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Can't See a Damn Thing

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When sunglasses at night is problematic.

The person involved is effectively blind, either because of environmental conditions (their windshield is covered with snow or mud), someone blinded them (by light or throwing something in their eyes), or they've lost their means to see (lost glasses, lost visual device.) The examples should only be of either blindness or of serious inability to see.

Tropes that involve this problem:

In Video Games, a zero or low visibility level is a form of Interface Screw where your video output device is essentially disabled for a while, requiring you to either obtain means of producing light or to fly blind.



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  • A man says to his wife, "Hey, maw, I'm hungry after driving all day. I'm gonna pull into that diner." Woman responds, "Paw, that's no diner, that's a school bus!" Cue jingle for the advertiser: a maker of windshield wipers.
  • In an ad for eyeglasses, a woman yells out, "Taxi!", gets in the vehicle, tells the driver to go somewhere (avoiding a certain very busy street), and the camera pulls back in a Jump Cut to show she's in a police car.

  • In Andhadhun, Simi blinds Akash (who had up to this point faked being blind) for real by poisoning him.
  • In The Cannonball Run, Mel and Terry and driving into the hotel parking lot at high speed when their hood flies open and obscures their windscreen. One of them says "I can't see shit! Can you?" just before they drive into the swimming pool.
  • Django Unchained features a scene with a group of pre-KKK lynchers arguing over the misplaced eye holes in the bags they're wearing on their heads.

    Live Action TV 
  • A MythBusters episode testing the "dust kidnapping" scene from Body of Lies had them testing a safety system by obscuring their view in front (to simulate the dust that they would encounter). Unfortunately, their first "blinding" method (an opaque paper) worked too well; instead of the 10% visibility they were going for, they basically had zero visibility. Their safety system failed as a result. Their second method, using burlap sacks, gave them the required visibility level, and they were able to stay on course with the help of the safety system.

    Tabletop Games 
  • In Pathfinder, magic spells like Darkness and Deeper Darkness are common means of enforcing zero visibility within a limited area, although there are numerous counters to them, from some species' inherent darkvision to spells like Daylight.
    • On of the levels of the Emerald Spire Superdungeon is entirely shrouded in permanent magical Darkness, rendering regular lights like torches useless, while all the monsters in it have darkvision.

    Video Games 
  • The Witcher has several underground levels with zero light sources, rendered in such a way that even setting your monitor's contrast to the max still showed just darkness. The proper way to deal with this is by mixing a Cat potion, which gives Geralt low-light vision.
  • Dark Souls I has the Tomb of the Giants: an entire level mostly shrouded in impenetrable darkness (and populated by giant aggressive skeletons). The only ways to safely navigate this level is by acquiring one of two light-producing items in the game or to cast a light-emitting sorcery.
  • The Cat Lady has a brief segment where Susan is blinded by the villains, so the player's screen is blacked out while they navigate her blindly to find the gun one of the bad guys left behind and shoot herself (since Susan has Resurrective Immortality, she comes back to life in full health immediately).
  • Starcraft: In the expansion, the Medic's Optic Flare induces this in units, reducing their sight range to nil, and more importantly, neutralizing their detecting abilities (please ignore that some of these abilities are explicitly provided by technological or psychic means).

    Western Animation 
  • This was the entire premise of the Mr. Magoo series of cartoons; the eponymous protagonist mistook all sorts of (often dangerous) things for other things because of his near blindness, yet always came out unscathed.
  • An episode of The Flintstones has Fred going to the circus and becoming the star performer, because he walked out into the performers area and got into the act. The reason he's doing this is because he is wearing not the glasses he was prescribed, but accidentally took the optometrist's glasses instead, and is wearing them by mistake (and the optometrist's uncorrected vision is a lot worse).


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