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Censor Suds

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Much like Censor Steam, this trope is when a character is taking a bubble bath and seems to have the suds from the bath conveniently covering the private parts of their body when they get out, and also while inside of the bath. In real life this does happen, but not nearly so selectively as this trope might lead you to believe. On top of that, the suds in real life will slide off one's body and it would take a lot (as in, the tub would have to look like a root beer float or a beer that's mostly head) to cover the naughty bits completely.

Since bubble baths originated about the same time as the film industry, it's been suggested that the idea was invented by the film industry, so they could show women in the bath without showing naughty bits.

If she or he's bathing outdoors, the character's modesty will more likely to be preserved by either Lens Flare Censor, or Scenery Censor.

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Examples

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    Anime and Manga 
  • In episode 49 of Dragon Ball Z, Bulma stands up in her bubble bath and bends over, conveniently covered by soap suds.
  • In Soul Eater, Blair, Tsubaki, and others are conveniently (barely) covered in soap suds.
  • In the second episode of 009-1, Mylene Hoffman has bubbles conveniently covering her breasts as she gets out of her bubble bath.
  • In Inuyasha, there is a rare male example. Inu-Yasha has convenient bubbles/houseplant/etc. upon him bursting out of the bath.
  • Played with in Sailor Moon: Fish-Eye at one point takes a shower, and we see suds covering his chest. Apparently, he got a little too into the part (and before anyone asks, yes, they were there originally).
  • Done to Rushuna in the 11th episode of Grenadier when she knocks a guard out with a scrub brush.
  • Training with Hinako vol. 3 makes ample use of suds, seeing as Hinako and Hiyoko are naked for pretty much the whole OVA.
  • Ranma ½:
    • Sometimes used in the manga on the (few) non-Gender Bender female characters that Takahashi is reluctant to draw naked, such as Akane.
    • Played for Laughs in one instance of the black-and-white manga. Akane seems to be naked in the bath when Ranma, in a ploy by the family to get him to peep on her, barges in. The suds on her chest and hips make it SEEM like she's still naked when she pulls his head around to force him to look at her... but she's actually wearing a one-piece swimsuit. The suds were only disguising the edges.
  • At the end of the ice palace episode of Sonic X, Rouge the Bat is seen taking a bath, holding a fake Chaos Emerald in her hand. Bubbles cover everything. Oddly, she's wearing her White Gloves in the bath.
  • Subverted in Girl Friends: Mari deliberately applies this to herself when she and Akko are exchanging bath photos with their cell phones. Akko... not so much.
  • When Minerva and Mirajane from Fairy Tail are stripped naked and placed in Tartaros' regenerationg/demon-creating tube tanks, bubbles cover their nipples and genitals. However, since it isn't an actual bubble bath, but mostly clear water with a few bubbles, everything else is visible.

    Comic Books 

    Film 
  • Gozer the Gozerian seems to be permanently covered in these in Ghostbusters (1984).
  • In the movie Howard the Duck, though a lady duck was bathing bare in the original version, there was a mountain of suds to cover her bare bosom in the televised version!
  • Happens in Barb Wire. Kind of pointless, since Barb was shown stripping in the first scene anyway.
  • The script for Futtocks End specifies that General Futtock emerges from the bathroom "clad only in soap-suds, of which, for propriety's sake, there are a great many."
  • In The LEGO Movie, when Emmet is showering he is up to the waist in LEGO suds.
  • Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: Harry Potter invokes this trope when Moaning Myrtle the ghost girl appears in the boys' bathroom while he's taking a bath and trying to solve the golden egg mystery.
  • After getting out of the bath in Pretty Cool Too, Brittany has a mixture of these and camera angles, though her boobs are prominently on display.
  • In the Australian retraux Lesbo-A-Go-Go (2003). Like the no-budget exploitation films it homages, the bathtub scene uses censor suds to suggest nudity while actually delivering very little.
  • Johnny Reno: Some strategically clinging suds protect Nona's modesty when she jumps out of her tub when Johnny walks in on her bathing. She could have sworn she locked that door.
  • In Boy, Did I Get A Wrong Number, model Didi is thrown in to a bathtub and has her dress ripped off, leaving her naked in the tub. She then flees the set with her only clothing being the suds wrapped around her, until she finds a coat to wear.
  • During one scene in 12 Chairs (2016), Ernesta is taking a shower when her electricity turns off. She ventures into her apartment hallway naked, with soap suds barely covering her important parts, and gets caught by a neighbour after her door closes behind her.
  • The Ramrodder: When Lucy stands up out of her bath, her breasts are fully exposed but suds clinging to her crotch preserve a modicum of modesty.
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    Literature 
  • Harry Potter in Goblet of Fire takes a bath filled with various types of suds and bubbles, which proves useful when Myrtle crashes the party. This is done in the film version as well. Myrtle also remarks that when Cedric was there, he remained long enough for the bubbles to vanish.
  • Ridcully has them in Night Watch, but they slide off and he has to borrow a hat.
  • In The Reefs of Space, when Steve Ryeland accidentally bursts in on the beautiful daughter of Earth's leader while she's in her bath, the authors quickly mention that the only things poking out of the bubbles are one knee, two arms, and a head.
  • Invoked in I, Q by Melony. Despite being an Innocent Fanservice Girl, she creates a dress of sea foam when she finds Q's son.
  • The title character of the children's book Nuddy Ned spends the entire book not wearing any clothes, with conveniently located objects covering up his private parts. The first time he's seen in the book, his nudity is covered up by bubble bath suds.
  • In the Robert A. Heinlein science fiction novel The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress the protagonist is sharing a hotel room with a woman who is not one of his wives. He hands her a drink while she's in the bathtub, but notes "nor had I seen sights; she was shoulder deep in happy suds". (Although Lunar society doesn't have much of a nudity taboo in any event.)

    Live-Action TV 
  • This was done in the 1983 NBC Pilot Movie The Invisible Woman. Because Alexa Hamilton's character was invisible, only her pubis had any soap suds on it when she rose to leave the bathtub.
  • Sue Thomas: F.B.Eye had Sue take a bath in a tub completely piled with soapsuds. The only skin showing was her neck, head, and arms. For some reason, a snippet of this scene made it into the Opening Theme sequence.
  • Wings does this with Helen in one episode, and for a good cause since her 'husband' Antonio showed up.
  • Duncan's bathtub scene in Highlander: The Series episode "Chivalry".
  • Cole's bathtub scene in Tracker. Amusingly enough, Cole is played by the same guy as Duncan from the Highlander example above!
  • Fleming: The Man Who Would Be Bond. Ian Fleming finds his Love Interest using his bathtub. She notes that to fulfill this trope, she's using more than the six inches of bathwater allocated by wartime regulations.
  • The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel: In the second episode of season 2, Susie takes a bath on the Weissmans' tub, high as a kite, which is filled with suds. Midge's friend Imogene finds her there and demands to know who she is, and also observes that Susie used an entire bottle of Rose's pink soap, which she says is overkill.
  • The Magician: In "The Illusion of the Curious Counterfeit", Tony is set up and sent to met a Professional Killer in a hotel room: The assassin turns out to be woman who greets Tony in the bath: her modesty protected by the bubble bath.

    Magazines 
  • A '60s Playboy cartoon shows a film crew surrounding a pretty young thing in a bubble bath, from which the director has just pulled the plug: "OK – and now we shoot the European version..."

     Professional Wrestling 

    Theatre 
  • In Tanz Der Vampire, when Alfred finds Sarah (on whom he has a crush) in the castle, she is bathing. Several productions don't use real bubbles for this, though — she is covered with thick layers of spongy white pillow filling, which are completely opaque.

    Toys 
  • LEGO Minifigures: The Series 19 Shower Guy has nothing on under his towel, but there's a lot of bubbles printed around his nether regions to obscure anything that may be seen.

    Video Games 
  • In the old CD-ROM game Babyz, censor suds will act as an inpromptu diaper after you take the baby out of the bath, and will go away only with the application of a fresh diaper.
  • Forget about seeing Censor Suds in Phantasy Star Nova, you can wear them as an outfit! ... After you craft them.
  • Geist has your character needing to possess a scientist who is taking a shower at the time you encounter her. Trying to catch a peek at her and her friends has their unmentionables covered in soap suds when they're not covered with towels.
  • One of the downloadable costumes in Gal*Gun 2 is this, where the girls are covered with patches of soap, with rings of it around their chests and waists. Exaggerated with the "underwear" of the costume, where the soap is reduced to nothing but small patches over the breasts and crotch.

    Visual Novel 

    Webcomics 
  • This entry from Cat vs. Human.
  • Brandi is seen like this in the shower in one Wapsi Square strip.
  • Ménage à 3 uses this trope as comedy and the strip's desired not-actually-pornographic rating demand — it's that sort of Sex Comedy. It's most dramatically and impressively demonstrated by Amber in strip #662 (October 23, 2012), which probably has to rate as NSFW, despite the fact that nothing is actually showing; similarly, Maura uses them to implausibly full effect in strip #1183 (June 16, 2016), and Tess does likewise in strip #1325 (July 22, 2017).
  • Red's modesty is preserved by suds in this Girls in Space strip.
  • A superhero comic by Chimneyspeak's author has (NSFW) a shower gel with "with censorship bubble™ placement technology".

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • At about 1:07 during this series of syndicated local-TV-movie openings.
  • In the SpongeBob SquarePants episode "Squid's Day Off", Squidward runs out of his bubble bath still naked, covered by bubbles, as they slowly pop one by one. Subverted afterwards as it turns out there is nothing to hide under the bubbles.
  • In Caillou, one episode shows Caillou's parents bathing him with suds covering his privates.
  • Invoked and then defied in the Futurama episode "Near-Death Wish", when Professor Farnsworth insists on giving a piece of backstory from the bath. Leela adds bubble bath so she and Amy can stand to look at him, but then he stands up, giving the audience a full view of his wrinkly behind.
  • In the Adventure Time episode "Blood Under the Skin", Finn must run past a series of people taking showers in a swamp, all of whom sport these.
  • Invoked the King of the Hill episode "DaleTech." Kahn, refusing to get a privacy hedge in front of his bathroom window, harasses Hank by showering in plain view of him. He makes what he calls a "sud bikini" from his soap, not out of modesty but to mess with him.


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