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File:Scolopendra Gigantea 7775.jpg

For many people, spiders are scary and disgusting. For many other people, snakes are scary and disgusting. So, what happens when you put together the two species?

In fiction centipedes, caterpillar and similar creatures are sometimes used as a fancy alternative for the everyday Giant Spider or Scary Scorpions, even moreso in eastern fiction. Sometimes, a human-centipede hybrid will appear, usually sporting multiple limbs and venomous bite. In Video Game settings, expect to see it detatch its own body parts and/or cutting one body segment at time, as if it's some kind of organic train. Another apparent power is their ability of curling up like a wheel/ball and roll over their foe.

Compare Big Creepy-Crawlies, Attack of the Killer Whatever and Segmented Serpent. Also Bug War if they come in mass.

Examples of Creepy Centipedes include:

Anime and Manga

  • In Naruto Sasuke kills an oversized centipede in the Death Forest. Later he realize that they're trapped in an illusion when he recognize the same dead bug. Also, one of Pain's summons is a colossal centipede... who's offed by Sakura.
    • In the anime he summoned numerous centipedes, one of which fought Shikamaru.
  • The very first Youkai appeared in Inuyasha was the Mukade Joro (Mistress Centipede), who was partially woman. Several huge centipedes appears as recurring Cannon Fodder among Naraku's hordes.
  • Loly's release in Bleach is called "Escolopendra", and gives her poisonous Combat Tentacles looking like giant centipedes.
  • Yaiba meets a Centipede-Man during the Underworld Arc, wielding several swords at once. However, despite his fierce look he was a mere Elite Mook.
  • Epoida from One Piece is a minor character who appears to be able to turn in a giant caterpillar-man. One of the movies shows a huge centipede-like Sea Monster amd several of the recurring Sea Kings have a centipedean design.
  • After Jubei in Ninja Scroll the Series splits a random giant mook open with his Razor Wind, it turns out that it had a giant centipede inside it. Then Jubei uses his Razor Wind again and that's that.
  • Astro Boy goes up against a robot monster known as Gadem in various continuities. He's usually a Combining Mecha made out of 47 headless androids, but in the 2003 series he was redesigned as a collection of gold and jewels morphed into the shape of a centipede by a powerful electromagnet.

Comic Books

  • In Lucifer, one assassin antagonist is a demon with a humanoid torso on a centipede body.


  • The Human Centipede, despite not involving a real one, brings the "Hybrid" concept to a new horrorific level.
  • In Attack of the Clones, after the failed assassination attempt with explosives, Zam tries to assassinate Amidala with two centipede-like bugs.
  • There's a giant centipedes scene in the Peter Jackson version of King Kong.
  • The Sea Serpent in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader sports a centipedean body with lots of tiny legs.
  • The low budget B-Movie Centipede! involves a giant, mutated centipede along with her spawn dwelling in a cave in India.
  • In Monsters, Inc., Randall Boggs is a lizard/snake-y creature with a long body and multiple pairs of legs. Basically, his design is a hybrid of creepy centipedes and Reptiles Are Abhorrent.
    • The "locomotive" for P.T. Flea's circus train from A Bugs Life (also by Pixar) is actually a large centipede.
  • A "copper centipede" is mentioned during the song "Golden Afternoon" from Alice in Wonderland.
  • A giant centipede can be seen chasing the explorers out of an underwater cave at one point during their journey to Atlantis in Atlantis: The Lost Empire.
  • Centipede Horror, in which we have an Evil Sorcerer who uses centipedes as killing tools, at one point making a woman vomit some.


  • In one James Bond novel (Dr. No), the killer tries to murder Bond with a poisonous centipede. In the movie adaptation it was discarded in favor of a tarantula. Probably they thought that the audience ignored that centipedes are poisonous.
  • Newsflesh has a scene in Deadline wherein we discover that Rebecca "Becks" Atherton, who cheerfully goes into zones where zombies are still a threat, cannot deal with centipedes, even in closed-in lab setting. Just seeing them makes her flinch and twitch.
  • Averted with the heroic giant centipede in James and the Giant Peach.
  • Piers Anthony's Xanth series has nickelpedes. They're centipedes with 500 legs and pincers that can gouge out a slice of flesh the size of a U.S. nickel coin. They're very dangerous in large numbers.
  • Prince Dhojakt from The Prism Pentad is part man and part cylops. That means that he has the body of a giant centipede from the knees down, and also unusual maws and bulging eyes.
  • The Taxxons in Animorphs.
  • The Hundred Eyed Demon King from Journey to the West is a centipede-based demon, who can master light and fire and fight with a sword. Sun Wukon is forced to summon forth Pilanpo Boddhisatva, to whom he surrenders.


  • The Oomukade (Great Centipede) from Japanese Folklore was said to prey on dragon's hatchlings and being as large as a mountain. It was slain by Hidesato Tawaratota who pierced his eye with an arrow made wet with drool.

Newspaper Comics

  • Calvin almost learns how creepy centipedes are the hard way while playing a game of Twenty Questions involving guessing what he has in his hands.

 Hobbes: Is it loathsome?

Calvin: Yes!

Hobbes: Is it some big centipede with poison pinchers?

Calvin: ...Centipedes have poison pinchers?

Hobbes: I think so.

Calvin: [Climbing onto Hobbes looking very scared] Man, it's a good thing you guessed it so fast!

Tabletop Games

  • Dungeons and Dragons features huge centipedes and also swarms of regular centipedes. They're pretty much on the top of the giant vermin heap thanks to their potent venom.
    • The Dark Sun settings has a couple.
      • Cilops, huge, one-eyed caterpillars with an amazing sense of smell.
      • The Megapede is 100-150 feet long and has a poisonous bite. They hide beneath the sands of Athas, rising above them only to devour other creatures.
    • The stegocentipede from D&D 1st edition is a colossal monster with an armor-plated hide and dorsal spikes.
    • In 3rd Edition centipedes could grow up to 120 feet long.

Video Games

  • The Voracious Centipede boss from American McGee's Alice. The wise Caterpillar is a notably aversion, as he's a good guy.
  • Several Oomukade appear as a boss fight in Kisuke's story mode in Muramasa: The Demon Blade. In that case, the body of the monster function as his own health bar.
  • Huge caterpillar appears as enemies in Metal Slug 3.
  • In Onimusha: Dawn of Dreams Mitsunari Ishida has a centipede theme in his clothes and armor, and can turn his arm in a bunch of centipedes. As Claudius he's a gargantuan, flying Oomukade monster with huge scythe-shaped jaws and poisonous miasma.
  • Resident Evil offers us Centurion, aka this fellow. Furthermore, the stage-two Plagas and Cephalo are centipede-like. Bosses with similar attributes include Bitores Mendez and the Popokarimu in games 4 and 5 respectively.
  • One Castlevania game has giant centipedes in the library level. The Undead Parasite from Lament of Innocence resembles a giant hybrid part caterpillar part dragon.
  • Gigapede from Devil May Cry 3 is a giant, floating centipede with huge jaws and electrical powers. He falls to pieces when slayed.
  • Command and Conquer Tiberium Wars game features a buildable centipede unit for the Scrin in the Kanes Wrath expansion where the owner can customize the centipede by making each section a different type of weapon system.
  • Parasite Eve also features a burrowing centipede as a mid-game boss. This one takes damage as a whole, but then splits into multiple independent fighting parts after taking enough damage. At least only one section can inflict poison status on the main character.
  • Contra Hard Corps for Sega Genesis also features a centipede monster early in the first level with really tall legs, only the head is vulnerable to damage.
  • Centipede and its sequel, Millipede.
  • Magna Centipede from Mega Man X 2. He can grab X with his tail and glitch him, causing X to lose his charge shot, dash and jump ability.
  • Pokémon Black and White has the Venipede line. The final evolution Scolipede is an enormous centipede, in fact it's the largest Bug-type Pokemon out there. And despite its bulk, it's fast with a speed of 112.
  • The first boss of Rocket Knight Adventure is a colossal robotic centipede that ambushed Spakster in the burning ruins of the castle.
  • Shadow Hearts Covenant has a giant, mutated, flesh-eating centipede appearing in the Wine Cellar in France.
  • In the Star Control saga we've the caterpillar-like Ur-Quan and their even nastier brothers the Kohr-Ah.
  • In Guilty Gear, Zappa, the gentleman who functions as a boarding house for ghosts, uses a twisting orb of giant centipedes as his transition between the ghosts he's using.

Web Comic

  • In Order of the Stick Pompey use a lesser Summon Monsters to call forth several giant spiders and centipedes. When Julia face them it quickly degenerates to a Shout-Out of Centipede.

Western Animation

Real Life

  • Centipedes and millipedes are poisonous. It's just that most of them in the real world are tiny and so the bite contains a (usually) negligible amount of poison.
    • An exception is the above pictured Scolopendra Gigantea, who's 30 cm long and can prey upon birds, even going so far as to prey upon things as large as bats.
  • The name "centipede" means "hundred-legged" but no centipede actually has that many legs. Their relatives the millipedes do have hundreds of legs, but their name means "thousand-legged".
    • And their species family is "myriapoda", which means "ten-thousand-legged".
  • Certain tribes use millipede poison to tip their arrows with for battle.
  • And certain species of monkey will literally use millipede secretions to get high.
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