YMMV / The Mysterious Cities of Gold

  • Americans Hate Tingle and Germans Love David Hasselhoff: The very, very, very different fate of the show in its two countries of origin: obscure, rapidly forgotten show in Japan; and a generation-defining classic in the French-speaking world.
    • Also, while the show is entirely set in Latin America, and a Spanish dub exists, it was never broadcast, aside from some Latin American channels. Understandably, as Spanish conquistadores are the Big Bads.
      • The Spanish being the big bads is actually very debatable. If anything, the Olmecs are the Big Bads while everyone assumes the Spaniards are the Big Bads. There have been shown to be plenty of despicable people on both sides, with Malinche, probably being the worst you can get in this series, being an Aztec. (Even the Spanish Doctor who's traveling with her is disgusted when she suggests poisoning a village's river supply)
      • The whole show is very careful to reinforce the point that aside from the three children (and any other children they meet), very few are Black and White Morality "good guys". Aside from those mentioned above, at least one tribe of Native Americans tries to sacrifice the children, and even the fabled Heva civilization ended up in a war of mutually assured destruction with Atlantis. Arguably the central conceit in giving the medallions to children at birth is because they would only use them for the right reasons.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome
  • Ear Worm: The theme tune. Doodoododo, ahh ahh ahh...
  • Gateway Series: For UK, French and other viewers outside North America (outside of francophone Canada) this (along with Ulysses 31) was the Gateway Series to anime in the same way as Ranma or Sailor Moon was for US viewers.
  • Ho Yayinvoked: A Puppy Love version with Esteban and Tao, who cling to each other when stressed or frightened, invade each others' space at any time for any reason, and generally behave like a married couple. Also, when Tao was forced to destroy the Solaris, only the sight of Esteban calling to him could cheer him. Also: Sancho and Pedro for the adult version, or Gaspar and Gomez for the villain version.
    • In the sequel series, Esteban is overjoyed to see his friends. He hold Zia's hands... and then he jumps into Tao's arms.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Mendoza provides a rare good-guy example, for given values of good.
    • In season 2, Zares manipulate our heroes in various Batman Gambits in order to facilitate the children discovering the City of Gold for him. In the end, all he needs is reaping all the rewards. But his greatest accomplishment is keeping his true identity a secret: he's truly Ambrosius, the diminutive eccentric and friendly alchemist our heroes have being working with near the beginning. By the end of season 2, there still is no one who has discovered his secret identity (save for Tian Li who was dumb enough not to warn our heroes.).
  • Squick: Myeena is about the same age as the heroes, but she's engaged to a man who looks old enough to be her father.
    • If it helps, Myeena looks to be at least a couple of years older than Zia at least, and Wynacocha probably isn't THAT old- in his early to mid-20s would be more accurate than "old enough to be her father".
  • Ship Tease: Season 2 has a huge amount of Ship Tease, mainly with Esteban and Zia. You can see them constantly hugging and holding hands. When Zia saved Esteban's life, he gives her a smooch. Zia also has good deal of Ship Tease with Tao, Zhi, Prince Zhu and Gurban.
  • Toy Ship: Esteban × Zia
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks: After the release of the preview trailer for the sequel series, which showed that the series would be animated with Cel Shading, a lot of comments pretty much declared that the whole thing was permanently ruined.
    • Very much a case of Rose-Tinted Nostalgia Glasses on the part of some fans. Speaking as someone who loved the original series, the truth is that what made it special was being more than the sum of its parts - while some of the artwork in the original series was breathtaking, the overall quality of the animation actually varied wildly from episode to episode.
      • The cel-shading of the first couple episodes has a very conspicuous computerized look, with robotic movements for the characters. But it gets much better as the show goes on.
  • Values Dissonance: Myeena, a tween, is engaged to Wynacocha, an adult man. Apart from Tao, who's disappointed she isn't available, everyone takes it in stride. Probably a case of Truth in Television; the concept of legal adulthood is a relatively new one and adolescents getting married was fairly common back then.
    • Hell, there's enough of it in The Bible!

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