!! The film and franchise as a whole:

* AcceptableTargets: New Jersey. "You're on the Jersey side of this cesspool!"
* BrokenBase: Mostly regarding the sequels.
** Those who think that the series gradually [[EvenBetterSequel gets]] [[SurprisinglyImprovedSequel better]] versus those who think [[{{Sequelitis}} it gets worse]], whether or not they liked the first one.
** Those who felt that the first movie was either average or awful and the saved it versus those who think the first movie is the only good one.
* CoveredUp: The series' various covers of "I Like to Move It" are all much more popular and well known than the original Reel 2 Real song.
* CrazyAwesome: The penguins wouldn't be the badass heroes they are if they weren't completely insane. Trailers for the first film prominently featured Alex proclaiming "the penguins are psychotic!" -- he's right, but it's not at all a bad thing.
* CriticalResearchFailure:
** The titular island is depicted as being uninhabited by humans. [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madagascar Yeah, about that...]]
** While the Central Park Zoo does house penguins, it does not house lions, zebras, hippos, giraffes or monkeys. [[ShownTheirWork It did feature large animals at one point]], however, so the filmmakers gave New York the first film a 60's feel.
* CrossesTheLineTwice: Has [[CrossesTheLineTwice/{{Madagascar}} its own page]].
* EarWorm:
** "I like to move it, move it! I like to move it, move it! I like to move it, move it! We like to..."
*** "Move it!"
* EnsembleDarkhorse: The Penguins and King Julien XIII. The Penguins were only a sub-plot to start and keep things rolling, and King Julien was only intended to have two lines, but they became so popular that not only did they get extended roles, but they also got larger roles in the sequel, and ''then'' they got a hugely popular spin-off even though nobody knows how they got back to the Zoo in that continuity.
* EvenBetterSequel[=/=]SurprisinglyImprovedSequel: The first movie got mixed reviews, but each sequel improved on its predecessors according to critics, especially the third movie.
** CriticalDissonance: There are many Madagascar fans who prefer the first film to the second one, as well as those who consider the third the worst of the bunch.
* FunnyAneurysmMoment: When the gang first washes up on the island, Melman deduces that they have arrived in San Diego, and Alex laments having to compete with [[Ride/SeaWorld Shamu]] and his "smug little grin". Modern audiences who have seen ''Film/BlackFish'' would know Shamu is anything but smug.
* GeniusBonus: Considering how most people had probably [[SeldomSeenSpecies never heard of fossa before this movie]], the fact that the lemurs misspell it "foosa" is a joke that goes over most people's heads.
* HarsherInHindsight: A tamer example: "the wild" Marty's ArcWords. After one discovers that this was [[DuelingMovies a pre-emptive ripoff]] of ''WesternAnimation/TheWild'', it not only feels awkward, but kind of sleazy.
* HilariousInHindsight:
** Alex threatens to clone Marty after killing him, and then kill all his clones. In the sequel, while Alex doesn't harm them, Marty encounters a herd of zebras, that are absolutely identical to him, which causes Alex to confuse Marty with other zebras.
** Melman was [[WhatCouldHaveBeen originally]] an [[SeldomSeenSpecies okapi]], but was changed to a giraffe for fear of audiences [[SmallTaxonomyPools not knowing what an okapi is.]] Years later, in the Valentine's special ''Madly Madagascar'', an okapi character appears as Marty's girlfriend.
* HoYay:
** Alex, with his flamboyant, Broadway style dance maneuvers, [[{{Keet}} overexcited personality]], and suspiciously close relationship with his best friend, Marty the zebra. In the first film, he gets very upset and concerned when Marty leaves the zoo to find the wild. And when they all become stranded in Madagascar, Alex's hunger grows for meat, so with Marty being the closest thing to stake available he licks his rump in his sleep and in another scenario, bites him on the butt when he reverts to his primal instincts and in the second one, he confuses Marty with the other identical zebras multiple times, causing a strain on their friendship and finally there's their reconciliation near the end, where Alex finally manages to tell Marty from the rest of the zebra herd, [[spoiler:by his bite mark on Marty's rear from the last film.]]
** Julien's rather touchy-feely with Maurice in the first movie.
* LGBTFanbase:
** Alex the lion. The [[UsefulNotes/FurryFandom fandom]] of this movie didn't make it that unnoticeable.
** King Julian, who is more of a DepravedBisexual but otherwise acts like an absolutely ''[[CampGay flaming]]'' [[CampGay homosexual]].
* LoveItOrHateIt:
** Depending on who you ask, this is either a charming, robust little franchise, or an over-abundance of unfunny, uncharming schlock.
** The character designs. They're either humorously cartoony and make for great slapstick, or an eyesore that make the characters harder to relate to.
* {{Magnificent Bastard}}s: The Penguins.
* MemeticMutation:
** "Da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da-CIRCUS! Da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da-AFRO!".
** I like to move it move it! I like to move it move it! I like to move it move it! Ya like to...
*** MOVE IT!
*** And it's rather telling the credits to the third movie (along with the ads) uses a mashup [[EarWorm of both.]]
* {{Sequelitis}}: The sequels suffer from this according to some fans, though not according to critics in fact, [[EvenBetterSequel each sequel has a progressively higher rating]] on Website/RottenTomatoes.
* SignatureSong:
** "I Like To Move It" for the entire series and the first film.
** Meanwhile, the instrumental piece "Zoosters Breakout" by Hans Zimmer is the instrumental piece that is the SignatureSong for the entire series.
* {{Woolseyism}}:
** In the original English during the first film's MeadowRun scene, Marty says: "Sugar Honey Ice Tea!" ([[DontExplainTheJoke it's an acronym]]). In the Spanish dub, he says: "‎Miércoles!" ("Wednesday"), a common Spanish euphemism for "tercoles" (and "mierda" is Spanish for "shit", so the acronym joke is replaced with a [[LastSecondWordSwap Last Second Vowel Swap]]).
** In German they use "Himmel, Arm und Wolkenbruch (heaven, arm and cloudburts)", which everyone will be able to tell you is what adults turn "Himmel, Arsch (ass) und Wolkenbruch" into when kids are around. It's the same principal as "Scheibenkleister" and "Scheiße". You know "Schhhh...eibenkleister." "Sshhhh...eeesh."

!! [[{{VideoGame/Madagascar}} The games]]:
* GameBreaker: Gloria in the GBA game. While not as mobile as the others (Marty has better jump height and can run, while Alex and Melman both have access to double jumps) Gloria is a lot more useful. On top of having a ShockwaveStomp that has some serious range and being the only character with SuperNotDrowningSkills, she also has a GoombaStomp from the moment you can play as her that is absolutely broken. It starts the moment Gloria starts decending, is a OneHitKill on most enemies, and is the only attack in the game that can destroy the [[EverythingTryingToKillYou razor grass]] on the island. In fact you can beat most levels playing as Gloria just by walking along the bottom edge of the map, since she makes most of the danger from the levels easily avoidable while occasionally switching over to Alex or Marty when they're needed.
* GoodBadBugs: Right after the crashlanding and before you enter the Serengeti proper in ''Escape 2 Africa'' game, Alex gets to fight the scorpions on the way. For some reason, one ends up immortal and cannot be defeated by any means.
* SidetrackedByTheGoldenSaucer: Some people mainly play the first game for the golf and shuffleboarding [[MiniGame minigames]].

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