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Misused (Discussing fate of old name): Evil Eye get usage counts

Evil Eye has three existing meanings off-wiki:
  • A curse ("the Evil Eye")
  • A glare ("giving someone the evil eye")
  • The literal interpretation of evil-looking eyes.
It is being misused as such both in wicks and on its own example list, and is being renamed.


Next round of roll-call: the new name. As before, we'll be taking votes for a minimum of 72 hours. The options: Vote [tup] or [tdown] on each option. For the sake of easy tallying and avoiding repeats, if you change your mind on something, please edit your original vote post (and make a new post saying you changed your mind if you'd like to post your reasons).

edited 3rd Apr '13 11:50:29 AM by Ironeye

 1 Ironeye, Mon, 18th Mar '13 1:09:11 AM from SoCal Relationship Status: Falling within your bell curve
With Mod Hat On
Evil Eye has three existing meanings off-wiki:
  • A curse ("the Evil Eye")
  • A glare ("giving someone the evil eye")
  • The literal interpretation of evil-looking eyes.
It is being misused as such both in wicks and on its own example list, and is being renamed.


Next round of roll-call: the new name. As before, we'll be taking votes for a minimum of 72 hours. The options: Vote [tup] or [tdown] on each option. For the sake of easy tallying and avoiding repeats, if you change your mind on something, please edit your original vote post (and make a new post saying you changed your mind if you'd like to post your reasons).

edited 3rd Apr '13 11:50:29 AM by Ironeye

I'm bad, and that's good. I will never be good, and that's not bad. There's no one I'd rather be than me.
 2 Septimus Heap, Mon, 18th Mar '13 2:35:02 AM from Madrid, Spain Relationship Status: Mu
Another Wizard boy

Original Post 1 (Ironeye)

The trope Evil Eye is for when the eye itself is magical, though the examples are all over the place. They include:
  • The colloquial "evil eye" (i.e. glaring at someone) and other things called "Evil Eye" or "Evil Eyes"
  • Odd eye colors marking characters as evil (i.e. another interpretation of "evil eye" as a title), which actually belong on Red Right Hand
  • Eyes that somehow relate to a character's unusual abilities, whether by changing color when the abilities are used, or something else entirely, but aren't themselves aiding in the magic
  • Hypnotic Eyes (which seems like it should be a subtrope or sister trope, depending on perspective, but is never called out as such)
  • Extra eyes grown, whether or not they have special abilities.
  • The standard telepathic trope of looking into someone's eyes to read their mind. (Do we have this one already?)
  • Electronic Eyes
  • Explicitly magical eyes (i.e. the actual trope)
This isn't the wicks, mind, but the example list—the thing that theoretically is read after the description. Turns out that when people read "evil eye" they often don't think "magical eye", and when they read a description about magical eyes, they think "any connection between eyes and magic". Something's gone horribly wrong here, and it needs to be fixed.

I think that there may actually be three tropes here: the intended one (magical eyes), "eye color changing to indicate power" as a Sister Trope to Glowing Eyes, and "magic/powers that only work via eye contact". None of these are well-served with the name Evil Eye.

Original Post 2 (Septimus)

I believe people read the name, then the description, Go Mad from the Revelation and add any possible stuff.

edited 27th Mar '13 1:31:12 PM by Ironeye

 3 lu 127, Mon, 18th Mar '13 2:42:02 AM from the Capital of Light Relationship Status: Loves me...loves me not
Honestly, I've never been thrilled with using Evil Eye as the title for a trope about magical eyes, since the potential for confusion is too great. Not all magical eyes are evil, or even evil-looking. There can be overlap between eyes of evil and magical eyes, but they are two separate things. The way the page + name are organised just squishes both together. We also have the related Hellish Pupils.

The "eye color changing to indicate power" is close enough to Eye Colour Change, I'd think.

何も恐れる事わ無い
 4 montmorencey, Mon, 18th Mar '13 2:50:06 AM from the quaint town of Grimm, Bismarck and Gauss
So...yeah.
I find Evil Eye for a name highly confusing. The RL application of the term just blurs the definition even more.
Complicated - because simple is simply too simple.
 5 Macron Notes, Mon, 18th Mar '13 4:15:23 AM from Pennsylvania Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Magic powers that only work by eye contact seems to be covered by No Eye in Magic. Although, the trope seems to be more about being immune to it.

edited 19th Mar '13 1:53:31 AM by MacronNotes

The Insomiac
World's Toughest Milkman
Yes, I've always thought this was a particularly poor name for this particular trope, since there's nothing inherently evil about it, and the common meaning of the term is something else (albeit something that frequently overlaps with this). If there's misuse (and I'm fairly certain there is, since I've seen some), then I think we should rename it. Or possibly perform a transplant!

eta: beyond misuse, there's probably quite a bit of underuse, since people probably think this is narrower than it is. i.e., limited to evil versions.

edited 20th Mar '13 6:06:51 PM by Xtifr

"Existential Despair" is an oxymoron.
 7 Another Duck, Wed, 20th Mar '13 7:09:39 PM from Stockholm Relationship Status: Chocolate!
No, the other one.
I've heard the name outside TV Tropes as referring to the same thing. A power that's not necessarily evil in itself, with explanations that it comes from how witches were seen as evil, but people disagree with that. Or something; it was a while ago.

That said, is there a more statistical case for misuse or underuse? It has 500+ wicks and almost 300 inbounds. That's not particularly bad, but should be be more?
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 8 Ironeye, Thu, 21st Mar '13 1:26:51 AM from SoCal Relationship Status: Falling within your bell curve
Cutmaster-san
I haven't finished my wick check yet (Curse finals for getting in the way!), but preliminary results suggest ~15%-20% misuse. Interestingly, correct use (albeit often with no relevant context) from Code Geass and Naruto alone account for over 20% of the ~30 wicks thus far analyzed. Turns out people really like linking to Evil Eye when they write about Lelouch's eye.

In any case, I'll post a full report this weekend when I hit 60 wicks. (I've been using an RNG, so the sample should be representative.)

Edit: Also, this is pretty clearly not under-used, since those are great numbers.

edited 21st Mar '13 1:31:28 AM by Ironeye

I'm bad, and that's good. I will never be good, and that's not bad. There's no one I'd rather be than me.
World's Toughest Milkman
Depends on the age of the trope. For a really old trope, those aren't all that impressive numbers. I'd be more interested to see what percentage of the examples involve actual evil. That might tell us more about whether this is being underused for non-evil cases.

As for what Another Duck says he's seen—I think the more important question is how often does it get used in our sense. I think it's probably pretty rare. Heck the actual dictionary disagrees with our definition! [1] [2] [3]
"Existential Despair" is an oxymoron.
 10 Another Duck, Thu, 21st Mar '13 6:23:50 PM from Stockholm Relationship Status: Chocolate!
No, the other one.
Well, I pretty clearly (I thought) implied it wasn't really common, and personally I don't quite like the name. Magic Eye or Magical Eye would be better.
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Dragon Writer
For a name with several potential meanings, it may help to classify the usage by context (as you categorized in OP) rather than simply "correct" or "misuse".note 

edited 22nd Mar '13 9:34:30 AM by Stratadrake

Another use: eyes that indicate malevolent influence upon a person (used as such for a pothole in In the Mouth of Madness).

World's Toughest Milkman
[up]That's actually the correct definition...anywhere but this wiki.

(I honestly think that "doesn't match the dictionary definition" should be an automatic reason to rename, but we'll see...)
"Existential Despair" is an oxymoron.
Dragon Writer
Yeah, I tend to agree that if it's not consistent with common (non-wiki) usage of the term then the name should be considered automatically bad.
 15 Ironeye, Tue, 26th Mar '13 9:30:58 PM from SoCal Relationship Status: Falling within your bell curve
Cutmaster-san
Here are the first 53 wicks (chosen randomly and ignoring Laconic.Evil Eye for obvious reasons)

Nasuverse (7)

A bit of research shows that all of the Nasuverse examples are superficially correct, but actually incorrect—characters are said to have "mystical eyes" that let them see things they otherwise could not, but the powers work even if their eyes are gouged out. Yes, this means the page quote on Evil Eye doesn't technically refer to the trope.

Code Geass (5)

Examples here almost universally refer to Lelouch's Geass. They are always correct, but come with the evil-looking and deal-with-the-devil subtext.

Doujutsu (5)

Doujutsu refers to any "eye technique" in ninja stories. It's generally a bit ambiguous as to whether the eyes are a symptom of having the power, or themselves magical. Given the name, I'm going to err on the side of calling these correct. Most of these examples are from Naruto—I'll indicate when they are not.

The Mystical Evil Eye (3)

That is, the curse-causing traditional usage. Usually has nothing to do with the eyes themselves being magical.

Just Glaring (2)

"Giving someone the evil eye", colloqially.

Petrifying Gaze (3)

A common variant where the being looking upon someone would turn them to stone. A particularly common crossover between eyes and Taken for Granite, often with a heaping dose of No Eye in Magic. May or may not be actual magical eyes—it's not always easy to tell. Possible subtrope as the basilisk/gorgon/cockatrice ability?

Eyes That Look Evil (4)

...and have no magical powers.

Other Incorrect Examples (7)

Other Correct Examples (10)

Insufficient Context to Determine (6)

Other (1)

  • VideoGame.Dark Souls: A mix of magical eye-themed artifacts and actual magical eyes used as magical eye-themed artifacts.

And, yes, I also agree that on-wiki usage contradicting off-wiki usage is a bad thing. Also, the above shows it clearly causes misuse.

edited 26th Mar '13 9:31:55 PM by Ironeye

I'm bad, and that's good. I will never be good, and that's not bad. There's no one I'd rather be than me.
[up] Like I said, the In the Mouth of Madness example uses the definition "unusual eyes that indicate that a person is being controlled or otherwise altered by a malevolent force."

Just noting this because it's another item to add to the list of possible ways to split this trope.

 17 lu 127, Tue, 26th Mar '13 11:29:16 PM from the Capital of Light Relationship Status: Loves me...loves me not
Naruto is correct. The eye itself is a source of power, to the point they all rip each other's eyes out for power.

Petrifying gaze is also under the wider trope Brown Note.

edited 27th Mar '13 12:19:22 AM by lu127

何も恐れる事わ無い
 18 Ironeye, Wed, 27th Mar '13 12:13:52 AM from SoCal Relationship Status: Falling within your bell curve
Cutmaster-san
By a quick estimate, if we toss out the examples that even a quick Google search couldn't help with, we're looking at 1/3 obvious misuse, with over half of that corresponding to one of the three things we'd expect people to think when they read "evil eye".

It's also interesting to note that a full third of the examples came from only three sources: the Nasuverse (incorrect, but not obvious unless you know the setting well), Code Geass (always correct and usually referring to Lelouch, despite how many other characters also have one or two), and Naruto (correct, not that half an hour of poking around fan sites was enough to resolve that—thanks, lu smile).

Anyway, my conclusions from the whole thing:
  • The trope desperately needs to be renamed. "Evil Eye" having three obvious existing meanings, almost 1/5 wick misuse for those meanings, and even collecting that misuse in the page's own examples means the name isn't working. Magic Eye/Magical Eye would be the sort of name people would expect to find this trope under.
  • The eye tropes need more cross-referencing. The concept between No Eye in Magic is mentioned in-description, but never wicked, leading people to think that Evil Eye is the best place for that.
  • Even if the petrifying gaze subtrope is slightly over-represented in this sample, its prevalence suggests at least two dozen other examples in the Evil Eye wicks—that's more than enough for a subtrope of No Eye in Magic and Brown Note.
  • As came up in the discussion of Mismatched Eyes, there's need for a "magic/powers make eyes funky" supertrope to collect all of the examples that are ending up on the "close enough" eye tropes.
I'm bad, and that's good. I will never be good, and that's not bad. There's no one I'd rather be than me.
 19 Another Duck, Wed, 27th Mar '13 12:33:58 AM from Stockholm Relationship Status: Chocolate!
No, the other one.
So, we need a rename of this trope, and better coordination along with supertrope(s) concerning eyes with or because of mystic stuff?
Check out my fanfiction!
 20 Ironeye, Wed, 27th Mar '13 12:55:36 AM from SoCal Relationship Status: Falling within your bell curve
Cutmaster-san
That's a concise summary, yes. smile
I'm bad, and that's good. I will never be good, and that's not bad. There's no one I'd rather be than me.
 21 Another Duck, Wed, 27th Mar '13 2:45:53 AM from Stockholm Relationship Status: Chocolate!
No, the other one.
Right. So, we have:

There are also several tropes with powers relating to sight, like Aura Vision, Detect Evil, Enemy Scan, Stat-O-Vision, True Sight, and maybe others. These can work with cameras, lenses, or other equipment, though, so I don't group them with the above. Likewise, several tropes that signify some kind of otherness or power, but those generally fall more directly under Technicolour Eyes, as they don't (generally) have a power in themselves.

Personally I think it looks like we have one TRS job (renaming and cleaning Evil Eye), and one Short Term Project involving the rest, though I'm not clear on exactly what's needed there.

edited 27th Mar '13 2:49:43 AM by AnotherDuck

Check out my fanfiction!
 22 Ironeye, Wed, 27th Mar '13 11:54:56 AM from SoCal Relationship Status: Falling within your bell curve
Cutmaster-san
We can mull over the STP for a bit—there's not rush to start it. For now, I'm going to set up the rename crowner so that we can turn this general consensus into an official one.
I'm bad, and that's good. I will never be good, and that's not bad. There's no one I'd rather be than me.
 23 Septimus Heap, Wed, 27th Mar '13 11:56:06 AM from Madrid, Spain Relationship Status: Mu
Another Wizard boy
I would just drop by to note that we'll have problems with crowners for some time.

 24 Ironeye, Wed, 27th Mar '13 11:58:19 AM from SoCal Relationship Status: Falling within your bell curve
Cutmaster-san
Oh, right, the IP thing. Hmmmmm.

I'll speak to the other mods about this.
I'm bad, and that's good. I will never be good, and that's not bad. There's no one I'd rather be than me.
 25 Septimus Heap, Wed, 27th Mar '13 12:10:12 PM from Madrid, Spain Relationship Status: Mu
Another Wizard boy
For the record, the bug causes votes to be recorded that were never cast, or flipping someone's vote. I would not rely on a crowner made during this time for a rename - I would either put the crowner off or use a rollcall vote like here.

Total posts: 114
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