having dinner with one of his patients, a supermodel (however, since the woman was pregnant, this would be pretty unlikely, and also unethical in medical practices).
** [[spoiler: Lucy to almost all of her boyfriends, though it is more prominent when her then-"almost" fiancee Kevin got a female partner when he was still a cop (in season 7)]].
** Also, [[spoiler: Annie is an older version of this trope, acting this way towards Eric when his counseling with women gets a little too personal, or when a former female friend returns in his life. In a non-romantic version, she also appeared jealous at Cecilia when the twins were bonding with her.]]
* CockFight: One episode has two boys competing over Lucy. Their continued bickering ends up annoying her so much, that she is put off by them ''both'' and does a ScrewThisImOutOfHere.
* CoincidentalBroadcast: Occasionally used as a plot device. An example would be "Consideration" in which ''all'' the news stations in Glenoak seem to have nothing else to do except broadcast Simon's ''low speed'' "chase" through the town.
* CommutingOnABus: Matt, Mary, and Simon did this in latter seasons, though all didn't appear in [[PostScriptSeason season 11]]. Some of the other actors (Catherine Hicks and Mackenzie Rosman, who portrayed Annie and Ruthie, respectively) missed numerous episodes in the final season, so this could be a possible case.
** Simon got off the bus for season 10, having a major storyline that saw him getting engaged and nearly married to [[AlphaBitch Rose]].
* CompoundTitle:
** "Boyfriends..." "...And Girlfriends"
** "Chances..." "...Are"
** "Monkey Business"; "Monkey Business Deux"
** "Sin..." "...And Expiation"
** "Secrets..." "And More Secrets"
** "Goodbye..." "And Thank You"
* ContrivedCoincidence:
** In season 1, Annie runs into a woman who claims to be the wife of an old friend of Eric's. After learning who it is, Eric tries to apologize to the former classmate, whom he learns is now living in Glenoak, after an incident that occurred on Halloween ''32 years earlier'' (when they were 10 years old). The coincidence is that both are from Binghamton, New York yet somehow both end up living in Glenoak by their 40's. Man, Glenoak must have pretty great adverting...[[SarcasmMode or was it godly intervention]]?
** In season 5, Eric tries to convince a dying patient that he will have longer time to live, though isn't sure of it. Turns out the guy that his son Matt had been talking to all day had also been given a terminal diagnosis, and is still alive well beyond his expected time.
** In season 5, Robbie meets a girl who looks nearly identical to Mary, who has a similar name "Marie" and also played basketball.
** In season 6, Simon defends a kid from bullies, and when one of them asks why, he states: "For all you know, he's going to come to school with a gun and shoot innocent students like me because he's angry at idiots like you, so knock it off!" At the end of the episode, the police arrive at the school because of a call, and find a gun in the bullied kid's locker.
** When Lucy and Mary go to Buffalo in season 6, they are detained after Lucy makes "threats" in the airport (in reality, she is angered that her bag was confiscated by airport security, and was being sarcastic, forgetting the fact she was in an airport mere ''months'' after 9/11). Kevin is revealed to be the officer who confiscated her bag, and Lucy is immediately infatuated. Later, Lucy and Mary meet Kevin and his brother at a restaurant. Kevin's brother is then revealed to be Ben, who was Mary's boyfriend while she was living in Buffalo. By all accounts, the chances of this happening in RealLife are next to none.
** Also when having moved from Glenoak, CA to Buffalo, NY, Mary runs into her ex-boyfriend Wilson, who coincidentally has also moved to there... Very small chance indeed.
** Mary meeting her husband Carlos, whom she first met in Glenoak, when they run into each other in New York City ('''the largest city in the United States by population''') and are later married - after being apart from him for about ''five'' years (heck, she and her family remembered him, though most people wouldn't remember someone like him, specifically if the family solves problems with various sorts of people on the daily, and regularly lends their beds to strangers).
** Jane, who lives with the Camdens in season 11, just happens to be married to Eric's adoptive brother George, who is away doing training for the Marines, though this fact isn't mentioned until halfway through the season, when the Colonel and Ruth visit the family.
* CreepyTwins: Unintentional example: Sam and David. The ultimate in DullSurprise.
* DesignatedGirlFight: For a show that always played men-on-women and men-on-men violence straight for drama, [[DoubleStandard both scenes were played for laughs]].
** Chandler, Ben, Ben's mother, and Roxanne are driving in a car when they get into a fight. This escalates into a physical fight (after they have to stop and get out of the car for Roxanne having to vomit), in which Roxanne and Ben's mother fight each other while Chandler and Ben, in a gender-flip of this, do the same.
** Mary and Lucy got into a physical fight during the renewal wedding of Annie and Eric.
%% * DiscriminateAndSwitch %% Administrivia/ZeroContextExample
* DisproportionateRetribution:
** For losing several jobs, drinking like two beers, and running a stop sign, what did Mary get in return? [[PutOnABus a one-way ticket to Buffalo, New York to live with her grandparents in order to "straighten" out her life]].
** What did Peter get when he was found drinking what appeared to be ''one'' beer (and not even half of it)? A stern lecture from his recovering alcoholic dad, and a seat in an AA group for teens. Yowza.
* DoubleStandard: In the Season 9 opener, Ruthie pulls down Martin's pants in school when he won't give her a ride to school and also pay attention to her. She refuses to apologize, and Annie won't hear of her being punished for it, instead speaking of the kind of loose pants he was wearing and the favor he wouldn't do.
* DrugsAreBad: Always to the point of being {{Anvilicious}}.
** One prominent episode would be the first season episode "Last Call for Aunt Julie" (which was mentioned in TheAlcoholic section of this page) when Eric's sister Julie attacks her nephew Simon for not giving her the key to the liquor cabinet (which would be more terrifying if it wasn't so [[{{Narm}} narmy]] and taken UpToEleven), which leads to the whole [[DrugsAreBad "alcohol is bad"]] {{Aesop}} with Julie being in the first steps of recovery by the end of the episode.
** Just about any drug you can imagine was featured; from ordinary cigarettes to marijuana to hard drugs, and even sniffing glue got an episode.
* DullSurprise: As noted above, Sam and David, once they were old enough to talk. Plus, Lucy's first boyfriend Jimmy Moon.
* EasilyForgiven: The Camdens don't hold grudges with people they meet, no matter how irritating they are. For example, when Martin is first introduced, he enters the Camden residence ''without their permission'' and drinks some milk from the fridge. However, when they find out, they're not freaked, instead they brush it off as something that happen on a daily basis.
* EverybodyHatesMathematics: There was an episode which involved Annie and Mary breaking down and crying about how much they hated math.
* EverytownAmerica: Glenoak, California is a small town with deeply religious and conservative values.
* FakeGuestStar: In a way; Sergeant Michaels was the only recurring character who appeared in all 11 seasons, appearing in a whopping ''45'' episodes throughout the show's 11-year run.
* FamilyThemeNaming:
** Reverend Camden and his wife Annie give all their children Biblical names: Matthew, Mary, Lucy [[note]]The name "Lucy" is the feminine form of Luke[[/note]], Simon, Ruth(ie), Samuel and David. [[JustifiedTrope Justified]], of course, for a family of a minister, who have a strong Christian identity.
** Most of the members of the Camden family have names ending with a long E sound (Annie, Mary, Lucy, Ruthie, also Happy (the dog). They however break this tradition for the last children they have, Sam and David. Also played straight when Mary has a son herself, as she names him "Charlie", the "-ie" version of the child's father's name Carlos; but subverted once Lucy has her daughter, as she names her "Savannah", thereby breaking both the tradition of Biblical naming (the daughter is instead named after the town she was conceived in when Lucy and her husband spent their honeymoon there) and of "-y/-ie" names.
* FelonyMisdemeanor:
** Mary drinks a beer and [=TPs=] the school gym = Mary is a fallen woman on an uncontrollable downward spiral whose recklessness and lack of reverence for the conventions of civilized society will surely spell her doom. Also, you can pass out from one beer -- so completely that the continuous screaming of the baby you're supposed to be watching won't wake you up until its parents come home. The penalty? PutOnABus to Buffalo (the TelevisionWithoutPity recappers had a lot of fun with the idea of [[PlaceWorseThanDeath Buffalo as the nightmarish place you go to pay for your sins]]). And that's just the most significant example (as mentioned above, this was punishment for Jessica Biel's posing topless for ''Gear'').
** There was also that time Simon was in deep anguish over the fact that he *gasp* have sex with someone. He was majorly concerned that he might have contracted an STD, and it was played for much drama, even though he had used a condom. Do also keep in mind that he appeared to be more shaken up by having premarital sex than the time he had committed ''vehicular manslaughter''.
** And of course there was that whole episode where listening to rap music = being a woman-hater (even if, you know, you ARE a woman!)
* FiremenAreHot: Mary's love interest Ben. Even Ruthie basically wolf-whistles at him. Then comes his cop brother Kevin for Lucy...
* {{Flanderization}}:
** The main characters' quirks slowly became their most defining trait, with their lesser characteristics put to the side for the [[RuleOfDrama sake of drama]], such as Annie's overprotective/controlling attitude and nosiness, Lucy's clinginess and sensitivity, Ruthie's sneakiness, Simon's Wangst, Mary's flakiness... pretty much everyone over time, actually. But being a LongRunner will do that to you.
** Mary's was essentially done deliberately to demonize her and to [[SlutShaming shame]] and insult Jessica Biel, not only having her become a sheltered fundamentalist's view of "lacking in moral fiber" but also draining her intelligence away.
* ForgottenFallenFriend: Lucy's friend Sarah from "Nothing Endures But Change" in season 2 (though she does get a brief mention three seasons later).
* FrenchJerk: Guy, a French exchange student, drives Eric and all the kids crazy.
* [[GirlOfTheWeek Girl / Guy of the Week]]: Especially prominent in earlier seasons, often with [[OneShotCharacter one-episode love interests]].
* GiftOfTheMagiPlot: In one Christmas episode, where Annie trades her mother's cross for a jukebox for Eric's prized record collection and Eric trades the records for an expensive chain for Annie's cross. Fortunately, the antiques dealer catches on and shows up at the end to set everything right.
* GoodGirlsAvoidAbortion: A given considering the word "abortion" is never used, and there have been tons of teen moms on this show over the years.
* GoodParents:
** The father leaned towards being the OverprotectiveDad, and the mom leaned towards being MyBelovedSmother, but they are both loving and supportive Christian parents. They always stuck together as a family no matter how many things their children do wrong.
** Except for [[TheUnfavorite Mary]].
* GoshDangItToHeck: EnforcedTrope with a "family" show. The worst words the show has ever used were "damn" and "ass" both spoken by adults.
* GrammarNazi: The Camdens will, on occasion, correct their kids' (and other people's) language, which you wouldn't notice on first glance. One example is when Simon corrected a bully's grammar while defending a kid with Tourette's (season 2's "Words"), which was seen as a diss in-universe though in RealLife, would probably earn a pop on the mouth. Also look under categories "CatchPhrase" and "InsistentTerminology" for a further example.
* GroundedForever:
-->'''Mary''': So I guess I'm grounded for life?
-->'''Annie''': That's a given.
* HalloweenEpisode: The [[SarcasmMode cleverly-titled]] "Halloween" (season 1).
* HappilyMarried:
** Eric and Annie
** Kevin and Lucy
** Matt and Sarah
** Mary and Carlos, though they did break up at one point
* TheHecateSisters: The first three episodes are about the life cycle. In the pilot, daughter Lucy is sensitive about starting her period and thus becoming a woman. She says that her type is Prince Charles, because she bets that he is sensitive and shy. The second episode has mother Annie using her intuition and welcoming nature to learn that Matt's friend is a pregnant teenager. In the third episode, grandmother Jenny is visited by Annie, who is concerned because Jenny has Leukemia. Annie finds that Jenny is spending her final days living life to its fullest. When Annie expresses her concerns about Jenny resting and watching her cholesterol, Jenny says that she'll be resting soon enough and she's not supposed to be watching it anymore.
* HolidayVolunteering: In the episode "Here Comes Santa Claus," each of the kids has to do a good deed over the holiday season. Matt becomes a mall Santa, Mary volunteers at the soup kitchen (and is happy that a hot boy was recruited alongside her), and Simon is determined to help Ruthie keep her faith in Santa.
* HollywoodAtheist: ImpliedTrope with Rose, Simon's fiancee. Rose apparently never understood the fundamentals of Christianity, including the nativity scene (see FridgeLogic on the YMMV page), and always seemed skeptical of the idea of Jesus. She attempted to try to learn some Christian fundamentals, though only to appease the Camdens. Moreover, her selfish and self-righteous behavior made her into this trope, or almost anyway.
* HollywoodGenetics: A common joke in the show's {{Hatedom}} was LittleMissSnarker Ruthie either being adopted or the product of an affair with the gardener, because Mackenzie Rosman had a noticeably darker complexion and less [[WhiteAngloSaxonProtestant WASP]]y features than the rest of her TV family.
* HollywoodHeartAttack: Two aversions, with a WoobieOfTheWeek (in "Red Tape" - season 2) and Eric himself (start of season 4). In the case of the former, he actually had heartburn, whereas in Eric's case, his heart attack (caused by stress) is mostly played realistically, with the episode dropping hints along the way. Neither pass out during their heart attacks, nor portray them [[SubvertedTrope stereo]][[HollywoodHeartAttack typically]].
* {{Hypocrite}}:
** When Lucy's encouraged by Eric to do her Confirmation in the church, she asks to read about other religions first. Eric acts like he is totally fine with this and gives her books about other religions. When she tells him to have become interested in Buddhism however, Eric says to Annie he will never let that happen, and then straight-out ''blackmails'' Lucy (by threatening to else punish her for something) into doing the Confirmation. Not only, why would he give her the books and fake to be so open-minded about other religions if he wouldn't let her make her own choice anyway, but worse, wouldn't a minister want people to commit to a religion out of their own conviction and faith, instead of being blackmailed into it?
** When Mary decides not to go to college and instead take jobs as a waitress and other low-paying jobs, her parents are repulsed by that. Ironically, some of the jobs she has are in joints her parents themselves hang out - so while the Camdens put on this facade of accepting all people, they really deem waiters and other not-requiring-a-college-degree jobs to be less worthy people. The real hypocrisy kicker comes 2 years later though, when Mary gets a job as an airline attendant - a better-paying, and requiring more professional training, job than those she had before - and they even react in horror to that too; Annie says "How could our kid that had so much promise in high school, end up as an airline attendant?".
** When TheUnfavorite Mary announces her marriage to Carlos to her family, they talk about it amongst themselves and say the marriage will probably be problematic because Mary and Carlos "are from different backgrounds, languages, religions". Not only is Carlos a man who happens to be from Puerto Rican descent but speaks English perfectly[[note]]Plus, he's turned his life around from being homeless before, and seems to be actually more mentally stable than fickle Mary.[[/note]], but the Camdens never objected to other people of different ethnicities being together before - [[UnfortunateImplications apparently that's o.k. ''as long as it's not '''my''' children''... They also apparently now deem Catholics not Christians]], [[DoubleStandard while other daughter Lucy herself also married a man who was Catholic]].
** "Tunes", again. The episode is basically saying that people shouldn't listen to rap music because it adds to ignorance about prejudice against women, but in the process, it implies that ''all'' rap listeners (including women themselves) are misogynistic, which itself is ignorant and prejudiced to the people who listen to that music. Also in earlier seasons, in some episodes, you could hear some of the Camden kids listen to rap music, though this wouldn't be noticeable on first glance.
** Martin's season 10 teen pregnancy storyline. In season 9, Martin basically gave Simon a talk about the "evils" of premarital sex, and stated that he would never have sex until marriage. Flashforward several months later, Sandy comes to Martin announcing her pregnancy with his child, the result of an affair that occurred over the summer. More over, Martin blatantly ignored Sandy during much of her pregnancy, and pretended that he wasn't the father for much of the time.
* InsaneTrollLogic:
** In "Tunes", when Eric sees Simon sagging his pants, this is on the lines of what he says: "Do you know where that fashion trend started? Prison. Do you know where you're going if you keep sagging your pants? Prison!"
** In "Just You Wait and See", Julie remains adamant at not wanting to have a baby with her husband, from whom she separated, despite the fact she's ''eight months pregnant'', and also implies that her brother is to blame for her marriage because she thinks she does the opposite of what he wants. [[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer Her logic is different from our Earth logic]].
** In-universe example: Lucy's friend Rod speculates that the reason why the girls' basketball coach cancelled the season was that the team hired trained Russian girls to be on the team to ensure wins, which he justifies by stating that the economic collapse of the Soviet Union (which fell in 1991, a full ''eight years'' before the episode aired) would make this possible. Lucy calls him out on him, and states the real reason being that the girls' grades slipped.
* InsistentTerminology: In season 5, about the time daughter Mary was "ruining her life" / turning into TheUnfavorite ButtMonkey, an episode was dedicated to Eric ''[[CatchPhrase repeatedly]]'' saying to other characters "''it's not '''mad''', it's '''angry''' ''"! (The point seemed to be that Eric was himself very angry at Mary but supressing / denying that feeling, while the whole [[PlayedForDrama situation]] with her was worsening his heart condition.)
* InspirationallyDisadvantaged: Several episodes have Eric, Annie, or one of the kids helping or being helped by an individual with a disability. In "The Kid Can't Stay in the Picture," when Simon talks about all the people his family has helped, the InspirationallyDisadvantaged individuals are designated as "Angel."
* ItsAllMyFault: Lucy believes this when her friend is killed in a car accident.[[note]]This was based on something that really happened to Beverley Mitchell.[[/note]]
* IvyLeagueForEveryone: Matt is the only one to go off to an Ivy League school, specifically the medical school at Columbia University, though technically he spent four years at the local college in Glenoak before graduating and leaving for New York.
* JesusTaboo: How a show about ''Christians'', with the lead character a ''minister'', avoids mentioning ''Christ'' more than about three times in eleven years is baffling. You probably have ExecutiveMeddling to blame for that.
* LastMinuteBabyNaming: Aunt Julie and her husband name their daughter "Erica" after Eric and Annie, after she is born.
* LawOfInverseFertility: When a show introduces numerous teen girls (plus, Annie) who unexpectedly got pregnant even if they used a condom or applied birth control, this trope is definitely in play.
* LikeGoesWithLike:
** An episode has Matt's BlackBestFriend and roommate, John, try to pair up him and Matt with a couple of women in the building and it's obvious that he'll be with the black one and Matt will be with the white one.
** Another episode has Simon's friend Nigel says that there's a desirable girl in his class who could have picked anyone to be her boyfriend and she picked him. Come to find out that she's black like him.
* LittleMissSnarker: Ruthie -- way, way back in the day.
* LonersAreFreaks: And not being in a committed relationship is a tragedy. Basically anytime the Camden kids come across a loner, they inevitably have to solve some sort of problem involving them (e.g. [[ItMakesSenseInContext preventing a school shooting]]).
* LongLostUncleAesop: And they never come home for Thanksgiving...or anytime after their first episode, actually. An occasional plot device in order to teach the kids a valuable lesson, or to put to light a very serious topic that affects millions (e.g. alcoholism, homeless, domestic violence).
* LowSpeedChase: Simon, when a new driver, gets into a low speed car chase aided by his grandfather who has dementia but who is supposed to be helping him learn to drive.
* MassiveNumberedSiblings: The seven Camden kids.
* MiddleChildSyndrome: Lucy, at first. By the time she gets through it, Mary is out of hand, and the twins are toddlers. Simon is the middle child at this point, and his own problems promptly begin to mount...
* MoodWhiplash:
** A somewhat outside-the-fourth-wall case: For a time, ''7th Heaven'' was aired right before ''Series/{{Angel}}'', which one reviewer described as being akin to "Following up your glass of orange juice with a vodka chaser."
** Season 3's "Here Comes Santa Claus" gives us this little exchange about Mary describing Carlos:
-->'''Eric:''' Who's that? What happened to his arm?
-->'''Mary:''' That is Carlos. He got hit by a bus. Isn't he cute?
* MonochromeCasting: Out of 22 actors (plus a dog) credited in the opening credits during the show's decade-long run for no matter what length, only one has been a [[TokenMinority minority]].
* MusicalEpisode: The ninth-season Valentine's Day episode "[[http://www.televisionwithoutpity.com/show/7th_heaven/red_socks.php Red Socks]]."
* MySisterIsOffLimits: Matt's initial attitude towards any boy who dared to date Mary or Lucy.
* NaiveEverygirl: In the pilot Lucy is sensitive about starting her period and thus becoming a woman. She says that her type is Prince Charles because she bets that he is sensitive and shy.
* NewMediaAreEvil: Eric gets shot by a kid in one episode. The kid likes video games. See where this is going?
* NewTechnologyIsEvil: This show takes place during the end '90s - beginning '00s, right at the time the internet became booming and mobile phones became a serious thing. The family resisted for a long time to own or participate in any of this new technology. Eric was still using his infamous pager at a time most people had mobile phones. (Granted, the fact that the family were financially tight was also a factor). Eric did have a laptop from season 1 on, but it was implied that it was only strictly for ministry business use, and that it never had an internet connection.
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: No viewer who saw his tribute episode but didn't personally know the man can say "Staff Sgt. Dwight J. Morgan" without laughing.
* NoPeriodsPeriod: Averted, as both middle daughter Lucy and (years later) youngest daughter Ruthie got an episode dedicated to their getting their first period.[[note]]They had completely different attitudes about this, since to Lucy getting her period was A Very Big Deal, which she talked about with the rest of the family; while Ruthie shrugged it off and didn't really want to discuss it with the rest of the family.[[/note]]
* NosyNeighbor:
** Mrs. Beaker (infrequently) pops in and out of the Camdens in order to search through their business, and spread gossip about them.
** The Camdens could definitely count as well, given how much drama they conjure every week, mostly because they were trying to help someone, even when they didn't have to, and this was usually because they were either eavesdropping on people or just felt the need to do so.
* OddNameOut: A fairly subtle example, even for this show. Out of the Camdens, only Eric doesn't fit into the biblical FamilyThemeNaming (discounting extended members and later grandchildren); Matt, Mary, Lucy, Simon, Ruthie, and twins David and Sam are known biblical figures or shortened versions of their names, while Annie's name may be a diminutive for "Anne" as in Saint Anne, the mother of the Virgin Mary.[[note]]Granted, the name "Saint Anne" didn't show up in the canonical gospels or the Quran, where Mary is the only named woman, and her name was taken from New Testament apocrypha, of which the Gospel of James (written perhaps around 150) seems to be the earliest that mentions her and her husband Joachim. Saint Anne is patroness of unmarried women, housewives, women in labor, grandmothers, horseback riders, cabinet-makers, which in this case seems pretty fitting for Annie.[[/note]] This is hilarious considering that Eric is the ''reverend'' of the show.[[note]]His name "Eric" however means "leader" or "powerful" in the Old Norse language.[[/note]]
* OlderThanTheyLook: Beverley Mitchell, who portrayed middle daughter Lucy, was a year ''older'' than Jessica Biel, who played oldest daughter Mary.
* OnceAnEpisode: Look up and down this trope list, and chances are this trope can apply to any other trope here.
* OnceASeason: Almost every season has some plot involving either a pregnant woman (more likely, teenager) or a teen mother.
* OneSteveLimit: Most played straight, averted with Mary Camden and Patty-Mary Kinkirk, Kevin's sister. Plus, Ruthie Camden was named after her paternal grandmother, also named Ruth.
* OnlyAFleshWound: When Eric gets shot, it's treated with all the seriousness of sprained ankle. The doctors give him a bandage and an arm sling and send him home the same day.
* OedipusComplex: The reverend has ''issues'' with his militaristic father.
* OutOfFocus: Mary, Matt, and Simon in later seasons. In Mary's case, she doesn't even appear in the episode where she ''gives birth to her son'', nor does she appear at all in season 9, while her storylines - her separation from Carlos, giving up parental rights of her son, her subsequent reconciliation with her husband - continued off-screen. She returns for the season 10 finale, where she is revealed to be pregnant again. In season 11, Mary (alongside Matt and Simon) doesn't show up with her family, though is mentioned in the passing.
* OverprotectiveDad: Eric was PapaWolf towards his daughters.
* PassionateSportsGirl: Mary Camden plays on the girls' basketball team and is seen as a girl who would give the guys a hard time because of her self-confident nature.
* PickUpBabesWithBabes: Matt and Simon take the twins to the promenade, thinking they'll attract family-oriented girls with good values. Unfortunately, the only girl who talks to them chastises them for having the babies out so late in the cold.
* PlotParallel: ''7th Heaven'' had a habit of having separate plotlines, one innocent and one serious, that interconnected to drive home an {{Aesop}} even more [[{{Anvilicious}} anviliciously]].
* PostScriptSeason: The show was renewed for an 11th season three days after the series finale, leaving the writers to figure out what to do with a much smaller budget.
* PrecisionFStrike: When Eric in the "Who Knew?" episode is confronting Matt about having found a marijana joint of, presumably, Matt, in the house (which [[BerserkButton vexes Eric beyond recogition]]), he drops a ''[[https://youtu.be/JB24X05F0wI?t=167 Damn it!]]''. Taking into account the fact that he's a minister, has a strong Christian identity, and plays himself to be very "Straight Edge", this swearing of ''Damn it!'' seems to actually be a case of OOCIsSeriousBusiness...
* PromotionToOpeningTitles: The cast members deemed important enough to rate the opening credits change too often (almost every episode, starting in season 4, to reflect the cast in the episode) and too randomly to attach an adequate adverb to. The only consist members in the credits were Stephen Collins, Catherine Hicks, and Beverley Mitchell, though Hicks was absent in several episodes for season 11.
* PutOnABus: The show did this [[PunctuatedForEmphasis ALL. THE. TIME]]. In the series finale, all of the characters leave on a bus (or RV, as the case may be). Some examples include:
** Mary, after Jessica Biel's aforementioned escape from ContractualPurity, in season 5. She returned full-time for season 6, then left again in season 7, and appeared sporadically in seasons 7 and 8. Mary was completely absent for season 9 as her plotlines continued off-screen, before returning for the final time in season 10 finale.
** Matt and Sarah moved to New York for medical school at the end of season 6, making limited appearances until season 10. While in New York, they had a DayInTheLimelight episode in season 8, though neither were main characters at the time.
** Simon was Put on a Bus for season 8, after being accepted into early admission at a college after [[spoiler: he accidentally killed a boy in a hit-and-run crash that left him fearing retaliation from the boy's older brother]]. He got off the bus for season 10, before jumping right back on, remaining off-screen for season 11.
** Ruthie was in Scotland for a cultural exchange program in season 11. However, TheBusCameBack after six episodes. Ruthie's absence was the result of budget cuts in order to fund the [[PostScriptSeason season]].
** Annie missed two episodes in season 11 to take care of Mary after she gave birth to her twins. Her absence as well was the result of budget cuts.
* RedheadsAreUncool: There is an episode where Mary's high school friends tease a girl with frizzy red hair for wearing flannel and being fat.
* SatelliteLoveInterest: They were only a handful of romantic interests for the Camden kids that had some depth. One notable example would be Meredith, who has little depth and only functions to serve as Martin's girlfriend and Ruthie's friend; this is even more jarring when you consider Meredith was in the opening credits! (For nine episodes, but ''still'').
* SelfHarm: In one episode, Mary catches Nicole (a new friend of her sister's; portrayed by future ''Series/{{Smallville}}'' star Allison Mack) self-harming in her bathroom. Mary tells Eric (her father), who then tells Nicole's father. Eric gives him a card and a number to call so they can get help for Nicole. Nicole is then PutOnABus.
* SexIsEvil: ''Unmarried'' sex only[[note]]Married sex was good, seen how some subtle references that Eric and Annie were regularly getting it on (see SickeninglySweethearts), were sometimes present and treated as healthy and sweet.[[/note]] Well, this is a religious show. Also, {{Anvilicious}} (and inaccurate) about how birth control will ''always'' fail; many of the many teenage girls that unintentionally got pregnant in this show mention how they got pregnant [[ButWeUsedACondom despite of using protection]]; in the episode where Annie (mistakenly, since [[{{Irony}} she herself]] turns out to be the pregnant one) accuses Mary of having gotten pregnant, when Mary says she can't be, Annie cynically shouts "Why, because your birth control is infallible?!"; and Annie later reveals to Lucy (who herself is having a pregnancy scare while on the pill) that she got pregnant with the twins despite being on the pill.
* SickeninglySweethearts:
** Eric and Annie. When Annie is pregnant with the twins, the younger kids don't want her to drive them to school because, as Lucy puts it, "The fact that there are five of us is already proof that Mom and Dad can't keep their hands off each other."
** A late-season episode has them get so worked up by the sight of another couple kissing that they sneak off to their basement ''during a dinner party'' to have sex.
* StayingWithFriends: The Camdens' house was basically a revolving door for any friend/acquaintance/random kid who couldn't stay at their own house for whatever reason
* TeenDrama: ''7th Heaven'' pretty much defines this trope.
* TeenPregnancy: There have been numerous examples, such as teen mom Mary's friend Corey Conway, as well as the teen dad example of Mary's ex-boyfriend Wilson (who later married Corey).
* ThatMakesMeFeelAngry: What passed for dialogue was often alternating [[CharacterFilibuster character filibusters]] combined with this trope, in which the characters were analyzing their own and others' emotions ad nauseum
* TheReasonYouSuckSpeech: During Mary's PutOnABus episode, each family member gives her a speech during their intervention that all go along the lines of "we love you and want you to get better". Except for little Ruthie, who lays into her sister for going into BrokenPedestal status to her.
* ThreeSuccessfulGenerations: Mary has the confidence and ability to want to play in the Women's National Basketball Association someday, Annie is the vastly knowledgeable mother, and Ruth wants to visit the children more than once a year to influence them.
-->'''The Colonel:''' Well, we're lucky to have Annie and Mary. You know, our Mary has enough salt to make jerky.
-->'''Grandma Ruth:''' That Annie, she's always been a doer. She's not afraid to get her hands dirty.
* TokenMinority: The show loved to introduced minority characters that rarely lasted an episode, mostly to tell an {{Aesop}} or to tell the audience that "Hey look, Glenoak's diverse!" The longest-running minority on the show was Sergeant Michaels, but we don't know too much about him (even after being on the show for its entire run).
* TomboyAndGirlyGirl: Mary and Lucy are close in age and share a room so there's quite a bit of interaction between them. Mary is an aspiring basketball star, quite capable of physically defending herself against men if needed (or even [[https://youtu.be/A-gi5xI6KMM?t=57 dunking a guy's head into a toilet]]), who looks down on her insecure sister for being a mall rat, wanting to be a cheerleader, and being boy-crazy (one episode even is about their arguing about Lucy's slavishly following the book ''The Rules'' (a purported "guide to women on how to get the man you have a crush on into a relationship") and Mary's opposing that).
* TookALevelInJerkass: Annie, who ended up at her worst in Season 6 when she would lash out at Eric constantly for no reason, as well as banishing Matt, Lucy, Simon, and Ruthie from the house for protesting the undeserved preferential treatment that Mary was getting. Subverted with Mary, who was already a jerk to begin with, but was essentially vilified in the later seasons.
* {{Tuckerization}}: Associate pastor Chandler Hampton for series creator Brenda Hampton.
* TheUnfavorite: Mary, for sure. See also ButtMonkey.
* UnexpectedPositive: Mary must undergo a physical before she leaves for basketball camp that summer. The doctor ropes Annie into having one too, and this is how she finds out she's pregnant with the twins. (But not before an episode-long assumption that ''Mary'' is the pregnant one due to the doctor mixing up their results.)
* VerySpecialEpisode: Pretty much every episode. Not particularly surprising considering series creator Brenda Hampton had previously written for ''Series/{{Blossom}}'' (itself notable for its frequent very special episodes).
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: Meredith was Ruthie's friend and Martin's [[SatelliteLoveInterest girlfriend]], though she disappeared after she stopped false pregnancy rumors about Ruthie with an explanation for her absence never given. Even more jarring if you consider that she was in the main credits (for nine episodes, but still).
* WildTeenParty: There have been a few of these over the show's run. The most notable party was thrown by Matt and Mary in season one when Eric and Annie went out on Valentine’s Day. It starts out like any average party but gets out of hand when more guests show up, someone sneaks beer into the Camden house, and the dog Happy gets out and hit by a car. She gets better though. Another one appears in the sixth season episode "Drunk", which was about [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Simon going to a party and having too much to drink]].
* WhereDidWeGoWrong: The Camdens' reaction to Mary's rebellion towards the middle of the series.

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