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What exactly are those supposed to protect?

"What is the purpose of the goggles?"

A character wears goggles or other eyewear, despite the fact that they don't have an actual use. In many cases, they'll wear them above their eyes (see picture) like some weird hat.

Unused articles such as this often make up the Rummage Sale Reject. Goggles are popular, because they look cool. If you can actually get something out of them besides protection, then it's probably because your Goggles Do Something Unusual.

If a character has a logical reason to be wearing goggles, like pilot with aviator goggles, it doesn't count as this trope, even if he never actually gets to use them.

See also Purely Aesthetic Glasses. Subtrope of Useless Accessory.

Examples of Goggles Do Nothing include:

Anime and Manga

  • Basque Ohm from Gundam0083 and Zeta Gundam literally wears goggles that seem to serve no purpose. However, it's possible that they cover an injury of some sort as it was hinted he was tortured by Zeon during the One Year War.
  • During the Hades arc of Angel Sanctuary, Katou wears goggles around his neck for no good reason, other than Rule of Cool.
  • Parodied in Bobobobo Bobobo. Bubble-uba, a minor villain, wears three pairs of goggles on his forehead, and has an extra-large pair wrapped around his waist.
  • In one of the Death Note Relight specials a shinigami, possibly Light Yagami, is seen (pictured above) with goggles when he doesn't even have any eyes!
    • Matt, a frequent gamer, also wears goggles at all times. Though they might be worn to protect his eyes from glazing. Or maybe he's cosplaying Raz from Psychonauts.
  • In Digimon, it borders on a Running Gag that the lead character always wears goggles. It started with Taichi ("Tai") (Adventure), then Daisuke ("Davis") actually started wearing Taichi's original goggles (Adventure 02), then Takato wears them because he watched a different version of Digimon on television (Tamers). Then there's Takuya (Frontier), Taiki (Xros Wars), Tagiru (Xros Wars II), Tsurugi (Next), and Hikaru (D-Cyber). Strangely, the very first guy to wear goggles(another guy named Taichi in V-Tamer 01) actually got them as a gift from a pilot and used them for that very purpose.
    • Davis/Daisuke's Image Song is actually called "Goggle Boy," and he has an audio drama track called "Goggles."
      • He does say that he wore them specifically because Tai/Taichi did, so it's kind of a Goggles Do Something Unusual Because They Do Unusual Things For My Role Model.
    • In several instances, the characters do actually use them. The problem is that nobody else seems to ever be bothered by whatever condition prompts the current goggle boy to wear them.
      • Tamers subverts this. Takato's goggles come in handy in a digital field, among other places; the other two members of the Power Trio have sunglasses which they use in the same situations.
    • Well, every lead character aside from Masaru. But that's probably because he's too manly for them.
  • Izumi from Kujibiki Unbalance.
  • Yuuno's side-pouch in Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, which we never see him use. Some Fan Web Comics (Omake (?)) have made speculations on what he places in there. Arnage actually has redundant goggles.
  • In the early design stages for Naruto, the titular character was also supposed to wear a pair of useless goggles. However, the artist found goggles too hard to draw, and so replaced it with a headband after the first few issues. Attention is called to it, as one of Naruto's mentors notes he's wearing the goggles as a replacement for the Hachimaki actual ninja wear; it's taken as a sign of his immaturity.
    • In the original one-shot, the goggles weren't useless; he wears them when riding his motorcycle. The goggles in the first few chapters of the series proper were a holdover from that one-shot.
    • Averted with Obito who wears goggles properly over his eyes. Likely due to being an Uchiha, he took very good care of his eyes, protecting them from debris with the goggles and using eye drops to moisturize.
    • One chapter briefly features a character named Kosuke who wears goggles, which is weird since he's a toad (albeit a magic one).
    • Masashi Kishimoto once stated in an interview that he drew that red and white tie/whistle thingy on Naruto's left shoulder as a spur of the moment addition.
    • A related note is the tendency for covers and extra art (especially early one) to show the main characters with lots of bizarre and exotic weaponry they never actually use (e.g. Sakura holding giant axes, lots of weird scrolls and knife holsters).
    • Subverted with the Mist Village ninja Ao: he has a pair of paper talismans on his ears which seem to just be decorative, but actually protect the Byakugan eye he has hidden behind his eyepatch.
    • Sasuke's original design dodged this trope. Kishimoto's original plan was for him to wear a kind of talisman necklace (imagine a dogtag with three tags), but he decided against it after realizing that the pendant would be too fussy and complicated to draw every time he had a scene with Sasuke.
    • Every ninja in the series that wears a headband falls under this. The headbands have no practical application whatsoever. These shiny metal attention drawing head accessories are just there to display allegiance to a particular ninja village and sometimes they have sentimental value but that's it.
      • The headbands have been shown on a few occasions deflecting weapons. Not often. Possibly due to lack of head shots. But then again, why would you aim for a target seeing that there was a big metal plate there?
      • but then again, there are several characters who don't wear their headbands on their heads. Some have them as loose belts, as shoulder bands, or even around their necks.
    • Notably averted when it comes to the pouches and holsters worn by shinobi. Characters are often shown withdrawing weapons or supplies from them.
  • Gold in the Pokémon Special the first noticable difference between him and the male PC for the second generation games.
  • Rin-rin in Sister Princess habitually wears a pair of goggles pushed up on top of her head. Given that she's a maker of robots and other technotoys, they may be welding goggles or other similar eye protection, but she's never seen with them actually over her eyes.
  • The protagonist, Simon, in Gurren Lagann averts this trope by actually wearing his goggles to protect his eyes and provide illumination while digging underground tunnels. It is worth mentioning, however, that Simon wears the goggles on his forehead at all times, even when not underground, and even in space. He is also the only one to wear them even though he is by no means the only one who digs tunnels.
    • Kamina is a better example, as he is shown always wearing his Cool Shades. Nevermind that they don't do anything since he's spent a good part of his life underground with no natural light source that he needs them for, but something like that isn't going to stop him.
  • In Tsubasa Reservoir Chronicle, Syaoran's goggles appear useless at first, but then he finds an underwater country and uses them for diving.
    • CLAMP seems to be developing a Nomura-like buckles-and-zipper fetish. Oh, and chains. Can't forget the chains.
  • In early chapters of Chrono Crusade, Rosette wears a pair of goggles over her wimple. She uses them a grand total of once, while she and Chrono are on a plane and attempting to board an enemy's blimp. Chrono wears them, too, but it's the only time he's ever seen with goggles, and he takes his off once they make it in, but Rosette's stay on until she gets her militia outfit.
  • Koga the Jerkass Noble Demon of Inuyasha wears a sheathed sword that he never uses during battle. Lampshaded when he finally draws the thing to whack his way free of a demon's giant clutching hand. When his pair of loyal minions express surprise that he's never used the sword before, Koga admits he doesn't even know how to fight with it?he just took the sword off a corpse to carry because he thought it would make him look cool.
  • Shiba Ganju of Bleach was supposed to have goggles as part of his design, but Kubo lamented that he simply forgot to add them every time he drew the character. However, the goggles do appear on Ganjuu in some color spreads.
    • Renji, meanwhile, likes wearing expensive sunglasses over his forehead tattoos, but are broken easily in fights. He substitutes a bandanna instead.
    • A variation occurs in one of the anime omake: Tousen is seen using binoculars. This would be fine, except TOUSEN IS BLIND.
  • Codename: Sailor V: Sailor V's mask is this. Unlike Sailor Moon's similar mask in the manga it has no point aside from obscuring her face. When she becomes Sailor Venus she continues to wear it offscreen for a bit and during her introduction (probably so viewers/readers know that she and Sailor V are the same person) ditches it once she joins the team and her identity is never revealed due it.
  • Dominikov from Murder Princess. Come to think of it, he kinda resembles a more family-friendly version of the image up top... usually (he's the one on the right).
  • Parodied in One Piece. Zoro was fighting a character whose guns shoot bright flashes to blind his opponents from seeing the bullets. Believing that the goggles should protect his eyes so he can fight properly, he put them on, declaring that they would protect him from the flashes...then his opponent calmly pointed out that the goggles had no shades, rendering them useless for this fight.
    • Captain Eustass Kidd however wears raised goggles as part of his normal fashion.
  • Quatre Raberba Winner of Gundam Wing has a pair of goggles. The practical way to use them would be for crossing the desert - the only time he does wear them is inside his Gundam.
    • Quatre's goggles are more for sentimental value; the prequel novel Episode Zero shows that they belonged to Rashid, leader of the Maganac Corps, and mark the young man as one of them, which makes the Maganacs the first real friends he ever had.
  • Gadgeteer Genius Heihachi of Samurai 7 always wears a "pilot's helmet" on his head, which has goggles on it, which he never has over his eyes (which are always closed anyway).
    • He's shown actually wearing the goggles in one episode during a heavy rain storm. It still doesn't explain the pilot's hat though.
  • In Weiss Kreuz, both Ken and Omi wear goggles as part of their mission clothes. Possibly averted since they both ride motorcycles, though that doesn't explain their constant presence.
    • Averted in the last episode (and lampshaded in the accompanying outtakes for this and an earlier episode), when Omi actually uses his to see the infrared beams.

  Omi: Finally a use for these goggles I've been wearing for 24 episodes.

    • Played straight with the nonsensical orange jacket Ken wears around his waist as well.
  • In Bakemonogatari, Oshino Shinobu wears a motorcycle helmet and goggles, despite appearing to be maybe six or eight years old and spending most of her time sitting around in the shade.
  • Canada from Axis Powers Hetalia sports a pair of goggles on his head in a few illustrations of his military uniform. Oddly enough, his brother America is the one who wears a uniform resembling that of a pilot, but only is drawn with goggles once or twice.
    • Considering Canada's WW 2 role as the airplane manufacturing/flight training center for most of the British Empire and the fact that his uniform seems to include a parachute, he's probably a bombardier or navigator, so the goggles aren't totally superfluous.

Card Games

  • Chandra, a Planeswalker in Magic: The Gathering, wears a pair of goggles on her brow.
    • As did Jaya Ballard, whom Chandra is arguably an Expy of.
      • Since both of them derive great pleasure from killing things with fire and blowing stuff up, it's easy to see why they might be useful. Too bad we never see them actually being used!
      • Going by flavor text, the reason appears to be that before becoming a Planeswalker, Chandra was trained in pyromancy by Jaya. So either it's Jaya's goggles passed down, she wanted to look like her teacher or she was simply told that goggles are a good thing when Playing with Fire.
      • Although you never SEE her wear them, in the Webcomic series her face is covered in soot and ash, except for the goggle marks around her eyes. So conceivably, they actually DO do something.

Comic Books

  • Zoe Jump from Warren Ellis' Black Summer limited series wears goggles. Justified because her eyes are actually artificial implants that give her superspeed (it's a quantum physics thing)
  • Retro Girl of Powers used aviator goggles when flying, for some reason, despite being a level nine "We as a species just pray to dear God they're good folks" power.
    • Just because you're invulnerable doesn't mean it's not annoying/disgusting to get bugs in your eyes during high-speed flight.
  • Bob Burden's Flaming Carrot wears flippers all the time, in case he needs to swim.
  • Will Feral in Kingdom wears an aviator's hat and matching goggles for no particular reason. Dingo Star's shoulder pads and pouches might also count.
  • Indirect example: Hellboy does not wear goggles. However, the fact that the filed-down horn stumps on his forehead were mistaken for goggles by many early fans goes to show how ubiquitous the "goggles as fashion accessory" idea is. Even Guillermo del Toro, the director of the movies, thought they were goggles.
  • Averted in Garth Ennis's The Boys. One of the team's resident sociopathic anti-heroes, The Frenchman, initially appears to wear a pair of basic goggles on his bald head for purely aesthetic reasons. However, when he enters combat and draws them on to his eyes, their utility is quickly demonstrated as he rips his opponents apart like wet tissue paper and is immediately covered in viscera.
  • Averted in Starman, where the hero's goggles protect his eyes from the light of his own weapon.
  • Hay Lin in WITCH likes to wear a pair of goggles just above her forehead.
  • Jenny Everywhere.

Fan Fiction

  • Adelleh in the Tales series of Looking for Group fanfiction is a crazy zombie priestess who wears green goggles for no apparent reason (then again much of what Adelleh does has no apparent reason), despite them being somewhat out of place in a medieval fantasy setting. Nobody knows why she wears them, but they've become her signature costume item.


  • In the recent masterpiece by F. Bondarchuk Inhabited island the gear of an alien guardsman includes fa-abulous pink (!) ski goggles. They almost never put them on, even during shooting practice, obstacle courses (with fire barriers) and actual combat raids against insurgents.
  • In Alien Vs Predator's director's commentary, the director said that originally only one character was to wear goggles on his head. The other cast members thought it looked cool, so they all wore goggles on their head... which meant they had to be fogged up so they wouldn't reflect the cameras.
    • In Alien 3, a prisoner has special rape goggles, which makes no sense, unless you employ a bit of Fridge Horror and realize that things get wet and splashy.
  • In Top Gun, the bad guys wore their visors at all times while flying, while the good guys never did.
  • A character in Can't Hardly Wait wears goggles on his forehead. They are actual swimmer's goggles. He never goes swimming.
  • In the Terminator film series, the T-800 is often shown wearing dark sunglasses for no apparent reason at all, except for in the first film when he used it to cover up the fact that he was missing an eye.
    • By this time, the first T-800 was known as a cop-killer who escaped justice. No better way to have your charge recognize you than to adopt the same look.
    • Well, he was riding a motorcycle for much of the second movie, and he loses them when he goes to rescue Sarah Connor. The third movie definitely fits this trope, though, when he takes a pair of Camp Gay sunglasses and crushes them in favor of a pair of Raybans.
  • Although the thermal goggles in Hollow Man actually do something quite important for the film's plot, a possibly unintentional Shout-Out occurs when the room fills with steam, prompting a character to declare "The goggles are worthless!"
  • Subverted in Pitch Black, as Riddick's night vision makes his eyes sensitive to normal light. Played straight by Jack, as he (she) wears a fake pair in order to imitate Riddick.

Live Action TV

  • In the new version of Battlestar Galactica, the Colonial Marines wear goggles on the top of their helmets, but they're very rarely actually worn and their exact purpose is never explained.
  • Mason's death in Dead Like Me. He was searching for the ultimate high and put a drill into his brain. He wore safety goggles.
  • The trope name is said verbatim by Topher in a Dollhouse deleted scene where he tries on some goggles that are meant to go with his interactive computer screen.


  • Doctor Steel was never seen without his goggles, regardless of his attire. Somewhat justified, as he was a roboticist and was seen in one video welding.
  • Rabbit of Steam Powered Giraffe wears steampunk-style goggles on his hat.


  • An example from toys (and the associated comic/cartoon/etc): The G.I. Joe enemy troops called Vipers have a wraparound helmet with opaque facemask ... and goggles atop the helmet!

Video Games

  • In Borderlands, Patricia Tannis, an archaeologist, constantly wears aviator goggles. Yeah.
    • In a wasteland with, as shown in some areas, lots of blowing dust. She's encountered indoors, though, so has no need to keep them down - unlike a lot of the outdoor NPCs (who take great care to keep wrapped up, for the most part, against the elements, including goggles).
  • In Psychonauts, Raz lowers his goggles over his eyes before entering a person's mind... for no apparent purpose. In "The Milkman Conspiracy," this becomes Lampshaded by the interrogative Men In Black: "Who are you?" "Who is the Milkman?" "What is the purpose of the goggles?" It's then subverted when the boss threatens to pluck out his eyes:

  Razputin: Ha, you can't! That is the purpose of the goggles.

  • Kingdom of Loathing has an accessory known as beer goggles. The enchantment is "They do Nothing!"
    • Ironically, said enchantment allows them to be pulverised into twinkly powder (as opposed to useless powder). Which means that the fact that they do nothing means they do something. But if they do something, they can't do nothing. But if they don't do nothing, then they can't do that something... ow, my brain.
  • City of Heroes and City of Villains have goggle appearances, including ones always stay on the forehead. Like every other cosmetic choices, there's no gameplay result.
    • Which actually means that every single piece of your equipment, other than any weapon-based powers are an example of this trope. Some good examples would include things like Utility Belts, wings, armor, bandoliers, extra swords/guns, tails, and claws.
  • Weirdly averted in Champions Online, where one of the various upgrade items is a pair of goggles. The text for it reads something like "Actually does something."
  • In the Wario Ware series, Wario wears his goggles when riding his motorcycle but Mona doesn't wear hers on her scooter, her monkey wears even wears his goggles.
  • Oddly enough, in Dragon Quest II both the Prince of Lauraisa and the Prince of Cannock wear goggles as part of their headgear. While this may be justified by the fact both live close to small patches of desert, they're never shown actually using them. (The Princess, meanwhile, doesn't get any goggles of her own.)
  • None of the many goggles in Fallout 3 have a stat bonus other than armor class, and they're both harder to find replacement components and no better as armor than glasses that do have stat bonuses.
    • In addition, some of the costumes and headgear in the game feature goggles. This means that if a player wants he can have one pair on a helmet, one pair around his neck (as part of the costume) and at the same time wearing a pair.
  • In Final Fantasy VI, Goggles are an equippable item, which prevent blindness. Unfortunately, a glitch with the Evasion stat in the game made it so blindness doesn't affect the accuracy of physical attacks as it's supposed to, making the Goggles useless. This was fixed in the remake.
    • Sadly, the goggles aren't actually drawn on your character.
  • In Final Fantasy VII, while Cid never uses his goggles in the intended manner, despite actually being a pilot, they do provide a nice place for him to stick his pack of cigarettes. This was more likely a limitation of the PS 1 graphics, and if they ever remake the game, he'll most likely use them in certain piloting scenes.
  • Rikku from Final Fantasy X wears a pair of goggles in her swimwear. When she takes it off, there's another pair of goggles underneath. She never wears these.
  • Baird from Gears of War has goggles that seem to serve no apparent purpose... but being the squad's self-proclaimed Smart Guy and Mr. Fixit, they would seem to have a potential use for him. Averted in Gears of War 2, as in the part where Delta Squad rides Reavers, he puts the goggles over his eyes, since they are flying.
    • Funnily enough, Baird does wear his goggles properly as part of his 'Mechanic Baird' multiplayer skin. They still don't do anything, but at least it makes sense now.
    • Also, Dom has a gigantic Ka-Bar-esque knife strapped to his chest. Guess when he actually pulls it out?
  • Both titular characters (even though one is an otter-weasel hybrid) in the Jak and Daxter series wear goggles around their heads. In Jak's case this trope is averted: his goggles are useful in the first game for sniping out enemies and Dark Eco crystals using yellow Eco; in the third he wears them while out in the desert.
    • Played straight with Daxter in most games, until he eventually puts them to use while being flung through the air to dismantle planes in The Lost Frontier.
  • In Kingdom Hearts, you really gotta wonder which or even if any of those zippers actually did anything. Zippers on hats? There's a reason many of the game's critics call it "Buckles and Zippers."
    • Also notable is the pair of goggles that Cid and Goofy wear. Though it's possible that Cid may use the goggles while working on Gummi ships, it's hard to imagine what use they would serve for a Captain of the Guard who uses shields as weapons.
  • In Lego Star Wars II, some of the NPCs in the Mos Eisley Cantina and in the Tatooine levels are wearing what appear to be bucket hats with goggles around the crown. This hat can also be chosen in the character builder. These have no effect on gameplay, but boy, do they ever look cool.
  • The protagonist of Persona 3 has an MP 3 player around his neck, with headphones hanging on his chest. Except for the opening cutscene, he never uses them onscreen. Although Fuuka upgrades the headphones at the end of her Social Link, and the upgraded headphones unlock the Scathach persona
    • The player is then referenced in a bit of a Mythology Gag in which lancer and Butt Monkey Yousuke(Voiced by the same voice actor as P3's protagonist) is shown to also be wearing an MP 3 player. He's actually shown wearing them in battle, even tapping his foot (Though not quite in-time to the battle music, sadly.) And shown taking them off post-battle.
  • Lampshaded in Red Alert 3 where one of the allied units (who wear goggles) say when clicked on "The googles! Zey do nothink!".
  • In Sonic Adventure, Dr. Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik wears not only goggles that never leave the top of his head, but also spectacles. So he couldn't wear his goggles even if he wanted to. The only time he actually wears his goggles in in one scene in Sonic Adventure 2, where he dons them for dramatic purposes. Of course, they're back on top of his head in all of the scenes immediately following.
    • Being the Mad Scientist he is, Robotnik probably uses them when welding his Mecha-Mooks together... it's just that we never see him doing it.
  • The Heroes in Sonic Riders wear goggles even before they know they're going to compete in a hoverboard competition, and once they start competing, they never put their goggles over their eyes. This isn't so for the antagonistic Babylon Rogues.
    • Actually, only Sonic has any headgear in the introductory cut scene-- a pair of Cool Shades. The heroes didn't know about the competition in the second scene-- which is where everyone did have the goggles-- but they intended to chase the Rogues, who introduced the Extreme Gear earlier, so high speeds would have been expected by that point (not that they aren't always to be expected in this series). Amusingly, in addition to not being used, their sunglasses/goggles are far too small to actually be worn.
  • There are goggle sprites in the original Sonic the Hedgehog. See them here. They were removed from the game before being programmed to do anything. It's speculated that they were intended to be SCUBA gear.
  • Tales of Hearts's Hisui has a pair of goggles that flip randomly between the top of his head and around his neck. He actually keeps them on in battle and off when out of it, but no particular significance is given for that.
  • Rita, of Tales of Vesperia, has a pair worn on her forehead that do absolutely nothing. She also apparently has a pair of glasses tucked into the collar of her shirt that are never used.
  • Team Fortress 2.
    • The Engineer has goggles, which do nothing gameplay-related.
      • However, the way he looks without googles is so freaky to some that it ascended to Memetic Mutation as the "Staregineer"
    • The Medic received a pair of mad scientist goggles as a hat option in one update. Their description consists of just one word: "NOTHING"
    • Scout now has the Planeswalker Goggles, which are supposed to keep the bugs out of his eyes as he runs, but considering you never see bugs in-game, they really do nothing. (Although wearing them with the Bombing Run makes him look like Raz).
    • Theoretically, goggles/hats/wigs/doo-rags do do something, in a subtle manner: They distinguish newbies/Free-To-Play players (who don't have/can't get hats) from experienced players, help distinguish strangers from friends, and show what other games the player owns if they have a buy-in bonus.
  • The goggles Hwoarang from the Tekken series wears but never puts over his eyes. There is a cutscene in PSP version of Tekken, when Hwoarang is riding his bike... With the goggles still up on his hair.
  • Warcraft III has an ending credit movie, in which Archimonde is 'filming' a movie, complete with several takes. In one take, there's a dragon attack, and while running away, someone says "The goggles! They do nothing!!"
    • One of the new quests in Cataclysm gives a pair of safety goggles. It's pretty obvious what they do.
  • Super Robot Wars' Elzam V. Branstein Ratsel Feinschmecker wears enormous aviator goggles as a Paper-Thin Disguise, in homage to Char Aznable's similar trick with Cool Shades. They're useless because the disguise fools absolutely no one.
  • The main character of Izuna: Legend of the Unemployed Ninja wears a pair of strange triangular goggles that are never used.
  • Dust Man from Mega Man 4 and Plant Man from Mega Man 6 both have Gun arms which are never put to use.
  • Beaux from Atelier Annie wears a pair of goggles on his head that he's never actually seen using as protective eyewear. One of his alchemy requests is for you to make a Glass Sphere to help him repair one of the lenses, which makes one wonder...what exactly does the boy use the goggles for, anyway?
  • The Sims 2 has goggles you can wear on your forehead, but not over your eyes. A lot of user made content involves giving your character other equipment such as weaponry, backpacks, etc. that don't do anything.
  • Okay, so it's not goggles, but Shadow Hearts: Covenant has Yuri, wearing a small satchel on his back (with trailing buckle-straps). While one could argue that's where the millions of random items you collect or buy over the course of the game end up stashed, you never see Yuri use it. Seems he took a few traveling tips from Lara Croft.
  • Soldier of Fortune. The night vision goggles do almost nothing. And enemies can still see you in the darkness without night vision.
    • In Soldier Of Fortune 2, thermal goggles allowed you to see through walls (but were less compatible with sniper rifles).
  • In Halo: Reach, you can personalise your Spartan with various different helmets, shoulder pieces, etc. Despite many of them having obvious bonuses (extra armor, grenades, etc.) all the changes are cosmetic.
  • One of the guys behind Vacant Sky is likely a troper, as there's a tombstone that literally reads:

 RIP Jiroriseth Moss

The goggles did nothing

  • Flak in Advance Wars wears goggles and a helmet. No-one's quite clear on why Flak would need head protection.
    • Also Eagle, who always wears his goggles around his neck. Apparently they're his lucky goggles. He IS a pilot, though.
  • In Nostalgia, Melody's pointy witch hat sports a pair of goggles for some reason. She never wears them.
  • A variant: The Leather Armor in Fable has a dagger in a sheath attached to the sleeve. You can't do anything with it, but it looks cool.
  • Captain Rush of Time Crisis wears a pair of orange goggles around his neck. Being a US Army soldier and all, you'd think they'd come in handy...
  • Inzaghi in Blaze Union and Yggdra Union.
  • Velgas in Gloria Union.


  • The character of Jyrras Gianna from Dan and Mab's Furry Adventures gains goggles in his new outfit, which are never used. Doubly unnecessary, in that he also wears glasses (which he doesn't need but wears for image's sake). He did use goggles during the non-canon spy spoof arc, but their only purpose was to hide his eyes, as villains are not allowed to be 'cute'.
  • Used every which way in Girl Genius, as befits its mad science milieu.
    • Played straight, but also subverted--in a rare case of Did Do The Research Wooster wears goggles and a leather jacket when he's using Gil's open-cockpit flyer and unlike most media, actually LOOKS like he's been in an open-cockpit aircraft (dirty with visible marks where he's had the goggles over his eyes to see.)
  • Parodied (maybe) in Penny Arcade with the character of Charles. Ever since his redesign, he has kept a pair of goggles on his forehead.
  • Hell, Zaraki Yagami of Mitadake Saga's alias -is- The Boy with Goggles. They don't come in useful
  • Lampshaded in this Hark! A Vagrant.
  • The Commander in Manly Guys Doing Manly Things has these. Lampshaded here.
  • Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal presents to us the advanced rules for Rock, Paper, Scissors. As the Alt-text/Votey specifically points out: Goggles: They Do Nothing
  • Weregeek gives us this.
  • Pocky Robot parodies subversions of this at end of this strip.
  • Averted, in Gunnerkrigg Court here, and then lampshaded in Tom's rant.
  • Since a character redesign, Shelly Mander of Femmegasm wears goggles for no reason.

Web Original

  • Mad Scientist Dr. Horrible wears goggles on his forehead; he does no more than adjust them until the end, when he becomes a true villain.
  • That Guy With The has That Chick with the Goggles.
  • has a goggle smiley inspired in part by one of Maplestory's bosses, Rellik, and in part by the Simpsons quote below. The goggles became wildly popular, and people began editing their avatars to include them. Nexon (Maplestory's publisher in North America) saw this and created Gachapon (egg-machine that requires real money in exchange for random items) only goggles equippable by players. There is an inscription on them stating "Who says the goggles do nothing?"
  • Alex Steacy of Loading Ready Run wears welding goggles at all times, apparently for the look.
  • In Mitadake High, one of the characters wears goggles (and is in fact referred to as The Boy With Goggles). There are a number of ways to inflict temporary blindness on other players, and Goggles is no exception to them. More than once somebody playing Goggles has yelled the memetic phrase after being blinded.
  • Stuart Ashen invokes this trope at the end of his Cyber FX review, in which the eponymous goggles are rather useless.
  • Vdex Project once had goggles in the Secondhand Shop. Lampshaded in the achievement you get when you buy them.
  • Many in The League of STEAM wear goggles (it's steampunk, what do you expect?) but they rarely seem to be used for anything.

Western Animation

  • Named for a line in The Simpsons [1]. Rainier Wolfcastle is playing the lead in a Radioactive Man movie, and filming a scene that involves the use of a giant vat of real acid, prompting the director to instruct everyone to wear safety goggles. The take goes horribly wrong, and Wolfcastle's response to a tidal wave of acid crashing down on him is to put on his safety goggles.

 Rainier Wolfcastle: My eyes! The goggles do nothing!

  • Frida from El Tigre. In one episode, after her goggles fall off and break, Frida shrieks, "Those are prescription!" However, she never actually wears them over her eyes.
  • Oban Star Racers has Molly, who, being a Star Racer pilot (basically a podracer pilot) always wears her goggles on her forehead and has even been seen sleeping in them. However, since inside her vehicle she is safely concealed behind a plastic dome, she doesn't really need to protect her eyes. Since her mother also wore a pair, which are constantly seen in flashbacks on top of her head, chances are very high that Molly initially got hers because they looked like her mother's.
  • Transformers Animated is fond of this:
    • Blitzwing has goggles built into the helmet of his robot mode head. Not only does he A) Not wear them, B) Not need them, what with being a robot and all, C) Could not pull them down over his eyes even if he did, but D) his "angry" face already has a red visor over its eyes and his "calm" face has a monocle, which means that he is essentially wearing two pairs of equally-useless goggles! Blitzwing is the KING of Goggles Do Nothing.
    • Prometheus Black still wears his visor thing even after turning into a sentient mass of acid. Maybe it's so we don't have to see whatever the hell his eyes must look like.
    • And once again Jetfire has aviator goggles that are apparently part of his head.
  • The kiwi from Kiwi dons a pair of pilots goggles before jumping off the cliff. But he doesn't ever use them.
  • Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers: Both Monterey Jack and Gadget wear goggles on their head as part of their normal outfit, but rarely (as in, maybe once or twice ever) wear them over their eyes. This despite the fact that they fly around in a high-speed air vehicle without a windscreen all the time.
    • Once Monterey wears his normal flightcap goggles on his head and a second pair actually over his eyes.
  • In Teen Titans, it's not really clear why Terra wears goggles. She rarely uses them and they look more like swim goggles than anything. Also, her power involves controlling rocks, which the goggles wouldn't protect against anyway.
    • When she rides a rock as she levitates it, the goggles may protect against the wind. They may also protect against dust and dirt that get flung around when she moves rocks.
  • In "The Rock", Archer finds a pair of night vision goggles in the ISIS storeroom, and despite being in a brightly lit area, puts them on. Later, he still has them on outside the San Marino palace. While it is night, neither Lana nor the dozens of ODIN agents have them. And when the lights turn on...

 "Sweet Jesus, the goggles!"


Real Life

  • For some time, Drew Carey's glasses were only a prop and did not actually correct his vision; he had eye surgery and didn't need glasses. They're bifocals now, though.
  • Neon coloured goggles are popular in rave and cybergoth culture, purely for aesthetic reasons.
    • Ditto steampunk, though their goggles tend to be more monochrome and have gadgets on them.
    • Rivethead as well.
    • Even Cyberpunk is guilty of this with it's signature mirrorshades- though they might be waiting for display glasses.
    • Some pairs of rave goggles even have a grate under the lens, making them harder to see through than shutter shades.
  • In certain accessory stores, such as Claire's or Icing, it is possible to buy rectangular-lensed, black-and-neon-framed Nerd-looking glasses that do nothing. In fact, because real glasses dirty so easily, unless the buyer polishes them almost constantly they'll partially obscure her vision.
    • Some people actually wear these spectacle frames without any lens because of the last sentence.
  • US Army soldiers are all issued ballistic safety goggles to protect against dust and shrapnel, and almost every unit has the standard that they be secured to the Kevlar helmet over the special clamp that is used to mount a separate night vision device. This is a uniform standard, but the goggles themselves are difficult to use in this configuration, and likely become deformed, scratched, uncomfortable, or too cumbersome to use as eye protection. With the change in the US army to a brimless helmet, the goggles (normally covered by a cloth sleeve) work better as a brim to shade they eyes than they do when used as intended. Furthermore, soldiers are all issued ballistic sunglasses, which are usually worn (as intended) in addition to the mostly useless goggles on their helmets. The main reason you never see this in TV or movies is that the glasses cause horrible reflection and distortion, and goggles further have a tendency to fog up, making this "protective gear" potentially fatal in combat. Most soldiers will have multiple pairs of goggles and some even use them as intended, but the ones already on the helmet are the least likely to see actual use.
  • Most women's clothing doesn't have belt loops, making belts on women nonfunctional. Furthermore, since women tend to have higher hip-to-waist ratios than men, they usually don't need belts to begin with, depending on how well their trousers fit.
  • Many blind people wear sunglasses.
  • In almost every science class, where safety goggles are actually required AND handed out, most students either wear them on their forehead or else around their necks, doing nothing at all to protect the eyes from chemicals that might splash back into the face, which is what they're supposed to do.
    • Some science teachers require safety goggles for rather mundane experiments (in some extreme cases the greatest danger being a paperclip), making the already rarely used goggles very useless indeed.
  • People's Liberation Army Marine Corps. Never were they once shown wearing their standard issue goggles over their eyes [1], even when they require eye protection they wear their own, leaving the issued goggles on their helmets/tuques. [2] Can be justified by the same reasons as the American army example above.
  1. Which has now become an Internet catch phrase - often misquoted as "The goggles, they do nothing!" - used when someone sees something so horrific or disgusting that Brain Bleach is required