YMMV / Code Lyoko

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: XANA, because little is actually established about him/her/it, can be translated anywhere from misunderstood, going for some vague goal in its programming, bugged, to a monster. XANA might have gone insane from the horrors of humanity. This blog explains it further around 12 paragraphs in.
  • Awesome Music:
    • The theme song, despite having cheesy lyrics, is extremely catchy. Worth noting is that it's a lot less cheesy in French as opposed to English. Both versions are total Ear Worms, though. However, translated, the two versions pretty much mean the same thing. The French version is actually a lot more repetitive.
    • Everyone loves the awesome virtualization theme.
    • "XANA Attacks!" is the ominous and oppressive-sounding leitmotif of the Big Bad in the series that signifies when things are getting dangerous, and the melody appears in other fast paced battle themes like "XANA's Monsters" and "Facebook Battle 2".
    • William's battle theme. Very much the Theme Music Power-Up.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
    • Jérémie. He's either an Adorkable, well-meaning guy or a selfish Designated Hero who treats his friends like crap and is the cause of the show's plot in the first place.
    • William is either a cool badass worthy of being a Lyoko Warrior or a pointless piece of ship interference. This decreased as the show went on and developed him more, with him joining the group and getting possessed by XANA into becoming The Dragon.
  • Bizarro Episode: "XANA's Kiss" is one of the most noteworthy, odd episodes in the entire series. Basically, XANA's polymorphic clone goes around the campus shapeshifting into other people to randomly kiss other characters in order to break up the Lyoko Warriors. While it does almost work, one has to wonder why his ultimate plan required undergoing such extremes. It doesn't help that the villain drops this plan completely from the second act and goes back to trying to kill them with his powers again.
  • Counterpart Comparison: Aelita has gained a lot of comparisons to Cortana due to the two of them being adorable virtual girls with hacking abilities.
  • Cult Classic: The show has gained an incredible amount of popularity and has gone down as one of Cartoon Network's best programs in some circles.
  • Cut-and-Paste Translation:
    • Averted: The cartoon series was translated into English by the same company that produced the series (MoonScoop), so aside from a feeble attempt at convincing us the show took place in America (calling Euros "dollars", a character proposing an exchange program with France [England in the original], etc.) the English script is fairly faithful.
    • But played completely straight with the Subdigitals CD, where all but three or four of the songs had their lyrics junked and rewritten for English release, with less than stellar results.
  • Damsel Scrappy: Aelita was this for the first two seasons due to the fact that she was completely useless in battle and was mostly escorted safely to deactivate towers while the others fended off attacking monsters. In fact, it's very easy to make a drinking game out of how many times she gets endangered in the series as a whole. While she does Take a Level in Badass in the third season via Energy Fields, she still manages to get in a lot of trouble due to either: A) The Scyphozoa, or B) XANA-William (Though it is justifiable in both cases, given that the Scyphozoa is Nigh Invulnerable and XANA-William is basically a tank) and requires rescuing from the other warriors.
  • Designated Hero: Jérémie in the first season comes across as this for quite a few viewers. Usually, the main conflict in the real world tends to be caused by him accidentally and he returns to the past to fix his own mistakes. It also doesn't help that he comes across as a Mean Boss towards his friends who risk their lives on Lyoko for him. Fortunately, he does get better afterwards.
  • Designated Villain: Sissi Delmas often during the first season. While she was the Alpha Bitch, several of the heroes were as guilty of just as reprehensible behavior, including against her and her cronies, yet we are supposed to root for them and against Sissi for no really defined reason. The prequel makes this worse, as it reveals that the heroes' feud against Sissi was their fault to begin with and she became the Alpha Bitch in response. Thankfully, Character Development for both parties in the progressing seasons fixed things.
  • Die for Our Ship:
    • William was despised by some fans for getting in the way of Ulrich and Yumi's relationship (not that they needed the help). A few defected after Season 4, but he is still largely a disliked character. Even many people who don't like shipping weren't high on William for this reason, as they felt Ulrich and Yumi's relationship was already a convoluted Romantic Plot Tumor that William's inclusion only made even more complicated.
    • Also Sissi for some in the fandom, even though she was barely ever a threat to said Ship. To be fair to these fans, the writers DID give Ulrich and Sissi some pretty big damn kisses in "Frontier" and "Ultimatum", all the while cutting Yumi and Ulrich's kiss short in "Routine" and "Echoes".
    • Theo Gautier, a one-shot character who displayed interest toward Sissi then toward Yumi, is either used to get Sissi out of the way while averting this trope, or portrayed as a Jerkass and abusive boyfriend toward Yumi so she can run into Ulrich's arms (despite the fact he is even less of a threat than Sissi is).
  • Ear Worm:
    • The theme song.
    • The monster theme.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Clone William is very popular with the fans.
    • While more major than Clone William, Sissi and Jim are strictly secondary characters who ended up becoming much more popular with both the fans and the show's own staff as time went on.
  • Evil is Cool:
    • XANA is fondly remembered as one of the coolest villains in a kid show, helped by the fact that he remained an utterly nightmarish threat throughout the entire show that actually won when it counted.
    • William after he's Brainwashed and Crazy while acting as XANA's second in command.
  • Evil Is Sexy: William once he becomes The Dragon to XANA, gains an all black sensual spandex and the appearance of a Final Fantasy warrior.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple:
    • A surprisingly large amount of fans prefer Odd×Aelita to Jérémie×Aelita, even though Word of God shot it down.
    • Some fans prefer to put Sissi with Odd due to the occasional Ship Tease and to get her away from Ulrich.
  • Fanon: The name "Team Lyoko" was never used in canon in the actual show; the fans came up with it. Same was true for the name "Lyoko-Warriors" initially, but it became Ascended Fanon.
  • Foe Yay:
    • Odd and Sissi, increasingly moreso as the show goes on.
    • Also, XANA and Aelita. At one point in the second season, he sends a shapeshifting creature into the real world to separate the team by... kissing people. This leads to the creature kissing Aelita in order to convince her to leave with him. Oh, and it's also worth noting that XANA's main objective for season two involves downloading a special code from Aelita's memories, which will and does kill her. Oh, the creature that he uses is effectively a tentacle monster. Even after he succeeds in getting her memories, Seasons 3 and 4 show that she is still critical to XANA's plans. In Season 3, he brainwashes her four times with the Scyphozoa so that she'll delete the surface sectors for him, and in Season 4, he uses William to throw her into the digital sea, and some of his dialogue (particularly during Episode 85, where William says that it's just the two of them at last and that XANA will have her company for good) indicates that after Franz Hopper is dead, XANA intends to keep Aelita at his side.
    • Not to mention XANA and Jérémie. Two of his schemes involve using Yumi and Aelita, both who try to seduce Jérémie by either kissing him on the cheek or on the lips. However, just like XANA with Aelita, he has tried to kill Jérémie on a couple of occasions.
  • Growing the Beard: The first season was, for the most part, a Strictly Formula Monster of the Week-type show, with the exception of the two-part finale. Come season 2, the show became much more plot-focused (whilst still having some filler episodes), there were various changes to the status quo and there was a lot more Character Development.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • In "Code:Earth", Yumi is trying to get her parents to agree to letting Aelita stay at their house. When they ask what her parents do, Yumi makes up on the spot that they "work with computers". And who should have created the supercomputer other than Aelita's father, Franz Hopper!
    • When William finds out about Lyoko in "The Secret", Jérémie calms down Ulrich by saying they just make him forget with a Return to the past. William, not understanding what they are talking about, answers he never forgets anything. We later find out he indeed remembered this episode's events even after the Return to the Past, though only as a dream.
  • Hollywood Pudgy: In "Tip-Top Shape", Sissi is told by the nurse that she's 5 pounds overweight, but she's just as skinny as always. (The scale read 110.7 lb [50 kg]. If she was 5 pounds overweight she'd have to be 4'7" [137 cm], but she is a bit taller than Ulrich who is 5'1 [156 cm].) Lampshaded by Aelita.
  • Ho Yay: A wide variety of moments between Ulrich and Odd, and surprisingly Yumi and Sissi during many XANA attacks. Some of the more notable examples include:
    • "Triple Trouble" — After Jérémie tells Odd that he's developed a new power for him on Lyoko, Odd says, "You're the best, Einstein! If you were a girl, I'd propose to you immediately!"
    • "Replika" — Nicolas initially asks Aelita if she'd like to go on a "fantastic and breathtaking experience in the moonlight". She ends up pulling out, so instead Nicolas ends up spending the night with... Hervé.
    • "Music to Soothe the Savage Beast" — Yumi tells Aelita she looks beautiful and winks at her, prompting Aelita to smile and blush.
  • Idiot Plot: The show stresses the Masquerade, yet the gang has openly mentioned Lyoko and XANA within crowded areas talking louder than anyone else as well as in front of at least one person not privy to the secret — and somehow this generally doesn't expose them all. This has actually happened at least 20 times within the first two seasons alone. Mitigated, of course, by the Reset Button — but the point still stands, as they're way too much relying on it to cover their indiscretions. They also often pass it off as discussing some movie or video game.
  • Iron Woobie: Ulrich when it comes to his relationship with his father.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Sissi on several occasions, particularly during XANA attacks and especially after the prequel reveals that a stupid misunderstanding and Ulrich's hurt feelings contributed to Sissi being a Jerkass to begin with; otherwise, she's kind of nice.
  • Looks Like She Is Enjoying It: In the English dub, a lot of the grunts, yells, and cries of pain made by Yumi and Aelita. It crosses from mediocre acting to ludicrously bad, however, when expressions of horror at virtualisation errors sound like orgasms.
  • Lost in Medias Res: One thing that hurt the show's rep in season one. While it gives the show some mystique and encouraged some to keep watching, for others, they were confused.
  • Magnificent Bastard: XANA, big time. Despite being 1) A never seen character and 2) The only villain in the whole show, he succeed in both inverting Villain Decay, pulling out plans of many sorts and ending a season with The Bad Guy Wins twice.
  • Memetic Badass: Franz Hopper. According to the Lyoko Freak forums, any time Franz Hopper removes his glasses the world is split in half.
  • Memetic Loser: Aelita is this in the eyes of the fandom and newcomers for mostly being remembered as the useless Faux Action Girl who required rescue from her friends in every episode during Seasons 1 and 2. While she did Take a Level in Badass in the second half of the show, many viewers still remember her as the Damsel in Distress she was for the first half of the series.
  • Memetic Mutation: The characters' enormous foreheads are subject to many, many jokes.
  • Moe: All of the Lyoko warriors are considered Badass Adorable by fans.
  • Narm: By today's standards, some of Jérémie's loving interest in Aelita may come across as laughably weird instead of romantic.
  • Never Live It Down: Some fans won't ever forget Aelita's role as a Damsel in Distress who got endangered every episode. Even after she Took a Level in Badass, it's still brought up a lot.
  • The Problem with Licensed Games: The games based off this series either range from decent at best to a lesson in masochism at worse. The DS action game verges on Fake Difficulty thanks to nearly all the monsters operating under Instant Death Radius, the RPG that followed as decent, albeit slow and uneventful in gameplay, and the Wii game was alright, albeit extremely bias towards ranged characters over melee characters since melee characters deal pitiful damage by comparison.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap:
    • Starting around mid-season 1, Sissi and Jim got much more noble moments and even some awesome ones, and they became mostly very well-liked. Jim also started to become a bit more humorous as time went on, as seen in Season 2 when he started using his "I'd rather not talk about it" catchphrase.
    • Aelita was considered a major Damsel Scrappy for most viewers for half the series, but after she Took a Level in Badass and got a hefty amount of character development fans finally started rooting for her when she defended herself.
    • To a lesser extent, William was also rescued from the heap when he become The Dragon to XANA, since Evil is Cool.
  • Romantic Plot Tumor: Ulrich and Yumi's Unresolved Sexual Tension got ridiculous by Season 2, and was soon toned down because MoonScoop had received many complaints about it.
  • Ron the Death Eater: The treatment that Jérémie gets from a lot of Odd×Aelita supporters in fanfiction. Good luck finding Oddlita fanfiction that doesn't feature Jérémie as physically, verbally, emotionally, or sexually abusive towards Aelita.
  • The Scrappy: Whenever Ulrich's father is on-screen, a bit of happiness vanishes from the Code Lyoko universe.
  • Seasonal Rot: Season 3 is often considered this. Among other things, it was only half as long as other seasons, Yumi's Designated Victim status became exaggerated, the tone was Darker and Edgier than even season 2 due to XANA slowly succeeding in his plan to destroy Lyoko (and, by contrast, the comic relief became less funny, especially when it involved the usually-reliable Jim), and also the huge potential after the season 3 finale never came to fruition when season 4 arrived. Season 4, while a step up from Season 3, also gets flak for being too long with too much Padding and boring Filler episodes, and generally not reaching the heights Season 2 did.
  • Ship Mates: Most shippers that support Ulrich×Yumi also support Jérémie×Aelita, and vice versa. Those same shippers will generally ship Odd with either Sam (a one-shot girlfriend of his) or Sissi (a frequent subject of Ship Tease with him).
  • Spiritual Successor: Has anyone else gotten vibes of VR Troopers from this show? It's got teenagers who travel into a virtual realm and transform into warriors to battle a digitally-based overlord who desires world domination. Unlike VRT however, it's not a Toku show that suffered from Cut-and-Paste Translation. (Ironically, Noam Kaniel, who wrote and sang the theme song, did a lot of work for Saban Entertainment, producers of VRT, in the 80s and 90s.)
  • Squick: In the novel continuity, Odd falls for a girl named Eva. And Eva is possessed by XANA. Worse, they end up an Official Couple once she's un-possessed, completely ignoring that literally everything that built them as a couple and made Odd fall in love with Eva happened while XANA was possessing her.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks:
    • News of the new project ("Evolution") being live-action is already being met with fervent hatred in some places. Even fans who are willing to give the show a chance have expressed doubts about this change.
    • The novels have also been criticized for taking huge liberties on the source material, and also for reading like a typical fanfiction. (The unpopular William being written out to advance Ulrich/Yumi? Check. The same type of blonde female foreigner Mary Sue who joins the group and becomes a love interest for Odd that the show itself parodied? Check. XANA being revived, inexplicably woobified, and given a Heel–Face Turn? Check.)
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • Season 4 is seen as mostly a missed opportunity amongst the fanbase due to the plot getting shafted for Filler throughout a majority of the season when it could have been used to further the exploration into the digital sea or digging deeper into XANA's Lyoko replicas, with only a total of four being visited. The sudden, out-of-nowhere, series ending didn't help matters either.
    • Perhaps the largest case of this would be Project Carthage, an enigmatic military project that Franz Hopper desired to destroy, due to its ability to affect world-wide communication networks. Basically put, this project is the very reason the show's plot exists at all, and yet very little attention was ever given to it after Season 2, when any chances for it to be mentioned throughout the story are dropped for the most part. Not even the sequel series, Code Lyoko: Evolution directly mentions it. Only the novels have ever dealt with the subject, and their status as canon is hotly debated.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: Odd has often been mistaken for a female. Even more so in the French dub, due to his voice.
  • What an Idiot: The entire school staff during the episode "The Satellite", as detailed under "Adults Are Useless" on the main page. Seriously, they reach near Lethally Stupid levels during the episode.
    • What You'd Think: All the cellphones on Campus go off at the same time. Considering how crazy coincidental it is, you'd think the staff would check to see if there isn't something going haywire with their tower, right?
      • Instead: They apparently think all the kids just have that many people who call them on a regular basis, and thus confiscate all the kids phones. Not only is this dangerous even without X.A.N.A floating around, since the kids can't call for help in a dangerous situation, but...
      • Bonus Points for Added Stupidity: They try to deactivate every single tower in town. Not only would such an idea be shot down immediately in real life because of how idiotic it'd be, it's not unreasonable to believe the parents could sue the school at that point for child endangerment!
  • The Woobie:
    • Aelita. Big time. When the character ends up almost Driven to Suicide, you know it's bad.
    • Also, to an extent, William at the end of the show. Poor guy spent entire month as a Brainwashed and Crazy minion for a malevolent IA, fighting the very people he wanted to help (including the girl he is in love with), and when he attempts to redeem himself, the Lyoko-warriors, feeling still uncomfortable about the time they were fighting him, reject him.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/CodeLyoko