Created By: TezcatMarch 5, 2010

Kukris Are Kool

Name Space:
Page Type:
Good for chopping.

Inspired by the MacheteAwesome YKTTW, how about a trope featuring examples of Kukris?

A Kukri is a heavy Nepalese knife used as both a tool and as a weapon. The most distinctive feature of this weapon is that the blade has a deflected angle with a thick spine and a single sharp cutting edge; this causes the end section of the blade to strike square on, greatly increasing chopping effectiveness. It is most famously known as a part of the regimental weaponry and heraldry of Gurkha fighters. Forming part of the survival equipment carried by airmen during the early 1940s conflict in Burma, the Kukri is an essential item equally effective at hacking through jungles as well as self defense.

For a relatively obscure weapon from Nepal, they feature relatively frequently in the media, easily spotted because of their distinctive (and threatening) shape.

Like Katanas, there is a persistent myth that the blade must 'taste blood' before it is sheathed. This is untrue, as a Kukri is useful for far more than just violence.

Noted on this wiki as a Swiss Army Weapon

Needs A Better Name, Up For Grabs

Indexes: I Like Swords, Weapons And Wielding Tropes


Manga & Anime
  • Shenhua from Black Lagoon fights with a much more practical version of a Whip Sword - twin whip kukri. She's good enough to take people's heads off with them from thirty feet away.
  • The One Piece character Helmeppo fights with two Kukri.
  • Mamungi from The Breaker uses a pair of these.

  • In the movie Waterworld Kevin Costner's character is briefly seen using a Kukri.
  • In the third Resident Evil movie, Alice wields two Kukri blades.

  • Jonathan Harker wielded a Kukri in Bram Stoker's Dracula.
  • White Court Vampire Thomas Raith in TheDresdenFiles uses a Kukri in battle.
  • The Drow Ranger Valas Hune dual wields them in War of the Spider Queen.
  • Sten: the Gurkha mercenaries who guard the Emperor carry these (obviously). In later books, Sten carries one as a memento from his time as their commander.

Live Action TV
  • In Heroes Edgar wields two kukri blades.
  • In Angel, Wesley is killed with one of these.

Tabletop Games
  • In the Kingdom of Champions supplement for the Champions roleplaying game, one of the members of the UK's national superhero team 'The New Knights' is called Gurkha and weilds kukris.
  • In Dungeons And Dragons Kukris are exotic melee weapons, doing something like d4 damage but with the best Critical Hit range of all weapons of its size.

Video Games
  • The melee weapon of the Sniper class in Team Fortress 2
  • An exotic melee weapon in Neverwinter Nights 1, based on the rules of Dungeons And Dragons.
  • Seen in Soul Nomad And The World Eaters
  • In Resident Evil 5, Sheva uses a Kukri
  • Kukris are used by Ellia and Dr. Lindsey from Eternal Darkness.
  • In Uncharted 2, the character Tenzin carries a Kukri.
  • A melee weapon in Combat Arms
  • The Wretcher's Blade in Fable 2 is a very large version of a Kukri.
  • In Mortal Kombat 4, Kai uses the "Gurkha Knife" or Kukri as his weapon of choice
  • Warrant Officer Emile-A239, one of the SPARTAN-III teammates in Halo: Reach, uses a Kukri-esque bladed weapon.
  • In Jumper: Griffin's Story griffin can use a kukri
  • In Castlevania:Symphony of the Night, there's an enemy called Gurkha, who wields what is supposed to be a very stylized giant kukri.
    • Gurkha Masters also appear in Order of Ecclesia.

Real Life
  • Famously used by the Gurkha soldiers of Nepal, who traditionally serve in the British Army. See Nepali With Nasty Knifes
Community Feedback Replies: 26
  • March 4, 2010
    well, the kukri is no longer an obscure weapon, although it originated from nepal. it's pretty well-known and many (western) knife companies make their own variant. mostly due to its versatility, being large enough to be used as a machete/general purpose blade, but weighted like an axe for very efficient chopping.
  • March 4, 2010
    • Sten: the Gurkha mercenaries who guard the Emperor carry these (obviously). In later books, Sten carries one as a memento from his time as their commander.
  • March 4, 2010
    In the Kingdom of Champions supplement for the Champions roleplaying game, one of the members of the UK's national superhero team 'The New Knights' is called Gurkha and weilds kukris.
  • March 4, 2010
    Unknown Troper
    In Castlevania Symphony of the Night, there's an enemy called Gurkha, who wields what is supposed to be a very stylized giant kukri.
  • March 4, 2010
    Mamungi from The Breaker uses a pair of these.
  • March 4, 2010
    For a trope title, how about Kukris Are Kool?
  • March 5, 2010
    In Angel, Wesley is killed with one of these.
  • March 5, 2010
    I've added the examples so far and changed the title to Kukris Are Kool... a good title, although I'd probably be happier if I could think of anything else beginning with a K that rhymed with 'Kukri', but that's probably asking too much.

    Descriptive text is stolen from the TF 2 wiki, as it is a concise summary. I've added a couple examples I can think of, and stolen a whole load from The Other Wiki 's article, here: Please add a description, examples and if anyone familiar with the particulars of Wiki Magic would like to launch, go right ahead.

    If anyone can suggest a more stylish image, perhaps an action shot from one of the examples, please feel free to suggest one.
  • March 5, 2010
    [add this under the Castlevania point:
    • Gurkha Masters also appear in Order of Ecclesia.
  • March 5, 2010
    >>An exotic melee weapon in Neverwinter Nights 1

    In D&D, to be precise. It has something like a d4 damage but has the best crit range of all weapons of its size.
  • March 5, 2010
    A note-to-self reply - Updated with the examples so far.
  • March 5, 2010
    Is this anything other than "Kukris exists"? A lot of stuff exists. There isn't any connection between the examples, there's nothing tropeworthy about the blade- note the complete lack of anything story telling related in the description.

    So is there a trope coming around any time soon?
  • March 5, 2010
    @Some Sort Of Troper: It's to list incidences of this relatively uncommon weapon in media. See the similar pages from the Weapons And Wielding Tropes page, such as; Chainsaw Good, Drop The Hammer, Epic Flail, Prongs Of Poseidon, This Is A Drill, An Axe To Grind, Wolverine Claws.

    It'd be nice if we could come up with some kind of common character-theme for the Kukri user examples we have thus far, to fir it on the Weapon Of Choice page. So far there's little except possibly people from India or who're well-travelled enough to have met Gurkhas.
  • March 5, 2010
    'There are other pages like it' is not a valid argument in its favor. Wolverine Claws don't exist in real life, and chainsaws, drills, and hammers aren't even really weapons -- being treated as weapons is where the trope comes in, so this isn't the same thing at all.
  • March 5, 2010
    Relatively uncommon means actually very common just not a standard european weapon and isn't any basis on which to have a trope.
  • March 5, 2010
    Cool Kukri?

    Common weapons are tropable.
  • March 6, 2010
    No they're not. If you can't tell me how they're adding to the story then you can't claim that they are adding to the story.
  • March 6, 2010
    Some Sort Of Troper, so, you obviously state that the whole Weapons And Wielding Tropes index must be wiped out. OK. Have you got any, you know, arguments for doing so?
  • March 6, 2010
    In Big Trouble In Little China, the Storms at one point wield kukris.
  • March 7, 2010
    Actual arguments? Oh right because what I was typing before was just the results of me bashing my head against the keyboard. Now this is difficult because I have to find a way to fulfill the hideous strawman position that wants to delete everything.

    Oh dear, I guess I can't do it. I guess I'm just going to have to point out that listing unlinked occurances in fiction with no pattern of effect on story telling and no shared convention fails to meet any point of the definition on Trope and that I can point out for all of the tropes on Weapons And Wielding Tropes what that shared convention and recurring pattern of story telling is and its effect on the fictional work.
  • March 7, 2010
    Well, the Kukri as a trope has been evolving as it's aged. Originally, it was an exotic weapon trope that was a shorthand way of identifing its wielder as a Gurkha, then as someone who likely spent significant time in India.

    Now it's moving into identifing the wielder as someone prepared to inflict serious damage in a knife fight. The Kukri, like many knives, has serious tool uses, but it is particularly damageing as a weapon of the knife class.
  • March 7, 2010
    Some Sort Of Troper, I saw your so called actual arguments. Like hammer not being a weapon. Then I decided that you were just joking.

    Just so you know, common weapons are traditionally tropable. The main reason for doing so is, when it's not just a Weapons Kitchen Sink, there are some reasons to choose one weapon instead of another. Heroes Prefer Swords, Katanas Are Just Better, Staff Chicks and Kung Fu Monks using staves, berserkers swinging their giant axes in rage...

    Kukris are exotic. That's all you need to now. Oh, and they are common. That makes it a trope.

    Go on and try to convince everybody to delete the whole Weapons And Wielding Tropes index, I don't mind, I'd even like to watch and take pictures.
  • March 7, 2010
    Unknown Troper
  • March 7, 2010
    @UT Unknown Troper, hmmm, it's listed there as being a martial weapon, but I distinctly remember that in Neverwinter Nights it required the 'exotic' proficiency feat. It looks like it can count as either an exotic or a martial, depending on the setting, game and edition. I'll make a note.

    Regarding the discussion of the validity of this YKTTW; firstly, I think it's a useful page to have, listing uses of something that's not that common in fiction, and secondly listing these examples allows us to look at the possible similarities in how users are presented. So far we have a link to India (Nepal in particular), and associations of international travel/adventure.

    I'm unfamiliar with most of the examples listed, so if anyone can pick up on any other characteristics, we can examine the cultural significance of the weapon.
  • March 9, 2010
    YKTTW Bump - I think we have enough examples to launch, but is there still debate over the validity of this page, and does anyone want to add any other comments or some witty introductory text?
  • March 9, 2010
    Right, I never said that hammers weren't weapons.

    The tropes made of common weapons... well look:
    • Heroes prefer swords
    • Katanas are just better
    • Staff 'Chicks

    The good tropes draw out points about how the weapon is used to present some other idea or quality in the story. The sword is heroic, Katanas are presented as inherently superior in every way often to the point of defying sense, The Chick will tend to use a staff- an unedged and mostly nonfatal weapon with increased reach.

    And if there is a retort on the lines of pointing out a trope page that doesn't work this way then my point is that that page shouldn't be so.

    All we have for the Kukri that isn't describing the knife itself in real life is the third paragraph. Now if there's more to add to that then say it now or forever hold your piece but that means you have to consider the examples, which ones don't fit into the tropeable theme and which ones haven't been written in any way respective of that theme.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable