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Kimono Fanservice goes well with this...

A naked or topless woman is shown only by the camera showing her bare back (and nothing below her waist). This usually means someone is seeing her Sexy Front... but not us. As a form of Discretion Shot, it allows the suggestion of female nudity without actually showing the bare breasts.

Very Rare Male Examples of this trope also exist. Most often seen in Yaoi and Otokonoko works, which use censorship as a sort of titillation, the idea being that what you don't see is more interesting that what you do.

This trope does not count if the character is also seen topless from the front. Dress Hits Floor is the below-the-waist equivalent.

For clothing that exposes the back but covers the front, see Sexy Backless Outfit.

Examples of Toplessness From the Back include:

Anime and Manga

  • When Akane's body was possessed by a vengeful spirit doll in Ranma ½, it tried to distract Ranma (so it could kill him afterwards) by stripping bare in front of him. As pictured above, the audience only got to see Akane's back and upper hips; the real Akane (trapped in the doll's body) threw herself at Ranma's face to keep him from looking.
  • In Inuyasha, Kagura has one of these in an episode when she's attacked from behind, showing off Naraku's mark on her back.
  • Happens to Clare in Claymore a couple of times when Rubei tells her to turn around while naked. Of course, what he's seeing is a really horrible-looking scar, or possibly something even more squicktastic, but the idea is the same.
  • Riza Hawkeye from Fullmetal Alchemist, has one in both manga and second anime. It shows that she has a huge alchemic tattoo over it, plus big burn scars. Since it's Riza, you could still call it Fanservice, and the fourth ending to Brotherhood prominently features her back.
    • Two eyecatches also feature a topless Riza and her alchemic tattoo. One has her as a youngster and still not scarred, another features her as an adult and with burns.
  • In the Fate/stay night TV series, the audience sees Saber's back while Shiro sees the front after she gets out of the bath. Saber doesn't seem to mind and tells Shiro that he shouldn't think of her as a woman, but as a warrior first. Shiro's reaction? "Please Put Some Clothes On!"
  • The Ouran High School Host Club anime has the twins putting a photoshopped picture of Haruhi's shirtless back on the club website[1], leading Tamaki to falsely conclude that they must've seen something while taking the picture. It's more egregious in the manga, where the twins put Haruhi's head on Tamaki's chest and Tamaki is still fooled into thinking it's real.
  • Mahou Sensei Negima does this on occasion, but it's usually overshadowed by the fact that most of the girls are naked all the time anyway, their modesty only preserved by Censor Steam and lack of detail.
  • Subverted in Code Geass. During Kallen's Shower Scene, the curtain gets pulled open, and we get a Toplessness From The Back shot. Then the camera pans down...
  • Averted in the OP sequence of Mnemosyne, which shows Rin, in the buff, pressing against a stone pillar. Needless to say, her sexy back, legs, and rear end are visible for your viewing pleasure.
  • Gintoki gets a lot of these moments. Most of the time, they're played for laughs but that doesn't stop the fangirls from ogling over him.
  • Fushigi Yuugi gives us a view of Miaka's back as she's bathing to purify herself for the summoning ceremony (her butt's included though, poor girl). We don't see her when she turns around. Tamahome does.
  • Spice and Wolf: Holo normally doesn't wear clothes, but she does use the trope to justify why she's not going to remove her (ear- and tail- concealing) cloak for some strange merchant Holo and Lawrence met that day.
  • In Zero Zero Nine One Mylene Hoffman/ Agent 009-1 has several Toplessness From The Back scenes combined with Modesty Bedsheets. Indeed, the very first time you see her in the series is when she gets out of bed wearing only a bedsheet and showing plenty of sexy back.
  • Soul Eater. Tsubaki Natsukasa in the first opening and the various Furo Scenes.
  • Weapons-grade Pettanko Isis Egret from Magical Record Lyrical Nanoha Force has another side that's gotten a lot of attention lately, with a certain racerback outfit.
  • Mixed with the Japanese nape-of-neck thing in Samurai Champloo when Fuu poses for an artist. First she's asked to only loosen her kimono a bit and let the collar slide a little lower. OK, that's a bit naughty. The artist just keeps prompting her to lower the collar more and more. Scandalous!
  • Marik Ishtar's tattooed back is lampshaded as such in Yugioh The Abridged Series.
  • When Akune of Medaka Box first joins the student council, we get this shot. Yum.
  • This is often the most we get to see of Nami in One Piece during her shower scenes. In some cases, however, she is shown topless from the front, but with her breasts covered by Censor Steam. The trope was also used as an actual plot point for more than a half chapter, when Hancock had to show Luffy the mark on her back which is actually a tattoo that signals her as a former slave of the World Nobles.
  • Horribly used in Blood Plus, where Diva removes her dress and shows off her bare back right before she rapes and kills Riku.

Comic Books

  • Astonishing X-Men #21. When Colossus and Kitty are given a refuge from the Breakworld's Powerlord by former gladiator Arghanne, Peter considers the ramifications of his presence on Breakworld before turning in. Hearing his confusion, Kitty emerges from behind the curtain. The reader is treated to a clear view of Kitty's nude back. Peter clearly sees her front.

 "Now I am more confused. But somehow not as tired."




 Paul: (While they are in the middle of having sex) Shouldn't we use a condom?

Marcy: It's okay, I'm healthy.

Marcy: (Later) Damn, Paul, you really did a number on my back!


Live Action TV

  • This happens in an episode of 24, when Nina is forced to undress in front of Jack, so she doesn't try anything. She deliberately faces him, showing us her scarred back. Prison must have been rough.
  • In the season 2 finaleof Stargate SG-1, O'Neill wakes Carter from the cryotable and she only has a sheet on. When she sits up her entire back is revealed resulting in O'Neill giving her a through looking over before requesting they get her some clothes.
  • Saffron in the Firefly episode "Our Mrs. Reynolds".
    • And Inara taking a sponge bath in the unaired pilot. Lucky sponge.
  • Caprica-Six or Sharon Valerii [Athena] in Battlestar Galactica, and basically an excuse to have a sex scene and show off the glowing spines of the female Cylons (at least initially, as the concept was forgotten would have made identifying Cylons too easy).
  • Zhaan ("Is nudity a taboo in your culture?") and Chiana in Farscape.
    • And Sikozu in season 4.
  • T'Pol showed her interest to Tucker in Star Trek: Enterprise this way.
    • This popped up in Star Trek: Voyager as well, in an episode where Q's son uses his powers to take away Seven's clothes.
  • Parker from Leverage does this quite often. Usually in front of Hardison.
  • The audience (and Sheridan) get this treatment on Babylon 5 when the new Political Officer attempts to seduce him.
    • In a fifth-season episode we see Lyta Alexander nude from the back in a scene with the irritating telepath Byron, showing how vulnerable she is to his manipulation.
  • Rather surprisingly, this shows up in the pilot episode of The X-Files between Mulder and Scully. The case involved teenagers being returned from alien abduction with two small bumps on their lower back. While getting ready to take a shower, Scully finds two such marks on her own back, freaks out, and runs--in her underwear and red robe--to Mulder's hotel room to get his opinion. Mulder is understandably perplexed when she drops her robe and has a moment of pause. There is a shot of both the front of Scully in her undies and her bare back as Mulder inspects the bumps. They turn out to be bug bites, and for the rest of the series, Scully is noticeably more stoic and clothed.
    • And how Chris Carter thought that this scene wouldn't escape romance-hungry viewers (Mulder and Scully were originally only supposed to be "platonic work partners") is insane.
  • The British sitcom Coupling does this a couple of times - once with Sally (Kate Isitt) in series two and once with Jane (Gina Bellman) in series four. In each case the audience is treated to "the full backal", as the show puts it, but other characters see the front.
    • Also once with Sarah Alexander's character.
  • Abbey in NCIS had one of these scenes early in the series, and it is now part of her montage in the opening credits


  • The Vanity Fair photo of Miley Cyrus that caused so much controversy in 2008.


  • The Pink Floyd poster "Back Catalog"; naked women, with Pink Floyd album covers painted on their back.
  • The cover of Sade's newest album Soldier of Love. Bam.
  • Lady Gaga's videos for "Bad Romance" and "Alejandro", although both incidences contain a certain amount of disturbing along with the sexy.

New Media

  • Lampshaded in Yu-Gi-Oh the Abridged Series when Marik/Malik takes his shirt of to reveal a tattoo on his back. "Now watch, Fangirls, as I strip. Yea, get a load of that back. You (EFF)ing love it, don't you!"
    • Might be counted as Fan Disservice in the original anime, once you see how exactly he received it, since in the original Japanese-language anime, it wasn't a tattoo at all; it was actually carved into the flesh of his back to the point of scarring. And look at how intricate this thing is!
  • Silverwingfox's series of Disney girls in black dresses had this for Jane Porter

Video Games

  • Miang from Xenogears, after having sex with Ramsus. She has a Modesty Bedsheet to cover her hips, but Grahf is getting a good look at her bare front.
  • The Wii game Enjoy Your Massage! has this as the gameplay. You massage the bare backs of attractive blue-haired women.
  • In Fear Effect the player is awarded with Hana's bare back after she drops her towel to distract an enemy.

Web Comics

  1. since Haruhi is actually a girl, but they want people to think she's a boy