In the first commercial , " The Caretaker " picks out which tool he'll use to dissect his victim alive with by using the "Eenie Meenie Minie Moe" method. In the second commercial , The Caretaker mockingly plays with the toes of his dead victims while doing the "This little piggy An old Public Service Announcement started with a closeup of a black mother singing Mockingbird to her toddler There is a safety advertisement about overhead powerlines that used to be on the radio in Calgary, Alberta.
It started out with the tune from Rock a Bye Baby, with the song slowing down and slowly becoming more sinister-sounding.belhayroaleteak.cf/historisches-stadtlexikon-von-malchow-german-edition.php
The Shocking, Twisted Stories Behind Your Favorite Nursery Rhymes
It doesn't seem ironic, but considering that one of the ways you can come in contact and one the ways they like to remind people about is backing up while in a cherry picker, and the cherry picker can resemble a cradle in a way, and the lyrics for the end of the nursery rhyme are, "And down will come baby, cradle and all," well, it just brings up some fairly disturbing images.
A campaign ad put out by Barack Obama during the election takes his opponent Mitt Romney's rendition of "America the Beautiful" and turns it into this, altering the audio to give it a mournful quality and playing it over scenes of closed factories and ghost towns while attacking Romney's jobs record as head of Bain Capital.
This video includes a German public service video involving classic horror characters singing "Brahm's Lullaby. The German child advocacy group Kinderschutzbund made a series of radio PSA's that featured kids singing children's songs, but with the lyrics changed to be about child abuse. The Partnership for a Drug Free America did the exact same thing in a campaign to encourage parents to talk to their kids about drugs because they probably have already been exposed to them.
There is a kid singing the ABC song, only instead of the alphabet, she is listing off drug acronyms. Now I know my drugs you see. Next time won't you sing with me? Amatsuki uses it to incredibly creepy effect, sung by a choir of children in an eerie whisper and accompanied only by the occasional ringing of a bell. Now remember that the Yakou has a bell. Its sound drives people insane During an arc in the anime, a serial killer named Drocel keeps grinding his organ and sings a very creepy version of "London Bridge is Falling Down".
His prey is young, beautiful girls that he turns into living dolls; the song is used to control said dolls and determine what materials to construct them from. Despite being male, he's kind enough to make an exception for Ciel. Make it out of gold and silver, my fair lady. But only the first verse. Some of which are played during the flashbacks of Lucy's terrible childhood. Who are those little girls in pain just trapped in castle of dark side of moon Twelve of them shining bright in vain like flowers that blossom just once in years?
They're dancing in the shadow like whispers of love just dreaming of a place where they're free as dove They've never been allowed to love in this cursed cage It's only the fairy tale they believe It's only a little creepy when you realize that the lyrics symbolize the basic plot of the show.
But other than that it's mostly a sad tune. Particularly when Alyssa dies. Margery Daw from Shakugan no Shana was also named after one of these; in fact her spells use rather obscure and creepy ones as incantations. Many chapters of Kaori Yuki's Count Cain were inspired by Mother Goose rhymes, even some of those that were an integral part of the larger arc.
Based on Agatha Christie's technique, these chapters usually start with the nursery rhyme, which gradually turns out to frame a ghastly crime.
The first thirty-odd seconds of Melodie are of the music box variety. The song then swells into a more rock-ish theme with the music box chimes heard heavily in the background. Chloe's theme, Secret Game is of the rhyme variant. Ghost in the Shell: The Tachikomas sing a children's song as they're being packed up and sent to the laboratory for formatting and disassembly.
They think it's a happy song, and tell Batou as much. Problem is, the song is actually about a calf being taken to slaughter, who wonders why he can't grow wings like a bird and escape his impending doom. It was also implied that, to the Tachikomas, death was an exciting adventure that they were looking forward to, especially because to experience death was something reserved for those with ghosts. It can be interpreted as the Tachikomas slinging some guilt on Batou for letting it happen.
Just previously Batou had deceived them by pretending that everything was OK, when he knew about their impending fate, and their farewells were rather sharp and subdued compared to their usually cheerful personality. Considering their earlier worries, they weren't eager to die. And how can we forget the episode where an insane serial killer skins women alive, and sells their recorded experiences as snuff films at a flea market, all while humming "Mary Had a Little Lamb"?
The manga Judas uses this traditional prayer to creepy effect: One of Kafuka's Nightmare Fuel Station Attendant moments in Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei involves her singing an extraordinarily creepy nursery tune which she seems to think is a cheerful song. One episode of Death Note has Misa taking over the role of Kira and singing a nursery song in the "I'm watching you" vein while occasionally killing those around her. Not quite this, but in Darker Than Black , one Contractor, Mai, was formerly a normal schoolgirl, and after she uses her powers, she has the Renumeration of whistling.
Said powers involve Kill It with Fire , and she whistles a dissonant melody as her victims scream in agony. Friend sings one a few times in 20th Century Boys to taunt the heroes. Kenji-kun, come and play with me. Hansel and Gretel from Black Lagoon can be heard singing one of these while changing after " playing " with one of Balalaika's men until he died from it and then with his dead body, which still twitched every time they hammered nails into his head.
There's the Road's Song from D. Gray-Man both Japanese and English are deliciously creepy. Quite some examples of the Vocaloid 's songs could apply, but the more straight example would be this one which is a Ring-Around-The-Rosie-like song about immortal children playing endlessly and the horrible way they died. The video doesn't help. Deadman Wonderland features the Lullaby, a sad and disturbing song about a cursed woodpecker.
As revealed later, the song acts to calm the Wretched Egg, allowing her to exist as Shiro. When she and Ganta were children, they would often sing the song together while Ganta's mother played the tune and cried. In the anime Inuyasha , Kagome's name is implied to have been derived from the old Japanese game "Kagome, Kagome" in which the players form a ring with a person in the middle with his or her eyes closed, then move in a circle around him or her, singing, and stop once the song is finished.
The person in the middle then tries to guess who is standing behind them now. Although the song is very cryptic and has several interpretations , Kagome ultimately discovers Naraku behind the possessed priestess in this episode and shoots him. In episode 7 of the anime of Psychic Detective Yakumo , it opens with the young Miyuki Nanase singing another version of "London Bridge is Falling down" while drawing on the ground with a piece of chalk a girl eating three people, which goes like this: America screams that it sounds like he's trying to summon the Devil.
When written by Jeph Loeb , anyway. In Thunderbolts , Norman Osborn finally goes completely insane , puts on his old Goblin costume and starts killing people. Though the song was originally meant to be disturbing, having the Green Goblin sing it during a massacre makes it even worse. Bound him about the waist and served him most barbarously. The Court of Owls watches, Watches all the time. Ruling Gotham from a shadowed perch , Behind granite and lime.
They see you at your hearth. And they see you in your bed. Speak not a whispered word about them A creepy ghost sings on. We have many things to do. This song is the result of very hard work Listen to the song, from very far. We have eyes and ears and toes. We have quite a lot of foes Beware us when we are mad. For what will happen will be bad. We have brothers, sisters, and Mothers. We have also a many Fathers. Oh we are very happy where we are. This song is the result of very hard work This has been the song, from very far.
This fan fiction is a continuation of the song sung by Harley Quinn in Batman: In Hard Being Pure , Snatch, the villain specialising in theft, comes check on Noa while she's confined to her magic circle and finds her signing "Who killed Cock Robin", ending with the Sparrow in the song being hung like a thief. Sound like a Pet the Dog moment to you? You are wrong, my friend. This is Crona's worst memory, because it happens while Medusa is drunk on wine and has made him drink some too , there's countless snakes crawling all over them, and she's rambling on about how she can't love and wants Crona to help her feel as if she can.
It scares poor Crona so badly that he forces himself to forget it ever happened. Harmful to Minors , indeed. All the sons and daughters Left lying in the waters Ashes, ashes We all rise up! Azula explains that the song is about a past Fire Lord who crushed a rebellion in the Outer Islands of the nation, killed the rebels when they surrendered, left the bodies lying on the beaches, and then burned down all their hometowns for good measure.
In this Death Note fic, Near recalls one as part of his father's horrible abuse: Hush, little baby, don't make a sound Just quiet your cries as Daddy throws you to the ground Hush, little baby, don't make a move Because Daddy isn't nearly through with you In chapter 75 of Gensokyo 20XXV , we have a poltergeist of Yukari's memories singing "Kagome, Kagome", the Japanese equivalent, with some of the verses being changed, translating to, Caged bird, caged bird When will I come out In the night of dawn The crane and turtle slipped I know who stands behind!
But it turns into this trope when it's revealed that the singer is not Marie, but Medusa. She's kidnapped the child and intends to raise him as a Tykebomb to succeed where Crona failed. Hush, little baby, quiet now, Mama's going to hold you safe and sound Hush, little baby, don't make a move, your Mama'd move heaven and earth for you Hush, little baby, don't you cry, you're the most precious thing in Daddy's life Hush, little baby, you'll never know, how Daddy loves you with all his soul Hush, little baby, don't you fear, Mama's always going to be right here Hush, little baby, my precious one, I know you'll be your father's son Hush, little baby, soon you'll know, Mama's never going to let you go Hush, little baby, here you'll stay, because Daddy couldn't keep his demon away.
The My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic dark fanfic Pattycakes 2 has in the "bad" ending sung from Fluttershy to a permanently regressed Rainbow Dash and Scootaloo. Try singing it to the tune of Want You Gone from Portal 2. Here is the last verse. You'll have the mind of a baby That's what I'm counting on You're [sic] never hurt anyone else Now that your mind is gone Now you are at age one Now our little game is done In Harry Crow a pregnant Bellatrix Lestrange sings nursery rhymes while cutting strips of skin off Edmund Parkinson.
Dragon Ball Z Abridged: Freeza sings his own version of " My Favorite Things ": Peaceful young races with fire on their houses Millions of voices all silenced like mouses Watching the cowards bow to their new king These are a few of my favorite things Later on, Imperfect Cell is introduced creepily singing "Mr. Makes sense, since he was partly made from Freeza's DNA. Sword Art Online Abridged 's second episode, in which a player sees a vision of a giant hallucinatory Jesus that tells him to "kill them all," ends with a discordant rendition of "Jesus Loves Me" and the appearance of the Laughing Coffin symbol.
Heir of the Nightmare: Nightmare Moon sings "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star as she dementedly and viciously chases after her daughter Twilight. Twinkle, Twinkle, little star. How I wonder where you are. Up above the world so high, like a diamond in the sky. How I wonder where you are Dead Muggle, dead Muggle, swinging in a tree How many dead Muggles do you see? Tongues turned blue and faces gone grey Watch them all as they twist and sway! A number of usages of "You Are My Sunshine" in certain fandoms are this, and place emphasis on the "Please don't take my sunshine away" line.
It's not uncommon for people to do creepy covers of Disney songs, which may not be nursery songs in the classical sense, but they are often tied to childhood innocence and these creepy covers tend to be lullaby-like orchestral or music box covers. A compilation of such covers can be found here. Dragon Lily has another disturbing childhood song from Bellatrix. The movie has the jingling toy bells and squeaking as the killer toys attack.
The Nightmare Before Christmas features the three musicians one of whom is Greg Proops playing an off-key, really creepy version of "Jingle Bells. Later, they give the same treatment to "Here Comes Santa Claus". Home, home on the range Where them critters are tied up in chains I cut through their sides And tear off their hides And the next day I do it again! Boggis, Bunce, and Bean: This is only a partial example of this trope as the song is actually sung by schoolchildren, and is not used ironically. Badger even invokes it in order to dissuade Mr. Fox from buying a house next to said farmers.
Lord Farquaad taunts the Gingerbread man by holding his missing legs and saying "Run run run as fast as you can, you can't catch me I'm the gingerbread man! It uses the cheery tune and smiling characters, but is actually giving quite a few clues as to how rigid and dystopian Duloc has become. In the Halloween special ''Scared Shrekless' there is a Halloween variation of it. After all, it's about the Rwandan genocide. Creepshow has a relentlessly ominous example in the short "Something to Tide You Over". While the hero is enduring his drowning death, the soundtrack uses the chords from "Camptown Races" to make his wait for death almost unendurable.
In Profondo Rosso the killer plays a creepy children's song before committing the murders. Later, Annie distracts her possessed mother long enough for Ash to get the edge over her by singing the same song. Definitely played for laughs though, especially when he steps on a nail and the tiny Ashes finish the verse for him as he gasps in pain. Black Christmas the original has the deranged 'Billy' singing 'Daddy's gone a-huntin' while rocking a chair in which he has placed the corpse of a girl he murdered.
Forget Me Not revolves around a children's game involving one. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, release the one ignore by heaven. Eight, nine, ten, now run and hide or join her on the devil's side. Eleven comes, the clock will chime. Forgotten souls erased by time. Midnight comes but not too late. So kill the ghost or seal your fate. In Chakushin Ari the original version of One Missed Call there's the Ringtone which announces the you're gonna die this day, at this hour, in this way message, which is then revealed to be a theme tune from an old children's program.
In the American version, it's revealed to be the song that a certain bear plushie played when it was squeezed. During afternoon tea, there's a shift in the air, A bone trembling chill that tells you she's there, There are those who believe the whole town is cursed, But the house in the marsh is by far the worst, What she wants is unknown, but she always comes back, The specter of darkness, The woman in black.
Rosemary's Baby has "Rosemary's Lullaby" as the opening and closing theme. In the film it was sung by star Mia Farrow as la-las, and this version is plenty creepy. However, the song does have lyrics and is also known as "Sleep Safe and Warm". Out of context, it seems to be an innocent promise of protection from a mother to her infant. But if you've seen the film, Fridge Horror makes you wonder if maybe it's the father doing the singing.
Or, considering the ending, it's a duet. Pirates of the Caribbean: The films use the original Disney song, "Yo Ho A Pirate's Life For Me ," to creepy effect; primarily by having a young girl sing it slowly and in a minor key, instead of a pack of pirates singing upbeat and in major. Another POTC example is "Hoist the Colors", first sung by a young boy and his fellow probably-not-all pirates on their way to the gallows. In Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides , the mermaids' version of "My Jolly Sailor Bold" is particularly creepy due to the monotone way it's sung, and what almost happens next One particularly chilling scene in Hitchcock's The Birds is a perfect example.
Tippi Hendren's character is waiting to pick up someone from the schoolhouse, so she sits outside on a bench. As she lights a cigarette, the children inside can be heard singing "Risseldy Rosseldy," an English nonsense song "I married my wife in the month of June, risseldy-rosseldy, mau-mau-mau As they do, a single crow flies behind Hendren and lands on the jungle gym When she finally looks up, the entire structure is covered with crows, silently waiting for the children to emerge Before the infamous "Here's Johnny!
Not by the hair on your chinny chin chin? Then I'll huff, and I'll puff, and blow your house in! That the bear's former owner had used this song as a lullabye earlier in the film doesn't help. Manhunter introduced Hannibal Lecter with some tinkly music box-type soundtrack. He then starts talking about Graham's family "That aftershave is something a child would select.
And in Hannibal Rising , he forces an ex-Nazi to sing a German children's song before he kills him. A song that had also been used in Hansel and Gretel, just to make the point. The Quatermass Conclusion featured a children's nursery rhyme containing seemingly innocent lyrics that indicate that the terrible inexplicable events occurring in the film have happened before. Season of the Witch features a recurring advertising jingle for Silver Shamrock novelties sung to the tune of 'London Bridge is Falling Down'.
This becomes increasingly sinister as we learn of Silver Shamrock's actual purpose. Becomes doubly chilling when you realize that the tune is changing with each passing day—"Six more days to Halloween, Halloween, Halloween Despite being an unbelievably creepy film, Pan's Labyrinth managed to mostly dodge this, as the lullaby hummed by Mercedes is mostly used to genuinely comforting effect, as well as being a meditation on how sad everything is.
A genuinely creepy nursery rhyme dictates the killer's murders in Non Ho Sonno. Samara Morgan, the Creepy Child of The Ring , sings the following, nightmarish nursery rhyme to herself instants before being suffocated and tossed in a well to die by her adoptive mother: When it stops, it's just beginning. Sun comes up, we laugh and we cry. Sun goes down, and then we all die. In the original Japanese version, Ringu , the nursery rhyme was about staying away from the ocean, or else monsters would get you, an allusion to the fact that Sadako is likely an oceanic demigoddess. The toy piano music playing over the opening and closing credits in the Puppetmaster movies falls into this trope.
A scene in Ice Age 2: The Meltdown has the main characters encounter some vultures and the vultures start singing "Food, Glorious Food" from Oliver! It's more silly than creepy. The Night of the Hunter includes a creepy children's skipping song about a hanging, and multiple creepy lullabies. Lillian Gish later defeats the Hunter at the end by singing counterpoint to the hymn.
A B-horror movie called Sleepstalker , in which the monster is an executed killer into a twisted, demonic version of the sandman, features a creep nursery rhyme about a child going to sleep. Given the lyrics, some creepiness is guaranteed. Jeepers Creepers turned the title tune into a horrifying premonition. A drug dealer precedes shooting a small child with "Hush little baby, don't you cry, Kali's going to give you eternal life. Daddy's gonna buy you a big black bird! The opening sequence has a metallic toy piano playing over the heroines journey to her new job at a ballet school, to creepy effect.
The infamously confusing trailer starts with a variation on "Roses are red, violets are blue. If you hear it, you're wormfood. The opening theme to Poltergeist. Silent Night, Deadly Night , being about an Ax-Crazy in a Santa suit with a traumatic childhood, naturally features a few ironic Christmas carols generally heard before, or while, something particularly nasty happens. These are mostly things written specifically for the film rather than real Christmas standards, the most prominently featured being the Paranoia Fuel that is "Santa's Watching": Santa's watching, Santa's creeping Now you're nodding, now you're sleeping Were you good for Mom and Dad?
Santa knows when you've been bad The German song Mamatschi will forever be remembered by most people as the song that played as children were taken away by Nazis to be killed as their mothers ran after the trucks, screaming. The song itself can be very disturbing, as the cheerful melody tells the story of a boy begging his mother for a horse, but never getting one, complaining about how he didn't want horses "like these" of candy or wood and later as an adult remembering this when he sees the chariot that carries his mother's coffin, making the outcry that he didn't want horses "like these" rather heart-breaking.
In the opening seconds of The Lost Boys , before the footage starts rolling, a little child's voice can be hears singing the first two lines of "Cry Little Sister". Although this song is also used with full vocal chorus and music at the beginning of the film, and has since been covered by several bands as a Gothic rock anthem, that first soft-voiced a capella rendition sounds eerily like a children's nursery song.
Repo The Genetic Opera has a couple of songs that evoked this feel through clever use of repetition and call-and-response, especially 'Zydrate Anatomy. We're gonna teach you how to shoot up! Zydrate comes in a little glass vial. A little glass vial? A little glass vial! There's also the song where Pavi and Luigi prance around the Opera stage, singing about how Shilo's mother died. The protagonist of Tetsuo 3: The Bullet Man sings "Hush, Little Baby" to himself during various disturbing scenes, to calm himself down.
It apparently helps in keeping him from transforming. One bright day in the middle of the night Two dead boys got up to fight Back to back they faced each other Drew their swords and shot each other A deaf policeman heard the noise He came and killed those two dead boys One bright day in the middle of the night In Midnight Cowboy , Joe Buck flashes back to scenes of his childhood while riding the Greyhound bus in the middle of the night and staring out the window; the voice of his grandmother singing "Hush, Little Baby" accompanies the scene.
In the movie Changeling , a serial killer sings "Silent Night" to make himself feel better immediately before he gets executed by hanging. Not exactly a nursery song, but still. David, after Charlie takes over is searching for his daughter while slowly sing "Hush, Little Baby" in a creepy way. While holding a knife. If you listen through the credits, a little girl starts singing a creepy song- "Who's playing hide and seek?
Won't you come play with me? Who's hiding in the dark? Come out, come out, let's play again Much later, she matter-of-factly recites the first line while sticking an actual needle in his eye.
The Tower of Terror movie uses "It's raining, it's pouring," while Buzzy and his niece walk down a deserted hallway. An electronic Spider-Man toy sings that as well. And it is aimed at toddlers a case of Misaimed Marketing , perhaps? In Turbulence , after the serial killer breaks loose and supposedly kills everyone on the plane except the flight attendant heroine, he stalks after her while gently singing "Buffalo Sally, won'tcha come out tonight, come out tonight, Come, little children, I'll take thee away Into a land of enchantment.
Come, little children, the time's come to play, Here in my garden of magic. The full poem was expanded later by another author. Not Edgar Allan Poe , as commonly misbelieved. In the Disney Channel movie Smart House , as Pat goes crazy and tries to show that she can be a mother to the kids, she starts singing "Hush Little Baby". It gets kinda creepy, especially because as she's doing this, she's summoning a giant hurricane in the house and terrorizing the family.
The titular theme song to the horror flick Happy Birthday to Me.
- "It's Raining, It's Pouring, And the Old Man Is Dead.".
- Lion et le moucheron (Le) (Sciences) (French Edition).
- Mother Zombie: Nursery Rhymes for the Sick and Twisted.
It sounds like it's sung by a 10 year old girl and has plenty of slow creepy music. In the Marx Brothers' Duck Soup , newly installed president Groucho lays down the law in a peppy tune: I will not stand for anything that's crooked or unfair, I'm strictly on the up-and-up, so everyone beware! If anyone's caught taking graft — and I don't get my share, We stand him up against the wall and Pop Goes the Weasel! Super Size Me uses a variant of this. The opening shows a group of young children repeating several lines of Product Placement as a group chant.
This is intended to be off-putting and slightly disturbing. The Haunting the original: Eleanor hums a wordless tune twice in the film, both times while dancing with Hugh Crain's statue. The effect is creepy. Even the remake has something similar: This same tune is played later on as an Ominous Music Box Tune on a hand-cranked phonograph she finds in the nursery Irena hums a wordless lullaby that is both soothing and slightly creepy.
Flora has a music box which plays the tune O Willow Waly frequently throughout the movie, but it's only at the very beginning that the lyrics are heard sung by Flora: We lay my love and I beneath the weeping willow. But now alone I lie and weep beside the tree. Singing O Willow Waly by the tree that weeps with me.
Singing O Willow Waly till my lover returns to me. But now alone I lie. Oh willow I die. In the Alfred Hitchcock movie Sabotage , after Mrs. Verloc's little brother Stevie is killed by a bomb planted by her husband , she wanders into the movie theater she and her husband run. A cartoon version of Who Killed Cock Robin? Wicked Witch of the West: Ring around the roses, a pocket-full of spears!
During the closing credits of the horror-short "Hellion" , a babysitter who is turning into a zombie sings to an already zombified small boy she is tending altered lyrics to the tune of "Brahms' Lullaby. As she analyzes it, background music starts playing that sounds like something from a music box. Hero of the Federation has one young female trooper, under the control of a Puppeteer Parasite , singing "Itsy Bitsy Spider" before trying to take out the heroes with a pair of live grenades.
Ten has "Hush Little Piggy", a song about a butcher killing pigs one by one, with the melody being a slight variation on "Hush Little Baby". We first hear it being sung and played on an out-of-tune piano by The Folk Singer not long before the first death in the movie, and each line foreshadows the fate of one of the main characters in some way. In Elysium Kruger tries calming Frey's daughter, Matilda, with an Afrikaans children's tune as they're being taken to Elysium. She's being "comforted" by the man who beat her mother and stated his intent to "settle down with her" , on top of a man with a live grenade being in close proximity.
Worse, it's a song of a married man and woman going about their life after spending a night together. The Filipino horror film White Lady corrupts the classic lullaby "Sa Ugoy ng Duyan" " In the cradle's rocking " by using it as the leitmotif of the eponymous vengeance-seeking ghost. While the full song is a cheerful little number about how the bogeyman is really a coward that can be easily driven away by any child, the trailer takes only the few lyrics it needs to make the song terrifying. Children, have you ever met the bogeyman before? No, of course you haven't, for you're much too good, I'm sure Hush, hush, hush, here comes the bogeyman Hush, hush, hush, here comes the bogeyman Don't let him come too close to you, he'll catch you if he can atch you if he can, catch you if he can, catch you if he — catch you if he — catch you if he — [scream] Axeman: The Axeman whistles "Three Blind Mice" during the climax.
A Clockwork Orange doesn't use a nursery rhyme, but it uses the next best thing: Alex sings this song while he and his droogs torture an old writer and rape his wife. In The Name of the Rose Salvatore sings an old tuscan lullaby while he's tied to the stake. Ghost from the Machine has the ghost of a psychotic daycare worker who killed a child, his mother, and then himself sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star to the protagonists little brother.
No plays a calypso rendition of "Three Blind Mice" during a scene of three hitmen Obfuscating Disability. Book the Eighth's accompanying song, Smile! The Film of the Book plays music-box tunes and the saccharine "Littlest Elf" song during tragic scenes. The lyrics could be threatening, to an extent, but the music is just so upbeat. The climax of the Discworld novel Thud! Sam Vimes is lost in a cave, addled with pain, despair, and rage, and fighting off a pack of dwarfs not to mention possession by the Summoning Dark, a diabolical "entity of pure vengeance" brought about by a dwarf curse , when out of pure force of habit he starts to shout the words to his infant son's favorite book, "Where's My Cow?
Understandably, the dwarfs aren't sure at first how to react to the threat of a man with an axe and a sword shouting things like "It goes 'baa! Agatha Christie's novel And Then There Were None features a rhyme about Indian boys being killed one by one, which many of the characters recognized from their nursery days. Said characters are killed in the same manner as the Indians in the song.
There are even Indian dolls in the living room that disappear as the characters are bumped off. This is an arguably benign and harmless bowdlerisation of the original. Both rhyme and book were originally entitled "Ten Little Niggers", one paperback actually featured a hanged golliwog a kind of gonk doll based on a blackface minstrel figure on the cover.
It was later further bowdlerized as "Ten Little Soldier Boys". Acceptable Targets keep moving Christie uses a lot of titles like this: There's even a Lampshade Hanging in one book where Poirot chides himself for thinking about nursery rhymes so much. The Mousetrap also has a lampshade hanging, where one character likes to recite the creepy nursery rhyme of the title and another, noting the lyrics, wonders why children like to say such horrible things.
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Van Dine outdid Christie in his novel The Bishop Murder Case , which features a series of murders each related to a different nursery rhyme. For example, the first victim is a guy nicknamed "Cock Robin", who gets shot with an arrow. In Stephen King 's novel Insomnia , the Big Bad , who is essentially one of the three Fates, normally invisible "little bald doctors", who are Death repeatedly sings a skipping song, while skipping with a skipping rope that he stole: Three, six, nine The goose drank wine She's amused, says that's easy, and sings the following fragment in a minor key: Not only is it appropriate to the character, shortly thereafter a dark Jedi named "Lord Nyax" after a monster in a children's story appears.
Also, when the Bedlam patients have a little performance in front of their benefactors, she makes up a creepy little song about various vaguely ridiculous-sounding evils and how to defend them. Everyone thinks it's funny, but it later turns out it was a message for the heroines because every thing she said was true In the YA novel The Children of Green Knowe , there's a fictional kids' song about a tree that's possessed by an evil spirit: Green Noah, demon tree Evil fingers can't catch me Ba ba Barak, come see thee tarry!
Slow not, wait not come and harry. Ba ba Barak come and sup, And eat the world and sky right up! Nursery rhymes play a role several times in Barry Hughart's Bridge of Birds and sequels. The rhymes themselves tend to be quite harmless-sounding until you realize what they actually mean. As Kao Li points out, most real children's rhymes don't directly speak of the topic they're about, so if there's a nursery rhyme that actually talks about fighting and death and the apocalypse, it was probably made up by adults; whereas if it talks about goats and grass and wall-jumping, it's probably about virgins getting murdered by evil dictators or something similar.
In Bridge of Birds , the children's rhyme and the game that went with it was part of a generations-spanning Gambit Roulette , where the players knew that all the documentation of what the Big Bad did to become the Big Bad would be purged, and eventually fade from living memory. However, oral tradition is not so easily lost, so they coded the whole story and the means to bring down the Big Bad into the children's game.
The song's last stanzas has a rat taking the cheese, and then the cheese stands alone. As one might guess from the title of the book, the cheese refers to the protagonist. Like Agatha Christie , James Patterson 's " Alex Cross " serial-killer mysteries used or adapted lines from nursery rhymes as the titles omtting the few that bucked the trend: They're not songs from our world, however, but openly sinister tunes apparently devised by Card Carrying Villains for Enfant Terribles. Your life is over. Which is probably not the connotation your six-year-old self had in mind.
It is widely believed that the boy was not their son at all, but a child who was brought into the birthing room and passed off as their own in order to ensure a Roman Catholic heir to the throne. Though its lyrics and even its title have gone through some changes over the years, the most popular contention is that the sing-songy verse refers to the Great Plague of London. That the nursery rhyme probably has its origins "in the religious ban on dancing among many Protestants in the nineteenth century, in Britain as well as here in North America.
Adolescents found a way around the dancing ban with what was called in the United States the 'play-party. They were hugely popular, and younger children got into the act, too. The poem is speculated to have been written as a mockery of Cardinal Thomas Wolsey, whose refusal to grant an annulment to King Henry VIII, so that he could marry Anne Boleyn, led to his political downfall.
Nursery rhymes may seem innocent -- what could poems meant for the nursery contain of violence or scandal? Some nursery rhymes contain overt hints of cruelty or adult themes see: Scholars have suggested that while certain nursery rhymes are simply nonsense songs or sweet poems, others may derive from political satire, ribald jokes or religious disputes. Baa Baa Black Sheep Aw, how sweet -- a talking sheep with enough wool for everyone! Of course, there are some unpleasant theories as to the meaning of this rhyme. Perhaps the most convincing is that it dates back to feudal times and the institution of a harsh tax on wool in England.
One-third would be taken for the king and nobility, and one-third for the church, leaving little for the farmers. But the modern iterations of this rhyme seem to be cleaned-up versions of the original, which described three girls in the tub: Some scholars believe this refers to a tawdry sideshow at a fair in which three naked girls are in a tub together -- and an extra bit of scandal is derived from the presence of three respectable townsfolk.
Related Mother Zombie: Nursery Rhymes for the Sick and Twisted
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