YMMV: Gunnerkrigg Court

  • Arc Fatigue: Chapter 40 drew just as many "we get it already, she's OLD" comments from the reader base as "oh wow, shiny". They mostly died down post-flashback sequence, though.
  • Base Breaker: Depending on who you ask, Anthony Carver is either a very misunderstood socially awkward but actually caring person, or the worst, coldest and most selfish father there is out there.
    • Says a lot about the character that he can break the base without having made an actual appearance to date (not counting flashbacks).
  • Creator Worship: Reached it's most visible top when Tom opened a Tumblr account for GKC artwork and drawings he made. The first post was full of worshipping from other Tumblr users.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Zimmy and Gamma, Red and Blue are all well liked characters expect forums to explode in squees anytime they show up.
    • The laser robot cows.
    • Whatever Jones's deal is, the fandom loves her.
    • Jack was very popular with fans until his Kick the Dog moment. And now that it's been revealed that it wasn't really him doing the kicking, he's starting to regain said popularity. And judging from a lot of fan reactions, some fans were pretty much cheering Jack on after glibly and handily he told off Annie for trying to set him up just to shoot him down.
    • Parley.
    • Basil. Only appeared in the second chapter, and had a cameo in Chapter 32.
    • For all of his terribleness, Boxbot has a noticeable following. He even got an entry in the GKC wiki before Tom himself!
    • Shadow and Robot are pretty popular for being Those Two Guys and more recently being an apparently Straight Gay couple.
    • Paz was already a pretty popular character but no more than Kat and Annies other classmates. Catalyst shot her popularity through the roof for being Kat's Closet Key.
    • Ironically despite being a new character and in direct opposition of a popular ship, Jenny the teenage witch, has become very popular.
  • Epileptic Trees: Half the reason for posting on the forum. So common that Tom occasionally calls them out in The Rant.
    Tom: In my mind I am picturing a dart board with every available space riddled with darts.

    Tom: Those guys in panel 4 are not Aly, and they are not Annie's dad in disguise, nor are they the girl from the photo, or transgendred clones of Annie's mom sent back in time to act as spies.
  • Genius Bonus: The name of one of the faeries in City Face #4 is named Mustard Seed. One of fairy queen Titania's servants is also named Mustardseed. Coincidence?
    • These details are everywhere in this comic. Apart from the myriad alchemical symbols and Meaningful Names around the story, several times there have been cameos of mythological characters who briefly drop in, but are never formally introduced. The fanbase has invariably managed to discover their identities from tiny hints of their appearance and behaviour.
  • Growing the Beard: Somewhere around Chapter 24 the quality of the dialogue and story get much better.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Any mention of just how much Annie resembles her mother seems a bit more tragic given The Reveal in Chapter 31.
    • This adorable page- has been becoming aggressively harsher with the increasingly alarming robot cult that's sprung up as a result of Robot's preaching through the chapters since, most recently resulting in Robot and the Seraphs being responsible for the terror and violence in The Torn Sea, and declaring it 'worth it'.
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Zimmy's life sucks. She is an obnoxious jerk nevertheless.
    • Ysengrin.
  • Les Yay: Oh the volumes and volumes of Les Yay between Annie and Kat.
    • Taken Up to Eleven in the Year 9 chapters thus far, which have had Kat acting like a scorned lover, getting concerned about a potential boyfriend for Annie, and being Mistaken for Gay by Paz and Renard both.
    • Chapter 38 takes it even further by not just teasing Kat and Annie a lot (thats Annies hand at the top) but also Zimmy and Gamma.
    • Taken to new heights in Catalyst when Paz reveals that she was the one that sent the love letter to Kat, having apparently changed her mind since Chapter 34. See here. And in the same chapter we find out Kat has changed her mind too as well.
    • Then there's this page of "Annie in the Forest" side story.
    • Jenny's constant use of the British euphemism "My love" when refering to Annie.
    • Ho Yay: And going in the other direction, Shadow and Robot end up being a Beta Couple by Chapter 41.
  • Manipulative Bastard / Magnificent Bastard: Coyote. He never loses control of the situation no matter what it is, and he's definitely been manipulating Ysengrin, Reynardine, and Antimony for quite some time, which could easily be a sign of a hidden agenda. His seeming dislike of the Court and the fact that he's a Trickster God don't help his case.
  • Mary Sue: From Tom's twitter:
    "Almost every character I've drawn in my comic has been labeled as my stand-in, mary sue, sexual fetish, dream wish fulfillment. It gets old."
  • Memetic Mutation:
  • Moral Event Horizon: Diego (and the rest of the Court) crossed it in Chapter 25.
    • Some felt that Jack crossed the line somewhere in Ch 27. Not Himself applies, however. In fact it may be more accurate to say the Whitelegs possessing him was the one who crossed the line.
    • The revelation that Coyote has been inflicting Laser-Guided Amnesia on Ysengrin for an unspecified amount of time can be considered this. And if this wasn't enough, the revelation that he also convinced Reynardine to possess Daniel in his bid to court Surma despite his (wholly accurate) concerns that this might kill Daniel, leading to the chain of events that would leave Reynardine a prisoner of the Court thoroughly confirms that Coyote is not anyone's friend.
  • Never Live It Down: There are readers who will never seem to be able to live down not recognizing Eglamore when he showed up in Chapter 17. Now, almost every time he shows up, Tom feels the need to specifically explain who he is.
  • Nobody Thinks It Will Work: The feeling a lot of Fans have about Kat and Paz's relationship is that it's cute, but it won't last.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Hetty only appears in one chapter, but she makes quite an impression.
  • Ship-to-Ship Combat: Some of the debates between Kat/Annie and Annie/Jack shippers have gotten pretty nasty, never mind that only very opaque hints have been given for either possibility in the comic itself, and romantic relationships have never been a significant focus of the story.
    • Kat/Paz vs. Kat/Annie is in full swing now and getting pretty vicious.
  • Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped:
    • The two main anvils of both parts of Spring Heeled (chapters 27 and 28) is that you shouldn't take all the problems for yourself, and that you shouldn't distrust adults just because one of them did something bad to you. Annie spends the entirety of both episodes dealing with Jack's possession by the etheric spider, without telling anyone about the fact. Once Jack activates the Power Station, traps Reynardine with a device built by the Donlans and escapes, Jones makes her appearance. Once they're all back in the Court, she lets Annie deal with Jack's situation, only for Jones to give Annie a lesson based on this anvil, after all is said and done:
    Jones: If you knew about Jack's condition, you should have told someone about it. I don't want you to lose your initiative, Antimony, but you should know that you don't have to deal with everything by yourself.
    • Also, near the end of Chapter 28: Spring Heeled: part II, there's this bonus anvil about labeling others based on ignorance, fear and misunderstanding.
    Jones: Zimmy keeps people at arm's length because she knows she is a danger to those around her. She can hardly be blamed for what she is.
    Reynardine: A demon is what she is.
    Jones: A label commonly applied to what is feared and misunderstood. Don't forget that you are known as "the demon Renard" to many people.
    • Chapter 29: A Bad Start. Kat (still affected by the events of Chapter 25: Sky Watcher And The Angel) rescues a pigeon. She then brings it to Paz, where she and another Robot do some tests on him. Later, they enter into a room with many cells holding abandoned mice, and Kat breaks herself in tears. Cue this anvil dropped in dialogue form over pages 753 and 754:
    Kat: Paz, how can you work in a place like this!? Knowing what they do!
    Paz: They are not all used for testing! And many of the tests are non-invasive! They study behaviour and learning patterns...
    Kat: This doesn't make it better! This place... the whole Court... they just do what's best for themselves. They don't care what happens to anyone else.
    Paz: Kat, I know is not perfect. I wish for a day we didn't need to keep these mice... but until then, I try to make life comfortable for them. And there are very strict rules and limitations. Is all very tightly self-regulated.
    Kat: Self-regulated?! That just means they can do what they want!
    Paz: No! You see, to do that, they would have to get through me first. The Court isn't a big monster that does as it pleases. Es a collection of people, working to do what they think is right. And, over time, other people see what is wrong, what mistakes were made, and work hard to fix them. I cry too when I find this place. But I ask to help. To change and make things better.
    Kat: What's the use!? The entire process is flawed. You can't just make it better.
    Paz: ¿Y el pichón? That tiny, little, ugly thing? Why did you bring it here? You could have left it to die. Maybe even kill it yourself to get rid of the problem. Is just a pigeon. Nobody would know, or care.
    Kat: Whaaa?! I-I could never do that!
    Paz: Thas right! And with your help, and bobby and me, he will grow up to be beautiful.
    • At the end of Chapter 30: The Coward Heart, Parley learnt two lessons: don't be shy to admit your own feelings to the ones you love, and acting in a rude way achieves nothing.
    • Chapter 38:
    Zimmy: You can't always run from what scares ya.
    • A major character enters a same-gender relationship and much of chapter 45 is devoted to a pep talk about embracing her orientation when her friend appears to react poorly to the news. Some queer fans didn't like that her sexuality was being treated as an Issue in a fantastical world where love between a robot and a shadow is handled casually, and would have preferred for such a relationship to be treated as normal and unremarkable; but others liked that the comic addressed concerns that the character would almost certainly have in real life and appreciated the message sent to Gunnerkrigg's young adult fanbase.
  • Tastes Like Diabetes: See the Crowning Moment of Heartwarming page. The same scenes that make some readers go "awwww" make others go "ewwww."
  • Tear Jerker: Has its own page.
  • Teasing Creator: He provides the page quote.
  • Ugly Cute: Zimmy with her "many, many fine sharp fangs", gunk-covered red eyes and so on, can be adorable to an absurd degree. Tom even made a wallpaper with Zimmy and a male avatar for him self in the same style.
    • She's especially adorable here and here.
    • Mind you, this only counts for her with the dark matter in her eyes. Zimmy with her normal red eyes is not Ugly Cute, it is just Cute.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: Shell from this page is so androgynous that some readers only noticed she was female from the (very) slight curves of her body and from the female cut (right lapel over left) of her suit.
  • The Woobie:
    • Jeanne. First she was separated from her lover, then she was imprisoned in some manner in the Court, then her first bit of hope was crushed by seeing her lover die, and, when the story begins, she's trapped in an afterlife of nothing but stewing in her own rage and despair.
    • In light of the events near the end of Chapter 34, Kat.
    • Jones, in light of Chapter 40. She's as old as the Earth itself and remembers nothing before that. She considers herself neither dead nor alive. She's spent billions of years either swallowed by magma, encased in rock, and then forced to watch as everything and everyone around her dies, and never being allowed to stay in one place too long until she found the Court. And to top that, even she has no idea why she is like that.
    • Jerkass Woobie: Before he arranged for Jeanne to die, Diego just wanted the same thing most of us want in life: to be loved. Instead, when he gained the courage to tell Jeanne how he felt, she flipped out, screamed that she hated him, told him he was horrible, smashed all of his robots while he begged her not to, and reduced him to a sobbing wreck. Rather than just, you know, telling him she wasn't interested. It was emotionally agonizing for him, and it isn't hard to understand why he would hate her afterwards, even if he did take things too far. Diego went his way to insult Jeanne's true love and belittle everything she cares about, though, basically saying that she should give everything up for him. Her reaction is not that difficult to understand, especially since it didn't seem like the first time something like that had happened between the two.
    • Ysengrin, especially in light of the events in Chapter 39.
    • Adam, the young boy who was Hetty's owner before she was destroyed in chapter 43. Adam's sister was Hetty's previous owner, and she secretly dictated that if anything happened to her, Adam would become Hetty's new owner. With the blatant implications that Hetty killed Adam's sister in order to free herself, Hetty did everything she could to avenge herself on her "terrible new master." This included all sorts of twisted pranks and torture, including putting fiberglass in Adam's bedsheets, with future plans of poisoning him with arsenic and doing anything else she could before finally killing him. And for all his trouble, Adam had no idea Hetty even existed. He had no idea why any of these things were happening to him, but he did notice that his bad luck began a little bit after his sister died. One has to really hope things got better for this kid after 43 ended.