- Alternate Character Interpretation: Did Rachel Turner really love Neal, or was that all part of the con? Was she really preparing to cut him in, or was she just playing to the cameras? How much of her later darkness is who she really is, and how much is it the venom of a woman scorned?
- Author's Saving Throw: Fans hated the new Season 3 opening sequence so much that the original version was reinstated (slightly extended to reflect the expanded cast) almost immediately.
- Awesome Music: "How You Like Me Now?" during the climax season 2's mid season finale.
- Ensemble Dark Horse: Diana, who was only in the pilot, but was brought back as a full time regular in season two because of her popularity.
- Foe Yay
- Between Neal and Sara the insurance bounty hunter. It blossomed into a make out session during a blackout, then blossomed further into intense awkwardness.
- Between Caffrey and pretty much all of the female criminals. Some of the male ones too.
- Between Neal and Keller. More so on Keller's side than Neal's, since whenever they meet up Keller always reminds Neal of the "good old days" and tries to convince Neal to go back to them.
- Between Diana and Abigail which makes it difficult since Abigail's an active crook and Diana's undercover in order to catch her. Plus, Diana broke up with Christy so the attraction comes at a poor time.
- Hilarious in Hindsight: In the seventh episode of the first season, they catch a lackey because, upon exiting a secret tunnel, he turns to look at a girl and gets caught on camera. We find out the meaning of the following exchange a few seasons later when we learn exactly how Peter caught Neal the first time. The affected casualness of the last two lines really sells it. And it even works at the time because Neal always, always hits on every woman in sight. Successfully.Peter: Guy steals three point two million in diamonds and we get him because he can't resist a pretty face.
Neal: Happens to the best of us.
Peter: [pointed glance]
Peter: ... You know what.
Neal: No I don't.
Peter: Yes you do.
- Ho Yay: Oh yes. There's a reason the fandom's main ship is Neal/Peter/Elizabeth.
- Magnificent Bastard: Neal, Peter & Elizabeth. Curtis Hagen even calls Neal a 'particular kind of bastard' in the pilot.
- Mozzie. And part of it is the skill with which he makes it look like he doesn't know what he's doing.
- Narm Charm: Those hilariously ham-fisted promotions for Ford.
- Never Live It Down: In "Forging Bonds", Burke becomes the butt of a number of jokes after inadvertently meeting Neal and letting him get away, and he keeps the lollipop Neal gave him as an eternal reminder of that fact. A more humorous one would be when Neal distributes pictures of Burke's mustache to his entire department.
- Nightmare Fuel: The season 5 episode "Controlling Interest" has a psychologist who manipulates her patients into committing crimes. That's bad enough on it's own, but it gets really bad when Neal, while undercover as a patient, finds out he's been Drugged. You know things are bad when even Neal Caffrey is caught off guard.
- One-Scene Wonder: In "Judgement Day", Bosch of Sterling-Bosch, who helps save Neal's bacon.
- OT3: The fandom is fairly satisfied. Also averts Die for Our Ship, mostly due to Elizabeth's sheer awesomeness. The show itself also heaps piping-hot servings of OT3 subtext onto our plates.
- Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped: Most of the later Season 3 episodes have not been subtle in stating that despite the whole ankle bracelet thing, Neal's currently living the good life. He's no longer running from the FBI, has a job, a permanent home, and lots of new friends. Yet he's still willing to throw it all away for what he thinks he wants. In his own words, Neal describes the con as an addiction or a rush. Only hitting rock bottom has a chance of changing someone from that life... and he (again in his own words) hasn't hit rock bottom.
- Special Effects Failure:
- The end of the first season finale, when Kate's plane explodes.
- The shows attempt at hiding Tiffani Thiessen's pregnancy early in the second season was by shooting all of her scenes in front of an obvious green screen.
- It's painfully obvious that the shot of the Eiffel Tower in the final episode is fake.
- Stoic Woobie: From the slight indications you get, her missing sister seems to have really screwed her up, but Sara is one of the most composed characters and sounds matter-of-fact even when she's being vulnerable.
YMMV / White Collar