"Flipping the Bird", or "the Finger" as it is also known (among other names), is the act of raising one's middle finger upwards while keeping the rest of the fingers bent at the first joint or curled tight into the palm of the hand. For added expression, the participant should extend the arm to its full length and raise slightly above the shoulder line, perform this movement in a one sharp movement to add complete indignation to the gesture. Its name comes from the way the hand forms the shape of an upward-turned bird, but its obscenity comes from the way it resembles a phallus. For added effect, one can Dual Wield the gesture in what is sometimes called the "Double Deuce." Alternatively, it can be further emphasized by simultaneously slapping the other hand into the bicep, against the elbow joint.
To flip someone off is an insult in most of the Western World, and earliest references of it go all the way to Ancient Greek and Roman writings, where it is referred to as digitus impudicus (the "impudent digit"). Often directed to those in authority in an act of defiance, Flipping The Bird is an easy way to get across complicated emotions in one motion. Also used occasionally by people who are being photographed against their will, and want to ensure the resulting image won't be publishable. Frequently used toward another driver while at the wheel.
A known British variation of the gesture is the "two-finger salute," where the index finger is also raised, otherwise known as "making a V-sign." Distinguished from the (inoffensive) "victory"/"peace" V-Sign by the palm facing inward, away from the target, much as it does for the single-finger equivalent. A popular but apocryphal story about the origin of this version of the gesture involves the 1415 Battle of Agincourt, where the French allegedly boasted they would cut off the bow-fingers of every English longbowman they captured. When the English soundly beat them, their archers supposedly held up their still-intact fingers at the French in defiance. Sometimes the story ends with them shouting "Pluck Yew!" as they did so, denoting what they could still do to their bows. Supposedly this became the familiar expletive now implied by the gesture.
A variety of other gestures are considered obscene in various cultures around the world. Notable gestures include "the fig,"note which is vulgar in France, Greece, and some Near East countries, the bras d'honneur or "arm of honor", note which is generally obscene where flipping the bird would be, and the "okay" gesture,note which is offensive in Turkey, Spain, and some South American countries.
Even in cartoons where characters have Four-Fingered Hands, it's still possible to flip the bird by singularly elevating the finger between the index and pinky fingers, which is still censored on local and regular cable television.
- In an ad for Wild Turkey Kentucky Bourbon, a group of guys are contemplating whether the woman at the end of the bar likes one of them, when suddenly she flips them off. Apparently not, right? Turns out, in this bar, the finger means "order that person a Wild Turkey on the rocks." As reflected in the tagline, "Give 'em the bird."
- Berserk: In volume 33, pirate Captain Bonebeard makes the mistake of attacking the Seahorse, the finest ship of the Iith navy commanded by the "Sailing prince of Eath" Roderick of Stauffen. As Bonebeard retreats with his tail between his legs, the cheeky Isidro sees him off with a combined Bicep-Polishing Gesture and middle-finger-salute, shouting "I hope a shark bites your ass!"
- JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Jolyne Kujo can do this in several different languages.
- In episode 9 of TerraforMARS, Adolf delivers one to the Roaches, before raining thunder from above all while quoting epic Bible lines.
- Rock does this quite memorably in the second episode of Black Lagoon, flipping off the Extra Order mercs as he pulls his first Crowning Moment of Awesome by having the title ship launched off a ramp and the torpedoes launched to wipe out an attack chopper that was after them.
"You got FUCKED!"
- Juza the Cloud in Fist of the North Star does this to Raoh during his final encounter.
- In Fruits Basket, Haru does this to Kyo during their fight as he's saying "Go to hell!"
- In Ouran High School Host Club, the Hitachiin brothers do this rather frequently.
- Ranma ˝: Shows up a lot because it's a milder insult.
- In an episode, when they fight the Gambling King, the King uses it to punctuate his rant/challenge. Then it gets returned to him... by Akane, of all people.
- Akane did it also in another episode, to Ranma; while hitting her on the head with her Hyperspace Mallet at the same time.
- Ryōga also did it once when talking smack to Ranma.
- Then there was the time that Nabiki flipped off Sōun. Given that she usually does it with her index finger, this is a non-verbal Precision F-Strike on her part.
- And man, Ranma flips off people a lot in the manga.
- A truly epic one happens in the Martial Arts Dining arc when Ranma is stuck in an iron corset and accidentally turns into his boy side.
Sōun: You call yourself my future son?!
Ranma: (while flipping Sōun off) So yells my "dad," the little French maid!
- In One Piece, when Eustass Kid and Trafalgar Law (two of the "11 Supernovas", rookies with huge bounties, including Luffy and Zoro) meet, Kid insults Law, who casually flips him the bird in response. This gesture was omitted in the anime version, but Kid's reaction to it is retained.
- After the timeskip, Sanji does this to the crossdressers of Kamabakka Kingdom as a farewell.
- In the collisseum tournament, Sai does this to "Lucy" (a disguised Luffy).
- The gesture fits very well with Law's defiant personality. When he is about to be shot (again) by former mentor/current Arch-Enemy Doflamingo, the man offers to allow Law to die via the Ope-Ope Fruit's Dangerous Forbidden Technique in exchange for one wish. Law's response is to troll him by seemingly agreeing, then demanding the impossible such as the revival of Doflamingo's brother (who Law idolized) and licking the assholes of every single citizen of the country Doflamingo took over a decade prior (which, disregarding sanitary reasons, Doflamingo's pride would never allow), and then taunting him one last time by stating that he'll never beat the Straw Hats or get Caesar back. All of this was before Law gave him the finger as one final "screw you" to his former boss. The anime again omits the finger, in favor of a montage of the many "miracles" that the Straw Hats have accomplished up to that point, along with one last defiant stare.
- In the first chapter of Naruto, we're treated to a flashback panel where Naruto is giving The Double Deuce to Iruka.
- Hellsing: Jan Valentine enjoys this and does it to Integra just before he dies.
- Sanosuke from Rurouni Kenshin is another repeating offender.
- Dragon Ball:
- Bulma did this to Pilaf during an interrogation.
- Dragon Ball Z Vegeta does this to Krillin in one of the Frieza saga episodes.
- And at the end of the series, a very rude boy did this to 4 year old Pan when she accidentally bumped into him.
- Almost every character in DBZ flips the bird at least once... except Goku, who prefer more childish rude gestures like sticking his tongue out.
- Even Buu does it!
- There's also a chapter title page where half of the cast flips off Cell.
- In Dai no Daibouken, Flazzard makes this gesture to Marm before his first defeat.
- In Bleach Isshin simultaneously flips Aizen the bird and knocks him several city blocks back (it's unknown if some sort of hand gesture was necessary or if it was entirely because he felt like it).
- The manga features Grimmjow grinning madly while flipping off the reader.
- In an episode of the Slam Dunk anime (the scene exists in the manga, but the bird-flipping doesn't), after scoring a bucket through his own individualistic work, Rukawa tells the rest of the team (Akagi included) that he couldn't pass to anyone because they were shaking in their sneakers. Invariably, they all get pissed, and Mitsui flashes the middle finger at the "bastard freshman, trying to give me a lesson".
- In chapter 7 of Sensual Phrase Sakuya does this to spite his half brother Ralph, even saying "FUCK YOU!"
- Shows up in Mahou Sensei Negima!, where Chamo gives Fate the finger. Possibly. His super-deformed style makes it tough to tell, but that gesture probably fits the situation best.
- Becky from Pani Poni Dash! does this in the first episode. It wouldn't be as jarring if it weren't for the fact that she's an eleven-year-old teacher who did that to her students. She demanded respect as a teacher, and one of the students immediately smacks her on the head for being so disrespectful.
"Look, I don't care if you ask me questions, but please use your brain before you open your mouth. For the love of God, try to think of less boring things to ask. Understand, YOU *flips middle finger* LOW LIFEFORMS?!
- The Gunsmith Cats salute an annoying ATF agent this way as he leaves. As average residents of Chicago, it's reasonable.
- Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's: You'd think that a show about a Card Game wouldn't have this, but You'd be wrong◊. This tends to pop up when the Hero or Lancer sets up a comeback so awesome, there's no need to bring the flipped finger up.
- Early in Excel Saga, when Excel is in prison, another prisoner asks if there's anyone she likes. She attempts to give a shy thumbs-up of "yeah", but accidentally flips her new friend off on the first attempt.
- In YuYu Hakusho, Kuwabara begins bashing Yusuke in comparison to his spirit sword vs Yusuke's spirit gun saying the gun is weaker. Yusuke responds with "That depends on which finger I'm using" while flipping Kuwabara off clearly. This was edited out of the Toonami block version.
- Yusuke does it again to Team Toguro at the Dark Tournament.
- In an episode of Samurai Champloo called "Baseball Blues", a baseball team from America challenges Mugen and his friends to a baseball game, and a nasty fat player flips them off.
- At the start of the episode, when told his ship can't dock in Japan, the admiral of the American fleet announces "FUCK THEM!" (in English) while flipping the bird. It's pixellated.
- Episode 4 of Michiko & Hatchin: Michiko disses a stipper because the stripper's boobs have no bounce. According to Michiko, it must be because they're augmented. She finishes by flipping the (pixellated) bird.
- In the Lucky Channel portion of Lucky Star, Akira does this (though it's sort of hidden) when saying "It's irritating!" in a cheery voice about something Minoru had said.
- In episode 3 of Is This a Zombie?, Orito flips off Ayumu while challenging him to a round of bowling to see if he can start living in his house along with Yuu, Seraphim, and Haruna.
Orito: If I win, I'll start living in your house today!
Ayumu: I don't understand.
Orito: (gives the finger) Say your prayers!
- Gather 'round, kids, the Great Teacher Onizuka is going to teach you some sign language!
- Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt is full of it. Granted, it's not the worst thing in the show.
- In episode 14 of Chitose Get You!!, Chitose does this to her teacher, Fuji-Sensei.
- Mina from Dance in the Vampire Bund flips off Rozemann as he helplessly watches Akira rescue her from his castle.
- In Hunter × Hunter, Netero does this to the Chimera Ant King while unleashing his ultimate unavoidable attack "Zero Hand". It doesn't work.
- The British V sign makes an appearance in chapter 2 of Rosario + Vampire when Kurumu flips off Moka after hypnotizing Tsukune into calling her a bloodsucker to her face.
- Flame of Recca: Recca flips the bird at Kurei when Kurei gives Recca the option to surrender rather than fight. This causes a bit of a crisis for Joker when the extremely innocent and sheltered Meno asks him what the gesture means.
Joker (thinking): How am I supposed to explain F**K to someone like Meno? Recca, I hate you.
- Ghost in the Shell: Arise. Motoko is thrown across the room by a more powerful cyborg, with a broken finger landing in the 'bird' position.
- In The Legend of Black Heaven Watanabe hurts his middle finger causing him to involuntarily flip off a hulking black guy, triggering a chain of event that eventually led to his death.
- Ganta of Deadman Wonderland does this to the crowd in the Carnival Corpse battle after they demand that he finish Minatsuki, the opponent that he just defeated.
- In one installment of Star Trek: The Manga, the Enterprise is up against a squadron of space mechas. Kirk orders them to stand down, and the lead mecha flips him off. The significance of the gesture is, of course, lost on the alien observer on the bridge with Kirk.
Melkor: One? One what? What is it trying to say?
Kirk: It's a very old Earth gesture, Mr. Melkor...and it tells me a lot about who we're dealing with.
- Pop Team Epic: both Popuko and Pipimi make this gesture often. It's the manga's page picture for a reason.
- Russell Peters: "Ryan, go clean your room!" "FUCK YOU BITCH!"
- The Amazing Johnathan during one skit covered his hand with a kerchief and asked if a lady in the front row likes birds. When she answered yes, he whipped away and flipped her the bird. He did then proceed to recover his hand and make a bird appear... which he then promptly pummeled into a fistful of feathers.
- He also does the double bird after getting annoyed by the audience member he brought up on stage wasn't falling for his trick questions, then later shows off a device spanning the stage which is just a bunch of disembodied hands flipping the bird, then flips off the audience again after he pulls a Go Look at the Distraction by claiming David Copperfield was in the audience.
- Dane Cook discusses the finger. (From about 1:10 on - audio NSFW)
- One Peter Kay routine discussed the art of stealthily flipping someone off by pretending to scratch your face.
- Hellblazer: John Constantine (who used to be pictured above) knows the appropriate moment on the devil.
- However, after many issues since then, the Devil managed to give the finger back at John.
- Lula from the German comic Lula und Yankee does that at least once.
- Guy Gardner flips off Mr. Terrific and Martian Manhunter as his Power Ring flies to him and lands on his middle finger in Green Lantern: Rebirth. Word of God confirms it was intentional, as they were surprised that panel got approved.
- In Gold Digger, the universe's equivalent of Lara Croft accidentally unleashes a Sealed Evil in a Can, also getting the creature's mind in her head. To take it out, she gets down to its body, then gets it to look at her, thus forcing it to see itself through her eyes, and turning them both to stone. So she decides the last thing either of them will see is her flipping it off.
- Izabel throws one in Saga after one of her illusions frightens off some cultists.
- Hannah of Rat Queens uses the double version as she steps through a magic mirror at Mage University.
- As Dilbert author Scott Adams has noted, you can get away with a lot of things in comics if you do them off-panel, such as Alice's none-too-subtle pun concerning how many digits she expected her bonus to be as opposed to what she actually got:
Dilbert: How many digits?
Alice: I used one on each hand.
- From FoxTrot, Peter's pitching in a baseball game and looking at the catcher's signals:
Peter: Two fingers? Shake him off. Three fingers? Shake him off. Two fingers? Shake him off again. Three fingers? Shake him off again. One finger?... Hey, same to you, pal!
- Pearls Before Swine: In the strip for November 26, 2006, Pig tries doing Rat's variation on the peace sign, but Rat doesn't want Pig copying him and limits him to one finger, which results in Pig getting pummeled for unintentionally flipping off a large man.
- Not shown:
Jon: Garfield! Get your paw out of the cookie jar! (Jon then looks surprised) Who taught you that gesture?!
Garfield:: (off-panel) You, in the car, when you drive.
- In another strip, when Jon and Garfield go to a vacation on Guano-Guano island:
Jon: Look a native! Aloha, dude!
Native: (off-panel) Aloha this!
Jon: Uh, must be an obscure Guano-Guano greeting.
Garfield: No, I think that's pretty universal.
- Not shown:
- When Jeremy gets a cut on his middle finger, the nurse advises him to keep it elevated; she changes her mind when she starts hearing students proclaiming "Same to you, Duncan!" in the hallway.
- Jeremy decides to point out that Zuma (a member of the Posse) says all her sentences like questions. When Zuma gets offended, Jeremy claims he was just making an observation, causing Zuma (off-panel) to respond "Why don't you just observe this?"
- In Get Fuzzy, one storyline had an Antiques Roadshow-esque curator mistake Bucky's teddy bear, Smacky, for a rare Steiff teddy bear. When another curator later tells Bucky that Smacky is virtually worthless (on live TV), Bucky angrily responds "How about a birdie? I got a little birdie for you." as his paw is blurred. In the next strip, Rob's friend Joe wonders out loud how a cat with Four-Fingered Hands was able to give the Finger.
- With Strings Attached: Ringo does this after he puts Sarekyl in a tree, among other instances (both American and UK versions).
- Turnabout Storm: Gilda delivers some of these in her furious final rant towards Phoenix, effectively turning the courtroom's mood on its head. Considering she's part eagle, there's a good chance there's a pun in there somewhere.
- In No Gods, Only Guns, Mister Torgue takes this Up to Eleven by blowing up the top ten floors of his corporate headquarters on Illium and using mass effect fields to shape the explosion into a giant middle finger pointed at the Hyperion and Maliwan headquarters.
- Ebony from My Immortal does this in the first chapter when the "preps" stare at her, and several other times throughout the fic, including to Snape and Lupin after they are sent to "St. Mangos" for watching her in the bath.
- In the RWBY fic Wrath of the Scorned, Vlaknest psychically paralyzes Ruby Rose. Using all her strength, she manages to flip him off. He responds with Sarcastic Clapping.
- In Supergirl story Hellsister Trilogy, John Constantine delivers one to villain Drang after trapping him inside a magic circle.
The trenchcoated man stood, flipped the blue chalk back into his pocket, and crouched outside the circle to be on a level with Drang's eyes.
Then he flipped him the bird.
- In Those Who Stand for Nothing Fall for Anything Light flips off B after he gives him another of his infamous deconstructive psychoanalysis.
- In the Star Trek Parody Fic Farce Contact, Captain Kirk shows his contempt for temporal agent Daniels by flipping him the Great Bird of the Galaxy.
- Likewise in Next Week on Enterprise, Gene Roddenberry gets Thrown Out the Airlock, sparking a conflict with passing Tellarites who do not appreciate being given the Bird.
- The Bridge:
- When Gigan escapes from the Power Ponies world, he muses that he would flip the Mane-iac off if he had fingers.
- Xenilla taunts King Sombra with, "No words needed. I'd have a human gesture for you, but I don't have any fingers at the moment."
- In the spin-off The Bridge: Sound of Thunder, Raiga simply holds up her hoof, and Battra Lea instantly understands that she's flipping her off.
- In Movie Night At Freddy's, an animation goof within the movie causes Freddy to look like he's flipping the bird.
- Dragon Ball Z Abridged exploited the scene where Vegeta flips off one of Frieza's men, to no one's surprise
''Look at your men, now back to me, now look back at your men, BACK to me. I am not your man. I am flipping you off.
- In Episode 60 this is how Trunks and Vegeta say goodbye to each other. Never did a bird flip come across as so heartwarming.
- In Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series, when Joey notices Kaiba doing a Lying Finger Cross, he changes it to this.
- In Stars from Home, frequently. Usually done by Scott and Alex, and attributed to them if it isn't—Doug mimics Alex by doing this, and it's mentioned that Ororo learned it from Scott.
- In This Bites!, Cross does this to Van Augur from several miles away when his sniped seagulls land on the Merry. And he even manages to dodge the sniper's next bullet too.
- Cross does this to Robin when she asks him to help zip her up.
- During an encounter with an octopi kingdom, one of them gets mad at the Straw Hats and raises its tentacle. Vivi attempts to translate the sign language, but Cross tells her he can tell that gesture is universal.
- In Black Widow, Clint Barton/Hawkeye gives his middle finger to a protester for calling Natasha Romanov/Black Widow a whore.
- In a sidestory of Pokémon Reset Bloodlines, Drake, the Orange Crew Head Gym Leader, worried about his undefeated streak being eventually broken, visits Shalour City seeking Gurkinn for some help. Ultimately, their conversation goes south and Drake leaves in a huff, pretending not to notice that his Dragonite gives the finger to the old man.
- Karui in Son of the Sannin does it to the crowd during the Chunin Exams finals in response to their booing after she defeats Choji.
- Shilo Wallace dual-wields two birds to her father to rebel in Repo! The Genetic Opera
- One of the earliest examples of this in a mainstream film would be The Miracle Woman, a Frank Capra drama made in 1931 (in other words, prior to the implementation of The Hays Code), which has a scene where the chauffeur of Barbara Stanwyck's title character does this to their boss.
- An even earlier example comes in Harold Lloyd's silent 1928 comedy Speedy, which has a scene where Lloyd does this to his own reflection in a funhouse mirror.
- Nothing Sacred uses this for a pretty amazing joke in 1937. Hazel is attending a fancy stage show where the performers are dressed like great women of history. One is Katinka, "the Dutch girl who stuck her finger in the dike." The MC urges the actress to "show them the finger, babe", and she shows her bandaged but definitely upraised middle finger.
- The page image comes from the final shot of Crank: High Voltage. As the caption says, main character Chev Chelios finally gets to return the favor after repeated occurrences of, "Fuck you, Chelios!"
- In a deleted scene in Avatar, Max Patel cheerfully flips the bird at Parker Selfridge, just before ripping through the command center's windows with a titanic slash cutter, letting in the rogue avatar team. Dileep Rao does get a second shot at bird-flipping villains before doing something awesome in Inception.
- In Highlander II: The Quickening, a random bar patron flips Connor off right before bashing him over the head with a bottle.
- In Ghost Rider, the titular hero escapes the cops by jumping off a bridge and into a river. He quickly flips them off as they look after him.
- In the movie My Science Project, one guy flips off an asshat honking at him from behind... with a light-up one!
- In Problem Child 2, Junior Healey is driving his dad home, and an unseen driver cuts him off. The kid knows how to make use of "the highway salute".
- In Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, Ace acts like enough of an asshole to one of the roster of the Miami Dolphins that the player flips him off in response. His reason for doing this is to get a good look at his championship ring, as he's trying to find one with a missing stone.
- In Aliens: (He is smoking at the time, which makes it hard to spot.)
Hudson: Man, this floor is freezing!
Apone: What do you want me to do? Fetch your slippers for you?
Hudson: Gee, would you, sir? I'd like that.
(Apone points at his own eye with his middle finger)
Apone: Look into my eye.
- A variation in Another Cinderella Story:
Natalia: (after throwing her coke on Mary) I am so sorry, Mary. I didn't even see you standing there. It's like you were totally invisible.
Tami: (shows her fist) Check out my totally invisible finger!
- Films 2 and 3 of the Austin Powers trilogy had examples of this, both of which involved Mini-Me.
- One of the aliens in Bad Taste does this on the movie poster. (Peter Jackson, you mad genius you.)
- Blade: Trinity. Vampires clad in full-body protective gear enter a tomb in the desert. Before going in, one of them flips the bird at the sun. 'Cause, y'know, it's not able to kill him for a change.
- Bring It On:
- The first film has two examples of this. The first one was when a Toros cheerleader flipped off her ex-boyfriend after they lost a game. The second had the main character's little brother doing it after being taunted for sneaking into the girl's locker room.
- Missy does one after a Toros cheerleader mockingly points out that tattoos aren't allowed. She rubs off the "tattoo" with her middle finger.
- Bruce Almighty: "Do you like jazz? I like jazz. I especially like the trumpet."
- In 8 Mile, Alex and B-Rabbit give each other the Finger cordially.
- Ash in Evil Dead 2 gets this from his own demon-possessed severed hand. This was parodied in Return of the Living Dead Part II at the end of the "zombie hand in the car" scene.
- In Tank Girl, the title heroine (played by Lori Petty) says this to the Head of Water and Power (Malcolm McDowell):
Rebecca: There is a great, big, humongous honking booger in your left nostril... I suggest you use this finger to get it out!
- The younger sister of the heroine in Final Destination 3 flashes the double-deuce when her big sister takes her picture at the amusement park.
- In Groundhog Day, in at least one loop, Phil does a countdown to filming on his fingers, the middle finger being used for "one".
- In Guardians of the Galaxy, Peter Quill jokingly does this, using the 'crank' method, to a couple of Nova Corps members through a window while he's being detained. In the trailers, it's lampshaded by being blurred a couple of seconds early with the words "OBSCENE GESTURE DETECTED" on the Nova Corps' HUD. In the theatrical release (which was rated PG-13), it goes completely uncensored.
- One character does this in Liar Liar.
Fletcher: (desperate to keep his secretary around) I'll give you the raise!
Gretta: Here's your raise! (flips it to him)
- Men in Black features Agent J (Will Smith) doing a similar obfuscated-flip, as Agent K (Tommy Lee Jones) responds to the younger agent's questions about advanced Men in Black privileges with "When you grow up." J replies with "Oh...okay", while scratching his head with his middle finger.
- In Bean, the biker gave the bird to Mr. Bean while taking a picture of him and giving him a thumbs up from the car. Unaware of the gesture, Mr. Bean gives the bird to everyone he passes by.
- The first movie of The Naked Gun series has a memorable scene where a driver instructor (played by John Houseman) deadpanly instructs his meek girl student, "All right, Stephanie, gently extend your arm. Extend your middle finger. Very good. Well done" in response to a fellow driver angry at her for driving the wrong way on a one-way street. The girl feels truly empowered after this.
- In one of the Police Academy movies, a snarky guy flips off a mounted police officer twice, once vertically and again horizontally (i.e. for the officer and the horse he rode in on).
- Road Trip had a blind girl giving Seann William Scott's character the bird after he feeds her seeing-eye dog a Slim Jim.
- In School of Rock, after finding out that he's being booted from his own band, Jack Black holds up three fingers. "Read between the lines, my friend."
- Barf does this at two guards when he and Lone Starr park at the Spaceball Prison Complex.
Guard: All right, hands up. You're under arrest for illegal parking!
- The titular villains use a slight variation of the bras d'honneur as a salute. Which means they greet their President (played by Mel Brooks) with an insult, which he then returns in kind.
- Barf does this at two guards when he and Lone Starr park at the Spaceball Prison Complex.
- Stand and Deliver: Chuco (a Maravilla gang member) does this to Escalante in an attempt to be clever. Escalante does him one better, showing him how to quickly multiply by nine on his fingers.
- Starman: Throughout the movie, the alien tries to learn human customs and sayings, and when to use them. At a gas station, he gives a trucker a thumbs up in the men's room and tells him to "take it easy," having learned the gesture from the station attendant. The trucker flips Starman off and says, "Up yours." Later in the movie, at the diner where Starman runs afoul of a group of hunters, Jenny chases them off with her pistol,helps him into her car, and fools the hunters into thinking she means to run them down. One of them yells out, "Take it easy!" Starman doesn't miss a beat and flips him off, "Up yours," as Jenny drives off.
- Top Gun had Maverick and Goose tell the story of when they "flipped the bird" at a Soviet pilot (at the beginning of the film). Maverick originally decides to refer to it euphemistically ("improving international relations") until Goose both explains and demonstrates the gesture by flipping off the officers holding the briefing.
- Tremors. The protagonists have decided to make a run for the bulldozer so they can make their escape, but they need something to distract the man-eating Graboids away from them. Melvin (an annoying minor character) is nearby.
Earl: Hey, Melvin, you wanna make a buck?
Melvin: Aww, eat it! [gives him The Finger]
- Undercover Brother. The title character and Sistah Girl are being chased by two security guards in golf carts. The guards try to warn some senior citizens (also in golf carts) to clear out of the way, and one elderly woman gives them The Finger.
- Roddy Piper does this in They Live as he lies dying, having exposed the true, unpleasant form of the aliens.
- 2012. Tamara does this to her now ex-boyfriend who had tried to leave her dead, as she climbs into a secret compartment of the ship, now leaving him for dead in return.
- X-Men Film Series:
- In X-Men, Wolverine flips Cyclops off with one of his claws during the climax.
- He also does it to Gambit in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
- In X2: X-Men United, Mystique flips off Stryker and his soldiers as she escapes them by sliding behind a locking gate.
- This is Deadpool's reaction to a motorcycled mook putting a bullet-hole into his arm.
- When he decides to cut his own wrist in order to escape from Colossus's manacle, Deadpool leaves his severed hand in a flipping-the-bird position as a parting gift to the X-Man.
- This is Deadpool's reaction to a motorcycled mook putting a bullet-hole into his arm.
- In Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, drummers seem to like this gesture.
- Kim flips off Gideon before the Sex Bob-Omb plays, and does it by using her middle finger to rub under her eye.
- Earlier before the Matthew Patel fight, the drummer flips Wallace off.
Wallace: (heckling) Is that girl a boy, too?
Crash: Yes. (drummer immediately flips the bird!)
- Cobra member Firefly from G.I. Joe: Retaliation flips both middle fingers after this line:
Zartan: (as the President of the United States) Ah, good to see we have the required crazy in this plan! So, you still have all 10 fingers?
Firefly: Sure do. (waves his fingers toward Zartan's face, then flips him off)
- In The Hangover, a little girl flips off Alan on the highway while the gang is on their way to Las Vegas.
- In RoboCop (1987), Robo himself offers a version of The Finger when a technician insists that Robocop is not allowed in the computer records room. Granted, it was only a data probe, but its position on Robocop's hand gives it a dual-purpose role.
- The Matrix:
- Agent Smith offers Neo a deal in the interrogation room scene:
Neo: Yeah. That sounds like a really good deal. But I got a better one. How about... I give you the finger... and you give me my phone call?
Agent Smith: Mr. Anderson... you disappoint me.
Neo: You can't scare me with this Gestapo crap. I know my rights. I want my phone call.
Agent Smith: Tell me, Mr. Anderson, (pause) what good is a phone call if you're unable to speak?
- In The Matrix Reloaded, The Architect's screens show every possible future. One screen depicts Neo flipping him off.
- Agent Smith offers Neo a deal in the interrogation room scene:
- In Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome Ironbar flashes one of these as he dies under the wreckage of his crashed car.
- The movie adaptation of Dragnet had an interrogated suspect flip off Friday and his partner, Pep Streebeck. Streebeck leaves to get coffee, Friday then teaches the thug a lesson in manners.
- Hot Fuzz: Nicholas Angel does the British variation, accompanied by a raspberry and the phrase "Jog on!" He picked it up from his partner Danny.
- In Star Trek IV, the punk on the bus gives Kirk the finger after Kirk asks him to turn down the music on his boombox... and gets a Vulcan Nerve Pinch for it — to the applause of the other passengers!
- Bialystock and Bloom in the latest The Producers respond this way while taking the Siegfried Oath (while Franz isn't looking).
- In Inception, Yusuf does this to a projection when he drives off the bridge to set off the kick in Fischer's first dream layer.
- In probably one of the more extreme moments of Getting Crap Past the Radar in children's television, Alec Baldwin does this while playing a character in Thomas and the Magic Railroad. Yes, you read that right.
- The South Korean King Kong rip-off, A.P.E. features a giant monkey giving the finger to an exploding helicopter. Seen here.
- And speaking of apes, in Cannonball Run II, an orangutan chauffeur gives an old lady one when she waves to him!
- Unintentionally in Rat Race, when Randy burns his finger in the cigarette lighter of Hitler's car and holds it up while next to a biker. His wife tries to explain while wagging hers. He next tries explaining the situation to World War II veterans.
- The poster for Trainspotting includes Begbie giving the V-sign to the viewer.
- In Ali G In Da House, Ali G thinks he's being rebellious by giving the V-sign to a cop car just below the rim of his car window, so it's completely hidden.
- In The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension, John Bigbooté flips off Dr. Emilio Lizardo behind his back.
- In the horror movie Vamp, the bloodsucking exotic dancer gives the hero the middle finger in a final act of defiance after being reduced to a skeleton by the light of the sun.
- The garden gnome in Project X has its middle finger raised.
- Street Fighter has Guile, talking to M. Bison on the news, signing off with the bras d'honneur (See Real Life, below), further emphasized with the American flag tattooed on his forearm.
- In Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare, when Freddy Krueger slices off his fingers one by one, he gives Doc the middle finger, noting that it's his favorite.
- In Queens Logic, a woman in her car does this to Al (Joe Mantegna), who's in the car next to hers, when he tries coming on to her. Al, of course, is turned on by this:
Al: Mean! Nasty! Mean and Nasty! I CAN WORK WITH THAT!
- In The War of the Roses, Barbara does a stealth flip to her husband at the dinner party while pinging a crystal glass.
- In War, Inc., some little boys set Hauser's truck on fire. As they run away, one of them flips him off.
- Cheech uses this as a Stealth Insult in Cheech and Chong's Next Movie. It's directed at a telephone. On the other end is his boss who's just fired him.
- In the 1985 action comedy Gotcha, the protagonist is leaving East Berlin only to be held up at Checkpoint Charlie by a gauntlet of Obstructive Bureaucrats. After a long delay...
Jonathan: Am I in West Berlin now?
American border guard: Sure.
Jonathan: (extends middle finger to DDR guard tower) FUCK YOU! (to American guard) Good night. (walks off)
- Rush is bookended by Niki Lauda flipping the bird to James Hunt. In the first case it's in anger over being called a chicken, in the second it could almost be considered affectionate, as James had just joked that Niki's burn scars made him look better and Niki's grinning as he does it.
- In the film version of Misery, after assorted traumas, Paul does this to Annie through a window. She laughs about him kidding around with her.
- Shoot 'em Up. Hertz tortures Mr Smith by breaking his trigger finger. He then demands to know where the Living MacGuffin is. Smith flips him the bird with his other hand.
Hertz: That's the last time you'll be doing that. (grabs middle finger and breaks it too)
- Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star: When the mother decides to make Dickie have cereal instead of coffee for breakfast, Dickie looks in, remarks that there's a surprise inside, reaches inside, and flips her the bird.
- Red 2. In a Car Chase through the streets of Paris, Sarah and Marvin are competing with Frank and Katya to catch a Knowledge Broker called The Frog, who's driving a stolen motorcycle. The Frog races down a narrow alley and when Sarah tries to follow her car gets stuck. The Frog stops and turns to flip them the "V" only to get hit by Frank and Katya in their car.
- The poster for Putney Swope depicts this, with a model representing the "finger".
- In One Crazy Summer, Hoops and his friends do this to Teddy and his sailing crew as they pass by him in their sailing ship refitted with part of Teddy's convertible as its outboard motor.
- In Short Circuit, Newton Crosby does this to his co-worker Benjamin Jubituya with his robotic hand. Benjamin asks Newton if he's showing the number of his IQ with that finger.
- Early in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, Clark has an on-the-road disagreement with a pickup truck, so as the truck passes alongside, he points the other way and says, "Look, a deer!" While everyone else is distracted, he gives the truck the Highway Salute. They don't take it well, and Hilarity Ensues.
- The Beverly Hillbillies movie: After a driver gives them the finger, the Clampetts mistake it as a show of how people in California say "howdy" and give it to others without knowing better.
- Retroactive: When Frank initially drives past Karen's broken vehicle, she gives him the clenched-fist salute. This starts the chain of events in the movie, as he would likely have just ignored her otherwise.
- Early in Robin Hood: Men in Tights, a prison guard lashes at the hands of prisoners reaching up through a floor grate. After he walks away, their hands pop back up to give him the 1-finger salute.
- Good Morning, Vietnam. Robin Williams' character teaches this trope to the Vietnamese taking his English class.
- Machete Kills. Luz is frozen by the Darth Vader Clone villain. When the slab of carbonite hits the ground a la Han Solo, her finger is frozen in the bird position.
- Paul Paul does while looking out the window in one scene.
- The original Shaft opens with John Shaft flipping the bird at a cab driver who's honking his horn at him and yelling "Up yours! Get out of the way!"
- In Titanic (1997), Rose gives the middle finger to Lovejoy. This led to some complaints of Anachronism Stew by viewers who thought the gesture wasn't in common use in 1912. As noted in the intro, however, it's actually Older Than Dirt.
- In The Car, a hitchhiker does this to the eponymous demonic vehicle after it swerves at him... it would be the last thing he would EVER do...
- In Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, CIA operative "Python" flips off his superiors via the camera on a drone passing him, after they launched it to blow up the compound of an African warlord, despite Python explaining that there is at least one civilian in the compound.
- In Zombieland, Tallahassee gives two aces to Wichita and Little Rock after they rob him at gunpoint, and later uses a dismembered hand to playfully flip off Columbus.
- Smokey and the Bandit: After Cledus is pulled over by a motorcycle cop, Bandit and Carrie rear back, screech to a halt in front of the cop, and Carrie gives the cop the finger.
- Kingsman: The Secret Service: Eggsy does a lot of this, both the middle finger and the British two-finger bird.
- Force 10 from Navarone: When Force Ten infiltrate a German base to steal explosives by posing as Wehrmacht soldiers, one of them is accosted by a German soldier. Since he doesn't actually speak German, he compromises by giving him the finger instead.
- In Revenge of the Pink Panther, Inspector Clouseau throws a bomb, injuring one of his disguise assistants. In a later scene, the assistant's hand is all bandaged up — except for the middle finger sticking out.
- Bullshot. During a WW1 air battle Captain Bullshot Crummond salutes his Worthy Opponent, only for the dastardly Hun to respond with what's described by the narrator as an "ancient Teutonic gesture".
- In Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, when the heroes infiltrate the Hive, they notice a security camera and Abigail defiantly flips it off. In response, Albert Wesker activates a Deadly Rotary Fan that sucks her in and shreds her to pieces.
- John Wick: Chapter 2. After carrying out an assassination, John Wick finds The Dragon of the man who hired him blocking his escape route. The Dragon is also The Speechless, so when Wick asks, "Loose ends?" she responds using sign language: "Just...One..." using the middle finger for the 1 while blowing him a kiss so it's this trope. Then her Redshirt Army attacks.
- Event Horizon. A shirtless Cooper offers Starck a cup of coffee.
Cooper: Want something hot and black inside you?
Starck flips him off
Cooper: Is that an offer?
Starck: It is not.
Cooper: Well, how 'bout some coffee, then?
- In Stealth, Gannon tries to take a picture of Wade while she is in a bikini. She gives him a double bird.
- Fanboys combines this with an Indy Hat Roll in a combo Homage to Harrison Ford's work for George Lucas. Hutch leaps through the closing blast-door-style hatch of Skywalker Ranch's memorabilia room, then reaches back through just before their diamond-shaped opening scissors shut to give the finger to Lucas's security guards.
- The novelization of Crimson Tide features a scene that probably should have made it into the movie. As USS Alabama leaves Puget Sound, Washington on the surface, Captain Ramsay observes that "Now is as good a time as any to wave goodbye to Ivan." Ramsay and the rest of the bridge watch immediately look straight up and flip the bird at the Russian surveillance satellite that they expect to be watching them. Ramsay then gives the order to clear the bridge and dive the boat.
- The original novella for The Running Man by Richard Bachman ends with the hero presenting the double-deuce to his enemy while performing a suicide attack via jumbo jet, aimed at his enemy's skyscraper headquarters. He had earlier flipped off the camera in an image used to present him to the viewing audience.
- Performed by a cleaning robot in The California Voodoo Game, in which the machine has been disguised as a cyborg octopus (long story) and sent to hinder S.J. Waters' crawl through a ventilation duct. The machine has no voice synthesizer, so the Game Master uses this robot's hologram-illusion tentacles to express its defiance after S.J. cripples it in hand-to-pincer combat.
- It's subtle, but a fantastic version appears in Matt Stover's Shatterpoint:
"I can read your mind," he said darkly. "You only have three ideas, and all of them are wrong."
Mace nipped up a thumb. "You think being armed and ruthless means you can do whatever you want." He folded his thumb and flipped up his forefinger. "You think nobody will stand up to you when they're naked." He folded that one again and flipped up the next. "And you think you're going to look inside my bag."
- And if one needs reminding, the character saying/doing this is played by Samuel L. Jackson.
- In Halo: Ghosts of Onyx Kelly flips off a Sentinel drone to distract it while her team sets up an attack.
- The V-sign is obliquely referred to in Harry Potter, where it is always referred to as an "obscene hand gesture" so as not to give the children any ideas.
- The most direct reference to it being the V-sign is in Half-Blood Prince, in which Mrs Weasley threatens to jinx Ron's fingers together if she sees him doing it again.
- This is almost certainly true in Britain; of course, given the worldwide release nature of the book and the Darker and Edgier tone of the later books, it's possible that Rowling (or at least the translators) purposely left the gesture up to interpretation so each country's readers could insert their own analogous gesture.
- The most direct reference to it being the V-sign is in Half-Blood Prince, in which Mrs Weasley threatens to jinx Ron's fingers together if she sees him doing it again.
- In The Reynard Cycle, Arcasian characters (especially the rougher sort) are described "flashing their fingers" when perturbed. It's highly implied that they are making the V-sign.
- In A Song of Ice and Fire, Arya lists a number of things she's learned in Braavos, including obscene gestures such as "the fig." Also shows up as a Fan Nickname for Littlefinger, dubbed "Middlefinger" for his undoubted Magnificent Bastard status.
- In Plum Spooky, Stephanie comments "getting and giving the finger is a way of life in Jersey". She does, however, find it a bit odd to be getting this gesture from a pet monkey she's babysitting.
- In The Boy Who Lost His Face by Louis Sachar, David, in the middle of helping a group of friends pull a prank on an elderly woman reputed to be a witch, flips her the bird. This results in the woman pronouncing a "curse" on David.
- In Ken Kesey's Sometimes a Great Notion, the protagonist displays his late father's amputated arm from a pole atop his house, with all the fingers save the middle one tied down, as a gesture of defiance against the union loggers with whom he's feuding.
- In Interesting Times, it is mentioned obliquely that the upturned middle finger is the gesture used in demon banishing spells, which Rincewind uses to test his control of an army of clay soldiers: "Seven thousand terracotta middle fingers stabbed toward the ceiling."
- In Dogbert's Clues for the Clueless, in which Dogbert offers his own unique take on manners in modern society, he claims that if someone cuts you off in traffic you have the right to run them off the road to their deaths. Illustrated by a little old lady slamming a guy off the road as he tries to cut her off. The little old lady then flips the bird, which is censored by Dogbert who says that it's still considered rude to make the "I'm Number One" gesture afterwards.
- In A Yellow Raft In Blue Water, it's Ellen DeMarco's response to one of the Bearpaw Lake workers faking a drowning so he could get her to do mouth-to-mouth on him.
- A few of Simon R. Green's novels feature supernaturally-inclined characters who, after others make the sign of the cross at them, respond non-verbally with "the sign of the extremely cross".
- In Myth-inc Link, Skeeve and his friends receive a Finger in the Mail from the Queen of Possiltum. Tananda deduces that it was sent as a message, along the lines of this trope.
- In Newsflesh, Shaun is rather prone to directing this gesture, single-handed or in stereo, at security cameras, while Becks tends to use it as a conversational response to Shaun. Maggie comments in her blog "I make the following statement, which comes from my heart, my soul, and my middle fingers", aimed at their adversaries.
- Near the end of Somewhither Ilya does it to the High Astrologer. In front of his boss, who is visibly amused.
- Mentioned in one Dave Barry column, about the hazards of driving with a small child who expects you to perform children's songs while driving with all the associated gestures:
But the worst song, from a driving standpoint, is Where is Thumbkin? This is the one where you sing about, and display one at a time, the various fingers on your hand: Thumbkin, Ring Man, Pointer, etc. As you can imagine, this can create misunderstandings in traffic when your fellow motorists see you holding up Tall Man. I live in Miami, a heavily armed area, and I'm concerned that one of these days, some stressed-out driver is going to see me displaying Tall Man, and he's going to respond with: Trigger Man.
- In the Amtrak Wars series, Steve Brickman demonstrates his Mute disguise by washing the bodypaint off his finger and raising it to be examined by the Shogun's herald, Toshiro Hase-Gawa. Given the Iron Master's taste for Cold-Blooded Torture, it's fortunate that Toshiro doesn't understand the meaning of the gesture.
- Journey to Chaos:
- Anuzat is the first person to make such a "rude gesture" in A Mage's Power. She does it to someone who calls her "Cactus Stinger".
- Looming Shadow
- During the sequel this gesture is used by Second Skeleton to show his distaste to others because he lacks both vocal cords and expressive facial muscles.
- When an ordercrafter was threatening Annala, Tasio appeared and waved to her. Then he retracted four of his fingers and waved to the ordercrafter. The ordercrafter backed down.
- In The Wise Man's Fear, Kvothe has been trying to connect with Tempi, a mercenary teammate from the Adem culture, whose language incorporates a lot of very specific and little-known hand gestures. The two stop at a tavern and accidentally start a bar fight, and one of the patrons makes a gesture "that you didn't need to be Adem to understand". Tempi makes short work of both the patron and their crew.
- Well, the equivalent in The Divine Comedy's medieval setting: One damned soul curses God and gives Him "the figs"note with both hands.
- Referenced in MythBusters. While testing the bouncing bullet myth (about a bullet that ricocheted in such a way that it killed the shooter), Adam and Jamie used a cardboard cutout of Jamie to represent the gunman/victim. One of the bullets they fired struck cutout!Jamie, in the words of the narrator, on the finger he "occasionally uses to advise fellow motorists".
- The Colbert Report's Stephen Colbert uses this a lot, although it's blurred out. He often uses the playground prank of shielding his middle finger from view while doing so, then pulling the shield away once he's lowered his finger to deny that he was ever doing it.
- There were several occasions on Dead Like Me where characters clearly gave someone else the finger, thanks to the fact that the show was aired on Showtime.
- One episode of Flight of the Conchords (possibly called "Racist", since it was the one about the racist shopkeeper) featured the band's American friend teaching them how to "flip the bird".
- Jewel Staite and Nathan Fillion of Firefly engaged in an ongoing competition of finding the most creative ways to flip each other the bird.
- One Seinfeld episode had George thinking that one of the waitresses at Monk's was giving him the finger as she handed him the bill.
- In another episode, Jerry talks about the gesture (and how ridiculous he thinks it is) in his stand-up routine, saying he would be more offended if somebody gave him "the toe."
- Whose Line Is It Anyway?:
- Brad Sherwood asks something like, "You wanna see me turn my hand all blurry?" He then makes The Finger, which, yes, gets censored by being blurred. Unusual for this show; usually they use a Censor Box.
- Another episode had Ryan accidentally banging his head, with Drew joking "How many fingers am I holding up?" Ryan replies with "How about me?", holding up just the one (censor box'd)
- There is also a Running Gag in which all the cast members give the director the finger.
- Done beautifully (if surreptitiously) by Glenn in The Thick of It: Julius asks him to hold up his fingers to count something and while he's talking, Glenn slowly lowers his fingers except for the middle one and keeps flipping the bird to Julius's face for a while.
- A promotional (we think) image for Babylon 5 has the cast flipping off the camera in costume, with Peter Jurasik (Londo) giving both barrels. It can usually be found as an Image Macro with a caption like "Babylon 5 agrees that you're a fucking idiot".
- According to Patricia Tallman in her book Pleasure Thresholds, it was a spontaneous reaction to being forced to do an unpaid cover shoot for TV Guide at the end of a long week.
- Roundhouse pulled one off in its episode about discrimination with the "Race Krispies" sketch. Self-censored (with a cardboard sign): "Hey four-eyes, how many fingers am I holding up?"
- There's an episode of Roseanne in which Leon starts making changes to the restaurant when Roseanne isn't there by persuading Nancy and Jackie agree on said changes. Nancy and Jackie inform Roseanne that they all voted in favor of uniforms and breakfast in her absence. Then...
Nancy: We also voted that the restaurant's official bird should be the toucan.
Roseanne: Would you like to see the bird I voted for? (she makes a gesture behind her hand that implies flipping the middle finger)
- There's also an entire episode based around kids giving the finger in their school picture, Becky among them. It turns out she didn't; it was the kid next to her and it happened to look like her hand. She just let everyone believe she did so she'd be popular.
- In Porridge Fletcher is reading off a list of the things he's learned from his time inside, counting them on fingers as he goes. He forgets to add the third finger until Mackay notices it.
Fletch: All right. I'll just tell him three things. One - bide your time. Two - keep your nose clean. And three - don't let the bastards grind you down.
- One imprisoned criminal on the short-lived series Hooperman goes the extra mile with this. He not only gives the title police detective the finger, he cuts it off and mails it to him.
- Lister and Rimmer give the V-sign a few times on Red Dwarf, and at one point a Skutter (cleaning robot) gives it to Rimmer, which is quite an accomplishment considering their claw only has three digits.
- Lister and the Cat treat Arnold to one in 'Better than Life', and Kryten (trying to figure out what he is after thinking he was in a Lotus-Eater Machine while actually being in one) speculates that he'd be the Badass Cop who'd give one to Da Chief.
- When Kryten is temporarily turned into a human and explains to his spare parts that they can't rotate out anymore his extra arm flips him the V.
- In Friends, Ross made an alternative gesture for the finger (banging his fists together) as a child so he could do it in front of his parents. Other members of the gang also started using it.
- Ben Stein would get away with this on his game show Win Ben Stein's Money, scratching his face with his middle finger in the direction of Jimmy Kimmel, whenever he said something humorously insulting to Stein.
- As mentioned above, Spike in Buffy the Vampire Slayer used the two-finger variant as an eloquent response to Xander's accusatory gesturing when they were struck speechless.
- And next season, that shot made it into the opening credits sequence.
- Spike pulled off the same gesture to Angel during a flashback to WWII in Season five of Angel, quipping "Heil Hitler".
- R. Lee Ermey on Mail Call said that the Marine salute done properly has the index finger and 'social finger' touching the brim of the cap.
- An episode of Are You Being Served? involved a few of the British reverse-V variant; it was described to prospective Japanese buyers of the store as the British Workers' Salute. They return the favour after Status Quo Is God is maintained from hijinks, apparently intentional.
- Another episode had the department demoted to working in the bargain basement (long story). When they arrived at work the next day, as they were supposed to arrive early to help move everything down, they instead all gave Mr. Rumbold the "V" salute and closed the lift.
- The opening credits of Blackadder Back & Forth show a member of the Blackadder clan as a World War II soldier flipping the bird to Winston Churchill in response to his V sign.
- In a flashback episode of My Name Is Earl where Earl is competing against his cousin Blake for Joy's affection.
Earl: Honey, this is for you (kisses his two fingers in Joy's direction). Blake, one of these two fingers is for you.
- David Letterman got away with it on his show; a guy wrote him a letter saying that he's hanging upside down, so Dave flipped him the bird upside-down.
- Which is a Bilingual Bonus for those who are from the Middle East who knows that middle finger pointed down means "impotent"!
- In The Wire, Bill Rawls is introduced by giving Jimmy McNulty an extended "Fuck you" speech while holding up a double deuce.
- How I Met Your Mother,
- Barney attempts to do this to Ted. Unfortunately, he's wearing a penguin costume at the time, so he refers to it at "flippering you off".
- Also implied (since Ted's telling the story to his kids) as giving the thumbs up.
- In another episode, Marshall (whose entire body is hurting from working out to much) holds up four fingers to Ted and asks Lily to help him fold down three of them.
- Done regularly by various people in The Office. Always pixellated out.
- In the Criminal Minds episode "Cold Comfort", Garcia is reading horoscopes and Prentiss declares that they are bullshit. Garcia mentions in the horoscope about bout "eliminating this cold front with a simple but affectionate gesture" and Prentiss replies with "I have a simple gesture" and flips them off (the camera angle changes for censorship purposes). The whole video can be seen here.
- Saturday Night Live
- In a "Mr. Robinson's Neighborhood" sketch, Mr. Robinson put on a puppet show, with finger puppets of poor black people imploring President Reagan to improve the economy. Before the show ended, the puppet on Mr. Robinson's ring finger stood alone, and exclaimed, "Mr. President, I think I speak for all black people!" The censors apparently wouldn't let Eddie Murphy chose the puppet on his middle finger, yet the pose still looks unmistakably like the bird.
- Also, during the "Celebrity Jeopardy" skits, Connery drew a picture of an extended middle finger for his Final Jeopardy answer.
- In Two and a Half Men, after coming home from the hospital, Alan tries to flip off Charlie after he makes a "I Told You So" comment, but can't since his hand in a cast.
Charlie: Aww... you wanna flip me the bird, but the poor little fellow can't fly.
- In another episode, Jake flipped off his teacher. Charlie decides to learn Jake various ways to covertly flip off people: itchy-eye (scratching your eye with your middle finger), "read between the lines" (also sticking up the ring and index fingers) and the cranker - flipping the bird slowly jack-in-the-box style. The latter lacks plausible deniability.
- In Stargate SG-1, Jack O'Neill told someone that his name was "spelled with two Ls!" while holding up three fingers.
- In the Farscape episode "Kansas," Chiana gets the idea that this gesture is a friendly greeting and shows it off to a few people.
- Japanese show Legal High in episode 3, when Machiko (someone who you'd least expect to do this), annoyed by the interviewers, stands up and gives one to their camera. Which by the end of the episode, is aired on TV (pixellatied).
- In an episode of ER, Doug Ross was treating a young man dying of cystic fibrosis who wanted to enact a DNR. Unfortunately, as he was not yet 18, Doug could not do this, and so, at his mother's bidding, intubated him against his will. As the kid is wheeled off to be admitted to the hospital, he gives Doug the finger in response to the latter's apologies. This was the first time this happened in the show's run, but it made sporadic appearances throughout—Romano flipped off his physical therapist in response to her questions about his motility, and a wrongly arrested, deaf patient flipped off the cops even as they apologized to him (aside from the fact that he was friends with the woman he was wrongly accused of attacking, it's implied the cops leaped to conclusions because she was white and he was black). The amused interpreter declared, "I don't think you need me to translate that one"
- Monday Mornings: One patient who was unresponsive and appeared dead reacted when Dr. Robidaux asked him to grab her hand. Dr. Tierney thought that was a reflex and asked him to hold up a finger. He did, and showed a sense of humour as well by holding up the middle finder to the amusement of the whole hospital.
- David Cross does this at the end of a Mr. Show sketch in which he's been fired (for the same actions which gets his co-workers promoted) at the camera, which links into the next sketch.
- It's a rare episode of The Young Ones when Vyvyan doesn't flip a V to Rick and/or Neil every other scene.
- 7th Heaven plays this for drama when Simon is caught flashing the gesture among a group of friends, and later Ruthie shows her mother. The actual fingers are obscured, but it's made clear which ones are being held up via slow-motion and a dramatic music sting.
- In The Big Bang Theory, Howard has "borrowed" a robotic arm from his lab and is using it to serve dinner, very slowly. When Sheldon makes a snarky comment:
Howard: Hey, Sheldon (types into the command console, and the robot raises two fingers)
Howard: No, not peace. Hang on... (types some more)
- In the Haven series finale "Forever", Duke Crocker returns as a ghost to assist his friends. When Dwight expresses doubts that it's really him, he gets annoyed and flips Dwight off.
- Person of Interest. In "B.S.O.D.", Root insults an omniscient AI with a raging God complex to its proverbial face. And then literally flips it off. The image is pixelated, but it's still glorious.
- In a sketch from Tim & Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! the band Pusswhip Banggang has a song titled "Flip You the Bird".
- Iron Fist: When Ward Meachum figures out that his father has been spying on him with cameras hidden in his office, he flips twin middle fingers and sweeps them randomly around the room. He later does the double deuce to the cameras in Dr. Edmonds' office after Harold has drugs planted in his car for the cops to find.
Foggy Nelson: So, you can see.Matt Murdock: That's not… You're not… Are you even listening to what I'm saying?Foggy Nelson: Yeah, "world on fire," I got it. But you can see! Right?Matt Murdock: Yeah, in a manner of speaking. But I—Foggy Nelson: No! No manner! [holds his middle finger to Matt's face] How many fingers am I holding up?Matt Murdock: [with a "Seriously?" look on his face] One.
- Foggy has found out Matt is the masked Devil of Hell's Kitchen and is not too happy about it. At one point, Matt tries to explain how the world looks through his eyes.
Grotto: [chuckles] I'll take it.
- Grotto is being suited up for a police sting. Before he goes out, he asks Karen for a good luck kiss. Karen gives him a middle finger.
- Kevin Rudolf's "Let It Rock":
Now the son's disgraced, he who knew his father.When he cursed his name, turned and chased the dollar.But it broke his heart so he stuck his middle fingerto the world, to the world, to the world.
- "American Recordings and Johnny Cash would like to acknowledge◊ the Nashville music establishment and country radio for your support."
- In "Born To Lose", the Great Luke Ski recommends that the Charlie Browns of the world do this to Lucy when she pulls the football away.
- "The Way I Am."
And all of this controversy circles me
And it seems like the media immediately points a finger at me
So I point one back at them
But not the index, or pinkie, or the ring, or the thumb;
It's the one you put up
When you don't give a fuck and you just won't put up
With the bullshit they pull, cause they full of shit too...
- And again, more blatantly, in "The Real Slim Shady"...
So would the real shady please stand up
and put one of those fingers on each hand up...
- "The Way I Am."
- In a World War II propaganda musical short, Spike Jones and His City Slickers sing "Der Fuhrer's Face": "Ve Heil! Heil! Right in Der Fuehrer's Face." The heil gestures are accompanied by the middle finger. The palm was facing outwards, but the gesture was just as rude.
- "The One in the Middle" by Country Music singer Sarah Johns:
I would've given you the finger on my left hand
The one you use for a wedding band
But now I'm giving you the one in the middle
The one that's a little bit longer
And I've got another one on my other hand
So I can say it even stronger...
- Kid Rock's trope page includes a photo of him doing this.
- The cover art of !!!Fuck You!!! by Overkill.
- The album Nevermind by Nirvana contains a photography of Kurt Cobain doing this.
- Cobra Starship's "Middle Finger". It's exactly what you think it's about.
- Chely Wright's "The Bumper of My SUV" is about the narrator getting the finger by a driver who opposes her Marines bumper sticker.
- The Peter Alsop song "It's Only A Wee-Wee, So What's The Big Deal?" has a woman do this to some boys this during the "special adult verse", who mistake the gesture for one meaning "penis".
- Jo Dee Messina's "Peace Sign":
I'm not coming undone
I've got nothing but love
You put the FU in fun, it's all good
I'm not trying to fight
I'm not wasting my time
I'm just saying goodbye
One finger shy of the Peace Sign
- The cover of Anders Osborne's Peace shows a little girl doing this.
- In a Capitol Steps routine, there's an announcement that henceforth, "The New York State Bird will no longer be a hand gesture."
- Blake Shelton mentions getting the finger from an angry driver in "Some Beach".
- Shellac, "The Bird is the Most Popular Finger" (1994).
- "Weird Al" Yankovic:
- In the video "White & Nerdy" the black gangstas he wishes to hang out with give him the finger (although it is blurred out for censorship reasons).
- He does it himself in the video for "Amish Paradise" (and, like in "White & Nerdy," is also blurred out for censorship reasons).
- Mentioned in "Piece of Me" by Britney Spears (and shown in the video).
- In the music video of "Calfornia Gurls" a gummy bear of all things gives Katy Perry the finger though censored.
- "The Clash" by Backyard Babies has an amusing video trick: the finger ends in the guitarist.
- Taking Madusa by the hair, Sherri Martel flipped off the crowd before delivering a fatal knee shot. This was late in her AWA reign.
- It's first appearance on WWF TV was with the Mountie being ordered to provide his fingerprints after losing to the Big Boss Man at Summerslam 91. "You want the finger? THERE'S the Finger"!
- Diesel after costing The Undertaker the title at Royal Rumble 1996, which was notably before the Attitude Era.
- "Stone Cold" Steve Austin's "Stone Cold Salute" in the WWE. As famous as any other gesture (Diamond Dallas Page's "BANG!", the New World Order's "4 life", the Wolfpac symbol, "Suck it!", etc.), Austin literally gets over with the audience by telling them to screw themselves on live television (and they happily do it back to him in support).
- Vince McMahon does this a lot.
- He was idiotic enough to flip off The Undertaker and Kane once. They broke his leg.
- During a Steel Cage Match against SCSA, Austin nearly escaped twice. Vince flipped him off both times to enrage him into coming back.
- After being defeated by Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania 22, Vince was loaded onto a stretcher and wheeled away. Vince defiantly flipped Shawn off right before he disappeared.
- He did the same thing after losing to Hulk Hogan at WrestleMania 19.
- Antonio Banks's catchphrase was "Read Between The Lines!", which he usually said while holding up three fingers.
- Mr. America flipped off Vince McMahon in the middle of their arm-wrestling match.
- During their 2003 Iron Man Match, Brock Lesnar tried to call for a time out, only for Kurt Angle to give him the double bird and keep attacking him.
- At Summerslam 2004, a man in the audience flipped off The Undertaker during his entrance.
- Upon elimination from the 2004 WWE Diva Search, Maria gave the finger to Carmella.
- At Judgement Day 2005, JBL flipped off John Cena. Following his victory over Matt Hardy at Armageddon 2005, JBL flipped off the referee and the audience.
- Ric Flair flipped off Triple H at Survivor Series 2005.
- After revealing she had Aja Kong in her corner at ZERO1 Celebration Return in Zeros, Amazing Kong gave Team SUN the double bird.
- At the 2007 Turning Point James Storm put perennial baby face Eric Young in a Fujiwara arm bar and then forced Young to flip off his own fans.
- At Victory Road 2008, Samoa Joe flipped off Sting.
- A Getting Crap Past the Radar example. Since mid-2012, Christopher Daniels has adopted the tendency to tape his fingers in black and show the hand off to the crowd, but not his thumb and middle fingers.
- Randy Orton flipped off Seth Rollins after turning on him in March 2015.
- At Summerslam 2015, Brock Lesnar flipped off The Undertaker right before he passed out from Undertaker's hold.
- During Progress Wrestling Chapter Twenty-Four: Hit The North!, El Ligero threw his cape at co-owner Jon Briley during The Origin’s entrance. Jon responded by silently flipping him off.
- Whenever Paul Robinson enters, the majority of the crowd will do this.
- Jimmy Havoc did this a lot as well.
- At SHIMMER Volume 80, Cheerleader Melissa smiled and waved to the crowd while holding Candice LeRae in a kondo clutch, so more eyes would be looking when she flipped them off. Being more "family friendly" than most of the other shows running in Dallas that weekend, it was met with gasps and admonitions of "that's not nice".
- At the 2016 Aftershock Kenny King ducked under the ropes to high five all his "fans" after knocking over Will Ferrara but aside from those he had hired he pulled away just within arms reach to give them something else.
Matt Taven:"I'm pretty sure he told that kid in the front row he's number one twice."
- Cyclist Mark Cavendish gave us this post-win British variant◊.
- A 1972 Monday Night Football game between the Oakland Raiders and Houston Oilers had an incident in which ABC cameras caught several Oilers fans leaving (the putrid Oilers were losing badly to then-AFC powerhouse Oakland). One guy that stayed happened to be caught on camera and, seemingly aware of it, raised the middle digit. This incident also provided commentator Don Meredith's "We're number 1 in the nation" quip.
- Bud Adams, longtime owner of the Tennessee Titans (and formerly a Houston/Tennessee Oilers) was caught on camera shooting off repeated birds at the other press box - probably at old American Football League rival, Bills' owner Ralph Wilson... with Commissioner Roger Goodell in Adams' press box watching him. Whether this is an example of Brass Balls or What an Idiot! (or both) depends on your point of view. Given the fact that Adams was 86 at the time, it might have been a case of just not caring.
- Michael Vick actually got in quite a bit of trouble for throwing up a double deuce to a fan in 2006. Of course, the $20,000 fine he paid and the media savaging was only a warm-up act compared to what happened to him the following offseason...
- Has cropped up a couple of times in NASCAR. One was in Dale Earnhardt's last race, done rather like an irate driver in traffic (which, in a way, he was), on Kurt Busch. Mike Joy interpreted it as Earnhardt telling Busch, "Kurt, you're number one."
- Then, in the 07 November 2010 race at Texas, Kyle Busch did this to a NASCAR official who was enforcing a penalty on him. One (lap penalty) plus one (finger raised) equalled three (lap penalty).
- Formula One had a few infamous cases. Heinz-Harald Fretzen did it to Mark Blundell after passing him, and his finger itself was caught on the on-car camera. Johnny Herbert did one on the podium◊.
- During a 1992 race in the British Touring Car Championship, 2nd placed John Cleland let leader Steve Soper know exactly what he thought of him, right as the feed cut to his on-board camera. How did the BBC deal with this? Murray Walker, it's over to you!.
- During Game 4 of the 2011 Stanley Cup playoffs between the Boston Bruins and the Montreal Canadiens, which took place in Montreal, Andrew Ference of the Bruins let the Habs fans have it by flipping them off after scoring Boston's second goal in the second period. Since this was a matchup between two hated rivals trying to gun their way for the Cup, it is a classic case of Take That! to the Montreal fans. Needless to say, the fans got pissed off and Ference would later be fined $2500 for the unsportsmanlike gesture. The funny irony here is that Ference himself is born a Canadian (he's from Edmonton).
- The grand old all-American pastime of baseball isn't immune to the finger, either. Here's an article detailing the gesture's, er, singular history in the sport.
- In Indy Car, at the 2011 New Hampshire Indy 225, a very unpopular decision to restart the race under wet conditions resulted in a crash which took Will Power out of the race. He gave both barrels to the race officials in response. He got a lot of support after that (and his team owner even paid the fine Power was given for the birds).
- During the 2001 Japanese Motorcycle Grand Prix, which was held in Suzuka Circuit, rising motorcycle phenom Valentino Rossi flipped the bird to then-rival Max Biaggi after the latter attempted to force a bike crash on him by forcing him off the gravel. Rossi was mentally disoriented by this interference, but eventually he caught up to his rival and then flashed the gesture as a Take That! for cutting him off.
- Johnny Manziel flipped off the Redskins' bench during a pre-season game in his rookie year.
- Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy once flipped the bird at a linesman after a blown call.
- German midfielder Stefan Effenberg showed his middle finger to jeering fans while being subbed off in the 1994 FIFA World Cup. He was then banned from the German National team for life.
- The Angry Marines (probably NSFW), one of the many Warhammer 40,000 memes, do this all the time to everything and everyone. Just look at the first image.
- The page image for Psionics: The Next Stage in Human Evolution (which is also the book's back cover image) depicts a pyrokinetic flipping the bird while blowing up a car.
- A captured esper flips double birds at a Shop agent in one of the book's short stories.
- The singer of Tomorrow's Starlight is depicted flipping off a crowd with both hands.
- One character gets flipped off by his dead friend.
- Realms of Arcania has a stealth version, at least in the German original. There is an Assassins Guild called the Fellowship of Tsa's Second Finger * . People easily disregard the fact, thet when you talk of fingers, the thumb doesn't necessarily count.
- In productions of the musical Spring Awakening, the final poses of "Totally Fucked" usually involve several characters flipping the bird.
- One way to get points in Aaaaa A Aaaa AA Aaa AAA Aa AAAAAA Reckless Disregard For Gravityfa is to do this to as many protesters as possible. Yeah, it's that kind of game.
- In World of Warcraft, male Worgen do the two-fingered variant as their "rude" emote, probably thanks to their British accents.
- In Escape from Monkey Island, if you have Guybrush examine the appropriate part of the hand-shaped table in the Voodoo Lady's home, he'll remark "Ah, the middle finger. The most communicative of fingers."
- The "Sweet Goodbye" achievement in Mirror's Edge. This is achieved by jumping forward, doing a 180 degree turn while in the air and then pressing the attack button in quick succession. This will make Faith flash a V-sign while falling backwards.
- Your character can do this in Fable, and in Fable II you can have a sculptor make statues of you doing it.
- If you fail the extended expression in the second one you end up poking yourself in the eye.
- The "final trailer" for Duke Nukem Forever showed Duke flipping off a big alien spaceship.
- While in the game itself you do this after defeating a couple of bosses. Most notably would be when he finishes off the 'Queen Bitch' and just before losing consciousness, flips her off.
- The player's farewell to Nines Rodriguez in the Independent ending of Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines.
- Quest for Glory II has this as an example of Developers' Foresight, where one can actually use the command "give Ferrari the bird".
- Jak and Daxter:
- Daxter gives this to Pecker in Jak 3: Wastelander after yet another argument between the two, right in front of Jak, the king of Spargus, and an audience (who all gasp in unison). It was censored by showing it off-screen.
- In Jak X Combat Racing Pecker gives one to G. T. Blitz, this time censored by Pixellation (justified since it happens on TV).
- Meat Boy: Dr. Fetus does this pose in the opening video, on the pause screens, and the Dark World loading screen.
- Nero flips off Dante in Devil May Cry 4 as he's being absorbed by a huge, animated stone giant.
- Dm C Devil May Cry's Dante does this before his infamous showdown with Bob Barbas.
"Hey Bob! Put a spin on this."
- BloodRayne does this after killing Wulf and Beliar before giving them the double bird in the second to last cutscene, then gives the finger to Severin when he tells her to try and keep it quiet while on their mission.
- Guilty Gear Sol: Badguy does this as the Respect variation of his taunt, surprisingly enough. International versions censor this to a thumbs-up, making the taunt more "respectful", in a sense. (Ironic, considering that thumbs-up can definitely also mean "up yours" in certain cultures.)
- In zOMG!, the Taunt ring draws aggro from nearby Animated. You flip one bird with three Rage Ranks, and you flip 'em both when you use full Rage. In both cases, the relevant fingers are blurred.
- WWE wrestling games naturally have this as an option for taunts.
- Paulie 'Wheels of Fury' Ryan salutes the Player Character this way when teams are chosen in Tony Hawk's Underground 2. It's blurred out, though, because the game's rated T.
- Jack Cayman of MadWorld has a variation of this, though he replaces "Middle Finger" with "Chainsaw from his arm".
- In Ace Attorney Turner Grey flips off the player when he pushes up his glasses in his normal pose. In Japan though, it's not offensive, though it was overlooked in the American translation.
- Bayonetta has a blink and you'll miss it moment where she flips off some angel that had just destroyed the road and then uses the finger as an ignition key for a motorbike.
- In Gears of War 3 Cole asks politely if one of the stranded have a vessel they could borrow, the response; "Here are the keys to my luxury yacht" while giving him to finger.
- In Battlefield 3 you have to perform a quicktime event to kill a rat. If you fail, the rat makes enough noise to interest a guard, who then comes over and shoots you. As your character dies, he manages to flip off the rat.
- In The Darkness 2, if you shoot the car coming at you during the scene in the parking garage it explodes, and Jackie does this to the driver as he passes overhead before crashing into the wall and dying. You even get the achievement "The Bird is the Word" for pulling this (easy) stunt off.
- Done by a Headbanger to a group of Hairbangers in Brütal Legend after he and his friends join Eddie. IF you have the language censor on, it's covered by a big PMRC sticker.
- Later done by Eddie to Doviculus when he attacks his living castle, twice, both times coupled with an And This Is for...:
(after attacking one of the towers) That one was for Ophelia! (flips Doviculus off with one hand)(after attacking the other tower) And that one was for Lars! (flips Doviculus off with both hands)
- Later done by Eddie to Doviculus when he attacks his living castle, twice, both times coupled with an And This Is for...:
- In Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Todd does this a lot - even in the pre-fight closeup. Kim does this as well, but only if her hand is behind another character's head; if she's the only player, the expression becomes a thumbs-down.
- In Borderlands, Mordecai does this in the introduction after Marcus says he looks like a "Truxican wrestler moonlighting as a dominatrix".
- In Borderlands 2, Salvador's taunt skill "Come At Me, Bro" has him pull off a double deuce at the enemy.
- Pokémon Black 2 and White 2: Not in the game itself, but early concept art for Roxie showed her using her middle finger to do a Eyelid Pull Taunt. Evidently, another member of the art team realized this and had it changed to something completely different.
- In Tales of Xillia, Agria gleefully does this to Leia as she falls to her doom after rejecting the latter's attempt to save her. Though only in the Japanese version of the game.
- Brutal Doom, a game mod for the classic Doom games, gives players the ability to flip off anything with a simple push of the F key by default. Flipping off the Cyberdemon isn't a great idea, however...
- Lollipop Chainsaw: At the end of the fight with the first boss, Zed, Juliet cuts off his hand, which lands in the appropriate position.
- In what may be the best possible encapsulation of her character, Mariska gives Juliet the finger, and then turns her hand around into a peace sign.
- The Nerd does this a lot in promo images for The Angry Video Game Nerd Adventures.
- Saints Row: A selectable taunt for The Boss.
- Grand Theft Auto V: You can do this in place of being armed while inside vehicles by pressing the Shoot button. It is also a selectable taunt when playing GTA Online.
- Slapping the Bile Demon in Dungeon Keeper will cause him to do the British version of this (the V with the palm facing away from the person)
- In Surgeon Simulator 2013 you control a seemingly disembodied hand and are given the ability to control each individual finger. Obviously, flipping the bird is what most players do at one point or another. There's even an achievement for that.
- Of all games, Super Smash Bros. Brawl has Wolf flipping off the camera in his intro when you fight him in Adventure Mode.
- Rex can do this in Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon by pressing the melee button without any enemies in range. He can even alternate hands if you do it fast enough.
- Ellie does this to Bill in The Last of Us when he scolds her for messing with his magazine pile.
- Pedestrians can do this in Infamous to Cole if they hate him or thieves that they hang with a rope by their feet which he can free.
- Anthony Williams from Bad Day LA does this to some rude drivers on the highway he's trying to collect food on.
- Bloodwings: Pumpkinhead's Revenge: It's possible to defeat Pumpkinhead (who is a One-Hit Kill boss) through brute force in the final stage and ignore the puzzle completely. If you manage this, you get a cinematic where he gives you the finger instead.
- Choking Hands in Blood II: The Chosen flip you off when they see you. Every time. Even if you just hide around a corner and pop out again before the animation cycle from when they flipped you off previously is done. Considering these hands are autonomous zombified body parts enchanted by what is essentially a Satanic cult, it's pretty funny.
- Can be done in LittleBigPlanet 2 and LittleBigPlanet 3:
- In the second game, in the level "Pipe Dreams" in the Factory of a Better Tomorrow, there's a moment where you have to pull levers to move fingers on a hand to form the hand that rockers use. However, you can also choose to put up just the middle finger, which will cause a sign that reads "Denied" to cover the offending finger until you put up another finger or take the middle one down.
- In the "The Journey Home" level kit in the third game, one of the levels is based on the Factory of a Better Tomorrow, and the hand from the above paragraph makes a reappearance in a 2-player section. You have to put the pinky and index fingers in the same position that you had to in the second game, but you can also just put up the middle finger again, causing another "Denied" sign to come down and Clive to say "Nice try. We have policies against that."
- Postal 2 has NPCs do this on occasion when annoyed, whether at you or another NPC. The Paradise Lost DLC allows you to do it, too, by pressing the button normally used to shout at people to get down without a weapon equipped.
- Rock Star Ate My Hamster has a hardcore rocker giving his best middle-finger salute on the title screen of the ZX Spectrum version.
- South Park: The Fractured but Whole has a few aggro control moves, some of which involve this. Craig's Shining Hate Finger has him flip off a single target, while the New Kid's "Dragon Swagger" summons a spirit dragon that flips off everyone with both claws.
- Homestar Runner: In the Strong Bad Email "the bird", Strong Bad is fond of giving people the two-handed "double deuce"... despite having boxing gloves for hands. Pom Pom likes the "single deuce". And then Homestar Runner manages to flip Strong Bad the bird without any arms. Unknowingly, at that!
- B-14 does this to Little Prolie in Lucky Day Forever
- In the Team Service Announcement Pop it, Don't Drop it, The Medic of Team Fortress 2 survives an ambush by the entire RED team, by using his Ubercharge just in time. How does he celebrate his survival? By flipping them off. With both hands. While wearing sunglasses. Surrounded by dancing Scouts and Heavies. While "Dreaming a Dream" by Captain Jack plays. This pose was later modded as a taunt to replace the "Meet the Medic" taunt. It got so popular that Valve actually increased the price of the MtM taunt because so many people were buying it to replace it.
- In one episode of If the Emperor Had a Text-to-Speech Device the Emperor shapes the Astronomicon, the massive psychic beacon powered by the daily sacrifice of a thousand screaming psychic children that guides every ship of the Imperium, to flip the bird.
- Mokey's Show: In the Halloween Episode, Mokey does this to Mommy when she tells him and his friends that they're too old to go trick-or-treating.
Mokey: Mommy? I think you are blind.
Mommy: BLIND?! I am not blind Mokey!
Mokey: Yes you are, Mommy. You can't see.
Mommy: SEE?!?! SEE WHAT MOKEY?!
Mokey: (flipping the bird) THIS, BETCH!!!
- The Order of the Stick:
Roy: Is he flipping me off as he floats gently down to the ground?Elan: Belkar, that's the wrong kind of bird! That one can't fly!
- Vaarsuvius uses the spell "Bugsby's Expressive Single Digit" to flip off Qarr off-panel.
- And Xykon's "Hey, I just grew back a finger. Guess which one."
- Also, Illusory Belkar combines this with a Narrative Profanity Filter: "Forceful assertion of open resentment toward authority. Please view accompanying hand gesture."
- The real Belkar finally gets to do it off screen to Roy and Elan.
- The Poke the Poodle page caption features Tycho from Penny Arcade doing this at a box of kittens.
- In Schlock Mercenary, after taking an arm from the Creeth Ambassador...
Ennesby: I learned this one from a documentary about twentieth-century traffic signals.(A CENSORED sign is seen over the hand.)
Kevyn: I believe my line here would be "Is that your age or your IQ?"
- Kevyn responds, thusly...
- And it gets implied later!
- This Basic Instructions strip.
- This Fuzzy Knights strip (click to page through it), which was posted as a response to the 2005 terrorist bombings on the London Underground and made rather appropriate reference to the origin myth.
- In Blip, as K is considering what picture to use for her myspace profile, she realizes that every digital photo she has involves her flipping off the camera. Even the picture where she's nearly unconscious. "Why am I giving the finger all the time?"
- Implied in Freefall to be what everyone does when they "interact" with Sam. That, and hiding their wallets.
- Emily is quick to flip off Ash when they first meet in Misfile.
- We learn later on that this is quite out of character for her. However, she was having a bad day.
- Rhea from Slightly Damned lets Buwaro know she isn't interested in what he has to say.
- Mentioned in You Damn Kid, in which the narrator thinks it's unfair that Dot's friend Sadako was punished for doing this. Sadako has six fingers on each hand, so the finger she raised technically wasn't her middle finger "and therefore not a bad finger".
- This Dominic Deegan strip, done by Rocky the Elemental. Slightly justified in that he can't speak and communicates through gestures.
- Later, when Stunt badmouths him when he thinks he's not around, Rocky shoves a single arm up through the soil. Guess the gesture.
- Used several times in Loserz, like here and here.
- Used twice in The Adventures of Dr. McNinja, once as Ben Franklin commits a Dukeicidenote , and once by the good doctor himself, after he surfed a robo-Dracula down from the moon.
- User Friendly. "Can you count on your fingers in binary? Then I send you a 'four'." note
- Lucy has become fond of it of late.
- Homestuck: Confusingly, John flips off the audience at one point when WV's enthusiastic commands become increasingly rude.
- Much later, in his "talk" with Meenah Peixes, Kurloz Makara, who has so far not said a single word or made a single other gesture, flips her the bird when she asks what the "wicked word is these days."
- Damara Megido has a special sprite animation for flipping the bird with each hand.
- Erisolsprite does this during the Act 6 Part 5 opener. Jake English doesn't seem offended at all.
- In Drowtales, Kiel'ndia gives Khaless both barrels at once to show that she's less than impressed by her Breaking Speech. Two pages later her demon friends respond in turn (which, given how they represent the fans, proved to be an accurate depiction of the forum response).
- Dietzel, of Wapsi Square, apparently knows this one, too. Let's just say he isn't amused by Timmy in a Well jokes. Like the Garfield example above, it occurs "off-screen".
- In Dresden Codak, this is Kimiko's reaction when she wakes up in her hospital bed and sees her Disappeared Dad for the first time in many years.
- 8-Bit Theater: Black Mage does this two pages in a row while suffering from taffy-related lung trauma.
- In this El Goonish Shive sketchbook strip, Ellen does it in order to demonstrate how pixelation of just the finger is ineffective.
- Apple flips off Sony in this Consolers strip after hearing him accuse his games of "not being real games".
- Leo receives two in VG Cats when he confronts BioWare about the DLC and ending of the Mass Effect series.
- The Strange Salute for the Republic of Kickassia.
- The Bugle has a regular feature where listeners' Great Bird-Flipping Stories are read out.
- The Angry Video Game Nerd does this constantly. This extends to his more mundane actions, such as loading in an NES cartidge...with his middle finger, specifically.
- Fuck You And Your H2 is a site dedicated entirely to pictures of people flipping off Hummer H2 drivers.
- SCP Foundation:
Dr. Selman: How would you describe your captivity in the Circus Of The Disquieting?
- SCP-1884-B, the apparent twin sister of a mild-mannered woman with no hands, is a mass of hands with attitude.
SCP-1884-B: (SCP-1884-B raises the middle finger of every hand not being used to support its weight)
- SCP-261 is a vending machine that takes yen and gives bizarre edible articles in return. At one point they test giving it a counterfeit 500 yen coin. The machine produces a bag of candy similar to gummi bears, but shaped like hands with extended middle fingers. Made of potassium cyanide.
- Chimney Swift 11: In one of his previous intros, a chimney swift (the bird that he named himself after) gives him one as it looks down at him through the chimney of a house. So it's basically a bird flipping the bird.
- All over the place in Epic Rap Battles of History:
- Lady Gaga flips off Sarah Palin a split second before the battle begins.
- At the end of above battle, John McCain flips off the whole world.
- Master Chief gives a long one to Leonidas at the end of his rap.
- Barack Obama stealthily does this to Mitt Romney. While commenting on how it would be awkward to have a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Lady, he counts off with his middle finger, pinky, and ring finger, in that order.
- Bruce Lee shows Clint Eastwood his two-finger push-up. "KUNG F-U!"
- Pablo Picasso can be seen painting this in the background during his battle with Bob Ross.
- Jack the Ripper performs the British variant at the end of his second verse.
- YouTube personality AlphaOmegaSin is known to do this during his rants about things that really annoy him, sometimes combined with a Cluster F-Bomb. He also has a tiny 8-bit graphic image of himself holding up two middle fingers that appears in one of his intros.
- Pat the NES Punk has a thumbnail of Angry Joe holding up two middle fingers, both censored out with Nintendo logos, for his commentary about one of Angry Joe's rants about Nintendo blocking one of his gameplay videos.
- An "artist's rendering" of a proposed replacement◊ for the World Trade Center began circulating shortly after the events of 9/11/01.
- Joueur du Grenier: Grenier's conclusion of his test for X-Perts is to give the finger to the makers of the game. And then, in a scene reminiscent of the early days of this web video series, he destroys the game cartridge by firing an energy beam from his raised middle finger.
- Critical Role: Practically Vax'ildan's call-sign.
- Whateley Universe:
The sound of a small motor made me aware of a video camera in the room as I sat and took care of some overdue business. I scrunched down, and watched the camera watch me. Not wanting to miss my chance at giving the giving the wrong impression I flipped the camera the bird. Then I said, “fucking perverts.”I did get a slight giggle when the camera abruptly pointed to the opposite corner. Though I can’t say for certain, I was fairly sure the motor was not that fast.“Because you’re so much older than me,” I teased with a grin. “Oh wait… You barely look like you’re out of diapers…”“Bite me, kid,” Alyss responded as she flipped me the bird, which made everyone start to laugh.
- In the Nintoaster Instructional Video, Richard Daluz, playing himself, flips off the narrator after putting on a makeshift anti-static wrist strap.
- An example in animation can be found as far back as 1937; in "Skeleton Frolics" a piccolo player gives his conductor the double deuce (albeit inadvertently).
- South Park has Craig's family, who constantly give each other the finger.
- Craig Tucker has cornered the market in giving the finger.
- What the Japanese think about whales.
- Ike also gave the finger after Cartman rejects him when auditioning for the boy band.
- Cartman when he doesn't get invited to a party.
- Canadians on strike from Vancouver to St. John's, raise their middle fingers for you all to sit upon!
- Ignignokt of the Mooninites in Aqua Teen Hunger Force likes to flip the bird to anyone he doesn't like. His middle finger even extends for use when he's really displeased with someone.
- Err likes to smoke as he shoots the bird.
- In the "Spacecataz" sub-series, the two Plutonians, Oglethorpe and Emory, get into a fight with the Mooninites...all because the Mooninites flipped off Oglethorpe as the Plutonians' ship whizzed by.
- Master Shake and Carl are also VERY fond of giving people the middle finger.
- In one of Tweety's first appearances, he is being chased by a pair of Abbott and Costello-like cats. During the cartoon, the following exchange occurs:
Babbit: Give me the bird! Give me the bird!!
Catsello: If da Hays Office would only let me... I'd give him 'da boid' all right!
- Being Looney Tunes' Spiritual Successor, Animaniacs did a similar gag.
Miles Standish: Begone, pests, and give me the bird!
Yakko: We'd love to, really, but the Fox censors won't allow it.
- The gag also shows up during a parody of The Maltese Falcon in "This Pun For Hire"
Minerva Mink: Never mind that, just give me the bird!
Dot: We can't, this is a family show.
- Being Looney Tunes' Spiritual Successor, Animaniacs did a similar gag.
- In Justice League Hawkgirl gets crap past the radar when being held by Icthulhu.
Icthulhu: Speak to me, child of Thanagar.
Hawkgirl: I have nothing to say to you! I have a gesture, but my hands are tied.
- In The Simpsons Movie, Homer flips off the Angry Mob with both hands as he escapes down a sinkhole. Then he gets stuck and tries to use the fingers to dig himself out. This wasn't digitized on the FX airings of the movie.
- In the episode where Homer bowls a perfect game, the bullies can be seen flipping the camera off in the background during the news report.
- Fritz the Cat does this in The Nine Lives of Fritz the Cat, to a telephone after the operator hangs up on him. Much like Homer Simpson, he only has four fingers.
- Done ever so epically by the animated Adam Sandler to his caretaker as a hidden insult in Eight Crazy Nights.
Whitey: Now I assume you've done your pre-game warm-ups.Davey Stone: No, let me do them right now. [Holds up his fists, raises and lowers his middle fingers] One, two, three, four...Whitey: [Oblivious] That's good, but don't forget your hammies.
- In the movie-game tie in Dead Space: Downfall Alissa gives an interesting salute to the Captain after ordering to not help the colonists.
- In Titan Maximum, this appears to be Gibbs's favorite gesture. He usually gets pretty creative with it.
- Family Guy
- In "Brian: Portrait of a Dog" when leaving a dog show, Peter acted like it was All Part of the Show and commended an off-screen Brian for doing this. "Yeah, flip me off. Good boy".
- Lois once did it to her mother in "Patriot Games". It was digitized on Fox, but uncensored on [adult swim].
- When the space shuttle is taking off in "Space Cadet", Stewie says he wants to die giving his mother the finger.
- Happens in a few episodes of American Dad! such as "May the Best Stan Win" (by cyborg Stan), digitized on TBS airings despite four-fingered hands.
- Probably one of the oldest examples in a 1930s Willie Whopper cartoon. During a plane race one of the racers refuses to give St. Peter a ride... and he gives the racer the finger when he leaves!
- Total Drama Island uses this in one of their Getting Crap Past the Radar moments when Lindsay flips off Heather for betraying her.
- In Action a clip features the Yeti giving Chef the finger for crashing his golf-cart into his.
- Also in Action, Duncan does this to a cardboard cutout.
- Used again in the World Tour finale, when Heather asks for support the camera immediately switches to Leshawna flipping her off from the peanut gallery.
- Raphael may only have two fingers but he repeatedly gets away with doing this with his sai in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003).
- When "E.T. Returns Home" on Robot Chicken he is teased by bullies for only having a single finger glow while they can do the same with all of them. They don't appreciate it when he responds by flipping that one finger.
- In Beast Machines, Thrust very clearly flips Optimus Primal the bird. (One imagines the animators only got away with it because Thrust only has 3 fingers on each hand.) Optimus is not amused.
- He shows the same gesture to some of the other Maximals as well in an earlier episode.
- Adventure Time had Tree Trunks offended by a statue making "a rude gesture" in "Five More Short Graybles", only to later find that the statue actually just had Shelby the worm standing vertically on its raised fist. For the sake of the children in the audience, they never actually show the gesture, nor do they explicitly mention raising the middle finger.
- Dee Dee does this on the title card of the Dexter's Laboratory episode "Rude Removal". Also, in "Decode of Honor", one of the tattoos shown at the parlor Dee Dee goes to is of a hand doing this.
- The U.S. Acres episode "Wanted: Wade" has Wade do this when he asks Orson if the tag under his couch is his.
- In the pilot of Drawn Together, an irate Foxy raises her (censored) finger to Princess Clara, who is unable to get the message because "Foxy's hand went all blurry."
- The Australian animated film Go to Hell! (1997). After helping the Israelites escape across the Red Sea, Red (aka Satan) flips a huge bird to his father G.D. (aka God) with the help of a holographic projector.
- Gravity Falls
- Implied in "The Golf War". Surly teenage troublemaker Robbie is chased off the local mini-golf course for spraying graffiti, and makes "lewd hand gestures" at an employee from off-screen.
- In "Little Gift Shop of Horrors," a witch takes Stan's hands. Similar to the Justice League example above, Stan says he needs them back because he has a gesture to show her.
- Steven Universe: Whenever Peridot (with her limb enhancers) forms one of her hands into a blaster, her fingers shift and it is mostly done off screen. When it does come back on screen, it resembles a warped hand flipping the bird. This implies that the finger that does the firing is her middle finger. Then there is that moment◊ in "Keeping it Together" where Peridot sends a current through Amethyst's whip...
- In Rick and Morty, Rick trolls his car-powering microverse into believing that this is the "Universal Symbol of Peace". At the end of the episode, the microverse's head scientist (who now knows what his universe really is) flips off the sky, being the first person to use it in the correct context.
- In Superman Unbound, Lois Lane gives Brainiac both birds as he leans over to look into the bottle containing Metropolis. Even at a fraction of an inch high Lois isn't intimidated by anyone. He pauses in his Evil Gloating long enough to give her a Fascinating Eyebrow before turning away.
- Batman vs. Two-Face has a scene where Robin is implied to flip off Batman while under the effects of the Evil Extract Formula and transformed into a Two-Faced being like Two-Face. We don't see the gesture because Batman's body obscures Robin's hand from view, but the raising of his arm and what he says when he makes the gesture gives a good hint.
Robin: I got your antidote right here!
- Batman: Assault on Arkham. Killer Frost and the Riddler are cornered by the Special Crimes Unit, who command the two to return to their cells. After a pause, Killer Frost flips them the bird, causing them to open fire on the two.
Frost: That worked well.
- Cow and Chicken: The lyrics of the Sailcat song only make it seem that the titular Sailcat is just shaking his fist at the truck driver who squashed him, but pause at 0:52 and see by yourself.
- The Downtown episode "Before and After" has Mecca give Fruity the middle finger in response to him telling her not to copy his hand movements.
- Chinese navy strategic researcher (Rear Admiral) and TV host Zhang Zhaozhong◊, the Chinese translator of The Hunt for Red October. Now he underwent a Badass Decay in the two and a half decades, well known for providing his audience with exaggerated and amusingly wrong observations on military and diplomatic news every day.
- When captured by North Korea, the crew of the ship USS Pueblo were forced to appear in staged propaganda photos. Each man showed the finger in the photos. When pressed, they claimed it was a Hawaiian Good Luck sign. Unfortunately, North Korea was able to read the foreign press and soon discovered the truth.
- Some people claim Barack Obama did this to Hillary Rodham Clinton during one of the Democratic primary debates in 2008. Others maintain that he was just scratching his nose with his middle finger.
- George W. Bush's one fingered victory salute.
- An equivalent gesture (called in French the bras d'honneur or "Arm of Honor") is bending your right elbow, clenching your right fist and putting your left hand on your right arm's side opposing that of the elbow, used in France, Russia and several other countries. The "bird" was also imported into Russia from the West after The Great Politics Mess-Up. One can combine the arm with the Finger for emphasis.
- Because of its novelty and its presumed "American" origins, flipping the bird is known in Russia as the "fak" (yes, from the English word fuck rendered phonetically in Cyrillic). Despite of this, it is now universally recognizable, except maybe in the more remote areas of the country.
- There's also the joke about the reason why Westerners show the finger while Eastern Europeans show the arm up to the elbow.
- On WABC-TV in New York, anchor Roger Grimsby introduced a live broadcast from reporter Mara Wolinsky. Mara had been getting trouble from the cameraman and flipped him off just as the live broadcast started. The camera quickly cut back to Grimsby, who said, "Apparently, Mara knows who's number one in New York."
- There was a minor scandal during the last election in Sweden, when the chairman of the Left Party flipped off a leading Conservative during a debate. Luckily, it was not televised. Unluckily, someone had a cellphone camera.
- The most epic bird-flippery so far happened when a flock of birds flipped the bird... 'en masse' as a flock.
- Actress Pauley Perrette, best known for her role as Abby Sciuto on NCIS, subverts this by having a "Have a Nice Day" Smile tattoo on the middle finger of her right hand◊.
- During the final week of testimony in the Casey Anthony murder trial, a 28-year-old spectator decided to ignore the strict court orders against overt gestures or expressions, and flipped off prosecutor Jeff Ashton. Judge Belvin Perry found him in contempt and sentenced him to six days in county jail and a total fine of just over six hundred dollars.
- Davao City, Philippines vice mayor Rodrigo Duterte flashed the finger and cussed at critics of his daughter Sara (who was the mayor) following her widely-publicized punching of a trial court sheriff. Source.
- One Utah homeowner was run through hell by his neighbors for building 18" above the maximum roof height. In response, he put some "abstract art" of "cacti" on the side of his house, in their general direction. You be the judge.◊
- Comedian Jackie Mason nearly saw his career destroyed after being accused of having done this during a 1964 appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show. Sullivan banned him from appearing on the show again for nearly two years, and only relented after Mason (who vociferously denied having made the gesture, or even being aware of its meaning) initiated a libel suit.
- The Keyhole Nebula, part of the Carina Nebula, contains a cloud of gas that looks remarkably like a hand flipping the bird (at least it's not directly pointing towards us).
- A very unusual example involves a fetus showing the digitus impudicus during an ultrasound scan that apparently pissed it off. More on that here.
- Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau famously gave a group of protesters gathered around his train car in Salmon Arm, BC, the finger, giving rise to the term "Salmon Arm salute" or "Trudeau salute" in already meme-ridden Canadian politics. In fairness to Trudeau, the protesters were yelling anti-French slogans at him (Trudeau was a francophone from Quebec—Montreal to be precise—and his push for bilingualism and multiculturalism was very unpopular in Western Canada at the time).
- The notoriously foul-mouthed and short-tempered American politician Rahm Emanuel is missing most of the middle finger on one of his hands from an accident he had as a teenager. In a 2005 charity roast of then-Representative Emanuel, then-Senator Barack Obama joked that this injury "rendered him practically mute."
- Believe it or not, Mister Rogers did this not only with one finger. He did it with two... count 'em... TWO fingers! It makes much more sense in context.Explanation
- Older Than They Think: While we don't know whether anyone flipped the bird in ancient Rome, we do have a record from Suetonius of Emperor Caligula, when a certain custom required the Praetorian Guard centurion Cassius Chaerea to kiss his ring, pulling back all but his middle finger and waggling it obscenely to mock Chaerea's manliness. As Christian author Paul L. Maier notes in his book Pontius Pilate, it was "a gesture which has stood the test of time."
- Older Than Dirt, actually. One of the bodies found in the Danish marshes, dating from the early Iron Age, held her fist in the "fig" position. This was the "Girl from Egtvedt".
- There is visual evidence of the gesture at least as far back as this picture◊ of baseball player Charles "Old Hoss" Radbourn, flipping the bird during an 1886 team photo.
- During the infamous Max Headroom Broadcast Intrusion, the person pirating the signal freaks out (something he does on several occasions during the broadcast) and gives the camera the finger early on, with a prosthetic lengthening his finger to enhance the effect.
- This used to be a common way for celebrities to spoil the shots of bothersome paparazzi, as photos with obscene gestures weren't easily salable. Nowadays, the offending digit just gets photoshopped out. Or left in if the tabloid wants to make them look even worse.
- Martin Freeman is quite fond of this gesture.
- Will Power of Indy Car, after being taken out in a crash after a race was started while it was still way too slippery, flipped both birds at the race director on live TV.
- After losing to Andy Murray in a tennis final for the second time in a row in spite of having five match points against him, Tommy Robredo gave him the double-bird salute at the net. It was done entirely in good humor, however.
- Formula One, Flipping the bird at 130mph+ since 1990s.
- It appears Galileo has the last word on his being condemned as a heretic by the Church.
- Ask the majority of hearing people if they know sign language. If you specify which, they might also know how to fingerspell, but most likely they’ll say that’s the one ‘sign’ they know.
- Because there are only so many ways human beings can comfortably configure their hands it's almost inevitable that sign languages will contain a few unfortunate gestures (though usually not ones considered offensive in the languages culture of origin). Case in point: The letters "T" and "F" in American Sign Language are identical to the aforementioned "Fig" and "OK" signs respectively.
- Anytime at some ordinary concert, when a drunken heckler says yelling, "Play some Freebird, man!", sometimes the lead guitarist would show them their "A-chord"!
- The Unicode emoji character 0x1F595, as shown here (if your browser supports it): 🖕
- Kristen Stewart once flipped off a crowd of paparazzi that was following her. Since they couldn't (officially) publish any pictures with an obscene gesture in them, they had to leave.
- This statue in Milan, Italy titled L.O.V.E.
- Korean pro Overwatch player Profit got a $1k fine for showing his middle finger in front of a camera.
- Carrie Fisher's favorite thing was flipping her middle finger. After her death, Mark Hamill said that people's lasting image of her should be her giving you the finger.