Follow TV Tropes


Handy Man

Go To

"Patch the drywall, clean your gutters and mow the lawn
Make that phone call, I'll install anything you want
Yeah, check my big staple gun, my socket wrenches are second to none
I won't quit 'til I'm done, don't even care if I hammer my thumb
[whacks thumb with hammer] OW!"''

Usually a large amiable sort of man, good-natured, affable, physically strong and sometimes (though not always) good looking and in good physical shape, this is the guy who knows how to fix things, make things, and repair a host of problems around the home and garden. Probably a builder by trade, his idea of heaven is a toolbox, a great stack of wood, and a plan to work to.

Men admire him and want to be his friend; women love him and indulge him, especially if he has put right a D.I.Y. Disaster perpetrated by the Henpecked Husband or else is effortlessly getting right what the hapless male has just got utterly and spectacularly wrong.

He is related to the Grease Monkey and Mr Fix It and exudes similar justified confidence in his work. (Another aspect of his character that has aphrodisiac qualities). He is laid back and easy-going, he never, ever, loses his temper. He can often come off as The Engineer's blue-collar cousin. Very often a True Craftsman.


    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • The title character of Handyman Saitou in Another World is one of these. His experience in this field makes him invaluable for dealing with traps, locks, and equipment maintenance.

    Comic Books 
  • Handy Smurf in The Smurfs fits the trope in most of its aspects, except that in the appearance department, aside from his trademark overalls and visored hat, he looks no different from your average Smurf.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Jerry "The Marble Faun" Torre, the mild-mannered teenaged handyman who seems to be the only friend of Edith "Big Edie" Beale and her daughter Edith "Little Edie" Beale, the Crazy Cat Lady stars of the documentary Grey Gardens. He seems to be busy helping the Beales keep their filthy, dilapidated mansion semi-habitable.


    Live-Action TV 

  • In Fawlty Towers, we have Mr Stubbs the builder, who, to Sybil Fawlty's relief, sets about putting right the destruction caused by her Henpecked Husband Basil and Mr O'Reilly.
  • Frasier: Marty Crane is an "approximate handyman".
  • Ground Force: In this gardening makeover show, unflappable builder Tommy Walsh is happily building gazebos, patios, and sheds, or laying down acres of wooden decking for the householder to marvel at.
  • Home Improvement:
    • Tim "The Toolman" Taylor is the host of the Show Within a Show Tool Time, where he gives tips and advice for audiences on various repair projects, from plumbing to electrical, and from carpentry to engine repair. However, both on and off the show his confidence far outreaches his abilities, which is why he has a whole different trope named after him.
    • Al Borland is Tim's co-host for the Show Within a Show Tool Time, where he's usually the "Good Idea" counterpart to Tim's "Bad Idea" demonstration. It is notable that when he is the host of a cooking show, with Tim as his co-host, the roles reverse because Tim quickly figures out that he doesn't know how to cook and studies up, while Al remains (over)-confident in his own abilities.
  • Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha: Du-sik. He isn't officially employed but spends his day helping out the residents of Gongjin with various odd jobs, and the residents love him for it. He's capable of a wide variety of things too: he can help sell seafood, make a good coffee, is a licensed real estate agent, and is certified in various forms of carpentry.
  • The Red Green Show's title character has a segment called "Handyman Corner", which sometimes involves actual repair advice (typically his repair skills are shown in the other segments, usually involving duct tape for everything, including river rafts), but more typically contain relationship advice. Red always ends this segment with "If the women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy."
  • Doctor Who. Chief Engineer Perkins from "Mummy on the Orient Express". He even does some work on the TARDIS and (on pointing out that a proper repair job will take some time) is invited by the Doctor to become a companion. Perhaps wisely, he declines.

    Video Games 
  • Dyztopia: Post-Human RPG: Although Akira is one of the best combatants among the Hunters, they focus more on jobs that directly help people with their everyday problems, such as plumbing or fixing appliances. While this did prevent them from attaining a high rank due to their lack of combat and Zodiac Stone missions, they were also well-respected by Zeta's citizens. This is deconstructed because they're still technically subservient to Zetacorp, the corporation responsible for oppressing Zeta's citizens. Additionally, their popularity causes Zazz to become paranoid of them and scheme to kill them to create an Inspirational Martyr for Zetacorp. This is reconstructed when Akira's popularity as a handyman causes Zetacorp's propaganda campaign against them to be less effective than expected and inspires other people to rebel against Zetacorp.
  • Lumino City: Lumi's grandfather bears this exact title, and appears to be quite famous in the city. Lumi herself becomes one over the course of the game.
  • Story of Seasons (2014): Gunther sells building materials and shows up to supervise whenever the Player Character does any sort of construction project.
  • Super Mario Bros.: Although his officially-listed occupation is "plumber", Mario seems to be more of a general handyman. Not that he's shown doing either job, the vast majority of the time.

    Western Animation 
  • Beetlejuice: His first appearance in his "Mr Beetleman" disguise comes in an episode where he becomes a handyman who tries to repair the Deetzes' leaky kitchen faucet. The results are dubious.