Kell Tainer: Why "Runt"?
Runt: It is accurate. Compared to my siblings, I am tiny. None of them would fit into a fighter cockpit.
So you've got this Proud Warrior Race Guy on the team who's 6 feet 5 inches and can bench press a semi, but all his relatives have a couple of feet and half a ton on him. Basically, the Large Runt is The Big Guy who is actually quite small by the standards of his race. Usually he's been ostracized for being short and prone to joining the Ragtag Band of Misfits. Sometimes it might justify a Fluffy the Terrible name. Normal Fish in a Tiny Pond is a similar trope about aptitude at some task instead of just physical size.
Anime and Manga
- One Piece: Vice Admiral Bastille is stated to be a giant, yet he's shown to be shorter than other giants (and not much taller from naturally big humans).
- Havoc Inc: Ural Christophe Deck is about 6 feet tall and can bend metal bars with his bare hands. His Psycho Ex-Girlfriend Knife is a head taller, and background material states that male Draconian Canids are supposed to be the larger gender.
- Asterix at the Olympic Games: Rhodes sends one colossal athlete, with his equally-proportioned brother in the crowd. When the Rhodian easily wins every strength-based event, his brother is asked if their whole family is the same...
Oh no, our older brother is much stronger! But he couldn't make it this year: he still hasn't gotten over the clout our ma gave him!
- An odd variant: in one Legion Of Superheroes reboot, Colossal Boy (normally a Sizeshifter) was depicted as being from a planet where everyone was a giant. His power, compared to the rest of his people, was being able to shrink.
- In The Muppets Robin Hood, Little John is played by Sweetums, who claims it's not an Ironic Nickname; he's small for an ogre!
Film - Animated
- In Shrek Forever After, Shrek is shown to be much smaller than other ogres.
- Runt of the Litter from Chicken Little, despite what his name suggests, is an extremely huge and fat pig who towers above his classmates.
Film - Live-Action
- Marvel Cinematic Universe: With his height of 6'2", Loki is so small for a Frost Giant that his biological father Laufey, who himself towers over 7'5" tall, left him to die as an infant.
- Rubeus Hagrid in the Harry Potter books stands eleven and a half feet tall, making him a giant by human standards, but it turns out he's only half-giant. Full-blooded giants tend to be over twenty feet tall — except Hagrid's half-brother Grawp, who's shown to be another example of this trope at "only" sixteen feet in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.
- In The BFG, the Big Friendly Giant is 24 feet tall, but the evil man-eating giants are 50 feet tall.
- Flight Officer Hohass Ekwesh, callsign "Runt", from the X-Wing Series' Wraith Squadron books. He stands 2 meters tall (close to 6′7″, for those who don't know metric), but explains at his introduction that he's very undersized for his species.
- In Isaac Asimov's Azazel series, one short involves a man who was turned into a Chick Magnet, so he describes how a guy 7 by 5 feet and all muscle visited him and stated that he and his three brothers are going to be very displeased if he won't choose their sister out of all the girls who are after him. When the Chick Magnet asks whether the brothers resemble him, the other guy states he is short and weak due to a childhood disease, and his brothers are "fine figures of men" a couple of feet taller.
Live Action TV
- Marshall from How I Met Your Mother is often teased by his brothers (7' and 7'1" respectively) for being a shrimpy 6′4″.
- The main character of the Hungarian puppet show Süsü, a sárkány is an enormous one-headed dragon, but his siblings are even bigger and are multiple head cases.
- Billy Cepeda of Sirens (US) is noted by his girlfriend's ex to have a large penis. He claims he's the smallest of his siblings, to the piqued interest of a gay coworker.
- On Once Upon a Time the first giant introduced was one called "Tiny." While huge by human standards, his giant siblings are much larger than he is, making his Ironic Name not so ironic after all.
- In Wizards of Waverly Place, a recurring character is Hugh Normous, the runt of a family of giants. Subverted in a later episode, where Hugh learns that he was actually adopted and is biologically human. He's actually a full head taller than both of his birth parents.
- Kimahri of the Ronso in Final Fantasy X is larger than any human character, but something like a head shorter than any other Ronso.
- In Pokémon Sun and Moon, we are introduced to Xurkitree, one of the Ultra Beasts (basically Pokémon from other dimensions). While not the largest Pokémon by any means- or even the largest Ultra Beast- it still stands at an impressive twelve feet tall, putting it well on the tall side compared to most Pokémon. However, in Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, the player can actually visit the dimension Xurkitree comes from; a glance in the background will reveal some truly gigantic (as in, big enough to be seen from miles away) Xurkitree, suggesting that only the smallest ones came through the Ultra Wormhole.
- Rengar of League of Legends is a giant, bulky lion man. But as his backstory reveals, he's actually small for a Killash Vastaya. Down to being the runt of his litter.
- Peter of Peter Is the Wolf doesn't even need to change clothes when he shifts to wolf form. To grind it in further, his girlfriend (whom he turned into a lycanthrope) is 11 feet 8 inches as a wolf.
- In Dominic Deegan, werewolf "runts" cannot fully transform, and have even more difficulty controlling their emotions than their kin.
- Iratu from Slightly Damned is initially stated to be large even by earth demon standardsnote but later we learn he was given a magic pendant by his adoptive angel father that greatly increases his size and strength. He is actually the shortest earth demon in Hell, however even in his natural size he is still a head taller and much buffer than the 6 foot tall fire demons.
- Steven Universe:
- Gem fusions are always bigger than the gems that make them up. They'll often be inhumanly gigantic, but some fusions (including Garnet, Stevonnie, and Smoky Quartz) are only somewhat large compared to humans, because the gems that make them up are so small. Some singular gems (like Jasper and Rose Quartz) are larger than the smallest fusions.
- Yellow Diamond, Blue Diamond, and White Diamond are quite Large and in Charge—matching some of the biggest fusions in height. Pink Diamond is much smaller than her fellows, but still somewhere between six and twelve feet.
- In "Change Your Mind", we are introduced to Obsidian, a fusion of Garnet, Amethyst, Pearl, and Steven. Peridot is impressed by how massive Obsidian is, but then we see Obsidian in relation to the opponent. The fusion barely makes up to White Diamond's Humongous Mecha's ankle.
- Junko from Storm Hawks is somewhat weaker but slightly smarter than average for a Wallop. He's still 10 times as strong as most humans, and the least intelligent one on the team.
- The Littlest Giant from Ren & Stimpy is "merely huge" in the words of one of the normal sized giants who outsize him.
- Owen from Total Drama is a Big Fun contestant taller than nearly everyone else in the cast who says he's the runt of his siblings.
- The Scotsman from Samurai Jack is a towering muscular Boisterous Bruiser but when we meet his clan, we see he is actually one of the smaller members. This also applies to their personalities as for all the Scotsman's shouting and Flowery Insults, he is actually the mellow one and this is also the reason he travels so much.
- Tetramand princess Looma Red Wind from Ben 10: Omniverse is much smaller than the rest of her species, being around six or seven feet tall, rather than over ten. Despite this, she can easily lift a father who dwarfs her, and still cannot find a Tetramand who can defeat her in combat. For context, females of her species are larger and more powerful than the males, and can only marry those who defeat them in combat.
- The DC Super Hero Girls version of Wonder Woman is taller than most full-grown men, but she's not even fully grown—adult Amazons like her mother are over eight feet tall.
- This video shows a giant elephant seal attacking cars...but he is either a juvenile or a runt by elephant seal standards, since large breeding males have even larger bodies and huge flabby trunks.