"Can I be scary? Well, whaddya think of this?"
The human face is supremely important on a social and biological level. Most of our non-verbal communication comes from reading subtle facial movements, and its importance in our cognitive thinking is best shown in our tendency to see faces in inanimate objects (think of how many times you've looked at a rock face and thought you'd seen two eyes and a mouth). So there's something genuinely disturbing to most people about seeing a face visibly distorted, mutated, or rearranged ... so, naturally, this type of Body Horror
is one of the most common Horror Tropes
It is in fact at least Older Than Feudalism
— armies the world over have based their war masks around this trope, and in mythology
and folklore, just about any self-respecting demon or supernatural evil will have one.
More recently, it has also become a staple of Surreal Horror
This is a main symptom of Coming Back Wrong.
Most humanoid examples of Our Monsters Are Weird
will fit this trope.
- This trope's well-meaning (but still scary) sister, The Grotesque
- Uncanny Valley, which usually ends up here by accident.
- Game Face, which comes into play when a supernatural villain disguised as a human flashes his true form's Nightmare Face to scare someone.
- Demon Head, cousin to this trope.
- Take Our Word for It, when the face is too grotesque to even show.
Interesting tidbit: this is one theory as to why so many people are afraid of clowns
. Exaggerated mouths, bulbous noses, and pin-prick eyes are downright terrifying to young children who haven't yet figured out that the person is wearing make-up and not deformed.
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Anime & Manga
- Bakemonogatari: Kanbaru makes a few during her fight with Koyomi.
- In Parasyte, many of the mutants suffer from this trope. This is primarily due to the fact that the titular Parasytes are shapeshifting creatures that take over a host body by invading, absorbing, and replacing the head, then change the head into whatever form is necessary for combat and/or consuming its victims.
- Very often in Higurashi No Naku Koro Ni. Some of the Ax Crazy expressions get really weird. Here's a good example◊.
- Here's one that is a bit more obvious.
- Umineko No Naku Koro Ni also makes use of this; a couple of times, the first twilight murders have all had their faces plowed in.
- It was rather easy to find that Auntie Eva was scary, with her cynical softness....but then she did this this. Sweet dreams, everyone.
- Also, Maria, of all people.And again.And again, in the following page.Just to emphasize her Creepy Child status.
- And then there's Rosa, who, although is the central character in Episode 2, makes this faceat a point. What hits the most is not the expression of it, but the situation. It came after a rather moving Crowning Moment of Heartwarming, and it hits you like a punch. Rosa, by this moment, really is losing her mind, anyone can tell.
- D. Gray-Man is very, very good at this. Half the Akuma qualify, and even they have nothing on the Millennium Earl. As he would probably say: <3
- Don't forget Tyki and Road. They have some pretty damn terrifying faces too.
- Fullmetal Alchemist also likes this. Besides a certain failed attempt at human transmutation◊, Envy's One-Winged Angel form is covered in screaming, melting faces begging for release from their torture. Oh, and there's the Cyclops army, whose stunning good looks have led the fandom to conclude that they're the illicit love children of Mass-Production EVAs and zombies.
- Hellsing has a lot of characters with these. Like Alucard's face on the first series box◊
- This is Renton◊ from Eureka Seven. This is Renton◊ when he sees a hallucination while mercilessly ripping apart an LFO in Episode 20. Any questions?
- Anyone going crazy in Soul Eater. It's a combination of Wide Eyes and Shrunken Irises, a Slasher Smile, and extreme violence in large quantities. In fact, Soul Eater likes to do this A LOT, both in its manga and subsequent anime adaptation, though here they are trying to be covered up by a Slasher Smile.
- Also, Asura's smile. Seriously, just... just look at it◊.
- Initially just played with in Bleach; instead of horrifically deformed faces, it's instead had a number of horrifying expressions mainly given out by Hollow Ichigo and Mayuri Kurotsuchi, so those never really counted as much as the other examples.... until this happened.
- How about this then.
- Unohana manages to have one of the most unsettling looks upon her face in the entire manga after her past self was revealed. Take a peek.
- As mentioned above, the MP-EVAs, which are basically Humongous Mecha straight out of the Uncanny Valley and grinning like madmen. Some of Asuka and Shinji's Freak Out faces may also count, and the (thankfully brief) shot of Asuka as a maggot-filled corpse in a particularly Mind Screw-y sequence in The End Of Evangelion definitely does.
- K from Shin Sekai Yori has an absolutely terrifying one. He has his eyes rolled back, his face pale, and sports a Slasher Smile if there ever is one when he slaughtered 1,000 villagers. On the first day of his rampage alone.
- Barefoot Gen has *lots* of this, what with people's eyes melting out of their sockets, faces burned off, etc.
- Shows up a few times in Wolf Guy Wolfen Crest. Haguro and Ryuuko in particular are very good at making these kinds of faces.
- Yu-Gi-Oh!: Yami Bakura and Yami Marik have the tendency to make these kinds of faces in the anime. Especially Yami Marik since he is prone to having veins randomly pop up on his face, usually while his eyes are out of proportion and his tongue sticking out. Even the Off Model shots of their faces are nightmarish.
- Perfect Blue: Mima sports one of these as she kills a guy while disguised as a pizza delivery guy, Rumi's eyes are too widely spaced, which gives her an eerie look, but it's towards the end of the movie where she really gets into this trope. And Me-Mania pretty much has this as his default facial expression.
- Beelzebub has this shot. It's drawn with so much detail it's disturbing.
- Serial Experiments Lain: The girl from episode 1 and 2, the one that's supposedly hit by a train. One word: HOLES. And Evil Lain's grin.
- Dear god, Angel Densetsu practically runs on this trope.
- Normally, Kyubey of Puella Magi Madoka Magica freaks viewers out with his Frozen Cat Smile. Not so in the manga◊.
- Wolf's Rain: Darcia makes a few of these.
- Mitsudomoe: Hitoha's face when she's mad, or whenever she feels like doing it.
- Prism Ark is normally a happy-go-lucky Harem Genre, but then there's FBC manga adaption, where this it turns Karin Mibu into a sadistic teacher, who's ready to give a Nightmare Face anytime she's fighting or getting upset. And then there's a devil Hyaweh, who's much worse than Karin.
- New Getter Robo, Batshit Ryouma is already insane with his Slasher Smile. The final episode has him absorbed a large amount of Getter Ray turning parts of his face and his eyes green. and then he starts his hot blooded and insane yelling. Scary...
- Magic Knight Rayearth: Vigor's face looks especially creepy when he first starts turning back into his monster form (he's a monster Ascot sent out to trick the Magic Knights, since Vigor can take on a cuter form that endeared itself to Hikaru), with the way his head is tilting slowly, his eyes are huge and glowing red, and his fur looks very wild too.
- Mawaru-Penguindrum Episode 11: Drugged up!Tabuki. Ribbit, ribbit, ribbit...
- This... from the recent manga addition "Hideout".
- Unfortunately, it's not the only one. Seriously.. holy crap.
- Toriko villains love this trope, and the worse their nature is, the more over-the-top disgusting their facial expressions during emotionally charged moments are.
- Manami from Life often puts on a Nightmare Face when she isn't trying to be cute.
- Gouda from Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd Gig was badly disfigured in an accident, but chose not to undergo reconstructive surgery because his new look was more memorable.
- Drosselmeyer from Princess Tutu has a permanent manic grin and unblinking owl-like red eyes etched to his face.
- If Fuan no Tane is compared to a car, Nightmare Face is the Nightmare Fuel that powers it. The stories are subtly written, almost never exaggerated but includes ridiculous amounts of people/demons/poltergeists having faces that should not exist in any case. These range from three blacks holes for eyes and mouth, diluted sclera and contracted pupils at the same time, faces made of shadow, completely agape mouths with unhinged jaws, face with only skin, and faces completely distorted like that of Rorschach from Watchmen. Special mention goes to the baby who was so ugly, they put a bag on it's face, leaving a hole for it to breathe. Too bad it's permanent smile covers two-thirds of it's face while it consistently begs for someone to talk to.
- Revolutionary Girl Utena: Saionji's face whenever he gets pissed. As well as the blank face or Scary Shiny Glasses that Anthy sometimes has. Also, in episode 38 when Akio tries to make Utena his princess Anthy responds with another scary blank face and her eyes roll back in her head as she disappears.
- Sasuke in chapter 574 of Naruto makes a creepy crazy face here.
- Of all series, One Piece gives us Caribou◊ and Big Mom◊.
- 6 of the Straw Hats have faces like this just before they layeth the smackdown on Oars during the Thriller Bark arc. Take a look at them... oh, except for Robin. Whatever you do, don't look at her...
- The Straw Hats do this again, this time during the Punk Hazard arc. Because they are out in the freezing cold, Luffy, Zoro, Usopp, and Robin need warm clothes, so they decide to steal them off of their attackers' backs! The scene can be seen here. Why are the Straw Hats so scary?!
- In-universe example: according to... Well, just about everyone at school in Hokenshitsu No Shinigami, Hades-Sensei has this. They even call him "Shinigami"!
- The final panel of the little girl in the Lolita costume after blowing up a school staff member's head using an indescribable weapon.
- Despite being a Shoujo, the horror anthology manga series Zekkyou Gakkyuu has many instances of horror faces to accompany each macabre story, including a seemingly kind grandmother who keeps a feudal Japanese diorama of dolls filled with the bloody remains and faces of her victims, the vengeful spirit of a kitten left to suffer and die after being run over by a car belonging to the chapter's soon-to-be Victim of the Week, an insane house-wife masquerading as a gift-giving online Pen-Pal named Mama, the ghost of a girl burned in the school incinerator by her jealous rival, a classroom of students who take up the appearances of any student who becomes popular in the school, the ghost of a one-armed girl who will respond to the victim's refusal to find her lost umbrella by tearing off their arms and killing them, a freeze tag demon, a money tree that tempts victims to greed by blooming money from its branches leached from the bodies of its victims underground, and even a lonely statue (huge emphasis on the LONELY).
- Do NOT make sensei angry in Assassination Classroom.Just don't.
- Hunter × Hunter is very fond of breaking these out now and then (they're usually found on Hisoka.)
- Every episode of Casshern Sins Cold Opens with random scenes of Casshern killing Luna. Oftentimes it'll settle on Casshern making this face.◊
- Of all people, Beck in the Big O manga gets one of these in his final appearance, when he's left in the bizarre Eldritch Location below Paradigm City. His last appearance is him making this face.
- Jonah Hex. (That second link includes an informative essay on what the result of Hex being unable to close his right eye would lead to.)
- Two-Face◊, obviously. Well, half of him. Varies from artist to artist, with Tim Sale's rendering (pictured) being particularly gruesome.
- The Joker, naturally. Frozen Face with a Slasher Smile? Check. Permanent Uncanny Valley Makeup? Check. Looks like a Monster Clown from your worst nightmares? Fucking check.
- Vos. Oh sweet holy crap, Vos. Vos is a Decepticon Justice Division member from Transformers More Than Meets The Eye, and he combines Cold-Blooded Torture with this trope. Transformer faces have been pretty ugly before, but somehow this takes The Blank, inverts the concept of the Face Stealer (a Face Giver, perhaps?), and comes out the other side unsettling and terrifying.
- Implied for Doctor Doom of Marvel Comics; first he gets his face scarred up by being caught next to an exploding machine (though precisely how badly scarred varies), and then he, in some tellings at least, puts his trademark metal facemask on. While it's still red hot.
- In Death Of The Family there is a very good chance that at some point, the Joker's...face is going to be shown. When that happens, it will not be a pretty sight.
- To those not in the loop, Joker's face was last seen HAVING BEEN CUT OFF prior to this arc.
Films — Animated
Films — Live-Action
- In Invisible Monsters by Chuck Palahniuk, the main character's lower jaw is shot off. This fanmade image◊ (WARNING: gory/NSFW) gives a pretty good idea of why this is a bit of an upsetting thing.
- Redwall's Slagar the Cruel has a badly mutilated Two-Faced look thanks to a snakebite in his youth.
- Riggu Felis from High Rhulain is probably even worse. After having his face raked by an osprey's talons, he is described as looking like this: "The black-and-grey-striped fur was normal from ears to eyes, but below that it was red, glistening flesh and bone. The whole muzzle, nose, and upper lip had been torn off. Half of the warlord's face was a frightful mask - a spitting, bubbling skeleton, as he continualy sucked air to breathe."
- The Phantom of the Opera. This is the primary cause of Erik's tragedy (which makes all the slightly-marred-prettyboy adaptations that much more galling).
- While we're at it: Sandor "The Hound" Clegane from A Song of Ice and Fire, who had the left half of his face burned off by his older brother when he was a kid.
- "The Dream" from Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark. Let's just say the pale woman from the original edition will make you wish you slept with a Warhammer 40000 weapon next to your bed.
- Also, the illustration from The Haunted House. We would post a link, but we're too scared to search.
- Quasimodo in Victor Hugo's novel The Hunchback of Notre Dame is described as being so ugly, people mistake him for the Devil.
- Voldemort is described as having a face like a skull, with glowing red eyes and slits for nostrils. He got this way by splitting his soul to achieve immortality through his Horcruxes—he actually used to be handsome as a young man. Ralph Fiennes does a pretty good job of conveying this description in the movies.
- Menshikov from The Kane Chronicles, whose face was burned when he tried and failed to awaken Ra.
- A heroic example can be found in Bes, whose trademark attack is to scare the shit out of his opponent by distorting his face hideously and screaming "BOO!" Not that he's that handsome when he's not making that face.
- From the first book (and second to an extent) there is a demon named Face-Of-Horror who is Exactly What It Says on the Tin and worse. Compared to how other demons can be called Death-to-Corks and have corkscrews or other objects (or limbs) replacing their heads, Face-Of-Horror is a legitimately terrifying demon.
- Doctor Who:
- In "The Empty Child" the gas mask forces itself out of the mouth and over the victim's face with an audible cracking of the bones.
- In "Forest of the Dead" we get Miss Evangelista's horribly distorted◊ face in the virtual reality.
- The infectees in Russell T Davies and Phil Ford's "The Waters of Mars" with their split, cracked faces.
- The Weeping Angels. The grey faces of a humanoid angel statue, with fangs◊.
- The Silence from series 6, with their eye-covering eyelids, long faces and lack of a nose and mouth.
- The Autons, which were mannequin-like at first, but turned alive. They turn more human-ish later on, to the point where in the episode "Spearhead from Space", they look completely human. It's not scary now at all, but back in the eighties when most of the villains were Daleks or wore rubber suits... oh god◊.
- The Master in The Deadly Assassin and The Keeper of Traken who, being on the very verge of death, had basically become a walking corpse with the skeletal face to match (as best makeup of the 1970s & 80s could manage, anyway).
- A lot of Doctor Who monsters, especially if they initally seem friendly, get a lot nastier-looking when they get down to business. For example, the Gelth◊ from "The Unquiet Dead"
- The Siren◊ from "The Curse Of The Black Spot" when she gets angered.
- Subverted in "Midnight." When Skye turns around, there is clearly a new consciousness, but her face is unchanged.
- The "Angry Face"◊ of the mechanical Smiler androids from "The Beast Below". Their heads rotated 180 degrees to display one of two Frozen Faces — one pleased and smiling, the other disappointed and frowning. This made the appearance of the angry face, which was furious and snarling — and revealed by rotating the head another 180 degrees — a total surprise.
- The creature dubbed "The Great Mutato" in The X-Files, a genetically-engineered mistake whose many deformities included a grotesquely oversized double-face. As it turns out, though, he wasn't such a bad guy, and in fact his greatest desire was to see Cher in concert.
- Though obviously a mask, who doesn't wish they could forget the chilling grimace of Mr. Noseybonk from the old British TV series, Jigsaw? And if that wasn't bad enough, Stuart Ashen had to go and use his powers of necromancy to revive the horror!
- Papa Lazarou of The League of Gentlemen.
- Pennywise in the made for TV movie version of IT.
- Fringe has one episode where a biological weapon results in people developing scar tissue at an alarming rate. Biggest problem with this is that it turns them into a blank, covering their eyes, nose, and mouth, resulting in them suffocating.
- Mild-mannered demon Clem on Buffy is capable of showing one, while we only see the back of his head, in an obvious Shout Out to Beetlejuice.
- On Angel—Jasmine's real face. Shudder.
- Balok in the Star Trek: The Original Series episode "The Corbomite Maneuver".
- The lion from The Teletubbies, especially when he says "Where is THE BEAR?!!!"
- Breaking Bad has a good example of this in the Season 4 finale, when Gus is caught in an explosion. He calmly exits the crumbling room, adjusting his tie and looking perfectly fine, until the camera pans around to reveal half his face missing, hollowed eye socket staring blankly, teeth bared through the distinct lack of cheek. Exploded flesh adorning his shoulder. Incidentally the name of the episode is "Face Off". Heh.
- In Supernatural, one who has sold their soul to a Crossroads Demon and whose time is nearly up begins seeing Nightmare Faces on anyone they encounter as a reminder that their own death is coming soon. We see these from the POV of these people a couple times, twice in "Crossroad Blues,", and again later at the very end of season 3 where we see Sam from Dean's POV, whose appearance briefly takes on a Nightmare Face.
- Other episodes also often have the various Monster of the Week cases briefly take one at some point, usually when being confronted by Sam and Dean.
- In the Twilight Zone episode The Masks, a dying man promises his entire fortune to his daughter and her family if they will wear grotesque masks for one evening. When the man dies at midnight, after telling them they have earned their inheritance, they remove the masks and find their faces have permanently taken on the mask's features◊.
- Red Eye With Greg Gutfeld gives us this.
- Aphex Twin's "Rubber Johnny". In fact, Aphex Twin has played this trope for Surreal Humor and Surreal Horror (sometimes both at the same time) in most of his music videos.
- The last scene in Lady Gaga's video "Alejandro" in which the film burns up from the eyes and mouth out.
- In the music video for Madonna's "Bedtime Story", there’s a part near the end where Madonna's mouth has been replaced by an eye and her eyes by two mouths.◊ Do NOT click on that image! You have been warned.
- In the music video for "Mama," by Genesis, when Phil Collins laughs. Also done in live performances of the song as well.
- "In the Air Tonight" does this as well. When the drum solo kicks in, Collins' black-and-white visage suddenly transforms into a blazing, brightly-colored, and VERY angry thermographic image.
- Soundgarden's video for Black Hole Sun. It has this suburban neighborhood of creepy smiling people whose faces very suddenly become horrifyingly distorted.
- Barry Godber's cover artwork from King Crimson's In the Court of the Crimson King, helpfully reproduced on the band's TV Tropes page..
- The official music video (not the earlier fan-made one) for "Kids" by MGMT, featuring deformed rubber masks with grotesque protruding eyes and tongues. Then you notice that a small child is crying and reacting to these horror faces.
- Half of the creepy images hosted on the Creepypasta Wiki. Especially the "GO TO SLEEP" one.
- Let us not forget about any variation of the smiledog found on that site either [shudder]
- In Marble Hornets, near the end of Entry #22, and in one of totheark's video responses.
- Speaking of Marble Hornets, the Observer from Tribe Twelve has a pretty nightmarish face at the end of COMECLOSER.
- Villains in the original Dick Tracy newspaper comic were notoriously Nightmare Faced. This waned at about the time Chester Gould suffered a Creator Breakdown, but has returned with the new artist, Dick Locher, who absolutely loves this trope.
- The Rahkshi from BIONICLE. Averted in the toys themselves (due to the limitations of toy design), but it is used in full force in the movie Mask of Light to unleash pure nightmare fuel on other characters (and the viewers, naturally).
- The Barakki also count. They all have these freakishly bulbous, emotionless eyes that seemingly stare into nothingness. Pridak takes the cake, however, with his butt-ugly Slasher Smile, and what looks like blood splashed all over his face (which is actually his natural coloring, according to Word Of God).
- Makuta, being a Shape Shifter-race, are full of examples, and many of the fan-built Contest Winner Cameo figures have these as well.
- The Grunt and the Brute from Amnesia The Dark Descent. The Brute pretty much doesn't even have a face, though you can find an eye and some teeth in there...◊ And the Grunt isn't much better. He doesn't really have a jaw, it's just a flappy bit of skin. Well, that's an understatement...◊
- Essentially, every single splicer in the BioShock series seems to have a gruesome, mutated face, sometimes hidden by a New Year's party mask, their mutation either thanks to their rigorous splicing or Dr. Steinman's attempts to fix the effects of said splicing, and it certainly didn't help that Steinman had his own ideas of beauty...
- Left 4 Dead has the Boomer, the Smoker, the Tank, the Spitter, the Jockey, and the Charger. Boomer's face is coated in bile-filled pustles. Smoker's face is laden with tumors and, in the sequel, extra tongues. The Tank is missing his lower jaw. The Spitter has her neck elongated, and most of her lips burned off. Jockey's face is twisted into that of a constant manic glee, with his lips torn off. And the Charger's face looks like someone took a hammer to it multiple times.
- The sprites for Abobo in the NES Double Dragon games give him one of these. They're clearly based on the same character's arcade sprites, but the head is enlarged and the contrast in shading almost makes him look like he's made of rock. In addition, his handlebar mustache looks enough like a severely distorted mouth that some have mistakenly confused it for one.
- Giygas from EarthBound doesn't have one of these — He is one of these.
- Unused enemies in Mother 3 feature this: creatures with no eyes and a wide open mouth which, simillarly to Giygas, act as a background. These have been flying around YouTube for a while.
- Yume Nikki gave us Uboa and Face, among many other things that could also easily fit this trope.
- Face, by the way, is full-screen. And once the scene starts, you cannot manually exit it.note When it does end, you wake up.
- The Kaibutsu in the Fan Sequel .Flow also count...
- What about the extremely low-poly face of Andross in the original Star Fox (later brought back as an Assist trophy in Super Smash Brothers Brawl)?
- In Fatal Frame 4: Mask of Lunar Eclipse, the final stage of the Getsuyuu Syndrome is Blooming, which doesn't directly affect the victim's face itself but somehow makes it appear horrifically blurred and distorted. Oh, and the people who die of this syndrome become ghosts, and anyone who just looks at the face will suffer the same fate.
- Silent Hill 3. The final boss. It's just so wrong on a subconscious level, because the skin has a strange netlike pattern to it. Also, it never opens its eyes.
- The Aristocrat◊ from Silent Hill Downpour. You meet him for only a few seconds at the end of the terrifying train ride at Devil's Pit Mine, but he will most likely remain etched into your mind's eye for quite some time: a disembodied piece of flesh draped on the cave walls, wearing High-Class Glass. Fancy.
- The enemies in Rule of Rose are this. FUCK.◊
- In Eversion, the smiling block faces you see at the start of the game become less and less happy as you evert into deeper worlds. In World X-5, they have blank, terrified expressions with empty eye sockets. In X-6, they're disfigured, as if they're melting.
- The Psycho Heads from (SNES) Final Fantasy V. They are floating heads with the faces ripped off, with long, pink tongues sticking out. (shudders)
- The ending of Final Fantasy VIII shows the main character, Squall, with no face.
- One of the bosses in The Legend Of Zelda Twilight Princess, (Blizzeta), has her face flip around backwards to show a Nightmare Face.
- In Touhou Labyrinth, Alice's boss sprite is apparently a reference to a very obscure game. For the rest of us who don't know about that (and is challenging her for the first time), her face can be quite startling to look at.
- Wario in the infamous commercial for Super Mario Land 2 Six Golden Coins. "Obey Wario, DESTROY MARIO!!!"
- The scary maze game.
- Also, screamers in general.
- Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter's Ryu and Bosch. Ryu for getting stabbed and beginning his transformation into Odjn, some sort of a super powered beast. Bosch, the one who stabs him, does it with a complete cold look without any emotion. And later when we realize he's not quite dead, he has more or less turned insane. Character designs really helps boosting the fear.
- In Corpse Party, many of the evil spirits sport these. At times, the victims' reaction faces can veer into this, too, particularly in the manga.
- The Necromorphs from Dead Space. This is not surprising considering they are the remains of violently slaughtered corpses, reanimated and deformed by an alien virus. The concept art is little better (perhaps even worse since every little horrible detail is layed bare for all unlucky viewers to see). Don't look at it if you don't have a strong stomach.
- Dead Space 2 throws their face literally into yours, with the opening showing someone within kissing distance of Isaac turning into one of those face-exploder-type slashers, while still alive.
- Lady Tsepish from Kings Quest VII The Princeless Bride, whose face is apparently so horrifying that it'll instantly kill Valanice/Rosella if they look upon her.
- During the final boss battle at the end of Super Mario World, after taking a certain amount of damage, Bowser will actually temporarily fly away in his Koopa Clown Car and towards the camera very fast, and we get to see a closeup of the Clown Car's face!
- The Pokemon games have the move Scary Face, which is pretty much what it says on the tin: a scary glare that affects the opponent's speed. You actually see a cartoon scary face on the screen when it's used.
- Mean Look, which keeps a Pokemon from fleeing, may also count.
- Phanto of Super Mario Bros. 2, in contrast to its counterpart in Doki Doki Panic, which just looks like an expressionless mask.
- Venom Myotismon suffers from this on Digimon: Digital Card Battle after being possessed by A. Most notably, an eye pops out of its Domino Mask. Funny thing is, his mask conceals his eyes behind a yellow film, so the eye popped out through the film. Lest the kids sleep tonight.
- Dota 2 has quite a lot of examples with the Dire heroes being the biggest offenders... Let's see, here's Bane◊ and Faceless Void◊ guilty of the Eyeless Face trope, but Lifestealer◊ and Doom Bringer◊ are not pleasant sights either, and while we're at it, Undying◊ is pretty scary as well. But the crowner Nightmare Face definitely goes to Night Stalker◊.
- All the Shibito and Yamibito monsters from the Forbidden Siren series. Hideous mutations, Tears of Blood, ax craziness, Slasher Smiles, implacability, invulnerability, Shining powers, insane laughter and overwhelming bursts of Uncanny Valley are not good combinations AT ALL! Doesn't help that images of real human faces were captured from eight different angles and superimposed onto the character models.
- Slappy from Dead Rising 2. Especially his death.
- Aran Ryan from Punch-Out!! Wii gets some really unnerving close up facial expressions showcasing his insanity. Bald Bull and Mr. Sandman could also qualify.
- Darkstalkers gives us Demitri's smile as he remarks on the humans suffering. It is full of dozens of sharp teeth. To make manners worse, all of those teeth are rotten.
- Uzaza from Gyossait is a giant leering face with a permanent Slasher Smile and covered in red wires/tentacles. The game also have two mysterious horrifying faces that very briefly flash by you.
- This◊ is from Splatterhouse 3. If you fail to save Jennifer in time, be prepared to see one of the most nightmarish faces ever, on a FREAKING SEGA GENESIS.
- Comedic In-Universe example is Black Mage. Let's just say he doesn't show his face for a reason.
- DMFA's background material gave us this. Oh Lordy. Gee, I wonder what that clan feeds on...
- Some people in Goblins are very good at this. Very good.
- In Stardroids here. Hope you weren't planning on sleeping tonight...
- Return X is rather skilled at these...as seen here...
- Homestuck has a few. Particularly notable is Jack Noir, who... holy shit.◊
- Romantically Apocalyptic's main protagonist, "Zee Captain" has a face like this, apparently. In issue 23, he confronts the aliens that abducted Snippy after OWNING one of them with a slice of cake(!) and forces them to gaze upon his Angry face, removing his gas mask in front of them. We don't see, but the alien's reaction says a lot!
- A short Korean webcomic that will ensure you will never sleep ever again. Your mileage may NOT vary. Just scroll down...
- Frankly, it's not the face that's going to freak you out. It's just a blood covered, but otherwise normal face (though it does pull an Exorcism and twist around 180 degrees). It's the jump scares in an otherwise static strip that'll get you.
- Correction: It had sound. That is NOT just static... this troper's heart is still pounding, and she only had the audio (thank you 'shrink window' button...).
- Gunnerkrigg Court has a couple of instances...Zimmy's already a little creepy, given she's got some kind of black clouds where her eyes should be. Then this happens in the middle of a psychic jaunt Astral Projection into an unconscious Antimony's subconscious.
- Schlock Mercenary. Tagii is not happy about being cut off from her external senses by Thurl, and as a result of her treatment takes up a far more ghoulish appearance that reflects her condition.
- In Commander Kitty, Zenith picks up this kind of expression when she realizes Nin Wah is present. She shows off a subtler yet simultaneously far creepier one when she's about to disembowel Ace and company.
- Some of the scarier vanity plates sometimes used these. Some notable ones include the "VID Mask" and the Klasky-Csupo Robot (or SSF).
- Most if not all the pics from Creepy Pasta Wiki will want to make you sleep with a gun under your pillow.
- Korean singer Hang Mioku, a cosmetic surgery addict, ended up having so many procedures (at the height of her obsession, she injected cooking oil into her skin) that her face ended up massively enlarged and disfigured beyond recognition. You don't want pictures. But in case you do, here's one◊.
- Various cancers and skin diseases that affect the face can result in this. Such as tumors, which, if left unchecked, can grow to the point where a part of a person's face is swollen to the size of a balloon.
- Not just nightmare face but nightmare head and brain too: a mistake in the womb around day 22 of pregnancy can result in a condition called anencephaly, where the baby is born alive, but without a brain. Don't search for it, the image will scar you for life.
- Related is a condition called holoprosencephaly...well basically another name for this is 'Cyclopia'. Yeah. Guess what it does. It results from the brain not splitting into two hemispheres; Cyclopia is the worst form, but the simplest of cleft palates is the least...
- Joseph Merrick - You might know him as "The Elephant Man". Tragically, he was treated as a freak and exploited by freakshow owners and doctors despite simply being born with a terrible illness.
- Huang Chuncai, also known as "China's Elephant Man" Think Joseph Merrick to 10th power. And that includes woobie points as well.
- Charla Nash, the victim of a domesticated animal attack, had most of her face as well as her right hand ripped off when her friend's pet chimpanzee mauled her in 2009. The result is extremely hard to look at; hell even her operators needed counseling after seeing her damage!
- Raymond Robinson, more commonly known as the Green Man or Charlie No Face was disfigured by an electrical line accident when he was eight. He was never able to go out during the day, but went for frequent walks at night. He was also the subject of urban legend around his home in Pennsylvania.
- Juliana Wetmore, as a result of an extreme form of Treacher Collins syndrome. She has a face, but it's not supported by bone. And she has normal intelligence too.
- Darren Bigley lost his eyes and most of his face when he was mauled by a bear in 2003. Now that he has fully (well, almost, he still lacks eyes) recovered, he looks pretty okay though. Heck, he looks like a normal, even handsome, guy when he wears his sunglasses.
- In a similar, but more horrifying vein, Chrissy Steltz got a prostetic face (well, eyes and nose). She previously wore a sleeping mask when she went out.
- Denise Wagoner, who was blinded and severely disfigured in a DUI accident. The EMT on the scene remarked that her face looked like "bloody hamburger" after the crash, and that's pretty much exactly what it was. Don't google image search this.
- In hindsight, it sounds eerily similar to the case of the "hamburger lady" described in a certain Throbbing Gristle song, which was based on a real life car crash/burn victim.
- Jacqui Saburido was also disfigured in a drunk driving accident, but is even more of a woobie because, unlike Wagoner, the accident wasn't her fault.
- Chase No Face, a cat who looks like someone took a blowtorch to her eyes and nose. She was hit by a car and survived, but her nose, whiskers, and most of the fur on her face could not be repaired by doctors, leaving nothing but pink flesh left where her fur was.
- Jose Mestre, the "Bad Face of Lisboa"(according to rotten.com), who had his face taken over be a hemangioma/AVM. Rumor has it that he died during the surgery... However, as everyone knows, rumors are unreliable. He lived. What he looks like under the bandages has yet to be seen.
- There's been at least one TV documentary that showed his face after surgery.
- Look up "keloid" (a scar that starts absorbing collagen, so it gets wicked huge. commonly forms from radiation exposure) on google images.
- Dear God, Pete Burns. Even the botched lip job that nearly cost him his life didn't stop his plastic surgery addiction.
- This video demonstrates how our perception of faces can be toyed with.
- Something is very, very wrong with Newt Gingrich's wife Callista◊ in a recent photo.
- Google image search "Ronald Poppo chewed face" if you dare.
- Harlequin baby - a baby with a extremely rare disease where the skin is hard and cracked, and the eye sockets are full of blood where the eyeballs should be. They also have no nose or ears. Don't look this up.
- The "gueules cassées" ("broken faces"), World War I veterans disfigured because of heavy injuries in the face. Trying to treat their injuries contributed to the advance of esthetic surgery.