• Before making a single edit, Tropedia EXPECTS our site policy and manual of style to be followed. Failure to do so may result in deletion of contributions and blocks of users who refuse to learn to do so. Our policies can be reviewed here.
  • All images MUST now have proper attribution, those who neglect to assign at least the "fair use" licensing to an image may have it deleted. All new pages should use the preloadable templates feature on the edit page to add the appropriate basic page markup. Pages that don't do this will be subject to deletion, with or without explanation.
  • All new trope pages will be made with the "Trope Workshop" found on the "Troper Tools" menu and worked on until they have at least three examples. The Trope workshop specific templates can then be removed and it will be regarded as a regular trope page after being moved to the Main namespace. THIS SHOULD BE WORKING NOW, REPORT ANY ISSUES TO Janna2000, SelfCloak or RRabbit42. DON'T MAKE PAGES MANUALLY UNLESS A TEMPLATE IS BROKEN, AND REPORT IT THAT IS THE CASE. PAGES WILL BE DELETED OTHERWISE IF THEY ARE MISSING BASIC MARKUP.


WikEd fancyquotes.pngQuotesBug-silk.pngHeadscratchersIcons-mini-icon extension.gifPlaying WithUseful NotesMagnifier.pngAnalysisPhoto link.pngImage LinksHaiku-wide-icon.pngHaikuLaconic

File:5054735442 8123.jpg


"We're not clear yet, I think the bouncer is still looking at us."

"Everyone's probably looking at us, we're a 15 foot tall man."

Two or more children (or just short people) pile up, one on another's shoulders, and put a Conspicuous Trenchcoat (and usually a fedora hat) over this pyramid to make them look like an adult or a tall man. Usually a Paper-Thin Disguise. An unfortunate Sneeze of Doom by one of the participants will make the whole pyramid collapse at the worst time possible.

For a more specific form of this trope, look to Two Men, One Dress.

A much more advanced form of the trick would be Mobile Suit Human.

A much more extreme form of this trope, look to The Worm That Walks.

A mechanical version would be Combining Mecha.

Examples of Totem Pole Trench include:


  • In a 1998 Cocoa Pebbles commercial, Barney attempts to trick Fred as he normally does, only this time with Pebbles, Bam-Bam and Dino. Pebbles stands on top of Bam-Bam, and they pose as the Ghost of Christmas Past. In contrast, Barney plays the Ghost of Christmas Present while Dino plays the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come. One of the rare instances where Pebbles actually talks.
  • In a 2008 Capital One commercial, Santa Claus is supposed to depart for Christmas Eve but is too distracted customizing his Capital One credit card. It ends by showing two of the elves stacked up wearing Santa's suit heading for the sleigh.
  • In a 2009 M&M's commercial, Red and Yellow pose as the Easter Bunny comically with Red on the bottom.
  • Two kids are shown doing this on a 1997 commercial promoting the home video release of the Nickelodeon movie, Harriet the Spy.
  • A variation of this was shown in a 1989 Hi-C commercial.
  • Done to horrifying effect in a recent Snickers commercial, where the bizarre arm movements and the dead-faced mask the kids added to the ensemble sent the shrieking through the Uncanny Valley onto pure horror.

Anime & Manga

  • Done by Goten and Trunks to enter an adults-only tournament in Dragonball Z. And the best part is, they are competent at fighting in tandem like that, only stopping at #18, who blows their ruse in the semifinals.
    • A shout-out to this is in Yu-Gi-Oh, when Insector Haga (Weevil Underwood) and Dinosaur Ryuzaki (Rex Raptor) beat up a masked contestant in order to enter the KC Grand Prix tournament.
  • The Detective Boys' Club in Detective Conan do this once. Of course, in this case, they were forced to do it when they injure an actor (who they thought was a child murderer) and have to fill in for him at the community center play.
  • Astro Boy
    • In an early manga story, Astro does this with the independent lower half of another robot acting as the legs.
    • In the Astro Boy 1980 anime episode The Light Ray Robot Astro does this with Denko so Denko will help people.
  • Variant in Transformers Robots in Disguise: Optimus Prime sits on Midnight Express' shoulders so they can disguise themselves as a giant Buddha.
  • In the fourth ending of Hanamaru Kindergarten; Anzu, Hiiragi, and Koume do this and dress as Yamamoto-sensei to trick Tsuchida-sensei.
  • One Piece
    • Used by Ace, Luffy, and Sabo in their past, to sneak into the city to perform Dine-N-Dash.
    • Also when Wapol's underlings Chess and Kuromarimo "fuse" to fight Chopper at Drum Island.
  • Pokémon
    • In the episode "The Punchy Pokémon", Jessie and James did this after stealing Giant's Coat (and his Hitmonlee) in order to enter a Fighting Pokémon Tournament. Eventually, James complains that Jessie is too heavy and faints.
    • In another episode, Meowth and Jessie's Wobbuffet do this.
  • Yotsuba&!: Yotsuba and Jumbo do this, with Jumbo's shirt serving as trenchcoat. Given Jumbo's size and maturity, it sorta counts. Certainly, Asagi is willing to play along.
  • A variation of this was done on Digimon, though this one falls more under The Worm That Walks. In one episode, Davis tries to trick Veemon into Digivolving, and he does it by having a huge group of Numemon and Redvegimon pile up on each other wearing a costume that they put together. It was kind of obvious that the costume was not very well-patched, and the Numemon's eyes were clearly visible in some spots.

 Davis: That Digimon needs a new tailor!

Veemon: I think he needs to see an eye doctor!

  • Done frequently by Spritle and Chim Chim in Speed Racer
  • Soul Eater: Kilik have once his two (very tiny) partners be the head for their disguise as a cloaked Arachnophobia soldier.
    • In Episode 21 of the Soul Eater anime: Blair is fighting the (remaining) 5 Mizune sisters. She smashes four of the sisters with one spell...but the fifth sister behind her starts giggling madly. Activating the hivemind within the sisters (accompanied by speaking in sync and rhythmic finger-snapping), and do a Fusion Dance by stacking themselves atop of each other to form a large tower and the five combine to form... a Hot Witch. It Makes Sense in Context... I guess.
      • Though the 5-Mizune witch has yet to do anything but provide Fan Service, in the manga two or three Mizune can combine together to form a teenage-looking girl (the one made from three looks a bit older) actually capable of fighting.
  • One childhood flashback episode of Kochikame has Ryotsu and his two friends dress in a trenchcoat attempting to pay the price of one in a movie theater. Their disguise is blown.
  • Seen in the Hentai manga Cherry Town, where a young boy and a young girl do this... to sneak in a Love Hotels.
  • Tyson and Daichi do this in an episode of Beyblade so they can sneak into a Shop that's not for kids and get their beyblade fixed.
  • In an episode of Zettai Karen Children the main three girls do this while infiltrating a school.
  • This was also done in Episode 5 of the Little Lulu anime, in an attempt to rescue Tubby from the Westside Gang. Lulu and Willy disguised themselves as Tubby's mother, with Lulu on top and Willy on the bottom. At first, the Westside Gang don't buy the act, since Lulu doesn't say anything, having Annie do the talking for her, but when she finally convinces the Westside Gang that Tubby's mother has a bad case of laryngitis and that if "she" doesn't see her son pretty soon, there's no telling what will happen. It would've worked too, had Lulu not gotten knocked off by the fence post above that served as the entrance to the Westside Gang's territory while entering and revealed Willy in front of the Westside Gang. Hilarity Ensues.
  • In the Dr. Slump Arale-chan episode "Arale's Thief Hoyoyo Gang Part II": Arale, Gatchan and Akane stack on each other with a long trench coat, fake mustache and fedora to enter a party held in a grand castle so they can steal something. Police Chief Taro, who was monitoring outside to keep out suspicious guests, had no suspicion of the kids in their trench coat after Arale tells him that they were a "gentleman from France".

Comic Books

Comic Strips

  • Calvin and Hobbes: Once done by Calvin to get a ticket to a violent movie he was too young to see, using Hobbes as the top half of a Coat, Hat, Mask totem pole. The box office vendor, seeing Hobbes as a plush toy, was not convinced.
  • One of Piraro's Bizarro comics shows a reporter addressing the camera, while in the background a mob of bemused interviewers crowd around two boys sitting on each other's shoulders: "Ladies and gentlemen, the leading candidate in this race has just been discovered to be a couple of kids in their dad's overcoat."
  • A variation in the German strip Ottifanten, which features anthropomorphized elephants. Two kids try this trope, but since the lower one has his trunk sticking out, they're mistaken for a flasher.
  • Like the Snow White example above, some of the meadow animals did this in a Bloom County strip to give a teenage girl a dance partner.
  • Variation in one Peanuts strip where Snoopy and his bird friends try to get into the cinema as "One senior citizen, please" by standing on each others' shoulders with a bowler hat on top. The catch? No coat.
  • This was done in Little Nemo in Slumberland with Nemo in blackface standing on top of Flip standing on top of Professor.
  • Farside
    • In one strip, three dogs do this to make an attempt to catch a cat they were chasing who went up a tree. The dogs disguise themselves as a woman and have the fire department get the cat down for them.
    • In another strip, two cats disguise themselves as a dog but the dog discover this by smelling.

Fan Works

  • In this fanfiction of One Hundred and One Dalmatians: The Series, the main pups (Lucky, Cadpig and Rolly) stack up on each other wearing a trench coat and fedora and attempt to rescue one of their adopted brothers. In this case, Lucky stood on Cadpig's shoulders, and Cadpig stood on Rolly's shoulders. Surprisingly, they are successful.
  • One YouTube user made a parody on the "Silly Song" segment from Disney's Snow White using Powerpoint and the characters replaced with Sonic characters. In this parody, Tails and Amy Rose perform this trope.
  • A Girl on Sheezy Art produce a web Manga regarding Two midgets in a trench coat can be seen here. Very little of it has material that is NSFW though.
  • There exists a fanart on Deviant ART that shows Phineas and Ferb performing this.
  • Calvin performs a singular variant using stilts in Calvin and Hobbes: The Series. Lampshaded shortly afterwards:

 "That was easy. Those kids on TV should try stuff like that instead of those silly growth machines and potions."


Films — Animation

  • In All Dogs Go to Heaven, Charlie, Itchy and Anne-Marie do this to bet on horses as well as do other gambling.
  • In the Aardman Animation film Chicken Run, (a pastiche of classic wartime escape movies featuring the inmates of a chicken farm), the chickens attempt to escape by using this trope to impersonate the farmer's Gestapo-inspired wife during the pre-credits montage of failed attempts.
  • Complete with Sneeze of Doom and everything, Dopey and Sneezy do this in Disney's version of Snow White. A rare incidence in which the participants were not trying to fool anyone, but merely providing Snow White with a height-proportionate dance partner. Given that Sneezy's the one underneath, Dopey is soon blown out of the top of the disguise by Sneezy's extreme sneeze, but he does get to dance with Snow White for a bit anyway.
  • Wallace and Gromit did this in the feature A Close Shave.
  • In the Babar movie Babar, Celeste, and Zephir try to get past some rhinos by piling up on top of each other and wrap up in cloak, while Zephir puts a banana in his mouth. They would've succeeded, too, if Zephir hadn't gotten too enthusiastic.
  • In Madagascar, Mason and Phil, the two chimpanzees, are caught doing this in the train station.

 Mason: If you have any poo, feel free to throw it.

  • In Disney's version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Esmeralda is known for doing this to hide from the soldiers. She does this by carrying Djali on her shoulders and wrapping a blanket around them so they could pass as an old man.
  • A variation of this was done on The Land Before Time. Towards the end of the film, Littlefoot, Spike, Ducky and Petrie get stuck in a tar pit while Cera is being chased by a herd of Pachycephalosaurus. The other four suddenly appear stacked up and covered with tar, and they unintentionally save her by scaring the Pachycephalosaurus' away, but Cera tells them that they didn't fool her.
  • Done when Madame Souza and the Triplets band together to retrieve Champion in The Triplets of Belleville.
  • In The Brave Little Toaster to the Rescue, during the "Remember that Day" segment, Kirby and a snake do something like this to make themselves look like Rob. This was another instance where the participants were not trying to fool anyone, but merely just playing around.
  • In Dumbo, after the clowns perform their first performance with Dumbo when he was demoted to a clown, we see silhouettes of the clowns backstage getting out of their costumes. One of the clowns turns out to be two short people stacked on top of each other.
  • At the beginning of Piglet's Big Movie, Tigger and Pooh dress up as a tree as part of their plan to steal honey from a bee hive.
  • In The Rugrats Movie the babies find an abandoned circus cart then finds a trenchcoat and hat inside, some circus monkeys jump out and scares the babies.
  • In Oliver and Company, Tito, Francis and Einstein dress up as a pizza man to distract Sykes.
  • In "Tom & Jerry: Shiver Me Whiskers" Paul (a short pirate) piles himself on some monkeys while wearing a large pirate's jacket to make himself look more threatening.

Films — Live-Action

  • Done in the Mel Brooks film Silent Movie. Three normal-sized adults inexplicably attempt this to get into Burt Reynolds' house. Their explanation for being 15 feet tall is having a "glandular condition".
  • Done in the Hong Kong movie Dragon from Shao Lin.
  • Alisa and Yulia in Guest from the future
  • A standard technique of The Little Rascals. They even did it in the 1995 movie.
  • The aliens in Space Jam do this to sneak into basketball games and steal the talent from the top NBA players.
  • Austin Powers and Mini-Me do this in Goldmember with Mini-Me on the bottom.
  • Done to truly astounding effect in The Court Jester, where three normal-sized people suddenly become six little people.
  • During Sean Connery's Agamemnon scenes in Time Bandits, three dancers become six shorter dancers.
  • In the Three Stooges short Malice in the Palace, Moe, Larry, and Shemp make themselves into a very tall spirit in order to scare a guard into giving them the Rootentooten Diamond.
  • In the 1995 Casper movie, Amber and Vick do this to try to ruin Kat's Halloween party. However, the plan backfires when Fatso, Stretch and Stinky come out of nowhere and scare them away causing them to instead put on an entertaining show for the guests.
  • In Men in Black II, Jarra is revealed to be a small figure in a saucer along with his three small companions.
  • In Guest from the Future Alisa and Yulia disguise themselves as an adult to get by the pirates.
  • In Oz the Great and Powerful, Glinda announces the Munchkins when presenting her allies to Oz. Out march several ranks of incredibly tall soldiers, who each turn out to be three Munchkins inside a long coat.


  • In Miss Nelson is Back three of the ringleaders of room 207 disguise themselves as Miss Nelson.
  • In The Carniverous Carnival, Violet and Klaus use this to pose as a two-headed person.
  • Terry Pratchett's Discworld:
    • Done by a whole bunch of six inch-high Nac Mac Feegle in A Hat Full of Sky. Said Feegles uses the same trick in Wintersmith. It helps that, although everyone notices how weird they look, whenever someone tells them to get lost they just start waving around scads of money.
    • In Moving Pictures, the ticket lady at the movie theater suspects one of the wizards of being this, when she spots his (fake!) false beard.
  • Slytherin students use this to impersonate dementors in Harry Potter. Knowing why the culprits are doing this (Harry is afraid of dementors), the teachers are not amused — especially not McGonagall.
  • A similar trick was used unsuccessfully in Welkin Weasels: Thunder Oak, involving nine ferrets in a human-sized suit of armor.
  • In the children's novel Down Town, Cary's first uncanny encounter is with an apparent bag lady. The accompanying illustration makes it clear that this is actually a whole lot of tiny humanoid creatures dressed up in old clothes.
  • In The Adventures of Captain Vrungel, the captain and his friend are using it to ride a plane with only one ticket for both of them. The problems start when the Captain (he's the one below) gets bored and decides to smoke a pipe.
  • George and Harold do this in one of the Captain Underpants books, to pose as an adult to get an invention off of Melvin's genius parents. They only start to suspect something's wrong when George's hands are what takes the gadget (as Harold - who was on top - is white and George is black), but have their minds erased almost immediately after.
  • A rather creepy science fiction version appears in The Mote in Gods Eye, by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle. A small swarm of Watchmaker Moties (miniature semi-sentient aliens) try to leave the cruiser Mac Arthur by hiding inside a space suit and using the occupant's head to disguise themselves.
  • Kingdoms of Light features Khaxan Munderucu, an incredibly powerful giant evil spellcaster. He's really twenty-two goblin mages in a giant all combining their magic.
  • In The Roman Mysteries novel The Colossus of Rhodes, a midget pretends to be a giant by riding on the shoulders of his bodyguard, concealed by a long cloak.

Live-Action TV

  • Done in an episode of The Suite Life of Zack and Cody to predictable ends.
  • Done to allow two Jamanese "snakks" to avoid "big" police in the British Series A Small Problem.
  • Scrubs
    • J.D. often enlists Turk to help him masquerade as "the world's most giant doctor". The punchline is that there really is a giant doctor at Sacred Heart, who punctuates these scenes by complaining about J.D. borrowing his coat without permission.

 J.D.: We tried giant black doctor, Turk. People ran.

    • He also attempts a triple giant doctor, with Elliot on the bottom and Lonnie in the middle. It doesn't go very well.
  • Done once in Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. After the Rangers get turned into little kids, several of them get caught at a disaster scene and are taken back to the police station. Kat and Tommy pretend to be Billy's mom so that they'll be let go. It helps that the police officer they talked to couldn't see very well.
  • The Whitest Kids U' Know
    • A recent sketch took this to a ridiculous level, especially considering that the two guys in the trenchcoat (Trevor and Sam) are both well over six feet tall.
    • Used in a sketch where two boys use this to get drinks at a bar... successfully. Then they end up going home with two girls doing the same thing.
  • Bill attempts this (balancing a mannequin on his shoulders) in The Goodies episode "South Africa".
  • Michaelangello and Venus do this in an episode of Ninja Turtles the Next Mutation.
  • Referenced in How I Met Your Mother. Marshal claims he was mugged by a monkey, but later confides to Barney and Ted that it was an actual mugger, and he just didn't want Lily to buy a gun. Cue Barney: "Are you sure it wasn't two monkeys stacked on top of each other with a trench coat?"
  • According to a Saturday Night Live spoof of Broadview security this is one of the major dangers women living alone in a five bedroom house face, along with rabbis, grandfathers, k.d. Lang, and the guy from the Broadview commercials.
  • This occurs in an episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000 during the final season. In the episode where Mike and the robots make fun of a German adaptation of Hamlet, Crow and Servo dress up as a ghost and try to get Mike to believe that they're the ghost of his father, but Mike tells them that his father was still living, so the robots kept changing their identity to other people in Mike's family tree, but everyone they tried turned out to be a relative who was still living.
  • First Of The Summer Wine: Two guys are shown doing this at the very end of the episode, "Ain't Love Dangerous".
  • Done in an episode of That's So Raven with Cory and Stanley.

 Stanley: (while attempting to do a deep voice) What's happenin', my brotha.

  • Discussed in Castle. One victim happens to have just run a con on a first-grade classroom; forensic evidence says that his murderer was between 5'3" and 6' tall, so the cops conclude that the first-graders probably couldn't have done it unless they were using this trope.
  • This occurs on an episode of Honey I Shrunk the Kids. On an episode that parodies a famous Three Stooges short, Nick and his friend, Joel, do this wearing a long trench coat, a hat and a fake beard, and they do this to sneak into a wrestling arena to try to help Wayne and police chief Jake. Joel brings along his accordion and tries to play "Pop! Goes the Weasel" to see if Jake could hear it and fight better so he could win.
  • This was actually shown on an episode of the Nickelodeon TV show, What Would You Do In this instance, they showed a dwarf who wanted to ride a water slide, which had a height requirement, and he was too short. He soon found a kid who was also too short to ride, so he got the kid on his shoulders and used a blanket to cover them up with. This may have just been set up, but it was shown in real time.
  • In Community episode Basic Genealogy Shirley's sons disguise themselves so Abed's cousin can go play.

Music Videos

  • The flash video to Weird Al Yankovic's song, "Virus Alert", contains a brief scene of a group of viruses doing this to steal someone's credit card identity.

New Media

Puppet Shows

  • In an episode of Under the Umbrella Tree, the three main puppets attempted to do this with Gloria on top.
  • Skeeter and Bobby do this on an episode of Cousin Skeeter.
  • The Muppets
    • In Muppets from Space, the Muppets in Gonzo's rescue party do this to disguise themselves as doctors, at one point getting a weird look from a real doctor. Kermit stands on top of Fozzie and Pepe stands on top of Miss Piggy.
    • Done again in the 2011 movie, with Fozzie and five other Muppets each operating one limb of a human disguise to sneak into Miss Piggy's office.

 Miss Piggy: (double Head Desk) I can't believe I fell for "Muppet Man"!

  • In the Jim Henson TV special, The Tale of the Bunny Picnic, all of the bunnies dress up as a giant bunny to try to scare away the dog who was ruining their picnic. This part was actually discussed by the characters throughout the special's climax.
  • In an episode of Fraggle Rock, the main fraggles use a cloak to disguise themselves as Sir Hubris so the can get the gorgs to leave forever.


Video Games

  • A trio of Scarabs in Metal Gear Solid 4 track down Snake this way in the first half of the game's third act.
  • In the first Leisure Suit Larry game, Larry can meet a trenchcoat flasher on the sidewalk by the hotel. When you look at the flasher, the narrator comments that it's really a little person standing on the shoulders of another. They're both still flashers, though.
  • In Planescape: Torment, the bestiary entry on the Lady of Pain includes a rumor that she is actually six giant squirrels with a headdress, a robe and a ring of levitation.
  • In The Secret of Monkey Island two monkeys, in the wedding dress, as part of Elaine's cunning plan to defeat LeChuck that Guybrush inadvertantly spoils.
  • Sam and Max do a variation of this in the original Sam and Max Hit The Road game. They make a bigfoot disguise to infiltrate a bigfoot party. Sam's snout sticks out of the middle of the costume, but this being a Sam & Max game, nobody notices even when they're talking to each other. Only one bigfoot asks if Max is really having an argument with his belly button.
  • In Paper Mario, the Koopa Bros. use a variation on this. Their first form in their battle is the four of them dressed up in a strange-looking Bowser costume, though it's more like a very primitive mecha than an actual costume. During the end credits of the game, they use the remains of their costume to create a parade float.
  • The Wizard enemy in Wario Land 2 is really two Pirate Gooms wearing a robe.

Web Comics

  • Also by a collection of intelligent hamsters in Narbonic, using a paper plate with a badly drawn smiley for the face.
  • Done very unsuccessfully to try to look senatorial while visiting Washington, DC in Ozy and Millie; oddly, a semi-adult character is part of the totem pole. The lobbyist targets see through it instantly.
  • Done quite successfully in Schlock Mercenary, to create one anonymous weird alien out of three wanted-by-the-police weird aliens. Oh, and one of the three (the eponymous Schlock) is the trench coat.
  • In this Its Walky strip, Joyce and Dina use a more specific version to pretend to be Jason.
  • In this Scary Go Round strip, two goblins disguise themselves as a human teacher, using this method.

 Esther: Did we ever find out exactly what's wrong with Mr. Manuel?

  • In Minion, the Knight that came to slay the Dark Witch Meryl was in fact Rico and Ellaine wearing a helm and a cloak. It's a good thing the cloak blew open when it did, since the Knight had by that point hit several of Meryl's Berserk Buttons and she was about a second away from blasting "him" into cinders.
  • In this strip from Rooster Teeth, four kids dress as two adults to help develop a new video game.
  • Sluggy Freelance brings us "Dr. Bunwig McTwodudes", consisting of two adult men (though they sure aren't acting like it) and a bonus rabbit. It Makes Just As Much Sense in Context; they really don't have much of a reason to use a disguise like that. Since they're not short, the "doctor" ends up being very tall, though at least Riff is sitting on Torg's shoulders, not standing.

Western Animation

  • Cat Dog
    • The Ingrid Twins did this in their first episode. The Ingrid who loved Cat confessed to him at the end of the episode that she wasn't really a tall girl by taking off her dress revealing her sister underneath.
    • CatDog themselves have done this twice in the episode, "All You Can't Eat" in a montage of attempts to try to eat at Taco Depot. The first time, they were disguised as a cowboy; the second time, they were dressed like a woman.
  • Performed by Bloo and Mac on a regular basis in Fosters Home for Imaginary Friends
    • First seen in the episode "Frankie My Dear".

 Old Man Winters: Your name is "Bloo"?

Bloo: Er-hem, hem. Please call my by my first name... Orlando.

    • Bloo also did it once with Coco and Wilt to pose as a giant warrior of some kind and fight against Eduardo.
  • Done quite a few times on The Simpsons, usually as a parody or Lampshade Hanging.
    • Though they did it straight (with a twist) in one episode; after Comic Book Guy bans Bart and Milhouse from his store, Homer attempts to sneak them in by donning a trenchcoat and riding on their shoulders, identifying himself to a skeptical C.B.G. as Shaquille O'Neal.
    • Another episode has, in the midst of several people admitting to not really being Native American, one guy who is really just 2 midgets in a costume.
    • Another episode shows that the security standards at the power plant are disturbingly low: an X-ray scanner at the plant's entrance reveals two people with guns and one person to be two kids in a trenchcoat — and they are nevertheless let in without any attempt to stop them.
  • Taken to extremes in the Drawn Together episode where they were all babies. In the same episode the doctor was four babies in a lab coat.
  • In the Family Guy episode "Prick Up Your Ears", Peter and Lois have to sneak into the school auditorium to crash the abstinence lecture. Naturally, Peter has an idea. Cut to an incredibly tall man with a fat head wearing a really long trench coat and high heels. Then it pans over to Peter telling Lois that this man was big enough for them to sneak in behind.
  • Codename: Kids Next Door
    • In one episode ("Operation: M.O.V.I.E."), Numbuh Four does this by himself using several taped-together popcorn boxes as stilts to sneak into an R-rated movie. It's almost blown when he drops his ticket and can't pick it up due to the arms of the disguise being gloves attached to sticks.
    • In another episode ("Operation: M.O.U.S.T.A.C.H.E."), Numbuhs One, Two, Three and Five do this to sneak into a headquarters where they can find who is responsible for the evil moustaches turning people into cowboys. They were both teams in this case: Numbuh One was on Numbuh Five, and Numbuh Two was on Numbuh Three.
  • Used quite regularly by Donald Duck's nephews Huey, Dewey and Louie. They're known for doing this in various Disney cartoons, comics and storybooks, as well as on DuckTales, Quack Pack and Mickey Mouse Works.
    • In one episode of Mickey Mouse Works, Donald expected this was the case when a tall woman with very poor balance wobbled towards an amusement park ride that the nephews were too short to go on. Turned out she was the real deal, and when he ripped off her clothing she punched him in the face.
  • Clone High: In "A Shot in D'Arc," Napoleon and Taft use this disguise- with stilts, too- to try and score some points in a basketball game against their absurdly overpowered genetically engineered rivals. Funny because Taft is the top half.
  • In one episode of Bonkers, Bonkers does this by himself using stilts to pose as Piquel's wife.
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy
    • In the episode "Who? What? Where? Ed?", the Eds are caught in an elaborate trading sequence worthy of The Legend of Zelda, which leads them at one point to need to procure an anchor. They try to disguise themselves to steal one from the Kanker sisters, by standing on each other's shoulders and wearing a trenchcoat. Things go moderately well until, midway through the conversation, Ed sticks his head out of the trenchcoat and shouts "I am the legs!"
    • In another episode ("Ed... Pass It On"), Eddy spreads rumors around the cul-de-sac that his brother's returning. At the end of the episode, Sarah and Jimmy disguise themselves as Eddy's brother to try to scare the Eds. While the costume does fall apart, Ed still believed that they were Eddy's brother.

 Ed: Hey!... What flavor ice cream do you want?

  • Parodied by League of Super Evil, where an attempt by the main characters to try such a ruse in order to get into a fancy restaurant fails, mainly because there is a person right in front of them who happens to look just like them in their disguise.

 "We should have gone in before that other guy."

  • Inverted by Dick Spanner in a scene where Dick — who, as a robotic Marlowe-style PI, naturally wears a trenchcoat and fedora at all times — must get into a "smalls-only" establishment with a maximum height limit:

 "What the goons didn't realize was, under the coat I was walkin' on my knees."

  • The Powerpuff Girls
    • In "Candy is Dandy", the girls talk to Mojo Jojo and try to talk him into committing more crimes so that they could take him out and bust him out of jail on a regular basis so that the mayor can reward them with more candy. During this scene, the girls were stacked up and wearing a trench coat and fedora so that nobody else in Townsville will notice it's them talking with Mojo. Mojo was also wearing a trench coat and fedora in this scene just to be extra cautious.
    • In "I See a Funny Cartoon in Your Future", the girls do this to try to capture Madame Argentina. Bubbles was at the head of the disguise wearing a fake moustache.
  • The monster protagonists sometimes use this to pass as human in Aaahh Real Monsters.
  • Johnny Test
    • In "Downhill Johnny", Johnny and Dukey do this to sneak past the ski captain to shred the Bohemoth. The ski captain didn't buy it since numerous kids have already tried to fool him by doing that.
    • In "Take Your Johnny to Work Day", Susan and Mary do this to sneak into a top secret lab, but they soon discover that Johnny and Dukey have done the exact same thing, and then, for some unknown reason, Johnny wanted to do a chicken fight with them.
  • In The Fairly Odd Parents episode "Love at First Height" A.J. and Chester do this in order to be tall enough to ride a Rollercoaster, however they end up being mistaken for an adult and get taken to Adult Land.
  • Done frequently in the Scooby Doo franchise, usually by Scooby and Shaggy (most of the time, Scooby is on top).
    • In one episode, all five of the gang members stacked up to form a really tall ghost to try to scare away a couple monsters.
    • In another episode, Scrappy did this with his friends, Duke and Annie, so they could sneak onto a subway by paying admission for just one person, but their trench coat came off just as soon as they passed the turnstyle.
    • In the What's New Scooby Doo episode, "Gentlemen, Start Your Monsters", the culprit turned out to be Jimmy and his sister Cindy. Jimmy was on Cindy's shoulders in a jumpsuit.
  • In an episode of The Flintstones, Fred and Barney did it to try to sneak Barney out of an Arabian palace. Barney was the one underneath so that the others wouldn't recognize his face, but strangely, he didn't seem at all affected by Fred's weight.
  • In an episode of The Jetsons, George and Jane did it to sneak by two mysterious-looking men at a horse race using a trench coat they borrowed from a man who was sitting next to them.
  • In an episode of Jonny Quest, Johnny and Hadji disguised themselves as a ghost to try to scare Bandit. It didn't work.
  • In an episode of the Dennis the Menace US 80's cartoon, Dennis and Joey did it to sneak into a restaurant. A couple times, the manager heard Joey talking from inside the coat, and Dennis always covered it up by saying his stomach could talk.
  • Done frequently by Alvin and The Chipmunks.
    • On an episode of The Alvin Show, the Chipmunks did this to try and get a radio station to play their new record, and they probably would have succeeded if Theodore hadn't poked his head out of the disguise and said, "You're very, very welcome!"
  • Care Bears
    • In the episode, "The Camp Out", Playful Heart Monkey and Funshine Bear disguised themselves as a swamp monster just to play a joke on the other Care Bears.
    • In another episode, Hugs, Tugs and Brave Heart dress up as a mummy to scare Mr. Beastly. They succeeded.
  • Done a couple times by Cubbi and Tummi on Adventures of the Gummi Bears.
  • In an episode of Garfield and Friends, Garfield and Odie disguise themselves as a police officer to save Jon from a crazy car salesman.
  • In an episode of Heathcliff and The Catillac Cats, Heathcliff, Hector and Wordsworth do this to try to return Mungo to his original owner. While they do succeed, they afterward get chased by a gang of dogs. It also didn't help much that Wordsworth was on the bottom, and since he was on roller skates, it sent the cats on a really wild ride.
  • In an episode of Animaniacs, the Warner kids do this to pass as Miss Flamiel. In this case, their costume was an exact replica of her.
  • Timon and Pumbaa have done this a few times in Timon and Pumbaa. In all but one of these attempts, they always failed because Pumbaa always blew their cover.
  • This happened once on an episode of The Wacky Adventures of Ronald McDonald. On the video containing the episode, "Birthday World", Ronald has the Chicken McNuggets stand on top of each other and dresses them up as a weird-looking tree.
  • In the Gumby short, "Wishful Thinking", Gumby and Pokey break into Prickle's house dressed as a ghost attempting to trick Prickle into telling them what he wished for on his birthday. Unfortunately, just as Prickle was about to tell them, Pokey lost his equilibrium causing Gumby to fall off his back and on top of Prickle. The fall caused Prickle to start screaming thinking the ghost had swallowed him.
  • During a segment of "The Off-Beats" in an episode of Ka Blam, the five Off-Beats do this to surpass as the "president" with September as the head. They do this to try to fool the Populars into returning Betty-Ann's glasses. Since September had a very mature-sounding voice, the Populars bought it.
  • In the South Park episode "Starvin' Marvin in Space", the boys do this and pretend to be Tom Brokaw so they can distract the government while Marvin boards his people onto the spacecraft. When Kyle makes a comment from inside the costume, Cartman at the head tries to cover by saying that he had some bad burritos today.
  • In the Shaun the Sheep short, "Take-Away", Shaun and a couple of his sheep buddies do this using a trench coat they decloaked from a scarecrow so they could take the bus into town and buy pizzas for the entire flock. One of the rare instances where the trick actually succeeds.
  • Goof Troop
    • In one episode, Goofy volunteers to skateboard on the world's tallest half pipe when pro skater, Slammer McTwist, chickened out on doing so. Thinking he'd fail, Max and PJ arrive the next day posing as Goofy, and they actually pull it off very well.
    • In another episode, Max makes an attempt to sneak past a bully who beats him up every day. He does this by riding his bike with Pistol sitting on his shoulders wearing PJ's jacket.
    • In the episode, "Pistolgeist", Max and PJ do this yet again to try to act like Pistol's imaginary friend, Inky, with PJ on top. Pistol didn't buy it.
  • In the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog episode, "Big Daddy", Scratch, Grounder and Coconuts make an attempt to capture Sonic by dressing up as a gorilla.
  • The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
    • In the episode, "Cleanliness is Next to Impossible", Pooh, Tigger and Piglet dress up as a crayon while they're in Crud's world in an attempt to rescue Christopher Robin.
    • In the episode, "To Catch a Hiccup", Tigger has Owl and Rabbit dress up as a monster to scare the hiccups out of Piglet.
  • In an episode of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 1987, Donatello and Raphael dress up as a ghost to play a trick on Michaelangello.
  • Class of 3000
    • Used by Kim, Kam and Eddie to impersonate an alien in the episode "Brotha from the Third Rock".
    • Madison and Little D do this in the music video "My Mentor" to persued a bouncer to let them into a night club.
  • In an episode of Brandy and Mr. Whiskers, Whiskers and Gaspar do this to sneak into an amusement park.
  • In the Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi episode "The Ride Stuff", Ami and Yumi try to sneak Kaz on a ride that Kaz is short for. Ami, Yumi, and Kaz disguise themselves as tall British ladies. Ami stands on stills, and Yumi stands on Kaz. Surprisingly, the guy working at the ride bought it. Kaz even let out a Sneeze of Doom, and the guy didn't even act the least suspicious.
  • In the Sylvester cartoon Room and Bird, while Tweety, Sylvester and Hector are chasing each other in a hotel that doesn't allow pets, there's an instance where they almost get caught by the doorman, but they manage to quickly put on some women's clothing and stack up in order to fool him. After which, the chase continues.
  • In the Porky Pig cartoon "The Wearing of the Grin", two leprechauns do this while playing a prank on Porky.
  • Sylvester and Hector dress up as Santa Claus in an episode of The Sylvester and Tweety Mysteries.
  • Tiny Toon Adventures
    • In the episode "Hare Raising Night" Buster, Babs, Hampton, Plucky & Melvin the monster do this to look like they've been fused together by wearing a lab coat. Their cover was blown, however, when Plucky got too enthusiastic over Dr. Splicer taking their picture.
    • In "Pluck' of the Irish", a beautiful lass reveals herself to be three leprechauns in disguise.
  • On a Halloween special of Eek the Cat, Wendy and J.C. dress up as a giant chicken to go trick-or-treating, but even with the two of them stacked up, the costume was still too big for them. Eek attempted to solve the problem by making himself the head of the costume, which somewhat helped, but it wasn't long until he was suddenly flung out of the costume causing Wendy and J.C. to go the rest of the night as a headless chicken.
  • In an episode of Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers, the Rangers disguised themselves as birds. Gadget stands on top of Monty, and Dale stands on top of Chip.
  • Arnold & Gerald do this in the Hey Arnold episode "Door #16".
  • In an episode of Peabody's Improbable History, Peabody and Sherman do this to stand in for an actor on a stage play.
  • In the Tale Spin episode "Stuck on You," Baloo and Don Karnage are forced to do this when the two are near-permanently glued together.
  • Nancy and Flip do this in an episode of The Amazing Chan and The Chan Clan. When Nancy is asked how old she is, she responds: "Nine...teen."
  • Doug
    • On an episode of the Nickelodeon version, Doug watches a horror movie several times but never sees the monster because he always hides his eyes when it appears. When he finally does see it, he clearly saw the zipper on the costume and laughed about it. After that, Doug had a dream where he met the monster and unzipped the zipper, and the person inside the costume turned out to be three poodles stacked on top of each other.
    • On an episode of the Disney version ("Doug Grows Up"), Doug and Porkchop do this on the episode's title card.
  • Muppet Babies
    • In the episode, "Of Mice and Muppets", this trope was taken to a rather ridiculous level when just about all of the Muppet Babies did this to form one really tall figure in an attempt to rescue Gonzo from the Wall-Wonker.
    • In another episode, Animal, Fozzie and Gonzo do this while Piggy is singing a song about being a nanny.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants
    • In the episode "The Great Patty Caper", the nanny reveal she is two toddlers.
    • Done by Mr. Krabs and Plankton in "The Other Patty". With Plankton on the bottom.
    • Mr. Krabs and SpongeBob do this in the episode "Chum Bucket Supreme", to sneak into the Chum Bucket unnoticed. using a giant clamshell for the head with Mr. Krabs peeking out. Plankton saw through their disguise however.
  • In the Inspector Gadget episode "Weather in Tibet", Penny and a friend of hers do this to sneak past some guards.
  • In The Super Mario Bros Super Show episode "Hooded Robin and his Mario Men", Hooded Robin and Toad dress up a Frygal to distract Fryguy.
  • On an episode of Fantastic Max, Max, FX, AB and a new robot friend of their's do this to get into a bar where they aren't allowed so they can talk with an alien they're trying to meet up with.
  • Done Occasionally by the main animals in Shirt Tales.
  • Popeye's Nephews did this in the Popeye short, "Wimmin is a Myskery", to pose as Popeye and get the pie Olive Oyl Made for him.
  • In the Darkwing Duck episode "Trading Faces", Launchpad (in Honker's Body) and Darkwing (in Gosalyn's body) disguise themselves as a General to sneak onto a base because the guard wouldn't take them seriously.
  • In the Tom and Jerry cartoon, "Angel Kittens", the three kittens do this to fool Tom, but Tom doesn't buy it.
  • Camp Lazlo
    • In the episode "Parents Day", Lazlo , Raj , Skip and Chip try to surprise Scoutmaster Lumpus by pretending to be his parents who he hasn't seen in a long time.
    • In "Cheese Orbs", Patsy and Gretchen do this to pose as an alien to scare off everybody.
  • Phineas and Ferb pulls this with an oversized superhero costume in "The Beak".
  • Stoked: In the episode "The Very Very Very Very Very Important Guest", George and Grommet stack up on each other and with Grommet on top so they can pass off as Broseph.
  • In an episode of Josie and the Pussy Cats as the gang puts on a fashion show to distract some villians. Josie stands on Alan and wears a large dress.
  • Performed in the Dungeons and Dragons episode "The Lost Children".
  • The Penguins do this in The Penguins of Madagascar episode "Brush with Danger" to sneak into an art museum and uses one of Kawalski's inventions to do the talking.
  • In addition to the movie, this trope was also performed on the All Dogs Go to Heaven TV series.
    • At the beginning of the episode, "Charlie the Human", Charlie and Itchy are shown doing this in the grocery store with Itchy on the bottom. Charlie's explanation for being on top is because he thought he looked better in the glasses.
    • Charlie and Itchy also do this in the Christmas special (this time, with Itchy on top) to try to retrieve back what Carface stole from the poor pups. Sadly, Carface saw through their disguise.
  • Performed in Guardian Fairy Michel when Michel and Joe pull one off in episode 13 to sneak in a police station.
  • Batman the Brave And The Bold: Scooby Doo and Shaggy do this while posing as the ghost of "Bulldog" Finney to scare the Joker and the Penguin in "Bat-Mite Presents: Batman's Strangest Cases!"
  • Lilly, Carl and Tred perform this in Get Muggsy to help get to the park to rescue their friend.
  • Todd and Jacobo do this in The Replacements episode "Conrad's Day Off" to bust Riley out of detention, however Mr. Vanderbausch didn't seem too tempted by them. Their cover was blown on numerous occasions.
  • On an episode of Saban's Adventures of Oliver Twist, Oliver, Dodger and Charlie try to pose as aristocrats to sneak past guards to participate in a horse race competition. Oliver sat on Charlie's shoulders wearing a coat and hat. At first, the plan seemed to work, but it didn't last long when Charlie grabbed a handful of orderves, then he ran out of the disguise going on an eating rampage.
  • On an episode of The Ren and Stimpy Show, Ren and Stimpy disguise themselves as the wife of the house to sneak past an angry dog so Ren can snatch a sample of some of his favorite food. They were unsuccessful.
  • My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic
    • In the episode "Stare Master", Scootaloo stands on top of Apple Bloom with a bucket on her head and drapes a rug around them so that they could pretend to be a creature while Sweetie Bell chases them. In this case, they were trying to be "Creature Catchers" so they can try to get their cutie marks.
    • In the episode, "Dragon Quest", Twilight Sparkle, Rainbow Dash and Rarity disguise themselves as a dragon to check on Spike while he hangs out with the big dragons. Twilight was at the head of the costume standing on top of Rainbow Dash while Rarity posed as the hind quarters.