A piece of fan art for Narbonic made the distinctly non-badass Dave Davenport out like Bruce Willis. The non-canonical Sunday comics, which were used to have the characters show off fan art, fan fiction, and side stories, meant Dave got to directly see himself rendered as a badass, began demanding the comic change artists, and gave him a (somewhat implied, but outright mentioned once) canonical man-crush on Willis. Coincidentally, the comic's artist eventually married this fan artist. And Dave ultimately went on to become amazingly badass in a completely different, somewhat nerdy way.
O-Chul from The Order of the Stick has become one of these, along with a list of "O-Chul facts". To be fair, he did survive being tossed into a spiked tank with an acid-breathing shark in it, and (off-screen) won a Staring Contest against a basilisk...
He was tied up when thrown in, broke the ropes while he was impaled on the spike, punched the teeth out of the shark, was carried out of the tank by shark bite, and had enough hit points remaining to attack the evil mastermind.
He also wrote up a list of Xykon and Redcloaks spells, plus a partial list of feats and magic items for each. How? "One saving throw at a time."
"O-Chul is Chuck Norris' character."
- No, Chuck Norris is O-Chul's character in Real Life.
"O-Chul does not have a constitution score. Constitution has an O-Chul score."
And then he breaks out of his cage by kicking away a loose bar, snaps the bar off for a weapon, charges at Redcloak (a cleric of level 16 plus), takes a disintegrate to the FACE! (a spell that when cast by a lower level wizard, nearly takes out a dragon) then saves Vaarsuvius and helps get rid of Xykons phylactery. Later he gives Roy a partial list of Xykons' spells. How did he get this? "One saving throw at a time" He even befriended the Monster In the Darkness, nudging Xykon's strongest minion from evil by simply being a respectful friend.
"That Guy With A Halberd", a nameless Red Shirt type from the battle for Azure City who got his own fan thread in the forums as a social experiment and is rapidly growing to Memetic Badass status.
V's mate Inkyrius can beat anyone just by using a pointy stick.
In the universe of Girl Genius, the Heterodyne Boys are indubitably Memetic Badasses. In the fandom, it's probably Baron Klaus Wulfenbach. Who conquered Europe in a matter of months — uphill — both ways — in a zeppelin castle — with a lollipop-sucking baby on his back.
Let me tell you about Airman Higgs.... The man is.. well... at this point, he's almost an in-universe Memetic Badass. One of the Girl Genius forums has taken the next logical step; Airman Higgs facts. According to said facts, he participted in the Running of the Bulls and walked, cannot lose his hat even if it's knocked off, didn't get drunk after drinking 'lots of rum' because the alcohol didn't dare enter his bloodstream, won a staring contest against his own reflection, and bathes in Jaegerdraught, amongst other things.
A more villainous example would be sober Gamzee. He did more damage to the BlackKing in one hit than all the other trolls COMBINED, can use every single weapon with lethal efficiency, and got all the mooks to befriend him only after seeing how fucking horrifying he was when he wasn't on his sopor pies. It's also implied that he's killed EVERYONE in alternate timelines.
FedoraFreak, one of John's Dad's internet contacts, has survived the craziness of Sburb despite not being a player. His only appearances have been via one-sided message logs and a brief chat-log with another minor character. His current whereabouts are unknown, but it's implied that he has ascended to the God Tier.
Within a day of his debut and with maybe three panels and no speaking roles to his name at that point, Jake English became one very quickly. That he's an alternate universe version of the aforementioned Grandpa probably helps.
Keychain of Creation's Ten Winds. "JUSTICE!" Ten Winds made a permanent charm that lets him deal aggravated damage to anyone less badass than he is. He has never dealt bashing or lethal since. Ten Winds scared a pair of bandits so badly that it is likely that they will not stop fleeing until they end up in the Order of the Stick'' universe.
''Max Facepuncher can't wait for 2012 to get here, SO HE CAN KICK ITS ASS!!! He can punch a man so hard only his shoes are left, tear a man in half with his bare hands, can use a canoe as a melee weapon, and is actually what killed the dinosaurs. Don't believe me? Check his Twitter. Also, he could dodge INSTANT MURDER if he had to. And he's a champion boatfighter. As in fighting boats, not fighting on boats. Although he can also kick ass while on a boat as well.
From Questionable Content, we have Steve. He joined the U.S. Department of Kicking Your Ass. And won.
I am RICHARD! Chief Warlock of the Brothers of Darkness! Lord of the Thirteen Hells! Master of the Bones! Emperor of the Black! Lord of the Dead! And mayor of a little village up the coast. (Later pages would add Lord of the Dance and Mistress of Magma to his titles.)
In Wily's Defense gives us Freeze Man, a Crazy Awesome lunatic so badass that Satan lives in his head who goes by the name of BATMAN. He's so badass that his response to falling off a hundred story building was "Hello ground! Nice to see you again!".