Slippery as an Eel
Of all the sea creatures in the world, alongside dolphins, octopuses, sea otters, and whales, the sneakiest sea creature alongside the shark would be the moray eel. In nearly every form of media, eels are depicted as being sneaky creatures that have a propensity for tricking other sea creatures. It's a sure sign that they cannot be trusted. In other words, they're basically the oceanic version of snakes. Actual sea snakes are Seldom-Seen Species, probably because they're far less intimidating-looking than moray eels.

Moray eels are the species most often used, due to their fearsome appearance, though the occasional Psycho Electric Eel may be used for this trope as well.


Anime and Manga

  • Flotsam and Jetsam from The Little Mermaid are a prime example of this trope.
  • There's an eel in The Water Babies film who's the lackey of the evil shark king. Don't recall if he was particularly sneaky in the trickster sense, but he was certainly a sycophantic brown-noser.
  • According to the song "You're a Mean One, Mr. Grinch" from How the Grinch Stole Christmas!, the Grinch is actually "cuddly as a cactus and charming as an eel."
  • Robin Hood: "You eel in snake's clothing!"
  • Morey from Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End has an eel's head and neck. He bites people in the face.

Live-Action TV

Video Games
  • In Freddi Fish, Eddie the Eel is depicted as a trickster who prevents Freddi and Luther from trying to go where they needed to, unless he is bribed.
  • Volteel Biblio from Mega Man Zero 3 is a very sneaky character, his level being particularly trap-infested and snaking through secret passages all over his Boss Fight arena to get the drop on you, being That One Boss of the game.
  • Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag: Spotted moray eels can be found hiding in seaweed, and they do attack Edward.
  • Super Mario Bros. examples:
    • Unagi the Eel is an infamous example from Super Mario 64. While not necessarily malicious, it does not appear to like Mario, as it will start roaring and swimming around if he comes close and contact with it causes damage. Unagi later becomes a type of enemy in New Super Mario Bros..
    • Eely-Mouth from Super Mario Sunshine is a monster eel (that appears to be a hermaphrodite, oddly enough) whose teeth are so bad that they somehow infect the water in Noki Bay, meaning Mario and FLUDD must go and clean things up, yet again.
    • Eels appear as enemies in Super Mario Galaxy.
  • Ogura, the Big Bad of the first two games in the Starfy series.
  • Kaiju Combat: Moratitan the giant moray is not particularly friendly.
  • Carrie's Order Up! has Reginald, an eel businessman, complete with hat and suitcase. Of course, his slipperiness is limited to trying slip in as long a lunch break as possible.