Goth Girls Know Magic

Gothy and Magical.

Goth girls. They like to wear black, fancy dresses, makeup that gives an eerie appearance, and religious imagery. There also tends to be the themes of supernatural and occult within the works of their subculture. So it's no surprise that they're often portrayed as wielding magic or other supernatural powers in fiction.

This prevalence of this trope lies in the origins of the goth subculture itself. Gothic literature has writers who have delved into horror and the supernatural like HP Lovecraft and Edgar Allan Poe, each of whom have influenced the subculture, and their literary works continue to remain highly popular among goths. Gothic artwork from the 18th and 19th centuries that have motifs of mysticism and morbidity influenced the visual taste of Gothic art. The same goes for cult supernatural horror films such as Dracula which appealed to early goths.

Since the release of The Craft, this trope can be tied to real life teenage rebellion. If a teen girl wants to rebel against the status quo of society, it's likely she'll either go Goth, take up some form of paganism, or do both at the same time. Fiction tends to take this farther, with Goth girls automatically casting hexes and flushing the Rule of Three down the toilet.

May overlap with Lady of Black Magic if she's composed and graceful enough. She'll often be an Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette, or will crossover with Raven Hair, Ivory Skin if portrayed as beautiful.

Examples

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    Anime and Manga 
  • Hilda from Beelzebub. She's always dressed in black Elegant Gothic Lolita, and has vast magical powers as a demon maid who serves under the Demon King.
  • One Piece: "Ghost Princess" Perona's Devil Fruit power is more "magical"-themed than average, letting her create ghosts and send an Astral Projection of herself. She wears gothic lolita and, to add to the gothiness, is very lonely, causing her to greatly desire companionship.
  • Sailor Saturn from Sailor Moon. She has a gothic physical appearance and usually dresses in purple and black. She's by far the most magically strong Sailor, able to destroy entire planets with the powers of silence and destruction. It's not so much that she's evil but that her role is to cleanse the dead and broken so that life can grow anew.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica has this Played With regarding Homura Akemi. She has shades of being goth, what with her darker outfit in comparison to the others and her sardonic and lonely personality, but her Time Master powers as a Magical Girl Warrior aren't as overtly magical as is typical for this trope. However, in Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion she fits this to a T when she ascends to Homulilly and Akuma Homura, gaining very gothic appearances to match the surge in magical power.
  • Marion Phauna from Shaman King. She wears a black gothic lolita dress, and as the daughter of a fortune teller she could already manipulate puppets even as a child, long before she even got her powers to use a Spirit as a Shaman.
  • Aki Izayoi of Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's, especially while she is the Black Rose Witch. She wears a Victorian-style dress, is lonely and angry at the world and her parents for shunning her, and has Psychic Powers that could turn her card's attacks into real fire and vines.

    Comic Books 
  • Black Alice from the Birds of Prey and Secret Six series is a Goth-styled anti-hero with the ability to effectively steal the powers of any magical being and temporarily use them as her own.
  • Empowered has Sistah Spooky, a gothy superhero who made a Deal with the Devil to use black magic.
  • Nico Minoru from Runaways is a Goth girl who ends up wielding the sorcerous artifact known as the Staff of One, which is powered by Blood Magic. In a bit of a tweak on the trope, her parents—both dark sorcerers—adopted the guise of devout Christians and vocally disapproved of Nico's Goth trappings.
  • In Stormwatch PHD, Black Betty is a Perky Goth who also happens to be a powerful mystic.

    Film 
  • The film version of Beastly has a Goth witch (played by Mary-Kate Olsen) cursing the lead to "Embrace the suck," effectively turning him into the most rad Beast ever.
  • The Craft, as mentioned above, wherein teenage rebellion and Goth style leads to magical terrorism.
  • The Dane Cook vehicle Good Luck Chuck has the titular Chuck cursed to have female troubles all his life by a Goth chick he turned down for a round of "Seven Minutes in Heaven" during his youth.
  • Bellatrix Lestrange wears distinctly Gothic clothing in the Harry Potter series along with black corsets and dark eyeliner and lipstick. And, like her literary counterpart, she's the Number Two of the Death Eaters as an extremely powerful witch well-versed in the Dark Arts and deadly in a duel. Her favorite curse also happens to be the Cruciatus curse.

    Literature 

    Live-Action TV 
  • A self-described witch in an episode of First Wave looks like a typical goth. While her "powers" are initially only shown in the form of baking cookies that poison Gua but are harmless to humans. She claims to have found the recipe in an old book, which then gets destroyed by a Gua. However, during Cade's fight with the Gua, the girl and a few other girls use some sort of ritual that possibly causes the Gua to be split in half by a falling axe.
  • Subverted in The Librarians 2014; when dark magic breaks out during a STEM fair, the initial suspects are a bunch of goths who've been hanging around despite not having exhibits, but it later turns out that they're only there because their leader is secretly pursuing one of the participants.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The Hollow Ones from Mage: The Ascension are often shorthanded as the "Goth Tradition." While their history is linked to subcultures reaching back to the flappers and Bright Young Things, and their magic style is basically chaos magic, they're tightly linked in with Goths in the present day.

    Video Games 
  • Vampire Ojou Rachel Alucard from BlazBlue. She's dressed in black Elegant Gothic Lolita and has a snarky personality to boot. She's a master sorceress as well as one of the few people in The Verse to use actual magic.
  • The resident Perky Goth Ophelia from Brütal Legend shows aptitude for the heavy metal magic. Justified by the setting, as goths seem to be a separate ethnicity descended from the members of the ill-fated Black Tear Rebellion, who drank from the Sea of Black Tears and were granted ancient powers.
  • Final Fantasy X has Lulu, a cold Black Mage with an obviously gothic-inspired outfit who begins the game with elemental spells and goes on to learn many other black magic spells provided you stay on her Sphere Grid Path.
  • Tharja is the darkest of the females in Fire Emblem Awakening and usually brooding and grim. She is a Dark Mage after all, and can cast dark magic along with standard elemental spells.
  • Larxene "The Savage Nymph" from Kingdom Hearts. The only female of Organization XIII, she's dressed in the standard all-black uniform and has an unfeeling personality yet bitchy personality. All the members of the Organization can use a brand of magic, and hers is of the electric variety.
  • Miranda, Morinth, and Jack are the gothier ladies of Mass Effect 2 and all have biotic powers. The gothiness is particularly evident in their Loyalty uniforms.
  • Persona 3 has Chidori, who's dressed in a white gothic dress and has a lonely and icy temperament to match. She has Psychic Powers to go along with the Persona summoning that the main cast possesses.
  • Gothita, Gothorita and Gothitelle from Pokémon are a family of feminine-looking Psychic type Pokémon, with designs based on both goth fashion and fortune tellers.

    Web Comics 
  • Cool Cat Studio, from T Campbell, features Liz, a Goth Girl who naturally has magical powers and knows everything about supernatural creatures.

    Web Original 
  • During the "Dark Nella" arc, The Nostalgia Chick invokes the trope (and uses it as an excuse to review The Craft) by picking up a random Goth girl off the street to try to fix Nella via magic.
  • In a student-created CGI short film called The Colors of Evil, a goth girl named Vivian summons a demon in an attempt to get rid of the annoying Alpha Bitch bullying her.

    Western Animation 
  • Dylan from Golan The Insatiable was able to summon the titular creature because of this.
  • Ming-Hua from The Legend of Korra. She wears a slate-gray outfit, has a bitter snark and long stringy hair, and rarely displays any facial expression that's not either "glower" or "malicious grin." She's also the most overtly temperamental and vicious of the Red Lotus. Easily one of the most powerful waterbenders in the series, she's also the only bender shown to not even need the use of arms—just as well, seeing as she was born without them—and can create as many water whips and ice blades as she wants.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic has Queen Chrysalis. She has an eerie and broken appearance that sticks out like a sore thumb in a cheerful cartoon and is a capable magic caster, able to shapeshift and fire magic beams from her horn.
  • Scooby-Doo! and the Witch's Ghost had some Wiccan goth girls who are seen making a potion. However, their version of magic appears to be mostly harmless/ineffective, and doesn't do a thing against the villain.
    • Of course, this was also the same Scooby Doo movie that had said character claim to be 1/16 Wiccan on her mother's side. So this might really be a subversion, in that Thorn's power came from her in-universe Wiccan side, rather than her supposed Gothiness, which was played more as just the Hex Girls' stage personas. Also, the "potion" was just an herbal treatment for their vocal cords. No actual magic was involved.
  • Invoked and subverted in the The Simpsons episode "Rednecks and Broomsticks" where Lisa befriend three young wicca. When the three teeen girls are arrested, suddenly, half the town becomes blind and the girls are blamed. Turn out that they are innocent and the cause of blindness was not the magic.
  • Teen Titans has two notable examples.
    • Raven fits the typical traits of a Goth with her reclusiveness and taste in dark things in general, but there are circumstances that push her to act in a gothy way. As the Half-Human Hybrid daughter of Trigon she can use spells demonic and magical in nature.
    • Jinx also has the general style of goth and a gloomy outlook on life in spite of her perkiness, and can use magical hexes that cause bad luck.
  • A somewhat less surprising (and less "rebellious", as it's actually the "family business") example is Triana Orpheus of The Venture Bros.. The Goth girl daughter of necromancer extraordinaire Dr. Byron Orpheus, Triana is studying magic with her mother, also an accomplished sorceress.