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[[caption-width-right:300:When they're not {{Hollywood Nerd}}s, they must be one of these.]]

That thing where geeks and scientists are always fragile, skinny guys without a shred of muscle to their names. Except when they're morbidly obese and/or neckbearded. Rarely do we see an athletic, rugged, or only mildly pudgy geek, because they are {{Squishy Wizard}}s.

While both versions of geek have been around for some time, the "geeks are skinny" image is slowly being displaced by "geeks are fat" as the world obesity rate rises and the average weight of "attractive" Hollywood actors falls. The hours of inactivity and unhealthy eating habits are sufficient justification, and can cause this to be TruthInTelevision. The older form also has justification in the "ForgetsToEat" aspect of things, or possibly because CrackIsCheaper and therefore the geeks only spend the bare minimum amount of money on food that they need to in order to stay alive while pouring the rest of their income into their hobbies (which explains why the BasementDweller is almost always a fat geek, he doesn't buy his own food so he has more of it to eat). The reverse is also true as those entering such industries age and realize they're losing their youthful metabolisms and as such professions become more of a career and less a stepping stone to other things.

Compare HollywoodNerd. Occasionally coupled with a NerdyInhaler to try and [[JustifiedTrope justify]] it. {{Badass Bookworm}}s often, but don't always, avert this. May overlap with FatAndSkinny if both are in the same scene together.

!! Skinny Examples:

[[AC:{{Anime}} and {{Manga}}]]
* ''CodeGeass'': Lelouch, the genius who plays chess on a country-sized game board, is regularly teased for being out of shape compared with Suzaku, Sayoko and even Milly.
* ''Manga/DeathNote'': L, a pale, skinny man who eats like a fat geek. He's partial to sugar.
* Nozomu Itoshiki the protagonist of ''Manga/SayonaraZetsubouSensei'' is a good-looking nerd, but is quite thin and physically puny, not to mention very pale. The only exercise he seems to do is strengthening his neck muscles, so he can attempt suicide without killing himself.
* Arguably [[HotScientist Verde]], [[NerdsAreSexy Shouichi]], and Spanner, from ''Manga/KatekyoHitmanReborn''. All three are rail-thin (especially Verde), and painfully intelligent (especially Verde) in their respective fields (science for Verde, mechanics for Shou, and robotics for Spanner). The three of them hardly ever leave their labs (once again, especially Verde).
* ''Manga/{{Eyeshield 21}}'': Yukimitsu is incredibly skinny, which really doesn't help when playing American Football.
* ''Manga/SlamDunk'': Yoshinori is a LethalJokeCharacter who looks every bit the stereotypical nerd.
* Harris, Clark, and Martin, Cindy's three colleagues (and fellow MIT grads) in ''Manga/ShinryakuIkaMusume'', are respectively on the skinny side of average, emaciated, and obese. At one point they sink into depression; Harris and Clark become fat, while Martin starves himself thin.
* In ''Manga/{{Genshiken}}'', Kousaka and Madarame are skinny, while Kugayama and Tanaka are fat. Resident asshole Haraguchi is also fat. Everybody else is pretty normal.
* ''Franchise/YuGiOh'' is fundamentally a series about gaming nerds, and the style gives basically everyone elongated proportions. Dark Yugi, Kaiba, and Bakura (both versions) are all particularly skinny and nerdy.

* Anthony Michael Hall in ''Film/TheBreakfastClub'' and maybe a couple of other movies of that era.
* More skinny ones were in ''Film/RevengeOfTheNerds''.
* Matt Farrell in ''Film/LiveFreeOrDieHard''. Warlock (played by Kevin Smith) is an example of the other type.
* Creator/EddieDeezen, famous for playing (among other roles) stereotypical nerd Eugene in ''{{Grease}}'', Malvin in ''WarGames'' and Eddie Lipschultz in [[http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0092210/ The Whoopee Boys]].
** Not to mention his most famous animated role, [[WesternAnimation/DextersLaboratory MANDARK!!]] ''[[EvilLaugh HA, HA-HA, HA, HA-HA, HA-HA!!]]''
** WarGames actually paired-up Deezen as the skinny geek, with Maury Chaykin playing an overweight geek.
* ''Disney/AtlantisTheLostEmpire'' has one.
--> '''Kida:''' ''(to Milo)'' "You are a scholar, are you not? Judging from your diminished physique and large forehead, you are suited for nothing else!
* Tim in ''Film/AboutTime''.
* In ''Film/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles2014'', Donnie is the tallest of the four brothers, standing half a head taller than Raph or Leo, and is skinny compared to the others.

* Literature/SherlockHolmes is thin as a rail, because he simply ForgetsToEat half the time. This doesn't concern him, because he considers the only important part of himself to be his brain, of which everything else is merely an appendage. Otherwise inverted, though, as he is trained in several forms of fighting and can easily defend himself if need be. He's also likely ripped: in "The Speckled Band" he straightens a steel fireplace poker after a client's stepfather tries to threaten him by bending it. Straightening it would actually require more strength than just bending it.
* Literature/TheCanterburyTales has the clerk, making this trope OlderThanPrint. The clerk is described as a student of philosophy or theology at Oxford, who is wire-thin because he forgets to eat and would rather spend what little money he scrounges together on Aristotle works than food or clothing.
* In Creator/CoryDoctorow's ''[[http://baens-universe.com/articles/When_Sysadmins_Ruled_the_Earth When Sysadmins Ruled the Earth]]'', a major character is a "type-two sysadmin, over six feet tall, long pony-tail, bobbing Adam's apple. Over his toast-rack chest, his tee said CHOOSE YOUR WEAPON and featured a row of polyhedral RPG dice."
* Fitz, from the ''Series/DoctorWho'' Literature/EighthDoctorAdventures novels, who is described as looking like he's [[NoodlePeople made of pipecleaners]]. He's quite into SpeculativeFiction, particularly ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'', and once dubbed a sea monster "{{Cthulhu}}", although his characterization generally isn't overtly geeky.
* Ponder Stibbons in the ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' novels, a computer/science geek wizard who is "by [his] own admission, a wet and a weed".
* The titular character of the ''Literature/MediochreQSethSeries'' is unquestionably a massive nerd, and is permanently stuck in the form of a weedy teenager.
* It's a running gag that the only muscle that the titular character of the ''Literature/ArtemisFowl'' series cares about is his brain. The rest of him is scrawny, and he's uncoordinated and small in stature.

* Series/{{Sherlock}}, like his [[Literature/SherlockHolmes literary counterpart]], is ridiculously skinny and claims not to eat on cases - the number of times he is shown eating in six episodes could be counted on one hand. Prior to filming, Creator/{{Benedict Cumberbatch}} had another role as a cancer patient, but didn't want to shave his head because he was growing out his hair for ''Sherlock''. He opted to lose 15 lbs. instead, giving his character an emaciated appearance, then kept the weight loss for ''Sherlock'' because he wanted the impression of "mind over body."
** Fans like to believe that Sherlock is slightly heavier in Series 2 because [[TheWatson John]] has been making him eat, but in reality Benedict [[http://www.benedictcumberbatch.co.uk/the-game-is-on-an-afternoon-with-mark-gatiss-and-friends-at-the-criterion-theatre/ gained weight]] to prepare for his role in ''Series/ParadesEnd'', which was going to be filmed shortly afterward. [[HollywoodPudgy Not that the weight gain is terribly obvious]]...
* Sheldon Cooper of ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'' is one of these. He was described by another character as looking like a praying mantis. The other three geeks also have skinny physiques. It's just that Sheldon's is more pronounced due to being a head taller than the other three.
** However, Leonard's default outfit appears to put about 20 pounds on him.
** Howard is described as looking "like a human chicken wing" in his bathing suit. He also has only 3% bodyfat, and is ''very'' proud of this. Of course, he also appears to have only 3% muscle.
** It was mentioned on the making of that Leonard's clothing is deliberately oversized to hide the fact that the actor is quite well built in order to fit in with this trope. Likewise, Howard's clothing is overtight to make him look even more skinny.
* Screech from ''Series/SavedByTheBell''.
* Steve Urkel in ''Series/FamilyMatters''.
* Jerry Steiner of ''Series/ParkerLewisCantLose''.
* Lucas on ''Series/PrettyLittleLiars'', a photography nerd. Plus points to the writers who actually made him look threatening and scary at one point. Then Hanna smacked him with a boat oar and knocked him into a pond.
** Averted by Caleb, who is a PlayfulHacker. His appearance could be described by MrFanservice.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'':
** The Doctor's [[TheNthDoctor incarnations]] tend to be on the skinnier side, particularly Ten and Eleven. Ten's case gets lampshaded the most - Donna jokes about it more than once, and Eleven's immediate reaction on meeting him was...
--> "How very skinny. That is proper skinny! I've never seen it from the outside, it's like a special effect! Oi, ha, matchstick-man!"
** Creator/PeterCapaldi as the Twelfth Doctor is continuing this. Clara calls him a "grey-haired stick insect".
** The Fourth Doctor usually just looked like a big bulky pile of clothes, but as Creator/TomBaker was a starving actor before he started on the show, he was pretty lanky underneath all the layers.
* Dr. Spencer Reid from ''Series/CriminalMinds'' almost looks like he's made of wire. From the episode "Identity":
-->''(Reid knocks on a guy's door)''
-->'''Militia Man''': ''(answers door, points to a no soliciting sign)'' What the hell do you want? Can't you read?
-->'''Reid''': I'm not a salesman, I'm with the FBI.
-->'''Militia Man''': FBI? You're not serious? You look like a pipe cleaner with eyes. I could snap you like a twig.
-->'''[[CoolOldGuy Rossi]]''': ''(stepping into view)'' But then, he isn't alone.
* Eric Forman from ''Series/That70sShow'' is often teased for his skinniness.
* ''Series/{{Chuck}}'', although it takes Adam Baldwin on the male side, and Yvonne [[FanNickname Strathotski]] on the female side to really count as this.
* Murray 'Boz' Bozinsky from the ''Series/{{Riptide}}'' series.
* Phillip from ''Series/KamenRiderDouble'' is on the skinny half of the trope - and while he may not be much skinnier than his co-star Shoutaro, his very tight clothing under a billowing coat emphasizes his skinniness.
* Abed in ''Series/{{Community}}'', though it's very much averted with Troy.
** "Fat" Neil.
* Ally of ''Series/AustinAndAlly'' is short and skinny, but still cute via {{Adorkable}} and ShesGotLegs.
* Wesley from ''Series/{{Degrassi}}'' fits very cleanly into the thin and dorky mold, his geek cred being science and academics based. Adam, meanwhile, was the short thin comic book nerd variety.

* Otacon in ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid'' was going to be fat, but wound up a skinny nerd in the finished product.
** And by ''Sons of Liberty'', they'd [[{{Bishonen}} forgotten he was even supposed to be a nerd at all]].
* Bernard and Laverne on ''ManiacMansion'' and ''DayOfTheTentacle''.
* The "Super Nerd" trainer class in ''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}''.
* In ''Videogame/{{Bully}}'', there's an entire clique of nerds. Three of them (Algie, Fatty and Melvin) are fat, and the others (Earnest, Bucky, Cornelius, Donald and Thad) are scrawny with hunched postures.

* Tedd from ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive''. He even [[http://www.egscomics.com/?date=2007-11-24 sees himself as this]] during an ImagineSpot where he compares himself to other, "better" men [[MagicalGirlfriend Grace]] might meet at school.
* [[{{Keet}} Hanna]] from the eponymous ''Webcomic/HannaIsNotABoysName''. Tiny (around 5'3,) and skinny as a rail, but with wide shoulders and big hands that make him [[{{Adorkable}} super awkward]].
* [[{{Goth}} Jessica]] from ''WebComic/{{Freakwatch}}'' is quite nerdy, with an obvious fascination with puzzles, horror movies and electronics, and is somewhat on the chunky side. [[BlackAndNerdy Warren,]] a fellow horror fan and RPG enthusiast, is rail-thin by contrast.
* Gary in ''Webcomic/MenageA3'' initially looks to fit the skinny pattern, exacerbated by his frequently poor posture. Really, though, he's just slim, and he seems to be in pretty good shape for someone who's never seen to take any exercise, to the point of averting the trope; the comic's female cast have no trouble finding him cute, even or especially when he's stripped. See below on his friend Jung.
* Teenager Alex of ''Webcomic/SandraOnTheRocks'' more or less claims to fit the trope ("I'm a gamer! How would having abs help ME?"), but actually, he's pretty {{Adorkable}} from the start -- and then his friend Marie (herself a slim teenage GamerChick) catches the physical fitness bug, and becomes determined to get him ripped.

* Ferret of the WhateleyUniverse. So was Jobe, before he accidentally pulled a ProfessorGuineaPig and turned himself into a statuesque drow elf girl.

* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' also had Homer's roommates when he was in college. Two thin, one fat, all geeks.
* Harold from ''WesternAnimation/TotalDramaIsland.''
** To a lesser extent, Cody and Noah are both skinner than any of the non-geeky guys, not to mention shorter.
* One of the scariest examples was found in an early episode of ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill''.
* Flint Lockwood in Sony's ''CloudyWithAChanceOfMeatballs'', who also has [[EinsteinHair messy mad scientist hair]].
* Gretchen Grundler from ''WesternAnimation/{{Recess}}''.
** Vince's brother Chad as well. In fact, he looked nearly identical to [[Series/FamilyMatters Steve Urkel]].
* Steve, Snot and Toshi on ''WesternAnimation/AmericanDad''
* Ned from ''WesternAnimation/KimPossible''.
* Zoey from ''WesternAnimation/TheProudFamily''.

!! Fat Examples:

* Zodon of ''ComicBook/PS238''. Or at least his hologram. His true appearance appears to be rather normal, at least for a person with a oversized cranium whose lower body is never shown due to his hover chair.
%%* Kalish of ''ComicBook/UniversalWarOne''.

* ''Film/JurassicPark'': Dennis Nedry
* [[Film/LiveFreeOrDieHard W4RL0Q]]
* Maury Chaykin's "Jim Sting" in ''Film/WarGames'' (he's the one who calls Eddie Deezen "Mr. Potato Head").
* Glenn the hacker from the first ''[[TransformersFilmSeries Transformers]]'' movie.

* Oscar in ''Literature/TheBriefWondrousLifeOfOscarWao''--the 2008 Pulitzer Winner--is a hugely overweight Star Wars nerd from the Dominican Republic.
* One of Lisbeth Salander's few friends in Stieg Larsson's ''Literature/MillenniumTrilogy'' is an obese geek with poor social skills (except online).
* Harold Lauder of ''Literature/TheStand'' was overweight (in the novel, anyway; the miniseries turned him into a skinny geek or arguably a HollywoodGeek).
%% * ''Literature/MaximumRide'''s [[MadScientist ter Borcht]] is described as fat. Is he evil? You get three guesses and the first two don't count.
* Literature/SherlockHolmes' brother Mycroft: possibly even more brilliant than Holmes but completely uninterested in physical activity beyond the minimum.
* In Cory Doctorow's ''[[http://baens-universe.com/articles/When_Sysadmins_Ruled_the_Earth When Sysadmins Ruled the Earth]]'', the main character is "a type-one admin, with an extra seventy or eighty pounds all around the middle, and a neat but full beard that he wore over his extra chins. His tee said HELLO CTHULHU..."
* In ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'', there's the bookish Samwell Tarly of the Night's Watch.
* Bill in ''Literature/DontCallMeIshmael''. He is bullied for both his weight and being a fan of Fantasy and science-fiction. He loses weight later in the series and becomes more self-confident, but even then he is still quite big.

* Sylvester from ''Series/{{Scorpion}}'' fits the "geeks are fat" dynamic.

* William Barfée from ''The25thAnnualPutnamCountySpellingBee'', at least in most productions.

* Sal Manella from the ''Franchise/AceAttorney'' games, more like a fat {{Otaku}}.
* Ultimate {{Otaku}} Hifumi Yamada from Franchise/{{Danganronpa}} is so fat that [[spoiler:his weight becomes a key point in solving his murder case]].
* In ''VisualNovel/SteinsGate'', MadScientist Rintaro Okabe is very skinny. PlayfulHacker Itaru Hashida, on the other hand, is extremely fat.

* Parson Gotti was a classic roleplaying nerd till he was summoned to ''{{Webcomic/Erfworld}}''. He's slimming down recently.
** Those daily patrols through the whole city and the long rooms and tall stairwells in the main building must be helping.
** Natural Signamancy (the magic of making the appearance of things reflect their roles and personalities) would also play its part; Parson's determination to be more personally involved in the battles he directs is being represented in his physique.
* Jung in ''Webcomic/MenageA3'' definitely matches the plump version of the trope -- though he's not morbidly obese. See above on his "skinny" pal Gary.

[[AC:Web Original]]
* The [[{{Imageboards}} Board-tan]] representing 4Chan's /tg/ (the board for discussing tabletop games) is drawn as either skinny or fat.
* Website/SomethingAwful once featured a ''WebComic/{{XKCD}}'' parody with a shop that only sold T-shirt in sizes small and XXXXX-large.
* Open Source Greg of [[WebAnimation/TeenGirlSquad 4 Gregs]] is fat. The other 3 are skinny-ish, but in a StickFigureAnimation that's nothing unusual.
* ''WhateleyUniverse'' examples: Overclock, the Mountain Dew guzzling computer deviser, and Erlenmeyer, the chem deviser both. Belphegor (yes, his codename is Belphegor) definitely counts too.

* The Comic Book Guy on ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons''
** In one episode Comic Book Guy attempts to return a Franchise/StarTrek belt he won as a prize because it was sized medium, and "the average Trekker has no use for a ''medium-sized'' belt".
* ''WesternAnimation/KimPossible'': Wade Load, the overweight variety
** Cousin Larry
* Reginald "Skull", a video-game crazed comic geek from ''MonsterHouse''.
* On ''WesternAnimation/TotalDramaIsland,'' both Beth and Ezekiel could count as minor examples--she's plump and he's at least flabby, in contrast to the other characters who are mostly skinny girls, athletic guys or skinny geeks listed above.
* Barry on ''WesternAnimation/AmericanDad'' is obese.
** However, it's implied that the anti-psychotic meds he takes make him eat more.
*** Steve is unusually strong when he's angry, but always comes across as weedy whenever Stan tries to encourage him to do anything that involves strength. This is largely a case of DependingOnTheWriter.
* Lenny the obsessive Powerpuff Girls nerd in ''WesternAnimation/ThePowerpuffGirls'' episode "Collect Her".

!! Subversions:

[[AC:{{Anime}} & {{Manga}}]]
* At first glance, [[{{Otaku}} Hajime]] from ''Manga/ICantUnderstandWhatMyHusbandIsSaying'' appears to be a skinny example. [[ShirtlessScene Then he took off his shirt in episode 7]]. It's explicitly noted in the manga that he does exercises to keep himself fit, particularly the abdominal region.
* Matt from ''Manga/DeathNote''. For someone who spends most of his time sitting around [[VideoGameCulture playing video games]] and appears to have a taste for junk food, he does have [[http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/deathnote/images/c/c1/35.png/revision/latest?cb=20110507203616 nice biceps]]!

* The protagonists in ''Film/FreeEnterprise'' are hardcore sci-fi nerds (especially concerning ''Franchise/StarTrek''), but are both in pretty good shape and are occasionally shown shooting hoops. One of them gets laid on a regular basis.

* Billy on ''Series/MightyMorphinPowerRangers''. Justified because he, you know, fights monsters every week.
** Early on, the costume department made a valiant attempt to make him look like a Thin Geek, but they gave it up for a bad job after a season or two (FYI, David Yost was a ''GYMNAST'' before playing Billy.)
* Connor Temple from ''Series/{{Primeval}}''. One hell of a geek, but managed to carry Cutter, who is at least as tall as him, maybe taller, out of a collapsing building. If you ever see him sleeveless, you'll see why.
** He also manages to survive in prehistoric times for a ''year'' and comes out pretty BadAss to the point where it's strange to him after coming back to London that he doesn't constantly have to worry about survival and that both him and Abby can sleep at the same time without a dinosaur eating them.
* [[Series/{{Leverage}} Hardison]] is pretty fit for a guy who spends days at a time staring a computer screen. Even before the team formed and he had to do more physical stuff he was only lanky, not out of shape.
** This point is driven home in the hazing scenes of "The Experimental Job" where he is forced to strip down to his underwear and run the length of a college campus and he's basically the most cut guy of the group.
* Daniel Jackson on ''Series/StargateSG1'' is given as much action as any of the other members of the team. While they try to hide his actor's actual physique, it's never implied that he's physically less able than the other members - sporting heavier weapons in later seasons as he becomes a more experienced combatant. Of course, he ''is'' an archaeologist by profession and presumably did a certain amount of field-work, which can be pretty physical.
* On a related note, most of the field archaeologists on ''Series/TimeTeam'', particularly Phil Harding.
* Roy, from ''Series/TheITCrowd''. He is tall, oafish and slightly pudgy in the middle. His attire could be described as geek-chic, though somewhat boyish,and is shown to be socially confident to a fault. In fact, his love life cases him trouble on more than one occasion. Moss, however, is an example played hilariously straight.
* Freddie from ''Series/ICarly'' in later seasons. Puberty has been kind to him.
* While K.C. and Connor both check off all the appropriate geek checkboxes as Gifted Program students that built a robot, then went on to join the academic quiz team? They also are both on the football team. K.C. was always a bit physical, but Connor's actor was blessed by puberty and gained several inches in height since he started on the show.
* Will from ''Series/TheInbetweeners'' is actually the least slim of the four protagonists, but he is still not overweight by any account.

* The [[http://plantsvszombies.wikia.com/wiki/Arcade_Zombie Arcade Zombie]] from ''VideoGame/PlantsVsZombies2ItsAboutTime'' is a gamer geek who's addicted to arcade games... and is one of the most muscular zombies in the game, second only to the [[GiantMook Gargantuars]]. He uses said physique to push an arcade machine that spawns 8-bit zombies when his 8-bit Jam plays.

* Justin from ''Webcomic/ElGoonishShive'' works at a comic shop, and has pretty much the personality you would expect considering his workplace, but since he's been doing martial arts for years he's actually in shape. Catalina's remark upon seeing him is [[http://egscomics.com/?date=2010-04-16 "Holy crap! Aren't comic book guys supposed to be grapefruit shaped?"]] like the nameless extras in the last panel (later [[http://www.egscomics.com/index.php?id=1873 identified]] as Rich [fat] and Larry [skinny]).
** Elliot isn't as geeky as the rest of the main characters, but he does have some tendencies, and he's easily the most fit out of them all. [[AvertedTrope Or he might be the closest thing Dan Shive could write to a meat-head jock while still making him fit into the ensemble.]]
* Naps from ''Webcomic/{{SSDD}}'' actually works out, which is why Anne [[http://www.poisonedminds.com/d/20080515.html doesn't believe he worked in IT]] (not that he actually did, but his former co-workers did fit into both stereotypes.)

[[AC: WebOriginal]]
* WhateleyUniverse has a fair number of attractive geek types, though most of those seem to be [[HotScientist female]], for some reason. Anyone who is both a Devisor or Gadgeteer and an [[TheBeautifulElite Exemplar]] will count. Several [[PowerUpgradingDeformation GSD]] cases, such as Montana and Gadget (who resemble a sasquatch and a [[PettingZooPeople humanoid squirrel]], respectively), would also be subversions, but not in a positive sense.