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Humans Are Ugly

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"How repulsive! It has a smooth forehead!"

Mephisto: [points to Su-In] See. That spirit medium. Her legs are long and ugly.
Su-In: M-me!? To think I'd be called ugly by a devil! I can't believe this...

Ever notice how, when aliens look at humans, they can't help but be repulsed? Even though the only visible difference between humans and the aliens is usually a bunch of forehead ridges? Who knew that the lack of forehead ridges plunged humans straight into the Uncanny Valley? Maybe they think that humans resemble scalped corpses of their own kind.

Then again, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so what is considered attractive to us might not be attractive to others. Those same forehead ridges would often make the aliens seem like freakish mutants to humans. On the other side of the coin, truly inhuman aliens with huge pus-filled boils and spikes growing out of their skin have completely different ideals of beauty. So it's no surprise when the above alien is disgusted by humans, those disgusting creatures that have cuts on their head that contain calcified spikes surrounding a wriggling tendril that emits strange guttural sounds note  and a greasy mat of dead cells growing out of their head note  as they move about on fleshy stilts. note  Even after this, there is the idea that true ugliness is found's personality.

Bonus points if the human they consider hideous is strikingly attractive by most human standards. Common variations on this trope include "humans smell terrible" and "watching humans eat is revolting".

Contrast Mars Needs Women, where humans (especially the women) are the hottest thing in the universe.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In a filler episode of Dragon Ball Z, Vegeta and Nappa (who are Saiyans) land on a planet inhabited by bug people. They are arrested and thrown into a dungeon. Some of the prisoners remark on how hideous the two are to them. One of the more sympathetic prisoners calls his companions out and says that from the Saiyans point of view they (the natives) must be the ugly ones.
  • Subverted and invoked in the English dub of Digimon Adventure where Tentomon tells Izzy that his Mother is "very pretty for a human".
  • In Spirited Away, the spirits seem to have this opinion of humans, or at least of Chihiro Sen. Likely because, despite many taking humanoid forms, they're not actually human spirits, but creatures like weasels, ducks etc.. Furthermore, most the spirits react to Sens odor, being able to tell she's there by her scent and not finding it pleasant.
  • In Princess Mononoke, the Wolf Goddess Moro describes humans as hideous for lacking fur, fangs, and tails. She says her adopted human daughter San looks just like the other humans, but she is her daughter, so she is beautiful to her.
  • A Running Gag in Urusei Yatsura is that Starfish Aliens consider humans and Human Aliens ugly and are quite vocal to say so... In the presence of the gorgeous Lum.
  • Peter Grill and the Philosopher's Time: Orcs find humans repulsive and believe their pig-like features are beautiful. Because of this, they bully Piglette Pancetta, an Orc girl who looks like a beautiful human woman.

    Comic Books 
  • In the Mars Attacks! Image Comics, Martians find humans very ugly, this is shown how the scientist sees the captured superheroine.
  • In Miracleman, Miraclewoman gets this from the most advanced being in the universe, a brain the size of a continent. "In spite of your ugliness, you are wise."
  • Green Lantern: Rot Lop Fan, who himself looks a bit like a cave salamander, was kind enough to sympathize to fellow Green Lantern Katma Tui on how hideous she felt to him, despite her lovely voice. While Katma isn't human exactly, she does look human (albeit with pink skin).
  • Monica's Gang: A story of Brazilian comic Bubbly (Astronauta) has the title character being called to investigate a fraud on an alien beauty pageant. Bubbly teams up with a Starfish Alien who thinks that Bubbly himself is hideous. They arrive at the planet, where another ugly alien dislikes Bubbly's appearance. Then comes the pageant, and every contestant is only pretty for the aliens (the winner gets Bubbly into bouts of nausea, before they discover she was the fraud).
  • Bast, the Egyptian Goddess of Cats doesn't exactly say Morpheus is ugly, but in The Sandman (1989) issue "Season of Mists", she says she finds him much more attractive in cat form. Bast is an anthropomorphic cat.
  • Wonder Woman (2006): The Khunds, an extremely violent alien race, built statues of Wonder Woman to honor their defeat at her hands. Despite Wonder Woman being described as the World's Most Beautiful Woman, she's apparently considered hideous in the Khund's world so "adjustments" were made to the statue to reflect Khundish aesthetics.
  • Superman once got into a Let's You and Him Fight situation with Pax Galactica, a team of intergalactic warriors. Eventually, their leader Lourdes agrees with Superman's suggestion to stop fighting and team up against the true enemy. One of her teammates complains, saying Superman is too ugly to stand being near.
  • In The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (1992), Zora comments upon meeting Link that he's an "ugly little man" and his face is grotesque. Zora later gives Link a monster mask that will let him infiltrate one of Ganon's strongholds.
  • Disney Ducks Comic Universe: The aliens in Don Rosa's story "Attack of the Hideous Space Varmints" assume the ducks are mindless beasts because they're so ugly- white creatures with two eyes and orange growths on their faces.
  • Played with in ElfQuest: Elves consider humans to be plain at best, but it is a Justified Trope—the ancestors of the elves genetically engineered themselves to resemble the divine beings they saw portrayed in human art, who naturally exemplified human standards of beauty to an extent that actual humans cannot compete with. On the other hand, the trolls consider both elves and humans to be far too spindly and fine-featured to be attractive, and prefer their own heavy builds and bulbous features.
  • Wonder Woman (Infinite Frontier): In Issue #776, Ratatoskr eats an enchanted tart which transforms him into a human boy but still retaining his horn. Ratatoskr is distressed by this to the point of tears, viewing his new look as "hideous".

    Comic Strips 
  • A Mandrake the Magician story has a party of egg-shaped, one-eyed aliens deciding not to invade the Earth because they can't stand the sight of the humans. What really seals the deal is getting to study Mandrake's fiance Narda, whom they find so repulsive that they get sick. This is Hilarious in Hindsight if you happen to know that there is also a Mandrake the Magician story where Narda won an intergalactic beauty contest.
  • Marigold the unicorn from Phoebe and Her Unicorn invokes this from time to time.
    "What is a tiny bit of extra pink in a sea of fleshy human disgustingness?"
  • In Zits, a fly declares Jeremy ugly just as he declares the fly ugly.

    Fan Works 
  • In the Parody Fic Captain Proton and the Planet of Lesbians, Constance Goodheart (whose Running Gag is that she's a Screaming Woman) is beaten to the punch by The Hideous Gobblsnutch, a multi-eyed, multi-limbed, two-headed monster who's the Last of His Kind. Proton later convinces him to do a Heel–Face Turn by promising to take the Gobblsnutch to another planet where there are many horrible... handsome creatures like himself.
    Proton: Just think. Bug-eyed monsters, giant crawling eyes, multi-headed slime serpents, man-eating spiders fifty feet high...
    Gobblsnutch (Left Head): Ohhhh, they sound gorgeous. Will you set up a date?
    Proton: I'll even chaperone.
  • Daily Equestria Life with Monster Girl: Centorea Shianus, a centaur, gets sent to Equestria. The ponies consider Centorea's horse body beautiful, but her human body hideous.
  • The Vasto of White: Barragan remarks that he finds his human form ugly and prefers his skeleton form.
  • Raphael in The Chronicles of Karai Getting Her Shit Together makes it explicitly clear that unlike his brothers, Raphael has zero attraction to humans, citing their "rubbery skin" as one of the things that weirds him out about them.
  • In one Star Trek Fanfic,Eye of the Beholder, Spock finds Kirk's face and figure disgusting, but is still in love with him because, as a telepath, mental compatibility is more important to him than physical attributes. He reads up on appropriate compliments to offer, though, as Kirk evidently finds the Vulcan's Tall, Dark, and Handsome appearance simply delicious.
    It would probably never occur to Jim that Vulcans possessed different standards of beauty than humans, or if it did, he would probably think it limited to the shape of one's ears. Jim need never realize that his pale hair, light eyes, and pink skin were considered unattractive among Vulcans, nor that his bulky muscles and small nose were undeniably ugly by Vulcan standards.
  • In some The Hobbit fics like A Pretty Face and the heart of the stone, dwarves are portrayed as having different beauty standards from men and other races which results in Thorin and Kili, the two most human-looking dwarves in the cast, being considered unattractive by their kin due to their too-small noses, too-short beards, and too-slender builds, much to the hobbit Bilbo and the elf Tauriel's shared bemusement.
  • Played with in Bakugan fanfic, Friendship's True Form. Fabia Sheen tells Dan the Nethians have different standards and don't find Humans or Gundalians as a whole to be more or less attractive than other Nethians. She goes on to explain that Gundalians do find Nethians hideous. The Gundalians' feelings on Humans are never stated. Dan tell her that he thinks Gundalians look a little weird, but aren't ugly. And that he thinks Nethians are the same as Humans in terms of attractiveness.

    Films — Animation 
  • What the bugs from Thumbelina think of the title character after she's accidentally stripped of her bug disguise.
  • In Green Lantern: First Flight, when Hal Jordan is taken to Oa, he has to endure a litany of reasons given by the Guardians of the Universe as to why human beings aren't ready for Green Lantern Rings, which run the gamut of Humans Are the Real Monsters, Humans Are Morons, so on and so forth, and the punchline is this:
    Guardian: And then there's the smell...

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Battlefield Earth, this is what Psychlos think of humans.
  • In the original Planet of the Apes (1968), Dr. Zira has to get over her human revulsion when Taylor asks for a goodbye kiss. She also remarks how ugly he looks after shaving off his beard.
  • Star Trek: Generations: The first thing the Duras sisters see through LaForge's VISOR is Dr. Crusher. Their response? "Human females are so repulsive!"
  • Maleficent: This seems to be the opinion of Maleficent and Diaval about humans. For example, when Diaval is transformed into a human for the first time by Maleficent (in order to be saved from death by a farmer) he dislikes his human form, since it seems that for him, the humans are ugly. Since he’s a bird, he’s bound to have a different standard of beauty. With Maleficent, she apparently does not have much experience with human babies. For example, when she meets baby Aurora and Maleficent dislikes her quite a bit and she tries to scare baby Aurora but she fails.
  • Halloweentown III: Halloweentown High has Dylan fall for a cute girl who's just as dorky as he is, only to be freaked out to discover that she's actually a furry pink troll. They argue, during which she admits to finding him ugly, but was willing to overlook it. They eventually reconcile and are about to have their big romantic kiss...but then she admits that no, he's just too ugly for her. Dylan is relieved and the two decide that they're Better as Friends.
  • From the film Enemy Mine:
    Davidge: (after Jerry saves Davidge from sand monster) You saved my life. Why?
    Jerry: Maybe I need to look at another face... even one as ugly as yours.
    Davidge: So you still think humans are ugly?
    Jerry: Compared to a Drac? VERY ugly. But that thing out there... is even more ugly than you.
    Davidge: (sarcastic) Thank you.
    Jerry: (grinning) You... are... welcome.
    • Sadly inverted later when Jerry's offspring Zammis begins to cry because he doesn't look "normal" like his uncle Davidge.
  • In They Live!, when Nada is first confronted by one of the alien agents, the agent assures him "You're as ugly to us as we are to you."
  • Zuezav of Zircolon a.k.a. Ariel Cola in Stepsister from Planet Weird finds humans grotesque, especially her own Human 'vehicle'.

  • Discussed in Ender's Game, when Ender muses that the aliens (nicknamed "Buggers" by humans, presumably because they resemble giant bugs) probably refer to humans as "Slimies" owing to their soft oily exteriors rather than hard exoskeletons.
  • In Robert Silverberg's "Ishmael in Love", the dolphin narrator, despite being in love with a human woman, often describes the human body as being ugly and ungainly.
  • In Alan Dean Foster's Nor Crystal Tears, the Thranx are deeply unnerved and revolted by humanity's endoskeletal bodies and bizarre upright posture. Of course, humans return the favor, as Thranx are essentially four-foot-tall praying mantises. Fortunately, both sides largely get over those gut reactions with a lot of work. Played with a bit also, as many thranx find humans' flexibility remarkably graceful, even if they're ugly otherwise. Likewise, even the most insect-phobic of humans have to admit that thranx smell lovely.
  • Stanisław Lem has a couple of examples:
    • In The Cyberiad (a short story collection) robots see humans (whom they call "palefaces") as the most disgusting creatures in the universe.
    • One of Ijon Tichy's voyages in The Star Diaries has him dealing with a United Nations-like federation of aliens. He finds their appearances bewildering (initially thinking his sponsor for Earth's admission into the group is a vending machine)—and the aliens find humans revolting on a molecular level (levorotary amino acids?! Disgusting!).
  • In The Amber Spyglass, Mary Malone stays with a village of mulefa, wheeled antelope/elephant-like creatures. They're intelligent and kindly and adopt her readily — but they admit, even after months of getting to know her, that they find her shape ugly and hideous because she's utterly unlike anything they've ever seen.
  • In Stephen King's short story I Am the Doorway (appears in the collection Night Shift), aliens infect an astronaut, and eyes appear on his fingers. Those eyes see everything in the world — but especially humans — as monstrous and abominable.
  • Grendelkin, a race of monsters from The Dresden Files, are only able to reproduce by raping humans. They have to get seriously drunk before they get busy, however. While this is later Justified by non-hilarious means, Harry still can't help but Lampshade it.
  • In the novel Transformers: The Veiled Threat, the Decepticons wax at length about how ugly they find humans. Even an Autobot comments to a swimming human ally that he likes her better when she wears her goggles, as they give her head a more robotic look. Of course, they are giant, mechanoid, robotic aliens, so their perspective on what is attractive is very different to say the least.
  • In Le jour des fourmis (i.e. Empire of the Ants), Arthur Ramirez uses a small TV screen in order to show the human world to the ant 103th. Afther seeing some models, the soldier ant said in her head that she find the human females very ugly!
  • In the World War novels, the aliens refer to the humans as big uglies, which is somewhat ruder than us calling them lizards.
  • Variant: While the Auditors of Discworld have no concept of beauty or ugliness, they find the human form repugnant due to its possession of (Ewwww!) orifices, with all the messiness and inefficiency such features entail.
  • In Planet of the Apes the novel, the human protagonist Ulysse and female ape scientist Zira feel mutual intellectual attraction. Once they Almost Kiss... but Zira can't bring herself to it, as Ulysse is too ugly in her eyes.
  • In Charles Pellegrino and George Zebrowski's The Killing Star, the alien who captures Hollis and Wayville is struck by how ugly they seem to him.
  • In Fate of the Jedi, Luke Skywalker tells his son Ben that it's okay to think that the Kel Dor are ugly, because it's all a matter of perspective.
    Luke: Tell you what, if you think it's wrong for you to think of them as ugly, just think of how you look to them. Short, squat, unlined skin, a nose that puffs up like a rodent, tiny little mouth with jagged white things in it, a horrible shrub-like growth on your head.
    Ben: This, from the man who's worn a bowl-cut hairstyle almost all his adult life.
  • In one of the Star Trek: The Lost Era novels, a Romulan reflects on how humans look horribly unfinished to Romulan eyes; as if their ears and brows were only half-formed. Another book in the series suggests that to those humanoid races with ridged foreheads or brows, humans actually look infantile, reflecting a "typical" humanoid baby (the young having less pronounced ridges). Among the human-like races, humans are thus bland and disturbingly undistinguished.
    • Another Trek novel, The Final Reflection, features a hybrid (possibly part-human) girl at a Klingon orphanage who's teased for being ugly because of her smooth forehead and slender build.
  • The conquering aliens in the Pandoras Planet series of short stories (later anthologized under that title) seek to play up this trope after capturing Earth, to limit pro-human empathy by members of the alien race.
  • In the novelizations of the Alien vs. Predator world, when the point of view is from a Predator, if they are looking at a "ooman," they refer to him/her as "ugly," "pale," or "sickly."
  • Terry Bisson's short story "They're Made Out of Meat" has an extraterrestrial race of energy beings that find Earth's attempts to communicate with other planets, but choose not to contact us because our meatiness squicks them out.
  • In Animorphs, resident alien Aximili eventually figures out that humans use clothing to cover those parts of their body which they find ugly or socially offensive. He's convinced they cover all the wrong parts, though, as no human ever seems to think to wear something over their hideous nose! In the eight book, "The Alien", he narrates that he doesn't see why everyone considers Rachel beautiful. Then he morphs into a human and narrates that now he understands.
  • In Chess With A Dragon, humans are one of only a dozen mammalian races in a galaxy dominated by thousands of reptilian and invertebrate civilizations. The only races that don't think we're unspeakably disgusting are the ones that think mammals like us belong on a plate.
  • The Stainless Steel Rat Saves the Universe has humanity involved in a genocidal war with slimy tentacled aliens, simply because they find us so repulsive. The protagonist discovers that the Grey Men (villains from a previous novel) are using brainwashing to engineer the war, and so he uses the same technology to make the aliens see the positive aspects of humanity. Like our slimy sweat and flickering red tongues.
  • Invoked in ''Who Goes There?", the classic 1938 short story by John W. Campbell.
    Blair: You are displaying the childish human weakness of hating the different. On its own world it would probably class you as a fish-belly, white monstrosity with an insufficient number of eyes and a fungoid body pale and bloated with gas. Just because its nature is different, you haven't any right to say it's necessarily evil.
  • In the Courts of the Crimson Kings. A Martian biologist examines a captive human, and despite his similar bipedal form is squicked by such things as body hair and sweat.
  • In C. S. Lewis's Out of the Silent Planet, Ransom is watching some tall, lithe, majestic Sorns walk toward him, and notices some very odd, short, chunky creatures walking alongside them with a gait that looked like piledrivers. He then realizes that the odd creatures were humans like himself, and that he'd spent so much time on Malacandra that he was now looking at humans with alien eyes.
  • In the Myth Adventures short story "Myth Congeniality", the drop-dead-gorgeous Bunny is rated lowest in a cross-dimensional beauty contest, competing against females from hundreds of nonhuman and non-humanoid species. But she wins the prize anyway, being the only contestant who wasn't disqualified for cheating.
  • In The Mirrorworld Series most Goyl are repulsed by the softness of human flesh, even Will, who gradually becomes disgusted by Clara. Kami'en is a rare subversion, the first Goyl to take a human wife. Other inter-breeding is mentioned in passing, though, suggesting that he's not the only one with an attraction to humans.
  • Frequently lampshaded in the Lensman series, with its many Starfish Aliens. This doesn't prevent the formation of alliances and even close friendships, where the attitude is "he's so hideous that he's positively distinguished-looking."
  • The Lost Fleet series often muses on this trope with regards to the Dancers, an alien race who look terrifyingly hideous but are the only alien race thus encountered who didn't attack on sight. If they find us as frightening as we do them, they're polite enough to keep it to themselves.
  • In the first book of the Slayers series Zolf orders his minion Dilgear to rape the sorceress Lina Inverse. Fortunately for Lina, Dilgear is half-troll and half-werewolf, and finds human Lina repulsive.
    Dilgear: Well... if she were a glamorous goblin or a petite cyclops I would... but why of ALL things would I sleep with a human?
  • In The Iron Teeth web serial, the goblin Blacknail frequently remarks or thinks about how ugly, pink, and fatty he finds humans.
  • In William Tenn's humorous short, "The Flat-Eyed Monster", a human is accidentally teleported light-years away by some bug-eyed creatures which not only find him absolutely hideous, but terrifyingly so. Those flat eyes, and only two of them. That dry, dry skin, without a trace of slime. The absence of tentacles. And it can't even pmbff! What a monster!
  • Goosebumps novel "My Best Friend is Invisible" by R. L. Stine features this trope. As it turns out The protagonists and his family are not humans and the story takes place on their planet, where despite being considered extremely ugly, humans are an endangered species. It somewhat justifies their decision to sell the protagonist's best friend to a zoo. (At least, they think so.)
  • In the original novel Tarzan of the Apes, a young Tarzan is disgusted the first time he sees his hideous reflection in a pool of water and wishes he were as handsome as the other young apes (having grown up among them, he sees the apes' appearance as normal and his difference from them as freaky).
  • One comedic Xenofiction short story by Brazilian author Luis Fernando Verissimo has aliens sending a small probe to Earth and checking on what its cameras and sensors detect. Once it sees a bikini-wearing nubile teen coming out of sea, the aliens are disgusted, given:
  • To Pufftail in Stray (1987), humans can't hold a candle to a cat's beauty. Humans are coarse, ugly, and oddly proportioned things.
  • In Fairest, a gnome tells Aza that to gnomes, all humans are ugly, and that in fact, Aza, who is considered unattractive by human standards, is actually less ugly by gnome standards than most humans. It's revealed later in the story that Aza has gnome ancestry.
  • In I, Cthulhu, Cthulhu admits humans "[s]cared the shit out of [him]" when he first saw them.
  • In The Outside, the alien Sispirinithas, who resembles a Giant Spider, taunts an Outside monster by saying, "You are even uglier than a human."
  • The Moon and the Sun: Sherzad, a mermaid with a face that resembles a gargoyle's, thinks humans are ugly because of their smooth faces, which remind her of eels.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Star Trek:
    • Star Trek: The Next Generation:
      • In "Home Soil", the ship is taken over by intelligent microscopic crystals that call humans (and every other sentient being on the Enterprise) "UGLY BAGS OF MOSTLY WATER".
      • Averted with most other species. The Ferengi pretend to find humans below their standards, but are such deviants that they can't help themselves.
        Lwaxana: They're as bad as humans. Look at that leer on his face.
        Daimon Tog: Actually, his is a look of revulsion. But it is not a feeling that I share. (stares at them pervertedly)
      • The first lines we hear from a Ferengi (whose ugly face is filling the viewscreen) is that the hideousness of humans has clearly not been exaggerated!
    • In the same vein, the Founders of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine take this view among their more general Fantastic Racism against "solids".
    • Even in Star Trek: Voyager, when a Cardassian double-agent fell in love with her human mark, she still expressed relief that their love-child took after his momma. "Thank goodness he doesn't look too human; you all have such weak foreheads."
  • Star Trek: Enterprise:
    • Although humans aren't aesthetically unpleasing to Vulcans, they do smell terrible.
    • In the episodes explaining how so many Klingons in Kirk's time had no cranial ridges and looked like humans with slightly more facial hair, the doctor whose experiments with genetic augmentation using DNA from human augments caused it laments near the end that "Millions of Klingons will have to live with this hideous disfigurement!"
  • The Suite Life of Zack & Cody has an alien say "Boy, humans are ugly!"
  • The follow-up series, The Suite Life on Deck had a cockroach alien remark on how humans are an "ugly, disgusting race". Marcus responds by pointing out the alien's hairy feelers and slime pouch.
  • This is the Karmic Twist Ending of a The Twilight Zone (1959) episode titled "Eye of the Beholder", and to say anything else would be a spoiler.
  • In Angel, the demon residents of Pylea consider humans repulsive. The Groosalugg is respected for his warrior prowess but shunned for his human-like looks (he's Mr. Fanservice by our standards, Lorne describes him as the lovechild of Fabio and Keanu Reeves).
    The Groosalugg: (confused that Cordelia finds him attractive) Don't you see this strange bulge in my arms? (points to his biceps) This strange curve in my mouth? (points to his mouth) My heart... beating in the wrong place? (puts Cordelia's hand over his heart on his bare chest)
    • In the previous episode, demons Trensiduf and Vakama are arguing over how much Cordelia is worth. Vakma points out that Cordelia is too skinny, "and ugly too." Cordelia (who's Bound and Gagged) immediately emits a squeal of protest, whereupon Vakma offers one pig for her.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • Former vengeance demon Anya tries to get information from another demon, who starts complaining that she walked out on him after a one-night stand. Anya promises to sleep with him again, but the demon isn't interested.
      Torg: Ugh, please, you're human. The way you look now, I wouldn't touch you for all the kittens in Korea.
      Anya: You're rejecting my offer of sexual bribery? What am I, a leper in this town? I can't even give it away!
      Torg: Come back when you're a leper.
    • In "Life Serial", Spike takes a rather drunk Buffy out to a demon bar. The demons are appropriately grossed out by his taste in women, particularly Clem, a demon who's covered in loose, floppy skin.
      Demon 1: Better go, Spike. Things could get ugly.
      Demon 2: It got ugly the moment he walked in; him and his human.
      Clem: Her skin's so tight, I don't even know how you can look at it! Eew!
  • Doctor Who:
    • In "The Time Warrior", Irongron bursts in on the Sontaran warrior Linx and catches him with his helmet off.
      Linx: Didn't I tell you you might not find my face pleasing?
      Irongron: Aye. And never was truer word spoken. Are they all so fair of face beyond the stars?
      Linx: The variety of sentient life forms is infinite. Do you think your primitive features are pleasing to me?
    • The gag continues in the revival episode "Deep Breath", when the Sontaran Strax says to the human Clara Oswald that she looks terrible, even if she is a good-looking girl.
    • In "Carnival of Monsters", Vorg (an alien carny) points out that he and his companion, Shirna, both look like "Tellurians" (humans) to a trio of Inter Minorian bureaucrats. One of the trio snarks back that "the resemblance is unpleasant..."
  • Mako Mermaids: An H₂O Adventure: It's mentioned more than once that mermaids find legs to be disconcerting. Sirena in particular finds them disgusting, and when asked by another mermaid why humans wear shoes, she matter-of-factly replies that it's so feet stay out of sight.
  • Marilyn from The Munsters is the only one in the family that looks like an actual human. However, she and her family believe her to be the most hideous member of the family. This is enforced by the belief that Marilyn's appearance keeps scaring away boyfriends, everyone completely unaware that it's actually the sight of the rest of the family (especially Herman) that scares off potential suitors.

    Puppet Shows 
  • Fraggle Rock: Uncle Matt has told Gobo that Silly Creatures (humans) are some of the ugliest things in the universe, though not as ugly as Gorgs. When he sees some trick-or-treaters—one of whom is wearing a Kermit the Frog costume—he thinks this is why they have disguised themselves.

  • Journey into Space: In Journey to the Moon / Operation Luna, the Time Traveller tells the crew that his people were originally shocked by their appearance and that it took that quite some time to get used to it.

    Tabletop Games 

    Video Games 
  • Mortal Kombat:
    • In Mortal Kombat 9, after blasting Kabal with fire, Kintaro quips that humans are "much less ugly when they burn".
    • Played for Drama in Mortal Kombat 1. Syzoth (aka Reptile) has the ability to take a full human form, but this has marked him as a freak among his people and he is exiled from them because of it.
  • In the prehistoric era of Chrono Trigger, the reptites (humanoid lizard beings) always call the humans "those hairless apes".
  • In EarthBound Beginnings, Giegue (more well-known as Giygas) on more than one occasion refers to humans as "ugly Earth People" during the Final Boss battle.
  • HK-47, the Ensemble Dark Horse (and sociopathic droid) of Knights of the Old Republic calls humans "meatbags" and wonders how they can stand to walk around as sloshing bags of organs. He can even cause the player character to feel a moment of self-doubt.
  • Mass Effect 2 has Garrus (a turian — humanoid equivalent of the link between birds and dinosaurs) as a romance option for a female Shepard. The relationship is based on inter-species If It's You, It's Okay — "I'm not going to pretend I've got a fetish for humans, but this isn't about that. This is about us." Although as the Romance Sidequest continues in the third game it's obvious he's becoming increasingly physically attracted to female Shepard, and by extent humans. Especially obvious in the Citadel DLC, which averts this trope by having Garrus constantly remark on how sexy he thinks his girlfriend is.
    • The series tends to avert this however. Although humans are not quite at Mars Needs Women status, human women are regarded as reasonably attractive by most aliens, largely due to their resemblance to the asari.
  • Star Control:
    • The VUX from Star Control II are an entire race that think humans are so ugly and repulsive that they can't help but want them exterminated. Ironically, when the game starts, humanity thinks they're on bad terms with the VUX because, on first contact, the human captain involved insulted their looks, not knowing how advanced VUX Translator Microbes are. The VUX use this insult as the main reason for hating humans in order to cover up their bigotry, but you can pry the real reason out of them by asking repeatedly. Except for Admiral ZEX, of course...he finds them rather attractive...Hence his exile to an uninhabited world (except for his *ahem* menagerie).
    • Talking to a Spathi ship (other than Fwiffo's) before allying with them will reveal that the Spathi consider humans to be ugly, though they don't make as big a deal about it.
    • In Star Control Origins, the Menkmack frequently call humans ugly, though their tone of voice suggests they are using it as an Insult of Endearment, at least after allying with humanity. With the Menkmack, who are lying liars who lie, it can be difficult to tell.
  • In Warcraft III, in the first orc mission, when encountering the quillboars in Kalimdor for the first time, one of the orcs commented on the curiosity of the new beings with, "At least they're prettier than the humans".
  • In similar fashion to HK-47 Shale, the golem companion in Dragon Age: Origins, refers to all creatures of flesh, especially humans, as "squishy", "weak" and "disgusting" (the last mostly in terms of bodily functions). The only companion Shale respects almost from the very start is Sten, who isn't human, but a member of a race of large, strong and very durable humanoids.
    • Oghren, the drunken dwarf party member, also seems to find non-dwarven women (especially elven women, as he mentions to Velanna in Awakening) too thin and bony. At one point he may even call the Player Character ugly, while everyone else in the game praises their beauty. Doesn't stop him from shamelessly propositioning every woman he comes across though.
  • In The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Link is considered attractive-looking and largely non-threatening by pretty much any character who brings up his looks regardless of race. But when the Rito girl Kheel is trying unsuccessfully to get her sisters to come to singing practice, she speculates that they'll be more likely to listen to a "big scary Hylian" like him.

  • Cursed Princess Club: Princess Thermidora is a lobster who was cursed by a sea cucumber love rival to turn into a human, with only her lobster claws staying the same. Her new body looks like a voluptuous redhaired woman, but she thinks it hideous, finding her unchanged pinchers the only part of her that still looks good. Whenever she praises her human friends' appearances, it's usually for features that most humans would find unattractive but which would be attractive for lobsters (e.g. when she praises Gwendolyn's beady black irises).
  • In The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob!, one of Princess Voluptua's subordinates criticizes her for disguising herself as a human. "'Tis undignified for the heir apparent to dress like a monkey!"
  • In Tales of the Questor, Quentyn reacts to his new sidekick's, Sam, demands to respect her modesty when she is forced to bathe by him by noting that he finds nothing attractive in beings like Humans and Elves who look like naked rodents to him. However, when Sam emerges, Quentyn notes that her now clean bright blonde hair looks nice, and that if she had proper body fur someone could come after her for her pelt.
  • While not finding humans repulsive, the trolls in Homestuck are baffled by humankind's pale skin and lack of horns. At least one troll describes humans as looking "boring".
  • In Earthsong, one of the characters is a spider-like being. Others are a little unnerved by his appearance, but he reveals he finds them just as unnerving. Specifically, his race is telepathic, and uses their mouth only to eat, which they consider a private thing. Therefore, he is repulsed whenever he sees normal people talking with their mouths. Seen here.
  • In Yokoka's Quest, Copycat thinks Mao looks better with the cat ears from his curse, than he would as a human.

    Web Videos 
  • Dragon Ball Z Abridged: Porunga assumes Krillin is an Albino Namekian when he sees him for the first time. Dende corrects him and points out that Krillin is actually human to which Porunga responds, "God, they're ugly!".

    Western Animation 
  • In the Darkwing Duck episode "Twitching Channels", he and Megavolt are transported into our world and shriek in terror at the "hideous, beakless mutants."
  • DuckTales (2017): In "Quack Pack!", the Duck family ends up in a reality where their lives are a family-friendly sitcom from The '90s. They freak out when they see it comes with a live studio audience of humans, or "horrible flesh-faced monsters" as Huey calls them.
  • The animated Earthworm Jim series revealed that Princess Whats-Her-Name was actually the sister of the Big Bad, the hideous Queen Pulsating, Bloated, Festering, Sweaty, Pus-Filled, Malformed Slug-For-A-Butt. However, the Princess was born horribly deformed, with a slender body, pink skin, long red hair, and large eyes. Yeah, that's right: Everything that makes her an over-the-top cartoon hottie to humans makes her hideous to Insecticans. The Narrator even lampshades this.
    Yes, well....obviously Insectican standards of beauty are quite different from our own.
  • On the Gargoyles episode "The Mirror", Goliath mentions that he never realized Elisa was beautiful until she was turned into a gargoyle. She replies "You mean you thought I was ugly?" Goliath quickly changes the subject.
  • He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983):
    • This is Granamyr the Dragon King's opinion of humans. In one episode, a fellow dragon named Torm and a human girl named Lyra fall in love. Torm describes his sweetheart as "the loveliest and sweetest being I have ever known". Granamyr is baffled.
    • In another episode, He-Man allies himself with some bug-people who find humans "hideous". (One of them is rather offended when Beastman and Mer-Man call him a monster, as they look pretty monstrous themselves.)
  • In the SpongeBob SquarePants episode "Band Geeks", Squidward's band ends up playing at a human football game. They find the audience disturbing, which isn't helped by a number of the people in it being some combination of flabby, shirtless, and covered in body paint. Even with the theory that Bikini Bottom was home to sea life mutated by radioactive tests, their first look at humans (other than Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy) from a distance would make them appear as fish with something wrong with them.
    Patrick: These are some ugly looking fish.
    SpongeBob: Maybe we're near one of those toxic waste dumps.
    Mr. Krabs: I think I'm gonna be sick...
    • When Spongebob and Patrick meet David Hasselhoff in the first movie, however, they harbor no problem with seeing a human being in-person.
  • In Ben 10: Omniverse:
    • Rook reassures Kevin that he won't hit on Gwen by claiming that "Gwen is only attractive by human standards". To Gwen's chagrin, Ben confirms Rook's opinion saying there's "no comparison" between Gwen and the females of Rook's species. Gwen's patience runs out when Kevin then quips "so to him Gwen would be like an orangutan wearing glasses?" and she launches Kevin and Ben out of the ship.
    • Ben and Rook go to the infamous Anur System, where all of Ben's monster-inspired aliens (Blitzwolfer, Frankenstrike, Snare-Oh) come from as well as the former domain of the evil Ghostfreak. Upon arriving, we learn that Ben is considered hideous and a monster. Despite Rook's attempts, Ben finds it hard to understand why he would be viewed as monstrous.
  • A Halloween episode of The Simpsons ends with Homer transported to the real world. At first he's terrified, mumbling things like "Oh my God look at the... (people)", but is quickly distracted by Erotic Cakes.
    • Another episode has him worry that the relationship between his father and Marge's mother will retroactively lead to their kids becoming inbred "freaks with pink skin, no overbites and five fingers."
  • In an episode of Dungeons & Dragons (1983), Eric is turned into a bog beast, an ugly, toad-like creature with a low, guttural voice. Eventually the heroes meet some actual bog beasts (actually pretty nice guys) and Eric is able to turn himself human again. However, the bog beasts feel sorry for him, seeing as he's now so ugly! (To them.)
  • In Voltron: Legendary Defender, Alteans like Allura and Coran are most visibly distinguished from humans by their Pointy Ears. Allura's first reaction upon seeing a human (Lance) is that his ears are hideous.
  • The Amazing World of Gumball: In "The Slide", Gumball and Darwin (a cat and a fish respectively) are trying to get a girlfriend for Rocky (a puppet) in a dating app. When a live-action human girl appears, they are scared due to her having a hair "made of lots of little hairs", five fingers, and many other human traits that they find ugly. Then a female rock with a bow appears, and they find it much better. Although ironically, at an earlier point in the episode, Gumball edited Rocky's creepy profile picture into a handsome human male.
  • Yellow Diamond of Steven Universe displays this in "The Trial" as a reaction towards Steven, believing him to be a form of Rose Quartz. Given the Diamonds history with Rose, Yellow likely said it as an excuse to speed up the trial and head straight to the execution. That said, once she finds out Steven is Pink Diamond('s son), her attitude to his appearance is much less malicious.
    Yellow Diamond: Is that Rose Quartz? Look at this hideous form she's taken. Forget the trial. We should shatter her just for looking like that!
  • Not a human, but Princess Mandie from The Fairly Oddparents is beautiful by Earth standards but ugly by Yugopotamian standards.
  • When Anne the human is transported to Amphibia, a land where amphibians are the dominant species, the locals waste no time telling her that she's a hideous, horrifying monster. At one point she gets a major outbreak of zits, which endear her to the locals, thinking that they're 'ruby-red warts'. And once her break-out's over, their opinion returns to before.
  • In one "Terrible Thunderlizards" segment of Eek! The Cat, the Thunderlizards react with repulsion at the sight of Babs, a beautiful cavewoman genetically created to lure Bill and Scooter. Lampshaded when General Galapagos explains that Babs looks hideous to dinosaurs, but attractive to human males.
  • An arc in Ben 10: Omniverse sees Ben have to do business on Anur Transyl, a planet populated by alien species inspired by classic horror movie monsters — all of whom end up seeing Ben as an ugly monster and attack him in response.

    Real Life 
  • Koko, a gorilla that was taught to use sign language to communicate with people, once remarked that she thinks humans are ugly. No explanation on why, but given the circumstances it's pretty incredible anyway.
  • Most cockroach species find humans, and their smell in particular, disgusting. Multiple experiments have shown that a healthy cockroach specimen would immediately hide and groom excessively after being touched/grabbed by a human.


Video Example(s):


Zuezav of Zircolon a.k.a Ariel

Disguised as a human on earth Zuezav of Zircolon (a.k.a Ariel Cola) finds herself hideous... an opinion not shared by the other students at school.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (2 votes)

Example of:

Main / HotInHumanForm

Media sources: