Follow TV Tropes


Playing With / Succession Crisis

Go To

Basic Trope: A monarch dies, and it's unclear who will be their successor.

  • Straight: King Alex, father to two princes, Bob and Charlie, dies without naming either his successor. The two princes both claim the throne, and come into conflict with one another.
  • Exaggerated: King Alex really got around and has more heirs than can be counted on both hands and feet. He died without a successor named. All of his children claim the throne.
  • Advertisement:
  • Downplayed: King Alex has 2 children, but one was conceived out of wedlock. He dies without naming a successor. The two children both want the throne.
  • Inverted: King Alex dies without naming either of his 2 children his successor. Neither want the throne, so they fight over who doesn't get to be king.
  • Subverted:
    • King Alex dies without naming a successor. However, he only had 1 child.
    • King Alex, father of two, becomes deathly ill, and doesn't name a successor. However, he gets better.
    • Faye finds the king's will, which names Charlie as his successor, and the crisis is resolved.
  • Double Subverted:
    • A previously unknown child of King Alex steps forward and claims the throne.
    • King Alex's Evil Chancellor decides that he is interested in being king, so he has King Alex killed in secret.
    • King Alex survives his illness, but still doesn't name a successor. Once he dies of old age, both his sons claim the throne.
    • Advertisement:
    • More wills are found, all claiming different sons (and other relatives) of King Alex successors. It's not clear whether the will Faye found is the genuine article or a forgery, or whether it had been superseded by another will.
  • Parodied: King Alex dies without explicitly naming any of his sons his successor, and everyone acts like the kingdom is on the brink of civil war. However, if anyone just read the damn Constitution, they'd find out that King Alex's oldest son, Prince Bob, is the heir to the throne.
  • Zig Zagged: ???
  • Averted:
    • King Alex names a successor.
    • The Constitution states that if the King fails to name a successor, the throne goes to his oldest son.
  • Enforced: ???
  • Lampshaded: ???
  • Invoked: Emperor Evulz encourages both Bob and Charlie to fight over the throne, in order to cause a crisis that will weaken the kingdom.
  • Advertisement:
  • Exploited: ???
  • Defied:
    • King Alex immediately names his successor as soon as he starts to come down with an illness. Said illness ends up killing him.
    • King Alex was a ruthless dictator, and his two sons, Bob and Charlie, are both White Sheep who wish to atone, so they abolish the monarchy.
    • King Alex makes a point to only have 1 child and sets up rules so that only that child can rule.
    • The Constitution explicitly outlines a long line of succession. If an adversary is powerful enough to wipe out everyone in it, it's capable of curbstomping the kingdom so badly that the succession crisis would be the least of its worries anyway.
    • Bob has no interest in ruling, immediately giving up his right to the throne to Charlie, saying he'll only rule if Charlie dies.
    • As his last action while on his deathbed, King Alex abolishes the Monarchy, appointing his most trusted advisor to oversee the transition to democracy.
  • Discussed: "King Alex really should name a successor, or else we're going to be in big trouble when he dies!"
  • Conversed: "Those dummies in that show should just hold an election or something."
  • Implied: King Alex never names a successor. Some time after his death, it's revealed that his kingdom has fallen into violent unrest.
  • Deconstructed: King Alex dies, leaving his 2 sons, Bob and Charlie, to argue over who gets the throne. However, in the ensuing crisis, Emperor Evulz takes advantage and launches an invasion of the kingdom.
  • Reconstructed: Bob and Charlie realize that they must put aside their differences for the good of the kingdom, and agree to figure out who will be king after Evulz has been defeated.
  • Played For Drama: Bob and Charlie both want the throne. Both the entire royal family and the country gets split between opinions, with relative killing relative, and Bob just so happens to stumble upon the country's nuclear arsenal...

If this page gets deleted, will the main page or the laconic page succeed it?

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: