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Always Lawful Good

"How do we know which side that bird is on? Why shouldn't it be leading us into a trap?"
"That's a nasty idea. Still—a robin, you know. They're good birds in all the stories I've ever read. I'm sure a robin wouldn't be on the wrong side."

A whole race or culture of fair and benevolent beings. Obviously, inverted Always Chaotic Evil. Sadly enough, not Truth in Television, but that's why these races exist: to show humans that they need to improve themselves.

This alignment is often justified by the race being somehow "close to Light". This trope is certainly very idealistic and is used mostly in shows with Black and White Morality. The more cynical shows love to subvert it.

Common examples of Always Lawful Good:

Both this trope and Always Chaotic Evil are less frequently used, especially with classical versions of this trope such as angels, elves, and fairies all increasingly portrayed as at best just as fallible as humanity. In extreme cases one or the other can disappear, depending whether the setting says Silly Rabbit, Idealism Is for Kids! or Silly Rabbit, Cynicism Is for Losers!. Either that, or both start to move towards the middle of the moral scale, as the setting becomes grayer in general.

Often a whole race of The Beautiful Elite or an Inhumanly Beautiful Race, since Beauty Equals Goodness. Compare Noble Profession. May be employed with Alike and Antithetical Adversaries. This is a Planet of Hats where the "hat" is being good. For this trope applied to humanity, see Humans Are Good.

Note that before adding examples to this list, just like its evil counterpart, Lawful Good is only the Trope Namer. Also, like Always Chaotic Evil, Always Lawful Good also does not necessarily mean that everybody of the race is of the same good alignment. While a race can literally be Always Lawful Good and apply for this trope, this also extends to races that are also Always Neutral Good and Always Chaotic Good, or races that have Lawful Good, Neutral Good and Chaotic Good individuals, but no evil individuals of any kind.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime and Manga 
  • Wedding Peach have the angels fill this role. Even the worst of them is a Knight Templar who thinks the angels aren't doing enough to help the humans.

    Film 
  • The Mystics in The Dark Crystal. Justified in that they're the innocent, non-violent spiritual half of a species that became divided into two races, the other being the Always Chaotic Evil Skeksis.

    Literature 
  • The Hazers from Clifford Simak's Way Station.
  • Redwall: Mice, otters, hedgehogs, moles, hares, badgers, squirrels. Shrews are generally Chaotic Good (but always chaotic); voles are good but sometimes whiny.
  • The eledhel (“elves of light”) in The Riftwar Cycle live in a perfect Hidden Elf Village Utopia with no internal strife. All named eledhel to date have been unfailingly wise, noble and heroic. Notable because in this world, they are the same race as the dark elves (moredhel), who are war-like and hostile, differing only in their mentality and lifestyle. Though it is possible for a moredhel to embrace the eledhel way of thinking and thus Return and become eledhel, the reverse does not happen. Ever. Making this a case of Incorruptible Pure Pureness.
  • Animorphs:
    • Deconstructed with the Andalites. At first, all we know about them is that they're fighting the yeerks, so the Animorphs assume that all of them are good - Jake even describes them as "the good guys of the galaxy" in an early book. Starting in The Hork-Bajir Chronicles, we see that the Andalites are just as bad as the yeerks, (who were a deconstruction of Always Chaotic Evil), just in different ways.
    • Played straight with the Pemalites, a highly developed and joyful race that praised life and abhored violence, so much that when the Always Chaotic Evil Howlers arrived, Pemalites failed to muster any defence and were exterminated.
  • The Houyhnhnms of Gullivers Travels. They are incredibly honorable, intelligent horses that live alongside feral, deformed humans (called "Yahoos") that appear to be Always Chaotic Evil, though this is later revealed to be a prejudice on the Houyhnhnms' part.
  • Adventure Hunters: War Golems are a race of Martial Pacifists. Every single one of them abhors violence. If you leave them alone, they will leave you alone. If you attack them, they will wreck you. This is because their personalities are copies of their creator, who was himself a pacifist.
  • Sylphrena, and other honorspren, from The Stormlight Archive are literally made out of Lawful Good-ness.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The Organians, and possibly the Metrons, on the original Star Trek. For that matter, most of Star Fleet itself is portrayed as something like this (with a few bad seeds), until the existence of Section 31 was revealed (after Gene Roddenbury' s death, of course), and even they were Well Intentioned Extremists with Unscrupulous Hero tendencies rather than outright villains.
  • In Stargate SG-1, the Nox always qualify, the Asgard usually do, and the Ancients occasionally do (when they're not Always Lawful Stupid), depending on which episode in which series you're watching.
  • Vorlons in Babylon 5 turn out to be another subversion as they are just as petty and terrorizing as their opposing species, the Shadows; while Kosh was literally Lawful Good (for certain values of Lawful; he had no qualms about encouraging The Chosen One to bend the rules when necessary to maintain long-term order) the Vorlons as a whole turn out to be merely Always Lawful (Ulkesh being definitely Lawful Evil).
  • The Eternals in Doctor Who were originally intended to be this, although not much is revealed about them in the show and the Expanded Universe depicts them as having their fair share of villains. Some other species, such as Star Whales and Thals, have also only been seen in a positive light.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
  • In the Lorwyn Block of Magic: The Gathering, pretty much every race aside from the elves and fairies is generally benevolent on the majority, including the black aligned boggarts (though there are a few exceptions here and there, of course, like the kithkin Gaddock Teeg). Come Shadowmoor, and everyone becomes Always Chaotic Evil, with the exception of the elves, which pull a 180º and become the most benevolent race around.note 

    Videogames 
  • Archons in Age of Wonders.
  • World of Warcraft has the naaru.
    • The Tauren and Draenei—both of which seem to be overwhelmingly honorable on a cultural level—have often been accused of being this (or worse). However, both races have at least a few bad seeds (and representation among Equal-Opportunity Evil organizations).
  • The Toads and Yoshis in Super Mario Bros.. The RPGs have introduced exceptions, though never quite to the same level of outright villainy as the Koopa Troop.
    • The Star Sprites of Mario & Luigi are portrayed as benevolent angel-like protectors of the Mushroom Kingdom, even if Starlow, the only prominently featured member of their race, is portrayed as a bit of a Little Miss Snarker.
  • Deconstructed in, of all things, Touhou. The Celestials are explicitly stated to be Always Lawful Good, since that's the requirement to become a Celestial. However, the only Celestial to be named in the story, Hinanai Tenshi, is one hell of a rabble rouser because she finds herself unable to live up to this standard.
  • If a race in The Legend of Zelda is made up of NPCs who you can talk to and who don't have danger music playing when you are near them, then they're automatically this. Pretty much the only time they actually become hostile to Link is if they've been forcibly turned into monsters. May or may not be the case with the Zoras, depending on whether or not you consider the pre-Ocarina of Time Zoras to be a separate race.

    Webcomics 

    Western Animation 
  • Mormons in South Park, although this tends to make them incredibly annoying for everybody else.
  • Snarf's race in ThunderCats are incapable of having evil in their hearts. This makes them immune to Mind Control and other snares without making them unwilling to fight.
  • Dragons: Riders of Berk: "Animal House" establishes that all dragons have 'protective instincts' for humans and especially their riders. Every 'evil' action committed by a dragon in the series thus far is either: a mother looking for its child, brought on by a toothache, or ignorance that their action was causing trouble.
  • The Smurfs. They have petty emotions (greed, selfishness, pride, and so on), but they'll end up doing the right thing - even an artificial smurf (like Smurfette.)


Always Chaotic EvilOtherness TropesAmusing Alien
All-Loving HeroHeroesAnti-Antichrist
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Magic: The GatheringImageSource/Tabletop GamesAngelic Tropes

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