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Cuteness Proximity / Live-Action TV

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  • On the Animal Planet Heroes programs, the officers rescuing animals will often baby talk them.
  • On Bones, Dr. Temperance Brennan suffers from a modified version of this. Although initially a bit uncomfortable interacting with an abandoned baby she and Booth found during a case, she is soon cooing and playing with it — in a very Bones fashion. In one memorable bit that she repeats in later interactions with babies in the series, she wiggles her fingers in the baby's face (to its delight) while chanting "Dancing phalanges! Dancing phalanges!"
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine, "Terry's Kitties": Sergeant Terry Jeffords is sent a box with a kitten as an annual prank by his former colleagues. (He was frustrated on his first case and yelled during an arrest that a cat was an accomplice.) When Detective Jake Peralta suggests he confronts them about this bullying, he returns with two more kittens. Jake can't resist their adorableness. He wants Terry to put the first one in a mug and pretend to take a sip, he cuddles with them, blows them kisses and gives them cool Die Hard names. "Cat squad, assemble!" However, Jake is this goofy all the time. Terry is usually pretty laid-back, but he's not moved by their cuteness at all — he's in a bad mood the whole episode and calls the kitties dicks, dumb, and other mean stuff.
    Terry: I'm gonna go put an ad online so I can find someone to adopt this evil, little turd. [...] You better look cute in this picture, or no one's gonna want you. Do something with your damn paws!
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • In the episode "All the Way", Willow's rant about witch stereotypes is cut short when she notices the utterly adorable 4-year-old in a witch costume. She pretty much melts.
    • Also noted in "Fear Itself" with Gachnar the fear demon. A horrendous demon of evil who is 6 inches tall.
      Xander: Who's a little fear demon? Come on! Who's a little fear demon?
      Giles: Please don't taunt the fear demon.
      Xander: Why? Can it hurt me?
      Giles: No, it's just tacky.
  • Corporate: When Lloyd starts bringing his dog Edie to the office his perpetually depressed colleagues suddenly perk up and go completely gaga over her. Well, everyone except cynical "single cat mom" Jake.
  • Charmed:
    • Phoebe becomes an incoherent babbling pile of cooing when Wyatt is first born — to the point where she wants time off work just so she can fawn over the baby even more.
    • Parodied one year later when Phoebe does the same with her second nephew Chris because she's under a spell that makes her ridiculously cheery. Oh and Chris is from the future, so that's a twenty-something man she's cooing over.
  • Cheers:
    • Played with one instance, when Carla's just given birth to twins. The guys all go to the hospital to see them, and start cooing at them through the screen. Then Carla shows them her kids, sitting in nearby baskets. The guys promptly go right back to the other babies anyway.
    • Frasier momentarily does this with a trained attack dog named "Satan", until he finds out it's an attack dog.
    • When Lilith gives birth to Frederick, Frasier thinks he's made an expression. Lilith points out that as a new born, Frederick lacks the ability to make expressions. What they're seeing is just him making gas. So...
      Frasier & Lilith: Aww, his first gas!
  • The Colbert Report: Stephen Colbert normally hates and fears bears The Godless Killing Machines, but pictures of cute little bear cubs invariably send him into hopeless Baby Talk. An attempt to de-cuteinize one cub failed when putting the cub's face on bin Laden's body just made terrorism adorable.
  • Conan O'Brien had a wildlife expert on as a guest and completely lost it when he brought out the coyote puppy. As the animal guy was trying to explain they're "less friendly than dogs and wolves" Conan was rubbing his cheek on it. Then it licked him. Then he licked it back. The bear cub did not quite elicit the same reaction, as it was trying to claw him to death...
  • Dark•Matter: When an accident with the Blink Drive sends the Raza back in time, Two meets a dog and spends several minutes gushing over the animal. She then suggests they get a dog "to improve crew morale".
  • Doctor Who:
    • The Doctor does this sometimes with K-9.
    • In "The Curse of Fenric", Ace's mum when she was still a baby.
    • "Fear Her": Rose gets this way with a cat she encounters. The Doctor initially assumes she's talking about him, and visibly sours up when he realizes she isn't.
    • "Gridlock" has the Doctor get this way with some kittens.note 
    • Eleven gets this way with flying alien fish, to the point of talking Baby Talk to them.
    • The Doctor also exploits this trope. In "Closing Time", he gets Craig to bring his baby son with them when they investigate the alien-menace-of-the-week. His reasoning is that people are friendlier to someone with a baby, which is the same reason he travels with non-Time Lords.
      Craig: So I'm your baby?
      The Doctor: You're my baby!
    • It happens to the Doctor again in "Dinosaurs on a Spaceship"... with a triceratops.
    • In a non-Doctor example, when the TARDIS shrinks to the size of a milk carton at the start of "Flatline", Clara spends a good couple moments helplessly giggling and declaring how adorable she is. The Doctor is a lot less amused, considering he's stuck inside (and also in his Twelfth incarnation).
      • Even better, after Clara begins fawning over the tiny TARDIS, something inside the console room can be seen letting off steam. Given that the TARDIS is a Living Ship, this can be interpreted as blushing.
  • The straight-laced businessmen on The Fast Show, who get soppy over calendars with cute puppies on them and excited when they're allowed into the cockpit of a plane.
  • Subverted and lampshaded by Roz in Frasier when Frasier attempts to get her to adopt a puppy.
    Roz: [cooing] Oh, he's adorable! Oh, come here, little fella! Oh. Aren't you the cutest little thing? Oh, yeah. Give me a kiss. Give me a kiss. Oh! I love you too. [shoves the puppy back to Frasier, harshly] There. Happy now?
    Frasier: [aghast] Roz, how can you just toss him aside after such a tender display of affection?
    Roz: I do it with men, too.
  • Lampshaded quite neatly on Friends when Joey gets a dog. When Rachel sees the dog, she dissolves into Baby Talk, par for the course as far as this trope goes. She then realizes it, and says to the dog, still in Baby Talk mode, "I really have to stop talking like this before my board meeting, yes I do! Yes I do!"
  • In the first season of Fuller House, Becky goes into baby talk mode whenever she holds baby Tommy in her arms.
  • Game of Thrones: How Ser Pounce saved everyone from a very awkward conversation.
  • The gruff and withdrawn Nathan Wuornos from Haven pretty much turns into another person around babies. The sudden change unnerves his partner, Audrey.
    Beattie: [The boat] was reported stolen a week ago from the Camden Harbor.
    Nathan (holding the baby): Maybe the lobster gear was stolen, too. (to Benny, in baby voice) Can you ask around? Can you, Benny? Can you ask around?
    Audrey: Okay, can you give her her baby back and turn into a cop again?
  • How I Met Your Mother:
    • One episode had Lily debating with Ted and Robin whether or not she and Marshall should start having kids. Her feelings are very mixed until she finds a baby's sock left at her apartment by a neighbour and starts gushing over it, unable to say anything but "sock!" Robin and Ted soon succumb to the cuteness too, but for Barney, it brings up some of his buried emotional issues (his Disappeared Dad ones most likely,) so he goes to sing karaoke while crying the whole time.
    • Worse yet, the tea cup pig wrapped in a blanket. Just watch. Great music at the end there.
  • Kamen Rider Build: In The Movie, the title character has to go on the lam after the Big Bad uses a Hate Plague to turn the entire city against him. While hiding out in an alley, he sees a couple of dogs and starts cooing over the "little angels" while trying to snap their picture with his smartphone. And then he looks up and sees several people looking in confusion at the sight of a costumed superhero acting like a smitten teenage girl.
    Build: ...Damn, I'm dumb.
  • Legends of Tomorrow: Captain Cold of all people caused this reaction in Hawkgirl and White Canary. Although he was a baby at the time.
    Captain Cold: I know I make a gorgeous baby but let me warn you, you have your hands full.
  • M*A*S*H: Charles Winchester reacts this way to the half-Korean, half-American Doorstop Baby that gets temporarily taken into the camp while they searched for a proper home for her. And this was Charles. To be fair, the rest of the camp did, too.
  • Dr. Talbot on Mercy reacts this way to a kitten she finds under a car. Her accent makes it all the more hilarious.
    Gillian: Ooooh look, it's a poor little stray urchin!
  • In Monty Python's Flying Circus, a woman affected by this trope, and babbling appropriately, makes the mistake of removing the baby's pacifier. Everyone in the room is sucked into the vortex.
  • Mystery Science Theater 3000:
    • In the episode Colossus Against the Headhunters, this is the reason for Nummy Muffin CoocolButter's existence. Dr. F's idea is that everyone who comes in contact with Nummy will be so overcome by his cuteness that Dr. F will be able to take over the world. This works on Mike, although the 'bots are only annoyed by Nummy and his constant shedding. But when Mike notices that Frank and Nummy miss each other, he sends Nummy back to Deep 13, and Dr. F falls into his own trap.
    • A minor Running Gag has the guys react to any dog or cat appearing in the movie they're watching by cooing "Puppy!" or "Kitty!" and trying to get its attention. Even if it's supposed to be the monster of the film.
    • At the end of Werewolf, Pearl attempts to create her own werewolf, only for Bobo to turn up with an adorable dog because it's apparently quite hard to buy a wolf after midnight. While Pearl and Brain Guy are unaffected, Bobo ends up cuddling and baby-talking to it.
  • Odd Squad:
    • Downplayed in the case of Xavier and Xena in "Saving Agent Orson". Though they still retain their serious composures, they have to resist giving in to the cuteness of the titular agent.
    • In "Raising the Bar", shortly after shrinking a giant, fast-moving snail with the Snail-inator, Opal and Orla take a brief moment to fawn over how adorable it is.
    • While on their way to Mr. Sides' restaurant in "Odd Squad in the Shadows", Opal, Orla and Oswald look through the rest of the latter's workbooks only to find pictures of kittens inside, and immediately gush over how cute they are.
    • In "Sample of New York", Opal's vulnerability to cute babies is what spurs her to ask 50 of them working as Odd Squad agents in the New York City precinct what their favorite food is: mushed peas. Naturally, when they present bowls of it to the other, much-older agents, they reject it and go back to protesting for better food.
    • In the Season 3 finale "End of the Road", Orana and Oliver point out that Australia has kangaroos, causing Omar, Oswald, Orla and the Big O to give a unisonant "Awww..." before Opal gets them back on track.
  • On Parks and Recreation everyone in Pawnee, including (make that especially) the ultra-manly Ron Swanson, is enamoured of Lil Sebastian, a miniature horse considered a local celebrity. The only one in the cast who isn't is Ben, who just sees a small horse who doesn't do anything (to be fair, Ben is from out of town). When Sebastian dies, his funeral becomes a major event, and even Ron is moved to tears for, he claims, only the second time in his entire life.
  • Person of Interest:
  • Red Dwarf: Weaponised by the baby Polymorphs in "Cans of Worms", who shapeshift into adorable animals (like a hedgehog in a shopping trolley and a Cute Kitten) to convince other people to not flush them out to space or otherwise kill them.
  • When Avril Lavigne appeared on Australian talk show Rove Live to promote her then-new album Let Go, she was quite subdued for most of the interview... until Rove brought out a koala. To the point that, once the koala show up, she barely paid attention to anything Rove said.
  • Scrubs:
    • Kelso laughs at Elliot's attempts to be unfeminine by saying that as soon as the "stork comes calling" she'll be gushing "look at the baby!" like all of the other female doctors in OB/GYN and Pediatrics. She denies it, but when she actually sees the baby...
    • The same thing happens in a later episode when she and her friend Melody are shrieking with joy (to such a degree that in J.D.'s fantasy they are actually blowing people away). Showing them a picture of Turk's daughter Izzy immediately turns their screams into "Aww"s.
    • In one Imagine Spot, J.D uses this to cure heart failure by tipping a box of kittens over a flatlining patient.
  • Arrogant, narcissistic painter Olivier in Six Feet Under turns to pudding when he meets Brenda's baby.
  • Soap:
    • It's not exactly sure how to spell the string of gibberish that Burt Campbell spouted off whenever he was faced with his granddaughter Wendy. The letter "L" would definitely be used heavily, though.
    • Burt's son Chuck&Bob (Chuck was a ventriloquist), who was Wendy's step-uncle, would stick Bob's head up close to hers and go "WenyWenyWenyWenyWeny! WenyWenyWenyWenyWeny!" while shaking his head back and forth. Chuck is usually slightly embarrassed by Bob's behavior.
  • Daisy does this a lot with her dog Colin in Spaced. Downstairs neighbour Brian attempts to talk to the dog in a normal and reasonable tone (after inadvertently sitting on him) but this proves unsatisfying to Daisy, who forces him to adopt a cutesy and high-pitched voice when talking to the dog for no readily explainable reason.
    • Both Brian and Marsha initially appear to have a more mature and responsible attitude toward the dog, but they pretty quickly break down into dressing him in an Edwardian ruff and making him dance. Also, Colin's Cuteness Proximity actually becomes a plot point, when it becomes an issue of conflict between Daisy ('How can you not like him? He's so cute.') and Tim ('That's how it starts, with 'oohs' and 'awwws', but soon there'll be barking and... biting...'). Due to Tim's childhood caniphobia (which is not the fear of bamboo), he is immune to Colin's head-cocking adorableness... until he bonds with the dog rescuing him from freelance animal vivisectionists and is nobbled by the dog as much as anyone else. He also rescues a bunch of kittens in the same episode, because how could he not?
  • Star Trek:
    • Star Trek: The Original Series:
    • Star Trek: The Next Generation:
      • Speaking of cats, Data adores his pet cat Spot, despite being an "emotionless" android. Even he is reduced to inane speech in the presence of his cat.
        Data: He will need to be fed once a day. He prefers feline supplement number 25.
        Worf: I understand.
        Data: And he will require water, and you must provide him with a sandbox, and you must talk to him. Tell him he is a pretty cat and a good cat.
        Worf: I will feed it.
      • It seems to be sort of an unspoken rule in Star Trek: If you're supposedly emotionless, you have to love small furry creatures, especially if they're cats.
    • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine:
      • In one episode, O'Brien is bringing his baby son Kirayoshi to work because if he sets the child down, he'll start wailing. At the end, the baby grows out of this, falling asleep in his carrier. Sisko tells O'Brien to take a few days off, then reminds every female officer in Ops (including Dax and Kira) that they have jobs to do. Not even Worf can resist the kid for long.
      • Another subtle example earlier (the Season 3 episode "The Abandoned") when a baby Jem'Hadar is found and brought to the infirmary. When Sisko comes in he starts holding the child, stands with a slightly absent smile on his face and has to ask Jadzia to repeat what she's saying about orphanages and researching the child's unknown species. Then he subtly gets overcome with parenting nostalgia, and when he gets to his quarters, he asks his 16-year-old son Jake for a hug. (This is in contrast to TNG's Picard, who is reserved and articulate, and though he doesn't hate children, he's uncomfortable around them.)
    • Star Trek: Voyager:
      • In "The Q and the Grey", Q tries to seduce Captain Janeway by materializing a cute Irish Setter puppy in her quarters (she left a dog back on Earth). Janeway gives it her Gooey Look, but quickly snaps out of it.
        Janeway: It's not going to work, Q.
        Q: [materializing beside her] How can you resist that face? [gives his best Puppy-Dog Eyes]
      • Female Qs, however, are not impressed with this trope.
        Ms. Q: What are you doing with that dog? [Q and Janeway look at the puppy] I'm not talking about the puppy!
      • Likewise invoked in "Child's Play" when the Doctor shows Janeway the Borg baby. Janeway reacts predictably... until she realizes that the Doctor is trying to manipulate her into not deploying the Borg-killing virus he's been ordered to work on. She then abruptly hands the baby back and orders him to get on with the job.
      • In "Dark Frontier", Tuvok tells the Captain that a member of the crew wishes to speak to her. Janeway wants to foist the task off on her Number One until little Naomi Wildman sticks her head out from behind Tuvok. Cue Gooey Look from Janeway.
  • Supernatural: Dean's theory why his brother is so much better in convincing people of the crazy, spooky ghost hunting stuff is based on comparison of Sam to a big puppy. (well, at least in the first few seasons.) Thus reducing the unwitting civilians not necessarily to a melting mass of Baby Talk but getting them to listen to them. Which is definitely more helpful.
  • Super Sentai:
    • Haruka of Hikari Sentai Maskman is occasionally seen fawning over things like dolls because of not being able to have them growing up.
    • Juri of Chouriki Sentai Ohranger can be really badass, but also just as equally be distracted by cute things. To the point were she almost let a bomb into the base because someone gave her a cute doll!
    • Mio from Ressha Sentai ToQger is generally a no-nonsense type of girl, but her doll Mikey helps her be a bit more lighthearted.
    • Zyuden Sentai Kyoryuger: Debo Kyawain, the Monster of the Week from Episode 19, can charm its enemies by transforming into a cutesy baby-like form. Amusingly enough, the Red Ranger Daigo is the only member of the team not fooled by its charms, and just shoots at it.
      Daigo: You know I actually saw you switch over, right?
      Kyawain: Oh no, someone with common sense!
  • Ultra Series:
    • Ayano of Ultraman Cosmos reacts with giddiness upon seeing Baby Zaranga after its Mother gives birth to it in the Ocean.
    • Konomi of Ultraman Mebius reacts with girly fawning upon seeing Lim Eleking for the 1st time ever whereas everyone else in GUYS is scared out of their minds considering Eleking is a Kaiju-sized Electric Eel.
  • Even characters on Veronica Mars periodically degenerate into a mushpile after they get to know the "ferocious pitbull" called Backup.
  • Weaponized in an episode of The West Wing; Leo is talking to the President's personal physician, who is showing off photos of his wife and days-old baby when his assistant Margaret comes up and starts complaining about him scheduling a meeting when he should have left it to her. Without missing a beat, Leo hands her the photo with "Here. It's a photo of a new mother and her baby." Margaret instantly melts into cooing.
    Margaret: Did you tell the Counsel's office that they would be in on the 10 o'clock?
    Leo: I may have.
    Margaret: [miffed] That's really something that you want to tell me.
    Leo: [showing photograph] Here, it's a baby and a new mother. Look at that for a minute.
    Margaret: [reacts in traditional manner]
  • The performers on Whose Line Is It Anyway? may kid around a lot, but they are, to this day, 100% consummate professionals. And then Lassie shows up as the subject of a Duet, and Brad and Wayne (and especially Ryan in the back) just devolve into puddles of joy.