Created By: Momochi on July 25, 2012 Last Edited By: Momochi on August 5, 2012
Troped

Involuntary Dance

People are made to dance via magic, phlebotinum, etc.

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Trope
Needs a Better Description.

When people cannot stop dancing because they are either People Puppets or under Mind Control. The villain may make the victims dance for the following purposes:

  1. Incapacitation. The dance hinders their action or renders them helpless.
  2. Playing with Puppets / Hypno Fool. Most dances are impractical, therefore their movements look foolish.
  3. Torture. Dances are exhausting.
  4. For the art. Dances are visually appealing.

Mind-Control Music often, and The Music Meister always causes this trope.

Note that a series of reflex jumps doesn't count as dancing.


Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]

[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
  • Code Geass: One of the bizarre tasks Lelouch compels some drug dealers to do for his Playing with Puppets moment.
  • tsuritama: Humans under the influence of the aliens' Mind-Control Device. This can result in Adult Fear, such as losing control of their boats and accidentally launching missiles from a battleship.
  • The Para Para Brothers from Dragon Ball GT use a stereo to cause their opponents to uncontrollably mimic their dancing, leaving them open to attack.
  • Fushigiboshi No Futagohime: Fine or Rein presses one of the three buttons on the Feather Myuugram to make it play music. Anyone standing in front of the Myuugram will be forced to dance depending on the music the Myuugram plays.
  • Ranma ½: The anime-only twins Ling-Ling & Lung-Lung's most powerful move. The twins play the Theme Tune which causes the opponent to dance uncontrollably, and while they dance Ling-Ling & Lung-Lung use the flamethrower to burn the opponent.
  • Seto no Hanayome: To stop the fight between the two Yakuza groups, the mermaids Sun & Lunar sing a song that causes everyone to dance uncontrollably. For 50 solid hours.
  • Shugo Chara!: Dancing Dream uses Hypno Ray to organize a group of sleeping Dance Battlers.
  • Rave Master: The villain's girlfriend asks for a certain music to be played that makes all the males dance so that she can fight with Elie uninterrupted.
  • Jewelpet Twinkle☆: "Tinkle Tinkle Sanbala" is a magic spell that lets everyone dance samba.
  • Demashita! Powerpuff Girls Z: A Saturday Night Fever-esque monster uses Hypno Ray to cause people in the dance hall to dance in sync with him.
  • Stitch!: Experiment 258 has gained this ability. Also, after the failure of the week, Delia punishes Hämsterviel by hanging him with thread and forcing him to dance.
  • Zatch Bell!: Yopopo can cause the opponent to mimic his dancing by using his spell, Shin Yopopoi Topopoi Supopopoi.
  • Flint the Time Detective: Hanihani is a clay doll creature with this ability.
  • Zettai Muteki Raijin-Oh: There is a Monster of the Week which affects people and the Humongous Mecha alike.
  • Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch: Lanhua's song.
  • One Piece: Brook seems to have gained this ability. He caused the Bobardment Squad of the New Fishman Pirates to dance around as if they were at a festival.
  • Princess Tutu: Drosselmeyer's Author Powers are most apparent when Tutu ascends to the author's universe and ends up becoming a marionette which dances ballet at his will.
  • Ah! My Goddess: Mara's Weaksauce Weakness is rock music, which causes the demoness to dance uncontrollably.
  • Pokémon: Teeter Dance, which in the games just confuses the target, consistently has this effect except in "Pikachu's Big Sparking Search".
  • Mahoujin Guru Guru has items and spells which have this power.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
  • In the first issue of Brit, the villain Master Mind takes control of hundreds of people on a stretch of highway and forces them to dance.
  • Zita the Spacegirl: Piper's eponymous flute can make listeners dance themselves unconscious.
  • Super-Hip (DC Comics) magically acquires an electric guitar which causes whoever hears it to dance uncontrollably whenever he plays rock and roll.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
  • In Beetlejuice, the Maitlands try to scare off the Deetzes and their dinner guests by possessing them and forcing them to dance and lip-sync to "Day-O".
  • The Mask. The title character sings the "Cuban Pete" song and everyone (except for Lieutenant Kellaway) starts dancing.
  • In Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius, the aliens make the kids' parents dance (badly) via mind control devices.
  • The main characters in A Simple Wish are forced to dance by the villain.
  • Legend. While Lily is trapped in Darkness' lair, he sends a dancing mannequin in a black dress to seduce her. The mannequin Mind Controls her into dancing with it, eventually transforming her with an Evil Costume Switch/Evil Makeover.
  • The Lair of the White Worm. Lady Sylvia Marsh is the vampire priestess of the title monster. When she hears a particular kind of music she starts dancing (a reference to how snakes are supposed to be charmed by music).
  • Robots: Robin William's character Fender uses a dance as his special "attack sequence", which causes the evil robots to join in.
  • Toy Story 3: Jessie has the Spanish version of the Theme Tune played, so that Buzz's Spanish personality movement shows up and starts dancing paso doble with her.
    Buzz: I don't know what came over me.
  • Ella Enchanted: Ella is "blessed" with the gift of obedience. Because of this, in the film version of the story, she is compelled to sing and dance for the entertainment of some giants after some of them yell out for her to do so.
  • It happens to Pinocchio in the movie Pinocchio and the Emperor of the Night, an unofficial sequal to the Disney movie. The circus puppet-master, Puppetino, plays an organ grinder that make Pinocchio dance and turn back into a puppet.
  • In Disney's Aladdin, Jasmine is forced to dance by Jafar after he has acquired all his power from stealing the Genie.
  • Shrek Forever After: Pied Piper's flute has a dial that can be set to any known creature and makes them dance uncontrollably when he plays.
  • Hocus Pocus: The party-goers are cursed to dance until they die.
  • In A Simple Wish, Claudia uses her magic to force Anabel and Murray to dance.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live-Action TV]] [[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
  • Hans Christian Andersen's fairy tale "The Red Shoes", where a girl is punished for her vain pride over her beautiful shoes by having the shoes force her to dance uncontrollably.
  • The Brothers Grimm's tale "The Jew Among Thorns" includes a fiddle which compels people to dance when they hear it played.
  • Harry Potter: The Dancing Feet Spell (Tarantallegra).
  • In a Homer Price short story everyone in town gets infected with a patter song-and-dance and has to start singing & dancing it. Homer realies the only cure is another song - one by Mark Twain ("Punch Brothers, Punch!"), which one forgets as soon as one tells it to someone else.
  • Happens to someone in Roger Zelazny's Manna from Heaven.
  • Happens in the Jiggy McCue series.
  • The end of Nikolai Gogol's "The Lost Letter": the only thing that remains following his ordeal is the fact that once a year, on the date he met the group of demons, his wife has an uncontrollable urge to dance and does, with no way of stopping her.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Music]]
  • Do It Again by The Chemical Brothers: Two brothers use the hypnotic music to help them acquire money from a bank.
  • You're Gonna Go Far, Kid by The Offspring: A plant goddess gives the peasant a magical guitar, with which he causes a scarecrow and townsfolk to start dancing uncontrollably. When he becomes selfish, the plant goddess punishes him by first forcing him to dance alone to the music, then dragging him into the ground through a whirlpool.
  • Where Them Girls At by David Guetta: The video shows giant bubbles which contain the song's beats, drifting across the streets of Los Angeles. When people burst the bubbles, they start dancing uncontrollably.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Mythology/Folklore]]
  • Norwegian elves can teach to a fiddler the Elf-king's tune, which can make old and young, and even inanimate objects, dance. It cannot be stopped unless the player plays the tune backwards, or that someone comes behind him and cuts the strings of his fiddle.
  • The Strömkarl has eleven different measures, to ten of which alone people may dance; the eleventh belongs to the night spirit his host. If any one plays it, tables and benches, cans and cups, old men and women, blind and lame, even the children in the cradle, begin to dance.
  • In Ireland, it was believed that fairy changelings often produced a set of small bagpipes from under the clothes and played dance music upon them, till the inmates of the cottage dropped with exhaustion from the effects of the step dancing they were compelled to engage in.
  • In "Kate Crackernuts", Kate discovers that the sick prince is being forced by The Fair Folk to ride to their hill and dance to exhaustion every night; she rescues him.
  • The Fair Folk's dances are very, very, very dangerous. Mortals who see them are often caught up in the dancing and are unable to stop. The lucky ones don't crumble into dust when it finally ends. One folk explanation of tuberculous was that its victims were forced to dance every night at the fairy hills, and wasted away for the lack of sleep.
  • In the Swedish legend of the Hårgadance a mysterious fiddler turned up one day in the village of Hårga during a celebration and started playing a song on his violin that made everyone dance enthusiastically. Too late, the people realized that the man, who they now saw had a goat's leg, was the Devil himself. They were unable to stop dancing and kept doing so while the fiddler led them up the nearby Hårgamountain. There, he kept playing until everyone had been killed and their bodies torn to bits by the intense dancing. The top of Hårgamountain is still flat to this day because of the wild dance.
  • Sir Thomas Wallace of Craigie and Walter Whiteford come across a house in which the wife is brewing ale. The wife serves Sir Thomas a drink, however she is terrified of the Laird who looks like the Devil and refuses him entry. The Laird responds by taking a "pin" and reciting a charm he placed it above the doorway, resulting in a spell that forced the wife to dance and sing uncontrollably. The workers return from the fields and they too are in turn bewitched as they pass under the "pin", until the Laird removes it and is invited to drink by the relieved householders.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
  • Dungeons & Dragons
    • "Otto's Irresistible Dance" spell.
    • Grigs can play a tune on their fiddles that causes other creatures to dance uncontrollably.
    • Each week the korred have a holiday where they dance and play music. Anyone who interrupts the dance must start dancing themselves, losing 1-4 Hit Points per minute until they die, are restrained or the korred leave the area.
  • The Masque of Slaanesh in Warhammer/40k is a daemonette of Slaanesh who angered her master and was cursed to dance for all eternity. Anybody who sees her dancing is forced to dance along, even to the point of dying from exhaustion.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Theater]]
  • In The Magic Flute, Papageno's magic bells cause Monostatos and his servants to stop attempting to capture Papageno and Pamina and start dancing.
  • Giselle: A girl who is jilted and dies before her wedding night is turned into a wili and seeks revenge upon men by dancing them to death.
  • Some musical adaptations of The Wizard of Oz contain the song "The Jitterbug", during which The Jitterbug puts a magical influence on the characters, forcing them to dance the Jitterbug frenetically.
  • Hunter × Hunter: In both musicals, Hisoka uses his Bungee Gum strings to make the characters dance.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
  • Space Channel 5: The whole plot is about the villains getting people into and Ulala rescuing them from this trope.
  • Klonoa Beach Volleyball: Joka's Special Attack, Chaotic Dance; after he hits the ball, Joka's opponents will suddenly start dancing, and eventually trip.
  • Puyo Puyo: Panotti's flute.
  • Dragon Quest series has an ability called Entice Dance / Lure Dance / Sultry Dance that causes the target to uncontrollably break out into a jig. Play VIII and Monsters: Joker (or newer) to see how it works.
  • Darkstalkers: Lilith's Super Move, Gloomy Puppet Show; Lilith tosses a top hat at her foe, if it contacts them, they find themselves on a platform, dancing helplessly as Lilith's player taps buttons.
  • Lost Saga: Capoeira's "Atabeque" makes your opponent dance towards you.
  • League of Legends: Sona's ultimate is a wave of sound that causes targets to dance uncontrollably.
  • Ratchet & Clank: A floating disco ball that causes every enemy on-screen to dance uncontrollably is a standard weapon.
  • Final Fantasy X-2: Yuna takes back her Garment Grid. However, as the Grid has recorded the emotions of the previous user, she finds herself dancing uncontrollably, and overcome by someone else's excitement.
  • Evil Genius: Eli Barracuda plays a boombox with hypnotic suggestion that causes people around him to uncontrollably break out into dance.
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim: "The Dancer's flute" is said to have this power.
  • Mega Man Star Force: Cygnus Wing attacks the Amaken Science Centre causing people to dance uncontrollably in the Space Simulation, with the limited oxygen supply in the space suits threatening the lives of his victims.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Original]] [[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
  • The Penguins of Madagascar: When King Julien's "groove" is magically transferred to Skipper, he starts dancing uncontrollably. Later he becomes a Dance Battler.
  • The Simpsons
    • Duffless: In a Dream Sequence Bart wins first prize at a Science Fair with a Go-Go Ray which makes people dance.
    • The Debarted: Bart puts pieces of metal in Principal Skinner's shoes, then uses magnets under the school stage to make him move & dance around.
    • Last Tap Dance in Springfield: Professor Frink puts a clap-activated device in Lisa's dancing shoes to give her dancing skills. But when the audience at her dance recital applauds her dancing she dances more, and they applaud more, and she dances more-more, and they applaud more-more, etc.
  • On the Classic Disney Short "Trick or Treat", a witch casts a spell on Donald Duck after he swallows the key to the pantry where he hid all the Halloween candy. The spell made his feet dance and kick in an attempt to remove the key, while the witch accompanied on the banjo.
  • Kim Possible has an episode where she and Ron end up hypnotised and end up being ordered to dance by Señor Senior Junior.
  • In the Porky Pig Looney Tunes short The Wearing of the Grin, Porky is forced to put on some green shoes which make him dance through a nightmare landscape.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: The Cutie Pox is an illness which causes random cutie marks to appear all over the ponies' bodies, forcing them to continually perform the talents that came with them. One of the marks which afflicted Apple Bloom is a red shoe (representing tap dancing), a Shout-Out to "The Red Shoes."
  • Pinky and the Brain: When a triggering noise was heard by one of the titular characters, they would go into an uncontrollable dance ("I'm a little teapot" for Brain when he heard a tinkly bell, and a stereotypical Russian Squat-dance for Pinky when he heard a gong).
  • The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3: The Doom Dancer Music Box made anyone who could hear it dance uncontrollably. This became a plot point as Koopa, who had a cold, couldn't hear it and thus wasn't affected when Bully tried it on him.
  • The Smurfs has a magic flute and Smurfette's dancing shoes.
  • Darkwing Duck: Comet Guy has a Weaksauce Weakness: the sound of a bell makes him dance, and he cannot stop dancing until he hears a whistle.
  • Phineas and Ferb: In "Out of Toon", Doofenshmirtz attempted to create a ray that would dry his clothes after his dryer broke, but instead made one that made anything hit with it dance.
  • Motorcity: This is one of the first things Tooley does with the people wearing Kane Safety Suits. Later, this happens to him when he's in a suit that was hacked by the Burners.
  • George of the Jungle (the 2008 series): Every time Ape hears the sound of Mitch's bongos, he dances uncontrollably which results in mass insanity and the destruction of their Tree House.
  • An episode of Make Way For Noddy has Sly and Gobbo sell the inhabitants of Toyland a dust which everyone puts on their feet that makes them dance whenever Sly and Gobbo play music from a box. This allows them to commit crimes in Toyland while everyone is dancing.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Real Life]]
  • This is actually a real phenomenon.
  • This suggestion is common in stage hypnosis.
[[/folder]]


Community Feedback Replies: 43
  • July 25, 2012
    AP
    • While nothing supernatural was going on, there was an episode of Dinosaurs in which the son was involuntarily doing the mating dance anytime he was around a girl he liked.
  • July 25, 2012
    Korodzik
  • July 25, 2012
    Quantumawsome
    This trope seems to be just a smaller version of TheMusicMeister. We could just expand that trope.
  • July 25, 2012
    randomsurfer

    The following are non-magical.
    • The Simpsons
      • In a Dream Sequence Bart wins first prize at a Science Fair with a Go-Go Ray which makes people dance.
      • Bart puts pieces of metal in Principal Skinner's shoes, then uses magnets under the school stage to make him move & dance around.
      • Professor Frink puts a clap-activated device in Lisa's dancing shoes to give her dancing skills. But when the audience at her dance recital applauds her dancing she dances more, and they applaud more, and she dances more-more, and they applaud more-more, etc.
  • July 25, 2012
    Momochi
    ^^ The Music Meister is a specific form of Musical Episode. This trope is meant to be a specific form of People Puppets & Mind Manipulation.
  • July 25, 2012
    TonyG
    • In Beetlejuice, the Maitlands try to scare off the Deetzes and their dinner guests by possessing them and forcing them to dance and lip-sync to "Day-O".
    • On the Classic Disney Short "Trick or Treat", a witch casts a spell on Donald Duck after he swallows the key to the pantry where he hid all the Halloween candy. The spell made his feet dance and kick in an attempt to remove the key, while the witch accompanied on the banjo.
  • July 25, 2012
    abk0100
    ^^Actually, The Music Meister is a character trope - that's why it starts with "The."
  • July 26, 2012
    triassicranger
    Film

    Live Action Television
    • An episode of MI High has a villainess make her dancers wear vests which makes them do her will. Oscar ends up putting one of these on and ends up being ordered to dance around a room until Carrie gets it off him.
    • Mighty Morphin Power Rangers episode "Different Drum" features a monster who controls people to dance.
    • Power Rangers Wild Force also had an episode where a monster controls people to dance with a flute.

    Western Animation

    • Kim Possible has an episode where she and Ron end up hypnotised and end up being ordered to dance by Senor Senior Junior.
  • July 26, 2012
    Arivne
    Western Animation
    • In the Porky Pig Looney Tunes short The Wearing of the Grin, Porky is forced to put on some green shoes which make him dance through a nightmare landscape.
  • July 26, 2012
    JobanGrayskull
    This is actually a real phenomenon.

    Additionally, there is a creepy pasta story, "The Song and Dance Man," that has this as its major plot.
  • July 26, 2012
    isk2837
    Harry Potter fanfic This Means War has Harry play a prank on the Weasley boys which involves magically forcing them to sing and dance in front of the school to Y.M.C.A.
  • July 26, 2012
    DragonQuestZ
    • The main characters in A Simple Wish are forced to dance by the villain.
  • July 26, 2012
    nielas
    Live Action Television:
    • One episode of Supernatural featured a pair of cursed ballet shoes. Once you put them on, you could not stop dancing and would dance faster and faster until your ankles snapped and your feet would be torn from your body. Even more insidious, just being near the shoes made you want to put them on.
  • July 26, 2012
    Dacilriel
    The dancing feet spell from Harry Potter is called Tarantallegra.
  • July 26, 2012
    X2X
    Video Games
    • The Dancing devil enemy from Dragon Quest VIII and both Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker titles possesses an ability that causes the target to uncontrollably break out into a jig for a few turns.
  • July 27, 2012
    Arivne
    Film
  • July 27, 2012
    rodneyAnonymous
    (Live Action TV) In the That Mitchell And Webb Look S1E3 sketch "The Green Clarinet", a mysterious stranger gives Alan an instrument that makes people sing and dance... and reveal embarrassing truths about themselves.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e7aaw4g2tJo
  • July 27, 2012
    MrRuano
    • Psycho Mantis managed to accidentally discover this power in The Last Days Of Foxhound. Later, when the group is assigned to Shadow Moses, Mantis uses this to control every single troop they have available.
  • July 28, 2012
    Arivne
    Live Action TV
    • The Twilight Zone TOS episode "A Piano in the House". A player piano had the ability to bring out the inner personality of a person listening to its music. One of the people affected secretly loved to dance, so she danced along to the music.
  • July 28, 2012
    etewis
    another anime/manga example is in Rave Master. The villain's girlfriend asks for a certain music to be played that makes all the males dance so that she can fight with Elie uninterrupted
  • July 29, 2012
    electronshock
    Happens to someone In Roger Zelazny's Manna from Heaven
  • July 30, 2012
    Arivne
    Film
    • The Lair Of The White Worm. Lady Sylvia Marsh is the vampire priestess of the title monster. When she hears a particular kind of music she starts dancing (a reference to how snakes are supposed to be charmed by music).

    Tabletop Games (ahem)
    • Dungeons And Dragons
      • Each week the korred have a holiday where they dance and play music. Anyone who interrupts the dance must start dancing themselves, losing 1-4 Hit Points per minute until they die, are restrained or the korred leave the area.
  • July 30, 2012
    LordCirce
    Film
    • Robots: Robin William's character Fender uses a dance as his special "attack sequence", which causes the evil robots to join in.
    Anime
    • One Piece: Brook seems to have gained this ability. He caused the Bobardment Squad of the New Fishman Pirates to dance around as if they were at a festival.
  • July 30, 2012
    NightNymph
    • Buffy The Vampire Slayer: In the episode "Once More With Feeling," this is one of the main effects of the demon Sweet's power. Almost all of the characters from major to bit part are compelled to dance (and sing) at some point in the episode, sometimes to fatal results.

    • Ella Enchanted: Ella is "blessed" with the gift of obedience. Because of this, in the film version of the story, she is compelled to sing and dance for the entertainment of some giants after some of them yell out for her to do so.
  • July 30, 2012
    MorganWick
    I think this has happened to either Wonder Woman or at least one of the X-Women, I'm not sure.
  • July 31, 2012
    Momochi
    ^ I'll try searching. Is it from an animation?

    Could anyone confirm whether Pinocchio has ever been caught in this trope?
  • July 31, 2012
    LordCirce
    It happens to Pinocchio in the movie Pinocchio And The Emperor Of The Night, an unofficial sequal to the Disney movie. The circus puppet-master, Puppetino, plays an organ grinder that make Pinocchio dance and turn back into a puppet.
  • July 31, 2012
    piscula
    In disney's Aladdin, Jasmine is forced to dance by Jafar after he has acquired all his power from stealing the Genie
  • July 31, 2012
    LeeM
    Comic Books: In Zita The Spacegirl Piper's eponymous flute can make listeners dance themselves unconscious.
  • August 1, 2012
    piscula
    I think this trope is looking good, I added a hat for you.
  • August 1, 2012
    Momochi
    Thanks piscula, and thanks guys. Now the description is needing more help... :)
  • August 1, 2012
    TheNinth
    Fairy Tale: in the Grimm Brothers' version of Snow White, the wicked stepmother is punished by being forced to wear red-hot iron shoes and dance herself to death at Snow White's wedding.
  • August 1, 2012
    Momochi
    ^ I'm not sure if that fits the trope, I mean nothing magical is going on, and the main point of the punishment is the heat not the fatigue from dancing.
  • August 1, 2012
    robinjohnson
    In the Star Trek episode "Plato's Stepchildren" this happens to the crew, resulting in one of the first interracial kisses on US television.
  • August 1, 2012
    Doxiedame
    ^^ Perhaps this could be expanded to include things like the above example and maybe something that's seen in westerns. You know, with someone shooting the ground and demanding that the victim "Dance for me!"
  • August 1, 2012
    KZN02
    Motorcity: This is one of the first things Tooley does with the people wearing Kane Safety Suits. Later, this happens to him when he's in a suit that was hacked by the Burners.
  • August 1, 2012
    randomsurfer
    ^^That's Bullet Dancing.
  • August 2, 2012
    captainsandwich
    I think we have this trope. see The Music Meister
  • August 2, 2012
    Momochi
    This trope is what a body/mind manipulator would invoke, along with "bark like a dog" and Kneel Before Zod. One person who has lost control of their limbs is not enough to make a Musical Episode (they're not even singing), although I can say that this is a Super Trope of The Music Meister.
  • August 2, 2012
    LordCirce
    The Music Meister also specifically requires that the people affected have to break into song, not simply dance, to be invoked.
  • August 3, 2012
    Momochi
  • August 5, 2012
    triassicranger
    An episode of Make Way For Noddy has Sly and Gobbo sell the inhabitants of Toyland a dust which everyone puts on their feet that makes them dance whenever Sly and Gobbo play music from a box. This allows them to commit crimes in Toyland while everyone is dancing.
  • August 5, 2012
    Momochi
    Thanks! Now I'm launching this!

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=9usb1pt6573t26zw66pjrpev