Ocular Gushers

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This is the story of a filly, who cried a river and looked kinda silly....
"Pedro's tears are once again flowing like waterfalls!"
Pedro, Excel Saga

Just as the human body contains gallons of highly pressurized blood, it also contains an equal amount of tears at a similar pressure. Under the proper emotional stimulus, these tears can emerge as cascading sheets, actual waterfalls, or even firehose-like streams, all emitted from the eyes (of course).

Some characters require less stimulus than others.

It is Older Than Television; early American animation had a number of minor characters (who were usually minor in the sense of age as well) who would begin high-pressure crying at the drop of a hat (sometimes preceded by Puppy Dog Eyes, though that was more typically a signal for a poignant single glistening teardrop). Sometimes called the "Fire Hydrant Wail" in the case of the more extreme versions.

Compare Sparkling Stream of Tears, Manly Tears, Tender Tears.

Contrast Trying Not to Cry, Single Tear, Inelegant Blubbering (both of which involves rather fewer and rather more realistic tears), Fireball Eyeballs.

Examples of Ocular Gushers include:

Advertising[edit | hide | hide all]

  • British advert for Walkers Crisps, playing on footballer Paul Gascoigne's famous tears at the 1990 World Cup, fits him with a couple of hoses for a rare Live-Action version of Ocular Gushers. Here you go.


Anime & Manga[edit | hide]

  • In Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood May extinguishes a fire with her tears.
  • In Kill la Kill, Mako cries over Gamagōri. Literally. Her tears are landing on the other side of this person's body, who is admittedly lying down.
  • Excel Saga
    • Pedro in the anime (as the opening quote attests).
    • In the manga, this literally happens to Ropponmatsu II; crying caused the little robot girl to spring a leak.
    • In Puni Puni Poemi, too.
  • Ranma One Half
    • Sôun Tendô. In fact, one reading of his name in Japanese means "Crying Man".
    • And in the manga, when Happôsai needs Ranma's tears for a Fountain of Youth potion, poking a pressure point on Ranma's back causes him to literally blast a torrent of tears out his eyes, so that Happôsai has to catch them in a bucket.
  • Nearly everyone in Azumanga Daioh does this in at least several points of the series. Worth mentioning is Mr. Kimura, who, in the last episode, spouts a literal waterfall of tears that traces down the contours of his suit.
  • Randou Rino of Best Student Council does this often, usually while glomping her friend Ayumu.
  • The title character in Sailor Moon.
  • Keitarô is well known for this in Love Hina, at the drop of a hat, of the cascading sheets variety, with at least one of firehose-like streams. Shinobu comes in second for frequency.
    • Ken Akamatsu almost always depicts himself in this fashion in illustrations.
  • Occurs occasionally in the 2003 anime version of Fullmetal Alchemist, even to Alphonse, who has no tear ducts. Or eyes, for that matter. Especially gets ridiculous when he questions moments where Ed won't cry for him when they're both in despair.
    • In the 25th episode of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, May Chang is anxious about her pet Panda after she and it are separated during an intense fight with the enraged homunculus, Gluttony. In one scene, she actually cries a jet of tears which almost puts out the burning coals she used to warm herself.
  • Frequently in Ouran High School Host Club, both anime & manga, by Tamaki (almost every other frame) and the Hitachiins in response to any example of Haruhi's "cuteness". Honey also, for Moe points.
  • Naruto
    • Rock Lee and his sensei Might Gai are notorious for the waterfall-of-tears look.
    • Naruto and Inari perform some Ocular Gushing when they say goodbye to each other at the end of the Land of Waves arc despite being determined not to.
  • Sasami in the Pretty Sammy series on occasion.
  • One Piece tends to use the cascading water effect when characters are extremely upset. Oddly enough, it uses a somewhat subdued version for dramatic effect.
  • Every human who's freed from a Zonder Core in Gao Gai Gar has these. Makes sense, since being purified appears to relieve whatever stress led to them being a Zonder target in the first place.
  • Practically everybody in Lucky Star fall into this trope at the drop of a hat.
  • Virtually everyone in Elfen Lied, at least while they are not violently disemboweling someone. Considering what happens to everyone throughout the story it's not surprising.
  • Pokémon
    • This happens occasionally with the Team Rocket trio whenever they witness the Pokémon they're supposed to catch face hardship or do something emotionally significant, such as when Pikachu almost agreed to evolve into a Raichu with the Thunderstone in hopes of winning against Gym Leader L.T. Surge's Raichu.
    • This is a Running Gag for Ash's Torkoal.
    • One of Pikachu's cuter moments was after its ketchup bottle got slashed open by a Scyther. The next scene showed it doing this, holding the open bottle.
    • Cute crybaby Ash tends to do this a lot in the early seasons.
  • Saikano has this happen to most characters dozens of times in every chapter. No-one is resistant to this trope. The most notable gusher is actually the robot girl/"Ultimate Weapon" Chise, who seems to cry even when she's simply surprised.
  • At one point in Fairy Tail, local water mage Juvia starts crying and nearly drowns several mages around her.
  • Bleach
    • The administrator at Ichigo's school, who called several students in anime episode 11 to berate them for their misbehavior at Don Kanonji's TV show filming in episode 10.
    • Kon and several of Ichigo's male student friends (especially Keigo) have done this repeatedly.
  • Hanaukyo Maid Tai. Chief Technology maid Ikuyo Suzuki is prone to these. Taro does it in episode 13 and 14 and La Vérité episode 7.
  • Axis Powers Hetalia
    • Italy pulls this off several times, with tears literally spraying out in all directions. Notably in episodes 3 and 8, when he is faced with Germany, and England's cooking respectively.
    • Ukraine's tears.
  • In The World God Only Knows Keima at one point claims he's not crying, he's enjoying a hot spring! Complete with Keima suddenly being in a small hot spring filled by his tears. Which other characters apparently see and comment upon. Unless he really made one instantly...
  • FLCL. During the final episode "FLClimax", Commander Amarao has one of these during the final confrontation between Atomsk!Naota and Haruko.

Films -- Animation[edit | hide]

  • Almost every Hayao Miyazaki film has at least one instance where a character will cry massive gobs of tears the size of golf balls.
  • The Lion King
    • Timon and Pumbaa. At any slightly emotional moment.
    • In the sequel, Simba's Pride, they cried at the marriage festival between Kiari and Kovu until they drenched a disgruntled Zazu.


Literature[edit | hide]

  • Happens in The Legend of Rah and the Muggles when the title character's brother sails away with a band of miscreants, to the extent that a flood is triggered that swamps the boats. Intended as a Tear Jerker, came out as just Narm.
  • Alice in Wonderland has a chapter called "The Pool of Tears". When Alice becomes a giant after eating the cookies marked "Eat Me", she starts crying piteously, flooding the room with her tears. When she drinks from the bottle marked "Drink Me", she shrinks so small that she nearly drowns in the pool of tears she shed as a giant.


Music[edit | hide]

  • Absolutely (Story of a Girl) by Nine Days, "This is the story of a girl/who cried a river and drowned the whole world."


Myths & Religion[edit | hide]

  • In The Bible, the prophet Jeremiah wants this, saying, "Oh that my head were waters, and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people!" (Jeremiah 9:1) Both his books (Jeremiah and Lamentations) are somewhat depressing.


Theater[edit | hide]

  • This seems to be based on a Japanese bunraku puppet technique used to show mourning, in which ribbons would flow from the eyes. It was also used in the musical version of The Lion King.


Video Games[edit | hide]

  • Super Princess Peach, where this is an ability. To clarify, its main use is to let you run really fast, but you can water buds that grow into gigantic vines with your tears. Without any negative effects from all the salt in those tears!
  • Also, Peach does the full-on Fire Hydrant Wail after the recounting of Sonic's tragic Backstory in Super Mario Bros Z.
  • Luigi does this often in the Mario & Luigi series.
  • Street Fighter has Dan Hibiki, who has them when happy almost as often as when sad.
  • Rise of Persona 4 does this a lot, but only when it's tears of relief, so it helps lighten the mood. When Teddie started crying like this too, they hugged each other for support... until Teddie tried to cop a feel and Rise decked him.


Visual Novel[edit | hide]


Web Comics[edit | hide]


Web Original[edit | hide]

  • Freddie Wong does a hilarious live-action version of this at the end of the action short "Gun Size Matters" when the mega-hot Action Girl played by Shenae Grimes leaves him for a guy who pulled a 360 No Scope on the last Mook with a Barrett sniper rifle before landing into his car.


Western Animation[edit | hide]

  • Occasionally seen in Pucca and, in the case of Pucca herself, her waterfall tears possess waterfall force which sends anybody she looks at while crying flying away from her. There is actually a moment where Garu walks up to a waterfall looking for Pucca, looks up, and it turns out the waterfall is really Pucca's tears.
  • Codename: Kids Next Door
    • Numbuh Three has broken down crying, complete with Ocular Gushers, more than a few times during the series, usually as a way of working on another character's sympathies.
      • And in Operation C.L.U.E.S. it's revealed that this is a trait she shares with her father, Kani Sanban.
    • Lizzy sometimes indulges in this too, usually to guilt-trip Numbuh One into going out with her.
    • In "Operation: P.O.O.L.", the Mirror Universe counterpart of Father, the series' Big Bad, also did this on one occasion.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants tends to play with this trope a lot, producing such ocular-gushing gems as:
    • SpongeBob spraying Ocular Gushers into a mug, then drinking the contents before spraying again, spraying teardrops like a garden sprinkler, complete with sound-effects, and a few which seem to have the force of a firehose on full blast.
    • On one memorable occasion, SpongeBob cried so hard that the tears flooded his house, and when Squidward opened the front door, the resulting stream of water knocked him over.
    • When his grandma ignored and didn't coddle him because he wanted to be treated as an adult, he eventually snapped and cried until his tears flooded her entire house. Later Grandma pulls a plug on her house's floor to drain the tears away.
    • The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie includes a scene in which SpongeBob and Patrick are spraying streams of water directly into each other's mouths, much to the disgust of Princess Mindy.
    • And in another scene where Mr. Krabs loses his millionth dollar to a giant clam, he cries so much in one scene he literally forms faucets from his eyes.
    • Also Pearl. An early episode use the waterfall example when Pearl approaches her father in tears flooding the Krusty Krab after her prom boyfriend dumped her.
    • Occurrs with Sandy when she cries: her helmet gets all filled up and she pulls the handle to flush her tears.
    • ... and keep in mind that this is all underwater.
  • Eduardo, the highly emotional Gentle Giant from Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends, does this often.
  • Surprisingly, this happened to Batman in an episode of The Super Powers Team: Galactic Guardians when the Scarecrow forces him to have a flashback of his parents' death.
  • The Ren and Stimpy Show. Stimpy cries so hard his EYES POP OUT OF HIS SKULL!
  • Illustrated above: in one episode of My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic, Pinkie Pie is so touched by the reunion of Princess Celestia and her newly reformed sister, her tears form twin waterfalls... until she realizes this is the perfect opportunity for a party, that is.
    • A later episode had Pinkie agreeing to babysit her bosses' twin babies. After spending an entire episode trying to be responsible, it becomes too much for her and she breaks down crying. The animation for this was partially recycled from the other instance mentioned above.
    • Again in The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000 when it looks like the Apples have lost their farm. The sound of her crying was recycled from above.
    • Fluttershy in Ponyville Confidential, when a gossip column claims she has tail extensions.
      • Same episode, on Pinkie Pie again around "Pinkie Pie is an Out of Control Party Animal." Boy she really has issues.
  • The Powerpuff Girls episode "The City Of Frownsville" has Lou Gubrious, a mensch who cries fountains of tears channeling his sadness into a ray set upon Townsville that makes everyone—even the Powerpuff Girls—cry tears to the point where it threatens the city. Upon being the happiest person in Townsville at that point, he changes his name to Hal Larious, only to succumb to tears again after Bubbles (in a vain attempt to make a crying pigeon laugh) drops her banana and Hal slips on it, causing everyone to laugh at him.