YMMV / School of Rock

Film

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: As noted under Idiot Plot below, the other teachers could easily have exposed Dewey's ruse. So it's possible that Ms Mullins is merely finally cracking from the pressure of her job and is just in complete denial about the whole thing.
  • Awesome Music: A prime example.
    • It is a movie about rock and roll after all, special mention goes out to the band's performance at the end.
    • A highlight of the soundtrack is Led Zeppelin's Immigrant Song. Not just because its an awesome song, but the sheer fact that it's in the movie is a CMOA for the cast and crew, as they were able to convince the band (who is famously stingy about licensing their music) to let them use the song.
    • Subverted with the "Heal Me, I'm Heartsick" ballad by No Vacancy. While the music is good, the singer is trying hard, and everyone looks like true rock stars... Spider's ridiculous body-winding dance moves and leather shrug/chest tattoo combination turn the performance into one big sight gag.
  • Draco in Leather Pants: People tend to ignore Patty's abuse of Ned and think of her as a Designated Villain. Although Dewey is mooching off Ned at the beginning, Ned only gives him an ultimatum because Patty wants it. Ned doesn't appear to have a problem with Dewey there and he only orders him to move out after he's crossed the Moral Event Horizon by impersonating him. Really, Ned is the Only Sane Man.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
    • Freddie is one of the most popular kids, mainly due to being Troubled, but Cute and getting a lot of the best lines.
    • Katie the bass player in a weird way. She's noticed precisely because she's The Generic Guy who doesn't get many lines, and doesn't get a solo in the end credits.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple: While nothing actually happens in the movie, a lot of people like to imagine that Dewey and Ms Mullins dated after the Battle of the Bands. This is mainly brought on by the bar scene, where Dewey is able to get her to let her hair down a little. In the stage musical Ms. Mullins is Promoted to Love Interest for Dewey, with the bar scene serving as the main catalyst for their relationship.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Dewey calls Cats his least favorite musical. Its creator Andrew Lloyd Webber did the film's stage adaptation, and even kept that line in.
  • Idiot Plot: Any other adult could have potentially exposed Dewey's masquerade. Anyone with working ears could have, too. Despite the efforts to "soundproof" the room, they're playing rock music on amplified instruments for hours every day, yet no one seems to notice except one minor point wherein Mullins sits in on the class.
  • Most Writers Are Male : A MUCH more age-appropriate and accurate term than "groupies" would have been "merch girls." These are the almost Always Female hangers-on, sometimes the girlfriends of an indie band but also friends and family members, who sell t-shirts and C Ds, take admission and concession money, and do the grunt work like hanging up posters for a band.
  • Ron the Death Eater: A few people forget that Dewey is meant to be an Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist and that getting exposed is meant to be a Break the Haughty moment for him. The movie frequently calls Dewey out for his behavior and we're not supposed to support him until he undergoes Character Development in the third act.
  • Strawman Has a Point:
    • Ned's girlfriend Patty, when you really think about it. Dewey has been bumming at their place for months if not years, while continually refusing to get a steady job and therefore doing little to contribute to the rent. Ned keeps doing whatever he can to accommodate him because they were in a band years ago, while Patty is just supposed to tolerate this. It doesn't change the fact that she seems to take joy in Dewey's suffering, but anyone would be frustrated by that point. Also, although she's annoying and a nag, she points out that Dewey committed fraud by stealing Ned's identity and then exploiting a classroom full of little kids by lying to and manipulating them.
    • The fact of the matter is that most aspiring rock stars, no matter how committed they are to their dreams of music stardom, will not succeed and will have to find some other means of paying the bills. It's not because their drive wasn't strong enough, simply that at some point, Reality Ensues and you have to find a way to provide the basic necessities for yourself. Of course, the movie sets up something of a False Dichotomy — a lot of people simply parlay their rock star dreams into another career involving music, such as teaching or writing about it. And of course, at the end of the movie, Dewey and Ned do just that by setting up an after-school rock music teaching program. But the way Dewey acted as if it had to be either one or the other doesn't reflect reality.
    • It's hard to blame Dewey's band for kicking him out — just watch Dewey in action during the opening scene. Being a Large Ham is OK, but he should have known when to tone it down a little. The fact that No Vacancy win the Battle of the Bands without him makes their point just that much stronger.
  • Technology Marches On: Dewey's ruse would be harder to pull off once the rise of social media took over. A glance at Ned's Facebook would probably alert them.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: It's never confirmed whether or not Patty lives with them, but it's not unreasonable for her to be annoyed with how much Dewey takes advantage of Ned. On the other hand, Ned doesn't seem to mind and she walks all over him just as much.
  • Values Dissonance: The entire character of Billy "Fancy Pants." At the time, the only one who had any real umbrige with it was the screenwriter, who is openly bi and has a gay father, but general audiences wouldn't had minded. Over a decade later, it comes off as Dewey picking on him. The musical doesn't necessarily fix this, but at the very least depicts Billy as a character and not a punchline (helps that it's on Broadway, as LGBTQ-friendly a venue as you can imagine).
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: While not outright vulgar, there's a fair share of light swearing (mostly from the kids, no less!) and more than a few references to sex and drugs. It carries a light PG-13 rating, but feels more like the kind of PG-rated kids' films from the 80s that could get away with racier content.
  • The Woobie
    • Poor Ms. Mullins. When all the teachers are yelling at her for the Dewey debacle, she leaves the room and goes to the stairs...to put herself in the corner. Aww!
    • Ned. The poor guy is just trying to make a living as a teacher when his roommate steals his identity as part of a get-rich-quick scheme. Meanwhile, he lets his girlfriend walk all over him because he's afraid he'll never get another chance with a woman.

Stage Play

  • Award Snub: The show didn't win any of the Tonys it was nominated for, though considering it was competing against Hamilton this didn't surprise people.
  • Ear Worm: "You're in the Band" and "Stick it to the Man".
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: When playing at the Tony's, and facing some serious competition from Hamilton, Stage!Dewey reiterates that the band's not here to win but to rock, much as Film!Dewey did.
  • Hollywood Pudgy: Stage!Dewey is not as overweight as Jack Black but is treated as such; he actually gained weight for the role but given the choreography it's easy to see how he wouldn't be able to maintain that physique.
  • Tear Jerker:
    • The additional backstory the kids get leads to a real tear-worthy musical number in act one, as we see them all trying to be heard by their too-busy, overbearing, or unaware parents in "If Only You Would Listen". This song gets an even more tear-jerking reprise in the second act, as the kids, trying to get Dewey to come with them to the Battle of the Bands, tell him that he was the first one to really hear them.
    • Rosalie Mullins gets her own tear-jerking moment in the musical too. Instead of just getting tipsy and jamming to Edge of Seventeen in her quasi-date with Dewey at the dive bar, she gets a heartbreaking number about how she's lost the music and joy in her life, and how Dewey has reminded her a little bit of what it used to be.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/SchoolOfRock