Post-1900 Alternate History Tropes/Cliches:

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by raharris1973, Jul 10, 2019.

  1. Strategos' Risk Oriental Orientalist

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    Not to diminish this thread, but I think we should have an entire wiki devoted to AH cliches, as there are so many, and is probably best catalogued by date or subject.

    Perhaps this thread can be its nucleus.
     
  2. claybaskit professor of alternative history

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    Oct 12, 2016
    If j.f.k survives 11]63, Governor Connolly will not.


    As a substitute for Ronald Reagan , Elvis or john Wayne will become president.'

    if the a.h writer writing a timeline is conservative Reagan will become president in 68 and all will be wonderful.if the writer is liberal however. Humphrey will become president in 68 and all will be wonderful.


    Everything is always better if someone other then Nixon is president in 68 and if hes not assainated killed in car accident or anything. he is secretary of state in the alternative admiration.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2019
  3. dwkelley Member

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    To be fair, dirigibles were competing with cruise ships, not airplanes. They were never intended to be true competitors to their winged cousins.
     
  4. dwkelley Member

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    If George Washington does not serve precisely two, four-year terms as President, America is doomed to dystopia.

    If Lincoln is not President during the Civil War, the south can't fail to win / survive.
     
  5. HeX Self-Proclaimed Disney Expert

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    The 1950s was so stiflingly socially conservative as a direct result of WWII, the return of G.I.s from overseas, and the Baby Boom. All those returning soldiers got married and started families pretty fast due to them having just stared death in the face and not wanting to lose their chance at a life, as well as things like the G.I. Bill, giving those same soldiers enormous steps ahead in getting an education or starting up a business. This sudden uptick in families required vast amounts of cheap living space to be found, and this is where the modern suburb got its start, as Levittowns began popping up all over the nation. Levittowns, the idea of which was created by one William Levitt, were efficient in the fact that they created the huge amounts of housing the Baby Boom required, but at the cost of every house being identical, sometimes even down to the paint job and shutters. Living in a suburb where every house looks the same, where every man goes off to work in the mornings and returns in the evenings, where every woman was simultaneously a housekeeper and a babysitter while also holding down the odd job, and where every child went to now-ubiquitous public schools, it was almost impossible to not be conformist, something only amplified by the Fourth Great Awakening. While some artists like Elvis Presley and the Beach Boys broke from the status quo (Elvis in particular was very controversial for his 'suggestive' dance moves, which basically entailed slightly gyrating his hips to his music), everything was, on the surface, conformist, neatly encapsulated in the box of social conservatism and the Second Red Scare.

    (I'm just regurgitating two APUSH chapters now, but screw it, I'm running with it.) With all this in mind, the 1960s essentially have to go on the proverbial marijuana-fueled, sex-crazed, anti-war, anti-establishment acid trip that was the counterculture movement. America had been basically governed by the same societal rules since the 1930s, after the Great Depression killed off the high of the 1920s and conservatized the nation. That was something that could continue no longer, especially as things like the Civil Rights Movement and the Vietnam War flared up. Each and every action has an equal and opposite reaction, and the reaction to the 1950s was counterculture. Honestly, the movement could have probably been pushed back a few years, but it'd be next to impossible to kill entirely if the 1950s of a timeline are anything like OTL. Can't really say anything about the 1980s, though. That's not my area of expertise.

    TL;DR: If World War Two goes off similarly to OTL, the 1950s and 1960s will also be largely similar to OTL. Not identical, but similar.
     
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  6. Tamara Well-Known Member

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    Mar 23, 2019
    I guess that is true. I just sometimes get the impression that because Germany played such an important role in the 20th century, with the two world wars and everything, that people tend to give it a lot of attention. But you’re right that it is in a position to play a large role.
     
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  7. Stenz Don't judge the past by the standards of today... Monthly Donor

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    That the July 20th plotters were secret liberals, waiting to turn Germany into a democratic paradise as soon as Hitler was dead.
     
  8. HelloThere Well-Known Member

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    Oct 11, 2018
    - without Stalin, the USSR is literally DOOMED and doesn't survive a war with Germany
    - the USSR either collapses in a civil war or becomes China 2.0, there is literally no other option
    - Nazi Germany wins WW2 without America to save the day
    - every Third Party in the US will lead to a dystopian future
    - if something goes wrong, nuclear weapons will always be used
    - Religion will ALWAYS the same way as OTL
    - no WW1 means that the world somehow becomes a utopia
    - without the October Revolution Russia will always be a better country
    - social changes always depend on one person, if he or she dies change is CANCELED
    - MLK as vice-president to either JFK or RFK despite MLK being a democratic socialist
    - Market Socialism will never exist outside the US
    - without Hindenburg as Reichspräsident Hitler can never rise to power
    - if Hitler rises to power he will always be Führer and Reichskanzler, he can never be just head of government like Mussolini was
    - Monarchy being restored in Germany during the 30's despite the fact that most people didn't want it
    - NOTHING happens in countries like Spain or Portugal
    - if Germany wins WW1, Britain and France will always go fascist or communist and heavily revanchist
    - if Germany wins WW1 they will send military to Russia to overthrow the Soviet Republic
    - if Stresemann survives, Germany will stay a democracy
    - Reagan is always conservative
    - Adolf Hitler writing a book
     
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  9. b0ned0me Well-Known Member

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    Were cruise ships famous for moving at a decent speed while requiring their first-class passengers to pay the price of a house to sleep in bunk beds, eat mediocre food and huddle in cramped spaces while bundling themselves in umpteen layers of clothing against the cold? People get all moist about the size and space of airships but the sad reality is that they were pokey cramped miserable little things compared to a liner, and horribly expensive.
     
  10. Sam R. Well-Known Member

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    Weimar. The 1930s.
     
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  11. Aloha Well-Known Member

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    Apr 7, 2018
    I personally don't like these sort of threads. The reason I don't like these threads is because they discourage people, whether they're old or new, from contributing to the site.
    Why does it bother people so much that someone might be interested in a particular subject? Why do you give a shit? In what way does it directly affect you negatively? Maybe you have already known about the subject, but what about the person on the other side? Perhaps he has learned about alternate history as a concept and has taken an interest in it. He decides he might find a particular subject interesting, maybe it's "what if Al Gore won the 2000 election" or "what if the Whites won the Russian Civil War" or "what if France went communist" or "what if Germany went communist" or "what if USSR joins Axis" or "what if Russia joined the Central Powers" or "what if Republicans won the Spanish Civil War" or "what if Mao lost" or "what if the South won the American Civil War", etc. Perhaps he wants to make a thread to discuss a topic he's interested in, then he finds people coming in to say something like, "Ugh. We've seen this before, cunt." How excited do you think he's going to be to post next time?
    If you're going to say that it wastes your time to go through threads that you don't like or find cliched, then I'm sorry but that makes no sense. Is anyone making you read posts? Do you get paid to post here? Do you think you're improving anyone's well-being by posting here? If not, then you're spending your free-time here, which is what so many of us are doing. How can you waste your free time on here? And on top of that, what if someone were to tell you that they didn't like what you had to post or thought that something that you were posting was cliched? Do you guys think you're not guilty of posting something "cliched" or appreciating a topic that's "cliched"? What exactly makes your content any better than theirs? Just don't read about a subject if you don't like it and/or have seen it before. If you've read it before and don't like it because of that, just ignore it, don't read it. At the very least, if you don't like a topic and want to voice your opinion on it, at least put it in a way that isn't so negative and cynical or perhaps provide some constructive criticism. I personally don't like the subject of Communist Britain or SEGA beating Nintendo and think they're pretty cliched, but I'm not going to try to bar people from talking about it because of what I think of it. Everyone should have a say.
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2019 at 8:41 AM
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  12. ghilonif Well-Known Member

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    I think this is justified, Mussolini outside of a very long term plan couldn't just abolish the monarchy, while Hitler could just wait for the next presidential election, win with 98% and have Goering as Chancellor, if only he wanted to.
     
  13. Coiler Well-Known Member

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    Jan 10, 2009
    To be fair, I think the "20th Century Lost Cause Clean Wehrmacht" postwar culture is to blame for this, it didn't generate in the AH community.
     
  14. Stenz Don't judge the past by the standards of today... Monthly Donor

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    That’s fair, although I never claimed AH is to blame for it.

    I generally think when it’s written, it’s due to a lack of research on the various character’s motivations and personal prejudices. That or a strong element of handwaving.
     
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  15. Tamara Well-Known Member

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    At least one country always goes communist, and that country is either Russia, France, or Germany.
     
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  16. SlideAway Well-Known Member

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    Oh, also: Woodrow Wilson is responsible for everything terrible that has happened in the US or the rest of the world since. And in AH, Teddy Roosevelt is president for 3 or 4 or 5 terms and makes everything awesome.
     
  17. Some Bloke Well-Known Member

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    Number 13 on the original list: Can't think of many other Muslim royal dynasties with a similar and similarly longstanding devil's bargain with such a domineering, intolerant intolerant, and expansionist sect.
     
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  18. Some Bloke Well-Known Member

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    Every country needs its myths, right?
     
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  19. NiGHTS BMC-14

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    There already is one.
     
  20. NiGHTS BMC-14

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    1. Nazis and Soviets always being a thing. I honestly find their monarchical predecessors more interesting.
    2. America intervening in Europe or being allies with Britain. In general, I'd like to see North America get the South America treatment.
    3. Things revolving around maps and militaries. I mean I like to see maps change a bit or a lot, but I actually want to see how the cultures on the ground change, in more than just military or economic terms.
    4. China and Russia being divided and conquered.
    5. Invincible Anglos.
    6. Weak Frenchies
    7. Forever divided Arabs.
    8. Continental nations, except USA, having meager navies compared to island nations, specifically Britain and Japan.
    9. India and African nations doing nothing on their own without their colonial masters.