[[quoteright:294:[[Characters/SegaHardGirls http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rsz_59f1bf00cd0ddd6ebfbc3357dd2720b4.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:294:[-You really can't get more American than that.-] ]]

->''"See? You can tell he's American from his blond hair and cowboy hat!"''
-->-- '''WebVideo/JesuOtaku''' on a side character from ''Anime/DigimonTamers''

In foreign media, Americans are often either cowboys or dressed so similarly to an archtypical cowboy that it makes no difference. Expect a ten-gallon hat, button-up shirt, jeans, boots and maybe a vest, poncho or duster for good measure. Apparently in {{Eagleland}}, TheWildWest never quite ended.

This is a case of SmallReferencePools, where America has become so synonymous with cowboy culture that people overseas use it to characterize the entire country. This is, of course, partially TruthInTelevision: TheWestern is a distinctly American genre, and a lot of stereotypical cowboy traits are also stereotypes of Americans as a whole. Plus, cowboy fashion and culture ''is'' still idealized in certain parts of America, particularly in rural areas (especially in western states), and in CountryMusic.

See {{Eagleland}} when talking about personality. WearingAFlagOnYourHead is another stereotypical American fashion. When talking about hair/eye colors, see PhenotypeStereotype. Sexy cowboy and cowgirl costumes may be a part of ForeignFanservice.


[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* Fumio's grandfather in ''Manga/SaitamaChainsawShoujo'' was a Texan bounty-hunter who wears a cowboy hat and frilled buckskin vest.
* In ''Manga/MidoriDays'', when Lucy's friend Daniel shows up to try and bring her back to America, he's dressed in...well, typical cowboy attire.
* [[http://keroro.wikia.com/wiki/Melody_Honey Melody Honey]], a reoccuring character in both ''Manga/ArcadeGamerFubuki'' and ''Manga/SgtFrog'', is [[ForeignFanservice a busty blonde model/pop idol/pro gamer]] who usually dresses in a skimpy cow-girl outfit.
* Jack King and the Texas Mack from ''Manga/GetterRobo''. Also his tribute in ''Anime/{{Gekiganger 3}}'', Cowboy Johnny and the Texas Robo.
* Cathy in ''Anime/RahXephon''.
* Reina Gorn in ''Manga/TheKurosagiCorpseDeliveryService'' is a HotScientist from the United States who is almost always seen wearing a cowboy hat.
* Terryman and Terry the Kid from ''Manga/{{Kinnikuman}}'' and ''Anime/UltimateMuscle''. They're also from Texas, and specialize in appropriately-flavored moves, like the Calf Branding.
** Terryman himself is based on legendary professional wrestler (and Texan) [[http://www.prowrestlingmidatlantic.com/terry_funk_op_471x6001.jpg Terry Funk,]] who did actually dress in a cowboy hat and a poncho for years, making this a JustifiedTrope in his case.
** Averted with Specialman (a gridiron football player) and Pentagon (a masked luchadore, but one with eagle wings).
* In ''Anime/MobileFighterGGundam'', America's Gundam Maxter is a [[NinjaPirateZombieRobot Boxer Surfer Football Player Cowboy]]. In the reimagined ''Choukyuu! G Gundam'' manga, its MidSeasonUpgrade Max Revolver ditches all those motifs except for the Cowboy one.
* Jackie Gudelhian from ''Anime/FutureGPXCyberFormula''. He wears a cowboy hat, likes rodeo riding and he's from Kentucky. He is even nicknamed the "High-tech Cowboy''.
* A character from ''Anime/DigimonTamers'' who shows up only briefly via video link is a computer programmer and friend of the 'Monster Makers' who originally coded the Digimon is [[PhenotypeStereotype blond]] and wears a stetson. The dub even adds a [[UsefulNotes/AmericanAccents Texan drawl]] to him.
* Averted with America in ''WebComic/AxisPowersHetalia''. The one time he does dress up as a cowboy, it's justified as other characters dress up in national costumes as well.
* The American Pretty Cure in ''Anime/HappinessChargePrettyCure'' are cowgirls (except the one who is a Native American).
* UsefulNotes/SegaGenesis from the ''Characters/SegaHardGirls'' franchise provides the trope image. As the Sega Mega Drive was released in the U.S. as the [[MarketBasedTitle Sega Genesis]][[note]]since "Mega Drive" was already copyrighted in the U.S. from someone making hard disk drives,[[/note]] and both consoles are represented by separate characters in the series, "Genny" (pronounced "Jennie") is a transfer student who comes to Japan after having studied in the U.S. Being the American console, [[SarcasmMode naturally]] she wears cowboy attire from head-to-toe along with a bandana halter top with the design of the American flag on it, with shades of black from the console she's based off of. She also has a loud, rude but charismatic personality, based on the console's aggressive marketing campaign in the U.S.
* Usually averted in ''Manga/DetectiveConan''. There are several types of Americans in that series, ranging from blondes to black-haired American or dark-skinned or black people. However, there was one time where Conan distinguishes the Brittish James Black from a similar looking Texas-native American (portrayed with a cowboy hat) through their different accents. Said American had a strong Southern accent.
* Averted in ''Manga/MagicKnightRayearth''. Autozam represents the United States of America. Yet none of the characters from Autozam are cowboys. Some do wear green berets. And their leader is styled to resemble a bald eagle.
* Averted in ''Manga/BlueExorcist''. Lightning (a Texan no less!) is the first explicitly American character to appear, but he doesn't look or act like a cowboy. He does sometimes wear a poncho, but thats about it.

* ''Franchise/{{Tintin}} in America'' had many Americans dressed as either Chicago mobsters in the city or cowboys in the country. Somewhat justified, as the cowboy era was not long dead.
* In ''ComicBook/{{Camelot 3000}}'', the American president dresses like a cowboy and packs a pair of six-shooters - an obvious reference to UsefulNotes/RonaldReagan.
* In [[http://oneofakindantiques.com/product/2464/Arthur-Szyk-Caricatures-Set-Number-6-for-Esquire-1942 one]] of [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Szyk Arthur Szyk's]] Anti-Fascist propaganda posters, America is depicted as a Gary Cooper-ish cowboy about to be stabbed in the back by a YellowPeril UsefulNotes/ImperialJapan, distracting him with an olive branch as he does so.

[[folder: Fan Works]]
* Despite the name and theme, the ''Videogam/KantaiCollection'' fanfic ''Fanfic/PacificWorldWarIIUsNavyShipgirls'' has only one character playing this straight: [[CaptainObvious Houston]].
* Discussed and subverted in ''FanFic/PowerRangersGPX'' with the American lead, who's a northern, Midwestern city-slicker that's never been on a farm in his life, lamenting the stereotype.


* ''Film/CasinoRoyale1967'' depicts the American army as composed of cowboys and Indians.
* ''WesternAnimation/FlushedAway'' features an obnoxious American tourist with a cowboy hat and Texas drawl.
* [[LampshadeHanging Lampshaded]] in ''Film/TheHuntForRedOctober''.
-->(Ramius notes Mancuso's sidearm and comments in Russian to Borodin that Mancuso is a "buckaroo". Ryan laughs)
-->'''Capt. Bart Mancuso:''' What's so funny?
-->'''Jack Ryan:''' Ah, the Captain seems to think you're some kind of...cowboy.
* In the Mexican film ''Film/SantaClaus1959'' (the one riffed by ''Series/MysteryScienceTheater3000''), the children from the USA are wearing cowboy outfits.
* ''Film/AustinPowersInternationalManOfMystery''. When Dr. Evil calls up the United Nations Secret Meeting Room to give his ultimatum, many of the occupants are dressed in costumes indicating their native countries (two Japanese are dressed as a geisha and a sumo wrestler, a British representative is wearing a Beefeater costume, a Spaniard is dressed as a matador, etc.). One of the characters (presumably an American) is dressed as a cowboy.
* One old Creator/JackieChan film featured him traveling to America and fighting a bunch of hairy, obese, slovenly cowboys who rolled around in mud. Knowing how this trope usually connects with reality, it was probably supposed to be set in Chicago or uptown Manhattan.
* The German BigBad of the first ''Film/DieHard'' film mocks John [=McClane=] as being a "cowboy" several times thoughout the movie, hence [=McClane=]'s "Yippie ki yay, motherfucker" CatchPhrase.
* In the movie adaption of ''Film/TheGoldenCompass,'' [[TokenAmerican Lee Scoresby]] wears a cowboy hat to compliment his Texan drawl. The only difference being that he's not actually American - Texas is a separate sovereign nation in this universe.
* The American characters in ''Film/TheMummy1999'' (save for main character Rick O'Connell) are all very cowboy-esque, wearing cowboy hats and being very fond of shooting guns.
** They also rode horses instead of camels.
* In the early Russian Film ''The Extraordinary Adventures of Mr. West in the Land of the Bolsheviks,'' the titular American capitalist is (naturally) accompanied on his trip to Russia by his faithful manservant, Cowboy Jeddy. Jeddy's duties seem to consist mostly of trick shooting.
* Major Kong of ''Film/DrStrangelove'', who wears a cowboy hat on duty, speaks with a Texan accent, and, of course, [[RidingTheBomb rides the bomb]]. [[TruthInTelevision Also, his actor, Slim Pickens.]]
* In ''Film/AnAmericanWerewolfInLondon'', the ominous British townsfolk in the Slaughtered Lamb pub make lots of cowboy jokes when they find themselves joined by a pair of American tourists.
* When [[NiceJobBreakingItHero the American astronauts destroy the Russian MIR station]] in ''Film/{{Armageddon}}'', [[RussianGuySuffersMost the Russian cosmonaut complains]] that [[DontTouchItYouIdiot he told them not to touch anything]], "but you're bunch of cowboys!"
* In ''Film/TheManFromUNCLE'', set in the 1960s, American protagonist Napoleon Solo calls Ilya Kuryakin "[[DirtyCommies the Red Peril]]". Ilya responds by calling Napoleon "cowboy".
* The [[Film/WillyWonkaAndTheChocolateFactory 1971 film adaptation]] of ''Literature/CharlieAndTheChocolateFactory'' depicted Mike [[PunnyName Teavee]], who's obsessed with watching violent westerns on television, as a loudmouthed American kid who dresses like a cowboy.
* In ''Film/KingsmanTheGoldenCircle'', the Statesmen are the American equivalent of Kingsmen and are all cowboys named after liquor, favor revolvers and even use technologically-enhanced lassos as weapons.

* ConversationalTroping between Literature/TommyAndTuppence in Creator/AgathaChristie's ''Partners In Crime'', where Tuppence is describing her fantasy of meeting a dashing romantic American man who has lived in the wilds and can rope wild steer, and Tommy sarcastically asks if he's also wearing chaps and a ten-gallon hat.
* In ''Literature/{{Dracula}}'' the one American character, Quincey Morris, is a cowboy. In one moment, Morris leaves a meeting with other heroes where they're trying to figure out how to cope with vampires; a few seconds later, bullets come flying through the window.
--> '''Quincey:''' I'm sorry, I thought I saw a bat out there.
* Played with and ultimately subverted in the case of Robert Tendyke in the German horror-fantasy-occasionally-SF series ''Literature/ProfessorZamorra''. The man ''owns'' a US-based {{megacorp}} (one that's usually depicted as at least reasonably ethical at that), is fond of dressing like a cowboy to the point of cliche, [[RichIdiotWithNoDayJob still has more than enough time to spare]] to play quasi-professional 'adventurer' even when he's ''not'' already involved in the latest case of the title character...and eventually turns out to have been born some four centuries ago as the long-estranged son of the demon Asmodis and an unfortunate Roma woman of very European extraction. The "cowboy" act is just a deliberate part of his modern-day identity.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* In an episode of ''Series/YoungIndianaJones Chronicles'', where young Indy is imprisoned in a maximum security German P.O.W. prison during UsefulNotes/WorldWarI, he is approched by two Russian prisoners who ask him if he is a cowboy since "All Americans are cowboys", when Indy asks them to clarify, they ask him if he knows how to use the lasso which Indy replies he does, prompting an overjoyed "A COWBOY!" reaction in them. Because, it turned out that they had been crafting a rope from all the strings of the mail envelopes for the purpose of escaping.
* The first ''Series/DoctorWho'' with a US setting was "The Gunfighters", which saw the First Doctor, Steven and Dodo mixing it up with Wyatt Earp and Johnny Ringo.
* Sky is under this impression in ''Series/TheSarahJaneAdventures''. Justified in that she is [[YoungerThanTheyLook younger than she looks]] and has been watching ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory''.
* ''Series/DadsArmy''. Walmington-on-Sea is hosting the first US troops on British soil, so Captain Mainwaring asks Sgt Wilson how he should greet them. Wilson suggests, "Howdy partner, put it there" while offering to shake hands. Mainwaring scoffs at this, saying [[YouWatchTooMuchX he's been watching too many cowboy movies]]. This becomes the inevitable BrickJoke when the American captain enters and holds out his hand to Mainwaring. "Howdy partner, put it there!"
* ''Series/NinjaSentaiKakuranger'' featured Jiraiya, the Japanese-American Black Ranger. When not transformed, he wore a cowboy outfit, dual [[RevolversAreJustBetter six-shooters]] and all.
* ''Series/ShurikenSentaiNinninger'' ramps it up further with Kinji Takigawa aka [=StarNinger=], who not only wears a cowboy outfit when unmorphed but his ''Ranger form'' has a built-in cowboy hat and poncho ''and'' his mecha is modeled on a bison.
* In ''Series/PennyDreadful'', the lone American main character is introduced as a [[TheGunslinger professional sharpshooter]] at a Wild West show in Victorian England.
* In ''Series/TheLeague'', Taco landed a role on an Algerian soap opera called ''Sands of Passion'' as Buck, an American pastiche and self-described “rapper-slash-cowboy-slash-cautionary tale” dressed like a cowboy and whose catchphrase is “Bang bang, what’s the hang?”
* In ''Series/TrueBlood'', Japanese businessman Gus has his US office in Dallas. In an attempt to "fit in", he dresses like a cowboy businessman and speaks in a ridiculously fake Texan accent. The other characters would often look at him in such a way that he was trying way too hard.

* The late Mexican composer of songs for children, Francisco Gabilondo Soler ''Cri-Cri'', in his song [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Qe80tTI1uo "El Ratón Vaquero"]] (The Cowboy Mouse), which also has GratuitousEnglish in its lyrics.
** Not to mention the song was a giant TakeThat against Walt Disney, since Disney tried to destroy Soler's reputation because Soler refused to sell the rights of his songs to him.
* ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZJXWkWeS2k My Name is Potato]]'' from Rita Pavone.
-->"Sure! I'm an AMERICAN potato!"
* The name of the Finnish novelty band Music/LeningradCowboys refers to the fact that they pretend to be Russian and play American rock and roll.

* In ''Pinball/{{Diner}},'' the only American customer among the multinational group is Buck the Texan.

* Prevalent enough in Germany back when ''Theatre/TheRiseAndFallOfTheCityOfMahagonny'' was first produced that a production note specifically insisted "Wildwest- und Cowboy-Romantik" was to be averted.
* Michael Flatley's ''Feet of Flames'' has a few cowboys to represent America's involvement is WWII.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* The American VideoGame/{{Bomberman}} in ''Super Bomberman 3'' is dressed like a cowboy.
* The primary love interest, and thus the most promoted character, in ''VideoGame/SakuraWars V: [[VideoGame/SakuraWarsSoLongMyLove So Long, My Love]]'' is Gemini Sunrise - Texan samurai cowgirl. That said, the game takes place in New York City, with the other American characters fitting much more into the category of "city-folk".
* {{Implied}} in ''VideoGame/ShirenTheWanderer'', with one NPC named "Foreign Vagabond" who wears a combination of cowboy gear and BraidsBeadsAndBuckskins.
* Tina from ''VideoGame/DeadOrAlive'' had a [[SexyWhateverOutfit sexed-up cowgirl outfit]] in the first game, and her dad Bass has a full cowboy getup as his default costume in the second. They're both American, in case you couldn't tell.
* In ''VideoGame/StreetFighterIV'', Ken, an "America the Beautiful"-style {{Eagleland}}er,[[labelnote:*]][[ButNotTooForeign well, half-Eaglelander]][[/labelnote]] wears cowboy gear as one of his alternate costumes. Even though he's probably from California.
* ''VideoGame/PokemonBlackAndWhite'': As Unova is based off America, male Pokémon Rangers are this. Clay, however, is a subversion and a {{Fauxreigner}}.
* ''[[VideoGame/PokemonRubyAndSapphire Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire]]'' play this straight; Aarune is dressed and speaks like a stereotypical cowboy despite hailing from the equivalent of the New York/New Jersey area.
* A recurring theme in the ''VideoGame/CommandAndConquerRedAlertSeries'', especially as later games began undercutting AmericaSavesTheDay. Exceptionally Texan General Coville from [=RA2=] kicked it off, but it became all too apparent in [=RA3=] (listen especially to the Century Bomber...). Two of the Allied combat tracks are actually ''called'' "American Cowboys" and "How The West Was Won".
* Johnny from ''VideoGame/GuiltyGear''. American? Check. Massive cowboy hat? Check. IaijutsuPractitioner? Hmm, ''that's'' new.
* A rare western example with [=McCree=] from Creator/BlizzardEntertainment's ''VideoGame/{{Overwatch}}''. He's one of two [[spoiler:actually, three]] American characters in a game starring a MultinationalTeam. He also looks and acts like a cowboy, complete with the iconic hat and a six shooter. He even says "It's high noon" when activating his [[ImprobableAimingSkills ultimate]]. Keep in mind that this game takes place in the ''future''.
* In ''VideoGame/AlphaProtocol'', this is referenced. Hong Shi mentions that he doesn't want to banter with an "American cowboy," and one of Grigori's complaints about American agents is that when they're not [[ConsummateProfessional too uptight]], they're "[[CowboyCop too much cowboy]]!"

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Bounced around in ''WesternAnimation/DangerMouse''. In one episode set in America, the only American DM meets is a cowboy. In another set in New York, there's no Wild West theme or cowboys at all (though there ''is'' a Film/KingKong ShoutOut).
* Clay from ''WesternAnimation/XiaolinShowdown''. Probably justified in that he came from a cattle ranch in [[EverythingIsBigInTexas Texas]].
* One episode of ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill'' had Hank forced to act like a stereotypical cowboy, including wearing cowboy boots, hat and driving a Cadillac El Dorado convertible, in an effort to appeal to a potential customer who believed that this was the way all Texans behaved. Eventually Hank gets fed up and tells the customer that if all he cares about is "cowboy bullshit" he can go with [[TheRival Thaterton]], but if he wants the job done right to stick with Strickland. The customer goes with Thaterton.
* Hank from ''WesternAnimation/ThomasTheTankEngine'', due to him being built in the United States instead of England like all of the other locomotives, actually speaks in a Texas accent. The only other locomotive that is not British is Hiro, the Japanese locomotive.
* Roswell from ''WesternAnimation/GeneratorRex'' has a cowboy hat and talks like a cowboy.
* One TV Funhouse animated segment from ''[[Series/SaturdayNightLive SNL]]'' dealt with a Chinese cartoon about heroically doped-up figure skaters. The American competitor is portrayed a gawky hick in full cowboy garb who can only say the word "Golly!"

[[folder:Real Life]]
* After 9/11, Saddam mentioned that the "American Cowboys were getting what they deserved."
* UsefulNotes/RonaldReagan and UsefulNotes/GeorgeWBush both maintained a cowboy image, having plenty of photo-ops in cowboy hats and acting like ranch guys. While neither one ever really worked with cattle, Reagan [[ButIPlayOneOnTV had acted in Westerns]], was quite fond of horseback riding, owned a horse named El-Alamein (likely after the UsefulNotes/WorldWarII battle), and later became something of an AscendedFanboy of the Western genre, buying and maintaining a working horse ranch where he cleared brush and chopped firewood himself. Bush, meanwhile, had been governor of Texas, the state most identified with cowboy imagery, and also owned a (non-working) ranch outside of Waco that, during his Presidency, almost acted as a second Camp David (it was nicknamed the "Western White House").
* UsefulNotes/LyndonJohnson, the first Texan in the White House, had a cowboy image.
* UsefulNotes/TheodoreRoosevelt was a cowboy, among other things. Mark Hanna, who'd argued against [[KickedUpstairs kicking Roosevelt into the Vice Presidency]] [[ReassignmentBackfire for exactly this reason]], had this to say.
--->'''Hanna''': I don't believe it! The goddamn cowboy's President!
* There's also a second layer to this trope: In America, every white person west of the Mississippi is stereotyped as a cowboy, unless they live on the West Coast. And we do literally mean "the Coast" -- inland California and eastern Oregon and Washington are as steeped in this trope as Arizona and Montana. The "Bakersfield sound" in CountryMusic is a prime example, having been created in the '60s by the descendants of Dust Bowl migrants to California's Central Valley. And even in the eastern US, you'll find some appropriation of cowboy iconography in the rural areas, especially in the South.
* The term ''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cowboy_diplomacy cowboy diplomacy]]'', sometimes used by critics of certain aspects of US foreign policy.
* A frequent complaint from American intellectuals and academics about their European (particularly French) opposite numbers is this bizarre identification of the cowboy as one of the most important things in the American psyche. One episode of ''Radio/ThisAmericanLife'' includes a bit where a [[http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/362/got-you-pegged?act=2 visitor to Germany goes into the phenomenon]] (and why it's stupid) in detail.
* The reason for this stereotype seems to be that, way back when, the majority of early American entertainment media that made it to other countries had a Western theme. Westerns were hugely popular in the U.S. at the time, but they weren't exactly SliceOfLife storytelling (most Americans back then didn't live on the frontier; otherwise it wouldn't have been a frontier), something many non-Americans at the time could not have known. This phenomenon predates motion pictures; Buffalo Bill's Wild West performances made [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buffalo_Bill#Buffalo_Bill.E2.80.99s_Wild_West_Tours_Europe many successful European tours]] and were perhaps many Europeans' first exposure to American culture and media (and Americans in general).
** Creator/KarlMay might have had something to do with this. [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karl_May]]
* The Frontier Thesis of Frederick Jackson Turner explained the uniqueness American Culture (democracy, individualism, optimism, comfort with violence) as being created by Westward Expansion. His idea being that the first few centuries of American Society were defined by a continual push against the wilderness, with frontier people having to rely on each other for day-to-day survival, but gaining wealth as individuals once the area was secure (which always came eventually). Turner's influence on the study of U.S. history was massive, and his popularity helped establish the cowyboy as representing the differences between the U.S. and other Anglosphere countries (or Europe).
* The only American character seen in the "It's a Small World" ride at the Ride/DisneyThemeParks (not counting a lone Eskimo) for some reason actually dresses up in stereotypical cowboy garb that is found only in the last part of the ride.
** Strangely enough, in a reversal of the trope, that is true in the ''American'' versions of the ride. "It's a Small World" in Disneyland Paris has an entire North America section with more than just cowboys (though it does have some).