A captured or otherwise helpless victim (we'll call her Alice) is stripped of her clothing as a form of torture or humiliation.
This can be the prelude to serious sexual assault, but the point of the exercise is to torment Alice by leaving her bare and exposed to the eyes of her captors — frequently Come to Gawk is involved. It's especially cruel if Alice is forced to self-strip, symbolizing the complete loss of her freedom (though being stripped by the antagonist is still pretty cruel). The temperature will often be quite cold as well, causing Alice to shiver.
A strip search by the police or other security forces may fall under this trope, particularly if we are dealing with Corrupt Cops or we already know Alice is innocent.
The captive's reaction depends to some extent upon whether it's Alice or Bob being stripped. Alice may blush and cringe, and the I Have You Now, My Pretty subtext will be quite evident. Bob is more likely to cover his humiliation under a mask of defiance, while the sight of his naked body (whether from Heroic Build or... other endowments) may cause his male guards to feel ashamed and inadequate. When a male is Shamefully Stripped, this is often a sign that the villain is a sexually voracious woman. Alternatively, the villain may be a Depraved Bisexual, Depraved Homosexual, or Psycho Lesbian victimizing a same-sex captive.
Related to Defeat by Modesty (a character is unable to fight due to his modesty being compromised) and Undressing the Unconscious (a character has their clothes removed while they were in an unconscious state). Fanservice for some people, and sometimes specifically meant to be this by the creator — although some instances of this are so cruel that even the easily titillated are likely to be turned off.
Contrast Go-Go Enslavement, in which the torture is that Alice loses the right to choose her own clothing and must wear the outfit her captors provide — clothes which are scandalously revealing or utterly humiliating in some other way. Occasionally a prelude to Bathe Her and Bring Her to Me. Accidental happenstances go into Wardrobe Malfunction or Stripping Snag. If Alice loses her hair instead of her clothes, it's Traumatic Haircut. See also Pervy Patdown for cases where a strip search is performed (or just invoked as an excuse). The opposite is Defiant Strip.
- Anime & Manga
- Comic Books
- Films — Live-Action
- Live-Action TV
- Video Games
- Western Animation
- The girl in this Levi’s commercial gets caught trying to steal a guy’s wallet, so he steals her skirt in return. She’s revealed to be wearing Pink Panties with a Teddy Bear on them, which he reacts to by giving her a flirtatious grin, which she surprisingly reciprocates, unlike a random girl who witnessed the whole thing and just reacts with an annoyed gesture.
- Threatened in The Burning Of Beruns World when Kanril Eleya is trying via Gunboat Diplomacy to arrange a peace conference between the effective leaders of two factions of a failed state. (Previous to this, a Starfleet ship and a Klingon ship had both been bombed by one of the factions.)
Eleya: Mister Smith, please signal your location to me so I can beam you aboard.
Alexander Smith: Can't you see me?
Eleya: We're interested in beaming you up, not a bomb. You've got about ten seconds to comply before I send an airborne platoon to pick you up. At which point I may or may not order them to strip-search you.
- In Going Another Way this is very much how the pilots feel about the whole thing with the test they have to do naked, feeling horribly humiliated by the whole thing and reading all the stuff they have to go through to get cleaned first. To cap it off, Misato knew but kept quiet so they couldn't bail. In a case of karma, they do get their revenge on her in an unusual way.
- Hivefled; to a troll, being stripped of their sigil is the equivalent of this, even if the rest of their clothes stay on. In the prequel, Gamzee is forced to march about the ship at Condesce's heels in a blank shirt, which is worse than nudity as it marks him as a slave.
- Neon Metathesis Evangelion:
- Exactly how the pilots see the upcoming nude synchtest — not as something to laugh about, but as something that would be deeply humiliating. Therefore they (successfully) refuse that test.
- Even before, Gendo has sold Ritsuko out to SEELE in order to protect Rei from them. As in canon, SEELE interrogates her in the nude. Afterwards, Ritsuko feels humiliated and betrayed, and mentally vows revenge on Rei.
- In Nightmare, Kim had a nightmare (obviously) of being abducted by the Lorwardians during her graduation and then beheaded. But not before Warhok and Warmonga strip off her clothes. Ron stops her when she said they tore her blue dress and skip over it.
- RWBY: Epic of Remnant: A racist attacks a little Faunus girl. He accuses her of stealing and tries to force her to strip to prove she didn't. He sneers and says animals like her don't need clothes anyway. Fortunately, Hassan of the Cursed Arm shows up just in time to stop him.
- In What Chapter 372 of Fairy Tail Should Have Been, Erza outright punishes Kyouka for imposing this on her, for the reasons mentioned in the Anime/Manga section on this page, and subjects Kyouka herself to a nastier, more violent, and fatal variation thereof.
- In Princess Leia Slave To Jabba The Hutt, poor Leia is subjected to this three times by Jabba while she's his slave:
- First, she's given the Sadistic Choice of watching Han and Chewie be eaten by the rancor or strip naked in front of Jabba and his entire court. Leia chooses the latter because even though it deeply humiliates her, she would rather be naked in public than let her friends die a horrible death.
- Second after she initially refuses to wear her Go-Go Enslavement bikini; one of the dancers who put it on her takes it off, threatening to leave Leia naked if she refuses to wear her new "clothes." Leia reluctantly agrees to wear the uncomfortable and demeaning bikini because she would rather wear it than no clothes at all.
- Third after the rancor is killed by Luke; Jabba removes Leia's bikini as punishment for laughing at the death of his pet. He doesn't give it back until they get onto his sail barge.
- Heavy Metal: When Taarna is captured by the Barbarian Leader, he has her stripped.
- The Hunchback of Notre Dame: During the climax, when Judge Frollo and his guards are preparing to sentence Esmeralda to death by being burned at the stake and all she's given to wear is a chemise, or a women's undergarment worn during the time period, and it may or may not have been hers after her other clothes were taken. This was fairly common at the time and up until the mid-1800s, buying and selling second-hand clothes was extremely common. In the case of criminals, frequently the jailer would be the one to profit from the sale, so you had to be pretty important/popular to be allowed to keep your own clothes.
- Paprika: Osanai does a variation of this to Paprika in that he strips her of her skin, revealing a naked Dr. Chiba underneath.
- There's an example in Babylonian Mythology when Ishtar, the goddess of life and fertility, descends into the Underworld to face her sister Ereshkigal, goddess of death and sterility. Ishtar has to pass through seven guarded gates to reach the underworld's queen, and at each one, the guards remove more of her attire, which was the source of most of her power. By the time she reaches her sister, she's naked and helpless and so is easily captured and tortured. (A still earlier Sumerian myth related the same happening to the goddess Inanna in Inanna's Descent to the Netherworld.)
- In The Bible:
- There is a Fidelity Test involving the woman accused of cheating on her husband drinking cursed water. (The idea being that the water will not affect her if she's been faithful, but it will have some unpleasant effect on her...and possibly her lover(s) if she hasn't.) * When her husband brings her to the priests, her head covering is removed... and according to some interpretations, some or all of her clothes are too, as a symbol of shame.
- In 2nd Samuel chapter 10, when King David sends comforters to King Hanun of Ammon to console him for his father's death, Hanun is led to believe that the comforters were actually spies being sent for an invasion scheme, and so decides to humiliate them by sending them back to King David with their garments cut off showing their buttocks and half their beards forcibly shaven.
- As prophetic metaphors, in the Book of Isaiah, God tells the female personification of the city of Babylon to take off her clothes and "wade through the rivers" where He will meet her in judgment. In the Book of Ezekiel, God judges Jerusalem by having her female personification be stripped before all her lovers — those she loved and those she hated — so that they can see all her nakedness.
- Jesus in the Gospels is stripped of all His clothing before He is put on the cross (though in most depictions He is given a waistcloth to cover His male parts), which is then gambled off by the guards in fulfillment of Psalm 22:18: "They divide my clothes among themselves, casting lots for my garments."
- In the apocryphal book of 2nd Maccabees, chapter 4, the king was so enraged at the news of Andronicus' murder of Onias the high priest that he not only stripped Andronicus of his royal robe, he also stripped the man of all his clothes and forced him to go through the entire town naked before he was killed.
- Classical Mythology: Princess Andromeda was stripped naked and then Chained to a Rock as a sacrifice to an attacking sea monster until she was rescued and the monster slain by Perseus. Many years later, a similar thing happened to Princess Hesione. This time, Heracles rescued her and killed the sea monster.
- A subversion in the Legend of Lady Godiva. She has been pleading with her husband to lift oppressive taxes on the peasants in their village, and he agrees, on the condition that she ride through town naked. She agrees and uses the nudity as a symbol of the peasants' tax-related plight. He does actually hold up his end of the deal.
- Mahabharata: This happens to the Pandavas after Duryodhana and his uncle Shakuni lead Yudhishthira to gamble away his kingdom, his brothers, and finally his queen Draupadi on a game of dice. Duryodhana orders the brothers to strip since he now owns all their possessions including their clothes but crosses the line when he orders Dushasana to forcibly disrobe Draupadi. Realizing no one can save her, Draupadi prays to Krishna who performs a miracle that causes her sari to keep extending.
- Was said to have happened to Oghul Qaimish, the Empress regent and wife of Güyük Khan, Genghis Khan's grandson, after her attempt to usurp her husband's successor Möngke through a coup was defeated. When she was dragged in naked to be interrogated she supposedly said that only the Khan had seen her naked before, and she was eventually executed by being put into a felt sack and drowned in the river.
- Allegedly, after defeating the Ottoman sultan Bayezid in 1402, Tamerlane forced Bayezid's wife Despina to serve naked at his table. (But the story, like other stories of how Tamerlane humiliated Bayezid, is highly suspect.)
- According to contemporary sources, up to 40,000 people were subjected to this trope when the Ottoman Turks captured Constantinople.
- Subverted in the poem "The Outlandish Knight". The knight makes the maiden strip, rather than ruin her expensive clothes when he drowns her. She pleads modesty to get him to avert his eyes, then pitches him into the sea instead.
- This is the whole idea of a WWE Divas Bra and Panties Match, a Fanservice-intended fight where the diva has to win by stripping her opponent down to her bra and panties. A notable gauntlet match is found here. (The winner took hers off anyway.) These sort of matches were discontinued around 2008 when the WWE started aiming for younger audiences.
- Prior to the Bra and Panties match, the most common type of strip match was the Tuxedo Match, where male wrestlers wore said outfit and won after they — at the discretion of the referee — were determined to have stripped their opponent of his tuxedo (usually, just shorts or boxers were left). The most famous match of this kind pitted Hillbilly Jim vs Mr. Fuji.
- Another male example, most famously by Jake Roberts to Rick Rude during their feud in 1988. “The Snake” warned the “Ravishing” one to cease wearing tights with the likeness of Roberts’ wife, Cheryl, to the ring but Rude defied him. The end result left Rude very embarrassed.
- In 2001, after Trish Stratus apologized to Vince McMahon for some infraction, Vince made her strip, saying "If you're truly sorry, Trish, ..." and ordering her to remove an article of clothing. She was down to her underwear by the time he stopped.
- At AWC's Andy Kaufman 20th Anniversary Party Los Gallineros pulled down Angel's pants, to reveal he had on a G-string.
- One time, Hornswoggle started chasing Melina around the ring. She tried to hide under the ring, but he followed her. A few seconds later, he emerged holding her clothes. Melina, who seemed to be topless, poked her head out from under the ring and begged for help.
- "The Precious One" Gilbert stripped Orlando Colon as El Gran Armando and Pedro Portillo III restrained him on the July 20, 2019 WWC Superestrellas. This was so Gilbert would have more skin to cut as he beat Orlando bloody with a broken wine bottle.
- When Stacy Keibler managed The Dudley Boys, she was caught by the Big Show who pulled down her skirt and exposed her underwear. He then bent her over his knee and gave her an audible spanking that could be heard on camera. Ouch.
- The Dark Crystal:
- After the death of the emperor, SkekUng confronts SkekSil and issues the challenge for supremacy. The Chamberlain responds by declaring the challenge be a Trial by Stone. After the battle, the Chamberlain is stripped of his clothing and outcast by the High Priest as punishment for losing to the new emperor, SkekUng.
- Happens again in Age of Resistance. Seladon dresses like the Skek'Sis, hoping to appease the supposedly benevolent rulers of Thra. By that point, they drop all pretense and flat out admit that they want to kill all Gelflings, before attacking her and tearing off her clothes, and throwing her into a cell.
- The scene near the end of Come From Away where Egyptian Muslim Ali is strip-searched in front of female pilot Captain Bass in violation of his religion is narrated rather than shown, but the two characters’ narration is brutal enough.
- In The Time of Your Life, when Blick interrogates Kitty, who claims to have worked as a burlesque queen (an obvious lie), he forces her to put on a striptease for him on the spot. This is played for tears, not laughs.
- Zoot Suit: Henry Reina watches as Chale, the mystical spirit of World War II-era zoot-suit fashions (it's that kind of play) is beaten and stripped by a (male) mob for being a "draft-dodger." Henry approaches the naked body - and is shocked to find not Chale, but himself staring back at him, quietly sobbing. The doppelganger then bows his head - and when he lifts it, he's been transformed into an ancient Aztec dancer in a loincloth and feathers (again, it's that kind of play).
- Umineko: When They Cry: After Battler surrenders to Beatrice in the second arc, he is found stripped completely except for a chain around his neck that Beatrice uses as a leash. Sadly that dumb railing got in the way.
- In the H-game Yume Miru Kusuri, when the protagonist goes back to campus, he goes to the roof and finds one of the girls he can hook up with naked and about to jump off the multiple story building. When he asks her what happened, she says that she went up there the previous afternoon, the mean girl clique cornered her and made her take her clothes off. Once she was naked, they picked up her belongings and left her stranded on the rooftop. Scared that someone might see her she stayed up there all night, but eventually stopped caring and decided that she might as well end it.
- Manga Soprano: Satomi forcibly takes off Kanade's hoodie to make her the pool's laughingstock, only to find out she has a nice body.
- Last Res0rt has Gabriel attempting to do this with his Compelling Voice. He succeeds with at least two of the sixteen players. It's only until much later that he gives them any sort of clothing, though it's only a slight improvement.
- Narbonic: Male example: after Nick Cricetida is knocked unconscious, he awakes in the villainess's bed naked.
- The Order of the Stick:
- Schlock Mercenary:
- In the story arc "The Sharp End of the Stick", Kevyn, Elf, and their companions are all forced to strip by their captor Shufgar. Since the comic is PG-rated, for much of the story after that, the author uses creative angles and handy scenery to cover the characters' naughty bits.
- In the later story arc "Force Multiplication", Dr. Bunnigus (a former stripper serving as company medic) is subjected to a strip-search by a perverse TSA-like official, who is clearly trying to humiliate her, but she turns the tables on him psychologically by insisting the search take place in public, and humiliating him with the thought that he will never, ever, ever have what he is seeing.