[[quoteright:188: [[Film/TheDarkKnight http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/JokerAndMasks.jpg]]]]
[-[[caption-width-right:188:Reason to fear [[MonsterClown clowns]] #287.]]-]

A group of people wearing masks is never a good sign. Maybe it's the anonymity, the obvious UncannyValley, or decades of horror movies ingraining a deep sense of distrust about someone wearing a mask outside of a MasqueradeBall (or even in one, if it's sufficiently creepy). It's because of this dehumanizing aspect that masks are often used by villains, their GasMaskMooks, and other FacelessGoons. Though some heroes do go about wearing masks, they tend to be {{Anti Hero}}es, or at least a little edgy.

!!This varies by mask:
* ''[[InTheHood Cowls and Hoods]]:'' Not exactly a mask, but used commonly enough to merit mention. A simple bag or cloth over the head, may be creepy (Scarecrow from Franchise/{{Batman}}, ''TheOrphanage'', Jason Voorhees' original ''Franchise/FridayThe13th'' appearance) or may be worn by an altogether nice SuperHero.
* A ''DominoMask'', one that covers only the eyes, is a traditionally heroic mask. [[ComicStrip/ThePhantom The Ghost Who Walks]] and ComicBook/TheSpirit being two classic examples. However, it may also be worn by [[BlatantBurglar comedy criminals]], such as [[CarlBarks the Beagle Boys]].
* Ski masks worn anywhere other than on the slopes in winter are often associated [[BlatantBurglar with criminals or terrorists]]. Masks that cover everything except the eyes are also associated with {{Ninja}}s, and can be either good or evil.
* If the mask covers the top half of the face, it emphasizes the mouth, aka [[EvilTastesGood gluttony]]: Never a good sign. Unless of course, it's to show a LanternJawOfJustice instead.
* If it covers a symmetric side of the face (left or right) then it's fairly neutral... except for the part where it is likely hiding a [[GoodScarsEvilScars decidedly nasty scar.]] See ''ThePhantomOfTheOpera'' (well, its adaptations). The same thing can be done with PeekABangs.
* Masks that cover the lower half of the face are likelier to be worn [[SilenceOfTheLambs by the cannibalistic]], or someone whose lower face is likely very damaged (as in, no jaw). They're also frequently worn by bandits in the Old West (possibly to keep out dust), as well as by {{ninja}}s who don't do full masks.

!!A full face mask is perhaps the most ominous of the lot, varying by type:
* ''[[WhiteMaskOfDoom Abstract Mask]]:'' Similar to the UncannyValley mask below, the abstract mask is a haunting, unidentifiable mess meant solely to frighten and distract the victim from their oncoming demise. See ''Franchise/{{Scream}}''.
* ''Animal Mask:'' The kind you would see in a kid's birthday party. When worn by an adult (or several of them) it brings to mind not animal cuteness, but savagery.
* ''Clown Mask:'' As pictured above, nothing says "evil" like a [[MonsterClown clown]], add in the faux cheerful mask and it gets ratcheted to another level.
* ''Mardi Gras/Venetian:'' Nothing says "you're going to die violently" quite like the festive and cheery masks worn in Mardi Gras or a Venetian carnival.
* ''Monster face:'' Usually used by the {{cult}} and members of the SecretCircleOfSecrets, in homage to their dark masters.
* ''Plain and featureless:'' A [[TheBlank blank, featureless]] (such as WhiteMaskOfDoom) mask emphasizes the anonymity it grants the wearer... which usually means they mean to do harm, don't want you to know who they are, and ''want you to freak out because they know you know this.''
* ''RageHelm:'' Designed to make ''a soldier or warrior'' look more fearsome. The soldier actually wearing the helm may or may not be as mean as the helmet makes him look.
* ''UncannyValley:'' Almost human masks are usually worn by criminals, be they kidnappers or {{Serial Killer}}s. It may be to establish a StepfordSmiler like connection to "personality as a mask". See ''The Strangers''.
* Last but not least... the ''NixonMask!'' Almost exclusively associated with bank robbers out to make a political statement. Expect a witty pun along the lines of "I am not a crook!"

See also FacelessGoons, GasMaskMooks and ScaryShinyGlasses. WhiteMaskOfDoom is a common subtrope. Compare CoolMask and CoatHatMask. When combined with the classic BlackCloak, it's the uniform of a SecretCircleOfSecrets. When the mask ''itself'' is malevolent, that's EvilMask.

----
!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* See also {{Henohenomoheji}}.
* The Mask of Ice and his underlings in ''Manga/PokemonSpecial''.
* ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'':
** Hollow masks
** A group of people [[spoiler: Vandenreich members, to be exact, invaded Yamamoto's office.]] They were so heavily [[TheBlank masked]] and clothed it was impossible to tell even gender. [[spoiler: They definitely weren't there to discuss tea ceremony lessons.]]
* Shirley's nightmare in ''Anime/CodeGeass'' has everyone wearing masks, laughing creepily. Also the mask worn by the AntiHero Zero.
* The intro of ''VisualNovel/HigurashiNoNakuKoroNi'' had Rika wearing a {{Kitsune}} mask.
* A few characters in ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'' wore masks, including Tobi and Kakuzu. Orochimaru sometimes pulled off the face he wore like it was just a second skin to reveal a different face behind it. Sometimes, the second skin [[FaceStealer actually was someone's skin]]...
** Recent chapters have revealed the probable reason for Tobi's mask. [[spoiler:He's not Madara like he claimed, just the person to inherit Madara's plan]].
** The Leaf's ANBU wear animal-themed masks that completely cover their faces. Mist ANBU and hunter-nin wear white masks with patterns resembling flowing water painted on them.
* ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' had the Angel Sachiel wearing something that looked a lot like a mask. Arguably, Lilith also qualifies.
** And [[RebuildOfEvangelion EVA-Mark.06]] as well.
* The Iron Mask Marauder from ''Anime/Pokemon4Ever''.
* Friend from ''TwentiethCenturyBoys'' has his signature eye-finger symbol mask, but earlier wore a cartoony monkey mask. ''And it made him no less awesome''.
* ''Anime/YuGiOh'''s Battle City arc has villains of the week Luna and Umbra.
** This was significant as it marked an "upgrade" of sorts from the first time they had appeared in the show. The masks (which where the half-faced variety, hiding their left and right side respectively,) [[AwesomeYetPractical also hid the microphones and earpieces they were using to communicate with one another.]]
* In ''Manga/RurouniKenshin'', one of Aoshi's {{Elite Mook}}s, code-named [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hannya hannya]], wears the eponymous mask as his mask (his unmasked face isn't that much more pleasant looking).
** Gein wears a black and white cloth with an abstract skull on it over his face.
* Char Aznable of ''Anime/MobileSuitGundam''. Probably the most famous masked villain in anime.
** As well as his various [[{{Expy}} "clones"]] - [[Anime/MobileSuitGundamWing Zechs Marquise]], [[Anime/MobileSuitGundamSeed Rau Le Creuset]], [[Anime/MobileSuitGundam00 Mr. Bushido]], etc...
*** Char inherited his mask from the character he was inspired by, Prince Sharkin of {{Raideen}}.
** Char and his clones tend to be {{Anti Villain}}s, though, with the mask mostly there because [[RuleOfCool it's cool]] rather than for creepy factor (though Rau is [[ManInWhite another]] [[BigBad matter]] [[OmnicidalManiac entirely]]).
* ''Anime/MagicalGirlLyricalNanohaAs'' has the villainous MysteriousProtector.
* ''MahouSenseiNegima'' has Kagetarou wearing an abstract mask. In addition, several of Fate's minions seem to wear masks.
* The [[EliteMooks Knights of Paris]] in ''Anime/{{Noir}}''.
* In ''{{Dorohedoro}}'' there's a ''whole city'' of them (Everyone get their mask as part of a contract with daemons). Most of them ''are'' [[AxCrazy malevolent]], or worse, but with the BlackAndGreyMorality of the setting you can never be really sure.
* [=CP9=] in ''Manga/OnePiece'' before TheReveal of their identities.
* Hei, from ''Anime/DarkerThanBlack'', wears an UncannyValley WhiteMaskOfDoom which looks like the child of V's mask and Jigsaw's. While we know him as an AntiHero, most of the rest of the cast would see him as [[HeroAntagonist at worst]] a terrorist and assassin and at best [[MookHorrorShow very]] [[TheCowl scary]].
* Darcia from ''WolfsRain'' has two. The first is a blank mask with a built-in EyepatchOfPower, but the second is a smiling WhiteMaskOfDoom with an eye hole to expose his [[spoiler:wolf's eye]].
* Masquerade from ''[[{{Bakugan}} Bakugan Battle Brawlers]]'' and his {{Expy}} Spectra from ''[[{{Bakugan}} Bakugan: New Vestroia]]''
* Boris from ''{{Beyblade}}''.
* Turkey from ''AxisPowersHetalia'' is a subversion, and more often than not PlayedForLaughs. Yes, he was VERY unpleasant in the past to ''many'' nations (young Greece, young Hungary, the Italies, Spain), but after having gone from the personification of the Ottoman Empire to the one of the Republic of Turkey, he's portrayed as a HotBlooded JerkWithAHeartOfGold who's actually rather fun to hang out with. [[TheRival Unless you're the now grown up Greece]].
** Go tell that to the FanDumb, though, considering how much RonTheDeathEater and DieForOurShip he's subjected to in a regular basis.
* ''Manga/HellstarRemina'': The black cloak and hood-wearing cultists who want to sacrifice Remina.
* ''NadiaTheSecretOfBlueWater'': Lord Gargoyle and Neo Atlan members wear these at all times. Besides slight resemblance to his voiceactor, Lord Gargoyle's face is completely unremarkable.
* Mixed with BandagedFace in a Manga/DetectiveConan case, where [[spoiler: a man who kept his HEAVILY scarred face under bandages commits suicide... and his SmugSnake brother in law uses it to fuel his EvilPlan.]]
** Also, the VillainProtagonist in Yusaku Kudo's books is the Night Baron, a high-class thief with a mask. More than once, someone has dressed up as the Night Baron. [[spoiler: And once, with ''fatal'' consequences.]]
* In ''Manga/{{Holyland}}'', Ryuu puts a mask on after his first fight with Yuu, for no obvious reason though.
* Several minor criminals in ''TigerAndBunny'' tend to wear one. In a more comedic version, [[spoiler: Karina, Antonio, Nathan and Keith]] pretend to be burglars to [[spoiler: surprise Barnaby for his birthday]]. The former three were wearing black ski masks while the latter was InTheHood with SunglassesAtNight.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* The titular Order of Beasts wear full face animal masks in the Franchise/{{Batman}} {{Elseworlds}} book ''Batman: The Order of Beasts''.
* The [[EliteMooks Men From N.O.W.H.E.R.E.]] in Creator/GrantMorrison's ''ComicBook/DoomPatrol'' wear abstract insectoid masks.
* V from ''ComicBook/VForVendetta'' wears a grinning Guy Fawkes mask. Self-identifies as a villain.
* In ''Comicbook/{{Watchmen}}'', Rorschach has the abstract/featureless version.
** As does Hooded Justice. Both he and Rorschach are very protective of their "real" identities; the Comedian also has a full-face mask, but seems to have adopted it to hide his facial disfigurement rather than to protect his face from view.
*** Also, like a Mardi Gras mask, the hedonistic overtones of a gimp mask promise ultraviolence. It also matches his belief that "the joke" is that people aren't better than animals and lets him shove that in people's faces by looking like a violent pervert in service of the government.
* Mazikeen the demon from ''Comicbook/TheSandman'' wears a half-mask to cover the left side of her face, which [[{{Squick}} is missing the skin, cheek, and part of the jaw.]]
* Both the protagonist and villain in a ''Film/TwentyEightDaysLater'' comic book use a riot mask and a hockey mask, respectively.
* ''ComicBook/TheMask'', natch. In RealLife, people wearing masks often report feeling uninhibited. In its original form, this work turns it UpToEleven with the ''complete'' suppression of the inhibitions of the wearer, essentially a possession by the Id. The titular Mask is also a MaskOfPower. The result is an ultraviolent AntiHero.
* In ''ComicBook/TheMovement'', Those who side with [[LaResistance the Movement]] wear [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rsz_3019351-movement-masks_5044.jpg abstract metallic masks]] that hide their entire face.
* The Global Peace Agency, of Jack Kirby's ''{{OMAC}}'', are a rare subversion: though they have one of the [[TheBlank creepiest varieties]] of mask, they're a peacekeeping group, as the name suggests (though [[GoodIsNotNice they can be a bit cold at times]]). In their case, their uniform and mask is so that the agent's identity and ethnicity cannot be determined, implying solidarity across the group's multinational membership.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* ''Franchise/StarWars'' has Darth Vader, Darth Maul, General Grievous, and the Stormtroopers. The Jawas aren't that evil, but they probably count.
** The [[StarWarsExpandedUniverse EU]] is also full of them, from the [[Comicbook/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic Mandalorian]] to [[ComicBook/{{Legacy}} Darth Krayt]].
* The ''Franchise/{{Scream}}'' series gives us the Ghostface killer, who can occasionally be a Malevolent Masked Woman.
* ''Film/BatmanBegins'': The Scarecrow wears a burlap sack sewn into the form of deranged scarecrow. He uses a gas which induces waking nightmares.
* SelfDemonstrating/TheJoker and his henchmen in the opening of ''Film/TheDarkKnight'' don clown masks to rob the bank.
* Bane in ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises'' has a breathing apparatus. Batman sure has a knack on fighting evil masked men.
** Which is only fair since, as was pointed out in ''Batman Begins'', they're actually copying Batman's tactics.
* The bank robbers in ''Film/KillingZoe'' all wear creepy, Venetian-style masks.
* In ''Film/{{Nightbreed}}'' (1990), the serial killer Dr. Decker wears a bondage/scarecrow mask.
* Hannibal Lecter first sported his iconic restraining muzzle in ''Film/TheSilenceOfTheLambs'' despite only appearing for a single scene in an already brief performance. It was bought back for both the sequel and prequel.
* ''Franchise/{{Dragnet}}'' (1987). The Evil High Priest wears a goat mask to hide the fact that he's actually [[spoiler:the Reverend Whirley]].
* Michael Myers in the ''Franchise/{{Halloween}}'' series, with his modified WilliamShatner mask.
* Subverted in ''Film/ThePrincessBride''.
-->[As the Man in Black is climbing up the cliff toward them]
-->'''Fezzik:''' [to Inigo] You be careful. People in masks cannot be trusted.
%%* ''The Strangers''
* Leatherface of ''Franchise/TheTexasChainsawMassacre'', who wears a variety of masks made of human skin to hide his deformed face
* The ''Franchise/FridayThe13th'' franchise has Jason and his hockey mask.
** Except in [[Film/FridayThe13th1980 the first]] where [[spoiler:it was not him]] and [[Film/FridayThe13thPart2 the second]] where he wore a burlap sack
* The attendants of the masked ball from ''Film/SweeneyToddTheDemonBarberOfFleetStreet'', where the [[RapeAsDrama "Poor Thing"]] scene takes place, wore animal masks. It's exactly as nightmarish as it sounds.
* In Film/KickAss, the men who are in the live internet broadcast of the torture video of Kick-Ass and Big Daddy are masked with balaclavas, with the exception of one man who wears a red supervillain mask. Katie Deauxma, originally excited to see a video of Kick-Ass's retirement, stops smiling as soon as a balaclava-clad man appears and introduces a kidnapped Kick-Ass to the viewers. In a draft script the "Baby Goon" brings supervillain masks, but the "Sporty Goon" rejects them and asks for balaclavas instead; however "Baby" gets to keep his supervillain mask.
* In ''Film/TheBlackHole'', the [[spoiler:formerly human]] crew members of the ''Cygnus'' wear smooth, featureless metal full face masks.
* Pavi's faces from ''Film/RepoTheGeneticOpera'' are a little of this and a little of UncannyValleyMakeup. They're skinned off women he particularly likes and held onto his face with metal clips, and underneath, he's horribly scarred, but they have an uncanny factor about them all on their own.
* Makkabeus and his cultists in {{Damnatus}}.
* The Jigsaw Killer of ''Film/{{Saw}}'' has a freaky UncannyValley mask along with a pig's head mask.
* Naturally, this is all over ''Film/TrickRTreat'', with [[CreepyChild Sam]] (in a scarecrow mask), the {{Undead Child}}ren (dressed as Halloween staples), and the masked vampire (in a Venetian mask) [[spoiler: who turns out to be a SerialKiller using fake fangs.]]
%%* The ''EyesWideShut'' sex sect.
* ''TheAndersonTapes'', as seen on [[http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/f/f3/The_Anderson_Tapes_film_poster.jpg the poster]].
* DavidLynch's ''Rabbits'' (also included in [[InlandEmpire INLAND EMPIRE]]) are people wearing rabbit costumes. Impressively, they never look [[{{Narm}} Narmful]], even when finally seen up close.
* In ''Film/MaximumOverdrive'', autonomous semis are the biggest threat to the Muggles, but the one sporting a grinning Green Goblin mask is especially chilling.
* In ''Film/{{Dagon}}'' there is a cult wearing human skin masks.
* Satoris' wrestler {{Mooks}} in ''Film/TheFinalSacrifice''.
* Subverted in ''TheNightmareBeforeChristmas''. The three shady trick-or-treaters, Lock, Shock and Barrel, wear masks all the time, but in their introductory scene they take them off, revealing faces that look exactly the same.
* Cited by J. Jonah Jamison as his rationalization for mistrusting Film/SpiderMan in the first Sam Raimi-directed movie. "Why's he wear a mask? What's he got to hide?"
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* Death Eaters in ''Literature/HarryPotter''.
* Scipio from ''The Thief Lord'' by Cornelia Funke wears a Venetian carnival mask.
* ''ThePhantomOfTheOpera''.
* In MichaelMoorcock's Hawkmoon saga, the evil and deranged people of [[TheEmpire Granbretan]] wear elaborate animal masks all the time, and would rather be seen naked than unmasked.
* The Watraii in ''Literature/StarTrekVulcansSoul''. They're introduced as a band of masked aggressors threatening Romulan colonies; their masks are noted as making them particularly sinister. This isn't why they wear them (the actual reason is more to do with their own feelings than installing fear in others), but their blatantly threatening manner and concealment of identity are clearly linked.
* Martin Lake, a character in Jeff [=VanderMeer=]'s Literature/{{Ambergris}} collection ''City of Saints and Madmen'', is invited to a very grim event and met there by three men. One wears a raven mask, one a heron, and the last an owl. Lake is [[WhyDidItHaveToBeSnakes afraid of birds]] to begin with. He's also dressed as a frog, who could be eaten by any one of them.
* The cultists in ''Literature/DiarioDeUnZombi'' wear formless wax masks. These actually serve a purpose as they confuse zombies and makes recognizing them as humans difficult for them.
* In the ''{{Belgariad}}'', the Grolim priesthood wears steel masks when they want to be intimidating, such as in combat or [[HumanSacrifice when attending their religious duties]]. They wear these in imitation of their god, whose mask covers his maimed face.
* Claquesous from Literature/LesMiserables. Most adaptations forget this, though.

[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''Series/DoctorWho'' has a group of [[ClockworkCreature clockwork robots]] who try to pose as eighteenth-century French humans by wearing [[WhiteMaskOfDoom creepy white masks]].
** "The Empty Child" had a boy wearing a gas mask who infected people -- who end up with faces like gas masks.
* Torchwood Miracle Day has a cult, all wearing white masks and marching in the streets. Since they were never even slightly relevant to the plot in any way at all ever, it's likely that this trope was invoked just to have an epic freaky cult marching in the streets for the trailers.
* The ''AreYouAfraidOfTheDark'' episode called "The Tale Of The Twisted Claw" had a group of older kids wearing masks of some kind and bullying these two trick-or-treaters.
** Also, "The Tale Of The Many Faces" was all about people wearing masks, and asked the question "Is it our masks (faces) that define who we are?" The villain in the episode stole girls faces and wore them to keep herself young. The girls faces she stole, were left with fish lips and white eyes, so they were given masks to cover up their ugliness.
* ''Series/ThePrisoner'' final episode ''Fall Out''. The rows of Village members wearing white/black masks as well as [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PEOYq-5NKrc#t=2m35s Number One wearing a white/black mask ''and'' a gorilla mask]]. And maybe, maybe not, a Number Six mask.
* The pilot episode of ''Series/GhostWriter'' had as its antagonists a group of backpack-snatching kids in goblins masks.
* The ''[[Series/TheTwilightZone Twilight Zone]]'' episode "The Masks," involved a dying old man wearing a death mask and forcing his [[InadequateInheritor greedy family]] to wear masks that reflected their personalities. Unfortunately, when the old man finally dies, the family members' [[BecomingTheCostume faces change to resemble their masks.]]
* In ''[[FlashForward2009 FlashForward]]'', {{mook}}s working for the show's big conspiracy wear clown masks.
* ''Series/{{Luther}}'' has Cameron Pell, who commits brutal murders while wearing a Punch mask, in order to create a striking and memorable image as well as hiding his identity.
* Sqweegel on ''Series/{{CSI}}''-not only a mask but a whole body suit.
** ''{{CSI NY}}'' had an episode with clown masks being used in a bank robbery. An explosion caused an outline of a mask to get seared into one guy's face.
* In ''ChinesePaladin'', the Lunar Sect Cult devotees wear full-face masks with a subtle animal motif to emphasize their brainwashed, dehumanized position.
* Iron Mask in ''Series/BIMASatriaGaruda'', one of the main villains.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Pro Wrestling]]
* Erick Rowan of Wrestling/TheWyattFamily wears a Sheep Mask.
* Wrestling/{{Kane}} debuted as a MalevolentMaskedMan, though he did briefly remove the mask.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* The Guardians of the Veil, of ''TabletopGame/MageTheAwakening'', are often viewed as at least creepy and people you shouldn't get involved with (if not viewed as outright malevolent), and much of their symbology revolves around masks such as these. In particular, the Interfector (read: executioner) wears a blank masks with only eyeslits, and bloodstained gloves, whenever appearing in the capacity of Interfector.
* In the ''[[BattleTech [=BattleTech=]]]'' universe, Clan warriors are issued full face animal masks reflecting their Clan's totem to wear for ceremonial purposes. Further, the mercenary known as The Bounty Hunter is also only ever seen masked
* The ''Fiend Folio'', another Monster Manual of the 3.5 edition of ''DungeonsAndDragons'', introduces the Ethergaunts, coldly rational and atheistic aberrations from the Ethereal Plane who are [[ColorCodedElements color-coded for your convenience]] and also sport featureless masks over their faces... which is fortunate since their faces [[BodyHorror are]] [[AlienGeometries truly]] [[BrownNote horrifying]].
* ''TabletopGame/MagicTheGathering'':
** While [[FleshGolem technically they aren't men]], the thrulls under the [[CorruptChurch Orzhov Syndicate]] have gold-colored masks so that their hideous faces are covered. [[UncannyValley Not that they aren't hard to look at with them]].
** [[SinisterMinister Elesh Norn]] and her fellow white phyrexians subvert this. They appear to wear wear white masks, but they are part of their faces and are TheBlank without them.
** Theros's zombies, the Returned, all wear gold masks to symbolise their LossOfIdentity. Phenax, the god of deception, sports a similar mask.
* Warhammer has examples of many different types:
** Balthasar Gelt, Supreme Patriarch of the Imperial Colleges of Magic, wears a greek-style gold facemask at all times. As a master of the Lore of Metal it's a reasonable enough affectation to adopt for him, but since he also wears thick robes, gloves and boots at all times, speculation is rife as to what exactly it is he's using the mask to conceal.
** Many Dark Elves wear daemon masks to present a horrific aspect to their fellows and enemies, especially the gladiatorial Sisters of Slaughter and some Doomfire Warlock horsemen.
** Elf scouts of all kinds - High Elf Shadow Warriors, Dark Elf Shades and Dark Riders and Wood Elf Waywatchers - tend to favour the lower-face cloth mask, occasionally tending towards full ninja-mask territory.
** The Orc Shaman Wurrzag ud ura Zahubu wears a very large wooden witch-doctor mask as a symbol of office (and because it shoots green fire out of the eyes!)
** The Mordheim Carnival of Chaos warband uses grotesque carnival masks to conceal its hideous mutations and get close to citizens of the Empire to spread its plagues for Father Nurgle.
** The Masque of Slaanesh, a daemonic dancer who has fallen from its patron's favour, carries a pair of reversible theatrical masks on a stick - one for Tragedy, one for Comedy - as part of its trappings.
** Many of the Tomb Kings of Khemri and their undead servants go to battle wearing the elaborate golden death masks they were buried with. As does the Slann relic-priest Venerable Lord Kroak. A few other lizardmen, such as the skink Tiqtaq'to, emulate this look with their own all-enclosing gold masks.
** Asuryan, king of the Elven gods, is usually depicted wearing a faceless mask divided laterally into white and black halves. This represents his role as keeper of balance and order.
* Warhammer 40,000 also has a few:
** The Blood Angel captain Erasmus Tycho wears a phantom of the opera-style part-mask to conceal the permanent rictus grin he is disfigured with. The Sanguinary Guard of the Blood Angels sometimes wear full sculpted death-masks to acknowledge the sacrifice of their primarch Sanguinius.
** Eldar Harlequins wear a variety of carnivalesque, abstract, horrifying, blank and uncanny masks to express their characters in the great masque that is their calling. Of particular note is the Shadowseer, playing Fate, whose mask is featureless, mirror-like, and reflects the destiny of whoever looks into it.
** The helmets of Eldar aspect warriors function as ritual masks, allowing an Eldar to don and cast aside his or her war-aspect and keep it separate from daily life.
** Necromunda's Redemptionists and House Cawdor all wear masks of one kind or another for religious reasons - a combination of promoting humility, intimidating rivals and not wanting to be identified. The Cawdors tend to favour simpler domino masks and strips of cloth, while the Redemptionists have far more elaborate venetian carnival style masks, grinning skulls and KKK-style pointed hoods.


[[/folder]]

[[folder: Video Games]]
* The Assassins from ''VideoGame/{{Dishonored}}'' wear masks. The masks are those of the Whalers, and are in no short supply in the city of Dunwall.
** Corvo's mask counts as one on a high chaos playthrough. But good or evil, the steampunk grim-reaper visage is so shocking that civilians will go into a terror-filled panic if they see you.
* The Splicers from ''Franchise/BioShock'' often wear Mardi Gras-ish masks. Possibly justified, as it's stated in Audio-Logs that everything really went to hell in Rapture on New Year's Day.
* ''Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda'' has a boss and some mooks which you must remove a mask from before you can hit them. Lots of different masks appear in ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaOcarinaOfTime'' in the Happy Mask Shop in Hyrule Castle Market. ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaMajorasMask'' game is all about masks. There are three masks that can change you into a Zora, Goron, and a Deku Shrub, as well as a whole inventory of masks that you collect and you can wear them, using some of the powers that the masks have. Also at the Carnival Of Time, all the townspeople wear masks as part of a tradition. Then there's the evil Majora's Mask that you must defeat.
* The Pigmasks in ''VideoGame/{{Mother 3}}.'' Their general is also specifically known as the Masked Man, but his isn't a pig mask.
* [[NoNameGiven Jacket]] of ''VideoGame/HotlineMiami'' wears a variety of creepy animal masks before each mission. These masks gives perks such as making unarmed punches lethal, walk faster, or start already equipped with a weapon. [[spoiler: Later on you find out there's an ''organization'' of the animal masked killers...]]
* Thanatos of ''VideoGame/SecretOfMana'' - for a 16-bit pixellated fellow he's shockingly eerie, too.
** His energy-sapped fanboys wear freaky full-faced masks too. [=NPCs=] comment on this, too, along the lines of: 'What's with all those masked weirdoes in the ruins?"
** Thanatos's mask is echoed by the one worn by Hakuoro of ''VisualNovel/{{Utawarerumono}}'', incidentally. It really is the exact same mask writ animated, complete with the quirky little mark at the top of it.
** [[spoiler:Considering Thanatos was in dire need of a new host, plus his true nature as a lich, it may very well be that he isn't wearing a mask at all...]]
* Each shadow in ''VideoGame/{{Persona 3}}'' wears a mask that [=IDs=] it with one of the [[TarotMotifs major Arcana]].
** The [[PowerRangers Power Ranger]]-esque ''[[ShowWithinAShow Phoenix Ranger Featherman R]]'' masks, first seen in ''VideoGame/{{Persona 2}}''. It is also in this game that they are significant to the plot.
** And, of course, the word ''persona'' itself literally means "mask." Aside from the Shadows, several character-specific Personas from throughout the series wear additional masks to hide their own inhuman facial features.
* The Testaments of ''VideoGame/{{Xenosaga}}'' wear concealing robes, hoods, gloves, and blank face masks; in fact, before each individual {{Reveal}}, they're simply referred to by the color of their mask and robes (Black Testament, Red Testament, etc) -- this being the only way to tell them apart, other than their voices. At first, not so much malevolent as really, really mysterious, but later in the series they're definitely antagonists. [[spoiler: Except for Albedo. He's a ReverseMole.]]
* More than one Sith Lord in ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic'' and its sequel. Darth Malak wears not exactly a mask, but a metal prosthetic plate thingy covering his lack of a jaw. Darth Revan wore an abstract/blank mask that emphasizes his mysterious anonymity. Darth Nihilus has a creepy, vaguely skull-like mask that gives him an inhuman look, which is befitting of Nihilus' nature, as he really ''isn't'' human anymore. He is, more or less, a living black hole in The Force whose life essence is bound to his mask.
* ''VideoGame/DeadRising'' has the Raincoat Cult. Aside from [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin the obvious]], they all go around in Green Goblin-esque masks.
* Relius Clover of ''VideoGame/BlazBlue''. A man who sought perfection in everything, a man who turned his family except his son to automatons without conscience, and [[ManOfWealthAndTaste a man who likes opera very much]].
* Several of the ''VideoGame/AssassinsCreedBrotherhood'' multiplayer characters wear masks, such as [[AnAxeToGrind the Executioner]], [[DeadlyDoctor the Doctor]] [[RuleOfThree and]] [[MonsterClown the Harlequin]].
* The protagonists in ''VideoGame/ArmyOfTwo'' [[http://guidesmedia.ign.com/guides/image/article/861/861645/armytwo_guide_1206398818.jpg both wear masks]] - ostensibly this is to offer head protection, but the designs (a snarling skull and a blank face with no features) are pure RuleOfCool. Incidentally, there are airsoft masks based on the left-hand, blank design and people can attest to the discomforting effect felt when faced with a featureless face and [[BlackEyesOfEvil no visible eyes]].
* ''Videogame/FalloutNewVegas'' [[CannibalClan The White Glove Society.]] wear masks that cover the lower part of their face. Their leader believes the masks give them a "mysterious allure" but all it does is make them creepier in the eyes of others.
* The bank robbers of ''VideoGame/PAYDAYTheHeist'' all wear creepy clown masks.
* The Masked Man, BigBad of ''VideoGame/RuneFactoryOceans'', well... wears a mask. [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin Obviously.]]
* Oscar from ''VideoGame/BrinkOfConsciousnessDorianGraySyndrome'' is a malevolent masked MagnificentBastard.
* From ''VideoGame/{{Syndicate}}'' (2012), apart from all the FacelessGoons, there's Agent Ramon, [[spoiler: the Twins]], and Miles yourself FromACertainPointOfView.
* The Masked Gentleman from ''VideoGame/ProfessorLaytonAndTheMiracleMask''. His sole intent is to destroy the city of Monte d'Or, using all the supernatural abilities the [[MaskOfPower Mask of Chaos]] gives him. [[spoiler:The mask is a fake, his abilities are fake, but the malevolence is real and a fake mask is still a mask, so he still counts.]]
* The Armada from ''VideoGame/{{Pirate101}}'' all wear white Venetian style mask. The higher ranked ones have black and gold trim except for Deacon, he wears a solid white Batu. Since they are all clockworks, there is nothing underneath but machinery.
* ''VideoGame/TheLastDoor'' has a yet-unidentified cabal of creepy people in yellow robes wearing expressive white masks that reveal themselves to the protagonist.
* ''[[VideoGame/GanbareGoemon The Legend of the Mystical Ninja]]'' has armies of {{mooks}} wearing ''kyōgen'' and ''otafuku'' masks.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* In ''Webcomic/{{Opplopolis}}'', while at a secret nightclub, Agnes [[http://www.opplopolis.com/issues/5/19 stumbles across a room]] where men in animal masks are playing a card game. A man in an upside-down cat mask suddenly appears and slams the door, on the outside of which is carved the word "marvedyne" (that word being the series' MacGuffin).
* ''Webcomic/{{Digger}}'' has "been seeing a lot of people with strange masks lately." One major group are are the Veiled, whose leader is a WellIntentionedExtremist, and the other group is the enormously creepy cold servants who serve the dead god.
* Hackers in ''Webcomic/TheFancyAdventuresOfJackCannon'' all wear masks that are red on one side, white on the other, with varying facial expressions.
* In ''Webcomic/{{Derelict}}'' [[http://derelictcomic.com/?strip_id=21 Cattle skull double up as hats and masks]].
* [[NoNameGiven That guy with the Pokeball-esque mask]] in ''{{Mokepon}}'' might be one, but as of yet [[AmbiguouslyEvil nothing is known about who he is or what he wants.]]
* In ''Webcomic/{{Magience}}'', the [[PlagueDoctor Plague Hunters]] wear {{BlackCloak}}s and beaked [[EverythingsBetterWithRainbows rainbow masks]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Original]]
* ''WebVideo/MarbleHornets'' has one in J's stalker. No, he's not [[TheSlenderManMythos Slender Man]].
* ''SurvivalOfTheFittest'' has Blood Boy, who wears a smiley face mask to hide his mutilated face.
* ''WebVideo/OneHundredYardStare'' has one mysterious masked man. His gas mask is rather intimidating. Season two adds some more.
* Lazarus of the ''Lazarus Mirage'' project[[note]] a Belgian multi-support project about fighting superstitions and common believes[[/note]] always wears a mask which is an abstract drawing of a schematic human face. Subverted, as the character isn't supposed to be malevolent at all, although he looks a bit creepy.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'':
** Koh the FaceStealer had a centipede body and was able to steal people's faces if they showed any type of emotion on their face when they were around him. If he stole their faces he would wear any of them at his choosing like they were merely masks. Several of these faces were based on traditional Noh masks.
** [[spoiler:Zuko]]'s Blue Spirit mask.
** Many of the Fire Nation soldiers, especially in the first season, have helmets that double as masks.
* The Equalists from ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'' are GasMaskMooks, and their leader Amon wears a WhiteMaskOfDoom.
* ''WesternAnimation/ScoobyDoo''. Every episode. Subverted, inverted, played straight, whatever you can think of.
* ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans'' has Slade and Red-X.
* [[http://kalistera.free.fr/kalistera/Boulot/Belphegor/Belphegor_thumb.jpg Belphegor]], from the series of the same name, wears a gold-coloured plain and featureless variety, combined with a hood and a black cloak, making his appearance somewhat similar to the Grim Reaper.
** His mooks all wear the cloth mask variety, with two eye holes but without mouth hole. Except his two most trusted underlings who surprisingly are unmasked and unnamed.

[[/folder]]

[[folder: Real Life]]
* The UsefulNotes/KuKluxKlan.
* Cuirassiers (armoured heavy cavalry) of the early 1600s wore helmets with [[http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/b/b8/Savoyardarmour.jpg intimidating faces]] to rattle their opponents and gain confidence.
* The band Music/{{Slipknot}} [[AlternativeCharacterInterpretation may or may not be malevolent]], but their masks are definitely menacing.
* Averted with Music/HollywoodUndead. Their masks are [[http://www.somethingawful.com/d/garbage-day/hollywood-undead.php not at all menacing]], and their {{Wangst}}y, {{Emo}}/PrettyFlyForAWhiteGuy songs are even less so.
* The men in the Nick Berg video and other beheading videos. The executioners wear balaclavas and kaffiyeh, so we do not know their real identities.
* The identical "X Face" masks worn by the band Mushroomhead.
* Australian industrial [[GrindCore death-grind]] band, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MXgFRT_1zw8 The Berserker]] fits this trope.
** However, they have recently begun playing without the masks. [[http://www.bloodstock.uk.com/cpg/albums/userpics/29604/The-Berzerker.jpg They're even uglier without them.]]
* The teacher in the video for TheBirthdayMassacre's song ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SREZ-ggSDjM Looking Glass]]'' was a [[MalevolentMaskedMen Malevolent Masked Man.]]
* They are [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anonymous_(group) Anonymous]]. They are legion. They do not forgive. They do not forget. They are coming...in the online equivalent of a Malevolent Mask, the know-how to mask one's presence online. Their logo (seen on the page linked above) and their name are definitely meant to be evocative of a group that wants to instill fear by pressing into their targets the impression that they know you don't know who they are. For now, they've shifted their style appropriately in RealLife to [[InternetCounterattack protest the actions of]] [[ChurchOfHappyology The Church of Scientology]]. They wear [[ComicBook/VForVendetta Guy Fawkes masks]] to protect themselves from lawsuits and the Church's goons ([[Website/SomethingAwful not that kind]]), and actually make a point of having a lot of fun in the process.
** They are also just about defunct.
** Project chanology mask wearers are only a tiny fraction of Anonymous' real bulk, most of which seem to treat the chanology protesters like a drunken cousin dragged around town, singing obnoxiously. 7chan in particular now bans anyone referring to the Chanology incidents and treats them like pariahs. This said 7chan has possibly one of the most toxic group dynamics known to mankind (assuming that heading even applies anymore)and it tends to crash more often than Polish Presidential flights.
* For centuries, nearly the entire population of Venice wore masks nine months of the year, like people of other nations wore hats. Only during the hottest summer months they left them home. During the Carnival they dug out the extra-special decorated masks so popular today. According to foreign visitors, they felt either themselves completely surrounded people of this trope, or being in a city of ghosts.
* GWAR's full-face monster masks, bristling with teeth and SpikesOfVillainy. Subverted by stage acts so over the top with menace that it wraps around to Campiness.
* Uncaught serial killers the Zodiac and the Phantom both wore creepy homemade masks during some of their attacks.
* The Visors on some [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crosby_Garrett_Helmet ceremonial]] [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ribchester_Helmet cavalry]] [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Newstead_Helmet helmets]] used by troopers in the Roman army certainly had an intimidating effect.
* Dance group The Jabbawockeez, wear full-face, white masks that also shadow their eyes, hats and hoodies, and dance with relatively dark lighting. Why? In their own words, they're meant to be 'A figment of your imagination' (as well as to avoid [[CollectiveIdentity any one dancer standing out above the rest in a performance]]). And with their choreography and occasionally ghostly performances, it really does [[RuleOfCool look pretty cool.]]
[[/folder]]

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