So we have these Alternate Universe
USA tropes: the Divided States of America
where the US never unified or the union broke up at some point, the Fallen States of America
where the US has become a third world country and the Expanded States of America
where the US has gotten bigger. But what about when fiction presents the idea of the US either losing the Revolutionary War or it never happening? You have a modern day America under British rule.
Due to a lot of this fiction coming from US authors, this is almost always depicted as a bad, bad, thing. Which can make other audiences, particularly British, uncomfortable at times.
Anime & Manga
- Code Geass has an interesting case: the revolutionary war was lost, but then Britain lost to Napoleon Bonaparte, and therefore no longer has control over the British Isles, themselves making the seat of the Britannian Empire be physically in the US.
- In one issue of Grant Morrison's JLA, a probability-altering villain twisted time so America never revolted, and a King George was on the throne. Amongst other things, the Capitol Building changes to look kind of like a larger version of the Houses of Parliament.
- There's a very brief reference in JSA to a world where the heroes are the Colonial Society of Justice. For some reason, Starman and Stargirl (the only charactes we see) wear Revolutionary War era costumes.
- The Bartimaeus Trilogy is set sometime in an alternate 1930's or so, and the third book mentions offhand that the American Revolution is only just beginning. Some of the demons are threatened with "being sent to fight in the Colonies."
- In the Lord Darcy series, history diverged around 1199: the Anglo-French Empire is still ruled by a descendant of Richard The Lion Heart, and controls most of western Europe as well as America.
- In Megamorphs #3: Elfangor's Secret, the villain Visser Four travels back in time to alter various points of human history to make Earth of the present easier to conquer. One of these changes is warning the Hessians of Washington's approach, allowing them to ambush the Americans as they cross the Delaware and thus prevent the United States from being founded.
- A novel with the appropriate title of For Want of a Nail is a faux textbook of North American history from 1763 to 1971. The point of divergence is the Battle of Saratoga, which ends in a British victory. Shortly thereafter a peace faction gets control of Congress and ends the war wth Great Britain. Some revolutionaries escape to form a new nation in Texas, while Britain's North American colonies are given dominion status in the 1830s.
- The Tales of Alvin Maker splits the difference, with portions of colonial America splitting away as a reduced United States, another portion remaining a colony of a republican England where the Restoration never occurred, and a third part being claimed by the exiled House of Stuart.
- Tunnel Through the Deeps is a book by Harry Harrison in which, due to the fact it was John Cabot, not Christopher Columbus, who discovered North America, Spain was also never unified and unable to fund Columbus. This lead to a scenario where the revolutionary war was lost and George Washington was shot as a traitor. The main character is a descendant of Washington who feels tarred by his family's bad reputation whilst working on a transatlantic tunnel between the British Isles and the Northern American colonies.
- The Two Georges takes place in an alternate timeline where George Washington and King George III were able to negotiate a peaceful settlement to the problems between Britain and the colonies. In the 20th century, the North American Union consists of most of North America and is a vital part of the British Empire. The plot of the book concerns the theft of the titular "The Two Georges", a famous painting commemorating George Washington meeting with King George. The painting is held for ransom by the Sons Of Liberty, a racist, terrorist organization seeking independence for the North American Union from Britain.
- In The Year of the Hangman, the American Revolution was swiftly crushed in 1777. The rebellion has thus gone underground, revolting against the British in more covert ways than open war. The story ends on an ambiguous note, as the British protagonist has decided to join the rebellion, but much of its leadership like Benjamin Franklin and George Washington are now dead.
- Saturday Night Live had a skit in which the Pentagon had gotten sick of politicians arguing over what the founders would have wanted. So they invent a Time Machine to settle everyone's questions once and for all. George Washington (played by Russell Brand of all people) is brought to the present, but he's so freaked out by modern times that he goes crazy and ends up being killed by Nancy Pelosi (played by Kristen Wiig). The sketch ends with the Pentagon guy (played by Jason Sudeikis) stepping outside and seeing the British flag flying over the U.S. Capitol, to which he says "Oh uh, that's not good!"
- Sliders: The "Prince of Wails" episode had the cast slide to an Alternate Universe where the US was under British control and George Washington had been executed as a traitor. Members of the cast then tell a member of the royal family after rescuing him that "Why don't you give democracy a go?" as though he should never have heard of it... despite the United Kingdom having been a Constitutional Monarchy and Parliamentary Democracy since 1688 so he'd know what democracy is.
- The second part of the popular Half-Life mod, "Timeline", called "Iced Earth", takes place in a world where the colonies never revolted and the US is under British rule (the Earth is also in the grip of a new Ice Age, hence the title).
- The Fairly OddParents had "Twistory", which eventually got banned from airing on Nickelodeon as it was considered to take the anti-British sentiment a bit too far. Timmy wishes the founding fathers to appear in his tree house to help him with a history report. Their removal from history, however, turns the US back into a British colony. Everyone gets bad teeth, all the houses of Dimmsdale turn into tudor thatched room cottages (despite construction being very past that point by 1772 in the UK) and there is no electricity due to Ben Franklin never discovering it — completely in ignorance of the discoveries in the fields of electromagnetism by the Englishman Michael Faraday. Timmy then has to go back in time to stop Benedict Arnold from convincing the revolutionaries to surrender.
- The Futurama episode "All the Presidents' Heads". When Fry accidentally changes history, New New York is full of London Underground signs and red double decker hoverbuses, symbols of "Western Britannia" include the Tyranny Bell and Dunkin Crumpets, and everyone wears random period outfits from the Elizabethan to the Victorian age, and speaks with really bad Cockney accents. (Even Hermes, who's from a Commonwealth country anyway.)
- One episode of Where on Earth Is Carmen Sandiego? had her going back in time and altering key points in the American Revolution, which resulted in America losing the war and the Chief speaking with a bloody British accent.