These are what we call the 'YMMV items.' Things that some people find in this work. We call them 'your mileage might vary' because not everyone sees these things in the same way. This starts discussions in the trope lists, a thing we don't want. Please use the discussion page if you'd like to discuss any of these items.
A small cluster of fans think that Weiss is a Tsundere, and that's why she acts so abrasive to Ruby. It's a common subject for forum jokes. Either that, or a Jerkass Woobie.
After Episode 12, some people are starting to think of Jaune as less of an underdog and more of a thick-headed Glory Hound than anything else. Though this lessened after he admitted to being a jerk and apologizing.
Arc Fatigue: In Volume One, the Jaune arc: Episodes 11 and 12: "Jaunedice" and Episodes 13 and 14: "Forever Fall" showing Cardin being The Bully to Jaune (even with the finale) was judged by various fans to take entirely too long and redundant given Jaune's behavior in Episode 8 against a Death Stalker, and taking away any spotlight from other characters by taking up a quarter of the sixteen-episode volume.
Art Evolution: Already noticeable in Volume 2. Character animation has improved greatly, environments look better, and even the models themselves appear to be in higher detail.
Adam immediately developed a bad rep from the fans from his role in the Black trailer. Fans felt that Blake should've gotten more opportunities to shine, bemoaning how it was he who took out the Spider Tank instead. They may show interest in his role for the story and his connection with Blake, but even in this case, they're turned away due to his inexperienced voice acting.
Ruby is getting some of this as well, largely due to Designated Protagonist Syndrome. While she's a favorite among plenty of fans, others don't think she's deserving of leading the team (or the team and series essentially being named after her) due to her inexperience and personality. This isn't helped by her decreasing presence in the story after Episode 10.
Jaune: Originally seen as potentially one of the most likable and dynamic characters thanks to his lovable loser personality, his stretched out character arc turned a lot of fans against him, especially as it achieved almost nothing, and he had shown a calm, strategic side in episode 8 that didn't show up again in the volume.
Others praise his arc, saying it at least shows his character more and shows he has potential to be a competent fighter. Others argue it's nice to see a Butt Monkey trying hard to become better rather than being left in the background for the occasional joke.
Broken Base: Some of it is nitpicking, while others are more divisive.
The voice acting is easily the most contentious aspect of the series so far. The question is whether you're basing your complaints on the voice pitches or the voice acting. In a remarkable transition, Vocal Evolution has rendered much of the conversation obsolete.
Ruby's Perky Goth voice at the end of the Yellow trailer led to mixed reactions as well. The high-pitched, somewhat childish tone does fit her, admittedly, given her short height, youthful appearance and apparentcheerfulness. However, it doesn't mean people particularly like it either. Part of the blame can probably be attributed to the fact that the way she was presentedin the ''Red'' trailer suggested otherwise. Monty himself says that the "Red" trailer was more of a weapon resume than a character trailer; Ruby had no actual character in it. Of course, following episode 1, most people aren't complaining about it as much now due to Vocal Evolution and her personality becoming better established.
Her bitchy attitude during the first half of Season 1 caused some friction, especially from those who saw her trailer and pictured her as The Stoic lonely girl. Some like the extra fire (and the extra comedy that comes from her friction with other characters), but others dislike it on account of her being, well, a bitch when it isn't really needed. Finally seems to be lessening as of Episode 8.
Some people have a problem with Blake's behavior during 'The Stray' and 'Black & White', on account of them believing she throws an almost uncharacteristic temper tantrum at Weiss. Others defend her behavior, proclaiming that it was only natural for someone like Blake to eventually get fed up with Weiss' (not entirely unjustified) Fantastic Racism. Some feel that it was rather cold of her not to defend Velvet from Cardin (other than stare in silent contempt), while others say that her inaction isn't particularly different from how literally everybody else did nothing to Cardin (on screen, of course).
Another design and color comparison (but not personality), this time to Puella Magi Madoka Magica, there are some parallels drawn between Blake/Homura, Yang/Mami, Weiss/Sayaka and Pyrrha/Kyoko. The latter two pairs have similar weapons as well. But the comparison stops there though.
Yang's fighting style and weapon (and to a lesser extent her outfit) evokes that of Bullet from BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma. Speaking of Blaz Blue, Penny's choice of weapon and fighting style also evokes that of Mu-12.
Pyrrha is often compared to Agent Carolina of Red vs. Blue, a Web Animation also done by Rooster Teeth. Both red-haired, formidable fighters, and matching personality.
Being played by the same Actress doesn't hurt the comparison, either.
To a lesser extent she's also often compared to Erza Scarlet of Fairy Tail.
Can't think of a good covert distress signal? Consider a sloth. Need a mode of transportation? Ride an Ursa. Picking up a chess piece? Sing about it! Comrade can't make a proper jump? Destroy the bridge for propulsion. Team leader is being bullied? Offer to help by breaking the bully's legs. Not sure if Red Sap is edible or not? Consume an entire jar anyway. Nora is made of this.
Ruby counts as well for being the one to come up with the ridiculously awesome "SlingshotTrick".
Creepy Awesome: Cinder Fall, thanks to a surprisingly chilling performance by Jessica Nigri, a well-known cosplayer.
Designated Protagonist Syndrome: Interest in other characters than Ruby (particularly Team JNPR) has caused her to be eclipsed by the rest of the cast, but she's very much well-liked by the fandom nonetheless. The problem here is that, for a 16-episode first volume of a show called RWBY, some fans are concerned that (so far) the main focus is on Ruby, Jaune, Weiss and Pyrrha (in that order), as opposed to the titular team, although team RWBY started to return to focus in episode 15, specifically for Blake.
Die for Our Ship: Sun Wukong flirting with Blake and later having tea with her in episode 15 created a lot of hate from the Blake/Yang fans.
This has fortunately died done with the advent of Volume 2, and more specifically, the introduction of Sun's friend and confidant Neptune.
Melanie and Miltia (the former being a bit more popular between the two) are shaping up to be this. The twins already have a good amount of fan art, and quite a few fans hope that they have a recurring role in the actual series. They've been seen in the Volume 2 opening, so the chances are looking good.
Also, Nora of team JNPR is getting quite a fan-base, thanks to her goofiness and awesome weapon.
Velvet Scarlatina. Mere hours after she was revealed in Episode 11, she already had fanart and fanfics of her, along with a steady fanbase, from both sides of the ocean! Monty himself has responded to this one directly in the season 2 dev diary saying that due to Velvet's popularity she would get a stronger role in the series. It's to the point that, instead of trailers for Volume 2, there was instead a contest for Velvet's design, and then a simple teaser image of Velvet along with the silhouettes of her teammates.
Sun Wukong and Penny come at the top place for favorite secondary characters. Although when pitted against main characters, they still lost against Ruby and Blake.
Sun Wukong's weapon beats even Ruby's Crescent Rose. It only saw its action in one episode, even.
Sun Wukong comes in second for the favorite fighting style, next to Yang's.
He, again, comes on top for the most attractive male.
Adam has only been seen in a single promo trailer and yet he also has quite some following.
Roman Torchwick is also very popular despite his fairly limited screen time and few appearances, from Tumblr to 4Chan.
Evil Is Sexy: Cinder Fall◊, from what we see of her silhouette in the first episode and her full reveal in the The Stinger for the last. And surprisingly, Jessica Nigri even manages to make her sound sexy too.
Fan-Preferred Couple: Before the series came out, Ruby and Weiss were shipped together constantly. This was most likely caused by the Deviant ART author LunarisFuryAileron whose RWBY 4komas were featured on Monty's twitter a few times causing the pairing to spread quickly. This continued on even after Ruby and Weiss were revealed to have very different characterizations then what the fandom assumed. (The joke that Weiss is Tsundere isn't doing anything to discourage the shippers either.)
Growing the Beard: Despite the initial hype surrounding the series (or maybe because of it), the reaction to the first few episodes was decidedly... mixed, with there being numerous complaints concerning the voice acting, short episode lengths, sparse (for a Monty Oum production) animation, and use of stock anime tropes. Still, the series soldiered on, steadily improving as it went. And then Episode 8 was released...
Weiss gives a long list of attacks on her family that made her life difficult growing up. The train robbery she mentions coincides strongly with the events of the Black trailer.
Blake's comments about the Schnee Dust Company's questionable business partners and controversial labor practices make a whole lot more sense given that, being a Faunus and in the White Fang, she would have found out a lot of their secrets/been on the receiving end of their cruelty and prejudice.
Ruby's theme becomes a lot darker after Red Like Roses Part II. "It's your blood that's red like roses."
Some fans are praising Jessica Nigri, best known as a cosplay model, for making Cinder sound absolutely terrifying with about three lines.
Michael Jones of Achievement Hunter did a fairly impressive job voicing Sun, considering he's not usually an actor nor has he done any voice acting prior (and was apparently adorkably nervous about doing it.)
Months before Lie Ren was revealed, a prominent fan character was created. His identifying color is green, he is stoic (albeit far more so than Ren), and wields dual bladed pistols. During an interview, the crew mentioned that they have seen him and that these sort of things just happen.
Holy Shit Quotient: Very high, especially in the climactic battles in episodes 8, 14, and 16 of Volume One.
Hype Backlash: Let's be honest. You promote a series for half a year done by big shots like Rooster Teeth and Monty Oum and there will inevitably be those who feel the final product doesn't live up to all the hype. See Cliché Storm above.
Something Completely Different: This trope may be a reason why. About the only similarities RWBY has to Red vs. Blue (Rooster Teeth's previous, widely loved series) is that they both have frequent comedy and cool fight scenes. In everything else, they're quite different.
Also crosses with Fanon. The trailers were released over nine months, and by the first episode's premiere, there were a lot of fan theories and characterization guesses floating around. When these fans watched the series, most of these theories were jossed in short order (Weiss and Ruby's personalities being the most obvious example) and it came as a bit of a shock. Now, whether or not such jossing is welcome, that's another story.
Blake/Yang is referred to as Bumblebee (or Bumble BY), in most circles. Meanwhile, Ruby/Weiss is referred to as White Rose and Candycane, with the former being more common by a wide margin. Blake/Ruby is commonly called Ladybug or sometimes Black Rose, Weiss/Yang is almost exclusively called Freezerburn, Blake/Weiss is Monochrome or Checkmating, with the former being more common. Ruby/Yang is called Enabler, or alternatively Yellow Rose, Pumpkin or Siscest (for obvious reasons).
A popular ship name for all four girls as an OT4 is Pollination, combining the theme of Bumbleby and White Rose.
A small segment that ships Weiss/Black/Yang as a plain threesome refers to them by the absolutely puntastic moniker "The Bee's Schnees"
Penny/Emerald is Verdigris (pennies are made of copper which can turn into the green material, verdigris).
Alternately, when characters in RWBY are shipped together, the pairing is referred to by the color that would result in their mixing.
Weiss/Blake: Grey, or Monochrome.
Rainbow: The whole team.
After Volume 2 came out, "SeaMonkeys" was suggested for Sun/Neptune.
Internet Backdraft: The announcement that RWBY would not be released to the general public for two weeks after its RTX premiere had this effect. The backdraft probably wouldn't have been so bad if they hadn't announced this change 11 days before the premiere after more than half a year of hype.
The length of the episodes in Volume 1 has become a point of contention. It should be said that the team that worked on Volume 1 consists of 10 people and not all of them animators. The latter half of the Volume, which consisted of minimal action and a focus on school drama did not help matters.
The length issue was addressed for Volume 2 with the announcement that every episode will be at least 12 minutes. This was accompanied the announcement that they may go to a biweekly release schedule in order to ensure each episode is ready.
LGBT Fanbase: Well, It has a mostly female cast and a predominantly male fanbase, as well as a queer female fanbase in Tumblr.
Memetic Badass: According to a steadily growing core of fans, Roman Torchwick never stopped being top dog of the antagonists, is only toying with Cinder by pretending to be unaware and compliant with her nebulous grand scheme as he builds up his dragon's horde of Dust, that furthermore his humoring her is the only thing that is keeping her in a position of power at all, he can pimp-slap any of the heroes into submission without missing a beat no matter the odds, could pickpocket the whole cast blind without a single person becoming aware, rules over all human and Faunus gangs alike with Machiavellian absolute authority, and also he can get any girl to drop their panties for him, no doubt about it.
Great Weiss SharkExplanation A tumblr user combined a gif of Weiss slowly appearing behind Ruby in episode 3 with Jaws music. Puns quickly followed, and Weiss suddenly became associatedwithgreat whites. At this point there even exists an RP blog for a shark Faunus Weiss.
Some fans like to portray Ozpin as a Troll after seeing his reaction◊ to Jaune flailing helplessly in the air.
"We'll break his legs!"
Ren falling face flat onto the ground.
Blake being fed up with everyone around her making cat puns.
Volume 2, now with DIVERSITY!Explanation A few early screens of Volume 2 revealed that there are now multicultural characters, burying complaints about every character being distinctly white.
Misaimed Fandom: Apparently fans are less interested in the plot or the characters than they are with the fact that two sisters have different surnames. A humorous, harmless example, all things considered.
The wikia forums has gave a joke name to the Ruby/Jaune ship, known as Arse (Arc + Rose) shipping. And they also add S.S. in front of the ships' names.
Barbara (Yang's VA) once used "Blang" (for Blake/Yang) on a twitter pic of her and Arryn (Blake's VA).
Ship Mates: Within the fandom, it's not uncommon to find Ruby/Weiss shippers that also support Blake/Yang. Of course, this isn't limited to Team RWBY members; you're likely to find supporters of Jaune/Pyrrha and/or Ren/Nora. The trend seems to continue even if you mix and match.
If someone ships Sun/Neptune, you can bet with certainty that they were and are big fans of a pairing of Blake and one of her teammates first.
The first version of each episode, released on Rooster Teeth, has its errors recorded by the writers on said wiki. A week later, a cleaner version of the episode with less errors is released on YouTube.
The animation itself has also been decried as being stiff and lacking in fluidity outside of the fight scenes.
Almost every character has the same basic run animation for non action sequences. Granted, this is common in full budget video games as well, but it can be a bit glaring. The best example would be when the two teams are late for class, and eight characters have the same movements, though that might have been played for laughs.
Sweet Dreams Fuel: So far, the series can be seen as this. The setting is dark, yes, and multiple threats prey upon humankind, but there's a lot of comedic and heartwarming moments to balance that out, and heroism and epic deeds are the order of the day. In some ways, it's a very optimistic series- although Cerebus Syndrome may well occur in future episodes.
Don't you worry about the dark / I will light up the night / With the love in my heart / I will burn like the sun / I will keep you safe and warm...
Tainted by the Preview: Some viewers were turned off by the inexperienced voice acting in the Black and Yellow trailers.
Take That, Scrappy!: Cardin finally receives a little retribution in the episode Forever Fall pt. 2: Jaune finally growing a spine to stand up to him, his teammates running away from an incoming Ursa and leaving him behind, said Ursa giving him a beating, and then being saved by his own bully victim.
The Untwist: After all the subtle and unsubtle hints that Blake is a Faunus, it was theorized that she was not a Faunus herself, but merely connected to them in some way. Turns out, no, she really is a Cat Faunus.
Cinder's reveal as the Big Bad: While there's not a lot of buildup or misleading per se, the second volume's Spoiler Opening places her very prominently in comparison to Roman, the supposed Big Bad up until then.
They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: In "The Stray" and "Black and White" (Episodes 15-16), the first part seems to point towards settling issues between Blake and Weiss by establishing conflicting backgrounds, but the second ends up being about Blake confronting her previous affiliations on her own, with Ruby only showing up near the end to highlight a completely unrelated character's move set, when it would have been far more effective for Weiss to encounter Blake fighting and help her, thus showing that Weiss cares more about their friendship than Blake's past. Instead, Weiss spends most of the episode simply mumbling about how Blake is as guilty as the group she previously belonged to, only to randomly come in at the end and reconcile with her for no adequately explained reason other than it was the end of the volume. Granted, reconciling with someone is not the same as forgiving them; it's implied Weiss simply chose to put the team before her own personal feelings, although a very brief "Bah, fine, I'll let it slide" scene would've been helpful for clarification.
What Do You Mean, It's Not Political?: The White Fang, a Western Terrorists group that gives a bad name to an established minority group. Related, Weiss, a character represented by the color white, is presented as a racist, while Blake, who is represented by black, is a member of the group.
It doesn't help that exposition in episode 16 reveals that despite Faunus officially being recognized as equal, they are still commonly mistreated. Even worse, it's mentioned that Schnee industries used "Faunus labor" and with the way it was said and how Blake mentioned back in episode 2 that the company was at the center of a lot of controversy, it's implied that the workers are either overworked, underpaid, have poor safety conditions, or may even be corporate slaves. It really does seem similar to how slavery was outlawed after the American Civil War, but not long after the Jim Crow laws were passed, creating more or less slavery in all but name.
Win Back the Crowd: Some announcements about the production of Volume 2 seem to an attempt at this. Volume 2 will have 12 episodes that are all around 12 minutes each (to address the very common 'short episode' complaint Volume 1 was hit with). Also, apparently the animation will be improved as well thanks to Monty's new character rig set-up.
Velvet's introductory scene has her getting harassed by Team CRDL for being a Faunus, culminating to Cardin's aforementioned ear pulling. The poor girl had to leave the cafeteria humiliated and presumably in tears.
Having lied to get into Beacon, having no actual combat training and now being blackmailed by Cardin, Jaune is fast steering into this territory.
As of Episode 15, Blake appears to be heading in this direction, having been revealed to be a Faunus, subjected to Fantastic Racism by Weiss, and seeming to feel isolated from her team. Somewhat ironed out in the following episode, but there's still plenty of Woobie fuel.