Penelope: Boy, am I sleepy.A tactic mostly seen in Western Animation: The villain usually sneaks up behind the target and throws a large burlap sack over her head and carries her off to his hideout; this usually happens to a Damsel in Distress or Snooping Little Kid. The target is typically female, but it can happen to male characters, just not as often. Not to be confused with Beat Bag and Bag of Holding. Somewhat related to Thief Bag, Carpet-Rolled Corpse.
Hooded Claw: Good, it's time you hit the sack... [evil laugh] literally!
Hooded Claw: Good, it's time you hit the sack... [evil laugh] literally!
— The Perils of Penelope Pitstop, "Big Bagdad Danger"
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Anime & Manga
- A Lupin III (Red Jacket) episode had Moroccan insurgents capture both Lupin and Zenigata by shoving bags over their entire bodies. While they're stuck in the bags and tossed into a truck to the training camp, Inspector Zenigata realizes that Lupin is next to him, and tries to arrest him through the two sacks.
- In the 12th episode of Lupin III (Green Jacket) Lupin stuffs Fujiko in a sack after he ties her up and gags her for pulling a gun on him when she tries to keep him from taking a a tiny golden statue from her.
- Fuu is captured in one of the last episodes of Samurai Champloo for a prostitute smuggling ring.
- In Bleach, Grimmjow transports Orihime this way so he can use her to heal Ichigo. Rurichiyo Kasumiōji is also captured this way.
- In the Pokémon episode "A Friend in Deed", Jessie and James actually capture Pikachu. In "The Path to the Pokémon League", they capture a Sandshrew.
- One Piece:
- Government agents try to capture crew member Robin. Little do they know, that they actually caught her fake.
- Their mermaid friend Keimi is captured by bounty hunter Peterman so he could sell her to an auction house.
- In the seventh episode of Vision of Escaflowne, Hitomi is kidnapped by some Gekkos so that their king could have her for his bride.
- In the second episode of Sherlock Hound, Professor Moriarty captures Polly, a girl who had stolen a rare jewel from him earlier.
- In the first episode of .hack//Quantum, Sakuya is captured by a rival team.
- In episode 59 of Sonic X, Vector the crocodile kidnaps Cream the rabbit because of misunderstanding her mother's orders. Cosmo is also captured because she wanted to see what he was up to.
- In chapter 24 of Natsume's Book of Friends, Matoba's youkai attempt this to Natsume, but fails when Natsume kicks them and Natori interferes.
- In one chapter of the Ranma ˝ manga, Genma Satome prevents his wife Nodoka from seeing Ranma turn into a girl by.
- In Osamu Tezuka's Cleopatra (1970) Apollodoria delivers Cleopatra to Julius Caesar by rolling the Queen into a ball, stuffing her inside a sack, and ties a rope around the mouth to ensure she doesn't escape.
- In the 24th episode of Deltora Quest, the Grey Guards capture Prin the Kin, intending to eat her later.
- In the first episode of Aesthetica of a Rogue Hero, Akatsuki brings Myuu to his world on the request of her father, the Demon King.
- In the eighth episode of Fuuun Ishin Dai Shogun Ryouma's friends Verbeck and Glover do this to Kiriko after he wins her in a game of rock, paper, scissors.
- In the 19th episode of Space Dandy, this is how Dr. Gel and his assistant Bea bring Boo Bies waitress Honey to his hideout.
- In episode 26 of Megaman NT Warrior Axess, Anetta is abducted by Mrs.Yuri from her laboratory, she is later found by Lan and Chaud tied in a sack in a warehouse.
- In episode 35 of Urusei Yatsura Ran grabs and ties up Lum to get her out of the way so she can suck out Ataru's youth to get her revenge on Lum, later her cousin Jeriten finds her locked up in the school's utility closet tied in a sack.
- In episode 48 of Princess Knight after saving Princess Sapphire from some pirates Captain Blood knocks her out and stuffs her in a sack, he then delivers her to the X-Union for reward money.
- In Flash Comics #87, Diana Lance (from Black Canary) and Johnny Thunder are captured by gangsters. Johnny is thrown off a cliff while Black Canary is thrown into a dungeon.
- In G.I. Joe issue #21, "Silent Interlude", Storm Shadow kidnaps Scarlett.
- In one issue of The Spirit, Ellen Dolan is kidnapped by gangsters.
- A teenage Selina Kyle in Catwoman Vol 2 #0 "Cat Shadows" is kidnapped after she had discovered information about faked inspection reports. The school administer then tries to drown her after tying her in the bag, but she manages to break free.
- In the first story of Comic Cavalcade #1, Wonder Woman is captured by Nazis while in her civilian garb.
- In Calvin and Hobbes: The Series, the titular duo is captured by Dr. Brainstorm.
- In A Certain Crazy Christmas Special, Bad Santa kidnaps girls with his sack. The sack also doubles as a Bag of Holding and Power Nullifier.
- In the DiC-dub based fic "Zoisite is Kidnapped", Neflyte and Jedite teleport into Zoycite and Malachite's castle and take Zoycite this way just as she's coming out of the shower.
- Jeff and his gnomes put Pacifica into one after they kidnap her in Gravity Falls Deep Woods. It doesn't prevent her to escape and kick their butts offscreen a few minutes later.
- In Lord Black's resurgence, redemption and revenge Harry stops several men who kidnapped Ragnok's granddaughter in this fashion.
Films — Animation
- Captain Hook brings Jane to Never Land in Return To Never Land by gagging her and stuffing her in a sack. She manages to break free on her own, but is instantly caught and put back in.
- The Aristocats
Rougefort: LOOK OUT FOR THE—(Edgar captures the cats)—sack.
- The Great Mouse Detective. Professor Rattigan sends his bat-henchman Fidget with a list of items he needs for his Evil Plan, including tools, uniforms, clockwork gears, and the daughter of the Kidnapped Scientist (to ensure his cooperation). Fidget ends up shoving all of them in the same bag.
- In Rise of the Guardians, Jack Frost is kidnapped this way by Santa's yetis.
- Lock, Shock, and Barrel do this to the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus in The Nightmare Before Christmas.
- In Megamind, Minion throws a bag of kidnapping over Roxanne's face.
- A fairly odd case is in the second Care Bears movie; the movie's villain is Dark Heart, a powerful, evil magical being with shapeshifting powers who aims to capture the Care Bears. However, despite his immense power, his preferred method of doing so is a fairly unremarkable brown sack. It's even sillier when he keeps using it throughout the whole movie.
- In Tangled, the Stabbington Brothers attempt to use a sack to kidnap Rupunzel when they hear how valuable her gift of magic hair is. However it doesn't go as well as planned when Mother Gothel intervenes.
Films — Live-Action
- In Borat, the title character attempts to marry Pamela Anderson by shoving her into a bag and trying to run off with her, an example of "marriage by capture". He doesn't get far, but hey, he tried.
- In Casino Royale (1967), Vesper (Ursula Andress) steps out of the casino and two waiting thugs throw a bag over her and carry her off. Evelyn (Peter Sellers) steps out a moment later, looking for her.
Evelyn: [to doorman] You haven't by chance seen a young lady in a green dress, have you?
Doorman: Now let me see, sir...would that be a lady with a black bag over her head being manhandled by two unsavory gentlemen?
- In Looney Tunes: Back in Action, Kate Houghton (Jenna Elfman) is kidnapped by Bob Smith (Goldberg) while in France.
- In the original The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974) Drayton Sawyer kidnaps Sally after knocking her out, then brings her back to their house in a sack.
- In The Mangler Reborn: Hadley, under the influence of "The Mangler", kidnaps Jamie, intending to feed her to the titular monster.
- In Ruthless People, Barbra (Bette Midler) is kidnapped by Ken and Sandy Kessler for ransom money while wearing Donald Duck masks. But Barbra doesn't know her husband doesn't want to rescue her because he's having an affair.
- In X-Men, after Magneto renders Rogue unconscious by throwing an object at her with his powers, Toad kidnaps her.
- Guardians of the Galaxy. Bounty hunters Rocket Raccoon and Groot throw a huge sack over Peter Quill despite all the high-tech sci-fi weaponry being used in their Męlée ŕ Trois.
- In "Iiya Muromets and Nightingale the Robber" Alyonuska is kidnapped this way by some bandits while walking in the woods.
- In "All Tied Up (1993)" Brian (Zach Galligan) does this to Linda (Teri Hatcher) as revenge for when she and her friends abducted him and tied him to a bed for weeks.
- The Force Awakens. Unkar Plutt's thugs throw a sack over BB-8. Of course given that he's a very small droid, it's easier than other examples of this trope.
- In The Hobbit, the dwarves are captured by the trolls, and then are stacked by the fire as the trolls argue about what to do to them.
- In Sidhe Devil, Swana Weiss is captured while disguised as Teleri Obeldon.
- In the Swedish childrens' mystery Ture Sventon i Stockholm (published as Tam Sventon And The Silver Plate Gang in English), Ture Sventon and his assistant Omar capture several members of the criminal gang using their "night sacks", which are noted as invaluable tools of private investigators.
- In a non-villainous example, the TunFaire police from the Garrett, P.I. series use large sacks to restrain violent criminals, probably because the straitjacket hasn't been invented there yet.
- Some versions of The Wolf and the Seven Young Kids have the wolf catch six of the seven kids in a sack rather than swallowing them whole when they let him in thinking he was their mother.
- Castle: During a CIA-related episode, the CIA keeps doing this to the good guys. Apparently, the location of their underground headquarters are classified. God only knows why the CIA isn't going through normal, legal channels instead of randomly kidnapping cops of the street at gunpoint. Seriously.
- The same thing happens in Person of Interest, except the secret government agencies usually plan to make the victim disappear permanently after interrogation.
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Happens to Dawn when she is abducted by the Puppet Minions in the Musical Episode. We don't see her actually in the sack, though, as she wakes up on a pool table completely sackless.
- In the Titus episode "Deprogramming Erin", Christopher Titus and his brother Dave do this to his girlfriend Erin after luring her outside in an attempt to bring them back together after she broke up with him.
- In the McMillan & Wife episode "The Fine Art of Staying Alive", Sally McMillan is kidnapped this way by two thugs after being knocked out with chloroform.
- In the Supernatural episode "Devil May Care" (S09, Ep02), a demon sneaks up behind Tracy and puts a bag over her head. And in "The Devil You Know" Crowley captures another demon by throwing a bag marked with a devil's trap over his head, then whaling on him with a crowbar.
- Inverted in the old '60's Batman series, where the Joker's henchmen break the Penguin out of prison this way, and for some reason, didn't let him out until they got back to their hideout. (Think the Joker was mad at them? The Penguin wasn't very happy either.)
- Henry Danger. Used consensually to prevent Mrs. Sharpen from knowing where the Mann Cave was located when Captain Mann reluctantly agreed to have a Valentine's Dinner with her in "My phony Valentine".
- Game of Thrones. In "Beyond the Wall", our heroes do this to a wight they plan to take back as proof of the Zombie Apocalypse. It's not happy about it, and spends the entire time thrashing and snarling under the bag.
- In Bloodborne the player can be trapped in one by a certain enemy that will conveniently transport you to a new location.
- In Pokémon Colosseum you first meet your sidekick, Rui, when you rescue her from two thugs who have kidnapped her in this fashion.
- In Tomb Raider (2013) Lara Croft is captured this way by a hermit after washing up on an island and your first actual gameplay is breaking out of the bag.
- In The Other Side Tower Of Souls an illustration in a book depicts one of the two alchemists who built the title structure carrying such a bag.
- In Anna's Quest a ghost named Joringel, if asked what he's doing in the witch's tower, mentions that she reportedly carried his wife Jorinde off in a sack and he was captured while looking for her.
- Lampshaded in Along Came Jones by The Coasters (among others).
Salty Sam was tryin' to stuff Sweet Sue in a burlap sack
He said, "If you don't give me the deed to your ranch
I'm gonna throw you on the railroad tracks!"
- Girl Genius: Sanaa tries to kidnap Gilgamesh Wulfenbach in this fashion, and gives the bag to Othar. Unfortunately she had never actually seen Gil, so, well...
Boris: You found him?
Othar: But of course! Allow me to present Gilgamesh Wulfenbach—
[removes bag and sees Tarvek]
Othar: —master of disguise!
[resigned aside glance from Tarvek]
- In Rescuing Dara, the eponymous Dara is kidnapped in this manner.
- Clover Firelight of Yet Another Fantasy Gamer Comic gets kidnapped like this at least once.
- The Nostalgia Critic:
- In the ConBravo d20 Live session for 2012, the party stuffing people into a sack (usually after being knocked out by Mike "Birdman" Dodd's character Jarl the Mighty) ended up becoming a Running Gag.
- In The Simpsons' interpretation of the Joan of Arc legend, Groundskeeper Willie stuffs Joan (Lisa) into a sack, after which he proclaims himself the greatest hero in English history for doing so.
- On The Perils of Penelope Pitstop, the Hooded Claw does this to Penelope in at least one episode.
- This has happened to Daphne of Scooby-Doo a couple of times, most notably in the 1976 episode "A Menace in Venice".
- April O'Neil was captured this way in at least one episode of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1987).
- Garfield and Friends:
- A U.S. Acres segment, "The Bo Show", has Orson's brothers capture the entire cast except for Bo this way.
- Also in the Garfield segment "The Cactus Saga" in Jon's Uncle Cactus Jake's story of his grandfather Cactus Jack, his partner The Lasagna Kid's (Garfield's grandfather) girlfriend, Miss Kitty (an Arlene expy), is kidnapped in this fashion by the Leftkowitz Brothers.
- The Adventures of Super Mario Bros. 3 has a rare villain example. In one episode, King Koopa opens a dollar-sign bag and discovers the Koopalings bound and gagged, courtesy of the Mario Bros.
- In Gay Purr-ee, Meowrice's henchcats capture Mewsette this way after she attempts suicide by jumping off a bridge.
- Both Babs and Buster Bunny have this done to them in the Tiny Toon Adventures episode "Europe in 30 Minutes".
- In Futurama, Zap Brannigan uses this method to transport President McNeal to the Omicronians.
- In Classic Disney Shorts, Pete has kidnapped Minnie Mouse many times this way, including the movie Mickey, Donald, Goofy: The Three Musketeers.
- Bluto has captured Olive Oyl a few times this way in Popeye.
- In the Total Drama World Tour episode "Aftermath Aftermayhem" Blainley captures Bridgette this way and mails her to Siberia so she can take over hosting duty.
- In the Donkey Kong Junior cartoon "Double or Nothing" on Saturday Supercade, Bones' cousin Lucy Belle is kidnapped this way so she won't inherit her deceased uncle's mansion. Later, the same guys do this to Junior and Bones to prevent them from saving her.
- In the American Dad! episode "Stan Knows Best", Stan is tired of his daughter Hayley dating Jeff, so Stan arranges a group of mercenaries to abduct her from a party he's throwing, and they capture her with this method.
- In The Legend of Prince Valiant, Rowanne is kidnapped a few times this way.
- In the Adventures of the Gummi Bears episode "A Gummi by Any Other Name", Sunni Gummi is kidnapped this way by Duke Igthorn because he thought she was Princess Calla, because she was wearing a magic hat that could assume other characters' forms. Meanwhile, the real Calla and her friend Cavin are captured by Igthorn's ogres with the same method.
- In the Droopy and Dripple segments of Tom and Jerry Kids, McWolf kidnapped Miss Vavoom a couple of times with this method.
- In one episode of Heathcliff and the Catillac Cats, Heathcliff's girlfriend Sonia is abducted by some corrupt animal shelter owners this way, naturally when Heathcliff finds out he is not too happy about it.
- In a couple of episodes of Peter Pan & the Pirates, Captain Hook and crew captured Peter, Wendy and the rest of the gang this way, in one he thought he caught Peter and presented him to the others as an offering, it turns out he caught Smee instead.
- In The Powerpuff Girls episode "Abracadaver" the title villain does this to Bubbles. He then locks her in a tank filled with water, though she later escapes on her own somehow.
- In the ˇMucha Lucha! episode "The Anger of Cindy Slam", Richocet, Buena Girl, and The Flea capture Cindy Slam this way so they can restrain her because they wanted to bring her to an amusement park they think she wants to go to without her beating them up in the process.
- Phineas and Ferb has an episode where this is used on Isabella during her birthday. Buford stuffs her in a sack and takes her from activity to activity. The Fireside Girls also do this to Irving when his presence threatens to ruin Isabella's time with Phineas( who is finally alone and unoccupied with projects). Neither Isabella nor Irving seem to mind. Irving is just elated that he was tied up and stuffed into a sack by beautiful ladies because it's obvious that Abduction Is Love.
- In the DuckTales (1987) episode "My Mother The Psychic" the Beagle Boys kidnap Fenton Crackshell's mother this way after learning from Flintheart Glomgold that she's using her new gained ability to look into the future to make Scrooge's financial decisions which is making him a lot of money.
- In The Flintstones tv special "Hollyrock-A-Bye Baby" mobster Big Rock's henchmen Slick and Rocky kidnap Wilma's mother this way after mistaking her for Fred but not without her putting up a fight first, because Fred had taken a rare pearl from him that he thought was a bowling ball.
- In an episode of Invader Zim, two (very stupid) aliens throw Zim in a sack, and say he fell for their cunning plan.
- In the Police Academy The Animated Series episode "A Blue Knight At The Opera" opera singer Mademoiselle Diva is kidnapped this way by a stalker who is obsessed with her and dressed as the Phantom after he catches her through a trap door.
- In the Hanna-Barbera TV special "Robin Hoodnik" Maid Marian (who's an anthropomorphic fox) is kidnapped twice this way, first after the Sheriff of Nottingham's men make her drink a love potion to make sure the Sheriff was the first person she saw, then later after Robin and his Merry Men rescue her and Oxx the Dumb Muscle of the Sheriff's men catches her as they carry her off in her bed.
- In "Ketchup Vampires" Huberta and her cousins kidnap Bella this way so that their master can have her for his bride.
- This has happened to Tails from Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog a couple of times, once by Coconuts and another time by Scratch and Grounder.
- In the The Pink Panther episode All For Pink And Pink For All the Queen is kidnapped by her advisor's men who were disguised as musketeers.
- In the Stōked episode ""The Captain, The Grom, His Job and Her Dream" Fin is kidnapped this way by Reef, Broseph, and Emma to cheer her up after finding out she doesn't like her new job, we never see her in the sack, we see from her point of view of her eyes in the darkness of the sack and the gang dumping her out.
- In the Totally Spies! episode "Mandy Doll Mania'' Seth Toyman uses the remote controlled Mandy dolls to tie Sam, Clover, and Alex up in a sack.
- In The Life and Times of Juniper Lee episode 9 "The World According to LARP" 2 demon henchmen do this to Dennis after he puts a necklace on that allows him to see them, mistaking him for Juniper's brother Ray Ray, who has the natural ability to see monsters like Juniper.
- Two of Flip the Frogs human girlfriends are kidnapped with this method in "The Phoney Express" and "Coo Coo The Magician".
- In the Yogi Bear TV special "Yogi & the Invasion of the Space Bears" Cindy Bear is caught this way by one of Ranger Smith's assistants Ranger Roubideux, mistaking her for Yogi, in an attempt to bring him to justice for his picnic basket theft.
- This happens to the heroes in one episode of the Dungeons & Dragons cartoon, courtesy of a bunch of snail-like creatures. They end up rescued — accidentally — by Lovable Coward Sir John, who panics at the sight of them and starts flailing with his torch; luckily, the snails who are very sensitive to light, drop their hostages and flee.
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: In "Stranger Than Fan Fiction", Caballeron's goons captures Quibble Pants and Rainbow Dash by throwing burlap sacks over them, and carry them to the jungle.
- The Legend of Korra:
- Bumi suggests using this trope when attempting to recruit airbenders to rebuild the Air Nation, but Tenzin rejects the idea, deciding it must be a voluntary choice.
- Played straight when Team Avatar kidnaps Baatar Jr. from an Earth Empire airship to use as a hostage to use in a negotiation.