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Weird Moon

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Fly me to one of these moons. note 

"making the moon fucked up is the first step of any good worldbuilding. the moon is normal in your story? just a normal moon? amateur mistake."

The Moon. Our planet's only natural companion, the brightest object in the night sky; worshipped as a deity by countless cultures; inspiration of poets, lovers, lunatics, and werewolves.

Depictions of the moon in fiction vary, and it can behave rather ... oddly.

Size and shape

  • The crescent moon is often depicted in a stylized, unrealistic manner with the horns of the crescent extending an average of three-quarters of a circle. (In Real Life, they always end at opposite ends of a diameter.) Likewise, the inner (dark) part of the crescent is often circular in shape (which in Real Life only occurs if something eclipses the moon). The crescent can sometimes point incorrectly for the hemisphere it's observed from, i.e. contrary to the position of the sun. Sometimes, as seen in the picture above, it may actually be a hollowed crescent shape to begin with.
  • There can be objects (such as stars) visible inside the crescent; in Real Life this can only occur if there's something on the moon's surface emitting light, or if something else is between the moon and viewer. Or, you know, if something shot a huge chunk out of it. If the characters actually realize this, it usually becomes an important plot point.

Lunar phases

  • The moon is never shown during its "gibbous" (more than half-full) phase, and rarely shown in its "half" phase — it's always either a crescent moon or full moon. The only times these other phases are shown is if the lunar cycle plays an actual role in the setting (e.g. a gameplay mechanic in Video Games), and even then these other phases are little more than lead-up to the next full moon.
  • The tips of the crescent moon are often seen pointing down. (In Real Life, this happens only during daytime)
  • The phase may change noticeably within a single night (and without the equally dramatic change in position that this would normally require).

Eclipses and phenomena

  • Presuming the moon and the atmosphere are even vaguely like Earth's, no part of the moon can be darker than the surrounding sky. (The sky is light-blue-in-front-of-black-space; therefore even the blackest parts of the moon will be light-blue-in-front-of-black-moon.)


For more moon tropes, see Index on the Moon. For more on eclipses, see Total Eclipse of the Plot.

When the moon alters others comedically, see Moonburn. See also Weird Sun, The Stars Are Going Out, Alien Sky, and Frequently Full Moon.


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  • There's a BBC ident (the short clip or animation that's playing while a voice announces what's coming up now or later) with people driving their boats over a lake, each one carrying a piece of the moon. Then they put it together and we see a big (ridiculously big) moon hovering over the lake as it turns into the BBC logo.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Assassination Classroom: In the very beginning, the Moon has 70% of its volume destroyed and is rendered to a permanent crescent by Koro-sensei, a super-powered, tentacle monster who threatens to do the same in one year to the Earth unless the class of kids he teaches can kill him. However, it is revealed later that the damage was actually caused by a rat that had been experimented on with antimatter, which Koro-sensei took the blame for to hide his origins. In the end, the moon begins collapsing in on itself thanks to its own gravity and due to the implosion was sent closer to the earth, resulting in a very normal-looking moon.
  • Doraemon: Nobita's Three Visionary Swordsmen opens with Nobita, Doraemon and friends in a demonic world whose moon is blood-red. Though that turns out to be a dream Nobita was having.
  • Animation studio Bee Train has a particular affinity for weird moons. As in Madlax, they have used the moon many more times in different series.
    • .hack//SIGN: Acceptable giving the series takes place majorly in a virtual world.
    • Avenger: The abnormally large red Moon that can be seen from Mars is actually the same Moon that once normally existed exclusively as planet Earth's only natural satellite. After the natural catastrophe that took place on Earth, the Moon's orbital trajectory was deeply affected due too an excessive approximation between Earth and Mars. Consequently, the Moon now plays an important role in the gravitational field between both planets. The drastic approximation between the Moon and planet Mars often originates Lunar Storms, a phenomenon created by a large fluctuation affecting the surface of Mars, which is one of the main reasons why life outside Dome Cities is considered very harsh to a normal human being. The Moon is especially red in color probably due to the excessive proximity to Mars' atmosphere, therefore reflecting the dominant tonality on the planet's surface.
    • Continuing with the red weirdness trend their anime adaptation of Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE- the moon turns red during the Ashura Country Arc which is where an other clan's base is also stationed. Taking place in an alternate universe also acceptable break from reality
    • Murder Princess also features a red moon in the opening titles. The moon is also lush and full a great majority of the time.
  • In Bleach, Kubo Tite seems to like drawing crescent moons by the tried and true method of drawing a dark circle touching a bigger white circle from the inside.
  • Durarara!!: In the episodes Storm and Stress and Yin and Yang, the moon appears eerily red for no explained reason. In the finale, the sky also turns completely black, resulting in no moon.
  • The moon in ef: A Tale of Memories has the points of the crescent meet at one end, which is impossible—and then there are the scenes where it seems to be a two-dimensional object glued to the night sky.
  • In Gankutsuou, the surface of the moon resembles a huge and ominous skull. Strangely enough, no-one ever wonders about it (though seeing the wealth and weird tastes of the upper classes, it's entirely possible that the moon was deliberately modified to look like this from the Earth). More curiously, it looks the same no matter what angle it's being viewed from; the same skull appears in scenes that feature Earth and the moon together, even though what we see ought to be the dark side.
  • The moon in Little Witch Academia (2017) is shaped normally, but has a large crater (or possibly mare) shaped like a four-pointed-star. This was caused by Shiny Chariot in her last performance, when she defeated a monster through No Kill like Overkill. Croix wiped the witnesses' memories, but Chariot retired in shame.
  • Madlax:
    • The last scene of Madlax has two moons, one red and one blue, overlapping each other; this is symbolic of either Margaret and Madlax, Madlax and Limelda, or Limelda and Vanessa (the finale is...complicated).
    • Throughout the series, the moon is either red or blue, and in one case two characters simultaneously see it as different colours. In the Sanctuary, there are always two moons (one red, one blue).
  • In March Comes in Like a Lion, a crescent moon with over-extended horns serve as the backdrop for one of Rei's flashbacks. Specifically, it serves as Gotou's backdrop to emphasis his maliciousness as he beats up Rei.
  • Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water episode 26 (in the middle of the series' notorious Filler arc) has a crescent moon, which is then seen through a telescope as a gibbous moon, then seen outside the telescope as a gibbous moon. (The dark part is also visible on the lower left in the telescope and on the upper right outside, but that is correct since telescopes typically invert the image.) The story claims that the moon seems to move because of the rotation of the Earth, which is true, but the display shows moving stars; motion relative to the stars is caused only by the moon's own motion in its orbit, not by the rotation of the Earth, and would be too slow to see. Moreover, the stars are visible inside the dark part of the moon.
  • Naruto:
    • A chapter of Naruto, in what's probably an art error rather than deliberate liberty, had a moon that appeared to have part of a cloud behind it.
    • It was also said in legend that the Rikudo Sage created the Moon by catching the Juubi's corpse inside a large Chibaku Tensei before tossing the earthen ball to the sky.
  • This happens a lot in Neon Genesis Evangelion, due to the symbolic weight the moon holds within the series:
    • In Rebuild of Evangelion, the moon has a visible splatter of blood on it (perhaps a Shout-Out to the fate of the moon during End of Evangelion), as well as a row of large coffins on its surface, from one of which Kaworu rises at the end of 1.0, perhaps suggesting these contain the Angels.
    • In End of Evangelion it also seems to be unnaturally close to Earth in the scenes where giant Rei looms over the planet with the Moon right above her. Though considering the measurements given slightly earlier, it seems that the animators overestimated Earth's relative size as far larger than it actually is, rather than the distance between the two bodies.
    • In Rebuild of Evangelion 3.33, the Moon has undergone some truly drastic changes: it's much closer to Earth (yet somehow still in a stable orbit), it's rotating at an unbelievably quick rate, there are large blood splotches that weren't there in earlier movies, there's a bizarre red grid pattern across the whole thing, and it appears to have an atmosphere. No explanation for any of this has been offered, although it's clear that Third Impact was probably the thing that altered it.
  • At the end of Patema Inverted the moon can be seen with a ring of orbital debris, likely from the gravity experiment in the back-story.
  • For examples of the over-extended crescent, look no further than Sailor Moon.
  • While Sailor Moon Crystal tends to follow the lead of its franchise predecessors, the series logo features a yellow, stylized overextended crescent as a background element, and a white one as the "C" in "Crystal."
  • The Moon from Soul Eater is huge, bright yellow, a perpetual crescent, wears a Slasher Smile and drools blood. Some clouds are behind it. And don't think that the sky is any better during the day either.
    • And one can apparently walk about on it without being affected by gravity changes or the need for any protective/breathing gear whatsoever.
    • The nostrils of the nose are actually caves that you can go into and explore.
    • Did we mention the breathable atmosphere? Because it's inside ours? And reachable by magic blimp? It also lost a tooth.
    • By the manga's end, it ends up even weirder: the covering of Black Blood used to seal Asura, which engulfs all of the surface but the moon's eye and takes a spherical shape, has resulted in the moon constantly having the appearance of an enormous disembodied breast!

  • The Planet Venus: The moon is about the size of a Fiat and two of the putti are seen climbing the upper side of it.
  • The Starry Night: The crescent moon in Vincent van Gogh's painting is highly stylized, larger, and brighter than it ever has been in real life, and the crescent extends too far around the moon's surface. This adds to the beauty and wonder of the scene.

    Asian Animation 
  • Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf: In Joys of Seasons episode 21, Wolffy travels to the moon and realizes it's made of pancake, so he can eat it into a heart shape as a token of his romantic appreciation for Wolnie. Subverted, however, as the moon itself panics when it hears that Wolnie wants it because of Fragrant Wolf asking her husband Night Wolf for it, and runs off, putting a big pancake in its place.

    Comic Books 
  • During DC Comics' Final Night event, the sun temporarily went out. Many artists working on the event put a visible moon in the sky. The moon doesn't glow on its own, it reflects sunlight.
  • The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (1992): A full moon hovers over Hyrule, counting down the nights until Agahnim's ritual. In the Dark World, the moon sports a skull face.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic (IDW) has the ponies travel to the moon by lassoing it and dragging it closer to earth.
  • The moons of The One Hundred Nights of Hero are actually three women — the youngest daughters of a king, trapped in a mirror realm when he shattered their Magic Mirror portal in a fit of rage a very long time ago. One of them supposedly came down to Early Earth in human form, fell in love with a man, and had his daughter.
  • In Secret Wars (2015), Battleworld's moon is Knowhere, the severed head of a Celestial.
  • Comes up, in a way, in Darklighter, the four-issue series about Biggs Darklighter. When Biggs graduates from the Imperial pilot's academy, his class gets a speech from Grand Moff Tarkin. Tarkin drops intensely unsubtle hints about the Empire being close to possessing great power — world-shattering power, you could say! "Never again will a citizen of this galaxy watch a moonrise in quite the same way. He will stare at that moon - if such it is - and remember that the Empire is truly in control."
    • The new pilots lounge around trying to make sense of that, and one of them tells a story about a man who had tunnels mined out on his world's moon, and they formed a drawing of his face. Then Biggs speculates that "world-shattering" was literal, but something that could do that would have to be moon-sized itself... Then Hobbie Klivian walks in, subtexts with Biggs a bit, and says that they're calling it the Death Star.
  • Wonder Woman Vol 1: Diana and Etta jump to the moon from earth on the back of a Kanga, and once they get there the place is a lush forest with glass volcanoes.
  • In Zot!, "Ring in the New", issue 27, the characters go outside just before midnight on New Year's Eve to see the "Big Clock". "Up there." "Oh, I see it ... Hey! That's the Moon!!" "Yeah. Zot say it's all done with lasers here on Earth." It is a couple of days past new (a thin crescent) and has a lit clockface. This Is Wrong on So Many Levels!. A moon so close to new would set an hour or two after sunset, so it wouldn't be visible near local midnight. On a spherical Earth, the clock's time would be correct for only one out of the 12 or so time zones that could see it. It would take very powerful lasers to have a display that could compete with the sunlight of the crescent.

    Comic Strips 
  • One classic modification is in George Herriman's Krazy Kat. Often, the moon would be not just shown as a crescent, but as a slice of itself—with curvature, implying that most of the moon had been hacked away. Krazy Kat ended its run in the 1940s.
  • Peanuts once had a story arc where Charlie Brown's neuroses surrounding his never-winning baseball team cause him to start seeing things as baseballs—first the sunrise, then the moon, and finally his own head. This was later adapted into an episode of The Charlie Brown and Snoopy Show.

    Fan Works 
  • Antipodes: The moon, in addition to being permanently frozen in one spot above the world, was badly damaged in the cataclysm ten thousand years in the past, leaving it a dull grey color and visibly shattered and broken.
  • The Legend of Anju elaborates on the The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask example. Supposedly, Termina's moon always had a face, and its face would change expressions throughout the year. It's even said to smile on the night of the Carnival of Time. Thankfully, Majora isn't dropping the moon on Clock Town in this continuity.
  • Sharing the Night:
    • The phases of the moon, instead of being caused by the shadow of the world across it, are due to it having a white hemisphere and a black one.
    • The ancient world had two moons, one pure white and one pure black, the latter almost impossible to see in the then-starless night; the modern-day moon was created by merging their remains together.
    • In the climax, Astri creates a new moon by ripping large chunks of long-fallen moon rock out of the earth and sticking them together to create a crude facsimile moon, smaller than Luna's and with visible cracks and holes.

    Films — Animated 
  • In Coraline, the Other World moon is slowly being covered by the shadow of a button. When all of it is covered, everything outside the house disappears.
  • In the Beethoven's Sixth Symphony portion of Fantasia, the crescent moon is used as a bow to fire off a star that lights the other stars in the sky. Justified in that the setting is mythological.
    • Near the end of Finding Nemo, during the scene where the whale drops off Marlin and Dory at Sydney, Australia, when we see the whale swimming away, if you look very closely you can easily tell that the Moon appears as it would in a northern-hemisphere sky: Tycho (the large crater on the Moon's southern hemisphere) is facing downwards. In a southern-hemisphere sky, Tycho should be facing up.
    • In Cars, the maria on the Moon are shaped like a car's headlights and grille, and its craters are shaped like tires.
  • In the Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf movie Moon Castle: The Space Adventure, the moon is depicted as a world filled with candy and sweets.
  • In The Return of Hanuman, the moon is not shaped like a ball, but rather a crescent. Hanuman even pulls one of its edges, using it as a flashlight due to the moon's brightness.
  • In Titan A.E., the protagonists visit a planet whose moon is split in half. Almost completely in half. And it has neither crumbled nor been pulled back together by gravity. Oh, and it's a plot point. It is cool, though.
  • Lampshaded in Disney's Treasure Planet, where the crescent "moon" hanging in the sky turns out to be, on closer examination, an actual crescent-shaped celestial body, covered in stardocks and buildings.
  • In Turning Red, after Ming sends the aunts off to a hotel, she looks up at a crescent moon. The shape and position of the moon are wrong in several ways:
    • It's much too big. The moon in the night sky is roughly the same size as an American quarter-dollar coin held at arm's length.
    • The lit side should be angled down, toward the current location of the sun, and the points of the crescent should be angled up.
    • The points of the crescent should be at the lunar poles, not reaching around to the other side.
    • This is the same night as Tyler's party, which is eight days before the full moonnote . Eight days before the full, the moon's phase should be just a bit short of first quarter, not a huge sweeping crescent.

  • In UglyDolls, Uglyville's moon is a button, chipped into a crescent to look like it's smiling, fitting the craft aesthetic of the town. It turns into a frown when the town goes into ruin.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Alice in Wonderland (2010): The moon becomes the Cheshire Cat's grin.
  • Subverted in Bruce Almighty, where Bruce "pulls" the moon with a divine "snare" to provide just the right setting for his romantic night. Later, we find that the sudden change in the gravitational pull of the moon caused floods in Japan.
  • The DreamWorks SKG logo features a boy fishing while sitting in a crescent moon.
  • Stardust: The film takes place over the course of a week, and yet the moon is full in every nighttime scene from beginning to end.
  • Stargate: Not only are there three large moons which are always over the pyramid on Abydos, but all three of them look exactly like our moon.
  • Star Wars: A New Hope has the Death Star. That's No Moon; it's a giant armored battle station.
  • Justified in The Truman Show because the moon is fake and actually the front of the control studio running the titular "Show". When Truman goes missing the showrunner turns the "moon" into a giant spotlight to search for him.
  • Van Helsing: Apparently the moon in the movie's version of Transylvania waxes and wanes several times a week. After Van Helsing is attacked and bitten by a werewolf Friar Carl says he won't transform until the next full moon... which is apparently happening in three days.

  • In The Book of the New Sun, the moon is green, probably as a result of terraforming.
  • Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels:
    • "Stars" within the dark half are justified; they're the light of Moon Dragons jetting about.
    • In Soul Music there's a half moon and the text describes this as "the most magical phase" even if it doesn't appear in romantic or occult pictures.
  • In Cordwainer Smith's posthumous story "Down to a Sunless Sea"note  the action takes place on a planet that has no sun but is illuminated by moonlight. So what do the moons shine by?
  • The Dragonlance universe has three moons, Solinari, Lunitari, and Nuitari, which are white, red, and black, corresponding with the colors of good, neutral, and evil magic in the world.
    • Nuitari is a particularly weird moon because only evil mages can see it, except when Nuitari passes in front of one or both of the other moons; also, Nuitari's position can be inferred when it blocks any of the stars.
    • When all three moons are aligned, they appear as a big, red-irised moon-eye in the sky. Rest assured, that will be a memorable night.
  • The Dreaming Moon in the Dreamblood Duology. Word of God says it's actually a gas giant and the story's world is on one of the planet's moons. The Waking Moon is also another of the planet's moons.
  • In Everworld, one of the viewpoint characters notes that Everworld's moon seems somewhat bigger than the one in our world.
  • In the world of Goblin Moon, the moon's highly-elliptical orbit brings it alarmingly close to the planet when it's full, causing monthly cycles of ground tremors and extreme tides. The novel's title is a reference to an old myth which personified the moon as a shapechanging female deity, who became harsh and ugly when full.
  • In I, Cthulhu, Cthulhu's home planet Khhaa'yngnaiih has a red moon. It's red because of the blood dripping down it and on some nights it fills over half the sky. He also states it's "a real moon".
  • In Larry Niven's Inconstant Moon the moon is shining unusually brightly. Most people who notice think that it's quite beautiful. The hero realizes that it means that the sun has gone nova, and this is going to be his last night on Earth. It turns out he's not quite right. The sun has just thrown off an unusually bright flare, which has killed off everyone on the other side of the Earth, but it's subsided by sunrise over California.
  • In N. K. Stouffer's The Legend of Rah and the Muggles, the Moon shines through a cloud of nuclear fallout that's impenetrable to sunlight.
  • In Perdido Street Station and its sequels, the moon is described as having two smaller moons orbiting it.
  • The Rime of the Ancient Mariner: Samuel Taylor Coleridge refers to "the hornèd moon with one bright star within the nether tip." It's considered not a mistake by the author but a way to show a physical manifestation of the unnaturalness that results from the slaying of an innocent bird. Isaac Asimov comments on such as well in one of his essays (found in Gold, one of his collections).
  • Under the Pendulum Sun: In addition to the eponymous "pendulum sun", the Faelands also have a "fish moon" — an anglerfish swimming in the sky.
  • Nos4a2: In Christmas Land, the inscape of Charlie Manx, the moon actually looks like his face. It's quite disturbing.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: The episode "What's My Line" features a vampiric ritual that needs to be performed on the night of a new moon. Spike gets ready to start the ritual when "the moon is rising" — which really ought to be around dawn. The script writer goofed and forgot what they'd said earlier: the ritual has to take place during the full moon.
  • Gilligan's Island episode "Ship Ahoax". When Ginger tells Gilligan's fortune, she says to look for a ship when "the moon is blue". Sure enough, that night the moon is colored blue and a ship passes by the island.
  • The Mighty Boosh features the Moon as a character who provides monologues to break up the segments of the show. It's fond of astronomical jokes; it's implied there that there are several moons, with him being the full one.
    • Whether or not that's true is debatable, given that the Moon is the biggest Cloudcuckoolander in the series (in more ways than just size).
      "When you are the moon, the best form you can be is a full moon. And then the half moon... he's all right. But the full moon is the famous moon. And then three-quarters, eh, no one gives a shit about him. When does he come? two days in to the calendar month? He's useless..."
  • Smallville:
    • The 2007 premiere of Smallville showed a half moon with the lit part on the top in the nighttime, as well as having the moon be seen by people in Kansas and China at the same time in the same position in the sky, thus getting it wrong in two ways at once.
    • Smallville also likes to show the moon in the north — which would work if Smallville was located on the southern hemisphere.
  • In the 90's The Tonight Show With Jay Leno had skits with Jay playing characters like Beyondo, Iron Jay, Billy Tuttle and Mr Brain — one of the characters was Evil Jay - Jay's evil twin who appeared at every full moon.
  • Back in the 90's, in one of the comic relief soap operas that aired on Globo, there was a mystic event day in which there would be two giant moons in the sky.
  • The Halloween Episode of Ultraman Tiga have Tiga facing Giranbo, an interdimensional demon who assumes the form of a witch. During the battle which takes place on Halloween night, the moon which is clearly displayed in the background has been warped by the demon's powers — a sinister glowing smile with red eyes is on the moon's surface.

  • In the Preschool Popstars song "Before I Go to Sleep", the dark-skinned girl is able to climb a ladder to the crescent moon and lie down on it (even though, in real life, the moon is actually still round when it's like that and only looks like a crescent because we can't see the side that's farthest away because it's nearly always in shadow.) It's also barely bigger than a three-or-four-year-old girl.
  • From Winter's Night by the German folk singer Joran Elane:
    To meadows calm under three moons (...)
    Follow her now
    Towards the moons
  • The Animusic video Resonant Chamber features four moons in the sky, each a different phase. Given that the video also features a self-playing conglomeration of different string instruments that may make arachnophobes uncomfortable, this can be safely filed under Rule of Cool.

    Puppet Shows 
  • On Donkey Hodie, the purple moon seen in "Hey-o, Purple Moon," turns from crescent to full in the course of one evening, only appears very rarely in the sky of Somewhere Else, and is purple.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • The Eberron campaign setting has twelve moons — and a missing thirteenth moon, as well (one of the setting motifs being baker's dozens missing the thirteenth element). One starts to wonder what kind of influence all those moons had on Eberron's lycanthropes and if they're the cause of the violent frenzies that led the Church of the Silver Flame to hunt the lycanthropes into near-extinction. On the plus side, this made life easier for DMs whose players try and seek out were-creatures to get infected. One Will save a month to avoid the alignment change is easy. One every two days is a much better deterrent.
    • Some domains in the Ravenloft setting provide examples of this trope, such as Sithicus, where a moon similar to Krynn's Nuitari (see above, under Literature) is the only one in the sky. Nova Vaasa was once stated to have five moons.
    • Selûnenote , the moon of the Forgotten Realms planet Toril, is trailed by a cluster of small asteroids commonly called Selûne's Tears (a fitting name, since as it turns out they were blown out from the moon during a long-ago attempt to destroy a Comet of Doom).
    • The moon in DragonMech is populated by hideous monsters and Eldritch Abominations, and it's coming for you.
  • Magic: The Gathering:
    • Dominaria, the plane most early sets focus on, had two moons: the Mist Moon, also known as the Pearl Moon, which has an atmosphere (hence the mist) and griffins (among other things) living on it, and the Null Moon, also known as the Glimmer Moon, which is a space station and was destroyed in the Apocalypse.
    • The plane of Mirrodin is orbited by four bodies referred to as both suns and moons, one for each color of magic except green. Although they orbit around the planet like moons, they are made of flaming balls of magic and supply the primary light source like suns. During the Convergence, each one hangs right over the appropriate section of the plane, too. During the Fifth Dawn, the green moon eventually erupts from Mirrodin's surface and joins its siblings in the sky
    • The moon of Innistrad is made out of silver, a material that can be used to bind powerful entities. This came in handy for Sorin Markov and the Church of Avacyn, since it allowed the construction of the Helvault, which was the can for a whole bunch of demons until Liliana had it destroyed during Dark Ascension. In Eldritch Moon, when Emrakul hits Innistrad, the Eldritch Abomination ends up trapped within the moon proper.
    • The game itself also includes the cards Blood Moon, Pale Moon, Chaos Moon, and Bad Moon.
  • Pathfinder:
    • Golarion's moon has a large jungle created by a natural disaster, known as the Moonscar. It's full of demons.
    • There's a moon that hangs over the Boneyard, the place souls gather before being judged and going to their final reward. It's actually Groetus, god of the apocalypse.
  • Warhammer Fantasy: There are two moons, Morrslieb and Mannslieb. Morrslieb is made up of warpstone, solidified magic from the Realm of Chaos that can mutate anything it touches, generally in a bad way. Morrslieb affects the flows of magic, occasionally sends down warpstone meteorites, and has a (seemingly) randomly changing orbital period (and hence the length of each month as judge by that moon varies massively). On one night each yearnote , both Morrslieb and Mannslieb are full. On this night the dead are restless, and demons find it easier to break out of the Realm of Chaos.
  • Werewolf: The Apocalypse: The Gaia Garou revere Luna, and the phase of the moon at the time of a Garou's birth determines auspice (the Garou's role in supernatural society). You can visit the Umbral version of the moon, and it's required if you want to get your hands on some Moonsilver, a metal with all the powers of silver to effect shape-changers, with none of the Gnosis-losing drawbacks. It also used to have life, until the Weaver sterilized it.

    Video Games 
  • In Animal Crossing: Wild World for the DS, the moon looks normal enough, but unlike the real thing, it rises and sets at the exact same time each day (with moonrise being early in the evening and moonset being after midnight (this is related to the confusion of moonrise and sunset mentioned near the top of the page)). Solar and lunar eclipses are unheard of in the game (the former because the sun is never visible on the game). This does not apply to the original Animal Crossing (2001), because the sky wasn't visible in that game (it featured a top-down view like that of a 2D RPG). This does, however, apply to Animal Crossing: City Folk for the Wii.
  • The Moon seen in the background of Blinx: The Time Sweeper is missing a huge chunk, making it a literal crescent shape.
  • The moon in Bloodborne is weird. Firstly, it shines brightly enough that, if it weren't for the dark sky, you'd think it was just a cloudy day, and the moon was the sun. Secondly, it appears to be under the cloudlayer. Thirdly, it doesn't move until you kill Rom, at which point it turns blood red and the night progresses, with the world turning far more eldritch. It's possible that the entire night sky for most of the game was an illusion by Rom to hide the eldritch nature of the world. Lastly, it's possible that the moon isn't the moon at all, but rather a physical manifestation of the Pale Moon Presence.
  • Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon:
    • The moon waxes from crescent to full over the course of the game... which is set during a single night.
    • In Nightmare mode, the moon wanes from full to new, again during a single night.
    • During the Final Boss battle against Gremory, the moon behind her spontaneously changes phases to indicate which attack she's about to launch.
    • In the second game, which employs something of a New Game Plus, as you progress through the game, the moon somehow grows bigger.
  • Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night: Occasionally, a huge red moon is visible in front of the clouds. This is actually a false moon used by the aforementioned Gremory for nefarious purposes.
  • In Brutal Orchestra, some kind of undulating, pearl-like moon can be seen in the background of the Far Shore.
  • Castlevania:
    • In Symphony of the Night, the moon appears crescent when viewed from the clock tower, full when viewed from the outer wall and Olrox's quarters, and full with a blood red tint when viewed from the castle keep. In all but Olrox's quarters, the moon is also terrifyingly huge. And yet, all of these locations are a short walk from each other, with the outer wall, clock tower, and castle keep all being right next door. Technically though, the castle in which the game takes place is written not to really adhere to real-world laws of nature.
    • And in Aria of Sorrow, the full moon is clearly visible... from a castle sealed inside the moon's eclipse.
  • The Blue Moon in Dark Chronicle is, in reality, the Star of Destruction created by the Ancients so that it would fall upon the world and destroy everything in case anyone ever collected all three Atlamillia and assumed godlike power. In fact, in the American release of the game, that's the Star doing its thing in the logo.
  • The moon of Tau Volantis in Dead Space 3 looks like it had a huge chunk of it torn away somehow. Turns out it wasn't broken it's incomplete. It's really a huge Necromorph called a Brother Moon whose growth was interrupted long ago by the natives of Tau Volantis' Codex. Right before it was forced into hibernation, the Brother Moon sent the Black Marker into human space, making it the Big Bad of the entire series up to this point.
  • Chapter 2 of Deltarune features a moon that looks like a baseball, for no apparent reason. It's likely an homage to the Peanuts story arc mentioned above.
  • The Dig: The planet Cocytus has 2 moons (the smaller one actually being a satellite of the larger). In one puzzle, the protagonist discovers a planetarium-orrery with models of the planet and its moons, and by moving the models he makes the real moons move to create an eclipse. This is never explained but then again, we are talking about Sufficiently Advanced Aliens.
  • In the short indie game Discolored, one step in restoring color to the grayscale region is to pull the moon from the sky using a toy crane and a perspective trick. The moon is later replaced by a hostile eye symbol, which must be banished to complete the game.
  • In Dota2, there are/were two moons: One identical to our own, and another, the Mad Moon, which was much larger, darker, and ominous. It was in reality a prison for the Radiant and Dire, two antithetical fragments of the primordial mind whose shattering led to the creation of the universe. The game's central conflict arises from the Mad Moon's utter destruction, which sparks the Ancients' conflict anew.
  • In Eastshade, a very large moon in geosynchronous orbit causes a brief solar eclipse every day at noon.
  • The Elder Scrolls:
    • The series has the twin moons Masser and Secunda. They are not typical sub-planetoids, but are in fact said to be the decaying remains ("flesh divinity") of the long-"dead" creator god, Lorkhan, symbolizing how he was sundered during the creation of Mundus, the mortal plane. They, like the rest of the cosmos in the Elder Scrolls series, are implied to look like as they do because it is the best mortal minds can do to interpret it. The two moons go through technically impossible phases, stars are visible behind the dark parts when they're not full, and they are unaffected by the series' occasional Reality Warping Time Crashes, which allow their cycles to be used to determine the passage of time when linear time is otherwise not applying.
    • Notably, the Khajiit, for whom the moons hold great religious significance, have a similar, yet somewhat different view; namely that Masser and Secunda are not Lorkhan, but was around long before he ever entered the picture in the first place, and that Masser and Secunda have just been expressed as moons when Mundus was formed by him.
    • In Morrowind, the Ministry of Truth is actually the "rogue moon" Baar Dau. It was hurled in the distant past by the Mad God Sheogorath at Physical God Vivec's new Egopolis. Vivec used his powers to freeze it in place above the city, where it was hollowed out to create the Ministry of Truth, the Tribunal Temple's high security prison. Due in no small part to the player's actions during the game, Vivec disappears a few years later and, after some temporary measures fail, the moon resumes its crash into Vivec city with its original momentum.
    • During the 200 years between Oblivion and Skyrim, both Masser and Secunda disappeared from the sky for two whole years, driving Khajiit society into disarray as many aspects of their culture revolve around their worship. When the Thalmor claimed to have used their magics to return the moons, it won them great affection from the Khajiit, who soon joined the Aldmeri Dominion as a vassal nation.
  • The moon of Eldest Souls was the first thing to exist, and shattered eons ago so that its fragments could spawn Mankind and the Gods, leaving only debris in the sky. Its also implied to possibly be sentient
  • The moon in 11eyes is pitch black in color, which stands out against the blood red sky. It's also ominously huge, staring down on the city like some sort of eye.
  • EXTRAPOWER: Giant Fist: The desert stage approaching Blackberry's pyramid is overseen by a massive moon with its craters forming a skull face looming over the sand dunes.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • In Final Fantasy VIII, monsters originate from the moon via a process known as the "Lunar Cry." In addition, the moon is enormous, occupying a significant portion of the sky.
    • The moon in Final Fantasy XI changes color depending on the day of the week. It does go through the full set of phases, though — despite always being in opposition to the sun.
    • There are two moons in Final Fantasy IV. The smaller one, the Red Moon, is the interstellar vehicle of the Lunarians, who travel the cosmos seeking for a new home. The larger one is completely lifeless. And then there's True Moon, which appears in Final Fantasy IV: The After Years and houses the Creator, who seeded the worlds with Crystals to make life flourish.
    • A minor visual effect in the ending of Dissidia Final Fantasy has the moon progress rapidly from new moon to full moon, in broad daylight.
    • Final Fantasy XIV:
      • In the original version, there were two moons like in IV, a regular moon and a much smaller one near it called Dalamud. As the story progressed, Dalamud started turning red and growing progressively larger, which eventually turned out to be because a Garlean general was pouring energy into it to cause it to crash into the planet. Then, once it was stopped, it actually turned out to be an ancient prison for the primal Bahamut, who went on to cause about as much damage as the moon simply hitting the planet would have.
      • The actual Moon, as revealed in the Endwalker expansion, is not only the prison of Zodiark but also an emergency interstellar vehicle for the whole population of its host planet.
  • Golden Sun: The moon is said to be an Advanced Ancient Acropolis that lifted off one day into the sky, a great big crater being offered as proof the city once existed (the world of Weyard is flat, presumably the moon is as well, despite having phases and causing eclipses).
  • Heidelberg 1693: Late into the game after the Moon King's zombie curse is in full-swing, in one outdoor area you realize the moon is now crimson with a skull on it's surface.
  • Henry Stickmin Series: The Centre for Chaos Containment can turn the Moon into a giant missile à la the Angry Moon from The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask in the Toppat 4 Life route in Completing the Mission.
  • Oddly averting the second rule of lunar phases, the moon in theHunter: Call of the Wild is always in the gibbous phase.
  • Kerbal Space Program has Kerbin and the Mun, which are the game's analogues of Earth and the Moon. But then there's Minmus, Kerbin's other moon, which fits this trope. While Earth has various objects orbiting it other than the Moon, these objects tend to be temporary (see the real-life section below). Minmus, however, appears to be permanent, and apparently doesn't make a whole lot of scientific sense. It's teal and apparently icy, which would be impossible for such a tiny object that orbits the fictional equivalent of Earth (which has enough gravity to keep ice on its surface and in its atmosphere, but is otherwise well within the "Frost line" of the solar system). The fandom's best guess is that it's a captured comet whose albedo is just high enough to prevent it from melting. An honourable mention also goes to Laythe, a moon of the gas giant Jool, which has liquid water and an oxygen-bearing atmosphere despite being well outside the Goldilocks Zone for either.
  • In Killer7, a shot of the moon quivering and pulsating to ominous music is shown at the start of every chapter and whenever a file is loaded.
  • The titular entity of the Kingdom Hearts series is a massive, heart-shaped moon that serves as the heart of all worlds, usually seen in the skies of wherever a game's finale takes place. An artificial Kingdom Hearts, created by Organization XIII using millions of stolen hearts, hangs in the starless sky of The World That Never Was in Kingdom Hearts II. The game's prequel, Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days, actually shows the creation of this Kingdom Hearts, showing it as a tiny speck in the sky that slowly grows larger and larger as Roxas collects more hearts.
  • In Kingdom Come: Deliverance, the moon is always in a gibbous phase. (Static sky map.)
  • Kingdom of Loathing has two moons, Grimace and Ronald. Well, it used to. Some years back, a comet hit and removed a chunk off of Grimace, which is now a mini-moon named Hamburglar. Interestingly, if you look out the window while inside Spookyraven Manor, the night sky is dramatically different, with strange new constellations and a single moon, implied to be more closely based on the real-life night sky.
  • The world of Klonoa: Empire of Dreams has a smaller moon partially covering another bigger moon behind it.
  • The main plot of The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask revolves around the moon and the fact that it is going to crash into the landscape in three days. It also grew a face, and ''cries rocks''. At the end of the game, you travel inside the moon and find that it contains a field with a Tree in the middle. It also hovers directly overhead for three days straight, and when it finally crashes, it's not all that big for a moon. Whether it moved across the sky before the events in the game is unclear.
  • In Mabinogi there is the white moon Ladeca, but there's also a smaller pink one called Eweca, which radiates all of Erinn's mana.
  • In the Marathon 'verse, Mars has been inhabited by humanity. The title of the game is the name of the ship the first game takes place on, which is a hollowed out Deimos. The Player also lands on Lh'owon's moon, which has... Well... Really freakin' weird terrain.
  • In Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, there are moons that are chained to the planet Bryyo's surface. With actual chains. Granted, the moons may actually be pieces of the planet that is starting to break apart. In Bryyo's defense, the Reptilicus had advanced technology and are/were capable of using magic, which would explain a number of oddities seen on the planet...
  • The Moon in Minecraft always comes up when the Sun goes down. It's also square-shaped and rather large. It also has phases, which show round sections of shadow moving across it (implying that the Minecraft "planet" is a sphere, unlike the moon and sun and pretty much everything else). The one exception is the new moon, where only the outermost edge is visible — and about half as bright as on a full moon. It was round for a short time (during a pre-release update). Despite having phases, it still is always at the opposite side of the Sun.
  • In Outer Wilds, all the planets are Baby Planets. The Earthlike planet has a consequently-tiny moon. The rocky planet Brittle Hollow has a lava-spewing molten moon that rains destructive globs of lava on Brittle Hollow, slowly causing it to collapse. Finally, there's the Quantum Moon. This moon is made of a strange material that causes it to not only appear over any of the five planets in the system completely at random, it takes on the characteristics of that planet. If you stop observing it, it relocates somewhere else, and if you're on it and find a way to nullify all light, it will take you with it.
  • In Persona 3, the Moon transmogrifies during the Dark Hour into the physical shell of Nyx, personification of Death and the Bringer of The Fall. Upon Nyx's departure, Tartarus is sucked back into it, the Dark Hour ends, and the Moon sleeps once more.
  • Pokémon: Various Pokedex entries for Grimer says that the species first appeared when chemical sludge was transformed by x-rays emitted by the Moon. The idea that the Pokemon world's Moon emits x-rays raises several questions, chief among which is the fact that this would make going outside at night very dangerous.
  • The moon of the Plane of Water in Rift appears to be a colossal seashell. It's actually Draum, the primordial God of Water, who dreamed the entire Plane into existence. And he's starting to wake up.
  • In Sengoku Basara 3, when Kanbe takes the castle the moon turns yellow but doesn't decrease in size. At the Kanegasaki Siege it's much smaller, but still unrealistic, and coloured blood red with a strange aura, impending Nobunaga's resurrection.
  • In Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne, the "moon" is called Kagutsuchi, and it functions as the Sun of the Vortex World, but it still has waxing and waning phases and can send demons berserk when full.
  • Skies of Arcadia has six moons which each correspond to a different region and supply all of Arcadia with Moon Stones, the foundation of all magic and technology on the planet - each moon provides magic governing a different element, so they're Colour-Coded for Your Convenience. It is very heavily hinted that there used to be seven moons; when you travel through the Dark Rift, you find, amongst other things, a large number of black moonstones that don't match with any of the known magic types. What happened to the seventh moon is never explained.
  • In Star Ocean: The Second Story, the planet Expel has two moons. One blue moon. And one pink moon. The blue moon is in the lower left of the night sky. And the pink moon is in the upper right of the night sky.
  • In Star Trek Online, on the Klingon home world Qo'nos you can see the broken remains of the Klingon moon Praxis in the sky, which exploded at the beginning of Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country.
  • Super Mario Bros.
    • The moon of the Space Zone in Super Mario Land 2. Not only is it very much huge in the sky, and a pretty exaggerated crescent moon, it's apparently floating just above the ocean on the world map, and changes facial expression when a star smashes into its face.
    • In Luigi's Mansion, there's a section where Luigi visits an observatory. As he explores, the wall of the room is destroyed, revealing the night sky with a spherical moon. Until Luigi has to fire a shooting star at it and walk along a path of light to the resulting hemisphere.
    • The moon in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door is a strange one. While it looks pretty normal from Earth, there's a canyon running along the length of it and it revolves in about a minute.
    • In Super Mario Galaxy, the Sand Spiral Galaxy has a moon as part of the level (with the end star on it), and in a rather blatant failing of physics, generates LIGHT.
    • In Super Mario Galaxy 2, there is the Boo Moon Galaxy. Mario lands on the (rather nearby and small) crescent moon, where it tilts left and right due to his weight.
    • In Super Mario Maker 2, Night stages change the Angry Sun into a Moon that acts the same way, swooping down at Mario from above, but instead of hurting him it wipes out all enemies on screen when he touches it.
  • Super Smash Bros. Ultimate features the Weird Moon from The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask as an assist trophy, but also the one from Luigi's Mansion and one from Castlevania as stage backgrounds, so it's possible to summon one Weird Moon to crash into the stage while another one, weird in a different way, remains in the sky.
  • In world B2 of The Talos Principle, the moon is depicted as unusually large. If you look carefully, there is a laser connector on the edge. If you fire a laser on it, the moon turns around and becomes an Aperture Science logo.
  • The map Doublecross on Team Fortress 2 inexplicably had 5 moons in the skybox until an update removed them.
  • Terraria has several variants of this:
    • During world creation, a random moon style will be assigned from a possible selection of nine, and will be the permanent appearance of the moon for that world. The moon variants come in different colors such as blue, green, orange, purple, and pink; and can have rings or its own moons.
    • The game also has multiple Bad Moon Rising events; first is the Blood Moon, which causes the moon to turn red and increases spawn rates for enemies. There are also the Pumpkin and Frost Moons, which are player-summoned events that have you fight waves of Halloween and Christmas-themed mobs. The Pumpkin and Frost Moons have a jack-o-lantern and a snowman face on their surfaces, respectively.
    • During the Celestial Event in Terraria, the moon will be bigger and change color depending on which Celestial Pillar you're near.
  • Touhou Project:
    • The series offers a subversion: a Lunar civilization of long-lived Earth humans living completely unknown to humans on the Earth (supposedly; the backstory is fuzzy around the time of the Apollo moon landings). To conceal themselves, the Lunarians erected a great (dimensional) Border around the moon, much like the Border surrounding Gensokyo. The internal region hidden by this Border provides oxygen, plant life, and oceans for what is dubbed the Lunar Capital; to us: the moon we see at night.
    • Travel to and from the moon only works consistently on nights of the full moon, which allows for a perfect connection. In Touhou Eiyashou ~ Imperishable Night, the Lunar refugees in Eientei have interrupted the full moon with the image of a gibbous moon to make it impossible for emissaries from the moon to come to Earth after them.
  • World of Warcraft:
    • There used to be a second, smaller (and blue) moon, but it vanished from the sky when the first expansion came out. It still appears in fiction, but not in-game.
    • The Blue Child returned in the expansion Mists of Pandaria, and the two moons tend to alternate appearances in the sky.
  • Mira in Xenoblade Chronicles X has 5 moons, all but one of which are absolutely massive with the largest dominating the eastern night sky. They're each different colours, don't have phases, don't move in the sky and stars can be seen through them.
  • While they only appear in the Feelies for Zork Zero, the phases shown in the Flathead Calendar show more unusual ones than normal ones, such as Grue Moon, Large Moon, Fast Moon, and Pac Moon. One phase is even called Weird Moon; it's an amorphous blob.
  • In Yoshi's Island , Yoshi is buffeted to the moon by Raphael the Raven which turns out to be a patchwork ball a little larger than a car. It also had 2 stakes embedded in it used to defeat Raphael.

  • Gunnerkrigg Court has a scene where Coyote apparently pulls the moon from the sky, shrinking it down to about the size of a ping-pong ball in the process, and allows Annie to poke it. Since Coyote is a trickster god, Annie wonders if it's an illusion, but later on Kat discovers a fingerprint which has mysteriously appeared on the moon's surface.
  • Homestuck:
    • In the epilogue to Homestuck, the Carapacians plan to deliberately blow up part of the moon to make it crescent-shaped.
    • Prospit and Derse have moons chained to their surfaces.
    • The trolls' homeworld Alternia has two moons, a huge green one and a smaller pink one with a tiny moon of its own. Its eventually revealed that the green one isn't natural, and is only there because of Doc Scratch.
  • From The Order of the Stick, we get this. Rich Burlew responds to rampant speculation that this is an eclipse with "I love how it never crosses anyone's mind that the author may know less about astronomy than they do. I WENT TO ART SCHOOL, OK?"
  • The moon in Problem Sleuth starts full, but then becomes crescent-shaped when Pickle Inspector accidentally snips a chunk out of it.
  • xkcd #1738 addresses how artistic (mis)representations of the moon might be plausible. Usually eclipses, although the crescent showing lights in the dark part is "there's either a hole in the moon or a nuclear war on its surface."

    Web Original 
  • The moon in Artists At The Ready has a castle built on it that's easily visible from other worlds. It's also permanently crescent-shaped, and appears to be shackled to the ground.
  • On Cerberus Daily News the logo for media conglomerate DDS is a krogan face superimposed over a moon.
  • In Homestar Runner, the Moon is shaped like an octagon.
  • LOCAL58 depicts the Moon (or an entity that travels through moonlight) as some sort of Eldritch Abomination that can drive people mad just by observing it. In "Skywatching," it is shown to have gained a flesh-like organic appearance.
  • Matt Parker from Numberphile points out in a talk how there is a hole in the moon on a Muppets book cover where the stars shine through.
  • RWBY: Remnant's moon is unusual in two ways; Firstly and most obviously, it's shattered, with a large chunk blown out of it. Secondly, it's not tidally locked, and visibly rotates. Remnant's moon is always depicted in full glow, but the degree of shattering that's visible depends on the moon's rotation. There is a phase which displays the unbroken face; during that stage, there's no sign the moon is damaged at all, and no sign of any of the blasted chunks. As it rotates, more and more of the shattering appears. When the shattered face is fully in view, the blasted fragments seem to extend out towards Remnant slightly; the full view of the shattered side of the moon has only been seen during a period the characters described as 'the night of the full moon'. The reason for the shattered moon is given two sepparate explanations In-Universe:
    • The fairytale the Gift of the Moon recounts how humanity once emplored the sun to move faster through the sky, so fast that it'd always be light. The effort eventually caused the sun to shatter, leaking its light into the world. Humanity attempted to fix their mistake by gathering up the light and putting it into a new sun, tying it to the old so that it could move at its own pace. The old sun remains shattered, and can never glow as bright as it once did, but it still moves through the sky, dragging its successor behind it.
    • The actual reason is eventually revealed to be tied into Salem's origin: After the Brother Gods refused to resurrect her lover, she rallied all mortals in rebellion against them. The gods did as the gods do and retaliated by wiping out humanity, leaving Salem alive and immortal to think over her mistakes before departing Remnant. The Dark Brother made a point of departing through the moon, leaving it shattered.
  • SCP Foundation: SCP-1812 is what seems to be a small, yet tremendously dense asteroid orbiting Earth at just about 180 kilometers away, essentially acting as a second moon. The problem being, you won't perceive it, and it cannot affect you in any way or form, unless someone points it out to you, in which case you will be aware of how much the tides have risen, flooding so many coasts, and its light will let you see better at night. Or, going by the fact different individuals can perceive it at different places at once, it's some anomalous thing that doesn't actually exist, and when someone points it out to you it causes such severe delusions people drown on dry land, under tides that aren't real. The Foundation is completely uncertain if it exists or not, how the original finder managed to discover it when the only way to see it is for someone else to point it out, and why it is that the exact same measurements, with the exact same equipment, will give results backing the moon's existence when used by someone aware of it, and give entirely contradictory (AKA normal) results when used by anyone else. And one final phenomenon that backs neither possibility, and only serves to make the whole matter even stranger: The delusions are curable, in a Gone Horribly Right way. Show an infected individual the extra illumination isn't real because the moon isn't real, and they will stop perceiving starlight wholesale, including sunlight. Convince an affected individual the supposed tides aren't real due to the same, and they'll start thinking water doesn't exist, leading to death through dehydration. The Foundation's containment procedures amount to making sure no one finds out about this moon, and possibly attempt to nuke the dubiously-existent rock into oblivion if more than 10% of the world learns of it.
  • The recapper for Hell's Kitchen at Television Without Pity has noted that the series repeatedly features shots of a full moon when it cannot possibly be a full moon the entire time throughout the series run. Sometimes, a crescent moon is thrown in, apparently just for kicks.
  • Unskippable: One of the Running Gags on the series lampshades this in several games: to date, Dirge of Cerberus, and Digital Devil Saga.

    Western Animation 
  • Amphibia's moon is bright red and features prominently in posters and outro sequences, as one of the most obvious signs of the difference between Amphibia and Earth. The series finale reveals that the Moon was used as a lab for The Core's side projects, leaving it partially mechanical and capable of being moved on a collision course with the planet. It is very tiny (albeit inconsistently sized) by stellar standards. Anne destroys it using the full Calamity powers, leaving scattered asteroids in its place.
  • In the Cartoon! segments of The Aquabats! Super Show!, the moon is apparently a vessel, piloted by a villain named Moon Cheese. There is also a cavern at the center containing a massive lake housing an underwater kingdom.
  • Beast Wars: There were two moons revolving around the planet. Only, by the end of Season 1, we discover that one of the moons wasn't really a moon, but was in fact an artificial satellite (and Phlebotinum Bomb) planted there by an alien race in their research on the planet.
    • It's how they figure out that something on this planet is seriously messed up, as the second moon has far too little mass for a satellite of its size.
    • It also hid the fact that the planet they were on was Earth. When Season 2 starts and only the actual moon remains, Dinobot and Waspinator realizes that Megatron had led them to the correct planet after all.
    • Also, apparently the waves from the destruction of the artificial satellite bombarded the moon with craters, making it resemble the moon as it is now.
  • In the Ed, Edd n Eddy Bizarro Episode "One+One=Ed" Eddy literally bites the sun into a crescent moon, complete with teeth marks.
  • Fanboy and Chum Chum. For the most blatant example, in "Fanboy in the Plastic Bubble" the titular bubble is popped by the crescent moon. There's also the "Night Morning" title card.
  • Lampshaded in Futurama "Kif Gets Knocked Up a Notch", when Kif Kroker constructs a romantic HoloShed night scene for Amy complete with impossibly large moon. "And I would pluck the moon from the sky, just to see you smile," and then he does. Later it even saves them during the Holodeck Malfunction when it plugs a hole in the hull.
  • In the Pixar Shorts's La Luna, the Moon is revealed to only be about 50 feet up, and it doesn't really have phases. Instead, it's a dark sphere covered in small glowing stars. The characters have to head up to it and sweep a portion of them into craters to give it its trademark crescent shape.
  • The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack has entire episode {"Over the Moon") devoted to this trope. When Flapjack and Captain K'nuckles are stranded on the moon after getting chased by Eight-Armed Willy, they discover that it could lead them to Candied Island. All they need to do is trick the moon (who, they discovered, has a mind of its own) into taking them there. K'nuckles declares himself 'Moon King' and orders the moon to move closer to Earth, which has disastrous consequences. Poseidon, who is the real ruler of the moon, turns up to kick Flapjack and K'nuckles off and order the moon back to where it's supposed to be.
  • Mr Moon personifies the moon as a small child (the titular Mr Moon). He shines in the night sky by standing on a ladder and watching over the Earth, and when it's daytime and his counterpart Sunny is on her ladder, Mr Moon is free to roam around the rest of outer space.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic has two princesses, one who raises the sun in the day and one who raises the moon at night. This means that Equestria is some strange place where the moon only comes out at night. This means the sun and moon must always be on opposite sides of the planet.
    • The moon also used to have visible craters forming the shape of a unicorn's head: the "Mare in the Moon". This disappeared when Nightmare Moon was freed from her exile there.
    • Also, there is crescent moon imagery. If the sun and moon are always opposite, the moon should always be full.
    • The moon also isn't in orbit during the day (behind the planet or otherwise) as Luna raises it every evening and puts it down by dawn, then sleeps most of the day - implying that she tucks it away somewhere when it isn't in use. Celestia does roughly the same with the sun.
    • Then in "Twilight's Kingdom", Twilight gets tasked with managing the sun and moon, and this happens.
    • The episode "Princess Twilight Sparkle" has a period where both Celestia and Luna are captured by chaotic vines, that Discord definitely had nothing to do with, and with out their control of the sun and moon it becomes day and night at the same time. Nevermind that in such a thing, the moon should not be shining brightly, nor should half the sky be day and half the sky night.
  • In the Ni Hao, Kai-Lan episode "Kai-lan's Moon Festival", a cloud conveniently (to the plot) blocks the moon and only the moon. The stars can still be seen in the sky.
  • The Owl House: The Demon Realm's moon varies in colour from white to red and has a pattern of mare resembling a skull. The skull is not always visible, indicating that it might not be tidal locked.
  • The Ren & Stimpy Show: Ren and Stimpy are stranded on a remote planet in one of the space episodes. Ren goes to bed but Stimpy implores him to go outside and look at the moon. Ren goes back outside grumbling about what's so special about it and cracks his head on it. It's about two yards above the surface and things just get weirder from there.
  • On Sheriff Callie's Wild West, the moon is close enough to be roped with a lasso, although admittedly one with special powers. This was done to try to bring back the night after the Weird Sun was roped, but it only ended up melting the blue cheese moon.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants
    • "Feral Friends" has Neptune's Moon, which comes out once every 100 years and causes the Bikini Bottomites to change into actual sea creatures for two hours. It is later followed by Neptune's Sun, which causes land creatures to temperately revert to their primitive state.
    • "Goons on the Moon" (otherwise known as "SpaceBob MerryPants") has a particularly weird example in the episode's resolution. After accidentally destroying the moon in an attempt to get it back into orbit with an overcranked jack-in-the-box, SpongeBob becomes the Earth's moon by absorbing all the water from the squirt guns in Santa Claus' sack. But this is temporary, as Santa promises to give the Earth a new moon for Christmas.
  • A Tale Dark And Grimm The moon and the Sun are alive and can be reached by climbing a tall tree. The moon asks how the protagonists the protagonist if they know how they taste before the protagonists leave the company of the moon.
  • In 3-2-1 Penguins!, Tell-a-Lie's moon is controlled by the planet instead of its own. When it is on its own, it'll crash down if anyone lies.

    Real Life 
  • Early on during its history, the Moon was thought to have been covered in a magma ocean, and some hundreds of millions of years later lava emerged from its interior covering part of its surface. Were humans around by then, they'd have seen when it was in crescent phase its unilluminated side and parts of it respectively glowing red (and the same just after a large impactor had hit somewhere on its surface forming a very large crater) because of all that molten rock.
  • Because Mars has two asteroid satellites, Phobos and Deimos, in fiction such as Total Recall (1990), Watchmen, John Carter and the TV series Away they're usually depicted as twin moons large enough to be seen by the naked eye in the sky like the Earth's moon.
  • A crescent with a star inside its horns is a famous symbol of Islam and appears on the flags of many majority-Muslim countries. In most cases, the horns are over-long, as well. All this impossibility is justified, inasmuch as the symbol alludes to the possibility of miracles (a key point for any self-respecting Abrahamic religion).
  • It's no longer quite so impossible for a point of light to appear within the crescent moon's horns, as orbiting satellites can pass in front of the moon at any stage of its cycle, and reflect sunlight independently of how much of the moon's surface is illuminated.
  • A particularly common goof, in scenes with a full Moon that has been retouched for one reason or another by adding it, is to use this image instead of something like this other. The latter is a typical full Moon seen from Earth... but the former was taken by the astronauts of Apollo XI — and the Moon is never seen that way from the planet's surface. The Apollo picture is centered on the Mare Crisium (Sea of Crises), a lunar basin that is normally only visible near the Moon's eastern edge. The area to its right, captured in this photo from space, is part of the Moon's far side impossible to view from Earth.
  • Some moons of the gas giants of our Solar System would fit this trope quite well. For example in Saturn, Titan's atmosphere causes the horns of its crescent to extend a lot. Also, some of their irregular ones orbit close enough to show their shapes thus looking quite different to ours or their other spherical satellites.


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Alternative Title(s): Artsy Moon


Local 58 - HIS THRONE Returns

In the hijacked episode of 'Skywatching', the Moon, which shows numerous anomalous features, briefly disappears, only to suddenly return, far closer to Earth. The time to REJOICE has come...

How well does it match the trope?

5 (15 votes)

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Main / GiganticMoon

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