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Uncanny Valley / Toys

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  • The Big Comfy Couch generally averts this, as even though the main characters are clowns, the make-up used was minimal that it was easy to tell that they're humans playing the role. And then, there's this Loonette doll. With a voice chip inside. Sleep tight, kids!
  • These Reborn Baby dolls from MacPherson crafts. The photos alone are fine, because they just look like photos of babies. Having such a doll around would be like having a real baby that never moves at all, which is just horrific.
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  • Baby Born dolls are deep in the Valley, with their empty staring eyes and their faces forever frozen in an unnatural pout.
  • Resusci Annie. Don't even get us started on the baby versions of that doll. It helps that the mold for her face was based on L'Inconnue de la Seine, the death mask of an unidentified young woman who drowned in the Seine River around the late 1880s. And don't even get close to the neonate one. Augh!
  • Baby Alive.
    • Though most of the current versions of the doll look cartoonish enough to avert this trope.
  • The My Friend Cayla doll. As if the idea of making an Internet-connected talking doll isn't disturbing enough.
  • Baby Jake is yet another weird show from The BBC, done in a similar style to Wonder Pets! (still photography combined with computer-generated animation). The show is creepy enough as is. And then there's the doll, which talks, no less.note 
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  • Almost any realistic doll based on a baby, really. This is likely because babies are such twitchy expressive energy pods that seeing one of these inactive homonculi triggers some deep instinct to save the life of a baby that suddenly ceased moving. Or maybe they just really are that creepy (the fact they're often the first things demons possess in literature certainly doesn't help).
  • Any doll that has eyes weighted so they open and close, especially the ones that suddenly pop open at the last second after picking them up.
  • The My Twinn dolls. Parents send pictures of their children with hair samples to get a doll that is designed to look like the kid.
    • The author David Lubar heard of these type of dolls. He published a book of short stories, with one of these stories being that the doll was treated like another daughter. This freaked out the original daughter a lot, but the mother didn't notice that IT'S STILL JUST A DOLL. Then there's the added bonus that it functioned like a voodoo doll, hurting the girl who owned it when she tried to destroy it until the mom took it to be repaired.
  • Asian ball joint dolls. Ye gods, they can be spooky-looking — especially if you weren't expecting one. In particular, the Johnny Depp minimee — which resembles Johnny Depp, yes, but in a disturbingly static way. Just slightly out of proportion — and did we mention it's on about one third the scale?
    • For those who've never seen one before this site is one of the biggest suppliers. And if you think that's creepy then you haven't seen Pullip dolls, which are like regular BJDs, but Super-Deformed. (They can also be made to look like Anime characters.)
    • While some find them creepy, others find them cute, and most seem to skirt the edges of the valley. Not so for the apparently defunct Paper Moon Dolls, whose sole business was creating life-sized BJDs. Again, creepiness factor varies for most of them, but they did a line of Japanese anime-style dolls which slide rapidly down into the valley. Something that looks cute and attractive in 2d seems to really ratchet up the creepy factor when expanded into the third dimension.
  • Baby Laugh A-Lot. From the doll's creepy grin, its maniacal-sounding laugh, the creepy movements of the girls in the ad and what sounds like the narrator slowly descending into madness, everything about this commercial seems made to be creepy.
  • The Barbie Island Princess Rosella Karaoke Styling Head is kind of in the Valley as-is. When someone turns it into a SkeleBot 9000, it may or may not have exited the Valley for you, but good lord preserve us anyway.
  • Hot Toys, a Hong Kong-based company specialising in 12 inch collectible action figures, have become famous for the astounding likenesses they produce. Since they mostly make figures licensed from films, actors such as Brad Pitt, Mickey Rourke, Scarlett Johannson and Arnold Schwarzenneger have become immortalised as Hot Toys figures. Their most creepy products are arguably those of the Joker, as played by Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight. Check it out and tell me you're not even mildly disturbed. A big part of this is the "Parallel Eyeball Rolling System", which allows the figures' eyeballs to move. Brr. Most of the time however, Hot Toys' work is more awesome than creepy, thankfully.
  • Perfect Petzzz Sure they look cute, but then you realize that your cute puppy/kitten will never wake up....
  • How about a piggy bank...with a face.
  • Teddy Ruxpin is notorious for this. It's not the character design that pushed the toy into the valley though. The feature that pushed the toy into the uncanny valley here is how his mouth moved combined with his static facial expression. In other words, an inactive Teddy Ruxpin is fine. A working one isn't.
  • A company in Japan makes custom dolls and action figures with an exact replica of your head/face on it. Looks like something from straight out of a horror anime.
  • Baby Say 'N See from Mattel in 1965. According to Mike Mozart's review of the doll, she was possibly the inspiration for Chucky. Some of the things she said would simply exacerbate the creepiness.
    "I can see in the dark. Can you?
    "My eyes are magic. I can see through anything."
    "Wouldn't it be fun if you were a doll like me?"
  • The My Little Pony: Equestria Girls prototype dolls look jarringly different from in the actual movie, and from the show it was spun off from. The problem lies in the fact that the dolls attempt to look "sexy" with mascara, lipstick and face paint, while the characters in the animated movie lack the makeup and retain at least some of the cuteness of their equine counterparts. The use of unnatural skin colors such as bright purple and blue also add to the "wrongness" of the dolls.
  • Ty Beanie Ballz can be absolutely disturbing, thanks to their overly large eyes and round bodies.
  • There were a bunch of these.....clown/jester/mime hybrid dolls made which have odd-proportioned, over-painted faces with Please-put-me-out-of-my-misery expressions, while playing an Ominous Music Box Tune. Have a video.
  • My Little Pony (G3).5 retooled the G3 ponies into hideously deformed animesque creatures that barely resemble ponies at all. Taken Up to Eleven by the Newborn Cuties.
  • Any doll line based on a Real Life celebrity. There's a very good reason most of them don't last in stores very long.
  • For some reason, somebody thought it was a good idea to make a talking doll of Macaulay Culkin from Home Alone. It has a soft cloth body but a hard plastic head, which don't mix well and make his creepy facial expression even worse. And with age, the doll's voicebox becomes distorted, making his lines sound demonic. See Stuart Ashen be creeped out by it here
  • Bratz dolls can be this once you realize how distorted their faces and bodies are.
  • A Belle doll based on Beauty and the Beast (2017) quickly gained notoriety for being creepy as hell — essentially Emma Watson's photorealistic head, with unearthly pale skin, freckles that look more like a skin condition more than anything, and an absolutely gigantic forehead, pasted on top of a disproportionately small body. For a character referred to in the title as a "Beauty" and who is played by a very pretty actor, they could have done a lot better.
  • This Beast Boy toy from Teen Titans Go! seems to be cute, until you look at the eyes, which are supposed to change emotion but wind up being creepy-looking ones.
  • From the anime Kodocha, we have a Syabecot in the likeness of Sana. Because it can talk, the mouth of the doll is open, making for a rather creepy face for what could have been a cute doll.
  • This Mary Ingalls doll based on Little House on the Prairie. Even some doll collectors find the face rather upsetting, to say the least.
  • Police x Warrior LovePatraina, a tokusatsu series, has a fairy mascot named Lovepyoko that was turned into a toy. While promotional images promised a cute-looking toy, some were understandably shocked when the actual product wound up looking like this.
  • As they are based on inhuman robots, you would expect that the Transformers would be exempt from this effect. As it turns out, it's still possible to produce a few deeply unsettling toys even when the toys in question are robots. Wheelie's mixture of scraggly misshapen limbs, bug eyes, and gap teeth give the unpleasant feeling of something organic doing a terrible job of trying to be a robot in turn doing a terrible job of trying to be a toy car. Dead End's gangly porportions are not an issue, but what is a problem is the mixture of organic lower jaw full of irregular teeth paired with a head and face that bears a few structural resemblances to a rodent skull. The too-organic nature of his design is reflected in his fictional appearances, which afflict him with a sort of robotic vampirism. This means the effect is actually intentional—he is meant to cause the unease one would feel upon seeing something subtly inhuman in real life.
  • This Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Sing-A-Ma-Jig looks rather creepy, as not only does it have an unusual mouth, said mouth displays odd-looking teeth when it's open.
  • Any bootleg version of a popular toyline or character tends to be this, as they will look just like the real deal, but have features that set them apart from their genuine counterparts, rendering a creepy appearance.
  • The L.O.L. Surprise! OMG dolls are meant to be cool teenage girls with some pastel colors, but have large eyes and a Super-Deformed look not unlike their baby counterparts, which results in something unnerving to say the least.


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