- Award Snub: Susan Lucci finally won a Daytime Emmy on her nineteenth nomination (a record in that category). One of the most famous Award Snubs ever.
- Big Lipped Alligator Moment: Erica tells off a bear.
Erica: I AM ERICA KANE, and YOU are a FILTHY BEAST!
- Complete Monster: Michael Cambias is a cut above the typical Soap Opera villain. Coming to Pine Valley with a goal of taking over all the major corporations based there, he utilizes spies and starts by using Erica Kane’s daughters, Bianca and Kendall, to try and take over Erica’s company/steal top-secret formulas/documents, etc. Exploiting Kendall’s connection to Erica and her many issues with her mother, Michael (initially using an alias) seduces Kendall and proceeds to send one of his spies and secret lover, Lena, to seduce Bianca. Lena winds up falling for Bianca but is forced to continue working for Michael due to threats against Lena’s mother. Kendall, meanwhile, finds out about the affair between Michael and Lena and decides to become a double agent. When Michael catches her in his condo trying to steal his files, he attempts to rape Kendall but Erica stops him and saves her daughter. After Erica double crosses him by pretending to leave her company, Michael tries to rape Erica but Kendall manages to stop him and save her mother. When he's thwarted from that, he goes and rapes Bianca—getting back at all three women in one fell swoop, as Bianca is simultaneously Kendall's sister, Erica's daughter, and Lena's girlfriend.
- Crowning Moment of Funny: There are several over the years, but surely the food fight between Adam and Erica counts. More recently, when Dixie proposed to Tad and Tad accidentally turned on his cell phone. Opal's phone number was the one that accidentally hit and Opal answered the phone. The clan of Tad's, Dixie's family and friends were at the house with Opal who promptly put it one speaker. When the conversation between Tad and Dixie was finished, everyone who heard it began to cheer. Tad and Dixie heard the cheers and the look on Tad's face was priceless.
- Designated Hero: Pretty much all the "good" guys has been this at some point (except for maybe Bianca), it just seems like the writers can't portray a "good" action without it looking, or being, off. One example being where Edmund (who has been called the nicest man in the world so many times before and after) tries to drug Maria into remembering him without her knowing it.
- Designated Villain: JR Chandler during his first custody battle with Babe. Even though Babe knowingly lied about their baby (first passing off Bianca's daughter as their own and then lied about their son being alive), committed adultery and ruined the relationships JR had built with other characters, he was portrayed as an evil miser for daring to fight for his son. Even the majority of Pine Valley turned on him and sided with Babe—including Bianca!
- Continuing a tradition from his father Adam, who was portrayed as this during his custody battle for JR with ex-wife Dixie. Even though Dixie had been sleeping around and her latest conquest was a barely-legal teenage boy, pretty much everyone blasted Adam for his completely legitimate concerns about Dixie's behavior and her fitness as a parent.
- Draco in Leather Pants: JR, alcoholic, check, addict, check, abusive, check, has a dark side, check, unhinged, check, intriguing, double check. He's got a huge fan base, and even when the writers felt they went too far with his darker side, after he nearly strangled his wife Babe to death, they quickly tried to bury the lead and pair her off with Josh, another popular character that was much more stable, despite his own set of scruples, that back fired quickly, calling Josh a home-wrecker and Babe a slut, though in her case they weren't too far off. The final shot of the show during it's run on ABC had him shooting off a gun in the midst of a party with the entirety of the cast in attendance for Pete sake.
- Ensemble Darkhorse: Eden Riegel, who took over the role of Bianca in 2000, and remained until 2005 (plus two short stints afterwards), winning an Emmy in the process. To this day, she remains one of the most respected actresses in daytime.
- Harsher in Hindsight: A very close subversion. In 1997, Maria Santos was "killed" in a plane crash, devastating her husband Edmund. 4 years later, on September 11, 2001, Maria's portrayer, Eva LaRue was scheduled to be a passenger on one of the planes that would later hit the World Trade Center. She postponed to a later flight because she wanted to sleep in, thus saving not only her life and that of her unborn child (she was six months pregnant at the time), but avoiding a chillingly accurate Real Life version of her character's fate—at the time, LaRue was married to Edmund's portrayer, John Callahan, making the similarities even more eerie.
- Hilarious in Hindsight: In 2009, Brot and Natalia won a dance marathon. In 2011, Brot's portrayer, J.R. Martinez, won the Dancing with the Stars mirrorball trophy.
- Moral Event Horizon: Dr. Greg Madden, starting when we learn he passed off Kendall's egg as Greenlee's to create Greenlee's child with Ryan. As the show progresses, it is revealed that in years past, he took Erica's fetus (originally aborted) when he implanted her embryo into his own wife without Erica's knowledge, thus resulting in Erica and Jeff Martin's newfound son, Josh. Dixie's baby, Kate, was also taken away from her by this asshole at one time. Worse yet, he convinces Erica's daughter, Kendall, to give her (formerly thought-to-be-Greenlee's) baby up for adoption, and it takes a while for Erica and Ryan to get her back to her senses. Sending Kendall off on a yacht full of other women whom he tried to brainwash, and then telling Erica that he doesn't know of her daughter's whereabouts? Hoo, boy! I think we know who we're rooting for here, and it ain't the doc! Following this, Erica attempted to murder Madden after finding out he stole her fetus without bothering to tell her about it, he treated herself and Josh like a weird ass science experiment, and that he was screwing up her daughter, Kendall's, life. It was Tad Martin who ultimately put Madden in the grave when he buried Madden alive to die a slow, agonizing death. Although, save for Josh, much of the town was planning his demise at this point.
- Arguably Babe Carey after finding out her daughter was actually Bianca Montgomery's thought-to-be-dead daughter. She decided to keep the baby and not tell anyone the truth. She kept this lie going for an entire year until she found out her own thought-to-be-dead son was still alive. Only then did she finally tell the truth to Bianca. Her response? A well deserved titanium right hand (one of the best slaps in the business).
- Moment of Awesome: Bianca killing Michael after he raped her. She shows up at his hideout, blows his brains out. Simple. MoA within a MoA? He was so hated before and after raping her (especially since he was acquitted due to lack of evidence as Bianca showered and burned her clothes), that when she turned herself in (after repressing the memory of the murder), the judge all but gave her a pat on the back.
- Josh Duhamel's final appearance featured his character Leo tackling his crazed mother (who kidnapped his wife Greenlee) on the bridge of a waterfall. Yes it gave way, but for defending his wife at the cost of his own life? Leo died like a boss.
- Never Live It Down: Bobby Martin disappearing after going up to the attic to get his skis, possibly the most infamous case of Chuck Cunningham Syndrome ever.
- Nightmare Fuel: Bianca's rape. Arguably the single most horrific moment in the history of AMC.
- Portmanteau Couple Name: Kinks, Zendall, Rylee, Barf, BAM, Breese, Minx.
- Retroactive Recognition: As is par for the course with soaps, many of the show's actors have gone on to fame in primetime or even in film.
- Apparently, Anton Lang was so devastated after losing Kendall and Julia, that after finishing medical school, he decided to become a terrorist.
- Shipto Ship Combat: Mostly revolving around Bianca and her lovers, Frankie/Maggienote , Lena, Reese, and Marissa.
- What an Idiot: Adam Chandler disapproves of ex-wife Dixie's behavior—sleeping around, and her latest conquest is the 18-year-old Brian—and starts making plans to file for full custody of their son. Adam's daughter Haley—Brian's ex-girlfriend—tries to warn Dixie about this.
You'd Expect: Dixie to cool it with Brian, especially since she knows full well how ruthless Adam can be (he once had her declared insane and committed to a mental hospital).
Instead: The moron invites Brian to move in with her. The private detective Adam hired snaps photos of this, giving him the final evidence to prove that Dixie is an unfit mother. Dixie caps off her stupidity by evoking the Never My Fault trope and refusing to see where she bears any responsibility for the whole mess.
- The Woobie: Bianca.