Created By: Onitatsu on January 7, 2013 Last Edited By: Onitatsu on February 10, 2013

Slashed Across the Face

A character gets a meaningful wound on the face.

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This is a trope that can be found whenever fights are involved. In a melee battle, the head is usually a difficult target (compared to, say, the torso). However, is also a vital spot, so is advised to keep it safe.

Generally, a slash on the face, vertical or horizontal, can be significative, as in "look how he/she went close to kill you!", and will almost always leave a scar on the face. Sometimes, (especially if the villain is on the receiving end), the scarred will hold a grudge against the one who sliced him, keeping the scar as a memento.

Alternatively, sometimes facial scars can be meaningful if self-inflicted, usually as either a sacrifice of some sort or due to a test or ritual.

Can border with both Eye Scream and Eyes Are Unbreakable, depending on wether the wound squishes the eye or not. Will almost always result in Good Scars, Evil Scars or in a Glasgow Grin.


Examples:

[[AC:Anime and Manga

  • Gamaran loves this trope, as a large amount of characters gets sliced in the face, usually as a proof of how good their opponent is, though most of the time is deadly. Most notable cases include Nikaido Masaku (got sliced twice over the same eye, once in the past, then on the chin and finally horizontally in the other eye), Sakakibara Sasuke (cut across the face to enphasize how much Zenmaru's improved), Omiya Banri (diagonally across the face, though he survived) and Kizaki Gensai, across the eye.
  • In Rurouni Kenshin, Kenshin had his cheek sliced twice, hence the scar. Gohei Hiruma get sliced horizontally across the face by Sanosuke's Zanbato, and the next time we see him he has a noticeable scar. Also Shikijo in his backstory, due to Aoshi's attack.
  • Tokiko Tsumura in Busou Renkin has a horizontal scar across her cheeks and nose, received when a humanoid homunculus attacked her as a child. (It helps that the author admits to her being a partial expy of Kenshin's Hitokiri Battousai mode.)
  • In One Piece, Shanks has a claw-like mark on his eye, due to Blackbeard wearing Wolverine Claws somewhere in the past. In the second movie one of the villains has a deep diagonal scar on the face, courtesy of Zoro (who didn't recognize him). Zoro himself gets a face scar over his eye after the Time Skip. As a self-inflicted example we have Luffy himself, who slashed his cheeck with a knife to impress Shanks.
  • In InuYasha, during their second battle Inu Yasha manages to cut a deep scar in Sesshomaru's cheek.
  • Seen several times in Bleach, with one jarring example standing out: during the Ichigo vs Kenpachi battle, the former tries to stop the charging Kenpachi by stabbing his face with the tip of his sword. The latter keeps going, Slasher Smile and all, as the sword slides on his face giving him a rather long cut. Much later we find out that the vertical scar on Kenpachi's face was given to him by Unohana Yachiru, the first Kenpachi and the only person he highly respects.

Comic Books

  • Happens to Perfect Storm in X-Men Forever due to Kitty Pride's attack.

Film

  • In The Princess Bride Inigo Montoya has two scars, one on each cheek, that he received from the six-fingered man, Count Rugen, who killed his father, though in this case it's done as a Mark of Shame. At the end when he faces Rugen he returns the favor right before killing him.
  • Snow White and the Huntsman has a whole village of women and girls who scarred their own faces to avoid being preyed upon by Queen Ravenna, who gains magic power by draining youth and beauty from young women.

Video Game

  • In God of War II, Kratos ends up doing this to the Colossus of Rhodes after their first struggle. In Ghost of Sparta, is revealed that Kratos' own face scar comes from Ares hitting him when he was taking Deimos away.

Video games

  • Skies of Arcadia: Legends: In the Gamecube remake, the Piastol/Moonfish sidequest ultimately reveals how Vsye got the scar under his left eye. A flashback, of when he and Aika were 10 and 9 respectively, shows they had taken part in the rescue mission to save Admiral Mendoza's ship, and had boarded, without any weapons. Piastol (also 10, at that time) assumed they were the ones responsible for the attack on their vessel. So she attacked with one of her knives, with the intent to kill Aika. Vyse threw himself in the way of the blade, to save her, resulting in the scar under his left eye.
    • The significance of Vyse's scar is different for Aika and Piastol.
    • For Aika, it's a constant reminder to never be careless again, by leaving her weapons behind, because of what it nearly cost Vyse; which she's never forgiven herself for. For Piastol, it's an identifying mark of the one she holds responsible for her father's death.
  • In Prince of Persia Warrior Within, Shadee gets to show her skills in swordmastery by slashing the Prince's face, causing him to yell the infamous line "You Bitch!".
  • In SaGa 2, Flora/Olivia cuts a scar on her face to mar her beauty so that Venus will exile her and she can be with the man she loves, who was exiled from Venus' city of beauty after suffering a wound to his leg.

Real Life

  • Elite German student fraternities (Burschenschaften) often had (and some still have) a ritual for new members where he would get slashed on the cheek with a fencing sword, leaving a small scar as a lifelong sign of his membership.

Community Feedback Replies: 38
  • January 7, 2013
    KZN02
    BIONICLE: Sort of, Tahu gets a scar on his mask from a Lerahk, though the effects do latter affect him mentally.
  • January 7, 2013
    Onitatsu
    BTW, do you think I should count only when we see the slashing in action or not?
  • January 7, 2013
    KZN02
    Well, what if the slashing was self-inflicted? That would be a bit confusing.
  • January 7, 2013
    Palindromee
    Legend Of Korra : [spoiler: Noatak/Amon's supposed 'scar'.]
  • January 7, 2013
    StarSword
    Stick this one right below Rurouni Kenshin, please.

    Anime and Manga:
  • January 7, 2013
    Tallens
    Film:
    • In The Princess Bride Inigo Montoya has two scars, one on each cheek, that he received from the six-fingered man, Count Rugen, who killed his father, though in this case it's done as a Mark Of Shame. At the end when he faces Rugen he returns the favor right before killing him.

  • January 8, 2013
    Onitatsu
    To KZN 02: The Self Inflicted slash (for example, Luffy from One Piece) has his own meaning, usually as a form of "sacrifice" or ritual. For examples, Huns were said to gash their own cheeks as a sign of mourning for their fallen king.

    ^^ To Star Sword, Ok.
  • January 8, 2013
    Lucymae2
    How about Scar and The Joker?
  • January 8, 2013
    justanotherrandomlurker
    Live Action TV
    • Hogan's Heroes: General Burkhalter has a noticable scar on his face, probably received in battle during a previous war (in Real Life, however, actor Leon Askin received the scar from being beaten by Nazis for being Jewish).
  • January 8, 2013
    randomsurfer
    See also Dueling Scar.

    • Dr Doom wears a mask because his face got injured in an accident, which he considered extremely scarring (but Depending On The Writer it may have been very minor). He put the mask on while it was still hot from the forging process, whcih scarred him considerably more.
    • In Nomads of Gor Tarl meets the Wagon Peoples, a Proud Warrior Race where every male adult has scars across his face as decoration and indicators of rank and history. The first scar is always the blood-red Courage scar; until he earns that a male isn't considered a man.
      • In Vagabonds of Gor Tarl travels with an Alar (Fantasy Counterpart Culture to Huns with a little Roma thrown in). Alars give newborn males a slash across each cheek just after birth and before it firsts suckles.
  • January 9, 2013
    Antigone3
    Not from a fight scene, but in the Malloreon the Murgo custom of slashing one's own face as an offering to Torak becomes a plot point in an early novel.

    A better example, if we're limiting this to fight/battle scars only, would be from the "Grimjack" comic book. After Grimjack's soul returns from Heaven and moves into a clone body, he has some trouble operating the body ... until he's slashed in the face, leaving the same type of scar he had in his original body.
  • January 9, 2013
    Chernoskill
    Elite German student fraternities (Burschenschaften) often had (and some still have) a ritual for new members where he would get slashed on the cheek with a fencing sword, leaving a small scar as a lifelong sign of his membership.
  • January 9, 2013
    Onitatsu
    Lucymae2 I've seen them in the Good Scars Evil Scars, but for now, I'm not really sure about including them or not (along with many others)... But, I can still change my mind.
  • January 9, 2013
    StarSword
    Meaningful Face Wound? To distinguish it from just any time somebody gets a wound to the face.

    Literature:
    • Garik "Face" Loran of the X Wing Series starts out with a scar across his face he acquired in a gun battle during his escape from the Empire. He could easily have it removed, but keeps it as a reminder of his time as a child actor doing propaganda pieces for the Empire. He finally has it removed at the behest of his best friend's will.

    Video Game:
    • Mass Effect 2's Zaeed Massani has a giant scar on his face received when his business partner betrayed him and shot him in the head point-blank.
  • January 9, 2013
    chicagomel
    Kovu in The Lion King 2 gets slashed by his mother, Zira, and ends up with a scar that looks just like Scar's...I think it was a tie in to the whole idea of him struggling not to be like Scar.
  • January 10, 2013
    Hargrim
    Tyrion Lannister in A Song of Ice and Fire sustains a face wound and loses most of his nose in the process.
  • January 10, 2013
    Onitatsu
    ^^^ Is already mentioned in the laconic that it must be a meaningful wound. Plus, if it's only about a guy with a scarred face just for fashion or no really important reason, that should go under Good Scars Evil Scars.
  • January 10, 2013
    McKathlin
    Example for wrong trope; please disregard.
  • January 10, 2013
    McKathlin
    Example for wrong trope; please disregard.
  • January 10, 2013
    McKathlin
    On second thought...does it count if a character gives herself a meaningful scar? That's what both of my examples were about.
  • January 10, 2013
    aurora369
    Squall and Seifer from Final Fantasy VIII give themselves scars like these during their duel in the intro cinematic, which begins their enmity.
  • January 11, 2013
    Tallens
    Does Zaeed count or is this strictly limited to scars given by blade?
  • January 11, 2013
    Onitatsu
    ^^^ Yes, a self-inflicted wound is usually quite important, so it counts. And to ^, this is about "slashes", wounds inflicted with any edged/bladed/sharp instrument or thing, from knives to swords to claws to sharp tendrils. (Ps: Yes, if you want to add the examples to the list, you're free to proceed).
  • January 11, 2013
    nitrokitty
    • X Wing Series: Garik "Face" Loran, former child actor for the Empire, has a large scar across his face as a result of a hostage rescue gone wrong. He keeps it as a souvenir to remind him of all the harm he did acting for the Empire. Ton Phanan later forces him to have corrective surgery, telling him to stop punishing the little boy he used to be.
  • January 13, 2013
    Jallen
    • Colin in Highlander The Search For Vengeance managed to gain a massive slash across his face on the same day where he discovers he's an immortal. Immortal's heal extremely quickly and normally scars heal perfectly but his was so severe he gains a noticeable scar running between his eyes.
  • January 13, 2013
    MiinU

    Video games

    • Skies of Arcadia: Legends: In the Gamecube remake, the Piastol/Moonfish sidequest ultimately reveals how Vsye got the scar under his left eye. A flashback, of when he and Aika were 10 and 9 respectively, shows they had taken part in the rescue mission to save Admiral Mendoza's ship, and had boarded, without any weapons. Piastol (also 10, at that time) assumed they were the ones responsible for the attack on their vessel. So she attacked with one of her knives, with the intent to kill Aika. Vyse threw himself in the way of the blade, to save her, resulting in the scar under his left eye.
      • The significance of Vyse's scar is different for Aika and Piastol.
      • For Aika, it's a constant reminder to never be careless again, by leaving her weapons behind, because of what it nearly cost Vyse; which she's never forgiven herself for. For Piastol, it's an identifying mark of the one she holds responsible for her father's death.
  • January 13, 2013
    oneuglybunny
    The calling card of Brad Pitt's character in Inglorious Basterds was to carve swastikas into the foreheads of Nazis. One poor private thusly marked was shown to Adolf Hitler.
  • January 16, 2013
    Chernoskill
    ^^Good example!
  • January 16, 2013
    McKathlin
    Okay then, here are some self-inflicted examples:

    Film
    • Snow White And The Huntsman has a whole village of women and girls who scarred their own faces to avoid being preyed upon by Queen Ravenna, who gains magic power by draining youth and beauty from young women.
    Video Games
    • In Sa Ga 2, Flora/Olivia cuts a scar on her face to mar her beauty so that Venus will exile her and she can be with the man she loves, who was exiled from Venus' city of beauty after suffering a wound to his leg.
  • January 16, 2013
    Onitatsu
    ^^ As for Good examples, I'd prefer a lot examples of people getting wounded in the face onscreen/on paper rather than just "guys with facial scars". Of course, if the scar is relevant enough or we actually learn/see what caused the wound, then it's perfect.
  • February 9, 2013
    1810072342
    Literature: In Skulduggery Pleasant Valkyrie cuts Billy-Ray Sanguine with his own razor, the scars from which never heal. This givens him extra reason to try and kill her.
  • February 9, 2013
    MiinU
    The X Men Forever example could use context. As far as I'm aware, Kitty's ability only allows her to phase through solid objects (or people). At the very least, the example should explain how and why she cut Storm, and what significance does it have, if any.
  • February 9, 2013
    lycropath

    And here is a suggestion for the page image a picture of Squall from my example.
  • February 9, 2013
    Darthcaliber
    During the Devil'sDue run of the GI Joe comics Snake Eyes gets slashed across the face by Storm Shadow- who had been brainwashed back into serving Cobra- leaving him with a scar across his face. This was particularly significant because Snake Eyes had just recently had his previously scarred face restored through plastic surgery. When Storm Shadow later broke free of the of the brainwashing and turned back to the Joe team it took some time for Snake Eyes to get over the incident and trust him again.
  • February 10, 2013
    Chabal2
    • Warhammer 40 K: Lucius the Eternal got two from a psyker when he was still a loyalist marine. Now his face is crisscrossed with scars, and he adds a new one every time he fights.
    • Three Hundred: The climax of the movie is Leonidas grazing Xerxes' face with his spear, demonstrating that "even a god-king can bleed".
  • February 10, 2013
    Onitatsu
    ^^^ mmmhh.... (thumbs up) seems good enough.
  • February 10, 2013
    Omeganian
    Ged from Earthsea Trilogy got several bad scars after an attempt to summon a spirit let in something else. For the rest of his life, they served as a very efficient reminder not to get too arrogant or overconfident.
  • February 10, 2013
    LobsterMagnus
    Does the forehead count as part of the face? If so, then Harry Potter's lightning scar inflicted upon him by Voldemort is definitely an example.
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