History Main / ThickerThanWater

16th Jul '17 6:38:02 AM dingodan
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Ironically, the original quote for this trope is persistently misquoted. The old proverb "Blood is thicker than water" - which is meant to imply that family relations are more important than social ones - is actually a misquote of an older saying "the blood of the covenant in thicker than the water of the womb"; meaning that bonds of personal choice are stronger than something as "accidental" as birth, which is quite the opposite of how it is commonly quoted.

14th Jul '17 3:35:06 PM Menarker
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Ironically, this trope is the result of persistent misquoting. The old proverb "Blood is thicker than water" - which is meant to imply that family relations are more important than social ones - is actually a misquote of an older saying "the blood of the covenant in thicker than the water of the womb"; meaning that bonds of personal choice are stronger than something as "accidental" as birth, which is quite the opposite of how it is commonly quoted.


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Ironically, the original quote for this trope is the result of persistent misquoting.persistently misquoted. The old proverb "Blood is thicker than water" - which is meant to imply that family relations are more important than social ones - is actually a misquote of an older saying "the blood of the covenant in thicker than the water of the womb"; meaning that bonds of personal choice are stronger than something as "accidental" as birth, which is quite the opposite of how it is commonly quoted.

14th Jul '17 3:32:36 PM Menarker
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Added DiffLines:

Ironically, this trope is the result of persistent misquoting. The old proverb "Blood is thicker than water" - which is meant to imply that family relations are more important than social ones - is actually a misquote of an older saying "the blood of the covenant in thicker than the water of the womb"; meaning that bonds of personal choice are stronger than something as "accidental" as birth, which is quite the opposite of how it is commonly quoted.

7th Jul '17 9:21:49 PM LadyNorbert
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Blood relations have a claim on each other. In fiction, as in RealLife, characters will put up with a lot from relatives that they would never endure from unrelated people. Even when the blood relation comes out of the blue (LukeIAmYourFather, LongLostRelative, LukeYouAreMyFather), even when the characters were SeparatedAtBirth. And they will leap to each other's defense. Indeed, the BigScrewedUpFamily [[HypocriticalHeartwarming may object to any of its members being mistreated in a far more mild manner than they routinely subject this relative to]].

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Blood relations have a claim on each other. In fiction, as in RealLife, characters will put up with a lot from relatives that they would never endure from unrelated people. Even when the blood relation comes out of the blue (LukeIAmYourFather, LongLostRelative, LukeYouAreMyFather), even when the characters were SeparatedAtBirth. And they will leap to each other's defense. Indeed, the BigScrewedUpFamily [[HypocriticalHeartwarming may object to any of its members being mistreated in a far more mild milder manner than they routinely subject this relative to]].



* In ''Disney/TheLionKingIISimbasPride'' Zira exhibits heavy ParentalFavoritism over her youngest (and possibly adopted) son, Kovu, due to him being chosen by Scar to be his successor. While Kovu grows to be a strong, healthy lion his older brother Nuka is scrawny and mangy in comparison. Nuka is shown to be a mild bully towards his siblings Kovu and Vitani in the [[AMinorKidroduction first part of the film]], and Vitani has spats with Nuka. Nuka [[IJustWantToBeLoved deeply craves]] his mothers affectionate and approval but she focuses on Kovu. Despite this, Zira and Vitani are both horrified and sympathetic [[spoiler:after Nuka dies trying to get to Simba.]] Zira disowns Kovu after the event due to believing [[spoiler:he ultimately lead to his brothers death.]]

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* In ''Disney/TheLionKingIISimbasPride'' Zira exhibits heavy ParentalFavoritism over her youngest (and possibly adopted) son, Kovu, due to him being chosen by Scar to be his successor. While Kovu grows to be a strong, healthy lion his older brother Nuka is scrawny and mangy in comparison. Nuka is shown to be a mild bully towards his siblings Kovu and Vitani in the [[AMinorKidroduction first part of the film]], and Vitani has spats with Nuka. Nuka [[IJustWantToBeLoved deeply craves]] his mothers affectionate mother's affection and approval approval, but she focuses on Kovu. Despite this, Zira and Vitani are both horrified and sympathetic [[spoiler:after Nuka dies trying to get to Simba.]] Zira disowns Kovu after the event due to believing [[spoiler:he ultimately lead led to his brothers death.]]



* Referenced and subverted in ''Film/ThePlayersClub''. When Diana finds her cousin, Ebony, in bed with her boyfriend, she tries to attack Ebony, who hides in the bathroom. Diana then gives a heartfelt speech about how much she loved her cousin and how she thought blood was thicker than water but was apparently wrong. She then pretends to leave… and punches Ebony in the face when she finally comes out of the bathroom.

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* Referenced and subverted in ''Film/ThePlayersClub''. When Diana finds her cousin, Ebony, in bed with her boyfriend, she tries to attack Ebony, who hides in the bathroom. Diana then gives a heartfelt speech about how much she loved her cousin and how she thought blood was thicker than water but was apparently wrong. She then pretends to leave… leave... and punches Ebony in the face when she finally comes out of the bathroom.



** Lara Raith is shown to be ''very'' protective of her family, especially her youngest siblings Inari and Thomas. The one exception being Papa Raith after Harry Dresden tricks him into revealing his true feelings for his children while she was listening…

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** Lara Raith is shown to be ''very'' protective of her family, especially her youngest siblings Inari and Thomas. The one exception being is Papa Raith Raith, after Harry Dresden tricks him into revealing his true feelings for his children while she was listening…listening...



*** It's played with, though. Tyson and Percy were already friends, it's just that finding out that one of your best friends is your brother ''and'' a cyclops makes things a bit… awkward between them. It doesn't help that [[AllOfTheOtherReindeer Percy is teased relentlessly about it]]. Subverted when the BigBad of that very book is [[spoiler:Polyphemus, a fellow son of Poseidon, who Tyson and Percy open a can of whup-ass upon.]]

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*** It's played with, though. Tyson and Percy were already friends, it's just that finding out that one of your best friends is your brother ''and'' a cyclops makes things a bit… bit... awkward between them. It doesn't help that [[AllOfTheOtherReindeer Percy is teased relentlessly about it]]. Subverted when the BigBad of that very book is [[spoiler:Polyphemus, a fellow son of Poseidon, who Tyson and Percy open a can of whup-ass upon.]]



* ''Literature/AMurderIsAnnounced'' features twin sisters who have been SeparatedAtBirth, don't know they're sisters, and one of them actually dislikes the other. However, once they realize the relationship, they develop a sense of family solidarity and one of them (the one who disliked the other) goes so far as to lie to the police for her sister's sake. [[spoiler: Emma, one twin, dislikes the other because she sees her as competition for the favor -- and money -- of Miss Blacklock. The realization that Philippa is in fact her twin sister changes her from rival to ally in Emma's mind making her sudden protectiveness perfectly reasonable.]]

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* ''Literature/AMurderIsAnnounced'' features twin sisters who have been SeparatedAtBirth, don't know they're sisters, and one of them actually dislikes the other. However, once they realize the relationship, they develop a sense of family solidarity and one of them (the one who disliked the other) goes so far as to lie to the police for her sister's sake. [[spoiler: Emma, one twin, dislikes the other because she sees her as competition for the favor -- and money -- of Miss Blacklock. The realization that Philippa is in fact her twin sister changes her from rival to ally in Emma's mind mind, making her sudden protectiveness perfectly reasonable.]]



* Seen in ''Literature/HarryPotter'', and evident primarily with the [[BigScrewedUpFamily Blacks]], although occurs in several other families as well. Overlaps with FamilyHonor in many cases, but not always. The term "blood traitor" is often applied to wizards (primarily purebloods, but not necessarily) who "betray the family" by going against their ideals. It is considered a highly derogatory term, and is comparable to disownment. It's also worth noting that this "obedience to family" is a driving force for many of the Death Eaters (e.g. [[TheDutifulSon Regulus]], the [[FamilyHonor Malfoys]]), and seems to be a major factor in pureblood culture. "Blood traitor" is also used in a more general sense, to denote those who have gone against the perceived "societal principles of wizardkind" as well, presumably, as a derivative of the above.

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* Seen in ''Literature/HarryPotter'', and evident primarily with the [[BigScrewedUpFamily Blacks]], although occurs in several other families as well. Overlaps with FamilyHonor in many cases, but not always. The term "blood traitor" is often applied to wizards (primarily purebloods, but not necessarily) who "betray the family" by going against their ideals. It is considered a highly derogatory term, and is comparable to disownment.being disowned. It's also worth noting that this "obedience to family" is a driving force for many of the Death Eaters (e.g. [[TheDutifulSon Regulus]], the [[FamilyHonor Malfoys]]), and seems to be a major factor in pureblood culture. "Blood traitor" is also used in a more general sense, to denote those who have gone against the perceived "societal principles of wizardkind" as well, presumably, as a derivative of the above.



* In ''Literature/TheOtherBoleynGirl'' Mary's love for her sister always overcomes their rivalry. The only people Anne can trust is her siblings Anne and George.

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* In ''Literature/TheOtherBoleynGirl'' ''Literature/TheOtherBoleynGirl,'' Mary's love for her sister always overcomes their rivalry. The only people Anne can trust is are her siblings Anne Mary and George.



** The Tyrells mostly stick together despite their ambition. Olenna does deride Mace regularly and is dismissive of Loras' intelligence ("[Knocking men off horses with a stick] does not make him wise"), but she and Margaery are also among the most accepting of Loras' sexuality.

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** The Tyrells mostly stick together despite their ambition. Olenna does deride Mace regularly and is dismissive of Loras' Loras's intelligence ("[Knocking men off horses with a stick] does not make him wise"), but she and Margaery are also among the most accepting of Loras' Loras's sexuality.



* ''Series/TheWire'': Avon Barksdale will do anything for kin. Stringer Bell… Not so much.
-->'''Stringer Bell:''' "But there go a life that had to be snatched, Avon ''(…)'' Twenty years above his fucking head. [[HeelFaceTurn He'd flip, man!]] They got you, me, and Brianna! No fucking way, man! Hell, no! Now, I know you family, you loved that nigga, but you wanna talk that 'Blood is thicker than water' bullshit, you take that shit somewhere else, nigga! That motherfucker would've taken down the whole fucking show, starting with you, killer!"

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* ''Series/TheWire'': Avon Barksdale will do anything for kin. Stringer Bell… Bell... Not so much.
-->'''Stringer Bell:''' "But there go a life that had to be snatched, Avon ''(…)'' ''(...)'' Twenty years above his fucking head. [[HeelFaceTurn He'd flip, man!]] They got you, me, and Brianna! No fucking way, man! Hell, no! Now, I know you family, you loved that nigga, but you wanna talk that 'Blood is thicker than water' bullshit, you take that shit somewhere else, nigga! That motherfucker would've taken down the whole fucking show, starting with you, killer!"



* On ''Series/{{Dallas}}'', whenever a group of non-Ewings was ready to give JR what he had coming, Bobby would usually stand up to them and talk them down, despite the fact the JR messed with Bobby's personal and professional life more than everyone else combined.

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* On ''Series/{{Dallas}}'', whenever a group of non-Ewings was ready to give JR what he had coming, Bobby would usually stand up to them and talk them down, despite the fact the that JR messed with Bobby's personal and professional life more than everyone else combined.



* Really the entire premise of ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'', especially the [[KnightTemplarBigBrother main]] [[BerserkButton characters]]. However, as the seasons progress, their UndyingLoyalty is taken to the point of [[DysfunctionJunction unhealthy codependency.]] Toyed with in places, as one of the defining lines of the series is "Family don't end with blood, boy," showing that it's your ''family'', not your ''blood relations'' that are most important. Sam and Dean have their spats but love each other nevertheless, and Bobby shares no blood with them but loves them as if they were his own kids, [[spoiler: even referring to them as his kids to a memory of his abusive father]]. For example, the season two episode "Tall Tales" has the two sniping at each other all episode LikeAnOldMarriedCouple. But at the end of the episode, we get this:
-->'''Sam''': Look, Dean, um, I just wanna say that I'm, uh...um...

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* Really the entire premise of ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'', especially the [[KnightTemplarBigBrother main]] [[BerserkButton characters]]. However, as the seasons progress, their UndyingLoyalty is taken to the point of [[DysfunctionJunction unhealthy codependency.]] Toyed with in places, as one of the defining lines of the series is "Family don't end with blood, boy," showing that it's your ''family'', not your ''blood relations'' that are most important. Sam and Dean have their spats but love each other nevertheless, and Bobby shares no blood with them but loves them as if they were his own kids, [[spoiler: even referring to them as his kids sons to a memory of his abusive father]]. For example, the season two episode "Tall Tales" has the two sniping at each other all episode LikeAnOldMarriedCouple. But at the end of the episode, we get this:
-->'''Sam''': Look, Dean, um, I just wanna say that I'm, uh... um...



** Subverted by Ariadne, who betrays her father, King Minos, and helpes Theseus kill the Minotaur, who is her half-brother.

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** Subverted by Ariadne, who betrays her father, King Minos, and helpes helps Theseus kill the Minotaur, who is her half-brother.



* ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'' plays this trope straight sometimes. You can be a complete ass to Carver, drive him to join the Templars, and at the end he will still [[spoiler:[[CrowningMomentOfAwesome step between Merideth and Hawke and say "I will not kill my own brother/sister"]]]].
** It is however averted in the case of [[CainAndAbel Bartrand and Varric]], as well as with Merrill and her clan.

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* ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII'' plays this trope straight sometimes. You can be a complete ass to Carver, drive him to join the Templars, and at the end he will still [[spoiler:[[CrowningMomentOfAwesome step between Merideth Meredith and Hawke and say "I will not kill my own brother/sister"]]]].
** It is however is, however, averted in the case of [[CainAndAbel Bartrand and Varric]], as well as with Merrill and her clan.



** It's also possible to avert it by [[spoiler:joining the Templars and killing Bethany]].

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** It's also possible to avert it by [[spoiler:joining the Templars and killing Bethany]].Circle!Bethany]].



* Yukari from ''VisualNovel/LiarLiar'' is an AxCrazy murderer but [[EvenEvilHasLovedOnes loves her younger sister]] Minami. Part of the reason she killed her ex boyfriend was because she didn't want her sister dating boy who cheats (Yukari's boyfriend was still dating her when he began flirting with Minami). In the sequel, the Good End has Minami attempting to kill Yukari as revenge for her boyfriend. Yukari's girlfriend Miho [[spoiler:kills Minami to save Yukari]] however this pisses Yukari off so badly [[spoiler:that she kills her girlfriend Miho afterwards]].

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* Yukari from ''VisualNovel/LiarLiar'' is an AxCrazy murderer but [[EvenEvilHasLovedOnes loves her younger sister]] Minami. Part of the reason she killed her ex boyfriend was because she didn't want her sister dating boy who cheats (Yukari's boyfriend was still dating her when he began flirting with Minami). In the sequel, the Good End has Minami attempting to kill Yukari as revenge for her boyfriend. Yukari's girlfriend Miho [[spoiler:kills Minami to save Yukari]] however Yukari]]; however, this pisses Yukari off so badly [[spoiler:that she kills her girlfriend Miho afterwards]].



* In ''Webcomic/UrbanUnderbrush'', [[http://www.lepusstudios.com/uu0116.html an attempt to invoke this]] -- by pointing out he's been asked to side with a total stranger to make his own cousin uncomfortable -- actually results in his enthusiatic cooperation.

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* In ''Webcomic/UrbanUnderbrush'', [[http://www.lepusstudios.com/uu0116.html an attempt to invoke this]] -- by pointing out he's been asked to side with a total stranger to make his own cousin uncomfortable -- actually results in his enthusiatic enthusiastic cooperation.



-->'''[[TheMedic Zoidberg]]''': ''Really?'' ''[writing]'' Blood… thicker… water.
** And in the "Beast with a Billion Backs" we find out Fry's is as thick as pancake syrup

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-->'''[[TheMedic Zoidberg]]''': ''Really?'' ''[writing]'' Blood… thicker… Blood... thicker... water.
** And in the "Beast with a Billion Backs" we find out Fry's is as thick as pancake syrupsyrup.
29th May '17 8:26:38 PM Abodos
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* The phrase entered the popular lexicon in America when Commodore Josiah Tattnall uttered the phrase when he found his squadron accidentally engaged in the attack on Taku Forts when Anglo-French allies had attempted to breach a Chinese position. Tattnall made the split decision to aid the British (mostly by helping to evacuate the wounded and did not perform in a combat capacity) despite American neutrality. When superiors demanded to know what he had been thinking in violating America's strict neutrality, Tattnall simply uttered the phrase and thus it entered the common consciousness.

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* The phrase entered the popular lexicon in America during the Second Opium War when Commodore Josiah Tattnall uttered the phrase when he found his squadron accidentally engaged in the attack on Taku Forts when Anglo-French allies had attempted to breach a Chinese position. Tattnall made the split decision to aid the British (mostly by helping to evacuate the wounded and did not perform in a combat capacity) despite American neutrality. When superiors demanded to know what he had been thinking in violating America's strict neutrality, Tattnall simply uttered the phrase and thus it entered the common consciousness.
1st May '17 6:35:56 PM Linda58
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Added DiffLines:

* Averted in ''[[http://archiveofourown.org/series/712947 Laurel Lance Character Studies]]'', where Thea displays more loyalty to Laurel than to her brother Oliver. To the point that she outright states Laurel deserves better than him; and after (repeatedly) begging Laurel to "scream about what an ass my brother is" Laurel's confessions/rants make Thea angry enough to avoid Oliver ''for days''. Although a case could be made that she ''is'' choosing family, it just isn't her blood.
18th Apr '17 11:10:57 AM dingodan
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Somewhat TruthInTelevision. Ironically, the full proverb from which this trope's name is derived means [[TrueCompanions the exact opposite]] -- being that its full version reads "The blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb."

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Somewhat TruthInTelevision. Ironically, the full proverb from which this trope's name is derived means [[TrueCompanions the exact opposite]] -- being that its full version reads "The blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb."



* The original phrase implies the inverse however. The phrase being "the blood of the battlefield[[note]](though occasionally translated as "covenant")[[/note]] is thicker than the water of the womb". So the person who you fought with should be treated better then your own family, or, friends are the family you choose, and therefore take priority. It originally came from a German proverb in the year 1180.
31st Mar '17 7:12:21 PM Doug86
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** In the ''CalLeandros'' series, Cal and his older brother Niko would do anything to protect each other. Threatening either one of them in the presence of his brother is likely to be met with a swift, painful, and possibly lethal response.

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** In the ''CalLeandros'' ''Literature/CalLeandros'' series, Cal and his older brother Niko would do anything to protect each other. Threatening either one of them in the presence of his brother is likely to be met with a swift, painful, and possibly lethal response.
28th Mar '17 4:53:12 PM ngh93
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-->'''Drakken:''' Shego, I take it back! You re not a softy! '''''SHEGO!!!!!'''''

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-->'''Drakken:''' Shego, I take it back! You re You're not a softy! '''''SHEGO!!!!!'''''
24th Mar '17 5:09:42 PM ngh93
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-->'''Drakken:''' Shego, I take it back! You re not a softy! ''''''SHEGO!!!!!''''''

to:

-->'''Drakken:''' Shego, I take it back! You re not a softy! ''''''SHEGO!!!!!'''''''''''SHEGO!!!!!'''''
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