[[quoteright:350:[[Disney/{{Tangled}} http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/affectionate-gesture-to-head_tangled_5907.png]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350:You must be this tall to be considered an adult.]]

->''"Just pat me."''
-->-- '''Annie Edison''', ''Series/{{Community}}''

Adults will pat the head of a child to show them they've done well, tousle the child's hair affectionately to take the sting out of a teasing comment, or do one of the former in a playfully patronizing way.

Also can be done from one adult to another if one feels protective and affectionate toward the other, or just wants to annoy them.

The gesture is done to and from people of both sexes, and can be gentle or rough, though the rough version is most common among boys and their dads/older brothers (or substitute father-figures). If it's a full noogie, expect the dad to be playfully rough, and the boy to shut one eye while letting his head move with the gesture and maybe complain.

The gesture can also be performed genuinely or insincerely. Expect the gesture to be done awkwardly by a closet ChildHater.

This is mainly true of North America. In Asian countries, this may be considered rude, due to spiritual connotations. Many people from non-Asian countries dislike the patronizing implications.

Contrast with DopeSlap, which is normally an ''UN''affectionate head pat.

'''Relational Troping:'''
* SuperTrope to: HeadbuttOfLove, in which both participants' heads are part of the gesture.
* SisterTrope to: GottaGetYourHeadTogether, which is usually one clutching at one's own head and messing up the hair.


[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* Alucard pats Seras Victoria in ''Manga/{{Hellsing}}'' after she awkwardly points out that he seems to have grown a mustache. It's the first affectionate thing he ever does towards her.
%% * In ''VisualNovel/{{Clannad}}'', Tomoya pats Nagisa.
%%% Zero-context
* ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'':
** Itachi's brotherly gesture, the forehead poke, was ''affectionate'' by definition. Very dramatic, emotionally-eliciting gesture.
** Sasuke continues the tradition by patting [[spoiler:Sakura]] before he [[spoiler:left for his journey of atonement]] at the end of the manga. [[spoiler:Sakura]] later notes that she prefers it over [[spoiler:kissing Sasuke]].
** Sasuke patted [[spoiler:his own daughter]], [[spoiler:Sarada]], at the end of ''Manga/NarutoGaiden,'' despite [[spoiler:being absent from her life for long periods of time]]. [[spoiler:His wife Sakura had previously been shown to have shown Sarada the forehead poke when she was younger]].
** Kakashi has a habit of patting his students on the head.
* ''Manga/DragonBall'':
** This is how Goku shows affection towards his sons and later his granddaughter -- patting them on their heads.
** Young Gohan is patted on the head quite frequently -- even by [[TheRival Vegeta]] -- in ''Anime/DragonBallZ''. One particular moment that stands out was during a flashback when Piccolo does this to [[BeautifulDreamer a sleeping Gohan]] and promises that he won't let anything happen to him, cementing his HeelFaceTurn and PapaWolf status towards Gohan.
* In the ''VideoGame/SengokuBasara'' anime when Shingen seems about to give a standard MegatonPunch to Yukimura but switches to patting and tousling his hair at the last second, telling him he's done well.
* ''LightNovel/{{Baccano}}'':
** General rule with ''Baccano!'': left-handed head pats are affection. Right-handed head pats? [[ImpliedDeathThreat Not so much.]]
** After thinking that he is going to die, Czeslaw gets a pat on the head from Maiza instead of having his life force sucked from him as he'd expected. [[spoiler:This, along with the love that Isaac and Miria had shown him, leads to his breaking free from his past woes.]]
** Subverted at the end of the 2002 arc with Fermet's return. His ambush of Czes is bad enough just with the massive creeper overtones he practically oozes all over his "favorite toy". When he makes it clear how ''utterly'' helpless Czes is against him... puts his right hand on Czes' forehead... and ''pets'' him before walking off to [[BreakTheCutie let the mindbreak settle]].
* In ''Anime/TigerAndBunny'', Kotetsu often pats younger characters on the head as a sort of fatherly gesture.
* In ''Manga/{{Saiyuki}}'', this is one of Sanzo's few outwardly affectionate gestures towards Goku.
* ''Manga/HeavensLostProperty'':
** Ikaros pats others a lot, usually to soothe someone who is upset. One time, she even randomly did it to a {{Yakuza}} boss. The man's bodyguards are shocked by this violation of personal space and move to attack her, but the boss stops them and enjoys it.
** Astrea ends up patting Chaos' head.
* This is essentially the signature gesture of the Kasahara/Dojo relationship in ''Anime/LibraryWar''. The first one occurred when Kasahara was in high school and Dojo was her [[MysteriousProtector "prince"]]. The next time he gave her one, it strongly reminded her of her "prince" and kickstarted their SlapSlapKiss relationship. Pretty much every important the two of them have is accompanied by one.
* In ''Anime/DogDays'', this is a trademark of Princess Millhiore. Everyone she pets comments on how soft and gentle her hands are. Cinque also does it to her and a few other girls.
** By the second season, it seems the favorite peacetime activity for all three rulers is getting petted by their respective Heroes.
* In ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'' Ed often pets Al's and Winry's heads to reassure them.
* ''Manga/GAGeijutsukaArtDesignClass'':
** Kisaragi gets patted from Noda and Tomokane after telling the story of how she came to buy a "god's pencil", then again from them plus Miyabi and Namiko after she explains that it "worked" (though it's pretty clear that practice was really what worked).
** In a chapter image, Namiko seems to be giving Tomokane and Kisaragi one of these as the younger four of the five seem to be engaged in a group hug.
* ''Manga/HidamariSketch'':
** Yuno is patted by her mother because she was worried about her father being at home alone.
** Yuno gets one from Sae and Miyako at her explanation of Hiro's setting aside an ''onigiri''.
** Yuno gets one from Nori after telling her and Nazuna why she brought them to the bathhouse.
** Nazuna gets one from her father after her mother thanks her friends for helping her, and tells her she has it good.
* ''Manga/KOn'':
** Azusa is frequently patted against her will, even though it's what Yui used to calm her down when she blew up. But she does take it better when it's employed while they're reminding her that they haven't forgotten the club. (The others had been too involved in the play to practice for the concert.)
** One time, when Nodoka jokingly asks the Hirasawa sisters if they didn't come out in the wrong order (Yui needs help with a math problem that Ui knows how to solve after glancing at it while setting tea she made down, Yui and Ui briefly interact as though they were the other way around; this gesture is part of it.
** Nodoka pats Ui in the very next strip after being randomly hugged by her.
** In ''K-On! High School'', Azusa tries to reach ''kouhai'' Sumire's head, saying "Rub... head..." as she stretches for it. Sumire takes this as a request and confusedly rubs ''Azusa's'' head.
-->'''Azusa''': No, not me!
* In one episode of ''Webcomic/AxisPowersHetalia'', France affectionately ruffles America's hair during the latter's [[Really700YearsOld hundredth birthday]].
** A darker example is [[PsychopathicManchild Russia]] and [[FragileFlower Latvia]]; Russia is seemingly very fond of the [[TinySchoolboy much smaller]] Latvia, and likes to give him affectionate -- and [[AndCallHimGeorge very crushing, due to their huge difference in strength]] -- head pats. Latvia claims that the reason he's so small is [[BodyHorror because of them]].
* Taishi of ''Manga/ServantXService'' occasionally pats younger women on their head out of unconscious habit, due to his sister.
* Usui often affectionately pats Misaki's head in ''Manga/KaichouWaMaidSama.''
* In ''Lightnovel/DateALive'' Shido tends to do these to the various spirits a lot, especially the more childlike ones. Kurumi offers Shido this [[ButThouMust choice]] in volume 7.
-->'''Kurumi''': If you donít want me to cry, you can either [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking give me one of Shidou-sanís eyeballs, or let me suck your blood, or pet my head]].
* In ''Manga/ElfenLied'' when Kurama sends Nana to capture Lucy and bring her back to the lab this is all she asks for in return, because this was how he showed affection to her.
* Grave in ''Anime/{{Gungrave}}'' often pats Mika's head. It's all [[TheQuietOne he]] needs to do to show that he cares for his little protege.
* ''Franchise/LyricalNanoha'':
** Signum does this to Fate in ''[[Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaAs A's]]'' when they change from being {{Worthy Opponent}}s to {{Friendly Rival|ry}}s.
** In something of a role-reversal, six-year-old Vivio gives her mother Nanoha a pat on the head to cheer her up during a flashback in ''[[Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaStrikers StrikerS]]''. And it's adorable.
** Nanoha also pats [[TheKnightsWhoSaySquee Subaru]] on the head at the end of the first episode of ''[=StrikerS=]'', causing her to start shedding TearsOfJoy.
** Subaru does this to Ixpellia in ''AudioPlay/StrikersSoundStageX'' right before [[spoiler: Ixpellia falls into a sleep that could last for thousands of years.]]
* In ''Anime/{{K}}: Return of Kings'', when Shiro is working hard on his research to find a solution to the issue of the second season, [[CatGirl Neko]] tells him she believes in him, and he gives her a pat on the head (because she's a cat). Then, Kuroh, the [[RedBaron "Black Dog"]] and Shiro's other teammate, tells Shiro the same thing and leans in for a split second [[ShipTease as if he wants a head-pat, too]].
* Tsurezure of ''Manga/{{Ojojojo}}'' gave his girlfriend's sister a pat on the head after finding out that she's a BitchInSheepsClothing who's trying to break them up and take her sister's place as heiress (showing that he cares about her as Haru's sister despite all that).
* ''Manga/SkipBeat'' has Kyoko and Ren play the roles of the Heel siblings Setsuka and Cain, respectively. Cain tends to affectionately pat his little sister on the head or gently ruffle her hair, even using this as a form to communicate a compliment. Kyoko also receives one of the comforting variety from a director over someone having snapped at her, and she notes how different the two gestures felt.
* ''Manga/MissKobayashisDragonMaid'':
** Kobayashi normally shows affection to Tohru, Kanna, and Ilulu by petting them on the head. It's pretty much the only way that she knows how to express affection since she has admitted to having trouble dealing with interpersonal relationships.
** Taketo pats Ilulu's head after hearing why she's so adamant on finding the owner of an abandoned doll.
* In ''Anime/{{Pokemon}} Sun and Moon'', Lusamine tousles her daughter Lillie's hair after having been apart for a while, but the latter clearly does ''not'' enjoy the rough pets.
* ''Musashi-kun to Murayama-san wa Tsukiatte Mita.'' has an entire three chapter arc devoted to Murayama trying to get Musashi to pat her head.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* During ''Comicbook/SupermanBrainiac'', Comicbook/{{Supergirl}} has a breakdown after seeing a Comicbook/{{Brainiac}} android. Franchise/{{Superman}} calms her down by hugging her and stroking her head.
* The title character of ComicBook/{{Deadpool}} does this to his daughter on occasion. At one point, after not seeing one another for over a week, they share a warm embrace, and he rests his hand on her head has she speaks. Another instance, he is in his daughter's room and they play together for a while. But he eventually has to leave for "work." [[http://ic.pics.livejournal.com/silverfang2/29185537/1110978/1110978_1000.png He gives Ellie a kiss on her forehead before he has to go.]]
* During the "Obsidian Age" arc of ''Franchise/JusticeLeagueOfAmerica'', ComicBook/MartianManhunter applies his fingers to Franchise/GreenLantern's head to try and find out why he's having visions of the League being slaughtered. Lantern jokes that in some of the alien cultures he's visited, this would make them married.
* During ''ComicBook/{{Flashpoint}}'', Traci Thirteen goes searching for allies to help her stop a plan to kill all the belligerents in the war between the Amazons and Atlantis, and ends up freeing Circe, who was locked up by the Amazons. Circe refuses to help Traci because she figures the Amazons deserve to die for locking her up, but gives the girl a kiss on the forehead for her troubles.
* In ''ComicBook/{{Runaways}}'', Nico uses an affectionate head touch to administer a spell that forces Klara to sleep after her powers get out of control. Molly, whose parents used to do the same thing to her, [[WhatTheHellHero is not pleased by this]]. Later, Molly is seen [[LapPillow cradling Klara's head in her lap]] and running her fingers through her hair.
* The last issue of Creator/GeoffJohns' run on ''ComicBook/JusticeSocietyOfAmerica'' features Ted Grant giving his son an affectionate noogie.
-->''"I'd be your sidekick any day of the week, you pain in the ass."''
** A few issues later, Hourman tousles Stargirl's hair while suggesting that the reason villains seem to be avoiding her lately is because she's so cute. His wife Liberty Bell finds this patronizing.
* ''ComicBook/JudgeDredd'': In ''Dark Justice'', a thousand of Mega-City One's wealthiest citizens decide to leave the Earth in a StarshipLuxurious after the Day of Chaos turned much of the city into a ruin. When a reporter at the launch ceremony asks what the people who can't afford a seat are supposed to do, the spokesperson gives him a condescending pat on the head.

[[folder:Fan Works]]
* ''Fanfic/AdviceAndTrust'': In chapter 8 Shinji rubbed the top of Asuka's head while she was resting on his lap.
* ''Fanfic/TheChildOfLove'': After kissing and confessing during a festival Shinji and Asuka cuddled together. Shinji brushed away stray locks from her face as they snuggled up.
-->''She rests her head against Shinji's shoulder, and he gently brushes some hair away from his redheaded goddess' face.''
* ''Fanfic/ChildrenOfAnElderGod'': In chapter 4 while they are talking, Kaji ruffles Asuka's hair in a paternal, placating way.
-->''Kaji laughed and ruffled her hair.''
* In the ''Franchise/BackToTheFuture'' fanfic ''FanFic/IchLiebeDich'', Doc absentmindedly strokes Marty's hair while the teen is asleep.
* ''Fanfic/GhostsOfEvangelion'': After having a talk with her teen daughter about the War, Asuka tugs a lock of her hair.
-->Asuka shrugged. "Sort of. But don't worry about it. You're a good kid, so you're worth the trouble." She tugged a lock of Ryuko's hair. "Even if you are a delinquent."
* In the start of the third arc of ''ComicBook/{{Supergirl}}'' story ''Fanfic/HellsisterTrilogy'', Dev-Em sits down beside Kara and strokes her head in a reassuring way as she's having a break-down.
-->Dev crouched beside her and stroked her hair, gently.
* ''Fanfic/{{HERZ}}'': In chapter 2 Asuka wakes up after a terrible nightmare. As he reassures her, Shinji strokes her red bangs.
-->''"Shuuussh," he said soothingly, smoothly the damn auburn locks on her forehead as he propped her up on the pillows.''
* In ''Fanfic/KyonBigDamnHero'', Kyon tousles his little sister's hair pretty much whenever he sees her.
* ''Fanfic/LastChildOfKrypton'': After [[spoiler:beating Sachiel]] Shinji got Rei out of Unit 01 and caressed her head as he asked what happened to her.
* There is a ''VideoGame/{{Touhou}}'' doujinshi where a very drunk Sanae asks to be patted on the head and called a "good girl". This has become something of a meme in the Touhou fandom.
* ''Fanfic/TheSecondTry'': [[spoiler:Aki]] has this a lot of her loving parents in this story and ''[[Webcomic/AkiChansLife the sequel]]'' as seen [[http://jimmywolk.studenten-froendenberg.de/eng/aki.php?browse.4.101 here]].
* In ''Fanfic/FieldOfInnocence,'' [[BigBrotherMentor Lu Ten]] ruffles his little cousin Zuko's hair before leaving for the Earth Kingdom.
* In ''Fanfic/ThousandShinji'', Shinji stroked Asuka's hair to reassure her after an argument while they were swimming in a pool.
* ''Fanfic/NeonGenesisEvangelionGenocide'' gives several examples:
** In chapter 9, Asuka tries to reassure [[spoiler:Keiko]] by rubbing her head.
--->The redhead didn't feel like she was moving until she had placed her hand on the other girl's head, leaning over her, and stroked her hair in a gesture of unthinkable compassion just a few minutes ago.
** In chapter 15, Misato pats Shinjiís head before a synch test.
--->Misato stepped over to her wards, patted Shinji on the head and smiled at Asuka.
* In ''[[Fanfic/TwiceUponAnAge All This Sh*t is Twice as Weird]]'', Mahanon occasionally tugs on the end of Victoria's braid in a big brother type of gesture.
* Ash's Duskull in ''[[https://www.fanfiction.net/s/11803928/19/Challenger Challenger]]'' shows affection by tapping people's foreheads and likes to have his mask tapped in return.

[[folder:Film -- Animated]]
* ''WesternAnimation/CasperTheFriendlyGhost'': In ''Casper: A Spirited Beginning'', Fatso strokes Casper on the head while lying about them being uncle and nephew. It happens again in ''Film/CasperMeetsWendy'', where Fatso strokes Casper on the head after his uncles and the witches save him and Wendy, and once more in ''Casper's Haunted Christmas'' when they, Stretch, Stinkie, Spooky, and Pearl are being banished to "The Dark".
* In Disney's ''Disney/{{Tangled}}''. Mother Gothel gives these to Rapunzel ''a lot'' - she pats Rapunzel "sweetly" on the head as a gesture of "affection" but also to remind her that she's dumb, helpless, naive, ditzy, etc. [[CharacterDevelopment It is a sign that Rapunzel has grown up]] that she blocks the gesture and grabs Gothel's wrist once Rapunzel realizes who she is.
* In Disney's ''Disney/{{Tarzan}}'', the infant who will end up as Tarzan gets a ''genuine'' ruffle of his hair by his human father during the opening of the movie, for pointing out a great tree to build in.
* In ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsonsMovie'', a kid in a commercial asks Creator/TomHanks to tousle his hair. Magic sparkles appear as he does.
* At the end of ''Disney/AtlantisTheLostEmpire'', Milo is saying goodbye to all his friends. When he comes to [[ThePigPen Mole]], who offers a big hug, he hesitates before patting his head instead.
* In ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory3'', Bonnie's mother gently strokes her daughter's hair before she steps up to Andy to accept his toys.
* ''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast'':
** The Beast strokes Belle's hair and cheek when they're having romantic moments.
** After the curse is broken, Belle sort of brushes Beast's hair so she can better see his face, before they kiss.
* In ''Disney/BrotherBear'', after they've become friends, it's not uncommon for Kenai to noogie his little brother, Koda.
* By the second act of ''Disney/OliverAndCompany'', a sign that normally aloof Dodger is warming to Oliver is the street dog tousling the kitten's fur.
* In ''Disney/TheLionKing'', after scolding Simba for going to the elephant graveyard and almost getting himself and Nala killed by hyenas, Mufasa gives his son a playful noogie to let him know he's forgiven.

[[folder:Film -- Live Action]]
* In ''Film/GranTorino'', Creator/ClintEastwood pats the head of a child in a Hmong household as a gesture of kindness; the family of the child is shocked by this due to their cultural differences.
* Plot-relevant in ''Film/DefinitelyMaybe'', as recognizing the gesture is how Maya works out which of the women in the story is her mother.
* ''Film/{{War Games}}''. During the movie, Dr. [=McKittrick=] had been suspicious of and antagonistic toward David Lightman. At the end, after Lightman had prevented WorldWarIII, Dr. [=McKittrick=] tousled his hair in a friendly way.
* Boromir pats Frodo in ''Film/LordOfTheRings'' during their attempted trek over Caradhras. After picking up the Ring, he gives it back to Frodo only after an order from Aragorn. He ruffles Frodo's hair to lighten the mood, but the Fellowship stay wary.
* ''Film/XMenApocalypse'': [[Characters/XMenFilmSeriesProfessorCharlesXavier Charles Xavier]] tenderly caresses [[Characters/XMenFilmSeriesJeanGrey Jean Grey]]'s forehead to calm her down after she becomes agitated by an apocalyptic vision. It's also a visual cue that they have a surrogate father-daughter relationship.
* ''Film/{{Thor}}'': Odin caresses the head of an abandoned Jötunn infant [[spoiler:who would later grow up to be [[Characters/MCULoki Loki]]]] in order for it to stop crying.
* ''Film/LaReineMargot'' pets her brothers' hair when they are upset about her wedding night. And again Margot pets Charles when he is crying after the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre.
* ''Film/AdeleHasntHadHerDinnerYet'': Police commissioner Ledvina comforts detective Nick Carter when he was recovering from the attack by The Gardener's chamberlain. TapOnTheHead ''and'' chloroform? He deserved the affectionate pat, plus Ledvina promised him fresh air and beer drinking, if he would feel up to it.
* In ''Film/TheLastPictureShow'', Sonny often shows his affection towards Billy by taking his cap off and putting it back on.
* ''Film/TheQuickAndTheDead''. [[NoNameGiven Lady]] is curt in response to [[TagalongKid Katie]]'s adoration, until just before her first gunfight when Katie assures her she will win; the Lady then strokes Katie's hair in thanks. Subverted when she does win.
-->'''Katie:''' Lady, I think you're great!
-->'''Lady:''' ''(pushing past her)'' [[YourApprovalFillsMeWithShame Grow up]].
* At the end of ''Film/{{Attenberg}}'', Marina gives Bella an odd affectionate gesture to the head just before [[spoiler:Bella goes to have sex with Marina's dying father]].
* ''Film/TheNameOfTheRose''.
** Brother William strokes the hair of his novice Adso as he tosses in his bed from a nightmare. Adso grabs hold of his hand in his sleep, leaving William standing there holding a lamp in one hand that he can't put down, yet reluctant to pull his hand free. He leans awkwardly against the wall instead.
** Earlier a friar strokes the back of Adso's head in a creepy manner while making some rather homoerotic comments.
* ''Film/TheTerminator''. Kyle Reece strokes the hair of a sleeping Sarah Connor, only to quickly snatch his hand away when the gesture wakes her up. This is after the flashback scene [[LoveBeforeFirstSight showing he kept a photograph of her as a treasured possession in the future]].

* In ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'', Jon shows his affection to Arya by mussing up her hair. Arya later misses having him do this to her.
* ''Literature/PercyJacksonAndTheOlympians:'' [[GoodParents Sally]] pets and ruffles Percy's hair often, especially if they haven't seen each other in a while. It's particularly noticeable in the first book, when she's pretty much the only person who he allows physical affection from.
* ''Literature/DavidCopperfield'':
** When Miss Betsey Trotwood visits David's mother Clara Copperfield, who is very pregnant and very sad over her dead husband, she seems very determined, opinionated, stubborn and almost rude. However, at one moment she gently touched Clara's hair ("she had a fancy that she felt Miss Betsey touch her hair, and that with no ungentle hand"). When Clara had a boy instead of a girl that Miss Betsey had wanted to take care of, she left the little family abruptly. Later in the narrative, David is unsure if Miss Betsey will help him from the evils of child labour and poverty, but he remembers the story (told by his mother and their servant-girl Pegotty) and he keeps thinking particularly about this gesture of kindness, and hopes that Miss Betsey will be kind to him as well.
---> ''My aunt walked into that story, and walked out of it, a dread and awful personage; but there was one little trait in her behaviour which I liked to dwell on, and which gave me some faint shadow of encouragement. I could not forget how my mother had thought that she felt her touch her pretty hair with no ungentle hand; and though it might have been altogether my motherís fancy, and might have had no foundation whatever in fact, I made a little picture, out of it, of my terrible aunt relenting towards the girlish beauty that I recollected so well and loved so much, which softened the whole narrative.''
** Soon after Mr Murdstone meets little David and his young widowed mother, he pats him on his head, but David dislikes him very much, and dislikes the thought that he is interested in his mother.
* In ''Literature/DragonBones'' Ward tries to snap Oreg out of one of his PTSD-induced flashbacks by touching his head, as every other part of his body is horribly injured (Oreg is so powerful a mage that he re-lives the past in a physical sense without being able to control it). He also says Oreg's name ... which makes him look stupid when his uncle sees it, as Oreg is invisible to most people.
* In the ''Literature/OctoberDaye'' novel ''One Salt Sea'', the scary, unaffectionate Luidaeg gives Quentin's hair an affectionate ruffle.
* In ''Cheaper by the Dozen'' by Frank Gilbreth Jr. and Ernestine Gilbreth Carey, there is a part when the children's Aunt Anne comes to visit and Billy pushes her over the edge to the point where she yanks his hair. They get on better terms with each other, though, to the point where Aunt Anne gives Billy one of these.
* The ''Literature/XWingSeries'' has Han Solo once vigorously muss up Wedge Antilles' hair as demonstration of the fact that he can get away with a lot as a General. For the record, they're friends.
* Used contemptuously in ''Literature/GalaxyOfFear''. Young Tash takes offense to SecondFaceSmoke, but this amuses the smoker, who puts a hand on her head and looms over her, then spins her towards the BadGuyBar door and shoves her. He's a serial killer, so she's fortunate he was amused. [[spoiler: Later [[GrandTheftMe his brain]] ends up [[GenderBender in her skull]].]]
* In the ''Literature/LuckyStarr'' series, Lucky [[HoYay often]] tousles his smaller sidekick Bigman's hair to show affection. In ''Lucky Starr and the Rings of Saturn'', the affection is mixed with frustration, and Lucky goes as far as to "[seize] Bigman's hair affectionately and [tug] his head back and forth".

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''Series/GameOfThrones'':
** Subverted when Daenerys isn't happy about her ArrangedMarriage to some savage horselord, so Prince Viserys strokes his sister's face in reassurance...while telling her he'd let Khal Drogo's entire army (and their horses) fuck her if that's what it took to get his throne back.
** Davos gives Shireen a kiss on the forehead for prompting his EurekaMoment in "Breaker of Chains".
** Volantenes believe it's good luck to rub a dwarf's head and aren't shy about doing it without permission. Tyrion is not amused.
* In ''Series/StargateSG1'', Jack sometimes gently ruffles or smooths Daniel's hair to show affection or to comfort himself if he's worried about Daniel. He also does it to annoy Daniel sometimes.
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'':
** Buffy stroking Dawn's hair.
** Anya patting Dawn, but as it's meant to be a patronizing gesture, it only annoys her.
** Another surrogate-parent relationship: [[EvenEvilHasLovedOnes Mayor Wilkins strokes Faith's hair when she's hospitalized in "Graduation Day"]].
* In ''Series/{{Smallville}}'':
** Clark pats Lana quite a bit.
** Whitney to Lana.
** Chloe tenderly pats Clark, who is unconscious, in "Fever".
** Clark pats Chloe in "Onyx" when [[spoiler:evil (well, eviler) Lex]] knocked her out cold.
** Clark gently touches Chloe in "Abyss" along with a forehead kiss [[spoiler:before wiping her memories of his secret]].
** Clark and Lois start patting each other's head after they drop the VitriolicBestBuds facade and start acknowledging their mutual attraction.
%% ** In "Devoted", Lois pats (who?).
* ''Series/UchuSentaiKyuranger'': [[IneffectualLoner Stinger]] sometimes pats [[KidHero Kotaro]] on the head in comforting manner as big brother to younger brother.
* Played with on the kids game show ''Series/{{Double Dare|1986}}''. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R3VD95RIn-4&t=7m41s In one of the physical challenges]] A contestant would have a slime filed balloon put on her hat, and then sit down receiving a pat on the head from a giant hand. This would break the balloon leaving her CoveredInGunge.
* In series one, episode one of ''Series/JeevesAndWooster'', Bingo Little pats Oliver Glossup (the boy he's tutoring) during dinner, dismissing something the boy just said.
* ''Series/{{Community}}'', as is expected of such a troperiffic show, discussed this. Jeff and Annie's relationship is characterized by him being an older brother to her, except that the increasing sexual tension is making that awkward and they can't keep it up, meaning their relationship has to evolve. The discussion ends with "We can't keep doing this kiddo," with a gentle chuck of the chin. "Can't we?" [long pause], "No, it's gross."
* JJ from ''Series/{{Skins}}'' is forever having his hair ruffled; he's well aware that it's mostly patronizing.
-->''"Then I'd tell Freddie and Cook to stop fighting over Effy before they hate each other forever, and not make me take sides. And they'd listen to me for once and not fucking ruffle my hair!"''\\
And then about two minutes later, Karen [Freddie's sister] does exactly that.
* ''Series/TheXFiles'': Mulder and Scully would frequently touch each other's forehead, stroke each other's hair, hold each other's head or cup each other's face. UnresolvedSexualTension at its best.
* ''Series/{{NCIS}}'': The jury is still out as to whether Gibbsí [[DopeSlap dope slaps]] to [=DiNozzo=] are kind gestures or an attempt to stop him being so... erm... so [=DiNozzo=]. [=DiNozzo=] claims he's sure they're affectionate. In one of Ziva's first episodes, she takes it as both a sign of affection and a badge of honour to receive one from Gibbs, so the reality is that it's a combination of both.
* "The Duchess and the Devil" from ''Series/HoratioHornblower'' has this trope all over the place.
** The Duchess of Wharfedale is a lady who is cheeky, spirited, older yet still sexy as hell. She gently touches Horatio's face when she teases him about not having any razors to shave himself because he's in Spanish jail. That lady knows how to flirt.
** The Duchess affectionately strokes Archie Kennedy's forehead when he lies in bed, slowly recovering [[spoiler:from his suicide attempt by starvation]]. Lucky Duchess and lucky [[PrettyBoy Archie]].
** Horatio caresses Archie's head and loose hair when he tries to take care of him and nurse him into health. He also hands him a cup of water and tries to make him drink. These are extremely intense hurt/comfort moments between HeterosexualLifePartners.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'':
** The first technical Doctor/companion kiss on the whole show is when the Second Doctor kisses Zoe on the forehead in "The War Games".
** The Third Doctor toys with Liz's hair when she's helping him round after an attempted assassination via DeadlyGas in "The Ambassadors of Death".
** In "Pyramids of Mars", there is a fairly extended scene where Sarah Jane very thoroughly massages and cuddles the Doctor's head while he's coming round to consciousness. Judging by his expression, he enjoys it quite a lot.
** In "Shada", Chris allows the Doctor to wire his brain up to a man left braindead by a particularly brutal MindRape. The Doctor hooks him up to the machine, realises that Chris is finding it excruciatingly painful, and kisses him on the forehead out of pity. Then he kisses the Mind Rape victim on his forehead, 'for luck'.
** [[TheNthDoctor The Eleventh Doctor]] is very fond of kissing companions and loved ones on the forehead as a reassuring gesture.
** The [[http://oi40.tinypic.com/4ilizd.jpg Third Doctor gives Jo Grant a kiss]] (something he rarely gives a companion, let alone anyone else) on the forehead after finding her safe and sound in "Colony in Space". Both Creator/JonPertwee and Creator/KatyManning seem to [[NoHuggingNoKissing fumble awkwardly]] in the lead-up to it.
** Towards the end of her time on the series, stroking the Twelfth Doctor's cheek becomes Clara Oswald's default mode of expressing affection for him when a hug won't do. (In their final episode together, the Doctor was originally scripted to finally return the favour, but the scene was shot differently.) This replaced slapping the Doctor which Clara did (or threatened to do) a surprising number of times in their first season together.
** In "The Doctor Falls", Bill Potts is subject to UnwillingRobotization and thinks that everyone will shun her from now on. The Doctor shows otherwise by brushing the SingleTear from her cheek.
* Towards the end of the first season of ''Series/{{Homeland}}'', Tom Walker ties up an old woman and uses her home as a sniping post. After he's finished, he musses her hair before leaving.
* In the ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'' episode [[Recap/SupernaturalS02E20WhatIsAndWhatShouldNeverBe "What Is And What Should Never Be" (S02, Ep20)]], the Mary Winchester in the wishverse stroke's Dean's face and kisses him on the forehead.
* ''Series/{{FridayNightLights}}'' once had Tim Riggins kiss Becky on the forehead as both an apology and a promise to come back for her.
* The titular serial killer in ''Series/{{Hannibal}}'' is creepily fond of stroking and caressing his victims' faces as he kills them.
* ''Series/{{Lucifer}}''. In "God Johnson", Lucifer and God (inhabiting a human body) are StrollingThroughTheChaos of a riot in a mental hospital. God gets a feather from a torn pillow stuck in his hair, which Lucifer removes. Despite Lucifer's [[DaddyIssues resentment of God]] being an ongoing theme, it's clear some part of Lucifer still loves his father and enjoys spending time with Him again.
* In an early arc of ''Series/KamenRiderDouble'', the heroes protect a politician whose daughter is convinced that Double is her father (who was assassinated the year before). Philip researches her father and, at the end of the arc, Double says goodbye to her by performing the very specific head-pat he would give her every day before going to work.

[[folder:Newspaper Comics]]
* {{Lampshaded}} in one strip of ''ComicStrip/{{Dilbert}}'', the PointyHairedBoss is criticizing Dilbert's work (while not being overly specific as to what's wrong). As Dilbert becomes more frustrated, the boss asks Dilbert to "come here so I may pat your head in a condescending manner".
-->'''Dogbert:''' So you took the pat on the head?\\
'''Dilbert:''' I didn't want to leave empty handed.

[[folder:Pro Wrestling]]
* Wrestling/DanaBrooke is fond of patting someone's hair, except it's more patronizing than affectionate - usually to interviewers after a promo. In some cases, she asks the main male interviewer for NXT (who is considerably taller) to squat down so she can reach.

* Quite commonplace in professional team sports, and considered a bit less HoYay than a pat on the backside.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaAsPortable: The Gears of Destiny'', [[UnfinishedBusiness Dark Piece]] [[ParentalSubstitute Rynith]] gives one to Levi the Slasher after the two properly introduced themselves. Turns out, TheBerserker BloodKnight likes it.
--> '''Levi:''' Nehehe~, feel free to pat me more~!
* UsefulNotes/OdaNobunaga pats GenkiGirl Xiao Qiao's head in the Sengoku ending of ''VideoGame/WarriorsOrochi''.
* In ''VideoGame/TheIncredibleHulkUltimateDestruction'' whenever you pick up a civilian, you can choose to put them down with a gentle pat on the head instead of throwing them into the horizon like the Hulk usually does when he picks someone up.
* Rusl gives a hair ruffle to his son Colin at the beginning of ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaTwilightPrincess''.
* ''VideoGame/{{Undertale}}'':
** Toriel gently pets the player on the head when they first enter her house and she shows them their new room. No surprise why fans quickly took to calling her [[FanNickname Goatmom]].
** Parodied during [[spoiler: the "date" with Alphys. Undyne hugs a depressed Alphys and pats her on the head... then tosses her into a trash can like a basketball before shouting an encouraging speech at her.]]
** In an EasterEgg in the [[BonusDungeon True Lab]], [[spoiler: lying down in one of the beds causes a ghostly ''creature'' to appear beside it, and slowly reach out to Frisk...To reach down to tuck them in, and pat them on the head. It would be [[CreepyCute cute, if it weren't creepy as well]].]]
* VideoGame/TomodachiLife: One of the things a player can do with the Mii is use the stylus to pat their head. While doing so, it first gets a relaxed expression, then a happy one; letting go of the stylus will make it jump up and gain a small chunk of XP.
-->"It looks like he/she really liked that!"
* In ''VideoGame/LoveLiveSchoolIdolFestival'', one of the things Nozomi will say on the home screen as your center is, "Once you clear your goals, I'll give you a pat on the head" ("[[KansaiRegionalAccent Uchi wa yoshi-yoshi shiteageru yan]]").
* In the ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfHeroesTrailsOfColdSteel'' games, Sara likes doing this to Fie, who puts up with it but tells Sara how annoying she finds it. Laura's father also does this to her when they see each other again for the first time in months. Laura is more embarrassed that the gesture is seen by her classmates than by the gesture itself. Rean also has a tendency to do it to any girl he's close to (Alisa, Towa, and Elise are all on the receiving end, much to their collective frustration).
* In ''[[VideoGame/FireEmblemElibe Fire Emblem: Binding Blade]]'', Thite upsets Shanna by criticizing her recklessness. She tries to imitate their big sister Juno by patting her on the head--only Thite is an AloofBigSister, so Shanna goes from being upset to weirded out. (She does say she appreciates the effort in their next support conversation.)

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* Rin's flashback in the prologue of ''VisualNovel/FateStayNight'' features a scene where her father pats her on the head. She remarks that because it's the first time he's ever done so, he's using far too much strength and dragging her head around as he does it.
* ''VisualNovel/MyGirlfriendIsThePresident'': Jun often pats Yukino, and it always causes her worries to vanish instantly. Jun even complains that she's too simple-minded. He also does it to Ell in her route, and it works so well that, whenever Jun looks concerned, she starts doing it to him as well. It also works that way, though obviously more because of the cuteness than anything else.
* Harada Sanosuke in ''VisualNovel/{{Hakuouki}}'' distributes these regularly to Chizuru and Ryuunosuke.
* ''VisualNovel/HigurashiWhenTheyCry'':
** Satoshi Hojo had a habit of doing this, especially to his sister Satoko, before he disappeared. So much that when Keiichi does it to her in ''Tatarigoroshi-hen'', it actually triggers her and causes her to StressVomit.
** Rika pats people when they're feeling down. While most people assume that she's comforting them, she's actually mocking them.
** This used to be done to [[spoiler:Miyo]] as a child by her dad. A noticeably sad example happens after he gets into a severe automobile accident. He's bandaged near completely and his arm has been amputated but he tries to comfort [[spoiler:Miyo]] but can't. He dies moments later.
* ''VisualNovel/KatawaShoujo'': Towards the end of Lilly's route just before she [[spoiler: leaves for Scotland]] Lilly is saying her goodbyes to both her [[HeterosexualLifePartners best friend ]],Hanoko, and boyfriend Hisao. Hisao is resigned but Hanako is reluctant to say goodbye and literally holds onto her. Lilly eventually firmly but gently disengages Hanoko from her arm and gives her a quiet reassuring speech, during which she tells Hanoko she [[PlatonicDeclarationOfLove loves her very much]] and gently pushes Hanoko's hair back from her face and kisses her on the forehead. The gesture almost moves Hanoko to tears and temporarily renders her all but speechless.
* ''VisualNovel/CinderellaPhenomenon'': Delora gently pushes Lucette's hair back from her face while comforting her in Fritz route.

* ''Webcomic/CharbyTheVampirate'':
** Bert ruffles Blaine's hair after giving him a near lecture about entering the woods on his own when he learns Blaine did so thinking he heard a child in danger from a werewolf.
** Charby gives Victor a friendly, if unwanted, noogie when the two reconcile after [[spoiler: Victor tells Charby to stay away from him and that their friendship is over when Blaine makes it clear he won't tolerate his hunters befriending "monsters"]].
* ''Webcomic/TheDevilsPanties'': A security guard condescendingly pats Jennie on the head in [[http://thedevilspanties.com/archives/5939 this comic]].
* In ''Webcomic/{{Drowtales}}'', Nei'kalsa Tions Sarghress keeps her hand placed on the head of her younger brother Sar'nel as the two are made to watch [[spoiler: Ariel]] beat [[spoiler: Mir'kiin]] to death.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/CaspersScareSchool'': Mantha and Stretch stroke Casper on the head in "Vote for Casper" and "What Possessed You?" respectively.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'': In an [[ShowWithinAShow educational film]], Troy [=McClure=] pats little Tommy at the end.
-->'''Tommy:''' You're...hurting...me.
* ''WesternAnimation/TomAndJerry'': "Professor Tom" has Tom teaching mousing to a kitten. When the kitten does a good job, he gets a pat on the head.
* ''WesternAnimation/HowTheGrinchStoleChristmas'' has the titular Grinch patting Cindy Lou Who on the head before he gives her a drink and sends her back to bed.
* In a certain comic based on ''ComicBook/ThePowerpuffGirls'', Buttercup gets annoyed with the Mayor's constant patting her on the head, to the point where she punches his lights out after repeatedly telling him to stop.
* A standard gesture of affection among WesternAnimation/{{Gargoyles}}, the equivalent of kissing.
* ''WesternAnimation/GreenLanternTheAnimatedSeries'': Hal does a "tousle the hair" to Amaya -- an alien without hair -- when showing her a kindness over a family loss.
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic'':
** In [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS1E5GriffonTheBrushOff "Griffon the Brush Off"]], Pinkie Pie gives one to Fluttershy right before Gilda's party, and actually manages the very rare feat of annoying her.
--->'''Pinkie Pie:''' Don't worry your pretty little head about mean old Gilda. Your auntie Pinkie Pie's got it all taken care of!
--->'''Fluttershy:''' I'm a year older than you.
** In [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS2E7MayTheBestPetWin "May the Best Pet Win"]], Rainbow Dash gives a condescending pat on the head to Twilight Sparkle, when she asks if "coolness", "awesomeness" and "radicalness" aren't all the same thing.
--> '''Rainbow Dash:''' You would think so. And that is why ''you'' would never qualify to be ''my'' pet.
** In [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS2E5SisterhoovesSocial "Sisterhooves Social"]], Rarity's father gives Sweetie Belle a tousle as he praises her cooking. She clearly appreciates it.
** In [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS2E11FamilyAppreciationDay "Family Appreciation Day"]], Apple Bloom is patted by her Uncle Apple Strudel and Granny Smith.
** In [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS2E8TheMysteriousMareDoWell "The Mysterious Mare Do Well"]], Rainbow Dash gives Scootaloo a tousle/noogie when she thinks that Scootaloo's there to apologize.
** Twilight gets a few of these in [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS2E25ACanterlotWeddingPart1 "A Canterlot Wedding"]].
** Fluttershy gets one of these from Pinkie Pie again in [[Recap/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicS4E18MaudPie Maud Pie]] when Pinkie tells her that the rocks used to make the rock candy are a secret.
** Fluttershy again gets these from her younger brother, Zephyr Breeze, in "Flutter Brutter".
* ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans'': "Call All Titans": Jericho reaches down and pats an exhausted Beast Boy on the head after he climbs all the way to the top of the mountain to give Jericho a communicator.
* ''WesternAnimation/TransformersRescueBots'': Cody is frequently the recipient of head pats and hair tousles by every human adult on the show.
* ''WesternAnimation/StevenUniverse'': Garnet pats Steven Universe fairly often, enough so that it is seen in the opening. While all the gems are very affectionate towards Steven, it's especially noticable due to Garnet's normally stoic demeanor.
* ''WesternAnimation/GravityFalls'': Grunkle Stan will occasionally give some "affectionate noogie-ing" to his great nephew and niece Dipper and Mabel.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/ReadyJetGo'' episode "Face on the Fritz", Dr. Rafferty rubs Sean's head after he figures out a code.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Kaeloo}}'': One episode had [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold Mr. Cat]] pat Stumpy on the head in a big-brotherly way.