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Eye Take

Occurs in a Reaction Shot. The character reacting to the outrageous whatever says nothing, but their eyes widen in a "these people are crazy" kind of way.

Compare Aside Glance when directed at the fourth wall, Fascinating Eyebrow when directed at the characters in question and Eye Pop for surprised cartoon character's eyes. May make use of Eyedscreen. Could be considered a subtrope of Facial Dialogue. Sometimes related to Oh Crap.


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     Anime and Manga 


  • Happens a lot in Foxtrot.
  • This is the third-greatest standby of political cartoons, next to illuminating the topic with convenient newspapers and labeling every available surface whether it needs it or not. Strawman Political will give a proposal while an average Joe, or a member of the affected group (e.g. a child for school policy) looks on in goggle-eyed horror.


     Live Action Television  

  • Newsradio: Often demonstrated by Dave Foley's character.
  • The X-Files: Gillian Anderson's eyebrows got a regular workout.
  • The Office: Jim Halpert (as played by John Krasinski) has elevated this into an art form on the U.S. version, as did his counterpart, Tim Canterbury in the original.
  • Hugh Laurie could be king of this trope. He basically eats the scenery with his eyes:
    • Bertie from Jeeves and Wooster
    • Doctors are meant to be unshockable, but House still finds plenty of excuses to be at the centre of an Eye Take.
  • The Thick of It: Peter Capaldi is a sufferer of ocular Chewing the Scenery. His character Malcolm Tucker gets several Eye Takes per episode, but the longest is probably the one of his eyes scanning the headline "MALCOLM TUCKER RESIGNS".
  • Battlestar Galactica (Reimagined)'s Saul Tigh does this an awful lot, especially after losing one of his eyes in the third season.
  • Eddie.Cantor. Rumor has it that he used stunt eyes.
  • The Apprentice (UK): Nick and Margaret make fantastic use of Eye Takes, along with Aside Glances, Fascinating Eyebrows and Deadpan Snarks, to punctuate the more... questionable antics of the contestants.
  • The X Factor is punctuated with Eye Takes. Most of Simon Cowell's expressions say more than words ever could. In this clip Simon didn't even need to describe "the worst guitar solo I have ever heard in my life" as his eyes did it for him.
  • Nathan Barley was known for its liberal use of reaction shots.
  • LOST: In one hilarious scene, this is Ben's only reaction when Hurley attacks him... with a hot pocket.
    Ben: Hello Hugo.
    Hugo: AAAHHH! [hurls hot pocket at him]
    Ben's eyes: ...did that just happen?
  • Bones: Cam Saroyan does this a lot. It's all a part of being the Only Sane Employee...
  • Yes, Minister: Sir Humphrey Appleby would do this when Jim Hacker introduced something that threatened his interests.
  • In Babylon 5, Centauri Ambassador Londo Mollari announces in council that under his people's new laws for the recently conquered Narn, the penalty for the murder of any Centauri by any Narn will be the execution of 500 Narns. The pak'ma'ra Ambassador features in an Eye Take, managing to pull off the look of shock despite the pak'ma'ra being Cthulhumanoid.
  • The Tenth Doctor does this when the Face of Boe tells him "You Are Not Alone".
    • Clara does this after watching the Eleventh Doctor regenerate.

     Professional Wrestling 

  • "The Franchise" Shane Douglas.
    • In Fall 1997, "Ravishing" Rick Rude had been acting as an adviser to ECW World Heavyweight Champion Shane Douglas, specifically picking Douglas' challengers for him.note  On the October 24, (taped October 16), 1997 episode of ECW Hardcore TV, Rude told Douglas that he had found him an opponent who had run roughshod over the WWF, over WCW, Japan and everywhere else that he had been. Guns N' Roses' "Welcome to the Jungle" hit, bringing out Douglas' Triple Threat stablemate "The Beast from the East" Bam Bam Bigelow, revealing that Rude had double-crossed Douglas. When the music hit, Douglas had a true Eye Take. Bigelow won the title, his only singles World Title, that night.
    • Douglas called out Goldberg on the September 4, 2000 WCW Monday Nitro. As soon as Goldberg's music hit, Shane's eyes popped in a true Oh Crap/My God, What Have I Done? moment. Shane recruited the Natural Born Thrillers (Shawn Stasiak, Chuck Palumbo, Mike Sanders, Mark Jindrak, Sean O'Haire, Reno [Rick Cornell] and Johnny the Bull [John "Johnny Stamboli"/"Rellik" Hugger] doing a weak Ur Example of what The Nexus would be ten years later) to help him, and, even with 8 GUYS against him, Goldberg was still able to win the match.
  • It is common for televised shows to cut to a close-up of audience members doing that during a particularly shocking moment.

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 

     Western Animation  
  • Transformers Animated: Done memorably in the premiere, when Optimus Prime learns where little organics come from.
  • Total Drama Island:
    • Characters tend to this in response to Chris mentioning something particularly dangerous about a challenge.
    • During the Aftermath segments of Total Drama Action after a particularly odd or unexpected moment (Eg- when a clip shows Trent sobbing hysterically and singing depressing heartbreak songs backstage) the camera would pan over to Noah and Cody either exchanging, '...Did we just see that?' glances or doing Eye Takes.
  • In the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic episode "Spike at Your Service", Rainbow makes a throwaway comment about Applejack's unfinished novel. As Rainbow continues talking about her own novel, Applejack's eyes are clearly saying "How does she know about that?!"

Eye PopCharacter Reaction IndexFace Fault
Double TakeThe TakeFace Fault
Eye SpyEye TropesFaceless Eye
Eye PopSurprise TropesGame Changer
Experienced ProtagonistCharacterization TropesFace of the Band
The TakeComedy TropesGASP!
Eye AwakenAdministrivia/Images Without a SourceFeed It with Fire

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