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Mar 11th 2019 at 7:15:30 AM •••

With the example about \"Mamma är lik sin mamma\" (\"Mum is like her mom\") by Siw Malmkvist, I\'m pretty sure that it comes more under Fair For Its Day, since it was released at a time when such female stereotypes were coming under criticism and actually changed big time.

Jan 1st 2019 at 9:21:28 AM •••

I would think King Of The Hill plots fit well in this trope if this apply. It\'s filled with social commentary of topics and issues that are relevant today and in a viewpoint of a hard-working southern conservative Christian Hank.

May 3rd 2015 at 10:43:10 PM •••

Can't a work resonate today if it at least looks modern? The style of how something is done, its content notwithstanding, can appeal a great deal to today's audiences, particularly if there isn't any distracting ideological baggage.

Aug 24th 2013 at 7:33:02 PM •••

Am I the only one who finds it a little troublesome that some of the examples on this page refer to television shows that are still on the air? Oh my gosh! Isn't it amazing how works created in the long-ago era of the 1990's still resonate today? Most of the examples on the Values Dissonance page are either from time periods prior (or nearly so) to living memory, that is, before modern audiences were born, or from cultures widely separated by geography, religion, or philosophy. It seems to me that for this trope to have any real meaning, the value in question has to resonate across a similarly wide gulf in time, space, or culture. Otherwise, we're just talking about how the values in a work can resonate with the same culture that produced and was the primary audience for a work. As it is right now, this trope reads like People Sit On Chairs. Is there any strong reason I shouldn't start pruning a lot of examples?

ETA: Well, it's been a week with no replies, so let the pruning commence. (Incidentally, I left in the Anime/Manga examples, even though they were all pretty recent, because any work made in Japan that becomes popular in the US, or vice versa, is an example of this trope almost by definition, but I'm open to the idea that that means that Anime/Manga examples also ought to be excluded unless they also resonate across time.)

Edited by Hide/Show Replies
Jul 31st 2015 at 12:08:56 PM •••

They seem to have crept back in, so I removed a lot of them again. I think that a few things (related to trans issues and maybe homophobia, where cultural attitudes have changed very fast) might be worth mentioning, but even then, support for those issues is Older Than They Think. But things like "this work from a decade ago about the economy is extra-relevant today!" definitely don't qualify.

Aug 3rd 2011 at 1:12:39 PM •••

While not as important as this whole Anti-Flamebait thing, it would be helpful if somebody in the know would explain what the short acronym "B5" means in the Blake's Seven entry.

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Apr 4th 2011 at 6:19:59 PM •••

Alright, this trope page seems to be one giant piece of Flame Bait. Despite the page telling people to not assume that just because something is old that it is accurate, the examples seem to be doing just that. These examples are highly subjective, yet they are portrayed as facts. Not to mention that they all seem to lean towards a certain direction on the political spectrum (while the Urban Legends all seem to lean towards the other). I can find several in the TV section alone that I do not agree with at all.

Just because people see something does not mean it is there. Take the comic book and movie 300, which was accused of being, among other things, a racist screed against middle easterners and a jingoistic vehicle for the Bush Administration. None of these have proven true, yet they are still upheld as such by many.

Can we please re-write the examples to show that they are truly subjective, and that only some people, not all, believe that they are resonant? Otherwise, we're violating the rules of this wiki.

Edited by Severen Hide/Show Replies
Feb 5th 2012 at 1:40:32 PM •••

Considering that it's a YMMV trope, isn't subjectiveness in the examples a given?

Apr 7th 2013 at 8:35:54 AM •••

This being a subjective trope, examples will be subjective. However, Examples Are Not Arguable is wiki policy, and so the examples are written as factual.

Oct 30th 2010 at 7:10:37 PM •••

[on the off chance I can't get it back, here's the original page]

The tools of conquest do not necessarily come with bombs and explosives and fallout. There are weapons that are simply thoughts, attitudes, prejudices to be found only in the minds of men. For the record, prejudices can kill, and suspicion can destroy, and a thoughtless, frightened search for a scapegoat has a fallout all of its own; for the children, and the children yet unborn. And the pity of it is that these things cannot be confined to The Twilight Zone.
Rod Serling, The Twilight Zone, "The Monsters Are Due On Maple Street"

Some moral values just don't travel well. The attitudes of the society have changed, or the issue they addressed has become obsolete.

But wine, only get better with age. Years after the original author and audience have passed, new generations will still look at the given Aesop and say "Damn right." Maybe some authors knowingly spoke to issues that were years ahead of their time. Maybe many of society's questions are just Older Than They Think. Maybe they just got lucky. These are the principles that stand the test of time and have outlived the original moral issue they were meant to address a hundred times over.

Keep in mind that this is somewhat a subjective trope, as what resonates as an accurate observation for a conservative may not be the same as a liberal, for a woman may not be the same as for a man, for a fundamentalist may not be the same as an atheist, for a citizen of one country not the same as a citizen of another, and so on. The best advice (as always applicable when one deals with the internet) is to keep an open mind. Likewise, do not assume that merely because it is old that it is accurate.

May cross over with Some Anvils Need to Be Dropped.


Comic Books

  • An issue of Mad Magazine from the 1970's satirizes the over-the-top and offensive personalities that people use while speaking on CB radios. Its commentary on anonymous personalities is eerily predictive of G.I.F.T..

Live-Action TV

  • The quote above came from the classic The Twilight Zone episode about aliens who use good old-fashioned human prejudice and hysteria while they just watch watch and laugh. During the widespread Communist hysteria of the era, this was pretty resonant. Fast-forward to the Turn of the Millennium and The War on Terror, and it damn near seems like prophecy.
    • Indeed, the remake of this episode in the 2003 series makes the connection explicitly, replacing the fear of aliens with fear of terrorists.
    • There are dozens of episodes like this. 'He's Alive' is another good contender, on how the we keep monsters like Hitler alive so long as we spread intolerance, no matter of what kind.
  • Star Trek has managed to come up with many stories that are excellent examples of this trope. The famous Star Trek The Original Series episode "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield" was relevant during the Civil Rights movement of the late 1960s when it aired. It still applies unnervingly well to all the racial and religious fanaticism of the early 21st century.
    • Indeed, a episode of Star Trek Enterprise made during the 21st century, purposely made as a tribute to "Last Battlefield", even lampshades the fact that this type of story is just as true, if not more, today.
    • The Next Generation episode "The Drumhead" in which an Admiral, seemingly well-meaning creates a paranoid witch-hunt with trumped-up evidence and the most specious accusations. No, it wasn't made in the 21st century. Likewise the Deep Space Nine episode Paradise Lost (about The Federation teetering on the brink of becoming a police state in paranoid overreaction to the Changeling threat) is actually better when seen now than it was when it first aired.
  • Babylon Five had the Earth Alliance government taken over by a xenophobic scaremongering ultra-authoritarian regime which had some uncomfortably close similarities with the Bush Administration — so much so that right-wing critics retrospectively criticised the show for being too political and "left-wing", apparently not realising that the show ended its run two years before the 2000 election.
  • The complete over-the-top racism and bigotry of Archie Bunker from All In The Family still continues to find an audience who find it all too ridiculous all these years after the show went off the air.
    • On the other side of the coin, the number of viewers still hellbent on Completely Missing the Point of this show (a problem that utterly disgusted the writer during the original TV run) is arguably at least as much of a problem today.
  • The Cosby Show was a watershed for television in The '80s, with its image of a Black family that was well-to-do, educated, and loving to each other; a far cry from the disfunctional, uneducated brutes that the Media regularly portrays. This message of what Black (or any minority) family could be is the reason that the show is still popular in reruns 20 years after it went off the air.
  • The Avengers introduced Cathy Gale, arguably the first liberated woman on television, in 1962, and her iconic successor Emma Peel in 1965. You'd probably think that now, over 40 years on, they'd be Faux Action Girls or Rule Abiding Rebels. You'd be wrong. Mrs Gale and Mrs Peel, and even Tara King although to a lesser extent, are credible action heroines and feminist role models even today, much more so in fact than many who came after them.
  • M* A* S* H was extremely resonant with audiences still reeling from The Vietnam War. It still strikes a chord today, what with several similarly questionable American military engagements in the Middle East.


  • In many ways Gustav LeBon's The Crowd, A Study Of The Popular Mind is a work filled with irrelevant outdated prejudices concerning "the mass", but parts so well described the American experience following 9-11:
    "A hundred petty crimes or petty accidents will not strike the imagination of crowds in the least, whereas a single great crime or a single great accident will profoundly impress them, even though the results be infinitely less disastrous than those of the hundred small accidents put together. The epidemic of influenza, which caused the death but a few years ago of five thousand persons in Paris alone, made very little impression on the popular imagination. The reason was that this veritable hecatomb was not embodied in any visible image, but was only learnt from statistical information furnished weekly. An accident which should have caused the death of only five hundred instead of five thousand persons, but on the same day and in public, as the outcome of an accident appealing strongly to the eye, by the fall, for instance, of the Eiffel Tower, would have produced, on the contrary, an immense impression on the imagination of the crowd."
  • 1984. As proof of how subjective this trope is, pretty much every successive administration eventually gets compared to Ingsoc by its opposition... which its supporters (who may have only recently said the same of the opposing party's leadership) will vehemently deny.
  • Uncle Toms Cabin, particularly the ideas of passive resistance and racial equality.
  • Othello. By William Shakespeare. It just doesn't get more resonant than that. And we're not just talking about racial prejudice, but about how Blacks (or any minority culture) assimilate; the role and the image of the military; the destructive power of rumors....
  • A Christmas Carol. By Charles Dickens. The message of the true meaning of Christmas being about how one spends their life, not their money, might be more relevant in these Recessionary times more than ever.
  • Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand. Your Mileage May Vary, of course, but it cannot be denied that from Bioshock to the Tea Party movement, it's influencing political culture still.
  • Tibullus, an ancient Roman poet who lived in the 1st century BC wrote an elegy (the eleventh) where he states that war is madness and wishes for peace.
  • Robert 'Rabbie' Burns' poem Holy Willie's Prayer, written in 1785 about a hypocritical church elder who condemns others for perceived transgression, whilst giving spurious justifications about his own. Compare with the various evangelists caught out and their own justifications for their behaviour today.
    The deities that I adore
    Are social Peace and Plenty;
    I'm better pleas'd to make one more,
    Than be the death of twenty.
  • The first part of the first Discworld book, The Colour of Magic, bears a strange resemblance to the 2008 economic crisis, if you squint a bit.
  • The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner was a brilliant look at psychology and the use of religion to excuse yourself while denouncing everyone else. It was written in 1824 by a poor Scottish farmer.


  • Star Trek IV's message about environmental responsibility would make you think it was released today, but it was actually released in 1986. Likewise, we had The Lorax, Silent Running and Soylent Green back in the early '70s and the seminal Silent Spring in '62.
  • Much of the message of All Quiet On The Western Front has lasted well past the 1930's. Not every war film made during that period has aged as well.
    • One war movie whose Aesops about the nature of war and politics that has also lasted as long as the example above is Stanley Kubrick's 1957 war movie Paths Of Glory with Kirk Douglas.
  • The message of The Day The Earth Stood Still has aged pretty well.
  • When it comes to the inherent madness of nuclear war, has any movie on the subject endured the way Kubrick's Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb has?
  • Being There's satirical commentary on the importance of image over substance in media and politics just gets truer and truer every year. (This applies to the source novel as well, but it was subject to Adaptation Displacement by the film.)
  • Network may have seemed farfetched in 1976, but in today's media landscape, it's one "Funny Aneurysm" Moment after another.
  • Invasion Of The Body Snatchers and other Pod People-style stories. The '50s and '70s movies are classics that sum up what the fear of their time was while still retaining Values Resonance.
  • Once upon a time, The Truman Show was fictional. Now, we know it as Webcams and Reality TV.
  • There were a number of articles from right wing periodicals when Revenge Of The Sith came out, with the writers claiming the movie was a bold-faced attack on Bush administration doctrine (and, in some cases, throwing their lot in with The Empire). Lucas then admitted in an interview that the entire design for the prequels had been laid out when Watergate was big in the news.


  • Tom Lehrer's Pollution song.
  • The Turtles' "Elenore." Meant as a snarky protest against the demand for more songs like "Happy Together," it satisfies the more Genre Savvy who like the thrill of being in love but accept that it makes you say and do cliched and somewhat stupid things.

Newspaper Comics

  • This Calvin And Hobbes strip from 15 years ago concerning the economy may seems frighteningly accurate to the US's current economic situation: here.

Urban Legends

  • Fake Values Resonance is a common theme for Urban Legends, examples from Snopes follows. Unless noted otherwise, these are false:
    • The circumstances of the 2000 election supposedly mirror an 18th century professors predictions of the fall of democracy: here.
    • The rationale for the invasion of Iraq supposedly mirror a supposed 1944 Reuter's article concerning the invasion of Nazi-conquered France: here.
    • The rationale for removing troops from Iraq mirror another supposed 1944 Reuter's article concerning the removal of troops from World War Two's European Theater: here.
    • A Reuters article from 1945 supposedly draws parallels between post-war Germany and Iraq: here.


  • A number of lyrics written by Oscar Hammerstein, most spectacularly "You've Got to Be Carefully Taught". [1]
  • The Clouds, by Aristophanes mocks both conservative and left-wing Strawman Political types, with the former being portrayed as not using actual arguments, just saying "this is the way we've always done it" and "Doing it diferantly will make you gay" and the latter controlling most of Socrates' Acadamy and being able to convince anyone of anything, including that the only reason it isn't acceptible for sons to beat their fathers is that there's a law that says there isn't. Today, gay rights and moral relativism are actually points of debate.

Western Animation

  • The early Charlie Brown holiday specials that satirize extreme commercialism. Sally's cry of "I haven't even finished all of my Halloween candy!" from 1973's A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving seems almost quaint when you consider that some stores don't even wait for Halloween anymore before putting Christmas merchandise out. In fact, in the following year's It's the Easter Beagle, Charlie Brown, the kids go to a store that's selling Christmas merchandise alongside Easter stuff (which is to say, in spring).
  • The anti-war short Peace On Earth, released on the eve of World War Two, still carries a haunting message applicable to today's world. Even in the 1950's it was remade to be about the Cold War because the metaphors it used still worked then.

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