Even in the less politically correct era of animation long gone, the pioneers of animation thought that using boxing gloves instead of bare fists lowered the level of violence. They were also much easier to draw, and easier to see. (However, it has since been proven that because of the extra weight of boxing gloves and because they allow people to hit harder without hurting themselves
, they actually cause more damage than they prevent.
At some point, boxing gloves came to be seen in a comedic light. Boxing gloves on big goofy springs replaced more harmful or deadly implements for all manner of reasons. To drive this point home, boxing gloves are always bright red for heightened visibility. Boxing gloves tend toward the bright red, anyway...
Compare with When All You Have Is a Hammer
. If the red boxing gloves are not directly on someone's fists, then this is Improbable Weapon Usage
There's also the fact that a disembodied bare hand on the end of a spring would fall straight into Body Horror
. With red boxing gloves, you don't have to assume there's a real hand under there.
are almost always shown wearing these.
Concealed red boxing gloves come under this, with the application of Fridge Logic
to hide something about a foot wide in, say, 5 inches of space. Yes, red boxing gloves in cartoons can get very oversized. See also Extendo Boxing Glove
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Anime and Manga
- The Digimon anime has these, from Togemon in the first season to Gaomon in Digimon Savers.
- The first Lupin III (Red Jacket) opening had the boxing glove on a spring. Lupin tries to dive on Fujiko in a bed and, well, falls for the "booby"-trapped "box", so to speak.
- FLCL would imitate the Lupin III example by having main character's father attempt the same thing. It went about as well for him.◊
- The third Keroro Gunsou movie has Keroro whipping out the Kero Ball to salvage an emergency, then hitting a button, only for a boxing glove to come out of it and right into his own face.
- The Pokémon Hitmonchan has a pair of boxing gloves over its hands, due to the fact that it fights mainly with Fighting-type moves and dresses like a boxer.
- In One Piece, during the final event of the Davy Back Fight, Luffy wears these when he faces off with Foxy.
- Nami's "Thunder Tempo" is basically one of those extendo-boxing gloves shooting out of one of the Clima-Tact poles.
- G Gundam's Gundam Maxter can transform into a boxer mode, where its bright red shoulder pads move and transform into boxing gloves. This allows it much more powerful punching techniques.
- Green Arrow has (in)famously used a Boxing Glove Trick Arrow.
- Both the Golden and Silver Age Green Lanterns have gone for the Big Green Boxing Glove for a quick KO.
- In the Carl Barks comic "Back to the Klondike", Scrooge McDuck's "burglar batterer" is a gigantic boxing glove that drops from the ceiling.
- A mysterious flying red boxing glove appears in the dada comic Pokey the Penguin. It first appears in Pokey and the Boxing Glove
- Hellboy's Right Hand of Doom might have been inspired by this...
- In Preacher, Jesse has to infiltrate a Caligula-level sex party. Among the people there is a dude with boxing gloves on, only they're not for boxing.
- The Boxing Glove Mallet in Who Framed Roger Rabbit, with a red boxing glove at the end. Used by a cop in this clip at 0:55, and again by Eddie Valiant at 4:40.
- The Joker used an extendable boxing glove device in Batman (1989), starting about 2:45. This glove is also red.
- The boxing glove bazooka in Hot Shots! 2.
- The 1962 Lolita begins (in what's the story's end) with Humbert tracking Quilty to a cluttered mansion. Quilty, in a loopy drunken haze, tries playing a game of ping pong with the confronting Humbert, who pulls a gun. Quilty challenges him to go mano a mano, pulling on a pair of boxing gloves (there for lord knows what purpose) - he's carrying on comically until Humbert fires a shot. Quilty nervously mumbles "wow... right in the boxing glove!"
- "Don't make me go De La Hoya on you!"
Live Action Television
- Usually invoked when a mecha in Super Sentai relies on boxing in combat - Super Dekaranger Robo from Dekaranger and DaiVoyager from Boukenger may not have red fists, but RedPuncher from Ohranger and Datas Hyper in Tensou Sentai Goseiger do.
- The short-lived XEVOZ modular action-figure line features interchangeable body parts and weapons, including "gag parts" that fly in the face of the general action theme — the Razorclaw figure includes boxing glove hands.
- There is a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles toy which iss basically a cartoonified UH-1 Huey helicopter gunship, but with reciprocating boxing gloves on the ends of the landing skids. It may made it into the series. Here◊ is a pic of the thing.
- At least one Joker toy from each wave of Batman figures has to come with a boxing glove weapon. The first Harley Quinn figure does, too. Even in a toyline based on The Dark Knight, they still have to give the Joker a boxing glove bazooka, with the card back proudly declaring, "He deals a mean right!"
- The toyline that accompanied the WB movie Space Jam had each Looney Toon banded with some toon prop that was never in the movie. Bugs Bunny himself came with a skateboard that had a red boxing glove mounted on it.
- See the Super Sentai examples above. All those mecha are available in toy form, and kidsize Magi Punch gloves have also been made.
- Big Boa from the original G.I. Joe toyline. He was a Cobra operative with a pair of red boxing gloves with the Cobra-insignia on the back. ◊ Interestingly, the mold is reused to make a Balrog figure◊ later on, with gloves retained.
- The final unlock of the first two Ape Escape games is a bright red boxing glove mounted on an extendable lattice, called the Magic Punch.
- Spring-mounted boxing glove in Day Of The Tentacle, which is powerful enough to knock a main character across the room. Fortunately she was a bit loopy to start with.
- In some of the Metal Slug games, while crouching, Tarma uses a spring-loaded boxing glove in his backpack, rather than a knife.
- Akihiko's boxing gloves are red in Persona 3. However, the color can be changed if you change weapons (it just isn't likely).
- Hitmonchan in Pokémon games has them the same as in anime and Poliwhirl has white ones. The former is primarily fighting type and while the latter's main focus is Making a Splash, he can learn fighting, too.
- Averted in Punch-Out!!: Little Mac's gloves are green. Likewise in the 2009 Wii release his gloves are a different color depending on what circuit the player is in, as he wears the aforementioned green gloves in the minor circuit, Light Blue Gloves in the Major Circuit, Red Gloves in the World Circuit (Which justifies the trope), and Golden Gloves in Title Defense.
- The game's Title Defense mode gives Aran Ryan a boxing glove whip. How nobody calls him out for it is beyond me. The glove on the whip is purple (the ones he's wearing are a light green).
- Rival Schools' Tiffany wears over-sized boxing gloves as a part of her cheerleading/fighting costume.
- Red boxing gloves on springs are one of the weapons in a battle game in Super Monkey Ball.
- Knuckles from the Sonic the Hedgehog series might count as a variation: his gloves are in the shape of boxing gloves, but they're white; Knuckles himself is red.
- In Sonic Adventure 2, one of Dr. Eggman's close-range attacks is a boxing glove on a spring.
- In Sonic Battle, Tails and Amy each use boxing gloves in one of their attacks (Amy just punches wearing them, Tails summons one on an extending spring).
- In Street Fighter, there's a character who's called M Bison in Japan, Balrog in the US, and sometimes just the Boxer by fans who want to avoid confusion. At least the red boxing gloves are always the same.
- Taz: Wanted has these as "Whack-in-the-Boxes", which must be disabled before destroying them.
- In Wario: Master of Disguise, Wario can use one attached to a spring.
- The second boss in Wario Land Shake It had Wario using a red boxing glove on a spring attached to a unicycle to attack him (or more precisely, knock spanners and tires at the boss and smash up his race car). There was also an enemy in Super Mario Sunshine that was just a red boxing glove on a spring, and that just knocked him off a ledge or the like.
- Ricky in The Legend of Zelda Oracle games wears these. In fact, they are his Iconic Item and in both games, you have to retrieve them before he will help you.
- The Joker uses the already-mentioned extendo Boxing Glove in Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe.
- These spring up in some sillier racing games as an attack, such as in Looney Tunes's Space Race; here it's the ammo for a pistol. The schematics show that the punch goes "that way very fast".
- Gato in Chrono Trigger attacks with one of these mounted on an extender in its chest. Justified since it's a training robot and not meant to slaughter the happy citizens who take their chances.
- As a Boxing Kangaroo, Roger and his wife from the Tekken series wear these; his son wears yellow gloves, and Palette Swap Alex wears blue. Somehow they're able to use Professional Wrestling grapples with them.
- One of these is described as a penalty for guessing the wrong password in the RPG Wasteland. Rather odd appearance in the after-the-end genre.
- In Team Fortress 2, The Heavy unlocks a pair of boxing gloves as a Melee weapon, replacing his fists. While they're slower then the fists, every kill you make with them gurantees 5 seconds of Critical Hits, allowing the Heavy to go on a spree of killer uppercuts. They're called the Killing Gloves of Boxing, which is also Fun with Acronyms; The Heavy is Russian, and the KGB was the Russian CIA. More recently, he also got the Gloves of Running Urgently (GRU), which have flames painted on them and make him run faster.
- Several pairs of red boxing gloves can be found in Fallout 2, in New Reno. They're the only weapon you're allowed to bring into the ring if you take up prizefighting. The regular gloves follow suit fairly well, as they do minimal damage. The plated gloves, on the other hand, packs a little surprise...
- Fallout: New Vegas brings back the Boxing Gloves, which make non-lethal takedowns much easier. Those who don't like the gloves can opt for Handwraps of Awesome instead. There are also golden versions found in the Lucky 38, which are improved versions of the regular thing.
- In Final Fantasy VII, Barret gets one as a melee-range weapon for his gun arm, called the Rocket Punch. It functions as his materia-slotless but more physically powerful weapon.
- Dizzy from the 8-bit games. Though they don't exactly look like ones, there is a textbox in the third game that proves that yes, he is indeed wearing boxing gloves.
- One of the costume sets unlocked as a veteran reward (given for time in play) in City of Heroes is a boxing set that naturally includes Red Boxing Gloves.
- League of Legends features Blitzcrank, a magical/mechanical golem. At least two of his skins have him wearing large Red Boxing Gloves over his large hands (he is still able to grab with those).
- Rainbow Islands features boxing gloves on springs as enemies on Toy Island. They're purple to begin with, but that's because they turn red when antagonised.
- In Felix the Cat for the NES, Felix starts out with a red boxing glove. (This is also in the Game Boy version, except that the Game Boy can't show red.)
- Mario Superstar Baseball has Donkey Kong use a red boxing glove instead of a baseball bat, punching balls pitched to him. The sequel has other Donkey Kong characters using non-standard items in the place of a baseball bat, most notably Funky Kong using a surfboard.
- I shudder to think of how brutally Strong Bad of Homestar Runner could make fun of names and spelling errors, if he didn't have to type through his boxing gloves.
- The Champ, a superhero in the Global Guardians PBEM Universe, is the Anthropomorphic Personification of Boxing (no, really...). His costume naturally includes red boxing gloves, though it's not clear whether those are actually gloves or his hands, because no one has ever seen him take them off, and he seems to be able to manipulate things through them just fine.
- The Joker from Batman, more so for the DCAU version, along with his sidekick Harley Quinn. It goes wrong one time when Harley tries to headshot Supergirl with a boxing glove gun, and it rebounds off Kara's head harmlessly to score a direct hit on Harley herself.
- In the Classic Disney Short Magician Mickey, Donald Duck fights with a cactus sporting boxing gloves.
- In another cartoon, Clown of the Jungle, the Aracuan Bird gets Donald with spring-loaded boxing gloves that come out of his sunglasses.
- Cartoon kangaroos often wear them, as part of the Boxing Kangaroo stereotype.
- In an episode of Home Movies, Brendon's grandpa has boxing gloves and offers to teach Brendon to fight. Brendon is understandably hesitant but grandpa's repeatedly goading him with girly name-calling gets him to get in some punches. And grandpa lined the gloves with ball bearings for extra "oomph". Painfully, awkwardly funny.
- On Beavis And Butthead, the duo practice for mud wrestling by making a mudpit in their front yard, wearing biking tops, and smacking each other with a baseball bat that has a boxing glove on the end. It is just as amazing as it sounds.
- The Tex Avery MGM short "Lonesome Lenny" uses the old 'loaded boxing glove' bit punching Screwy Squirrel. He grabs the glove and shakes out a horseshoe...then three more...and the horse from which they came.
- In the VeggieTales video "Dave and the Giant Pickle", Goliath comes out to fight Dave with big red boxing gloves. Which float in the air because he doesn't have hands.
- Mr. Bogus wears these in the third act of the episode "Shop Around The Clock" while sparring against a toy kangaroo in the toy store.
- Actually, some studies have been shown that a person will do MORE damage with boxing gloves for a few reasons. A person is much less likely to hold back for fear of hurting themselves, or the other person, thinking the gloves will protect them. The padding of the glove distributes the force of impact across more area, like an AOE attack in an MMO. Boxing gloves exist primarily to prevent the fists from getting damaged (human bones are strong, hand bones are weak, and the face sports many inconvenient angles to break your hand on). It does reduce the chance of blood from facial cuts, but it increases the risk of brain damage. One of the reasons they eschew traditional boxing gloves in UFC is that it's safer (well, that and they'd make grappling a bitch).
- The number of boxers killed before the introduction of gloves was negligible (a handful of recorded cases). This number exploded with the introduction of gloves, because you could now punch opponents in the face repeatedly without breaking your hand. Furthermore, the way force is transferred through the glove increases the stress on the brain (read: brain damage and fatal aneurisms). Some sources estimate the death rate of bareknuckle boxing at about 14,000 deaths per million participants, and of modern professional boxing at less than 80 deaths per million participants. Of course, brain damage isn't necessarily death...
- Although many colors of glove do exist, red is possibly the most common in professional fights and certainly the most iconic.