Eyes Only Shown YKTTW Discussion

Eyes Only Shown
A character who\'s face is not seen, with the exception of the eyes.
(permanent link) added: 2011-11-05 16:15:33 sponsor: Skyhawk431 (last reply: 2011-11-08 13:07:47)

Add Tag:
A subtrope of He Who Must Not Be Seen and The Faceless, Eyes Only Showing (Needs a Better Name) is when a characters face is hidden, with the exception of the eyes. This could be acheived in several ways:
  • The Character wears a mask with the eyes only showing.
  • The Character is wearing some kind of clothing that leaves the eyes visible. eg a Niqāb (not a Burqa. They cover the entire face), a Ninja Costume, a Balaclava.
  • The face is blocked by shadows (possible from wearing a hood)

This is often used in a similar way to The Faceless; to hide a characters identity or to dehumanize them. Sometimes the face may be shown in The Reveal, or in a casual manner.

May overlap with TheVoiceless/TheSpeechless.


  • Characters like these feature in the artwork of Ursula Vernon; her stated reason is that they are nondescript (thus the viewer can identify with them) yet still able to show emotion.
    • A good example is the temple guards in Digger, who combine face veils with shaved heads and topknots to create this effect.

Film In the film Copacabana Carmen (Carmen Miranda) gets two sumultaneous gigs at the eponymous club: as her Brazilian self in the main room and as the French "Madamoiselle Fifi" in the caberet. As Fifi she wears a full face veil, showing only her eyes.

  • In The Wheel of Time, the Aiel wear modified scarves called shoufa that they pull across their faces when they expect a fight.

Live-Action TV

  • Many kinds of sports helmets give this look.

Video Games
  • Eresh from Suikoden V. Despite her age, she's still a child and wears loose-fitting cleric's robes which includes a hood and veil. As such, all that can be seen are her eyes.
  • The Black Mages from Final Fantasy series have their faces overshadowed by their iconic hats with only their yellow eyes being visible.
  • The thieves from Spyro the Dragon are like this most of the time, touth their mouths are sometimes shown as well.
  • The player character in Spiral Knights. No matter what helmet it's wearing, it's always shows only the eyes.

  • The main character, his family and his clone in The Adventures of Dr. McNinja. It's explained that his clan of ninjas are masked at birth so as a final resort they can remove their mask and disappear forever. Although since he saw the Doctor's clone before putting a mask on it Franz Rainer knows what he looks like under his mask. Morgo the Uberninja and the mook ninjas who were dosed with a ninja power inducing drug also count.
  • The Monster in the Dark featured in The Order of the Stick is Exactly What It Says on the Tin.

Western Animation
  • Kenny from South Park is (almost) always shown wearing a hood that blocks his face and muffles his speech.
  • Looney Tunes' Marvin the Martian. Whether the rest of his face is in shadow or if it's even there at all is open for speculation.
    • Duck Dodgers offers a different explanation--his face was never obscured, his head really is a black sphere with only eyes.

Real Life
  • A real life example is the Muslim Niqāb, which is often mistakenly called a Burqa. The Burqa covers the whole face including the eyes (they can see through the fabric around the eyes).

Replies: 11