YMMV: The Amazing World of Gumball

  • Acceptable Targets:
    • Twice this show has jokes about art students:
      • In "The Virus," Teri (the paper cutout bear) is aghast that Gumball may not have showered in three months. Gumball replies, "Of course I've showered. I'm not an art student."
      • In "The Fraud," when Principal Brown lectures Gumball and Darwin on coming into school wearing nothing but Body Paint, he says, "Surely, you can't walk around looking like you fell asleep at an art student's party."
    • "The Safety" was one entire burn against censorship and Moral Guardians, not just in the United Kingdom (since the UK does edit for violence, offensive language, and imitable behavior in their children- and family-friendly DVD releasesnote ), but also in the United States (especially since three episodes of The Amazing World of Gumball were censored in America: "The Skull"note , "The Storm"note , and "The Saint"note ) and other countries (particularly in the Middle East, East Asia, and Australia) that have Cartoon Network channels that air The Amazing World of Gumball and edit out content considered objectionable by the censors in those countriesnote .
      • "The Safety" feels like a comic deconstruction of the infamous Tiny Toon Adventures episode "Washingtoon," which had a similar premise of an overzealous Moral Guardian making the world bland and lifeless in the name of safety, only "Washingtoon" focused on the censorship of animated TV shows while "The Safety" had the censorship of animated TV shows as a brief plot point.
  • And You Thought It Would Fail: Ben Bocquelet didn't think that the show would be as successful as it is (at best, he thought it'd get commended for its Medium Blending while everything else would be perceived as So Okay, It's Average). But the show has gone on to be nominated and win several awards (most in its native UK) and the show in America is well-liked.
  • Awesome Music: Mr. Robinson's performance at the end of "The Debt".
    • "She's a lady, a fine lady!"
    • "You gotta think big, think smart!"
    • "Warrior, Be The Warrior!"
    • "We enjoy it while we can, we enjoy it while we're kids! We enjoy it while there's still time to make the most of it!"
    • The musical sung by the background characters in "The Extras". Special mention goes to the Green Bear's awesome voice.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: In "The Goons", Larry accidentally proposes to Richard (he was talking to his girlfriend when Richard picked him up in a 'dumb race'). Richard replies, "This is so sudden! I'm not saying no, I'm not saying no!" followed by a montage of Richard wandering around the park in thought.
  • Bizarro Episode: Though the entire series can count, there have been episodes that were weird, even by their standards:
    • "The Sweaters," a Karate Kid parody featuring human cartoon characters (modeled after the ones from late 1970s-mid-1980s cartoons, in terms of how stiff and stylized they are) that not even Gumball and Darwin want to get involved with.
    • "The World," an entire episode devoted to showing that everything in Elmore (and possibly the universe) really does come to life in the form of multiple short sketches. It's about as weird as it sounds. "The Extras" is similar, except it focuses on the background, one-shot, and very minor characters that appear as extras.
    • "The Joy": A survival/found footage/zombie apocalypse horror film parody with Miss Simian as a main character and shot mostly through her camcorder.
    • "The Countdown" starts as an ordinary Race Against the Clock episode, but halfway through the episode, Gumball accidentally breaks the clock on-screen, causing time to stop. From there, we get time travel (backwards and forwards) and alternate realities that would make Doctor Who look normal.
  • Broken Base: As of the episode "The Shell," Penny's true form without her shell. Some fans love her design and the idea of her being a shape shifter while others hate the fact that she is not a deer. The latter goes as far as to pretend that the episode never happened.
    • As of now, the fans are already warming up to Penny's true form.
    • Is the current season (season three) the best season of the series yet note , or is it overrated and showing signs of Seasonal Rot? note 
  • Ear Worm: The theme song is pretty catchy, including the wonky music being played in the credits.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Even before her debut in "The Ghost", Carrie has always had quite a large fanbase.
    • Rachel, who only had one major role and is likely not appearing in another afterwards, has gained quite a bit of fan art and fan fiction; usually relating to her relationship with Darwin.
    • Considering the rarity of her appearances, Jamie has a small, but very impassioned fan base that is currently growing.
    • Tina's fanbase is about as big as her father.
  • Fanon: Many fan-artists depict Penny as a deer when not in her shell, which is why the revelation that Penny is a shapeshifting spirit in "The Shell" shocked and/or made them mad.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple:
  • Japan Loves Gumball: Gumball is currently one of the more popular shows on Cartoon Network Japan. Given Japan's fondness for unusual imagery and its Animesque appearance, it's really not too surprising.
  • Growing the Beard: Season 2 saw a massive improvement for the show with its Art Shift (though some fans do consider season one's animation and art to be better) and the stories became more structured and coherent. Season 3 made the show even better. Removing Gumballs jerkass tendencies from Season 2/making him smarter and nicer than in Season 1, making the animation smoother with new moving backgrounds thanks to a new animation studio, Gumball and Darwin actually act more like real kids, and finally achieving the perfect balance of comedy drama and action. Its come a long way since Season 1.
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Tina certainly counts as one after "The Quest."
    • Carrie after "The Ghost."
    • Bobert. All he wants is to have emotions and be human. After finding said emotions, he took Gumball's life. Rather than try to teach him right from wrong, Gumball simply decides to "Reboot" him, deleting his memories and emotions.
    • William (the eyeball with wings) can't physically speak, but he hasn't realized this until after he attacked Gumball and Darwin for ignoring him.
    • If you think about it, Nicole can be this. She's the breadwinner of the family and due to her husband's irresponsible tendencies (and the fact that him getting a job will cause the universe to collapse), she has to do the housework as well, which is why she's very stressed and sometimes unstable which she sometimes takes out on her own family.
    • Surprisingly, Granny Jojo is this. In "The Man", it's revealed that his Richard's father left her and him to "buy milk" 42 years ago and never came back. Once you think about this, this also applied to Richard due to how he's raised into what he is today as "The Authority" showed.
    • As of "The Nobody", Rob the cyclops. Like Molly, he was Ret Goned to the Void, but unlike her, he wasn't rescued. Instead, he had to grab onto Janice and the resulting tear through the Void horribly disfigured him and gave him amnesia. With nowhere to go and no idea who he really is, he hid out in the Watterson's secret basement (which they had no idea they had) until they start catching onto the fact that their stuff is going missing, which is when Gumball and Darwin discover him. After trying to figure out what kind of personality Rob could adapt, but unable to think of any "good" ones, they bring up the possibility of him adapting a "bad" one. This brings back his memories, and he reveals his deep-seated hatred for them and decides to become their mortal enemy.
  • Narm Charm: Towards the end of "The Quest" episode Tina Rex apologizes for not giving Anais' doll back and even though she was going to she couldn't because the doll helped her get to sleep. The Puppy-Dog Eyes afterwards doesn't help.
  • Nausea Fuel:
    • In "The Knights", Gumball tries to get Penny's father to like him by cleaning the sweat from under his arms while he is jogging, and after he tells him to quit, Gumball then washes his mouth with the same rag. Ew.
    • The musical number on "The Burden" is both this and Nightmare Fuel due to its use of gross up close ups, jumpscares, and Hell Is That Noise.
  • Suspiciously Similar Song:
    • In "The Refund", Gumball and Darwin sing a song that sounds a lot like "We Are the World".
    • In "The Kiss", the crime fighting police drama Granny JoJo is watching has a similar theme song from CSI: Miami
    • Richard's song in "The Hero" has some similarity with the Malvina Reynolds song "Turn Around"; aside from the fact of the subject being both about seeing their child grow up, there's also how they sang the words "my little one".
    • A blatant soundalike of Herbie Hancock's "Rockit" plays over the senior citizen dance sequence in "The Extras", right down to the record scratch breaks.
  • Toy Ship: Gumball and Penny.
  • Ugly Cute:
    • Kenneth (the blob monster from "The Microwave"). Anais even mentions this trope by name when describing him.
      "Well, I guess you're kinda ugly-cute."
    • Richard, Baby!Gumball and some characters can be this.
  • Uncanny Valley:
    • Gumball's face after plastic surgery in "The Photo" is his attempt to amalgamate a bunch of perfect features, giving him a face that is more human-looking in the worse way possible. From the same episode, Alan's face in photos—that of a realistic man's face on a cartoony balloon body.
    • The eponymous butterfly from "The Butterfly" is another photographic human face on a cartoon animal/creature's body—and this time the face moves.
    • At one point in "The Safety", Darwin and several other students make this horrified face that looks...rather unnerving to say the least.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: Quite a few female characters lack any Tertiary Sexual Characteristics, making it very hard to know what gender they are.
    • What makes it even more confusing is that some of the male characters have feminine eyelashes, such as Darwin and Alan.
    • The most prominent male example of this is the apparently male Leslie. To add to the confusion, Leslie's in Masami's treehouse with the girls in "The Pressure". Then again, most plants have both male and female reproductive organs.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: The combined animation styles are very fun to look at.
    • Special mention for the Street Fighter parody in 'The Words'
    • Another to any time that Penny changes forms in "The Shell".
    • The different animation in the rap sequence of "The Kids".
    • The POV shots in "The Law". They're so chaotic, awesome and somewhat realistic.
    • The chase scene in "The Password" is basically the same as the one from "The Ape" but with more insane cinematic qualities,
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: Like most of Cartoon Network's oeuvre (past and present), this show has a lot of humor/moments that would be more at home on an [adult swim] show, but thanks to Cartoon Network's censors being permissive at best and incompetent at worst, appears on a TV-Y7-FV shownote . However, this show balances its kid humor with adult humor, making it play out like a Lighter and Softer take on The Simpsons or Regular Show — at least it did in season one. From season two to now, the surreal humor, Parental Bonuses, and Comedic Sociopathy / Black Comedy became more prominent, but it always tried to remain family-friendly for the most part. Compare with Adventure Time, which started out being relatively kid-friendly and abandoned it when it became a hit with its Periphery Demographic of older viewers, Steven Universe which, despite its TV-PG rating on American TV and moments of violence, romance, and/or tearjerking drama, is relatively kid-friendly, or Regular Show, whose staff members freely admit that it's a kids' show In Name Only because the writers love the challenge of getting away with dubious content on a "kids' show."
  • What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs?: The entire show can get into some majorly trippy moments, but special mention goes to the opening that only aired once in America and has since been truncatednote . It should be noted that the reason why the show looks the way it does isn't because of drugs. It's because Ben Bocquelet wanted to do a show with different cartoon character styles and was inspired by European modern art, graphic disunity, and when he took the mascots he created (made from different animation styles: stop-motion, 2D, Animesque, 3D, claymation, live-action, etc) for advertisements and Photoshopped them on a realistic photograph of a school.
  • The Woobie: Gumball and Darwin at times.
    • Penny was definitely this in "The Shell".
    • Larry the rock-head clerk, as seen in the episodes "The Finale" (who says he has to take multiple jobs to pay off the damages done by the Wattersons) and "The Pizza" (who is so sick of getting stiffed out of a tip that he quits, which brings about the end of civilization).