Created By: yappydog on December 12, 2012 Last Edited By: yappydog on December 18, 2012

Shadow With A Smile

Light that shouldn't exist creates features on a person's shadow.

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Page Type:
Trope
This trope covers any situation where features that should not be visible on someone's shadow appear as patches of light - typically a smile, or eyes. Frequently implies an otherworldly nature to the person casting the shadow; can be related to Living Shadow, but doesn't always match in either direction. Can imply The Shadow Knows.

Contrast Black Cloak and In the Hood, where lit features may be visible floating in shadow, but really exist.


Examples

Film
  • Oogie Boogie's shadow during the songs "This is Halloween" and "Kidnap the Sandy Claws" in The Nightmare Before Christmas has both visible eyes and a mouth.

Video Games
  • In Soul Eater, in Crona's mind his/her shadow (whom he/she talks) has a mouth and eyes of light.

Video Games
  • Blazblue's main antagonist Terumi has this as a default form. Considering that he has to re-possess his body every time loop, it's the only way we can see his true identity.

Western Animation

Web Original
  • This terrifying entry from a Worth1000 contest, showing wide eyes and a gaping smile on the shadow of an otherwise innocent-looking little girl.
Community Feedback Replies: 9
  • December 12, 2012
    yappydog
    I'm sure I remember this also cropping up from time to time in Looney Tunes when characters are feeling particularly menacing, but I don't have any examples to hand...
  • December 12, 2012
    MrRuano
    Blazblue's main antagonist Terumi has this as a default form. Considering that he has to re-possess his body every time loop, it's the only way we can see his true identity.
  • December 13, 2012
    Arivne
    Since the linked picture from the Worth1000 contest is absolutely necessary to understand it, the example violates our Weblinks Are Not Examples policy. It needs additional information so losing the link won't make the example useless.
  • December 13, 2012
    yappydog
    Gah, I guess there's an Administrivia page for everything, huh? Hadn't seen that one before.

    That said, I only resorted to it because this is a surprisingly difficult thing to search for. I know darn well that this has cropped up dozens of times just in works I've read, but Google isn't really helping. The Living Shadow page seems like a good hope, but I've seen very few of the works that it references. Anyone able to fill in a few blanks?
  • December 13, 2012
    captainpat
    You also have an Example As A Thesis. You don't need an example in your trope description when you have an example section right below it.
  • December 13, 2012
    yappydog
    Um. Okay. It's just that none of this was in the YKTTW Guidelines, and I am trying my best. Also, if we're batting Administrivia pages back and forth, doesn't Repair Dont Respond apply? You're more than welcome to make a constructive suggestion - or indeed, outright change the OP - but the purpose of the trope was clear from the Example As A Thesis, right? Could you perhaps suggest an improved introductory paragraph based on that?
  • December 15, 2012
    yappydog
    If anyone has any more examples, please add them. This is looking like a discard after all, though.
  • December 15, 2012
    DrDougsh
    Oogie Boogie's shadow during the songs "Thisis Halloween" and "Kidnap the Sandy Claws" in The Nightmare Before Christmas has both visible eyes and a mouth.
  • December 18, 2012
    TonyG
    In Mulan, Mushu's shadow when he first presents himself to Mulan has eyes.
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