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Stupidly Long Filler Sound

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Speech disfluency is often times a break or (in music terms) a rest between the flow of speech. These include fillers such as "like", "so," and "uh", or in Japanese, "anou" and "eto". These fillers are often exaggerated as a heavily exaggerated form of Overly Long Gag.

Basically, say a character tells another character, who's not the sharpest tool in the shed, something, they take a while going 'uhhhhhhhhhh...', or repeatedly filling "like" between words worth more than a Valley Girl could. Reasons can include things such as evading a question, or they're dumbfounded; sometimes they weren't listening to the question, sometimes they're confused, or sometimes utter this when they're given multiple choices; or sometimes it emphasizes how a total ditz the character is. And those fillers take seconds and it stays there rather that keeping an awkward silence.

Sometimes they say something, or they may change the subject instead. Sometimes, the overly long filler sound can also be an expression of exhaustion. And sometimes, in a romance scene, the love confessor can utter this, only for the confessee to silence them by reciprocating that filler.

Often paired with a Simpleton Voice, but not always. Can also be uttered by The Ditherer, whether they're a ditz or not.

Compare Verbal Tic and Beat.


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    Comic Books 
  • Big Moose from the Archie Comics, if not saying "Duh...", does this frequently if he gets dumbfounded by simple questions or, in one strip, rhetorical questions.

    Fan Works 
  • In Sailor Moon Abridged, Megami has Serena, whose character is flanderized to a ditz with an eating disorder, sometimes give exaggerated "uh"s.

    Films — Animation 

    Live-Action TV 
  • Played with in The Big Bang Theory where after finding out Leonard's mother is coming to visit, Penny pelts Leonard with questions on whether she knew the two of them were going out. Leonard continues responding with "uhhhh", to the point where Sheldon says:
    Sheldon: Leonard, I'm no expert on meditation, but if you're trying to calm yourself down, I believe the word is "Om".
  • In an episode of Black Books, Bernard is working at a fast food restaurant and encounters an indecisive customer whose "uhhhhhhhh..." continues for such a long time that Bernard cuts him off by roaring "WHAT DO YOU WANT!?".

  • On one page of Paranatural (part of which is pictured above), Ed utters an "uhh..." with 84 "h"'s in one panel in response to Johnny accepting himself as a bully.
    Johnny: Hey man, I owe you one. I think I was at a real crossroads there. Coulda turned out way different. But thanks to you, it didn't.
    Ed: Mmmmm the power was inside you all along?...

    Web Original 
  • Game Grumps: According to Dan, long "Eh"s are his father's Verbal Tic. He is shown to be telling the truth when he plays a recorded message from his dad. This gets played with in certain episodes.
    Dan: [impersonating his dad] I'm happy. I'm feeling eehhhhhhh
    Arin: [joining in] eehhhhhhhh
    • According to Dan, this happens because his father's first language is Hebrew and he has to translate everything he says into English word by word. The "ehh" occurs whenever he struggles to remember a proper English word, phrase or name.
      Dan: (impersonating his dad) "Can people hear [your music] on, ehhhh... Spoofy?note 
  • Homestar Runner: Issue 11 of Teen Girl Squad features So And So responding twice to utterly baffling things with a comically drawn-out "Ummmmmm... 'kay." The first time is in response to an astronaut punching out her boss at the Shirt-Folding Store and explaining it's because "She killed my dog". The second time (which is drawn out even longer) is in response to a customer coughing up a miniature baseball stadium.
  • PeanutButterGamer had a small one when deciding what colour to make Putt-Putt in one of his videos.
    PBG: Wait... Which colour do I get? WHICH COLOUR DO I GET??? Red, Blue, Green... I DUNNO! Uhhhhhhhhh... PURPLE!
    [the already-purple putt-putt gets painted purple again]
    PBG: Yeahhhh... I'm purple again!
  • Twitch streamer Forsen has a distinctive nasally "uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuhhhh" Verbal Tic when he loses his train of thought, a long running source of amusement to his fans.

    Western Animation 
  • The Amazing World of Gumball:
    • In "The Treasure", Nicole accidentally starts explaining why the family's always been short on money (Richard blew their savings on an internet scam selling stars), then stops herself by droning on one syllable ("If it wasn't forrr...") until disappearing between camera shots.
    • In the episode "The Plan", Gumball, Darwin, and Anais triy to stop their mother from meeting someone named "Daniel Lennard", whom they thought was an evil slimeball when he's actually a cosmetics brand, and spend the episode mentally testing and revising their plan. Part of it involves Darwin calling Nicole, and every imagined failure leads to Darwin droning "uhhhhhh...." until his head explodes.
      [Darwin is using a pay phone this time in town]
      Darwin: Hello, this is your boss from the place you work. We need you to come here right away or you're fired!
      Nicole: [worried] Why? What's going on? Is the Kobiashi Account or is it the infrastructure problem with the throughput outflow?
      Darwin: Uhhhhhhhhhh... [his head nearly explodes, but Anais puts it back together]
      Anais: Turn the page!
  • An Animaniacs music video titled "Macadamia Nut", which is "The Macarena" with parody lyrics, has the cast break out in a giggling fit. Slappy Squirrel, as implacable as ever, has to ask "What's so funny?" Several characters emits lengthy "uhh"s, trying to explain the joke. Yakko gives a drawn out one solo, before giving up and beginning the third stanza. Viewable here at the 02:48 mark.
  • Butt-Head from Beavis and Butt-Head often responds to questions with a leading "Uhhh..." as his little-used mind tries to catch up to his much-used mouth. These "uhhh"s are especially lengthy when Butt-Head is caught prevaricating, and he tries to formulate a blame-shift or cover story.
  • Bob's Burgers: Tina Belcher's main catchphrase is an elongated groan, which she often does whenever confused or nervous. Special note goes to "Tina-Rannosaurus Wrecks", where she groans for 30 seconds straight during the opening sequence of her driving Bob's car.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: In "The Krusty Krab Training Video", Squidward asks Patrick his order, and the "uh" keeps going past a change to another scene. When we come back, Patrick hasn't stopped, so Squidward takes the Interactive Narrator's advice to suggest a Krabby Patty. Patrick takes the suggestion, but starts back up when asked 'for here or to go', causing Squidward to bang his head on the cash register.
  • In Family Guy, Quagmire lapses into this while on his job as an airline pilot.
  • In one episode of Futurama, Fry asks a temporarily-stupefied Leela to give him a topic. She answers, "Duuuuuuuuuuuh".

So,... uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhm..... yeah...


Video Example(s):


"For Here or To Go?"

After Squidward suggests for Patrick to order a Krabby Patty, Squidward asks him "for here or to go?" When Patrick utters a stupidly long "uhhh..." Squidward slams the cash register.

How well does it match the trope?

4.77 (35 votes)

Example of:

Main / StupidlyLongFillerSound

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