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Flaming Emblem

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Um, that looks cool and everything, Batman... but it might not have been a good idea.

A sub-trope of the Zorro Mark and often seen in works featuring a Super Hero, this trope occurs when a character recreates their logo or Chest Insignia using fire. Often, this is in concert with a Dynamic Entry. The Big Bad believes the hero is dead, only to see a flame spreading in the distance, eventually creating the hero's emblem just before he flies through the window. Sometimes, it is actually used at the end of a Climactic Battle where the hero sets the fire to reveal he is victorious. There are other variations but the effect is the same.

The reason for this is mostly Rule of Cool. Seeing the hero's emblem rising up in flames looks really exciting. This causes some Fridge Logic, however when the viewers wonder how and why the hero set the fire beforehand, to say nothing of the potential public safety hazard.

Not to Be Confused with Fire Emblem.


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    Comic Books 

  • Fantastic Four:
    • Johnny Storm a.k.a. the Human Torch frequently creates the Fantastic Four's emblem as a summons to the rest of the team when trouble arises.
    • The other members of the team have a Flare Gun for the same effect, creating a large, flaming "4" to summon the rest of the team.
      Susan: Reed's signal! It means come a-running, no matter what!

    Fan Works 
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows: How the chapter "Return to New York" ends. When the Turtles return to the Krang-occupied New York and reunite with the Hamato Clan, Kasumi, and Splinter, they, at Mikey's suggestion, set a turtle shell-shaped fire on top of the Channel 6 building to let everyone know they, and the city's hope of beating Krang, have returned. The writer confirms that the scene was inspired by the The Dark Knight Rises example below.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Eric Draven of The Crow does this when he kills T-Bird, one of the leaders of Top Dollar's gang and the third target of his Roaring Rampage of Revenge, using explosives and gasoline to turn T-Bird's own car into a bomb. When the car explodes, a trail of flames spreads across the pier in a pattern created by Draven's accelerant, creating the crow emblem. This is an interesting case in that the character does not really have an emblem in-universe. The emblem was used in marketing and the film's logo.
  • In Daredevil (2003), the title hero apparently drew his famous "DD" emblem in gasoline and let it set at a crime scene, knowing that someone would flick a cigarette on the ground and set it off. Pretty impressive, given that he's blind.
  • The Dark Knight Trilogy:
    • While it never occurs in the film, the poster for The Dark Knight has a bat-symbol engulfed in flames on the side of a building. Unlike most examples, it's probably referencing the destruction brought by the Joker.
    • In The Dark Knight Rises, when Batman returns to Gotham, he sets a bat-shaped fire on top of a bridge to let everyone know he has returned.
  • In The Mask of Zorro, when the second Zorro sets off on his mission, the first Zorro sets a fire along a hillside that creates the famous Zorro "Z" as a sign to the Big Bad that he has returned. That scene compromised half of the movie's advertising campaign. The other half was Antonio Banderas cutting Catherine Zeta-Jones' top off.
  • In The Punisher (2004), after the title character kills an entire mob family, he purposefully sets off a chain of bombs around a parking lot that creates his skull emblem.
  • The Title Sequence of V for Vendetta does this. V also forms his logo in fireworks explosions twice in the film, near the beginning and at the end.

  • In the music video for Chamillionaire's "Ridin'", he's standing on a blacktop in front of a flaming version of his logo.
  • In "Weird Al" Yankovic's parody of the above, "White and Nerdy", the flaming logo is of Pac-Man.

    Professional Wrestling 

    Video Games 


    Web Original 
  • This Atomic Think Tank post gives a Mutants & Masterminds description of the Fantastic Four signal flare (see above under comics), and says they've been adapted for use by the Avengers and X-Men. It also adds that some heroes have discovered you can deactivate the ignition and point the chemicals at the ground or a wall, then dramatically light it later, as in the scene from the Daredevil movie.

    Western Animation 
  • Mocked in Robot Chicken's parody of Daredevil (2003) when Daredevil visits the site hours earlier just so he can meticulously set up his "flaming Ds" with gasoline. However, a homeless man points out that the gas will simply evaporate, so Daredevil settles on Sterno instead.
  • Deconstructed in The Venture Brothers. While heading to Gargantua-2 using a rocket he stole from the Venture compound, the Monarch uses the rocket and some kerosene to leave a flaming version of his logo before he and 21 head off into space, with the flames coming from the logo eventually spreading and causing the entire compound to be burnt down.