Trope-a-Day: Mr. Vice Guy

Mr. Vice Guy: Subverted, inasmuch as while it may be true by Earth standards, moralities vary considerably all over the Galaxy, and people vary with them.  Vice-wise, in particular, the Empire is pro-pride, pro-greed, enjoys gluttony and lust when it can get them and within reasonable bounds, and sees nothing wrong with properly aimed and justified wrath.  (Although it’s much harsher than we are on sloth and especially envy – to such an extent as they can really grasp that last concept.)  Pick your own choice of Vice Guys from that list.

Trope-a-Day: Modest Royalty

Modest Royalty: Subverted.  For a couple of reasons: first, the problem with leading people who aren’t impressed by claims of authority by right, or to put it another way, the problem with leading by virtue of your displayed arête, is that you have to display it.  Second, humility is not an Imperial virtue, and pride, however, is.  To be the part, it helps to look the part.

(This, of course, also applies to everyone who isn’t royalty, too.)

This is not, however, the Ermine Cape Effect, because Imperial runér from the Imperial Couple on down are the Royals Who Actually Do Something, and need to dress functionally sometimes.  It’s just the right kind of functional.  When doing the business of the Empire, for example, the Emperor may well be wearing something as relatively non-regalian as the US President’s suit, but it is undoubtedly hand-made (see Only Electric Sheep Are Cheap), constructed from the finest materials, and otherwise just as signifier-bearing.  In other words, they can do subtle; subtle is not a problem, because their people understand and know to look for subtle.  They just can’t do modest, because modest is just fundamentally wrong.

But compare: What’s Up, King Dude?

Trope-a-Day: Look On My Works, Ye Mighty, And Despair

Look On My Works, Ye Mighty, And Despair: As mentioned, the galaxy is an old place, positively littered with the ruins – and boasts – of civilizations dead and gone.

Curiously enough, this has not put an end to hubris in general, nor in specific stopped the Imperial Service routinely appending epithets like “great and glorious beyond all greatness and glory”, etc. ,etc., to the name of the Empire in their official mail any time they feel like rubbing someone’s nose in it a little.  After all, if anyone’s in a position to call them on it, they won’t be around to be called…

(Anyway, pride is a virtue, and we’re pretty sure it wasn’t pride, per se, that resulted in people running headlong into x-threats.)