When you think of horror movies, you probably picture a very “dark, and gloomy night” with heavy rainfall, as the character frantically tries to seek shelter. With the character most likely wearing a raincoat, preferably a yellow one. But why must it always be “yellow”, why not a red, blue, or even black raincoat?
Well actually, there is some history and reason behind it (if you’re interested in finding out!) If not, let’s get started with some famous usages of the yellow raincoat!
Probably one of the most famous and notable characters who first appears in the yellow raincoat is Coraline, herself. Originally the story was written as a novel by author Neil Gaiman back in 2002, but was later adapted into stop-motion in 2009 by Henry Selick. Both mediums does a fantastic job of delivering a terrifying tale, but one thing the film does exceptionally well is creating this unique character design.
Coraline’s dark blue hair matches perfectly with her oddly bright outfit. Even as we begin to meet Coraline, she doesn’t seem like the most fitting character that would wear such a bright and happy color. However, more than the character, herself, the yellow raincoat provides a different function.
Throughout the first half of the film (in the “real world”), Coraline’s bright yellow coat almost seems out of place in the grey scaled scene. But once she enters the “other world”, her bright coat blends in perfectly with the rest of the world.
This 2017 indie horror game truly shocked fans with such a captivating story. The main character, Six, wearing nothing but a simple yellow raincoat.
Throughout the game, we explore this dark and grim reality that Six has to live with. Filled with various ginormous monsters trying to eat and kill her. We quickly realize that this world is not suitable for young kids, as Six tries her best to find an escape.
Her bright attire contrats the dark and unsettling scene, making her quite easy to spot in the heavy rainfall, but in a way, also keeps her safe.
The viral 2017 horror film, also originally a novel by the one and only Stephen King, made its way into popularity with the iconic sewage scene. But one thing that most definitely caught the viewers eyes has to be that raincoat (well it was for me, at least).
Because with the It movie coming out, there have now been two characters who dressed in that same yellow raincoat. With Georgie, the frequency of yellow raincoats now becomes more of a pattern rather than another coincidence.
When Georgie first appears in the scene, there is again heavy rainfall, with an eerie force of water, leading him into the sewage hole. And again, his bright yellow raincoat helps to contrast the sinister reality that Georgie and his friends live in, which helps to add to that suspenseful feeling and mood.
Finally, 2021 brings us a brand new animated series featuring yet another character dressed in yellow attire.
However, Wonder Egg Priority is not necessarily a “horror” film, it is classified under the psychological horror genre, so I will still add it to this list. Also, although the main character, Ai Ohto’s outfit isn’t technically a “raincoat”, I just found her design’s similarity uncanny to that of Coraline’s. With both young girls, having dark blue hair while wearing a bright yellow outerwear.
Just like all three previous stories, Ai Ohto’s bright outfit definitely helps to contrast the gruesome reality that she lives in. However, compared to the previous characters, Ai Ohto’s personality actually matches her outfit, as she is a very happy and kind person throughout the series.
Credits to this amazing source, for the history of yellow raincoats! (so please check them out)
Let’s travel back to early Scotland, where fishing probably has the most influence and earliest beginnings of this sport. The “accidental yellow rainwear” was first used for Scottish fishermen to increase their visibility in the dark scene (much like all of the four characters mentioned above). In the heavy and dark rainfall, it’s very hard to see other members, so by wearing “yellow” (a color that can be used to highlight), truly helps to spot others in the gloomy setting.
Thank you so much for reading! Comment down below any other famous yellow raincoats you spotted in other series!
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damn. never realized. love this gril
Netflix’s “Dark” also has a protagonist with a yellow raincoat. The show has both horror and mystery elements.
:O I should check it out!
Yes, it's not quite considered a trope in the horror genre as of yet, but that was something I was attempting to change with my blog (see below). I'll have to check out Wonder Egg Priority, never heard of it but it would seem like it would make a good entry! (That scene also looks reminiscent of the shining but maybe that's just me seeing it out of context 🤷♂️) Thanks for the update of what came out this year!
I play little nightmares all of them
did a middle schooler write this article
I love this article! It's so interesting to think about the symbolism behind yellow raincoats in horror movies.