A Camera Trick
where the camera is placed directly over the actor, pointing down, while the actor looks up into the camera or at the sky overhead and screams. For extra hamtacularity
, the camera may even be spinning
or panning upward.
This can be done to show intense anguish in the character, implying that they are screaming at the sky because there is nothing on the planet to hold responsible, possibly cursing some deity
. This is especially likely if they are screaming phrases rather than pure noise.
If the cause for this is as simple as running out of Cheesy snacks
, the trope immediately becomes comedic.
Showing something like this from the front
results in a Volumetric Mouth
. See also Big "NO!"
, The Scream
, Say My Name
, and Death Wail
. Often accompanied by Milking the Giant Cow
and Smite Me, O Mighty Smiter
. Do not confuse with Skyward Sword
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Anime and Manga
- Gundam Seed Destiny: Shinn's entire family has just died, and the opening hasn't even played. Insert multi-angled scream of anguish. And again when Stellar dies. Poor guy.
- Combined with Say My Name in Umineko no Naku Koro ni's second arc, at a point where Battler's kind of gone to the end of his rope. "BEATORIIIIIIIIIIIICHEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!"
- "KANEEEEEEEEEEEEDAAAAAAA!" "TETSUOOOOOOOOOOOOO!" "KANEEEEEEEEEDAAAAAAAAA!!!"
- Tiny Luffy (heartbreakingly) in One Piece ch.588: SABOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!
- In Bleach, Komamura does this ("AIZEN!!") after Tousen's death.
- Kenpachi does this after realizing he killed Unohana.
- Incidentally, Ichigo actually has a non-tragic one after he defeats Byakuya Kuchiki. When a greatly-wounded and worn-out Byakuya walks away and concedes that Ichigo had finally won, and that he wouldn't hunt down Rukia for execution anymore, Ichigo looks up to the sky while the camera pans up away from him, as he let's out a primal, victorious scream to the heavens. Justified, considering how far he'd come and what he had achieved.
- Fakir in Princess Tutu "AHIRUUUUUU!!!!!!"
- Several anime (Ranma ˝ springs to mind as an example) combine the Skyward Scream with some kind of reaction elsewhere, especially when the scream is either a curse (usually causing the subject to react, such as by sneezing) or a Battle Cry (in which case, someone may slip or accidentally break something).
- Wolfram von Bielefeld in the Wham Episode of Kyo Kara Maoh: his beloved king was last reported in this church which has since burnt down—but all anyone can find in the ruins is the lonely severed arm of the dedicated once-beloved brother he's been rejecting for years. Cue scream of frustration.
- Also cue Character Development. Like anything. It's also after this that he reverts to referring to Conrad by name, which he apparently hasn't done since he was a little kid and found out niisan was half human.
- "I don't wanna die. I don't wanna die. I don't wanna die. I don't want to die. I DON'T WANNA DIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIEEEEEEE!!!!!"
- Non angsty example in No6. Sion during the storm in episode 1.
- Happens an awful lot in InuYasha, mostly from the title character.
- A wordless variant happens in the second movie, complete with spinning camera.
- At the end of Arashino Yoru Ni, Gabu the wolf actually does this after he and his sheep friend Mei are now together again and that the Moon is rising right in front of them for the first time.
- Mitsunari in the Sengoku Basara movie. He's already had his This Is Unforgivable! rant, so he just screams.
- Transformers Cybertron: (after being soundly betrayed and imprisoned by his backstabbing second-in-command) Megatron: STARSCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAM!!!!!!
- Pushed Up to Eleven in Dragon Ball Z to the point you could instigate a Drinking Game! Notables:
- "HURRY, GOKU!!!"
- "YOU'RE DEAAAAAAAAAD!!!! WHEN I FIND YOU, I'LL KILL YOU!!!!" (Vegeta, realizing he's been duped out of getting the rest of the Dragon Balls by Krillin and Gohan, when they were inches away from him)
- And let's not forget this gem:
- MATSUDA, YOU IDIOOOOOOOOT!!!
- Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch blows the pants off this trope in the last episodes of the first season. LUCHIAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA
- Done for comedic effect in episode 4 of Lupin III: The Woman Called Fujiko Mine, when Oscar comes across Zenigata unconscious and covered in blood. Lupin had just sprayed fake blood all over the Inspector, and Oscar had inadvertently knocked him out by coming out of the trapdoor just as Lupin escaped.
- Haruka of Kotoura-san does this during the Downer Beginning in the Gray Rain of Depression when the mean old lady sends the stray cat to an animal shelter (effectively a death sentence in Japan). Made even more poignant since the scene itself becomes silent as the Grief Song swells over.
- Kagerou Project: One of these is performed by Mary, when Kuroha kills all of her friends at the end of each timeloop. They're usually drowned out by the background music, but that somehow makes it even more disturbing.
- Xena: Warrior Princess featured this once, with Xena, in the episode "The Ring".
Xena: ... who am I? WHO AM I?!?!
- Seinfeld parodied this three times. The first time was George yelling "KHAAAAAAN!" after realizing his life must be dedicated to the Susan Ross foundation.note The second time was Elaine yelling "SUUUUUUUUUUZIE!" after realizing her life must be dedicated to the Susie foundation, a fake character she initially made up to avoid troubles and later "killed" her to avoid exposure. The third time was George screaming "TWIIIIIIIIIX!!" after people ate up his candy lineup, which he set up to catch his candy's thief in a car dealership.
- The Klingon death ritual first seen in Star Trek: The Next Generation invokes this, roaring into the sky to warn the afterlife that a Klingon warrior is on their way.
- Jon Stewart does this a lot on The Daily Show, and was especially gratified when the scientist found to be supplying rogue regimes with nuclear technology was actually named A.Q. Khan. They once even subverted/failed to do the shot.
"How does a glissando make sense there? Am I introducing a toaster?"
- A great recent example was Stewart switching bodies with Justin Bieber. When they switched back, Bieber told Stewart, "Hope you don't mind the new tattoo."
Stewart: Did he say something about a tattoo? And why is my ass sore? *cut to screencap of Stewart's tattoo* '#neversaynever'?! *cut back to Stewart* BIEBEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEER!
- Duncan does this once in Highlander: The Series, when he screams Darius's name after finding his dead body.
- Like Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert of The Colbert Report also has engaged in this trope occasionally. ("MANILOWWWWWW!!!")
- Also "RAAAAAAAAAIIIIIIIIIINNNNN!!!"
- "THERE WILL BE REPRISALS FOR THIS! REPRISAAAAAAALS!"
- Along those same lines, who can forget Conan O'Brien's tortured scream... "BOOOLLTEEEENN!"
- And again, when he realizes he cannot have Rebecca Romijn-Stamos. "STAAAAUGH-MOS!"
- Wade in the first season finale of Sliders: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
- The whole process is described in Razorblade Sigh by Gamma Ray.
- Simple Plan's Untitled music video has the singer perform a skyward scream during, appropriately enough, the lyrics "I just wanna SCREEEEEEAAAAAAAAMMMM!"
- Used by the Joker in Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe's DC story mode after Captain Marvel tells Superman and the four DC villains the name of the Original Generation Big Bad (Dark Kahn, a merger of DC's Darkseid and MK's Shao Kahn). Though the camera is above him, it cuts thrice, each one more distanced from him (and echoing his voice) rather than pulling away smoothly. Then Deathstroke tells him to shut up.
- The first major turning point in Star Ocean 3 ends with Fayt screaming "WHAT THE HELL AM I!?!?!"
- Super Mario Galaxy has a happy example, for a change: "WELCOME! WELCOME NEW GAAAAAALLAAAAAAXXXYYYYYY!!!"
- In Warcraft 3 in the scene when Grom Hellscream kills Mannoroth there are some pretty dramatic screams, that however being wordless don't quite qualify as Big Nos, and at the end of the scene, following Grom's death, a very powerful Khan Scream.
- When von Karma sees that his goose is cooked in the first Ace Attorney game, he can't help but cry "EEEEEEEDDDDDGGGGEWOOOOOOOOOORRRRRTTTTHHHHH!"
- In Case 4 of Apollo Justice, when Kristoph Gavin realizes that he's been ultimately outdone, he screams: ** "WWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWRRRRRRRRRRRRRRIIIIIIIIIIGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT"
- Quercus Alba takes this Up to Eleven when he starts screaming Edgeworth's name so forcefully, he can't even finish the name before continuing into high pitched shrieking.
- Dude even gets fireworks in his Skyward Scream!
- Yakuza 3: "RIKIYAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!"
- Haseo from the Dot Hack GU games whenever he unleashes his hidden powers.
- "Come on... come on... I'm right here... SKEEEEIIIIIIIIIIIIITTTTTTTTHHHHHH!!!!
- Metal Gear Solid: LIQUIIDDDDDDD!!!
- In Final Fantasy IV DS, during the disaster at Mist, Cecil does a textbook one.
Kain: "He wished this village torched!"
Cecil: "But why? WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY?!?!"
- At the end of Crisis Core, Cloud, after Zacks death.
- Played for Laughs in The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks. Zelda, now a wandering spirit, learns that The Dragon is going to use her body as a vessel for the Big Bad. Her reaction? She flies up and screams right at the camera.
- Xenosaga: UZUUUUUUUKIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII!!!!
- The ending(s) of the original Diablo, after the Player Character jams Diablo's soulstone into their own forehead.
- Dr. Nefarious: '''QWAAAAAARRRRRRRKKKKK!'''
- LAAAWREEEENCE! might also count, but without the camera angle.
- Iori lets out one in the anime opening of Dreamcast-only The King of Fighters 1999 Dream Match. We don't hear his voice, but the image is there.
- In Over Blood Raz shouts Pipo's name like this when he "dies" (he is a robot).
- Kingdom Hearts II, when Roxas, upon discovering that all of his memories are fake, that he has no right to exist, and that to restore Sora's memories and wake him up, Roxas must be sacrificed. He attempts to attack DiZ for putting him through all of it, only to find out that he isn't even in the room, just showing him a projection of himself. Roxas's anger, despair, and frustration reaches a boiling point there, and he just screams. Poor kid has gone through some serious sh*t.
- Garlot of Blaze Union is prone enough to doing this (sans corny camerawork) that the game developers saw fit to give him an actual dialogue portrait devoted to passionate yelling.
- Dead Rising: At the end of Overtime Mode, Frank belts out a fantastic scream, complete with camera pan and spin.
- In Tales of Symphonia, Genis does this when he and Lloyd realize the monster they just killed was actually his friend Marble.
- The Safe ending of Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors has Junpei doing this. KANNNNNYYYYY!!!
- Also Ace's "ZEEEEEROOOOOOOOOOO!!!" in the same ending
- The Tales Series RPG characters are known to do this when performing their signature Limit Break attacks.
- In TimeSplitters: Future Perfect, Sergeant Cortez lets out a furious 'Urgh... Gawd-DAAAAAAAMIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIT!' after unwittingly giving the Big Bad the details of his plot. This takes place in the middle of the 21st century, but the skyward scream is so intense, it echoes through time, being heard by ally Harry Tipper in 1970, and a man implied to be Tipper's elderly son. Bonus points for the implication that Tipper is at the point of conceiving said son.
- Golden Sun: Dark Dawn wrings a Big "NO!" from Eoleo this way during the Grave Eclipse, when his father dies of monster-inflicted wounds.
- Ieyasu...I will...KIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIILL YOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOU!!!!
- Miguel in Tekken 6.
- Done multiple times in NieR, most notably by Nier when the Shadowlord and Grimoire Noir kidnap Yonah, and by the Shadowlord himself with Gestalt Yonah commits suicide.
- In Tales of Innocence, when Luca finds out who caused the Fall of Devaloka, he summons this trope - camerawork and everything - to curse him for all the suffering it has caused.
- Xenoblade. "FIOOOORAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!"
- Final Fantasy XIII-2: SEEEEEEEEEERRRRRRAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!
- Asura's Wrath: Asura gets in on this one a few times, though it's actually rather rare that we see him doing so. His Skyward Scream for his wife is a single howl of rage and grief, though he does scream his daughter Mithra's name out as he goes to rescue her. However, when a human girl who looks like Mithra dies in front of him, he has a long moment where he seems like he can't breathe OR scream, and then the overhead view of the trope comes into play and very bad things happen to very bad people.
- Final Fantasy X: HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEYYYYYYYYYYYYY! (Tidus, realising that he's stranded and alone in Spira. The camera even pans upward as he yells.)
- In Dragon Age II, this gets Played for Laughs in the Mark of the Assassin DLC, where Hawke's idea of finding a way past the Chateau guards, involves taking a massive bite out of the scenery whilst pretending to be a foppish noble, stung by a bee.
Hawke: If I die, makes sure world knows... *Falls to their knees* I DIED AT CHATEAU-HAINE!
- Brock lets out a real primal one in Poker Night 2 if he loses with a strong hand.
- Rolie Polie Olie did this once. It was quite Narmy.
- The Critic.
- In the season 3 finale of Jackie Chan Adventures, the last scene shows the demon Shendu, petrified again, yelling "CHAAAAAAAANNNN!!!!!" as the "camera" pans out.
- Leela does one of these in the Futurama episode "Love's Labors Lost in Space" after waking up from a night of pity sex with Fake Ultimate Hero Zapp Brannigan, who is himself a parody of William Shatner.
- Also Nibbler in the Futurama film Bender's Big Score: "Doooomed!"
- Bender himself has one in an episode wherein he takes a big breath and says "DOOOOOOOOOME-" before he's cut off by a scene change. His was the third in a series of the characters having progressively longer skyward screams.
- "Ghost in the Machines" had Bender screaming "DAMN YOU, OBAMACARE!!!"
- In the season 2 opening of Legion Of Superheroes, Imperiex does one of these. WITH SPINNING of course.
- Cartman after Scott Tenorman burns his money.
- Parodied in The Simpsons with Rainier Wolfcastle's "MEN-DO-ZAAAA!"
- Also done in "Bart's Comet", three times by Principal Skinner. The first is when Skinner gets back to Bart, only to find he's called the observatory with his find of a comet and they're gonna name it after him. The second is when Skinner accidentally lets go of the "Hi! I'm big butt Skinner!" weather balloon. The third is when Skinner read a disparaging remark about the Elementary school from a newspaper landing in front of him. Each one is accompanied by a Big "NO!".
- Also, Homer's reaction to Mr. Burns failing to recognize him again in "Who Shot Mr. Burns, Part 1":
Kids, would you step out side for a second? (kids run out, Homer stands up, looks skyward
) F— (cut to church organ hitting a minor chord
Dear Lord, that's the loudest profanity I've ever heard!
- And from the Movie we have "DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMEE!"
- And from season 5's "Bart Gets an Elephant", whereupon Homer mistakenly believes Blackheart, the ivory dealer, took Bart along with Stampy:
Homer:He took Bart, too? (runs to window) That wasn't part of the deal, Blackheart! THAT WASN'T PAAAARRRRRRRT!
- "Stroker and Hoop" parodied this with the character Stroker screaming "KHAAAAAN-ja" after being swindled and taken to a mental asylum by a woman, pretending to be an alien, (though later revealed to be a real alien) named Khan'Ja.
- Demona from Gargoyles mixes this with a Big "NO!" when she discovers her planning got her own clan brutally killed, complete with her falling to her knees and raising her hands to the sky.
- DAMN YOU HASBROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!
- KUH-LOOOOOOOOOWNS!!!! (Clowns, clowns, clowns...)
- Super Mario World:
Mama Luigi: Mario! Wherever you are, HHHHEEEEEEEEEELLLLLLLLLPPPPPPPPP!
- Dan does this Once an Episode in Dan Vs., when declaring his desire for revenge on the episode's subject. He even manages this while stuck to the ground in a pool of maple syrup.
- Elise does this in a flashback in "Dan Vs. New Mexico" that shows why she hates New Mexico too.
- At the end of "Dan Vs. the Dinosaur", Tyra the dinosaur does this when Dan mails her his car repair bill.
- Phineas and Ferb: Candace does this in "Gaming the System" when it looks like her brothers have been killed by the final boss of the video game they've been pulled into.
- Ed Eddn Eddy:
- "Over Your Ed" opens with Edd taking a bath, and freaking out in this manner over "STUBBORN GRASS STAINS!"
- "Rambling Ed" feature's Rolf's frustrated cry of "THE BURDEN OF HOSPITALITY IS TOO GREAT FOR ROLF!", which is loud enough to be heard across the cul-de-sac.
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: Spike does this twice (accompanied by a Big "NO!") in "A Dog and Pony Show", first when Rarity gets kidnapped by the Diamond Dogs, then again when he and Rarity's other friends end up lost in the Diamond Dogs' tunnels.
- Coop from Megas XLR gives one of these (Retracting his robot car's convertible hood to do so) when he realized his battles with the alien robot of the week have destroyed the last Mega Slush machine in the greater Jersey area.
- A parody of the A Streetcar Named Desire example above occurs in Over the Hedge.
- SpongeBob SquarePants, "The Fry Cook Games": "MY NAME'S! NOT! RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIICK!!!"
- In Transformers Prime, Starscream curses Megatron's name in an episode.
- Arcee provides an incoherent one after Soundwave teleports her to the Arctic before she could reach an amnesic Optimus on the Decepticon ship.
- Suprisingly, Optimus does this in "Inside Job" when Starscream steals the Omega keys. Dreadwing does it again in the following episode when he learns of what Starscream did to his brother's corpse and hearing Megatron's advice on keeping that secret from him.
- As stated in Powerpuff Girls Doujinshi, Prof. Utonium is not a fan of parent teacher conferences.
Utonium: (Handed a note from school) P-P-PARENT TEACHER CONFERENCE?! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!
- Bubbles does this in "Mime For A Change" upon being the only person in Townsville who hasn't been drained of life and color by the evil Mr. Mime (just before she gets the idea to sing everyone back to color and life).
- PAAAARTY WAAAAGON!!!!
- Gravity Falls
- Grunkle Stan does this in "Headhunters" when encouraging Dipper and Mabel to track down the vandal who decapitated the wax dummy of himself.
Grunkle Stan: Avenge me, kids! Avenge me!!
- The beginning of Astérix and the Vikings, when Timandahaf realizes that village his crew are sacking is empty.
"Hello...? Anyone home...? By Thor...WHHHHYYYYY!?"
- In Pooh's Heffalump Movie, Piglet does this when Pooh eats the jellybeans he left on the ground to find their way back.
Piglet: Oh no, WEEEEEE'RRREE LLLLOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOSSSSSSTTT!!!!!
- Total Drama All-Stars: Sierra screams "CAAAAAAAAM-OOOOOOODDDDDDDDYYYYYYYYYYYY!" when she loses Cameron (who she thinks is Cody).
- Codename: Kids Next Door Operation: I.N.T.E.R.V.I.E.W.S.: Father combines this with a Big "NO!" when he realizes that Numbuh 1, who stole his pipe as part of the scavenger hunt, has vanished off the face of the Earth with no clue as to where he's gone.
Father: Nigel Uno! I'm done playing games with you, boy! GIVE ME BACK MY PIPE THIS... (Explodes onto an empty cave) No. No! NOOOOOOOOOO!! (Pan up to the night sky- with one star twinkling.)