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"Your sword only pierced through my belly fat and one kidney: a flesh wound! Have at you, sir!"
Marco (describing medieval soldiers), Animorphs

In fiction, body fat doesn't need to be just an extra encumbrance: for certain people, it's body armor. A fat character will often be resistant or even completely impervious to damage because of their layers of blubber. The flesh will either act like a heap of dough to absorb the punches or like a rubber ball to bounce everything off (often with a comedic "BOING"), and in rare cases bullets or other projectiles will be negated. The character might even go out of their way to build up fat so they can fight more effectively.

This is Truth in Television, but not to the extent that fiction portrays it. For humans it might add some cushioning against a punch or two,note  but it does nothing against a bullet.note  When applied to fictional characters, the protective properties of fat tissue can be exaggerated to superhuman levels.

Kevlard often, but not always, overlaps with Acrofatic, Stout Strength and/or Mighty Glacier. More often than not, it's applied to villainous characters rather than heroic ones, usually because it's meant to be an intimidating display of size trumping skill. Often played for laughs, and almost always a set-up to having the characters discover the Achilles' Heel of the tub of lard in question. Usually, in its less serious incarnations, the ability to repel damage with fat is presented as an inhuman superpower.

It's important to make the distinction between this and Mighty Glacier: Mighty Glacier characters are simply those who are strong and slow, and it more often applies to huge, muscled characters. Kevlard, however, refers specifically to when a character's body fat is the source of their durability. That said, a Kevlard has a high probability of ending up as a Mighty Glacier or a Stone Wall regardless, as it's often difficult to envision such a character as fast or fragile.

Since the goal here is to make a fat character look strong, Weight Taller is often applied in conjunction with it, as a character who's both extremely bulky and able to tower over others in the cast can make for some rather imposing shots when handled properly.

In Video Games, many Giant Mooks and Smash Mooks will use this trope to justify their toughness considering that they are usually wearing less armor than their counterparts.

Characters with a Trampoline Tummy often also have Kevlard in order to protect their internal organs from damage.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Dragon Ball:
    • Buyon, the Monster of the Week from Episode 40 of the original Dragon Ball series, was the first monster to deflect Goku's Kamehameha without taking even a scratch and could only be defeated by freezing him.
    • Mikokatsun in Dragon Ball Z: The World's Strongest is an artificially-created combatant who's incredibly rotund, but his torso is apparently also completely boneless. Though a very agile fighter in his own right, his belly deflects nearly all attacks aimed at it. It takes Goku a tremendous amount of effort to finally tear through it.
    • When Goten and Trunks flub the Fusion Dance in Dragon Ball Z and fuse into an extremely fat Gotenks, the team wonders if having this is a good thing considering how strong the similarly obese Majin Buu is, and that its a sign of power. While Buu may be powerful, Fat Gotenks was just fat and out of shape.
    • To outside observers, Botamo in Dragon Ball Super appears to be this trope, with any Ki Attacks that reach his belly disappearing into it, with no known limit to how much he can take. The truth is that his belly has a means of transporting kinetic energy to another dimension, where it harmlessly dissipates. It requires Goku and other such fighters to think of unconventional ways to defeat him—and luckily for the heroes, Botamo fights only in fighting tournaments with Ring Out rules.
  • Kurita of Eyeshield 21 has this mildly. The average high schooler can't really hurt him, but a lot of the linemen he plays against are around his size and can do plenty of damage.
  • Thor from Kenichi: The Mightiest Disciple claims this as a sumo wrestler's advantage, and indeed, Kenichi seems unable to harm him to any great degree, despite his surprisingly impressive physical strength. Kenichi ends up having to win the fight via ring-out.
  • Mister Heart is one famous example from Fist of the North Star. He was, in fact, the first enemy shown that Ken couldn't simply kill in one blow; his body fat protected him from Ken's fatal Finger Poke of Doom. Ken had to resort a kicking attack made specifically to fight this kind of opponent and force the fat out of the way before striking forward with his killing blow. Shin, on the other hand, says that he would have had no problems with him as his Nanto piercing and slicing techniques would gone through his fat as easily as any other flesh — and proves it by casually cutting his cheek without even touching him. In the movie, Ken was travelling with Rei at the time. Rei, also a Nanto practitioner, offered to fight on Ken's behalf, but Ken refused simply because he wanted to prove his style wouldn't be shut down by blubber.
  • Weaponized by Fat Gum in My Hero Academia: Attacks and weaponry that impact his tremendous belly are nullified by the fat and absorbed into it as he wills it. Presumably, he can suffocate people in there, but he's too much of a Nice Guy to do it and uses his powers strictly to disarm or neutralize his enemies. In the Yakuza Raid, it's revealed that he also can absorb and store impact towards his fat body, allowing him to reverse it as a Counter-Attack which instantly burns all the fat on his body, leaving him mostly defenseless if this didn't finish a fight.
  • Chouji in Naruto can use a jutsu to do this—justified, as he turns into a huge sphere of fat, and it's reasonable to assume his vital organs are somewhere in the center.
    • His father can use a more advanced technique that turns him into a proportional giant. Chouji later learns how to increase the size of individual body parts.
    • During the Sannin arc, Kabuto fails at a lethal strike aimed at Tsunade’s heart. He finds himself wondering if her enormous breasts blocked the attack.
  • In One Piece:
    • During the Black Cat Pirates arc, the Meowban Brothers are hit with the swordsman Zoro's Finishing Move. It nearly slices the skinny one in two, but the fat one survives.
      Zoro: "All that blubber saved him..."
    • Trébol gives off this appearance as well, with objects or attacks thrown at him having no effect, as they just get stuck on his body, but it's actually because of his Stick-Stick Fruit powers, which allows him to generate adhesives from his body. He's not actually fat at all, but is actually covered in a thick coat of sticky goop that he shaped into something resembling a fat body, which allows him to withstand devastating attacks—his goop takes the damage for him.
  • In the Pokémon: The Original Series episode "Wake Up Snorlax!", Ash tries to catch a Snorlax that fell asleep and is blocking a river (actually, the riverbed was already dry because of an overgrown bramble thicket upstream from the Snorlax). The Snorlax's body fat causes the Pokéball to bounce off without triggering. Though it's later revealed that this Snorlax actually already belonged to this episode's character of the day, so that might have also been a factor.
  • Fat Man from the comic series Ratman has this as a literal super power. He can control the fat in his body to allow him to do things such as block knives.
  • In Shakugan no Shana, Shana once fought a minor mook who was so fat that she commented she had to use a lot of force so her sword could penetrate his flesh. This also made it difficult to find his core and permanently kill him.

    Asian Animation 
  • Mechamato: A variant. An accidentally mechanised tyre around Amato's torso forms a sort of belly around Mechamato. Said tyre belly can bounce off Ninjamera charging at him and deflect his nunchucks back in his face.

  • Chris Rock has a "Government Hates Rap" bit where he goes on about how few rapper murderers have been convicted, despite the killings taking place in prominent places and\or taking a long time to execute. For Biggie Smalls he posits that "there must have been some reloading in that drive-by".

    Comic Books 
  • Captain America: Another obese Marvel villain is the Slug. Like the Blob, his fat makes him hard to hurt through attacks to the stomach (though attacks to the head will do just fine). Unlike the Blob, he is unable to move without technical aid and his fighting skill is absolutely pathetic, so he's a Stone Wall at best. He can actually suffocate people using the folds of fat on his body.
  • In the Marvel Universe, The Kingpin is an extremely obese man who can harness the power of kevlard. However, once he actually takes off his shirt and starts fighting, it's apparent his kevlard is also wrapped around a hugely muscular body, as well. This actually varies considerably by the author: originally Kingpin was a subversion of this trope- he looks enormously obese but was in fact a solid block of muscle with abnormally low body fat because he works out constantly.
  • Bouncing Boy of the Legion of Super-Heroes is Nigh-Invulnerable in his inflated form and can rebound off of any surface, or resist any physical impact that hits him without suffering harm.
  • Subversion: a RoboCop comic book had a minor villain that appeared very fat. Lewis tries to drop him with a standard double-tap, just for the villain to shrug it off and casually gloat that what looked like fat was actually custom-made body armor made to look like fat. Lewis addresses this problem by wrestling him to the ground and pressing the barrel of her sidearm square against the center of his forehead. "Wanna try that trick again?"
  • The Blob from X-Men, pictured above, has this as his superpower — he's Nigh-Invulnerable Fat Bastard who can make himself literally immovable (more to do with manipulation of his mass than any idea that being fat is itself a superpower.) How tough is he? At least once, he was totally unfazed by Cyclops' power beam!

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • Po, the protagonist of Kung Fu Panda, is an average fighter overall, but his sheer mass allows him to absorb attacks that would incapacitate a less solidly built person. By the end of the movie, it becomes a Chekhov's Skill as his adipose layers diffuse Tai Lung's deadly Pressure Point attacks into tickles. In the sequel, Mr. Ping points out that Po has lost weight, but while this makes him more agile than before, he also seems to be less able to take a hit.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The fat guy in 3 Ninjas: Until the heroes figure out where his weak point is, their blows simply do not register.
  • Played for drama in Headhunters, where a character survives a car-falling-off-cliff collision only because the obese men on either side of him acted as human airbags.
  • In John Wick: Chapter 2, John fights a sumo wrestler-like assassin who shrugs off John's blows and gunshots. He finally falls when he's shot in the head.
  • Combined with Bulletproof Human Shield in Mad Max: Fury Road. While the People Eater's massive bulk doesn't save him from incoming bullets, it does protect Max, who was hiding behind him.
  • Leatherback in Pacific Rim manages to absorb multiple point blank shots from Gipsy Danger's plasma cannon with his prodigious belly before the blasts burn away enough tissue to begin damaging his vitals. Previous, less girthy kaiju, took only one or two shots to bring down.
  • In Pet, Seth distracts Nate and stabs him in the gut. Though it bleeds, Nate is so fat that he doesn't even notice until he looks down. Then he gets angry and throws Seth across the room.
  • Downplayed in Polar when a member of the A-Team shoots an overweight victim five times with a pistol, only to find to everyone's surprise that he's still alive, so the entire team open up on him with automatic weapons.
  • In Stiletto, Virgil survives Raina's first attack on him because he he is overweight and her blade fails to penetrate far enough to hit any vital organs. He later tells Beck that if he had been a 100 lb weakling, he would be dead.
  • Subverted in the X-Men Origins: Wolverine portrayal of the Blob (see the Comic Book example). While he does appear in his obese glory late in the movie, earlier scenes feature him as lean and muscled, while still an "Immovable Object" (he stops a tank from firing by blocking the barrel). Which, for all the film's liberties, actually makes sense, considering he's actually a mutant whose power is responsible.

  • In Charles McCarry's The Bride of the Wilderness, the character Gustavus Hawkes is able to keep going on with an arrowhead in him—albeit with considerable pain—because it's stuck in his subcutaneous fat. McCarry attempts to justify this by claiming that unusually dense fatty tissue runs in Hawkes's family; an ancestor took a small-caliber bullet with similar aplomb.
  • In Darksiders: The Abomination Vault, Death and War fight a demon that is so fat that even if their weapons cut into it, they cannot hurt it. The solution? One grabs the upper jaw, another grabs the lower, then they twist it inside out.
  • In one of The Destroyer books, Chiun relates to Remo the legend of how the sumo came to be: as a bodyguard group for somebody who expected a Master of Sinanju to come after him, with the fat a specific defense against the art's ludicrously powerful Pressure Point techniques. Not that it did him any good, but as a remembrance one part of the test for mastery in Sinanju requires the student to defeat a sumo in a ritual match. Remo is undergoing such a match while Chiun tells him the story (interspersed with telling him the rules of a sumo match, which happen to negate all of the easy ways Remo could win it).
  • In Monstrous Regiment Sergeant Jackrum claims his fat is like armor, and that a man once stuck a sword in it up to the hilt, and was very surprised when he got nutted in response. Of course, Jackrum said that to reassure the troops about attacking the enemy keep.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire:
    • Lord Wyman Manderley, a highly rotund northern lord, survives a throat slash because of his corpulence. He sustains the injury after reveling a bit too much in his subtle punishment to the Freys.
    • There's also Strong Belwas, an ex-gladiator whose signature was to let each enemy cut his massive, scar-covered belly once before killing them. His fat also sort of served him as a protection when he ate a bowl of poisoned food intended for Daenerys. It would be lethal for a smaller person, but Belwas survived, though he became horribly ill and lost most of his weight. Fortunately, he is starting to recover.
  • Spenser: Spenser and Hawk have to go arrest Zachary — no shooting allowed — in the novel The Judas Goat:
    Hawk speaks:
    "Kathie say this Zachary a bone-breaker."
    "How big is he?"
    Hawk said, "Kath?"
    "Very big," she said.
    "Bigger than me," I said, "or Hawk?"
    "Oh yes. I mean really big."
    "I weigh about two hundred pounds," I said. "How much would you say he weighs?"
    "He weighs three hundred five pounds. I know. I heard him tell Paul one day."
    I looked at Hawk. "Three hundred five?"
    "But he only six feet seven," Hawk said.
    "Is he fat, Kathie?" I was hopeful.
    "No, not really. He used to be a weightlifter."
    "Well, so, Hawk and I do a lot on the irons."
    "No, I mean like those Russians. You know, a real weightlifter, he was the champion of somewhere."
    "And he looks like a Russian weightlifter?"
    "Yes, like that. Paul and he used to watch them on television. He has that fat look that you know is strong."
  • Star Wars Expanded Universe: In both Canon and Legends, Hutts - a species of giant slugs with arms and a toad-like head - are typically portrayed as fat and having their minions doing their dirty work for them. Both continuities show that the fat isn't all flab, but also muscle and cushioning. As such, Hutts are very hard to kill by conventional methods, with them even being able to shrug off blaster bolts (and in Legends, this also makes them unappetizing to eat for large creatures). The Hutts didn't become some of the most notorious crime lords in the galaxy by throwing money at people alone (otherwise, the bipeds would have just robbed them, and Hutts are Faster Than They Look). In the canon novel, Bloodline, Leia earned the name "Huttslayer" from killing Jabba because of how difficult killing a Hutt by strangling him with a metal chain would normally be for a human. It's also revealed that Leia was able to do so by unconsciously tapping into the Dark Side of the Force for a strength boost.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Mad Men mentions a fat girl in Sally's class whom the other kids poke with pencils because they think she can't feel it.
  • In an episode of Manswers revealed you need to be over 1000lbs for your fat to be able to stop a bullet from killing you.
  • MythBusters tested the viability of this against bullets in their second "What is bulletproof?" special. When using a layer of fat equivalent to what the fattest man their researchers could come up with would have had protecting his vital organs as a baseline, the bullet went right through both the layer of fat and the simulate for the internal organs. The MythBusters thus conclude that fat could eventually stop a bullet, but not in anything human.

    Mythology & Religion 
  • In The Bible, Eglon, the king of Moab, gets stabbed by an Israelite in an assassination attempt. He's so fat that the Israelite pushes the sword into him, blade, hilt and all, and it doesn't come out the back. (Judges 3:12) He still dies, though.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The Grael from 50 Fathoms, being a race of seal-people, have a natural layer of blubber, which is thick enough to act as armour.
  • Played with in the Polish RPG Afterbomb Madness, one of the playable races, the Flaccids are humans with a mutation that gives them extremely loose skin that looks like it could fit on someone three times their size, they get around this by wrapping it around their limbs and using staples, piercings and the like to hold it in place, on the plus side their skin can, among other things, heal superficial wounds quickly and act as natural armor. The gamebook actually lampshades the fact that people who never saw a Flaccid before assume "loose skin" and "resistance to injury" means they play this trope straight.
  • Dungeons & Dragons gives us a feat aptly called 'Obese' in the Book of Vile Darkness. It increases constitution by 2 at the expense of dexterity, thus increasing your hit points.
  • A scenario for the Judge Dredd RPG had literal Kevlard in a new variant of Boing! (a type of very resilient rubber plastic you could encase yourself in then bounce improbably far and fast) called Spunng! being developed. It consisted of a drug that when ingested converted all subcontaneous fat to a type of Boing! - a group of four really fat guys take it and go on a crime spree - flattening anyone who gets in their way by bouncing into them at high speed with bullets just bouncing out of their Spunng! enhanced bodies. However Spunng! was highly flammable rendering them very vulnerable to incendiary (if not bounced out), high explosive or laser fire.
  • The disadvantage 'Obese' in Savage Worlds gives you a bonus on Toughness (which is what keeps you from taking Wounds) at the cost of movement speed. Some builds can really abuse that.
  • Warhammer and Warhammer 40,000: Servants of Nurgle tend towards looking like this, their bodies actually growing massive by being filled with cancerous growths, although even so, the mass is practically incidental; their resilience comes from the difficulty of doing enough damage to them for it to actually be worse than their usual rotting-alive state.
  • Justified in World Tree (RPG). In that universe, the ability to keep living is based on your spirit's grip on your flesh. This can be increased either by taking damage on a regular basis (thus increasing your "grip strength") or by adding more flesh (giving the spirit more to hang on to).
  • Fatty zombies in Zombicide are zombies who, by virtue of being fat, take much more punishment than your average walker or runner zombie.

    Video Games 
  • Sylvia Scarlett from 2Dark is very fat, and is the boss with the highest amount of health in the game, who actually says "Hee hee hee! That tickles!" or "Try a little harder and I might just feel a little sting", in response to getting shot. To offset that, her level is the only one in the game where the player can get a machine gun (though this all-but-requires killing her security), so that they can still bring her down in head-on combat. (Though poisoning her food is the preferred alternative.)
  • The Battle Cats:
    • Sumo Cat is highly resistant to damage with his huge, fat body. It weighs him down in his first two forms, but as Riceball Cat, he's able to move over twice as fast as the basic cat.
    • Weightlifter Cat's first two forms are more muscular than fat, but this applies to the true form, Pizza Cat. His gut hangs down out of his shirt, but his HP is quite high for his range. Cop Cat has a similar build to contrast the Lean and Mean Hitman Cat, and is similarly tanky.
  • The Lard powerup in The Binding of Isaac makes Isaac fat, and raises his maximum HP. In addition, the variants of the "Fatty" enemy have large health pools compared to other enemies found on their floors, and Fat Bats are much tankier than the standard bats. The bosses Mega Fatty, The Cage and Chimera all have tremendous amounts of health compared to other bosses of similar difficulty, and are all morbidly obese; Sisters Vis used to be an example until their health was nerfed with the release of Repentance.
  • The Adjudicator in Demon's Souls qualifies, although the Meat Cleaver stuck in his chest was a pretty good indicator of where you had to hit him.
  • One of the heroic abilities your best commanders may receive in Dominions is Unequaled Obesity, which raises the commander's hitpoints with no evident downsides. How that commander spontaneously develops said obesity within a month following undisclosed heroic actions, is left as an exercise to the player.
  • Klumps in Donkey Kong Country are fat Kremlings that have a big gut and cannot be defeated with a Goomba Stomp by Diddy Kong due to him being too light to do so. Donkey Kong can stomp on them with no trouble since he's heavier and stronger than Diddy.
  • In Dungeon Keeper, Bile Demons are so obese they're spherical, in the sequel take up 4 tiles in a Lair where most creatures take one, eat a lot, and are very slow. However their health is miles beyond any other creature you can access without advanced buildings, and they're immune to slap damage.
  • In Dwarf Fortress, fat realistically serves as a layers of tissue that may take damage from an attack instead of a more important body part. More bizarrely, in Adventure Mode you can repeatedly set yourself on fire and put it out after a while to remove all the fat in your body. If you survive you become effectively fireproof because heat does not kill you through burning, it kills you by melting tissue (which except at very high temperatures is usually fat) to make you bleed to death.
  • The Slobbers in Epic Mickey have this immunity; physically hitting them in their guts simply bounces you away while they laugh.
  • Expert have those overweight Giant Mook enemies who moves around slowly, but can tank multiple shots (even if you're using rockets) thanks to their immense girth.
  • The Fatal Fury series has Cheng Sinzan, who blocks attacks with his large belly.
  • In reference to Heart's example, fat enemies in Fist of the North Star: Ken's Rage have a separate health track representing their bulk that must be depleted before they can actually be harmed.
  • In For Honor, the samurai Heavy class, the Shugoki, is a massive sumo-style warrior who is noticeably overweight. The Shugoki's defensive bonus manifests in the form of an Uninterruptable Stance: the first hit a Shugoki takes doesn't stagger him the way other characters are outside of certain special moves or combos, which allows them to punish overly aggressive opponents with a mighty strike from their spiked kanabo. However, subsequent hits while this "hyperarmor" is down deal increased damage, forcing the Shugoki to time their slow attacks with it. While his Uninterruptible Stance is up, the Shugoki also takes a 90% damage reduction, meaning that they can shrug off attacks that would kill literally any other character in the game, including direct hits from catapults.
  • Hotline Miami:
    • The game's main example of this is the Thugs, a type of mobster who are notably fatter than normal ones. They're immune to melee weapons and take a while to die from gunfire. The sequel Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number adds the ability for melee-only characters to knock them down and spend several seconds brutally beating them to death.
    • The Thugs succeed the game's first boss, the Producer, from a few levels earlier before their introduction; said boss behaves almost the same way as them, the difference being that he can only be damaged with a shotgun.
    • Averted with the Dodgers, who first appear in Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number. They essentially serve as an inversion of the Thugs, being immune to gunfire and only killable with melee strikes. However, said immunity merely comes from the fact that they dodge any incoming bullets (hence their name), since they're not fat and die from a single melee hit like any normal enemy.
  • Temperance (a morbidly obese zombie) from House of the Dead 4. Even though you could actually stop him from attacking you by shooting his head, it was impossible to do any real damage to him via your bullets. You had to drop a clock on his head to beat him.
  • The Large Body and Fat Bandit heartless in the Kingdom Hearts series are immune to most physical attacks from the front because of their belly fat.
  • One of the effects you can get in Kingdom of Loathing via a Crimbo skill is "A Few Extra Pounds", which adds extra HP depending on your level.
  • Fat zombies in The Last Stand are three to four times as tough as regular zombies. It makes no difference on how fast they can run either.
  • Left 4 Dead provides a surprising subversion: while the heavily-muscled and aptly named Tank has the highest health, the next largest of the infected cast, the Boomer, has the lowest. Justified by its size being pressurized bile rather than fat.
  • Chuchus in The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask are the game's resident Blob Monster enemy, and are fairly weak and easy to defeat. However, they absorb blunt impacts from Goron Link's fists and can't be hurt from his punches.
  • OFF has the third guardian, Enoch, who has thick enough fat to make attacking him straight on completely and utterly useless, and even when you manage to find how to hurt him, he still has ridiculous health, losing only to the Queen and a Superboss in sheer tankiness.
  • Overwatch plays with this trope in a very literal way with Roadhog: He's a comically oversized guy who only wears shoulder armor. Despite this, he's tied with a Mini-Mecha for highest innate health at 600. The other Tanks, men, women and gorillas in Powered Armor, have about 500 health that's supplanted by Shields (which regenerate when out of combat) or Armor (which has damage mitigation).
  • Planescape: Torment has "The Stone Gullet of L'Phall The Gross" - which has the backstory that L'Phall was a respected, but obese professor. At a banquet, some folks decided to play a practical joke on him by slipping some Flesh to Stone potion in his wine, intending to turn him back after they had a good laugh. Hours later, L'Phall complained of stomach pain - it turned out that he ate so much at the banquet that it diluted the potion, and only turned his stomach to stone. He lived for many years after that, and his stone gullet was removed after his death as a curiousity. The Nameless One can eat it (it has the consistency of stale bread) to gain some resistance to (stomach) acid.
  • The most specific example in Pokémon is the "Thick Fat" Ability, which halves any Fire or Ice damage the user takes.
    • In general, heftier-looking Pokémon tend to have higher base HP, notable examples including Snorlax, Slaking, Hariyama, Emboar, and Wailord. In a partial subversion, they don't always have the defenses to back that up (or at least specialize in only one type of defense, such as Snorlax, who's great at standing up to special attacks, but not so much to physical ones).
    • Stoutland resembles an obese Scottish Terrier, and its best stats besides Attack are Defense and Special Defense.
  • Super Punch-Out!! (arcade) introduces Bear Hugger, a fat boxer who is immune to body blows; punching him in the stomach will just cause him to stick his tongue out at you, and you have to take him down with punches to the head.
    • In the SNES version, Bear Hugger is vulnerable in the midsection when he taunts you; hitting him at the right time will stun him. Mad Clown in the SNES version is another fat boxer who plays similarly to Bear Hugger. They'll both shrug off body blows in most cases.
    • In the Wii version, Bear Hugger actually takes some slight damage when punched in the belly, but it's still a better strategy to go for the face.
    • Inverted with King Hippo in the NES and Wii games as his big belly is his weak spot. In the Wii game's Title Defense mode, he even tapes a manhole cover over it.
  • Propagation: Paradise Hotel has the two Dead Weight zombie bosses, Twiddledee and Twidledum, who tanks plenty of hits because of their girth.
  • There are enemies in Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game that repel attacks using their prodigious girth.
  • Black Bull in Shadow the Hedgehog is an enormous, flying beast with one eye and several layers of blubbery fat. Attacking its eye is the surest way to bring it down, as its fat makes it mostly impervious to damage. (Mostly because attacking its body still causes damage, but at a slower rate than attacking its eye.)
  • The "Big Ben" class of enemies in Streets of Rage have big beer bellies and can knock you down with a big backhanded slap or curling into a ball and rolling into you. Because they're so fat, they have more health than most average mooks.
  • King K. Rool in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate can use his large belly like armor. Some of his attacks that involve his belly can absorb hits and plow through the enemy, but if it absorbs too much damage, it will crack and stun him. His down special is a counterattack that involves using his gut to bounce the opponent's attack back at them.
  • Team Fortress 2: Downplayed: the Heavy Weapons Guy has both the biggest girth and the most hit points of the nine classes, but he's also one of the only two classes wearing body armor in-game.
  • Bob from Tekken purposely gained weight so he could have this advantage.
  • Earl in ToeJam & Earl is fatter than the noodle-man ToeJam, which carries over into gameplay where he has more health than him.
  • In the Wario Land games, Wario transforms into Fat Wario if an enemy throws food into his mouth. In this form, any enemies that try to hurt Wario will harmlessly bounce off his stomach.
  • In the second and third What Did I Do to Deserve This, My Lord? games, "Fat" monsters can evolve if you starve some of your monsters to death. Fat Lizardmen, in particular, are incredibly durable compared to the garden variety lizardmen, with nearly double the amount of hit points and defense.
  • This is how Bear Druids, in World of Warcraft, fulfill their tanking role. Other tanks have shields and weapons to block and parry oncoming attacks. Bear Druids have neither, but have substantially more armor rating (especially through talents like "Thick Hide") and health points in order to simply soak up the damage. Oh, and to do this, they literally become bears.
  • Giggordo from Wrack, a huge monster with a fleshy, meaty girth which allows him to tank plenty of hits. Even heavy weapons like shotguns and grenades deals Scratch Damage.

  • In The Beast Legion, Sglutton posses the ability to expand his body to absorb & repel attacks although limited.
  • Sawbuck of the Felt from Homestuck can take a lot of damage, and hops through time every time he's hit by something, making him a legendary nuisance to kill.
  • In Problem Sleuth, Ace Dick's "Auto-parry" technique involves taking the attack in the gut. It's still incredibly painful, but doesn't result in the loss of any Gumption Wafers
  • Zukahnaut's protagonist survived a hail of small arms fire unscathed after the bullets bounced off his rotund body.

    Web Original 
  • According to SOTF-TV's lore one of the previous winners of a season was one Archibald "Archie" Stewart, who took a ridiculous amount of punishment over his run. The official explanation was that the layer of fat he had on him lessened the impact of what appeared to be grievous injuries. Subverted/deconstructed, when after he won he was unable to leave the shopping mall he was fighting in due to the cumulative amount of injuries and had a near-death experience in the hospital.

    Western Animation 
  • Animaniacs: The Hip Hippos are a pair of hippopotami who are always looking for excitement and danger, but because they're so big and heavy they're able to No-Sell anything that happens to them (without realizing it). Their shorts revolve around them wandering around locations wondering where the dangerous, exciting thing is while it fails to affect them (and instead causes Amusing Injuries to the misguided zoologist who's constantly attempting to "save" them).
  • The Batman: Cluemaster, an extremely obese Basement-Dweller in this version, shrugs off a flying kick from Batman, whose leg gets stuck in the flab.
  • In Celebrity Deathmatch, Fiona Apple was pitted against John Popper. Not only did John Popper's fat protect him from Fiona's punches, it caused her limbs to shatter upon impact. He ultimately won when he rolled over on top of her, squashing her flat.
  • In the Rocko's Modern Life episode, "Uniform Behavior", Heffer gets into an accident when he borrows his dad's car. Since he was too fat for the seatbelt, he was launched out of the vehicle, but due to his size, he was completely unharmed. The same could not be said for the car however. Needless to say, his dad was pissed, and made him get a job to pay for the damages.
  • SheZow: SheZow temporarily develops this power when she becomes overweight in "She Phat"; being able to bounce Señor Yo-Yo's yo-yos off her fat.
  • The Simpsons, "Homerpalooza": Homer Simpson uses his body fat to stop cannonballs when performing in a freak show. His body still accumulates damage over doing this repeatedly, which would have inevitably killed him if he continued.
    • In "King-Size Homer," Homer successfully stops a nuclear meltdown with his morbid obesity.
      Bart: I find it ironic that for once Dad's butt prevented the release of toxic gas.
    • And in "Homer the Smithers" when the two title characters get into a fistfight, Smithers' fist gets stuck in Homer's stomach, which prompts Homer to laugh and push Smithers' head. Until he gets angry and bites, at which point they both separate.
    • Defied in "Homer Badman": Once Rock Bottom is forced to display a list of corrections to their many erroneous reports, one of them is "Bullets do not bounce off of fat guys".
  • Once on Star Wars Rebels, recurring minor villain Azmorigan gets Shot in the Ass with a blaster bolt, but because he's a Fat Bastard extraordinaire, he only feels a brief moment of pain.

    Real Life 
  • As a general rule for any combat before the advent of firearms, an inch of fat could mean the difference between survival or having an organ ruptured.
  • The Gladiator Games of Ancient Rome. Despite the Sword and Sandal stereotype of relatively lean, muscular gladiators, historic gladiators lived on fat-building diets. The layer of fat helped protect them from the bloody, slicing wounds that audiences loved. That's one hypothesis, at least; the other, backed by the Roman love of realistic art, is that gladiators ran about the same spectrum of body types as modern powerlifters, and that their grain- and legume-heavy diet was simply the cheapest way to provide a high-calorie, high-protein diet.
  • Pretty much the whole point of Sumo wrestling of Japan; beneath the "fat", the wrestlers are built with raw muscles and strict diet.
  • A lot of polar creatures have a thick layer of blubber under their skin to handle the cold climate better. The walrus's blubber, helped in part by its thick hide, is thick enough to withstand several tuskings from rival walruses and stand a better chance against polar bears.
  • In 2008, an obese Australian woman was infected with necrotizing fasciitis, AKA flesh-eating bacteria, a deadly infection that rapidly destroys tissue and can kill within hours. She survived in part because her extra fat gave her more flesh the bacteria could destroy before it would kill her.
  • Fat provides padding, preventing your bones from always rubbing up against hard objects in the environment. Without a little bit of fat, just sitting down would be uncomfortable, which is why skinny people dislike sitting on hard chairs even more than usual. Internal pads of fat also cushion some joints, organs such as the kidneys, and the eyeballs. Losing too much weight too fast can actually be life-threatening, as the kidneys can droop downward so much that it hampers the flow of blood and urine in and out of them (nephroptosis).
  • Seemed to prove true for a time in one murder case where a man tried to kill his morbidly obese wife and ended up stabbing her 12 times before his short knife finally hit something vital.
    • One Emergency Room doctor reported seeing an obese man that had been stabbed in the stomach with a gutting knife, which is a knife designed to help hunters remove the guts of their kills. They remarked that on most people, the patient would have been wheeled into the ER with their intestines in their lap, if not to the morgue. The man didn't even need stitches to treat the wound.
  • Pigs are sometimes believed to be immune to snake venom. In reality, they are as vulnerable as anyone. However, since the venom is only lethal when getting into the blood and getting it injected into adipose tissue does next to nothing, this trope provides pigs with considerable protection against snake bites.
  • Male elephant seals have thick layers of blubber and skin, especially on their necks. These protect them when they fight for dominance, where they viciously bite each other's head and neck region and try to angle themselves so the rival bites into an area of thicker blubbler.


Video Example(s):


Monkey vs Dragon

This is the final battle with Monkey King and the Dragon King, with both of them kaiju-sized.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (4 votes)

Example of:

Main / BehemothBattle

Media sources: