YMMV / Carmen

  • Adaptation Displacement: Everyone knows the opera but few have read the novella by Prosper Mérimée the opera was based upon. The novella itself is quite different from the opera, narrated in flashback, and generally having weak characterization. While the author was quite well regarded in his age, the Carmen novella was seen as one of his minor works while Bizet and the librettists made the characters more complex, more developed and added in key supporting characters like Escamillo and Micaela who aren't in the story. So perhaps a Justified Trope.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Carmen can be either seen as a strong, independent and willed woman or a mindless hedonistic bimbo led by her hormones, depending on viewer.
  • Broken Base: The revised ending the 2018 productionnote  introduces. Seeing that the opera hasn't had any major changes for centuries, it certainly drew a lot of buzz. Some praised the concept of it, given the campaign to protest violence against women was a large part in the revision. However, others felt like it just makes Carmen a huge Karma Houdini; despite the tragedy of the ending, Carmen was still largely a manipulative and toxic person for Don Jose to be around, and to see her not only shoot Don Jose herself, but walk away from the story largely unscathed seems to ignore the consequences of her actions.
  • Ear Worm: "Toreador Song" and "Habanera" are both insanely memorable. They are two of the most overused, parodied opera songs in popular consciousness for a reason.
  • Song Association: While "Votre Toast" is well-known and oft-parodied, a lot of people circa 2014 know it as "the song where Freddy stares at you before he kills you."
  • Vindicated by History: It was critically and publicly reviled upon its premiere, because of the questionable moral choices made by the main characters. Bizet died thinking it was a failure. It is now one of the most famous and most beloved operas of all time.