Anvilicious: Scott Stapp isn't exactly known to be a master of subtlety, but even compensating for that, "In America" is still incredibly blunt.
Broken Base: Scott Stapp's vocals. They either make or break the band's music with their quite liberal use of Yarling and is often the one thing that either makes a devoted fan or a caustic critic.
Condemned by History: The backlash began right around the time they broke up and hasn't slowed down since; Today it is almost a social taboo to say that you are a Creed fan and just about everyone is ashamed of the Creed album they owned circa 2000. In 2013, readers of Rolling Stone magazine voted them as the worst band of the 1990s by such a wide margin the editors claimed the competition "wasn't even close", with much maligned Nickelback coming in a distant second. When Creed got back together and released Full Circle in 2009, it was slammed by critics and was a commercial failure, barely going gold. The subsequent concert tour didn't fare much better, with tickets for a Birmingham concert dropping to as low as 75 cents.
Ensemble Dark Horse: Mark Tremonti, who is considered a skilled guitarist (though mostly for his work in Alter Bridge and Tremonti).
Face of the Band: Scott Stapp. Without him, the rest of the band are better known as Alter Bridge plus Myles Kennedy.
When the film was first announced, many fans were less-than-enthusiastic, saying that Rocky Balboa had been a perfect send-off for the series and that this film would likely be a poor follow-up. As it turned out, it garnered even more critical acclaim than Rocky Balboa, and made back its budget in its first weekend alone. It also brought an Oscar nomination for Stallone, his first since the original Rocky.
Brad Jones summed it up perfectly. He was extremely skeptical of the movie when it was first announced because he thought Rocky Balboa was the perfect finale. He then found Creed so good that he was genuinely moved to tears. He also ended up adoring Creed II, naming both among his favorite films of the years they were released.
Author's Saving Throw: The movie managed to do this for Rocky as a trainer. In Rocky V it was evident that he had no idea how to train Tommy Gunn and was just reliving his career through him while in Creed he managed to learn from his past mistakes and became a better trainer for Adonis.
Award Snub: Despite earning massive praise for its direction, cinematography, editing, acting and music, the film only has one Academy Award nomination: Sylvester Stallone for Best Supporting Actor. Ryan Coogler and Michael B. Jordan missing out are especially galling and helped provoke the "Oscars So White" controversy. Additionally, after being viewed as the frontrunner, many were upset to see Stallone lose the Oscar, though Mark Rylance's victory for Bridge of Spies is viewed as strong and unique in its own right.
Awesome Music: Has its own original soundtrack, including the remix of the Rocky tune that plays during Donny and Rick's last round, as well as "Last Breath" by Future, which uses another remix to the famous tune as it's beat. As for the original score, Adonis' theme has garnered much praise for its epic, moving sound.
Fanfic Fuel: Adonis being defeated by Danny "Stuntman" Wheeler at the Delphi Gym opens up a lot of potential rivalry story-lines that could be used for sequels now that Adonis has been outed as Apollo Creed's son. As a possible nod to this, Wheeler is the opponent Adonis faces and beats at the start of the second film.
Genius Bonus: The gym owned by Tony "Little Duke" Evers (bequeathed him by his father, the elder "Duke") is called the "Delphi Boxing Academy". Its most famous alumni is Apollo Creed, and pictures, images and tributes to him are all over the gym. In Greek mythology, Delphi was the most famous site of prophecy in the world, and a place sacred to... Apollo, Greek god of light, music and prophecy.
Adonis is given the somewhat derisive nickname of "Hollywood" by the guys at the gym. He spars (and loses) to Danny Wheeler, who bears the Nom de Guerre "Stuntman". This could be a clever allusion to how in the movie industry ("Hollywood"), the star gets all the money and prestige for the daring stunts performed in the film, while in reality it is the stuntman who actually executes the maneuvers, as the actor either lacks the skills, toughness, or fortitude to do them himself. So naturally, the "stuntman" trounces the flamboyant (but ultimately toothless) "Hollywood" idol.
Harsher in Hindsight: At one point in the film Mary Anne Creed, played by Phylicia Rashad, watches a news report about how the revelation of Apollo Creed's infidelity could hurt his legacy. Mirroring those events, Rashad's twice on-screen husband Bill Cosby faced numerous allegations—and later a conviction—of drugging and raping women, hurting his own legacy.
Hilarious in Hindsight: On an episode of Everybody Hates Chris, Chris Rock joked about his father's favorite movie being Rocky because Apollo defeated Rocky in the end, and even thought the movie should've been named Apollo. One can only imagine how happy he'd be to see a movie about Apollo's son, especially after Rocky IV.
While the movie was still in production, Crackedran an article declaring that it was going to be terrible. It argued that Creed was an unnecessary addition to the franchise, with specific pot shots taken at Michael B. Jordan's inability to make good career choices (comparing Creed to the above-mentioned Fantastic Four) and Stallone's involvement in the movie despite his age. We all know those predictions turned out...
It's the Same, Now It Sucks!: While the film averted this trope pretty nicely for the most part, one minor complaint that some viewers had was that the ending was near-identical to that of Rocky Balboa, with the title character going the distance and losing on a judges' decision, but being widely acclaimed as the moral victor of the night. In fairness to the filmmakers though, there were only really two other endings they could have gone with, namely Adonis losing by KO (which would have been far too much of a Downer Ending), or him actually managing to win (which, regardless of whether it was by decision or by KO, would have come across as unrealistic).
Most Wonderful Sound: The soundtrack throughout most of the movie was awesome modern pieces. Then, toward the end of the final fight at the end of the film, the old Rocky Theme started playing.
They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: Despite much being made about Donnie being a Heroic Bastard, we never learn how Apollo's legitimate children feel about their half-brother; in fact, outside of a throwaway line by a newscaster describing Donnie as Creed's youngest son, Apollo and Mary-Anne's children are never even mentioned, and we never hear how Mary-Anne felt about discovering her husband was unfaithful right before he died.