YMMV / Artemis Fowl


  • Alternative Character Interpretation: The first book deliberately aims for this by making sure that every time Artemis does the right thing, he can explain it away as Pragmatic Villainy. The psychiatrist who narrates the book argues that Artemis is a sociopath (though admittedly not a standard case by any sense of the imagination), and warns of the tendency to view him as more noble than he really is. Later books make him more of a hero, though.
    • Him becoming a hero is explicitly stated to be character development. In the Eternity Code, just before the mind wipe, he says that he might become the monster seen at the start of the series. The next book reveals that he was right.
  • Anvilicious: Book 6: Go green, and you'll save the krakens, stop poisoning fairies with Spelltrophy, and keep the world from dying. Plus, Artemis Sr. puts emission filters on every vehicle they own, including the jet and helicopter. Though the series has dropped environmental anvils all over the place since its beginning.
  • Ass Pull: Eoin loves this trope or owes it money. Technology of the series doesn't appear to have any consistency: numerous vital plot points happened just because fairy technology happens to be capable to do something we weren't informed of or has a limitation never brought up before.
    • One short story in the companion book is set in the period between the first and the second book, aka when Artemis was still a egoistic criminal mastermind and Mulch was believed to be dead by the LEP. Holly goes to stop Mulch in his tracks, but she isn't supposed to know Mulch is even alive... Well, let's make him wear a mask! Voice? Did we mention all the dwarves' voices are exactly the same and even the dwarves themselves can't tell one from another? Because now they are.
    • Dwarf biology can generally be relied upon to produce one new secret trump card for Mulch to get out of trouble with per book.
    • Magic has a bunch of new rules too: Grease is toxic for people with magic in them, animals can get glands extracted to enhance power, runes only need one spark to do something powerful wizards can't and mesmerizing on the fair folk works except when it doesn't.
  • Complete Monster: Opal Koboi serves as the Overarching Villain of the series. A pixie debuting in the second book, The Arctic Incident, she got her position at the head of her company by driving the previous owner, her own father, to insanity. Along with Briar Cudgeon, she organized the Goblin rebellion, taking advantage of the violent nature of the Goblins and planning to betray them to take over. When Holly and Artemis beat her, she plotted her revenge, and unleashed a complex plan in the fourth book, The Opal Deception. She escaped from prison using a clone duplicate, cloning is considered an unforgivable act to faeries, as one creates new life which dies easily and cannot think for itself. She had Julius Root killed, framing Holly, and then she attacked and mind raped a very prominent humanitarian, and had him send a probe down into the earth, to reveal the Faerie people. Doing so, she expected to cause a war between the two races. In the sixth book, The Time Paradox, it is revealed that she had been experimenting on critically endangered animals to make herself more powerful. In the eighth and final Book, The Last Guardian, her past self came to break her out of prison, and her present self hypnotizes two other pixies, and has them hold her past self, and murder her, while she pleads for her to stop. Having killed her past self, any and all things she has made or influenced in her company explode. All technology malfunctions, with even humans having their planes go down in mid air, and global communications stop. She then manipulates a number of Faerie ghosts who have been trapped on earth and want to be released so she could kill off all the humans and take power.
  • Die for Our Ship: Depending on whether you ship Hartemis or Artemin, either Minerva Paradizo or Holly.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Trouble has become quite popular, thanks in part to his Hero of Another Story status and rampant badassery.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple: Artemis/Holly is by far the biggest ship in the fandom, even back when they hated each other. The fact that Colfer keeps teasing it despite claiming nothing will ever happen doesn't help. The series ends without it being strictly sunk or canonized, so he apparently decided to let fans believe what they wanted about it.
  • Genius Bonus: The cryptography puzzles along the bottom of each book (and on the book covers) are more of a Patience Bonus, but there are little references throughout the book that just make it so much more fun if you happen to know them, or realize what they meant three years later.
  • Homage The ending to The Eternity Code is suspiciously similar to that of Dead to Rights, which came out a year earlier.
  • Idiot Plot: The entire berserker threat would never have occurred if they had simply killed the future Opal BEFORE they put her in the reactor tank.
    • It is admittedly implied to be a result of fairy society being based off of Actual Pacifism, so that they are neither legally allowed nor morally inclined to shoot a prisoner. Although that explanation doesn't make much sense given Artemis and Butler were also present and seemingly neither of them even thought of it.
      • They were present in the control room in Haven, not the cell block in Atlantis. They could suggest it but not do it. They probably did think of it but knew there was no point saying anything.
    • The Atlantis Complex: For starter said complex is pretty much how you glue the Idiot Ball on Artemis, the elven space project being accessible by a prison guard (and existing)and no one but Turnbull and the old fairy in Vietnam knowing about the magic spark trick.
  • Inferred Holocaust: In The Last Guardian, a good chunk of technology, both human and fairy, ceases to function. This leads to chaos on both ends, but the humans bare the brunt of it as cities darken, people loot, medical equipment is useless, and airplanes fall from the sky. Nobody particularly dwells on this, and the narrator considers this a good thing.
    • Not to mention all of the people in cities who will starve to death because they can't get food shipped in, submariners who are trapped in steel tombs miles beneath the waves, miners stuck in shafts with no way out, and anybody on a boat, who will be most likely stranded in the middle of the ocean. The book also stated that anything connected to Opal Koboi, exploded, which includes most of our modern technology, such as pacemakers. But hey, at least people aren't distracted by TV anymore!
    • Justified: the narrator ends up being Holly Short, a fairy, so it makes sense as to how she wouldn't dwell on the human deaths.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Turnbull got a Cry for the Devil before dying with his loved one but the guy has the highest bodycount after Opal, brainwash people and was first introduced torturing an officer for another petty scheme. Only reason why Artemis would say he can't see him as a villain is because he is unaware of most of it because he was too busy guilt-tripping. Even his relationship with his loved one isn't that great when you keep in mind he brainwashed her into staying with him forever.
  • The Untwist: In the first chapter of The Last Guardian, Dr Argon ominously wonders if it is really possible that Artemis has been cured of the Atlantis Complex in record time. He has, and the only thing we hear of the Complex for the rest of the book are a few fleeting mentions.
    • Though it does seem to have badly damaged his self-confidance.
  • Values Resonance: Despite being said in his time as a mob boss, Artemis Fowl Sr's line about buying gold as a reliable investment and keeping it safe seems far more resonant in modern times.


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