The reason so many people find dolls to be scary is due to a psychological principle that Freud called “the uncanny.” The feeling of the uncanny is the sense of fear, horror, and revulsion that people feel toward things that look very near to being alive, but aren’t. This includes things like mannequins, statues, dolls, and even corpses. You have probably heard the term, “the uncanny valley” in relation to computer animations of human figures, as the revulsive feeling of the uncanny actually increases the closer a humanlike figure gets to looking real without actually being real.
Dolls have long been associated with evil spirits, as they are human figures who are very much not human. But are there really as many haunted dolls as people say?
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In this video, someone has used a computer program to animate the faces of this collection of dolls in a trunk in order to make them sing along to the Simon and Garfunkel hit, “The Sound of Silence.” It’s not a perfect system (if you look closely at a few dolls, it appears their eyeballs are singing?) but it’s plenty enough to creep you out.
“I pray these don’t show up in my dreams tonight,” says one viewer.
“I’m more suspicious of the dolls that aren’t singing,” comments another.
“And the TSA never checked an old steamer trunk again,” jokes a third.
But other people, the kind that dig creepy dolls, appreciated this video. “It's the most wonderful time of the year!” says one spooky season fan.