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Tears of Blood

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I told you to stop rubbing your eyes! Now look at them!

"I'm so happy I could cry, but I don't want to because it's really gross."
Jessica, True Blood

Or pus, or slime, or icky black stuff... If something's coming out of your eyes and it's not salty water, then you can bet your buttons that something pretty bad is happening to you. The trope comes in two flavors, which are (oddly enough) each intended to have the exact opposite effect on the audience.

Flavor one is designed to freak them out, and is usually a sign that the person has either been infected by some horrible virus or is being killed by weird supernatural means. Eye trauma is one of the easiest ways to gross people out, and this method has the added advantage that the person can be "cured" without having lost their vision permanently. Alternatively, it signifies that the "weeping" person is in some way inhuman or demonic, or at the very least a candidate for supervillainy. In this context, it's a close simile of the Deadly Nosebleed.

Flavor two, meanwhile, is used to signify someone's death in a poetic and possibly even "beautiful" way, especially if the character is a Tragic Villain. This is far less common, and the aim is not necessarily to freak out the audience but to add a layer of sadness to a death scene. Mopey vampires are particularly fond of this flavour. The undercurrent to this kind of bloody tears is that the person doing the crying is in some fundamental way (be it biologically or emotionally) incapable of doing so through normal means, but is so overcome with emotion that they are doing so anyway.

Alternatively, there's also a third flavour used to signify seeing something so disturbing or just plain awful that the person's eyes start bleeding from the sensation. This serves to showcase the object's sheer Squick or general painful suckiness, to the point of being a Brown Note of sorts. Quite commonly used on the Internet.

Along these lines, statuary or paintings doing this with the first flavour can mean someone present is utterly evil (if the items are holy relics) or that the item itself is an Artifact of Doom. With the second flavour, it means the item is a holy relic that's "manifesting" itself this way in response to some tragedy/holiness, whether of its own or those present.

Has nothing to do with the band in Wizards of Waverly Place.

See also: Blood from the Mouth, Psychic Nosebleed and Blood from Every Orifice, Rain of Blood.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In 7 Seeds, the Ryugu Shelter arc uses the first variation. People who have died due to Arcia X are usually depicted with bloody tears since it's how the parasitoids end up killing their host, eating their way out through the eyeballs.
  • When Mitsuko Souma bites it in the Battle Royale manga, Kiriyama opens the fight by lobbing a bag of shattered glass into her face. She spends the entire fight with tears of blood running down her cheeks... not that it's symbolic or anything.
  • When a Behelit summons the Godhand in the Berserk universe, its features rearrange into a human face, which sheds tears of blood and screams. This also happens to Griffith due to being tortured and Guts himself due to having his right eye clawed out by a demon.
  • Black Butler:
    • The maidservant Hannah does this when her master Alois stabs out her eye (for just looking at him!) in the first episode of the second season. She also does this in the second opening when the bandage covering her ruined eye comes loose.
    • Agni seems to do this when sad... but when he's crying tears of joy, the tears are normal.
  • Bleach:
    • The Filler Villain Muramasa does this.
    • Äs Nödt cries blood when he enters his Vollständig.
    • Urahara Kisuke has both of his eyes destroyed, leaving thick blood trails running from the empty sockets. His eyes are healed by his bankai within a minute or so, but the streaks of blood remain.
  • A Certain Magical Index:
    • This happens to Tsuchimikado when casting a huge spell despite being an esper, in addition to Blood from the Mouth and apparently rupturing blood vessels essentially everywhere. He gets better because said esper ability is a passive Healing Factor.
    • This also happens to Accelerator while he watches Kakine Teitoku stab Yomikawa and then crush him onto the floor many times, despite Accelerator begging him to stop.
  • In Chainsaw Man, the Darkness Devil makes Angel cry those by merely looking at him, though he also has blood coming from his mouth, impliying that it's because of one of Darkness' powers and not an example of the third flavour.
  • Chrono Crusade:
    • A statue of the Virgin Mary is seen crying tears of blood at one point.
    • Joshua also cries tears of blood when he first puts Chrono's horns on his head, and in the manga the Apostles cry tears of blood from the strain of a spiritual ceremony called the "oratorio".
  • In Claymore, you at one point see Teresa having a trail of blood on her face. Part of that trail resembled the path of a tear.
  • The second flavor of this occurs in the Cowboy Bebop episode "The Real Folk Blues (Part 1)", when Vicious kills the leaders of the Red Dragon and takes over the syndicate, executing one of them by slashing him across the eyes and making him "shed tears of scarlet".
  • D.Gray-Man: This happens to Allen when he has to watch a bunch of Akuma getting destroyed by the "Third Exorcists". No wonder he objects to his bosses' methods...
  • Rath of Dragon Knights cries tears of blood when Kharl tries to return him to demon form.
  • Emerging centers around a mysterious new disease spreading throughout Tokyo that causes infectious High-Pressure Blood to gout from a victim's every orifice. However, before the infected reach that stage, they will first notice that their eyes are extremely bloodshot, followed by tears of blood as the disease progresses.
  • While not a real example, Ed from Fullmetal Alchemist has a tendency to look like he's doing this due to blood getting splashed on his face. This is apparently because the author likes to play around with the highlights and such created by a person crying but couldn't properly do so with Ed due to his never crying being a plot point.
  • Hellsing:
    • This seems to be the only way that Alucard is physically able to cry, considering his true nature. He sheds them in a nightmare about his defeat at the hands of Abraham van Helsing and finds himself still crying as he awakens from his dream. Later on, he also sheds bloody tears while unconscious and reliving his tragic past and decision to become what he is. The last time Alucard does this is at the time of Alexander Anderson's death, where he openly weeps and sobs.
    • Seras does this in the seventh OVA during a flashback of her horrific childhood where she was Forced to Watch as her mother's corpse was raped. She also cries blood during Pip's death due to having had her eyes gouged out. She does this in the last episode of the TV series as well.
  • In Highschool of the Dead, people who get turned into "them" tend to do this a lot.
  • Played for Laughs in Hyakko, in which Amagasa-sensei starts crying blood when his students push him too far.
  • Played for Laughs in I Can't Understand What My Husband Is Saying when Hajime's friend Miki is yelling at him for getting hooked up with Hajime's crossdressing younger brother.
  • This occurs a couple of times in Inuyasha, perhaps one of the most prominent examples being a Youkai that reads the minds/hearts/souls(?) of its victims, then provides them with a happy dream while they are absorbed into the soil, as the victim cries tears of blood all the while.
  • In Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple, Anime Hermit does this after explaining his dead little sister backstory... well, it's more of a single tear of blood, which can actually be creepier if you think about it.
  • In Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS, Lutecia's summoned creatures cry blood while she's under Quattro's Villain Override.
  • This happens in Magi: Labyrinth of Magic whenever a character uses too much magoi.
  • Naruto:
    • Uchiha Itachi sheds tears of blood when he strains his sharingan to the limit while fighting his brother just before he dies at his brother's feet.
    • During Itachi's death, his brother Sasuke also cries bloody tears due to Itachi's blood getting into his eyes at the end of their fight. Sasuke now exhibits the same behavior when he taxes his own Mangekyou Sharingan to a much greater degree.
    • The Gedo Mazo Statue starts bleeding from its eyes as it starts transforming into the Ten Tails as of Chapter 595.
    • Creative angles with blood spatter and reflections give the illusion of Zabuza and Haku crying tears of blood when Kakashi runs Haku through while trying to get to Zabuza again.
  • Negima! Magister Negi Magi:
    • In a rare variation that doesn't involve supernatural powers or symbolism, Negi bleeds out of his eyes after Jack Rakan beats the crap out of him, in addition to copious Blood from the Mouth. Given that earlier chapters of Negima went with Bloodless Carnage, it's simply an indicator of how badly injured he is.
    • Also, in a Flashback during the fight between Rakan and Fate's girls, a young Homura is seen, while despairing over having just been made an orphan, with blood streaming down from her closed left eye (hard to see since she's covering it, but it's there). It's implied that she lost it.
  • This happens in Princess Ai with the title character, further illuminating her inhuman nature.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica has Sayaka sporting these in episode 7, combined with Berserker Tears as she decimates a witch. Yes, it's just as freaky as it sounds.
  • Red River (1995) has this in the title page for the 27th volume.
  • This is used as a Running Gag in RIN-NE, as the title character sheds these whenever he's forced to spend a large amount of money. This is because he's a Half-Human Hybrid of human and Shinigami, and also because his father is a major-league asshole who has ruined his son's life with financial debts.
  • In the opening of Rozen Maiden, "Kinjirareta Asobi", Jun is depicted with blood coming from his eyes as he is choked by vines.
  • Saint Seiya:
    • Aquarius Camus, Capricorn Shura and Gemini Saga cry tears of blood after being forced to kill Virgo Shaka.
    • Even before, when they showed up and fought Mu, Mu noticed that "their souls were crying tears of blood", being the first to realize they were suffering.
  • Saint Seiya Omega visits this trope when the resident lone wolf/Ikki Expy realizes the difficult decision that he must make and pull a Heel–Face Turn on his Archnemesis Dad as a result of him killing his love interest and viewing him as no different from the humans that he preaches are the reason why he must destroy the world.
  • Samurai Deeper Kyo: Flavour two is inverted by the Mibu, who normally cry tears of blood but are finally able to cry real tears upon their death.
  • Yuu cries a tear of blood in episode 11 of Seraph of the End when he's overcome by emotional turmoil upon seeing his comrades in danger.
  • In the third episode of Shamanic Princess, Lena cries buckets of these when she overheats while using her Super Mode.
  • Played for Laughs in Silver Spoon: Hachiken is so irritated by his big brother being so nonchalant about getting into Tokyo University and then casually dropping out that he cries bloody tears of rage, while biting his lip hard enough to draw even more blood.
  • Sonic X: At the climax of the adaptation of Sonic Battle, Cream knocks Emerl into the pier. While short-circuiting, Emerl leaks oil from one of its eyes in an oddly humanizing imitation of Cream's tears right before exploding. Note this was the original version only — the dub censored it to be actual tears.
  • Kyosuke, the protagonist of The SoulTaker, often has these as a result of being Back from the Dead. However, it's more used for him to realize he's close to a Flicker. He initially relies solely on this to realize when the girl who he thinks is his sister, Runa, is really just a gun-toting Flicker named Asuka.
  • In Symphogear, after singing her Ultimate Song, Tsubasa not only starts to make tears out of blood, but she's heavily bleeding here and there.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann has a version of it, particularly in the second movie. After Kittan's Heroic Sacrifice, Simon goes on to kick ass and avenge him in the Super Galaxy Gurren Lagann while crying tears of blood. In the movie, the massive mecha is crying glowing tears of blood from both faces.
  • Kaneki weeps them in the opening of the second season of Tokyo Ghoul. He similarly weeps a single bloody tear while holding Hide's body. He does this again in the sequel manga as a symbol of his rapid and deadly aging.
  • In Toward the Terra, Carina's tears run red in a tragic variation on a Psychic Nosebleed during the extended Angst Nuke that results when she believes that her four-year-old son has died.
  • Vermeil in Gold: Vermeil is shown twice shedding red tears during her monstruous transformations, as a result of emotional trauma. The first time when her adoptive family were hung by a bunch of superstitious villagers and the second when she briefly killed Alto during a fit of induced madness.
  • Played for Laughs in YuruYuri; Chitose is told that she would be automatically lose a pillow fight if she has a Nosebleed and Kyouko immediately tries to invoke a fantasy. Chitose holds in the nosebleed, but the blood instead comes out from her eyes.
  • In YuYu Hakusho, the three human test subjects of Dr. Ichigaki cry tears of blood while asking Yusuke to kill them.

    Comic Books 
  • Such tears are one of the symptoms of the Clench in Batman: Contagion, and Alfred ends up bandaging Tim's eyes while hopelessly trying to care for him while the rest of the Bat-family is searching for a cure.
  • In Bizarrogirl, the titular Bizarro character cries bloody tears when she realizes that she's killed a man.
  • The "zombies" in Black Gas have completely black eyes and weep black tears.
  • In Global Frequency #3, an alien thought-virus infects a group of people living in a housing block; each one of them begins to ooze blood from their eyes.
  • In Gotham City Garage, James Gordon sheds blood tears when he tells Kara that she's been found by Lex Luthor's enforcers and has to run away now.
  • The villain Misery from Image Comics sheds a tear of blood every time she uses her powers.
  • Batman ends up with this during the "Amazo Virus" arc of Justice League (2011) while the eponymous virus is making him turn into a more bat-like creature.
  • In the 20th anniversary re-coloring of The Killing Joke, the Joker cries a bit of blood after Going Mad from the Revelation. This is likely from the chemicals he'd just taken a dip in that would permanently disfigure him to look the way he does.
  • In Robyn Hood: The Curse #6, Marian cries tears of blood when she pushes her magical abilities to the limit casting a spell to banish the two gods to the other side of the universe.
  • The Sandman (1989):
    • The Corinthian sheds tears of blood when Morpheus dies. Of course, since the Corinthian is an incarnated nightmare with razor-toothed mouths where his eyes should be, and in a past life was a Serial Killer who ate his victims' eyeballs (this incarnation is apparently firmly on the side of good, but no less creepy), this is really an example of both flavors at once. That said, this is actually a touching moment.
    • Amedeo gets these too, in the second part of The Corinthian: Death In Venice, because the mouths are growing in.
  • In Scare Tactics (DC Comics), the vampire Screamqueen cries these when she reads Grossout's story about how he became a walking tumor.
  • Joshua Brand cries tears of blood when he triggers his powers in Shaman's Tears (hence the title). The three tears are transformed into three streaks of warpaint running down his cheek in his superpowered form.
  • In every version of The Transformers comic books, characters bleeding Energon from their eyes when badly wounded is incredibly common.

    Fairy Tales 
  • "The Juniper Tree": Young Marlinchen cries tears of blood at her brother's secret funeral.

    Fan Works 
  • Bram Stoker's Ozymandias features a vampire version of Adrian Veidt who can go about in sunlight, but his eyes leak blood if he's underfed.
  • In Gensokyo 20XXI, Yukari cries these when she wakes up to find that she and the other youkai had been captured and is overwhelmed with sadness.
  • Mai does this in How I Became Yours when Katara murders her by bloodbending her to death.
  • Jaune Arc, Lord of Hunger: In the chapter "Vengeance", Weiss sheds tears of blood while screaming in pain after Adam cuts her eyes out with his sword.
  • In My Immortal, characters only cry tears of blood and never regular tears... and they cry about every ten seconds. Ebony also cries black tears on one occasion.
  • As one of the pioneers of the Pokémon Creepypasta subgenre, Pokémon Lost Silver features ??? (actually GOLD) crying tears of blood after he becomes a ghost and loses his limbs.
  • Project Riribirth: The cover of the second chapter of the audio drama prequel depicts Riri with blood streaming from her eyes as she cradles the broken Ironheart helmet.
  • Anchorite Ranith cries these at the end of the World of Warcraft fanfic Stand of the Exiles. Unfortunately, it's rather Narmy.
  • In Ch. 12 "Infiltration" of Star Wars Paranormalities Trilogy: Episode I, when talking with a disguised Zolph Vaelor, Dynn (now heavily mutated by her Forceless arm, with red sclerae among these mutations) has one of her eyes randomly bleed. This is because the Forceless arm has gained control of some of her bodily and can screw with them as much as it likes. However, because of a Force bond between the two of them, Zolph can feel the pain in his eye, too. Lucky for him, he was wearing a close-faced helmet as part of his disguise at the time.
  • Thousand Shinji: As Shinji is in a coma, his girlfriend Asuka sheds tears of blood because he is hurt and she cannot help him.
  • John from Welcome to Silent Hill has this happen when Hannah loses control.

    Films — Animated 
  • Terry Bogard sheds a few when Sulia dies in Fatal Fury: The Motion Picture, and then attacks Mars.
  • In Golgo 13: The Professional, when Duke smashes Silver's face with his gun, he develops these.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The opening of Bram Stoker's Dracula has Vlad, the title character, so crazy-angry at the death of his wife (since it was a suicide, which according to the religious doctrine of the age meant that she was damned) that he openly renounces God. He then takes his sword and stabs it into a stone cross, which bleeds. Then the statues in the chapel start crying blood. Then his candles start oozing blood. Then blood starts pouring out of the walls. Then Dracula drinks the blood and becomes a vampire. Narmtastic. Later, he cries when Mina breaks up with him by letter; multiple streams of blood seep out of his eyes.
  • Le Chiffre, the villain in Casino Royale (2006), suffers from haemolacria in one eye, causing him to weep blood when stressed.
  • City of the Living Dead has a scene with a girl bleeding from her eyes shortly before she starts throwing up her intestines.
  • Marlena in Cloverfield oozes blood from her eyes, just as we learn how seriously screwed she is.
  • Dead Air (2009): These are one of the signs that a victim exposed to the Synthetic Plague will soon succumb.
  • In House Of Tolerance, the Jewess cries tears of semen. This is also a Brick Joke set up earlier in the film where she confesses this sexual fantasy to the customer who defaces her.
  • I Am Legend has people who are infected by the virus start to cry tears of blood, then gain a craving for human flesh.
  • A snowman starts shedding tears of blood at the end of Iced just before the thought-to-be-dead killer bursts out of it to attack the Final Girl.
  • Flavor two example: in Kill Bill, when Gogo Yubari is killed with a nail through the head, she cries blood.
  • Flavor two is used in The Killer for two major scenes: one being the blinding-by-muzzle-flash of Jenny during the restaurant shootout that kicks off the plot, and the other being the death of the title character when he gets shot in the eyes by the main bad guy.
  • In Legend of the Black Scorpion, instead of the ghost of the prince's father as in the original Hamlet, we have the father's armor weeping blood from the eye-holes.
  • The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor uses this when, after the Dragon Emperor and his army are transformed into terracotta statues by Zi Yuan's curse, they seem to start crying mud.
  • One Hour Photo: Sy, in his dream, has blood-red eyes with a single tear of blood — right before a lot more shoots out, anyway.
  • In Queen of the Damned, elder vampire Maharet weeps a Single Tear of blood in a dream/memory of Jesse's. This is possibly the only aspect of the film more book-accurate than its predecessor, as when Louis cried in Interview with the Vampire, his tears were just tears.
  • This happens to Marni in Repo! The Genetic Opera after Nathan unknowingly poisons her.
  • In Stargate, Ra's hand device, described as being able to melt bone, can cause its victims to bleed out the eyes and nose.
  • At the end of Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, Bill Haydon, having been exposed as The Mole, is assassinated by Jim Prideaux, his former lover and colleague with a small calibre bullet through the head. Before Haydon collapses, a single teardrop of blood runs down his cheek, matching the Single Tear shed by Jim.
  • One scene in The Trip (1967) has Paul with red tears pouring down his face, holding what looks like a child's dismembered arm, while Sally stands nearby with blood dabbed on her face.
  • Flavor two example: When Lady Deathstrike fights Wolverine at the end of X2: X-Men United, her defeat by having liquid adamantium injected into her makes it look as though she's crying tears of liquid metal.
  • The X-Files: I Want to Believe: Father Joe cries blood after a vision. It's what convinces Mulder that the case really does have a supernatural bent to it.



  • Authors and poets in the Heian era (for example, The Tale of Genji) were obsessed with this trope. "Crying tears of blood" in that time period was the melodramatic equivalent of modern English speakers' "crying their eyes out", resulting in some romantic poems of the period reading a little differently these days. This was a phrase that the Japanese borrowed from China. In Classical Chinese (and occasionally nowadays), the phrase "tears of blood" is up there with "having your intestines and liver disintegrate inch-by-inch" for expressing romantic tragic love.

Specific works

    Live-Action TV 
  • A woman is seen weeping tears of blood in the title sequence of the 2013 season of the British medical documentary 24 Hours in A&E. She had broken bones in her face.
  • Merlyn Temple of American Gothic (1995) cries these (or her body does, at least) during a lovely guilt-inducing vision which haunts the coroner of Trinity — since he was complicit in covering up Sheriff Buck's crime of "mercy-killing" her. The accompanying Madness Mantra on the tape recorder, both as an artificially deep Voice of the Legion and a freakily speeded-up version, is the icing on the cake for this very disturbing scene. (You know the villain of a piece must be awful if this is the sort of thing that the good guys do regularly to combat his plots.)
  • In Andromeda, Beka gets these from overdosing on Flash, a highly addictive stimulant taken as eye drops.
  • Arrow: In the second season, this is what happens when someone has an adverse reaction to the Super Serum Miraku.
  • The Blacklist: In the episode "Karakurt", victims of a virus suffer from seizures, foaming at the mouth, and bloody tears.
  • In the Doctor Who episode "Doomsday", Yvonne Hartman (after having been converted into a Cyberman) cries oily tears as she turns on the rest of the Cybermen with a weapon that can kill them, while repeating the last thing that she said before being converted.
  • The Hands of Blue from Firefly use a futuristic device that causes ocular haemorrhaging and subsequent cessation of electrical activity in the brain. This device is used on Agent McGinnis and the Feds with nightmarish results in the episode "Ariel" after they admit that they have had verbal contact with River, whom they want to recapture. They start to bleed from the nose and mouth, too — the device appears to kill by causing fatal internal hemorrhaging. In Those Left Behind, the weapons used by the Hands are shown to be even more powerful, liquefying a man's entire body and leaving only a tattered husk of skin behind.
  • Game of Thrones: After spending a good minute asphyxiating, Joffrey begins to bleed from the eyes before he finally expires.
  • Maya and her brother from Heroes have a weird joint power; the woman, when stressed, begins to ooze black tears of poison. Anyone within a certain radius also begins to ooze the tears, but unlike her they subsequently die. The only way to stop the "infection" and revive those who have not been infected for long is for her brother (who is unaffected) to hold her hands and calm her down, at which point the tears turn into regular water. At the start of season two, they do this around eighty times an episode; eventually, Maya learns how to control it herself.
  • Interview with the Vampire (2022): Vampires cry tears of blood, as shown whenever they get overly emotional.
  • Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger: Bandora suffers from this while harnessing the darkest of magic to summon Dai Satan.
  • Murdoch Mysteries: The Victim of the Week in "Shades of Grey" starts bleeding from her eyes after taking an overdose of pennyroyal oil to induce an abortion.
  • In NCIS, the team receives a clue ahead of time from a Serial Killer implying that his next victim will cry tears of blood. He does. It's creepy.
  • In Smallville, this is an early sign that the resurrection serum is starting to wear off. When Adam Knight is first seen suffering from it, he tries to dismiss it as a broken capillary, which is probably true to some extent.
  • Supernatural:
    • The first sign of Bloody Mary's presence is that her victims begin to bleed from the eyes.
    • A statue of the Virgin Mary also starts to cry blood to mark the approach of the demon Alistair.
    • In a season 8 episode, Castiel sheds a bloody tear as a side effect of Naomi's mind-control.
  • This is how vampires cry in True Blood.
  • The X-Files has an alien virus made of black oil that can control its hosts. The infected are shown to have black oil swirling in their eyes and sometimes weep it too.
  • Vlad secretes a thick black liquid from his eyes in Series Four of Young Dracula, after he bites his father to save him from Elizabeta's poison lipstick. To top it off, it also comes out of his ears, nose, and hands. Nightmare Fuel at its finest.

  • Ayumi Hamasaki's Brillante music video features this.
  • Unsurprisingly, the Blind Guardian song "Blood Tears" mentions this very trope. (It's about the torture of Maedhros from The Silmarillion — that particular detail is not in the book itself at all, though.)
  • Blue Öyster Cult's Unknown Tongues is about a devout Catholic schoolgirl who manifests the Stigmata, bleeding where Christ bled.note 
  • Most of the Japanese band D's music centers around a story in which the vampire characters cry blood, which in turn transforms into rubies after several seconds' worth of exposure to the air (can be seen in the music video for Rosenstrauss).
  • Demon Hunter's song "Blood in the Tears" is about just this.
  • The video for Ego Likeness's song "Treacherous Thing" depicts Donna Lynch with blood pouring from her eyes, coupled with a Slasher Smile.
  • Grave Digger has song with the exact title and theme on the Best of the Eighties compilation.
  • Nightwish (Band) with an early song, "Angels Fall First" ("Tears of blood, tears of fear..."). Also used in the music video for "Amaranth", which involves a Fallen Angel crying blood through its blindfold. The imagery for this was inspired by Finland's "national painting".
  • In the video for Project Pitchfork's "Lament", the mask of one of the dancers has a Zalgo-esque black ooze dripping from the eyeholes.
  • This happens to Billy Corgan in The Smashing Pumpkins' "Try, Try, Try" video.
  • Vision Through Sound's "Something to That Defect" has the line "You look so pretty through these bleeding eyes."
  • There is a Swedish folk ballad called "Styvmodern" (The Stepmother) were three children weeps over their mother's grave. The first one cries regular tears (water) and the second cries blood, with the third one's crying raising the ghost of the mother.

    Myths & Religion 
  • This occurs in one version of the Classical Myth of Orpheus. When he plays his music for the entire underworld, the Erinyes (the furies), who torture condemned souls therein, actually stop the torture to weep bloody tears at the beauty of the music.
  • In some Islamic traditions, the damned will weep blood in Hell.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • Ravenloft (2nd edition) has a magic item that looked like a valuable coin. It can be used to trick merchants, but every time the owner uses it this way, he begins to shed tears of blood that terrify anyone viewing him. The amount of time that the tears persist depends on how big an amount of money you stole. The coin is cursed and very hard to get rid of — it bonds once you use it in a single scam, even once.
    • A wheep is a type of undead that appears as a shriveled corpse with mouths in its palms and empty eye sockets (its art depicts it with large nails driven into them) that constantly leak black ichor that interferes with its sniveling and wailing. These "tears" are a deadly poison that applies to a wheep's claw and bite attacks, but also make the thing easy to track through a dungeon.
  • Magic: The Gathering:
    • The Blood of the Martyr card — or, for the "icky black stuff" version, several black cards such as Demonic Collusion and Sudden Spoiling.
    • As seen in the Time Spiral block, early stages of phthisis (pronounced TIE-sis) cause the victim's eyes to turn black, their tear ducts to corrode open, and their tears to turn black and sludgy, meaning that just about every black-aligned creature in that block was constantly weeping black tears from black eyes.
  • Pathfinder has Szuriel, who sports a steady stream of blood from her eyes. This is far from the most terrifying thing about her.
  • In Vampire: The Masquerade, since vampires have no bodily fluids apart from vitae, when they cry, they cry tears of blood. It is considered very vulgar among the Ventrue. This seems to apply to most stress responses, as there are occasional references to "blood sweats" when a vampire is particularly aggrieved.
  • Warhammer 40,000:
    • Apparently, staring at a Chaos symbol for long enough will result in this, along with mild nausea and insanity.
    • When Psychic Powers are used, psychic phenomena sometimes occur as a side effect, ranging from harmless flavor text to terrible game-altering chaos. One of the lesser effects is "Tears of Blood", where all portraits, statues, and other inanimate objects with "faces" appear to weep blood for a short period of time.


  • Living Dead Dolls:
    • Lamenta has them, but unlike most examples she doesn't seem to suffer from them.
      The third of three sisters who pollute our world
      The offspring of a witch who had three little girls
      Lamenta is the most beautiful and holds the most power
      Her sweet tears of blood shall rain down like a shower
    • The Hopping Vampire's doll has them, though its description doesn't mention why.

    Video Games 
  • In AdventureQuest Worlds, FEAR, the main boss of the Fear Chaser event, actually leaks lava from his eye sockets.
  • Some upgrades in The Binding of Isaac will turn Isaac's tears red, with various effects. Incidentally, these upgrades include propping his eyes open with toothpicks (which makes him cry harder) and reading demonic scriptures (gives Isaac a damage up for the room).
  • In Castle Red, Margaery is a maid with blood running from her eyes. Later on, Cecilia sports this following her Face–Heel Turn, Peter's eyes start bleeding just before his death, and depending on what happens in the Hanging Gardens, Jonathon may gain some bloody tears as well. It appears to be the first symptom of worm infestation.
  • The Castlevania games have a number of examples:
    • First and foremost is the recurring villain Carmilla. She's been appearing since Castlevania II: Simon's Quest, and while she doesn't personally cry tears of blood, she has a mask and a flying skull that do. For this reason, she's associated with one of the series' greatest musical themes, "Bloody Tears" (which also debuted in Simon's Quest); it's her theme in Castlevania: Judgment, for instance. Castlevania: Lords of Shadow gave all this history a Shout-Out in the narration:
      "Poor, beautiful Carmilla... you will cry bloody tears before this night has ended."
    • Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow utilizes the villain-induced statuary variety in the castle's throne room, in which an enormous statue of a woman's face has cried a river of blood across much of the room, all in response to the presence of Graham Jones, who believes that he is the reincarnation of Dracula. However, this may not in fact have anything at all to do with the villain's presence, since a statue that continually cries blood seems like something Count Dracula would have had installed in his throne room simply for decor.
    • There's a statue in the X68000 version of Castlevania (later ported as Castlevania Chronicles) that cries tears of blood that turn into invincible skeletons. "Bloody Tears" is played here too.
    • There are similar statues in Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance in the Skeleton's Den that also produce Blood Skeletons with their tears.
    • In Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin, there's a quest that requires fetching some holy water, which you get from a crying statue. From the same game, one (technically two, since you control a pair of characters in this game) of the bonus characters have a picture of a woman crying blood on their Game Over screen. Somewhat startling the first time you see it since they are the only characters with a different game over screen and the image is rather creepy.
    • A statue that cries blood is also seen in one room in Castlevania 64. The blood turns into a blood monster.
    • In Haunted Castle, Dracula keeps a big painting of a blonde woman that weeps blood when Simon goes near it. The "Bloody Tears" song is remixed in this game as well.
  • This happens to undead Sky Dragons in Cave Story.
  • The Convenience Store: One night, the Player Character can go in a hole in the fence behind the titular store, where she finds a small shed. Inside is a dead body with blood trickling down his face from his eyes.
  • Cult of the Lamb has bright red, bleeding eyes as a common motif, down to the title card. The titular Lamb's eyes will often bleed in the middle of rituals, sermons, and other moments of channeled power.
  • In the second episode of the Darkness series, a ghost girl who has tears of blood running down her face stalks the heroine.
  • This occurs briefly in Dead Space 2 when Isaac gets done with the NoonTech Diagnostic Machine. It's even worse if you fail the sequence, which will result in a fountain of blood erupting from Isaac's eye.
  • Solving one of the puzzles in Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening results in two statues joining a third in weeping tears of blood.
  • In Dishonored, victims of The Plague cry tears of blood, hence why they are called Weepers.
  • The original readme (and subsequent instruction manuals) of Doom reads "Some of the ceilings in DOOM can smash you, making you cry blood."
  • In The Elder Scrolls II: Daggerfall, being infected with vampirism (a .06% chance every time you get hit by a vampire — who, by the way, are obnoxiously powerful) causes you to have a dream the next time you sleep in which a beautiful woman cries tears of blood.
  • The zombies in Ghoul Grind: Night of the Necromancer all have blood coming out of their eye sockets.
  • Later in the game, Heavy Rain has this happen to Jayden because of his overuse of ARI to desperately trying to figure out who the Origami Killer is. At first, it's assumed that the triptocaine that Jayden is taking is the cause, but it's seen in one of the endings that ARI is just as addictive. For reference, if blood is coming from his nose, it's the drug; if it's coming from his eyes, it's the ARI.
  • A teaser trailer for The House of the Dead: OVERKILL has the announcer saying that you'll "cry tears of blood from your own eyes!", or something similar.
  • Zero, the True Final Boss of Kirby's Dream Land 3, is a giant white and red eyeball who attacks by weaponizing this trope, either launching big blobs of blood from its iris or outright opening cuts on its body to fire smaller blood projectiles. Its successor, Zero Two, bleeds from its iris whenever it's attacked (though due to the primitive 3D graphics, it looks a bit like an explosion instead).
  • The Hunter of Left 4 Dead has blood all around his eyes, suggesting Eye Scream of some variety. (It's not clear whether he actually has eyes or not.) They don't bleed during the game, though.
  • The Knight of Despair from Lobotomy Corporation perpetually sheds inky black tears which become more obvious when she's in a berserk state, with the tears flowing down her face from her equally dark eyes. Her victims' eyes also blacken and cry dark tears when killed.
  • Magna Carta: Tears of Blood has this too, obviously enough — and with a weird theme song, too.
  • Mass Effect 3: Shepard weeps blood and has a Psychic Nosebleed while being telepathically contacted by a leviathan, the creatures that created the Reapers and on whom most large Reapers are modeled in form, in the Leviathan DLC.
  • Wallachia of Melty Blood. This is because his eyes are pools of blood, which is why he keeps them closed.
  • The Sorrow, a ghostly spirit medium and member of the Cobra Unit from Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, cries tears of blood from his left eye before and after his confrontation with Naked Snake. It's later revealed that he was the paramour of Snake's mentor The Boss, and was shot through that eye by her in order to keep their child safe from the Philosophers. That child, by the way, would grow up to be Revolver Ocelot, which is later used to Hand Wave Ocelot being possessed by the ghost of Liquid Snake: his father was a medium. And then the "Nanomachines" Retcon came along in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots and confused everyone even more.
  • Okaeri: The woman hanging from a noose in the living room has blood coming out of her eyes.
  • The intro movie for the fifth chapter in Phantasmagoria shows Adrienne lying on her bed when suddenly tears of blood start streaming down her cheeks. It turns out to be a bad dream.
  • Planescape: Torment:
    • The Tears of Lhys were wept by the Mercykiller Lhys (naturally), falsely condemned for a crime and tortured to death; his innocence was only discovered after the fact. He wept exactly twelve tears of blood before dying. These became minor artifacts, and could be used by the character to permanently enhance one's Constitution score.
    • The Nameless One also weeps bloody tears after reliving an evil moment in which one of his previous incarnations lured a girl to her death by pretending to be in love with her.
  • The opening to Resident Evil 5 shows some poor guy being infected with Uroboros that makes him weep black, oily tears.
  • Sepperin Stage 2's stage title in RosenkreuzStilette is "Bloody Tears". It even features a statue crying blood in the background of the Poltergeist boss battle at the end. The sequel, Freudenstachel, contains a Flavor 2 example when Eifer Skute's Dark Devil form is defeated.
  • Ishida Mitsunari cries Black Blood in his red path ending in Sengoku Basara. The fandom tends to joke about runny mascara.
  • Towards the end of Silent Hill, during a confrontation with Harry in which Lisa Garland discovers that she is not actually human but the same as the other demonic nurses created by Alessa's nightmares, a cutscene shows her weeping blood before it begins to just ooze out from her skin.
  • In Siren, all of the shibito have tears of blood. Justified, as it's their human blood being ejected as their red liquids get replaced with the red water.
  • The final boss of Skies of Arcadia has a special attack which starts with bloody tears coming down from his eyes.
  • One of the female devils in Soul At Stake appears to be weeping these.
  • Trauma Center: Flavor 1 is used a lot in Trauma Team. This is almost always the point where the person bleeding from the eyes is about to die from the Rosalia virus.
  • In A Witch's Tale, the White Rabbit cries perpetual tears of blood.

    Visual Novels 


    Web Original 
  • Mystery Skulls Animated: In "The Future", after the ghostly Lewis snatches his locket back from Arthur and looks inside, seeing the restored photo of the Mystery Skulls together, he falls to his knees and begins crying black ooze.
  • The title screen of Sonic.exe depicts Sonic with Zalgo-style black bleeding eyes.
  • Whateley Universe: In Ayla and the Grinch, Phase is fighting a demon and losing; he's beaten and broken, lying at the base of the thing, and blood is dripping from his eye, along with pretty much everywhere else. He gets rescued and healed.
  • In the world of the Year Zero Alternate Reality Game, an anti-viral agent nicknamed "Copper" causes orange secretions in users. In the "Star Chamber" terrorism incident, a supposed government agent is seen "crying orange tears".
  • Zalgo makes his victims cry oil when He Comes.

    Western Animation 
  • Castlevania (2017):
    • Dracula cries bloody tears in the first episode upon hearing of his wife's execution. No doubt referencing the song from the games. The second season similarly shows his eyes becoming almost uniformly red with blood whenever he gets really angry, though it doesn't drip from his eyes like it did in the first episode.
    • Carmilla's eyes become bloodshot as she's losing her last fight against Isaac and his army of night monsters. As he moves in for the kill, she sheds one last tear of blood and kills herself in a violent explosion in a failed bid to take Isaac down with her.
  • In the Family Guy episode "Patriot Games", when Stewie smashes a glass over Brian's head, blood starts dripping from his eyes.
  • Final Space: In Episode 8, the protagonists enter the mind of the titan Bolo. The experience is quite stressful, and halfway, Gary starts bleeding from his eyes as a result.
  • Metalocalypse:
    • Murderface sheds a Single Tear of blood in the episode "Birthdayface" when the other members of the band get him a collection of priceless pieces of American history, specifically for him to destroy as he sees fit.
    • The music video for "Detharmonic" has singer Nathan Explosion crying tears of blood as he does his taxes. Taxes are just that brutal.

    Real Life 
  • Haemolacria is a physical condition in which blood is found in tears; this can be anything from a small trace to flows of red.
  • Stretching the definition a little bit, but the horned lizard (also known as the "horny toad") can squirt blood from its eyes up to a distance of three feet to ward off predators.
  • There are claims that some statues of the Virgin Mary (and statues of others, but almost exclusively Mary) have wept skim milk, blood and other substances in a miraculous fashion. Skeptics claim that the phenomenon can be attributed to condensation, group suggestion or hoaxes. Fortean Times reports frequently on these occurrences.
    • There's a story about weeping icons of Virgin Mary in Peter the Great's Russia. They started weeping (lamp oil, not blood) in one of the monasteries. Peter arrived to that monastery, examined an icon and found there's a small reservoir of oil in it. Then he decreed: "If any icons in my country weep with oil, the monks' asses will weep with blood!". Miraculously, the miracles of weeping icons ceased and never reappeared during Peter's lifetime.
  • St. Jacinta Marto, one of the three kids who saw visions of the Virgin Mary at Fatima, was also a horrifically ill girl (you do not want details) who died as per her own predictions at the age of nine in a Lisbon hospital. During the hearings for her beatification, the nuns who prepared her for burial testified that they found tears of blood on her face.
  • At least one Ancient Greek temple used machinery to make statues of gods appear to weep blood.
  • Some people suffering from stigmata are said to weep tears of blood.
  • If a person suffers of extreme altitude sickness, their ocular tear conducts break and blood pours from them. By that time, though, the person is practically dead because of the chronic lack of oxygen.
  • In a very scary version of Truth in Television we have an episode of National Geographic, featuring a girl spontaneously bleeding from her eyes, head, nose, and hands. There is no known reason for this.
  • Something like this occurs with hippopotamuses, except in this case, they sweat blood, or a substance that resembles blood.
  • Rats eliminate excess porphyrins, a dark red metabolic waste product, in their tears and nasal mucus. Inexperienced owners of pet rats sometimes rush their animals to the vet, assuming a runny nose or irritated eyes are actually bleeding.
  • Endometriosis is an unpleasant condition where the lining of the uterus shows up in places it's not supposed to, such as the body cavity. There was a woman who had a patch show up in her eye — and since endometriotic tissue will still be effected by menstrual cycles, she suffered this trope monthly.
  • Ebola makes you bleed from every hole in your body, including your tear ducts.
  • People who have had certain types of eye surgery sometimes cry blood afterward to clear buildup in the tear ducts.
  • People who suffer from nosebleeds can occasionally find blood flowing from their tear ducts as a result of blood failing to clot and being backed up into the nose until it's only way out is through tear ducts.
  • Heartbreakingly inverted with the 1998 murder of Matthew Shepard. When paramedics found him, horrifically beaten and left for dead tied to a fence, his face was covered in blood except where it was washed away by his tears.

Alternative Title(s): Bloody Tears


The Sorrow's Death

His eye bleeds for a reason.

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