YMMV / Robin Hood

YMMV in general:

  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: While Robin Hood started as a figure of English folklore, he is popular around the world, as are the many adaptations of his stories.

YMMV for the 1973 Disney film:

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Was Sir Hiss' reaction to the idea of hanging Friar Tuck a case of Even Evil Has Standards or a case of Pragmatic Villainy?
  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: The Sexton's wife (a mouse) giving their last farthing to the empty poor-box and Friar Tuck is deeply touched.
    Friar Tuck: Your last farthing? Little Sister, no-one can can give more than that! Bless you both.
    • With a little bit of Fridge Brilliance, one can realize that this exact argument was made by Jesus in the lesson of the Widow's Mite in Mark 12 and Luke 21.
  • Critical Dissonance: It's very polarizing among critics and historians (and the Disney animators themselves), but nonetheless it was a big financial hit and loved by generations of Disney fans.
  • Cult Classic: The film is considered by most to be average at best, but it does have its fans. This film being the premiere release of Walt Disney Home Video's The Classics series in 1984 and resurfacing in 1991 to capitalize on Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves's release helped, and Robin Hood himself got a Spiritual Successor in Zootopia's Nick Wilde.
  • Dueling Movies: An odd example with Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves due to the marketing campaign for the Walt Disney Classics VHS reissue of Disney's Robin Hood lobbing a Take That to the theatrical release by claiming IT was the Robin Hood hit of the summer.
  • Ear Worm: Roger Miller's "Whistle Stop" (the song used during the film's opening), especially after a vocal sample was sped up and Sampled Up for the Hamster Dance. (One AOL Radio journalist even claimed that this Hampster Dance was an "annoying-on-purpose, chipmunks-on-speed bit of nonsense" and "the grandfather of today's 'Rickroll'.")
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Robin's hat is too big for Skippy, and King Richard's crown is too big for Prince John. If you look closely, one of Skippy's animators is Don Bluth, who went on to use similar imagery in An American Tail.
    • A Disney movie with a lion who is a king... You don't think?
    • A scrawny lion who is jealous of his stronger brother, has tons of Mommy Issues and creates a serious problem with fire... that sounds familiar.
    • Building on the aforementioned; a noble lion king who tolerates his resentful, smaller, weaker brother to be close to him, only to then be deposed by way of said brother's treacherous scheming. Are we talking about King Richard and Prince John, or about Mufasa and Scar?
    • Hmm, for new Disney fans, Robin Hood looks a bit familiar
  • Ho Yay: Sir Hiss cheers up Prince John by using his tongue to tickle Prince John's ear, and when Little John in disguise befriends Prince John, Sir Hiss was extremely jealous. Hiss doesn't do it intentionally (he is a snake, after all), and while it does tickle PJ, he finds it annoying. On the other hand, the fact that Hiss sleeps in John's bedroom with him, for no discernible reason, is a bit...questionable. (He trusted him that much?)
    • And he identifies Robin Hood at the tournament by looking up into his disguise. From the rear.
    • The film's Ambiguously Gay portrayal of Prince John is kind of funny, considering that historically speaking, Richard's the one whose sexuality is up for debate.
  • Love to Hate: Prince John and the Sheriff. Both comical villains who enjoy their evil so much it's hard not to enjoy it with them.
  • Memetic Mutation: Anyone remember The Hampster Dance? Guess what the original sample was from.
  • Moral Event Horizon: While Prince John is mostly Laughably Evil, when he decides to hang Friar Tuck to lure Robin out, even Sir Hiss is shocked.
    • Given that the Church was an independent political entity that would object to this simply for the affront of a noble executing a priest on his own authority rather than attempting to have him punished via church law, there are reasons other than morality to be shocked by such an order. Not to mention that it could also be seen as an affront to God himself!
    • Interesting historical context: John and Richard's father, Henry II, allegedly ordered the Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas à Becket, assassinated. Certainly not an excuse (especially since Henry II simply misspoke out of annoyance at the wrong time in reality), but can possibly be a reason why Prince John would even consider it. Though the political uproar it caused might also be considered a good reason why Prince John should know better.
    • The Sheriff sort of crossed it himself by taking money (one farthing, no less!) from the church's poor box (during a time period when Churches were tax-exempt)... and then arrests Friar Tuck for "high treason to the crown" when the good priest, having finally lost his patience, goes at him and fights him!
  • Narm Charm: Friar Tuck's sudden outburst of "GET OUTTA MY CHURCH!" is Narm for some. For others, it's a Crowning Moment Of Awesome. Given that this was Andy Devine doing his voice, it's bound to have either reaction.
  • Nightmare Fuel: John going Ax-Crazy against Sir Hiss. Having a Psychopathic Manchild chasing you through a castle that is burning to the ground is probably not a very pleasant experience. The thumb sucking somehow made it worse.
  • Older Than They Think: There are two lion brothers. One's the king, and his brother, resentful of him, manages to get him out of the throne, so he can claim it himself. After he does, things go downhill, making everyone hate him. Sound familiar? Amusingly, this may be more coincidence (or a result of historical, literary, and iconographical references) than a deliberate echo—Robin Hood is based on English history, Lion King on Hamlet which is an English play, and England (particularly its kings) has long been associated with lions, both in symbolism and heraldry.
  • Sampled Up: As described under Ear Worm, a vocal sample from the opening "Whistle Stop" song was sped up and interpolated in the famous Hamster Dance song, though casual listeners might not recognize the sample in its context.
  • So Okay, It's Average: The critics' reaction to the film at the time it premiered.
  • Special Effects Failure: The development process for Robin Hood ended up forcing the animators to recycle animation from other movies to make up for the bare-bones budget they were given...and boy does it show. Notice how in the last shot of Phoney King of England, Maid Marian's framerate is different from the rest.
  • Squick: Alan-a-Dale can bend his knees in both directions!'
    • Boy, if the Sheriff had won the archery tournament....
  • Tearjerker: "Not in Nottingham" is hardcore for a song from a Disney movie.
    I'm inclined to believe
    if we weren't so down
    we'd up and leave.
    We'd up and fly if we had wings for flyin'
    Can't you see the tears we're cryin'?
    Can't there be some happiness for me?
    Not in Nottingham.
    • "Love" is bittersweet at best, depressing at worst. It's about how time flies, life is short, and only love lasts forever...not exactly the best accompaniment to Robin and Marian's happy moonlit stroll at the start of their new life together.
    • The moment when Robin is due to be executed is surprisingly poignant. Marian pleads Please Spare Him, My Liege!, claiming she loves him. Prince John scoffs and asks if Robin even loves her back. Cue an aching heartbeat of silence as Marian tearfully waits for his answer — which is of course "Marian my darling, I love you more than life itself."
  • Vindicated by Cable: Due to its original lackluster standing and not doing well in theatrical reissues, Disney decided very quickly to release Robin Hood as the premiere film in The Classics: Walt Disney Home Video/Walt Disney Classics series in 1984 since they didn't feel it had much future in theaters (there were some serious plans on releasing Robin Hood on VHS even before Eisner, Wells, and Katzenberg entered the Disney lot). This made it a decent hit and set the stage for Pinocchio's subsequent video release, which changed the game altogether. Robin Hood did very well on video overall and was eventually released from the Vault, becoming a serious darkhorse in the canon, and that VHS and subsequent tapes helped build towards 2016's Zootopia with Nick Wilde; that film is one of the highest grossing and highest rated films of 2016.
  • What an Idiot: Prince John is one of the least competent villains in the Disney canon for a lot of reasons. It becomes very clear in his first scene, when his coach runs into Robin Hood and Little John dressed in drag, advertising fortune-telling.
    • You'd Expect Everyone in the royal convoy to ignore them and keep moving, noting that the "Fortune Tellers" look rather strange, and one of them (Little John) has a very masculine voice for a woman.
    • Instead Only Sir Hiss is suspicious, but is shut down and then locked in a casket by Prince John, who buys Robin Hood's "fortune telling", hook, line, and sinker, and invites him into the coach. The procession is subsequently robbed blind by Robin and John, even taking the prince's clothes. Just for good measure, they also steal the gold hubcaps on the coach's wheels, which disables it and drops Prince John into the muddy road in the ensuing mad dash.
    • Then Later, towards the end of the film, the Sheriff arrests Friar Tuck, and Prince John concocts a plan to use Tuck to bring Robin Hood to him. They condemn Tuck to die, and then set up the gallows and guards for Hood's impending arrival.
      • You'd Expect Everybody in the castle to take their caffeine pills and stay awake through the night, likely knowing that's when Hood will strike, and they'll be alert and ready for him.
      • Instead The place is rather empty, and only about twenty rhinos, ten wolves and TWO vultures are actually awake and patrolling. Prince John, Sir Hiss, and the Sheriff are definitely asleep, since they are seen like that. The vultures are quickly taken out of the picture, and, while Little John rescues the townsfolk prisoners including Tuck, Robin Hood climbs into Prince John's bedroom and loots it like the coach at the beginning of the film. Hiss finally wakes up, and starts a commotion that brings the guards out, but in the ensuing battle, the Sheriff sets fire to the castle tower, destroying it and at least damaging the castle itself. Robin Hood escapes within an inch of his life, and with all the tax money and prisoners.

YMMV for the 2006 BBC version of Robin Hood:

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Guy of Gisborne's perceived characterization can range from anything between misunderstood woobie to sadistic killer.
    • This even happens within the show itself to some degree. After three seasons of snapping from one characterisation to the other like a light-switch most of the fandom just shrugged and picked whatever interpretation they liked best.
  • Angst Dissonance: Throughout season one Robin is haunted by his memories of war in the Holy Land, struggling with nightmares, post-traumatic stress, and survivor's guilt. At the end of season two his beloved Marian is stabbed through the stomach and dies in his arms, something that is only intermittently referred to in series 3, even though she dies in the Holy Land, the source of his entire first-season angst.
  • Angst? What Angst?: After Marian's murder Robin goes on a vengeance-fuelled rampage. Then...he gets over it. He's back to his cheerful old self by the next episode, in which he meets his new Love Interest.
    • As it turns out, he's always been this way. In the Whole Episode Flashback, he's shown as a child, smiling and laughing amidst a group of cheering peasants...approximately five minutes after his father's apparent death
  • Anticlimax Boss: Although Prince John was played by Toby Stephens, which automatically makes his entire performance a Crowning Moment of Funny, it was also true that John was less menacing than the Sheriff of Nottingham and just as easily bested by the outlaws. Foppish and cowardly, Prince John is eventually run out of Nottingham with his tail between his legs.
  • Ass Pull: Where Tuck gets the explosive needed to destroy Nottingham castle from in Something Worth Fighting For is seen as this, although there was some attempt to explain it in-story.
    • The canopies (sun-visors?) on the parapets of Nottingham Castle that never existed until Robin needed one to use as a hang-glider.
  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: Kate invents CPR. Robin invents hang-gliding.
  • Cargo Ship: In season 1, the Sheriff asks Guy if he's jealous of Marian's horse. The two men are watching her from a window as she grooms it.
  • Creator's Pet: Kate. Her purpose in the show was to be the the Token Girl, the Damsel in Distress and the Satellite Love Interest, in that order, and in the most obnoxious ways possible. Her astounding stupidity and utter uselessness were bad enough, but the worst of it was that Kate was simply Not A Very Nice Person, despite the writers' desperate attempts to shill the contrary.
    • The writers seemed to think that if enough outlaws fell madly in love with Kate (who at various points call her: "a treasure," "a good fighter," "amazing", and "brave, compassionate and beautiful"), the audience would too. They didn't.
      • And "perfect." Don't forget the perfect, spoken before Kate joined the band (and only in the second episode with her in it!) Oh, Much.
      • She even gets to shill herself a couple of times, telling John that "I'm not some stupid girl," and Much that "I can take care of myself." Both statements are patently untrue.
      • The audio books also go nuts with the Kate shilling. The Dambusters opens with the following declaration: “Kate, what a wonderful companion, fighter, friend, wit, beauty.” You'd be excused for thinking that the narrator was being sarcastic.
    • Though it does feel like we were thrown a bit of a bone at the very end of the show, as Robin refuses to so much as look back at her as he heads off to die alone, permanently reunited with Marian.
  • Crowning Moment of Awesome: Robin destroys Nottingham Castle with a single arrow in the Grand Finale. Extra points for doing so whilst a lethal poison that will kill him in about fifteen minutes' time is running through his body.
  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: Robin waiting in Marian's room after her father's death and comforting her as she weeps before telling her that he has a horse waiting to take her to Sherwood Forest.
  • Crowning Moment of Funny: All of the series 3 episode Do You Love Me?, including anything Prince John says or does, Gisborne and the Sheriff's suspicions that the other may have poisoned their meal, and Gisborne's gloriously camp little wave after the Sheriff accidentally hits a villager with an arrow he intended for Gisborne.
  • Cry for the Devil: Guy and Isabella in the Whole Episode Flashback are portrayed as socially awkward and ostracized kids. In the finale Guy strokes his sister's hair and later Isabella casts a regretful glance over her brother's body, reminding the audience that (as Isabella said earlier) they loved each other once.
  • Damsel Scrappy: Kate. Kate. A hundred times Kate!
  • Die for Our Ship: Whether Marian was better off with Guy or with Robin is a debate that still rages in forums to this day, despite the fact that all three characters are now dead.
    • There was also some squabbling over the Will/Djaq/Allan Love Triangle, and who was the best partner (if any) for Kate.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Guest-star Carter, a crusader looking for vengeance...then redemption (which unfortunately came in the form of Redemption Equals Death).
    • Also Meg. Also killed.
    • Will and Djaq. Managed to survive the carnage by being Put on a Bus.
      • In fact, many - if not most - of the one-shot guest stars ended up being more popular than many of the main characters, including Matilda, the German Count, Meg, Carter, Queen Eleanor, the Fool, Benjamin Palmer, Davina, Eve, and Sir Jasper.
  • Evil Is Sexy: Guy of Gisborne and Isabella.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: In an early first season episode, reluctant hero Allan-a-Dale asks: "What is the point of all of us dying?" as a way of getting out of a rescue mission. In season three he dies the most pointless, meaningless death imaginable.
    • Foz Allen and Dominic Minghella are on record for stating that Friar Tuck was omitted in seasons one and two because they "didn't want a comic relief character". When Tuck is finally introduced, he ends up being utterly humorless.
  • He's Just Hiding: There were quite a few "Marian's not dead" theories floated following the series 2 finale.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Anyone who has seen The Vicar of Dibley will know that this is not the first time Richard Armitage has been punched in the face at the altar on his wedding day.
  • Ho Yay: Much, much? Plus the Sheriff and Guy to a considerable extent.
    • And Guy and Allan in series 2.
    • Prince John.
    • Robin and Guy, combining the trope with Foe Yay, as this proves.
  • It Was His Sled: Gisborne kills Marian.
  • Magnificent Bastard: The Sheriff and Prince John.
    • Isabella certainly qualifies as a Magnificent Bitch. In only five episodes as the Sheriff of Nottingham, she manages to achieve more than the old Sheriff did in two and a half seasons, and is the individual directly responsible for the deaths of Allan, Robin, Guy and Thornton.
  • Memetic Mutation: Has magnified a lot of Kate's negative traits.
    • Particularly the forehead braid (which she only had for three episodes) and the "e keeled mah bruvvah!" line (which she only said a couple of times).
  • Misaimed Fandom: A large portion (though not all) of the Guy/Marian shippers. Despite capitalizing on the actors' chemistry with some Ship Tease between Guy and Marian, the writers were very careful to ensure that Robin and Marian had a respectful and reciprocal relationship, whilst Guy's and Marian's was riddled with violence, threats, blackmail, intimidation, betrayals and hurt feelings. However, there is still a portion of the fandom that argue that Marian should have ended up with Guy, an opinion that can be divided into two distinct arguments: those that believe Guy was an accurate portrayal of a socially-awkward 12th century knight, who was therefore justified in everything he did regarding Marian (a view that requires steadfast denial of the show's Anachronism Stew), and those that paint him as a Draco in Leather Pants, who acted the way he did thanks to his Freudian Excuse, with Marian regarded as an ungrateful bitch for not appreciating him.
    • Though there are exceptions, the former group's fanfiction usually follows the basic "rape fantasy" scenario, in which Marian is forced to marry Guy against her will, only to find out that he's quite an acrobat in the bedroom, whilst the latter group either has Marian apologize for to him for her behavior, then treat him to some Redemptive Sex, or cuts out Marian and pairs Guy with a self-insert character.
  • Narm: Oh. So. Much. Actually, much of the Narm in the first two seasons (which were rather tongue-in-cheek) would probably be considered Narm Charm, but after the intense Mood Whiplash of the S2 finale in which Marian is brutally impaled on a sword, the fact that many subsequent episodes still include ridiculous scenarios results in a veritable onslaught of Narmtastic scenes.
    • Special mention must go to Guy's "secret weapon" that he plans to use to kill Robin Hood. He's carting around a sinister-looking box, as Prince John's elite team of soldiers surround the outlaws. The box opens...and out comes the oldest, tiniest, mangiest, most worn-out lion you've ever seen in your life. The outlaws react with terror as the decrepit beast waddles toward them at a snail's pace, looking like it just wants to find a quiet place to lie down and die.
    • Robin hang-gliding from the castle parapets. It's played for laughs, but it still destroys brain-cells.
    • Whenever Kate has an emotional scene, especially if she has the forehead braid on at the time.
  • Nightmare Retardant: The lion. Seriously, if the outlaws had wanted to kill it, all they would've had to do was kick it over. Gently.
  • Older Than They Think: The idea of Gisborne murdering Marian was one of the ideas for the cancelled fourth series of Robin of Sherwood.
    • Robin of Sherwood also had Guy and Robin (actually the second one) as half-brothers. And the idea of Middle Eastern outlaw started with that show.
    • This Marian likes to dress up in disguise and go gallivanting around the countryside; in one of the very earliest ballads that featured Marian, she dresses up in disguise and fights Robin to a stand-still in Sherwood Forest.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Or rather, one episode wonder; Legrande.
  • Replacement Scrappy: Kate, who as the replacement of Marian (as Robin's girlfriend), Djaq (as the girl of the group) and Will (as the voice of the peasantry) was utterly doomed to embody this trope. It didn't help that she was also a text-book example of a Faux Action Girl, everybody's Satellite Love Interest and The Load, with a knack for getting kidnapped, a ridiculous hairstyle, a whiny voice, and the Informed Ability of an imagination. She was not a very popular character.
  • Rescued from the Scrappy Heap: Meta example. Joanne Froggatt was never given the chance to rescue Kate from the Scrappy Heap, but she went on to portray the immensely popular Anna in Downton Abbey, a character that bears several passing similarities to Kate.
  • Ron the Death Eater: What usually happens to Robin in Guy/Marian fan-fic. Amusingly enough, by making Robin a jealous, self-centered, possessive, egotistical, violent man in order to consolidate Guy/Marian, Robin ends up being indistinguishable from canon!Guy.
  • Rooting for the Empire
  • Ship Sinking: Despite being one of the most popular ships among the fandom (and at times, among the writers too), the Guy/Marian ship is eventually sunk by Guy himself, not just when he kills her but when he admits to Robin with his dying breath that "she was always yours." Robin then goes on to reunite with Marian in Heaven, at which point she tells him that she'll be his wife "now and forever, my love." Could a ship possibly get more sunk than Guy/Marian?
  • Shocking Swerve: The end of season two, wherein Marian is killed off. It didn't go down quite as well as Foz Allen and Dominic Minghella had hoped...
  • So Bad, It's Good: To some viewers. According to Dead Ringers:
    "And now on BBC One with a brand new series of Robin Hood; where we've taken a much-loved classic tale, given it a pithy 20th century makeover, and made it shit."
  • Special Effect Failure: The lion (although to be absolutely fair, the director does try his best to work around the fact that it's the most harmless, half-dead specimen imaginable).
  • Strangled by the Red String: Will and Djaq's relationship is given subtle foreshadowing throughout season two, leading to a declaration of love that was considered too sudden, too corny and completely out of character for both of them in what is widely known as the Barn Scene of Ick .
    • Robin and Isabella's first meeting is accompanied by a musical cue that's about as subtle as an anvil drop, and the episode concludes in a Narmtastic scene in which Robin confronts her about the fact that she's Gisborne's sister. He grabs her by the face, pushes her back into a tree, and acts so betrayed and angry that looks as though he's angsting over a woman he's been dating for three months instead of someone he's known for approximately five minutes.
      • Much's immediate and inexplicable infatuation with Kate.
  • Tearjerker: Gisborne's death saving Robin and by extension all the townspeople, where he finally admits that Marian was 'always Robin's', and then Robin's death and his final farewells to the gang... well John and Much at least... a few minutes later.
    • This. You don't need to have seen a single second of this show to get choked up at the long-awaited reunion of the two legendary lovers.
    • Allan's death, a heartbreaking and tragic end where he dies trying to be a hero but failing.
    • Allan's reaction to his brother's death. Despite the fact that Tom has given him nothing but trouble, it is made obvious that he still cared and was devastated by his death.
  • The Woobie: Guy sometimes, Djaq often, Much always.
  • Too Cool to Live: Meg.
  • Trapped by Mountain Lions: For two episodes in season three Guy of Gisborne was entirely absent due to Richard Armitage's commitments with Spooks. The Story Arc couldn't proceed without him, which led to the writers marking off time with two negligible episodes in his absence, first in which the outlaws try to rescue a copy of the Bible translated into English, and then in rescuing Kate multiple times from an evil tax collector. Excepting the contrivance of Kate joining the outlaws and some minor background for Tuck, neither episode adds anything to the arc of the season and can easily be skipped.
    • Kate's entire presence is one very long Trapped by Mountain Lions arc. Her scenes could be exorcised completely from season 3 with absolutely no impact made on the overarching storyline. Her frequent kidnappings are padding, her love story with Robin is pointless, and the odd occasion in which she is allowed to be mildly useful involves her doing things that could have just as easily been achieved by another outlaw (like finding a MacGuffin or causing a distraction). There is nothing involving Kate herself (that is, something that only her character could have done) that in any way shapes the course of the season's Story Arc.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Djaq. Oh my God, Djaq.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Isabella is clearly meant to be entirely unsympathetic by the end of the show's run, thereby justifying Robin and Guy's (successful) attempt to kill her. In that case, it probably wasn't such a good idea to have her backstory consist of Guy selling her into an abusive marriage to a sadistic rapist at the age of thirteen, or to have Robin constantly flip-flopping in regards to his attitude and behaviour toward her. Even her ordering the execution of Meg, which is meant to be her Moral Event Horizon, is somewhat understandable, considering that she frees Meg from an arranged marriage only to catch her releasing a prisoner that has already made at least two attempts on Isabella's life. Likewise, the fact that she is one of the few characters on the show to avoid carrying the Idiot Ball earned her extra points, and when she's insane she manages to be more competent than any one around her.
  • Unnecessary Makeover: Most viewers prefered Djaq's androgynous S1 appearance than her more feminized look in S2 (especially since it included what became known as the outer-bra).
  • Viewers in Mourning: The backlash for Marian and Allan's deaths were not pretty, and the writer/co-creator responsible for the former's death left the show under rather murky circumstances once the episode had aired. There was less outcry for Robin and Guy considering their fates were sealed by the season two finale and were seen coming a mile away.

YMMV for appearances in other works.