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Zettai 2519.jpg


The area [of exposed skin] between the hem of a miniskirt and the tops of a knee-high [socks] is called by what name?


"Absolute Territory" (zettai ryouiki in Japanese) describes the area of uncovered thigh between the skirt and the stockings that's apparently a total magnet for Male Gaze.

The term originates from Neon Genesis Evangelion to designate an Absolute Terror field, although it's had considerable semantic drift.

Zettai Ryouiki is made up of three components: socks, skin, and skirt. More broad definitions permit the use of other articles of clothing in place of a skirt (such as shorts). As per usual for fandom who obsess about costumes, this can be considered a Moe attribute and thus, appear prominently in character designs and schoolgirl outfits.

Since a Zettai Ryouiki is defined by the length of the stockings or socks, some people have categorized it into grades depending on the length of the socks. This ranking system goes from Grade F to Grade A.[1] However, only Grades A and B are considered true Zettai Ryouiki.

As a relatively new phenomenon, the symbolism of Zettai Ryouiki only recently began to crystallize. Since it is, by nature, a sensual costume that doesn't reveal the "naughty bits", it symbolizes budding, innocent sexuality, a trait common for The Ingenue who is already aware of her attractiveness but not (yet) cynical enough to put it to use (which is why many a Tsundere wears Zettai Ryouiki). Of course, as with any symbols, Genre Savvy characters can invoke the trope on purpose even if far from the described archetype themselves.

It has gained popularity around the world, especially in Japan, where it is considered the most popular fetish,[2] and is also a very popular fashion item with girls and young women there, so the occurrence of Zettai Ryouiki can be regarded as Truth in Television.

A ratio of 4:1:2.5, the so called "Golden Ratio" (黄金比 ōgonhi), is considered the ideal. Where 4 is the length of the skirt, 1 is the length of the Zettai Ryouiki, and 2.5 is the length from the bottom of the Zettai Ryouiki to the knees.

An Action Girl may trade the skirt for hotpants but if it doesn't include thigh-highs and visible skin, it's not Zettai Ryouiki. This trope not only covers socks, but Thigh-High Boots as well.

See also Joshikousei (a school uniform this trope is often combined with), Stocking Filler (for stockings without the skirts), Mini-Dress of Power, Who Wears Short Shorts?, and She's Got Legs. Compare with Opera Gloves, which is the equivalent for arms. Contrast with Catholic School Girls Rule (who usually show more leg than this) and Panty Shot. On the other end of the spectrum, contrast Proper Tights with a Skirt.

As the length of this page proves, Zettai Ryouiki is Serious Business.

Examples should be limited to thigh-high (called "Rank A" on All The Tropes) and over-knee (called "Rank B" on All The Tropes) stockings. Use the page image to identify them.

Examples of Zettai Ryouiki include:



  • now sells a shirt praising the style by name: Link.

Anime and Manga

  • Shana in Shakugan no Shana.
  • Yuri Zahard from Tower of God has this with black stockings.
  • Louise Françoise Le Blanc de La Valliere in Zero no Tsukaima. As an Expy of Shana Clone, this isn't surprising.
  • Taiga from Toradora!, not surprising for another expy of Louise. It also gets a lot of attention in the opening credits.
  • Aria H. Kanzaki from Hidan no Aria, yet another Twin Tails wearing Tsundere voiced by Rie Kugimiya, who happens to be one of her schools elite S Rank students. Her zettai ryouiki are known to magically shift between A and B whenever she reveals the dual thigh holsters that she somehow keeps hidden under her skirt.
  • Code Geass
    • Kallen Stadtfeld in her school uniform, not to mention her Custom Uniform. She is also credited with popularizing the hotpants+socks variety of Zettai Ryouiki.
    • C.C's new black outfit in R2 also uses the hotpants + socks variation.
    • Suzaku might also have a fondness for Zettai Ryouiki. Sorta.
    • Nunnally gets to use a B Grade Ryouiki in the Knightmare of Nunnally manga, as it's included in the Ashford Academy's middle school uniform. Same goes to Alpha Bitch Ekaterina, her Girl Posse, and Nunners's best friend Alice.
    • Anya gets to use a Grade A while in her Knight of Rounds uniform.
    • The technical term for the near-impenetrable shield with which the Shinkirou is equipped is the Absolute Defensive Territory (Zettai Shugo Ryouiki). Don't tell me, especially given the amount of real Ryouiki in this series, that that's not tongue-in-cheek par extraordinaire on the part of the writers.
    • One of the two protagonists(?) of the upcoming Boukoku no Akito, Layla (the girl on the left) [dead link] has a Grade B.
    • The comedy manga compilation Knight Volume 2 has a story ("Decide for Yourself" by Hina Mido) where C.C. actually launches into a rant about Zettai Ryouiki when Lelouch dismisses her question of "thigh-high versus knee socks" with "doesn't matter to me". Sadly this gets Lost in Translation, but anyone familiar with the concept can tell the original intent of the rant.

C.C.: What did you just say!? Are you stupid? This is for a school uniform! I'm talking about a mini-skirt! The knee-length socks which show our shiny knees, or thigh highs that highlight the area between the edge of our skirt and our thighs! If you don't have a hard time choosing between these socks, you don't know anything about school uniforms.

  • Touka, the daughter of the Tennouji Family (from Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu 2nd season), has a Grade A Zettai Ryouiki, aside from twin tails and tsundere spoiled brat personality, making it a Grade S.
  • Love interest Rion Akagami wears this in Cage of Eden, even when they're stuck on a tropical island inhabited by hordes of prehistoric animals.
  • Lucky Star
  • Mazinger Z: Sayaka Yumi tended to wear short skirts whether she was wearing her school uniform or casual clothes. And later in the series she wore a very short white-red skirt and knee-length, white boots. In the manga versions more female characters wore attires or uniforms that showed their tights, such like the Gamia or Minerva-X in Shin Mazinger Zero.
  • Chiaki Minami,(occasionally worn by Kana at home) also the standard uniform in her school in Minami-ke.
  • Kurumi Momose and Yuma Kashiwagi in Pani Poni Dash.
  • Matsuri Shihou's excellent Zettai Ryouiki is likely the source of her immortality in Sola.
  • Seems to be a part of the standard school uniform in Zombie Loan.
  • Similarly, it appears to be part of Stellvia Foundation uniform in Stellvia of the Universe.
  • Yomi in Azumanga Daioh.
  • Sai Hinoki from Betterman is a good example for this trope.
  • Pretty much standard uniform for all female crew members in Starship Operators, but considering it is a Show Within a Show, one could blame it on Sex Sells.
  • Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Striker S
    • Nanoha and Fate's basic Barrier Jackets in the third season seem to have been designed with this in mind.
    • Fate's Barrier Jacket in the first two seasons, as well, and Nanoha's normal outfits (non-Barrier Jacket, non-school uniform) from those seasons. And the Lieze twins (very perfect "A" Grade). And Vita's normal non-combat outfit (only "B"-Grade, which is sad because she meets both of the added requirements for a Grade S). And Teana's Barrier Jacket and military uniform. Yeah, this show runs on Fan Service, alright.
    • Don't forget Sister Schach.
    • There's also the strange case of Reinforce, who has... only one sock.
    • And now Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Vi Vid adds Corona, as well as Lio and Einhart in their Barrier Jackets.
    • Young Nanoha sported these in the OP of the first series.
  • Alice in Aria since it's part of her school uniform, making her of the very few main characters who regularly wears something else aside from her Undine uniform. In one anime episode, Aika wears the variety with shorts.
  • Princess Rita Sior in Sisters of Wellber.
  • Seemingly part of the school outfit on School Days. It's also humorously refereed to, as an army of school girls in short skirts activate Zettai Ryouiki by putting on knee socks in an attempt to draw more people to their classroom for the School Festival. This instance is doubly notable as the last comedic occurrence in the anime before things go straight to hell.
  • It's also part of the school outfit in the one Margaret attends in Madlax.
  • And Kagura Tennouzou's school in Speed Grapher. IIRC, Kagura also uses Zettai Ryouki when she dones a very Stripperiffic outfit as the Divine Goddess. Yui and Haruna's school in Corrector Yui also has it as a part of its standard outfit. Yui's elemental suit makes the skirt, or even panties, pretty much pointless while initiating, also.
  • Mahou Sensei Negima. Considering that Ken Akamatsu has written about moe on his blog, this is certainly intentional, and shows up quite often, on Yue Ayase, Evangeline, Chachamaru (After her Mid-Season Upgrade, she seems to have the stocking component built into her synthetic skin, Ako, Natsumi and Akira in the Magic World, Nodoka, the other girls from Yue's magic academy, Asuna (Grade S, even), Anya (also Grade S), Chisame and Makie, Yuna, Takane D. Goodman, Setsuna (on rare occasions), Ku Fei... even Negi joins in for a moment during a crossdressing Instant Cosplay Surprise during the school festival (as if the fox girl outfit wasn't enough).
  • Yuuki Cross, and several of the female characters in Vampire Knight wear these.
  • Momiji Sohma from Fruits Basket is another male version, when he wears the girls' uniform at school. Motoko (the president of Yuki's fan club) is also a good example.
  • Gungrave: Mika occasionally wears this.
  • Shiori Takatsuki in the Revolutionary Girl Utena movie. (Zettai unmei mokushi-ryouiki! Um... sorry.)
  • Scheris Adjani rocks a class B in her HOLY uniform in S-Cry-ed, though thanks to her incredibly short skirt it may be misconstrued as a class C.
  • Gundam
  • Shino in .hack//Roots and her Expy Atoli in the G.U. games.
  • To LOVE-Ru
    • Lala Satalin Deviluke
    • Yami manages to pull one off here as well.[3] It ranks as a Grade A.
  • The three heroines of Ultimate Girls.
  • Part of the standard uniform for most schools in Kyoshiro to Towa no Sora, and since the appropriately-named Academia (the series' setting) is a scholastic city (everything is, or is related to or servicing, a school), that means just about every girl in the city falls into this trope. By law.
  • Mishio Maeno in Mnemosyne.
  • Ranma ½
    • Female!Ranma while disguised as Ryōga's sister, Yoiko.
    • Akane as well, on occasion, notably at the start of the Martial Skating arc.
  • Tsuyuri in Doujin Work.
  • Frequently, Nico Robin of One Piece, if thigh-high boots count.
  • Yoko from Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann goes the hotpants route (which Kamina gets a good long look at). She later switches out the socks for boots of about the same length. She's has a Grade A but is missing the Girlish Pigtails required to qualify as Grade S.
  • Several of the Claymores wear these, even in the dead of winter. But they are Half-Human Hybrids.
  • Haruhi Suzumiya: Haruhi wears this a couple of times.
  • Rosario + Vampire: Kokoa Shuzen, Mizore Shirayuki, and Yukari Sendo. With the hair, and the attitude Kokoa bumps up to Grade S! However with Mizore, they actually make it an obvious part of her Moe factor, when attempting to seduce Tsukune during moments with his Harem.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!
    • Anzu used the hotpants + socks once, more exactly in the Marik and Noa arcs. Anzu also wears the socks + miniskirt in one of the ending animations.
    • Rei of Yu-Gi-Oh GX.
    • Aki [dead link] of Yu-Gi-Oh 5 Ds.
  • Dragon Ball
  • The trope is Older Than They Think: the belted dress-shorts and boots version was used by Mia from Ronin Warriors.
  • And even older: Megumi from Voltes V uses the uniform miniskirt plus boots version.
  • The eponymous "Black God" of Manga/Kurokami gets one when Akane dresses her up.
  • Tsukino Azusagawa from Yakitate!! Japan.
  • Jun's birdstyle in Science Ninja Team Gatchaman (a.k.a. Battle of the Planets).
  • Pokémon
    • Jessie's Team Rocket miniskirt and thigh-high boots in the anime.
    • Also, Lyra from both the anime and Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver sports a Grade B shorts version.
    • In the Pokémon Special manga, Dawn's counterpart, Platinum, has higher stockings making her closer to a Grade B.
    • Sabrina's anime outfit is a Grade A.
  • Rosette from Chrono Crusade has thigh-high stockings and slits up to nearly her waist in her militia uniform, making it a variation of this trope.
  • D Gray Man: Lenalee Lee. When you think about it, she's actually got Grade S Zettai Ryouiki at first, what with her Girlish Pigtails and all (though she's not much of a Tsundere). That is, until the whole Eshi incident. And her socks/boots give her magical powers. No, really.
  • Seras Victoria from Hellsing, both anime and manga.
  • Shinobu from Ninin ga Shinobuden (a.k.a Ninja Nonsense). Extra points for doing this with a ninja outfit.
  • Naruto
    • Karin. She also gets points for pulling it off with a ninja uniform (for ninja in the service of Orochimaru, no less), though she uses shorts instead of a skirt.
    • Naruto's mother Kushina also liked the look when she was young.
    • Hinata wears them during the 300th episode Milestone celebration.
  • Alsh the Vampire from Bloody Kiss has his preferred Zettai Ryouiki at 10–15 cm.
  • Love Hina
    • Kaolla Suu seems to wear this quite a bit in the manga.
    • Naru also wears this from time to time and the cover of book 7 she manages Grade A and epic Opera Gloves at the same time.
  • Himeko from Himechan no Ribon is a borderline Grade B.
  • Hayate the Combat Butler
    • Nagi and Sakuya. The former a bona fide Grade S.
    • Hinagiku tends towards the hot pants variety, and also gets points for being Tsundere, but no twin-tails.
    • Even Isumi joins in on occasion.
    • In the season 2 first opening, Ha--, er, Hermione gets the treatment, with the usual result.
  • Faye Valentine from Cowboy Bebop, though with hot pants and not a skirt.
  • In the 4th season of Mariasama ga Miteru Yumi Fukuzawa starts dressing this way outside of school.
  • In Pandora Hearts, this appears to be the Latowidge School girl's uniform. Note that this is not an all-girl's school, either.
  • Sumire's high school in Venus Versus Virus apparently has this as part of the school uniform. What is it with all-girl schools and ultra-short skirts in anime?
  • Bakugan
    • Runo in Bakugan: New Vestroia is Grade S. (In Bakugan Battle Brawlers, she was a thoroughly unremarkable C-Grade, though she already had the other two parts of the S requirements). Sadly, she and the other two main girls from Battle Brawlers are pretty much gone by the second episode.
    • Mira returns in Mechtanium Surge with a new grade A outfit.
  • The sisters Mawata and Mayune from Prétear.
  • Bludgeoning Angel Dokurochan. Dokuro has got to be at least a Grade A, maybe even S.
  • The eponymous Shion of Shion no Ou exhibits Grade A Zettai Ryouiki, usually with a red miniskirt and white thigh highs.
  • My-HiME
    • Nao Yuuki uses Grade B, especially when she's enticing older men to "date" her.
    • Haruka Suzushiro is notable for being the only high school girl that sports it; all the other ones wear socks. Also Grade B.
  • This seems to be part of the standard uniform in Mai-Otome.
  • From 2007 onwards it was a requisite that at least one team member in a Pretty Cure continuity had this:
  • Blue from Wolfs Rain uses thigh-high boots and a peacoat.
  • Moetan is filled with this.
  • The latest volume of Nora has Keini in Grade A. She already had the other two components for Grade S.
  • Sumika from Sasameki Koto.
  • Most people don't notice, but Macross Frontier actually has a lot of this.
    • Nanase wears the traditonal variant with her school uniform.
    • Ranka Lee has it with one of her stage outfits.
    • Sheryl wears both the traditional and hot pants versions as well as a Stripperiffic, one-legged version.
    • Klan is Grade S.
  • Yuki Nomura from No Bra. And you'll probably not believe it, but that's a male example.
  • Nodoka of Saki almost has all the requirements needed for Grade S. Just lacks the personality. Yuuki wears a very suspicious one too, and her personality is a bit more fitting as well.
  • Ellis from El Cazador de la Bruja.
  • Kaze no Stigma
    • Kanon (one of Ren's school friends) wears A-Rank in both her school uniform and her street clothes. She also has twin-tails; unfortunately, she is not a Tsundere.
  • Nodamiki from GA Geijutsuka Art Design Class, at least in her anime incarnation.
  • Aoba Kozue from Mahoraba wears them as part of her personal wardrobe.
  • Kenichi's sister Honoka in Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple. Shigure also wears it regularly.
  • Umino Masachika of Satou Kashi no Dangan wa Uchinukenai sports a solid Tybe B while wearing her school uniform. Most of her classmates wear there stockings somewhere below the knee.
  • Kamen no Maid Guy has Token Mini-Moe Liz wearing this. And she even has the twin pigtails.
  • These seem to be part of the school uniform in Student Council's Discretion. Even when they're wearing swimsuits, the stockings remain.
  • The default female cadet uniform aboard the Libertad in Soukou no Strain is very definitely Grade A.
  • Yukino's rival Maho Izawa in Kare Kano. This is actually included in the default winter/autumn uniform of their school, but Maho wears it outside school too.
  • The girls from I''s. This manga is full of Grade A & B.
  • Sieglinde Baumgard from Dragonaut: The Resonance.
  • Emba from Wild Rock sports a Grade A male version of this (other characters too, but his is the most obvious).
  • Airi of Queen's Blade fame/infamy qualifies. If she were Tsundere, she might possibly be Grade S.
  • Nina of Words Worth, a story-driven H-series, gets the unusual naturally occuring version of this, being a mini-skirted catgirl. Ranks somewhere around a lower A due to how she carries it off.
  • Ran Mouri/Rachel Moore from Case Closed/Detective Conan sports the look from time to time. It's quite noticeable in the first OP, where she uses Type A... If she wore pigtails, her Type B Tsundere traits would give her a Grade S.
  • Hitagi Senjōgahara from Bakemonogatari, who would be a Grade S if Kuudere counts for the personality factor.
  • Lunar of Seto no Hanayome: Double Pigtails? (Check), Tsundere? (check). Yep, we have Grade S.
  • Madoka Ayukawa from Kimagure Orange Road tends to use both A and B. Another one who is Girlish Pigtails away from hitting Grade S.
  • Black Butler
  • Cardcaptor Sakura: Tomoyo definitely loves this trope and dresses Sakura accordingly.
  • In a non-schoolgirl-related example, the eponymous Nana Osaki of Nana likes to mix this with garter belts.
  • Cute devil Dark Mu, of the Mutant Turtles: Legend of the Super Mutants OVA, sports this look combining red thigh-high boots with an equally red minidress.
  • Aoi from Working!! wears these.
  • Riko of Kiss×Sis sometimes sports Grade A, usually to catch the eye of her step brother Keita.
  • In B Gata H Kei, the protagonist Yamada can be seen showing off Grade A while wearing her cheerleader outfit in the series opening.
  • Madoka from Metal Fight Beyblade sports Grade A.
  • Kiara the Amaranthine from There Beyond the Beyond.
  • Angel Beats!
    • Yuri sports a Grade B throughout the series.
    • Shiori Sekine (the bassist) has Grade A.
  • Shugo Chara
    • Utau has a Grade A in her black uniform. Add her signature twin tails and her tsundere attitude, and Utau Hoshina is officially a Grade S! Not to mention her Lunatic Charm costume, as well as Dark Jewel and Seraphic Charm. And Seraphic Charm's supposed to be angelic.
    • Several of Amu's casual outfits have Grade A as well. [1]
    • And Amulet Spade, which, instead of a skirt, has short shorts and adds garter belts.
    • Amulet Diamond had a Grade A and Amu wears pigtails while transformed, although she is usually not tsundere.
    • Amulet Clover has a Grade A and pigtails as well.
  • Sae from Amagami SS often displays this when in her school uniform, as does Kaoru in her waitress outfit (much to the protagonist Junichi's delight during her arc).
  • Mitsuba and Miku from Mitsudomoe.
    • Sometimes Hitoha.
  • Chocola and Vanilla from Sugar Sugar Rune both have Zettai Ryouiki, Chocola with a Grade A and Vanilla with a Grade D. How much you wanna bet that 90% of the time Pierre stares at Chocola's legs instead of her face?
  • Soul Eater
    • In the second ending for the anime, Maka's got some of this thing going on, specifically Grade A.
    • Not to mention Blair, who has a Grade A with her thigh high boots and witch dress.
    • And many variations of Maka's Spartoi uniform feature thigh highs.
    • Kim Diehl and her weapon Jacqueline (who usually wear matching uniforms).
    • Tsubaki has Grade A and combines it with Fashionabl Asymmetry in her Spartoi uniform.
  • The Korean version of Mazinger Z called Robot Taekwon V gives us Yoon, who wears thigh-high boots and a short skirt. Early example.
  • Many of the idol singers in EL sport Grade A, though given that this is a Hentai title, it's to be expected.
  • Kirino from Ore no Imouto ga Konna ni Kawaii Wake ga Nai! displays Grade A in the fourth episode of the anime. Varying degrees can also be seen in some of the games she plays, which should come as no surprise given that she's a secret Eroge Otaku.
  • Bleach
    • The Arrancar Loly uses the boots plus miniskirt version—Grade A, more exactly. Since she has Girlish Pigtails, the only thing keeping her away from Grade S is being a Yandere instead of a Tsundere.
    • Once the Hueco Mundo arc is over and she becomes a senior in Karakura High, Orihime Inoue starts wearing Grade A.
    • New character Riruka Dokugamine has turned out to be a Grade S.
    • Anime-only Nozomi Kujo goes between Grades A and C depending on how she's drawn at the moment, but usually is a B.
  • In High School of the Dead, Rei has Grade A in her uniform and Saeko has Grade A (plus garterbelts) when she borrows Rika's clothes.
  • Kusakabe Maron, from Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne, definitely counts. As a matter of fact, it seems this is part of the uniform.
  • There's a ton in |Black Rock Shooter. It would seem that the girls' outfits are designed the way they are so that it would be easier for them to move. Maid Gunner has thigh highs that would have made her a Grade B, but her skirt is too long for her to qualify. It only counts for Zettai Ryouiki when her skirt flies up to, not a panty shot, but high enough that the tops of her thigh highs are visible.
  • Ryuuko Kounuma from Wolf Guy Wolfen Crest is seen wearing a one legged version. Sadly, it's mixed with Fan Disservice as she's tied up to invoke Damsel in Distress as a part of Haguro's plan.
  • Zakuro Fujiwara/Mew Zakuro from Tokyo Mew Mew.
  • Maria from the Witchblade anime gets these after her personality changes.
  • All Magical Girls from Puella Magi Madoka Magica except Homura. Madoka is a Grade A in her school uniform and a Grade C in her Magical Girl uniform. Madoka has Zettai Ryouiki after her apotheosis. Sayaka is a Grade C in school and B in her magical girl outfit. Mami is somewhat between Grades C and B in her transformated uniform, and Kyouko is a Grade A when transformed.
  • Several characters in Freezing have some form of Zettai Ryouiki, as it seems to be a part of the standard Pandora outfit (even for battle!). The female lead is one of the few that do not, though she certainly attracts attention in other ways. (Underneath it she does have them.) Ganessa Roland is an unequivocal Grade S, however.
  • Panty and Stocking With Garterbelt
    • Fittingly enough, Kneesocks in is a Type A. Except when she takes off the kneesocks to turn them into scythes.
    • Also Stocking herself, who transform hers into katanas.
  • Fairy Tail
    • Erza Scarlett has a few armors that donned this style and in some cover pages.
    • Lucy on a few cover pages, and the clothes she gets from the Stellar spirit world, usually has this.
    • Wendy donned this in the Edoras arc and later in the Tenrou Island arc.
    • Mirajane's Take Over Satan soul gives her this in boots.
    • Angel
    • Virgo
    • Urtear's battle outfit and Meredy.
    • Juvia has Grade B under her dress as seen during her fight with Meredy.
  • Sailor Moon
    • Usagi displays a Grade S in the, well, "S" Movie.
    • One of the outfits that Minako puts on in the opening sequence gives her a Grade A.
  • Several girls in Blue Exorcist, but Kamiki Izumo is the only Grade S. She's got the thigh-highs, the tsundere personality, and her hair is (usually) in twin tails.
  • Infinite Stratos
    • The gym uniform, a swimsuit with stockings [dead link], gives all the girls a clear grade A. More like skintight leg-warmers, though; the girls' ankles are also clearly visible. If only they didn't have shoes, they would be able to get the rare Zettai Ryouiki-Foot Focus double-dip.
    • Houki also has it as a part of her uniform.
  • Mio Isurugi from MM! has Grade A and a tsundere personality, but no twin tails.
  • Ageha the Shinigami from RIN-NEwhite stockings with a white Sailor Fuku.
  • Although their outfits change almost every episode in Hime Chen Otogi Chikku Idol Lilpri, Natsuki/Princess Kaguya's standard princess outfit when using the Princess Fairytale card is grade A Zettai Ryouiki (borderline S). Surprising because she's technically wearing a kimono. She also has grade A with thigh-high boots when she's untransformed but then she's somewhere around the age of eight...
  • Emi Kisaki from Kurogane no Linebarrel. Her black uniform sports long socks that almost touch her little skirt. She is a grade A.
  • Haqua du Lot Herminium from The World God Only Knows is a grade A bordering on S due to her tsundere personality, but lacking the twintails.
  • Fear and Konoha from Cubex Cursedx Curious both sport Grade A. Konoha, with her Girlish Pigtails, would be a Grade S if she were more tsun.
  • Asaka from Cardfight Vanguard sports a Grade B.
  • Taiwan from Axis Powers Hetalia wears a Grade A in Hetaween 2011, while cosplayed as the virtual idol Silverlight. May have bordered on Grade S if you see that she's wearing Girlish Pigtails (which she doesn't, normally) and if you count her interactions with her brothers as her being Tsundere.
  • Maya Kumashiro from Occult Academy is a perfect example of the tsundere and zettai ryouiki as well.
  • Medaka from Medaka Box has Grade B.
  • Meroko of Full Moon o Sagashite is Grade A because she's tsundere to everyone but Takuto, especially Izumi. Lacks the twintails though.
  • Okusama wa Mahou Shoujo has Cruje who wears a Grade A.
  • Persona 4: The Animation has Rise Kujikawa sporting a Grade A (as does her Video Game counterpart).
  • In Bloody Cross, Tsukimiya is between Grade A and B. Momose also has a Grade A in the outfit she wears in the first few chapters.
  • Sora O Kakeru Shoujo
    • The Surre Academy female uniforms default to an A-Rank.
    • Honoka in her regular clothes.
    • Ituski, Boo, and Min's Q-Tector suits.
    • Also Boo and Min's regular police uniforms.
    • Nami's regular clothes and transformed state.
    • Imo's android's maid uniform.
  • About 85% of the cast of Strike Witches manages a setting-specific variation between their striker units and lack of pants.
  • Izumi Akazawa in Another has Grade A,twintails,and also,she has Tsundere-like personality.
  • Corona from Spider Riders wears thigh boots.
  • Myuu from Aesthetica of a Rogue Hero has a Class A school uniform.
  • Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?: Ais Wallenstein, the most-highly-skilled swordswoman in the setting, wears Rank A.

Fan Works

Live-Action TV

  • In Dancing With the Stars, Season 11, one of Brandi's costumes had her dancing in a schoolgirl outfit with long stockings. Given the on-and-off tension between Brandi and her partner Maksim, this was probably a deliberate attempt to invoke Grade S Zettai Ryouiki.
  • Geum Jan Di of Boys Before Flowers, sports this on every episode of the show along with her school uniform.

Music Videos

  • Vocaloid is full of Zettai Ryouiki.
    • For starters, Miku Hatsune wears thigh highs and a skirt (actually, they're thigh-high boots, but many people don't even realize this).
      • And nearly every single fan-made variant of Miku Hatsune (Zatsune, Zumi Hatsune, Kiku Juon, Sai Tonarine, and Kiru Meikane are a few examples) has Grade A, and usually has pigtails.
    • Luka Megurine has Grade A as well.
    • Neru Akita has Grade A thigh-highs (boots), a tsundere personality, and... sadly, only a side ponytail. Disappointing, but she is the closest you'll get to Grade S when it comes to Vocaloid.
      • Rin Kagamine's new Append version bumps her up to a Grade B and a half. Hey, 54 centimeters falls right in between, so we don't know what else to call them. Isn't our job so hard?
    • Lily has Grade A with thigh-high boots, but hers are more pimped out than the rest of the Vocaloids.
    • Teto Kasane has Grade A with twin drills.
    • Iku Acme has Grade B.
    • SF-A2 miki sports a Grade C thanks to her striped socks.
    • And then Vocaloid3 pretty much cranks it up to twenty-two. Of the eleven that have been confirmed (not including the Gumi and VY 1 upgrades), five and one-half fit this trope: SeeU, Ring Suzune, Aoki Lapis, Akikoroid-chan, and Cul, plus IA, who has a one-leg version (hence the one-half). That's not even counting the Vocaloidols, of which at least several are going to follow suit.
  • Tissue-Hime, a Japanese bassist well known for his crossplay outfits of various female anime characters, often sports Zettai Ryouiki of various grades in his videos. An example can be seen here.
  • Uruha, the lead guitarist of Visual Kei band The GazettE has sported this more than once, though with booty shorts rather than skirts.
  • Sever, the lead singer of the band Sumo Cyco, has Grade B in their music video for Interceptor.
  • The K Pop Girl Group Rania has a Darker and Edgier version for their PV Dr. Feel Good.


  • The entire Duel Maid III line if collectable figures feature this trope. Every maid is dressed in a short dress with thigh stockings.
  • The Lollipop Girl doll line has loads of this. One doll sports grade B and two sport grade A in the first edition line.

Video Games

  • Dragon Age
    • Dragon Age has mage armor that certainly counts. Can also work if you get high enough boots on your rogue.
    • The entire point of Isabela's outfit in Dragon Age II (well, that and the breasts). She wears a shirt, underwear, and mid-thigh-high boots.
    • Zevran from Dragon Age Origins, as shown off quite vividly by the ending seconds of the cutscene in which he's introduced.
  • Dawn, the female lead character in Pokémon Diamond and Pearl/Platinum and the Pokémon DP anime.
  • Venus from Metal Gear Acid 2 has Zettai Ryouiki so devastating that it had to be censored for her cameo in Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops.
  • Both Kasumi and Ayane from Dead or Alive wear this for their default costumes.
  • Boktai's Sunflower Girl Zazie has Grade A Zettai Ryouiki. While not Tsundere, you don't want to be the one who wakes her up from a nap...
  • Maya Amano and Lisa Silverman, from Persona 2 also fall into this category, to some extent. As Tatsuya, there's even an option to tease Maya about it inside of the bomb shelter.
  • Persona 3
    • Yukari Takeba goes the socks-and-skirt route, and it's actually quite surprising that she never panty-shots throughout the entire game considering the length (or lack thereof) of her skirt.
    • The female main character of Persona 3 Portable personalizes her maid outfit with lacy black thigh highs. The hem of the dress is a tad too long, but the skirt often sways around while she's fighting to show off the skin, so it's an A-. Her normal outfit is also Grade C.
  • Persona 4
    • Chie Satonaka uses footwear to fight, some of which goes up past the knee. She's a serious Action Girl and takes the precaution of wearing Modesty Shorts.
    • Rise Kujikawa falls this trope perfectly as she really is wearing thigh high socks along with her school uniform. Not to mention her Moe personality and pigtails.
  • The Shadow Hearts series is fond of this. The prequel has Koudelka, the first game has sweet innocent Alice, and the third game has Elegant Gothic Lolita vampire Hildegard, all with very high stockings. German soldier Karin in the second game achieves the same effect with thigh-high boots.
  • Aqua in Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep.
  • Yuffie and Rikku's designs in Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts II, respectively, also featured it as well.
  • In the intro video of La Pucelle: Tactics, the Maiden of Light wears this.
  • Castlevania
  • Xenosaga
    • MOMO from has Zettai Ryouiki that can blow your eyeballs out through the back of your head—if you can deal with the fact that she's made of solid loli.
    • KOS-MOS has this in almost every outfit, and Shion gets it as well in Episode III.
  • Final Fantasy
    • Refia in Final Fantasy III for DS gets some killer Zettai Ryouiki if you change her job to Scholar. This also makes her a Meganekko.
    • The same goes for Scholar Artifact armor from Final Fantasy XI, when worn by any female player character or NPC. People take the job to level 60 for no other reason than to equip SCH AF. About half of the armor in the game spontaneously develops Zettai Ryouiki when equipped on a female PC. Also of note is the Novennial Dress, which even gives Tarutaru Zettai Ryouiki.
    • Marche from Final Fantasy Tactics Advance has a shorts version of this. Ritz would almost gain this trope, but not quite.
    • Serah from Final Fantasy XIII.
    • Several of the dresspheres in Final Fantasy X-2, especially Rikku's outfits.
    • Final Fantasy XII characters Penelo and Ashe, with armored boots for both. Also, the Dalmacian gaurds are a male example. In particular, Reks.
    • And another one from Final Fantasy IX: Kuja. And he's a dude.
    • Cinque, Sice and Rem in Final Fantasy Type-0, the rest of the girls score much lower.
  • Disgaea
  • Phantom Brave: Marona.
  • Female human mages in Lineage II start with this, and most of their clothing options up to 20 in level are these.
  • A good number of the skirt-wearing female soldiers in Valkyria Chronicles qualify. The most noticable are Alicia, Rosie, and Isara. Alicia is at the very least Grade S, what with her twin tails and initial Tsundere attitude (much more so in the anime adaptation).
  • From Flower, Sun, and Rain, Yayoi Hanayama has Grade A.
  • All of the rival cheer girls in Osu! Tatakae! Ouendan have Grade B.
  • This is somewhat standard for Star Ocean heroines.
    • Rena and Sophia both wear short skirts with long stockings.
    • Millie wears a slightly longer skirt than is standard for this trope, while Reimi wears an outfit that gives the illusion of a skirt.
    • Nel Zelpher, the deadly serious ninja-wizard from Star Ocean: Till the End of Time, happens to have a very short, tight-fitting skirt to go with her very tall, yet equally tight boots. That bit of thigh between them is all the skin she shows though, since she's otherwise very modestly and functionally dressed... which arguably makes it that much hotter.
    • Albel Nox from the same Star Ocean is an odd male variant. He wears a wrap skirt with waist high side slits and thigh high stockings. Fayt even calls him out on it to which Albel curtly informs him that real men wear skirts. Then again, you don't mess with a girly, skirt wearing man voiced by Crispin Freeman.
  • Mitsuki Konishi in The World Ends With You. So Zettai Ryouiki!
  • Heart Aino from Arcana Heart sports a Grade A Zettai Ryouiki.
  • Alicia from Valkyrie Profile 2.
  • A couple of Athena Asamiya's alternate outfits in KOF Maximum Impact 2 sport this look, as does Miu Kurosaki from gaiden game KoF EX 2.
  • Momohime from Muramasa the Demon Blade.
  • Mega Man Legends
    • Mega Man Legends 2: There's serious Grade A Zettai Ryouiki going on for Sera and Yuna. In Yuna's case, it even meets one requirement for Grade S.
    • On the topic of Mega Man, Mayl has Grade A, too.
    • Mega Man ZX brings us a male example, of sorts. Thetis has this look, using his long hoodie as a replacement for a skirt, and his long white socks.
    • Also Cinnamon from Mega Man X Command Mission, oddly enough.
  • Momo Karuizawa from Rival Schools sports a Grade A and Girlish Pigtails, though she's more of a Bitch in Sheep's Clothing than a Tsundere. American Tiffany Lords on the other hand, gets a hot pants + boots version of this with her new costume in Project Justice.
  • In Cartoon Network's Fusion Fall, The Powerpuff Girls have this with a Grade B in the game, yet a Grade A in official artwork.
  • Ar Tonelico 2
    • Luca and Cloche both have this in their default costumes, Luca is a Grade A, while Cloche averages to a Grade A (her skin tight boots are staggered in length, part extends under her skirt, part is Grade A and part is Grade B). Luca's school uniform has a grade A and maybe even S depending on the scenario.
    • Jacqli's maid outfit is another Grade A.
  • Many of the girls' costumes in Cross Edge have this, including Mikoto's default outfit and her Nurse Uniform. By extension, Aurica's Luca costume and Misha's Cloche costume give them the same grades as mentioned above.
  • Tales (series)
  • Noel Vermillion and Makoto Nanaya of BlazBlue. Both Grade A.
  • Golden Sun
  • The redesigned Harley Quinn in Batman: Arkham Asylum is a rare Western example of a high-end Grade A, if not Grade S.
  • .hack//LINK redesigns for Atoli and Tabbi retain their Grade A, while adding it to Subaru and BlackRose.
  • The Wood Elf Wardancers in the recent video game rendition of Blood Bowl achieve this look when they reach a high enough level (or receive the best boots in the real-time Blitz Mode). Though odds are that most people's attention will be on the massive mohawk they have, rather than their thighs.
  • Guild Wars contains a suprising ammount of Zettai Ryouiki for a Western game, in all kinds of forms: standard, hotpants, shorts, thigh-high boots... Unsuprisingly, most of the armor combinations that allow for Zettai Ryouiki belong to the Mesmer class; the best examples are the "Elite Canthan" and "Elite Kurzick" armor outfits obtainable in the Factions campaign.
    • The NPC character Evennia, leader of the Shining Blade, wears type A.
    • Many of the Stripperiffic outfits available for female elementalists feature type B and C.
    • Female Assassin armor has Canthan and Elite Luxon for grade B. Elite Luxon is a version with shorts.
  • Seth Balmore of Lost Odyssey has this, though often it's difficult to see due to camera angles.
  • Misaki from Fatal Frame 4.
  • There has been a whole H-game released under the actual title Zettai Ryouiki!, dedicated to the concept.
  • No More Heroes
    • Almost every female in the No More Heroes series has Grade A/B Zettai Ryouiki. The obvious exception is Speed Buster... thankfully.
    • In No More Heroes 2, you fight a gothic lolita named Margaret who has this. Bonus in that she has the twintails as well, though she does lack the tsundere attitude... probably. It's even mentioned in her song:

Thigh-high socks and my absolute territory
Go on and drool the Otaku cannot resist

  • Tekken
    • Using the customization options, most female characters in Tekken 6 can be be given a Class B, while Lili is able to ascend to the famous Class S.
    • Anna Williams also wore the hotpants variant for one of her costumes in Tekken Tag Tournament. Sadly, this costume hasn't been seen since then.
  • The Witch Princess from Harvest Moon: Animal Parade wears her stockings with a pair of really puffy bloomer-esque shorts.
  • Downright commonplace in the Rune Factory series, with Melody, Major Lynette, Cecilia, Yue, Colette, Carmen, Pia, and Daria wearing Grade B, and Alicia (on one side), Ganesha, the Irises, and Kuruna sporting Grade A.
  • Advance Wars: Days of Ruin has Tasha in a shorts/boots example.
  • Killer7's Ayane's Blackburn, a parody of Japanese schoolgirls, sports this look.
  • In Summon Night: Swordcraft Story 2, female protagonist Aera sports this look, as does supporting character/LesYay machine Lynn.
  • Saki and Annna from OneChanbara.
  • Fire Emblem
    • The miniskirt + long boots is a standard part of the uniform worn by the Pegasus Knight / Falcoknight / Dragon Knight ladies in the saga. Even The Ladette Vaida uses it, and she's FAR from Moe Moe. Not only them, either. Some troubadours (mounted healers) also use it, like Clarine from FE 6 and L'Arachel from FE 8.
    • Any female mounted unit, actually. This kind of makes sense when you think about it: the short skirt is more comfortable for riding, the long boots offer protection.
    • Not any female mounted unit: Natasha from FE 8 (if promoted into Valkyrie), Priscilla from FE 7 and Cecilia from FE 6 don't wear ZR. Priss's boots are too short, Cecilia's skirt is too long and the cut on it isn't high enough, and Natasha's cleric robe is excessively long as well.
    • One non-mounted example (at least, pre-promotion) is Princess Eirika from FE 8. Actually, here's another: Mia pre-promotion in FE 9/10 (after promoting to upper tier, the skirt becomes too long). Also Lachesis from FE 4, the inspiration for Eirika's design.
    • For another non-mounted example: Louise from FE 7. who is actually Clarine's mother.
    • Lyre, one of the Laguz from "Radiant Dawn", wears shorts and thigh-high stockings.
    • As does Ilyana at 2nd and 3rd tier... and Heather at 3rd tier... and Nepheenee... and the aforementioned Mia... and Mist at third tier... Ironically, in this game, the pegasus riders don't qualify because they're wearing tights under their skirts (though they still have the thigh-high boots).
  • If we listed all the modules in the Project Diva games that feature Zettai Ryouiki, we would be here all day. Highlights include: Miku's original outfit [dead link], Natural and Butterfly. Rin's Reactor and Cute Rin [dead link]. And Len's Punkish.
  • The Courtesan from Assassin's Creed Brotherhood multiplayer.
  • Touhou Project
    • Nue Houjuu is arguably the first character in the series with Zettai Ryouiki. However, Suwako Moriya from the same series has been drawn with Zettai Ryouiki in fanon.
    • Frickin' everybody has been drawn with Zettai Ryouiki in fanon. Possibly even Rinnosuke.
    • However, prior to either of those characters' debuts, Reisen Udongein Inaba appeared with Grade A Zettai Ryouiki in canon supplementary materials. (From Perfect Memento in Strictest Sense.)
  • In the 2009 remake of SaGa 2, several of the various models for the Esper characters sport this look, as well as supporting character Lin.
  • Lili Zanotto of Psychonauts has both pigtails and the Tsundere personality for Grade S. Her kneesocks however come straight between C and B.
  • Magna Carta 2 gives us Rue, who's Grade B in her battle sprite. Variant of the hot pants and skirt, as Rue wears both, but her pants go down further than her skirt.
  • The Catgirl (and another younger one) who stars in the Korean song "Greenhorn" by Lexy in the Pump It Up arcade series. The former has a Grade A Zettai Ryouiki with white stockings.
  • Cerebella and Miss Fortune from Skullgirls. Parasoul also has them in some of her alternates.
  • Valentine from Guilty Gear 2: Overture fits this somewhat. Hard to believe she is a likely copy of Justice.
  • Yoake Mae Yori Ruriiro na
    • Feena Fam Earthlight seems to have a penchant for thigh-highs stockings. She wears them under her princess gown, which unfortunately is floor length, with her school uniform (at least when she's not Off-Model), and as part of her work uniform at Trattoria Samon (which also holds true for Natsuke, Mia, and Mai).
    • Fiacca also has A-Rank Zettai Ryouiki as part of her Stripperific battle costume.
  • Iori in The iDOLM@STER wears a grade B.
    • In the anime version of The Idolmaster, several of the stage outfits have it too and Kotori sports this in her work outfit.
  • In the dress-up game Jojo's Fashion Show, you get bonus points for having boots with skirts to achieve type B.
  • A particular song from Beatmania IIDX 19 called "突撃!ガラスのニーソ姫!" (Totsugeki! Garasuno niiso hime!, direct English translation: "Attack! Knee Socks Princess of the Glass") has got some Grade B Zettai Ryouiki in the anime video.
  • Mercedes from Maple Story.
  • Phantasy Star IV: Rika is perhaps one of the great-grandmothers of this trope: she wears a black leotard (and heavy-class armor), but she wears thigh-high boots that are pretty standard from the front, but from the back, they just barely reach the hemline of her cape, making her a Class S (but only from one side).
  • In the music video of the song 'Frantic' in EZ 2 DJ, the orange-haired girl wears pink thigh-highs. Here's the music video: [2]

Visual Novels

  • Rin Tohsaka in Fate Stay Night. Let's see... 57 cm stockings: check. Double pigtail: check. Tsundere: check. Yes, Rin Tohsaka is Grade S! Rider does not have a grade as high as Rin's, but she certainly qualifies too.
  • Tsukihime
    • Sion Eltnam Atlasia from the spin-off Melty Blood packs a pair that rivals Rin's.
    • Ciel in her Seventh Holy Scripture outfit also has this.
  • Umineko no Naku Koro ni
    • Jessica definitely has this, and depending on your definition of knee socks (they stop literally just below the knee), so do all of the other girls. Even Maria. Beatrice sports Grade B in her suit from EP2.
    • Beatrice from has a whole Grade B going on when she appears in the gameboard in Turn of the Golden Witch, with an addition to her Tsundere personality.
    • The Siestas have an interesting version of this, as although their boots reach up to their thighs, and they do wear mini-skirts, said skirts are split open in the front (they wear leotard-type things underneath), effectively ruining the look.
    • Ange pretty much screams Grade S: Pigtails, short skirt, optimal thigh exposure, and she, like so many other characters in that series, is totally Tsundere.
  • Nayuki, Kaori and Shiori in Kanon. Makoto successfully attains Grade S ZR. At least a couple times.
  • Tamaki Kousaka, Sasara Kusugawa, and the Himeyuri twins in To Heart 2, all have Grade A.
  • Kyou (and Ryou, although after a while she stops wearing them) in Clannad—even when playing basketball. Kyou's power is truly without limit.
  • Miyo Takano of Higurashi no Naku Koro ni has this as part of her nurse outfit. Also from the same series, the Angel Mort outfit seems designed with Zettai Ryouiki in mind. Rena's outfit is a twist—she wears the thigh socks but her skirt is very long, which would normally disqualify her. However, sometimes she has "Zettai Ryouiki Flashes" where her thighs are visible through the skirt's long side slit, as is clearly visible in this image.
  • Every single girl in SHUFFLE!, at some point or other. Mostly in their school outfits.
  • Ameri in Tayutama is a definite Grade S in her school uniform.
  • The creators of Koihime Musou LOVE this. Almost everyone in the show/game's massive, almost all-female cast wears this.
  • Kazuha from Yosuga no Sora has Grade A.
  • As if Ace Attorney‍'‍s Ema Skye weren't cute enough already, her look in Ace Attorney Investigations features this trope.
  • Shizune Hakamichi from Katawa Shoujo has a Grade A.
  • Several outfits in Canvas 2 seem designed with this in mind. Elis' casual wear comes to mind.

Web Comics

Web Original

  • The Cheerleaders, a trio of supervillains from the Global Guardians PBEM Universe, consciously make use of this trope as part of their "Jiggle Fu" distraction powers against male opponents.
  • All OS-tans have been depicted wearing Zettai Ryouiki at some point. It is especially popular with XP-tan and Firefox-ko.
  • In the Whateley Universe, Jade has discovered this. Along with the formula. Fear her!
  • About 85 Percent of dancers in any of fan-made or official Caramelldansen Vid.
  • Almost all the girls from Roosterteeth's Pajamachievements series rock this look, most sporting either a Grade C or B, with pajamas of course.
  • Clawdeen from Monster High wears her socks at Grade B. Some background characters sport Grade C and B as well.
  • Gaia Online's Cindy Donovinh has Grade A red stockings to go with her miniskirt.
  1. Some even include a Grade S (Grade A + Tsundere + Twin Tails), which started as an In-Joke based on Rin Tohsaka of Fate/stay night
  2. Of the ones people will admit to, at least.
  3. The costume is a homage to Eve from Black Cat, whom Yami is an Expy of