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Eye Colour Change

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An Eye Colour Change is when a character's eyes change colour in response to some stimuli. The colour the eyes change into depends on the event and the character, but it can be anything from a shift in hue to something as dramatic as brown eyes turning bright yellow and round pupils lengthening into slits.

This is generally a sign that something major has just happened. A possession, a shift in alignment, the acquisition or activation of supernatural power (see also Magical Eye, if the power is directly tied to the eye), trauma, anything significant can trigger an Eye Colour Change. Being a robot (or a cyborg with Electronic Eyes) is also a common explanation.

Does not apply to an Adaptation Dye-Job; the eye color variant would be Sudden Eye Color. See also Convenient Color Change, Game Face, Eye Lights Out, and Demonic Possession. A frequent feature of Mind-Control Eyes, and often an Eye-Dentity Giveaway at showing who's in charge. Red Eyes, Take Warning sometimes happens here.

Not to be confused with Inconsistent Coloring, which is where a character's eyes may change colour due to a mistake, retcon on the artist's part, or due to shifting lighting conditions.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Black Butler, Sebastian's eyes are normally a caramel hue, unusual but close enough to brown to normally pass unremarked upon. But when he really means business, his eyes shift to a bright magenta with white flares and he gains Hellish Pupils.
  • In the Bleach anime, Ichigo's eyes change color while in his Hollow form. Not only are they now yellow, the white changes to black. He also tends to get glowing blue eyes sometimes, like he did right before beating Renji.
  • Claymore: The eyes of a Claymore are silver until they use their Yoma powers; this turns their eyes gold.
  • Death Note:
    • Misa Amane's eyes have a habit of this. Multiple times in the anime, her eyes change from brown to blue. It's because she wears blue contacts. There are also times when her eyes are red when she's using her Shinigami eyes to read people's names, but Word of God is that this is stylized.
    • The same thing happens for the other Death Note users with their eye color changing from their original color to red, primarily with the Villain Protagonist Light. His eyes are originally brown, but once he obtains his notebook, his eyes glow red whenever he goes into "Kira mode". The finale even shows his eyes are bright red instead of brown. Word of God is that this is Stylized for the Viewer and his eyes are always brown.
  • In Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, being turned into a demon in the setting always results in changes to their eyes, either by color or markings, but mostly color; commonly the color change is for the eyes, but some demons have the whole sclera change color too, while unique cases keep their eyes the color they had as a human but had their sclera change instead. One of the main characters, Nezuko Kamado, the once human sister of the series' protagonist Tanjiro Kamado had purple eyes with small pink highlights, it turned bright pink once she became a demon; Akaza, the Upper-3 demon of the Twelve Kizuki, had blue eyes as a human, as a demon his eyes turned yellow and the sclera dark blue; Kaigaku had blue eyes as a human, once he became a demon his sclera turned black but his eyes remained blue.
  • In Digimon Tamers, when Beelzemon makes his Heel–Face Turn, his eyes go from evil red to the green of his previous form, Impmon. (Interestingly, a Beelzemon in a later series is also the new form of a Heel–Face Turn character, but his eyes stay red. It may be because, unlike Impmon, this one's previous form naturally had red eyes.)
  • Dragon Ball Z:
    • A Saiyan's eyes turn greenish-blue when he turns Super Saiyan (although it's easily missable since the other effect of the transformation is much more visible).
    • Their irises also turn red when they start absorbing Bruitznote  Waves when they look at a full moon, as a prelude to the transformation to a Great Ape.
    • A Super Saiyan who has ascended to Super Saiyan Godhood gains red eyes to go with red hair. When the Super Saiyan God goes Super Saiyan, the eyes go back to turquoise, with the hair also matching.
    • Android 21 of Dragon Ball FighterZ has this whenever her evil side takes full control, having red-ring irises on a black sclera just like Super Buu. Significantly, Good 21 retains her normal blue eyes when in her Buu form, showing that she's in control as well as allowing the audience to tell the two apart.
  • Inuyasha: Both the title character and his half-brother, Sesshoumaru, have eyes that go completely bloodshot-red when their demonic powers are fully released. However, Inuyasha's eyes also change colour according to whether he is in human (black), normal (gold), or youkai (red) form, because he's a Half-Human Hybrid whose human side is fully expressed during a new moon and whose demon side is fully expressed when he pushes his own natural powers to their limits (in which case, good luck getting him to restrain himself to attacking only the bad guys.)
  • Kagerou Project: Every character's eyes (which are normally either brown, yellow, or pink) turn red when they're using their Eye Powers. In some cases, their pupil also becomes a slit (even if they're usually drawn without one). A more serious example comes when the usually pink-eyed Konoha's eyes become yellow with slit pupils. It (along with the rest of his costume turning black) signals that he has been taken over by the Wide-Eyes Snake and become Kuroha.
  • Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS:
    • Subaru Nakajima's eyes are normally green, but turn gold when she enters full Combat Cyborg mode. The first time this is triggered on screen, it also coincides with Unstoppable Rage.
    • Anyone who uses a Unison Device has their eyes turn very light blue while Unison-ed. It's also usually accompanied by their hair turning a much lighter shade.
  • The Misfit of Demon King Academy: Emilia Lud(o)well's eyes get changed from pink to brown upon being resurrected as a half-demon. It serves to reflect her pride as a pure demon being shredded to pieces.
  • Naruto:
    • The Sharingan is a hereditary superpower of the Uchiha clan that allows for Awesomeness by Analysis and causes distinctive change in the eye when used; a more advanced version exists and has a different look. Both are unlocked by traumatic experiences.
    • A lot of characters change eye color to correspond with things such as Demonic Possession, unlocking their powers/going into Super Mode, or just giving off a killer vibe.
  • Pretty Cure
  • In Reborn! (2004), Tsuna's eyes are normally brown. However, when he goes into Dying Will Mode, they change into an orange-ish yellow.
  • The title character of Rurouni Kenshin changes eye colour to correspond to which Split Personality is in command in the anime.
  • When Hakkai from Saiyuki removes his Power Limiters, his eyes change to golden catlike ones... or rather, only the left one does; the right one is artificial, made to match the other one while in human form, and therefore remains green with a round pupil. The result is somewhat unsettling, preserving a trace of Hakkai's original human self even when he taps into his demon powers.
  • When Lina Inverse of Slayers fame is possessed by the Lord of Nightmares in the end of Slayers NEXT, her eyes, normally red, appear golden.
  • In Sword Art Online, Kirito's pupils change color to gold (or maybe yellow?) when he gets really serious and pulls out all the stops.
  • In Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, humans who channel enormous Spiral Power have spirals appear in their eyes. This is seen mostly in Lordgenome, but also briefly in Kittan right before his death. Simon's eye also changes during the Giga Drill Break war with the Anti-Spiral after Lordgenome's sacrifice, as well as during the Distant Finale.
  • The eyes of NEXT in Tiger & Bunny typically change to a bright, glowing blue when they activate their abilities. This isn't the case for all of them, however — NEXT with passive abilities don't have an eye color change, the eyes of the two NEXT in Ouroboros glow orange-yellow, and Kotetsu's eyes have recently started turning red to go along with his Power Incontinence.
  • In Tokyo Ghoul, this is one aspect of a Ghoul's Game Face. Their eyes transform from completely normal to black schlera and red irises, an indicator of their true nature known as "kakugan" (which just means "red eye").
  • Downplayed in Tropical-Rouge! Pretty Cure: When the Cures transform, half of their eyes turn a different colour. For example, when Manatsu transforms into Cure Summer, a heart-shaped portion of her green eyes turn pink.
  • In Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE-, a vampire's eyes turn gold when they sense blood or are using their powers. Fai experiences this when he is turned into a vampire to save his life.
  • In Yumeria, Neneko has violet/purple eyes, but when mental time traveler Neito takes control of their shared body, they turn green.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! GX: Judai's normally brown eyes become Supernatural Gold Eyes when his Superpowered Evil Side the Supreme King takes him over and heterochromia when he accesses Yubel's power after fusing with them.

    Asian Animation 

    Comic Books 
  • In Afterlife Inc, Jack Fortune's eyes were blue before he died, and golden afterwards. Quite what this means is a mystery.
  • When Tigress hijacks Flare's body in the hope of learning about Teresa's mother, Teresa's eyes change from blue to green.
  • In The Incredible Hulk, Bruce Banner's brown eyes turning an unnatural shade of green is a common prelude to him Hulking Out.
  • In an Inspector Canardo comic, Alexandra's orange eyes change to white when she's heartbroken from seeing her father, who she wanted to believe was a good person, execute a village of starving circus people.
  • Similarly, the Justice Society of America relaunch had a plot point where it was revealed that after Kendra Saunders (the current Hawkgirl) had attempted suicide and been revived, her eyes mysteriously changed from green to brown. This is chalked up to Kendra's soul actually departing and her aunt Shiera taking residence in her body, thus changing Kendra's eye color to what hers (Shiera's) had been.
  • Norman Osborn's eyes change from brown to green when he's using the Green Goblin powers. In The Pulse, this is what first makes Daily Bugle reporter Terri Kidder realize something is very wrong.
  • In the final arc of Sonic the Comic, Sonic's eyes turn permanently green after he's attacked by Chaos.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics) explained Sonic's redesign as being due to external forces. His eyes changed colours from black to green.
  • The '90s Supergirl comic had Linda Danvers suspecting something was off when she saw that her eyes permanently changed from brown to blue, after being rescued from a certain death by a cult. It's because she WAS dying, and the Matrix version of Supergirl merged with her, causing some of her features to wind up reflected in Linda.

    Fan Works 
  • Abraxas (Hrodvitnon): In this Godzilla: King of the Monsters (2019) fanfiction, Vivienne Graham retains her original hazel eye color from when she was human, but she experiences full-blown Red Eyes, Take Warning when she's sufficiently enraged and Monster X's powers fully activate.
  • Another Life: Describing the difference between an Author Avatar and her creator, the story states that the former's eyes change color depending on her mood, while the latter's are always the same dull shade.
    "Sarillenne's eyes are bright golden yellow, but they will sometimes turn green when she is happy, or ruby-red when she is angry. Sara's eyes are dull, greyish brown, no matter how angry she gets at the wall-to-wall rejections that make up her life."
  • In Austraeoh, it's repeatedly mentioned that Rainbow has ruby eyes, despite her eyes being magenta in the show. It's eventually revealed to be because she's carrying the chaos of Discord inside her, and if her Element of Loyalty is removed, they turn yellow with red pupils like his were.
  • The Butcher Bird: Grigori Vinci's eyes go from green to gold after implanting himself with the King's Heart.
  • Child of the Storm: This happens a lot.
    • The colour Harry's eyes are glowing is basically an indication of his mental state:
      • Solid gold is fine, though you should possibly be wary — he's accessing his psychic abilities, seriously if they do more than just flash gold briefly.
      • If they go red, he's either been possessed by Chthon or enslaved by the Red Room. Either way, you should run.
      • If they go solid white, like, heart of a star white, he's been possessed by the Phoenix or has gone Dark Phoenix of his own volition, and you should find another galaxy to run to.
    • Jean Grey's eyes go amber-red under similar circumstances or when Harry is accessing the Phoenix.
    • And Maddie's eyes go bluish-white under the same circumstances.
    • Carol's go solid green when she's wielding Alan Scott's Green Lantern ring.
    • Thor's eyes go electric blue when he's really pissed off.
    • Like Harry, Gravemoss' eyes go red when he's possessed by Chthon.
  • Ebony Dark'ness Dementia Raven Way vs. Canon: As said in the second chapter of Sapphire Eleanor Rose Suzette de Mont vs Canon: Sapphire's eyes somehow change color every day:
    Ginny: Morning, Sapph—weren't your eyes blue yesterday?
    Sapphire: They change color every day.
  • Everything Turns to Gold:
  • Fantasy of Utter Ridiculousness: Alice Margatroid's eyes shift from a calm blue to a bright yellow when she's struggling to keep her more severe emotions in line, which is usually whenever Marisa or Coop are present.
  • Guys Being Dudes: According to Arlo, his eyes used to be blue before turning red after he finished his work on the first Shadow Pokemon. It's backed up by a picture from before he joined Team GO Rocket, but it's unclear if his eyes turned red due to corrupted XM exposure or if he's wearing colored contacts.
  • The Heart Trilogy: Kathryn, the main heroine, was born with her father's golden brown eyes. However, when she had her first vision at the age of six as a Seer, her eyes turned permanently purple. When she dies at the end of Heart of Fire, her eyes gain the color of molten gold. When she's resurrected at the beginning of Heart of Ashes, her eyes remain golden because her connection to Raw Magic is damaged. Once Smaug fixes this, she regains her purple eyes.
  • How To Drill Your Way Through Your Problems: Taylor's eyes change from brown to blue after she triggers.
  • The Infinity League: Miranda's eyes would change colour when she activates her power. And now, so do the other characters' eyes when they use theirs.
  • it's about the bones: Gideon's necromantic potential awakening as a baby was marked by her eyes turning from gold to black-in-white, like God's. Then when she made Harrow into a Lyctor, Harrow got those same eyes, which confused everyone to no end.
  • Justice Society of Japan: Happens to Kallen early
  • The Portal: Thomas Smith, who normally has brown eyes, gains blue eyes when he becomes a dragon.
  • Sonic the Continuation: Amy's eyes changed from brown to green after coming into contact with Chaos energy.
  • Red Sadie: In Ruby Stars, Sadie's eyes permanently change from green to red after Kay's gemstone melds back into her.
  • The Touch of Green Fire: It's shown that Shego wasn't born with green eyes. When she received her powers (which changed her skin to green), her eyes changed from their natural blue to green. Her eyes changing back to blue are a symptom of her power-draining illness.
  • Trade Winds: Using Eagle Vision causes the user's irises to gain a glowing golden ring around the outside, which is how the Chinese delegation realized, in the dark, that Desmond Miles has the prized, allegedly-for-royalty-only "Dragon's Eye", as they call it. Nobody else who isn't in the know seems to notice this — but it's possible only those with the Eagle Vision ability can see it —and when dragons use their Eagle Vision, this doesn't happen to their eyes.
  • Venturian Tale: Johnny Ghost's eyes are often portrayed as turning bright red when he turns into Jimmy Casket.

    Film — Animation 
  • In the BIONICLE films, Vakama's Face–Heel Turn and subsequent Heel–Face Turn are represented by his orange eyes turning sickly green, and back. Roodaka, who leads Vakama astray in the first place, has blue eyes that go red when she's angered.
  • Bruno Madrigal from Encanto. Whenever he is using his power to see the future, his eyes change into a jade green.
  • My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Rainbow Rocks: Adagio's eyes briefly flash green at one point when the Dazzlings are at the height of using their song to pit the students against each other. The eyes of their victims likewise flash green on occasion.
  • In Operation: Z.E.R.O., the Delightful Children from Down the Lane lose their blue Mind-Control Eyes when they are temporarily un-Delightfulized and revert to their old selves, the lost and legendary Sector Z. Numbuhs 0.4 and 0.3 have dark brown eyes, 0.2 has green ones, and 0.1's are dark blue. Numbuh 0.5 wears sunglasses that obscure her eyes, but it can be assumed that they too turned back to normal.
  • Rise of the Guardians
    • Happens to Sandy. When he is impaled by Pitch's black sand arrow, Sandy's pupils become darker and more prominent in response to the darkness consuming his body.
    • Jack Frost himself originally had brown eyes, but they became blue after he died and was turned into a snow spirit.
  • Mei Lee from Turning Red. Whenever she's in her red panda form, her eyes turn a fiery red to indicate she is angry. This appears to be a general feature of the red panda form: it also happens to her mother Ming.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • Alice in Wonderland (2010): The Hatter. Whenever he gets angry, his eyes go from a vivid green to a fiery orange, and that would be your cue to run.
  • In The Avengers (2012), Loki's staff changes people's eyes blue when he mind-controls them. On the DVD commentary, director Joss Whedon explains that this was actually something they added in post-production to make the difference between brainwashed characters and people acting under their own will clear, and so that there was a clear visual sign in Hawkeye when he finally broke out of it, which makes his teammates taking him back more understandable.
  • Blood Red Sky: Nadja's eyes change color when the meds holding her vampirism at bay start to wear off.
  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: In the middle of her giant blueberry transformation, Violet's eyes change from brown to blue as her cheeks swell up.
  • In the spoof film, Epic Movie, Mystique has mostly a normal blue eye color throughout her brief appearances, like her actress Carmen Electra. However, during the sex scene she has with the main character Peter, she says how she's a shape changer and can change her form into anything. She demonstrates this by changing her eyes to Yellow, with black pupils and dots surrounding it. However, it disappears for the next few shots, until they briefly revert back to Yellow when she says "Come Again?" They disappear again, and return as she starts to expand her body in a fat and flabby grandma with a monobrow at Peter's request. The inconsistent eye colors in this one scene is understandable as this film relies on Negative Continuity. It does the make the scene a lot more disturbing though...
  • Evil Dead (2013): Characters' eyes change color when they are possessed. Most notably, Mia's change color right before she tackles Olivia.
  • In The Lost Boys, vampires' eyes go from their natural colour to red when they transform into 'vampire mode'.
  • The Girl from The Ninth Gate (who is possibly the devil in human form) does this at several points, mostly when her Blood Lust gets going.
  • In The Shadow, Lamont Cranston/the Shadow's eyes turn silver whenever he's using his Psychic Powers.
  • Star Wars has the phenomenon of "Sith eyes", related to the Dark Side of the Force. They usually aren't permanent and usually manifest when the dark Force-user is enraged (Count Dooku, always calm and collected, never manifests themnote ). Only Darth Maul, who is more or less always belligerent, sports permanent Sith eyes. Though Emperor Palpatine/Darth Sidious sported permanent Sith eyes after being disfigured by his own Force Lightning.
  • Judge Doom from Who Framed Roger Rabbit has brown eyes up until he gets squashed by a steamroller, revealing him to be a toon, at which point his natural red eyes appear. This is also the point he stops being calm and collected and starts acting outright psychotic.

  • Aurora Cycle:
    • Auri's right eye turns permanently white when she uses her Eshvaren powers for the first time while conscious.
    • When Cat is infected by the Ra'haam pollen on Octavia III, the first visible sign is her eyes turning from brown to blue.
  • Black Jewels: Jaenelle Angelline's eyes turn from "summer-sky" blue to "sapphire" when she's in Witch mode.
  • The Brightest Shadow: Characters who become the Hero tend to have their eyes get lighter, eventually becoming unnatural white. It's ambiguous if their natural eye color becomes lighter, but it definitely appears white when the Hero is on a rampage.
  • In Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne, Valyn's eyes were originally brown. Then he is forced to go into the underground lair of some subterranean monsters and eat one of their eggs to cure himself of a paralytic poison, as part of an initiation ritual. He ends up consuming an abnormally large, black egg, and when he returns to the surface, he discovers that his eyes have turned jet-black.
  • The Chronicles of Ancient Darkness: After spirit-walking in trees in Oath Breaker, Torak gains tiny green flecks in his eyes. He loses them after the Thunderstar destroys much of the Forest, and regains them following the Rite that brings the First Tree back.
  • In the Codex Alera, the Marat people take on the eyes characteristic of the animal they take as a Bond Creature. In particular, in the first book, Kitai's eyes turn green when she bonds Tavi.
  • The Cosmere:
    • The Stormlight Archive
      • It is said that if a person with dark eyes wins a Shardblade their eyes will become light. In the first book, we only see one darkeyes with a Blade (Szeth), and they only turn pale blue when he is actively using the Blade. He notes that this is unique to his Blade, so the full situation remains unclear. It turns out that this is because Szeth is wielding an Honorblade, not a Shardblade.
      • In the second book, we get more detail. Yes, darkeyes permanently turn light once you've bonded with a Blade (which takes about a week). Full Radiants also have their eyes turn light; in fact, this process is what the Shardblades are mimicking. It seems to be the source of the Fantastic Caste System that ranks lighteyes above darkeyes.
      • The influence of Odium has also been shown to give spren and people red eyes, to the point that red eyes are seen as a mark of Voidbringers.
      • Interestingly, Radiants not only get lighter eyes, but may have a completely different eye color, as when Kaladin goes from dark brown to light blue eyes. Dead Shardblades, on the other hand, give a darkeyes a lighter version of whatever his original eye color was (Dark brown to gold/tan, for example).
    • In Shadows for Silence in the Forests of Hell, the ghostly Shades' eyes are a sign of the level of danger they pose. When calm, their eyes are the same misty white as the rest of them. If they glow green, it's a sign that they are alert and looking into the physical world. If they turn red, they're enraged and about to start using their Touch of Death on anyone nearby.
  • In Roger Zelazny's Dilvish, the Damned, some witches have eyes that wax and wane with the moon.
  • In the Discworld novel Mort, Death has glowing blue lights in his otherwise empty eye sockets. When Mort starts to become the new Death, his brown eyes turn blue.
  • Rachel from Cliff McNish's The Doomspell Trilogy has eyes that change colour depending on the spell she is using; these eyes are said to be a wizard trait.
  • In The Door Within Trilogy, the Glimpses eyes change colour depending on their affiliation: Blue for King Eliam, Red for Paragor, and Green for neutral/undecided.
  • In Dune, people exposed to the Spice Melange develop brilliant blue eyes. This includes the whites of their eyes turning blue, not just the iris. This is significant for a number of reasons: Mentats consume spice in order to increase the processing capacity of their brains, and their blue eyes are a sign of their super-human abilities. The Fremen inhabitants of Arrakis also develop the eyes due to their constant proximity to the spice. So when Paul Atreides' eyes turn blue, it symbolizes his transition into a Fremen warrior.
  • Eyes are often very important in Chris D'Lacey's The Last Dragon Chronicles. If it mentions someone's eye color more than once, it's a good bet that it has either changed or will change soon. Brown, blue, green, black, and violet are the most common.
  • The Locked Tomb:
    • Gideon the Ninth: A very unsettling example occurs with Ianthe, after she consumes Naberius's soul. Her eyes keep flickering between her natural eye colour and his, sometimes just becoming entirely pupil-less and white. It's implied that all Lyctors take the eye colour of the cavalier they consumed, as Cytherea's blue eyes are noted as being "someone else's fire," and Harrow refuses to look at her reflection in the epilogue after she's consumed Gideon's soul.
    • Harrow the Ninth: The eye colors are explained more; a proper Lyctor will have the eyes of their cavalier, but young Lyctors often have their eyes shifting seemingly at random, as the soul hasn't finished settling. Harrow still has her own eye color at all times, which is just the most obvious sign of how screwed up her transformation was. When Gideon wakes up in Harrow's body, Gideon has her own eyes, which are extremely distinctive. It also turns out that the Emperor's Black Eyes of Evil are actually his cavalier's eyes—he had perfected a way to become a Lyctor without killing his cavalier, letting her exist as a Lyctor in her own right (with his eyes), but he let his Lyctors believe that killing their friends was the only way. And then it turns out that the Saint of Duty and his cavalier, Pyrrha, have been Sharing a Body for ten thousand years because they basically did the same thing as Harrow and Gideon on accident; who is in charge of the body can be checked by the eyes.
  • Mages in the Heralds of Valdemar series who work with node magic will see their eyes gradually lighten to blue, and their hair turn white — powerful magic has a bleaching effect on its users. Companions, the series' signature white horse-shaped angels, are white and blue-eyed partially from genetics but also because they draw on node magic for their incredible speed and endurance.
  • In Hercule Poirot, when Poirot is very excited, his green eyes flicker and become steadily greener and greener.
  • InCryptid: All Johrlac have pure white eyes when actively using their telepathy (Sarah calls it a form of bioluminescence). They can still see fine, though focusing on both another mind and their surroundings at the same time can be difficult. The rest of the time, they have Occult Blue Eyes.
  • In the Inheritance Cycle, Solembum has these (and potentially the elves, if you count that they can use their magic to change their forms when they feel like it). In the first novel, he is stated to have red eyes. In the second, he has golden eyes. In the third, he has green eyes. In the fourth, he has blue eyes. This is even lampshaded by Eragon, who quips, "Weren't your eyes red?" which prompts Solembum to change his eyes back to red.
  • In Journey to Chaos, changing eye color or shape is characteristic of mana-born demons, signifying a shift from their sapient form to their monstrous one. Eric Watley has eyes whose pupils turn into slits, the eyes of Nolien Heleti turn entirely red and those of Kallen Selios turn from circles into triangles.
  • In Lightning Dust, the eponymous hero's eyes turn bright yellow from their normal blue when Klaus turns into him, while Daniel's sclera (the white part of the eyes) and pupils turn light and dark blue respectively when he becomes Crystal Eye.
  • In Magic to the Bone, Zayvion has Brown Eyes with flecks of gold... until he leaves the magic grid, whereupon they turn brown. When he drives back, his eyes turn pure gold with flecks of brown.
  • People Molly Moon hypnotizes will have their eyes turn a sickly green to match her own.
  • Rivers of London:
    • This might have happened to Nightingale as part of his Merlin Sickness: he's described as having grey eyes, but an old portrait of him Peter finds (which he assumes to be of Nightingale's father at the time) has blue eyes.
    • In Foxglove Summer, Zoe Thomas had her eyes permanently change from blue to hazel during her childhood run-in with the fairies that led to her baby half-sister being swapped out for a changeling (who was also her half-sister).
  • Oliver Twisted: Oliver's eyes turn silver when harnessing the warlock magic inside him which he calls "the Rage".
  • Septimus Heap: At the end of Magyk, Sarah Heap notices that Septimus' eyes are becoming green from exposure to Magyk when she identifies him as her child.
  • In The Seventh Tower, Icecarl women who become Crones have their eyes change colour three times as their magic grows: to vivid blue as apprentices, to luminous silver as full Crones, and to milky white as Mother Crones.
  • Sister Fidelma has blue eyes that sometimes flash green with her changeable moods. Atypical because hers is a historical fiction series with no hint of magic.
  • Tailchaser's Song: Eyeshimmer's eyes turn from his normal milky blue to a deep blackish-blue when he uses his far-senser powers.
  • The Twilight Saga: Vampirism causes a human's eyes to change color to bright red, as they enter the newborn phase. If newborns decide on an animal diet (like the Cullens do), they will eventually turn gold, but if they choose the human diet (as most vampires do), they will turn crimson.
  • The Water and the Wild: Oliver's eyes change colour to reflect his mood. It may be a byproduct of his keen, which allows him to change the skin colour of anyone he touches, but also causes them severe pain and gives them a mark that can take months to go away.
  • The Wheel of Time:
    • Users of the True Power develop black flecks swimming across their eyes as a result of overuse. With continued use, the flecks become more common and eventually transform the eyes and mouth into caverns of flame.
    • People who awaken as a wolfbrother have their eyes turn gold to match those of a wolf.
  • The Witchlands: The Sightwitches have their eyes turn silver when they are granted the gift of Sight by their goddess. The only two Sightwitches not to have the power, Ryber Fortiza and Eridysi Gochienka, also eventually gained silver eyes.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The 4400: In "Being Tom Baldwin", Isabelle makes her eyes green so that they will match the dress that Matthew Ross gave her.
  • In the later seasons of Babylon 5, Lyta Alexander's eyes would turn solid black whenever she made use of the Vorlon enhancements to her psychic abilities. However she became even more powerful in the Postscript Season, she acquires Glowing Eyes of Doom instead. Possibly because the black contacts used for the old effect were painful to wear.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • Whenever Willow makes intensive use of magic, her eyes abruptly turned pitch-black while closed. Then, in the series finale, when using the scythe to activate all the potential slayers, her eyes (and hair) turn white, hinting she is using powerful white magic.
    • When Willow buffs up Buffy with magic to fight Adam, Buffy's eyes turn gold/yellow.
  • At the end of the series finale of Daredevil (2015), Agent Ben Poindexter is undergoing a risky experimental procedure so he can walk again, which is shown to have caused his iris to change into a bullseye pattern, referencing his identity as Bullseye in the comics.
  • Doctor Who:
    • Leela's eyes are bleached permanently blue by a blinding explosion in "Horror of Fang Rock". Even though her vision later returns, her eye colour does not. This was a Written-In Infirmity (the actress hated the brown coloured contacts she had to wear as Leela and the production team decided to give her a break) but serves as something of a symbolic coming-of-age moment for her character, as the Doctor Pygmalioning her into a protegée has strikingly blue eyes.
    • When Rose absorbs the Heart of the TARDIS and becomes the Bad Wolf, her eyes turn golden. The same happens to the Moment when it assumes her human aspect.
    • The Ood gain Red Eyes, Take Warning whenever something else is directly controlling them. We eventually find the red eyes just represent their psychic network in action and normally isn't a sign of danger. In a much later episode, an Ood possessed the villain of the week has his eyes turn green.
  • In Fate: The Winx Saga, whenever the fairies use their powers, their eyes change color according to the element they possess (fire fairies get red-orange eyes, water fairies get steel blue eyes, mind fairies get purple eyes, and so forth).
  • In Forever Knight, vampires' eyes turn golden when they vamp out.
  • The Haunting of Bly Manor: After Dani is possessed by Viola, one of her eyes turns brown.
  • Haven: Duke's eyes turn a silver color when he touches (and then absorbs) Troubled blood, precipitating the Power High it gives him.
  • The Incredible Hulk (1977): When viewers see David's eyes turn green, it's confirmation that things are about to get smashed...
  • Interview with the Vampire (2022): When a human becomes a vampire, their eyes may change during the transition. Louis and Claudia's eyes were brown when they were mortal, but their vampiric irises are green and reddish-orange, respectively. However, this isn't a universal phenomenon because Antoinette retains her blue eyes (they're just a more vibrant shade of blue) after she's turned.
  • Jekyll and Hyde (2015): Robert Jekyll's eyes flash bright blue whenever he is bordering on or fully transforming into Hyde.
  • In the Kamen Rider franchise, the big, insectlike eyepieces of the Riders often change with the mode the suit is in. In a more sinister vein, they can also change with the mentality of the wearer if the powers present a hazard to his sanity (if a power-up is potentially a Superpowered Evil Side, and the Rider's eyepieces turn the color that represents that power source, you wanna be a few dozen counties over.)
  • In Legion (2017), Lenny's eyes are brown during her first life, but blue when she comes Back from the Dead, a fact that even throws Ptonomy, a mutant with perfect recall. It turns out that this is because she's in the body of David's murdered sister Amy, which has been reshaped to look like the old Lenny.
  • In Merlin (2008), Merlin's eyes turn brownish-gold when he uses magic.
  • In the Star Trek: The Original Series episode "Where No Man Has Gone Before" Gary Mitchell and Elizabeth Dehner both develop inhuman silver-colored eyes after the "energy barrier at the edge of the Galaxy" gives them a variety of psychic and telekinetic abilities.
  • Supernatural
    • Solid-coloured eyes are used to show demonic possession. Showing them, rather than the natural eye colour, is voluntary for the demon so it is used for shock value (both in-universe and for the audience). Low-level demons use black; more powerful ones get more colourful options such as yellow or white.
    • Angels will sometimes change the eye color of their vessel's body to a bright blue. Notably in season nine, Sam's eyes glowed blue when Gadreel took over, so it was easier for Dean (and the audience) to know who he was talking to. Though his vessel's eyes are blue to begin with, Castiel tends to pull out the glowy version as an intimidation tactic.
  • Zig-zag: On a 1974 telecast of the game show Tattletales, panelist Harvey Korman represented the blue section and liked it since he said his podium matches his eyes. Guest host Gene Rayburn looked closer and said Harvey's eyes were green. Harvey, in Paul Lynde's voice, spluttered, "Oh, go away! They're blue!"
    Harvey Korman: [aside] Why am I talking like Paul Lynde??
  • Eye color is a key part of the werewolf mythology in Teen Wolf. Alphas have red eyes, and betas have either orange or blue eyes.


    Video Games 
  • Everyone in Digital Devil Saga originally had uniform grey eyes with no pupils. Their eye colours change when they awaken to their emotions to match their hair.
  • Fallen London: Minor examples pop up every now and then, and usually mean bad news. But the one established example is among Monster-Hunters, who are among the most dangerous men alive, and hunt down zee monsters for a living. The initiation ritual is to find and slaughter one of the really ferocious ones, and eat from it. This'll change their eyes to a deep Peligin and tends to alter them in other unclear ways.
  • In Fire Emblem: Three Houses, Byleth's eyes turn from blue to green along with their hair upon receiving Sothis's power.
  • Five Nights at Freddy's: Sister Location: Circus Baby presently has green eyes, but if notice, she has blue eyes in the 8-bit minigame. She originally had blue eyes, but they turned green after she accidentally trapped the green-eyed Elizabeth Afton within herself.
  • Throughout Kingdom Hearts, eyes change color to an orange-gold whenever someone gets too close to the darkness, or if they're a vessel for Xehanort.
    • Braig's eyes change from brown to gold, after he becomes part-Xehanort.
    • Terra's eyes go from blue to orange when Master Xehanort possesses him.
    • Xehanort's eyes go from orange to brown and back again during the year he spends amnesiac.
    • Ansem the Wise's eyes change to gold after he embraces the power of darkness.
    • Riku's eyes start changing color during the time between Chain of Memories and Kingdom Hearts II, since he still has part of Xehanort's Heartless inside him. They go back to their normal color once he's blasted by the light of Ansem's Kingdom Hearts Encoder exploding.
    • Isa's eyes went from blue to orange at some point after Birth by Sleep, because he's being taken over by Xehanort as well.
    • Aqua's blue eyes become orange when she is briefly claimed by the darkness and turns into Anti-Aqua. They return to blue after she is purified.
  • In Mass Effect 3, any biotics that don't already have blue eyes get them briefly, along with a subtle glow, when they use their powers. Shepard also gets glowing green eyes when they look at Prothean footage in the From Ashes DLC.
  • In Mega Man X: Command Mission, Shadow's eyes change from blue to red after he pulls off his Face–Heel Turn.
  • Koyuki Saito/Little Snow from Idea Factory's Neverland franchise had brown eyes and hair before being pulled from Earth to Neverland. After becoming an Alien Soul, her hair turned white and her eyes went pure blue.
  • In Puyo Puyo Tetris 2, Marle is introduced with golden eyes. They change to blue once she is freed from Squares' manipulation.
  • Nanashi's eyes in Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse were originally brown/grey, but after dying and making a contract with Dagda, his eyes turn bright green to show how he's a corpse animated by Dagda's magic. They change color again in both of the true endings; on Bonds, they return to their original color since Dagda released him from the deal and fully restored him to life. On Massacre, they turn gold, matching YHVH's faces, to show how he replaced him as Creator God.
  • In Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic's eyes are normally green, but when he goes Super Sonic, they turn red.
  • While you can choose what color Agent 3's irises are in Splatoon 2: Octo Expansion, when they get partially sanitised their irises gain the same sickly cyan color that all other sanitised creatures have, as well as gaining a strange aperture-like pattern.
  • When Faize from Star Ocean: The Last Hope gets subjected to a lot of stress, his LEGO Genetics causes him to unconsciously suppress it. This gets shown with his eyes turning red.
  • In Super Mario Odyssey anything Captured by Mario, regardless of what it is, will take on Mario's blue eyes, in addition to gaining his mustache.
  • Tales Series
    • In Tales of Symphonia, Colette's blue eyes turn red when she loses her soul; they return to blue when she gets it back again. In the anime adaptation her eyes turn green when she is possessed by Martel.
    • In Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World, Emil's normally green eyes turn red whenever his "Ratatosk-mode" personality is in control (usually during battle only). When we first see him, his eyes are gray, because he hasn't invented a personality yet.
  • Miitopia:
    • Certain enemies have skills that cause their eyes to turn gold momentarily, such as the Dark Lord's face steal, the Medusas' stone, and the Imp and Queens' spite. Vampire Miis also get this effect when using their Bite and Enthrall skills.
    • A Mii's eyes will turn red when affected by the Vampire Mii's Enthrall.
    • When a Mii is turned evil by the Spite status effect, their eyes turn red with black sclerae.
  • In Warcraft elf eyes operate this way. Their eyes are pupilless and glowy. Depending on the type of magic they are surrounded with, their eyes are different colors (different colors are habitually associated with the different types of magic). This is the only physical difference between the High Elves and the Blood Elves, who are actually just factions with different ideologies and not different races. High Elves have blue eyes since they cut themselves off from the corrupted Sunwell. Blood Elves have green eyes reflecting the corruption of the Sunwell, although some are starting to have golden eyes now that the Sunwell has been restored. Night Elves normally have silver eyes, although rare males are born with golden eyes which they believe marks them for a special destiny (and at least in the case of Illidan Stormrage, this seems to be true). Nightbourne meanwhile have lavender eyes, reflecting the Nightwell's peculiarly colored magic.
    • The Undead sort of fall into this trope: though in their case it's more that their eyes are missing entirely. Same for the Demon Hunters. The color comes from the magic that they are filled with. In something of a subversion, this doesn't particularly say anything about their philosophical inclinations, however.
    • Canonically, if a character is channeling a lot of magical power their eyes start to glow showing that the power has filled up their soul. The different magics have different philosophies associated with them, to some degree. Though not to the point where the type of magic someone wields indicates their political alignment or anything. But it is to the point where certain races either cannot or will not engage with certain types of magic.
  • In Xenosaga KOS-MOS's normally red eyes turn blue when the hidden soul of Mary Magdalene-yes, THAT Mary Magdalene-takes over her body. Notably, they turn blue when she uses the hitherto unknown X-Buster to absorb the Gnosis, when she saves the Elsa from burning up in the atmosphere, and two times when she saved Shion and Allen, Shion only finding out about this part of KOS-MOS the second rescue.

    Visual Novels 

    Web Animation 
  • RWBY
    • Yang has violet-coloured eyes under normal circumstances. However, when she gets angry, her eyes turn a vivid shade of red. It's also a sign that her Semblance is active, but she normally only activates her Semblance whenever she's angry. Her father has baby blue eyes and her mother has vivid red eyes, so her default violet eyes are mid-way in colour between her parents, while her vivid red transformation makes her look very similar to her mother.
    • Neopolitan has tri-coloured hair; the left half is brown, and right half pink with white streaks. Her natural eyes are pink (left) and brown (right), but her Semblance allows her to change her appearance at will. She can flit between any eye colour and combination of colours based on mood or disguise. She's played with pink/brown combinations, had white eyes when fleeing Raven in fear, and used green, purple, blue colours with different disguises. In Volume 8, she disguises herself as Nora when stealing the Relic of Knowledge; she uses Nora's turquoise eyes to take advantage of Ren's feelings for Nora; he freezes up in shock and horror, allowing her to knock him down; it leaves him in tears.
    • Oscar has heterochromia iridum; his eyes are predominantly green, but a faint yellow circle borders the pupils, and the green irises contain a segment of solid brown. He has the ability to do what Qrow describes as a "parlour trick"; upon activating the ability, the yellow bordering his pupils flash, visibly filling his irises with a solid gold that flares like light before appearing to fade back to their normal colour. However, for as long as the ability is active, his reflection will reveal that his eyes are still solid gold. Ozpin was cursed thousands of years ago to walk the earth for as long as Salem remains a threat; instead of dying, his soul, Aura, memories, and abilities hop to a new host. Oscar is Ozpin's latest host and the brown speck in his green eyes is the same shade as Ozpin's brass-coloured eyes; when he lets Ozpin take control of his body, his body pulses and his eyes turn gold.
  • Spooky Month: Anyone who looks at the Eyes of the Universe, such as Pump or the Hatzgang, gain big, teal eyes until the Eyes leave their sight. Interestingly, when the demon Moloch threatens Skid and Pump during "Unwanted Guest", Pump's eyes turn teal again and stay that way until Moloch dies.
  • SuperThings:

  • Aurora: Alinua's eyes used to be gray and glowed green when using magic. After overloading and coming into contact with the Life Primordial they are green all the time.
  • Charby the Vampirate: Zeno's eyes change from yellow to glowing red when he is possessed and controlled by the wraith.
  • El Goonish Shive: While it has not been explicitly seen yet, eye color change is mentioned as one of the potential side-effects of a "burnout", when a magic user uses too much magic, and temporarily loses access to their powers.
  • Grim Trigger: Tage's eyes have been shown as red instead of brown on three different occasions so far. First in the book 1 cover, second in book 3, and last in the credits for the 1000CC arc. The cause hasn't been explained yet, but whenever it happens, he looks incredibly distressed.
  • Hero Oh Hero: Someone looking at a menu has their eyes shift to the colour of the menu (with a picture of the menu hanging in mid-air for the audience's benefit). Secretary Wu-Cha also has her eyes flash different colours when she's using her Stat-O-Vision.
  • Homestuck:
  • I'm the Grim Reaper: Before becoming a reaper, Scarlet's eyes are a very human shade of dark brown/black. After becoming a reaper, they permanently turn bright red.
  • The Order of the Stick:
    • Spellcasters frequently display an eye color that matches that of their magic when casting a particularly powerful spell, or even just when they're very angry.
    • Roy's eyes occasionally flash green when channeling the green energy powers of his sword.
  • The Silver Eye: If a character’s eyes change colour, it's a sign that the character in question is descended from the Nedarians. This only happens in extreme cases, when they're experiencing emotion so intense that it lets their microscopic amounts of magic blood show through.
  • Sleepless Domain:
    • Every magical girl's eyes change to a vibrant and often exotic hue upon receiving the Dream that grants her powers, as does her hair. Both remain this color until the girl loses her powers, either naturally through aging or otherwise, at which point they return to their natural shades.
    • Series protagonist Undine Wells is an unusual case in that her eyes have changed color more than once. As an active magical girl, she initially has bright blue eyes, but her pupils become pink after her pink-themed teammate Tessa gives up her own power to save Undine's life.
    • Heartful Punch actually subverts this — unlike most girls, she was born with the cyan eyes she now has as a magical girl. This is because she was born to an active magical girl, and as a result, her mother's power was passed down to her.
  • The Sword Interval: Heroine Fall Barros was attacked by the Hierophant when she was twelve years old, and given Supernatural Gold Eyes as a result. This is actually a subversion. Fall is in fact the current Harbinger, and as such was born with the glowing golden eyes. However, the Atlas Foundation altered her memories (and last family photo) so she believed that she used to have brown eyes.
  • Violet Zombie: In life, Penelope Martinez's eyes had hazel-brown irises. Upon her resurrection as Penelope Mortinez, the irises are bluish-white, which is caused by loss of pigmentation after death.
  • The Witch's Throne: The girl that awakens as a Witch has her eye completely changed to purple and black.
  • Zoophobia: Zill's eyes go from purple to green when he uses his powers.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • 101 Dalmatians: The Series: The one-shot Rebecca from "Deville-Age Elder" has bright pink eyes for most of it, but when Spot frees her from the town's mindlessly happy curse, her eyes turn deep blue with visible catchlights.
  • The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius: In the Made-for-TV Movie "Attack of the Twonkies", the first sign of the Twonkies about to mutate from hearing music is their eyes turning completely black.
  • Amphibia: Anne's eyes sometimes become blue or even glow when she is in an emotional state. Her friend and fellow human Marcy has also been shown to have her eyes change color to green, and Sasha does the same with her eyes turning pink. Heavily implied to be caused by the Calamity Box that transported them to Amphibia.
  • The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes: In the episode 'Emperor Stark', when someone is under the control of The Purple Man, their eyes turn purple and return to normal color when they break free of his control.
  • The Batman: Ethan Bennett's eyes change from blue to green when he becomes Clayface.
  • Danny Phantom:
    • His human side has blue eyes, his ghostly Super Hero alter ego has green eyes, but whenever he turns evil (either Brainwashed and Crazy or meeting his evil alternate-future self), his eyes turn red. For further entertainment, if you make him angry or he has a sneaky idea when he's in human form, Danny's eyes will glow green. When his ice powers are in use when he's in ghost form, his eyes will glow blue.
    • When a person gets overshadowed by a ghost, the person's eyes will change to the same color as the ghost's. So anyone possessed by Danny gets his green ghost eyes.
  • El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera: The protagonist Manny Rivera has dark brown eyes, but when he transforms into El Tigre they turn emerald green with lighter green outlines.
  • Gravity Falls:
    • Mabel's eyes turn green when she's had too much Smile Dip.
    • Additionally, looking into the Gremloblin's eyes causes the eyes of two tourists to match the creature's bright yellow ones.
    • Whoever is possessed by Bill Cipher will have their eyes turn yellow with slitted pupils, or if their dreams are messed with, the eyes will turn blue and stream violently.
  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas!: The Grinch's eyes go from yellow with red irises to Innocent Blue Eyes after his Heel–Face Turn.
  • I ♡ Arlo: Arlo gets deep pink eyes when experiencing a sugar rush in Willow Button. Also when he is about to shed, his eyes turn pale blue and his pupils become faded.
  • Justice League introduced the idea of Green Lantern's eyes lighting up in green whenever he used his powers, which eventually found its way into comics.
  • Miraculous Ladybug: Adrien Agreste has normal human green eyes. When he transforms into Cat Noir, however, the sclerae become green, while the irises turn a slightly lighter shade of green and the iris becomes slitted, like a cat's.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • Luna has normal pony eyes, but when she's in her Nightmare Moon persona, she has reptile eyes with slit pupils.
    • In "A Canterlot Wedding", Shining Armor when Queen Chrysalis masquerading as Princess Cadance casts a spell to brainwash him. His eyes turn green and point in different directions. Additionally, Queen Chrysalis in the form of Princess Cadance upon casting Twilight into the dungeons at the end of part one. Her eyes flash blue-green, and her pupils turn reptilian.
    • In "The Crystal Empire", Twilight's eyes turn reptilian red with green scleras like King Sombra's when she is seeing her worst fear through the door he conjures.
    • In "Bats!", Fluttershy's teal eyes turn vermillion red when she turns into a bat-pony hybrid.
  • The Owl House:
    • In "Young Blood Old Souls", Eda and Lilith each have one of their eyes change color to grey after Lilith decides to share Eda's curse with her so that she won't be permanently stuck in her Owl Beast form.
    • Happens to Hunter in "Thanks to Them". After Belos leaves him in a weakened state from possessing his body and Flapjack makes a Heroic Sacrifice to save his life, Hunter's eyes turn a normal brown color instead of pink.
  • In Teen Titans (2003), this happens with several characters:
    • Raven's eyes glow white when she uses her powers. Occasionally, they glow red, which is a sign that you really need to run.
    • After her Next Tier Power-Up, Starfire's eyes glow green when she is angry or using her eyebolts.
    • Jinx's eyes glow pink while using her powers occasionally.
  • In Transformers: Prime, Megatron's eyes go from red to purple when he's using Dark Energon, indicating the substance's power and supernatural influence, and the nasty side effects it has on Megatron's mind.
  • PJ Masks: Amaya has light reddish-brown eyes, but when she transforms into Owlette, her eyes become pure red.
  • Winx Club:
    • Bloom's Dragon Flame powers manifest sometimes by having her eyes turn a glowing amber.
    • When Bloom is corrupted into Dark Bloom by Lord Darkar, her eyes turn yellow with cat pupils.
    • In Season 4 when Roxy is possessed by Nebula, her eyes turn an infernal red.
  • W.I.T.C.H.: When the Guardians are preparing to transform into their elements, Will's eyes glow white-blue as she shouts, "Guardians Unite!".


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Eye Color Change


Miitopia - Spite

This status effect causes a Mii's heart to be "dipped in darkness", turning them evil and tripping up their teammates, causing resentment.

How well does it match the trope?

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Example of:

Main / BrainwashedAndCrazy

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