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Something about a Rose

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"Do you see my red rose? It marks your imminent death!" note 

And I envy the rose
That you held in your teeth, love
With the thorns underneath, love
Sticking into your gums
— "The Masochism Tango", An Evening Wasted with Tom Lehrer

What accessory could you possibly add to up your sex appeal 20 notches, show your sensitive side, and look really cool? A rose, of course! It's a flower, so it's beautiful and romantic like you, but it has thorns, and you're no wuss. Hold it between your teeth, if you want to up your sex appeal a few more notches. Perfect! And in some cases, it can be weaponized into a whip, a dart, and/or petal storm!

Generally, this is used to indicate a character is a Pretty Boy, a girly and badass man or a Casanova. Princely types like an actual Prince Charming or a Princely Young Man are also often given rose motifs. That said, there are a few female examples out there, like The Vamp, the Girly Bruiser, and the Bifauxnen, which intentionally invokes Bishōnen imagery.

Sometimes, the color, number, and position of the roses can be used for Foreshadowing. This usually happens in reference to the Victorian custom of "the language of flowers," in which different flowers were given different meanings, allowing a bouquet to transmit a sort of informal coded message.

Speaking of Victorian, the common depictions of roses we see today are a relatively recent phenomenon. Commonly used depictions use a type of cultivar known as the hybrid tea, which was first bred in the late Victorian era. Earlier depictions such as in medieval illuminated manuscripts and in the emblems of the Houses of Lancaster and York used non-spiral, five-petaled roses; some of which then are often colored pink (which is the oldest and most common color that's cultivated) or in cooler hues of red, by which other languages such as German, Russian and all major Romance languages use "rose" as a stand-in for pink.

In Japan, gay and bisexual men are referred to as barazoku ("rose tribe"), so roses in Japanese media can also mean an entirely different kind of coded message.

Related to Flowers of Femininity. Compare and Contrast The Tragic Rose.

Male Examples

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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Black Butler, Sebastian has a rose motif from time to time, usually with a black rose to symbolise his demonic side. This is most notable in the second and third anime openings, but also in the second anime series when he and Claude make their pact.
  • Creed from Black Cat often carries a rose, and this is taken to ridiculous extremes in the anime version, where his bath is full of roses. Also, he encloses a rose in the letter he sends to the hero. The hero is Not Amused.
  • Bleach: Beauty-obsessed Charlotte's release is called "Reina des Roses" ("Queen of the Roses"). His ultimate attack is a black thorn bush inside which a single white rose blooms, killing the opponent trapped inside. The attack is designed to symbolise his aesthetic of beauty equalling strength.
  • Muraki Kazutaka in Descendants of Darkness has a thing for roses, at one point stating the symbolism of the roses he attempts to give to the main character as "eternal love", which just reinforces the point made throughout the manga that he's not someone one should mess around with.
  • Fairy Tail: Mard Geer uses these in his Thorn Curse. However, his take on the trope, as the name might imply, focuses more on the sharp part of the flower: He makes use of black thorny vines to torture his own subordinates and impale his opponents, one of the victims of which was a Physical God. He even refers to his guild's base Cube as his "garden". Did we mention he's also a Bishōnen ...most of the time?
  • Guiche from The Familiar of Zero uses one instead of a wand, to complement his casanova appearance.
  • In one episode of Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu, an elderly man thinks that Tsubaki and Sousuke are going to rape him. In his creepy envisioning of what he thinks is about to happen, roses are used as censors. Ick.
  • Karl Lichter von Randoll of Future GPX Cyber Formula has a tendency to throw roses, especially in one episode of the TV series, where he throws a white one at Asuka. His racing suit even has a red rose logo on the back.
  • The handsome Magnificent Bastard Andrea Cavalcanti in Gankutsuou gives a bouquet of roses to Eugenie when he first meets her and continues to give them to her later on.
  • Leonardo Medici Bundle in GoShogun almost always carries a rose in the series and uses the rose as a metaphor in the movie sequel.
  • France, from Hetalia: Axis Powers. In the anime, as soon as he is introduced roses start to pop out from behind him.
  • Hideaki Asaba from His and Her Circumstances, who considers himself God's gift to women.
  • In Jewelpet Kira☆Deco!, Coal holds and throws a black rose during his spell-casting animation.
  • Theo from Kaleido Star uses lots of roses in his stage act, which he throws at the audience and then slices with his whip.
  • Yoshimori of Kekkaishi has the ability to create facsimiles of himself, which he usually uses to take care of boring duties while he has a nap. For special occasions, he makes an ultra-hunky version of himself with Fabio hair and a rose in the teeth.
  • Daisuke Ono during his brief stint as Minoru Shiraishi's replacement on Lucky Star.
  • Gackto from Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch usually has a rose, a glass of wine, or both in hand.
  • George de Sand from Mobile Fighter G Gundam. The rose symbolism also carries over to his Humongous Mecha, called the Rose Gundam, which fires rose-shaped laser cannons. And he once used roses as shuriken while fighting on foot.
  • Treize Khushrenada of Mobile Suit Gundam Wing has his tub filled with rose petals, decorates his office with roses, smells roses during his monologues...
  • Both of the above owe something to flamboyant Neo Zeon Ace Pilot Mashymre Cello from Mobile Suit Gundam ZZ.
  • Mon Colle Knights: Count Collection tends to carry roses, which he personally grows in his castle garden. At one point he also holds one between his teeth in a typical evil charming pose, or at least to the best of his efforts, since he and the rose just got charred.
  • Cavendish in One Piece often introduces himself with a rose in his mouth, fitting for his Bishōnen look. Sometimes, he proceeds to eat the rose.
  • Flat the mouse, in Onegai My Melody, when he dispenses "sic-her-boy!" advices to Kakeru. He also mysteriously grows a mustache.
  • Tamaki in Ouran High School Host Club often carries a rose around, though he's mostly a parody of this character type. Ouran relies heavily on this trope. In fact, all the characters have a symbolic rose colour attached to them. Tamaki's is white, Haruhi's is red, Kaoru orange, Hikaru blue, Honey pink, Kyoya's purple and Mori dark blue.
  • George from Paradise Kiss gives Yukari one when he first meets her. He must be particularly fond of them since the Pimped-Out Dress he has Yukari model for the high school fashion show has a good number of them on it.
  • Pokémon: The Series:
    • James/Kojiro, who seems to have no use for it other than emphasizing his good looks, and sometimes would display it during the Team Rocket motto, though otherwise not much else. It was present at the very beginning of the series and started to pop up more frequently towards the latter half of the Diamond and Pearl arc, and was brought back for real in a relatively recent episode. Turns out it's not a real rose, but a key capable of opening any door. That sure would have come in handy before...
    • Drew/Shū also does this, going as far as using a rose-themed Pokémon for crying out loud... He's also always giving roses to his "rival" May/Haruka.
  • Parodied with Femio in Princess Tutu. He even has a servant to scatter rose petals in his wake.
  • Tatewaki Kuno from Ranma ½ often proffers roses (usually a single one, held in his mouth) to Akane during his rare, serious moments.
  • Marquis Alexis Doucet from Record of Grancrest War has a flower motif. He wears two blue roses on his cloak. But he takes it further when he spends a night arranging stones in a garden to form a giant rose that could be seen from Marrine's window. He then does this again by arranging his army into the same rose shape in a later episode. You can see his first one here.
  • Revolutionary Girl Utena has such pervasive rose imagery that every major character's theme flower is a rose, and they are differentiated from one another by the color of their roses. The male character that fits the trope best is Touga, a Casanova-type who is associated with red roses. He is one of very few people who manage to defeat the heroine in a duel.
  • Kenshin of Rurouni Kenshin subverts this in an artbook piece, which has the usual setup for him having a rose in his mouth, but it's actually a maple branch with a leaf. It makes sense in character, plus it's symbolic. He's from Canada you know.
  • In Sailor Moon, Tuxedo Mask uses roses as projectile weapons.
  • Pisces Aphrodite from Saint Seiya. Aphrodite's main power remains on his ability to manipulate his Cosmo energy in order to create different kinds of roses that he can freely brandish. If you thought this one belonged under the female examples, no one will blame you.
  • Zero, The Winged Knight from SD Gundam Force loves them. They're called the "Princess Rose" of Lacora. This quote says it all really.
    Baku: There he goes again, making flowers appear out of thin air!
  • Kenshin from Sengoku Basara is often surrounded by dozens of rose petals, though it's probably just from Kasuga's point of view. Used to great effect in the anime during his fight with Nohime.
  • In Undertaker Riddle, Riddle is seen with a bouquet of roses a lot. Doubles as a using of The Tragic Rose since he garnishes mourning ceremonies with them as well.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!: Filler Villain Siegfried Schröder has a indigo-colored rose, showing off how fabulous he is, fitting his Agent Peacock image.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's: Aki Izayoi uses a Rose deck, which primarily uses rose-themed monsters (although not exclusively, as long as they're plant-themed), which her ace monster being Black Rose Dragon, a black dragon with red rose petals as body parts that can summon thorn whips and destroys the entire field with a storm of rose petals upon summoning. Years later, Konami has printed more Rose cards and Rose Dragon cards to support Aki's archetype.
  • Kurama in YuYu Hakusho (pictured above; written by Yoshihiro Togashi), who had the ability to control plants and use them as weapons. His weapon is a whip created from a single rose. The fact that he was better looking than many of the women in the show also helped up his sex appeal.

    Comic Books 
  • Spider-Man: Several would-be crime bosses have taken the identity of the Rose, a masked underworld figure who is so named both because he wears a rose in his lapel and because he keeps a garden of roses and other flowering plants in his penthouse greenhouse. The most well-known Rose is Richard Fisk, the son of the Kingpin, who assumes the identity in a (failed) attempt to usurp the latter's power.
  • V for Vendetta: V grows roses in his underground lair, plucking one for each of his victims. Valerie, in her letter, recalls how she loves roses. V also manipulates Rose Almond into killing dictator Adam Susan.

    Films — Animated 
  • In Shrek 2, Prince Charming not only holds the rose with his teeth but twirling it with his tongue, in the middle of a semi-wild dance with Fiona.

    Films — Live Action 
  • Gomez from the first The Addams Family movie. He's the kind of person who'd enjoy a pierced lip the bad way.
  • In The Adventures of Baron Munchausen, the title character has a habit of handing roses to every woman he meets.
  • Azumi features a long-haired, white-clad, psychotic biseinen who first appears holding a red rose, for no other apparent reason than to look cool.

  • Age of Steam: In Cold Copper, Captain Hink had given Rose a wallpaper rose, folded paper and perfumed. She had kissed him — more than once — because of it.
  • In The Chronicles of Amber, the first protagonist, Corwin, has as his emblem a silver rose. A brief mention is made of the fact that his cloak-clasp is a silver rose, but it's not mentioned again until the second protagonist, his son Merlin, finds a real, fresh-cut silver rose on Corwin's bedside table (even though Corwin was missing, presumed dead at the timenote ). Nothing is made of it because the series ends abruptly when the author Died During Production. In the portrait introducing Benedict, he "leaned upon a lance about which was entwined a rope of flowers".
  • Gaunt's Ghosts: In Necropolis, when the noble houses of Vervunhive place Ibram Gaunt in charge of the defense of their city, they give him a symbolic rose from House Chass's gardens. House Chass practices the art of cybernetic gardening, though, each plant a carefully designed metallic object, so this is a steel rose. It saves his life when he's shot with a bolt gun point-blank (because it exploded next to him rather than inside him in what might, or might not, have been Divine Intervention.
  • The Hunger Games: President Snow is anything but a Pretty Boy, but he has a greenhouse filled with roses, leaves behind roses as a warning to his enemies, and has done something to himself so that he permanently smells of roses—as well as of blood. The blood smell's actually natural: he tried to poison both himself and a rival, and since he didn't take the antidote quickly enough, he's got permanent mouth ulcers. The rose smell is intended to cover it up.
  • Quiller: The eponymous protagonist has arranged for whatever money he has left to be spent on roses for his girlfriend Moira. In one novel, however, he's being taken out to be shot and has time to ponder just how annoying it would be to receive a roomful of roses from a dead lover. He escapes his predicament and has the will changed to a single sublime rose.
  • Rose of Rapture: A major motif of the book, culminating in Isabella being given dozens of roses by admiring courtiers. She sends all the roses away, except for the one given to her by her husband.
  • Sapphire: Boris's 'Blood Rose' attack. Which involves killing the victim by teleporting it into his/her heart.
  • In A Song of Ice and Fire, Loras Tyrell's house sigil is a rose. He hands out roses to his fangirls every tourney.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Game of Thrones:
    • The rose which Ser Loras Tyrell carries in "The Wolf and the Lion" hints that he is an Agent Peacock — beautiful, but dangerous. Considering that the Mountain had killed an opponent in the previous episode, viewers who haven't read the books might assume that the rather delicate-looking Knight of Flowers is destined to become Ser Gregor Clegane's next victim. With a little Combat Pragmatism, however, Loras takes down the fearsome brute on his first jousting attempt.
    • Mercenary Daario Naharis does this to show Queen Daenerys that he's not just another thug who's good with a sword.
      Daario: [flourishes flower] A Dusk Rose.
      Daenerys: ...Would you like to walk at the back of the train instead of riding?
      Daario: And this one's called Lady's Lace.
      Daenerys: Would you like to walk without shoes?
  • Soukichi Banba (Big One) from J.A.K.Q. Dengekitai had the rose as his symbol. He could use them as throwing weapons, and always sniffed one before transforming.
  • Kamen Rider Caucasus, the Big Bad Dark Rider from Kamen Rider Kabuto: God Speed Love, has his signature Black Rose, which somehow makes him look extremely menacing and refined at the same time. He also frequently uses them as a silent Pre Ass Kicking One Liner, holding one up before pummeling his opponent into oblivion.
  • Humorously used when Stephen Colbert had to get his photo taken for an Army ID when he trains to prepare for going to Iraq. He isn't allowed to smile, so on the second try, he whips out a rose.
  • Murder, She Wrote: In "Danse Diabolique", the dancer playing Death presents a rose and a skull to the ballerina who then dies on stage. Jessica initially suspects that the ballerina was killed by a poisoned thorn on the rose.
  • Invoked on the season 9 finale of RuPaul's Drag Race when Sasha Velour came on-stage carrying a rose to lip-sync to "So Emotional". She tore it to shreds during the song's spoken-word intro then at key moments within the song released small showers of rose petals by removing each of her gloves, culminating in a climactic cascade of petals from under her wig.
  • Schitt's Creek: The show tells the story of the formerly wealthy Rose family forced to move to the unfortunately named Schitt's Creek. The name symbolizes their former elegant and presumably well-scented existence, as well as the romantic nature of all four members of the Rose family. Later, son David opens up a store called Rose Apothecary with his boyfriend, and the many roses associated with the story take on a Queer Flowers context.
  • In one episode of Supernatural, Castiel note  believes he's going on a date, so he picks a rose for the girl. It turns out she was actually asking him to babysit. But, when a rogue angel comes for the baby, Cas uses the rose's thorns to draw blood so he can paint an angel-banishing spell on the wall.

  • In Eastern Orthodox art, Archangel Barachiel, one of the eight named Archangels, is traditionally depicted holding roses (usually white ones) that symbolize the heavenly rewards for virtuous people.

    Video Games 
  • Endrance, from the .hack//G.U. games, has roses on his hat. And is usually accompanied by rose petals during cut scenes. And his Avatar is sixty percent giant rose.
  • Dante in Devil May Cry 4, when using the Lucifer weapon, becomes some sort of demonic flamenco dancer, and he triggers the explosion of the Lucifer's shards by tossing a rose (that the game insists is significant only in its insignificance). Video.
  • Mid-boss from Disgaea: Hour of Darkness, especially in the anime version, appears to have the ability to pull roses out of thin air. One point in the anime he throws a rose in a blatant reference to Tuxedo Kamen, and the animation, sound effects, and general feel of the scene reinforce it.
    • However, he has nothing on Master Big Star, who may as well have a bouquet surgically grafted to his hand for all roses he throws around.
  • In Dissidia Final Fantasy, Firion carries with him a "wild rose" which symbolizes the Wild Rose Rebellion from his game and his dream. Later on, it turns out that the rose was created by Golbez to inspire him. Funnily enough, the rose changes hands quite a bit. Halfway through Cloud and Warrior Of Light's stories, Sephiroth steals it, Cloud takes it back, and it eventually gets back to Firion.
    • In the prequel, Dissidia 012, Firion and Lightning share the connection they both feel with roses (as Odin's summon crystal, which is possessed by Lightning in her game, is shaped like a rose), which causes sexual tension between them.
    • In the original as well, Cloud shows the rose to Terra, who is, at the time, heavily unsure of herself, and explains Firion's dream to her. This causes a powerful inspiration to ignite within Terra, who basically replies, "hey, that sounds awesome, let's not just fill the world with roses, but with lots of other flowers as well!" This helps give her the courage to beat the crap out of Kefka and save Onion Knight.
  • Possibly referenced by Alistair in Dragon Age: Origins in a romance with a female Warden:
    Alistair: Here, look at this. Do you know what this is?
    Warden: Your new weapon of choice?
    Alistair: [jocular] Yes, that's right! Watch as I thrash our enemies with the mighty power of floral arrangements! Feel my thorns, darkspawn! I will overpower you with my rosy scent! [sniffs, sighs] ...Or, you know, it could just be a rose...
  • Dual Blades and Slashers: The Power Battle: The Christian knight Duke Andre can use as a projectile, in a manner very similar to Street Fighter's Dudley and Vega described above, a rose. The in-story reason for him using rose in battle was in rebuke to an opponent who mockingly compared his religious belief like those of a fragile flower. Andre decides to remind his opponents that roses have thorns and thus should not mock his faith.
  • The Elder Scrolls
    • Throughout the series, a rose is the symbol of Sanguine, the Daedric Prince of Debauchery and Hedonism. His most famous artifact is Sanguine's Rose, which can take on many forms, including that of an actual rose, a wooden stave carved like a rose, or a staff-sized rose.
    • In Daggerfall, a red rose is the symbol of Ebonarm, a god of war worshiped in the Iliac Bay region. Red roses are said to bloom on the graves of fallen soldiers on the battlefields he visits.
    • While it isn't focused on much, the Daedric Prince Azura is strongly associated with roses. She holds one in her Daggerfall sprite, one of her titles is the "Mother of the Rose," Azurah's Crossing has a khajiit walking a path of roses to reach her, and it is said that in her realm of Moonshadow she either sits on a throne of roses, or resides within a palace of roses, depending on the source. The Five Points of the Star, a book which outlines the five major aspects of Azura worship, states that the rose is one such point, describing it as "Her color and Her flower."
  • Fatal Fury:
    • Spanish warrior Laurence Blood starts battles off by tossing a rose to his opponent, then shredding it with multiple sword swipes. This later evolved into an actual attack.
    • Fellow matador Vega would later steal this intro for himself but made it even cooler by not moving at all as the rose was diced into smithereens.
  • Jean Pierre in Fighter's History held a rose in his mouth and tossed it aside during his pre-match fight pose.
  • Fire Emblem: Three Houses features nobleman Lorenz Hellman Gloucester as one of the students. He's fond of wearing one pinned to his overcoat, likely to look more sophisticated. Post timeskip, he has one embossed on his armor in the same spot. Unsurprisingly, one of his favorite gifts is roses. In Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes, he incorporates rose petals as flair into his attacks, especially with his unique ability "Rondo of Roses", summoning a tornado of rose petals to suck enemies in.
  • In Friday Night Funkin', Senpai's second song, which plays when he loses his cool, is called "Roses". In keeping with the spirit of this trope, "Roses" makes Senpai into a much tougher opponent than before. Every rose has its thorns, and his third song "Thorns" is sung by an evil spirit that bursts out of his body.
  • In the first Galaxy Angel videogame, Camus O. Laphroaig, the leader of the Hellhounds, is shown in his full-body sprite holding a rose to play up his image as a romantic charmer. Also, in the manga, he somehow arranges to leave roses in Milfeulle's bed, which freaks her out to no end.
  • In Granblue Fantasy, this is Rosetta's motif as it's in her name, skill, and charge attack names, and she has several roses in her dress and hair. It becomes even more blatant when she transforms into Rose Queen.
  • The Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories manga has Marluxia do this, naturally enough, since his power is over plants. He still does it in the manga of 358/2 Days. After he finishes telling Roxas about the Keyblade and destroying Heartless, there are roses all over the place. Even on Roxas.
  • In Mario Party 8, when Waluigi wins a minigame, he pulls a rose out of Hammerspace and poses with it, holding the tip of his hat. This returns in Mario Golf World Tour as his birdie pose. Complete with Bishie Sparkles. Waluigi will also pose with a rose in Mario Strikers: Battle League.
  • In Mega Man X5, Axel the Red, actually being shaped like a rose, takes this trope to somewhat excessive extremes. His Japanese name, transliterated as “Spike Rosered,” makes it even more implicit.
  • Achievement Hunter's former cast member Ray Narvaez Jr had a rose as his motif when the gang played Minecraft. Rather fitting for someone whose favorite character of all-time is Tuxedo Mask.
  • Jun Kurosu from Persona 2 fights with fortune predictions and flowers, including the aforementioned roses.
  • Max Galactica in Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Justice For All used roses as one of his magician symbols. And Jean Armstrong in Trials and Tribulations had roses appear in his hand.
  • Don Flamenco in Punch-Out!! Wii sniffs a rose before the fight starts. In the NES version, he can be seen holding a rose with his teeth when he makes his entrance. In the Title Defense rematch, he carries around a black rose to show that he Took a Level in Badass.
  • Rio from Samba de Amigo often carries a red rose.
  • Shovel Knight: The flamboyant Propeller Knight dramatically drops a rose when he is defeated.
  • In Soulcalibur IV, Raphael's joke weapon is a rose.
  • Star Fox: Whoever looks upon Panther Caroso's rose shall meet their death!
  • Dudley from Street Fighter III tosses a rose as a taunt (and this can be used as an effective distraction in actual gameplay). In his 3rd Strike ending, it's revealed that his family rose garden is absolutely huge.
    • The Spanish ninja Bishōnen Vega also likes to use this motif. He takes it further in Street Fighter V, where his V-Trigger has him throw a rose, stem first, at his opponent, serving as a multi-hit combo opener.
  • Sir Richard Rose, the Final Boss of classic SNES game Sunset Riders.
  • Tales Series:
    • In Tales of Graces, Richard's level 1 Blast Calibur is called Vertex Rose.
    • In Tales of Symphonia if Zelos is in his formal wear costume there is a chance that in battle his weapon will be a bouquet of roses.
    • Dist the Rose from Tales of the Abyss does not magically pull said flower out in the game, but he does have a rose motif in his visual design and personality.
  • In Tekken, Lee Chaolan can be customized to hold a rose between his teeth, fitting with his The Charmer persona. Roses also appear in several of his animations for Tekken 7: Fated Retribution/Tekken 7 console. His Rage Art ends with him throwing a rose at the opponent's face, which does insignificant damage... then he turns around, delivers a Pre-Mortem One-Liner, and the opponent suddenly takes a ton of damage.
  • Olivert Reise Arnor / "Wandering bard Olivier Lenheim" from the Trails Series. He is a Bishōnen who believes that love is the ultimate example of beauty. His character portraits often depict him holding a rose and also often accompanied by rose petals. His Akashic Star S-Craft ends with him being showered in rose petals and asking "Did you enjoy the show?"
  • Quite fitting for his character, Loveable Rogue Hawkeye from Trials of Mana has an attack called "Dance of Roses" as his level 3 tech in his Wanderer class. He tosses a rose on top of an enemy, then rains down a series of slashes on the rose, dicing the enemy and sending rose petals flying everywhere.
  • Wonder-Blue's transformation in The Wonderful 101 features him throwing a rose into the air, transforming and then catching it... only for him to drop it and fail to pick it back up right at the end.


    Western Animation 
  • Used in an episode of Elena of Avalor when Gabe is possessed by the spirit of a vain, aggressive general, thanks to a cursed sword. With the general in charge, he plucks a rose, places it between his teeth, before tossing it with precision to land behind Elena's ear. The princess is not impressed and tosses it back to him, where it lands on the ground.
  • Miraculous Ladybug: Cat Noir is used to hand red roses to his One True Love, Ladybug, since the days of the PV trailer, released before the series even started. As this color means passion, Ladybug, being in love with Adrien (the secret identity of Cat Noir), tends to refuse them with embarrassment (crossing with The Tragic Rose territory for her partner, as a petal fall from his rose like a tear in Frozer). Cat Noir later switch to yellow roses, as it means friendship. But when he handed Ladybug a red rose as Adrien in Desperada, she accepted it gleefully. In Weredad and as Cat Noir, he brought a pink rose to Marinette (aka Ladybug) with the attention to reject her earlier "avances" (she lied, or so she thought). Ironically, pink roses also mean friendship...or tender, blossoming love.
  • OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes: Raymond has a thing for roses.
    • Radicles does once in the rose background from the short "Rad Cries".
  • Played with in a Valentine's Day Episode of The Simpsons: Homer ends up getting stuck under a plane that flies through a rose plantation, winding up absolutely covered in roses. The plane then flies over the Simpson house and Homer gets stuck on the clothesline and winds up spinning around and depositing the roses at Marge's feet. Homer then lands in front of Marge on one knee with a rose held in his mouth. Marge finds the whole thing romantic; Homer thinks he has a collapsed lung.


Female Examples

    Anime & Manga 
  • From Ah! My Goddess, we have Peorth. Her angel is even named Gorgeous Rose.
  • Charlotte Roselei from Black Clover. Not only is her squad's sigil a rose, but her Briar Magic turns her sword into a rose bush of thorns. Even her armor is decorated with golden rose designs.
  • Crusadermon of Digimon Frontier, as a prop and as a distraction (Her Scarlet Tempest technique creates a storm of petals from one flower to obscure the enemy's view of her exit.) She's a Man in Japan.
    • Rosemon is the final form of Lalamon's digivolution line in Digimon Data Squad. One of her attacks involves a whip made of thorns.
    • Rosemon is also the final form of Palmon's digivolution line in Digimon Adventure tri..
  • Chie in My-Otome carries a blue rose around with her, which given her quasi-boyish appearance and the fuckton of Les Yay that she gives off in her first appearance, is likely playing off this trope.
  • Instead of James/Kojiro, mentioned above, Jessie/Musashi of Pokémon: The Series has, on at least one occasion, held a rose during an introduction.
  • Pretty Cure:
  • Downplayed in Puella Magi Oriko Magica: Kirika gets excited about the rose garden at Oriko's home and starts identifying them by sight, only to stop when Oriko says the roses belonged to her father. Kirika is very much a romantic... and certainly has some thorns of her own.
  • Kodachi Kuno in Ranma ½, who's mostly an Ojou with sprinklings of The Vamp, carries around a black rose, no less.
    • She also summons up a veritable storm of black rose petals whenever she makes her dramatic entrance (and dramatic exit), covering the ground, the walls, the furniture, and the innocent bystanders, who complain about having to clean up after her.
    • Black rose bouquets as hidden bombs for sleeping powder and paralysis powder (and actual gunpowder, in one manga story) are also a favorite tactic.
  • In Sailor Moon Crystal, apart from being Usagi's favored Flower Motif, Art Nouveau roses in multiple hues appear during her heroic moments as Sailor Moon. A spray of red roses caps off her Transformation Sequence, and while she issues her In the Name of the Moon speech, various shades of them frame her hand, pattern the floor and ornament the crescent moon of her backdrop.
  • The Devilstar assassins of Science Ninja Team Gatchaman use rose-bombs at times. The Devilstar that killed Joe Asakura's parents tried to kill him with one.
  • Shinku in Rozen Maiden, and everyone else in the show who is one of the titular dolls will have some sort of rose symbolism associated with them. Kirakishou is listed as the example on the anime's main page.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's: Aki Izayoi was once known as the "Black Rose Witch". She uses mostly Plant-type monsters, several of which are rose-based, and her ace monster is the Black Rose Dragon, which is made almost entirely of rose petals and thorn stems.

    Comic Books 
  • Poison Ivy in Batman tends to do this at least once in every incarnation.

    Comic Strips 

    Fan Fiction 
  • Arc Phantoms: Yuzu's Phantom Thief attire has roses painted on her mask and numerous roses on her dress.
  • In Between My Brother and Me: Mors Omnibus, we have the lovely maiden Shirobara — her name can translate into "White Rose", she wears a dress that evokes the image of a white rose, and she uses a Rose deck. In the prequel series Mors Tua, she was once a flower girl who handed the legendary cursed puppets three yellow roses as a sign of them returning to bring joy to her village later. Word of God is that Shirobara's appearance was heavily inspired by the Garden Rose Maiden monster.
  • A rose is the special weapon for the Chibi, the Grass Guardian, in Guardians of Pokémon. This is a subversion of the usual character type, however, as she's the Token Mini-Moe of the group. (Then again... maybe this isn't a subversion after all).

    Films — Live Action 
  • Played for Laughs in Aquaman (2018). While in Sicily, Mera is presented with a bouquet of roses by a florist. After observing some locals eating apples, she does as the Romans do...and proceeds to eat them. She then gestures at Arthur to eat it as well. He fakes a satisfied face first before frowning, looking as if he wants to throw up. As the scene shows them starting to lighten up around each other, the romantic subtext is still there.

  • Most versions of the "Beauty and the Beast" story involve the character of Beauty requesting that her father bring home a rose for her, which leads directly to her becoming acquainted with the Beast.
  • In Rainbow Magic, Ella the Rose Fairy is a Shipper on Deck who spends her free time playing matchmaker with the animal in Fairyland.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Parodied in an episode of Full House. Becky, trying to convince some guy she was coming on to him, tried to execute the rose-in-the-teeth bit. However, no rose was available. She used a tulip instead.
  • Game of Thrones: Michele Clapton designed Margaery Tyrell's wedding gown with the character's personality in mind, and there are visible thorns which run along the costume.
    "I wanted it to be a sort of traditional dress in a funny way, but then roses can be so pretty, and I didn't want them to be pretty, I wanted them to be slightly dangerous because I think she [Margaery] is."

  • The song "The Masochism Tango" from An Evening Wasted with Tom Lehrer mentions that the singer, a man,
    "Env[ies] the rose
    That you held in your teeth, love
    With the thorns underneath, love
    Digging into your gums"

    Professional Wrestling 

    Video Games 
  • In Advanced Variable Geo, red roses are Reimi's trademark.
  • BlazBlue:
    • Lady Rachel Alucard is surrounded by rose motifs. Her stage is a rose garden, her leitmotif is named "Queen of Rose", her emblem has a rose in the center, her battle aura is a rose in chains. And yes, she is often seen with them in cutscenes.
    • Rachel and Ruby in Blazblue Cross Tag Battle, where you can place them in the same team, and they will comment about the rose motif.
      Ruby: Aww yeah, here comes Team Rose!
      Rachel: Make light of a rose and you may be pricked.
  • The predominant motif in Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night. Miriam's crystal skin takes the appearance of blooming roses, and rose petals and roses are featured heavily in various concept art. The logo even contains a rose, and blue roses appear as the replacement for Hearts to restore Miriam's MP.
  • Princess Briar Rose, in the first Dark Parables PC game, lives in a castle with a recurring rose theme.
  • The playable Saber from Fate/EXTRA, a gender-flipped Nero Claudius Caesar Augustus Germanicus uses the rose theme pretty commonly, often appearing as part of her special attacks.
  • Beatrix from Final Fantasy IX is surrounded by rose imagery and her leitmotif is called "Rose of May". This probably symbolises her status as a Lady of War: Beautiful, but with sharp thorns.
  • Alyssa of Gungnir wields a giant lance with a rose motif. Since she's a shy noblewoman rather than The Vamp, the roses are pink.
  • Shirin in Harukanaru Toki no Naka de (including using roses as weapons). The flower is also referenced in her Image Song, "Hyouen no Bara no Fukou".
  • Maribato! has Yumi Fukuzawa, Sachiko Ogasawara, Youko Mizuno and Touko Matsudaira (yes, the Chinensis family from Maria Watches Over Us), who use roses as projectiles. Special mention to Youko, who not only is able to throw up to three roses and the same time and unleash a rain of roses raining from above, but also fights with a rose whip; Curious enough, in Touko's case, the rose throwing is her only attack not related to drills.
  • Rachel from Ninja Gaiden Sigma II has a spell called "Magic of Raging Aphrodite" which creates thorny, blood-red roses to eviscerate the enemy.
  • Charlotte from the Samurai Shodown games, borrowed from the Rose of Versailles series. Quite fond of roses, even catching them after winning when someone drops one from above for it. She tends to stab people a lot in the games.
  • Rose from Plants vs. Zombies is a pretty (for a plant, anyway) humanoid rose who is also a sorceress, given the flower's magical motifs in fairy tales.
  • In Rule of Rose, a red rose is a mark of the Rose Princess and by extension the Aristocrat Club. While the Princess doesn't initially seem like a character fitting to the trope, there is some development later in the game that does give her shades of it.
  • In Smite, Persephone, the Greek goddess of spring, can summon small, bipedal rose creatures to attack her enemies.
  • In Soulcalibur II and V, One of Ivy's whip weapons is shaped like a rose. It is apparently favored by Ivy cosplayers.
  • Satori and Koishi Komeiji from Touhou Project are subtly associated with roses; they wear rose-patterned skirts, tend to be drawn with roses in official art and even have few rose-themed spellcards.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Rose Quartz, mother of Steven Universe, uses pink roses as her motif, from her rebellion flag to her sword and scabbard, to her shield, to how her bubble is formed resembling a blooming rose, and to anything from her arsenal.

Other Examples

    Anime & Manga 
  • Air Gear has the Thorn reglalia, a sort of weaponized barb-wire attached to rollerblades, it is used by a female character that is both extremely beautiful and a dangerously skillful skater.
  • Hunter × Hunter, also written by Yoshihiro Togashi, has the Miniature Rose, a bomb which is similar and deadlier than the atom bomb. Its name is given by its rose-shaped smoke cloud. The bomb is a low-budget weapon of mass destruction and is so small that it can even be implanted in humans. The bomb has not only a large, wide range and destructive power, the bomb scatters a vast quantity of an unparalleled poison at the instant it explodes. Those who survive the initial explosion will suffer direct internal damages caused by rapid uptake of the poison. The poison catalyzes the production and emission of new poison until the victims finally succumb to death. And the poison is infectious. The Miniature Rose has taken the lives of several billion people and about 80% of nations possess this bomb, it's officially forbidden.
    • Netero sacrifices himself by activating the Miniature Rose in his body and he finally kills Meryuem, Shaiapouf and Menthuthuyoupi with its poison, three of the four most powerful chimera ants.

    Comic Books 


  • The Rose Tattoo is practically suffocating in rose symbolism. The original owner of the rose tattoo is named Rosario delle Rose. His wife, who compares his skin to a yellow rose petal, likes to wear a rose in her hair and imagines the tattoo appeared on her breast when she conceived, which is perhaps why her daughter is named Rosa. The symbolism doesn't stop there.

    Video Games 
  • Animal Crossing allows roses to be equipped as face items. Unlike other flowers, which are worn on the head, they are carried in the mouth.
  • Dancers in Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light hold a rose in their mouths instead of wearing a crown like other classes.
  • In Genshin Impact, roses in Mondstadt's flower language represent secrecy as well as an ability to keep them. Noelle wears them on her outfit as a reminder that she can be trusted to keep the Knights of Favonius' personal secrets. Noelle becomes flustered when she learns that roses represent love and passion in the Traveler’s hometown.
  • Ib has roses as a Flower Motif, with each of the three main characters having a differently-colored rose which is tied to their life. If the rose loses all of its petals, then the owner dies.
  • In Pokémon, there is Roselia and its evolved form, Roserade, which are Grass/Poison Pokemon that resemble small rose fairies. (Despite its feminine appearance, it can be either male or female.)
  • Twisted Wonderland: The Heartslaybul dorm is heavily associated with roses, as a result of its inspiration (the Queen of Hearts) also being associated with them. Every member has a white rose dripping with red paint on their dorm uniform, the dorm head is Riddle Rosehearts, and when Riddle overblots, his outfit has white and black roses around his waist.

    Web Original 

  • The most famous college football bowl game is called the "Rose Bowl" or the "Tournament of Roses", played in the stadium of the same name. Teams that clinch a spot in this game tend to bring out roses in celebration, sometimes holding them in their hand or in their mouths and some teams have modified their uniforms to include a rose in their logo to commemorate appearing in the game.
  • The Kentucky Derby, perhaps the most famous horse race in the world, is known as the "Run for the Roses" because the winner is draped with a blanket of roses in the winner's circle.
  • There's really more than something about a rose. In a wider, taxonomixal scale, Rosaceae, or the rose family, is very prominent in the world of fruit. The rose has fruit-bearing cousins that include apples, pears, quinces, apricots, peaches, cherries, plums, strawberries, raspberries, loquats, and almonds.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Suck My Rose


Elspeth von Draken

Despite her grim appearance and macabre magical arts, Elspeth is a protector of the Empire of Man.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / DarkIsNotEvil

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