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Power Palms

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Power Palms is the placement of something important on or in someone's palms. This can be something supernatural or technical: a map, a release for special powers, or something of that sort.

If defensive, this may be because of its similarity to the "stop" hand motion. If knowledge-based, this may be because of Buddhist influence, requesting openness.

Related to Power Fist and Hand Blast. This power could potentially be the cause of Offhand Backhand, and is often used to execute the dreaded Facepalm of Doom.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Battle Angel Alita has Don Fua's Noble Void palm, which is fully capable of neutralizing an Earth-Shattering Kaboom inducing antimatter punch from Zekka. That's without even mentioning his black hole generating Hand Blast variant.
  • In Naruto, the Hyuga clan have a chakra-based fighting style which has a focus of palms.
    • Deidara has mouths on his palms and chest which he uses to make explosive clay.
    • Most ninja can only release chakra well through the palms of their hands and the soles of their feet.
    • Naruto and Sasuke are each granted a god-tier Power Palm that doubles as a sealing technique in order to combat Kaguya.
  • Miroku the Monk form Inuyasha has the 'Wind Tunnel' on his palm, which allows him to absorb and destroy basically anything - though, unfortunately, it's impossible to control once unleashed.
  • In Fullmetal Alchemist, Solf J. Kimblee has two halves of a transmutation circle in his palms, when he claps, he can put it together to turn things into bombs. Other characters perform alchemy by clapping, though that is because they have seen the Truth behind alchemy, and can thus do it without a transmutation circle, instead using the clapping motion to turn their arms and chest into an empty transmutation circle.
  • Code Geass has the Radiant Wave Surger, a microwave emitter built into the Guren's right hand. While at first it's limited to defensive and close combat use (by grappling the opponent), it later gets a Mid-Season Upgrade into a long-range concentrated beam capable of sniping foes from afar and a non-lethal One-Hit Polykill mode.
  • Dragon Ball Z:
    • The palms are the most often-used place for Saiyans (and other races) to form and fire their ki as energy blasts.
    • Androids 19 and 20 have ki absorption devices on their palms. Dragon Ball GT has Super Android 17 with the same feature. Even though he, unlike 19 and 20, can absorb energy without using his palms, the palm devices are still there.
  • Bartholomew Kuma from One Piece ate the Paw-Paw Fruit, which gives him paw pads on his palms that can push and repel anything. Anything. Including, but not limited to, people, giant monsters, the air, and even abstract concepts like pain and fatigue.
  • In Gundam SEED Destiny, Shinn's titular Destiny Gundam is fitted with a pair of powerful, short-ranged Palma Fiocina beam cannons in its hands, allowing it to administer a particularly nasty Facepalm of Doom. This was based on the tactic of using the energy-transfer plugs in older suits' hands as Emergency Weapons, which Lowe Guele of Gundam SEED Astray was especially fond of pulling off in his Astray Red Frame.
  • SEED was not the first Gundam series to have suits with Power Palms, though. Perhaps the oldest example in the franchise is Haman Karn's Qubeley from Zeta Gundam and Gundam ZZ, which had a beam launcher fitted in each hand that could detach to form a pair of beam sabers for close-quarters combat. This design was borrowed wholesale much later in Gundam AGE, where it became the standard armament (along with a powerful, slow-firing Chest Blaster) for the UE's Gafrans.
  • Vampire Hunter D. The title character has a parasite that manifests as a face on his left palm with special powers. It can talk and also suck in air, creating a windstorm.
  • Copy Rezo from the Slayers anime has mouths on his palms. These mouths chant spells, allowing him to cast three at once.
  • In One-Punch Man, this is one of Genos's trademarks (aside from getting blown into bits). Then again, he is a cyborg...
  • Okuyasu Nijimura's Stand in Jo Jos Bizarre Adventure Diamond Is Unbreakable isn't called The Hand for nothing. It's right hand has an intricate spiderweb pattern along with two round nodules on the palm, and anything it wipes this hand across gets removed from existence via a Portal Cut! Okuyasu himself says he doesn't know where it goes, and his insistence on using The Hand's right hand is what tipped Josuke off about its power.
  • In Digimon Frontier, Dynasmon has Power Crystals set into his palms, which he can use to fire blasts of fire and light for his Dragon Thrower attack. The broader Digimon lore says that he can use any two Elemental Powers out of ten, but he only ever uses fire and light in Frontier.

    Comic Books 
  • A few characters within Marvel Universe showcase this trope.
    • Not only is Iron Man the for Trope Codifier for Powered Armor Superhero but arguably this trope too. As almost all of his iconic suits have had the ability to fire repulsor blasts from the gloves' palms, which also function as flight stabilizers.
    • Spider-Man has the triggers for his webshooters in the palms of his hands, to produce webs from his wrists. This is the reason his signature hand motion, because the trigger can be selectively pressed with only the middle and ring fingers. This is to keep webbing from coming out every time he claps or makes a fist.
    • The Celestial named Arishem the Judge has a formula on his palm that he uses to decide whether a race will live or die. One X-Factor story arc has Arishem show up at a planet where everyone has superpowers and are divided into three warring factions. As he raises his hand to judge them, they all combine their powers into a single beam that blows off his hand... which was exactly what was required for Arishem to judge them worthy of survival.
    • Emplate, a major recurring villain from the Generation X comic, uses the mouths in his palms to feed on the DNA of mutants — and only mutants. Normal humans do not slake his needs, and non-mutant but otherwise superpowered DNA harms him. A bit of Fantastic Affirmative Action, perhaps?
  • The DCU also has a lineup of characters that have the Power Palms trope.
    • Sunspot, a villain whom Guy Gardner takes care of in Legends, fires energy blasts from a purple gem-like object on his left palm.
    • Jade of the original Infinity, Inc. emits her Green Lantern powers from a mark on either her left or right hand, Depending on the Artist.
    • Wonder Woman Vol 1: Byrna Brilyant's original Snowman armor doesn't seem to have any weapons or extra jet propulsion in the palms, the identical robots on the other hand can shoot "blue snow" from theirs.

  • Buddha's Palm plays this absolutely straight with the titular skill, an absurdly powerful chi blast emitted from the palms. Most characters in this wuxia can expel chi force through their palms at well, notably the hero, Long Jian-fei, who clears a row of mooks coming at him up a flight of stairs by sending his chi to topple every single of them and send the mooks rolling down.
  • Logan's Run. The inhabitants of the city have a Lifeclock (crystal) implanted in their palms. It changes color as the person ages: when it starts blinking red and then turns black (at age 30) the person must report to Carousel and go through a ceremony that results in their death.
  • The Golden Voyage of Sinbad. The slave girl Margiana has a tattoo on her palm that looks like an eye. It has supernatural significance: Sinbad had a dream about it before he met her, and it marks her as the chosen one of the green barbarians' God of the Single Eye: a giant centaur with one eye.
  • In Raiders of the Lost Ark, Toht, the slimy Nazi agent, has one side of the head of the Staff of Ra burned into his hand.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest: Jack Sparrow has a black mark on his palm to indicate how long he has until he must pay his debt to Davy Jones.
  • Iron Man: All of Tony's armors have a pair of repulsor blasters in the palms of his powersuit gloves. Since they are primarily used for flight stabilization, this limits his combat actions while flying; later armors have a jetpack to help with this.
    Pepper: I thought you weren't making weapons?
    Tony: It's a flight stabilizer, perfectly harmless. [blasts himself across the room]
  • The Matrix: Whenever Neo stops bullets in mid-air it is by holding his palm outstretched.
  • Kung Fu Hustle. Sing not only masters the Buddha's Palm. but puts a hole through a building with it.
  • In Titan A.E., the map to the Titan is encoded on a ring given to Cale by his father. When activated, the map is projected on his palm.

  • In A Certain Magical Index, Touma's right hand disrupts any supernatural power it comes into contact with.
  • Most mutant's powers come from their hands in Gone.
  • There is an expression "X is in the palm of my hand" frequently used in anime when a character wants to brag about his power. The idea comes from Journey to the West where Sun Wukong, despite all his powers, failed to jump out of Buddha's hand.
  • In the book In Fury Born, by David Weber, members of the Imperial Cadre have Beta Receptors and Gamma Receptors implanted in the palms of their right and left hands, respectively, that allow them to interface with computer systems.
  • Reign of the Seven Spellblades: During the climactic fight scene of volume 1, Nanao and Oliver make a pincer attack against the Starter Villain from opposite sides to force her to pick one target for their basilisk eye. Oliver realizes too late that the bangs hairstyle that hides their left eye is a too obvious clue that there's something off about that eye—meaning it's misdirection from something else: a second basilisk eye hidden in the palm of their left hand.
  • Chelsea of Superheroes Anonymous emits an Agony Beam from a hole in her palm.

    Live-Action TV 
  • The shacquarava shared by Taelons, Kimera and Jaridians in Earth: Final Conflict.
  • When FOX was a new channel, there was a show about werewolves, called Werewolf (1987). Those afflicted with the curse had a bloody pentagram on their palms.
  • On Stargate SG-1, the Go'a'uld have at least two different pieces of technology — a short-range weapon and a healing device — that direct energy through their palms.
    • In Stargate Atlantis, the Wraith feed by sucking nutrients from their victims through suckers on their right palm. The same palm can be used to revive recently dead humans. One such use of the latter is to torture victims by alternatingly sucking them dry and reviving them. Some of the victims would break and become Wraith-worshipers, treating the "Gift of Life" like a drug.
  • The Doctor Who episode "The Curse of the Black Spot" has an incorporeal mermaid who marks people on their palms. They think they're being marked for death; actually, they're being marked for transport into a hospital spaceship in Another Dimension...
  • Dr. Light in the second season of The Flash (2014) draws energy from starlight and expels it as intense energy beams from her palms.

    Religion and Mythology 
  • Stigmata, bleeding from the palms, is supposedly a sign of divinity, connected to the crucifixion of Jesus.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Call of Cthulhu. The Great Old One Y'golonac (You Fool! You've doomed us all!) has open mouths on the palms of his hands that he can use to drain Intelligence and Power from his victims. When he possesses a human being, mouths open on their palms as well.
  • In Magic: The Gathering all of the five "Gempalm" creatures have abilities seemingly based on gemstones embedded in their palms. They variously use these to burn or drain life from people, strengthen their allies, or make them fly.
  • Warhammer 40,000: The Red Corsairs' leader Huron Blackheart has a Power Fist for his right hand that sports a heavy flamer whose nozzle is in the center of its palm.

    • Most species of the Matoran Universe "eat" (absorb matter/energy) with their palms and consider eating with a mouth repulsive.
    • They can also magnetize objects to their palms, as shown in a brief shot in the film Mask of Light where Takua zaps a kolhii sport stick to his hand.
    • Sidorak has his Rhotuka energy-spinner launcher in the palm of his oversized right hand, with which he can assert limited Mind Control over others.

    Video Games 
  • In Mega Man Zero 4, Zero's Z-Knuckle is a Z-shaped chip on his hand that can be used to steal weapons from mooks.
    • Omega is often depicted with a stylised, glowing Ω on his palm. Its purpose is unclear, although it seems to be an energy focus.
  • In The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Ganondorf blasts Link with a ray of energy that comes out of his palm.
  • A rare, harmless example: Yagyu Jubei's left palm in the second Onimusha title, Samurai's Destiny. Works the same as the Oni Gauntlet.
  • In the Pokémon universe, Lucario channels aura through the palms of its hands (paws?). This isn't evident in the main series games (except for one of its moves being Force Palm), but is more apparent in the anime and Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
  • Speaking of Super Smash Bros., Mario's Fireball seems to be fired from his palm, as opposed to Luigi's Fireball which appears to come from his fingertips.
  • Kai Leng has some sort of powerful gun built into his right hand in Mass Effect 3. Phantoms have a weapon that is very similar, but in their case it appears to be their own biotics rather than external weaponry.
  • A whole class of weapons in Kid Icarus: Uprising. They're reported to draw upon the life force of the user but aren't Cast from Hit Points.
  • Street Fighter: Chun-Li's Kikoken (as well as the Kikosho) is the technique that more closely uses this principle. The Shotos' Hadoken (specifically Ryu, Ken, Akuma and Sakura) use chi drawn from the entire hands, the palms serving mostly to directing the resulting projectile.
    • In Capcom vs. SNK 2: Mark Of The Millennium, Sakura's Hadoken is morphed into the Hadosho, which also fits the trope, being a short streak of light launched straight from the palms rather than a full fireball.
  • In Rival Schools, Akira's Burning Vigor Attack Kikokai is essentially the same as a Kikosho from Chun-Li. Her brother Daigo has it as a normal special attack, and a super-powered version as his B.V.A.
  • In Dragon Age: Inquisition, the mark on the Inquisitor's left hand is used to open and seal up rifts to the Fade.
  • This is the Warlock class's Melee Attack in Destiny.


    Western Animation 
  • In Spider-Man: The Animated Series, Morbius can suck people's plasma through holes on his palms. This may be because of the Never Say "Die" mentality of the times, or because of its saving him from having to actually taste the residents of New York. Apparently, this censorship requirement was a throwback to the Comics Code mentality, when "real" vampires could not be shown (the same applied to Batman: The Animated Series), so the creators had to come up with an alternative way for Morbius to suck blood. Whether this ended up being any less gruesome is up to debate, but it's agreed to look damn creepy. Those suction holes twitch whenever they get a closeup.
  • Transformers:
    • Transformers: Animated: Lugnut can pull a variation on this trope with the "Punch of Kill Everything". He replaces his hand-claws with a bomb and jet engine Power Fist combo, at the center of it is Big Red Button that immediately creates an explosion that can level a cty block if it slams into something.
    • Airachnid from Transformers: Prime, whose blasters are housed in the centres of her palms.
  • Garnet from Steven Universe has her gems on her palms, while she doesn't use it for combat. She does use it to summon her iconic Power Fists.