* AdaptationDisplacement: In some circles, this movie is better remembered than the trading card series that inspired it.
* AudienceAlienatingPremise: A family film about ungodly ugly kids doing nothing but insulting and hurting other people. 'Nuff said.
* BigLippedAlligatorMoment:
** The portraits with the moving eyes at the beginning? It's never explained, beyond a vague implication that Manzini is fond of collecting magical items.
** The reference of the Garbage Pail Kids being aliens through the implications of the trash spaceship.
** The part where the Kids [[ThatRemindsMeOfASong break out in song]], since there are no other musical numbers; moreover the sequence comes out of nowhere in the middle of another scene.
* BileFascination: Given its reputation, probably the only reason most have for checking it out at all.
* DarknessInducedAudienceApathy: The absolutely vile nature of just about all the characters including the eponymous children and its dark, gritty, uninviting settings certainly lend themselves to this bigtime.
* DesignatedHero:
** The Garbage Pail Kids prove themselves to make Juice and his gang of bullies look like saints in comparison -- they steal things, vandalize property, harass others (to the point of ''starting fights'') and even insult the two people who look after them.
** Captain Manzini is intended to be the BigGood, but the most heroic thing he does is spring the Garbage Pail Kids from prison… so that he can imprison them again inside a trash can!
* FridgeHorror: If they come from ''space'', does it mean there's a ''whole planet'' of those atrocities?!? If so, it's all the reason we need to build a functional [[Franchise/StarWars Death Star]].
* JerkassWoobie: Tangerine strings Dodger and the GPK to make herself look good as a fashion designer, and even ends up betraying them. At the same time though, one could feel sorry for her -- it's implied that Juice is abusive; he does rough her up at times.
* {{Narm}}: [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8sN4zxXLPdQ Blythe's incredibly forced laugh.]]
* NauseaFuel: Given how disgusting the source material was, this isn't surprising.
* NightmareFuel:
** The Garbage Pail Kids themselves. They probably didn't intend to make them ''this'' horrific-looking, but they are.
** The whole concept of the State Home For The Ugly, since it's a place where people considered "ugly" or otherwise abnormal are imprisoned and executed.
* {{Padding}}: There are several long, dragged-out scenes of the Kids just interacting with each other. Typically, scenes like this are used for character development or exposition, but here [[TalkingHeads a lot of the dialogue scenes]] contribute very little to the film's story. Particularly of note is a three-minute sequence of the Kids just playing a prank on a random man by [[JerkAss redirecting a sewer pipe into his hot tub]].
* RootingForTheEmpire: As… idiotic as the idea of the State Home for the Ugly is, the fact that they want to apparently outright murder the obnoxious protagonists actually makes some people want to root for them merely for that reason alone. The "kids" ''belong'' in that place, no question about it.
* SnarkBait: The only reason most people who are well-informed about this movie might want to watch it.
* SpecialEffectsFailure:
** The ship at the beginning of the film is a model that ''clearly'' looks like a "not-quite finished" model in front of a half-assed painting of Earth.
** The Garbage Pail Kids themselves; already too creepy and ugly for words, it's painfully obvious that they're all just crudely made rubber suits, with poorly functioning mouths and lifeless eyes to boot.
** In one scene, Tangerine picks up Dodger to go to the fashion show. As they start a conversation it is clearly daytime when they leave, and in the next shot it is nighttime.
* {{Squick}}:
** Tangerine and Dodger hitting on each other. She is in her twenties (or, at least, [[DawsonCasting looks so]]) and he is almost fifteen but looks quite a bit younger. Shockingly, Tangerine's actor was then only a year older than Dodger's, which somewhat lessens the blow.
** The Kids themselves who fart, piss on and threaten people every other minute despite wanting to be acknowledged. Greaser Greg even has a switchblade. They are just nasty in every sense of the word.
* TookTheBadFilmSeriously: Anthony Newley, who played Captain Manzini, stayed to the end of this movie because he believed in the project. Ironically, [[StarDerailingRole this was his last film.]]
* UncannyValley: The Garbage Pail Kids are little people in horrible, ''horrible'' rubber outfits. The suits are so badly designed that their mouths can't even ''close''. Your dreams will be haunted.
* UnintentionallyUnsympathetic:
** The Garbage Pail Kids, who engage in all sorts of unsavory acts including -- among others -- biting people's toes off, fighting, vandalism, theft, and pranking or insulting innocent bystanders.
** Captain Manzini, who insists on shielding the kids from the prejudices and evils of the real world but ''also'' wants to shove them all back into the garbage can they came from, making all his efforts at the former highly hypocritical. (Though at the end, when he fails to do so and they run off, he figures it might be for the best.)
** Tangerine is either this ''or'' UnintentionallySympathetic. If we were ''not'' supposed to feel sorry for her, then this somewhat fails due to the hints of how Juice abuses her, the investment she has in her dream, and the way the actress plays her remorse in the end as genuine. But if we ''were'' supposed to feel sorry for her, it's a bit difficult to get past the statutory rapist vibes she gives off with her entire manipulative, abusive relationship with Dodger.
* WhatDoYouMeanItsForKids: This film got away with a PG rating and is based on a franchise popular with boys aged 9 and up. However, amongst many, MANY other things we have underage drinking, thuggery, assault, a few curse words, near-nudity, implied genocide, sexual abuse, and murder. This drew the wrath of parents as well as cast member Creator/JimCummings, and got the film withdrawn from theatres only weeks after its premiere. This resulted in the film becoming one of the bigger box office bombs of 1987 and derailing the franchise as a whole; a SaturdayMorningCartoon based on the characters was set to debut on CBS that fall, but was pulled due to the controversy.
* WTHCostumingDepartment:
** The outfits for the actors portraying the Garbage Pail Kids are easily some of the most hideous and unconvincing costumes put to screen.
** Dodger and Tangerine's outfits. Most of the blatantly Eighties fashions of the time also count.
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