[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/jesus-christ-superstar-1974-film-soundtrack.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:295:[-[[FauxSymbolism This is not symbolic]].-] ]]

->''Every time I look at you I don't understand\\
Why you let the things you did get so out of hand.\\
You'd have managed better if you'd had it planned;\\
Why'd you choose such a backward time in such a strange land?\\
If you'd come today you could have reached a whole nation--\\
Israel in 4 B.C. had no mass communication!\\
...\\
Jesus Christ, Jesus Christ! Who are You? What have You sacrificed?\\
Jesus Christ, Superstar, do You think You're what they say You are?''

A RockOpera and (subverted?) PassionPlay by Creator/AndrewLloydWebber and TimRice. Originally released as a ConceptAlbum in 1970, it made its way to the Broadway and London stage in 1971 and was filmed as a major movie in 1973. An updated version was recorded sometime around 2000 by Webber's Really Useful Group for PBS, and the show lives on in stage production and tours to this day. InspiredBy certain sections of Literature/TheBible, it chronicles the last seven days of Jesus' life, focusing mainly on the characters of Jesus, Judas and Mary Magdalene. It's regarded among Andrew Lloyd Webber's best works. It's sort of a sequel to ''Theatre/JosephAndTheAmazingTechnicolorDreamcoat'', though this took a bit more liberty with the source material.

Depending on the production, the actors and settings in the show are portrayed with blends of modern and biblical-era clothing and motifs, running with the idea of Jesus being a rockstar-like figure (something not always appreciated by the MoralGuardians), the Apostles being [[NewAgeRetroHippie counter-cultural radicals]], and the Romans dressing in black leather and taking a {{Big Brother|IsWatching}} approach to running TheEmpire. The 2000 filmed version updates the visual metaphors. Specifically, setting it in a modern-day dystopic version of the Roman Empire with Nazi-esque guards, and Jesus' followers appear to be a street gang, seen toting submachine guns and assault rifles at times. The plot is pretty much the same, but with different things emphasized; Annas, for instance, appears in many more scenes than in the '73 version and in a [[EvilChancellor very different light]], the HoYay between Judas and Jesus is played up to the point of a LoveTriangle with Mary Magdalene, and some other things.
----
!!Tropes:
* AmbiguousEnding: The film ends shortly after the death of Jesus with the rest of the cast simply boarding the bus; Pilate, Mary Magdalene and Judas (last of all) look back wistfully. The matter of the resurrection is left unclear.
* AmbiguouslyGay: Pontius Pilate is mildly campy and "theatrical" in many productions following the original, to the point of {{flanderization}} when Film/{{Monty Python|sLifeOfBrian}} [[FollowTheLeader did it too]].
** This is probably due to the very flamboyant Barry Dennen, who created the role in the ConceptAlbum, original stage production, and 1973 film.
** [[http://i42.tinypic.com/16llco5.jpg King Herod]], anyone?
* AmbiguouslyJewish: The 1973 film plays this up with ''King Herod'' of all people, adding an AmbiguouslyJewish [[FunnyAfro appearance]] (and, {{a|mbiguouslyGay}}rguably, voice) to his [[YouHaveToHaveJews stage-musical style]] [[OutOfGenreExperience song]].
** Might count as FridgeBrilliance, as the historical Herod was a thoroughly Romanized client king with connections to the imperial family.
* AnachronismStew: Some characters in the original film, like Mary Magdalene and Jesus, have decent costumes. Then you see the Roman guards, whose armor consists of purple tank tops, cargo pants, combat boots, AK 47s, and sticks. Other people for crowd scenes seemingly just walk onto the camera with whatever they're wearing.
** Judas running away from TANKS.
** Somewhat justified in that [[RealLifeWritesThePlot the film was set up as something these several busloads of hippies were putting on for some reason in the middle of the desert]].
** In the 2000 version, Jesus sees that the Temple has become a [[VivaLasVegas Vegas-like]] Tourist Trap, especially with {{Poker}} games, slot machines, {{Professional Gambler}}s, [=TVs=], [[BreathWeapon fire-breathers]] and a [[TheQuincyPunk guard]] with [[DelinquentHair mohawk hair]] (though this is perhaps justified in it being a more modern adaptation).
** Even more justified than the anachronisms in the 2000 version are those in the 2012 arena tour, as it appears to have been transplanted to some kind of Occupy camp (Occupy Jerusalem, perhaps...?), but the Temple in ''that'' version has been turned into a nightclub, complete with drag queens dressed as angels and devils, and topless dancers.
* {{Angrish}}: "Don’t believe -- our good -- save Him -- if I could!"
* AngryBlackMan: Simon and Judas in the 1973 version. They have NoIndoorVoice.
** Caiaphas in the 2000 revival. Also a {{Badass Ba|ritone}}ss.
* AntiVillain
** Judas, portrayed with sympathetic motivation throughout.
** Pilate, as well, much as in the canonical gospels. (But not in RealLife.)
* BecauseDestinySaysSo
-->'''Jesus''': You have nothing in your hands. Any power you have comes to you from far beyond. Everything is fixed, ''and you can't change it.''
* BecomingTheMask: Jesus, according to Judas: ''"Jesus! You started to believe, the things they say of you. You really do BELIEVE this talk of God is true. And all the good you done, will soon get swept away: YOU begun to matter more, than the things you say."''
** Note that in the 1973 version, this song comes right after the scene where the hippie actors steps out of the van and put on their costumes to become the biblical characters.
* BiggerThanJesus: Er... Actually "bigger than John[[note]]as in "The Baptist", but we won't judge you if you read "Lennon"[[/note]] was".
* BigNo: Only in the 2000 film version
-->'''Pilate''': You're Herod's Race!
-->'''Mary''': NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
-->'''Pilate''': You're Herod's Case!
* BitingTheHandHumor: The 2012 British Arena tour version has Herod's song, performed by Chris Moyles, be a TakeThat at [[{{ITV}} ITV1]] style {{Talent Show}}s replete with showing Herod's judgement of Jesus as a false god being based on TV viewer's votes. Guess how Ben Forster this version's Jesus was selected?
** Used again in the Australian Arena Tour, with Herod now played by Andrew O'Keefe, host of the long running series DealOrNoDeal, who essentially spends every minute on stage making fun of himself.
* BlatantLies: "It's not that I object to her profession..."
* BreadEggsMilkSquick: A wicked part in ''The Arrest'':
-->'''Crowds:''' Come with us to see Caiaphas!\\
You'll just love the high priest's house!\\
You'll just love seeing Caiaphas!\\
You'll just die in the high priest's house!
** Also, arguably, the way the last line of the chorus changes during ''Hosanna'':
-->Hey JC, JC, won't you smile at me?\\
...\\
Hey JC, JC, you're all right by me.\\
...\\
Hey JC, JC, won't you fight for me?\\
...\\
Hey JC, JC, won't you die for me?
* BSODSong: Lines from ''Judas' Death'' and ''Gethsemane'' are the page quotes for the trope in question.
* BuffySpeak: "...than John was when John did his baptism thing?"
* {{Camp}}: Pilate is highly, shall we say, "exaggerated", especially in the 39 lashes.
* CampGay: Herod, in many productions. In the 1973 film, he's practically an {{expy}} of Music/EltonJohn.
** Also subverted in some of these; it's a façade that he keeps to hide his actual accent.
*** In RealLife, Herod was a notorious womanizer, and the whole CampGay thing was something his detractors made up to discredit him. Thus, some productions (including the 2000 film) now portray Herod as a Seedy Hollywood Agent/1980s yuppie-type who seems to be tolerating Jesus' presence as a favor to a friend.
** The 1996 London Cast Recording got Music/AliceCooper to sing the Herod song. Make of that what you will.
* ChewingTheScenery:
** Jesus in "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X_mJgVwQ3Qw Gethsemane]]"
** Judas in every song, especially as played by [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dDzxn66W3uM Carl Anderson]].
** Pilate in [[WorldOfHam every song]], really.
** Justified in that this is a rock opera. Both Rock and Opera are known for not exactly being realist drama.
* ComicallyMissingThePoint: Simon gets an entire song dedicated to how he and the other hangers-on think Jesus is there to violently overthrow the Romans.
** When the play caused controversy, a British clergyman attempted to defend it by urging people to overlook the long hair and beards (which were most likely historically correct) and instead listen to the lyrics (which, apparently unbeknownst to him, are often subversive to Christian beliefs).
* CompositeCharacter: Mary Magdalene in the musical's story combines elements of herself with that of Mary, the sister of Martha, whose "waste" of costly perfume on Jesus was derided by Judas.
* ContractualGenreBlindness: Pilate.
* CosmicPlaything: Judas regards himself as one [[BSODSong at the end]].
* DarkerAndEdgier: In 1998, Webber said that he wanted to give a new design for the musical, saying that the funky disco and sequined leisure suits were fresh for its time, but he wanted to make it into something the younger people could relate to. When making the 2000 version he wanted it to be grittier and darker than the earlier versions.
* DarkReprise: Several. Both I Don't Know How to Love Him and Hosanna have dark reprises. When Jesus accuses his followers of not caring about him at the end of What's the Buzz, they answer with "No, you're wrong, how can you say that?" which is set to the same music used later for "Now we've got him, take him to Pilate." And meanwhile Damned For All Time/Blood Money, which wasn't pleasant to begin with, gets even worse the second time around.
* DeadlyDecadentCourt: Herod's clique in the 1973 version, Jesus' clique in the 2000 version. In both cases a PsychopathicManchild surrounding himself with yes-men. In the 2000 case also rife with constant infighting, with Judas versus Mary and Jesus versus Simon trying to outmaneuver each other for power as the build-up for Judas betraying Jesus.
* DeadpanSnarker: Judas, in the 1973 version.
* {{Doublespeak}}: It isn't blood money. It's a fee, nothing more. Right, Judas?
* DownerEnding: The story ends after the crucifixion, so it can seem a bit depressing if you're unfamiliar with the [[Literature/TheBible supplementary materials]].
** [[AmbiguousEnding Whether or not he came back is for you, the viewer, to decide.]]
* DreamingOfThingsToCome: "Pilate's Dream"
-->''Then I saw thousands of millions crying for this man''
-->''And then I heard them mentioning my name...and leaving me the blame.''
* DrivenToSuicide: Judas, natch.
* EpicRocking: "The Last Supper." Also, "Overture", "Heaven on Their Minds", "What's the Buzz/Strange Thing Mystifying", and "Everything's Alright" are all performed as one extremely long song, clocking in at about 17 minutes (!)
* EvilIsHammy: Pilate, Caiaphas, Herod, Annas.
* EvilSoundsDeep: Caiaphas, the high priest responsible for Jesus' trial, is usually a bass.
** This is emphasized by pairing him with Annas, who's usually a countertenor (the highest voice type for a male).
* ExactWords / HistoricalInJoke:
-->'''Caiaphas''': ''(comforting Judas)'' "What you have done will be the saving of Israel! / You'll be remembered forever for this."
* ExternalRetcon: Retells the story from Judas's perspective.
* FacePalm: Judas's reaction to Simon's song in the 2000 version.
** Jesus at the start of Herod's song in the same version.
* FacelessGoons: In the 2000 version, the Roman soldiers wear full-length coats and face-hiding helmets that have invited [[Franchise/StarWars Darth Vader]] comparisons.
* {{Fanservice}}: The 2000 filmed version has shirtless Pilate and dominatrix angels.
** Not to mention the apostles in leather pants. And Jesus's tight cargo pants. And the ''entire'' temple scene.
** In the seventies film version, the high priests all go shirtless. And Caiaphas is ripped.
** The 1973 version also has a rare occurrence of male AbsoluteCleavage, in the form of Judas' shirt.
** On the female side, the 1973 version has prostitutes dancing provocatively in the Temple scene. Doubles as FanDisservice because of the context and the stressful music.
* FiveManBand:
** TheHero: Jesus
** TheLancer: Judas
** TheSmartOne: Simon
** TheBigGuy: Peter
** TheChick: Mary
* ForegoneConclusion: It's a PassionPlay. ItWasHisSled territory by default.
* FramingDevice
* GhostSong: Judas comes back to sing the title song as Jesus is marched up to the crucifixion site. (See page quote).
* GodTest: Quoth Herod to Jesus, "Prove to me that you're no fool/Walk upon my swimming pool."
* GoodColorsEvilColors: The show's not quite subtle about its color palette. Jesus is always in white and khaki. Judas is in red and, especially after his betrayal, black. Mary Magdalene is usually in red, but changes to white for "Could We Start Again, Please?" The High Priests wear black. Pilate wears purple (which denotes royalty). The apostles are usually in greens and blues.
** Oddly done in different ways in the movies. In the '70s, Judas returns as an angel, dressed all in white with a wing-like fringe on his arms. In the 2000 version, Judas and his backup are clad all in red leather, thus implying that he's a demon.
* HamToHamCombat: Jesus and Judas go up against each other in notes [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tjOvk7RFYTU#t=4m44s so high]] it would take a ''miracle'' to duplicate.
* HellBentForLeather: The High Priests and Pharisees.
* HippieJesus: Christ and the Apostles as hippies.
** Especially, of course, in the 1973 version. At one point, after Judas riles Jesus by suggesting he not spend time with ex-prostitutes, one of the followers says "Hey, cool it, man!"
* HippieVan: The cast arrive in vans and a schoolbus.
* HistoricalVillainUpgrade: Inverted. The key individuals responsible for Jesus's death (Judas, Caiaphas, Pilate) are given much more sympathetic depictions than almost anywhere else. Herod's still a jerk, though.
* HookerWithAHeartOfGold: Mary Magdalene.
* IAmAHumanitarian: Violently defied in the 2000 version of the last supper, as one of the apostles reacts with disgust against the food while Jesus sings "''this is my blood you drink, this is my body you eat''". (The 1973 version doesn't bring up cannibalistic interpretations of the lyrics at all.)
* IgnoredEpiphany: Pilate's dream.
* InformedAbility: In the 1973 version only, there is no basis for the claim that Maria Magdalene is the kind of person who is calm and cool and running every show. (The 2000 version has the same lyrics, but the character now fit with them.)
* IWantMyMommy: Jesus, in the 2000 version only: "Where is my mother? WHERE IS MY MOTHER?!"
* IncrediblyLongNote: The climactic MetalScream (''"See... how... I... '''DIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIEEEEE'''"'') in "Gethsemane" can fall under this. The champion is probably Steve Balsamo, from the 1996 London cast; on the soundtrack album, he holds the note a full ''twenty seconds''.
* [[JerkassGods Jerkass God]]: While ultimately heroic as always (assuming his death counted for something in the end, which here is debatable), this version of Jesus is hardly the image of IncorruptiblePurePureness most people are used to seeing. He screams at people to leave him alone, [[NietzscheWannabe takes a nihilistic point of view a distressing number of times]], and at one point is cuttingly sarcastic to his own followers:
-->'''Jesus:''' For all you care / This wine could be my blood / For all you care / This bread could be my body.
** Jesus sees his Father as this as well, demanding to know during the "Gethsemane" song what justice there could be in his having to die and receiving no answer. By the end of the song he is quite bitter, and sulkily tells the Father to send the mob to arrest him "before I change my mind."
** Could actually be justified in Jesus' case, when you think about it. After all, when someone knows that they have to give their life up for the greater good but doesn't feel ready for it at all, while also being surrounded by fair-weather disciples and enemies who are hell-bent on killing them just because of their teachings (and the fact that they claim to be the Messiah), could anyone blame the person for being more than frustrated later on? If anything, this complex portrayal of Jesus serves to show the audience that he's more than just God on Earth; he's a fleshed-out individual who is just as human as he is divine.
* JesusWasCrazy: ''Jesus Christ Superstar'' is (among other things) built like a point-counterpoint debate regarding who and what Jesus was. While Mary Magdalene and the apostle Simon represent two very different versions of JesusWasWayCool, Pontius Pilate goes down the Jesus Was Crazy road - [[InsanityDefense trying to defend Jesus by arguing that he's insane]]. See page quote.
** Note that the "cool vs crazy" debate is not about being for or against Jesus. Pilate is trying to save him, while Caiaphas, who is trying to get him crucified, subscribes to the "Jesus is cool" camp. In the initial scene, Judas is still loyal to Jesus, and yet complains about how Jesus is turning increasingly mentally unstable under the pressure from his believers.
* JesusWasWayCool: [[TropeNamers Even Caiaphas is impressed]].
-->'''Caiaphas''': One thing I'll say for him, Jesus is cool.
** The 2000 version instead has this line by a nameless priest as part of it's...significantly lessened ambiguity:
-->'''Priest''': Infantile sermons, the multitude drools!
* KangarooCourt: All three of Jesus's trials; at the hands of Caiaphas, Herod and Pontius.
* MeaningfulBackgroundEvent: During "Simon Zealotes" in the 1973 film version, Roman soldiers can be seen gathering to observe the commotion. Judas is also in the background, visibly disturbed by the events before storming off during the next song, "Poor Jerusalem".
* MediumAwareness: When Jesus is being taken to trial, one of his fans confidently shouts, "You'll escape in the final reel!" [[WrongGenreSavvy Unfortunately ...]]
* MetalScream: Inspired by Ian Gillan of Music/DeepPurple (as Jesus) and Murray Head (as Judas) on the original Concept Album. Ted Neely (as Jesus) and Carl Anderson, an understudy for Ben Vereen (as Judas) became famous for the roles on stage and film, since Gillan and Head had become too successful as musicians to perform, and duplicating their vocal range can be quite difficult for other actors. Interestingly, Murray Head is not black; Ben Vereen and subsequently Carl Anderson pioneered that idea, in no small part because Anderson simply had the voice for the notes.
* MilkingTheGiantCow: Jesus and Judas in the 1973 film.
* MoodWhiplash: A disturbing amount for a religion-based story. The juxtaposition of Mary Magdalene's sweet CrapsaccharineWorld anthem "Everything's Alright" with Judas's angry accusations against her probably qualifies. An even better example is the jarring shift (at least on the concept album) from King Herod's comical music-hall number to Judas's histrionic reaction to seeing the scourging of Jesus.
* MovieBonusSong: An unusual example. While many film versions of stage musicals include an original AwardBaitSong, the only new song featured is the short VillainSong between Annas and Caiaphas, "Then We Are Decided."
** "Could We Start Again, Please?" is often mistaken for one of these by fans of the original album. However, it was actually added for the original Broadway production a few years before the movie.
* MyGodWhatHaveIDone: Hoo boy. Judas does not take this whole betrayal thing well.
* NewAgeRetroHippie: Extremely pronounced. This and ''Theatre/{{Hair}}'' are probably the most NewAgeRetroHippie plays that exist. Not really "retro" when the film / play / soundtrack was first produced, but Jesus' followers are portrayed as counter-cultural hippies and Judas and the Zealots are portrayed as members of the New Left. This is especially pronounced in the film.
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed: Herod in the 2000 version is Florenz Ziegfeld.
* NoIndoorVoice: Judas (in the style of Carl Anderson, at least).
* OhCrap: In the 2000 version, Jesus, Mary, and Judas all make this face at each other after the crowd in "Hosanna" sings its final line.
** Also in the 2000 version, when Jesus is tied down on the cross and turns his head to see one soldier hand the other a nail.
* OminousMultipleScreens: In the 2000 version, the High Priests have these in their boardroom, switching on to show Jesus and his adoring crowds as the "Hosanna" chorus starts.
* OmniscientCouncilOfVagueness: The High Priests and Pharisees.
* OnlySaneMan: Judas, at least from his perspective, likewise Caiaphas from his, and Pilate from his.
* OriginalCastPrecedent: The high MetalScream in almost every version of Gethsemane? Not written in the sheet music. Just the basic melody and an ad-libbed note.
* PassionPlay
* PunctuatedForEmphasis:
** FOOLS! YOU! HAVE NO PERCEPTION!
** WHAT! DO! YOU MEAN. BY. THAT? THAT WAS NOT. AN ANSWER!
* ProphecyTwist
* PsychopathicManchild: Varying with the versions.
** In the 1973 version only, Herod is this. Jesus is not - although some of his lyrics point in this direction, he is still portrayed as a dignified and compassionate person on the whole.
** In the 2000 version, Jesus is portrayed in a quite different light, putting him squarely in the Psychopathic Manchild category - same lyrics, different body language and facial expressions and so on. For example, the scene where Simon sings about power and glory and Jesus comes back about how Simon and the others don't understand what power and glory is. In the 1973 version, Jesus looks dignified and genuinely sad over the apostle's shallow understanding. In the 2000 version, Jesus looks jealous, with an attitude of "How dare you steal my show! I'm the prophet here, not you! Me, me, me!" Which comes across as especially petty as Simon just led a counterstrike that pushed back a roman attack, arguably saving Jesus and the others.
* PuttingOnTheReich: In the 2000 version, Pilate's uniform is purposefully reminiscent of the Gestapo.+
** In the Moscow stage production, the High Priests first appear in riot gear and then perform a song to the tune of "This Jesus Must Die" dressed in black suits with red Soviet armbands.
* TheQueensLatin: Pilate.
* RageAgainstTheHeavens: Done literally by Jesus in "Gethsemane," and Judas in "Judas' Death."
* RecycledInSpace: The story of Jesus... [-IN {{THE SEVENTIES}}!-]
** Or the story of Jesus... in [[WrongSideOfTheTracks the ghetto]] and coated in HoYay!
** Or in the UK 2012 Arena tour... in Occupy London!
* RefrainFromAssuming: The opening song that Judas sings is "Heaven on Their Minds," not "Listen Jesus" or any variation thereupon.
** Jesus' HeroicBSOD Song is simply "Gethsemane," not "I Only Want To Say," though it is sometimes called "Gethsemane (I Only Want To Say)."
** The finale is simply "Superstar," not "Jesus Christ Superstar."
* TheResenter: Judas.
* RoyalBrat: Herod.
* RuleOfCool: The new stage adaptation runs on this. For example, during the performance of Pilate's Dream, Pilate is surrounded by government officials who move in slow motion, then speed up, ZackSnyder-style. On ''stage.''
* SceneryPorn: Norman Jewison ''really'' took advantage of filming in Israel for the first film.
* ScrewDestiny: Both Judas and Jesus are sorely tempted to try this, but both succumb to YouCantFightFate for different reasons.
--> '''Judas''': You want me to do it! What if I just stayed here and ruined your ambition? Christ, you deserve it!
* ShamingTheMob: Pilate ''lambasts'' the mob screaming for Jesus to be crucified, since he sees Jesus as a harmless crazy man being used as a scapegoat by the mob for the revolutionary rumblings his presence set off. Nearly half of Pilate's final song is calling the crowd hypocrites and pointing out the DisproportionateRetribution they're forcing him to deal to Jesus.
--> '''Pilate''': I see no reason! I find no evil! This man is ''harmless'', so why does he upset you?! He's just misguided! Thinks he's important! But to keep you ''vultures'' happy I will flog him!
* ShapedLikeItself: "You liar! You Judas!"
* ShoutOut: In the 1973 film, when Jesus and the twelve apostles sit down for The Last Supper, they all freeze for a moment in the exact poses depicted in LeonardoDaVinci's famous painting of The Last Supper. Movie fans have used this scene to identify exactly which actors are playing which apostles, since not all of them are identified by name in the film.
** The Moscow stage production directly quotes Jesus' and Pilates' dialogue from TheMasterAndMargarita.
* SilentCredits: In the 1973 film. Considering it's a musical, the effect is somewhat unnerving.
* SissyVillain: Some portrayals of Herod.
* SkywardScream: Several, usually combined with EpicRocking and MilkingTheGiantCow.
* SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism: Depending on the production, the entire message of the play can be changed. The songs and script themselves are just general enough to paint Jesus ''or'' Judas as the protagonist to root for. Jesus can vary between being [[JesusWasWayCool well, a pretty nice guy]], to a snob who's all talk, or whether or not he is even actually the son of God. To this day people still aren't sure whether the play was intended to give a family friendly Christian story, or whether it was made to cast a more jaded light on it.
* SlutShaming: Judas doesn't believe that Mary Magdalene (or "women of her kind") is an appropriate companion for Jesus.
* SomethingWeForgot
* SopranoAndGravel: Frequently used with Annas and Caiaphas, especially as performed by Kurt Yaghjian and Bob Bingham in the 1973 version.
* StealthPun: Some particularly clever ones.
** Not least the entirety of "I Don't Know How to Love Him" which, if listened to properly, is a song consisting almost entirely of innuendo.
** '''Caiaphas''': ''(comforting Judas)'' "What you have done will be the [[StealthPun saving of Israel!]]"
** '''Judas''':''(considering not betraying Jesus)'' "Christ, you deserve it!"
* SuicideByCop: Arguably, Jesus (in this story only). He knows he has to die to achieve what God wants, Pilate ''begs'' him to save himself, but he forces Pilate's hand as much as the mob does.
* SummonBackupDancers: Simon Zealotes does this. In the film, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sPq_914s2Jw they appear out of thin air]] as the music kicks in.
** Jesus also has this ability.
* TakeThisJobAndShoveIt: Pilate spends the entire show (and many of the lyrics of the First and Second Trials) ''hating'' his job. One can hardly blame him when he finally throws in the towel.
-->'''Pilate''': I wash my hands of your demolition! ''Die if you want to'', you innocent puppet!
* ATasteOfTheLash: The 39 lashes... ''in song''. Although, in the 2000 version, Pilate gradually loses his composure as he counts out each lashing; by the mid-twenties, he's visibly flinching.
* TheyJustDontGetIt: The entire point of the song "Poor Jerusalem".
* ThoseTwoBadGuys: Caiaphas and Annas.
* UncommonTime: "Everything's Alright" is in 5/4.
** "The Temple" is in 7/4.
* VillainousBreakdown: ''Judas' Death''. This is what all other breakdown tropes want to be when they grow up. It is the God of character meltdowns.
* VillainSong: "This Jesus Must Die" and "King Herod's Song."
** Also "We Are Decided" in the movie. Also virtually every song sung by Judas (with a few exceptions) are Villain Songs, even if he is an Anti-Villain.
* VoiceTypes: Jesus, Judas, Simon Zealotes and King Herod are tenors. Mary Magdalene is an alto. Pilate and Peter are baritones. Caiaphas is a bass. Annas is a countertenor, unless you [[CrosscastRole cross-cast]], in which case s/he is usually a mezzo-soprano. Other productions, such as the 1996 London cast, simply drop his lines down an octave, making him a baritone.
* WorldOfHam: Israel in 33 AD.
* WellIntentionedExtremist: Jesus ''and'' Judas.
** Arguably, Caiaphas, who thinks that Jesus is a pretty cool guy, but feels that he has to have him killed to prevent him from stirring up revolution and provoking retaliation from Rome. When Judas is having his BSOD, Caiaphas comforts him, saying that his actions have saved Israel.
* YouCantFightFate: One of the main themes (along with all the HoYay). Jesus, Judas, Pilate and even Peter struggle to escape the roles that have been written for them, or at least to pass/pin the blame for their part on someone else, but to no avail. God ''will'' have His martyr, His betrayer(s), and His bloody, horrible ending.

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