YMMV: Cirque du Soleil

  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: If you actually try to focus on the plots of the shows that seem to have one, then almost every performance is one big-lipped alligator moment after another.
  • Broken Base: The fandom fractures around a number of issues:
    • Are any shows launched post-1998 — after director Franco Dragone left the company in the wake of an incredible run of shows that began with 1987's Le Cirque Réinventé and ended with the twin triumphs of "O" and La Nouba — worthwhile?
    • The company's attempts to reach beyond circus entertainment are usually controversial, not helped by Criss Angel BeLIEve (magic/illusion) and Banana Shpeel (a Genre Throwback to Vaudeville) getting the company the worst reviews in its history and triggering a Dork Age.
    • In a related issue, productions that cross over Cirque's style with another artist's work will get the company accused of selling out: the Jukebox Musical variants (though The Beatles LOVE usually gets a pass), Criss Angel BeLIEve, Toruk — The First Flight (James Cameron's Avatar), the live television production of The Wiz...
  • Come for the X, Stay for the Y - The surreally-staged acrobatics are what the ads emphasize, and rightly so, but the music, comedy, and characterizations provide much of the shows' repeat value.
  • Dork Age: The explosion of new shows at the Turn of the Millennium culminated in this over 2008-11. Of the ten shows that opened during this period, five were shut down for good by 2013 — an embarrassing statistic after years of shows easily becoming Long Runners. Criss Angel BeLIEve, which duked it out with Banana Shpeel for the dishonor of the worst-reviewed show of the lot, only survived because Criss Angel had a 10-year contract with the hotel. Of the remaining four shows, OVO is one of the least popular in the fanbase, Zarkana had to forsake international touring to serve as a hasty substitute for Viva Elvis in Vegas, and Michael Jackson THE IMMORTAL World Tour was much less profitable than hoped thanks to high music royalty rates charged by Jackson's estate. TOTEM and subsequent new Cirque tours have been extremely well received, as was Michael Jackson ONE, but many fans still think the company focuses too much on quantity and, now, financial frugality over quality and even the health and safety of the performers (the onstage death of Sarah Guyard-Guillot, who fell to her doom during a performance of KA in 2013, didn't improve this perception).
  • Genre Turning Point - The company for circus in general, Mystere (in tandem with Siegfried and Roy's show at the Mirage) for Las Vegas entertainment.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff - Cirque is popular enough in Japan that the Kaleido Stage is clearly inspired by it, and with ZED, it became one of only two countries outside of the U.S. to get a resident show (its closure was only because the earthquake/tsunami of 2011 caused a decline in tourism and thus audiences). This dates back to the 1992 Japan-only tour Fascination.
  • Magnum Opus - "O" for the company as a whole; Alegria is a worthy runner-up and holds this position among the tours.
  • Parvum Opus - Although Criss Angel BeLIEve is a strong contender for this title, the fact that endless retooling could not save Banana Shpeel from completely tanking in all of its incarnations makes that the company's biggest embarrassment.
  • Signature Song - "Alegria".
  • What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs? - A perfect example of this trope.