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Imagined Innuendo

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Steve Rogers: What about you and Stark? How do I know you two haven't been... "fonduing?"
Agent Carter: You still don't know a bloody thing about women...
Howard Stark: Fondue's just cheese and bread, my friend.

What happens when, in-story, Alice starts interpreting statements by Bob to be a variant of Double Entendre. Most common if Alice has either been given misinformation by a third party, or if she's simply not intelligent enough to realize what it is that Bob is actually referring to. Almost always, Hilarity Ensues.

Can result in I Didn't Mean to Turn You On.

Not to be confused with the Accidental Innuendo, where it's the audience who got the wrong impression. Compare and contrast Innocent Innuendo and Mistaken for Flirting. See also Calling Me a Logarithm.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In Dark Gathering, Yayoi asks Eiko to "take care" of Keitarou (Eiko's boyfriend), who is stressed out because of a previous battle. It's ambiguous what she meant, but Eiko clearly thinks she's suggesting having Sex for Solace.
  • One of these kicks off Hanamaru Kindergarten. In the first episode, one of the main characters, a 4-year-old girl, is standing alone along on the side of the street. Another main character, a male kindergarten teacher, comes by on his bike and asks the little girl, "Excuse me, Ojou-chan. What are you doing here?" "Ojou-chan" essentially means "Miss" or "Little lady". Not an unusual way to address a young girl whom one does not know. Anzu, the girl, has a very active imagination, however, and she jumps to the conclusion that he's hitting on her. He turns out to be her teacher at kindergarten and the misunderstanding persists. Hilarity Ensues.

  • When he isn't doing redneck jokes, Jeff Foxworthy has a bit about That Guy Who Can Turn Any Comment Into a Sexual Innuendo.
    Girl: I need to have my tires rotated.
    That Guy: I'd sure like to rotate her tires, uh huh, uh huh.

    Comic Books 
  • Robin: In the first miniseries, Tim gets a fright when Lady Shiva wakes him up at night for martial arts training, telling him that she'll bring him to a "whole new world". Tim responds with "Um... I don't think I'm ready for this". Lady Shiva then nonchalantly replied with a joke that they could do that later, after the training.

    Fan Works 
  • Exaggerated in one particularly memetic Touhou short comic by Bomber Grape, in which Remilia misinterprets completely innocuous actions by the girls around her as blatant sexual advances. Hilarity Ensues.
  • In the Homestuck fan adventure Alabaster: The Doomed Session, Vamuin is so used to innuendo and phallic symbolism no one can stand him saying he's going to "introduce everyone". Even when he means it.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • In Captain America: The First Avenger, Steve Rogers mistakes a mention of a "late-night fondue" as a reference to something sexual after he hears Howard Stark inviting Peggy out to have fondue. It's a while before anyone explains to him what fondue is.
  • The 1940 British Thriller A Window in London has a scene where the protagonist, Peter Thompson (played by Sir Michael Redgrave) is describing a stabbing he thought he witnessed to a reporter:
    Thompson: I was looking out of the window on the underground, travelling overground... when I saw a man messing about with a girl.
    Reporter: What?!
    Thompson: He was trying to stick a knife into her.
    Reporter: Ha, knife, I get you.
  • Young Frankenstein has Frederick exclaim "What knockers!" as he helps Inga off the wagon. He was talking about the actual door knockers.
  • Kurt in Horrible Bosses is a bit sex-obsessed. At one point he sees a picture of Mrs. Harken and declares "I'd like to bend her over a barrel and show her the fifty states," prompting his friends to ask what he means. The only answer he can provide is "Y'know, it's in that movie." In one of the outtakes, he turns to the camera and announces "Well, it is now."

  • This happens in P. G. Wodehouse novels all the time. Bertie Wooster mistakenly creates the impression that he is proposing to/hitting on/in love with various women on a regular basis (when usually he is, in fact, trying to set her up with a friend). Most of the time they aren't particularly interested in Bertie, but end up accepting his "proposal" anyway, for one reason or another.
  • Can You Spare a Quarter?: Jamie originally assumes that Jason is Graham's boy (in the sense of Sex Slave or at least sex partner) and wonders whether Graham will still want him, but Graham assures him that he (Jason) isn't.
  • The Northern Caves is about a Mind Screw Fictional Document also titled The Northern Caves. One passage seems to be describing a sexual seduction, but Aaron qualifies this by saying, "it's not clear to me whether I'm merely reading sexual connotations into strange phrase".
    Sally went for Ws full exoteric crystal matrix as hard as graphene megavolts into his LIGHTNING FAST SPHEX transmission lost oh very good 100% on the full heavy
  • In The Stupidest Angel: A Heartwarming Tale of Christmas Terror, during a bout of sex, Molly promises to wash Theo's car. Theo assumes this is a euphemism for something, but confesses he doesn't know what it means. Molly explains it means exactly what she said.
  • A Running Gag in A Song of Ice and Fire involves Shagga, son of Dolf, and his threats to cut people's "manhoods" off and feed them to goats. Shagga is in fact referring to beards when he says that, which Grandmaester Pycelle discovers to his dismay.
  • In Hogfather, Anaglypta Huggs is an upper middle-class Ankh-Morporkian who is interested in folk traditions, but determined to remove all coarseness and indelicacy from them, even if nobody can see it except her. Which is why her Hogswatch Wassailers sing "The Red Rosy Hen Greets the Dawn of the Day".
  • The Ganymede Takeover. Swesnegard is trying to tell his alien overlord that he planted a miniature Tracking Device in the hair of a journalist who was going to interview the Rebel Leader.
    Swesnegard: When that girl was in the hotel I took the liberty of patting her sweet little head.
    Mekkis: I am not interested in your sexual depravity.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In one episode of Just Shoot Me!, Finch switching around the "from" tags on birthday gifts for Elliot ends up switching a gag gift of sex toys (from a minor, male character) with a normal gift of video games (from Maya). Elliot is understandably uncertain when the woman who gave him video games asks if she can come to his house to "play with the present I gave you". Meanwhile he freaks out the guy who gave him the sex toys by inviting him over for "just us guys" playtime. The guy goes for it, though.
  • In Glee, Mercedes suspects that Kurt is least until the cheerleaders tell her he likes her. Then she interprets every time they hang out as a date. Unfortunately, her first instincts were correct.
    • Happens again in Season Two between Kurt and Blaine. There's even a throwback to the above example after it all comes crashing down.
  • In I Love Lucy, Lucy goes to a job interview with Ricky in disguise. Unfortunately, Ricky can't really talk to women without sounding like he's propositioning them. When he asks to see her credentials, Lucy slaps him.
  • A "by proxy" example, if you will, as it was actually the radio that did it. In 'Allo 'Allo!, a Britcom set in Occupied France during World War II, stealth French Resistance operative René is hiding a radio behind the bar in his Café. The radio begins spouting code phrases meant for resistance agents (usually gibberish like "Pierre enjoys riding his new bicycle") and this rouses the suspicions of German Wehrmacht Lieutenant Gruber. Gruber asks René who is saying these things, and René, wanting to keep the radio a secret, claims that he's the one who said them. Unfortunately for René, the next phrase to come out of the radio is "Listen very carefully, meet me behind the woodshed at one o'clock." Lieutenant Gruber interprets this as an overture for a homosexual tryst, and very eagerly and happily agrees to meet René at o'clock.
  • Friends examples:
    • In "The One Where Eddie Won't Go" Rachel reads a female-empowering, jargon-laced book, “Be Your Own Windkeeper,” which inspires her to push back on Ross’ demand that they leave for movie on time, resulting in this exchange:
      Rachel: How do you expect me to grow if you won’t let me blow?
      Ross: You know I don’t... have a... have a problem with that...
    • In "The One Where Chandler Can't Cry" as per the episode title the other Friends have discovered Chandler hasn't cried since his parents divorce in childhood, and start renting sad movies to try and see if any will make him cry. At the same time Joey and Ross discover that Phoebe is apparently a porn-starnote  and they rent one of her films to prove it to the rest of the group. Which leads to this quote:
      Monica: (noticing the bag Joey’s carrying) Oh great! Did you get a movie?
      Joey: Uhhh, yeah. Yeah. But uh, I don’t think it’s the kind you’re gonna like.
      Chandler: You didn’t get more movies that are gonna have us reaching for the tissues all night did you?
      (Joey and Ross exchange looks.)
      Joey: Sort of…
  • Cheers: In episode "Look Before You Sleep", Norm and Cliff are so vicariously wrapped up in Sam's sex life that they take his talk of killing silverfish as Double Entendres.
    Sam: I had silverfish all over my apartment last night.
    Cliff, Norm: Ooh, silverfish!
    Sam: Spent the whole night rolling up newspapers and swatting them.
    Cliff: Oh, kinky.
    Sam: It got so bad there, I started rubbing ammonia on the baseboard.
    Cliff: Sammy, don't know what that means, but does she have a sister?
  • In one Wings episode, Antonio (played by Tony Shalhoub) gleefully attempts to participate in stereotypical American male sex-humor with the guys just after the vixen seducing him beckons him to her room:
    Antonio: Oh, man. We're going to go upstairs and 'have sex' if you know what I mean.
  • Mystery Science Theater 3000:
    • Given equal parts lampshading and subversion when Joel instructs the 'bots that the art of entendre "isn't so much what you say, but how you say it."
      Servo: Hey, Joel. We've got... commercial sign. Heh heh heh...
      Joel: And now a word from our sponsors, BOOM!
      Crow: She was built like a brick sh...
      Servo: Crow!
      Crow: ...ow... boat. Showboat.
    • Sometimes, the entendres are implied to be about to occur, but then avoided entirely, see Riding With Death, Where a spinning number dial gets to 69:
      Servo: Hey, guys, it's my favorite number! Woo-hoo!
      Mike: What, 70?
      Servo: Yeah, I love 70!
  • In one episode of The Office (US), Michael asks if anyone wants some "man meat". Dwight then replies that he wants some, prompting Jim to announce "Michael, Dwight wants your man meat!" They were discussing ACTUAL meat (specifically the steaks Michael had just grilled) the whole time.
  • Scrubs: The first episode in which Sean appears has him tell Elliot he has something for her in his pants. Horrified by how that must have sounded, he clarifies by telling her he has a note from his physician in the pocket of his pants (he was wearing a hospital gown at the time).
  • Supernatural has one with a news special on the meteoric ascent of Richard Roman and his corporate conglomerate, Richard Roman Enterprises: "The Rise of Dick".
  • QI: In the "I" season Shakespearean episode "Immortal Bard", the panel are all dressed in Elizabethan attire. At one point Stephen Fry says, "Oh dear, I got my chain stuck in my ruff."
    David Mitchell: That sounded like it should sound rude, but then when you think about it, no, not really.
  • Janda Kembang: In episode 2, the RT leader tells Sri that he is "cleaning his bird", which disgusts Sri, implicitly because she mistakes it for an innuendo for cleaning penis, before he shows that he is cleaning his pet bird.
  • In the Blackadder the Third episaode "Ink and Incapability", Prince George's reaction to Dr Johnson's Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness is "I don't know what you're talking about, but it sounds damn saucy!"

    Puppet Shows 
  • In It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas Movie, Rachel Bitterman's assistant assumes everything she says is a come on... eventually annoying her into saying "You know... not everything is an innuendo!" He then assumes that the word "innuendo" is itself an innuendo.

  • Much Ado About Nothing: After Benedick has been convinced that Beatrice is in love with him, he interprets everything she says as an innuendo when she is sent to bid him "come to dinner." — ignoring the fact that this encounter is quite identical to every other encounter they've had where he saw no romantic subtext at all.

    Video Games 
  • Oghren makes some of these when talking about weapons in Party Banter in Dragon Age: Origins. Varric and Isabela also do this at one point in party banter in Dragon Age II. For the record, Varric and Isabela were talking about knives. Well, technically daggers, but Varric can never remember the difference.
  • In Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception Sully manages to make everything sound like some sort of innuendo.
  • During Yosuke's Story Mode in Persona 4: Arena, when he comes across Chie, she immediately requests to eat him. Yosuke spends a few moments trying to figure out if she meant it sexually. She meant it literally. Then, when Yosuke brings it up after their battle, Chie thinks it's him who is trying to say something sexual.
  • Iris Heart in Hyperdimension Neptunia Victory thinks that when Nepgear says something about a hardware and a software, she thought it was sexual in nature. This being Iris Heart, this was kind of expected.
  • The protagonist of Jönssonligan: Jakten på Mjölner needs to walk up to two picnicking Frenchmen at one point to get some food for a Zany Scheme. One of the dialogue choices during this section is "Nice meat!" ... Ending the conversation immediately because the picnickers interpret this as the protagonist trying to flirt with one of them and accuse him of being a Dirty Old Man.

    Visual Novels 
  • C14 Dating: Deandre is prone to picking up sexual meanings where none are intended, between his dirty mind, the Separated by a Common Language aspects of his New Zealand English compared to everyone else's (everyone else is either from the USA or learned it while living in Belgium) and the homonyms of some geology terms. The scene in which Melissa walks into a room while Hendrik (a Pungeon Master who is also the "oblivious to innuendos" type of asexual) is on the tail end of giving Deandre a long geology talk is a sight to behold.
  • Miu Iruma from Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony is prone to reading too much into innocuous remarks and mistaking them for something sexual. To name some examples, in Ultimate Talent Development Plan, Hiyoko Saionji tells Miu to sew her mouth shut, but Miu believes that it is a kind of kink play. In Love Across the Universe, she mistakes Shuichi's suggestion to "get their bodies moving" to mean that they go to the gym storage room and see what happens next.

  • In The Wolf at Weston Court there's a brief misunderstanding between Sorenson and the naive Elgin, when the latter comes home looking rather disheveled with Nova:
    Elgin: If anyone asks, you haven't seen me since this morning, and I'm certainly not at home. That goes for the lady as well.
    Sorenson: I don't think your father would approve, sir.
  • Sam & Fuzzy has an example of this when Fuzzy rattles off a string of euphemisms after Sam's first date with Candice. Sam treats them straight, but the reader immediately discovers that Fuzzy is still under the influence of his home-made hallucinogens and all his euphemisms refer to things he is hallucinating.
  • Fun fact from The Whiteboard: "Brass nipples" are an actual component of a paintball marker, contrary to what Pirta thought when a customer at Doc's paintball shop asks for some.
  • Non-sexual example from Bitmap World: When Harry comes home from his first day at the new office, he mentions that he had a bad day, "but at least I didn't have to wear a bunny suit." His wife assumed the phrase was some obscure computer jargon, but he was actually referring to one of his coworkers, who was dressed as a bunny.
  • In one Skin Horse strip, Unity, phoning in a report to Sweetheart and Tip, says she's "out here punchin' the gator". Sweetheart doesn't even know what that means, and she clarifies "I totes cannot make this clearer. I am punchin' this 'gator. In the face." Sweetheart still isn't sure it's not a euphemism, and Tip recalls a Noodle Incident when Unity actually throttled a bishop.

    Web Original 
  • Occasionally done deliberately for comedy purposes in The Comics Curmudgeon. In one relatively early post, Josh responded to a Rex Morgan, M.D. strip in which June Morgan asks troubled teen Niki to paint the garage by wondering "[i]f 'painting the garage' is anything like 'cleaning the basement,' a euphemism thought up by Mrs C. and her filthy-minded college friends". Two months later, Niki was telling June he was happy to clean her garage, and ever since then, it's been something of a Running Gag whenever anyone in the comics wants their garage cleaned. Later the same year, after weeks of pretending that Niki and Rex's fishing trip was full of homoerotic subtext, Josh suffered complete Sarcasm Failure when Rex told Niki "And always wet your hands before you handle a trout!"

    Web Videos 
  • In commodoreHUSTLE, Alex invokes this in "Bros Clubbing Bros".
    Alex: Hey James, you wanna play Bros Twisting bros?
    James: [backs away] Is this another trick question?
  • Kämpfer Abridged. This happened in the anime as well, but poor Akane's confusion over Natsuru asking her to come over to his house is more hilarious than it was.

    Western Animation 
  • The Amazing World of Gumball: In "The Crew", Gumball and Darwin are told by a group of senior citizens to send their friend Louie a "message". They think they have to "ice" him, but the senior citizens just want them to send him a text message.
  • In the Family Guy episode "Breaking Out Is Hard To Do", Lois ends up developing kleptomania, gets caught, and lands in prison. During a family visit, she explains that she feels genuinely ashamed of her actions and has accepted her sentence, but then Quagmire overhears what she's saying and gets the wrong idea.
    Lois: I guess I was stealing, because I was so sick of the same old routine. I felt like I had a void in my life. Like, there was a secret hole in me.
    Quagmire: (excitedly) Oh, God!
    Lois: And I was trying to fill that hole with all kinds of expensive objects and things.
    Quagmire: Oh, God!
    Lois: And I felt wonderful with all those things filling that hole.
    Quagmire: Oh, God!
    Lois: I did this to myself, so I'm just gonna have to lay back and let the penal system teach me a lesson.
    Quagmire: That one is also sexual!
  • "Pepper Ann, do you want breasts?". Her mother meant "chicken breasts" as she was making dinner, but Pepper Ann, who was going through gym-induced A-Cup Angst, reacted by covering her chest and yelling "WHAT?".
    • In fact, that episode's plot was triggered by this trope, as Pepper Ann misunderstood her gym teacher's request for "support" as that she'd need a "bra", when she meant a "partner for the trampoline" (Trinket making inappropriate jokes early on didn't help matters).
  • The Simpsons episode "Last Exit to Springfield" has Homer as a Union Boss, whom Mr. Burns tries to deal with by making innuendos toward bribery. Unfortunately for Burns, Homer ends up concluding that Burns is trying to seduce him.


Video Example(s):


Buffay the Vampire Layer

The Friends apparently discover that Pheobe Buffay is a adult film star and has starred in several pornographic parodies of films and TV shows. I turns out this is actually Phoebe's twin Ursula appropriating her name.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (13 votes)

Example of:

Main / ParallelPornTitles

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