[[quoteright:283:[[{{Storm}} http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/283px-Storm_MvsC3-FTW_5748.PNG]]]]

Generally a SuperHero trope, but used in other settings as well, where a character fights in a skintight leotard, or, more generally, a swimsuit-esque one piece. In fairness this isn't ''always'' fanservice, since the leotard, like the classic tights+"underwear on the outside", originates as acrobats' garb.

One of the leotard's advantages is that it is more "modest" or less revealing than a two-piece garment like a bikini, and thus for a long time was used in comics, games, TV shows and media to convey the portrayal of a ''[[RuleOfSexy sexy]]'' female character (or at least, ''"bold"'') without enraging {{Moral Guardians}}. Note that also, back in {{the Eighties}} and {{the Nineties}} the leotard (or one piece swimsuit) was ''"the"'' ultimate in fashion clothing, being much more popular than the two-piece garments and portrayed in aerobics shows, ''Series/{{Baywatch}}'' and the such, so it can be used in [[NostalgiaFilter retro references]] too.

Similar to UnderwearOfPower, some females who wear this may suffer a GroinAttack at least once either for comedy, {{Fanservice}}, or simply for her enemy to really humiliate her. Especially for a [[{{Superhero}} Superheroine]] it's not uncommon because, surprisingly, some of them may be weak in that spot.

This is a {{Fanservice}} trope, the backbone of MostCommonSuperPower. Essentially a cross between SensualSpandex and ShowSomeLeg.

Compare MinidressOfPower, PlayboyBunny, ShesGotLegs, ShowgirlSkirt, UnderwearOfPower (which is often worn in a way that pretty much looks like a leotard anyway), WalkingSwimsuitScene, SuperheroesWearTights.
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!!Examples

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* ''Anime/CodeGeass'' Anya Alstreim is the main symbol.
** There's also Luciano Bradley's Valerie Squadron.
** ''NightmareOfNunnally'', Anya again, Alice after making her contract with Nemo, Marianne in her days as a Nightmare pilot.
%%* ''Franchise/SailorMoon'' and company. With a tiny thing that some would say qualifies as a skirt attached. Some of the female villains as well.
* ''MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha''
** Fate Testarossa. With even less skirt than the Sailor Senshi.
** The uniform of most of the [=N2R=] Nakajima Sisters formed after ''MagicalGirlLyricalNanoha [=StrikerS=]'', which is a leotard with a jacket and chaps worn over it. The only exception is Cinque, who wears a miniskirt with leggings instead.
* Major Motoko Kusanagi from ''GhostInTheShell'' wears a leotard with a jacket over it, and really long stockings. She later gets pants. For some odd reason, the fan consensus is that getting the pants improves her character.
* Kodachi Kunō of ''RanmaOneHalf'' will readily [[FlungClothing fling her clothes]] to reveal the leotard she wears underneath with little provocation. Somewhat "justified" by her [[MartialArtsAndCrafts martial art]] being based on rhythmic gymnastics... but mainly because she's a shameless loon.
** Played with a couple of times when Ranma in female form and dressed in a leotard finds herself changed to her male form suddenly.
* Not during the fighting part of the manga, but ''MahouSenseiNegima'' has plenty of gratuitous scenes of Makie performing her rhythmic gymnastics. And it's a flashy routine -- every time we see her practicing in anything ''other'' than her leotard, she gives a ''lot'' of {{Panty Shot}}s.
* The [[spoiler:seven surviving]] title {{Claymore}}s wear an outfit like this after the time skip, often with a variant of a short skirt or ZettaiRyouiki.
* ''[[KenichiTheMightiestDisciple History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi]]'': Miu Furinji's leotard, which bears more resemblance to body paint than clothing.
* Ryoko's skintight battlesuit from ''TenchiMuyo''
* In ''{{Gunbuster}}'', the official uniform of the Earth Defense Force's HumongousMecha pilots looks like a one-piece swimsuit with a sweatshirt over it.
* All of the Kisugi sisters from ''Manga/CatsEye'' wear one. Of course, despite what some sources say, their leotards are actually [[SpyCatsuit unitards]].
* ''SaintSeiya'': All of the Amazons have these as their trainers.
* This is actually the default pilot suit (complete with ZettaiRyouki) used in ''InfiniteStratos''. Well, save for [[TheOneGuy Ichika]]'s that is...
* ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'': For the climactic battle with Aizen, Yoruichi is wearing one of these.
* BusouRenkin: (Male) villain Pampillon's outfit is...uh...rather fabulous and definitely off-putting.
* The standard MagicalGirl outfit in ''Anime/OkusamaWaMahouShoujo'' is one, plus frills and other accessories.
* Lala's default costume in ToLoveRU is this, as it's basically a parody of Magical Girl outfits. And is a [[VoluntaryShapeshifting shapeshifting]] [[RobotGirl robot]] named Peke. It's also called "Dress Form", despite having more in they way of large frills on the sides than a full skirt.
* Liu Li's first military outfit in ''Manhua/SchoolShock''.
* Kasumi Asou from ''Manga/CityHunter'', who is as an acrobatic [[JustLikeRobinHood Robin Hood-like phantom thief.]]
* Church assassins Xenovia and Irina from ''LightNovel/HighschoolDxD'' wear painted-on bodysuits in battle. Accordingly, they're [[FragileSpeedster Fragile Speedsters]], relying on maneuverability and holy artifacts their targets can't touch to get the upper hand.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comics]]
* Creator/DCComics pretty much made this trope; nearly every other DC Comics superhero or superheroine wears a Leotard of Power, if not wearing UnderwearOfPower instead:
** WonderWoman is the classic example, which is [[LampshadeHanging lampshaded]] in ''JusticeLeague'', where Gordon Godfrey snarkingly compares her to a showgirl. Also played with in the movie, when Steve Trevor says "Let's get you into an outfit that doesn't get me arrested for solicitation."
*** There was an attempt to avert it with a jacket/pants update. It didn't last long.
*** During the 1970s, Wonder Woman went through a big makeover, which also didn't last too long. She sometimes wore a fringed jacket and pants and sometimes wore a dress cut off just below the crotch (like a dress version of a miniskirt; I'm sure this has a formal name, but I don't know what it is). Both of these still managed to show a lot of leg, because of the shortness of the dress and the fact that the pants had large circular holes in them running down the outside of the leg.
*** Wonder Woman's ''{{New 52}}'' outfit was set to be another aversion, until her creative team opted for something closer to her traditional look. Certain covers and promotional images were even released with "pants" and "no pants" versions.
** PhantomLady is the trope founder
** Just one of the many fanservices given to us by PowerGirl.
** Franchise/{{Batman}}'s foe Poison Ivy wears a leotard made of leaves. Given that she's practically MsFanservice, it's not really surprising.
** ComicBook/{{Huntress}}: The Earth Two version wears one all the time, the PostCrisis version less consistently so.
** Star Sapphire
** Starfire (When her costume isn't a ChainmailBikini, anyway.) In ''ComicBook/FiftyTwo'' she's mistaken for a stripper after showing up on someone's doorstep.
** ComicBook/BlackCanary wears this with the addition of fishnets and a leather jacket.
** ComicBook/{{Zatanna}} wears a shirt and jacket over the top half. That's because it's a classic magician look, it's her shtick. She also wears fishnet stockings, apparently because the leotard itself didn't scream "stripper" loud enough.
** [[{{Hawkman}} Hawkgirl / Hawkwoman]], during TheGoldenAgeOfComicBooks and TheSilverAgeOfComicBooks. PostCrisis, she switched to a [[BareYourMidriff two-piece costume]].
** ComicBook/{{Supergirl}}'s outfit was always leotard-ish, but she typically covered her hips with a skirt of at least mid-thigh length until the ComicBook/{{New 52}} reboot, which made it a straight up leotard with ThighHighBoots.
** Both Dick Grayson and Jason Todd wore one during their time as Comicbook/{{Robin}}, what with their costumes being based on Dick's circus leotard. One issue of ''[[ComicBook/TeenTitans New Teen Titans]]'' has Dick removing the shirt to his Robin costume revealing that the part of his costume that appears to be green trunks are actually the bottom part of a green leotard covering his entire torso. [[DependingOnTheWriter This varies from writer to writer]], because sometimes they actually are depicted as green trunks.
** Even the DC-published ''Animaniacs'' comic book got in on the act: the outwardly dumb blond Hello Nurse was revealed to be the mundane version of Hello Nurse, Agent of H.U.B.B.A., a James Bond-style superheroine with a leotard styled to look like a nurse's uniform.
* MarvelComics does this often, but not as often as DC (they generally seem to prefer spandex bodysuits instead):
** Storm, generally.
** Rogue (though she usually wears it over another layer of tights).
** Psylocke, for almost '''seventeen years.''' To the point that ''any'' change to [[MsFanservice her costume]] is met by a cry of "TheyChangedItNowItSucks!"
** ScarletWitch
** Polaris (her classic outfit, usually worn over tights, as well)
** MsMarvel
** [[SheHulk She-Hulk]] (at times).
** SquirrelGirl (though she always wears it over another layer of tights)
** Valkyrie
** Colossus, according to WordOfGod from Dave Cockrum, Colossus's costume was designed with bare legs to better show off his superpower of having a metal body.
* ComicBook/{{Incandescence}} is proud to wear her leotard.
* [[Comicbook/SonicTheHedgehog Bunnie Rabbot]]
* Caitlin Fairchild of ''{{Gen13}}''. Probably the [[HugeSchoolgirl tallest example]] of this trope.
* In the [[{{Warhammer40000}} Warhammer 40,000]] comic ''Bloodquest'' has a male example, as [[TheCaptain Captain Leonatos]] is depicted as wearing a leotard over his HeroicBuild when he takes off his PowerArmor to rest. He also sits upright in bed, [[PillowPistol holding his bolter]] over his chest the whole time.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* Worn by Christopher Reeve as part of his ''Film/{{Superman}}'' costume in a rare male example. Granted, it isn't obvious to the naked eye (as he's mostly covered in identical shades of blue so the red in the middle looks like UnderwearOfPower to the naked eye), but there's at least one account that describes Reeve's costume as incorporating a leotard.
* Adam West's original Batman costume was also a leotard and tights, similarly disguised by a separate pair of briefs. This wasn't generally known until it appeared on eBay for charity, fetching over $30,000 (though the leotard was called a "tunic" in the eBay listing, it was shown separately).
** But Burt Ward's Robin costume was not based on a leotard, even though the comics version was. Ward's costume used a T-shirt and trunks instead (and flesh-colored tights, which Ward hated).
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* In ''Literature/{{Animorphs}}'', the morphers will normally tear their clothes if they morph into bigger animals, and the clothes will fall off if they morph into smaller ones. To prevent this, they wear skin tight clothes when morphing, such as bicycle shorts, tight undershirts, and for the girls of course, leotards.
* in ''Literature/TalesOfAnMazingGirl'' Mazing Girl Wears one- though its more of a skintight jumper that cuts off at her knee.
* The woman shown [[http://patricktreardon.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/robert_a__heinlein___the_menace_from_earth.jpg on one version of the cover]] of ''The Menace from Earth'' wears one.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* Leela in ''Series/DoctorWho''.
* In the Series/WeirdScience episode "Rock Hard Chett", Chett dons a leotard and tights after becoming invulnerable to just about anything. He vehemently resists the idea at first, until his brother points out that he should "think of it as a uniform".
** The audience is treated to several gratuitous full-body shots, and an instance of ClothingDamage that leaves the leotard bottom and mask intact but little else.

[[/folder]]

[[folder:Music Videos]]
* A common staple in LadyGaga's wardrobe, particularly earlier in her career. These ranged from relatively simple with shoulder pads to increasingly gaudy pieces that had mirrors, crystals, spikes, etc.
* "Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)" by Beyonce. 'Nuff said.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Pro Wrestling]]
* This used to be all over the place in ProfessionalWrestling, though you rarely see it nowadays unless someone is either an older wrestler or is going for that old school look.
** The legendary Memphis wrestler [[JerryLawler Jerry "The King" Lawler]] (now known as the priapistic screaming nut on RAW) mixed this with a MyNameIsInigoMontoya routine in which he would pull the shoulder strap down before destroying a particularly annoying opponent.
** A [[Administrivia/ThereIsNoSuchThingAsNotability Notable]] modern example would be KurtAngle.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Sports]]
* TruthInTelevision: gymnastics and figure skating.
** Though one hopes it's less fanservice-y considering most Olympic-level female gymnasts (and figure skaters, to an increasing degree) hit their prime at sixteen.
*** Which is A-OK in most of the world, ''including'' the better part of the US (except California and couple other states). It's still squicky, though, because actually female gymnasts are at their prime not at sixteen, but at ''twelve'', thirteen tops. By sixteen years they already start to lose their edge and finesse, compensating more by the brute force.
*** And occasionally by starvation.
*** Different in the case of rhythmic gymnastics, where athletes compete well into their twenties, and are often [[StatuesqueStunner tall]], [[ShesGotLegs leggy]] and curvy to boot.
**** But ever since 2000(?), rhythmic gymnastics leos tend to [[IncrediblyLamePun skirt the issue]]. Rhythmic gymnastics and "women's" figure skating tend to occupy the surprisingly obscure line between this trope and MinidressOfPower.
**** NCAA women's gymnastics. At least the competitors are around twenty years old, instead of eleven.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* {{exalted}} has this if the cover of [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ExaltedContemptibleCover.jpg Savant and Sorcerer]] is any indication.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Cammy White of ''StreetFighter'' is the poster girl for this trope in Fighting Games. The same series also features Rainbow Mika. Given they're each wearing a ''thong''-cut Leotard of Power, both have their asses on full display, too.
* In ''MortalKombat'', nearly every female character does this, most often Sindel, Kitana, Tanya and occasionally, Mileena and Jade (who both have other costumes with Underwear of Power instead).
* In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVI'', Celes and Terra's sprites seem to be wearing these. Celes' concept art has her wearing a completely different kind of suit, but it was changed for the game for [[MostGamersAreMale whatever reason]] and Terra's concept art extends it to a sort of evening dress (this may simply be a matter of a short dress being hard to show on a sprite).
** Terra's alternate look in ''VideoGame/DissidiaFinalFantasy'' which is based on her [=FFVI=] sprite shows it to be a really short dress.
* In ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyIV'', Rydia wears one both as a child and as an adult along with a numbers of very frilly trails and sleeves. Rydia however, is somewhat reasonable compared to Rosa, who tends to switch between this and a damn bikini between actual in-game and concept arts. She is also covered in scarves and in the DS CG, actually wears ''two'' capes.
* Of course this is a valid costume option in ''CityOfHeroes''.
* Mei-fang of ''VideoGame/ArcanaHeart'' wears one with the top part of a [[ChineseGirl Chinese dress]] jacket worn over it. "Top part", as in just the collar and sleeves, to better display her assets.
* Eclaire of ''LaPucelleTactics'' wears one when she's in her "dark" form. Priere as well.
* In ''{{Metroid}}'', players are able to play as a purple leotard-wearing Samus if they complete the game in under three hours. You can also play as Samus in the purple leotard without beating the game by entering certain passwords, the most famous of which is JUSTIN BAILEY. Subsequently, Samus's leotard is sometimes referred to by fans as the Justin Bailey outfit. The leotard is also seen in the second best ending for the game.
* Nina from the original ''VideoGame/{{Breath of Fire}}''.
** ''VideoGame/BreathOfFireII'' actually has an armor called, simply, "leotard".
* Fortune's outfit in ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid2'' is basically a one-piece swimsuit worn under a BadassLongcoat.
* The piece of armor known as the "Pink Leotard" is a staple of the ''VideoGame/DragonQuest'' series. Only female characters can wear it, and it's actually one of the most powerful pieces of armor you can buy in the game. (Fanart of various characters wearing it is popular in Japan.)
** ''VideoGame/DragonQuestIX'' has "Zenithian Leotard" (''VideoGame/DragonQuestIV'' heroine's costume). 52 defense, 10 point below Metal King Armor. It's green, and it's leaving your right shoulder naked.
* The Dark Queen from ''VideoGame/{{Battletoads}}''.
* After [[spoiler: her fall,]] Flonne from ''Franchise/{{Disgaea}}'' wears one.
* In the {{Baldurs Gate}} series, the Paladin class has this as the armorless model.
* [[ShamelessFanserviceGirl The playable Saber]] in ''VideoGame/FateExtra'' wears a [[http://smg.beta.photobucket.com/user/Sensui22/media/303d0226.jpg.html leotard]] under her partially see-through dress, but since the leotard is white and it isn't shown in full in the game many players initially assume that she's [[PantyShot showing off her underwear]] instead.
* [[CuteBruiser Claw users]] in the classic ''PhantasyStar'' series wear this. On the heroic side, there are a combat cyborg [[PhantasyStarIII Mieu]] and [[CuteMonsterGirl Cute Monster Girls]] [[PhantasyStarII Nei]] and [[PhantasyStarIV Rika.]] On the villain side, there are NM-2011 from the drama CD and Neifirst.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* Preferred by Athleta in the [[http://www.theduckwebcomics.com/The_KAMics/5108842/ Fashionably Heroic]] cartoons in ''{{The KAMics}}''.
* Awesome Lady from ''MyRoommateIsAnElf''.
* A bright red leotard with boots and [[OperaGloves gloves]] of the same color is the standard costume of superheroin Webcomic/{{Dasien}}. Commented upon in ''Webcomic/TheCrossoverlord'':
-->'''{{Mindmistress}}:''' Who's [your tailor]? Hugh Hefner? All you need is [[PlayboyBunny a cotton tail on your butt and some rabbit ears]].
** Also from the ''HeroesUnite'' universe, we have Bombshell.
* [[http://www.evil-comic.com/archive/20080503.html Lightning Lady]] from ''Webcomic/EvilInc'' fits into this. I meant fits into this ''category''.
* The [[http://www.webcomicsnation.com/eddurd/everydayheroes/series.php?view=single&ID=132973 Jane Gang]] from ''EverydayHeroes''.
* The minor villain, WaifFu practitioner, fae mercenary called "Odile" in ''{{Webcomic/Roommates}}'' has such an outfit. It also has {{expressive|Shirt}} little "feathers".
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Original]]
* At [[SuperheroSchool Whateley Academy]] in the ''WhateleyUniverse'':
** Kismet. Turns out, it's not too good in a cold classroom.
** And Mega-Girl, and Gloriana, and... Well, it's a popular look for teenaged girls who are built like Playboy Playmates.
* Favored by some members of the ''LeagueOfIntergalacticCosmicChampions''.
* Pretty much every other superheroine in the ''GlobalGuardiansPBEMUniverse'' wears a Leotard of Power. Every other superhero wears UnderwearOfPower instead.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Cheetara from ''{{Thundercats}}''.
** ...along with just about everyone else in the series.
* Raven from ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans''. This is a change from the comics version, who's a bit older. The animators changed her dress with long, narrow skirt to a leotard to avoid getting too ...revealing in action poses with a teen character.
** Also Pantha.
* Ace and Queen from ''JusticeLeague''.
* Princess Ariel from ''ThundarrTheBarbarian''.
* Many of the characters from ''WesternAnimation/SheRaPrincessOfPower'' (including She-Ra herself... as Princess Adora; as She-Ra, she only appears to be wearing a MinidressOfPower).
* Evil-Lyn, Teela, and the Sorceress all wear them in ''WesternAnimation/HeManAndTheMastersOfTheUniverse1983''.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Real Life]]
* Mr. [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jules_L%C3%A9otard Jules Léotard]] himself and his various trapeze-swinging colleagues, naturally. Lots of circus people wear them to accentuate the awesome.
[[/folder]]

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