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Orange/Blue Contrast

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"All of Castlevania's level palettes incorporated orange in some way. And often incorporated shades of blue, which is orange's complement. A.k.a., it makes orange 'pop out'. It made everything really pop in general, and the game felt alive."

We'll start off with a little warning. After you have read this, the color combination will be everywhere you look. It will follow you around, haunting you. Thankfully, for most people this effect fades after a few days.

Basic complementary color theory states that when two contrasting colors are put together, they "pop," so the natural technique is to color films to have a strong, contrasting palette.

The one thing you will almost always have in a film is people. Human skin runs from pale pinkish yellow to dark brown, all of which are shades of orange. The color that contrasts best with orange is blue. So you turn up the shadows to the cyan end and the highlights to the orange.

Unlike other pairs of complementary colors, fiery orange and cool blue are strongly associated with opposing concepts — fire and ice, earth and sky, land and sea, day and night, invested humanism vs. elegant indifference, good old fashioned explosions vs. futuristic science stuff. It's a trope because it's used on purpose, and it does something. Especially in theater orange and blue are sometimes referred to as amber and teal in this context.

More here, here and here. Games have also picked up on this trend. A discussion of the coloring trends — especially in orange as they pertain to comics — is here.

Subtrope of Mood Lighting and sister trope to Unnaturally Blue Lighting, as well a very specific and common form of Color Contrast and Color Wash. Not to be confused with Blue and Orange Morality (even when it overlaps with Good Colors, Evil Colors, as in TRON: Legacy). Ties in with Hollywood Darkness, which is usually blue or teal, and often accompanies a Fire/Ice Duo.

Has a vague resemblance to the Loudness War; in both cases, something is pushed Up to Eleven in post-production, removing all subtlety from the sound or picture. Can be a factor in Digital Destruction.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Studio GoHands — Mardock Scramble, K — does this with a mix of blue/green/orange. Sometimes this appears more bleak than attention-getting, which works well in a post-apocalyptic setting.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann:
    • Kamina's design incorporates this. His iconic Cool Shades are orange or red depending on the light, his Badass Cape is red with an orange flame pattern, even his eyes and skin tone have hints of orange in them. This contrasts with his blue hair and tattoos.
    • The story begins deep underground, where the colors are almost entirely various shades of grey. As the protagonists break through to the surface at the end of the first episode, the evening skyscape is colored half-blue half-orange.
    • In Parallel Works 8, the first shots of the world are heavily orange, while it finishes as blue.
  • Dragon Ball:
    • The Turtle School gi, most famously worn by Goku, fits this color scheme. In the original Dragon Ball it was red and black rather than yellow-orange and blue, but over the course of Z it shifts to a middle-ground of sorts with red-orange and dark blue. Additionally, it contrasts with his first gi and his Dragon Ball GT gi, both of which are blue (heck, Goku's original gi fits under this as well, fluctuating between light blue and yellow-orange in the manga's full-color illustrations).
    • Heck, this trope even applies to the colours Goku and his rival Vegeta wear (orange and blue respectively).
    • The fight between Goku and Frieza in Resurrection "F" turns into this — Frieza's new Golden Super Mode has a fiery orange aura, while Goku's new form has a Heavenly Blue aura.
  • This is Naruto's original color scheme. After the Time Skip, he swaps the blue for black, which then becomes his default look.
  • Twins Amiboshi and Suboshi in Fushigi Yuugi. Calm and mature Amiboshi wears blue, while his hot-headed, emotional twin Suboshi wears orange.
  • The Digi-Destineds, Taichi "Tai" Kamiya (Taichi Yagami) and Yamato "Matt" Ishida" (Yamato Ishida) in Digimon Adventure, having their crests and crest empowered digivices colored orange and blue respectively.

  • The Czech photographer and traveller Jiří Kolbaba took an amazing series of photographs in Namibia, some of which illustrate this trope wonderfully. See one of his gorgeous pictures from a part of the Namib desert called Sossusvlei here.

    Comic Books 
  • The colorists at DC Comics in the early Eighties seem to have really loved the color orange, especially on the Superman titles.

    Fan Works 
  • The author of Old West has made a cover that features downwards from above an orange sunsetting sky over the town of Mud, a blue lake situated next to the town and a dark cave.

    Films — Animation 
  • Aladdin. Most scenes feature both blue and orange prominently. Even the main characters have Blue/Orange contrasts in their outfits.
  • The Adventures of Tintin has this prominently on the poster.
  • The Blu-Ray "restoration" of Fantasia uses this, most prominently in the "Night On Bald Mountain" sequence, where everything that was originally black is now blue.
  • This poster for Brave, with the orange being Merida's hair, and the blue being the Will-o'-the-Wisps and the fog.
  • Marlin and Dory from Finding Nemo.
  • Atlantis: The Lost Empire:
    • The blue of the ocean contrasts against the orange light from the submarine's windows.
    • Orange fire in torches contrasting against the overall blue of Atlantis.
    • During an underwater chase sequence, the torpedo explosions are rendered in orange to pop against the blue ocean.
  • My Little Pony: Equestria Girls – Forgotten Friendship: The duo of Sunset Shimmer and Trixie Lulamoon have sharply contrasting colors, with Sunset's red-and-yellow hair, amber skin, orange top and maroon skirt compared with Trixie's white hair, pale blue skin, dark blue clothes and purple skirt. This emphasizes their differences and complementary aspects when standing side-by-side.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The carbon chamber from The Empire Strikes Back is dimly lit with orange lighting and surrounded by blue-tinged darkness, providing an eerie contrast for the first showdown between Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader. It also predates the modern "Blue and Orange" phenomenon by about two decades.
  • Blade Runner:
    • The Final Cut features this in almost every scene. It's part of its distinctive visual style.
    • The original cuts with the proper color timing had their fair share of orange-and-blue.
  • TRON: Legacy: The movie itself consists mostly of this. It could have been grandfathered in as the original TRON was mostly black-and-white with Red and Blue glow-lines. For the sequel they kept the Blue glow intact, but then they went and tweaked the Red to be various, mostly Orange-ish shades.
  • Limitless: Limitless is an interesting example because of the way it's used; whenever somebody takes the NZT, the scene will shift from blue highlights to orange highlights, and vice versa when it wears off.
  • In Hollow Man, invisibility serum is blue and counterserum is orange. Also, in thermal vision living organisms are mostly orange/red and the environment is mostly blue.
  • Drive. In the opening sequence, the only colours (with the exception of the pink title) are the blue and orange coming from the lighting in Los Angeles at night.
  • The song and dance number in Om Shanti Om called Dard E Disco has lovely orange blue contrast with gold tones for about 3/4 of the song.
  • Scott Pilgrim vs. The World purposely uses this trope as a parody for Lucas Lee's movies. All of his movie posters are off-the-scale blue/orange contrast.
  • Skyfall: In Shanghai, the lighting keeps switching between orange and blue. One of the final action scenes also uses the palette.
  • The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. The scenes in the goblins' caves. The orange of the flames mixes with the blueness of the darkness.
    • "Desolation of Smaug" has the particularly egregious example of the leaves and sky in Mirkwood.
  • In Peter Pan, when Peter pauses in the bedroom window, his body is lit in orange from the room with a blue moonlit background.
  • Riddick: The first third of the film is made in shades of dark yellow, with occasional splashes of blue. Most of the last third is Hollywood Darkness blue.
  • Star Trek Into Darkness contains many examples, especially in scenes set aboard the Enterprise. We see orangey faces against blue backgrounds, and also sets which are lit (or painted) in patches of blue and patches of orange.
  • I, Frankenstein has it in almost every shot. You can get sick of teal and orange from this one movie alone!
  • Australia: The Scenery Porn. The Australian Outback is bright orange and sandy desert contrasted with deep, cloudless blue sky. Plus the orange tinting on the human characters and often-appearing dark blue lighting.
  • The Hunger Games: Catching Fire: Almost every color is some shade of orange or blue, except in the scenes taking place in the Capitol, where purple is added to the mix, and in the jungle, where plenty of green is visible when we see the tops of trees.
  • Found throughout the film The Double. It's more obvious in some scenes than others, such as the ones in the photocopy room, where the lighting is exclusively blue and orange.
  • Mad Max: Fury Road: The main colours in the trailer are orange desert, blue sky, and orange flame. Also, contrasting the daylight scenes' orange hue is the blue Hollywood Darkness in the night scene, more saturated than usual.
  • Out of Sight uses orange lighting for scenes in sunny Florida and goes with mostly blue hues when the action shifts to snowy Detroit.
  • Hot Tub Time Machine has a deep teal and orange tint.
  • The posters and DVD covers of G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra gives a very blatant contrast, having the Joes stand in blue background, while the Cobra stands in an orange/yellow background.
  • The main poster for Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens is lighted on one side by Kylo Ren's red lightsaber and orange explosions, and on the other side by Finn's blue lightsaber and blue laser fire.
  • Hunky Dory, set during a famous heat wave, is washed out in a beautiful gold, but a few evening scenes are a soft blue.
  • Divergent:
    • In Divergent, the orange is dominant during the fear simulations, with blue in the background. This is reversed at the test, where blue is dominant and orange is in the background.
    • In The Divergent Series: Insurgent, Jeanine's control room is made up of various shades of blue. The controls on the screen are orange.
    • The Divergent Series: Allegiant, does a similar thing where the screens of many of the machines are blue, and the text appears in orange.
  • The Milano, Star-Lord's spaceship in Guardians of the Galaxy is blue and orange.

  • The book cover website Good Show Sir started using the tag "once you see it" for blue and orange covers in spring 2013. Because once you see it, you see it everywhere.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The Doctor Who revival, especially the sixth series. It's also present in the seventh — "Nightmare in Silver" uses it to show the two sides of the Doctor's mindscape when the Cyber-Planner starts taking over.
  • Burn Notice: Watch out for Michael's orange skin, paired with a light blue shirt.
  • Instant Star used a blue filter for the school interior sequences, to better match the late 19th/early 20th century stone High School building they used for exteriors and disguise the interior sets built for the midcentury-modern Degrassi school building.
  • In some scenes and in a good deal of promotional art, the titular character of The Flash (2014) is awash in orange light or set against an orange background. Some villains, like Zoom and Savitar, are associated with blue light. For the former, it's a representation of his use of Velocity 9 to attain higher speeds. For the latter, it's a sign of his otherworldly connection to the Philosopher's Stone and the Speed Force.
  • Awake: the two different universes that the show alternates between each get their own color pallete: Red/orange for the reality where Britten's wife is alive, and green/blue for the one where his son is. It actually serves a purpose in making it obvious to a careful viewer which one the scene is taking place in.
  • CSI: Miami had a very saturated color palate while CSI: NY was originally darker and drearier. When the two crossed over guess which characters were bathed in golden light while the other was in dark blue shadows.
  • Fringe: The intro sequence started off blue, but would change to red-orange depending on which universe the episode took place in, sometimes switching back and forth to show frequent transitions during the episode. Much more subtle during the fifth season, but nonetheless present; often the now-fugitive Fringe team would have to double back to Walter's old Harvard lab, which is an orange hue due to being ambered, while the scenes that show them evading the Observers have a bluish tint.
  • Kamen Rider Gaim: Gaim's primary form, Orange Arms, consists of bright orange armor worn over a dark blue bodysuit. In his more powerful Kachidoki Arms form, the orange overtakes the blue in most areas.
  • Kamen Rider Ghost has the main riders with these as the color scheme: Ghost the Main Rider is the Orange, while Specter the Secondary Rider is the Blue, and the both of them have contrasting kinds of personality.
  • Kamen Rider Ex-Aid gives Emu a Literal Split Personality form, Mighty Brothers XX (Double X), that represents the two sides of his personality: the teal-colored left side is him as a compassionate doctor while the orange right side is him as a fun-loving professional gamer. The colors also serve as Foreshadowing: if you invert them you get red and blue — the colors of Kamen Rider Para-DX's two forms, hinting that Parado is Emu's personal Bugster. After this is revealed Parado takes over the orange half of the Mighty Brothers, since he was "Genius Gamer M" all along.
  • The final scene of "For a Few Paintballs More" from Community has this colouring all over the place, and it looks awesome. Annie, Abed and Troy have white clothes which have been stained with orange paint from the sprinkles, while Jeff, Britta and Pierce are dressed in blue of various shades.
  • Gotham: Virtually every scene is rendered in this palette to the point of absurdity. The cityscapes, however, are not.
  • Uchuu Sentai Kyuranger: The Orange and Sky Blue Rangers are paired together, both as a sub-unit of the larger team and because they have a big brother/little brother character dynamic.


    Music Videos 
  • The music video for "Remember the Name" by Fort Minor is between this and a green wash. While Mike Shinoda (yes, that Mike Shinoda) is rapping, it's more this, while Ryu (of Style of Beyond) gets the greenest parts.
  • The video for Zedd's "Clarity" is based on this concept; popping colors and contrast leads to clarity, get it?
  • The music video for Kvelertak's "Evig Vandrar" heavily uses this concept.
  • Peter Hollens' video of "Gollum's Song" from Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings movies, starts with images of Peter singing in front of an orange backdrop. A glowing line appears on the right side of the screen and slowly moves from right to left, as though burning away the orange backdrop, replacing it with images of Peter singing in front of a dark blue backdrop, his face heavily shadowed. This is meant to illustrate Smeagol's personality slowly being overtaken by Gollum's evil.
  • The video for "Dream All Day" by The Posies.

    Pro Wrestling 
  • Unlike most wrestlers in WWE, Sin Cara has special lighting during his matches. Said lighting is orange and blue. Sin Cara's ring attire and entrance video are also orange and blue.
  • WrestleMania XXVIII utilizes this for their poster.
  • The World Wrestling League's "Idol's of" Poster from April 21 2013. Though when Blue Demon Jr. and Mesias are on it, it's almost inevitable. Subverted when they were picked up by Mega TV and High Voltage became the main show. Scene transitions would switch between orange and blue.

  • The Amiga originally used black, white, blue, and orange. In its four-color mode — the one used by boot screens and the Workbench UI.
  • One of the display palettes for the Apple II, though not as commonly used as black, white, green and purple/magenta.
  • The Firefox logo, of an orange fire/fox encircling the blue planet Earth, and the default color scheme of the browser.
  • A short-lived TV service attempted by several phone companies in the mid-90s called Tele-TV utilized this in their logo and on-screen graphics.

  • In stage lighting, when a 'white' light is desired, it is common practice to use complementing colors from opposing angles, often amber and blue. This approach gives more 'depth' to actors on stage, resulting in cool blue shadows and warm amber highlights.
  • Theatre lights are colored by placing filters known as 'gels' in front of the lighting fixtures. The canonical gels for a basic warm/cool wash are R02 "Bastard Amber" and R60 "No Color Blue".
  • The poster for the musical of Rebecca is a giant R of bright orange fire on a deep blue background.

    • The mainly blue Gahlok, Gahlok Va and Gahlok-Kal have orange eyes, with the regular Gahlok even having orange Krana "brains".
    • Nokama in her Toa Metru and Toa Hordika forms also had orange eyes to contrast her blue body.
    • The blue Vahki Bordakh had striking orange as its secondary color.
    • The 2004 promo material likewise utilized this color-combo by lighting a portion of the background skyline orange to simulate the light and heat emanating from the industrial areas.
  • LEGO Ice Planet 2002, although white and black were important colors as well.
  • NERF Brand: The NERF Elite series has the blasters colored in blue, orange and white color scheme.

    Video Games 
  • In Star Wars: The Old Republic, the Darkside marker is orange instead of the more obvious red, whch contrasts vividly with the blue Lightside marker (though, given how this contrast is used elsewhere [blue = dark, orange = light], it seems very odd, to say the least).
  • Mass Effect
    • The morality of Commander Shepard is tracked on two separate karma meters, a blue one for "Paragon" actions and an orange one for "Renegade" actions.
    • The first game used a lot more clean blues and whites in game and the user interface was blue, while the second switched to gritter oranges and browns and the user interface turned orange. The third game switched back to blue much like the first, though the overall color palette was generally less vibrant and more subdued, giving it an almost grey undertone to match the hopeless, apocalyptic feeling the Reaper War evoked.
    • The Systems Alliance and Cerberus, the two main human factions Shepard works for in the series, use blue and orange as their respective color schemes. Not surprisingly, the menus and color schemes in each game match whatever faction Shepard is working for at the time (blue for 1 and 3 when working with the Alliance, orange for 2 when working with Cerberus).
  • The Battlefield series started using this trope with the cover art from the second Battlefield: Bad Company game, but Battlefield 3 really started it in earnest by putting it in the game itself:
    • Blue icons are used for the friendly team, orange for the opposing.
    • The menu interface.
    • Game/DLC posters. Orange for gunfire/explosions, blue for cooler atmospheric areas.
    • Maps like Operation Metro and Death Valley are washed in blue, while Bandar Desert and Tallah Market is washed in orange.
    • Explosions and muzzle flashes, are notably orange in color.
  • Brink: Orange for Resistance, Blue for Security, all other colors for scenery.
  • Crash Bandicoot is a walking orange-blue contrast; a creature with orange fur wearing nothing but blue pants.
  • Tomb Raider II: Some of the level with the Maria Doria are strongly orange/teal; surprisingly for a non-realistic PC game from 1997.
  • Blinx is orange, and wears a blue jacket.
  • Portal: Everything significant to gameplay that comes in two forms, with the exception of the black and white test chamber walls themselves, is blue and orange (or blue and yellow): the two ends of the portal; the propulsion and repulsion gels; the pushing and pulling states of the excursion funnels; the off and on states of the lights indicating a connection with the Big Red Buttons; the highlights and eyes on Atlas and P-Body; even the "eyes" of Wheatley and GLaDOS. The test chambers in Portal were deliberately made mostly cool blues in contrast to the warm oranges of the behind-the scenes-areas.
  • The Half-Life series in general is fond of this (orange HEV suit, blue G-Man, orange Resistance, blue Combine, blue Citadel in Half-Life 2 contrasting with the orange destroyed Citadel in Episode 1, etc).
  • The video game adaptations of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows use practically only blue and orange shades throughout the game.
  • Every boxart for the classic Mega Man series features this in the cover. Once Zero (red) was introduced, he was often used for contrast with Megaman (blue).
  • Metroid Prime Trilogy:
    • The original Metroid Prime has two distinct types of Phazon. Their respective colors, indeed, are blue and orange (the latter inflicting damage at a rate 82% faster than in the former's case). The orange variety is only found in the Impact Crater, where the Final Boss awaits.
    • Metroid Prime 3: Corruption uses this for box art and other artwork, but it's downplayed in the game itself. While blue is prominent because of Phazon becoming more abundant, orange is largely limited to Samus and her gunship. Shades of orange and some of yellow and/or cream are present in the areas and ambiance of Bryyo and Elysia, but nowhere else.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword exaggerates it for the Silent Realm in order to emphasize how alien the alternate dimension is. Everything turns red whenever Link is spotted.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild uses it extensively to distinguish between incomplete (orange) and complete (blue) objectives. Orange and blue are also the primary highlight colors for Ancient technology and shrines.
  • Mortal Kombat 9 has this on the cover and, to a lesser extent, on the main menu background; both achieve this by putting Scorpion and Sub-Zero opposite each other.
  • The title screen of Aleste 2 features redhead Ellinor Waizen and the title in red-orange lettering against a deep-blue background.
  • Singularity: only in the time-warped alternate-2011, though. In 1955, another color palette is used. This is to help show off the unnatural state of the world in 2011.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • Sonic and Tails, where the titular hedgehog and his fox companion are colored blue and orange, respectively.
    • Shadow the Hedgehog — although not orange-colored — features an orange aura in his spin-related attacks to contrast Sonic's bright blue color.
  • The original Castlevania for the NES had most, if not all, of its foreground scenery orange, complete with many blue backdrops throughout the game. Even Simon's sprites were a yellow-orange to help him pop out. Averted in Vampire Killer for the MSX2, which used a color palette of more subdued browns and shades of gray.
  • X3: Reunion's boxart features a orange lava planet with the series' signature "X" overlaid on it, showing a healthy blue planet. In the Xtended Terran Conflict Game Mod, Aldrin, a neutral system that most of the Multiple Game Openings begin in prominently features a massive blue Earth-like world backlit by a yellow-orange nebula.
  • Final Fantasy X has Jecht wearing an orange-red sash, wielding a sword with red details, and he's associated with fire. His son Tidus meanwhile wears an outfit with dark blue colorings, his sword is bright blue, and he's associated with water.
  • Dissidia: Final Fantasy, The Emperor shoots out two differently colored Flares, one orange and one blue. This is to let players tell them apart, since the two attacks behave differently. Tidus and Jecht also return with the same color associates as in Final Fantasy X. Additionally, Order's Sanctuary is a water-filled white and blue field, while Edge of Madness is a black and red volcanic wasteland — the two arenas are the thrones of the rival gods Cosmos and Chaos.
  • Red Faction Guerrilla is set on Mars, a planet coated almost exclusively in red-orange dust. Indeed, most of the games environments are variations on this theme. So rather than have the traditional orangey-yellow explosions and muzzle flares on the guns, the flame effects are distinctively blue. Furthermore, the antagonistic EDF buildings are all a dark blue with bright blue lights on them, making them pop out from the surrounding landscape (unlike their brown uniforms and cars).
  • The Color-Coded Multiplayer in Team Fortress 2 may be red vs. blue, but the developers explicitly state that the reason so many of the early maps were set in desert environments was to create a contrast between the warm-colored rocks and dust and the blue sky.
  • Monday Night Combat makes its teams orange and blue.
  • Counter-Strike: Global Offensive uses counter-terrorist blue and terrorist orange-yellow as team colors.
  • Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, the Black 2 box has blue (to represent electricity) while White 2 has reddish-orange (to represent fire). This also goes with the black and white contrast present in these games and their prequels.
  • Asura's Wrath: Asura himself is painted and surrounded in orange flames while many of the enemies are advertised in blue backgrounds. The image on the main article and the box art are prime examples of this among others.
  • Enforced in League of Legends: many players with partial red-green color-blindness complained about the default Color-Coded Multiplayer scheme, so an orange-and-blue Color-Blind Mode was added.
  • An option exists in Modern Warfare 3. By default, teammates have green names and map dots and enemies red, so the colorblind assist option changes those colors to blue and orange, respectively.
  • Legacy of Kain, the two protagonists, Kain and Raziel, are color-coded like this. Kain wears a red sash around his chest while Raziel has blue skin, and their checkpoint emblems in Defiance are red and blue-green. Raziel devours blue souls while Kain drinks red blood. Blue and green are the colors of the Spectral Realm, Raziel's native plane of being, while orange and red are the colors saturating the hell dimension of the Hylden, which Kain visits late in the game. There's also Defiance's "neutral" loading screen — the character specific ones are orange and blue.
  • The Amstrad CPC version of Cybernoid had the status bar framed in blue, while the level walls were orange. The Mission-Pack Sequel reversed this color arrangement.
  • Turbo Girl on the Amstrad CPC had the border art in flaming orange and shades of blue, with most elements of the first level using the same colors.
  • Tiny and Big is set in a desert with vibrant blue skies. The first two levels particularly use this trope, with Tiny's bright cyan laser cutter serving as a stark contrast to the orange-browns of the environment.
  • The Mood Lighting of Los Santos in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas has this, with the sky being a strong shade of blue, and the ground heavily orange tinted, coupled with heat haze to make the place look truly hot and smoggy.
  • Elite: Dangerous uses a ton of orange (and the occasional bit of yellow or red) in its HUD. Teal is used more sparingly, but it's there. In fact, your primary and secondary fire groups are color-coded orange and teal, as is your throttle (to indicate whether you're in your optimal maneuvering thrust band). Modding the config files to change the HUD colors is popular, but this can negatively affect the radar's color-coding of targets.
  • The infighting between the two leaders of the Golden Path in Far Cry 4 is represented by a blue elephant, who represents Sabal (who wears a blue jacket), fighting an orange tiger, who represents Amita (who wears an orange jacket). The uniform of the Golden Path is a blue outfit with a yellow logo and bandanna, but in a lot of light the yellow looks orange. Your skill tree is also divided between orange tiger skills and blue elephant skills.
  • Transistor has this everywhere, right from the start, where the blue of the eponymous sword contrasts with the reddish-orange colour scheme of, well, Red.
  • In James Bond 007: The Duel for the Sega Genesis, shades of blue and orange dominate the background palette for most of the game. The exceptions are Mission 2 (the only level set in a natural environment) and Mission 5, which replaces the oranges with purples and reds.
  • The Splatoon series uses covering everything in neon ink as a main gameplay mechanic, so Color Contrast is essential between teams. While there are many combinations the games, blue and orange is the most featured pair for the original game, being used in trailers, promotional artwork, and the box art. The orange Inkling girl and blue Inkling boy are even considered the poster children for the franchise, being the default representatives when appearing in other games such as Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. In a more practical use of the pair, activating color lock mode forces all team colors to orange and blue, since those two provide the most contrast for most colorblind people. In Splatoon 2, however, the default colors are instead green and pink. In Splatoon 2, the Octo Expansion also uses the classic blue and orange ink from the first game in the boss fight with Inner Agent 3.
  • Undertale has blue colored attacks which will only damage you if you move while it moves through you and orange attacks which will damage you if you don't move.
  • As of the Full Spectrum Combat update, Robocraft gives a choice of 16 colors to color your robot with. However, twelve of them are only available to premium account users. The others can only pick between white, gray, blue and orange.
  • Days and nights on Pandora in all Borderlands games are only differentiated by the color filter (orange for daytime, blue for nighttime). More subtly, there's the reddish-orange and dark yellow of Jakobs (marked Western-inspired Nostalgia Filter, high base damage, no elemental effects) contrasting the cobalt blue of Maliwan (futuristic and sleek, low base damage, always elemental)note .
  • Halo 3: The game's box art has this.
  • The Rebel ships in FTL: Faster Than Light have orange-painted hulls with bright-blue stripes running on them. Red-Tail, a variant of the Kestrel cruiser, features such a paint-job.
  • There's a Flash platformer called Tealy and Orangey - one of those "you control two characters with the same buttons" ones, where one half of the screen is blue and the other is orange. Tealy and Orangey are two balls of their eponymous colors and are unaffected by hazards of the opposite color.

    Visual Novels 
  • Digital: A Love Story. The Amie Workbench's color scheme (itself a sendup of the original Amiga Workbench) uses white, black, orange, and blue.

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Phineas and Ferb: Phineas wears an orange striped shirt with blue shorts. He also has orange hair and blue eyes. Some minor characters also do this, an example being librarian Sherman(one of the members of the band that Phineas and Ferb work to reunite), who wears and orange shirt with a blue tie.
    • During "Gitchee Gitchee Goo" the color filter switches back and forth between orange and blue. The most prominent background shapes are blue, creating a stark contrast during the points when the filter is orange.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic makes habitual use of this trope in its character designs:
    • This trope helps highlight the friendly rivalry between the orange Applejack and the cyan Rainbow Dash. While it's mostly a bonus for the toy box art, this has rarely been used due to miscommunication between the animation and toy divisions.
    • The Wonderbolts, on top of their yellow and blue outfits, also mostly come in shades of orange and blue in regards to their coat and mane colors. Spitfire and Soarin', the two most prominent Wonderbolts and the ones who get most speaking parts, are respectively yellow with a fiery orange mane and icy blue with a navy mane.
    • This trope is also associated with Princess Celestia, who raises and lowers the sun and is associated with the day, and Princess Luna, who controls the moon, safeguards dreams and is associated with the night. Celestia is generally associated with warm, orange-spectrum colors: her magic glows a golden yellow, and her throne is orange and red. Luna, besides being colored navy blue herself, has a deep blue magic aura. In the movie, Luna gets her own blue throne next to Celestia's orange one, and each is depicted with a stained glass window above it — Luna's has a blue depiction of the crescent moon, while Celestia's has a bright orange sun.
    • This is especially visible in Luna and Celestia's Superpowered Evil Sides, Nightmare Moon and Daybreaker. Nightmare moon is clad in blue armor, has a mane consisting of a flowing, navy-blue star field and eyes with light blue scleras and teal irises, and is drawn with a blue outline. Daybreaker is clad in orange armor, has a blazing orange and yellow inferno for a mane and eyes with burnt-brown scleras and glowing yellow irises, and is drawn with an orange outline.
    • This is visible with Starlight and Sunburst, two old friends who are often star in shared episodes and who played important roles in each others' backstories, as well as their respective parents, who are heated rivals and often butt heads. Starlight and her family tend towards blue-spectrum colors, whereas Sunburst and his tend towards oranges and other fiery colors. Starlight is purple, with a cyan streak in her mane and tail and the same color prominently displayed in her cutie mark; her father is purple, with a green mane and tail. Sunburst is light orange with a darker orange mane, while his mom has a burnt orange coat and a reddish mane. His dad, although only seen in flashbacks, has a yellow coat and orange mane.
    • The Hooffields and McColts, a pair of Feuding Families from the episode of the same name, have their rivalry and division highlighted by this color contrast. The Hooffields are exclusively colored in shades of orange, tan and burnt reds and browns and have curly beards, hair and tails. The McColts, by contrast, have slate blue, gray and teal coats and straight beards, tails and hair.
    • My Little Pony: Equestria Girls:
      • In the first movie, the Big Bad Sunset Shimmer is a primarily orange and red character with some yellow hues. The main heroine Twilight Sparkle, on the other hand, is colored lavender, violet and blue.
      • In Rainbow Rocks, the antagonist band the Dazzlings have the contrast between themselves — the lead Adagio Dazzle is yellow/orange, while her bandmates Aria Blaze and Sonata Dusk are in teal and purple color schemes.
  • Hey Arnold! uses orange and blue contrast in their credits, popping the yellow names of the crew out of the blue backround. And in the Halloween special, it was actually orange.
  • Ned's Newt: Ned wears an orange shirt, while Newton is entirely blue (almost blue in some of his forms).
  • In Avatar: The Last Airbender, the Grand Finale has two determining fights happening in parallel: Aang/Ozai and Azula/Zuko. Both were red, or a kind of orange, versus blue. In one fight, Blue was good, in the other, blue was evil; in both, the fights were made all the more dramatic for the contrast.
  • Transformers Animated: Jetstorm and Jetfire are like-minded twins. The complimentary nature of their respective blue and orange color schemes also reflects the fact that they are Combining Mecha.
  • In the original G1 Transformers series, the Autobots' crashed-spaceship-used-as-an-H.Q. is orange, and the Decepticons' crashed-spaceship-used-as-an-H.Q. is blue (well, purple).
  • Wander over Yonder: Wander's body is orange and Sylvia's is blue. They're the two leads and traveling companions.
  • Steven Universe: Pearl's main outfits utilize a golden yellow/peachy pink and teal color scheme, so it comes off as a pastel variation on this trope.
  • The Amazing World of Gumball:
    • The two main characters, Gumball and Darwin, are blue and orange respectively. The same contrast is also made when their mother, Nicole, and Darwin are together, since Nicole is the same blue as Gumball.
    • Same with the Official Couple, Gumball and Penny post-"The Shell".
    • Recurring character Felicity Parham is orange and her son Billy is blue. The former also has blue lips.
  • Life With Loopy: Loopy has robin's egg blue hair and cornflower blue eyes and her older brother, Larry, has red-orange hair and light orange eyes.
  • In Scaredy Squirrel, Dave is a blue skunk who wears an orange shirt and vest.
  • Many examples in Ready Jet Go!. Bergs wears an orange shirt and blue jeans. His orange shirt also contrasts with his co-worker Dr. Rafferty's blue shirt. Sunspot's orange fur contrasts with Moonbeam's blue fur. And Mindy wears an orange shirt and blue denim shorts.
  • In Storm Hawks, Piper's outfit is mostly blue with various orange sections, and she wears an orange headband to compliment her navy/cobalt hair.

    Real Life 
  • Blue and Orange is a popular color set for team colors, from schools through the pros and in almost every sport, including auto racing.
  • This trope is the reason the old-fashioned 3D glasses for anaglyph 3D images use red and cyan; as complimentary colors, they filter the three main colors of light into one the two lenses (green and blue mixed creates cyan, and red is just red). Other, less common, anaglyph color patterns include red and green, magenta and blue, and magenta and green, but it's the red and blue that works best and have stuck around.
  • Following the 2011 Canadian federal election, the government was split with the Conservative Party of Canada (blue) in power and the New Democratic Party (orange) forming the Official Opposition. Interestingly the NDP's policies are also largely agreed to be in sharper contrast with the Conservative Party than the previous opposition: the Liberal Party (red).
  • Titan, the largest moon of Saturn, has orange clouds, but a dark blue atmosphere.
  • Life vests and life jackets tend to be bright orange for this exact reason. They make swimmers stand out against blue water, and thus more likely to be rescued in an emergency.
  • Related is the concept of Safety orange, which is often used by hunters and construction workers to stand out against the blue sky.
  • Sunsets on the blue-colored Earth are colored orange, but sunsets on the orangey-red Mars are colored blue.
  • The 1970s logo for London Weekend Television has a blue-white-orange stripe that forms the letters LW. The 1980s revision changed the orange to a red.
  • The NTSC analog television system's YIQ color space has the orange and blue contrast along the in-phase (I) axis and the green and purple contrast along the quadrature (Q) axis. More bandwidth is allocated to I than to Q because the eye is more sensitive to orange and blue contrast.
  • Some forms of colorblindness make it difficult to see red or green (or both). As a result, this can force a person to only see yellow/orange and blue. This is inverted with yellow-blue colorblindness (tritanopia) which forces a person not too see those colors.
  • The colour of the sand in some areas of Namib Desert is vivid orange, and the contrast with a clear blue sky is simply stunning. Have a look at Google Images search for the words 'orange blue Namib'.
  • Technically not allowed in traditional Western European Heraldry, since Orange (called "Tenne") and Blue (called 'Azure') are both classified as 'colors', as opposed to the 'metals' "Or" (gold/yellow) and "Argent" (silver/white), and the rules forbid the use of color on color. Artistic license in the actual colors chosen means that a gold or yellow can be rendered as quite orangey, thereby sneaking past the prohibition.
  • The first flag of the Netherlands, the Prinsenvlag, was an orange-white-blue tricolour, as are the flags of New York City and Albany and the former flag of South Africa, all of which were based on the Prinsenvlag due to the important role the Dutch played in those areas.
  • Often employed on food packaging to make it stand out, most notably the Scottish drink Irn-Bru and the UK snack food Wotsits. To some people in the UK, this colour combination evokes these things regardless of what it's used for.
  • Road construction signs, as the bright orange contrasts to the sky.
  • The logo of Nickelodeon is frequently orange-colored, while that of its nightime counterpart (Nick @ Nite) is blue-colored. And the logo for their preschool block (and later channel) Nick Jr. has the "Nick" portion in its trademark orange, with "Jr." in light blue.
  • The New York Mets have worn a blue-and-orange uniform since their inception in 1962 for a very simple reason: they honor the former New York National League teams, the Dodger blue and the Giants orange.
  • Some hospitals employ this in their rooms, orange for evening and blue for daylight. Blue light suppresses melatonin during the day while orange light lets healthcare workers go about their tasks with reduced disruption of a patients sleep cycle.
  • Copper is an orangey-red metal, which burns with a blue flame, and makes several vividly blue or green compounds and ores.
  • Some double stars, most notably Almach and Albireo, offer a very nice contrast between an orange primary star and a secondary that appears blue -green for some observers-.
  • Shortly before sunset and after sunrise. In photography both periods share the nickname "Blue Hour". Everything takes on a bluish shade, which often contrasts with manmade lighting: usually an orange tint.
  • Tide Pods are notably blue and orange.

Alternative Title(s): Blue Orange Contrast, Teal And Orange, Orange And Blue Contrast, Blue And Orange Contrast