Laughter, of course, is one of the best known and most treasured ways that human beings express happiness. In addition to laughing when they find something funny, people laugh when they find something joyous, or heartwarming, or even stimulating. In general, a person enjoys hearing another person laugh. Unless, of course, that other person has a laugh that, rather than sounding joyous, sounds painful or cringe-inducingly awful.
The Annoying Laugh usually comes in several specific flavors (the Asthma Attack bellow, the high Hyena-like cackle, the Snort-Snort-Snort, the Machine Gun Chuckle, and the Donkey-like Bray being the most common). In some cases, the Annoying Laugh is used in place of actually fleshing out a character, since the type of annoying laugh can lead the audience to assuming the character basically is just as annoying as his or her laugh happens to be. In some cases, a character will have an Annoying Laugh because the script calls for it, but sometimes its because the actor playing the role laughs like that for real.
The supertrope of the Noblewoman's Laugh. Almost always Played for Laughs. Compare Un-Evil Laugh. Sometimes part of an Overly Long Gag. The Annoying Laugh is very common in animation and sitcoms. Subtrope of Signature Laugh.
In-Universe or Word of God-backed Intended Audience Reaction examples only:
- In Code Geass: Tales of an Alternate Shogunate, Matthew Perry has a laugh that Lelouch compares to the buzzing of a mosquito.
- Guruma from Fist of the North Star Zero: The Legend Of Kenshiro, it goes like "Dee Hee, Dee Hee, Dee Hee!".
- Waji gets Guu to laugh in Haré+Guu, needless to say Guu's laugh is not as much annoying as it is blood-curdingly creepy!.
- In My Teen Romantic Comedy SNAFU, Yukino and Yui find Hikigaya's laugh unpleasant.
- The Italian dub of One Piece is basically one big Lampshade Hanging of how the unusual different kinds of laughter (case in point: Hogback), while somewhat acceptable in a manga, actually end up working awfully when animated. On the other hand, there are exceptions such as Brook's Italian VA, who did a perfect job at that.
- Naga the Serpent from Slayers, whose epic Noblewoman's Laugh can be classified as a deadly weapon in 37 states. It also sends old women scrambling to the nearest shrine, begging whichever deity that happens to be nearby to "please make it stop".
- Kodachi in Ranma ½. Her shrill, maniacal cackle that is one of her trademarks. It's not a coincidence that Kodachi shares Naga's voice actress. Mocked often in Ranma ½: The Abridged Chronicles.
- Esmeraude from Sailor Moon. It is so painful, the characters actually cover their ears on hearing it.
- In Sgt. Frog, the other characters find Kululu's "Ku-ku-ku!" laugh annoying. Every time he laughs, the others know he's causing mischief.
- Umineko: When They Cry:
- In Origin Story, Alex Harris's laugh is described as a combination of a howl and a honk. One character described her laugh as sounding "for all the world like a seal being tortured."
- In The Fifth House before Amelia fell in love with Sirius, she believed that his laugh sounded like a cross between a hyena and a constipated bear.
- Sailor Moon Abridged: Raye. "Where did you fly off to Darien? The moon? HA. HA. GET IT? I MADE A FUNNY KIDS."
- The Lion King (1994) has a Terrible Trio of hyenas who tend to laugh this way. Specially Ed, who downright only "speaks" by laughing.
- Madagascar: Escape from Africa has Melman saying that one of the things he loves about Gloria is that she has a beautiful laugh. When she does laugh later on... it's mainly high giggling and snorting, but Melman still loves the laugh. Alex and Marty don't comment on it much other than Marty declaring "Love has no boundaries!"
- Princess Ting-Ting in Mulan II has a snorting laugh which she hates, so she does her level best to avoid laughing for most of the film. However when she finally does crack up and laugh, Ling (her love interest) finds it cute.
- The Chief Blue Meanie's laugh from Yellow Submarine, it goes something like "Eeee heee eee heee heee heee!".
- Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, as played by Tom Hulce in the film version of Amadeus, had a hyena-like cackle.
- 88 Keys from Dick Tracy, which sounds like a braying donkey. This was added to the film version, the comic strip character didn't have this trait, and wasn't much of the laughing type in the first place.
- Dwight Frye's Renfield's laugh in the original English film version of Dracula, which was copied by Arte Johnson when he played the role in the spoof Love at First Bite. Peter Mac Nicol likewise imitates the laugh when he plays Renfield in Dracula: Dead and Loving It.
- In Fight Club, Tyler tells the Narrator when they first meet: "You have a sick desperation in your laugh."
- '30s and '40s movie comedian Hugh Herbert had a constant "Hoo-hoo!" laugh as part of his onscreen schtick. This was later borrowed by Daffy Duck.
- One of the murder victims in Hot Fuzz had one. In a subversion of convoluted murder mystery plots, it turns out that this mundane annoyance was actually the reason that she was killed.
- The Hunger Games: Caesar Flickerman constantly lets out this irritatingly jubilant guffaw in the films.
- Mary Poppins has a whole song about annoying laughs. With some bad jokes thrown in for good measure!
- A date gets interrupted in Muriel's Wedding by two men who seem to think Muriel is hurt and choking.
- Star Wars:
- Salacious B. Crumb, the Kowakian monkey-lizard from Return of the Jedi, has one of the most obnoxious laughs of all time. Nobody complained about him dying in the explosion of the sail barge.
- It gets Lampshaded in the canon comics series, when Darth Vader meets with Jabba the Hutt.
Vader: If you value that creature's life, you should tell it to never again do that in my presence.
- Gracie from Miss Congeniality, when laughing at herself, tends to add some snorts.
- Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels have a few:
- Carcer from Night Watch. Used as one of quite a few indicators that the man is a complete psychopath.
- Mr. Cletes from Soul Music. Hat. Hat. Hat.
- A minor variant (and only mentioned perhaps twice) is Strappi's laugh from Monstrous Regiment, which is described as "a harsh gargling at the back of the throat."
- Harry Potter :
- Honor Harrington is convinced she has one of these, and goes out of her way to avoid showing any sign of having a sense of humour in response. She apparently inherited it from her mother, who has a similar opinion of her own.
- Mariel of Redwall introduces the Honourable Rosemary, whose laugh is loud and long enough to deafen everyone in hearing range. It's also said to be able to curdle cream from thirty paces away.
- ALF. Alf is Playing Cyrano, but finds the boy isn't interested in the girl after finding she has an annoying laugh.
Alf: So you're not going to take her out to the movies any more?
Boy: I will... just not to anything funny.
- Jordan from The Bernie Mac Show has his trademark crackle.
- Vince Masuka from Dexter does a Beavis and Butthead style laugh whenever he or someone else makes a double entendre.
- Doctor Who:
- "Aliens of London": In the last scene, when the Slitheen reveal themselves, Jacrassa Fel-Fotch Passameer-Day Slitheen, their leader, posing as acting Prime Minister Joseph Green, starts laughing as his comrade removes his human disguise. The laughter continues all through the scene, and is decidedly not evil-sounding, merely irritating.
- In "Robot of Sherwood", Robin Hood's boisterous laughter really gets on the Doctor's nerves.
Robin Hood: Robin Hood laughs in the face of all! Ha-ha-ha!
The Doctor: And do people ever punch you in the face when you do that?
Robin Hood: Not as yet, no.
The Doctor: Lucky I'm here, then, isn't it?
- Dog with a Blog: Ellen laughs like a donkey.
- Drake & Josh: One episode had Drake break up with a girl because of her laugh. This causes problems for him when it turns out she was the daughter of his nemesis teacher.
- Another snorter is Elvira, Mistress of the Dark.
- Ever Decreasing Circles, written by Good Life creators John Esmonde and Bob Larbey, followed in Jerry Ledbetter's wake with Howard Hughes (Stanley Lebor) and his almost improbably high-pitched giggle.
- One of the guests on Malcolm McDowell's Fantasy Island had a fantasy about hooking up with his childhood crush, who he remembers as having a wonderful laugh. Maybe it was selective memory, but when his fantasy comes true it turns out she has a kind of glass-breaking rattle.
- Arthur Atkinson of The Fast Show' has an annoying voice and "personality" at the best of times, but his laugh could kill small animals.
- Fawlty Towers: Sibyl Fawlty. A combination of the Machine-Gun Chuckle with a Donkey Bray finish. According to her husband, it sounds like "somebody machine-gunning a seal".
- One of Janice's annoying quirks is her laugh.
- Chandler's work laugh is very annoying and he explains it was invented for survival reasons. He warns Monica she will need to invent one as well to survive his work colleagues. She does.
- In Full House episode "The Producer", Danny quits Wake Up San Francisco out of jealousy towards Becky's promotion to Producer, and the replacement she hires, Phil Blankman, has an extremely irritating laugh, for which the entire family agrees, even Becky herself.
- Jerry Ledbetter (Paul Eddington) on The Good Life usually deployed a rather grating snicker.
- The Good Place: All of the demons have annoying laughs. They also find annoying things funny, find the act of annoying people funny, and of course will brutally torture anyone they get their hands on. They combine Evil Is Petty with dead-serious eternal damnation.
- Hercules: The Legendary Journeys has the character Strife and, later, his twin brother Deimos, who are both infamous among the other characters for their hyena-like laugh:
Hercules: Deimos... I'd know that laugh anywhere!
Hercules: That was not a compliment!
- On an episode of House when Cuddy is trying to get pregnant, House brings one of the sperm donors she's considering in for an interview. The man had a very annoying laugh which came out when he was nervous. This was one of House's arguments for why he shouldn't be considered as the father.
- Desi Arnaz as Ricky Ricardo in I Love Lucy. His laugh sounded phoney, and kind of forced, but it wasn't. That was Arnaz's real laugh.
- Now disgraced TV personality Stuart Hall was famous for his laugh on The '70s crazy game show It's A Knockout. A sort of choked braying hysteria that was unmistakeable. When the pan-European contest was hosted in Britain, other European commentators doing voice-overs for their own domestic audiences would stop and allow a whole continent to experience the Hall laugh.
- Live Forever As You Are Now with Alan Resnick: Teddy, being a digital character, has a robotic, stilted, "HA. HA. HA." laugh that makes even Alan seem uncomfortable.
- Frank Burns from M*A*S*H has an annoying little giggle that he likes to use whenever he thinks he's gotten the one-up on somebody or when he's feeling smug. It does little to help with his already abrasive personality.
- Mystery Science Theater 3000: Phantom of Krankor from the experiment Prince of Space. While his drawn-out "Heeeeeeeh heeeeeeeeeh heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeh" never draws any comment from characters in the original movie, it earns him much derision from the SOL crew.
- Melanie Pearson from Neighbours, whose laugh has been compared to "a seal having a hernia", not helped by her tendency to overreact to Henry's lame quips.
- Boycie from Only Fools and Horses has the machine gun rattle down to a fine art.
- Our Miss Brooks:
- Mrs. Davis' sister Angela has a high pitched laugh, like a schoolgirl. The annoyance comes from the fact that she's a short, middle-aged woman. It's especially notable in the episode "Angela's Wedding".
- Walter Denton has a high, discordant laugh to go along with his squeaky teenage voice. In "Mr. Leblanc Needs $50" his girlfriend Harriet Conklin walks up to him while he's laughing:
Harriet: How long have you been standing there, cackling to yourself?
- Seinfeld: One episode has Jerry dating a woman with an annoying laugh, and he can't bear to tell her. It's compared to "Elmer Fudd sitting on a juicer."
- Sonny with a Chance has a blogger named Sharona, who has a very irritating, high-pitched laugh.
- Kitty from That '70s Show. Unlike a lot of television characters who have annoying laughs, who basically have annoying laughs because the actor involved does, Kitty's laugh is not the actual laugh of actress Debra Jo Rupp.
- Chrissy on Three's Company was a snorter.
Janet: Well, at least I know how to laugh. Ahahahahaha! What do you do? SNORT! SNORT! SNORT! SNORT! SNORT! SNORT!...
- Arnold Horschach, from Welcome Back, Kotter, had the standard comedy relief "nerd asthma attack" style of annoying laugh.
- A Wings episode has Helen dating a man with a laugh like a braying hyena. It becomes so annoying that Helen eventually decides to break up with him because of it, but before she can do so, he dumps her because he cannot stand her Southern accent.
- Les Guignols de l'info: The puppet for Dominique Farrugia, humorist and former president of Canal+. His laugh sounds like a sea lion barking (and once attracted said animals).
- In Sesame Street:
- Bert had a machine gun chuckle, while Ernie had one which was sort of a cross between wheezing and gargling.
- Elmo also has his annoying "Uh-HA-ha-ha-ha-ha!"
- Dawn from the Rob, Arnie and Dawn Show has a very cackly and annoying laugh.
- During his tenure on The Howard Stern Show, the various laughs of Jackie "The Joke Man" Martling, were a fairly big part of the show — ranging from a low dirty giggle to a big expressive "Whoop!"
- Musical theatre singer Elaine Paige, who presents a BBC show on Radio Two on Sunday afternoons, possesses quite possibly the most uniquely memorable laugh on British radionote . It sounds like a cross between a braying donkey and a Looney Tunes character.
- During the wake held for their deceased comrade Jetstream, Achilles of the Global Guardians PBEM Universe turned to his teammate, Ultra-Man, and drunkenly asked, "Could you explain how a huge guy like you laughs like a six year old girl?"
- In Oklahoma!, the protagonist Curly dates a girl named Gertie to make heroine Laurey jealous. Gertie must be played by an actress who can affect an obnoxious laugh. An example of a particularly ear-splitting performance can be seen here. That's Gertie cuddling Curly and laughing uproariously at the beginning of the video, while Laurey looks on from the porch in disgust and irritation.
- A Very Potter Musical: This page needs to start doing things... THE UMBRIDGE WAY! A DERDERDERDERDERDER. The extended version when s/he tries to keep Harry from going to Hogsmeade is even more annoying.
- From Kingdom Hearts:
- Vexen and Larxene in the Japanese versions of Re: Chain of Memories. People on YouTube loop their laughs and dare people to see how long they can listen to them without clawing their ears forcibly off their heads. Have a listen.Or two. Make it stop indeed.
- Seeing how he shares his Japanese voice actor with Vexen, Professor Hojo from Dirge of Cerberus also possesses a high-pitched maddening cackle. Hear it for yourself.
- Heidegger from Final Fantasy VII has a "gya-ha-ha" laugh that irritates the other heads of Shinra to no end. There's also Scarlet's "kya-ha-ha," Bugenhagen's "Ho ho ho" Santa Claus laugh and... well, let's just say this game is loaded with characters that have annoying laughs and leave it at that.
- Final Fantasy X has a Signature Scene where Tidus and Yuna start messing around by doing deliberately horrible fake laughing off a balcony.
- Moe the clown from case 3 of Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Justice for All. "Aha! Aha! Aha! Aha!" You actually get penalized if you set off his laughter during the cross-examination, because the Judge is that annoyed by it.
- Yellow Heart of Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory lets out an ear-grating laugh that is downright terrible.
- In Katawa Shoujo, Misha's trademark "Wa ha ha~!" laugh seems to be this; it certainly seems to grate on Hisao's nerves after a while. Probably a good thing the developers decided not to go with full voice-acting...
- Soda Popinski of Punch-Out!! lets out a truly aggravating laugh when he knocks you down. It's bad enough in the Wii version, where it's a real person; in the NES version, it's an eight-bit digitized laugh, similar to the one used by Ganon in Zelda II: The Adventure of Link.
- Team Fortress 2:
- In killer7, your enemies are the dreaded Heaven Smiles who blow up on contact and laugh constantly. Each different Smile has a different laugh, a good number of which are extremely annoying. (Especially the Bombhead Smiles)
- A number of characters in League of Legends have rather annoying laughs:
- Most infamously Lulu and especially Lux who both have incredibly high-pitched and hysterical giggles. Extremely aggravating when spammed non-stop at your opponents, although you may find your teammates leaving you to fight alone just to get away from the sound. Picking Lux and spamming her laugh emotion is considered a free win in One for All games.
- Notably, Lux retains her laugh in her 2017 voiceover (done by the same voice actor years later), but her Elementalist Lux skin, which has its own unique VO reflecting a generally more mature, grown-up Lux (also done by the same VO) have more subdued laughs.
- Sweet Tooth and Heihachi lets out one of these in Playstation All Stars Battle Royale.
- Rochelle's laugh in Left 4 Dead 2 comes off as shrill and annoying, which is what some players do to annoy everyone else.
- A knight's laugh in The Last Story is used to show how pompous and corrupt he is, especially during the attack on Gurak civilians.
- In Jojos Bizarre Adventure All Star Battle, Ultimate-Life-Form Kars has an unbelievably irritating cackle Ha~ha~ha~ha~ha~! whenever he uses his long-ranged, obscenely powerful and unblockable tentacle attack that counters any and all attempts to jump close to him.
- Gannondorf and (as mentioned above) the dog half of the Duck Hunt duo in Super Smash Bros. 4. But somehow inverted w/ Palutena (who lets out a fetisy one during her pole-dancing taunt).
- This, amongst many other things, is the reason why Balloon Boy from Five Nights at Freddy's 2 is The Scrappy. He disables your lights and does nothing else except laugh at you. Over, and over, and over, until Foxy inevitably jumps you, or the clock rolls over to 6 AM.
- Hentai Woody of Slender Fortress is a prime example of this trope. When he kills someone, he lets out an extremely loud cackle that the entire server hears. It's fairly funny at first, but remember there's FOUR other clones of him. Say they all kill dozens of mercenaries at once. You've got yourself some class-A Ear Rape right there.
- Dota 2: Every single one of Sniper's laughs, usually from either using his abilities or killing you. "HO HO! HA HA!"
- Benedict the rocket wielding hawk man from Battleborn has a really annoying laugh. When laughing too hard, it'll sometimes go over into clucking. Amusingly enough, it seems to annoy him the most.
- Nahman of the GI Proz has a "Monkey Laugh," which can be heard on Kieza's channel.
- Professor Calamitous' daughter Beautiful Gorgeous in The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius. To go along with it, she also makes faces that go very against her namesake whenever she does.
Sheen: That laugh could get annoying.
- Lemongrab of Adventure Time. An utterly unnatural, unhappy shout of "HA HA HA!" The mentally disturbed failed science experiment's voice is high-pitched, loud, and nasally ANYWAY, but when he laughs, he sounds absolutely deranged. "HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH- OH! HAHAHAHHAHAHAOHHAOAHAOAHAOH..."
- Scratch from Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog: Being a robotic rooster, his laugh was intentionally made to sound like a rooster crow.
"We've got you now, hedgehog! Ba-HA ha-HAAA!!"
- Naturally, Beavis And Butthead's famous "Huh huh huh huh", uttered whenever something could be taken as a dirty joke, whenever they're aroused, or most commonly to end statements with. Would they really be Beavis and Butthead without it?
- Looney Toons:
- The earliest version of Bugs Bunny was merely irritating with a laugh very similar to Woody's...at a theater screening, when a dog finally hauled off and socked him, it was loudly cheered.
- Daffy Duck's "Woo-hoo! Woo-hoo!" in his earlier cartoons, which is all but phased out in later shorts.
- Elmer Fudd also had the machine gun chuckle, but his was the M60 machine gun to Popeye's .50 caliber.
- The gremlin from Falling Hare laughs the first notes of "Yankee Doodle".
- In the Brazilian dub of Cow and Chicken, Cow gains one that her voice actress said is meant to resemble a skidding car.
- Mandark from Dexter's Laboratory. It would later be revealed that the vague rhythm of his laugh applies to everything he does. "Brush! Brush brush! Brush brush brush buh brush!"
- The Kanker Sisters of Ed Eddn Eddy. Lee's sounds masculine, Marie has a high-pitched cackle, and May snorts. A lot of times, they sound like a bunch of hyenas. Kevin's laughter is really annoying as well.
- Family Guy.
- Goofy's "A-hyuk a-hyuk a-huh-huh-huh-huh-huh-HUH!"
- Oskar Kokoshka in Hey Arnold! has a very tired-sounding chuckle that he often makes at something he finds funny that other people around him do not.
- An episode of Jimmy Two-Shoes revealed that Heloise had cursed a man to never laugh because she thought his laugh was annoying.
- The one shot character Cissy Cobb from the King of the Hill episode "Peggy The Boggle Champ", it when something like "Ah haw haw haw ha!"
- Flapjack from The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack as a pretty lengthy and loud one that sorta sounds like Sponge Bob's laugh.
- Brattus from Mr. Bogus has a rather obnoxious-sounding laugh when laughing at Bogus's expense. Sometimes, however, he will just giggle in a matter near similar to that of Muttley.
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: The otherwise smooth and charismatic Flim Flam Brothers of the episode "The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000" celebrate their villainous victory with a gratingly nasal and monotonous cackle. It doesn't help that this is right after they've kicked the dog. Not a good way to start your business...
- Popeye has the machine gun chuckle. You're hearing it in your head right now as you listen to this, aren't you?
- This is a plot point in the Sanjay and Craig episode "Laugh Quake". Each of the title characters thinks the other has an annoying laugh, so they try to remedy it by going to a comedy club, where they are eventually kicked out. Later, both get crapped on by a bird, trying (and ultimately failing) to hold in their laughter, which eventually starts a chain reaction.
- Max Hare in the Silly Symphony short "The Tortoise and the Hare". "Ha-HAA-ha-HAA-ha-HAAAAAA!"
- SpongeBob SquarePants:
- SpongeBob has a combination High Nasal Twitter and Hyena-like Cackle.
- One of which is a dolphin "twitter" exactly like Flipper's.
- Squidward has a honky laugh. In the German dub, Squidward has this guttural cackle.
- Billy's laugh from The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy it goes like "Duhee Hee Hee Hee". His laugh is genetically carried over from his father.
- The Simpsons:
- Nelson's "HAAA-HA!" Deliberately annoying on his part, as it's always used mockingly.
- Krusty the Clown's goofy "A-Hoo-He-He-He-He!"
- Jerry from the Gene Deitch Tom and Jerry cartoons had a particularly obnoxious laugh.
- Mandy from Totally Spies!. Mandy has a really annoying laugh. It sounds like a goat's bleating. In the episode "Futureshock", where she's becoming the world's number one celebrity twenty years in the future, all of her admirers adopt the same laugh.
- Jack Spicer from Xiaolin Showdown. He's a Card-Carrying Villain constantly trying to perfect his Evil Laugh, but in this instance tries too hard.
- Woody Woodpecker:
- Woody's distinct laugh, which is meant to sound like a woodpecker tapping on wood.
- Parodied in Tex Avery's Screwy Squirrel cartoons, which contain a woodpecker with a laugh reminiscent of a woodpecker screaming through a duck lure.
- Screwy himself sometimes had a high pitched "ah-yuk-yuk-yuk" laugh.
- Mozart's laughter, according to historical accounts from his friends, did indeed sound like "the braying of a jackass" mixed with breaking windows and "grating a cobblestone down a piano's string."
- Every character Fran Drescher has ever played has a donkey-like nasal bray of a laugh... because the actress herself really laughs like that.
Roger Ebert: Fran Drescher is a taste I have not acquired, but I concede that one could acquire it. It would help if she made a silent film.
- Jimmy Carr compares his laugh to "a seal being molested". (It's also been compared to a goose being interfered with.)
Rob Brydon: Ditch it, and ditch it now.
- The French channel Canal+ caricatured its then-president Dominique Farrugia's laugh as sounding like a sea-lion.
- Craig Ferguson, when he first started hosting The Late Late Show, was told by his producer that his laugh made him "sound like a psychopath", a fault he openly acknowledged.
- Comedienne Sarah Silverman has a variety of these. Andy Samberg calls her out on it, then everyone tries to follow her with their own annoying laughs.
- According to her husband (Freddy Prinze Jr.), Sarah Michelle Gellar laughs "like a hyena suffering through an epileptic fit." According to him, he finds it endearing that she has the one "unforgiveable flaw".
- Jim Carrey once joked during an appearance on Letterman that success had introduced him to the way that wealthy people laugh.