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Scooby Stack

When your characters need to see what's going on in that room over there, but they don't quite wanna risk coming all the way out into the open...

...when your characters all want to see rather than just sending one person to check so s/he can come back and tell the others, what do you do?

The Scooby Stack! We've all Seen It a Million Times in cartoons and comedies: one head pops out from behind a corner or doorframe. Another head pops out above the first. And one more above that.

Because Cartoon Physics works differently, you can even get a Scooby Stack of people popping out from behind a tree or other item too thin for the thinnest person to hide behind.

Though Scooby-Doo's Meddling Kids gets credit for Trope Namer, this trope may be Older than You Think.

Occasionally thwarted by someone surprising them by opening the door so they all fall on top of each other.

Not to be confused with the tall, stacked sandwiches enjoyed by Scooby and Shaggy.

Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • Done in episode 19 of Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood.
  • At least once on Eureka Seven, with the crew snooping on Renton and Eureka. Moondoggie is always on the bottom.
  • This scene from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha.
  • When investigating Mugen Academy in Sailor Moon, the "Inner Senshi" get a Sailor Stack, but they get discovered by a security guard and their resulting panic causes them to fall over (except Makoto, who was standing in back, being the tallest of them, and not leaning on anyone else).
  • Here in Mahou Sensei Negima!. With the inevitable conclusion here.
  • Comes up every now and then in Nerima Daikon Brothers, and lampshaded in episode 5, where the main characters pop up from behind a door, stacked horizontally, and stay in place until Hideki points out what they're doing.
  • Occurs in Bleach anime episode 138. While Captain Ukitake is talking to Rukia in the Soul society, his two lieutenants and Orihime Inoue perform one of these at the side of the doorway.
  • Ash and two Pokemon form one in a sewer during the Pokémon episode "Leading A Stray!"
  • FLCL episode "Full Swing". Haruko, Naota's father and the robot Canti look through the center of a door.
  • Yui, Mio and Ritsu from K-On! do it to spy on Tsumugi and Azusa. Then Azusa makes them fall.
  • In the final episode of Omamori Himari, we get a Scooby Stack featuring the entire Extended Harem. It's so tall, the camera has to pan up to have room for them all, and even then, the Ojou has to walk out into plain view since there's no more room along the doorframe.
  • Hanaukyō Maid Tai
    • Original series episode 7. While Taro is in the hot springs changing room his 3 personal maids form one around the corner of the door.
    • La Verite episode 8. Three of the security maids protecting Taro during a trip to the city do this behind a vending machine while following him.
  • Happens twice in Persona 4. Once when Chie and Yosuke spy on Kanji and Naoto and again when the rest of the group spies on Kanji and Hanako on the camping trip.
  • Mars Daybreak has one in Episode 13 where Clara, Poipoider, Milch, Grahms, Enora and a robot were watching a lovely scene between Aki and Selina.
  • In Ghost Stories, the group does this and Hajime (in the English Dub) points out how he's "on top".

     Comic Books 

     Fan Works 
  • Used in this fan-made Youtube video featuring five of the Disney Dudes forming a boy band after Cinderella, Belle, Mulan, Ariel, and Jasmine break up with them.

    Film 
  • The Three Stooges did this all the time.
  • The Little Rascals may also have done it a few times.
  • Charlie's Angels
  • The Movie of On the Town has this when Ozzie, Claire, Chip, Hildy and Gabey are hiding behind a corner on top of the Empire State Building.
  • In Monty Python and the Holy Grail, the French taunters do this.
  • Happens in The Spanish Inn when the tenants want to find out how the negotiation between Xavier and the landlord is going, but don't dare get involved themselves.
  • X-Men: First Class: Beast, Angel, Darwin, Banshee and Mystique do one despite Havok's warning for them to keep back because of how unpredictable his powers are.
  • Done in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.
  • Happens in the animated version of Astérix and Cleopatra. Caesar sends three triplet Egyptian mercenaries to capture Getafix on the building site. They stack at the corner of a tent.
  • Done in Ghostbusters II when the Scoleri brothers wreak havoc in the courtroom.

     Live Action TV 
  • A Thanksgiving episode of Friends had half the cast looking around a bolted door like this for most of the episode. It was lampshaded by Chandler, who referred to them as "the floating heads".
  • The kids in El Chavo del ocho did it when spying on Dońa Clotilde's house.
  • Pushing Daisies episode "Dim Sum Lose Sum".
  • Heroes S3 episode "Our Father".
  • Once in Salute Your Shorts.
  • Done a lot on Welcome Back, Kotter.
  • That's So Raven has the three main characters look around the corner like this in one episode.
  • Done in an episode of Hannah Montana where Oliver, Lilly and Miley are stacked up like this watching Jackson fail to convince Robbie Ray to up his curfew.
  • Chuck
  • The 2000 TNT Original version of Don Quixote did this at one point, with Don, Sancho Panza, and Sancho's donkey all peering around a boulder.
  • Misfits has one with Curtis, Simon, and Rudy pondering the presence of Seth the Power Broker in the Community Centre.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer used this in the episode "What's My Line, Part II." When Xander and Cordelia are leaving Buffy's house they peek around a corner Scooby-Stack-style. This episode also features the first labeling of the Buffy crew as the "Scooby Gang."
  • Doctor Who:
    • The Doctor, Clara, Angie, and Artie stick their heads out of the TARDIS door in the episode "Nightmare In Silver".
    • The Second Doctor and his companions while they are peeking out of a London Underground tunnel in "The Web of Fear".
  • The X-Files: Agents Mulder and Scully look this way into Izzy Berkowitz's room in "Post-modern Prometheus". Mrs Berkowitz is looking directly, standing in front of the door.
  • Ultraman Mebius episode "An Old Friend's Visit". Complete with anime sound effects.
  • Often used in promotional shots for sitcoms. Frasier has a promo photo where the cast, including Eddie the wonder-dog, are stacked around the doorframe of Frasier's apartment, with Frasier at the bottom looking rather put-upon. Everybody Loves Raymond used a similar promo photo, with Ray at the bottom trying vainly to shoo them out of his house.
  • In one episode of How I Met Your Mother, the entire gang are trapped in Barney's apartment and don't wish to be spotted by him, but they peek at him and his date through a door and their stacked heads form the stock pose.
  • Ally McBeal: When Ally is breaking up with Larry, the entire office spy on her and try to learn the latest gossip or see how she's coping. At one point, they all (minus Richard who is in LA) stick their heads in her door and immediately pull them out when Ally notices them.

    Music 
  • The Beatles posed this way several times. The shot used for the picture sleeve for the American "Lady Madonna" single is one example; another can be seen here.
  • Although it only has two people, one of these is featured in the Mission: Impossible cover by Lindsey Stirling and The Piano Guys, with her and Steven peering around the corner of a deserted corridor when trying to infiltrate the building to steal music.

    Theatre 

     Video Games 

    Webcomics 

    Web Original 
  • Done in episode 9 of RWBY by team JNPR and three of the four members of RWBY as Wiess realises they're late for class and rushes off. Lampshaded when JNPR all fall on top of each other.
  • College University did this once - with Parks, Jay, and "Macho Man" Randy Savage.
  • Hardly Working deconstructs this in its sketch "Snooping": each consecutive person on top crushes the bottom guy more and more until his head explodes.
  • In the "Gay Chicken" episode of commodoreHUSTLE, Alex, Kathleen and Kathleen's cat do this when Morgan asks if he can stay with them for a few days.
    Graham: ...we're full.
  • The kittens in this photo.
  • The otters in this photo.

     Western Animation 
  • Scooby-Doo, as the Trope Namer naturally.
  • You can also spot the Scooby Stack on every one of the Hanna-Barbera teenage sleuth cartoons:
  • Happens in the title sequence and in-show on Jakers! The Adventures of Piggley Winks.
  • Jimmy, Sheen and Carl do it in a mystery-solving episode of Jimmy Neutron.
  • Used many, many times in Looney Tunes shorts.
  • My Life as a Teenage Robot in "Mama Drama" has the Behind a Stick example.
  • Total Drama Island:
    • Izzy, Eva and Noah perform one in the season one finale while waiting for Justin.
    • Bridgette and Courtney do it in "Not Quite Famous" from behind a curtain.
  • Played With in one episode of Sponge Bob Square Pants that focuses on SpongeBob trying to train Gary, his pet snail, for the coming snail race. After unsuccessfully trying to get Gary to practice sprints a couple of times, but Gary immediately goes to watch the television, Squidward leans in a nearby window to taunt Spongebob and boast about his purebred snail's chances of success. Cue Patrick leaning in the window above, boasting about his "snail"(it's actually a rock). Squidward lampshades when he asks what Patrick is standing on, cutting to the outside of the windows to see Patrick actually standing on Squidward's back. When Squidward later leaves, Patrick falls out of the window he's in and then pops back in Squidward's window.
  • Jay, Cole and Zane do it behind a column in the first episode of Ninja Go: The Way of the Ninja.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic has done it in at least one episode with Big Macintosh, Applejack and Granny Smith. It's been turned into a macro.
  • Done in Max Fleischer's Gullivers Travels with the goofy spies Sneak, Snoop and Snitch.
  • In one episode of Super Mario World, Mario and Luigi peer behind a wall to spy on Cheatsy with Yoshi sticking his head vertically in between them.
  • The Tom and Jerry short "Johann Mouse" has five people popping their heads through a door in order to listen to Tom's piano playing.
  • Strawberry Shortcake Berry Bitty Adventures has Lemon, Raspberry, Blueberry and Plum all Scooby Stacking in Lemon's doorway doing the "after you, no after you" schtick to avoid being the first to say something they fear will hurt Lemon's feelings.
  • Legend Of Korra: has one in "The Guide". The adult and child halves of Tenzin's family each peep in on opposite sides of a doorway.
  • In the episode of Avatar: The Last Airbender called "Sokka's Master", Aang and Katara do this while watching Sokka create his space sword.


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