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Slasher Smile

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You get exactly one guess as to which side is in control.

"He is Bob, eager for fun. He wears a smile, everybody run."
Mike, Twin Peaks

What's the difference between a smile and a grin? The same difference between kissing and tasting.

In the animal kingdom, baring your teeth is a sign of aggression. In the case of humans — well, there's something very disconcerting about a smile that doesn't have an ounce of happiness in it. It's downright frightening when the smile is in anticipation of pain or death — yours, probably. Needless to say, the Slasher Smile does not inspire warmth in anyone who sees it.

The Slasher Smile is the Evil Counterpart of the Cheshire Cat Grin. In general, the difference is in the eyes of the character. If the eyes sparkle, or are mischievously wicked, it's a Cheshire Cat Grin. If, however, the eyes are clearly crazy or malevolent, it's a Slasher Smile. If the grinning person is holding a knife or an axe or some other implement of painful and often bloody death, it's best to assume the worst.


While the Cheshire Cat Grin is a staple of The Trickster, generally one of the good guys, the Slasher Smile is the staple of the Ax-Crazy, unless said hero is a particularly dark or vicious Anti-Hero. Only expect to see a "nice" hero with a Slasher Smile if they've been possessed or suffered a major Freak Out or if they have been taken over by their Super-Powered Evil Side. Also, a devious Chessmaster or Magnificent Bastard is unlikely to look like this - it's too Obviously Evil, and they prefer the subtler Psychotic Smirk.

No, the Slasher Smile is more appropriate for The Dragon, the Mad Scientist, and most especially Serial Killers, but it can happen with any character who is gleefully violent and/or fits any "wild crazy person" stereotypes. Beings who hunt and eat victims we are supposed to identify with will also often have Slasher Smiles... in their case, it means "Hello, lunch!"


Some characters with a Slasher Smile wear the grin all the timein fact, it's physically impossible for them to move their face out of it. For many, this has the added worry of making it harder to tell what they're thinking or feeling, because their face betrays no expression beyond the smile.

Not to be confused with a Slashed Smile (although they sometimes overlap), and has nothing to do with the pleased smiles of Slash Fic fans upon the detection of impending Ho Yay. Hopefully.

Contrast Dissonant Serenity for a calm mood which isn't the slightest bit more reassuring, and also contrast Grin of Audacity. Sometimes paired with the Maniac Tongue. When the smile is merely creepy, it's The Un-Smile. May be part of the fear behind the Monster Clown. See also Technically a Smile.


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  • In the Enzyte Commercials, Smilin' Bob has one of the most unnatural smiles ever seen in an advertisement. It's not MEANT to be a Slasher Smile, but still... BRRR!

    Anime and Manga 
  • Harry from Outlaw Star gives a creepy one when Gene figures out he's been trying to Mind Rape Melfina and another when talking to Melfina about how they're Not So Different.
    • Aisha Clanclan is usually found either smiling a mischievous smile or a genuine smile, due to being a bit of a Genki Girl. But when she gets an excuse to fight with the full power of a Ctarl-Ctarl, such as when she realizes her opponent in an MMA fight is also a Ctarl-Ctarl in disguise, her smile becomes considerably more malicious.
  • Katekyō Hitman Reborn!: Birds. And Mukuro as well. Hooo Boooy...
    • A few members of Tsuna's harem family do this sometimes too, namely Gokudera, and Hibari.
    • Xanxus too. His smile is terrifying and hot.
    • Bel and his twin. Who also adds Cheshire Cat Grin and evil giggles to the mix.
    • A certain Big Bad named Byakuran.
  • Dr. Hell from Mazinger Z and Great Mazinger never smiled. He GRINNED (usually when he thought he was winning or believed he had won. Or simply when he felt people were frightened of him). And it was deeply disturbing. It was even creepier in Mazinkaiser.
    • Tetsuya Tsurugi, The Hero from Great Mazinger, was a Broken Ace usually wore a grim, angry or bitter expression. But when he grinned in battle, it was very eerie.
  • Xellos from Slayers has this in spades. It's less common to see him not smiling than to see him with a smile (or a convenient Psychotic Smirk) on his lips, but if he's smiling and his eyes are open, you're in serious trouble. Especially exemplified as he's sadistically torturing Valgaav in TRY and a highly amused smile never leaves Xellos' face, backed up by a truly psychotic giggle.
  • Bleach:
    • This is used to identify characters who fight for the love or madness of fighting rather than higher ideals, such as with Kenpachi, Ichigo's inner Hollow, Ikkaku, Nnoitra, Ginjou, and Unohana. Ichigo sports one in battle sometimes as well, usually when under the control of his inner Hollow.
    • This is used to identify scientists unleashing their chance to experiment on others For Science! or reveal any bizarre inventions they have created. This tends to be as much a problem for their allies as for their enemies. Examples include Mayuri and Szayel..
      • Possibly one of Mayuri's greatest moments with this is in chapter 593, when he injects a zombified Hitsugaya with a drug that forces him to repeat his past over and over again, asking him if he remembers when he was drugged.
    • It is used to emphasise a character on the battlefield is unhinged and descending into insanity, such as with Tsukishima and Nianzol.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist:
    • Both Envy and Kimbley have serial slasher smiles.
    • Greed, both his first body and in Ling's, have this. Pride's shadows also usually have this default expression as does his body after he eats Gluttony. Must be a family trait since Father was shown to have one back in the days where he was only a blob in a flask and he can still pull it off as shown When he leaves his 'human form' which is just a humanoid blob with these and eyes.
    • Barry the Chopper has one built into his helmet.
    • Some of the minor characters even have these, such as General Raven, when he's trying to offer someone immortality and in his Eye Catch, and also some of the more unsympathetic State Alchemists that participated in the war.
    • In the manga and Brotherhood, Truth almost always has this expression on his face, because he's a sadistic dick who enjoys handing out ironic but disproportionate punishments to people who try to break the laws of the universe. The only exception is when Ed correctly offers to sacrifice all of his alchemist powers to get Alphonse back, Truth displays a real happy smile as he cheerfully congratulates Ed on choosing the right answer and opens the way for him to retrieve Al and dissolves into nothingness.
    • Wrath from the 2003 anime version constantly has these, especially when he's fighting.
    • Gluttony adopts a slasher smile after Dante destroys his vestiges of humanity in the 2003 anime.
    • Also in the 2003 series, Lust adopts an eerie one when she attacks Scar in the 18th episode.
  • When the fake Ashleigh Crichton backstabs his allies in pursuit of a Philosopher's Stone in Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos, he moves from his relatively open and friendly smile to a sadistic grin. At this point his Affably Evil demeanour vanishes entirely.
  • Anti-Hero example and a subversion: Revy from Black Lagoon routinely wears this kind of grin when she's busy gunning down bad guys, particularly during the first major shootout of the series, where Rock sees her smile for the first time and is extremely creeped out. However, that's just Revy on a normal day. What you really want to watch out for is when she drops the grin and goes all emotionless and monotone, because that's when she stops pointing her guns at the bad guys and starts pointing them at everyone.
    • In the manga arc El Baile De La Muerte, Roberta, as her sanity continues to spiral downward into Ax Crazyville, starts sporting these. And so came the time when she snapped one of Shenhua's kukris, WITH HER TEETH, while wearing THE slasher smile of slasher smiles. Badass.
    • Creepy Twins Hansel and Gretel take this trope to a ridiculous level. Think vampires.
    • Balalaika's a kid in a candy store during the "Fujiyama Gangster Paradise" Arc. She's ordering hits, snapping necks, and holding a gun to Rock's head with that huge grin.
    • And, more and more, Rock has been showing a Slasher Smile. You first see it right at the beginning, when Revy challenges Rock, a Japanese sarariman, to a drinking duel.
  • Anemone from Eureka Seven displays a few of these when she fights.
  • K of From the New World. Holy hell. A kid should not have such a bloody face, let alone unleash a tranquil yet heart-stoppingly horrific smile after killing 1,000 people in a single day.
  • Touma of A Certain Magical Index, episode nine. So very creepy and so very very awesome.
    • And intentional. Considering he's not even an antihero, the psychological warfare aspect is neat.
    • Accelerator is always seen with an evil smile when he is enjoying a good fight or a massacre, maybe because his awesome powers makes many times the fights boring, for example when an army tried to beat him, when the Misaka sisters tried to fight him and one the most boring "fights" he had was when Mikoto Misaka tried to attack him, he really looked bored.
  • Agito of Air Gear. He has this whole shark fang thing going on.
  • Yomi from Ga-Rei puts one on when she's under control of the Sesshouseki. It's even creepier when her eye colour inverts.
  • Osaka's attempt to "wake up" Yukari in Azumanga Daioh fell into this from a different angle. Osaka always looks a bit blank, and she was half-asleep when she tried it... which just resulted in her standing in the doorway with a blank, empty smile and a large knife. She had no violent intentions, but she sure looked like someone was gonna get stabbed.
    • Probably her. Earlier in the episode she expressed a lifelong dream of waking someone by banging a ladle on a pan next to their ear. The only thing keeping Osaka from cutting off her own hand was Yukari woke up when Osaka opened the door.
    • A slightly more trope-y Slasher Smile (more of a Slasher Smirk) is here, at about 0:40.
  • Dilandau from The Vision of Escaflowne has every kind of slasher expression in the book.
  • There's been a few characters who do this in Fairy Tail, but the crown for the most disturbing Slasher Smile goes to an all-around psychopath named Jackal, a member of Tartarus, which he sports while slaughtering the Magic Council, as well as forcing a Sadistic Choice on Lucy involving her choosing whether to save the life of a former Magic Councilor... or a pregnant woman, who was crying and trying to reassure her unborn child that everything would be okay. Yes, the Tartarus arc took the Darker and Edgier level of this series Up to Eleven like never before.
    • Though a machine manages to give him a good run for his money. The arc's Doomsday Device, Face, a large pillar with, well, a face on top, looked kinda stoic when we first see it. It turns out there's more though,and we see some with...rather creepy smiles on them.
    • That's nothing. Mard Geer, anyone?
  • Kaguro from Kekkaishi almost constantly has one of these, and an endless supply of lethal blades to back it up.
  • Kuroudo Akabane from Get Backers's happy face.
  • Legato Bluesummers from Trigun has probably the most nonchalant one ever.
    • His boss, Millions Knives, has quite a few of his own.
  • It's hard to find a minor/major character in Hellsing who doesn't invoke this trope.
  • Asuka cracks a lovely example of this smile when fighting the Mass Production EVAs in End of Evangelion.
    • And the EVA units gives it right back, as EVA Unit 01 and the Mass-Produced EVAs demonstrate.
    • Even Shinji shows a couple, most of them during the battle with Zeruel.
    • Some people regard Rei's rare smiles this way as well.
    • One word: Mari.
  • Fruits Basket: Hatsuharu Sohma's Split Personality, Black Haru, has some pretty disturbing smiles that are nonetheless better than the alternative (in the vein of "I'm going to love kicking your ass" is better than "I'm going to kill you").
  • Go ahead, mess with Shiro from Deadman Wonderland. You're going to wish you never did once the Wretched Egg takes over and unleashes a unsettling grin (complete with a skrkt sound effect, no less). Even moreso without her mask. Chapter 53 takes the best of both worlds and makes an already chilling smile incredibly worse.
  • When Guts, the Anti-Hero from Berserk, smiles, it is usually one of these. This should be your signal to run, as he's usually in a blood-spilling mood when he's got that grin.
  • Frequently sported by Viral from Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann.
  • Death Note: As L dies, before he closes his eyes he sees Light looking at him with one of these. Higuchi, too, after getting the Shinigami Eyes. One look at that creepy face and death will follow, without the Death Note.
    • Light again, during the finale (at least in the manga), sports one so big he gets cross-eyed.
    • Mikami Teru, one of the most psychotic of the Kiras, also sports one of these on occasion.
    • The Death God Ryuk also has one permanently etched to his face, along with More Teeth than the Osmond Family. Light showed what a badass he is when he only was seriously freaked out for a few seconds, when Ryuk spontaneously appeared in his bedroom.
  • Naruto:
    • Gaara displays a particularly frightening one of these during his fight with Rock Lee during the Chuunin Exams, after Lee knocks off the sand armor covering his face. It gets worse. Apparently he has that expression 24/7. It's only hidden by the sand armor. After his Heel–Face Turn, Gaara lost the creepy smiles.
    • During particularly grueling battles, Naruto (or rather the Kyuubi displays this, most notably when Sasuke talks to the Kyuubi in Naruto's mind).
    • Naruto also (by himself) displays two slasher smiles in the 101st episode of the anime.
    • And here's another exemplary performance from Gaara.
    • Hidan often wears one in battle.
    • Zetsu seems to have this whenever he's battling someone.
    • Kisame. The only times it usually leaves his face are when he's using a jutsu and has to expel water from his mouth.
    • Kabuto gains one after he absorbs Orochimaru's DNA.
    • Sakura gets one in a comedic fashion after Konohamaru insults her.
    • The normally-stoic Madara Uchiha instantly develops an epic one when he feels the First Hokage's chakra. Between him, Sasuke, and Itachi, it looks like terrifying expressions are just another part of the Big, Screwed-Up Family.
    • In Chapter 677, as Madara activates the Infinite Tsukiyomi, we get the wonderful picture of Kaguya gazing over the world with the moon as her Third Eye.
  • D.Gray-Man's Tyki Mikk will do this sometimes. This is a sign that he's about to pluck out your heart. The Millennium Earl is a cross between this, a Stepford Smiler, and a Monster Clown with his perpetual huge, cheery, and absolutely horrific grin. In fact, every single member of the Noah family seems to do this occasionally.
    • Which now includes the Fourteenth, which is downright disturbing considering his host is Allen Walker. Seriously, who expected the kid to ever look like this?
      • And now Allen doesn't even need the 14th Noah to do this. Somehow, he manages to make such smiles even worse.
    • And the when the Earl is pissed off, the preexisting smile goes so far off the deep end that hiding under the bed begins to seem like a very attractive option. Meep?
    • For someone who doesn't smile very often (or only smirks), Kanda seems just too creepishly happy when the room collapses on him and everything turns into empty space in the Ark. When he comes back, he starts his day by arguing with Allen rather than thinking about how he could've died.
    • Road Kamelot does this sometimes as well too, especially when she starts to get too much fun out of tormenting the main characters.
  • Perpetual Frowner Vicious from Cowboy Bebop rarely smiles. This only makes it spookier when he flashes a particularly chilling slasher smile right as he's picking up the Anti-Hero lead by the neck and throwing him through a stained glass cathedral window.
    • Tongpu from "Pierrot Le Fou" sports one throughout the episode.
  • Last Order: Final Fantasy VII Sephiroth who only ever has a Psychotic Smirk in the original game other media, cracks a surprising grin when clashing with Zack Fair in midair.
  • Shonen Bat/Lil' Slugger from Paranoia Agent.
  • Joshua Christopher of Chrono Crusade has a tendency to smile like this, thanks to the demon's horns on his head driving him insane.
  • Shark Fujishiro from My Bride is a Mermaid often pulls off a lot of these right before trying to eat Nagasumi.
  • Drosselmeyer's smile in Princess Tutu would almost seem like a Cheshire Cat Grin if it wasn't for the fact that he's stark raving mad and takes pleasure out of people's suffering.
  • Iwao Washizu from Akagi. The smile gets wider and wider the more time he's on screen.
  • The Numbers Cyborg Due from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Strikers whenever she goes for the kill, which is almost every scene she's in.
  • Riful from Claymore shows one when she first encounters the Abyss Feeders. Made creepier by the fact that there's a large bite out of her head.
    • Ophelia wears one as her usual facial expression because, well, she's what happens when you give The Ophelia a BFS.
    • Taking Ophelia's cruelty to new heights, Roxanne has an arsenal of rather unsettling smiles. In fact, some of her smiles are also her Nightmare Faces: for example, while losing all her limbs by a recently ressurected Cassandra's Awakened Being form she reacts like this.
      • Here is another example, occuring when she pummels Cassandra with her claymore's handle.
  • Warsman, from Kinnikuman, is a cyborg. Predictably, he normally can't smile... unless he's in his batshit psychotic personality, in which case he sports the Warsman Smile. He did use it once, while normal, to catch an arrow in his mouth, though.
  • With Getter Robo, it'd be easier to list the characters who don't have one of these plastered on their faces most of the time. Ryoma in particular seems to have this as his natural expression.
  • Axis Powers Hetalia: Russia signature move when he's not being a Stepford Smiler or wearing a Psychotic Smirk.
    • Japan imagines Italy pulling one in the strip where he makes binoculars to read people's thoughts. "I'll touch the back of your head to my heart's content", indeed.
  • Even a nice guy like Monkey D. Luffy of One Piece gets one of these, in the 8th opening for the show after landing on a marine ship. Luffy is full of epic grins.
    • Zoro does this often too, which is suitable for a character who is often accused of being insane…or a demon.
    • Sanji cracks some good ones in series, notably towards the end of his fight with Jabra and later when fighting Oars. But his grin when talking about taking down Big Mom viva cake is the winner.
      • Sanji's brothers Yonji and Niji do this often, Yonji when taunting the Straw Hats and later Niji who gives an especially creepy one when he's about assault Cosette.
    • Gecko Moria has a permanent one, but it's most apparent during his Villainous Breakdown.
    • Donquixote Doflamingo has this as his default look, appropriate for what seems to be One Piece's counterpart to The Joker.
    • Eustass Kidd sports one almost all the time, Funnily enough, his face even looks quite similar to the Joker, but even he isn't quite as psychotic as Doflamingo.
    • Blackbeard has had a few.
    • This happens to the Straw Hats (minus Luffy and Nami) when Oars has his horns stuck to the ground and unable to move. Cue the Straw Hats' slasher smiles and a nonchalant, epic, off-screen beatdown of Oars.
    • Much like the Oars example, Luffy, Robin and Zoro get slasher smiles (and Glowing Eyes of Doom in the anime) when they reach the cold side of Punk Hazard and see centaurs wearing warm clothes.
    • Trafalgar Law rarely shows any emotion, but when fighting Vergo he lets one slip across his face.
    • Creepy Child Sugar gets one of these in Chapter 758 when she goes after Luffy.
    • Sabo is a nice guy but... oh jesus one might start wondering if the Revolutionaries are completely good or not.
    • Ladies and gentleman, say hello to Sanji's blushing bride to be.
  • Vinland Saga: Thorfinn, when he does smile. Thorkell's is more of a Slasher Grin, with a big thumbs up thrown in there.
  • Being possibly the craziest bastard in the series, Baccano!'s Claire Stanfield has a warehouse full of psychotic, blood-soaked grins and smirks to put to use. Not to say that Ladd, Czeslaw, and Graham don't get their fair share.
  • Kurogane from Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicles often does this. In fact, that's the only time he ever smiles.
  • Michiko from Michiko & Hatchin sports one right before she breaks through a police roadblock.
  • In Soul Eater, Maka gets one of these when she goes completely nuts while fighting Chrona.
  • The various Blood Knights in Samurai Deeper Kyo often have this in their faces while really enjoying a fight. Top dog Onime no Kyo combines it with Red Eyes, Take Warning and the Glowing Eyes of Doom to create a visage unparalleled in its ominousness.
  • Pokémon:
    • Jessie, in her crazy moments. Here's an example (Tracey Gets Bugged, episode 97)
    • If a Pokémon has sharp teeth and isn't Ugly Cute, expect its grin to look like this.
    • Played for Laughs with Sophocles. He's a little...too interested in the Rotom Dex; wanting to "examine" its "programming" while brandishing a screwdriver.
  • Gyororo from Sgt. Frog.
    • We also see Keroro with a manic grin on his face when he learns Natsumi is afraid of slugs.
  • Mahou Sensei Negima! has Tsukuyomi doing one of these when she fights Setsuna.
  • Two teens of mass destruction of Out Code lapse into this when their real personalities are exposed (Psycho for Hire and Manipulative Bitch, respectively). Interestingly, both of these characters were frail-looking girls. The Mad Scientist who gave them their powers seems to owe his look to Dr. Tomoe.
  • Majin Tantei Nougami Neuro: Neuro has a psychotic grin most of the time, and then he reverts to a parrot-headed-Eldritch Abomination. There's also the twisted, insane looks of the criminals as they confess.
  • Grelle Sutcliffe the Shinigami from Kuroshitsuji has one of these. Made even better and creepier by the fact she had just finished murdering someone a few seconds ago and is covered from head to toe in blood. Too bad it isn't really seen again after this, because she's too busy being a goofball, playing with safety scissors. Yes, really.
  • Chiri gets one completely out of the blue at the end of an episode of Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei. Its utterly random appearance combined with its large number of teeth made it horror in its purest form.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!: Dark Marik constantly sports one.
    • Dark Bakura often has one as well, even moreso during the final arc.
    • Not so much in the anime, but during the Death-T arc in the manga both Kaiba brothers each get a couple at the prospect of killing Yugi and his friends.
      • Seto actually sports one a lot in the manga, especially when he's about to crush an opponent during a duel.
    • In the early chapters of the manga, when Dark Yugi just awakened from his 3000-year long slumber in the Millennium Puzzle, appearing like he still had a few screws loose, he almost always sported one... especially when he declared to a rival that they would undergo a "Penalty Game" if they lost to him. He sports it from time-to-time in later chapters, but by then he mostly favors the cocky grin and whenever he inflicted a Penalty Game, it was more of an intense, scary frown.
    • Dartz gets one when he uses the Seal of Orichalcos in the final battle against Yami Yugi and Kaiba.
    • Quite a majority of the Duel Monsters themselves sport permanent slasher smiles, especially the more demonic ones. Heck, Slifer the Sky Dragon looks like he has TWO!
    • Yu-Gi-Oh! GX: Hell. Kaiser. Ryo.
    • Also from GX, Saiou/Sartorious at first only sports a Psychotic Smirk but graduates to this as a sign that he has been completely taken over by The Light.
    • Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL: Vector, to highlight his insanity.
    • Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V: "Awakened" Yuya was capable giving these out constantly.
  • As a Neat Freak, Ryuuji from Toradora! gets one whenever he cleans. As in, dirt and dust and mold. Combined with his permanent death glare, he looks like he's rejoicing in the thought of committing genocide on entire societies of dust mites and mold colonies. There's a brief shot of one right in the opening theme.
  • Gauron from Full Metal Panic! usually cracks one of these whenever he's not wearing his Psychotic Smirk. HE WANTS TO RAPE YOU!!!
  • Angel Densetsu's Kitano.
  • Hiruma Youichi from Eyeshield 21 has one of these, aided by his fang-like teeth and his habit of constantly carrying large guns when not on the field. In fact, he does it so often that he scares his teammates when he DOESN'T have a slasher smile, and uses it to his advantage against his opponents.
  • Killua from Hunter × Hunter gets one, holding not a knife, but the still beating heart of his latest victim.
  • At the end of the Weiß Kreuz OAV, Ken Hidaka perfectly calmly prepares to kill the man who tried to set up the deaths of his entire team. Then he actually pulls the trigger.
  • Code Geass:
    • Lelouch right after he successfully orders a collective suicide with his handy-dandy new geass. Being only semi-crazy, he otherwise reserves it only for special occasions (such as having just added another few digits to his kill count).
    • This is also the apparent default expression for any Geass thralls ordered to kill someone. Including themselves.
      • V.V. has one during most of the time he's piloting the Siegfried against the Black Knights during their attack on the Geass Order.
  • Several characters in Rosario + Vampire pull this off nicely, but the best example would be Aono Tsukune in his "Ghoul Form." Bonus points for grinning at an attack just inches from his face and then proceeding to beat the shit out of everyone in front of him.
  • In Kimi ni Todoke, when Sawako Kuronuma tries to smile it usually look like this.
  • Ookami Kakushi: The maid in the second half of episode 12 advances on Hiroshi while simultaneously unbuttoning her uniform top and flashing her best smile.
    • Issei indulges in this as well.
    • And in episode 11, whenever Sakaki, now having gone off the deep end, actually does smile, he alternates between this, and Smug Snake smirks. Naturally, the latter is a little less creepy.
  • Lots of characters in Pandora Hearts pull one of these at times. Especially the Baskervilles and Will of the Abyss.
    • Break does this at times too.
  • Gankutsuou: The eponymous Count wears a rather terrifying example of this when everything is going according to plan (which usually involves a humiliating and/or painful death).
  • Dragon Ball Z: Zarbon manages one that's just twisted enough to be freaky, just before transforming into a... rather unattractive salamander-looking thing.
    • Captain Ginyu breaks into one right before he uses his body change ability to switch bodies with Goku.
    • Frieza often has one on his face, taken Up to Eleven when committing genocide on the Saiyans complete with Evil Laugh.
      • Golden Frieza has a particularity ugly one.
    • In the filler "Garlic Jr. arc" in Dragon Ball Z, when Piccolo is infected with the Black Water Mist and turned evil the first thing he does to let us know this to break into one of these smiles. Turns out he's actually faking being infected though.
    • Who could forget Cell? Imperfect (with no teeth) and Semi-Perfect too
    • And Gohan, Gohan sporting a downright menacing one while blowing Cell away with a one-handed Kamehameha.
    • Vegeta gets a magnificent one after getting possessed by Babidi and becoming Majin Vegeta.
      • Even before that, he sports one after he kills Jeice.
    • Super Buu and Kid Buu smile like this by default since they're both textbook definitions of Ax-Crazy characters (or forms in this case).
    • All the movie villains wear one, but Broly is the strongest example.
    • Super Android 17 from GT deserves a special mention complete with drool.
    • Goku of all people sports one right before he turns Super Saiyan 3 for the first time.
    • Black Goku from Dragon Ball Super sports a big one when he is about to kill off Future Trunks.
  • In Zatch Bell!, we have this little beauty from Zophise.
  • Haguro and Ryuuko of Wolf Guy - Wolfen Crest revel in this.
  • Yuno Gasai of Future Diary has a combination of one of these and a Moe Stare on her face on a more or less permanent basis. She is... not well.
    • Minene also sports a kill grin as her default expression, though unlike Yuno, she keeps her cool most of the time.
  • This is Koko Hekmatyar's default facial expression in Jormungand. Though she rarely does her own dirty work, the fact that she is a dealer of death makes this appropriate.
    • Also her older brother, Kasper and his bodyguard Chiquita.
  • Ryuuhei Sawamura and Bryan Hawk of Hajime no Ippo.
  • One episode of Kyou no Go no Ni mentions how nobody remembers seeing Emotionless Girl Kazumi Aihara ever smile. If the first episode is any indication, it's because her smiles end up as one of these...
  • Half the cast of Karakuridouji Ultimo probably has one. It doesn't matter who it is. Piss off anybody and you'll be greeted with any of these expressions.
  • Shizuo Heiwajima of Durarara!! is fond of sporting these right before he's about to hurt someone.
  • In Monster, the unspeakably evil Johan Liebert, commits Mind Rape on a former cop who had killed a boy while drunk and is trying to atone, playing on his guilts. He eventually asks him how he would look his estranged daughter in the eyes and then realizes that he's got him, and then makes one of the most unsettling and terrifying smiles imaginable before asking "well Richard, how about a drink?"
    • The likes of Roberto, Peter Čapek, Hartmann, and Christof Sievernich have some quite unnerving slasher smiles in their own right.
  • The Anti-Hero protagonist of Shamanic Princess directs one at her rival after completing her first Transformation Sequence, made even creepier by her weird eyes. It's one of your first clues that this is not your average Magical Girl anime.
  • Shani Andras and Auel Neider of Mobile Suit Gundam SEED and Mobile Suit Gundam SEED Destiny wear these as their normal expression. Their fellow Super Soldiers Orga Sabnak, Cortho Bauer, and Sting Oakley have also been known to crack them out from time to time.
  • Speaking of Gundam, Desil Galette from Mobile Suit Gundam Age sports a horrific one when he casts off his cute child persona at the end of Episode 13. Seriously, you wouldn't imagine a seven year old to look like this, would you?
  • In His And Her Circumstances, there are instances where Yukino Miyazawa sports one of these.
    • In the anime Yukino gets an epic *series* of different slasher smiles in a rampage after Tsubasa presses her Berserk Button.
  • Kohta Hirano, from Highschool of the Dead, often dons one when fighting "Them". Contradicts nicely with his usual personality.
  • Mimi of Lovely Complex wears one of these when threatening Risa.
  • Kagura from Gintama gets one when her Yato side kicks in harder than she can control.
    • Also her brother, Kamui.
    • Even Shimaru does this to Katsura while the latter gave him intoxicated tea.
    • Besides the above examples, this trope is usually Played for Laughs.
  • Sayaka from Puella Magi Madoka Magica. After being pushed close to her Despair Event Horizon she is seen smiling and laughing while tearing into a witch with her sword. A witch that looks like her love rival. While covered in blood. While her best friend watches on. Poor girl.
    • Sayaka does that again during her conversation with Homura in Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion. She flashes a menacing-looking grin as her reflection becomes that of Oktavia. Homura tries to attack her, but Sayaka transforms into Oktavia and vanishes, leaving only her cape behind.
    • Homura Akemi herself very, very briefly develops one in Rebellion as Madokami comes down to take her to heaven. It serves as a short and extremely unsettling warning that something's about to go horribly wrong, confirmed about thirty seconds later when Homura proceeds to hijack Madoka's powers.
  • Dusk Maiden of Amnesia gives us the horror that is Shadow Yuuko.
  • The first episode of Persona 4: The Animation has Yu with a (completely heroic and yet still disturbing) slasher smile on his face while summoning Izanagi for the first time.
  • In the 10th episode of Phantom ~Requiem for the Phantom, when Reiji begins chasing after Scythe Master, he starts breaking into this twisted grin. Combined with his creepy laughing and this little piece playing in the background and the whole thing easily goes into Nightmare Fuel territory.
  • Jack Frost is the embodiment of this trope. The wider his smile, the bloodier things get. And things get pretty damn bloody.
  • The Master of Synapse from Heaven's Lost Property.
  • Akura-ou from Kamisama Kiss, being a Psychopathic Manchild, has this as his default facial expression. One of the main protagonists, Tomoe, also tends to sport one when he is about to do something nasty. Small surprise since he used to be Akura-ou's partner in crime.
  • Mahiro Fuwa in Zetsuen no Tempest seems to have an emotional spectrum that ranges from 'indifferent' to this. Frighteningly enough, he's regarded as far less of a threat than his best friend.
  • Tsuchiya gets one in Holyland chapter 144 just before he turns a fight around.
  • Attack on Titan:
    • Annie smiles like this when she is correctly accused of being the Female Titan. Made even creepier since this is the only smile (or any other expression other than indifference) she's given so far in the series. Take a look at the way it's rendered at the manga. Sweet dreams.
    • This is also the default expression for some of the Titans due to the way the skin on their faces has stretched. Here is an epic specimen. No wonder Reiner, of all people, freaked out.
    • Eren frequently has one whenever he's thinking about killing Titans, or when he threatens to make Reiner and Bertolt's deaths as "painful as possible."
    • Armin of all characters, pulls one while lying to Bertholt about how Annie is being subjected to torture. It's actually kind of jarring.
    • In chapter 51, Erwin sports one after finding out that titans were once humans. It was so unnerving that even Levi was disturbed by it.
    • Armin also pulls one of these in the second OVA when Jean suggests stealing meat from the commander's office. Makes you wonder how far off the deep end he truly is, doesn't it?
  • Just about everyone in Drifters. It could even be said the heroes do it more than the villains.
  • Kunitoshi Joukyuu, the protagonist of AIKI, loves using these.
  • Queen's Blade: Right before she blows up a part of Vance Castle in episode 1 in an attempt to kill Reina, Melona flashes a grin that's all teeth and malice and WAY too big for her face.
  • Akane and Akari seems to do this at least once per chapter in My Monster Secret. Considering the light-hearted tone of the series, the trope is completely Played for Laughs. Later, Karen seems to be playing the trope seriously, until she reveals her Nice Girl side and began saying adorable things while making this face.
    • Box Girl (WALKING SPOILER) gives a horrifying one here
  • Q from [C] - Control is usually the typical quiet Emotionless Girl, but when she starts to fight seriously all that goes down the drain. And when she uses "Cannibalization", this trope ensues.
  • Assassination Classroom: Koro-sensei is a Perpetual Smiler, who's almost always seen with a Cheshire Cat Grin. So when he becomes extremely angry and breaks out his Game Face, his smile turns into this trope full-force, with his teeth becoming a lot sharper and more menacing.
  • My Hero Academia: Tomura Shigaraki's face is usually hidden by a disembodied hand covering it. However, when that hand is off and he shows his face, he's capable of making some pants-crappingly creepy smiles.

    Card Games 

    Comic Books 
  • The "American" vampires in American Vampire do these really, really well.
  • The Joker from Batman had this expression glued on his face. His "Joker Venom" induces the expression in those exposed to it.
    • Nobody should forget Joker's first ever smile, in the The Killing Joke.
    • The literary example, Gwynplaine of The Man Who Laughs by Victor Hugo, which is commonly cited as inspiration for The Joker, involves a man whose face is horribly mutilated so that he cannot stop smiling and how his psyche is twisted by this. In order to maintain the grin throughout the movie, actor Conrad Veidt had to get metal hooks in his mouth to pull back his cheeks. Nevertheless, the character is a really nice guy. According to Bob Kane and Jerry Robinson, Bill Finger produced this photo of Veidt while developing the character.
    • In Frank Miller's All Star Batman, the Dark Knight himself has one in both his costumed and civilian identity, especially when thinking about his young ward, age 12. Squick.
      • But Batman doesn't have to be written by Frank Miller to give a Slasher Smile, he can give Joker a run for his money.
  • In Supergirl story arc Bizarrogirl, an human-like android created by villain Dollmaker displays a psychotic grin while abducting a child.
  • Superman generally the nicest guy on the planet, can display a very creepy smile, i.e when Clark is affected by Joker Toxin.
  • Anti-Hero example: The Midnighter, in The Authority. He loves his job and he isn't afraid to show it in the scariest manner possible.
  • X-Men: The Juggernaut enjoys his role as an unstoppable engine of destruction.
  • Johnny of Johnny the Homicidal Maniac would usually have one while torturing or killing victims. Mr. Eff and Psychodoughboy had permanent ones because Johnny painted them onto their faces.
  • Judge Dredd: Dredd's undead arch-enemy Judge Death does this all the time as well. Mostly because his lips have rotted off. While hardly hilarious, out of all the Dark Judges, he's naturally the most prone to Faux Affably Evil behavior.
  • In Spider-Man, Carnage's alter ego Cletus Kasady has one of these.
    • The Green Goblin is usually portrayed with having this in the comics and most adaptations. On his human face and his mask.
    • In fact, symbiotes appear to have some sort of demonic smile on their faces sometimes.
    • In the classic Spider-Man vs. Wolverine, there's a scene where they're duking it out in an East German graveyard. Spider-Man thinks, "I'm hitting him hard enough to wreck cars... and I can't get him to stop smiling..."
  • Mystique in the "Wolverine" story arc "Get Mystique"; just before their final climactic confrontation she strips naked, festoons herself with weapons, puts on a slasher smile and says, "Come and GET me, Lover!"
  • Wonder Woman villain Doctor Poison has a big creepy smile, pulled up by metal hooks she slips into the corners of her own mouth.
  • This seems to be the default expression of the Crossed
  • From the The Sandman series:
    • The Corinthian has three: he has devouring mouths instead of eyes behind his shades. Fitting, since he's the eidolon (the word eidolon being especially apt here: it connects strongly to concepts such as delusion, idol, spirit, or bogeyman) or archetype dream that inspires and is inspired by Serial Killers.
    • George in "A Game of You".
  • Evil Ernie. And maybe his button.
  • Ultimate Marvel
    • One of the last things you want to see is Ultimate Hawkeye covered in the blood of the squad you sent to subdue him, holding their weapons and grinning into your security camera telling you, "Run", when you are part of the group responsible for his family's murder. Unfortunately for you, it is the one of the last things you're going to see.
    • Ultimate Galactus Trilogy: Carol Danvers looks way too enthusiastic about handing Marh over to the scientists for an old fashioned vivisection.
  • Bullseye. Yeah, you see that space where he's missing a tooth? That's cause he killed a guy with it.
  • Adam Warlock's evil side, The Magus, constantly does this. It's especially prevalent in the Infinity War miniseries, where he is the Big Bad.
  • Subverted in an issue of G.I. Joe. Formerly masked gunmen hold a family hostage in a remote house with the result being the authorities are not sure at first who are the hostages and who are the hostage-takers. One of them seems to be grinning maliciously all the time and the footage they have of the masked rampage shows them all grinning like maniacs while gunning down innocent people. So obviously the one with the constant grin is one of the bad guys? Wrong, he's the father of the innocent family caught in the middle, and a veteran who had suffered permanent damage to his facial muscles during active military service.
  • Kid Miracleman from the series of the same name is constantly depicted with this facial expression. The scariest example is probably from the cover of Issue #15 (which can be found in the Image Links)- truly horrifying just from the sheer inhumanity of that grin.
  • Max's default expression.
  • Marv from Sin City makes them all the time.
  • Very often shown by Spider Jerusalem from Transmetropolitan. The Presidential candidate known as "The Smiler" also has that name for a very good reason.
  • Grimjack sports one whenever he is in a fight. The smile is an involuntary tick that he developed as a child gladiator where he was known as "The Grinner." Also, combat is the only time you ever see him smiling.
  • Pinkie Pie does a face like this in page 9 of Issue 1 of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic (IDW) complete with a "cut/slit throat" gesture.
  • The magically created Batzarro is the opposite of Batman in every way he can be - so since Batman is grim and serious, Batzarro has a wild, fanged smile (and no eyes, making his smile freakier).
  • Kimura often sports one worthy of The Joker himself. In one case she wears it while carving X-23 up with a chainsaw.
  • While Cyclonus is one of the good guys of The Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye, his preferred brand of smile is less "I am happy that the world is a nice place" and more "I am happy that the world is going to be a nicer place when I finish cutting you out of it." He does occasionally get the other sort, though.
  • Thor's enemy Malekith the Accursed looks like the offspring of Drizzt Do'Urden and Two-Face, with a smile like the Joker.

    Comic Strips 

    Fan Works 
  • Axis Powers Hetalia fanfic Gankona, Unnachgiebig, Unità: The homophobe gave Italy a really scary one. The Bad Touch Trio gave some as well to showcase their pervertedness.
  • In the Jackie Chan Adventures fic Queen of All Oni, Jade gives one to her Jerkass former classmate Drew.
  • Let's Do The Caramelldansen plays it for laughs (presumably):
    "So Vexen smiled, and it was... a purely evil smile. A MANIACLY evil smile. Take every synonym for 'evil', put them before the word 'smile', and you may even get Vexen's smile. It's hard to comprehend how truly terrifying the smile was. But if Hitler and Big Brother had a child, and that child had a child with Satan, and that child had a child with the child of Voldemort and Darth Vader, and that child were to smile, it would probably the closest you could get to how awfully evil Vexen looked at that moment. (Sorry for that image, people) It could make a serial killer cry."
  • When the killer Drew is revealed in the Hannah Montana story I Didn't Sign Up For This, the first thing she does is shoot her accomplice with what is described as "a creepy smile" on her face.
  • In Frozen Hearts, Prince Harken gets one as he's considering whipping his younger brother Hans.
  • The vocaloid fanfic Rotting Camellias often has Meiko flashing one of these.
  • In The Scaly Raptor, Claire manages to give "shark smiles" even before she becomes a T-rex, usually when she's about to make someone's life hell.
  • This Bites!:
    • Mr. 5 and Miss Valentine have these on Little Garden when they meet Cross alone.
    • Used frequently enough with Kureha that Cross compares her to the Grim Reaper no fewer than three times.
    • At the end of Chapter 19, Cross has this reaction after they leave Luffy behind to fight Crocodile...and the rest of the crew agrees to let him give out some spoilers about the upcoming battles.
    • Smoker, of all people, gives one in Chapter 23, after Hina becomes convinced that he, Tashigi, and Cross are right about the corruption in the people they follow, and asks what he has in mind to fix it.
    • Sengoku gets a gold-plated, crazy-ass grin when, amidst all the chaos on Enies Lobby, Spandam idiotically reveals his plan to get control of Pluton and possibly overthrow the Five Elder Stars. The Fleet Admiral takes great pleasure in telling him to report to Marineford to receive "everything he has coming to him".
  • The Serial Killer Pinkamina from the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic blog Ask Pinkamina Diane Pie is well-known amongst the fandom for her smile. One Ask even involved specifically asking her to smile.
  • Outcry: When Nadalia smiles while attempting to harm someone she does so in a way that is described as grotesque, ugly, or wrong.
    Miss Militia: “The thing wearing Annette Hebert’s face smiled at her.

    The smile was… wrong. She’d seen many smiles in her life and could remember each with perfect clarity. She’d seen everything, from the genuine to the false, to the insane.

    This one was… wrong… off. It was as if the thing behind it was merely mimicking what it had seen, as if it had forgotten how to even begin to make the expression and was unable to emulate what it had seen enough to overcome what it was trying to hide.”
  • The Soviets from The Gingerverse do this very often.
  • Samus' default smile in Rise from Darkness seems to be this. Later, ater brutally killing an entire family, she breaks into a grin and starts laughing manically.

    Film – Animated 
  • When he killed Yamagata, Tetsuo let out a rather creepy smile. AKIRA has another good example of when he did this.
  • In All Dogs Go to Heaven after Killer, currently trying to do everything he can to get Carface to spare his life, tells him he has a gun they can use to try and kill Charlie (for good) with, Carface breaks into a wide satanic version. Not just figuratively, either – his face (presumably, we're seeing him from Killer's POV) actually proceeds to transform into an actual devil's.
  • Atlantis: The Lost Empire: When he goes into Villainous Breakdown mode, Rourke has a pretty awesome and crazy slasher smile when he tries to kill Milo with a fire axe. You can clearly tell the guy has gone batshit insane.
  • Gaston sports one at the start of his fight with the Beast in Beauty and the Beast. And yet another after stabbing the Beast in the side.
  • The Monster Clown that appears in Toaster's dream sequence in The Brave Little Toaster has a big one glued to its face.
  • The Other Mother in Coraline does this, particularly towards the end of the movie.
  • Corpse Bride has Barkis Bittern use this constantly cause he's an evil bastard and some of the dead people when they go to the land of the living.
    • Barkis's smile seems more of a Psychotic Smirk – but the rotting dead's grins could definitely qualify, at least when they first arrive.
  • In Frozen, Hans has a villainous smile as he raises his sword to kill Elsa.
  • Ratigan of The Great Mouse Detective sports a huge one after he's convinced he's mauled Basil to death.
  • Judge Claude Frollo from The Hunchback of Notre Dame have a grin The Joker would be proud of; when he raises his sword to kill Esmeralda and Quasimodo, he believes that he's won, and it shows.
    • He also puts on a brief, but huge and sadistic one shortly after he sets fire to the platform Esmeralda is on when he tries to burn her at the stake.
  • The Incredibles: The look on Syndrome's face when he abducts Jack-Jack.
  • In Inside Out, Jangles does this when he's woken up by Joy.
  • Cera in The Land Before Time gives a pretty big slasher smile when she decides upon seeing what is apparently Sharptooth's corpse to use it as ramming practice. However, a few rams in, she soon discovers that Sharptooth was not quite as dead as she originally thought, and just barely managed to survive to tell the tale.
  • The Lion King:
    • Ed the hyena (and to a much lesser extent, Shenzi, Banzai, and all of the other hyenas) actually gains this type of smile when the hyenas all kill Scar at the end.
    • Scar gives one himself to Zazu when he points out how unhappy Mufasa will be that he didn't show up for Simba's birth ceremony. After he tells him this (as well as forcing Scar to let a mouse, his lunch, escape), Scar sarcastically states "ooh, I quiver with FEAR!", flashing this smile when he says the last word, and then tries to EAT Zazu! Good thing Mufasa showed up right at that moment.
  • Ursula of The Little Mermaid does this a few times during the final battle. Her alter-ego Vanessa even pulls one off when she throws a pin at a mirror with enough force to knock it back while gloating about her inevitable victory.
  • In The Lorax, at the end of the Villain Song, "How Bad Can I Be", the Once-ler has one after shouting the last lyrics, "HOW BAD CAN THIS POSSIBLY BE?!"
  • Ay from Mr. Peabody & Sherman sports this when he drives his dagger on Penny's hand during the Ceremony.
  • The Nightmare Before Christmas: Oogie Boogie constantly and Jack has one as his default.
  • In Osmosis Jones, Thrax does this several times throughout the movie. Drix, of all people, gives a pretty good one as well when he plays the bad cop to Osmosis's good cop when they shake down an informant.
  • The Pebble and the Penguin: The Big Bad Drake constantly sports a Trollface-like smile.
  • Pinocchio: The Coachman during his "They never come back as BOYS!" line.
  • In Quest for Camelot, Ruber sports these at times:
    • When he is invading Juliana's home and when he blackmails her into helping him by threatening to kill her daughter, Kayley.
    • He has a crazy one throughout his song when he transforming his human henchmen into ironmen with his potion.
    • When he is melding Excalibur onto his hand with the said potion.
    • He eventually has a creepy one, when he is cornering injured Arthur without mercy.
  • In Ratatouille, Colette's opening Knife Nut sequence to her mentorship of Linguini (and, unknown to her, Remy) is especially scary when she takes on this expression with her question because you know Linguini won't be able to answer it properly.
  • The sirens in Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas give Marina one of these.
  • Rothbart from The Swan Princess gains one of these near the end after he transforms into The Great Animal for the second time.
  • Tom and Jerry: The Movie: The scene where Doctor Applecheeks steals the ice cream truck.
  • Chef, the Big Bad of Trolls does have a lot especially its Terrifying.
  • In Wreck-It Ralph, King Candy/Turbo sports a particularly notable one, in all of his forms.
  • The Blue Meanies in Yellow Submarine have this expression pretty frequently.

    Film – Live Action 
  • The Indoraptor from Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. Technically for a Dinosaur it has the mind of a serial killer, during the scene where one of the antagonists Weatley tranquilizes it to collect one of its teeth. the Indoraptor wakes up (it's not tranq'ed) and smiles before biting off Weatley's arm and killing him.
  • In Addams Family Values, circumstances force Wednesday to... construct... a smile; the result is so horrific it drives other children to tears.
    Amanda: She's scaring me!
  • Several particularly disturbing examples abound in the movie The Babadook. The protagonist, Amelia, sees charcoal-drawn images of herself in a supposed children's book...her eyes are hollow black orbs and she has a huge psychotic grin as she murders her dog, her son and herself. Later, she promises her son that she will keep them "safe". Unfortunately at the time she is pointing a kitchen knife at him and grinning like a complete lunatic. But that's just the warm up. Moments later, she watches the TV half-asleep and listens to a grisly news report discussing a woman murdering her young son with a knife. In the background, barely visible, a Slasher Smile wearing woman is staring from a window... and it's Amelia herself. Oh, Crap!.
  • Mitsuko from Battle Royale before killing Megumi. The girl at the beginning of the film (the battle's first female winner) has a seriously creepy one too.
  • Natalie Portman unleashes a blood-curdling one in Black Swan while portraying her doppelganger in the bath scene. [1]and[2]
  • Jim Carrey has done this trope in Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events, and How the Grinch Stole Christmas! to demonstrate how remarkable his rubberface really is when it comes to expressions. According to one account, it's basically how he got the latter role: "He took his face and he Grinched it."
  • Alex from A Clockwork Orange, whenever he gets deep into the old ultraviolence. (forms at around 1:10)
  • Donnie Darko, every single time he sees his giant bunny-friend Frank. It's a little creepy, to say the least. No teeth in this one, though.
  • Galaxy Quest also makes use of this trope when Sariss, disguised as Fred, arrives on the command deck to kill off the heroes. It's a very well-played Oh, Crap! moment.
  • In Ghostbusters (1984), this, together with a horrifying demon voice, lets Dr. Venkman (and us) know "There is no Dana, only Zuul."
  • Ernst Stavro Blofeld briefly sports one as he's about to subject James Bond to Cold-Blooded Torture in Spectre, and later on, when he takes Bond Girl Madeleine Swann hostage and threatens to have her killed by blowing up the old MI-6 building in an effort to humiliate Bond.
  • The film version of The Man Who Laughs has Conrad Veidt with one of these permanently etched into his face. Considering his best-known role up to that point was a sleepwalking serial killer, the character in this film turned out to be a good deal more sympathetic than one would expect. His smile was the result of a surgical disfiguration. He was actually a pretty nice guy.
  • Mr. Sardonicus took liberal inspiration from the aforementioned The Man Who Laughs with the carved smile, but the character was much less of a sweet guy than Gwynplaine. It was up to the audience to decide whether he was a villain or an Anti-Villain - this being a William Castle film, they were polled, and a different ending would be screened based on whether they thought he should be treated mercifully. They killed him every time, and the mercy ending is probably lost for eternity, assuming it ever existed at all.
  • National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation has Clark Griswald become somewhat unhinged come the end of the movie as his idea of a "perfect Christmas" gradually disappears; his smile, however, stays.
  • The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Dr. Frank N Furter has one of these right before he kills Eddie with a pick axe.
  • The "Here's Johnny!" scene from The Shining. (Alternate Version.)
  • The short horror film Smile revolves around body-snatching beings with hideous grinning faces. It's well worth a watch.
  • In Tim Burton's Sweeney Todd just after the Pirelli sequence, Sweeney directs one at the Beadle. Scary doesn't even cut it. It's enough to make Jack the Ripper wet his pants. Although, like Donnie above he doesn't bare his teeth, so may overlap with Psychotic Smirk.
  • In the Tony Jaa movie Tom Yum Goong, or The Protector, one of the many opponents that Tony faces is a Capoeira fighter, who has just attacked a Buddhist temple full of innocent people, set the place ablaze, and then attacks Tony as soon as he arrives to help. What qualifies "Mr. Fake Eddie Gordo" for this trope is the fact that while he fights Tony, he laughs, taunts Tony, and openly toys with him using feints and false moves.
  • At the end of the third segment of the 1975 made-for-TV movie Trilogy of Terror the eponymous "Amelia" crouches down low in an animalistic manner, hiding in the corner with a carving knife. She stabs at the floor with the weapon, grinning ferally and revealing the horrific teeth of the Zuni doll.
  • The ever lovable late comedian John Candy had this expression on his face in Uncle Buck during the scene where he comes to the bedroom of Tia's "boyfriend" Bug to rescue Tia by drilling a hole through the doorknob, he's also holding a drill and smoking a cigar. Although generally throughout the movie Buck comes out as kind of kooky such as when he asks Tia "How would you like to spend the next several nights wondering if your crazy out of work bum uncle will shave your head while you sleep?" and where he's talking to Tia's boyfriend about burying the hatchet.
    Bug: Ever hear of a tuneup? Ah-hee-hee-hee-hee!
    Buck: Ah-hee-hee-hee-hee! Ever hear of a ritual killing? Ah-hee-hee-hee-hee!
    Bug: ...I don't get it...
    Buck: You gnaw on her face in public like that again and you'll be one. Ah-hee-hee-hee-hee!

  • Mr. Grin from the Alex Rider book Stormbreaker.
  • From Alice in Wonderland:
    "How cheerfully he seems to grin!
    How neatly spreads his claws
    And welcomes little fishes in
    with gently smiling jaws!"
  • Skeeter Traps from Chronicles Of Magic is known for sporting these, despite being a ten year-old girl. Combined with the fact that she can kill grown men three times her size, it makes her pretty scary.
  • Jame, the heroine of P.C. Hodgell's Chronicles of the Kencyrath series, smiles like this, and it is very, very bad news. It signifies the depths of her darkness, and the author said, "In a way, everything about Jame grew out of that chilling smile."
  • In Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian story "A Witch Shall Be Born", Constantius does this while watching the guard be slaughtered and crucifying Conan.
  • Coraline: Done by the Other Mother, when she's not busy being a Stepford Smiler.
  • The Cosmere:
    • The Steel Inquisitors from Mistborn are exceptionally brutal enforcers of the Empire, and the chilling grins they have when going about their work are frequently remarked on. Anti-Hero Kelsier, leader of the rebellion, also smiles a lot because it's a way of proving that he's not beaten down, but from the point of view of his enemies (to whom he has little to no mercy) it comes off like this.
    • Bleeder in Wax and Wayne displays one of these while between forms, described as having "a face of stretched muscle and grinning teeth" and being "all smiles" as she scrambles towards her terrified cabbie.
  • Vlad Dracula in Count and Countess. Every time he's about to kill someone with his artificially sharpened teeth, he grins at them first, just to give them a preview of what's to come.
  • Sometimes it's a matter of perception. In Alan Dean Foster's The Damned trilogy, the first encounter between the multiracial alien alliance's and humans highlights the differences between them and us when the human, Will Dulac, first bats the gun out of the hand of the nearest alien scout out of a self-defense reflex, then offering a handshake and smiling when he realized they weren't hostile. The sudden reflexive strike nearly broke the scout's hand, and the smile confuses and alarms them as they wonder why baring one's teeth could ever be considered a friendly gesture. They also didn't get the handshake.
  • Deptford Mice: In The Dark Portal, a rat called Smiler had a Slasher Smile on his face all the time... because he'd been rude to his superior as a child, and said superior had cut off his lips.
  • Both Carcer and Mr. Teatime of Terry Pratchett's Discworld books are described as smiling like this all the time. The drawing of Mr. Teatime in The Art of Discworld perfectly illustrates this. Marc Warren does a good job with this in the TV adaptation, too.
    • At one point in Jingo the seriously pissed off "Vimes's grin was as funny as the one that moves very fast towards drowning men. And has a fin on top."
    • Then there's Angua, who at one point must have been smiling because "her mouth was open, and all of her teeth were showing".
  • Dragaera: Perhaps inspired by the Jack Vance example, Five Hundred Years After has the court wizard as a minor character and he is similarly described as always smiling creepily and chuckling in a questionably sane manner.
  • In Jack Vance's Dying Earth series, the character Iucounu the "Laughing Magician" perpetually supports one of these providing a clue that his sense of humor is not exactly benevolent.
  • Creepy caretaker Heimertz from the Edgar & Ellen series has a constant slasher smile. During the Tv adaptation it is shown that he has had this smile since he was a child.
  • The Eschaton Series: Portia Hoechst, in Iron Sunrise, is described as having this by several other characters, both good and evil, in the novel.
  • A few Death Eaters display this, as does Snape on occasion and Voldemort in the Harry Potter series.
  • Benjamin, the serial killer antagonist of Hollow Places manages to torment one of his surviving victims while in court simply by showing her a disturbing smile.
  • The Icelandic Sagas: Older Than Print: Skarphéðinn Njálsson has one in Brennu-Njáls Saga. "And he grinned" is a common phrase in the story that implies that something really bad is about to go down.
  • The Jenkinsverse: Since most sapient species are herbivores and herd animals, they get very uncomfortable with human smiles, which involve far too many sharp teeth for their liking. Note that this is realistic; even on Earth among primates, humans are one of the only species that doesn't consider showing teeth to be a threat. Most humans who interact with aliens learn quickly to smile with closed lips. In Salvage, Adrian Saunders doesn't bother with that, which enhances his already terrifying reputation. When he finally meets more humans, it turns out that they find his smile even scarier than aliens do. At least aliens have little experience with humans and can assume that he's just normal. Humans know he's not.
  • In the Kate Daniels series, Kate is trying to enlist a man's cooperation with her plan to hunt down and kill the people who have hurt her friend.
    I gave him a smile. I was aiming for sweet, but he turned a shade paler and scooted a bit farther away from me. Note to self: work more on sweet and less on psycho-killer.
  • Nathan in Kill Time or Die Trying does this inadvertently; it's just how he naturally smiles.
  • Stephen King:
    • Randall Flagg/The Dark Man, is described as having a grin of such good cheer and jolliness which comes across however as so unsettling the human mind seems to block it out.
    • Also from The Stand (where King first writes about Flagg) is Harold. Most of the other survivors in Boulder just see him as a Stepford Smiler... but the slightly damaged child Leo sees things a little differently.
      It's like there are worms behind his eyes, and they're eating his brain and making him smile like that.
  • The huge, catlike Kzinti of Larry Niven's Known Space universe instinctively show their teeth when they feel a certain way. That way is not happy.
  • In Devon Monk's Magic in the Blood, the villain does this while making demands on Allie.
  • Gwynplaine from The Man Who Laughs, as touched upon under the examples of The Joker and Mr. Sardonicus.
  • Mr. Wonderful from Mogworld has this mixed with a Cheshire Cat Grin. It is described in the book as: "The widest grin he [Jim] had ever seen and he knew people with no skin on their faces" worth noting Mr Wonderful's grin never drops even when he's hacking his own arm off.
    • In Jam everybody goes a little crazy during the course of the book but Cult-Leader Lord Awesomo has a memorable grin when he sees Travis in the crowd and realizes he can spin the election to his favor and get Travis killed.
  • The Name of the Wind: Cinder of the Chandrian, an Evil Albino, has a smile that is described as "the expression a nightmare wore."
  • A rare heroic version: Ivarian Borenson, of The Runelords fantasy novels, is known for his chilling laughter and grin as he fights, which makes him feared even amongst warriors who have far more endowments (strength, stamina, speed, and so on taken from other people) than him. Not so much out of a love for killing, but because it works far better at frightening other people than a war cry, so he got himself into the habit of laughing instead.
  • Count Olaf in A Series of Unfortunate Events.
  • Professor Moriarty, Sherlock Holmes' arch-enemy from the short story "The Final Problem." Holmes describes that, though Moriarty "smiled and blinked", there was something about the Professor's sunken eyes that made Holmes, a man who was used to danger, very glad to have a revolver with him.
  • Jaime Lannister of A Song of Ice and Fire recalls in his youth facing a particularly brutal and psychotic fighter known as 'The Smiling Knight'. 3 guesses why he is named that. Luckily even a slasher smile is no match for Ser Arthur 'The Sword in the Morning' Dayne and his greatsword Dawn.
  • In Neil Gaiman's Stardust, Lamia displays one of these during her search for the fallen star. Fortuanately, we only have the Narrator's word on it.
    Her red, red lips curved upward in a smile of such joy, such pure and perfect happiness, that it would have frozen your blood in your veins to have seen it.
  • Star Wars Legends:
    • In some of the X-Wing Series and any other appearances written by Aaron Allston, Wedge Antilles has often been known to smile like this - actually, while it can be assumed that he's got normal smiles, almost any time the narration says he's smiling it's this trope. Humorless, feral. He gives it to politicians when he sees through what they say to what they mean and most often to enemies he's about to shoot down.
    • In the same books, "Runt" Ekwesh (being non-human) has a facial structure that even a friendly smile is described as looking like a prelude to a biting attack. He's keenly aware of this and takes full advantage of it when he wants to be menacing.
    • Legacy of the Force has Wedge shocked and taken aback by being discharged - Wedge, who was sixty and had been in service since the age of twenty - then realizing that people are going to try to kill him. The thought is so familiar that it steadies and reassures him, and he's able to flash someone a smile "suggesting that he was a rancor and they were made of meat".
  • Rictus in Clive Barker's The Thief of Always at first seems to be a harmless goofball who's always got a big, cheesy grin on his face - until the dark side of the Holiday House (his employer) makes itself known, and his smile becomes terrifying (if Harvey Swick had read his dictionary, he'd know that a "rictus" is the grin of a skull).
  • Similarly played in David Brin's Uplift War when an allied alien found it disturbing that humans bared their teeth and bark when amused.
  • Warhammer 40,000:
    • Lijah Cuu from the Gaunt's Ghosts novels has one of these. In Straight Silver'', it is explicitly noted that "the most evil servants of Chaos would have killed to have a smile that lethal."
    • In the next book, Abnett gives Magister Enok Innokenti (one of the most evil servants of Chaos ) an even better one. His smile is so hideous that it causes physical pain and nausea in humans and his daemonic bodyguard, who has murdered millions can't bear to look at it.
      • In Abnett's other series Eisenhorn, the demonhost Cherubael sometimes sports one of these. When he/it does, someone is going to die, very painfully.
  • The Hellebore family from the Tad Williams' book The War of the Flowers liked these. Anton Hellebore was described as having a smile like someone who'd learned it from a book, Lord Hellebore one with absolutely no good feelings in it, and the Terrible Child had one like someone pulling up the corners of a corpse's mouth.
  • In Warrior Cats, Mapleshade. She can make Ivypool feel like Daisy is with her, right before trying to drown her.
  • The Witcher: Geralt of Rivia is frequently said to be "smiling nastily", usually either to intimidate or show his supreme disdain for an idea or position that he's been put in.
  • The eponymous creature of Edward Gorey's The Wuggly Ump.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.:
    • Garrett has one on full display just before he gets vaporized by Coulson.
    • The android AIDA flashes a very unsettling grin after she reads The Darkhold and constructs a portal device that saves Coulson, Fitz, and Robbie from being trapped between dimensions. At first glance one could assume that she was just happy she was able to rescue her allies, but this was the first time she showed a purely emotional reaction to anything, and it came after reading the demonic book. At the end of the episode, she's shown secretly drawing up plans for a human brain, and the unsettling smile is back...
  • The Big Bang Theory's Sheldon has a particularly disturbing smile that prompts his friends to say they're there to congratulate their friend, not kill Batman. (Howard: "Oh...crap, that's terrifying").
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer
    • The Gentlemen of "Hush" wear these for the entirety of their appearance. And they never talk, despite gesturing at each other as if they were talking. The entire effect is ridiculously creepy.
    • The Gnarl, a skin-eating creature shown in "Same Time, Same Place", pulls this off chillingly. The smile is combined with a childlike personality, and it speaks in singsong, like it's telling nursery rhymes.
    • Der Kindestod in "Killed By Death" who eats up kids' life force by pinning them down, extending horrible little pipes from his eyes and sucking the energy out of their foreheads, while they screamed helplessly under him.
    • The First does this as it's impersonating Cassie.
    • Angelus, Spike, Warren, and Buffy herself. She flashes a pretty smile to a group of bullies. Given some think she is crazy, others remember she burnt down her previous school's gym, and is on record for being a multiple murder suspect, is enough to make them back off.
    • Angel gives us Dana, whom Spike goes after, thinking she's a demon, and when cornered suggests having a talk about mistreating young girls and vamps out. Dana may well like to talk about mistreating little girls given her backstory, but turns out she's a Slayer, so when Spike does this her reaction is basically, "Score."
  • The Israeli skit show The Chamber Quintet, after the Real Life Gut Punch of Prime Minister Yitzkhak Rabin’s assassination and Benjamin Netanyahu being voted prime minister for the first time, aired this skit, featuring a monologue by assassin Yig'al ‘Amir about how the political climate in Israel will take a sharp turn to the extreme, nationalistic right over the course of 20 years, intermittently giving a particularly chilling one. Made worse by the fact that the prophecies in the skit have already partially come true.
  • The killer at the end of the Criminal Minds episode "Lucky".
  • Played for Laughs near the beginning of Disney's Davy Crockett: King of the Wild Frontier of The '50s. Davy is trying to grin down a bear.
  • Doctor Who:
    • The Master often wears this expression.
      • In his last story, Ainley's Master had fangs to boot.
      • Simm's Master perfected a dishonest politician's smile in his first episodes. After that, he got even creepier.
      • Gomez's Mistress gives the most amazing Slasher Smile to Osgood, too, complete with a creepy reveal from the shadows.
    • The Fourth Doctor generally sticks to the Cheshire Cat Grin, but he does this, usually when he's pretending to be evil or bluffing about how dangerous he is – like his I Am He as You Are He gambit in "Meglos". Or occasionally when he actually is being violent, like when he snaps a man's neck in "The Seeds of Doom". (To be fair, he only bent it a bit and the sound effect is just extra snappy – the man gets up soon after.)
    • "Dalek": The Ninth Doctor does this when he meets the alleged last Dalek in the universe. Thing is, its armour is completely shut down except for its voice and eyepiece, so what does the Doctor do but give a slasher smile and attempt to "exterminate" the Dalek.
    • "The Impossible Planet"/"The Satan Pit": Toby sports a nasty one while possessed by the Beast.
    • "Journey's End": Davros does this in his moment of (near) triumph.
    • The Twelfth Doctor already has a creepy smile, but at the start of "The Lie of the Land", when he is pretending to be brainwashed by the Monks, he gives a proper slasher smile.
    • "Resolution": While controlled by the Dalek recon scout, Lin gives a few of these.
  • Scorpius of Farscape fame is infamous for these, accompanied by his black gums and needle-sharp teeth.
  • In The Flash (2014), Eobard Thawne becomes prone to these once his true identity is revealed. It's pretty unnerving, especially since as Dr Wells he was quite stoic and soft-spoken, and had an understated but friendly smile.
  • Played for laughs in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Will and Cartlon know that when Uncle Phil smiles and laughs uncontrollably, he's about to explode.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • Season 3, Episode 4: Viewers, meet Ramsay Bolton.
    • Jojen gives an awesome one to Karl, when he tells him that he's seen his future and his very imminent death.
    • Biter has a very frightening and sadistic smile.
    • The blu-ray lore shows King Aegon II Targaryen with this as he has Sunfyre eat Rhaenyra.
  • In the British TV series Jekyll the main character's Hyde persona is equipped with a frightening one. It's currently the page illustration.
  • Male Yandere Masato Kusaka from Kamen Rider Faiz does this when he's about to Murder the Hypotenuse.
  • Not uncommon on The League of Gentlemen, it being the horror filling station that it is. Most notably used by Papa Lazarou (who combines a nasty, clownish grin with yellow teeth) and Hilary Briss (whose smile really does not reach his eyes).
  • Little Lunch: At the end of "The Corridor Outside 6E", Rory asks Max and Elsa if they're sure they're not killers, to which they respond by grinning to reveal their new braces (the kids having convinced themselves that Max and Elsa were missing from school because Max had killed Elsa and been arrested, when actually they had just gone to the dentist to get braces). The kids all scream in terror.
  • Once Upon a Time's Captain Hook pulls off one of these after swearing revenge on his "crocodile." It is hot.
    • Cora gives some particularly disturbing ones while without her heart (i.e. most of her life). Even as she smiles and tells Regina she just wants the best for her beloved daughter, her eyes remain cold and lifeless.
  • Oz: Displayed among the characters like Shillinger, Adebisi, the Aryans, Timmy Kirk, Claire Howell, etc. Manipulative Bastard Chris Keller and Ryan have done this too. Even Beecher, when he was crazy in Season 2.
  • Evil!Tommy got in one or two good ones during the "Green With Evil" saga of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers.
    • Sky (or rather, the evil alien that swapped bodies with him) did a few of these during the episode "Recognition".
  • Reba: Van's "winning smile" is incredibly creepy, and he's completely oblivious to it.
    • Van calls it a "killer smile." Reba's description is a lot more accurate.
      Reba: Van, that's not a killer smile, that's the smile of a killer.
  • Dr. Cox in Scrubs is very good at making these, a number of them occurring in J.D.'s Imagine Spots.
  • Miranda Hobbes on Sex and the City does one of these when she "fakes a sonogram" (i.e., fakes wild excitement during a sonogram of a child about which she's not quite happy, yet).
  • Sherlock: delivers a rather disturbing one in "The Sign of Three".
  • The Stand: Randall Flagg.
  • In "Mirror, Mirror" from Star Trek: The Original Series, Mirror Chekhov pulls one of these right before the commercial break when he momentarily has Kirk at his mercy:
    Mirror Chekhov: "So, keptin, you die... and ve all move up in rank. No vun vill qvestion the assessination of a keptin who has disobeyed prime Starfleet orders!"
  • A particularly lame episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation has Data practicing his dance moves on the Holodeck while wearing an extremely disturbing, frozen rictus-like smile.
    • Gowron, on the other hand, mastered this trope and showed it off in almost every appearance.
  • Jessica from True Blood usually makes one of these whenever she is hungry and sees a guy she wants for dinner. However instead of being scary, it makes her look incredibly cute.
  • Twin Peaks: BOB, and by proxy Leland Palmer. His bared-teeth grin is the clearest sign that someone is possessed by BOB, as he usually only wears it right before he's about to horribly murder someone.
  • An episode of Xena: Warrior Princess flashes back to the point in her past where Xena went from ruthless but otherwise sane and rational warlord to utterly psychotic rampager; she has one of these grins on her face when she snaps a Roman soldier's neck, but it's her eyes that are the most disturbing.

  • Michael Jackson turns to the camera with cat eyes and a creepy smile at the end of his Thriller music video.
  • One of the detective's other selves in the music video for Blind Guardian's "Another Stranger Me." The band's singer also has a Slasher Smile at one point.
  • "The Guy," the mascot of the metal band Disturbed, is always depicted with this (always.)
  • Danny Elfman practically made a living doing this in the 70's and 80's. There's hardly any Oingo Boingo music video (or film, for that matter) in which he doesn't spend a few seconds scaring the living crap out of the audience. Overly obnoxious talk show hosts occasionally got the silent treatment from him, combined with a trademark psychotic grin.
  • And then there's... well, everyone but the band in the video for Soundgarden's "Black Hole Sun".
  • Pustulus Maximus pulls one of these in the music video for GWAR's "I'll Be Your Monster".
  • In The Birthday Massacre's song Happy Birthday ( 3 guesses as to what it's about), there's the lines:
    • I think my friend said, "Don't forget the video." / I think my friend said, "Don't forget to smile."
  • Motörhead has a song about this trope called "Smiling Like a Killer."
    "Go to bed, lock the door,
    don't look in the mirror,
    what if I was right behind you,
  • The more disturbing of the Vocaloid music videos feature this, such as the chainsaw-happy "nurse" and the demented victims in the "Dark Woods Circus" series (you can even see a disembodied Slasher Smile behind the flap of the circus tent), and Miku in "Circle you" right before she cleaves you in half with a machete , at the moment when you least expect it. it will most likely catch you off guard.
  • The cover of Aphex Twin's Richard D. James Album.
  • Technical thrash metal band Coroner have a song entitled "Grin (Nails Hurt)" off the aptly titled "Grin" album, which itself features a pretty sadistic grin.
    Nails in my brain, all that's left just
    Grin 'til I lose
    Until I lose myself
  • The video for David Bowie's "Valentine's Day" consists of just about nothing but David playing guitar while making a Slasher Smile at the camera.
  • Annie Lennox has an unexpected one at the very end of the music video for Little Bird
  • La Camilla from Army of Lovers displays a rather frightening one in the video for "Obsession" as she's rolling her fellow band mate down the hall in a wheelchair. And later, while cutting his head open.
  • Then-prime minister Tony Blair is depicted with such a smile in a hidden booklet included with early pressings of Radiohead's Kid A. It's every bit as unsettling as it sounds.
  • The album art for Poets of the Fall's Twilight Theater gives us Hamartia, the Monster Clown jester who finds perverse humour and joy in others' disastrous errors. No wonder he's smiling.
  • The music video for The Lonely Island's "Threw It on the Ground" features Elijah Wood giving a hilariously creepy grin as he and Ryan Reynolds pin the narrator down and fire a tazer into his anus repeatedly. The guy definitely earned it, but it's still a strange experience to see this kind of expression on Frodo Baggins.
  • Brent Smith of Shinedown unleashes a blink-and-you-miss slasher smile in the band's video for "Devil." It's surprisingly creepy.
  • The sharks' smiles in Baby Shark become slasher smiles when they go hunting and we see them behind the children.



    Professional Wrestling 
  • Randy Orton doesn't smile often, but when he does....
  • Batista could be like this as well, both as a face and as a heel.
  • Kane too. Bonus points for not needing to smile to look scary.
  • Beth Phoenix is the rare Diva who is able to smile evilly without making it look the least bit sexy.
  • Chris Benoit. Throughout most of his career he tried to keep his missing tooth hidden behind his lips, but WWE bookers decided to have him accentuate it with a slasher smile.
  • Madison Rayne, even when giving a genuinely friendly smile looks really unnerving.
  • So far in NXT, a slasher smile seems to be Asuka's trademark. During her NXT contract signing she was interrupted and teased by Emma and Dana Brooke, and just before she walked backstage she turned around and smiled so creepily it scared them both into silence. She followed up by getting a bit of an ass kicking from Billie Kay in her debut match - then after Billie mocked her, she smiled, and proceeded to hurt her.

    Tabletop Games 



    Video Games 
  • Schwartz, the protagonist of the second generation in Agarest Senki 2 sports this when he is about to kick someone's ass all over the place.
  • Subverted in American McGee's Alice: The Cheshire Cat had this expression (it's significantly scarier than the Cheshire Cat Grin his other incarnations wore), but he was one of the few allies the player has in the game, and he never attacks Alice. Still, when he appeared and disappeared grin-first, followed by his crazy eyes, it was prime horror. It was never quite clear whether he was as mad as a box of frogs, or frighteningly sane. Considering the game takes the idea about Wonderland as a construct of Alice's mind to it's conclusion by making Alice batshit insane herself either possibility ends in horror.
    • Alice herself demonstrates one near the end of the game's trailer.
  • Bendy and the Ink Machine: Although the cartoon version of Bendy has a Cheshire Cat Grin that pushes his cheeks up into his eyes, the murderous 3D "Bendy" on the loose in the studio has this trope and ink completely covering his eyes.
  • In Billy Hatcher and the Giant Egg, any crow enemy will always have a massive one on its mug.
    • Likewise, this extends to all the bosses too, save for Dark Raven and maybe Dark Corvo.
  • In BlazBlue, Jin gets to sport one of these whenever he's around Ragna.
    • In the sequel we have Hazama/Terumi who's smile is perfectly fitting for his batshit insane personality. Especially on the Japanese audio track.
  • Oblio of Dance Central when dancing "Body Movin" gives a smile that's just scary.
  • The Yume Nikki fangame .flow has some of these, as shown in this walk-around video (video link) — for example, there are quite a few shark-toothed, bloody-grinning white blob things (whose faces are otherwise featureless) in the area first entered at 1:20, and the painting at 15:14 is of a surreal abstract line-art slasher smile.
    • There are also at least two places in .flow where the walls are made of those slasher-smiling white things, their mouths open even wider, and in one place it looks like their skins are strung up with the smiles still in the middle... even worse, the entrances to these places are the mouths of the white creatures. There's a video of these areas, too (video link) — one of the areas is entered first at 1:11, and more of it and the second area are shown starting at 7:40.
    • When the re-occurring character known as 'Smile' is struck with the steel pipe, he gets one of these. After the event occurs, Smile will grin every time you pull out the pipe in front of him... (for the morbidly curious, here's the recorded event: video link
  • In Dragon Age, both hurlocks and genlocks sport permanent Slasher Smiles and it's arguable that Shrieks also have one.
  • Two characters in Drakengard display this: Caim, the dark and vicious Anti-Hero, and Arioch, the Ax-Crazy Action Girl.
  • Found on one of the last fictional characters you'd expect in Epic Mickey. Should you decide to take the troublemaker path with Mickey himself, he'll begin to crouch low and sport one of these grins, looking all the more like a rat than a mouse in the process.
  • The Super Mutants in Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas have a permanent grinning expression.
  • Kefka, from Final Fantasy VI, has a sprite with No Mouth most of the time. However, in later incarnations he's indeed sporting one.
    • If one looks closely at his final form, you'll notice that he does in fact sport this smile. Either that, or a Psychotic Smirk.
    • Dissidia tells us that he definitely is. Complete with Heath Ledger-style Joker makeup.
    • Sephrioth comes very close several times during Final Fantasy VII but manages to hold it back to smirk, except in Advent Children he can't hold it back during his Resurrection and shows some teeth. In OVA Last Order he smiles mouth open wide to let out a Evil Laugh while wrecking Zack fair in mid air.
    • Cid Highwind frequently and Barret as well.
    • Barthandelus, Big Bad of Final Fantasy XIII, sports one of these at all times in his true form as a fal'Cie. In his first battle, he even has an attack called "Thanatosian Smile", which later gets upgraded to "Thanatosian Laughter".
  • Karel of Fire Emblem is an Anti-Hero with this. He's also something of an Ax-Crazy guy, considering he both constantly talks about loving to kill and he also murdered his whole family so he could get a sword. By the way, he looks like this [3].
  • The Replica assassins (image link) from F.E.A.R.
    • Paxton Fettel has one of these plastered on his face almost constantly.
  • In Five Nights at Freddy's 2, the Purple Man is almost always seen with a smile when he's doing his...activities. "Almost" being when he's freaking out when confronted by the spirits of the children he's killed.
  • The Big Bad of Ghost Trick, Yomiel, wears one of these when he is first encountered. It's made especially unnerving by the fact that he looks identical to the main character Sissel.
  • When Haseo awakens his Skeith Avatar in .Hack//G.U. volume one he's revealed to be wearing one after he summons Skeith's scythe and prepares to use it to slaughter Bordeaux and her lackeys.
  • Haunting Ground: Daniella (The Maid) spends a lot of her screen-time doing this, or laughing rather... interestingly. See for yourself.
  • A heroic (and utterly strange) example is Daxter. The reason it's strange is that he's a goofy wisecracking sidekick with a bit of badass thrown in. Only shown off in-game by his Superpowered Evil Side. Every other time, it's part of an HD image promoting Jak X.
  • The Heaven Smile creatures from killer7 have these all the time. This, combined with their freaky laughter, makes them horrifying for many players.
    • All that concept art where Dan Smith does it.
  • Vanitas, once you finally see him without the helmet in Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep, is rather good at these. (WARNING: both images are major spoilers.)
  • Magaki in The King of Fighters XI has a terrible smile frozen on his face the entire time you fight him.
  • The fairy queen in the fake ending cutscene of Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards, revealing that Zero-Two is still possessing her.
  • The Legend of Zelda
    "So why don't you go polish up that train of yours? Not that it matters much...(grin) "The thing will be useless before long..."
  • Ax-Crazy pre-Heel–Face Turn Maverick Zero, as seen before the climax of Mega Man X4. And fitting, since he's built for the sole purpose of destroying the world.
  • Hot Coldman, in Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, constantly smiles rather psychotically during his appearances. In fact, outside of being the man who set The Boss up or The baldie, probably the most recognizable characteristic of his is the smile.
    • Vamp does this a lot too.
    • The fake Colonel from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, during his conversation with Raiden nearing the end of the game, occasionally gives off a Glasgow-esque grin (akin to Heath Ledger's Joker character or Dissidia's redesign of Kefka Palazzo.). Justified, as during these occasions, the Colonel's face often takes a form resembling a skull.
    • Jetstream Sam's introduction scene in Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance comes with one of these. It just looks wrong on several levels, Uncanny Valley inclusive, but this is probably intentional to add an additional sense of unease to him.
    • Raiden also sports several in the same game, after reawakening his Jack the Ripper persona.
    • In Metal Gear Solid 3, Colonel Volgin flashes quite a lot of these, usually before cheerfully committing acts of depraved cruelty and evil. His most memorable slasher smiles occur when he nukes his own country just for the hell of it, when he sees that Snake has lost bladder control because of how intensely he's being tortured, while saying "Yes! Yes! ''That's'' what I want to see!" His other most memorable one is when he controls the Shagohod, and, while laughing maniacally, mows down his own men, again, seemingly just because he can. A lot of these traits are why Volgin is one of the few villans in the Metal Gear franchise to have next to no fans who sympathize with him, because he has no Freudian Excuse, no underlying issues, other than an extreme and insatiable sadism.
  • Baraka from Mortal Kombat perpetually has a deranged, fanged one that distorts his entire face. This, along with his glowing cat-eyes, can be a bit distracting to some players.
  • Jackle in NiGHTS into Dreams... is constantly wearing one plastered over his otherwise invisible face. You kind of get the picture that he's absolutely insane, because just adding that evil cackle... *shudder*
  • Matt Engarde shows a particularly disturbing one when you make him show his true colors in the second Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney game.
    • In Investigations Shih-na gets a bit of one when unmasked as one of the villains before eventually going on to a full-blown Higurashi: When They Cry-style Evil Laugh.
      • As does Manfred von Karma, although it's only slightly creepy unless you know that he murdered Edgeworth's father. AAI doesn't specifically spell it out, most likely to avoid spoiling those who haven't played the original game, but to those in the know it's creepy.
  • Darmanitan from Pokémon Black and White. Just think about what is going through its mind.
  • Brad Kilstein in Psychic Force tends to sport this, especially when his 'sadistic killer side' emerges. Which is... most of the time.
  • In Ratchet & Clank: Up Your Arsenal, Courtney Gears gives out one of these right before her boss battle. Just before, she had captured Clank and replaced him with a duplicate to spy on the Q-Force. She also abducts Skidd McMarxx, and turns him into a robot; when Ratchet finds out, she captures him and spills out that she intends to do the same to him in sadist glee.
  • Shin Megami Tensei:
    • The cover for Shin Megami Tensei IV has Walter sporting one of these, and Issachar also suddenly sports one of these when he begins to turn into a demon.
    • In Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse, Flynn, the saviour of Tokyo and Mikado, sports a very wrong-looking one of these while fighting Merkabah and Lucifer in Camp Ichigaya. It's a warning sign that it's actually Shesha disguised as him.
    • The protagonists of Persona 3, Persona 4, and Persona 5 all get one the first time they summon their Persona. The film adaptation of Persona 3 makes it even more prominent... and the gruesome summoning method of shooting himself in the head makes it particularly striking in both the game and movie.
    • In Persona 3, the final boss sports a mask which is nothing but a pair of hollows for eyes and an immense grinning mouth; this is in contrast to other Major Arcana Shadows, whose masks are either inhuman or emotionless.
    • In Persona 4, the real Killer, Adachi, sports these after being found out.
    • While the normal in-battle appearances of the P3 and P4 cast are retained in Persona 4: Arena Ultimate, each character has a Shadow version that invariably sports this or a Psychotic Smirk in their splash artwork.
    • Persona 5: Several of your party members will pop creepy Face Framed in Shadow smiles right before their Persona unleashes a damaging Critical Hit on an enemy. Yusuke in particular has an absolutely vicious one when he first summons his Persona.
  • The smiling green snake in, especially when it's circling you or devouring your remains.
  • Rajan shows one in Sly 2: Band of Thieves before the title card for "The Predator Awaits" episode, (and for the picture for the chapter) Dimitri shows one to a lesser extent at the end of his intro scene, along with crazy ass eyes.
    • Penelope Mouse in Sly Cooper: Thieves in Time also sports this at the climax of Chapter 4 when she steals Sir Galeth's cane. This solidfies her Face–Heel Turn, and causes her former friends to attack her in hatred.
  • Red Savarin of Solatorobo gets an absolutely crazy one when The Order is given. His usual upbeat, happy-yet-stubborn demeanor means it's even creepier.
  • The little ghosts that appear mostly in Pumpkin Hill, and dotted around other stages in Sonic Adventure 2 each have a rather creepy, fanged, smile.
  • Normally, Akuma in Street Fighter is a Perpetual Frowner. On the occasions he becomes Shin Akuma, however, his face twists into a horrific grin.
    • M.Bison (Vega in Japan) almost always sports a slasher smile that is wide enough to show all of his teeth and even the gums. In his case, this expression overlaps with Perpetual Smiler.
    • The not so well known variant of Ken, known as Violent Ken, has one permanently plastered on his face. His altered nonchalant sounding voice and relaxed fighting stance makes him even creepier. His best attack involves screaming like a psychopath and panting heavily at the end just to seal the deal.
    • Vega (Balrog in Japan) nothing brakes that Bishōnen face better like that smile he cracks his V-trigger, no matter how beautiful and delicate he claims to be Vega is easily one of the most insane Street Fighters.
  • In the opening of Suikoden II, Luca Blight has one of the most frighteningly evil Slasher Smiles imaginable, bordering on horror (a look that he keeps consistent throughout the game) and isn't just holding an axe or a knife, he's holding a decapitated head.
  • Dimentio in Super Paper Mario is heavily implied to have a constant smile especially when committing very atrocious acts such as murder.
  • Barbatos Goetia displays a very unsettling one for his "No Items Ever!" mystic arte in the PS2 remake of Tales of Destiny.
  • Emil of Tales of Symphonia gets one of these during his Devil's Hellfire Mystic Arte. Made all the more disturbing since Emil (outside of Ratatosk mode) is normally a milquetoast to rival Charlie Brown himself.
    • Alice from the same game appears to have this as well. The way she occasionally switches from her typical smiley expressions to her evil-/scary-looking one in a single instant is so creepy it makes her bear an uncanny resemblance to a certain aforementioned mask salesman...
  • Alexei from Tales of Vesperia displays one in his cut-in just before the climax of his Brilliant Cataclysm mystic arte.
  • The Horseless Headless Horsemann from Team Fortress 2 has one of these carved into his jack o' lantern head, as well as on his huge ax.
  • Sweet Tooth of Twisted Metal, and in fact most monster clowns.
    • Calypso from the same series might apply if you count most of the endings for Twisted Metal 2.
  • In Undertale, Flowey the Flower's normal smile turns into an enormous toothy grin that takes up almost his entire face when he reveals his true colors. It's especially unnerving when he becomes Omega Flowey in the final battle of the Neutral ending.
    • Papyrus and Sans, it's natural for them.
  • Two bosses in Wario Land 4, Cractus and Spoiled Rotten, twist their faces into grotesque, rabid grins after they've been hit several times. The freakiness is magnified by the fact that their heads alone take up more of the screen than Wario does.
  • Goblins wear these in the Warcraft series. The Goblin Shredder pilot has a particularly mad grin.
  • The citizens of Wellington Wells We Happy Few smile almost constantly, even when they're trying to beat you to death for being a Downer. The most extreme example is probably the Doctors, who will come after you if you fake taking Joy and have big, unnerving rictus smiles on their faces at all times.
  • Certain levels in WET has a random mook charging Rubi, who promptly shoots them. Blood sprays onto her face, which triggers Rage Mode and she wears a psychotically evil slasher smile throughout the level.
  • A picture of B.J. doing this represents the difficulty rating "I am Death Incarnate" on Wolfenstein 3D, which was carried on to the Uber difficulty in Wolfenstein: The New Order.
    • Wilhelm Strasse gives one to B.J. He says he's a "happy man", except that's not a happy smile. That's a Slasher Smile...
  • The Chrysalids (UFO Wiki link) from X-COM: UFO Defense.
    • Similarly, their masters, the Snakemen, have a wicked toothy smile. But then again, they don't have any visible lips.

    Visual Novels 
  • The dragon in Dra Koi has a slasher smile for her default smile. The protagonist kind of hates it, even in the good ending.
  • Kotonoha, in the one of the bad endings of School Days. The one where she kills Sekai, more specifically
    • Sekai also gets one in another of the bad endings when she kills Kotonoha.
  • Gilgamesh of Fate/stay night shows off a particularly disturbing one of these after making the Holy Grail manifest in the U.B.W. story route. For a 'yippee, destruction and fire!' variant, watch the activation of his best Noble Phantasm, or get an eyeful of this image.
  • In Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors, Clover has one in the Axe Ending.
  • Corpse Party has several. There's possessed Ayumi, Kizami, Sachiko, and the shadowy creature at the end of Chapter One (if it catches you)... who turns out to be Sachiko's mother.
  • Higurashi: When They Cry: Everyone has them by the dozens. The real culprit, though, has a perpetually blank appearance, which is even creepier in contrast.
  • Umineko: When They Cry:
  • Quite a few characters from Dies Irae are prone of pull these kinds of smiles. Wilhelm, Rusalka and Schreiber are among those that pull these the most.

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 


    Real Life 
  • Actor Jack Black can be seen with these in a wide number of photos.
  • The "literally smiling from ear to ear" disfigurement smile as evidenced by characters such as Kakihara in Ichi the Killer, Gwynplaine (of the aforementioned The Man Who Laughs), and The Dark Knight's Joker is commonly referred to as a "Glasgow smile" and is not a terribly uncommon humiliation injury by gangs. The actor Tommy Flanagannote  sports one of these courtesy of being jumped outside a pub in his younger days.
    • In Japan, legends abound of the kuchisake-onna (口裂け女), a female onryou with a surgical mask to conceal it and who is hellbent on returning the favor to every male she accosts around sundown
  • Jack Nicholson.
    • "Heeeeeeere's Johnny!" (that tends to happen when you play those roles).
    • With new Joker brand I get a grin again and again and again.
  • Lon Chaney was a master of this both in and out of makeup.
  • Michael Fassbender. There's a reason everyone on the Internet thinks he's a shark.
    • Smiling too widely is a good way to unsettle a fencing opponent.
  • Pittsburgh Steeler receiver Hines Ward is known for two things. The first is blocks so vicious and they made a new rule to try to keep him from hurting people. The second is almost always smiling. No matter how hard he gets hit, or how hard he hits someone, he gets up smiling like a lunatic.
  • Cult leader and sexual deviant David Berg's slasher smile never seemed to leave his face. Makes you shudder and want to punch him at the same time.
  • Marlon Brando, as seen here. (He looks like he might have been told by the makeup artist to grin so that the artist knows which facial wrinkles to highlight. Still looks freaky.)
  • Joe Biden smiles a lot: a nice smile, on the whole. But in this smile, as he explains why we have the Geneva Convention,note  there's nothing but pure distilled rage. And Nightmare Fuel.
    To protect my son in the military. That's why we sign these treaties.
  • Shirley Phelps tends to wear this expression during interviews.
  • Actor John Astin often sports one of these in his various roles.
  • Andrew Kehoe was reportedly seen wearing one of these while heading toward Bath School, half of which he had blown up with dynamite minutes earlier, killing 38 people (mostly kids). Shortly thereafter, he blew up his car, killing himself and four others.
  • UFC Heavyweight Champion Fabricio Werdum often makes a goofy face at the camera that has become memetic. It involves a large, bizarre, Joker-like smile that makes him look insane. He's even worn shirts with himself making the smile.
  • David Bowie could produce one when he was in the right mood.
  • Satoshi Uematsu, suspected of stabbing 19 severely disabled people to death in a Japanese care home, has one of these in virtually every photo of him, both before and after the rampage.
  • Alligators and crocodiles often appear to have a permanent one, though in reality this is just how their mouths are shaped. Gators, however, look less threatening since they have an overbite, in contrast to crocs which have both their upper and lower teeth interlock with each other forming a toothy grin.
  • Averted with wolves, which is one of the reasons our two species get along fairly well. Granted, the phrase "wolf grin" exists for a reason, their smiles don't always look happy, but anything resembling a smile from a wolf can at least be read as non aggression.
  • Played straight and inverted with chimpanzees. Any facial gesture from a chimp that shows teeth is at best a warning a sign, whether it's a smile or otherwise, even if it is a happy looking smile.
  • Due to Aspergers syndrome being linked to difficulty reading social and facial cues, many people on the spectrum often have to practice grinning to avoid it looking like a slasher smile.
  • George Eastman (no not that one) is a master at the slasher smile from his numerous villain and exploitation film roles throughout his career.

Alternative Title(s): Evil Grin