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Baguette Beatdown
Dwarf bread: Meal of last resort. Weapon of first.

The hero is walking away from his triumphant victory at the local grocer with his spoils and is attacked. He has no weapon to defend himself with, but fortunately he just bought some ISO-Standard Urban Groceries, so he improvises and pulls out his trusty baguette to demonstrate that pain is not just the French word for bread.

After all, bread is the staff of life. Bonus points if the opponent grabs one too, cuing a Sword Fight.

A Sub-Trope of Nerf Arm, Edible Bludgeon and Food Fight. A person using such a weapon may be an Iron Chef, while anyone who can bake a loaf capable of concussing someone is a Lethal Chef.

Not what is meant by a Cockney hitting someone with his "Brown Bread".

Examples

    open/close all folders 

    Comic Books 
  • In the comic book version of The Tick, Paul the Samurai bakes a baguette around his sword to sneak it past customs. When fighting ninja later on, he doesn't bother removing the outer bread coating (though he does eventually eat it).
  • The Boys is not a series where you would expect this trope to be deployed, but during The Frenchman's reminisces, we get Le Saintes Des Haw-Haw, where Frenchmen settle their differences by jousting on Bicycles, using baguettes as lances. Frenchie claims that his father was killed by his childhood enemy thrusting a rock-hard stale croissant into the front wheel of the bicycle, which (if true) would count as de-nerfing this trope. Then again, he is just plain crazy (as well as Ax-Crazy)...

    Comic Strips 
  • In Peanuts, after Peppermint Patty returns from France, she takes a loaf of French bread to class and accidentally knocks Marcie off her seat.
  • In Bloom County, Opus lays waste to some mimes after they follow him from the grocery store with an olive loaf.
  • In a Garfield strip from 1980, Garfield enjoys "Playtime" with various foods. The second panel is him offering to "... take that machine gun nest out with my trusty bazooka here." The bazooka in question is a baguette. In another strip, Garfield shows Jon a weird lump in the tablecloth and offers him a baguette so he can flatten it. Right before Jon does it, he suddenly notices that Odie is missing...

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Clerks, Dante and Randal have a knock-down drag-out in the Quick Stop, during which Randal whacks Dante across the face with a loaf of bread.
  • There's a brief Baquette duel in the So Bad It's Good B-Movie Dead Right, when the main protagonist chases down the serial killer in a supermarket.
  • In Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo, there is a scene where Herbie is waiting at a stoplight at an intersection when a truck driver gets a French woman carrying some groceries angry at him. She proceeds to pound on the side of the truck with a baguette, causing no obvious damage to bread or to the truck. It does result in the Love Bug getting dirty.
  • In Cheech and Chong's the Corsican Brothers (don't worry if you never heard of it), Chong's character discovers the weapon potential of day-old french loaves.

    Literature 
  • In the Discworld novels, Battle Bread is a specialty of dwarven bakers. Of course, since gravel is one of the primary ingredients, it's also almost completely inedible, and is more effective as either a blunt instrument or a motivational tool. "Well, we could camp here for the night and dig out the bread for dinner... or we could keep going and see if we run across a convenient deer or berry patch or something. Failing that, we could eat our own feet." Some pieces are specifically designed for war. For dwarfs, bread baking is an art of warfare.
  • In Tamora Pierce's Protector of the Small novel Squire, Kel and company batter Neal with baguette-type loaves of bread because he won't shut up about how hot the queen is (and is going into a lengthy quote on the subject of hot queens).

    Live-Action TV 
  • The Goodies episode "Kung-Fu Kapers" (the Ecky Thump episode) has Tim breifly make use of a French martial art (called Oh-Hon-Hee-Hon or something like that) that involves hitting the opponent with a baguette... it has no effect whatsoever! Note that Ecky Thump is a "martial art" Bill learned when he was younger that basically revolves around hitting people with black pudding.
  • Dead Ringers: "Your bakery products are weak, old man!"
  • In Heroes, Hiro tries to defend himself against his katana-wielding father with a baguette. It works about as well as you'd expect.
  • In one episode of Kaamelott, King Arthur tries cutting a loaf of bread but can't even dent it with his knife. He is then informed that the peasants are revolting, and hadn't brought fresh bread to the castle for weeks. Arthur leaves table to have a serious discussion with the rebels — and, after reflection, pick up the stale bread as a bludgeon.
  • Leverage:
    Nate: Did you just kill a guy with an appetizer?
    Eliot: I dunno, maybe.
  • The Nanny: Fran was being forced to babysit this horrible little brat (her boss is a theater producer, the brat was the son of a critic.) He is pulling around Gracie by the hair, so Fran stops him by beaning him with a baguette.
    "Put the bagel down and step away from the breadbox!"
  • Almost Live!
  • In the first episode of She Spies, D.D. is forced to fight a man who grabs a fencing foil. D.D. grabs a large baguette, and proceeds to defeat him. A little later, it is shown to be subverted, as the loaf of bread was a prop from a movie set, and had been baked around a lead pipe.

    Music 

    Tabletop Gaming 
  • One less-than-serious article in an April edition of "Dragon" magazine included this trope taken Up to Eleven: the garlic bread golem!

    Video Games 
  • The classic Lucas Arts point and click adventure game Zak McKracken and the Alien Mindbenders features a stale baguette that could be used to kill a two-headed squirrel. You receive the baguette by annoying a baker into throwing it at you. The bread breaks the sidewalk.
  • Kass Basher (formerly titled "Whack-A-Kass"), a Neopets minigame, uses a baguette as one of the "baseball bats".
  • MMORPG RuneScape has a (very irritating) random event called the Sandwich Lady. Every so often (i.e. usually at least once a day) she appears out of nowhere and offers you one of a selection of treats (only one of which was actually useful for healing past level 10). Pick the wrong one, and she knocks you out (guess what with) and you wake up somewhere else. Fortunately, this event has been modified — she no longer pops up right in the middle of you doing something. Unfortunately, however, she still knocks you out with a baguette if you choose wrong.
  • In Kingdom o' Magic, in order to depose the High Steward of Minar Tragedy you have to get a sword baked into a baguette so you can get it past the guards.
  • Loaves of bread are available as weapons in Phantom Brave. With proper fusion, they can be quite powerful, granting the wielder a wide range of techniques.
  • In Tibia, there is a club weapon called "Stale Bread of Ancientness". You guessed it, it's a baguette.
  • In one of the competitions between Hu Delta Phart and Getta Loda Yu in the third game of The Spellcasting Series, you win a fight by casting a spell turning the lead Yu's weapon from a lead pipe into a loaf of bread (and a modified version of the spell turning the head Phart's weapon from a banana into a sword).
  • Should you eat the Stale Baguette in Kingdom of Loathing, you are mugged and beaten with it. You lose some hit points and Meat, but you still get the extra Adventures.
  • Mimi Baker/Mimmy Bread from Tales of Legendia uses a baguette as her weapon of choice when she shows up in the arena. She also uses renamed versions of Chloe's artes, such as Tiger Bread (Tiger Blade), and Bread Rain: Alpha (Sword Rain: Alpha), which she calls out appropriately.

    Web Animation 
  • In the Flash Power Rangers parody Go Go Parody Rangers!, the team's Megazord's Power Sword is a baguette!

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • In one episode of The Powerpuff Girls, Mojo Jojo beats an apparently invincible villain (due some sort of Unstoppable Rage) with his own hands and a baguette, culminating in a slow-motion final blow with the baguette. Mojo also used the baguette to whack a hapless grocery store employee earlier in the episode.
  • In an episode of Codename: Kids Next Door, Numbuh Five grabs two baguettes to fight Stickybeard in a grocery store. The villain mocks her for choosing a "sword" made of such a soft material. She retaliates by using the baguettes to knock all the cans off nearby shelves, and onto helpless Stickybeard.
  • Wakfu episode 8 "Xav the Baker" pushes this into a whole new level with a ninja-baker fighting by means of a giant Bread Golem.

    Real Life 
  • Any French bread more than 2 days old can get pretty hard. And brittle.
  • A joking version of this was used in the one and only battle of the Conch Republic War of Independence (Key West, Florida, 1982; TOW has the story). As a protest against a US Customs roadblock, Key West declared independence and bonked someone in a US Navy uniform over the head with a loaf of Cuban bread (similar to a baguette but longer and softer), then surrendered. Baguette Beatdowns have appeared from time to time since, including a 1995 protest against an unannounced army reserve exercise.
  • Have you ever... been so pissed you hit a cop with French bread?
  • Inverted by Egyptian protesters; some with nothing to use as a helmet strapped bread to their heads. (Gives a whole new meaning to "bread riot"...) This is less loony than it sounds, since Egyptian bread is a thick, tough brown pita that frankly could easily provide the same degree of protection as hard leather.

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