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  • Accidental Aesop:
    • From "The Witch": know when your fears are rational and when they aren't. Kaisa ought to have been more scared of the Void than about facing her teacher.
    • From The Fifty-Year Night: don't touch your neighbors' mail.
  • Adorkable: Hilda is a bit socially awkward, yet she's a sweet, lovable nerd. It's seen best when Trevor teaches her how to ring-and-run. Hilda can't do it and instead tells the old lady who answered the door that her flowers look pretty. Tildy laughs and calls her a sweet child.
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  • Alternate Aesop Interpretation: The main Aesop of "The Fifty-Year Night" is that you can't hold onto your mistakes forever, as seen when Mr. Ostenfeld and Tildy both reveal they used magic to relive the night they danced together, regretting that neither of them stayed to exchange names or phone numbers. Given, however, that Tildy and Mr. Ostenfeld were living in the same city and relatively nearby, however, it's shown that if they had wanted to find each other, they could have. Tildy lets him go when the timeline fixes, telling Hilda she's meddled enough and should have thought of finding Mr. Ostenfeld in her middle-aged years. The alternate Aesop seems to be, "Rather than ruminate over your biggest mistake, do what's in your control to fix them."
  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Erik Ahlberg is subject to this in season 2. Despite revealing to Hilda that he's not trying to make Trolberg safer but to boost his own image, by endangering the citizens, she can't find any dirt on him. The Rat King says that as thanks for the rotten cod sandwich, he saw Erik had a clean record. Was Erik once a good guy who became disillusioned, or is he that good at covering his tracks?
  • Angst? What Angst?:
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    • David is beheaded twice during The Eternal Warriors and you wouldn't know it from the episodes after the incident. Subverted in that Sigurd's healing potion seems to have erased the memories of his adventures with the Vikings.
    • Hilda has this for most of her adventures, with a few exceptions. The first episode has a troll chasing her for dangling a bell around its nose, and she describes it as "traumatic" but moves on. Alfur even lampshades it in season two after a time-traveling adventure goes wrong, pointing out they saw themselves die, twice. Yet Hilda is more wistful and considering it a productive day.
  • Awesome Art: The comic already had a very lovely art style with plenty of Scenery Porn, but the Netflix adaptation adds a new layer to it with fluid and beautiful animation.
  • Base-Breaking Character: Frida. Some see her arc towards the end of Season 1 as a welcome change of pace, giving attention to make her more than just "Hilda's friend", but many found it to be unnecessary and flimsily-written while also making her out to be nothing more than a petty, selfish brat with an inability to get over herself, up to the point where she pushes away her own friends. Others could see what they were trying to do, but felt her callous treatment of Hilda and David, coupled with her brief Face–Heel Turn, warranted a more layered apology than "I was acting like an idiot". A third party argues that her parents are the cause of her attitude due to their constant demands of perfection from their daughter.
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  • Cant Unhear It: Read the graphic novels and/or the tie-in books, and try not to imagine the characters with their voices from the Netflix series.
  • Creepy Cute:
    • Despite their creepy Glowing Eyes and association with soul-stealing magic, the Tide Mice still manage to be quite cute with their small, round body shape and facial features. It helps that they like Jorts chips.
    • Troll Hilda in her first appearance is meant to be Body Horror given she's changed species and woken up in an unfamiliar place. She is also kind of cute despite the dire circumstances.
  • Designated Villain: The Trollberg Safety Patrol during Season 1. While their efforts to capture The Black Hound are depicted (at least by Hilda) as being wrong, despite the fact the Hound was responsible for eating (Albeit, not killing) 3 people, and had already caused massive amounts of destruction. It lessens in Season 2, wherein the Safety Patrol comes under leadership that's pointedly cruel to the magical communities within and out of Trolberg and not putting people's safety first.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: Judging by the fanfics, more than a few fans like for Trevor to redeem himself for the events in episode 3, mostly so he can become Hilda's friend, or more.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • The Bellkeeper has some fans that like him, mostly due his design and the fact he's one of the few competent adults and the fact, he aided Hilda to turn-off the mechanical bellkeeper. Also, unlike other members of the safety patrol, he's actually nice to Hilda and listens to her.
    • Kaisa the librarian gathered quite a few fans due to the mystery surrounding her and the fact that she had been very helpful to Hilda, as well as her interesting, witch-y design.
    • Tildy of season #2 has been similarly well-received, not only for being the former mentor of Kaisa, but for being a sweet, understanding Cool Old Lady who offers to teach Frida magic.
  • Evil Is Sexy: The Marra are a notable case of being the Token Evil Teammate among the supernatural characters, being effectively sociopaths that relish in their Nightmare Weaver powers. They are also a notable example of Humanoid Abominations that look like cute and generally attractive older girls, whose status as The Corrupter involves deliberately tempting others. All these traits combined have resulted in plenty of fans seeing them as quite alluring, especially since them taking on the forms of teenagers makes it less squicky than if they took on kid-like appearances similar to the main trio.
  • Friendly Fandoms:
    • With Gravity Falls. Both are series about a magical woodland filled with Magical Realism and Urban Fantasy. Hilda's quirky but fantastical storytelling method has attracted many fans of the former series that thought nothing like that would ever be made again. To add to this, Season 2 for each show also incorporates Cerebus Syndrome, with a few Gut Punch moments.
    • Various fans of this show and Gravity Falls also migrate well with those from Over the Garden Wall due to the same magical woodland and fantasy found in the show.
    • Fans from Game of Thrones have become interested in the series due to Hilda's voice actor being Bella "Lyanna Mormont" Ramsey.
    • Many fans of Thomas the Tank Engine love Hilda because they share voice talent, such as Rasmus Hardiker, Rob Rackstraw, and Lucy Montgomery. In fact, Chapter 1 of Season 2 features a shout-out to the show, with a locomotive similar to Edward the Blue Engine making an appearance.
  • Iron Woobie: Hilda goes through one hell of a Trauma Conga Line and then some during the last five episodes of Season 1. From her falling out with Frida, discovering her idol to be a morally bankrupt fraud and almost dying afterwards, getting trapped in a sentient cabin, learning that Frida's ditched her and David for an older girl who turns out to be affiliated with the Marra, her efforts to help Tontu landing her in hot water with Johanna, and fearing what Johanna will think once she learns she hasn't actually managed to earn any badges, you wouldn't blame her for coming out a little worse for wear - and yet by the end of it all, she seems to remain just as intrepid as she ever was.
  • Genius Bonus:
    • The portrayal of the Thunderbird as a raven. Ravens are a prominent bird in Native American mythology, which the Thunderbird originated from.
    • In "The Draugen", a construction worker tells Hilda she has to take "Kittelsen Road" to get to the docks. Norwegian artist Theodor Kittelsen is famed for his portrayal of trolls and ghouls from Scandinavian folklore, including The Draugen.
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Frida becomes this in the last five episodes of season 1. Between lashing out at Hilda and David when she lost her perfection all thanks to her Nisse stealing her favorite book and befriending the Marra out of desperation for friends only to get betrayed by them just to save themselves from the Black Hound, you couldn't help but feel bad for her.
    • Hilda becomes this in season 2. Constantly keeping Johanna in the dark of her adventures and lying to her about them, she ended up being grounded for the first time in her life when her recent adventure with the Kraken has been exposed. Between getting into arguments with her in the time travel episode and the season 2 finale, she ended up getting better in the latter upon seeing Johanna breaking down and being trapped in the troll cave with no way out.
  • Just Here for Godzilla: Several Game of Thrones fans have flocked to this show purely for the fact that Bella Ramsey is in it. 
  • Moe: Hilda herself, being an adorable, friendly, and cute little girl. Her pet, Twig, comes in as a close second.
  • Like You Would Really Do It:
    • Hilda's Disney Death in "The Storm". Yes, we have absolute reason to believe you'd kill off the main protagonist of your show... with only three episodes of your season to go. Your first season, no less.
    • Did you really think that David would stay dead in Season 2?
    • Raise your hand if you thought Twig was gone for good at the climax of The Deerfox.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • Victoria Van Gale crossed this when she kidnapped a baby Weather Spirit in an attempt to attract and control the spirits like it. To prove that she hasn't changed in season 2, she reveals she's trying to access Nowhere Space to improve the population crisis, without any regard for why the Nisse keep it closed to outsiders. She nearly causes the city to collapse inward. To top it all off, she kidnaps Frida for taking too long to choose a book and not leaving in time.
    • Erik Ahlbeg crosses it when revealing to Hilda that he used the information in her essay not to make Trolberg safer, but to attract trolls and make them angry so as to get great photo ops and glory. From his tone, he hasn't even notified Greta about this and thinks that because Hilda is a Cloud Cuckoo Lander and a child, no one will believe her if she exposes him. This makes the normally Friend to All Living Things Hilda determined to find evidence to take him down and reveal he's a fraud.
  • Ships That Pass in the Night: Johanna/Kaisa seems to be popular on certain fanfiction sites, despite a relative lack of interaction.
  • Shocking Moments: The season 2 finale ends with a Sudden Downer Ending where Hilda is transported back to the Stone Forest and turned into a troll.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • Trevor has only appeared in about three episodes, tops, as someone who Hilda tried to befriend but she came to sever ties with because he was cruel to animals and mean to other kids. He also knows that she's involved in some "magic" if not witchcraft. Yet in season 2 he only appears once with his mother to toss snowballs at the Sparrow Scouts and for the Yule Lads to pinpoint as good meat for Gryla's soup.
    • The Great Raven (save for a cameo in "The Replacement") and the Marra sit out the entirety of Season 2. For Raven, it's disappointing enough considering that he doesn't even show up in "The Stone Forest" (which in the comics he had a major role in), but imagine how the Marra could have played into Frida's arc as a witch-in-training, especially as they trying to enlist her into their own group of the supernatural? It could be explained in that the Great Raven explained in his first appearance that he only migrates in Trolberg but he doesn't live there.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • While it does lead to bouts of significant character development, the aftermath of Frida's falling out with Hilda and David is mostly pushed to the sidelines, and the entire conflict itself is resolved pretty underwhelmingly. Apart from Hilda's attempt to find a replacement copy of Frida's book, it isn't even brought up in "The House of the Woods", which would have made its message about finding the good in a new home, even if it seems minimal, even stronger.
    • In "The Fifty-Year Night," thanks to Timey-Wimey Ball, Mr. Ostenfeld in the prime timeline ends up never obsessively returning to the night where he met a younger Tildy. As a result, he's happier. Tildy also refuses to reveal to Mr. Ostenfeld who she is, telling Hilda the time for rekindling their relationship has long past and Tildy made a mess of things already by meddling. It would be sweet to see their romance start anew especially when the alternate timeline showed them Happily Married and growing old together.
    • Hilda attempting to find anything that could potentially discredit Erik Ahlberg is set up to be a recurring plot thread throughout Season 2... and then following a very brief mention in "The Witch" (the third episode of the season), it's never brought up again.
    • With how the ending of Season 1 implied Jellybean and his owner settled down in the wilderness, it would have been nice to see Hilda and Johanna come across them in "The Deerfox", especially when one thinks about its theme regarding pets and separation from them.
  • Toy Ship: Naturally, considering it's a show starring kid protagonists. Popular fan couples include David and Hilda, David and Frida, and Trevor and Hilda. Hilda and Frida saw a rise in popularity during season 2.
  • Uncanny Valley: Intentionally invoked at the end of Season 2. The troll baby known as Baba is a Moe in troll form, but not so much in human form. She retains her facial characteristics and The Unintelligible Baby Talk, with the nose and flat mouth. This freaks out Johanna, along with the realization that the troll baby must have replaced Hilda and demands to know where her daughter is.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: There has been quite some debate about the gender of the Nisse originally living in Hilda's home, who eventually turns out to be The Black Hound's owner. The graphic novels and animated series make no mention of whether this nisse is male or female, but female seems the most likely due to its lack of body hair; the only other hairless Nisse seen in the graphic novels and animated series is this nisse's mother. Luke Pearson also stated that the nisse is female. In the novelization "Hilda and the Nowhere Space" however, the nisse is explicitly referred to as male.


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