YMMV Honor Harrington Discussion

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02:55:17 AM Nov 30th 2015
Threw out entire Strawman Has a Point section, as someone had apparently very little understanding of this trope.
  • Admiral Sonja Hemphill is the leading advocate of the jeune école school, which advocated using small ships with revolutionary new and powerful weapons in semi-sacrificial raids against much larger ships. At first, Honor is horrified by the callousness of the idea when applied to light cruisers. Later, when the same concept is revitalized by LAC carriers, it's painted in an entirely positive light. (To be fair, the ratio of losses was much better there, and the new LACs are designed to be able to close with enemies, whereas a light cruiser has about a snowball's chance of getting into "knife range" of its intended targets.)
    • In general, the jeune école believed that new weapons could produce wholly new tactics and revolutionize war. However, her faction had a tendency to shoot itself in the foot by embracing anything just because it was new (and because its leader had all the social skills of a particularly excited terrier). Once reined in a little, they proved absolutely right and turned centuries of military doctrine completely on its head.

The message here was never "new is bad" and Sonja wasn't supposed to be wrong about wanting new things, she was wrong for happily adopting everything that's new, just because it's new, which almost killed Honor, when she fought that Havenian q-ship. later White Haven was presented as wrong for being similarry extreme in opposite direction, shoting down potentially revolutionary project just because it requires massive changes. Messages here are allong the lines of "Don't Shoot the Message" and "take a look at both sides before you judge". These lines of thoughtwere never wrong.
  • Captain Oversteegen assigns Abigail Hearns to talk with a group of Space Amish, ostensibly because she could relate with them best, being born something of a Space Amish herself. She takes offense at this, until the ship's XO asks her if she knows of anyone else who might be better qualified to meet with them. She doesn't.

So Captain makes a point, Abigail feels ofended, but when asked for a counterpoint she didn't have any, and captain was shown as right. Where's the strawman here?

  • Mesa, who, as Weber went on record to point out, is actually right about the right and useful nature of transhumanism ideas (not genetic slavery, though). They're just being dicks about it — and that's where slavery comes in.

This one i've actually moved to it's proper place(Villain Has a Point) as they're not strawmen if author agrees with them. This trope is about guys making valid arguments against authour's intentions.

08:12:12 AM Oct 30th 2014
Pulled the Flanderization entry, as it's not that the SL was exaggerated into being nothing but puppy-punting villains, but (like Kathi's edit notes) that we didn't actually see much of the League before Eric Flint's "From the Highlands" came along in the anthologies. Developing something from a few barebones and brief mentions isn't retconning.

The original entry:

* {{Flanderization}}: As Haven became more sympathetic, the Solarian League's portrayal got worse ([[TheVillainMakesThePlot to make sure there'd be an opponent to fight]]). But where Haven actually ''became'' a better place thanks to the characters, the Solarian League's villain status is more of a gradual {{Retcon}}. In the prologue of the first book, becoming a member of the Solarian League is portrayed as something independent nations strive for. By the current books, it's treated as an open secret that the League is a dictatorship that brutally loots its new members to pay for the trains running on time in the original members, and has been that way for centuries. The alternative interpretation is that it's not that the League status was gradually retconned, but rather that the reader has seen the new sides of its society not known before. Being a League ''member'' (even not as a Core World, but a full, incorporated member sending representatives to the League Assembly), for example, is still a pretty posh deal. But may God help you if you become a League ''protectorate''...
09:21:22 AM Oct 30th 2014
I'll take your word for it — my primary attention for most of the series has been on Haven. (Surprise, surprise.)
05:13:25 PM Oct 31st 2014
So, it's okay to put that back with appropriate tweaking?
04:14:21 AM Nov 1st 2014
I actually have problems with it with or without your addition, which came across to me as a Justifying Edit. Flanderization is taking one trait of a character and exaggerating it to the point of becoming the only thing about the character.

In the case of the League, it's not that their villainy was expanded to the point of being their only trait, but that they only recently (by publishing order) have been given any significant focus at all, the Haven/Manticore war having priority in the story until the Saganami series.
08:37:35 AM Nov 3rd 2014
Yeah, it looked somewhat contrived to me as well, which is why I've added the edit in question in the first place. So maybe it's better to recast this info in lines of Out of Focus or something like that?
02:57:35 AM Nov 4th 2014
I'm not sure how OOF would apply without some mangling of the trope use. The Haven/Manticore war isn't going out of focus, if that's what you're referring to, that particular plotline was just concluded.
04:23:35 PM Nov 8th 2014
No, I'm not speaking about Haven-Manticore conflict becoming Out of Focus, but rather about shadier sides of the League being this for much of the series. After all, we've starting to see the League in any detail only since Flint came aboard the series, from Fanatic and From the Highlands onwards. Before that it just kinda lurked in the background.
11:53:48 PM Nov 8th 2014
Ah. I still don't see OOF applying. As I read OOF, the element(s) that are relegated to background status were previously given screen time (so to speak) before being pushed out of view by other events or characters.

In the case of the League, it wasn't in focus in the first place until the current plot arc.
01:22:18 AM Jul 10th 2013

While I'm aware that YMMV tropes are subjective, that doesn't excuse outright incorrect usage.

Haven, pre- or post-Peep, doesn't count at all. There was plenty wrong with the PRH, even after the Committee for Public Safety overthrew the Legislaturalists. They had slums, crumbling infrastructure, a generally poorly educated populace, and prior to the CPS economic reforms going through shortly before Theisman overthrew the Saint-Just their economy was a broken joke on the decline from their former greatness (which compared favorably to that of the Solarian League, even with the monstrous disparity in relative populations).

Post-Theisman, they still have scheming power-grabbers (including a SecState that sparked a renewal of the war with Haven with his machinations of diplomatic exchanges), the infrastructure was still mostly the crumbling mess left over from the PRH, and while improving in both economic and educational capability those aspects of the RH were still far from perfect.
10:39:24 PM Oct 19th 2013
...somebody called Haven a Mary Suetopia? Haven?? Okay, Manticore I could maybe see - I mean, it would still be wrong, as they have an imperfectly functioning government, a whole faction of cretinous politicians, and a queen with a temper problem, but at least there'd be the fact that their standard of living is higher than that of any other star system we see. But Haven??

Okay, granted, I love Thomas Theisman and Eloise Pritchart more than I love all but a handful of characters in the whole series, but no.

...sorry. I needed to vent, I guess. :D
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