Created By: splitscreenApril 21, 2011 Last Edited By: eroockOctober 29, 2014

Broken Mirror

A cracked mirror can signify ones ugliness.

Name Space:
Main
Page Type:
Trope

Broken Mirrors can be considered a recurring visual motif. Mirrors (or any similar reflective surface) can be seen symbol of vanity. Characters who find satisfaction in their image often reassure themselves by looking into one. Mirrors also provide a way for a character to reflect—both figuratively or literally.

When a character deliberately breaks a mirror, it often shows what they think about themselves. Perhaps they think of themselves as ugly. Physically or mentally. Sometimes it's just a way to pound their emotional turmoil into something fragile.

If the mirror is already broken, yet it's reflecting onto a scene, it could indicate that something is very, very wrong with the world.

Subtropes:

Supertrope is Please Reflect On This Index.


Other Examples:

Comic Books
  • In The Crow, after Eric comes back from the dead, he looks into a cracked mirror as he applies his famous facepaint.

Film—Animated
  • Mother Gothel from Tangled is very vain. Before she is reduced to dust at the end after her Rapid Aging, the last we see of her is a second-long shot in the shards of the mirror Flynn used to cut Rapunzel's hair.

Music
  • The album cover art for Kiss' Crazy Nights.

Community Feedback Replies: 20
  • April 21, 2011
    Earnest
  • April 21, 2011
    TonyG
  • April 21, 2011
    splitscreen
    This could be an umbrella trope for all the other broken / cracked mirror tropes.
  • April 21, 2011
    MegTheMaggot
    I think a better, more evocative page image would be this one. This trope has a lot of probable overlap with Rage Against The Reflection.
  • April 21, 2011
    AP
    • In The Crow, after Eric comes back from the dead, he looks into a cracked mirror as he applies his famous facepaint.
  • April 21, 2011
    Scooter007
    album cover art for Kiss' Crazy Nights (third one down)
  • April 22, 2011
    RV
  • April 23, 2011
    splitscreen
    The Garbage Pail Kid image is better.
  • January 10, 2012
    chihuahua0
    Can I grab this, or is it too old?
  • January 11, 2012
    chihuahua0
    BUMP?
  • January 11, 2012
    Oreochan
    It doesn't matter if a draft is too old, it's not old enough that it was deleted at least. You can go grab this, since it's been here almost 13 months without discussion so it's Up For Grabs.
  • January 11, 2012
    69BookWorM69
    How about the Tennyson quote that Agatha Christie used for a novel title (The Mirror Crack'd)?
  • January 14, 2012
    chihuahua0
    Okay, fixing it up.

    I'll need help with the description and examples. Should it be a Super Trope?
  • January 14, 2012
    Unknown Troper
    ^^Tennyson's The Lady of Shallott's Magic Mirror breaks due to some kind of Curse.

    "She suffers from a mysterious curse, and must continually weave images on her loom without ever looking directly out at the world. Instead, she looks into a mirror which reflects the busy road and the people of Camelot which pass by her island."

    She left the web, she left the loom,
    She made three paces through the room,
    She saw the water-lily bloom,
    She saw the helmet and the plume,
    She look'd down to Camelot.
    Out flew the web and floated wide;
    The mirror crack'd from side to side;
    "The curse is come upon me," cried
    The Lady of Shalott.
  • January 15, 2012
    Synchronicity
    • Mother Gothel from Tangled is very vain. Before she is reduced to dust at the end after her Rapid Aging, the last we see of her is a second-long shot in the shards of the mirror Flynn used to cut Rapunzel's hair.
  • January 16, 2012
    Mozgwsloiku
    Needs a different pic. This one is a straight example of Mirror Cracking Ugly. Also, a broken mirror can also signity insanity.
  • January 16, 2012
    TonyG
    Beauty And The Beast: As Belle enters the Beast's room, she walks by a cracked mirror, no doubt smashed in anger years ago.
  • January 16, 2012
    chihuahua0
    ^ House Of Broken Mirrors already covers that.
  • December 18, 2012
    chihuahua0
    Necro!

    Now, we need one more example to fulfill the Rule Of Three.

    Never mind. Any thoughts?
  • December 19, 2012
    Chernoskill
    Didn'd the kiler from Red Dragon (Ralph Fiennes) shatter all mirrors at the murder scene because he had a cleft lip and considered himself ugly because of it?

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