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Phrase Catcher

Ted: You know what he'd love? He'd really love it if someone came up to him and said his catchphrase.
Dougal: Oh, yeah. I'd say no-one ever does that to him. He'll think you're hilarious.
Father Ted moments before he's assaulted by Richard Wilson

It's common enough for a character to have a catchphrase but not everyone can spend all day spouting it themselves. A Phrase Catcher usually has that certain string of words in the air whenever they're around, but they'll be hearing it and someone else will be saying it.

Maybe anyone seeing them is immediately given to wonder whether they're a bird, a plane, or something else entirely, or maybe everyone feels compelled to announce that character's reputation in the world with a saying that's suspiciously similar each time, but as long as they keep getting a certain response and don't say it personally then they are a Phrase Catcher. If someone always gets a certain response, but always from the same person, then it's as much a Catchphrase as a Phrase Catcher.

On a subnote, if someone has a Berserk Button about being fat, or feels keen to correct anyone who calls them a monkey instead of an ape, or need some other specific feeder line to start off on their own routine, you can rely on that line being fed. However, those examples really belong with their own tropes.

Popular variants include "Shut up, Tropee!" and the greeting Sitcom Archnemeses by saying their name.

Compare Strange Minds Think Alike, Got Me Doing It, and Never Heard That One Before. Subtrope of Running Gag.

Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime & Manga 
  • When each member of the Ayase family meets Yotsuba's tall friend Takashi "Jumbo" Takeda, they seem compelled to say, "You're huge!"
  • Excalibur, Soul Eater: "SO ANNOYING!" There's a particular facial expression that comes with it, too.
  • Hosaka, Minami-ke: "Disgusting..." (usually while in the middle of an Imagine Spot. And shirtless.)
  • Motemitsu of To Love-Ru exists solely for his friends to say "As expected of Motemitsu-Senpai!" whenever he tries to hit on a girl. He always fails miserably.
  • In FLCL, whenever someone gets a good look at Amaro's forehead, the usual response is "those eyebrows". Lampshaded when Naota gets in on it: "What about eyebrows?"
  • In Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei, whenever Nami says something, another character is bound to remark "How normal." This prompts her Catch Phrase "Don't say normal!"
    • The anime adaptation turns this little exchange between Nozomu and Matoi into a Once per Episode event, whenever she first shows up in an episode:
    Nozomu: You've been here?!
    Matoi: Yes. Always.
  • From Machine Robo, after one of Rom Stol's speeches, the villain du jour will ask who he is. His response is a defiant "You do not deserve to know my name!"
  • In Fairy Tail when a guy strips, mostly Gray, someone usually comments "Why is he stripping?!"
    • Also after Gray unconsciously strips, someone always reminds him:
    "Gray, your clothes."
    • Whenever, Erza does something wacky.
    "That's Erza for you."
  • In Kore wa Zombie desu ka?, all the recipients of Mystletainn Kick go: "That's not a kick!"
  • Upon first meeting Hayate in Hayate the Combat Butler, just about everyone remarks about how he has "poor" written all over him or something similar
  • In Steins;Gate, whenever Okabe calls someone out, he receives a "You are the last person I want to hear that from".
  • In Lucky Star, Hiyori often invokes Yutaka and Minami's "She's so strong" in relation to her The Chew Toy moments.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist: Edward Elric lives in horror of others reacting to meeting him as such: “I thought you’d be taller”…after they’ve mistaken him for his brother.
  • Gundam: "IT'S A GUNDAAAM!", as said by most mooks before biting it.
  • Aoi Hana: "You're always so quick to cry, Fumi", said towards the aforementioned Shrinking Violet by her childhood friend, Akira, whenever she catches her in that act.
  • Matsuda of Death Note tends to evoke the response, "Matsuda, you idiot!" whenever he says or does almost anything, particularly during the first half or so of the series, and it's generally Played for Laughs.
    Light: What was that?
    L: Matsuda was being an idiot again.
    Light: Well, that is his specialty...
    Light: Matsuda, you idiot! Who the hell do you think you're shooting at?!
  • In Attack on Titan, every time Christa Lenz is of any help, you can bet someone will either say she is a goddess or that they want to marry her. Regardless of gender.

    Comicbooks 
  • X-Factor: Layla Miller's Catch Phrase, "I'm Layla Miller. I know stuff." mutates into:
    Layla: I'm Layla Miller.
    Madrox: She knows stuff.
    Layla: You notice I haven't had to say that in a while? Everybody else keeps saying it for me.
  • Howard the Duck: "Y... You're a duck!" The shocked stammer is always included the first time someone meets Howard.
  • In the 2003 Batman limited series Arkham Asylum: Living Hell, nascent supervillain Warren "The Great White Shark" White provokes remarks of "You're the worst person I've ever met," from almost everybody he meets. Including The Joker. And demons from Hell.
  • "It's a bird! It's a plane! No, it's Superman!" First introduced in The Adventures of Superman.
  • In Young Justice, Robin would often be put in the role of explaining things for the benefit of his teammates (and the audience.) The exchange "How do you know that?" "Well, I was trained by the world's greatest detective," quickly morphed into someone saying "We can tell you were trained by the world's greatest detective" every time he pointed out something glaringly obvious.
  • Batman (and later Dick Grayson in his role as Batman) gets "I thought you'd be taller" absurdly often from people who have never met him before. Despite being 6'2". (Perhaps Batman's legendary reputation means people expect him to be ten feet tall. It makes a bit more sense for Dick, who's around 5'10".)
  • Reggie Mantle of Archie Comics is always called out as "somebody who talks about anything but himself."
  • While Deadpool was cursed by Loki to look like Thom Cruz, he got "Say, aren't you Thom Cruz?" from pretty much everybody who saw him unmasked. Including aliens.
  • Fight-Man, "'cause one shot is all he needs!"
  • In the Astérix series, Obélix is constantly remembered that he is not allowed to have any magic potion, having fallen into a cauldron full of it when he was a baby.

    Commercials 

    Fan Works 

    Film 
  • "You'll shoot your eye out" from A Christmas Story.
  • Forrest Gump: "Are you crazy, or just plain stupid?"
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: "Sea Turtles".
  • In Prince Caspian, The Film of the Book, Reepicheep is often informed that "You are a mouse!" by those he is about to kill. This annoys him to no end ("You people have no imagination!")
  • Escape from New York: "I thought you were dead."
    • This phrase was used in the same manner ten years earlier in the 1971 John Wayne Western Big Jake; whether the more recent film was alluding to the earlier is not clear.
    • Later, in the sequel Escape from L.A.: "I thought you'd be taller."
    • Similarly, in Ed Wood, everyone says this about Bela Lugosi when Ed mentions Bela's involvement in his next movie. Heartbreakingly subverted later in the film with Bela's death, and Ed having to quietly confirm his friend's passing.
  • Alien: Resurrection: "Ripley! I thought you were dead!"
    Ripley: Yeah, I get a lot of that lately.
  • Miller's Crossing: "Jesus, Tom!"
  • The Big Lebowski: "Shut the fuck up, Donny!" from Walter and The Dude.
    • And "Where's the fucking money, Lebowski?" to The Dude and finally from The Dude to the Big Lebowski.
    • "I am the walrus..."
  • Fargo: Nearly everyone who ever met Carl Showalter describes him as "kinda funny-lookin'". How so? "Oh, in a general kinda way."
  • Dante Hicks in Clerks gets two, one because of and one despite the "I assure you we're open" sign he has to write on a bedsheet with shoe polish because the shutters were gummed shut. For the rest of the day, people ask him "What smells like shoe polish?". Dante is also the catcher for the phrase "You open?", which almost every customer asks before entering the store...in spite of, again, the big honking sign out front.
  • The infamous Kaiju The Giant Claw is recurringly compared to a battleship (something James Rolfe really didn't understand).
  • All the main Predator films have the titular creature being called "one ugly motherfucker", usually upon being seen without the mask (in the second, Harrigan stops midway but the Predator completes the sentence; in Predators, it's said in Russian).
  • Paul's grandfather in A Hard Day's Night is very clean, as everybody seems to notice (the reason is an Actor Allusion, since the actor played Alfred "You dirty old man!" Steptoe).
  • In The Hebrew Hammer people always remind Mordechai that "the fate of Hanukkah is resting on your shoulders", which just stresses him out.
  • In Galaxy Quest, both human and alien fans of Alexander Dane greet him with "By Grabthar's hammer!", the catchphrase of his Proud Warrior Race character in the Show Within a Show. He's not amused.
  • In the film version of Big Trouble, everyone's first impression of the Suitcase Nuke is that "it looks like a garbage disposal."
  • "Goofie Toofie! Pick up your pants!"
  • Across Crank and its sequel, High Voltage, everyone seems to pick up "Fuck you, Chelios!" It's so often repeated, there's a montage of the times it's said during High Voltage.
  • Philadelphia: Everyone Joe Miller hands a card to: "You're the TV guy!"
  • Toy Story 2: "Ride like the wind, Bullseye!"
  • WeekendatBernies: Most inhabitants think the titular character is still alive despite being dead, typical response is "Hi Bernie!" between the two movies, his name is spoken so often in varying degree of reaction that speaking his name alone fulfills the trope. Oddly enough, when proven dead, some people will insist he's still alive "He's Alive I tell you, I tried to kill. But he's still alive. SEE?!"

    Literature 
  • Harry Potter. A lot of people tell him that "You look like your father but you've got Lily's eyes". In the sixth book, he replies "I hear this all the time".
  • Steven Brust's Dragaera: "Shut up, Loiosh."
    • So common a phrase, Vlad doesn't always wait for Loiosh to say something before using it.
  • "Beep-beep, Richie" in Stephen King's IT.
  • "Yub yub, Commander" from the X-Wing Series. Started as a fairly funny joke, but eventually became the phrase said whenever someone did something that annoyed or surprised Commander Wedge Antilles.
    • In the Han Solo trilogy, "Kibbick is an idiot."
  • Ravenor's Carl Thonious - the things he knows...
  • In a very meta case, Ciaphas Cain only ever refers to himself as a "Hero of the Imperium" (no bold) facetiously - the bombastic announcements of his status as a HERO OF THE IMPERIUM! is purely an invention of this wiki (though they do reflect the rest of the Imperium's opinion of him).
  • In Pyramid Power, a science-fiction novel playing with Greek, Roman, and Egyptian mythology with loads of showing their work provided by the Badass Unintentional, it seems that the everybody but his men seems to at least think "Odysseus, you bastard!" at some point about him.
  • In Magic's Promise, the second Heralds of Valdemar book about Vanyel, everyone he encounters tells him, "You look like hell." It's justified in that he does.
    • In Winds of Fury, the standard greeting Princess Elspeth gets while making her way home through Valdemar to the capital is "We heard you were dead!"
  • In the Vorkosigan Saga, Miles' cousin Ivan Vorpatril is referred to by all well-knowing individuals as "Ivan-you-idiot" or "that idiot, Ivan", and variations thereof.
    • To the point where it took the main character years to realize that "Ivan" wasn't his middle name.
  • Lampshaded in The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul, when Kate Schecter deliberately tries to avoid uttering Dirk's professional Phrase Catcher. Too late.
  • In the Nightside series, Shotgun Suzie is known to be so much of a Phrase Catcher for "Oh Christ, it's her, run!" that it's effectively her other nickname.
  • Both Tyrion and Jaime Lannister think of Cersei as their "sweet sister".
  • Joey Bettany / Maynard, the heroine of the Chalet School series, and Mary-Lou Trelawney, one of her successors, both get this a lot. In the former's case, it's "Joey always does things wholesale!" (especially referring to her army of children) and "that is so like Joey". For the latter, there's "it isn't cheek, it's just Mary-Lou."

    Live-Action TV 
  • Doctor Who:
    • At least once per series, someone will ask the Doctor, "Doctor who?" when he introduces himself. This is often played with.
      • In "Love & Monsters", when discussing the Doctor, one guy subverts the normal caught phrase and asks "Doctor what?"
      • "The Wedding of River Song", the series 6 finale, closes with Dorium's head shouting this after Eleven. He says that "Doctor who?" is "The first question! The question that must never be answered! Hidden in plain sight! The question you've been running from all your life!"
      • The ending of "Asylum of the Daleks" turns this phrase Up to Eleven. Thousands of Daleks, tier upon tier and circle after circle, in the hall around the Doctor start chanting "Doctor who?" in unison, much to the Doctor's delight. Oswin has wiped anything related to him from their knowledge.
      • Come "The Bells of Saint John", the Doctor shows up on Clara's doorstep — in full monk dress — and she asks him the question. He gives his usual response of "Just the Doctor", but then quickly asks her to ask it twice more, since he just loves it when people ask him that.
    • When someone enters the TARDIS, the standard reaction is to wonder at how it is Bigger on the Inside, usually with those exact words.
      • This was lampshaded/parodied back in the '70s. When Benton enters, the Doctor prompts him with "Aren't you going to say 'It's bigger on the inside'?" and Benton replied, "Well, it's pretty obvious, isn't it?"
      • Even more hilariously, in "The Three Doctors", when the Brigadier sees the interior of the TARDIS for the first time, he doesn't believe it is bigger on the inside. "So this is what you've been doing with UNIT funds and equipment all this time. How's it done? Some sort of optical illusion?" "Oh no, they come like this."
      • In the revived series, the Doctor mouths the words along when Martha Jones says the phrase. He then blithely replies, "Is it? Hadn't noticed!"
      • Donna's first encounter with the TARDIS is when she materializes inside it, so her moment of realization comes when they land and she steps out, seeing for the first time that it's... smaller on the outside.
      • In "The End of Time", when Wilfred Mott sees the inside of the TARDIS he looks expectedly shocked and awed. Before giving him a chance (they're in a hurry) the Doctor says, "Yes, it's bigger on the inside," to which Wilf replies, "No, I just thought it'd be... cleaner". (A possible Call Back to the days when the console room was minimalist white with silver/grey console.)
      • Played for drama in "The Waters of Mars". As the Doctor goes into A God Am I mode, he brings the astronauts to Earth in the TARDIS. One says, "What is that thing? It's bigger on the inside! Who the hell are you?" before running away in terror.
      • The Eleventh Doctor asks Amy "Any passing remarks you'd like to say?" when she first goes in.
        Amy: I'm in my nightie.
      • Subverted again with Eleven and Amy's boyfriend Rory:
        The Doctor: It's a lot to take in, isn't it? Tiny box, huge on the inside, what's that about? Let me explain...
        Rory: It's another dimension.
        The Doctor: Basically, it's another dimens... What?
        (Rory explains in length how he figured it out, and the Doctor cuts in, clearly annoyed)
        The Doctor: I like the bit when someone says "it's bigger on the inside". I always look forward to that...
      • In the season 6 episode "The Doctor's Wife", upon being given the form of a human lady, the TARDIS is revealed to think this of humans and the Doctor in terms of a soul. Also, as the TARDIS takes repossession of the Police Box from House, the Doctor explains that House's problem is that he's "just so small on the inside!"
      • Subverted one more time in the season seven Christmas special, when Clara Oswin Oswald first enters the TARDIS. You can see the Doctor's anticipation for the Catchphrase, and then she says (to his visible chagrin)...
        Clara: It's smaller on the outside.
        The Doctor: Okay, that is a first.
    • Another which gets less used and is more specific to the Tenth Doctor is "Help me," which wakes him out of a coma in "The Christmas Invasion" and to which he replies "Two words I never refuse," in "The Next Doctor", setting up a tragic irony in "The Waters of Mars".
    • The Doctor often gives a good "Oh, Rory!" as a reaction to Rory, whether it be him acting dumb, kind or just so... human.
    • Whenever Captain Jack meets someone new:
      Jack: Captain Jack Harkness, and who are you?
      The Doctor: Stop it.
      Jack: Just saying hello!
    • "Yes, we know who you are," after Harriet Jones introduces herself. Even the Daleks get in on it, as do the Sycorax.
  • Spaced had some lasting an episode, such as Daisy being told to "Get off your arse!" on three separate occasions, or when Mike is dressed in jogging gear and everyone he met told him "Nice outfit". Over the series, people asked Brian the tortured artist what his work was about, then reply to his answer with a suggestion that didn't fit:
    Brian: Anger. Pain. Fear. Aggression.
    Brian's Mum: Watercolours?
    • "Hello Brian"
  • In the TV series The Saint, right before the opening credits, somebody would always refer to "... the _____ Simon Templar." (Fill in the blank with 'illustrious', 'infamous', or something like that.) Which would cause Simon to glance up and note the halo appearing over his head.
  • The opening of every episode of That Girl, in which someone calls attention somehow to Ann Marie, usually by saying something that ends in them speaking the show's title. (i.e. "I think the best one for this job is...that girl!")
  • One of the oldest examples is from The Buster Brown Show: "Plunk your magic twanger, Froggy!" (Is That What They're Calling It Now?)
  • Due South: Eventually, everyone else takes over explaining that Fraser came to Chicago on the trail of the killers of his father and, for reasons that don't need exploring at this juncture, remained attached as liaison with the Canadian Consulate. Thank you kindly.
  • The Young Ones: "Oh! Have we got a video?"
  • In every episode of Police Squad! and The Naked Gun movies: "Cigarette?" "Yes, I know," or "Yes, it is."
  • Top Gear, of course, has its "tame racing driver". Some say he can swim seven lengths underwater, and that he has webbed buttocks. All we know is, he's called The Stig.
  • Arrested Development has a few, but the most common is George Michael's girlfriend, Ann Veal.
    Virtually all the Bluths: Her?
  • The Golden Girls has "Shut up, Rose" when the aforementioned Cloudcuckoolander tries to launch into a St. Olaf anecdote, to the extent of (paraphrasing):
    Rose: Well, back in St. Olaf—shut up, Rose.
    Dorothy: ...Well?
    Rose: Well, that's as far as I ever get!
  • In Misfits, the words "What a prick!" literally seem to follow Nathan around like a smell.
  • In Fawlty Towers, we have: "It's okay, he's from Barcelona." The meaning is that it's OK that Manuel is incompetent, or a Cloudcuckoolander, or that we're pretending he is in order to maintain the Fawlty Towers Plot.
  • 'Kamen Rider Decade:
  • The West Wing: "I serve at the pleasure of the President."
  • Scrubs "Hooch is CRAZY!"
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation: "Thank you, Mr. Data," or some variation thereof, whenever Data gets too verbose.
  • "Who is that fat bastard?" of Alexi Sayle, in Alexi Sayle's Stuff.
  • Drug runners from The Wire on the streets of Baltimore when Omar Little is out in broad daylight: "Omar comin'!"
  • "Chuck, stay in the car!" That kinda stopped around season 3, but they could always have someone else catching the "Stay in the car".
  • iCarly: "Gibby!"
  • Frasier - When Roz turns up to a costume party in a black leather dress she has to explain who she is.
    Roz: I'm O, from The Story of O
    Anyone and everyone: Oooooohhhhh!
  • From Power Rangers Jungle Fury: "Breathe, Fran."
  • In the season 1 episode of How I Met Your Mother "The Limo", Ted's date has a habit to hug upon meeting a new person. Everyone she hugs replies with the same phrase: "Oh, you're friendly".
  • Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide:
    • "Do you have hall-passes?" by any teacher when they see students up to wacky hijinks in the halls.
    • The show has a character named Claire Sawyer, a student who strives to be a lawyer.
    (Someone has a problem)
    Claire: (pops out of nowhere, hands character in trouble her card) Claire Sawyer, Future Lawyer.
    Whoever Happens To Be Around: Claire. We've known you since pre-K.
  • A fast-talking character in an episode of WKRP in Cincinnati couldn't figure out why people kept telling him "Speed Kills!"
  • Lucy Hatcher in The Practice tended to draw annoyed yells of "LUCY!" from the others at the firm.
  • St. Elsewhere particularly throughout season 2: "You're a pig, Ehrlich".
  • From Leverage:
    • There's "Dammit, Hardison!".
    • Parker frequently gets "there's something wrong with you."
  • One Tree Hill: "Just say [Whatever Tim just said, but to the point & less Pretty Fly for a White Guy-like], Tim."
  • In Game of Thrones, if someone is meeting Jon Snow for the first time, there's at least a 50/50 chance that they will respond with some variation of "You must be Ned Stark's bastard."
  • John Munch: "Shut up, John." Usually in response to a conspiracy theory.
  • 'Allo 'Allo!: Nearly every character on the show has a Catch Phrase. Sometimes they are directed at s specific person, the one and only.
    • René keeps getting "Oooooh, René!" from Yvette. Maria, Mimi or Madame Edith are little less hammy, and it's mostly "Oooh, René". Lt. Gruber often exclaims "Ooh, René" as well.
    • René from his wife: "What are you doing holding that serving girl in your arms?" Whenever he's caught in a compromising position with one of the waitresses.
    • Madame Edith, whenever she catches her husband René hugging his mistress, gets: "You stu-pid woman! Can you not see that <insert ridiculous explanation>?"
    • Herr Otto Flick from Gestapo always says to Helga: "You may kiss me." She kisses him very passionately. He seems to like it, yet he remains poker-faced.
  • Sanctuary's Henry Foss has "Well done, Henry," which he usually gets from Magnus whenever he accomplishes something particularly noteworthy or helpful. Other characters eventually pick up on this, sometimes even imitating Magnus's English accent in the process. The phrase always makes Henry smile or laugh, and sometimes he gives people expectant looks or encourages it with "Three words, please," or a similar phrase.
  • Whenever the eponymous protagonist of El Chavo del ocho hits someone, that person will angrily shout him "¡¡Tenía que ser el CHAVO del Ocho!!" ("It had to be El CHAVO del Ocho!!")

    Music 
  • They Might Be Giants' "You Probably Get That A Lot":
    You probably get that a lot
    I'll bet that people say that a lot while you
    Are sarcastically lip-syncing along
    To words they felt were spoken spontaneously

    Newspaper Comics 

    Radio 

    Tabletop Games 
  • Warhammer 40,000 fan's reactions to whatever Tzeentch does, "... which was probably what he planned anyway."
    • Alternately, they use a line from Death Note for anything Tzeentch does: "Just as planned"
    • Around these parts it's "I touched that!" since the general theory is that rather than actually having insanely convoluted plans, he just takes credit for everything anyone does ever and claims it's part of his plan.
    • It's hard to hear the Tyranids be mentioned without someone adding "Om-nom-nom-nom." at some point.
    • Mentioning the Imperial Guard will similarly bring any or all of up the topics of flashlights and laser sights, cardboard/t-shirt armour, Tank Goodness, and testicular fortitude.
    • ...and the Ultramarines will virtually always be decried as Games Workshop's pets.
    • In-universe, virtually every psyker describes the effect an approaching Tyranid fleet has on their psychic abilities as "a shadow in the Warp". This is usually the reader and/or narrator's cue to begin panicking.

    Theater 
  • If 1776 is to be believed, no one could refer to John Adams as anything other than "obnoxious and disliked". As a historical note, the phrase comes from Adams himself - it was his own description of how he was perceived by his Congressional colleagues in his later career.
    • Likewise the opening number and throughout has Adams the constant recipient of, "Sit down, John! For God's sake sit down!"
  • Cyrano de Bergerac: Christian. Everyone around him says: "He’s fair!". And Le Bret: Only Cyrano says to him: "Never scold".
  • In Avenue Q, Gary Coleman complains about people quoting his Diff'rent Strokes Catch Phrase back to him:
    Try having people stopping you to ask you:
    "Whatchyou talkin' 'bout, Willis?"
    (beat)
    It gets old.

    Videogames 
  • In Saints Row 2, almost every character returning from the first game asks the protagonist "Did you do something with your hair?" when reuniting with them, as it's possible to make him look entirely different from what he looked like in the first game - up to and including switching genders. S/he lampshades this twice, responding to Aisha with "I've been getting that a lot", and interrupting Julius with "I didn't do shit to my hair!"
  • Variations on "You're dead." follow Shepard a lot in Mass Effect 2. Of course, s/he was.
  • Fable: "The Chicken Chaser? Do you chase chickens?"
    • Note that you only get this reaction if you keep your default title. If you get a different one, townsfolk will instantly develop a new stock reaction to address you with.
  • Namecalling abound whenever a Special Infected spawns in Left 4 Dead. "Boomer!"
  • Fatal Fury: "Geese..."
  • Yukimaru from Disgaea 2, zam. And her unique way of building chakra, zam.
    • It started off as her Catch Phrase though, zam. Then everybody started doing it, zam.
    • As it turns out, even years after the first game and around people who have never met him, Vyers has never been able to shed his Mid-Boss monkier.
    Vyers: As your personal life coach, moi am here to teach you what true strength is all about!
    Mao: True strength? You look more like you've got "Mid-Boss" level strength.
    Vyers: H-How did you know that infernal nickname!?
  • Mega Man Zero: "You are Zero, the legendary Reploid". He does need the reminders though.
  • "When something smells, it's usually the Butz." Larry Butz from the Ace Attorney games, that is.
  • Memry from Ghost Trick. Her eccentric behavior earns the following series of remarks a few times:
    "Odd girl."
    "I agree."
    "Me, too."
  • Dante's "Jackpot!" from Devil May Cry seems to be one of these, as both Vergil (in unison with Dante during DMC3) and Nero (in 4) adopt it while finishing off that game's Big Bad (Trish also sets up Dante's use of it in the first game, right before he takes out Mundus). Given Dante's words in 3 ("Remember what we used to say?"), it's implied he coined the phrase alongside Vergil, back when they were still close in their childhood.
  • In Harvester, the protagonist, Steve, has amnesia. Most of the characters don't believe him and assume it's some kind of prank because, "You always were a kidder, Steve."

    Visual Novels 
  • Fate/stay night: Everyone calls Kotomine Kirei a "fake priest." For Tohsaka, it's because he's sort of like a double agent between the Church and the Mage's association. For Shirou, it's because he hates him.
  • Whenever it's suggested that Kinzo from Umineko no Naku Koro ni did something crazy, everyone responds with "I wouldn't put it past Father."

    Webcomics 

    Web Originals 
  • "Shut up, Mokuba" in Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series. Also was originally Seto Kaiba's Catchphrase, but it spread. To the point where nobody says anything else at all to him in The Movie.
    • Even when they're asking Mokuba a question. Mokuba finally gets fed up with it in episode 30.
    Grandpa: Shut up Mokub-
    Mokuba: No, YOU shut up!
    Mokuba: Oh God, I'm so sorry.
    • "Get bent, ya freaky fish guy!"
    "I am NOT a freaky fish guy!"
    "Mako's a freaky fish guy!"
  • In the Yu Yu Hakusho Abridged movie, I'm pretty sure every character says "Dammit, Hinageshi!" at least once.
  • Red vs. Blue has several:
    • If a character is about to die, expect to hear "HURK! Bleeeehhhh..."
    • "Son of a bitch!" after an explosion, attack, or death.
    • "Shotgun!" as soon as the Reds get their hands on a vehicle.
    • If someone is being possessed by a ghost really an AI expect to hear "Heauegerkergerk!"
    • And of course, the response to any of Sister's statements is a confused "Yeah! Wait, what?!"
    "Yeah... or we could raid the medical supplies for morphine."
    (Death by aspirin overdose) "I know! I didn't think it was possible. And trust me, I've tried."
    "Yeah? Well they say girls can't ejaculate either. But guess what?!"
    "Yeah, sorry, doesn't sound like I have any of the skills you need. Unless you wanna see my ping pong ball trick!"
    "But I thought, you know, who wants to be known as the girl who's had seven abortions?"
    • In Season 9, any mention of Agent Maine doing battle with someone gets "I almost feel sorry for them" as a response.
  • Several examples in AH.com: The Series, the most common being "Blame Thande!" when Thande's in the room.
  • In Bowser's Kingdom, whenever Steve appears and says his catchphrase (which is "Hi Guys!"), Hal usually responds back and says "Hi, Steve..."
  • Dragon Ball Z Abridged:
    "Krillin!" "What?" "Too Soon!"
    "God dammit, Nappa"
    • Whenever someone says something creepy or perverted to Gohan:
    Gohan: "I need an adult?"
    Not Gohan: "I am an adult."
    • Also, any time Goku uses or mentions the Kaio-ken, someone (usually Goku's opponent) inevitably responds with some variation of "Kaio-what?"
  • In articles on Cracked', anything remotely Badass mentioned in an article will have mentions of testicular hardness follow.
  • The Classic Doctor Who Twitter Blog likes to announce explosions with "And then there was a s'plosion!" and variations thereof.
  • The Funday Pawpet Show gives us Blitz, a young German Shepherd who is often on the receiving end of the mocking line "I don't even know what that iiiiiiiis!"
  • Mentions of The Room on That Guy with the Glasses lead to "Ohai [contributor's name here]".
  • In the Mortal Kombat parody sprite cartoon, someone will always call Baraka "the ugliest mofo they've ever seen." Also, "Shut yo spittin' ass up!" after Kabal goes on his rants.
  • In Ultra Fast Pony, Fluttershy's catch phrase "I'm just so shy!" catches on with the other characters. In later episodes, if she doesn't comment on her shyness, someone else (like the narrator) will do it for her.
  • On Steam Train, it's common for Ross to be the scapegoat when something goes wrong.
    Danny: Goddamnit, Ross!
  • From Welcome to Night Vale, we have "John Peters—you know, the farmer..." which is said every single time his full name is mentioned.
    • Subverted once, when its revealed that he's been replaced; "John Peters- you know, the imposter?"

    Western Animation 
  • Magic School Bus has Carlos being told his name when he tells a bad joke.
  • In Futurama, nobody likes "Wernstrom!" either.
    • "Who are you"/"Who's that"
    Scruffy: "I'm Scruffy, the janitor."
  • "Scooby-Doo! Where are you?"
  • Courage the Cowardly Dog: "Stupid Dog!"
  • The Incredibles implies that this is the case for Frozone.
    Mr. Incredible: Frozone! Ice to see you drop by!
    Frozone: Ha! (deadpan) Never Heard That One Before.
  • King of the Hill: "Thatherton!" This started out as Hank's Catch Phrase, but everyone got so used to it that someone would fill in when he wasn't there.
  • The Fairly OddParents "Dinkleberg!"
  • In the American Darkstalkers cartoon series, every single character, at some point or another, remarks that Rikuo is "strangely attractive for a fishman".
    • In the last episode, he wearily replies, "So I've been told..."
  • Everyone seems compelled to ask Phineas and Ferb "Aren't you a little young to be _____?" But it's also a Catch Phrase, because they always respond with "Yes. Yes, we are." (On other occasions, this or variations of this will be done by other characters - for example, someone asking if Candace is a little old for something.) It's played with when a contractor delivering construction supplies says it, and another replies "Yes, yes he is. Sorry, Phineas, he's new."
    • "Hey, where's Perry?" whenever Perry isn't around, and then "Oh, there you are, Perry" when he returns home from his mission. Usually said by Phineas, but increasing spread around the cast, which is naturally lampshaded like crazy.
    Stacy: Hey, where's Perry? What, I'm like the only one who hasn't said it.
    • Perry catches a lot of phrases, including some of Dr. Doofenshmirtz's Catch Phrases, mostly "CURSE YOU, PERRY THE PLATYPUS!" and in earlier episodes "Ah, Perry the Platypus. Your timing is [adjective]. And by that I mean COMPLETELY [UN-ADJECTIVE]!"
  • The Emperor's New School: "Pull the lever, Kronk!" "WRONG LEVER!" "Why do we even have that lever?"
  • Metalocalypse: By now, the Metal Masked Assassin should know that "That's my bread and butter you're fucking with."
  • Kim Possible's Arch-Enemy usually tells her "You think you're all that, Kim Possible! But you're not!" Sometimes she'll do something remarkable or say she's planning to do so, and someone will say "It's impossible!". Ron's responds "Check the name." (About the only time the punny names are noticed in-universe.) Wade often catches "You rock, Wade" from Kim and Ron.
  • Animaniacs:
  • "Thwip Thwip!" often said to Spider-Man (and Peter Parker too, strangely enough) in Ultimate Spider-Man.
  • Chowder: "I'm not your boyfriend!"
  • From The Simpsons: "SKINNER!"
    • "AAAAAH! Sideshow Bob!"
    • In the episode about The Stonecutters, Lenny repeatedly lets slip a secret to Homer, and Carl tells him "Shut up!" The third time this happens, Carl is eating, so Homer says it for him.
  • The Penguins of Madagascar: "Kowalski, options" or "Kowalski, analysis," always spoken by Skipper.
  • ReBoot: MIKE!
  • Freakazoid!: In the episode that introduces Professor Jones, people keep asking him "Weren't you in a show with a robot?"
  • George of the Jungle: "Watch Out For That TREE!"
  • South Park:
    • While it's usually Stan and Kyle shouting the "Oh my god, They Killed Kenny!" exchange, there have been occasions where Kenny dies and other characters say similar things in the exact same tone of voice:
      • From the Manson Christmas Episode:
    Charles Manson: Oh my god, they killed the little orange-coat kid!
    • From "Chef's Salty Chocolate Balls":
    Moviegoer 1: Oh my god, I found a penny!
    Moviegoer 2: You bastard!
    • From "WTF":
    "Ay, Dios Mio! Mataron El Pollo Loco!"
    "Bastardos!"
    • Every episode with "Towelie" has someone shut him down with "You're a towel." (which always gets "You're a towel!" in response)
    • Chef would often greet the kids with "Hello there, children." which the kids would respond in unison with "Hey Chef." often the dialogue would continue with Chef asking how the kids are doing or how their day is, one of the kids will respond with "Bad." and Chef will ask "Why Bad?"
  • Wakfu: "Iop brain!"
  • "Shut up, Meg" in Family Guy.
  • In the short-lived Sam & Max: Freelance Police animated series, the Cold Open would generally end with someone asking "Who are these guys?"
  • Beast Wars: "Shut up, Rattrap!"
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: Being the only member of the mane cast with actual hands, Spike gets a lot of "Spike, take a letter..." Even from Twilight Sparkle, who can easily write using her telekinesis.
  • Many folks' reaction to meeting The Great Grape Ape for the first time is to shout "Yeow! A gorill-il-il-il-illa!" and run away.

    This Very Wiki 

    Real Life 
  • Celebrities with catchphrases soon tire of hearing them from every fan they meet.
    • In the same vein, if you go into voicework, you had better be prepared for many requests to speak in-character.
    • Parodied in the Avenue Q song "It Sucks To Be Me"
    Gary Coleman: Try having people people stopping you to ask you, "Whatchoo talkin' bout, Willis?" It gets old.
  • Any tall person will quickly get tired of 'How's the weather up there?'
    Tall Person: Fair to partly stupid.
    • (Spits) Rainy.
    • Or how about "You're really tall." ...Thanks...or "How did you get so tall?"
    • "Wow. Do you play basketball?" "No, do you play miniature golf?"
    • Also, anyone who's ever had a haircut will be familiar with the trope, as they'll probably have to come up with a few stock phrases to last them a couple of weeks. "You've had a haircut!" isn't particularly inane, ("You have a remarkable eye for detail,") but "Did you have a haircut?" Er, "Yes. Yes I did."
  • Every cashier at any cash register with a barcode scanner at any store ever, upon having difficulty scanning an item, will hear from the customer some variation of, "No price? I guess that means it's free!" This is usually followed by a polite chuckle from the cashier.
  • Window cleaners just love being told: "You've missed a bit!"
  • Kikuko Inoue's Running Gag and Catch Phrase is claiming herself to be '17 years old'. This caught on to her characters saying so, and when that happens, you can bet that there'll be someone who'll respond with "Oi oi..."
  • Little kids hear 'you grow up so fast' all the time and may get annoyed because they usually don't feel they grow up that fast.
  • Pregnant women tire very quickly of being told "You're so big" or "You sure it's not twins?" or asked "When are you due?" or "Is it a boy or girl?" Think twice before you go to say any of this to a pregnant woman. You're probably the fifth one that day and she's likely to snap.
    • And woe betide someone who say these phrases before they've ascertained whether said woman is pregnant or not...
  • People who look far younger than their actual age also get this all the time, especially when they're in their 20s. "You've graduated from university?! How old are you?" "I'm twenty-two" followed by the inevitable "Wow, I thought you were only 17!"
    • The older they get, though, the less they complain about that happening.
  • People who costume as Star Wars characters will get "These aren't the droids you're looking for" thrown at them several times a day, irrespective of if they're dressed as Storm Troopers or Rebel pilots. Also expect a Storm Trooper to be asked if they aren't a little short for the job, even if they're six feet tall.
    • As a side example of this, people cosplaying Firefly's Jayne, or at least wearing his hat, will be subjected to variations on "that is a cunning hat" pretty much continuously.
  • The nurses and medical assistants who room patients have heard about fifty billion comments and jokes about how evil the scale is. No patient can resist.
  • High school seniors get some variation on "So, where are you going to college?" from everyone they meet.
    • Or, if they live in a country that has conscription, ‘Do you know what you’re going to do in the army?’
  • Followed shortly in college by "So, what're you studying?" or "What's your major?" from almost everyone once they learn (or reasonably guess) that you're a student, especially fellow students.
  • At the other end of the classroom, their instructors from middle school on up will invariably be tired of hearing "Is this going to be on the test?"
    • Although, after 12 or so years, a lot of students also get tired of hearing "Will this be on the test?", "Why do we have to learn this?" (in some cases), etc.
  • Anyone who gets a new job should expect to have to hear "What do you do now?" and/or "So how do you like the new job?" from every single person they know for the next month or so.
  • Averted in the case of Miranda's Patricia Hodge. She cheerily admits in this interview she doesn't mind people saying Penny's Catch Phrase "Such fun" to her, apart from when they get it wrong and say "What fun" instead.
  • When a writer tells a stranger than they are a writer, inevitably the stranger will say, "You know, I had an idea for a novel once, but I didn't have the time." Because everyone knows writers are just guys with nothing better to do that sit around and write.
  • Lil' Bub, a female cat with a perma-kitten appearance, is usually told be her owner "Good job, Bub".

    Examples each of which is also properly a Catchphrase but will be kept here because that page is long
  • On The Wire, whenever someone is introduced to Detective Lester Freamon, they'll always ask about his time spent working in the police pawnshop unit. Cue the following exchange:
    Various: You were there...thirteen years?
    Freamon: And four months.
  • "Yes, Minister", until a season finale where Jim Hacker rose to power: "Yes, Prime Minister." (After that, both series and catchphrase were "Yes, Prime Minister.")
  • Saturday Night Live: "Jane, you ignorant slut!"
  • Well, excuuuse me Princess! (The Legend of Zelda cartoon)
  • The Simpsons - "Hi, everybody!" is the Catchphrase, then comes "Hi, Doctor Nick". Even people suing him for negligence say it. Even animals say it.
    Mel Gibson: Hi everybody.
    (Brief pause)
    Dr. Nick: (from the back of a crowd) Hi Mr. Gibson!
  • The Reduced Shakespeare Company Radio Show - "Yes, ladies and gentlemen, and that's because (name of famous actress) is not actually (name of famous actress), but our own Reed Martin, Professional Impressionist!"
    Reed: Thank you. Thank you very much.
    Adam: I thought something was weird!
  • Sam & Max: "You crack me up, little buddy!"
  • Transformers: Beast Wars: Rattrap's Catch Phrase ("We're all gonna die.") is always shortly followed by "Shut up, Rattrap."
    Rattrap: "It's like I always say: We're all gonna die."
    [Everyone glares]
    Rattrap: "I know, I know, 'Shut up, Rattrap.'"
    • Actually subverted in the finale. When Rattrap says this, Rhinox follows with a straight "Yep".
  • The Wind in the Willows: Whenever Toad declares some fad "the only thing", the others — Badger, if no one else — say, "Oh, Toad..." The one time Mole does it, the others say, "Oh, Mole..." instead.
  • Deconstructed in Father Ted; one episode has Ted spotting Richard Wilson (from One Foot in the Grave), and, following reassurance that Wilson will find it hilarious, shouts his character's catchphrase at him. Naturally, Wilson starts attacking him.
  • Fez in That '70s Show:
    Fez: Good day.
    Various: But Fez...
    Fez: I said "Good day!"

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