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Dynamic Akimbo

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"I'm Barack Obama, and I approve this pose."

Keanrick: Why, your very posture tells me, "Here is a man of true greatness."
Blackadder: Either that or "Here are my genitals, please kick them."

This one is Older Than Feudalism.

The Dynamic Akimbo Pose is used so often in media that it's considered something of an Undead Horse Trope. It's something so Campy, so over-the-top ridiculous, that it's typically only used as satire or for characters saved by the Grandfather Clause.

The pose itself is used to draw attention to the upper body, to indicate how large, imposing, or confident the subject is. Once upon a time, this trope was Always Male, but female characters later began using it as well. In either case, the trope usually invokes an impressive, or large, chest along with powerful shoulders, biceps and abs. Sometimes, the trope may be done from the back to demonstrate that the character is so awesome or mysterious that their focus is on something or someone other than you. Women typically get a gender-specific variation of that which may be combined with Boobs-and-Butt Pose, where she does this pose, but at an angle where you can see her sexy parts.


Expect to see lots of this for any Superman Substitute. It should be noted, however, that villains often like to pull off this pose, too, when they're confident or intimidating enough to do so.

See also V-Formation Team Shot, where this is often used. Compare Badass Armfold, which has a similar, though not identical, effect.

Not to be confused with Guns Akimbo, which is about Dual Wielding guns.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Dragon Ball, the pose is both played straight and satirized.
    • Powerful characters, such as the Z-Fighters, often pull off the pose in true dramatic fashion.
    • Comedic characters such as Mr. Satan/Hercule, Captain Ginyu, and the Great Saiyaman all do this in a satirical, over-the-top manner as well.

    Comic Books 

    Fan Works 

    Film — Live-Action 

    Live Action TV 


    Visual Novels 

    Western Animation 
  • Freakazoid! villain Arms Akimbo has arms that are permanently in this position due to his work as a model. One might well wonder how he manages to dress himself.
  • In the title sequence of T.U.F.F. Puppy, Kitty Katswell is seen doing this pose.

    Real Life 
  • The Renaissance era copied the muscular style of Ancient Grome and cemented this visual.
  • Circus strongmen were often posed like this on posters in the 19th and early 20th Centuries.
  • Apparently, Truth in Television. Doing this pose often enough will boost your testosterone.
  • This is a stock bodybuilding pose to show off one's lats and pectoral muscles.
  • Il Duce himself, Benito Mussolini, adopted this pose at least once during the March on Rome. Given that Italian Fascism was built around male machismo, this isn't surprising.
  • Bethany Joy Lenz of Guiding Light and One Tree Hill has her hands on her hips all the time. Seriously. When standing, walking, sitting, even running her hands her glued to her hips. This trait has been passed down to her characters as well. The normally agreeable Joie Lenz (as she's known to fans) once refused to wear a costume that would prevent her from posing this way during a taping of One Tree Hill. Her character, Haley, was given a different costume to wear that allowed her hands to rest on her hips.
    • One time during an interview before an awards ceremony, some of her hair blew in her face and she kept tossing her head and blowing her hair, trying (and failing) to get it out of her face, never once taking her hands off her hips to do so. You could tell the interviewer was clearly getting increasingly annoyed with her and cut the interview short.
    • Another time when asked by David Letterman if she ever took her hands off her hip, she said "no" and laughed, eliciting awkward laughter from Dave.


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