De Film Laconic Main PlayingWith Quotes
"Until a man is twenty-five, he still thinks, every so often, that under the right circumstances he could be the baddest motherfucker in the world. If I moved to a martial-arts monastery in China and studied real hard for ten years. If my family was wiped out by Colombian drug dealers and I swore myself to revenge. If I got a fatal disease, had one year to live, and devoted it to wiping out street crime. If I just dropped out and devoted my life to being
Rule of Cool
Badass is an adjective used to describe a character who gets away with outright insane stunts (defusing a bomb with their teeth,
conning a mob boss
getting into a firefight with the entire army
, etc.) that would be very hard to pull off in
, or would get the person trying it killed several times over. A badass is a fantasy figure whom the audience roots for precisely because of how prone they are to
, to the point where they stretch or break the
Willing Suspension of Disbelief
. Of course,
Willing Suspension of Disbelief
may still be maintained depending on the mechanics of the universe.
It's notable that fans are more likely to tolerate a violent monster of a "hero" than a befuddled, cowardly
Most attempts to parody or deconstruct the badass have turned into
— no matter how nutty the character gets (like Rorschach from
the fans just cheer on how badass the character is. This has led to a new
. Writers beware: Take it too far and either
Out of the Inferno
of your work.
combines with an attempt at being trope
, the result is usually a very simple way to
invoke Leeroy Jenkins
Too Dumb to Live
For a child-friendly version of the badass whose badassery is somewhat diminished by the limitations of the work, see
For a not so complete list of badasses, see
Badass of the Week
not what you say to
. Characters that are Badass are often said to have
Action Dad: Dad kicks ass.
Action Fashionista: When they're not searching for the latest trends, they're kicking ass.
Action Girl: She kicks ass.
Action Hero: He kicks ass.
Action Pet: Your pet kicks ass.
Action Survivor: An everyday guy with no Action Hero qualities who is actually forced to be a badass.
Adaptational Badass: Maybe they weren't so badass in the manga or the TV show, but they really started cracking skulls in the anime and movies.
Ambadassador: They represent their hometown or home country and they plan to export a beating to those who mess with them.
Agent Peacock: Rule of Glamorous meets Rule of Cool in a effeminate guy who kicks butt.
Almighty Janitor: He may have the lowest rank, but he can kick more ass than his superiors.
Asskicking Pose: Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
Asskicking Equals Authority: Kick enough asses and you're fit to rule.
Awesome Aussie: The coolest thing to come from down under.
Badass Adorable: Okay, they're cute, but don't think that they can't leave you lying in a pool of your own blood.
Badass and Baby: They kick ass. Doesn't mean they can't go into battle and take care of an infant at the same time.
Badass and Child Duo: Badass has a child following him around. And woe betide anyone who tries to target that kid.
Badass Automaton: Made from metal and just as tough.
Badass Back: When someone is so badass, they drop a foe without even turning around.
Badass Bandolier: A utilitarian accessory worn so a badass can keep their tools of the trade handy.
Badass Baritone: Nothing says intimidating like a deep voice.
Badass Beard: Their facial hair is shorthand for "Don't mess with me."
Badass Biker: Nothing says badass better than a Cool Bike.
Badass Boast/ Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: Every good badass needs a cool line about how dead you're gonna be after they're done.
Badass Bookworm: Reads the encyclopedia for fun and capable of using it to beat your face in.
Badass Bureaucrat: Master of paper shuffling and the dreaded red tape. Capable of screwing with your life in many ways.
Badass Bystander: They were minding their own business until your turned their world upside down. Now they're gonna make you regret that mistake.
Badass Cape: Long flowing capes are the traditional accessory of certain breeds of badasses.
Badass Creed: A philosophy that espouses badass as a central tenet.
Badass Driver: Give them a vehicle and they'll do some hardcore stuff with it.
Badass Finger Snap: A badass snaps his fingers and something cool happens.
Badass Gay: Just because they're gay doesn't mean that they're not a bonafide badass.
Badass Grandpa: He might have grandchildren who see him as a teddy bear, but don't think he won't make you fear him if you cross him.
Badass in a Nice Suit: A badass needs nice clothes, don't you think?
Badass Israeli: An Israeli who's a badass.
Badass Longcoat: A great way to look is to wear an imposing overcoat.
Badass Mustache: Like Badass Beard, but above the lip.
Badass Native: When the natives are restless and scrotum-crushingly badass.
Badass Normal: The non-powered character in a group with superpowers, but who kicks just as much ass.
Badass on Paper: You wouldn't expect someone looking like a wimp/meek to be doing badass things, would you?
Badass Pacifist: Does not kill, not even fight. But when the time comes, they selflessly sacrifice their lives to save others.
Badass Preacher: He will minister to his flock and break you in half with his shepherd's crook if you think about hurting them.
Badass Princess: She is not one to get kidnapped. Instead, she breaks kidnappers in half.
Badass Santa: Santa kicks ass.
Badass Teacher: Teaches students and brutally schools the fools who take them on.
Badass Transplant: When someone becomes a badass via a prosthetic of some kind.
Badass Unintentional: Didn't plan to be a badass.
Badbutt: As badass as a kid-friendly show will allow.
Bald of Awesome: A lack of hair does not diminish the badassery at all.
Barbarian Longhair: Nothing screams badass like a guy with long, unkempt hair.
Beat Them at Their Own Game: When a badass beats you with your own special move.
Beware the Nice Ones: They're the nicest people you'll ever meet. But if you piss them off, they won't hesitate to make you regret it.
Beware the Quiet Ones: They don't talk much. However, they will kick your ass if you take that as a sign of weakness.
Beware the Silly Ones: They're always goofing off. However, push the wrong button and they will destroy you, no questions asked.
Big Badass Rig: A badass truck.
Boisterous Bruiser: He's loud, but you should never question his skill in kicking ass.
Born Winner: That automatically makes you a loser.
Brave Scot: Heroic Scottish Badass.
Brawn Hilda: Hilda's Braids of Action alone are more Badass than puny twig-man.
Brought Down to Badass: Had superpowers, lost them, but even afterwards, they can still kick ass.
The Captain: Who has the balls to run the coolest Cool Ship? (or The Squad)? This guy, of course.
Colonel Badass: Leads their troops in being badass by being one as well.
Commanding Coolness: Same badassery with a naval twist.
Contralto of Danger: Deep voices make women sound Badass.
Cool Shades: A traditional visual accessory of a badass.
Cowardly Lion: They may be cowardly, but when the going gets tough, they'll kick your ass.
Cowboy Cop: Badass with a badge who bends the rules to protect the society.
Cultured Badass: Enjoys the finer things in life and beating the tar out of foes with their fancy cane.
Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Acts like an idiot or non badass, either on purpose or not, but it's just to hide how capable they are at wreaking their opponents.
Dare to Be Badass: When someone decides to quit being normal and be a badass instead.
Dark Action Girl: She's evil and she kicks ass.
Deadly Doctor: Can cause the same hideous agony they usually cure.
Determinator: He doesn't give up. Ever.
Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: If you actually manage to defeat something so far above your level, you're either lucky or badass.
Dying Moment of Awesome: How a badass dies.
Dynamic Entry: How a badass says hello.
Ear Notch: Badasses with big ears have the scars to prove it.
Epic Battle Boredom: Mowing down waves of bad guys.
Eyepatch of Power: A great way for a badass to say "even with one eye, I'm still gonna kick your ass."
Fedora of Asskicking: A great hat to wear when kicking ass.
Fighting Irish: When the resident Badass happens to be Irish.
The Fighting Narcissist: A badass who knows just how good looking he really is.
Fights Like a Normal: Has superpowers, but fights like a Badass Normal.
Four-Star Badass: Has a general's rank and a long list of wrecked faces to their name.
Future Badass: That goofy, gawky character from the present day? In the Bad Future, that character's a hardcore badass.
Good Is Not Soft: Much like Beware the Nice Ones, except they'll just wait for you to piss them off so they can beat you with of an inch of your life.
Handicapped Badass: Don't mistake them for a cripple or they will crush you with what limbs they still have.
Blind Weaponmaster: Just because they're blind doesn't mean that they can't kick your ass.
Heartbroken Badass: You murdered their lover or family. They can and will do the same to you.
Hero Killer: When this guy gets involved, you might wanna run.
Heroic Dog: Dogs can be badass, especially when they protect those who are important to them.
Historical Badass Upgrade: A historical figure becomes more badass in fiction.
I Just Want to Be Badass: When a non-badass aspires to be one.
Imperturbable Englishman: Total and utter equanimity in the face of mortal danger - he'll finish his tea, complete The Times crossword puzzle, then hand you your rear end on a silver platter.
Implacable Man: There's no stopping this guy from coming to you, when you happen to be his/her target.
Intimidation Demonstration: For when the badass decides to show off their skills before combat.
Iron Woobie: Their life sucks, but instead of angsting and kicking ass, they go straight to the second part.
Kicking Ass in All Her Finery: A lady being badass in the most elegant clothes.
Kung-Fu Jesus: When a Messianic Archetype decides to be badass.
Lady of War: She is known for her grace and poise even while she's cutting you to pieces.
Lantern Jaw of Justice: That square jaw is the calling card of the one who will make you understand the meaning of the words "You'll pay for your sins."
Large and in Charge: Size does matter.
Let's Get Dangerous: From nobody to badass.
Lightning Bruiser: Good in almost every stats you know of.
Like a Badass out of Hell: When a badass walks into Hell or a reasonable alternative and leaves with a lot of kicked asses in their wake.
Little Miss Badass: Short of stature, but not of the ability to make you die horribly for underestimating her.
Long Dead Badass: This character was the most badass of their time.
Minored in Asskicking: A much more subdued version of the Badass Bookworm who doesn't actively practice their badass status, but can be if need be.
Majorly Awesome: Okay, so they're not a Colonel Badass or a Four-Star Badass. Don't mistake their relative lack of rank for a lack of asskicking.
Major Injury Underreaction: You ripped off their arm, but they didn't even flinch.
Mama Bear: Mess with her kids and die. Your choice.
Master Of All: So badass, s/he's badass at EVERYTHING.
Memetic Badass: While their actual badass credentials may or may not be justified, their reputation as a badass is considered Off The Scale.
Mighty Lumberjack: He's a lumberjack and he's badass.
More Deadly Than The Male: She makes up for her lack of strength by being more ruthless than you and her boyfriend combined.
Mother Russia Makes You Strong: And it isn't a healthy environment for weaklings.
Nerves of Steel: Badass under pressure.
Nonchalant Dodge: A more badass way of saying "try harder" is to evade an attack without breaking a sweat.
No Sell: An even more badass way of saying "try harder" than the Nonchalant Dodge is to take an attack to the gut without even the slightest hint of injury.
Once Killed a Man with a Noodle Implement: Badass enough to kill someone with strange implements.
One-Man Army: They don't need reinforcements. They are the reinforcements.
Panthera Awesome: Cats are awesome, especially big ones.
Pint-Sized Powerhouse: They may be small, but they pack quite a punch.
Pop Cultured Badass: They kick ass while listening to some rock music after having seen their favorite sitcom.
Powers Do The Fighting: This guy is so badass he can defeat you with his arms folded. His powers do all the fighting for him.
Ragin' Cajun: What Cajuns become when your face needs wrecking.
Rated M for Manly: Badass taken Up to Eleven.
Red Baron: Because every badass needs a nickname to go with the reputation.
Rescue Reversal: They don't need saving, they'll bail themselves out and save YOU while they're at it.
Retired Badass: They hung up their asskicking credentials. Doesn't mean they forgot how.
Rugged Scar: See that guy with the scar? Don't mess with him.
Scarf of Asskicking: A badass scarf.
Scary Black Man: This black guy looks like he can kick someone's ass. He can!
Sealed Badass in a Can: When a badass of some type is temporarily put in some sort of stasis so they can later be unleashed.
Shut Up, Hannibal!: How a badass lets you know that you talk too much.
Silk Hiding Steel: She is cool, calm, collected. The perfect proper lady. Don't mess with her.
Soul Brotha: He's a black man who grooves, who sways, and kicks ass while talking slang.
Specs of Awesome: A badass pair of glasses.
Testosterone Poisoning: A parody of Rated M for Manly.
Took a Level in Badass: When a non badass or a minor badass gets better at it.
Tranquil Fury: Being badass while being angry in a calm, ice-cold way.
Ultimate Blacksmith: This guy can turn the most useless junk into a weapon of asskicking.
Underestimating Badassery: When a badass is underestimated by those who should know better than to.
Unflinching Walk: They won't even stop to look at how much they just wrecked you.
Waif-Fu: Petite, yes, but that doesn't stop her from kicking your ass.
Warrior Prince: He'll lead his people to victory on the front lines.
If an example can be placed in these previous
, please put them there.
For many outstanding examples of badassness, see
Moment Of Awesome
hero of ancient myth was Badass Incarnate
, this trope is
Older Than Dirt
Now divided into Badass sub-pages:
Would you call that Badass?
No, I would call that bad, ass.