- Contractual Purity: Audrina Patridge and Lauren Conrad, especially after rumors circulated about an alleged sex tape Conrad had made.
- Critical Research Failure: The stock footage of Didsbury in Greater Manchester and the M60 motorway.
- Escapist Character: Stephen or Lauren
- Family-Unfriendly Aesop: It happens to Lauren Conrad and Casey Reinhardt a few times.
- Fanon Discontinuity: most fans avoid season 3, and the later series Newport Harbor entirely, as they don't feature any of the people from the first two seasons.
- It's Popular, Now It Sucks!
- More Popular Spinoff: The Hills. Not only was it a bigger ratings hit for MTV it became somewhat of a pop culture icon thanks to the tabloid-worthy antics of the stars.
- Narm: Many times over; the episode where Christina (a reverend's daughter who sings in choirs) is invited to New York for an important theatre audition and botches it so badly that she doesn't get called back is an early highlight.
- Nightmare Fuel: Has happened on very rare occasions. Its follow-ups contain some doses of it.
- Replacement Scrappy: The whole cast of season 3.
- Retroactive Recognition: Chase Adams worked at a surf shop?
- Heidi Montag shows up a bit in some episodes, years before The Hills started.
- Second Season Downfall: Newport Harbor sets up and resolves an entire set of relationships within the span of a single year of high school. It was actually a marked step up from Laguna. Unfortunately, it subsequently ceased to air on MTV.
- Many fans avoid season 3 entirely, as none of the original cast from the first two seasons is there.
- Self-Parody: The writers of the MTV Canada Laguna Beach Aftershow clearly knew when it launched that the series was a target of derision from viewers, and so they mocked the worst elements of the episodes (including the teenagers' stupidity and the questionable decisions made by the show's writers to beef up the drama) in every episode, as well as produced a series of Stupid Statement Dance Mix videos that ridiculed foolish comments made by the cast.
- Surprisingly Improved Sequel: some fans prefer season 2 over season 1, despite far less screentime on Lauren and Steven, and a bigger focus on Kristin Cavallari.
- Values Dissonance: the Slut-Shaming of Kristin, especially in the Cabo episode, definitely comes off poorly nowadays, especially when many of the guys were acting similar in Cabo.
- What an Idiot!: Morgan applying only to her dream school, Brigham Young University, and no other school. She gets rejected. You fill in the blanks.
YMMV / Laguna Beach