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Creepy Doll

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And there's a creepy doll
That always follows you
It's got a ruined eye
That's always open

Dolls are perceived as harmless, and they can be gorgeous and/or adorable, but there's still something scary about dolls. It's probably because many of them fit squarely in Uncanny Valley territory. The blank gaze and unmoving stare reminds us too viscerally of corpses, perhaps. This goes even more when the doll is damaged in some way, such as missing limbs or eyes, or having holes in its head.

Another way to do it is make it a clockwork toy (usually an organ-grinder's monkey with cymbals); something that moves on its own when someone winds the key, then not have it wound up for years, and have it click its cymbals in a haunted, mechanical rendition of Terrible Ticking.

In horror, dolls are often used as part of the scenery to help establish the mood, even providing a theme for The Doll Episode. Like clowns, what should be a silly, innocent bit of childhood fun can make a scene ironically unnerving, depending on where they're placed, what they're doing, or even simply how they're lit. They may even be the antagonist or be used by the antagonist. Despite how ridiculous a doll trying to kill people should be, it's still seen as quite frightening. A similar idea lies behind the Demonic Dummy and Scary Scarecrows.



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  • In the 1998 ad for Hostess cup cakes, a boy torments a doll by fake-feeding it a cup cake toy. The doll angrily comes to life demanding to get a cup cake with a creamy filling.

    Anime & Manga 
  • There are countless mannequins strewn across the bar in Death Parade, which Decim collects as a hobby. Some are dressed up, most are nude, many are broken and faceless. As it turns out, the mannequins belong to former guests whose souls were either reincarnated or sent to the void, leaving their featureless bodies behind. As such, Decim has taken to collecting their bodies and dolling them up in their likeness to ensure they are not entirely forgotten, especially when he's subjected to frequent mind wipes to prevent the inevitable psychological strain of possessing many lifetime's worth of memories.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion:
    • There's one in Asuka's Mind Rape sequence. The truly horrifying part is when the doll is hanging from the ceiling spinning on the end of a rope along with Asuka's mother, Kyouko, who has just committed suicide. Scarier still were some of the scenes that were left in the director's cut of that episode. "Do you love me? Do you really love me?" "BUT YOU'RE LYING"
    • After piloting EVA 02, having half of her soul sucked out by it and going insane because of that, Kyouko is seen holding the same doll in her arms and talking to it, believing it to be her daughter and refusing to acknowledge the real Asuka as her kid. Now you know where Asuka's hate of the "doll" word and concept comes. Meaning Kyouko hanging the doll along with herself was an attempted murder-suicide. She wanted to take her daughter with her.
    • Asuka possesses one, and plays with it at one point in Rebuild of Evangelion 2.0. Also, according to many, it's by far the creepiest thing to come out of anything Evangelion-related ever.
  • In K, it's revealed in the manga Days of Blue that Gotou has a collection of freaky dolls that creep out Hidaka, his roommate. In fact, Hidaka escapes to Enomoto's room at one point since he was attempting to read a magazine in his own room, but the dolls kept staring at him.
  • Boogie-Kun of Karin is a doll possessed by a serial killer that holds a knife in its hand. And later on Anju mentions that she collects other creepy dolls that all have interesting histories. She then asks Karin if she wants to hear about them but Karin quickly leaves in fear.
  • Black Butler: The second opening of the second season has a scene where Grell Sutcliffe is holding a creepy doll version of Sebastian, which she kisses before placing it among doll versions of Ciel and Alois... which she then proceeds to drive her chainsaw through.
  • Ghost Hunt has Minnie, a possessed doll.
  • Death Note:
    • Near constantly plays with creepy toys and uses them to test his various theories.
    • Misa Amane wears an Elegant Gothic Lolita style dress in one instance, for when she was committing suicide after she thought Light died. Overall, the dress combined with her depressed facial expression and her dark make-up makes her look like a life-sized porcelain doll, to an eerie effect. That scene mirrors an earlier scene where Misa, dressed the same and traveling through the same setting, sings a capella about her devotion and trust to Kira. Though the lyrics are optimistic, her tone, and doll-like dress, makes the scene still quite creepy.
    • Up to Eleven in the live-action series, where Near communicates with Mello as a ventriloquist's dummy. It remains to be seen whether the dummy is Mello, or merely a representation of him, but either way, it's creepy.
    • One of the Shinigami, named Gelus, looks like a creepy doll. It's actually quite innocent and forlorn compared to the typically assholish, apathetic Shinigami, and having no friends and obsessing with the aforementioned Misa Amane.
  • In one episode of Mokke, a bunch of abandoned Hina dolls are possessing a bridge to try to get attention.
  • A creepy doll in traditional Japanese dress appears throughout Paprika. It starts out as a sort of dreamscape "avatar" of one character, but later takes on a life of its own.
  • Sailor Moon:
    • The episode "Shingo's Innocent Love! A Sorrowful French Doll" is all about the Creepy Dolls. Shingo's almost girlfriend Mika is a Child Prodigy doll maker who takes to working on her latest project nonstop after her and Shingo's friendship goes briefly sour, and once Nephrite targets her she starts making dolls who are REALLY damn creepy...
    • Also, more than one Monster of the Week, such as Murido, a sweet dream princess that is a youma under her cute face.
  • JoJo's Bizarre Adventure had a Stand called Ebony Devil, which was this.note 
    • Later in Part 3 is Telence T. D'Arby's doll collection. He uses his stand Atum to cheat in competitions to seal his victims souls into dolls he makes in their image. The dolls can still move in herky-jerky movements and talk.
  • An episode of Tactics featured a doll-maker and a house full of creepy dolls.
  • Rozen Maiden:
    • Suigintou, Barasuishou, and Kirakishou, the antagonist dolls. Interestingly, Suigintou is considered the most attractive Rozen Maiden, at least physically, and Barasuishou is reasonably popular as well. Both have Woobie qualities that endear them to fans. Even Kirakishou comes off as somewhat sympathetic in her insanity as she gets more developed in the tales.
    • The rows of lifeless dolls in Enzu's shop definitely count. Compared to the living dolls, even Suigintou, they are way creepier.
  • In Descendants of Darkness part of Kazutaka Muraki's general state of madness stemmed from memories of his mother's enormous collection of porcelain dolls. It didn't help that the panels of the manga depicting the dolls copy-pasted four or five of them to horrible heights of creepiness. In the opening of the anime, a child Muraki is seen among dozens of dolls; he then picks up one from the floor and holds it in his arms.
  • Dolls are a recurring motif in the Count Cain series. One chapter featured a girl in a leg-cast who kidnapped other girls to turn their corpses into dolls.
  • Kämpfer:
    • A line of stuffed animals that look like they committed Seppuku with their intestines sticking out, and two of their names translate to Suicide Tiger and Suicide Black Rabbit. These are FOR KIDS.
    • And the girl who looks the most girly of the characters has a room of them. And the main character is expected to sleep in there.
  • Season 1 of Shakugan no Shana had Friagne the Hunter, who, while he wasn't a doll himself, was way, way too attached to his Creepy Doll minion Marianne. The reason he's in town is so he can dissolve the city to give her real life.
  • Sorta the point for Hyde and Closer as dolls are used as curses to attack people. Even Hyde, the protagonist's doll, isn't exempt from this, it has a chainsaw sword in his zipper!
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!:
    • Yu-Gi-Oh! GX:
      • An episode has Jaden and his crew face a creepy doll come to life.
      • There's also the card Malice Doll of Demise, which serves as the figurehead for Jinzo/Psycho Shocker's deck. He even appears on the eyecatch.
      • And the "Rogue Doll" card.
    • Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL: IV (Four) uses a Gimmick Puppet Themed deck; his two Numbers cards are Gimmick Puppet — Giant Killer and Gimmick Puppet - Heaven's Strings both of which are uber creepy.
    • The original Yu-Gi-Oh! anime has one carried by Dark Necrofear — a baby doll with a large piece missing from its head, and a really creepy laugh. 4Kids apparently thought it too scary for the English dub, so it was edited out.
  • In Slayers NEXT, one of the possible locations of the Clair Bible is a tower full of these. In truth the dolls were mostly harmless (aside of just floating around) and people thought they were creepy due to a legend about the person who used to live there, a handsome yet lonely male dollmaker who supposedly turned the girl he was a Stalker with a Crush to into a creepy doll so she'd stay with him forever. Except for two of them, and one was a demon in the shape of the cutest doll of them all, making people believe that the other doll was a the dollmaker from the legend after a Deal with the Devil.
  • Road Kamelot from D.Gray-Man. As well as possessing a number of creepy dolls, she herself can transform into an extremely creepy doll.
  • The episode "Raindrops" from Witch Hunter Robin. A bunch of creepy dolls chanting "UNFORGIVABLE!" qualifies as some serious nightmare fuel.
  • The Zashiki-Warashi arc of Mononoke has a lot of these, representing aborted fetuses.
  • Gillen finds one of these in Monster, in relation to a serial killer he is examining.
  • Dear Brother:
    • One of the rooms at Fukiko's summer house is full of creepy dolls and obsessively arranged items of memorabilia from the day she first met her crush Takehiko Henmi, which she has since kept completely unchanged for six years and forbids anyone else to enter, save for herself and a maid whom she specifically tasked with its cleaning.
    • Rei Asaka also keeps one. It's both one of the dolls seen in the OP and ED, as well as one of the two gifts that Fukiko gave her some time ago (The other being a gold bracelet). That doll becomes Nanako's Tragic Keepsake, though the circumstances vary: in the manga Rei gives it to Nanako before committing suicide, in the anime Fukiko gives it to Nanako after Rei's fatal accident.
  • Reborn! (2004):
    • Ginger Bread is a Creepy Child and a vice-captain of the Millefiore Family's eighth squad, the enemies of the main protagonists in the future. He is also known as the Magician's Doll, primarily due to his usage of similar looking dolls that are clothed in a wizard's hat and cape, and have stars in their eyes (like he does), to fight. In addition, he uses spiders, summoned by what he calls sorcery. He claims to have had a hand in the death of Colonnello. As such, Lal Mirch engages him in battle, but after he loses, it is revealed that she was only fighting one of his dolls.
    • One of the Six Funeral Wreaths, Daisy is the holder of the Sun Mare Ring. He has a rather uncanny appearance with scars on his face, dirty-looking hair, sunken eyes, and carries a creepy plushie in his hands.
  • One shows up in the first episode of Texhnolyze while Ichise has sex with a bizarre, bionically augmented woman.
  • Ghost Stories features a supernatural doll named Mary who stalks the main character Satsuki throughout episode 11. At the end of the episode the Mary doll also commands other dolls to gang up on Satsuki and attempt to kill her all while singing a song about how they plan to do so.
  • PandoraHearts:
    • Will of the Abyss's Creepy Doll form, a rabbit in a dress with black, bleeding pits for eyes.
    • The demonic doll that attacks Oz when he falls into the Abyss (anime only).
    • The doll that Break keeps on his shoulder.
    • The Will of the Abyss's Room Full of Crazy is full of these.
  • Amatsuki: The doll that Ginshu keeps his/her soul in, what with its high pitched voice and jerky movements.
  • Bleach: In his released form, Szayel has the ability to create a small Voodoo Doll that has his enemy's likeness. Any damage done to the dolls' internal organs, accessed by taking the doll apart (which doesn't happen to the original) removing the organs and then crushing them, is done to the original, debilitating them from the inside. The doll's exterior has some effect on the victim as well, as seen when Ishida felt Szayel scratch and flick his doll's face. And Szayel later makes a voodoo doll of Mayuri who is pretty creepy himself... but Mayuri is so Crazy-Prepared that he manages to out gambit Szayel, as he had replaced his own organs with doll-like substitutes so Szayel's powers had no effect on him.
  • Negima! Magister Negi Magi: Chachazero, who doubles as a sort of evil peanut gallery.
  • In a Ranma ½ story, Ranma accidentally breaks a typical Japanese doll during a trip to a hot spring. The doll has magic powers, and it starts to plan her revenge by targeting Akane and switching bodies with her.
  • Episode 9 of Betrayal Knows My Name features a shop full of creepy dolls. And Elegant Gothic Lolita Ashley always seems to be carrying one around with her and uses them to attack people.
  • Vampire Princess Miyu has dolls as a sort-of theme in both the TV series/OAV:
    • In the TV series there is Matsukaze, a doll that Winter Royal Lady Reiha constantly carries around in her arms and seems to be there as a mouthpiece for Reiha's hate towards Miyu.He ends up pullin an Heroic Sacrifice to save Reiha's life.
    • Also, this is the shinma Ranka's true form in the second OAV. And she not only turns people into creepy dolls, but she does this to her love interest Kei. On Kei's own request, since he wants to be with her forever.
    • At the beginning of that same OAV, Miyu in a schoolgirl disguise passes by a toy store and sees a very pretty but creepy ichimatsu traditional doll (like these ones) and says "You're frozen in time too, hmmm" while smiling softly. That's foreshadowing of Miyu's true nature as a Shinma who's Older than she looks, having been turned into a Shinma at age 13 and given eternal youth at the same time.
    • In the TV series episode 19 "Love of the Dolls" "Ningyōshi no Koi" (人形師の恋)- the episode revolves around a doll-maker, who falls in love with one of her creations... and how things get very creepy from there on...
    • In the manga, there's another Shinma that pulls similar stuff on two of Miyu's school friends and a chubby Office Lady. His first victims were an antique shop owner and his son Takumi, whom he revived after they died in a fire caused by Miyu when she gave a Mercy Kill to Takumi's Shinma mother; then, he erased the two's memories and used them as his pawns.
  • Tsukiyo's doll Luna, from The World God Only Knows.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica:
    • Some of the witches' minions counts, especially Oktavia's Clarissas during episode 10, which are simply Sayaka's loosely copies of her friend and love rival Hitomi, in horrid colors.
    • Also, the witch Charlotte looks like a stuffed doll with creepy eyes. Before evolving into a much bigger form and killing/eating Mami.
    • As well, Albertine, as revealed in the official PSP game, appears as a giant clown-like doll.
  • Otogi Matsuri: The giant, eight legged cat/spider demon Kenzoku is accompanied by numerous creepy-looking dolls who refer to it as "Go-shu-jin sama" (meaning "Master of the House"), and who mainly serve to find humans to become the demon's next meal.
    Doll #1: Go-shu-jin sama, here.
    Doll #2: Over here.
    Doll #3: The new offering is here.
  • Ghost in the Shell:
    • The gynoids in Ghost in the Shell: Innocence are modeled after Hans Bellmar's Uncanny Valley doll-sculptures, and are every bit as creepy.
    • There's also the hacker Kim who lives in a (possibly virtual) giant dollhouse, and has his cybernetic body made to resemble a life-sized balljoint doll, and is more than eager to lampshade his creepiness at every opportunity.
  • Helen ESP has a school mannequin that falls in love with is maker, and because she can't have him, decides to kill him, all the while knowing just how wrong her actions are.
  • Hell Girl:
    • Mina, but we don't learn it for a while since she's a Third-Person Person who manages to fool Hajime and Tsugumi with her speech patterns.
    • Invoked to great effect in an early episode. A girl from an orphanage, Inori, is picked up by a dollmaker old woman named Kyogotsu, supposedly to marry her son... on the condition that she acts like a doll: she should only sit around, looking pretty and quiet, without even interacting with the family or her new husband. Naturally, poor Inori snaps after a while and, despite Hajime's warnings, she sends Mrs. Kyogotsu to Hell; fittingly, the upcoming scenes feature many of these dolls coming to life and attacking Mrs. Kyokotsu, then transforming her in a Creepy Doll before sending the old woman to Hell as Inori's revenge. Even the title of the episode lampshades it: it's Hanayome Ningyo, which means Bride Doll.
  • Anime film Unico in the Island of Magic by Osamu Tezuka, featured the main villain which embodies the creepy doll trope. The evil Lord Kuruku plans to turn all living creatures, animals and people alike, into "Living Puppets" and he himself is a puppet who was mistreated by his owners and discarded. He washed up at the edge of the world - where all unwanted "junk" ends up eventually - and was brought to life, determined to take revenge on the human race.
  • A major motif in Another. There's a dark and deserted doll store in the series' Town with a Dark Secret, where really really creepy ("laying in coffins, like corpses" creepy) are displayed, including one that looks eerily like Misaki, then there's the deal with her doll eye under her bandage. Also, in the anime, occasional flashes of dismembered sad eyed dolls dripping with Uncanny Valley-ness. Brrr.
  • Detective Conan has cases where traditional dolls play rather bloody and creepy role:
    • In one of them, there are mentions of a certain Shinto deity named the Kimono Goddess. She doubles as a goddess of revenge, and if a devotee of hers wants to ask her to sponsor their punishment of someone who has wronged them somehow, said person must make a creepy doll in paper and leave it in a box at the Goddess's shrine at midnight. Conan, Ran and a woman named Eri find two dolls in the local Kimono Goddess Temple, and talks about revenge are had. That same night, another doll is found... and it's wearing a demon mask. Few afterwards, two women named Ema and Asuka are stabbed to death, and in Ema's case there's a fourth paper doll on her pierced chest. And the killer is Eri, since they drove her long-lost sister Sakurako to suicide.
    • In another, Kogoro is hired by a man who is a member of a Big, Screwed-Up Family and makes creepy traditional dolls for a living. Not only he makes dolls... but it turns out he uses said doll making business as a cover for drug traffic, with the dolls being filled with cocaine bags.
    • In at least two murders, some rather creepy and old karakuri puppet dolls have been used by the killers to try giving themselves alibis.
  • The titular character of Higanbana no Saku Yoru ni is a youkai whose original form is that of a doll in the school infirmary. According to her ghost story, those who witness the doll dancing in the night will be cursed. Even in her human form, she is described as looking like a doll.
  • In Hell Teacher Nube, a girl named Shizuka has a traditional Japanese doll that grows its hair and asks Nube to check on it. He does, but ''all'' of the doll's hair falls out. There are other creepy dolls around, like a very detailed "visible human" doll whose left half exposes all its internal organs... and then comes to life and believes itself to be a real boy, forcefully pushing itself into anyone it could think of as a "friend".
  • In the X/1999 TV series, a creepy life-sized doll dressed in a red kimono is seen in CLAMP Campus. Tokiko gave it to the Canon Foreigner Chairman of said Campus and told him that she'd die soon via giving birth to one of the Shinken, and in that moment the doll would break and tell him not just what happened to her, but where to find the Shinken itself.
  • In the Cyborg 009 2001 TV series, one of these with the looks and size of an adult woman is found in the center of the Big Fancy House that is Cyborg 0012. The actual brains and control of the wayward house are implied to be inside the doll.
  • Junji Ito uses this trope to distressing effect in "A Doll's Hellish Burial", a one-shot comic included with some editions of his adaptation of Frankenstein. Over the course of six pages, a disease transforms a small girl named Maria into a doll, which is creepy enough on its own. It doesn't stop mutating her there, though.
  • The principal of Jujutsu Specialty High School of Tokyo, Masamichi Yaga, from Jujutsu Kaisen has a childish interest in creepy cute dolls. However, it is revealed that the cute dolls themselves are cursed and can become aggressive.
  • In Shadow Star, Norio Koga's hobby is creating dolls and puppets based on shadow dragons, and Needless to say, they're all kind of creepy. The creepiest of them all is a certain doll that's found hanging on the wall of Norio's best friend and Unrequited Love Takeo's house... with poor Norio's own head mounted on it. Needless to say, neither Takeo not Shiina's parents take the discovery well.
  • Q from Bungou Stray Dogs has a somewhat disturbing plush doll he carries everywhere. When he decides to use his ability, it starts laughing maniacally, even as he mutilates to activate his ability.
  • Nono in Urara Meirocho has a doll that not only talks, but also speaks exactly what Nono is thinking.
  • Overlord (2012): Nazarick uses them as part of a trap involving Albedo's sister Nigredo. When you enter Nigredo's room, you see a Stringy-Haired Ghost Girl holding a doll as if it were a baby and with many similar dolls near her, then shrieking that it's wrong and attacking you with scissors... unless you present her with one of the dolls claiming it is her baby. Note that she's actually one of the nicest (that is, Good-aligned) NPCs in all of Nazarick.


    Comic Books 
  • One of V's targets in V for Vendetta has a huge doll collection. When V abducts the man, the punishment he devises for the ex-concentration camp official is to populate a mock concentration camp with the dolls, and send them all to the ovens. It successfully breaks the man's mind, and the effect on the reader of all those dolls burning is none too pleasant either....
  • In an issue of the revamped CREEPY comics there was a story called The Doll Lady. Needless to say, it was creepy.
  • The Tails Doll from Sonic R made an appearance in Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics), being guarded by Cream the Rabbit. In the issue prior to the Mega Man crossover, Team Freedom discovered its true identity as a Badnik and moved to attack it - only for it to transform into a Mechanical Abomination. The fight was cut off just after its transformation by the Genesis Wave that started the Mega Man crossover, and since the reboot at the end of that arc, hasn't been revisited.
  • Johnny the Homicidal Maniac is constantly tormented by two vaguely human-shaped dolls called the Doughboys, which may or may not be alive. They're eventually confirmed to be extensions of the thing in Johnny's wall, working to drive him even crazier and/or render him suicidal for the sake of releasing it.
  • One of DC's stranger creations was Brother Power, a.k.a. the Geek, a tailor's mannequin brought to life by a combination of bloodstained clothing and a bolt of lightning. Essentially a human-sized living doll, he moved by shambling around bonelessly and when wounded, he remained alive and could be repaired by being sewn back together, leaving him covered in Scary Stitches. Being a doll, the Geek was completely unaware of how horrific he seemed to other people—which only made him more horrific for his innocent obliviousness. Strangely, the Geek was not a proactive character: he was literally only a doll, with the plot revolving around people's reaction to him. The character was revamped by DC's Darker and Edgier Vertigo line in the 1990s and became, somehow, even worse, gaining the ability to invest his spirit into any other doll, which would then bear his voice and his face. Ironically, the original character was created during The '60s to warn people that drugs can make you do weird things.

    Fan Works 
  • In Aeon Natum Engel, the cultist suffers a nightmare, where she hears a sobbing of a little girl. When she reaches the source, she finds five dolls, a large one and four smaller ones, laying broken before the large one. And then the larger doll starts screaming while sinking into the void. It Makes Sense in Context. Too much sense.
  • This is Naruto's reaction in the Naruto/Negima crossover Happy Families Are All Alike when he meets Chachazero. Not that she didn't have plenty of that to begin with...
  • In Horseshoes and Hand Grenades, its side story Month of Sundays has Damballa a Serpent who transforms people into creepy dolls. The people he transforms? Kamen Riders. He's made Shotaro into a marionette with nails for teeth and Haruto into a cloth doll with gold button eyes. He then transforms Eiji into a porcelain doll before sending them off to be killed by the Cosmic Hunting Dogs.
  • This story turns It's a Small World into an army of these. "You've been a very wicked man, Jacob..."
  • In Harry the Hufflepuff 2 Harry gets some help charming a life-size mannequin so it can take his place in History of Magic classes. Dubbed "Larry" by Luna, it gives everyone but the two of them an inexplicably creepy feeling.
  • The vocaloid fanfic Rotting Camellias has Mimi, Mayu's stuffed rabbit that is featured in her knife-throwing act.
  • In The Secret Life of Dolls, it's particularly bad with Tonner Edward Dollen, but at first when Anna Dollerious says what she thinks about getting The Littlest Edward:
    "[I'm] not so lonely that I wanna go to sleep and have THAT lurking over me when I wake up. And you know he'll, like, imprint on one of us or some shit—knowing your luck, E, he'll imprint on Cleo, and he'll just sit on her pillow all night, rocking back and forth."
    And we all shudder together. It's a nice feeling, sisterly solidarity.

    Films — Animation 
  • In Disney's The Princess and the Frog as Dr. Facilier is being dragged away by his "friends" some of them take the form of voodoo and rag dolls.
  • 9 has The Seamstress. It's a giant snake with a porcelain doll's head that grafts the corpse of 2 onto her tail and uses it to hypnotize 8 into submission, before sewing him inside her body and dragging 7 away and boasts numerous appendages just designed for slashing up the skins of the stitchpunks; thus rendering them immobilized.
  • The doll that the Other Mother frequently remakes in Coraline. All of the Other people invoke this themselves, with their creepy button eyes. The Other Mother's true form is especially doll-like, with cracked porcealin skin.
  • Toy Story has one, although it's the face of a doll on top of metal spider legs. It's not exactly evil but it's still fearsome. The other toys can also be this way if they choose, as shown when they rebel against Sid.
  • Toy Story 3 has an even scarier doll in "Big Baby", as well as... the monkey. It takes the point further that while Sid's toys look creepy but are ultimately friendly in spite of their bad situation, Big Baby and the monkey are working for the film's villain until the very end.
  • In Monsters University, the walking girl doll that Mike and Sulley use to creep out the human police.
  • One of the modern monsters in Monster Mash (2000) is an evil wind-up doll named Chicky, the Doll of Destruction. She's a Captain Ersatz of Chucky, only differentiated by her green skin and other gender. She wears her hair in Girlish Pigtails, but one of the tails is the wind-up key. Her weapon of choice is a remote control with which she can change the environment around her.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The Boy prominently features one of these in Brahms, an effigy of a nine-year-old boy who died years ago. Except that the movie is actually a subversion, and there's nothing supernatural about the doll whatsoever - because the real Brahms didn't die at all, and is in fact now a grown Psychopathic Manchild making the doll move when no one is watching.
    • In the sequel, this is retconned into a straightforward example - apparently the doll was possessed by a supernatural creature all along, and the previous movie was just one in a long line of incidents caused by the doll.
  • Clown Motel: There are plenty of creepy clown dolls on the property. The camera shows a couple of shots that just show the dolls.
  • Doll Factory: The titular dolls are little grey bald-headed people in black dresses who are trying to collect souls for their master.
  • The 1987 movie Dolls has several people taking refuge in an old mansion filled with all sorts of dolls. Turns out that they are inhabited by supposedly "fairies" in truth, evil men, which start attacking the characters.
  • The various mannequins in Tourist Trap, which are controlled by their owner.
  • The Zuni Fetish Doll from the last segment of Trilogy of Terror, which comes alive after a certain necklace is removed from its neck and starts vehemently chasing the main character.
  • The razor-toothed killer dolls from Barbarella.
  • The Clown Doll from Poltergeist. For the first half of the movie, it just sits on a rocking chair, doing nothing. Then it disappears....
  • Deep Red: the walking deformed doll provides a Jump Scare.
  • Child's Play:
    • A dying serial killer Charles "Chucky" Lee Ray transfers his soul into a doll, and continues to cause havoc as he searches a proper new body.
    • There's also Tiff and Glenn from the same series. Though Glenn is somewhat of a subversion and Tiff is... Tiff.
  • All of the puppets from the Puppet Master franchise.
  • Reincarnation (a.k.a. Rinne) features one of the creepiest damn ones you may ever see.
  • Parodied in a fake French commercial under the brand of "Dolls Klaus Barbie". At that time, Klaus Barbie was a former Nazi being tried for crimes against humanity.
  • The opening of Titanic (1997) features a group of divers exploring the Titanic wreck. A few shots pan across some of the destroyed trinkets and other such former valuables scattered across the ocean floor. One shot reveals an eerie white face that resembles a child and for a moment you think it's a child's detached head, but it turns out to just be a lone face separated from a doll. Based on a Real Life story. Bob Ballard on his first visit to the wreck by manned submersible encountered a disembodied doll's head just like the one in the Cameron film. The sub's crew of three hardened explorers freaked out at this discovery.
  • The abandoned baby doll in Johanna's bassinet from Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. It's decayed with age and probably smoke damage/mildew, and is damn scary. (This scene also serves as an Empathy Doll Shot for Johanna's current plight.)
  • Subverted in Pinocchio's Revenge, a B-slasher film. The kid had a split personality which she projected onto her doll.
  • Black Devil Doll is a Blaxploitation slasher flick with a radical black activist being reincarnated as the eponymous doll.
  • Borderline example in Casey, Newt's doll in Aliens. It's just a hollow plastic head, which probably used to belong to a baby doll. The girl comforted it when she was nervous to try to reassure herself.
  • Red Dragon focuses on a Serial Killer who murders families in their beds. While at one particular crime scene, the camera would often dwell on the creepy old antique dolls of a murdered child. The Uncanny Valley effect of the dolls' eyes actually helps the hero to figure out part of the killer's motivating fantasy.
  • In Shallow Grave there is a perfectly normal laughing doll. It still manages to get a creepy scene.
  • A Nightmare on Elm Street: Freddy Krueger often decorates his victims' dreams with mutilated dollies, and is occasionally seen holding one by its legs or hair. A symbolic nod to his past killings of young children, which we never actually see on-screen.
  • Subverted in Summer School, where the male lead is seen slicing the head off a Raggedy Andy doll. This could've been creepy, had he not immediately offered the cloth head to his dog, whose favorite doll-head chew toy has been misplaced.
  • The titular carnival attraction in The Funhouse is filled with them.
  • Maniac! (1980)s Frank Zito keeps various mannequins in his apartment as odd trophies that wear the clothes and scalps of his female victims. In the ending, he has a hallucination where they come to life and rip him into pieces.
  • In Amusement there is a scene where a babysitter goes to bed in a room filled with creepy clown dolls. She is so disturbed that she complains on the phone to the parents of the kids she's watching, especially about one freaky life-sized clown doll sitting in a chair. The parents reply that there is no "big" doll. It turns out it's a killer in disguise, which the kids have for some reason let into the house because he said he wanted to play.
  • In the miniseries for The Tommyknockers, police officer Ruth has a collection of creepy dolls in her office. After she finds out what's going on with the town, the aliens make the dolls come "alive" and attack her, to prevent her from phoning for help. The scarecrow doll is especially scary.
  • Dead Silence is a good example of how creepy a doll can really be even when NOT possessed by evil spirits bent on ripping out your tongue and making you into part of its collection.
    • That same film's director, James Wan, would go on to make The Conjuring, featuring an especially scary doll, who is possessed by a demon.
  • In the 1951 version of Scrooge, Tiny Tim is first seen gazing into a shop window with (authentic Victorian) mechanical toys, including a laughing-man doll that's pure nightmare fuel - although Tim seems to find it charming.
  • The Woman in Black just loves this trope. Everywhere you look in the spooky ole house, there's a doll on a shelf with a truly hideous face. Even the 'normal' kids at the start of the film are playing with some creepy dolls.
  • The functional equivalent thereof in Mad Love, in which Dr. Gogol, having been rejected by a pretty actress, buys a wax dummy of said actress. And has his maid brush the dummy's hair. And buys a negligee for the dummy.
  • The movie The Conjuring and its spinoff Annabelle features a truly creepy doll by the name of Annabelle that has been possessed by a demon, and is apparently based on a real-life case (see Real Life below).
  • Full Circle features a cymbal-clapping clown doll, whose cymbals are dangerously sharp. Sharp enough, it turns out, to slit a throat...
  • In It's Pat!, Kyle's obsession with Pat includes him having a Pat doll.
  • Ant-Man. The bunny doll that Scott gives to his daughter for her birthday looks like it came straight from Monty Python. She loves it.
  • In The Blair Witch Project, the group is camping in the forest and encounters a bunch of stick-doll effigies hanging from the trees.
  • In Onryō! Azawarau Ningyō, Junichiro is killed because he's got evidence of a huge case of fraud by a colleague of his, Kitahara, who incidentally also is a former rival over Kumi, Junichiro's wife. The only thing of Junichiro that makes it back home is a doll he bought for his daughter Yukari. Said doll becomes a vessel for Junichiro's spirit, enabling him to protect his family from Kitahara and obtain justice for his murder. It kills Kitahara in an act of defending Kumi and Yukari when Kitahara's scheme comes to light. Thereafter, the doll returns to normal.
  • Baby Jane?, a 2011 parody remake of the original Whatever Happened To Baby Jane, featured a creepy Baby Jane doll that would inexplicably animate itself in various scenes, culminating in the final scene where she comes to life and repeats a line said by Baby Jane earlier in the film.
  • In Dead Birds, Clyde finds a ragdoll with stitching that makes it look like the eyes and mouth have been sewn shut. This turns out to be Foreshadowing as Clyde is eventually strung up as a Scary Scarecrow with his eyes and mouth stitched shut.
  • Razors: The Return of Jack the Ripper, the ghost of the little girl is carrying a porcelain doll. When the protagonist find the doll in the attic it is even creepier close up, with a maze of cracks running through its face. The flickering light causes its eyes to appear completely black.
  • "Billy", in the Saw films, whose image is used to relay to rules of Jigsaw's latest trap.
  • Sheitan: Eve's father owned a doll store, and the house contains a dollmaker's workshop full of partially-built dolls and doll parts, and his collections of antique marionettes and giant dolls in the attic. All of this is quite creepy. Additionally, Marie is sneaking around the house assembling a doll with a broken head that she keeps attaching human parts to.
  • Underworld U.S.A.: After Cuddles passes out, she wakes up on the bed in the room that houses Sandy's doll collection; which are staring at her unnervingly.

  • One of the urban legends in Japan is about Mary-san, a French doll.note  She's loved by her owner, but said owner loses her at some point. Then one night, when the owner is home alone, she gets a call from Mary-san, who notifies her she's at the city dump. This call is followed by more, with Mary-san each time announcing she's at a location closer to her owner than the last, until she tells her owner to turn around. Her owner is found dead the next morning.
  • Another one of the urban legends in Japan is about Okiku, a traditional Japanese doll. In 1918, the doll came into the possession of a young girl who shortly after died of a cold. Her family made her a shrine and added the doll to it. Then the doll's hair supposedly started to grow, causing the family to conclude it held part of the girl's spirit. The family moved away some decades later and left Okiku with the local Mannenji Temple, where it's still on display. The doll isn't dangerous and likes being maintained by the monks.

  • The psychological horror book "Frozen Charlotte" by Alex Bell features a collection of creepy dolls.The author based it on a real creepy doll
  • In Richard Matheson's short story "Prey", a young woman is terrorized by an African Zuni warrior doll that she brings home as a gift for her boyfriend, and which subsequently comes to life. (The story was memorably adopted as part of the ABC TV movie Trilogy of Terror in the '70s.)
  • Horror novelist Ruby Jean Jensen wrote extensively about creepy dolls: Annabelle, in which a small girl discovers a collection of living dolls in an abandoned mansion with a past; Victoria, where the killer doll has a good twin; Mama, where a mangled, barely mobile doll still manages to drag herself around and hug people to death; The Living Evil (spoilers: the evil is a doll); and Baby Dolly (self-explanatory), among others.
  • In Betty Ren Wright's The Dollhouse Murders, the dolls themselves aren't exactly creepy, but their actions are: every night, they reenact the murder of the main character's grandparents, arranging themselves in the same rooms and positions in which the bodies were found. Even creepier, the main character discovers this when she wakes in the night to hear the dolls sobbing in terror.
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events: Pretty Penny, a doll that Aunt Josephine gave Violet in The Wide Window.
    • Also the movie adaption of the first three books in the series has a creepy bobble head doll called "the littlest elf'' in the rearview window of Count Olaf's car.
  • Stephen King:
    • In the story The Sun Dog, a character thinks that a toy (not exactly a doll, but a stuffed panda, that talks) that her niece has is very creepy, and imagines that one day, it will say stuff like: "I think tonight after you're asleep, I'll strangle you to death" or "I have a knife".
    • The Monkey, about a doll-like toy whose clanging on its cymbals signals someone's death. Even if you throw it away.
  • The Ragwitch. The titular Creepy Ragdoll is an Evil Overlord that takes over the body of the protagonist's sister, turning her into a half-human, half-cloth thing and forcing her to watch helplessly from inside as the Ragwitch resumes Her interrupted reign of terror.
  • In Elizabeth A. Lynn's The Silver Horse, a world of animate toys includes broken dolls who are very, very bitter about the wrongs committed upon them by careless children.
  • The action figure in the short story "Good Friends and Good Family" (scroll down) by Desmond Warzel isn't particularly creepy at first, but it gets worse.
  • J.R. Lowell's Daughter Of Darkness is about Willie, a super-intelligent little rich girl who collects dolls — not the cute kind, either — from all over the world. The maid refuses to clean Willie's room because she feels like the dolls are "watching" her. She's right.
  • There's a short story about a girl who goes to stay with her aunt for a vacation. While there, she finds her aunt's old china doll, which is described as being very beautiful, except for its orange-ish, creepy eyes. When she keeps the doll in her room at night, she sees the eyes are glowing and freaks out. The doll becomes less creepy when we find out later why the eyes look the way they did - one of the doll's previous owners died in a fire and the doll, sitting on a mantleplace, had to watch. The orange coloring was the firey scene, replaying in her eyes. After the girl comforts the doll, the eyes turn to a normal grey color.
  • Terry Berger's The Haunted Dollhouse may have the dollhouse's owner turning into one of these.
  • The young woman in Robert Holdstock's Lavondyss has a good reason for making her masks and figurines, but the old caretaker thinks he's on to her. "There's dolls you play with, and dolls you pray with..."
  • In an 87th Precinct novel by Ed McBain, a doll has a recording of an actual murder in it.
  • The House of Dolls in Septimus Heap is filled with these, to the point that even the protagonists find it creepy.
  • The Birthing House features one of these during one of the first nights Colin spends in the house.
  • Robopocalypse Baby Comes Alive turns into this.
  • Johannes Cabal the Necromancer has one of these as a prize in the title character's demonic carnival.
  • In Stephen King's The Tommyknockers Ruth McCausland has a doll collection which frightens two children and gives her brief uneasy feelings before the Becoming. After the Becoming first starts, they begin talking to her...
  • The War Against the Chtorr. McCarthy becomes a Parental Substitute for several traumatised orphans, one of whom keeps a stuffed bear with its head missing. McCarthy thinks of sewing another head on the bear, but is warned against it by the other members of the orphanage, who explain the child is likely to freak out if his toy suddenly has unfamiliar features.
  • The dolls in M. R. James' "The Haunted Dolls' House," which come alive to reenact a murder and its aftermath.
  • The dolls in William Sleator's book "Among the Dolls" belong to a girl who makes their lives as depressing as she thinks her own life is. Somehow she is turned into a doll herself and trapped in their house. The dolls, now fully alive, are definitely not pleased with her. The tagline for the book? "Now she's their toy."
  • In The Lonely Doll books by Dare Wright, the doll herself isn't so creepy, but her situation is. The doll starts off apparently abandoned in a highrise penthouse, and when she finally gets company, there's a lot of disapproval and spankings.
  • One of Gahan Wilson's cartoons, which was used as the cover and the title of a collection of his works, shows an attic with all the broken toys - rocking horses with broken legs and teddy bear without an eye or an arm. And the teddy bear is telling the others - "Someday when he's old and weak, he'll get nostalgic and come up here to see us. Then we'll get him."
  • "Doll Bones" by Holly Black is centered around a china doll made from the ground-up bones of a murdered girl. The children have to find the girl's grave and bury the doll or be cursed/haunted forever.
  • In Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Cabin Fever, Greg recollects about a baby doll called Alfrendo his mother gave him in order to train him for being an older brother to his yet-unborn younger brother Manny. The doll is already rather unnerving, having huge eyes being rather realistic looking in-universe, but then things get worse when Greg stumbles upon it in the basement several years after it disappeared.
  • In the Deptford Mice book The Crystal Prison, the well-meaning Audrey creates a corn dolly as a decoration for the Hall of Corn in Fennywolde. Without her knowledge, it is brought to life by Jupiter's dark magic and becomes a serial killer that strangles several mice to death.
  • Josh Malerman's "The House of the Head" is an unusual twist on the trope: a creepy doll's head menaces not the story's protagonist, but the dolls in her dollhouse.
  • In the "Tamir Triad", gifted dollmaker Princess Ariani begins to produce mouthless but otherwise perfect dolls in response to the death of her newborn son. This behavior culminates in the creation of a ragged, smelly, faceless doll that contains the soul (and bones) of her dead son. As bad as the nobles thought the mouthless dolls were, the faceless doll is seen as a definitive sign of madness from just about everyone who knows her.
  • Elijah of Buxton: Emma Collins' doll is made from a sock that had rope tied around the neck to form a head. It also has two big brown buttons for eyes, and six little buttons for teeth. Elijah thinks it's scary.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Drusilla has a plethora of these. Her favorite doll is called Miss Edith. ("Miss Edith speaks out of turn. She's a bad example, and will have no cakes today.")
  • On CSI's seventh season, the Miniature Killer placed a picture of a creepy bisque doll in each of the crime scene miniatures. It turned out to be a symbol of her dead sister. Or possibly of her?
  • The Twilight Zone had Talky Tina, a surprisingly creepy and murderous doll.
    • "Talky Tina" was inspired by a real toy, "Chatty Cathy," a doll produced by Mattel beginning in 1959. June Foray, who provided the recorded voice Mattel used for Chatty Cathy, also provided CBS with the voice for Talky Tina.
    • This was parodied in The Simpsons "Treehouse of Horror" with a killer talking Krusty doll. However, unlike Tina, someone had accidentally set it to "evil" instead of "good."
    • Also parodied in the Johnny Bravo episode "Little Talky Tabitha".
    • Ironically in the case of Talky Tina, the creepy doll is more of the good guy of the story, especially considering what a jerk the guy she torments was to his wife and stepdaughter. At least until the end, anyway, when it's revealed she wasn't just trying to teach him a lesson, but actually made good on her threats to kill him, thus showing that the doll was not only murderous but selfish as well, as her actions had nothing to do with getting him to be nicer to his wife and stepdaughter, it's implied that she would then control the mother with fear and eventually reveal her true form to the daughter. At the end of the episode, Rod's closing statement says that while dolls can't really move or talk, children do pretend that they're friends and defenders.
  • In the episode "Multiple Plots" of The King of Queens Doug delivers a package to a man who runs a doll hospital out of his home. While waiting, Doug picks up one of the dolls the guy is repairing. It says "Mommy!", Doug utters a terrified "Oh, my God!" and throws the doll away.
  • Psych had two creepy dolls in the episode "Tuesday the 17th"
    • The first doll was a papier mâché pinata of Rick Astley created by Shawn when he was a kid
    • The second was an exact replica of the Robert the Haunted Doll that was carried around by one of the characters.
    • One could also argue that the two wrestling dolls Shawn and Gus played with in "Let's Get Hairy" were creepy
  • A doll in Ghost Whisperer. To make things worse, the doll was disfigured and its clothes were torn and stained. Ugh!
  • Rod Serling must have been a fan of this trope, because Night Gallery had the episode, "The Doll" which had, you guessed it, a creepy doll that was actually part of a revenge curse.
  • Episode 12 of The Amanda Show had a skit called "Rock-a-Bye Ralph." A little girl (Amanda Bynes) can't sleep because of a thunderstorm, so her parents give her the titular toy—a smiling doll in pajamas that says cutesy bedtime phrases ("I love you! Time to go sleepy!"). While the girl thinks it's sweet at first, Rock-A-Bye Ralph refuses to shut up and endlessly blathers in his saccharine voice, driving her crazy and, paradoxically, keeping her awake even more. But no matter what she does—from ripping out his batteries to jamming him in a drawer to tossing him out the window—Ralph just keeps chattering. It looks as though the girl finally wins after calling her puppy to eat Ralph...that is, until the doll starts talking from the dog's stomach.
  • There were a few of these in Are You Afraid of the Dark?:
    • The episode "The Tale of the Dark Music" had a life-sized walking and talking doll, with a creepy perpetual grin, dressed in a cute blue party dress acting innocent and nice, when it really had evil intentions and wished to lure the male lead in that episode into the dark cellar behind it.
    • The episode "The Tale of the Dollmaker" was essentially about a girl who is distraught over the disappearance of her friend. She finds a mysterious doll house whose front door matches one she uncovers behind wallpaper in the attic. Through the door, she finds her missing friend who is slowly turning into a china doll. She herself almost turns into one as well.
    • The episode "The Tale of the Crimson Clown" had a young bratty boy learn a lesson when an evil clown doll came to life and started to terrorize him.
    • Heck, the intro sequence features one at around 00:12. This show really loved its creepy dolls.
  • Sabrina the Teenage Witch had a creepy doll called Molly Dolly chase her around her home in a Halloween episode.
  • The X-Files episode "Chinga" (written by Stephen King) had one that drove people to inflict harm on themselves ("Let's have fun!").
    • In "Born Again", Michelle's therapist would sometimes leave Michelle alone in her office with a doll, and Michelle would disfigure every doll by tearing off an arm and gouging out an eye. She shows Mulder an entire shelf of these dolls. It's even more disturbing when we learn why Michelle was doing this: she was the reincarnation of a murder victim and she was re-enacting the post-mortem mutilation that had been done to his body.
  • Dark Shadows featured an episode where two children are turned into dolls.
  • Once Upon a Time explained the backstory of Pinocchio and Jiminy Cricket; his parents were turned into two creepy dolls now owned by Rumpelstiltskin.
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm: Susie's daughter Sammy has loads of these decorating her room.
  • The incredibly creepy (at least, to a 12-year-old) 1985 BBC series Maelstrom featured lots of scary dolls in the darkened attic of an old log cabin.
  • Hidden camera show Scare Tactics has a collector of creepy dolls-one of which being his "mother"-as one of their favorite setups.
  • Power Rangers S.P.D. "I"m Cindy Sunshine, and I want to be your friend." Uh... no thanks. (It's not the voice speaking through it - provided by a known character - but more The Exorcist-like head-turning at one point.)
  • The doll that started off the merry cursed antique hunt of Friday the 13th: The Series even had a name: Vita. She talks, she kills, she has telekinetic powers!
  • Criminal Minds: A female UnSub made creepy dolls out of her victims, which she kidnapped, kept chemically immobilized but conscious, dressed up and played tea party with until they died from lack of stimulation. In her defense she didn't intend to kill them and had a Freudian Excuse: Her real, er, actual dolls (American Girls expies) were a gift from her abusive dad after he molested her then electroshocked her to make her forget (he was a psychiatrist), but when she saw him giving them to his latest victim she snapped.
    • The dolls themselves caused some creepiness: a costume and essay contest by the doll company accidentally revealed some disturbed little girls; it turns out they had accidentally stumbled onto an (actual) form of trauma therapy.
  • An episode of Ghost Hunters had the team visit a woman who claimed her house was haunted. Among other things, she said that the ghost made her doll "perform" for her (something like the face moving). The team recorded the doll, but thank God nothing actually happened. One of the crew members was visibly relieved he didn't have to witness anything.
    • An episode of Destination Truth had Josh and the group on the Island of The Dolls. A doll's eye actually opens up.
  • Seinfeld:
    • In one episode, Susan had a doll that looked just like George's mother, Estelle. George couldn't sleep with it in the bed, and he kept imagining it talking to him in Estelle's voice. Meanwhile Susan kept insisting that it looked nothing like Estelle and George was being ridiculous. When Frank saw the doll at the end of the episode, he also imagined it talking to him in Estelle's voice, then strangled it and pulled its head off.
      George: [to Susan] I told you it looked like her.
  • Supernatural: The episode "Playthings" is chock full of 'em.
  • One episode of CSI: NY had a murder in a doll hospital. They ended up finding an important piece of evidence: a recording in a doll. To try and figure out how to activate it, they take off the doll's head, with all the wires hanging out of it, like veins and intestines. Then they turn it on and it says in a semi-demonic voice "My Name is Sophie."
  • Sesame Street: This creepy segment has nightmare inducing closeups of several dolls, accompanied by an extremely creepy march.
  • Shining Time Station used to have these brief skits where the jukebox had puppets that would play music. Let's just say the puppets were...horrifying and leave it at that.
  • Tales from the Crypt: The episode "Strung Along" features a marionette puppeteer about to make a comeback and gets the help of a young animatronics engineer, but as he starts suspecting his wife of cheating on him, the doll seems to speak to him, indicating that he is starting to go crazy with stress. In the final act, the doll does attack his wife, though it turns out to be the work of the animatronics worker, as he and the wife had set up the whole thing to kill him. But when the police arrive, the two of them are dead as well, wires dangling from their limbs and leading up to the old man, now dressed up as his doll, grinning eerily from atop the bed. It's pretty freaky.
  • Invoked, in a way, on Mad Men: Sally is terrified of her baby brother because he was named after her deceased grandfather, whom she loved dearly, and he now sleeps in his bedroom. Betty tries to give her a barbie doll "from the baby" to make Sally like him, but she throws out in the front yard. Don makes the mistake of bringing the doll in and leaving it on Sally's nightstand, looking right at her. Cut to Sally screaming bloody murder in the middle of the night, staring at that doll in utter terror. Not creepy to the audience, but clearly damn creepy for the character.
  • Doctor Who has the Doll Children from "Night Terrors", who sing nursery rhymes, laugh like children and can turn you into one of them. They aren't as well-put-together as some of the examples here, either, which possibly makes it worse.
  • Freaky dolls with frighteningly big eyes appear in several Toei tokusatsu series ranging from Space Sheriff Shaider to Gosei Sentai Dairanger. Probably the freakiest example is in Jikuu Senshi Spielban!
  • The Hardy Boys Nancy Drew Mysteries: The episode "House on Possessed Hill" has Joe Hardy walking into a room of a cursed house...with a creepy animated toy doll nodding its head in time to creepy tinkly music box chimes.
  • The River gives us this en mass in an episode based on La Isla de la Munecas (see Real Life section).
  • White Collar has El's parents restoring a doll that they think she loved as a girl and giving it to her as a birthday present. It appears to be a beggar girl with enormous black eyes in an elongated head. El had shoved it into a crawlspace because she hated it so much.
  • True Blood has one turn up in Bill's house, while Jessica and Hoyt are living there. The doll is so creepy, they give it to Arlene's baby, which attracts the ghost of a local witch.
  • Tower Prep: Senor Guapo appears as one of these during Gabe's dreams.
  • Psychoville has Freddy Fruitcake, Joy's Replacement Goldfish for the real baby she lost to cot death. It's unclear whether or not there may be a spark of life in Freddy.
  • Kamen Rider OOO has Kiyo-chan, the bald, white-suited doll belonging to Dr. Maki. It originally belonged to his older sister, who he killed in a fire. It has a rather unsettling habit of moving apparently on its own.
  • Murdoch Mysteries had a few of those:
    • "Belly Speaker": The belly speaker's puppet was very disturbing. The fact that it was manufactured to look like its owner, complete with different colored eyes, added to the creepiness factor.
    • In "Me, Myself and Murdoch", the constables found a rag doll without an eye found in a Creepy Basement. It was buried there with a chopped up skeleton.
    • "Murdoch in Toyland": Detective Murdoch was taunted by a series of dolls with recorded messages as a part of Criminal Mind Games scheme. Lampshaded by Inspector Brackenried: "I know it's supposed to be adorable, but to me it just looks bloody creepy."
    • In "Friday the 13th 1901", Julia gets locked in a cold storage cellar and finds a childish drawing and a doll, which triggers her memories of James Gillies who kidnapped her and buried her alive. She is later reminded of this again when going over Gillies case file and looking at a photo of one of the dolls.
  • Salem: The poppet Mary puts in Anne's room.
  • Prudence from One Big Happy has a pair of creepy marionettes that she used to entertain children with at a hospital. Marionettes just happen to be Luke's fear. She hangs the puppets above their bed.
  • 100 Things to Do Before High School: CJ's doll freaks out her father. It has one eye missing. He especially dislikes the accompanying knife that the doll can hold.
  • Bar Rescue: Royal Oaks, one of the decrepit bars, is littered with them, amongst other equally uncomfortable and offensive decor.
  • Face/Off season 7 had a design challenge based around making these; every artist had to pick a different type of doll and make it into a fantasy/horror creature. Creepy dolls have also been made in other episodes, including one that was both a doll and a clown.
  • Legends of Tomorrow: Season Four episode "Hell No, Dolly!", the Legends find themselves fighting against the spirit of a serial killer known as Mike the Spike that possesses dolls to murder his victims.
  • Lucha Underground: Between Seasons 3 & 4, Ricky Mundo visited the Island of the Dolls and returned with Rosa the Doll, who ups the ante with a healthy dose of Demonic Possession. At the end of the Season 4, Rosa possesses Taya Mundo and proclaims herself a god.
  • It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia plays this trope for comedy: After Dennis leaves in the finale of season 12, Mac has apparently purchased a life size male Sex Doll and dressed it to resemble Dennis. Initially it creeps out everyone who encounters it, but over time the cast begin hallucinating conversations with it (the waitress eventually ends up sleeping with it). At the end of the episode, it briefly appears that the Gang have lost their minds, as the doll suddenly speaks and moves about. It's then revealed that Dennis was actually back; he tossed the doll out of sight and took its place because he wanted to gaslight the rest of the Gang.
  • Inverted by Saturday Night Live in a cut-for-time Parody Commercial for "My Little Step Children" dolls. The dolls are rather gothic-looking, but otherwise harmless and in fact sympathetic. The creepy part comes from the fact that they're marketed to kids who want to play Wicked Stepmother and abuse their "children" in campy, melodramatic fashion.
    "The first time I bought Lisa a doll, she said she felt no real connection to it, like there was a sheet of glass between her and the doll. With My Little Step Children, she no longer feels forced to change that."

  • As you can see at the top of the page, Jonathan Coulton has a song about this very trope. In fact it's the Trope Namer. It tells a story in the second person about how you buy a rustic cottage with your "bag of big-city money" and discover a doll in the attic with "a ruined eye that's always open" and "a pretty mouth to swallow you whole." The doll begins popping up everywhere, tormenting you, and then the two of you die in a fire. This may or may not be all in your head. Sleep tight!
  • Laura Branigan's song "Self Control" begins and ends with a shot of a rather creepy doll.
  • The video to the song "Technologic" by Daft Punk.
    • It should be. It's the animatronic Chucky doll used in Child's Play (mentioned above) with its silicone skin removed.
  • The Birthday Massacre:
    • The video to the song "Blue" is about one.
    • There's another one in the video for "In the Dark".
  • There's a few of these in the P!nk video "Please Don't Leave Me" starting at 2:22. Notice all the dolls in the audience and then the close up on them. Brr...
  • The video to the song "Clown" by Korn has both creepy dolls and Monster Clowns. Plus a lot of insanity.
    • The MTV special editions for Issues had one of these.
  • The video to the song "He's My Thing" by Babes in Toyland, as well as some of the cover art for their albums.
  • Rasputina's "Gingerbread Coffin". Kids find an old doll and say a black mass around her. Despite the subject matter, neither the music nor the lyrics are at all eerie.
  • The Dresden Dolls have a song called "Coin Operated Boy" while not wholly about a doll, the boy is a life size puppet of sorts that ran by dropping a quarter into its pay slot.
  • The video for Velvet Eden's "..And schism".
  • Elise from Sound Horizon's Märchen is an animated china doll that constantly compels the eponymous Märchen to enact revenge.
  • At least two PVs for Rin and Len's "Trick and Treat" contain creepy dolls. In the second example, Rin and Len turn out to be Miku's old dolls that she threw away in favor of a new Luka doll. At the end of the video, Len rips out her heart.
  • Another Vocaloid example, specifically from the Evillious Chronicles: KAITO's "Heartbeat Clocktower", composed by mothy, is about a clockwork doll covered in burn marks who apparently needs (and inevitably gets) a human heart so that she can keep "living." Also mentioned is a theatre populated by dolls who are the "vessels" of sin.
  • Finnish band "Lordi" have a song called Schizo Doll. Also, their keyboardist Hella acts as a living doll.
  • Kerli's Walking on Air video.
  • The doll family on the album cover of Marilyn Manson's Portrait of an American Family.
  • The artwork within Music for Children by John Zorn shows a lot of creepy dolls, including the one on the original album cover, which was replaced on some copies for being too disturbing. It features a nude female doll with breasts.
  • David Bowie's video for "Love Is Lost" features puppet versions of two past characters: the Thin White Duke and the Pierrot from the "Ashes to Ashes" video. The clown is the less creepy of the two.


  • The Magnus Archives:
    • The first of the strange bin bags in "Thrown Away" is full of detached doll heads.
    • In "Strange Music" the narrator finds in her dead grandfather's loft a trunk full of antique dolls with mouths like those of a ventriloquist's dummy, all but one of which are missing their lower jaws; the one with its jaw intact is a clown doll with a splash of red paint giving it an ugly smile. It seems to be able to escape from the closed trunk. Later she notices another doll, jaw intact, that resembles her ex-boyfriend - who is then found dead with his lower jaw torn off.
  • A few are set up in the The Shining room in the Cool Kids Table game Creepy Town. A giant one that looks like Die appears and kills Stacey near the end.
  • The Adventure Zone: Dust has Uncle Oni, a creepy Bunraku puppet.
  • The Sick Sad World episode "Creepy Stories - It Happened To A Friend Of A Friend" starts with a story about a dancing baby toy Mari had, which Jasmine calls nightmare fuel. It's described as pale, half-naked, and having emotionless eyes. It also seemed to have moved on its own.


    Tabletop Games 
  • The Ravenloft setting is home to doll golems, animated toys which cause uncontrollable laughter with their bite, and 'carrionettes', sentient puppets that can swap minds with their victims.
  • Then there's this little gem, from Exalted:
    The Scripture of the Maiden on the Shelf:
    ...who sat on a child's shelf and watched the entire world.
    For years and years, she did not move.
    "Survival is control," she said.
  • Magic: The Gathering has the Stuffy Doll, which is apparently a living Voodoo Doll. Which is completely indestructible. It's a reference to the doll's appearance in (and survival from) previous cards, starting with Black Vise and The Rack.
  • Promethean: The Created has the Galateids, Prometheans who appear to be extremely beautiful and perfect. When their Deformities are revealed under the right circumstances, they resemble dolls or mannequins with glass eyes, plastic skin, and fake hair, reflecting their artificial nature.
  • Betrayal at House on the Hill has an event called "Creepy Puppet". The description: "You see one of those dolls that gives you the willies. It jumps at you with a tiny spear."
    • The Legacy version has a Porcelain Doll omen that counts as a ghost on the doll owner's turn and the chapter that introduces that omen has two possible creepy doll-themed haunts: either the traitor is summoning an army of singing dolls to kill everyone else or the traitor wants to feed a hungry doll the blood of others until it grows big enough to burrow underneath the house.
  • Pathfinder has Soulbound Dolls, crafted from a fragment of a creature's soul—either donated, or taken forcefully. In theory, they're Empty Shells, but in practice they retain some of the donor's personality, and it's not predictable which personality traits will appear. On top of that, they're the only construct that's vulnerable to mind-affecting effects, so even if they start out okay, they could still become Brainwashed and Crazy later.
    • The short story included with the first adventure in the Strange Aeons adventure path features soulbound dolls constructed by a dollmaker who had become a cultist of Nyarlathotep (now driven half-mad with guilt for what he's done). The narrator, who owned one such doll as a child, has a flashback to a repressed memory where it drove her to dismember a stray cat with a butcher's cleaver.
    • Halflings have an alternate racial trait named "Creepy Doll" that gives a halfling character a pale skin tone and glassy eyes. It removes size penalties on Intimidate checks made on larger humanoids and gives the ability to pass for a porcelain doll when sitting idle and thus use Stealth with no need of cover or concealment.
  • Ghostrick Doll, a member of the Ghostrick archetype in Yu-Gi-Oh! is based on a Bisque Doll, a doll made mostly or entirely of bisque porcelain and characterized by their highly realistic features and skin-like texture. These dolls were at their most popular in the late 1800's, and are now considered highly valuable among collectors. In addition, due to their eerie wide-eyed stares and historical nature these dolls have recently become pop culture fixtures in horror movies– often related to the ghosts of young girls.

  • Ride the Cyclone has the trope pull double duty for the character of Jane Doe, a teenager who lost her head (and all her memories of her life on Earth) in a roller coaster accident. Arriving in the afterlife, Jane carries a headless "dolly" dressed in stuffy, victorian clothing. The makeup used on the actress playing Jane Doe is meant to evoke a creepy doll (with the implication being that Jane Doe is using the doll's head a replacement for her own lost skull). Most productions include porcelain-pale skin, blacked-out contact lenses, and a pale blonde wig styled in tight ringlets.

    Video Games 
  • The first boss of Stage 2 in Night Slashers is a duo consisting of an old man with a bell and a marionette who prevent the heroes from following the carriage. The marionette walks-or-dances around as if on strings, even though there are none. He sometimes throws his head to attack, laughs maniacally, and may temporarily fall apart if hit with a special move. He burns up upon defeat.
  • Dead Realm: This is one of the ghosts you can play as in the game.
  • Alma carries a doll around with her in First Encounter Assault Recon. The effect is not really all that childish.
    • Especially since she's covered in blood up to her ankles and typically surrounded by hellfire.
  • In The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask, there's a little girl in Ikana Valley whose father lives in the wardrobe in the basement because he's slowly turning into a Gibdo. Later on, if you look inside his wardrobe it's revealed that he had a mummified little doll resting in the corner.
    • The skull kid slightly fits this... especially with how Majora plays with him.
    • In Wind Waker, when you meet the Great Fairy Queen, she takes the appearance of a child, yet holds a doll that looks like a miniature Great Fairy, all of which look like grown adult women. The effect is rather unsettling, a fact not helped by the background music.
  • The Haunted House you explore in Pacify has plenty of these lying around. Sometimes, they'll come to life.
  • Wario World: Brawl Doll, the boss of Horror Manor, is an evil baby doll with a putto-like appearance, having big blue eyes, angel wings, and a star-shaped halo. In the cutscene before the battle, it does an Exorcist Head while laughing sinisterly.
  • Witchkin: One of the titular characters is an eyeless, hairless doll in a tattered dress.
  • Fatal Frame cannot help but place them in every title.
    • The first game had a room filled with long haired, creepy dolls with a little ghost girl wanting to 'play' with you.
    • Fatal Frame 2 took that to the next level with the Dollmaker and the lifesized doll of his dead daughter, who was promptly possessed by an evil spirit and convinced her sister to murder her father. Now the pair of them wander around as shuffling ghosts, while the father controls his dolls and convinces them to kill you.
    • Fatal Frame 3. The attacking handmaiden ghosts who look like little geisha dolls that will kill you with their hammers and ghostly tricks each have their own room. Their choice of decoration? Dolls. A whole ton of them. Skewered on the walls.
      • At the very beginning of the game, there's a doll in the mansion displayed in a nook. You can look at it through your camera; as you slowly walk towards it, will look up at you.
      • A doll in Miku's room will grow hair throughout the game.
    • Fatal Frame 4 has two examples:
    • Fatal Frame V has a shrine dedicated to them. And some of them attack you. And Shiragiku summons dolls that limps toward you to attack you when you battle her.
  • Condemned 2: Bloodshot features an abandoned factory full of creepy baby dolls that run at you and explode. You can also pick them up and throw them like grenades. Ethan even pulls a pin out when he does this.
  • Calcobrina from Final Fantasy IV.
  • Silent Hill seems to LOVE these:
    • Silent Hill 2 features the Mannequin, a monster made of two shiny plasticine women's lower torsos stacked on top of one another. Possibly symbolizes the main character's objectification of women.
    • Silent Hill: 0rigins features Ariel, appearing as a doll that can either break your neck in the air... or run around on its hands to kill you.
    • Silent Hill: Homecoming, however, cranks it up to Eleven with Scarlet. A giant, elongated mannequin with porcelain armor that, when blown off, reveals that there's inexplicably flesh and muscle beneath it. Add this to the fact that it came out of a pool of Doc Finch's blood and the One-Woman Wail creating Soundtrack Dissonance... it is EASILY the most frightening monster in the entire game. Finding out WHAT and WHY Scarlett is doesn't help. Not that you probably hadn't figured it out by now anyway...
    • Silent Hill 3 also contains a slightly more traditional example in the form of the dolls Stanley leaves behind for Heather in the hospital. The protagonist originally thinks of the doll as another child's, and is disgusted when she finds out it's supposed to be for her. On his last journal entry, the doll is torn to pieces. Creepy...
      • And there's the dolls in the Otherworld Hillside Center. One's in a wheelchair, while another- only a few feet away- is held by a humanoid...thing, suspended over a hole. Symbolism?
    • Silent Hill 4 has Walter Sullivan's doll, which if picked up and placed in the box, haunts Henry's room permanently (unless you remove it from the box and carry it around with you for the rest of the game), making it impossible to get the best ending.
    • The Robbie the Rabbit Doll pointing at YOU when you look in a certain hole.
    • Silent Hill: Downpour has the aptly-named Dolls, which resemble (very creepy-looking) sex dolls. They summon shadows to attack Murphy, preferring to stand (almost) stone-still while they do so.
  • Vagrant Story's Quicksilver and Shrieker enemies.
  • Clock Tower: The First Fear has a room full of beat up dolls. One gives you a key. After that, another will attack you.
  • If you're not careful whilst downloading custom content for The Sims 3, you can unknowingly download a doll that will slow down your game loading times and crash your games.
    • That's probably Dexter The Bear, a stuffed Bear that gives you the ability to kill other sims with either a knife, a poker, or a hammer. The hammer lets you kill toddlers too, which gives way to the creepy toddler behaviors. That is, when Dexter worked properly and didn't crash the game.
    • In summer 2010 there was also a custom content girl doll in a dress that attached itself like a virus to any uploaded content you created. It got onto the official exchange and caused a number of crashed games before people found it.
    • For actual creepy dolls rather then bugged ones, we have the Imaginary Friend doll from the Generations expansion pack, which is generally agreed to be extremely creepy, and is delivered in the mail most of the time when your sims have a baby, and to make matters worse, if you let your toddlers play with the thing it will evolve into an animated thing with a creepy walk that follows your sim kids around everywhere. Also, the developers went out of their way to make the thing hard to get rid of, you can't even blow it up in an explosion.
    • Your child will constantly play with it, ignoring their needs and their homework, along with constantly being interrupted when you tell them to do something. On top of that, if you take the doll away and leave it out, it will act like a gnome, which disappear in the night to show up elsewhere, often turning on TVs and stereos, or just poofing up beside a bed to stare at the occupant.
  • Each game in the Shadow Hearts series has a dungeon called the Doll House, which is the home to a demonically possessed doll. In the first game, the spirit possessing the doll is not quite as scary as the doll itself, which sits in the middle of an extremely disturbing room, on a rocking horse, creaking slowly back and forth. In the second game, there's a similar dungeon, meant for a character who has a doll of his own. Not quite as scary as the first, but still quite a bit disturbing, given that there are dolls all over the house watching you... In the third game, there are dolls all over the place, and the scariness comes from what you have to do to them - plucking out their eyes.
  • The PC kid's game I Spy: Spooky Mansion has a wardrobe filled with nothing but dusty, antique dolls as a level where you were told a poem (like in the books) to find things. In the game, when you found an object you were told to find, the object would become animated and then the object was checked off the list. In the wardrobe level, nearly every object you were told to find was a doll, and when found would move and talk with high-pitched voices and squeaky joints. Very creepy to a kid playing the game.
  • Gaia Online has a "joint puppet" feature for avatars to use. If that doesn't fit this trope, then the livid-patchy "dead doll" option will.
  • Touhou Project's gotten in on this trope with a few character designs.
    • Alice Margatroid has a veritable army of dolls at her disposal, otherwise-innocuous toys armed with swords, lances or straight razors, some of which are even packed with gunpowder. Fan works usually portray them as cute, but with spellcard names like "Eerily Luminous Shanghai Dolls" and "Hanged Hourai Dolls" it's easy to go the other route. Alice herself is often described as slightly creepy, what with her habit of holding one-sided conversations with her dolls, and then there's the fan art that gives her doll joints or otherwise implies that she's just a larger puppet...
    • Medicine Melancholy, an abandoned doll left in a field of poisonous flowers for so long that she became a youkai, is one of the creepiest characters in the series. She has a murderous grudge against humanity, rambles to herself about her toxins' effects, and talks to her victims about how wonderful it is that they'll soon die surrounded by poison. Simply touching Medicine is dangerous, she can manipulate her poisons to control her victims, and she even attempted to poison the Human Village on one occasion. Other than all that, she looks like a cute little girl.
    • The curse goddess Hina Kagiyama is a subversion - she collects Nagashi-bina dolls, whose purpose is to be filled with the misfortune of the user, but she does this to drain away that misfortune and ensure that it doesn't affect anyone else. She's actually pretty friendly, it's just that she's soaked up so much misfortune this way that simply being around her can be dangerous.
  • There is a mod in Unreal Tournament called Unreal4Ever, which has a doll for a weapon. When used, the doll skips around a map making doll-like noises, until an unlucky victim comes too close and detonates the doll, causing a nuclear explosion. Just imagine being chased by a seemingly harmless doll that's really out to kill you.
  • Tails Doll, from Sonic R. Can you feel the sunshine? The devs have acknowledged this.
  • The Castlevania series has an animate man-size marionette with long-blond hair. It's lying around idly until the hero comes nearby. Then it giggles, twists its neck in a circle, and floats through the air with unnatural movement as if manipulated by invisible strings. There are also variations that emit electricity, said to be possessed by the ghosts of prisoners that died in the electric chair. Chronicle has small dolls, the walking clowns and hover dolls, though you might find the voiced hover dolls adorable.
  • In Harvest Moon: A Wonderful Life, your character has the option of buying a teddy bear for your child in chapter three. And then it turns out that the fucking thing blinks and moves and your child will hold conversations with it.
    • Marionetta, the third boss or more specifically the guardian of Obsidian Mansion in Rune Factory 4 has a description of “An old doll. Spookier than you can imagine” for a reason.
  • Used very subtly in Half-Life 2. They're never in plain sight, but if you go out of your way to poke through the trash or explore the abandoned playgrounds, you can find normal children's dolls... in ruins. Missing an arm. Missing an EYE. Covered in something black. Very creepy.
  • One of the hidden-object search scenes in Return to Ravenhearst consists of dozens of creepy, damaged dolls arranged on shelves.
    • In the sequel, Escape From Ravenhearst, you interact with dozens of creepy animatronic mannequins.
  • Onimusha
    • Genma Onimusha has Ayame, a demonic, Ax-Crazy Genma-doll which will randomly appear in the castle and will try to slash you to pieces with her gigantic claws.
    • Fiendish puppets and dolls will appear hidden in some chests in Onimusha 3: Demon Siege. They'll leave behind the object they're guarding when defeated.
  • A creepy doll whose eyes move is part of the antique shop's decor in The Lost Crown: A Ghost-Hunting Adventure. Not exactly a doll, but this game also features a spooky, headless dressmaker's dummy that inexplicably appears in the bathroom each night, looking like an intruder in the dark.
  • Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots has the thoroughly creepy Psycho Mantis and Sorrow dolls as unlockable weapons.
  • Kingdom of Loathing has the Misfit Doll accessory. A normal doll with black hair, white skin, and hollow eye sockets. Adds Spooky damage (which is apparently generated by frightening the opponent) to attacks. Also has the Evil Teddy Bear and Cymbal Playing Monkey familiar and Killer Rag Doll and Creepy Marionette off-hands.
    • You can get a creepy clockwork monkey as a combat item. The item description is in the quotes page.
    • An update to Spookyraven Manor in May 2014 added a "creepy doll" monster to the Manor, as well as the quest reward "Elizabeth's Dollie".
  • There's a junk item in Forum Warz, the Haunted Doll, but it doesn't really do anything... At least, nobody's seen it do anything.
    • You can also wind up stuck with a Burnt Doll by pissing off a certain NPC.
  • Resident Evil had a few moments with creepy dolls:
    • First with Code Veronica (and its remake level in Darkside Chronicles) in which you travel through a house of dolls, filled with Zombies, Bats, Bandersnatches, oh and little dolls and a giant suspended doll, all of which are modeled after the games main antagonist Alexia Ashford. Plus there is also the music, and gets its worse in the games remake in Darkside Chronicles.
    • And there was also the Resident Evil 4 prototype, which featured Leon going through a castle owned by Umbrella (at least we assume) that is... weirdly enough haunted with hook-wielding ghost demonic dolls and tentacles in a black mist. It was as if he made a wrong turn at Raccoon City and went to Silent Hill. (Damn it would have been scary.)
  • Haunting Ground has a room full of it, and is, in fact, a puzzle. Doing this incorrectly will prompt spikes coming out of the dolls to give you a game over.
  • Ōkami has some of these in the Sunken Ship dungeon. They aren't exactly creepy on their own right, but combined with the surroundings, occasional chest-monsters and the sound world that at first makes them seem like they're laughing at you, we can't really blame you if you feel like Power Slashing them, just to be sure.
  • One made to look like the game's protagonist spooks the player out near the beginning of Rule of Rose. It makes an appearance later on, but its plot-significance is small.
    • What makes this doll even creepier is the fact that it was created specifically to be slapped around and beaten by a character that hates Jennifer that much.
    • The Rose Princess also appears to be one. It turns out that was just a stand-in for when the real one was ill.
  • Torned out and dirty dolls in Epic Mickey, which you can do a spinning attack on for restorative items. They're even creepier than an eyeless Dumbo ride.
  • The second battle in EarthBound Beginnings is against a possessed doll which one of your sisters owns.
  • These are encountered as late-game enemies in Alice: Madness Returns. They are damn creepy, to say the least. They represent the children that Dr. Bumby has brainwashed and broken into child prostitutes.
  • In Monster Girl Quest, Gnome can be seen holding a mud doll, a marionette-like doll with hollow eye sockets. She created many of them, animated, to ease boredom. Gnome summons them during her battle to test Luka's strength. They're even creepier if you lose, for Gnome will have these dolls repeatedly rape Luka. There is also a Cursed Doll in the Haunted House sidequest.
  • Ib not only has a creepy doll that follows Garry around and keeps on asking him to play with it in one scene, but also an entire room of creepy dolls that lock him inside and force him to "play" with them to find the key to the door before a giant version of them finishes crawling through the window. If he fails to find the key in time, Bad Things happen.
  • Pokémon has Banette. Its Dex entry states that it was a doll that came to life as a Pokémon after being abandoned by a child. Mr. Mime also counts, due to its heavily puppet-like design and intentionally invoking the Uncanny Valley, and being part Fairy-type.
  • Calling has a room filled with bisque dolls. You not only get scared by those but you also get into that same room later in the game.
  • Ambridge Mansion, an indie horror game, has a room full of dolls in it. In the second game, the dolls even lock you inside the room for a little while when they're just there staring at you. It's creepy as hell.
  • The Puppetshow series is made of creepy dolls. Creepy mechanical dolls ranging from naked sexless automatons to a baby doll head mounted on a giant spider body.
  • Near the beginning of Strange Cases 4: The Faces of Vengeance the main character discovers a doll of herself hanging - literally - inside an old fridge. When touched, the head falls off. Also, since the game is set in an abandoned mall, it gets a lot of mileage out of old mannequins in various disturbing poses. After solving a particular puzzle involving three child mannequins and a plastic birthday cake, she comments "It looks like someone is turning seven - if he was human and not a creepy doll."
  • Howard the Bear in Forget Me Not Annie.
  • OFF has the Secretaries,, who resemble baby dolls. They're huge, they hit crazy hard (with math equations, oddly enough), they're creepy, they show up in zones devoid of all life, and they get even uglier as the game goes on. They're also good for EXP grinding, if you're careful.
  • Twilight Town in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door is populated by Twilighters, green creatures resembling shadowy dolls with visible stitching and glowing yellow eyes. Fortunately it's the game's Halloween Town and they're the ones in need of rescuing.
  • Soul Hackers features the shop "Robot Haus" which normally sells these. It is run by a creepy old lady who talks as if the dolls were alive, and when you show her the GUNP, she sells suspicious items to you such as water that attracts demons and molotov cocktails.
  • Illbleed has Cutie Marie/Cuty Mary, a cute little doll who challenges you to a series of deadly games in the "Killer Department Store" level.
  • Device 6 has many creepy dolls, some more important then others.
  • Donkey Kong 64 features the Monster Clown jack-in-the-box Mad Jack as the third boss, although for many he's more remembered as That One Boss for the frustrations due to the camera angles than for being scary (unless the player was younger than about 7 or 8).
  • The vision of a doll which an evil toymaker, Henry Stauf sees and recreates, is what kicks off the storyline of The 7th Guest.
  • In The Matrix: Path of Neo there's creepy animatronic sex-dolls in Club Hell, they giggle when a mook pushes them onto an electrified table.
  • The game menu in Mishap: An Accidental Haunting consists of signs held up by extremely creepy dolls in various states of disrepair. Similar dolls appear throughout the hidden object scenes.
  • Dolly from Voodoo Vince.
  • Maze: Subject 360 has a number of them, including a disturbing mechanical baby doll you have to assemble in order to complete a task and a room full of decrepit mannequins in contorted poses which are intended to represent previous subjects who supposedly escaped the maze.
  • Vivien in Phantasmat 4: The Dread of Oakville has an entire set of shelves of grotesque wooden dolls which can move by themselves.
  • In Haunt The House, one object that can be possessed is a doll. When the player character, a ghost, possesses it, the player can make it shriek.
  • There are plenty of dolls lying around the house in Neverending Nightmares, where most of them are cracked or have creepy facial expressions. In a few blink-or-you-miss-it moments, they sometimes wink at the player. Ultimately, they're harmless unless you're on the Wayward Dreamer path, where they will disembowel you the chance they get.
  • BitmapWorld has a storyline that parodies the Jonathan Coulton song, but then swerves off into Edgar Allan Poe territory. It begins here.
  • The eponymous Talking Tattletail doll from Tattletail seems like an annoying but harmless Furby knock-off that the Kid Hero can't wait until Christmas to open. Then it starts getting out of the box on its own, and other weird things start to happen. Then you meet Mama Tattletail, who doesn't like to see its child upset...
  • Emily Wants To Play has Emily's "friends", each with a different mechanic: Kiki is a Japanese porcelain doll who will kill you unless you look right at her, Mr. Tatters is a Monster Clown doll who will kill you if you move while he's looking at you, and Chester is a Demonic Dummy who will kill you if you linger in the same room as him for too long.
  • Cataclysm: Dark Days Ahead has talking dolls as items. They're not much use except for taking their batteries or disassembling them for electronic components. Most of the dolls, when activated, say cute doll things, but they have a small chance of being creepy dolls that say things such as "Go kill yourself!", "Die for me!", or "Do you really need that much honey?".
  • One of the treasures in Pikmin 2 is the head of a creepy baby doll called "The Silencer". In the Japanese version it was worth 666 Pokos (changed to 670 in the international releases) and its eyelids blink if it's moved around.
  • In Kingdom Hearts III, several dolls in Toy Box find themselves possessed by Heartless. The most noticeable cases are Angelic Amber, a goth girl doll who becomes a boss upon being possessed, and Buzz Lightyear, who was possessed on Young Xehanort's orders.
  • A heroic version of this is in Boogeyman 2. It spends the game sitting unmovingly in its perpetually-rocking chair, and each night it warns you of the approaching boogeyman.
  • At one point in BoxxyQuest: The Gathering Storm, you discover an old abandoned inn that has an attic room filled with broken sex dolls. They’re harmless until you loot the nearby treasure chest, at which point they start giggling and attack. If you lose the battle, then Catie is transformed into one of them.
  • In Zombies Ate My Neighbors, one of the recurring enemies is Tommy the Evil Doll. These little terrors pop out of crates with a spine-tingling "MWHA HA HA HA HA HA!" Then they chase you while throwing axes. Even once they have burst into flames, they still chase you. And they never stop respawning.
  • Shut Eye: This is one of the toys that stalks you each night. It usually starts appearing by the door.
  • String Tyrant has life sized versions these as the most common enemy type.
  • The attic of Boo Manor in Hamtaro: Ham-Ham Heartbreak is filled with dolls with big staring eyes. Bijou thinks they're creepy and the mood isn't exactly lifted when it turns out that Spat is hiding among them while pretending to be a doll.
  • In episode 1 of Song Of Horror, the final leg of the game involves a puzzle of a dollhouse with five dolls that need to be placed in the correct rooms. Four of them are normal toys, but the fifth is a hideous gangly ball of rags in a vaguely humanoid shape found clogging a toilet like someone was desperate to get rid of it. The second part of the puzzle applies this to all of the dolls: in the equivalent rooms of the mansion where you put the dolls in the dollhouse, desiccated corpses appear, and the room where the ugly doll was placed is taken by the Presence, which will instakill you if you try to enter.
  • Sophies Guardian: The enemies in the game are a whole host of creepy-looking broken dolls that the Player Character needs to shoot with the two guns it wields.
  • The Doll Shop: The dolls themselves. Although they are quite pretty, there's also something unsettling about them, and as well about how seriously the doll maker himself takes them.
  • The 2010 remake of Splatterhouse has the boss of Phase 2, aptly titled "The Doll that Bled". This doll has the both the powers of telekinesis and the ability to form fleshy masses of tentacles. It combines these abilities in its boss fight to create a massive golem out of flesh and furniture, which it uses as an armored shell while fighting Rick.

    Visual Novels 
  • The Spirit Hunter series has two dolls based on well-known urban legends, namely those of Mary-san and Okiku, though the latter is a much more liberal take on the respective urban legend than the former:
    • Death Mark has Mary, a human-sized talking doll that belonged to the late Saya Kujou. She has a habit of startling those who meet her for the first time, though fortunately she's on the protagonist's side. Or not; she's actually the Big Bad who feeds on the pain and despair of her victims.
    • Spirit Hunter: NG:
      • Akira realises that Big Bad Kakuya is a doll due to her ethereal appearance and her tendency to speak without moving her mouth, which just highlights her Lack of Empathy and general inhumanness.
      • A chilling trio appear in the Screaming Author case. When Akira returns there the second night, he finds life-sized dolls wearing masks and posed like humans. Each of them represent the tortured victims of the house owner, and Akira must figure out how to pacify them so that they can move on and he can retrieve their masks. It's later revealed that Yakumo turned the girls into dolls in order to offer them up to Kakuya, appeasing her for another ten years.
      • One of the toys collected in the Demon Tsukuyomi case is a girlish doll with a chilling, high-pitched laugh.

  • Silent Hill: Promise has a terrifying kewpie doll.
  • Inverted in The Order of the Stick, where Goth undead-phile Tsukiko keeps a doll of Xykon (who is creepy) in her bedroom. The doll, in contrast to the actual Xykon, is a cuddly plush toy.
  • In Frankie and Stein, there's SUTURE tm, this little doll "stitched together out of love, respect for your elders, and the remains of other stuffed toys."
  • Homestuck
    • The Smuppets, made and owned by Bro. They are not objectively ugly or disturbing, but Dave treats them that way. Bro uses them to make "video content" for his websites — in other words, niche pornography for people with a puppet Fetish. In light of this, Dave's revulsion is understandable.
    • Lil' Cal, a Demonic Dummy, is also owned by Bro. His creepy, jarring, glass-eyed stare is bad enough. What's worse is that he seems to move around when Dave turns his back.
    • The Squiddles are among Jade's toys. They are plush, smiling, tentacled friends. It is implied that their creation was inspired by the Horrorterrors, Dream Walkers that exert an unconscious influence on humanity: the cute Squiddles are the softened avatars of Eldritch Abominations. It is easy to agree with fans who always found them creepy.
    • The Manthro Chaps, also Jade's. They feature grotesque Furry Reminders (and a Continuity Nod to the author's previous comics). Jade does not mind.
    • The duttle.
      You made a DUTTLE!
      The duttle is weirding you out a little. You believe you will keep your distance from the duttle.
  • Wapsi Square. Tina's muñeca para el Dia de los Muertos looks outright hideous! Its true nature (assuming it is in fact more than a decoration for the Day of the Dead) has yet to be revealed, although given Tina's backstory, it is easy to develop some theories about this.
  • Eerie Cuties has Blair, a girl doll possessed by a male spirit. Rather stupid and very, very perverted one, at that. Though he's annoying rather than creepy and ends up as The Chew Toy.
  • In Minion Comics the protagonists have Tur-Tor - a stuffed turtle with drugged-out eyes that plays tapes of gangster rap songs about children committing domestic violence.
  • Solstice Twins. During Kiri's first nightmare, she runs through a hallway with a few of them staring at her.[1]
  • Hetty, Reynardine's "friend" in Gunnerkrigg Court, who like him, seems to be some kind of spirit or demon trapped in an object.
  • In Not a Villain, Bloody Mary uses a pair of them in her special attack.

    Web Original 
  • Very Creepy Doll Commercial From The 60's and Extremely Creepy Doll Commercial
  • Open Blue v2 had Vice-Amiral Swasou, who owned a lot of creepy dolls. Even creepier is the fact that they appear to go places when nobody's looking.
  • Fred Finds A Creepy Doll: an officially licensed Fred doll, which he thinks is a Voodoo Doll of him. And then it starts talking...
  • In Marble Hornets, the Slender Man doll Jay finds in an abandoned house may or may not count, but the baby doll in totheark's "Indicator" video definitely does.
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series, Creepy Child Rebecca has a teddy bear that speaks in a demonic voice, worships Satan, and makes death threats to the other characters.
  • Chad Vader has Baby Cookie who seems to be trying to the creepiest of creepy dolls. She wears nothing but booties and a zorro mask while making her chosen minion play, dance and kill.
  • Any of Salad Fingers three finger puppets can be this. Hubert Cumberdale can become human-sized, gain red eyes, and scream for no apparent reason, as well as randomly turn into a black liquid that burns at the touch. Marjory Stewart-Baxter jealously watches Salad Fingers have a picnic with a little girl through the window. Jeremy Fisher can also become human-sized, stores a weird green fluid in his plugged-up mouth, and can suddenly transform into a second Salad Fingers to get eaten alive by the first.
  • Doctor Steel makes several of these.
  • Desert Bus for Hope had a creepy doll which was actually named Creepy Doll. He also goes by the name Harry.
  • The... odd-looking... figurine from Doom House. It haunts the protagonist by appearing wherever he goes.
  • Toki's new doll The one who owned is looked the similar and was obviously suffering similar to her.
  • Mortasheen has an entire sub-category of monsters based on this, some examples being a ragdoll stuffed with mind-control parasites and teddy bear that manipulates emotion
  • One user's nightmare in Nightmare Beings involved a slimy baby doll on the ceiling with empty black eye sockets and an enormous wide mouth with More Teeth than the Osmond Family.
    • The Nan Dumpster from Luke Harrap's dream in 2018 is a rusty dumpster with arms and legs made from multiple doll limbs, a tongue made from doll hair, and teeth made from giggling doll heads.
  • How to Hero mentions an old doll from the 1830s that leaks black liquid from its eyes as a potential superhero weakness.
  • Buzzfeed Unsolved: Shane and Ryan (along with local BuzzFeed reporter Pepe) attempted to spend the night on Isle of the Dolls in Mexico.
  • SCP Foundation contains a number of anomalous dolls:
    • SCP-693 is a set of string dolls that can "attune" themselves to a human and start imitating their movements and speech. However, the dolls will eventually begin tormenting their "owner" (the person who did the attuning) by misrepresenting the actions of whoever they are attuned to.
    • SCP-707 is a matryoshka doll that disassembles you.
  • YouTuber Grav3yardgirl collects creepy antique dolls, but one case, an eerily humanlike cloth doll she dubbed Robertina in reference to Robert the Doll, seemed to be haunted, giving her extreme anxiety and having a history of returns. It wound up in a creepy museum after she too gave it up, and it probably doesn't help that it was theorized to be a stand-in for a deceased child, wearing their clothes.

    Western Animation 
  • A few of these appeared in certain Rugrats episodes. Leading the list is Mr. Friend, a glitchy prototype doll Stu made in the episode "The Mysterious Mr. Friend", who couples this with Monster Clown.
  • The animated short Alma has a little girl find a whole toyshop of creepy dolls including one that looks just like her. Then she becomes that doll by touching it and the shop sets up for its next victim
  • Breach of Generator Rex collects creepy dolls, among other things.
  • In The Grim Adventures of Billy & Mandy Christmas Special, in the room full of defective equipment there is "a creepy doll whose eyes follow you around the room." After it's introduced its eyes fall out and roll across the floor.
  • Yoki the Trash Talk spewing doll from Jimmy Two-Shoes.
  • Played for laughs in a Halloween special of Regular Show where Pops tells a scary story involving a doll named Percy.
  • Again played for laughs in an episode of Aqua Teen Hunger Force with a doll that repeats over and over the word 'KILL'.
    • The same episode has another doll that repeats 'DIE'. When the two dolls meet, things get weird...
  • Baby Button Eyes in The Simpsons.
    Lenny: Baby Button Eyes! What are you doing possessed at this hour?
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: The puppeteer's puppets from "Inspiration Manifestation", or at least when he manipulates them to shun Rarity.
  • Strange Hill High: In "Mitchell Juniour", the kids are given electronic baby dolls to look after for their Egg Sitting assignment. Mitchell gets an older model which turns out to be demonically possessed. Mitchell eventually takes a liking to the doll in the end, because the doll saves Mitchell, Becky, and Templeton from the deadly garbage crusher after the three jam a gigantic pencil owned by a character from Season 2 onto the two walls of the crusher, allowing Mitchell Junior to shut off the machine and save them, but crushing himself in the process.
  • In the SpongeBob SquarePants episode "Sanitation Insanity", one of the junk items that SpongeBob and Squidward find is a discarded doll that tells Squidward it wants to destroy him.
  • In The Amazing World of Gumball episode "The Shippening", one of the items that the police find while raiding the Awesome Store is a singing doll that possesses an officer when its string is pulled.

    Real Life 
  • Robert the Haunted Doll is a doll on display at the Fort East Martello Museum. It is the former doll of painter and author Robert Eugene Otto. When he was a child, Otto was given the doll as a gift from a servant who, according to legend, used black magic to curse it. Later research by the museum, however, contradicted this with the belief Robert was purchased as a birthday gift by Eugene's grandfather in Germany. However, there doesn't seem to be much to indicate whether he was bought or a custom order. As such legend now wonders if he came "haunted" or was made "haunted" because he was special to Gene. Through the years, family members reported hearing Otto speaking to the doll, and hearing a strange, inhuman voice answering back. They also reported that the doll seemed, at times, to move. Reports of the doll's activities continued by others even after Gene's death. People who visit the doll where it currently resides sometimes claim the doll moves and that, if they want to photograph it, they need permission first otherwise their cameras don't work.
    • Even worse is the fact that the doll's owner's wife (who hated the everyone else) apparently starting haunting their old house. Robert's old room, to be exact. This Travel Channel clip insinuates that she has no choice in the matter. Oh, also, Robert ages, apparently. His hair's gone white and he's got liver spots now...
  • Related to Robert The Haunted Doll is Annabelle the Haunted Doll., whose story would become the basis of The Conjuring and its spinoff Annabelle. Possibly even more terrifying than the former, this Raggedy Anne doll was first owned by a woman by the name of Donna, whose mother purchased the doll from a hobby store in the 1970s. She and her roommate were cool with having the doll at first... until freaky things started happening in their apartment, where the doll not only supposedly moved on its own, but also wrote messages. When a medium was consulted, she said that the doll was being inhabited by the harmless spirit of a girl named Annabelle who died on the property, and Donna and her roommate felt compassion for the spirit. However, Annabelle the Doll was not what she seemed as she reportedly violently attacked one of Donna's friends. After two incidents, the famous paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren were consulted and eventually came to the conclusion that the doll was being haunted not by the spirit of a little girl, but by a demon. The doll was eventually relocated to the Warren Occult Museum in Moodus, Connecticut, where it is reported that the doll still moves and growls at visitors on occasion from behind its glass case.
  • One thing that can make dolls really creepy in real life is the fact that kids aren't gentle with toys. If you ever see a doll in a kid's playroom, stuffed uncomfortably in a toy box, or in the middle of a toy pile, often getting "crushed" under other, heavier-looking toys, and still having that smile, it becomes a quick way to convince anybody to clean that room. This can even happen with innocent cloth dolls if their fabric has been torn or damaged.
  • How about this commercial for PS3?
  • The Struts fashion doll line. Toy ponies with big come-hither eyes that can be dressed up Barbie-style. No, really.
  • The Doll Face video features a doll face on a jack in the box type contraption that mimics images on the tv screen trying to find the perfect visage for itself. The worst part is the fact that the thing is apparently sentient, and it falls very very deep into the Uncanny Valley once it paints its face with makeup to give it such a healthy glow that it resembles a human face.
    • This might help, although it does increase the tear-jerker quality. If nothing else, the song is amazing.
    • If it makes you feel any better, it is a human actress' face on the doll.
  • When author H. Rider Haggard was a boy, his nanny used to own a creepy doll called "She-who-must-be-obeyed" which she used to get him to behave. This was at least partly the inspiration for his novel She.
  • Surrealist artist Hans Bellmer combined this trope with lolis for maximum creepiness. His dolls inspired the Silent Hill 2 Mannequins. See a Not-Safe-For-Work-Or-Sanity photograph.
    • Allegedly, he developed his "thing" for ball-jointed dolls after meeting his 15-year-old niece. Thankfully he felt his feelings for her weren't appropriate and switched to the "poupee" (puppet) instead. From Bad to Worse after his wife died.
  • It's Baby Laugh'a'Lot!
  • This Youtube user lampshades this trope to its fullest.
  • Some ball-jointed doll owners embrace this to the fullest. Onegreyelephant's doll mods are something between art objects and Eldritch Abominations... and still more than a little cute.
  • Any doll that has a function (most commonly crying) and being given to someone without being warned about it will cause distress and alarm in the unsuspecting recipient.
  • Then there's that ghost story...Dolly one-step, dolly two-step, Dolly's gonna get you...Don't tell me you weren't scared of that as a kid!
  • A lot of people find the Doll Room in House on the Rock to be hard to get through.
  • Aaron Spelling's mansion had a room especially built to house a huge doll collection; unfortunately the kids it was intended for found it to be a little creepy.
  • The marionettes used in the OP of the Chilean Soap Opera "Los Titeres". Brrrrr!
    • The lyrics of the song skyrocket it into scary: "You are not the owner of your life/We are puppets and nothing else/Our threads are Fate/Which moves us at its will"...
      • Not helped by the very Creepy Monotone singing voices and the just as terrifying background music.
  • Clown dolls, invoked by this USPS commercial.
  • Little Miss No-Name
  • Truth in Television moment about these things, it turns out according to one "study" we perceive what is alive and what is inanimate by the look of the face and eyes more then anything else, so now we know the human truth. Dolls are just freaky soulless things!
  • The Japanese toy company Kaiyodo came up with an horrifyingly creepy Woody toy It's so creepy that it's the cover picture for Memetic Molester!
  • "My Buddy, My Buddy...wherever I go, he goes..."
  • The Island of the Dolls (“La Isla de la Munecas”) south of Mexico City. Featuring trees decorated with hundreds of mutilated dolls. It also has a reputation of being haunted
  • Mattel's Saucy doll. The website is appropriate. Look at that face.
  • Deliberately invoked by Imezco with their Living Dead Dolls, and BeGoth's Bleeding Edge dolls-these are dolls that take the idea of Creepy Dolls and run with it. Living Dead Dolls come in coffin-shaped boxes and have dates of death, while the Bleeding Edge dolls are pierced and have odd eyes. Not surprisingly, both of these kinds of dolls are very popular with Goths.
  • The creepy-weird avatar of the mysterious Parent Child Testing Product. Reviewers are still trying to figure out what it does as well as why it's only sold in a 5-pack.
  • A scary Georgian era mechanical puppet found in Portsmouth Dock's museum. quite unnerving.
  • Laughing Sal
  • Porcelain dolls by Marina Bychkova, a Canadian artist of Russian descent, are beautiful beyond any words - and creepy beyond any words, as well. Here's Salome, here are Snow White and her prince (look at Snow White's neck - it's pretty obvious that she is dead) and here is Bychkova's tribute to breast cancer patients - beautiful, scary, heartbreaking (the dolls expression has a bit of sadness about her situation to it) and heartwarming at the same time.
  • Some Japanese dolls can be very creepy-looking. The aforementioned ichimatsu ningyou are the most famous examples, but Iki-ningyou and some Bunraku puppets aren't slouches on this either.
  • Older "talking dolls," especially those made in the 80s. The problem lies in their distorted voices: for example, Talking Pee-Wee Herman has the character's trademark "Secret Word Scream," which sounds more like a bloodcurdling roar. The official Sheriff Woody doll averts this because it uses a state-of-the-art voice chip instead of the old miniature record player.
    • To be more specific: How they (that is, the string-operated ones) normally work is that pulling on the string winds up an internal clock spring, which when released causes a miniature record disc to revolve at a certain speed. Trouble is, they usually play back too fast, resulting in a screechy, garbled voice that you can only avoid by manually holding the string back. Case in point. Made even worse when the dolls start getting on in years, and the sound units start suffering from the usual age-related degradation, which can result in the voice becoming even more distorted or even skipping between different lines.
  • A group of high schoolers in California once reported finding a doll that would make lightbulbs near it explode.
  • Numerous Halloween props and animatronics have been made from this concept. Many of them use an antique aesthetic with cracked skin and missing eyes.
  • Tattered Rags, the brainchild of Jodi Cain, who specializes in creepy rag dolls with many different designs. All of the dolls are made for display and made to order if the customer chooses.
  • Little Apple Dolls is a line of collectable horror dolls about children (almost all girls) who died, usually due to supernatural means.
  • My Friend Cayla became this not necessarily because of any horror stigma (though the Machine Monotone voice is a little unsettling), but due to concerns regarding the digital assistant technology used, as its cloud-based nature and the fact that the doll's Bluetooth stack is insecure (!) made it a subject of criticism from cybersecurity firms and watchdog groups.


Video Example(s):


Chip's "Collection"

Victor and Valentino - Ep 12 [The Collector]: Valentino meets a creepy collector name Chip who offers him a replacement for a valuable coin that his brother, Victor, spent. However in exchange Chip takes Victor for himself. Valentino goes back to the shop to cancel the deal, but finds, not only his brother turned into a doll, but he wasn't the only one that has made a bad deal with Chip.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (2 votes)

Example of:

Main / CreepyDoll

Media sources:

Main / CreepyDoll