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Specs of Awesome

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Benjamin Franklin: A founding father of the U.S.A., inventor of a more efficient wood burning stove, and stone cold badass.

Popular culture, especially in the West, tends to portray glasses as nerdy and as a sign of weakness. However, for some reason, if the one with the glasses isn't a meek Non-Action Guy, they are surprisingly likely to be this.

This trope has only two requirements: you must be badass, and you must wear glasses while demonstrating your badassery. Often overlaps with Badass Bookworm and Genius Bruiser, in which case the wearer is also likely to be The Stoic and frequently display Awesomeness by Analysis. These, however, are merely common traits, not requirements.

To qualify for this trope, the character in question must be badass while still wearing glasses, otherwise it's The Glasses Come Off. Distinct from Cool Shades in that these are actual, transparent glasses. Compare and Contrast Stoic Spectacles, where the character is witty but not necessarily action oriented.



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    Anime & Manga 

    Fan Works 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Major Hank Marshall (pictured about to punch his creepy superior officer) in Blue Sky - which makes it all the more heartbreaking that when he does take the glasses off, it's to wipe away tears.
  • In The Ipcress File and its sequels, there was Harry Palmer, a Cockney spy in National Health Service specs, way back in the 1960s. At the time, this was a notable subversion of the suave upper-class British intelligence agent epitomized by James Bond.
  • Egon Spengler from Ghostbusters and its Animated Adaptations The Real Ghostbusters and Extreme Ghostbusters.
  • Peter Parker in The Amazing Spider-Man. The powers he gains don't improve his poor eyesight at all, so he still keeps using glasses and contacts.
  • Besides coming up with the plan to take down Al Capone, Treasury Agent Oscar Wallace shows himself to be this in The Untouchables. During the Canadian border battle, when his tommy gun jams, he charges one of the hoods and knocks him unconscious with the gun butt. Sadly, after the battle his badassery will be short-lived.
  • In Kingsman: The Secret Service, all of the Kingsmen wear them. They double as heads-up displays when necessary and transmit information back to headquarters in a livestream. Awesome indeed.
  • Kevin inSin City (and the original graphic novels) is a very formidable antagonist to Marv until he loses his head.


    Live-Action TV 

    Video Games 

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 
  • In The Gamer's Alliance, Richelieu wears glasses and is one of Alent's most powerful mages who has beaten several strong enemies.
  • Taylor from Worm wears glasses, and attaches old lenses to her costume's goggles.
  • Shows up frequently in RWBY, with Professor Ozpin and Doctor Oobleck as the most obvious examples.

    Western Animation 

    Real Life 
  • Theodore Roosevelt, noted glasses-wearer, has a well earned reputation for badassery, extending well into Memetic territory. See his page for further details.
  • The "DMC" part of Run–D.M.C.. Darryl McDaniels is almost unrecognizable without his trademark specs.
  • Hideo Kojima. That is all.


Example of: