YMMV / The Powerpuff Girls

For tropes pertaining to the reboot, go here.

  • Accidental Innuendo:
    • "Nobody tells me when to come! I'm a monster, I surpriiise!"
    • From "Cover Up", a monster marches up to the helpless Buttercup, and the latter gives a Little "No". Without context, it seems like the monster was about to screw her.
  • Adaptation Displacement: Several episodes were directly or indirectly distilled from PPG print material:
    • "Stray Bullet", from comic book story "Squirrely Burly" (issue #1).
    • "All Chalked Up," from Scholastic Book, same title.
    • "PowerProf.," from Scholastic Book "Powerpuff Professor."
    • "Substitute Creature," from Little Golden Book, same title.
    • "Neighbor Hood," from comic book story "Remote Controlled" (issue #7). The episode was originally penned for season 1 but fearing a lawsuit from the producers of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, the outline was given to DC Comics for the comic story.
    • "Lying Around The House," indirectly from comic book story "Big Fish Story" (issue #21).
    • "Simian Says," indirectly from comic book story "See You Later, Narrator" (issue #46).
    • "Deja View" (comic issue #50) was intended as a season 5 episode but was shelved due to being overbudget (half of the ep was to be in CGI) and having a tight deadline. Like "Neighbor Hood"/"Remote Controlled," the story outline was given to DC and made into a comic.
  • And You Thought It Would Fail: The test screening for the first pilot was an absolute disaster, with children complaining about the unusual character designs and one even going as far as to say that Craig McCracken should be firednote . Craig went to work redesigning the characters with more traditional features, but then-president of Cartoon Network Mike Lazzo reassured him that a negative reaction was better than a lukewarm reaction, and that they shouldn't change a thing.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Him's Camp Gay tendencies are an act to trick his enemies into letting their guard down. He occasionally slips out of the act when angered or excited, before quickly realizing his mistake and going back to acting. Now that's a tactic only the devil or devilish will think of using.
    • Professor Utonium reveals in "Keen On Keane" that he does, in fact, remember how he was once brainwashed by an evil cat, yet he acted like it was All Just a Dream at the end of "Cat Man Do." Did his memories eventually return (not uncommon in post-Brainwashed and Crazy cases)? Did he make the girls fill him on the weeks (days, at the least) he couldn't remember and explain how he ended up outside that building in the middle of the night? Or was he merely pretending he couldn't remember to try to make it easier on the girls?
    • In "A Very Special Blossom", Blossom stole the golf equipment to give to Professor Utonium for Father's day. Was Blossom just a Designated Villain, who felt bad for what she did and only wanted to make Professor Utonium happy, or was she a little brat who was intelligent enough not to steal but did it anyway to get praise, making it sound like it was the Professor's fault ("That's what drove me to crime!") and got what she deserved at the end?
    • Did the Rowdyruff Boys become more dumb for Characterization Marches On, or did HIM make them that way to make them follow his orders without question?
    • At the end of "Moral Decay", the sad face Buttercup makes as she finds out the Professor found her secret stash of money has sparked two theories. Did Buttercup actually feel sorry about her actions in the episode, or was she just disappointed about her money being taken away?
    • Is Bubbles genuinely ditzy, is she faking it, or is she just smarter than she seems? "Him Diddle Riddle" suggests the latter.
  • Animation Age Ghetto: Toyed with. The cartoon was originally conceived as "The Whoopass Girls," and the fact that it wasn't exactly originally conceived as a children's show eventually showed...big time. All while not actually making it inappropriate for kids.
  • Ass Pull:
    • In "Insect Inside" Blossom produces a giant jar to contain a mass of cockroaches. Lampshaded by the narrator who talks about Blossom's knowledge of where to get giant jars, and in a later episode where she pulls out a giant match, which she claims to have gotten from the same place.
    • During "HIM Diddle Riddle," the girls are tasked with taking down a giant monster without using their powers. Buttercup runs off and comes back in a helicopter with a gatling gun. Where did that come from, how did she get it, and how does she know how to pilot it?
  • Author's Saving Throw: Many fans did NOT like Rainbow's fate at the end of the Season One episode "Mime For A Change". Perhaps to rectify this, he is seen again at the girls' birthday party (in the season two episode "Birthday Bash") as a free and happy clown. What helps is that the writers never intended to hurt Rainbow at the end of "Mime...".
  • Badass Decay:
    • The first episode Him was introduced, he was presented as a hellish almighty powerful being so fearsome we can't even say his name, and was pretty solid Nightmare Fuel. By the last time we see him in the show he turned into just as much of a feeble joke just like any other villain.
    • And we've seen what would happen if he won as well, and it's not pretty. He may not be as deadly when last seen, but he's no doubt still dangerous to be taken lightly.
    • The Rowdyruff Boys have gone through this too. When they first appeared, they were taken completely serious to the Powerpuff Girls, due to being the most powerful opponents they've ever faced. After getting revived, they spend much of their times being Dumb Jock villains, and the Girls don't even take them that seriously anymore.
    • In this series, Mojo Jojo was arguably one of the most badass rivals of The Girls, yet, demonstrated, as he, was able to succeed in ruling the world, about three times, take on all 3 of the Girls, using his gadgets and brains, took out an alien overlord with ease, lived in a lair, that was formerly a volcano mountain, etc. However, in The Powerpuff Girls Z, he was portrayed as far less competent, and more of a dimwitted, Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain, and wasn't even taken as a threat, unlike the original Mojo.
  • Base-Breaking Character:
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment:
    • At the start of the episode "Catastrophe", the girls are shown at a ceremony where they are rewarded with a bronze statue and "Powerpuff Day". The ceremony is soon interrupted by a monster searching for his cat, who the girls leave to deal with. The ceremony is never mentioned again throughout the episode.
    • That... weird hot dog song in the first episode.
  • Broken Base:
    • The 2014 re-designs of the girls have solicited reactions raging from "awww how cute!" to "OH GOD KILL IT WITH FIRE!". And now that the special itself has aired, opinions are divided on if the special was a fun and fast paced trip down memory lane that should lead to a revival series, or if it was a rushed mess that needs to just stay a one off. There is something of an agreement that the last few minutes of the special felt rushed and that it would have benefited from being longer, but whether or not if a person thought the rest of the special was good or not is, naturally, a matter of opinion.
    • The 2009 special. Some say it is the best episode of Powerpuff Girls while others say it is one of the worst. Still others prefer this episode as the Series Finale.
    • The announcement of an actual reboot set for 2016 has done this. There are those that are ecstatic about the girls coming back, and those who think that the reboot will be of inferior quality to the original series. Not helping is that fact that it's been confirmed that unlike that 2014 special, the trio will not have their original voice actresses (who weren't even made aware of the reboot until the new voice actresses were announced). Even more divisive is the fact that while the girls will have different voice actresses, all of the other returning characters will be keeping their original voice actors.
    • Most fans' problem with both the redesigns and the new voice actors was that no other character got one, which left many wondering what the point of them was.
    • "Equal Fights." Some believe that feminism was too weighty a subject for a lighthearted children's show, while others feel that its motives are clear and effective (at the very least, it's the best they could have done with this subject under these circumstances). Others meet midway and say it was a good Aesop but executed a bit too clunky.
    • After previews of the 2016 reboot were shown online by Cartoon Network, response to the change in art and animation style compared to the original series has been rather mixed. In the case of the artstyle, some have said the reboot looks closer to the style of another Cartoon Network series, Clarence, and only slightly like the original series. The animation has also been noted as looking "smoother" compared to the original show's "snappier" animation, and consequently the smoother animation style looks to have made action sequences not as fast paced as in the original series. By the time the show actually premiered, more revealed elements from Miss Bellum getting Chuck Cunningham Syndrome to a misguided attempt at Getting Crap Past the Radar involving Bubbles and Blossom twerking with a panda bear, have caused the reboot to become modest Snark Bait on Tumblr. Only time will tell if other aspects about the show will either prove just as base breaking, or if it'll be as liked as the original series in spite of the changes.
    • Many fans see "Members Only" as one of the funniest episodes of the series, but there are some who are rather peeved that the episode had Major Glory and the other Dexter's Laboratory superheroes being chauvinistic and condescending to the Powerpuff Girls.
  • Character Rerailment: Many fans despised the Mayor after the later seasons flanderized him into being an idiotic manchild, but the 2014 special has him back to being the kindhearted and only slightly ditzy goof that he was at the start of the show. He even encourages Professor Utonium not to give up on snapping the girls out of Mojo Jojo's mind control and expresses remorse for insulting Ms. Bellum for refusing to open his jar of pickles.
  • Complete Monster: Season 4's two-parter "Knock it Off" has one-shot villain Professor Dick Hardly. Introduced as the sleazy college roommate of Professor Utonium, Dick quickly sees the potential of the Powerpuff Girls as a way to get rich quick. Getting the girls to supply him with Chemical X, Dick makes his own knock-offs of the girls and starts a business selling these copies as superheroes. Due to Dick's greed, however, these knock-offs have been created with minimum materials and Chemical X, meaning that, even though they are aware, they are mentally stunted and physically deformed. When the effort of superheroing causes the knock-offs to fall apart, Dick's happy because it means he gets to sell even more copies. At one point Dick notices one of his knock-offs is a perfect Buttercup copy, his response is to order the girl melted down for her "excessive" Chemical X. The episode's climax has Dick capturing the real Powerpuff Girls and killing them slowly by draining them of their Chemical X. When Utonium offers to be a slave, making Chemical X for Dick for the rest of his life, if Dick will let the girls live, Dick only laughs and says he'll kill the girls and keep Utonium as a slave. Greed incarnate, Dick Hardly was notable for being the only villain on the show to be played completely seriously, with no humorous quirks to detract from his viciousness.
  • Crack Pairing:
    • Each girl has her own popular, cracky pairing in the fandom: Bubbles x Him, Blossom x Mojo, and Buttercup x Ace though the last one was actually canon for one episode. Each of these pairs one of the girls with her Arch-Enemy.
    • Any or all of the Powerpuff Girls with their respective Rowdyruff Boy counterpart is also a popular pairing choice.
  • Crazy Awesome:
    • Mojo Jojo at the end of "Forced Kin".
    • HIM in "Him Diddle Riddle".
    • The Mayor in "Impeach Fuzz".
    • Harold and Marianne Smith.
  • Creepy Awesome: HIM, all the time.
  • Crossover Ship:
  • Critical Research Failure: Done by Blossom of all people in "Power Noia":
    Blossom: Seven doesn't have a square root. It's prime!Actual correct answer? 
  • Designated Hero:
  • Designated Monkey: Buttercup comes off as this at times. She gets put on the receiving end of humiliation and seems to get less respect compared to her sisters. Some examples include in "Nuthin' Special", wherein she spends the entire episode sad and angry over how she doesn't have a special power if you don't count tongue rolling, "Cover Up", when she was forced to give up her Security Blanket despite the fact she is also 5 and Bubbles has Octi, and in "Down And Dirty" where she gets kicked out of the house and is chased by villagers with pitchforks just because she was unwilling to bathe.
  • Designated Villain: The Hawk in "Stray Bullet." It only wanted to eat and possibly feed its young. Alas, it bore the unfortunate fate of being a predator in a children's cartoon and being pit against an archetypical "cute" animal, and, as a result was slated to die.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: The Rowdy Ruff Boys, Mojo Jojo, the Gangreen Gang (particularly Ace), and Princess Morbucks.
  • Ear Worm:
    • The ending theme, including the remix for the movie.
    • The children's song about Ms. Keane from "Substitute Creature".
    • "La La Love, La La Love makes the world go 'rounddddd."
    • All songs from the Musical Episode, mainly "FREEDOM BEEF!"
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • The Rowdyruff Boys were intended to be one shot villains, but they garnered such huge fan support with tons of fan art to even a website built around them (which is unfortunately now disabled, the link is to an archive of the site) that the writers eventually caved and brought them back, redesigned and having more depth then just being evil counterparts to the girls.
    • Bunny, the fourth Powerpuff Girl that Blossom, Bubbles, and Buttercup made, has some love from the fan-base, probably due to her episode being an absolute Tear Jerker. She's even mentioned in Bleedman's Powerpuff Girls Doujinshi.
    • The Powerpunk Girls, of a Mirror Universe in the comic exclusive story "Deja View" (that was planned to be on TV), are fairly popular as well.
    • Robin Snyder from "Superfriends". She only appeared as a major character in that one episode (but is a reoccuring background extra), but Robin is one of the most popular characters on the show because of how cute she is, also especially for her "I was an accident too" line.
    • Dick Hardly, while he only appeared in one episodes because he was Killed Off for Real, but is still among the show's most popular villains.
  • Evil Is Cool:
    • Mojo Jojo, though more of an Anti-Hero, still counts for being such an epic Big Bad, and HIM, who happens to be Satan and extra points for that the Girls are afraid of him. They are both so awesome in all their appearences as main antagonists, that they're the most recurring ones.
    • The Rowdyruff Boys may be loud and rude in general, but they definitely fit into this trope as they actually defeated the Powerpuff Girls in a 3 vs 3 fight.
  • Evil Is Sexy:
    • Sedusa, Femme Fatale, and Ace of the Gangreen Gang, for some female fans.
    • Mojo actually also has a few fangirls.
  • Fanon:
    • Professor Utonium as at least half-Asian pops up due to his resemblance to Samurai Jack and the fact it fits a popular stereotype.
    • Quite a few fans think the girls see Ms Bellum as a maternal figure, though Utonium is still shipped with Keane more than Bellum,
    • There are disproportionate amount of fanfics about the characters as teens, however there's quite a bit of fanon, especially in Dark Fics, that they cannot age due to being Artificial Humans. Other side-effects include being immortal and (especially in Blossom's case) being very precocious to the point of Creepy Child degrees.
    • Fans ignore the fact the Powerpuffs have no fingers, toes, or noses.
    • Buttercup is given an individual superpower, much like Blossom's ice breath.
    • Some fans believe "Princess" is a nickname.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: The episode "Town And Out" is the most noteworthy case of this, which features the girls and the professor moving to Citiesville where they endure the abuse of its unfriendly and apathetic citizens; the apparent intent was to showcase how the girls would fare in an allegedly more "realistic" setting where their powers might be frowned upon by the public; instead, fans tended to see it as a needlessly cruel and unpleasant episode.
  • Fandom Berserk Button: Don't you ever mispronounce the show's name as "The Powderpuff Girls" in the presence of the fans.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple:
    • A fair portion of the fanbase were in favor of Professor Utonium and Ms. Keane hooking up. Alas, it was not to be. (So far.)
    • Most fanfics consist of pairing up usually aged up versions of the Powerpuff Girls with the Rowdyruff Boys. The default ships are Blossom/Brick, Buttercup/Butch, and Bubbles/Boomer however some fans mix them up.
    • Though not as popular as others, when it comes to femslash most pair up Blossom and Princess.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: In a society where children are told to cooperate, we have the episode "Monstra-City". An episode that shows the complications of immigration/integration. In the end the only thing they learned was that not everyone is able to live together.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment:
    • "Knock It Off" was a parody of misrepresenting the Powerpuff Girls and using them for merchandise. In 2016, many would argue the reboot to resemble something Dick Hardly would come up with.
    • The "When Doves Cry" reference in "City Of Frownsville" is a lot less funny now that Prince is dead as of 2016.
  • Genius Bonus: One of the names on the Permanent Naughty List in the Christmas Special is Adolf Schickelgruber, also known as Adolf Hitler (Schickelgruber was his father's original last name).
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Japan absolutely cherished the PPG. So much so that they made their own version of the series. Even a decade after the cartoon finished, the girls were still being used to market things.
  • Girl Show Ghetto:
    • Averted, one of the most revered cartoons during its era by both boys and girls. And despite the ass-kicking, the girls were pretty girly.
    • At the same time, online you'll see a lot of men mention that as boys they were embarrassed to be seen watching a "girl's show" like The Powerpuff Girls and treated it as a Guilty Pleasure. This is despite the fact that the cartoon wasn't female-aimed. It was a unisex cartoon that just happened to have a feminine aesthetic.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: "Girls Gone Mild", in which Standards and Practicesnote  gives an editorial fiat on acceptable superheroic behavior, looks eerily prescient of the 2016 reboot, which, by editorial mandate, nerfs the girls' powers, cuts down the violence and cheeky sexual humor, and offers up obvious cookie-cutter morals the original show did much more subtly or mocked/subverted outright.
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: One episode, "Meet The Beat-Alls", has a script composed of song lyrics from The Beatles. This is heartwarming to a fan of both PPG and The Beatles on its own, but even moreso when Ringo Starr himself composed a song for the 2014 CGI special.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    "A wife can really cut her husband down to size by making fun of his what?" His manhood. (Which is the number 1 answer, labeled as Shrinky Dinky)
    Steve: All you women that's out there clapping, listen to me... Don't call it your man's Shrinky Dinky, okay, you'll wind up in a real situation, I can tell you that right now. You got a lot of stuff, but what I ain't 'bout to be is Shrinky Dinky.
  • Ho Yay: In the episode called "The City of Clipsville," Professor Utonium is about to marry Ms. Bellum. But then when he takes off her veil to see her face, it turns out to be Mojo Jojo who reveals that he has always loved the professor. This is also a serious example of Getting Crap Past the Radar.
  • Idiot Plot:
    • Dance Pantsed's plot hinged on the girls not realizing that they could've picked up the jar of pickles with their Fingerless Hands (though, to be fair, it was lampshaded by the mayor).
    • In "Daylight Savings", both Ms. Keanie and Professor Utonium grab the Idiot Ball HARD by somehow getting the impression that making the girls get some sleep (so that they can be awake enough to do such incredibly important things like answering correctly what is a dog and what is a ball) is somehow more important than lives of thousands of people from Townsville. On top of that, Professor Utonium could have easily fixed the problem by just making some device that makes you instantly awake or something.
    • In "The Rowdyruff Boys", Mojo Jojo learns how the girls were created by calling the Professor on the phone, identifying himself only as a stranger to Bubbles when she's the first to answer before putting the Professor on. The reason he even comes up with his own formula by which to create the boys is because the Professor apparently has no problem telling a total stranger, who should sound a lot like the girls' archnemesis the formula that made them come to life!
    • "Monkey See, Doggie Two" seems to deliberately invoke this trope, as Mojo tries his scam to transform the whole world into dogs yet again, with the exception of the Powerpuff Girls, even though the change had left them at a clear disadvantage as well. Mojo's entire plot was to ensure that the girls could not defeat him the same way they did the last time they were dogs, by arming himself with a shield to prevent them from biting him. It completely flies past him that now he simply opened himself up to one of their usual beatdowns since they're still themselves, and the girls lampshade this idiocy by telling him that they plan on doing exactly that.
    • Both episodes to feature the Dynamo ride on this:
      • In "Uh Oh Dynamo" the entire plot is kicked off by the Professor randomly freaking out about the safety of the girls after just a few punches from the mutant fish creature, even though they've easily faced worse foes before. He then assembles the massive robot Dynamo for the girls to use when the monster returns yet again, threatening to ground them if they refuse. They end up doing a lot more harm than good, destroying the entire city before they've defeated the monster.
      • "Live and Let Dynamo" takes it even further, where we find out that the Professor didn't destroy the Dynamo after its first rampage, a revelation that leaves the girls just as baffled. Even more egregious however is that it is the Mayor who somehow got into Dynamo, activated it, and caused it to go out of control yet again. While the Mayor is known for his stupidity, absolutely no explanation is offered for why he was anywhere near the robot, the same robot that he himself ordered the girls not to use again.
  • Incest Yay Shipping: It's not uncommon within the fandom to pair the girls with one another.
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Buttercup full-stop, if you think about it long enough. First of all, the professor had no good reason officially to name her Buttercup other than that it starts with "B". Second, she has no unique power (though she is occasionally implied to have better super strength than her sisters). Finally, nobody really pays her any attention, and when they do, it's usually when she's in trouble. Even some fans never seemed to care much, instead opting to exploit her misery and attitude for kicks and giggles.
    • Mojo Jojo, in episodes like "A Very Special Blossom" when he is not planning to commit crimes and is only just earnestly saluting his dead father, but nearly gets arrested for something Blossom did, and "The Powerpuff Girls Rule!", when he gives up on making the world better.
    • Blossom in "A Very Special Blossom". She may have stolen the golf equipment and was implied to feel not entirely at fault for it but she had good intentions behind it; she had only wanted to make the Professor happy.
    • Boomer of the Rowdyruff Boys could come off as this. Yes, he is part of an evil trio, but he gets bullied by his brothers a lot. The fact that Boomer is somewhat nicer than they are and how cute he is certainly amps up his woobie-ness factor.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships: The Powerpuff Girls themselves can be guilty of this, but out of the three of them, Blossom takes the cake. Not only has she been shipped with Mojo Jojo, HIM, Brick, Boomer, Butch, Princess, her own sisters, and her evil counterpart Berserk, but she has also been shipped with Dexter, Jack Spicer, and AKU, of all people!
  • Love to Hate:
    • Him. He manages to be one of the most popular villains in the series to be incredibly frightening and efficient, especially in the earlier seasons.
    • Mojo Jojo. And Princess. And the Gangrene Gang. And Sedusa. Not so much the less evil Fuzzy Lumpkins or the completely hapless Amoeba boys.
    • Dick Hardly. His one appearance means it's the primary reason for his popularity.
    • Princess Morbucks. She had many appearances where her snooty attitude ruined something, coming to a head when she wanted all kids on the naughty list except for her.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Him, mainly in his earlier appearances. Sometimes Mojo Jojo, particularly in the movie.
  • Memetic Molester:
    • On /co/, the question "Why did the Professor want to create a little girl?" is often brought up.
    • Him, because of his creepy mannerisms and being a transvestite villain. Not to mention one episode had him licking Professor Utonium.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • From "Cover Up," a floored Buttercup's pathetic "Nooo" when a rather diminutive monster marches toward her. She just let herself get beaten up because she hadn't rubbed her good-luck blanket, but when taken out of context, this clip has some rather unfortunate Fridge Horror. Needless to say, without context, Poopers had a field day remixing this clip.
    • "Eat your pea, Professor!"
      • "SWALLOW IT!"
    • "I'm being oppressed!"
    • "P-P-PARENT TEACHER CONFERENCE! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!"
    • "That's the evilest thing I can imagine."
    • "THE CITY OF TOWNSVILLE IS ON FIRE!!!"
  • Misaimed Fandom: In the Clip Show spoofing episode, one of the "flashbacks" was of the Powerpuff Girls being bimboish teenagers who have given up crime fighting to hang out at the mall and flirt with the also teenaged Rowdyruff Boys. The whole sequence is rumored to have been a parody of extremely bad PPG fanfiction. A great deal of fans completely missed the point however, and the sequence ironically ended up inspiring even more fanfiction with similar plots.
  • Moe: Bubbles is cuteness personified. The other girls have their moments, too.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Dick Hardly murdering a perfect Buttercup clone for her Chemical X. And later on, tries to kill the real Girls for more Chemical X, and forces Professor Utonium to watch them die. This is most likely the main reason why he is the only human character in the show to be Killed Off for Real.
    • Mojo crossed it in the movie by enslaving Townsville with super monkeys, destroying half the town, and betraying the girls trust in the process. Since it was his first evil world domination plan, he apparently couldn't cross the line any further in the TV series. See Villain Decay.
    • Him crossed it in "Speed Demon" where he took over Townsville and turned it into apocalyptic wasteland. This drives Townsville citizens insane and depressed. And this would happen if Him would have succeeded in his plans.
    • In-universe example, Played for Laughs: in Twas the Fight Before Christmas, Princess switches the nice and naughty lists to make it look like she's the only nice kid in the world. As soon as Santa finds out about this and actually sees how naughty Princess is due to her rubbing her demands on wanting to be a Powerpuff Girl in his face, he has no choice but to induct her onto the Permanent Naughty Plaque.
    • Mitch Mitchellson torturing and ultimately flushing a live hamster down the toilet, when you really think about it and get past his cartoonish methods of torture, is actually kind of horrifying. Even the girls end up putting him in a hamster wheel with the now giant, irradiated hamster that intends to eat him.
    • Buttercup nearly crossed this line in "All Chalked Up" when she destroyed Bubbles's chalk and made the latter cry, and was even smiling while Bubbles is bawling. Subverted when it's hinted later on that she regretted it and sort of apologizes to Bubbles.
    • Some fans thought Buttercup crossed this when she stole villains' teeth to get rich in "Moral Decay", and repeatedly abused Bubbles to knock out her teeth. Though almost everyone was out of character in this episode and it's regarded as one of the worst in the series. Let's also not forget that Blossom and Bubbles weren't saints in this episode, since the episode ends with them selling out their own sister to the bad guys to beat her up, complete with punching/kicking sounds and Buttercup grunting in pain.
  • Most Annoying Sound:
    • Princess, when she whines about not getting her way.
    • For some, Bubbles' crying can be this due to how shrill it can get.
    • "City of Frownsville" is 11 minutes of the entirety of Townsville bawling. It's as grating on the ears as it sounds, if not more.
  • Most Wonderful Sound:
    • Bubbles giggling.
    • The sound(s) the girls make when flying.
    • The theme song and outro by Biz, the triumphant voice of the Narrator, the endearing, soft-spoken voice of the loving Professor Utonium and the adorable, collective laughter of the girls after a Heartwarming moment and/or a job well done. Also:
  • Narm: In "Cover Up", the scene where Buttercup gets beat up by a monster not much bigger than her loses all its suspense when Buttercup gives a Little "No". It's just the way she says it that makes it so narmful. And the fact that without context, the whole thing just looks like a rape scene just adds to its narmy factor.
  • Narm Charm:
    • Bubbles's bawling in "All Chalked Up" may sound over-the-top, but the moment building up to it plus the sad music in the background whilst Bubbles is sobbing still makes it a Tear Jerker.
    • In "Cover Up", Buttercup's delivery of her Little "No" might be pretty darn funny, but the horrified yet accepting look on her face that she's about to get pummeled by the monster, doubled by Buttercup's relentless bad luck before that scene is nonetheless emotionally grueling.
  • Nausea Fuel:
    • In "Paste Makes Waste" a fly gets hit with toxic waste, mutating it into a disgusting thing about three times its size that can barely fly under its own weight. It falls into Elmer's paste, and, without looking, Elmer eats the mutant fly with a handful of glue.
    • "Sun Scream" focuses almost entirely on the girls suffering sunburn, with even the simplest of movements being cringeworthy to watch. The episode ends with the girls applying Aloe Vera which cracks off their sunburned skin (we even see one of Buttercup's flakes dripping). The con artists they were confronting are so disgusted that they beg to be put in jail.
    • The Rowdyruff Boys doing the most disgusting things ever in "The Boys are Back In Town", including throwing a scab at the Girls, hacking loogies at them, and stuffing a slug down Bubbles' dress.
    • Bubbles (disguised as Boomer) being forced to eat a cockroach in "Bubble Boy". And in that same episode, Bubbles trying to hack up a loogie like the other two Boys, along with her sisters telling her how to do so in graphic detail.
    • The fact that Buttercup once got into a relationship with Ace in "Buttercrush" is pretty gross, especially since he's a teenager and she's only 5. Of course, while he was revealed to only have been using her, it doesn't make it any less creepy.
  • Never Live It Down:
    • While Buttercup is in fact a Jerk with a Heart of Gold and has proven herself to be a decent person despite her violent and rude ways, a few fans refuse to forget about episodes where she is particularly deplorable and given inexplicable Ron the Death Eater traits by the writers, such as knocking villains' teeth out just so she can get money in "Moral Decay" and making Bubbles cry in "All Chalked Up".
    • The citizens of Townsville may forever be associated with all the times they've ostracized the girls (such as in "Sweet 'N Sour").
  • One-Scene Wonder: The flashback in "City Of Clipsville" showing the Powerpuff Girls and Rowdyruff Boys as teenagers. It's supposed to be a Take That! to fanfic writers who'd make something like that, but it instead became one of the most popular scenes in the series.
  • Paranoia Fuel: The episode "Supper Villain" hammers in that your average, everyday neighbor with an average, everyday family could actually be a sociopathic supervillian wannabe without anyone knowing it.
  • Periphery Demographic:
    • At the peak of popularity, most of the show's fans were boys... not that every guy would admit to watching it in public. Nowadays it seems fine to admit you watched this show. The show was intended for a unisex audience, though the merchandise was aimed at girls.
    • The episode "Meet The Beat-Alls," originally conceived as 11 straight minutes of Parental Bonus, was popular amongst children in the intended demographic who were big Beatles fans.
  • Poor Man's Substitute: Craig McCracken originally wanted Jack Black to voice the Gnome in "See Me, Feel Me, Gnomey" but by the time they got to production he was too busy and expensive, so they instead got Jess Harnell doing a Jack Black-like voice.
  • The Scrappy:
  • Seasonal Rot:
    • Of the four seasons that were under Craig McCracken's supervision, season two is often regarded as the weakest. Although it does have some fan favorite episodes such as "Beat Your Greens", "The Powerpuff Girls' Best Rainy Day Adventure Ever", and "Speed Demon", several episodes of it often crossed the line into Sadist Show territory and often relied on using an Idiot Plot more than anything else.
    • Seasons five and six mark a noticeable decline in quality, making the jokes much more cruder than in previous episodes and putting the characters through very noticeable Flanderization. This is because Craig and most of his crew left to work on Foster's, leaving the show to the same production team that worked on Dexter's during Seasonal Rot while Genndy was at Samurai Jack.
  • He Really Can Act:
    • Tara Strong as Bubbles. She may be a funny ditz most of the time, but when she's sad, you know you'll be too. Possibly the best example could be Bubbles's horrifyingly realistic blubbering fit in "All Chalked Up".
    • Tom Kane as the Professor during his sobbing fit during "Knock It Off", and as HIM for making any scene he appears in terrifying.
  • September 11th: It was dedicated for the episode: The City of Frownsville.
  • Special Effect Failure: There are some points in the series where you can clearly tell that characters have been chroma-keyed into the scene.
  • Strawman Has a Point:
    • Buttercup's attitude's towards Elmer after he became a monster. She's treated as being in the wrong for refusing to apologize to him after bullying him, but as she points at, Elmer was attacking people that didn't even do anything to him, including his teacher that actually stood up for him.
    • Femme Fatale isn't exactly wrong about male superheroes (and even male supervillains) tending to be more popular than female superheroes (and female supervillains). She also had a point in how heroines like Supergirl and Batgirl are essentially just extensions of their male counterparts.
    • The mayor of Citysville rightly calls the girls out on the fact that they have a tendency to cause as much damage as they prevent—in this case, blowing up a bridge (which will cost roughly $3 million to fix) just to catch some bank robbers when they could have simply used their superhuman strength to overpower the crooks. Downplayed somewhat in that their heroism prevents the villains from deliberately causing more damage than they already were, and the ending of "Paste Makes Waste" suggests that the girls use their powers to repair the damage they cause after a crisis is dealt with.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Similar to the below mentioned "Beat Alls" example, Cartoon Network actually did manage to get former Beatle Ringo Starr to guest star in the 2014 computer animated special as a math themed celebrity named Fibonacci Sequin, but he doesn't get many speaking lines (though he does drop a hilarious Beatles reference at one point) and never sings (odd when one remembers that dancing played a part in the special's plot). At the very least, though, CN and Ringo did make a song and music video called "Wish I Was a Powerpuff Girl" that aired during commercial breaks leading up to the special.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • Who else wanted the villains to sing a Beatles cover in "Meet the Beat-Alls?"
    • Some fans were likely disappointed that the best they could come up with for Buttercup's special power was to curl her tongue, especially as in that episode, the girls exhibited completely new powers they'd never used before.
  • Tastes Like Diabetes:
    • "Love Makes the World Go Round" is a generally fine song, though the part sung by Blossom at the end is truly a triumphant example of saccharine lyrics.
    Blossom: Puppy dogs, kitty cats, swimming through love.
    • The Show Within a Show "The Wonderful Whimsical World of Willy" in Neighbor Hood revolves around an absurdly cutesy and saccharine kids show that features horses with Happy meters, Maids making happy stew, talking squirrels, and all hosted by a clowny man who throws on happy and sad masks.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic:
    • Buttercup in the episode "Cover Up". The episode tries to show that somehow she's insane for liking a blanket and she put all her strength into it, but remember that she is only 5, that's a perfectly suitable age for somebody who likes a blanket. The fact that she cries her heart out when the blanket is lost doesn't help at all. Also at the end of the episode she is understandably pissed at Blossom for giving her a fake blanket, and she is forced to give up her blanket to match. Not to mention, Bubbles is allowed to keep Octi, but Buttercup isn't allowed a blanket for some reason.
    • Buttercup again in "Moral Decay", for a few viewers. She was being a humongous jerk, but many viewers thought that her sisters leading her to get the shit beaten out of her and later getting her money taken away at the end was too harsh of a punishment.
    • Rainbow the Clown. He wasn't even in control of his actions while in Mr. Mime mode, so him getting arrested can come off as harsh.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic:
    • Elmer Sglue from "Paste Makes Waste". While the other kids had no right to bully him, he rampages through the entire city after becoming a giant paste monster, even tearing up a few buildings and using them as bowling pins. It's not even a case of him going berserk—he was in complete control of his actions the entire time and could have stopped whenever he felt like it. His attacking Miss Keane and trying to suffocate Blossom and Bubbles are particularly heinous acts since they had tried to stop the bullies from picking on him.
    • Blossom and Bubbles in "Cover Up". The episode attempts to show them as in the right, but they shamelessly pick on Buttercup for her having a Security Blanket, even Bubbles, who has an emotional crutch of her own, Octi the octopus. At the end, they even force Buttercup to give up her blanket.
  • Ugly Cute / Grotesque Gallery:
    • The Powerpuff Girls Xtreme.
    • Bunny.
  • Values Dissonance:
    • It's hard not to see Him's effeminate personality and scare tactics as playing at least a little into Gay Panic. Of corse, he's terrifying for plenty of other reasons.
    • Lil' Arturo showing off a switchblade-style comb to the Powerpuff Girls' school. These days, it would more or less be justified for the girls to take him down for bringing at first glance what appears to be a weapon to class.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion:
    • You'd probably be forgiven for mistaking Buttercup for a boy, because of her tomboyish behavior. Being voiced by Elizabeth Daily certainly doesn't help, due to Daily using a raspy and manly voice.
    • Him is occasionally mistaken for a female because of the way he dresses. However, it's occasionally said in the show that Him doesn't really have a gender.
  • Villain Decay:
    • If we look at things chronologically from the movie to the TV show, this happened to Mojo Jojo. He actually succeeded in taking over and destroying much of Townsville in the movie but is always failing in the show. He did, however, have the girls' help in the movie. They weren't so easily tricked afterwards.
    • More or less happened to a few other villains as well in The Movie. Before the Powerpuff Girls were around, the Gangreen Gang were a very frightening street gang. In the show, they often needed the help of someone else to even be considered a threat.
      • In "Girls Gone Mild", a news reporter is worried that without the Powerpuff Girls, the Ganggreen Gang will return to their former threat.
    • Him during "Meet the Beat-Alls" goes from usually being a bigger than threat than any of the other villains in the episode, at times more so than all of them combined, to being nothing more than just a another member on a team and is easily overpowered by the girls even with help from Princess and Fuzzy, even though the latter has been able to fight all three of them on his own.
  • Wangst: Both invoked and Played for Laughs with Bud Smith.
    Bud: Nobody understands me!
  • What an Idiot:
    • Princess insulting Santa Claus in front of him in the Christmas Special.
    • The Professor in "Town and Out", who took the girls and moved away from his comfortable, self-employed life in Townsville to live in a disgusting apartment in a city where neither he nor the girls would be remotely happy. Everyone in Citysville counts as well, purely for Bullying a Dragon reasons.
    • Stan and Sandra Practice in "Girls Gone Mild" are huge ones for threatening to sue the Professor if the girls use their powers, even though their very city comes under attack from supernatural threats very regularly, which actually comes to a head at the end of the episode when the city gets destroyed, and they refuse to relent until their own lives are in danger.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: The show itself originally wasn't intended for kids (after all, its working title was The Whoop-Ass Girls), but when it was pitched to Cartoon Network, the executives wanted it to be directed towards the younger audience everyone knows and love today. The original intent becomes more and more obvious later in the series.
  • The Woobie:
    • More often than not, it's Bubbles. She's so good at looking like a kicked puppy when she's sad.
    • All three Girls in the movie, because of how much they were ostracized by the townsfolk.
    • All three Girls fall under this in "Sweet 'N Sour" where the Fluffy Bunch is robbing Townsville blind due to their blatant cuteness. It's hard not to wanna hug all three girls when the whole town turns on them and denounces them as animal haters.
    • All of the Girls in "Little Miss Interprets" after they wrongly think the Professor doesn't want them anymore.
    • What with the Adult Fear he goes through several times, it's hard not to feel bad for Professor Utonium, especially if one is a parent themselves.
    • Buttercup in "Cover Up", when she cries about her blankie being missing. Plus, it can seem unfair to some, since Bubbles is allowed to keep Octi, but Buttercup ends up getting rid of her blanket by the end of the episode.
      • Actually, Buttercup counts in various other episodes, but she usually crosses over with Jerkass Woobie.
    • Mojo Jojo in The Powerpuff Girls Rule. His dream had been shattered, and though he wanted to rule the world, it's still sad to see Mojo Jojo lose all hope for the first time. Also, after he finds hope again, we learn that he had good intentions all along, which makes him qualify even more.
    • Blossom in "The Mane Event" when she gets embarrassed by her Traumatic Haircut, and in "Not So Awesome Blossom" after she confidence is lost.
    • Robin in "Super Friends" after the trio ditch her repeatedly to do superhero work, especially if you've been abandoned by your friends in real life. Then her next friend Princess Morbucks only uses her and talks her into committing a crime, and turns her in.
    • Ms Bellum, since she has to deal with the Mayor's idiocy a lot.
    • Bunny from "Twisted Sister". She truly did mean well, but she missed the point of the Girls's instructions and unintentionally made things worse. Even worse, the Girls tell her she's not meant to be one of them (although they did regret it later). The poor girl ends up dying at the end of the episode.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/ThePowerpuffGirls