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Arachnid Tropes

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Tropes pertaining to arachnids, arachnid-themed characters and things often associated with arachnids. Sub-index of Invertebrate Index, and consequently Animal Tropes. See also Insect Index for tropes pertaining to another class in the arthropod phylum.

The most commonly seen arachnids in fiction are the spiders and the scorpions (and, to a lesser extent, ticks), and thus most tropes on this page pertain to them specifically. The other groups of the arachnid family — the pseudoscorpions, mites, harvestmen, whip spiders, camel spiders, whip scorpions, and horseshoe crabs— are generally far less likely to show up, but do so from time to time.

Despite the names, Spider Tanknote , Demonic Spidersnote , Spider-Sensenote  and Stab the Scorpionnote  don't go on this index. Neither does Black Widownote .



  • All Webbed Up: The common fate of those unlucky enough to be captured by hungry spiders — being cocooned like a captured fly.
  • Arachnid Appearance and Attire: Characters with spider-themed wardrobes and appearances.
  • Artistic License – Arachnids: Scientifically inaccurate arachnids.
  • Bugs Herald Evil: Spiders, scorpions, and the like congregate around or react to an evil presence.
  • Cobweb Jungle: Cobwebs in abundance to amplify the fear factor.
  • Cobweb of Disuse: How do you show that a place is old and derelict? Drape cobwebs everywhere.
  • Cobweb Trampoline: Strangely bouncy and non-sticky spider webs used as trampolines.
  • Creepy Camel Spider: Solifugids portrayed as hyperaggressive desert terrors, often well beyond what they are in reality.
  • Friendly Neighborhood Spider: Spiders portrayed as friendly, well-disposed and heroic.
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  • Fuzzball Spider: Spiders depicted as being a single round shape with legs.
  • Giant Spider: Spiders large enough to pose a realistic threat to a human or whatever else the story focuses on.
  • Poison Is Evil: Spiders and scorpions alike are often despised specifically because the poison in their bites and stings can sicken or even kill their victims.
  • Projectile Webbing: Whens spiders, and sometimes other arthropods, possess the ability to shoot their silk and webs like a ranged weapon.
  • Seductive Spider: Spiders and spider-themed characters portrayed as alluring and attractive.
  • Scary Scorpions: Scorpions portrayed as terrifying, dangerous and aggressive, often far more so than they actually are in real life.
  • Scorpion People: Scorpion-human mixes, often quite asocial and found living in deserts.
  • Sneaky Spider: Spiders as tricksters or schemers.
  • Spider Limbs: Non-spiders with natural or artificial spider legs in addition to their regular limbs.
  • Spider People: Human/spider Mix-and-Match Critters, often with a human-like torso and head mounted on a spider's abdomen and legs.
  • Spider Swarm: Swarms of improbably social spiders moving — and hunting — as one.
  • Spiders Are Scary: Spiders portrayed as terrifying, venomous and dangerous, often far beyond any threat they actually pose in real life.
  • Tsuchigumo and Jorogumo: Spider Youkai of Japanese Folklore.
  • You Have to Burn the Web: Fictional spider silk and cobwebs are a lot more flammable than in real life.