Americans Hate Tingle: Professional critical reviews ran the gamut in North America, including a few raves, but in England it was completely panned for being excessively tacky and lacking in standout acrobatics; that it was presented in the massive O2 Arena didn't help. The show completely bombed in China, a market Cirque has found notoriously hard to crack.
Critic-Proof: Even in England, where reviews ranged from disappointed to vicious, this show drew big crowds owing to Michael Jackson's wide, often extremely loyal, fanbase. The key exception to this was China.
A common theme in comments at Ticketmaster and even professional reviews is that the show gave too much stage time to Jackson's post-1980s output, which many listeners aren't familiar with and/or simply don't like as much as the earlier work — they're Just Here for the Hits. For example, "Billie Jean" doesn't get a full production number, but "Earth Song" does. Tellingly, there were enough complaints that Cirque president Daniel Lamarre went on record as saying that Michael Jackson ONEwould focus on the bigger hits at length, rather than taking this show's "mixtape" approach.
Alternatively, there are fans of Cirque du Soleil (or just circus in general) who were Just There for the Acrobats. They tend to leave unhappy, and matters only worsened when several acts were cut in the overseas Retool.
Tainted by the Preview: The announcement of both shows had the Cirque fanbase up in arms, primarily for 1) being yet moreJukebox Musical variants after LOVE and Viva Elvis, suggesting a chronic lack of originality on the part of Cirque, 2) coming off as a money grab for both Cirque and Jackson's estate, as he hadn't been dead a year when they were announced, and 3) being based on the work of a figure who was extremely controversial in life.
What Do You Mean, It's Not for Kids?: A drinking game could be made out of finding reviews at Ticketmaster by parents upset about a bikini-clad pole dancer/acrobat ("Dangerous") turning up in a "family" show. The show was not marketed to families, but to the concertgoing market. The confusion arose from 1) Cirque du Soleil shows usually being family-friendly and 2) Jackson's work being an example of What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?, since it was actively marketed to them despite often-adult themes and choreography from Thriller onwards.