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The ability to remove one's eye (real or false, magical or mechanical) and use it to view hard-to-see areas during certain situations after placing it somewhere. The eye is not in any way connected to the owner, yet it operates just as well as it was. Apart from the creepiness value, it can also work as a Surveillance Drone.

Compare Detachment Combat, Helping Hands, Losing Your Head.

A Sub-Trope of Faceless Eye. Can be used for Sinister Surveillance. Compare Animal Eye Spy.

Examples of Eye Spy include:

Anime and Manga

  • Gaara in Naruto can make a floating eye out of sand and connect his optic nerve to it to scout around.
  • There's one Noah in D Gray Man who possess this ability, implanting his eye into his victim to spy on them. Thing is, he has more than two eyes...

Comic Books

  • The Emerald Empress, enemy of the Legion of Super-Heroes has a big giant eyeball that floats around and does her bidding. She can see what it sees.

Film - Animation

  • In the Toy Story series, the Potato Heads are often seen holding their eyes above their heads to see, etc., as a gag.
    • Toy Story. He took out his eyes and used them to see over the other toys at the windowsill who were watching Sid destroy his Combat Carl action figure.
    • He did it again in Toy Story 2 to see inside the room where Woody was being held.
    • It becomes a plot point in Toy Story 3, when Mrs. Potato Head loses an eye before leaving Andy's room, and later finds that she can still use it to see Andy's room from under the dresser where she left it.

Film - Live Action

  • Spy in Your Eye
  • The alien does this in Brother From Another Planet.
  • That Beholder-like eyeball creature the heroes encounter in Big Trouble in Little China. "What it sees, Lo Pan knows!"
  • Aughra in The Dark Crystal had this.
  • The Black Queen uses these in Mirror Mask. For added creepiness, they have spider legs.
  • The 3rd sequel to Re-Animator, "Beyond Re-Animator", had this happen to one of the prison junkies who unknowingly injected himself with multiple revival serums belonging to the Mad Doctor Herbert West until he exploded (he reanimated himself) causing one of his eyeballs to pop out of his head. For reasons the movie doesn't explain, the doctor takes the eyeball and keeps it around until at the end of the movie when he discard the eyeball outside the front lawn of the chaos-infested prison, while it struggles to move.

Literature

  • Blind Io from Discworld has dozens of remote eyes.
  • In the Harry Potter series, Mad-Eye Moody's magical eye. Also, it's used by Dolores Umbridge as a spycam.
  • Randall Flagg in The Stand sends his eye to spy on the good guys in one scene.

Live Action TV

  • A Monster of the Week on The X Files was able to order his body parts about to act independently, including his eyes.
  • G'Kar picks up this ability on Babylon 5: after the deranged Centauri emperor gouges his eye out, it is later replaced with an artificial eye that can function even when removed from his eye socket.
  • Aughra from The Dark Crystal has only one eye, but she can remove it from her head and hold it up to get a better look at things.
  • A first season episode of Angel featured a creepy Doctor who could do detach and levitate his eyes, his hands, etc (pretty much take himself apart and put himself back together again at will). He used his powers to stalk eventually try to kill a nice young lady, providing her with some literal Nightmare Fuel moments (like disembodied hands crawling in her bed, up her legs…)

Tabletop Games

  • In Vampire: The Requiem, Belial's Brood has an investment called Flesh Spider that lets the detach body parts but still use them. This includes their eyes.
  • In Shadowrun you have the option to replace one (or both) of your eyes with a Lone Star iBall. They are like normal cybereyes, until you take it out. Then they act as recon drones, which can roll around on the floor.

Video Games

  • Ever Quest has the ability with some spells, an item, and a monk disciple to send out an eye to investigate for you.
  • The Eye of Kilrogg spell in Warcraft 2 summons a floating eye that works like this.
  • In Blood II, when Caleb picks up an eye, he can use this way.

Web Comics

  • Schlock from Schlock Mercenary can move his eyes to any point of his amorphous body and has used this to spy around corners and in other tactical situations.
  • Golgo (aka Angel Eye) from Rice Boy has a mechanical eye that's capable of functioning autonomously, acting as a flying video camera. He prefers it over his biological eye, referring to the mechanical one as "my good eye" at one point.
  • Pages of the all-seeing lexicon in Bibliography.

Western Animation

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