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Deliberate Values Dissonance

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"Now here is Orsini alone with his [unfaithful] wife. [...] Orsini grabs the iron fire poker and hits his wife over the head, full force, wham, wham, dead. He drops the fire poker on her corpse and walks briskly out of the room, leaving it for the servants to clean up. Yes. That is the right thing, because this is the Renaissance, and these people are terrible. When word gets out there is concern over a possible feud, but no one ever comments that Orsini killing his wife was anything but the appropriate course. That is historicity, and the modern audience is left in genuine shock."

Sometimes, morals don't travel well. Often, what is appropriate to one culture at a given time can be repugnant to the same culture at another, or vice versa. Thus, when depicting other cultures, a creator has to choose whether to portray them accurately or not. Many just use their own contemporary culture for everyone in the story for narrative reasons or just to make writing it easier, resulting in an inaccurate and/or anachronistic story. Some, however, research the culture and make an effort to reproduce the attitudes of the time and place accurately, even when they are wildly different to what the author knows or might consider sensible. Thus one ends up with a case of Deliberate Values Dissonance.

In Historical Fiction and Historical Fantasy, this is often a necessity to avoid anachronisms; indeed readers may criticize works for failure to reflect the actual historically accurate views as an Anachronism Stew. This may result in an Author Tract, the story condemning or praising certain values or societal norms that are no longer relevant. Be wary, though, for sometimes Reality Is Unrealistic and the deliberately different values end up just as inaccurate, but in the opposite direction — a story could present some value as being a relic of the past even if it's still widespread at the time of its writing, or present a value as common in a specific place or time period even if it wasn't (in fact, the page quote is an example of this; murdering one's unfaithful wife with a fireplace poker was hardly universally accepted as appropriate behavior even in the Renaissance).

For Speculative Fiction this is also often a necessity, as it would make no sense for radically different societies — even if they are presented as a future version of the "present" society — to adopt exactly the same values. This can result in an Author Tract of a different kind, presenting values the author believes could or should arise in certain situations. Conversely, this could simply be a tool for Worldbuilding, especially in stories involving extraterrestrials or otherwise completely "alien" civilizations. When moral systems are so different from a reader's culture that they are almost incomprehensible, Blue-and-Orange Morality is the result.

Another way to sidestep this problem is to write a family-friendly story set in a small community with a near-homogeneous population, where controversial social or political issues never come up and in fact, can scarcely be imagined.

Often a meditation on or argument against Good Flaws, Bad Flaws. In its most exaggerated form you may get Bad Is Good and Good Is Bad. See also Your Normal Is Our Taboo, Unfortunate Implications when the author unintentionally clashes with the audience, Culture Clash for In-Universe differences, No Equal-Opportunity Time Travel when a character discovers that the cultural values of another time are hostile to them, Aluminum Christmas Trees. Contrast Politically Correct History, Eternal Sexual Freedom, Fair for Its Day, Culture Justifies Anything, The Theme Park Version. See also Idiosyncratic Cultural Gesture.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Black Butler has some fun with this, being set in Victorian England. Elizabeth doesn't have any problem with Nina Hopkins sexually assaulting Mey-Rin; after all, Mey-Rin is just the hired help, and hell, Elizabeth practically does the same thing. No, what makes her gasp and blush is Nina showing off her legs.
  • Played for Laughs in Birdy the Mighty when Tsutomu complains about Birdy drinking alcohol, claiming she's too young to drink. She's later seen working undercover in space bars, suggesting the drinking age is lower in space than in Tokyo.
  • A Bride's Story takes place in the late 1800s and is full of this, such as how Amir is practically considered an Old Maid at the ripe old age of twenty. The very premise is an example in itself: Amir has an Arranged Marriage to a 12-year-old boy named Karluk.
  • Cells at Work!: It's a requisite in order to properly present the anthropomorphized cells' functions. While all are represented as living in a standard-looking society, giant disasters happen on the regular, platelets are depicted as child workers (due to their size), and the immune system cells have no qualms killing civilian cells that have been infected by a virus that they could not defend themselves again, as they now present a threat to the body as a whole. If the whole context was removed, this would very much sound like a Crapsack World. This is briefly lampshaded by Cancer Cell during his own arc as he is defeated, shouting that all he's done is coming to this world, and yet the whole world is against him. U-1146 replies that in spite of this, he has no choice but to kill him, as he represents a danger to the entire world they live in.
  • Cells NOT at Work!: In-universe. Macrophage is deeply uncomfortable with the idea of killing Erythroblasts that cannot or will not enucleate and become Red Blood Cells, even though it’s her instinct and the law of the land.
  • Femme Kabuki being set during the Meiji Restoration explicitly points out how corrupt and unfair the new system is and the appeal/shame that comes with "Saint" Jodie Hanabusa-Abbott playing up being Gorgeous Gaijin to the Japanese audience with her blonde hair and Western clothes despite not knowing a lick of English (her Japanese is child-like and ironically innocent) due to her Disappeared Dad running out on her mother after knocking her up and being bullied as a child for being a "Rashomen's Child." She got better being part of the kabuki troupe to the extent of being an Iron Woobie that the kidnappers she tells her life story to (under the belief she was a rich White man's daughter) are motivated to improve their lives and work honestly.
  • Honoo No Alpen Rose: The Count's pedophilic crush on Jeudi. None of his men are surprised at it, and the characters object to it because Jeudi loves Lundi, and not because the Count is an adult while Jeudi is a child. To ham it in, he dances a waltz with her at the ball and no one finds it creepy, not even his own wife, who speaks of Jeudi like a romantic prospect to him.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist:
    • Most people don't seem to mind that their government is a military dictatorship, just that it's an incredibly corrupt and amoral one. Roy Mustang's dream is to reform the parliament, but other members of the upper brass are perfectly happy with the dictatorship. Any reform seems to be a long time coming as Fuhrer Grumman seems to have no interest in it.
    • The Conqueror of Shamballa movie has Ed living in Germany just as the Nazi party is rising to prominence, so there's plenty of anti-Jewish and anti-Roma prejudice going around.
  • Played for Laughs in Girls und Panzer: In-universe, tank combat is considered intensely feminine (much like naginata fencing traditionally was in Real Life Japan), and the main characters often make remarks about how weird it would be if a boy was interested in tanks. The series has a mostly male fanbase, and many fanfics involve boys getting involved in tankery or participating in a similar sport.
  • In the anime/manga of The Heroic Legend of Arslan, slavery provides the economic backbone for Pars and honourable characters such as Kishward has slaves. Many traditional nobles despise Narsus for speaking about abolishing slavery and actually freeing his own slaves. When he was younger, Arslan genuinely believed for the Lusitanian prisoners of war, it would be beneficial for them to become slaves so they wouldn't have to worry about meals again.
  • This is played with a lot in Hetalia: Axis Powers. A constant source of jokes is to have two Nations discuss aspects of their culture (clothing, food, mythology, etc) and watch their shocked reactions to each other. One particular Running Gag is Japan and America visiting each other's houses. Japan is overwhelmed by how huge his order of French Fries is, while America has a Heroic BSoD over how small the same order is in Japan. Japan is shocked by the bizarrely-colored cakes America bakes (even wanting to take one's picture) and America has no idea why a beautiful woman in Japan's house just gave him a packet of tissues for free (it was a way to advertise a sex club). At one point, Japan thinks America is a wimp for crying in fear over a movie about ghosts, while Japan himself just makes jokes about it. Japan tries to make America braver by giving him a terrifying Japanese video game to try. Instead of being scared by it, America thinks it's hilarious and replicates one of the ghosts, much to Japan's terror. That particular story ends with Japan thinking, "I have no idea what scares this guy!" (The last story, incidentally, was taken from an actual example of Values Dissonance the artist experienced. He'd watch Americans freak out over ghost movies that the Chinese guys in the room laughed at, while the Americans laughed and made jokes about Japanese horror films that the Japanese people found terrifying).
  • Lady!!: Arthur and Edward refer to Lynn as "that Chinese girl". This isn't intentional racism, more like them simply not having met a Japanese person before.
    • Also, Duke Warbawn is pressures George to marry Madeleine to have a "proper heir" since full-English Sarah is a girl as well as sickly and half-English Lynn is the kid of "an unknown Eastern woman". Sexism and racism, yay!
  • Subverted in the first Sound Stage for Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's, where Fate is hesitant to ask Nanoha to take a bath with her since she isn't aware that shared bathing is just as acceptable in Japan as it is on Mid Childa.
  • A double whammy in Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid. Not only do the various dragons have issues understanding humans due to being dragons, but all their information on humans up till this point is based off an entirely different culture whose values are nearly as alien to modern Japan as they are to the dragons.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans: Post-Calamity War society has regressed socially in a number of ways. The world military is controlled by an aristocracy, no one bats an eye arranged marriages where one of the parties involved is 11 years old, and polygamy also appears to be socially accepted. There's even a scene where Kudelia and Atra casually discuss which one of them will get to bear Mikazuki's children.
  • The Mouse character Mei was raised outside of normal society to be a Sex Slave. This affected her in many ways, the strangest of which is that she has no problem with talking very candidly to people about their fetishes.
    Sorata: Don't you think you provoked Yayoi a little too much?
    Mei: Why?
  • Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water: Just in case you forgot the series takes place in 1889, Jean's French aunt disapproves of him befriending Nadia and claims she isn't trustworthy on the basis that Nadia is black, even claiming that her dark skin makes her "strange looking".
  • Perhaps the earliest example in Naruto, the Land of Waves arc shows that Naruto (along with Team 7) are unsure about being a ninja after witnessing what happened on The Great Naruto Bridge, along with the general oppression that Haku and Zabuza faced in the country.
  • In Neon Genesis Evangelion, Asuka (who is a quarter Japanese and grew up in Germany) is baffled upon learning that none of the doors in Misato's apartment have locks. Misato then explains that it's a cultural difference, as in Japan, locking yourself in your room and separating yourself from others is considered quite rude. Comparatively, very few Westerners would see anything odd about a teenager locking her bedroom door in order to ensure privacy.
  • In Ojamajo Doremi, this sometimes happens with Momoko, who was raised in the United States and thus tends to experience Culture Clash while adjusting to living in Japan.
    • When she first transfers to the Ojamajos' school, Ms. Seki asks her to take out her earring since earrings aren't allowed in many Japanese schools. Momoko has trouble dealing with this, both because wearing earrings to school isn't a big deal in America and because her earring is a Tragic Keepsake.
    • She openly criticizes Hazuki and Onpu's lack of experience in cooking, but she doesn't understand why that offends them. Aiko explains to her that it's not in Japanese culture to be very blunt and confrontational.
  • In the Jaya flashback story in One Piece, the Shandians were willing to sacrifice Calgara's daughter to their snake god because their village was plagued with disease and death and they believed this would appease the snake god. The explorer Noland did not take this well. After stopping this, Noland is able to use science to treat the sick and becomes good friends with the tribe's chief. Noland comes to realize the illness came from some infected trees. The only preventative measure to stop the illness is to destroy the trees. Those same trees, he didn't know were believed to carry the souls of the past members of the tribe and destroyed them without telling Calgara about why it had to be done. They were banished the island, but upon learning why Noland desecrated the trees, Calgara realizes his own mistake and rushes to apologize and tell Noland he is welcome to come back.
  • In most stories involving Puella Magi Madoka Magica, the idea of Soul Gems (that the Transformation Trinket is actually the person's soul, extracted from their body) is usually treated as horrifying: certainly a violation, and it often causes them to either become far more cynical or outright despair, with Sayaka calling her own body a "zombie." However, in Puella Magi Tart Magica, Tart (the universe's equivalent to Joan of Arc) hears of this... and is positively ecstatic. As it turns out, Tart's strident medieval French Catholicism gives her a very different viewpoint than most other magical girls in the franchise, who are Japanese; rather than viewing it as a violation of her body, she interprets it as a sign of holiness that her soul can be made to take a physical form.
  • Used for comedy in One Pound Gospel; protagonist Kosaku is deeply in love with Angela, a devout Christian who is currently a novitiate in a Japanese nunnery. Because Christianity is an obscure, little-known, foreign religion in Japan, Kosaku repeatedly runs into problems of cultural disconnect due to not understanding Angela's religion — first and foremost, he believes it's perfectly okay for him to be pursuing her romantically at all because he thinks that Nuns Are Mikos, and so he doesn't realize she's expected to take lifelong vows of celibacy and chastity upon being formally ordained.
  • Red River (1995):
    • Yuri is shocked to learn that a young servant is to be hanged for attacking her (she knew he was Brainwashed and Crazy), just because under their law, she was a prince's concubine and thus a member of the royal family. She finds out that the penalty for attacking a commoner would have gotten him hard labor, and is disgusted to learn that the servant will die for class issues. Later, she is also very surprised to learn that the child (14-years-old) prince Juda has a legal wife and several concubines, and that the people of one town she stops in have no concept of basic sanitation and care for injured people.
    • When Yuri and her friends briefly stay in Egypt, they're rather shocked and embarrassed by how Ramses's sister constantly goes around topless, apparently due to the heat, and encourages Yuri to do the same. (This is actually Artistic License: people in very hot climates tend to actually wear clothing that covers their entire body to avoid exposure to the sun, with the clothing being loose to allow ventilation. Although the breast-baring style was popular at times in Ancient Egypt, it is debatable to what extent.)
    • During her stay in Egypt, Yuri learns that a little child that stole food from a temple will get his hand chopped off, and people who cannot pay their taxes will be thrown into jail or similar, and is obviously appalled. Same with the Aladdin example, this was (and still is) a very common thing done to thieves.
    • When visiting a city-state that's about to be invaded, Yuri is shocked to find the place filled with prostitutes. She tries to order them all out, on the grounds that the soldiers should be focusing on the upcoming battle, but is persuaded that it's better to let a few stay, because the men use them for stress relief. The implication is that it's normal for prostitutes to be hanging around like that.
    • When Ramses is abducting Yuri, he tells her off for struggling against him when he's being so "nice", which he defines as "not raping her". Yuri is shocked by the audacity of this, because naturally she sees kidnapping as automatically not nice behavior and not raping someone isn't worthy of praise.
    • Yuri is noted to be a very cute girl by modern standards, but in the ancient times, she's often called scrawny and boyish, even somewhat ugly. This is because beautiful women in ancient times were expected to be curvaceous and voluptuous, which Yuri is definitely not. While a number of men do end up falling for her, the story makes it very clear that they're attracted to her personality and willpower, rather than her looks.
  • In The Rising of the Shield Hero there exists slavery, public executions as entertainment, and the wholesale slaughter of everyone associated with an enemy of the state. All of these are considered perfectly normal and acceptable by the residents of the world. Naofumi on the other hand is squicked when attending executions where the people are happily cheering but reminds himself that it used to be common on Earth in the past.
    • Naofumi himself comes to own multiple slaves over the course of the series due to being so cynical and jaded initially that he can't trust other party members unless they're magically bound into obedience. However, because demis have no rights whatsoever in Melromarc, being a slave with a decent master who treats them well is actually a step up from being free, because at least then they have legal protections as property. Thus, all of Naofumi's slaves eventually develop Undying Loyalty towards him to the point of refusing to be freed.
  • As The Rose of Versailles is extremely accurate in depicting pre-Revolutionary France, this happens regularly, with two of the most extreme examples being Madame de Polignac's favorable attitude regarding Arranged Marriage between her eleven-year-old daughter and a man in his thirties and soldiers of an Household Regiment quipping how strange was having a king that dressed modestly and loved his people (the specific situation being Versailles' gardens filled with snow and Louis XVI showing up in a practical coat to order the guards to hire the poorest citizens of Paris to clean up and pay them well).
  • Spice and Wolf:
    • Quite sympathetic protagonist Lawrence considers slavery a necessary and productive trade, even after nearly being forced into slavery to pay off a debt. Meanwhile his companion, Holo, who is a wolf in human form, has a lot of wolf-like mentality; for example, she tends to focus mainly on the now, especially when it comes to stuffing her face full of food, despite Lawrence's complaints about how much money she costs as a result. A great deal of the show's entertainment consists of the two judging each other by their own set of values, and especially in Lawrence's case coming to wrong conclusions because of it.
    • Holo sees absolutely nothing wrong with being naked, she is a wolf after all. It outright angers her that Lawrence expects her to be clothed.
    • Used to build tension in the "bankruptcy" arc; most viewers, and in-universe Holo, see no reason why Holo tagging along when Lawrence goes to ask for loans to help with his debt is a problem. Lawrence's friends, however, make the assumption that Holo is some "arm-candy" that Lawrence went broke trying to impress and now he's still trying to keep her, hence the comment one finally makes that reveals to Holo she's the reason why they have all refused to help Lawrence.
  • Stepping on Roses is about a marriage of convenience between a poor girl from the Yokohama slums who is only familiar with traditional Japanese culture, and a very rich man who has been educated in the Westernised upper class of Tokyo. Naturally, they clash a LOT in regards to how things are done at home, how to dress up, what kind of behavior they should follow, etc.
  • In Tenchi Muyo! Ayeka is engaged to marry her biological half-brother, which she explains to Tenchi with little more than that's how we do things on Jurai. It's played with later on in the OVA, and then outright subverted in the spinoff material. No one in the family (except Ayeka), expected the marriage to go down, and the whole point was to keep anti-integration activists from supporting Ayeka as an alternative to Yosho as Emperor. (This raises several questions when you realize that Ayeka's grandmother, Seto, is adopted, and that the current Emperor is of mixed blood himself.)
    • While incest being relative in Jurai is indeed the Deliberate Values Dissonance (and sort of Author Appeal, as Kajishima delights in risque sexual humor in general), the weird dancing about Fantastic Racism is, sadly, more of a Continuity Lockout, as the reasons for this complex maneuvering are All in the Manual, most of which are of the No Export for You sort.note 
  • Vinland Saga:
    • Thorfinn has no problem with his comrades raping women, though he doesn't personally join in. Likewise the slave trade is treated like a normal business by most of the people shown.
    • Leif, despite being one of the most morally upstanding and likable characters in the series, is shown to have a Stay in the Kitchen attitude regarding the role of women. Needless to say, feminism and gender equality weren't exactly all the rage in early 11th century Europe. note 
    • During the second arc, a pair of children steal from the farm where most of the arc takes place. It's acknowledged that their father is almost certainly dead (or, at best gone), since he's been missing for about a year. Despite acknowledging that they're children (the older of the two is 12), who have little choice but to steal to survive, the brutal Thorgil goes to enact the standard punishment for thieves; cutting an arm off each of them. Pater, who is another one of truly good characters in the series, offers an alternative: have them Work Off the Debt... and get a good beating with a sturdy wooden rod to set them straight. Again, one of the kindest and most moral characters nonchalantly suggests beating two preteens half senseless with a wooden rod as a merciful alternative punishment. Furthermore, it's up to Ketil, the man who owns the farm that the two stole from, to decide how many strokes they need to take from the rod, rather than an uninterested third party. Had Ketil decided that he wasn't satisfied with anything less than a number of hits that would have resulted in the children being beaten to death, everyone around would have shrugged and simply gone through with it. Fortunately Ketil is not a vengeful man and doesn't set such a blatantly unfair penalty, despite having the power to do so.
    • Hild's flashback to her younger years depicts her mother as being worried about Hild's future because Hild spends all her time working as an engineer in her father's mill/carpentry workshop, and at the ripe old age of 13 Hild hasn't done anything yet to start preparing to attract a husband or learn how to tend to a household. In her little screen time Hild's mother is shown to have been an obviously kind and caring woman, but she's gobsmacked when her husband suggests that Hild's astounding skills as an engineer (as in, literal centuries ahead of her time), are more important than getting a husband or having children.
  • Used as part of the Deconstructor Fleet presented in Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V. The people of the Synchro Dimension don't care that the losers of the Friendship Cup are Made a Slave, something which horrifies Yuya, as he considers duels something only for fun.
  • Played positively in Zom 100: Bucket List of the Dead. Kanbayashi complains about how no one ever respected her viewpoint as The Perfectionist while ranting about how she never did anything wrong. Beatrix responds by saying that it's normal to chew gum at work in Germany, that it's frowned upon to clean on Sundays when everyone else is resting, and that people celebrating their birthdays are expected to be responsible for their own parties, all things a Japanese person would find abhorrent. In doing so, Beatrix says that no viewpoint is absolutely correct and just, as everyone has different standards and customs.


  • Grande Odalisque: The hookah, peacock fan, and bejeweled turban were all added to the picture to create a cultural distance, making the figure seem Turkish instead of French and thus lessening the scandal of the nude figure.

    Comic Books 
  • Alan Moore's 1963 is a Retraux meant to emulate Silver Age Marvel comic books, right down to the artwork, writing style.... and the rampant sexism and heavy-handed anti-communism that were commonplace in early Marvel comics.
  • Occurs in Joss Whedon's Astonishing X-Men, where Wolverine is mentally regressed to childhood and believes he's still living in the 1800s. He ignores Kitty Pryde's orders on the basis that she's a woman, calls Armor an "Oriental," and refers to the Japanese language as "Heathen funny talk."
  • Atomic Robo reminds us that H. P. Lovecraft was a massive racist and xenophobe, even compared to his contemporaries. Take, for example, when he mistakes Robo for a pygmy dressed in ceremonial black ritual armor:
    Robo: 'Scuze me.
    Lovecraft: Ah! Look, it's attempting to communicate. No doubt the savage thing knows language as a house pet knows its reflection in the mirror. The sense is taken in, but the process, the meaning, is forever lost.
    Robo: Yer razzin' me.
    Lovecraft: See how vainly it cobbles together a string of sounds not unlike words? Take. Us. To. Magic. Thunder. Man.
    Robo: Uh-huh.
  • In an issue of Cable and X-Force, Doctor Nemesis asks a nervous Forge "Where's [his] pioneer spirit?" Forge, a member of the Cheyenne Nation, immediately takes offense to the question, since his people obviously have a far more negative opinion of pioneers than white Americans do.
  • Captain America:
    • The Ultimate Marvel version presents Cap with some rather modernly distasteful attitudes, as part of a more "realistic" take on what a soldier and average American citizen from 1940 would really be like, especially if he time-skipped to the 2000s. Most prominently, he's a Noble Bigot, a firm believer in My Country, Right or Wrong (as seen during his confrontation with Ultimate Nuke), and he holds an infamous disdain for the French, whom he views as Cheese-Eating Surrender Monkeys. The last is probably meant to reflect a US soldier's loathing of the French as a whole for capitulating to the Nazis early in the War and forcing many US soldiers to die trying to free the French from their own government, though it's rather ahistorical. America was still rather Francophilic at the time — General Patton adored the country — and anti-French sentiment only really picked up during the 1950s under deGaulle's rather abrasive leadership of the nation. This contrasts with 616-Cap, who worked with the Resistance and hates portrayals of the French as cowards: "The government surrendered. The people never did."
      • An inadvertently inverted version cropped up in The Ultimates 3. Cap's horror and disgust at Wanda and Pietro's incestuous relationship was framed as him being out of touch and old-fashioned in the face of his teammate's casual acceptance of it. Given that virtually everyone in the modern era considers incest to be... icky, he comes off as the Only Sane Man.
    • Warren Ellis gives a similar portrayal in Nextwave. In a flashback, Cap is shown telling Captain Marvel (his black, female teammate) to leave a battle and make him something to eat. Then again, this is Nextwave, so it's Played for Laughs.
    • The idea is subverted in an issue of Young Avengers. Wiccan is shocked when Captain America expresses approval for his gay relationship with Hulkling, figuring that someone born in the 1920s would not view homosexuals in a positive light. (Oddly enough, the most common backstory for Steve Rogers has him grow up in a prominent gay neighborhood.)
    • When the Young Allies spin-off about Bucky Barnes was revisited in the 2000s, the whole series was retconned into being in-universe propaganda comics taking creative liberties with the actual team. Needless to say, Washington Jones (an African-American who served with distinction in the United States Air Force after World War 2, and retired as a Colonel) is horrified over his fictionalized counterpart and how he was portrayed.
    • During Ed Brubaker's Captain America run, there was a one-shot where the Winter Soldier teamed up with the Young Avengers. Though he got along well with the black teen hero Patriot (he was friends with the black Human Top and the Japanese-American Golden Girl during WWII), Kate Bishop called him out on his language after he referred to a group of Mooks as "pansies." Kate pulls out "some of our best friends are [gay]" Barnes says he meant it in the sense of "wimps", probably aware that pansy has been used as a slang term for gay men since the 1920s.
    • In the '70s, Cap and the Falcon fought William Burnside and Jack Monroe, the Captain America and Bucky of the 1950s. Both were decidedly racist and sexist, with Jack in particular hurling racist insults at the Falcon and insinuating that Sharon Carter was a weakling because she's a woman. Burnside ultimately graduated to a full-fledged Evil Reactionary supervillain, a willing ally of the neo-fascistic far-right "Watchdogs" and even of the Red Skull in their fight to forcibly restore American culture to a 1950s hardline conservative's version of "the good old days".
    • Speaking of, Red Skull and other founding members of Hydra are/were Nazis, and have all all the horrible, regressive views you'd expect them to have. On top of existing Nazi bigotry towards Jews and other real-life minorities, they also display Fantastic Racism towards metahumans like Mutants. Some, very seldom, portrayals of Red Skull give him more understandable takes, like being disgusted with modern day America's obsession with Conspicuous Consumption and and allowing corporations to act with minimal oversight. In these cases, Skull actually has a degree of sympathy for Cap, who in his mind is the only person on Earth he can truly relate to.
  • Marvel's Civil War (2006) used this in-story when a member of Alpha Flight mentioned that the conflict and angst over the Superhuman Registration Act looked ridiculous to heroes outside the United States as many countries apparently had some form of registration already without it being a source of drama. Alpha Flight's members in particular have to be registered with the federal government: Department H is part of Canada's military. Various X-Men characters also pointed out that the vast majority of non-mutant heroes had failed to speak up when various versions of a Mutant Registration Act were being pushed by the government and so had little sympathy for either side.
  • Warren Ellis's Crécy is a warts-and-all depiction of the famous Battle of Crécy in 1346. The narrator acknowledges the dissonance, describing himself as "a complete bloody xenophobe who comes from a time when it was acceptable to treat people from the next village like they were subhumans" and admitting that by modern standards his side have been "acting like evil pricks", but insists that the other side was even worse.
  • In the Dead Girl miniseries, dead 40s heroine Miss America and dead 00s hero the Anarchist get along poorly at first because, well... he's black. She even refers to him using the n-word at one point.
  • In De Cape et de Crocs, which takes place in the 18th century, a scientist comments that white-skinned savages must be more likely to listen to reason that their ebony-skinned brethren. Amusingly enough, the one dark-skinned member of the tribe proves to be just as enlightened as the heroes.
  • The 2009 Marvel MAX Dominic Fortune series by Howard Chaykin is set in the 1930s, and is absolutely drenched in this trope. All the main male characters throw racial, sexual and Antisemitic slurs around with careless abandon — even the ones who aren't unrepentant Nazi sympathizers — and treat women mostly as animated sex dolls who exist solely for their sexual gratification. The women also take any opportunity to get their clothes off and have sex, but that can probably be chalked up to a different trope.
  • Will Eisner's Fagin the Jew doesn't shy away from depicting the widespread anti-Semitism of 19th-century Britain and the deleterious effects it has on British Jews. It also doesn't sugarcoat the rather complicated relations between first- and second-generation Ashkenazi immigrants who tended to live in slums and affluent, assimilated Sephardi communities.
  • Forever Evil (2013): Earth 3 is an entire world where heroism, justice, and the basic good are considered foreign.
  • The Good Asian is a Hardboiled Detective story written in the 2020s whose main character is Chinese-American police detective Edison Hark, and is set in 1936. Absolutely no punches are pulled in depicting the racism and misogyny of the era, or how Asian-Americans were second-class citizens at best. Various racist historical laws, documents, and court decisions are frequently quoted or referenced, reinforcing the oppressive atmosphere that the characters live under. Even the Asian characters use a lot of terminology for Asians that would not fly today, such as referring to people as Orientals, "Chinaman", or the subtle but persistent theme that as far as everyone is concerned, American = white person.
  • In the Greece of the 1200s BC DC's Hercules would have been a genuine hero. He hasn't evolved much, however, which makes him a pretty dark character by modern standards and occasional outright villain for Wonder Woman.
  • Likewise, in the "Obsidian Age" arc from JLA, the team faces off against a sort of proto-Justice League (known simply as the League) that was formed thousands of years in the past. Martian Manhunter immediately notes that the members of the League have a distinct advantage over the modern heroes, as unlike them the ancient heroes come from a time where 21st century standards of morality do not apply, meaning they have no problem with killing their enemies to save the day.
  • Jurassic League is a DC Alternate Universe miniseries depicting counterparts to superheroes and villains as sentient dinosaurs living alongside prehistoric humans. It averts Herbivores Are Friendly and Predators Are Mean by having herbivores and carnivores on both sides, and everyone accepts carnivores needing to kill to survive as a fact of nature. However, while killing for food isn't seen as evil, killing for fun is. Hunting humans is also generally seen as not OK, not because they're sentient but because they're too small to be worth eating as a matter of survival so it's just gratuitous.
  • League of Extraordinary Gentlemen positively adores this trope in any era it covers. One of the very first lines in the series sets the tone:
  • The Mall (2018): The series is set in The '80s, and the attitudes toward non-Americans and gays reflects that. Diego, a boy of Hispanic descent, is referred to as a "wetback" by a couple of Edison High School Jocks. Leonard Cardini, who's a gay man, is also referred to by a number of anti-gay slurs by another gangster.
  • Very common in the Chilean comic Mampato, where in his multiple trips in time and space our heroes have encountered things like slavery, racism, sexism, disproportionate punishments (Twenty lashes for stealing an apple!) , Human Sacrifice, etc, etc, in addition to a fairly anti-ecological treatment of wildlife, such as when Chilean farmers use traps to kill condors, because they steal the young of the cattle, something that real life condors, which feed on dead animals, never do.
  • In Marshal Law, the members of the Jesus Society of America can hardly see an Asian person or hear a German word without coming to the conclusion that they've become stranded in a parallel universe where the Axis won World War II. Oh, and Marshal Law sets the record straight that these guys were legitimately not real heroes by any stretch of the imagination.
  • Maus: Having been on the receiving end of the single worst example of institutionalized racism in human history has done nothing to soften Vladek's attitudes towards black people, and he goes on a couple of blisteringly racist rants in Yiddish, much to the disgust of people around him.
  • In Marvel Comics #1000, the Eternity Mask only functions for people who truly believe in equality, making them the equal of their foes. For most of the story, it's used by American heroes fighting for democracy, or failed to be used by those whose ideals have been contaminated by elitism. In the flashback to its origin in Arthurian England, both the Black Knight and the narration have no question that its creators are villains, with a mad scheme to overturn the divine rights of the nobility, and that any society in which their beliefs succeeded would be terrible.
  • In the first issue of Muties, the main character says that this is the story of how he became a hero. His "heroic act" turns out to be murdering a mutant classmate.
  • In New Super-Man, the heroes are agents of the authoritarian Chinese government, while the villains are pro-democracy dissidents.
  • In the very first issue of Paper Girls, one of the protagonists insults a group of bullies by calling them "faggots" and insinuating that they have AIDS. Brian K. Vaughan has said he was aware the scene would upset gay and lesbian readers, but that he felt it was important to establish just how rampant casual taunts about sexuality were in the 1980s. Mac, the girl in question, also smokes heavily without any regard for what it'll mean for her health, despite being a kid. When the girls later travel to 2016, they find out that Mac ends up dying from leukemia, and they make the logical (but, as it will eventually be revealed, wrong) conclusion that it was brought on by her fondness for cigarettes.
  • This portrayal of Lovecraft also shows up in the Planetary/Authority crossover:
  • Radioactive Man has fifties sensibilities played for laughs, so characters have disdain for reds and pinkos. Radioactive Man will go after peaceful hippie protesters the same as violent criminals because he believes proclamations of peace and love are communist propaganda. He dislikes discrimination but is obliviously proud to be an American when kids are put through the same and believes that citizens should unquestioningly follow authority such as the president.
  • Runaways:
    • A storyline has the team finds themselves in America in 1907. There, they meet a girl named Klara Prast. Klara is more upset at the possibility of them recruiting her for a union than the fact that she was forced by her parents to marry a man who is old enough to be her father, and who beats her and is implied to rape her. Molly fails to realize this when Klara alludes to it; Karolina does. Later, Klara refers to Xavin in female, black form as a "negress" and is disgusted at female Xavin and Karolina being intimate.
    • The same storyline has an instance where Karolina takes an evening stroll and is mistaken for a prostitute by a creepy man, on the grounds that that's the only sort of woman who'd be walking around the city at this time of night. When she tries to correct the mistake, he refuses to listen and drags her into an alley. One beat panel later, he goes flying across the street and Karolina comments "Looks like history just lost another buff".
    • The 2017 series has a more subtle case, where Gert comes back from the dead still carrying her Bush-era cynicism and distrust of adults and authority figures, which puts her at odds with her teammates, most of whom are approaching adulthood and have realized that such attitudes aren't terribly conductive to getting a job or an education.
  • The Sandman (1989):
    • In "Ramadan" the Caliph Haroun Al-Raschid, regarded as a paragon of justice by his contemporaries, has several torture chambers in his palace and not only has a harem of wives, but also several underage boys (though they appear to be at least in their teens), which were common practices at the time. Immortal characters often suffer Values Dissonance about their own actions, such as Hob Gadling's guilt over his involvement in the slave trade.
    • At one point in "August", which is set in Ancient Rome, a disguised Emperor Augustus meets a man who was born into slavery, but was later freed and grew up to become a wine merchant with his own large collection of slaves. This is treated as an inspirational Rags to Riches story (as it would have been at the time), with no one finding it odd that a former slave would take pride in owning slaves of his own.
  • Sandman Mystery Theatre actually dealt with the racism and sexism prevalent in 30s and 40s, in sharp contrast to the colorful and nostalgic depictions of the Golden Age seen in most DC Comics publications.
  • One storyline in Scooby-Doo! Team-Up saw the gang transported back to 1942 to help out the Justice Society of America. Daphne was understandably appalled to discover that Wonder Woman, one of the JSA's most powerful members, was relegated to being the team's secretary. Subverted in that by the end of the story, some of the male JSA members have decided that they should all take turns doing that job.
  • The Shadow had a comic series revival in the 1980s where he returned from a complete isolation he began in 1949, and still had all the cultural attitudes of a 1930s aristocrat. Amusingly enough, his sons grew up in the same isolation, and were comically oversaturated with 80s culture.
  • Regular Shazam! villain Black Adam is Captain Marvel's predecessor in the distant past. Five thousand years ago, he was a great hero who rose up from slavery, freed his people from the cruelty of an evil tyrant, and ruled over them for many years as a just, wise, and beloved king who bravely fought to protect them and brought them safety, peace, and plenty. But in the modern age of democracy and superheroes who respect the sanctity of life, his once Grade-A heroic methods look rather barbaric.
  • In Spider-Verse, Spider-Man Noir comes off as a bit sexist and racist to his fellow Spiders. He's from a world where it is essentially the 1930s.
  • Storm Saxon is a Show Within a Show for V for Vendetta. The entire premise seems to be a white guy killing villains based on racist stereotypes (such as Where da White Women At?).
  • In Strontium Dog, during a story detailing how Johnny and Wulf first met, Wulf and his Viking pals celebrate a good raid by killing a bunch of slaves and splattering their blood everywhere. It's all in good fun.
  • Superman & Batman: Generations, as part of its total aversion of Comic-Book Time, has the characters behaving in era-appropriate ways. In the 1939 chapter Superman gladly helps Batman pull a High-Altitude Interrogation, while in later chapters he's adopted his famous Thou Shalt Not Kill policy and even insists that he be punished for killing the Ultra-Humanite, even though the jury was convinced it was an accident that happened during self-defense. Likewise, in the same chapter Lois Lane describes cigarettes as if she were filming a cereal commercial, but has an entirely different attitude decades down the line when diagnosed with cancer.
  • Superman Smashes the Klan is set in the 1940's, so casual racism is everywhere, between the depictions of Asians as alien conqueror in film, the racism displayed against the Lees by Chuck, the Klan, and an old police officer, and Clark's own fear of being outed as an alien.
  • The Transformers: More than Meets the Eye takes some time to demonstrate the many cultural differences that a race of biomechanical beings may have:
    • As Transformers don't reproduce sexually, there are no taboos or stereotypes regarding sexuality or gender. Two Transformers of the same gender being in a relationship is not viewed as any different to two of the opposite gender being together.
    • Bigotry is based not on things like color or orientation, but on things like what alt mode you have or what manner you were built in. Transformers who choose not to transform and have their t-cogs removed are often seen as odd.
    • At one point the crew has to make sure that a bar permits mechanical lifeforms, suggesting that racial segregation is allowed to be practiced in the galactic community. None of the characters complain about this or see it as unreasonable.
    • Most Decepticons believe that every race and culture has a right to defend or sustain itself no matter what. This belief goes to the extent that raids like those performed by Vikings are considered justified if they're being done for survival purposes; for example, in issue 12 we see a Decepticon battalion who kidnap natives on a planet to use for Pink Alchemy and don't consider it wrong because they're starving and desperate.
    • Best friends are treated with the same weight as spouses, being referred to with the legal term "amica endure". Of course, when you live millions of years, having someone you can stand to be around for most of that time is pretty amazing.
    • Cross culture problems occur in-universe; Autobots strongly believe in a mix of democracy and egalitarianism, while Decepticons believe in a sort of fusion of communism and meritocracy. At one point Krok finishes off an already wounded enemy and none of the Scavengers react much, while First Aid has a guilt-induced breakdown after killing the defenseless Pharma. Autobots allow members to follow whatever beliefs they want, while Decepticons are almost all atheists and tend to talk down to those who do practice religion.
      • The Transformers from the colony world Caminus worship the Primes — including Optimus Prime — as deities. This causes some problems when a group of them tries to proselytize about Optimus in a Decepticon ghetto.
    • Quite a few Autobots as well as Decepticons look down on the organic races as inferior and weaker, although Autobots do tend to have more respect for human culture.
  • Ultimate X-Men: Xavier's plan is going well, as he has negotiated an halt to the Sentinel initiative and a human-mutant summit. He is pleased with it. Cyclops, however, wants equal rights, now. Xavier points that this usually a juvenile attitude, and as an adult he knows patience, seeing the bigger picture and taking slow but secure steps instead of rushed ones.
  • Usagi Yojimbo is famous for it being a scrupulously well-researched depiction of feudal Japan, the funny animal characters notwithstanding, including its social attitudes to a certain degree. For instance, Sanshobo told the story to Usagi of how he failed to save the son of his master from falling to his death. Sanshobo told his own son there was only one to make up for that failure; his son stated he understood what was involved, and deliberately leaped to his own death. While the average Western reader would be horrified to see a tragedy compounded by another, neither Sanshobo nor Usagi dispute that was the right thing to do in their eyes.
    • The series often plays up how devotion to your lord is supposed to take precedence above all else. In one notable instance, the villain has Usagi captured while Tomoe escapes. The villain plans to torture and mutilate Usagi unless Tomoe comes back for him. She does come back for him, but since she is immediately captured for it when she could have reported the entire operation back to her lord, she states multiple times that she should have left him for dead to let her lord know what the villain was doing. Usagi, for his part, doesn't seem too hurt whenever she says it (and even expected her to leave him to die initially.)
    • Usagi has a deep and abiding loathing for non-Japanese people. Though, given that his contacts with foreigners generally involve some combination of guns, tuberculosis and general assholery, it's quite understandable.
    • While Usagi is generally an even-tempered and polite fellow, he does not hesitate to berate or even beat a disrespectful or disobedient peasant when the situation calls for it.
    • Usagi is also deeply distrustful of Christians, and spends a lot of time wondering how a convicted criminal could be worthy of worship. While he doesn't hold any particular ill-will against them, he is also not shy about handing them over to the authorities when he finds them. Christianity, is, after all, a forbidden religion.
  • In Watchmen, Captain Metropolis and Hooded Justice are a gay couple, but hide their sexuality, with Silk Spectre I pretending to be HJ's girlfriend and the Silhoutte is forced to quit the team when her lesbianism is revealed. This is on-point with the 1940s, where homosexuality was very much taboo and even criminalized in much of the United States.
  • At least one comic book version of Xena: Warrior Princess walked back some of the show's Anachronism Stew by showing a slight difference of attitudes toward slavery between Xena and Gabrielle. When presented with a Roman band of slaves about to be auctioned off, Gabrielle is appalled at slavery in general (not a common attitude in classical Rome) and in particular, that one of the slaves is a pregnant woman. Xena, in contrast, is generally convinced that the (otherwise all-male) slaves must be criminals who've done something to deserve their situation, but makes an exception in the pregnant woman's case as it seems improbable to her that a pregnant woman could be guilty of any serious crime. Xena and Gabrielle thus agree to go buy the woman free, each for their own reasons — but leave the rest of them to be sold. Conversely, while touting the various qualities of the slaves, the auctioneer not only flogs how strong one particular big black guy is, but adds "...and smart! Nubians are smart! You'll never have to tell him anything twice." (If a slave auctioneer in America's antebellum Old South had advertised a slave's intelligence, he would have had a hard time making the sale; a smart "uppity" slave was considered a likely flight risk. Roman masters, in contrast, regularly encouraged their slaves to learn a trade and buy themselves free so they could buy younger slaves to replace them and wouldn't have to pay for older slaves' upkeep when they were too old to work.)
  • The back matter in X-Men Noir is a Stylistic Suck pulp adventure story written by this universe's counterpart of Bolivar Trask, about a "superman" fighting mutants. Perhaps surprisingly, given both the racism often seen in such stories in real life and 616-Trask's Fantastic Racism, the story is very clear that Nimrod and the Sentinels are superior due to being mixed race. It then explains exactly what traits they inherited from each race, so it still comes across as pretty racist by modern standards.

    Comic Strips 
  • Non Sequitur:
    • A customer at Flo's diner is talking about all the wonderful things about The '50s and how America going back to that time and those values would be better for everyone, and Flo replies that she agrees and will turn the diner retro, "starting with this vintage sign..." She writes something down and shows it to him, but with her back to the "camera," all we see is his horrified reaction. In the next panel, we see what the sign says: "WHITES ONLY." The man concedes, "Well, maybe not better for everyone."
    • Danae visits an alternate universe in which every person is given one wish. It's revealed that Clarence Thomas (real life Associate Justice of the Supreme Court) wished for the United States Constitution to be interpreted as the Founding Fathers originally intended, and it is implied that he is now a servant/slave because of it.

    Fan Works 
  • Adventures in the Human Realm: Gus, because of his dark skin, gets racially profiled by a racist woman. There isn't skin color discrimination in the Boiling Isles, meaning Gus is confused when the woman throws around phrases like "you people."
  • Aen'rhien Vailiuri: Morgan t'Thavrau is Romulan, not human, and doesn't see anything wrong with killing an unarmed Kazon prisoner in anger. Legally she was within her rights (the Federation is apparently about the only major star nation that doesn't execute people for piracy), and the Kazon had just impugned her right to command the ship. Her human operations officer Jaleh Khoroushi disagrees. Vehemently. (So does the author, citing the trope in the author's notes.)
  • All Assorted Animorphs AUs: The Rachel in "What if they were all from different AUs á la Into the Spider-Verse?" seems unfazed that her version of the US enslaves blind people and sees her Jewish ancestry as a flaw.
  • The Alphabet Story: Anna admits that she doesn't think Elsa's attraction towards women is natural, but she'll support her sister anyway long as it makes her happy. Anna is an Ambiguously Christian woman living in the 1800s, so her less-than-perfect reaction isn't unheard of.
  • Anthropology: Lyra is obsessed with humanity, and adopts some of their habits, like her sitting and wearing clothes, but most ponies are shown to be confused by these things. Later on in the story, she learns of humanity's history of violence and conflict, and their consumption of meat (the latter she found out about by having eaten a Big Mac), and while horrified, she still admires their history of innovation. Lyra's human friend Audrey is shocked to learn that Lyra has been on her own since she was 12, while she is still a minor at 16, and is shocked by some of her habits like eating plants. Most of her human friends are pretty nonchalant about human conflict. This trope abounds as Lyra struggles to adapt to the human world.
  • Araceil's Untameable:
    • After kicking a bunch of child-trafficking slavers' asses, Harry brings them back to the settlement in order for the villagers to sentence them. The villagers gleefully hang the slavers, to Harry's utter shock since the United Kingdom abolished death penalty roughly twenty years before his birth.
    • School corporal punishment is very much a virtue in Imperial China. Yue Qingyuan, who no one can accuse from being a sadist, is left utterly baffled by Shen Qingqiu's refusal to whip his disciples for unruliness and genuinely believes Qing Jing Peak's bullying problem could be solved with more beatings.
  • Atlas Shrugged: The Cobra Commander Dialogues has the morality of the 80s Saturday Morning villain Cobra Commander clash with the views of characters in the titular novel. Cobra Commander comes off as a lot more sane and intelligent.
  • Bad Influence has 1980s-typical behavior towards homosexuality and bisexuality. Jerrica and Aja are fine with Kimber and Stormer's relationship but clearly aren't comfortable with it. They also view it as a sign of Kimber being "homosexual", without any consideration that she could be bisexual.
  • The Battle for Narn: The Centauri just don't get many parts of Human culture. Tellingly is ambassador Zainus Callo's opinion on human anti-slavery beliefs: he's convinced it's the result of human slavers acting stupid and causing an excessive reaction, and brings the events of the Amistad as example (in this case, the violation of the slave trade ban and US slavers trying to have the Mende treated as slaves anyway).
  • The Harry Potter/Reborn! (2004) crossover Black Sky has this in spades:
    • A Zabini auditor thinks perfectly normal and justified to burn a rapist alive while Squalo — who is a professional assassin for The Mafia — calls him a vigilante for taking the law in his own hands.
    • The Mafia is very strict about your sexual partner's age: if they are under sixteen, they're off-limits, and if you ignore this, you're asking for a bullet in your brain. In the Wizarding society, a witch is eligible for marriage after passing the appropriate exams, meaning that a barely 15-years-old Dorea Black deciding to wed wasn't seen as particularly noteworthy. Her husband is however horrified when he learned how young she was when they consummated.
  • Blood and Honor: Neither Sanguis nor Quinn have a problem with slavery, as it's both legal and common in the Empire. Quinn is also very anti-alien and consistently treats Vette as less than a person.
  • In Boys und Sensha-do!, this trope comes into play to an extent. Akio is more Americanized than the mainly Japanese cast, and has a tendency to speak his mind more easily. As such, when Miho's mother visits her in the hospital to disown her (something that he points out is almost unheard of in America, particularly not in his family), he lays into her with a "The Reason You Suck" Speech.
  • There are a few brief scenes in Cars: Downunder that have Mater and McQueen being confused by the different ways of life in Australia (such as people driving on the left side of the road).
  • Child of the Storm:
    • It is noted that while the Captain Britain of the 1970s, Brian Falsworth, was out to his close childhood friend Alison Carter (and possibly to his friends and family), he wasn't out publicly. Instead, he had to maintain a superficially solely professional relationship with his professional and romantic partner Roger Aubrey, while Alison acted as The Beard for him on several occasions, while Roger apparently "made his own arrangements".
    • While Asgard initially comes off as a progressive utopia which works well with most of modern Earth, it is made quite clear that it's far from perfect: there's an unconscious expectation of military prowess, especially in noble bloodlines (with the implication that those lacking it get a related degree of lesser respect), and while they're fond of humanity and like their plucky style, the average Asgardian view is benevolent condescension (though the Avengers are changing that). Additionally, they only ever accepted one mortal race (Kryptonians) as their equals, and there's prevalent discrimination against Frost Giants. Oh, and due to the whole 'living for over 5000 years' thing, it can be a little difficult for them to get the significance of a decade here and there — which Harry, who's 13 at the start of the story, and has abandonment issues, is not pleased about.
    • And it turns out that Odin is a pretty progressive rule, who's spent the last several thousand years trying very hard to course correct from his father's reign. While his grandfather, Buri, is indicated to have been the same, Odin's father, Bor Burison, was a very different matter, with the story illustrating how unpleasant things were. Use and abuse of humans was either ignored or encouraged, Stay in the Kitchen values were in favour, Arranged Marriages were the norm, and Asgard's grip on the Nine Realms was much more iron-fisted, brutal and militaristic. The key point, though, is that while he is seen as "a throwback" and the main reaction is "good riddance", he was well enough supported in his lifetime and going by in-story accounts, despite several millennia of hard work Odin is still undoing his misrule. It is also heavily implied that Bor is far from the only ruler of that kind Asgard has had, with the assessment of potential Kings and Queens by the Norns focusing less "will this person be The Good King?", more "will this person go Axe-Crazy and threaten the integrity of Yggdrasil?", with Thor citing Loki, Bor, and himself pre Character Development as examples of the sort of people it does not filter out.
    • This is elaborated upon and nuanced in Book III - on the one hand, Asgard was a much nicer place under Buri's rule, and indeed during Sunniva's time about 30,000 years before that. Bor was the way he was partly because of natural inclination, and partly because while he Used to Be a Sweet Kid, both he and all of Asgard was twisted by Malekith using the Aether to make them fit his prejudiced image of Asgard, Bor himself taking the brunt of it. While Buri managed to mitigate it so he couldn't change too much of the past, a lot of it stuck in the present - and in Bor's case, he decided he liked it. This set Asgard back hundreds of thousands of years. On the other hand, Sunniva's Asgard is implied to be considerably more insular, less concerned with Earth save as an occasional tourist destination, and that Stone Age humanity is seen as a bunch of primitives, an academic interest at best and mostly ignored. While Sunniva is indicated to be standard in finding the idea of playing god and essentially bullying humans to be abhorrent, and the idea of Double Standard: Rape, Divine on Mortal to be truly vile, and fundamentally Spoiled Sweet, she's a bit of a Noble Bigot towards humans... until she actually meets some and has her assumptions turned on their head.
  • Invoked in The Conversion Bureau fanfic TCB: A Beacon Of Hope. The New Athenians are newfoals who rebelled against their programming and created their own society, and while New Athens is at worst Crapsack Only by Comparison and anyone immigrating from Equestria can live there comfortably the newfoals really love playing up how much they hate ponykind and everything Celestia stands for around anyone who actually agrees with Celestia.
  • In the Last Train side story for The Conversion Bureau: The Other Side of the Spectrum, British-born Tess Jones is shown to be uncomfortable with the idea of handling guns compared to her American and Canadian companions despite the Conversion War having gone on for three very long and trying years by this point.
  • A Dance on the Mats: A human male finds himself in an Equestria Girls setting where gender roles are reversed. The character's fighting prowess is treated In-Universe with disbelief, since his muscle mass is seen as a hindrance. On the other side of the coin, Rainbow considers her constant defeat at Anon's hands to be as humiliating as a guy being beaten by a girl would feel in our world.
  • Danganronpa: Paradise Lost: The very first motive revolves entirely around the real life Japan's draconian anti-drug laws, where possession can lead to hefty prison sentences and mere accusations can result in ruined careers. More specifically, Monokuma threatens the new cast of students with, unless somebody kills within 72 hours, exposing at least one of them as a drug dealer and addict.
  • Dazzling Sun: Aria reveals that, in the 1930s, she fell in love with an up and coming actress named Gazing Star. When their relationship was outed by somebody who saw them kissing in the park, the actress' career was destroyed due to the time period's view on homosexuality, and she eventually took her own life. Sunset reveals to Aria that the actress was Vindicated by History as a martyr of sexual discrimination, and that her movies are now Cult Classics for several LBGTQA+ civil rights groups.
  • Destiny Intertwined: After Hayze is found to be using Shadow in the first chapter, Lynerius punishes him by whipping him with his lightning breath. The comic's author note explains that corporal punishment is widespread in Warfang's culture, especially in its higher classes, and that Lynerius would have been raised with it as a fact of life.
  • Doors to the Unknown: This crops up many a time, for both Valigan and the characters from Worm that find themselves in the Dungeons & Dragons multiverse. For the former, the sensibilities common to a Heroic Fantasy universe like D&D frequently clash with the Capepunk world of Worm. This manifests in Valigan's consistent bafflement at the conventions of the cape world. The reverse is also true, with THACo initially having trouble adapting from a world of heroes and villains to one with much more (overt) nuance.
  • Don't Say Goodbye, Farewell: Due to her cultural background (Bajoran) and the fact that she herself was nearly enslaved by Orions as a 19-year-old, Eleya's view of the conflict between the Moab Confederacy and the Orions comes off a little skewed by Federation norms. She evinces some approval of various acts committed by Moabite anti-slavery raiders that would normally be considered war crimes (torture, summary executions, taking ears as trophies and leaving playing cards as calling cards). It's also noted that the Bajorans had to abolish the death penalty and stop hanging Cardassian collaborators to join the Federation. Using underage soldiers, however, proves a bridge too far.
  • Doofenshmirtz Hero Incorporated!:
    • The indifference to bullying endemic to the Japanese education system is mind-boggling to Doofenshmirtz, a man born in a German-esque country who has lived in America where such things are not nearly as overlooked.
    • Doofenshmirtz's unconventional education strategy, including syllabuses, is perplexing and infuriating to Aizawa who is used to a more strict and structured approach to teaching.
  • It's mentioned that Rin from the Sonic the Hedgehog fic series Echoes of Eternity was bullied for being the equivalent of Japanese-American, having a Japanese name, and having bentos for lunch. This isn't that unreasonable for someone who was a child in 1930s or 1940s.
  • Embers (Vathara) shows many cultural clashes between the Earth Kingdom, Water Tribes, Fire Nation, and Air Nomads. For one example the peaceful Air Nomads were so good and kind due to being brainwashed, and would exile those who disagreed from the temples. Chapter 28 offers this gem:
    Katara: Good people had good children. And evil people, well they didn't have them anymore, but that was what ice floes were for.
    Zuko: You push your enemies off ice floes when nobody's looking. We kill them in the arena where everyone can see. Who's sick?
    Katara: Everybody knows those you don't name have to die!
    Zuko: If someone gets killed in an Agni Kai? Believe me, everyone knows why they had it coming.
  • A number of people in Enough Rope ponder this idea in regards to Steve Rogers. The man might have been fairly progressive back during World War II, but over seventy years later, those same ideas of his range from outdated to condescending to outright racist.
  • The My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic and Castlevania crossover fanfic, Equestrylvania, uses this to highlight the differences in attitudes between Aeon's human allies, since they have been gathered from multiple periods through the timestream. Given that she hails from the 1930s, Charlotte Aulin sees no problem with using terms like "Negro tribes" or "colored people" with complete sincerity when referring to what she has been told of Equestria's zebras. Soma, who hails from the 2000s, isn't sure what unnerves him more; the fact she actually uses words he regards as highly racially insensitive, or the complete innocence with which she does so.
  • Caribou from Fall of Equestria are based on vikings, with all the attendant views on sex and violence this entails. Cows are just slightly smarter than your average fencepost and rely entirely on stags for basically everything, to the point that a cow without a master is as good as dead. When they meet ponies, who not only have autonomous females, but women of power, they can't handle it. They consider conquest and mass brainwashing a viable solution to males being at all okay with it. It's no wonder that the FoE setting has attracted such a virulent Hate Dom, usually having the caribou slaughtered wholesale.
  • Flag Flying High uses a lot of mileage from his protagonist — a 20th century English teenager — struggling with Jianghu's Imperial Chinese customs.
    • Harry's short hair was grounds for people believing he was a criminal or disowned by his relatives, and one of his first acts after deciding to better fit in is to gain long hair in order to signal that yes, he's honouring his parents.
    • His extreme protectiveness towards Mo Xuanyu and no less extreme attachment to his parents' mementos are considered praiseworthy, since he's acting as a filial young man. For this reason, Lan Wangji actually approves Harry dishing a Shovel Talk to him.
    • More than a few people are left flabbergasted by his firm intent to Marry for Love, as they consider the end goal of marriage to be children. Meaning that homosexuals and barren women are heavily discriminated against and seen as unattractive.
    • Lan Sizhui and Harry discuss symbology, with them comparing bridal traditions: if a Chinese bride is wearing red and gold for fertility, an European bride is dressed in white for purity.
    • Cultivators are in sheer awe of the English schooling system that produced an overeducated youth such as Harry — a high-school dropout, who benefitted from a really cheap and standardized cursus.
  • Flashman and the Throne of Swords:
    • Much like the original Flashman novels, Sir Harry Flashman has this in spades. He reflects all the social values of the 19th century English elite, both positive and negative. For instance, he takes care to censor mild profanity like "damn" and "bitch," while using racial epithets that today would be considered indefensible slurs in the same sentence.
    • Many of the British are disgusted at some of the norms of Westerosi society, such as child marriage, religious dogmatism, and the squalor of cities like King's Landing. As Flashman points out, some of those issues are present in British society too, but they simply turn a blind eye to it.
  • The Animorphs fanfic Ghost in the Shell is set in 2000, so Eva doesn't understand why her son Marco would be open about being bisexual.
  • In Gender Sleepy, Akane has no idea whatsoever of how she's supposed to react when she starts suspecting Ranma from being genderfluid. In 1987's Japan, the only possible reference is transvestites and they're mainly derided on TV for being overblown and fake, while Ranma is acting like a "real" girl.
  • While there isn't an outright Culture Clash, the differences in Cybertronian culture and Remnant culture do get lampshaded by Bumblebee when he's explaining his history to the Rose/Xiao Long family in A Girl and Her Bike. On Cybertron, salvaging and merging with the remains of your deceased loved ones/friends to make modifications to oneself (i.e, new weapon attachments) is seen as honoring them and keeping them alive in you. To the average person on Remnant, it comes across as really messed up, with Ruby even comparing it to if she made her scythe out of her mother's bones.
    Bumblebee: Remember, we're living technology, but we're still technology. A lot of our practices are going to be different from an organic being's practices by default.
  • A great deal of interpersonal conflict arises in The Golden Rule over Asgards more brutal society that in their minds, Humans Are Insects. The various human characters are shocked to learn that the violence prone Thor is actually rather soft by Asgardian standards.
  • Harbinger (Finmonster): Despite his kind nature and genuinely wanting to help his descendant in any way he can, the fic goes out of its way to show us that Alistair and Danny are from two very different eras. This is best shown when Alistair warns Danny against trusting Ember, believing her to be deceitful and untrustworthy solely because she's Irish (a view that was very common back when Alistair was alive). Danny, who was born in a way more progressive age, is shocked at his ancestor's casual discrimination.
  • Homophobia Isn't Real?: Many parts of human society are homophobic, while the Boilings Isles can’t conceive of the idea of homophobia.
  • In Hawkmoth Gets a Reference. André Glacier's sweetheart ice cream magic was created by his father, who believed that love is just a boy and girl together, which André finds out the hard way when his attempt to show his support to a young lesbian couple causes his cart to spew out waste ice, with the guilt that he can't help queer or polyamory couples leading him to be akumatized. Thankfully, Ladybug and Chat Noir's greater control of their powers allows them to reforge the sweetheart ice cream magic to be more progressive.
  • The Higurashi: When They Cry fanfic Higurashi: Broken Chains Arc shows that when you're in Japan in 1983, ordinary, mundane xenophobia and racism is still in effect even with the series of gruesome murders plaguing the town. Henry gets treated as the main suspect by the police; less to do with his insight about what is going on and more to do with the fact that he's British.
  • In the Heathers fanfic Hindsight, Heather Chander remembers when in kindergarten, she and Veronica had a bout of Puppy Love. Since their childhood was in the late 1970snote , this lead to her mother, who while not homophobic herself, warning her about the kind of discrimination she could face if she was openly gay.
  • Hivefled: To the readers, the Parental Incest is disturbing, but trolls don't have any concept of incest due to their Bizarre Alien Reproduction meaning that most trolls never meet their children. The trolls are more upset by the idea of moirails reproducing together, as they're supposed to be Platonic Life-Partners. Similarly, blood sacrifices are usually pretty normal in the cult of mirthful messiahs — the Grand Highblood is just breaking the rules by keeping his victims' ghosts. Later on, when the trolls meet the humans, values clash. The trolls are shocked that humans sleep on beds (a.k.a. "concupiscent couches", used only for sex by trolls), bury their dead (trolls think death is something to be faced, not hidden), have separate words for consensual sex and rape (among trolls rape is disapproved of but not actually illegal, victims are given little sympathy, and the word for it is actually the word for the consensual variety pronounced more patronisingly), and don't eat babies (troll grubs are born in such vast numbers that they'd strip the planet bare if significant numbers weren't eaten).
  • In In Strange Waters, a Girls und Panzer, fic, it's revealed that unlike in canon, in which middle and high schoolers study on schoolships to foster a sense of independence, the Canadian government found that too expensive, and Vimy Ridge Academy is thus on land, albeit in the middle of nowhere.
  • Iwatani Naofumi Bitchslayer:
    • Much like canon, slavery is legal in Melromarc, causing Naofumi to call out the nobility on acting like him owning a slave is some great crime when most of them own slaves too. While the other heroes try to insist that slavery is morally wrong, Naofumi counters that it's perfectly legal and acceptable in Melromarc.
    • On Earth, Motoyasu's habit of treating his companions as cheerleaders rather than adventurers would be rather patronizing. In Melromarc, it's extremely offensive and outright illegal. While not considered a particularly heinous crime, it's only Motoyasu's status as a Legendary Hero that keeps him out of legal trouble.
  • Justice League of Equestria: In Princess of Themyscira, Amazons actually wear clothes, unlike most ponies, and Diana is as disturbed at the possibility of Soarin' seeing her naked as most people in the real world would be. She also brings up this trope when taking her vow to uphold the laws of mortals when in their realm, bringing up how she might run into laws and customs that she feels are unjust.
  • In the Harvest Moon 64 fic Karen's Story, girls can get married in Flower Bud as young as 15. 17-year-old Karen's father thinks it's about time she got married.
  • A Little Off the Top has the whole Cang Qiong sect reacting to one of their peak lords getting his hair cut short in an ambush as if he has been Defiled Forever. The millenial Shen Yuan is overjoyed from not having to drag impractical long hair, but Confucean dogma insists that long hair is a symbol of honor and dignity so his colleagues refuse to see the matter as trivial.
  • Xander learns in Love you to the Moon and Back that Safira was fully aware of Robin Wood sleeping around with younger Slayers despite dating Faith and never mentioned it because she's from a part of Africa where a girl is considered an adult once she gets her first period and poly relationships are fairly common.
  • Sofia the First fanfic A Magical Evening: Downplayed. There are quite a lot of people that are perfectly accepting of same-sex relationships, including Sofia and Lucinda’s family, most of their friends, and most of the other kings and queens, as well as a portion of the public. However, it is made clear that there is a large portion of society and quite a few kingdoms that are not accepting of it, to the point where both Sofia and Lucinda and Hildegard and Clio have to keep their relationship secret, and when they are outed, they lose quite a few friends, some of which are of no fault of their own. In the end, the ideal outcome for both couples is being in a Marriage of Convenience and keeping their relationship secret to all but their closest, accepting friends and family.
  • This is essentially the point of Man of Dreams. In this story, the majority of people in the Naruto-verse cannot conceive of homosexuality, which is a major source of Gayngst for the main character. It's also shown in their attitudes towards women, particularly the surprise Mito always gets at her Action Girl tendencies.
    In short, nobody had ever heard of such a concept as “homosexuality.” Nobody had stopped and considered that perhaps there were people who exclusively fell in love with people of the same sex—another phrase that didn’t exist, “same sex.” “Same sex” and opposite sex,” who thought like that? You had men and you had women, and men loved women and women loved men, and the sky was blue and the sun was bright and water was wet. There were no alternatives, the world didn’t work that way.
  • The Moon's Flash Princess: Among the Aincrad survivors, the ones who went out of the City of Beginnings and tried to beat the game, or at least adapt to the new world, have been changed by the experience and started acquiring a different and more aggressive set of values, including finding personal strength more important. They also find weird the idea of no-contact Karate.
    • Silver Millennium Survivors largely see nothing wrong with homosexuality, as they have various means and methods that allows a homosexual couple to have children.
    • Aincrad's society is an armed society, meaning that nearly all of its adult, and many of its young adults, residents have immediate access to a weapon of some sort. A lot of its civilians are also militia trained. This stems from the fact that, while it always had a sizeable civilian population, it is has a lot of dangerous wildlife outside of the fortified towns that are within it.
    • While it is not made a major plot point, it is noted that Minako has Western Values when it comes to things like what the appropriate age of her partner should be. Since she is an adult, her partner has to be at least eighteen. Thus, any relationship with Lux, who is sixteen, will remain platonic until she is of age and they can start courting.
  • A relatively minor example of this comes up in The Naked Jedi as Sarza Zarazell- the only living member of the Nue Jedi, a group who seek to increase their bond with life and the Force through sexual pleasure by forsaking clothing- begins instructing her first Padwan, the Yuuzhan Vong Meelan Lah, in the ways of the Nue Jedi. While the Yuuzhan Vong no longer seek to deliberately inflict pain on themselves as part of their religion, Meelan Lah is unused to the idea of sex for pleasure rather than as a purely reproductive act, even if she is willing to learn in her role as Sarza's apprentice.
  • New Blood (artemisgirl): When Hermione suspects that a classmate is transgender and tries to help, all the resources available to her go by the "born in the wrong body" narrative that was mainstream in 1993. The author's notes make a point of explaining that this is how people viewed things at the time.
  • The New Retcons: When Elly went through a Teen Pregnancy with Claire, Jim and Marian’s reaction was to send her to a mother and baby home where she was coerced into giving her daughter up for adoption and then was told to not talk about it, which was seen as normal in the 1960’s. In addition, her grandmother called her unclean for it. this fuels much of her mental illness and poor relationships with her children.
    • Later, Elly admits that she never actually wanted children in the first place, but 1970’s social norms of Not Wanting Kids Is Weird made force herself to have them.
  • In The Night Unfurls, this is a logical consequence of a land vastly different from the modern world.
  • Taking place in late 1989, Our Time Is Now has this dissonance towards queer people. Despite her accepting nature, Jerrica feels awkward upon noticing that Danse and Video are in a lesbian relationship. In the follow-up fic, Danse's mother (who grew up in eastern Europe) disowns her daughter for being lesbian. Danse deals with a of gayngst before fully coming to terms with her sexuality.
  • Perception discusses Bajoran expectations regarding gender and sexual preferences: femininity is all about stoicism and self-confidence while masculinity is expressed through intelligence and enthusiasm. So to Kira Nerys, Worf's gayer than oil wrestling, the Vulcans' hat is being flamingly camp, and Julian Bashir is so much of a manly man he verges on Testosterone Poisoning. Jadzia is left crying from laughter after the explanation.
  • The Entity from The Power of Friendship (And This Gun I Found!) is an ageless entity over three thousand years old, and who is strongly implied to be Anubis. He grows extremely offended when the crime procedural that Solomon is watching features a coroner more concerned with discovering the source of the victim's death than treating the body with respect, and doesn't understand modern germ theory.
  • The Prayer Warriors have a set of values (it's acceptable to kill people who don't share your religion, who are homosexuals, or who are rape victims that didn't cry out loudly enough) that is quite different from many people, including their fellow Christians, to say the least. This trope is actually acknowledged in-story when Grover sees Benry dealing drugs to Rika and Books, and acknowledges that dealing drugs is (according to him) legal in Soviet Russia, but as it is illegal under US law, he has to kill Benry to enforce US law.
  • In A Professor and a Student:
    • Eastern regions like Kanto tend to have more rigid divides between Pokemon and humans, compared to Alola and even other regions in the east. Kukui repeatedly notes how much Ash defies the Kanto stereotype by being extremely close to his Pokemon. When the issue of Pikachu's Pokeball comes up, Ash notes that he usually has to explain it early on, but the Alolans don't notice anything odd about it.
    • In addition battle styles are noted to differ greatly between regions, with the more direct Hoenn vs the more combo preferring Sinnoh vs the blunt Kanto as an example.
    • In Alola Lillie, Kiawe and the other students of Professor Kukui's class are still minors while Ash, who's the same age as them, has been a legal adult for years in Kanto. Professor Kukui has to wrap his mind around that Ash, who is a child by his standards, doesn't need parental permission, signs his own legal documents and is used to simply leaving if he dislikes a situation.
  • Racer and the Geek brings this up frequently when mercenaries get involved. Because pony society is so non-confrontational and violence is extremely uncommon, firearms and those associated with them are almost all universally hated.
  • In the Hazbin Hotel fan comic Radio Pride, Alastor tries to keep his asexuality under wraps in part because it was considered "sexual dysfunction" when he was alive.
  • Rocketship Voyager is Star Trek: Voyager written In the Style of a 1950's sci-fi Pulp Magazine serial. Everybody Smokes and the eponymous rocketship uses radium, asbestos, and chlorofluorocarbon refrigerant. Spacefleet has a Prime Directive against miscegenation. Despite Voyager having a female captain, engineers and soldiers are Always Male. Women under thirty are referred to as "girls", African-Americans as "Negroes", B'Elanna Torres is a "half-caste" and Chakotay is a "Red Indian".
  • Second Bite of the Cherry makes use of the tongyangxi ("little daughter-in-law") practice with Wei Wing getting adopted as a future bride for one of the Gusu Lan Sect's young heirs, as the Lan elders have no problem adopting a preteen girl to groom her. Note that Chinese and Taiwanese people only started to consider it child abuse and banned it in the early fifties.
  • The Serpent’s Vow is unfolding in the early 2000s, with Stargate Command operating under the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy. It makes for tremendous awkwardness when they are introduced to the Goa'uld Queen Nephthys, who is for all matters and intents a trans man — with Sam Carter blatantly admitting how hard it is for her to wrap her head about a physically female person being more comfortable with a male identity.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist fanfic Son of the Desert:
    • In Ishvalan culture, no one uses someone's name without their permission and its considered a sign of friendliness or intimacy to be given someone's name. A batsheva, a seventh daughter of a seventh daughter is special in that everyone is allowed to call her by name, something she doesn't appreciate as it makes her like she doesn't belong to herself alone.
    • Trisha considers Hohenheim to be nameless considering the circumstance he got his name.
    • No one bats an eye when Edward fights a bear for spectacle and to feed his guests.
  • In A Song of Ice, Fire and Heart, it's not rare for boys to start having sex at twelve or thirteen years old in Westeros, meaning Ventus and Roxas are subject to Virgin-Shaming for not popping their cherry at fifteen years old.
  • The Soulmate Timeline:
    • One that is lampshaded despite all involved being from the same culture. Kyoko complains to Mami at one point that while she and the police who do look into Nagisa's homelife agree it is bad, it would only count as abusive in countries other than Japan. Being in Japan, they can't simply have Nagisa's mother be arrested like what happened with Yuma's mother, whose abuse passed the threshold that Japan considers child abuse. However because of how Nagisa's mother really doesn't care for her that much, nothing is stopping them from letting Nagisa just stay at Mami's place and avoid her, handling the issue within the limits of their culture's values.
    • The premise of the story itself creates a less mundane version of this, being a Soulmate AU Fic focusing mostly on a character whose original timeline was not this, Homura finds the way the world acts and behaves to often be strange and bizarre, and other characters find her confusion to things to be equally bizarre. Homura is the only character who even considers it a question if Soulmates are destined to fall in love, a thought that baffles and horrifies her Soulmates that she'd question if they would ever love her and seek to reassure her otherwise. Homura will also treat the entire concept as something unusual she'll use as an example of lampshading Arbitrary Skepticism akin to aliens and ghosts and being a Magical Girl, while Sayaka sees the entire thing as mundane and expected as the sky being blue and their teacher failing to keep a boyfriend.
  • Subverted in Stand Ins and Stunt Doubles when the the Avengers use marijuana to calm down the Hulk and Iron-Man mentions his surprise that Captain America isn't protesting on moral grounds. Cap replies that while he's not that into it, he's still enjoyed weed a few times.note 
  • SV Wishes: A major plot point with the modern Shen Yuan and the lower-class Luo Binghe in the Xianxia world of the high noble society they find themselves in.
    • Due to the multiple methods and means for people to have children, homosexuality is universally accepted since they would just have to pick a way to continue lineages. Heads of Households of any gender can have harems consisting of their preferred gender. If a Lord/Lady politically marries a spouse that is outside of their gender preferences, that is usually seen as the spouse's problem. So when Shang Qinghua's brother marries him to the lesbian Qi Qingqi, Shang Qinghua is screwed over and has to live with never being able to win Qi Qingqi's affections to improve his status of concubine, which sees him having most of his possessions sold off and having to be a glorified servant.
    • Yue Qingyuan is considered overly doting and generous for giving his spouse Shen Jiu/Shen Qingqiu a decade of monogamy before taking another spouse. Shen Qingqiu is seen as entitled for reacting badly to his demotion and spoiled for denying Yue Qingyuan a chance to expand his political influence with a more high-bred spouse. The modern Shen Yuan saw Shen Jiu as being completely reasonable for wanting a faithful husband and views Yue Qingyuan as an unfaithful asshole. The lower-class Luo Binghe sees Yue Qingyuan as The Oathbreaker of his marital vows abusing his power on his spouse who can’t fight back. The noble Liu Qingge thought it was strange that Yue Qingyuan would only have one spouse like a commoner instead of strengthening his household with the support of multiple spouses and concubines. Even when Liu Qingge loses faith in Yue Qingyuan, he doesn’t question the system and still believes polygamy as a given for high society.
    • Demons view bride-napping as an acceptable way to test enemy Lords' mettle by seeing how well a Lord and their spouse can protect themselves. It is viewed as a less bloody alternative to outright warfare.
    • Due to the fact that Everyone Is Bi and Gender Is No Object in this setting, the social and power dynamics are more strictly divided. The Lord/Lady/Head of the household is the head of house that must be obeyed without question. The spouses, concubines and younger family members are left to their lord/lady's mercy and discretion and the mercy of higher-ranking spouses.
    • Polygamy where a Lord/Lady marries multiple spouses and concubines is the normal state of affairs for people of high rank or wealth. Polyamory where all members of the marriage have intimate relationships with each other with their informed consent is not. The Lord/Lady can marry as many spouses or concubines they want without needing the permission of their current spouses, and he would ask their family without needing permission from the new person actually getting married to the Lord/Lady. The Lord/Lady is socially permitted to sleep with and take as many spouses as they want. If the spouses were to get romantically involved with each other without the Lord/Lady that would be considered adultery which is an execution-worthy offense. When Yue Qingyuan offers to allow his Second Husband Shen Qingqiu to have an affair with First Husband Liu Qingge, he is promising to not report them for adultery to have both of them executed. In the futile hope that Liu Qingge would be enough to convince Shen Qingqiu to not divorce him. It did not work.
    • Monogamy is something only poor people or commoners do. Yue Qingyuan is viewed as strange for only having one spouse for a decade like a commoner to the point the Emperor had Yue Qingyuan's spouse discredited and sabotaged to prevent him from providing inspiration to others not wanting to participate in polygamy. The Emperor of the Demon Realm, Luo Binghe is considered a huge romantic and deviant for only having one spouse and had to be very powerful to not be forced to take any more. Despite Mobei Jun's Single-Target Sexuality toward Shang Qinghua, he still had to marry other brides for his own vassals to not overthrow him, though he doesn't consummate those marriages and makes Shang Qinghua First Husband despite the opposition.
  • A fantasy example pops up in The Unlikely Confidant. After being abducted by Blue Diamond, Greg interacts with the Homeworld Gems. His individualist mindset and willingness to help hired help contrasts sharply with the Fantastic Caste System of Homeworld, where Gems are given and assigned specific roles. While confused at first, Blue Diamond finds she likes Greg's mindset.
  • Uzumaki Naruko: To the Victor, the Spoils V2: In canon, Naruto has something of a throwaway line near the Chunin Exams arc, near the first third of Episode 21 of the anime, that implies ninja are considered adults from the time they receive their forehead protectors. This fic treats this line with the seriousness it comes with, with many of the rookie genin actually having to do adult duties such as paying taxes while also learning about adult pleasures such as drinking and having sex despite being 12- to 13-years-old. As the meme goes "Old enough to kill; old enough to x."
  • In What Hath Joined Together, most ponies who espouse "the Order" do so to justify their jerkass behavior, but Twilight Sparkle's support comes due to her sheltered upbringing and lack of experience where ponies truly suffer from it. When she encounters a pony willing to die to marry someone outside his social class, it makes her more sympathetic as she struggles to understand why someone would defy the Order for something so unacceptable.
  • In Attack of the Clones, Anakin killing an entire village of Tusken Raiders is somewhere between a Start of Darkness and a Moral Event Horizon. In Wilhuff Tarkin, Hero of the Rebellion, it's shown that people living on Tattooine see it as a heroic deed as Tusken Raiders are universally xenophobic in the extreme and a significant threat to farmers or anyone living outside the few cities.
  • With Pearl and Ruby Glowing takes place in a Californian city during the mid-to-late 2010s; the values of the past and other countries are referenced, and they sometimes influenced the characters' abuse.
    • Yue was married off to Hahn by her father seventy years ago and suffered domestic abuse. During her youth, arranged marriages were common, and she didn't ask her father for help because spousal abuse wasn't taken seriously.
    • Glomgold is still nervous around black men after his time in a South African prison.
    • Azula attacked Kiyi, and since it was the mid-20th century at the time, Zuko had her lobotomized and committed, which he regrets now.
    • Jebbie was going to get her eyelids tucked for her twelfth birthday, which led to her getting shipped off to the Human Trafficking ring known as the Ark by her "doctor". Bigger eyes are valued in Asian countries, and in South Korea, getting plastic surgery done at a young age is common.
    • Bev Bighead slipped Rocko aphrodisiacs and tried to come onto him, but her husband Ed walked in and assumed Rocko was the one making the advances. This happened during the 90s when sexual assault wasn't really discussed, and the idea of a woman raping a man was seen as absurd. Similarly, Rachel Bighead, before realizing she was trans, had to deal with sexual harassment by her boss that gets ignored (although the boss eventually does get fired for his temper) and rumors of her being "gay".
    • Mulmangcho calls Gloria an anti-Japanese slur despite forming a friendship with her. South Korea still has negative views toward Japan.
    • Lots of antagonists have Knight Templar views of enforcing religious or legal restrictions, and the authors are careful to show that those beliefs are genuinely held even when their results are harmful, such as refusing to allow an abortion for an early-puberty-suffering eight-year-old.
    • Not all the Palace members agree with each other on politics, religion, or current events; they're especially divided over who's right in a particularly sensational local trial.
    • Some generally decent characters still spank their children. Dakota whips Cowlorado with a belt and thinks of it as normal discipline until he's called out.
    • In a meta sense, live-feeding carnivorous pets is played as a case of Bad People Abuse Animals even though it's accepted in America, because one of the writers is British and it's illegal there.
    • Certain aspects of the setting also fit this as real life moves faster than the fic does, so reference is made to homosexuality still being illegal in India when it was decriminalised in September 2018.
  • With This Ring:
    • Paul gets on the bad side of Lori Lemaris when he comments on the possibility of reversing the graphs of Atlantians to make them into Purebloods or baseline Humans.
    • In turn Lori clashes with Sephtian. Due to being a fish-graph Atlantian, she sees the mentioned comment as racism. Sephtian being part-of the genetically inbred and slowly dying Manta-graph Atlantian sees the possibility of changing or reversing his graph as a positive thing as his group suffers from many genetic diseases and are incapable of reproducing with anyone outside their group.
    • Teth Adom has to wrap his head around the ban of pork in the Islamic Kahndaq and how crippling horrible villains would be considered excessive force.
    • What was the act that proved to the wizard Shazam that Teth Adom was abusing his gifts to bring more power to himself and crossed the line? He was attempting to form the ancient equivalent of the Justice League! Teth Adom is extremely bitter about it as Captain Marvel's participation of the Justice League proves that he had the right idea. He notes that he and his contemporaries could have brought an age of Enlightenment and peace that no one had seen before, if it wasn't for the wizard's betrayal and his refusal to listen to Adom.
    • Kaldur, Garth and Tula are extremely offended when Kaldur's Earth -14 counterpart Lamprey addresses Aquaman as Arthur Curry instead of his Atlantian name. In Atlantis, people opposed to Aquaman's rule would call him by his land name to imply that he's not Atlantian.
  • Subverted in Miraculous Ladybug fanfics written by lord Martiya: being Italian, he explains Lila's refusal of Ladybug's apology in the episode "Volpina" with a cultural quirk that turned them into an insult (in Italy, apologizing for something done in presence of witnesses must be done in presence of the same witnesses. Doing otherwise is an insult, and neither Ladybug nor Lila knew that Adrien was there), but also points out that a seasoned traveler like Lila wouldn't expect a non-Italian to keep themselves to their particular code of honor, and got angry only because she mistook Ladybug for an Italian residing in Paris due the hamminess, body language and gestures she picked up from her half-Italian father and Italian grandmother.
  • A cycle of tales in the extended Discworld universe takes the hints in canon that there is such a thing as a Discworld "South Africa" to go alongside its "Australia" and "New Zealand", and amplifies all the accepted stereotypes of South African-ness. A.A. Pessimal accepts and stresses that The Apartheid Era is way in the past for modern South Africa — on this planet — but incorporates it into his version as a going concern. This is part of the package of stereotypes used in, er, "Rimwards Howondaland" alongside biltong, stroppy pugnacious people speaking "Afrikaans", safaris, the veldt, cross-eyed lions, and other little quirks seen in our representations of the land and its people. Most South African readers are accepting of this and get that this is used to highlight the absurdity of a crazy social system that must have a Discworld correspondence, especially when seen through the eyes of an emigrant trying to shake off her cultural conditioning and restructure her thought patterns when she arrives in Ankh-Morpork (and how do you apply apartheid in a multi-species world where skin color can be... well, it ceases to be just a black-and-white thing). There have been some interesting discussions in private correspondence, though, with Saffies who are indignant about their portrayal as bluff, thick, insensitive and loud. An "Israeli" character has been introduced in another tale. Reaction has been appreciative, although the author stresses he wants to explore the positive things about Israeli people through her, and how Israeli/"Jewish" vibes might fit on the Disc, and definitely to avoid the currently contentious issues. A single reference to recent contentious events in Gaza — in a footnote — drew flak from Israeli and pro-Israeli readers of Pessimal's work.
  • Since The Word of Your Body is set in The '90s, everyone says "transsexual", but nowadays "transgender" is the more accepted term.
  • Witching Hour: Being a Historical AU set in Medieval times, some sexist comments are made against Gaz as evidence that she must be a witch, such as the fact that she dresses in hunting leathers and prefers manly pursuits.

    Film — Animation 
  • Aladdin: Princess Jasmine sneaks out and inadvertently gives away a fruit to a beggar child without buying it first. Lacking money, the vendor would have chopped off her hand for stealing if Aladdin hadn't intervened and rescued her. This was Truth in Television for many societies of that era (and still is practiced in some modern countries).
  • In Barbie in the Pink Shoes, this is seen with Albrecht and Hilarion attempting to marry Kristyn/Giselle. When told she's 17, they say that just because she's a little old doesn't mean they can't marry.
  • In addition to the bullfighting example in The Book of Life, there's also the subtle disdain that some have about Maria's interest in books and her "unwomanly" attitudes.
  • Brave: Merida's main motivation is based on this trope. This is medieval Scotland, after all. It's played with somewhat in that she's acknowledged what's coming, the issue came from that thought being shoved in her face all the time.
    Merida: ...I'm just not ready...
  • Averted by most of the good adult characters in The Breadwinner. Razaq seems to be just doing what he has to in his mind to maintain order more than anything else and Nurallah intends to educate his daughters as fully as he can and wants Parvana to have a carefree childhood without worrying about being married off. Played straight with Fattema arranging a marriage between her own daughter, Soraya, and her cousin's son. Arranged marriages are pretty unheard of in modern Western cultures, between relatives especially.
  • Many of the Disney Princess characters are teenagers (with Snow White being the youngest at fourteen). During the times the stories were set, it was more acceptable to marry young. Most post-2000s princesses are at least eighteen if they are married.
  • The Electric Piper: Being set in the 1960s, there is lots of casual sexism early on in the film like comments how girls shouldn't focus on getting good grades and instead should worry about marrying a good man.
  • Incredibles 2: For the most part, the film's attitudes are completely modern, with the aesthetics of The '60s. However if you're looking for them...
    • When Jack-Jack is in his car seat, he's always facing forward, a no-no by modern safety standards.
    • When Violet and Dash are in the Incredibile, you can see that the super-powered sports car has no seat belts. Justified, since its intended driver was Nigh-Invulnerable and ease of exit or entry would be more vital than personal safety.
  • In the prequel Joseph: King of Dreams, Joseph knowing how to read and write is clearly shown as being an unusual but incredibly helpful skill he has. The movie also shows in pretty disturbing detail Joseph's being sold into slavery, with him at one point seeing how scarred the back of another slave is from being whipped.
  • In Loving Vincent, one woman in Auvers expresses disgust for the fact that Vincent van Gogh killed himself on a Sunday. Until recently, suicide was considered an act of cowardice and a mortal sin, so him doing it on the Lord's Day made it even worse in her eyes.
  • Mulan is just full of sexist songs like "A Girl Worth Fighting For" and "Honour to Us All", which fit in with how casually patriarchal ancient China was. They also include some odd ancient Chinese fetishes, like when one of the men mentions he wants a girl "paler than the moon." Also, when they're not going on about what women should be like, they're going on about how important it is to "Be a man!" in the "I'll Make a Man Out of You" song.
  • Pocahontas
    • The first movie has sympathetic characters blatantly say they're travelling to America to take all the resources, and they'll kill any Native Americans that try to stop them. They freely call the Natives "savages", which Pocahontas is understandably furious about when she first hears John say it.
    • The second has Ratcliffe exploiting this, inviting Pocahontas to a ball at the court where a bear-baiting is to happen. Considered appropriate public entertainment to the English, Pocahontas is horrified and calls everyone "barbarians" — getting locked in the Tower of London for it.
  • The Prince of Egypt:
    • Played up with the moral ambiguity of the plagues. In Biblical times, God killing the firstborn sons of your enemies was clearly a good thing. With a more modern eye and attention to characterization, it becomes a gut-wrenching event for both Moses and Rameses.
    • The film makes Moses' adopted father Seti go from being a stern but loving dad to being pretty creepy just by reminding us how he (and most of the Egyptians) saw the Israelites: "Oh my son, they were only slaves." This follows into Rameses' opinion on the Israelites, who views them the same way as every other member of his family.
    • Several facts from the religious texts the story originated from were changed/omitted for the movie to make the protagonists more sympathetic to a modern audience (e.g. in the movie, Moses killing a slave master is accidental, according to the religious texts Moses did it deliberately).
  • Hinted at in The Princess and the Frog. While a lot of Tiana's hardships come from her being poor, there are a good many implications that she also has to fight against prejudice for being black and female. One of the most noticeable is when the owners of a mill Tiana wants to buy casually dismiss her getting upset over being outbid, telling her "A woman of your... background, you're better off staying where you're at." While the exact meaning of the sentence is ambiguous enough that it could be interpreted a few ways, her reaction would tell anyone who knows about black rights at that time period what they were implying.
  • In Turning Red, as it's is set in 2002, there are some bits of twenty-first century culture that may be familiar to those who grew up in that era or who had Asian parents. Most of it comes from Ming's attitude:
    • Ming talks about how boy bands have trashy music that corrupt the youth and Abby mentions that her parents derided it as "stripper music". In the 2020s, boy bands no longer have that kind of stigmatization and are mostly just seen as a harmless pastime.
    • Mei draws a picture of a boy she has a crush on - and Ming instantly assumes and even blames the boy (Who didn't even know about this!) for apparently making a move on her or "Seducing" her.
    • As noted by director Domee Shi, Mei's elders tend to be stricter because they grew up in generations where they were expected to conform more than the increasing openness of Mei's time period.
  • An in-universe example played for comedy can be seen in the marriage of Jessica and Roger Rabbit in Who Framed Roger Rabbit. The two are an extremely mismatched pair; Jessica is an animated pin-up girl with an Impossible Hourglass Figure and a great deal of street smarts, whilst Roger is a hyperactive, bumbling, toony rabbit — sort of if Bugs Bunny was designed more like Mickey Mouse, then given a double-helping of comedic bad luck. Both humans and toons comment on the strangeness of the pairing, and that one partner clearly married up. Humans think that it's Roger... but toons think it's Jessica. Fridge Brilliance kicks in as to why the reactions are so different, and it boils down to another layer of this trope; toon culture revolves around comedy and being funny, and Jessica Rabbit? She's a living human sex symbol that works as a lounge singer — she pushes human buttons fine, thanks to her figure and her voice, but she literally does nothing for the standard toon, because there's nothing inherently funny about her. Roger, on the other hand, is a successful Hollywood comedian that can get most people laughing, so he's extremely attractive by toon standards.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • In the 2012 movie version of 21 Jump Street, undercover cop Jenko finds out the hard way that, in the age of Glee, environmentalism and the more pro-tolerance atmosphere of the Obama administration, his rather politically-incorrect alpha-male jock routine puts him a lot lower on the high school Popularity Food Chain than it did back in the mid-2000s. Instead, it's Schmidt, the idealistic, hipster-ish former high school nerd, whose personality and lifestyle are more in line with what's considered cool in the early 2010s.
  • Airplane!, being based on a 1950s-era film, plays a lot with how social conventions had changed by the late 1970s: Everybody in the plane wears formal attire (while the extras wear more casual clothing). Also, all the reporters wear fedoras and use bulky press cameras (displaced in the 60s by regular cameras). And Randy, the blonde stewardess, bemoans the fact she is 26 and has not married yet.
  • Airplane II: The Sequel has an openly-gay Happily Married couple as the first hint that "It's the future, baby!"
  • The townspeople in Federico Fellini's Amarcord are a barely literate, comically inept, short-tempered, base lot with few redeeming features between them. About half-way through the movie, the mayor of the town proudly declares every citizen a committed Fascist.
  • Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy is set in the 1970s and plays up the cultural dissonance of the age, including the rampant smoking and male chauvinism.
  • Austin Powers: The title character, a colorful, free-loving swinger from the 1960s finds himself to be a Fish out of Temporal Water in the more rugged, buttoned-down and cautious 1990s.
  • Back to the Future:
    • Back to the Future:
      • Marty realizes that the black busboy he is talking to in 1955 is Goldie Wilson, the town's mayor in 1985. When he says this, the café owner scoffs "A colored mayor! That'll be the day!"
      • One of the guys from Biff's gang of bullies calls one of the black band members a "spook", a dated racial slur.
    • Back to the Future Part II: A futuristic example occurs when, explaining a newspaper report a shocked Marty is reading about his son getting swiftly sentenced to a long prison term, the Doc nonchalantly points out that "the justice system works swiftly in the future now that they've abolished all lawyers!" (One need only think about the negative implications of that...)
    • Back to the Future Part III has Buford Tannen's self-proclaimed murder tally not counting Indians and Chinamen.
  • The 2019 Italian film Bangla revolves around an Italian-born Muslim teenager who falls in love with a caucasian Italian girl, and is worried about the culture clash that will result when he brings her to meet his family. When he takes the girl and two of her friends to one of his preferred restaurants so they can try some of his culture's local dishes, a cook eyes him throughout the meal and later warns him that "polygamy is frowned upon" in the Muslim culture, (wrongly) presuming that he is in a relationship with all of them. This is Played for Laughs — polygamy is also illegal in Italy.
  • Black Panther (2018) uses its African heroes and African-American villain to explore multiple perspectives on identity. Killmonger is ethnically half-Wakandan but he grew up in America, where due to the legacy of slavery black people have no ties to their ancestral homelands or people groups, leaving blackness as their only identity. As such, he regards all people of African descent around the world as part of a single people, with skin colour and their shared history of discrimination, exploitation, and oppression trumping any religious, cultural, political or ethnolinguistic differences. The Wakandans on the other hand have always held themselves apart from the rest of Africa and the wider world in general, so they see themselves as distinct from all other peoples, and thus do not feel any special kinship with the African diaspora or even black people in surrounding nations.
  • In The Black Phone, the movie takes place in 1978 and multiple instances that would have serious consequences in 2022 are treated as irrelevant or normal.
    • Gwen gets spanked on her bottom with a belt, exactly as you would expect a child to get disciplined in those days.
    • Robin beats another boy bloody on school grounds and is later seen calmly taping up his hands, apparently not even getting in trouble for the fight.
    • The two detectives spot obvious cocaine on Max's table and only condescendingly suggest he "clean up his mess" before his brother gets home.
    • Children are still allowed to walk home from school despite a Serial Killer having kidnapped several boys over the course of what seems to be mere months.
  • In Blast from the Past, the main character has been raised in isolation by parents who haven't seen the outside world in the past 35 years and have raised him according to early 60s social values. When he leaves the bunker to gather supplies, his lack of familiarity with the modern world leads to plenty of awkward situations. His reaction to seeing a black postwoman — the first African-American he's ever seen — is to exclaim with fully earnest and completely innocent sincerity "Oh my lucky stars! A Negro!" (fortunately for him, the lady is simply confused rather than offended).
  • Brooder in Bone Tomahawk proudly, and openly, brags to the others in the posse that he's "killed more Indians than anyone else here put together."
    • The film interestingly balances this with Politically Correct History, acknowledging the antiquated values of the time but also showing a remarkably progressive view of the American Old West. For example, Arthur is the town's doctor but his pretty wife Samantha is also a competent nurse and while she still needs to be escorted in the absence of her husband, nobody scoffs or complains at the idea of getting treatment from a woman when Arthur is unavailable; and it is also strongly implied that the Mayor's wife is the real authority in the town as Hunt always addresses Mrs. Porter whenever something needs to be done (she insists that he deliver it through her husband). There are two black residents, young lads who work as stablehands, but none of the white residents express racist sentiments against them on-screen and they react with sympathy and horror on discovering that one of the boys was butchered (though his employer is more concerned about the missing horses). The film also cleverly subverts The Savage Indian trope as well.
  • Borat and the sequel run off this trope. Sacha Baron Cohen plays a racist, misogynistic, anti-Semitic stranger who travels the United States to learn about its culture. In one scene, Borat is flabbergasted to learn that in the US, women have the right to say no to a man's advances.
  • In Blazing Saddles, Mel Brooks' deconstruction of the Western, all of the "good" townsfolk of Rock Ridge display violent racism toward black, Chinese and (in one scene especially) Irishnote  people. The process of gaining their trust is a fairly major plot point.
  • Byzantium: The Brethren's entire attitude towards women not being allowed to join their ranks, regardless of their merit. Clara's denied entry just over two centuries ago, which in and of itself was hardly a time for enlightened views on women in general. But then you realize the Brethen are strongly implied to be much, much older than that and time clearly hasn't shaken the trappings of countless centuries of sexism by the time Clara wants to join. The fact her low birth is also a strike against her falls squarely into this trope too.
  • A minor case in Captain America: The Winter Soldier: When Sam Wilson remarks that he must long for the good old days, Cap notes they had to boil all their food, polio was still rampant and there was no Internet, all problems the modern day world doesn't have to deal with. Nick Fury also remarks on the rampant racism his grandfather's generation experienced back in the day.
  • Cloud Atlas:
    • Ewing is very progressive for his time period, but still a product of his age. He's initially frightened that a Moriori stowaway will eat him.
    • Frobisher is antisemitic and looks down on the working classes, views disturbingly typical in the Victorian-era Europe that he grew up in.
    • Timothy Cavendish has the lingering racism and disgust for youth culture that you might expect a bitter old man to have in modern times.
    • In future Hawaii, Zachry has a child at a very young age with a girl he barely knows. This doesn't seem to be considered abnormal, probably because life expectancies are so short.
  • C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America runs on this, being a Mockumentary of US History in a world where the Confederacy won the Civil War, and slavery is practiced into the 1990s. In a clever twist, all but one of the rather racist commercials reflect real products and businesses.
  • Cuties:
    • It portrays France's rather loose attitudes towards sex and sexuality in general, even extending to minors, and the film criticizes them. There is a subversion in that the girls are openly booed by the crowd during the penultimate dance contest, including several Afro-French audiences who do not take kindly to it at all.
    • The scenes with Amy's family, portraying a very conservative Muslim family and the women preaching their roles as a woman, including modesty and subservience to men making Amy's eventual rebellion all the more shocking to them.
    • Amy's father marries a second wife in Senegal. Polygamy is illegal in France.
  • Dazed and Confused:
    • Hazing incoming freshmen on the last day of school was frowned upon in 1993 (as it still is today), and the movie seems to toy with the audience's modern day sensibilities whenever it's depicted. But in the film's 1976 setting, it's seen by the characters as just another traditional rite of passage.
    • Nutritional attitudes are also not quite where they are now:
    ...and remember to get plenty of calcium. It's important for pregnant women to get plenty of calcium. (Liquor store clerk, to pregnant customer buying booze and smokes.)
    He later tells her, "See you tomorrow night."
  • In Django Unchained, this is pretty frequent. For example, Calvin Candie pulls out the old Phrenology justification for why he thinks whites are superior.
  • Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story contains a scene where Bruce and his white girlfriend watch the film Breakfast at Tiffany's. The girlfriend clearly loves the movie, until she sees Bruce is appalled at the racist humor and use of Yellowface.
  • The 1987 Dragnet film contrasts the Detective Friday character, who is a throwback to The '50s, with his more modern new partner played by Tom Hanks.
  • The Duchess shows just what kind of horrors awaited a Spirited Young Lady ahead of her time. Georgiana's husband can freely take her children away at any time, because as a man he has the law on his side. Despite both parties having affairs, the Duke's is seen as justified because he's a man.
  • In Eve's Bayou, set in the 1960s, both Mozelle and Mattie cheat on their husbands, and in both cases, when the husbands found out, they were more angry with the men their wives slept with than the cheating wives themselves. Compare Roz's fury towards Louis when she can no longer deny that he sleeps around. This is based on the notion that All Women Are Lustful and men are supposed to have better control over themselves and respect another man's "territory."
  • Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore: In a mild example, it turns out that Credence's mother was sent off by her family due to being pregnant with him out of wedlock, explaining why his father wasn't aware of him (at least with any certainty). This was indeed a common response to such a situation at the time.
  • A source of humor in The Final Girls comes from the differences between the main characters and the 80s campers they find inside the movie. Particularly, the treatment of LGBT people (Chris, who was raised by a gay couple gets easily mad at one of the campers making homophobic comments) and technology (Vicki trying to explain to another camper how smartphones work).
  • In The Getting of Wisdom, some of the girls casually express anti-Semitic and racist remarks, including a few directed at half-Asian student Annie Johns, whom they nickname "Chinky". Laura at times expresses such remarks as well, although she comes across as more Innocently Insensitive than anything else, possibly as a consequence of her less well-off upbringing compared to the other students and/or peer pressure.
  • The Gods Must Be Crazy: When an African bushman as he experiences civilization for the first time, many of his thoughts reflect his unique perspective. On one occasion, he meets the film's leading lady, who happens to be the first white woman he's ever seen. He thinks she's the ugliest woman he's ever seen.
  • After the main character of Hacksaw Ridge goes on his first date with his future wife, he kisses her without consent. While it does show that even she found it creepy and disturbing, his actions show how differently they treated things like this back in the 1940s.
  • The original, non-musical version of Hairspray is both an affectionate tribute to the relatively underground dance culture of the early 1960s, but also takes some pretty ruthless jabs at the mainstream culture of the time. White housewives become shrieking wrecks at the moment they arrive in the black part of town, a therapist tries to hypnotize Penny out of liking Seaweed, and the heroes themselves become terrified when they accidentally stumble into a den of Beatniks ("let's get naked and smoke!"). The segregationists mostly act out of fear, paranoia, and vanity rather than any profound hatred, while another scene shows a white woman throwing fireworks into a crowd of peaceful protesters and starting a race riot just For the Evulz. Even Edna Turnblad is nervous about her daughter hanging out with "color people". And it still manages to be very upbeat.
  • Help!: It may seem disconcerting to see The Beatles (especially Lennon, although it's very obvious from his facial expression and tone of voice that he is mocking such attitudes) referring to "filthy Eastern ways" regarding their cultist pursuers, but all the deliberately stilted dialog in the movie is meant to invoke old movie and adventure novel cliches.
  • The Hour of the Pig: The film is highly realistic in showing the life of Renaissance-era Europeans. While it is extremely bizarre to us, they not only take seriously the idea that animals can commit crimes, but actually try them for this with full court proceedings, including appointed defense lawyers. Discrimination toward Jews and Moors is not only rampant but enshrined in the law, with a Jewish man noting his testimony isn't even admissible as evidence. In contrast to modern people who might have thought Christians in those days more prudish, they are quite casual about being nude at a bathhouse even with many members of the opposite sex around. They'll even just have sex with someone else right next door (and prostitution is fairly open, along with being entirely legal). Religion holds pride of place in social life, with all work stopping when Advent time begins, while both mores and laws stem from Christian beliefs (either for better or worse). Also, in contrast to popular conceptions, the village priest expresses skepticism of witchcraft (though inaccurate in portraying this as heretical). When it's set, witchcraft had only begun to even be accepted as real by the Church (sadly).
  • Hundra is set in a time of rampant sexual abuse and exploitation of women. Said women also have no problem doing the same to men when the tables are turned, particularly the title character who disdains weakness and initially intends to rape her love interest.
  • I Can't Think Straight: A significant plot point, as Tala's family is highly traditional. Though less so, Leyla's mother also gets quite upset at hearing she's a lesbian, saying it's sinful.
  • Ip Man doesn't shy from depicting Japanese brutality towards Chinese or Western racism.
  • Kung Fury: The film is set in the '80s and as such meant to invoke feeling like a movie from that, complete with a homophobic comment early on, with the police chief saying the mayor is up his ass "like a fag on Viagra."note 
  • Lady Macbeth:
    • Katherine clearly knows that their racial and social differences are why SHE will be believed rather than Sebastian (a poor white man) and Alice (who's black) when she blames everything on them.
    • More subtly, it's probably also why Alexander couldn't marry Teddy's mother and only provides for him from afar, since she was black.
  • Used in The Last Samurai, with a conversation between Algren and Katsumoto about Custer's Last Stand and to demonstrate the differences between how the Americans and the Japanese conduct war. Algren has a very low opinion of Custer, deriding him as an arrogant Leeroy Jenkins who needlessly got his men killed; Katsumoto, a Samurai traditionalist from a warrior culture that idealizes fearlessly facing death in the face of insurmountable odds, holds Custer in high regards.
  • Legend (2015): This was a time when being out of the closet was a major deal, and so it's more than likely that Ronnie's aggressive nature is a defense mechanism and a means of asserting his power in a heterosexual-dominated underworld, being a pretty openly gay man (he was actually bisexual, but the effect is the same).
  • Licorice Pizza
    • A white restaraunt owner making jokes in an offensively stereotypical "Asian" accent, to his actually Japanese wife (or rather, wives) on multiple occasions. The other characters present laugh and it's implied they're laughing at him but they're not calling him out.
    • Joel Wachs has to remain firmly closeted because even the suggestion that he's gay would be political suicide for his career ambitions.
    • Everybody Smokes, everywhere, all the time, and the only complaint anyone raises to 15-year-old Gary lighting up is that he's too much of a pussy to inhale without barfing.
    • At one point early in the movie a photographer causally slaps Alana in the butt, much to Alana's discomfort. A reminder of the casual sexual harassment behavior of the 70s.
    • Alana going to the audition agent office and her comments about the Jewish nose and some of the other comments about her Jewish faith that border on anti-semitic show how casual people could be about that stuff in the 70s.
  • Lili: It is a 1950 film, so it was fully acceptable a 16-years-old girl wooed by two men that must be more than 30. The slap Paul gives on Lili also wouldn't be taken as seriously. Fortunately, Paul immediately perceives his mistake and apologizes (hinting that he'll never do it again... probably), but Lili doesn't take it.
  • Lincoln:
    • Many of the characters display the usual racial prejudices of the time, and Thaddeus Stevens' belief in racial equality is frighteningly radical to his peers. It's especially hammered when Representative George Yeaman says he cannot endorse the 13th Amendment because it might lead to further reform. Even the Republicans balk alongside their Democratic counterparts as Yeaman floats the idea of woman's suffrage.
      Yeaman: What shall follow upon that? Universal enfranchisement? Votes for women?
    • Also, the shameless use of the Spoils System in order to secure the necessary votes. Short of actual bribery, the promising of patronage positions was legal, if not necessarily well-regarded, which is why Lincoln did not want to be identified with it. These tactics are now illegal and would be seen as blatant corruption in the modern day. Arguably, it was the assassination of another President by a disgruntled office-seeker that was largely responsible for the change, a change implemented in large part (appropriately enough) by George Pendleton, perhaps the closest thing Lincoln has to a Big Bad.
    • An anecdote is mentioned of a woman due to be convicted for murder even though the jury was reluctant to convict her, knowing she acted in self-defense. Since the law didn't make that allowance for women then, she's allowed to flee while everyone's back is turned and no one bothers to search for her.
    • Thaddeus Stevens has to hide his belief in racial equality so this fear doesn't kill the Amendment, plus the fact he's married in all but name to his black maid.
  • The Little Hours: "Jew" is used as an insult, and the sexual behavior of the characters (which, aside from the adultery, would now be largely considered if not innocuous then at least expected for modern Westerners) instead gets treated as gravely wrong, per authentic Catholic rules.
  • Little Women (2019) shows women not being expected to work and their property going automatically goes to their husbands. Meg also never gets to become an actress because of the stigma towards the profession of acting. Aunt March compares acting to prostitution.
  • In The Lone Ranger the treatment of American Indian peoples, including calling them savages, reflects the time period.
  • Love and Honor is ripe with this, but the kicker is when the (truly lovable) hero throws his (also very sweet) wife out the house for being raped. She comments in all earnestness: "At least he was kind enough not to cut off my head." Though later they reconcile, he never apologizes for it.
  • Mary Poppins takes place in the Edwardian Era - which includes things such as women not being allowed to vote (as well as the protests for suffrage), servants being more commonplace, casual classism, as well as the potentially senile Admiral Boom saying a word that is considered an outdated slur ("hottentots") today. (And arguably wasn't even known in The '60s when it was made).
  • Master and Commander:
    • The ship's first officer asking permission to bring live Galapagos tortoises on board as food stock. Of course, lots of people still eat tortoises and turtles, but no one in modern times thinks of Galapagos tortoises as food courses.
    • Prepubescent boys acting as officers, commanding men at least thrice their age by the simple benefit of coming from the upper class. Despite being 13, Blakeney commands sailors in battle (losing an arm at the start of the movie) and gets drunk with the other ship's officers.
    • At the end of the film, captain Aubrey comments that they need to get going before "God forbid, peace breaks out." To a modern eye, this seems so callous most people would blow it off a sarcastic joke. To someone like Jack Aubrey, a junior commander without significant political connections in the early 19th century, peace would mean being stuck on shore with half-pay and no prospects of either a ship command or promotion, and poverty being a very real threat if he didn't manage to stash away enough money from taking prizes before then.
  • mid90s focuses on the much more realistic 90's rather than the idealized version that is frequently portrayed in popular culture, and as a result, this happens quite a bit.
    • Stevie having an abusive older brother, and it really not being dealt with by the mother was very much how sibling abuse was like back in the 90's.
    • All of the main teenagers use homophobic, misogynistic, and racist language. While the racist language is used under the excuse of N-Word Privileges, the homophobia and misygonistic comments are portrayed as acceptable, instead of awful, which is what it was during the decade.
    • Stevie has a sexual encounter at a party with a girl much older than him. Stevie is 13, but everyone treats it as a great accomplishment. One night stands between people who had age differences between them, even if that person could not legally consent, were very common at parties in the 90's.
    • One of the teens faces absolutely no punishment, aside from what is implied to be a guilty conscience for driving drunk and high and nearly getting Stevie killed. This is very much how drunk driving was treated during the decade, as a minor crime, even if people died in a crash.
  • Mississippi Burning illustrates the Ku Klux Klan-dominated atmosphere of the namesake state in 1964, with the antagonists frequently making use of racial slurs and cross-burnings.
  • Seen a lot in Monsieur Vincent, in which a cleric in 17th century France becomes a crusader dedicated to helping the poor, which involves getting the pampered Idle Rich nobility to overcome their class prejudices and fork over money. Most prominent in the scene where the Ladies of Charity tell Vincent that he is asking for too much and they can't do any more. Vincent, who has had enough of their carping and criticism, puts the Doorstop Baby he just rescued on the table, and demands to know what they'll do about it. It turns out that the rich ladies will do nothing, as they are sickened and disgusted by the baby, regarding it as a product of sin, suggesting that the baby should die for that reason. Even the nuns have the same attitude, refusing to look Vincent in the face. An angry Vincent snarls that when God wanted someone to die for human sin, he sent his Son.
  • Zig-zagged in Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Hygiene is ignored and witchcraft is believed to exist but some characters criticize autocratic monarchy.
  • The Northman does not attempt to sanitize the commonplace behavior of the Vikings during the time period. Even Amleth, the supposed hero, participates in raiding settlements and enslaving their people with no obvious reservations.
  • Ophelia has several examples, due to being set in medieval Denmark.
    • Polonius thinks he's being a bad father because he allowed Ophelia to do as she pleased provided it wasn't harming her, such as learning to read, and he failed to arrange a marriage for her. He says he didn't know how to raise a girl, so he raised his daughter more or less the same as his son and took her opinions into account.
    • Ophelia doesn't receive a formal education alongside her brother and isn't allowed into the library because she's a girl (and lowborn at that). When Horatio invites her into the library, she points out she's not allowed before going in anyway. Gertrude also expresses surprise she can read at all and the other ladies don't seem to believe she can, even sniggering about it.
    • Mechtild was accused of witchcraft because her child — conceived out of wedlock — was stillborn and she's an expert on plants and poisons.
    • Ophelia wanting to Marry for Love and the fact her father did is considered a novelty.
    • Ophelia and other characters react as if she's gone skinny dipping when she's encountered swimming in an ankle-length shift.
    • Ophelia and Hamlet can't be together openly or marry as she's a commoner.
  • Paddington (2014): The Geographer's Guild expel Montgomery Clyde because he refused to bring home a "specimen" (i.e. the stuffed skin of a talking bear) from Peru. When Montgomery tries to protest that the bears were intelligent and civilized, the Guild blows him off, stating that any definition of "civilized" that does not involve typicaly British things like drinking tea, playing cricket and solving the Times crossword is broad enough to be meaningless.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl:
    • Anamaria's gender makes Gibbs wary of bringing her on the ship because of the belief that women bring bad luck, but eventually relents. It's historically accurate that sailors were wary of having women on board, and there were a few notable female pirates during the Golden Age of Piracy, including Anne Bonny and Mary Read. The fact that no one even considers it worth mentioning that she's black is also accurate, since pirates loved stealing slave vessels (they had a lot of room), and would happily take on competent sailors regardless of skin colour.
    • The list of Jack Sparrow's most egregious crimes includes "Impersonating a cleric of the Church of England". Today, most peope fail to understand what the big deal is, but at the time, the Church of England was responsible for a number of civic functions, including distributing poor relief and maintaining birth and death records. This, in turn, meant that impersonating a cleric was considered a form of what we would today call conspiracy to commit fraud and a variety of fraud-adjacent crimes.
  • A throwaway line in Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time mentions the Crown Prince having several wives.
  • The Princess:
    • The princess protests her father betrothing her to Julius, a man she's never even met, and says it's like she's a breeding sow (as he did this to get a male heir. Her father is disappointed, saying she's foolish and selfish for saying so, ordering her to do her duty for her family. It's the kind of retort an actual medieval king might well make when a princess makes this protest (as so many do in fantasy).
    • As some critics have pointed out, in spite of the film's overtly feminist message, it does little to challenge other power structures, such as hereditary monarchy, and no characters really question it.
  • Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves has the sadistic Sheriff of Nottingham insists on marrying Lady Marian in a proper ceremony before he forces himself on her and exercises his Marital Rape License.
  • The Sandlot features a scene where Ham and the leader of their rival team begin Volleying Insults that ends with Ham saying "You play ball like a GIRL!". Everyone treats this as the worst thing you can say to a guy. Of course, this is because the film takes place in 1962 before feminism and Title IX took off and most girls began participating in sports.
  • Sappho: Phil is more tolerant than most 1920s people would be of his wife cross-dressing and having sex with a woman. He still clearly isn't happy though (not just of her cheating, but acting too "masculine" in his view). Other people also disapprove when Sappho is publicly dressed as a man, though only mildly. Phil also very much dislikes her having a tattoo, saying only sailors and whores get them.
  • The Savages contains a scene where Wendy and Jon help organize a movie night at their ailing father's nursing home and play an old silent film that their father chooses to help the residents get reminded of the old days. The silent film features a scene with Blackface, which offends a black family watching, and Wendy and Jon, who hadn't known about it, can only look on in shame and embarrassment.
  • The Shape of Water has a character who is a closeted gay man, frequently visiting a pie shop because he has a crush on the owner. He tries making a pass at him. Cue him being ordered out of the shop because it's "a family place", while two black people are also denied service just because.
  • The Shop on Main Street is a Slovak film set in 1942, dealing with the deportation of the Jews from Slovakia (to their deaths in Nazi concentration camps). Except for one person who is connected to the Slovak resistance, none of the Christians in the town have any problem with the Jews being stripped of their property and sent away. The protagonist's wife is overjoyed when she finds out that he will be receiving a confiscated Jewish shop.
  • Played for Laughs in The Sisters Brothers, where it’s 1851 and stuff like toothbrushes or flushing toilets are treated as dazzling new innovations that only high-minded wealthy folks use.
  • Used as part of the Big Bad's backstory in Sky High (2005). Sue Tenny was a powerful Technopath, but in the 1970s this wasn't seen as a particularly impressive ability, and thus she got sorted into the Sidekick track and shunned. When she re-enrolled in Sky High in the present day as Gwen Grayson, the advances made in technology over the decades meant her powers could be used to their full potential, and thus she ended up as one of the most popular students in the Hero track.
  • Soylent Green has this Played for Drama. The harsh values of the world of 2022, from the tolerance of euthanasia, to police being allowed to steal food from murder victims to women being kept to live as prostitutes, are a sign of how desperate and hopeless society has become.
  • Space Cop: Ted Cooper is from the 1940s and unfrozen in the present day, so he often blithely expresses anachronistic values, saying things like, "Say, 'Ohn,' that's a chink name, isn't it?" and "I know women who are smarter than you!"
  • Spider-Man Trilogy: While an Averted Trope in the films themselves, aside from some mild homophobia and the characters having no sympathy for those with mental disorders in the first film. Raimiposting is a popular meme among the films involving exaggerating how much Values Dissonance there is in his films to the point where the films would've been considered beyond unacceptable even back in 2002.
  • Starship Troopers
    • On the surface, the film is a simple sci-fi action movie about Space Marines fighting giant alien bugs, however, it's pretty clear from the early scenes that The Federation is an aggressive, militaristic fascist society. None of the "heroes" think there is anything wrong with the way things are, are all enthusiastic soldiers of the regime and happily consume/star in bombastic state propaganda.
    • The last scene after the heroes capture the Brain Bug, when Neil Patrick Harris' character (wearing a hat and greatcoat ensemble not seen on a military officer since 1945) uses his telepathy to read its mind and exclaims "It's afraid!" In another sci-fi film, this would be a Wham Line and a basis for understanding and sympathy between the two species; what happens instead is every trooper present cheers in exaltation, at having such power over a defeated enemy.
  • Sylvie's Love: The bulk of the story is set in the early sixties when the Civil Rights Movement was still incipient, and so the attitudes of the time affect the characters.
    • Lacy's co-worker's wife implies she thinks Lacy landed a big account because he's black and the company is in trouble with the NAACP.
    • Sylvie comments to Kate that she didn't think she would ever see a female black TV producer. Her husband is less than enthused with the demands of her job.
    • The star of Sylvie's show, Lucy Wolper, is a classic midcentury housewife for the cameras but brash and funny off it. When Sylvie considers letting Lucy be herself onscreen, Kate scoffs that the censors will never allow it.
  • Teen Beach Movie is about a pair of teens from The New '10s getting transported into a 60's-made movie, so this trope is a given. Of particular note is the musical number "Like Me", in which Mack and Brady try (and fail) to convince the 60's teens that they should use more modern tactics to attract a potential lover.
  • The King's Speech: The first speech therapist promotes cigarettes to calm the nerves and soothe the throat.
  • Timeline, despite its poor reception, has one of the most accurate depictions of medieval values in modern fiction.
    • It's rather well summed up in the scene where the main party is escaping and the Scotsman standing a few feet from the guard, with an arrow pointed at his chest says something to the effect of "Stay quiet if you value your life." The guard picks up his sword and yells "Traitors!" running at him. Before promptly being shot in the chest.
    • Lord de Vannes's casual murder of François after forcing him to say "I am a spy" is seen as nothing more than a mild diversion for the English. After all, they're at war with the French, so anything is allowed, right?
  • Topsy-Turvy: William Gilbert has to deal with an actor who has a hissy fit over his costume which seems too "revealing," even though by modern audiences' eyes, it is demure. Furthermore, with Method Acting stars like Dustin Hoffman and Meryl Streep becoming well known and respected for the lengths they will go to be in character, this actor sounds childishly unprofessional.
  • True Grit is a western that takes place in the 1880s. The 2010 remake use a lot of this trope.
    • Played to a cringe-inducing and/or hilarious degree in a minor scene early on: when two White men and an American Indian are being hanged, both White men are allowed a Final Speech but the second the third guy opens his mouth he gets the hood shoved over his head and the platform is immediately released when he starts singing his death song.
    • Rooster waxing nostalgic about the American buffalo — which he helped hunt into near extinction.
      Rooster: Damn shame. I would give three dollars right now for a pickled buffalo tongue.
    • Mattie is a 14-year-old girl and LaBoeuf is a grown man. LaBoeuf explicitly shows attraction to Mattie, though she's uncomfortable with it.
    • Played with when Rooster frees and chases off a mule that two American Indian children were goading outside a trading post, then proceeds to repeatedly and literally kick them off of the porch to the ground. This has presumably more to do with their treatment of the mule than with their ethnic background, however.
  • Unforgiven is a film that sets out to de-romanticize the wild west. Racism against Englishmen, "Chinamen" and "injuns" is rampant, and prostitutes are seen as the scum of the earth - Skinny casually refers to the mutilated Delilah as "damaged property" and an exchange of goods is seen as acceptable punishment for carving the poor girl's face up with a knife.
  • Us briefly invokes this. The Santa Cruz boardwalk in 1986 has a funhouse with a tacky Native American theme, while in the present the building stays more-or-less exactly the same inside and out, but the native shaman above the door has been replaced with a much less controversial Merlin.
  • Warlock (1989): Redferne does not get why Kassandra, being a respectable woman, would "paint her face" (use makeup) since he's from the late 1600s when that was only something done by prostitutes.
  • Cult Classic horror film The Wicker Man (1973) relies heavily on this, first for humor, as the protagonist's staunch Christianity means he is horrified and baffled by the staunch Paganism of the village inhabitants and what this leads them to do — who are equally horrified and baffled by his religious beliefs and behaviors — and then for horror, when the Paganistic beliefs incite the villages to capture the protagonist and burn him to death in a wicker man as a Human Sacrifice so that their crops will grow.
  • Where the Truth Lies: The film is set in the 50's and 60's, with the plot hinging on the fact that being publicly known to have sex with a person of your own gender (or wanting this) would be a social death sentence along with prime fodder for blackmail.
  • Wonder Woman (2017): Downplayed, but it still comes up since it's set in WWI. Diana gets pretty quickly kicked out of a military summit in London for being a woman, and is treated condescendingly by Steve Trevor's superiors. Etta Candy offhandedly mentions the fact that women haven't been given the right to vote in the United Kingdom. Sameer was denied the chance to become an actor because of his skin color, and Chief mentions how his people, the Native Americans, were treated badly by white Americans not long before the start of World War I.
    • Wonder Woman 1984 continues the trend, being set during 1984; and the film does not shy away from depicting the workplace dynamics and Cold War international geopolitics of the era over the course of the story.
  • The World Unseen: The film takes place in South Africa in the 1950's, and does not gloss over the racism from that era, even among the Indian community, who look down on Amina because of her mixed ancestry. Same-sex relationships of any kind are prohibited and taboo.
  • X-Men: First Class: "This, gentlemen, is why the CIA is no place for a woman!"
  • Yves Saint Laurent: Saint Laurent himself had some progressive views beyond just being out and gay in 1950s France, such as using nonwhite models and taking inspiration from non-European cultures for his fashion. That said, the film shows one of his models and an otherwise sympathetic character being racist toward Japanese clients. Also, Yves and his family accept French colonialism as normal, and while Yves's family are polite to his long time partner, he is not treated as one of the family. Some of the multi-cultural fashions would be met with accusations of cultural appropriation in the 21st century, but they were Fair for Its Day.

    Let's Play 
  • Bravemule: This trope is used in its portrayal of the dwarf culture of Dwarf Fortress. The dwarves are violently isolationist, vicious, and militaristic, perceiving anything they are not familiar with as a threat and slaughtering it accordingly. This leads to the fort's downfall when Behem's deadfall trap in the trade depot causes the humans to go to war with Bravemule, and Traeme fully expects to be remembered as a hero for ordering Exi to breach the Underworld when the humans get the upper hand. They also consider octagons to be unholy.

  • In Goddess Creation System, modern girl Xiaxi finds herself in ancient China as a result of Plot and finds her values clashing with the horribly entitled nobility she has to serve. Case in point, she's given a 'trial run' to see how things working before starting her mission for real and is almost immediately executed and used as fertilizer because someone used her as material for a rude joke. She herself hadn't done anything.

  • Elvis Costello's Oliver's Army makes mention of "one more widow, one less white nigger", referring to occupying soldiers in Northern Ireland shooting at Catholic nationalists during The Troubles.
  • A controversial example comes in the form of Dire Straits's "Money For Nothing" which had a verse that repeatedly used the word "faggot". This caused a bit of an uproar in 1985 and led the band to be accused of homophobia. And while the radio version replaced it with "queenie" (which while still homophobic, didn't have as harsh connotations) the band itself cleared up that they did not endorse homophobia, they used the word to show just how much of an ignorant jerkass the narrator of the song was (already having hinted to have rather backwards views such as viewing people in the music industry as not having real jobs hence the song's title). That didn't stop the song from being de facto banned from Canadian radio in 2011 after a single listener complained over the uncensored version being played; however, the fact the band did make an alternate version available was one of the factors that led to the song being allowed back on Canadian radio after about nine months (though the original version is still the more common).
  • Randy Newman does this quite often, as his songs are usually first-person narratives, but he often chooses a narrator who has the very opinions that he is criticizing. Of special mention are "Sail Away", sang from the POV of a slaver convincing Africans to board his ship to America, and "Christmas in Cape Town", a song about Apartheid sung by a white racist.
  • X (US Band)'s "Los Angeles" has the unnamed lead character want to leave Los Angeles, and one reason is "She started to hate/Every nigger and Jew/Every Mexican that gave her a lotta shit/Every homosexual and the idle rich". The context is that she is having a midlife crisis ("All her toys wore out in black and her boys had too"), and is blaming others for her own problems, which has led her to believe she can escape them by moving to a rural area. This is Truth in Television and refers to something known as White Flight. The use of the epithets succeeded in attracting controversy for the song, though it makes more sense in the context that a lot of their songs were based on overheard conversations, as opposed to being the group's opinion.

  • The Thrilling Adventure Hour plays this up for humor in many of its settings:
    • It's especially noticeable in the "Jefferson Reid, Ace American" and "Amelia Earhart, Fearless Flyer" settings. They take place during World War II and are framed as Propaganda Pieces of valiant American heroes fighting the "dirty krauts."
    • In "Desdemona Hughes, Diva Detective", the title character was a star of the silent movie era whose fame faded with the rise of "talkies" and has the sensibilities of that period. For instance, she has no problem making jokes about blackface. "Desdomona" also plays it differently, as one episode features a man whose being outed as gay actually benefited his career, when something like that happening in the real 1940s would almost certainly have had a much different reaction.
    • One of the "sponsors" of the Thrilling Adventure Hour is Patriot Brand Cigarettes. The live shows feature actual advertisements of them between segments. Some of those segments, such as "Sparks Nevada, Marshal on Mars", are portrayed as radio plays intended for a child audience.
    • The older sensibilities of the various settings is also the main reason Frank and Sadie Doyle's constant drinking can be Played for Laughs.

    Print Media 
  • MAD's parody of Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves "Throbbin' Hood: Prince of Heaves" parodied both the movie and, at the end, this trope. When King Richard returns, he informs all of the loyal peasants and outlaws who've helped restore him to his throne that now they shall all live as they have always lived before (to much applause and cheering)... with no freedom of speech, no freedom of assembly, no freedom of religion, and absolutely no questioning the divine right of kings. The cheering stops and the suddenly enraged outlaws all throw things at Richard and tell him to "Get lost, baldy!"
  • A story in the National Lampoon ca. 1972 had a 30-ish guy waking up in his early 1950s childhood. He goes with it, figuring his adult knowledge will make schoolwork a breeze...then he blurts out that President Truman had kicked General MacArthur out of Korea, forgetting it hadn't happened yet. His teacher is horrified, but he continues his train of thought, going into a Vietnam-era rant about the futility of trying to police the world. The story's tagline was "If you knew then what you know now, boy, would you be in trouble..."
  • The Twisted Toyfare Theatre strip featuring the thawed out Silver Age Spider-Man took this trope to town, highlighting the fact that Silver Age Spidey's values and priorities are incredibly screwed up. As the normal Spider-Man says, "He guns downs bank robbers and punches dictators!" Also, the first thing he says after being unfrozen is "What the-?! There used to be a foreigner at the end of this fist."

    Puppet Shows 
  • In the puppet show 31 Minutos a secondary character is Tio Horacio, the animator of a children's program of the 70s, which among other things in his program said that children who were left-handed were abnormal and that they had to force them to use the right hand, even attaching the left hand to the back.

  • Bleak Expectations:
    • Played for Laughs with Sir Phillip Bin, who despite a lifetime's worth of bizarre (or flat-out impossible) experiences, is incredibly sexist, and thinks universal education is a strange and implausible suggestion.
    • In one episode, Ripely acts exactly like an upper-class Victorian woman would act towards the homeless, accusing them of being lazy, yelling at them that pull themselves together, and confiscating what little items they have in case it "undermines their self-respect."
  • Old Harry's Game plays with this sometimes, especially with historically "good" or "heroic" characters, almost all of whom are in hell for one reason or another. For example, Thomas Jefferson in his first appearance relates a funny anecdote about writing the Declaration of Independence, halfway through the line "We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal" his ink ran out, and he sent his slave to get more, seeing no contradiction in this. It's also implied that Jack the Ripper was Queen Victoria's nephew, and she ordered the Prime Minister to let him rampage freely, and shielded him from justice, only concerned with the shame the scandal would bring on the Royal Family, not the deaths of her subjects. It's all completely Played for Laughs, of course.


  • Seinfeld - "The Twin Towers": Jerry's uncle Leo says his cousin Jeffrey is a "hero" for assaulting a halal food vendor who didn't have a license, a nod to the spike in Islamophobic attacks in the days and weeks after 9/11.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Against the Dark Yogi has a karma system that enforces morals that are sometimes similar to modern Western ones ("do not lie") and sometimes not ("do not touch feces or dead bodies"). There are also mixtures, where the basic rules are modern ones but have odd exceptions and caveats ("do not kill, unless you've been really grievously wronged"; "do not steal, unless your station in life is really lowly and you otherwise risk starvation"). It's somewhat softened by the fact that player characters are assumed to be Chosen of Dharma, and thus it is always "within their dharma" to act heroically even if it would otherwise be outside their station of birth. For example, it would normally be outside the dharma of a slave or a woman to fight in battle, but for a Chosen fighting for justice is always within their dharma even if they are female or were born into the slave caste.
  • Castle Falkenstein: The Fae have their own standards that definitely don't jive with ours. Just as one example, Auberon, the closest thing the game has to a Big Good, wants to halt Prussian ascendancy and the spread of industrialism specifically to save France from the World Wars. Questions about the fate of Russia or Poland are met with blank incomprehension.
  • Exalted likes to play with this trope a lot in general, using Creation's fictional societies as thought experiments or deliberate juxtapositions to our own society. Specific examples:
    • The 1e sourcebook "Manacle and Coin" includes both an exhaustive listing of races generally considered "slave races" and a sidebar from the authors about how utterly WRONG such attitudes are.
    • The Scarlet Dynasty, which rules the Realm, has a eugenics program built around increasing the likelihood of Dragon-Blooded Exaltation. Justified since the Realm's Dragon-Blooded are the only Realm citizens capable of naturally wielding Essence, and thus are regarded as the Realm's most valuable resource.
    • The Delzahn have an odd attitude when it comes to sexuality and gender. On the one hand, anyone can "take the grey" and declare themselves "dereth," effectively becoming the opposite sex, starting at the time of their Rite of Passage. On the other hand, they have extremely strict gender norms, with no allowance for homosexuality or "abnormal" behavior. So if you're a gay man and want to be in a relationship with another man, either you or your partner must become dereth. If you're a woman and you want to fight or hunt for a living, or are a man and want to paint, you have to become dereth. And so on.
    • Lookshy is probably the closest that Creation has to a real-life liberal democracy, with an enforced ban on slavery, a degree of social mobility and some notion of natural human rights. It's still a military-run police state with Dragon-Blooded at the top, and readily engages in economic imperialism (as well as regular, military-backed imperialism).
  • F.A.T.A.L.: Half of all men are rapists (and receive less punishment for this than keeping a disorderly house), women are considered Defiled Forever for being raped and prostitution is accepted and common. The author flip-flops between saying it's "controversial humour" or that this applies to all of Europe for all of its history because of one book about prostitution in 1400's.
  • In Hackmaster, there is a system of Honor points, generally gained for heroic actions and lost for cowardly or heinous ones, which gives in-game benefits to characters who consistently act honorably. However, different character classes and alignments gain and lose honor for different things, so a Lawful Good shining knight type would gain honor for charity, defeating great foes in honest combat, and standing to fight even against overwhelming odds, while a Chaotic Neutral thief would gain points for successful robbery and fleeing from the aforementioned overwhelming opponent in order to poison or backstab them at a later date, and a Lawful Evil monster would be rewarded for taking slaves or torturing useful information out of someone. And in the module Little Keep on the Borderlands, non-humans would suffer discrimination while staying at the keep, especially races like half-orcs.
  • Legend of the Five Rings:
    • The code of Bushido draws no distinction between telling the truth and merely looking like you're telling the truth, and because it considers proper etiquette to be of the same importance as loyalty to your Clan and lord. This is fully intentional, in an effort to draw a "true" portrait of feudal Japanese culture rather than something a bit less alien.
    • On the flip side of the coin, many players may be offended when learning about Shourido, the dark "alternative" to Bushido that is advocated by agents of the Shadowlands. It's absolutely portrayed as an evil philosophy, but includes such "evil" ideas as learning for the sake of learning, seeking to become stronger and being a perfectionist. (In this case, mind, part of the point of Shourido is that it looks innocent on the surface, but inevitably draws its practitioners towards nasty extremes.)
    • Aside philosophical issues, the setting's strict caste system is no doubt an example of this trope. Peasants are considered "half-people" and Eta (untouchables who handle "dirty work" like waste management) aren't considered people at all. Caste is determined by birth, and aside from being reincarnated into a higher caste in another life, there are very few ways to change caste. While some of the clans in the game are Nice to the Waiter and endeavor to treat peasants with some dignity, they are, even by these people considered lesser. All this is, of course, profoundly uncomfortable to a western (particularly American) audience, where equality, or at least merit based social positioning is considered the norm.
  • A character in Pendragon is required to act like a Knight in Shining Armor, but that means following a code of chivalry that's decidedly old-fashioned. A knight is expected to be modest and humble, for example, but that's in relation to his fellow knights — the idea that he might not be better than a mere peasant is entirely unthinkable.
  • Well Rocket Age is set in 1938. Factor in alien cultures and things get real awkward real fast.
  • Sentinels of the Multiverse: Mr. Fixer started off life in comics as a hero named Black Fist, a funky kung-fu master who was an intentional attempt to mimic Blacksploitation characters of the era.
  • Victoriana RPG makes the Values Dissonance between the setting and the players the defining characteristic of the player-characters. Reasoning that some players would be uncomfortable playing accurate Victorian values unironically, the game encourages them to create characters whose beliefs are more in line with their own sensibilities, and hence profoundly revolutionary by 19th-Century standards.
  • Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay does not shy from adding real-life medieval sexism (if a somewhat watered-down version) to its sourcebook depicting the Medieval Stasis nation Bretonnia; women are second-class citizens without the ability to own property or manage their own affairs, and if female characters want to be adventurers they'll have to pretend to be men. The opening chapter lampshades this, stating that if you find it offensive you are at full liberty to not include it in your game and that "This is not a feature of Bretonnian society of which the author and Games Workshop approves" and furthermore that "The author and Black Library also does not approve of the arbitrary execution of peasants, fighting local wars over an insult, or worshiping the Ruinous Powers, all activities depicted herein. Just so we're clear."
    • Some of the Warhammer novels imply that homosexuality is regarded as an act of worshipping Slaanesh and thus punishable by burning at the stake in some parts of the world.
    • People with mental disorders are treated with revulsion and suspicion. If their condition invokes humour or pity then they are sometimes tolerated, but if not they are quickly driven away. Many people treat insanity as contagious and Witch Hunters will often put them to the flame or sword — which is ironic as many of them suffer paranoid delusions so severe that if they lived in our world then they would be institutionalized.
  • Warhammer 40,000 does this quite deliberately to help convey that it's a Crapsack Galaxy. Slavery, racism, murderous xenophobia, the glorification of ignorance and mindless zeal, religious fundamentalism — and that's just the humans! Appropriately this applies even to the more heroic characters, with Ciaphas Cainnote  (one of the most noble and just characters in the setting, even if he doesn't realise it) viewing "mutants" and anyone who disagrees with Imperial rule with the same scorn any loyal Imperial soldier would. Ironically by our standards, the Imperium seems to be racially and sexually equal, with the scorn applying only to Fantastic Racism. The only exceptions would be organizations in the Imperium that are explicitly patriarchal and matriarchal. The Imperium is also very culturally and religiously diverse, with few if any cultural standards enforced beyond "Don't muck about with aliens (unless you are a Rogue Trader) or Chaos, venerate the Emperor (in some way, no-one really cares how), pay tithes on time and in full, and don't get in the way of Imperial authorities when/if they roll onto your homeworld." Slavery is legal, as long as it's between humans. Humans being owned by aliens is a horrible, unforgivable sin, and the Imperium has mobilized entire army groups to punish alien civilizations for using human labor (or livestock) — humans enslaving aliens, on the other hand, is frowned upon since it would be allowing aliens to continue existing.
  • Wolsung: Steam Pulp Fantasy attempted this, to create a more "realistic" (in universe populated by fantasy races and with functional magic older than any of them) take on Victorian era and its society. The actual end result was creator's own politics bleeding into the game, in often very blunt and unsubtle ways, such as dumping its stand-ins for non-European peoples into a single category long associated with Always Chaotic Evil.
  • The The World of Darkness enforces values dissonance mechanically. Humans have a "humanity" rating with a hierarchy of sins forming a ten-point scale (e.g. 10 is thinking an unkind thought about someone who harms you, zero is committing genocide for entertainment, simple murder falls around 4 or so) with sins below your current rating potentially dropping the rating. The Humanity scale, used by humans, Prometheans and most vampires, is intended to encompass standard modern first-world morality, but other supernatural creatures get entirely different lists of sins:
    • Vampires can, under some circumstances, choose to reject mortal moral standards, and instead embrace a Path of Enlightenment. A Path is something which must be deliberately sought out, and embracing one is a long, painful and soul-shattering process. These Paths are exactly as alien as one would expect and while they may overlap with mortal morality they do so for vastly different reasons. A follower of the Path of Lilith, which espouses pain as the path to wisdom, would consider killing a human as immoral as a follower of Humanity would, but for the reason that dead humans can't feel pain, and would consider torturing a human to be laudable, since the pain so inflicted would bring the human closer to enlightenment. A follower of the Path of Caine would consider killing a human while feeding repugnant to the same level as a human would, say, nerve-gassing an orphanage, because such lack of self-control is anathema to those who seek to master the vampiric condition. Killing humans in other circumstances isn't even on the hierarchy, because humans are cattle and not worthy targets of vampiric moral consideration. The Path of the Beast is the other way around; killing a human while feeding is okay because predators killing prey is natural but killing a human you don't intend to eat is a sin because it's unnatural to kill for something other than survival.
    • Mages get wisdom, which includes the standard scale but adds in things related to your tendency to use your magic as a first resort. Minor sins include using magic to 'shortcut' daily tasks, major ones include intentionally invoking magical backlash.
    • Werewolves have essentially the same sins, but in an entirely different order. Simple rudeness can be an extremely severe sin if you're disrespecting a packmate or elder, theft isn't a sin at all, murder is a relatively mild one that's only severe if you're hunting for sport, and cannibalism features prominently with an array of fine distinctions.
    • Changelings mostly ditch the standard sins in favor of an extremely legalistic tangle of requirements to keep oaths explicitly stated. If you can rationalize your way around an oath so that you completely violate the intent while technically obeying the wording, that's a positive quality.
    • Geniuses in the fanmade Genius: The Transgression have a system representing their sense of attachment to humanity, with dings for cutting yourself off from other people either figuratively (spending a lot of time by yourself) or literally (heavy use of cybernetics) featuring prominently, as well as penalties for things that don't appear on the usual Karma Meter because people don't really have the capability to do so frequently (such as creating life in the laboratory).

  • 1776: Slavery is considered a normal and acceptable practice among many colonial Americans; while all three of the main characters have abolitionist leanings, their views are implied to not be the majority, and one of them is a slaveowner himself. Proslavery views aren't limited to Southerners either; Edward Rutledge accurately points out that the majority of people importing slaves from Africa are actually New Englanders.
  • The Club: There is an infamous level of casual violence discussed among the cast, particularly against women. Even knowing the story is a deliberate satire of macho club culture of the 1970s, many modern-day viewers find it very uncomfortable seeing the characters talking about punching their wives or 18-year-old strippers like it's nothing more than a minor character flaw.
  • Hamilton takes place in the late 1700s/early 1800s and some of the social trappings of the time couldn't be avoided. Slavery is still a thing, but most of the main characters are against it or indifferent at worst (even though this required a fair deal of artistic license; many of the characters in the play owned slaves in real life). Also, the play isn't shy about the limited opportunities for women, who couldn't vote ("It's 1800, ladies tell your husbands vote for Burr!") and had limited career options. The vivacious and opinionated Angelica Schuyler could have very well been an accomplished politician herself had she been born two centuries later, but during that time period, "[her] only job is to marry rich."
  • Heathers takes place in 1989, so obviously there's gonna be at least some of this, but the number "Dead Gay Son" qualifies as a mix of this and an in-universe case of Fair for Its Day; after JD (with Veronica's help) murders Jerk Jocks Kurt Kelley and Ram Sweeney, he makes their deaths look like a suicide pact that paints them as star-crossed gay lovers, when in reality, they were homophobic perverted dudebros who JD murdered because they spread a rumor about having a threesome with his girlfriend as revenge for not letting them date-rape her. Because of this, Kurt and Ram's formerly quite vehemently homophobic fathers decide to stand up for gay rights in their honor, which is fine and all...but the song they sing about it posthumously flanderizes Kurt and Ram into Camp Gay stereotypes — stating that they "weren't dirty, they just had flair", making references to ribbons, rhinestones, pearly necklaces and purses, deciding that Kurt and Ram must've been fans of the Village People and Judy Garland in life and just generally painting them as having extremely feminine qualities that they clearly didn't actually have when they were alive. Possibly justified, as the suicide note JD faked for Kurt and Ram painted them as having hid their "gay forbidden love" from a disapproving world, though the fact that the first assumptions their fathers make about them are "rhinestones, disco, pearly necklaces and Judy Garland" is still pretty telling.
  • Lizzie is set in 1892, so the antiquated social mores of the Victorian era are in full swing. For example, Alice is forced to keep her sexuality secret, because anyone finding out could lead to her relationships, prospects, and possibly her entire life being ruined. Bridget assumes that the murderer of the Bordens was "a lunatic, a foreigner, a beast."

    Visual Novels 
  • Analogue: A Hate Story, with its Scifi Counterpart Culture to Korea's Joseon Dynasty, uses Deliberate Values Dissonance for all its worth, even going so far as to give the player a Tsundere Spaceship Girl mouthpiece for the culture in question.
  • Desire & Decorum, being set in the early 1800s, has this. Clara, the main character, has to get married in order to become Countess of Edgewater. While there is a Gay Option, Clara is unable to marry women, due to the time period, and must enter a marriage of convenience with another man in order to secure her title instead. There is also much emphasis on Clara being a Proper Lady, and dialogue changes if Clara is not white. The man she (optionally) enters a marriage of convenience with is also gay, and has to hide his relationship with another man.
  • There's a mostly comedic example in Fate/hollow ataraxia with Lancer. Unlike the other Servants who are similarly temporally displaced from their origins, Lancer only superficially blends in. He's completely unable to understand why Shirou might have issue with Lancer trying to sleep with teenage girls, is ready to kill people that Shirou thinks are his friends at any time, and seems to feel that anything he can take from their actual owners is his.
    Shirou: Now I'm trying to explain the concept of sexual harassment to a hero of ancient times. This is more impossible than trying to explain the Internet to Tohsaka.
  • The Great Ace Attorney is set in the 19th century and has a Japanese main character interacting with the British, so of course there's going to be a lot of racism. In the first case (which is set in Japan), one British witness makes several remarks about the Japanese legal system being "inferior" and insists on speaking via interpreter even though she knows Japanese, because she refuses to dirty her tongue with such a vulgar language. The Judge is also quite upset when a woman enters the courtroom to deliver new evidence, since females are only allowed to enter if they are defendants or witnesses. Said woman, Susato Mikotoba, serves as the protagonist's assistant despite being more knowledgeable about the law than he is, and, in the second game, disguises herself as a man in order to defend her friend in court; compare how the main series had female prosecutors and defense attorneys.
    • Classism also plays a role for certain characters. Gina Lestrade, despite being a young girl, is seen as irredeemable by many characters simply because she is a pickpocket who is poor and orphaned. Sholmes explains to Ryunosuke that having a maid in Britain is considered essential to avoid being marked as lower class. John Garrieb has their spouse pretend to be a maid to keep up appearances of being middle class.
  • Higurashi: When They Cry (which is set in the year 1983) has a scene where the main characters talk about Global Warming and are excited about it happening, since they think it means summers will last longer. Such an attitude would be unthinkable in present times, where Climate Change is usually seen as something that must be stopped.
  • Misericorde takes place in an English monastery in the late 1400s, so the characters occasionally espouse opinions that don't jibe with 21st century sensibilities. Sister Hedwig, the protagonist, is utterly scandalized when she learns that one of the other nuns has been having a secret sexual relationship with a man. The nuns joke amongst themselves about the late Sister Catherine’s utter contempt for most non-English countries. And the Mother Superior goes on a homophobic rant against the other nuns once her frustration with their constant insubordination boils over, calling them all "selfish sodomites". The game acknowledges this right at the start with a Content Warning:
    This story is set in a monastery in the 1400s. Characters will say, do, and believe unpleasant things. Violence, xenophobia, racism, sexism, and other serious topics are part of this story.

    Web Animation 
  • Camp Camp: The Flower Scouts abide by very strict gender roles, and as such think that girls should only be concerned with looks and boys while guys should be rugged and manly. This goes so far, that they ran off the much less traditional Nikki for not conforming to their views, leading to Neil calling them "ignorant, fucking cunts" for this attitude.
  • Doris & Mary-Anne Are Breaking Out of Prison: Due to being set in 1922, Doris, a white woman, is imprisoned for just nine months for running over a baby, while Mary-Anne, a black woman, is sentenced for fifty years for slamming a door.
  • If Disney Cartoons Were Historically Accurate: The entire point of the song: contrasting a Disney fantasy setting with all the unsightly details about the Middle Ages that Disney chooses to leave out.
  • Meet the Millers: The show had political incorrectness to keep the show historically accurate. For example, there is blatant homophobia.
  • Strong Bad Email: Parodied when Strong Bad and the Cheat decide to take their "baby" (a zip-lok of banana pudding) to the King of Town's restaurant SteaKastle which hasn't been updated since the 70's featuring a high chair that's a bear trap and cigars on the kids menu. Strong Bad opts to go to a modern family day out, a vape shop that also sells hot fries.
  • Terrible Writing Advice:
    • "Grimdark" advocates that a Darker and Edgier setting should feature rampant sexism and racism, with the author responding by saying it's "historically accurate", even in Constructed Worlds.
    • "Isekai" suggests ignoring this when doing a Trapped in Another World story. Because the protagonist is in a new world, it seems likely that they would have to adjust to new cultural norms. However, exploring this only distracts from the two central pillars of an Isekai story, which are the harem and power fantasy.
  • Unbiased History: The premise can be summed up as this trope, Played for Laughs. The heroes are the Ancient Romans, with every bloody conquest of other nations, every discrimination based on gender, class, or religion, and every insane emperor is painted as glorious and righteous - no matter how batshit it can be.

  • Used intentionally in Amazoness The comic takes place in Ancient Greece, with a cast of Amazons.
    • Several characters are the slaves of other characters, with none of this being looked at oddly or negatively. In fact, the receiving of a girl's first slave is treated more like getting a new pet than anything else, with the mother telling the girls to "take care of them" and that it's a "big responsibility". However, in actual practice, the situation often seems to be "slavery" in name only. Given the general treatment of women during that time period, being a slave to an Amazon was probably a reasonably sweet deal.
    • Since it is set in an all-female society, lesbian relationships are the norm (usually between mistress/slave) and sex with men is considered a necessary duty for reproduction. A woman actually wanting to have sex with a man is considered a sexual deviant.
  • Rarely used in Arthur, King of Time and Space, where the artist takes the view that, since the Arthurian legends are ahistorical anyway, there's no reason the characters shouldn't have modern sensibilities, even in the baseline arc. It crops up sometimes though, such as the idea that betrothing a young girl to an older man isn't creepy unless it's Agravaine.
  • Comes up fairly frequently in Dominic Deegan; most of the non-human cultures have their own distinct values, such as the werewolves being unconcerned with nudity and valuing True Companions above all else, or the Orcs approaching magic much differently than humans (for one thing, they believe ice is sacred, which allows orcs to use ice to great effect against demonic forces) but some of the clans also having extremely misogynistic values. The fanbase, as with nearly everything else, is sharply divided on this; some people feel it is perfectly justified for non-human cultures to have distinct values, while the other side claims that orc culture is insane and Mookie is wrong for depicting them so.
  • In Draconia Chronicles, an inverse gender dynamic also inverts Men Are the Expendable Gender, and kids are apparently fair game. there is also no concept of "civilian" or "enemy noncombatant". POW's are only taken to inflict further indignities on them.
  • In this page Sil'lice from Drowtales illustrate the difference in in-world values, which is one of the reason that characters that come across as Badass, Axe-Crazy, or extremist to people from our world sometimes are portrayed in a positive light. This along with a world of Gray-and-Grey Morality leads to a lot of debate among the readers.
  • In Erfworld, units are compelled to serve leaders and causes by a loyalty mechanic. Parson Gotti, meanwhile, is from our world and has these strange notions of "free will", "choice", and "not taking sexual advantage of underlings". Egad. Made worse when Maggie, a spellcaster and therefore one of the few units who exercise some amount of free will, mocks him for being reluctant to take advantage of the situation.
  • Played for Laughs in Freefall. Sam is a scavenger, Florence is a pack predator. They have very different ways of interpreting things.
  • Girl Genius, set in a pseudo-Victorian Gaslamp Fantasy, isn't very extreme in this regard but does have some offhand references to arranged marriages and freaking out over showing skin.
    • An interesting In-Universe example of Cross Cultural Kerfuffle. When Agatha meets an African traveler named Embi, they discuss how both Europe and Africa see each other as exotic.
      Embi: I travel these savage lands in search of the rare and exotic!
      Agatha: Europe? Savage? Exotic? I never thought of us as uncivilized...
      Embi: You know, that's always what I used to say to visitors to my land!
  • El Goonish Shive: Occurs with Magus, who is from a parallel universe. In that universe, magic that permanently changes a person's sex is readily available, genuinely making one's sex a choice rather than something one is born with, so their views on sexism and gender roles are... different. It's noted that there is no stigma against transgender individuals or non-heterosexual romances in his world due to this magic being available. However, they fully embrace the idea that certain occupations are more suited for one sex over the other, and Magus looks down on a friend of his because she chose to pursue a career as a warrior while remaining female, saying that it's utterly absurd to make such a choice. Magus himself was born female, but changed his sex (and gender identity) upon choosing the path of a warrior, because "men make better fighters". This is rather sharply at odds with the modern Western ideal of no discrimination between the sexes regarding occupation and, despite them having no stigma against transgenderism as such, also at odds with the principle that your real gender is the one that you feel you are inside, since they think your gender should be the one that fits your job. Notably, Magus is convinced that Ellen shouldn't be a fighter and a woman, but thinks that means she shouldn't be a woman, rather than that she shouldn't be a fighter.
  • Gunnerkrigg Court: Stated in comic by one of the characters as being one of the (if not the) major reasons why the Court and the Woods do not currently get along.
  • Homestuck:
    • Trolls have a lot of Values Dissonance built into their society, but it's best illustrated with Tavros's interaction with Jade where he manipulates Becquerel into rerouting a bullet that would've killed Jade... to kill her grandfather instead. He sees this as a perfectly heroic act though, since in Troll society, adult members of their species don't raise young at all, and will generally mooch off of, or outright kill young trolls that they come across, and he thought that Becquerel was, in fact, Jade's guardian and Grandpa Harley to be an "intruder".
    • Terezi is confused at first as to why Dave was raised by Bro instead of a Guardian Lusus.
    • A Running Gag involves the trolls being shocked about the humans having buckets lying around: buckets are part of the trolls' reproduction process so seeing buckets all of a sudden would be akin to being flashed. Hilarity Ensues when John, convinced by Vriska that trolls consider cleaning supplies to be indecent, kicks an imp in the face for carrying a broom. Being culturally sensitive is really hard work.
    • Trolls are part of a Non-Heteronormative Society where Everyone Is Bi; even trolls who exclusively form romantic relationships with certain genders (such as Kanaya, who would be considered lesbian by human standards) are just regarded as having a strong preference. The idea of hetero- and homosexuality is not even a concept for them, to the point that, when John has to explain to Karkat that one major reason he can't return the latter's Foe Yay feelings for him is because he (John) is straight, Karkat is just utterly confused at the thought, asking "HOW IS THAT EVEN A THING?"
    • Trolls have four different forms of romance. While their "matespritship" (known as "red rom") is similar to the human concept of romantic love, they also have "kismesissitude" ("black rom"), which is romantic hate and is considered to be just as important and legitimate as a redrom. Humans, on the other hand, don't work that way in terms of having a stable, healthy relationship, which is the other reason John can't reciprocate Karkat's black feelings for him; he doesn't hate Karkat at all and simply isn't capable of romantic hate. Also, the trolls' two remaining forms of romance—"moirallegiance" and "auspisticism"—somewhat have equivalents for humans, especially the former, but would not be considered "romance" at all by human standards (rather, just very close platonic bonds).
    • Late in the comic, Terezi dated Dave while having Gamzee as her kismesis, but didn't tell Dave. When he found out, he dumped her because of this trope- he wasn't comfortable with the idea of quadrants and especially black rom, he didn't want to just play along with a culture he's not part of, and while by troll standards, having a matesprit and kismesis is normal and in fact an essential part of troll culture, Dave viewed it as cheating.
  • Comes up quite a bit in Joseph & Yusra given the fact that the main cast includes Jews, Muslims and Catholics, two of whom are soldiers on opposite sides of the Arab–Israeli Conflict. More often than not, it's Played for Laughs, though Yael and Yoseph dip into Your Terrorists Are Our Freedom Fighters.
  • Madame Outlaw: 1840s America is not portrayed as kind to the Irish-American Rosco, the Native American Heath, or the Black Sybil. The latter two are disparaged on a steamship and asked to go to the hall for people like them before Rosco and the Hispanic captain step in.
  • The Order of the Stick:
    • After the Order visits the Oracle and Durkon is informed he would return to his homeland posthumously, Roy finds him crying and moves to offer his condolences. However, it turns out that Durkon is actually crying tears of joy, elated at the notion that he would be buried with honour in his family's ancestral tomb. Roy still doesn't understand after this explanation why Durkon considers this to be good news, but is nonetheless happy that Durkon is happy.
    • Played for Laughs much later when Kandro is Eaten Alive while pulling a You Shall Not Pass! on a Death Worm. Haley and Blackwing are both horrified, while all his friends start cheering over the fact that he died an honorable death in battle rather than of old age and thus earned his place in Valhalla.
      Blackwing: ...Dwarves are weird.
  • In PepsiaPhobia, Phobia and Gastro own a slave, though they later try to set him free, which the rest of Ancient Greek society doesn't see it as big deal. Klepto, instead of getting set free, gets repossessed by the government because the law in which Phobia acquired him only applies to natural born Greek citizens, "... not women or barbarians and certainly not barbarian women", implying they don't see women as citizens.
  • Stand Still, Stay Silent is set in our world ninety years into a Zombie Apocalypse, causing a lot of this:
    • Having Child Soldiers is completely normal.
    • The main function of the army has switched from fighting other humans to fighting Plague Zombie monsters, causing a Gender Is No Object situation. However, this also means that not being The Immune bans people from serving on the frontlines.
    • Christianity is effectively a dead religion, with Norse pantheon worshipping being the new majority religion, by virtue of Iceland, by far the country with the largest number of survivors, being one of the countries following it. Minorities can be found in the form of Atheism and Finnish pantheon worshipping, and are apparently left to their own devices. Both religions acknowledge the other's gods to be real, and the only real point of contention with the atheists seems to be over the existence of magic (which has definitely come back, but only in theistic nations).
  • A Tale of Two Rulers: Discussed in-universe; when Ganondorf starts his first day as king of Hyrule by slaughtering two-thousand condemned criminals (specifically the rapists, murderers, and child-molesters) in a public gladiatorial arena, Zelda and Impa at first assume it's some kind of propaganda tactic to inspire fear/awe in the citizens; upon further research however, Zelda begins to suspect that he really did view this as the actions of a good king and ruler; Ganondorf is unique among the Triforce bearers for having perfect recall of all his Past-Life Memories, going back thousands of years, and has cobbled together a moral framework which includes some very old notions of justice and rulership that seem barbaric in modern times.
  • In TwoKinds, heroic-ish character Eric is a Keidran slave dealer. He's downright progressive in his treatment of Keidrans compared to most other human characters (he refuses to put "control spells" on his favorite slave, Kathrin, and is more than willing to deal with free Keidrans as equals), but he still sees his other two slaves, Mike and Evals, as little more than his property and refuses to sell them to Trace (who wants to free them). He later reveals that this is because he can't; Templar law not only forbids freeing your own Keidran slaves, but forbids selling them to someone you know is going to free them. Doing so results in prison for the humans and reenslavement for the Keidran. Eric eventually agrees to sell his slaves to Trace anyway.
  • Seen in Visseria (a pseudo-Victorian setting) when Alchione is getting a dressing-down by a higher-level bureaucrat, who mentions how ostentatious it is for a woman to be working on the force and how she should watch her behavior due to the unlikeliness of her possessing properly feminine skills.

  • CollegeHumor: In this sketch, the guys want to pull pranks like in the classic 80’s movies. One of the guys tries pointing out a lot of those pranks were basically assault battery and sexual assault and borderline rapes so they wouldn’t be a good idea to pull in the modern age.
  • SCP Foundation:

    Web Videos 
  • Ask Lovecraft: Much of the humor revolves around Lovecraft's outdated mores and sensibilities. For example, he passes out the first time he finds out a black man was elected President of the United States, and he apparently doesn't believe Italians have souls.
  • Epic Rap Battles of History: Frank Sinatra makes comments that are considered racist and homophobic by our standards, so you would never think of him to be the guy who integrated Las Vegas.
  • Needlem0use: This series pulls no punches in showcasing the rampant homophobia present in 1960's America, and Sarah expresses concern about her and her girlfriend Lily's safety to the point where she asks Luther to watch over them.
  • Tales from the SMP: Played for Laughs in the episode "The Village That Went Mad". Bad hits Quackity whenever the latter gets on his nerves, which — since they're playing husband and wife — is assumed to be Domestic Abuse and subsequently glossed over because "it was a different time".

    Western Animation 
  • In Bluey, when Bandit tells his daughters about his childhood during the 80s in the episode "Fairytale", Bandit's parents are shown in his flashbacks to have punished him and his brothers physically and are portrayed as acting emotionally aggressive. In the present day, they’re more calm. In addition, Bandit, Rad and Stripe were allowed to ride bikes unsupervised and without helmets despite being not too much older than Bluey, much to her and Bingo’s shock.
    Bluey: [after a flashback shows Nana about to physically punish Bandit] Geez, Nana was a bit mean!
    Bandit: Yeah, it was the 80's. Mums were allowed to be mean.
  • Bojack Horseman features BoJack's former friend and partner Herb getting blacklisted from his own series after being exposed as homosexual. The decade? The 1990s, where it was meant to be one of the more "progressive" decades but even a lot of staunch leftists and sexual libertines tended to mistreat homosexuals back then (albeit more in the "taunting and mocking" than "firing and blacklisting" sense, mind).
    • Season 4 gives BoJack's abusive mother a Freudian Excuse that just screams this trope. She was just a normal, happy little girl whose older brother was killed during the World War II and her mother went mad with grief. Her father, not knowing how to deal with woman's emotions and believing in the Hysterical Woman stereotype, tried to solve it with a lobotomy, resulting in the mother ending up as an empty, broken shell. He later burned Beatrice's books and favorite doll because she contracted scarlet fever (itself Values Dissonance due to disinfectants not existing at the time), and rather than explain it to her he obliquely threatened her by reminding her of what happened to her mother when she couldn't rein in her emotions.
      • This ties into why Beatrice fell for Butterscotch to begin with, as her father had sent her to college to get her MRS Degree (even calling it such), and she wound up getting a bachelor's degree instead of a bachelor, and connected with Butterscotch on a rebellious level.
    • Deconstructed with Beatrice in Season 4. As it turns out, Beatrice saw little wrong with giving Hollyhock amphetemines to bring down her weight. This leads to some heady moments near the end of the season, as is typical of the series.
  • Clone High: The original run ended with everyone being frozen. The 2023 revival has them thaw out 20 years later, and having to adapt to the times. Abe has not caught up though, as he is reprimanded for saying politically incorrect things like "spaz," "retard," and "gay" as an insult, and referencing sitting "Indian style."
  • The Dragon Prince does a fantastical version where elves and humans casually distrust one another - but it ends up being the source of a conflict in the fourth season. The Stern Sun Worshippers Sunfire Elves have a funerary tradition in which they must allow a fire to burn through the night, representing their defeased loved one(s) moving on in life. The humans who have built their current residence (A tent city) however are unfamiliar with this and the architect actually points out that this is a fire hazard. Janai is tasked with whether or not to carry on tradition, or to try and seek a path forward to promote better understanding between humans and Elves. Despite that Sunfire Elves fought side by side with humans at the end of the third season, things are not magically mended, and possibly may not even be so for awhile.
  • F is for Family is set in the early 1970s, and does not sugarcoat the drastic differences in culture between then and now, even as it plays them for laughs.
  • Family Guy:
    • The show does this in the episode "Peter's Progress" showing Peter's ancestor Griffin Peterson first settling in the New World.
      Griffin: We will have equal rights for all. Except blacks, Asians, Hispanics, Jews, gays, women, Muslims. Uhmm... Everybody who's not a white man. And I mean white-white, so no Italians, no Polish, just people from Ireland, England, and Scotland. But only certain parts of Scotland and Ireland. Just full-blooded whites. No, you know what? Not even whites. Nobody gets any rights. Ahhh...America!
    • In the episode "Stuck Together, Torn Apart", Joe's new automated surveillance van is shown to have a feature where it deploys two mechanical arms to arrest a perpetrator. After Peter tries it out, Cleveland tries to do the same, but once the van detects Cleveland is black, it marks him as a minority suspect, begins beating him with truncheons and plants a gun next to him.
    • In "I Dream of Jesus" the Griffins go to a 50s themed restaurant. When Cleveland tries to enter the employees blast him away with a hose, but he fondly declares that it takes him back.
  • Futurama had a weird case of this. To show that times have changed, there are a lot of cultural differences. Public nudity, polygamy, suicide, drug addiction (cf. the vending machines that sell crack cocaine and advertise it like a soda with words like "Delicious" and "Refreshing"), and cannibalism are all relatively normal while robosexuality (humans having romantic or sexual relationships with robots) and homosexual marriage are still taboo (cf. "A Taste of Freedom"'s scene where, after the Supreme Court ruled polygamy constitutional, Zoidberg's lawyer gets booed loudly after he says, "I can't wait to tell my husband!" Gay marriage is shown to be legal at least, as is marriage between ghosts and horses), and sewer mutants are considered inferior genetic scum that have to live underground by law.
  • A fantastic variation on Gargoyles. Since gargoyles raise their young communally and Goliath is a traditionalist, his attitudes about parenting and children are different from the humans around him. While his biological daughter Angela, who was raised by humans, finds the revelation of their relationship to be significant, for Goliath it is simply an obvious (she looks just like his ex-mate but with his coloration) and wholly unremarkable connection, and he becomes uncomfortable with Angela's focus on him as her only father (exacerbated by concern over what might happen should she encounter her biological mother). He comes to soften his stance when it is pointed out to him that he is Angela's only "rookery father" currently present, and that he matches the criteria of "father" by both human and gargoyle standards.
  • Hazbin Hotel:
    • Anchorwoman Katie Killjoy is openly homophobic. She died in 1992, some time before LGBT people were widely accepted in mainstream society.
    • Niffty died in the 1950s, and still holds to the traditionalist ideas about gender roles she had when she was alive.
  • One episode of Inside Job (2021) has the main characters travel to a town named Still Valley, where everyone thinks it's still The '80s thanks to a chemical compound (named "Nostalgia Max" to boot), that is used as a dumping ground for defective 80s products and unsold novelty items. The episode mocks the rampant consumerism, casual racism and lax attitude towards violence of that era's popular culture.
  • Justice League:
    • The episode "Legends" was created as an Affectionate Parody of and homage to The Golden Age of Comic Books, and features plot-lines and events taken whole-cloth from the earlier era. However, this does not always translate too well to the current age, and Hawkgirl is rather resistant when Black Siren asks for her help making cookies and letting "the men" talk. Later, John Stewart, the (black) Green Lantern, is not entirely sure how to react when he is told that he is "a credit to [his] people." Both statements were perfectly normal (even progressive) back in their proper age, when having black or female heroes at all was amazing, but cause discomfort when brought to modern people.
    • The time the group has to travel back to WWII to stop Vandal Savage from giving the Nazis a technological edge, although this is downplayed: several characters are blatantly shocked that Wonder Woman and Hawkgirl are, well, women. Not much is outright said about John Stewart's presence as an African American showing up in the middle of a White battalion, but that is mostly because they are in the middle of being nailed by an artillery barrage, and he is handy with a submachine gun.
  • King of the Hill at times ran on this, as the show was about an old-fashioned conservative family adjusting to a changing world in the Turn of the Millennium. One example in particular would be the episode "Revenge of the Lutefisk" in which everyone in Hank's community is skeptical about a new female minister (as Abrahamic religion teaches that men and women have different but complementary roles and responsibilities in society), but warm up to her quickly upon realizing they share common ground like enjoying sports. When she says that female church leaders typically don't last long down South, Hank thinks she means because of the temperature.
  • Shows up in an episode of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic, when Smolder (a dragon) tells a fairytale from their home culture about a young, poor dragoness who lived alone in the wilderness. She was taken in by the Dragon Lord, and repaid his kindness by stealing the bloodstone scepter, becoming Dragon Lord and having the kind Lord banished. Since dragon culture revolves around Might Makes Right, cunningly exploiting the kindness of another is seen as a virtue.
  • Onyx Equinox: Zigzagged. Part of the point of the series is how the Mesoamerican view on sacrifices wasn't that different from the modern one. However, realistic things these cultures liked that modern ones do not crop up from time to time, like slavery.
  • The Owl House: The revelation of who Emperor Belos really is goes a long way to explaining his actions. He's really Philip Wittebane, a human from the 17th century. That is to say during the height of the witch hunt hysteria. No wonder why he wants to exterminate all witches and demons of the Boiling Isles. This horrifies Luz who's from the 21st century where people have stopped hating or fearing magic, or even really believing that it exists outside of fantasy fiction, which alongside science fiction make up the vast majority of all popular media franchises ever made, "The Good Witch Azura" being just one example, and where genocide is reviled as a monstrous act best left in the annals of history.
  • The Simpsons: The series being what it is revels in showing how time periods before the modern day were not that great, how some things were not that acceptable by today’s standards or poke fun at how values may change in the future.
    • 1619-1901: A lot of the humor around Mr. Burns centers around his bizarrely ancient standards of moral judgement, which run the gamut from Victorian England dandy to slaveholding Confederate.
      Burns: (on Joe DiMaggio) It seems they've started letting ethnics into the big leagues.
    • 19th Century-1930’s: It's something of a Running Gag that anti-Irish sentiment was prevalent in Springfield at one point and still leaves traces in the present, which, naturally, has never stopped the town from getting roaringly drunk on St. Patrick's Day.
    • 1940’s: In "Stealing First Base", Bart asks Grandpa for help with his latest Girl of the Week, and Grandpa, working off 1940's-era logic, advises him to give her a "Shut Up" Kiss. When Bart kisses the girl out of nowhere, she begins screaming and he gets suspended for sexual assault.
      Marge: Why didn't you just tell him to bash her over the head with a club and drag her into a cave!
      Grandpa: Whoa, third base? He's a little young for that.
    • 1950 & 1960’s: In the episode "Three Men and a Comic Book", Bart sees an old Radioactive Man cartoon wherein the eponymous superhero is smoking.
      Radioactive Man: Ah, these Laramie cigarettes give me the steady nerves I need to combat evil.
      Fallout Boy: Gee willikers, Radioactive Man, wish I was old enough to smoke Laramie.
      Radioactive Man: Sorry, Fallout Boy, not until you're sixteen.
    • 1970’s: The episode "Homer Is Where The Art Isn't", we see Manacek, an stereotypical 1970s-era P.I. whose attitudes towards women (including knocking one out cold) are now seen as incredibly misogynistic (specially considering that the episode aired at a time #MeToo and women's lib were hot topics, whereas the former did not exist during production).
    • 1980’s: In "Bart Stops to Smell the Roosevelts", Superintendent Chalmers takes over educating Bart, and later other troubled boys. Chalmers hasn't taught since The '80s, and is disdainful of modern teaching practices. Although he does actually start to make progress with his students, he takes the boys on an unauthorised camping trip in the woods where Nelson is hurt. Chalmers thinks that the (admittedly minor) injuries are no big deal, and is stunned when he is fired.
    • 1990’s: Invoked but subverted in "Mr. Spritz Goes to Washington"; Krusty's rival for congress shows an old sketch where he interprets insensitive stereotypes in a UN meeting (A stereotypical Frenchman who stinks worse than his French cheese, a pothead Rastafarian from Jamaica and a San Francisco homosexual). Krusty tries to defend himself by saying that it was a different time... 1998.
    • 2000’s: In the episode, "The Last Temptation of Krust", Krusty performs at a comedy festival, but not really having created any new material in years, his old bits are incredibly outdated, especially an extremely cringeworthy Asian stereotype. He almost retires after the negative responses.
    • 2010’s: In the episode "Lisa's Wedding", which takes place fifteen years into the future, this quote from Marge shows what type of content will be acceptable to show on broadcast TV, and doubles as Biting-the-Hand Humor:
      [Lying in bed with Homer while watching TV]
      Marge: Ugh! The Fox Network became a hardcore porn channel so gradually, I didn't even notice.
  • Star Trek: Lower Decks
    • "Parth Ferengi's Heart Place" uses a trip to Ferengenar to dive deeper into Ferengi dissonance with Federation values. Boimler is ensnared by Ferengi television programming, which includes shows about cops who are also landlords; he finds the concept of a "com-mer-cial" completely alien and can't believe that they can just openly lie to you about what a product does. Meanwhile, Mariner passes by a memorial to those lost in the Dominion War... which focuses mainly on their lost profit value.
    • In "The Inner Fight", after Mariner reveals to the Klingon Ma'ah why she's been on a self-destructive streak, she reveals that she participated in the Dominion War. Ma'ah is envious of this — the Dominion sent many Klingon warriors to Sto-vo-kor and it would have been a glorious war to participate in. However, Mariner believes the entire thing was horrible and he shouldn't want to be part of it.
    • In "Old Friends, New Planets", the hyper-capitalistic Ferengi are revealed to have put a Cash Gate on a weapon of mass destruction to shut it off. This winds up killing Nick Locarno when he seemingly manages to disarm it, only to be Killed Mid-Sentence.
  • Time Pervs (a recurring sketch on the short-lived sketch show VH1 Ill-ustrated) is about Bill Clinton, Pee-Wee Herman and Larry Flint using a time-traveling wheelchair to perv out on hot women in history. They decide to see Helen of Troy in person, expecting an Hourglass Hottie only to find she's practically Mrs. Turnblad, yet a guard lovingly talks of the same features that creep them out and are aghast that they're actually turned off. Truth in Television considering how the ancient Greek standards of beauty wildly differs from the American standards of beauty.
  • Transformers: Animated: The Autobots don't get why Fanzone sees something wrong with teaching Sari to fight. It's a part of every protoform's elemental programming.
  • Occurs several times in The Venture Bros. in flashbacks and appearances of the old Team Venture: a giant in the team is called Humongoloid; Col. Gentleman refers to the Japanese Kano's "racial handicap"; and of course:
    Announcer: It's The Rusty Venture Show! Brought to you by Smoking!
  • One episode of X-Men: The Animated Series has the team travel back in time to The '60s to save Professor X's life. When Storm isn't allowed in a whites-only bar, she finds it quaint that for once she's being discriminated for her skin color as opposed to her powers.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Intentional Values Dissonance


"Dishonorable To Grow Old?"

The Spartan customs that value Old Soldiers for their bravery and ferocity to return from battle that it's said the only way they'd die is from old age, isn't at all valued in The Norse Realms who think only the Young are worthy of an honorable death.

How well does it match the trope?

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Example of:

Main / DeliberateValuesDissonance

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