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Foul Fox

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Stu Hopps: You know what? Pretty much all predators, and Zootopia's full of 'em.
Bonnie Hopps: Oh, Stu.
Stu Hopps: And foxes are the worst!
Bonnie Hopps: Actually, your father does have a point there. It's in their biology.

Foxes are clever, and humanity generally respects cleverness. But they also have qualities that earn the ire of many people. They're natural predators to animals like rabbits and mice, which are often associated with innocence and sweetness. They're a menace to poultry farmers, often killing chickens, turkeys and waterfowl. They're an invasive species in certain places that are devastating to wildlife. They're notoriously associated with rabiesnote . And the un-dog-like sounds many species make are the stuff of nightmares.

So it's perhaps unsurprising that foxes are often depicted in a negative light, especially in children's media.

In fiction, it's not uncommon for foxes to be portrayed as sneaky, conniving, and unsavory. Antagonistic foxes will generally be evil geniuses or manipulative bastards. Even foxes who aren't predators get hit with this trope, especially if they are dangerous scavengers. Sometimes, they're mean-spirited tricksters who feign being good-natured. Sometimes, they're treacherous backstabbers who would sell virtually anyone up the river for a chance to get ahead, and other times they're just plain vicious bullies. Occasionally, they'll get portrayed as evilly seductive, sometimes complete with "foxy" wordplay.

Sub-Trope of Predators Are Mean. May overlap with Fantastic Foxes, Asian Fox Spirit, and/or Fox Folk. For other fox stereotypes, see Foxy Vixen and Cunning Like a Fox.

Compare Savage Wolves, Wicked Weasel, Those Wily Coyotes, and Cruel Coyotes.


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  • One The Little Mole short features a hungry fox antagonizing the Mole and the other woodland critters, who paint themselves to bright colors to scare the fox away.
  • In The Snowman Postman, the fox is one of the villains. She tries to trick the naive Snowman, is set on stealing the letter he is carrying, and constantly fights even with her own cronies. Since she has a rather vague idea of what a letter actually is, she starts the whole fuss thinking that, if she hands the Snowman's letter to Father Christmas, the latter will give her a chicken or maybe a duck.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Dakki from Hoshin Engi is an ancient fox spirit who's also a major antagonist, pretending to be innocent but actually being very ruthless and manipulative. She's based on the Chinese consort Daji, who was suspected of being a malevolent fox spirit in disguise.
  • Naruto: The Nine-Tailed Demon-Fox is a skyscraper-sized Kitsune who spends most of the series as Naruto's Enemy Within, having been sealed inside him while rampaging through the Hidden Village of Konoha. Towards the end of the series, he undergoes a Heel–Face Turn and goes from being Naruto's Superpowered Evil Side to providing his Golden Super Mode.
  • Seymour "The Big" Cheese from Samurai Pizza Cats is a fox named Kitsunezuka Ko'on in the original Japanese version of the show (the English dub makes him a rat instead despite not changing his design at all). He's also the main antagonist and an Evil Chancellor who regularly plots to overthrow the Emperor.
  • Ushio and Tora: Hakumen no Mono is a colossal nine-tailed fox that is Made of Evil and seeks to spread as much chaos and destruction as possible.

    Comic Books 
  • Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie Comics) has Fiona Fox. As a child, Fiona was imprisoned by Dr. Robotnik during his rise to power as a result of being abandoned by Sonic and Mighty the Armadillo. Understandably, she developed a grudge against the two for what happened, and over time, her grudge worsened the darker aspects of her personality, until eventually, she fell from grace entirely and became an outright villain. Fiona has a history of mild illegal activity, including robbery. She's also extremely clever and has an acute memory. However, she is clearly reluctant to talk about her past. When she chose to follow a darker path in life (likely due to her past), she developed a relationship with Scourge, Sonic's Evil Counterpart, preferring him to the virtuous real deal.
  • Jizonobu in Usagi Yojimbo was once a kindhearted priest. Once. Then he sold his soul to dark gods to heal a sick girl out of desperation, since the girl's father threatened to kill everyone in his temple if he didn't. They turned him into Jei, and everyone in the temple as well as the girl's father died anyway (save the girl, Keifumi, and Priest Hama, who was badly wounded).

    Fairy Tales 
  • In Chicken Little, Foxy Loxy is a fox who eats all the birds, usually including the protagonist, all the while pretending he's going to lead them to the king's house.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 

  • Br'er Fox is one of the most frequent antagonists of the Br'er Rabbit stories, whose activities frequently revolve around trying to eat main character Br'er Rabbit.
  • Reynard the Fox: Reynard is a Villain Protagonist whose only real saving grace is that most of his enemies are no better than him.

  • The Adventures of Pinocchio: The Fox, along with his partner-in-crime the cat, is a con artist who pretends to be handicapped to take advantage of people's kindness. Not only that, but the two of them feign kindness to Pinocchio to steal his money and later try to kill him.
  • In Bambi: Friends of the Forest, the book's climax has Thumper being antagonized by a hungry fox. Bambi goads the fox into chasing him to save Thumper. Just when it looks as if the fox is about to catch Bambi, Bambi's father, the Mighty King of the Forest frightens the fox away with his powerful antlers. After the fox flees, the Mighty King tells Bambi that while he is much too young to outrun a fox, he heard from the bluebird about how he did so to save Thumper and is proud of him.
  • The Berenstain Bears: In "Learn About Strangers", Papa reads Sister a book called Silly Goose and Wily Fox. In it, Wily Fox tricks Silly Goose into entering his lair and it ends with him eating her.
  • The Dark is Rising series novel The Grey King: The title character is an extremely evil Lord of the Dark. His minions include the milgwn: huge grey foxes that do his bidding, including slaughtering sheep.
  • Fengshen Yanyi: Daji is a sadistic 1000-year-old huli-jing sent by the goddess Nu Wa to punish King Zhou for his blasphemy towards her, corrupting him into a maniacal tyrant and feeding his darkest side. She has an entire family of equally evil, man-eating fox spirits dwelling in the hollow tomb of Emperor Huang, which can appear as spotless immortals and fairies but reek of death and corpses.
  • A Fly Went By: Subverted. The fox is suspected of wanting to kill the calf, but he turns out to not want to.
  • The Gingerbread Man: A fox tricks the Gingerbread Man into climbing on his nose and then eats him alive.
  • Goosebumps: In "Return to Ghost Camp", the child-killing spirit the Snatcher primarily takes the form of a fox and uses this form when killing its victims.
  • Redwall: Foxes are among the "vermin" species, and almost always play antagonistic roles. They tend to be more into subterfuge than other kinds of vermin are, often having no qualms about betraying their allies or superiors for their own self-gain. The OG example (and arguably the vilest one) is Slagar the Cruel from Mattimeo, who is all the above and a child slaver.
  • In Sam Pig, the unnamed fox is one of the primary antagonists, doing things such as conning the pigs into letting him eat Brock the Badger's dinner.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire: House Florent's sigil is a fox. They're also very ambitious and opportunistic when it comes to increasing their power. They initially support Renly over Stannis in the War of the Five Kings, despite Stannis being their in-law because Renly has the stronger position. When they do go over to Stannis's side, they convert to an Apocalypse Cult that practices human sacrifice. When the Head of the House Alester is arrested for treason, his cousin has no problem turning on him.
  • In The Tale of Jemima Puddle-Duck, it's implied that the "Sandy-Whiskered Gentleman" (shown to be a fox in the illustrations) wants to kill Jemima, stuff her, and eat her for dinner, as well as make her eggs into an omelette.
  • In Warrior Cats foxes often attack the cats and compete with them for prey. This is why calling someone a "fox-heart" is a very bad insult. Because the foxes don't have a language that the narrative translates, the implication is that they're savage beasts.
  • Watership Down has select rabbits from Hazel's warren travel to Efrafa, seeking breeding does. En route, Bigwig detects a fox paralleling their course and decides to misdirect it away from the rabbit party. As it turns out, Bigwig encountered Groundsel and some other rabbits from Efrafa in a wood. The Efrafans were so fixated upon detaining Bigwig that the fox caught them by surprise. It's also mentioned that the defeated Efrafan force, while returning from Watership Down, had their numbers culled by a fox, further loosening their control of the Efrafa warren.
  • The Wonderful Adventures of Nils: Smirre the fox is not a nice guy, especially in the anime, where he's a recurring villain. He frequently tries to eat the geese.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Grimm:
    • Downplayed. Fuchsbau have a reputation amongst the Wesen community for being sly and deceptive, and are commonly found in at least questionable trades. However, all the Fuchsbau to appear have been presented as reasonably sympathetic. With Rosalee Carvert being one of the show's main heroes.
    • Vulpesmyrca are black fox Wesen (and noticeably larger than Fuchsbau), who are renowned as vicious and relentless predators. They commonly work as mercenaries and traditionally prey upon Willaharas (rabbit Wesen) for their feet (which is used illegally as a fertility treatment).
  • The Mighty Boosh has the aptly-named "Crack Fox," a loathsome, drug-addicted fox with hypodermic needles for fingers who has built a house out of trash bags and seeks to steal Naboo's shaman juice in order to acquire unlimited power, with which he plans to lead a worldwide rebellion of woodland critters with him as it's leader. Played with in that he wasn't always foul: he used to be an aristocratic fox named Jerome who left the country for London in order to check out the club scene there. However, while he had some very good times from this lifestyle, the drugs and expenditure ultimately dragged him down and warped Jerome into the bitter, grotesque creature he is now.

  • CG5: The music video for "Let Me Through" focuses on all the different variants of Foxy the animatronic fox seen throughout the Five Nights at Freddy's series. In the video, all the different Foxys try every means they can think of to get into the security guard's office, presumably to kill him. Nightmare Foxy and Funtime Foxy in particular show No Sympathy Between Mooks, as Nightmare Foxy kills the original Foxy, and Funtime Foxy kills the other Funtime animatronics. In the end, Funtime Foxy is the one who manages to get into the security guard's office. The video ends with the security guard panicking just before Funtime Foxy enters, and we don't know what happens after that.
  • The music video for Disturbed's "The Vengeful One" has one of the programs on the Ominous Television enthralling the family is a pastiche of The Golden Age of Animation. It shows a cartoon fox with a crazed expression running towards the camera, a large mallet in both hands.
  • Neko Case's "Fox Confessor Brings the Flood" is inspired by a Ukrainian folktale about a fox who tricks a wolf into confessing his sins, which the fox then uses against him, the moral being to be wary of those who promise salvation. In the song, Neko confesses to a fox who shames her for what she's done; when she seeks solace from him, he responds that her suffering has no meaning other than to give her something to cry over "when the death of your civilization precedes you". Having lost all faith in everything else, Neko is forced to put up with his taunts just so she has someone to believe in.
  • The German parody rap band The Orsons wrote a song titled "Der Fuchs plant nichts Gutes" (Ger. "The Fox Is Up To No Good") about a nefarious fox that steals guns from a farmer to raid his chicken coop, before escaping across the border in a stolen car.

    Myths & Religion 
  • In Chinese Mythology, Huli-jing are vampiric shape-shifting foxes with up to nine tails, are composed of yin, and need to seduce men to drain their yang.
  • In Japanese Mythology, kitsune are shapeshifting foxes with up to nine tails, and like their Chinese and Korean counterparts, can be malicious predators or seductresses who drain the life-force from their victims. Though unlike their Chinese and Korean counterparts kitsune can actually be benevolent, for instance as emissaries of the god Inari.
  • The Korean kumiho is a multi-tailed fox with a taste for human liver.
  • Foxes play multiple roles in Native American myths, usually more benevolent compared to wolves or coyotes. However, the Iroquois in particular have a story of a fox tricking a hunter into starving himself.
  • In Luke 13:32 from The Bible, Jesus calls Herod Antipas a fox, probably as a way of saying Herod was weak and deceitful.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Zigzagged in Crimestrikers. The two main villains, Vance Coffin and Walter Mastron, are anthro foxes who run an international crime syndicate. However, two of the story's major characters, Walter's Antagonistic Offspring Diana Mastron and her boyfriend Hendrik Alquist, are heroic foxes who are dedicated to stopping them.
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • 1st Edition AD&D supplement Oriental Adventures
    • 4th Edition had a race of fox-like demons called "raavastas" who manipulated rulers and kingdoms by acting as Knowledge Brokers and selectively offering information or informing their rivals, replacing the jackal-like arcanaloths of previous editions. In 5th Edition arcanaloths are back, but the art occasionally depicts them as more fox-like than jackal-like, most notably Shemeshka the Marauder's appearance on the cover of the "Turn of Fortune's Wheel" adventure module.
  • Pathfinder: Nogitsune are Oni who either possess kitsune or form bodies in their image and act as spies and assassins. They have a "Contagious Whisper" ability that acts as a Suggestion spell but the victim can unwittingly spread it to other targets, potentially turning royal courts into bloodbaths.

    Video Games 
  • The only fox in Animal Crossing is Crazy Redd, a shady salesman who runs a black market shop. Although he typically does have some genuinely rare items that can't be obtained anywhere else, they're mixed in with overpriced common items, and from Wild World onwards, paintings and artwork he sells have a high chance of being forgeries.
  • The Fox known as "The Teeth in the Darkness" from Cult of the Lamb. He is a serial killer who eats other animals and devil-like figure. He will give you Holy Talisman fragments in exchange for victims for him to eat. Getting the final talisman fragment from him requires you to sacrifice your mentor figure Ratau. He apparently does this because he sees the lamb as a fellow predator and want to make them more like him. He is implied to be some sort of supernatural being as he can only be contacted in certain places at night and emerges from a pool of darkness.
  • Fate/Grand Order: Koyanskaya of Light/Dark, also known as Tamamo Vitch, is a kitsune and one of the candidates for the Beasts of Humanity. She works for the Crypters, her Light form operates exactly like a black-ops specialist, and states repeatedly that she loathes humans and wants to kill them. Her class, Assassin, reflects that attitude, while her Dark form has traits of her Beast IV:L form.
  • Five Nights at Freddy's:
    • Five Nights at Freddy's: Foxy is an animatronic with a fox suit who's just as dangerous as the other animatronics. Like them, he's hellbent on stuffing the nightguard into a spare animatronic suit.
    • Five Nights at Freddy's 2: Mangle is another fox animatronic, and just like its predecessor Foxy, it seeks to attack and kill the player. Withered Foxy, aka the Foxy that will become the one in FNAF 1, also will leap into the office to kill the player.
    • Five Nights at Freddy's 3: Phantom Foxy is just a hallucination, so he can't kill you, but he will give you a nasty Jump Scare and give Springtrap more time to get to you. Phantom Mangle, likewise, can't kill you or even jumpscare you, but can produce very loud static that makes it hard to hear Springtrap coming.
    • Five Nights at Freddy's 4: Nightmare Foxy seeks to jump out and murder the player (who is possibly a child, if they're the same person as the Crying Child seen in the cutscenes). In the Halloween DLC Nightmare Mangle combines the worst of Nightmare Foxy and Phantom Mangle, as if they get into the closet, the static makes it hard to hear other animatronics. And while this probably doesn't count, it should probably be noted that the Crying Child's bully older brother, who's responsible for the bite that killed him thanks to stuffing his brother's head inside an active Fredbear's mouth, wears a Foxy mask.
    • Five Nights at Freddy's: Sister Location: Funtime Foxy is as dangerous as the rest of the animatronics in the game; if they're found in the dark, they'll leap out, screaming, with their jaws snapping and their face lifting up, revealing their endoskeleton.
    • Freddy Fazbear's Pizzeria Simulator: Rockstar Foxy is initially an aversion, but in Ultimate Custom Night he zigzags this as he becomes the Wild Card of the player's attempt to survive. He might help the player, he might kill the player. But at least he's Affably Evil about it. Getting certain scores also shows clips from Bear of Vengeance, in which Foxy is nominally considered the villain of the story (with Mangle as his sidekick), but his methods of dealing with Freddy are more Poke the Poodle than any real villainy (forcing Freddy to cook him breakfast, wear a fruit hat, or dress up like Santa and give out presents. In the end, he gets bored of fighting Freddy and takes a vacation.
    • Five Nights At Freddys VR Help Wanted: Grimm Foxy is always wreathed in flames and the second he has you in his sight, he'll chase you down and try to kill you.
    • Five Nights at Freddy's: Security Breach: The Show Within a Show, "Freddy and Friends on Tour" portrays Foxy as a villain before becoming friends with the other characters. He is a pirate, after all.
  • Dash Kobayashi from Jitsu Squad is an albino fox warrior and The Dragon to the main villain Origami, and one of Origami's most sadistic enforcers. Besides betraying his clan and having them massacred in his backstory, he also killed Hero's (the... hero) father, and returns repeatedly to taunt the players besides killing his subordinate, Shade over her failure to apprehend the heroes.
  • League of Legends: Played With by Ahri. She is a fox-like vastaya who emotionally manipulates and absorbs the souls of her victims, but doing this also absorbs the victims' memories, giving her a glimpse of their most impactful emotions like grief and sorrow. This causes her to grow more and more conflicted as while she enjoys the feelings of absorbing souls, she can't help but empathize with her victims, and is guilt-ridden for harming innocents in the process.
  • Ōkami: Ninetails is the lord of Ryoshima Coast, and an evil fox demon who murders and impersonates the priestess Rao to get the Fox Rods needed to restore themselves to full power.
  • Pokémon has a few.
  • In Sonic Origins, the cutscene preceding Sonic the Hedgehog 2 shows a pair of foxes bullying Tails for his twin tails. Sonic runs past the two foxes, spinning them around and causing them to get dizzy, rescuing Tails in the process. From then on, Tails joins Sonic as his sidekick.
    • This is also humorously invoked by Eggman in the cutscene preceding Sonic the Hedgehog 3: when telling Knuckles about how Sonic and Tails are villains that they need to stop from getting the Master Emerald, the Imagine Spot shows Tails as a sinister-looking nine-tailed fox.
  • Super Ninja Meow Cat: The boss of level 2 is an anthropomorphic fox with an Arrogant Kung-Fu Guy personality.
    Fox: You cant [sic] out fox me! I am a fox!

    Web Animation 

  • The Kumiho from The Fox Sister is a nine-tailed fox spirit who's very much malevolent (as they're typically depicted in Korean folklore), disguising herself as a human so she can get close to her human victims and eat them.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • The main antagonist in the Baby Huey cartoons is a fox who tries to eat Huey's duckling friends. Huey at first thinks he's friendly, which the fox tries to use to his advantage, only to be stymied by the giant gosling's Nigh-Invulnerability and Stout Strength. Eventually, Huey wises up and realizes "You're the fox, and you're trying to eat me!" and lays the smackdown on the fox.
  • Bluey: In "Blue Mountains", the villain of the game the Heeler family are playing is a fox (played by Bandit's hand) who pretends to be "kindly" and tricks Big Sister (Chilli's hand) into getting trapped in a cave (Bandit's mouth).
  • Courage the Cowardly Dog: The Cajun Fox tries to kidnap Muriel, intending to make her into Cajun Granny Stew.
  • Dora the Explorer: The show's primary antagonist is a fox named Swiper, whose primary goal is to rob Dora of whatever she's carrying in each episode. He's also rather petty; if he manages to get the stuff, he'll proceed to just throw it into the distance, where she needs to stop her quest to retrieve them. A few episodes do flesh Swiper out a bit more- one episode shows where he lives, for example.
  • Garfield and Friends: One minor antagonist in the show's U.S. Acres segments was a fox who would often try to steal chickens from the henhouse (and in a few cases, Sheldon the Egg).
  • One segment of King Leonardo and His Short Subjects is "The Hunter," which centers on a Funny Animal hound dog that works as a police detective. His cases always involve a series of thefts of one or two particular items. The culprit is invariably The Fox, who repurposes the stolen items into something else that he sells for profit. The Idiot Hero exposes the criminal by happenstance, then claims his bumbling was intentional.
  • Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness: Junjie the fox deeply envies Shifu for being the master of the Jade Palace instead of him. He's also a Manipulative Bastard.
  • Mao Mao: Heroes of Pure Heart has Rufus, a charlatan fox that has no qualms against swindling, scamming and even abducting Pure Heart Valley's residents.
    • Mao Mao also had to deal with having a fox as one of his childhood bullies.
  • Peter Rabbit: Mr. Tod is an antagonistic fox who is usually seen trying to eat Peter Rabbit and his friends. He also tends to think of himself as somewhat of an evil genius and takes pride in being the top predator in the area.
  • A Robot Chicken sketch based on Emmet Otters Jugband Christmas has Emmet invite Frankie Fox as the newest member of the jug band. However, the rest of the band are wary, as foxes are their natural enemies. Sure enough, Frankie attacks them all during their performance of "We're All the Same on Christmas Day."
    Emmet: Wait! Ain't we all the same on Christmas day?
    Frankie: Oh, we're not the same, cause I ain't dead! Merry Christmas!
  • Shaun the Sheep: A recurring villain is a fox, who often attempts to capture the farm animals.
  • Tiny Toon Adventures: One episode of the show, entitled "Fox Trot" was created following the show's Channel Hop from syndication to Fox Kids. The episode's wraparounds featured Buster and Babs being chased by the Fox Network Executives, who are depicted as a pair of hungry foxes.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Evil Fox



Slagar, a fox, is a merciless slaver and kidnapper who is plotting against Matthias and his family.

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