[[quoteright:340:[[UsefulNotes/TheFrenchRevolution http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Pillar10-History-French-Revolution-Delacroix_7053.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:340:''[[Theatre/LesMiserables Do you hear the people sing?...]]'']]

All [[LaResistance resistances]] are against TheEmpire. Only evil [[TheGovernment governments]] provoke rebellion. No matter [[VillainWithGoodPublicity their hold over information]], striking against the authority will never be wrong. In the land of tropes, the revolution will not be vilified. It is always a force for the good, freedom, equality, freedom, justice, [[RuleOfThree freedom]], and democracy. [[OverlyLongGag And freedom.]] (ForGreatJustice, of course.)

This isn't necessarily an unrealistic trope, as rebellions and revolutions never happen for no reason at all. They're always the expression of real, preexisting problems and grievances, often founded on economic inequality.

Even so, that doesn't mean the rebels must always choose the most liberating tactics, as in historical examples where all-too-often the rebels, both historically and in fiction, utilize barbaric tactics and regularly commit war crimes. Frequently they are the 'bad guys', [[TakeAThirdOption or they and their government]] [[EvilVersusEvil both are]]. Depending on your political views, you can find examples everywhere: UsefulNotes/CheGuevara may have his fans, but the Cuban revolution was far from an expression of "workers' power", and the long-term results are debatable. Likewise, see China or anything called a [[PeoplesRepublicOfTyranny Glorious Revolution or People's Revolution]]. On the other side of the political spectrum, ruling forces frequently use violent groups of extremists to maintain the status quo, or to reverse a recent upsetting of it. Whether it's terrorist cells in Miami, brown shirts in depression-era Germany, roving gangs in Latin America, or competing groups of fighters with a variety of non-neutral foreign backers in war-torn Middle Eastern nations, not all "rebels" are spontaneously born from the "masses' desire for freedom."

It goes almost without saying that things taking place in the modern day of the country they are made in are as likely to avert this trope as not - just ask [[Series/TwentyFour Jack Bauer]].

Contrast with TheRemnant and the DarkMessiah. When the rebels are generally good but hampered by infighting, it's WeAreStrugglingTogether. For the opposite, see TheRevolutionWillNotBeCivilized. For the case where the whole conflict really was "civilized" (for better or worse), see VelvetRevolution.

The title of this article is a pun on Music/TheRevolutionWillNotBeTelevised by Music/GilScottHeron, in case you didn't know.



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* The entire point of ''GenesisClimberMospeada'' (which became the third season of {{Robotech}}) was an armed insurgency against the Inbits occupying Earth. Any Inbits that saw the error of their treatment of humans underwent a HeelFaceTurn eventually, while those that did not defect became progressively more genocidal in attempting to wipe out the human resistance.
* The rebel group [[RedshirtArmy Katharon]] from the second season of ''{{Gundam 00}}'' is basically fighting the good fight, standing up for the neglected (and sometimes downright oppressed) Middle Eastern countries and going against the oppressive Earth Sphere Federation.
** The Anti-Earth Union Group from the earlier series ''ZetaGundam'' fills much the same role, standing against the oppressive Titans.
** And Terminal in ''GundamSeed'', who fights against [[ANaziByAnyOtherName Blue Cosmos]] which controls the [[TheFederation Earth Alliance]] and the dogmatic army of [[TheEmpire ZAFT]] which plans to cull the Natural Population
** The pilots in ''GundamWing'' attack OZ and Earth Sphere Alliance military bases in order to secure independence for the space colonies. But while the series makes it clear that war is a terrible thing, the pilots are treated as the noblest and most heroic characters in the show, While unpleasant, their actions are portrayed as totally justified, and the only people who refer to the organization that funds or controls the Gundams as terrorists are OZ officials when they're lying to the media. And the original plan was to deliver a ColonyDrop and have the Gundams mop up the survivors, they opted for this option instead.
** The League Militaire of ''[[Anime/MobileSuitVictoryGundam Victory Gundam]]'' fights only to protect the Earth and space colonies from being taking over by the crazed bloodthirsty fanatics of the Zanscare Empire since the [[TheFederation Earth Federation]] is no longer able to do so.
** All these are an interesting reversal from the original ''Anime/MobileSuitGundam'' series, in which the ''antagonists'' are the ones looking for independence.
* Mustang's rebellion in ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'' has Mustang and crew trying to take on a good portion of Central Army without killing a single person to do it. Olivier Mira Armstrong mocks Mustang for this since her soldiers are at least willing to kill. Their opponent is TheEmpire who has slaughtered their own civilians, waged war since it was founded, and plans to [[spoiler:sacrifice everyone in the country]].
** Though, in Roy's defense, it quickly becomes clear that most of the regular soldiers [[LockedOutOfTheLoop have no idea what their superiors are planning to do]] and are only doing what they truly and honestly believe to be the right thing.
* For all its attempts at down-to-earth gritty realism, the revolutionaries in ''Anime/FangOfTheSunDougram'' are always portrayed in a sympathetic light.
** Which makes it even more crushing when [[spoiler: they are crushed]]
*** [[spoiler:Not really. Deloyer does get its freedom, but Federation troops and Earth-based corporations stay though]].
* The AKB0048 are portrayed as an heroic rebel group dedicated to restoring to bringing back entertainment and cheap clean FTL drives for everyone against an evil Corporate Government.

* ''Film/ThePatriot'' plays it straight, in best Hollywood tradition. The noble RagtagBunchOfMisfits shooting surrendering British soldiers is all but glossed over, and the various atrocities of the British army are actually fabricated much of the time.
* [[TheEmpire The Galactic Empire]] in ''StarWars'' is remarkably evil, what with the racist motives and the EarthShatteringKaboom. The Rebellion, on the other hand, wore halos. This was eventually fleshed out in the ExpandedUniverse with both sides [[KickTheDog kicking]] or [[PetTheDog petting the dog]]. However the Rebellion is ''still'' much better.
** Ironically, the Confederacy of Independent Systems in the prequels is almost entirely shown as being a big business-backed attempt to rule the galaxy in the name of profit, with all of the big names fully aware of this. It's only the planets that revolt against the Republic in hope of receiving Confederacy assistance that actually believe in the moral cause beyond lip service. (If this ever came to light, it may have been what resulted in the Rebellion being looked upon so unfavorably in later years.) Also the fact they are dominated by dissident nonhuman groups no doubt helped Imperial propaganda, which doubtless is all part of the evil plan.
* ''PansLabyrinth'': A historical exception to the "If the revolutionaries are wearing brown, they're the bad guys" which tells us a bit about the SortingAlgorithmOfPoliticalIdeologies: If you want the DirtyCommies to be the good guys, the bad guys pretty much have to be fascists.
** We still see them doing the old "[[ObligatoryWarCrimeScene line up soldiers to shoot them in the head]]" shtick that the fascist military was doing itself earlier.
** Not to mention that the rebels ''already'' lost the war; throughout the film, they're basically on a constant retreat.
* ''Film/MontyPythonsLifeOfBrian'' subverts the usual roles of the evil Roman Empire and heroic rebels, as the various rebel factions [[WeAreStrugglingTogether spend too much time fighting each other]] to do anything about the Romans. "The Judean People's Front? Splitters!"
--> "All right, but apart from the sanitation, medicine, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh water system and public health, what have the Romans ever done for us?"
--> " Brought peace?"
--> "Oh, peace - shut up!"
* Played painfully straight in ''Film/BlackMamaWhiteMama''. The government is a dog-raping bureaucracy that is really just another gang, and the revolutionaries are Big *** Heroes, with a Che Guevara-like leader, and aided by a beautiful, blond American woman. The film never goes into much detail about exactly ''why'' the government is so bad, or what exactly what the guerillas are fighting for. It was the [[GrandfatherClause 70's though]]!
* In ''Film/SleepingDogs'', though two members of LaResistance ''were'' revealed to have framed an innocent man (the main character, Smith) for a bombing, the guerrillas overall are portrayed being better by far than the brutal [[StateSec Special Police Force]] they fight.
* ''Film/TheBattleshipPotemkin'' and any other Soviet depiction of the Russian Revolution. For obvious reasons, Western depictions of the same never play this completely straight and will usually portray it as a FullCircleRevolution.
* Averted in a few films of ''Literature/LesMiserables'' made at points of anti-Communist hysteria, which portray Enjolras as a dangerous kook, and Marius as a wide-eyed innocent caught up in his overzealous mission.

* ''Literature/HonorHarrington'' makes a caricature of the People's Republic of Haven at every opportunity. Its post-Revolution government is treated as more or less evil incarnate.
** The second revolution, however, gets treated much more sympathetically. Of course, the ringleaders had spent the books immediately preceding that event being quietly subversive and sympathetic.
** Since the political history of Haven is blatantly that of revolutionary France (the Robespierre analogue is even called Rob S. Pierre) this is heavily based on the behavior of the real-life Committee of Public Safety. And then things go OffTheRails with the Napoleon analog of the series.
* In Victor Hugo's ''Literature/LesMiserables'', of course the heroes of the French Revolution proper and the meager student rebellion of the book's later chapters are portrayed as heroic defenders of the common man, right down to the token drunkard. To balance the scale, however, the saintly and sympathetic Bishop of Digne is described as a once-noble victim of the Revolution of 1789, and early in the book has a debate with a dying revolutionary regarding who deserves more pity, the oppressed and hated poor, or the nobles who are murdered for a crime that is not their fault. [[spoiler:The poor win.]]
* {{Deconstructed}} and {{reconstructed}} in the ''Literature/InheritanceCycle''. Oromis challenges Eragon to explain ''why'' he opposes the Empire. Most of the Empire's subjects, Oromis points out, are decent people and a war would have negative consequences for them. Eragon counters that unless Galbatorix is overthrown, his rule will never end, so upheaval over a single time is better than an eternity of oppression.
* Usually averted in the StarTrekNovelVerse. Rebel movements are often very ambiguous and/or complex. For example, the Silgov in ''Literature/StarfleetCorpsOfEngineers'', though clearly victimized, are presented as questionable in some regards themselves, willing to victimize Koa in turn in order to get what they want. The X'Mari Resistance, meanwhile, are sympathetic, but clearly no saints. One of the best examples is in the novel ''Literature/DiplomaticImplausibility''. On taD, while the al'Hmatti are indeed victimized by Klingon oppression, at least one Klingon overseer is genuinely upset to discover an al'Hmatti he thought was a friend was a terrorist/freedom fighter. His distress when the al'Hmatti in question turns on him is portrayed with great sympathy. Both Klingon and al'Hmatti are treated with respect by the author throughout. Finally, the Nachri rebels are questionable in conduct, too, although their grievances may well be legitimate.
* Deconstructed in ''OneJustMan'', where the anti-hero deliberately sets out to wreck the criminal justice system on the assumption that whatever They are forced to replace it with Has To Be Better Than This, leading to a) the collapse of civil government under rampant crime and b) its apparent replacement by country-wide martial law.
* {{Subverted}} in ''Mockingjay'' several times, most notably when [[spoiler: the rebels fire-bomb Capitol children and their own medics in a FalseFlagOperation towards the end of the book]].
* In MichaelFlynn's ''Literature/SpiralArm'' novel ''On the Razor's Edge'', Gidula tells Donovan that his own attack, in his pre-amnesiac days as Padaborn, had killed many innocents, but they can stage a more effective one.
* Subverted in Literature/ShadowChildren: The Tyrannical Population Police have cut down on rations and are forcing people to join. When [[TheHero Luke]] saves and gives a gun to some citizens, they shoot the officer in self-defense as the first act of the revolution. The second involves them going up to a truck driver and executing him because he worked for the government (which many people were doing because they would cut off rations if one didn't). The final book explores this, while some rebels, like Mr. Talbot's group and the kids, fight for equality and freedom, others, like Otto, fight so they can gain control of the government, and even absorbs some of the former leaders of the group into his new government. Publicly, the revolution is always portrayed as a positive force, even as the new government is clearly making a power play and manipulating the press back against the shadow children.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/BabylonFive'':
** Plays this trope straight. Not only is there the big resistance against President Clark, but Mars and Proxima 3 are also rebelling and generally seen as oppressed planets under the thumb of the increasingly fascist Earth Forces.
** Some cells of the Mars Resistance do use terrorist tactics such as bombings that kill civilians (though they take place offscreen). Sheridan's forces tell them in no uncertain terms that this has to stop if they are going to work together. Since they have no chance of winning without coordination, it does.
** [[SubvertedTrope Subverted]] later when rogue telepaths rebel against the Psi-Corps, as while the Psi-Corps are quite literally telepathic Nazi wannabes, the tactics used by the rogues make no distinction in their targets, making it all too easy for Psi-Corps to spin it as wanton terrorism.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'':
** The Doctor tends to end up allied with the resistance against the Evil Totalitarian Despot of the Week, and rarely is the resistance shown as being anything less than favorable.
** In 'The Sunmakers', the 'resistance' -- at least initially -- are depicted as brutal, self-interested and venal criminals out for themselves rather than any higher purpose; it's only when the Doctor effectively takes over that he starts directing them to a better purpose.
** [[AvertedTrope Averted]] in 'The Power of Kroll'. While the human colonists are cold blooded and ruthless the natives are little better, threatening to murder the Doctor and Romana, as well as skewering the BigBad with graphically bloody results. The ending offers little hope for improvement, as the Doctor cheerfully encourages them and the sole surviving colonist on the base to peacefully work out their differences, a sentiment coldly shot down as they prowl around him and ominous music plays.
* ''Series/{{Firefly}}'':
** While this show's revolution is already over and failed, despite the rather ugly mess it caused, it's looked back on rather favorably. We didn't get to see a lot of Alliance oppression before ''Film/{{Serenity}}'', but the Academy and the Blue Hands and what they did to River was pretty damned evil. There are some indications that the Browncoats were not all squeaky-clean, though; in "Bushwhacked" an Alliance officer implies that he personally encountered prisoners who had been tortured by Browncoats, and in the tie-in comics there were extremists known as "Dust Devils" who kept on fighting after the war ended, performing terrorist attacks on civilians and soldiers.
** The implication is that, overall, the Alliance wasn't generally tyrannical. It's greatest fault was, as River Tam said in ''Film/{{Serenity}}'', that it is "meddlesome." WordOfGod has it that the Core worlds generally were more progressive than the outlying worlds, and the poor living conditions in the outer worlds were unnecessary. The formerly leading worlds of the Independents are the ones with aristocracy and slavery (though the connection isn't clearly drawn in {{Firefly}}). Malcolm Reynolds is an {{Antihero}}, but his desire for independence is set against the tendency of the Alliance to overreach, which could lead to disaster.
* ''Politibongo'': This German children's TV show cranks this trope up to 11. The revolution might be stupid and constantly messing things up which their contact on earth as to fix for them, but they [[WhiteAndGreyMorality never are evil]].
* ''Series/{{Revolution}}'': Played with. The Monroe Republic is a dictatorship that will terrorize and kill anyone who dares to stand up to them. A number of the rebels are genuinely good. [[Recap/RevolutionS1E2ChainedHeat Episode 2]] shows that the rebels are considered traitors and terrorists by Monroe. [[Recap/RevolutionS1E3NoQuarter Episode 3]] shows that any rebel who sells out his comrades will be killed by the militia in short order, and the rebels will generally not have any sympathy for any member of the militia, former or otherwise. [[Recap/RevolutionS1E5SoulTrain Episode 5]] shows that the rebels have little teamwork between them, with one of them willing to blow up a train to kill off militia officers...and a civilian. [[Recap/RevolutionS1E9Kashmir Episode 9]] shows that the rebels are willing to rough up Miles Matheson in interrogation and have even adopted military ranks...too bad they didn't notice that a mole had been in their ranks for years. [[Recap/RevolutionS1E11TheStand Episode 11]] has Monroe deciding to exterminate every single rebel in the Monroe Republic. [[Recap/RevolutionS1E13TheSongRemainsTheSame Episode 13]] shows that the rebels are not going to show mercy to any militia member they capture, but the militia is generally unsympathetic anyway. [[Recap/RevolutionS1E14TheNightTheLightsWentOutInGeorgia Episode 14]] onward has the rebels and 200 Georgian soldiers working together to fight Monroe, making the number 300. [[spoiler: Unfortunately, [[Recap/RevolutionS1E17TheLongestDay episode 17]] has one drone strike kill off so many men that the number goes down from 300 to 30. It's not clear how many of those 30 men were rebels and Georgians. Finally, [[Recap/RevolutionS1E18Clue episode 18]] has the rebel leader Wayne Ramsay killed off]]. All in all, you can generally root for the resistance, but they are certainly not angels.
* ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine'':
** Toyed with this trope with the Maquis story arcs. While generally portrayed as sympathetic (former) Federation citizens who are following their own personal consciences, the Maquis were known for using terrorist tactics (Major Kira even chastised one for still thinking like a Starfleet Officer trying to win a political victory) and escalating violence rather than diplomacy. While they never really cross the MoralEventHorizon (well, except for that time they used biological and chemical weapons to force the Cardassians to abandon several contested colonies), many Starfleet officers were left feeling betrayed when peers abandoned their oaths of loyalty and turned their back on the Federation they had sworn to protect. That, and they had a bad habit of actively stealing Federation weapons and supplies to support their war effort.
** The whole situation is played very GreyAndGrayMorality with both the Federation and the Maquis in the right but at odds with each other and neither happy about it (rather than the standard Star Trek pattern of both sides of the conflict being revealed to be in the wrong). The Maquis' greatest flaw is generally shown as being caught up in the cycle of violence and revenge, when they should have taken advantage of several opportunities to negotiate a peace settlement and end the conflict.
** The former Bajoran Resistance also weren't unambiguously good, with Kira admitting that she was a terrorist, with one episode ("The Darkness and the Light") having her confronted by a Cardassian maimed from one of her bombings who had gone a RoaringRampageOfRevenge against the members of her cell and complains that he was only a civilian worker in the building she bombed. She counters angrily by saying that all Cardassians on Bajor were guilty, military or not, and legitimate targets.
* ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'': [[SubvertedTrope Subverted]] in the episode "Resistance". Instead of the usual selfless support of outsider Good Guys, the underground battling the despotic Mocra only help Voyager's crew in exchange for payment in medical supplies, and aren't the least bit interested in helping free Tuvok and B'Elanna from prison. As their leader points out: "If I could get people out of there, I'd free my own first!" In fact, ''Voyager'' effectively subverted this trope several times. The episodes "Nightingale" and "Flesh and Blood" both involve a crew member attempting to help a resistance group, only to find out the situation is more complicated than good rebels vs. evil empire.

* Music/TheRevolutionWillNotBeTelevised by Music/GilScottHeron, announces a revolution in a cool, but self-assured way that makes the listener believe that it will be a just event.

* In the ''VideoGame/MegaManZero'' series, Zero is found by the Resistance to Neo Arcadia, an empire that Zero's friend X (hero of the previous series) created with the best of intentions, only for it to go bad after he left. The Resistance is full of spunky, heroic types with [[LaResistance French names]], and they're always in the right -- with one major subversion. Elpizo, the leader in ''Mega Man Zero 2'', is zealous and aggressive; when his new methods fail, he goes nuts and becomes the game's BigBad.
** In ''VideoGame/MegaManXCommandMission'', there's a Rebellion, and they're not very nice guys. But there's also a ''Resistance'' to the Rebellion, and they're swell. X gladly helps them fight the Rebellion... until the big twist, when it turns out that [[spoiler:BOTH groups are basically good and have been manipulated by TheManBehindTheMan.]]
* ''VideoGame/DeusEx'' initially seems to be subverting this trope, as the National Secessionist Forces (NSF) begin the game clearly portrayed as TheRevolutionWillNotBeCivilized, terrorists who blew up the Statue of Liberty and don't hesitate to threaten innocent civilians for their cause. As the game progresses, it turns out that the NSF [[spoiler: really are mostly heroic, and were framed for the bombings by an evil government conspiracy, while the hostage situations were desperation tactics from panicked individual grunts]].
** Also the French Silhouette are portrayed like a bunch of young and relatively harmless idealists, who limit their action to information warfare. In the sequel [[spoiler: they win and immediately join the Illuminati to introduce hidden authoritarian government]].
* ''CityOfHeroes'' both averts this and plays it straight with the Praetorian Resistance faction. On one hand, many Resistance Crusaders engage in acts of deliberate terrorism. While the Warden faction of the Resistance tends to be more heroic, the Crusader faction is far more visible than the innocent doctors and reporters trying to protect the people from Cole and his cronies (and on occasion [[WeAreStrugglingTogether their own comrades]]). On the other hand, [[spoiler:Cole ''really is'' as evil as the Resistance makes him out to be, and by the end of the Neutropolis quest chains, even Responsibility Loyalists are horrified by his plans.]]
** WhatCouldHaveBeen: Issue 24 would have dealt with Calvin Scott's last gasp. Embittered by the revelation that [[spoiler:his marriage to Aurora Borealis, the woman he founded the resistance to save, was just a delusion]], Scott redirects his rebellious tendencies onto Primal Earth at the urging of the Council. The MoralEventHorizon is crossed when he drops a bomb onto the First Ward Refugee Island, nearly killing the people he wants to "save". The Resistance definitely isn't wouldn't have been blue skies and grannies anymore.
* Subverted in ''VideoGame/{{Starcraft|I}}'', where the Sons of Korhal rebel against TheEmpire, and eventually institute their own, equal or worse dictatorship in its place.
* Played straight in ''VideoGame/StarcraftII'', where Raynor's Raiders are trying to bring down the Dominion that they helped create in the first game.
** Though YMMV on whether this is this trope or ProtagonistCenteredMorality. Raynor's Raiders are exploiting the very real Zerg crisis, which has killed ''billions'' of people, in order to further their political cause while the main Dominion forces are busy trying to save humanity from Kerrigan. Their antics include unleashing a gigantic Mech of Mass Destruction on a rampage through a civilian city during a parade, and releasing some of the most violent psychopathic criminals loose on the sector.
*** Saving Humanity how? By leaving the Fringe World to fend for themselves as Mengsk pulls his forces to protect only the Core Worlds? Turning away refugees or killing them if they don't leave? Additionally, the release of the Specters may not necessarily equate to releasing psychopaths. Talking to Doctor Hansen reveals that there isn't anything psychologically wrong with them.
** It would be more accurate to say that Raiders like [[KnightInShiningArmor Matt Horner]] and [[spoiler: [[TheGoodPrince Prince Valerian]]]] want this to be the case, ones like [[BloodKnight Tychus]] and [[TokenEvilTeammate Gabriel Tosh]] want [[TheRevolutionWillNotBeCivilized the opposite]], and [[TheChainsOfCommanding Raynor himself]] is [[IDidWhatIHadToDo stuck in the middle]].
* Also subverted in the first two ''AceCombat'' games, where the player character is part of a mercenary squadron fighting against the revolution.
* Played with in YggdraUnion. Yggdra and her army are unambiguously good people who believe that they're doing the right thing. Yggdra's enemies, Gulcasa and ''his'' army, are exactly the same. Both characters are revolutionaries--Gulcasa overthrew his country's corrupt government via coup d'etat; Yggdra seeks to reclaim her country from Gulcasa's invasion--but Gulcasa is a WellIntentionedExtremist who believes he has to conquer the world to save the poor and weak, and Yggdra has been raised since birth to believe that she has an OmniscientMoralityLicense. [[KillEmAll The body count by the end of the game includes almost every character who isn't in Yggdra's army.]] [[WhatTheHellHero The narrative doesn't hesitate to call you out repeatedly.]]
* RedFaction with 1 and Guerilla, Ultor and Earth Defense Force are absolutely evil tyrants who have NO redeeming personalities and the revolution rarely commits acts of genuine evil. 2 is slightly more ambiguous.
* Subverted in ''VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim''. The game starts with the player and some Stormcloak rebels ending up victims of the Empire (the player almost gets beheaded despite not being a rebel). This gives the player a positive view of the Stormcloaks. But as the game progresses, it soon turns into a GreyAndGreyMorality situation as it's shown the Stormcloaks and the Imperials both have their flaws. The Stormcloaks' leader is racist and stubborn, but the Empire is oppressing a religion at the behest of the super racist Thalmor (it agreed to do so in a treaty, but the necessity of the treaty is questionable as it was one of the initial demands in the first place). Both sides are happy to kill the other and the civil war means that the Empire may be less able to defend itself against the Thalmor.
* The Militia of the Frontier in ''VideoGame/{{Titanfall}}'' only want the iron-fisted IMC out of their homeworlds while the IMC are regularly seen committing atrocities against non-militants.

* Played with in ''VisualNovel/HatePlus''. Many of the log documents you read through are from the perspective of the ''Mugungwa's'' government, who ''are'' corrupt, ruthlessly suppressing dissent to maintain the status quo on the ship. But at the same time, they're trying to do what's in everyone's best interests, not just themselves, even if doing so involves crackdowns on democratic protests or introducing blatantly corrupt laws that allow them to maintain a virtual oligarchy-dictatorship.
** In the end, the revolution wins, and ends up regressing the ship's society to a totalitarian dictatorship even more brutal than the previous one.

* Played with in ''Webcomic/GirlGenius'', where [[TheEmpire the Wulfenbach Empire]] is the only thing that prevents Europe from plunging into the total bloody anarchy of not long ago, but the rather sinister revolutionaries just have to put on a good show and people cheer for them, in large part ''because'' of this very trope.
** Well that and the fact that most of the ruling authorities are [[MadScientist power-crazed amoral lunatics who are equally likely to]] PetTheDog as they are to turn it into cheese ForScience probably doesn't help the dispositions of the common peasants said revolutionaries recruit from frequently.
*** Since said revolutionaries are just as likely if not more so than the current rulers to suffer from ScienceRelatedMemeticDisorder, it's fair to say the common people are really faced with a choice of evil or...slightly less evil.
*** In Many cases the revolutionaries are the ruling authority that resent that the Empire won't let them go to war with their neighbors.
* In ''Webcomic/{{Sinfest}}'', [[http://www.sinfest.net/archive_page.php?comicID=4252 Trike Girl obviously thinks she can pull this off.]]
* In ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'', what little we've seen of [[spoiler:Alpha!Rose and alpha!Dave]]'s actions as LaResistance against [[spoiler:Betty Crocker/The Condesce]] have been portrayed as completely justified and reasonable. To be fair, when your opponent is trying to enslave the earth and is accidentally [[ApocalypseHow killing everyone]] in the process, it's pretty hard to do worse. It also might help that all our information so far comes from Dirk, who looks up to [[spoiler:alpha!Dave]] pretty heavily.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* In Literature/TheDoctorsOfTheCatFamily the leader of the revolution is OK with Thomas healing thier captured enemies.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* WesternAnimation/SheRaPrincessOfPower led an example of a good rebellion...though with the majority of her RoguesGallery being even more incompetent than that of her SpearCounterpart [[WesternAnimation/HeManAndTheMastersOfTheUniverse1983 He-Man]] with a ZeroPercentApprovalRating to boot, it's a wonder she wasn't running Etheria by the end of the first season.
* Inverted on ''WesternAnimation/ChallengeOfTheGoBots''. Gobotron was a democracy, and Cy-Kill's Renegades were a bunch of war-mongering thugs.
* ''WesternAnimation/FairlyOddParents''' take on the American Revolution goes into this trope rather shamelessly. They even show what modern-day America would be like, were it still under British rule; a nation of bad-toothed [[EvilBrit Evil Brits]] stuck in the early 19th century, and still regularly ravaged by the taxman.

-->''"Treason doth never prosper. What's the reason?''\\
''For if it prosper, none dare call it 'treason.'"''