"At male strip shows, it is still the women that we watch, the audience of women and their eager faces. They are more obscene than if they were dancing naked themselves."
— Jean Baudrillard
There's just something completely gorgeous about that other character. The protagonist just can't help but stare and drool over his gleaming smile, his sapphire eyes, or any other attractive features. Even if the protagonist's a Tsundere
who loudly declares that she Does Not Like Men
, expect the protagonist to be unable to stop themselves from noticing how well-built that character over there is, and how compelling his eyes are... Sometimes the protagonist's inner monologue will devolve into Purple Prose
This trope is usually identified with Love at First Sight
. Some cases may result in Distracted by the Sexy
, eventually leading to Longing Looks
once romance enters the picture.
and Female Gaze
are related, but distinct, as they are concerned with how a work is presented to the audience (i.e., presuming the viewer will come from a male or female perspective, respectively). Eating The Eye Candy refers to a character's
interest (which can, however, carry over into framing and presentation). Gender-flipped examples exist for both tropes. Subjected to Double Standard
since Female Gaze
doesn't carry the implications of Male Gaze
: a woman who looks at a man sexually is more often than not written as 'cute' (blushing and swooning), whereas a man looking at a woman sexually is commonly written as 'vulgar' (making rude remarks and even hooting!). Can be used quizzically in combination with All Women Are Lustful
, Bigger Is Better in Bed
, Chippendales Dancers
, Female Gaze
, Guy on Guy Is Hot
, Long-Haired Pretty Boy
, Lust Object
, Male Frontal Nudity
, Shirtless Scene
, Walking Shirtless Scene
and Yaoi Fangirl
A cross between Hello, Nurse!
, Ms. Fanservice
or Mr. Fanservice
and the Gaze
open/close all folders
Anime & Manga
- In Basilisk, when Oboro and Gennosuke are crossing a very narrow bridge, we follow Oboro's gaze as she stares at Gennosuke's back.
- Done with tongue planted firmly in cheek in Darker than Black, where Mayu gets a little too fixated on Hei — particularly his "delicious collarbone" — after a late-night rescue.
- In the anime version of Dragon Ball Z, Princess Snake first stares at Goku for his body; she keeps staring, though, because of his table manners.
- In the FAKE II, JJ does this to Dee and attempts to glomp him after a case when Dee is found shirtless. Dee is not pleased.
- Matsuoka Gou from Free! does this with every shirtless guy in swim trunks she sees. She's especially fond of Haruka's arm muscles.
- Sôsuke from Full Metal Panic! is subject to this a lot by all of his admirers. His looks are enough to get everyone (and I mean everyone) to stop in their tracks and check him out. Even small part bystanders that never show up again (which is made especially obvious in the novels). One lampshaded instance was with Nami (from the novels), where she pretended that she was only watching him change clothes because she wanted to make sure he was an AS pilot. Lemon teases her and notes that she was just checking him out. Oh, and the anime knows to show plenty of Fanservice of him being shirtless (complete with cute little scars all over his body). Including a scene where he's hallucinating, and randomly imagines himself being tied up, shirtless, and in obvious distress — for no real reason at all.
- Despite being a Chaste Hero, Hayate pulls this on Hinagiku. After his gaze lingers too long she chastises him for it, but she definitely enjoys the feeling. It helps that he told her straight up that he got completely distracted because she looked so amazing in her dress that he couldn't help but stare.
- Notably, Hinagiku is the only one of his unwanted harem to get this from him. Even when seeing other girls nude, he turns away before they get their senses back enough to be chastised, he does blush after seeing (and then thinking back to) seeing Ayumu changing.
- THE iDOLM@STER - The audience of the Are We Live? show, particularly towards Azusa's outfit.
- In Katanagatari, Togame doesn't even bother with pretenses for ogling the perpetually shirtless Shichika — she just tells him to sit still to make it easier to do.
- In the first episode of Macross Frontier, it certainly looks like Ranka's subjecting Alto to some female gaze when they first meet (the Bishie Sparkle sets on so hard that you can hear it). Then she admits that she thought Alto was a very pretty girl until he opened his mouth. Alto is not amused.
- Monster: Johann's handsome features are frequently commented on and checked out by a lot of people.
- One episode of Nagasarete Airantou has Ikuto taking a bath and being unknowingly watched by Chikage. She glances at his body, makes several comments about his attractive features and blushes while doing so.
- Similarly, Ash of Pokémon pulls this one on Misty when he meets up with her between the Advance and Battle Frontier arcs. Misty doesn't chastise him for it.
- In Ranma ˝, Akane occasionally sees Ranma this way — broad shoulders, cute face, kind smile. In true Belligerent Sexual Tension style, it often immediately precedes Ranma himself making some spectacularly jerkish remark to her.
- Ranma's other would-be love interests also do this; it's just much rarer that they get the chance to do so. Kodachi does this to Ranma the first time she seems him. Despite the fact he just, you know, knocked her out cold and almost caused her to fall off the roof.
- When Akane sees a naked, male Ranma in the first episode/chapter, she can't help but let her eyes wander down there....
- Studio BONES spoofs it once again in Star Driver: apparently, Midori Okamoto's Cybody has a fanservice mode. It backfires, though.
- Suisei no Gargantia has the Beach Episode, where Amy and her friends force Ledo out of his pilot suit. They then unabashedly stare at him while he's in his boxers, one of them even commenting out loud that he has a nice body.
- Near the end of the Hot Springs Episode of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, most of the gang beat up the beastmen who operated the Ganmen-disguised-as-hot-springs-resort. The camera pans across the cast... revealing that Yoko is peeking at the completely naked Kamina's butt from the corner of her eye. When he makes a move that would bring her into his sight, she blushes and quickly looks upwards. Shortly afterwards, her jumping up and down in victory celebration makes her suffer a Wardrobe Malfunction... and Kamina immediately returns the favor.
- In the 14th episode of Tiger & Bunny, Karina mentions that lately she's been having trouble keeping her eyes off of Kotetsu.
- Vampire Hunter D can't walk into a single town without half the residents attempting to undress him with their eyes.
- Violinist of Hameln: Shchelkunchik has a very... painful... take on this trope. Basically, during a divination class, Shchel's crystal ball shows the whole class a humiliating event in his childhood that ended with him pantsless in the school pool with a water scorpion pricking his delicate parts. Everyone comments on how big and swollen it became, the girls most of all.
- In Wolf Guy - Wolfen Crest, Ms. Aoshika asks Inugami to strip in order to see if he has any wounds (and thus prove if he was the boy she met the night before). She doesn't find any injuries, but she's not exactly disappointed...
- Gou Matsuoka from Free! LOVES her job as Iwatobi Swim Club manager
- In Red Hood and the Outlaws after showing off a fancy new pair of Flight Wings Arsenal remarks on how cool Red Hood looks. Starfire thinks he's talking about Red Hood's "buns" and wholeheartedly agrees.
- In Shazam! The Monster Society of Evil, the reporter that Captain Marvel goes to for help takes a very obvious look at his crotch while standing right in front of him.
- Marvel Comics' character Starfox causes this as a side effect of his powers, besides also being a Flying Brick. And he can turn the effect Up to Eleven to overload your pleasure center and incapacitate you by feeling too good. Well, if you've gotta be attacked, that's the way to go...
- Kate Bishop spends a few panels staring at a half-naked Clint Barton and at her one night stand, Noh-Varr, as he dances in their room in his underwear.
- Ashes to Ashes, the Pokemon Ruby And Sapphire fanfic, has May doing this to Maxie!
- Beth in Children Of Time, pretty constantly towards Sherlock Holmes, best summed up the morning after their wedding. Both are putting on clothes, and she tells him that he's not the only one "enjoying the show". Cue Adorkable blushes on both sides.
- Cherry Lipgloss did this with describing Critic's work outfit. Subverted later on, as more people view it as dressing like "white trash".
- NGE Broken Sequence: All of the female technicians in the room, minus Maya Ibuki, when Shinji seals his plugsuit.
- Stray does something like this in some of its descriptive passages, particularly when Adamska is being described, although the POV character is another man. The story also hangs a lampshade on it:
'"Honestly", Otacon thought ruefully, "At this rate, next I'll be thinking about how big and strong and manly he is."
Films — Live Action
- In Captain America: The First Avenger Agent Carter tries to touch post-transformation Steve's abs (for those of you not in the know, the procedure made him ridiculously buff) but quickly pulls her hand back. The moment was not scripted.
- Close Enough to Touch: Ashley (Tracy Ryan) watches and talks to a half naked Brad (Sabastien Guy), fantasizes about having lesbian encounter with Suzanne Henderson (Brandy Montegro), flirts with and hits on Jason Henderson when he's pushing iron with his shirt off. Eating the Eye Candy makes Ashley so horny that even after having sex with her boyfriend, Neal Henderson (Jason Schnuit), she needs to pleasure herself.
- In the movie Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, after Lola has just met Sam and he's walking away, there's a moment where the camera focuses on his butt.
- In Exit to Eden, Mistress Lisa can't keep her eyes off Citizen Elliot when she's swimming.
- Kate McQueen (Cindy Crawford) is shown scoping out Max Kirkpatrick's (Billy Baldwin) ass at the gas station in Fair Game.
- Far and Away has a scene where Shannon tries to ogle Joseph while he's undressing (without letting him know she's doing it) through the flimsy screen that divides their room.
- In Pacific Rim, Mako Mori stares at Raleigh changing clothes in his room, until he catches her doing so. She quickly runs into her room and closes the door...and continues to watch him through the peephole.
- Samantha watches her naked neighbor shower in this scene from Sex and the City: The Movie.NSFW
- Thor: It's pretty obvious just how much Darcy appreciated Thor's physical attributes.
Darcy: *staring* You know, for a crazy, homeless person... he's pretty cut.
- Jaimie Alexander, the actress who played Sif, talked in an interview about this kind of thing going on behind the scenes. People on set agreed it was in character for Sif, but Jaimie did it because... well, just look at Chris Hemsworth.
Yeah…so how hard was it not to just touch what Kenneth Branagh
aptly describes as that ‘awe inspiring” chest every so often?
Jaimie Alexander: Oh no, I would always go up to him like, ‘Hey what’s up how you doing?’ slapping him on the chest. Sometimes my hand would linger a little too long, or I would stare at him and they were like, ‘That’s okay, you’re just in character.’ And I was like, ‘Yeah…that’s why I’m doing it.’
- Funnier still, during an interview for The Avengers, the cast fully admit to being so awed by Chris Hemsworth's size and impressive build that they were reduced to often "just standing around touching him." There's even a .gif floating around of Robert Downey Jr. grinning like a twelve year old as he squeezes Hemsworth's bicep while Hemsworth just smiles and laughs.
- The Transporter 3. Valentina maintains a sullen attitude towards Badass Driver and fellow hostage Frank, until the latter takes off his shirt to fight a gang of mooks. We see her smile in appreciation and their Belligerent Sexual Tension starts from that moment, culminating in Valentina forcing Frank to take off his shirt again for some Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex.
"You think it's only man turned on by striptease?"
- From What Women Want, among other things, the line, "Oh my God I just looked at his penis. I hope he didn't see me..." Of course, he does, and uses a quick adjustment of his pants to immediately draw her attention right back there
- In ''Youngblood'' A fully clothed Jessie Chadwick (Cynthia Gibb) gets three lingering stares at Dean Youngblood's (Rob Lowe) bare butt.NSFW
- Jerin Whistler of A Brother's Price is among the most beautiful men alive. Thanks to the scarcity of men and the resulting broad inversion of gender roles, he's given predatory looks and unwanted touches by most women who aren't family.
- The image for this trope page is the comic book version of the Anita Blake Vampire Novel series, in which the main character Anita often has problems with this trope seeing as about 99% of the people surrounding her are gorgeous supernatural men who want to get into her pants. That poor woman.
- In The Belgariad, most of the story is told from 3rd-person limited perspective, from the point of view of the hero, Garion. Every so often it switches to his romantic interest, who often spends time watching him. There's some descriptions of his sandy hair (usually tousled) and how his face is "nice enough".
- This actually saves the main character's life in one of the Ciaphas Cain novels, since pausing to admire the view makes an assassin's attack miss him.
- In The Dresden Files, this happens automatically whenever a White Court vampire is in line of sight. Its not voluntary, either; the White Court exude a natural aura that draws everyone's attention to their physical beauty, both male and female. This helps them "hunt" their prey, drawing mortals to them so they can feed on their emotions (lust, fear, and despair being the big three). Its also deconstructed, however, when one of them, Thomas, tries to live a normal life without maliciously feeding on humans, as he can't hold down a job because his coworkers inevitably get drawn to him through his involuntary mojo and he gets fired when they jump his bones and his innate hunger for emotions takes over.
- However, it is used for humorous purposes as well. After a bad fight, Thomas is left shirtless and strolls into the bedroom to find one. Harry notes that Murphy watches him and after being caught, she simply shrugs and says it's a nice view. Cue Thomas from the other room, "I heard that."
- Fate/Zero plays around a bit with this. When Saber and Irisviel first encounter Lancer, the prose takes an immediate turn from standard to totally purple as it waxes rhapsodic about his beautiful eyes, his elegant features, the small beauty spot on his face that seems to add even more charac—Wait, beauty spot? Yep, it turns out that Lancer is the Heroic Spirit of Diarmund Ua Duibhne (who has a supernatural ability that makes all woman who see his face fall in love) and the prose snaps straight back to normal once Irisviel realizes the mind-trickery and overcomes it with her innate magical resistance.
- Narrator of The Hollows, Rachel Morgan, tends to get kind of distracted around attractive men. It even happens when she converses with the demon Midias.
- Night Huntress has several scenes with Cat commenting on how attractive Bones is.
- In Pride and Prejudice, Mr. Darcy takes the breath away from every female in Hertfordshire just by walking into the room: "Mr. Darcy soon drew the attention of the room by his fine, tall person, handsome features, noble mien..."
- Take a sip for every mention Bella from Twilight makes of Edward's Supernatural Gold Eyes, marble skin that sparkles in the sunlight, or his overall beauty being comparable to an angel's or a Greek god's. You'll be blacked out under the table in no time. Twilight: Causing liver failure since 2006!
- A great number of Old Skool romance novels (that are in first person, from the woman's point of view) use this — and understandably so.
Live Action TV
- From Almost Live: "Great Butts With Wendy White"
- During the Shirts vs. Skins basketball game, Melana on Average Joe was distracted by the Hunks' (Skins) bodies after they took off their shirts.
- Ditto for Larissa on Average Joe Hawaii when the Hunks took their shirts off for the Shirts vs. Skins dodgeball game.
- Jessie watches J.D. shower in the Baywatch episode, "The Natural".
- In the "Band Candy" episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer Buffy can't keep her eyes off of Angel's sweaty bare chest.
- In "Go Fish", Buffy, Willow and Cordelia assign themselves to the pool as an excuse to watch the swim team practice.
- In one of the later seasons of Buffy, while the Scoobies are at the Bronze, Willow spends about 2 minutes eying a hot girl in leather pants with Xander. It becomes rather awkward for them both when the group realizes that said girl is Dawn.
- Castle and Beckett have a history of doing this to each other due to massive amounts of Unresolved Sexual Tension. For example, in season two, Castle had gotten attacked by an angry dog when they went to bust a criminal so his pants were ripped and Beckett watches his ass as he walks away with a rather impressed expression. In a deleted scene from season three, Beckett leans over the murder board to write something and Castle checks out her ass. The even more amusing part is that it wasn't scripted—Stana Katic and Nathan Fillion came up with that bit on their own.
- In the "Toni's Boys" episode of Charlies Angels, Kris Munroe got really turned on in a male strip club when she watched male Angel Bob Sorenson take his shirt off and then watched a male stripper rehearse.
- In an episode of Charmed, Phoebe has to be physically pulled away from watching Bane Jessup put on his clothes.
- On Drrt, Courtney Cox enjoys a full view of a naked Julian Acosta.NSFW
- Doctor Who companion and Torchwood lead Jack Harkness is the recipient as often as he is the instigator.
Rory: Aren't you going to turn your back?
- On Dog Eat Dog, host Brooke Burns and contestants Lisa and Jessica enjoy watching Colin play Strip Golf
- In Game of Thrones, Arya Stark stares at Gendry the blacksmith as he works shirtless at Harrenhal.
- One episode of Grey's Anatomy has April stare at Jackson while he is changing his shirt. She can't remember what she was talking about.
- In a second season episode of Hannah Montana, Miley gazes (there's a spotlight and everything) at a boy named Trey, whom she later thinks is "the one". Of course, Trey is never seen again after that episode, save a brief mention in an episode or two later saying that they had broken up.
- Captain Horatio Hornblower R.N.: Nearly every male character fancies the Duchess of Wharfedale who is an older yet very sexy and cheeky woman. Sailor Styles starts describing her hotness to Mr. Hornblower, an Acting Lieutenant who is in command of a prize ship and supposed to give Her Grace a passage home to England. Hornblower has to stop the excited Styles from gushing.
Styles: Captain Pellew's coming aboard, sir. And, uh, a lady, sir. Nice dress, sir; good-looking.
Hornblower: Don't froth at the mouth, Styles. You've seen a woman before, man.
Styles: Not in six bloody months, I haven't.
- Lois and Clark has a Sexy Silhouette scene where both Teri Hatcher and Dean Cain mutually flabbergasted each other while changing clothes. Very unsubtle in Getting Crap Past the Radar — Clark pops his cork, while Lois drips a little puddle onto the floor. I'm talking about the champagne, of course.
- Lost Girl has several examples.
- Used as Ship Tease when Kenzi is distracted by Hale's abs. It's also a pretty hilarious moment since she is all but devouring him with her eyes.
- The ENTIRE premise of the season four teaser trailer. It features Bo washing her car and getting soaked and covered in soap while Lauren and Dyson look on. Also funny that Lauren has completely forgotten about the ice cream cone that is dripping down her wrist.
- The Nanny: In the "Maggie's Boyfriend" episode, Fran and Maggie are seen looking at Maggie's boyfriend Michaels butt in this scene.
- On the short-lived serial Pasadena, Catherine McAllister (Dana Delany) can't keep her eyes off Henry Bellows (Alan Simpson). In this scene from the "Henry's Secret'' episode, at the McAllier's pool, after Henry takes his shirt off, Catherine asks Henry if he'd like to borrow a pair of trunks as an exuse to look at his lithe, young body; she then takes another look at his body when she goes in to get Henry and Lily (Alison Lohman) some lemonade. In the following episode, "Hostile Environment", after Catherine watches him get undressed. After Henry turns around to climb into bed, Catherine scopes out his ass in this scene.
- The 1995 BBC miniseries adaptation of Pride and Prejudice took the admiration for Mr. Darcy Up to Eleven. There was lots of camera time devoted to Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy riding horseback, bathing, swimming, or casting smouldering gazes around. Even ladies in-universe liked it. Colin Firth was a lust object for BBC female viewers due to one particular scene: Having a swim and "Mr. Darcy! Your breeches!". It reached Memetic Mutation levels. The scene was parodied in Lost in Austen: Have a look here.
- Done numerous times in Scrubs, sometimes seriously (e.g. with Colin Farrell), sometimes less so (where the distracted gazer walks into, or trips over something), and sometimes just outright mocked and lampshaded (when a male patient had such a winning smile it was affecting everyone who saw it).
- Inverted: No one wants to see The Todd's banana hammock.
- Done often on Sex and the City, in particular with Samantha's various conquests, and especially ramped up for The Movie. She is quite tempted by her hot next-door neighbor, who just so happens to shower outside as the camera lovingly lingers over his body and even gives us a brief cock shot.
- Lampshaded in this "Smack the Pony" sketch.
- In Smallville, Lana once has a long look at Clark, who has just fixed a water pipe.
- Chloe has a smaller one in Devoted, but in Escape she gets a good long one when he is naked save for a towel.
- In an episode of Spin City, the female workers keep calling in a hot water-cooler repair guy (or something similar) with increasingly-trivial or thinly-veiled requests because they enjoy watching him work. Of course, he soon gets fed up with being seen as a sex object.
- This Season 3 teaser trailer of The Vampire Diaries should come with a sponge (to sop up the drooling) and a biscuit to sop up that gravy...
- In the Made-for-TV Movie Vows of Deception, Lucinda (Cheryl Ladd) enjoys Nick's (Michael Woolson) bare chest.
- The X-Files:
- Eating the female eye candy happened in "First-Person Shooter" with the character of Jade Blue Afterglow, a super hot stripper dancer who was wearing a silver metallic miniskirt outfit with chains. Testosterone frenzy ensued. All the male officers tried to watch her interrogation, the detective investigating the case and Mulder both bit their knuckle to show they liked her a lot, and Mulder couldn't help grinning sillily while questioning her.
- Eating the male eye candy occurred in "Bad Blood" when Scully first met sheriff Hartwell. When he entered, she was completely dazzled by his cowboy looks, complete with stylish boots, jeans, gun belt, shirt, leather coat, badge, and hat. He had a cute smile and prominent cheekbones. And he most definitely did not have big buck teeth nor did he have a slight overbite. Jealous much, Mulder?
- From The Young and the Restless: the look Lauren Fenmore gives a half naked Brad Carlton when she meets up with him in the weight room at the Jabot gym.
Music & Music Videos
- Photographer Christie Jenkins' book A Woman Looks at Men's Buns which is a collection of pictures of men's butts, Jenkins calls herself a "connoisseur" of men's butts.
- Playgirl magazine
- Teen fashion magazines do (and induce) this all the time.
- Text implications suggest that the Handmaiden is doing this to a male player character in Knights of the Old Republic 2.
- In the PC adventure game Laura Bow: The Dagger of Amon Rah, the main character Laura and many of the other female characters spend a lot of time talking about how attractive Steve is, from the moment you meet him on.
- In Mass Effect 3 when a romanced Kaidan returns to the Normandy Shepard's gaze goes to Kaidan's butt. Shepard gives a smirk for good measure.
- There's a moment in The Haunting Of Castle Malloy where this happens off-camera. When Nancy calls her girlfriends Bess and George for hints, they pause in talking to her, to savor the sight of a perfect poolside set of washboard abs.
- In Neverwinter Nights Hordes of the Underdark, at one point a Mimic steals your character's armor. If your character is male and Aribeth is in the party, some humorous dialogue ensues.
- The Autobiography of Jane Eyre: In episode 13, Mr Rochester was visibly smitten with Jane. He got mysteriously injured at night and she treated his wound. He was absolutely checking her out at the end of the episode before he left the room. Though, she looked really cute in her nice pyjamas.
- The Lizzie Bennet Diaries: Lydia Bennet invokes Wet Sari Scene by spilling a cup over George Wickham's T-shirt and convinces him to take it off. Mr. Fanservice gladly obliges, and both Lydia and Lizzie enjoy his abs. He's a swimmer, you know.
- Red vs. Blue: Shortly after meeting Crunchbite the alien, Tucker has a hard time pulling Tex's attention away from his... alien... muscle structure.
Tex: Well that's just a matter of penis- I mean uh, opinion, opinion, that's, that's it.
Church, her boyfriend: (beat) Smooth.
- Survival of the Fittest 's Paulo Abbate just can't get enough of companion Becca Everett's backside, to the point where he falls behind because he's spending so much time admiring it.
- Code Lyoko: In the opening of Season 4 episode "Bad Connection", Ulrich is stuck in the hallway wearing just a Modesty Towel. When Aelita and Yumi walk in with Jérémie, the girls at first (weakly) pretend to be looking away, but spend pretty much the rest of the scene ogling.
- On Family Guy, when Peter gets plastic surgery to make himself extremely handsome, Lois loses the ability to form complete sentences.
- Lois also drills a hole in Stewie's room to watch Tom Brady shower (then fights with Meg over who gets to look through it).
- In The Road to El Dorado, Chel gets Miguel and Tulio their ceremonial clothes for the celebration in their honor and then doesn't leave the room when they start undressing. Tulio notices this and promptly asks her if she minds, which she replies, "No." She eventually does leave, but not without taking a good long look at them first.