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

->''...I'm sorry, have you two already started?''
-->Superman armwrestling 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.

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!!Examples:

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[[folder:Anime and 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 ''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.
* ''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 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 ''PrettyFace'' where the [[DudeLooksLikeALady deceptively waifish-looking]] main character Rando does astonishingly well in such a contest.
* Double Subverted in ''Manga/RanmaOneHalf'' 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 [[EfficientDisplacement 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]].
* ''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 ''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, [[{{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.
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[[folder:Comicbooks]]
* While recounting his past in one part of ''{{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 [[GreekMythology Atlas]] and [[Literature/TheBible Samson]] simultaneously, and breaks their arms.
* In one issue of ''JSA'', Atom Smasher and Black Adam armwrestle. Atom Smasher is over 7 feet tall with a body of solid muscle, and can grow even larger and stronger. Meanwhile, TheRock 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?"
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[[folder: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 from Krypton she easily beats him, injuring him in the process.
* Probably the most disturbing example in film history is the bar scene in ''TheFly'', in which a newly superpowered Jeff Goldblum snaps a mans wrist. With loud cracking sounds and NO GoryDiscretionShot.
* ''Film/CoolRunnings'' had the strong person do arm wrestling matches to raise money for the bobsled team. The strong men failed, but the last contestant, a large woman, succeeded.
* In ''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.
* ''Revenge Of The Nerds'' 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.
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[[folder:Literature]]
* 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.
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[[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 challenged Data to B'aht Qul (a Klingon challenge similar to arm wrestling). Data won in under a second, then calmly went back to what he was 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.
* Katie of ''Series/PowerRangersTimeForce'', having been bioengineered with superstrength, did 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.
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[[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.
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[[folder:Webcomics]]
* 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.
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[[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 ''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'': 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 episode of ''WesternAnimation/DuckTales'' 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 that he hauled ''a lot'' of gold in the Klondike [[note]]His everyday swimming-in-gold-coins is also quite an exercise routine.[[/note]]. This is when the prisoners start to respect Scrooge.
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