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When you have a superhero (or villain) with colossal super-strength, it's often customary to show just how mighty they are by having them rip chunks out of the scenery and use them as weapons. One of the more ludicrous instances of this is when they grab onto a chunk of the ground, then whip it like they're yanking a rug, sending a neat little shockwave directly at their opponent, the earth literally rippling as if made of some kind of flimsy cloth.
While visually stunning, this is impractical. Even if it's secured by rebars or other metal, rock just doesn't have the flexibility needed to flex in such a manner, and it's usually solid rock or concrete these brutes latch onto; ever try to grab a handful of dirt and not have it break up in your hands? Unless it's permafrosted or solidified into some kind of clay, it's impossible, but these bruisers don't have that problem. Then again, they're mighty enough to ignore the laws of physics, anyway.
- This is one of the Hulk's special moves in any Capcom fighting game he's in.
- Both Superman and Darkseid try this trick against one another: the former in Superman: The Animated Series, the latter in Justice League Unlimited.
- In the first appearance of Marvel Comics's most famous Kaiju, the Chinese dragon Fin Fang Foom, Fin attacks a bunch of Chinese soldiers by grabbing up a chunk of the Great Wall of China and snapping it like a whip. This makes no sense but is totally awesome.
- In Brain Dead 13, protagonist Lance uses this on Fritz in the penultimate confrontation. He sees Fritz at the top of a huge staircase and gives the rug at the bottom a mighty pull. The rug shockwave travels up the entirety of the stairs as Lance and Fritz watch (with smugness and curiosity, respectively) until it hits Fritz, who then falls down the entirety of the stairs. As the Obscure Game Theater says, the only way Lance would have tried that would be if he knew he was in a cartoon, and fighting a cartoon.
- Many video games feature this effect when a character will slam his weapon or fist into the ground sending out visible shock waves in form of rippling ground that damages enemies.