Adaptation Displacement: Unless you're a fan of TCM (Turner Classic Movies) you've most likely never even heard of the original non-musical movie (1927). Or the 1926 play (now known as Play Ball) the film was based on, whose story was actually Ripped from the Headlines.
Angst? What Angst?: The one innocent inmate in the "Cell Block Tango"; while the film averts this, the original Broadway recording features her sounding more frustrated and annoyed by her situation than anything and sounding rather deadpan and matter-of-fact when delivering the line, "Uh-uh, not guilty".
Award Snub: The original production was nominated for eleven Tony Awards and didn't win once. (To be fair, it was up against A Chorus Line.) This was rectified with the revival, which won six out of the eight Tonys it was nominated for.
Family-Unfriendly Aesop: The legal system is a farce and a circus, and fame will let you get away with anything. Additionally, if you are falsely accused of murder, you're more likely to get executed than someone who did. The saddest thing is that much too often this is true.
Hollywood Pudgy: Roxie snarks at Velma to "lay off the caramels". On the other hand, Roxie isn't exactly a nice person, and might just want to snub her back because Velma insulted her before. The film fits this trope even better than some of the stage versions, because in the movie, the line comes right after Catherine Zeta-Jones completes a rather intricate and impressive one-woman dance routine... while several months pregnant.
Magnificent Bastard: Billy Flynn is Velma Kelly's greedy, smooth-talking lawyer. After learning of Roxie Hart's incarceration and seeking to earn more money, Flynn decides to become her lawyer as well. Over the span of several weeks, Flynn teaches Roxie how to earn sympathy from the public whilst also manipulating multiple reporters into thinking she killed her victim in self-defense. During Roxie's trial, Flynn cajoles Roxie's husband, Amos, into forgiving Roxie and accuses a district attorney of tampering with evidence incriminating Roxie—evidence Flynn fabricated himself. Due to Flynn's conniving words, Roxie is declared not guilty, and Flynn walks away having won another case.
What Do You Mean, It's Not for Kids?: The musical is no less troublesome for those seeking family-friendly entertainment. After all, it takes place in Prohibition-era Chicago, home of gangsters, flappers, illegal booze, and murder. Several numbers take place in a murderer's prison, and there's cursing in some of the lyrics. This doesn't deter some middle schools from performing it.
At live shows, Amos's Woobiedom can be measured empirically by listening to the audience's "Awwww"s after "Mister Cellophane". "My exit music, please." (silence) He tends to get lots of applause after leaving the stage, though. Alternately, playing Amos (and Mr. Cellophane) for laughs is a valid choice, and could be pulled off well.
Amos taking the initiative to pay for his wife's lawyer. He's not conned into it; he does it without any promise that Roxie has changed.
Roxie is shown being perfectly civil to the Hunyak. Everyone is also saddened when the latter is executed.
Billy Flynn despite berating Amos for not bringing enough money takes the $2,000 and tells him, "Your devotion to your wife is very touching." While Flynn later does a song and dance around Amos to win Roxie's case, he seems sincere in that moment at least.
Amos's reaction when he realizes that Roxie lied to him about murdering a burglar, that said "burglar" was a man they both knew well, and the only explanation is that his wife was cheating on him. He starts angrily ranting about how much of a "sap" he was.
Uncanny Valley: Roxie, as well as the reporters, in "We Both Reached For the Gun" in the 2002 film version. Oddly enough, the reason it's so eerie is because it's actual people made up, dressed up, and choreographed like marionettes (or a ventriloquist dummy in Roxie's case), making them inhuman enough that it's just plain creepy.
Accidental Innuendo: Before they even became the Chicago Transit Authority, they went by the name "The Big Thing", which apparently caused some controversy in the Chicago club circuit (they were forced to perform in some clubs as "The Big Sound").
Awesome Music: Progressive Rock and jazz-rock fans will find the first three albums to be a veritable goldmine, as well as (probably) quite a lot of Chicago VII. Steven Wilson (of Porcupine Tree fame) recently remixed the second album, in case you needed more evidence of their prog cred.
Broken Base: Their stuff post-Kath era divides the fanbase, especially the 80's "power ballad" era.
Critical Dissonance: Their first album garnered positive reviews, but overall, they were never the darlings of the music press.
Early Installment Weirdness: Robert Lamm's Author Tracts on the first few albums. Hearing Peter Cetera of all people singing about the need to "tear the system down" can be a bit jarring for younger listeners.
"Funny Aneurysm" Moment: The inside gatefold photo of their eleventh album, which was released in November 1977, features the band, in an antique car, being chased by a group of policemen(some of whom are firing guns)in another car. One of the guns seems pointed at the head of Terry Kath, who is driving the bands car. In January 1978, Kath died of an accidental, self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.
Replacement Scrappy: Kath replacement Donnie Dacus lasted for only two albums (Hot Streets and Chicago XIII), and was later acknowledged as "a mistake".
Jason Scheff for Peter Cetera fans.
Tris Imboden, who replaced founding drummer Danny Seraphine in 1990. Doesn't help the fact that Seraphine's departure remains the most controversial in history of the band, with differing sources claimed either he quit or he got fired.note Why Seraphine may have been fired is a story of itself. One source said Seraphine became too enamored with electric drum machines and started performing poorly live. Others say Seraphine became too involved with the business side of the band. Seraphine noted in his autobiography he used to have a short temper, with an example being an incident where he got into a fist fight with his drum tech during a sound check and the tech quit his job on the spot, leading to another story where rumors had it that Seraphine attacked the band's manager backstage after a show due to a small misunderstanding on the manager's part. Later that night, Seraphine was traveling on a plane and the manager's brother asked why he attacked the manager. Seraphine supposedly lost it again and attacked the brother. The brother later died from a "heart attack", although some think Seraphine's attack had something to do with it.
Unfortunately, this goes for any lead vocalist whose name isn't Terry Kath, although Peter Cetera and Bill Champlin avert this.
Signature Song: Depending on whom you ask, "25 or 6 to 4", "Saturday in the Park", or "Hard to Say I'm Sorry".
Following the release of Elite Beat Agents, "You're the Inspiration" has joined the list.
"If You Leave Me Now" is another.
Tear Jerker: "Little One", from their eleventh album, features Terry Kath on lead vocals and was a minor hit shortly after his death in early 1978. Although it was written by drummer Danny Seraphine for his two girls, Terry clearly sang it with his own toddler daughter in mind. One might get the feeling that he somehow knew he wasn't going to be around to see her grow up.