Vacuum Mouth

Basically Super Breath in reverse, a character takes a deep breath in order to draw various objects in along with the air, water, or whatever other substance they happen to be in. There are two main versions of this trope:

The first is a comedic sight-gag often used by lazy Big Eaters to conveniently suck the food before them into their mouth without having to lift a finger. In animation, this may be accompanied by the sound of a vacuum cleaner and/or have the character's mouth take the shape of a vacuum nozzle for added humor.

The second is an ability often used by creatures with big mouths and voracious appetites to draw their opponents towards them, in an attempt to devour them or simply draw them closer for an attack. However, because of the indiscriminate nature of this ability, explosives and other inedible objects can potentially cause problems for its users. Frequently leads to Just Eat Him when used against main characters.

In both, realism levels may vary. As the real life examples below show, this trick can in fact work in a liquid medium such as water over at least short distances. In most of the more cartoonish depictions, though, the suction is created by drawing in air... which would "realistically" require a rather phenomenal lung capacity to exercise any significant force at range, let alone keep the effect going for any length of time (things like vacuum cleaners and jet engines work because they let the air pass straight through them instead of trying to hold it all in).

Compare Breath Weapon, Weapons That Suck, and Tractor Beam. The user may get a Volumetric Mouth.


    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • Yammy Llargo from Bleach use this as an attack called "Gonzui" (literally "Soul Sucker") to devour at once the souls of tons of people in a very large area. It works only on the souls of weak people without special powers.
  • In Toriko, the Regal Mammoth uses one of his trunks as a vacuum to suck in his prey. He then uses the other one to expel the bones. Later, the mosquito-themed villain Grinpatch can do this with the help of his weapon, a giant straw.
  • In Yaiba, Yakitori the giant anglerfish does this to Yaiba's friends to swallow them all up. Justified as he does it in the water.
  • In Jojos Bizarre Adventure, Jotaro had Star Platinum suck up Enya Geil's Stand Justice, which had the form of a large fog, causing Enya to suffocate.

    Comic Books 
  • Gold Key Comics' Star Trek story The Planet of no Return, a.k.a. K-G, Planet of Death, featured cannibal plants which could literally suck a landing party off their feet from a considerable distance.
  • In the final Marvel issue of Mighty Mouse, "Survival Of The Hippest," our hero uses his own vacuum breath to counter that of a mysterious figure using a vacuum to suck the hipness out of popular late night talk show hosts. The P.R. medics tell Mighty Mouse that "the audience thought you really sucked!"

    Comic Strips 
  • Garfield does this in a comic. It entailed him sucking his food up because he didn't want to get out of bed.
  • Jeremy from Zits has been known to do this, especially when going through a growth spurt.

    Films — Animation 
  • In Yellow Submarine there's a character literally called the Vacuum Monster. It eats up everything, including itself.
  • The Dragon Hunters movie has for main villain the "World Gobbler", a gigantic Dracolich whose main attack is a hurricane-strength Vacuum Mouth. As it's a skeleton, it certainly has no stomach; instead, everything blown into its mouth disappear in a vortex of white light. It threatens to do so to the protagonists several times; they're only saved by desperatly clinging to its teeth.

    Films — Live-Action 

  • In Far Rainbow, the Charybdis are truck-like machines that "suck up" thermal energy, specifically the energy of the Waves. Their "funnels" are repeatedly compared to the mouth of the mythological monster they were named after.
  • In Journey to the West, the Azure Lion King can open his huge mouth to suck in whole armies. Has the not so bright idea of sucking in Monkey, who wreaks havoc in his insides.

    Video Games 
  • The final boss for Alien Syndrome, which is implemented by six spiraling inward clouds.
  • Kirby is a prime example of this trope, in both the video games and the anime.
    • King Dedede has this power as well. Rick the Hamster could do this in Kirby's Dream Land 2 but not 3.
    • Storo does the comical version of this trope in one of the mini-games in Kirby: Squeak Squad.
    • Many Kirby games enhance this ability in various ways with what is known as a "Super Inhale". In the GBA/DS games, this means inhaling for a short amount of time to widen Kirby's mouth, allowing him to move or swallow large objects. In the Wii game, Kirbys Returnto Dreamland, shaking the controller while inhaling causes Kirby to inhale a lot stronger, and he can inhale giant objects and multiple enemies/objects at once.
    • Gets taken Up to Eleven in Kirby Triple Deluxe, where the new Hypernova ability grants Kirby a rainbow color scheme, along with drastically boosted inhaling ability that lets him suck up enemies and objects that are several times larger than him. It makes the aforementioned Super Inhale look weak by comparison.
  • Mario & Luigi:
    • Birdo, with her large snout, can do this in Marioand Luigi Superstar Saga and certain other spin-offs in the series.. Bowletta does this on the incapacitated Mario Bros. in the fight against her, leading to them having to defeat Cackletta's soul in her gut.
    • Bowser unexpectedly gaining this ability is responsible for much of the events in Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story, subjecting the bros. and numerous Mushroom Kingdom citizens to a "Fantastic Voyage" Plot after he accidentally sucks them up. Gameplay wise, he can use this ability to suck up small or flying enemies that he can't deal with in order to let Mario and Luigi to handle them. He retains this ability in Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, where he uses it to merge with the shattered Dream Stone for the final boss fight.
  • In Rayman Origins, the mosquitos can inhale and spit out enemies a la Kirby. An achievement is unlockable after inhaling 50 enemies, called "Vacuum Snack". In the same game, small buzzing insects with funnel-shaped mouths can inhale Rayman to shrink/enlarge him.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • An enemy by the trope name exists in Link's Awakening, in the second dungeon. Link must cross the room while avoiding being pulled into a bottomless pit surrounding the enemy.
    • Lord Jabu-Jabu accidentally inhales Link after Link gives him a fish, as he attempts to inhale the fish. It's implied that earlier he also sucked up Princess Ruto, and in Master Quest, cows.
  • Chaos 6 in Sonic Adventure may attempt to inhale Sonic/Knuckles during the battle, but also has the unintended side effect of sucking in any deactivated bombs lying around the arena.
  • In Dynamite Headdy, one of the heads that can be obtained is a giant vacuum that eats all the on-screen enemies.
  • Kid Icarus: Uprising:
    • This is one of Pandora's attacks. One of the monsters has this as its attack too.
    • Hades does this in the beginning of chapter 23 to suck up Pit. Swallowed Whole follows soon after.
  • 'Wario World''
    • Wario can use a variant of this to gather coins more quickly.
    • The Dual Dragons also utilize this. While they can't suck Wario up directly, they can suck up the numerous Glue Globes that are released prior to it occurring, which Wario can get stuck to.
  • One of the primary feeding/attack methods used by the Gobul in Monster Hunter Tri.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • The various worm monsters in Final Fantasy X use this as a counterattack to swallow a party member after they suffer enough abuse. There's also Geosgaeno, who uses the aquatic variation.
    • The Sandworm boss in Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles also does this, but only for the purpose of drawing you closer so it can body slam you. It presents a prime opportunity to get some free hits in on it, due to how sluggish the latter attack is.
  • In Kingdom Hearts, Ursula uses this in second fight against her to draw you close for a biting attack.
    • In Kingdom Hearts 3D, the Jestabocky dream eater and its relative, the Ghostabocky, use this as a painful (And as enemies, very annoying) attack, chewing on the victim briefly before spitting them out. Their Ghost Vacuum link attack is a multi-target version.
  • The Legendary Starfy
    • The main villain, Mashtooth, inhales his victims — through his nose. Usually seen only in cutscenes, he uses the ability during his final battle in an attempt to inhale Starfy.
    • One of the bosses in Densetsu no Stafy 2, Numan, also has this as her main attack, where she will suck up the water Starfy is in to pull him into her mouth, eat him and spit him out.

    Web Animation 
  • One Strong Bad Email from Homestar Runner had the King of Town consume an entire mound of salt (even the shakers) this way.

    Web Comics 
  • Ace Dick, Fiesta Ace Dick, and Mobster Kingpin all do this in Problem Sleuth.
  • Pretty much the main theme, and specialty of all the monsters, in the furry comic Work Sucks.

    Web Original 
  • The Walfas program Create.swf has a background called "DEATH BY YUYUKO", featuring a large Yuyuko Saigyouji. Click on her mouth and she will suck up any character standing before her.

    Western Animation 
  • Patrick did this in three episodes of Spongebob Squarepants. First in the episode "Grandma's Kisses", when he sucks up a bunch of cookies offered by Spongebob's grandma, the second time in the episode "Club Spongebob" when he sucks up a sandwich that was on a table, and the third time in the episode "Pat No Pay" when he sucks up a whole bunch of Krabby Patties that were stacked on top of each other.
  • This is also akin to cartoon anteaters and aardvarks, such as in The Ant and the Aardvark, where the eponymous Aardvark will use his mouth to suck up the ant, complete with the sound of a vacuum cleaner.
  • The A Pup Named Scooby-Doo episode "The Sludge Monster from the Earth's Core" had Scooby use this technique with popcorn.
  • Mr. Bogus:
    • Bogus does this in the third act of the episode "Babysitting Bogus" with a straw to suck up a glass of chocolate milk, a whole turkey, a slice of cake, a slice of pie, a bowlful of chili peppers (though accidentally), and an entire pitcher of fruit punch.
    • Bogus does this with cotton candy at the beginning of the episode "Waterboy Bogus". His head taking the shape of a genuine vacuum head as he does it.
    • He does this again at the beginning of the episode "The Bogus Invasion", with cheese casserole.
  • On the Donald Duck cartoon Donald's Cousin Gus, Gus takes a straw and sucks up a line of peas across the dinner table. Donald takes a straw of his own and tries to suck up the last pea, and the two engage in a tug-of-war until Gus traps the pea in a teapot.
  • In the Tom and Jerry short "Jerry and Jumbo", a baby elephant Jerry is hiding sucks up peanuts with his trunk from across the room.
  • Igôle from Wakfu, the Right-Hand Attack Dog of Big Bad Nox, uses this power to capture and imprison his targets.

    Real Life 
  • The Nurse Shark will invariably suck up any prey that it finds on the ocean floor.
  • Several aquatic or amphibious animals such as fish and turtles catch prey this way. By opening their mouth very quickly they create a vacuum that sucks water in, along with any small fishes.