Created By: Sceptre on April 10, 2011 Last Edited By: DennisDunjinman on August 30, 2013
Troped

This Means Warpaint

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Trope
A subtrope of Body Paint where, just before a conflict, a character will take some sort of paint -- or improvise with something closer to hand like mud or ashes -- and apply it just below the eyes. The effect is something like Tribal Face Paint or army camouflage, and the implication is clear: The Gloves are Off.

Sports players, especially for American Football, often do this during matches. Ostensibly, this is to reduce glare from the sun (this was examined by the Mythbusters, who deemed it plausible) but its hard to imagine that it's entirely accidental that they're also making themselves look like warriors.

Compare Lipstick and Load Montage, where the mouth gets painted.

Examples

Anime and Manga
  • In Princess Mononoke, just before the boars attack the mining town, there's a sequence of them using their snouts to warpaint each others' faces with mud.

Film

Western Animation
Community Feedback Replies: 24
  • April 10, 2011
    dalek955
  • April 10, 2011
    Sackett
    Is this about actual War Paint, or is this about putting something below the eyes as an "I'm serious now" symbol?
  • April 10, 2011
    randomsurfer
    See also Braids Beads And Buckskins and the ykttw Tribal Face Paint.

    Done on The Simpsons in that episode where they were parodying Lord Of The Flies. (And presumably in LotF too but I haven't seen it.) Nelson and the rest of the tribe put on warpaint made out of ash before hunting Bart, Lisa and Milhouse.
  • April 10, 2011
    Sackett
    I'm just pointing out that the description doesn't seem to be about actual War Paint.

    I think they could both be tropes, but that would suggest we need a new description, and that the current description needs a new YKTTW with a new name.
  • April 10, 2011
    Evalana
    • In My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic "Dragonshy", Rainbow Dash prepares to face a dragon by dipping her hooves into a puddle of liquid rainbow and applying it beneath her eyes.
  • August 14, 2013
    johnnye
    Can we revive this? I think it's definitely a trope.

    How about calling it This Means Warpaint? I.e. This Means War + War Paint.

    In The Lone Ranger, Tonto's Tribal Face Paint is revealed to be this. He first painted it on with ashes in the midst of a Heroic BSOD after his tribe was slaughtered, and has kept it up ever since.
  • August 14, 2013
    DragonQuestZ
    I would prefer a different name. I thought it was like the episode of the Super Mario Bros 3 cartoon where the Koopa kids threw paint at the mushroom people to make them racist.
  • August 14, 2013
    DAN004
    To me, the description sounds more like "Instant Face Paint Just Add Conflict".

    ...Okay, not really that close. :P

    Anyways suggesting Face Paint Of War for the title.
  • August 15, 2013
    Arivne
  • August 15, 2013
    Antigone3
    I like This Means Warpaint.

    I'd suggest dropping the sports example, though -- eyeblack to reduce glare has nothing to do with Lets Get Dangerous.
  • August 15, 2013
    DennisDunjinman
    In The Adventures Of Sharkboy And Lavagirl, while traveling through the Land of Milk and Cookies, Max spreads blue and pink frosting across his cheeks before charging at plughounds.
  • August 16, 2013
    johnnye
    ^^I think it's worth mentioning -- it looks pretty badass, and sportsmen-are-warriors is a common metaphor -- but I agree that it's a bit too prominent in the description. The Mythbusters thing is irrelevant, since the myth that they were examining is whether it reduces glare.

    Is the OP still around, or is this Up For Grabs?
  • August 17, 2013
    Arivne
    The OP Sceptre last edited a trope/work page on July 17th, so they're probably no longer on the Wiki.

    They haven't edited this trope since it was created in 2011, so it is Up For Grabs by the definition on that page.
  • August 19, 2013
    AgProv
    Appeared to begin in the 1980's with Australian cricketers very carefully applying barrier cream to the bridge of the nose and forehead. Very prudent, as even with a hat on, standing on the field of play for up to eight hours while fielding under an Australian sun would be no joke - you really would not want the pain and distraction of sunburn. Other Antipodean teams took this up, and it is worth noting the barrier cream was not the inobtrusive flesh-coloured stuff you buy in the chemists. It was, at least to begin with, pure white. Then it became multicoloured and spread to cheekbones and chin. Other reasons for wearing it might well apply: Australian cricketers have likened their sport to a war, especially against England. This has overtones of fighting soldiers applying cam cream before going in to battle. team spirit, maybe? Also the primal purpose of warpaint - to look scary and inhuman and intimidate the opponents.
  • August 19, 2013
    Larkmarn
    This Means Warpaint works, I'd also like to suggest In Case Of Conflict Add Facepaint.

    It's long, but I think it's witty.
  • August 19, 2013
    oneuglybunny
    Western Animation
  • August 19, 2013
    DennisDunjinman
    Up For Grabs, you say?

    Yoink. Examples added. Can we add anything to the description?
  • August 19, 2013
    DragonQuestZ
    Well I love the new name. It, at least to me, really fits Clear Concise Witty.
  • August 19, 2013
    Stratadrake
    This Means Warpaint is awesome.
  • August 20, 2013
    johnnye
    Maybe something like this:

    "A kind of subtrope of Body Paint where, just before a conflict, a character will take some sort of paint -- or improvise with something closer to hand like mud or ashes -- and apply it just below the eyes. The effect is something like Tribal Face Paint or army camouflage, and the implication is clear: The Gloves are Off.

    Sports players often do this too. Ostensibly, this is to reduce glare from the sun (this was examined by the Mythbusters, who deemed it plausible) but its hard to imagine that it's entirely accidental that they're also making themselves look like badass warriors."
  • August 20, 2013
    DracMonster
    • In Princess Mononoke, just before the boars attack the mining town, there's a sequence of them using their snouts to warpaint each others' faces with mud.

    And this title is awesome.
  • August 20, 2013
    KZN02
  • August 21, 2013
    johnnye
    Looking good. I think this is ready to go.
  • August 30, 2013
    littlemissmuffet
    • The Natives in Disney's Pocahontas put on warpaint in the "Savages" number.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=453naia8vkvhyubv5vqicjbu&trope=ThisMeansWarpaint