YMMV: Ugly Betty

  • Alas, Poor Scrappy: Bradford wasn't a liked character, despite the attempts to explain his behaviour to his own family.
  • Alternate Character Interpretation: From "Million Dollar Smile". Since it takes place in Betty's head, her subsconscious apparently believes there can only be one pretty sister, which, in the alternate universe of the dream, is Betty. She realises, to her horror, that being pretty made her into a self-centred bitch. So what exactly does this say about how Betty may see Hilda, since she's the pretty one in the real world...
    • Given that Betty is much smarter and far more ambitious than Hilda, being also attractive would've inflated her ego to astronomical levels. Beauty, along to her brilliance and ambition would have exposed the world to the horrors of an unbelievably bitchy Betty, who's closer to a Wihelmina 2.0, than Hilda.
    • Considering how much grief Betty gets from Hilda and Ignacio for putting her career ahead of taking care of her family (culminating in the ultra-anvilicious "Sisters on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown", whereby after quadruple-bypass surgery Ignacio suddenly also becomes senile because the plot demands it, and Hilda blames Betty not only for having a demanding full-time job that prevents her from babysitting her father, but also for her somehow preventing Hilda from working when a lucrative gig comes up—with no explanation as to why), Betty may have a point.
  • Anvilicious: Undeniably so, but it could be argued that this is a case where Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: About half of the episode "Million Dollar Smile".
  • Commitment Issues: Marc, which tanked the only serious relationship he ever had.
  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: Pretty much the entire show, but the most obvious being the entire second half of "The Past Presents the Future".
  • Die for Our Ship: The reason why Charlie turns so evil as she furthers along in her pregnancy.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Marc and Amanda, whose double-acts always steal the show.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple: Daniel/Betty
    • Ironically the US version subverted this pairing, with Daniel falling for Betty at the very end of the show and Betty largely seeing Daniel as a surrogate sibling for the bulk of the run, a deviation from the source material.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: In-show example. Sophia derides an article Mode published titled 'Ten Ways to Lose Thighs and Get Guys'. Presumably her justification of planning to write an article telling women how to manipulate men into marriage is that she wouldn't provide weight loss tips.
  • Growing the Beard: The show had a some what lacklustre second and third season only for it to come back stronger than ever in season 4.
  • Hollywood Homely: Yes, this, is the woman who plays "Ugly" Betty. Apparently all it takes to be ugly is braces and limp hair.
    • Cliff, Marc's boyfriend, lampshades this in regard to himself, at least - he points out that he's not a supermodel but still good-looking by normal standards and has a good personality, too.
    • Averted by Molly, Connor's fiancee, who is pretty but not stunningly beautiful, and is never referred to as being any less or more attractive than she actually is.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Both the Meade siblings.
  • Les Yay: Betty and Amanda, especially from Amanda's direction, specially during their awkward love triangle with Matt and Amanda's increasing guilt fantasies. Also, Claire and Yoga full-stop in Season 2, with lampshading.
  • Memetic Mutation: I'm Wilhelmina Slater and I don't get wet!
  • Moral Event Horizon: What Wilhelmina did to her sister in season 2. However, as it was never mentioned again, she went back to being a sympathetic villain while the viewers and writers simply forgot about it.
  • Nightmare Fuel: In "The Fall Issue", where during the scene of Matt and Betty eating lunch, cue Penny Meadows landing on the hood of a car, having fallen 28 floors whilst trying to shoo away pigeons. Rather jarring, even if the audience saw it coming a mile off.
  • The Scrappy: Walter... dear God, Walter...
  • Relationship Sue: Molly
  • Special Effect Failure: One recent episode has a scene in a mall...only it's not a mall. It's an atrocious green screen background.
    • Also in the season 4 episode The Bahamas Triangle... the episode was shot on location in the Bahamas, but they clearly filmed guest star Shakira's lines separately in front of a 'beach' studio backdrop. The contrast as it cuts back and forth between her and the other characters is laughably obvious.
    • The first season also featured the "fakest graveyard ever" which a TWOP reviewer described as making "The Haunted Mansion at Disneyland look like stark realism."
  • Tear Jerker:
    • Betty's scene with Wilhemmina in 4x11.
    • If Hilda crying at the end of Season 1 wasn't bad enough, the ending of "How Betty got her Grieve Back" was even worse. For the entire episode, Hilda has been spending the day in her room with Santos. He has a bandage around his stomach, so you assume that he survived getting shot. And then this conversation happens.
    Santos: We can't stay in here forever. I think I'd better go.
    Hilda: No. No. Not yet. We just need one more day. One more day.
    Santos: It's going to be okay.
    *Betty knocks at the door*
    Betty: Hey, I know you probably don't want to but any chance you want to come down and help Justine and I make dinner?
    Hilda has been sitting alone in the dark the entire time.
    Hilda: He's gone, Betty.
    Amanda: Wait... your mother died?
    Betty: Yeah.
    Amanda: How did you ever get over that?
    Betty: I didn't. I haven't.
    • The last scene of "Curveball", when Matt walks up to meet Betty and see her kissing Henry.
    • Alexi's departure.
    • Molly's death.
    • Betty finds her grandmother, and learns she has Alzheimer's. She thinks Betty is her daughter (Betty's mom) and asks forgiveness for treating her poorly after running away with Ignacio.
  • The Woobie: Daniel. For a guy who has absolutely no desire to cause problems, he often gets the short end of the stick.