"It is as if I have draped myself in a penis!"Simply put, there is something about snakes that inspires our worst fears and greatest dreams. Maybe it's their graceful way of moving, their cool, dispassionate gaze, the smoothness of their scales. Maybe it's the fangs, the way they flick their tongues, or the way they wrap tightly around you in a kind of slinky hug. Maybe it's the fact that they're inherently dangerous, even if they can't actually hurt you. Whatever the reason, in any situation not emphasizing Reptiles Are Abhorrent, snakes are used as a symbol of Evil Is Sexy. Depending on the Mythology you reference, the Lamia or Naga are pretty much the epitome of this. The Lamia is often described as a creature with the body of a snake, and the head, arms, and torso of a human, and are rarely depicted as anything other than incredibly attractive, if not naturally malevolent. The Naga also fits the former's description, but is otherwise depicted as having the entire body of a snake, with the head taking on a human-like face.note Often they are shape-shifters, capable of taking a human or serpentine form. The Western interpretation of Naga is where you get the sexy snakes. See also Feather Boa Constrictor, for snakes worn draped over the shoulders, which often overlaps with this trope.
— Jane, Nobody Scores!
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Anime & Manga
- Orochimaru has a ridiculous amount of snake symbolism, summons snakes to fight for him, and turns into a giant snake made of smaller snakes. He slithered off the Slippery Slope long before the story began, and yet he has a huge fan-following.
- Also his students Kabuto and Anko.
- And in one of the openings to Shippuden, Sasuke is nude and wrapped up in snakes. It's played for both Fanservice and Nightmare Fuel (vis a vis the Fridge Horror that typically results from the realization that those are Orochimaru's snakes)
- Adiane in Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann is a scorpion-woman, but she also has some elements of this, mostly flicking her tongue out like a snake.
- Not a real snake, but Naga the White Serpent from Slayers has a name that invokes this.
- Boa Hancock from One Piece is drop-dead gorgeous. No man (except Luffy) can resist her beauty. She has the power to turn them to stone as a result of this and has a giant snake as her 24/7 personal attendant. Her sisters, on the other hand, subvert this trope... hard.
- Medusa Gorgon, one of the primary antagonists of Soul Eater, definitely plays this up when she's not actively distorting her features for the hell of it or riding around in a 5 year old girl's body as a method of cheating death.
- In Wolf's Rain, Hub talks to a woman wearing revealing lingerie and a snake around her neck while investigating. He seemed less distracted by her sexiness and more distracted by his allergies to snakes.
- In Felarya, Nagas are one of the main races. Disturbingly, they are very humanlike, tend to have a carefree disposition, and eat humans.
- In Rosario + Vampire, Hitomi Ishigami and Kagome Ririko are both snake monsters.
- Cobra and his snake Cubellios from Fairy Tail.
- Bleach has Sun-Sung.
- Mizuki from Kamisama Kiss is a white haired Bishōnen who can turn into a snake.
- Benisato from Ninja Scroll is a seductress who uses snakes to kill her victims. She also has snake tattoos all over her body, which we know because she spends most of her scenes totally nude. And then there's her last ditch snake...
- Echidna from Queen's Blade has a snake motif and her pet snake, Keltan, is her underwear.
- Miia the Lamia in Daily Life with Monster Girl is a well endowed snake-girl who's head over (metaphoric) heels for Darling. Unfortunately for her so are all the other girls.
- Boris Vallejo has, naturally, drawn some very sexy Snake Women, like in this painting. (Warning, very NSFW.)
- The serpent from the Garden of Eden is surprisingly depicted as such sometimes, usually as a sort of half-snake half-woman creature.
- The painting Lilith, by John Collier, depicting a beautiful nude woman wrapped suggestively in a pair of snakes.
- The Delphyne Gorgon from The Incredible Hercules.
- In one flashback in Ironwood a young mage student tried giving a love potion to a cold older student whom he loved. It didn't work quite as expected — she instead had sex with her half-snake female roommate. Because "this body of yours is very phallic" and "size does matter".
- Sensor (Princess Projectra), depending on which retcon is valid, might count as inversion, since she is a snake (or a naga) hiding behind the illusion of a human woman.
- Loki has some historical associations with snakes and since 2014 a Pretty Boy redesign. So who is surprised that covers like this◊ exist?
- The mutie biker Harley from the Dredd fanfic Highway Don't Care is described as curvaceous and attractive — despite her scales, slit-pupilled eyes and unhinging jaw. Her partner, Indian, has a helpless crush on her. She doesn't like being described as a snake, threatening to cold-cock anyone who describes her as such.
- In the Discworld fics of A.A. Pessimal, in this case Why And Were, Johanna Smith-Rhodes is seen handling a pet python with nonchalance and looking as if, in different clothing, she could be seen moonlighting as an exotic dancer rather than a zoologist.note She also wrangles poisonous snakes in the course of a day's work, making post boxes safe again for the city.
- There's an entire fetish related to Disney's Kaa(or some expy thereof) hypnotizing and/or coiling people (Mowgli, the author/artist's favorite fictional character, or even the reader her/himself) and either eating them, keeping them as pets/slaves or... whatever.
Films — Live-Action
- The Lair of the White Worm. The sexy Big Bad Lady Marsh (Amanda Donohoe) acts in a snakelike manner (including dancing and swaying to music), can change into a partially snake-like form and has a giant snake as her deity.
- Thulsa Doom, the Big Bad from the Conan the Barbarian (1982) movie. He turns into a snake during the orgy, one assumes for some fun.
- In the film of Cole Porter's Musical Can-Can, in the "Adam and Eve" ballet, the Snake in the Garden of Eden is played as a very sexy woman.
- Salma Hayek's snake dance in From Dusk Till Dawn. When she goes monster, it resembles a snake form, even initially having a cobra head.
- Zhora in Blade Runner is working as an exotic dancer using a robot snake as a prop.
- Medusa from Clash of the Titans remake is half-woman, half-snake, all sexy.
- Who can forget Viper from Kung Fu Panda? And voiced by Lucy Liu no less!
- Green Snake is about two shapeshifting snakes who, in human form, look like beautiful maidens. One of them is played by Maggie Cheung.
- The Nollywood "Snake Girl" saga. The actress plays a cobra/human shapeshifter, and she is sexy, scary and verrrry snakish (even without any SFX) at the same time.
- Kaa is a female in The Jungle Book (2016) and is voiced by Scarlett Johansson, sounding so seductive and deadly at the same time. She's also much less comical than her 1967 Sterling Holloway counterpart.
- In the Fritz Lang movie The Indian Tomb (1959) a woman is being sacrificed to the snake goddess, so she throws off her robe to reveal a Theiss Titillation Theory bikini and dances to mesmerize the cobra which is her means of execution. It works until she stumbles and the cobra rears to strike, but fortunately a watching Indian prince had been quite mesmerized by her performance as well, and saves her life.
- In the Chronicles of Narnia novel The Silver Chair, the Emerald Witch transforms into a poisonous serpent. After she tried to corrupt the protagonists into shunning Aslan...
- In Making Money Moist thinks that his girlfriend can sashay in a way that could put snakes to shame.
- Salmissra, Queen of the Snake People in The Belgariad.
- Crowley. Oh my God, Crowley.
- A variation in the Xanth novels is the Python of Mount Parnassus, an immense snake capable of swallowing live humans whole (with ease), who also has the ability to control any woman through the power of sexiness... which makes no sense, but hey, it's Xanth.
- Also from Piers Anthony, one minor character in the Incarnations of Immortality series is a dancer named Pythia, whose act involves dancing suggestively with a snake before letting it swallow her whole (she makes sure to use an ointment that'll keep her from being digested or suffocated).
- A Merritt's novel The Face in the Abyss has Ananda the Snake Mother, a beautiful silver-haired naga with pearly, heart-shaped scales.
- In Keats' Lamia poem, Lamia is a beautiful snake, being a "rainbow" of lovely colors. When she turns into a woman, she becomes The Vamp.
- Most obviously, explicitly Freudian example ever: "Here Comes the Snake" by Cherry Poppin' Daddies.
Here comes the snake and he circles your leg.
He's come to play and make your body parts shake.
- Monster Magnet has a song called Snake Dance on one of their earlier albums, Spine of God.
- The Lamia from The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway by Genesis.
- The music video "Engel" by Rammstein has a dancer who uses a snake as a prop.
- One of the strippers in the Music Video for "How Do U Want It?" by Tupac Shakur is seen with a python.
Myths & Religion
- The Snake in the Chinese zodiac is associated with sexuality, to the point where calling a woman "a snake" in China is a compliment. "Madame White Snake" is also one of the best known folk tales in China, a fantasy tale revolving around a young scholar who marries an incredibly beautiful woman named "Madame White", only to find out that she and her maidservant are snakes in human form. See the other wiki article here for more details.
- Early versions of the tale of Melusine revealed her to be a Naga. Later versions changed this to a mermaid.
- In Indian mythologies, the Naga (the snake people) were described as extremely beautiful, both male and female, in their human forms.
- Jake "The Snake" Robers explained this to wrestling fans in 1988, while accompanied by his then wife, Cheryl.
- In Warhammer and Warhammer 40,000 had Slaanesh, Chaos God of Lust and Perversion, that was heavily associated with serpents with one of its many names being "the Great Serpent". At least two of its followers: Dechala the Denied One in Warhammer Fantasy and the Daemon Primarch Fulgrim in 40K were converted into snake-like Greater Daemons.
- Silessa◊ in Ravenloft was quite literally this trope being an asp familiar that was magically turned into a busty blonde elven maiden that wears strategically placed snake jewelry and worked as exotic dancer for the Carnival. She still possesses many snake-like traits such as shedding her skin, spitting poison and being able to communicate with snakes.
- Marilith in Dungeons & Dragons combine this Trope with Evil Is Sexy, being tall demons with long, snaky tails and six-armed female upper bodies. One Planescape short story told in comic book form features a cambion trying to win the love of one of them, only to get his wish in the worst way possible.
- The Breath of Fire series features a recurring playable character named Deis (Bleu in the localization). She is an ageless, godlike Naga creature — and really stacked, to boot.
- Naga Sirens in Warcraft III: Four-armed snake-women whose quotes show them as the "seducing sailors off boats" type.
- Cloud of Darkness from Dissidia: Final Fantasy. Although they are called tentacles, they have a clear snake-like appearance and even have eyes and mouths resembling a snakes. The tentacles just add to CoD's allure. Other (and older) examples would Marilith, the multi-armed Fiend of Fire from the first game, and the Lamia Queen from II.
- Medusa, the Big Bad of Kid Icarus, as seen in◊ Uprising. It's heavily implied that this was Medusa's original form before Palutena, Goddess of Light cursed her for tormenting humans, as seen when Medusa dies in the original game. Overlaps with Hot Goddess, as Medusa was the Goddess of Darkness.
- One of the female costume options in Rock Band 2 is a top that consists of a large snake that covers the character's breasts and nothing else.
- XCOM 2 has the Viper, a quite visibly female only species of humanoid alien cobras who are surprisingly seductive, given that their role in the game is killing your agents with blasts of plasma rifle fire or by crushing them in their coils. They've made a huge positive impact on the fandom, to the point they're often cited (if jokingly) as one of the reasons for fans Rooting for the Empire.
- Kwaii from Drowtales.
- Jane Doe from Nobody Scores! understands this trope.
- Kin from Goblins falls into this. She's a yuan-ti, so she looks human from the waist up, but has a snake tail. In her early appearances, she's essentially wearing a bikini top, which is revealed to be a case of Go-Go Enslavement, and she quickly changes into something more modest when the opportunity arises.
- As seen in the trope image, Belly Dancers use snakes as props during their shows. Though they should be careful at that, or else the trope would be quite squicktastically subverted. What do you think happens to somebody who gets swung around too much? Exactly, they get sick.
- The undulating motion of a snake itself can be rather sexy—think of all those dances where women basically do the same thing (but standing).
- Snake references, like "the one-eyed trouser snake," are often used as penis euphemisms. Sir Mix-a-Lot referenced this in his famous song "Baby Got Back" (as did Nicki Minaj in "Anaconda," a remix of "Baby Got Back"): My anaconda don't want none unless you got buns, hun!
- For many, seeing someone draped or wrapped in the coils of a snake is very provocative.
- Vorarephilia is a paraphilia where pleasure is derived from the concept of being swallowed whole. Naturally, thanks to snakes' real-life ability to swallow large creatures, they appear in a lot of vorarephilic art and stories (as do Snake People).
- Averted by Bill Engvall in his album Here's Your Sign. He's scared to death of snakes and when one girlfriend tried to invoke this (with a boa constrictor named "Fluffy", he suddenly sobered up and left her house.
Girlfriend *breathy*: No. Wait, Bill... Fluffy can wrap around us while we make love.Bill *mockingly breathy*: No he can't... cause I'll kill him.