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YMMV: Chicago
Musical
  • Adaptation Displacement: Unless you're a fan of TCM (Turner Classic Movies) you've most likely never even heard of the original non-musical movie (1927). Or the 1926 play (now known as Play Ball) the film was based on, whose story was actually Ripped from the Headlines.
  • Angst? What Angst?: The one innocent inmate in the "Cell Block Tango"; while the film averts this, the original Broadway recording features her sounding more frustrated and annoyed by her situation than anything and sounding rather deadpan and matter-of-fact when delivering the line, "Uh-uh, not guilty".
  • Ear Worm: Lots. Cell Block Tango comes to mind.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: The legal system is a farce and a circus, and fame will let you get away with anything. Additionally, if you are falsely accused of murder, you're more likely to get executed than someone who did. The saddest thing is that much too often this is true.
  • Hollywood Pudgy: Roxie snarks at Velma to "lay off the chocolates". On the other hand, Roxie isn't exactly a nice person, and might just want to snub her back because Velma insulted her before.
  • Memetic Mutation: "He ran into my knife ten times."
    • "Give 'em the 'ol razzle dazzle."
  • Promoted Fanboy: Before getting the Amos role in the 1996 revival, Joel Grey used "Razzle Dazzle" in 1976 to teach Gonzo the Great how to do a show-stopping act.
  • The Woobie:
    • At live shows, Amos's Woobiedom can be measured empirically by listening to the audience's "Awwww"s after "Mister Cellophane". "My exit music, please." (silence) He tends to get lots of applause after leaving the stage, though. Alternately, playing Amos (and Mr. Cellophane) for laughs is a valid choice, and could be pulled off well.
    • Poor Hunyak as well.
    • Jerkass Woobie: Depending on how sympathetic you find her character, Roxie herself.

Film
  • Most of the above inherited from the stage version.
  • Foe Yay: Roxie and Velma.
  • Hype Backlash: Soon after it won big at the Oscars (it beat The Two Towers, The Pianist and Gangs of New York for Best Picture), this set in.
  • Magnificent Bastard: Billy Flynn, especially when we find out about his plan involving Roxie's diary.
  • Misaimed Fandom: Especially on places like Tumblr, because it's such a good and passionate song, "Cell Block Tango" is seen as some sort of feminist empowerment anthem.
  • Tear Jerker: Hunyak's execution.
  • Uncanny Valley: Roxie, as well as the reporters, in "We Both Reached For the Gun" in the 2002 film version. Oddly enough, the reason it's so eerie is because it's actual people made up, dressed up, and choreographed like marionettes (or a ventriloquist dummy in Roxie's case), making them inhuman enough that it's just plain creepy.
  • Win Back the Crowd: Along with Moulin Rouge!, this revived interest in movie musicals.

Band
  • Accidental Innuendo: Before they even became the Chicago Transit Authority, they went by the name "the Big Thing", which apparently caused some controversy in the Chicago club circuit.
  • Broken Base: Their stuff post-Kath era divides the fanbase.
  • Ear Worm
  • Epic Riff: "25 or 6 to 4".
  • Face of the Band: Averted for a while, then in The Eighties, it was Peter Cetera. Who then left halfway through the decade.
  • Replacement Scrappy: Kath replacement Donnie Dacus lasted for only two albums(Hot Streets and Chicago XIII), and was later acknowledged as "a mistake".
    • Unfortunately, this goes for any lead vocalist who's name isn't Terry Kath.
  • Signature Song: Depending on whom you ask, "25 Or 6 To 4," "Saturday In The Park," or "Hard To Say I'm Sorry."
  • Too Dumb to Live: Terry Kath, who forgot the first rule of guns: Always assume it's loaded.
    • Justified, he had enough depression/substance abuse issues to not really care.

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