Popeye is training for a high stakes boxing match against Bluto. Bluto does, of course, everything he can to hamper him and cheat, even before the match begins.
The short is a semi-remake of another Popeye boxing episode, from the Fleischer Studios era this time, 1934's Let's You and Him Fight.
Out to Punch contains examples of the following tropes:
- Boxing Episode: Popeye, who's normally a sailor, challenges Bluto (also normally a sailor) to a boxing match.
- Cement Shoes: Not an underwater example. On the way to the hall where the match will happen, Bluto puts quick-setting cement. Popeye's feet get stuck in it, and he ends up with having to walk up to the hall with cement over his shoes, which tires him. It also hampers him big time during the match, until he can shed the cement and get up once he's empowered with spinach.
- Cheaters Never Prosper: Bluto ends up losing the match, as he always does whenever he cheats in a competition against Popeye.
- Curb-Stomp Battle: Popeye throws exactly one punch during the fight (after being empowered by spinach) and wins.
- Heroic Second Wind: When Popeye is down and about to lose the fight as he can't get up, Olive Oyl feeds him his spinach. He gets up just in time, and a Curb-Stomp Battle ensues.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: The two times Bluto tries hampering Popeye during his training, it ends up biting him in the ass.
- Impact Silhouette:
- Popeye leaves a hole shaped like himself when he falls through the boxing ring's floor after getting a sucker punch from Bluto, due to his Cement Shoes.
- A variation occurs with Popeye's head's shape on a boxing ring post Bluto tries hitting him with. Since Popeye is empowered by spinach, he suffers no damage, much to Bluto's surprise.
- Instant Emergency Response: A variant with Bluto being sent flying by one single punch from Popeye and crashing into a hospital. After crashing through all of the hospital's floors down to the bottom, Bluto immediately gets out of it in a wheelchair, with bandages and plaster casts.
- Later-Installment Weirdness: For once, it's Olive who feeds Popeye with spinach to save the day.
- Megaton Punch: Twofold:
- Bluto tries sabotaging Popeye's training by filling his punching bag with metal junk. Popeye's regular punches end up of course inefficient against the now-very heavy bag, so he uses his "'twister punch", which is powerful enough (without spinach power) to send the bag flying... and it lands straight on Bluto.
- After being empowered by spinach, Popeye punches Bluto only once. That's enough to send Bluto flying through the roof, over the city and crash straight into the hospital.
- No-Sell: Outside of the Punch! Punch! Punch! Uh Oh... below, Bluto tries hitting Popeye with one of the boxing ring's posts... and the post ends up with Popeye's head's shape carved in it, since the spinach have rendered Popeye as tough as a tank. Oh, Crap! and a Megaton Punch ensue.
- Punch! Punch! Punch! Uh Oh...: Once he gets up after eating spinach, Popeye advances Implacable Man-style towards Bluto. Bluto repeatedly punches his face to no effect, even damaging his boxing gloves in the process.