Created By: Auxdarastrix on November 3, 2011 Last Edited By: Auxdarastrix on November 10, 2011
Troped

Inhumanly Beautiful Race

Humanoid race that looks much like humans, but better

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Needs More Examples, No Launching Please

The Inhumanly Beautiful Race is a fictional non-human species that is always, nearly without fail, incredibly good looking. Not only are they good looking, but they tend to be described as better looking than the vast majority of humans could ever hope to be. When describing their beauty, authors tend to use terms like "inhuman", "otherworldly" and "ethereal". Depending on the author, such a species may inspire either simple chaste appreciation, or immediate and profound arousal. In extreme cases, their looks are so incredible as to act as almost a form of glamour, instantly become the center of attention (and desire) everywhere they go.

While this concept can be found in all forms of media, it usually this works best in a non-visual medium. With a novel, the reader can imagine their own ideal of beauty. In a live action work, it may become a case of a subjective judgement of Informed Attractiveness.

Angels and Elves almost invariably fall under this trope, and The Fair Folk are often included. In recent years, Vampires have also increasingly been portrayed as having inhuman hotness, in contrast to older versions where they looked more like walking corpses.

In order to make this not-subjective, examples should only be of cases where the race is described as being this in-universe, either in the narration or by other characters.

No Real Life Examples, Please!

Examples

Comics
  • In the world of ElfQuest, most humans tend feel this way about the elves. It sometimes provokes humans to extreme behavior, for good or evil.

Literature
  • Most vampires (except the Black Court) in The Dresden Files take on good looking forms, but the White Court vampires are an embodiment of Vampires Are Sex Gods meets Inhumanly Beautiful Race.
  • In Twilight, all the Cullens are described as being impossibly beautiful with Edward being metaphorically referred to as a god.
  • Elves in J. R. R. Tolkien's works are almost invariably described as being good looking. The three best looking females in Middle-earth are all Elves. The Valar also count.
  • Elves in The Witcher series, too, though unlike in Tolkien's works, their Beauty most definitely doesn't Equal Goodness
  • Elves, again, in the Arcia Chronicles are exceptionally beautiful, which is justified by their species being many times older than humans, meaning that they represent the peak of humanoid evolution (frozen in time thanks to their immortality) while humans are still getting there. On the other hand, it is also deconstructed because perfect physique and looks means that all elves (of the same gender) look the same to humans, as their physical differences are so minimal that only fellow elves can spot them. Hair/eye color and clothes are the only way mortal races can tell elves they don't know personally apart.
  • Selelvians from the Star Trek Expanded Universe. Which makes sense because they're Space Elves.
  • The Veela in Harry Potter. They are beautiful women with long silver-blonde hair, blue eyes, shining skin and perfect teeth. Although they have supernatural powers to seduce men and hypnotise them so it is possible that Harry's description of them is a little exaggerated. They have one downside though: piss them off and they turn into crazy bird monsters that throw fire at you.
  • The Elves in the Hollow Kingdom Trilogy are described as being much better looking than humans. Also, the difference betweeen the beauty of elvish nobility to elvish commoners is compared in-story to the difference of an elvish commoner and a human.
  • Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel's Legacy series has the D'Angelines, who impress every other people with their beauty.
  • The demonic Kialli in Michelle West's The Sun Sword books are inhumanly beautiful. In the same author's Chronicles of Elantra books, it is the immortal Barrani who are repeatedly described as perfect.
  • In The Chronicles of Narnia, dryads and merfolk, at least from Lucy's point of view.

Religion and Mythology
  • Almost all the gods of Classical Mythology were inhumanly good looking, with the notable exception of Vulcan.
  • The Fae in Middle English mythology were known for their beauty, and unsurprisingly they were the inspiration behind Tolkein's elves.

Tabletop Games
  • Nymphs in Dungeons & Dragons are described as being so beautiful that they can make characters go blind just from seeing them.
  • The elves from Magic: The Gathering's Lorwyn set. Their caste system runs on how beautiful they are and they will often hunt other species that they deem uglier than they.
  • The whole Daeva clan from Vampire: The Requiem. In their Clan Book it is stated that they're "stronger, faster and sexier than you". Even before the embrace they are already attractive humans after it they become inhumanly beautiful, partly because of their discipline, Majesty, that allows them to bedazzle people with their presence. The clan book does make a point of the fact that anyone who knows enough about the Daeva (including the Daeva themselves) tends to find something off about them because their beauty is artificial and they are incapable of love. One of the illustrators noted that the Daeva are essentially sex objects rather than people.
  • Eldar in Warhammer40000 are said to look like beautiful humans, but also that they are so graceful it's creepy.
  • The Eberron Campaign Setting gives us Kalashtar, a near-human psionic race--and, of course, elves.
Video Games
  • In Mass Effect, the Asari (a one-gender race). It's implied that humans just see them as hot female humans with blue skin and slightly weird heads, and that other spacefaring races see them as resembling attractive versions of their own race.

Community Feedback Replies: 36
  • November 3, 2011
    MorganWick
    I'm scratching my head at what real-life examples you could possibly be trying to prevent. If this trope had a real-life section, either it got invaded by practitioners of bestiality, or the real-life examples would be the least of its problems.
  • November 3, 2011
    jastay3
    Well aesthetica and sexual attraction are not the same thing. I think eagles are more beautiful then humans but am not tempted to bestiality with them.
  • November 3, 2011
    Generality
    In any case, I'm pretty sure this is covered by The Beautiful People.
  • November 4, 2011
    TippyToeZombie
    Amazonia's race in Love And Capes is portrayed this way and it is also mentioned that there is a law mandating a maximum of three percent body fat.
  • November 4, 2011
    Koveras
    The Beautiful People is when the entire main cast is exceptionally beautiful for no apparent reason other than Author Appeal. This is for ethnic groups being regarded as much more beautiful than others in-universe.

  • November 4, 2011
    Auxdarastrix
    The Beautiful People is undergoing trope repair right now. And neither this or Koveras's defintion is really what it means. It has always been about more than just physical looks, but the description has been a mess. We are now rewriting the definition and spliting off other things to make that clearer.

    This is purely about looks. It doesn't have any of the other implications about wealth, breeding, social status, nice houses and clothes, etc that The Beautiful People carries with it.
  • November 4, 2011
    Koveras
    ^ Oh, now that you mention it, I have another example!

    • Elves, again, in the Arcia Chronicles are exceptionally beautiful, which is justified by their species being many times older than humans, meaning that they represent the peak of humanoid evolution (frozen in time thanks to their immortality) while humans are still getting there. On the other hand, it is also deconstructed because perfect physique and looks means that all elves (of the same gender) look the same to humans, as their physical differences are so minimal that only fellow elves can spot them. Hair/eye color and clothes are the only way mortal races can tell elves they don't know personally apart.
  • November 4, 2011
    fulltimeD
    Selelvians from the Star Trek Expanded Universe. Which makes sense because they're space elves.
  • November 4, 2011
    lunarkweh
    The Eberron Campaign Setting gives us Kalashtar, a near-human psionic race--and, of course, elves.
  • November 4, 2011
    cityofmist
    The fae in The Dresden Files also fall under this.
  • November 4, 2011
    Koveras
    Also from The Witcher: the dryads, a One Gender Race of hot Action Girls. They can also transform human girls into one of them, which comes with a free +100 bonus to the Hotness stat.
  • November 4, 2011
    Nibbles2
    With the current description, this could overlap heavily with Green Skinned Space Babe.
  • November 4, 2011
    Augustine
    Eldar are said to look like beautiful humans, but also that they are so graceful it's creepy.
  • November 4, 2011
    LeeM
    If we're talking about elves we'd better include Elf Quest. Most humans (including readers) tend to feel this way about the elves; in-story it sometimes provokes humans to extreme behavior, for good or evil.
  • November 4, 2011
    Auxdarastrix
    What media category would Elf Quest go under?
  • November 5, 2011
    Lumpenprole
    It's been suggested that this is the opposite of the Uncanny Valley effect, with idealized realer-than-real looks being superhumanly attractive.
  • November 5, 2011
    AndersK90
    YMMW on the Asari from the Mass Effect games, but it is implied in game that they have something about them that makes them attractive to any and all species.
  • November 5, 2011
    FrodoGoofballCoTV
    Literature:
  • November 5, 2011
    captainpat
    Guys as the description says please make sure that the species described as beautiful either in the narration or by other characters
  • November 7, 2011
    fluffything
  • November 7, 2011
    lamoxlamae
    Live Action Television
    • V's Visitors are all very attractive for humans. It's part of the reason humans trust them.
      Reporter: I have noticed that there are no unattractive Visitors.
      *The Visitors chatter quietly to their leader, Lisa for a few moments.*
      Lisa: Thank you. You're not half bad looking yourself!
  • November 7, 2011
    Auxdarastrix
    Transylvanians are non-human?
  • November 7, 2011
    LeeM
    ^^ Elf Quest either goes under Comic Books (because it started out in print) or Web Comics (because the archive is now available online). Always confuses me as to which category should have priority.
  • November 7, 2011
    Nocturna
    It's probably worthwhile to note (either in the description or as an example) that The Fair Folk almost always appear this way to humans, due to their glamours. However, their real form is often anything but beautiful.
  • November 7, 2011
    randomsurfer
    ^^^In Rocky Horror the Transylvanians come from the Planet Transylvania.
  • November 8, 2011
    Lysythe
    Elves in the Hollow Kingdom Trilogy. Also, worth noting is that the beauty of elvish nobility to elvish commoners is compared in-story to the difference of an elvish commoner and a human.
  • November 8, 2011
    siolfor
    Jacqueline Carey's D'Angelines impress every other people with their beauty. The demonic Kialli in Michelle West's Sun Sword books are inhumanly beautiful. In the same author's Chronicles of Elantra books, it's the immortal Barrani who are repeatedly described as perfect.
  • November 8, 2011
    Auxdarastrix
    Is the Amazonian example from Love And Capes a non-human example?
  • November 9, 2011
    Auxdarastrix
    Bumping for more examples.
  • November 9, 2011
    sabrina_diamond
    Are you implying that Horny Devils are an example of this trope as well? (Otherwise known as Succubus/Incubus) or The Beautiful People?
  • November 9, 2011
    Auxdarastrix
    [deleting: someone seems to have posted on the wrong page]
  • November 9, 2011
    Auxdarastrix
    If the Horny Devils of a particular work meet the standards I give in the description, they are and example.

    The Beautiful People is something else entirely.
  • November 9, 2011
    spikebrennan
    Video Games: In Mass Effect, the Asari (a one-gender race). It's implied that humans just see them as hot female humans with blue skin and slightly weird heads, and that other spacefaring races see them as resembling attractive versions of their own race.
  • November 10, 2011
    Edgukator
    Under mythology, The Fae in Middle English mythology were known for their beauty, and unsurprisingly they were the inspiration behind Tolkein's elves.

    As far as Maiar and Valar are concerned,the Valar were, but considering the Maiar included Gandalf, Saruman and Radagast (who weren't described as particularly beautiful), and the corrupted Balrogs, the Maiar are more powerful and intimidating, but not necessarily more beautiful.
  • November 10, 2011
    Koveras
    It has enough examples. Just Launch It Already.
  • November 10, 2011
    Auxdarastrix
    I'll launch it sometime this weekend.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=s891t1vukw2cb5ujc27bt57j