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YMMV: Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea
  • Accidental Innuendo: "I'd let a fish lick me if it'd get me outta this wheelchair"
  • Angst? What Angst?: Every single character seems remarkably nonchalant about a catastrophic flood.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: Ponyo's stare-off with the baby. It's random.
  • Fridge Brilliance: Ponyo was told by her father that she can't work magic and stay human. Remember that when she casts spells, she takes on that weird appearance that looks like a tadpole or a chicken. Or a vaguely anthropomorphic Tiktaalik.
  • Ear Worm: The theme song. Partially due to the presence of certain siblings of certain controversial Disney personalities. But even if you hate the song, it's undeniably catchy... which makes it much more of an Ear Worm if you do hate it.
    • Painful Rhyme: "She's a little fish from the deep blue sea" / "She's a little girl with a round tum-MY."
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Fujimoto. Despite (or even because of) the fact that he's a henpecked, crotchety, and overprotective father, two-thirds of the small but growing fanwork base involves him.
    • You could also say that it's because he's an adorable Cloudcuckoolander and overprotective but loving father.
    • Or that he looks and dresses like a magical Steam Punk Tim Burton character.
    • Or that he looks like a redheaded cross between David Bowie and Neil Gaiman.
    • Or because he has a mostly untouched backstory as a former human who became an undying sorcerer of the sea.
    • Or because he's funny as hell.
    • Or just that he can be creepy and adorkable at the same time (at least in the English dub, since some of it has to do with his voice). For instance: "Respect your father!" (said menacingly, the creeper part) -> essentially a pratfall (dorky) -> "Girls, I'm trying to save your sister!" (said pleadingly/worriedly, kinda cute as a protective dad thing).
    • Or because he's voiced by Liam Neeson in the English dub
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: This anime film by Hayao Miyazaki based loosely on Hans Christian Andersen's Tear Jerker Fairy Tale "The Little Mermaid" was apparently popular in Denmark enough due to the fact that Denmark simply gave it it's own Official Website.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: The 2011 8.9 earthquake had the ocean sweeping over elevated roads in the same fashion as the film. Nobody dying, and everyone shrugging it off as a 2.0 earthquake? ....yeeeeeeeeeaah.... not really.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Matt Damon & Tina Fey's characters are a married couple, although are in separate distance from each other. In the new season of 30 Rock, Tina Fey & Matt Damon play characters who are dating each other.
    • Liam Neeson playing a loving, extremely protective father in this movie...then playing an extremely violent version of the same archetype in Taken.
  • Hot Dad: Fujimoto, Glam-rock star of the sea. In the Finnish dub, he is voiced by Ismo Alanko, who is literally a rock star (by Finnish standards).
  • Memetic Mutation: "Respect your father!"
    • "Teeth!"
    • "HAM!"
  • Most Annoying Sound: Both Kumiko and The Baby have an annoying cry when they're upset.
  • Narm: Ponyo assaulting The Baby's face, The Baby's voice, talking about making milk for The Baby...
  • Nightmare Fuel: Those dark-water-blob-things Fujimoto sends to get Ponyo back from Sosuke. They practically submerge him, and those EYES...
    • Also, when the sea piled up...
    • Ponyo's sudden shifts from human to half goldfish form sometimes. Especially in the case where she tries to cheer up a baby by getting a little too up close and personal.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song: Of "Ride of the Valkyries", when Ponyo rides the tsunami to the surface. Possibly a Shout-Out, because her real name is Brunhilde.
  • Tastes Like Diabetes:
    • The theme song. The English version of the song segues into a rock 'n roll remix and is consequently less cute.
    • Pretty much the entire movie. The ending shot will have you diving for your insulin.
  • Tear Jerker: Well, not the movie itself, but the reason behind the movie. See Reality Subtext.
  • Uncanny Valley: Granmanmare evokes this due to her design being slightly more realistic than the traditionally Miyazaki-esque characters that surround her.
    • Also, Ponyo's inbetween human-and-fish form.
  • Values Dissonance: Leaving five-year-old children alone and unsupervised (in the middle of a typhoon, no less!) could be considered criminal neglect in some jurisdictions. Still, it can be considered as Lisa choosing the lesser of two evils — either bring them with her where they'd all easily be swept away by a particularly bad wave, or let them stay on high ground in the comparatively safe house.
    • Why isn't staying at home an option? Did the old people at the retirement home at least give her a light lecture? They've lived a full life, but if anything happens to Lisa, or her husband at sea during the typhoon, the two kids wouldn't last long.
    • The reason why she left them to go to the retirement home may have been the movie's way of reflecting the Japanese value that the young should take care of the elderly, no matter the circumstances. A strong case of Value Dissonance, especially since in Western culture it's viewed as the other way around.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Symbolic?: A little girl who happens to be the daughter of a deity, running across the water.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion:
    • Ponyo, when we first see her. Look at the movie poster.
    • Fujimoto. Some viewers weren't sure of his gender until he spoke his first lines.

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