- Adaptation Displacement: Incident in Lake County is a remake of The McPherson Tape, an indie horror film by the same director which saw a limited release in 1989. The 1989 original is actually far more chilling, and frankly starkly realistic, than the remake, even excluding the bad TV Cut. The crudity of the camcorder footage is only too believable for going on 25 years ago.
- Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: The makeout between Matthew and Linda - where it's implied that the aliens influenced them to do so. The two don't really reference it afterwards, and the aliens don't seem to have any reason to do it other than to mess with them. The scene was stated by Word of God to be written as Padding so they could bump the movie up to ninety minutes.
- Broken Base: The performances. One half finds them unrealistic, another finds them believable.
- Fanon: A common fan theory is that Rosie is part alien, hence why she helps them. One of the talking heads thinks she's possessed.
- Funny Moments: During the chase, Tommy realises he's peed his pants over the whole thing.
- Hilarious in Hindsight:
- Strange beings that distort the camera? Why does that sound familiar?
- Brian scoffs at Tommy for buying the video camera, and his directing aspirations. Michael Buie (Brian) became a director, while Kristian Ayre (Tommy) didn't.
- Mel's actress would later star on Stargate, getting a more direct connection to space.
- Memetic Mutation: It's something of a game for fans to mock that the mother is never seen without a glass of wine. She only puts it down once in the movie to sweep up some glass.
- Narm: Kurt's rather on-the-nose reaction to Mel bringing a black man to dinner is a bit too theatrical to be realistic. It's also completely unnecessary, as the next scene would have Kurt complaining about it to his brothers.
- Older Than They Think: This film pre-dates both The Blair Witch Project and M. Night Shyamalan's Signs. It isn't the originator of the 'found footage' genre though - that belongs to Cannibal Holocaust.
- Paranoia Fuel: The aliens making the appliances go haywire is understandable, if quite freaky. But the fact that Matthew and Linda start kissing, thinking they're kissing their spouses...especially if it means the aliens can Mind Rape from far away.
- Retroactive Recognition: Viewers may be taken out of the film now that they can recognise Renee from Entourage, Mel from Sons of Anarchy and Brian from Grey's Anatomy.
- Special Effects Failure:
- The "static" effect in the TV Cut, which, at one point, doesn't even cover up the timer.
- The original has the scene where Kurt shoots the alien with his shotgun. The gun clearly has a cap in it, as the sound isn't as loud.
- Unbuilt Trope: As the first true found footage film (as Cannibal Holocaust deals with the search for the footage as well), this also has talking heads debating whether or not the footage is real.
- The Woobie: Tommy even before the aliens attack. His dad is dead, his mother is a raging alcoholic, and he has to take care of her since his brothers and sister live far away.
YMMV / Alien Abduction: Incident in Lake County