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Troubled Fetal Position / Western Animation

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  • Occurs a few times throughout Kim Possible, such as Drakken assuming this position when Shego freaks out in the lair from the Moodulator and when Ron locks himself in his panic room.
    Drakken: Uh... did I forget your birthday? Is that what this is about? Because... I'm scared... (sucks thumb)
  • Teen Titans:
    • Raven, to help cement her earlier status as a loner.
    • Terra too, in mid-air, after losing control of her powers.
  • Total Drama Island:
    • Tyler goes into this position when he has to face his worst fear. Chickens.
    • Scott when Dawn guesses that he wasn't held enough as a child, and at times when he has to face against Fang.
  • Family Guy:
    • Meg Griffin does this occasionally.
    • In "Dial Meg For Murder" Peter is shown in this position after being raped by a bull.
    • In "PTV", Stewie ends up in this position when Peter poops off a bridge and it lands on Lois' car while he's riding in it.
      Stewie: Turn off the windshield wipers. They don't work, they're just making it worse.
    • In "Stewie Loves Lois", when Stewie takes Rupert to the park, he gets stolen by a dog. When Lois gets Rupert back, it's shown that Stewie has gone into this.
  • Code Lyoko:
    • Aelita, from times to times.
    • Odd had one in "Tip-Top Shape" when he was about to die. He got better.
    • Ulrich in "Cold War" when he thought that Yumi died and he saw that he had no way to call Jeremie.
  • The Fairly OddParents:
    • In one of the original Oh Yeah! Cartoons shorts, Vicky is reduced to one after she keeps seeing multiple Timmys.
    • The Crimson Chin undergoes one of these, complete with thumb-sucking, when Timmy reveals to him that he is a comic book character. It became so bad that an entire issue centered around him in that position. Luckily, Timmy helps him get better.
    • As does Cosmo whenever someone mentions Super Toilet. "So... much... clogging!"
  • SpongeBob SquarePants:
    • Played for laughs with Squidward in the episode "Band Geeks", after another screw-up by his slapdash marching band.
    • Played for drama with Squidward in "Enchanted Tiki Dreams", where he's curled up under a chair inside his house, in a pool of tears, lamenting about how he can never catch a break. In fact, he seems to do this quite a bit. It's kind of adorable.
    • Squidward does this again in "SB-129" when he becomes overwhelmed by time travel, curling up and then beginning to utter "FUTURE!" as he convulses on the floor. It takes SpongeTron dropping a brick on his head to snap him out of it.
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    • SpongeBob does this for a whole episode in which he becomes afraid to go outside, so he decides to live inside his house for the rest of his life. Thankfully, he got over it.
    • One episode had Kevin the Sea Cucumber sits in a fetal position and cry for his mommy and blankie when attacked by a King Jellyfish. The other Jellyspotters join in shortly until SpongeBob saves them all.
    • A random guy does this in "Sponge-Cano!" while everyone panics.
  • As Told by Ginger:
    • Ginger does the Troubled Fetal Position a few times, especially in the episode where she and Darien broke up.
    • Considering how socially awkward and shy Macie is, she often ends curled up.
  • The Simpsons:
    • Jokingly done in one episode where Homer writes a bad review for a restaurant and is ridiculed for it. To cope he is later seen sitting in the fetal position in the tub, looking on traumatized with wide eyes as he crazily scrubs at his skin repeating, "Still not clean, stink of failure still on me! Still not clean, Still not clean!"
    • "Lisa's First Word'' had Bart getting really terrified of a scary clown bed and in the morning he is shown rocking back and forth in the fetal position saying "Can't sleep, clown will eat me. Can't sleep, clown will eat me." over and over.
    • Bart was curled up in "Camp Krusty" when the kids were in a summer camp from hell: "Krusty is coming. Krusty is coming. Krusty is coming..."
    • In the episode where Homer is publicly and wrongly accused of molesting their babysitter, he tries to watch TV in the Troubled Fetal Position. However, his television hates him.
    • In one episode, Homer has to give a speech in the nuclear power plant (Burns being among them) and is nervous, so Marge suggests imagining them naked. Homer freaks out, and Marge amends this to them wearing funny hats. This ends up being worse, and Homer rolls on the ground while holding himself in a troubled fetal position.
  • On an episode of Gargoyles, Goliath was fooled by a hologram of Angela taking this position.
  • In the Hey Arnold! episode "Das Subway", after the subway train breaks down, the conductor eventually confesses over the train's intercom system that he's curled up in the fetal position under the console.
  • Wasp of Transformers Animated is doing this after having escaped from the Autobot stockade where he'd been unjustly imprisoned for what is implied to be a century at least. Flashbacks show him to be a snarky Jerk Jock, his whole escape is done with style and flair (including a quick salute to his former drill instructor), and the episode ends with him hiding behind some wreckage, clutching his knees and rocking back and forth, muttering to himself, a broken shell of the 'bot he once was. Autobots are harsh.
  • Amalia from Wakfu, especially in episode 25 when she feels the destruction of the forest by Nox's infernal machines.
  • 2D of Gorillaz has been huddled like this in his room at Plastic Beach for several months, in terror of the whale outside his window.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
    • Rainbow Dash is cocky and justifiably proud of her flying abilities, and wants to be sure everyone sees how awesome she is. In "Sonic Rainboom", she's reduced to shivering in a Troubled Fetal Position when she loses confidence and realises she's bitten off more than she can chew in building her performance in a major competition on a trick so difficult she almost certainly won't be able to repeat it, meaning she would fail spectacularly in front of everybody.
    • In "Lesson Zero", Twilight Sparkle curls on a bench, but the way she strokes her tail at the same time is unexpectedly cute.
    • In "For Whom The Sweetie Belle Toils", the final scene of Sweetie Belle's nightmare shows a completely insane Rarity rocking in this position in her darkened and dilapidated boutique.
    • In "Do Princesses Dream Of Magic Sheep?", Rainbow Dash gets hit again after the Tantabus turns her dream of beating up Changelings nonstop into a cutesy field with a pink sky and lullaby-singing sunflowers.
  • On the Young Justice episode "Home Front" Artemis, the least experienced member of the team, goes into this when the rest of her True Companions have been captured and face imminent death.
  • In the much loved Disney series Recess, Miss Finster comes with a new type of playground punishement- the box, which is just a square painted on the blacktop. T.J. ends up having to get put in the box shortly after it's announced. At first he laughs at it, but it eventually breaks him. Ten minutes later, Miss Finster finds the poor boy in the fetal position singing "This Old Man".
  • Rugrats: Stu during his Sanity Slippage moment in "Angelica Breaks A Leg".
  • The Phineas and Ferb episode "Bully Bromance Breakup" sees Phineas doing this while being dragged up a mountain in a harness. (He went into Heroic BSoD mode because Baljeet put the kibosh on him and Ferb inventing anything to help them climb.)
  • There are quite a few in Adventure Time. Notably, there's Incendium, when Finn is rejected by Princess Bubblegum. There's also Too Young, when Lemongrab does this after Finn and PB beat him up.
  • Happens to Sheila in the Dungeons & Dragons (1983) series, when she faces her biggest fear ever: being completely alone.
  • Pops up in an episode of X-Men: The Animated Series. Morph, who'd just returned to the team after a lengthy absence following a near-death experience, learns the Sentinels, which were responsible for said near-death experience are back, and has a PTSD-like freak out. While talking with Professor Xavier about it later, they're attacked by Sentinels intent on kidnapping Xavier. Morph attempts to fight them off but freezes in fear allowing them to take the Professor. When the other X-Men arrive Wolverine finds him like this, crying.
  • Justice League:
  • Gravity Falls: Mabel assumes this position inside her sweater after being pressured into dating Gideon too many times.
    Mabel: Mabel's not here. She's in sweater town.
    • Thompson goes into this position a few times as well; once while being attacked by a dance machine in "The Inconveniencing", and again while getting ready for another year of high school in "Dipper and Mabel vs. The Future".
  • Peridot from Steven Universe adopts this position a lot. Especially after being captured by the Crystal Gems in "Catch and Release", she spends a big portion of the episode curled up in a corner. Her most notable moment of this, however, is when she manages to accidentally join the Crystal Gems, having chewed out and insulted one of the highest-ranking people on the Gem Homeworld.
  • The Powerpuff Girls:
    • Bubbles adopted this position in "Shut The Pup Up" after being apparently insulted by Talking Dog, all the while doing the Madness Mantra of "I'm not a chubby crybaby, I'm not a chubby crybaby...."
    • Blossom does this in "The Mane Event" after everyone laughed at her Traumatic Haircut.
  • The Powerpuff Girls (2016): Blossom did this in "Painbow" when she wasn't the only one who got an A+ on a diorama.
  • Quack Quack from Kaeloo does this whenever somebody mentions the death of somebody's parents, since his own parents were killed when he was still in an egg.
  • Ezra Bridger from Star Wars Rebels goes into this pose when he wakes up after tapping into The Dark Side of The Force for the first time.
  • Mao Mao: Heroes of Pure Heart: Scoops does this in the episode "No Shortcuts" after the news story she worked all night on gets destroyed by a stray missile.
  • In the Glitch Techs episode, Castle Crawl, Miko assumes this position while freaking out over the fact that she never actually beat Castlestein and fearing that her lack of knowledge on how to proceed means that she and Five are stuck in the Mapper Glitch forever.


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