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TV Head Robot

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Exactly What It Says on the Tin. An automaton, robot or droid with a television set for a head.

Say the technology for synthetic skin has not yet been perfected and you want to avoid the Uncanny Valley. Maybe you don't have much but some spare parts, dwindling funds and a TV at your disposal. Maybe it just looks cool. For whatever reason, this is a robot or other sentient being with a monitor onto which they project images or outright words that are often snarky responses to people interacting with them.

Not to be confused with a sentient AI or a talking computer. This strictly applies to walking automatons.

Often speaks through a variant of Talking with Signs. Compare/contrast Surveillance Drone and The Blank. See also Screens Are Cameras, if they possess the television face, but no discernible sensory equipment with which to actually see.



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    Anime & Manga 

    Asian Animation 
  • Headmaster Tele of Happy Heroes has a TV screen for a head.
  • Popo from the Korean show TELEMONSTER is a robot with the ability to turn its mouth into a television screen which it has the ability to suck people into.

    Comic Books 
  • Several of the Spider-Slayers have this, including the first.
  • Telly, the "son" of Tank and Booga, in Tank Girl.
  • Dr. Arnim Zola, who's preserved himself in a robot body. His face is displayed on a screen in his chest.
  • The people of Planet Robot from Brian K. Vaughan's Saga all have televisions for heads. How modern and decorative a TV head is denotes wealth, and may be a sort of Fantastic Caste System. Commoners like Dengo have very boxy heads with grainy monochrome displays. Nobles like Prince Robot IV, his wife, and their son have sleek heads with clear pictures in color. The leader, King Robot, has a flat screen TV for a head that is twice the height of the rest of his body.
  • Walter from Judge Dredd. When he's distressed, his face projects static.
  • Played from horror in an issue of Transformers: More than Meets the Eye: In an alternate universe, the ruling council of Cybertron have replaced the usual means of surgical disfigurement with a new one where the victim's head is replaced with a TV, which they "speak" through. On occasion, it even plays pop-up ads. Eventually it transpires that they're watching people through these screens, and can communicate through them.
  • The New 52 Earth 2 version of Robert Crane (the Golden Age Robotman) has a head comprising a transparent dome containing his brain, with a flatscreen computer monitor on the front.

  • RoboCop 2's Big Bad Cain, after he is turned into a cyborg.
    • Also in the same film, one of the failed Robo prototypes ([1]).
  • The Walking TV from Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs.
  • Ibor, Synonamess Botch's Giant Mook, in Twice Upon A Time. Unlike most other examples of this trope, it possesses little to no sentience, strictly following Botch's orders without question. Most of the time, it uses its screen to display clips from old movies or other cartoons reflecting some other character's emotional state.
  • TV from The Brave Little Toaster, who apparantly has a short, balding man for a face.
  • WEEBO in Flubber, but the monitor flips up; she uses it whenever she needs to snark.
  • Wreck-It Ralph has the First-Person Shooter in Hero's Duty, which doesn't appear at all to the player but is visible as a TV Head Robot to game characters and does have a personality (although not a voice) when the player isn't controlling it.
  • Odyssey Into The Mind's Eye features characters with televisions for heads (although whether they are robots is up for debate). This is the least strangest thing that gets used as a head.
  • The Ghost of Christmas Future in Scrooged has only a TV monitor under its cowl, showing either static or a skull-like face.
  • The robot GERTY in the movie Moon has a screen displaying an emoji in lieu of a face.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Sheldon of The Big Bang Theory tries to become one of these, controlled from his bedroom, to avoid sickness, danger, etc.
  • iTeacher from Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide.
  • 790 from Lexx, whose head mostly consists of three screens.
  • Datas from Tensou Sentai Goseiger is pretty much an arcade machine with arms and legs. The screen is his face by default but can also show anything (such as communications, or whatever the Monster of the Week is up to once detected.)
  • Holly from Red Dwarf normally appears as just a face on a screen, but has on occasion moved around the ship in the form of a wheeled robot with a television screen for a head (most notably in the episode "Queeg", where Holly is usurped and given the duty of night watchman).

  • One of these appears in the music video for the Muse song "The 2nd Law: Unsustainable" from their album The 2nd Law. It's kinda creepy-looking.

  • The American Idiot musical often has images of people with televisions for heads painted in the background.

    Video Games 
  • Batman: Arkham Asylum: In one first-person area, at the end of a hallway is a Joker mannequin with a TV for a head. It's actually him.
  • The Lord Of Games in Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts is one
  • In The Dishwasher: Dead Samurai, the pentultimate boss has a TV set for a head, and the achievement for beating him is "Smash Your TV".
  • Fallout: New Vegas: The page picture is a Securitron. The face depends on their purpose (and which AI is currently running it). The majority broadcast the picture's bulb-nosed cop, or a soldier if the player takes certain actions, Victor has a stereotypical cowboy, and Yes Man is a smiling face.
  • Everyone (except maybe player character) in Mondo Medicals and Mondo Agency fits this trope.
  • The Bruiser from Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil has a TV mouth.
  • The Squarians in Level Up.
  • The Drakel Freak enemy from AdventureQuest is a cyborg with a TV for its head, with an organic muzzle protruding from it.
  • One of Metalhead's costumes in Guitar Hero III is one.
  • These show up as an enemy in the N64 South Park game.
  • Robots in Might and Magic III: The Isles of Terra.
  • Telly from Chibi-Robo! is a Robot Buddy that takes his namesake from the fact that he is a tiny flying TV head.
  • The dozens of Vidbots scattered throughout the first dream world of Obsidian. They appear nothing short of televisions on metal poles without any visible means of locomotion, but they can move anyway; their "faces" usually show just the nose and mouth of a human in black and white, some of them have buttons or spindly mechanical arms and hands depending on who does what, and none of them tolerate broken rules, not even the receptionist.
  • Alt from Pop'n Music is a computer monitor-head robot.
  • Undertale:
    • Mettaton is a big metal box on a wheel with a monitor that often shows a big "M". Then you flip his switch, and he ditches this trope.
    • Though he's not really a robot, Photoshop Flowey has a TV for a head, which displays Flowey's crazed face, a real greyscaled human head, and the six human SOULs.
  • Emet from Evolve has a screen for a face with several preset expressions and symbols that he switches between.
  • The enemies in Iron Brigade are the "Tubes", an army of killer TV-headed robots.
  • Dr. Graaff from Iron Marines has a TV face on his torso. It also shows which personality and mode he's currently using — an angry red face for Assault Mode, and a happy green face for Assist Mode.
  • In SOMA, Site Lambda includes a robot with a brain scan of Catherine Chun inside that uses a flat-screen monitor to communicate.
  • A variant in Observer when Dan Lazarski connects to the mind of the killer that stalked him through most of the game. One of the first things he sees is a group of people staring at him with boxy TVs for heads, all showing twitching human mouths in black-and-white.
  • ROBO_Head of Cytus II has a computer monitor for a head.
  • Mr. Entertainment, host of Sprint Vector, has a monitor for a head that looks like a Raygun Gothic television. The image on it changes depending on what he's talking about.
  • One of the late-game enemies in Freedom Planet is a robot with a CRT monitor for a head. However, the screen is used only to display its Black Bead Eyes (actually yellow eyes on black screen, but the principle is the same).
  • In the Ravenhearst game's numerous sequels, TV Head Mannequins are something of a signature gimmick of the Dalimar clan. Although none can walk on their own, some move about on track-wires and make gestures sufficient to qualify as "robots", not just odd TV-stands.
  • Some versions of Space Station 13 have these as a playable race named the Integrated Positronic Chassis. Their positronic brain is uniquely placed inside their chest rather than their head. Not to be confused with synths or the station AI's worker cyborgs.
  • Everyone in Job Simulator appears to be some kind of hovering computer monitor with a digital face on the screen and a coffee cup welded to the side.

    Web Animation 
  • Robo-san from Robosan And Wanchan has a television set for a head, on which is displayed the wide dots that serve as his eyes.

    Web Comics 
  • Rice Boy has The One Electronic (T.O.E.), a bit of an unusual example. Instead of pictures drawn by the author, he projects scenes from movies and television shows much more like, well, an actual TV. He also smokes.
  • The TV cat note  in the Dresden Codak Story Arc Dark Science. As of yet, the nature of this creature (robot? cyborg??) isn't clear, though.
  • The Property of Hate's RGB is, if not an actual robot, at least a TV-Headed... Something.
  • Doctor from Only Human.
  • The Objectheads in Pilot have electronic devices in place of heads. When it comes to what it is, they run the gamut; Some have old, box televisions, some have flatscreens, while others have phones.
    • Jerry, while not an Objecthead, has a monochrome display instead of a face. It displays a question mark most of the time, but can display other things as well.
  • Yuven Hubbub and Commander Andrew from My Stereo Bot.
  • Fortuna: The first gen Apollo, Artemis, Eros and Hermes AI units have this, and later models are likely to have this.

    Western Animation 
  • Transformers Animated has Tutor Bot, a direct Shout-Out to Lord Canti. Wreck-Gar's head was specifically designed to resemble a TV set, due to the fact that G1 Junkions were obsessed with Earth TV programming.
  • ReBoot brings us Mike the TV, whose screen is both his head and torso.
  • In Hanna-Barbera's The Little Rascals episode "Science Fair and Foul", Buckwheat's home-built robot has a TV set for its head.
  • D-nerd from The Bots Master
  • Spongebob Squarepants has Karen, Plankton's "computer-wife", sometimes. Most of the time her head's an old computer monitor placed on a thin pole attached to a base with wheels and occasionally she'll have arms as well. One episode has her and Plankton going through a rough patch in their relationship and Plankton upgrades to a newer, curvier computer bot with a sleeker monitor.
  • Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go! has TV Monster.
  • The Venture Bros.: Dr. Venture builds G.U.A.R.D.O. to handle security while Brock is away. The hulking robot has a monitor for a head, which displays the (nebbish and non-threatening) face of Dr. Venture himself.
  • We Bare Bears: In "Icy Nights II", Ice Bear's nemesis Barry the Bro-grammer has an army of Mecha-Mooks with smart-phones for heads that emote by displaying various emoji. Near the end of the episode, Ice Bear and his old friend Yana encounter a much larger version with a tablet computer for a head.


    Real Life 


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