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There are many ways to show how much contempt a person has for someone else. One classic way is through spitting. In general, spitting is considered a rather rude, disgusting and unsanitary habit. When somebody is forced to wear that spit on their face? Well... that can be a bit insulting. This can be used by any character, whether they be the protagonist or the villain.

In fiction, Spiteful Spit usually shows up in three flavors:

  • When one person spits on another, usually the face.
    • A variation on this is spitting on someone's corpse, a sign of ultimate disrespect for that person (not to mention a lack of respect Due to the Dead).
  • Spitting on a person's prized possession. This version is more stealth, but still shows quite a bit of contempt.
  • The mere mention of the other person's name

Compare Second Face Smoke.

Examples of Spiteful Spit include:

Anime and Manga

  • Rurouni Kenshin: one of Shishio's Mooks get captured by the Kyoto ninja, and spits in defiance when questioned. The head ninja's response is to tell his assistants to break out the long nails and candle wax.
    • Several chapters earlier, while Aoshi's on his way to Kyoto, he sees four of Shishio's Mooks having a picnic around his deceased henchmen's gravestones. He tells the mooks not to desecrate the graves, in response to which one of them contemptuously spits on one gravestone. Aoshi does not take it well.
  • In Katekyo Hitman Reborn Gamma reveals to Gokudera that the Tenth Vongola Boss was gunned down in plain view of many of his subordinates. Gokudera then dives into a fight with Gamma he definitely won't win. When he loses Gamma tortures him for information and Gokudera responds by spitting in his face.


  • In Winter War, Ikkaku spits on the floor when explaining that Ichimaru Gin has taken control of Seireitei and is calling himself "soutaichou".


  • In The Producers, Bialystock and Bloom briefly wear swastika armlets in order to appease Liebkind, then put them in a rubbish bin as soon as they are out on the street and spit on them before putting the lid on.
  • Happens in the 2009 Sherlock Holmes with Robert Downey, Jr., when his character is in a fight. He does not take it well.
  • In the movie Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, having been abused by her family's church's congregation, Jeanette spits in the face of one of the members when he says "I forgive you."
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers has Wormtongue spitting at Aragorn when the latter offers a hand to help him up.
  • In The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (1943) Kaunitz, who had been a German prisoner of war during the Boer War, has published accusations that the British have committed atrocities in South Africa; when the film's English hero, Candy, calls him out on it, Kaunitz spits in his face, and Candy punches him.
  • In The Remake of The Saint, Emma runs to the Embassy, pursued by Russian mobsters. When the guard shuts the gate and tells the crooks to step back, their leader spits in his face, and the guard stands his ground looking very offended.
  • Total Recall. Cohaagen is about to have Melina's personality overwritten. He tells her "We're having you fixed. You're going to be respectful, compliant, and appreciative, the way a woman should be." She spits in his face.
  • Starship Troopers. Zander (Carmen's boyfriend) does this to the Brain Bug just before it sucks out his brain.
  • Dr. No. After Bond has Miss Taro arrested for being Dr. No's spy/henchwoman, she spits in his face.
  • Fatal Instinct. In the Flash Back Backstory, Max Shady spat in Ned Ravine’s face when the jury found him guilty.
  • Tank Girl: The title character does it to a Water & Power trooper when she's captured.
  • Buckaroo Banzai. Penny Priddy does it to Lord John Whorfin while he's interrogating her inside Yoyodyne.
  • A Clockwork Orange: Alex's probation officer, Deltoid, spits on his face after he is arrested.
  • Kill Bill Vol. 2: The Bride spits blood in Budd's face after he shoots her. He responds by spitting back - except his spit is far more plentiful and laden with chewed tobacco.
  • In Little Nicky, Valerie does this to Adrian. He responds by swallowing it.
  • The Evil That Men Do (1984) opens with the torture specialist villain giving a lecture to a group of army officers with the 'help' of a prisoner who, at one point, spits in his face. The doctor calmly wipes it off and says, "Notice, gentlemen, how the subject clings to compensatory morale, and habitual defences." Then he calls for the electrodes.
  • In Titanic Rose, to get away from Cal who is keeping her from going to rescue Jack, spits in Cal's face.
  • In Ever After (film) Paulette says at one point about Monsieur le Peu "Horrible man. If he didn't buy a bushel of vegetables every week, I'd spit on him!"


  • In the Safehold series by David Webber: Gwylym Manthyr is the last of his crew to be tortured to death on a rack, and his voice has been taken by months of Cold-Blooded Torture. So when Grand Inquisitor Zhaspahr Clyntahn performs his 'cow the heretic' act before the crowd, knowing Manthyr can't speak, Manthyr finds a way. And as he dies, he gets to savor the look on the Grand Inquisitors face.
  • In To Kill a Mockingbird, Bob Ewell spits on Atticus when the lawyer decides that he will defend Tom Robinson in court.
  • In Harry Potter, Amycus Carrow spits in Professor McGonagall's face. This doesn't sit well with Harry.
  • Subverted in Dune where a Fremen spits on the prince's desk and it almost ends in violence. Then it is explained that it's actually a local form of showing respect - on Arakkis, water is that valuable.
    • Also played straight in the David Lynch Movie, when Baron Vladimir Harkonnen spits on Jessica Atreides.
  • Alan Dean Foster's Star Wars Expanded Universe novel Splinter of the Minds Eye. Captain-Supervisor Grammel insults the Yuzzem by saying that they stink. One of the Yuzzem retaliates by spitting a blob of saliva and hitting him on the back of the neck. Later, when Leia takes up Luke's lightsaber to fight Darth Vader - yes, she is a Badass, and he laughs at her, she spits at him.
    • In Solo Command, a captured enemy scientist spits on Nawara Ven, who takes it in stride. It's rather satisfying; she's got a serious case of Fantastic Racism, and he's a nonhuman who's been bearing up calmly under it for half the book.

  He brought out a handkerchief of fine cloth, wiped the sputum away, and discarded it, as though the substance were poison, ruining the cloth forevermore.

  • Used and subverted in Protector of the Small. On one hand, Kel needs to find a gesture to show the Chamber that it won't break her with its nightmarish visions. On the other, it's later "an offering of herself" to appease any restless ghosts.
  • In Les Misérables, Fantine, fallen as low as she can get (a whore, sick with tuberculosis, and arrested for attacking a bourgeois) spits in the face of the mayor, because his strict laws about moral conduct were what drove her to her state. The mayor, being The Messiah, forgives her for it almost at once.
  • In Bloody Jack Clarissa once spits full in Jacky's face in contempt.
  • Bertha, Rochester's insane wife in Jane Eyre does this to the titular character.

Live Action Television

  • Everybody Loves Raymond: Marie spits at the mention Robert's ex-wife, Joanne.
  • CSI: Dr. Langston gets a massive blob of phlem on the side of his face in the episode showing his first day after trying to assure a boy who turned his junkie mother in that he did the right thing.
  • In one episode of Bones, the Perp Of The Week was caught because he spit on the victim after he killed him, so they were able to trace his DNA.
    • In another episode, Booth and Brennan were investigating a death metal band, and interrupted their practice to question them. Booth whipped out his badge and asked them to stop playing. The lead singer spit on the badge, so Booth pulled out his gun and shot their amps, freaking out the band. When one of them asked him if he would put away his gun, he calmly told them he was thinking about it while wiping off his badge on the lead's pants.
  • Doctor Who has also used the "actually, it's an alien way of showing respect" subversion, in the episode "The End of the World."
  • Angel: While on the receiving end of a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown, Faith hocks a loogie of her own blood in The Beast's face.
    • Also, the Catch Phrase of the head of the Italian branch of Wolfram & Hart:

 "The gypsies are filthy people. *spit* We shall speak of them no more."

  • And a similar example on Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Willow almost manages to kill Glory. After she's used up all her magic and it looks like Glory will squash her like a bug, Willow spits in her face. Did I mention that Glory is a god?
    • When Buffy is in Faith's body in "Who Are You?", a member of the Watcher's Council spec ops team spits in her face, and Buffy starts to understand where Faith's me-against-the-world attitude comes from.
  • This is a running gag in Corner Gas: residents of Dog River all reflexively turn their heads and spit on the ground (or floor) at the mention of their rival, neighboring town of Woolerton.
  • On Flavor of Love when Pumkin was eliminated, she famously spit in rival New York's face.

Professional Wrestling

  • During Randy Orton's "Legend Killer" gimmick, Mick Foley, who was to face him, decided to quit. When Orton confronted him, Mick refused to fight him. Leading Orton to say to him "You're not a legend. You're a coward" before spitting in his face.
  • Bret Hart spat in Vince McMahon's face following the Montreal Screwjob.


  • In The Merchant of Venice, Shylock notes that Anton would literally spit on him as a way of showing contempt.
  • Timon of Athens: "Would thou wert clean enough to spit upon!"
  • Very common in Les Misérables when Fantine has been arrested and Valjean comes to her rescue, she reminds him that he wouldn't listen to her when she worked for him, so he's directly responsible for her plight now. Cue spit. (This also is in the novel.)

Video Games

  • Alyx does it to Dr. Breen in Half-Life 2.
  • The Golden Ending of Heavy Rain has Laura spitting on Scott's grave after discovering he's the Origami Killer.
  • X-Men Origins Wolverine has the chieftain spitting on William Stryker's face when he refuses to tell him where a rock came from.
  • In Wing Commander III, during taunting/questioning by Prince Thrakhath, "Angel" Devereaux spits in his face.
  • In Famous 2 would have Nix doing this to Bertrand after he dies as the Behemoth.
  • Togainu no Chi; Akira spits at Shiki during one encounter on his route. Shiki is merely amused by his defiance.
  • In The Sims Medieval Sims can be spit on during swordfights. This gives them the debuff "Spat On" which has the flavor text "So you think you can blind me and spit in my eye?"
  • The Fremen version (see Dune) appears in Emperor Battle for Dune, but the Fremen in question spits on a table instead of at someone. Gunseng Harkonnen spits his older brother Copec in the face after Copec beat him to usurping their father; Copec immediately responds (sarcastically) that Gunseng apparently has 'gone native' and adopted Fremen customs for his own.

Web Comics

  • Occurs a few times in Drowtales:
    • Mel'arnach does this to her mother Quain'tana after her guards restrain her from outright attacking when Quain turns her back.
    • A Kyorl'solenurn soldier spits at the feet of Tir'ade and Abyte, who are former members of their clan who were exiled for being tainted. Since the two of them belong to another powerful clan an outright assault is out of the question, but it gets the point across.

Web Original

  • Jen of Cake Wrecks writes out spitting sounds - "Ptui" etc - at the mere mention of the dreaded CCC, or Cup-Cake Cake. (A cupcake cake, for those unfamiliar, is a set of cupcakes glued to a cake board with icing, while still in their wrappers, and covered with a two-inch-thick layer of icing in order to pretend that they're actually a single large cake.)

Western Animation

  • In Shrek, the Gingerbread Man spits in Lord Farquad's face during his interrogation.

 Farquad: Tell me where they're hiding!

Gingerbread Man: Eat me! (spits)

  • In Disney's version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Esmeralda spits on Frollo's face. She does this while tied to a stake, ready to be burned, and this is her answer to Frollo's proposal that she be released in exchange for being "his".
  • The Simpsons: when Monty Burns is presumed dead, great leaders of peace gather to spit in his grave. They actually have to stop and suck out the pond of spit so they can continue.
    • In "Bart the Murderer", Bart's actions are depicted in "Blood on the Blackboard: The Bart Simpson Story". In the TV movie "Skinner" spits on "Bart", who says that wasn't smart as he fires a gun.
  • The beginning of Batman: Under the Red Hood has Jason Todd spitting blood on Joker's face after almost being beaten to death by him.
  • In Rio, Jewel does this to the leader of the marmosets sent to capture her and Blu. Blu tries the same, only for it to dribble down his beak.

Real Life

  • The ancient Greek philosopher Diogenes was once invited to a rich man's house who told him not to spit on the ground, since there were expensive carpets and such everywhere. Diogenes spit in the man's face and said that he couldn't find another place. Yes, Diogenes was quite a punk.