A kicker is, at the most basic level, one that kicks. Unsurprisingly, it's used mostly in sports contexts. It can also mean, in American informal English, “an. Sure, renting an apartment is cheaper and gives you a lot of flexibility to move around, but here's the kicker: with the money threw away renting. In lighting, what is a kicker and when should I use it? (And is it any I'd usually use the term kicker to refer to any highly off axis light which strikes.