Literature Honor Harrington Discussion

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04:39:56 PM Nov 16th 2015
edited by danime91
Is there a milder version of Political Correctness Gone Mad? Weber has a tendency to try to change every little colloquialism and idiom to better reflect the setting, even when it's completely unnecessary, and one of the things he does in Honor Harrington is every single mention of "man" in an idiom will at some point be replaced with "woman". So "man-on-the-street" becomes "woman-on-the-street" and so on. While I suppose this is supposed to be trying to reflect the near-total gender equality of modern galactic society, I think, linguistically, it makes little sense. The original phrases were perfectly serviceable, and even today when gender equality issues and such are an actual thing nobody ever brings it up. And just say it out loud to yourself, "man-on-the-street" is just less awkward to say than "woman-on-the-street". I'm just as surprised that people aren't using roflmao or gtg and other text speak. His view of how language evolves over time seems to be a bit limited, but then, scifi writers always faced problems trying to portray a future we have no way of knowing.

Also on a minor note the fact that he tries to pass off Scientology as anything close to resembling a legitimate religion also seems to be a case of trying to be even-handed across the board.
10:26:31 AM Dec 12th 2015
edited by RoseAndHeather are aware that Weber changes the gender of common phrases to reflect the character thinking them, don't you? Michelle Henke is going to think 'woman-on-the-street' because she's a woman, Tom Theisman is going to think 'man-on-the-street' because he's a man. It seems perfectly reasonable to me.

Let me guess. You're a man who thinks "those damn feminists" are ruining everything? Because it really seems to me like you're taking a genuine attempt at portraying actual gender equality and getting pissy because it means actual gender equality and not "a token nod to women actually being able to do stuff, but not so much I feel threatened they can actually do everything a man can."

And by the way, it's "total gender equality" of galactic society (with the exception of a few long-isolated holdouts like Grayson, and even they have a pretty logical reason for trying to keep their women safe).
10:35:02 AM Dec 12th 2015
Masada not so much, and they're unambiguously bad guys when they appear
10:56:08 AM Dec 12th 2015
It's been a few years since I read HH, and I don't remember what Weber writes about Scientology, but doesn't it seem like a fairly likely extrapolation that, whatever its roots, Scientology could have become a mainstream religion a few hundred years into the future?
09:58:30 PM Feb 3rd 2016
edited by Nohbody
When Honor is discussing Manticore's religious variety in Flag in Exile (IIRC), she does mention "Reformed Scientologist", but that's just a one-time offhand reference that never goes anywhere.
10:11:08 AM Sep 16th 2015
So here's a trope-specific question:

Do you think the famous "Oops" qualifies as a Wham Line by that trope's strict definition?

On one hand, it really does change the context of the previous scene in a massive way, but on the other it's also just the end of a Wham Scene that starts when the SS ships suddenly blow up.
04:42:26 PM Nov 16th 2015
edited by danime91
I think that it doesn't qualify, because there is no shocking revelation being presented in the line itself, no sudden change is being heralded, and it is uttered after the Wham Scene it pertains to. If she said something like "I don't think so", then the scene happens, it would qualify as a Wham Line.
11:06:20 AM Dec 12th 2015
I totally disagree and thinks it absolutely counts as a Wham Line. I mean, yes, the SS ships start blowing up and it's awesome - I mean, completely unexpected, but that one word entirely changes the meaning of not only the scene but much of the previous two or three books where Shannon Foraker is concerned.
10:56:55 AM Sep 3rd 2014
edited by
A couple of thoughts regarding the book synopses currently being tweaked.

  • The Short Victorious War: Haven attempts to thrust further into Manticoran territory, but are only so successful. Meanwhile, threats to the existing Havenite regime are not solely external this time.

Vagueness is good, but the last sentence is so nebulous as to be useless. It needs to be at mentioned that there is change in leadership, just as it is alluded to under Ashes.

  • Mission of Honor:

We can't entirely ignore the sneak attack whose preparation, implementation, and aftermath takes up half the book and call it a synopsis. It must be mentioned in some capacity.
06:19:02 AM Sep 15th 2014
"Not solely external" = "internal" = "revolution". It's not a difficult train of thought to follow at all.

And yes, we can ignore that sneak attack when it's the single biggest spoiler/plot twist of the series to date - Haven and Manticore allying don't count because it's telegraphed basically from book six on that they will eventually. These synopses are not for people who have already read the books - they're to get people who haven't interested in the books. The "drawing Manticore into a second conflict" line is more than enough.

If, and only if, the general consensus on this discussion page - your opinion not included, since we know where you stand - is that Oyster Bay should be mentioned in the Mo H summary, then you may add it. Until then, leave it off, because I have been following these pages for years and you are literally the only person I have ever seen who thought that including it might possibly be a good idea.

And you should have a) taken it to discussion before you made the changes and b) put a note to see the discussion page in your initial edit reason.
06:58:50 AM Sep 15th 2014
edited by
You're being very hostile about a simple misunderstanding. I made my comment and last edit on the 3rd, a day before your last edit. I assumed the discussion page hit your watchlist like they're supposed to, and when I came back a dozen days later, you hadn't commented so I implemented my proposals. Nothing worth yelling or hostility. I did take it to discussion before editing, as timestamped, and as explained, I thought it would show up on watchlists so I didn't think to make note of it in the edit reason box.

Now, to your comment, I don't understand why we can't cut three steps to one and save the people who haven't read any of this some mental gymnastics. It's still opaque and gives the same information and lack thereof. As far as I can tell, it's only a matter of wording. As I mentioned, I was trying to adjust it to be of similar directness to the Ashes of Victory entry.

As for the sneak attack, you're using your knowledge to read in information that isn't there (...kind of like the Solarians assuming all defenses were destroyed?).

"...and a mysterious sneak attack does terrible damage to the Manticore system," could mean a whole lot of things, and nearly anything to someone not versed in the series. Just the loss of family could be considered terrible, without any of the infrastructure damage. Maybe 'to' could be 'in' to be even better. But like I say, I don't see how we can avoid mentioning the defining event of the book and call it a synopsis.

I poked around the four main pages on the search terms 'sneak' The one entry that brought up for the sneak attack had only names spoilered, and still gives way more information than I propose. (After writing most of this I went back and searched 'oyster' too, with similar results for all mentions except Wham Episode.)

Lastly, it seems pretty arrogant to declare that my opinion does not matter because I have stated it. Does that also mean yours does not matter? If anyone else comments, do their opinions cease to matter? At any rate, you are not the only one who has followed these pages for years, though my contribution dropped off after the example sectioning, since I didn't update my watchlist. That's now rectified. I don't think anyone's length of observation is a reason to disregard their opinion.
07:24:35 AM Sep 15th 2014
Calm down, folks.

Personally, I would just leave the spoiler material off.
11:32:15 AM Sep 15th 2014
I'm sorry for snapping at you. I've been down with a nasty bug for the last couple of days and it's made me considerably more irritable than I might have otherwise been.

And for the record, when I said "your opinion doesn't count" I meant that you've already used up your vote on the issue, as have I. Hence, the rest of the troper base gets to decide the issue now. We've both cast our votes - one for, one against - so they get to break the deadlock.

And there's a huge difference between spoilers existing on the trope example pages - as I will cheerfully concede they do, being responsible for a good chunk of them myself - and existing above the "Spoiler Warning" line. Major spoilers don't belong above the examples on work pages unless they fall into the category of You Should Know This Already, which - given that the novel we're debating was published in 2010 and doesn't have a wide readership outside its genre - is definitely not the case for the Honorverse.

I'm not reading anything that isn't there. "A devastating sneak attack on the Manticoran home system" is about as spoilerriffic as you can get without also saying "and here's who did it". It's bad enough that Haven's second revolution is revealed in the descriptions, and that was a foregone conclusion if ever there was one!

02:05:56 AM Sep 25th 2014
edited by
The dissonance inherent in the system makes it hard for me to figure out how to respond. There is both a line between a synopsis and a spoiler, and no line at all between the two, since by definition a synopsis is a summary of the plot and a spoiler is any mention of the plot. Calling an addition to the synopsis a major spoiler is both always true, and subject to the reality that we actually do allow spoilers in the service of the objective of summarization. Thus, the question is not whether this is a spoiler, because all of a synopsis is a spoiler, but whether it is a reasonable spoiler to make.

In my judgement it is reasonable, and in comparison to the other synopses it most definitely is. The event, along with preparation and aftermath, takes up most of the book- not mentioning it in any way is inconsistent with the the other synopses and the general fact that a synopses should be laying out what's going on. Your knowledge of the series is coloring your judgement (as mine is), and it's unfortunate you don't see it. You consider the second revolution a forgone conclusion, but there's no way an outside observer knows that. An outside observer also has no idea what devastating means in this context, because there is no indication- no mention of space stations or planetary strikes, of scientists, families, or treecats. They have no idea that this is a series where fatalities from single engagements run into the millions. It only that indicates that someone or something important was lost or heavily damaged (heck, Field of Dishonor could read "...Pavel Young plans and executes a devastating sneak attack against Honor...", and a single person was lost there). As I said, changing it to "A devastating sneak attack IN the Manticoran home system" would make obscure the scale further.

Lastly, concerning The Short Victorious War, are we in agreement that the edit is fine? It is still far less explicit than Ashes of Victor and War of Honor, only making it clear that there are changes, not mere threats, in Haven. Either those two synopses need major overhauls, or it's okay.

03:21:55 PM Oct 4th 2014
edited by
And in my judgment it's not a reasonable spoiler. It doesn't need to be there. "...drawing Manticore into a second conflict and tipping the balance of power" is more than adequate.

We're at a standstill on this. I'm not going to budge. I'm considering taking it to Ask The Tropers, but I would point out that Septimus Heap has also agreed that the spoiler should not be included. Your ad hominem attacks on my judgment aside — which aren't predisposing me to agree with you, by the way — I'm not sure why you're so bound and determined to spoil the biggest twist in the history of the 'verse on the TV Tropes page.

TSVW, as it stands now, is fine.
02:14:13 PM Feb 2nd 2014
So...what would you say should our policy be regarding eARC stuff? I'm pretty sure quite a few people here have the Cauldron of Ghosts eARC, but should we actually start adding examples from it? I mean, it's not exactly released yet, is it?
09:36:01 PM Jun 4th 2014
Not really sure if there's an easy answer for that. It's one thing to get spoiled because you didn't start reading the book when it came out, it's another to get spoiled because you didn't pay for the rough draft before the book even got published. And yet... it's out in the wild just the same. If only there was a subpage for unpublished spoilers (based on Word of God, leaked scripts, etc.) similar to how there's a YMMV tab and Trivia tab where such things could be listed and then moved as they become published canon.
08:30:27 PM Dec 3rd 2013
What do you tropers think of splitting the individual book descriptions off to their own page? The main page is getting a bit unwieldy, and I think could do with reducing the text to summaries of the separate sub-series, but detail the synopses of the individual books on a separate page.
07:34:25 AM Dec 4th 2013
I don't think it's really a problem yet, especially with the "close all folders" option.

Also, no matter how you slice it, unless Weber, Flint, and the rest of the regular authors all kick the bucket at the same time, it's always going to be messy. Weber takes the "opera" part of Space Opera quite literally, as in a grand affair that takes forever to get through. :P
04:04:06 PM Dec 4th 2013
I certainly see your point, but frankly I'd rather deal with the problem now than three or four years down the line when we've got another half dozen books and a couple of anthologies to make things messier. Frankly, it's a matter of it being easier to split the books off to their own page while they're not creating a problem than splitting it off when they already are a problem. If I took care of it now, I could have it done in less than an hour. Once Zahn's sub-series kicks in, though, and we have even more canon material floating around... *shudder*

An ounce of prevention, and all that. The folders help, but I still think things would be more streamlined if we kept the main page to sub-series descriptions only and had the individual books summarized on a separate page.
06:42:02 AM Dec 5th 2013
edited by
Something that came to mind at work last night: Why have synopses in the first place? I mean, yeah, it's nice to have a rough idea of what happens when without having to wade through the trope lists (even before the split), but at the risk of invoking Troper's Law, after some thinking it seems to me that the more detail about the individual works in the series, the more the page (well, pages, now) are heading towards being more like The Other Wiki.

Setting that aside, though, I am concerned that the more the HH page is broken down, the less people will actually read it, not wanting to be bothered with chasing down every subpage (which is why I lifted the trope list header idea from The Order of the Stick, to add another option to go with the indexing footer).


And on a tangentially related note, it looks like the character sheet is also going to have to be split up. By the current folder splits, or something else? Not sure what the text character count breakdowns will look like using the folder model.

(Added this as an edit to not bury the synopsis discussion beneath another thread.)
12:45:47 PM Dec 5th 2013
edited by
...okay, that's a very valid point and one I didn't think of. I keep forgetting that not everyone is as obsessed with that series as I am (and therefore not as likely to follow a link to a different page).

I think we do need (brief - maybe a rule that it should be kept to three or four lines max per book, and less if at all possible?) synopses of the books, though, because especially later on, so many books run concurrently. Those of us who know the series can throw around phrases like "In A Rising Thunder this happens..." and know exactly when/where in the series we are, but a novice is going to be going, "Wait, what happens in A Rising Thunder exactly, and where in the timeline is it?" If we have synopses of the novels on hand, they can look at the main page and go, "Oh, that's when/where this stuff happens!" and the example will have more context. It's not like we're even putting up full back-cover blurbs - just a very rough, one- to three-sentence description.

And now that I think about it, splitting the novel synopses off to their own page would encourage people to make the descriptions longer. Okay, yeah, that is a bad plan. Consider me talked out of it.


As for the characters - perhaps Manticore/Grayson on one page (perhaps with treecats), Haven on another, and then everybody else? Giving each individual star nation/faction its own page has its appeal, but that is a lot of subpages.

Or we could do Manticore/Grayson/Haven (so really The Big Three), Manticoran allies (Talbott/Torch/Treecats/Historical/Andermani if they ever get added), and then the other side (Mesa/Solarian/Alignment) faction.

The other possibility is The Grand Alliance (Manticore/Grayson/Haven/Talbott/Treecats) on one page and everyone else on the other, but that's gonna be a pretty uneven split loaded in favor of the Alliance.
05:36:25 PM Dec 5th 2013
Looking at the folders in the current character sheet, how about Manticoran Alliance (the original allies of Manticore, Grayson, Erewhon, Andermani Empire, and the other minor polities that don't get much air time except for getting their asses kicked up between their ears during Haven's big offensives prior to their collective Heel–Face Turn), Haven, Solarian League, and Others for all the rest?

This would be a lot easier without Haven dropping the "People" part of their name. Without that it could just be "good guys" and "bad guys". :P
08:13:34 PM Dec 5th 2013
Which is the same reason I flatly refuse to allow Haven to be lumped in with 'the bad guys'. I'm far too desperately in love with Tom, Eloise, Warner, Javier, Shannon, Lester, Denis, and company to stand for that.

  • grumble*stupid heel face turn making character splitting hard*grumble* *grumble*stupid havenites making me fall in love with them*grumble*

If we do go with Manticoran Alliance/Haven/etc. split, though, does the Solarian League really have enough characters to justify its own separate page? Or should we just split it with Manticoran Alliance/Haven/Other? I mean, the Grand Alliance is basically the Manticoran Alliance plus Haven...

...but then there's Talbott.

...well crap. This is hard.
10:47:30 PM Dec 5th 2013
The idea for Solies as their own page was more about their status in the story, not their character population. I can see where a whole page for just the Sollies would be a bit undersized compared to the others.

How about this:
  • Manticore and acquisitions (including Talbot, since they're eventually officially incorporated into SKM)
  • Aligned with Manticore (Torch, non-Manticore members of the original Manticoran Alliance)
  • Haven
  • Solarian League and Mesa (given how they're so intertwined due to Mesan scheming)

I still haven't done a size check on how things would break down mind you (partly because I have no idea of what could be used to count up the text characters), so I could have a pretty lousy balance going with the above.
11:20:34 PM Dec 5th 2013
Yeah, I see where you were coming from Solly-wise. (Alas, I am interested in the Solarians only insofar as how they die at the hands of my Alliance, so I don't really pay enough attention to fill that sort of page out. If a troper comes along who actually is interested in the Sollies, we might want to think about giving them their own page, though....)

Hmmm, yes, I like that a lot. As for character counts, perhaps try it first in a Sandbox before we do the real thing? We can always re-juggle - lump Talbott in with Torch & co, for instance - if we need to shift things. Even despite my efforts on Haven's behalf, Manticore's probably always going to have the longest page, but we really can't make a final decision until we know how the character counts break down, I think.

So that would be Manticore/Talbott, Grayson/Torch/Erewhon/Alizon/Zanzibar/Andermani, Haven, and Sollies/Mesa? Yes. Yes, I think that works out really well.
06:54:16 AM Dec 6th 2013
edited by
Given how long this discussion is getting and how it's gone from the synopsis issue to character page splitting, I started a new conversation here about the split.
09:28:14 PM Sep 15th 2013
edited by
I was thinking about expanding the Gambit Pileup entry (for Crown of Slaves) in the form of this footnote:

"Let's try a summary (warning, spoilers!):[[note]]

The lieutenant governor of a solarian verge sector conspires to kill an annoying political activist (while pinning the blame on Manpower) in return for a political alliance with his successor. The officer he employs as his hatchetman is actually setting him up for failure in a bid to gain the favor of the sector governor, who is running his own long-term gambit to secede from the League. The people who actually carried out the hit are exiled Masadans normally in the employ of Manpower, who also have their own personal revenge plot going. The activist's funeral on the planet Erewhon attracts a Manticoran princess looking to start a career in intelligence, along with Anton Zilwicki who gets shanghaied into being her mentor. For convoluted reasons, the princess and Zilwicki's adopted daughter are disguised as each other. The funeral (and assorted intrigue) also attracts Havenite junior superspy Victor Cachat, who plans to draw Erewhon away from the Manticoran alliance. Meanwhile, an Erewhonese politician is looking for an opportunity to work his way back into the top level of power on his homeworld. Oh, and the terrorists-slash-freedom-fighters of the Audobon Ballroom are looking for a way to strike against the Manpower-owned slave colony of Congo, effectively next door (astronomically speaking) to Erewhon.

And these are just the major players. Every single character in this book has a personal agenda and/or gets roped into one of the bigger plots somehow. [[/note]]"

I ended up discarding the whole entry because it was turning into a wall-of-text...but really, Crown of Slaves is SUCH an epic case of Gambit Pileup that I also feel it deserves a bit of expansion just to point out the sheer insanity of it.

Anybody got any saner ideas to flesh it out? :P
09:47:22 PM Sep 15th 2013
Let's be real here, Crown of Slaves is, like, Gambit Pileup: The Novel. That note actually looks pretty good to me, although of course the actual plot is more complex than that! :D Some things deserve a wall of text, and I'd have to say this is one of them.
12:04:11 AM Sep 16th 2013
I don't know. I mean, yes detail is nice, but does the entry really need to go on for a long paragraph? Remember, you don't need to get into the fine details of everything for a trope entry. This is TV Tropes, not TV Essays. :P

As for a more concise version, I'd have to think about it a bit. Right now I have to go wrangle Housepets! a bit.
10:21:04 AM Aug 20th 2013
With the main page at 399486 characters long as of this post, it's time to split the tropes list into smaller segments, so as to not break things for the server (things get screwy at 400k, and outright break at 500k).

Given there's still more books to go, my first inclination (out of laziness :P ) for a 50/50 split isn't really practical. However, Nocturna recommends 3-4 subpages in this post, which sounds like a better idea.

So, how should we split it?
  • Three subpages results in abcdefgh ijklmnop qrstuvwxyz
  • Four subpages gives us abcdef ghijkl mnopqr stuvwxyz

(Yes, misuse of bullet points as paragraphs, so sue me. :P )
07:59:57 AM Aug 21st 2013
Regarding the three-subpage solution: It looks like a-h is about 50% of the page, with the other two being roughly 25% each. I'd need to do some word-counting to be sure, but it looks like the four-subpage version would yield a slightly more even distribution.
05:28:57 PM Sep 9th 2013
I'll throw my vote behind the four-subpage idea. This trope list is only going to get longer, so anything that guarantees more even distribution is a great idea by me.

I was also wondering if maybe splitting off all the book descriptions/summaries to their own page might not be a bad plan?
08:55:53 AM Sep 10th 2013
Regarding the descriptions/summaries, perhaps the main Literature.Honor Harrington should be that and the trope subpage indexes, with A-H being on its own page instead of on Literature/?

Without looking I think having the first trope cluster as its own page instead of part of the main work trope indexing page is how Babylon 5 does things, ditto The Order of the Stick.
09:07:26 PM Sep 11th 2013
edited by
The only worry I have is that there are a lot of books in this series, and there are only going to be more, so splitting off the book descriptions would allow those who are interested to go find it, while making people scroll through a lot less to get to the actual trope subpages. The Literature page wouldn't exactly be tiny even just with a description of the series premise as a whole, or if you think we should have a little more detail, general descriptions of the various subseries.

Otherwise, I'm behind this plan 100%.
06:11:59 AM Nov 18th 2013
Ok, since no one else stepped up and the page was over 460k characters, I did the split using the 4-way. Tropes transferred to the new pages and indexing is done, taking care of custom titling issues now.
08:54:40 PM Jul 3rd 2013
I'm not sure whether this fits under Artistic License - Economics or something else but...

Haven. It's purposely built as a failed economy, but it's built 'too well'. The page currently notes that Haven is an in universe example, but Weber is arguably a much bigger one in real life: If only 10% of the population is working, then how's all the food, medication, housing, clothing and other basic necessities that the population requires still getting produced? What about all the services and luxuries that the non-working 90% are spending their generous BLS on?

If all that stuff isn't actually getting produced, then the additional expenditures of invading individual neighboring planets to raid their economies would not actually fix that problem unless they're specifically invading world with a proportionally ridiculous focus on producing said necessities, services and luxuries (and they're not. They're raiding the newly conquered worlds' 'economies', not their food stores.)

If all that stuff is still getting produced, then 90% of the population not working would not, in fact, be a drain on the economy, because apparently those 90% wouldn't be able to get jobs any way, since everything the society requires to function is still getting produced with only 10% of the population working and at least some of those 10% working in the military and bureaucracy (and thus producing nothing).

Also, with only 10% of the population working at all, Haven has still been able, since the start of this 'solution', to maintain military forces capable of steam rolling over it's neighbors (despite, you know, the fact that on those planets more than the usual percentage of people would get involved in an armed resistance), enforcing some kind of policy that completely drains said planet of it's economic capabilities and policing it after its capture... And it can still stand up to the Manties and the Andies throughout.

Haven's economy is a case of Artistic License not just in-universe, mainly because Weber treats economies as if they're only about money in the abstract, rather than what that money represents. Haven's 'economy' might be able to sustain itself on the money it gets from other planets, but unless the Havenites have evolved the ability to eat, drink, wear, drive, fight disease with and live in currency, that doesn't really solve the question of how 90% of the population is able to live comfortable enough lives that they wouldn't want to work or get educated at all, rather than realistically being in a perpetual state of starvation and disease.

(And that's without even getting into the utterly fucked up, and mostly United States-based, idea any significant part of any population would be content to sit on its ass and do nothing if they receive welfare and that people 'require' welfare benefits to be less than minimum wage in order to be motivated to work. As someone who's been on a rather generous disability stipend and who wasn't actually required by law to go find a job, but did, I kinda find that entire notion really insulting.)

So yeah, I notice that this has led to minor edit wars in the past. Is there any objection now if I add that Haven's situation is Artistic License - Economics out-of-universe as well, because Weber treats economies as being only about money in an abstract sense?
04:36:00 AM Jul 4th 2013
I don't know, can you condense that to something less than an essay for complaining about Weber's politics, while keeping in mind that he's hardly the only fiction book author to adjust the setting to tell the story he wants to tell?
07:48:17 AM Jul 4th 2013
edited by
Only the bit in parentheses towards the end was me complaining about Weber's politics.

The rest is just me pointing out the two different ways in which Haven's economy doesn't make sense beyond the way Weber intentionally made it make no sense.

Essentially Weber picked too low a percentage to be realistic when he picked how much of Haven's population was in the workforce, because he was looking at Economies as being only about money, not about the goods that that money goes towards purchasing. It would be Scifi Writers Have No Sense Of Scale, but that doesn't have a subpage for demographics.

Here's what it's like shortened down then:

With only 10% of the population actually working and enough of those in the bureaucracy and military to make conquering planets and administering them feasible, but no mention of actual shortages of goods and no mention of the BLS being too low to afford any of those goods, Haven's real issue would be that it is a post-scarcity economy whose government treats its money as if it isn't.
03:55:18 PM Jul 4th 2013
Is it actually post-scarcity, though? While some things can be done via nanomachines, what little has been covered of production in the Honorverse still requires people, and while resources are far more available than in RL it's not "might as well be free".

As for the workforce percentage, I'm pretty sure it wasn't said to start out at that point, and for a polity whose economic power (prior to becoming the People's Republic of Haven) rivaled that of the Solarian League (which has, what, 80% of all of humanity's total population? I forget the number, but it's ridiculously huge) there's plenty of leeway to slip to where the PRH was shown as being at as of the first few books of the series, especially after essentially sucker-punching smaller polities in the region who didn't have the economic performance or desire to build up large navies that could have given the PRN a serious bellyache, and basically looting the economies of those conquered star nations.
10:10:38 AM Apr 16th 2013
Removed Word Cruft, fixed Example Indentation, made spoiler adjustments, Bold Inflation deflated, and assorted other stuff:

(and note to self, left off at N-Word Privileges)
10:57:44 AM Apr 14th 2013
Should we list the Anthology's on the page? And what about the forthcoming companion books?
06:40:47 PM Apr 14th 2013
Hmm, a mention of the anthologies and 'background' books wouldn't be a bad idea, yeah.
02:44:18 PM Apr 20th 2013
Have added them...may be a bit long and overly detailed, though.
04:34:31 PM Apr 2nd 2013
Tracer added this example to Meaningful Name:

  • "Mesan" can be pronounced like "Mason." Both the Mesans in-universe, and the Freemasons in Real Life, stand accused of secretly manipulating whole governments behind the scenes.

I'm...not sure if that works. At the very least, it's kinda...reaching, unless there's some Word of God stating that this was intentional.

So...leave it in or cut it?
04:42:29 PM Apr 2nd 2013
Well, historical institutions and nations are pretty heavily used with the serial numbers rubbed off. The analogs of Britain and France are pretty plain. It is a reasonable guess that the Mesan/Mason thing is not too far fetched.
06:27:14 AM Feb 27th 2013
In Shout Outs, I'm pretty sure Director Vincent Stone is a reference to Oliver Stone. King Clinton III and Chancellor Walter Ford are also references to previous presidents of the USA.
05:56:42 AM Jan 4th 2013
edited by AFP
I'm thinking the prequel stories about Stephanie Harrington would be best served on a separate page, given the lack of significant overlap in the storylines, and the fact that the main Honor Harrington series and the Stephanie Harrington books appear to be marketed to different audiences to boot. This way, tropes specific to the prequels can get their own page without expecting someone reading a Young Adult novel to have worked their way through 15 volumes of the main story first.
09:26:27 PM Jan 16th 2013
Went ahead and did it (lack of objection is the same as consensus, right?).
08:22:51 AM Oct 14th 2013
And now, I'm wondering if I should rename the page to "Star Kingdom" as that seems to be the name the books are being marketed under, or make it a redirect, or leave it alone or what.
11:03:37 AM Oct 14th 2013
Honestly, I think 'Stephanie Harrington' is just fine. 'Star Kingdom' may be the official marketing title, but not only does 'Stephanie Harrington' parallel the marketing title of the main series, but how many people (aside from the true hardcores) either know or care that they're not called the Stephanie Harrington books?
09:25:10 PM Jun 4th 2014
So, once the "Manticore Ascendant" books start rolling out this fall (as it looks like Travis Tea's series will be called), we can just create another Literature entry for it and direct folks to add tropes there. Not really much reason to create it yet, unless we want to start troping the unholy hell out of the one short story in that particular setting.
11:46:15 AM Oct 28th 2012
Would the Medusans count as Starfish Aliens? They effectively combine traits of mammals (metabolism and reproduction), arthropod (locomotion and general 'mantis-like' appearance) and...well, starfish (radial symmetry, although tri- rather than pentamerous)...
09:00:23 PM Jan 4th 2013
edited by AFP
I think it fits, actually. They're tri-radial, as I recall, and I don't think they can communicate directly with humans without some sort of Universal Translator, but it's been years since I read On Baselisk Station.
03:26:00 AM Aug 12th 2012
Those 'Southern Drawl' accents of various Manticoran nobles like Oversteegen (and rather less heroic examples) keep vanishing when the character in question is seriously upset about something.

Does this count as Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping?
09:03:23 AM Aug 12th 2012
No, that's an acting trope, not a character/story trope.

I think Accent Relapse is the closest to what you're going for, but isn't exact.
09:21:14 AM Jun 17th 2012
The inability to cross the theta band was held as sacrosanct for centuries before the streak drive did it in. I'd think shattering a centuries-old conception would be sufficient to qualify for Beyond the Impossible?
09:34:34 AM Jun 17th 2012
Except that the Beyond the Impossible page specifically says that doing something through Applied Phlebotinum is not Beyondthe Impossible so...well, there it is.

Right now it just looks like the trope is a mess; I really can't think of what it is meant to cover.
11:18:56 AM Jun 8th 2012
I was going to alter the Fantasy Counterpart Culture entry, but I thought the issue merited discussion.

Obviously, the Manticore System is based on Great Britain. Manticore itself is England, but the parallels for Sphinx and Gryphon are harder to pin down. The current parallels are Scotland and Ireland, respectively, but I see them as Wales and Scotland. Gryphon is more distant, not to mention has its own highlanders, while Sphinx is close to Manticore, but more rugged.

Is there any strong objection to my proposed changes?
01:21:54 PM Jun 8th 2012
The problem is not any fault with your particular logic, but that it's your (Or anybody's) logic. These aren't supposed to be our theories or interpretation, it's supposed to be what the author's deliberately going for. If there hasn't been some sort of explicit comparison (The use of German as a language for the Anderman Empire, or Benjamin explicitly comparing Grayson to Japan, for example) I'm uncomfortable putting any sort of "He's probably going for..." note in there. Gryphon citizens have been called 'highlanders,' but anything for Ireland or Wales is speculatory.

I'd rather take out almost the entire note and just leave "The Stark Kingdom of Manticore is Britain, with Manticore itself as England" because those comparisons have been crystal clear and are not up for debate.
04:00:15 PM Apr 18th 2012
I'm thinking of removing all of the But Not Too Black entries from the Characters page. It seems to me that the trope is about racist implications rather than simply having mixed ancestry, and that the latter is what's present in-story. (With the obvious exception of Oversteegen and Du Havel's historical discussion, which is...a historical discussion.) Any thoughts?
05:41:09 PM Apr 18th 2012
I try to avoid character pages when I can, but you're corect that it's a trope about racial portrayal and casting, not just people of mixed ancestry. if all the tropes are "Person has a lot of different genes" then I don't see how it fits.
11:14:54 AM Jan 2nd 2012
Nohbody, please correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the YMMV tab the part of the more "discussion-friendly" side of this wiki? I was under the impression that it is, and so find your relentless anti-natter crusade somewhat excessive in this case.
06:42:21 AM Jan 3rd 2012
No, it's not. There's no discussion on trope-listing pages. Discussions are for the Discussion pages and possibly the Headscratchers pages.
02:43:02 AM Jan 5th 2012
edited by Khathi
Why it's on a blue background then, just like Headcratchers and WMG tabs? It's rather misleading IMO, and we ought to do something about this inconsistency.
02:55:24 PM Oct 30th 2011
The planet Beowulf (where Honor's mother comes from) seems to me to be a shout-out to the books "The Legacy of Heorot" and "Beowulf's Children" by Larry Niven.

In the books clonists build the first extraplanetary colony on the planet Avalon after a hundred year flight in cryostasis(Beowolf is the first colony in the Honorverse, the first settlers also came in sleeperships). They find a native predetor and call it Grendel, later they discover the species is intelligent (Beowulf has an intelligent native species called Gremlins). One of the leaders of the colony is married to two women (Beowulf has very open standarts). One of humans born on Avalon went crazy and tried to take over, which the other colonists atributed to him grown in a tube and thus lacking family bonds (people from Beowolf prefer natural births).

Am I only seeing random simularities, or is this a shout-out?
05:03:27 PM Oct 30th 2011
Wiki policy is that for something to be a Shout-Out the idea is that it has to be explicit, so you know it's a Shout-Out; rule of thumb is that if you're not sure then it probably isn't. Has there been any sort of Word of God comment on this?

Personally, I see Beowful as inspired by Beta from the Vorkosigan Saga (Sexually liberal, headof the life sciences, origin of the Uterine Replicator, etc.)
11:44:54 PM Oct 30th 2011
I am sure it is a Shout Out, the problem is that I sometimes see simularities other do not see so is seems to me better to check with others what they think.

And Beta has no native intellient species, also the name of the planet is a direct reference to the Niven books.
07:11:16 AM Oct 31st 2011
Well, I never said it was a perfect similarity....

I haven't read "Beowulf's Children," so I can't really comment on whether or not the two planets are similar enough to count as a Shout-Out.
11:00:31 PM Sep 19th 2011
The Unwitting Pawn entry describes Manticore and Haven as playing into the bad guys' hands as of the end of Mission of Honor. Except that I'm pretty sure that their alliance was never part of the plan at all. Mesa wanted the two biggest players after the Solarian League to be distracted fighting each other while they made their move. A united Haven Sector does not seem to have been part of their plans.
11:27:47 PM Sep 19th 2011
What Unwitting Pawn entry? *whistles innocently*
07:17:45 AM Sep 20th 2011
I've re-added with a significant trim to avoid this particular issue, since whether they're being pawns now they certainly have been in the past.
08:47:50 PM Aug 7th 2011
edited by Khathi
Regarding this: I don't see the irony here, or how it applies to the Author Appeal trope (In fact, what's already here doesn't fit, either. It takes more than just being a key feature of the series to be an Author Appeal)

Well, the irony might be a Your Mileage May Vary thing, but the appeal in my opinion ir hard to doubt. The political intrigue gradually takes larger and larger place in the plot as the series progresses, until it could be called less a Military Science-Fiction and more a political triller. If that's not an Author Appeal, given Weber's personal interest in history and politics, then what is?
08:58:40 PM Aug 7th 2011
edited by JBK405
"A kind of Fanservice where the presence of a particular gimmick or kink is so widespread and prominent that it is interpreted as a specific reason the creator actually produced the work" or "Writers write stuff they like into their stories, no matter how esoteric or kinky it is."

The politics of the Honorverse isn't a gimmick or kink, and isn't the least bit esoteric, but is part of the basic framework of the story even back in the beginning On Basilisk Station. I'm not saying it isn't obviously an appeal that David Weber has, but that it doesn't count as an Author Appeal. The trope refers to when an author keeps inserting the same thing (Whether it be a character type, common reference, source of humor, etc.) into their various works just because they like that thing and not because it's necessary to the story; the politics here is the story.

It'd be like listing "space" as George Lucas's author appeal or "spies" for Ian Fleming. Those aren't personal preferences that they force into their works (Well, except maybe the aliens in Crystal Skull), but are just the basic parts of their stories.

The politics certainly has expanded in the past few novels to where it's almost taken over, but that's just a shift in story focus, not him trying to add somethig new or extra to a plot that doesn't need it (I'm not saying I wouldn't prefer a return to his earlier style, I've grown weary of reading the Battle of Manticore from a different perspective in every frelling new book, just that this is still a part of the same story).
10:49:09 PM Aug 10th 2011
Okay, point taken.
01:11:16 PM Oct 11th 2011
JBK, the point may be taken but that doesn't make it accurate.

'Space' is not George Lucas' author appeal, that's correct, but the romantic subplots, sword fights and samurai-esque Jedi philosophy certainly ARE author appeal, which is why the prequels feature these far more than the original trilogy. Likewise, spies aren't Ian Fleming's author appeal, but the way he lovingly describes Bond having lunch and dinner certainly are.

And Author Appeal does not have anything to do with whether or not something matters to the story, it just means the author keeps including something because he or she likes it. Which is exactly what Weber does when it comes to politics. It doesn't have to be disruptive or obsessive or negative in any other way.

You seem to desire that people not mention this rather obvious case of Author Appeal, just because you have negative associations with the trope. This, however, is your problem.
01:52:05 PM Jun 1st 2011
Okay, who left:
  • Strawman Has a Point: In Service Of The Sword, Captain Oversteegan, a swaggering aristocrat if there ever was one, orders Midshipman Hearns to make contact with a colony of Space Amish to ask them a few questions about some disappeared shipping. Hearns takes offense, thinking that he is sending her just because she is also from a planet considered by many to be a bunch of Space Amish* . When she takes her complaint to Captain Oversteegan's second-in-command, the Commander points out that her background does make her the most qualified officer on board to perform that mission.

On the page? I don't think that's what Strawman Has a Point means, even if it's invoked.

Also, are all those Straw entries accurate?
10:18:49 AM Oct 18th 2010
I changed Ramidel's Face–Heel Turn entry, since I feel that even though the High Ridge Government is certainly villainous, "Manticore as a whole" remained a protagonist faction. I've left the entry in place, but I'm not sure it really fits. Is there another trope that would fit better?
02:40:34 PM Oct 18th 2010
FHT doesn't really apply. High Ridge and his fellow goons have been depicted as opportunistic, self-centered shitheads of the lowest order pretty much from the beginning. There wasn't a "face" to turn from. I'm cutting that entry.

As for what would fit better, not sure off the top of my head. What is there in the way of "corrupt government" tropes? Serious question.
10:29:18 AM Oct 19th 2010
I've found three that apply to various degree: Obstructive Bureaucrat, President Corrupt, and Sleazy Politician.
02:16:25 PM Oct 19th 2010
All of those look like they'd cover the HR government as a whole (and PC for HR himself).
02:33:25 AM Oct 11th 2010
edited by pidge
Catch Phrase - I pretty sure "let's be about it" occurs much less frequently that "I see", which nearly all of the characters are afflicted with.

[editted to provide my handle]
09:17:54 AM Oct 11th 2010
I don't think that really counts as a "catchphrase" as such.
02:54:08 PM Oct 18th 2010
If "I see" counts as a catchphrase, so does "the" and "Hello". It's just something you say to acknowledge a thought. Catch Phrase isn't about volume, it's about significance.
08:19:33 AM Sep 17th 2010
edited by Michael
So, seemingly there is a game in development. Does anyone know anything more than the smattering of info present on ?
08:26:46 AM Sep 17th 2010
There really isn't anything else available on it, AFAIK. Until there's actually something along the lines of "we're releasing on [X] date", it's probably best to treat it as vaporware, as far as TV Tropes pages go.
03:02:35 PM Jul 21st 2010
After reading Mission of Honor I want to add the following text but I'm not sure which trope to file it under, maybe Fridge Brilliance? Numerous times throughout the series ships go to Maximum Military Power, where it is noted there is a 3% chance of their Inertial Dampening spontaneously failing. Yet this never happens, nor is it ever mentioned as having happened off-screen. The latest book explains this by noting that the RMN has decided its safety margins were more cautious than they had to be.
09:45:22 PM Jul 21st 2010
I can't think of any tropes where that fits, but I am sure that it's not Fridge Brilliance.
03:56:52 PM Sep 23rd 2010
Well, it's basic engineering, which many sci-fi authors seem to miss. No one ever designs something potentially hazardous to be operated right up to its failure point; you always set a margin of safety some "distance" from the point of no return for the casualty you are concerned about. Even the most extreme, emergency use of the system will still have some margin of error built into it.

As an aside, compensator failure has happened at least twice in the books that I'm aware of... First, an intentional sabotage of a compensator was used as an assassination tool against a Pre-Elizabeth II Manticoran monarch—I think it was in one of the short story compilations. Second, more recently in Torch of Freedom, one of Admiral Roszak's ships suffer compensator failure as a result of battle damage while defending Torch.
04:20:05 PM Sep 23rd 2010
edited by Nohbody
Weber's short story "What Price Dreams?" in the anthology Worlds of Honor is where the sabotaged compensators are mentioned, for the record, killing Roger II's wife, Queen Consort Solange.
01:06:16 PM Sep 25th 2010
Anti Ted: Ships have their compensators fail due to battle damage now and then, but the way it's worded in the books seems to imply that just going to maximum power, 1 in 25 ships will spontaneously suffer compensator failure. It just seemed odd to me that captains and admirals kept worrying about it as a real possibility when it never happened any of the dozens of times over the course of the series that someone went to maximum power. So it was nice in Mission of Honor for them to realize "huh, apparently the setting we used as max (because everyone knew that even that much is dangerous) is actually well within the *real* safety margins."
11:17:06 PM Jun 12th 2014
If nothing else, it would make more sense if there was also a stated risk of damaging something short of actually destroying it outright. Increased wear and tear of the hardware (which would in turn increase the chance of failure farther down the line), something like that.
09:12:06 PM Apr 13th 2010
edited by Lilwik
I've been trying to add a note to the Space Is an Ocean entry but I can't seem to get the wording right. The point is that in real space speed counts for nothing, unless you are trying to intercept something or run away from something. If you are just flying alone through space, speed is meaningless. That's how it works in real life, but the Honorverse measures speed against some sort of ether that its ships sail through, exactly like ocean ships do. Or else they measure speed against the stars and planets, which we have to supposed are fixed in place like islands in an ocean for that measurement to be meaningful. And then there is the .8c limit that comes from requiring shielding against particles in space. That only makes sense if the particles are sitting around waiting for you to hit them so that your speed determines how hard you get hit and how frequently, very much like flying through a thin mist. Of course, in real life the particles in space are zipping in all different directions, so going fast relative to one particle is going slow relative to another, and you really have no control over how much you get hit. It's obviously just a handwave in order to put a cap on the ship's speeds to make it more like sailing. So how do we add something about that without it being edited away?
10:41:24 PM Apr 13th 2010
Because you measure it to the system primary. Yeah sure it's relative, but inside the heliopause most particles are going to be moving out at the speed of solar wind. Sure, when you leave earth and accelerate relative your home up to .8C it's just picking a frame of reference, and is arbitrary. But, the thing is everything happens around stars with that being the common frame of reference, as the Sun itself is important to be traveling relative towards to reach hyper. It is designed to give space is an ocean, but none of this usually matters because acceleration is more imporant, as that lets you dodge, and everything is always ziging.
07:24:52 AM Apr 28th 2010
In the books, speed is used to determine time to get from point a to b, so it is relevant, but secondary. It is only measured either relative to the local star (which has it's own 'velocity' thru the universe), or relative to the speed of light, which is a constant. Acceleration is the true measure of a ship's ability to maneuver, as you rightly stated. The 0.8c thing has to with the relative velocities of the particles in space (Space is not a vacuum, just very very thin, one atom per cubic kilometer is still stuff that you have to pass thru.) Traveling at 0.8c causes you to his a lot of these particles. The odds of having one particle moving in one direction at a high velocity are the same as the odds of a particle moving in the exact opposite direction and velocity so you have to treat the particles as standing still. This will cause a lot of radiation which is detrimental to human life. Add that to the normal radiation of space, add in a safety factor and you get the limit. This limit does not apply to missiles.
02:19:53 PM May 2nd 2010
You measure the speed of one object relative to another object, usually how fast it is moving toward yourself or away from yourself. You can't measure one speed relative to another speed as if substituting a speed for an object. In real life you can't know how close to the speed of light you are without having another object for comparison.

There is no 'standing still' in real space, only in space as an ocean. Is the Sun moving very fast or standing still? The question is completely meaningless because there is nothing we can use to measure its speed from in the vast empty void. It is impossible to treat real space particles as standing still for the same reason because you can't even know what 'standing still' means; you can't know how fast your ship is moving except by comparing it to other things, and those things might also be moving and throwing off your calculations.

The concept of a sea of space particles that are effectively standing still is just one of Honor Harrington's Space Is an Ocean quirks.
05:25:22 PM May 2nd 2010
You can pick a frame of reference. There isn't some universal one sure, but there are those relative toward a system's star. Say you pop into Sol at the hyperwall, you're inside the heliopause and the amount of dust and wind is of a different density. While individual dust motes are moving at random speeds outside the heliopause, there's a group velocity within the heliopause and the dust is actually less dense. The dust outside the heliopause has a different group velocity do the the way space works. Now that group velocity I'm measuring either from the system primary of Sol, or relative toward the center of the galaxy.

Individual micro meteors and particles will go faster or slower. Group velocity just describes the average velocity.

Now on to the speed of light issue, yeah you don't know how fast you're doing unless you measure it via an outside source. But there are sources to measure. The sun is moving relative to us (and we're moving relative toward it). The galaxy is also moving. Using a moving reference frame is nothing new, and you can use to explain the .8C limitation. Around a star, particles are being emitted as solarwind at a certain speed relative toward the star. That gives an ability to calculate the energy of them. Honorverse tech allows protection up until they start moving at .8c relative toward the sun.

If it were true deep space yes, it's completely arbitrary, but the speed limits only come up around a star when there's something that only gives a frame of reference, but is the source of most of the harm.
09:30:18 PM May 2nd 2010
I now admit that I made some assumptions about space that were not as well founded as I thought they were. Perhaps solar wind emissions make up the bulk of particles in space, and those particles travel at mere hundreds of kilometers per second relative to the stars, and the stars themselves aren't moving hugely fast relative to each other thanks to an orbit around the galaxy. So maybe real life space is like a sea of mixing solar emissions, and if you tried to move between stars at hundreds of thousands of kilometers per second then the particles would seem to be standing still relative to the stars, and you would have to shield yourself against them. That doesn't make the Honorverse less like an ocean, but if correct it does make real life surprisingly like an ocean.
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