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Everybody Was Kung-Fu Fighting

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This is why you should never enter a fight without knowing your enemy, why you should never pick a fight with a building full of kung fu masters, and why you should never make your landlady angry.

"Everybody was kung fu fighting
Those cats were fast as lightning
In fact, it was a little bit frightening
But they fought with expert timing."
Carl Douglas, "Kung Fu Fighting"

Nothing spells World of Badass more than literally everybody else being Badasses who know Martial Arts in one or another form. Because it isn't just grandma who suddenly acquires the ability to be an expert martial artist... it's literally everyone!

Some like to portray a world where violence solves everything. Everyone can and will be a martial arts master. Or expert sharpshooter. Or a beast at good old fashioned fisticuffs. Or a black belt in the Interior-design Curtain-fitting Style.

It doesn't matter whether or not it was hinted that they know how to fight nor does it matter whether or not they even look like they can. They can, do, and will.

In comedy shows, this can be played for laughs, when characters spontaneously break out into epic fights over trivial things like who lost the remote, who should pay for dinner, or who threw a chair. It is not uncommon for the Trope Namer song to begin playing.

Highly common in Wuxia and Martial Arts Movie genres, where it's harder to name a character who doesn't know some martial art.

See also All Asians Know Martial Arts, All Chinese People Know Kung-Fu, Suddenly Always Knew That, I Know Mortal Kombat, and Dragons Up the Yin Yang to set the mood. All Monks Know Kung-Fu seems to be this trope limited to all kinds of monks. Can be a form of Everyone Is a Super, where "Super" is defined as "Martial Artist". Everyone Is Armed occurs when an absurdly chaotic gun fight breaks out.

Contrast Wimp Fight, when it's painfully obvious that the people don't know how to fight, and Fight Scene Failure, which is when the Actors are the ones that don't know how to fight.

Trope title is from the 1970s classic song by Carl Douglas (First four lines shown above) that describes the style of this trope perfectly.


    open/close all folders 

  • Zhang Ziyi once starred in a Visa ad where she is served a soup that is too salty for her, prompting the entire restaurant staff (especially the chef who feels very insulted) to gang up on her, resulting in kung fu mayhem.note 

    Anime & Manga 
  • The Dragon Ball series. Everybody from the little old man to the evil bubble gum alien seems to know Kung Fu.
    • The now-defunct MMORPG Dragon Ball Online, set over two centuries after the end of DBZ, justified this: two decades after the end of the series, Gohan published a book which taught the general populace about Ki Manipulation. This lead to Goten and Trunks founding a school centered around ki-control swordfighting; 15 years later, students of this school were instrumental in driving off an invasion attempt by the remnants of Frieza's forces, which lead to a wide-spread interest in Supernatural Martial Arts, which lead to Krillin and Tien Shinhan founding new schools of Turtle- and Crane-style martial arts. Add in wide-spread Saiyan genes, and you have a species that literally has fighting in its blood.
  • Ikki Tousen, good God. Pretty much every person that gets any amount of time can be seen fighting at some point or another (and that's counting the minor ones).
  • Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple. Subverted in some characters, like Niijima or the girl who has a crush on Kenichi, but pretty much the whole cast has knowledge of martial arts, even Shigure's mouse.
  • Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha ViVid gives us a glimpse of what non-military life in Mid-Childa is like through the eyes of Nanoha's daughter. After a few chapters, it becomes this. That duo of girls? Heir to the Dojo of an ancient martial art and a Golem manipulator who could also fight as a Ditto Fighter in close combat The Blithe Spirit nun-in-training? Tonfa-based Warrior Monk Trickster speedster. The Ojou? Literal Magic Knight fighting style passed down from Ancient Belka. The only named new character who hasn't been revealed to have a fighting style of some sort so far is The Ojou's butler, who is a very minor person.
  • The Mons genre in general. Every opponent the main character meet will inevitably have a theme to their item or pet, which they will invariably ALSO be a martial arts master in this style as well. As they scream out the names of the attacks their item or pet does, they will also (pointlessly) perform shadow fighting techniques to point out how kick-ass they are. Perhaps to convince us (and themselves) that they're not just, you know, fighting with cards and plastic toys.
    • Although in the case of Yu-Gi-Oh!, many characters actually are good fighters, which was particularly relevant in the first few volumes of the manga and the Toei anime. Jounouchi is a skilled street fighter who knocks out a trained assassin and keeps up against a Leather Face expy, Honda isn't exactly a wuss either, Kaiba kicks the crap out of a couple of people, Anzu throws some mean punches, Yami Yugi is hinted at being quite capable (particularly in the Toei anime, where he has no troubles slamming his puzzle into the wall or kicking the daylights out of two of Kaiba's mooks who were twice his size (off-screen, sadly) and Yami Bakura wasn't exactly weak either; let's not even start bringing up their past selves, who were all without a doubt trained in combat.
  • Naruto is a justified example, considering that most of the events takes place in hidden villages completely organized around training Highly-Visible Ninja.
  • Ranma ½. Everyone knows some martial art variation, from Anything Goes Tea Ceremony to Martial Arts Figure Skating. You name it, it's a martial art. Even calligraphy.
  • YuYu Hakusho: The Demon World to the extent that all out war is averted by a tournament that is nearly as violent because no one knows how else to go about things. Even in the Living World, Yusuke and Kuwabara solve their problems by fighting.

    Comic Books 

    Film — Animated 

    Film — Live-Action 
  • In Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, every anchorman apparently keeps weapons on their person, at all times.
  • Happens quite frequently in the Burton/Schumacher Batman films. While roughly half the arch-villains (Joker, Penguin and Riddler especially) are very unathletic and/or physically weak, their Mooks are often improbably masters of kung fu, karate, and various other styles, some of them even wielding katanas. For Batman Returns, Burton even had to hire ten (mostly) nameless guys from a Hollywood dojo specifically for a fight scene. Gets really ridiculous in Batman Forever, where an entire street gang who spend most of their time threatening and mugging teenage girls are all skilled at kendo and various forms of hand-to-hand combat. A more realistic approach was taken in Nolan's Batman films, where the Mooks for the most part don't know how to fight and just rely on guns.
  • Blade has Blade repeatedly fighting scores of mooks with martial arts. Vampires don't seem to hand out many guns to their minions.
  • The climax of Blazing Saddles. After the "fake Rock Ridge" is blown up by the Waco Kid, Sheriff Bart leads every single one of the townspeople in a wild and confused attack on Hedley Lamarr's gang. Even the women throw punches, the preacher knees some guy in the groin (immediately asking God to forgive him for that), and the town drunk knocks a thug simply by breathing on him. The free-for-all eventually literally Breaks The Fourth Wallnot that there was much of one, to begin with — onto the Warner Brothers studio lot where Blazing Saddles is being filmed, with other productions being swept up in the turmoil and everyone eventually fighting their way into the studio cafeteria, where one of the cooks just happens to have a huge tray of custard pies handy so the entire cast can throw pies at each other.
  • Lampshaded at the end of Bowfinger. They're making a film in Taiwan, where all the locals know kung-fu. The Westerners are shown as painfully bad at it, but still mowing through mobs of extras.
  • Chocolate, another Thai martial-arts film from the director of Ong-Bak. Everyone on the streets of Bangkok, from warehouse laborers to butchers to gangsters, is a martial artist of some kind (except for the transvestite gangbangers, who use guns). Almost all of them have their ass handed to them by an autistic teenaged girl.
  • Enter the Dragon ends with a massive kung fu battle. On one side you have Han's army of martial arts students, trained to kill mercilessly with their bare hands. On the other side you have... a bunch of vagrants and runaways, kidnapped from the streets of Hong Kong and freshly released from Han's dungeons. And Bruce Lee. The two sides appear to be about evenly matched.
  • One of the staples of Jackie Chan's films is him playing a kung fu fighting cop. Jackie Chan's opponents tend to come from all walks of life, including accountants.
  • It's never really explained why there just happens to be a Kung Fu school in the middle of a 6th-century English town, in King Arthur: Legend of the Sword but it is very convenient when Arthur is being chased by the Evil King's men, is on the verge of being overrun and needs refuge and back up in order to escape.
  • Played to hilarious, awesome excess in Kung Fu Hustle. The local mobsters make the mistake of trying to extort money from an apartment building where no less than six people are kung fu masters.
  • Kung Fu Hip Hop features kung fu fighting hip hop dancers.
  • Miami Connection is the simple timeless story of a taekwondo rock band having to fight against street thugs and drug-dealing biker ninjas. Nearly everyone in it knows martial arts, even a nightclub owner and assorted extras. You can easily tell that most of the characters are played by martial artists, not actors.
  • Justified in The Matrix due to the training programs, where people can simply download the necessary skills.
  • The Raid: It seems that every single petty criminal inside the slummy apartment run by a drug lord that the movie takes place in is well versed in martial arts. It just so happens that the protagonist is better at them.
  • Rising Sun: Since Japan Takes Over the World, everyone is apparently learning karate as well. The Japanophile Connor is an expert, and the ordinary cop Web is also inexplicably an expert. The pair bypass a bouncer who brags about his black belt via some Combat Pragmatism. The film also adds a gratuitous scene where Connor and Web fistfight some mooks sent by the Japanese.
  • Happens a little more than two-thirds of the way through Disney's The Rocketeer when some gangsters try to shake down a diner. A fistfight breaks out, and everyone in the diner joins the action, including the kitchen staff who come out swinging their frying pans.
  • Rush Hour 3: Carter clearly knows how to fight by now against other fighting experts. He even breaks into song afterward.
  • A plot point in the movie Shaolin Soccer: the hero wants to spread Shaolin Kung Fu and points out to a soccer coach how it could be used to improve peoples' lives (like avoiding Banana Peels and parallel parking). After they win a soccer tournament with an entire team of Shaolin monks, the hero gets his wish, and we get a Montage of people using kung fu in their everyday lives. In the English dub, the song that plays in the background is a cover of "Kung Fu Fighting" by Carl Douglas. The film also features a woman who uses tai chi to cook and play goalie.
  • Basically every Shaw Brothers martial arts films with the word "Shaolin" in it's title, ever since the success of The Shaolin Temple (1976) and The 36th Chamber of Shaolin. Everyone is a fighter, may they be waiters, labourers, cooks...
  • Played with in the 2008 Speed Racer film, as everyone in the Racer family is able to prodigiously defend themselves against enemy racers, ninjas, etc. Most of them somehow know Kung Fu, although Pops uses his wrestling pedigree to kick ass with Good Old Fisticuffs. The exception is the Racers' mechanic Sparky, who is totally useless in a fight and repeatedly has to be bailed out by his infinitely more skilled companions.
  • Sockbaby. In Sockb4by, even Ronnie's next-door neighbor is one of the mook squad that attacks him.
  • Played for laughs in They Call Me Bruce? where everyone from street thugs to FBI agents knows martial arts, but the protagonist doesn't despite people assuming from his name and because he's Asian that he's like Bruce Lee.
  • Triple Threat (2019) Almost every named character is proficient in martial arts to some degree, resulting in a large number of close quarters combat sequences.
  • Undefeatable plays this to the bone. Random women in red dresses that resemble the antagonist's wife strike stances and try to fight, among other characters that have no business knowing martial arts. To be fair, all but the four main characters are terrible at it.
  • As VJ Emmie happily puts it, everybody in Uganda knows kung fu in Who Killed Captain Alex?, from the terrorists to the military soldiers. Interestingly enough, all the actors in the movie have some knowledge of mixed martial arts, either self-taught or learned from others, and there is a Shaolin Kung Fu school in Uganda.

  • Robert Muchamore's CHERUB Series has every member of the titular organization be trained in martial arts, justified in that it's a spy school and the pupils are required to know this for missions.
  • Smartly inverted in The Gallagher Girls series: the characters (teenagers who also attend spy school) are completely used to everyone knowing kung fu, and so they don't realize until after beating off a kidnap attempt that ordinary kidnappers shouldn't have been expecting a senator's daughter and her best friend to know this much about martial arts.
  • Pretty much the case in Greek Ninja.
  • Star Trek:
    • In the novel "Vulcan's Glory" a series of murders takes place onboard the USS Enterprise where the victims all had their necks broken. The newly arrived Lieutenant Spock quickly ascertains that a single handed Vulcan technique called Lan-Dova was used to break the necks, and that the murderer was a Vulcan or was raised by Vulcans as the Lan-Dova technique was taught to nearly all Vulcan school children as part of their self defense training.
  • Justified in the Whateley Universe stories; in this Cape Punk world, just having powers of some sort marks one as a target of both Fantastic Racism and Superhuman Trafficking, so the Whateley Academy school administration is determined to give every one of their students at least some sort of fighting chance. Students have to take either introductory martial arts ("introductory" in the superpowered sense of the word) or Survival (which is more about evasion techniques than wilderness survival), and those who don't take it in their first semester usually regret it when they discover the Combat Finals at the end of the term. As a result, huge numbers of mutants at the school can pull off some aikido or Shaolin kung fu or whatnot, and a fair number are quite proficient; there are even two rival 'schools', the Dragons and the Tigers, within the school walls. There are over half a dozen teachers whose job is teaching martial arts, in a school of under 600 mutants. At least three students (Fey, Bladedancer, and Pejuta) have personal martial arts trainers, though these specialists also help with some other students sometimes.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Becoming a vampire on Buffy the Vampire Slayer (and Angel, by proxy) didn't just mean gaining immortality or super strength... it also meant automatic Kung Fu prowess. Why is being a vampire bad again? Oh yeah, that sun thing. And that soulless monster thing.
    • Lampshaded in "Lessons":
      Dawn: But he's new! He doesn't know his strength, he might not know all those fancy martial arts skills they inevitably seem to pick up.
    • Except in Vampire Harmony's early appearances, particularly the scene where she and Xander get into a hilarious slap-fight, complete with epic music and slow-motion.
    • Lampshaded in one episode where Dawn complains that it takes her forever to learn any martial arts whereas all newborn vampires "seem to spend a couple of months at the same tae kwon do school".
    • Lampshaded in "Anne" when the Scooby Gang are hunting vampires while Buffy's out of town and encounter a newborn vampire who hands them their asses in this fashion. When Xander, pissed-off, demands to know how the hell he learned that stuff, Oz recognizes him as a former classmate who used to be captain of the gymnastics team.
  • Any Power Rangers hero or side character intended to become one later will have mad fight skills even if there's no indication that they've ever taken a single karate lesson. If they don't have any the very first time the Mooks show up, they will by their second appearance.
    • Also of note is that a ridiculous number of people in the original seasons were nuts about martial arts, long before Rita attacked. Once the franchise finally moved out of Angel Grove in season 7, this was realistically dropped. However, a couple of later seasons had the heroes get caught up in the fight and become Rangers specifically because they had been already been training in Supernatural Martial Arts.
    • Averted with the original Blue Ranger. Billy didn't have any martial arts skills in his human form at the beginning of the series and even seemed to have trouble with Rita's Putties. Following an episode that had him actually taking lessons from one of the other Ranger's relatives, he started to get better over time.
    • Hilariously subverted with Green Ranger Ziggy of Power Rangers RPM. Even all the way to the season finale, he's always struggled in a fight (in comparison to his fellow Rangers).
  • Lovejoy, a British TV series (very!) loosely based on some novels about a conman-cum-antiques-dealer, subverted this one in a scene where Lovejoy's ally of the week, a Japanese man, frightens off a gang of thugs by pretending to know kung fu. After they're gone he explains that everyone just assumes he can kick their butts because he's Asian.
  • Xena: Warrior Princess. Not only does everyone (outside of the mooks) know Kung-Fu, they know different styles: Karate, Capoeira, Judo, pressure point manipulation — if it's vaguely martial art-like, a Xena character has used it. Yes; in Ancient Greece.
    • Fully justified. Ancient Greece was, by modern standards, a violent place where swords, spears, and unarmed fighting were commonplace, accepted elements of everyday life- yes, even in "gentle", civilized Athens. (Socrates was an ex-soldier). Pankration was a clearly defined martial art complete with strikes, throws, and submission holds and remains a viable art even in the modern age of Ultimate fighting.
      • Even more justified as some scholars suggest that kung fu was invented by people who had learned Pankration from Alexander's soldiers during his eastern campaign.
    • In fact, in ancient Greece, every male had to join the military, so it's entirely expected that they should know how to handle themselves in a fight. They should not, however, know Kung Fu.
      • Justified in Hercules: The Maze and the Minotaur, where Hercules and Iolaus do mention that they've been to "the East."
    • Pankration was more like wrestling than a martial art relying on strikes, although it had those too. It was invented by hoplites in case a soldier fell down. In this case, trying to get up would most likely result in getting stabbed, so the alternative was to drag the opponent down on the ground with you and choke him to death. The original Olympics had Pankration as the main event with the top contenders fighting naked. The only moves disallowed are eye-gouging, biting, and killing your opponent. The champions were treated as royalty.
  • In one of JD's daydream sequences in Scrubs, Turk and The Todd had to kung fu fight every other surgeon in the hospital for a briefcase. To the song "Everybody Was Kung Fu Fighting". See it here.
    • "Betrayal five!"
  • One episode of Charmed had no supernatural enemies whatsoever. Instead, the episode's villain was a corrupt District Attorney who was trying to frame his mistress for murder. Towards the end of the episode, the mistress confronts the District Attorney and the two of them suddenly engage in a brief kung fu fight completely out of left field.
  • On Lost, everyone except Hurley is an expert marksman and close-combat fighter. Hurley makes up for this lack by running people over with a bus.]
  • In Community episode Comparative Religion, every last member of the study group is shown to be capable of brawling.
  • Top Gear (UK) created a Title Sequence for The Intercepters, a non-existent Seventies action show, which featured members of Top Gear in Porn Stache taking out various villains with a well-placed karate chop. Eventually, even hapless hotel butlers and dancing females are on the receiving end.
  • Batman (1966). Two heroes vs. the episode's main villain and their henchmen? Seems like fair odds.
  • CSI: NY: "Corporate Warriors" involved a firm whose executives were all highly skilled martial arts experts. One was killed by a second who was subsequently killed by a third. One of the clues Danny & Stella found was a footprint on the ceiling of a completely trashed pool bar.
  • Warrior (2019) has just about every major Asian character know martial arts. The non-Asian characters tend to be adept fighters in their own right.
  • In Wu Assassins, almost every single named character displays martial arts skills in combat, to varying degrees of proficiency. And since most of them are Asian-American, this doubles as All Asians Know Martial Arts.


    Stand Up Comedy 
  • George Carlin took note of this trope and roundly mocked it in his book Napalm & Silly Putty:
    George: Why is it when the two main characters in an action movie have their big climactic fight it always turns out that both of them are really good fighters? Just once, wouldn't you like to see a fight between two leading male characters where one of them gets the shit completely beat out of him in about eight seconds? Especially the hero.

    Tabletop Games 
  • In the roleplaying game Feng Shui, one of the cardinal rules of combat is that everyone — EVERYONE — knows at least some kung fu. They might not have enough skill for it to register in their stats, but if a character is capable of more motion than your average baby, then they know kung fu.
    • Except for those who have just the Guns skill combat-wise, like the Killer or the Techie. Those guys just dive around, take cover, and use the Guns and Gunplay Tropes to full effect (and they probably know Gun Fu). Or the Sorcerer, who uses the Sorcery skill to rain all over his enemies' parade. Sometimes literally.
  • Hong Kong Action Theatre may be a better example of this trope in tabletop games than Feng Shui. In this game, every character, whether they specialize in melee, gunplay, sorcery, or just kicking ass Martial Arts Movie style, knows Kung Fu. You even get to select your character's specific style of Kung Fu upon creation!
  • The same applies for any Tabletop Game based on Fighting Games, such as the Street Fighter RPG, Thrash, and Final Stand.
  • The RPG Weapons Of The Gods, and (one assumes) the Taiwanese comic book on which it's based.
  • One officially listed campaign suggestion for Dungeons & Dragons is to have everyone be a gestalt monk (basically, add in the abilities of the monk class on top of whatever actual class any character has), specifically to evoke this kind of feeling in a campaign.
  • It's even easier in Legend System with the tracks. Everyone just takes one of the Monk class' "Discipline of the Serpent/Dragon/Crane" tracks, and you can have a barbarian that knows kung-fu, a Jedi that knows kung-fu, a thief who knows kung-fu, and a Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot that knows kung-fu.
  • Exalted loves its Supernatural Martial Arts and as such:
    • The companion book "Scroll of the Monk" suggests using this trope liberally and with gusto should one of the PCs be looking for a hidden martial arts master.
    • Burn Legend, in Shards of the Exalted Dream. The character sheet doesn't even have social or mental stats, and the general assumption is that any NPC of significance is going to be a black belt.
    • Sidereals (also known as fate ninjas) are all over them. They all, mandatorily start with at least two points in martial arts (Endings Caste start with three and specializes in them). They also have their own whole tier of martial arts, which generally involves beating up concepts of reality and stands above everything else. They also have a unique Background related to having a martial arts teacher.
  • ''Shinobigami: All player characters, and likely a high percentage of NPCs, are Ninja.

    Video Games 
  • From Assassin's Creed II onwards, if you pickpocket anyone and they catch sight of Ezio, the victim will attempt to punch him out. Keyword being attempt: It doesn't take many punches from Ezio to put them in their place.
  • Fugitive Hunter War On Terror is all about tracking down terrorists around the globe, taking them on in fistfights, and capturing them. Terrorists who, inexplicably, have the same martial arts skills as you do? including Osama bin Laden.
  • In Jade Empire, almost every character or enemy seems to have some sort of training in a martial art. Even the lingering spirits of random dead people seem to be capable of martial arts skills as advanced as yours. Makes the sole cause of a Damsel in Distress (Fuyao, the girl who you rescue from slavers in Gao the Greater's pirate base) stand out.
  • Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. Everybody seems to have a hardon for Big Boss's CQC system.
  • The two-person non-lethal takedowns in Deus Ex: Human Revolution often begin with the targets attempting to expertly melee Jensen followed by an equally expert counter and finishing move. The takedowns can be done not just on enemies but also regular NPCs. This means that you can witness elaborate martial battles not just between Jensen and soldiers, but between Jensen and ordinary civilians or even between Jensen and street prostitutes.
  • Sleeping Dogs (2012): Most people, including all mooks and many male civilians, know kung fu in Hong Kong. If you hijack a car or start punching people in the street, you may be surprised by the number of people who will at least try to hit back.
  • Street Fighter 6's World Tour mode is all about this trope. Everyone in Metro City knows how to fight and is willing to throw down at a moment's notice.
  • Turns out to be true for Thief 1, and to some extent 2. As the secret "outtakes" level proved, the same sword fighting system which allowed guards, humanoid monsters, and undead alike to go weapon-to-sword with Garret also works with all those harmless human servants, ballerinas, and passersby - if they weren't flagged to act as scared noncombatants they could kick your ass unarmed with the same moves, probably while whimpering in fear. The developer notes lampshade it kind of looks like kung fu.
  • Zeno Clash: Everyone you fight is a strangely adept combatant; this is particularly strange, as you are the only one who seems to have gotten any training at all.
  • Zeno Clash 2: Unlike the first game, a Justification is offered as to why everyone is so great at fighting. The world of Zenozoik is a primitive place, and the people there have neither a concept of law nor justice. The standard dispute resolution method is fighting—much to Golem's exasperation.


    Web Original 
  • It seems that almost every character in Darwin's Soldiers is fairly skilled with firearms. Justified in that firearms training and basic marksmanship are mentioned as being mandatory or that the employee in question enjoys recreational shooting.
  • There was an unusual prevalence of combat skilled characters in Survival of the Fittest V3 and its Pregame, especially since the characters are all, at best, high schoolers. Averted in V2 and V1, mostly, since few characters got opportunities to engage in hand to hand fighting.
  • The TGWTG Year One Brawl, where every single one of the site's contributors proved to be semi-competent, marginally deadly martial artists. Except for Ma-Ti, who has Heart as his power.

    Western Animation 
  • In Avatar: The Last Airbender, almost every main-character, both good and evil, knows a version of kung-fu. Most of them know superpowered kung-fu based on one of the four elements. Exceptions are Sokka, who functions as the team's Badass Normal (eventually), and a few minor characters, like Yue, Yugoda and the Cabbage Merchant.
  • One of the initial criticisms of The Batman was that seemingly every villain was an expert hand-to-hand combatant, including traditionally poor fighters like Joker and Penguin. This was toned down as the show went on (for better or for worse), although it always existed to some extent.
  • The Boondocks specifically states that anytime someone throws a chair, everyone will engage in a mass fight. Huey and Uncle Ruckus are apparently gifted martial artists that are great with melee weaponry; in Ruckus' case, this is extremely bizarre (given his terrible health and physical ability, blatantly referred to in previous episodes). Colonel Stinkmeaner started out as a subversion (Huey assumed his blindness made him Daredevil, but it turns out he's just a blind elderly man who got a lucky shot in), but (unusually) returned from Hell a martial arts master, the event implying that he was trained by Satan himself. This was before his Hateocracy showed up, where they went up against hired bodyguard Bushido Brown.
    • Not to mention that Granddad is a master of Belt-Fu...
    • In the second season episode "Attack of the Killer Kung-Fu Wolf Bitch", Granddad's internet blind date, Luna, is revealed to know "White Lotus Kung-Fu" and to have won the Kumite (every time the tournament's name is mentioned, there's a little martial arts "hi-yah" noise). Needless to say, eventually Huey tests her skills and is beaten to the floor for his troubles.
    • For half the fights that break out in Boondocks, participants are shown with inexplicable physical prowess and at least some karate kicks in there.
  • One episode of Family Guy had the entire family break out into an epic brawl after criticizing each other's faults. Ironically (or maybe not), this brought the family closer together. Not to mention the multiple chicken fights.
  • Jackie Chan Adventures is the living embodiment of this trope, and it is awesome. Notably, in a Time Travel Episode set during the character Jackie's childhood during The '70s, a fight breaks out between present-Jackie, past-Uncle, present-Jade, and the Dark Hand, prompting one of the kids watching to say "Everybody is Kung-Fu Fighting!".
  • ¡Mucha Lucha! does it with Mexican Professional Wrestling. The main setting is a school for luchadores, and true to form, pretty much 90% of the entire cast (and that's counting one-shot characters) dabbles in wrestling.
  • In The Penguins of Madagascar the penguins use violence to solve everything from runaways to making popcorn pop. Skipper, the leader, even says in one episode, "I find reason tedious and boring. We use force."
  • On The Simpsons this happens a lot. Four of the five members of the Simpson family can handle themselves pretty well in a fight (Maggie the baby at least knows how to fire a gun), and countless other Springfieldians are more than likely to start an Escalating Brawl over just about anything, including someone saying something mildly disagreeable.

    Real Life 
  • This is part of the conscription training for citizens of both Koreas, with taekwondo instead of kung fu as the martial art. In fact, in the case of South Korea, it is more or less an unwritten rule that all children should learn taekwondo (and only before middle school, apparently), although it's changing now.
  • Most Israeli citizens serve in the military and are consequently trained in Krav Maga. Due to the state of constant hostility with its neighbors, Israelis are more likely to need to fight than most other nations with a compulsory draft.
  • In pre-World War II Japan, karate and kendo were compulsory school subjects for boys, and naginata-do for girls.
  • Outdoor aerobics-style tai chi classes are extremely common in China, predominately for health benefits. Since tai chi is a martial art, in theory, the people in these classes can defend themselves if they just perform the movements faster. Thus, a reasonable amount of people might be kung fu fighting if they really needed to.
  • The Irish are responsible for giving us the concept of the donnybrook: a large group of friendly people brawling with each other purely for entertainment.
  • Ancient Greece was a place where everyone knew how to fight. It usually was wrestling or Pankration, but there were also pugilists and the like. All those myths in which random people killed each other for little reason? Truth in Television, for them.
  • Paris during the Belle Epoque. After France' defeat in the Franco-Prussian War, the suppression of the Paris Commune, and a failed attempt to restore the monarchy the population was left with little trust in the government and filled with young poor people who resorted to crime and violence to make money (eventually resulting in the Les Apaches subculture (allegedly so named after a robbery victim compared his robber's ferocity to the Apache and he not only liked it but spread the idea), and when the badly outnumbered police failed to maintain order the Parisians took upon themselves to fight back, importing Savate from the south and refining it in countless fights between Les Apaches and the common people. This went horribly for the Germans during both World Wars: during the first droves of Parisians from both sides of the law to the German advance on the capital by going to the frontline and helping the army win the Battle of the Marne, and in 1944 the German garrison was suddenly assaulted by the Parisians, many of which had lived during the Belle Epoque, ran out of town and chased until they surrendered to the Free French troops that were supposed to liberate the capital.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Kung Fu Fighting


Ugandan Kung Fu

VJ Emmie narrates a fight between the Ugandan Special Forces and the Tiger Mafia, and as he states "Everybody in Uganda knows kung-fu!"

How well does it match the trope?

5 (19 votes)

Example of:

Main / EverybodyWasKungFuFighting

Media sources: