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Couldn't Find a Lighter
Cool, but Inefficient ways of lighting cigarettes, cigars, etc. Mundane Utility may be involved, especially with flamethrowers.

With so many very hot things inches away from people's faces, expect liberal use of Convection Schmonvection.

Inversion of Hard To Light Fire. Finger Snap Lighter is a specific Sub-Trope for the pyrokinetic gentleman. Cigar Fuse Lighting may be seen as an inversion.


Examples:

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    Advertising 

    Anime and Manga 
  • Cowboy Bebop: After a running fight with an alien... something.., during which he armed himself to the teeth, Spike uses the flamethrower he'd grabbed to try lighting his post-battle cigarette. The look on his face when he burns it off almost to his lips is tragicomically priceless.
  • In Trigun, at a shooting competition, one contestant can be seen lighting his cigarette with a submachine gun.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist: Havoc asks Mustang to use his fire alchemy to light his cigarette.
  • In Super Dimension Fortress Macross a soldier once lit a Zentraedi's giant cigarette with a Valkyrie's gunpod.
  • In The Castle of Cagliostro, royal guard Gustav demonstrates the castle's laser defense system by holding out a cigarette to be zapped, then placing it in Zenigata's mouth.

    Comicbooks 
  • In Doc Savage #5 (the DC Comics 1980s version), a crazed military officer lights his cigar off the pilot light of a flamethrower before torching the building Doc and his aides are in.
  • Hellboy's Liz Sherman uses her pyrokineses to light her cigarettes on occasion.
  • In Teen Titans, Ravager sticks the business end of her cigarette into Kid Devil's mouth to light it up.
  • In one Wolverine comic Logan sets a soldier on fire, then grabs him and uses him to light a cigar.
  • In one issue of Manhunter, Kate Spencer is desperate for a cigarette and, unable to find a lighter, resorts to lighting the cigarette from the gas stove.

    Film - Animated 
  • In Disney's Mulan, during the battle with the Huns, Mulan is trying to light the last firework but her she drops her flint. She eventually resorts to using Mushu's dragon breath to light it at the last second.

    Film - Live Action 
  • Shoulder Arms: Charlie Chaplin, in the trenches of WWI, holds the cigarette over the trench and gets a light from a helpful enemy sniper.
  • In Heathers, Veronica lights her cigarette off of the explosion that just killed her ex-boyfriend J.D. Also, when Veronica burns the palm of her hand with a car's cigarette lighter (intentionally), and JD lights a cigarette from the burn-scar's residual heat.
  • In Watchmen, the Comedian does the "light the cigar with the flame-thrower" trick.
    • Although, unlike the poster, he 'only' uses the pilot light.
  • In Oliver Stone's Platoon, one of the characters lights his cigarette from a villager's burning hut that the American soldiers have just torched.
  • In Blazing Saddles, Mongo lights a cigar by sticking it into a fire, while it's in his mouth. Bad Ass indeed.
  • In The Manhattan Project, John Lithgow lights a cigar with a laser that is strong enough to cut through steel and concrete.
  • In the Danger Room Cold Open of X-Men: The Last Stand, Wolverine uses holographic burning rubble left by an attacking Sentinel to light his cigar. Yes, Wolverine is so Bad Ass he can light a cigar off flames that don't actually exist.
  • In Hellboy, Hellboy's first fight with Samael leaves his arm on fire. He lights a cigar with it before putting the fire out.
  • Boondock Saints: one of the brothers lights a cigarette using the flame from his gas stove in the first film. This is Truth in Television; see below.
  • In Miller's Crossing, Leo re-lights his cigar off a smoking tommygun after killing the would-be assassins who brought it.
  • Comrade Sukhov in White Sun of the Desert lights his cigarette off a dynamite fuse.
  • In the Buster Keaton short Cops, a distracted Buster absent-mindedly lights his cigarette off the lit fuse of a bomb.
  • El Mariachi: used for a Rule of Three gag — the Big Bad twice lights his match off the stubble on his mook's face, the third time the mook lights his own match off his bosses stubble after he's killed.
  • After the big climactic chase is over in Maniac Cop 3 Badge Of Silence, McKinney uses Cordell's severed burning arm to lit his cigar.
  • In Every Home Should Have One, Marty Feldman lights a cigarette off the exhaled flame of a fire-eater at a party.
  • Harpo uses a blowtorch to light a cigar in Duck Soup. In a somewhat related gag, he pulls a candle literally burning at both ends from his coat in Horse Feathers.
  • In Eastern Condors, before making his Last Stand, Ciggy lights his final cigarette by pressing it against the hot barrel of a .50 cal machine gun.

    Literature 
  • Discworld
    • In Going Postal, Adora Bell Dearheart lights a cigarette on a burning letter that flutters past when the post office catches fire.
    • In another novel, Captain Vimes tickles a swamp dragon and, when it breathes fire, uses the fire to light a cigar. His wife is less than pleased with his mundane uses of her beloved dragons.
  • The first time Dr Watson meets Sherlock Holmes in A Study in Scarlet, Holmes is using a hot coal from the fireplace to light his pipe.
  • Similar to the Watchmen example, flame-trooper Brostin of Gaunts Ghosts has been known to light his lho sticks (space cigarettes) with the pilot light of his flamer, or off of whatever it is he's just lit on fire. It probably has to do with his pyromaniac tendencies, since he just as often does have a lighter.
  • In When the Devil Dances, Mike O'Neal's custom ACS has a flamethrower installed. When the non-ACS Colonel Cutprice sees it demonstrated, he asks to give it a try. In this case, it means Mike using the 'thrower with it held up for the flame to make a torch, and Cutprice leaning into to light a cigarette without any ill effects from being so close to the flame.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In the Criminal Minds episode "Natural Born Killer," when the BAU team is theorizing about how a gruesome torture-murder went down, they imagine the killer using a blowtorch to light a cigarette before using it on the victim.
  • In the Dads Army episode "The Armoured Might of Lance Corporal Jones", Joe Walker lights his cigarette from a flame sprouting from a leaking gaspipe without realising it.
  • Angel: used for an Establishing Character Moment for the demon Sahjahn, who is first seen conducting the usual overblown Magical Incantation — when nothing happens he casually lights a cigarette from one of his flaming braziers and then checks his wristwatch to make sure he's got the time right.
  • The X-Files: in "Je Souhaite", a man who Came Back Wrong blows himself up when he tries using the lighting from a stove method to try warming himself up — as his body is still dead he keeps fumbling the matches and can't smell the gas.
  • A sketch on The Sketch Show depicts a group of cavemen inventing fire. Once the fire is going, one of them immediately uses it to light a cigarette.
  • Midsomer Murders: In "Ghosts of Christmas Past", Jerkass Digby lights a cigar from one the candles on the dinner table as a taunt at one of the other guests who is not allowed to smoke.
  • In Absolutely Fabulous, Saffron mentions that Edina has only ever used their kitchen's stove to light cigarettes. Edina starts to protest, but realizes this is true.
  • On Whose Line Is It Anyway?, one suggestion in the crowd favorite "Scenes from a Hat" was "Times when you shouldn't smoke."
    Colin: (halfheartedly) "Fire!" (lights his cig on the impending blaze)
  • On Deadliest Catch, be wary if Edgar Hansen offers to light the candles on your birthday cake. His methods tend to be a bit overkill (i.e. a flamethrowing torch).
  • Copper: In "In the Hands of an Angry God", Molly lights Kevin's cigarette from a candle (although this would not have been uncommon in 1864).

    Tabletop Games 
  • One of the Shadowrun supplements featured a fake ad showing a troll lighting his cigar off the muzzle flash of his BFG.

    Videogames 
  • In Space Station 13, you can light cigarettes with a lighter, or a welding tool. Also, explosions. Lighting it with a welding tool makes the game call you a badass.
  • Team Fortress 2 has the achievement "Need A Light?", where you have to have a Pyro set a Spy on fire when he's using his Disguise Kit taunt, which involves him taking out a new cigarette.
  • In Saints Row, after killing Victor Rodriguez, Troy lights his cigar off of Victor's burning remains. Dex is disgusted at this.
  • A Brick Joke in Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker revolves around this - in the introduction, Snake is having trouble getting his lighter to work, and a man with a job offer for him lets him use a lighter built into the thumb of his prosthetic hand. Much later, when the man dies after launching said prosthetic at Snake in a Desperation Attack, Snake takes it to replace the aforementioned lighter.
  • During the opening cutscene of the Spider Lair DLC of Metro: Last Light, one of your fellow treasure-seekers lights his cigarette off an absolutely massive flamethrower's pilot light, after offering said light to his friend first.

    Western Animation 
  • The Looney Tunes short "Bacall to Arms" features a parody of To Have And Have Not, in which Humphrey Bogart lights Lauren Bacall's cigarette with a welding torch.
  • At the end of the Droopy cartoon "One Droopy Night", Droopy keeps the dragon he defeated to light his cigars.
  • In the Classic Disney Short "Brave Little Tailor", a giant rolls up a haystack into a cigarette and uses a potbellied stove as a lighter.
  • The Simpsons did it in an episode with multiple rockstars making guest appearances. For a benefit concert, they have a motorized Devil-head on wheels, complete with pyrotechnics, which Keith Richards lights his cigarette on by putting it in his mouth and sticking his head into the stream of flame.
  • Popeye used a hot plate to light his pipe once.
  • Family Guy:
    • In an early episode, Peter and Lois end up temporarily trapped in Cuba. Peter takes to it quickly by getting a Cuban Havanna, but failing to find a lighter he lights it off a burning American flag that a helpful local was carrying past.
    • Also when Peter and Lois went to a KISS concert; a man in there had a cigarette and asked if somebody had a fire. All the Gene Simmons (including Peter) lit his cigarette with fire from their mouths.
  • In King of the Hill, Dale lit a cigarette on the Olympic torch. This later becomes a Chekhov's Gun when Hank accidentally drops the torch; Dale's cigarette is still lit, so Bobby takes it and relights the torch with it.
  • In Melody Time, Pecos Bill uses a lightning bolt to light a cigarette. (This scene has been cut out of some versions.)
  • In the Betty Boop cartoon I Heard, a ghost lights a cigar off the lit fuse of a Cartoon Bomb.
  • The Venture Bros. episode "Self-Medication", had Action Johnny getting his cigarette lighted by one of Ro-boy's Rocket Boots.
  • Futurama: The first time crew encounter the sewer mutants, Fry quickly lights a makeshift torch and starts swinging it around threateningly. One of the sewer mutants casually lights a cigarette from the torch.

    Real Life 
  • Ted Taylor, a nuclear physicist, used the reflected thermal pulse of a nuclear blast to light a cigarette at one of the atomic bomb tests.
  • Happens frequently at fire-dancer gatherings, usually with a cigarette held in the mouth.
    • While few of them will admit it, this trick is so widespread because secretly, most of them aren't quite insane enough to carry a lighter in their pocket while spinning.
  • It at least used to be a common occurrence among welders... at least according to one former welder, anyway.
    • Only TIG welders, since you use a torch for it. Which with no experience can more likely ruin the cigarette then make a clean light.
    • You can light a cigarette using (usually red-hot) tip of ordinary electrode right after welding - no TIG required.
    • Similarly, you can light it off the heat remaining in the workpiece.
    • You can, of course, do it with the flame of an oxyacetylene torch as well. (Though the other way round - lighting the torch off a cigarette - does not work no matter what you do.)
  • If you have a gas stove with an electric starter, you can use it to light a cigar or cigarette—indeed, many people have. It isn't the safest thing in the world, but hey, desperate times call for desperate measures...(we guess).
    • You could do this with a gas stove without an electric starter if you have one of those nifty flameless ignition tools, although this is more dangerous (as they generally require more concentration to operate than a built-in electric starter). And of course, you could theoretically do it using a gas stove without either of those things...but in that case, why not just use the matches or lighter you used to light the stove to light your cigarette?
      • Because the lighter tends not to be a flame, but a spark (they tend run out of juice to quickly if you keep them turned to the full setting).
    • Of course, the most suitable gas stove for the job is one with pilot lights.
    • It is possible, although neither pleasant nor advised, to light a cigarette on the hot wires inside a toaster.
      • An electric stove works on the same principles as a car lighter — enough heat conducts through the metal for the metal to radiate it.
  • Witnessed, a worker in a glass-blowing factory igniting his cigarette on the piece of molten glass he had on a pole. Which you might think would contaminate the glass.
  • Lighting a cigarette off a lit blowtorch is not only possible but a lot easier than it would seem.
  • It'll get you thrown out if you try it during chemistry class, but lighting smokes from a Bunsen burner is pretty easy.
  • This guy, lighting a cig from a lit Molotov cocktail just before he throws it, in the January 2014 protests in Kiev.


Cigar Fuse LightingImprovised IndexCouldn't Find a Pen
Cigar Fuse LightingThe Smoking SectionDistinguished Gentleman's Pipe
Cold FlamesThis Index Is On FireCut the Fuse
City NoirImageSource/Live-Action FilmsHidden Villain
Cool PetTelevision Is Trying to Kill UsDefiled Forever

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