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The classic European and American standard of male beauty[1], the hunk is two things: handsome and manly.

His face tends to be squarish and sharp-featured, often with a prominent chin. He has big, well-muscled arms and a large torso with pronounced muscles. He also has fairly thick, muscular legs, though they get less attention. It is often implied that he is as well-endowed between the legs as in the arms. The hunk may or may not have body hair, depending on the time period, and facial hair is negotiable. Guaranteed, however, to adopt Perma Stubble during his choice moments as Estrogen Brigade Bait.

Clothing tends to be simple and timeless. Nowadays, a hunk's casual wardrobe will consist of tight jeans and either a tank top, tight T-shirt, or flannel shirt (if he wears one at all. works oriented at a female audience have him not in increasing numbers). For work and formal events, a smart suit is a given.

The hero of a story, if male, is frequently a hunk, particularly in an action series. If the lead character is a woman, the leading man or the heroine's Love Interest, if not both, tends to be a hunk.

It is rare for a hunk to be an outright villain. However, a nasty hunk is often used to deliver the Moral of the Story. In this case, the (usually young, often teenage) heroine will imagine him to be a perfect Knight in Shining Armour type, but he's actually a Prince Charmless, Jerkass or vain prick, thus proving that one should not judge another based on appearances.

Mr. Fanservice is usually one of these. Contrast Pretty Boy. East Asian pop-culture tends to use Bishonen as the go-to "hot guy standard" instead.

Examples of Hunk include:


  • Calvin Klein hires hunks as underwear models.
  • Abercrombie and Fitch is built on this trope.
  • The Old Spice Guy openly exploits and lampshades this trope.

Anime and Manga


  • Superman is usually drawn this way. Clark Kent varies by the artist.
  • Bruce Wayne aka Batman is also frequently drawn in a hunky manner.
  • Most incarnations of Nightwing.
  • Most male comic book heroes, really. It would probably be quicker to list the aversions of this trope.
  • Bruce Banner averts it, being short and skinny. His alter-ego doesn't fare much better, as he is generally drawn as extremely muscular but troll-faced. However, during the 90s Bruce Banner and the Hulk were merged into a single persona and this new incarnation was drawn with the Hulk's body and Banner's face, creating a (green) hunk.


  • Gaston from Beauty and the Beast is a rare villainous example.
  • Prince Charming in the Shrek movies. Also a villainous hunk.
    • There's also Shrek in his human form.
  • Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's role as the name role of The Scorpion King was parodied in Mad Magazine. Let's just say they named the parody The Scorpion Hunk.
    • The Rock is cast this way in virtually every role.
  • In the film version of Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire, Viktor Krum is portrayed as this despite being unattractive and gangly in the books.
  • Hercules from Disney's 1997 movie of the same name is also very handsome and because of that one of the most popular Disney's characters


  • Carrot Ironfoundersson in Discworld is described as being pretty hunky.

Live-Action TV

Professional Wrestling

Video Games

Web Originals

Western Animation


  1. there was a period in the 18th and 19th centuries when Pretty Boy was the standard, but hunks have been more commonly admired at other times
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