"Eustace, let me make one thing clear: I like a gentleman of
heft. Beef and beer lend a man weight"
A Big Beautiful Man is noticeably chubby, and perhaps even obese, and yet considered genuinely beautiful and voluptuous for it.
This trope was more common centuries ago, when having some extra body fat meant people were seen as healthier (as opposed to typically malnourished masses), and was also a sign of affluence. People could truly be Fat and Proud
. It has become more of a Forgotten Trope
over time as most societies have themselves become more affluent and have access to more and healthier varieties of food. Such large-set people are not as usually considered as attractive by today's audience or in today's works, where they would more likely be considered Fat Slobs
for their girth.
But while this is mostly true for women, it becomes a Double Standard
with men. The sheer size of the Ugly Guy, Hot Wife
page shows that Hollywood is more likely to let a fat man attract a lover with his personality and sense of humor. But per Rule of Funny
, their beauty in another character's eyes is usually an Informed Attractiveness
that doesn't even pretend to try to resonate with the audience.
A very notable exception is in works that appeal to gay men. Chubby men are not always
considered attractive in the gay community, especially in contexts where The Twink
or the Bishōnen
are considered the more marketable standard of beauty (ie, the majority of Western and Japanese works featuring gay men), and the rule of Hollywood Pudgy
is in full force. But there is a sizable niche interest that finds them sexy and even Moe
— these people are termed (for better or for worse) "chubby chasers
". Among these include The Bear
community, where body hair
is the chief point of attractiveness, but most sexy chubbiness is also usually the order of the day.
The trope can also still be Played for Laughs
when a chubby character sees himself as a Big Beautiful Man. Even then, it still often manages to come off as gay-for-oneself
often gives Big Beautiful Man status to characters that were not (specifically) intended as such. This can apply to practically any chubby character
. Even Santa Claus
is not immune.
The Spear Counterpart
of Big Beautiful Woman
. Big Beautiful Man can overlap to some degree with Acrofatic
, Bara Genre
, The Bear
, Big Fun
, The Big Guy
, Fat and Proud
, Hollywood Pudgy
and Stout Strength
. In fact, this trope overlaps with The Bear so often
that some people consider them the same trope — except that technically this trope is about body fat and the other trope is about body hair.
open/close all folders
Anime and Manga
- Circles has at least two of these. Marty is a chubby skunk who is at first timid about his weight, but his new roommate Taye actually finds him incredibly sexy, like a teddy bear, for which Ken derides him as a "chubby chaser". Then there's Arthur, the artistic Basement-Dweller — he's a...bear (both socially and literally), now in his 40s, who helps reassure Marty that there's nothing wrong with being portly.
- Watchmen: Dan Dreiberg. Once he stopped crimefighting, Dreiberg presumably stopped getting his usual exercise (read: thrashing bad guys) and put on some weight. Under that, though, he's still quite strong, and he has a pretty handsome face to go with it. The glasses don't make it any worse.
- Same said for Blue Beetle Ted Kord during his chubby period (a kind of recursive tribute, since Dreiberg was based on Kord).
- Bouncing Boy from Legion of Super-Heroes, especially his reboot counterpart Chuck Taine.
- Also from the Legion came R.J. Brande who, in one issue from the Reboot Legion's era, spent most of an issue in a towel. And from what we saw, it was quite pleasing to the eye for a man of his age and size.
- Cornfed from Livewires, who was designed to have a body like a husky, beefy Farm Boy and is even given a Shirtless Scene.
- Archer from Archer And Armstrong, especially from Valiant's rebooted line. While he's not as large as some of the examples listed here, as noted on the Stout Strength page he does have a rather substantial gut which he carries quiet well.
- Dale in Tucker & Dale Vs. Evil is a big guy who is attractive to the female protagonist because of his size and gentleness.
- Ray Stantz of the Ghostbusters franchise has a definite belly, but many fans find him all the more attactive because of it, as it only contributes to his already Adorkable personality.
- Dave Karofsky has had a very outspoken Gay male fan base since the episode "Never Been Kissed", many of whom simply prefer men of his build.
- Noah's Arc: Alex sees himself this way (and Trey agrees). Additionally, like the example above, much of the fanbase does prefer a man of his build.
- Dan from Roseanne. Portrayed as quite desirable (being portrayed by John Goodman can't hurt at all in that department), to the point where it's heavily implied (and stated, at least in a fantasy sequence) that Roseanne's best friend Crystal basically wants to do him like her taxes. Roseanne's sister, Jackie, even considers him a major catch.
- Viscera, the world's largest love machine.
- Mark Henry, during his Sexual Chocolate run.
- Of the nine main characters of Morenatsu, three (Tatsuki, Jūichi and Kōnosuke) fall squarely under this trope. Their LGBT Fanbase is huge.
- In the Super Mario Bros. series, Bowser is very attracted to himself, and considers himself to be the epitome of physique and manliness. But strangely, though he is very obviously chubby, he doesn't necessarily seem to see himself as chubby, at least until a particularly amusing scene in Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story.
- Mario is rather round, though he's slimmed down in recent years.
- Luigi, while taller than Mario, has a similarly sized paunch.
- The title of the CaptainGerBear work-in-progress ChubPan highlights this trope.
- Oleg from Saints Row: The Third is a giant Russian Genius Bruiser. He's also the object of Kinzie's affections... and probably those of quite a few of the game's female fans.
- Burt in Carpe Diem is a Big Beautiful Man who also has Stout Strength as a power-lifter. Rodney is a fat geek, but his brawny boyfriend Ken wouldn't have it any other way.
- Brad in The Class Menagerie is both muscled and has a noticeable gut, specifically by Author Appeal.
- Many of the guys in Blur the Lines fit this trope, which makes sense, considering half of the webcomic's reason for existing is for Author Appeal, and the author prefers big men.
- Jason from Something Positive is this. Given the cartoonish art style, though, the attractiveness part is mainly backed up by the number of women he attracts, and that can also be attributed to his brain or his big penis.
- The Wrong House has George who's intially the only one of the Power Trio with a name the most to offer the girl before the series was expanded and Flanderized him as a Kavorka Man and Ascended Extra that gets/has gotten/will get virtually every possible woman available including supposed reformed nun that became a registered sex offender for sleeping with him before he was 18 and doing his Jerk Jock/Ted Baxter friend's girlfriend right in front of him as payback for him cheating on her with a Tifa cosplayer. The apparent in-series reason why he gets so much tail: he's sincere and actually gives a damn about the girls.
- The Meek usually draws more realistic body types and is quite liberal in showing its characters shirtless or completely naked. So Pinter and Luca have garnered quite a few gazes for those that appreciate the particular body type.
- Norway from Scandinavia and the World, normally he has the same body shape as most of the male cast, but in more detailed depictions he is shown to be a bit large (in a burly way rather than overweight). Best exemplified in the comic "Sand in Weird Places".
- While That Guy with the Glasses has a lot of conventionally good-looking, slim guys (Benzaie, Doug Walker, Paw, Y Ruler Of Time, etc.), the big men like RolloT, Lanipator, former contributor Lord Kat note , and to some, Sean Fausz, get a lot of love too.
- Where The Bears Are is all about them.