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You look in the mirror and see three heads looking back at yourselves with five eyes and seven arms and think to yourselves, how do we septo-wield? Or better yet, how can we write our book, cradle our baby, and make paper airplanes at the same time? Practice, that's how.

Please note this has surprisingly little to do with Excuse Me While I Multitask, if you're thinking about wielding weapons with many arms you still need some form of Multiarmed Multitasking; it just belongs in Multi-Armed and Dangerous. If your extra limbs are for walking, they belong in Spider Limbs.


Examples:


Anime and Manga

  • Ceres from Oban Star Racers an Animesque racing series co-produced by French and Japanese animation studios.
  • In Shinryaku! Ika Musume, Ika appears to specialism in this with her tentacle hair.
  • Spirited Away - Kamaji operates the bathhouse boiler room. He has six spidery arms, which he uses to multitask: reaching into the hundreds of herb cabinets, pouring boiling water, grinding potions with his yagen (related to a mortar a pestle, but using a wheel in a narrow trough) and responding to wooden tags on ropes signalling requests from the bathhouse above.
  • Franken Fran oftentimes attaches her head to a special multi-armed body in order to perform particularly complex surgery.

Comic Books

  • In Ironwood, first mate Tif makes full use of all four of her hands while having a threesome with a jinn and a crewmate.

Fan Fiction

  • There was once a Mortal Kombat fan fic where Sheeva was driving somewhere with the heroes, and had two arms on the wheel, one on the transmission, and one out the window (and no, it doesn't mention how she learned to drive).

Film

Literature

  • In The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Arthur's extreme Unknown Rival Agrajag has built a Temple of Hate devoted to him, the centrepiece of which is a giant statue of Arthur with multiple arms. He discovers that each one of them depicts one of the many, many times he has (unwittingly) caused the death of one of Agrajag's former incarnations.
    • Subverted with Zaphod Beeblebrox, who gave himself a third arm and then does nothing at all with it.

Live Action TV

  • Pilot from Farscape. One episode notes that having the mental capacity for multitasking is very uncommon, and more important than the multiple arms themselves.
  • The short-lived 1970s sci-fi sitcom Quark featured Interface, a four-armed alien woman who worked as an intergalactic switchboard operator connecting calls between ships.
  • Kamen Rider Fourze has the Hand Switch, which equips Fourze with an extra arm (attached to his leg) that's outright stated to be for this. While he works on solving a math problem, it disassembles a bicycle. Thus far its not been shown to have any type of combat potential.

Mythology

  • Hindu Mythology several gods (Shiva for one) are usually depicted with multiple arms each holding symbolic instruments like scales and scythes and swords.
  • Different Buddhas are sometimes depicted with many arms.

Tabletop RPG

  • GURPS has the Multiple Arms advantage available for player characters, but you also need to buy special coordination to use them fully- otherwise they are only good for holding things, not performing more than one task at a time.
    • In Werewolf: The Apocalypse, the Ananasi werespiders can take this ability, though it's a fairly high-level spell, since it requires a fair deal of mental skill.
  • Techpriests in the Warhammer 40000 universe can do that.

Web Comics

  • Played with and subverted - and then played straight for good measure - in Schlock Mercenary. One of the mercs, a guy named Andy, belongs to a race of four-armed aliens. During his initial interview, he bragged about quad-wielding handguns, but Thurl just pointed out that he still only had two eyes, so no matter how many weapons he's got, he'll only hit one target. There has been incidents where he HAS used it, though - including wielding a two-handed assault-rifle and two handguns at the same time - but it's been purely for intimidation-value. Or sometimes just for fun.
    • Schlock himself has demonstrated on multiple occasions that he can not only form extra hands when needed, but also use them quite effectively. The fact that he can have multiple eyes (if he can get hold of them) means he could aim at multiple targets.
  • Spinnerette uses her 6 arms to knit - all at once.
    • While using silk she produced herself.
  • At Arms Length When not fighting evil, Ally, Reece and Sheila are not above using all four arms to cut corners in mundane activities.
    • The entire Enchanter race, which is naturally four-armed, is built around this trope.

Western Animation

  • Elzar in Futurama. The DVD commentary mentions that the animators went out of their way to have each arm work independently rather than have each arm on either side move in the same way.
  • SpongeBob does this taking care of the baby scallop, probably other times as well.
  • Squiddly Diddly did this sometimes. (In fact his pic on The Other Wiki shows him playing three musical instruments at once.)
  • In The Simpsons, a cutaway shot of the Earth shows a vaguely Hindu-esque being frantically pressing buttons in the core, apparently to keep the world working. He pauses briefly to wipe his forehead with one of his hands and sigh with exhaustion.
  • One episode of Dragon Tales featured a dragon with six limbs running a concession stand.
  • In an episode of Arthur, the titular character has to clean a room, and his dad tells him "Many hands make light work." He imagines it literally. Buster does the same later in the episode.
  • Spydra in Gadget Boy and Heather does this at times in a few episodes, making full use of her six arms simultaneously.
  • In the cancelled series Stripperella, a supervillainess with six arms pilots a blimp all on her own, with two hands on the wheel and the remaining four on switches and buttons. She also utilised six pistols at one go in the earlier portion of the episode, allowing her to use them as a makeshift machine gun.
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