Created By: Lenoxus on September 12, 2010 Last Edited By: Lenoxus on September 12, 2010
Troped

I've Heard Of That! What Is It?

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A character (often The Ditz) encounters a word or phrase, and makes some comment expressing what s/he thinks about the thing the word refers to — just before revealing that actually, s/he doesn't know the word at all. ("Lorem Ipsum is wonderful! By the way, what's Lorem Ipsum?")

If the character doesn't outright imply that s/he knows what the thing is, but is willing to venture a guess, that guess will likely be Is It Something You Eat?? (As opposed to saying, "I think gazebos are delicious! What exactly are they again?")

The thing in question just might turn out to be a Henway.

Not to be confused with Mala Proper, which is when the character misuses words without knowing that they don't know what the words mean.

Examples:

Anime
  • Yotsuba&!: Upon being told that they got tickets to Water World, Yotsuba says, "Ohhh! That place!?" Jumbo asks if she knows it: "… Not really."

Live Action
  • In Enchanted:
    Giselle: I want to go on a date.
    Edward: (excited voice) A date! … What's a date?

Live-Action TV
  • On [[How I Met Your Mother]], Ted once gushed about how his current [[Girl Of The Week]] was taking classes in Krav Maga. When she leaves, he admits that he doesn't really know what it is, but presumes it's some kind of yoga. He later finds out when she beats him up for breaking up with her.

Newspaper Comics
  • In a Calvin and Hobbes strip, Calvin is told that dinner will be tortellini, and complains at length about how disgusting it is. In the last panel, he's looking up the word in the dictionary.

Western Animation
  • Futurama, "Love's Labours Lost In Space":
    Leela: That's Zapp Brannigan's ship.
    Fry: The Zapp Brannigan?
    Leela: Uh-huh.
    Fry: Who's the Zapp Brannigan?
  • SpongeBob SquarePants, "Opposite Day":
    Patrick: Opposite Day? Hey, I've heard of that!
    SpongeBob: Really?
    Patrick: No, what is it?
    • In "Tea at the Treedome", Sandy mentions that she needs to breathe air, and SpongeBob replies "Me too!" Then he goes to Patrick and asks him what air is. Naturally, Patrick gives him the wrong information and Hilarity Asphixiation Ensues.
  • The Penguins of Madagascar, "Otter Gone Wild":
    Private: We're going for yummy snow cones, Marlene. Wanna come?
    Marlene: Snow cones? Oh, snow cones are the best! Real quick: A snow cone is…?
Community Feedback Replies: 8
  • September 11, 2010
    randomsurfer
    Look out, it might be a Henway.
  • September 11, 2010
    Unknown Troper
    • Futurama, "Love's Labours Lost In Space":
      Leela: That's Zapp Brannigan's ship.
      Fry: The Zapp Brannigan?
      Leela: Uh-huh.
      Fry: Who's the Zapp Brannigan?
    • SpongeBob SquarePants, "Opposite Day":
      Patrick: Opposite Day? Hey, I've heard of that!
      SpongeBob: Really?
      Patrick: No, what is it?
      • On "Tea at the Treedome", Sandy mentions that she needs to breathe air, and SpongeBob replies "Me too!" Then he goes to Patrick and asks him what air is. Naturally, Patrick gives him the wrong information and [[strike:Hilarity Asphixiation Ensues]].
    • The Penguins Of Madagascar, "Otter Gone Wild":
      Private: We're going for yummy snow cones, Marlene. Wanna come?
      Marlene: Snow cones? Oh, snow cones are the best! Real quick: a snow cone is?
  • September 11, 2010
    Lenoxus
    Thanks for the examples, Unknown Troper! The Sponge Bob one inspired the more neutral name. I figure that one page can cover situations where the character expresses approval, or disapproval, or simply uses words with the strong implication that s/he knows what the word means.
  • September 11, 2010
    RainyDayNinja
    On How I Met Your Mother, Ted once gushed about how his current Girl Of The Week was taking classes in Krav Maga. When she leaves, he admits that he doesn't really know what it is, but presumes it's some kind of yoga. He later finds out when she beats him up for breaking up with her.
  • September 11, 2010
    AFP
  • September 12, 2010
    Nyperold
    Some characters may also ask if it is a food.

    • Upon being told that they got tickets to Water World, Yotsuba says, "Ohhh! That place!?" Jumbo asks if she knows it: "...... Not really."
  • September 12, 2010
    Lenoxus
    AFP: I don't think that one quite counts; it's a case of Mala Proper (she's vaguely remembering the word "mallard"). The basic distinction is that in this trope the character knows that they don't know the word, but for whatever reason, acts like they do anyway, to the best of their ability, if only for a brief period. The Mala Proper, on the other hand, really thinks that a ballad is a duck.
  • September 12, 2010
    Lenoxus
    Thanks for all the examples, people! I'm going to launch in a bit.
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