Follow TV Tropes


YMMV / As the World Turns

Go To

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Are Jack and Carly really one of the show's super couples victimized by the evil Julia or is Jack a jerk who emotionally abused and gaslighted poor Julia to the point of madness—constantly telling her there was nothing going on between him and Carly when it was plain as day that there was, then blaming Julia for their failed marriage that he was never invested in—and therefore deserved every terrible thing Julia did to them? The fact that the writers needed to go so far as to have Julia kidnap and rape Jack before viewers stopped feeling sorry for her tells you that a huge chunk of the audience sympathized with her.
  • Advertisement:
  • Ass Pull: Reid dies and is just able to give his heart to a dying Chris so he can survive.
  • Creator's Pet: Gwen Norbeck. She was only meant to be a temporary character, but the writers took a real shine to Jennifer Landon, the actress who played her, and decided to keep her on the show and integrate her into the major storylines. This included making her the little sister to Carly and Rosanna—both of whom are at least twenty years older than her; transformed her into a giant woobie when her baby died and Casey and Will fought over her; made her a frequent target of stalkers, which included turning Adam Munson, who'd served as The Conscience to many other characters, into a sociopath and rapist against her; and her singing and songwriting capabilities were lauded and praised by everyone and hailed as genius. Anyone who didn't think of Gwen as anything but a perfect angel was instantly vilified.
  • Advertisement:
  • Designated Hero: Jack, as cited in the "Alternate" post. In Real Life and even on the show itself, his treatment of Julia could be considered emotional and even physical abuse, yet he's lauded as one of the show's good guys.
  • Die for Our Ship: The Noah/Luke/Reid love triangle. Literally, in fact.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: James, Damian, and Craig, even in universe.
  • Ending Fatigue: Many people felt this about Barbara's kidnapping. She was stuck in the warehouse for many episodes without anything actually happening.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Eric Sheffer Stevens is a Real Life example of this trope. A large number of people, including those who despised the character Reid and/or were annoyed at all the screen-time newbie actors were given, praised him and his acting abilities. Reid also counts, partly because he was so different from the other characters: a lampshade hanging, snarky, Only Sane Man who was funny and enjoyable to watch. Also because Luke finally got a love interest who was someone other than Noah.
  • Fanfic Fuel: Reid Oliver is brought to Oakdale because he is blackmailed by Luke. Luke eventually reveals he didn't actually have any dirt on him, but it's never revealed exactly what it was Dr. Oliver was so desperate to hide.
    • Canon Fodder: Reid's childhood. After his death, his uncle gave a couple of hints about it, though it was clear the two didn't get along very well.
  • Fridge Horror: The new liver Luke has (which was illegally obtained) won't last forever, he will eventually need a new one. However, because of his drinking problem that destroyed his original liver, he wasn't eligible to receive one from the hospital.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: If Reid hadn't made so many heart jokes, and if people hadn't been so bold as to call him 'heartless', rewatching his storyline would be significantly easier. There's also one scene that has Reid, after giving Luke a very passionate kiss, say "Life is short, it's very short sometimes." He dies pretty soon after this.
  • Heartwarming Moments: The episode dedicated to Nancy's actress Helen Wagner after her death.
    • Dusty finally getting a child of his own.
    • Katie names her child Jacob Bradley Snyder, after Jack and Brad.
  • He's Just Hiding!
  • Ho Yay/Foe Yay: Reid both invokes and recognises these tropes.
    Chris: Meet me in the men's room, okay?
    Reid: Wow, Doogie. That's an invitation I never expected from you.

    Reid to Chris: Alright, I'm not coming onto you, but drop your pants.
    Chris: Yeah, I'm thinking the lower lumbar area.
    Reid: Oh, rats.
    • Before the kiss in Dallas, Reid and Luke's interactions were a good, subtle example of the above tropes. The latter turned into the former once their involvement in the neurology wing came into play.
  • Informed Wrongness: Katie blames Henry for Brad's death, though if anyone is to blame it's Henry's mother and Katie's the one who decided to give her a chance. Many fans blamed Katie because she made the dumb decision to go to the warehouse and Brad went to rescue her. She doesn't talk to Henry for months and he's portrayed as being in the wrong, and when she betrays Henry later, she expects to be Easily Forgiven and she is.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Reid fits this one to a T.
  • Memetic Badass: Dusty Donovan's roundhouse kick.
  • Moment of Awesome: ATWT's lead actors, Michael Park and Maura West, in their last year at the daytime Emmy's.
  • Moral Event Horizon: As far as Henry is concerned Vienna crossed this when she told him that she had miscarried a baby that never existed so that she wouldn't get caught in her lie. Katie decides enough is enough and tells Henry the truth.
    • Katie deciding to get involved with this in the first place was this to a lot of fans.
    • Damian deciding to hide evidence indicating Holden was still alive so he could marry Lily.
    • It took Carly screaming at her young for her to realize she needed professional help for her alcoholism.
    • Julia kidnapping and raping Jack. Until then, she'd actually been pretty sympathetic, given how Jack jerked her around to the point of insanity.
  • One True Pairing: Luke/Noah, Carly/Jack, Holden/Lily, and other Super Couples.
  • Portmanteau Couple Name: Quite a few: Nuke (Luke and Noah), Carjack (Jack and Carly), LuRe (Luke and Reid), Peg or Maul (Paul and Meg), Lilden (Lily and Holden), Cake (Luke and Casey's fake relationship) etc., etc...
    • The aftermath, in which Reid gives Luke power of attorney and dies looks set to return to Tear Jerker status.
  • Retroactive Recognition:
  • Scapegoat Creator: Jean Passanante, one of the head writers, was blamed for the declining quality in writing near the end and getting the show cancelled. The previous cancellation of Another World was often cited as proof. Executive producer Chris Goutman got a bit of this too.
  • The Scrappy: For longtime fans, any new character who gets more screen time than their favorite character.
    • Special mention goes to Janet for getting loads of screentime for Character Shilling. Also the writers deciding to keep introducing more members of her annoying/uninteresting family and trying very hard to make the audience feel sorry for her, even when she was being a complete jerkass and selfish. CarJack shippers hated her the most. Her daughter Liberty too, for similar reasons, and because she was a huge jerkass to Parker.
      • The one thing that makes this trope stick for Janet though was her bachelorette party before marrying Jack. The women who throw the party are ladies who were not on good terms with Janet, and yet they showered Janet with attention like she was a longtime friend. Where do they throw the bachelorette party? At Carly's nightclub unannounced!! And even though Carly owns the nightclub, the women treat Carly like an intruder and angrily demand to know why she is there! It's her nightclub! That's why she's there!!
    • Katie to some, although she usually means well, she tends to get involved in the affairs of others and rarely gets called out.
  • Tearjerker: The last few episodes, particularly Luke's reaction to Reid's death.
    • Nancy's death, especially since the character had been on the show since the very beginning.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Mason and Richard, who could have been love interests for Noah. Mason was written out as soon as Noah found out about his feelings for him.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Julia Lindsay, initially the Betty to Jack's Archie and Carly's Veronica before the roles were reversed. After several months with Jack, she leaves him when she realizes that he's still in love with Carly. After Carly leaves Jack at the altar, he goes running after Julia—who rebuffs him as (a) she's trying to get on with her life, and (b) she (correctly) suspects he isn't over Carly. He spends months courting her and convincing her otherwise. She finally gives in, only to have Carly resurface on their wedding day, and for Jack to promptly begin mooning over her at every opportunity, ignoring his wife. . .and ignoring the fact that all this is slowly driving her insane. When she miscarries and he dumps her right afterwards, it's the straw that breaks the camel's back. Basically every terrible thing that Julia does afterwards is clearly made to make the viewer feel sorry for Jack and Carly, but given their abhorrent treatment of her, it has the opposite effect. Not until Julia kidnaps and rapes Jack (desperate to replace the child she miscarried) did viewers sympathies shift.
  • Wangst: Janet who whines whenever Jack pays attention to someone other than her.
  • What an Idiot!: Luke got jealous when his (gay) boyfriend spent time with his ex-girlfriend and retaliated by making out with his grandmother's husband.
    • Chris Hughes suspects he may have a heart condition, and because he didn't want his family to worry, ropes Reid (a neurosurgeon) into helping him out. Reid even tells him it's stupid and he should see a specialist about it, but he lets it get too far, and ends up needing a new heart.
    • When Dr. Oliver tells Noah not to bring Luke to the hospital because he's annoyed by him, Noah decides to break up with Luke, which caused Luke to think that Reid had a problem seeing the two of them together.
  • The Woobie: Luke. He's also the only character (beside Noah) who ends up alone in the Grand Finale. Despite being a very Nice Guy, he gets into horrible situations that are not his fault and became an alcoholic at 16.

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: