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Like Parrot Exposition
, but the expositor can't even finish the word. Even if it is easy to remember
. Also used when someone says a big word, like Palaeo-whatisit
. Sometimes used out of spite, and sometimes used out of disbelief. Often used in Advertising
. Sister Trope
, where the speaker finds the word so unpronounceable he thinks it must have been a sneeze. A common silly subtrope involves the expositer successfully repeating each part
of a word, but still somehow unable to say the whole thing together:
"He went to Liechtenstein."
- Benda-what? Benda-who?
- A certain E*Trade commercial that a certain actress claims is violating her rights.
- Used in a commercial for Maximum Testosterol, apparently by picking which syllable to 'miss' out of a hat. A character asks incredulously, when first told the name, "Maximum whatstosterol?"
- In Runaways, when Cloak and Dagger make their first appearance, Cloak sucks Alex, Chase, Nico, and Karolina into his cape before Molly rips it off of him. After Gertrude convinces them that they aren't murderers or kidnappers (as their parents, the real criminals, spread around), the following exchange occurs:
Dagger: Oh my God, then your friends are innocent too?
Cloak: And they're t-trapped in the Darkforce Dimension!
Gertrude: The what now?
- When Dan receives his Shikigami in Thawing Permafrost, he can't get the name right. Upon first hearing it, his reaction is "Shiki-whatnow?".
- From Calvin and Hobbes: The Series:
Mom: Calvin, we're going out to the grocery store real quick, and we need you to watch Tug.
Calvin: You need me to what?!
- From A Complete Turnabout:
Edgeworth: You… You got the limited edition Mayoi and Chinami cards from the 'Moonlight Showdown' series!
Phoenix: I got what of whom from what?
- From Sonic Generations: Friendship is Timeless:
Sonic: Who’s Discord? That snake-looking thing up there?
Twilight: That’s right, Sonic. Discord is a draconequus.
Sonic: A what?
- From Double Rainboom:
Twilight: In theory, this potion is supposed to be a talent enhancer.
Rainbow Dash: A talent what?
- From Turnabout Storm:
: My name is Apple Bloom, and I'm a Cutie Mark Crusader! The Judge
: A... cutie mark... what?
- In the live-action How the Grinch Stole Christmas! movie: "Holiday Whobeewhatee?"
- In 9, when told by 1 to "subjugate [9 and 5]", 8 responds with "subje - what?"
- Madagascar also counting as Getting Crap Past the Radar:
King Julien: Welcome to Madagascar!
King Julien: No, not who-ha. As-car.
- Counts as a Brick Joke thanks to the first exchange between Marty and the penguins:
Skipper: We're fleeing this place for Antarctica!
- The Rescuers Down Under:
- Ace Ventura From the sequel:
Princess: That was the dart of the Wachutu shaman!
Ace: The what-nee what-en?
- In The Rocketeer, when Cliff reveals his secret identity to his girlfriend Jenny:
Jenny: (confused) The Rocket-who?
Radar technician: I'm having trouble with the radar, sir.
Dark Helmet: What's wrong with it?
Radar technician: I lost the bleeps, I lost the sweeps, and I lost the creeps.
Dark Helmet: The what?
Colonel Sandurz: The what?
Dark Helmet: And the what?
- This bit in The Court Jester
Fergus, the ostler: "Im Fergus, the ostler!"
Hawkins: Wh-Whogus the whatsler?"
- This bit in Mary Poppins:
Jane: Mary Poppins taught us the most wonderful word!
Mr. Banks: What on earth are you talking about, supercal— super— or whatever the infernal thing is?
Jane: It's something to say when you don't know what to say.
Mr. Banks: Yes, well, I always know what to say.
- Alpha and Omega:
- Monty Python and the Holy Grail:
Arthur: How do you do, good lady? I am Arthur, King of the Britons.
Dennis' Mother: King of the who?
- Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
Anya: Buffy's got some kind of job there helping junior deviants, Spike's insane in the basement, Xander's there doing construction on the new gym-—
Willow: Wait, Spike's what in the what-ment?
Anya: Insane, base.
- When Buffy's friends confront her about her having sex with Spike (the one they saw was actually a robot), she responds, "The who whatting how with huh?"
- Buffy does this a lot. From "Lie To Me":
Ford: [walks up behind Buffy, who has just slain a vamp] What's going on?
Buffy: Um, uh... there was a-a cat. A cat here. And um, uh, then there was a-another cat. And they fought. The cats. And... then they left.
Ford: Oh. I thought you were just slaying a vampire.
Buffy: What? What-ing a what?
- It's not for nothing that this show is the Trope Namer for Buffy Speak.
- Red Dwarf:
- Firefly, "Shindig":
"Any of these gentlemen can lend you use of a sword."
"Use of a swwhat?"
- From the MST3K Episode "Prince of Space."
Observer: Don't touch that, that's a wormhole!
Pearl: A worm-what?
Observer: A wormhole.
Pearl: A what-hole?
Observer: A wormhole. Wormhole!
- In El Chapulín Colorado, the eponymous hero would listen to some complex world, make the entire routine and then ad an astonished expression. As added fun, instead of repeating the whole word, the person just repeat the last sylables that Chapulín missed.
Person: It was it's exoesqueleton
Chapulín: It's exoesquele-what?
- In episode one of Strong Bad's Cool Game for Attractive People, Strong Bad's attempt to find one of the pages for the Snake Boxer 5 manual takes him through a chain of people that leads to Bubs.
Strong Bad: Please tell me you've got my Snake Boxer 5 manual...
Bubs: Snake what now?
Bubs: Oh, Snake Boxer 5! Here ya go.
- Conkers Bad Fur Day:
King Bee: I didn't even get to tell you about the big-breasted babe...
Conker: The— the big what?
- Dead or Alive Dimensions:
Ayane: How could karate stand against the Hajin-mon sect of Mugen Tenshin?
Hitomi: Hajin-in the what now?
- From the opening cutscene of Pac-Man and the Ghostly Adventures:
Sir C: Oh no! That's the Fridigitator!
- In Chapter 2 of Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance, when Raiden infiltrates a Desperado facility, Doktor tells him to find a terminal where he can access the lab's main server.
Doktor: But first, you need to take a DOOMP.
Raiden: I... wait, what?
Doktor: A DOOMP? A digital-optical output mounted proxy. ...
- In Dragon Ball Abridged, anytime Goku calls out that he's using the Kaio-Ken technique, it's invariably followed by the receiving party uttering "Kaio-what?" before he wallops them.
- In the Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series version of Bonds Beyond Time, Yami has this response when Yusei synchro summons a monster. Of course, Yami's doing it on purpose because he's a Jerkass.
Yusei: I synchro-summon Junk Gardna, in defense mode.
Yami: Synchro what?
Yusei: Synchro summon.
Yami: What summon?
Yusei: Synchro summon.
Yami: What what?
Yusei: Synchro. Summon.
Yami: Oh. What's that?
Yusei: It's when you summon a monster by—
Yami: Oh wait, I seem to have stopped caring.
- Homestar Runner, "Hremail 7" is a faux-flashback episode which features Homestar trying to introduce Strong Bad to the concept of e-mails and the Internet:
Strong Bad: A what-mail on the Inter-what?
- The Simpsons:
Burns: Listen here...I want to join your team.
Homer: You want to join my what?
Smithers: You want to what his team?
- And from "Who Shot Mr Burns, Part 2"
Jasper: You shot who in the what now?
- From "Thirty Minutes Over Tokyo", on the Japanese game show:
Wink: Now, our game shows are a little different from yours. Yours reward knowledge. We punish ignorance.
Homer: Ignor-what? (fire shoots out of Homer's microphone)
- Spoofed on Futurama, in the episode "I, Roommate":
Fry: Where's your bathroom?
Fry: Eh, never mind.
- The Fairly OddParents:
- Danny Phantom:
Jack: It's the Ecto-Exodus Alarm!
Danny, Sam and Jazz: The Ecto-whaty-what?
Stu: Presenting the Bonkomatic Baby Bumper!
Didi: The Bonka-whosit Baby-what?
- My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic:
- In "Bridle Gossip", when Twilight Sparkle tries to assuage her friends' fear of Zecora
Twilight Sparkle: She's a zebra.
Pinkie Pie, Rainbow Dash, Rarity, & Spike: A what?
- In "Stare Master", Fluttershy tries to warn the Cutie Mark Crusaders that they're in danger:
Fluttershy: There's no time! There's a cockatrice on the loose!
Apple Bloom: A cocka-what-now?
- In "The Super Speedy Cider Squeezy 6000", Pinkie Pie's reaction to the Flim-Flam brothers introducing themselves as "traveling sales-ponies nonpareil" is "Nonpa-what?"
- In "Games Ponies Play", when it dawns on the Mane Six that they have mistaken a random tourist for the Equestria Games inspector, Twilight decides to ask:
Ms. Harshwhinny, the Equestria Games inspector, aren't you? (beat) Tourist
: Inspector what-now?
- In one episode of Sheep in the Big City, a plot twist (both Sheep and General Specific lose the mayoral election to a talking ham sandwich) leads to a long chain of characters going "Hubba-whah?"
- King of the Hill:
Student (at a Catholic school): We're learning about transubstantiation.
Peggy (a Protestant): What?
Peggy: Trans what now?
- An episode of Ben 10:
Mayor/Tour Guide: It's a Megawatt.
Mayor/Tour Gide: Exactly.
- Avatar The Last Airbender:
Katara: The Painted Who-Now?
Dock/Xu/Bushi: The Painted Lady.