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Forehead of Doom

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Ruth Adams: Did you notice this peculiar indentation in both their foreheads?
Tom Servo: (sarcastic) NO!

Many animated shows, especially Japanese ones, have a habit of giving a character (sometimes more than one) an over-sized forehead. For some reason, the character, even if their head is their Berserk Button, will always have it prominently displayed. Especially if it is a visual indicator of their hard-headedness, figuratively or literally. It will often be drawn as exaggeratedly shiny and, like cue ball characters, a common gag is to have others be literally blinded by the glare reflecting off their dome. This type of forehead could also be emphasized with the right hairstyle. Compare the less realistic My Brain Is Big.



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    Anime and Manga 
  • Moretsu Ataro:
    • The trope codifier in anime and manga is likely Dekoppachi, whose name (deko meaning forehead), greatest strength, and headstrong nature are all centered around his potato-shaped caricature of a forehead. Whether he is named after dekoppachi as a pejorative or made it one for the big-foreheaded is hard to tell at this point.
    • His side story gave him a younger sister named Deko-chan for the female equivalent.
  • AKIRA: Tetsuo. The psychic powers was just logical progression, really. While translated as "punk," Kaneda would call him "Dekosuke" (Forehead Boy), popularizing the insult.
    • It's mostly due to having his hair swept back in a really bad style, even before he started going Dragon Ball Z with it.
  • Berserk:
    • Pippin is a prominent male example since he has permanent wrinkle on his brow at all times.
    • Jill from The Lost Children's arc, her brow is literally bigger than Guts's forehead (the full grown adult man).
    • Isidro's Guts Kid Sidekick also has a huge forehead, it's probably safe to say Miura tends to draw most children with these especially in the later "cutesy" art-style.
    • But by far the biggest example is Sonia you could land a small plane on that noggin.
  • Rossiu in Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, known by Kamina as "Dekosuke." In Guren Gakuenhen, it stops a fight.
  • In Dragon Ball, many characters are drawn with large foreheads. This could be said to be a trait of Akira Toriyama's art-style in general.
    • Krillin, who had "Blind the enemy with the gleam off my cue ball" as one of his special attacks early on.
    • #18, #17 and #16 all have noteworthy foreheads. No wonder #18 married Krillin.
    • Also, one of the side effects of the Super Saiyan II and III stages is a bulging forehead. Especially noticeable in stage III, where the lack of eyebrows makes it look even bigger.
    • Vegeta's forehead takes up literally half of his face, and is paired with a widows peak. It even became a meme in Japan. His son Trunks inherited his big forehead, but thanks to his bowl cut hairstyle it's less noticable.
    • Freeza's final form has a rather prominent one.
    • Cell's black forehead seems to get bigger the more "perfect" he becomes.
  • Megaman NT Warrior has Yai Ayano. She can even utilize it to purposely blind others, even shouting "Yai Flash!" in later seasons.
    • The Ayanotech company logo is a profile of Yai's head with a star-shaped lens flare over the forehead.
  • Naruto:
    • Sakura Haruno, although hers was of more realistic proportions. Quite a few people tease her about it in-universe, though. Saying her forehead is "beautiful" on other hand, pushes all the right buttons for her.
    • Anime-only character Hotaru
    • Another Anime-only character is Suzumebachi.
    • Sakura's daughter, Sarada, also has her mother's forehead, which is the easiest way to tell who her mother is during the epilogue. Once she becomes a ninja in the sequel series, Sarada hides her's behind her headband.
  • Yue Ayase in Negima! Magister Negi Magi One of the OAVs had a scene which started as if it were looking at a character through a Fish-Eye Lens, only to pull back and show it was the reflection off Yue's forehead.
    • In the manga at least, characters remark on this, referring to her as "big forehead chibi" a few times. Chamo once even refers to her as the chick with the "Forehead of Doom".
    • Hakase Sotomi.
  • Miyako (pictured above) from Pani Poni Dash! has a forehead that's so noticeable and shiny that over the course of the series, it has shown to do the following:
    • Reflect the sunlight and focus it into beams of energy that set things on fire like a Kill Sat.
    • Give instant suntans
    • May require sunglasses to view directly.
    • Can act as a police spotlight when chasing after a criminal at night.
    • Can easily get wedged and stuck in tight spaces.
    • In the first episode, it gets used as a grooming mirror by Himeko. That's just the tip of the iceberg too.
  • Ritsu from K-On! The animators won't let us forget it.
  • Miya from Koi Koi 7. Much fun was had on NicoVideo when the camera focused on her forehead for a few seconds.
  • Eriko from Maria Watches Over Us has a prominent forehead, accentuated by her headband.
  • Ayano of Lucky Star has this.
  • This trait comes up more than a few times in fan art and doujins of Tsuruya from the Haruhi Suzumiya series.
  • Yukimitsu of Eyeshield 21, mostly due to him being somewhat balding.
  • Taiki aka Sailor Star Maker, according to the Sailor Moon fandom. This is because he/she is one of the few main characters to not have bangs.
  • One Piece:
    • Most female characters in One Piece have a large forehead,
    • Not commented on, but Boa Hancock has a rather large forehead, even taking her swept to the sides hair style into account.
    • To be fair to all the ladies, at least they don't have foreheads like Zoro so big you can literally see the grooves of his skull. Sanji occasionally calling him "meathead" is actually quite appropriate.
  • Sonoko Suzuki from Detective Conan , but wasn't something discussed upon.
  • In Petite Princess Yucie, the main heroine Yucie was often teased by Arc for her large forehead. Arc gave her the nickname "Forehead" and he often kisses it as well.
  • Madoka Midou in Starship Girl Yamamoto Yohko.
  • Lamica in the Vampire Hunter D OVA.
  • Fukiyose Seiri in A Certain Magical Index. Bonus points for using a headbutt as her Megaton Punch.
  • Haruka Suzushiro of My-HiME has a large forehead, and in the manga, is sensitive to being called "Debochin" ("Forehead").
  • Mukuro of Reborn! (2004). Not that it makes him any less of a Bishōnen however.
  • Both Masako and Himari in Penguindrum. Lampshaded in episode 19, where Masako confronts Himari in regards to Kanba... and their foreheads shine as they talk. It's... distracting.
  • Els Tasmin of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha ViVid, whose big forehead is a Berserk Button that Harry likes to push.
  • Tsubaki of Future Diary.
  • Asahi Kuromine from My Monster Secret was designed this way so that his hair wouldn't block or distract from his expression, making him easier to read. His sister, Mei, makes fun of him for this despite having one herself.
  • Athrun Zala from Mobile Suit Gundam SEED and Mobile Suit Gundam Seed Destiny has a large shiny forehead which is made fun of in the "Gundam Character Theater", the comedy Super-Deformed shorts.
  • Yoriko Tajima from Arachnid has a swept up hair style which she is sometimes teased for. Bonus doom points for being a mean delinquent and a secret crime lord.
  • Riko Saikawa from Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid stylizes her her hair in such a way that only half of her forehead is like this. She also has an omnipresent highlight that blinds one of her classmates during her introduction in the manga. When her best friend Kanna makes a candle based off of her face as part of a school project, she positions the wick in such a way to reproduce the highlight.
    Kanna: A shiny forehead is fundamental for her.

    Card Games 
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh!, the card Ash Blossom and Joyous Spring, her massive forehead isn't helped by her receding hair. Became an incredibly popular joke amongst players; not helped by the fact almost every single deck in the metagame played the maximum three copies of the card.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In This Island Earth, the first clue that Exeter and Brack are aliens is their oversized foreheads. Mike and the 'bots do not let this pass without comment.
  • The 1920 film version of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (starring John Barrymore) had Hyde develop a monstrously large forehead with the hair sitting on top rather like a cap and then dangling down to emphasis the scalp. The character would wear a top hat and then slowly pull it off to reveal the ongoing forehead.
  • Anthony Hopkins makes best use of his as Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs, particularly in his last meeting with Clarice wherein as he probes her for details of her worst memory the camera focuses closer and closer on his lowered head, pale blue eyes glowering from under a hugely emphasised forehead.
  • Pennywise in It (2017) has a downright bulbous (and cracked) forehead to go with his Uncanny Valley look. Much like Hannibal, it helps him pull off the Kubrick Stare.
  • Loki in the Marvel Cinematic Universe has a prominent forehead, courtesy of Tom Hiddleston. Further emphasized by his slicked-back black hair.


    Live-Action TV 
  • Angel is frequently referred to as "Captain Forehead". Nina, on learning that he wasn't human, guessed "Frankenstein" to Angel's annoyance.
  • Jeff on Community is self conscious about this.
    Jeff: (looking at a "Wanted!" Poster depicting him) My forehead is not that big, right?
    (Britta shrugs a bit hesitantly)
    Troy: It's not small.

    Jeff: (looking at a doll version of himself) Oh, come on! My forehead is not this big!
    (everyone else in the room avoids eye contact with him)
  • Frasier Crane has this; lampshaded when Carla in one episode of Frasier where the Cranes travel to Boston, only to attend Cliff Clavin's retirement party, she comments "I forgot how big your head is."
  • Seinfeld: Elaine Benes was called "big-head" by a bad date. She brushed it off until a pigeon crashed into her head.
  • Gina Waters' big head was a running gag on Martin. Thanks to the magic of TV genetics, she passed the trait on to her son on My Wife and Kids.
  • In the final episode of Red Dwarf's sixth series 'Out of Time', Lister (who have been locked in his quarters along with rimmer and the Cat on receiving contact from their future selves to protect them from the psychological harm knowing their future may cause) observes the future-crew's arrival by camera to see what happens to him (Kryten, having failed to cover up the fact something horrific had happened although refusing to specify). The glare off future-Cat's bald head obscures his view.
  • The Emergency Medical Hologram from Star Trek: Voyager has a shiny bald head, lampshaded in one episode when the Doctor becomes a celebrity on an alien planet and insists that the ship's engineer B'Elanna Torres design an opera house for him.
    B'Elanna: What's wrong with the sight lines?
    EMH: If you consider the height of the average Qomar, it's obvious that anyone seated in the back five rows will have an obstructed view!
    B'Elanna: You're right. They won't be able to see anything but the top of your head. The glare could blind them!
  • Patsy in Absolutely Fabulous has apparently been hiding one of these behind the bangs of her Beehive Hairdo. When they were forcibly pushed back, her forehead emitted enough glare to blind everyone around the table they were sitting at.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Pablito might be the smallest wrestler in World Wrestling League, but he's also got one of the most prominent foreheads.
  • Johnny Kwango, a staple of the great age of British TV wrestling, was also famous for this, and the head butt was his signature move.

    Video Games 
  • Cammy White from Street Fighter, though it makes sense since she's more militaristic than feminine.
    • Ibuki is another example. Yun even rags on her about this in SSFIV:AE/USFIV:
    Girl, your forehead's so big it's a fivehead!
  • Yai in Mega Man Battle Network, especially the anime adaptation.
  • Yoshitaka Amano, the longest-running artist for Final Fantasy. No matter how pretty the characters are, they tend to have huge foreheads
  • Apollo Justice in his eponymous game. Klavier Gavin, the opposing attorney, refers to him as "Herr Forehead" (Mr. Forehead). Mind you, the name started with a forehead-related piece of evidence, but it fits nonetheless.
    • Maggey Byrde also has a large forehead and is known as the "Goddess of Misfortune".
  • Chris Redfield from the Resident Evil has a particularly pronounced forehead that he keeps in all his portrayals.
    • Chris Arch-Enemy Albert Wesker also has pretty wide forehead helped by the fact his sunglasses cover his brows.
    • Jill Valentine in RE3 has a pretty spacious forehead that her fringe can't hide, in other games she simply wears her hair lower.
  • Blue Mary had one in Fatal Fury, due in large part to being "inspired" visually by Android 18. Her head's proportions have shifted to more reasonable levels since.
  • Iori Minase in The iDOLM@STER, to the point that Miki Hoshii often calls her "Deko-chan" (from odeko, which means "forehead").
  • Crispin Whytehead in Psychonauts. Not only does his forehead take up four-fifths of his face, he has a hugely protruding brow hanging down over his eyes.
  • Victor from Darkstalkers during his headbutt special move, where his forehead grows to about 3x in size.
  • Senator Armstrong of Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance has a prominent forehead. According to his character designer, his forehead and chin were emphasized from his original design to emphasize his strength.
  • Pearl in Splatoon 2. Literally half of the girl's face is forehead!
  • This is common for female models in The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind, especially female Nords. Heddvild in Balmora is an especially prominent example. Apparently, bangs are out of style during this era in Tamriellic history. (Notable, male models do not suffer nearly as badly from this.)
  • Haru Okumura from Persona 5 has one. Aside from her floofy hair, it's probably the greatest source of Haru memes.


    Western Animation 
  • Everyone in Code Lyoko. Some people even discuss who has the biggest forehead, with Yumi being the winner generally.
    • Downplayed with William, who has a noticeably smaller forehead than most of the characters.
  • A guest appearance in Clone High.
    JFK: I can't see! Due to the glare... of Mena Suvari's enormous FOREHEAD!
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender: Not too surprising since it takes a leaf out of Anime, there are heaps of characters with huge foreheads and it's mostly female characters who have them such as: Katara, Yue, Suki, Azula and Ty Lee.
    • In the sequel series it's downplayed but Asami, Lin and especially Kuvira are the standouts. Jinora originally subverted this but when she gets her arrow Power Tattoo she displays it proudly on her forehead.
    • Males characters who have overlarge foreheads include Aang when his hair grows out (he even has to wear a hairband to cover his arrow), Sokka, Iroh, Ozai, and of course The Boulder.
  • Jimmy Neutron's peanut shaped head has a bountiful forehead (to hold in all that mad science, you see) with it's shape exacerbated by his large upthrusting hair cut.
  • Betty Boop whose design was the basis of the beginnings of the modern anime style.
  • Stewie Griffin from Family Guy has a large forehead to emphasize both that he is a baby and that he is sort of a mad genius plotting to take over the world. Plenty of doom involved.
  • Beavis and Butt-Head had a yin-yang take on this. One (Butt-head) had a face where the eye and nose were raised up so he had a very large head with the face splayed out over it while the other (Beavis) had his face scrunched up low down with a pronounced underbite for emphasis so that he had a lot of forehead space.
  • Noah from Total Drama, although it's more unrealistic head proportions than anything else (his hair covers most of it). Trent too has a very large forehead due to his tall and rectangular head shape.
  • The Brain. It occasionally causes him problems, like trying to slip through a chain-link fence Pinky goes through easily.
  • Dib. G.I.R. hides easily behind his noggin while infiltrating an enemy base.
  • In Superjail!, try not noticing the size of Jared's forehead.
  • Chrissy Damon from Scooby-Doo! Stage Fright.

    Real Life 

Alternative Title(s): Fivehead


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