History Main / TheWrongfulHeirToTheThrone

13th Jan '18 7:46:50 PM nombretomado
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* This is exactly what happened to King Edward VIII of England. He was always meant to be the king, as the oldest son, and his brother Albert was very much in favour of that particular line of succession.[[note]]On the other hand, their ''father'' George V was ''not'' in favour of it, and explicitly wrote that he hoped that his elder son would ''never marry or have children'' to ensure both Albert and Albert's [[UsefulNotes/HMTheQueen elder daughter Elizabeth]] would have a clear line to the throne.[[/note]] As things turned out, though, Edward VIII was absolutely, positively determined to marry outside of the acceptable social circle, and to a widely-rumored-to-be Nazi sympathizer during the prelude to World War II, no less. Edward's determination to flout the accepted rules and standards of the throne meant that he could not be king, not in the eyes of the Parliament, and not in the eyes of the people. Faced with this pressure, he abdicated his throne to his brother Albert, who reigned as George VI, which caused [[TheKingsSpeech a whole host of problems for Britain's new leader.]]

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* This is exactly what happened to King Edward VIII of England. He was always meant to be the king, as the oldest son, and his brother Albert was very much in favour of that particular line of succession.[[note]]On the other hand, their ''father'' George V was ''not'' in favour of it, and explicitly wrote that he hoped that his elder son would ''never marry or have children'' to ensure both Albert and Albert's [[UsefulNotes/HMTheQueen elder daughter Elizabeth]] would have a clear line to the throne.[[/note]] As things turned out, though, Edward VIII was absolutely, positively determined to marry outside of the acceptable social circle, and to a widely-rumored-to-be Nazi sympathizer during the prelude to World War II, no less. Edward's determination to flout the accepted rules and standards of the throne meant that he could not be king, not in the eyes of the Parliament, and not in the eyes of the people. Faced with this pressure, he abdicated his throne to his brother Albert, who reigned as George VI, which caused [[TheKingsSpeech [[Film/TheKingsSpeech a whole host of problems for Britain's new leader.]]
26th Nov '17 3:39:27 PM StFan
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* The movie ''Film/{{Dave}}'', where the lookalike is better at the job than the real deal.

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The movie ''Film/{{Dave}}'', where the lookalike is better at the job than the real deal.



* In ''Film/{{Dragonheart}}'', Prince Einon is a spoiled brat of a prince that thinks making war is fun. The first time he tries to participate in such an endeavor, during a peasant uprising, he almost dies; the result of this is that he's gifted with half the heart of a dragon. During the same peasant uprising, his father (a similarly nasty piece of work, especially to judge by the novelization of the film) is killed, making Einon a spoiled juvenile brat of a king with half a dragon's heart. He's functionally immortal so long as the dragon with whom he shares a heart remains alive, he's got the political power of the kingship allowing him to do pretty much anything he wants, and he grows up to become a full-blown sadist who happily cracks down even harder on the peasantry and personally abuses almost everyone around him. The alternative ruler would have been his mother, the kind-hearted and sympathetic queen, but she just ''had'' to [[NiceJobBreakingItHero save her child]]. [[spoiler:She quickly realizes what a mistake this was, and spends a large part of the next several years trying to [[SpannerInTheWorks undermine his worst plans]], up to and including hiring dragon slayers to hunt down his benefactor.]]

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* In ''Film/{{Dragonheart}}'', Prince Einon is a spoiled brat of a prince that thinks making war is fun. The first time he tries to participate in such an endeavor, during a peasant uprising, he almost dies; the result of this is that he's gifted with half the heart of a dragon. During the same peasant uprising, his father (a similarly nasty piece of work, especially to judge by the novelization of the film) is killed, making Einon a spoiled juvenile brat of a king with half a dragon's heart. He's functionally immortal so long as the dragon with whom he shares a heart remains alive, he's got the political power of the kingship allowing him to do pretty much anything he wants, and he grows up to become a full-blown sadist who happily cracks down even harder on the peasantry and personally abuses almost everyone around him. The alternative ruler would have been his mother, the kind-hearted kindhearted and sympathetic queen, but she just ''had'' to [[NiceJobBreakingItHero save her child]]. [[spoiler:She quickly realizes what a mistake this was, and spends a large part of the next several years trying to [[SpannerInTheWorks undermine his worst plans]], up to and including hiring dragon slayers to hunt down his benefactor.]]
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** In ''Discworld/WyrdSisters'', Tomjon, the true heir to the throne of Lancre, has no interest in becoming king and wants to become an actor instead. The witches put Verence up as an alternative, claiming that he is Tomjon's half-brother, which is true. They see no need to point out that their shared father wasn't the previous king but his Fool - the Queen got lonely while the king was fooling around with the peasant girls.
** ''Discworld/GuardsGuards'' introduces Carrot, who's the rightful heir to the throne, but believes that the Patrician would do a better job and is perfectly happy to work as Captain of the watch.
*** In later books, Carrot demonstrates he's not entirely Wrongful when he uses the implication of his Rightfulness to push the Patrician in certain directions.

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** In ''Discworld/WyrdSisters'', Tomjon, the true heir to the throne of Lancre, has no interest in becoming king and wants to become an actor instead. The witches put Verence up as an alternative, claiming that he is Tomjon's half-brother, which is true. They see no need to point out that their shared father wasn't the previous king but his Fool - -- the Queen got lonely while the king was fooling around with the peasant girls.
** ''Discworld/GuardsGuards'' introduces Carrot, who's the rightful heir to the throne, but believes that the Patrician would do a better job and is perfectly happy to work as Captain of the watch.
***
watch. In later books, Carrot demonstrates he's not entirely Wrongful when he uses the implication of his Rightfulness to push the Patrician in certain directions.



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* A RealLife example from English history would be [[TheHouseOfNormandy King Stephen]], who usurped the throne from his cousin Matilda, the rightful heir, because as a woman she was regarded as incompetent to rule by the standards of the time (the 1100s). ValuesDissonance, anyone?

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* A RealLife example from English history would be [[TheHouseOfNormandy [[UsefulNotes/TheHouseOfNormandy King Stephen]], who usurped the throne from his cousin Matilda, the rightful heir, because as a woman she was regarded as incompetent to rule by the standards of the time (the 1100s). ValuesDissonance, anyone?



* In 1830, King Charles X of France was overthrown by riots throughout Paris. He declared his 10-year-old grandson Henry to now be King Henry V, with his distant cousin Louis Philippe, the Duke of Orléans, as Regent. However, Henry was still too closely linked to Charles for many revolutionaries to handle, so as a compromise, when the Duke of Orléans went over to the French National Assembly in Paris in his role as Regent they proclaimed him to be King instead. The Orléans claim was problematic for the Bourbons since his father, Philippe Egalite, voted for the death of the King UsefulNotes/LouisXVI, his own cousin (and would himself later be executed during the ReignOfTerror).
* [[InvertedTrope Inverted]] by the Dutch King William III (r. 1849-1890), who was essentially the rightful heir to the wrong ''throne''. After the 1848 revolutions that occurred across Europe, his father [[KingBobTheNth King William II]], who was fearing for the survival of the dynasty, had reluctantly agreed to a sweeping political reform that massively curtailed the powers of the monarch in favor of the elected body of representatives in Parliament. William III was strongly opposed to this, since he wanted to rule as an absolute monarch like his grandfather [[KingBobTheNth King William I]]. It took many years to convince him to even accept his role, kicking and screaming all the way, but he proved a notoriously prickly person who flouted protocol all the time, earning him the nickname "King Gorilla".

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* In 1830, King Charles X of France was overthrown by riots throughout Paris. He declared his 10-year-old grandson Henry to now be King Henry V, with his distant cousin Louis Philippe, the Duke of Orléans, as Regent. However, Henry was still too closely linked to Charles for many revolutionaries to handle, so as a compromise, when the Duke of Orléans went over to the French National Assembly in Paris in his role as Regent they proclaimed him to be King instead. The Orléans claim was problematic for the Bourbons since his father, Philippe Egalite, Égalité, voted for the death of the King UsefulNotes/LouisXVI, his own cousin (and would himself later be executed during the ReignOfTerror).
* [[InvertedTrope Inverted]] {{Inverted|Trope}} by the Dutch King William III (r. 1849-1890), who was essentially the rightful heir to the wrong ''throne''. After the 1848 revolutions that occurred across Europe, his father [[KingBobTheNth King William II]], who was fearing for the survival of the dynasty, had reluctantly agreed to a sweeping political reform that massively curtailed the powers of the monarch in favor of the elected body of representatives in Parliament. William III was strongly opposed to this, since he wanted to rule as an absolute monarch like his grandfather [[KingBobTheNth King William I]].I. It took many years to convince him to even accept his role, kicking and screaming all the way, but he proved a notoriously prickly person who flouted protocol all the time, earning him the nickname "King Gorilla".



10th Nov '17 6:10:16 PM MrThorfan64
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** Renly tries to invoke this trope to justify taking the throne for himself. He has no legal claim, but he thinks he would be a better king than either of his nephews or his dour older brother.

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** Renly tries to invoke this trope to justify taking the throne for himself. He has no legal claim, but he thinks he would be a better king than either of his nephews or his dour older brother. Subverted in that in private Renly shows herself to be vain and unpleasant, making mean-spirited remarks about his brother Stannis and niece Shireen. It is also quite probable he knew his eldest brother Robert's children were not Robert's but sat on the information to increase his power.



*** Stannis then responds by travelling to the Wall and saving the Night's Watch, in marked contrast to the Lannisters, who try and influence the Night's Watch election, Tywin even mentioning the Wildlings getting past the Wall might help their cause.



** Daeron's father Aegon was also an example of this. He's historically known as "The Unworthy" due to his penchant for hedonism, petty cruelty, and just incompetent in general. Unfortunately, his brother Aemon the Dragonknight had become a knight of the Kingsguard, taking him out of the line of succession.

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** Daeron's father Aegon was also an example of this. He's historically known as "The Unworthy" due to his penchant for hedonism, petty cruelty, and just incompetent in general. Unfortunately, his younger brother Aemon the Dragonknight had become a knight of the Kingsguard, taking him out of the line of succession.succession. Ironically Aegon's father Viserys II was a very competent ruler who had served as Hand for his brother and nephews... but it is suspected his son poisoned him a year after Viserys succeeded to the throne.



** [[ReasonableAuthorityFigure Renly]] invokes this trope when trying to convince [[spoiler: [[HonorBeforeReason Ned Stark]] to support his coup for the throne]], pointing out that he's the most qualified heir for the job.

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** [[ReasonableAuthorityFigure Renly]] invokes this trope when trying to convince [[spoiler: [[HonorBeforeReason Ned Stark]] to support his coup for the throne]], pointing out that he's the most qualified heir for the job. However this can come across as InformedAttribute, as Renly never shows any ruling skills, and he comes across as UnintentionallyUnsympathetic to a lot of viewers, considering he seems quite willing to have his brother Stannis killed for this.
20th Oct '17 6:08:42 PM HiddenWindshield
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[[folder:Web Original]]
* In ''[[Literature/PayMeBug A Rake by Starlight]]'', the new Baron Tylaris is lazy and borderline incompetent (although he is [[ObfuscatingStupidity smarter than he appears]], that's not saying much), not to mention that he [[spoiler:murdered his father]]. In an interesting twist, the rebels' plan is to [[spoiler:[[ClonesArePeopleToo create someone]]]] who has a better claim to the throne.
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13th Oct '17 8:53:33 AM JoeMerl
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* In ''Manga/MagiLabyrinthOfMagic,'' the King of Balbadd says on his deathbed that he wants Alibaba, his youngest, [[HeroicBastard illegitimate]] child, to take the throne instead of his eldest, [[TheCaligula Ahbmad]]; while Alibaba [[HumbleHero probably would have been reluctant anyway]], the ensuing events cause him to flee the kingdom for several years. Ultimately, [[spoiler:he overthrows Ahbmad but turns Balbadd into a republic]].
** There's also a middle son, [[AuthorityInNameOnly Sahbmad]], but he's a NervousWreck with agoraphobia; he does [[TheMole help]] with the resistance against Ahbmad, but at one point Ahbmad actually threatens him by pointing out what Sahbmad would actually have to ''do'' if he tried to steal the throne away, which leaves Sahbmad completely terrified.
1st Oct '17 6:16:45 AM rosvicl
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** In ''Discworld/WyrdSisters'', Tomjon, the true heir to the throne of Lancre, has no interest in becoming king and wants to become an actor instead. The witches put Verence up as an alternative, claiming that he is Tomjon's half-brother, which is true. They see no need to point out that it's not because they share a father, but a ''mother'' - the Queen got lonely while the king was fooling around with the peasant girls.

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** In ''Discworld/WyrdSisters'', Tomjon, the true heir to the throne of Lancre, has no interest in becoming king and wants to become an actor instead. The witches put Verence up as an alternative, claiming that he is Tomjon's half-brother, which is true. They see no need to point out that it's not because they share a father, their shared father wasn't the previous king but a ''mother'' - his Fool - the Queen got lonely while the king was fooling around with the peasant girls.
6th Sep '17 7:44:07 PM Javertshark13
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Added DiffLines:

* In earlier drafts of ''Disney/{{Frozen}}'' where Elsa was a TragicVillain, her subjects would have considered her this as part of her FreudianExcuse. The full version of the CutSong "We Know Better" has them spreading malicious rumors about her powers, and darkly hinting that they won't allow her to become queen.
17th Jun '17 1:58:02 AM Slothgirl
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* In ''[[http://www.ksarchive.com/viewstory.php?sid=3103&warning=1 Hesitation]]'', Sybok is an arrogant, xenophobic {{Jerkass}} who's filled his household with yes-men and left them to do his job for him (and use all his funds) whilst he spends his time placating his equally-vile consort, but as the eldest son he's King of Vulcan and heir apparent to the Imperial throne. [[spoiler:He's also a subversion - whilst he was always kind of awful, much of his unsuitability actually comes from Ty'Lena's machinations.]]
23rd Mar '17 11:06:10 AM Morgenthaler
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Added DiffLines:

* [[InvertedTrope Inverted]] by the Dutch King William III (r. 1849-1890), who was essentially the rightful heir to the wrong ''throne''. After the 1848 revolutions that occurred across Europe, his father [[KingBobTheNth King William II]], who was fearing for the survival of the dynasty, had reluctantly agreed to a sweeping political reform that massively curtailed the powers of the monarch in favor of the elected body of representatives in Parliament. William III was strongly opposed to this, since he wanted to rule as an absolute monarch like his grandfather [[KingBobTheNth King William I]]. It took many years to convince him to even accept his role, kicking and screaming all the way, but he proved a notoriously prickly person who flouted protocol all the time, earning him the nickname "King Gorilla".
7th Mar '17 1:09:41 PM gb00393
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* ''Series/GameOfThrones'': [[ReasonableAuthorityFigure Renly]] invokes this trope when trying to convince [[spoiler: [[HonorBeforeReason Ned Stark]] to support his coup for the throne]], pointing out that he's the most qualified heir for the job.
** Viserys Targaryen also proves to be that: After his father was killed for being TheCaligula, he became obsessed with getting his crown back at any cost.

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* ''Series/GameOfThrones'': ''Series/GameOfThrones'':
**
[[ReasonableAuthorityFigure Renly]] invokes this trope when trying to convince [[spoiler: [[HonorBeforeReason Ned Stark]] to support his coup for the throne]], pointing out that he's the most qualified heir for the job.
** Viserys Targaryen also proves to be that: After his father was killed for being TheCaligula, he became obsessed with getting his crown back from the traitor and usurper Robert Baratheon at any cost.cost, proving not much better than his father, so most people were happy to accept Robert as king.


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** This trope is the entire motivation for Ned's actions regarding an attempted coup, as shortly prior to King Robert's arranged death, he discovers the king's three children were born of the queen's brother, and slightly modified Robert's last will and testament from "to my son Joffrey" to "the legitimate heir". Being that King Robert had no legitimate children at the time of his death, in Ned's eyes and the eyes of the law, the throne should pass to Robert's younger brother Stannis instead.
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.TheWrongfulHeirToTheThrone