A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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  1. - Top - End - #61
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    Selina Kyle is CN with LOTS of Good tendencies, however. I guess there's only so long you can keep dating Batman before his thirst for justice runs off on you a little. Her Outer Plane isn't Limbo, it's Ysgard, heading for Arborea.

    In fact, the closer Selina gets to Bruce, the more legit CG she becomes. She'll never follow the law, really, but she will start aiding abused women and protecting east end and stuff like that.

  2. - Top - End - #62
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    Quote Originally Posted by Angelalex242 View Post
    Joker is most certainly CE, Ledger describes himself as 'an agent of Chaos.' He is not less Chaotic because he's good at it.

    On Stark: That's one, deeply regretted part of his life that was violently out of character with every other Tony Stark. And as noted, he's been redeeming himself ever since. That's what I meant by deeply regretted his actions during Civil War. Even during Civil War, when Cap 'dies', Stark asks himself if it was worth it, and quickly concludes 'no, it wasn't.'
    Except at least half if not more like 3/4ths of that was after civil war was over and he'd won. Physically attacking the Runaway's with a shield team using guns, telling peter "No, I will not save your aunt's life, but I will attack you with my suit and try to take you in so you can't try to get someone else to help you save her.", telling Thor "Yeah hey you have to register and work for me cause I had this great idea while you were dead.", deciding that the literal force of creation of the universe was too dangerous cause it wasn't controlled as part of his avengers and that he'd kill any X-men that got in the way of him destroying it, including the one's it was host body too, Sending Hulk off world against his will to a hell hole and then going "opps, that didn't go according to plan, can't have anything not go according to my plans. Better force him to the originally intended planet." which resulted in the whole planet and world war hulk incidents, that all happened AFTER civil war and AFTER Cap got killed.
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  3. - Top - End - #63
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    It's still out of character with everything he does in every other story arc.

    You'd have to show me an example of LE behavior in an arc after Civil War to prove your point. Otherwise, it's like he donned a helm of opposite alignment, took it off, now he's himself again.

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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    Korbel, you made a pretty good analysis, just one nitpick:
    Quote Originally Posted by KorbeltheReader View Post
    TN (the undecided): Doctor Manhattan, Luke Skywalker before meeting Ben Kenobi, Quark, Mr. Universe (Serenity), Gaius Baltar, Beric Dondarrion, the Jawas
    Luke possesed a great desire to leave Tatooine and join the Rebel Alliance against the Empire like his friend Biggs Darklighter. His motivations, ideals and goals were already NG, he just wasn't in a situation to act on them.

    Uncle Owen, however, would be TN.

    One thing I liked about what you pointed out was the "fine line" between CN and NE. It's funny, because I always maintain that NG and LN have very similar characteristics, because it's a narrow border between someone who prioritizes what is "right" vis someone who prioritizes what is "just".


    One thing that's important to remember about all alignments in general is that they only really work in the moral/ethical framework of a world like the default setting of D&D. That is, a universe with objective forces of Good/Evil/Law/Chaos. Anything based off any other type of multiverse is bound to cause dissent among observers, because we tend to use our own real-world perceptions of Good/Evil/Law/Chaos, which can be very subjective. Hell, even in a D&D world, an individual might perceive himself to be a "good guy", but actually have a Neutral, or even Evil alignment, because the objective nature of those cosmic forces does not care one whit about the perceptions of an individual.

    Take, for example, the oft-debated Batman alignment. The 9x9 chart that claims he is ALL alignments is not meant to be taken seriously. Using the definitions of 3.5e (the last complete D&D edition to use the 9 alignment system), we can see that the game explicitly says that individuals are not 100% compliant with their alignment 100% of the time. Alignment is a wide brush with which to paint someone. One cannot attempt to force EACH AND EVERY action that individual takes into their alignment. The Complete Scoundrel, however, explicitly states, that if he were judged according to the D&D system, Batman would be Lawful Good. His methods are sneaky and underhanded, yes, but that's because he's a "scoundrel" type character.

    My method of explaining alignment can be summed up with this:

    Alignment is a broad generalization of an individual's overall outlook, beliefs, and ideals, as shown through their actions. Alignment is NOT an absolute barometer of action nor affiliation.

    I think if everyone took that little blurb to heart, there'd be a lot less misunderstanding about alignment.
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  5. - Top - End - #65
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    The Star Wars has only half those ethics in place...

    There's objective Good: (Light Side of the Force) and objective Evil: (Dark Side of the Force), but there's no cosmic Law or Chaos entities.

    Since there's basically a binary choice...light side or dark side...things are much simpler then D&D.

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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    The Bedlam Spirits were pretty Chaotic, in the Devilworlds comics. Abeloth's background was also heavy on the "chaos as a source of destruction and renewal" in theme - she might qualify as an Entity Of Chaos (and Evil).

    Not much in the way of "Law as a force" though. Light side is sometimes characterised as, in excess, representing Law at its worst - stagnation.

    In Crucible:

    The Force was life, and life was growth, and nothing grew that did not change.

    And change was destruction.

    That was why the dark side existed. Life bore death, death nourished life, destruction came before rejuvenation. And pain came before healing. The dark side was as necessary to life as the light side was. Without it, verdant worlds would stagnate, galactic empires would rule forever.

    Luke saw all that and more, saw that conflict was as necessary to progress as harmony, that suffering was as essential to wisdom as was joy. Perhaps there was no pure good, no absolute evil. There was only life, only change and growth, suffering and joy ... death and rebirth.
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  7. - Top - End - #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by TuggyNE View Post
    OK, you can argue he's not Good, but Evil? Ummmmm. Where's the evil acts? I'm not seeing them.
    1: Up Until Ironman 3's ending (and we dont have Avengers 2 to see where it goes from there) Tony is motivated by the fact he was a jerkass, his legacy is that he was a jerkass, and his image is that hes a jerkass. At least upto the end of Iron Man 2 he definitely is motivated mostly by not exactly good morals.

    2: at least as far as the movies are concerned, the only tech he has made to any degree to be publically available was the Arc Reactor (which is implied that hes going to be building electric cars around). the suit designs could be modified into prosthetic limbs but he didnt give those to SI. He fixed the coding error in extremis but never released the patch, and at least several months after the end of Ironman 3 people are still exploding from Extremis because Thor 2 happened in the middle of Agents of Shield.

    Quote Originally Posted by Angelalex242 View Post
    It's still out of character with everything he does in every other story arc.

    You'd have to show me an example of LE behavior in an arc after Civil War to prove your point. Otherwise, it's like he donned a helm of opposite alignment, took it off, now he's himself again.
    Actually, no. Assuming we use a functional Ethics version of the alignment with corrected G-E axis, Stark only qualifies in rare circumstances as Good. to quote Tolkien, Gandalf with the ring would Use Good to commit evil. Tony Stark primarily does Good for the sake of Himself. the possitive PR for being a good guy is better then the PR for being a villain. His actions are evil, committed against evil, for himself. The movie version is more along the lines of Lawful Neutral with a good bias hurt by the fact he forgets to actually do good sometimes.
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  8. - Top - End - #68
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    The light/dark side of the force are more along the lines of discipline versus emotion.

    The Jedi Order, the light side are like stoics whereas the sith embrace emotions, usually fear and anger as they are strong emotions.


    Tony Stark, while I am only going off the movies would be CN imo. He is the jump first look later kind of guy, and is very eccentric, which leads me to chaotic on the Law/Chaos axis. I say neutral because for the majority of the film series he seems to be doing what he does for his own sake. He likes the adventure, etc.


    I must say, Dienekes, that was a great breakdown.
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  9. - Top - End - #69
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    Quote Originally Posted by dascarletm View Post
    The light/dark side of the force are more along the lines of discipline versus emotion.

    The Jedi Order, the light side are like stoics whereas the sith embrace emotions, usually fear and anger as they are strong emotions.


    Tony Stark, while I am only going off the movies would be CN imo. He is the jump first look later kind of guy, and is very eccentric, which leads me to chaotic on the Law/Chaos axis. I say neutral because for the majority of the film series he seems to be doing what he does for his own sake. He likes the adventure, etc.


    I must say, Dienekes, that was a great breakdown.
    Movie Stark is an accurate, but significantly different instance of the character. This is because as far as movies are concerned, his status on the avengers as "The Villain who fights evil" isnt really that important. The movies want to depict basically Stark becoming a hero, so hes almost definitely there CN/G but hes typically The evil who fights evil.
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  10. - Top - End - #70
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    I tried to go for less obvious examples.

    Lawful Good: Detective Stabler (Law and Order: SVU). He's a pretty straightforward guy when it comes to the rules, and usually tries to follow them as best he can. The only times he willingly breaks the rules are for the sake of doing what's right.

    Neutral Good: Phillip J. Fry (Futurama). He's a nice guy, and looks out for people. He's an ass sometimes, but when you get down to it, he's willing to do what's right. He can break rules, but he doesn't go out of his way to do so.

    Chaotic Good: Dean Winchester (Supernatural). Screw the rules, Dean kills monsters. He's got one goal, and that's exterminating threats to mankind, rule of law be damned. He keeps promises, but he also fights dirty, lies, steals and cheats to win.

    Lawful Neutral: Uatu the Watcher (Marvel Comics). He can not intercede. He may want to intercede, but the rule is that he can't.

    True Neutral: Deadpool (Marvel Comics). He cares not for good, or evil, or law or chaos. He knows he's fictional, and is out for the cash and the lulz.

    Chaotic Neutral: Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock). He only takes cases because they interest him, and he obviously has zero respect for authority. His behavior borders on an antisocial personality.

    Lawful Evil: Ed Wuncler (Boondocks). A shrewd businessman with no concern for his workers and no racial sensitivity. He destroyed a community with fast food once, just so he could purchase a nearby park on the cheap.

    Neutral Evil: Darla Dimple (Cats Don't Dance): Sadistic, selfish, and perfectly fine with siccing her lackey on a dancing cat just to keep the limelight to herself.

    Chaotic Evil: Evil Entity/Nibiru (Scooby-Doo Mystery Incorporated). Vile, destructive, and wishing nothing but to gleefully feast upon the agony of mankind.
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  11. - Top - End - #71
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    Quote Originally Posted by malonkey1 View Post
    I tried to go for less obvious examples.

    Lawful Good: Detective Stabler (Law and Order: SVU). He's a pretty straightforward guy when it comes to the rules, and usually tries to follow them as best he can. The only times he willingly breaks the rules are for the sake of doing what's right.

    Neutral Good: Phillip J. Fry (Futurama). He's a nice guy, and looks out for people. He's an ass sometimes, but when you get down to it, he's willing to do what's right. He can break rules, but he doesn't go out of his way to do so.

    Chaotic Good: Dean Winchester (Supernatural). Screw the rules, Dean kills monsters. He's got one goal, and that's exterminating threats to mankind, rule of law be damned. He keeps promises, but he also fights dirty, lies, steals and cheats to win.

    Lawful Neutral: Uatu the Watcher (Marvel Comics). He can not intercede. He may want to intercede, but the rule is that he can't.

    True Neutral: Deadpool (Marvel Comics). He cares not for good, or evil, or law or chaos. He knows he's fictional, and is out for the cash and the lulz.

    Chaotic Neutral: Sherlock Holmes (Sherlock). He only takes cases because they interest him, and he obviously has zero respect for authority. His behavior borders on an antisocial personality.

    Lawful Evil: Ed Wuncler (Boondocks). A shrewd businessman with no concern for his workers and no racial sensitivity. He destroyed a community with fast food once, just so he could purchase a nearby park on the cheap.

    Neutral Evil: Darla Dimple (Cats Don't Dance): Sadistic, selfish, and perfectly fine with siccing her lackey on a dancing cat just to keep the limelight to herself.

    Chaotic Evil: Evil Entity/Nibiru (Scooby-Doo Mystery Incorporated). Vile, destructive, and wishing nothing but to gleefully feast upon the agony of mankind.
    I would say that your assesment of Chaos-Neutrality is backwards in the Deadpool and Sherlock Holmes
    Mr. Holmes, though irreverent, prefers stability to lawlessness. His very profession, though borne for his amusement, is indicative of a not entirely or predominantly chaotic personality.
    Whereas Deadpool's deadpooliness is firmly rooted in chaos. Being out for the "lulz" is a very strong chaotic tendency
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    It is interesting and, I think, important to note that the majority of the "CG" examples seem to be freedom fighters/revolutionaries to one degree or another. CG is the alignment of the heroic warrior against oppressive government. Not because all warriors fight for the right reasons, and not because all governments are oppressive, but because it is easiest to conceive of the "Chaotic" good person as being chaotic because they oppose the law of the land. And that is not entirely incorrect.

    In particular, I would like to note, however, that it wasn't just that Robin Hood robbed from "the rich" and gave to "the poor." Robin Hood robbed from the government that was actively abusing the serfs and returned to the serfs enough of what was taken from them (legally) so they could survive.

    One could make a case that just about every superhero that isn't in a setting where special laws have been introduced that make costumed crime-fighting have legal protections is CG, in that they value goodness and doing the right thing and helping others far and away above valuing obedience to the law. The law - particularly in America - provides all sorts of protections to alleged criminals which superheroes often blatantly ignore. It is even a common plot point and justification for why the superhero is needed: he can do what the police can't (or won't), and a good chunk of the "why" tends to revolve around the fact that the mob boss types hide behind armies of lawyers who use the law to keep the police stymied.

    That's what CG is: it is a value of what is right and moral above what is traditional or legal. CG types care about freedom on a personal level, and, because Good recognizes others as having value and rights similar to one's own, they value freedom of others. CG will tend to lean towards expecting laws to be abused, and preferring it if everybody just tries to get along. They also are the first to think their own judgment of right is all that matters, and to resort to force to thwart evil and protect the innocent. They respect talking, negotiation, and agreements only insofar as those methods are achieving results that protect the rights of all involved. They find little value in "rights" that exist because they're spelled out on paper somewhere, and instead believe in a few inherent ones. Most commonly, CG-types live by the golden rule. They do unto others as they would have done unto them, and they only impose their will when it seems that those upon whom they would impose said will are actively harming others who don't deserve it.

    CN will veer away from the golden rule, but not completely. Neutral characters are willing to act with more selfishness, and CN ones willingly take advantage of situations with no regard for ethics, so long as they don't think they're hurting somebody else TOO much.

    The CG "thief" type might steal food to survive or to feed his family, but he will likely do so only after pursuing means that don't involve wronging the guy from whom he steals. The CN "thief" type will likely avoid stealing from those whom the theft would hurt, but would see NO problem with stealing $1000 from a multimillionaire. He'll not even feel the pinch, right? The CG person would need some justification for why the multimillionaire deserves to lose that wealth, even if he wouldn't notice it missing. The CN person needs no more justification than "it doesn't really hurt anybody."

    The CE person would take the stuff even if it was a man's life savings he was planning to use to try to keep his daughter from having to drop out of college due to lack of funds.

    In truth, the NE person would do exactly the same. The differences between NE and CE tend to lie in how they interact with others and with organizations. CE types make bad team players. They obey nothing but their own id. They might plan, scheme, and even ally with people, but they WILL backstab their allies the moment it would be beneficial to do so. Even the most savvy of them will do this, eventually, when the prize is high enough and the risk of being punished by those they betray low enough.

    NE people may not be the most loyal around, but they will at least hold to agreements for no reason other than protecting their reputation for doing so. They will honor rules and traditions as long as it's not too inconvenient. Like the CE and LE types, they have no compunction against hurting others for their own profit or amusement, but they likely won't backstab you unless the reward is SO high and the risk SO low that they can't see continuing their association with you as being equally beneficial. (CE types are more likely to go for the betrayal just out of perverse desire to be free of the obligation to adhere to the alliance.)

    This is'nt to say CE types are stupid. They may not even be impulsive. But they actively chafe at being beholden to any rules or strictures other than their own desires, and will ignore any whose consequences they do not fear. Thus, they can only be found in organizations where the strong lead the weak, and then only because they fear the consequences of getting out of line more than they want whatever perceived reward breaking that organization's rules would get them. NE types would not chafe necessarily at being held back by rules for the rules' sake; they would instead break the rules only when it had significant perceived benefit, rather than merely seeming like an opportunity that costs little.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Segev View Post
    It is interesting and, I think, important to note that the majority of the "CG" examples seem to be freedom fighters/revolutionaries to one degree or another.
    Do Han Solo, Malcolm Reynolds, Indiana Jones, MacGyver, Harry Dresden, Doctor Who, and Wolverine are not ''freedom fighters/revolutionaries'', but guess you could call them all ''rebels''.


    More:

    Lawful Evil-Dexter
    Chaotic Evil-The Red Skull, Simon Phoenix (from Demolition Man), Sylar(Heroes), Bender(Futurama)
    Chaotic Neutral-Fox Mulder
    Neutral Good-Flash Gordon, John Carter
    Chaotic Good-Dr. Cox(Scrubs), Kyle(Southpark)

  14. - Top - End - #74
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    The problem I have with assigning comic book characters alignments is that so many of them have been written by different authors, sometimes with wildly varying personalities and outlooks.

    I've mentioned this in other alignment discussions, but I tend to treat the Law-Chaos axis as being how you decide what to do: law is rules-based, and chaos is whim-based. Looking at the exemplars, modrons and inevitables are machines that always follow their programming. The more powerful they are, the more comprehensive and complex their programming, but their behavior is predictable and consistent. Slaads, on the other hand, are literally as likely to jump of a bridge as to cross it, but they're also equally likely to mate with it, try to destroy it, or compose an epic poem comparing it to the piece of dried snot it found in its nose. I think this fits well with the described fluff, but rather than merely listing attributes provides a metric with which you can measure any character.

    So, based on that, and choosing from my own favorite series, here are my suggestions.

    LG: Sam Vimes, Carrot (Discworld), UL and Durnik (Belgariad), Bevier (Elenium), Michael, Murphy, Uriel (Dresden Files)
    NG: Belgarion, Polgara, and Eriond (Belgariad), Harry (Dresden Files), Sephrenia, Sparhawk, Tynian, and Ulath (Elenium), Granny Weatherwax (Discworld)
    CG: Ce'nedra, Belgarath, and Beldin—though with CN tendencies (Belgariad), Molly (Dresden Files), Aphrael, Kalten, Ehlana (Elenium), Nanny Ogg (Discworld)
    LN: Vetinari (Diskworld), Titania (Dresden Files), Mirtai, Kurik, and the Bhelliom (Elenium), Zakath—though starting LE (Belgariad)
    TN: The Gatekeeper, the Mothers, the Archive, Demonreach (Dresden Files)
    CN: Bob, Thomas, and the 'Za Lord's Guard (Dresden Files), Talen (Elenium), Barak, Silk, and Velvet (Belgariad) Nobby and Rincewind (Discworld)
    LE: Mab, Leannansidhe, Marcone, Kincaid, Lara, (Dresden Files), Torak and most Grolims (Belgariad), Annias and Cyrgon (Elenium)
    NE: Martel and Zalasta (Elenium), Corpsetaker, Nicodemus, and Lasciel (Dresden Files)
    CE: Azash, the troll gods, Krager, and Adus (Elenium), Maeve, the Red Cap, Lartessa, and the Naaglooshii (Dresden Files)
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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    Quote Originally Posted by Callista View Post
    Put Javert in as Lawful Neutral. In my mind, he's the archetype of LN.

    Stay far, far away from Batman. You'll only start arguments. For that matter avoid any character with multiple writers. Peter Pan, for example: He ranges from CG to CE, depending on the source!
    A clear CE in JM Barrie's works, though. He kills innocents for fun, betrays his friends on a whim, forgets those who he once loved with no remorse, nearly kills his own friends for minor slights but is stopped and by Wendy, and the books pretty much state that since the Lost Boys continue to age he murders them all every few years and starts over. If he isn't CE, I don't know who is.

    Quote Originally Posted by jedipotter View Post
    Do Han Solo, Malcolm Reynolds, Indiana Jones, MacGyver, Harry Dresden, Doctor Who, and Wolverine are not ''freedom fighters/revolutionaries'', but guess you could call them all ''rebels''.
    I would peg those as Good leaning CNs. Though for some it can veer into CG territory depending on the writer/incarnation of the character. The two more recent Doctors, for instance, are probably CG. At various points in the EU Han Solo is Good.

    Quote Originally Posted by Angelalex242 View Post
    Tony Stark as LE? Maybe in Civil War, but he regrets that IMMENSELY later. He's an Avenger, and he's after more then profit in life.

    Magneto, on the other hand, is usually LE. With some LN tendencies, as he's been known to heel face turn.

    NG...Thor, maybe? Clearly willing to ignore his dad when he thinks his dad his wrong, but equally willing to uphold Asgard or even Earth any way he can.

    TN: 'Random NPC'.

    NE: I'll nominate Lex Luthor. While he appears to be LE, much of the time, he also does many Chaotic deeds in his mad hunt to kill Superman dead. That's all he cares about, and he'll use any means, Lawful, Chaotic, or otherwise to see the Kryptonian brought down.
    In Civil War he murders and locks up heroes indefinitely without a trial in a place that makes G-Bay look like a minimum security spa-prison because they didn't immediately agree with him, yeah, I'd say he was LE there. A shame, there were interesting moral points on both sides but the registration just went so bat-guano crazy almost immediately and lost almost all sympathy.

    Quote Originally Posted by jedipotter View Post
    Just be careful. If you say ''Wolverine is CG'', lots of them might fanatically want to be that alignment based on what they don't know about Wolverine. Like "Way cool I'll be CG and cut up and kill anyone who looks at me the wrong way..woo hoo''. Even though Wolverine does not do that......
    Wolverine can't be Good for the same reason Marv can't be Good. They both enjoy killing way too much and both indulge torture of those they think deserve it, (and enjoy torturing said individuals,) too often.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cruiser1 View Post
    Here's another Firefly version:

    The Operative would also be Lawful Evil. He even admits he is Evil, using that exact word to describe himself. Just because he thinks Evil men are necessary, doesn't mean he is Neutral. To quote Rust Cohle, "The world needs bad men. We keep the other bad men from the door." Inara would be a better choice for LN.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelalex242 View Post
    It's still out of character with everything he does in every other story arc.

    You'd have to show me an example of LE behavior in an arc after Civil War to prove your point. Otherwise, it's like he donned a helm of opposite alignment, took it off, now he's himself again.
    So an even that happen almost 8 years after the end of Civil War was part of Civil War and not an example of a behavior pattern?

    Civil War Ended in 05. Spiderman: One More Day happened in 07. Planet Hulk was in 05 or 06 if I remember right, and World War Hulk was in 06 or 07. The Runaway's Issue I was talking about was somewhere between 05-07, and the bit with Thor was between 06-09 if I recall right. And Avengers vs. X-men was in 2012.

    Pretty much ALL of them were after Civil War was officially over, and Cap was Officially dead, and Stark was officially the victor in Civil War and running the show.


    Yes, in order to make ANY of this happen Marvel had to disregard 50+ years of canon characterization, but Joe Quesada is by no means above doing it. Just like he's not above criticizing DC for doing actual Reboots every 30-50 years or so to at least attempt to fix canon problems or make fundamental canon changes to characters by making all new canon. And he STILL hasn't fixed at least half those incidents, so, yeah, he doesn't get to say "I got better." Cap coming back happened in spite of him, not because of it. The X-men canon is still in tatters from that event, and don't even get me started on the state of Spiderman's Canon form the end of One More Day going forward.

    That said, I will offer up this much defense for Tony and Only this much Defense, he may be a LE bastard, but more and more of the marvel hero's are going that route right along with him, and the few that arn't are becoming NE or CE.

    To put it another way, I use to like marvel's comics as a whole. At this point, I'm down too

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    Deadpool.

    That's it. They've utterly destroyed too many of there characters on editorial mandates like One More Day and Civil War for me to like these people any more. And they refuse to go back and fix it or to just do a freaking Reboot and apologize for making it necessary. It's why they basically don't see any actual money form me any more for there comics when at one time they had a LOT of my entertainment budget.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff the Green View Post
    The problem I have with assigning comic book characters alignments is that so many of them have been written by different authors, sometimes with wildly varying personalities and outlooks.
    This. This is a great point.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff the Green View Post
    I've mentioned this in other alignment discussions, but I tend to treat the Law-Chaos axis as being how you decide what to do: law is rules-based, and chaos is whim-based. Looking at the exemplars, modrons and inevitables are machines that always follow their programming. The more powerful they are, the more comprehensive and complex their programming, but their behavior is predictable and consistent. Slaads, on the other hand, are literally as likely to jump of a bridge as to cross it, but they're also equally likely to mate with it, try to destroy it, or compose an epic poem comparing it to the piece of dried snot it found in its nose. I think this fits well with the described fluff, but rather than merely listing attributes provides a metric with which you can measure any character.
    Lol. Btw, the plural of "slaad" is "slaadi".
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff the Green View Post
    So, based on that, and choosing from my own favorite series, here are my suggestions.

    *trimmed for space*
    Man, another David Eddings fan. Haven't met on in awhile.

    I'd like to disagree with a few of your suggestions on those books, though. Belgarion I'd say is Lawful Good, just like Durnik. Namely because he generally "acts as a good person is expected to". He enjoys fighting a bit more than the average person (that would be the Alorn in him), and occasionally displays a temper, but none of those are alignment-defining traits.
    On that note, I'm surprised you mentioned some of the pantheon, but left out Mandorallen. He's pretty much the paragon of Lawful Good. You also omitted Hettar, who I'd say is TN, Relg, who's LG, and Sadi, who I think fits as LN. I never cared much for Lelldorin, but I guess I'd have to call him CG, but only because "Chaotic Airhead with a Heart of Gold" isn't an alignment.

    Beldin as CG? Chaotic, certainly, but where's the "concern for the dignity of sentient beings"? Just because he's a disciple of Aldur doesn't automatically make him Good (see Belzedar). I think Beldin's straight-up CN, he's just on the good guys' side.

    You know, I was initially going to contest making Barak and Silk CN, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized you're probably right on the money there. In kind of an inverse of the Wreck-It-Ralph quote...Barak and Silk are good men, that doesn't necessarily mean that they're "Good" men. They're loyal, patriotic, and even Silk has ethical boundaries he won't cross, but neither one shows much selflessness (outside those immediately closest to them).

    Sorry, but I must have read those books 15 times MINIMUM since I was about 12 (so...over the last 19 years or so), and I remember most nitpicky details.

    The Elenium and Tamuli I've probably only read like 5 times in that same time span, and I think you got a lot of them right. Except Sparhawk. Sparhawk, too is Lawful Good. In fact, I tend to use Sparhawk when explaining alignment to people familiar with the setting, as an example of how one can be LG, and still be a total bad***.

    Vanion got left out (had to look up his name, almost forgot it). He's pretty clearly LG. It's hard to make any of the church knights not Lawful, but I think you're right about Tynian, Ulath, and Kalten.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RedMage125 View Post
    Lol. Btw, the plural of "slaad" is "slaadi".
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    I'm not sure Ehlana is CG. Though it is amusing to remember her wandering around with a prince consort's crown in her pocket. "Gonna get him! Sparhawk is MINE!" She does reluctantly submit to the church's authority when she has to, however, so she might be NG.

    I thought Martel was LE and Annias was NE. Martel seems like a lot more honorable a dude then Annias ever was.

    Aphrael deciding to make herself Sparhawk's daughter just cause 'why not?' is certainly CG of her though. Ehlana was rendered infertile by the darestim superpoison, but divine override still overrides. Picking Talen out as a boyfriend 'just because' is also pretty CG. And then, "I'm gonna have to grow up, aren't I?" "Yeeeeah, Elenes are a little pickier about things like that..."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelalex242 View Post
    I'm not sure Ehlana is CG. Though it is amusing to remember her wandering around with a prince consort's crown in her pocket. "Gonna get him! Sparhawk is MINE!" She does reluctantly submit to the church's authority when she has to, however, so she might be NG.

    I thought Martel was LE and Annias was NE. Martel seems like a lot more honorable a dude then Annias ever was.

    Aphrael deciding to make herself Sparhawk's daughter just cause 'why not?' is certainly CG of her though. Ehlana was rendered infertile by the darestim superpoison, but divine override still overrides. Picking Talen out as a boyfriend 'just because' is also pretty CG. And then, "I'm gonna have to grow up, aren't I?" "Yeeeeah, Elenes are a little pickier about things like that..."
    Just because she "submitted to a higher authority" doesn't make her not Chaotic. She's a sovereign ruler, yes, that makes her pat of a legal system, but keep in mind, her method of ruling is along the lines of "screw the rules, we're doing it this way". And while she did submit to the Church's authority, she only did so through bargaining with the Archprelate, something most rulers would not even think of doing. It wasn't a meek "Yes, Sarabi, as you say". It was more along the lines of "I'll go along with it, if and only if you marry me and Sparhawk", something that Sparhawk was extremely reluctant about, and she knew that a direct order from the Archprelate would quell any objections he could try and muster.

    Martel honorable? Yes, his death came in a honorable duel with Sparhawk, but did you forget what a sick SOB he could be? He admits to working "only for money", he "believes in nothing", and commits numerous atrocities including all the unrest in the southern nation (I forget the name), murdering the old man there, he set fire to an nunnery, making sure all died within, just because Arissa was bitter about being sent there. Even during the siege the "white flag" he used for parlay was the cape of a dead Cyrinic knight. Not to mention, he was exiled to begin with after being caught participating in dark Styric rituals to Azash. Martel is a character who was once honorable, and occasionally shows regret at his lost nobility. But ultimately, he's a heartless monster. His death scene, in the arms of "the only two people he's ever loved", was sort of a final farewell to the once-honorable Pandion, and saw him express a modicrum of humility and humanity, which is about the only examples of those he ever evokes through the whole series.

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    Default Re: Alignments via examples.

    The Lego Movie provided a few good examples. Emmett, who lives his life by following the directions, is Lawful Neutral. Wyldstyle and Morgan Freedman are both Chaotic Good, looking to protect people from oppression, and encourage individuality. Unikitty is Chaotic Neutral: Also no consistency!. Lord Business is Lawful Evil, and seeks to force people to conform to his vision even it means effectively destroying them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by da_chicken View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by da_chicken View Post
    I want to thank you all for proving my point.
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    Quote Originally Posted by RedMage125 View Post
    I'd like to disagree with a few of your suggestions on those books, though. Belgarion I'd say is Lawful Good, just like Durnik. Namely because he generally "acts as a good person is expected to". He enjoys fighting a bit more than the average person (that would be the Alorn in him), and occasionally displays a temper, but none of those are alignment-defining traits.

    ...

    The Elenium and Tamuli I've probably only read like 5 times in that same time span, and I think you got a lot of them right. Except Sparhawk. Sparhawk, too is Lawful Good. In fact, I tend to use Sparhawk when explaining alignment to people familiar with the setting, as an example of how one can be LG, and still be a total bad***.
    I think both Sparhawk and Belgarion have lawful tendencies, but they're both too willing to say "screw the rules; I'm doing what's right" to truly be LG. In particular, they're both quite happy to step outside of their authority, delay their quests, use dishonorable combat techniques, and lie, cheat, and steal to help the oppressed and accomplish their missions. Note how well Sparhawk goes along with Kalten's underhanded suggestions of how to deal with Ehlana, his comfort and talent for deception that very much isn't within the Church Knights' bailiwick, and his relationship with Lilah, and Belgarion's general disregard for tradition and honor (e.g. forcing Mandorallen and whatsherface to marry or cheating at the joust). While Sparhawk did make vows and generally follows them, what he chooses to do is just as often driven by a sudden desire to kill Krager, inconvenience someone who offends his morality, or please his wife as by any rules. Belgarion equally has a diligence instilled in him by his Sendarian upbringing, but what he chooses to do is as much about what he wants to do as what's expected.

    Quote Originally Posted by RedMage125 View Post
    On that note, I'm surprised you mentioned some of the pantheon, but left out Mandorallen. He's pretty much the paragon of Lawful Good. You also omitted Hettar, who I'd say is TN, Relg, who's LG, and Sadi, who I think fits as LN. I never cared much for Lelldorin, but I guess I'd have to call him CG, but only because "Chaotic Airhead with a Heart of Gold" isn't an alignment.

    Beldin as CG? Chaotic, certainly, but where's the "concern for the dignity of sentient beings"? Just because he's a disciple of Aldur doesn't automatically make him Good (see Belzedar). I think Beldin's straight-up CN, he's just on the good guys' side.
    I thought I included Mandorallen, actually. Sadi I thought I put in CN because he really has no credo he adheres to but instead does what's convenient, necessary, or pleasant, much like Silk. The others I left out because I wasn't sure where to categorize them.

    Beldin I put in CG mostly on Polgara's testimony and the degree to which The Grolims' perversions offend him—far more than they do Belgarath. According to Polgara, and as evidenced somewhat in the prequels, he's by nature quite caring and gentle, but deliberately suppresses that when necessary. His fascination with red hot hooks may push him further into CN, though Urvon probably deserves it.
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    Not necessarily.

    Is there anything Sparhawk did that a Paladin could've fallen for? Is there anything Belgarion did that a Paladin could've fallen for?

    Also remember the trial of Roy here in OOTS. The Deva basically told him he was Lawful Good because he tried to be, and though he made mistakes, he qualified for Mt. Celestia based on trying and succeeding at least most of the time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelalex242 View Post
    Not necessarily.

    Is there anything Sparhawk did that a Paladin could've fallen for? Is there anything Belgarion did that a Paladin could've fallen for?

    Also remember the trial of Roy here in OOTS. The Deva basically told him he was Lawful Good because he tried to be, and though he made mistakes, he qualified for Mt. Celestia based on trying and succeeding at least most of the time.
    Completely ignoring his uncle's advice about screwing with the weather in such a way that life as we knew it would've been in danger without people puts months of work into cleaning up the mess? Are non-good acts still non-good when necessity later admits to having made him do it subtly?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angelalex242 View Post
    Not necessarily.

    Is there anything Sparhawk did that a Paladin could've fallen for? Is there anything Belgarion did that a Paladin could've fallen for?

    Also remember the trial of Roy here in OOTS. The Deva basically told him he was Lawful Good because he tried to be, and though he made mistakes, he qualified for Mt. Celestia based on trying and succeeding at least most of the time.
    Of course they don't. Paladins don't fall for individual chaotic acts or incidences of chaotic outlook, only for a consistent failure to adhere to lawful principles and outlook.

    And I'd argue Belgarion and Sparhawk dont try to be LG. Good, sure, but both are openly skeptical, even irritated by others' lawfulness and value ingenuity, spontaneity, and individual freedom to be truly LG even if they do take their duties seriously. Think about how well they get along with Talen and Silk and accompany them on their "adventures".

    Edit:
    Quote Originally Posted by ryu View Post
    Completely ignoring his uncle's advice about screwing with the weather in such a way that life as we knew it would've been in danger without people puts months of work into cleaning up the mess? Are non-good acts still non-good when necessity later admits to having made him do it subtly?
    I didn't think he had his grandfather's advice about messing with the weather before he did it, and once Belgarath told him what a mess he made he didn't do it again.
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    A paladin doesn't fall for non good acts.

    He falls for flat out EVIL acts. The situation in question doesn't quite rate as evil. So he's fine.

    And at any rate, Bhellion's performance review when the darn thing disappears suggests he chose wisely.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff the Green View Post
    Of course they don't. Paladins don't fall for individual chaotic acts or incidences of chaotic outlook, only for a consistent failure to adhere to lawful principles and outlook.

    And I'd argue Belgarion and Sparhawk dont try to be LG. Good, sure, but both are openly skeptical, even irritated by others' lawfulness and value ingenuity, spontaneity, and individual freedom to be truly LG even if they do take their duties seriously. Think about how well they get along with Talen and Silk and accompany them on their "adventures".

    Edit:


    I didn't think he had his grandfather's advice about messing with the weather before he did it, and once Belgarath told him what a mess he made he didn't do it again.
    Oh he most certainly did. If there is one thing about that sequence it's that belgarath said quite explicitly that you don't screw around with the weather without at LEAST a millennium of study beforehand. It was on the big list of no presented when the whole will and word thing was still a pretty fresh development story-wise. Other most important things involved no unmaking things, no taking off the locket, and no attempting to bring back the de... Actually garion is totally chaotic. The boy screwed most of the rules.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff the Green View Post
    I thought I included Mandorallen, actually. Sadi I thought I put in CN because he really has no credo he adheres to but instead does what's convenient, necessary, or pleasant, much like Silk. The others I left out because I wasn't sure where to categorize them.

    Beldin I put in CG mostly on Polgara's testimony and the degree to which The Grolims' perversions offend him—far more than they do Belgarath. According to Polgara, and as evidenced somewhat in the prequels, he's by nature quite caring and gentle, but deliberately suppresses that when necessary. His fascination with red hot hooks may push him further into CN, though Urvon probably deserves it.
    Sadi seems to do what's convenient and pleasant, but he's also extremely methodical and practical. His methodology is very lawful. His lifestyle in Nyissa (although it involved heavy drug use, such drug use was a cultural idiosyncrasy of all Nyissans) was only possible because of that discipline, which allowed him to survive all the intrigue and plotting of his fellow eunuchs.

    Beldin may hate Grolims, but he never really shows any compassion, concern for others, selflessness, and all the other hallmarks of "Good". He's solidly on the same side as the white hats, but that doesn't make him Good.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff the Green View Post
    I think both Sparhawk and Belgarion have lawful tendencies, but they're both too willing to say "screw the rules; I'm doing what's right" to truly be LG. In particular, they're both quite happy to step outside of their authority, delay their quests, use dishonorable combat techniques, and lie, cheat, and steal to help the oppressed and accomplish their missions. Note how well Sparhawk goes along with Kalten's underhanded suggestions of how to deal with Ehlana, his comfort and talent for deception that very much isn't within the Church Knights' bailiwick, and his relationship with Lilah, and Belgarion's general disregard for tradition and honor (e.g. forcing Mandorallen and whatsherface to marry or cheating at the joust). While Sparhawk did make vows and generally follows them, what he chooses to do is just as often driven by a sudden desire to kill Krager, inconvenience someone who offends his morality, or please his wife as by any rules. Belgarion equally has a diligence instilled in him by his Sendarian upbringing, but what he chooses to do is as much about what he wants to do as what's expected.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff the Green View Post
    And I'd argue Belgarion and Sparhawk dont try to be LG. Good, sure, but both are openly skeptical, even irritated by others' lawfulness and value ingenuity, spontaneity, and individual freedom to be truly LG even if they do take their duties seriously. Think about how well they get along with Talen and Silk and accompany them on their "adventures".
    Sparhawk and Belgarion's "divergences" from Lawful activity are exactly in the same vein as Roy's in OotS, especially as far as how Sparhawk behaves in regards to "acting outside the baliwick of a Church Knight". He still keeps his word of honor when given (allowing Krager to live in the Tamuli), he still refrains from truly immoral behavior. His relationship with Lilah is no exception. He was in exile from his homeland, and both of them fully understood what that relationship was and what it was not. It pains me to say this, but the Book of Erotic Fantasy, despite being mostly garbage, has some interesting treatises on how various races and alignments handle things like love and sex. Lawful Good alignment does not preclude sex outside of marriage. The book even has a scene where a paladin picks up a bard in a tavern for a one night stand. Sparhawk never deceived Lilah about their relationship, so I don't see how it in any way counts as "non-lawful behavior". Belgarion's "delays" of his quests were actually furthering the quest along, he began to trust in the Prophecy to guide them to where they needed to go. Although, yes, he does say that if he could get his son back sooner that he would, that's not something that really is a reflection of "non-lawfulness" in his alignment, but rather simply a father's devotion to his son. And forcing the marriage between Mandorallen and the woman he had loved for over a decade was to ensure peace and stability, as well as to force his friend to abandon the melancholy love tragedy he had been in the habit of living in for all that time. He made his friend happy, and ended a war in one stroke. And the "traditions he abandoned" was more in the nature of insurance that everything was done, as Arends being what they are, who knows what would have happened if he allowed any further delays.

    I really don't know what you mean about "dishonorable fighting". Sparhawk is certainly an honorable warrior. And Belgarion's swordfighting techniques are a bit unorthodox (a blend of Cherek, Algar, and Arendish styles), but not "dishonorable". And of course, any swordfight he gets into is automatically "unfair" by virtue of Iron-Grip's sword being capable of slicing through just about anything. But I hardly think that constitutes "dishonorable".

    What you need to understand is that people are not 100% true to their alignment 100% of the time. Few people are even consistent from day to day. That's straight from the RAW on alignment. Yes, both men occasionally do things outside their normal behavior patterns, but that's true of anyone. Belgarion's slaughter of the Mallorean deserters in King of the Murgos, for example. He lost his temper, and decided to dish out some vigilante justice. Not normally his MO, and cerainly not a Lawful or Good act, but even Durnik approved, and he's the one who admonished Polgara for all the sneaking around and deceit that they were engaging in on their quest.

    Quote Originally Posted by ryu View Post
    Oh he most certainly did. If there is one thing about that sequence it's that belgarath said quite explicitly that you don't screw around with the weather without at LEAST a millennium of study beforehand. It was on the big list of no presented when the whole will and word thing was still a pretty fresh development story-wise. Other most important things involved no unmaking things, no taking off the locket, and no attempting to bring back the de... Actually garion is totally chaotic. The boy screwed most of the rules.
    You should probably re-read your copy of Guardians of the West again, because Jeff is correct. Belgarath gave Garion the speech about the weather, calling him a blockhead and telling him he needed at least 1000 years of study was AFTER Garion started the storm in Aerendia. In fact, it was the cleanup FROM that event that led to that talking-to.
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