Created By: otjl on May 9, 2012

I Say Again

Characters using radio communication will often say 'Repeat' instead of the correct phrase 'I say again'.

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This trope is found all over the place in just about any film featuring a discussion taking place over radios or walkie-talkies, especially war films. One character will say a phrase (usually one important to the plot), then say the word 'repeat' and then say the phrase again. In real life, the word 'repeat' is an artillery command signalling any listening artillery operators to fire again on the last targeted position. As such the word 'repeat' is almost NEVER used by real radio operators, especially those who have received military training, and anybody who does use it swiftly finds themselves in seriously hot water. The correct phrase is 'I say again'.
Community Feedback Replies: 6
  • May 9, 2012
    Averted in Apollo 13, probably due to the real life basis...there's at least one clear use of "say again" by Mission Control.
    Capcom: This is Houston, say again please?
  • May 9, 2012
    perhaps we should make a "useful notes: radio jargon" page?
  • May 9, 2012
    not a trope
  • May 10, 2012
    ^^ Yeah, that would be a useful page.
  • May 10, 2012
    Artistic License Military mentions incorrect radio protocol but not this specific misuse.
  • May 10, 2012
    Isn't this covered under Beam Me Up Scotty?