[[quoteright:350:[[Film/TheDangerousLivesOfAltarBoys http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/altarboysmuscle_8817.png]]]]
A sub-trope of TransformationSequence where increase of muscle mass and definition is prominent. It can be used by a character transforming to his superpowered form, as well as a visual indicator of a SuperMode activating. In either case, those subjected to it are generally expected to possess SuperStrength.

The sequence usually consists of close-up shots of various muscle groups, most commonly the biceps, chest and back, growing and becoming more defined. As a result, expect ClothingDamage (with the exception of MagicPants). The transformation doesn't have to be limited to changes in musculature; for example, a villain can have SpikesOfVillainy popping up along the spine of his expanding back. Bulking up is also unexpectedly common in modern [[OurWerewolvesAreDifferent werewolf transformations]], despite the wolf being an animal generally regarded as lean rather than massive.

Depending on the character and the setting, a Growing Muscles Sequence can be {{voluntary| transformation}} or {{involuntary| transformation}}, range from painless to {{painful| transformation}} to a BodyHorror and its end result can run the gamut from having a HeroicBuild to being TheGrotesque.

Compare {{Shapeshifting}}, OneWingedAngel, and HulkingOut. See also ShapeshifterBaggage, TemporaryBulkChange.
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!!Examples

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[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Used all the time with various kinds of {{Super Mode}}s in ''Manga/DragonBall''.
* Kenshiro from ''[[Manga/FistoftheNorthStar Fist of the North Star]]''. Whenever he's about to use [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ebC8EVe1JQ Hokuto Shinken]], he [[WalkingShirtlessScene rips up his shirt]] and makes his jacket slide off his shoulders by sheer muscle expansion while his pants remain unharmed, which essentially makes him the Japanese {{Hulk}}.
* Done in ''Manga/HunterXHunter'' when [[OlderThanTheyLook apparently]] [[CuteBruiser 12-year old]] Biscuit Krueger goes from looking a cute schoolgirl to being 10' tall and incredibly ripped.
* Kid Muscle from ''Anime/KinnikumanNisei''.
* In ''{{Anime/Pokemon}}'', Sawk goes through this when he uses Bulk Up, a move that increases his attack and defense.
* Kotetsu from ''Anime/TigerAndBunny'', though it turns out it's a cosmetic feature of his original super suit.
* Younger Toguro from ''Manga/YuYuHakusho'' goes through this every time he unleashes a percentage of his full power, assuming ever more ridiculously bulked up forms during the course of the series. A less prominent example from the same series is Byakko, who grows as he absorbs the blows of his opponents, [[spoiler:which turns out to be his undoing.]]
* In ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'', Ggio Vega and Poww do this when they decide to unleash their full power. [[spoiler:Later on, fullbring forces a yakuza trapped inside a weaponised plushie to go through one of these.]]
* Aisha Clan-Clan in ''Anime/OutlawStar'' can transform into a more muscular version of herself under a full moon. (And then further into a non-anthropomorphic [[PantheraAwesome panther creature]].)
* Sandra Guts from ''LightNovel/DirtyPair'' does this to herself with her own formula called 'Hustle.'
* The [[ViralTransformation Eclipse Driver]] Marty of ''Manga/MagicalRecordLyricalNanohaForce'' has this as his viralizing ability. He could grow his muscles to increase his strength and toughness, to the point where he becomes [[ImmuneToBullets immune to physical attacks like bullets]]. [[spoiler:So Arnage switches weapons and pulls out a WaveMotionTuningFork]].
* {{Downplayed}} in ''Manga/{{Toriko}}''; when TheHero, Toriko, powers up for his signature move, the Kugi Punch, he pumps his right arm up and down, making its muscles bigger and bigger, while the rest of his body retains the same muscle mass.
* Ichiya from ''Manga/{{Fairy Tail}}'', whenever he uses his Power Perfume.
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[[folder:Comic Books]]
* [[Comicbook/IncredibleHulk The Hulk]] in all his incarnations. He is, after all, the TropeNamer of the related trope HulkingOut.
** Likewise, but to a lesser extent, [[SheHulk his cousin Jennifer]]. Whether or not she goes from mousy and unassuming to [[StatuesqueStunner tall]] and athletic to [[AmazonianBeauty flat-out ripped]] [[DependingOnTheArtist depends on who's drawing her]] (the same applies to the other She-Hulks, Lyra and Red She-Hulk). On special note is [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vQptInZJbXo her transformation in the 90s cartoon,]] mainly due to the level of muscularity she's shown with (she was slimmed down considerably in the second season) and... [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything well]]... [[PowerHigh the fact that it's]] [[UnusualEuphemism "lighting her fire".]]
* In TheNewUniverse, [[http://www.marvunapp.com/Appendix/lnders.htm David Landers]] of ''ComicBook/DP7'' goes through quite painful transformations when he grows muscles, which he has to sustain by being a BigEater.
* Patriot of ''YoungAvengers'', in the storyline where it's revealed he takes Mutant Growth Hormone. He injects himself with too much, and grows to the size of a truck.
* Some ''ComicBook/MarshalLaw'' superheroes "pump ions" to bulk up.
* This happens to Caitlin Fairchild in the first issue of ''{{Gen 13}}''. She goes from short and slender and mousy to [[StatuesqueStunner tall]], [[AmazonianBeauty ripped]] and [[BreastExpansion stacked]] once her powers activate.
* In his first appearance, ''{{Nightwing}}'' villain Blockbuster has one of these, turning him into a giant, deformed monster. Unlike most examples, the effect is permanent.
* Notably averted by ComicBook/{{Bane}} in his comic book appearances: Venom makes him veiny, but he stays pretty much the same size. Most adaptations play the trope straight, though, and he's bulked up considerably in the {{New 52}}.
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[[folder:Film]]
* Bane's initial transformation in ''Film/BatmanAndRobin''.
* Tim turning into The Muscle in the {{Imagine Spot}}s of ''Film/TheDangerousLivesOfAltarBoys''.
* Dr. Jeckyl in ''Film/TheLeagueOfExtraordinaryGentlemen'' does this when he changes into Hyde while underwater inside the Nautilus.
* Happens to [[spoiler:''[[TheScrappy Scrappy Doo]]'']] in the first ''Film/ScoobyDoo'' movie, and to Shaggy in the second, although the causes and intentions for each are different.
* The Nerdlucks turning into the Monstars in ''Film/SpaceJam''. Bugs Bunny, being a Looney Toon, is not above faking one to convince his teammates that [[MagicFeather "Michael's Secret Stuff"]] works.
* Invoked when Clown transforms into his demonic true form, the Violator, in the ''Film/{{Spawn}}'' film. It's an odd variant because Clown is a short FatBastard human and Clown is a much taller hunchbacked LeanAndMean demon.
* Done quite naturally in the film ''Film/TheThreeStooges Meet Hercules'', as the nerdy but affable MadScientist labors in a rowing crew aboard a galleon. The strain of pumping the oars causes him to bulk up significantly, with many [[FanService shots of his bulging biceps]], until he is a match for the mythological strongman himself.
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[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/MahouSentaiMagiranger'' and by extension ''Series/PowerRangersMysticForce'': one of the Green Ranger's spells.
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer''. Lampshaded but averted when the Nerd Trio get their hands on a [[CompensatingForSomething couple of magic orbs]].
-->'''Andrew:''' [You] don't look any different. I thought they were supposed to make us all huge and veiny.
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[[folder:Video Games]]
* ''AlteredBeast'' has your character undergo two such transformations for the first two {{Power Up}}s he collects in a stage. His transformation into a beast once they pick up the third also has elements of this.
* ''VideoGame/BatmanArkhamAsylum'' has this happen to a depowered Bane and some of Joker's goons when they get injected with [[PsychoSerum "Titan"]], a derivative of the [[SuperSerum Venom]] normally used by Bane. [[spoiler:It almost happens to Franchise/{{Batman}} when he [[TakingTheBullet takes the bullet]] for Commissioner Gordon, but he's able to resist the transformation until he takes an [[MagicAntidote antidote]]. SelfDemonstrating/TheJoker, [[VoluntaryTransformation on the]] [[OneWingedAngel other hand...]]]]
* Rick undergoes a pretty gruesome one in the opening cutscene of the updated ''{{Splatterhouse}}''.
-->'''Terror Mask:''' Aw, quit whining. Did I ''say'' it was gonna be fun?
* ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorneyDualDestinies'': The DLC case includes a scene like this when you start closing in on the culprit. Apparently, [[spoiler:fish-barrel water]] buffs you up like nothing else.
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[[folder:Webcomics]]
* Ace Dick's transformation into Fiesta Ace Dick in ''Webcomic/ProblemSleuth''.
* Doc Scratch's corpse's transformation into Lord English in ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}''
* Sweet Bro [[http://www.mspaintadventures.com/sweetbroandhellajeff/comoc.php?cid=041.jpg "GETS RIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIPPPPPPPED"]] in one strip of ''Webcomic/SweetBroAndHellaJeff''.
-->'''Hella Jeff''': fucking incredible
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[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Done in a number of [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAM_tLYl6_o werewolf]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGMmxzZarBw transformations]] in animation. Apparently the "were" in "werewolf" is the Anglo-Saxon for "bodybuilder".
* Bane in ''WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries'' and ''WesternAnimation/TheBatman''.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Ben 10}}'': Vilgax in the early seasons had Cybernetic SpikesOfVillainy that did this.
* Raimundo from ''WesternAnimation/XiaolinShowdown'' had this issue when the Shen Gong Wu kept magnetically pulling towards him, making him increasingly more powerful to the point he was virtually invincible, with Wuya attempting to use him as a vessel for her to defeat the monks.
* One of the effects of the [[SuperSerum Super Soldier Serum]] that created CaptainAmerica.
* ''WesternAnimation/HeManAndTheMastersOfTheUniverse1983'': Prince Adam's transformation to He-Man usually ''doesn't'' involve this, despite the former being an ordinary Eternian and the latter "the most powerful man in the universe". In the first series, this was because [[ClarkKenting He-Man is pretty much Prince Adam with a tan and less clothes on]]. In [[WesternAnimation/HeManAndTheMastersOfTheUniverse2002 the 2002 series]] a sequence is used for a few episodes in the second season, until He-Man gets his armour.
* ''JusticeLeague Unlimited'' in the episode "The Patriot Act" after a mad general steals super soldier serum and injects himself.
* A couple of Timmy's wishes in ''WesternAnimation/TheFairlyOddParents'' resulted in this.
* Billy turning back into Ganthar in ''WesternAnimation/MartinMystery''.
* [[OnceAnEpisode In each episode]] of ''TheMiniavengers'', a kid will pass through a momentary but incredibly exaggerated sequence before getting their superpower, temporarily ending up dozens of times the size of the earth.
* {{Popeye}}, every time he eats his spinach. The change is brief and usually located in the (already abnormally muscular) forearms, sometimes with a superimposed image of a battleship, a cannon, a high-powered turbine or similar imagery.
* Munya from ''TheSecretSaturdays''.
* ''TheSimpsons'': Bart has an ImagineSpot where he's a professional human guinea pig. He takes one sip of Nature's Goodness soda and turns into a deformed monster.
* ''SuperDuperSumos'' is a rare case where the characters are already bulky; what they are gaining in the transformation is definition.
** The Sumo wrestlers are already big and bulky. The "Sumo Size" transformation is always extra muscle definition.
* The ''WesternAnimation/TotallySpies'' episode "The Incredible Bulk" featured a plot involving power bars that would cause anyone who ate them to go through a series of such transformations, until they would finally explode.
* Prime and Hardcase from ''Ultraforce''. For the former it's a standard transformation sequence, for the latter a permanent change.
* Happens to Jade from ''WesternAnimation/JackieChanAdventures'' in the episode "The Amazing T-Troop" when she uses the ox talisman. Interestingly, while the ox talisman does grant the user the power of super strength, this is the only occurrence where this trope is applied.
* A [[StockFootage sequence]] depicting this happening is often played when {{Kaeloo}} transforms into [[HulkingOut Bad Kaeloo]]. [[MaleGaze The most attention is paid to her buttocks]].
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