Lawful Neutral

"I am the Law"

-Judge Dredd

Continuing my alignment lists we come to Lawful Neutral, which represents one of two things: either a character who is more concerned with upholding order and obeying the rules than with being good or evil, or a character who is a part of some kind of organized system/hierarchy but is too morally gray to be definitively good or evil. Lawful Neutral characters tend to be most concerned with upholding the laws of the land and while they will likely prioritize a clear threat/evil over punishing a jaywalker, that doesn't mean they don't also want to catch the jaywalker if at all possible. A Lawful Neutral character would certainly oppose evildoers, but they would also be just as likely to oppose heroes who break the law, and are the not kind of people to be swayed by tears or coins.

List items

  • The source of the page quote, Judge Dredd is the PERSONIFICATION of this alignment, being most concerned with maintaining law and "order" in Mega-City One along with his fellow judges and not being terribly concerned with being a nice guy but also battling back genuinely evil forces and threats. Ergo, Lawful Neutral.

  • Judge Dredd may be the text-book example of Lawful Neutral these days but Inspector Javert defined the alignment first, being an inspector who is hellbent with catching and arresting the protagonist for being a criminal but also being honestly not that bad or good outside of this. Ultimately his loyalty is to the law.

  • DC's resident champion of this alignment, being the angelic spirit of God's vengeance and more specifically dark judgment and divine retribution. He has no use for compassion, only for punishing evildoers. However he is also fair to a degree, as he does not harm the innocent.

  • The Strategic Homeland Intervention Espionage and Logistics Directive is a world-wide peacekeeping organization whose stated goal is to maintain peace and order around the globe, but at the same time they are not above indulging in some ethically sketchy and downright ruthless behavior. Not to mention that they have hindered the superheroes efforts nearly as often as they have aided them due to their not liking how most superheroes operate outside the law.

  • In his more morally ambiguous depictions.

  • Even moreso than most SHIELD agents, Maria Hill personifies this alignment, being totally, completely obsessed with maintaining order and taking her job so ridiculously seriously that she makes the no-nonsense Nick Fury look completely lax by comparison.

  • Major SHIELD and Government operative who is usually depicted as being most interested in maintaining order and keeping her chosen nation secure. While I could probably say she's Lawful Good, some more gray depictions of the character slip more into this.

  • In Avengers Earth's Mightiest Heroes. Her mainstream counterpart is more Lawful Evil, at least in her initial appearances.

  • A sub-division of SHIELD dealing with extraterrestrial threats specifically.

  • Another sub-division of SHIELD, this one meant to deal with...zombies.

  • During the "Disassembled Era" (From Avengers Disassembled to Siege) where he became a self-righteous and occasionally fascistic jerk and also a jingoist government lapdog who fought and imprisoned his old friends. Not exactly the finest point in Tony's character history.

  • The modern version frequently turns into this due to all-too often being a self-righteous jerk, just like Iron Man. That's two big brains who got made unlikable.

  • Much like Reed and Tony, he becomes this whenever he's turned into a jerk.

  • More or less the ultimate government lap-dog and very much a military man through and through, USAgent is a lot more jingoist and conservative than Captain America, and while not quite a bad man, he's definitely not the nicest of folks either. In his mind, maintaining order and loyalty to his country are more important than anything else.

  • Considering how this was formed in the aftermath of the Civil War and passing of the Superhuman Registration Act, that's a yes.

  • Initially they were pretty content to do whatever the government told them to do, even when it involved some ethically sketchy actions in the Middle-East. After that led to a bunch of supervillain terrorists with an axe to grind invading the country, they made the transition to more Neutral Good.

  • The Ultimate Marvel Universe version for a time

  • One of the chief members of the Authority. Sadistic, brutal, and essentially ruling the world, Midnighter and his buddies honestly come VERY close to being Lawful Evil.

  • More of the same

  • At best, given that they take over the planet and enforce their will upon it's populace but are still arguably well-meaning while doing so.

  • Explicitly meant to be this, though they can and often do slip more into Lawful Evil depending on the story.

  • Given that he FOUNDED the Judges and that Judge Dredd's DNA is based off of his, this is a definite yes.

  • The second Chief Judge

  • The third Chief Judge. Now granted, given that this was the Chief Judge during Dredd's "lighter and softer" days he might have been more Lawful Good, but for now I feel safe listing him as this.

  • Chief Judge number five. And if you were wondering what happened to number four, he was corrupt and as a member of Judge Dredd's rogues gallery was rather evil.

  • Both the sixth and eighth Chief Judge. She starts out as this before increasing madness causes her to inch more into Lawful Evil territory. She ultimately pulls herself back from this though and ends life more True Neutral.

  • Chief Judge number seven and as one of the more conservative ones is in-between this and Lawful Evil.

  • Chief Judge number nine

  • One of the many to bear the title of Chief Judge, which is a position that pretty much requires one to be Lawful Neutral.

  • More of the same

  • And another one. This one in particular fits on the account of having both his good moments and his bad moments and all the while being firmly Lawful.

  • Comes with the territory, though she's more Lawful Good in the movie.

  • While the various villainous alternate depictions of Sable are Neutral Evil by virtue of being self-interested, ruthless mercenaries, finding an alignment for 616 Silver Sable was a tough call. I ultimately decided on this one because of her extreme patriotism and devotion to her home country of Symkaria and how she clearly respects it's authority and in many ways works for it by hunting down dangerous terrorists and nazi war criminals. Her code of honor and picking her targets carefully also lends further credence to the idea of her being Lawful, even if I have made clear that Lawful characters aren't the only ones with code of honor. Even so, I feel this is ultimately the best alignment choice for her. One might argue that her hunting down bad guys exclusively would make her good, but her coldness and at times ruthlessness make her lean more towards Neutral rather than Good.

  • Pre Character Development, as she is a loyal and high-ranking member of an organized hierarchy (Cerberus) but at the same time is really not a bad person (especially when compared to so many others in Cerberus) and as such is more this alignment.

  • Let me tell you, finding an alignment for Thane Krios was not an easy task. I ultimately settled on this one for him in his early years, when he was still overtly loyal to the Hanar and respected their authority, and also killed evil people in the name of making the world a more peaceful (and thus orderly) place. He also still had his code and scruples back then too. By the time you actually recruit him I'd say he's become more Neutral Good.

  • Usually seen as this, and indeed she shows many of the signs, such as complete, inflexible adherence to her Justicar Code. That in turn forces her to see things in very black and white extremes and to adhere to various technicalities and regulations that often do more harm than good. She herself even seems to acknowledge this to a degree.

  • Might actually be more Neutral Evil or Lawful Evil depending on how she acts in the supplementary materials, but in ME 2 at least she seemed pretty benign to me for a supposed crime boss, and as she's the head honcho who represents the only thing resembling order on Omega yes I think I can list her as this.

  • In Mass Effects 2 and 3 where she becomes a mindlessly loyal (and whiny) Alliance drone, which stands in notable contrast to her more rebellious attitude in the first game. Even if you get her to trust you again I'd still say she qualifies as this.

  • Also in Mass Effect 2 though unlike Ashley (who remains pretty obnoxious) he can potentially come to his senses in 3 and become Lawful Good again.

  • As with most other Sci-Fi factions of it's ilk, though I would argue that the Alliance at least TRIES to be more Lawful Good. They just fail more often than not. They're never really evil though, so I think they ultimately fit this the best.

  • In it's early years when it was still part of the Alliance and did the dirty but necessary jobs the Alliance didn't want to be seen doing. Then they went rogue and became a whole lot worse...

  • The soldiers of the Galactic Republic who were bred and trained to be fanatically loyal and dedicated to said Republic and to follow orders without question, even when they could be ethically sketchy. Things only got worse when Order 66 was activated...

  • Some of the elite Clone Troopers of the war.

  • Pre Character Development he's a by-the-book kind of soldier who much prefers to follow orders even when he could afford not to.

  • When serving as an Imperial Officer he is technically on the bad guy side and dedicated to what he THINKS is the Empire's ideal (order), but is also by far one of the nicest and most moral individuals to ever call himself an Imperial. As such much like with Miranda in Cerberus, I feel pretty safe listing him as this.

  • Pretty much the same character mold as Sunber. Legitimately nice, kind person who just happens to be part of an evil organization's hierarchy. With her though it doesn't stick, and she comes to join the Rebellion, whereupon she becomes definitively good.

  • Okay yeah, he's on the bad guy side, but honestly Piett always seemed so benign compared to the average Imperial Officer that I could argue he's ultimately this. He's just not that evil compared to way too many other characters on that particular side, such as Tarkin, Ysanne Isard, and others.

  • Yet another dedicated member of the Empire who is too nice and bereft of villainous acts to qualify as evil. He respects Darth Vader and Galen Marek's authority as well (when he's not trying to kill the latter that is!) and thusly I do feel he is Lawful Neutral.

  • Insanely loyal to Emperor Palpatine, which would normally make him Lawful Evil. But considering that he did have some measure of honor and scruples and like Piett is frankly is nowhere near as bad as many other imperials in terms of actions, I feel safe listing him as this.

  • Though initially he was fairly Lawful Good and ultimately becomes Lawful Evil, for a time he was in-between the two extremes and thus was this alignment.

  • Much like the Emperor's Royal Guards they are tasked solely with keeping the Emperor and his family safe. Nothing more, nothing less.

  • One of the chief Imperial Knights and a serious jerk if there ever was one. But still not evil in the end. Just not good either. Thus, Lawful Neutral.

  • What she initially appears to be before being exposed as a Lawful Evil hypocrite of the highest order. Also incidentally one of my three least favorite Star Wars characters of all time.

  • Though perhaps not wholly evil, Halsey is still concerned primarily with maintaining the order represented by the UNSC and is willing to cross some moral lines (such as the entire SPARTAN-II program) to do that.

  • The human government of the future who, as the many Insurrectionist Groups would attest, are far from perfect and are ultimately more concerned with maintaining some semblance of order than with being particularly good or evil.

  • The super-soldier who is generally content to follow his orders and maintain the law and order represented by he UNSC, whether it be against Insurrectionists, Covenant, or the Flood.

  • For most of Halo 2 he's somewhere in-between this and Lawful Evil before realizing that the Prophets have betrayed him and his race and from there making the transition to Lawful Good.

  • Mortal Kombat's resident follower of this alignment and a text-book example of it, as he is most obsessed with, you guessed it: ORDER. Not good or evil but just plain order.

  • Sort of this in the sense that he is very dedicated to his country and respects their authority (Lawful) and will fight against all of the other characters regardless of their moral compass (Neutral).

  • Could be seen to be this as a collective. While many of their individual members are of varying alignments, collectively the Gods of Olympus are a somewhat hierarchal organization that also imposes "order" on the world of Mortals and makes sure everyone stays in line, so I'd argue their (again, as a collective) Lawful, and as they're often much too morally gray to be clear-cut good or evil, I'd say they also constitute neutral. Thus, Lawful Neutral.

  • Usually depicted as this on the account of being the God of Justice and Rule and also being King of the Gods. Not to mention he tends to have a certain amount of moral ambiguity so...

  • For reasons similar to Zeus

  • In "Injustice Gods Among Us" where he does serve as a member of a fascist, totalitarian regime, but is also by far the most nicest, most reluctant, and most questioning member of said regime.

  • Also in Injustice Gods Among Us for the same reasons as Billy. After abandoning the Regime, I'd say he becomes more Chaotic Good.

  • In the DCAU and my DC Universe, where he's much more akin to Namor. On that note...

  • Sometimes this, namely whenever he prioritizes his own people's well-being over everyone else's (which is rather often) and preferring to stay out of surface-world conflicts all together (which is also a fairly common occurrence).

  • Depending on how you look at it, Ghost Rider could be this, seeing as how he sometimes serves as Marvel's equivalent to the Spectre as a supernatural entity serving a higher power (Satan/God) and punishing sinners without mercy but also sparing and even protecting innocents. Ultimately it depends on the writer.

  • During the character's "darker" phase, where he becomes more brutal in his attempts to protect the remnants of the Mutant race. People even start comparing him to Magneto as all the while Scott inches ever closer to Lawful Evil territory, which just so happens to be Magneto's most common alignment.

  • Alongside her boyfriend Emma is technically dedicated to the preservation of the Mutant race but also like (modern) Cyclops Emma is not above indulging in some ethically sketchy behavior now and again to get the job done.

  • Sometimes this, either in his less villainous incarnations and/or when working with the X-Men for a common good.

  • The Brotherhood at a time when they were wearing sheriff's badges. Definitely not even close to being good but also not quite evil either since they were no longer being actively malevolent. That said they did still sometimes antagonize the heroes...

    (NOTE: Credit to one of my commentators for suggesting I add them to the list).

  • Somewhere in-between this and Lawful Evil. The WATXM version is squarely Lawful Evil, at least for most of the show, and the movie version is also Lawful Evil I'd say. But if nothing else the 616 version I can probably see as being at least closer to this. He does also redeem himself in the end, at which point I'd say he becomes more Lawful Good.

  • One of Marvel's foremost examples of this alignment given that he feels totally and utterly compelled to obey the orders of the Shi'ar Empress, whomever that may be, EVEN WHEN HE KNOWS IT'S A BAD THING. So in other words, he will follow the orders of say, Deathbird just as much as he would Lilandra. And he doesn't even want to do it, but feels compelled to all the same.

  • In the Marvel Cinematic Universe more or less

  • As his name would kind of suggest

  • As the ultimate cosmic judge who passes judgment down on certain individuals and races regardless of their moral alignment and also only in the most dire of circumstances, this is a definite yes.

  • While I would argue very strongly for their being Lawful Evil, in my Marvel Universe at least they're more in-between this and Lawful Evil, rather than definitively one or the other.

  • They were initially text-book examples of this, clearly being more concerned with imposing order on the rest of the galaxy over anything else. But as time has worn on they have steadily become worse and worse and these days are more Lawful Evil. But at least initially they were this.

  • They're typically in-between this and Lawful Good but honestly I would argue they lean more towards this on the account of frequently prioritizing lawful over good, though that's usually the fault of the Guardian's silly directives.

  • They're pretty much meant to be Green Lanterns who are particularly loyal to the Guardians, and also turned into cyborgs that have lost most of their emotions and free will, with it instead being replaced with mindless loyal to the Guardians. So in all, they're being Lawful Neutral is pretty much invoked.

  • The very highest-ranked of all Green Lanterns and answering directly to the Guardians. Salaak also tends to be pretty tight-laced and a stickler for the rules as a result, which has sometimes brought him into conflict with the more rebellious Hal Jordan.

  • Depending on the version, the Queen of the Amazons is just as apathetic to the World of Man as the rest of her people, and as she leads them and represents the order on Paradise Island, I'd say that makes her this.

  • Though she sometimes inches more into Lawful Evil territory I would say that more often than not Waller is this due to a genuine desire to protect her country and maintain order and even sometimes working with the heroes rather than against them. It is this moral ambiguity that makes her more Lawful Neutral in my mind.

  • Seems to be this more often than not, having a world-view similar to Amanda Waller's and also working with her now and again, including in the DCAU.

  • While the individual members of the team are by and large not this alignment, the organization as a collective technically is, because it's a government organization that does government work and is bound by their authority. It just happens to be composed of various supervillains coerced into service.

  • More the DCAU version, but even so Bullock usually has at least some shades of this due to his frequent antagonizing of Batman despite his being an obvious necessity in a place like Gotham. This is in contrast to Gordon, who does good within the bounds of the law but also recognizes and appreciates Batman's assistance.

  • In the "Beware the Batman" show before going through character development and coming to (albeit reluctantly) accept Batman's assistance.

  • For most of the Amazing Spider-Man movie before he finally comes to accept Spider-Man's assistance. And then he dies. Go figure.

  • Almost like the Pirates of the Caribbean's answer to Inspector Javert, Norrington is a by-the-book kind of officer who is completely humorless and very much interested primarily in serving the crown and nothing else. This is even reflected in the first movie by both Governor Swann's line "Commodore Norrington is bound by the law" and also his own line in the same movie: "By remembering that I serve others Mr. Sparrow, not only myself."

  • As an agent of MI6 James Bond is tasked primarily with maintaining the order represented by the British Government and her allies, and though he can be just a bit of a loose cannon at times Bond does ultimately do exactly this. I suppose you could argue that as he consistently fights and defeats clear villains he's Lawful Good, but for now we'll leave him here, especially since an official D&D book cites him as this.

  • Initially in the JJ Abrams movie before going through Character Development.

  • The Angelina Jolie version, who lords over her forest domain as more or less it's queen but honestly isn't all that malevolent outside of the one curse she places on Aurora that she comes to regret.

  • The Disney version, who is kind of gruff, a bit of a control freak, and not the easiest chap to get along with, but when all is said and done he cares about the safety and well-being of his pack/clan, and also maintains order and cohesion among them. Thus, I'd say he fits this, with him maybe also leaning towards Lawful Good.

  • Generally presents himself as a rigid and uncompromising authority figure. As such I feel he is ultimately this, especially considering that he's meant to be more morally gray. Though I do think he ultimately ends as a Lawful Good character for most of the series he's more this alignment.

  • Initially in the movies

  • While she is a fairly benevolent, polite, and well meaning ruler (especially in relation to most other people in positions of power in Westeros) she is nevertheless also incredibly brutal and ruthless when provoked, challenged, or threatened, and has absolutely no tolerance for people who would oppose her. Between that and the whole "they can live in my world or die in their old one" bit, I'm kind of inclined to say she's this rather than straight up Lawful Good. She's definitely closer to that then most in her world are though, so I suppose that's worth something.

  • Seems to be this, though I'll admit she's also one of the ASOIAF/Game of Thrones characters I don't know as well.

  • In Kingdom of Heaven, and I'd argue probably in real life too, though he is also regarded as a fairly heroic and noble figure in the Muslim world and by many historians.

  • The real-life version, in contrast to the more sociopathic Lawful Evil version of him seen in Shakespeare's classic play.

  • Could be seen as being this, in a way. As Death he represents a brutal but arguably necessary part of nature that in perpetuating he maintains a kind of balance and natural order, and his also being impartial and not necessarily enjoying his job but doing it because it's (again) necessary could kind of make him this.