An Eye Colour Change is when a character's eyes change colour in response to some stimuli. The colour the eyes change into depends on the event and the character, but it can be anything from a shift in hue to something as dramatic as brown eyes turning bright yellow and round pupils lengthening into slits.
This is generally a sign that something major has just happened. A possession, a shift in alignment, the acquisition of supernatural power, trauma, anything significant can trigger an Eye Colour Change.
Supertrope to Kaleidoscope Eyes
which is about eyes working as mood rings. Does not apply to a Adaptation Dye Job
. See also Convenient Color Change
, Game Face
, Eye Lights Out
and Demonic Possession
Anime and Manga
- Claymore: The eyes of a Claymore are silver until they use their Yoma powers; this turns their eyes gold.
- The title character of Rurouni Kenshin changes eye colour to correspond to which Split Personality is in command in the anime.
- Subaru Nakajima's eyes in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Striker S are normally green, but turn gold when she enters full Combat Cyborg mode. The first time this is triggered on screen, it also coincides with Unstoppable Rage.
- The title character of Inu Yasha's eyes change colour according to whether he is in human, hanyou, or youkai form.
- Dragon Ball Z: A Saiyan's eyes turn green when he turns Super Saiyan (although it's easily missable, since the other effect of the transformation is much more visible).
- In Naruto The Sharingan is a hereditary superpower of the Uchiha clan that allows for Awesomeness By Analysis and causes distinctive change in the eye when used; a more advanced version exists has a different look. Both are unlocked by traumatic experiences.
- In Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, humans who channel enormous Spiral Power have spirals appear in their eyes. This is seen mostly in Lordgenome, but also briefly in Kittan right before his death. It's strangely absent in Simon until the Distant Finale.
- In Katekyo Hitman Reborn, Tsuna's eyes are normally brown. However, when he goes into Dying Will Mode, they change into an orange-ish yellow.
- The eyes of NEXT in Tiger And Bunny typically change to a bright, glowing blue when they activate their abilities. This isn't the case for all of them, however -- NEXT with passive abilities don't have an eye color change, the eyes of the two NEXT in Ouroboros glow orange-yellow, and Kotetsu's eyes have recently started turning red to go along with his Power Incontinence.
- In Yumeria, Neneko has violet/purple eyes, but when mental time traveler Neito takes control of their shared body, they turn green.
- In Inu Yasha, both the title character and his half-brother, Sesshoumaru, have eyes that go completely bloodshot-red when their demonic powers are fully released.
- In The Lost Boys, vampires' eyes go from their natural colour to red when they transform into 'vampire mode'.
- Star Wars has the phenomenon of "Sith eyes", related to the Dark Side of the Force. They usually aren't permanent and usually manifest when the dark Force-user is enraged (Count Dooku, always calm and collected, never manifests them). Only Darth Maul, who is more or less always belligerent, sports permanent Sith eyes.
Live Action TV
- Rachel from Cliff McNish's The Doomspell Trilogy has eyes that change colour depending on the spell she is using, these eyes are said to be a wizard trait.
- At the end of Septimus Heap - Magyk, Sarah Heap notices that Septimus's eyes are becoming green from exposure to Magyk when she identifies him as her child.
- In The Stormlight Archive, it is believed by many characters that if a person with dark eyes wins a Shardblade their eyes will become light. Notably there is one character with a Shardblade who's eyes are normally dark green but become pale blue when he is actively using the Blade, the character notes that this is unique to his particular blade, so it's not entirely clear what the actual situation is.
- In The Wheel Of Time, users of the True Power develop black flecks swimming across their eyes as a result of overuse. With continued use, the flecks become more common, and eventually transform the eyes and mouth into caverns of flame.
- In The Door Within Trilogy, the Glimpses eyes change colour depending on their affiliation: Blue for King Eliam, Red for Paragor, and Green for neutral/undecided.
- In Roger Zelazny's Divlish The Damned, some witches have eyes that wax and wane with the moon.
- In the Black Jewels novels: Jaenelle Angelline's eyes turn from "summer-sky" blue to "sapphire" when she's in Witch mode.
- In the later seasons of Babylon 5, Lyta Alexander's eyes would turn solid black whenever she made use of the Vorlon enhancements to her psychic abilities. However she became even more powerful in the Postscript Season, she acquires Glowing Eyes Of Doom instead. Possibly because the black contacts used for the old effect were painful to wear.
- Buffy The Vampire Slayer:
- Whenever Willow makes intensive use of magic, her eyes abruptly turned pitch-black while closed. Then, in the series finale, when using the scythe to activate all the potential slayers, her eyes (and hair) turned white, hinting she was using powerful white magic.
- When Willow buffed up Buffy with magic to fight Adam, Buffy's eyes turned gold/yellow.
- In Forever Knight, vampires' eyes turn golden when they vamp out.
- In Merlin, Merlin's eyes turn brownish-gold when he uses magic.