You can't beat me with strength.
Speed can't beat me.
You're gonna find out, you, just, can't, beat, me... period!
I am the world's strongest man! You better be worried about surviving through the night.
The World's Strongest Man is a character who is, well — the strongest man in the world
or universe, or, at the very least the strongest human
. He may be brainy
(sometimes he Does Not Know His Own Strength
), attractive or ugly
, but one thing is for sure — you don't want to mess with him, as he will most definitely wipe the floor with you. He may be going on The Hero's Journey
, or he may just be full of himself and his power
. If he's a villain, he's often either the Big Bad
or The Dragon
This trope may be played with by Samus Is a Girl
or Fake Ultimate Hero
. See also Super Strength
. Note that this trope refers to a character type, determining just who is
the strongest leads to arguments about Character Tiers
Likely to be seen with clowns
and circus brats
. May overlap with World's Best Warrior
, although "best warrior" doesn't necessarily mean "strongest". World's Most Beautiful Woman
might be an arguable Distaff Counterpart
, because Men Are Strong, Women Are Pretty
open/close all folders
Anime and Manga
- Sensui from YuYu Hakusho — world's strongest human. Kuwabara later receives the title of world's strongest human. It's a shame that his other companions are stronger demons.
- Dragon Ball Z.
- Goku is the straight version of this trope.
- Mr. Satan/Hercule only lets people think he's the world's strongest man, whereas the Z Fighters leave him in the dust. Admittedly, he's pretty tough for a human, punching through a bus, but he's nowhere near the world's strongest man in the DBZ universe, and Word of God says that he's weaker than Bob Sapp.
- In a weird twist, Krillin ends up being the strongest normal human in the group. He has occasionally pointed out friends of his, including the goofy Yamcha and even Education Mama Chichi, are still ridiculously strong compared to the average nondescript civilian. That is, if we're not counting Uub (biologically 100% human, but the magical reincarnation of an incredibly powerful djinn) and Tenshinhan who is, according to the Word of God, an Alien.
- At certain points in the story, both Tenshinhan and Master Roshi were the strongest men in the world before they were both surpassed by Goku.
- By the end of the series, it can be argued that the strongest person is Gohan due to having his "ultimate potential" unlocked. Prior to that, it could also be argued that the strongest person is Vegetto, for whittling the strongest form of Majin Buu, the series' Final Boss, to little more than a nuisance, whereas Gohan was outmaneuvered by the previous version of Buu. But Vegetto exists only for as long as Goku and Vegeta are fused, leaving Gohan the strongest again when the fusion is broken.
- Don Kreig from One Piece thinks he is this. He's pretty strong, but not even close.
- Dracule "Hawk-eye" Mihawk is known as the world's greatest swordsman.
- During his lifetime, the Pirate King Gold Roger was considered to be the strongest man in the world, and Whitebeard was considered to be the closest to his strength. When he died is when the title, by default, went to...
- Whitebeard, who is called the actual world's strongest man... and it's probably not an exaggeration. He is powerful enough that the World Government find it necessary to pool pretty much their entire military might in preparation for his onslaught when a single crewmember of his is caught and scheduled for execution. Even with all their powers combined, they aren't certain of the outcome. This is partially because his long unknown Devil Fruit power is to create shockwaves. Big ones. As in "punch an island in two." However, his mere strength alone is still insane, with him stopping an entire ship that was pushed along the ground with his arm and not budging a bit, holding off the strike of a giant with one hand, defeating another giant, also with one hand and beating down Power-Nullifier Blackbeard, a very strong and powerful pirate in his own right, through strength alone. This is while he was suffering from a terminal illness, as well as being half deaf, half blind, missing half his face, and at certain death. It is implied he was way stronger twenty or so years ago, so, if anything, strongest man in the world is an understatement for him.
- In general the Four Emperors, of whom Whitebeard was a member, are considered the strongest people in the world, to the point where Admirals are called in at the merest hint of any movement. Another of the Four Emperors, Kaidou, has been described as the strongest "creature" in the world, whatever that means.
- To put this in perspective, Donquixote Doflamingo was given a Sadistic Choice where he would either be hunted down by the Admirals or incur the wrath of one of the Four Emperors (in this case, his business partner Kaidou). The Admirals are Nigh Invulnerable combatants whom only the strongest of pirates don't start screaming and running for their lives at the mere sight of. When his attempt to Take a Third Option fails, Doflamingo almost immediately chooses to take his chances with the Admirals. That's how terrifyingly strong the Four Emperors are.
- Mahou Sensei Negima!
- Jack Rakan seems to currently hold this position. When you can blow up a mountain by accident or destroy a barrier dimension by flexing your muscles, you earn the position. On a scale in which an ordinary, non-magical human being is the baseline, and an expert magical warrior might break 1000, he estimated himself at 12,000 (he also likes to joke around, though, so it's possible he was exaggerating).
- Nagi Springfield was also one of these, being even more powerful than Jack, at least until he mysteriously disappeared.
- In Hellsing, Alucard is the world's strongest vampire, not only in magical power but physical strength as well.
- Hayato Furinji in History's Strongest Disciple Kenichi. While using 0.002% of his full power he can crush trees like twigs and split the earth without problems.
- Baki the Grappler's Yujiro Hanma. His title is the "Strongest Creature in the World."
- And now Baki holds that title after Yujiro willing gave it to Baki. Even after curb stomping Baki with ease after going all out in their Fabled final battle.
- Mr. Don from Eyeshield 21. When a guy can hand a Worf Effect to Kurita Ryokan, Yamato Takeru, Shin Seijuro, AND Gaou Rikaya, holy crap. Hell, Gaou, the heaviest hitter on the entire protagonist team, had to use a Delta Dynamite just to knock the guy off balance! Good lord.
- Claire Stanfield from Baccano! and Shizuo Heiwajima from Durarara!!. Wordof God confirms that they are strongest person in their own series and top five in The Verse, which consists of Baccano!, Durarara!!, Vamp!, Hariyama-san and Etsusa Ōhashi series. And that's including immortals, vampires, and other supernatural creatures. The only beings stronger than them are: a living black hole and a Mook who goes From Nobody to Nightmare because the author made "strongest man in the history of time" the basis for his character.
- Sailor Galaxia of Sailor Moon's fame is the strongest woman in the universe, capable of destroying Tokyo with a warm-up without even bothering to transform and access her full power (nearly happened in the manga). When she transforms, she can depopulate the world with a small gesture (she did in the anime) and kill Sailor Senshi and similar enemies without even trying. Cue Oh, Crap moment when she's found out to be the legendary hero the Sailor Starlights hoped would avenge them...
- Teresa from Claymore is known as the strongest Claymore of all generations. This is understating her capability; she's an order of magnitude stronger than anyone else, and when she goes rogue, she's capable of single-handedly curb-stomping an entire team of high-ranked Claymores. (Priscilla is possibly stronger than Teresa by this point, but being an Awakened Being, she doesn't count.)
- According to trainee twins, Raki is the strongest known human.
- Nuriko, the strongest Seishi in Fushigi Yuugi.
- Madoka turns out like this, one-shotting Walpurgis Night and all. Too bad it's that kind of show, and the only thing left after defeating the most powerful witch is to become an even more powerful witch and destroy the world. It's at this point where Madoka surpasses mere physicality when, in accordance with her wish, destroys her own witch and becomes the concept of hope.
- Maoyuu Maou Yuusha has The Hero (no, that's his name according to the books) being capable of curb stomping any army. This is how he is even introduced before meeting Maou.
- A Certain Magical Index: Accelerator holds the title as far as the general public is concerned, being the strongest of only seven Level 5 espers in existence (as he is fond of reminding everyone). There are, however, several characters who outclass him, with the actual most powerful probably going to Aleister Crowley. The most powerful confirmed entity in the series is Crowley's mentor Aiwass, but he/she/it isn't human.
- In Naruto, this has been used to describe the First, Third, and Fourth Hokages at various points, as well as Madara Uchiha. Once the Shinobi World War arc starts to get going, Naruto himself starts to enter this competition. However, everyone In-Universe seems to think that The Sage of the Sixth Paths, the man who invented ninjutsu and the only person so far who could defeat the Ten-Tail' was the strongest man to ever live, and when Obito achieves a similar feat and becomes the Ten-Tails Jinchuriki, the former Hokage and even Madara Uchiha start to fear him.
- Orochimaru's primary goal is to become this. After getting defeated by Sasuke and dying and then getting his resurrected form immediately defeated by Itachi without much effort from either of them, he seems to have abandoned this goal after he's resurrected again in Chapter 593. Or at least he's willing to admit that he isn't (currently) capable of this goal - he still says he want to get Sasuke's Sharingan. He also says that he has become more interested in helping people with their own goals, rather than pursuing his own.
- Guy has been outright acknowledged as the best taijutsu user alive, and this is coming from Madara, who personally fought the First Hokage and judges everyone by that goalpost.
- The Sage of the Six Paths during his meeting with Naruto in the spiritual plane claims that his mother Kaguya was outright the most powerful being to ever live, since she was the one who claimed the power of chakra in the first place. She was a Physical Goddess while he was a "mere" demigod in comparison.
- Kenshiro of Fist of the North Star is the most powerful practitioner of Hokuto Shinken in general existence. Only a handful of warriors have given him a proper fight, much less been able to defeat him.
- Zekka from Battle Angel Alita. In a world where the average civilian is a cyborg capable of killing a human five metres away, his punches can kill at 2 Kilometres, without a shred of effort. A serious attack from him makes the victim and everything near them explode. And is ultimate attack, which he never uses due to it being overkill? It can obliterate continents.
- Levi from Attack on Titan is reputed to be as strong as an entire brigade and dubbed Humanity's strongest soldier. He is shown downing Titans without effort and dominated the Female Titan in battle, the latter who murdered countless of other soldiers, including Levi's own personal squad.
- Sesshoumaru from InuYasha is the world's strongest demon. The only demons shown to be on his level of strength are the Big Bad Naraku, whose powers stem solely from absorbing other demons and the Shikon no Tama, instead of himself, the demon that was sealed inside the Shikon no Tama, and Magatsuhi, the evil spirit of said Jewel. Sesshoumaru kicks Magatsuhi's ass the moment he gains his very own Infinity+1 Sword (one of the most powerful weapons in the story). The abilities of said sword also happen to be the perfect counter to Naraku's From a Single Cell regeneration.
- Afro Samurai : The wielder of the Number One Headband.
- Lyrical Nanoha
- In High School D×D, Archangel Gabriel is a woman and has the title "The Strongest Woman in Heaven".
- In the manga Rain, Rain is reputed to be the greatest warrior and general in the world. It's not hard to see why, considering he wields an Infinity+1 Sword, absorbed the power and lifeforce of a dragon, and has yet to decisively lose a battle. The only people who have given Rain a hard time in single combat are the Big Bad, a powerful demon king in human form, and an immortal hero who saved the world from demonic invasion centuries ago.
- America of Hetalia Axis Powers seems to be a fairly benign variation of this, in comparison to the rest of the cast, being the world's last superpower; he's seen lifting cars and swinging buffalo with little discernible effort. Of course, this isn't always so harmless.
- In Date A Live, Ellen Mira Mathers has the title "The World's Strongest Wizard". She's very arrogant about her title and turns into a Sore Loser at any perceived failure, like if someone she is curb-stomping manages to escape.
- Thorkell the Tall in Vinland Saga, who is able to lift massive tree trunks with his bare hands, impale three men with a single javelin he threw from over a kilometre away, send Thorfinn flying with a single kick, and stop a galloping horse in its track by punching it out. And yet he's not the World's Best Warrior.
- In Toriko, the Eight Kings of the Gourmet World are the mightiest beasts in the Gourmet World. One of them is a Battle Wolf like Terry whose capture level is 6090. Another is a giant horse with From a Single Cell functional immortality whose hoofprint is the size of a mountain range.
- The anime of Sengoku Basara awards this distinction to its incarnation of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, whose ability to punch things turns "physics" into a sad joke. Most named characters in the series show the ability to crack the earth with their blows. Hideyoshi uses one to split the inland sea.
- Saitama from One Punch Man.
- Mako "Valkyria" Fujisaki from Gokukoku No Brynhildr is the strongest witch known, a S-Rank who can use eight different types of magic. The usual is one, sometimes two. As a result, she is The Dreaded.
- Sinbad in Magi - Labyrinth of Magic by virtual of holding seven Djinn and having a supernatural amount of magoi for a regular human. Even Kouen has four fewer Djinn than him.
- In Mother Keeper, Zelik Lindemann is the strongest man in the slums and most likely the world as no one in Eden seems to be likely to fare well against him, even with Syal in insanity mode, she's barely managing to keep up against him once the initial surprise wears off.
- Superman is generally thought of as the strongest superhero in the DC universe, though there are a number of cosmic and legendary beings who are comparable and may (depending on the writer) be depicted as stronger than him, including Heracles, Darkseid, Mongul, Doomsday, Despero, Monarch, Sodam Yat, Vartox (Pre-Crisis), Superboy Prime, Ariella Kent, and his Kingdom Come counterpart. Ostensibly Superboy Prime is, at the moment, the strongest character in the main DC universe - just not emotionally. Though aside from Heracles, none of these characters are regularly present on Earth so he has a reasonable claim to the title.
- Most of these are close enough that a writer could legitimately show it going either way depending on who's having an off day or who's more clever about how they apply their strength.
- Also, exactly how strong Superman is varies greatly depending on the writer or era in question. Because Supes has been around a long time and because of the need to keep stories interesting by continually putting him in situations where it looks like he might lose only to have him through at the last minute with a heroic effort topping anything he's done before, by the early 1970s he could reduce planet-sized objects to rubble with a single punch. He's been rebooted several times since then, each time depowering him back to less Godlike levels, but it never sticks for long (for essentially the same reason).
- Wonder Woman is generally portrayed as the strongest woman in the DC universe. Depending on who's writing her, she's sometimes described as second only to Superman in terms of strength.
- Though Fridge Logic suggests that if she's not as strong as Superman, she might not be as strong as Supergirl or PowerGirl either. She's certainly not as tough as the latter two as they don't have to dodge or block bullets like she does.
- Depending on the writer, she may be perfectly capable of taking a bullet without damage, but blocks them anyway because it's more effective psychologically. If you fire a bullet at someone and they no-sell it, maybe you just missed. If you fire a bullet at someone, she moves her bracelet to at least near where you were aiming, and there's a ricochet sound ... you didn't miss, she's just that fast. Also, even if they can't actually damage her, they might still sting, and "ow ow ow" is less intimidating than "kapwing kapwing kapwing".
- Power Girl is another contender for strongest women in the DCU, being, powerwise, a female Superman (with more muscle mass than Supergirl).
- The Hulk's potential strength is theoretically unlimited, making him the Marvel Universe's strongest character. Green Scar in particular is the strongest version of the Hulk. Word of God is that the Green Scar Hulk is "stronger than any mortal and most immortals in the Marvel Universe." So he is literally the strongest man; anyone stronger than him is at least a Physical God, and he's stronger than most of those as the only heroes who were able to challenge the Hulk in Green Scar form were the Sentry (see below), The Mighty Thor (in a 'What If?' when he beat the Sentry to New York) and Ghost Rider (who only came to reason with the Hulk and never attacked since Hulk was not guilty).
- The Sentry has also been repeatedly called Marvel's most powerful hero. Having exchanged punches with Hulk (Green Scar version) and Thor, overloaded Absorption Man (who, mind you, could absorb Thor's strength and his hammer's properties) and, according to Spider-Man, beat up Galactus. But in the end, Marvel's most powerful depends on the story: sometimes it's Hulk, sometimes it's Sentry, etc.
- She-Hulk is generally billed as the Strongest Woman in the World in the Marvel Universe.
- Astérix the Gaul has Obelix, a dumb-but-super-strong sidekick who fell into a vat of strength potion as a child.
- The Dandy has Desperate Dan, who memorably once won a World's Strongest Man competition by lifting all the other competitors, plus everything they were lifting.
- Bamse is the world's strongest bear.
- Grant Morrison's Doom Patrol has Flex Mentallo: Man of Muscle Mystery. He is so strong that he can alter the fabric of reality with the precisely tuned vibrations of his muscles, at one point turning the Pentagon into a circle. Which may be some kind of record.
- Some older adventure strips from The Beano featured characters like this such as Morgyn the Mighty.
- Captain Marvel is often considered the "World's Mightiest Mortal", with strength slightly greater than Superman's due to his magical nature.
- Captain Marvel's tagline "World's Mightiest Mortal" originated when he was with Fawcett and there were no real contenders for the title other than Black Adam and (possibly) King Kull. Even when DC licensed the character, he was envisioned as living in the "Earth-S" monoverse and didn't really cross over with the other DC characters much until after the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths merged it with those containing Earths 1, 2, 4, and X. This is another case where Depending on the Writer is in full effect (their actual strength is usually treated as Too Close To Call, but The Big Red Cheese is likely to win a contest of opposed strength because of the "magic" clause in Superman's vulnerabilities).
- Thundra is another Marvel character, she is the worlds strongest woman in her timeline.
- The aforementioned Vartox is the most powerful warrior of planet Valerion. Pre-Crisis, he was depicted as having strength, speed, durability, senses, etc vastly superior to Superman's.
- Suske en Wiske: Jerom possesses all kinds of super powers that lend themselves to great gags, but also posed the story writers for a problem. It's so easy to use him as a deus ex machina that they need to send him off on vacation or give him a sleeping potion to make the stories not to predictable.
- Nero: Jan Spier, the local French fries seller, is very strong. He is able to lift an elephant with one hand, for instance. But author Marc Sleen at least didn't use him that often to avoid predictability.
Films — Live Action
- Fezzik, from The Princess Bride, played by André the Giant.
- Albrecht in The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1989).
- Werner Herzog's film Invincible tells the story of Zishe Breitbart, a real-life Polish-Jewish blacksmith known in his time as "The World's Strongest Man." Jouko Ahola, two-time winner of the World's Strongest Man competition, plays him.
- The Adventures Of Captain Marvel film serial of the 1940's stars Captain Marvel, who channels the strength of Hercules, and is the strongest man in the world by virtue of being the only guy with out and out superpowers.
- Dexter Reilly becomes this in the 1975 Disney film The Strongest Man in the World, thanks to a strength formula that he created.
- Godzilla (2014):
- The King of the Monsters himself, obviously the humans have nothing that is even comparable in the muscle department but also none of the M.U.T.O.s came close to matching him in strength. The female MUTO was almost as large as Godzilla but the big guy can easily overpower her using only one hand and without putting any weight behind it.
- This is consistent with how a bear, which was one of the basis of his fighting style, compares to most other creatures in its habitat.
- Not that the MUTOs were exactly pushovers. The male MUTO, during one of his aerial attacks in the climactic fight, is able to drag Godzilla a few hundred feet.
- Gerard in The Chronicles of Amber, who's effectively the Strongest Man in The Multiverse.
- Maybe. Ganelon manages to drop him, which the observers react to with varying degrees of surprise. Ganelon passes it off as Gerard being unprepared (and expresses his reluctance to attempt a rematch), but it still seems that Ganelon who is really Oberon, Gerard's father is at least a contender.
- Even so Gerard may still hold on to the title, since being physically the strongest doesn't necessarily make you the best fighter. In a contest between Gerard and his (half-)brother Benedict, the smart money would not be betting against Benedict, especially if swords or other weapons were involved. At one point during Corwin's struggle to claim the throne of Amber, he confesses that if Benedict expressed a desire for it, he'd give up immediately, because Benedict is just that good (and because depending on exactly how you interpret the legal ramifications of what amounts to a cosmic annulment, Benedict's claim may be even better than Corwin's).
- Saval Bork of the Matador Series, is established from the first book to be the strongest recorded man in the known universe. However, in Brother Death, he meets Brother Mkono, an assassin who's even stronger than him. After much existential angst, he remembers that he's also trained in the universe's most deadly martial art and proceeds to dismantle his opponent.
- Mr. Strong of The Mr. Men Show fame.
- While it's not stated outright in the novels, Conan the Barbarian might as well be this for his time; the only things he encounters that are unequivocally stronger than him aren't human. Of course, he runs into a lot of those.
- Jean Valjean of Les Misérables is not established as actually being the world's strongest man, but he is so unusually strong that in all his life Javert has never seen any other person possess such strength, which is what causes him to recognize Valjean. Interestingly, Valjean is also about as far as you can get from being a meathead.
- In A Song of Ice and Fire, Ser Gregor Clegane is freakishly large and strong. He stands almost eight feet tall and wields a greatsword with one hand. While mounted, he makes even the largest destrier look undersized, earning him the name "The Mountain That Rides." His abnormal dimensions apparently cause him frequent migraines that drive him into a constant state of rage.
- Pippi Longstocking from the books of the same name is the strongest girl in the world. Amongst other things, she can lift her horse singlehanded.
- The Nameless Narrator of The Night Land is stronger than anyone he has ever encountered, and performs some truly incredible feats of endurance and strength (running for three days in full armor while carrying his girlfriend, for example).
- In The NeverEnding Story, the knight Hykrion claims to be the strongest in the world. Another knight named Hero Hynreck defeats him one-on-one with superior strength. Then, Hynreck himself is thoroughly outmuscled by the real strongest man in Fantasia, Bastian himself, who had used AURYN to give himself godlike strength.
- The Belgariad graces us with a number of phenomenally strong characters- there are so many Big Guys that they actually form their own Five-Man Band of Big Guys, but the knight Mandorallen is something of a standout, crushing a lion to death just by squeezing. Probably one of the most memorable bits, though, is when he was preparing to attack two opposing armies simultaneously, which his companions managed to talk him out of, as they considered it suicidal... although one of them noticed both armies were visibly relieved that he had been called off.
- Honorable mention (at least) to Barak, a berserker of the "turns into an actual bear" variety and pretty strong even in human form.
- Grettir of the Old Icelandic Saga of Grettir the Strong has the reputation of being the strongest man of Iceland.
- Fezzik in The Princess Bride, a Turkish Gentle Giant who nonetheless works for a time as The Brute before his Heel-Face Turn. However, although he's certainly the strongest character we see, the narration notes that what's special about Fezzik isn't his strength, but the ridiculous stamina in his arms - tell him to chop down a forest and the axe will break or his legs will fold beneath him before his arms get tired. This is how he manages to climb the Cliffs of Insanity with three people on his back.
Live Action TV
- Spoofed with Artie from The Adventures of Pete & Pete. Yes, he is pretty strong, but it's by the Pete's standards, and we don't know if he's simply crazy or not.
- His on-camera feats include hitting a golf ball 300,003 feet, pushing a house to the left an inch (he wanted to knock it over, but he had strained a muscle earlier while lifting a brassiere emporium), rolling a bowling ball from whatever state Wellsville is in into Canada, skipping a stone on Neptune, and leaping across the city in a single jump.
- The blink-and-it's-gone goofy '80s fantasy-comedy Wizards And Warriors had The Hero's sidekick Marko, the "strongest man in the kingdom" who often performed clearly superhuman feats in keeping with the show's over-the-top nature.
- Nadine from Twin Peaks is already pretty strong earlier in the series (she involuntarily mangles a steel rail with her bare hands), but after she comes back in her "perky schoolgirl" persona on recovering from her overdose the gloves really come off. In the school gym, she's seen leg-pressing unfeasible amounts of weight without effort, to the astonishment of the watching jocks, and in a touch-down celebration she gleefully whirls the hunky quarterback round in her arms, before, forgetting her own strength, she flings him what appears to be about a hundred feet through the air.
- Damaras of Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger has the title "The Strongest Man in the Universe". When he finally goes into action against the Gokaigers, it shows us that he deserves it.
- In the all-but-forgotten Saturday morning comedy series The Kids From CAPER, small-statured Bugs had immense strength, as long as he could see his hands. Another "kryptonite" for him was the word bananas, which caused him to have hysterics for several minutes.
Mythology, Religion and Folklore
- Hercules in Classical Mythology is not only stronger then every man, he's stronger than the other gods too.
- Also, Hot-Blooded Judge Samson from The Bible.
- Jacob got his alternate name "Israel" (the exact meaning is not clear, but one possibility is "struggles with God") after an all-night wrestling match. At dawn, the man/angel (in some interpretations, God Himself) asks Jacob to release him, and gives him the new name. Jacob's strength is never particularly remarked on outside this incident, though, and it's at least implied that the contest was really more about stubbornness/mental strength than physical strength.
- Magni, from Norse Mythology, who had the combined strength of both parents at the age of two. For the record, his parents were a giantess and Thor.
- In one legend, Thor kills a giant who then falls on top of him, and none of the other gods can free Thor from under the giant until Magni arrives. Magni is "three nights old" when he lifts the giant's foot from Thor's neck. It may perhaps be worth noting that the name Magni literally means "Strong".
- Older Than Dirt: Gilgamesh, the first recorded epic hero, of The Epic of Gilgamesh.
- Bhima in the Mahabharata. When he was two, his mother dropped him by accident on a stone and the stone broke. Keep in mind, he was two.
- Omobe in Yoruba tradition, who was able to force his way into the spirit world and proved strong enough to best some of the orishas(equivalent to gods or angels) in wrestling matches.
- In Mandrake The Magician, Lothar has always been billed as the strongest man in the world.
- Popeye: Popeye is abnormally strong. The animated cartoons added a reason for his strength, though: his infamous spinach.
- This is pretty much a stock wrestling character. Mark Henry is currently billed as the World's Strongest Man in WWE; apparently he was a winner of several Strongest Man competitions as well as an Olympic weightlifter, and he is the current world record holder for the ungeared squat at 430 kg. Previous World's Strongest Men include Bill Kazmaier (who also won a few Strongest Man competitions, and came to the ring holding a giant inflatable globe to evoke images of Atlas) and Ken Patera (who was an Olympic weightlifter). And let's not forget one of the first with this billing, Ted Arcidi.
- Doug Furnas was so billed during his brief WCW and SMW days.
- The late Dino Bravo in WWE, though being a heel, he was usually billed as the Self-Proclaimed World's Strongest Man.
- And sometimes he was billed as Canada's Strongest Man. Guess sometimes people just need more realistic goals...
- The first WrestleCrap book posited that any wrestler using this moniker will inevitably fail, especially if used to promote weightlifters who cannot actually wrestle (which is often the case).
- The Iron Sheik is legendary in strongman circles thanks to his Persian Clubs challenge. 75 lbs. may not sound like much, but swinging that much weight on what is essentially a lever is extremely difficult. Mark Henry was the only wrestler to beat the challenge.
- While the weight's been surpassed, at the time Bruno Sammartino had bench pressed more weight than anyone else in recorded history, earning him the moniker "The Italian Superman."
- Magnitude Kishiwada is billed as "The Strongest Man in Osaka". Although he is pretty small in stature to the gimmick standards, he has a real powerlifting background, and is exceptionally strong for his size.
- Claudio Castagnoli, better known as Cesaro, is currently billed as being "pound for pound, the strongest superstar in the WWE." Zeb Colter insisted Antonio Cesaro was the strongest man in the world but the rest of the roster had their doubts.
- Determining just who is the strongest man in the world was the stated purpose of Akira Maeda's Fighting Network RINGS, a shoot wrestling promotion turned mixed martial arts.
- Jax Briggs of Mortal Kombat fame is considered the physically strongest man on Earth, even before his enhancements. He still can't match the inhuman strength of bosses like Shao Kahn due to to their unnatural powers. Among non-humans, Raiden is regarded as the most powerful kombatant in the series. Not surprisingly, he was Superman's counterpart when their worlds collided.
- Shao Kahn however is stronger than Raiden, since the only time Raiden's ever beaten him was when amped up by the Powers That Be. After all, he's managed to stay Emperor for a reason.
- Sindel is the most powerful female of Mortal Kombat, while her bodyguard Sheeva is the physically strongest.
- Alex Mercer from Prototype is clearly the strongest man in his universe At least, until the sequel.... He can throw a destroyed helicopter at another helicopter with ease.
- Debatable as Mercer was just the human that unleashed the Black light virus which you play as
- There are references in both games to... something known only as Pariah which according to the web of intrigue is like Mercer, only even stronger and harder to kill
- Akuma from Street Fighter is considered to be this but as of the third entry he may be second best or at least found an equal in Oro.
- So far, Asura's Wrath has a lot of potential examples, though Asura himself seems to be a likely candidate by the end of the game.
- Ending the game by beating up Chakravartin, who's essentially God makes one more than just a likely candidate.
- Kratos is the strongest being in all of Greece, if there was anything or anyone else stronger than him, it's because he wasn't there to kill it.
- Duke in Tales of Vesperia was heralded as a hero in the war against the Entelexeia, beings that could wipe out entire towns single-handed.
- Your older brother Gou in Big Bang Age is self-titled as the "weakest man in the world". The reality is that 99.9% of his power goes towards sealing the final boss. In the endgame he releases his seal and gets his power back. Unless you were seriously powerleveling Ryouga, Gou is bar-none the strongest character in the game.
- There are several people in the Blazblue games who can claim the title. There's Jubei, who is word for word described as the world's strongest living being, but suffers a game-breaking injury caused by Phantom and Terumi. There's Hakumen, who is noted as being far more powerful than anyone else in the cast even though he only currently has access to 20-40% of his power. And then there's Azrael, who, to put it bluntly, is an unstoppable juggernaut; even the previously-mentioned Hakumen refuses to fight him in a prolonged battle and prefers retreat to trying to take him down.
- Yuugi Hoshiguma of Touhou. Oni are already feared and respected by everyone, from youkai to celestials, for the freakish strength they have that allows them to tear the sky and mountains apart with barely any effort. Among the oni, The Big Four of the Mountain are particularly infamous for their power, and among the four, Yuugi the Strong is known for her physical strength.
- The two strongest contenders for the Strongest Woman of Gensokyo title, however, are the Youkai of Boundaries, Yukari Yakumo, who's borderline omnipotent within the realm, and Yuuka Kazami, the Ax-Crazy Youkai of Flowers, who despite not having as much skill as Yukari, compensates with pure, raw power. Youkai get Stronger with Age. Yukari's age is indetermined, and all that's known of Yuuka is that she might as well be a Time Abyss.
- Cirno proudly boasts of being "the strongest", sometimes adding "fairy". The problem is that Touhou fairies are idiot Mooks; while Cirno is indubitably the strongest and probably one of the smartest amongst them, she's still mentally an eight-year old at most, and while she can be very dangerous, as seen in Fairy Wars, she's too easily distracted to ever act on her true power.
- Magnus from Kid Icarus: Uprising is a very muscular human with a sword almost as large as his body (when Pit uses it, the game classifies it as a club) able to easily hold his own against The Underworld Army and Palutena's Army. When Pit first meets Magnus, he questions whether he's even human.
- Gilgamesh from Fate/stay night is quite firmly established as the strongest being in the story by a HUGE margin. Word of God even confirms that he would be able to take on all the Servants and Masters on at the same time and easily win. And he is still only in the bottom of the top 5 of the Nasuverse.
- As far as physical power goes, 5th War Berserker (Heracles) is on top, bar none - rank A+ strength and A for endurance and agility even outside Mad Enhancement, which would have added an additional rank on top of those had it ever been used. Until Gilgamesh shows up to mess with the war, Berserker is the biggest obstacle to anyone else winning, and certainly fulfills the spirit of the trope if not its literal truth.
- Of note is that during their battle, Berserker came very close to defeating Gilgamesh (insofar as that he would have won if he was able to get close enough to attack, and he may well have gotten close enough if he either had an additional life, his sanity, or didn't have to shield his master; looking purely at the results, it was still a flawless victory on Gilgamesh's part), and multiple servants and masters have abilities that would logically counter Gilgamesh's if used properly (and canonically were, in two cases). Given the Word of God in the Nasuverse is self conflicting, one would be advised to take it with a grain of salt.
- In Maji De Watashi Ni Koi Shinasai they're only high school students, but...
- Momoyo is considered a "god of martial arts" and is pretty much the strongest person in the world by the beginning of the game;
- Mayucchi's father told the Prime Minister of Japan that his daughter had already surpassed him in skill. Mayucchi's father, who just happens to be the current Sword Saint, a.k.a. the strongest swordsman in the world;
- Though she doesn't get many chances to show off, Miyako is a skilled enough archer to be counted as one of the "Five Bows Under Heaven";
- And finally, there's the "Four Sky Kings" that Momoyo belongs to, of which Ageha is also a member. Tsubame, one of the new heroines in the upcoming sequel, makes her cameo early as a member in the anime. Mayucchi also gains this distinction at the end of her path via Klingon Promotion.
- In Problem Sleuth, the title is first held by Mobster Kingpin and later by Ace Dick.
- The Tower of God was under the supreme rule of Zahard, the first man to climb up and settle down, and his supporters. Then Phantaminum, an existence Shrouded in Myth, came and not only scaled the tower much faster than Zahard, but in the process killed many of his high rankers. These are the 1000 strongest of 100,000 rankers, and even the lowliest ranker can give the main characters a run for their money. After Storming the Castle of the ruler, Phantaminum disappeared, never to be seen again, however, similar Irregulars followed, shaking the Tower up once more. It should be mentioned that Storming the Castle is the only battle he participated in and even so was immediately declared strongest.
- Before Phantaminum came, the title belonged to Enryu for being the only known person to kill a Guardian. People speculate both in-universe and out on which one is stronger.
- Homestar Runner has Pom Pom, as depicted in "The Homestar Runner Enters the Strongest Man in the World Contest". In the original book, he offered to share with Homestar, who was disqualified.
- Strong Mad isn't billed as "The Strongest Man in the World," but he's definitely one of, if not the, strongest people in the Homestar Runner universe. He can knock people halfway across Free Country, USA with one punch, and has also kicked a kickball so hard it flew all the way around the world and hit him from behind.
- The strongest man in the Global Guardians PBEM Universe was the aptly named Strength, a supervillain working for Tarot. During the entire run of the game, they never found an object too heavy for him to lift.
- Chuck "Memetic Mutation" Norris.
- Worm: Scion is the first and strongest superhero, so far beyond the rest that fights against the Endbringers almost always end up boiling down to "Hold the Line until Scion shows up to deliver a Curb-Stomp Battle." The next strongest three are known as the Triumvirate: Alexandria, the Flying Brick, Legend, the Flying Firepower, and Eidolon, who can choose any three powers at one time.
- ''He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983): He-Man, THE MOST POWERFUL MAN IN THE UNIVERSE!!!! His power-set is actually defined as being exactly as strong as he needs to be for any given task. Meaning that he'll alway be at least slightly stronger than anyone he fights, no matter how strong they are.
- His twin sister She-Ra probably counts as the World's Strongest Woman. And given that she spends most of her time on another planet she probably qualifies as the Strongest in Etheria regardless of gender.
- He-Man's completely insane feats of strength include:
- Pushing a moon out of orbit (which he's done twice).
- Pushing aside mountains.
- Reversing a tornado by swinging his sword in spirals fast enough to create a counter-vortex.
- Running in circles fast enough to create a vacuum in order to cause a waterspout.
- Drilling to the center of the planet with only a broken stalactite.
- Dragging a huge spaceship down to the ground with a grappling hook.
- One of his most dramatic feats may be this: Picking up Castle Greyskull and throwing it across half the continent.
- Popeye has reached this level when spinached up; even without it, he's pretty strong.
- Bam-Bam from The Flintstones is billed as the strongest baby in the world, and in later cartoons the strongest teen in the world.
- Marshal Bravestarr from Bravestarr.
- Rocky and Bullwinkle. While a moose rather than a man, Bullwinkle J Moose every so often performs feats of incredible strength, which he attributes to his "mighty moose muscle", or sometimes just "moose-le".
- In The Fairly OddParents: Timmy once wished to be the toughest guy on the beach - ergo, he'd be stronger than the toughest fellow to turn up on that beach. This was going fine and dandy until a whale beached itself.
- In Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra, the Avatar is regarded as the strongest bender on the planet no matter what, by virtue of having access to all the bending arts and the Avatar State.
- Toph and Bumi shared the status of being the strongest earthbenders in the world when they were both still alive. This is mainly because a duel between them ended in a draw.
- Amon/Noatak is arguably the strongest non-Avatar bender in the entire franchise. He was a prodigy waterbender and bloodbender, mastering his father's psychic bloodbending at the tender age of fourteen, and never lost an onscreen fight.
- The current record holder for an assisted bench press is Ryan Kennelly at 1,070 pounds.
- The World's Strongest Man, an annual competition taking place around Christmas time, pits strongmen from all over the shop in a very broad range of events designed to test all-round strength. Events vary from from traditional weight lifting to dragging, flipping, carrying, pushing, pulling, holding, throwing and otherwise manipulating incredibly heavy items such as tractor tyres, anvils, tractors, trains, cars, beer kegs, giant stone pillars, and the iconic Atlas Stones. The former page image was four time champion (and two time runner-up) Magnus ver Magnusson, whose name means "Big Guy Son of Big Guy who was the son of another Big Guy").
- American Olympian Paul Anderson was for a time credited for having lifted 6,270 pounds in 1957, earning him a reputation as the strongest man in the world. The Guinness Book of World Records later withdrew their recognition of the feat for some questionable circumstances.