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YMMV / Pepper Ann

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  • Accidental Aesop:
    • In multiple episodes, Pepper Ann acts on a problem she encounters the way she saw someone on a TV show or movie handle a similar problem or just in general expects things to play out like a show on TV. Oftentimes, reality ensues and Pepper Ann either exacerbates the existing problem or creates a new one, and when asked what she has to say for herself, she admits something along the lines of: "I thought it would work because it did in [X TV show]!". It gives the show as a whole an underlying, recurring message that life is not like a TV show and trouble at school or with your friends are best solved by just talking things out or asking your friends, family, or someone else you trust for advice rather than relying on the elaborate Zany Schemes seen on TV that are not supposed to be treated as actual solutions to real-life problems anyway.
    • "Burn Hazelnut Burn" teaches us about the trials and tribulations that come with filmmaking. However, there is another lesson to be learned from this: While movies arenít easy to make, theyíre very profitable and sometimes, the people behind them arenít Doing It for the Art, but for fame and money, nor will they own up to their mistakes.
  • Anvilicious: "Dances with Ignorance" is very very heavy with its aesops of "Popular culture only shows you stereotypes of what a people are like", "Native Americans are not a cultural monolith", and "Don't try to 'impress' people with what you know when everything you learned was based off of stereotypes".
  • Adaptation Displacement: The original comic strips from YM Magazine seem to have vanished into oblivion.
  • Awesome Music:
    • Who's that girl? Whatís her name? Is she cool? Is she lame?
    • Every song in "You Oughta Be in Musicals", especially the one about chicken.
  • Diagnosed by the Audience:
    • From having a deep voice, fantasy sequences, talking to her reflection and the occasional Lack of Empathy, it appears that thereís something a with Pepper Ann.
    • Nicky has a sweet voice, perfectionistic nature, is very bright for her age, prone to mood swings, and tends to break down at even the slightest thing that throws her off, which may mean she is autistic or has OCD or BPD.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: There are many.
    • Fans tend to like Dieter, the funny kid from Germany, ja?
    • Brenda, Pepper Ann's kooky camp best friend. Being voiced by Tara Strong certainly helps.
    • Fuzzy, who is always voiced by Sue Rose whenever he appears.
    • Steve, P.A's adorable kitty cat.
    • Craig for being the most cool, friendly and laid-back character on the show. It helps that he seems to return Pepper's feelings.
    • Trinket is actually pretty popular with the fandom for being a Lovable Alpha Bitch.
  • Fanfic Fuel: Since itís the only one of the original three OSM shows not to get a feature film, just think of all the potential storylines for one.
  • Fanon: Pepper Annís real name being "Jennifer."
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • The episode "Impractical Jokes" shows Pepper Ann doing all sorts of increasingly mean-spirited jokes just because it's a joke. This became the catch phrase for a lot of increasing random prank videos/social experiments on YouTube, many of which were genuinely harmful and got the pranksters arrested or beat up by the victims.
    • The episode "Miss Moose" has Pepper Ann fearing that Moose will be discriminated against because people keep mistaking her for a boy. She even has a nightmare where Moose is dragged out of the girls' bathroom by security guards who think she's a boy. This has become legitimately upsetting due to all of the attempts to ban transgender people from public bathrooms, and Pepper Ann's fears of Moose being treated poorly because people make assumptions about her gender have only gotten more understandable.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Nicky told Pepper Ann how everyone forgot about Davey Baden burping up his ravioli during the Gettysburg Address... before they (and Milo) laugh at the memory. Nicky said that because she wanted to comfort Pepper Ann flashing the whole school... which is the one scene that people remember the most about the show.
  • Iron Woobie: Milo. No matter how many struggles he has or how many times he gets judged for his peculiar viewpoints, he takes it in stride and keeps his head up.
  • Jerkass Woobie:
    • Pepper Ann. She may be rude, insensitive and careless, but hardly anyone trusts her or wants her around, since she is always causing trouble. Plus, her teacher has it in for her. You canít really blame anyone for doubting her, but even when sheís not at fault, she still gets punished, making her appear to be a Designated Monkey.
    • Principal Hickey is strict and always jumps to conclusions, but heís simply doing his job and trying to keep his school from being brought down. Plus, with a student like Pepper Ann, youíd get easily irritable and suspicious, too.
  • Les Yay:
    • In "Greensleeves", when Pepper begs Nicky to help her trick the audience, she makes puppy dog eyes, bats her eyelashes and tells Nicky that she "wuvs" her.
    • Brenda is very fond of P.A, a little too fond. At the end of "Old Best Friend", when Brenda tells Peppy that she has found new friends, the latter acts as if she was just left at the altar.
  • LGBT Fanbase: With a predominantly female cast and episodes with gender-related issues, there are quite a few people in that community who enjoy the show.
  • Most Wonderful Sound: Pepper Ann, she's like one in a millYAAAAAAAAAAAAAN!
  • Nausea Fuel: Pink Eye Pete and his sore eye, and his complete obliviousness by using and trying to share objects that could easily spread it to others (the worst being a classroom microscope).
  • Nightmare Fuel: Invoked - Nicky and Becky are afraid of swans and don't know why. When their mother tosses out their old toys, a swan toy suddenly grows teeth and says "SWANNIE WANTS TO PLAY-AAAAAY!" in a threatening voice while its eyes turn red. While intended to be funny, it still scared plenty of viewers.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Pepper Ann's annoying camp friend Brenda only appears in "Old Best Friend", but given that she's voiced by Tara Strong going as Cloud Cuckoo Lander as she can - you definitely remember her.
  • Out of the Ghetto: Managed to break out of the Girl-Show Ghetto. Despite having a teenage girl as the lead character and dealing with a lot of girl issues, it still amassed a large following. Pepper Ann didn't just have one lead female character, as was normal during the 90s. There were several such as Nicky, Lydia, Moose and the various supporting players. Creator Sue Rose had this to say:
    ďGood, smart, funny shows with girl characters are something everyone can embrace. Pepper Ann is a kid who happens to be a girl. Gender doesnít have to enter into it.Ē
  • Popularity Polynomial: The cartoon faded from public consciousness after it ended, thanks to reruns disappearing in the late 2000s and Disney never giving it any sort of home media release. But in the late 2010s, it gradually became popular again, naturally once people started watching it for nostalgic purposes. There was significant cheering online when it was announced that the show would come to Disney+.
  • Retroactive Recognition: A non-acting example: Tom Warburton (who would later create Codename: Kids Next Door) was the lead character designer for this series. Watch a Pepper Ann episode and a Kids Next Door episode and you'll see the similarities, to the point that those who watch both shows would think that he produced Pepper Ann, which he didn't.
  • "Seinfeld" Is Unfunny: While not the first Slice of Life cartoon to show up in the 90s and early 2000s, a lot of the elements and plots it dealt with were quite new and fresh at the time. It can seem like a Cliché Storm to modern viewers, but it predated the likes of Lizzie McGuire or As Told by Ginger.
  • Signature Scene: The climax of "In Support Of", where Pepper Ann flashes the gym class in order to make sure her "support" was proper.
  • So Bad, It's Good: Not the show itself, but the theme song. It's so cheesy and yet, so darn catchy.
  • Trans Audience Interpretation: Some viewers tend to view Moose as a trans girl for looking masculine but having a feminine name and going by "she/her" pronouns, along with an episode where P.A. tries making her more girly. Some also headcanon her as non-binary.
  • Unintentional Period Piece:
    • In "Sani-Paper", Zaire is mentioned. This was a Congolese state that collapsed in 1997 (ironically the year the show premiered) and went back to being the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
    • "P.A.'s Pop Fly" has a gag in which Pepper Ann waves a red laser pointer in front of a movie screen, a common gag in the 1990s.
    • "My Mother, My Self" has a brief reference to the first Men in Black film when Moose dresses as an agent, during the montage.
  • Values Resonance:
    • Even when it's been off the air for twenty years, the show has been praised for its handling of feminist issues that are still relevant today. Much like everything groundbreaking from the 90s, everything that was new in this show has been copied and improved upon.
    • The episode "Dances with Ignorance" delivers multiple aesops about stereotypes, especially towards Native Americans, that are still relevant over twenty years later.
    • The episode "Impractical Jokes" as well delivers a very good aesop that the "Just Joking" Justification is very harmful. (See Harsher in Hindsight)
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: Itís easy to to mistake Moose for a boy, even though Moose is referred to as "she" and by her real name "Margaret Rose" multiple times throughout the series, and there was a whole episode focused around P.A. trying to make Moose more girly. This confusion sometimes gets lampshaded too: one time Principal Hickey couldn't tell if she was P.A.'s sister or brother, so he just called her "your Moose." Even their own grandfather didnít realize Moose was a girl until it was casually mentioned at Thanksgiving dinner.
  • The Woobie: Nicky, who is the unfavorite in her family, gets taken for granted by her friends and always falling victim to Pepper Annís schemes.
  • Woolseyism: In the Italian dub of the episode "Dances with Ignorance", the reference to The Lone Ranger Pepper makes at one point is replaced with one to Tex Willer.