A form of Improvised Weapon
whereupon one fills their mouth with liquor, holds up a torch, candle, or if they're really ballsy, match, and spits the alcohol out into it, blasting out a stream of flame.
Possible in Real Life
, but only with very high proof alcohol (at least 100 proof, or 50% ABV). Anything lower will sputter a bit, if not put out the flame. Beer and wine aren't going to do it; you'll need to use something distilled. You'll need a good strong whiskey, some fierce vodka, 151-proof rum, absinthe, moonshine, or while not really what one would consider booze, PGA. That's right, pure grain alcohol — 100% ethanol. For things that aren't technically booze, there's methanol, industrial alcohol or wood spirit. Do not drink this stuff! (And for methanol and alcohol fuels based on it, don't even put it in your mouth for this stunt,
the tissues of the mouth absorb!) Do not breathe it in! Do not get it on your skin! It is nasty! There is also isopropyl, commonly called rubbing alcohol. It is expensive and definitely not for drinking, but it burns nicely. Obviously, this is a hazardous stunt best left to practiced performers
to Aerosol Flamethrower
. A more distant cousin, with more Toilet Humor
but only slightly less realistic, is the idea of harnessing a concentrated source of methane into a weapon of Fartillery
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Anime And Manga
- In the Eat-Man manga, Bolt Crank has the ability to swallow anything and later eject it through his hand. So once he swallowed some industrial alcohol ("200 Proof"), and...
- Bruce does this in the first episode of Mai-Otome 0~S.ifr~, pretending to be drunk and stumbling into the train car where the titular Sifr is being held, only to unleash this when they trick to kick him out.
- Renkotsu of the Shicinintai uses this trick in InuYasha.
- After the protagonist of Psycho-Pass sees alcohol being used this way (to trigger a sprinkler system; It Makes Sense in Context), she is briefly under the impression that this is alcohol's sole purpose (being both extremely na´ve and under the legal drinking age).
- This is how Horny the Clown is beaten in the Slasher Movie Drive Thru; the Final Girl spits out alcohol she had in her mouth when he shoves lit birthday candles near her face, causing him to catch on fire.
- This is how the Alpha Betas lost their fraternity house in Revenge of the Nerds. One guy playing around with a mouthful of Everclear & a match set the house ablaze, so the Alphas take over the freshman dorms, forcing the nerds out.
- The fire eater from the circus in The Warrior's Way does this, using it to light the candles on a birthday cake. It becomes a Chekhov's Skill when he later uses it to light a couple of the Colonel's henchmen on fire.
- In The Assassination Bureau, Oliver Reed sprinkles the cognac from his mouth on a cigar, lighting it up right into the face of an assassin who pointed a gun at him.
- Jolly Roger kills a man this way (using a Finger Snap Lighter for the needed flame) in Jolly Roger: Massacre at Cutter's Cove.
- Featured in the spectacular opening of Santa's Slay, when Santa sets a woman's hair on fire.
- In Pitch Black, one of the protagonists is caught in the dark with a guttering torch and a bottle of expensive spirits. He takes a big swig and blows a huge fireball, illuminating the hundreds of dark-loving beasties surrounding him just before the torch goes out and... crunch crunch crunch...
- In the live-action film version of How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, The Grinch does this to burn down the Whos' Christmas Tree after the Mayor pushes his Berserk Button.
- In The Rum Diary, this is done to display the potency of Moberg's moonshine. Kemp later does it to ward off angry Puerto Ricans he stiffed, only to end up setting fire to a cop's mustache.
- Gangster boss Rory Breaker does this in Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels. Take Barfly Jack's quote: "Rory gobs out a mouthful of booze covering fatty; he then flicks a flaming match into his bird's nest and the man's lit up like a leaky gas pipe."
- How Marion Ravenwood defends herself when Nazis invade her bar in Raiders of the Lost Ark.
- In The Scorpion King, Arpid does this to fend off army ants.
- In the Discworld book Feet of Clay, Nobby Nobbs does this by accident when a Spit Take after a glass of very, very, very strong brandy combines with a lit cigar. He seizes the opportunity to run as fast as he can, though.
- A human warrior once did this in Daughter of the Drow (Starlight and Shadows trilogy) — not for damage, but to disable an opponent with infravision.
Live Action TV
- One of Xena's signature moves.
- In the It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia episode "The Gang Solves the Gas Crisis," Mac and Charlie show off by doing this with mouthfuls of gasoline. They're not bright, those guys.
- Allen Haff does one for real in an episode of Auction Hunters; he uses some very strong moonshine to pull it off.
- In the MacGyver episode "The Eye of Osiris", Mac throws alcohol in the face of a man holding a torch, setting the man's hat and shirt on fire.
- Danger5. Soviet Hard-Drinking Party Girl Battle Babe Ilsa takes a swig from a bottle and squirts it in the face of a fire-breathing lizardman.
- Scottie in Mythbusters destroyed the balloons in the balloon girl myth this way.
- In Psych Gus's ex-wife did this as a bar trick.
- White Collar had an unusual example involving a bottle of whiskey chucked into a glass-blower's furnace.
- Cupcake Wars had an unintentional example; the chefs were given absinthe as a potential ingredient, and one decided to pour some in a heated pan. All she got was fire.
- Taiji Sawada did this for real in an infamous pseudo Performance Video for early X Japan (then called X), the "Orgasm at YASHIRO noodle shop" video.
- This is how Gene Simmons of Kiss does his famous fire-breathing stunt.
- The drunken master monk prestige class from Dungeons & Dragons can preform this feat with alcohol that they have already swallowed when they are drunk enough.
- In Dishonored members of the Bottle Street Gang fight this way using whiskey they distill in their brewery. In their areas you can also find bottles lying around in various nooks and crannies that, if thrown, explode. If it's the same stuff in the bottles as in their breath attack, then breathing it out as fire seems a lot safer than actually drinking it.
- Pandaren Brewmasters in Warcraft III have both a "throw booze" and "spit fire" abilities, which can be combined. Later, with the Mists of Pandaria expansion for World of Warcraft, Monks with the Brewmaster spec start having this ability. Extra damage is done to enemies already soaked in booze by the other Brewmaster attacks as it ignites them for Damage over Time.
- Auron does a variant for Tornado, one of his Overdrives in Final Fantasy X. What he does is create a huge whirlwind, then throws his whole bottle of sake into it, and the whole thing bursts into flame. Through friction, maybe?
- In Sanitarium the main character is taught how to do this by a carnival fire-eater, which is then used to fight a Puzzle Boss.
- In Mortal Kombat Deception, this is one of Bo' Rai Cho's fatalities.
- Maeda Toshie of Sengoku Basara has this as his Limit Break. He can also spit out fireballs or a giant inferno as well.
- In No More Heroes, Bad Girl uses this to set her baseball bat on fire when she Turns Red.
- Chin Gentsai of The King of Fighters also does this for his Limit Break.
- General Brigan, a massive berserker viking warrior of 'Odin Sphere" uses this as one of his attacks during his boss fights.
- Touhou has Suika Ibuki, who does this in the fighting games.
- It's not explicit in The Simpsons for the arcade, but this is probably how the drunken bartender breathes fire.
- This is one of the Kato's combat techniques in Monster Rancher 2; it was made unlearnable for player monsters in the translation.
- In the MMORPG Dragon Nest, there are enemies called 'Pirate Gnoll Bladesman's that do this as an ultimate attack.
- King of the Hill: Pictured above, Monsignor Martinez does this with communion wine. As pointed out in the page description, this should not be a strong enough alcohol to produce the effect, but oh well.
- Cotton does this with sake in one of his war stories. Sake should also not be strong enough, as its alcohol content is roughly the same as wine.
- In a Christmas Episode of Family Guy, an enraged Lois does this to Frosty the Snowman.
- This happens in Rango even though there is no liquor (cactus juice) and no flame (though he did swallow a lit cigar beforehand).
- Pickles from The Oblongs did this, only she just used a lighter and her alcohol-soaked breath. She tells Bob that she's good for welding, but she's too drunk to drive.
- In a typical shoot-out with the Russian KGB in Archer, Lana and Archer only have blanks in their guns so have to make these.
- Still a popular performance art today, with carnival fire-eaters, or fire dancers like Patika Starr.
- Performers are more likely to use kerosene or lamp oil, though, for two reasons: one, because alcohol burns with a pale blue flame that's almost invisible in daylight, and two, because you don't have to swallow alcohol to absorb it into your system - it will be absorbed through the tongue, cheek, and gums. One Booze Flamethrower isn't enough to put you over the drunk-driving limit, but repeated performances will make you intoxicated.
- A slightly disturbing part of this is that, no matter how good a fire-breather or fire-eater you are, you will end up swallowing some of the flammable liquid, particularly if you tip your head back, which is actually required for some of the most impressive displays like "Dragon's Breath". As a consequence, people who regularly perform fire-breathing and fire-eating routines often suffer health problems, and have to take time off from fire-breathing to let their digestive and respiratory systems recover from the damage done. Performers try to have at least one other performance skill - for instance juggling - so that they can continue to earn during these biologically-enforced fallow periods.
- Always use ethanol (or the aforementioned kerosene or lamp oil) instead of methanol if you're going to try fire breathing. Despite having similar taste and short term effects to ethanol (drinking alcohol) methanol poisoning has caused a lot of people to either go blind or die. If you use methanol in this stunt and it's in your mouth at any point, you are Too Dumb to Live.
- Some enterprising militias and paramilitaries use booze as flamethrower fuel, because they can get it more readily than petrochemicals.
- Not really such a hot idea in real life, because traditional fuels like gasoline are not only significantly cheaper than the concentrated alcohols that could work with a flamethrower, but it also burns better.
- Attempted by a guy who wanted to show off at an SCA event. Of course, he'd never done this trick before, and was underage to get alcohol so used Coleman stove fuel instead, which is why that link leads you to the Darwin Awards site. (He survived.)