If something requires a power cord to work, it presents a weakness usually with distance, usually not far from the power source. Compare Cut the Juice
when the plug is pulled.
Anime and Manga
- Neon Genesis Evangelion
- The titular EVAs need an external power source and an early episode even has Shinji do a power cord transfer at one point to move into an area that his current cord doesn't reach.
- In the 3rd film Rebuild of Evangelion 3.0 Q, this problem had been overcame with portable batteries (granted they had 14 years of time frame to invent one).
- Subverted in the Marvel Comics New Universe title, Spitfire and the Troubleshooters, where the fugitives are attacked by a robot tank. While the hero fights it in her Mecha, the Troubleshooters frantically try to stop it themselves by trying to hack into its remote control frequency, only to be unable to find it. It turns out that the tank is controlled and powered through a really long physical power cord from the operator so hacking into its control function through radio waves is impossible. Fortunately once they know this trick method, that means Spitfire then just needs to find the cord to cut it and stop the tank.
- In the film Help!, a Mad Scientist has a lab full of assorted devices, but keeps having to change the plugs to work with the power supply.
- Back to the Future: Doc Brown needs to connect a power line from the top of the clock tower (where the lightning bolt will strike) to ground level, where the DeLorean will use the energy to travel through time. Unfortunately, the power cord isn't long enough to do the job, so he has to improvise.
- Since the eponymous weapon in The Jackhammer Massacre is electric, this crops up. But not very often, since the cord seemed to be absurdly long.
- The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl contains perhaps the most literal example; some of the cronies utilized by Mr. Electricidad are literally powercords. This seems too easy, right? Reach the maximum distance they can stretch and you can beat them easily. Have no fear, though: they can plug into other powercord mooks for a shocking train of baddies.
- On The Office, Michael wanted to build a robotic memorial statue of his old boss, Ed Truck. Dwight suggested giving it a short power cord so it couldn't kill them all.
- In one FoxTrot arc, Roger bought a giant mobile phone that needed to be plugged into the mains to work. Andy pointed out how that defeated the 'mobile' part of 'mobile phone'.
- Get Fuzzy. In the strip for February 26th, 2013,. Bucky has come up with a wacky invention: a fan that's attached to a person's backside to keep their wallet from overheating their bottom. Rob Wilco wears it as a test, but complains that he can't move far due to the 3 foot power cord plugged into a wall socket.
- Adventure Send in the Clones. One of the R&D devices the Troubleshooters must test is a belt device that generates a force field around the wearer. One of its limitations is that it has to be plugged in to work, which will severely limit the user's mobility.
- Adventure "The Yellow Clearance Black Box Blues". The Troubleshooters are issued a Maxwell-Effect Moleculokinetic Field Device. It requires huge amounts of power to activate (too much for easily portable sources like power packs), so when the Troubleshooters go Outside of Alpha Complex they'll have to plug it into their vehicle's power supply. This will effectively prevent them from using it while away from the vehicle.
- Supplement Acute Paranoia, adventure "Me and My Shadow Mark IV". When the Mark IV warbot was first designed, Power Services insisted that be powered by a long cord attached to their generators. Since the Mark IV was intended to operate in the Outside beyond Alpha Complex, this demand was ignored.
- In Girl Genius, Anevka is a clank (robot) body created for a fatally injured noblewoman. She needs to stay connected to the large container where her actual body is kept in stasis. Near the climax of the story arc, the cables are cut and she freaks out when she feels no different — it turns out the real body is long dead inside the container and she has become an autonomous A.I. with Anevka's memories
- The Megadoomer in Invader Zim, which was a robot death machine that had to be plugged in for power due to a dead battery.
- On one episode of Teen Titans, Starfire travels to a Bad Future where the titans ended up splitting. Cyborg was the only one who stayed on the tower, because he had long ago burned all of his internal batteries, so he had to be constantly plugged to a large machine to keep functioning, and couldn't go anywhere he repairs them at the end of the episode, also Starfire returns to her time possibly preventing said future from happening in the first place.
- One episode of Carl Squared has the protagonists being chased by a doctor wielding a power drill. He chases them across the street and the power cord reaches its limit and pulls the plug out of the outlet. The doctor laments about not spending a few extra bucks to purchase the cordless version of the drill.
- In the Looney Tunes short "Ducking the Devil", Daffy Duck tries to calm down the Tasmanian Devil with music and lure him back to the zoo. His first attempt is with a radio ... except the cord doesn't reach all the way.
- On The Brave Little Toaster, the appliances need to find a way to leave their cabin to find their master, but need to stay close to an outlet to stay alive. The solution: a car battery attached to a rolling chair.
- A strange mystical example happened in the animated version of Conan the Barbarian in which Conan fights a near-invincible foe only to learn he is powered by a wizard using what is essentially a magic, invisible power chord of mystical energy. Defeating the foe involved finding a way to sever the energy connection.
- A VERY odd case in Turtles Forever, the main weapon on the Utrom Shredder-modified Technodrome is taken out... by Bebop and Rocksteady tripping over its power cord. Then, Utrom Shredder walks in front of the damn thing when they plug it back in!