Juliet: From awesome!
Sometimes a character is so overflowing with the awesome that they don't actually have to do anything for it. They are not just awesome; they kind of have awesomeness as a power. All they have to do is walk into the room, or in in the most extreme cases, stand there. Their mere existence radiates an effect of awesomeness that causes tangible physical harm to their enemies and makes men and women fall in love with them. All anyone else can do is watch.
"Whoa... Dude, that guy is awesome..."
"What do you mean? He isn't doing anything — whoa, he is awesome..."
Characters can be made of it. Groups can be made of it. Scenes can be made of it. Entire movies can be made of it. If awesomeness as a force didn't exist, how could anything ever be so cool it can be used as a laxative?
This trope (in case the multiple uses of the word "awesome" as if it has an objective meaning didn't tip you off) is by its very nature almost completely irrational and often used for comedy. Do not try to ruminate over the meaning of this trope. Either accept the physical manifestation of Rule of Cool or watch a more logical show.
Not to be confused with something awesome happening off-screen, where the awesomeness's effect was probably justified by something tangible actually happening.
- Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann takes this pretty far:
- Gurren Lagann (piloted by Simon and Viral) arrives just in time to save the day. All nearby enemies are destroyed by the awesomeness of its arrival.
- Spiral Energy in general allows the heroes' hot-bloodedness to manifest as anything from giant drills to galaxy-sized robots. Essentially, Pure Awesomeness surpasses all known laws of physics. Which is why the Anti-Spirals are against the use of Spiral Energy: eventually, the universe will be literally incapable of holding so much awesome and, as such, will collapse.
- Kongoh Bancho invokes this trope in front of every normal person he meets.
- In One Piece, especially powerful individuals can strike weaker ones unconscious with their mere presence, through the power of "Haki" (Ambition). Two other types of Haki (that can be learned) enable users to gain split-second precognition and harden their defenses or strengthen attacks to harm immaterial or Haki-using enemies, but only one in a million inherently awesome people can use the Conqueror's Haki.
- Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple does this on occasion such as this instance, which actually knocks Kenichi unconscious, just because his masters are that awesome. Sakaki, in particular, is able to utilize the power of awesomeness. In Chapter 18 he makes a charging delinquent stop and fall on his butt retreating just by looking at him, and in Chapter 30 he apparently shoots a Hadouken from his fist (probably just a visual representation of the force of his punch).
- In Naruto, a number of strong ninjas, like Zabuza, Orochimaru, and Sasuke with Orochimaru's power, are capable of giving off a "killing intent" so strong that it paralyzes weaker enemies, despite apparently not being an actual jutsu of any kind. This is taken to ridiculous levels with the First Hokage, who can literally cause the room he's standing in to crack just by flaring his chakra.
- Medaka Box has Hinokage Kudo, whom no one knows, remembers, or even notices despite his large size. Why does no one notice him? Because he's so damn powerful people subconsciously repress the memory of his existence out of absolute fear. His unnotability has not earned him the nickname "Mr. Unknown." He hasn't earned this nickname 'cos no one knows who he is and therefore can't address him as anything in the first place. Except Zenkichi for some weird reason.
- In Rose of Versailles the protagonist Oscar meets a young Napoleon Bonaparte. She is terrified of him for no rational reason, and demands to know who he is. Seems that she subconciously recognizes him as a Future Badass supreme.
- In Hunter × Hunter, Nen users can kill non-users through sheer force of
- Gildarts from Fairy Tail has this and it brings Natsu to tearsnote .
- Played for laughs in Kaitou Saint Tail: when Asuka jr. bragged he had been assigned to capture Saint Tail by the mayor himself and Rina shouldn't butt in, her pointing out she's the mayor's niece caused her to be surrounded by an aura of awesomeness that blinded the presents.
- Bleach: Spiritual beings exert reiatsu on their surroundings, which is capable of bringing people to their knees or killing if intense enough. Most individuals need to consciously intensify such power, even if it looks like they're not doing anything, but some people do it passively or can't even stop it. The most notable example is Primera Espada Coyote Starrk, who was always lonely (even going so far as to split himself into two people, Starrk and Lilynette, just so he wouldn't be alone anymore) because his reiatsu was so strong every Hollow going near him simply died.
- Cosmo sometimes works like this in Saint Seiya. Prime offenders would, of course, include Gods whose mere presence and aura will paralyze anyone and repel attacks, but even main characters can be included, such as Phoenix Ikki whose mere aura can slap silly some enemies and more, but the clearest instance of this is when a wounded and armor-less Seiya is cornered by three Silver Saints, about to be killed, when the Sagittarius Gold Cloth comes to his rescue covers his body for the first time. This prompts a Mass "Oh, Crap!" for every enemy involved on the scene, followed by a Cosmo discharge that gives the three Silver Saints (not the weakest ones either) a Curb-Stomp Battle.
- In Fist of the North Star, Raoh has a few such moments, with the mere presence of his emissaries sending his enemies in despair and lifting the morale of his loyal subjects. One defining moment was when some mutinuous soldiers of his were attacking terrified civilians that lived in his domain after hearing of his death, then Raoh appeared and the civilians started cheering while the mutineers lined up and kneeled for their execution, without him having to say anything or do anything more beyond a single slap (strong enough to behead the victim, but still a single slap).
- The drama and excitement already present in the Ace Attorney games is turned Up to Eleven in the anime adaptation Gyakuten Saiban: Sono Shinjitsu, Igiari!, where slamming on a desk or pointing your finger at someone can cause gales of wind inside the courtroom.
- Happens during the final battle of Macross II: in the middle of his Villainous Breakdown, Ingues is having his own ships self-destruct without the crew, be them Marduk or their enslaved Zentraedi, daring to defend themselves when Earth's two last Macross Cannon ships fire on his Planet Spaceship. They don't do any real damage, only shaking it... But just that happening to the invincible ship of their divine lord is enough to prompt the Marduk to fight back and wipe him out.
- Hellblazer - In issue #250, a large goat humanoid demon pins the protagonist John Constantine. All John did was to look at it, and it spontaneously exploded due to obvious badass reasons.
- In The Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye, we meet a race of aliens called "Personality Ticks", parasites who feed upon the charisma of those with extroverted personalities. They are defeated when Rodimus and Megatron are called, and the sheer presence the two of them have basically caused the ticks to overdose on awesome and die just from them entering the room.
- Nowadays, Paperinik (Donald Duck's superhero/antihero alter ego) is so feared by most of Duckburg's criminals that when they're caught in the act they have a little chat before taking their tools and all the evidence and giving themselves up to the police. The few who don't are from out of town (and learn quickly to do the same), supervillains who actually have a shot at beating him, or the Beagle Boys.
- Scrooge McDuck. He was so awesome that he scared the living daylights out of Wyatt Earp during his goldrush days already, and broke Earp by just slinging around with his number one dime.
- In the One-Punch Man fanfic The Strongest Hero Saitama's immense strength is acknowledged by the world. As a result, pretty much all villains and monsters give up as soon as they see him, as shown by the Brain and Brawn Brothers ending their rampage and surrendering because they saw him without him even noticing. The only exceptions are those who, for whatever reason, don't know of him, such as the Sea Folk (who lived on the bottom of the ocean and anyway believed themselves superior to any surface dweller), lord Boros and his Dark Matter Space Pirates (aliens from outer space), and Sonic (who somehow never heard of him, and stubbornly remains willing to face him even after finding out who the bald guy who punched him in the crotch was).
- TRON: Legacy:
- During the battle at the End Of Line club, the good guys are getting thoroughly trounced by Clu's Black Guards. At least until Kevin Flynn walks into the room, kneels and touches the floor. Simply being there is enough for Kevin to completely turn the tide, thanks to his Physical God status in the Grid, by being a User with possession of the master disk.
- As they are leaving, several programs are shown on their knees, praying, and Kevin Flynn walking out, holding his hands in a Christ-like manner.
digitalcrypt: As someone who has worked in IT and software for two decades, it is one of my favorite moments in any movie, anywhere. Little collections of ones and zeros think they can go off and misbehave how they want and have their fun...and along comes a human: "I think that's enough chaos for today." :-) (Too bad the job isn't always THAT easy. But the end result is the same, even if it takes a lot more time and work sometimes.) ;-)
- A somewhat subtler form of this exists in The Lord of the Rings and The Silmarillion. Middle-Earth, in general, was heavily inspired by folklore and heroic sagas. The characters' abilities have less to do with tangible physical characteristics like strength, endurance or skill and more to do with more amorphous concepts such as "might" or "countenance." Hence, the greatest elves of the elder days could stand against balrogs and dragons simply because they possessed the might to do so. The actual tactics and details of the battles were irrelevant, the outcome was decided by a direct conflict of might.
- In one nice example, Finrod and Sauron "duel in songs of power." Finrod does pretty well for himself, but in the end, Sauron wins.
- The Wheel of Time has the Ta'veren, who bend probability and to some extent even reality, just by existing. The Dragon Reborn, the strongest Ta'veren in the whole of the reincarnating Pattern, eventually becomes able to do it intentionally.
- In an interlude for Brandon Sanderson's Words of Radiance, Lift describes her use of Stormlight this way. Her spren, who is an extremely serious scholarly gardener, is very annoyed at this.
Wyndle: It is called surgebinding. You use your investiture to—
Lift: No. It's because I'm awesome.
- When she's later confronted by an Inspector Javert type who's been hunting her, and she realizes he's using powers, her reaction is essentially "He's awesome too? No fair!"
- Classical Chinese philosophy discusses a concept known as de (德) which is usually translated "inherent character; inner power; integrity" in Daoism, "moral character; virtue; morality" in Confucianism, and "quality; virtue" (guna) or "merit; virtuous deeds" (punya) in Chinese Buddhism. However the actual description of the effects of de, particularly in the most ancient (i.e. pre-Confucian and pre-Buddhist) contexts include de's ability to instil a sense of awe or submission in other people; an amoral and innate quality of leadership, awesomeness or effectiveness that can occur as often or as easily in an evil person as in a good person, and is therefore more like "charisma", "awesomeness", "being chosen" or "being set above others". Later artistic depictions of the quality of de show historical figures of great power and merit subduing barbarian hordes or wild beasts with a mere glance, or even with sheer aloofness.
- Montel Vontavious Porter was half man, half amazing and one half the tag team champions. The only man amazing enough to have three halves.
- When asked in Ybor Florida to describe Heidi Lovelace, Solo Darling used non-descriptive terms, such as "She's about this awesome," and gestured with her arms as if it was a physical trait like height...and people immediately realized whom she was talking about.
- Really, anytime the entrance theme of someone particularly notable plays, especially during something like the Royal Rumble or a similar big match. Doesn't matter if they're old or young, big or smallnote , heel or face... they usually have the power to stop a match with their sheer presence, and that's often before they even enter the room. Just ask guys like Big Show or Big Daddy Cool Diesel.
- In the 3rd edition of Dungeons & Dragons, many powers have the mechanical effect of bolstering allies or hindering enemies through the awesomeness of the power or the character using it.
- The Exemplar class lets you pick one skill which can be used to impress people, in a manner so awesome that everyone in 60 ft becomes undyingly loyal to him.
- Warhammer 40,000:
- It overflows with characters that through their sheer presence can invigorate allies to near-invincibility, render enemies catatonic with fear or anything in between, ranging from Tau Ethereals (members of the ruling class), Space Marine Chaplains (Super Soldier Badass Preachers), and fiery incarnations of the Eldar god of War and Murder.
- And then there's Creed, tactical genius, who can use his awesomeness to hide a Baneblade on open ground. Partially through camouflage, mostly through badassery. And the orks get this a lot.
- This is essentially how the "presence attack" mechanic in the Hero System works for characters with a high enough Presence stat (basically charisma). Presence attacks take no time and don't really require the character to do anything else — although the right kinds of supplemental actions certainly help — and can make other people hesitate, stop what they're doing to listen, or at the highest levels of effect outright surrender, faint, or be inspired to instant loyalty, all from the character's sheer awesome force of personality alone.
- Similar to the above, Exalted has the Presence skill and its associated special techniques. A Zenith Caste can make armies too awestruck to attack. Actually, almost everything the Solar Exalted do is a case of Awesomeness Is a Force.
- Anima: Beyond Fantasy features the Style skill, which is basically a measure of how awesome a character is. The example the book gives as a use for the skill is having thunder crash in time with your strikes while fighting during a thunderstorm.
- Billy Vs SNAKEMAN:
- If a player manages to obtain trophies (ranging in difficulty from completing low-level plotlines to beating an insanely difficult, once a week minigame eleven times), Awesome points are given out which can be spent on bonus abilities. Also, certain levels of awesome are required for some quests.
- In the game's story, Awesome is ninja culture's name for the metaphysical source of free will.
- In Fate/stay night, the mere presence of the Servants has a little bit of this. And when a character like Lancer gets serious, the pure awesome makes both you and the air freeze in fear. The most extreme example of this is Gilgamesh, who nearly makes Shirou shit himself without even showing any killing intent. Justified in the fact that Gilgamesh is one of the most powerful beings in the Nasuverse and can defeat Berserker without even trying and is in possession of a weapon capable of Earth-Shattering Kabooms.
- The characters of Sengoku Basara regularly cause huge explosions from the presence of their sheer manly awesomeness. Yes, even the women.
- From Kid Icarus: Uprising, the Sun God:
Pyron: "I can't hear you over all this awesome!"
- Tales of Zestiria has domains as a big part of the story. They're basically magic background fields where the person generating them creates a form of sympathetic magic. A sufficiently powerful being could completely change the flow of battle just by showing up.
- DMK is finally defeated at the end of the MS Paint Adventures series Problem Sleuth, solely due to the eponymous character's glowing personal charm. Sepulchritude, the most powerful attack in the whole comic, runs on awesome.
- King Radical's secret master plan in The Adventures of Dr. McNinja turns out to hinge on this. He's trying to make the Doctor's universe too awesome for lame people to exist, thus sacrificing them to summon refugees from the dying Radical Lands.
- In one strip of DM of the Rings, Gandalf staff is said to give him +2 to Awesome.
- Suburban Knights has many instances of parodying this - the reviewers find they can do amazingly awesome things just because the character they're role-playing as (and in one case the actor playing the character they are role-playing as) possesses some form of Pure Awesomeness.
- It's broadcasted on Channel Awesome.
- According to Tobuscus' Literal Trailer for Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, this is how Ezio kills a guard (it's actually an arrow that's just barely shown, but Rule of Funny).
Guard says, "Stop," / Just kill him with your awesome.
- In AH Dot Com The Series, Super 55 and The King are characters of this type.
- A recurring theme in Shack Tactical videos, with regards to Dslyecxi. When he's around (particularly, flying a CAS helicopter), he inspires a vague sense of safety. If the helicopter is shot down, it's immediately replaced with despair. If he's on the enemy team and believed to be nearby, it's palpable dread. And if he's ever captured, there is literally no such thing as a sufficient number of guards. And it's all absolutely justified.
- Common when people achieve a certain degree of celebrity status, such as music stars. People used to lose their shit over Michael Jackson just standing on stage. And before him, Elvis. And before him, Frank Sinatra. Sinatra's early career subverted this, as the girls in his audience who were really, really losing their shit and fainting in the aisles were hired plants put there to create hype.
- A group of men once tried to rob a house, tying up the owner's wife. After taking one look at a picture of the owner, they dropped everything, untied her and ran. This needs reiteration. They didn't even see the woman's husband. They saw a picture of him. And you can bet those men are spending the rest of their lives in a state of pure terror. Who was in the picture? Dolph Lundgren.
- Back when Italy was still divided between various countries, a group of pro-unification patriots led by Carlo Pisacane landed in the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies and tried to start an insurrection only to be lynched by the people. Years later Giuseppe Garibaldi tried the same... And started the insurrection by asking the Sicilians to rise up in arms. He would also justify the Kingdom of Sardinia, later the Kingdom of Italy, effectively taking over most of what is now Italy just by existing, as they were the only ones capable of keeping him from a repeat performance.
- After escaping from his first exile, Napoleon arrived in France with 700 soldiers. As he marched to Paris, the numbers of his troops swelled from veterans joining him during the route and the regiments sent to arrest him mass-deserting the moment they actually saw him or received a letter asking to join him. The only regiment that actually came close to try and arrest him was the one he met at Grenoble, and those dropped their weapons when Napoleon dismounted his horse, came within gun range and told them "If any of you will shoot his Emperor, here I am".