- Alternate Character Interpretation: Ernesto's father, Esteban. At times, he may seem to border Evil Patriarch levels. At times, he seems to just be grumpy. Besides Ernesto, he is without a doubt the most conflicted character within the series.
- Base-Breaking Character: Ernesto. A lot of people dislike him due to his toxic friendship with Héctor and being the catalyst for a lot of Héctor's poor decisions and darker moments, even if he didn't want that to happen. However, some find him a Jerkass Woobie, due to his horrible upbringing and his few Pet the Dog moments towards Héctor.
- Draco in Leather Pants: Averted. While Ernesto is young, slightly nicer and he seems to care about Héctor in his own way, he's still portrayed as a sociopath that is willing to use lies to manipulate others and even brutal methods to severely harm anyone who stands in his way, just like his canon counterpart.
- Harsher in Hindsight: The whole fic in a shellnut. Also, to the events of the sequel Down to Dust.
- Ho Yay: Héctor's words after Ernesto is conscripted "Revolution" have a vibe of this.
- The thought of having to go on without his best friend - the thought the world could even keep spinning without him in it - was simply absurd to him. Nothing would be the same ever again. Even music would lose its magic.
- Moe: 2-year-old Héctor is adorable. Also, when he falls in love with Imelda.
- Nightmare Fuel: Ernesto's prophetic nightmare in "Presagio".
- Also, when Imelda and Ernesto murder the government soldiers in "Revolution".
- Unintentionally Unsympathetic:
- Ernesto's resentment of his alcoholic father Esteban and preferring to hang out at the Rivera house to avoid his abuse is supposed to be sympathetic, but most of the time he comes across as a Wangsty, entitled brat, especially since despite of his shortcomings, Esteban tries to fix their relationship while Ernesto continually rebukes him.
- Imelda in "Revolution". Being upset and angry over her father leaving the family to help the revolutionaries only to be killed for it? Completely understandable. Chewing out Ernesto for saying he doesn't miss Esteban, who's stated to be an abusive drunkard and is implied to beat Ernesto? Not so much.
YMMV / The Heaven and Earth Series