• 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:Voodoo-doll 163.jpg

A stock trick in any Hollywood Voodoo practitioner's arsenal is the Voodoo Doll, a tiny figurine created to vaguely resemble another person (sometimes using that person's hair or blood) which is then tormented in various ways, such as by being held over a fire or jabbed with needles. As the doll is damaged, so is the person connected to it, making it a wonderful long-range means of revenge.

In reality, so-called "voodoo dolls" are not a part of Vodou at all. They originated in Europe where they were called poppets, and Vodou's actual use of dolls (which have nothing to do with sympathetic magic) was most likely mistaken for this by European onlookers. And contrary to what Hollywood shows, they aren't just for torture. Some places in New Orleans and Haiti do sell "voodoo dolls" marketed to ignorant tourists, though.

Occasionally Played for Laughs in which the victim jerks around like a puppet when the doll is moved.

Examples of Voodoo Doll include:


  • Many commercials like using voodoo dolls for humorous effect, such as the Sprint Commercial with the guy sticking pins into dolls representing overages and roaming fees.


  • Skip Beat gives us Kyouko, who has quite the spread of voodoo dolls based off Sho. In the early part of the manga, she also has a large amount of Ren-themed ones as well. This later becomes a point when she gives Maria a realistic Ren-doll for her birthday. In more recent arcs, she has created a Reino doll in around 7 minutes.
  • Lime-iro Senkitan's Kinu Fukushima has personalized voodoo dolls for everyone aboard the Amanohara, and non-personalized ones for other occasions. Her favorite thing to do with them is stab nails through them to stop her friends from getting in her way, for love or otherwise.
  • Basil Hawkins in One Piece has them stored inside his body somehow. When attacked, he remained unharmed while the collateral damage took out buildings around him. Elsewhere, several unfortunate bystanders were flattened because they'd taken the blows for him. This also overlapped with a One winged Angel, since Hawkins can somehow become a gigantic living voodoo doll as well

Comic Books

  • In one issue of The Spectre, the eponymous hero fights against a Gypsy who uses one of these to attack people for no good reason.
  • In Prisoners of the Sun, the Incas reveal this was how the seven archaeologists were tortured remotely. When the dolls are destroyed, the archaeologists are released from their trances.
  • Baron Sunday, a minor Superman villain from the 80s, was a crimelord who used voodoo dolls to assassinate his competitors.
  • In a Richie Rich comic book story, Richie's father was the victim of a voodoo doll.


  • In The Wise Man's Fear, mommets (figurines made of wax or clay and using bits of hair or blood) are key components in Malefesance magic. Kvothe uses an even more grisly version, stabbing an actual human corpse to maim people nearby.
  • In Witches Abroad Mrs. Gogol has a voodoo doll intended to be Lily, but when Granny Weatherwax gets in her way she makes it of her instead, stabbing it in the leg and making her stagger. Granny Weatherwax deals with it by sticking her hand into a torch, causing the doll to burst into flame.
  • In Sweets to the Sweet, Creepy Child Irma makes a voodoo doll of her abusive father, rendering him bedridden and unable to carry out his regular beatings of her. When his equally Jerkassish brother figures out what's going on, she claims the doll's just a bit of candy, and bites its head off to prove it...
  • This is how one of the witches defeats Septimus in Stardust.
  • In Fool Moon, Harry Dresden uses the same principle to temporarily disable a very powerful loup-garou. Saying precisely how would be a spoiler -- and ruin a Crowning Moment of Funny.

Live Action TV

Tabletop Games

  • In the Masque of the Red Death setting for Ravenloft, certain voodoo-inspired magic users can do this.
  • Scion features voodoo dolls as a possible Relic for a child of the Loa; however, as the authors have done their research, they swiftly outline that the dolls are associated with hoodoo, but some of the Loa have picked them up for laughs.
  • A number of cards from the early days of Magic the Gathering (such as Black Vise and The Rack) feature a poppet getting maimed somehow to represent effects that targeted your opponent. The poppet itself got its own card in Time Spiral, Stuffy Doll.

Video Games

  • These crop up fairly often in Monkey Island games. They tend to work at a limited range, and the spell to make them is a riff on the "Old New Borrowed and Blue" quatrain.
  • In Star Craft 2 Gabriel Tosh has a thing for these, and if you chose to side with Nova instead of him he tries to use one on Raynor it gets Tychus instead.
  • The title character of Voodoo Vince is a voodoo doll who can perform Limit Breaks based on doing absurdly violent things to himself.
  • In Blood, a voodoo doll is one of the weapons you can find.


  • This Sinfest strip.
  • Gwynn of Sluggy Freelance made one of Riff and had some fun poking it in the eye, microwaving it, and throwing it in a desk drawer.
  • The Repository of Dangerous Things has a few including one "living" doll. It's kind of cute, but smacking it around turns out to be a very bad idea, as it can choose whom it depicts and is capable of self-mutilation (the doll can be repaired later, after all).
    • For 25 cents Mama Zora can make a reversible version of this (see next pages).

Web Original

  • Played for Laughs in Teen Girl Squad Issue 12. Early in, The Ugly One is seen sticking a series of pins into a doll resembling the Arrow'd Guy. Later on, the Arrow'd Guy jumps up from behind a skeleton with an Ugly One voodoo doll, screaming "BAD JUJU!!!"

Western Animation

  • Filmation The New Adventures of Superman episode "The Deadly Super-Doll". A supervillain named The Sorcerer is a master of the ancient arts of wizardry, occult ritual and Black Magic. He creates a Superman doll from the magic clay of the ancient wizard Philbias and uses it to control the Man of Steel's body.
  • A variant of this trope appears in The Smurfs episode "Denisa's Greedy Doll" when Gargamel puts Greedy's apron on Denisa's doll and casts a spell on it so that whatever happens to the doll wearing the apron also affects Greedy. The Smurfs turn the tables by having the doll wear fabric from Gargamel's robe.

Real Life

  • Many Companies such as Watchover Voodoo make Voodoo Doll keyrings. You can sometimes find them in Gachapon machines.
    • Unlike other examples, though, the watchover Voodoo Dolls usually look like fictional characters or generic icons rather than real people. They are also said to bring Good Luck to the owner, rather than being used for attacking enemies/rivals of the owner.