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Grotesquecute

"...and he kept stabbing them, again and again... He's a halfling, he's supposed to be jolly... Why isn't he jolly? WHY ISN'T HE JOLLY???"

Generic Cuteness is taken for granted. You have all manner of strange things depicted as cute. But way past the vampire loli, you have the deliberately over-the-top depictions, where Sickeningly Sweet saccharine cuteness is depicted with wild, graphic violence.

For obvious reasons, these situations are more common in shows dabbling in satire.

See also: Cute and Psycho, Enfant Terrible, Killer Rabbit, Girl with Psycho Weapon, Cute Monster Girl, Art-Style Dissonance. Can be a pretty deep well of Nightmare Fuel. Based on the same principle as Fan Disservice.

Compare with Kawaisa.

Not to be confused with Ugly Cute or finding Joseph Merrick intensely lovable (see What Measure Is a Non-Cute?).


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

     Anime/Manga  
  • Alien Nine, the manga gets worse.
  • Bludgeoning Angel Dokuro-chan
  • Excel Saga
  • Elfen Lied. The Diclonii are, to a one, completely adorable girls with a pair of small horns on their head that make them look something like catgirls. Unfortunately, they are, with only a single exception, also heartless, murderous, superpowered psychopaths who can (and frequently do) forcibly and violently separate anyone nearby from their limbs and/or head.
  • From Fullmetal Alchemist, Pride. Aww, look at the cute little boy. Say, why are the shadows moving towards me and why do they have eyes and sharp teeth? Wait... ARGH!
  • Road Kamelot in D.Gray-Man certainly qualifies. She looks no more than twelve - yet in one of her first appearances she stabs the main character's eye with a candle, then licks the blood off afterwards.
  • Doubt - if you read later on... Grotesque cuteness indeed.
  • Higurashi no Naku Koro ni and Umineko no Naku Koro ni, with the latter being even worse
  • Cat Soup and related animations.
  • Black Lagoon's Creepy Twins, Hansel and Gretel.
  • Dai Mahou Touge
  • Narutaru, once the Mood Whiplash kicks in. Things keep getting worse from there.
  • The main School Days series was already infamous for its bloody finale... And then comes the Magical Heart Kokoro-chan OVA, with the eponymous loli helping pilot a giant Hello Kitty, chainsaw-wielding Combining Mecha, ripping apart the enemy and drowning the city in a sea of blood. Yeah...
  • The giant milk-bleeding stuffed animals in AKIRA.
  • Karakuridouji Ultimo has elements of this. Especially with characters like Ultimo, Mizho, and Hana.
  • Franken Fran veers back and forth between this and horrific.
  • Many of the creations by Henmaru Machino, where Hentai and extreme sexual pathology meets Kawaii.
  • The manga Death Panda by the notorious Gorn artist Uziga Waita.
  • The theme park from the Mad Pierrot episode of Cowboy Bebop uses this a lot. Some scenes of the destruction of cutesy park mascots, and their use as weapons, are terrifying.
  • Everyone in Mirai Nikki, mainly thanks to a certain Yuno Gasai...
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica. Third episode.
    • The same scene in the manga version is even worse.
  • Shizuku from Hunter × Hunter embodies this trope, being essentially a childish collection of moe tropes who happens to be a member of the most bloodthirsty group of criminals on the plannet.
    • Her first appearance has her acting completely moe and scatterbrained, losing a round of arm wrestling to Gon because she forgot that she's left handed. Her second appearance has her smashing two named characters' heads into paste with a completely stoic expression.
  • Pandora Hearts. EVERYONE works with this trope, but the ultimate would have to be Lily. She's an adorable little girl....who has a demonic dog who can and will rip your throat out. And that's ignoring the fact that she made THIS FACE.

     Comic Books  

    Fanfiction 

    Film 

    Literature 
  • In Dean Koontz' book, Brother Odd, the title character encounters a manufactured animal who is the epitome of mindless cuteness. Mindless, in that it has no mind or soul and is therefore profoundly disturbing rather than cute.

     Live Action TV  
  • The puppets in the Angel episode "Smile Time".
  • The suicidally depressed giant teddy bear in the Supernatural episode "Wishful Thinking".
  • The Criminal Minds episode "Uncanny Valley" was aiming for this as a general feel. It was an episode where the Unsub, who had her dolls taken away from her by her father kidnapped humans to serve as her dolls. It came complete with very kid-friendly music throughout.

    Music 
  • Invoked in the music video for "Bloodline" by Slayer, where a kitten can briefly be seen lapping up a pool of blood.
  • Too many Rin and/or Len songs to count. A few examples? Any Evillous video where they play an incarnation of Hansel or Gretel, Trick and Treat, Karakuri Burst....et cetera.

     Tabletop Games  
  • The titular Mons in Pokethulhu are cute. Eldritch Abominations, granted, but cute Eldritch Abominations. They'll also attack you and try to devour your soul if you're not careful.
  • In Mortasheen, this is invoked by the Schmeep, who is completely adorable, and is meant to heal your party. Of coruse, it does this by cheerfully letting itself be eaten alive. Word of God says it was based on the Schmoo.
  • Vampire: The Masquerade's vampires keep the looks (and age) they had at a moment of their death and vampiric transformation. So, it's possible to meet (or play as) a hundreds of years old undead monster, who looks like an angel-faced 10 years old.
    • Pushed Up to Eleven in the old (and VERY disturbing) Montreal sourcebook (made by White Wolf's "Black Dog" imprint, which in itself should be considered a warning), where not only is there an angel-faced 10-year-old vampire -who's her pack's warrior- but the local vamps' unofficial mascot is a limbless dwarf Samedi (vampires who look like rotting corpses) who they use in a variety of gory "games", like "bob the apple" but with humans stuck up to their necks in a flour silo. No points for guessing the place is a Sabbat stronghold.
  • Pathfinder goblins can fall into this, when their funny little songs and childish antics crash hard against their general violence and destructiveness.

     Video Games  
  • Portal turrets are a combination of this, More Dakka and Psychopathic Manchild, but without the blood or gorn shown.
    • "Dispensing product."
  • Gears of War (a game widely known for its Gorn) has the Big Heads mutator, which gives everyone a near-Super-Deformed appearance plus a higher pitched voice.
  • Peggle Extreme, a demo of the Pop Cap game included with The Orange Box, features Peggle's lovable unicorn mascot Bjorn being eaten by a headcrab.
  • Child Alma from First Encounter Assault Recon.
  • SD Snatcher, despite the Super-Deformed characters, is just as gory as the original Snatcher. There's something strangely beautiful about seeing an adorable chibi with his head grotesquely twisted off.
  • The player characters in the Playstation Network game Fat Princess are adorable chibi fighters, wizards, and such... who bleed copiously when injured or killed.
  • Freeware game Yume Nikki has this in spades.
  • Meowcenaries
  • Cannon Fodder is a(n in)famous example—it's the trope namer for War Has Never Been So Much Fun, but it also attempts to avert Do Not Do This Cool Thing, with bloody results.
  • Robbie the Rabbit, the mascot of the Silent Hill Amusement Park is a pink bunny wearing a blue overall whose most prominent feature is the blood-stained mess on his mouth and clothes. Heather from the third game says that "it is more creepy than it is cute". Coming from a girl who has deadpan snarked her way through the eponymous town, without batting an eye to the overall gory insanity around her, this says a lot.
  • Conkers Bad Fur Day and Conker Live and Reloaded.
  • The Chubbchubbs.
  • Gloomy Bear
  • American Mc Gees Grimm seems to have taken this direction in its art design.
  • Skull Panda.
  • Ms. Fortune in Skullgirls is a cute Cat Girl, in more ways than one. Then she attacks with High Pressure Bloody Murder and Detachment Combat.
  • Dahlia Hawthorne in Phoenix Wright: Trials and Tribulations is extremely cute and beautiful, even with pure white butterflies flitting about her. However, at the end of the first trial, after she's been proven guilty of murder, she actually incinerates her butterflies with pure rage.
  • PETA's Cooking Mama ripoff. The cute jingly music doesn't make it any less hilariously Narmful.
  • Eversion: An adorable little orange flower brutally splattering his enemies when he jumps on them.
  • Both of The Behemoth's games, Alien Hominid and Castle Crashers.
    • Dan Paladin's artstyle in general. See Dad 'n Me.
  • The Creeper from Advance Wars: Days of Ruin. Flowers are pretty. Which makes a bio-weapon that makes flowers sprout from underneath and fatally turn you into a floral display in a most painful manner all the more disturbing.
  • Fairytale Fights.
  • Kingdom of Loathings Iiti Kitty, a mummified Hello Kitty.
    She wrenches open the lid of a nearby sarcophagus, and countless articles of stationery, toiletries, and household goods with her face on them pour out. My god, she's everywhere! Aargh!
    • In the Kingdom of Loathing universe, seals aren't adorable fuzzy flopping creatures as in real life; they're hideous, shambling, bloodsucking monstrosities that happen to look like adorable fuzzy flopping creatures, one of which looks more like a mutated leech than any land mammal. That said, one familiar you can acquire as a Seal Clubber is an Adorable Seal Larva, which intersperses descriptions of it sucking the blood from your opponent and bursting into an enemy's corpse so it can regurgitate a healing fluid into your body with gushing about how adorable the thing is.
  • Considering how cartoony the characters in the Metal Slug series are, some of them die in fairly bloody ways.
  • Messiah has the contrast between Bob, a sweet, chubby cherub who looks like a winged baby in a diaper, and the violence and brutality throughout the game (a lot of it inflicted by Bob himself.)

     Web Comics  
  • Nana's Everyday Life, has the art style of a manga for little children; plays the mental, emotional, physical and sexual abuse of an underaged girl for laughs. Very dark laughs. Until it stops being funny.
  • This Something Positive strip.
    • If you think that's bad, try this one..
    • The Little Blue Thing, aka Fluffmodeus. He's like an '80s cartoon character who Care-Bear-Stared a little too long into the abyss...
      "It only takes seven pounds of pressure to break a human skull... FROM THE INSIDE. Kisses now!"
  • Kiki playing with No Content from Sluggy Freelance: it gets bloody quick.
  • Ursula Vernon's Little Creature.
  • Charby the Vampirate is described as an ultra-violent Saturday morning cartoon, with adorable characters who will occasionally eviscerate or suffocate their many victims, brutally, with no Gory Discretion Shot. The combo is especially obvious with Mye, the zombie girl who smells sweet despite 315 years of decay, plus the unhealed slit in her chest where she got a sweet heart transplant. Her Evil Eyes are bubblegum pink.
    • Mye isn't decaying,(she is a traditional zombie, not a Hollywood/Romero zombie)the sweet smell is candle wax and gummy bears, two things she spends a lot of time with. And her brother's eyes are pink, too!
  • Perry Bible Fellowship. Where to even begin?
  • Erf World, with the incredibly cute and adorable-looking, child-like midgets engaged in brutal, unending wars for no real, discernible reason.
  • Double Happiness
  • Arcturus Winrock from Suicide for Hire is downright ADORABLE with those big Puppy-Dog Eyes of his but he DOES have a dark side to him.....
  • Drowtales presents the amaceing Mili'ani!
  • The Unspeakable Vault (of Doom) is a Lighter and Softer look at the Cthulhu Mythos—for instance, its cartoonishly-drawn "Cthulhoo" says "yum yum" every time he eats an unfortunate cultist. But it's still the Cthulhu Mythos, and the gore factor actually goes up compared to Lovecraft's work. It'd be Mood Whiplash if the death and dismemberment weren't so heavily integrated into the comic alongside the silliness.
  • Nepeta Leijon from Homestuck qualifies for this. She's a Moe Cat Girl who kills wild animals for food with her Wolverine Claws.
    • The other Trolls do as well, albeit to a lesser extent. This seems to be a fact of which they are both aware and proud, given that they decide to call themselves "Team Adorabloodthirsty."
    • Homestuck in general qualifies. It starts off simply being about a kid who is celebrating his thirteenth birthday by playing a new game. Then the game turns out to cause The End of the World as We Know It and summon monsters wearing jester hats to torment the protagonist, and it only gets worse from there on out. It becomes more clear later on, with Jack Noir slaughtering an army, a children's show's characters turning out to be representations of "horror terrors" and comic relief character Gamzee going Ax-Crazy and deciding he needs to kill all his friends.
      • The diaries of Vriska's ancestornote  suggest that this is not only normal, but expected and encouraged of trolls of Gamzee's rank; in troll society, such traits are considered the mark of strong leadership skills.
    • Also, Caliborn. One of the first things we see him do after his proper revel is gnawing off his leg, causing him to get covered in his own blood. As for his personality, he's a sociopath of a Jerk Ass that seems to find the sight of his "sister's" friends dying/being knocked out hilarious. All that being said and done, he still has large, rather adorable eyesnote , and as a cherub, he's the pinnacle of Ugly Cute.
  • In an attempt to tone down the violence and make the strip more viewer friendly (or so we are told), Kagerou brings us "cute chibi blood".
  • The Order of the Stick: The stick figure art makes everything look much cuter than it would in a more realistic style. And yet you still get characters like Xykon and Belkar and quite a bit of violence. In particular, Tsukiko sleeps with an adorable Xykon plushie, and Belkar is a fuzzy-footed halfling of chibi proportions who gleefully stabs everyone who crosses him or has something he wants.
    • And, then you get the Implosion spell shown in its full gory glory. Or Familicide: just... everything about it as the implications just snowball. If you don't shudder at those strips, something's wrong.
  • Sonichu unintentionally falls into this. It looks a lot like something your seven year old child would draw, with creatures that are a combination of Sonic the Hedgehog and Pokémon, with an Author Avatar that is the mayor of the town and cartoon-y villains. However, it features graphic sex scenes and true to this trope, scenes where a bunch of Internet trolls are tortured to death, including one getting drilled in the groin by a little girl.

     Web Original  

     Western Animation  

Girl Scouts Are EvilSubverted InnocenceHair-Raising Hare
Creepy CrossdresserEvil Is VisceralNo Yay
Generic CutenessRule of CuteHair Decorations

alternative title(s): Agorable
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