Small Annoying Creature

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/annoyingcritter_9294.jpg
Creatures like this are guaranteed to get on your nerves.
Navi: Hey! Listen! Get up! Get up! Get up getupgetupgetupgetup—
*Wack!*
Link: Dude! Seriously! Shut! Up!

A staple of 1980s adventure cartoon shows, the Small Annoying Creature is a type of Sidekick. The Small Annoying Creature is there to be cute, provide comic asides and occasionally get into trouble and need rescuing. Often a "merchandising critter." note  Sometimes it's crossed with the Nonhuman Sidekick. It frequently has a Verbal Tic - and truly obnoxious nails-on-blackboard voice talent.

There was a time when even the most straight-faced of animated adventure serials had a Small Annoying Creature to provide a bit of slapstick in the background.

Saw a revival in the mid-2000s when CGI became the norm for children's animation, with many films featuring them prominently in advertising material.

Note that this trope is for characters who are annoying to the other characters, not just to the audience.

See also Weasel Mascot, Talking Animal, Cute but Cacophonic, Exposition Fairy. If the Small Annoying Creature is a dog, it's a Mister Muffykins. Often overlaps with Gratuitous Animal Sidekick, Robot Buddy and Kid-Appeal Character.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime 
  • Aria Pokoteng, the president cat from ARIA, arguably fits here. Many fans still accept or even enjoy his role in the manga, since he has no speaking role and generally doesn't divert too much attention from the main characters. His loud and obnoxious habit of chewing scenery in the anime puts quite a few viewers off though.
  • 7-Zark-7, introduced to pad out the gaps left by censorship in Battle of the Planets. Then he gets 1-Rover-1, a robot's robotic pet! Who eats nuts and bolts, yet!
  • Berserk: Puck is a small, cutesy Fairy Companion sidekick who follows Guts while cracking jokes and nagging him to have a better attitude. At first Guts is annoyed by him and threatens to squash him like a bug a couple of times. It's only when Puck proves useful in his constant healing and driving away ghosts that Guts warms up to him. Schierke's Fairy Companion Ivalera shares this role for the group after she's introduced.
  • Kon from Bleach devolved into this as soon as they put him in a stuffed animal.
    • Strangely, he looses this trait every time he possesses Ichigo's body.
      • Chiefly because the intent is for him to do the fighting on Ichigo's behalf. Kon is some kind of renegade who isn't fully compliant to whatever arrangement souls like him are normally part of, which is why they keep him in a harmless stuffed toy while he's not in use (which is why he turns into this trope; he can't really fight, and thus has no meaningful contribution to anything).
  • Angel-Gozen from Busou Renkin.
  • Sumomo from Chobits is a Small Annoying Robot Girl. She talks in an unbelievably grating high-pitched voice, and her Catch Phrase is "WARNING! WARNING! WARNING!"
  • Giru from Dragonball GT.
  • From Inuyasha, there's Shippou. He's small and he's annoying. However, he seems to be the Only Sane Man sometimes.
  • Guvava, Mylene Jenius's pet in Macross 7.
  • Parodied in Magical Project S. Magical Project S and the Pretty Sammy OVAs are the only installments of the franchise where Ryo-Okhi talks. After a few episodes, one quickly realizes why she doesn't talk in the other series. As Magical Project S and all of the Pretty Sammy series are a direct parody of Sailor Moon, Ryo-Okhi is supposed to be annoying.
  • In the TV adaptation of Nurse Angel Ririka SOS, Maruru the "fairy advisor" plays this trope very, very straight. She/he/it has a grating voice and comes with a Verbal Tic: appending "maru" to the ends of sentences.
  • Happosai from Ranma .
  • Soul Eater: EXCALIBUUUR! EXCALIBUUURRR! From the United Kingdom...
    • Despite how annoying he is, he still ends up near the top of the popularity polls. FOOL!
  • Emusa in Transformers Zone.
  • Nono, "small robot you know, friend of" Ulysses 31.
  • The Ojama Trio in Yu-Gi-Oh! GX are supposed to irritate the hell out of people - such as Manjoume Chazz, to whom they're attached and who is absolutely horrified about it.
  • The Tyke Bomb flying squirrel in Zettai Karen Children. Fortunately he's not around very much.
  • Murugu from YuYu Hakusho. She's even considered an annoyance In-Universe.

    Comics 
  • Any of the Preservers from ElfQuest, but especially Petalwing.
    • Their annoyingness is intentional, and their preserving cocoons do have a serious purpose.
  • Kitty Pryde's tiny pet dragon Lockheed.
  • Any of the Super Pets, really.

    Films Animated 
  • Gurgi in Disney's adaptation of The Black Cauldron. Although so we're all clear on this, the character was also in the books, and his portrayal was actually pretty faithful.
  • The sandmurks, in The Flight of Dragons, whose screechy noises will literally drive the listener mad. (Note that in this case, the small creature is meant to be annoying.)
  • Gabby from Max Fleischer's Gulliver's Travels. No bigger than a pin, has an obnoxiously shrill voice, and a personality as lovable as a mosquito, he has permanently etched the word "THERE'S A GIANT ON THE BEACH!" into the minds of many animation fans forever. Its certainly a surprise that he was popular enough to warrant a Spin-Off series to him, short lived as it was.
  • Dutifully parodied with "Mr. Skipperdoo" in the "Mr. Incredible and Pals" short included with The Incredibles DVD — ostensibly an unaired cartoon pilot within the characters' universe.
    • Even more hilarious than the cartoon is the commentary with Frozone and Mr. Incredible, who both hate the rabbit.
      Frozone: And that rabbit is getting on my LAST nerve!
  • Bladebeak in Quest for Camelot.
  • Shrek said it best: "You SMALL, IRRITATING, MINIATURE BEAST OF BURDEN!"
  • Lampshaded in Shrek 2.
    Donkey: "I'm sorry, the position of Annoying Talking Animal has already been taken!"
  • In Bartok the Magnificent, there's Bartok himself. And also, there's that strange-looking pink snake-like creature with jingling bells, Piloff.
    • This was a favored trope of Don Bluth in general- so much to the point one briefly appeared in his last movie, Titan A.E., and immediately gets shot by a laser.

    Films Live-Action 
  • The small alien creature in the film Lost in Space that Penny finds. Its whole role in the film was to be cute and provide some slapstick.
  • Frank the Pug from the first and second Men in Black films.
  • The Star Wars movies have 2 characters who fit into this profile, despite being man-sized:
    • Jar Jar Binks fits this trope in Episode I. His antics get him into trouble, after which someone smarter needs to save him. Their method of solving this in Episodes II and III was to make him a representative in the Galactic Senate and greatly reduce his screen time without writing him out completely.
    • C-3PO also fits this trope in that he is annoys the other good guys with his constant complaining. Especially during tense situations. Chewbacca even turned him off once, to the delight of Leia.
    • Salacious Crumb (the cackling thing that hangs out with Jabba the Hutt) is another deliberately annoying character from Return of the Jedi. Thankfully for fans, he's not in the film for long.

     Literature 
  • Carla's hamburger hat thing in The Red And The Rest is not especially well-liked by her uncle and seems to get them in trouble rather than serve any useful purpose. It's stated that she only keeps it around because it was her dead father's gift to her, plus it's implied that the hat has gotten more active as of the beginning of the story.

    Live-Action TV 

    Podcasts 
  • The Jade Regent Campaign from RPGMP3 features a character called Spivey, a Lyrakien Cleric of Desna. Spivey used to live in a cemetery, until the PCs came by. She then joined their caravan and followed them on their quest, quickly earning the nickname "Death Pixie", since most of her skills were focused on graveyard maintenance, at that point. She's always flitting around, dispensing invaluable moral advice and trying to get the PCs to be nicer to each other.

Spivey: There'sacoupletravellersahead! Weshouldfeedthem.
Harold: Ah, Spivey! How do you fly with that heart of gold?
Spivey: Oh, well... Desna gives me wings!
Misty: Her heart is made out of gold?! How do you know? [Visibly starts to ponder whether she should reach in, pull it out and check]
Harold: Y'know, with the Good Outsiders, I wouldn't be surprised.
Misty: [Grabs Spivey and shakes her] She's not heavy enough to have a heart made of gold?
Koya: Misty, that's not how we usually hug!
Jade Regent, episode 13

    Video Games 
  • Poshul from Chrono Cross, a hideous pink dog that acts like a Scooby-Doo caricature mixed with You No Take Candle.
    Actual Poshul quote: Me will use my Pwetty-Miwacle-Power-X! Me will do it, Sergeipoo!
  • Leonard's pact-partner the malicious fairy in Drakengard.
  • Most Moogles in general from the Final Fantasy games, when they become anything more than fluffy balls of cute:
    • Montblanc from Final Fantasy Tactics Advance has bad stats, says "kupo" all the time and looks more cartoonish than his friend Marche.
    • Mog from Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles is supposed to be carrying the chalice, and yet he complains about being tired only seconds before you get surrounded by some 20-odd monsters.
    • Mog from Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo's Dungeon being a fully-voiced Moogle, is notorious.
    • Hurdy from Final Fantasy Tactics A2 averts this by actually being useful as far as Bards go.
    • Cait Sith from Final Fantasy VII is not a Moogle, but rides on a stuffed one. He has only two Limit Breaks, neither of which are very useful, and sticks out like a sore thumb in what is one of the darkest games in the series.
  • Daxter fits much of this in the Jak and Daxter series. He spends the majority of the franchise complaining, insulting, getting abused, and uselessly resting on his partner's shoulder. He's obviously the comic relief, though as the franchise progresses, he gets more and more chance to actively help out his friends.
  • Bumble from Kinectimals, possibly.
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time has Navi. She starts off being helpful, but she becomes quite a nuisance with her constant buzzing around and yelling, "Hey! Listen!"
  • Teddie from Persona 4, as he is a living Hurricane of Puns.
  • Murfy from Rayman 2/3
  • Mieu from Tales of the Abyss — as lampshaded repeatedly by Luke, who constantly abuses the poor thing by stepping on it, kicking it or using it as an impromptu club, all because it pisses him off. And it's all played for comedy.
    • And referring to him as "Thing", because he can't figure out what sort of animal he is.
    • In the Japanese version, Luke calls him "butasaru," which means "pig monkey."
    • Admittedly, Luke is the only one who does this, and after his Important Haircut wherein he ceases to be Ambassador Asshat, he takes more kindly to Meiu and only goes back to his Jerkass ways when Meiu embarrasses him in front of Tear
  • World of Warcraft has dozens of "non-combat" pets you can buy or find. Most of them are innocuous, but you can shut off the audio for the ones that are annoying. However, when Lil' XT was first introduced it shared a sound file with the full-sized XT-002 Deconstructor from Ulduar; therefore the pet sounds cutoff didn't work. The week after its introduction there were dozens of them running around Dalaran screaming "I guess it doesn't bend that way!" and "I'm ready to play!" and you COULD NOT MAKE IT STOP. It was eventually hotfixed, but the scars remain...
  • Chu Chu from Xenogears, a mostly-serious giant robot RPG that inexplicably had a cute pink animal that enlarged to enormous size.
    • Then there's its Xenoblade counterpart, Riki the Heropon, although at least he's useful as a party member and serves as a deconstruction of the usual trope in that he's actually 40 years old, has a huge litter of children he's struggling to feed and being named "Heropon" is Nopon shorthand for "title given out to Nopon who find themselves deep in debt and must work it off by slaying monsters that threathen other Nopon or die trying".
  • In the Super Robot Wars series, Chika is this to Shu Shirakawa. Considering Shu has Nerves of Steel, seeing him getting annoyed by Chika is just hilarious.
    Chika: "Now you will learn to fear the power of Granzon the cheater!"
  • Cedric The Owl from King's Quest V was infamous for being one of the first annoying video game sidekicks. The fact he is completely useless except for the very end where he becomes the Chekhov's Gunman, does nothing but overstate the obvious "Look out Graham! that bear looks dangerous" "that desert that looks hot" "Watch out Graham a POOIIISONOUS snake" and most locations in the game he is too afraid to follow you, or just doesn't care enough to, and gets kidnapped twice. Not to mention his hooty owl voice is beyond annoying to most fans.
  • The Borderlands series of games describes the entire line of Claptrap robots as this—small, boxy, uni-wheeled robots with obnoxiously loud, grating voices and zero subtlety. The yellow Claptrap who's a recurring character for the series is basically treated as an annoyance by almost everyone. The only person who seems to have a kind word for him is Angel, who merely describes Claptrap as a "funny little robot."
  • Fidget, Dust's companion in Dust: An Elysian Tail. She joins him at the beginning because she's supposed to be the guardian of the Cool Sword he gets, and sticks around, helping by providing a magic attack. She's a small, cutesy creature called a nimbat — a kind of cat/squirrel/dragon/whatever thingy — and has a slightly quirky personality. Though they become good friends, she and Dust often get on each other's nerves or tease each other.
  • Parodied and Invoked in Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft with the aptly-named "Annoy-O-Tron". In-universe, this robot is so annoying that it has the "Taunt" ability, which forces other minions to attack it first.
  • As part of its homage to all things '80s, Double Dragon Neon has a hidden secret called Fuzzface, a small flying fuzzy ball that looks goofy and says annoying things in a high-pitched voice. He does at least provide healing items and nets you an achievement/trophy for finding him.

    Webcomics and Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Zuffy from Defenders of the Earth.
  • Pip the mouse in Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds and Tico the...hamster? in Around the World with Willy Fog, though the latter had a bigger role and more developed character than most.
  • The Great Gazoo in The Flintstones.
  • Uni in Dungeons & Dragons.
  • Poof on The Fairly Oddparents.
  • Filmation was for some unholy reason addicted to this trope:
  • Mr Cool, Fonzie's dog in The Fonz and the Happy Days Gang.
  • Nibbler in Futurama. He at first appears to be a small annoying brainless pet with a voracious appetite, but it eventually turns out he's a member of the ancient race of Nibblonians, who (somehow) predate the universe itself by 20 minutes or so. When Nibbler actually speaks, he turns out to have a deep, resonant (if somewhat overdramatic) voice and to be smarter than the rest of the cast put together. He fits the trope because the other characters don't know he's intelligent for quite a while, and most of them find him quite annoying, especially Bender.
  • Godzooky from the series The Godzilla Power Hour. It doesn't help that he's an Expy of Minya either.
  • Oon in Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors.
  • When The Jetsons was brought back in syndication, the major change was the addition of one of these, in the form of Orbity, that little spring-legged unintelligible alien who changed colors depending on his mood. Granted, in a futuristic sitcom, a cute fuzzy alien pet wasn't entirely out of place.
  • Bleep, the alien cotton ball with legs, on Josie and the Pussycats in Outer Space.
  • Many years before Navi came about, The Legend of Zelda's animated series occasionally had the fairy Spryte tag along with Link, and it can be argued that of the two fairies, Spryte is the more annoying. It doesn't help that she's constantly hitting on Link.
  • Mort the mouse lemur in Madagascar and The Penguins of Madagascar.
  • Slimer in The Real Ghostbusters, on the surface, is a textbook case. However, behind the scenes, he's a little bit more complex; in the earlier era of the show helmed by J. Michael Straczynski, the man specifically clarified in his writer's guide for the series to not overuse Slimer so that he doesn't fall under this trope (or at least, isn't hit by it too hard). However, once the network started interfering with the show one of their many controversial decisions was to shoehorn Slimer into every scene, soon embodying this trope's worst aspects.
  • Parodied in Robot Chicken when the creators of Star Trek: The Next Generation decide to create an even worse character than Wesley Crusher to make him look better. Turns out, the more annoying character becomes loved and people still want the writers to kill off Wesley.
    • Robot Chicken also parodied the Filmation examples as Snarf and Orko are in an elevator together thinking about how they can't stand each other. Then Gleek walks in and they both get annoyed by him. Gleek leaves the elevator only to get stuck in line with the most irritating sidekick of all: Andy Richter.
  • Scooby-Doo: Scrappy-Doo, of course!
  • Parodied in South Park with Niblet in "Korn's Groovy Pirate Ghost Mystery."
  • Snarf in Thunder Cats. They later added his even smaller and more annoying nephew, Snarfer. Humorously enough, Snarf's annoying nature is decried by a fan in the DVD extras. The fan in question is Wil Wheaton.
  • The 'Worms' in the MIB animated series Men In Black The Series. They were just an occasional nuisance in the first season, but as the show wore on and seasonal rot set in, they started to tag along with almost every episode, and more or less signaled the death knell of the show.
  • Winslow from CatDog. Notable in that he's actually a lot more on the ball than the usual creature fitting under this trope, and he's usually acting against the protagonists. Most of his annoyance comes from Jerkassery in fact.
  • Mercilessly parodied in Crognard the Barbarian, a show-within-a-show in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2012). The show, a pastiche of 80's Filmation/Hanna-Barbera-styled action-fantasy cartoons, features an annoying ghost-like creature named Spooch who pretty much ticks every box associated with this trope. He is also frequently abused by the title character.


Alternative Title(s): The Momo

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/SmallAnnoyingCreature