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Boisterous Bruiser

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This trope is OUTRAGEOUS, old chum!

"Now... let me see what a president looks like... HE GOT TWO ARMS! TWO LEGS! HE'S JUST LIKE US! HAHAHAHA!"
Dablone, Escape 2000

A common character in RPGs and action shows, the Boisterous Bruiser is a fun guy to be around. He will often be part of an ensemble and will most likely be The Big Guy in The Team (specifically, their Class 3), although he tends to be a bit more boisterous than the usual archetype who plays that role. If he's not The Idiot from Osaka, he will at least tend to act bumpkin-ish and crude. If he's as dumb as he is big, he will at least have had enough life experience to dispense sage and world-wise advice to the Kid Hero whenever he needs it.

He — since female Boisterous Bruisers are quite rare — will usually not be part of a formal army (unless serving under a Kid Hero). More often the Bruiser is a mercenary-for-hire or the leader of a band of thieves. Or the leader of a band of pirates. Or the leader of freedom fighters. Or all four at once. If he's an anime character, he will inevitably have a Kansai accent, and will often be Hot-Blooded and use ore-sama as his personal pronoun. He's like a really obnoxious but likable Supporting Leader. He's almost always a Large Ham.

He may start out as an antagonist or as some kind of obstacle to our heroes, but he will usually be charmed into joining the heroes' side after witnessing their courage and determination, or he may just decide to throw in with them if he likes their style or if both sides have a mutual enemy. On occasion, though, the hero must outwit or even outfight the Bruiser first, but then Defeat Equals Friendship will come into play.

If he happens to be some sort of formal ruler or king, he will act in an extremely informal way. He will also tend to be loud, brash, filled with bravado, and (if it's a live-action production)... played by BRIAN BLESSED.

He will spend most of his off-time at the tavern, partying hard, knocking back tankards of ale or cups of sake, and getting into fights. The Straight Man and The Smart Guy will find him annoying or scary, but everyone else will think he's a total hoot, and these three will probably warm up to him anyway. His tales of his prowess can be a little exaggerated, but those who assume he is all talk will have a surprise coming. He tends to laugh often, and is rather fond of giving rookies a hard time or playfully patting weaker characters on the back with enough force to send them flying across the room. (The Naïve Newcomer may not realize his strength because he does not look like a bodybuilder; Stout Strength is common.) He might show affection through bone-crushing Bear Hugs.

He will rub a lot of people the wrong way, but he's such a good fighter that most of his comrades will tolerate his foibles. He will usually pull Tank Duty if he's part of an RPG combat party and in large formal battles, he will often split off from the main party and start mowing down enemies by the hundreds (an action which may or may not anger his superiors). But there's really no telling him what to do. He plays fast and free by his own rules and most people are okay with him (although they'd be even more okay with him if he drank less, stopped getting into fights, didn't leave his dirty laundry everywhere, and stopped hurling insults at people).

If his melancholies are as gigantic as his mirths, see also Emotional Bruiser. If someone has the size and personality with some extra paunch, see Big Fun.

A Sub-Trope of Chewing the Scenery.

Compare the Friendly Sniper (with Improbable Aiming Skills instead of physical strength), Keet (the less macho counterpart).

Contrast the Boisterous Weakling, who talks the talk but cannot walk the walk.

Example Subpages:

Other Examples:

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    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • Tank in An Extremely Goofy Movie. He's the biggest character in the entire series, being large and strong enough to dwarf and pick up resident Gentle Giant PJ, and is very loud, confident, and tough. He is introduced as the right-hand man to local Jerk Jock, Bradley Uppercrust III but at the end of the movie he has sided with the protagonist, Max, instead, because Bradley left him to die and Max saved him.
  • Tangled: The thugs at the Snugly Duckling turn out to be a likable bunch who have a collective sensitive side, while at the same time are still a pack of violent oafs.
    Hook-Hand: Though I do like breakin' femurs
    You can count me with the dreamers
    Like everybody else, I've got a dream!
  • Thanks to its 'Scottish legend' backdrop, almost every adult male character in Brave is a Boisterous Bruiser. Stand by for Ham-to-Ham Combat.
  • Baloo in Disney's The Jungle Book and TaleSpin.
  • Pumbaa in The Lion King during Simba's Hakuna Matata phase.
  • The Super Mario Bros. Movie's version of Donkey Kong is shown to be as powerful a fighter as he is a showboating braggart, much to his father's consternation. He beats up Mario with no effort and introduces himself with the aforementioned showboating, going as far as to do a Pec Flex that gets on his father's nerves.
  • Captain Silver from Treasure Planet, an alien of the Ursid race, certainly counts. He's huge, built like a bear with a heavy accent, enormous hands, is always jolly and jovial until he reveals himself as a pirate and angrily attacks Jim, Doppler and Amelia with his crew, but then turns back to his kind self after saving Jim out of fatherly love and loves food, in fact he is the ship's cook, and at one point is seen regaling the rest of the crew with stories over tankards of drink, enthusiastically acting out parts of it and using his mechanical arm to provide shadow puppets of the events. He can certainly hold his own in a fight as well, showing a mere fraction of his strength in nearly crushing the spider-alien Scroop's claw when he threatened Jim, and when threatened by a black hole, he is seen with Jim, using his own body to not only anchor Jim to the ship better, but to shield him as well.

  • Every Time I Die's "We'rewolf". Loud, rude, downright crude at times, but fun and surprisingly reflective at others. It helps that the video features the band being victimized by a werewolf and, shortly after, becoming rock 'n' rolling werewolves themselves. And then they crash a party...
  • Shane McGowan of The Pogues used to be one of these, but then his lifestyle caught up with him. Today, he's seen as a walking cautionary tale. Other Celtic Punk bands carrying on in The Pogues' footsteps, however, are all about this trope.
    • The Dreadnoughts' song "Fire Marshall Willy" is all about one of these. Willy is the ultimate party animal.
  • Many of Korpiklaani's songs give this kind of vibe, with their loud, exuberant energy and frequent lyrical focus on alcohol.
  • Gore Shack. With song titles like "The Weredude", "Beercan Burial" , and "Big Tits and Zombie Flicks", They really could never be anything else but this trope personified.

    Myths & Religion 
  • Several thunder gods fall into this trope. Thor, Perun, and Susanoo-no-Mikoto fit the mold very well. Zeus is a Boisterous Bruiser who got married, but never quite settled down—his idea of subtlety is turning his paramour into a conspicuous white heifer. Thunder gods that are also the head of their pantheon tend to have been Boisterous Bruisers before they obtained some kind of (frequently literal) font of wisdom.
  • In Norse Mythology, in addition to Thor, Aegir has a bit of this too. He lives in a giant feast hall at the bottom of the sea and spends all his time entertaining the souls of drowned sailors.
  • Sharik from Russian fairytales. His sister was abducted by a dragon, and her other brothers went to him first, trying to get her back. Said dragon lives in a big house that awes the brothers, serves them "food" of brass and iron which they can't eat naturally and "offers" them to give the sister back if they manage to destroy a huge log without either axe or fire. Which they can't, naturally, so he kills them. Enter Sharik, who mocks the "poor hut" of the dragon, eats all of the "food" and complains he doesn't get more, destroys the log with his little finger and his breath, then kills the dragon and revives the other brothers. Happy Ending.
  • The eponymous heroes of the Caucasian Nart Sagas are energetic warriors famed for their prowess in battle, choosing struggle and glory over comfort and safety.

    Pro Wrestling 
  • WWE's Santino Marella is a comically-inept Boisterous Funny Italian.
  • The "Funkasaurus" Brodus Clay.
  • "Stone Cold" Steve Austin is a more serious example. Loud, willing to fight anyone, and a easily-angered Texan, the fans loved how "the Rattlesnake" seemingly couldn't finish a promo without giving someone a stunner.
  • "Rowdy" Roddy Piper is probably the best example of the Boisterous Bruiser in Professional Wrestling. Damn near every edition of his infamous interview segment "Piper's Pit" ended with him beating down the person he was interviewing, or at least starting a fight with them.
  • Big Show is perhaps the ultimate example in wrestling.



    Web Animation 
  • RWBY
    • Yang Xiao Long, who wields twin shotgun-bracers (allowing her to punch and shoot things simultaneously), has a Super-Strength Semblance and spends her introductory trailer in a one-versus-all brawl in a shady nightclub. Interestingly for this trope, she's also Team RWBY's Team Mom. RWBY Chibi lampshades this with Winter and Zwei's imagining of her:
      Yang: [Winter's imagination] I'm Yang, let's fight!
      Yang: [Zwei's imagination] I'm the Yang, let's fight!
    • Nora Valkyrie from Team JNPR; a Perpetual Smiler Genki Girl, she is always eager to charge into battle and smack opponents around with her giant warhammer/Grenade Launcher. Her suggestion to deal with Jaune's bullying problem is to break the bully's legs, and even her Image Song "Boop" includes lines like "We'll crush our enemies, bring them to their knees".

    Web Original 
  • Mother of Learning includes a female example in Zorian's friend Taiven, a Magic Knight possessed of great confidence and an utter lack of shame when she has something she wants. To give a blatant example:
    Taiven: [barging into the room] Roach! You're just the man I... wait, am I interrupting something?
    Zorian: Yes?
    Taiven: Never mind, it will only take a minute. [shoving a newspaper into his face] Did you see this?
  • Mike from Shadow of the Templar, one of the team's Big Guys (Johnny, the other Big Guy, fills the role of The Quiet One) and designated driver, regularly makes loud greetings and perverted jokes. You can only guess what his driving style is like...

    Web Videos 
  • The Angry Joe Show: The title character is portrayed this way whenever he cameos in a fellow Channel Awesome member's video, as well as in the crossovers like Kickassia and Suburban Knights. ESPECIALLY Kickassia.
  • Grog Strongjaw from Critical Role is practically the poster child for this. A seven foot tall man-child who shifts from comic relief to murderous rage with ease. A single episode might see him carousing through every bar and whorehouse in town, buying a silly hat that he thinks make him look dignified, and then ripping the lower jaw off a foe with his bare hands.
  • In I'm a Marvel... And I'm a DC, the Green Goblin serves as a wacky, but evil Boisterous Bruiser for the villains in Season 1, but becomes a wacky, Chaotic Neutral Boisterous Bruiser for the heroes in Season 2.
  • Golgotha in Noob is a rare female case that fits better here than in The Lad-ette. The main cast Straw Misogynist even went through a period of suspecting her to be a Cross Playing male because he couldn't settle with the idea of a woman acting like her.
  • Von Kaiser, re-imagined as Little Mac's new trainer, in this fanmade trailer for a Punch-Out!!! movie. He's very... infectious.
    Von Kaiser: My name is Von Kaiser — ze German Steel Machine. They call me "Ze Steel Machine" because it is STEEL! Steel in ze heart! Steel in ze arms! STEEL IN ZE HEAD!!

    Von Kaiser: When you step, you bring your feet up! When you punch, you bring your arms up! And you will always keep your heart up!

Alternative Title(s): Fan Works, Animated Films, Music, Mythology And Religion, Professional Wrestling, Theatre, Web Original