- Contested Sequel: The movie wasn't nearly as well-received as the Thornberries movie or the previous two Rugrats films.
- Crowning Music of Awesome: The Big Bad Cat's an Act
- Harsher in Hindsight: This film boasted a brand-new feature animation logo for Klasky-Csupo. It was the only time it would be used.note
- Memetic Badass: Nigel Thornberry is an in-universe example, to the babies.
- Most Annoying Sound: Bruce Willis doing the much-hyped voiced Spike, mostly because he never shuts up!
- SequelItis: This movie was a box-office disappointment and also partially responsible for the end of Klasky-Csupo.
- So Okay, It's Average/Vindicated by History: Opinions of the film, which was once ripe for Snark Bait, have softened over the years, mostly from nostalgic fans of Klasky-Csupo who feel that, while the film isn't great, there's enough to at least please the fans, and can be seen as a decent sendoff to the studio's partnership with Nickelodeon.
- Tear Jerker:
Eliza: Spike, no! The waves are too big!
- The scene in which Nigel sings to the babies as they're trapped underwater, choosing to Face Death with Dignity and keep their spirits up to the best of his ability, being certain they wouldn't make it.
- Spike rushing to retrieve the raft so they can patch the Comvee's pontoon with it and save "his" babies, despite Eliza telling him that it's too dangerous.
Spike: Don't worry Eliza! I've paddled my way to more tennis balls than I can count! (gets hit by a wave) I-If I could count...
Eliza: But I'm afraid you won't make it!
Spike: Sure I will! And if I don't, they won't say old Down Spike didn't try his best!
- WTH, Casting Agency?: The only reasonable thing that can be said of Bruce Willis voicing Spike.