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Your Tradition Is Not Mine

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A character's situation where either a White Sheep or the Black Sheep of the family or race does not intend to uphold their traditions, and simply wants to start a new life for themselves or form their own traditions. Their parents and friends will scorn them for this, and try to get them to change their mind for the better.

A White Sheep will have a perfect reason why he or she does not want to partake in any of their family traditions, whether they are assassins, thieves, or so forth and in some cases, wants some normalcy in their life. A Black Sheep is likely to not be a religious devotee, a teen rebel, and feels they don't fit in, or in a worse case scenario, pulls a Face–Heel Turn. If a character wants to romance someone of a different race, the relationship in question with someone their family or race utterly despise will cause a lot of problems. This is very common with royalty the prince or princess who will definitely have issues with their higher-authority parent. And sometimes, those parents will force them to go along against their will or cut them off.


It can be race-related, with a My Species Doth Protest Too Much, as a character who originally belonged to a Proud Warrior Race dislikes the Blood Knight tendencies of their brethren.

This is also, tragically, one of the primary reasons an evil apprentice will have this viewpoint when they question the old traditions of their old masters, as it conflicts their own. Or if the pupil is a good guy, but finds the traditions of his master's laws as outdated. In any case, it can cause a case of Deliberate Values Dissonance.

This is often the source of drama and the conflict surrounding the characters that know them.



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    Anime & Manga 
  • Yosho Masaki Jurai (also known as Katsuhito Masaki) of Tenchi Muyo! is half-human and half-Jurain, and is the son of the king of Jurai and his human mother Funaho. Yosho is the crown prince of Jurai, and was to take the throne. The Jurain nobles took issues with this, and so he was bethrothed with his half-sister Ayeka. However he had no intention of doing so, and used Ryoko's attack as an excuse to leave. Further complications reveal that he was in a relationship with Airi, who was a native of Airai, and pregnant with his child. Eventually, he used Ryoko's attack on Jurai as an excuse to disappear off the radar with few people knowing where he is.
  • Dragon Ball:
    • At the beginning of Dragon Ball Z, Son Goku finds out he belongs to a race of warrior Blood Knights called Saiyans. He also found out he was sent to Earth to destroy all life on it. The reason he didn't was because of a head injury as a baby. Initially he rejected his heritage as a Saiyan, but eventually embraces it during the Frieza Saga facing the titular Big Bad.
    • In Dragon Ball Z's sequel Dragon Ball Super, Zamasu is an apprentice Supreme Kai who would take his master's place as the Supreme Kai of Universe 10. However his black and white views on mortals caused him to see the beings he's supposed to protect as unworthy of the gods' knowledge. Meeting Goku and going to Planet Babari only solidified his bias, and concludes that all mortals need to be wiped out for universal peace. To that end, Zamasu tries to murder Gowasu and steal his Time Ring. When Gowasu learns this, he is not pleased. The Zamasu who would become Black not only killed his master for the earrings, but also killed Future Gowasu.
  • Raoh of Fist of the North Star is the eldest brother of the protagonist Kenshiro, along with Toki, his biological brother Toki and and other adopted brother Jagi. After Kenshiro is named the 64th successor of Hokuto Shinken, a legendary martial art of assassination, Raoh chooses to defies those laws, which requires those who are not named successor to have their fists sealed or memories of it erased, for his own ends and ambition. Both Toki and Kenshiro, who both take the traditions of Hokuto Shinken very seriously, and would fight him in the course of the manga.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Star Wars: Anakin Skywalker has this issue in the prequel trilogy since, as a Jedi, he cannot be in a relationship with the love of his life, Padmé Amidala. In Revenge of the Sith he completely solidifies his Face–Heel Turn after being convinced by the Big Bad that turning to the Dark Side would save his wife from dying, which he'd been having visions of.

  • In the Warrior Cats prequel Tallstar's Revenge, Tallpaw's family has always been tunnelers, and he knows that his father is eager to train him and patrol with him. Tallpaw dreams of being a moor-runner, however - which Heatherstar senses, and assigns him as - but Tallpaw can't help but feeling bad for disappointing his parents.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The Mandalorian: Inversion, when the titular character meets Mandalorians who aren't part of his fundamentalist tribe in "The Heiress" it turns out that they don't follow the tradition of keeping their helmets on in the presence of anyone outside their immediate family. They ridicule him in fact.
  • In the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Redemption, Part II", Chancellor Gowron offers Worf the right to kill the (teenaged) son of the man responsible for disgracing House Mogh. Worf refuses, saying "It is not my way."

    Myths & Religion 
  • In The Book of Mormon, there are far more examples than you'd expect.
    • In 1st Nephi, Nephi's brothers, Laman and Lamuel, are rebellious sons of their prophet father Lehi. They are willing to kill Nephi just because he follows his father's visions. When they went to the Americas, they try to kill him. Nephi at that point was warned ahead of time and formed his own nation, while Laman and Lamuel become the Lamanites who abandoned everything for which their father stood.
    • In Mosiah, we have Alma and the four sons of Mosiah. Alma openly opposes the church his father worships, and convinces his friends, who are the sons of King Mosiah, to join him. However he eventually subverts this after going into a coma and had a Heel–Face Turn.

    Puppet Shows 
  • There are many episodes of Dinosaurs where Robbie eschewed traditions like hunting, Howling Day and leaving Grandma to die.

  • Fiddler on the Roof is a Maligned Mixed Marriage example. Tevye's daughter Chava wanted to marry a non-Jew out of love, but he was highly against it. The drama eventually resulted in him disowning her as a result.

    Video Games 
  • This is the backstory of Genji of Overwatch. Genji enjoyed his life in Hanamura with his brother Hanzo, but the Yakuza forced them into a situation where one of them had to be the family successor. Genji was heavily injured and was rescued and cyberized by Overwatch agents. He eventually decides to take down his family's criminal activities. Hanzo, while involved, is deeply affected by what happened to his brother. When the two face off again, Genji reveals himself and hopes Hanzo would change his path.

    Visual Novels 
  • In the Nasuverse, the Mage Association rules that Mage families can only have one heir in each generation that will inherit the family's Magic Crest, the source of the family's magic abilities. The parent must teach their child about magic as each family has a different type of magic unique to them and there are no Wizarding Schools for children (just a research university). In Fate/stay night, Rin is the heir of the wealthy and influential Tohsaka family. Due to being a haughty prodigy and wanting to live up to her family name in place of her late father Tokiomi, she has high hopes of being a successful mage. At the beginning of the story, she chooses to help Shirou in the Holy Grail War because she feels guilty over getting him involved in this mess even though the rules are to kill any muggle witnesses (though she doesn't give him courtesy until a little later in the Unlimited Blade Works route), which is the first major decision by Rin to step away from Mage traditions. Later, when Shirou reveals to her that his adopted father, Kiritsugu, only taught him the basics and not any spells, Rin admonishes Kiritsugu's decision because it goes against Mage expectations. This is foreshadowing Heaven's Feel. When Rin got deathly ill as an infant, her parents had another child as a back-up heir, who would be Sakura. When Rin ended up surviving, Tokiomi gave up Sakura to the Tohsaka's old allies, the Matou family, as both Rin and Sakura were both very magic-potent, which could risk getting unwanted attention from magical creatures and the Mage Association, he didn't want Rin and Sakura to have to fight each other for the Magic Crest, and he didn't want Sakura's magic potential to go to waste if they were to keep her but not teach her magic. Rin spends the rest of Heaven's Feel being distant and hostile to Sakura in an attempt to follow the rule that the two aren't supposed to associate anymore, and even calls her weak for giving in to the Matou's abuse. It culminates in the two attempting to kill each other in the climax, only for Rin to falter and admit to Sakura that she still loves her and that she would've broken the rules to save her if she had known about Sakura's situation earlier.


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