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File:Deadguypuppet.jpg
It's like putting on a cute puppet show at your great aunt's funeral! WITH YOUR GREAT AUNT!

Killing somebody in cold blood is generally considered bad. So is desecrating their corpse or making light of their death.

...Hey! Wouldn't it be awesomely evil if we did all three at once?

Making a Dead Guy Puppet is a simple process: Simply take a corpse (preferably of somebody you've slaughtered yourself) and use him as a makeshift marionette or ventriloquist dummy. You can even make an easy-to-carry Hand Puppet variant simply by cutting off the corpse's head. Be sure you do your routine in front of the corpse's friends and family -- they'll love it!

This is usually done mostly For the Evulz and generally qualifies as a Kick the Dog action. Naturally, villains who use this tend to have a bad sense of humor.

Compare Of Corpse He's Alive, where the puppeteer is actually trying to convince people the corpse isn't dead. Not to be confused with People Puppets.

As a Death Trope, all Spoilers will be unmarked ahead. Beware.

Examples of Dead Guy Puppet include:
  • In the Tales from the Darkside episode "No Strings", a cruel mob boss does this with the corpse of his dead rival.
  • Pictured above is Richard from Looking for Group, who not only makes a Dead Guy Puppet but also sings about it in Slaughter Your World.
  • Family Guy: Though it wasn't someone he killed, Peter finds an Indian burial ground in his backyard, including a skull. He names it "Chief Lou Diamond Phillips" and uses it as a puppet, among other things.
  • The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 from 1986: The Hitchhiker from the first movie is now a dried-up husk of a corpse named Nubbins. At first, Leatherface wears Nubbins like a costume. And then later, Choptop uses Nubbins as a puppet.

 Choptop: (as Nubbins) "Big ol' craaaazy booger!"

  • A creepy version in Dead Silence: The uncle is a marionette made from his own body.
  • The Spawn comic book spinoff The Violator features a disturbing series of scenes in which The Violator uses a guy's corpse as a puppet. The guy was a member of Cosa Nostra. At first, the corpse is fresh enough to fool the others into thinking that he's still alive so that The Violator can get the drop on the other Mafia guys. The guy's head somehow gets disconnected from the body, so that The Violator is carrying a guy's head around on his wrist, having punched through the back of the guy's head and out through his mouth. At this point, the head becomes a split personality for The Violator, and when this split personality angers The Violator, The Violator then smashes the head against the ground, mangling his own hand in the process, as it is still sticking out of the head's mouth.
  • Sluggy Freelance had Zombie-Head-on-a-Stick.
  • Ladd Russo from Baccano uses one of Chane's Lemure allies in this manner.
  • In Killer Klowns From Outer Space, one of the Klowns uses a sheriff as a ventriloquist's dummy to talk to one of the teenaged heroes, apparently shoving its hand into his back.
  • In one strip of The Far Side, a bear entertains his cubs by making two human skulls ask each other if there are bears in the cave.
  • In the film Alaska, the poachers kill a mother polar bear and capture the baby. In a later scene, they take the mother's hollowed out carcass and use it as a hand puppet to tease the baby.
  • Frisky Dingo - evil alien Killface kidnaps several PR execs to force them to help making his public announcements. When one angers him, he shoots him with a heavy caliber gun, blowing him in half...then picks up the torso-half, thrusts his hand all the way inside him until his hand is behind the corpse's jaw, and starts sarcastically "playing" him literally like a ventriloquist's dummy...for an extended period of time...in front of his twin brother who is begging him to stop. Some time later, the twin brother angers him too, so Killface shoots him in half too...then stacks the torso-half next to that of his brother, and quips "I made you a little friend". Vote Killface for President!
  • In Repo! The Genetic Opera, the Repo Man does this to a guy he's just...well...repo'd. Poor sucker.
  • In Dead And Breakfast, the villain uses the head of one of his victims as a hand puppet.
  • In The Simpsons, after digging up Jebediah Springfield to disprove the vocal Lisa Simpson's claims, Chief Wiggum tries his hand at ventriloquism with the city-founder's skull.
    • Also happens to Mr. Burns when Homer and Smithers think they've accidentally killed him. They haven't.
  • Ace Ventura: Though the Monopoly Guy is only unconscious, Ace's performance with him certainly must count.
  • In Order of the Stick, the Chaotic Good Lord Shojo does this, in order to make a point that it's the heroes' fault the corpse is dead. To be fair, he's planning to bring the dude back to life.
  • This article provides us with a Real Life example from the U.S. Army's 5th Stryker Brigade "Kill Team".
  • Joked about on Mock the Week. "Hello, I'm Menzies Campbell. I would like to assure you all that I'm not dead, nor am I being operated by a system of pulleys "
  • A chapter of The Sandman set in the French Revolution shows decapitated bodies used as giant marionettes after a public execution.
  • In Things Mr. Welch Is No Longer Allowed to Do In An RPG, Mr. Welch has been banned from doing this.
  • Rygel did this to his Arch Enemy Durka in Farscape. Not that Durka wasn't an incredibly nasty piece of work, but Rygel is one of the good guys.
  • An occasional gag on Whose Line Is It Anyway, most commonly with Ryan Stiles and/or Scenes From A Hat.

 ' Drew Carey:' "Things not to do at a funeral..."

    • It's also the basis for the game Dead Bodies, where one player (usually Colin) persists in performing a scene in a play after all of the other actors have died and therefore has to provide everyone else's voice and movement.
  • Independence Day: Release me! Release me...NOW!
  • The graveyard scene in Hamlet has a bunch of lines which could easily be played this way; the most blatant is probably:

 Hamlet: [This could be the skull] of a courtier; which could say 'Good morrow, sweet lord! How dost thou, good lord?' This might be my lord such-a-one, that praised my lord such-a-one's horse, when he meant to beg it; might it not?

  • Rare heroic example: In the novel On Stranger Tides, Hurwood dies before he can signal his accomplice on shore from the deck of his ship. Shandy is forced to convert the villain's corpse into a marionette that can perform the necessary gesture, else the accomplice will carry out a voodoo ritual that will evict Beth's soul from her body.
  • Lord of the Flies has the infamous pig head on a stick. Jack also tries to mount Ralph's head in the same way, but is interrupted when they are finally rescued.
  • In the behind-the-scenes features for Jeepers Creepers 2, there was a scrapped scene where the Creeper would try to lure his next victims over with this tactic, hiding behind a rock. They decided not to do it, however, stating they felt it too soon for the Creeper to speak.
  • Butch of Chopping Block gave Jim Henson the funeral he would have wanted.
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