"...This mustn't register on an emotional level. First, distract target. Then block his blind jab. Counter with cross to left cheek. Discombobulate. Dazed, he'll attempt a wild haymaker. Employ elbow block, and body shot. Block feral left. Weaken right jaw. Now fracture. Break cracked ribs. Traumatize solar plexus. Dislocate jaw entirely. Heel kick to diaphragm. In summary, ears ringing, jaw fractured, three ribs cracked, four broken. Diaphragm hemorrhaging. Physical recovery: six weeks. Full psychological recovery: six months. Capacity to spit at back of head: neutralized."A trope found mostly in literature, this is the description of a fight in excruciating medical detail - as the fight is going on. Often the case if narrated by a combatant capable of Awesomeness by Analysis. However, it can easily come off as simply annoying or unnecessary. A frequent target of parodies.
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Anime And Manga
- A common trope of stories aimed at the young male demographic, many super-powered kung-fu series make use of this extensively. Current prime offenders include such titles as Naruto and Bleach. Any given detail over the local form of magical kung-fu can take up entire chapters at a time. Coincidentally, this also helps to extend the life of the series with entire fight-explanation-chapters.
- Frank Miller often does this, especially with Batman in Batman: The Dark Knight Returns. He's far from the only Batman author to write this way either.
There are seven working defenses from this position. Three of them disarm with minimal contact. Three of them kill. The other - [KRAKK] - hurts.
- The Most Triumphant Example in The Dark Knight Returns probably is this line, from the first fight scene where Batman's back in action, perfectly summing up his methods and attitudes.
- The Punisher's various authors have employed this, to incredible anatomical precision.
- In Cerebus the Aardvark, the Roach goes through a Frank Miller phase which allows Dave Sim to mock this trope.
- The 2009 Sherlock Holmes film has two scenes wherein Sherlock plans a beatdown out in advance before delivery. Assisted by Robert Downey Jr's real-life knowledge of Wing Chun.
- In the sequel, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, Holmes does this to an assassin, using metaphors for preparing omlettes to describe how he's beating the piss out of his opponent, i.e. "break the eggs". Sim interrupts the fight a quarter of the way through with a thrown knife. At the climax of the film, Holmes and Moriarty do this with an entire brawl in their minds, figuring out who is going to win by simply analyzing each other. It's clear that Sherlock would lose because of his hobbling shoulder injury that Moriarty inflicted on him earlier... except, like the theft of Moriarty's war chest and simultaneous Surprise Checkmate he detailed earlier to his nemesis... it was all a bait for Moriarty's arrogance to occlude the Heroic Sacrifice that Holmes was really planning.
- See also John Cleese's Holmes film, which parodies this: At one point, Holmes does this after Watson kills the murder victim by being a bumbling imbecile, then explains that he was able to deduce the events because he was in the room the whole time.
- In True Lies, Harry gives a detailed account on how he's going to escape from, and kill his captors, after being given a truth serum.
- In Charlie's Angels, one of the Angels is captured by the Big Bad and tied to a chair. She manages to free her legs and then spends the next few seconds describing in detail how she's going to kick the Mooks' asses before "moonwalking out of there". The fight goes exactly as she described, except for the last part, because what she does can in no way be described as a moonwalk (doesn't matter if a Michael Jackson song is playing in the background).
- Bonus point for trying to burn the ropes tying her hands while talking to the mooks. Her lighter fails. "And, as my trusty zippo is not working, I'll do it with my hands tied". She does.
- In the fight scenes of both The Iliad and The Odyssey, Homer tells in excruciating detail things like where a spear or arrow entered the body of a victim, what vital organs it penetrates and bones it fractures, and where the point emerges on the other side. May be considered the Trope Maker.
- This is par for the course for Matt Stover. Caine, as a narrator, can spend pages on a 30-second fight.
- Nearly all the fight scenes in The Five Ancestors series. The books were written by a martial arts master after all.
- Lee Childs' hero Jack Reacher, as an ex-MP investigator with superhuman math skills, near-CSI investigative abilities and Hyper Awareness, gets outright ridiculous with these sometimes. In Killing Floor, Reacher apparently mentally solves the geometry problem of whether or not he can turn on his firing arc to get the optimal angle to shoot the Big Bad before the Big Bad can get the angle needed to shoot him (all in a fraction of a second, of course) and describes it to the reader.
- Found in works by Neal Stephenson. He doesn't do it that often, but that scene with the Vickers machine gun in Cryptonomicon...man.
- Frank Herbert's Dune
- Matthew Reilly gives pretty detailed descriptions. For example, what it looks like when a person gets shot with an anti-aircraft gun.
- In Francois Rabelais' Gargantua, Rabelais — who had some medical training — takes his time to minutely describe the horrible wounds one of his heroes, a fighting monk, inflicts upon his enemies. All this is played for comedy.
- R. A. Salvatore's Drizzt books, set in Forgotten Realms, tend to do this. In his more recent books, he even does this with magic-using warlocks.
Live Action TV
- The History Channel's Dogfights.
- In Person of Interest, the Machine is capable of generating such fight plans and transmitting them to its champions. We see it in action once in the fourth season finale. As Reese is currently tied up and lacking an ear piece, the Machine commandeers an old fax machine standing nearby. The baddies are understandably non-plussed and read the instructions out loud.
Floyd: Chop right leg, left knee, ACL, tactical blade, glass jaw.