There Are No Global Consequences
So you're living in The Unmasqued World
, have the aliens out in the streets, vampires out of the coffin, etc. etc.
That has been accomplished through The Reveal
, in a flashy and dramatic fashion. However, people just go on.
, as dramatic as it was, leads to no worse thing than maybe a little Fantastic Racism
or a Have You Tried Not Being a Monster?
No crazy military group will hunt you for your powers, or try to replicate them.
No religions will spontaneously form or be destroyed as the Revelation of You goes around.
No political leaders hurry out to make contacts, pass laws, etc.
No scientists tear their hair out in frustration, spew around theories and ask you to Just Think of the Potential
. Nobody will sneak in at night and try to steal your Transformation Trinket
or Clingy MacGuffin
to be a little super. And Alice and Bob
still go to school, stay out of trouble, keep their heads down and maybe join the "I love aliens!" fanclub.
No matter how widespread the information, nobody cares. Things slip quickly and quietly into Mundane Fantastic
, with little ruckus.
See also Reed Richards Is Useless
, No Endor Holocaust
, World of Weirdness
, No Such Thing as Wizard Jesus
, and Law of Conservation of Normality
. Compare Extra-Strength Masquerade
, when the Masquerade doesn't even break despite events that should
break it. Compare Like Reality Unless Noted
, where everything sure seems like real life until someone mentions something that couldn't possibly exist in real life.
open/close all folders
Anime & Manga
- Messed around a bit with in Guyver. After X-Day when Kronos unveils themselves and take over the world there are major shake-ups at high levels of government and the protagonists are forced further into hiding since their pursuers no longer have to worry keeping up the Masquerade. However for the average person on the street who is not a member of La Résistance the only real difference is recruiting ads and posters and a Zoanoid Boy Band.
- Averted pretty handily in Cannon God Exaxxion. The Riofaldians integrate themselves into Earth culture and their impressive technology revolutionizes humanity... to the point that when they reveal their plans for invasion, they control almost all of the technology on the planet.
- Averted in the manga Watashi No Messiah Sama. Once the protagonist is forced to do The Reveal about his powers in front of the media and military and declare that he would go against the world if he had to, things get chaotic very quickly. His school sides with him against the world and secedes from Japan, declaring independence with armies of tanks and ninjas led by a eerily hyper-competent teacher, while different nations send in special ops forces to wipe the protagonist and his companions out, which results in a secondary character getting shot and dying, causing her love interest (the so-far unawakened Big Bad) to perform the biggest Face-Heel Turn of the series, propelling the main plot to its finale.
- Most people in Furinkan know about Ranma's curse. That means they know magic exists, for one. They talk about it as if they were discussing the weather.
- You may wonder why the government or army is not interested in groups of One Man Armies running around and regularly damaging buildings - especially since there's a major JGSDF base in Nerima.
- The second season of Darker Than Black shows absolutely no consequence blowing the lid on the existence of the Contractors. The general public are somewhat nervous of them, but the can still blend in comfortably with society. Government agencies still use Contractors and Dolls as pawns; the only difference is that they can acknowledge them in their diplomatic dealings with each other.
- The end of the YuYu Hakusho manga screws continuity in favor of allowing the main characters an easy commute, and (due to Koenma's coup) opens the borders between the human and demon dimensions, relying on Enki's noninterference laws to keep everything smooth, and the Masquerade is also abandoned, though it takes a while for humans to start believing in the demon population. This goes quite calmly.
- One of the reasons it goes calmly is that Togashi retconned that demons aren't actually prone to violent crime, and all the proof that they were was due to Enma Senior's propaganda. This despite the fact that they come form a feudal society where Asskicking Equals Authority is the only thing anyone recognizes, and a lot of them have humans as their natural diet.
- On the other hand, dispossessed political elements within the spirit world stage a terrorist coup in response and nearly blow up the world with a laser cannon. They do this wearing keffiyeh for no reason whatsoever.
- In DearS, when the eponymous aliens arrive in Japan, they make quite a stir...but that's because they're hot. They have advanced technology, but none of it percolates out into the general public, and they smoothly integrate into society without so much as a ripple.
- The existence of superhumans rarely has any longterm sociological effects in comics save for Fantastic Racism against mutants — but not against those with any other Super Hero Origin. Sometimes the effects of living in a world full of not only superbeings, but aliens, magical beings, Alternate Universes, Time Travel, and Mad Scientists who hoard their technology is explored in Elseworlds such as Kingdom Come and in purpose-specific Deconstructions or Reconstructions, but for the most part, it's Like Reality Unless Noted, no matter how unrealistic that might be.
- The lack of wild reaction could be caused by the fact that the heroes were there all the time. Sure, there were periods that were super-light, but every "normal" remembers when the heroes were around. If they ever leave, we know they'll always come back. In the DC Universe, the first superhero was actually the first human. He invented fire. So, a paleolithic Reed Richards actually helped people.
- Although it should be noted that Marvel has SHIELD (and it's many spin-off agencies) to handle this, and as of Civil War the government has taken a more active stance in the superhuman world.
- The main big two comic book universes also have the existence of the supernatural known to the public. Proof that souls exist, demons are real, etc. would have profound implications for our society, especially for religions.
- Deities also should make a difference. Marvel has mounds of evidence for the existence of Greek and Norse deities, which should have more of an effect on religion. DC has more or less equal evidence for Greek, Egyptian, and Judeo-Christian, explaining the lack of departure from said religions there, although not the lack of flocking to them.
- This varies. Knowledge of the existence of the Norse pantheon in Marvel comics, for example, might be no older than Thor's time as a New York-based superhero. Thanks to Comic Book Time, that's probably only 10 to 15 years. It's plausible that there would be a modern Aesir-worshipping movement after that much time but then again plausible that there wouldn't be, considering how many nigh-godlike beings there are in this world that don't claim to be gods or care about being worshipped. Some Marvel continuities, in particular the 2099 line, are set further in the future and do indeed worship Thor and show other cultural impacts of twentieth-century "age of heroes".
- At least one story in the Thor comics (right before Walt Simonson's legendary run) involved Thor discovering a cult in Chicago (portrayed as good hearted but misguided) that publically worshipped him - he responded by making a comment to the effect that he no longer desired worshippers. The same storyline introduced a Fundamentalist Christian supervillain named "The Crusader".
- They know that Thor and Zeus exist, but that doesn't mean they believe they are gods. I expect the average modern citizen in the Marvel or DC universes believes something like "In ancient times, people with superhuman powers were worshipped as gods; but in this modern age, we know they're just superheroes."
- This very explanation is how in-universe atheists like Mr. Terrific justify their beliefs.
- This is also the approach taken during the first few volumes of The Ultimates. Thor might be a god, he might be insane, and/or he might just be a super soldier.
- Considering All Myths Are True, how could you be expected to choose any pantheon over another? If you lived in the DCU, and there was evidence for the Greek pantheon, Egyptian pantheon, and Judeo-Christian God, why wouldn't your religious deities be expected to exist as well?
- Averted in Watchmen, where the global consequences of the existence of Dr. Manhattan are numerous - notably, the existence of various gizmos made possible by his synthesizing vast stocks of rare elements or that he invented himself. Politically, because "the Superman exists and he's American", the USA has enjoyed decades of strategic superiority, which has made the Communist bloc incredibly paranoid.
- Averted quite nicely in the fourth volume of Mirage's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series. The series starts out with the Utroms, aliens who have appeared in the story before, coming to Earth and offering the planet a chance to join the larger galactic community. The narration describes how the world reacts to the offer and knowledge that aliens exist. Among other things, religions try to fit the aliens' existence into their doctrines, several regimes are overthrown, and the stock market is thrown into chaos. There're more mundane consequences, such as a vicious bidding war between toy companies for the right to produce Utrom plushies. The story resumes after the governments of the world have mostly managed to smooth things out, but the way society has changed to accommodate the aliens is a major part of the series from that point on.
- Averted in Worldwar: War of Equals. The huge amount of defense spending causes a recession and the world's geography and politics changes rapidly and this is all before the invasion. During the war, many oil processing plants on land are destroyed by Race airstrikes and the prices of oil skyrocket.
- Quietly touched on in the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids trilogy. In the final scene of the first film, the family gathers around the table to partake of an enlarged turkey dinner, and there is talk of eliminating world hunger. However, the second film shows the attempt to perfect an enlargement ray, although Wayne is now part of an official lab. The direct-to-video third film may hold the key to this apparent Canon Discontinuity: Wayne was forbidden to use the shrink ray again, under orders from a committee of the FDA and his wife Diane, despite now being president of Szalinski Labs. Let's apply some Fridge Logic: either the calorie count of enlarged food remains identical, or some other side effect of using the shrink ray as an enlarger showed up in a way that threatened the food supply and somehow ruined that dinner.
- Averted in The Sookie Stackhouse Mysteries. The U.S. is one of only a handful of countries that considers vampires legally people (read: it's illegal to hunt them down and kill them — though that doesn't stop people from doing so and using vamp blood as a potent drug). The first book mention that the citizens of Afghanistan ripped their vampire spokeswoman into bloody shreds. And there's The Brotherhood of the Sun — an anti-vamp Christian sect. This may have something to do with the fact that they eat people.
- Both averted and played straight in Pandora's Star. Humanity has changed irretrievably by the time the main story begins, and the general population is aware of this. The alien antagonists, however, are taken over by a single alien mind, which nukes the competing aliens and is oblivious or indifferent to the fact it has caused a nuclear winter on its home world, carrying out plans for an invasion as if nothing has changed.
- Cranked Up to Eleven in the Left Behind series, where the hand of God reaching down to spare Israel from the entire military might of both Russia and Ethiopia before the series begins, changes nobody's mind about religion, leaving most of the world to be Left Behind when the rapture comes. When a third of the world's population disappears (including all the children), everybody who's been Left Behind continues on as if everything were normal. All the massive changes that later follow to the world's economy, religions, and spiritual structure come about as a result of the Antichrist's manipulations, which have no earthly cause/effect relationship to the Rapture event. Yeah, there are people who don't like this series very much.
- Similar criticisms can be leveled against Jack Chick's versions of the Rapture and Tribulation.
- In The Last Continent and the accompanying The Science of Discworld, Terry Pratchett argues that a Real Life case of this was when most of humanity ignored the impact of comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 on Jupiter, apparently not making the logical leap that it could happen just as easily here.
- What's he talking about? Disaster Movies show humanity being wiped out by a comet all the time.
- And anyone who cared to know knew it could happen long before Shoemaker-Levy 9.
- Averted in the last Animorphs book. For starters, two years after the end of the war Jake is hired by the UN to train morph-capable paramilitary units to combat terrorism against alien tourists.
- In the House of Night series, vampires ostensibly suffer immense Fantastic Racism, however we find out that most popular actors, singers, and others in the entertainment industry are vampires. Vampires also were many historical figures, who were ere apparently just as influential as they were in real life. Not to mention that there's no word that the governments have any problem with the vampires keeping their own government, setting up Houses of Night in various towns (even though regular people supposedly hate the presence of vampires), and automatically having all fledglings legally emancipated. Also, even though vampirism is supposed to occur because of junk DNA and a hormonal imbalance, there's no talk at all of scientists studying vampires to find ways to prevent regular people from turning into them or, at the very least, reduce the risk of fledglings dying horrible deaths.
- Power Rangers looks like a case of no global consequences, with things exactly like real life despite Earth suffering monster attacks since 1993 and making formal First Contact in '98. But keep in mind that the government debuted their own Ranger team to deal with paranormal threats in 2000, and by 2025 aliens will have settled on earth and there'll be Space Police to deal with alien criminals. There are also hints that morphing technology is out there for those who want it, even if only a very few can get it (a private corporation studied Ranger tech in 2001; the 2007 team was publicly backed by a billionaire with his own company; and the 2008 mentor got morphers "from a guy who knew a guy who had an uncle", which to some suggests a black market). They're still lowballing the consequences by a long shot, but they're there.
- Averted in True Blood, based on The Sookie Stackhouse Mysteries novels (see above)
- The True Blood mockumentary detailing the events leading to the series mentions that within hours of vampires revealing themselves, many world cities were engulfed in panic and rioting.
- The Stargate Verse didn't have the opportunity to end the SGC's masquerade (the reveal having been slated for the movie Stargate Revolution, which ended in Development Hell) but a few alternate universes visited in Stargate SG-1 avert the trope. In "The Road Not Taken", the United States has been under under martial law for three years due to widespread riots after the president revealed the existence of aliens and the stargate program during Anubis' attack on Antarctica.
- In The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob!, Bob & Jean were afraid for Molly the Monster's safety after she was born in a lab accident, so they sent her to live with Jean's Uncle on a farm in the middle of nowhere. When they realized she was unhappy there, they let her come back home, darn the consequences... and there don't seem to have been many consequences. Most of the townsfolk concluded she's a relative of Bob's who is deformed and hairy, but otherwise harmless. Well, they did form a small angry mob to hunt her down once, but that was Galatea's fault.
- If you start reading Shortpacked! without reading the previous works set in the same shared universe, you'd completely miss out on the fact that Shortpacked! takes place in a world where aliens have been publicly revealed to exist, it's public knowledge that the US government has reversed engineered alien technology including giant robots and spaceships, and where just a short time before Shortpacked! starts, Earth fought a war against the Martians who wanted to Kill All Humans.
- Very few people in minus seem to care that there is a omnipotent child running around causing strange things to happen— even after her actions result in aliens and the animal kingdom declaring war on the human race which is only stopped when said omnipotent child summons a giant octopus which destroys a city. After minus accidentally sends everyone to the spirit world, this trope is averted, as the smartest people who ever lived get together and force her to sort things out.
- In the Paradise setting, humans are changed into Funny Animals, but the effects of the change are Invisible to Normals who see the Changed as the people they used to be…until the setting's Weirdness Censor stops working. After the unmasquing, the world seems to go on largely the same as usual (with one or two notable exceptions), with Changed being generally accepted into society. This is probably due to lingering effects of the "Reality Distortion Field", which may still be influencing humanity even as it lets them see the Changed's true faces. (It may also be that stories in which more global consequences do happen simply haven't been written yet.)
- Also partially justified by the fact that the governments of the world had a few years of advance warning; they didn't know the Reality Distortion Field was going to go kaput, but they did know that the number of Changed was doubling every year and that it was going to be impossible to keep this quiet forever, so extensive preparations were made for the inevitable Broken Masquerade.
- In Ben 10, there are aliens — especially Ben's — all over the news, but besides the established Men in Black, The Plumbers, and one task force, humanity seems to not care that there are other sentient lifeforms out there. The only scientist to ever go near Ben is the crazy one who wants the Omnitrix. As does every alien and their grandmothers — but no humans.
- There was exactly one instance of a group of humans after Ben's aliens (without the excuse of belonging to a cult of medieval cosplayers). They never appeared again, though.
- Averted in Gargoyles: The Goliath Chronicles. After the Masquerade is nuked, a Fantastic Racist group forms against them, and lawmakers try to figure out just where a Gargoyle stands in regard to the law (including a memorable case where Goliath is arrested and brought to trial and his lawyer asks him to try to get off on the grounds that he's not human).