Big Badass Rig

In the future, we will put guns on our trucks

When Testosterone Poisoning hits the road.

A Sister Trope to Cool Car, this is the kind where even four wheels isn't enough, you need the diesel fumes and huge smoking pipes and plenty of axles and... well, you have the big rig truck that tends to be a mainstay in action movies and the like. Ostensibly a trope unique to the West, but it's caught on in any other region where the terrain is more accomodating to the regular use of big rigs, but mostly for Rule of Cool.


Examples:

Anime
  • Daimos in his Tranzer form.
  • The Mammoth Car from Speed Racer, essentially a train on wheels.

Comic Books
  • The U.S. 1 rig from the shortlived Marvel Comics title U.S. 1.
  • Spider-Man once fought a trucker who fancied himself a crime fighter named Razorback (who was rather incompetent and had a pretty dumb-looking cowl that looked like a boar's head; the story was written back when CB radios were becoming a fad for motorists other than truckers). Having said that, the modified rig he drove - which he named "The Big Pig" - was kind of cool; he could even drive it using a remote control.

Film

Literature
  • In The Pushcart War, three truck companies are the villains. The biggest and baddest of their truck models are the Mighty Mammoth, Ten-Ton Tiger and Leaping Lema.

Live-Action TV
  • Power Rangers used this in some of the Disney-owned seasons. Ninja Storm made the most use of their Mobile Command Center, while Dino Thunder brought out a suspiciously similar rig for their final assault on the villain base. SPD went with a new design for the SWAT Command Truck.
  • B.J. and the Bear. B.J. (Billie Joe) McKay drove a big rig truck. His sidekick was a chimpanzee named "Bear".
  • A late '80s action series called The Highwayman involved frontier lawmen traveling the roads in big black rigs. The lead character's cab even turned into a helicopter.
  • The original Knight Rider had one for a mobile base-cum-garage. Also, in a couple of episodes, KITT's Evil Counterpart Goliath.
  • The Supernatural episode "Route 666" has a possessed truck.
  • Thunderstone has “The Beast”, a huge truck dug up by the Protectors and used to do their heavy lifting. It was cool enough to live on long after the Protectors were gone, being used by the Nomads in the second season as a storeroom/Sundance’s bedroom/brig.

Pinball
  • "Ramp Warrior," the original version of Truck Stop, featured a flame-belching longnose tractor ramming its way past various barricades.

Tabletop Games
  • Ork wartrukks from Warhammer 40K. Each one is unique to its maker, has guns everywhere they can be strapped on (when not using less conventional but entirely orky weaponry like a wrecking ball the size of its engine), and of course, go faster if painted red.

Video Games

Western Animation
  • Rhino, Outlaw, Goliath and Bulldog from M.A.S.K..
  • Optimus Prime. Tractor trailers would become a mainstay after that, and Optimus would appear as other kinds of vehicles (and animals!), but there's a very good reason he's most associated with a truck.
    • The Decepticons had an equivalent in Generation 1 who also turned into a rig, Motormaster, the leader of the Stunticons and the core component of the Decepticon gestalt, Menasor. He was incredibly tough, but in one episode he dared try to face Optimus Prime in a head-on-head collision; it was a Curb-Stomp Battle with the villain on the curb.
  • King of the Hill - Hank is going to transport a single piece of furniture long distance for his mother, and rents a full-size semi rig for the job. As he justifies his choice to his awestruck friends, Bill sighs "You don't have to explain to us, Hank!"

Real Life All were very similar in basic layout, built around a very large and slow-turning Diesel or gasoline engine, all wheel drive, large tires with strong grip and weight distribution made for towing. While they did saw military use, their fame comes from civilian jobs, towing extra-large loads over rough ground and carrying oil drilling machinery in the wilderness.