Follow TV Tropes


Useful Notes / Emojis

Go To
The infamous "Face with Tears of Joy" emoji as seen in various setsnote 

"And, as the pace of life gets faster and faster...and attention spans get shorter and shorter and... (You're probably not even listening to me right now.) Who has the time to type out actual words? And that's where we come in, the most important invention in the history of communication... Emojis!"

Emojis are one-character pictures used to convey a wide range of emotions, people, things, and locations. The word comes from Japanese e ("picture") + moji ("character"), and its resemblance to the English word "emotion" is a total coincidence.

Emojis started becoming popular in Japan in 1999 as a simpler way to send emoticons over smartphones. Apple started supporting emojis in 2008 for Japanese users only and 2011 for the rest of the world, and two years later Android and Windows followed suit. Emojis quickly became the trendiest way to send pictures as text.


The Unicode Consortium is responsible for approving new emojis, and different platforms decide how they will render each one (see right). Every year Unicode approves a hundred or so new emojis. In 2015, Unicode added the option to change the skin tone of people emojis, and the group has pushed for adding emojis more representative of all the people who use them. For example, in 2019 Unicode announced the addition of emojis which represent different disabilities.

Compare to ASCII Art, Emoticon, and Henohenomoheji.

    open/close all folders 


Emojis have the following tropes:


  • It's Popular, Now It Sucks!: It's not hard to find a person online who refuses to use emojis because of how ubiquitous they are, not helped by all the shoddy merchandise made of them.
  • Memetic Molester: 🌚🌚🌚 I'm gonna molest you!
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • 🅱 is often used as a letter substitute.
    • Variations of 😂 are used to represent insanity.
    • 🤔 and variations thereof are commonly used to represent confusion or to throw shade on others.
    • Using 👏 the 👏 clapping 👏 emoji 👏 for 👏 emphasis!
    • 👇📺🤠📺👇👢👢 howdy. i'm the sheriff of tropervillenote 
    • Some emojis are used to represent Internet memes: 😾note , 🐧note , 🐸note , 🐸☕️note , 🦀note 
    • 😭 was seen as the most popular crying face emoji and has spawn various mutations based on it.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Political?: On Twitter, emojis are often placed in one's handle or profile summary to make a political point or make fun of the other side.
    • In the aftermath of the 2016 U.S. election, two factions of left-leaning American politics engaged in the Liberal Twitter Emoji War. The socialist left (🌹) would use 🌽 to make fun of the centrist left, which would use 🥀 and 🍩 to make fun of the socialist left.
    • Right-leaning Twitter also has its own emojis. The flag of one's country (e.g. 🇺🇸 or 🇬🇧) often shows pride in one's country. Reports that Twitter was "shadow-banning" conservative accounts prompted some to put ❌ in their handles. The Frog emoji (🐸) is used by the far-right to evoke the Pepe the Frog meme.
    • Efforts to make emojis more inclusive get a lot of political heat. Efforts to add a Hijab emoji and make a salad more vegan is viewed by some as Political Overcorrectness, while others view them as long overdue.

Emojis are used in the following works:


    Comic Strips 
  • Zits has a couple strips which discuss emojis, most of which discuss Jeremy's texting habits and his parents struggling to use or understand them.

    Films — Animation 


    Live-Action TV 

  • "Emoji" by Brooklyn Queen has the singer asking the audience to send her various emojis.
  • In the music video for Galantis' song "Emoji", the main character gets a package with a heart emoji.
  • Big Data has a lyric video appropriately titled "The Business of Emoji".

    Stand-Up Comedy 
  • Iliza Shlesinger: Played for Laughs in Freezing Hot, in response to a Bad Date who sent her a surreally underwhelming text message afterwards:
    "You send me something that stupid, I'm not giving you the dignity of a normal text back. You're not even getting back a regular emoji. No winky face, no sad face. I'm going deep into the emoji bank and I am pulling out... fried shrimp."

    Video Games 

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 
  • Emojipedia is a reference dedicated to documenting emojis.
  • The Rotten Tomatoes critics' for The Emoji Movie is "🚫".
  • The Wattpad user YarnStore made a story using emojis and punctuation.
  • At least a few lines of The Canterbury Tales have been translated into emoji.
  • Homestar Runner: The short "Squintmojis" parodies the phenomenon, as it's devoted to combining emojis in ways that makes them look vaguely like characters from the website, like combining the bathtub, siren, and sake bottle emojis to form Homestar, or a saxophone, a human ear, and a pink purse to form "'Moji-pan".
    Strong Bad: Are you tired of people using -moji as a legitimate suffix? Neith-moji are we-moji!

    Web Video 

Alternative Title(s): Emoji