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Sometimes, you notice a woman for her chest. Sometimes, you notice her butt. But other times, you take a really long look at how lovely her legs are.
This trope deals with cases where a female character's legs are given special attention. This is in the form of Male Gaze, usually with slow pans up her legs, or her legs are mentioned at some point in the story as being an attractive feature of the woman. This is recurrent in G-rated fiction, where the Male Gaze directed to the legs is used rather than the more sexualized breasts and rear.
Zettai Ryouiki, Showgirl Skirt, Dangerously-Short Skirt, Underwear of Power/Leotards/Mini Dresses Of Power, Qipao, Who Wears Short Shorts? and Footsie Under the Table are also good ways to show off these features. A Kick Chick will almost always have these, as will most female Dance Battlers. The Statuesque Stunner will also have these, more often than not. Bath Kick is used to show these off as well. If the Amazonian Beauty has them, expect either the narration, other characters, or the character design to emphasize her legs' muscularity as attractive, often with special attention to the thighs.
Show Some Leg is not necessarily related, but certainly can be. Sometimes confused for Foot Focus in translations of text-contextual Japanese media, due to "足" (ashi) not differentiating between "leg" and "foot".
Anime and Manga
- Mariah from Jojo's Bizarre Adventure gets many comments from the heroes on her legs.
- Princess Tutu highlights the characters' legs, but it's justified in that they're ballet dancers.
- Venus Wars: The bubbly airhead reporter Susan's legs are a subject of conversation by several male characters, to the point one character suggests she cover them up so the enemy soldiers occupying the city don't pull her over to "search" her. She doesn't have any other attire besides miniskirts for most of the movie, and the epilogue focuses on her mostly from the hips down in cutoff jeans.
- The main characters from Dangaioh (save for the lone male), are all drawn with shapely, long legs which are made all the more prominent because they dress in skintight, revealing
swimsuitsspacesuits all the time.
- In Ichigo Mashimaro, this is one of the things that a drunk Nobue notices about Ana.
- Sailor Moon runs away with this trope as leg shots (courtesy of some very short skirts and risque transformations) seem to come up at least ten times per episode.
- Magic Knight Rayearth also follows the indications of the aforementioned Sailor Moon. Battle scenes and short skirts (and sometimes no skirts) seem to go hand in hand rather often in this anime.
- Kämpfer, along with Zettai Ryouiki for Shizuku and Natsuru.
- In Ai Kora, Maeda lusts after Tsubame-sensei's legs.
- Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha: The Lady of War Signum has incredibly shapely legs. In fact, her combat outfit was specifically designed by her oh-so-Genre Savvy mistress Hayate to show off her legs up to the thighs.
- Mana Fujisaki in Onegai My Melody, an athletic young girl who is openly boastful about the length of her legs (and terrified of cuteness... for some reason). When a rival "steals" her legs (and her friend's breasts, and some other traits) with magic she's naturally aghast.
- Neon Genesis Evangelion: Misato gets a lot of leg focus, especially when exiting a vehicle, as well as many low-angle shots tracking her determined marches down the Geofront's hallways.
- Nouhime, from Sengoku Basara, has a pretty nice, shapely pair of legs, and isn't shy about showing them off. Especially when she starts shooting at you...
- Tamayura: Riho, Fuu's big sister mentor, is often depicted showing off her long legs for some reason, even though the show is pretty much devoid of Fan Service.
- Tomoyo and Kyou from Clannad. The former is very fond of high kicks, and the latter likes to kick too and even has some Grade A Zettai Ryouki.
- Nanako Misonoo from Oniisama e.... The series isn't exactly known for its Fan Service but there's still quite the focus on Nanako's very long and slim legs, like in the first anime episode where she happily twirls around in a fancy dress.
- Ranma ½: Female Ranma's legs are mentioned and given focus from time to time. In the manga, he takes advantage of this by donning a miniskirt in order to attract men to Ukyo's restaurant.
- Shampoo in certain arcs as well.
- Nico Robin of One Piece has notably long legs.
- Boa Hancock's are even longer and on constant display, plus she gets to show them off due to being a Kick Chick.
- Both Makie and Hyakurin from Blade of the Immortal show a lot of their legs, wearing slitted kimonos and mini skirts with Zettai Ryouiki respectively.
- Several characters in Ah! My Goddess have shapely legs, most notably Hagall who's got a Showgirl Skirt to show them off with.
- Suzumiya Haruhi herself, as well as Tsuruya, get a lot of leg focus.
- Asuna in Mahou Sensei Negima, who also happens to be very good at kicking.
- Code Geass: Milly Ashford has hers showcased during a humorous moment when she teases Shirley in season 1.
- In Skip Beat, one of Ren's more frequently commented upon traits are his ridiculously long legs.
- Maya in Seikimatsu Occult Gakuin has a lot of emphasis on her legs, particularly when she's wearing her white dress with a Dangerously-Short Skirt, complete with Zettai Ryouiki.
- In Bleach, Rukia may have smaller boobs compared to other girls, but she 'compensates' via getting lots of focus on her slender and beautiful legs.
- Caitlin Fairchild of Gen 13. This is Lampshaded repeatedly.
- Psylocke. Whilst most X-Women are drawn in a manner that emphasizes their breasts, art of Psylocke focuses on her legs and butt.
- Black Canary in The DCU. Highlighted by her trademark fishnets.
- Ditto for Zatanna, and frequently lampshaded over in The DCAU.
- Goldeneye: Xenia Onatopp and her Murderous Thighs.
- This is parodied in The Naked Gun 3 (which has the up the legs shot repeat itself several times).
- And TWO knees.
- Pretty Woman: Very clearly pointed out by Julia Roberts' character. Important enough that they got a body double for the legs in the film's poster.
- Parodied in Hot Shots. "I had them lengthened. Now they go all the way up."
- Golden Age of Hollywood musicals literally without number. Busby Berkeley, in particular, was devoted to this trope.
- As seen in the page picture, Cyd Charisse had legs all the way up to there.
- In the movie The Graduate, and the poster for it, Mrs. Robinson shows off her legs. The "Mrs. Robinson, you're trying to seduce me" scene has become part of the public imagination through Popcultural Osmosis.
- Little known fact that the legs in question actually belonged to a body double. That body double was Linda Gray.
- Ulla in The Producers definitely counts.
- Tony points this out about Elvira in Scarface.
- Grindhouse spends an exceptional amount of time showing off its female characters' legs, and in the case of Death Proof, the feet as well. This is especially important to Cherry Darling (who gets a rather awesome replacement) and Butterfly.
- Lili von Shtupp in Blazing Saddles, pointed out by Hedley.
- Marlene Dietrich, whom Lili von Shtupp parodies, shows her gams in almost ever movie of hers. Witness for the Prosecution had a special scene written just so Marlene Dietrich could show off her accordion. And her legs, of course.
- Spy Hard: Parodies the trope with a long, long trip up some ridiculously long legs.
- Vicky Vale in the 1989 Batman movie is introduced by showing us her legs sticking out from underneath a newspaper she was reading. Alex Knox comments, "Hello, legs."
- Elvira, Mistress of the Dark:
"If they ever ask about me, tell them I was more than just a great set of boobs. I was also an incredible pair of legs!"
- There was actually a blooper show in the 1970's or early 1980's in which the first segment was replacing Elvira's wax statue at a museum with Elvira herself. A young boy (couldn't have been 10) walks up to the statue, says "Hello, hot stuff!" or something familiar, and feels Elvira's legs up.
- The Executioners: Maggie Cheung's character. Emphasised in her introductory pose.
- At least three-quarters of Kristen Wiig's outfits in Bridesmaids involve very short skirts or dresses displaying her long legs and several lines draw attention to them. (Usually in a more comedic way, but still.)
- Dancer/actress Juliet Prowse rose to prominence because Soviet leader Nikita Kruschev saw her dancing in the 1959 film Can-Can and immediately proclaimed her (her, not the film) "immoral and obscene". As they say, there's no such thing as bad publicity. From there, her career took off.
- A Pimped-Out Dress in That Lady in Ermine has a crinoline skirt that has nothing underneath, so that Betty Grable could lift it up and show off her famous legs.
- Julie Newmar was noted for having very nice, long legs, to the point she had them insured for $10 million.
- In Louis Sachar's Dogs Don't Tell Jokes, Gary Boone has an attractive teacher named Miss Langley whom he secretly calls "Miss Longlegs". (He accidentally uses the nickname out loud during his comedy routine at the climax of the book, but the audience and Miss Langley take it as a joke.)
- The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul: When Kate exits The Alleged Car, it's noted that she has the kind of legs a film soundtrack editor would feel obliged to put a smoky saxophone solo against.
- For a male example, see the Wheel of Time series. Whenever a female character comments on a male character's attractiveness, it will usually involve admiring his legs, especially the calves.
- Sisterhood series by Fern Michaels: Let's see. Lizzie Fox has them, Alexis Thorne has them, and Isabelle Flanders has them. There might be more, but those three are definitely noted for this trope.
Live Action Television
- Richard Diamond: In the 1950s detective show, Diamond's answering service lady Sam (played by Mary Tyler Moore) was only seen from the legs down. When she posed for a magazine spread - fully clothed, but allowing viewers to put a face to the legs - she was fired and Roxanne Brooks replaced her.
- Sally on 3rd Rock from the Sun. Subverted in that Dick et al. say they're a failing of hers along with her perky breasts and long flowing locks, and she agrees. Then Mary tries to cheer her up after a breakup by saying that she's got legs -- and Sally cuts her off, saying "You don't have to rub it in!" It is presumably because Sally is implied to be a rather macho male of the species early in the series.
- Her boyfriend, Don, defends his choice to date her with "Alright, so she's crazy. But she's got legs up to her face!"
- Doctor Who: Amy Pond. Her actress, Karen Gillan, knows she has legs fit for this trope; it was her decision to stick to short skirts over wearing trousers most of the time to play up the Fan Service.
- In The Jeff Foxworthy Show, we get one episode in which the girls — Karen, Jeff's pregnant wife; DeeDee, Wayne's girlfriend and former Louisiana stripper, and Gale, Karen's eternally depressed sister — have a girls' night where they put on make-up and dress up. The viewers see Karen hide behind a wall and shows nothing but leg in a way that shows she retains extreme flexibility despite pregnancy. Even Hollywood Homely Gale is shown to have some attractive legs. As for DeeDee, she can be summed up by stripper music playing when she appears.
- Cerie from Thirty Rock: Her office attire, which usually includes a tiny denim miniskirt, is used for comedic effect as well as Fan Service. The leggy outfits are a distraction to the male characters on the show, and Liz has confronted Cerie about her wardrobe to no avail.
- Also alluded to in the character's short-lived web series.
- Shannon from Lost wears an assortment of shorts, skirts and bikinis, and was nicknamed "Sticks" by Sawyer because of her long legs.
- Entertainment Tonight hostess Mary Hart had a special "leg light" under the anchor desk just to show hers off... and, as with many of the Real Life examples, hers were insured.
- While she was hosting alongside Regis Philbin on what became Live With Kelly, Kathie Lee Gifford was well-known for displaying hers ("down there").
- Keeping Up Appearances: Despite being in her fifties, Mary Millar who played Rose had an amazing set of legs. Many of the characters even commented on them, with Emmett in particular calling her: "The one with the friendly legs."
- Despite his Fan Nickname of "Lil' Stumpy", Dean Winchester of Supernatural has had a slow pan up his legs at least twice.
- The West Wing: "I have wit, I have charm, I have brains, I have legs that go all the way down to the floor, my friend."
- Marcia Gay Harden's character on Damages spends a fair amount of time leisurely putting on her stockings after trysts with different men.
- Gossip Girl's Serena van der Woodsen, in keeping with her status on the show, possesses such things and is fully aware of how to utilise them.
- Glee's Rachel Berry. You'd figure at 5'2" they wouldn't be that impressive.
- Castle: Katherine Beckett does show those legs of hers several times. And aren't we fans glad of it.
- Kratts' Creatures: Allison Baldwin, whenever she wears shorts.
- Lady Gaga seems to like to show them off in her videos.
- Flogging Molly, "Devil's Dance Floor":
Her legs ran all the way
Up to heaven and past Avalon.
- Zebrahead: "With Legs Like That"
- We absolutely must mention ZZ Top's "Legs", which is of course both the Trope Namer and the source of the page quote.
- Van Halen's "Drop Dead Legs".
- The Smithereens: "Behind The Wall Of Sleep".
She had hair like Jeannie Shrimpton back in 1965
She had legs that never ended
I was halfway paralyzed.
- "Leggy Blonde" by Flight of the Conchords.
- "Hot Legs" by Rod Stewart.
- Former WCW/WWE employee Stacy Keibler was notable for having legs that took up half her height. She would rely on them in the ring as well, using them to choke other Divas by pinning them against the turnbuckle by the throat. In fact, one of her theme songs was a cover of ZZ Top's "Legs" sung by Kid Rock.
What Could Have Been: "With Legs Like That" was originally intended for Stacy, but since she had left the company by then the theme was instead given to Maria. Stacy's legs were a favorite thing for the Dancing With the Stars judges to praise, since it obviously gave her an advantage in dancing. Well, that and all the years of jazz, tap and ballet training she had, which was arguably how she got those legs to begin with.
- Michelle McCool after her Face Heel Turn showed what she'd been hiding under all the tomboy ring attire. Once the Lay Cool gimmick started off, her legs were on show practically every episode of Smackdown. Layla too since they wore matching outfits a lot of the time.
- There was actually a gimmick match called a "Legs Match" when Gibbons and Hill of ZZ Top themselves hosted Raw. It was just a regular wrestling match but the four ladies involved had to wrestle in short shorts. Two of the divas in it already wrestled in hotpants anyway, but that's beside the point.
- And the ring announcer for that match? Lilian Garcia. 'Nuff said.
- In City of Angels, the Private Eye Monologue's description of Alaura says that "only the floor kept her legs from going on forever." A later scene has her on a chaise longue with her stepson Peter oiling her bare legs.
- Street Fighter
- Tifa, in addition to being the poster girl for Boobs of Steel, is this. In one of the many, many (many, many...) Final Fantasy VII spin-offs, the guy who runs the bar she works at says he's looking for a new bartender -- "With big breasts and long legs!" he exclaims. Guess who he hires?
- Rikku from Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy X 2 also. In every game she appears in she is introduced by a long, loving pan up her very long legs. She seems to flaunt it, too, as she dresses in miniskirts and hotpants wherever she goes, including battle.
- Vanille from Final Fantasy XIII (notice a pattern forming?) who is also not shy about it. She actually wears a skirt shorter than Rikku and her promotional pictures feature her stretching out her legs.
- Lightning is no slouch either. The cover of the game features Her showing a lot of leg.
- In Jade Empire, if you have Dawn Star in your party when you first meet Black Whirlwind, Whirlwind will make some comments on Dawn Star's legs. Her response? "Would you like to see the damage these legs can inflict firsthand?"
- Rival Schools: School nurse and fellow Kick Chick Kyoko Minazuki from the games. She wears a short skirt that shows them off.
- Quite a few outfits in the Dead or Alive games are designed specifically to shows off female fighters' legs, notably Lei Fang and Kasumi's default outfits. Special mention goes out to Kokoro's kimono in Dimensions, which is technically worn incorrectly just to reveal her legs more often, although this could just be for ease of movement. I doubt players care much.
- In Back to the Future: The Game, according to Kid Tannen, Edna Strickland has some nice gams - though we never get to see for ourselves, as she's always wearing a long skirt that goes down to her ankles.
- Lara Croft, considering that most of the time, during gameplay at least, she's facing away from the player and wearing very short shorts.
- The novels indicate that this is what Jim Raynor was thinking about Sarah Kerrigan during the "I finished scouting the area and--you pig!" scene in Starcraft. The player can't actually tell, considering she's a low-detail sprite, but promo shots for the Vapor Wear Third-Person Shooter Starcraft: Ghost indicate that Ghost uniforms are practically painted on.
- Grunty in Banjo-Kazooie's Game Over screen.
- The Stinger for Super Mario Galaxy actually showed a brief glimpse of Rosalina's legs underneath her dress.
- Blaz Blue: Aside of her boobs, Litchi Faye-Ling also possesses long, slim legs which due to how she dressed (not really wearing pants and wears a Qipao) and her attacks involve a lot of kicking as well as stretching her legs out. One of the special picture arts in the game also gave a comment in vein of this ("While Litchi is more known for her boobs, she also possesses long, luscious legs")
- Bayonetta is unmatched in the realm of video game women everywhere at 12 heads tall.
- An unnamed character in Lackadaisy Cats was remarked upon as having "gams up to your eyeballs!" This case was a joke panel, meant to demonstrate one character's unfamiliarity with the slang of the era, but considering all that is ever shown of the girl is her legs.
- Cheesecake, of the Global Guardians PBEM Universe, has the power of hot legs, and she uses it to mentally manipulate weak-willed men.
- Tennyo, of the Whateley Universe, has been described several times as having disproportionately long legs given her 5'3" height.
- The Nostalgia Critic is dressed as Link in Suburban Knights. The fact that he's wearing a short tunic with no pants or tights gets a lot of attention from the camera, although Doug said later he was in so much pain from the cold that it wasn't worth it.
- Jessica Rabbit from Who Framed Roger Rabbit? is another long-legged Disney redhead. Showcased in her brief cameo as a park ranger in the short Trail Mix-Up.
- Marge in The Simpsons, when she and Homer get "frisky". This is explicitly mentioned by Lenny in one episode.
"She's got legs from here to yah-yah!"
- Hello Nurse from Animaniacs, as noted during her eponymous musical number:
"...she's got legs, like Astaire..."
- On an episode of American Dragon Jake Long, Jake's sassy black friend becomes a cheerleader. When her friends see her in a revealing miniskirt for the first time this is their reaction. One of them goes on to talk about her legs for a while afterward, questioning why she never showed off her legs before.
- In The Great Mouse Detective Miss Kitty has quite a pair.
- Superman: The Animated Series gives us Mercy Graves, Lex Luthor's bodyguard/chauffeur. She wears a ridiculously short dress (or a tight shirt with tight pants) that shows off her legs.
- The Filmation animated TV series of the 1970s and 1980s were loaded with female characters often depicted wearing mini-skirts and swimsuit-like outfits designed to show off their legs. Shows featuring characters with this particular "superpower" (just a few of many): Flash Gordon, She-Ra Princess of Power, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (not to mention both the live-action and animated versions of Isis featured in various Filmation shows).
- Parodied in a Family Guy Manatee Gag with Peter's great-aunt Legs Go All The Way Up Griffin.
- One scene in Hercules showed Megara running in a way so that she is picking up her dress, revealing a rare shot of her legs being exposed.
- Asajj Ventress and the Nightsisters in general from Star Wars: The Clone Wars.