Tyrion: Anyone named Desmond Crakehall must be a pervert.Dwarfs (not that kind, the real kind) note in fiction are fairly uncommon. When they do show up, they tend to be either comic relief or playing a fantasy creature. But then, there's these guys. The Depraved Dwarf is a pint-sized bucket of malice. He (and it's pretty much always a he) is either a sadistic psychopath, a twisted rapist, or at the very least a violent, cold-blooded criminal. They tend to show up when the hero has been rendered helpless. Often, expect giggling. Can go hand in hand with The Napoleon, if the Depraved Dwarf's misanthropy is implied to be a response - albeit blown out of proportion - to discrimination and abuse faced as a result of their short stature. If he's The Don or a similar leadership role, see Mister Big. May or may not overlap with Little People Are Surreal. For villains with other disabilities, see Evil Albino, Evil Cripple, and Eunuchs Are Evil.
Sansa: I hear that you're a pervert.
Tyrion: I am the Imp. I have certain standards to maintain.
Sansa: I hear that you're a pervert.
Tyrion: I am the Imp. I have certain standards to maintain.
open/close all folders
Anime & Manga
- In Berserk, Griffith spends a whole year in the tender care of one.
- "The Baby" from Monster, a neo-nazi and crime lord.
- Mukotsu from InuYasha is very small and toad-like compared to normal humans, and he's shown melting and suffocating people with his poisons. He also tries to do something nasty to a helpless Kagome, before being bifurcated by Sesshomaru.
- Fist of the North Star featured Habu, a Monkey Kung Fu master who served Amiba, and Komaku, a minion of Yuda who tried to poison the water supply and has a fighting style that gives him a great advantage in high, narrow places.
- "The Director" (no real name given) from Daily Life with Monster Girl is a slimy Con Man who harasses the girls under the pretense of filming a documentary about extraspecies people. He actually shows nothing but contempt for extraspecies and is only worried about how much money he'll make by selling their byproducts (discarded skin, scales, eggs, etc.) and his fetishising videos.
- Wonder Woman villain Dr. Psycho (pictured above). He can be best characterized as a "misogynistic, vindictive, spiteful, petty, sadistically cruel serial killer/rapist and cannibal with the ability to control people's minds".
- Gizmo of the Fearsome Five.
- The Dummy combines this with Creepy Doll by pretending to be a ventriloquist dummy.
- Fables revealed (or at least heavily implied) that the eponymous Seven Dwarfs did bad bad things to Snow White during their time together, which is why she murdered them all.
- Big Figure from Watchmen.
- Le Bossu from Batman RIP. Near the end of the story, The Joker gives him a face to match his personality.
- Surprisingly averted in X-Men Noir, where Eugene Judd is one of the only good guys without any kind of pathology.
- Simon Culp of the Starman series. Besides starting out as a thieving, murderous hellspawn in the 1800s, he developed powers identical to fellow immortal The Shade, and eventually proceeded to turn their centuries long personal feud into an enormous Xanatos Gambit to consume and destroy Shade utterly; first his reputation, then his city, and then fight him into oblivion.
- Mr. Luv from Gen13. His mother was infected with Gen-Factor chemicals while she was pregnant with him and he lost the ability to grow physically, but instead grew very intelligent. He runs the Luv Industries toy empire and has a tendency of dressing up like Max from Where the Wild Things Are. His encounter with the team was for the purpose of finding a mate so that he could create a new generation of Gen-Actives.
- Mister Mxyzptlk from the Superman comics is sometimes portrayed as this. As an Eldritch Abomination from the fifth dimension, he's not so much depraved as he is amoral, but he probably counts nonetheless. He's also similar to Rumpelstiltskin (one of the Ur Examples of this trope) in how he can be defeated, but the method is more complex: while the heroine of Rumpelstiltskin just had to tell Rumpelstiltskin his name, Superman has to trick Mister Mxyzptlk himself into saying his own name - backwards.
- Lucky Luke: A more family friendly example than most is Joe Dalton who is moronic enough to qualify for Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain but at the same time is also rather bloodthirsty and sadistic (rejoicing in killing Luke and even other people and being ready to shoot at the slightest provocation) and can even become outright Ax-Crazy when he loses his shit.
- Kondrati Topolov, aka Gremlin, was a three-foot dwarf gifted with Super Intelligence that he used to battle both the Incredible Hulk and Iron Man. He later built a copy of Boris Bullski's enormous Titanium Man armour so that he could better fight with Iron Man—a move that led to his death when the armour caught fire with him inside.
- Marvel stories containing the Darkhold occasional feature the Darkhold Dwarf, a mysterious entity that is possibly the anthropomorphic personification of the book itself.
Films — Animated
- Lord Farquaad, the abnormally short Big Bad of the first Shrek movie, proves his evil cred by banishing all the fairy tale creatures from his kingdom, displaying a creepy interest in Princess Fiona, and (in his Establishing Character Moment) having his goons waterboard — er, milkboard — the Gingerbread Man and rip off his legs. Shrek Forever After ups the ante with Rumpelstiltskin, who is even nastier than Farquaad.
Films — Live-Action
- Mini-me from Austin Powers is a lighter example. He's not that depraved, but he does try to eat a live cat at one point. Considering the stock he is cut from, the dwarfism is probably not the main cause.
- Subverted in Foul Play; "The Dwarf" that Gloria is warned about isn't really a dwarf. This, of course, leads to confusion, and when she meets an actual dwarf, she goes nuts and throws him out of her apartment, seriously injuring him, only to find out he's really a bible salesman.
- Hercules, the demonic dwarf in The Devil Within Her who after being spurned by the protagonist for refusing his sexual advances places a curse on her child, which results in the newborn being supernaturally strong and murderous. The fact that he also works an act at a burlesque house dosen't help the stereotype either.
- Frankenstein's Castle of Freaks (featured once on the original Movie Macabre with Elvira) included just such a dwarf, who promises to teach his friend Ook the Neanderthal about "the pleasures of life" (which is to say, molesting an unconscious woman).
- The title antagonist from the Leprechaun series of movies.
- Death at a Funeral has the dwarf who blackmails the family with compromising pictures of him and the family patriach engaged in questionable acts.
- Olaf, the title character of the Danish Exploitation Film The Sinful Dwarf, lures young women into an attic and locks them up. They are later used for prostitution. Yes, the word "depraved" might be a little light in this case.
- Harry Earles plays what might be the Ur-Example in The Unholy Three. He is easily the most vicious and evil of the titular trio, and pulls off the old "midget in a baby carriage" trick.
- Downplayed with Nick Nack of The Man with the Golden Gun. He's Affably Evil at all times, but he does work for a renowned contract killer, and does not hesitate to try killing others when he feels like it.
- The Phantom of the Opera
- Averted in X-Men: Days of Future Past, in which Bolivar Trask is played by Peter Dinklage. Despite the combination of villainy and dwarfism, his characterisation is that of a Well-Intentioned Extremist Mad Scientist, and though he has a distinct Lack of Empathy there is none of the sexual predation or deliberate sadism that the trope usually entails. Very unusually for such a casting, his dwarfism has absolutely no discernible relevance to either the plot or his character, mainly because it was purely a case of Ability over Appearance after the script had been written, and any attempt to add things would have been deeply wrong.
- Though in the Rogue Cut, Trask insists that Mystique be handed over to him for research purposes. Perhaps with this trope in mind, President Nixon responds, "I don't care who you screw, as long as it's not me."
- Lone Wolf McQuade: Falcon is a Depraved Dwarf and an Evil Cripple, as well as the head of an arms smuggling operation and a rival to the main bad guy.
- Sick-Head in 31 is a Nazi dwarf wielding two knives.
- In Orphan, the villain is an abnormally short woman who poses as a child.
- In the "Catholic High School Girls in Trouble" sketch of The Kentucky Fried Movie, one scene features a Depraved Dwarf in a clown suit preparing to whip a group of topless girls suspended from the ceiling.
- The Spirit. Spirit shows a Cheek Copy of Sand Saref's "perfect ass" to every bellhop in town to find out which hotel she's staying at. The bellhop who recognizes it has dwarfism. Though that may just be because he was at exactly the right height to have a good view.
- Il nano erotico has a woman being hired to babysit a child that turns out to really be a sexually sadistic little person whose "mother" is actually his wife, a fellow psycho who watches (and gets off to) his antics through the cameras that they have hidden throughout their mansion.
- Ralphus, of the exploitation "classic" Bloodsucking Freaks, is the sadistic torturer Sardu's right-dismembered-hand man, and suffers from profound boundary issues with severed human heads. (On the bright side, he's a loyal employee with a strong work ethic.)
- Peter Dinklage plays the villain in Disney's 2007 Underdog movie.
- Pär Lagerkvist's The Dwarf could be a trope codifier. The protagonist, the titular dwarf, is utterly, irredeemably evil.
- In the book Obsidian Butterfly, part of the Anita Blake Vampire Hunter series, there is Nicky Bako, a pretty infamous necromancer who is the witch for the outlaw biker gang and werewolf pack in the area, Los Lobos.
- This is what everyone thinks Tyrion Lannister from A Song of Ice and Fire is, despite his being one of the more morally upstanding characters in the series not named Stark. But he may have had a Start of Darkness because of his ill treatment. He isn't helping his case by being a serial purveyor of prostitutes and a known drunkard. Also his treatment of his nephew Joffrey, while liked by the audience, makes him look worse when he is blamed for their murder.
- One gladiator in the second book of Detectives in Togas.
- The Colorman from Christopher Moore's Sacre Bleu. Contrasted with Toulouse Lautrec who has a more or less heroic role.
- In the Kindle short story ''Melon Heads'', there's a whole tribe of them living in the Ohio woods.
- The Old Curiosity Shop from Charles Dickens gives an early example, with the utterly depraved Daniel Quilp as the main villain of the story.
- Subverted with Little Half from the final book in The Sea of Trolls series, who's a treacherous bastard but is just trying to protect his older brother.
- The Dwarf in Friedrich Dürrenmatt's crime novel Suspicion is a subversion. He is not quite 80 centimeters (31.5 inches) tall, seems to suffer from some sort of mental retardation and is a strong and deadly assassin and henchman of Dr. Emmenberger. He is also a friend of Gulliver, who is a good guy. Gulliver also argues that The Dwarf is the only one who is innocent, comparing him to a trained animal. After being seperated from Emmenberger, The Dwarf shows no murderous tendencies and behaves more like a toddler.
- Junji "Kappa" Kon in The Man with the Red Tattoo is a short assassin working for the Yakuza who finds killing fun, but turns out to be surprisingly honorable after being captured.
- The Midget, in the Illuminatus! trilogy, tends to take out his vengeance on the giant world in far less confrontational and more cerebral ways. But it's still terrible vengeance.
- The Tcho-Tcho of the Cthulhu Mythos are a pygmy Cannibal Tribe hailing from Southeast Asia.
- Last Legionary: The One is a crippled dwarf, whose emaciated body consists of little more than a set of badly stunted tentacles that are too weak to do anything beyond crawl. He's also the leader of the Warlord's elite Deathwing squadron, responsible for the murder of entire worlds and, when inside his huge golden exoskeleton becomes a force to be reckoned with.
- Vorkosigan Saga: While Miles Vorkosigan himself is by no means depraved, this trope is so common In-Universe that it makes him a constant target of suspicion on his homeworld of Barrayar. In less parochial areas of the universe, he's fine.
- One of the creepy orderlies in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest had his growth stunted by the trauma of seeing his mother gang-raped. And yes, that's a thing; see the other wiki's page on psychosocial short stature.
- Roald Dahl created several iconic examples:
- The Oompa-Loompas in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory downplay this. They're normally a benevolent Servant Race — until a misbehaving child ends up in peril, at which point they become a creepy Greek Chorus and break into a gruesome song detailing the child's potential fate. The 1971 film adaptation replaces their songs with far less graphic ones but makes up for it by giving them unnatural orange skin.
- The Grand High Witch in The Witches, described as no taller than four and a half feet, is a straighter example.
Live Action TV
- There's one in The Cape, although he's more a Jerkass than outright evil.
- Downplayed in The Wild Wild West. Miguelito Loveless is a typeII/typeIII AntiVillain.
- Game of Thrones:
- Tyrion Lannister is introduced to the audience in a brothel, where the whore Ros discusses his reputation as a "drunken little lecher". Subverted when we later discover Tyrion is the most decent member of his Big, Screwed-Up Family. Nevertheless, Black and Grey Morality means even he gets a few cold-blooded actions for which his dwarfism provides a Freudian Excuse.
- Tyrion also invokes the trope in "The Lion and the Rose" when he jokingly cautions Joffrey to be careful around the dwarf jesters since they tend to get horny.
- Subverted in The X-Files episode "Humbug". While investigating a series of murders in a small town populated by various ex-circus sideshow performers, Mulder catches the manager of the trailer park (who happens to be a little person) crawling around beneath the trailer where Scully is staying. The manager indignantly corrects Mulder's implied assumption that he was peeping. He was just doing some necessary repair work on the trailer, with Scully's knowledge, in fact. He further claims that he has no need to spy on Scully because he gets more than his fair share of tail from "curious" women.
- Several show up in 1000 Ways to Die, although they tend to be more of the Jerk Ass variety that truly evil. And at least two of these die for being Too Dumb to Live.
- The Toddler in Henry Danger is one of these. His whole schtick, is that he's a dwarf who acts like a toddler.
- Alberich in Wagner's Das Rheingold goes from desperate and love-starved to a bundle of perverse rage, determined to force the world to renounce love and slave for him while he dallies with the pretty women. He even sires a son with Queen Grimhilde, Hagen after he buys her love with gold.
- Frank Zappa's "The Torture Never Stops" mentions "a sinister midget."
- The Midget Pirates of Willigoat from The Aquabats!' song "Captain Hampton and the Midget Pirates!"
Although they were wee men, they had big swords and were known for gutting many, and leaving few alive.
- Dr Greenthumb by Cypress Hill has a dwarf hitting on the Night Nurse.
- Bushwick Bill of Geto Boys fame certainly liked to cultivate this persona. Be warned, 'cause "Size Ain't Shit." He does his share of horror-rapping on tracks like "Chuckie" and "Murder Avenue." In more recent years, though, he has subverted this trope by venturing into gospel music.
Mythology and Religion
- Many myths feature sinister Little People — for example, goblins in English folklore, kobolds in German folklore, Little People in Native American Mythology, and the Nibelungs in Nibelungenlied
- Dwarfs in Norse Mythology are a rather interesting case. The concept of dwarfs may have evolved from dark elves; indeed, the Prose Edda equates dwarfs with dökkálfar and svartálfar (literally "dark elves" and "black elves" in Old Norse, respectively). As such, you'd expect these guys to be pretty nasty, and they often are in the myths. But as time went on, they became shorter and less malevolent until they were recognizable as the dwarves (spelled with a v, following J. R. R. Tolkien's example) that we know and love today.
- Many fairy tales also feature depraved dwarfs — for instance, Rumpelstiltskin, Snow-White and Rose-Red, and The Yellow Dwarf.
- Hornswaggle from the WWE universe.
- Doink the Clown from WWE (when it was still WWF) has the Dwarf sidekick "Dink" the clown.
- When Rubi gets captured in Wet, she's subjected to the attentions of a dwarf Torture Technician.
- Salazar from Resident Evil 4.
- In Borderlands and its sequel, squeaky-voiced midgets are commonly-faced enemies in Pandora, and are usually members of homicidal bandit gangs. One of the only named, voiced Midgets in either game is a boss called Sandman, a brutal, murderous pirate obsessed with finding a legendary treasure trove.
- God Hand has its share of midget enemies, the most notable being the Mad Midget Five and the Psychic Midget.
- The King of Fighters series has Choi Bounge, a criminal who resembles a shrunken down Freddy Krueger. Mostly Played for Laughs, however.
- Ferra from Mortal Kombat X was originally thought to be a child, but is actually an example of this trope, a blood thirsty one, to be precise.
- One of the playable characters in Thrill Kill is The Imp, a midget with a psychotic hatred of taller people who has a pair of stilts crudely grafted to his legs.
- The Imps from Plants vs. Zombies. Often seen riding a Gargantuar who throws them into your defenses, they're tiny, fast, and yet as durable as a normal zombie.
- Dr. Knickerbockers from The Adventures of Dr. McNinja, who was actually based off of a recurring nightmare of the artists.
- Played With in Something*Positive—Pepito was originally the victim of depravity, being kept as Avegadro's Sex Slave for years. When he was eventually liberated, however, he kept up the same messed-up habits (peeing on people, etc.). When he eventually learned English he turned out to be something of a Jerk Ass, including to the people who (admittedly rather begrudingly) helped save him in the first place. Then he was eaten alive by Cat Girls.
- The Venture Bros.: The Murderous Moppets certainly qualify. They are a pair of Ax-Crazy, Knife Nut psychopaths who seem to lack any empathy whatsoever, especially towards their victims. They only show respect to Dr. Mrs. The Monarch, who they lust over, and The Monarch himself, who is the only person (besides Brock Sampson, obviously) who seems to be capable of scaring even them.
Tim-Tom: We could take out his tongue.
Kevin: With a knife!
Tim-Tom: Remove his heart.
Kevin: Yeah, with a knife!
Tim-Tom: A bigger knife!
Kevin: Fucking knife!
- One-shot Bugs Bunny villain "Babyface" Finster is a criminal whose modus operandi is passing himself off as an infant. He fits neatly into a baby basket.