Playing With / Bizarre Sexual Dimorphism

Basic Trope: A species' genders have extreme differences between them.
  • Straight: Male aliens from planet Troperia are small, muscular humanoids with disproportionately large arms. Females look like Human-like Green Skinned Space Babes.
  • Exaggerated: Female Troperians are regular Green Skinned Space Babes, while males are Energy Beings.
  • Downplayed: Male Troperians have larger arms than females, but are otherwise quite similar.
  • Justified:
    • Troperians evolved so that the males gather large amounts of materials in small caves, so being short and muscular was a trait acquired through natural selection, while females being taller allowed them to reach food in trees more easily.
    • Their hormones affect their appearance.
    • Sexual selection is to blame. note 
  • Inverted:
  • Subverted: Two characters, Aliice and Bohb, are a female and male Troperian respectively. Aliice is a Green-Skinned Space Babe, and Bohb is small with giant arms. The rest of the cast assumes that all Troperians are equally dimorphic. However, a visit to planet Troperia proves that this is not the case; Bohb is just deformed.
  • Double Subverted: The genders have extreme psychological differences; females are extremely aggressive and will kill anyone on sight, while males search for food and are non-violent.
  • Parodied: Female Troperians are green skinned space babes, while males are basically nothing more than giant writhing masses of genitalia and pulsating sacs of algae. Female Troperians are quick to point out how all men are scumbags that only think about sex, oddly enough.
  • Zig Zagged: A researcher attempts to find out which Troperians are male, and which are female. After much observation, he discovers the differences and similarities...only to be shot down again when a nearby tribe completely inverts what his notes say which gender is which. After even more observation, one Troperian who speaks the researcher's language tells him that "our entire species consists of hermaphroditic shape-shifters", rendering all of the researcher's notes moot.
  • Averted: Troperians genders are differenced by the same traits as humans.
  • Enforced: Male Troperians were first depicted with bulky animatronics. Female ones were manufactured but ended up defective. They were short on both time and budget so they had to substitute make up on an actress.
  • Lampshaded: "Are you two even the same species?"
  • Invoked: A Mad Scientist in creating an artificial species, purposefully gives both sexes vastly different physical characteristics.
  • Exploited: ???
  • Defied: Not applicable. (This trope is beyond the control of the characters.)
  • Discussed: ???
  • Conversed: Alice is watching Trope Trek and sees the alien of the week. She turns to Bob and says, "Wow, what did these guys evolve from? Anglerfish?"

Back to Bizarre Sexual Dimorphism