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Guitierrez: Mm-hmm-hmm, ha ha ha ha ha! Laugh with me, Jocko... Laugh with me!

Jocko: EEEEEEEEEE! EEEEEEEEEEEE!

The Big Bad has the princess locked in his tower, the hero is in a death trap, and he is moments away from taking over the world. He is surrounded by his minions so it's the perfect time for a little Evil Gloating followed by a nice, hearty Evil Laugh. He belts one out but stops once he realizes he is the only one laughing. He will immediately let his Mooks know, probably through verbal means, that they need to join in. Getting the message, the henchmen start laughing and continue to do so until it's okay to stop.

Sometimes, the villain will tell them to shut up after a few moments.

This trope is typically Played for Laughs and is a parody of the Evil Laugh trope. Contrast the "Everybody Laughs" Ending, which may still seem contrived but isn't forced.

Examples of Laugh with Me include:


Anime

  • Lady Aska in Magic Knight Rayearth (and a Noblewoman's Laugh to boot).
  • Naga in Slayers teaches a couple of villain of the week in the OVA to laugh an evil and noble laugh like her. By the end of the episode, the three laugh together in a twillight.

Comics

Film

  • In the first Austin Powers movie, Dr. Evil starts an Evil Laugh alone. He doesn't say anything but instead, he turns to his henchpeople and beckons that they join in. They soon start laughing together in a very awkward manner. The problem is, they're not quite sure when to stop, and no one wants to be the first to stop laughing... great awkwardness ensues.
  • A non-Villain example in The Great Race when The Great Leslie and Hezekiah meet Crown Prince Hoepnick. The prince makes several jokes, each time gesturing for the crowd to laugh, which they dutifully do. At one point Hezekiah keeps laughing after every one else stops, until The Great Leslie elbows him in the ribs. Watch it here, starting at 0:20.
  • In Labyrinth, Jareth the Goblin King laughs just before the "Dance Magic" sequence. He quickly notices that his goblins are not joining in and asks, "... Well?". The goblins start laughing, only for him to quiet them down for his song.
  • In UHF, when R.J. Fletcher starts laughing, the two managers under him realize, after a short pause, that they'd better start forcing themselves to laugh along with him.
  • Evil Dead 2: After a while of torturing Ash, the entire house comes to life and starts laughing at him. Ash quickly gets swept up in it, and not long after starts sobbing in pain.

Live Action Television

  • In the Doctor Who episode "A Christmas Carol", Kazran does this and follows it up with a "That was funny!".
    • Earlier than that in the episode "Dalek", Van Statten's "in-tru-da window" joke is met with dead silence, to which he clarifies "In-tru-da window, that's funny!" at which point his goons get the message and join in.
  • In the DVD Commentary, Ian Hislop suggests that part of the reason for Piers Morgan's notoriously awful appearance on Have I Got News for You was that as Editor of the Mirror he'd been able to enforce this trope, and consequently believed himself to be very funny. Notably, he actually tries to bully the audience into this, but since they're not his Mooks it obviously doesn't work.
  • In The Big Bang Theory, Raz goes to work for Sheldon. Sheldon plays one of his awkward pranks on Raz and after informing him of the fact that he was joking, mentions, "I'm your boss now. You may want to laugh at that."

Video Games


Web Comics

  • Inverted in Order of the Stick. Xykon proclaims that his goals will be achieved soon, Red Cloak and Mit-D laugh. Redcloak asks why Xykon doesn't laugh.

 Xykon: Actually, ever since I became a lich, I haven't been able to get the same volume in my evil laughter since I technically don't have lungs.

Web Original

Western Animation

  • The Trope Namer comes from Freakazoid. The eponymous hero's eventual Evil Counterpart, Guitierrez, would often laugh while surrounded by his cohorts. He would then gleefully tell them, "Laugh with me."
  • Inspector Gadget has an inversion: Dr. Claw frequently punishes his cat for laughing with him.
  • Smitus (in a My Life as a Teenage Robot episode) monologues about his evil plan and then lets out an evil laugh, while his minions just stare. He gives them an icy glare and says, "You laugh too." The minions all start laughing themselves silly, so much so that they accidentally let the episode's Applied Phlebotinum out of their ship's airlock.
  • Non-laugh variation: the "Shanghaied" episode of SpongeBob SquarePants has the Flying Dutchman take Spongebob and Patrick onboard as his crew. When he demands that they "howl with me, that we might set the seven seas, ABLAZE with fear!", they comply with various ridiculous noises, until he finally gives up on making them scary.
  • Kung Fu Panda 2 subverts this in that the Big Bad asks The Hero to laugh with him. He does so and then questions why he's laughing.
  • In Kick Buttowski, Gordon Gibble snaps his fingers every time he want his henchmen to laugh at something he just said. Ronaldo demands the same thing from his pit crew the episode "Mellowbrook Drift". At one point he says: "Laugh harder!" On another occasion, he stops them, stating "It wasn't that funny!"
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender:

 Guard at the Boiling Rock: "Well, isn't that cute. (Beat) I said, isn't that cute?"

Zuko: "Um, yes! Very cute, sir."

Sokka: "Super cute."

  • In Codename: Kids Next Door, there is a boss man who wants to capture LIVE Rainbow Monkeys and do some horrible thing with/to them that is never mentioned:

 Boss: And then, we'll take those Rainbow Monkeys, and...*whispers to henchman Simon, they both laugh*

Boss: Shut up Simon!

Simon: Yes, sir...

  • Non-villainous example in an episode of The Simpsons, Homer is forced to borrow money from Patty and Selma. They agree to help him out on the condition that he become their slave until he repays the debt. They then begin smirking and laughing, and Homer chuckles a little with them at first. Eventually he starts to genuinely laugh more so than those two, who then get a little annoyed at him.


Real Life

  • Legend has it that Emperor Faustin of Haiti got his imperial chamberlain to say "His Majesty is now laughing; my lords, you are invited to laugh as well" every time he cracked a joke.
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