ASK A QUESTION "Es una mosquita muerta."
a ´mosquita muerta´ is someone who appears as innocent and quiet but is always in pursuit of controlling other´s life, especially related to couple relationships. It´s similar to a hypocrite, but it´s nothing to do because s/he is not telling others what to do while doing otherwise, and does not show off unexisting virtues. ¨hacerse la mosquita muerta¨ (which is the exact expression) means to play the coy and innocent but never missing an opportunity to take advantage. It´s a wolf in lamb´s suit. To be considered a ´ mosquita muerta´ you have taken advantage of a situation to your own benefit.
So, hacerse la mosquita muerta is NOT a harmless inoffensive behaviour.
On the contratry, a mosquita muerta seems inoffensive on the surface but on a certain point s/he turns into an expert manipulator. And s/he has something of a chamaleonic behaviour.
I don´t know what´s the translation. Maybe there isn´t one, but I don´t think goody-goodies conveys the same meaning. However, I have always thought that Maude Flanders looks like a mosquita muerta.
Someone proposed this translation: Parecer una mosquita muerta = ¨to look as if butter wouldn't melt in one's mouth¨. However, a mosquita muerta always shows her real self in the end.
Simon & Schusters describe a mosquita muerta as ¨someone feigning meekness but never failing to take advantage of an opportunity ¨ But they don´t propose a translation!!
But, don't be afraid. "Una mosquita muerta" can be someone inoffensive.
We usually say "es una mosquita muerta" for someone who does not call the attention of anybody with her behaviour and someone who is inoffensive.
Don't exaggerate!. Only if you say the typical comment "y parecía una mosquita muerta" after the inoffensive creature has given you some surprises with her behaviour. You have guessed something new.
You usually say that when you guess the opposite: that she was not what she seemed to be.
"Una mosquita muerta" can be used in other contexts. For example: I do not trust in that type of inoffensive creature. Actually, you want to say: they never are what they seem.
Then you say: no me fío de la gente que parecen mosquitas muertas. They always give you unexpected surprises.
Something like a "goody goody two shoes"???
Persona de ánimo o genio apagado, pero que no pierde la oportunidad de actuar en su provecho. Persona que se hace la tonta y finge no entender las cosas
one dead mosquito. (bloodsucker that got what what's coming to him.)
Based on Mediterrunio's comments, I'd suggest "a snake in the grass".
ser or parecer una mosquita muerta
to look as if butter wouldn’t melt in one’s mouth
If someone acts in that seamingly inoffensive manner but is in fact trying to
bring you down we say ,"you have been white Anted". Because White Ants
work unseen and silently to undermine the foundations of your house.
They are a terrible scourge here.
Oooh!!! I worked with a teacher like this last year. Now I know what to call her in Spanish. Sorry I still but I don't know what to call her in English, except two faced, which is kind of the same but not exactly. A two faced person is all sweet and lovely to your face, but goes around talking bad about you behind your back. Oh, another term might be a back stabber, but a back stabber is not necessarily innocent seeming, although they could be.
another possible interpretation of "mosquita muerta" is somebody that although somewhat slutty, comes across as virtuous
From what I have observed, mostly in telenovelas and radio dramas, a person called una mosca muerta seems most often to be a woman who tries to appear to be honest and of virtue but in reality acts in her own interest. She either is a villainess who wants to take advantage of the heroine or turns out to be falsely accused and/or misunderstood.
In some pop songs she might be the best friend who is really a boyfriend stealer.
also, a mousy girl
I also found this which seems it could sometimes be appropriate.
Hacerse la mosquita muerta - to play dumb