What does the expression 'Shades off' mean?

The context is: 'I am nervous. Shades off!'

I have searched the definition in different dictionaries, but I could not find anything appropriate. This phrase is taken from the movie "Battleship" (see subtitles - around 300), it is used two times.

  • 1
    Is more context possible? Short of some slang usage, all that comes to mind is "take off your sunglasses".
    – user3169
    Feb 29, 2016 at 5:30
  • Maybe you misheard someone telling (another nervous) someone to "shake it off!" Feb 29, 2016 at 6:22
  • "shades off" was recently asked about here. Perhaps it's some new slang going around. It would help to know exactly who is using it, and perhaps asking those sources where they picked it up. Feb 29, 2016 at 6:51

1 Answer 1


I haven't seen the movie, but found a very-partial-script online (no character names).

"Shades" is a term for "sunglasses" in this context. The notion is that wearing sunglasses while being introduced among international military leaders doesn't show the right level of respect for that setting.

Announcer: "And now as we prepare to embark in this outstanding..."

Someone(Hopper?): "I'm nervous."

Someone Else: "Shades off."

Announcer: "...I would like the commanding officers to come to the stage."

People are being called to the stage, and presumably the "Hopper" character has not taken off the sunglasses yet. So he has to be told again more forcefully:

Announcer: "A special acknowledgment to Commander Stone Hopper, US Navy...who along with his outstanding crew and ship had the highest overall rating last year."

Someone Else: "Shades off, Hopper!"

This is a very cliché way for a movie of that type to 'show' instead of 'tell' us how rebellious and raw this person's talent is.

  • Remember the universal movie truth: sunglasses = cool
    – Easy Tiger
    Feb 29, 2016 at 11:59

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