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Fat Bastard / Literature

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  • In Stephen King's Bag of Bones, custody lawyer Elmer Durgin is a Fat Bastard. He is also a lawyer, but main character Michael Noonan speculates that Durgin's physical appearance is responsible for his repugnant personality rather than his profession, identifying Durgin as a member of a sub-species he calls "Evil Little Fat Folks/Fucks". Noonan says that most fat people are generally nice, but the Evil Little Fat Folks are naturally hateful (especially toward people who are physically fit) and bent on world domination.
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  • Thinner: Deconstructed. Billy Halleck is a seemingly nice guy with a good marriage and is a doting father (his daughter in fact prefers Billy to her mother). However, he is clearly aware of his firm's tie to The Mafia, and is in fact good friends with a man who may be the head of the local mob family. After the accident, he doesn't deliberately use his connections to get him out of trouble, but he does nothing to dissuade them either. There is blame enough to go around, but no one is willing to accept the consequences for their actions.
  • Billy Bunter of Greyfriars has got to be one of the archetypes for this trope, having made his first appearance in 1908 and becoming so well-known that his name was long used in the UK as an insult for real life Fat Bastards. Comically greedy, snobbish, dishonest, inept, self-centred, lazy, stupid, mean, cowardly and always, always on the scrounge, he provided the perfect foil for his upright and honest classmates and became so popular that he eventually took on the title role for the series.
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  • Dennis Nedry from Jurassic Park. Arnold even refers to him as such.
  • Harry Potter
    • The male Dursleys, particularly Dudley. Indeed, in Dudley's introductions in the first book, Rowling spends nearly as much time going over how fat he is as she does over his actual bullying of Harry.

      Rowling did eventually apparently become uncomfortable with how she was using this trope to equate evil with being overweight, and eventually gave Dudley enough physical training for him to be a competent boxer (though he's still "vast as ever"). Then in the last book Dudley turns out to be halfway decent at the last second, and is merely described as "muscular."
    • Peter Pettigrew, evil murderous traitor extraordinaire, is described as having been fat or 'chubby' in his youth, though when they first see him as an adult he has the look of 'having lost a great deal of weight in a short amount of time' which is equally unflattering.
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    • Umbridge is described as squat and toadlike from her first appearance in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix to her last in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
  • Terry Pratchett lampshades this in Going Postal, where one of the chairmen at the Grand Trunks Company is described as fat, multi-chinned and having a grating voice and an expression like a piglet, and a footnote says that it's stereotypical to say that someone like that couldn't be a kind and generous man, like it's stereotypical to say a man in a striped shirt coming in through your window in the middle of the night is a burglar.
  • Matilda's mother is a female version. Her father is this in the movie. The Trunchbull is another female version.
  • Animal Farm may have Napoleon be this. It does make sense since he's a pig.
  • Basu, The Morbidly Obese Ninja from the novel of the same name by Carlton Mellick III. when he was lean he was the deadliest ninja in town, after he reached 700 pounds of weight, he also became the meanest. post-character development he's more a Fat Bastard with a heart of gold.
  • Dune: Baron Harkonnen's girth is used alongside his sexual deviancy and torture of slaves to emphasize how disgusting a person he is.
    • That's got to be justified. The man weighed 200 kilograms (441 pounds) but could only support 1/4 of that by muscle-power without anti-gravity suspensors. While there are certainly active people who reach that weight, they also develop the body/muscular structure to support it. To be immobilized by his fat at that size, he would probably have needed to eat SO much that he gained weight too quickly for his body to adapt, for a long period of time, and intentionally compensated for it with antigravs rather than making any effort to carry his own bulk.
    • It is also implied that the excessive weight gain is a symptom of a hereditary disease common to the Harkonnen. Rabban is stated to be approaching the Baron's girth, while Feyd-Rautha keeps it in check through his... rigorous physical training program. Neither of these is any less of a monster, though.
    • The prequels explained that the Baron was originally an exceptionally fit man, in fact fairly obsessive and vain about it. But then one day he was blackmailed into siring a child (Jessica) with a Bene Gesserit and decided to have a little fun with it at her expense. She in turn took the opportunity to tweak his body chemistry a bit.
  • Augustus Gloop from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Like all the kids in the book he's an Anvilicious Aesop, in his case about gluttony. Alongside avarice, sloth, and... gum-chewing. Hmm.
    • Same with Bruno Jenkins from The Witches, an entitled little jerk who enjoys frying ants with his magnifying glass and bragging about his wealthy father. The titular antagonists lure him with food and transform him into a mouse. Even in this state, Bruno continues his gluttonous ways and is no help to the narrator.
  • Early in the Star Wars Expanded Universe, Warlord Zsinj was an enemy of the New Republic and one of the very few humans in Star Wars described as overweight at all. His portrayal in The Courtship of Princess Leia showed him as venal, highly evil, self-important, and very, very stupid. His successes seem to be all related to the size of his fleet and the programs his scientists set up. The X-Wing Series Ret Cons this, making Zsinj still fat and faintly ridiculous, still highly evil, but also very, very smart, and deliberately cultivating a slightly absurd image that he knows smart people can see past, but he likes playing to an audience.
    • Hutts, which are specifically said to be lithe and muscular when young and become progressively more obese as they grow older and gather more power, are almost universally disgusting. Almost. There's some record that a Hutt was once a very fair and very popular Chancellor of the Republic.
      • There is also a subversion in at least one Hutt Jedi, who is implied to get more powerful in the force as he gets fatter, presumably because he has more life force, or something.
      • The Hutts in general are one of the few races that are immune to the "mind tricks" of the Jedi or Sith, indicating perhaps a naturally strong connection to the force as a species trait.
      • Wait - fat, toadlike, powerful telekenetics? The Old Ones were Jedi!!
    • There's also the Toydarians, who are related to Hutts, are almost as bastardly, and they all have big guts. Though, as extra materials point out, their guts aren't filled with fat, but helium. Which explains why such a being can fly around on those puny wings. Fatness may be the least of their unfortunate stereotyping.
    • Another fat bastard human featured in Tatooine Ghost - one of Leia's fellow survivors of Alderaan is fat enough to need a hoverchair. He's small-time compared to the other bad guys in the fic, but a greedy wretch nonetheless.
    • Splinter of the Mind's Eye has a villain whose physical description includes this line.
      [...] he stood to reveal a modest paunch curving gently from beneath his sternum like a frozen waterfall of suet, to crash and tumble somewhere below the waistline in a jumble of uniform.
  • Masks of Aygrima has The Fat Man who is in charge of kids who fail their masking, he forces the girls to pose while he draws them so he can sell the drawing later, ironically out of the villains that don't pull a Heel–Face Turn, he's the second nicest.
  • This trope is closely examined in Robin Hobb's The Soldier Son trilogy. After Nevare grows extremely fat as a side effect of a disease, he notices how people's attitudes towards him have changed drastically to the worse. People who haven't even talked to him make fun of his size in his presence, and some are even openly hostile. He has to prove to those he meets that he isn't a bastard, because they tend to assume he is.
  • Inverted by Harold Lauder in The Stand, at least in the novel. Harold is a sympathetic character while a fat nerd—it's only after he loses weight, becomes moderately attractive, and gains a few levels of competence outside of bookish pursuits that he does a Face–Heel Turn.
  • The Bible describes the assassination of a very fat king named Eglon who leaks excrement when he is stabbed. He oppressed the Israelites for eighteen years, which perhaps explains why this particular detail was included by those who wrote the account.
    • On the Israelites' side, there was Eli the priest, who did not restrain his sons Hophni and Phinehas from their abuse of their priestly duties regarding the sacrifices and their sleeping with women who assembled at the door of the Temple of the Lord, but merely gave them a slap on the wrist for doing so. Regarded as a heavy man who got fat from the sacrifices that his sons have taken from the altar, he died when news was brought to him that his two sons died in a battle against the Philistines and that the Ark of the Covenant was taken.
    • In the Book of Amos, the wealthy women of Samaria, which was part of the northern kingdom of Israel during the two-kingdoms part of Israel's existence as a nation, were referred to as "cows of Bashan" for using their self-indulgent lifestyles to oppress the poor, crush the needy, and demand that their husbands always bring them drinks.
  • The Ancestress, an early villain in Bridge of Birds. Li Kao recalls her as a beautiful, scheming concubine who butchered all of her rivals and their children, then had the Emperor murdered and set herself up as a regent over her weak-willed son for years, where her extravagance ran the empire into the ground; her son got blamed and subsequently executed in a coup, while she retired to a life of luxury. By the time we see her, however, she has gained two hundred pounds out of overindulgence. When she finally meets her end, in a gruesome manner typical to this series, she is described as blundering around the room crushing her own guards with her monstrous weight while Henpecked Ho pursues her with an axe.
  • Tim Powers uses this villain archetype in several of his novels — Leo Friend in On Stranger Tides and Loretta deLarava in Expiration Date are both described as extremely, grotesquely fat. The villain of Dinner at Deviant's Palace, who hasn't stirred from his sanctum in years, is so fat that on first sight the protagonist mistakes him for a leather beanbag chair.
  • In Robert E. Howard's Conan the Barbarian story "The Phoenix on the Sword", Ascalante sneers at one of the nobles who thought they had hired him as "the fat baron of Attalus."
  • A few of the antagonists from the Sherlock Holmes short stories such as Jephro Rucastle from "The Copper Beeches", Charles Augustus Milverton from the story witht the same name, and Blessington (or Sutton) from "The Resident Patient".
  • A Song of Ice and Fire'':
    • Strong Belwas, who is a fat ex-gladiator. Although he's a stone cold killer on Dany's side, so that arguably makes him Grey in a world of Black And Black Morality.
    • A Song of Ice and Fire is filled with this trope. There's Yezzan zo Qaggaz, an extremely wealthy slave owner who is called (behind his back) the Yellow Whale for his yellow eyes and the fact that he is so obese that he cannot stand unassisted. Ser Amory Lorch isn't as fat as him, but still quite fat. Magister Illyrio is morbidly obese and seems to be decidedly amoral.
    • However, this trope is subverted with Lord Wyman Manderly, who is another morbidly obese person and while he's on the side of the Starks, he's moraly ambiguous to say the least.
      • This trope is also somewhat subverted by the above-mentioned Yezzan zo Qaggaz. Although one of the foremost slavers in an extremely brutal slaver society, he also happens to be one of the lesser evils among the slavers, arguing that Yunkai should not break a peace treaty while others hope for the riches that will come with sacking Meereen and apparently taking better care of his slaves than most. Well, aside from occasionally sending them out to be fed to lions or having his slave girls raped by giants for his amusement. Yeah.
    • Ramsay Bolton teeters on the edge of this (only for the "fat" part, as he fits every definition of "bastard") - he's a huge, big-boned brute with a thick, fleshy face, and is described as looking like he will be fat in later life. It appears the only reason he isn't obese is that he's still young enough and leads an active enough lifestyle that his metabolism keeps his weight down.
    • Robert Baratheon isn't exactly an evil man, but he's still a morbidly obese hedonist, an incompetent king, a neglectful father, and a terrible husband (though his wife is just as vicious to him in return). Robert was a better man in his youth, but he really let himself go physically and morally after losing Lyanna Stark and being stuck with a throne and a wife he didn't want.
  • The Big Bad of book 1 and 2 of Detectives in Togas.
  • A Confederacyof Dunces: Ignatius Jacques Reilly is a fat, obnoxious, over-educated Manchild who still lives with his widowed mother at age thirty.
  • Kalchan, Skif's cousin in Take a Thief, is described as having rolls of fat bulging over his waistband. He's physically abusive to Skif (and sexually abusive to the underage server Maisie.)
  • In the original Sleepover Club books, one of the girls' enemies was an overweight school bully named Amanda Porter, known to them as "Fatty Bum-Bum." They explained that although they usually disapproved of calling people cruel names, they make an exception for Amanda because she was so cruel to everyone else.
  • Vassily Zhukovsky, head of the Russian Mob in Los Angeles, in Mr Blank and its sequel is nicknamed "The Whale." He is not a svelte man.
  • Laman Griffin in Angela's Ashes. He is Angela's overweight cousin who forces her to sleep with him, makes Frank empty his piss pot and sloppily eats chips while refusing to share them with any of Angela's kids — they have to lick the newspaper he throws out because they are so hungry.
  • Journey to Chaos: Tahart Ligo is an orc so "heavily muscled" that he can't bend over and clip his own toenails. He's not Nice to the Waiter, or anyone else for that matter. In fact, he attempts to rape his temporary maid and then bribe her rescuer into looking the other way. When Eric refuses, Tahart decides to eat him instead
  • Dennis Nedry in Jurassic Park, who sabotages the park's security system, releasing several very dangerous dinosaurs while he steals embryos to sell to a rival company...until he gets eaten by a Dilophosaurus. He's not too different in the movie.
  • Clear Sky from Warrior Cats: Dawn of the Clans describes Tom as very plump. He's [Tom] also a complete and total asshole.
  • In The Divine Comedy, the soul of Peter Damian contrasts the lean and scrappy apostles with the contemporary, corrupt cardinals who have grown so plump that they need a beast and three attendants to move anywhere.
  • Zigzagged in Ratburger: Sheila the stepmother plays this trope straight: she's evil and described as "spherical". Tina Trotts has a fat tummy and starts off The Bully but eventually reforms and Raj is also quite chubby but he's a very nice man.
  • The Wheel of Time: Subverted with Laras, the Mistress of the Kitchens at the White Tower. Although a stern taskmistress, she refuses to inflict any unjust or excessive punishment and looks after people who need help. When a Tyrant Takes the Helm of the Tower, she lets the new ruler mistake her for a Fat Idiot and smuggles several prisoners to safety.
  • Lord Infante from Twig is a morbidly obese, Faux Affably Evil man who's also the highest-ranking representative of the Crown in the Crown States. His preferred method of dealing with enemies is to either Break Them by Talking or calmly walk up to them while their attacks bounce off the augmentations hidden in his body and then brutally murder them. When he gets bored of fighting the rebellion he's supposed to be dealing with, he decides to spread Grey Goo throughout the entire continent, let it consume both rebel and loyal Crown citizen alike, and then come back later with new citizens to repopulate the wasteland.


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