Follow TV Tropes

Following

Creepy High-Pitched Voice

Go To

""Later," said a second voice. This too belonged to a man, but it was strangely high-pitched, and cold as a sudden blast of icy wind. Something about that voice made the sparse hairs on the back of Frank's neck stand up."

The inverse of Evil Sounds Deep. Just as characters with unnaturally deep voices can sound scary, so can characters with unnaturally high voices. May be combined with Evil Sounds Raspy for a very shrill, unpleasant sounding voice.

As noted on Evil Sounds Deep, deep voices are usually seen as attractive, which can lend itself well to villainous characters. This has the opposite effect, by making villains sound sickly and grotesque. This works especially well when the heroes are Badass Baritones with more "manly" voices.

It should be noted that, unlike Evil Sounds Deep, which is usually just plain intimidating, this trope can be used to make villains sound creepy or comical... or both.

Also note that for the most part, this trope does not include evil women or children because they usually do have higher voices. However, a villainess or Creepy Child could count if their voice is exceptionally high, especially considering that villainesses sometimes have a Contralto of Danger voice.

Often associated with the Monster Clown, the Mad Scientist, The Imp, and other creepy characters. Can also apply to Sissy Villains and the like, especially when Eunuchs Are Evil.

Related to Helium Speech. May overlap with Vocal Dissonance, Giggling Villain, and Soft-Spoken Sadist.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • In Dragon Ball Super, Goku Black is a sadistic, sociopathic, mass-murderer and the Evil Twin to Goku, who shares his voice actress and the same high-pitched voice as his good counterpart, albeit in a lower register.
  • Yami Bakura from Yu-Gi-Oh! is voiced by a woman in the Japanese version despite looking like a teenage boy, which creates an impish, Creepy Child effect and an odd juxtaposition with his rude speech patterns. He also giggles.

    Film - Animated 
  • The Nightmare Before Christmas:
    • Jack Skellington, who is regarded as the Pumpkin King and the scariest of all the monsters, has a tenor voice. Although he sometimes lowers his voice when he's trying to be intimidating, he is also prone to high-pitched Evil Laughs, cementing him as a Horrifying Hero.
    • As you would expect from a creepy clown, the Clown with the Tear-Away Face has a very screechy voice.
  • King Candy from Wreck-It Ralph has a goofy high-pitched voice complete with a lisp, which helps his image as a Sissy Villain and a comical Expy of Ed Wynn's performance as the Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland. He keeps this voice even as we start to learn that he's not as friendly as seems. His true form as the psychopathic Green-Eyed Monster Turbo has an almost identical voice, minus the lisp, which serves as an early hint that Candy is Turbo when we first hear Turbo's voice in a flashback sequence. And his voice gets even more terrifying in the climax, when he starts glitching between his forms as King Candy and Turbo, heavily distorting his voice.

    Film - Live-Action 

    Literature 
  • Harry Potter:
    • The wicked Voldemort is described as having a high-pitched voice.
    • Dolores Umbridge is described as having a very high-pitched, girlish voice that grates on Harry's nerves. She turns out to be one of the most vile characters across the series.
  • The orc Grishnakh from Lord of the Rings is described as having a voice that is high yet still menacing and evil. This is in contrast to fellow orc Ugluk who is more Evil Sounds Deep. This trait is also in the films where Grishnakh's voice is high and raspy, which highlights that he is a nasty piece of work even for an orc.
  • Scourge from Warrior Cats, in addition to being The Napoleon, had a very high-pitched and brittle voice. This made him even creepier as a villain, as he gave off the appearance and sound of a kit, but with the mind of a sociopathic and murderous dictator.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Batman: Cesar Romero's flamboyant, silly portrayal of The Joker was helped greatly by the clownish voice he used for the role.
  • The average Dalek from Doctor Who screams every single word with a shrill monotone. This tips viewers off to the Daleks' inhuman natures immediately, if that wasn't given away by the salt shaker-shaped tanks they live in or by their delightful catchphrase, "Exterminate."
  • Capt. Simcoe, the seething psychopath villain of Turn, has a high-pitched piping voice, to go along with being very tall and having a cold stare. The overall effect is unsettling.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Paul Bearer, in his role as an evil mortician, used a very high-pitched voice, most evident when he said his Catch-Phrase, "Oh, yes!"

    Video Games 

     Web Animation 
  • The Commander of Blue Laser, the enemy fighting force in Cheat Commandos, speaks in an incredibly shrill, high-pitched screech. This also applies to his in-universe voice actor, around whom Crack Stuntman, another actor in the cartoon, seems to feel uncomfortable.

    Web Video 

    Western Animation 

Top