[[quoteright:318:[[ComicBook/{{Preacher}} http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/armwrestle_6405.jpg]]]]

->''"...I'm sorry, have you two already started?"''
-->-- '''Superman''' (arm-wrestling the gods Samson and Atlas [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8pNRyIlJ_g at the same time]]), ''WesternAnimation/AllStarSuperman''

Somehow, in some [[JustForPun over the top]] fashion, a situation has arisen that can only be solved by one character arm wrestling another. This will almost always result in a character who appears scrawny having to arm wrestle a man far larger than they are.

This ''never'' favors the big man, since almost as often, the character only ''appears'' scrawny, and is in fact a not so harmless CuteBruiser, or otherwise ends up being more powerful than they look. Expect the GenreSavvy to take full advantage of this misconception to make money, get revenge, or just show off.



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Kenshiro got into one of these in ''Manga/FistOfTheNorthStar''. It was made even more deadly by having buzzsaws near the bottom of the table that would cut off the arm of the loser. Ken spared the {{Mook}} he was armwrestling from having his arm cut off... by breaking his arm instead.
* Gon, Killua, and Leorio actually make money doing this in ''Manga/HunterXHunter'', having Gon arm wrestle passerby and win. Also, the strongest person he arm-wrestled and forced him to use Nen to win: a {{Meganekko}}. The only reason he won was because she used her right hand, and she's left-handed. Which makes this an example of IAmNotLeftHanded, while being an inversion at the same time.
* ''Manga/LittleHouseWithAnOrangeRoof'' has Natsumi in this situation in chapter 38. On a whim, she plays an arm wrestling game and beats it even when her youngest daughter sets it to the highest level. It's later revealed the machine was broken, but Natsumi doesn't know that when she has to arm wrestle a construction worker to get her house worked on. The intervention of the kids [[CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming warms the hearts]] of the construction workers and the event is called off.
* Episode 7 of ''The Anime/IrresponsibleCaptainTylor'' has [[BridgeBunnies Bridge Bunny]] Yuriko facing off with big Marine Lt. Andressen to decide whether or not they clean up the ''Soyokaze.'' Yuriko holds out well, but is on the verge of losing until Captain Tylor cheers for Andressen. This gets Yuriko mad and, to everyone's shock, immediately pins down Andressen's arm.
* Done in ''Manga/PrettyFace'' where the [[DudeLooksLikeALady deceptively waifish-looking]] main character Rando does astonishingly well in such a contest.
* ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'':
** Double subverted when Akane is arm wrestling several arm-wrestling machines. She's winning, but then loses to the Sumo wrestler (the strongest machine) -- [[spoiler:turns out Shampoo was hiding inside]].
** Played straight in the Super Soba storyline, where Ranma tries to debunk Akane's claims of SuperStrength with an arm wrestling match... and then another... and so on [[ImpactSilhouette until there are several Ranma-shaped holes in the floor]].
* Double subverted in ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist''. In Rush Valley, a big guy is challenging people to an [[ArtificialLimbs automail]] arm wrestling contest. He keeps winning until Ed moves to challenge him. [[spoiler:Turns out he was cheating to win using Alchemy, but Al then cheats right back to win anyway.]] Also occurs in [[Anime/FullmetalAlchemist the 2003 anime version]].
* ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima'' has an [[MundaneMadeAwesome epic]] arm-wrestling match between Ku Fei and Negi. The "one-sided" aspect is a big of a ZigZaggingTrope, as in terms of pure physical strength they're about equal, with Ku apparently having a slight advantage due to her [[KiAttacks Ki]]. Then Negi pulls out the BlackMagic. Ku didn't have much of a chance after that.
* Rather hilarious example from ''Manga/PandoraHearts'': Gil's NiceHat is riding on the outcome of an arm-wrestling battle between a big, burly tough guy and Alice. Alice is basically an EldritchAbomination [[SealedEvilInATeddyBear in the form of]] [[CuteBruiser a teenage girl]], and Gil, who controls her PowerLimiter, ''[[SeriousBusiness really]]'' wants his hat back. [[CrowningMusicOfAwesome Her power-up music]] [[MundaneMadeAwesome even starts playing.]] In the manga Alice even breaks the guy's arm.
* The title character of ''Manga/GreatTeacherOnizuka'' once beat ''99 guys'' in an arm wrestling contest, including a giant, a nuclear mutant, [[VideoGame/{{Tekken}} Heihachi Mishimi]] and [[Franchise/FridayThe13th Jason Voorhees.]]
* When one of the boys in ''Manga/HanamaruKindergarten'' declares his love for athletic teacher Kusano, she tries everything she can to dissuade the kid, finally settling on an arm wrestling match... only for Anzu to distract her at the critical moment by talking about wedding ceremonies.
* In ''Manga/PrisonSchool'', in order to buy time for a scheme, the boys all challenge Meiko to an arm-wrestling competition. None of them last a second with her save for Andre, and he lasted as long as he did because she found herself distracted by a single strand of chest hair.
* Mai and Yuuko square off in ''Manga/{{Nichijou}}'', with the loser having to buy the winner a bottle of juice. At the end of the subsequent arm-slamming montage, [[spoiler:Mai has won 23 juices off of Yuuko plus "that thing from the station" poor Yuuko kept thinking she could win if she gave it one more shot.]]
* Chapter 40 of ''Manga/MissKobayashisDragonMaid'' features several examples during an arm wrestling tournament. Takiya gets his wrist snapped like a twig by Ilulu, Kanna is unable to even budge Lucoa's arm despite using both hands, and the only reason Tohru didn't lose to Lucoa in the finals is because she bribed Shouta to distract her.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* While recounting his past in one part of ''ComicBook/{{Preacher}}'', [[OurVampiresAreDifferent resident vampire Cassidy]] recalls using this trope soon after traveling to the US. No one ever suspects that the gawky looking kid has SuperStrength.
* In ''ComicBook/AllStarSuperman'', Superman faces [[Myth/GreekMythology Atlas]] and [[Literature/TheBible Samson]] simultaneously, and breaks their arms.
* In #2 of the current ComicBook/RedSonja series, Sonja has time travelled to present-day New York. She is challenged to an arm wrestle by a meat head in a Harlem bar, who obviously thinks he'll BestHerToBedHer. Instead, Sonja immediately shoves his arm down. He complains he wasn't ready so she beats him again just as quickly, this time nearly breaking his wrist. She's then shown easily beating an even bigger guy, with this match going viral on social media.
* In one issue of ''JSA'', Atom Smasher and Black Adam arm wrestle. Atom Smasher is over 7 feet tall with a body of solid muscle, and can grow even larger and stronger. Meanwhile, [[Wrestling/DwayneJohnson The Rock]] was once to play Black Adam in a movie -- these are huge guys. They get locked in the starting position, with Atom Smasher giving it all he's got and, he assumes, Black Adam doing much the same. They carry on a conversation for a while, until Adam asks "This game, when does it start?"
* One ''ComicBook/LuckyLuke'' story has Calamity Jan wrestle the villain's goon, with the saloon's residents all betting on him. When the goon tells the villain to bet his next salary, Jane asks if all bets are done, and instantly smashes his arm back almost from the brink. Oh, and this version had lit candles underneath each person's arms.
* In ''ComicBook/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagicIDW'', Princess Celestia set up a hoof-wrestling booth, easily beating everypony who challenged her since she is a PhysicalGod. Even [[CharlesAtlasSuperpower Big Macintosh]] straining with all his might only made her smirk. Granted, she had to put a bandage on her arm afterward, implying he was strong enough to injure her.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* ''Film/SupermanII''. Ursa challenges a human male to an arm-wrestling contest. She appears to be totally outmatched (she weighs a hundred pounds soaking wet), but since she's a Kryptonian (and thus has strength comparable to Big Blue himself), she easily beats him, injuring him in the process.
* Probably the most disturbing example in film history is the bar scene in ''Film/TheFly1986'', in which a newly superpowered Jeff Goldblum snaps a mans wrist and rips the bone out. With loud cracking sounds and NO GoryDiscretionShot.
* ''Film/CoolRunnings'' has Yul Brenner (no, not [[Creator/YulBrynner that one]]) do arm wrestling matches to raise money for the bobsled team. The strong men fail, but the last contestant, a large woman, succeeds.
* In ''Film/TimeBandits'', a member of RobinHood's merry men tears the arm off the man he's arm-wrestling and throws it into a pile of other arms.
* ''Film/RevengeOfTheNerds'' during the intergender arm wrestling contest. The male nerds get squashed by the cheerleaders they all had to face except for Booger, who manages to fake out the girl he had to face and get a win.
* Subverted in ''Two Fathers Justice''. The weaker guy uses the opportunity to sucker punch his opponent instead of wrestling him.

* In the Literature/SixteenThirtyTwo-universe short story "Diving Belle", Per is nervously watching his brother play the deceptively-scrawny role when the protagonist, Ginny Cochran, enters the taproom of the Silver Eel bar where the match is taking place.
* In the story "Medium Tough" by Craig Davidson, the main character Dr. Jasper "Jazz" Railsback is a surgeon. The left half of his body is withered and the right half is buff - he's split right down the middle as a consequence of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, which caused an in untero hormonal disorder. Using the right half of his body, he's a champion arm wrestler. With the left half, he's a pediatric surgeon.
* At a party in ''[[Literature/XWingSeries Solo Command]]'', two ''Mon Remonda'' crewmen decide to have a friendly game of arm-wrestling with [[TheBigGuy Chewbacca]]. Predictably, Chewie handily beats both of them -- at the same time.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* ''Series/MySecretIdentity:'' A macho man challenged Andrew Clemens to an arm wrestling match after Andrew got SuperStrength.
* In an episode of ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' a guest Klingon challenges Data to B'aht Qul (a Klingon challenge similar to arm wrestling). Data wins in 0.47 seconds, then calmly goes back to what he's doing.
* There's a funny series of examples in ''Series/TheMaryTylerMooreShow''. In an episode, an old man challenged Lou Grant to an arm wrestling contest. The old man defeated the bigger Lou. Then, the old man challenged Ted. Ted defeated the old man easily. Filled with confidence, Ted challenged Lou. [[spoiler: It turns out that Lou always let the old man wins to give him a drink. So, Lou literally caused Ted to go onto the floor.]]
* In ''Series/HerculesTheLegendaryJourneys'', the [[AmazonianBeauty super strong]] Atalanta challenges Herc to one of these. Herc was winning easily, until he spies her cleavage and [[DistractedByTheSexy is distracted enough]] that he loses.
* In ''Series/TheOddCouple'', "The Fat Farm", Felix gets Oscar into an arm-wrestling match to prove how much he's let himself go. Felix easily pins him.
* Katie of ''Series/PowerRangersTimeForce'', having been bioengineered with superstrength, does this once, against a Ranger in another team in one of the crossover episodes.
* ''Series/{{Bones}}'': ZigZagged. Mr. Vincent Nigel-Murray, wearing an upper body exoskeleton giving him the proportionate strength of a ''T. rex'', is unable to beat Hodgens in an arm-wrestling contest because the limitations of the ''T. rex''[='s=] skeletal structure makes it unable to complete the presumed CurbStompBattle. Hodgens wins.
* In ''Series/ICarly'', Sam could easily beat Freddie at arm-wrestling, even after he had buffed up so much his arms were twice as thick as hers.
* Happens in the failed pilot for ''The Greatest American Heroine'' (meant to be a replacement for ''Series/TheGreatestAmericanHero''). Although she doesn't inform her partner Bill Maxwell she's got the super-suit on beneath her outfit, at first leaving him to think she's challenging the burly guy without it and making him very nervous.
* In the episode 'Comedy Of Eros' of ''Series/XenaWarriorPrincess'', Xena and dastardly warlord Draco are shot by Eros' arrow, causing them to fall in love with one another. One scene shows most of their clothes lying on the ground but the camera draws back to show them having a friendly arm-wrestle. Xena beats the massively muscled Draco with ease.

* In the music video to ''Good Girls'', Elle King arm wrestles a ScaryBlackMan at least twice her size and not only beats him, she slams his arm against the table so hard he's thrown from his chair, starting a BarBrawl.

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* ''VisualNovel/LuckyDog1'' has this potentially happen between muscly Luchino and slender Gian in the spin-off ''Gian Carlo's Lucky Happy Life'', when the former drunkenly challenges the latter to a contest of arm wrestling at the very beginning of his route. In one of the two outcomes to this impromptu match, Gian is somehow able to beat Luchino despite the obvious strength disparity between them, which even he is shocked by. If he ends up losing instead though, his arm becomes seriously sore afterwards.

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* Happens in ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'' when Susan ([[GenderBender recently transformed into a man]]) challenges Nanase and [[http://www.egscomics.com/index.php?id=714 loses]].
* Happens twice in ''Webcomic/DeadWinter'', once with Lizzie dishing it out and once with her on the receiving end.
* [[http://danbooru.donmai.us/posts/894778 This]] ''VideoGame/{{Touhou}}'' fancomic has Cirno vs Utsuho, ice fairy vs nuclear-powered hell raven. Cirno wins, but not the way you'd expect...

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* The ''WesternAnimation/DextersLaboratory'' episode "Hamhocks and Arm-Locks" has Dexter's dad getting baited into arm-wrestling with a beefy trucker named Earl after Dad accidentally breaks the trucker's winning streak. Knowing the match is too one-sided, Dexter secretly fits his dad with a mechanical arm to enhance his strength. Once they start arm wrestling, the two seem evenly matched... until Dexter realizes he forgot to push a button on his remote control, at which point Earl is sent flying through a wall.
* In Disney's ''WesternAnimation/JohnHenry'' short, there is a montage of him arm wrestling progressively more men simultaneously and winning. When his much tinier wife challenges him, she wins, but only because she distracted him by kissing him.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{ThunderCats|1985}}'': Lion-O is searching for the missing history-holding holoprojector, but finds that a caveman has claimed it. He has to beat the caveman at arm-wrestling to get it back.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/DuckTales'' episode [[Recap/DuckTalesS1E56DuckmanOfAquatraz "Duckman of Aquatraz"]] where Scrooge gets put in prison, a dozen or more burly inmates challenge him to an arm-wrestling match. In a glorious display of his {{Badass Grandpa}}-ness, Scrooge effortlessly smashes their huge hands into the table, one by one, quipping "Next!" between rounds. While they all stand in shock and awe rubbing their wrists, one asks Scrooge how did he became so strong, to which the latter replies "By lifting moneybags!" This is when the prisoners start to respect Scrooge.
* In the ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyEquestriaGirlsFriendshipGames'' short ''All's Fair in Love and Friendship Games'' Sweetie Drops manages to effortlessly beat Bulk Biceps in an arm wrestling match. The usual turn around is present: Bulk Biceps has a MeaningfulName, while Sweetie Drops looks quite skinny by comparison.
* In WesternAnimation/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles2003, during their Christmas party [[TheBigGuy Raph]] and [[BadassNormal Casey]] try their luck against Silver Sentry, a CaptainErsatz of Superman. Despite straining with all their might, and even working together, they can't make him begin to put any effort, and when their arms hit the table the force sends them flipping through the air across the room. Then ''April'' steps up, and seemingly trounces him with the same result (he threw the match as a joke using his flight ability).