- Unlikely Hero: A interesting characteristic common among the titular judges is how they go against the norm of expected hero tropes.
- Anti-Hero: Assassination isn't exactly what a white hat would do.
- Ninja: Ehud is probably the first known ninja in history.
- The Southpaw: A critical part of Ehud's assassination of King Eglon is accomplished by the fact he was left-handed. That let him sneak a sword into the palace, since Ehud's guard felt only his left side for a sword.
King Eglon of Moab
- Adipose Rex
- Fat Bastard
- Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Ehud's sword stuck to Eglon's fat belly.
- Undignified Death: The servants thought he was relieving himself.
"And I rose a mother in Israel".
- Action Girl: She got her job as judge/ruler by acting when the men would not.
- Animal Theme Naming: Her name means bee.
- Brains and Brawn: Deborah is the brains to Barak's Brawn; Without her at his side guiding him every step of the way, he wouldn't have gone to war.
- Iron Lady: She was nearly unstoppable in battle
- Lady of War: Again, how she got her job.
- The Smurfette Principle: Certainly not intentional, but she IS the only female Judge.
- Team Mom: See the quote. She's the team mom for the entire Jewish nation.
- Token Girl: Deborah is the only female judge; she took the job when no men were willing or able.
- Warrior Poet: Her and Barak celebrate the victory over Sisera and his army by breaking into song.
"Come and I shall show you the man you are looking for"
- Animal Theme Naming: Her name means "ibex."
- Guile Heroine: See below.
- Heroic Seductress: Some interpretations of the Hebrew word for "cover" portray Yael as one; the more innocent interpretation assumes she "covered" Siserah with a blanket and tucked him in before assassinating him, but many scholars interpret the word to mean she covered him with her body. Read: she had sex with him (no less than seven times!) until he was exhausted, then finished him off in his sleep.
- Improbable Weapon User: Tent pegs!
- More Deadly Than the Male: Tricks Sisera into trusting her, lulls him to sleep with warm milk, and then brutally drives a tent stake through his temples.
- Spell My Name with an "S": Is it spelled Jael or Yael?note
"If you will go with me, I also shall certainly go; but if you will not go with me, I shall not go."
- "Awesome McCool" Name: His name means "lightning".
- Brains and Brawn
- Cowardly Lion: Fears going to war without God's prophetess at his side
- The Aragorn: Takes second string to Deborah, but wins the battle.
- Warrior Poet: Sings with Deborah after the battle.
"You say that you have decided to use me to rescue Israel. Well, I am putting some wool on the ground where we thresh the wheat..."
- Offered the Crown: After the big battle he won with only 300 men.
- Really Gets Around: This trope almost has to be accurate if you have 71 sons. And that's not counting any daughters.
- A Real Man Is a Killer: Is goaded by Zebah and Zalmunnah into him putting them to death himself when his son Jether refuses to do the honors since he was still a youth, with the two saying, "As the man is, so is his strength."
- Refusal of the Call: Initially was skeptical and wanted God to prove He is who He says he is by "putting out a fleece".
- Shaming the Mob: Gideon's father saved him when he destroyed an altar to Baal.
- Think Nothing of It: Refuses to be king.
- Bastard Bastard: The son of another woman, he kills almost all his other legitimate brothers and has himself be elevated to the position of king.
- Better to Die than Be Killed: Tried to get his armor bearer to stab him so no one would know he was fatally wounded by a woman who dropped a rock on him.
- Massive Numbered Siblings: Owing to his father Gideon's many concubines, he had seventy half-brothers. Or, in his mind, seventy pretenders to his throne. He gets rid of (very nearly) all of them.
- Undignified Death: Is killed when a woman in Thebez drops a millstone on his head, and is also slain by one of his own soldiers to prevent anyone else from spreading the news that a woman killed him. Not that the latter helped.
- Young Conqueror: Fancied himself as Israel's first king, although God says otherwise. Ironic, given that his father, through whom he claimed his right to rule, was Offered the Crown and turned it down flat.
- Break Them by Talking: While he is better known for his rash vow to God, he's also notably the only Judge who tries to talk down his enemies first. He contests their claims that Israel has stolen their land using legal justifications and appeals to their sense of religion to be happy with what their god has given them. It fails, but he remains the only Judge who even attempted diplomacy.
- Didn't Think This Through: He made a spur-of-the-moment oath to God that he'd sacrifice the first thing that exited his house if the Lord gave him a victory. He won, and the first thing that stepped out was his daughter.
- Human Sacrifice: Literalist interpretations of the scripture contend that this is what he did to his daughter.
- Taking the Veil: The other prevailing interpreation is that the daughter was sent away to live as a virginal servant of God.
- Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Led a band of outlaws.
- Son of a Whore: He was kicked out of town for it.
- The Unfavorite: Being the son of a prostitute, his step-mother didn't like him.
"From this day I shall be blameless in what I do against the Philistines: For I will do you evils.
- Achilles' Heel: Samson loses all of his strength upon the loss of his hair.
- Awesome Mc Coolname: His name means "sun."
- Badass Israeli: He is the strongman of Jewish myth.
- Bond One-Liner: Upon killing one thousand men with a Donkey's jawbone, he made a pun on the fact that "donkey" and "heap" are homophones in Hebrew. Methods of translating this wordplay vary.
- Bond Villain Stupidity: The Philistines could've killed Samson easily after his hair was cut, but instead they blinded him, imprisoned him, and put him work grinding grain to humiliate him. They came to regret it.
- Breakout Character - He is the only Judge to have a movie made for him, among other things.
- Cherry Tapping: 1,000 kill count.....with a jawbone of an donkey.
- Driven to Suicide: And God helps him.
- Dying Moment of Awesome: "And Samson said, Let me die with the Philistines. And he bowed himself with all his might; and the house fell upon the lords, and upon all the people that were therein. So the dead that he slew at his death were more than they that he slew in his life."
- Establishing Character Moment - Telling his parents he will marry a Philistine woman.
- Explaining Your Power to the Enemy: Got a haircut out of it.
- Eye Scream: The Philistines stab out his eyes.
- Fake Weakness: He made up several of these to tell Delilah, after she asked the secret of his strength. Somehow he never figured out why, whenever he told her one, some Philistines would always try to use it on him...
- Fatal Flaw:
- See Love Makes You Dumb.
- And his drunkenness, which he God told him to avoid, gave Delilah the chance to cut his hair.
- Good Flaws, Bad Flaws: Despite his faults, the letter to the Hebrews still cite him a great hero for his faith in God, largely due to how he repents.
- Handicapped Badass: He is blinded by his enemies after being depowered, but he later kills them all for it.
- Half the Man He Used to Be: Gave this treatment to a random lion.
- Horrible Judge of Character: One wonders if he was one, considering he ended up having two traitorous wives...
- Hot-Blooded: And HOW
- Humiliation Conga: When the Philistines captured him, they blinded him, imprisoned him, and put him work grinding grain. They then brought him out to mock him, and have him perform for them. He gets the last laugh, though.
- Improbable Weapon User: Donkey jawbone. Enough said.
- Love Makes You Dumb: Delilah, you manipulative bitch, we read your book!
- MacGuffin: His hair. If his head is ever shaved, he loses his strength. This is perhaps a case of divine irony since not getting a haircut is the only Nazirite vow Samson has kept, the other two being not drinking and not touching a dead thing. He lost his strength not because he cut his hair but because he disobeyed God for the last time. He was also drunk when his hair was cut.
- Messianic Archetype: The subversion of the type. His birth is announced by an angel and raised a Nazirite (puritan Hebrew) yet broke its traditions simply because he was the Chosen One, his battles are more like the antics of a super powered college prankster and his motivation to finally beat the Philistines was personal revenge.
- Mr. Fanservice: Due to his strength, adaptations and art tend to portray him as well built.
- '90s Anti-Hero: Well, he sure wasn't The Cape.
- The Oathbreaker: As a Nazirite, he is not supposed to drink alcohol, touch a dead thing or cut his hair. By the end, none of these were kept.
- One-Man Army: In marked contrast to many of the other figures in Judges, who were military commanders.
- Person of Mass Destruction: Kinda. He did smash the two pillars of the Philistine temple, killing over 3000.
- The Plan: God blessing Samson was all part of the plan.
- Redemption Equals Death
- Red Herring: Delilah tries to find the reason for Samson's strength by asking him. He is less than helpful at first.
- Stellar Name: Means "Sun".
- Super Strength: The Jewish Archetype
- Taking You with Me: How his Redemption Equals Death happens.
- Too Dumb to Live: He eventually gives in to Delilah and tells her the secret of his strength, leading to his capture by the Philistines.
- Tragic Hero: Met the worst fate among the Judges.
- Touched by Vorlons: The reason for Samson's strength.
- Weaksauce Weakness: Everyone knows about his hair.
- Femme Fatale: see above
- The Dark Chick: And she doesn't HeelFace Turn later.
- The Vamp: This is how she is evil.
The other Judges (Othniel, Shamgar, Tola, Jair, Ibzan, Elon and Abdon)
- The Cavalry: Jair and Abdon had sons and grandsons who rode donkeys, making them excellent cavalry in the hill country
- Chosen One: God picked them personally.
- Improbable Weapon User: Shamgar's weapon was an ox goad. Or, basically, a sharpened stick designed to poke livestock and get them moving. Given that he killed 600 men with it, he must have been absurdly strong in his own right.
- Massive Numbered Siblings: Not perhaps to Gideon levels, but Ibzan is said to have had thirty sons and thirty daughters. It's also mentioned he found wives for each of his thirty sons, so his number of eventual grandchildren may have been very large indeed.