Follow TV Tropes

Following

Coin Walk Flexing

Go To

[Turk sees Dr. Casey practicing a coin roll]
Turk: Cool trick.
Dr. Casey: You should try it. It's great for dexterity, concentration, and convincing single women you're a power dork.
Scrubs, "My Catalyst"

The coin walk, also known as the coin roll, knuckle roll, or steeplechase flourish, is a dexterity trick where a character rolls a small object across their fingers, usually over the first joints. This can be done in either direction, and the thumb and pinky finger are used to "catch" the object and shift it back to the index finger to start the roll over again. It's usually done with something round and flat like a coin or poker chip, although other objects can be used.

Advertisement:

This trick requires a good bit of flexibility and skill to do smoothly, and sometimes a character will be seen practicing it or demonstrating it to another character. Others may do it just because it conveys an immediate air of coolness or badassery. It may also demonstrate or imply being in a profession where such nimbleness is helpful, or can simply be a Character Tic.


Examples

    open/close all folders 

    Film — Animation 
  • The Bad Guys: Mr. Wolf does this with Governor Diane Foxington's diamond ring after stealing it during the Golden Dolphin ceremony. When Diane steals it back later, she does the same thing, showing Mr. Wolf that she's not as different from him as he thinks.

    Film — Live-Action 
  • Constantine (2005): The demon Balthazar is introduced rolling a coin across his knuckles. Later, when Angela unlocks her psychic powers and uses them to uncover the truth behind Beeman's murder, she begins rolling a coin across her knuckles, revealing to Constantine that Balthazar was the killer.
  • Looper: A sci-fi variant. People with the TK mutation (a weak form of telekinesis) are often shown floating coins with their hands and it comes off looking similar to a knuckle roll. Sara shows greater control by levitating Joe's lighter effortlessly and admitting she used to hold other telekinetics' coins down to mess with them.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl: After it's been revealed that Jack Sparrow has become a cursed undead willingly, he takes the Aztec gold medallion that he used to curse himself, and rolls it across his knuckles to mock Barbossa.
  • The Prestige: While kissing his mistress Olivia, Borden is shown rolling his wedding band across his fingertips. This shows both his dexterity as a magician and that he doesn't take his marriage seriously unlike his true other half.
  • Real Genius: In one scene, Mitch walks into class to talk to Chris, but Chris blows him off and leaves. During this scene, Chris is knuckle rolling a coin with each hand and keeps it up as he gets up from his desk and walks away.
  • Road to Perdition: Harlan Maguire has a habit of doing a coin walk when he's bored or frustrated.
  • Sleeper: Miles uses a coin walk as a seduction technique on Luna.
  • The Strange Love of Martha Ivers: When Martha and Sam meet up again as adults, Sam does a coin roll as they sit and talk. While gambling isn't actually shown in the film, Word Of God is that this was done as a visual cue that Sam had become a Professional Gambler during the time before he reappeared in Martha's life.
  • Tombstone: Doc Holliday's introductory scene has him playing poker, nonchalantly doing a coin roll as he looks at his hand and then calls a $500 bet. This leads to a confrontation with the guy he just fleeced that turns into a fight which ends with said guy stabbed by Doc.
  • X-Men: First Class: In one of his first scenes as an adult, Magneto is idly using his power to float a coin around his spread fingers in a way that resembles a coin walk, showing his acquired mastery over his talents.
Advertisement:

    Literature 
  • The Dark Tower: Roland can do a knuckle roll with a cartridge with such speed and fluidity that it actually has a hypnotic effect. He does this in The Gunslinger to hypnotize Jake to get information from him.
  • Liaden Universe: In the prequel stories featuring the stage magician (and wizard) Lute, one of Lute's signature moves is walking a round gaming counter across his knuckles. In the main series, after Shan learns that he's a reincarnation of Lute, he acquires an ability to make a gaming counter appear, walk across his knuckles, and disappear; to his annoyance, it's not entirely within his conscious control and sometimes happens by itself when he's worried or distracted.
  • The Pearl: The first pearl trader is described as fiddling with a coin between his fingers and knuckles with just one hand, while waiting for Kino to enter. The moment Kino comes in, the trader then puts his hand behind his back and continues fiddling the coin, and when Kino takes out the giant Pearl of the World, the aghast trader immediately drops his coin and rolls his (out of sight) hand into a clenched fist.
  • Early in White Cat, Cassel absently snatches up a nickel from a counter and rolls it across his knuckles, an indication that he's learned other tricks to compensate for his lack of magic.

    Live-Action TV 
  • American Gods: While he was in prison, Shadow learned how to manipulate coins, partly as a hobby and partly to take his mind off his circumstances. In the novel, he does coin palming and various other sleight-of-hand tricks, while the TV adaptation simpliies this to having him do knuckle rolls, something he does easily despite his large hands.
  • Fringe: In one episode, Peter does a knuckle roll with a coin and then makes it disappear while talking to Walter, with Walter being impressed with Peter's skill.
  • Merlin (1998): Merlin impresses Nimue by appearing to pluck the moon from the night sky and roll it across his knuckles like a coin, although he quickly dismisses the act as "just a trick."
  • Scrubs: In "My Catalyst", Turk sees visiting surgeon Kevin Casey doing a coin walk in the lounge. Casey remarks on it being a good way to practice dexterity and notes that it can draw in the ladies, then tosses the coin to Turk. Near the end of the episode, Turk is practicing a coin roll when his girlfriend asks him to come to bed.

    Video Games 
  • The Great Ace Attorney: Gina Lestrade used to be a pickpocket, and shows off her dexterity by doing a coin roll in some of her animations, usually when she's deep in thought over something.
  • Detroit: Become Human: Connor does coin tricks as one of his Character Tics, including an exaggerated coin roll where he rolls the coin across his fingers on its edge rather than flat. Hank, at one point, takes the coin from him after getting irritated with him playing with it, but then tries to do one of those tricks as Connor watches.
  • Injustice 2: Deadshot's fight intros have him walk into view knuckle rolling a cartridge before tossing it into the air and catching it after his opponent speaks.
  • Overwatch:
    • Ashe's Bullet Walk Highlight Intro demonstrates her dexterity by showing her knuckle rolling a rifle cartridge.
    • In the opening cutscene of Storm Rising, Maximilien is introduced rolling a casino chip over his fingers as he rides in his car, reflecting his stylishness.
  • Valorant: On the character select screen, all the Agents do some kind of cool-looking pose. In Cypher's case, he does a coin roll with one of the trigger discs for his Trapwire ability. During gameplay, when the Trapwire ability is selected, he walks a trigger disc across his fingers before taking hold of it.

    Western Animation 
  • Gravity Falls: While playing Dungeons, Dungeons & More Dungeons with Dipper, Grunkle Ford performs a knuckle roll with a die before he casts it, bringing attention to the fact that his hand has six fingers.
  • Regular Show: In the episode "No Train No Gain", Pops does this as a part of his training. As the training montage goes haywire, he starts telekinetically floating the coin between his fingers instead, before becoming powerful enough to liquify the coin to have it pass through all finger gaps at once.
  • X-Men: Evolution: In the Cold Open of "Strategy X", Scott is practicing doing a coin walk while watching a football game, but he drops the coin. When he goes under the bleachers to retrieve it, he finds Jerk Jock Duncan bullying Toad, who has been pickpocketing people watching the game.


Top

Doc Holliday coin walk

Doc Holliday does a coin walk in his first scene.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (2 votes)

Example of:

Main / CoinWalkFlexing

Media sources:

Report