- Do Not Do This Cool Thing: Historically, many Moral Guardians saw the novel this way. Although all of the sex-addicted, sociopathic characters come to a bad end, the graphic sex scenes and Purple Prose detailing the luxurious lifestyles of the characters make some frown.
- Fair for Its Day: While the culture was amazingly sexist, and the author displays some sexist views, he is quick to point out that men who drink and frequent brothels all night have only themselves to blame when their wives cheat as well. Also, both the men and the women who deserve it come to miserable ends, with no differences in the harshness of their comeuppance or the narrator's condemnation.
- Squick: The pregnancy potion, which contains a ground-up placenta. Not only that, but the text goes into detail about the taste.
- What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: Apparently, it's not unheard of for family restaurants to hold banquets themed on this novel...
YMMV / Jin Ping Mei