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Old 06-22-2016, 10:19 AM
Martian Bigfoot Martian Bigfoot is offline
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Badasses eating apples

Someone pointed this out in a YouTube video, and now I'm suddenly noticing it everywhere: Leonidas. Kirk. Jack Sparrow. Whenever you want a character to look especially badass, have them casually chomp on an apple.

The most recent sighting was just today, as I was watching the movie The Stanford Prison Experiment. Sure enough, there it was: The apple of badass. And that's when I thought: OK, this is worth starting a thread about.

So: Is this a trope, or at least a mini-trope? If so, does it have a TV Tropes page? (I couldn't find one.) Have you guys noticed any badass-related apple-chomping that you want to mention? Why does apples in particular make you look badass, rather than say, carrots? Or is this all my confirmation bias talking, and I'm simply missing all the casual banana- and peanut-eating?
  #2  
Old 06-22-2016, 10:24 AM
Guest-starring: Id! Guest-starring: Id! is offline
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In "Frenzy", uber-creep Rusk takes a bite out of one as a prelude to one of the nastiest film scenes I've ever seen.
  #3  
Old 06-22-2016, 10:26 AM
Sattua Sattua is offline
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I don't know about TV tropes, but it is a sort of joke among fantasy writers, on par with having red hair or being the last of one's kind. See here: How to Tell if You Are In a High Fantasy Novel. It's a little below the picture, on my display.
  #4  
Old 06-22-2016, 10:56 AM
Tom Tildrum Tom Tildrum is offline
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It's the crunch; it suggests that this is a guy who's going to knock some heads and break some bones. The carrot, aside from being phallic, is unavoidably comedic among viewers old enough to have seen a lot of Bugs Bunny.
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Old 06-22-2016, 10:59 AM
GunnarFranz GunnarFranz is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Tildrum View Post
It's the crunch; it suggests that this is a guy who's going to knock some heads and break some bones. The carrot, aside from being phallic, is unavoidably comedic among viewers old enough to have seen a lot of Bugs Bunny.
You're on to something, I can't think of a food the average person eats more violently...
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Old 06-22-2016, 11:03 AM
Stranger On A Train Stranger On A Train is offline
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David Mamet's underrated Spartan:
Delta Cadre Selection Member: You might want to eat something.

MGySgt Robert 'Bobby' Scott: [pulls out an apple, slices off a piece with his autoknife]

Delta: Real deal is, the boat went down...girl and the professor...washed up naked. Coked out. Coast Guard dresses them up. [beat] Nice knife.

Scott: Yeah, got it off an East German fella. [hands knife to Delta]

Delta: He give it to you for a gift?

Scott: No, as I recall, he was...rather reluctant to part with it.

Delta: [closing knife and sliding it back over to Scott] Yeah, I always knew you Marines were a weepy bunch of motherfuckers.

Scott: I got something in my eye.
Stranger
  #7  
Old 06-22-2016, 11:22 AM
Tim R. Mortiss Tim R. Mortiss is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Tildrum View Post
It's the crunch; it suggests that this is a guy who's going to knock some heads and break some bones. The carrot, aside from being phallic, is unavoidably comedic among viewers old enough to have seen a lot of Bugs Bunny.
In the movie Shoot 'Em Up, uber-badass Clive Owen is constantly munching on carrots, and even uses them as weapons (for example, stabbing someone in the eye) from time to time. I never thought of it before, but it is probably a sly parody of the apple trope.
  #8  
Old 06-22-2016, 11:24 AM
SpoilerVirgin SpoilerVirgin is offline
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The TV Tropes page is The Snack Is More Interesting. Although it focuses on being more interested in the food than the action, it includes examples of the type you describe, where eating an apple makes someone look tough.

The tagline for the page is ""The director said 'Here, eat an apple. It'll make you look like even more of an asshole.'"
  #9  
Old 06-22-2016, 11:31 AM
JeffB JeffB is offline
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In Game of Thrones, there is a scene with Ramsay Bolton and an apple.
  #10  
Old 06-22-2016, 11:52 AM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Tildrum View Post
It's the crunch; it suggests that this is a guy who's going to knock some heads and break some bones.
I think the implication is more like what SpoilerVirgin describes. It's supposed to highlight the character's superiority over the people around him. While everyone else is losing control, he's having a snack and only giving part of his attention to the crisis. It's a way of signalling "My abilities are so much better than yours that I'm not even getting excited by the situation that is putting you into a panic."
  #11  
Old 06-22-2016, 12:10 PM
Martian Bigfoot Martian Bigfoot is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpoilerVirgin View Post
The TV Tropes page is The Snack Is More Interesting. Although it focuses on being more interested in the food than the action, it includes examples of the type you describe, where eating an apple makes someone look tough.

The tagline for the page is ""The director said 'Here, eat an apple. It'll make you look like even more of an asshole.'"
Ah! Thanks.
  #12  
Old 06-22-2016, 12:14 PM
enalzi enalzi is offline
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George Costanza is the ultimate badass:

Quote:
Jerry: So you called.

George: Right. And, and to cover my nervousness I started eating an apple,
because I think if they hear you chewing on the other end of the phone, it
makes you sound casual.

Jerry: Yeah, like a farm boy.
  #13  
Old 06-22-2016, 12:15 PM
divemaster divemaster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
...It's a way of signalling "My abilities are so much better than yours that I'm not even getting excited by the situation that is putting you into a panic."
"Well, I got her number. How do you like them apples?"
  #14  
Old 06-22-2016, 12:52 PM
WordMan WordMan is offline
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::crunch!!::

Sorry - you were saying something?

  #15  
Old 06-22-2016, 12:56 PM
ftg ftg is offline
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My fave sub-sub-trope is the heavy using a knife to slice up the apple. It inevitably ends up crossing with the alt-trope of Chekov's Knife.
  #16  
Old 06-22-2016, 01:02 PM
Bayard Bayard is offline
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ISTR seeing a movie or two where the badass ate walnuts. He'd casually crack two or three of them one-handed, so you got a nice crunch as well as a display of strength. I never watched The Sopranos -- was that how Paulie Walnuts got his nickname?
  #17  
Old 06-22-2016, 01:10 PM
Intergalactic Gladiator Intergalactic Gladiator is offline
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What about pistachios?
  #18  
Old 06-22-2016, 01:11 PM
Colibri Colibri is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bayard View Post
I never watched The Sopranos -- was that how Paulie Walnuts got his nickname?
Wiki says he got it from hijacking a truck that he thought contained tv sets but actually held a shipment of walnuts.

I always had assumed that it was because his last name, Gualtieri, sounded vaguely like "walnuts."
  #19  
Old 06-22-2016, 01:14 PM
DrCube DrCube is offline
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Apples always seemed like a way to avoid using cigarettes for the 100th time. Just another prop for the actor to look cool with. It also takes more acting ability than a cigarette does to get right. If you do it wrong, you just look like a slobbering pig.
  #20  
Old 06-22-2016, 01:36 PM
muldoonthief muldoonthief is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bayard View Post
ISTR seeing a movie or two where the badass ate walnuts. He'd casually crack two or three of them one-handed, so you got a nice crunch as well as a display of strength. I never watched The Sopranos -- was that how Paulie Walnuts got his nickname?
Irene Adler does this in the "Sherlock Holmes" movie with Robert Downey Jr. It's even more badass since she's a petite female.

Of course, cracking two or three in one hand is much easier than cracking one, since you're squeezing two hard surfaces against each either.
  #21  
Old 06-22-2016, 01:45 PM
Skald the Rhymer Skald the Rhymer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martian Bigfoot View Post
Someone pointed this out in a YouTube video, and now I'm suddenly noticing it everywhere: Leonidas. Kirk. Jack Sparrow. Whenever you want a character to look especially badass, have them casually chomp on an apple.


That is a not a picture of James T. Kirk. That is a picture of something filthy elf-worshipping Smurf-fucking Pompeiian doing Trek cosplay.

THIS is Mr. Spock's boyfriend.

Last edited by Skald the Rhymer; 06-22-2016 at 01:48 PM.
  #22  
Old 06-22-2016, 04:30 PM
buddha_david buddha_david is offline
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In Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, Tina Turner takes a big loud bite of an apple as a signal for her goons to attack Max.
  #23  
Old 06-22-2016, 04:55 PM
ftg ftg is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bayard View Post
ISTR seeing a movie or two where the badass ate walnuts. He'd casually crack two or three of them one-handed, so you got a nice crunch as well as a display of strength.
Just waaay too common to ID a specific movie. E.g., Brando does this in The Freshman. But that's a comic takeoff on Godfather type movies.
  #24  
Old 06-22-2016, 04:58 PM
Rick Kitchen Rick Kitchen is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ftg View Post
My fave sub-sub-trope is the heavy using a knife to slice up the apple. It inevitably ends up crossing with the alt-trope of Chekov's Knife.
And eating the apple off of the knife blade.
  #25  
Old 06-22-2016, 05:02 PM
Chimera Chimera is offline
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Carlito Colon, the professional wrestler and heel (bad guy).
  #26  
Old 06-22-2016, 05:09 PM
Damfino Damfino is offline
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In one of the BBC Sherlock episodes Moriarty confronts Sherlock in his flat, taking a big bite out of an apple to represent the O in the message IOU
  #27  
Old 06-22-2016, 05:10 PM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
I think the implication is more like what SpoilerVirgin describes. It's supposed to highlight the character's superiority over the people around him. While everyone else is losing control, he's having a snack and only giving part of his attention to the crisis. It's a way of signalling "My abilities are so much better than yours that I'm not even getting excited by the situation that is putting you into a panic."
One they didn't mention on the Tropes page: Patrick Stewart's portrayal of Macbeth. Telling your men about murders they need to commit? That's cold -- but an actor could play that in a reluctant it-has-to-be-done kind of way. Or at least just determined, looking serious and maybe a little thoughtful.

Patrick Stewart does it while making a sandwich.
  #28  
Old 06-22-2016, 05:11 PM
JSexton JSexton is offline
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All I can picture is Burn Notice's Michael Westen, constantly eating his yogurt while threatening this week's baddie.
  #29  
Old 06-22-2016, 05:45 PM
Chronos Chronos is offline
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Don't forget Mal and Zoe eating apples with their knives. Because ribcages.
  #30  
Old 06-22-2016, 05:56 PM
Walken After Midnight Walken After Midnight is offline
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This Cracked(dot)com photoplasty - "Cocky pricks love them apples!" - from last year also pointed this out.
  #31  
Old 06-22-2016, 07:11 PM
Guest-starring: Id! Guest-starring: Id! is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick Kitchen View Post
And eating the apple off of the knife blade.
That.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WordMan View Post
::crunch!!::

Sorry - you were saying something?

Let's just hope your mouth wasn't full when saying that! *wagging curmudgeonly finger*

What about Adam, The Original Bad-Ass.

I'm about 78% sure Bo Hopkins had a leisurely slice or two via knife point, but fogging out on anything more detailed.
  #32  
Old 06-22-2016, 10:18 PM
Rilchiam Rilchiam is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
I think the implication is more like what SpoilerVirgin describes. It's supposed to highlight the character's superiority over the people around him. While everyone else is losing control, he's having a snack and only giving part of his attention to the crisis. It's a way of signalling "My abilities are so much better than yours that I'm not even getting excited by the situation that is putting you into a panic."
Evil women characters send the same message by filing their nails. With an aggressive sawing back and forth motion, of course. There's a fine line between evil nail care and bimbo nail care.
  #33  
Old 06-22-2016, 10:41 PM
Doug K. Doug K. is offline
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Eating apples certainly made Larry Mondello look tough.
  #34  
Old 06-22-2016, 10:47 PM
Sattua Sattua is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ftg View Post
My fave sub-sub-trope is the heavy using a knife to slice up the apple. It inevitably ends up crossing with the alt-trope of Chekov's Knife.
Or not, as in the end of Kill Bill, when Bill uses a really big knife to spread mayonnaise on his daughter's sandwich.
  #35  
Old 06-22-2016, 11:19 PM
Battle Pope Battle Pope is offline
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Onions don't work so well. (Buzzfeed link)
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