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Good Smells Good

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At times, when a character enters a good or holy area, they'll find that it smells spectacularly pleasant. It usually smells of pleasant perfumes, incense, flowers, and maybe delicious food, and grows more powerful as a visitor comes in contact. Another variant is a good or virtuous being carrying a pleasant aroma with it when it appears. Frequently one of the Goodness Tropes.

This trope stems from the fact that good and sanctified things smell wonderfully pleasant, so if somewhere or something smells good, it's probably benevolent. After all, as the saying goes: "Cleanliness is next to Godliness".

However there are inversions of the trope where a character that smells good might be an excessive extreme of good aka Knight Templar or even The Vamp willingly trying to invoke the trope to fool others. Could play into the notion that a good character is one that Smells Sexy which naturally appeals to others, even if the end result is not true. If unsettling in context, the trope can veer into Creepy Cleanliness.

Contrast this with Evil Smells Bad as a direct opposite of the trope and with Uncleanliness Is Next to Ungodliness, where the stench is just a character's poor hygiene.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Samurai Champloo: Fuu is searching for a samurai who "smells of sunflowers" who turns out to be Seizo Kasumi, her father and a Japanese Christian who worked to protect fellow Christians from persecution and abandoned Fuu and her mother to keep her safe from the Shogunate's plan to assassinate him and his associates for heresy.

    Comic Book 
  • Justice League of America: The Justice League of Europe's Crimson Fox is actually a Twin Switch pair of identical superheroines who use heavenly-scented pheromones to seduce men to their whims. Luckily, they are both cases of Heroic Seductress and crusading Nice Girl who use their powers to protect others and save lives. Even their day job include alternating as an Honest Corporate Executive of an ethically-run perfume company acting as an honest competitor to the Corrupt Corporate Executive who killed their parents.
  • In the Lady Death story arc,The Rapture, Lady Death deals with two representatives, one from Hell and the from Heaven, who seek to sway Lady Death to their respective factions in the coming Apocalypse. The representative of Heaven is Aquiessence, an Angelic Beauty whose body gives off an alluring and pacifying scent.
  • In the Sin City arc of The Hard Goodbye, Marv's monologue referring to Goldie states "She smells like angels ought to smell, the perfect woman... the Goddess", notable as Goldie is one of the only characters who treats Marv kindly as a Hooker with a Heart of Gold. This smell is later on brought up again when he meets Goldie's twin sister, who also proves to be benevolent if much more ruthless than her sister.
  • In Wonder Woman, Wonder Woman is described by Lois Lane in a tell-all interview as not wearing perfume or makeup, yet still permanently smelling of an impossible fusion of sweet white grapes, olive oil, and sculpted bronze, which gives her a perpetually enchanting allure on top of her other amazing qualities.

    Films — Animated 
  • Lotso of Toy Story 3 is a strong inversion in that he's known to smell of strawberries and puts on a kindly mentor front, but he's actually a cruel and ruthless tyrant keeping toys as prisoners to be abused indefinitely by children and his cronies.

  • In Angels & Demons, a Papal Guard's security team is about to enter the catacombs beneath St. Peter's Basilica. The entrance to the catacombs - where the Popes of old are buried essentially making it the Holy Ground of the Vatican - is flanked by votive candles and incense burners which are loaded with Butane, making it smell nice while lethal to any trespasser. As one of the guards wryly puts it "Smells Like Heaven, Burns Like Hell."
  • In The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel, whenever the protagonists use their innate magical gifts their auras flare up and each gives off a pleasant scent, the sister's silver aura having the smell of vanilla and the brother's gold aura smelling of oranges.
  • In Warrior Cats, it's almost always noted that Spottedleaf smells "sweet". She's also a character who is defined by her kindness.
  • An explosion of pure good according to The Wish List is noted to leave its demonic victims smelling like fresh-baked cookies, among other things. The other demons find this disgusting.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The Chosen: Inverted when the demon possessing Caleb is disgusted by the disciples' presence, claiming that those who have come into contact with Jesus (or even just someone who themselves interacted with Jesus) smell 'putrid' from holiness. Presumably a non-demonic entity that could smell holiness wouldn't find it so revolting.

    Myths & Religions 
  • The Myroblyte saints are Catholic and Orthodox saints whose bodies are said to exude pleasant aromatic oils in response to their sainthood.

    Tabletop Games 
  • In Changeling: The Lost, an incidental effect of joining the Knights of the Knowledge of the Tongue order is that the scent of food always follows the changeling. What kind of food depends on the observer's opinion of the changeling: someone who likes them will smell food they love, and an enemy will smell things like sprouts or raw meat.

    Video Games 
  • A notably strong inversion with Olga of Asura's Wrath. She's one of the Eight Guardian Generals now Seven Deities ruling as the Deity of Lust responsible for keeping the Gohma at bay to protect humanity. Her minions are enamored by her as a bewitching scent trails behind her wherever she goes. However, she's actually a crazed General Ripper killing humans for thousands of years to garner power for herself and plans to keep mankind as slaves to maintain her status and a steady supply of souls to destroy her enemies.
  • In Paper Mario 64, Princess Peach gets an umbrella that allows her to disguise herself as Bowser's minions. Despite the disguise looking perfect, Kammy Koopa figures out Peach's disguise because she "smells too nice".

    Web Comics 
  • The Strongest Florist: Due to all his time spent studying plants and flowers, Jaeho now has a pleasant floral smell around him. The Elve's keen sense of smell detects this and it helps him slowly win their support, as he is so far the only human who doesn't, well, stink.