YMMV / Summer Glau

  • The Cast Showoff: Expect her to do a few ballet steps in any show she is in.
  • Dawson Casting: Summer has frequently been cast as characters who are either teenagers or supposed to be teenagers. She is in her thirties, but can pull off the teenage appearance with almost unnerving ease.
  • Dyeing for Your Art:
    I have a scar on my face from when I was shooting. I was at a shooting range and a shell flew back and burned my face, so [director] David Nutter let it show all through the pilot [of Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles], and if you watch you can see it all through the episode. I thought that was great because she is supposed to be human[-like]. — from IF Magazine.
  • Les Yay: In practically every show she's in, Summer's characters have some of this with other prominent female characters, if there's one around.
  • Mean Character, Nice Actor: Despite playing killer robots, psychopaths, and other assorted crazy characters, she is frequently described as one of the nicest people in Hollywood.
  • Memetic Badass: Both Summer herself and her characters tend to have this reputation, if xkcd's "River Tam Beats Up Everyone" bit is any indication. It helps that she's a skilled martial artist in real life.
  • Memetic Mutation: The 'Summer Glau Curse'; the idea that any show she appears on will be cancelled. Shows with multiple seasons seem to be an exception.
  • Moe: She somehow makes the piercing gaze of a killer robot from the future come across as adorable.
  • Old Shame: Her first acting roles were in some commercials from the late 90s/early 00s. However, these commercials were for specific affiliates in Texas and California, promoting local businesses, thus it's very hard for anyone to find copies of these commercials. Summer has said herself, "This is a good thing."
  • One of Us: Summer is a big fan of science-fiction movies, and is also a DC Comics fan.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Before she met Joss Whedon, she was almost a Power Ranger, saying she was the second choice for Power Rangers Wild Force.note 
    • She also tried out for the role of Kitty Pryde in X-Men: The Last Stand. For her audition, she recited a scene Whedon wrote for Kitty during his run on Astonishing X-Men.
  • The Woobie: Summer is good at playing these, with her most famous of such roles being River.
    • Could also be considered one in real life at least where her career is concerned. The last four shows that she's been on have all been cancelled after one or two seasons.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/SummerGlau