DT is one of the most polarizing bands in Prog Rock. They're either the best musicians performing today, writing some of the best music out there, or they ramble through overly technical, endless solos. Or they may be both. That's left to your choice.

See also:
* [[AwesomeMusic/DreamTheater Awesome Music - Dream Theater]]
* [[Funny/DreamTheater Funny Moments - Dream Theater]]
* [[Heartwarming/DreamTheater Heartwarming Moments - Dream Theater]]
* [[Awesome/DreamTheater Moment of Awesome - Dream Theater]]
* [[TearJerker/DreamTheater Tear Jerker - Dream Theater]]
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* BigNo: Mike Portnoy leaving the band.
* BrokenBase: Generally in the form of Older Stuff vs. Newer Stuff. The line dividing both parts is generally pretty unclear, but Kevin Moore generally seems to be the most common dividing point. Depending on who you ask, he was either a valuable but nonessential part of the band whose loss was made up for, or he was their secret weapon and someone whose loss made the band go to shit.
* EndingFatigue: "Six Degrees"'s final chord fades out over the course of two minutes, and Finally Free's outro riff repeats twelve times before the song ends... leading into a minute-and-a-half long epilogue that cuts to lingering static. Subverted by "Octavarium", which sounds like it's about to end on the last chord of "Intervals", but transitions into "Razor's Edge", which is epic enough to defy this trope.
* FaceOfTheBand: Mike Portnoy was pretty much the face of the band. He acted as the spokesman and did the bulk of the interviews and other things, and interacted with the fans more than any of the others. Petrucci is a sort of [[TheLancer second in command]]. Jordan also does a lot of face stuff, but usually in the context of a solo artist. John Myung mostly stays out of the limelight. Labrie himself was only going to be a guy who did vocals for them, rather than being a full on member who worked on songs.
* FanonDiscontinuity: Depending on who you ask, the responses you'll get for favorite and least favorite albums tends to be almost random. Every single album will be at the top or bottom of someone's list, and most fans ignore a few albums. Some examples:
** ''When Dream and Day Unite'', due to its fairly jarring EarlyInstallmentWeirdness. As in "there was no DT before James LaBrie".
** ''Falling into Infinity'', due to it being a NewSoundAlbum towards radio-friendliness. Sometimes ''A Change of Seasons'' gets hit as well, getting a "there was no DT with Derek Sherinian".
*** Or, "there was no DT with [[ExecutiveMeddling Desmond Child and Kevin Shirley]] [[WhatCouldHaveBeen interfering with everything]]."
** Everything post-''Scenes...'' (and sometimes ''Scenes'' itself) is subjected to this, as "there's no DT with Jordan Rudess".
** Everything post-''Black Clouds...'' as "there's no DT without Mike Portnoy".
* {{Growing The Beard}}s: As one might tell by the plural, played literally, too. Their breakthrough, ''Images and Words'', was released in 1992 and peaked at #61 in the United States. Nobody had any facial hair. Compare that to 2007's ''Systematic Chaos'', their first Top 20 album (#19) and 2009's ''Black Clouds & Silver Linings'', their first Top 10 (#6) which by then, everyone except Myung is more often seen with big beards and other facial hair.
* HellIsThatNoise:
** The solo and [[FakeOutFadeOut outro]] of "Misunderstood".
** The extended ending to "Panic Attack".
* JerkAss: Mike Portnoy according to some fans, especially after he left the band.
* LargeHam: The ''Black Clouds & Silver Linings'' album treats us to thunder, dissonant piano, heavy guitars, choirs, and organs. Oh, and that's just in the first minute of over an hour of music.
* MemeticBadass: John Petrucci, likely due in large part to the "Psycho Exercises" videos. Most videos on Website/YouTube featuring Petrucci either performing or just talking about his rig, music, etc. have a number of comments referencing absolute world-dominating awesomeness, usually in ways obviously influenced by Website/ChuckNorrisFacts.
* MemeticMutation: [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=evTTHS9hwvU John Petrucci's Psycho Exercises]]. You suck if you can't play five million notes a second like he can.
* MoralEventHorizon: Edward in ''Metropolis, Pt. 2'' crosses it when he [[spoiler: kills Victoria and Julian.]]
* NarmCharm:
** The lyrics on the song "The Count of Tuscany", from ''Black Clouds & Silver Linings'', are some of the most ridiculous in the band's history. [=LaBrie=] sings this like it's the most sinister and creepy thing in the world. The lyrics are undeniably cheesy:
--> ''COME AND HAVE A TASTE!!!''
--> ''A RARE VINTAGE!!!''
--> ''ALL THE FINEST WINES!!!''
--> ''IMPROVE WITH AGE!!!''
** Another example:
--> ''Let me introduce-''
--> My ''brother
--> ''A bearded gentleman''
--> '' '''HISTORIAN'''!!!''
* NeverLiveItDown: Portnoy's recent Twitter outburst (the one where he castigated a fan for wearing a Mangini-era Dream Theater shirt to a meet-and-greet, then subsequently ranted about how he learned that he wasn't allowed to have opinions when called out on it) is starting to look like it's going to become a case of this.
* NightmareFuel:
** "Caught in a Web" can ''really'' [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4VCPdhom8V4 inspire this sort of thing]].
** Their cover of "Flick of the Wrist" by {{Queen}} on the special edition of ''Black Clouds & Silver Linings'' too, specifically the way James [=LaBrie=] sings the verses.
** [[spoiler: Open your eyes, Nicholas. AHH! *record scratch* *static*]]
* ReplacementScrappy:
** Former keyboardist Derek Sherinian, who replaced original keyboardist Kevin Moore. Sherinian's own replacement, Jordan Rudess, was better received.
** Drummer Mike Mangini, regarding former drummer Mike Portnoy's departure.
* TheScrappy:
** Charlie Dominici
** Derek Sherinian
** James [=LaBrie=], as far as metal is concerned.
* StunnedSilence: A common response upon first hearing ''Scenes from a Memory'' or "A Change of Seasons".
* ThatOneBoss: "Constant Motion" and "Panic Attack" in RockBand, as well as "Pull Me Under" from GuitarHero, especially on drums and bass.
* TheyChangedItNowItSucks:
** Subverted by [=LaBrie=], who replaced Dominici. This was immediately followed by the release of ''Images and Words'', their biggest mainstream success.
** Kevin Moore's departure from the band.
** Subverted again with Derek Sherinian, who replaced Kevin Moore before they released "A Change of Seasons", widely regarded as their best song to date.
** And once again subverted by Jordan Rudess, who replaced Derek Sherinian. after it, they released ''Scenes from a Memory'', which is regarded by many fans as their absolute greatest album.
** Some fans had this attitude after Mike Portnoy was replaced by Mike Mangini. Although it's gotten better since the release of the self titled, since Mangini feels more open with his drumming.
* ToughActToFollow: Pretty much anything post-''Images and Words'' (and sometimes ''Awake'') is subjected to this, with the exception of ''Scenes...''.
** ''Falling Into Infinity'' suffered from this ''hard'' due to following up the critically acclaimed ''Awake''. James [=LaBrie=] suffering from a vocal cord injury also didn't help matters. But what really hurt this album was ExecutiveMeddling up the wazoo, such as the band having to write shorter, "radio-friendly" songs, producer Kevin Shirley making a lot of changes (such taking the middle section out of "Burning My Soul" and turning it into what would become "Hell's Kitchen"), and the band being forced to work with an outside songwriter, Desmond Child. The album was a critical and commercial failure upon release, although in the recent years, fans and critics alike have been much [[VindicatedByHistory kinder to the album]].
** ''Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence'' is a very underrated album, mainly because it was unfortunate enough to come after ''Scenes From a Memory'', which is widely considered their best album.
* VindicatedByHistory: ''Falling Into Infinity'' was a failure after it was released. Nowadays, a lot of people place it into their "best DT albums" lists.
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