Ceiling Corpse

A character goes into a spooky house. Walking around he feels compelled to look up. He is shocked to find a body stuck to the ceiling.

This tropes is when a person's body is, through supernatural means or otherwise, stuck to the ceiling. Since no one has peripheral vision, it is almost always set up for a shocking reveal. Is usually revealed by dripping blood.

In some examples, the person might not actually be dead, or there might not be enough of a body left to be a recognizable person.

Subtrope of Peek-A-Boo Corpse. Often a subtrope of Body in a Breadbox.

As a Death Trope, there are unmarked spoilers, so beware.


Examples:

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    Anime & Manga 
  • One Piece. In Punk Hazard's frozen laboratory, half of the Straw Hats and the giant kids are running out of the facility when they see frozen corpses sticking off the ceiling. The Straw Hats have to cheer the kids up by singing.

    Comic Strips 
  • Non-deadly example: Garfield once duct-taps his neighbor's little dog to the ceiling above her phone, and when she calls Jon about the missing dog, indicates that he should tell her to look up.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Men in Black, when J and K return to the morgue, Agent K finds the body of the rude morgue attendant (David Cross) where the Bug stuck it to the ceiling.
  • In Jeepers Creepers, Darry freaks out when he realizes that the roof of the tunnel he's fallen into is covered in preserved human corpses.
  • In The Blob (1988), a man walks into a projection room and a yo-yo falls down from above. He looks up, and sees the projectionist is stuck to the ceiling, half dissolved by the blob.
  • Early on in Aguirre, the Wrath of God, a troop of Spaniards are exploring the jungle when the last of them catches his foot in a sling and is silently drawn up into a tree. Moments later, another Spaniard turns around to look for his comrade. Looking around confusedly, he suddenly sees blood dripping from above on nearby leaves. He looks up, is terrified and runs off screaming "Indians! Indians!" We never see what happened to the man up on the tree, but it is clear he is dead.
  • Predators are fond of leaving flayed human corpses dangling gruesomely from treetops and ceilings

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Supernatural, this was what became of Sam's girlfriend in season one and her body is revealed when it drips blood on his face. It was a repeat of what happened with his mother.
  • In the miniseries remake of of Rosemary's Baby, the priest feels blood on his face and looks up to find himself hanging from the ceiling.
  • In Heroes, this is how Mohinder is revealed to Peter Petrelli.
  • In Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., this is how Skye discovers Eric Koenig's body and realizes that Ward is a traitor.
  • Firefly: The episode Bushwacked ups the ante with (nearly) the whole crew of a derelict cargo vessel strung upside down on the ceiling awaiting discovery by River long after the others had entered and explored the rest of the ship looking for them.
  • In one episode of Criminal Minds, the unsub kills three people in a fit of rage and lies down to go to sleep; when he feels a blood drop in his face and opens his eyes again he sees the bodies of his victims stuck above him on the ceiling, blood pool and all. Context 
  • An early episode of Star Trek: Enterprise has an away team board an unresponsive alien vessel. The place is already quite spooky when Hoshi spots its crew strung up from the ceiling, having their blood mechanically harvested.
  • Not bodies (because they weren't dead), but in Star Trek: Voyager's "Cold Fire", Janeway looks up to see B'Lanna and Tuvok pinned to the ceiling.

    Theme Parks 
  • At the haunted house ride in the British theme park Drayton Manor, the entrance to the actual ride was set up (though it might have changed by now) as if the participants are volunteer paranormal investigators, and at one point the park employee/lead "investigator" makes a reference to all the previous investigators still being missing. Later in the ride intro/experience, a painting comes alive, warns people to get out, then tells them to look up. Those floating bodies slowly tumbling about on the ceiling were very convincing...

    Video Games 
  • In Mark of the Ninja, you can hang guards from grappling hook points with the chain of your hook, either after you've killed them or, if you've taken the Hangman's Hymn perk, in the process of doing so. Any guards who spot the corpse will be immediately terrified.
  • Doom 2: The secret level end with the Keen corpses hanging from the ceiling.
  • Not a corpse, but in Mystery Case Files: Dire Grove the Master Detective finds one of the students frozen to the farmhouse ceiling.

    Web Comics 
  • This ''xkcd strip plays with this trope. It isn't so much a body as it is evidence of what's left of it...

    Western Animation 
  • Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated: A professor is found in a cocoon on the ceiling. He did it to himself to appear innocent.
  • The Simpsons episode "Lisa the Veterinarian" has a subplot where Marge becomes a crime scene cleaner for the police department. Her first job involves one of these (the police warn her about the scene, she looks around the apparently corpse-free room, and then body parts start falling from the ceiling).

    Real Life 
  • The infamous SL-1 nuclear accident in 1961 which resulted in the United States Army getting out of the nuclear power business. An operator took a control rod that was supposed to be withdrawn 10 cm and, likely by accident, withdrew it 66 cm. A prompt critical reaction occurred, followed by the explosion of the reactor vessel. Rescue workers who were making necessarily brief visits into the highly radioactive room found one dead operator and a second operator who died minutes after being taken out. The first responders initially could not find the third man in the three-man crew and were unable to account for his whereabouts. They finally found him hanging 13 feet over the reactor vessel, pinned to the ceiling by a piece of debris.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/CeilingCorpse