Face Nod Action
Two or more characters are put in a situation where they need to work together. After silently assessing the situation:
- The characters face each other.
- Both (or all) of them nod (or something equivalent) at each other, maybe exchange a few words.
- They then perform an action.
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Anime and Manga
- Happens near the beginning of the original Ghost in the Shell film when Section 6 police raid a meeting. When the armed guards inside detect the raid, they nod at each other just before opening fire. Watch it here, starting at 2:55.
- Occurs in Naruto between Kakashi, Asuma, and Kurenai in Itachi's first appearance.
- Happens in the film Jack and the Witch while Jack and Barnaby Bear are facing off against some harpies in front of the evil queen's castle. They make scary faces and jump in the air, scaring off the harpies.
- Hanaukyō Maid Tai La Verite episode 11, Taro and Konoe Tsuragi do this before escaping the underground area where Mariel was being held.
- Cowboy Bebop episode "Boogie Woogie Feng Shui". The two gunmen pursuing Jet and the girl do this just before they enter the bar.
- Pokémon anime.
- Episode "A Poached Ego". Team Rocket (Jessie, James and Meowth) do it just before performing a heroic You Shall Not Pass so their Pokemon can escape a poacher.
- Episode "Oh Do You Know the Poffin Plan!" After Forsythia's Roserade realizes it doesn't need its scarf to be a hero and attacks Team Rocket, the protagonists (Ash, Brock and Dawn) and Forsythia look at each other, nod their heads and unleash their Pokemon on Team Rocket.
- Episode "Wherefore Art Thou, Pokémon?" Team Rocket is trying to kidnap two Nidoran named Maria and Tony. While they're in the grasp of Jessie's Arbok, Maria and Tony look at each other, nod, and bite down on Arbok holding them, causing it to release them.
- Happens occasionally in Digimon
- In With Strings Attached, Paul and John scream at each other in an inane argument over whether Paul should break a ledge to jump across a canyon. Meanwhile, behind them, the Hunter is skimming floating stepping squares over the canyon. George and Ringo try to get the others' attention about this, but they're ignored, so, after looking at one another and nodding, Ringo telekinetically messes them up a bit so they quit arguing and pay attention.
- Occurs twice in Our Man Flint.
- Rodney, Gila and Gruber nod to each other before Gruber uses a device to destroy a dam
- Gila and Gruber do it before trying to assassinate Flint in the restaurant.
- In Like Flint. A "chain of nods" occurs when the female commandos from Fabulous Face nod at each other before beginning "Operation Smooch".
- I Robot did this, but with winks.
- Laurel and Hardy are always nodding to each other. What follows isn't always cool, but it's funny.
- Boondock Saints: in the bar brawl, the brothers look at each other, down their shots at the same time, then attack simultaneously.
- Return of the Jedi. As Luke is about to be executed by Jabba the Hutt, he looks at Lando Calrissian (who's disguised as one of Jabba's guards) and nods. Lando nods back, and Luke starts to execute his plan.
- Subverted in The Losers; the main villain, dissatisfied with how his negotiations with a doomsday device developer are proceeding, nods to his henchman... who then throws the scientist off the roof. The villain immediately calls his henchman on this - noting the waste of talent - but then negotiations resume with the surviving scientists.
- Near the beginning of Johnny Dangerously, Dundee and his gang are about to enter Maroni's club. But first they all nod at each other, several times, before Dundee blurts out "No more nodding!"
- In Superman Returns, this happens between two cops before apprehending a heavily armed thug.
- Heavy Metal: As Den and his companion are about to enter the Queen's quarters, they look at each other, both nod and push the door open.
- Happens, in a way, in Solo Command. The viewpoint character can only put it thusly.
Wedge didn't answer immediately. Donos could see the top of his head as the commander looked left and right, communicating with the other senior officers by what might have been a combination of shared experience and telepathy.
Live Action TV
- 1960's Batman: in the episode "The Bookworm Turns", the Dynamic Duo are surrounded by the Bookworm's henchmen. Two of the henchmen look at each other, nod, then both take a swing at Batman.
- Continuum: in the pilot episode several members of the Liber8 terrorist group were about to be executed. Two of them looked at each other, nodded their heads, then each member of the group tossed a part of a device together and created a time vortex that sent them all to the past.
- In one episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, some aliens are blathering on about how superior they are to humans. With nothing more than a few nods, Picard communicates to Riker and Data that they should materialize a cage around the aliens.
- Used to be prevalent in the WWF: Two wrestlers who usually don't team up would be paired in a tag team ("Stone Cold" Steve Austin and The Undertaker for example); they walk up to each other backstage and rather than discuss any strategy or anything, just silently nod to each other as if to say "Let's do this!" and head out to the ring.
- A common occurrence in battle royals involves the two biggest men in the match cleaning house and leaving everyone else down and out, and end up on opposite sides of the ring. They will then look around, face each other, stare down, nod, and battle it out one on one.
- One of Dave Chappelle's acts talks about how during a hostage crisis on a plane, he and a Nigerian fellow nodded at each other, which made a nearby white couple think that they were going to save everyone.
- Donkey Kong 64: the two Kritters who control King Kutt-Out do this at the end of the battle before running away.
- In a cutscene toward the end of Ace Combat 5, Pops, Grimm and that journalist guy look at one another and nod before making a run for it from Perrault, who is holding them at gunpoint.
- Persona 4: done twice by Chie and Yukiko when deciding to give the boys the curry they made and pushing them off a cliff into a pool of water.
- Done by Yu and Yukiko when joining Chie and Teddie in the water in the Beach Episode in Golden.
- Done by the entire team before they fight Izanami.
- At the end of Alpha Protocol, if Conrad Marburg, considers Mike a Worthy Opponent and is made to question working for Henry Leland, the confirmation of him just leaving takes the form of this.
- The Simpsons: Homer and Snowball II (yes, the cat) both walk into the tavern at the same time and stop look at each other. After an awkward silence, Homer says, "I won't tell if you don't tell."
- Used by T.J. in the opening titles of Recess.
- It's A Trap!, Family Guy's parody of Return of the Jedi, features one of their trademark Overly Long Gags mocking the Face Nod Action of the original.
- Motorcity: in "Reunion", Mike and Chuck do this before trapping Kane in his Humongous Mecha in an energy ball.
- Happens in this clip from a candid camera-esque social experiment looking at what people would do when witnessing a child abduction. Happens around two minutes in.