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Hair-Trigger Temper
Dude, he brought you your drink. What more do you want?

"Some poser hands me cake at a birthday party.
Whatcha want me to do with this? Eat it?
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE GROUND!
I threw the rest of the cake too!
Welcome to the real world, jackass!"
The Lonely Island, "Threw It On The Ground"

A character with a hair-trigger temper flies into a rage at the slightest provocation. Masters of Disproportionate Retribution, they react explosively to the slightest annoyance. Unlike someone with a Berserk Button, who is generally calm unless their specific button is pressed, characters with a hair-trigger temper can be set off by anything. This makes them far less predictable — and far more dangerous to any poor sod who doesn't know what they're dealing with.

In comparison to the "avoid the Big Red Button" approach with a Berserk Button, conversation with someone like this is like trying to navigate a minefield without a metal detector. You know the danger's there � in fact, it's probably all over the place � but you have no clue exactly where it is. This person is not normal until proven otherwise. At best he's tetchy and anxiety-inducing. At worst, he's a surly, dangerous, ticking time bomb. The very act of talking to them might be enough to set them off. Trying to joke with them is downright suicidal. And if you should end up Digging Yourself Deeper or fall down a Freudian Slippery Slope? You're screwed. And you will slip up; many such characters are manipulative types who excel at Twisting the Words, making the audience suspect that they're not just easily offended, but are actively searching for an excuse to go off on someone. Extra points if they then pull a Why Did You Make Me Hit You?, to make the "offender" look like the bad guy. Even just trying to stay away from them won't necessarily help; they're likely to take being ignored or avoided as a deliberate snub, and... well, you get the picture.

Characters with a hair-trigger temper are generally grumpy to everybody, but they usually have a favorite victim for their rampages — often a Nave Newcomer who doesn't understand how they keep managing to offend the guy. This can be harmful to the victim's health — while heroic characters generally restrain themselves to verbal abuse, Anti Villainous ones can get physically violent, and out-and-out Villainous ones may even kill people for annoying them. However, such characters are essentially bullies — if someone tougher or higher ranked than them tells them to knock it off, they probably will, at least for the moment. In a Four-Temperament Ensemble, this character is Choleric.

This can obviously have disastrous consequences though if they let their temper get the better of them far too often. Expect the victim who has taken too much abuse to suddenly snap in front of them with sudden and alarming reversal of roles, where the abuser's rage now pales in comparison to their victims.

The real life disorder associated with this trope is Intermittent Explosive Disorder.

Compare Drama Queen (who acts dramatic at the drop of a hat).

Contrast Extreme Doormat (who will not respond angrily to anything), Passive-Aggressive Kombat, Rage Breaking Point. The particularly psychotic examples almost always overlap with Ax-Crazy. Doesn't blow up too, unfortunately.


Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Advertising 
  • A Snickers ad had a guy turn into Joe Pesci who blew up at every single comment when he was hungry.

    Anime and Manga 
  • Bleach:
    • Mayuri Kurotsuchi, the unhinged Mad Scientist, has something of a hair-trigger temper. This was extremely prevalent in his early appearances, where he flew off the handle at the most minute of provocations, which he often took out on his daughter. He has chilled out significantly since then, however, and while he is still callous and easily annoyed, he handles it a lot better. The running joke in the fandom is that Ichigo's group broke into Soul Society on one of Mayuri's bad days. This is made even funnier later on when Mayuri offers only a complaint when Ichigo dares refer to him without rank or honorifics: the other captains comment that Mayuri must be in an excellent mood to let Ichigo off so lightly. Mayuri's good mood does promptly vanish a short while later when Ichigo compares him to Urahara. Even a good day can't stop Mayuri's temper triggering to that accusation.
    • Kensei Muguruma's personality. When first meeting the Vizards, Orihime nervously asked where the bathroom was. Love and Lisa had to restrain him from hurting her out of pure irritation. His method for comforting a child almost killed by hollows was "Smile, dammit!". For extra humour, he is stuck with a lieutenant who happens to be The Ditz meets Man Child, who flits between Genki Girl and Hair-Trigger Temper over the most minor things (such as sesame-topped rice balls).
    • Hiyori Sarugaki hates everyone, and takes offense at nearly anything the other characters say to her. She even once jump-kicked Shinji for literally no reason before telling him that she wasn't going to apologize.
    • Byakuya Kuchiki is revealed to have had one in his youth. His grandfather commented that he needed to learn how to control the temper before he could develop his talent. As an adult, he acts like The Stoic but there are very strong hints that he's merely become extremely good at hiding the fact he's still got a short temper.
  • Eiri Yuki from Gravitation has this sort of temper with boyfriend Shuichi whenever he's trying to mess with the guy's head. In a slight subversion, however, Shuichi catches on to this ploy pretty quickly. That's not to say that he's any good at defending against it though.
  • If you so much as blink around Revy in Black Lagoon, odds are she'll get pissed off enough to fill you with holes.
  • Chi-Chi from Dragon Ball...big time.
    • Other prominent examples are Bulma, Bad Lunch, Piccolo, Vegeta, Pan (GT), and Gotenks.
    • Examples in the villains are Nappa, Freeza and Kid Buu/Super Buu.
  • Lina, Lina, Lina... insult her appearance (namely her small bustline,) deny her food or money, spill her food, upstage her - any of these warrant either some sort of explosion, screaming, or physical harm. Two egregorious examples are Lina nearly drowning Amelia in a hot spring after Amelia makes a lighthearted joke about growing her bustline, and Lina nuking an entire restaurant for the owner accidentally stepping on a sardine she was eating (which she didn't want in the first place) in the Cold Open of Slayers Premium. While she has always had a short temper, though, later anime productions flanderize it.
  • Hiro Sohma from Fruits Basket is a particularly obnoxious version, made even more irritating by his monotone delivery. Gullible Tohru falls over herself trying to appease him, while most viewers quietly harbor a desire to hit the little brat with something heavy.
    • "Black Haru", laid-back Hatsuharu Sohma's hostile split personality, has shown signs of this trope as well, deliberately misconstruing Tohru and the student council's president (though the latter probably deserved it).
  • Dilandau Albatou from Vision of Escaflowne seems to be a combination between Hair Trigger Temper and a Psycho for Hire.
  • Ryoga from Ranma can often be this way if he ever finds someone insulting Akane.
    Ryoga: "NO MAN SHALL INSULT AKANE'S LEGS!"
    • Akane Tendo can sometimes come off as this around Ranma Saotome, mainly in the earlier parts of the anime and manga. At least one Dark Fic makes a decent argument for it being all-out Intermittent Explosive Disorder.
  • Daigo Ikari from Eyeshield 21 will always get angry when someone mentioned Ojou High School or White Knights (the football team) in bad light; the problem is that every time he hears anything, he always quick to assume the worst.
    • This leads to a running gag that Ikari never actually gets to play in a game until the second time Oujou plays Daimon, at least a dozen games into their season. The reason is because he always attacks someone and gets himself ejected before the game even starts. His teammates try to prevent this by binding him with chains. It doesn't work.
    • A giveaway is the fact that his surname is a homophone for the Japanese word for anger.
  • Switzerland and South Italy of Axis Powers Hetalia. So, so much.
    • Bulgaria was believed to be one as well, but this was later Jossed.
    • Belarus as well, to the point of attacking Denmark for making a small comment about how he'd win the costume contest, because it implied that he thought he could beat her darling Russia.
    • England definitely counts, too. This becomes more apparent when France or America is around.
  • Sousuke from Full Metal Panic! can get this way towards people, mostly if it seems to him like the person is "threatening the wellbeing of" Kaname. Even the most mundane, normal things that people say or do can be misconstrued by him as being a dangerous "threat" that must be eliminated. Justified in that he was raised by the KGB, with a highly suspicious, Crazy Survivalist nature.
  • Heiwajima Shizuo of Durarara!! has a hair-trigger temper and monstrous strength to go along with it. However, he's aware and ashamed of his violent habits and wants to get "strong enough" to keep a lid on them.
  • Naru and Motoko from Love Hina start off with this trope, going Up to Eleven in the anime, though this happens less often once Keitaro manages to eventually win them over.
  • Buggy the Clown of One Piece is an interesting variation, where there is only one thing that sets him off: Mentioning his red nose. However, he seems to be a bit hard of hearing, and tends to interpret anything you say as an insult to his nose, meaning he effectively has a Hair-Trigger Temper.
    • Eustass Kid, to a degree than anything that so much as irritates him can set him off. His Ax-Crazy disposition is balanced out by his far more level-headed subordinate Killer.
  • Shinobu of Junjou Romantica often misinterprets even the slightest of things and becomes irrationally angry over them. The fact that he knows he's smarter than everyone else only makes this more apparent.
  • Grineed from Beet the Vandel Buster goes berserk when he's addressed in a casual manner. "Dude, calm down" will make him blow a crater in the ground with the sheer force of his trembling with rage. He constantly soaks himself in sedative resin, because he knows that sort of thing is "Not OK", no matter who you are.
  • Manabizaki, the main character of SWOT, always seems angry and annoyed. He gets pissed at anything he deems which interrupts his study time (which happens a lot), and has a tendency to fly into a rage at the slightest provocation. The fact that his school is filled with delinquents doesn't help.
  • Maho from Wandering Son gets mad at everything. Saori is a more mild case, and has tried to change.
  • Mio from Nichijou has a tendency to get angry whenever Yuuko or her sister, Yoshino, are around. When she gets angry, she gets angry.
  • Inuyasha: Inuyasha and Sesshoumaru are far more Not So Different than either of them will admit. This includes the short fuse that lights their tempers. Inuyasha is openly grumpy, with a base state of "mildly irritated". This flares up into angry on a regular basis even over trivial things. Sesshoumaru, on the other hand, will flit between The Stoic and Tranquil Fury, although it would be a mistake to think his temper is more muted than Inuyasha since Sesshoumaru's anger tends to be more lethal than Inuyasha's. Toutousai once lampshades this by observing that their identical short tempers makes it very easy to see that they're brothers.
  • Yanagin in Daily Lives of High School Boys maybe a Distaff Counterpart to Hidenori in that they're both bookish, Genre Savvy and a bit of a Big Ham—what's different is Yanagin has a hair-trigger temper (and punches out Ikushima a lot in the process).
  • Hot Scientist and Knight Templar Big Brother Souichi Tatsumi from the Boys Love manga Challengers and The Tyrant Falls in Love had viewed every action of his Straight Gay lab assistant as a transparent attempt to get him into bed from his Anguished Declaration of Love onwards. His suspicions weren't entirely unfounded, but on the whole Morinaga suffers the brunt of his anger unnecessarily. His overprotective and homophobic traits also cause his little brother's boyfriend, Kurokawa, to suffer greatly - on hearing the news that Tomoe's married him in Los Angeles, he threatens to fly over there to murder Kurokawa and single-handedly take down the USA for being so "perverted" as to allow gays to marry in the first place. And it's all Played for Laughs.
  • Sakura of Naruto can get like this at times due to her fiery Tsundere persona.
    • Tsunade will think nothing of pounding your face in if she gets pissed off.
    • Kakuzu is stated to have one, although it's more of an Informed Flaw
  • Edward Elric from Fullmetal Alchemist gets angry at loads of things, from people calling him short to being told to drink milk. He gets better as the series goes on, though.
    • His master Izumi Curtis, who will throw the Elric brothers into walls at the drop of a hat.
  • Knuckles The Echidna from Sonic X will constantly get extremely angry when someone insults him or makes a sarcastic remark. Mostly, Sonic and Rouge does the button pushing a whole lot. The game continuity downplay this, however.
  • Tomoe from Kamisama Kiss is in many ways an Expy of InuYasha and like him Tomoe is openly grumpy all the time, has a face that always seems to be set to a "mildly irritated" expression and he tends to go ballistic over minor things.
  • Hell's Chef from Gregory Horror Show. You insult his culinary skills? He'll haunt you. You aren't appreciating his dishes (even if it's because you aren't hungry)? He'll haunt you. Smoking on his watch? RUN.
  • The Nitro from Toriko are one of the more dangerous species in the setting, which is a bonafide Death World, because of an unholy combination of vast strength, intelligence, voracity, and very short and violent tempers. They were called "Nitro" because they have temperaments akin to nitroglycerine. Even the Taste Hermit Chichi, a presumably friendly Nitro who is able and willing to speak to humans, has a pretty short temper.

     Comic Books 
  • Tina the technical writer in Dilbert, who "regards every conversation within her hearing distance as an insult to her occupation and gender." She's lightened up considerably in recent years, though.
  • There is absolutely no way of knowing whether saying something to The Joker will result in him laughing or killing you, horribly and violently. Or doing both.
    • Though arguably, that's because the Joker is Ax-Crazy rather than having a Hair-Trigger Temper.
    • You're on slightly safer ground with Marx Brothers quotes.
      • Last year, Robin escaped the Joker by deliberately mis-identifying the source of just such a quote; the Joker thought it was more important to argue and convince him he was wrong than to just go ahead and kill him, which was the whole reason he'd captured him in the first place.
  • Superboy-Prime, while a moron, is terrifying because he will fly off the handle and start trying to destroy everything in sight at the slightest provocation. The reason this is terrifying is because he's as strong as Silver Age Superman.
  • In G.I. Joe, bomb specialist Short Fuze's codename doesn't come from his explosive expertise, but his explosive temper.
  • Johnny C, from Johnny the Homicidal Maniac. In addition to being Ax-Crazy, Johnny has killed dozens of people for one person's poor choice of words. He's wacky like that.
    • Great, now you're dead.
  • Mustafa / "Staffie" from Mingamanga.
  • Honestly, The Incredible Hulk should be the poster boy for this trope. His entire existence basically hinges on this entire concept, and even if you do manage to get him to a calm state, he often assumes that someone is stealth insulting him or trying to to tell him what to do, which either causes him to leave in a huff or just attempt to smash your ass.
  • Namor the Sub-mariner.
  • Monica from Brazilian comic Monica's Gang. Just a slight provocation might earn a plush bunny beating.
  • In the German comic Werner: The "Prsi" (president) of the local biker club.
  • This is the defining trait of Blowtop in Dick Tracy.
  • The Far Side had a lot of cartoons like this. For instance, one early strip showed an angry man holding a smoking shotgun, having killed two people with it, while his wife behind him angrily says, "That settles it, Carl! From now on, you're only getting decaffeinated coffee!"

    Fan Fic 

  • Barricade from Transformers Meta possesses this.
    • For example, he doesn't hesitate to scream at his commander whenever he disagrees with him.
    • You can find him standing in corners, glaring at whoever's around him.
    • He openly admits that he hates everybody.
  • Kaji, of the Dragon Ball Z fanfiction Honor Trip. His default personality is annoyed, and his moods only get less friendly. Of course, he has to constantly deal with Hufeh's shenanigans, which would test anyone's patience.

  • In the Tamers Forever Series, it is very easy to piss off Rika.
    Takato: I thought you were mad at me?
    Rika: Do you think I'm the kind of person who gets mad at silly things like that?
    Takato: Ummm�
    Ruki: Ladies and Gentlemen, we have a dilemma here!
    Takato: Ah�Rika, do you want the right answer or the nice answer?
    *THWACK!!*
    Takato: "Ow!"
    • As the Avatar of Wrath, Jeri makes Rika look like a pacifist in comparison.
  • Absolutely everyone in Knowledge is Power flies off the handle at the slightest provocation. The only real difference between the heroes and the villains is that the former get away with it and the latter just shoot themselves in the foot.
  • Weird Incident Shit: Problem Sleuth can tell that Reimu Hakurei has one.
    • He's right- if you try to challenge her to a fight, you get a Bad End.

    Film 
  • Joe Pesci specialized in playing this type, mostly through his work with Martin Scorsese. In fact, the trope was once named "The Pesci". In Real Life, though, Pesci is a sterling example of Mean Character, Nice Actor.
    • The biggest inspiration for the trope is Tommy DeVito from Goodfellas, who has a vicious temper borne from a need to prove he's the world's biggest badass, and can snap at the slightest provocation. His usual recourse against an insult to his person is to murder the offender, regardless of whether they are a lowly busboy or a mob boss. His instability ultimately causes problems for him later in his career. Interestingly, DeVito is very aware of his reputation. In one scene, he feigns offense at a harmless compliment to toy with his friends. The hardened gangsters not only believe that his rage is real, but they're terrified of him. Tommy's temper and instability eventually get him killed when he kills a made man, which you do NOT do in the mob without a sitdown and an okay from the boss.
    • Nicky Santoro in Casino is a subversion; he is less capricious and unruly than Tommy DeVito, being unlikely to kill on a whim, but is shown using extreme violence in a much more calculated fashion. Also, Nicky shows a bit more respect for his friends than Tommy would. He even gets a Pet the Dog moment with his son and another where he gives money to one of his mooks to help support his kids after the mook gambled all his money away. While Tommy has a raging Inferiority Superiority Complex driving his violence, Nicky has no such problem with his self esteem and uses violence to gain money and maintain power.
    • Pesci's earliest example is Joey LaMotta in Raging Bull. LaMotta spends most of the movie getting bullied by his big brother, but takes the time to have at least one Pesci freak-out.
    • In JFK, Pesci plays an ex-CIA agent named David Ferrie who is so paranoid about the government agents who are going to kill him if anyone starts poking around JFK's assassination, that Garrison's mere hint that he wants to talk to Ferrie about something private throws Ferrie into a psychotically paranoid panic that renders him incapable of doing anything but drop the F-Bomb.
    • Pesci's character from 8 Heads In A Duffel Bag is basically a more subdued version Tommy from Goodfellas - who has all the hair trigger of the other character but is smart enough to know that shooting everything in sight just because it's annoying him is a bad idea - he makes do by making very sincere promises to kill everyone later instead. In the end, however, he decides against it.
    • And of course, there's Leo Getz's penchant for the epic Cluster F-Bomb in the Lethal Weapon series.
    • Pesci's character Harry in the first two Home Alone movies probably also counts, though his outbursts consist of mutterings of "ratcha fratcha" instead of intelligible profanities.
  • Yao from Mulan.
  • Don Logan from Sexy Beast is described by actor Ben Kingsley as the unhappiest man in the world, Logan is clearly hated even by his friends and colleagues. Upon arriving in Spain, he is given a cold and awkward reception by his old friends, who are clearly terrified of him. Once they go against his wishes, however, he launches into a nearly unending tirade of abuse and self-pity, painting their every action is a personal affront to him. After he is ultimately killed, his boss doesn't even bother taking revenge for the murder, since he didn't like him.
  • Annie Wilkes from the film Misery is a frightening and demented example of a woman with a Hair-Trigger Temper turned Up to Eleven, all the way to Ax-Crazy Stalker with a Crush. The 'hobbling' scene gives testament to this, and even throws in a Why Did You Make Me Hit You?.
  • Francis Begbie from Trainspotting. He picks fights for disturbingly minor provocations, including one incident where he blamed a man eating chips of spoiling his pool shot. However, Begbie also intentionally provokes fights for no other reason than that he's addicted to violence and mayhem. In the book, Begbie is described as a large and imposing man, but director Danny Boyle decided to imply a Napoleon Complex by casting the fairly short Robert Carlyle.
  • Albert Spica from The Cook, the Thief, His Wife Her Lover. He holds court at his swanky restaurant every night, pretending to be sophisticated while he threatens and assaults anyone who even slightly annoys him. This is made more gruesome by the fact that he tends to force-feed his victims inedible objects.
  • Cody Jarett from White Heat is another iconic example of a Hair Trigger Temper.
  • Captain Byron Hadley from The Shawshank Redemption is an angry, amoral man who constantly swears and attacks people in almost every scene that he is in. In the beginning of the film, he brutally beats a prisoner to death simply for crying because it was his first night in prison. He ultimately reveals himself as a coward by "sobbing like a little girl" when he's finally brought to justice and sent to Shawshank as an inmate; it's not at all hard to understand why.
  • Doyle Hargrave in Sling Blade. Luckily, he gets his comeuppance at the end of the film. Mm-hmm.
  • Kevin "O-Dog" from Menace II Society. Imagine a black, slightly more trigger-happy version of Tommy DeVito from Goodfellas and you have O-Dog. In opening scene, O-Dog and the main character are in a liquor store and suspiciously watched by the proprietors. After they pay for their drinks, which they have already started drinking, the cashier tells O-Dog that he pities his mother. O-Dog responds by killing him and his wife and stealing the surveillance tape, which he proudly plays for his friends.
  • Conspiracy Brother in Undercover Brother flies off on overly-paranoid, outraged (and often absurdly ill-informed) The Man-is-keeping-me-down rants on the flimsiest of provocations. Even someone cheerfully saying "Hi, Conspiracy Brother!" in greeting is guaranteed to send him spiraling off into a rant about how everyone assumes that black people spend all their time getting high.
    "Brother, when you get a minute, could I get a list of the words that trigger these fits?"
    • Conspiracy Brother doth protest too much. He actually does spend a lot of his time smoking pot. His paranoia is in no small amount due to this.
  • Walter Sobchak (John Goodman) in The Big Lebowski is an unbalanced ex-Vietnam soldier with serious rage issues who will pull a gun over a bowling league dispute.
    • Interestingly, among the cut scenes was a discussion revealing that Walter was never actually in 'Nam; his habit of bringing it up is just a shallow attempt to excuse his own issues since the number of people likely to actually contest that point in the face of Walter losing his shit is almost nil (basically just Jeff Lebowski).
  • In the film Primal Fear, a plot point is that Aaron Stampler, a stuttering boy accused of brutally murdering an abusive archbishop, when under enough stress, switches into another sociopathic persona named Roy, a textbook example of this trope. At the very end of the movie, it's revealed that Aaron not only murdered the archbishop and another girl, but he had made up the Aaron personality to win the case, establishing himself as a Manipulative Bastard.
  • Amon Gth in Schindler's List. Truth in Television.
  • Harvey Keitel as Feraud in The Duelists.
  • Robert Downey, Jr. in Due Date, whose character's outburst gets him kicked off the plane and placed on the "no-fly" list, kicking off the movie plot. His wife even mentions his temper.
  • Tugger from Brick is high-class muscle and the second in command of "The Pin". His tendency to fly into a blind rage at the slightest provocation makes him more trouble than he's worth, however, and causes numerous serious problems throughout the movie.
  • Cherish (Alicia Witt) in Cecil B. Demented: always seems to be either horny, pissed off, or both; at one point, shoots up a popcorn machine because the popcorn is cooked in coconut oil.
  • Frank Booth from Blue Velvet takes this trope to truly disturbing levels. He'll get extremely angry and start yelling and cussing (although he does that pretty much all of the time away), if not get outright violent over even the slightest thing he deems out-of-tune, such as looking at him or not, or not bringing him his beer right away. This alone makes him an extremely unsettling and terrifying individual to deal with.
  • In Pain and Gain both Daniel and Paul snap at things that seem very insignificant in hindsight. Paul regrets this, while Daniel seems to embrace it. It seems a lot like typical steroid aggression.

    Gamebooks 
  • The Serpent Queen � a woman with a serpent for a head � from the Fighting Fantasy gamebooks possesses such a temper, having murdered a number of the retainers provided to her by Azzur, the lord of Port Blacksand.

    Literature 
  • In the 1988 children's literature book Matilda there is Miss Trunchbull.
  • The Hagakure, a 18th century Japanese treatise on samurai and their virtues, suggests Hair-Trigger Temper as highly commendable lifestyle for samurai.
  • A character known only as The Kid from the extended edition of Stephen King's The Stand. He starts out with fairly clear Berserk Buttons, which the Trashcan Man avoids setting off to survive, but his insanity becomes more apparent as the story goes on. It's clear that, if he hadn't been killed, he would have found an excuse to kill the Trashcan Man no matter what he did.
  • Francis Begbie in Trainspotting. In the book version, Renton clearly outlines a number of Begbie's fantasies that his friends must indulge for their own safety. He says, "The trick was tae discreetly indulge him, without being seen as an obvious crawling suck-up." Begbie gets worse in the sequel, Porno, when he sees a "beast" (paedophile) in a pub, and proceeds to beat him to death. Spud also attempts to claim life insurance money for his family by getting Begbie to do the same to him.
  • Hotspur in the Flora Segunda novels. Among other things, he came this close to shooting the Warlord for groping Flora.
  • Anita Blake. She regularly has to clamp down on her "seething emotions"- even if it's because someone has pointed out a *gasp* possible flaw in her plan.
  • The Gillian Key books are full of this- she's a v. grumpy lady.
  • Harry Potter, but only in Order of the Phoenix. Fans refer to Harry in this book as "CAPSLOCK!Harry", for reasons obvious to those who have read it.
  • Opal Koboi from Artemis Fowl is as bad as Voldemort in this department. Her mood-swings will give you whiplash.
  • From A Song of Ice and Fire, the Mountain, Ser Gregor Clegane, snaps at the slightest provocation or perceived insult, and being over seven feet tall and wielding a greatsword one handed, carnage generally ensues. When he loses a jousting tournament due to a misbehaving horse, he decapitates said horse in a blind rage and attacks his celebrating opponent (and his own brother when he attempts to break up the attack), only stopping when ordered to by the King. This is only a mild example.
    • He is given SOMETHING of an excuse in the suggestion that he constantly suffers from unfathomably painful migraine headaches (perhaps due to whatever twist of genetics made him so big and strong), to the point where he constantly has to imbibe the in-universe painkiller 'Milk of the poppy'. Doesn't make him any less dangerous, though.
  • In The Dresden Files, Harry develops one of these after the events of Death Masks. As the series progresses he gets easier and easier to anger, reaching a point where an outburst of stubbornness from his apprentice results in him blowing up a trashcan with a bolt of fire in sheer frustration. He eventually realizes that this is because of Lasciel's influence on his mind.
    • Lasciel later vacates his brain, only to be replaced by the Winter Mantle, which is even worse.
  • Sisterhood Series by Fern Michaels: Kathryn Lucas and Maggie Spritzer sure have these kinds of tempers. Their friends can only live with it.
  • Visser Three in Animorphs. All the time.
  • Vlad "The Impaler" in Count and Countess.
  • Chauntecleer in The Book of the Dun Cow is a heroic example, his short temper making him Vitriolic Best Buds with the self-hating but extremely loyal Mundo Cani Dog, who he uses as a doormat and insults creatively. It also makes him prone to especially bad HeroicBSODs. He is also devoted to his wife Pertelote and his three sons.
  • Skulduggery Pleasant, although it tends to be Tranquil Fury in his case.
  • Prakash from Kill Decision has this.
  • Captain Zuccho from Incompetence. He especially dislikes the suggestion that he try to calm down.

     Live-Action TV 
  • The Amanda Show: Misty Raines from the Show Within a Show, "Moody's Point." "You're so hurtful!"
  • The Amazing Race:
    • Manipulative Editing and the stressful nature will make it seem like several racers a season have one of these, but Season 14's Jaime Faith Edmondson, above all others, was infamous for going from calm to a rampaging monster at the drop of a hat.
    • Jonathan from season six also became infamous for it, to the point that pretty much all the viewers were genuinely concerned that he was physically abusive to his wife and teammate, and the two received a talking-to from Dr. Phil after the season ended.
  • Battlestar Galactica (Reimagined): Saul Tigh. Kara Thrace is just as bad which results in quite a tempestuous relationship between the two. It doesn't help that they're both alkies.
  • Boardwalk Empire: Gyp Rosetti will kill anyone who insults him. Or who he imagines insulted him. Or anyone who happens to be close by when he's in a bad mood. Combined with his penchant for Disproportionate Retribution, it makes him very dangerous. His temper results in a mob war between himself and Nucky Thompson.
  • Breaking Bad: Had Tuco, an extremely volatile and paranoid drug dealer who actually takes a liking to Walther because Walther has the balls to stand up to Tuco and demands that Tuco deals fairly with him. At their first drug deal Tuco kills one of his own bodyguards for a petty reason and Walther and Jessie realize that it is only a matter of time before Tuco kills them over something equally petty.
  • Community: Chang flies off the handle with little or no provocation.
  • Curb Your Enthusiasm: Susie Greene, in spades. Usually combined with Cluster F-Bomb.
  • Doctor Who: Nord, Vandal of the Roads, from the serial The Greatest Show in the Galaxy. Any offer of help is met with threats, as is any request for assistance.
  • Drake & Josh: Crazy Steve:
    • YOU TOOK MY ENCHILADAAAAAAAAAAA!!!
    Josh: You hired a guy named Crazy Steve?
  • ER: Dr. Anna Del Amico, who tended to react to every single thing Doug said or did as either a sexist putdown or a comeon. To the point where he could not even call her by her first name without her going on a tear about how he was being chauvinist and patronizing.
  • Family Ties: In the episode "I Never Killed For My Father" from the first season, Steven dreads that his father is coming to visit - so he tries to make a list of "safe" topics to discuss. As it turns out, though, there is no "safe" topic. When he lets his father have it at the end, then the two of them manage to reconcile.
  • Freaks and Geeks: Kim Kelly was so sensitive that saying anything to her could strike a nerve and turn her hostile. Her boyfriend Daniel once suggested that she be rational about something, to which she replied, in a hair-trigger fashion: "Are you calling me irrational? Because I'll tear your head off, Daniel. I'll tear it off and I'll throw it over that fence."
  • Hells Kitchen: Gordon Ramsey. He mostly plays it up because people expect it, but things like disrespect and laziness really do set him off. You get a better feel for his real personality in his British TV shows or the version of Master Chef with children.
  • The Honeymooners:
    • Ralph Kramden is practically volcanic, especially when things don't go his way. He is especially like this towards Alice and Ed Norton, and also towards his mother-in-law. A couple of examples:
    • When he overhears his mother-in-law tell Alice the "surprise ending" of a murder mystery, that it wasn't the uncle, but the husband, who committed the murder, Ralph shouts at her, "You are a BLABBERMOUTH!!!!!!!"
    • {when Ralph and Norton are spending the night together}
    Ed Norton: Ralph, are you sure you don't want a kumquat?
    Ralph Kramden: WILL YOU GO TO SLEEP!
  • The Inspector Lynley Mysteries: DS Barbara Havers, particularly in the early days. In the pilot, "A Great Deliverance", pretty much every other sentence out of Lynley's mouth enrages her for some reason or other. Occasionally, those reasons are even valid. She mellows out over time:
    Lynley: The woman is a minefield!
  • Merlin: King Uther.
  • Oz: Many a character but especially Claire Howell.
  • Pizza: Everyone, as is standard for Australians. Especially Ronnie Mc Doggle (credit as 'Ronny Mc Donny') from Freaky Pizza.
  • Revolution: "Sex and Drugs" introduces Drexel, a drug lord with this sort of temper. The sight of Miles Matheson showing up on his property makes him angry. Remembering how Miles betraying Monroe sullied Drexel's reputation makes him angry. His poppy fields, which is uses to make heroin, being burned makes him angry. The fact that the people who burned his poppy fields are a family of Irish cops makes him angry. Aaron looking at him funny makes him angry. Miles running off to stop Charlie Matheson from making a big mistake makes him angry. In short, just about everything makes him angry.
  • Saturday Night Live:
    • The host of the "Joe Pesci Show" sketches (played by Jim Bruer) regularly beats his guests with a baseball bat and most sketches end with him attacking the camera.
    • The real Joe Pesci and Robert De Niro show up in one episode and beat their impersonators senseless, and Frank Sinatra (not the real one) had his bodyguards give Joe a good working over.
  • Saxondale: Each episode opens with the titular character attending his prescribed anger management classes. They don't work very well.
  • Scrubs:
    • The Janitor warps every word that comes out of J.D's mouth into justification for making the doctor's life a living hell. After spending an eternity trying to placate the Manipulative Bastard, J.D eventually gives up and tries to beat the Janitor at his own game. It's rare that he succeeds.
    • Dr. Cox and Jordan also get the Hair-Trigger Temper when the plot demands it. Carla also seems to have played this role at least once per episode since she and Turk got engaged. In fact, most of the Scrubs characters adopt this trope temporarily at some point.
  • Seinfeld: The doorman, the Soup Nazi, and Frank Costanza.
  • The Thick of It: Malcolm Tucker and Jamie McDonald are both possessors of very, very short fuses for anger.
  • The West Wing: Toby Ziegler. Case in point: Margaret runs away from him in fear of his sanity when one day, in an unnaturally good mood, he tells her to "let a smile be your umbrella."
  • Whose Line Is It Anyway?: Once parodied this with a game called "What Are You Trying to Say?" where Colin Mochrie and Ryan Stiles played two people with hair trigger tempers taking each other's comments the wrong way.
  • The Young and the Restless and The Bold And The Beautiful Crossover: Sheila Carter could easily take naming rights of this trope home. "What are you. nuts?" "Bitch, I will snap you like a twig. NOBODY MESSES WITH ME, NOBODY!"

    Multiple Media 

    Music 
  • "I threw it on the ground!"
  • On Tenacious D's first album, there was a bit where JB karate chops KG for eating his schnitzel. He also loses it and tells KG he's fired for saying that 'inward singing' isn't completely non-stop.
  • Morrisey, full-stop. The man hates everything.
  • Eminem drops many a Cluster F-Bomb.
    • Eminem has named his daughter as a particular hair trigger - during their feud, Benzino threatened Hailie's life in a song. Which made things SO MUCH WORSE.
    • Or, go ahead. Ask him about either of his parents. (Though given that 'angry Eminem' has subsided, this may no longer be the case.)
  • Pete Townshend was known for frequent and intense bouts of anger when recording with The Who, which fortunately receded just quickly enough to keep everyone from hating him (he was a perfectionist).

    Pinball 

     Tabletop Games 
  • This is the clan weakness for the Brujah in Vampire: The Masquerade. As passionate warrior-philosophers turned modern rabble, they have a rather difficult time resisting Frenzy compared to the other clans.
  • The "Bad Temper" disadvantage in GURPS is this in a nutshell. Your character's stressed? Make a Will roll to not lash out at or even physically assault somebody convenient. ("Berserk" is explicitly the next worse form of this and the two can't both be taken together for that reason.)

    Theatre 
  • In Jean Kerr's parody of Mike Hammer, "Don Brown's Body" (originally staged as a revue sketch and published in Please Don't Eat the Daisies), Mike maims random strangers for doing things like asking him the time of day. "Like I say—I don't take slop from nobody."
  • Katerina from The Taming of the Shrew is an iconic example. Petruchio solves her problem by feigning it himself, thereby giving her a taste of her own medicine.
  • Othello has one of these. Exploited relentlessly by Iago.
  • Hamlet as well.

     Video Games 
  • Wigglers from the Super Mario games are cute, giant caterpillars with flowers on their heads. If you jump on them note , they'll get enraged and move faster.
  • In a similar vein, the Scarfies from the Kirby games. At first, they're floating puppy heads, but if Kirby tries to eat one, they'll turn into scary cyclops hell-hounds that will chase him until they explode.
  • In the first Dungeon Keeper game, the Horned Reaper. When he gets annoyed he'll go berserk and start killing everything in sight. These are a few things that annoy him: Asking him to train. Asking him to work. Asking him to study. Asking him to live with other people. Not feeding him promptly. Not paying him promptly. Allowing him to pray, something that's supposed to make creatures happier. Leaving him on his own to do nothing. It helps if you drop gold on him at regular intervals.
  • It's an Informed Ability, given that we never see it happen, but Prosecutor Byrne Faraday in Ace Attorney could apparently get very nasty when he got angry over things as small as a detective showing up late to work. In fact, Prosecutor Faraday blowing up at him and docking his pay is the motive Gumshoe is assigned when he's accused of killing him. Yes, that Gumshoe.
    • Victor Kudo will use any excuse to throw seeds at people.
  • The Demoman from Team Fortress 2 has one, at least when he's drunk.
  • In the Pokmon game series, there is a Fighting-type pig monkey Pokmon called Primeape. The species as a whole will lose their temper as a response to anything and will chase the cause of their anger until they catch it and beat it bloody.
  • Seems to affect veteran players of competitive team based video games. MOBA games like Heroes of Newerth and League of Legends have a notoriously bad community. If you are unlucky, every visible mistake you make results in a barrage of "retard" and "nooooob" all the way to "kill yourself irl" from your teammates, and god have mercy on you if you tell your team it is your first game...
  • Mitsunari the Dark King is pretty moody at the best of times, but enforces the death sentence for every "crime" he encounters, such as, for instance, telling him "no".
  • Jack in Mass Effect 2, and although in most situations according to the backstory she would tear any poor bastard apart for almost any perceived or real slight against her, she luckily keeps to shouting aboard the Normandy.
  • Vass in Far Cry 3 has a temper that turns on a dime from "friendly and kooky" to "insane murderous rage" and back again, often during the same conversation. The fact he's the leader of a vicious group of murderers and people-smugglers doesn't really improve his victim's chances any.
  • Kratos from the God of War games emotional range tends to be various states of anger. The only exceptions being rare moments of reflection or moments with his family. In flashbacks before any of the games he would fly into rages that scared his daughter and only his wife was willing to stand up to. Anything that irks him or does not immediately go his way switches him to barely controlled rage at best.

     Web Animation 
  • Many flash cartoons feature mass fighting where characters can be provoked even by bumping into them.
  • Paul Hammerbro from Bowser's Kingdom is notorious for having this. Just don't dent his winged platform or do anything to upset him.
  • A literal case for Yang Xiao Long in RWBY. So much as slicing a strand is enough to warrant a greater beating than she would normally deliver.

     Web Comics 
  • Homestuck: Karkat Vantas tries to come off as the living embodiment of this trope, and he's certainly it verbally... physically, not so much. Also, most of his temperamentality is directed at himself.
  • Waterworks: Connie, the protagonist, gets angry rather easily... usually with destructive results; as it turns out, this is pretty much the main reason she has barely any friends, let alone a boyfriend.
  • The Senkari: Freija, though she claims early on she can control her temper, frequently suffers from rather monumental fits of rage, often combined with physical violence.
  • Warrick of Namesake has this ever since he removed his heart.
  • Marissa of Sturgeon's Law has problems dealing with her anger constructively.

     Web Original 
  • Sean Malstrom has been known to belittle entire gaming sites in his blog merely because several people in the comments section made offhanded jabs at him. Case in point: a single guy at GoNintendo named Garfitor says "Don't worry Darth Vader, Malstrom and his followers are still gonna hate [Metroid: Other M]." This is how Malstrom responded. Said GoNintendo guy found Malstrom's response funny. This is Malstrom's response to THAT comment.
  • Ghost from Radio Grafitti is so, SO this trope, in internet radio form. Almost every Troll that calls him manages to set him off, not to mention anything that isn't capitalism. Doesn't help that he has tons of Berserk Buttons.
  • Tales of MU:
  • This video portraying a guy who not only goes off like he's possessed because his World of Warcraft account is cancelled, but because he is losing a game in another video.
    • There are loads of other videos showing him throwing various other temper tantrums over silly things. One particularly egregious example is when he's auditioning for a company's advertisement and the director happens to use the word "gay" in a sentence while coincidentally gesticulating towards the kid. Cue a HUGE temper outburst, "HE POINTED AT ME WHEN HE SAID GAY!" and breaking everything in the room.
  • The infamous Halo 2 video "Croyt's Anger". Among others, he loses it when he gets taken out just after getting a triple kill(even though he's been getting shot the whole time), and the heavens themselves tremble when he gets standbyed.
  • How has The Angry Video Game Nerd not been mentioned yet? Anger is literally part of his name!
  • Several important characters in Worm have temper issues:
    • Danny Hebert, the protagonist's father, has a violent temper that he keeps tightly in check; his father didn't, and he doesn't want to be like him.
    • Bitch is an obvious example, being easily angered and quick to get physical; interestingly, this is mostly a adaptation she uses because she can't read social cues, like sarcasm.
    • Shadow Stalker also has a violent temper, both in costume and in her civilian identity.
  • Achievement Hunter's Michael has a tendency to get very riled up while playing video games (and even has his own series entitled 'Rage Quit'), which can very easily deteriorate into this trope — but other than that he's a perfectly nice guy.
  • Yang Xiao Long from Web Animation/RWBY has a literal Hair-Trigger Temper. As in, she goes nuts when so much as a strand is messed with. Only in that sense though.

     Western Animation 
  • Pesto the pigeon from the "Goodfeathers" segment of Animaniacs is based on the Tommy character played by Joe Pesci, above. He aims his outbursts mostly at Squit, who never quite figures out that calling Pesto anything results in his getting beat up. In another case, Pesto has lost his sister's egg, and Bobby reassures him that they'll get it back. Squit agrees with Bobby. Pesto smacks Squit. What'd he do? "Nothing. I just felt like smackin' somebody." (His voice actor was not Joe Pesci, just Chick Vennera doing a damned good Pesci impression.)
    • Taken to an absolute extreme with Katie Kaboom. Imagine the kind of creature that The Hulk would think needs to calm down, or run away from because her transformations are too freaky. That's our Katie.
  • Anthony De Martino from Daria.
    • Ms. Janet Barch could also be a similar example.
  • Coach Buzzcut from Beavis And Butthead.
  • Denzel Crocker, from Fairly OddParents. Even discounting his fairy-triggered Berserk Button, there is nothing you can say to this guy without him going crazy.
    • "If they survive this, then they're FAIRIES! If they don't, I HAVE TENURE!"
      • Of course, HE survived that too. That must mean...HE'S A FAIRY!
      • "Hmm, you're right. HAVE A NICE DAY!!!" *Twitch*
  • As a result of drastic Not as You Know Them treatment, the formerly sanguine Silverbolt starts showing a surly hair trigger temper in Transformers Beast Machines. Particularly whenever Blackarachnia speaks to him. Explosive outbursts are rare, but he still takes exception to nearly everything.
    • Then there are G1 characters Afterburner, Rampage, and Slugfest. Afterburner displays dizzying heights of hysteric anger and rage at the most innocuous comment (though he's always angry, he tends to need some "setting off" for it to show all that strongly); Rampage is angry all the time except while watching television; and Slugfest, being both stupid and paranoid, is too dim to know when someone isn't making fun of him and just always reacts with aggression to everything.
      • Also in G1, Galvatron often exhibits this.
  • Cotton Hill, from King of the Hill.
  • Futurama's bit character Roberto has a hair trigger with a hair trigger:
    Roberto: "I'm thinking of a number between one and ten, guess it, I kill ya!"
    Bender: "Er, 56... ish"
    Roberto: "56? 56?! That's all I can think about! I'm gonna kill you you lousy 56ing..."
    • Windmills do not work that way!!!
    • Malfunctioning Eddie is this. He literally explodes from even the slightest amount of shock or surprise. It doesn't even have to be anger; in "Insane in the Mainframe", when he introduces himself to Fry, Fry responds "We've met before", causing Eddie to scream "WHAT?!" and explode on him.
  • Homer Simpson is a rageaholic. He can't live without rageahol.
  • Donald Duck, naturally.
    • Perhaps more so Daisy, Donald is at least usually cranky on a consistant basis. Daisy on the other hand can go from polite and kindly to ten times as violent, sometimes for even pettier reasons than Donald.
  • Heloise and Lucius from Jimmy Two-Shoes.
  • The Earl of Lemongrab from Adventure Time. Being the angry, screaming result of a science experiment gone horribly wrong, he has quite a few issues to sort out.
  • The titular Ren from The Ren & Stimpy Show.
  • LEMME TELL YA SOMETHIN', TV TROPES. RATH IS MAD YOU DIDN'T PUT RATH ON HERE ALREADY.
  • Batman: Under the Red Hood has Black Mask, who seems to have two temper settings. Mad, and punch all my henchmen mad. Almost all of his scenes consist of him yelling angrily. An odd exception comes near the end. After being betrayed and captured by the Joker, he gives a rather deadpan "Can't. trust. no one.
  • Zuko from Avatar: The Last Airbender has this tendency, especially before his Heel-Face Turn. Quite appropriate for a Hot-Blooded character with fire-based Personality Powers.
  • Nicole, the mother in The Amazing World of Gumball, goes from "sweet, caring mother" to "so angry she punches a hole in the wall" at the drop of a hat.
  • Fuzzy Lumpkins on The Powerpuff Girls is always in a bad mood, but if you really make him mad, he goes berserk and lays has the subtlety of dynamite.
  • Spike the bulldog from Tom and Jerry.
  • Kyle Broflovski from South Park is quite easily pissed off, usually because of something Cartman says or does.
    • His mom is no better.
    • Cartman falls under this trope as well, and the results usually aren't pretty.
  • Yosemite Sam, a song in The Looney Tunes Show is basically about his temper.
  • The Beast of Beauty and the Beast was this initially, eventually after he warms up to Belle he learns to control his temper.
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy: Eddy and Sarah are most definitely this. Doesn't help that Eddy has No Indoor Voice whatsoever.
  • Brian often finds himself triggering this with Quagmire in Family Guy, who takes offense to nearly any comment Brian directs towards him and erupts in a verbal (and sometimes physical) smackdown. Granted this is not a consistent character trait for Quagmire but provoked more from his hatred for Brian and everything he stands for.
    • Joe too even more so he often lashes out with even the slightest provocation and beats even his friends to a bloody pulp, this is rather jarring because in the early episodes he was very friendly and outgoing and he rarely got upset.
  • The titular character on Dan Vs. is this. The slightest thing well set him off. Be it that the ATM charges him 50 cents more than last time causing him to rob a bank, or that Chris won't pick up his phone in the middle of the night to join in on one of his crazy schemes. Most of the times Dan's anger is justified at the end, but even so he will still be set off by minuscule things all the way through, and the fact that the targets of his rage often turn out to deserve it is pretty much a coincidence.
  • Lilo & Stitch: The Series has Nani Flanderized into this.
  • Benson from Regular Show is always on the brink of losing it, especially when dealing with his slacker workforce.
  • Early Cuyler: Mad as hell and twice as drunk.
  • Superboy from Young Justice was grown as a clone and thus has no idea how to control his emotions, resulting in this trope. It's played for some laughs when he goes to school for the first time, and Miss Martian has to constantly stop him from attacking everything. By season 2, he's grown out of it, thanks to being mentored by Superman.
  • Li'l Gideon has one in Gravity Falls.
  • Jake from Mr. Bogus sometimes had this kind of temper.
  • The Flintstones: Fred Flintstone is known for this.

     Real Life 
  • Adolf Hitler was renowned for his rage attacks, once telling his high command "If you all had one neck I would wring it!" He was actually paraphrasing Emperor Caligula, who was himself infamous for his temper.
  • Pikes are extremely aggressive, and are known to attack people on swimming.
  • Klaus Kinski was known for being extremely short-tempered on film sets (as is shown in the documentary My Best Fiend). He once shot a gun at a hut where extras were playing poker, simply because they were making too much noise.
  • The general public, as testified by retail employees. You can't win. They won't let you.
    • Sometimes those employees are the same way, especially with things related to their job. Occasionally a secretary who hears phones ringing all day in their job might snap when they hear a phone anywhere else.
  • Russell Crowe
  • The real Professor John Nash—portrayed by Russell Crowe in A Beautiful Mind—in his younger days before he became schizophrenic. He once stuffed ice cubes down the back of another graduate student to settle an argument and on another occassion crippled another graduate student with a metal ashtray stand because of an insult. The film omits this aspect of Nash's character, which is somewhat ironic with Nash being played by Crowe.
  • Averted with the real Joe Pesci, despite his tendency to play such characters. Most accounts place him as a well-adjusted, pleasant man.
  • Tommy De Simone, the guy Tommy De Vito was based on. The real-life Henry Hill says the performance was "90-95%" accurate, so he really was that batshit crazy. Difference? He was actually much, much bigger — 6`4, 200lbs (and 6 years younger than Hill). Also, he killed two close friends of Gotti (one of them being the character Batts was based on), but the final straw that led to his boss deciding to have him whacked was his Attempted Rape of Karen Hill when her husband was in prison.
  • In the non-fiction book Wiseguy on which the film Goodfellas is based, Henry Hill and author Nicholos Pileggi describe another mobster(who was not portrayed in the film) named Stanley Diamond, who, like Tommy De Simone, had an awful Hair Trigger Temper that terrified even his fellow gangsters. Likewise, Jimmy Burke, the gangster played by Robert De Niro in the film, was toned down for the movie and in reality was nearly as volatile as De Simone and Diamond.
  • Pesci's Casino character was based on Tony Spilotro, suspected of at least 22 murders.
  • Likewise, Benjamin "Bugsy" Siegel was notorious of his violent tantrums and sudden bursts of insane behaviour. His nickname bugsy is another way to say "batshit insane". In the end he was found to be too violent and unreliable even as a mobster, and was murdered by his own men.
  • Every military Drill Instructor, ever. Subverted, in that they're actually trained to do this as part of their job, which simulates high-stress environments and emphasizes ability to react quickly and follow orders. In other words, it's really just a carefully calculated, long-running roleplaying exercise.
  • Yellowjackets. Responsible for more lethal attacks on humans than any other species of wasp, even the nightmarishly-big-acid-spraying Japanese Giant Hornet.
  • On that note, Africanized Killer Bees.
    • In fact, it's been scientifically proven that Killer Bees react to CO2 (carbon dioxide). That means you can set them off just by breathing around them.
    • And while were on the subject of Africa, Cape Buffalo are so bad tempered that among most professional African hunters, they're more feared than lions.
  • Also, a good portion of the male minor nobility in Europe in the 16th and 17th Centuries AD - the ones who were commonly known as "swashbucklers" for their habit of roaming the streets slapping their sword blades against their small shields ("swashing the buckler") spoiling for a fight. As Edwin Tunis related in his book "Weapons" (1954), it was practically impossible to speak to one of these "lads" civilly enough to avoid him challenging you to a duel on the spot.
    • Sydney Anglo, in his book The Martial Arts of Renaissance Europe, noted Renaissance sword-fighting schools emphasized offense over defense, and especially getting the first strike in a fight. Beer and wine were also cheap and readily available in the cities (they were cleaner than the water and Europeans didn't have a lot of other options for mood-altering substances). The combination of the two was pretty lethal.
  • Samurai during the Tokugawa period. The long era of peace left many of the samurai redundant, making them especially irritable, and if ronin, masterless samurai, with nothing left to lose. This made them basically walking powder barrels, as can be attested in The Hagakure.
  • John Milius, director of Conan the Barbarian (1982) and Red Dawn (1984). Was largely the basis for Walter Sobchak. What does that tell ya?
  • Sports coaches and gym teachers in general.
    • Though more often than not, it's the "Hockey Dads" that tend to have this.
  • Certain cases of dementia or social isolation can lead to being an example of this trope.
  • Buddy Rich was notorious for chewing out his bandmates.
  • Andrew Dice Clay - a man who blows his top at the slightest provocation, even at gestures of friendship. The guy takes anything and everything the wrong way. He's a fictional character played by a guy who rarely ever breaks character, sort of like a misanthropic Pee-Wee Herman or Larry the Cable Guy.
    • Andrew actually comes across as a genuinely nice guy out-of-character... but if you interview him and you're NOT Howard Stern, you're probably going to get the character. CNN certainly did.
  • Jim Cornette, Full Stop. Watch any of his RF Video shoot interviews and you see a man who A) believes that he is infallible and has never failed in the world of wrestling, B) cusses with such abandon he would make a sailor blush with shame, and C) Can and will go off at the slightest provocation (although admittedly that is what makes him so darn fun to watch). There is a reason he doesn't work with a major wrestling company.
  • People with bipolar disorder may seem like this when a manic episode occurs.
  • One trait of Borderline Personality Disorder is "inappropriate anger or difficulty controlling anger".
  • The clinical term for this is Intermittent Explosive Disorder
  • James Cameron, by his own admission, has one, which has led to quite a bit of friction on the sets of his movies. The people who worked with him on Avatar say he has mellowed out since such scuffles, though.
    • For example, when it got to the point where he was ready to fire Edward Furlong for forgetting his lines over nervousness about acting alongside Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2, Mali Finn was the only one who was able to rein him in and convince him to give Furlong one more chance. Furlong nailed the scene, hoping to not waste that chance.
  • DMX.
  • Mel Gibson, if those tapes are any indication.
  • Sean Penn.
  • Canada Geese can be vicious.
  • Vanilla Ice. In a way, it's hard to blame him; he's been one of Hip Hop's biggest whipping boys for years. Of course, that doesn't make it any easier to watch his outbursts on The Surreal Life.
  • Adam Carolla. His Loveline and podcast rants have made this an artform.
  • George "Baby Face" Nelson. Such a stark-raving maniac that he scared the crap out of John Dillinger.
  • Old people often have this reputation, as the Screw Politeness, I'm a Senior! trope shows. The early onset of dementia involves people gradually losing their social skills, often manifested by this trope.
  • Chronic pain can cause this. Of course, being in pain at all is enough to make anyone cranky.
  • Toddlers also tend to be like this, especially under the age of 3. This is kind of justified because they're very limited in ways to express themselves.
  • Camels, and indeed some horses, can be like this.
  • Excessive alcohol consumption can induce this. Recovering alcoholics are also often like this when they first quit drinking.
  • People with Narcissistic Personality Disorder, which is It's All About Me personified, can fly off the handle when they don't get their way.
  • Scott Steiner, who by all accounts is a perfectly pleasant person with an incredibly short temper.
  • Frank Sinatra was infamous for his short temper. Those who knew him say that he could be an incredibly warm and friendly person, but if you said something that offended him he'd suddenly become violently angry.
  • Elton John has had a reputation for this, certainly and justifiably with the gossip press, as evidenced in his husband's 1995 documentary Tantrums & Tiaras.
  • Infamous Cincinnati Reds owner Marge Schott - famously immortalized as a Billy West character - was often (and loudly) vocal about her disgust at having "NIGGAHS!!" on her team. Needless to say, this caused a controversy. Or several.
  • Phil Spector was notorious in the music business for pulling a gun on anyone who disagreed with him - even Stevie Wonder. His murder charges surprised no one that knew him.
  • Andrew Jackson, 7th President of the U.S., would fight anyone at the drop of a hat. Especially if you insulted his wife.
  • As of very recently, Justin Bieber has gotten himself this reputation.


GrieferOnline PersonasInternet Cold Reader
Cute and PsychoViolence TropesJack the Ripoff
Foreign Language TiradeAnger TropesHeroic BSOD
Gullible LemmingsCharacters as DeviceHanging Judge
Guilty PleasureCharacter Flaw IndexHates Baths
Crouching Moron, Hidden BadassYou Wouldn't Like Me When I'm AngryHulking Out
God Is FlawedPsychology TropesHappily Failed Suicide
GrieferThe Jerk IndexHandsome Devil
GoodfellasImageSource/Live-Action FilmsBilling Displacement
Hair-Raising HareVillainsHanging Judge

alternative title(s): The Pesci; Berserk Keyboard; Hair-trigger Temper
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