YMMV: Assassins

Film:

  • Complete Monster: Miguel Bain stands in marked contrast to protagonist Robert Rath. While Rath has standards about the people he assassinates and abhors hurting innocents, Bain has a penchant for indiscriminately slaughtering everyone who gets in his way. In the first mission we see him on, he kills the target and his bodyguards, then kills several police officers to escape from custody. When Rath later traps him in the back of a car, Bain prepares to snipe a nearby child to make Rath back down. During an exchange between a hacker named Electra and a group of Dutch clients who turn out to be Interpol agents, he blows away every agent and bystander he runs into and promises Electra that he'll personally cut out her heart. Rath saves Electra, but not before Bain kills Electra's two downstairs neighbours for no real reason. Bain eventually reaches an understanding with his anonymous employer to kill Rath himself, whom he perceives as an irritating rival. Even when Rath offers Bain the opportunity to part ways peacefully at the end, he elects to kill both Rath and Electra instead. Having no regard for any life he takes, Bain became a contract killer largely for glory and thrills.
  • Memetic Mutation: The scene where Banderas's character checks his computer has become a popular reaction GIF in the discussions about gaming news.

Theatre:

  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Depending on the route the director and actors involve take, the Balladeer can come off either as a pompous, smug, condescending prick who got what was coming to him, or simply as a naive Wide-Eyed Idealist who's in way over his head. (If they take the former route, the Balladeer being turned into Oswald comes off as karma. If they take the latter, it just comes off as tragic.)
  • Cry for the Devil: The three ballads are used effectively in this way, but the one that seems to get the audience's sympathy most is "The Ballad of Czolgosz", where assassin Leon Czolgosz's motivations are stated clearly: he was a lonely man, who all throughout his life had lived in poverty and misery for reasons beyond his control, so he killed big business president Bill McKinley to "take control of his fate".
  • Ear Worm:
    • And it's seriously a problem. "What a wonder is a gun! What a versatile inveeeeeention!" Do not see before working with first graders and/or getting on a plane.
    • "How I Saved Roosevelt" is another one you don't want to sing in public - "Too cold for the stomach in Washington/I go down to Miami, kill Roosevelt!"
    • And, of course, you do not want to get caught singing, "C'mere and kill a President..."
    • Nor do you want to be caught going "Damn you Lincoln, you righteous whoooooooooore!"
    • Everybody's got the right to some sunshine/not the sun but maybe one of its beams...
    • The Ballad of Guiteau counts, too. Look on the bright side, look on the bright side...
    • In the USA you can work your way to the head of the line...
  • Evil Is Sexy: "Johnny Booth was a handsome devil."
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Initially met a much better reception in the UK than the USA.
  • Nightmare Fuel: The end of Lee Harvey Oswald's scene, when all the assassins surround him singing about how much they admire him while he loads his rifle and prepares to shoot Kennedy. The Lyrical Dissonance and the menacing sound of the melody make it especially creepy.
    • If done with a strong cast of actors and direction, the whole play is nightmare-inducing because you sympathize with people who have seriously hurt/killed others because they didn't get what they wanted.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Depending on the direction, The Proprietor may pop up throughout the rest of the show, but he's only scripted for the opening scene, leading "Everybody's Got the Right". In the original production, Lee Harvey Oswald was this as well, though ever since the 2004 Broadway revival, it has become common practice to double him with The Balladeer.
  • Strawman Has a Point: The Balladeer may represent the American Dream and be smug and condescending depending on which interpretation you watch but, as he points out during "Another National Anthem", shooting the Presidents didn't solve the Assassins' problems.
    Ballader: Yes, you made a little moment and you stirred a little mud / But it didn't fix the stomach and you've drunk your final Bud / And it didn't help the workers and it didn't heal the country / And it didn't make them listen / And they never said they're sorry."