Misused: All Myths Are True

Deadlock Clock: 1st Feb 2014 11:59:00 PM
Total posts: [273]
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1 ShanghaiSlave7th May 2012 09:50:32 AM from YKTTW , Relationship Status: is commanded to— WANK!
Noticed via an unintentional thread derail of mine.

Apparently, All Myths Are True has been misinterpreted as "real world myths are used in a work." instead of "If a Myth is mentioned In-Universe, it will be true", and thus, have examples that would fit better in Crossover Cosmology.

So, does it only need a cleanup or should it be split? if "real world myths are used in a work." isn't already covered by some trope, that is.
Is dast der Zerstorer? Odar die Schopfer?
Well, it looks to me like many (most?) of the misuses are Fantasy Kitchen Sink territory, interpreting the "all" part to mean any work where many different myths are living side by side. (The page image is a great example.)

I would think most "real world myths are used in a work" would fall under A Mythology Is True, though honestly I think a trope for "a real world myth is used in a story" is so common that it's nearly Sitting On Chairs territory, notable only for the specific myth in question (which falls under the specific trope for that, like Our Vampires Are Different or The Fair Folk).

I think it just needs a cleanup and a clearer first paragraph in the description. It could also use a cleanup to remove some of the big block of blue in the fourth paragraph, which further muddies the whole question of what the trope is actually about — Compare and contrast tropes should go in the last paragraph in a more approachable format.

I think it could gain a lot of clarity by explaining the reasons behind the trope — that is, The Law of Conservation of Detail demands that if we're taking time out of the main story to hear a legend or fairy tale, that story must have some strong bearing on the main storyline.

Actually, there's only a few cases I can think of where a legend or story is used and isn't at least somehow based on a truth that the characters will later discover. Occasionally a story within the story is used as a metaphor for what the characters are going through, and very rarely it's simply used to explain the psychology of an otherwise hard-to-understand character. (The only strong example of the latter that springs to mind is the animated Watership Down, where the myths about the Black Rabbit and everything are used to explain the rabbits' mentality, which is very different from a human's.)

Edit: Oh, hey, we'll also need to clean up All Theories Are True. It's designed as a snowclone of All Myths Are True, and it claims to be the same as All Myths but with science. Problem being, that's not what All Myths Are True means, so it's an improper snowcloning. I could see a place for a trope that any new fringe theory that the protagonists run into is absolutely correct no matter how much it overturns established science, but I think we already have a trope for that.

And anyway "some random weird fringe science theory is assumed to be true for the purpose of this story" isn't ALL theories being true, so the name is inaccurate in the first place. It sounds like it should mean the same as Sci-Fi Kitchen Sink, where all the old discarded, forgotten, or silly theories, from aether to z-rays, have their place (analogous to the wrong definition of All Myths Are True where every real world myth has a seed of truth to it).

edited 7th May '12 1:20:30 PM by Escher

Here's my suggestion for the front page description:

When the heroes of a story are told a myth, legend, or fairy tale, you can almost guarantee that the story is true (or at least the truth as filtered through generations of retelling and/or a primitive culture's viewpoint) and the heroes will have to deal with it at some point. This is used so often, in fact, that it's actually more notable when the heroes are told a story and it doesn't turn out to be some flavor of true.

This is largely a result of The Law of Conservation of Detail, which demands that taking time out from the main story to tell some other story must only be done when that side story is important to the main plot.* The purpose in labeling something important as a myth rather than just explaining it outright is to build excitement, so that when the legend is later shown to be true, it brings a sense of wonder or discovery. It can also serve to foreshadow future events, while giving the author an excuse for giving only partial or deceptive information.

Compare Prophecies Are Always Right, where it's a prediction that's virtually guaranteed to be right rather than a story from the past.

Note that this trope is about the characters within a story being told a myth, which turns out to be based on actual events within the story's universe. This is not about an author using real-world myths in a story (though the myth the heroes are being told may well be borrowed from a real-world source).

edited 7th May '12 11:25:23 AM by Escher

All Theories Are True isn't a snowclone, it's a Sci-Fi Counterpart. At their core, they're both about: if (myth||theory) is mentioned, then { (myth||theory) = true; } That is to say they're both a form of the The Law of Conservation of Detail that have particular consequences in each genre.

I think that the problem is that they're getting misused when Fantasy Kitchen Sink or Sci-Fi Kitchen Sink should be used instead: works that have every trope in the book for their respective settings.
It would be so nice if people would read trope descriptions before trying to add examples.

This page needs a cleanup but I don't see any need for a split. We have plenty of tropes for existing myths appearing in works.
6 ShanghaiSlave7th May 2012 05:59:32 PM from YKTTW , Relationship Status: is commanded to— WANK!
I see, so cleanup it is. do we need to put up a crowner for that? I think I'm asking a stupid question, but just making sure.
Is dast der Zerstorer? Odar die Schopfer?
if you know it's misuse, delete it or move it

edited 7th May '12 6:25:59 PM by abk0100

I don't think we're ready for a crowner yet. I think we can all agree this page needs a cleanup, but while we're at it we might as well try to find a way to prevent future misuse.
Crowners aren't really necessary unless there's disagreement about what to do. Cleanup is probably needed, but what kind of cleanup is still up to debate.

I'm pretty sure that a name like All Myths Are True is going to just attract Has Every Kind Of Mythology wicks anyway, so we might as well renam... —>Since January 1, 2011 this article has brought 6,333 people to the wiki from non-search engine links. surprised I guess not, then.

I think that most of the misuse will need to be moved to either Planet Eris, Fantasy Kitchen Sink, or Sci-Fi Kitchen Sink. But given that everything is in flux on those pages, we should probably chill, and make a list of misuse.
10 SeptimusHeap8th May 2012 08:35:02 AM from Laniakea , Relationship Status: Mu
Putting up a quick-and-dirty wick check here:
  1. TropeDistinctions.A-C: Correct
  2. Music.Abney Park: Zero-Context Example
  3. Additional Evil Overlord List Cellblock B: Unclear
  4. Adolf Hitler: Myths becoming true
  5. Webcomic.Adventurers: Correct
  6. VideoGame.Adventures Of Bouapha: Misuse, it's one myth only.
  7. WMG.Adventure Time: Unclear
  8. TabletopGame.Age Of Aquarius: Correct
  9. VisualNovel.Akai Ito: Zero-Context Example
  10. WesternAnimation.A Kind Of Magic: Unclear
  11. Aliens and Monsters: Unclear
  12. All Mythology Is True: Redirect
  13. All Myths Are True: Page
  14. Laconic.All Myths Are True: Page
  15. All Theories Are True: Misuse, the trope is about In-Universe stuff.
  16. All Trolls Are Different: Unclear
  17. Alternate Universe: Sounds like Real Life myths, so Misuse
  18. Literature.American Gods: Unclear
  19. Roleplay.American Paranormal Society: Misuse, trope is about In-Universe
  20. Music.Amon Amarth: Zero-Context Example
  21. A Mythology Is True: Unclear, leans towards misuse
  22. Anachronism Stew: Misuse, everything is Real Life myths.
  23. Series.Ancient Aliens: Unclear
  24. Ancient Astronauts: Unclear
  25. Ancient Grome: Misuse, this is Crossover Cosmology
  26. And Man Grew Proud: Correct
  27. Recap.Angel S 03 E 18 Double Or Nothing: Misuse, that sounds like Real Life
  28. Angels, Devils and Squid: Smells like Misuse
  29. BetterThanItSounds.Anime And Manga P-S: Misuse Real Life myths
  30. Anime Chinese Girl: Unclear
  31. VisualNovel.Aoi Shiro: Unclear
  32. Apocalypse Not: Unclear
  33. Manga.ARAGO: Seems Correct
  34. Arbitrary Skepticism: Correct
  35. PlayingWith.Arbitrary Skepticism: Correct, but the entry might not be.
  36. Archangel Michael: Unclear
  37. Arc Words: Correct
  38. As Incríveis Aventuras de Dog Mendonça e Pizzaboy!: Unclear
  39. Literature.A Song Of Ice And Fire Tropes A To I: Correct
  40. VideoGame.Assassins Creed I: Unclear, Sink Hole.
  41. Fridge.Assassins Creed II: Unclear
  42. Astrid Lindgren: Unclear
  43. Atlantica Online: Correct
  44. Literature.A Wizard In Rhyme: Correct
  45. Babylon 5 Tropes A To H: Correct
  46. Recap.Babylon Five S 03 E 13 A Late Delivery From Avalon: Correct
  47. LightNovel.Baccano: Correct
  48. DarthWiki.Back To The Drawing Board: Zero-Context Example
  49. Badass Santa: Unclear
  50. LightNovel.Bakemonogatari: Correct
  51. Balance Between Good and Evil: Unclear

Two things:
  1. I am not the best person for doing a wick check, and...
  2. There is some misuse as the OP said. If it's heavy enough, renaming this trope and disambiguating, redirecting or re-troping the current name seem to go.
Dragon Writer
It's easier to see the correct/misuse ratio if you sort your results by verdict.
12 peccantis8th May 2012 09:04:17 AM , Relationship Status: Pining for the fjords
the flies will find you
[up][up] The Astrid Lindgren entry is correct use.
before the darkness arrives
I agree that this trope needs to be renamed. It needs to be made clear that this trope is an effect of the Law of Conservation of Detail, and is along the lines of "any myth mentioned turns out to be true" rather than "every real-life myth is incorporated into the setting."

Maybe something like "The Myth Is Always Right"?
Now going by plain old "Silverfire".
14 Nohbody8th May 2012 09:42:15 AM from Somewhere in Dixie , Relationship Status: Mu
"In distress", my ass.
+1 for rename, and I like the suggestion in [up] this post.

(Also, there was one more misuse, on Monster Hunter International, but I fixed that, pointing it to Fantasy Kitchen Sink where the example actually applied.)

edited 8th May '12 9:43:12 AM by Nohbody

15 DragonQuestZ8th May 2012 10:16:39 AM from Somewhere in California
The Other Troper
"It would be so nice if people would read trope descriptions before trying to add examples."

Well the reality has shown that just doesn't happen, which is why names that look like something else are bad ideas.
I'm on the internet. My arguments are invalid.
I can definitely see this name being problematic. I support a name like "The Myth is Always Right".
I'm pretty sure that a name like All Myths Are True is going to just attract Has Every Kind Of Mythology wicks anyway, so we might as well renam... —>Since January 1, 2011 this article has brought 6, 333 people to the wiki from non-search engine links. I guess not, then.

How about a Trope Transplant? Merge Fantasy Kitchen Sink and All Myths Are True, keeping the other name as a redirect. Then create Myths Always Come True for the proper definition of All Myths Are True.

Drastic, I know, but it lets us keep all the inbound links while sorting out the misuse of the trope.

edited 8th May '12 12:24:21 PM by johnnye

[up]I don't think Myths Always Come True really works becasue it's not really about myths coming true (as if they were predictions) but rather that every myth has a seed of truth in it.

For example, if the heroes hear about the hero Tak who descended from the heavens in a chariot of fire, later they'll find a crashed UFO and learn that Tak was an extraterrestrial. It doesn't really "come true", it was true all along.
Is this a subtrope of Chekov's gun? If a story mentions a myth, it will later prove true and significant?
How abut Myths Are Always True, to go along with Prophecies Are Always Right?

It's a pretty subtle change, but I think it makes a difference.

[up]Yes. But before you ask, we're not calling it Chekhovs Myth tongue

edited 8th May '12 2:01:52 PM by johnnye

I hate snowclones, but when it comes to Chekhovs X, our policy on the subject suggests that we merge the page with Chekhov's Gun if possible, not pass it off under a non-Chekhov name.

If we did name this Chekhov's myth or something to that tune, at least we'd be spared the problems of the All/Always titles. Myths Are Always True? Is that an aggregate trope, or does it only concern each work? Should people list all aversions?
22 MarqFJA8th May 2012 02:16:39 PM from Saudi Arabia , Relationship Status: Shipping fictional characters
One Vision, One Purpose
From what I gather, the misuse is all about specific myths and Fairy Tales appearing in the work, like the Big Bad Wolf and the Queen from Snow White being featured in Smile Precure, rather than more generic cases of "Elves are real. 'Which mythology's elves', you say? Eh, let's just make 'em a random mish-mash of their various mythological versions — or make them original!". So rather than merging it with Fantasy Kitchen Sink, it would be a subtrope of it that deals with specific real-life myths' characters being made real in the work.
Where there is Distress, therein lies a Story. Where there is a Story, therein lies a Will. Where there is a Will, therein lies a Soul.
[up]We have several tropes about that kind of situation already. There's another TRS about merging them.

[up][up]I see what you mean. There are tropes like Vasquez Always Dies and The Password Is Always "Swordfish", where "always" effectively means "Seen It a Million Times". I hope you realise that that's not what I intended (I meant "For any given myth that is mentioned in-work, that myth is true") but I agree that it might be possible to misinterpret it that way.

As for the snowclone-iness of it, I think the usual rule of thumb is that it's acceptable to have a snowclone title if the two tropes are closely related.

Chekhov's Gun is a general principle of narrative, based on the Law of Conservation of Detail. You can't lump every trope relating to "something becomes more important than it seems when introduced" into it. I think the policy you're thinking of is more related to people suggesting "Chekhovs Object" tropes, along the lines of "Like Chekhov's Gun but it's not a gun, it's a horse!"

edited 9th May '12 4:47:13 AM by johnnye

I realize what you meant, but only because I've been reading this thread. If I otherwise saw Myths Are Always True (or All Myths Are True), I'd be less certain.
That's why I first suggested Myths Always Come True. I realise that wouldn't be an entirely accurate description of every example (some myths "turn out to have been true the whole time" rather than "coming true") but I think that's kind of splitting hairs.

In that case, the "Always=In Every Work" interpretation doesn't really make sense; it's pretty clearly "every myth you hear will come true".

edited 8th May '12 2:54:11 PM by johnnye

Page Action: All Myths Are True
14th Jun '12 5:40:04 AM
What would be the best way to fix the page?
At issue:
All Myths Are True is being misused as "real world myths are used in a work", while it really is about a myth turning out to be true after mentioned in-universe.

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