[[quoteright:350:[[Film/SherlockHolmes2009 http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/cloth_fu5.jpg]]]]

An occurrence where a character uses a piece of stray cloth as a weapon. The cloth used can vary from blankets to bags with towels getting special mention, as they're a convenient illustration of CantBatheWithoutAWeapon. The cloth can be used in a number of ways. In the most benign uses, the cloth can be used to capture or blind an enemy. More agile characters may even use the cloth to capture a weapon and disarm their opponent. More sinister characters can use the cloth as a makeshift garrote or even a hangman's noose. A type of fighting style that is not seen often, but does show up in some movies or TV shows.

Overlaps with either ImprovisedWeapon or ImprobableWeaponUser.

A SisterTrope to ClothingCombat


[[folder: Anime and Manga ]]

* One character in ''Manga/TheLawOfUeki'' fights with towels. Justified, as he has the power to turn towels into metal (and back again).
* Taken to extremes by Master Asia of ''[[Anime/MobileFighterGGundam G Gundam]]'' fame. Not only does he have a Gundam with a giant cloth (and a MidseasonUpgrade that uses one made out of magnetically contained plasma!) he also uses his sash belt to fight HumongousMecha with ''on foot''!
* ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'': Ryoga and his bandanas, Kodachi and her ribbon.
* In ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'', during his fight with Coyote Stark, Kyoraku throws his captain's coat over his head. [[spoiler: This isn't just to blind him. His powers allow him to weaponize various children's games, including increasing his attack power if his enemy is wearing a certain color. His white coat helps him score a critical hit, leading to Stark's death.]]
* ''LightNovel/BludgeoningAngelDokuroChan'': Zakuro Mitsukai uses a wet towel, named Eckelsax.
* In ''Manga/KenichiTheMightiestDisciple'', [[LadyOfWar Shigure]] uses her hair ribbon to defend herself when she is attacked in a hot spring bath.
* In ''Manga/{{Sekirei}}'', the Clothed Sekirei's fighting style is this.
* In ''LightNovel/ACertainMagicalIndex'', during his TraintopBattle with Freyja, Touma takes off his jacket and lets the train's speed blow it straight into Freyja's face, blinding her.
* In ''Manga/JojosBizarreAdventure'', Lisa Lisa has a scarf made from the silk of a particular type of scarab, which can conduct her [[KiManipulation Hamon]] energy; this later served as the inspiration for ''VideoGame/StreetFighterAlpha''[='s=] Rose. In one battle, Joseph unravels his own scarf (made from the same silk) and lays it on the ground in order to form a "web" which he uses against one of the [[OurVampiresAreDifferent Pillar Men]].

[[folder: Comic Books ]]

* In the Sonic 3D Blast adaptation of ''ComicBook/ArchieComicsSonicTheHedgehog'', Sonic pulls on Robotnik's cape after knocking him to the ground. Robotnik tells him that he made his cape out of a special material which wraps itself around Sonic. Sonic manages to break out of it by vibrating really fast.
* ComicBook/DoctorStrange sometimes distracts/detains attackers with his cape. Of course he's a magician and the cape is also known as the Cloak of Levitation, but even when he's just using it as a piece of cloth he can be an effective fighter.
* ComicBook/{{Batwoman}} sometimes uses her cape to snare enemies and toss them around.


[[folder: Films -- Animated ]]

* ''Disney/OliverAndCompany'': Georgette drops a blanket on top of Roscoe and Desoto, subduing them for a few seconds and allowing Dodger and the gang to infiltrate Sykes' hideout.
* Happens to Panchito Pistoles at the end of the title song of ''Disney/TheThreeCaballeros'' as a result of both DonaldDuck and [[Disney/SaludosAmigos Jose Carioca]] becoming annoyed of his singing.
* At the climax of ''Disney/TheHunchbackOfNotreDame'', Frollo throws his cape over Quasimodo, and uses it to try to throw him off the cathedral.


[[folder: Films -- Live-Action ]]

* Jason Bourne grabs a nearby hand towel in ''Film/TheBourneIdentity'' when an assassin throws him into a bathroom, and proceeds to put him in a [[ChokeHolds choke hold]] with it.
* In the ''Film/RichieRich'' film, Prof. Keenbean does this to Ferguson, using a towel with one side of it coated with his super sticky adhesive, in an attempt to save Richie and the others.
* In ''Film/{{Zombieland}}'', Columbus uses a shower curtain to keep a zombie from biting him.
* This has happened in nearly every Creator/JackieChan movie.
* In ''Film/{{Goldeneye}}'', James Bond beats a {{Mook}} by tying his arm with a towel and throwing him down the stairs. He then casually towels himself off.
* This is how Kristy joins the [[MemeticMutation Best fight scene of all time]] in ''Film/{{Undefeatable}}''.
* In ''Film/{{Elektra}}'', Elektra fights Kirigi in a room full of flying white sheets. The villain seems to be manipulating them somehow to distract Elektra and/or hide his movements. Though as described by Creator/RogerEbert, "we're expecting maybe an elegant Creator/ZhangYimou sequence, and it's more like they're fighting with the laundry."
* In ''Film/SherlockHolmes2009'', Holmes, during a pit-fighting match, grabs a handkerchief off the wall of the pit and flings it into his opponent's face as part of a planned attack sequence after his opponent [[SpitefulSpit spat at the back of his head]].
* In ''Film/ILoveYouBethCooper'', Rich fends off three musclebound {{Jerk Jock}}s with a wet towel. The jocks grab wet towels of their own and counterattack, but Rich ultimately forces them to retreat.
* In ''Film/{{Serenity}}'', Mal throws a curtain over The Operative's head and starts punching him while he is blinded, though The Operative quickly gets the upper hand.
* In one of the ''Once Upon A Time In China'' movies, the lead character has to fight [[NeverMessWithGranny an awesome old lady]]. [[LadyOfWar She's]] wearing a dress with sort of petticoats, and she uses this as an advantage via [[KickChick kicking him]] and using said petticoats so he wouldn't be able to see where the kicks come from.
* ''Film/DoctorStrange2016'' has a rather interesting example. The Cloak of Levitation is not just a cloak, but a fully sentient being capable of handling itself in a fight. It does this by wrapping itself around its enemy's head and slamming them into the ground.

[[folder: Literature ]]
* In one episode of ''Series/MartialLaw'', Sammo uses a gang member's do-rag to handle him and his three buddies.
* In ''Literature/TheDevilInIron'', Conan manages to stop his iron-bodied opponent by throwing a curtain on him. As noted, even if he's ludicrously strong he's still entangled by the whole damn cloth.
* In the ''Literature/CircleOfMagic'' series, Sandry's magic works through fiber, thread, or fabric. Thus, her usual approach to hostiles or criminals is to bind them in their own clothes.
* Near the end of the first ''Literature/ChroniclesOfAmber'', Corwin is exhausted after traveling from Amber to the Courts of Chaos -- the long way. One of the greatest knights of Chaos challenges him to a formal duel. Corwin unceremoniously pulls his cape over the guy's head and stabs him.
-->'''Lord of Chaos:''' Oh, basely done! I expected better of thee!
-->'''Corwin:''' This isn't the Olympic Games.


[[folder: Live Action TV ]]

* A season four episode of ''Series/BurnNotice'' showed Michael Weston using a towel in a fight against a prisoner. He used it to quickly wrap his opponent's hands together before proceeding to kick his ass.
* ''Series/{{Bibleman}}'': Biblegirl, in her first appearance, and not in uniform, used a piece of yellow cloth (which glowed) to fight Luxor Spawndroth, the villain of this particular episode.
* An episode of the ''Series/NinjaTurtlesTheNextMutation'' had Venus fight off a horde of [[{{Mooks}} dragons]] using a cape and a playground.


[[folder: Newspaper Comics ]]

* ''ComicStrip/{{Peanuts}}'': Linus occasionally uses his security blanket like a whip.
* ''ComicStrip/{{Garfield}}'' Garfield did this once, during an arc where he was pretending to be a sumo wrestler.


[[folder: Radio ]]

* Happens a few times in ''Franchise/TheHitchhikersGuideToTheGalaxy'' with towels. The notable example that springs to mind is when Ford is in freefall and manages to land on a giant talking bird. The bird is inclined to drop him, but Ford wraps his multipurpose towel around its head. The bird is now sightless, but Ford points out that he can still slowly fly down to the ground.


[[folder: Tabletop RPG ]]

* ''[[Literature/TheChroniclesOfAmber Amber]] Diceless Role-Playing''. Throwing a [[ClothingCombat cloak]] or rug over someone's head is a specific form of attack listed under Weapons in the Other Factors in Combat section.


[[folder: Videogames ]]

* Fa Zheng of ''Videogame/DynastyWarriors'' uses a piece of cloth as his weapon.
* Koshosho of ''Videogame/SamuraiWarriors'' uses a single long scarf as her weapon, which she can either use as a whip or even swing around on.
* Sanzang of ''Videogame/WarriorsOrochi'' slaps her enemies with oversized sleeves.
* Kyogoku Maria can attack and trap enemies with incredibly long lengths of fabric in ''Videogame/SengokuBasara''.
* ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyTactics'', had certain female classes fight with Cloths, still wrapped around the rods. Very potent, as they're among the few weapons that reach two squares.
* Auriel from ''VideoGame/DiabloIII'' has in possession of the holy sash Al'maiesh, which she can use to either slap enemies around or restrain them. She didn't get to use it in that game, but in ''VideoGame/HeroesOfTheStorm'' she gets to use it a lot more.


[[folder: Webcomics ]]

* Forgath of ''Webcomic/{{Goblins}}'' makes a habit of storing his mace in a cloth bag, even in dungeons. When an enemy attacked while Forgath was still trying to get the mace free, he first deflected the blow with the bag then wrapped the cloth around the weapon so he could control the blade.
* ''Webcomic/YetAnotherFantasyGamerComic'': Glon's wife Gaggia is able to fend off a colony of giant ants with her cape.


[[folder: Real Life ]]

* Rolled up (damp) towels.
** Rolled up, nothing! Wet towels, period, can '''sting'''!
*** When asked on ''Series/TheHollywoodSquares'' what the most common injury was among amateur baseball players,
--> '''Creator/GilbertGottfried:''' Getting whacked in the ass with a wet towel
--> '''audience laughter, beat'''
--> '''Creator/WhoopiGoldberg:''' Annnd they're ''off!''
* There are also records of a 16th / 17th century fighting style, normally used with a cape, where the fighter used a rapier in his primary hand and some form of durable cloth in his off hand. Though the cape was considered the primary version, there is evidence of everything up to and including large floppy hats being used as such. As would be obvious, the fighter would use this 'soft parry' item to entangle his opponant's weapon as a defense. Depending on the type of cloth, you could even do a BareHandedBladeBlock relatively safely.
* RealLife Martial Arts have some examples:
** Hapkido includes, among its traditional weapons, belts.
** Chinese Wu Shu styles often included the use of "weighted sleeves", overlong sleeves with weights in them that could be used as flails. According to legend, during the Boxer Rebellion, one set of nuns was spared because they raised their arms to pray and the attackers mistook the prayerbooks in their sleeves for this weapon.