"Fireballs? Teleports? Fancy ninja shit? Naw son, we do pipes to the spine. All day."Subtrope of Improvised Weapon and related to both Carry a Big Stick and Simple Staff, segments of piping usually used to channel liquids or gases are also effective clubs. Use of them as a weapon is especially common in derelict or wartorn zones where the piping is not in use and in poor repair, allowing easy acquisition. When not in the hands of a criminal or simpleton, this is generally a weapon of last resort. Even if the piping is still installed, pipes can still be used as weapons. Broken pipe ends can be used to impale a careless enemy, valves can release scalding liquids or gases, and they can make for a good surface to crack heads against. While most piping is generally featureless, weaponized pipes tend to feature elbow joints and valves to emphasize the fact that they are, in fact, from a plumbing system.
open/close all folders
Anime & Manga
- In the second episode of Digimon Frontier, Kouji proceeds to use this against a horde of Pagumon. And wins. At least until one of them digivolves into Raremon.
- In the virtual world arc of Yu-Gi-Oh!, Kaiba uses one of these against Nezbit/Tristan.
- Russia from Axis Powers Hetalia carries around a lead pipe as an Improvised Weapon. He makes a habit of pulling it out of nowhere, puts things like food in it to take out later, and calls it his "magical stick" when he uses it to go after Estonia after he wrongfully accuses him of hacking his blog. According to Word of God, he has it because of Russian soldiers during World War II taking lead pipes as trophies.
- Erza uses a pipe in a fight with delinquentsnote in the Fairy Tail High School A.U. story.
- Otcho of 20th Century Boys was trained to use a bo, but since he's mostly in an urban environment his usual weapon is a pipe.
- In Naruto, Tobi once used a jagged pipe as a spear instead of a club when fighting Konan.
- In the Super Dimension Fortress Macross episode where Hikaru and his wingmen board the Zentradi flagship, Breetai beats down two Valkyries with a pipe. After walking along the surface of his ship to find an airlock after being thrown out of a gaping hole.
- Used a couple of times in the film adaptation of AKIRA first when Yamagata uses one to fight Joker of the Clown gang, then when Tetsuo kills a Clown by bashing him over the head with one as he drives by on his motorcycle.
- In One Piece, as a child, Luffy, Ace, and Sabo's primary weapons were steel pipes, which they used as staffs. And while his brothers grew to rely more on their Devil Fruit powers, Sabo still uses his pipe as an adult.
- Professor Layton and the Eternal Diva: In his animated movie, Professor Layton picks up a pipe to defend himself from the villain Jean Descole's sword as they battle on top of his Humongous Mecha. Because the professor is incapable of doing anything in an unclassy way, he actually fences with a lead pipe and sucessfully disarms his opponent.
- In the Sands of Destruction manga, Taupy attempts to train Kyrie using scraps of pipe. Naja interrupts them, and so Kyrie is forced to fight using nothing but his pipe.
- Clue: One of the possible murder weapons is a lead pipe.
- In Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers, Tommy beats Michael with a pipe until green slime starts bleeding out of his head.
- Cloverfield features Marlena using a broken pipe as a weapon against the giant parasites.
- Commando: Let off some steam, Benett!
- A lead pipe is one of the possible murder weapons in Clue
- In Pulp Fiction, Marcellus Wallace informs Zed that he is going to be dealt with by some associates Marcellus describes as "Pipe Hittin' ". He also tells him that said associates will go to work with a pair of pliers and a blowtorch* , so pipes are probably going to be the least of the man's problems.
- In The Return of the Living Dead, the character Burt uses a length of pipe to try and beat back the zombie horde trying to get into the mortuary.
- In Blade Runner, Decker attacks Batty with a length of pipe during their final confrontation.
- TheWarriors: When our eponymous heroes are preparing to face down the Rogues, Comanche wrenches a pipe from beneath the boardwalk to arm himself. He won't need it.
- Jason from Terkel In Trouble always has an iron pipe on his person. He doesn't actually use it for something at first, and a Running Gag is that he constantly drops it, making others ask why he bothers carrying it around. His reply is: "You never know when you'll need an iron pipe". Of course, it ends up being useful when he has to use it in a fight against a psychotic teacher.
- In Taken after managing to break the supports of the pipe he was handcuffed to the hero opens the valve and sprays a bad guy in the face with what turns out to be high-pressure steam.
- In Miami Connection various characters weld pipes as weapons. Some of them seem to cut like swords.
Mike Nelson: Why is your pipe so sharp?! Why?!
Live Action TV
- Arrested Development: White Power Bill believes in the healing power of this. "PIPE!"
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Buffy beats a demon to death in the flooded basement of her house with a pipe in the episode "Flooded."
- Battlestar Galactica (2003): Leoben tries to beat Commander Adama to death with a pipe in the pilot. It doesn't go well, because William Adama is a Badass Grandpa.
- The Flash (2014): A briefly depowered Reverse Flash grabs a pipe while fighting the Arrow. He gets in all of one hit before Oliver grabs it, punches him, and uses it to flip him onto the ground.
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: In Waltz, Dukat gives an already injured Captain Sisko a savage offscreen pipe beating.
- In Coronation Street, Rob Donovan uses a pipe to kill Tina McIntyre.
- In The Protomen's Act II, Joe used one when attempting to fight the Sniper. It didn't help much.
- Iron Crown Enterprises' Cyberspace RPG had a "heavy alloy" pipe as an available weapon.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Manhattan Project: During the boss fight with Groundchuck he starts out unarmed, after taking several hits he rips a large pipe out of the wall and uses it as a weapon.
- Urban Dead: Metal Poles are possible weapons obtainable, although their base 2 damage and 10% accuracy is overshadowed by stronger, more accurate weapons.
- In Final Fight, pipes can be used as weapons, their slow attack speed mitigated by damage and long striking range. When some of the characters from the series were ported over to other games set in the same universe (mainly Street Fighter), the pipe made occasional appearances alongside them. It's brandished by Cody in a baseball-like fashion at the end of his Last Dread Dust Ultra Combo in Super Street Fighter IV and is used as a special by Haggar in Marvel vs. Capcom 3; the (former) Trope Namer comes from seeing Haggar use the pipe in competitive play.
- Streets of Rage: Pipes are one of the most common weapon type through the series, and they work pretty much exactly like they do in Final Fight. The Xbox Live Arcade rerelease of Streets of Rage 2 also has an achivement for killing enemies with a pipe.
- Quite strangely for a character whose action skill is going Blood Knight with his Good Old Fisticuffs, Brick from Borderlands uses a piece of pipe as his normal melee weapon.
- Lots of fragile mooks in No More Heroes come at you with pipes.
- Pipes are one of the Improvised Weapons that can be used (by ripping them off the wall) in Condemned: Criminal Origins and Condemned 2: Bloodshot.
- Oddly the pipe in Beneath a Steel Sky was not used as a weapon till very end, and only to damage one minor vein of Linc so you can enter a secret lab.
- Most Silent Hill games, except Shattered Memories, 0rigins and Downpour feature the Steel Pipe as the first decent melee weapon. It often remains as the weapon with the longest reach, and therefore the safest to beat the monsters with, throughout the game.
- Pipes are also featured as weapons in the Grand Theft Auto games.
- Both Sonny games start you off with a pipe. The Flavor Text in the second game is "Me and the pipe... we go way back".
- A pipe is the starting weapon in the first System Shock. Does less damage than a basic pistol bullet, but with greater Critical Hit chance and armor penetration.
- In Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas, lead pipes are weak melee weapons commonly used by raiders.
- Raul uses one as his default melee weapon.
- The Half-Life Game Mod Poke 646 has a gaspipe as its first Emergency Weapon.
- One of the many improvised weapons available in Action Doom 2: Urban Brawl.
- Also one of the weapons that can be found in River City Ransom. With high damage and a long range, it's a good one.
- The first melee weapon in Kingpin: Life of Crime. The main character digs it out of the trash after being left for dead in Skid Row.
- Georg in Agarest Senki 2 uses a lead pipe as a Joke Weapon.
- Max Payne uses a lead pipe as his only melee weapon in the first act of the first game, before picking up a baseball bat from Frank Niagara.
- Resident Evil 2: the G-Virus mutated William Birkin uses one in his first mutation.
- As is fitting for its After the End setting, one of Nina's staffs in Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter is a metal pipe with a tap still attached to it, which naturally gives her water-elemental attacks a damage boost.
- Pipes are a common, as well as powerful, melee weapon featured in The Last of Us.
- The very first weapon you find in System Shock.
- Batman: Arkham Asylum: Pipes are a very common weapon use by the convicts, that can leave Batman dazed if he is hit.
- The tutorial case in Professor Layton vs. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney is for assault with a pipe (and also for stealing a stuffed toy).
- Bully has Edgar, the Townie's leader, who tears a large pipe out of the wall of the steam plant when you fight him.
- Wolfenstein: The Old Blood gives the player a pair of pipe sections with a multitude of uses, from stabbing and bludgeoning enemies, to climbing certain wall sections, to smashing open boxes and prying and propping open doors.
- During their final duel in Goblins, Thaco knocked Dellyn backwards so he was impaled on a jagged pipe. Thaco left him there, alive, to be forgotten by humans and goblins alike.
- Newheimburg has Jack Delitt, who always manages to run into a pipe as an improvised weapon.
- In Tower of God, Hatsu is forced to use a pipe to replaced his swords after they get broken by Cassano.
- The Clue weapon was also used for a gay-joke on Family Guy.
Jasper (to Stewie): Sorry little guy, we were playing Clue and he got me in the bedroom with a lead pipe.
- In the Robot Chicken sketch "Iron Cheney" the terrorists order the vice-president to build them weapons. He says he already has one and knocks one out with a pipe, calling it the "Cheney Special." The terrorists say they'll take a thousand.
- The "Intensive Care Bear" from The Simpsons.
Homer: Why does a bear need a crowbar?
Bear: Eh, I don't like to get my hands dirty.
- One episode of the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon saw Shredder rip a drainpipe off of a wall to use as a weapon. Directly inspired one of Leonardo's few wisecracks: "Why, Shredder. You look very distinguished with a pipe."
- Pops up from time to time in Sealab 2021. In the episode Green Fever, Sparks and Stormy get pipes from "pipe storage" (which apparently offers museum-style tours and an informational video about pipe history) to defend themselves against the infected.
- In Frisky Dingo, Killface is impaled by a pipe after a rather nasty fall. After trying and failing to get medical aid for himself and his party in an emergency room, he finally snaps, tears the pipe from his chest, and kills a doctor with it. It's funnier than it sounds.