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->'''''Hounddog:''' Don't remember it by title? Don't worry, neither did we, and now the Cracked IT guys are asking why we have "Dakota Fanning rape" in our Google cache.''
-->--'''Website/{{Cracked}}.com''', [[http://www.cracked.com/article_15876_5-ways-hollywood-tricks-you-into-seeing-bad-movies_p3.html#ixzz2B4fmsL2e 5 Ways Hollywood Tricks You Into Seeing Bad Movies]]

There are some well-known works that gathered controversy throughout the years, and there are also famously controversial works in which the controversy, whether rightful or not, would overshadow most other aspects. Which isn't to say that works in the latter category have no other redeeming factor, just that most people would know little else aside from the controversial aspects.

Bad reviews alone do not make a controversial moment, and in fact some works can be well-regarded by critics and those who watched, read or played the work, and not all works listed here are either [[SoBadItsGood laughably bad]] or just [[Darthwiki/SoBadItsHorrible downright terrible]]. Plot-related twists are generally not what makes up the category either, even if such cases are subjective and arguable. The major qualifier is that the works would be known beyond the fans of a particular genre that there's little knowledge of some other parts of a work to the general public.

Controversies can be a result of the following:
* MoralGuardians (be they politicians or groups)
* UnfortunateImplications
* Public cat-fights between the creator and the media, critics, public, or all three (such as DearNegativeReader rants).
* Deceptive or offensive marketing

See also ColbertBump, DancingBear, JustHereForGodzilla, MainstreamObscurity, ComplainingAboutShowsYouDontWatch, and WatchItForTheMeme. Compare and contrast NoSuchThingAsBadPublicity, and ControversyProofImage. When a whole genre gets held under controversy, it would become TheNewRockAndRoll.

[[RuleOfCautiousEditingJudgement Please be cautious about editing this page]]. It isn't supposed to imply that there's no other redeeming factor for the works on this list. It also doesn't necessarily mean that the creators ''meant'' their work to be controversial.
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!!Examples

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Anime/Manga ]]

* The manga ''Manga/HououGakuenMisoragumi'' barely made a blip in the US. But what was the general fan response? Absolute hatred. Both from the fans and the English publishers. Why? Because it's a manga that takes the CureYourGays route FAR too seriously, bringing along with it a whole mountain of ValuesDissonance regarding lesbianism and gender roles. The English publishers treat it as an OldShame and don't ever bring it up anymore.
* ''Kodomo no Jikan'' was licensed but never released in America due to its lolicon overtones.
* ''Lotte no Omocha'', for the same reasons as Kojika - the female protagonist is a succubus? Uh, ok. The female protagonist is also '''10 years old''' and will die if she doesn't drink [[UnusualEuphemism Life Essence]]? DudeNotFunny!

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Fanfiction ]]

* The ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' fanfiction ''Fanfic/TheConversionBureau'' and its ''numerous'' [[RecursiveFanfiction spinoffs]] are most well known for their misanthropy, UnfortunateImplications and the ''intense'' {{Flame War}}s that often accompany these fics.
** The majority of Chatoyance's stories are overshadowed by three ''very'' controversial works: "Ten Minutes: Aftermath", a FixFic that was interpreted (due to how Chatoyance posted a link right on the original author's comments page) as a [[TakeThat middle finger]] to the fans of "Ten Minutes"; ''Around the Bend'', a [[AuthorTract sc]][[FanWank re]][[FanonDiscontinuity ed]] against Season Two; "New Universe Three: The Friendship Virus", a InNameOnly ''Conversion Bureau'' fic that veered straight into UnfortunateImplications with its overtly misandric messages.
*** More generally, her stories are most well known for their ''extreme'' misanthropy.
* ''Fanfic/MyLittleUnicorn'' is remembered more for the author's [[{{Wangst}} wangsting and whining about MLP:FIM]] and how bad it is than the fact that it's a fan fic at all.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Film ]]

* Everyone will agree that ''Film/AClockworkOrange'' is a controversial film. However in the United Kingdom its reputation is more legendary because the film was banned there from 1971 until Kubrick's death in 1999. Therefore, its controversial reputation remained far more intact than in other countries.
* ''Film/BaiseMoi'' was banned in France because of its unsimulated sex scenes in the context of two female rape victims having revenge on their aggressors. The debate whether this is nothing less but cheap exploitation, or not, is still going on.
* ''WesternAnimation/BatmanBeyondReturnOfTheJoker'' is remembered for two controversial scenes: the Bonk vs. SelfDemonstrating/TheJoker scene [[spoiler:in which the latter kills the former with the BangFlagGun]], and the entire flashback scene, with the very noteworthy part near the end [[spoiler:in which Robin does the same thing to the Joker]]. Even before the film was released to video and DVD in 2000, movie companies were coming under heavy criticism for violence in films during the fallout of the UsefulNotes/{{Columbine}} shootings that had happened over a year ago, and WB felt pressured and afraid that MoralGuardians and {{Media Watchdog}}s would object that the movie would be a repeat of Columbine. As a result, the original release date (Halloween 2000) was postponed, and the film heavily edited and toned down for release on December 12. But even then, the {{Bowdlerise}}d version (especially with [[spoiler:the Joker's death scene changed to a {{Family Unfriendly|Death}} HighVoltageDeath]]) didn't help matters, but only caused unrest among many Franchise/{{Batman}} fans that lasted for over a year. That unrest thankfully quelled down when the film developers still retained the original version in shelves and eventually released it on DVD as "the original, uncut version" under the PG-13 rating on April 23, 2002 (just three days after the third anniversary of the Columbine tragedy) following an online petition to have it released. The same uncut version would be digitally enhanced and released on Blu-ray nine years later, just as it was intended to be before the backlash, as a way of ensuring that no tragedy such as Columbine would ever happen again.
* ''Film/TheBirthOfANation'' is a milestone in the history of cinema as an art form, pioneering many techniques that would shape motion pictures for decades to come. Unfortunately, it's also a film that glorifies the UsefulNotes/KuKluxKlan and has white people in {{blackface}} portraying all African Americans as either savage criminals or lazy idiots, and it has been cited as a key influence in [[TheRedStapler the revival of the Klan]] in the 1910s and '20s. This aspect has overshadowed most of its historical significance.
* ''Film/TheBrownBunny'' is a film known mostly for an unsimulated oral sex scene, being booed harshly at the Cannes Film Festival, and the subsequent media catfight between Creator/RogerEbert and the director. The film was later ReCut and given a wide release, and Ebert gave the recut a three star review.
* Interestingly, it didn't happen with ''Film/InTheRealmOfTheSenses''; much like ''Film/TheBrownBunny'' the film has many unsimulated sex scenes including oral and it ''also'' received harsh criticism at the Cannes Film Festival, but ultimately it was not overshadowed by it.
* ''Film/CannibalHolocaust'' was notorious to a degree that it forced director Ruggero Deodato and the actors to explain that nobody died in production and the gore was just special effects. There is still a great deal of controversy to this day relating to animal cruelty, such as an infamous scene in which an actual live turtle is brutally decapitated and eviscerated onscreen. Seven animals were killed during the film's production. Although the director himself condemned his past actions and seems genuinely regretful, many people are turned off by the presence of actual animal deaths onscreen.
* ''Film/CloudAtlas'' will probably be remembered more for the controversy over the decision to have white actors appear in YellowFace than for its story.
* The release of ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises'', the final film of ''Film/TheDarkKnightSaga'', was stained by a mass shooting at its Aurora, CO premiere, with the shooter even identifying himself as the Joker.
* Ken Russell's ''Film/TheDevils'' (1971) has been banned, censored and re-cut in so many countries that several different versions of different lenghts exist. Its offensive blasphemous content has brought more attention than the actual picture itself.
* ''{{Film/Eraserhead}}'' - Two words: the baby. Primarily because no one associated with the film (ESPECIALLY David Lynch) cares to discuss what the baby was made out of.
** "They're not even sure it IS a baby..."
* ''Film/GangsterSquad'' ended up having some scenes reshot because a theater shooting that occurred in the film resembled the real life 2012 theater massacre that had just occurred in Aurora, Colorado. Yet even with the reshoot the film as whole was deemed to be so violent that it was still hard to forget the parallel with Aurora. It didn't help that the film was released about a month after the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.
* ''Film/HoundDog'', as quoted on the page description above, was infamously referred to as the Dakota Fanning rape film by critics and moviegoers alike.
* Creator/MartinScorsese's ''Film/TheLastTemptationOfChrist'' had sparked protests from religious groups worldwide, including the infamous attack at a Paris cinema where the use of Molotov cocktails injured 13 patrons and brought the theater under heavy repairs for the next three years.
** Likewise, ''Film/TaxiDriver'' is good enough to stand on its own merits, but it will forever be linked to John Hinckley and his attempted assassination of RonaldReagan.
* ''{{Film/Melancholia}}'' gets remembered more for the infamous interview of its director Creator/LarsVonTrier about how he "was a Nazi", and then how that got him banned from Cannes.
* ''Film/MontyPythonsLifeOfBrian'' was considered by the troupe to be their best movie, but the protests surrounding its supposed heresy will always limit its popularity.
** At the time of release, protests by religious groups were described by the Pythons as the best publicity they could have hoped for. It really raised a lot of awareness of the film's existence, and led to a much higher box office taking. NoSuchThingAsBadPublicity.
* Similarly, Creator/MelGibson's ''Film/ThePassionOfTheChrist'' arguably owes its record-breaking success with audiences who weren't devout Christians to this very trope. [[ItWasHisSled Practically everyone in America already knew the story]] (unlike ''The Last Temptation'', the plot itself wasn't revisionist in any way), so the most interesting two things about the movie for most people were that it was ridiculously violent for a "Christian" film (as well as being probably the only R-rated film in history that Christian leaders ''urged'' their congregations to see) and that it was that rare post-1945 Western film with (supposed) anti-Semitism as part of the subject matter. Cool.
* Disney's ''Disney/SongOfTheSouth'', like the stories it is based on, is remembered more for the UnfortunateImplications of a {{happ|inessInSlavery}}y black ex-slave living in the American South than for anything other than, perhaps "Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah".
* ''Film/TriumphOfTheWill'' and ''Film/{{Olympia}}'' by Creator/LeniRiefenstahl are visually impressive documentaries which were way ahead of their time from a technical standpoint. However, it's hard to praise these films because they were intended as Nazi propaganda. Riefenstahl was never able to distance herself from all the controversy surrounding these films and herself.
* ''Film/TwilightZoneTheMovie'' will be forever tainted by the helicopter crash death of Vic Morrow and two child actors during filming.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Literature ]]

* ''Literature/AlfiesHome'' is a children's book...about [[CureYourGays curing homosexuality]], arguing that [[UnfortunateImplications dysfunctional families cause kids to be gay because they lack the love from a parental figure]], but it's MUCH more infamous for a [[WhatDoYouMeanItsForKids blatant depiction of a child getting molested by his]] CreepyUncle, who is also a KarmaHoudini.
* ''Literature/FannyHill'' is well known for having been a subject of obscenity tests and for having been banned in America from inception until a 1966 Supreme Court case ruled that the book has redeeming social value. When it was published in 1748, it got the author arrested on obscenity charges.
* ''Literature/{{Lolita}}'' is unfortunately more famous for the controversy that surrounds it than the actual content and quality of the novel: Vladimir Nabokov went through many publishers who refused to publish it, and after it was published, it was banned in many places for being "pornographic" or "an instruction manual for paedophilia" (which it is not). Even for people who aren't familiar with the history of the book, a lot of the covers/jackets make it look like erotica.
* The children's book ''The Pet Goat'' probably wouldn't have an article on [[{{Wiki/Wikipedia}} The Other Wiki]] if it weren't for [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Pet_Goat#George_W._Bush:_9.2F11 the fact that George W. Bush was reading it as he was notified of 9/11]], and the subsequent debate over whether he should have left or kept reading like he did.
* ''Literature/{{Rage}}'' by Creator/StephenKing is probably best known for being King's OldShame after several school shootings were possibly inspired by the novel. King has let the work fall out of print.
* ''Literature/TheSatanicVerses'' by Salman Rushdie is recalled more for the ensuing fatwa declared on the author by the Ayatollah Khomeini, and for the fallout from that incident, than for the novel itself.
* ''Literature/TheTurnerDiaries'', a white supremacist novel by William L. Pierce, is best known for its association with [=Timothy McVeigh=], the Oklahoma City Bomber.
* The Uncle Remus stories are a group of actual fables told by slaves and former slaves in the American South, making them a valuable cultural resource. However, though once popular, they are now nearly unknown. Compiler and editor Joel Chandler Harris' fictional character who tells the stories, Uncle Remus, was written as an elderly ex-slave who was basically content to continue to work for a white family. The implied racism is now almost all that is known of the stories. The fables themselves, taken out of the Remus context, are stories about animals using their wiles to trick each other, and man, in order to survive. Unlike Aesop's fables, they are not meant to be morally instructive, but are a commentary on man resorting to animal-like behaviors in desperate circumstances.
* ''Literature/UncleTomsCabin'' had a controversy that the publication of this book inspired over slavery, particularly in the years leading up to TheAmericanCivilWar. However, few people have actually read the book, even those who (inaccurately) slur supposedly servile African Americans as "Uncle Toms".
** The slur is more a reference to the minstrel shows "inspired by" the book frequently put on after the AmericanCivilWar, which inverted the message of the original novel and completely changed Tom's characterisation.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Live Action TV ]]

* ''Film/{{Ghostwatch}}'', the one-off HalloweenSpecial drama shown on BBC 1 in 1992, is better known for the controversy caused when a sizable chunk of the viewing audience thought it was real and the ensuing argument over whether this was the creators' desired effect than the fact that it's a damn fine ghost story. It makes frequent appearances on 'Underrated Horror Films' listicles as a result.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Music ]]

* IgorStravinsky 's TheRiteOfSpring is universally praised for being a milestone in classical music and music in general. Yet the infamous story of the riots during its premier will forever remain associated with the piece.
* Milli Vanilli was once a popular group, but after a scandal broke out revealing the fact that they playbacked all their songs they became a universal shame. To this day nobody in their right mind can admit liking their hits without addressing the playback scandal.
* Music/TheSexPistols are mostly known for trying to play "God Save The Queen" from a barge during the Queen's Jubilee after being prohibited from playing the song on land. Much of the [[NoSuchThingAsBadPublicity bad press was intentional.]]
** As was the bad press they received for "Belsen Was a Gas", which was more of the DudeNotFunny variety.
* BlackMetal is mostly associated with crimes committed by a few of it's members. This was not helped by said members exaggerating their own acts. As noted by Lords of Chaos in reference to an article in Kerrang:
--> Like it or not, however, the Kerrang! article was what brought Norwegian Black Metal to the rest of the world’s attention. It probably meant the crimes would eternally overshadow the music, but it was undoubtedly the best piece of international P.R. the scene would ever receive.
* This trope tends to be [[ZigZaggingTrope zigzaged]] with hip-hop artists. Sometimes they're overshadowed by controversy, other times they're ''[[NoSuchThingAsBadPublicity FUELED]]'' by it.
* Fear of this trope was what caused Music/IceT to remove "Cop Killer" from Body Count's debut album, as he felt that the controversy over its lyrical content had eclipsed its musical merits.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: New Media ]]

* ''{{Evony}}'', a browser-based, [[AllegedlyFreeGame allegedly free]] strategy game, is more known for its infamous advertising campaign and [[LadyNotAppearingInThisGame false promises of boobs]] than for anything else. On top of that, the publishers have been accused of plagarism, spamming and distributing spyware, and they [[http://www.bruceongames.com/2009/08/25/evony-want-to-sue-me-for-telling-the-truth/ tried to sue a British blogger for libel]] for pointing it out (which [[StreisandEffect backfired predictably]]).
* Very few knew of ''Innocence of Muslims'' on Website/YouTube until protests in the Muslim world were triggered after an excerpt was aired on an Egyptian television station.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Professional Wrestling ]]

* In June 2007, WWE's very last ''Vengeance'' pay-per-view was relaunced as the ''Night of Champions'' event, which continues to this day. This very first ''Night of Champions'' was the only time in history when ''nine'' championships were defended in one night: the WWE Championship, the World Heavyweight Championship [[note]] those first two were combined in 2013 [[/note]], the ECW Championship, the Intercontinental Championship, the United States Championship, the Women's Championship, the Cruiserweight Championship, the World Tag Team Championship, ''and'' the WWE Tag Team Championship! But hardly anybody remembers that, because what they ''do'' remember is that JohnMorrison unexpectedly won the ECW Championship because he was booked in place of ChrisBenoit, who no-showed the event because he was busy murdering his wife and child and then committing suicide. Not only was Benoit's reputation forever tarnished, but Morrison has (at least with some people) [[NeverLiveItDown yet to live down]] the fact that he rose to main-event status in WWE entirely because of an offscreen tragedy.
* {{Wrestling/WWE}}'s 1999 ''Over the Edge'' pay-per-view will forever be known as the event where Wrestling/OwenHart fell to his death.
** Survivor Series 1997: The Montreal Screwjob is pretty much the only thing this event is remembered for.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Video Games ]]

* ''Custer's Revenge'' was an unauthorized third-party game for the {{Atari 2600}} in 1982. It gathered quite a bit of negative attention, particularly from feminist and Native American groups, as the objective involved raping an Indian woman. From the next generation of consoles onward, manufacturers require approval for games to be released on their machines.
* ''VideoGame/{{Daikatana}}'', aside from its years spent in development hell, picked up controversy over its advertising campaign, which stated that "John Romero's about to make you his bitch. Suck it down." The game has mostly been forgotten aside from the aforementioned campaign and the negative press that brought Romero's development career down with it.
** That and the game was absolutely horrible, which is what made the ad campaign so ridiculous in the first place.
* ''VideoGame/DragonsCrown'' had gathered some rather heated arguments around the internet for how the Amazon and Sorceress characters were designed. This actually led to lot of free advertising in the west, [[NoSuchThingAsBadPublicity making the game more successful in the process]].
* The prequel to ''VideoGame/FearEffect'' on the Playstation was known for having the first lesbian couple in the history of video game. A third game was supposed to be released but finally got cancelled.
* The ''VideoGame/{{Manhunt}}'' series was best known for its premise of being about a convict being forced to take part in snuff films (the gameplay was mostly stealth based, with elements of SurvivalHorror). The first game was given mixed reviews, with some marking it down for the {{gorn}} and others praising it for its atmosphere, the sequel received average reviews across the board and the series was mostly forgotten.
* ''VideoGame/MetroidOtherM'' is mainly known for a rather mysogynistic story that in its worst interpretations glorifies an abusive relationship; made all the worse since the series heroine is something of a feminist gaming icon. In second place is the attempted justification for the series' usual BagOfSpilling that [[VoodooShark ends up absurd]] (particularly, not using available heat shielding in a lava-filled area).
* ''MortalKombat'' for being the game that singlehandedly created the ESRB.
* ''VideoGame/NightTrap'' was one of the video games that contributed to the creation of the ESRB ratings in the United States. An infamous bathroom scene[[note]]which the game does call you out for when you fail to spare the girl[[/note]] in particular was what led to intense senate hearings with proponents of the ban saying it glorified violence toward women, while many of them admitted [[ComplainingAboutShowsYouDontWatch they hadn't played the game]].
* The ''VideoGame/{{Postal}}'' series is well-known for being a common target for MoralGuardians to campaign against video game violence, more so than any quality of gameplay, as opposed to other common targets like ''Doom'' or ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAuto''.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Western Animation ]]

* The ''WesternAnimation/AdventureTime'' episode "What Was Missing" immediately became popular, AND controversial, for the alleged lesbian subtext between Princess Bubblegum and Marceline the Vampire Queen.
* The one thing most people remember about the ''WesternAnimation/AquaTeenHungerForce'' movie, other than the kickass opening number by Music/{{Mastodon}}, is its ViralMarketing campaign that caused the Boston Bomb Scare and resulted in then-head of Creator/CartoonNetwork Jim Samples stepping down and being replaced by Stuart Snyder, who became hated for [[NetworkDecay pushing out action cartoons in favor of live-action shows]].
* TheCensoredEleven cartoons remain controversial because of ValuesDissonance causing many once innocent fun scenes to look incredibly racist and politically incorrect. To this day the artistic achievements of these cartoons are discussed less than the objectionable imagery and jokes.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Coonskin}}'', Creator/RalphBakshi's satirical {{Blaxploitation}} reimagining of the Uncle Remus tales. The Rev. Al Sharpton famously criticized the film without even seeing it, saying, "I don't got to see shit; I can smell shit!"
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'' episode, "The Last Round-Up" appears to be only remembered for introducing the fan favorite character Derpy Hooves, and then subsequently censoring her when it found that her portrayal and name was offensive to some. Everything else about the episode is pretty much eclipsed by it.
* The ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark" episodes "200" and "201" is a MilestoneCelebration and we learn the real truth behind Cartman's father. However, "200" caused a Muslim group to send death threats to TreyParkerAndMattStone for depicting Muhammad in a bear suit [[spoiler: (even though it was really Santa Claus)]], Comedy Central altered "201" so all audio and visual references to Muhammad were censored, thus resparking the Muhammed cartoon controversy in real life. To this day, it has never been reran, it's not available for legal streaming and only the censored version has been released on DVD.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Other ]]

* BillClinton is nowadays more remembered for his sex scandals than any of his actual political deeds. Not that it particularly hurt his popularity, as approval polls taken around the time he left office will indicate.
** Sex scandals in particular are great at overshadowing the legacies and/or careers of public figures. Unless said scandal crosses legal or ethical boundaries in an especially heinous way, entertainers tend to have a somewhat easier time shaking these off than politicians do.
* O.J. Simpson's achievements as an American footballer and actor have been overshadowed by the controversy over his involvement in the murder of his wife and her mistress. Most people today know him solely for the murder scandal.
* RichardNixon's presidency has been overshadowed by the Watergate affair. Other memorable events during his administration, even good ones like his visit to China, have been forgotten except for history buffs.
* Silent movie comedian Roscoe Fatty Arbuckle's legacy has been tainted by his involvement in an orgy where a girl was murdered. Even though his name was cleared the affair destroyed his career and public image.
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