In essence it describes a man with a hairy upper body. Generally shown during a Shirtless Scene or when a guy walks around in a tank-top or an opened shirt. Often indicates evil or an Anti-Hero.
Fuzzy chests or torsos can have different meanings depending on what body type they are used:
Type 1) When combined with a buff, muscular physique, it's usually to emphasize manliness or Badassery. Alternatively, it may mark a mature man (ie 35 and older) in contrast to a cast of younger men note A case of Reality Is Unrealistic since most men grow chest hair during puberty, if they grow any at all.
Type 2) When combined with an overweight body, it is generally to mean a boorish and/or unhygienic character. If used on Stout Strength, it usually indicates a Boisterous Bruiser.
No matter the type, in fiction, a Carpet of Virility almost always goes hand in hand with a very sexual, if not utterly lecherous, personality, be the bearer attractive or not.
Hairy chests can be seen as Fetish Fuel, especially in The Seventies, when it was quite common for men to show off their chest hair with open shirts and plunging necklines. The gay "bear" community also finds hairy, hyper-masculine men to be extremely desirable. It is also common in the Bara Genre. On a woman, this is almost universally considered to be prime-grade Squick material, sometimes comically associated with a Brawn Hilda.
See also Shirtless Scene, Walking Shirtless Scene, Rated M for Manly.
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Anime & Manga
Bleach: Kyoraku Shunsui and Isshin Kurosaki are both examples of Type 1, being buff, muscular, MANLY, Badasses. They're also both very sexual, even perverted, characters.
Blackbeard in One Piece is pretty much the epitome of Type 2.
France in Hetalia is the only character with body hair when naked, to emphasize his lecherous tendencies.
As such, his doppleganger from an Alternate Universe (Parallel!France 23) has no body hair.
Turkey too, and in fanon, Australia.
In an episode of the Dirty Pair TV Series, Yuri and Kei spend an episode debating whether their male co-agent has chest hair or not, and how 'disgusting' chest hair is. At the end of the episode, he reveals he has no chest hair.
Wolverine is a hairy son of a... gun, so his chest hair is more like just one part of his general fuzzy covering. That is, when artists don't decide to give him a full body wax. This has become alarmingly more common since the films, despite Hugh Jackman being fairly hairy himself.
Even before he was covered in blue fur, Beast of the X-Men was usually depicted as being covered from chest to ankles in body hair in his human form.
Judge Dredd: Dredd has been shown to have plenty of hair on his chest. Possibly it's a remnant of the time he was a werewolf, given that he's completely hairless in early stories.
Gaston's Villain Song in Beauty and the Beast has the line "And every last inch of me's covered with hair!" sung as he rips open his shirt. In the theatrical release, it was subverted in that there wasn't much there. (Chest hair is remarkably difficult to animate unless you stylize it into a solid mat like Zangief's, which wouldn't have worked here.)
There were most likely unforeseen (by Disney) circumstances with Gaston's brag. Get the Brain Bleach out after you really think about it - Gaston just said every last inch of him is covered with hair. ...EW.
In the Star Trek: The Next GenerationnovelImzadi Will Riker is attending a Betazoid wedding. As is traditional, everyone is naked. The woman next to him asks why human men are so hairy, referring to his chest. Will smiles and quips "traction." Apparently this story gets around (telepathic culture and all that), as after Will and Deanna have sex for the first time she fools around with said chest hair and repeats the quip. Read the first exchange here and the second exchange here.
The Elenium: While patching up a sword cut he's received, Sephrenia compares Kalten to a blond rug.
Discussed on Frasier. During the episode "Slow Tangle in Seattle," Daphne makes fun of Frasier. "You refer to your chest hair as your 'Rug of Love'." Although, it being Daphne, she pronounces it "roog."
Michael Bolton in "Said I Loved You But I Lied." His shirt is open down to three buttons, showing off his chest hair while he sings from the top of a goddamned mountain and white horses run through fire on the beach below him.
While Josh Groban's record company was trying to figure out how to initially market him before the release of his first album, they did a photoshoot by a pool that was an attempt to make him appear as a Boy Band member. Apparently, he fits this trope to a T. Or, considering the photoshoot being discussed, T shirts weren't being applied. Although when the images were discovered, there were quite a few jokes along the lines of "So, ma'am, would you like me to check your oil?", it's pretty hard to find a fan who saw them that minds that at all.
In an industry that's always been about being as tough and manly as possible, this trope has been largely averted with professional wrestling since some time in the 1980s. Like bodybuilding (which many a wrestler have a professional background in), the presentation of muscularity is a huge deal in professional wrestling, especially in the mainstream. So, wrestlers take a cue from the sport of bodybuilding by shaving and waxing away body hair to reveal their chiseled physiques.
Scott "Razor Ramon" Hall rocked a hairy chest back in the day, as he was, of course "oozing machismo, mang" Also, Shawn Michaels had one in the mid-late 1990s, and Albert, who might as well be a real life Wolverine in the hairy chest department. Albert would often get chants of "Shave your back!" from the crowd. Unfortunately, this was often the only reaction he'd get.
Zangief and Blanka in Street Fighter II. Zangief's chest hair is so iconic, that his Mecha costume has the equivalent in the form of a metal plate. And just in case you were concerned it isn't thick enough, they've also got a good growth of shin hair.
Team Fortress 2 has Saxton Hale, CEO of Mann Co, the company producing gear used in the game. He is always depicted bare chested and his chest hair grows in the shape of Australia. He's also the hero of Saxton Hale's Thrilling Tales as a pastiche of Steve Irwin: "You Will Believe a Shark can Cry". According to a comic about the Engineer Update, chest hair is a quality shared by all Australian men, implied to be brought about by Australium, a mineral that not only is responsible for their hyper-advanced technology but brings about literal Testosterone Poisoning (even Australian women have bushy mustaches). Hidden images in the update indicate that the Engineer's grandfather, Radigan Conagher, also developed a patch of chest hair (in the shape of Texas) and a bushy mustache in response to Australium exposure.
Star Fox: Who'd think someone like Wolf O'Donnell would get one in his Super Smash Bros. Brawl appearance? He's the Type 1 variety, too, when judged by his whole costume!
Detective Inspector Grosky of the Professor Layton series has a rather large amount of chest hair protruding from his overly tight suit. He'd like to be type 1, but occasionally shows shades of type 2.
Averted in The Venture Bros.. Brock Sampson has every other over-the-top manly stereotype going on, but they couldn't give him the Carpet of Virility because it over-complicated his animation. Jackson and Doc lament this during at least one commentary track. Occasionally in early episodes, you can still see evidence of it around his clothes.
Gravity Falls has Grunkle Stan. When Mabel tries to shave his hairy chest in "Dipper vs. Manliness", it comes back almost immediately.