When miles away from a first aid kit, your jammies will do
Somebody is injured and there is no hospital, drugstore, or first aid kit in sight. This leaves only one option, someone is going to have to rip up the clothes they are wearing to make a bandage to put on that wound.
This is an action that, though seemingly a simple act of kindness, can say many things about the characters involved. It can show that if they don't hesitate at all the character ripping their clothes is either a battle or survival pragmatist, or if they do hesitate that they are perhaps a tiny bit vain or at least image conscious or if said clothes were expensive and / or new
they are more mindful of the money they are wasting rather than the needs of others.
It also can be can be used to send romantic signals about the characters involved, it is not uncommon to have the person ripping the clothes being a girl and the injured party be a guy she likes. The fact that it is commonly a women doing this can be seen as a form of mild titillation if it is played for fanservice
Anime and Manga
- Sailor Moon Naru does this with her pajamas to make a bandage for Nephrite when they are hiding from Zoisite in a park after his attack. She hangs onto said bandage as a token to remember him by after he dies and eventually gives it to Umino to show she's moved on emotionally from Nephrite's death.
- Janet ripped her slip to make a bandage for Rocky in The Rocky Horror Picture Show just before the "Toucha Toucha Toucha Touch Me" number.
- It was parodied in Hot Shots! 2: the main girl rips off a part of her (already scant) clothing to bandage a wounded team member, then another one, then the resident perv realizes she'll just keep going until she is completely naked, so he claims he is wounded, too.
- In the early Michael J. Fox movie Doc Hollywood, he momentarily agonizes over having to rip up some Armani shirts in order to treat a woman who's gone into sudden labor.
Live Action Television
- In the second Dragonriders of Pern novel, F'lar and Lessa are wearing new outfits to a wedding. F'lar ends up in a duel with T'ron, during which he gets his suit cut up, and Lessa has to rip up her dress to make bandages.
- In the 1924 novel Jungle-Born by John Eyton a village girl who's run away from her abusive father finds the Wild Child protagonist unconscious and badly injured from a tiger attack. To save him she strips off her one and only garment and tears it into strips to wash and bandage his wounds. The fact that this means they're now both naked probably isn't insignificant.
- There was an episode of The Flying Nun where Sister Bertrill tore her habit to make a bandage.
- An episode of Gunsmoke had Kitty shred up her petticoat to make bandages for an ailing Matt.
- Survivorman Les Stroud has done this after injuring himself in the wild.
- In the final part of Mass Effect 3, you can hear a man instructing a girl to do that over the radio.
- Not clothing, but thematically similar, in My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic Rarity cuts off her tail to fix the mustache of "Steven Magnet" the sea-serpent who is suffering a Minor Injury Overreaction. It's done specifically to highlight how her generous nature outweighs her fashionista personality to set her up as the wielder of the Element of Generosity.
Needs a Better Title
- In the case of Real Life of it happening... in the past it has happened on the battlefield before First Aid Personnel were commonly deployed, and can happen now. But also take a zone after any disaster and you cannot locate a First Aid kit, therefore you use clothes as a makeshift bandage.
, Rolling Updates
EDIT: Changed Title to make things clearer
SIDENOTE (Which will not be in if Launched): I originally had the below here, keeping it as someone below replied to correct me. Just retaining it on the draft for etiquette....
"I am sure I've seen this elsewhere too. My mind wants to say it happened in Beauty and the Beast
but that might have just been a normal bandage."