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There are characters who have wings or use substitutes in different ways like using gigantic ears or magical hair. But then we have characters who have grown or were born with actual tiny wings attached to both sides of their heads, or on their feet. It's Fridge Logic to consider how they can even fly in the first place.
Characters who were not born with or have grown wings often use helmets, hats and sandals with wings to achieve this effect. Characters who have neither winged accessories nor wings will have wings on their headgear or costume for ornamental reasons.
The Trope Maker for these wings, is Hermes/Mercury, the messenger of the gods. Because of this, many characters that have worn the winged helmet or winged sandals that are reminiscent to the ones he wore. They also tend to be quite swift in their movements.
This is a form of Good Wings, Evil Wings, as almost any character that has these wings are good or divine.
- The Nothing (or alternatively, The Hope Card) from the second movie of Cardcaptor Sakura has wings on its head.
- In Shugo Chara, wings appear next to Amu's feet during character changes with Ran.
- Nanoha's Flier Fin and its upgraded version, Axel Fin.
- They're merely decorative, but The Flash has wingtips on the head of his costume.
- The Golden Age Flash actually had a hat with such wings on it, a clear homage to Mercury.
- Captain America has small wings on both sides of his mask, much like the Flash.
- In the Marvel Universe, Sub-Mariner has small wings on his ankles that allow him to fly.
- This is also true of his Distaff Counterparts, Namorita and Namora.
- Asterix's helmet has decorative wings, as do those of some other Gauls.
- The Mighty Thor also wears a winged helmet.
- The Spirit of the Post in Going Postal is a golden statue with a winged helmet, winged sandals and a winged fig leaf. Moist, as Postmaster and possible avatar, gets a gold postman's hat with real pigeon wings attached to it, and a matching pair of boots. (There's also some kind of elasticated arrangement, but he decides to forgo this.)
- Hermes/Mercury of course. The winged sandals (named Talaria) were made by Hephaestus/Vulcan, made of gold, and were the source of Hermes power of swift flight. Thus it's natural for speedster type characters to homage Hermes, or his gear, in their design.
- Jack Flash, a campy 1950s strip in the British comic The Beano, was about a boy from Mercury who could fly. He had little wings on his ankles.
- The Dungeons and Dragons supplement Unearthed Arcana (1985) introduced the magic item Winged Boots. When the wearer concentrates on the desire to fly, the boots sprout wings at the heel and allow the wearer to fly for a total of two hours per day.
- Super Mario 64 has Mario's wing cap, which allows him to fly.
- In Scribblenauts, one of the many ways you can make Maxwell fly is to write winged sandals. You could also write winged helmet but it doesn't fly.
- Winona, the flying type gym leader from Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire, has tufts of hair that are shaped like wings that stick out of her aviator helmet and goggles. It is for stylistic purposes only, though.
- The heroine of Valkyrie No Densetsu and, by extension due to The Cameo, Cassandra's third outfit in Soul Calibur 2 have ornamental wings (which are later obtainable as parts for creating a character in the third and fourth games).
- Harpuia from Mega Man Zero wears a winged helmet (purely for decor) along with having thruster containing mechanical wings on his back. Very fast moving when airborne to the point where he is one of the only things in the series that can actually outrun Zero (and Zero's quite fast himself). This is an Anti-Villain or Hero Antagonist example, if not both.
- All of the members of the High Entia race in Xenoblade Chronicles have large white wings on their heads though the ones that are part Homs usually have smaller wings. A random, easily missable NPC mentions that while they can be used for flight, few of them bother to learn how due to the amount of training it requires, making one such display during a sidequest all the more sudden.
- The Blue Birds in Angry Birds in Space.
- Gaia Online has a few of these for items. The headwings and the feetwings are, naturally, separate items that must be purchased separately.
- Twister from Rocket Power has the ornamental version of these wings on his helmet.
- Bosworth the dog in Alias the Jester has wings sprouting from his head that let him fly. It's not clear whether Alias himself wears a winged mask or a mask with holes in it for his wings, but he can fly as well. (When he's Jester, his wings would be covered by his jester's hat.)
- In one of the Rudy Larriva Wile E Coyote and The Road Runner cartoons, Wile E. ties pigeons on his feet to catch the Roadrunner, inspired by the Mercury myth. Like all of his plans, it doesn't go well.