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You'd freak out too if you saw a creepy-crawlie come out of the shell you just heard the beautiful sound of the ocean in...
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A character undergoing emotional stress may be shown from a head-on view or directly from the side with their head bowed and their eyes covered by their bangs or forelocks. (Sometimes the shot starts from one angle and cuts midway to the other.) Even if they have no bangs at all, it's their brow ridge that covers them. Their eyes are not drawn, even when they should be at least partially visible through the shadow, giving the impression of a blank face above the bridge of the nose. This usually symbolizes a person driven by events to a point of unpredictable action; when you see this on any cuties, you know they've been thoroughly broken.

This could also be used to show how remorseless and intimidating a monster is, particularly when it is attacking some poor, innocent creatures.

If not temporary and the character's eyes are hidden all of the time, it's Eyes Out of Sight. Eye-Obscuring Hat is for when hats obscure the eyes. One-Way Visor is for it's due to helmets or visors; eye-obscuring hoods go under In the Hood; and when it's caused by glasses, it's Opaque Nerd Glasses. Only emotional moments qualify for Hidden Eyes.

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See also The Faceless, Face Framed in Shadow, and Kubrick Stare. Sometimes, the eyes are hidden behind a pair of Scary Shiny Glasses. It's possible to hide them just enough to appear to have Black Eyes of Evil or a Ghostly Gape. When the eyes are hidden because of exposed or hidden character, see Blank Face of Shame. For characters that literally and permanently lack eyes, see Eyeless Face. See also Peek-a-Bangs and Comical Angry Face.


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Examples:

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    Anime and Manga 
  • The 100 Girlfriends Who Really, Really, Really, Really, Really Love You: One of the girlfriends is literally named "Hidden Eyes" in Japanese, i.e. Meme Kakure.
  • Akame ga Kill! — Pretty much every member of Night Raid does this at least once every other episode, usually right after they head back to their HQ after someone else has inevitably died.
  • In Attack on Titan Ymir appears with her eyes constantly hidden in the Paths. A flashback to her life has every individuals eyes hidden in shadows as well. When Eren sympathizes with Ymir and tells her she can choose what to do, her eyes are revealed as she breaks down crying.
  • When exposed to extreme cuteness, Sakaki in Azumanga Daioh exhibits this. She also turns into this, for different reasons, when she happens to think of Chiyo-Dad.
  • Ururu Tsumugiya from Bleach (pictured above) does this when she enters Hollow-killing mode, much to the horror of some of the people she hunts.
    • Ichigo does this in Chapter 397.
  • Genzo Wakabayashi from Captain Tsubasa, given that he wears a cap which makes this trope occur frequently.
  • Pretty much every episode of Case Closed, wherein Kogoro/Richard is rendered unconscious so that Conan can imitate his voice to solve the crime without revealing his secret identity. Apparently, no one minds that Kogoro/Richard stares at his feet and doesn't move during his flashes of insight...
    • ...instead, they decide it's his signature crime-solving pose and dub him "Sleeping Kogoro."
  • Chrono Crusade has this crop up occasionally, in particular with Aion in Chrono's nightmares and flashbacks.
    • In the manga, Chrono himself has this happen for a few panels in the Marionette Train arc.
  • Among many characters in Code Geass. Most notably with Rolo, Suzaku, Shirley, and Lelouch.
    • One example of this occurs when Lelouch attends the funeral of his friend Shirley's father — whose death he inadvertently caused.
  • Kinshirou Kusatsu gets the briefest moment of this in the Cute High Earth Defense Club LOVE! manga, just after finding out that his Good Former Friend Atsushi Kinugawa belongs to the opposing Five-Man Band of Magical Boys. He gets over it in about a heartbeat.
  • Happens to Light Yagami from Death Note whenever he's feeling particularly evil. Coupled with his Evil Laugh Perhaps it's to hide those Glowing Eyes of Doom.
    • Not just evil by any means — most of his genuine emotional responses get hidden behind his hair. After all, when Light actually reveals his emotions, it's the stuff that the titles of pivotal chapters are made of.
  • Chiyuki in Death Parade was designed with long, blunt bags specifically for this trope. This happens to her when she passes out, when she regains memories, and also in the final episode when she almost decides to sacrifice someone else’s life for her own.
  • Himeko from Destiny of the Shrine Maiden has one of these after a dress, given to her by Chikane for a date with Souma, is destroyed when they were attacked by Tsubasa. It wasn't really her fault, but being Himeko she still thinks it is.
  • In an episode of Digimon Tamers, Juri falls suspect to this during an emotional Mind Rape period. The funny part is that the English dub ended up drawing eyes for her, not only ruining the effect of the scene but also causing the animation to clash horribly.
  • Digimon V-Tamer 01 uses this effect a few times, usually as a sign someone is falling into a trap laid by Taichi or Neo and they're trying not to give it away.
  • The .hack series uses this trope in a slightly different way: almost all scenes in the "real world" (as opposed to the cyber-world that is the setting for most of the series) featured characters without eyes. As these scenes were frequently done in monochrome, as well, it was potentially used to make reality seem much more soulless, and much less visceral, than the fake world the characters indulged in. Deep-Immersion Gaming is used to show that the character avatars look exactly like their real-life players' faces anyway. The only time real-world people's eyes are shown are when two of the main characters finally meet each other in real life at the end of the series.
  • Nyuu of Elfen Lied exhibits Hidden Eyes when she switches to her Lucy persona.
    • And Lucy has different eye shapes even. It's a mark of the berserk state, as Nana does this the few times she loses control.
  • Natsu in Fairy Tail. After seeing Igneel get killed by Acnologia, his eyes are hidden when he cries.
  • Extremely common in the Fist of the North Star anime, especially with Kenshiro, Rei, and Raoh; when it happens, you can be sure that their opponent's minutes are numbered.
  • Ditto with Fruits Basket.
  • Full Metal Panic! has Sousuke and Kaname display Hidden Eyes at times.
  • Future Diary: Considering the amount of insanity and Break the Cutie moments among the main cast this happens a lot. Yukiteru and Yuno are huge victims of this in particular.
  • From The Garden of Sinners, Souren Araya's eyes are never unhidden, aiding how sinister he's supposed to be.
  • Kuroudo Akabane from Get Backers tends to keep one or both of his psychotic eyes hidden in his bangs or hat.
  • Rakka from Haibane Renmei, on at least two occasions.
  • In the anime of Haruhi Suzumiya, if arranged chronologically, Haruhi is seen stalking out of the clubroom in the fourth episode. If you look carefully, you can see that she's eyeless. The viewers/the ones that read the novels would guess that something bad involving Haruhi is gonna happen. They're right. Two episodes later, Haruhi almost destroys and recreates the universe.
  • A somewhat less serious instance of this happens in Harukanaru Toki no Naka de -- Hachiyou Shou Episode 5, when Tenma tells Akane how much he cares for her, wants to protect her, doesn't want her to cry... and Akane replies that she won't cry anymore and will do her best... together with everybody — completely failing to realize that Tenma likes her. Cut to the speechless Tenma with Hidden Eyes.
  • Both in manga and anime, Hayate the Combat Butler mastered this. It happens many many times in each chapter/episode. All characters do this, especially Hayate. Though usually there are some vertical lines instead of shadow on their faces.
    • A notable example is Hayate's big brother, whose eyes remain hidden up until little Athena finally reveals the dream she's been refusing to let herself believe — meeting Hayate again.
  • The Hellsing OVA uses a variant on the trope for dramatic embellishment. Seras arrives to the aid of Sir Integra (and revealing to Father Anderson that she is now a true vampire). Anderson warns Iscariot not to engage her since she's now vastly more powerful. He then comments on her change, noting how her eyes look like windows into the abyss. At this time, only one of her glowing red eyes is visible behind her bangs but covered in shadow. He then notes how human she still appears. She lifts her head out of the shadow, and her bangs shift to cover her other eye and emphasize Anderson's words about her dual nature.
  • Happened a few times in Higurashi: When They Cry, along with just about every other way to convey insanity.
    • It even happened with Rena when Keiichi brought her back and even when she lifted her head, her eyes were closed for a little longer before revealing her eyes were clear again when they had been dull since the end of the episode before.
    • Also happens pretty often in its Spiritual Successor, Umineko: When They Cry (at least, the anime adaptation).
  • The one time viewers get to see the wrath of Miyazawa Yukino of His and Her Circumstances, she gets truly frightening. The fit begins with an application of this trope, progresses to a wild chase after the transgressor, Shibahime Tsubasa, and climaxes with Yukino's transformation into a youkai-faced avenger. Never again does a student dare provoke her fury.
  • Gankutsuou: Albert does this a lot in the latter half of the series.
  • The iDOLM@STER it happens several times, from the most different reasons. Chihaya gets one when she jealous of the other girls bust sizes. Iori, Mami, Ami, Yayoi, and the Producer get like this when they found out that the 765Pro hadn't managed to place a single idol in the next auditions, etc.
  • Kan'u Unchou from Ikki Tousen (especially Ikki Tousen: Dragon Destiny) displays this (though in a manner similar to Chad's).
  • Mikael from I'm Gonna Be an Angel! has his eyes obscured for a brief moment during the revelation in the rain in Episode 23 when he decides to become a demon.
  • Inuyasha could have an entire subpage of this:
    • Sesshomaru goes through one of these when Rin dies a second time, and he can't just revive her again with his sword.
    • During The Final Act, Midoriko's eyes are never actually shown.
  • Hazumu of Kashimashi: Girl Meets Girl has these for almost all of Episode 1. We don't see them until he gets whacked by a spaceship and becomes a girl.
    • Anytime the show flashes back to her previous gender, his eyes are always hidden.
  • Normally cheerful and spastic Sana Kurata from Kodocha will sometimes hide her eyes in her bangs when she's thinking about depressing things, usually involving her foil and best friend Akito.
  • Kotoura-san: Kumiko momentarily possesses these as she crosses over the Despair Event Horizon.
  • Hino of La Corda d'Oro gets these during her Break the Cutie process.
  • Ueki does it while fuming down a corridor in Episode 5 of The Law of Ueki.
  • Happens quite often to Minami in Lucky Star.
    • Played for Laughs with Tsukasa in Episode 6 after she saw a bug crawl out of the shell she'd just listened to the sound of the ocean in.
  • Madlax gets these when she falls victim to Enfant's Mind Rape "Elda Taluta" attack.
  • Used on the Wolkenritters in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's during their final battle against Nanoha and Fate, after the identity of their master had been discovered by the two and they're forced to kill them to prevent the TSAB from finding out.
    • Also Nanoha in StrikerS when releasing Raising Heart, just before her Barehanded Blade Block on Subaru and Teana. This coupled with some Off-Model animation in the TV version, caused some viewers to doubt whether she was emotionally sound at the time.
  • Ascot from Magic Knight Rayearth. He unhides them briefly in the second season when he admits that he loves Umi.
  • Used to disturbing effect in MÄR when inside Snow's mind during her Despair Event Horizon. She's also not entirely shaded in this scene which provides a startling contrast to how bright and cheery she usually is. She shows her eyes again when Ginta delivers a Cooldown Hug.
  • Heero and Zechs have both done this in Mobile Suit Gundam Wing. Usually, this means some poor mook(s)' about to die...
  • Monster Rancher:
    • Given how much others emphasize how Genki has 'clear, honest eyes', and how Genki himself claims that he refuses to let anything get him down, whenever he develops a case of this, it's a sign of him struggling emotionally.
    • In a Flashback sequence revealing what happened to Holly's father after he left their village, his eyes are barely overshadowed by his hat the whole time, despite its design not really being the sort that would easily cast shadows. This underscores the Unreliable Narrator's claims that he was driven by Revenge.
    • When Lilim shows the rest of the Searchers what appears to be Tiger's lost disc, Genki's eyes are hidden by his bangs while he mourns. Hare also gets these for a moment before attacking in a tearful rage.
    • After Granity is freed from Metalner's Mind Control, most of the Searchers have black shadows across their faces as they surround the villain responsible.
  • Moriarty the Patriot: William's eyes are hidden from view in The Valley of Fellows, just after he's been saved from his own suicide attempt (partially because one is now quite damaged and useless), until after he confesses that he can finally see the beauty in the world after Sherlock has gotten through to him and his emotional state has been properly shared.
  • Shizuru from My-HiME hides her eyes beneath her hair when confronted by Haruka and Yukino after they believe she may have raped Natsuki in her sleep. Mere seconds later, she turns against them and attacks Yukino, destroying her CHILD in one stroke.
  • In My Hero Academia, All Might is consistently drawn in such a way that his eyes are obscured by shadows. Unlike in most cases of this trope, however, it is not to show him in distress or to make him more menacing (unless you're a villain he's set on defeating), as All Might is one of the most virtuous heroes in the setting. Downplayed in his true form, where his eyes are still shadowed, but his blue irises are visible. Averted in My Hero Academia: Two Heroes, when All Might is restored to his physical prime and his striking blue eyes are unobscured.
  • When she's feeling particularly angsty, Nadia from Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water is shown with her head bowed and her eyes hidden from view.
  • Used on just about everyone in Naruto at least once.
  • Konoka from Negima! Magister Negi Magi displayed this in sadness after Asuna's death in the first Anime's Gecko Ending.
  • Jittery and depressed Anti-Hero Shinji Ikari from Neon Genesis Evangelion demonstrates this trope quite frequently, along with Blue with Shock.
    • Also subtly in play with Asuka's reaction to her and Shinji's Awkward Kiss, while she makes a big show afterwards of storming to the bathroom under the excuse of wanting to rise out the taste, her eyes are notably hidden. And, indeed, when the scene is played Once More, with Clarity! in a later episode, it is made clear that Asuka misinterpreted Shinji's awkward reaction to the kiss as a rejection, and her trip to the bathroom was an attempt to hide how deeply hurt she was by this perceived turndown.
    • During and after her Mind Rape Asuka gets into this trope as well.
    • Appears in Rebuild 2.0 as well. Asuka gets jealous when she asks Rei about her opinion on Shinji, and from her response, Asuka deduces that Rei also loves him. Cue Asuka invoking this trope before storming off.
  • Kirika, from Noir. More and more as she slowly rediscovers her past.
  • In Nyaruko: Crawling with Love!, Mahiro has to play The Beard for someone, all while Nyarko watches and has typical Clingy Jealous Girl reactions (like mentally wishing for a notebook that kills people). When they go to a restaurant, Nyarko pulls Mahiro aside and begs him to end the charade; rather thoughtlessly, he tells her "If it bugs you that much, just go home." At that point, Nyarko develops Hidden Eyes and doesn't say another word for the rest of the day, making it painfully obvious that we're not supposed to be laughing anymore.
  • One Piece does this a hell of a lot. Even when they're in a good mood.
    • The most emotional example was in Luffy vs Usopp. Luffy of course won, but at the cost of a good friend, and walked away with his straw hat on, trying to keep the waterworks from running.
    • Called back later when Luffy and Usopp made up. When Luffy reached out, his hat covered his eyes, seemingly stoic and calm... until he lifted his head and revealed he was weeping tears of joy the entire time.
    • Another emotional example comes from Sanji in a Hope Spot during Whole Cake Island arc outside his fiancée Pudding’s window learns Pudding never loved him, thinks he’s pathetic and is planning to kill him at the Tea Party. His eyes shadowed in sorrow, thankfully events greatly improve for him afterwards.
    • Gold Roger is always shown like this. His eyes weren't seen until over 500 chapters into the manga.
    • Kaido’s eyes for most of his introduction and even for quite a time afterwards were always shadowed.
    • Big Mom gets these when all the oshiruko she craved to eat turns out to be all gone.
    • Zunesha, the island-carrying elephant, is so damnably old its eyes have receded into their sockets out of sight, making it look like it has none; very rarely do its eyes get shown in shots from the front; ironically enough, despite this Zunesha's eyesight is excellent still.
  • In Oto X Maho, Kanata's eyes vanish when you hit one of his Berserk Buttons. It generally leads to a laughably one-sided beatdown.
  • Peacemaker Kurogane: As the main characters Wangst for a good portion of the series, Hidden Eyes are common, as are their eyes widening in shock and their pupils narrowing into tiny pinpricks.
  • Pokémon does this from time to time, particularly when someone has to give up a Pokemon for one reason or another. Though it's almost exclusively Ash.
    • Sabrina's young half spends most of its time with her eyes hidden. Along with a creepy-looking smile.
    • Just about every main character in Pokémon Adventures has had their Hidden Eyes moment or two.
  • Ryoma Echizen from The Prince of Tennis, when his opponent belittles him or his team or physically hurts him in a match.
  • Hayate from Prétear has these in the first episode when told that the Knights will have to find the Pretear (which he objects to), and later in the series when he is about to reveal the Backstory to Himeno.
    • Sasame also gets this as he questions his motives right before his Heel–Face Turn.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Happens to Sayaka when she goes Laughing Mad in Episode 7. She also spends the majority of the scene where she becomes a witch with these.
  • Gokudera from Reborn! (2004) does this very frequently, especially in the daily life arc. As does Tsuna.
  • Whenever Rozen himself shows up in Rozen Maiden, his hair always seems to cover his eyes. Later stops once Enju is revealed to be Rozen, since we now know his identity. Or not, considering that Enju actually isn't Rozen, but just a jealous apprentice. Rozen himself eventually appears afterwards with his eyes still hidden by his hair.
  • When Fumio's classmates inexplicably charge the blood-drenched heroine who is wielding a chainsaw in Saitama Chainsaw Shoujo, their eyes are rarely visible.
  • Sanzo and Gojyo in Saiyuki.
    • Not just Sanzo and Gojyo. But pretty much the entire cast of the series whenever they are in a moment of badassery.
  • Sekai and Kotonoha repeatedly in School Days.
  • Yuu of Seraph of the End does this occasionally when faced with a reality he can't ignore or when confronted by an illusion of his beloved family member Mika.
  • Fuyuki from Sgt. Frog is normally a cheerful, polite, weak middle-schooler. When pushed too far, he shows a truly terrifying rage and a fair share of ability to get physical. Normally this is represented by a dark cloud surrounding him and Hidden Eyes — and then a Gilligan Cut to the (comedic) results (usually Keroro looking terrified and Fuyuki looking cheerful).
  • Used on occasion in Slayers, most notably in NEXT's opening.
  • Tail Chaser: In Chapter 1, the main Cat Girl has these during her Potty Emergency.
  • In Episode 12 of Tantei Team KZ Jiken Note, Aya does this when she relays the Wham Line regarding Uesugi's situation (that is, Uesugi's vision has deteriorated to the point that he can't read; treatment has only a 40% chance of success and failure may cause total blindness) to Kuroki and Kozuka. The latter two responds with Quivering Eyes.
  • Touch (1981): Happens to Tatsuya Uesugi repeatedly whenever someone brings his brother's death up.
  • The villain Legato Bluesummers from Trigun, constantly keeps a Hidden Eyes (or technically eye) expression, though occasionally both eyes are hidden.
  • There are various times in Yu-Gi-Oh! where eyes are obscured by hair or by shadow. For example, in the Orichalcos arc, Yami's eyes are first obscured after losing Yugi's soul to Rafael, as well as the darkness inside him. The second time reverses that, where he conquers his darkness and saves Yugi.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! GX's protagonist frequently uses a subversion — he briefly does this and appears to be metaphorically or literally hurt by a particularly strong attack, and often seems to be sobbing or trembling, but then is revealed to be laughing in joy from his passion for the game, and enjoying the close match.
  • Yuri!!! on Ice does not show Victor's eyes on a number of occasions, including:
    • His facial expression when he wins the GPF in episode one
    • When he's thinking back on his lonely life before Yuuri in episode ten.
  • YuYu Hakusho:
    • Yusuke manages to pull this off several times in the series, despite having his hair slicked back in such a manner as to make it impossible. Apparently, his eyebrows cast huge shadows.
    • Kurama has such a moment after he's forced to kill a kid, and again in the final episode when Keiko gives her "I"m done waiting for you" speech.

    Asian Animation 
  • Lamput: In "Sleepwalking", Fat Doc gets angry at Slim Doc for making noise while he's trying to watch a movie. Fat Doc's mad face is tinted red and does not have his eyes visible.

    Comic Books 
  • A common way The Phantom is depicted, whenever he's not wearing his mask or some kind of sunglasses. Expect some rather bizarre shadows whenever he lies in bed talking with his wife.
  • This is standard form for The Punisher, especially when drawn by Tim Bradstreet.
  • This happens to Raven quite a bit in Teen Titans.
  • X-Wing Rogue Squadron:
    • Wedge Antilles, when the man who killed his parents locks him up and starts taunting him, gets his eyes hidden in shadow for a moment.
    • General Carvin, who, in a B-plot in those comics, is part of the Imperial Tribune, which briefly ruled the Empire after ousting Sate Pestage, and served to command and obstruct Ysanne Isard until she dealt with them, was always shown with shadowed eyes...until Isard's plans culminated, the other two tribune members were killed, and he was brought before her, beaten and bloody.
    • Baron Soontir Fel was, after Vader's death, the best Imperial pilot. He's not evil, though, and the solid black eyes only show up in one panel, when his eyes are in shadow. But it's a panel where he looks very sinister.

    Fan Works 
  • In Remnant's Bizarre Adventure, when the group confronted Toshikazu Hazamada, everyone was furious that he had been planning to use Surface to paralyze Pyrrha so he could rape her. How did Ruby Rose express that anger?
    Ruby Rose had appeared in front of the disgusting little cretin, a deep frown on her face as her bangs obscured her eyes as she held Crescent Rose menacingly.
  • Tales of the Undiscovered Swords: Sasanoyuki comes back from kiwame wearing a pair of glasses that sometimes gleam to conceal his eyes and with that his newfound troubled state of mind.
    And so, the joyful welcome-home party went on, the confusing and sorrowful mess that was his feelings went unspoken and unheard, the new spark of plain cold hatred in his unnaturally blue pupils remained obscured behind shiny lenses.
    The sun beat down, giving Sasanoyuki's glasses a blinding gleam that obscured the troubled look in his eyes.

    Film — Animated 
  • Flint's dad in Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs has a furrowed unibrow that covers his eyes throughout the movie, save two or three instances it raises to reveal his eyes, usually signifying his surprise or befuddlement.
  • In Sausage Party, Camille has these when she eats the baby carrots.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • Batman's eye-makeup has this effect, especially in the 1989 movie and The Dark Knight Trilogy — his eyes seem to completely disappear behind the cowl. Edward Nygma kinda-sorta gets one in Batman Forever, when he says, "I'll make you understand." Granted, it's not quite carried across visually, but Jim Carrey more than makes up for it with just an ever-so-slight forward tilt of his head, a subtle change in his eyes, and that menacing, determined tone; his eyes might as well be hidden in shadow.
  • Generally what makes Michael Myers’s mask from the Halloween films so damn creepy is the black shadowed eyes which along with the expressionless white face make him look so soulless. Although when you can make out his actual eyes through the mask’s shadow it’s just as unnerving.

    Literature 
  • Edenborn: in-universe, Deuce uses this effect while he's confined by Vashti. He covers his face with his mop of hair to disguise his moving lips immediately before he goes ballistic.

    Live Action TV 
  • Arrow. In "The Candidate", Oliver Queen notices his sister Thea has become disturbing violent in taking down criminals after being brought back to life. As no-one else in Team Arrow is taking his concerns seriously, Oliver provokes Thea until she attacks him, with the hood of her superhero costume falling across her eyes to show she's literally Blinded by Rage.

    Music 

    Newspaper Comics 
  • Beetle Bailey's eyes are always hidden under his hat or helmet.
    • In one strip, Lt. Fuzz wondered about that, so Sarge shouted "BOO!" behind Beetle to scare him and make his hat fly off so that Fuzz could see his eyes. Unfortunately, Beetle was wearing sunglasses.
  • You never see Jason's eyes in FoxTrot. The only exception is an early strip where you see his eyes closed when he's asleep. You never see Peter's girlfriend Denise's eyes either, justified because she's blind.
  • Part of the premise of The Phantom is that no one can look into the Phantom's eyes and live. In his superhero identity he wears an Irisless Mask Of Mystery (for which he was the Trope Maker) and while traveling as Kit Walker he wears opaque shades.

    Video Games 
  • In The Coma: Cutting Class, this trope is the reason Youngho doesn't initially realize what Ms. Song has become. The shadow hides eyes that are pupilless and pitch-black.
  • As a stylistic choice, every human character in Darkest Dungeon has hidden eyes, framing them in shadow. The only ones who have visible eyes are the abominations that have too many, the Crimson Court vampires (who have giant mosquito eyes as a side effect) and the Gibbering Prophet (who plucked them out and is carrying them in his hand).
  • Hector the Big Bad from Dept. Heaven always keep his eyes hidden with a nice hat. Probably to hide his big cute eyes.
  • The Masked Hero class in Disgaea 3 and Disgaea 4 has these, the beak-shaped visor of his Prinny-themed costume providing the shadow.
  • Eroge games tends to do this in a different light — usually, the protagonist's face is never shown to keep them anonymous. This can serve to create a "blank slate" for the player to project themselves into.
  • Several illustrations and renders of Kain Highwind from Final Fantasy IV give him Hidden Eyes, due to his Dragoon helmet. There are a few exceptions, such as one of Yoshitaka Amano's illustrations of him, a couple of sprite illustrations, and as seen in Final Fantasy IV: The After Years, anytime he appears as the Hooded Man or in his Holy Dragoon armor.
  • The Fire Emblem series loves to do this to its rank-and-file goons, usually 'covering' the eyes with the unit's helmets.
  • In Ghost Trick, Kamila gets these at one point when she is possessed by Yomiel.
  • It depends on the artist, but a distinctive trait of Hugo is that the shading below his large brow ridge is dark enough that his eyes can only vaguely be seen. Sometimes, it's outright pitch-black. However, this trope is quickly averted whenever he's surprised.
  • In a rare Western case, some Hitman artwork has 47's eyes unrealistically shrouded in shadow.
  • Happens in Iji between sector completes, usually after something traumatic has happened to Iji: namely, after it's revealed the hostile aliens have actually conquered the Earth, and not the facility, as Iji's brother tells her, and if Iji's brother dies, driving her crazy.
  • Mitsumoto from Izuna: Legend of the Unemployed Ninja always hides his eyes underneath his ninja hood.
  • League of Legends has a strange and unnerving invoked example with Jhin, who already wears a creepy ivory mask to accompany his deadly "performances", but additionally wears a dark leather cover over the rest of his head and only leaves his left eye exposed. The visual effect is that he remains fearsome with only one of his eyes showing under his mask and in certain angles and lights — where it's invoked is that Jhin is deliberately blocking out vision of his right eye altogether. He gains no practical benefit from doing so, but he does so because he feels he has to for his work to be "perfect".
  • The Hunter from Left 4 Dead (if you look under its hood, it doesn't even have eyes)
  • Almost every character in Little Nightmares covers their eyes in some way. Six has her hood and bangs, The Runaway Kid's hair covers his eyes, and the Lady, Chefs, and Janitor all wear masks. The only characters who don't wear masks are the Guests and the Granny (who you don't actually see for the most part).
  • Lufia series: Gades, Amon, and Daos of the Evil Gods known as Sinistrals have their top portion of their faces covered at all times in the original trilogy(Pictured here in the second game). Sometimes glowing red light can be seen illuminating from the shadows. The exception is in the reboot Lufia: Curse of the Sinistrals, where the faces of the Sinistrals are visible.
  • Aya's mother from Mad Father is seen sporting these while in her ghostly form towards the end of the game. This does a good job at making her seem lifeless and creepy.
  • The cover for the Mega Man Battle Network and Mega Man Star Force crossover Operate Shooting Star shows Mega Man Geo-Omega (the one from star force, on the left) doing this with his visor solidified (it is normally see-through).
  • The Player Avatar in Pokémon Stadium does pretty much the same thing as above — hide behind a cap. (With a bit of a creepy smile, too. Why so mysterious, little kid?)
  • In Puyo Puyo Tetris, Ex's lose animation has his eyes becoming invisible as part of his disappointed expression.
  • Rival Schools' Roberto hides his eyes behind a blue visor. When he's not wearing it, he instead hides it under a hat or some other head covering.
  • River City Girls Zero: The cops in the opening have their eyes covered by shadows from their hats.
  • Silent Hill 2:
    • Used interestingly in the very beginning when the main character James Sunderland is introduced staring intensely into his own reflection; his actual face is perfectly well-lit and visible, but his reflection's eyes are obscured by shadow. Though he seems, at this point, relatively reasonable and sweet, this shot effectively foreshadows his truly unhinged mental state. What’s more unsettling is brightening the scene reveals James is looking straight at YOU!. Whether this was intentional or not is unknown.
    • Used to an even more creepy extreme later on when meeting Maria in the jail cell in the Labyrinth. While Maria is talking there’s an Animation Bump from the in-game graphics into CG as camera zooms on Maria as she’s talking. Her shadowed skull-like eyes combined with her smile is extremely creepy and even more so when James asks “Aren’t you Maria?” and she replies her eyes still shadowed “I’m not your Mary” in a menacing tone. While Maria had unsettling qualities before, this scene makes it more clear, there’s something horrible and inhuman about her.
  • Tales of the Abyss: Tear Grants, in a similar fashion like Chad/Kan'u.
  • Almost everybody in Theresia: Dear Emile has something hiding their eyes, ranging from bangs to a large-browed cap. A few visual angles reveal that they weren't animated with eyes at all — they have indentations where the sockets would be, but there's smooth flesh covering the area. This seems to be an artistic conceit rather than the literal truth.
  • Undertale's Asgore uses a variant of this: during his battle, his head is always faced down, with his eyes in shadow. This achieves the effect of making him look more fearsome, but also reveals an important facet of his character: he cannot bear to look you in the eye while he tries to kill you.
    • An unused set of sprites that can only be triggered through debug mode shows the protagonist's reflection on Waterfall's puddles with their eyes obscured and wearing a yellow and green stripped shirt. Notable because several things in Undertale that seem unused are actually Production Foreshadowing for...
    • The successor, Deltarune, uses this effect for two of the protagonists, Susie and Kris. Susie's eyes are usually hidden by her bangs, only appearing when she tries to look scarier, but as she warms up to being one of the heroes, her (now much kinder) eyes are shown more consistently. Kris's face above the mouth is always obscured by shadow, giving them the appearance of a stereotypical sullen teenager...until the ending, in which they literally rip out your ability to control them and turn directly to you with a single, glowing-red eye.
  • The Player's Character in the Yu-Gi-Oh! Tag Force series constantly wears a red baseball cap, which always shields his eyes. Even when the transition from 3 to 4 (and consequently, GX to 5Ds. The trademark red cap is still there, only with a different logo. The original cap (with the Duel Academy logo) is hanging on a coat rack in the character's house.)

    Visual Novels 

    Webcomics 

    Western Animation 
  • In Avatar: The Last Airbender, used on Toph in her debut episode when her overprotective parents refuse to let her go along with the gang. She then proceeds to take matters into her own hands and run away from home.
  • In Batman: The Animated Series, Annie, an amnesiac street urchin that Robin helps out, uses these when she realizes she's actually a part of Clayface.
  • Out of the five main operatives in Codename: Kids Next Door, 4 usually have their eyes covered through various means. Numbuh 1 wears sunglasses and Numbuh 2 goggles. Numbuh 4's eyes are covered by his hair, and Numbuh 5's by her hat. Numbuh 3, on the other hand, is an Eyes Always Shut.
  • The Blue Falcon from Dynomutt, Dog Wonder, due to his beak hood. Sometimes, it looks like he has empty eye sockets!
  • Professor Farnsworth in Futurama has eyes that are perpetually covered by thick green glasses. This becomes a running gag, with people referring to his eye color as "milky white", and him covering his entire face as he takes off his glasses to cry.
  • Gravity Falls gets a terrifying one from Giffany when Soos tells her he's breaking off their relationship for Melody, a human.
  • Eugly from Kaeloo, as her bangs cover her eyes. They are seen for a few brief seconds in Episode 82, but usually kept covered.
  • The Drill Sergeant from The Ren & Stimpy Show episode "In the Army" had a hat that covered his eyes.
  • Commonly used on Steven Universe. For example, during the flashback of Pink Diamond in "Jungle Moon", she displays them briefly after being scolded by Yellow Diamond. You can see them just before she punches a mirror.
  • Done a few times in Teen Titans, particularly among both Raven and Terra.


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