YMMV: Adventures in Odyssey

Examples from the radio series:

  • All There Is to Know About "The Crying Game": It isn't revealed until the last few episodes of the thirty-plus-episode Novacom Saga that Novacom's ultimate plan is to take over the entire world through mind control. Guess what the first thing on everyone's lips is when they describe it?
  • Anvilicious: All episodes end with a short snippet where a presenter summarizes the lesson of the week and dishes out the appropriate Bible verses.
  • Author's Saving Throw: The writers goofed and gave Lucy's last name as Cunningham in one episode and Schultz in another. The explanation became that her father died and Shultz was her stepfather's last name, and from then on she was Lucy Cunningham-Schultz.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Richard Maxwell, by collective virtue of being quick-witted, complex, good-looking, and generally making a career out of great achievements.
  • Evil Is Cool: True to the spirit of the show, Dr. Blackgaard's acts of evil aren't romanticized one bit, but all the same...
  • Fridge Brilliance: Campbell County Community College accepted Eugene when he was VERY YOUNG, and considering he was (as far as the state knew, anyhow) an orphan, they also took care of him. He stayed with them out of gratitude.
  • Genius Bonus: In the episode "Stage Fright"; a School Play where the Jones and Parker Detective Agency are investigating a mysterious noise is held at the Taft-Hartley Theater. In universe the theater is named after two local actors; but it also serves as a reference to the 1947 Taft-Hartley Act; a bill passed in response to a series of 1946 strikes that outlawed the "closed shop"; sought to prevent Communists from gaining leadership in unions and allowed states to institute "right-to-work" laws that would prevent unions from excluding non-union workers.
  • Idiot Plot: The episode "Buried Sin". It's mildly understandable that a kid would think he'd committed murder when a gun he was holding went off and killed someone, and that the descendant of said victim who is currently a child may think that, but Whit? Pretty much everyone else? No... That's not murder. No court in the US would charge him with murder for accidentally killing someone. I mean, considering his age, he probably wouldn't even get a manslaughter charge. His father would have been charged with negligence for leaving the gun where his son could get to it, and for not teaching his son proper gun safety. The child would not have been held responsible.
  • Irony: An early episode about facing your fears ended terrifying several children who had never had such a problem before.
  • Nightmare Fuel:
    • The episode where Eugene experiences what Hell would be like for him.
    • Dr Blackgaard has a few of these, but his resurrection is particularly horrific. Abraham Lincoln going on a killing spree? And he was about to kill a little girl before Whit intervened.
    • The Marquis of Matrimony from "The Marriage Feast" (an adaption of the story in the Book of Matthew). Unlike the Duke of Terra and the Countess of Bovine, he is against the emissaries right from the start, and then orders them to be tortured; which leads to the actual death of one of the said emissaries.
    • Near the end of "The Imagination Station, Revisited", when Kelly is trying to leave a malfunctioning Imagination Station and desperately trying not to see the crucifixion of Jesus.
  • One-Scene Wonder: The episode "Another Man's Shoes", introduced an invention of Whit's called "The Trans-muter", which (in a controlled environment) enabled a person to experience life from the perspective of another person. Aside from a passing mention to the invention in an episode that aired a short time later, the invention hasn't been used or mentioned since. note 
  • Tear Jerker The biggest, for me, is in the Novacom arc, when Whit is taking Connie home from their FBI encounter after he told her that Mitch died, and she says she's OK. Whit lets her out, and she comes back to the car a few moments later, opens the door and says "I'm not OK, Whit! I'm not OK." Even though I know how it turns out, that scene never fails to get the waterworks going.
    • "Mortal Coil", "Gone", "Underground Railroad", "Where is thy sting", "Karen", "Forever, Amen"... There are quite a few tearjerker episodes.
      • Meta example for "Mortal Coil". It originally aired very close to the Thanksgiving holiday so many families only heard the first part, leading to many hysterical children who were very worried that Whit had died.
    • Life Expectancy, in the most recent album. Connie's mom dies of a heart attack, it kills her instantly.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: The show's audience is undeniably children, but there are episodes that sort of blur the line and don't seem to be appropriate for young children, particularly for the conservative Christian audience the show was designed for. In "Forever, Amen", for instance, A boy blames himself for his mother's miscarriage because he wished he wouldn't have a younger brother. That's a downright tragic and terrifying idea for adults, let alone children.
  • The Woobie
    • Mandy Straussberg may be the biggest one on the show to also be a recurring character. It became worse when her parents separated more or less concurrently with the story arc concerning Eugene's father.
    • Wooton Bassett, every time his past comes up.

Examples from the video series

  • Nightmare Fuel: "A Twist In Time" features Dylan and Sal entering the (not yet unveiled) Room Of Consequences and being shown a very grim future where they have been missing for decades and Whit and their families exhausted themselves (physically and financially) trying to find the boys, and as a result, Whit is implied to have passed away penniless and in very poor health, Whit's End is in shambles, and an elderly and nearly senile Eugene is trying to keep the place standing. At least it was just a simulation and (hopefully) isn't the actual future of Whit's End and the people involved with it, but still, Dylan and Sal were lucky to get through that without being traumatized in some way.
  • Off Model: The animation could get sloppy at times. One example from early on in "Flight To The Finish" shows Eugene, wearing a lab coat, examining a top slathered in a performance-enhancing compound that Whit just made, only for the top to explode in his face. Not only is Eugene suddenly in his usual trademark outfit after the explosion, but if you look closely, he is in his newfound Ash Face state a split-second before the explosion actually occurs!
    • When it comes to cover-art, we also have the cover of "Baby Daze", which is drawn in a slightly different art-style from the series and sticks out like a sore thumb as a result. See here.