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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 finish reading this article, this color combination will be everywhere you look. It will follow you around and constantly haunt you. Thankfully for most people, this effect fades after a few days.

Basic complementary color theory states that two contrasting colors "pop" when put together, 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.

While other pairs of complementary colors are associated with specific concepts, fiery orange and cool blue are strongly associated with opposing concepts — fire and ice, earth and sky, land and sea, dawn and dusk, invested humanism vs. elegant indifference, good old fashioned explosions vs. futuristic science stuff (and the obligatory Good Colors, Evil Colors contrast). 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.

Early two-color (red and green) Technicolor (1916-1935) rendered everything in teal and orange. In the hands of adept art and costume designers, the results could be striking (e.g., 1930's King of Jazz or 1932's Doctor X). Potentially jarring to modern audiences is early filmmakers' custom of making most of the movie in black and white, then switching to color for one scene or reel (e.g., 1928's The Wedding March or 1933's The Vampire Bat). With the introduction of three-color Technicolor in 1934, enabling a greater variety of color, blue and orange palettes ceased to be a technological limitation.

In the modern context, this trope has gone beyond simple colour grading and into set and costume design for the grading later. For example, a room might have blue walls and a brown cabinet with an amber lamp while the female lead is in a yellow dress, all of which can be color-graded to create the Orange/Blue Contrast. If the female lead has orange hair, expect the male lead to often wear blue clothing to contrast with it. If you wish to die of alcohol poisoning, take a shot every time the set and costume design dovetail to force the contrast.

Games have also picked up on this trend. A discussion of the coloring trends — especially in orange as they pertain to comics — can be read read here.

Additionally, using orange and blue is generally the best option to cater to the colorblind when color is essential, especially in video games. As orange is predominantly red, with a little bit of green, and blue is, well blue (cyan also has a lot of green), people unable to register one color can still pick up the contrast using the remaining colors.

Subtrope of Mood Lighting and sister trope to Unnaturally Blue Lighting and Warm Place, Warm Lighting, as well as 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 common in music; in both cases, something is pushed up a notch in post-production, removing all subtlety from the sound or picture. Can be a factor in Digital Destruction. See also Red/Green Contrast and Yellow/Purple Contrast.


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  • In a 2018 Australian fashion promo video, the female model's attire is an orange dress and an orange hat, whereas the two male models (Trekkies would recognize the black-haired one as Evan Evagora, the model-turned-actor who portrayed Elnor on Star Trek: Picard) are garbed in blue suits.
  • Proto, the mascot of Protegent, is Whyatt/Super Why recoloured into this colour scheme.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Aggretsuko: Retsuko is an orange-furred red panda (likely representing her fiery temper, determination to do her best at work without letting her coworkers annoy her, and love of metal music) who wears a blue uniform (likely representing the calm, friendly personality she has when someone isn't pissing her off).
  • In Asteroid in Love, the Color Motifs of Mira and Ao are these two, in that order, which fits their status as an Energetic and Soft-Spoken Duo, also in that order. Specifically, Mira is a Vibrant Orange, while Ao is a combination of several Blue Tropes.
  • The Digi-Destineds, Taichi "Tai" Kamiya (Taichi Yagami) and Yamato "Matt" Ishida" (Yamato Ishida) in Digimon Adventure, are The Leader and The Lancer and have their crests and crest empowered digivices colored orange and blue respectively. Tai's Digimon, Agumon, has orange skin and blue stripes in Champion and Ultimate form.
  • Digimon Data Squad: Marcus and Thomas's respective Digivices and battle auras are orange and blue. Appropriate, as they are expies of the aforementioned Tai and Matt. Like Tai, Marcus's Agumon has orange skin and blue stripes in Champion and Ultimate form. Marcus is a Hot-Blooded street fighter while Thomas is The Strategist.
  • Dragon Ball:
    • The Turtle School gi, most famously worn by Goku, fits this color scheme: orange overshirt and pants with blue undershirt, wristbands, and shoes. In the original Dragon Ball anime, it was red and black rather than orange and blue, but in the switch to Dragon Ball Z it shifts to the modern colour scheme. Additionally, it contrasts with his first gi and his Dragon Ball GT gi, both of which are blue.note 
    • Heck, this trope even applies to the colours Goku and his rival Vegeta wear (orange and blue respectively). As for Vegeta himself, he has long been associated with blue undersuits and armour with a yellow trim.
    • 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 Super Saiyan Blue form has a Heavenly Blue aura.
    • In the Moro arc, this applies to Goku and Moro’s Battle Auras during their battle on earth, with Goku’s Ultra Instinct Sign being blue and Moro’s being orange.
  • Twins Amiboshi and Suboshi in Fushigi Yuugi. Calm and mature Amiboshi wears blue, while his hot-headed, emotional twin Suboshi wears orange.
  • 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.
  • The Duel Gundam has this going on in Mobile Suit Gundam SEED, its main body is mostly blue and light grey, with orange for its forehead gem and chest vents. With the Assault Shroud equipped, it gains an additional shade of blue, as well as more orange on its missile pod, chest armor, leg thrusters, and other bits of armor.
  • This is Naruto's original color scheme. After the Time Skip, he swaps the blue for black, which then becomes his default look. Deliberately invoked as the author based the colour scheme off of Goku's from Dragon Ball and since Sasuke is Naruto's rival, he wears blue just like Vegeta.
  • Pretty Cure:
    • Downplayed in Futari wa Pretty Cure: The energetic, athletic Nagisa/Cure Black has orange hair, while the intelligent, demure Honoka/Cure White has dark blue hair.
    • In Futari wa Pretty Cure Splash★Star, Kaoru Kiryuu has dark blue hair, while her school uniform is a light orange.
    • In Suite Pretty Cure ♪, Hibiki inverts Kaoru's example by having light orange hair and wearing a blue school uniform.
    • In HappinessCharge Pretty Cure!, Ohana/Cure Sunset has an orange colour scheme, while her twin sister Olina/Cure Wave has a blue colour scheme. Together, they form the Aloha Pretty Cure team.
    • In HuGtto! Pretty Cure, the calm, blue-haired Saaya has a one-sided rival in the form of the haughty, orange-haired Ranze.
    • In Hirogaru Sky! Pretty Cure, early fight scenes are often against an orange sunset to contrast Cure Sky's blue colour scheme. Once Cure Wing is introduced, he primarily fights against blue skies, which contrast his orange colour scheme.
  • Ride Your Wave: Masaaki Yuasa intentionally used orange and blue to define the color contrasts between fire and water. Also, the film's two leads, Hinako and Minato, are often colored orange and blue respectively.
  • In Romeo × Juliet, Romeo and those aligned with the Montagues are colored cool blues, greens, and violets, while Juliet and the Capulet sympathizers are warm oranges, reds, and browns.
  • 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.
  • In Toriko, this is the titular characters main colors with his clothes being orange, with his blue hair going along with it as well along with his dark blue shirt and boots.
  • Weathering With You: After Hina clears the sky for the fireworks festival, one of the following shots has a blue-lit NTT DoCoMo Tower in the foreground and an orange-red lit Tokyo Tower in the background.

  • Alexandre Cabanel's The Fallen Angel: The primary hues of the painting are orange and blue. The former is in Lucifer's ginger hair, cream-colored skin (notably orange on the torso), and red-rimmed, teary eyes; plus some small orange touches in his blackening wings. To a lesser extent, a bluish orange is present in some of the background angel's clothes and hair. Blue, on the other hand, is present in the overall lighting and shading of the painting, background elements due to atmospherical distortion, some angel's clothes, and Lucifer's eyes and wings. The contrast is somewhat downplayed but still very noticeable.
  • 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.
  • The Persistence of Memory: Two prominent colors in the painting, showing its heightened take on reality. The landscape and one of the clocks is orange, while the water and the other clocks are tinted blue. It was inspired by the Catalan seaside.
  • The Scream (Munch): In most of the versions of the painting, the bright and unnatural orange of the sunset contrasts with the deep blue of the water below the dock, helping it become a very striking image.

    Asian Animation 
  • Lamput: Lamput, the main character, is orange while Fat Doc and Slim Doc, the villains, are a dark shade of gray-blue.
  • Pongdybory of Noonbory and the Super 7 has blue skin and wears an orange beanie.
  • Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf:
    • Done with some of the logos. For example, the Flying Island: The Sky Adventure logo has the title in orange and the subtitle in blue.
    • The blue, bell-adorned neck ornament worn by Weslie, the hero, is a contrast to the orange beret worn by Wolffy, the villain.

    Comic Books 
  • The colorists at DC Comics in the early Eighties seem to have really loved the color orange, especially on the Superman titles.
  • The Thing has orange, rocky skin, and is commonly depicted as wearing his blue Fantastic Four uniform. He also has blue eyes.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Leonardo is the leader and eldest of the turtles and wears a blue mask. Michaelangelo is the youngest and wears an orange mask.
  • Deathstroke's classic costume is blue and orange.
  • Taskmaster, whose role in Marvel is similar to Deathstroke's, also wears a blue and orange costume, with some white added. The similarities may be because both characters were designed by the same artist.

    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.
  • In Powdered Gold and Pottery, Shouto's hero costume incorporates soft blue and orange colors to symbolize his ice and fire powers. Its pastel shades are also meant to contrast sharply with how Endeavor wears dark, bold colors.

    Films — Animated 
  • Aladdin: Most scenes feature both blue and orange prominently. Even the main characters have blue/orange contrasts in their outfits.
  • The Adventures of Tintin (2011) 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 (orange clownfish) and Dory (blue regal tang) 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:
    • In the first movie, the then-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 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.
    • Forgotten Friendship has Sunset Shimmer (again) and Trixie Lulamoon, who 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.
  • In Turning Red, the 4*Town boys all wears orange shirts (a colour no other character is associated with) with blue jeans, each styled to match their personality (ex. jokester Aaron T. has overalls with one strap unbuckled, athlete Aaron Z. has a tank top and cut jeans to replicate a basketball uniform, etc.)
  • Orange-furred Nick and blue-clothed Judy from Zootopia.
  • One of the posters for Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf: Dunk for Future uses this to contrast Team Defenders, shown in blue at the top of the poster, and Team Tiger, shown in orange at the bottom.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Adam & Paul: The scene where Adam and Paul wander around high on heroin has orange streetlights contrasting with blue shadows.
  • Ad Astra: At the Lima station, there are multiple shots contrasting blue and yellow lighting. In at least one scene, this contrasts the coldness and isolation of space with humanity and human connection.
  • 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.
  • 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, some 15-20 years before it became commonplace.
    • The sequel Blade Runner 2049 follows through with this tradition with its poster artwork and in the film itself with uses of strong orange palettes (particularly in Las Vegas) and moody blues at night.
  • Brooklyn: When Eilis and Tony get married at city hall, he wears a blue suit, while she wears an orange skirt suit.
  • Darkman: The poster of this Sam Raimi film is something of a predecessor of this tend in movie posters. The blue comes from the nighttime sky and the light of a helicopter flying overhead, and the orange from the blazing fire to the right.
  • 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 Double: Found throughout. 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.
  • Drive (2011): 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 Fly (1986) has an obvious example — the text and graphics on the telepod-controlling computer are blue and/or orange on a black background — but the colors are subtly, extensively used in conjunction with light and shadow elsewhere. In the early going, Veronica's editor/ex-lover Stathis, who is a Clingy Jealous Guy, is associated with shadows and orange lighting (i.e. her finding him taking a shower in her apartment). Scientist Seth, her new and true love, gets light and blue tones. But then Seth makes a Tragic Mistake that results in a Slow Transformation and Split-Personality Takeover. He becomes associated with orange/shadow and his decaying human skin takes on a rusty reddish-orange shade. Come the final 20 minutes (which take place at night) blue comes from the lighting and Veronica's blue dress, and as Stathis becomes a Hero Antagonist he gets a blue-gray sweater. The extremes are pushed as Seth's final "Brundlefly" form emerges and Stathis shoots out the cables connecting Ronnie's telepod to the others, followed by the botched teleportation destroying part of a pod, leaving the entire loft a blue-suffused scene as smoke fills it. As with The Empire Strikes Back, this film predates most uses of the trope by a good two decades. David Cronenberg historian William Beard's commentary track on the 2019 Blu-Ray goes into thorough detail on the film's use of color.
  • The posters and DVD covers of GI Joe The Rise Of Cobra give a very blatant contrast, having the Joes stand in a blue background, while the Cobra stands in an orange/yellow background.
  • The Hobbit:
  • 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.
  • Hot Tub Time Machine has a deep teal and orange tint.
  • Most of Hugo is like this, not just from the lighting and color grade, but from the source set and costume design being almost exclusive made up of blue and orange hues. This ends up lending a stylized, Deliberately Monochrome effect highly reminiscent of the black/white films it celebrates, just with a modern tinge.
  • 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.
  • Hunky Dory, set during a famous heat wave, is washed out in a beautiful gold, but a few evening scenes are a soft blue.
  • I, Frankenstein has it in almost every shot. You can get sick of teal and orange from this one movie alone!
  • Jurassic World and its sequel Fallen Kingdom exploit this trope heavily. For example, Dr. Wu's lab in the former is graded blue so that it contrasts with the orange of the famous amber mosquitos. Claire Dearing has red hair that contrasts with Owen Grady's blue shirt, and when Claire isn't around, Owen tends to wear a brown vest over his shirt.
  • 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.
  • MonsterVerse:
    • Kong: Skull Island: In an extreme long shot when the Sky Devils are about to fly into Skull Island's Perpetual Storm barrier, the clear sky and the ocean on the left side of the screen are lit in blue, while everything on the right side is lit in burnishing orange light from the sun being at the storm's edge.
    • Godzilla vs. Kong: Most of the film's posters and promos, and ultimately the film's opening sequence, tend to invoke this contrast by directly aligning the titular Titans with either color palette, creating a clear contrast in images which feature both Titans. Godzilla is aligned with a greenish-blue palette reflecting his aquatic elemental alignment, and Kong is aligned with a reddish-orange (or alternatively earthy-brown) palette, reflecting his earthy elemental alignment. The color alignments furthermore reflect that in this film, Kong is the more human-aligned Titan who's more focused on what's in front of him, whereas Godzilla is the more ruthless Titan who's ultimately more focused on the bigger picture.
    • The teaser for Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire features Godzilla's skull emanating blue light and Kong's skull emanating yellow light in the foreground, while their mysterious new enemy stands between them in the background in a reddish light.
  • 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.
  • Ophelia uses this on most of the film's posters; most of them depict red-haired Ophelia in a blue dress, in front of a blue background. Considering Ophelia herself wears blue a lot in the film, she's practically a walking example of this.
  • Out of Sight uses orange lighting for scenes in sunny Florida and goes with mostly blue hues when the action shifts to snowy Detroit.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Star Wars:
    • 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.
    • The main poster for The Force Awakens is lit 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.
  • 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.
  • War and Peace (1956): In the poster, the characters ("peace") have a blue background, while the battlefield ("war") has an orange background.

  • 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.
  • Hilda and Richie: Both foxes are colored orange; Richie plays this straight through most of the first book as he wears blue clothes, contrasting his orange fur. Hilda downplays this as her default wardrobe color is purple but does wear a light blue dress towards the end of the first book.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Awake (2012): the two different universes that the show alternates between each get their own color palette: 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.
  • In the earlier seasons of Bar Rescue, a recon would be punctuated by a white outline of the bar layout on a royal blue background. When an area of the bar was described in the narration, such as a speed well, it would be highlighted in orange.
  • Burn Notice: Watch out for Michael's orange skin, paired with a light blue shirt.
  • 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.
  • 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 others were in dark blue shadows.
  • Doctor Who: The new series does this a fair bit, especially the sixth series.
    • "42" is prominently orange-lit, set on a mostly-orange spaceship falling into an orange sun. This trope comes into play during the scenes with Martha and Riley stuck in a blue-lit escape pod.
    • "The Sound of Drums": The warehouse/flashback scene. The warehouse is dark blue except for the fire, Gallifrey has an orange sky (as established previously), and the Doctor's fire-lit face is 50/50 as he starts his monologue.
    • "Nightmare in Silver" uses it to show the two sides of the Doctor's mindscape when the Cyber-Planner starts taking over.
    • The Thirteenth Doctor's TARDIS console room, as revealed in "The Ghost Monument", has glowing orange crystals and blue lights in the walls.
      • The Thirteenth Doctor's outfit features a noticable amount of blue accents, contrasting with the amber light of her sonic screwdriver.
      • Earlier, the Eleventh Doctor's first console room's walls were an orange-copper colour, contrasting with the bright blue of the police box exterior and door frame.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Gotham: Virtually every scene is rendered in this palette to the point of absurdity. The cityscapes, however, are not.
  • H₂O: Just Add Water: The mermaids have orange tails, contrasting heavily with the blue of the water around them. Mako Mermaids: An H₂O Adventure reveals that mermen have blue tails, contrasting even more with the orange of the mermaids than the water does.
  • House: The show's pilot episode employs an extreme version of this trope, with all colors other than certain shades of orange and blue being completely desaturated. This visual style wasn't carried forward to the full series, but it continued to inform the color scheme of the hospital setting throughout the show's run.
  • 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.
  • Kamen Rider
    • Kamen Rider Agito: G3 the Secondary Rider has blue armor with orange eyes.
    • Kamen Rider Kabuto: Gatack the Secondary Rider is predominantly blue with orange accents, including the eyes.
    • Kamen Rider Den-O: Rod Form, Urataros' Den-O form and the second Imagin form, is predominantly blue with orange accents including the eyes. Urataros himself has a blue Imagin body with orange eyes.
    • This trope, and the former three examples, are highlighted in Test! The Rider Look-Alikes!!, an installment in the Kamen Rider Decade: All Riders Super Spin-off webisode series.
    • Kamen Rider Double has the Nasca Dopant, who is predominantly cyan with orange accents on its visor and body, as well as two scarves that slowly fade from blue to orange. Its powered-up form, the R Nasca Dopant, removes this contrast and becomes primarily orange and red.
    • 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.
    • Kamen Rider Gotchard has the titular Rider's suit colored mostly cyan, with orange elements like it's eyes and belt. The show later introduces another very similar Rider, Kamen Rider Gotchard Daybreak, whose suit is mostly orange with cyan elements.
  • Star Trek: Picard:
    • In "Maps and Legends", the glowing blue graphics on the LCARS screens juxtapose the dark orange walls of the Utopia Planitia Shipyards.
    • In "Broken Pieces", the chamber where Elnor's Fight Scene takes place has Unnaturally Blue Lighting, but the hallway leading to it has orange illumination. Depending on where the actors are standing, they may be bathed in both blue and orange light.
    • In "Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 2", the sapphire blue wings of the synth butterfly that Picard admires gradually become bright orange; it expands from the center, spreading outward towards the tips before receding and returning the wings to their original blue shade.
  • The Star Trek: Discovery episode "Point of Light" features a Split-Screen Phone Call between Ash Tyler in a dark, orange-lit cavern on Qo'noS and Michael Burnham in her blue-lit cabin on Discovery.
  • Veronica Mars: The first season has a very obvious distinction in color-grading when depicting the past (in blues and cooler colors) versus the present (in oranges and warmer colors). It's less emphasized in the second season and entirely gone by the third, which carries over to the movie and the fourth season.
  • Uchu Sentai Kyuranger: The Orange and Sky Blue Rangers, Stinger and Kotaro, are paired together, both as a sub-unit of the larger team and because they have a big brother/little brother character dynamic.
  • Ugly Betty: Orange and blue show up frequently, in the decor at both Mode and the Suarez household, and in clothing like Betty's blue and orange poncho that she wears in the first episode. The contrast becomes even more pronounced when the Suarezes go to Mexico and the scenes there are given the yellow tint that all American media set in Mexico gets.
  • Ultraman Ace: Vakishim is mostly blue when viewed from the front and mostly orange when viewed from the back, which serves as a quick visual indicator that it's a Mix-and-Match Critter Yapool created from a caterpillar (blue) and a space monster (orange).


    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 The 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.
  • In the Darker and Edgier variant of Lights' "Ice", this is indicated by the Mortal Kombat-like energy bursts used by each character: orange for the heroine, blue for the villain.

  • Godzilla (Stern)'s artwork leans heavily on shades of orange and blue for various reasons, generally creating a thematic contrast between certain entities.
    • The playfield artwork uses eye-catching oranges and blues for various effects: the former accompanies exploding buildings, fire, and general destruction, while the latter is associated with the Xiliens and electricity (particularly when it comes to Mechagodzilla).
    • The Limited Edition artwork uses it as part of a fire-water dichotomy, associating Godzilla with orange-hued fiery destruction and Mechagodzilla with the deep blue ocean.

    Professional 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".
    • The blue Rahkshi, Guurahk, has orange eyes as well, though so do all the other Rahkshi. Likewise with the blue Skakdi Vezok and Nektann, and the blue Makuta Vamprah (though in 2006 and from 2008 on, almost all villainous characters had orange eyes).
    • Nokama in her Toa Metru and Toa Hordika forms also had orange eyes to contrast her blue body.
    • Also the Ga-Matoran Vhisola, whose primary color is blue.
    • Likewise with the blue Boggarak and its orange eyes.
    • 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 
  • The title screen of Aleste 2 features redhead Ellinor Waizen and the title in red-orange lettering against a deep-blue background.
  • 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.
  • Battlefield 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.
    • 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 are washed in orange.
    • Explosions and muzzle flashes are notably orange in color.
  • Blinx is orange, and wears a blue jacket.
  • Borderlands: Days and nights on Pandora in all 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 
  • Brink!: Orange for Resistance, Blue for Security, all other colors for scenery.
  • Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons: The confident older brother wears blue, and his more timid younger brother wears orange.
  • 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.
  • Conker's Bad Fur Day: Conker is an orange squirrel wearing a cyan shirt.
  • Counter-Strike: Global Offensive uses counter-terrorist blue and terrorist orange-yellow as team colors.
  • Crash Bandicoot is a walking orange-blue contrast; a creature with orange fur wearing nothing but blue pants. In Crash Team Racing and Crash Nitro Kart, he also drives a blue kart. Ripper Roo in the former is the inverse, having blue fur and driving an orange kart. Crash's sister Coco is also orange, and primarily wears blue overalls (or in later games, blue jeans).
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Fast Racing League: Orange and cyan are the two phase colors used in Neo and RMX. Switching to the correct color when going over a corresponding element will provide a speed boost.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • 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.
  • FTL: Faster Than Light: The Rebel ships have orange-painted hulls with bright-blue stripes running on them. Red-Tail, a variant of the Kestrel cruiser, features such a paint-job.
  • 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.
  • 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.).
  • Halo 3: The game's box art has this.
  • The video game adaptations of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows use practically only blue and orange shades throughout the game.
  • Hollow Knight: The starting areas, Howling Cliffs, Dirtmouth, and the Forgotten Crossroads, all have a similar dark blue color scheme, which makes the orange Infection stand out as something abnormal compared to the rest of the environments. This becomes even more pronounced once the Forgotten Crossroads becomes the Infected Crossroads.
  • Jak and Daxter: Jak wears blue and is quiet and reserved. Daxter has orange fur and is loud and hammy.
  • 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.
  • Just Cause 3: The devs have stated that they were invoking this when designing the country of Medici, contrasting orange rocks and sand with clear blue sky and sea. The colour scheme is also present in the flag of the rebels, to contrast with the Red/Green Contrast colour scheme of Di Ravello's regime.
  • 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.
  • 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 Legend of Zelda:
  • 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).
  • Mega Man:
    • Every box art for the classic series features this in the cover. Once Zero (red) was introduced, he was often used for contrast with Mega Man X (blue).
    • Atlas (orange) and Thetis (blue) from Mega Man ZX Advent are this: Atlas is a hyper-aggressive (presumably) human social Darwinist girl who prefers brute force in combat and wants to use Model W to cause a Forever War, while Thetis is a rather calm Reploid boy who uses a halberd with very fluid techniques and loves the environment (especially underwater environments) to the point where he wants to use Model W to punish humanity for polluting the oceans.
  • Metroid:
    • Samus' orange Varia Suit contrasts with the cyan Zero Suit she wears underneath it, the blue outfits worn by Galactic Federation staff, most types of Phazon (and thus Dark Samus), and Sylux, a violently anti-Federation rival bounty hunter.
    • In the original NES game, the orange Varia Suit contrasts with the opening areas of Brinstar, which predominantly use a blue color scheme.
    • 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: Hunters contrasts Sylux's blue with Spire's orange, with Sylux wanting to use the artifact everyone's looking for to terrorize the Federation and Spire wanting it to find his people.
    • 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; the Space Pirates' home planet features large amounts of red.
    • Metroid Fusion: Samus starts off with the blue Fusion Suit, while the SA-X is mimicking her orange Varia Suit.
  • 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.
  • Monday Night Combat makes its teams orange and blue.
  • 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.
  • Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door: Grubba's primary, passive form, interacted with as an NPC, is mostly blue in color. His much more active, aggressive powered-up form, which is fought as a boss, is instead bright orange.
  • Pokémon:
    • 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.
    • Also appears in the Primal Reversion forms of Groudon and Kyogre in Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire.
    • This is also the same case for Solgaleo and Lunala respectively in Pokémon Sun and Moon.
    • Fitting with the "past x future" theme of Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, both versions have contrasting elements using orange and blue. Professor Sada wears orange prehistoric-like clothes and accessories, while Professor Turo wears a futuristic blue outfit. The same applies to the version mascots: Koraidon is predominantly orange, while Miraidon is predominantly blue. The trope is also present in the individual design of Koraidon, which has a mostly orange body with blue at the base of its plumes and antennae.
  • 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 repulsion and propulsion 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.
  • Progressbar 95: Blue segments are correct and orange ones are wrong (you can still collect them, but you won't get the bonus points blues would give).
  • Red Faction Guerrilla is set on Mars, a planet coated almost exclusively in red-orange dust. Indeed, most of the game's 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).
  • Robocraft: As of the Full Spectrum Combat update, the game gives a choice of sixteen 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.
  • 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.
  • Smite: Order structures show up as bluish-green on the map and Chaos structures show up as orange.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • The titular hedgehog and his fox companion Tails 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.
  • Splatoon uses covering everything in neon ink as a main gameplay mechanic, so Color Contrast is essential between teams. While there are many combinations in 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 Series Mascots for the franchise, being the default representatives when appearing in other games such as Mario Kart 8 Deluxe and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. In a more practical use of the pair, activating color lock mode in this first entry forces all online multiplayer team colors to orange and blue. The Octo Expansion campaign in Splatoon 2 makes a Call-Back to the classic blue and orange ink in the boss fight with Inner Agent 3.
  • Star Wars: The Old Republic: The Darkside marker is orange instead of the more obvious red, which 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).
  • Stealth Bastard: The paired, handheld teleporter devices are orange and blue.
  • Tealy and Orangey has one half of the screen be blue and the other orange. Tealy and Orangey are two balls of their eponymous colors and are unaffected by hazards of the opposite color.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Tomb Raider II: Some of the level with the Maria Doria are strongly orange/teal; surprisingly for a non-realistic PC game from 1997.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Warframe: Plenty of sceneries feature a lot of contrast between orange and blue, such as dim orange lighting inside Grineer galleons and sealabs supplemented with blue light coming through the windows, terraformed Mars having brown canyons under clear blue sky or blue Corpus platforms floating through Jupiter's orange atmosphere.
  • This is heavily featured throughout Wick (2020); the cathedral is mostly blues and blacks, while the area surrounding Wick and any candles he lights is gold and orange.
  • Wordle: High contrast mode substitutes orange and blue for green and yellow.
  • X3: Reunion's boxart features an 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.
  • XCOM 2: Whenever the Council Spokesman appears, his facial features are hidden in darkness, with a glaring orange light to one side of him and another equally strong blue light on the other.

    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.
  • Hiveswap Friendsim: The fourth volume features Tagora and Vikare, a tealblood (a shade of blue) and a bronzeblood (a shade of orange), respectively. The same goes for the eighth volume, which features Tyzias and Chixie, who are likewise also respectively a tealblood and a bronzeblood.

  • The book cover of the webcomic Gifts of Wandering Ice. A yellowish candlelight of a lantern against the blue ice.
  • In Unit-M, Agent Orange is a walking embodiment of this trope, sporting orange body hair and blue skin.

    Web Original 
  • Looming Gaia: Evan wears a lot of blue while his best friend/boyfriend Lukas wears orange. Evan is friendly and good-natured, while Lukas is stoic and cynical.

    Western Animation 
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • The Backyardigans: Features best friends Pablo, a blue penguin, and Tyrone, an orange moose. Interestingly, they respectively form a Red Oni, Blue Oni duo.
  • Chowder: Blue-skinned and nice Mung Daal clashes with and has a rivalry with the orange-skinned and snobbish Endive.
  • Danny Phantom: Jack and Maddie Fenton wears orange and blue jumpsuits, respectively. Jack is immature and childish while Maddie is much more sensible.
  • 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.
  • Jackie Chan Adventures: Jackie wears a blue shirt with khaki-colored pants and is the calm, sensible Technical Pacifist. His niece Jade wears an orange hoodie with blue jeans and is hotheaded, cunning, and ready to fight first, ask questions later.
  • 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.
  • The Loud House:
    • The main character, Lincoln, is normally wearing an orange Polo shirt with a pair of blue jeans.
    • He also has this dynamic with his best friend, Clyde, who has blue stripes on his shirt.
  • Muppet Babies (1984): While his adult counterpart is a Redhead In Green, Baby Beaker's orange hair is contrasted by a light blue pyjama shirt, which is adorably oversized for him. The 2018 reboot reverts back to the green lab coat.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: Makes habitual use of this trope in its character designs, employing it in some form whenever characters appear in contrast or association with each other.
    • This trope helps highlight the friendly rivalry between the orange Applejack and the electric blue 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 Glimmer and Sunburst, two old friends who often star in shared episodes and who played important roles in each others' backstories. 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, burnt reds, and browns and have curly hair. The McColts, by contrast, have slate blue, gray, and teal coats and straight hair.
    • Shimmy Shake and Lighthoof, two cheerleaders who are effectively a single character in terms of personality and never seen apart, are distinguished from one another almost solely by their color schemes. Shimmy Shake's eyes, mane, and coat are bright orange and her cutie mark magenta, while Lighthoof has a cyan coat, aquamarine mane and eyes, and a purple and dark blue cutie mark.
  • Ned's Newt: Ned wears an orange shirt, while Newton is entirely blue (almost blue in some of his forms).
  • 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 an 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.
  • Rabbit Ears Productions: The climax of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is illustrated with a largely blue and orange palette, which fits well with the terrifying mood of the scene.
  • Ready Jet Go!: Many examples. 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.
  • The Ridonculous Race: The Tennis Rivals have this motif. Pete wears an orange sweatband and has orange trim on his predominantly white and yellow clothes. Gerry wears a blue sweatband, and his clothes are colored blue and white.
  • Scaredy Squirrel: The title character is an orange squirrel dressed in a blue shirt, while his best friend Dave is a blue skunk who wears an orange shirt and vest.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Ahsoka Tano has orange skin, blue eyes, and blue stripes on her montrals (the white sensory organs on her head that resemble hair). In season 7, she gets blue lightsabers and the clone troopers she is working with have painted their helmets orange to go along with their white and blue armor in her honor.
  • 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 Quartz soldiers encountered in "The Zoo" are mostly Amethysts from the Prime Kindergarten and are purple. However, many of them are Jaspers or Carnelians from the Beta Kindergarten and are consequently orange or reddish-orange.
  • Storm Hawks: Piper's outfit is mostly blue with various orange sections, and she wears an orange headband to complement her navy/cobalt hair.
  • Transformers:
    • 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 blueish-purple.
    • Autobots Huffer and Dion (Orion Pax's friend in the past) have the orange–blueish purple contrast.
    • Both of Optimus Primal's Transmetal upgrades in Beast Wars employ this trope, with his first upgrade granting him an orange robot mode and blue beast mode. His second upgrade, courtesy of his taking in Generation 1 Optimus Prime's spark to save it, distributes the orange and blue equally in all of his modes, much like his ancestor/namesake.
    • Transformers: Animated: Jetstorm and Jetfire are like-minded twins. The complementary nature of their respective blue and orange color schemes also reflects the fact that they are Combining Mecha. Their commander Sentinel Prime also shares their colors, being mostly blue with orange highlights.
  • Wander over Yonder: Wander's body is orange and Sylvia's is blue. They're the two leads and traveling companions.
  • Work It Out Wombats!: Zeke's orange fur contrasts with his blue shirt, as well as his brother Malik's blue fur. Super's blue fur contrasts with her orange dress. Sammy has orange skin and blue stripes on his back.
  • Zeke's Pad: The titular character has blue hair and wears an orange shirt, drawing attention to himself (no pun intended) as the main protagonist.

    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 complementary colors, they filter the three main colors of light into one of 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.
  • John Logie Baird, a Scottish television engineer, invented the Telechrome, an early attempt at color television. It used a CRT with two electron guns. They corresponded to cyan and red-orange phosphors, two complementary colors chosen to display skin tones accurately. Perhaps if a video has a particularly extreme blue and orange theme, it would look just fine displayed on a Telechrome. Ultimately, Red, green and blue were decided for color TV, using CRTs with three electron guns.
  • 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. An airplane's "black box" will also be orange for the same reason.
  • 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 color blindness (tritanopia) which forces a person not to see those colors (even though tritanopia people can distinguish between yellow vs blue, but not blue vs green, so therefore blue/green colorblindness should be a more accurate description)
  • 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. New York City's use of blue and orange extends to several of its sports teams, including Major League Baseball's Metsnote , the National Basketball Association's Knicks, the National Hockey League's Islandersnote , and Major League Soccer's NYCFC.
  • 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 nighttime counterpart (Nick at 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.
  • 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 patient's sleep cycle.
  • Europe's two main continental Association Football competitions, the UEFA Champions League and Europa League, identify themselves respectively with blue and orange.
  • Copper is an orangey-red metal that burns with a blue flame and gives the color to several vividly blue-to-green compounds and ores, such as turquoise, malachite, chrysocolla, and copper(II) sulfate pentahydrate.
  • 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.
  • In the Georgian and Victorian periods, blue and orange were Britain's main political colors, representing the Tories and Whigs respectively, although there was regional variation.
  • Birds such as kingfishers, bluebirds, and azure buntings use a combination of blues and oranges in their plumage to attract mates or make their presence and territorial claims conspicuous to rivals. Some poisonous frogs and fishes likewise use contrasting blue and orange markings to signal their toxicity to potential predators.


Video Example(s):

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


Mermaid and Merman tails

Zac takes Evie on a date through the reef, allowing the viewer to see how their tail colors complement each other.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (5 votes)

Example of:

Main / OrangeBlueContrast

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