Hi! Can you explain to me the king and lionheart trope and how it relates to the machiavel/messiah trope? Thank you!
ahh okay this is a tricky one, because king/lionheart is not my trope in the sense that while I love it, it’s not my thing, ya know?
messiah/machiavel on the other hand is so entirely my thing, tbh it probably shouldn’t even be considered in the same category as a trope? it’s more of a personal term/tag i made up with the inimicable mal (who gave me lots of clever + witty + horribly mean advice for this answer). but i shall endeavour to explain what i - personally - mean by messiah+machiavel and how/when it intersects with king+lionheart.
SO it can definitely be a subset of king/lionheart with a particular twist of context. you see for me, messiah/machiavel is always in a political context of some kind. it’s about that separation of skillsets in the political context: the charismatic shining-bright leader of people, and the vicious (often-but-not-necessarily-violent) cunning enforcer.
so to my understanding (which could be wrong!), king/lionheart has a couple of few components:
- a) that status difference, where one of them really is a king, or of some other status defined by outside forces, and
- b) a consuming, fiercely loyal mutual love that is
- c) informed by their status difference so you end up having one being a swordarm/right hand type (lionheart) to the king, but behind the scenes that imbalance is kind of subverted/overcome by the love and respect they have for each other?
messiah + machiavel is something that can overlap with king/lionheart - where that emotional core of the dynamic exists - but not necessarily. it’s more about the political context + skillsets involved; leadership (messiah) + enforcement (machiavel).