Paul, I don't even pay an "early bird" fee to get a reserved seat on airlines. It does not matter to me, we all get there the same time anyway. To pay a surcharge for early bird sitting in a ship's theater? No way; had my share of B'way plays and MSG and even Phila Wachovia/Spectrum concerts--been there, done that and do not book a cruise based on the entertainment factor (BMG or otherwise). I'm on vacation and that means no rushing/pushing to stand in line for anything.
However, I am willing to pay to eat in specialty restaurants on ships because we enjoy fine dining. There is a difference, however, in that when we have our reservation, we usually have an assigned table (and it is the same for the entire week and it is empty and clean by the time we arrive) each night and we time it so that there is no one waiting to gain access to the restaurant except the Maitre'D at the front desk.
However, whatever floats your boat. Everyone has their likes/dislikes and we should all respect that.