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Euphemism: a word you use in place of one you can't spell.
, Archie Comics
A character tries to use a big, impressive word or two. Unfortunately, he's having trouble pronunci-pronouncia
...er, saying it, whether due to unfamiliarity with the word, or a speech imp-p-p-p
... trouble talking. After a couple tries, he'll give up and use an easier word
, or just clam up completely.
is, obviously, Porky Pig
of Looney Tunes
Contrast Sesq-q-q-q-quipedalian Loquaci-louca-louqa-smart talk
, and Spock Speak
, this trope's exact opposite. Also Compare Delusions of Eloquence
, where the character muddles the big words but ploughs onward anyway. If this doesn't happen ever, it's because Realistic Diction Is Unrealistic
Not related to Cannot Spit It Out
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Anime and Manga
- Yotsuba pulls one of these in the chapter where she draws all over her dad's face.
- An old EC Tales from the Crypt comic featured a version of "Sleeping Beauty", with a running gag of characters talking about the impenet- impentr- inpenet- thick wall of thorns surrounding the cursed castle.
- Suberverted in the "Earthquake" storyline of the Batman comics. Robin is examine the broadcasts from "Quakemaster" who claims to have caused the earthquake. When he realizes that the villain is avoiding words that contain the letter B, he deduces that the Quakemaster is actually a known bad guy who has a lisp.
- Richie Rich once told Cadbury of his distinctive difficulty pronouncing the word "ventriloquist". It later proves critical for Cadbury to realize that the Richie with him is an impostor when he says the word correctly.
- Dave Barry In Cyberspace compares reading typewritten documents to "listening to Porky Pig try to complete a sentence" because of all the mistakes that have to be crossed out.
- In the third Artemis Fowl book, one of the Dumb Muscle bodyguards has one of these. "inca-incapci—incap—broken."
- In the Discworld book Equal Rites, there's a young wizard master named Simon, who has great difficulty with saying words that begin with certain letters, to the point where other characters often attempt to fill in the words for him so he won't have to go to the struggle of saying them.
Live Action TV
- Commander Weatherby from The Navy Lark.
"I'd like a return ticket-t-t-t-t-t-ticket-t-t-t-t-t to the Digital-Digital-Digital I-mbrI-mbrI-mbrI-tidley-I-tidley-I, the Digital-mbrDigital-mbr-Digital-mbrI-tidley-tidley-mbro-mbro-mbro to hell with the Digital Islands, I'll go to Jersey".
- Khalid in Baldur's Gate tends to stutter. A lot. As a result he does sound quite a bit like Porky.
- During the end credits of Star Control 2, while the game shows funny fake outtakes of conversations with the aliens, the Khor-Ah tries to give an intimidating speech but ends up failing to spell the word "Annihilate". It then gets REALLY upset and demands to speak to whomever wrote his script.
- In The Longest Journey, George parodies the Star Trek Captain's Log but messes up "animal" so badly that he switches to "weird thing." Yeah, Drugs Are Bad.
- The Nostalgia Critic does this at the start of his 100th episode:
"It's hard to believe that such a handsome man could become even handsomener— han— hand— han— ner, prettier."
- The Nostalgia Chick find herself unable to get out the word "nice" in her Top Five Least Worst Disney Sequels, so settles for "less mean".
- From a parody of Metal Gear Solid 2, we have a character introduce himself as "Shashalashka! I mean Shalashishka. Lashashaska. Shiska - OCELOT."
- An outtake from The Guild shows Tinkerballa having trouble with the word "women". After about five takes she finally replaces it with "girls".
- Dragon Ball Abridged, when Vegeta must do something anathema to his character:
Vegeta: I need your hehh… I need your heehhHhH…
Gohan: You need our help?
Vegeta: That. Yes.
- Named for the famous Looney Tunes character Porky Pig, for whom this was a huge part of his schtick:
"Hello, Mr. Schles— Mr. Schles— Hello Leon!"
"What ridiculous histrioni-ni-ni— h-h-histrioni-ni— what ridiculous acting!"
"Keep away from that masked d-d-d-desperad-d-d-d-... that masked stinker!"
- That was apparently a gag reel never intended for public release.
- Daffy Duck did this in one short where he had the hiccups:
"A doc-(hic), a doc-(hic), a doc-(hic)...a physician!"
- The Mighty Ducks does this sometimes with Tanya, the resident Gadgeteer Genius, who has a tendency to think faster than she can speak.
- The Giant in the Disney short Mickey And The Beanstalk can't pronounce "pistachio" right. He eventually settles for "green gravy".
- Ms. Li, from Daria, during loooong negotiations: "Don't think you can intimiate... intermolate... don't think you can scare me with your threat to picket naked!"
- In South Park episode "Crippled Summer", one of the handicapped kids was molded after and spoke like Porky Pig.
- Parodied in an episode of The Simpsons when Homer blames Marge for the car accident while intoxicated she says "Oh my god I'm going to be incarc-(hic), incarc-(hic), incarc-(hic), I'm going to jail."
- Also, Kent Brockman notes there has been a major accident in Kualall- Kulolummo- Kulallulla- ... then crosses out his script and replaces it by France.
- Boris Badinov once used this:
Boris (disguised in a lab coat):: I'm a physis—physi—phy—I'm a druggist.
- An inversion in Back at the Barnyard:
Freddy: A gh-g-g-gh-g-gh-gh-apparition!"
- Coiffio does this in the first episode of Perfect Hair Forever.
- Disney's ''Alice in Wonderland, when the Caterpillar asks Alice "exacatically" what her problem is.
Alice: Well it's exactiticly...exacita...well, it's precisely this: I should like to be a little larger, sir.
- Done by Woody Woodpecker in The Cracked Nut.
Woody: Maybe I should see a psychi—psychai—psychai—(hic) go see a doctor.
- Sarah Palin's infamous Katie Couric interview: the Alaskan Governor tried to say "caricatured" but failed, and Couric suggested "Mocked"...you know, reporters?
- In Real Life, this can be a useful skill for people with speech impediments. Supposedly Jonathan Miller, who had a stammer, couldn't say the name of the street where he lived, so he'd get a bus ticket to the nearest one that he could say and walk back. And David Sedaris has an essay about how as a kid he developed a wide vocabulary of words with no S's or soft C's to avoid acknowledging to his speech therapist that he had a lisp.
- A lot of people who try to say "methamphetamine" end up saying "crystal meth" instead.