Created By: 1774689 on June 28, 2012 Last Edited By: 1774689 on November 16, 2012

Reworked Britain

The Influence of the British Isles divided, expanded or radically altered otherwise.

Name Space:
Main
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Trope
Similar to Invaded States of America, Divided States of America and Expanded States of America, this trope applies a similar mechanism to the British Isles. Although this happened in Real Life too in the past, this is mostly Alternate History, but with Great Britain as the main area of interest in the story.

Examples:
  • Doomsday had Scotland sealed off from the world in a great plague. It is reflected in their coat of Arms, omitting the St. Andrew's Cross.
  • Britain during the War Of The Roses.
  • The British Empire, just about the furthest known historical expansion of British power.
  • Nineteen Eighty Four, where Britain is basically Airstrip One.
  • Thursday Next series depicts Wales as having separated from England as a socialist republic.
  • V for Vendetta, the comics make Britain into the logical and somewhat extreme conclusion of the policies of Margaret Thatcher.
  • There is a Doctor Who storybook in which Cornwall is a separate country.
  • Britain under King Arthur frequently commands quite the influence, extending beyond the usual Isles.
    • An example would be The Once and Future King, where early on in the second book England expands its influence first to all surrounding isles, then to pretty much the entirety of Europe after the defeat of Emperor Lucius and all the kings he brought with him for support.
    • Both the Alliterative Morte Arthur and the Stanzaic Morte Arthur have Arthur fighting Emperor Lucius, ruling Rome, but have Arthur stopping halfway through his conquest to quell an uprising by Mordred back in England.
  • Code Geass had the upper class flee Napoleonic influences and so they fled to the Americas, where they expanded until the established empire covered most of the Western Hemisphere.
  • The british Isles under Norman rule had several levels of expansion into France.
  • Britain in either Saxon times, Norman times, or even during the partial occupation by Denmark. The sphere of its influence was dubbed the Danelaw, where Danish law applies.
  • Before the formation of Great Britain or the United Kingdom altogether, Wales, Ireland and Scotland were separate countries.
  • under the Roman Empire, several upstart emperors used Britain as a staging ground for conquering the rest of the empire.
  • I Am Skantarios, or rather its direct sequel, Legacy Of Skantarios has England and Scotland reduced swiftly to a smattering of territories in Ireland, eventually regaining a foothold on British soil after years, granted to them by the Byzantine Empire.
  • Real Life actually shows some examples as well. William The Conqueror had his powerbase in Normandy, but conquered England as well, where it was in some views considered as a bonus to the lands he already held on the Continent.
    • Another case was Emperor Carausius using Britain as a staging point to establish his own counterpart to the Roman Empire.
    • Cnut The Great likewise ruled England, as well as Denmark, Norway and parts of Sweden and yet more posessions.

Needs More Examples, Needs a Better Description
Community Feedback Replies: 29
  • June 28, 2012
    1774689
    This concept should probably be split between the various variants mentioned in the draft version. Also, the realm of King Arthur is usually depicted as extending beyond the British Isles.
  • June 28, 2012
    ElCheViva
    In Nineteen Eighty-Four, what was once Britain is now called Airstrip One, a small province among the vast expanses of what has become Oceania.
  • June 28, 2012
    Bisected8
    • V For Vendetta features a totalitarian Britain based on an extreme version of Margaret Thatcher's policies (comic) or fascism (movie).
    • Code Geass combines this with Expanded States Of America; Britain's power base fled from the British Isles to America to escape Napolean and from there expanded the empire to cover most of the world.
  • June 28, 2012
    Lumpenprole
    ^^And yet Oceania's political system is named "Ingsoc", a corruption of "English Socialism", which suggests that at some point in the fictional history England/Britain had a political influence wide enough to encompass the Western hemisphere.
  • June 28, 2012
    HeartOfAnAstronaut
    In the Thursday Next series (or the first one at least) Wales has separated from England.
  • July 5, 2012
    AgProv
    Len Deighton's SS-GB is about life for a Scotland Yard policeman in a Britain where Germany won in 1940 - he is forced to work with the German occupiers against the resistance movement. However, commando troops are being formed in the USA for long-distance raids...
  • July 5, 2012
    triassicranger
    A story in a Doctor Who storybook has the Doctor end up in an alternative timeline where Cornwall is a separate country altogether.
  • July 5, 2012
    PaulA
    • In the Thursday Next series, Wales is an independent socialist republic.
  • July 8, 2012
    1774689
    Quite a few historical examples as well, making this Truth In Television:

    • The british Isles under Norman rule had several levels of expansion into France.
    • Britain in either Saxon times, Norman times, or even during the partial occupation by Denmark. The sphere of its influence was dubbed the Danelaw, where Danish law applies.
    • Before the formation of Great Britain or the United Kingdom altogether, Wales, Ireland and Scotland were separate countries.
    • under the Roman Empire, several upstart emperors used Britain as a staging ground for conquering the rest of the empire.
  • July 8, 2012
    Bisected8
    @1774689: You might want to give Britain Versus The UK a read;

    • "Great Britain" is a large dog shaped island, not a state. Wales, Scotland and England have always been together on it (well, since the island seperated from the mainland anyway), even before their borders were defined.
    • Wales, England, Ireland and Scotland are still seperate countries (they're just part of a larger state with a shared monarchy), indeed technically Ireland has two (only one of which is part of the UK) and devolution means that each one is more self governing (Scotland is planning a referendum, but it's unlikely they'll leave the union, particularly given it was Scotland's idea...)...England less so perhaps, since it doesn't have its own parliament.
    • Wales was a principality of England long before the union with Scotland was formed.
  • July 8, 2012
    1774689
    I do not consider myself to be remotely British as a Dutchman, so this is best left to tropers more knowledgeable about the situation. Likewise, the trope is best tended by someone knowing more about coding on this site as well. It was more that the idea had to be raised and this was the best place to do it, IMO.
  • July 8, 2012
    HeartOfAnAstronaut
    Bisected8: I think this is intended to cover various deviations from historical or current geographical arrangements, but you make a good point that we've had a lot of different rules over the last few thousand years.
  • July 8, 2012
    Bisected8
    Huh? I don't recall saying anything the contrary of the former or anything in support of the later....
  • July 9, 2012
    HeartOfAnAstronaut
    Oh, sorry. I thought that was the point you were trying to make by pointing out that stuff... Ignore that last comment then!
  • July 9, 2012
    Bisected8
    Nope, I was just correcting 1774689.
  • July 9, 2012
    AgProv
    From the same 2000AD stable as Vfor Vendetta, we have Invasion!. Originally meant, in Cold War days, to portray a Russian victory in WW 3 and invasion/occupation of the UK, this comic strip was reworked when government leant on IPC magazines, the publishers. The real-life Russians were replaced with a suspiciously similar race of mooks, the Volgs. Over 51 episodes, there is an iconic early episode where a prime minister looking not unlike Margaret Thatcher is hanged by the neck until dead. (The point of this was lost as most people reading the comic cheered and said "if only"). Every aspect of occupation by and resistance to the dastardly Volg was covered, and America Saves The Day by counter-invading occupied Europe in the last edition. Republished since as a graphic novel, it has aged badly as nobody under forty recalls there was once a Cold War and a real threat of WW 3. Although Thatcher getting hanged still provokes many to forgive the Volg much.
  • July 11, 2012
    69BookWorM69
    I'm not sure if you would put this here as well as Alternate History, but here goes:

    In the Deryni novels, one of the major kingdoms is Gwynedd, a sort of amalgam of England, Scotland and Germany with heavy emphasis on the English and Scots bits. As it happens, the Highland Scotland equivalents (Claibourne, Cassan, and Kierney) stay loyal to the King of Gwynedd, while Meara (the rough equivalent of Lowland Scotland) is the place that has rebellions against Haldane rule over the course of a century or so. This is in contrast to actual history (if I recall it correctly), in which the Lowland Scots tended to be more loyal to England (many of the landowners having estates in both countries) while the Highlands were the center of rebellion.
  • July 20, 2012
    1774689
    I would say that is is a form of Alternate History, but very much tied to Earth and mostly focusing on the British Isles. I don't think this would apply to Fantasy.
  • July 20, 2012
    69BookWorM69
    I do think Alternate History is related to this trope, but as a sibling or what I cannot say.
  • August 27, 2012
    1774689
    Total Recall 2012 also features this, using Australia, the entire continent as a massive colony, while the rest of the world is uninhabitable through chemical warfare. And there is one connection, the Fall. Britain soldiers on and has a bit of Britany and some dots on the continent with it.
  • August 27, 2012
    bwburke94
    We need to namespace the wicks before this is launched.
  • August 27, 2012
    TonyG
    Futurama, "All the President's Heads". Travelling back in time to The American Revolution, the gang accidentally botch up Paul Revere's ride, creating an alternate future where America is still part of Brittain.
  • August 28, 2012
    Arivne
    Literature
    • A Transatlantic Tunnel, Hurrah! AKA Tunnel Through The Deeps. Takes place in 1973 in an Alternate History where the Americans lost the Revolutionary War and America is still part of the British Empire.
  • November 1, 2012
    NimmerStill
    Do we really want a description that you can only understand by clicking 3 other links?
  • November 1, 2012
    robinjohnson
    In the Nineteen Eighty Four entry, there's no "basically" about it: Airstrip One is the name for Britain in that novel.

    Also, "before the formation of Great Britain" is inaccurate: Great Britain is the geographical island that includes England, Scotland and Wales, not a political entity.
  • November 2, 2012
    1774689
    Indeed, Nimmerstill, I do, for although it requires three separate links to understand it, I think this trope can act as a sort of ancestor to British counterparts of the tropes mentioned at the start of the article. I may have narrowed my vision over the past viewing only examples where this happened to the British Isles instead of Ruritania, but still. It keeps on popping up in my head that there has to be a counterpart in Europe to these tropes.
  • November 2, 2012
    NimmerStill
    ^Well I think there should be a full description of this trope that can be understood separate from all the others.
  • November 4, 2012
    TBeholder
  • November 14, 2012
    1774689
    Exactly, T Beholder, that was what I was looking for, that covers the concept. Now to find a catchy name.
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