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The Peeping Tom

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"When I was a girl, I'd sneak in the boys' locker room
Hide deep inside, it was my little creep stalker room
As they disrobed, I was oogling and ogling
Little did they know that for me, they were modelling!"
The Lonely Island feat. Nicki Minaj, "The Creep"

The Peeping Tom is a character who gets his kicks from non-consensual voyeurism — spying on others in explicit situations without their permission or knowledge. Peeping Toms are often driven by a fetishistic urge, deriving pleasure not just from the act of spying itself, but from the thrill of the potential for getting caught. This is, unfortunately, a case of Truth in Television, as acts of peeping are reported in all cultures around the world, their goal made easier each year as Technology Marches On.

The methods of peeping can vary from work to work, from the classic depiction of a pervert peering through windows to watch people changing clothes, to Naughty Birdwatching through the use of telescopes or binoculars, to the tech-savvy voyeur who sets up hidden cameras in bathroom stalls. While these characters are commonly male, a female Peeping Tom (or "Peeping Tammy", if you will) is plausible. Characters who focus their attention on only the subject of their unrequited affection may be both The Peeping Tom and a Stalker with a Crush.

If the one being watched knows there's a peeper looking but doesn't care, that's a Shameless Fanservice Girl. In some cases, they might be The Tease and give the peeper an even bigger show than they expected.

In more dramatic stories, it is rare for a Peeping Tom character to be shown in a sympathetic light. In works where this trope is played for laughs, however, a Chivalrous Pervert may show some Peeping Tom tendencies.

A subtrope of Girl Watching. Sometimes overlaps with Outdoor Bath Peeping in cases where the spying is intentional. An innocent character who is wrongfully accused of being a Peeping Tom is instead an Accidental Pervert. Compare Window Watcher, which is more about peeping because one is nosy about others' business. See "No Peeking!" Request for when someone asks for this not to occur.

If the movie about this kind of character is what you're looking for, click here.

The name for this trope comes from the misinterpretation of the Lady Godiva legend. According to said legend, when the lady rode naked through the city (to protest the taxes imposed by her husband), the townsfolk politely shut their windows to avoid seeing her. Later, a painting was created to memorize the legend, featuring a single man looking at the lady, supposed to be her shocked husband. However, people assumed that this was a shamelessly peeking townsman and labeled him "Peeping Tom"; some time later, the legend actually gained this detail about one man who dared look at his lady and went blind in result.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In City Hunter, when Ryo Saeba is not kicking tons of ass or trying to kiss/grope beautiful women he tries to have a pervy look at the latter in the women's room or bathrooms. Naturally, Kaori Makimura is always around to smash his head with her mallet when he does this.
  • Kappei from Dash Kappei. In the first episode, he is introduced while peeping into the locker room of the girls.
  • In the manga version of Death Note, Matt is tasked with spying on Misa, and very much enjoys it, at least until he gets bored because she isn't doing anything interesting and turns his attention to his video games. He even points out to Mello at one point that "switching jobs would mean getting to spy on a cute girl." (Mello is rather unenthused.)
  • In Doraemon, Nobita sometimes has used few Doraemon's gadget to peep Shizuka in the bath.
  • Dragon Ball:
    • Dirty Old Man Master Roshi tries twice to use Bulma's inventions for this. First, he uses a watch that can shrink the person who is wearing it as a way to spy on Bulma while she is on the toilet but fails. Then, he uses Bulma's little fly robot to spy some girls on the beach.
    • A filler episode features two of Oolong's comrades trying to spy on Chi-Chi in a spa. Unfortunately, a crowd of other pigs come as well to watch and end up breaking the shack, causing Chi-Chi to stop undressing and panic.
  • Dungeon no Osananajimi: Chapter 4 features Ryuuka being given the chance to watch Van when he's not at her dungeon by way of a Magical Witchcraft Monitor, essentially a television set that gives Surveillance as the Plot Demands focused on Van. Despite a token protest, Ryuuka spends every moment Van's not physically with her watching the TV for days at a time, the narration going so far as to call her a complete stalker. The issue is ultimately resolved when Van, having noticed he's being watched but not sure how, starts glaring in the direction of the camera, and the sight of his angry face being directed towards her makes Ryuuka destroy the monitor.
  • In the third season of The Familiar of Zero, some of the male students have dug a tunnel so they can peep on the girls in the bath. They then try to cheer up Saito by inviting him along but have to actually drag him there since he's reluctant to get into more trouble with Louise. Sure enough, they get caught and everyone ends up in trouble.
  • Great Teacher Onizuka: Mr. Sakurai has been spying on and secretly recording women, especially underage ones, as they go to the bathroom, for 28 years.
  • GTO: The Early Years: The main characters do this or try to pretty often, once even getting Night-Vision Goggles to spy on their neighbor masturbating (but it turns out their neighbor was actually a Drag Queen).
  • In Green Green, the male supporting cast does get caught up on this in pretty much every episode.
  • In Heaven's Lost Property, Tomoki does this since the first episode where he uses an invisibility cloak to peep on Sohara changing. And this is arguably one of his tamer examples. One more memorable is when assemble a sort of "scope pipe peeping system" to spy on the town's girl population!
  • Issei in High School D×D. One of the primary reasons his girlfriends keep him on a short leash is that he loves to sneak into the girls' locker room or up to a peep-hole and watch them change. In fact, he was introduced trying to do this. Though he wasn't actually peeping at the time, he very much wanted to.
    • His friends Matsuda and Motohama do this also. The girls of the Kendo club are often subjected to their lecherous peeping.
  • In Another World with My Smartphone: When Touya makes a hot spring bath for the Silver Moon Inn, Cesca tries to climb the wall separating the men and women's side to get to him. Touya had the foresight of enchanting the top of the wall with Paralyze to electrocute anyone who tries to peep.
  • Jagaaaaaan: Robahata sneaks into houses of cute girls, hiding cameras in their rooms, then he goes home watching the girls the cameras are recording. That's not all, he gets a little...crazy while watching them.
  • During his training with Lisa Lisa in Jo Jos Bizarre Adventure Battle Tendency, Joseph manages to peep on her when she's in the bath. He is later horrified when he's told he was sneaking a peep on his 50 year old mother.
  • In Love Hina, three of the girls spy on Keitaro trying to kiss a sleeping Naru during one of their study sessions. Naru apparently was awake the whole time, and gives Keitaro a nice punch, followed by poking her finger into the three holes used for said peeping.
  • Chou from Majokko Meg-chan spent most of his time spying on Meg (also in the opening) and caught her in compromising situations. In an occasion, he enjoys watching her spanked by his mom but ends up falling from his tower.
  • Toad Sage Jiraiya in Naruto spied on girls in hot springs all the time. He called it "research." Somewhat justified in that he was a popular author of trashy romance novels (but most of the time it sounds like a lame excuse, and his "profession" more likely came from his "hobbies" than the other way round).
  • In Ranma ˝, the Dirty Old Man Happosai is literally a master of this.
    • Nodoka, Ranma's mother, has a definition of "manliness" that includes a man must be a peeping tom.
  • In the first OVA of Tenchi Muyo!, Tenchi's dad, Noboyuki, is shown to be this, going so far as to videotape his own son when he has Ryoko in his room in the second episode. This is downplayed massively in later editions.
  • The main character of Underdog sets up hidden cameras to spy on women around his college campus, so that he can later edit their pictures into pornographic images. Despite his status as a protagonist, this portrayal is anything but sympathetic.

    Comic Books 
  • The third Ant-Man, Eric O'Grady, is a complete pervert and uses the Ant-Man suit's shrinking powers to spy on women in various stages of undress. One occasion has him spy on Carol Danvers while she was in the shower.
  • Batgirl apprehends one in issue #2 of Batgirl (Rebirth).
  • Mark Hamill's The Black Pearl is an unusual quasi-heroic example.
  • This is a running gag in Chilean comic book Condorito, as he tends to spy on young women as they are bathing, undressing or skinny dipping. Sometimes he gets away with it, other times he gets beaten to a pulp.
  • A strange example appeared in The Dandy from its beginning to the mid-1950s and then in another comic called Sparky for almost a decade before being revived in The Dandy a number of times. This example was a strip called Keyhole Kate about a girl who loved to look through keyholes. Because The Dandy was a children's comic the whole thing was seemingly innocent if a bit creepy and very much Played for Laughs. The new online incarnation of The Dandy reinvents Kate as an Intrepid Reporter.
  • In an issue of JLA, Wonder Woman is at home, about to change her clothes, and suddenly turns and addresses the red and yellow light fixture on the wall: "If my body were the last thing you ever saw, would it be worth it?" Plastic Man gets the hint and leaves with a sulk.
  • In Alan Moore's Lost Girls, Wendy is caught watching Alice and Dorothy having sex outdoors. An earlier scene implies that Alice watches Dorothy having sex with Rolf outdoors. In Wendy's flashback, "The Captain" watched her and Peter Pan having sex while masturbating.
  • The unnamed Mummy from Mélusine who keeps spying on the eponymous character in her bedroom.
  • ORPHANIMO!!: In the first album, while on the beach, Vic, Sharp, and Jay Jay try to spy on some women in the showers with a camera (the images of which are send to Sharp's laptop computer) connected to a remote-controlled miniature zeppelin. Unfortunately for them, they accidentally pick the men's shower instead and the beach volleyball players inside are not amused by the kids' antics. They succeed later after having ditched the angry men by deploying the Crashing Through the Harem trope.
  • In Le Petit Spirou a repeated gag is about Spirou and his friends trying ogle naked women.
  • Red Ears:
    • There's a gag where a woman in a hotel sunbathes nude underneath several big lights in her room. The bellhop spies on her through the keyhole, which leaves a keyhole-shaped mark over his eye. When she goes down to the lobby, every man in the hotel has a similar mark.
    • There's another gag where a voyeur spies on a naked woman through a keyhole. When she notices him but decides to let him in, he ignores her and proceeds to spy on the empty hallway.
  • Greedy Smurf plays this role in The Smurfs comic book story "You Don't Smurf Progress" when Smurfette takes a shower out in the forest and Greedy tries to get a peek but is stopped by one of the robot servants.
  • Uncanny X-Men has one of the O.N.E. operatives using the Sentinels' x-ray scanners to get a peep at Rachel Summers as she's about to get into the shower, and gets shut down by a wrathful Val Cooper.

    Fan Works 
  • Technically disregarded in the How to Train Your Dragon fic Black As Night, as a traditional Viking wedding ceremony would require the rest of the tribe to watch the bride and groom to confirm that the relationship had been consummated; since Hiccup has been blinded by a tragic accident early in dragon training, he asks that this part of the tradition be ignored as he would feel uncomfortable if everyone else in the tribe got to see Astrid naked when he can never do the same.
  • Let's just say Prussia, Spain, and France were this in Gankona, Unnachgiebig, Unità. They watched as Germany, Japan, and Italy got it on under the guise of just doing surveillance on the ship.
  • In Pokémon Reset Bloodlines, Erika bans male challengers from her gym due to a Dirty Old Man spying on a wedding of two of Erika's coworkers.
  • In the Twilight fic "Gifted", Bella forms a complex relationship with Rosalie and Emmett where Rosalie is in love with Bella and Emmett separately while Bella and Emmett just consider themselves good friends. At one point Bella finds herself watching Emmett and Rosalie having sex from a distance, but just feels happy that Rosalie can feel so much love, admitting to Rosalie later that she never felt as though Rosalie 'stopped' loving Bella just because she was engaged with Emmett.
  • For the most part, The Power of Seven focuses on a positive version of this, as Ginny realises that she actually gets turned on both seeing Harry with other witches and the knowledge that she’s being watched with him (although the 'peeping' aspect is downplayed as Ginny is very obvious about the fact that she's watching Harry with them). However, a more typical version occurs in chapter 24 when Ron unintentionally witnesses Harry in a foursome with Ginny, Katie, and Demelza in the Quidditch changing rooms, although Ron is outside the room and disillusions himself so that nobody can see him.
  • The Lightning Strike;
    • Wanda unwittingly does this when her powers make her aware of Skye and Harry having sex, to the extent that she can feel what Harry feels when Skye's giving him a blowjob. As she starts training in her powers with Harry and Skye, Wanda comes to accept this part of herself, finding that she enjoys both watching others and being watched.
    • Natasha develops this after her reproductive organs are healed, finding herself aroused watching Harry with other women.

    Film — Live Action 
  • In 7th Heaven, Rat the sewer worker likes to look up the skirts of the girls that walk over the storm drain above his head.
  • Ajnabee: Raj comes into Sonia's bedroom to return a book he borrowed but catches her just as she's coming out of the shower in just a Modesty Towel, but she doesn't notice him. But instead of announcing his presence or leaving, he hides him in the corner and watches her as she drops the towel and gets dressed. She later reveals she did notice him and made a show of getting dressed just to rile him up.
  • The entire film Alone With Her is shown through the spy cameras the main character has hidden in his clothes and his love interest's home.
  • In Animal House, Bluto Blutarsky uses a ladder to peer through the second-story window of a sorority house.
  • The Archer: Lauren discovers that Michael likes to spy on the girls when they're in the shower.
  • In Back to the Future, the then-teenage George McFly spies on then-teenage Lorraine undressing from a tree next to her window. This becomes crucial to the plot as this is the point where Marty alters history. When George falls out of the tree, Marty pushes him out of the way of an oncoming car...accidentally preventing his parents' original meeting.
    Marty: [disgusted] He's a peeping Tom!
  • Bedazzled (2000): After his second wish, Elliot gets sent invisibly into Alison's bedroom as she's showering, and the Devil urges him to "sneak a peek", which he tries to do. After she comes out he briefly gets one.
  • Benedetta: Felicita spies on Benedetta and Bartolomea through a hole she cut in the wall to Benedetta's room (which was formerly hers), therefore learning that they're lovers since she watches while they have sex.
  • Black Mama, White Mama: Matron Densmore is shown to have a peep hole which lets her look into the prison shower, which she does while the prisoners are playfully horsing around naked, masturbating while watching them.
  • In Blood Harvest, Jill's stalker watches her through the living room window as she has sex with Scott on the floor.
  • Blue Thunder. Murphy and Lymangood use their police helicopter to hover outside a young lady's picture window to watch her practice nude yoga. A neighbour gets annoyed at the noise of their rotors and puts in a complaint, and according to Da Chief it's not the first time this has happened, implying she knows she has an audience.
  • Alfred in The Burning, who almost gets kicked out of camp for peeking on Sally in the shower, and later on spies on her and Glazer getting cozy and making out.
  • Capps Crossing: When Robin is changing in her tent, someone (presumably David) sneaks up to videotape her stripping.
  • In Change of Habit, Julio spies on Michelle as she's getting ready for bed, right before his Attempted Rape of her.
  • Disturbia, a modern-day adaptation of Rear Window also uses this trope with Kale spying on Girl Next Door Ashley getting out of the pool in a bikini or undressing.
  • The Abbot watches Mosquito and Victoria having sex from behind a one-way mirror in Dobermann.
  • Europa Europa: Solly gets the hots for his female instructor at the orphanage, climbing onto the wall so he can spy through the open window at her in her night gown.
  • In Frankenstein's Castle of Freaks, Genz spies on Krista while she is in the bath, on Maria and Eric while they having sex, and on Krista and Maria while they are bathing in the mineral springs.
  • Crazy Ralph in Friday the 13th Part 2.
  • In Girl House, Loverboy is shown at work staring up a female office worker's skirt. Also the nature of the Girl House is pretty voyeuristic.
  • In In the Cut, Frannie goes to use the bathroom in the basement of a dive bar, but sees an unknown man getting a blow job in a dark corner. Frannie lingers to watch and observes the man's wrist tattoo, and it's suggested the man knows she's watching.
  • One of the characters in In the Heat of the Night has an alibi dependent on whether he's a Peeping Tom or not.
  • Kimi: Angela's neighbor often spies on her with his binoculars. While creepy, it actually comes in handy when he spots her as she's being dragged into the building and confronts the thugs, getting stabbed for his trouble while allowing her to escape. Despite his peeping, the man (Kevin) turns out to be a good guy who'd been a shut-in like Angela.
  • Lady Macbeth: At one point Anna spies on Katherine having sex with Sebastian in her room by peering through the keyhole.
  • Parodied in Lifeforce when Lt. Carlson interrogates a woman whose body was taken over by the psychic female space-vampire.
    Lt. Carlson: Despite appearances, this woman is a masochist. An extreme masochist. She wants me to beat the information out of her. If you can't handle it, wait outside!
    Col. Caine: Not at all. I am a natural voyeur.
  • Jon Lovitz plays one in the first scene of Little Nicky - when he gets knocked out of his tree, we follow him all the way down to Hell.
  • The Loft: Luke has secretly installed cameras in the loft and uses them to record his friends' trysts, with the implication that he is watching them back for his own pleasure.
  • Two of the four male teenage leads in Loose Screws try to get a peek at the female French teacher without her clothes on, only to get caught in the act in some way. Hugh G. Rection tries this while peeking into her house's bedroom as he is filming her with a video camera. Marvin Eatmore tries this while peeking at her through the ceiling space above the girls' change room.
  • In Mackintosh and T.J., Coley's Establishing Character Moment involves looking through a window, trying to watch Maggie change. To his annoyance, she moves away from the window just as she takes her shirt off, and doesn't reappear until she's in her nightgown. He tries again late in the movie. This time Maggie's husband Luke catches him and tries to strangle him. Coley hits him with a rock, killing him.
  • Manos: The Hands of Fate - The tender 'Peeping Torgo' scene.
    Crow: Oh, it's the latest episode of the Taster's Choice saga!
  • Bart from The Night Clerk (2020) hides cameras in hotel guests' rooms. He says it's so he can learn social skills by observing them, which doesn't stop him from directing lone attractive women to the rooms with the cameras.
  • Night School (1981), Gus is a peeping tom, which leads Taj to suspect him of being the killer. He is arrested while peeping at the house where the final murders take place.
  • Peeping Tom: Mark is a Serial Killer who films himself killing girls with the use of a camera and a tripod with a hidden knife in it, when he's not using his camera to secretly record people. He also has a habit of watching people and staring into windows, and has wired every room of his boarding house for sound so that he can eavesdrop and record the tenants' audio.
  • In The Phantom of the Opera (2004), stagehand Joseph Buquet is seen spying on the dancers as they get dressed.
  • Played for Laughs in Phffft! — Janis never pulls down her shade in order to keep her male neighbor on the edge of his seat, hoping to catch a glimpse of something.
  • Both Mahoney and Lt. Harris in Police Academy. In one scene, Mahoney is watching the female police cadets as they shower while drinking a beer. He gets busted by Lt. Harris who takes the beer and starts peeping himself only to be immediately noticed.
  • The famous shower room scene from Porky's shows the guys cutting a hole into the wall of the gym shower to spy on the girls, but get a surprise when Ms. Balbricker comes in.
  • The Prowler (1951) opens with a peeping tom peering through the bathroom window as Susan prepares to take a bath. This event kicks off the entire plot, and Webb later uses the existence of this prowler to murder John and make it look like an accidental shooting.
  • In all versions of Psycho Norman Bates spies on a woman while they're getting undressed through a hole in the wall.
  • In Queen and Country, the sequel to Hope and Glory, Bill's friend Percy stands on his shoulders to peep into the dormitory of two nurses they had met earlier in the evening and claims to see much more than he actually does. When they change places one of the nurse, Sophie, actually presses her breast to the window, causing Bill to lose his balance.
  • In Rear Window, the main character (Jimmy Stewart in the original) is a photographer who broke his leg (or is paralyzed from the neck down, in the remake with Christopher Reeve) and thus confined to his apartment. Feeling bored, he starts spying on his neighbors and eventually becomes convinced that one of them killed his wife.
  • The Lambdas in Revenge of the Nerds take this trope to an extreme by installing surveillance cameras in all the bedrooms and showers of the sorority house.
  • Rough Night: All of Blair's friends watch by using binoculars when she's having sex with Lea and Pietro.
  • Saw features a web of voyeurism, with multiple characters revealed to be peeping on each other. The serial killer Jigsaw gets to know his potential victims from afar, then peeps on them during their captivity. He refers to Adam as a “voyeur,” since Adam’s job is to secretly photograph adulterers in the act. Zepp is shown peeping on Dr. Gordon’s daughter and spends much of the film watching video surveillance of Dr. Gordon’s and Adam’s captivity. Detective Tapp obsessively watches Dr. Gordon via video surveillance and hires Adam to secretly photograph him.
  • In The Seduction, stalker Derek Sanford is also a peeping Tom.
  • William Baldwin plays one in Sliver. He videotapes all of his tenants.
  • The Sniper: The police start calling in every known sex offender in the city to quiz them. One of the offenders in the first batch is a peeping tom. It is watching his interview that convinces Dr. Kent that this is the wrong tactic. As he explains to Lt. Kafka, sex offenders stick to a particular type of crime, and they need to be looking for someone with a history of violence against women, not peeping toms.
  • A major plot point in the Hungarian comedy film Sound Eroticism. The manager of an all-female crate factory installs a hidden security camera in the dressing room, then sells crates to the customers who are all too eager to watch the employees undress.
  • Captain Stillman in Stripes engages in Naughty Birdwatching from his office, peeping into the female showers. When a high-ranking officer surprises him, Stillman is so startled that he accidentally drops the telescope through the closed window.
  • Strippers Vs. Werewolves: The werewolves, especially Barker, like watching woman undress in changing rooms via two-way mirror.
  • Sweetwater: Martin the general store owner spies on female customers changing into dresses in his fitting room using a peephole from the back of the property. Sarah catches him and jabs him in the eye with the tip of her parasol early on. Later during her killing spree, she shoots him through the rectum as he's standing with his pants down outside there masturbating while he watches a girl changing through the peephole.
  • In The Talented Mr. Ripley, Tom Ripley is a literal version of this as he spies on Dickie and Marge as they have sex. The creepiness is increased by the fact that you genuinely can't tell which one of them he's more jealous of.
  • Ted Bundy: At one point Ted follows a woman home and watches her undress in front of a window while he masturbates. A revolted neighbor throws a bucket of water on him.
  • They/Them (2022): The creepy groundskeeper Balthazar is revealed to have a hidden video feed to the women's shower, where he watches them. He's killed while doing so. He's also the hacker of the group. We see a laptop running a hacking program on one of the camper's smartphones among a pile of other smartphones.
  • Train: Instead of searching the train for Todd, Sheldon decides to spy on a hot woman taking a shower via a peephole into the bathroom. It is while he is doing this that he is captured by Gregor and Vasily.
  • Harry Reeves in Violent Saturday. He is infatuated with Linda Sherman and takes his dog for multiple walks late at night hoping to catch a glimpse of her undressing.
  • The Voyeurs: Pippa and Thomas start spying on their sexy neighbors across the way as the pair have sex with the windows wide open. They're at first conflicted, but increasingly get into it and even plant bugs in the neighbors' apartment for this. After it turns out Sebastian has been sleeping with many other women during the day, they get increasingly involved with their lives. It turns out in the end that Sebastian and Julia had also been spying on them this whole time, even sneakily getting legal permission for it, and wanted them to watch, role-playing things for manipulation.
  • In Wendigo, creepy Good Ol' Boy Otis spies on George and Kim while they have sex.
  • Whitewash: While hiding in a family's vacation home's shed, Bruce watches the wife, who is wearing a towel in front of the bathroom window, and masturbates.
  • In Wonderwall, Oscar discovers a hole in his wall and uses it to obsessively spy on his neighbor Penny, even when she's naked or having sex.

  • 2666: Hans and a few other soldiers watch Entrescu and the Baroness have sex.
  • Black Heart by Eric Van Lustbader. One character gets into the habit of perving on his sister every night while she masturbates. He doesn't react well on finding out she's started having sex with a boyfriend instead.
  • In Cheaper by the Dozen, the Gilbreth kids have a lot of fun threatening to burn one of Ernestine’s suitors alive when they find him up a tree peeping in her window.
  • Isaac Asimov's The Dead Past, written much earlier than Baxter's book, has a similar technology that only allows viewing of the past. It's eventually revealed that the government conspiracy suppressing knowledge and research into the time viewer is doing so specifically to avoid that scenario; while the device can only view the past, they realised that people would inevitably use it to look just 1/100th of a second into the past, effectively spying on their neighbours in real time. It also turns out that it can't look more than about 120 years into the past due to noise, so it would have been useless for the historian who kicks off the events of the book anyway.
  • In Eileen, Eileen watches her crush Randy through the windows of his house for hours, while imagining and hoping to catch him with a woman. She also watches (and is aroused by) Leonard Polk masturbating, though she didn't intentionaly seek it out.
  • In the stracts of the “Ancient Book” of Fairy Oak, we have Crocus Pills, Elderberry Barks and the Mc Load brothers. They have the added bonus of being able to make things (clothes) disappear.
  • In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Moaning Myrtle admits that she sometimes spies on prefects in the bath. It must suck being stuck with (ghostly?) teenage hormones for eternity while having no possible outlet what with being a ghost and all. Anyway, her voyeurism is the subject of the Wizard Rock song "Prefects are Hot" by the Moaning Myrtles.
  • Steven Baxter's The Light of Other Days revolves around the invention of wormhole technology allowing the viewing of any place or time in the past or present. The book explores how society might change when everyone knows that not only could everyone else spy on them at any time, but so could any number of people in the distant future as well.
  • The inhabitants of Mars in the "Mars and Venus" self-help books are described as building a telescope and using it almost entirely for the purpose of gawking at the Venusians until they figure out space travel.
  • The title character in Robert F. Young's "Peeping Tommy" was a time-traveler who happened to be the Peeping Tom of the Lady Godiva legend. He was also a bit of a practical joker and consequently was blinded not for sneaking a peek but for cutting off her hair.
  • Xandri Corelel: In Tone of Voice, Xandri catches a reporter trying to spy on her as she changes. She shoots him with her stun gun.
  • The Yattering of "The Yattering and Jack" takes this up as a hobby due to sometimes being bored about the house he's being a demon in. So he watches the young widow across the street who from what he can tell walks around naked often.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Several of these appear in 1000 Ways to Die, and predictably they end up as the asshole victims. Of special mention is how, in the segments about peeping Toms, there will always be a supposed PT explaining what's going on in the mind of the Toms, obviously with their faces obscured and their voices artificially changed.
  • In an episode of The Benny Hill Show, Benny is peeping through a beautiful woman's window when a policeman grabs him by the shoulder and says, "You are under arrest for being a Peeping...". At this point, the woman starts undressing and both Benny and the policeman can only stand there, entranced by the view. Once the woman is down to bra and panties she draws the shades (still unaware that she was being watched) and the policeman grabs Benny again and finishes his arrest by saying, "Tom!"
  • Counterpart: Clare Prime briefly watches on hidden cameras as her Alpha counterpart loses her virginity with Peter Quayle.
  • The warning signs in the backstories of a few serial killers on Criminal Minds.
  • At least one episode of CSI ("Strip Strangler") deals with a peeping tom who escalates to rape and murder.
  • One of the filmed sketches that were a mainstay of Dave Allen At Large showed the eponymous star as a town crier c.1800, ringing a handheld bell while looking at the curvy silhouette of a woman backlit in an upper story window. He calls out, "One AM and all's we-ell!" Fade out and back in to nearly the same scene, this time the woman is undressing and the crier rings his bell and calls, "Two AM and things are looking better!" Fade out and back in again to a closeup of the window, the crier sticks his head and an arm holding the bell out with the woman's arms wrapped around his neck, rings the bell madly about and shouts exultantly, "Twenty past three and everything's bloody marvelous!"
  • On an episode of Eight is Enough, Tommy drills a hole in his locker, which is against the girls' locker room. He gets caught peeping by the principal.
  • On an episode of The Equalizer, Chris Elliott has a brief part as a Peeping Tom - here he's just a harmless creep and not the bad guy of the story.
  • Foundation (2021): Cleon XIII has an unsettling habit of watching Eto Demerzel fix her artificial skin, though she is aware of it. She comments that he has been doing it ever since his childhood, and it appears to be this particular Cleon's kink.
  • The Haven episode "Double Jeopardy" opens with a man who secretly takes upskirt photos of unsuspecting women. He pays for it when Lady Justice comes to life and punishes him by ripping his eyes out of his head with a spoon.
  • Interview with the Vampire (2022):
    • "Is My Very Nature That of a Devil": Louis de Pointe du Lac has an inkling that Lestat de Lioncourt might have spied on him and Jonah Macon when they were at the bayou together (where Jonah had performed fellatio on Louis) when he spots Lestat's muddy boots at their home. Lestat admits the truth the next night by repeating what Louis had told Jonah about their relationship ("[Lestat] is a lot. It's not perfect.").
      Lestat: What can I say? I'm a lot. I'm not perfect.
      Louis: (scoffs) I knew it. I knew you were there.
      Lestat: Yes.
      Louis: You're jealous?
      Lestat: Yes. I don't like sharing.
      Louis: What about Antoinette?
      Lestat: It's different. I don't have feelings for her.
      Louis: He did me some face, and I drove him home.
      Louis: You watched the whole thing like some creeper!
    • "...The Ruthless Pursuit of Blood with All a Child's Demanding": Claudia, who is ignorant about sex (Lestat remarks that she's too sheltered), curiously observes a young couple engaging in foreplay, and even delays her feeding because she's so intrigued by what they're doing. When the two lovebirds realize that she's staring at them, they abruptly stop, and the man asks, "You gonna stand there watchin', little girl?" With nothing more to see, Claudia pounces on him and messily slurps his blood.
    • "A Vile Hunger for Your Hammering Heart": Claudia mentions that her uncle at the rooming house used to watch her pee when she was a child.
  • Irma Vep: Mira spies on her ex Laurie and Herman, Laurie's fiance, by peeking around the corner as they get intimate after sneaking into their suite. However, she leaves before the two have sex.
  • A particularly disgusting example appeared on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit: a man who hid cameras inside public toilets.
  • In the Lifetime Movie of the Week Video Voyeur: The Susan Wilson Story (Based on a True Story), a woman becomes suspicious and uneasy as to how her neighbor knows things about her and her family that he couldn't possibly know. Her husband searches their attic and find cameras installed in the ceilings of their bedroom and bathroom. Even worse, when reviewing the tapes at the police station, she finds a different tape of the bathroom in his house, where he's filmed the various neighborhood women who he's invited to come over and use his swimming pool/Jacuzzi.
    • In another, The Stranger Beside Me note , a young woman is horrified to learn that her husband is this after he's arrested. It gets even worse when she learns that he's also a Serial Rapist.
  • The L Word: Mark, Shane and Jenny's housemate in Season 2, is allowed to make a documentary on lesbian life but then places hidden cameras throughout the house. He records Shane having sex with multiple women (one of which Mark hired to seduce her) and intimate private conversations. Jenny finds out and is coldly furious, saying it was "rapey", asking him to speak with his sisters about how they'd react to this. He initially planned to sell the film as a "lesbians gone wild" porn flick to a sleazy company, though Mark later breaks the contract after he's gotten close with them, removing the cameras and apologizing to Jenny. Shane reacts by slapping him, but is more forgiving, though Jenny flatly rejects Mark's attempted apology.
  • In the Major Crimes episode "Open Line", an uber-sleazy photographer is forced to reveal that he's this in order to prove himself innocent of the murder that the team is investigating—he's been using spyware to spy on his various models through the webcams in their computers, and as such, witnessed the girl being beaten to death by her abusive boyfriend.
  • in Malcolm in the Middle, Malcolm ends up falsely accused of this by a new neighbor kid. When being grilled about it by the police, he protests that nobody would want to peep on the neighbors since almost everyone is unattractive and middle aged. Hal then disturbs everyone by providing a more accurate and detailed explanation of the psychology behind peeping.
  • Married... with Children:
    • Bud has drilled a hole into the shower room to watch girls shower. Al says, "That's low, son." Bud hangs his head in shame. Al continues, "No, the hole is too low, all you'll see is their knees. Drill it higher!"
    • When the Bundys had a hot french exchange student living in their garage Bud drilled a hole to peek. Or as he put it, he built a "home entertainment system".
    • Another episode has a Peeping Tom making his way through the neighborhood, peeping at everyone but Peggy. Al seeks to restore her self-esteem by disguising himself as the peeper. Unfortunately, it gets him caught and beaten up by the gang of vigilante women who've been spied on.
    • The entire family is this when Steve returns and sneaks into Marcy's bedroom, only to find her new husband Jefferson. Cut to the Bundys gleefully watching the ensuing fight, complete with video cameras and popcorn.
  • The characters on M*A*S*H frequently refer to a hole in the nurse's shower tent.
  • Brian the peeping Tom on Maury.
  • Midsomer Murders: In "The Great and the Good", the first victim of the week is a peeping tom who is spying on the attractive local schoolteacher. As it turns out, his voyeurism is only tangentially connected to the reason for his murder, but it does serve as a useful Red Herring.
  • Played for Laughs on My Name Is Earl. Back when Earl and Joy were married, and Joy was pregnant with either Dodge or Earl Jr., a rumor circulated around the trailer park's women about a peeping tom terrorizing the neighborhood. The peeping tom was actually Earl, attempting to locate and steal a neighbor's new big-screen TV set. Joy tried all week to get the peeping tom to look at her because she was feeling unhappy about the way she looked. In order to make her feel better (and start having more sex with him), Earl paid his bug-eyed friend Donny to peek through the window. Unfortunately for Donny, Joy's excited shouts alerted the other women of the trailer park, who proceeded to beat him up. In particular, one woman smashed a potted fern on his head, leaving a piece of terracotta lodged permanently under his scalp.
  • Niles from The Nanny does this on occasion, such as "just happening" to be polishing the keyhole to Maxwell's office when Maxwell is auditioning women. He can also often be found cleaning the hallway outside Fran's room when her door is open. She knows he does it,note  but seems to have decided he's harmless and to let it slide.
  • Birkhoff from Nikita spied on Alex as she worked out by hacking her apartment security camera. Given the context, she is more creeped out that Division could have been spying on her all along than by his peeping.
  • A Saturday Night Live Christmas sketch was a musical bit putting a twist on "I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus". The final verse of the song has the singer herself note that she discovered her own enjoyment of "watching people's private lives".
  • In the movie Seeds of Yesterday, Bart takes advantage of a window that overlooks his swimming pool to watch his adopted sister Cindy swim and sunbathe. She tauntingly waves to him when she catches him.
  • The "Pilot" episode of Shasta McNasty centers around roommates Scott, Dennis and Randy being Cindy Margolis' peeping Toms.
  • In an episode of The Suite Life of Zack & Cody, Zack accidentally causes slight damage to the wall of another suite. When he and Cody are punished to fix it with Arwin, he misunderstands Arwin's instructions and manages to damage the wall so badly, it breaks through to the other side where the girls' soccer team are. He, Cody and Bob proceed to make two more holes in the wall and spy on the girls, getting poked in the eye and even more trouble with Mr. Moseby for it.
    Mr. Moseby: Oh pish posh, you people were peeping!!
  • One episode of Taxi shows a far more realistic result of this Trope. After Louie spies on Elaine changing clothes in the ladies room through a hole drilled through the wall separating it from the men's room, she catches him in the act when he tries a second time (by jabbing him in the eye when he tries) and then threatening his boss with a lawsuit; Louie ends up fired. (Later in the episode, he manages to get Elaine to forgive him after she asks him if he's ever been publicly humiliated. He can, in fact, relate, claiming it happens every time he has to buy new clothes, seeing as he has to shop in the boy's department.)
  • This Country: In the episode 'Peeping Tom', Martin Mucklowe is arrested for allegedly peeping, and it's not the first time:
    "I peeped once, in '78, and I didn't like it. I didn't like it one slice. And I vowed to myself to never peep again. Tell a lie— I peeped just once more. Just to make sure I didn't like it. That was in '89. And I didn't like it that time, neither."
  • The White Lotus: Olivia follows her friend Paula out to see who she's meeting, then briefly watches as she's having sex with a young man outside.
  • The X-Files episode "Red Museum" features a man who secretly records everyone living in his building from inside their bathrooms.

  • The protagonist of the Music Video for "867-5309" spies on Jenny through her window, having become obsessed with her after a passing encounter in a bar. Averted in the song itself, in which he's never actually seen Jenny, only a tempting phone number he's never worked up the nerve to call.
  • The electro-swing artist Jamie Berry actually produced a song called "Peeping Tom", sung by his collaborator Rosie Harte as though she were the focus of a, well, Peeping Tom. In the song, she feels raunchy enough to actually give him what he wants, so the song mentions a Dress Hits Floor scene … but it's never specified what he's seeing, something not lost on YouTube commenters who've filled in the blanks with outrageous suggestions (her being supposedly a ladyboy being just one of them).
  • 'Voyeur' by blink-182:
    I wish she'd be more kind now / I'm out of luck 'cause the shades are pulled down / I've seen everything there is to be shown / I followed her all the way home.
  • The YouTube Poop music video The Death of Eleanor Gravy by cs188 (requires age verification), which employs Manipulative Editing on the song Eleanor Rigby, rather graphically paints Father McKenzie as one of these early in the song.
    Father McKenzie peeps in the window
    At Eleanor Rigby.
    Look at him wanking
    In a jar by the door.
    Watching her naked in the night.
    What the fuck?
  • Evanescence's Snow White Queen hints that the subject of the song is being watched.
    Undress in the dark and hide from you all of you
  • George Formby's "When I'm Cleaning Windows" and his other songs about window-cleaning are all about this.
    All day up this ladder I'm as busy as can be,
    It's not my fault I see a lot of things I shouldn't see.
    At eight o'clock a girl she wakes,
    At five past eight a bath she takes,
    At ten past eight my ladder breaks!
    When I'm cleanin' windows!
  • 'Sleepwalker' by The Kinks.
    Ev'rybody got secrets that they wanna hide./When midnight comes along, I take a look inside./Don't go talkin' in your sleep:/I might come in for a peep, Oh yeah.'
  • The Lonely Island: Played for equal amounts of laughs and squick in "Do the Creep", which features Jorm, Akiva, and Andy sitting on a tree limb to peep through a window, and Nicki Minaj hiding in a locker to watch boys change after gym.
  • Mentioned in Katy Perry's "California Gurls", where "boys break their necks tryin' to creep a little sneak peek" at the girls lounging in bikinis on the beach.
  • Placebo have a song called 'Peeping Tom', which focuses on the psychology of the titular character, who has been "On my own for far too long".
  • Helen Reddy's hit "Angie Baby" has a Peeping Tom spying into the bedroom of a mentally disturbed girl. He manages to invite himself into her room ... which turns out to be a big mistake on his part.
  • "Persiana Americana" by Argentinian group Soda Stereo is about a peeping Tom who's watching his pretty neighbor through his window's blinds (known as "persiana americana" in Latin-America) and wonders if she's leading him on.
  • The Music Video for Dwight Twilly's "Girls" takes place in the locker rooms of a football team and their cheerleaders. Both sides peep into the other locker room though a couple of peepholes.

    Mythology and Folklore 
  • Older Than Steam: The Trope Namer is a tailor named Tom from a 17th-century version of the legend of Lady Godiva, who is the only person in town to go against the Lady's proclamation and spies on her nude horseback ride through town. According to the legend, Tom bored a hole through his window shutters in order to catch a glimpse of Godiva and was struck blind for the trouble.
    • In some versions, Tom forgets (or hasn't heard), and opens a shutter for light to work by.
  • Older Than Print: The famous French mermaid, Melusine. She is found (with the appearance of an ordinary young maiden) bathing in a river by a human, and the two fall in Love at First Sight. She agrees to marry him, on the condition that he not peek at her while she bathes (or in some versions, on Saturdays). He agrees, and their Fourth-Date Marriage goes off without a hitch; they raise several (either demonic or demigod, Depending on the Writer) children together, and Melusine builds her husband a beautiful chateau. One day, his curiosity and/or lust gets the better of him, and he peeks in on her bathtime. Melusine is *not* happy, to say the least. Moral of the story? Never make promises you won't be able to keep, especially to mermaids.
    • It should be noted that Melusine's own (human) father broke a similar promise made to her mother Pressyne. Pressyne, however, was satisfied with a Toilet Seat Divorce.
  • Older Than Feudalism: Never peep on an actual goddess, or you may pay with your life. According to one myth, this is what the hunter Actaeon did, coming across Artemis while bathing, and then watching. When the goddess discovered him, she was enraged, and turned him into a stag, then set his own hounds upon him, who tore him apart.


    Video Games 

    Visual Novels 
  • Moe Mortelli from Daughter for Dessert has his moments.
    Mortelli: Pics or it didn’t happen.
  • In preparation for the upcoming “appreciation party” for the protagonist, Dennis from Double Homework rigs his yacht with hidden cameras. They are positioned to collect compromising photos of all the girls, and the protagonist suspects that Dennis got them all before he himself manages to find and remove them all.
  • In Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice, this becomes an important plot point in Case 2. During the show, someone with a camera was hanging around backstage spying on Trucy's assistant Bonny de Famme. After the incident, he sent the latter a copy of the tape for some reason. After watching it for a while, Bonny notices that something was different between the tape of her and the show footage on the news. She later submits it to the court, and after close examination, there's a small extra bit in the Tom's tape not present in the "official" recording, revealing that someone edited out the part of Trucy's trick where she swaps the sword.
  • Takada, one of the victims of the Killer Peach in Spirit Hunter: NG, is revealed during investigation to have a secret stash of photos. Said photos are of his female coworkers in various states of undress, taken by secret cameras in the restrooms and other hidden locations. Akira instantly loses sympathy for him when he finds them.
  • In the Tokimeki Memorial series, if you're a member of a club, you'll have an option to go peep at the bathrooms during the summer's training camp. You'll have to choose among three windows, which randomly grant you safe-for-work CGs of cute girls or ugly macho men bathing. Peeping has a hefty price though: All the girls you know will have a severe drop in affection towards you, particularly those in the same club as yours, if you peeped at girls; and if you watched at men, your Stress parameter sharply goes up.
  • In True Love Junai Monogatari, the game pretty much starts with the Player Character and the Bromantic Foil trying to peep on the girls of the swimming team. The captain of the team and prospect Love Interest, Passionate Sports Girl Chiemi Fujimoto, will catch the PC, who's given the option of either telling her that he was cleaning up or flat-out admitting his peeping; in any way, she lets him go but warns him that she won't have mercy the next time.

  • In Homestuck, Caliborn apparently gains access to a terminal that allows him to view other characters anywhere, even in the shower. Jane is understandably creeped out when he gleefully informs her of this.
  • Karate Bears peep.
  • In Misfile, Ash apparently had a fantasy about peeping into the girls' locker room. However, after a Gender Bender transformation, it loses its appeal and Ash is squicked out when she finds herself on the receiving end of it actually happening.
  • One Nodwick story featured a Goddess of Peeping Toms, who ironically, was often the victim of them.
  • In Level 30 Psychiatry, this strip deconstructs the sexy pictures of Samus in her underwear in the Metroid endings.
    Samus: I spend a week blowing up space pirates and escaping exploding planets and what do I get at home? A perv on my window, snapping pictures of me in my underwear.

    Western Animation 
  • In the Batman: The Animated Series episode "Joker's Favor", Everyman Charlie Collin is spied by the Joker for two years to ensure he will not break his Deal with the Joker.
  • Bob's Burgers:
    • In "Bad Tina", Tina shows new friend Tammy a peephole into the boys' locker room - down at floor level where all they can see are feet.
    • In "Nude Beach", the kids make a business out of letting other kids peep on the nude beach from behind the bushes on a nearby clifftop.
  • Family Guy:
    • Quagmire naturally. In one episode, he is charged with peeping in the ladies' room.
    • Once Chris gets in trouble for peeping in the girls' locker room at school.
    • Lois also a drills a hole in Stewie's room so she can watch Tom Brady shower (then fights with Meg over who gets to look through it).
    • An episode has Peters lose his memory. Lois tries to jog his memory without result. When she catches him peeking in on her while changing, she assures him it's alright since they are married.
    • An older Cutaway Gag involved Peter getting caught peeping in the women's showers a la Porky's... only for the pan-out to reveal he was staring through a board with a hole bored through it while standing in full view of the women.
  • On an episode of The Flintstones Fred was mistaken for one, and a funny case of Comically Missing the Point ensued.
    Woman: A peeping Tom!
    Fred: No lady, my name's Fred!
    Woman: A peeping Fred!
  • G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero; the episode "The Gamemaster" has a scene where a robot used by the eponymous villain captures Lady Jaye while she's changing in a store dressing room. (A comment made by his Robot Buddy causes him to snap, "I do not have a crush on her, Koko!")
  • A Looney Tunes Sylvester/Tweety cartoon had Tweety exclaim, "I taught I taw a peeping tomcat!"
  • The Simpsons:
    • Groundskeeper Willie outs himself as one when he reveals he has a videotape proving that Homer didn't sexually harass a college girl.
    Willie: "Homer! I love amateur video, and your show is the most amateur video I ever saw. My hobby is secretly videotaping couples in cars. I dinna come forward because in this country, it makes you look like a pervert — but every single Scottish person does it!"
    • The ladies call Moe Szyslak "Hey you from behind the bushes".
  • Spoofed in Futurama, wherein Bender and the members of Robot House peep through the window of the girls’ dorm… to look at their under-maintenance computer.
  • T.V. of Tomorrow, one of the Tex Avery MGM Cartoons, details a specific model of television for Peeping Toms, with a viewscreen modeled after a keyhole.


Peeping Bubbie

Flapjack catches Bubbie spying on Peppermint Larry, who is having marital difficulties with Candy Wife.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (7 votes)

Example of:

Main / NotWhatItLooksLike

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