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Utility Belt

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It's like a Wal-Mart you clip around your waist!

Robin: Where'd you get a live fish, Batman?
Batman: The true crimefighter always carries everything he needs in his utility belt, Robin.

Gadgets are a requisite for any Badass Normal Superhero or Batman Parody, especially if he's Crazy-Prepared. But where does he keep all of his wonderful toys? Why, in his Utility Belt, of course!

Stuff that might be found in a Utility Belt:

Note that this is usually not the same as a Bag of Holding. A Bag of Holding is generally used to just pile in as much as you can when looting (i.e. removing stuff from the enemy base/dungeon) while a utility belt holds carefully chosen key items in specific, easy to access places to take them with you for use at the enemy base/dungeon.

Contrast with Too Many Belts, where the belts are fashion accessories which Do Nothing.

Not to be confused with Rob Liefeld's pouches, which are NEVER USED.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • My Hero Academia
    • Aizawa wears one although we don’t see much of what’s actually in it. It likely has a sheath attached for his tanto knife though he’s rarely illustrated with the thing, and one of the pouches likely has the eye drops he needs to combat his quirk-induced dry eye. It does make a lot of sense to wear it as he’s an underground hero who doesn’t have a flashy costume to hide stuff in like some other heroes.
    • Sato has one with pouches full of the candy he needs to eat to fuel his quirk
    • Yaoyaorazu has one that can carry a book, as she sometimes needs to look up molecular structures of items to create them.
    • Komori has one that carries her spray bottles which she uses to add moisture to grow her fungal spores.

    Comic Books 
  • Batman, natch. In every incarnation. There is even a Wikipedia article about it. In the Planetary crossover, in which it turns out that every universe has a version of Batman except the usual Planetary universe, the Batman who resembles the TV show from the Sixties pulls, from a normal-sized belt pouch, an aerosol can the size of a can of spray paint containing "Bat-Female-Villain-Repellent-Spray". It actually works, too. For a long period, the belt was shown as having a series of small capsules around it (and how everything fitted in those capsules was generally handwaved, although attempts have been made to explain it). Starting with Frank Miller, some artists drew Batman with decent-sized belt pouches, and this became standard when he got a new belt during Batman: No Man's Land.
    • The original Kathy Kane had a utility purse.
    • Nightwing shakes things up a bit by keeping his stuff in wristband/gauntlets and boot tops from time to time, since his costume does not always include a belt.
    • Red Hood kept most of his gadgets in simple jacket pockets for a while.
    • Tim Drake used compressed canisters in his first Robin costume and on bandoliers as Red Robin to streamline the look.
    • In one Silver Age comic book story ("The Joker's Utility Belt!", featured in Batman #73), The Joker devised his own utility belt to counter Batman's. It failed when Batman (stripped of his own utility belt) swiped items from the Joker's belt to use against him.
    • Batzarro wears his upside down with all of the pouches open giving you the sense that everything has fallen out.
    • Stephanie Brown tried to bring a bit of realism to the utility belt when she assumed the Batgirl identity in her series. She wore the traditional waist-belt, but also wore numerous other belts to give her enough pockets and pouches to actually carry all this equipment. She skirted the edges a bit, like all the Bats, but never outright broke the well-established real world physics of pockets.
      • And that mysterious utility belt that she wore on her thigh since her debut? It was empty. She wore it because she liked the way it made her look.
  • Spider-Man wears a utility belt to hold extra web cartridges, spider-tracers, his camera, and his "Spider-signal" flashlight buckle. He wears it under his shirt but since it leaves only a small bulge, and he is usually moving around so much, most people don't even realize he has one. Ben Reilly wears his on the outside with his Scarlet Spider costume.
    • The CBS TV series gave him a visible belt, as did the tie-in game to the 2012 film.
    • The MCU version has pouches for his web cartridges on the belt area of his first Stark-made suit, though these are absent on his later outfits.
  • Top Cow Productions comic book series Freshmen. The character Norrin has no abilities except for a fairly useless utility belt.
  • In Quantum and Woody, Quantum has a fully-laden utility belt.
  • Watchmen: As the previous page quote showed (see the Quotes page now), Nite Owl had one.
  • Judge Dredd has the titular future lawman and his co-workers wearing these. Contents include spare ammo, handcuffs and other general police-work equipment, as well as more comic-booky gadgetry such as gas grenades and cling lines.
  • Captain America is sometimes depicted as wearing one post-2000, Depending on the Artist. It's usually shown carrying explosives, or other more specialized weapons for when Cap's shield isn't the best option.
  • Initially, Black Lightning used a belt that generated electric bolts and a force field. Later, he was depicted as having internalized electric powers.
  • X-Men: Longshot has bandoliers for his throwing knives because it bothered Art Adams when characters with weapons like this just pulled them out of nowhere. Ironically, given the connection between Longshot and Shatterstar, this may have been the inspiration for the Rob Liefeld tradition of characters with belts full of pouches they don't use for anything.

    Fan Works 
  • The Secret Return of Alex Mack: Terawatt gets a belt, partly to carry small tools like a diamond-coated wiresaw, but mostly for extra energy bars, because her powers are Cast from Calories.
  • Viridian: The Green Guide: Izuku finds a dark-green tool waist apron whilst at a hardware store, and decides to buy and use it to safely carry and store his vigilante weapons.
  • All Mixed Up!: Mariana Mag repurposes her old Odd Squad Investigation agent belt into a utility belt that holds her Anagram-inator on her belt buckle in place of the Odd Squad seal, her keyboard that she uses to control her Anagram-inator, and a stun gun, among other things.

    Films — Animation 
  • In Toy Story 2, Buzz tries to take one from a newer Buzz Lightyear toy, whose box says "New Utility Belt!"

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Star Wars examples:
    • In A New Hope, Luke swipes a utility belt from a Stormtrooper, and later uses a grapple and line to swing himself and Leia to safety.
    • In some of the later EU books, Luke still carries a grappling hook and rope around, despite being the most powerful Jedi out there.
    • Visual guides detail how Jedi carry specialized equipment and tools in their belts, including small food capsules, holo-proyectors, breathing apparatus, comlinks, and of course their lightsabers.
    • Later on, R2D2 turns into a walking, mostly not talking, self-aware utility belt.
    • Clonetroopers and Imperial infantry of all kinds (Army troopers, Navy troopers, and Stormtroopers) wear them, carrying various equipment such as grappling hook attachments for their guns (seen with the one swapped by Luke), gas and power packs for their blasters, and explosives. Rebel and Resistance troopers prefer instead utility vests or jackets with multiple pockets.
  • Short Circuit: The combat robot Johnny Five has a waist-mounted rotating multitool containing, among other things, wire cutters, lockpick, and a soldering iron. In the second movie, he replaces his shoulder-mounted laser with a utility pack with a magnetic grappling hook, hang-glider, camera, and metal cutter.
  • Used for a Visual Pun in Battle Beyond the Stars, where Space Trucker 'Cowboy' has a belt that dispenses a belt — specifically Scotch, soda, and ice.
  • In Super Mario Bros. (1993), Mario and Luigi wear tool belts as plumbers. Special mention goes to Mario, who is very attached to his belt and treats it like his best friend.
  • In X-Men: Days of Future Past, Quicksilver wears a second belt with two walkmans and pouches with batteries and extra cassette tapes. Useful to listen to music during bullet time.

  • Appointment with F.E.A.R. is a superhero-themed gamebook that allows you to choose between four default superpowers. One of them, Enhanced Techno-skills, grants you an Accessory Belt filled with over a dozen different gadgets to use against criminals.

  • Captain Underpants has a "waistband utility belt."
  • Doc Savage has a utility vest. May very well be the Trope Codifier, if not the Ur-Example.
  • Septimus Heap: Both Septimus Heap and Marcia Overstrand have such belts that include things such as lenses.
  • Discworld:
    • Rincewind's Luggage follows him around, devours his enemies, and opens (if it likes you) with whatever item is needed found on top (smelling faintly of lavender in the case of clothes).
    • The trainee Assassin in Pyramids, who, for his final proficiency test, loads himself with so much equipment for every conceivable outcome that he takes a step forwards and falls over. He discards most of it and takes just a few carefully selected items he can access easily.
  • Arthur Langtry carries a couple of these cross-ways over his chest, containing magical equipment in Changes.
  • In Factory of the Gods, Inventory belts function as a combination video game inventory, utility belt, and Bag of Holding.
  • Leo, the son of Hephaestus introduced in The Heroes of Olympus in the Percy Jackson series, acquires a magic toolbelt that can produce any tool reasonably found in a workshop that would fit in there, which doubles as a Bag of Holding. Also breath mints.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Batman: Batgirl, Batman & Robin from the Sixties TV show, the show that inspired research into real life "Bat-Shark-Repellent-Spray", will always win with the "dehydrated Bat costume", a pill taken from the utility belt that, when soaked, produce a new costume complete with a new utility belt.
  • Paladin has one in Have Gun – Will Travel. Not the superhero style, but his belt carries bullets, and he keeps a derringer behind the belt buckle.
  • The Kamen Rider franchise famously uses belts that act as Transformation Trinkets. Some of them also have compartments to hold other gear.
  • Super Sentai and Power Rangers don't use transformation belts all that much - that's Kamen Rider's shtick - but in recent years the buckle has been used to store whatever the collectible little doodad of the year is (discs in Shinkenger/Samurai, cards in Goseiger/Megaforce, keys in Gokaiger, batteries in Kyoryuger...). Dekaranger/SPD also kept handcuffs in the buckle and cop badges in a compartment in back.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Heward's Handy Haversack, in Dungeons & Dragons, would normally be just a Bag of Holding. However, whatever you want at the moment is exactly on top, and it consists of multiple pouches as well as the main bag. This means it tends to get used as a utility belt instead of a looting sack, and pre-loaded with all those things that might be useful, but are just too bulky or heavy to carry around, such as an iron bar, portable ram, etc.
    • A spell component pouch is said to have an effectively endless supply of all the material components a wizard needs to cast spells, at least for those that don't have a significant cost. (In gameplay terms, this means not getting bogged down with incredibly trivial accounting.) That alone makes it a sort of utility belt for the wizard, but given the large number of spells available, and the diversity of components that they require, some players tend to find more creative interpretations of this rule.
  • This is an actual card for Batman expy the Wraith in Sentinels of the Multiverse. It's one of her most useful cards, letting her use two powers per turn (which, given the sheer number of cards with powers in her deck, makes her a lot more flexible). The Flavor Text has Unity boggle at her keeping a fish in her utility belt, only for the Wraith to note that she needed it, didn't she?

  • Whenever there's a Batman film or animated series, you can be sure that there will be a utility belt to go along with it. Ideal began the trend with the first such belt (now a major collector's item), and companies such as Toy Biz and Mattel have continued the tradition.

    Video Games 
  • In Resident Evil 2, you can take a police utility belt from the RCPD locker which gives 2 extra inventory slots.
  • In the Diablo series, at least after the first game, belts are used to carry potions and sometimes other consumables. Typically, the higher the armor of the belt, the more it carries, though some exceptions do apply.
  • Link starts wearing one across his chest in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.
  • 7.62 High Caliber lets you purchase various utility belts for holding small items, especially ammunition (either magazines or boxes of loose ammo). Some of them also have a holster for fitting a handgun, and the simplest belt available is nothing but a holster and a single magazine pouch; all of them can also accept one or two separate pouches that differ in the size of the Grid Inventory slots added.
  • The semi-official V1.13 update for Jagged Alliance 2 added a bewildering array of load-bearing vests, leg holsters and backpacks for your mercenaries to carry their gear around in.
  • Persona 5: One of your party members, the Phantom Thief Morgana, has a leather belt with two large pouches on the hips that he uses to store various thievery tools, like smoke bombs and lockpicks.
  • In Roots of Pacha, you have a tool belt that can hold up to eight different items, with stacks of 255 each and identical items of different qualities taking up separate slots. You can buy two more belts from Jizu to expand the number of item slots to 24 (8 slots each).
  • In Runescape player characters have a tool belt that can hold various tools that are needed for different skills. The items include things like a pickaxe and hatchet, a grappling hook crossbow, various types of fishing equipment, molds for crafting jewellery, the special items needed to finish off some monsters, a set of farming tools, a key ring and many other miscellaneous items. A fully equipped tool belt has (at time of writing) 75 different items on it.
  • XCOM: Enemy Unknown's Enemy Within expansion adds a Foundry project called "Tactical Rigging", that allows all soldiers to carry two utility items – an ability that, in the core game, only Major-rank Supports had thanks to the "Deep Pockets" skill. The picture for the project is of a modern military harness.

    Web Comics 
  • Girl Genius: While Violetta often keeps her many gadgets, antidotes and poisons hidden discreetly during her first appearance she is openly wearing a corset that is covered in rows of little pouches.
  • Grrl Power: The Mighty Halo decides that having a utility belt like Batman would be both cool and useful. After some negotiation, she also gets its contents narrowed down enough to carry in the field, and in fact it proves helpful more than once.
  • The first strip of Rooster Teeth Comics has Gus wearing one around the office for all his mobile devices. When Jason sarcastically asked where he kept the grappling hook, Gus produced one made of CAT-5 cable.
  • In El Goonish Shive, a guest comic features the main cast as superheros with Tedd wearing a belt with at least two pouches.

    Web Original 
  • Justice Squad: The Batman Expy, Nightflyer, wears one.
  • New York Magician has Wibert's bandolier. Interestingly enough, it only has a few, precisely defined, very useful items in it. Strangely, Michel can apparently get away with openly wearing a bandolier in a major city in the 21st centur-oh, right, it's New York.
  • Whateley Universe: These are immensely popular among heroes and villains alike, and among Whateley Academy students aspiring to be one or the other.
    • One of the Devisor students, Mobius, produces and sells utility belts that have pockets which work like Bags Of Holding. As soon as Phase (Ayla Goodkind) sees them on sale at the Whateley Weapons Fair, he paid a small fortune for one, shelling out several times the asking price while pointing out how much the uber-Utility Belt was really worth; he immediately offered to help market the device for a small percentage of the huge amounts of profit he would be making for Mobius. Phase later bought several more for his teammates.
    • Several other characters have various alternatives. They also tend to be Bags Of Holding of some description, though more mundane utility belts are common even for those who lack such.
    • For instance, Hank/Lancer has a 0-range Telekinesis power that usually just makes him a Flying Brick, but he carries two sword shapes made of paper, that can roll up to fit in a normal pocket. When he applies his telekinetic forcefield to them, they work like regular swords but much sharper and much tougher.
  • The old Trope-tan was often drawn wearing one.
  • In Worm, Skitter's costume includes an armor panel with an open space inside it for storing her smaller pieces of equipment.

    Web Videos 

    Western Animation 
  • In Dynomutt, Dog Wonder, his master the Blue Falcon had a variety of tools in his utility belt.
  • Mookie from Atomic Puppet wears a utility belt. He usually uses its rockets to fly, but it contains a variety of other gadgets (although it doesn't always work as he wants to).
  • In the VeggieTales spinoff The Animated Adventures of Larry-Boy, the title character had a utility belt.
  • In The Simpsons episode "The Homer They Fall", Bart obtains a "Tactical Pants Retaining System" which contains a compass, matches, whistle, saw, panic button, squirrel snare, radon/lie detector, sphygmomanometer and cute turn signals. To Bart's detriment, the "Panic" button only consists of a recording which simply repeats the word "help" and shoots off a rocket with "Call Police".
  • In Team Umizoomi Geo has a shape belt that only carries you know what, but with his powers, he can still make whatever a utility belt carries with the shapes he has.

    Real Life 
  • In general, everyday carry (EDC) enthusiasts are about this, although not necessarily in belt form.
  • Swiss Army Knives / Gerbers / Leathermans fit this trope, from the nicely practical to the completely ludicrous.
  • The chatelaine was a sort of utility belt/keychain for the Proper Lady of the house.
  • Somewhat disappearing due to the integration of multiple devices into cell phones, but geeks of yore used to carry a wide variety of electronics and tools on their belts, and in geek parlance, they were often referred to as "Bat-Belts."
  • Many people in Real Life find a need for having a variety of tools or equipment readily accessible, though usually going by a variety of names. What handyman would be complete without his handy tool belt? Cops wouldn't have enough pockets to keep their badge, holster, handcuffs, etc. if they didn't have a belt to hang it all off of (though some departments are changing to utility vests to distribute the weight to avoid long-term injury).
    • American soldiers call the heavy nylon belts they wear in the field "Web Belts", and many accessories (including canteens, flashlights, and a wide variety of pouches) are specially designed to attach to it. The belt can be attached to a shoulder harness to help support the weight, or it can be replaced with a utility vest. Nowadays, most soldiers just carry their gear in pouches attached to their Bulletproof Vest.
      • Many militaries have a long tradition of utility belts, going back to the Sam Browne belt of the Victorian era, which was a leather or canvas belt with clips for pouches or other accessories, held up by a set of suspenders or a Badass Bandolier. Most armies maintained these belts (or similar ones) as the standard for load-carrying equipment through World War II, and a similar setup is still used today when full webbing vests or webbing-compatible body armor would be impractical.
  • Photographer's vests.
  • Trenchcoats were originally developed with this principle in mind. The deep pockets allowed soldiers to carry extra ammo and maps and other objects, and the detachable belt allowed them to strap grenades and things to it.
  • In Russia, Anatoly Vasserman achieved memetic status for, in particular, the amount of pockets on his vest. See for yourself: [1]