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The Cow Boy 1888

Shadows without a cause.

So you're not the Big Bad, and you can't pull off the Slouch of Villainy. But you're also not The Cape; you're a hero, but you want to rebel against something, because rebels are cool. Why not good posture?

Leaning slightly against something, arms folded, and one foot resting against the wall. Often the standard pose of the Badass or the Aloof Ally. Cigarette and/or toothpick optional.

A Sister Trope to Badass Arm-Fold.

Compare Leaning on the Furniture, Captain Morgan Pose, Coy Girlish Flirt Pose.

Examples of Rebel Relaxation include:

Anime and Manga

  • Angel Salvia does this once, while scouting things up in a tree.
  • In Gunnm, Gally has one of those in her flashback of when she was still Yoko.
  • In Dragonball Z, any scene featuring Vegeta where he wasn't fighting, training, monologueing, or boasting had him doing this. He even pulls it off while sitting.
    • Piccolo manages to pull this off every time he arrives on the battlefield in a movie, often while standing on a pole or floating in the air (in a relaxed fashion). Occasionally does so in the series as well.
  • Treecko/Grovyle/Sceptile from Pokémon. Rebellious and Badass.
  • Kakashi of Naruto, when not fighting the current baddy, often adopts this position - even when not actually leaning against anything. He is also a master in the art of sudden appearances, and generally pulls them off with a comfortable slouch.
  • The exact position Syrup was in when the Five Girl Band first sees him in the first episode of GoGo. Complete with strangely elaborated lighting and cherry blossoms petals showering by.
  • Joe Asakura aka Jason; Dirk, Joe Thax of the many dubbed Science Ninja Team Gatchaman franchise.

Comic Books



  • Haplo had a text description of that when he was on the water world, in The Death Gate Cycle.
  • This position is described at length in the book Spud Sweetgrass.
  • Vimes from the Discworld does this, even though he's a duke.

Live Action TV

  • JD Smith of The Dakotas does this everywhere; standing, sitting - he can even do this while perching on a windowsill.
  • Breatt and Jemaine from Flight of the Conchords after styling their hair with gel, and suddenly becoming really cool.
  • Cal Lightman of Lie to Me, especially around the poker table in "Fold Equity."
    • In the first season finale, someone referred to him as "a human question mark" because he slouched so badly. Actor Tim Roth is bowlegged in real life, according to IMDb.
    • This probably also is why Lightman seems to be shorter than most of his staff, despite there not being a wide range of heights among the cast. Note that the rest of the characters all have exceptionally good posture (except for Loker when he's sitting down).
    • The cast apparently calls it the Lightman Lean.

Newspaper Comics

  • Joe Cool.
  • Calvin once did this for a while. Hobbes didn't seem to grasp the concept very well.


  • Many productions of Hamlet and/or Fortinbras feature Prince Hamlet in this pose at some point or another.

Video Games


 Ansaksie: Figures. That Soldier sold me a malfunctioning translator, now I'm babysitting a human with people-poking issues. Might as well keep practicing this cool pose...

  • Zaeed, the first DLC character from Mass Effect 2, seems to spend all his non-mission time leaning against the wall in his room. He's still doing it in the briefing before the final mission.

Western Animation

  • Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends referenced it.
  • Jet of Avatar: The Last Airbender.
    • Toph often does this as well.
  • Parodied hilariously in The Weekenders, when Carver decides to hang out with a pair of "cool kids". When he asks them what they do for fun, they tell him fun is for losers and that they mostly "just lean against stuff". He proceeds to join them in idle Rebel Relaxation, mocking random passersby.

Real Life

  • Those "cowboy silhouette" yard decorations (pictured).
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