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Deranged Animation

Animation, freed from the limitations of live-action films, allows you to show anything you could ever imagine. Here, that freedom is used to dispense with all semblance of reality, and sanity, taking the viewer into a crazy world where anything goes. Some people find this "anything goes" attitude delightful. Usually it wasn't made on drugs... but it almost seems like it'd be less creepy if you knew they did.

This can be a pretty rich well of Nightmare Fuel for younger viewers.

See also Art Shift, Disney Acid Sequence, Off Model, Uncanny Valley, This Is Your Premise on Drugs, Nightmare Fuel, Faux Symbolism, and Widget Series. Compare Big Lipped Alligator Moment, Surreal Horror, and Bizarro Episode, where things only temporarily become deranged (usually).


Examples:

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     Anime Film 
  • Many elements of Catnapped, particularly Papadoll (a monstrous dog) and Buburina (a freakishly animated evil cat queen). Just check at her freaky eyes and facial expression when she's hypnotizing characters.
  • Dead Leaves: Take FLCL and give it LSD in addition to all the crack.
    • In an interview on the disc, one of the creators was asked what his inspiration was. His reply was simply "I'm a Drunkard." Said interview was conducted in a rooftop bar while the group were being served drinks of ever increasing potency. It eventually culminated in what one of the group described as ?detergent?.
    • Also, in one [adult swim] bumper, they quoted an interview (but didn't say which one) where the producers stated that FLCL is "the type of show we make to let off steam after tackling something like Evangelion."
  • Interstella 5555? Too easy. It is, after all, basically a giant Daft Punk music video.
  • As is Unico in the Island of Magic.
  • Satoshi Kon appears to have used something to help him with his work at times, judging from Perfect Blue, Paranoia Agent, and especially Paprika.
  • Tekkon Kinkreet/Tekkon Kinkreet is bizarre throughout, but the Minotaur segment tops it all.
  • All of Mind Game.
  • The Adolescence of Utena (well, the series is like this too, but mostly the movie). It runs like a dream on hallucinogenics. It includes scenes like a morphing butterfly/girl/bedsheet in a cabbage patch and Utena turning into a car. Listening to the director's commentary however, reveals that not only was its creator sober and off drugs, but he's also an incredibly calm, thoughtful individual in general and everything has an allegorical meaning.
  • The End of Evangelion gets really weird and creepy once Instrumentality starts.
    • Also, the little there was in the way of animation in episode 26 was rather... trippy.
  • Aachi and Ssipak is a Korean film about a world powered by feces, and the little blue guys who provide it.
  • Noiseman Sound Insect is a beautiful short film, but also very, very messed up.
  • Angel's Egg. When even the goddamn creator throws up his hands and admits he has no idea what the film is supposed to say, you know you're in bizarro-land. Gorgeously-animated bizarro-land.
  • Cat Soup has been described by reviewers as "Hello Kitty on acid."
  • AKIRA, once Tetsuo starts to mutate. It's also nightmarish and disgusting as well.
  • Kanashimi No Belladonna is trippy throughout, but the repellent Visual Innuendo during the representative rape scene in particular stands out.
  • Radio City Fantasy's more surreal segues go into this territory.
  • Though some of its chapters are breathtakingly or horrifyingly realistic, there are some stories in The Animatrix that just went out of the loop. "Kid's Story" has its moments, but "World Record" and "Matriculated" take the cake in terms of distorted, wild animation.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica The Movie: Rebellion brought back Gekidan Inu Curry, designers of the surreal Art Shift witch labyrinths, and had them do an ever-escalating portion of the visuals. Random flying objects, twitchy paper cut-out animation, and creepy misshapen puppets... the end result is like watching the already trippy original series on acid. Justified in that the whole movie takes place inside a labyrinth, with everything that comes with it.

     Anime Series 
  • Bobobo Bobobobo, has extreme Art Shift to realistic faces at times, things like Yugi Mutou shoot out of Bobobo's head, a male enemy becomes a very feminine torpedo and two boys fuse into a Magical Girl. Here's one example from the show
  • The guys who made Excel♥Saga had to be hyped on something. Whether it was crack or way too much coffee and not enough sleep is up to you.
    • Then he goes and makes Puni Puni Poemi, which compresses an even greater amount of insanity into 1/13th of the time.
      • Excel♥Saga does have some semblance of sense and logic, just as long as you're aware of what all the parodies and references are, what's being satirized, and why. It's not so much some kind of "random for the sake of random" or "on drugs" type of psychedelic trip. (That distinction goes to Bobobo Bobobobo). Excel♥Saga, however, IS one big non-stop barrage of in-jokes poking fun at the director Shinichi Watanabe's own thoughts, feelings, and ludicrous experiences at working in multiple genres of anime, as well as original manga author Koshi Rikudo's cynical, social satire, self-mocking, and controversial statements about his own nation's strange policies and economic troubles. Although the existence of the Puuchuus and why they randomly turn into Takao Saito and Leiji Matsumoto characters when struck with a blunt object? Yeah, I'm not even going to try and explain that.
  • FLCL, which almost qualifies as a drug in and of itself. Actually, it was. It was the anti-depressant for everyone who had worked on Neon Genesis Evangelion.
    • And anything else made by Kazuya Tsurumaki. This guy won't ever need drugs — he's crazy enough just as is.
  • Gankutsuou is set in a futuristic world so trippy one would almost think it was made by Dr. Gonzo from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, not Studio GONZO.
    • That's because you haven't read the manga, which was definitely made on several substances unknown to mortals and on summoning Salvador Dali's soul after he went through the nine circles of Hell.
  • Kaiba. The plot summary alone sounds a little out there... And then you see the art style. Kaiba looks like a child's TV show, with trippy architecture and illogical types of technology, gone Cerebus Syndrome and mixed with adult themes. Buildings are depressingly creepy, even with the bright colors and lack of geometric structure. Then you consider how the authorities steal bodies, look into other peoples' personal worlds, execute enemies, have sex, pilot spaceships, HIT BUTTONS AND PRESS LEVERS, etc,.
    • And Kaiba has nothing on Kemonozume, by the same director. In fact, the art style is actually fairly representative of everything Yuasa (and Studio 4C, for that matter) has done since Mind Game.
    • And while we're on the subject, Mind Game heavily featured about three or four animation styles, all of them rather...unconventional.
  • Xxx HO Li C is a wonderful manga, but the art style CLAMP employed does not translate well to video. The anime is fine, but the movie is trippy, surreal, and somehow enjoyable.
  • Enjoy this list of the top ten (yes, only ten) "WTF?" moments from Dragon Ball Z.
  • Chiyo-chichi. Had to be some weird "dream" for Sakaki to come up with that. The animators just smoked something.
  • The second opening to Death Note. Very bright colors and Japanese metal for a show about a kid playing god? Someone had to be tripping.
  • Mononoke takes this and plays it for every drop of horror possible.
    • The producer now has an established record of this sort of thing; see the entry for Trapeze below.
    • And Kenji Nakamura's gone at it again with C.
  • Episode 18 of the Axis Powers Hetalia anime. There's no way that the decision to have the Roman Empire randomly pop out of the sea and sing about the differences between heaven and hell was made while sober.
    • And then there's the movie ("Paint it, White!") where he appears again and sings a rock version (!) of his Heaven and Hell song. It doesn't even make sense in context. ...well, the context itself doesn't really make any sense, either.
  • Welcome to the NHK has snippets of this in which the protagonist is taunted by appliances.
  • One has to wonder what the animators of Bleach Episode 133 were smoking when they made it. Everyone has a rapeface. Even Hitsugaya. And Yachiru Kusajishi.
  • Trapeze. Oh dear god((s)/dess(es)) Trapeze. A little series about psychiatry at which its own entry notes (legitimately) that it makes viewers fear for their own mental health. Take a novel series about an unusual psychiatrist, mixing it with hallucinogenic vitamin shots, adding one's brains and a major TV announcer, and placing all of these in a blender and setting to "liquefy". And then having a big-name model dress up as a perky-goth nurse and injecting said medicine whilst the doctor leers nearby in a psychedelic fursuit. And this is a Cliff's Notes version of the series BEFORE the True Insanity starts per episode.
  • Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei.
  • CGI series Ga-Ra-Ku-Ta, or Mr. Stain on Junk Alley, which features a hobo named Mr. Stain that finds an object in each episode that royally screws him or his friends up, such as him finding a box of crayons that make anything you draw become real which leads to his friend losing his entire face and begin sucking everything in sight up due to his face becoming a black hole.
    • It certainly doesn't help that Junk Alley is apparently built above the ruins of a sunken, Lovecraftian city. Though that would probably explain most of the weird, creepy things that happen.
  • Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt. Ben 10, Invader Zim, Powerpuff Girls - all of the Western cartoons you used to watch were pureed and delivered intravenously directly to the brains of the people behind Dead Leaves and FLCL, then Gainax stuck a pen under their trembling fingers and told them to draw. Unlike most of the other examples, this one was actually influenced by drugs - the creators have admitted that they were drunk off their ass when they came up with the concept for the show.
  • The Wedding Peach OVA where the Love Angels become cat girls contain EXTREMELY traumatizing images, such as when they go catty over Yanagiba and when they take the forms of the schoolgirl versions, when they innocently move about the wall of the school, yet another Nightmare Face with catty features they don't have anymore until they see Yanagiba.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica is normally devoid of this and doesn't contain as much as a single exaggerated expression, but steps right off the deep end whenever the witches show up. Justified as, firstly, it visibly demonstrates the witches' Reality Warper powers and their insanity, and secondly, as this is a Studio Shaft anime, it's required by law to have psychedelic visuals.
    • To put this in perspective, go watch that video linked in the entry for Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei. When Madoka gets going, it uses that as a baseline and kicks the pedal through the floor.
  • Jungle wa Itsumo Hare nochi Guu a.k.a. Hare Nochi Guu is an acid trip from start to finish. The weirdness is too much to state on one paragraph, but suffice to say, the first opening features dancing palm trees and a world inside a stomach. And that's the less weird thing you'll get.
  • Episode 167 of Naruto Shippuden is this and severe Off Model. In a rare example, it actually works; the episode is a high-speed Chase Fight between two people who are about this close to gods, and the animation emphasises this.
  • Usually not common in the Pretty Cure franchise, but at one point in episode 13 of Smile Pretty Cure! we get two terrifyingly freaky shots of Miyuki's face from below. Said shots have already reached Memetic Mutation status around the fandom.
  • The 2012 anime of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure has this happen in the action scenes, with lurid colours and Written Sound Effects galore.

    Asian Animation 

    Eastern Animation 
  • Captain Pronin, a parody of '80s action movies, is exactly what would happen if Mike Judge did meth.
  • The animation in His Wife Is A Hen is a tad... well, let's start with the boxes that just shrink into thin air after use.
  • Svetlonos (Torchbearer). A trippy stop-motion animation that features what looks like an ancient Greek hero walking into a set of ruins filled with deadly clockwork traps operated by female statues. Female statues that feel pain when broken. And lets not get into the carnivorous rats that tear apart anything that dies within the ruins, or the mechanized flying creature that spouts artificial blood when defeated or the hideous machine at the end that needs human blood to keep the heavens running.
  • Everything by Ivan Maximov. For example this thing.
  • Almost everything done by Marcell Jankovics, but "Son of the White Mare" takes the cake with it's vibrant colors and surreal artistic representation. Let's just look at the Big Bad (a gigantic supercomputer that walks on two legs) and his two lackeys (a Humongous Mecha and a three headed rock monster), who all look completely out of place for what is supposed to be ancient mythology.
  • Armen Film Animated Shorts, directed by Robert Saakyantz. This short, for example, is about a constantly shapeshifting monster-magician in Turkish national clothes. And yes, this is a Soviet animation.
  • A good number of arthouse animation master Rene Laloux's work. Short films in particular border on Faux Symbolism with hideously fascinating animation. Gandahar is heavy Freud Was Right and unnervingly bizarre, and then there's Fantastic Planet...
  • Everything by Jan Švankmajer.
  • Porgu AKA Hell is most definitely this, starting out relatively sane and slowly descending into a nightmarish vision of man's debauchery.
  • Jak Dziala Jamniczek is an epitome of this. Or anything by Julian Antonisz for that matter, thanks to his unique animation technique.

    Fan Fic 

     Web Animation  

     Western Animation Film 
  • We could make this easy on ourselves and say "Every Disney Acid Sequence EVER". Here are some that stand out:
    • Fantasia. After the film became a hit among the "head" crowdnote  on college campuses in the late 60s and early 70s, somebody asked animator Art Babbitt (who animated the dancing mushrooms on that film) if he had been influenced by drugs. He jokingly admitted, "Yes, it is true. I myself was addicted to Ex-Lax and Feenamint."
    • "Pink Elephants on Parade" Or 'Why elephants shouldn't drink alcohol.' The phrase "pink elephants" refers to hallucinations from too much alcohol consumption.
    • Saludos Amigos ends with the beautiful, but deranged segment "The Watercolors of Brasil". This is probably the least trippy Disney example, though.
    • The finale of The Three Caballeros ("Donald's Wacky Peyote Trip!") is the best representation of a drug-induced hallucination ever seen.
    • "Bumble Boogie" and especially "Blame It On The Samba" in Melody Time make delightful use of this trope.
    • The Heffalumps and Woozles song in Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day.
    • Genie's introductory song in Aladdin. A more justified example than most, as he's a Reality Warper.
  • Raggedy Ann & Andy: A Musical Adventure, is the near-legendary Richard Williams' trippy adaptation of the classic children's characters. It includes such madness as a giant taffy-blob monster named The Greedy, who is constantly shoving globs of himself into his mouth, and a diminutive king who inflates whenever he laughs, and is subjected to forced tickling which causes him to swell to immense size. That's not even scratching the surface; watch for yourself and find out...
  • This version of A Christmas Carol was produced by animation god Chuck Jones and directed by Richard Williams. It is the only version of the story thus far to ever win an Oscar, and deservedly so as it perfectly captures the book's mood. It's barely ever shown on television however, thanks to its trippy and nightmarish imagery. (If the sight of the open-jawed Jacob Marley doesn't scare the piss out of you, the demons living under the robes of the Ghost of Christmas Present will...)
  • Hugo The Hippo. The title doesn't cover the madness within.
  • The philosophical film Waking Life is less over the top than most examples on this page, as it is a series of vignettes where people monologue about dreams and philosophical concepts. It does get a bit trippy, sometimes.
  • Anything Ralph Bakshi had anything to do with — and that includes Cool World (despite being an utter failure) and Spicy City.
  • The Thief and the Cobbler. Especially in the Recobbled Cut, this movie is trippin'.
  • Yellow Submarine. Duh.
  • Fantastic Planet — This example is a little on-the-nose. Literally, in the case of some of the creatures.
  • Pink Floyd's The Wall: venomous Vagina Dentata flowers, marching fascist hammers, a vermiform judge with an anus for a face...
    • Also Wish You Were Here.
  • The Point! has a musical number about a whale decomposing, a three-faced man, and a talking tree. Unlike most of the other examples, this one was made on drugs. Just watch it.
  • I Married A Strange Person!. Bill Plympton makes incredibly surreal animation more often than not. He must have started his career after reading a book listing all the rules for animating the human face (chiefly, "don't distort or transform things too much or you'll end up in the Uncanny Valley"), then dedicated his life to breaking all those rules.
  • "Max don't have sex with your ex". And there are more like this from the same band.
  • Street ofCrocodiles. Stop motion animation that uses things like antique doll parts, machinery, and fresh meat. You have been warned. According with Mark Romanek, that short was one of his major inspirations for the music video of Nine Inch Nails "Closer".
    • The same can be said about the other shorts made by the Brothers Quay.
  • This infamous sequence from the claymation The Adventures of Mark Twain where three cute kids meet an angel named Satan. "Life itself is only a vision, a dream. Nothing exists save empty space and you. And you are but a thought."
  • Twice Upon a Time, especially the Nightmare Sequence involving sentient office supplies.
  • Allegro Non Troppo has several examples: The evolutionary march, The Faun's story, and the Firebird sequence (NSFW).
  • David & The Magic Pearl, well known to anyone familiar with YouTube Poop, features plenty of this.
  • Teen Titans: Trouble in Tokyo: Just like the Teen Titans animated series before it, Its contains bits of deranged animation in it, plus there's bits of deranged anime as well.
  • "Rock Odyssey" from Hanna-Barbera productions, circa 1982, which was unreleased in the US.
    • It involves a guitar dragon, army skeletons, siren headed policemen and the Beast of the Apocalypse.
  • Certain pieces of animation by Don Bluth in general qualify, as his aesthetic is largely based in what he learned while working at Disney — but tends to be a lot weirder and full of wacky moon-logic. This argument begins and ends with Rock-A-Doodle.
    • There are some who have claimed that even A Troll in Central Park is better than you'd think if watched under... certain circumstances. (The plot involves a Fairy creature and his magical plants hanging out in a city park, so don't blame us.)
  • Stella's transformation sequence in Help! I'm a Fish! embodies this trope.
  • The Brave Little Toaster is full of this, most notably in the title character's Nightmare Sequence involving a Monster Clown. Certain parts of the junkyard sequence near the end of the film also count, such as the build-up to the Heroic Sacrifice.
  • The "It's Tough to be a God" sequence in The Road to El Dorado, justified because the main characters are implied to be extremely drunk.
  • Frank Zappa worked with Stop Motion clay animator Bruce Bickford, producing a great deal of animation, which can be seen in Zappa's concert films Baby Snakes and The Dub Room Special, as well as in a film exclusively devoted to Bickford's animation, The Amazing Mr. Bickford. These videos contain images that include Zappa transforming into The Devil, explicit clay figure sexual intercourse and masturbation, mutilation, Gregory Peccary (a pig character from one of Zappa's songs), Zappa being attacked by monsters, and other weird imagery that fluidly morphs into other weird imagery. Bickford has done similarly weird stuff on his own accord. None of it was influenced by drug use, especially not the stuff he did with Zappa, who hated drugs.
  • While definitely not a animated film Twilight Zone: The Movie has a version of It's a Good Life segment that involves Anthony having powers to insert people into a saturday cartoon nightmare as well as creating a terrifying rabbit and a goblin-demon that gets more deranged in design as it continues to pester the residents of the house.
  • It's just for one frame, but The Care Bears: Adventure in Wonderland has a moment where the wizard is drawn with freakishly deformed features.
  • The Mexican animated movie El Santos vs La Tetona Mendoza not only really have insane animated sequences but also relies a lot in gross-out humor as well.
  • Getafix's hallucinations from Astérix And The Big Fight after he's gone insane and lost his memory.
  • The Rainbow Magic movie has this in Jack Frost's rap.
  • All the animated films of Henrik Moller.

     Western Animation Shorts and Music Videos  
  • The cartoon short that concludes Winsor Mc Kay's pioneering 1911 short Little Nemo is this. Characters stretch and shrink and materialize out of random lines; one character draws another.
  • Take one look at Woody Woodpecker's original design and tell me this isn't one of the most ugly things you've ever seen.
  • The music video of the song joey by the band BOY is just begging to have an explanation.
  • Myriad Harbor by The New Pornographers gives a whole new meaning to the term "hair band".
  • Ready, Able by the band Grizzly Bear is absolutely insane, and watching it under the influence of any mind altering substances is either a really awful, or incredibly great idea. The morphing depressed plasticine figures are scary, yet infinitely interesting.
  • The animation of Don Hertzfeldt. "My spoon is too big."
    • I AM A BANANA!
    • "MY ANUS IS BLEEDING!!" (Yeah!)
  • Sally Cruikshank is a queen of this trope. Some examples:
  • Every single thing in Nick's Random!Cartoons shorts collection, which was an attempt to capitalize on kids' obsession with surrealist humor and the non-sequitur.
  • Not sure if it qualifies here, but MTV used to air a lot of bizarre and, sometimes, downright nonsensical animated vignettes during their commercial breaks in the 90s.
  • The Looney Tunes short "Now Hear This", which manages to look like a dialogue free Disney Acid Sequence.
    • The climax of the short "Wearing of the Grin" is a bit unnerving, to say the least, with Porky Pig being forced to tap-dance in "the Green Shoes" through a surreal landscape as two leprechauns laugh at his misfortune.
    • The '90s short "Invasion of the Bunny Snatchers" starts out as a pretty standard "Body Snatchers" parody — then goes way off the deep end, using weird cheap animation for the invaders. (Though that was the point. Bugs himself called them "Robot Retreads" while thinking up a way to get things back to normal.)
    • "The Big Snooze" has Bugs Bunny invading one of Elmer Fudd's dreams and infecting it with some Nightmare Fuel.
    • Perhaps the strangest and most bizarre animated fare in all of Looney Tunes was "Porky in Wackyland". It's supposed to be bizarre, and they warn you ahead of time, but still, it was definitely over-the-top.
      • The backgrounds for the cartoon's remake, "Dough for the Do-Do", are even MORE surreal!
    • Anything made by Bob Clampett is Grade A Certified guaranteed to have at least some degree of this trope.
      • Particularly in scenes done by Rod Scribner who used a wacky, fast paced, rubbery animation style with often over the top expressions and wild takes.
  • John and Faith Hubley are masters of this trope.
  • The Video for "Weird Al" Yankovic's "Polka Face".
  • Tex Avery's MGM short "The Cat That Hated People" has its title character taking a rocket to the moon and encountering a lot of really weird shit.
    • Tex Avery in general. The "rules" of Western Animation were pretty well established by the time he came to MGM, and he had a fine time subverting each and every one of them.
  • The Squirrel Nut Zippers' video for " The Ghost of Stephen Foster" specifically mimics creepy old-timey cartoons like "Balloon Land" and similar, focusing in this case on a couple getting stuck in a haunted hotel.
  • This "Cosmic Clock" segment from 3-2-1 Contact manages to make geology trippy and unsettling.
  • O Canada.
  • The animated music video of Roger Glover's "Love is All" (sometimes known by the album title The Butterfly Ball), which used to pop up on HBO and Nickelodeon in the 80s. Full of crazy transformations, anthropomorphic animals wearing creepy masks, and other examples of why 70s animation was a cesspool of horror (unless you were a weird kid).
    • Fun fact : French TV watchers did see that music video many, many times. It was used during the Eighties as a fill-in by the 2nd TV channel (there were only 3 in France at the time) when experiencing "technical difficulties". Then some 90's syrup brand used the exact same song and animation on its commercials, which aired between every Saturday morning cartoon at the time. Perhaps it was that singing frog imagery that French people enjoyed so much...
    • It didn't help that the picture book it was based on was full of detailed paintings which very delicately portrayed the pattern of light and shade hitting an animal's fur. The animators duplicated this effect, then didn't alter it when the animals moved.
  • Spumco (the guys who did The Ren & Stimpy Show) did a video for "Weird Al" Yankovic's "Close But No Cigar", which features a rather perverted cat who latches onto beautiful young (human) women, gives them the intestines of small animals as gifts, and then messily devours the women at the first minuscule flaw he detects.
    • And when one is in a bathtub, and the cat has a straw and is drinking the water, it looks like the straw is going up... yeah...
    • Uh, no it doesn't. Someone has a deranged mind.
  • The video that Spumco did for Björk's "I Miss You", which is a thoroughly disturbing piece of art (you have to wonder what was going through John Kricfalusi's head when he designed this).
  • The Yogi Bear special that Kricfalusi did for Cartoon Network. You haven't lived until you've seen Boo-Boo, Yogi, and Cindy each revert to primitive, horrific animals... To be fair, it's only Boo-Boo and Cindy. Yogi never does reform to a primitive, horrific animal, as he is kept the straight man throughout the whole short.
  • From Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: Running Down a Dream, a homage to Little Nemo by Winsor McCay. the actual strip was just as insane.
  • Every single animated segment of Monty Python's Flying Circus, which somehow succeed in making even less sense than the actual sketches.
  • Nearly everything related to Chad VanGaalen, but in particular the video for his song "Molten Light", which he animated himself. The acid trip animation is not helped by the fact that the song is extremely disturbing by itself, on both a lyrical and aural level.
  • This is where we remind you of Gene Deitch's run on "Tom and Jerry". Ye gods...
  • 200, a trippy tribute to the US Bicentennial by Vincent Collins. Actually commissioned by the United States Information Agency.
    • More or less all of the creator's other work seems to fall under this - Fantasy and the much more nsfw Malice In Wonderland for instance.
  • Honda's "Hate" advert, and its associated web-advergame from a few years back. LSD trips to sell diesel engines.
    *jaunty tune* "Hate something/Change something/Hate something change something/Make something better...".
  • Fantasmagorie. One of the first ever animated anythings, and, naturally, it was trippy as shit...
  • The video for Lolipop by Mika.
  • The video for Pearl Jam's Do the Evolution, animated by Todd Mc Farlane of Spawn fame.
  • Here's a story from North America...
  • Disney shorts aren't so well known for this kind of thing, but when they get weird, they get weird. Case in point: Plutopia.
  • Swing You Sinners, possibly the Ur Example of a Disney Acid Sequence. As psychedelic as anything from the 60's, and yet it was made in the 30's.
    • ANY pre-code Fleischer cartoon fits this trope. "Swing, You Sinners" is probably the most extreme example, but there are plenty of others.
  • Tim Hope's Wolfman manages to be scarier than most live action horror movies.
  • The Breakfast Monkey was apparently made BEFORE Gerard Way was doing cocaine. It's surprisingly not that far off from what he made AFTER he sobered up.
  • "Love & Theft", by Andreas Hykade, featured in Stuttgart Animation Festival 2010: watch it here.
  • The Stop Motion Illuminant video by Efterklang has a pink animal with a baby doll for a head. That glows.
  • Jan Svankmajer things like animated meat love, people eating furniture, and increasingly violent football among other things. And you'll never look at Alice in Wonderland the same way again after seeing his movie Alice.
  • Olive the Other Reindeer. It looks as if it were made by a color-blind animator on acid.
  • Destino is what happens when Disney lets Salvador Dali do a cartoon. No, that is not a joke, Disney did have Dalí work on a short film back in the 1940s, but understandably never finished it. It was revived some fifty years later and unleashed in 2003 in all its surreal glory.
  • U2's video for Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me dip into this.
  • The animated parts of Cindy Lauper's music video of "She-bop". This is from the same guy who did Henry and June, after all.
  • Malice in Wonderland, a 1982 short by Vince Collins.
  • Butthole Surfers' "Who Was In My Room Last Night" mixes deranged animation with live action in order to represent the main character's drug trip. No one really seems to know who animated these segments, but reportedly Rob Zombie was involved, and some of it does look like his drawing style.
  • The music video for DYE's "Fantasy" (NSFW) starts getting deranged about halfway through, in a way that it's also terrifying.
  • The animation done for Pink Floyd's The Wall (done by Gerald Scarfe, who would later design Hercules of all things!). "The Trial" and "Empty Spaces" being glorious examples.
  • Les Elton's Monkeydoodle features bizarre surrealist landscapes, unsettling rotoscoped tigers, offensive anti-Semitic imagery, and jazz music. The only other surviving example of his "Simon the Monk" cartoons, The Hobo Hero, is just as strange, and more racist.
  • During most of the nineties and some of the early two thousands, there was an Argentine tv show shown and Sundays that was called Caloi en su tinta. In it, the titular Caloi, a recognized comic artist and writer for the country who sadly passed away in 2012, presented this kind of animation from all over the world. Most of the kids from that time would watch it and love it, even if it was scary sometimes, and Caloi was Savvy enough to walk right in front of the screen and cover it when something like a sex scene appeared. This was the opening to give you an idea of the show, and there are some shorts in Youtube as well.
  • The Offspring's "She's Got Issues", which features a young Zooey Deschanel seeing disturbed imagery around her.
  • This video for Screamer Claus' "Mutwa". It must be seen to be believed.
  • The music video for Peter Pan Speedrock's "Hard Rock Rules" looks like something John K. would do if you shot him up with heroin cut with LSD.
  • The backdrops for Paul McCartney's 2013 tour were pretty nuts, too.
  • The Rockin' with Rory segment of The Great Space Coaster television show had an animated music video of obscure origin that was Science Fiction themed and unlike any other animation featured on the show, it had no humorous elements and it was highly detailed and realistic, not cartoony. It was set to a somewhat uncharacteristically somber song by the show's band about dreamscapes (not what the band usually sings about). It featured a giant spaceship with a lone robot occupant visitng a stormy oceanic planet. The planet had an ruined Atlantis-type island with creepy Romanesque statues and a musical orchestra of faceless robots playing classical instruments. The robot orchestra is beamed aboard the giant spaceship for whatever reason. Like most of the animated shorts appearing on this shoestring budget childrens' show, it couldn't have been made for the show. It was probably made for something else even more obscure (possibly some project that ended up in Development Hell) but got bought by the show's producers as cheap filler. As far as what the story in the animated video was supposed to be is anybody's guess.

     Western Animation Series  
  • Æon Flux: The episodes made with no dialogue and with Aeon Flux dying in every episode make more sense than the later ones where she lives in the end and there is dialogue.
  • Nickelodeon is known for this, and you can thank Rugrats and The Ren & Stimpy Show for that.
  • Rocko's Modern Life, if only because of its extremely overdone art style.
  • Invader Zim. Everything is dark, full of sharp angles, dirty and neglected. The huge metropolis where the show takes place looks as uncaring and uncared for as the people that inhabit it. Some buildings look tall enough to look almost impossible. The characters, besides being darkly colored and being drawn with inhumanly sharp lines, are also disproportionate, with huge heads, triangle-shaped bodies and noodle-like limbs.
  • The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat
  • Many silent-era and pre-Code cartoons from The Golden Age of Animation lived and breathed this trope, including the original Felix the Cat. Early Betty Boop like Bimbo's Initiation, especially had a tendency to dispense with any semblance of reality just for the sake of a laugh. Or, sometimes, for the hell of it, as when a squadron of fighter planes turns into a flock of birds and back again.
  • The original Popeye animated series get progressively more bizarre in their gags the further you go back and realize Looney Tunes style, Cartoon Physics and other notions of what is real hadn't been standardized yet in early Western animation.
  • Superjail!! — and its short-lived partner in crime, Robotomy.
    • To a lesser extent, fellow Adult Swim alumnus Drinky Crow, and keep in mind that this is AFTER the executive meddling. Read the Maakies comic strip for the full eyeball salvo.
  • Some viewers of the claymation cartoon Gumby have assumed that its myriad surreal imagery was influenced by drug use. However, Gumby's creator Art Clokey claims that drugs were not an influence: "The strongest thing I've ever taken was coffee or orange juice." (The documentary Gumby Dharma reveals that Clokey did briefly experiment with LSD and other drugs in the late 60s, but this was after he made the classic Gumby shorts, and he had sworn off drugs by the time he returned to filmmaking.)
  • This. As the note beside the previous upload of this video said, "This is either the intro to the '70s era children's PBS program 'Vegetable Soup', or it's the first thing Jerry Falwell saw the moment he arrived in Hell."
  • Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog had a fair bit of this, though it's hard to tell when it's this or just plain Off Model.
  • A lot of 80s cartoons, but Rubix the Amazing Cube should have a special mention. This show is not comprehensible to any degree.
  • The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack is pretty much what happens when you try to remake The Ren & Stimpy Show (from its glory days on Nickelodeon, not its crummy autumn year on Spike TV) and get animators to do it that not even John K. would want — not because of his ego, but because he was too afraid of the artwork.
  • The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy.
  • Xavier: Renegade Angel
  • In The Simpsons episode "Krusty Gets Kancelled", when Itchy & Scratchy are bought out by a rival show, Krusty tries showing an incomprehensible Russian cat-and-mouse cartoon called Worker & Parasite, a parody of the Gene Deitch Tom and Jerry cartoons and Eastern European animation, which is known to be very surreal in nature. Naturally, Krusty's reaction is "What the hell was that?!"
  • Adventure Time!!!
    • The most notable example is the episode "A Glitch is a Glitch," which is animated entirely in 3-D and is purposefully made to look very, very buggy, as the entire world is a computer program that's been corrupted, resembling a bad video game beta. It has to be seen to be believed.
  • The Paraphenalia Wagon sequence from Halloween is Grinch Night. It stats about 2 minutes in and WHAT THE HELL.
  • This trailer for a German kids' movie.
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy's animation style is odd enough to provide a decent example of this trope (even though the show creator, Danny Antonucci did more deranged works than this, as seen with The Brothers Grunt and Lupo the Butcher — both of which were on MTV back in the days when all that was on that channel were music videos, shows about music videos like Headbangers Ball and Yo! MTV Raps, Beavis and Butthead [before and after it got in trouble for encouraging kids to do gross and destructive activities], The Real World, and whatever flavor-of-the-month cartoon they had on as a competitor to Beavis and Buttheadnote ), espeically with episodes like "1 + 1 = Ed."
  • Aqua Teen Hunger Force has an absolutely bizarre premise which would fit this trope on paper. And it would probably be more often if (A) they weren't animated immaculately in Flash, and (B) they weren't constantly aware of their deranged ways.
  • Courage the Cowardly Dog features several Art Shifts of varying displays of animation. Also, the art style is a bit unusual considering an injury has the character let out a goofy expression complete with idiotic laugh, which mostly happens to Courage.
  • Fanboy and Chum Chum's adventures are so bizarre and surreal they definitely fit this trope, but their status of "The Ren & Stimpy Show in CGI" is further strengthened by the very cartoony, Off Model in a John Kricfalusi way art style.
  • Whatever Happened to... Robot Jones?: The show looks something the people behind Schoolhouse Rock did after years of doing the educational shorts we all know, love, and remember more than what we were taught at school (or at home, if you were home-schooled).
    • The style actually looks more like the original 1970s version of "Schoolhouse Rock".
  • The Problem Solverz, with its brightly-colored animation and strange character designs. The pilot episode "Neon Knome" is the epitome of weird.
  • Squidbillies. Dan Halen with all his weird schemes and nonsense he inflicts upon Dougal County would count alone but Early Cuyler's life cranks it Up to Eleven. He has a "truck-boat-truck", which is exactly what it sounds like and equipped with massive monster truck tires. Plus there's unrelated craziness like a snake boy, a boy with sticks for arms and legs, and a field full of sheriff clones.
  • KaBlam! lives and breathes on this trope. Only a few shorts (and by "few", we mean enough to count on one hand) were grounded.
  • The Mushroom Samba sequences in the "Mayhem Night" episode of Motorcity are some of the trippiest of its kind, and rarely anything seen in a kid's, much less Disney, cartoon.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic is generally tame with its animation, but whenever Discord shows up and creates a World of Chaos, stuff like talking piles of apples, herds of eyeless rabbits with spider-like limbs, and pies appearing from thin air only to fall into the sky becomes commonplace.
  • Teacher's Pet, which probably has the most deranged animation out of any Disney show ever made.
  • Donkey Kong Country, mainly due to the extremely primitive nature of its CGI animation.

     Video Games  
  • Katamari Damacy gives you this impression right off the bat. After finishing the intro theme (which suspiciously involves lots of mushrooms), you'll already be wondering what drug the creators were on when they were making it. And it just keeps getting weirder from there. To start with, you play as a guy with a cylinder for a head rolling things up to make stars, and your dad, who is the king of the universe by the way, pukes rainbows that work as a teleporting device. Right.
  • The intro to The Beatles: Rock Band. It starts off normal, going on a whistle-stop tour through their career. Then it reaches the halfway point and - *BLAM* - the drugs kick in. Duuuude.
    • This one makes perfect sense though, if you consider that the point in the video where everything gets weird is the point in the band's career when drugs became a serious factor in the creation of new songs. The tune playing for most of that part is I Am The Walrus, for cryin' out loud!
  • This deliciously surreal Touhou fanvid which retells some of the story events of Silent Sinner In Blue combines semi-serious scenes with heartwarming nostolgia, art that is very on-model to the signature style of series creator ZUN, and many, many bizarre visual gags and memes. Also, Eirin dances!
    • The flash video for IOSYS's remixed remix of Reisen's leitmotif, It doesn't stop at the affected area, but goes deep inside and Aah Aaahn ~ The Final Udongein, is a completely surreal, semi-nightmarish glimpse into what you might see if she used her madness-inducing Lunatic Eyes on you.
  • UmJammer Lammy can get odd sometimes. This part of the game will have you wondering whether someone spiked Lammy's pizza, or the Parappa The Rapper universe is just that messed up.
  • The Legend of Zelda CDi Games
  • Tonic Trouble. It starts on top of a snow- and palmtree-covered mountain and gets crazier from there...
  • Yume Nikki. Most of the animation in question is walking loops. Still gives a lot of people nightmares.
  • The Super Mario series has plenty of creatures that are far from real, but Super Paper Mario has character designs which just don't make sense in three dimensions.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog. Various supersonic and often bizarrely colored anthropomorphic wildlife run around and fight a floating fat man with a big mustache and habit of building robots while collecting magical, floating gold rings, as well as bashing open TVs (later, bubble-like capsules). Make sense so far? They also need to find mystical gemstones which often form really weird pocket dimensions around themselves, and which can turn the animals into their Super Mode when they're all in one place. Despite being called emeralds, only one of them is green. Then come the time travel, and the hoverboarding, the dimension-hopping, and the cosmic horrors, and the books that people get pulled into when they read them, and mechanical flowers that talking bees sting so they can use them to teleport, and the magical alien squids that can fuse with people to give them temporary superpowers...
  • Technically, Paul Robertson's works are animations, not games, but they're all done in the style of video-game sprites. Kings of Power 4 Billion% is possibly the most deranged.
  • Any colored cutscene in the Thief series.
  • The cut-scenes in Alice: Madness Returns notably the first scene which is...disturbing, to say the least.
  • In the final battles in Hellsinker as well as the extra stages the graphic design goes from just wierd to just plain surreal.
  • Episode 11.5 of Asura's Wrath takes a Key Animator from FLCL, combines his talent with Studio 4°C, and mixes it with the already Crazy Awesome nature of the game to bring some really insane animation that will make you go "What the Hell just happened?"
  • Earnest Evans used multi-layered sprites to try and make the main character's movements more fluid. It...didn't work out.
  • "Fruit Mystery" loves this trope. You're an either extremely stupid or insane person who runs around feeding different foods to zoo animals until a timer runs out, then you get a giant Mind Screw at the end. It's horribly drawn and designed on purpose. And yes, it's just as funny as it sounds.

    Web Original 
  • This game. Sleep well. Though to be fair, it's pretty creative.
  • Anything by PES.
  • Egoraptor tends to use this a lot for the Awesome Series, though Awesome Reach is probably the most infamous.
  • Y'all so Stupid is entirely composed of this trope. This is the first of several. Probably NSFW, possibly seizure- and nightmare-inducing.
  • Thanks to the Programs "garry's mod" and "Source Filmmaker" people can now make short films staring the various characters from Valve video games. Some of these are VERY deranged indeed.
  • Ratboy Genius is animated in Blender, with unbelievably ugly models, very poorly. The effect is both trippy and scary.

    Real Life 
  • Human dreams are the Ur Example (whether you dream in live-action or animation). They don't make sense. They're not supposed to make sense. Crucial parts of the brain are deactivated. Things sorta make sense in context while you're dreaming, but are this trope after you wake up (if you dare to remember them).
    • It's been said that the average dream is 2 or 3 seconds long, but the brain is still trying to bash them into some kind of coherence, which is why weird things happen for no reason at all.


Circling BirdiesThe Silent Age of AnimationDisney School of Acting and Mime
Crush ParadeAnimation TropesDetail-Hogging Cover
The Dead Can DanceAbsurdity AscendantDigging to China
What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs?This Is Your Index on DrugsWine Is Classy
Conspicuously Light PatchThe Dark Age of AnimationDork Age
Collector of the StrangeImageSource/Anime & MangaDriven to Suicide

alternative title(s): Demented Animation
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