Earthy Barefoot Character
Characters who walk barefoot are often shown to be close to nature, animals and their surroundings. These characters are sometimes depicted as a Wild Child
or Nature Hero
living in jungles, forests or in the wild. They tend to be deeply connected to animals (and may even have the ability to talk to them) and plants in general. At the very least, they are the Nature Lover
As for personality, they are usually carefree, down to earth, stubborn or energetic. If they have powers, they'll usually get Dishing Out Dirt
or Green Thumb
. They may also posses some mystical abilities like controlling animals, changing the weather and such.
Bare feet are probably used for this as you can feel the ground beneath you (therefore you'll be "connected" to the earth) and you wouldn't really get that feeling from shoes or socks, so generally, a character exhibiting this trope does not like shoes
If played realistically
, such a character might have particularly calloused and dirty feet, but Beauty Is Never Tarnished
often rules this out, especially when it's used for the sake of Author Appeal
Related to Fertile Feet
. Subtrope of Does Not Like Shoes
. Compare and contrast with Barefoot Poverty
- Batman villainess Poison Ivy is sometimes a barefooter, Depending on the Artist and the adaptation.
- Subverted with Jack Hawksmoor in Stormwatch and The Authority. He needs to go barefoot because his powers depend on contact with his environment, but his powers come from urban environments rather than nature.
Film- Live Action
- Tangled: Rapunzel. Makes sense considering her down-to-earth attitude, her way with animals, and her healing powers.
- Disney's Melody Time, "The Legend of Johnny Appleseed" segment. When we first see Johnny he's dressed in normal clothes, including shoes. After starting on his mission to plant apple trees throughout the U.S. his shoes wear out and he's barefoot from then on.
- Sleeping Beauty: Briar Rose, who is barefoot and a Friend to All Living Things.
- Pocahontas is yet another Disney example.
- In Avatar, once Jake gets his avatar body he runs out into a field and sinks his toes into the earth, symbolic of his coming connection to Pandora. Crosses over with Limb-Sensation Fascination, as his human body was paraplegic and he hadn't been able to run in years.
- Flute, the Mysterious Waif in The Elenium, is known for eschewing footwear always having grass-stains on her feet, even if there is no grass anywhere around.
- Hobbits in The Lord of the Rings don't wear shoes, as part of their Closer to Earth rustic character. They have tough, hairy feet to make up for it.
- In Zilpha Keatley Snyder's The Changeling, Ivy Carson is definitely this.
- Caine from Kung Fu is usually barefoot and is very close to nature.
- Cody Lundeen from Dual Survival, who hasn't worn shoes for decades because he feels being barefoot brings him closer to nature. However, he's willing to don footwear in situations that warrant it, such as thermal socks when traversing snowfields, or improvised sandals when walking over sharp rocks.
- In Dungeons & Dragons earth genasi are nearly always depicted barefoot (which may signify their connection to the element, or just result from the fact that they tend towards thick skin and unusual foot size)
- Enforced for fist of the forest prestige class - they grow claws when tapping into their primal powers, which rips through any boots they might be wearing.
- Warhammer wizards who draw on Ghyran, the green wind of magic, are connected to water and through it to plant life. As such, they usually go barefoot. That spells they use that do not involve Making a Splash or their Green Thumb involve Dishing Out Dirt.
- The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess: This is Ilia in a nutshell. Not only is she introduced feet first, she's the only villager, besides Talo, to not wear shoes. According to the supplemental material, she spends much of her time at the spring, just outside the village, where she bathes Epona. Or occasionally pitching in at the ranch. Bonus points for essentially being an expy of both Saria and Malon, who were friends with nature as well.
- Elika from Prince of Persia (2008) is a perpetual barefooter, able to restore corrupted ruins into gardens brimming with life.
- Nuri from Chains Of Satinav is kind to everyone, always barefooted, and treats all animals as though they were sapient. Given how this is in the grim setting of The Dark Eye, her general nice-ness stands out all the more.
- Milla Basset from the upcoming game Freedom Planet is the the only (known) cast member to be a Barefoot Cartoon Animal; her description in this art of her notes "she has a strong connection to the earth" alongside her distaste for shoes, implying this trope is why. Considering this is from a cast full of Fully Dressed Cartoon Animals, this would also make her an inversion of The One Who Wears Shoes.
- Dragon Age II - Merrill and Fenris, the elf party members. Merrill is from one of the Forest Ranger-style Dalish clans, while Fenris presumably just Does Not Like Shoes. As most of the game is spent in a grimy city, they'll occasionally complain about stepping in something unpleasant.
- Gunnerkrigg Court:
- Antimony, while less pronounced than most other characters on this page, prefers to go barefoot when alone and remove shoes while at rest outside. Which realistically affects her soles. It is a matter of choice, since she's still barefoot even after learning how to make perfectly fitting boots.
- Annie ran barefoot in the Court when she "could imagine she was at home". Later on one of trips to Gillitie Wood she kicks off her shoes as soon as she steps off the bridge. This emphasises her connection with the forest (partially because the creatures hate signs of the Court) and, along with her casual clothing, how she feels at home there now; she didn't take her shoes off on earlier visits.
- Toph from Avatar: The Last Airbender goes barefoot all the time, even destroying the soles of shoes so she can still feel the earth easily. The reason she isn't wearing shoes isn't some symbolic connection between her and the earth, it's the literal connection between her feet and the ground. Toph is blind, and can "see" by sensing the vibrations in earth, so she needs to be barefoot for this to work. Other earthbenders who can see don't need to take their shoes off. Of course, that doesn't stop most of them from going barefoot anyway. Earthbending might be possible in shoes, but is most likely much easier barefoot.
- Tupu, from the French/Canadian cartoon of the same name. Due to having been raised in the wild, she almost never wears any kind of footwear.