YMMV: Maria-sama ga Miteru

  • Anvilicious: All the lily ("yuri") and sapphire ("sapphic") references, including a Lampshade Hanging on them in the first episode.
  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: the finale of season two, sparkly-background-roses and all.
    • The second half of OVA episode 1 may qualify as well. It is a nice subversion of the usual My-Beloved-is-So-Flawed cliche, as Sachiko sees right through her cousins' attempts to denigrate Yumi and is not shy about her disgust.
  • Ear Worm: The cute and cheerful OP of the 4th season. You don't believe it? Listen for yourself. (Easily the cutest thing produced by the franchise since the Maria-sama ni wa Naisho! omake.)
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Sei, the original Rosa Gigantea, struck as one of the most popular characters at first for being the most notable lesbian of the show. In latest seasons, Noriko seems to have gained plenty of popularity. The White Rose Family can be considered the Ensemble Dark Horse Family as it is the most popular family in the fandom despite getting considerable less screen time than the red and even the yellow one,
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: The message of Mifuyu's story appears to be: "Accept that other people are more special than you."
    • The message of Sei's backstory seems to be: "Societal obligations will sometimes keep you from someone you love. Learn to accept it."
      • And both are messages that, while regrettable, are still prevalent in Japanese cultural mores.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Touko
  • Les Yay: Practically the entire female cast.
  • Memetic Mutation: This series is responsible for the word "Gokigenyo" being known among anime fans.
    • The first scene, in which Sachiko fixes Yumi's scarf, is often referenced and parodied, especially when hinting at romantic involvement between girls.
  • Narm: In one episode, Yumi and Sachiko run at each other to hug in a emotional moment... while Yumi is wearing a panda suit.
  • Periphery Demographic: Nominally shoujo, but the male viewership is large enough that the first season was test run at Otaku O'Clock.
  • The Scrappy:
    • Touko seems to attract a lot of hate from the fandom
    • Fans also tend to be exasperated by Yoshino's numerous bitchy outbursts toward Rei. Sure, they usually make up sweetly, but fans feel that meek and mild Rei really doesn't deserve all the bile Yoshino piles upon her.
  • Wangst: Largely averted, although Touko's self-torture about being adopted comes dangerously close at times.
  • The Woobie: Oh, Sei.
    • Also Touko, whose Wangst about being adopted turns her into either The Scrappy or Yumi's new Official Couple.
    • Or Kanako, who has a troubled past and isn't shown to have many friends. And who also seemed to be a serious candidate for becoming Yumi's soer, only to get jilted.
  • What an Idiot: Shouko goes to the tea party held by Yumi and Yoshino, hoping to get noticed and get into the Yamayurikai... but instead of focusing on one girl and woo her, she says either one of them is fine, thus spoiling her chance to be liked.