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Playing With / Does Not Like Shoes

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Basic Trope: A character avoids wearing footwear whenever possible.

  • Straight:
  • Exaggerated:
  • Downplayed:
    • Alice goes barefoot, but usually only at home or in places where it wouldn't look too out of place (like when playing in the grass).
    • Alice doesn't like to wear shoes, but will wear a pair if the situation calls for it or to avoid people's worries/complaints.
    • Alice is never seen wearing shoes, but is often seen in either socks or loose sandals.
  • Justified:
    • Alice has a medical condition that is worsened by the use of shoes.
    • Alice has a special ability that is amplified by direct contact with the terrain, or feels more spiritually connected if she is barefoot.
    • Alice's feet are too large or too small for any shoes.
    • Alice's feet are too oddly shaped for shoes, eg. she's a Cute Monster Girl or Cartoon Animal with digitigrade feet or hooves.
    • Alice used to be so poor that she couldn't afford shoes... but even as her financial situation improves, she has grown so accustomed to the lack of shoes, that she feels perfectly comfortable without them.
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    • Alice suffers from a foot injury caused by wearing shoes, such as plantar fasciitis, and going barefoot eases this.
    • Alice has an extreme fear of getting a fungal infection such as athlete's foot and/or having smelly feet, and so stays away from shoes to avoid the optimal conditions for their development.
    • Nobody in Alice's friend circle, family, country, or species wears shoes.
    • Alice lives in an environment where shoes are impractical or dangerous to wear, or too difficult to obtain.
    • Alice lives on an idyllic tropical island where shoes aren't really needed anyway.
    • Alice is a firm believer of the earthing/grounding theory, which states:
    Walking barefoot is good for you well-being and health, as non-conductive footgear prevents earthing as well as limiting the use of muscles, which in turn weaken the ones of the back, which otherwise would give the spinal cord more support.
  • Inverted:
    • Alice never goes barefoot, even while practicing any activity where being barefoot would be expected/required.
    • Alice is obsessed with shoes, and does not like going barefoot since it means missing an opportunity to show off part of her collection.
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    • Alice is the only character who wears shoes.
    • Alice wears shoes and only shoes.
  • Subverted: Suddenly Alice starts going barefoot. One of her friends asks he if she has decided to become a barefooter, so she answers: "As a matter of fact, no, I just lost a bet... and it's starting to get annoying!".
  • Double Subverted: Suddenly Alice starts going barefoot. One of her friends asks her if she has decided to become a barefooter, so she answers: "As a matter of fact, no, I just lost a bet... but it's not that bad!" After reaching the bet's deadline, Alice realizes she has actually enjoyed it, so she decides to go barefoot more often from now on.
  • Parodied: A wacky race of aliens disguised as shoes is sneaking into mankind's feet as part of... Some sort of plan... An evil plan! Only Alice, the Incredible Barefooted Girl, is capable of defeeting them. And she won't stop for anything, even if she has to destroy every pair of shoes on the whole planet.
  • Zig Zagged:
    • Alice has a Split Personality disorder, so, much to her annoyance, her disdain for shoes varies depending on which personality takes control of her at any given time.
    • Whenever she can, Alice does not wear shoes. However; Alice puts on shoes whenever she feels she really needs to. (To look professional or for safety purposes.)
    • Alternatively; Alice normally does not like shoes; but there are a couple pairs of shoes that she loves and whenever she is wearing seen wearing shoes is always wearing those.
    • Alice hates the thought of going barefoot, but a friend manages to convince her to try it for one day. Alice realizes she likes it and starts going barefoot everywhere. Then she injures herself and refuses to go anywhere without shoes from that point forward... until she realizes that she misses the barefoot lifestyle and promptly ditches the shoes again.
  • Averted:
    • None of the series' characters are ever shown barefoot at all.
    • Alternatively, the work takes place in a universe where clothes, let alone shoes, simply don't exist.
    • The entire cast are nagas, mermaids, or other legless beings and therefore don't have feet.
  • Enforced: "The actress playing Alice is a real-life barefooter, so early in the development she asked if this trait could be carried into the character. We didn't have any objections about it, so it was quickly implemented into the story."
  • Lampshaded: "Should I ask why Alice isn't wearing shoes?"
  • Invoked:
    • As a wacky new folk joins the True Companions, Alice adopts this quirk (among others) as a way to consolidate her status as the group's greatest Bunny-Ears Lawyer.
    • Alice develops a bitter rivalry with a woman who is well known for being utterly shoe-obsessed, so Alice starts going barefoot to set herself apart from her.
    • Alice becomes angered at the business practices of a certain shoe company, so she begins going barefoot as a form of protest.
    • Alice is the leader of a town or village for whom most of the population is too poor to afford shoes. Even though Alice herself can afford shoes, she goes barefoot in order to show solidarity with her people.
  • Exploited:
    • Alice's archnemesis, well aware of her adamant disdain for shoes, decides to cover his home base with several traps and hazards that would be extremely damaging for an unshod person, like scorching metal plates, acidic goop, sharp spikes, and chewed bubble-gum.
    • The heroes seem to have reached a dead end in their search, until Alice makes a comment about the ground being a strange temperature, which turns out to be a vital clue that no-one would have thought to actively check for.
  • Defied: Despite her affinity for walking without shoes when she was a kid, Alice's parents actively discouraged her to prevent this conduct, up to the point she cannot do it anymore due to a Pavlovian response.
  • Discussed: "You should know better to not provoke a perpetually shoe-less girl; more often than not they can kick your arse harder than those clad in heavy boots!"
  • Deconstructed:
    • Alice's decision of going without shoes is put through several hard tests and hazardous (but plausible) environments as a way to explore and show the risks of it. In the end, she gets a Game-Breaking Injury that permanently dissuades her of ever trying again.
    • An alternative deconstruction of the Bunny-Ears Lawyer type of barefooter: Alice is told that it doesn't matter how brilliant a lawyer, doctor, or detective she might be... her law firm/hospital/police department requires its employees to wear shoes, so if she wants to remain employed there, she'll have to suck it up and lace 'em up.
    • Due earthing/grounding, she rarely gets ill or falls victim to most infections. Also to her surprise her wounds heal faster.
  • Reconstructed:
    • Despite the injuries she gets by walking barefoot, Alice remains firm on her decision, and starts putting herself consciously on tests to get stronger. In the end she's capable of feats of skill and endurance that her shoe-wearing companions could never match.
    • An alternative reconstruction of the Bunny-Ears Lawyer type of barefooter: Alice starts her own whatever department where she is the strange girl in charge. If she wants to do her job barefoot she can.
  • Played For Laughs: Evil Bob captures Alice. Knowing that she doesn't like shoes, Evil Bob proceeds to torture her by making her wear heavy, high-heeled boots and handcuffing her so she can't take them off. She acts as if it's a Fate Worse than Death, and, after being rescued, talks about the horrible things he did to her... which the True Companions take out of context, leading to an epic battle against Evil Bob... until they find out that the "horrible things" she was talking about was just him forcing her to wear shoes. Everyone falls to the ground laughing.
  • Played For Drama: Alice has had to wear shoes for the better part of the season; the entire cast, including Alice herself, laughs about how clearly uncomfortable this makes her. And then, in the finale, it's revealed that the heel spurs she's developed as a result will require surgery.

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