"Koizumi's cheerful smile pisses me off every time I see it."The exact opposite of Perpetual Frowner. This is a character who, no matter what, is never seen without a smile of some kind. A Stepford Smiler would be a sub-trope, one who smiles because that's all they can do to keep from breaking. A Cat Smile or Cheshire Cat Grin can also be their perpetual expression. A rarely explored Reality Ensues version would depict a character with a lot of saliva in their mouth, because it's honestly impossible (or very hard) to swallow one's own saliva while literally always smiling, making even a genuinely sweet smile go from sweet and charming to potentially terrifying or at the very least disgusting. A Perpetual Smiler's smile can change, and the emotions behind it can be literally anything, so long as there is something that can be called a 'smile' on their face. Usually, though, this smile is pleasant and cheerful, or at least calm, and often, the feeling behind it is genuine, so The Unsmile doesn't usually appear. Compare to Glasgow Grin, where the smile is ear-to-ear and usually inflicted by cutting. As a Super-Trope of those listed above, all examples of them should be sorted into their respective categories. This page is only for examples of this trope who do NOT fit into the other perpetual-smile categories.
open/close all folders
- Jack the Clown in the "Jack In The Box" TV commercials, who's been appearing as a living, ball-faced humanoid since 1995. It disappears when he's particularly perturbed, though.
- Smilin' Bob from the Enzyte commercials. His smile is particularly creepy...
- Not to mention his wife's...
- There were a series of Medibank commercials, featuring spokespeople who smiled all the time. At the end of the commercials, their smiles would become bigger through CGI, which would imply that their normal smiles were their neutral expression...
- The Burger King mascot The King whom many viewers have found very creepy because of it.
Anime & Manga
- Sendo from Slam Dunk is considered as this.
- Kamui from Gintama. Even while killing everyone during the Yoshiwara arc.
- Anthy from Revolutionary Girl Utena almost always wears a placid, vapid smile. This, in addition to her Dissonant Serenity, is noted by other characters to be creepy and unsettling.
- Kasumi Tendo from Ranma ˝ is never seen without a lovely smile, and doesn't seem to have Stepford Smiler tendencies.
- Despite the fact that he really doesn't understand emotions, Sai from Naruto is a Perpetual Smiler. He has reasons for this though, which do not fall into the other categories.
- Wolfgang Grimmer from Monster doesn't even stop smiling as he bleeds to death. He is a pleasant person but the smile is just something he was trained to do. At one point he recalls how his wife left him because he couldn't stop smiling even when his son died.
- Konata Izumi from Lucky Star has a Cat Smile that, while not quite perpetual, is her default expression.
- Raquel from Scrapped Princess is perennially cheerful no matter what's going on.
- Itsuki Koizumi from Haruhi Suzumiya.
- Gin Ichimaru (pictured above) and Sousuke Aizen from Bleach.
- Mana from Yu-Gi-Oh!, more in the anime than in the manga.
- God from Oyasumi Punpun
- Elmer C. Albatross of Baccano! is always smiling and happy. He'd be a Messianic Archetype were it not for the fact that there are times where one shouldn't be smiling and jokey, so he just comes across as creepy. Oh, and he's friends with Huey Laforet.
- Professor Souichi Tomoe of Sailor Moon S. Heck, for most of the series, the only thing we ever see of his face are his Scary Shiny Glasses and his big, open-mouthed smile.
- Jail Scaglietti of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS is another perpetually happy fellow. Impending defeat and imprisonment couldn't even make him drop his smile.
- Mahou Sensei Negima!
- Kaede is always smiling mysteriously, to go along with her Eyes Always Shut. She isn't actually very mysterious as a character, having no secrets to hide, she just looks it. Unless she's so good at hiding secrets that we don't even suspect them.
- Albireo Imma a.k.a. Ku:Nel Sanders also has a perpetual Cheshire Cat Grin, although he's generally much more suspicious than Kaede.
- Ryuk from Death Note. It's creepy. He only broke it once when Light snapped at him after offering the eyes after meeting L.
- D.Gray-Man has the Millennium Earl, who smiles even when he's pissed.
- Kousaka from Genshiken, always has the same expression, no matter what takes place.
- Xellos from Slayers.
- Takeshi Yamamoto from Katekyo Hitman Reborn!, for the most part. When he stops smiling though, you had better start hoping you can run faster than the baseball player, because you're about to get screwed over epically because Yamamoto is ticked off.
- Pride and Ling Yao from Fullmetal Alchemist
- Ariel from Is This a Zombie?
- Mikako from Heaven's Lost Property.
- Ling-Ling from Rosario + Vampire. Justified, since she's already dead, and thus has nothing left to worry about.
- Ojisan of Yokohama Kaidashi Kikou is always grinning.
- Thailand and Spain from Axis Powers Hetalia.
- Kio from Loveless.
- One Piece
- Kokoro always has a huge, slightly creepy smile, regardless of her actual feelings at the time.
- Pirate Captain Urouge the Fallen Monk always sports a large grin on his face, even in dire situations.
- Koala. Until Fisher Tiger broke down her Stepford Smiler façade, it was forced because of her trauma as a former slave, but after the event, it became genuine.
- Wanze the ramen chef is always smiling even when he's scared or angry, he has the same goofy grin for almost every emotion he displays.
- Hao Asakura from Shaman King. And his twin Yoh, to a lesser extent (his smile is more genuine).
- Misaki in The Pet Girl of Sakurasou; her smile will only drop when her relationship with Jin is brought into question.
- Seta Soujirou from Rurouni Kenshin always has a pleasantly angelic smile in his face, even when slashing your throat with a katana.
- The Legend of Sun Knight: The Sun Knight is never seen without a smile on his face... Even if he really, really hates the recipient. He's very good at making it look natural, however.
- Gensei Kihara from A Certain Scientific Railgun, because he has NO remorse at all for his incredibly depraved actions.
- Nightmare from Kirby of the Stars. The only exception was when Tiff pulls out the Warp Star in Kirby's dream.
- Saya from Servant × Service smiles 80% of the time even when angry.
- Shalnark in Hunter × Hunter is always smiling, even as he's mercilessly mowing down Mafia goons. He seems to be an an almost perpetual state of calm happiness. The only thing known to offend him is having to use an ability that makes him lose control of himself, as it renders him unable to experience the thrill of killing people.
- Shokugeki no Soma has Satoshi Isshiki, a very easygoing party animal who is rarely seen without a wide smile across his face.
- This is a characteristic of sculpture from the Archaic period. One notable example is the "Dying Warrior from the Temple of Aphaia", which depicts a wounded man pulling an arrow from his chest...with a cheerful smile.
- The Joker, obviously (his appearance was based partly on the Laughing Man). So perpetual is his scary grin that if he ever stops grinning for an extended period of time, it's like his version of the Broken Smile, and it's a sure sign that either something has very definitely gone wrong with him (more so than usual, that is), or the proverbial crap has gotten seriously real.
- Also from the DCU:
- The Creeper.
- There's also Mad Harriet who's smile is quite similar to the Joker.
- For the first portion of his appearance in Transmetropolitan, Presidental candidate Gary Callahan is one of these. That's why they call him "The Smiler" (also to contrast with incumbent "The Beast"). He rapidly loses the quality once he starts dealing with Spider Jerusalem.
- Mojo, from the marvel universe, has a perpetual grin aided by wires stretched across his face and teeth much too large for his mouth. Though he cackles and giggles constantly anyway.
- Alcman, the Wilq's sidekick, is always drawn with a wide smile on his face and closed eyes, no matter how dangerous or confusing is the situation.
- Calvin briefly becomes one of these prior to the introduction of the Time Pauser in Calvin and Hobbes: The Series.
- Cedric Diggory in A Very Potter Musical.
- Shinigami Kira in Death Note fanfic Apples Equals Cyanide Equals Light has a small, frozen smirk on his marble face.
- Doctor Strange in Child of the Storm seems to have small Grin of Audacity on his face at pretty much all times. Since he's the best chessmaster in a setting practically defined by its colossal Gambit Pileup, it's justified.
- Chester from Pacific: World War II U.S. Navy Shipgirls is this due to always being in a cheerful mood, even after accidentally hitting Arizona with Maury's shield..
- Most of the toys from the Toy Story series are this in their 'toy' mode.
- Most of the hero characters in the Rankin Bass Stop Motion Christmas specials had built-in smiles, which made it unsettling when they had to be angry or sad.
- Ed the hyena from The Lion King is always smiling. The only instances he doesn't smile is when he's trying to warn Banzai and Shenzi that Simba and Nala are escaping and later when hears Scar outing them as the reasons why he's evil.
- He also cried in an episode of the TV series.
- "Cindy", "Bianca", "Hime", "Iria", and "Zade" from Little Princess School for some reason never. stop. smiling.
Films — Live-Action
- Michael Sheen's portrayal of Tony Blair in The Deal (2003) and The Queen covers just about the whole range of possible smiles, to the point where it starts to feel like his teeth are following you around the room. Which is Truth in Television.
- Atom in Real Steel. His face (if he has one) is obscured by a metallic mesh that only shows his eyes, but there are seams in the mesh that resemble a nose ridge and a smile. It helps highlight his child-like appearance, which is most noticeable when his Shadow Function is activated.
- The Smile Man, short movie about man who damages his spine cord and makes his his face smile forever.
- Martin Freeman's character in Wild Target continually flashes a big smile at whomever he's talking to. Since he's a contract killer, this is slightly unsettling as well as annoying.
- The Man Who Laughs (L'Homme qui rit) is a man who literally cannot stop smiling as he has no cheeks (he was kidnapped by gypsies as a baby, who mutilated him like this to make money showing him off).
- Alice's Adventures in Wonderland has the Cheshire Cat and his trademark grin.
- Ella in Sunny Ella, though what kind of smile it is changes depending on whose point of view we're reading.
- Jon Masters from Dale Brown's books.
"The bastard never stops smiling, too. You notice that? Always with the damned grin on his puss. I don't trust somebody who grins all the time—it usually means they found someone else to put the blame on."
- The Hunger Games: Caesar Flickerman.
- The Gentlemen from the Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode "Hush".
- Jonas Quinn of Stargate SG-1 is a prime example. He tends to smile when the team is flying through space or he encounters something fascinating for the first time. This is often lampshaded by O'Neill.
- Scorpina from Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers was this (as was, by default, Lami, her Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger counterpart) despite being one of the more serious villains (by MMPR standards, anyway). It was obvious that she genuinely enjoyed fighting the Power Rangers.
- This was more Ami Kawai than Scorpina. Ami herself is a very sweet, kind, and warm lady who herself is always smiling, who is one of the few former Sentai actors to happily associate herself with the series, even 20+ years later. It also says a lot about her acting abilities that she can effectively play a ruthless villainess despite a kind, sweet, always-smiling appearance without causing any cognitive dissonance.
- Jerome Valeska from Gotham. Then again, considering who he is likely to become, this is to be expected.
- While he's capable of being serious and stoic when he has to, especially when dealing with tough topics as mass shootings, Trevor Noah is always smiling or maintaining a positive attitude.
- The Piraka and their whole species in BIONICLE.
- LEGO minifigures, usually.
- The older kind more so; newer ones (from around the mid-to-late nineties on) have plenty of frowns, neutral expressions, and other miscellaneous emotions to perpetually display. Some of their heads can be turned around for different expressions.
- Within that, Flex from Alpha Team is said to always smile "even when danger threatens".
- A Robot Chicken sketch lampshaded this to creepy effect by depicting a spaceship accident resulting in the astronauts inside burning, their faces still stuck in Perpetual Smiler mode while screams were overdubbed. Despite the sketch's Black Comedy, it crosses into nightmarish, especially when one of the firemen yells "Their faces! Their horrible faces!" before another cut to them smiling/screaming.
- The Sunami half of Su/Ka, even when denouncing the Tag Team and proclaiming it was All About Me following "The Reason You Suck" Speech from the Ballard Brothers, even while boasting about how he was going to beat the rest of the Vendetta Pro roster to prove he was not just another smiling face.
- Hiroyo Matsumoto has the philosophy of always trying to live happy, and of beating people's asses while happy.
- Since he won his first title in NWA Vendetta Pro, Ricky Ruffin smiled as much as possible.
- Henry from Fire Emblem Awakening is always smiling, whether he's helping a wounded dog, practicing magic, thinking about murdering people, drinking blood, murdering people, sacrificing people for his spells, or raising an army of the undead to attack civilians, he's always smiling. He's just a happy guy. At least, that's what he wants you to think.
- The Happy Mask Salesman from The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time and The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask combines this with Eyes Always Shut unless you press his Berserk Button.
- The shape-shifting space creature, Jenova, from Final Fantasy VII. After being excavated by scientists, "she" is locked in a gnarled human appearance for several years, with an empty smile visible beneath her helmet.
- The Kid from I Wanna Be the Guy is forever grinning ecstatically, in contrast to what one might expect from someone who is rarely more than a few seconds from death.
- Maxwell in Scribblenauts is always smiling, even when he's getting eaten alive or otherwise mauled.
- Evil Otto in the early 1980s arcade game Berzerk, who is basically a smiley button, who comes onscreen to chase after the player and to electrocute him, passing through walls and destroying robots along the way. On top of that, he's also invulnerable. Designer Alan MacNeil put Evil Otto in the game because he hates smiley buttons.
- Evil Otto also appears in the game sequel Frenzy, but he loses that smile when the player can now shoot him down.
- The Sorrow of Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater is always seen smiling, despite his GOD DAMNED NAME.
- Inazuma Eleven's 3D character models have fixed expressions. Characters who smile will smile even though the ball hits them. Masaru Gojou always has a rapist's face, and Hijikata will never stop grinning.
- Miranda in Mass Effect rarely drops the grin she wears. Even when it looks like the suicide mission will become just that, she still looks happy.
- In the third game, with the change in the graphics engine, her smiles appear in a more natural frequency, but she still smiles more often not.
- Many Pokémon such as Wooper and Sunflora are almost always smiling in the 3D games (Exceptions typically for when they attack or get hit in battle or if you upset them in X/Y's Pokemon Amie feature).
- Wynaut is literally this in series canon according to its Ruby Dex entry. One has to look at its tail to determine its mood.
- Emmet in Pokémon Black and White.
- Many Pokémon such as Wooper and Sunflora are almost always smiling in the 3D games (Exceptions typically for when they attack or get hit in battle or if you upset them in X/Y's Pokemon Amie feature).
- Dimentio in Super Paper Mario.
- Yoshis from the Super Mario Bros. and Yoshi's Island games are always seen happy unless they are injuried.
- Poppy Bros from the Kirby series has this to imply a Mad Bomber vibe.
- In Star Wars: The Old Republic, Consular companion Felix Iresso is rarely without a smile. His maximum affection achievement is even called "The Cheerful Soldier." Assigned to Hoth with a ton of jumpy privates and a mission he was likely to set up to fail? He's not complaining, the job needs to be done. In the middle of a firefight with a bunch of Imperials and outnumbered three-to-one? "Broke a sweat on that one." he says. Career stalls as he's bounced from rear-end outpost to rear-end outpost? Beats being in an Imperial prison. Missing a week's time from being in an Imperial prison and having a Sith holocron forcibly downloaded into his head? Well, at least he can live to tell the tale. If he stops being laid-back and cheerful, you have a big problem on your hands.
- Hazama, Gin Ichimaru's Expy from BlazBlue seems to be this.
- Sans and Papyrus in Undertale are always grinning, the former in a laid-back, vaguely smug fashion and the latter in an eternally cheerful, goofy kind of way. It helps that they're skeletons. During a Genocide run they even smile if you kill them. Papyrus because he feels your life is going down the wrong way and he wants you to know that you can be a better person, even if you don't think you can, and to that end he never lets his encouraging smile falter and Sans because, at this point, you've killed everyone he knows and love.
- Claptrap from Borderlands 2. While he doesn't have a mouth, his voice is programmed to always sound happy, even though he's depressed.
- Leo Shishigami, protagonist of Rose Guns Days Season 1, never drops neither his smile, nor his laid-back attitude. The very few times he does, you know he is really serious.
- Trudy of General Protection Fault is one, combined with Bitch in Sheep's Clothing. As such, her "Nega" counterpart is a Perpetual Frowner.
- Coyote from Gunnerkrigg Court, who has a near-perpetual Cheshire Cat Grin. Even on the rare occasions when it vanishes, though, his upbeat attitude never does.
- The Caped Crustacean from Beyond the Canopy seems to have a grin permanently on his face. As it turns out, he's just wearing a smiling mask.
- Smiling Guy from Power Nap, who smiles even as he is kicked out of the way and his desk set on fire.
- Alastor and KayCee from Zoophobia are never, not ever seen without some sort of insane grin on their faces.
- June is always smiling, regardless of the situation.
- Opeo manages this to a lesser extent; even though he's VERY accident prone, he tries to keep a sunny attitude about it.
- In The Dragon Doctors, Sarin fits this mold quite well.
- Godslave's Blacksmith girl always has a smile on her face, in contrast to her Perpetual Frowner job partner. This may be her reaction to his antics, though.
- The Comics Curmudgeon describes TJ from Luann's smile as a death-rictus.
- 80's Dan is almost always smiling and cheerful, especially when he's taken a good hit of cocaine.
- Tattletale of Worm is described as always having a foxlike grin.
- Doctor Javolt cannot stop smiling due to nerve damage.
- In Void Domain the necromancer Sawyer is never seen without a Slasher Smile on his face.
- Mr. Winkle from the Super Mario Logan series Bowser Junior's 1st Grade! is always cheerful and authentic about the situation, even when he's about to get arrested by a down-to-earth police officer.
- A number of the Mr. Men and Little Misses, but especially Mr. Tickle, Mr. Happy, and Little Miss Sunshine.
- The eponymous Ruby Gloom since she always looks on the bright side — in direct contrast to her aptly-named friend Misery.
- Phineas and Ferb
- In the cartoon of Where's Waldo?, Waldo almost always smiles.
- The Joo Dees from Avatar: The Last Airbender are brainwashed to do this.
- Nick from Invader Zim. The happiness probe may be involved.
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic has Pinkie Pie, who is always smiling save for a few... notable exceptions.
- The season 5 premiere takes place in a small village where ponies are forced by Starlight Glimmer to keep unnatural smiles.
- In Adventures of the Galaxy Rangers, Zozo is a very cheerful and laid back guy, even in the middle of a brawl with guys twice his size. It's not like he can't stop smiling, it just takes a lot for him to choose not to.
- Taz-Mania: Whatever he's actually feeling, Bull Gator is, in verbiage and tone, almost invariably cheerful and collected about the situation. Even when he's facing down a Tasmanian Devil who regards mauling him as good, clean, Sunday-afternoon fun.
- In Thomas the Tank Engine, the title character kept his grin throughout the whole entire episode of "Thomas And Trevor".
- Otto from Time Squad is this. Even when he gets sad or angry, he ends up bouncing back up eventually.
- Kit Fisto from Star Wars: The Clone Wars always has a bit of a smile on his face, making his actual smile a rather big cheesy grin.
- The Road Runner virtually always wears a carefree smile. Not simply a matter of a bird's bill being immobile, as Daffy Duck and Tweety Bird can both attest.
- Ms. Frizzle from The Magic School Bus is almost always smiling and enthusiastic, even when she and the class are in precarious situations during their field trips.
- Dr. Paula "Hutch" Hutchison in Rocko's Modern Life.
- Gretchen from Recess (partially due to her large buck teeth) fits a rarely explored Reality Ensues version of this trope as she has a very pronounced lisp or some other kind of speech impediment that indicates excessive saliva.
- The default expression of Beavis from Beavis and Butt-Head is a vacant smile. While watching Henry Rollins' music video for the song "Liar", Butt-Head says that he has a cool smile. Beavis then says "Yeah, I've got a cool smile too, check this out. *beat* See?"
- Freaky Fred from Courage the Cowardly Dog has the creepiest smile that seems very immutable. His personality doesn't help either.
- Bill Cipher from Gravity Falls has no mouth in his pyramid form, but his affable demeanor suggests this. When he possesses Dipper's body and gains a mouth, it stays in a cheery grin most of the time.
- The Ice Dancers couple from Total Drama - The Ridonculous Race. Both smile constantly, rather creepily. Their justification is that the cameras can pop up anytime.
- This is a symptom of the Angelman Syndrome, a genetic disorder characterized by development delay, speech impediment, movement or balance disorder, and frequent laughter and smiling.
- A running theme of the 2012 United States presidential debates. In the first debate, Mitt Romney smiled constantly and was complimented for his confident body language, while Barack Obama was roundly criticized for his annoyed and detached expression. During the vice presidential debates, Joe Biden noticeably made an effort to gain lost ground by smiling broadly throughout the debate and laughing frequently. Although some criticized his excess, he was roundly considered to have won the debate. In the second presidential debate, Obama smiled confidently far more often, obviously in response to previous criticism.
- Judah P. Benjamin, Jewish Senator and Secretary of State of the Confederate States of America, was almost always photographed with a smug little smirk. Because it was so unusual in the 19th century to purposefully smile in photographs, this was apparently his default expression.
- Colonel (ret.) Gail Halvorsen, USAF. And HOW! In every single picture of this guy, from 1948 to 2012, he's wearing a huge, ridiculous smile. Definitely justified in that it was his idea to drop candy on Berlin during the famous Airlift.
- This will involuntarily happen to a lot of people when out in the bright sunlight as a consequence of squinting hard against the sun.