[[quoteright:338:[[Manga/BuchoShimaKousaku http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Hardcore_Business_Manga.jpeg]]]]

Yubitsume, also referred to as "yubi o tobasu" (meaning "finger flying"), is a ritual from {{yakuza}} tradition that is performed when grovelling in apology just isn't enough. If a {{yakuza}} were to dishonor himself or his superiors, he is required to cut off the tip of his left pinky finger and offer it up as an apology to the offended party. And if a yakuza continues to screw up, it might not stop at one pinky tip, continuing in losing more joints and more fingers.

Yubitsume usually involves a specific ritual. The offending {{yakuza}} spreads out a clean cloth and lays his hand palm-down on it. With a short sharp knife (often a tanto), he then cuts off his pinky tip at the first knuckle. The knuckle is then wrapped in the cloth like a nice "package" and delivered to his superior.

The practice originates in feudal Japan, where conventional sword grips rely on use of the pinky finger for control; after yubitsume, the offender becomes weaker and more dependent on his superiors. These days however it is not as widely practiced anymore, and replaced with simply giving the offended party loads of cash.

Sometimes in fiction the exact ritual isn't followed, but the idea is the same: self-mutilation for the sake of honor or an apology.

A yubitsume scene is a must for any work prominently featuring {{yakuza}}.

See also: HonorBeforeReason, {{Seppuku}}, and {{Fingore}}. May invoke MajorInjuryUnderreaction.

This is the reason that FourFingeredHands are [[ValuesDissonance a rarity in Japan]].

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!!Examples:

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[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* The picture above is from ''BuchoShimaKousaku''.
* In the {{seinen}} manga ''WolfGuyWolfenCrest'', Haguro Dou, the son of a yakuza boss, punishes a mook who seriously failed him by taking away his finger in a horribly bloody {{Fingore}} scene; rather than using something sharp, Haguro uses a metal ring he is wearing, ''grinding the poor mook's finger against the floor until it comes off.''
* In ''{{Change 123}}'', a Yakuza attacks one of Motoko's three badass fathers with a folding knife, but the blade folds down onto his thumb. The father calmly tells a horrified boy not to worry, because these guys cut their own fingers all the time.
* In ''HigurashiNoNakuKoroNi'', instead of having to cut her finger off, Shion Sonozaki has to rip her own fingernails off, one for each of her sins, to earn repentance from her family, who are the Hinamizawa equivalent of the Yakuza. After that, her twin sister Mion was [[HeroicBSOD so shocked and depressed]] that she willingly ripped her own fingernails off.
** This is actually [[CorporalPunishment a standard punishment]] inside the Sonozaki family. Shion and Mion's mother Akane had to do the same after confronting Granny Oryuu on her love life (ironically, her future husband ''was'' also a Yakuza boss), and [[spoiler:Oryuu herself did it too for something we don't know of. ]]
* Referenced in ''{{Gokusen}}'' after the Family lawyer, a close friend of the [[MafiaPrincess Yakuza Princess]] heroine is shot by a member of an opposing group. Two of the Yakuza who are her friends/subordiantes comment that it wouldn't be enough for the rival group to make amends by sending her the shooter's pinkies and little toes; she'd demand his life.
* A Yakuza boss in the seinen manga ''Manga/{{Homunculus}}'' did this almost constantly. Most of his gang members were missing pinkies because he would remove them for insignificant reasons like interrupting a meeting. Turns out he has a FreudianExcuse from accidentally slicing his brother's finger off as a child. When the main character helps him realize his problem, the boss slices his own pinky off.
* A variant of this is s performed in ''RurouniKenshin'' by Houji as an apology to the other members of the Ten Swords for deceiving them Ina previous mission (which had actually been Shishio's strategy, but he told them it was Houji's idea). This is subverted as [[spoiler: It's actually a SecretTestOfCharacter by Shishio to gauge Houji's devotion to their cause.]] In the manga, the form is somewhat different as instead of cutting off a finger, Houji tears off all ten of his fingernails. It's played more straight in the anime, where one fingernail's removed and then Houji stabs the finger it came from.
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[[folder:Comic Books]]
* The titular character in ''Comicbook/{{Kabuki}}'' is made to do this after killing the BigBad against her bosses' orders.
** This being [[BadAss Kabuki]], she does it in a rather unique way: [[spoiler: she ''bites'' the tip of the finger off, chews ''and swallows'' the flesh, then spits out the cleaned bone. Then, since her bosses are staring at the piece of bone and completely distracted, she goes ahead and [[RoaringRampageOfRevenge kills them all]].]]
* An aversion in ''GreenArrow'' - the assassin Shado had all of her fingers intact, which Ollie's informant was a little surprised at hearing. He then warned Ollie it ''wasn't'' a good sign - Shado would have to be particularly {{Badass}} as to never ''need'' to make that sort of apology to her betters.
* In the last story-arc of the short-lived ''ComicBook/{{Manhunter}}'' series that stars Mark Shaw, Shaw's enemy Dumas has Shaw's friend Kazuo commit this ritual.
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[[folder:Film]]
* ''Film/BlackRain'': The ''villain'' performs it near the end.
* ''Film/IchiTheKiller'' (film) has an interesting variant. Kakihara cuts off the tip of his tongue instead of his finger. He's also doing it more because he's a masochist taken UpToEleven than because he really wants to atone for his mistake.
* In the film ''Film/JohnnyMnemonic'', the yakuza killer had his thumb replaced with reel of monofilament wire. It is implied by his immediate superior that he had cut off his thumb in the past due to dishonor and had since turned this disability into an asset (though that's not the case in the short story original.)
* ''Film/SympathyForLadyVengeance'': There are no {{yakuza}} in the film, but Geum-ja wants to get the point across that she's sorry...
* ''Film/TheYakuza'' has ''two'' yubitsume incidents. [[spoiler:Ken promised his brother he would ensure his nephew (a Yakuza goon) came to no harm, but after he's forced to kill him in self defense he tries to commit seppuku. His brother stops him, so Ken cuts off his finger instead. And in a surprise twist, the American protagonist Harry Kilmer is about to leave Japan when he suddenly returns to Ken's place and asks to speak to him formally. While Ken is fetching tea, he cuts off a finger and presents it to Ken, apologising for the pain he's brought to Ken's life (sleeping with his wife in the past and indirectly causing the death of Ken's daughter in the present). The act enables Ken to finally forgive Kilmer.]]
* ''Dirty Sanchez: The Movie''. In Japan, a character has the end of his little finger on his right hand cut off with a cigar cutter.
* The first ''Film/BattlesWithoutHonorAndHumanity'' movie has a yubitsume scene. Since the film is a ruthless subversion of Yakuza movies, they lose the finger. In the chicken coop.
* ''Film/{{Predators}}'' features a Yakuza enforcer, Hanzo, [[TheSilentBob who is voiceless]] for most of the film. At a certain point, Hanzo reveals he speaks English and is immediately asked why he hasn't talked more throughout the film. He shows two missing fingers on his left hand and replies "Because I speak too much."
* In ''Film/ShowdownInLittleTokyo'' one of the BigBad's subordinates does this because he fails to prevent the heroes from rescuing [[IHaveYouNowMyPretty the girl his boss had kidnapped and molested]]. Too pissed off, his master just drives his katana through the lackey's chest afterwards.
* Averted in ''Film/TheStreetfighter''. "Assassination or suicide, that's the penalty!"
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[[folder:Literature]]
* In one ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' novel it's mentioned that Harry King, who is [[SuspiciouslySpecificDenial definitely not a]] mob boss, has a missing pinky on one of his hands.
** Also, in ''Reaper Man'', Miss Renata Flitwick's father is identified by [[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Death ]]
as missing the tip of his left pinky finger. Understandable, given the former had been a smuggler in life.
* In William Gibson's ''{{Neuromancer}}'', when Case is trying to score drugs under the alias "Lupus", his [[DumbBlond ditzy companion]] asks if he's Yakuza:
-->'''Cath''': How come you got all your fingers, then? I thought you had to chop one off every time you screwed up.\\
'''"Lupus"''': I never screw up.
* Michael Slade's novel ''Kamikaze'' has multiple examples as a punishment for failing the kumicho (Godfather) of the local Yakuza.
* One ''Literature/JudgeDee'' story is about a rich old man who's fallen in love with a young street girl, and to prove his love, he goes as far as to have his finger cut off to join her gang. Unfortunately it goes downhill, which is why the judge is called in.
* In ''Literature/TheDevilsArithmetic'', the woman in charge of the prisoners at the concentration camp gets a finger shot off every time someone escapes or things get out of hand.
* Referenced as kind of a joke in the ''LayerCake'' novel. VillainWithGoodPublicity Eddie Ryder is telling the protagonist about his business dealings with Japanese businessmen. The VillainProtagonist, knowing Eddie is a LondonGangster, and that the business deal involves drugs assumes (likely correctly) the "businessmen" are {{Yakuza}}, angering Eddie. While the protagonist apologizes for the assumption, he makes a sarcastic reference in his narration about (paraphrased) "perfectly legitimate businessmen covered in [[TattooedCrook tattoos]] and missing their pinkies".
* Referenced when PhoenixForce go to Japan and find themselves up against the Yakuza. A Japanese detective says that the sight of missing fingers is so common among gangsters that he suspects their bosses set them up to fail just to test their willingness to chop a finger off.
* In Creator/CharlesDeLint's {{cyberpunk}} novel ''Svaha'', [[spoiler:{{yakuza}} attorney Fumiko Hirose]] does this shortly before [[spoiler:setting out to avenge the murder of her lover]].
* In ''LightNovel/KamikazeGirls'', Momoko's father is an incompetent low-ranking yakuza member who was supposed to get his finger cut off after a screw-up, but cried and begged so much that the boss let him off the hook. (Momoko has nothing but disdain for his cowardice.)
* Parodied in Janwillem van de Wetering's AmsterdamCop novel ''The Japanese Corpse'': the [[BadassGrandpa Comissaris]] is taken prisoner by a yakuza who tries to force him to do this. The Comissaris pretends to be clumsy and fumbles around with the knife until the yakuza leans over him to do it for him, at which point he [[ImpaledPalm spikes the guy's hand to the table with the knife]].
* Jay McInerney's second-but-really-first novel ''Ransom'', about an American teaching English in Japan, has a scene at a nightclub where one character discreetly points out the missing finger sections on the, uh, security.
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[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* Parodied in a ''SaturdayNightLive'' skit. Chris Farley went on a Japanese game show and saw two other contestants get a finger chopped off after missing a question.
* Referenced in one of the early episodes of the fifth season of ''BurnNotice''. Michael is trying to intimidate a wounded {{Yakuza}} member into revealing where the group has stashed a group of abducted women being smuggled into the US and [[SexSlave forced into prostitution]]. The Yakuza guy laughs in Mike's face, then holds up his hand, which is missing half of his ring finger, and explains that he did that to himself as a punishment for falling asleep on guard duty. He says that Michael can't scare him, and that there is no way he'll betray his own people. Sure enough, he proves to be a tough nut to crack.
* Sorta used in ''OneThousandWaysToDie''. A high-ranked Yakuza boss gets pissed with a karaoke singer and has the dude's finger cut off... [[TooDumbToLive and then swallows it whole]]. As he chokes, one of his mooks attempts the Heimlich maneuver... but does it incorrectly and kills his boss,
* An episode of ''TimeTrax'' has Darien square off again the Yakuza. He foils the plans of one Yakuza member, who then cuts off his own pinky to please his boss.
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[[folder:Music]]
* Referenced in LupeFiasco's song "Popular Demand"
-->"Young Yakuza, but none of my fingers cut,/So I can still sip Red Zinger with my pinkies up"
* In Hamell On Trial's song "Joe Brush", the title character is a great guitar player who cheats on his girlfriend, and as penance he cuts off his finger and mails it to her. He then moves away before she has a chance to get back to him "and now plays a mean slide guitar."
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[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* ''TabletopGame/{{Shadowrun}}''. This has been mentioned in products that deal with the Yakuza's activities in the Awakened World.
* In one of the ''BattleTech'' "Blood of Kerensky" novels, the oyabun of a yakuza organization loyal to the Coordinator (ruler) of the Draconis Combine on the planet Edo orders an underling to do this after he takes the 'initiative' to blow up a bar that the invading Clan Warriors frequent, kills far more civilians than invaders, and in the end, allows a Buddhist monk to take the blame and sacrifice himself in order to prevent further lives lost in retaliation.
** Happens at least twice more in the course of the Black Dragon trilogy written by Victor Milan, which takes place largely on Draconis Combine worlds. One instance is unusual in that its detriments to the pilot of a HumongousMecha are made clear (unable to grip the controls or work certain triggers), and that the ritual is later reversed by microsurgery.
* In ''TheDarkEye'', priests of the god of wars and slaughter, Kor, cut off their left pinky finger as part of their initiation into priesthood. This is the ninth and final deep ritual cut during this initiation, all because the number nine is this gods holy number.
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[[folder:Video Games]]
* A variant of this is done in ''HeavyRain''
* This is found repeatedly in the ''{{VideoGame/Yakuza}}'' series, naturally.
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[[folder:Webcomics]]
* Reiko's father in ''ContemplatingReiko'' is missing the tips of the last two fingers on one hand. His character page explicitly links this to his membership in a Yakuza gang.
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[[folder:Real Life]]
* As [[WorldWarTwo the War against the European Imperialist Aggressors]] ground to its bloody close, many fathers of [[ImperialJapan Japanese soldiers, sailors, and airmen]] in the [[SuicideAttack Tokubetsu Kogeki]][[note]]Literally 'Special Attack'[[/note]] units cut off the top bits of their pinky fingers and sent them to the Emperor in protest against the war. [[KatanasOfTheRisingSun The Army and Navy]] intercepted said packages, of course, and the Emperor neither heard of nor saw them.
* The Trip-hop artist and ex Yazuka member DJ Krush once found a yubitsume-severed pinky on his desk, belonging to his best friend. [[DefectorFromDecadence He soon left the group.]]
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