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Character flies in front of a full moon, making a silhouette. Popularized by ET the Extraterrestrial, almost to the point where it has become a Stock Shout Out.

Since this often requires the moon to be large enough for a silhouette, this trope tends to coincide with Weird Moon. (It can be done without such trickery, provided you set the camera up a long way from the foreground object and use a powerful telephoto/zoom lens.)

Examples of Full-Moon Silhouette include:

Anime and Manga

  • Sailor Moon, of course, does this a lot.
  • Sakura does it at the end of the Cardcaptor Sakura's first episode after activating the Fly card. Tomoyo happened to be testing her video camera on the moon at the time. Oops.
  • Setsuna near the end of the Kyoto Arc in Mahou Sensei Negima, after she rescues Konoka from the clutches of the enemy via Wing Pull.
    • Eva has one at the beginning of the Mahora Blackout Operation.
  • Wolf's Rain: Some of the running wolf animation loops in the closing credits have a full moon background. In later episodes the moon turns blood-red.
  • Eureka Seven has one of these (picture). It's treated a bit more seriously than most other instances of this trope.]]
  • Shugo Chara where the Tsukiyomi siblings are so awesome that they can make an auto full moon. Just look at any shots of Utau nightsinging, and you'll see this trope. Ikuto has it less so, but if you see him at night he'll have the moon behind him.
  • In One Piece, during the Drum Island arc of the Baroque Works saga, this occurs with the Straw Hat Pirates when they are hastily departing Drum Island in Dr. Kureha's sleigh, with Chopper hauling the sleigh and the Straw Hats piled up in the sleigh hanging on for dear life.

Comic Books


  • ET the Extraterrestrial: Trope Codifier at the very least; this is the iconic shot of the film, as seen in the page image.
  • Many Christmas movies feature an ending scene where a silhouette of Santa Claus and his reindeer traveling away can be seen in the front of the moon.
  • The Naked Gun
  • Last Action Hero, with Danny on a bicycle no less.
  • The Tall Guy, starring Jeff Goldblum - dancing in front of the moon in a rabbit costume.
  • Spy Hard, combining it with a Speed parody by having the bus travel in front of the moon during its jump.
  • Batman does it in the Batplane during the 1989 movie.
  • Kiryu in the film Godzilla against Mechagodzilla makes one of these as he flies down to Tokyo to battle Godzilla.
  • The last view of Kehaar in Watership Down shows him flying away toward the rising moon, and banking back and forth in front of it.
  • Not shown in the film, but posters for Arachnophobia depict a spider hanging on a silk thread in front of a full moon.


  • Happens at least twice in the X Wing Series, involving Star Destroyers (and obviously not with our moon).
  • In the famous scene from The Hound Of The Baskervilles, Watson and Henry Baskerville notice a Full-Moon Silhouette of a man watching them from the top of a granite pillar. It was Holmes.

Live Action TV

  • Similar to the aforementioned Film example, many Christmas Episodes and Christmas Specials of various shows feature an ending scene where a silhouette of Santa Claus and his reindeer traveling away can be seen in the front of the moon.
  • In one scene of Top Gear's Botswana special, the three presenters' heads appear in silhouette against a rising red moon (red because of all the dust stirred up by their day trip across the Makgadikgadi Pan -- one of the world's largest salt flats).
  • Eureka's season four Christmas Episode gave us Santa's sleigh being silhouetted against the full moon.
  • Kamen Rider Fourze has one right in the opening. Given the show's space thematic it was pretty dang predictable.

Music Videos

Video Games

  • The original Mortal Kombat would feature randomly-selected silhouettes flying over the moon at seemingly random matches set in the Pit (actually determined using some complicated algorithm). This was a signal to the player that this particular match could unlock a fight against Reptile.

Western Animation

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