Exposed Eyeballs as Eyes

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It's almost as if someone drew black dots on a pair of pingpong balls and then glued them to his head...
"But I must question how Croc's eyes prevent him from dropping dead. He has no shielding from the air. It's literally just eyes stuck on top of a head. Nothing covering them. It's actually kind of stomach-turning. Simply disgusting. And yet... fascinating. I wonder how it feels to grasp the back of one's eyeball... oh, it must feel so liberating..."
Caddicarus in his review of Croc.

Most normal eyes are visibly connected to their user's body in some way, whether it be by the standard optic nerve and them sitting comfortably behind a pair of eyelids, or, say, them being placed on a stalk if you're some sort of alien, crab, or snail. Not in this case; this trope is about characters whose eyes are literally exposed eyeballs that aren't visibly connected to anything, and at best are just slapped on top of their head (somehow without falling off or rolling away).

May either be a specific case of Cartoony Eyes, or a trait of a particularly monstrous or weird being. May involve Eyes Do Not Belong There. Not to be confused with Faceless Eye, which is about a single eyeball devoid of a body or face. Compare Disembodied Eyebrows.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Films - Animated 
  • In Toy Story, Mr. Potato Head and his wife, being toys with detachable parts, sometimes have to hold their eyes in their hands in order to see better.

    Literature 
  • In Discworld, Blind Io is the chief of gods. The most notable characteristic of his is that he has a piece of cloth covering where his eyes should be, and he instead uses lots of floating eyeballs in order to see.

    Puppet Shows 

    Video Games 
  • In Croc, Croc and many other creatures have their eyes be just ellipses placed on top of their heads.
  • In Darkest Dungeon, we see a dark take on this trope: one of the bosses is a Doomsayer who kept showing up at the estate's hamlet to turn the population against your ancestor, because the latter was about to unearth something unspeakable. Said ancestor gave him one Rasputinian Death after another, but the doomsayer kept returning to rile up the population. The ancestor finally showed him that he wasn't about to unearth the unspeakable thing, but already had unearthed the portal to summon it. The doomsayer Went Mad From The Revelation, tore out his own eyes in madness, and became the prophet of the cult worshiping the thing. When you get to fight him, he still holds his disembodied eyes in his hand: they are still alive, and he supposedly sees through them. (And, inversely, peering into them stresses out your dungeoneering party for obvious reasons.)
  • Don't Starve: Poison birchnut trees, a kind of enemy resembling a monstrous, living tree that spawns from normal birchnut trees when you cut down too many, appear at first glance to have a single, large Eye on a Stalk... until you look closer, and see that there isn't actually any stalk involved: rather, the eyeball's a perfectly smooth orb that isn't actually connected to anything, but rather just precariously balanced on a pair of thin twigs sprouting from the tree's canopy.
  • In Kao the Kangaroo, Kao's eyes are just placed on top of his head. Notably, he's the only character in the series whose eyes are like this.

    Western Animation 
  • In Aaahh!!! Real Monsters, Krumm is a monster who has to hold his eyeballs in his hands in order to see.
  • Wish Kid had an episode with a ghost who could become invisible except for his eyes, which could then be knocked out of place.

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