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  • Jekyll & Hyde: A game of "Let's Make A Date" has Colin as Dr. Jekyll trying to fight his urge to turn into Mr. Hyde.
  • Jewish Mother:
    • A game of Party Quirks had Greg Proops hosting with Denny Siegel's character being his stereotypical Jewish mother. Greg himself got to be Tony's Jewish mother in the same game of the UK version.
    • A game of the 1930s gangsters version of "The Millionaire Show" has Karen Nakamura play Ryan's mom. Her version of a gangster moll causes Ryan to remark that he's not Jewish even though his mother apparently is.
  • Job Mindset Inertia: A regular improv sketch (usually seen on the "Scenes From A Hat" segment) was to have one or more of the performers pretend to be an employee in one kind of business (example: dry cleaners) that still had the mentality of another job (example: Good Cop/Bad Cop), with the other performers playing the increasingly-disturbed customers. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Job Song: "Greatest Hits" is a recurring sketch on the show that always has a song about an unorthodox subjects. Some are about jobs, including butcher, flight attendant, accountant, and bus driver.
  • Just a Stupid Accent:
    • The cast often mocked their own difficulty at speaking in believable foreign accents.
    • One game of Living Scenery is about "athletes training in the Alps for the Winter Olympics", which for some reason led to Colin and Ryan doing the same indeterminate accent for the whole thing.
  • "Just Joking" Justification: One game of "Hollywood Director" has Colin suggest doing the scene backwards. After he says cut he laughs.
    Colin: I didn't think you'd actually do it! Actors are so stupid!
  • Kick the Dog: Wayne's idea of "RoboCop turned to a life of crime" involves literally doing this.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: A "Scenes From The Hat" suggestion was things that would make the audience start booing. Ryan says wait until a bus is coming and shove a old lady in front of it. The audience explodes in cheering, and Ryan is confused by the fact that it clearly wasn't what he was going for.
  • Kill 'Em All: The "Weird Newscasters" where Ryan plays a mercenary out to kill everyone on the show. He can't quite catch Colin, though.
  • Klatchian Coffee:
    • In one "Greatest Hits" about bowling:
      Colin: From the time I was born to the time I was died and then I was reincarnated and come back as this, bowling has been a big part of my life. Sure, it's not really a sport, but it's got great music attached to it!!!
      Ryan: You're drinking coffee again, aren't you?
      Colin: YES, I am!
    • In a "Hollywood Director" where Ryan played a hunky pool boy seducing Kathy Greenwood, one of the styles was that the performers drank too much caffeine. This led to everyone talking at double speed, making spastic gestures, and shouting every line.
    • Another Hollywood Director game in the revival series starts with Ryan and Greg as hunters, which when crossed with this trope leads to Reckless Gun Usage (Ryan gets so jittery that his gun goes off into Greg's head!)
  • The Knights Who Say "Squee!":
  • "Knock Knock" Joke: This one, from a "Greatest Hits" playing:
    Ryan: Knock knock knock!
    Colin: Who's there?
    Ryan: Traveling salesman!
    Colin: Traveling salesman who?
    Ryan: [Ryan is thrown for a loop; apparently he wasn't trying to do a knock knock joke]
  • Kryptonite Factor: Wayne's ticklish.

  • Lampshaded Double Entendre:
    • The game "If You Know What I Mean" involves the players coming up with as many double entendres as they can for the given scenario, and ending every one with the phrase "if you know what I mean."
    • Also done in a non-"If You Know What I Mean" game: During "Weird Newscasters", Wayne played an Italian stud.
      Wayne: Sometimes when I'm out, and I'm running with the bulls, IF you know what I mean...
  • Lampshade Hanging:
    • This happens when Ryan does a transition during "Greatest Hits". Colin shows him up later.
      Colin: Wow. Nice segue.
    • During a "Greatest Hits" about sci-fi, Colin played with the formula by appearing alongside Wayne during the songs and pretending it was a music video. After the first song (which featured quite a bit of dancing), Ryan lampshaded how they shot the music video weeks ago and yet Colin still looks tired. He further lampshaded by asking if that's the only shirt Colin owns.
    • When Wayne Brady's infamous "HORWARD" song unexpectedly speeds up.
      Wayne: [singing] Howard... can you last? Howard... how'd this song get so damn fast?
    • In a playing of Dubbing with audience member Betty, she frequently didn't flap her lips when Brad spoke. At one point, Ryan (who played her jealous jock boyfriend) brought attention to this:
      Ryan: Your lips may be... no, actually, they're not.
    • This game of Sound Effects led to one underwhelming sound after another.
      Colin: This assignment has been fraught with almost danger!
    • At the start of one "Party Quirks", Chip pretended to be on the phone, and referenced the game's format:
      Chip: You want to go out afterwards? (...) No, it won't take long. They come over, I guess who they are, they go home.
    • In one "Greatest Hits", Colin directly references the fact that their banter is one of the biggest draws of the game.
      Colin: I love our banter!
  • Lampshaded the Obscure Reference:
    • In episode four of season eight, Drew compares Colin to Bushwack Bill.
      Drew: A thousand points to... anyone who knows who Bushwack Bill is.
    • In a Newsflash featuring rats in the background, one of the hints Ryan gave was that he and Kathy "need look no more". This was lampshaded by everyone after the game:
      Ryan: Yeah, didn't catch onto my "need look no more" clue.
      Colin: Isn't that weird?
      Drew: That would've been a dead give-away!
      Ryan: [singing; Colin joins in after a couple words] We both found what we were looking for!
      Drew: OH, Ben, the theme from Ben.
      Ryan: A little obscure. I didn't want to just go, "Hey, look out for the rats!"
      Drew: Ben was actually the sequel; Willard was the first movie.
      Colin: That's right.
      Ryan: You remember the character's last name? [no response from Drew] "Wagner".
    • In a Newsflash where Ryan was in front of alligators and tried to reference "Do the Gator".:
      Brad: Reminds me of a Gary U.S. Bonds song.
      Ryan: Does it indeed?
      Ryan: I wish I followed the music scene right now.
    • Sarcasm Mode was in high commodity after the "Party Quirks" where Ryan played all the characters in a gay western:
      Drew: We've all seen gay westerns, right?
      Ryan: [shrugs] Who hasn't??
    • Inevitably pops up in the revival series, where Ryan's John Wayne act is brought back.
      Colin: The kids are gonna need Google for you.
  • Land Mine Goes "Click!": Invoked when "World's Worst" covers "people to be in the armed forces". How does Ryan solve this little problem? Simply pull Colin into his place!
  • Large Ham:
    • Everyone who was on the show, ever. Except maybe the musicians.
    • Wayne Brady, bless him, hams it up mercilessly. Colin even prodded him for it once in a Party Quirks game.
      Colin: Got some cheese to go with the ham?
    • Done intentionally in a "Weird Newscasters" by Ryan as a actor trying to give an over the top dramatic performance in the hopes of winning a Oscar.
    • A special mention goes to Tony Slattery, who even became the subject of an "in the style of" finale by the three other players.
    • The revival series has been off to a hamtastic start - not only from the new players like Keegan Michael Key, Nyima Funk and Gary Anthony Williams, but a couple of the guests like Lauren Cohan, Kevin McHale and Darren Chris have gleefully hammed along with the action.
  • Large Ham Announcer:
    • "Sportscasters" or "Sports Commentators" is a game in which two of the performers act out a mundane activity, such as being competing hot dog vendors, while the other two provide commentary as if it were a sporting event.
    • Lampshaded in one Scenes From A Hat game involving "Phrases that just don't sound right when a cheesy announcer says them".
    • During "Lines you should not open a sermon with".
      Chip: Let's get ready to Gospeeeeeeeeeeel!
    • In a "Fim, TV & Theater Styles" where Ryan is a mad scientist, the style switched to "Spanish Soccer Telecast":
      Ryan: I slept with your wife, I slept with her two times, and it was gooooooooooood!!!
  • Larynx Dissonance: During a playing of "Scenes Cut From a Movie", one suggestion was Braveheart, where Brad ordered his men to take a shower.
    Colin: [in a high-pitched Scottish voice] Eh, I don't want mah freedom.
    Drew: 1,000 points to Colin for sounding like the woman from Chicken Run, instead of from Braveheart. Do that again, it was pretty funny.
    Colin: [sounding even MORE feminine] I don't want mah freedom!
  • Last Kiss:
  • Last-Name Basis: After a commercial break.
    Drew: My name is Drew... "Mr. Carey" if you're nasty.
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others:
    • The US version of Whose Line Is It Anyway? introduces each of the four panelists with a related non-sequitur, ending in Ryan Styles, who gets a phrase that is comparatively more mundane, insulting, or damnation by faint praise. For example in one episode Wayne, Jeff, and Colin were introduced as famous landmarks while Ryan was introduced as a Cleveland bus stop.
    • In one "Greatest Hits", Ryan said if he's feeling romantic with his wife:
    Ryan: I'll get a nice bottle of champagne, dim the lights, and I'll put on some thrash. 'Cause nothing gets her hotter than a little thrash music.
  • Last-Second Word Swap:
    • In the UK version's "Greatest Hits Of Airlines", Brad mentions having to go to the bathroom.
      Brad: I gotta go in there because it's hit or miss, oh baby, yeah, I've been standing in line and I've really gotta take a tinkle.
    • In the UK "Hoedown" about hairdressers.
      Greg: Every time I sit in the chair, I just say "Damn my luck", because he always cuts my ear, and then I yell out darn.
    • The US "Hoedown" about surgery has Drew singing about having his appendix taken out.
      Drew: I hope soon I get out all my stitches, because let me tell you brother, they hurt like sons of guns.
  • Later Installment Weirdness:
    • U.K. version: The last season took place in L.A., which is strange considering that, outside of the New York episodes, the series was taped in England. It also introduced quite a few brand new performers (Phil LaMarr, Wayne Brady, Patrick Bristow, Debra Wilson, Catherine O'Hara), a departure from seasons 8 and 9 which had settled to a fairly small but stable group of regulars.
    • U.S. version: The concept of the show stayed the same throughout the run, but season 8 is odd in a unique sense: All of its episodes are made of old, unused footage from earlier seasons, especially season 1. It's weird to suddenly see Stephen Colbert, Ian Gomez and Patrick Bristow again, and seeing younger Ryan and Colin again is jarring to say the least.
  • Late to the Punchline:
    • A fantastic case during the second revival season. Jeff joined late in the old series and hadn't had much experience with the guessing gamesnote , so he took an awfully long time to guess that Ryan was a sperm cell. And it was only after the game ended and he'd sat down for a bit when he finally realised what everyone had been laughing at when Ryan uttered "I didn't want to come!"
    • In the first U.S. version, Drew opened the show by saying the points don't matter, "just like a bicycle-riding fish to a lesbian."note  The four performers were puzzled at first but got it after a few seconds.
    • In the "Newsflash" with Colin footage, after the game.
      Colin: Oh, I said the bald thing too!Note 
  • Late to the Realization: In an unaired "Greatest Hits" with songs of Beverly Hills, 90210, Ryan just then realized that the "90210" was a zip code.
    Ryan: Now the show makes sense.
  • Layman's Terms: A spoof happens in the "Infomercial" about hair removal when Ryan pulls a turkey baster out.
    Ryan: What's that look like to you?
    Colin: Why it looks like a thing that measures things when you squirt.
    Ryan: A baster? Is that what you're thinking of?
    Colin: That's exactly - I didn't want to lose anybody with the technical terms.
  • Least Rhymable Word:
    • In the Christmas Tree Irish Drinking Song, Colin gets passed "Extinguisher."
      Colin: Ding-di-ding-di-dingisher.
    • In a "Hoedown" about surgery, Drew's first two lines were:
      Drew: [singing] I had an operation, to take out my appendix / The name of my doctor was Dr. Bendix!
    • "Fear" isn't exactly a hard word to rhyme but in the "Hoedown" about final exams, Tony rhymed it with "diarrher".
    • In a "Duet" to Kim the light bulb saleswoman:
      Brad: Oh Kim, you are so effervescent / Your lightbulb is fluorescent, / And I am out of rhymes!
    • One unfortunate case involving the song title "Splinters in my Knuckles" in a Halloween-themed Greatest Hits, which led to all the guys substituting "knuckles" for "hands" eventually.
  • Leave the Camera Running:
    • While this happened in the old show too, an interview with Colin for the 2013 revival has him mentioning this directly as part of the new approach. Sure enough, in #3:
      Colin: [as a ventriloquist] I find you very attractive! [beat] And if you don't mind a guy with another guy... up his ass... [starts Corpsing and basically gives up on the act]
      [audience goes howling mad as we cut to a stupefied Wayne and Aisha laughing her head off]
      Ryan: Good night, everyone!
    • Colin again in #7, in the second game of "What's in the Bag" when he sees something he probably shouldn't have.
      Colin: Oh, I'm ready for a date later! [closes bag, audience starts howling]
      [later on]
      Aisha: ...and even though this might get cut out later, Safe Sex Is Important!
  • Left the Background Music On:
    • One session of Sound Effects had Colin playing Tarzan; he responded to Ryan's mimicking of tribal drums by turning off an imaginary iPod. The same gag showed up in an unaired Sound Effects where Colin acted out a day in the life of Superman.
    • In a "Greatest Hits" about nurses, Ryan asked Colin what the initials "R.N." stand for. While he says this, someone's cell phone jingle briefly plays in the audience. Ryan worked this into the scene by miming that he was turning off his pager.
  • Leitmotif: Each playing of "Improbable Mission" always used the same background tune (in the U.S. version, it was "Hit and Run", which was more famous for its use on The Ren & Stimpy Show). The same goes for "Narrate" and "Hey, You Down There!"
  • Lets See You Do Better: In a game of "Let's Make A Date", Colin is supposed to be a bad comedian who gets frustrated with the audience not laughing. Eventually, he pulls out a guy from the front row, says let's see you do it, makes him sit on the stool, while Colin takes his spot in the audience and sarcastically laughs. But then the audience laughs wildly at what's happening, so Colin is mock frustrated by the fact the random guy is a funnier presence.
  • Like an Old Married Couple:
    • Ryan and Colin, but especially during "Greatest Hits" when they occasionally bicker (all an act, of course). It most often comes out when Ryan makes a joke and Colin doesn't laugh as long as Ryan would like, making Ryan feel like an idiot for laughing alone.
    • Or if Ryan uses the word blue too much.
    • Clive and Greg act like this during the British series.
  • Likes Older Men: In a game of The Millionaire Show, the theme is frisky old people; when Ryan uses his lifeline to make a call, he calls Kathy Greenwood, who is his twentysomething girlfriend. On the phone, Kathy calls Ryan her "Sugar Daddy."
  • Lip Lock: Unavoidable in "Film Dub". One particularly glaring example is from the U.K. series, a Chinese martial arts action flick with the scene being a barber shop. Not only did Stephen Frost repeatedly fill the character's remaining lip flaps with "Now then now then now then now then!", but Colin (playing a woman) underestimated the amount of dialog his character had and said, "Yes, why is that? Why? Why why why why why why why? Why is that?"
  • Literal-Minded:
    • During a "Greatest Hits".
      Colin: Get out of town and take a bus!
      [Ryan stands up and starts to leave, before being coaxed back by Colin]
    • Subverted in another "Greatest Hits", when Ryan replied to Colin
      Ryan: Tell me about it! ...No, I mean, tell me about it!
    • One "Sound Effects" has Colin saying there should be a news bulletin, leading to one of the women hurriedly saying "News bulletin news bulletin!"
  • Loads and Loads of Characters:
    • The UK version regularly cycled out performers in early episodes. By contrast, every episode in the US version featured Colin and Ryan, and only a few early episodes had Wayne absent.
    • The US revival has the majority of the original cast (except Chip), and a revolving door of other comedians.
  • The Loins Sleep Tonight: In the "If You Know What I Mean" set in a hotel:
    Brad: [to Ryan] Looks like your elevator's not goin' up, if you know what I mean.
  • Long List:
    • One suggestion was "tattoos you don't want to see on your partner".
      Ryan: Who's Jake... [getting increasingly angry] and Phil, and Gary, and Howard, and Jim, and Steve, and Drew, and Carol...
    • In the "Remote Control" about chickens, Wayne (playing Cartman from South Park) listed all the different types of chickens he enjoys eating.
      Wayne: I like chicken fricassee, chicken breast, chicken hambone, a little bit of chicken soup, chicken meal, chicken broth, chicken ice cream, chicken cake, and oh yeah, I like chicken cheesy-poofs sometimes but they really don't make... [drowned out by audience laughter] at all. I like chicken steak, chicken meal, chicken potpourri, but only on Wednesdays, and sometimes when Kyle comes over, Kyle's mom won't let him eat chicken, 'cause Kyle's mom is a big... she's a big, fat... [buzzed out]
  • Long Title: The second nomination in the "Award Show" for bitter divorce is: "Oh No You Didn't! Why She's Calling You at All Times in the Morning? Don't Give Me That Crap About You "Work" With Her".
  • Love Confession:
    • Played for laughs in one episode so Drew could make fun of Ryan's western-style shirt.
      Drew:"I love you, Ryan Stiles."
      Ryan: [disturbed] Can we just... talk about this later?
      Drew: You know, I hardly say this to anyone, but you know, chaps would really make that outfit.
    • Also during an Improbable Mission, where Colin and Ryan are scaling a building.
      Ryan: By the way I love you.
      Colin: Stop it!
    • Before a playing of "Infomercial":
      Drew: Britney [Spears], if you're out there with your fine ass, I love you.
      Ryan: Ooh! Smooth tongue!
      Drew: I will not make fun of Britney Spears, while I think I still have a chance. I have a dream, that I will climb the mountaintops!
      Wayne: [amused but slightly aghast] Oh my God!
  • Love Triangle: Seen in many games, notably "Dubbing" with special guest Joanie Laurer and later, Florence Henderson. The games inevitably boiled down to the woman having to decide whether to stay with her spouse or go with her current fling. In Laurer's case, Colin and Ryan decided who would get her with a dance-off, while in Florence's case, it was decided by who was the best kisser.
  • Luxury Prison Suite: During a game of Secret, two of the suggestions for a hiding place in a prison cell were "toilet" and "curtain", leading to some mockery by Clive. Colin and Ryan, naturally, took it even further.

  • Mad Scientist: A game of "Let's Make A Date" has Ryan as a mad scientist who drinks potions that turn him into variations on the other two contestants - Wayne and Colin.
  • Made of Explodium: Averted in one Living Scenery:
    Colin: [about a blender] It's gone out of control! It won't stop!
    Ryan: Run!
    Colin: ...Well, it's not like it's an explosion; it's a milkshake. [blender finally stops]
  • The Mafia: A few scenes featured the characters playing members of the mafia. After one such game, Drew stated:
    Drew: Just for the record, there is no Mafia. And I would like to give a million points apiece to all our Italian-American independent businessman friends.
  • Magical Defibrillator: Referenced in a "Greatest Hits" about doctors:
    Colin: The great thing about this compilation is you can get... artists, that you wouldn't expec- expect to find on-on-on most CD sets-
    Ryan: Are you okay?
    Colin: I'm so excited about this next one, I- ooh, ooh, CLEAR! [mimes putting a defibrillator to his own chest]
  • Magic Music: In the Greatest Hits about "Songs of Pregnancy", Colin remarked that after hearing this next music style, you'll be going out and getting someone pregnant right away.
  • Major Injury Underreaction:
    • Here's how Colin sells being accidentally shot in the side while portraying Davy Crockett:
      Colin: [passive aggressively] Well that's nice, isn't it?!
    • Similarly, in a playing of "Sound Effects" in the style of Star Wars, Ryan accidentally chops off one of his legs with his lightsaber and barely reacts.
    • A variant in the "Helping Hands" about newlywed lovers: At one point, Ryan is about to pour coffee but Colin (who is providing Ryan's hands) accidentally spills some on his hands. You can see Colin wincing behind Ryan, but Ryan himself doesn't react the way his character should. He quickly catches on, though.
      Ryan: That actually is hot, I think. [starts screaming]
  • Making Love in All the Wrong Places: In a "Questions Only" set at a supermarket on single's night:
    Wayne: Come here often?
    Denny: Does it look like I'm a newcomer? [does a surf move]
    Wayne: Can you do it right here on the celery? [mimes stripping]
  • Malaproper: Upon getting a question about transvestites in "The Millionaire Show", Ryan remarked that he didn't know anything about vampires.
    Colin: Transvestites! Not "Transylvanians", ya moron!
  • Marshmallow Dream: In the UK version, the worst nightmare Hoedown had Colin claim he dreamed he was eating a lot of cotton candy and woke up to find his pillow gone.
  • Mass "Oh, Crap!": When Hoedown makes a return in 2014, all four panelists react with distress.
  • Mathematician's Answer: During a "Greatest Hits", Colin demonstrated this by answering one of Ryan's questions with a flat "Yeah" instead of elaborating as well:
    Ryan: Styles come and styles go, but they're all on this CD set, including a long-gone style, grunge. 'Member grunge?
    Colin: Yeah?
    Ryan: [beat] ...Well, it's on this CD set.
    Colin: Well I didn't know you wanted me to act-
    Ryan: [annoyed] You could help me out on this a bit, I can't sell the CDs all by myself.
  • Medium Awareness: In this Hollywood Director, the "cast" are supposed to act out a prison scene. When the style switched to porn:
    Ryan: I guess you want me against the wall again.
    Chip: Well, that's the title of the movie, so you better do it.
  • Merit Badges for Everything: Done in one "Scenes from a Hat".
    Chip: Table dancing!
    Colin: Animal gynaecology!
  • Metaphorgotten:
    • During the "Infomercial" about face lifts:
      Colin: ...Because a good face... blah blah blah.
    • During the "Scenes Cut From a Movie" suggestion of Forrest Gump:
      Brad: [as Forrest] Life is kinda like a bag with a bunch of bugs in it... ya open it, and it all just spreads out all over the floor.
    • In the 2013 revival, when Wayne takes a crack at Ryan's advanced years before the actual scene even starts:
      Ryan: I'm not old... I'm like a fine wine... all the sediment is reaching the bottom...
    • A game of "Narrate / Film Noir" set in a burger joint has Colin talk about why Ryan was lying:
      Colin He was playing me the way you play a fish. [beat] I can't possibly make it any clearer then that.
  • "Metaphor" Is My Middle Name: Played with in a "Let's Make a Date" where Brad played a puritan witch hunter:
    Brad: Harlot!
    Wayne: Now how'd you know my middle name?
  • Michael Jackson's "Thriller" Parody:
    • [1] Wayne does a "Song Styles" to a bingo-caller lady as that specific song, with the other 3 men as backup dancing zombies.
    • A "Scenes From A Hat" suggestion of what could go wrong on a first date leads Wayne to pretend to turn into a werewolf, and then does a little of the "Thriller" dance.
    • A "Let's Make A Date" game has Wayne as "Michael Jackson turning into a werewolf", so he acts like the "Thriller" video (but not the singing). Ryan is supposed to be a Dr. Jeckyll who doesn't turn into Mr. Hyde, but becomes the other contestants. Pretending to be Wayne, Ryan starts singing "Thriller".
    • When Kathy Griffin plays "Party Quirks", Wayne is supposed to be possessed by a Scottish demon. For some reason, this causes him to do a little of the "Thriller" dance.
  • Misaimed Marketing: Invoked; after a round of "If You Know What I Mean".
    Brad: Nothing like a 200 pound snatch, if you know what I mean...
    Brad: It is a weight lifting term.
    Wayne: This program brought to you by the Church of Latter Day Saints.
  • Misspelling Out Loud: Wayne, Greg, Colin, and Ryan sing a song about audience member Howard to the tune of the Village People's "YMCA". Wayne misspells Howard's name as H-O-R-W-A-R-D, even before Laura accidentally causes the music to speed up. He didn't realize he'd done it until it was pointed out to him after the song ended.
  • Mister Seahorse: One "Irish Drinking Song" was about getting pregnant.
    Wayne: I'm a dude, what the hell?!
  • Missing Trailer Scene:
  • Mistaken for Gay: Possibly because of kissing, licking, and miming sex acts on each other a few times on the show, some fans apparently got the idea that Ryan and Colin were gay.
    Drew: And listen, for the thousands of you who have written in: NO, Colin and Ryan are NOT a couple.
    Colin: [aside to Ryan] When did that happen?
    Ryan: Shut up.
  • Mondegreen: Invoked a few times:
    • While taking suggestions from the audience, someone shouted out Dirty Dancing, and Drew initially thought they said "Dirty Nancy".
    • During a "Greatest Hits", Colin remarked that he loved Jewel;
      Ryan: "Drool"?
    • In the game of "Dubbing" with Heather Morris, Aisha describes Ryan's character as a "Hunky gym coach".
      Ryan: Oh, I thought you said honky.
      Aisha: Well, that too...
    • When Drew is doing a "Foreign Film Dub" game with Whoopi Goldberg and asks for the name for a Chinese movie. He thinks the audience member said "Sew My Noodle For You", but it was "Soba Noodle For You."
    • After the "Hollywood Director" where Chip jumped on Ryan's back, Drew thought Ryan was saying "Faster faster, you fool, you fool!" during that moment. Ryan had to correct him: "I was actually saying, "Get the (fuck) off! Get the (fuck) off!"Note 
  • Money, Dear Boy: Invoked in one game of "Scenes from a Hat", where the scene was "rejected names for Whose Line". Wayne suggested "Drew Carey's House Payment".
  • Monkey Morality Pose: A recurring game in the UK version called for three players to act out a scene as [type of animal]; any time the type of animal was a primate, the monkey morality pose would show up sooner or later.
  • Monkeys on a Typewriter: Colin started off a game of Weird Newscasters this way:
    Colin: Our top story, an infinite number of monkeys came up with the Fox fall line-up.
  • Monochrome Casting: Referenced during "Scenes From a Hat": "Difficult questions for mommy to answer".
    Wayne: [in a little kid voice] Mommy, how come no one looks like me on Friends?
  • Mood-Swinger:
    • Colin is frequently one in "Hollywood Director", berating the cast and then instantly becoming calm when he comes up with a new idea:
      Colin: CUT CUT CUT CUT CUT CUT CUT it's too unbelievable! It's unbelievable! It's just too unbelievable! Who's gonna believe it?! No one! [calmly] I know what we need.
    • Or the more common example: [explains idea] YES!!!
    • In the "Greatest Hits" about songs of the international spy, Ryan pretended to be crying.
      Colin: What's the matter?
      Ryan: [sadly] I'm blue. [immediately perks up] Did I say blues?
    • In the "Showstopping Number" set in a veterinarian's office, Wayne enters as a patient with a hurt cockatiel, looking and sounding distraught. When the music starts, Wayne is smiling and upbeat as he sings about Reggie the Cockatiel.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • The infamous animal porn Greatest Hits clip is one of the few times even Colin cracks — what you don't expect is for the very next thing to be one of the most epic songs ever improv'd on the show.
    • There's also the Newsflash game where the clip behind Colin starts with a woman in a black swimsuit lying down. Suddenly, SNAKES.
    • Colin does this often as his film director.
    • One session of Greatest Hits has Wayne ending one of the "Songs of the Mailman" this way:
      Wayne: [cheerfully] Hey, it's from my girl! [opens letter] Dear John...
    • At the end of a sketch, Drew awards points like normal. And then suddenly Drew turns to the side of his desk and coughs.
      Wayne: [concernedly] Drew, do you...?
      Drew: Oh, my God. I almost choked on an Altoid.
      Ryan: They are curiously strong.
      [audience laughs]
      Drew: Ha ha, he almost died.
      [Chip starts dying laughing]
    • Arguably, there is very brief Mood Whiplash in the playing of "Party Quirks" when Ryan's head slams into the neon light on Drew's desk and breaks it. For a moment, the audience reacts with concern that he was badly hurt, but they go back to laughing when Ryan announces he's OK and continues with the scene.
      • Despite the collective gasp from pretty much everybody else in the studio, Colin seems immune to this trope and begins laughing his ass off immediately.
      • Lampshaded twice by Ryan in that episode: once during the same scene where without breaking character (Carol Channing) he asks if he's bleeding, then again during a hoedown at the end.
    • In one Infomercial (the "product" being a program to stop drinking), Colin finds a fishing pole-like device, sticks the tube in Ryan's mouth, and starts cranking. Drew hurriedly stops them, telling them that it's a utility lighter. Afterwards, Ryan jokes about it.
      Drew: Well, he was putting it right in your mouth and he was about to crank it, and I was like 'Woah!'
      Ryan: If I had a nickel for every time that's happened!
    • Another was during the cockroach Newsflash game. Which starts out as anything with cockroaches would but then they start dancing and mugging the camera. The audience switches from groans and 'yuck's to confused laughter rather quickly.
    • In one of the outtakes on the DVD sets, Drew announces "Let's Make a Date" as normal, and said the contestants were hoping to be picked by Greg, but didn't know why that would ever happen in real life. It was meant to be funny, but when he threw to Greg to start the game, Greg said, "But... what's the point, Drew, since nobody would ever pick me?" Then the rest of the cast made Drew feel guilty for hurting Greg's feelings, and Greg had to be held back by Wayne. The producer forced everyone to start the game over, and though Drew claimed he was just kidding around, Greg said, "Yeah, well, words can hurt." Drew apologized, and while the two hugged, Greg and Drew both slid their hands onto each others' butts, sending the quasi-serious moment right back to comedy.
    • One "Scenes From a Hat" suggestion was "Bad segues following tragic news stories":
      Chip: ...And everyone died. Speaking of dying, I've been dying to see the new Bruce Willis flick.
  • Moonwalk Dance: A "Scenes From A Hat" suggestion was "If celebrities had been the first people to walk on the moon". Wayne pretends to be Michael Jackson saying "Hooooooo!", and moonwalking.
  • The More You Know: Brought up when the Doo-Wop game, normally about a death from a completely harmless activity, gets the not-all-that-harmless suggestion of "fishing".
    Wayne: That could actually happen!
    Colin: But not in the hilarious way we're about to sing it!
  • Motor Mouth:
    • Clive Anderson, especially in his closing address.
      Clive: Andthisisme, Clive Anderson, sayingoodnightgoodnight!
    • Wayne can take this in either direction. Lampshaded one time when his Party Quirk was "the more attracted he is to someone, the faster he talks," slowing down considerably when he approaches Drew.
    • Also seen in "Quiz Show"/"Game Show" when Greg acted as host; he would speak gibberish when describing the rules of the "lightning round", presumably to parody real game show hosts who speed through the rules of a round because most people watching have seen the show before.
    • One scene of "Hollywood Director" featured the style of "randomly speeding up and slowing down".
    • Similarly, another playing of "Hollywood Director" featured the style of the actors being hopped up on caffeine, which of course made them speak much faster than usual.
  • Mr. Exposition: In a game of "Film, TV, and Theater Styles", Drew explains the plot has Ryan and Wayne being targeted by a mob hitman played by Colin. Colin enters by saying, "I've finally tracked you down! I'm a mob hitman! They call me Jerry the Exposition."
  • Multiple Choice Form Letter: Sometimes the game suggestions work like this, like "Motown Group" and "Doo Wop". "Motown Group" uses a simple "Do the X" format eg. "Do The Truck Driver", while "Doo Wop" starts with Drew or Aisha asking for a woman's name and then a hobby. Then he/she says the song is about a woman named (blank) who died in a freak (hobby) accident.
  • Mundane Afterlife:
    • Apparently Hell has a PA system and television. And Michael Bolton music, and Drew's desk.
    • One "Scenes From a Hat" suggestion was "Versions of Hell other than eternal flames"; Ryan thought it would be endless Hoedowns, Colin's contribution was "Let's hear that Yentl soundtrack one more time!", and Greg and Wayne both said, "Mississippi... I'm still in Mississippi!"
  • Mundane Made Awesome: Several games, but Three Headed Broadway Star is the biggest offender.
  • Mundane Solution:
  • Mundane Wish:
  • My Eyes Are Up Here: In a deleted playing of "Song Styles", Brad sang to a rather buxom blonde and began the song with the line, "Oh I can't stop staring at your breasts..." Later, he tried again with a much older woman, and sang the same line.
  • My Friends... and Zoidberg: Clive had digs against Canada before the US version took off with that idea.
    Clive: [describing Colin] Famous throughout the civilized world and Canada.
  • My Life Flashed Before My Eyes: Done in a "Weird Newscasters" by Ryan, whose character is about to die.
  • Mythology Gag: There's a couple of references to the UK version in the US episodes:
    • After Drew flubs a "Greatest Hits" introduction:
      Drew: What's going to happen is, Ryan and Colin are going to pretend to be commercial TV pitch guys, they're going to make up titles of songs, and then you give the title to Brad and Chip here...
      Ryan: Did Brad show up?
      Drew: What? [Wayne looks visibly upset, begins to walk away]
      Ryan: Brad showed up?
      Drew: Oh, I'm sorry! [Chip starts to follow Wayne, audience begins to boo]
      Chip: No, he meant me, Bradchip.
      Ryan: Hey, Clive's allowed to make mistakes!
    • Also, in the intro for one show:
      Drew: I give 'em points, I don't know why, it's a thing we brought over here from England.
    • The revival series has excommunicated certain games like "African Chant", but one recent game of "Song Styles" is done In the Style of... The Lion King stage musical, which is African Chant all over again, just a little more elaborate.
    • In the second episode of the 2013 series's third season, Jeff and Aisha got into a debate about Adelaide Kane's name.
      Jeff: You know, Drew never got angry like this.
    • When Chip Esten returned for the revival series in an episode with Jeff Davis in the third seat, they had him involved in "Greatest Hits" and did an 80's pop number, which immediately became a recreation of one of Chip and Jeff's more memorable numbers from Drew Careys Improvaganza.

  • N-Word Privileges:
    • During a game of African chant, Drew referred to the non-Wayne Brady cast members as honkies and crackers.
    • During a Halloween hoedown, Wayne sang about dressing up as a KKK member. Doubtful that this would have been OK coming from anyone else.
    • Wayne's showtune about Alabama in Scenes from a Hat:
    Well, you'll never find me in Alabama
    No, no, no, no, no!
    Because being there, it's no fun
    I get a workout 'cause all I do is run
    In Alabama, in Alabama, in Alabama
  • Naked People Are Funny: Not for real, of course, but invoked quite often in Scenes from a Hat and others. Ryan of course is usually responsible.
  • Narration Echo: Colin likes to use this for his opening line in games.
    Drew: Colin is a mob hit man, who finally tracks them down.
    Colin: I've finally tracked you down! I'm a mob hit man!
  • National Anthem: On the UK version, a game of "Whose Line" has Colin coming to America. Ryan says they should sing the national anthem together, but Ryan sings "America The Beautiful" instead of "The Star Spangled Banner", with Colin clearly confused as to why he picked the wrong song.
  • National Stereotypes:
    • Often used for comedic effect, and most prevalent in "Foreign Film Dub". Examples include people in France only taking baths every few months, and people in Australia ending pretty much every sentence with "mate".
      Drew: [speaks mock Japanese]
      Ryan: I have to eat quick, I'm due back at the sumo ring.
    • Speaking of France, in a playing of "Helping Hands" where Ryan played a French teacher, Ryan made an out of nowhere remark: "That Jerry Lewis, he cracks me up."
    • In a playing of "Weird Newscasters" where Wayne played an Italian stud and hit on Drew Carey.
      Greg: Grazie bene, Wayne. Like all Italian guys, you have strange tastes in women.
    • A "Scenes From a Hat" suggestion was "Opening lines to foreign national anthems".
      Ryan: Russia, our women look like men! Russia!
  • Nausea Fuel:
    • Invoked: During "Greatest Hits", the first music style was The Brady Bunch.
      Ryan: I had the hots for Alice.
      Colin: [grossed out] Sorry, just working with the visual.
    • Part of the appeal of "Helping Hands" is to see the gross foodstuff that Colin's hands will make Ryan eat.
  • Never A Selfmade Woman: They try out something new in the fifth revival season, with the third-seater instead of Colin as the director for "Hollywood Director". Heather Anne Campbell gets the job.
    Heather: My dad was a director so I get to be a director too.
  • Never Say "Die": The game "Dead Bodies" actually got renamed into "Fainting Bodies" for a brief while during the UK run. Fortunately it didn't stick.
  • Never Say That Again: During a playing of "Narrate", Ryan says to the camera that he knew Colin from years back when the sheriff caught him giving his wife a lube job. He said he wouldn't bring it up because he knew it was a touchy subject.
    Ryan: [the very next line] Haven't seen you since the lube job.
    Colin: [erupts in anger] Never mention that again!
  • Nice Hat:
    • The "Hats" game, of course.
    Wayne: [wearing a beanie hat with attached domino mask and huge, white ears] I don't have one, I just wanted to wear this...
    • Song Styles would sometimes involve these hats too, given to all four players.
    • After one "Sound Effects", Drew asked one of the audience members he brought up if he could let Colin briefly wear their hat. It looked pretty good on him.
  • Nice Shoes: Ryan's gotten plenty of comments on his shoes.
  • Nigh-Invulnerability: The "Film Noir" set at a gas station has this.
    Colin: Yeah, last time I saw him, he tried to murder me. But when you kill someone by... chopping off their head, rolling them up in a carpet, and burning it, you'd better make sure they're dead.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: "Multiple Personalities" involves the actors with a different personality depending on which prop they held. This would sometimes end with everyone dumping all three items in the hands of one player, usually Ryan, who is forced to act as three different characters at the same time. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: In one "Greatest Hits" about Los Angeles, Ryan thinks this is how everyone in Hollywood laughs.
    Ryan: [poking his Botox-injected face] Cos I can't smile!
  • No Budget: Invoked several times in "Hollywood Director", like having Wayne play two characters in one revival episode.
  • No-Dialogue Episode: "Sound Effects" is a game where one performer provides the sound effects for another if there is no audience participation involved.
  • No Ending: Due to the nature of the show, scenes often end abruptly if Clive or Drew buzzes the performers out, even if the conflict hadn't been resolved yet. Occasionally, they'll ignore it and continue the scene to more buzzing.
  • No Fourth Wall:
    • Ranging from mild ones, like talking into the camera, to just running into the audience and around the studio, as part of the games sometimes, but usually for laughs.
  • The premise of "Film Noir" involves the players doing their own Private Eye Monologue, which winds up like this.
  • No Indoor Voice:
    • In the "Number of Words" parodying Rocky.
      Colin: I gotta, ADRIAN!!!
      Kathy: [as an annoyed Adrian] I heard.
    • The guys' idea of "drill sergeants in other professions" was nothing but this trope.
    • Aisha's idea of the "World's Worst" thing to say or do in a cinema. Pretty obvious really.
      Aisha: Oh, she gonna go into that house girl... You gonna DIE! YOU GONNA DIE, GIRL! RUN BITCH, RUN!!
  • No Medication for Me: In the "Greatest Hits" about nurses:
    Ryan: What comes to mind when I say Cubs and White Sox?
    Colin: Banana splits. They tried introducing them during doubleheaders in the '80's. It just didn't work, because when you threw it, the banana would slip out and you'd be hit with ice cream. At least in the park I was in.
    Ryan: We'll get you some more medication after the commercial.
  • No Name Given:
    • Before the "Number of Words" about Rocky.
      Drew: Wayne is Rocky's tough-talking opponent.
      Wayne: I don't even get a name?
      Drew: Apollo. Call yourself "Apollo" if you want to.
    • In a playing of "Action Replay", Wayne started the scene by calling Greg "guide".
  • Non-Answer: In one "Press Conference":
    Ryan: Why?
    Colin: Well, to that, I have to give my standard answer: Why not?
  • Nonindicative Name: In one Greatest Hits, the music style was Barenaked Ladies.
    [Ryan barks and pants like a dog]
    Ryan: They're not really ladies, are they?
    Colin: No, they're actually fully-dressed men.
  • Noodle Implements:
    • Played straight in the "Home Shopping" games, where contestants try to make an infomercial out of random props handed to them, and one audience suggested item that they just talk about. For example, one game centered around a broken plastic coat hanger, someone else's holiday photos, and a bucket of onion gravy.
    • "Press Conference" sometimes leads to a question about what items were required, leading directly to this.
  • A game of "Two-Line Vocabulary" has Colin as a sergeant leading two men into enemy territory armed with nothing but a can opener, some barbed wire, and a very quiet goat.
  • One "Party Quirks"
    Jeff: Okay, I got the beer, I got the baby oil, let's do this!
  • The game of "Dubbing" with Jerry Springer as a stripper has Ryan pretend to pull brass stripper poles out of a closet, apparently just in case there was a stripping contest needed.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • Parodied whenever the subject of how the players got parts on the show comes up, and sometimes at random moments.
    • During a session of "Greatest Hits", Colin mentions he can't go back to Jamaica because of an unfortunate "dreadlocking" accident, which is never elaborated on because he has a hard time talking about it.
    • The Newsflash game involves (usually) Colin reporting on one of these. Then it goes into Noodle Implements when he is asked about how it all started.
      Colin: It all started when a Cola taste test went horribly wrong!
    • In one game of "Helping Hands", Ryan is a pastry chef. At one point, he mentions The Great Sprinkle Accident of 1982.
  • Nostril Shot: Done easily and often. One game of World's Worst involves examples of the world's worst TV show, and Greg Proops and Drew Carey take turns to move too close to the camera, "announcing" the TV shows "You're Sitting Too Close" and "What's Up My Nose?"
  • No Sympathy: In the "Weird Newscasters" where Chip played a singing gondolier, Colin merely said "Oh well." after Chip's character sank into the water. Granted, that may be because Chip made a bald joke earlier, but still.
  • Not Bad: The game of "Hollywood Director" has Colin telling the performers their work is crap in every playing. But after the performance of giving birth in a Italian restaurant in the style of the musical "Les Miserables" has Colin end up admitting it was really good.
  • Not Big Enough for the Two of Us: A variant is said by Ryan in a "Film, TV & Theater Styles" when the style switched to western.
  • Not Even Bothering with the Accent:
    • Somewhat subverted. Colin is horrible with impressions, so when skits such as Questionable Impressions come up, he often picks celebrities without a particularly unusual voice.
      Colin: Do you have anything for Craig T. Nelson?
    • In the "Sound Effects" by audience members game about James Bond (Ryan) and Bond girl Tiffany (Colin).
      Ryan: Tiffany, I've fallen so in love with you, I'm not even going to bother with my fake accent.
    • In the "Living Scenery" game with Ryan as James Bond, he never even gave an excuse as to why Bond sounds so American.
    • A game of "World's Worst" has the worst products to sell with Wayne saying he has Colin's book on how to do accents. All the nationalities sound just like American English.
    • Happens during a game of Helping Hands in the new season, where Ryan plays a Mexican chef teaching his son (Keegan Michael-Key) how to prepare food:
      Keegan: [in a Hispanic accent] Okay, Papa! I'm ready Papa!
      Ryan: [in his normal voice] I don't know how you ended up Hispanic. We're from Jersey.
  • Now How Much Would You Pay:
    • Often said in both "Greatest Hits" and "Infomercial" about the CD album or product Ryan and Colin are selling. Always taken in weird directions, such as:
      Colin: How much would you pay for a CD set like this?
      Ryan: Well I work for the company, so I just grab all the free ones!
    • Or:
      Ryan: How much would you pay for a 4-CD set like this, Colin?
      Colin: Gosh, I'd pay upwards of my life savings.
      Ryan: [to audience] And that's all we expect of you.

  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Seen in a "Scenes From a Hat" suggestion: "What President Bush does in the Oval Office when he's all by himself." Wayne comes on stage as George W. Bush and, speaking in a scholarly tone, says that now that he's alone, he can do all the smart things he enjoys, such as reading Charles Dickens novels and the encyclopedia.
  • Obligatory Joke: In the episodes where Ryan wore a cowboy shirt, Drew poked fun at it numerous times.
    Drew: He's wearing a cowboy shirt, what am I supposed to do?
  • Off the Rails:
    • Played straight due to the nature of the show, for any number of reasons ranging from forgetting rules, everyone cracking up or even equipment failure.
      Drew: I never even knew the Village People did polkas...
      Greg: Watch out for those tempo changes man... when we reach the second bridge this sh*t takes off!
  • Invoked literally at the end of this episode, when Colin and Ryan read the credits as "cocky rollercoaster riders who have underestimated the size of this one", and after attempting to swing and lurch in sync, give up entirely and go off in different directions.
  • Off-the-Shelf FX: The early playings of Props in the UK series would involve some pretty recognizable items, like kitchen utensils or snowshoes.
    Stephen Fry: [with a sheet of bubble wrap] Look, either the BBC believes in sci-fi or it doesn't, but how am I going to make 50 Daleks out of this?
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Happens a few times during the guessing games, and literally when Wayne realizes he read his card wrong.
      Wayne: [after being "on Jerry Springer" for "Party Quirks"] ...Well, now that the game's over... mine said [reads card] "I've got A Secret" Episode of the- awwww crap...note 
  • Drew has this expression every time one of the players creeps towards his desk in a quirk game. Example: Wayne as the greased pig herder in Weird Newscasters.
  • Anytime someone's rhyme gets stolen in Hoedown. It also applies to the thief, who often gets insulted as a result.
  • A more serious one happened during a game of "Infomercial" where Colin put one of the random objects in Ryan's mouth and started turning the crank. Drew hurriedly tried to stop him, and then after the game explained that the device was a grill lighter, which could have seriously hurt Ryan.
  • Old Shame: The performers never miss an opportunity to recall that Drew starred in Film/Geppetto.
  • Older Than They Look:
    • Not in the traditional sense, since the performers are merely playing characters. But it does make for funny parallels, as Ryan and Colin are frequently joked to be older than they look.
    • In "Hollywood Director" when Ryan and Kathy Greenwood had to play a '50s teen couple making out:
      Ryan: [to Colin] It's hard for me to get the reality of the scene; unlike you, I wasn't alive during the fifties! [audience laughs and "ooohs"]
      Colin: ...Good one.
    • In "Greatest Hits", a Running Gag is how one of the two (either Ryan or Colin) wasn't alive during an older era when a style of music or concept was popular, but the other one told them all about it.
      Ryan: Years ago- of course, I'm much too young to remember the days of the traveling salesman, but it must hold a lot of fond memories for you. [looks at Colin]
    • In the "Greatest Hits" about pizza, Ryan said that he grew up in the '40s.
    • In the "Greatest Hits" about the Marine Corps, Ryan said he was a child of the '20s.
    • In the "Let's Make a Date" where Wayne played a buns of steel fitness instructor, he proudly declared that he was 87 years old.
  • Older Than They Think: Invoked in the "Greatest Hits" about taxi drivers: After "I Can't Pronounce the Driver's Name" (done in the style of The Bee Gees), Colin dismissed them, "They were just ripping off Johnny Mathis." Ryan agreed.
  • The Oldest Profession:
    • In "Scenes From a Hat": Odd things to sell door to door:
      Ryan: Hi. Uh, I'm a whore. And I was wondering...
    • In another "Scenes From a Hat": Bad parental advice:
      Ryan: A teacher? A teacher?! Honey, prostitutes make twice that money!
    • Alluded to in a "Questions Only" set in a wild west saloon:
      Ryan: [miming putting on a bra] How was that, cowboy?
    • Before one "Greatest Hits", Drew asked the audience what they wanted to be when they grew up.
      Woman from audience: [jokingly] Prostitute!
      Drew: Hey, call me when you grow up!
    • In "Film, TV & Theater Styles" with the theme of the "storm of the century", the style switched to Fellini. Colin said:
      Colin: [Italian accent] I want a fat prostitute.
    • Implied in "Scenes From a Hat", where one suggestion was what Drew whispers into his date's ear:
      Ryan: [whispering] Keep the change.
    • Related: Wayne acted as a pimp in one playing of "Hats":
      Wayne: I'm not necessarily looking for a date, but I can get you one.
  • On Second Thought: Before a playing of "Greatest Hits", Drew asked for suggestions of a city. He took the suggestions of Paris and Amsterdam, pondered for a second, and tentatively chose Amsterdam. Ryan made a funny face and said "OK..." Drew promptly switched it back to Paris based on Ryan's comment and the crowd reaction.
    Drew: [singing] Oh, the whores of Amsterdam...
  • Once an Episode:
    • Drew would switch out with the "winner" for a game, which would often be Hoedown because he was consistently good at it. Evidently by later episodes, Ryan got tired of Hoedown really quickly.
    • Bald jokes. Lampshaded by Ryan in the "Salute to Television" episode:
      Drew: ...You're gonna do the sound effects for Colin. Colin's the bald one.
      Ryan: [looking at watch] Aaaaaand, mark.
    • The revival series has seen an increase in the use of "things you can say about X" any time Scenes from a Hat comes up.
  • One Dialogue, Two Conversations: In "Press Conference", one player is a character holding a press conference, but has no clue who he is or what he's done, whereas the rest of the players, being reporters, must try to clue him in on it.
  • One Shot Performer: Debbie Durst, Kathie Kinney, and Robin Williams all had only one episode each. This was standard practice on the UK version early on, especially in the first season. They had a few regulars, but on the whole, didn't seem interested in developing a "cast" until about the 5th season. Before that, many players were only one timers, no matter how succesful the appearance was.
  • One Steve Limit:
    • Unintentional of course, but makes it remarkably easy to identify everyone on the show by first name basis. Unless you count Kathy Greenwood and guests Kathy Griffin and Kathy Kinney.
    • Also, Steve Frost and Steve Steen from the UK version. They were even on the same episode once. (Clive introduced Steve F. as Stephen Frost to avoid confusion.) But it's still pretty ironic that a show that almost always (unintentionally) adheres to the One Steve Limit still manages to have four Steves.
    • Jonathan Pryce and John Sessions appeared in a couple of the same episodes on the UK version as well, meaning Clive had to be careful to refer to them as "John" and "Jonathan", depending on who he was speaking to.
    • The original TV pilot had John Sessions and Jon Glover. Lampshade when Clive called the two down to do a scene together, John Sessions commented, "The two Johnnys!"
  • One I Prepared Earlier: In "Film, TV, and Theater Styles", Colin is the wife cheating on husband Ryan with the ski instructor Wayne. Drew switches the style to "cooking show".
    Ryan: I find when my wife is cheating, it's best to put her in a oven set at 350 for 2 hours.
    [Colin pretends to get into an oven]
    Wayne: Because we couldn't do this on a regular show, we have a prepared wife in the other oven.
    [Colin moves over and walks out, while Ryan and Wayne make impressed noises with how well "she" came out]
  • One-Woman Wail: Parodied by Wayne in "Three Headed Broadway Star's" "I Lost My Legwarmers" and "Attooorniiieeee" from Greatest Hits "Songs of the Attorney".
  • One-Word Vocabulary: The basis behind "Two-Line Vocabulary", in which two panelists are each limited to two different lines' worth of dialog.
  • Only Sane Man: Several games, like "Two Line Vocabulary" with one performer speaking normally while the others can only say one of two lines or "Weird Newscasters", with a sane anchorman and crazy cast members. It's usually Colin.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping:
    • Naturally, this occurs when the cast has to speak in an accent for a scene. One game of Hollywood Director, Ryan flat out stated this would likely happen during the scene.
      Ryan: Let me just say this Spanish guy has some Italian in him.
    • Another game started with Ryan declaring that he's Not Even Bothering with the Accent.
    • That same Hollywood Director had Kathy declaring she also had Canadian and Swedish ancestry, Ryan remarking that the three of them (Wayne was the third) all came from different parts of Spain, and then Kathy mentioning that they might actually be in Mexico.
  • Another time, in "Film, TV & Theater Styles", a scene changed to "Australian soap opera". Wayne, Colin, and Ryan began speaking in Australian accents (bad ones, too), but Colin quickly reverted to his regular accent and even lampshaded this by saying his accent was gone and had to find it.
  • A subversion is seen in a playing of "The Millionaire Show" that features Jerry Springer as the theme. Ryan starts the skit talking like he normally does, but when he goes to call Kathy, he suddenly has a Southern accent. Ryan, upon realizing this, quickly lampshades it:
    Ryan: Hey, shh, when I talk to her, I talk with an accent. I don't want her to know where I'm from.
  • Another time, during a German Millionaire game, Greg actually mentions this trope:
    Greg: Now you know you have two lifelines, you can go to them at any time when asked a question. Or if my accent slips to another country you may call me on that.
  • From the same playing, Colin was Ryan's phone-a-friend and Ryan asked him if it was A, B, C, or D in a muddled German accent.
    Colin: Are you Swedish?
  • In a "Helping Hands" where Ryan was a French man, Ryan's accent was muddled throughout the scene, and finally he lampshaded it:
    Ryan: We love-a the wine, and we love-a the bready... [beat] Am I Italian or Frenchy?
  • In a "Let's Make a Date" where Ryan played a Russian spy:
    Ryan: Yes, hallo.
    Greg: Hello. Oh, you're from another land.
    Ryan: Good luck guessing which one.
    Greg: All right, I like to eat exotic food. Where would you take me to eat?
    Ryan: [muddled Russian accent] Wherever it was... ''[shakes head]]' No.
    Greg: Excuse me, are you from a different country now?
    Ryan: Yes, but I'm... speaking in disguise with my voice. I don't want you to know what country I'm from.
  • In a "Whose Line" in the style of Braveheart:
    Ryan: My mother was the greatest woman that ever lived.
    Colin: Aye.
    Ryan: She'd wake me up in the morning, she'd say, "wee Charlie..."
    Colin: You're Irish now.
    Ryan: Yes! We moved a lot when I was a child, my father was a military man.
  • Or Are You Just Happy to See Me?:
    • In the game "Superheroes", Brad (Suicide Boy) points out the crisis is tight underwear on everyone.
      Ryan: I just thought you were happy to see me!
    • The game "Greatest Hits of the Chiropractor" had the song "Is That A Bulging Disc Or Are You Just Happy To See Me?"
  • ...Or So I Heard:
    • Ryan often pretends to act innocent after a scene that involves something sexual. After the sole playing of "Meet the Family" where he played a dominatrix.
      Ryan: I don't really know what dominatrices do... if they hook electricity up to people's nipples, I wouldn't know anything about that.
    • After a game that involved miming a strip club, Ryan pretended that he didn't know what a strip club was. Drew had to explain that it's a place where women take off their clothes for money.
    • After a Newsflash where the clips were of Jerry Springer episodes, Drew asked what was up with the fish guy in one of the clips. Ryan described what occurred on that episode... and quickly followed by saying he didn't watch it but saw a clip for it.
    • After a Party Quirks where Ryan was a series of delivery men in porno films, Ryan said he had to imagine what those kind of characters must act like. Colin then laughed sarcastically.
  • Orphaned Punchline:
    • Played with in "Backwards Scene"; one player would start with the punchline and have to create the joke leading up to it next.
    • One time coming back from a commercial break, we hear this.
      Drew: By the way, here's the results of our web poll. 37% said "Ryan", 42% said "With cream cheese", and 21% said "Ryan with cream cheese".
    • Some playings of "Newsflash" start like this, often with the two anchors saying something to each other then realizing the "camera" is on them.
  • Overcrank:
    • Utilized in a playing of "Hollywood Director" combined with randomly speeding up.
    • In any scene parodying Baywatch, expect to see an imitation of slow motion.
    • Wayne was once a sportscaster whose video feed was randomly speeding up and slowing down.
  • Out of Focus: The Aisha Tyler version noticeably favors the celebrity guests over the fourth-seaters.
  • Out of Order: During the show's initial network broadcast, Season Seven was the only season where the episodes were actually aired in order, otherwise, the other seasons were broadcasted so out of order that by after Season Three's original run, episodes from Seasons Four, Five, and Six were being mixed up something awful.
  • Out with a Bang: Insinuated in the Doo-Wop song about Jessica who died in a exterminating accident.
    Wayne: You're not the first girl to die when I pitched a tent.
  • Overly Long Gag:
    • Colin's long-winded monologue at the beginning of the Greatest Hits about "Songs of the Wrestler":
      Colin: As long as there's been men in tight... tights... sorry, I was just picturing it. As long as there's been sweaty men in tights fighting each other and bumping into ropes and... doing stuff like that, there's been hundreds and hundreds of songs written about 'em. From the early days of Greece to the later days of Pompeii, and even now, where people wrestle not only for profit, but for fun, and to teach the young people that there's better ways of working out your problems than just talking...
      Ryan: You mind if I just sell the CD? [audience laughs] Apparently, our movie is over now.
    • After a "Weird Newscasters" where Ryan was descending the evolutionary scale, the punchline was that Drew was lower than a prehistoric ape. Drew called Ryan a "freak" a total of six times. Just when you think he's done, he starts up again.
      Drew: I can take it; doesn't bother me. Tall, big-nosed freak, ya. Now let's go on to a game called "Narrate". This is for Colin and the freak. Colin and the tall freak. [after he gets suggestions from the audience] Bike shop. Bike shop. So you're at a bike shop. Not the best suggestion, but for the freak? He can make anything funny, right, freak?
      Ryan: You just have to forget now.
      Drew: Got to forget, OK. [beat] So, Colin and the freak, you're gonna act out a film noir scene set at a bike shop.
    • In one "Let's Make a Date", Ryan played a man secretly setting up a 24 hour erotic webcam on stage. When it came time to guess, Greg seemed to get it pretty quickly but kept dragging out the guessing with phony confusion:
      Drew: Where do you go to see 24-hour entertainment?
      Greg: ...Do I go?? There's a little bar down in Tijuana—
      Drew: No.
      Greg: It's called the Hot Pepper...
      Drew: No.
      Greg: Ask for Rico. [Drew mimes typing on a keyboard to give him a hint] Oh, a piano bar?! [Drew gets mildly annoyed] Oh, I know where he is.
    • Any time in "Foreign Film Dub" when one of the performers says one or two words and the translation is really long.
    • The 2013 game "Forward/Rewind" provides instances of this, forcing the players to go back and forth through the same lines/actions over and over again.
      Colin: Watch out for that tree!
      [Wayne crashes into a tree]
      [Wayne un-crashes]
      Colin: Watch out for that tree!
      Colin: Watch out for that tree!
      [Wayne crashes]
  • Overly Long Name:
    • Maria's last name in the "Dubbing" about West Side Story. It began with "Maria Conchito Alonso" and then degenerated into Spanish-sounding gibberish, and ended with "Jones".
    • Brad once named himself "Chesterfield Snapdragon McFisticuffs" in Newsflash.
    • In a "Weird Newscasters", Brad introduced Wayne as "Ricardo Balbone Montez de la Vasquez Asabolca".
  • Overly Narrow Superlative:
    • Played with often during Clive's Couch Gag intro.
      Clive: Featuring tonight: England's answer to the Jolly Green Giant, Steve Frost; then, the jolliest man to come out of Canada since Leonard Cohen, Colin Mochrie; next, the jolliest man to come out of Canada since Colin Mochrie, Ryan Stiles; and finally, the jolliest man in the world called Tony Slattery, Tony Slattery!
    • In another intro, he described John Sessions this way.
      Clive: The most talented person I've ever met named "John Sessions".
    • This was a common gag for Clive; he would say things like "That was the best playing of "Secret" I've ever seen, from the last five minutes."
    • In a "World's Worst" with the theme of award speeches:
      Greg: I would like to thank ABC for giving me the Drew Carey award. It only goes to one lucky guy with glasses a year, and gosh darn it, tonight I'm the king of the... general area.
    • When Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? was part of the schedule.
      Drew: Whose Line is the second most popular show on ABC whose title is a rhetorical question.
  • Overly Preprepared Gag:
    • If Colin's the first "normal" person in "Weird Newscasters", expect the top story of the day to be one of these.
      Colin: Our top story today. Convicted hitman Jimmy "Two Shoes" Mc Clardy confessed today that he was once hired to beat a cow to death in a rice field using only two small porcelain figures. Police admit that this may be the first known case of a knick-knack paddy whack.
    • In the "Greatest Hits" about "Songs of Horror", Colin mocked Ryan's earlier pun ("Jittery bug? JITTERBUG!") by telling a story about how he went to a circus and saw a man bend a car. "Bend a car? PAT BENATAR!" and another story about how he used to be a horse jockey and that they used to put sanitary paper on cots for the fillies to sleep on. "Wait a minute: Bed cot filly paper? RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS!"
    • A Ryan example, also from "Greatest Hits":
      Ryan: One of my favorite artists is Liberace. He didn't sing much; he played. But a song style I like even better was done by his sister, Mary. And mariachi music... [audience laughs] Long way to go for that one, huh?
    • After one game:
      Drew: Giving you three points a piece for that. That's three with a capital T, that rhymes with P, that stands for points! Oh, yes, we got trouble, my friends! A little something I worked out in the dressing room before the show I couldn't wait to do.
    • This reached gratuitous levels in the second revival season.
      Colin: We'll be right back to our documentary on people who bag groceries, fighting for the right to operate the machines that make orange juice, in 'Baggers Can't Be Juicers', in just a second.
      [beat as audience laughs]
      Ryan: Oh well, we're out of time! [Death Glare at Colin]
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: In the Robin Williams episode you can tell the rest of the group was struggling to keep up with his high energy, but the tables were turned when Robin was set to improv a song with Wayne. You can visibly see Robin dumbfounded at how good Wayne was and resorted to just sort of miming out the lyrics.

  • Pac-Man Fever: Glaringly obvious in one Song Styles where Wayne sings to one of the game reviewers from DailyRadar (now known as GamesRadar). To his credit, Wayne went with Quake rather than the Doom franchise that predated it.
  • Painted-On Pants: One Hoedown in the U.K. version was about tight pants.
  • Pantomime: As can be expected, this often comes up in U.K. games of Film/Theatre Styles, complete with encouraged audience participation. It might confuse non-Brit viewers who wonder why the players don't commence actual mime performances.
  • Panty Shot: Wayne plays a King Kong character during a playing of "Party Quirks" and abducts a female member of the audience. She slips down from Wayne's grip accidentally and it causes her skirt to pull up and flash her panties from behind to the audience. Wayne is immediately mortified but she rolls with it as she returns to her seat.
    Drew: Hey, what's your name?
    Melissa: Melissa.
    Drew: Not anymore it's not!
  • Parallel Porn Titles:
  • Patient Zero: Very subtly done when "Scenes from a Hat" does a traditional Good News, Bad News:
    Brad: (to Wayne) The good news is, they're going to name a disease after you.
  • Pec Flex:
    • Seen in the "Song Styles" where Wayne sang to bodybuilder Jayne Trcka.
      Drew: She made you look downright skinny.
      Wayne: Yeah!
      Drew: You took your shirt off, I was like, [disappointed] "Ohhhhh."
    • One "Newsflash" featured a bodybuilding competition, with many instances of Pec Flex.
    • Special Guest Tony Cavalero can do this for real.
  • The Peeping Tom: After a playing of "Film Dub":
    Drew: I loved how the guy at the end made Ryan's "getting out of bed" noise.
    Ryan: ...How do you know??
    Brad: I told him!
  • People Puppets: A "Scenes From A Hat" suggestion was what politician's wives are really thinking while standing around smiling and waving. Ryan pretends to be moving a puppet and out of the side of his mouth say, "It sure is nice to be president."
  • Perfectly Cromulent Word: In the "Whose Line" set in a gladiator arena:
    Colin: You've filled me with courage, great gladiola!
  • Periphery Demographic: Invoked; Drew will often talk to the kids at home. After the "200 pound snatch" remark in "If You Know What I Mean":
    Drew: Hey kids, how come you're not in bed right now?
    Brad: "That's the last time you get to watch that show!"
  • Phlebotinum-Induced Stupidity: Seen in a playing of "Improbable Mission". After Ryan flubs a line, Colin shouts, "OH, NO! THEY'VE GOT... CONFUSION GAS!" and starts saying random things. Fortunately, the cure is blue shoes, which Ryan just so happens to be wearing.
  • Phoneaholic Teenager: Kathy Greenwood played one of these in a "Weird Newscasters".
  • Pie in the Face: Seen during an early U.S. playing of "Helping Hands", when Drew hit Ryan with a pie. A later playing had Drew geared up to throw a sundae in Ryan's face.
    Ryan: Oh, you better think twice about that, my friend.
    [Drew relents and sets the sundae down]
  • Pig Latin: One "World's Worst" priest or rabbi suggestion had this.
    Greg: Espiritu sanctu... ixnay on the insay.
  • Pintsized Powerhouse: Scott Porter is a bit shorter than Wayne, but strong enough to pick up Wayn, hop around and hump up and down before flinging him off with one arm! ONE ARM!!
  • Piss-Take Rap:
    • Colin and Ryan, in particular, for "Scene to Rap". Drew even sarcastically references this before one of the playings:
      Drew: Because when I think of rappers, I think of these guys standing right here.
    • In an episode of the UK version, Clive made a similar joke about them during the same game:
      Clive: They're going to be helped out by Laura Hall, but hindered later on by Colin and Ryan.
    • Arguably the entire premise of the old Rap game from the UK version.
    • Greg has one of the most memorable screw-ups of the entire show in a deleted scene where he completely fails at rapping and ends up just interrupting the game by declaring that he's [bleeping] things up too badly for them to keep going.
  • Pistol-Whipping: During a playing of "Two-Line Vocabulary", Colin, Ryan and Wayne are three soldiers in a foxhole and Colin is already losing his cool with the other two:
    Colin: I have an idea.
    Wayne: I don't think so.
    Colin: I do.
    Wayne: I don't think so!
    Colin: Butt! [hits Wayne with his "gun"]
    Wayne: Aaah! [collapses]
  • Pizza Boy Special Delivery: From Party Quirks, there's "series of delivery guys in porn films".
    Drew: That's right! The points are like whatever the delivery guy in a porno is delivering.
  • Planet of Steves: Invoked in a "Scenes From a Hat" with the suggestion of worst presidents:
    Colin: From now on... everyone in North Dakota is named Tim!
  • The Points Mean Nothing:
    • Of course. Clive would never tell the audience outright and would pantomime tallying the totals, while Drew makes it very clear at the start of every episode and turned it into his Catchphrase.
    • Subverted in one US episode where the points did matter and the players acted more competitive than normal. Double Subverted when in the end, they still didn't matter after all.
    • Drew Carey liked to award 'a thousand points' for everything, while Clive Anderson occasionally had 'millions of points for that... just to make you stop!'
      • After three-player games, Clive would often only award points to the one contestant who didn't take part. He took this to its logical extreme once, when he awarded 50 million points to Tony Slattery after a game of Film Dub. Not only was Tony not part of that game, he wasn't even in the studio. (Greg, Mike, Josie, and Ryan were that episode's contestants.)
      • One of the US members of the British show related a story how, after it was shown in the States (before the US one was made), he was harangued by a guy in the street how Clive's points made no sense. The explanation "they are a joke" was met with the rant "You're telling me! They make no sense."
    • In the 2013 series, one of Aisha's between-game jokes referenced this:
      Aisha: Because the points don't matter, I'm giving you no points.
  • Porky Pig Pronunciation: In a "Multiple Personalities" where one of the personalities was Jimmy Stewart, Colin pretended to stutter like Stewart does, and ended the sentence with "Relax."
  • Post-Script Season: Barring the lack of an actual script per se, the last 3 seasons of the old US show, being made from leftover footage from the first five, can count.
  • Potty Emergency: In a few outtakes on the DVDs, Ryan complains to the producers about the length of time between breaks.
    Ryan: Speaking of "two stools", is this gonna take much longer?
  • Potty Failure:
    • Ryan's last verse in a Hoedown about pregnancy tests:
      Ryan: 'Cause when I just went "GRRRR!", I emptied all my bowels!
    • A "Scenes From a Hat" suggestion was "Bad times for that laxative to kick in".
    • One "Irish Drinking Song" ended with:
      Colin: Oops! I poo'd!
    • Another "Irish Drinking Song" ended with:
      Colin: I peed my pants!
    • In a "Hoedown" about skydiving:
      Colin: I jumped out of the plane, my parachute, it failed / All the blood rushed from me, my complexion paled / Everywhere, you could hear my scared call / Luckily, all my urine broke my fall!
  • Power-Up Food: If Drew makes a mistake (such as announcing the same game they just got done playing), he'll reach for his coffee mug for a quick drink.
    Drew: Hold on, gotta get some of my medicine. [drinks] Ahhh, okay, daddy's fine now.
  • Practical Joke:
    • A "Scenes From a Hat" suggestion:
      Colin: [miming looking through a dictionary] "Practical joke: See 'Fooling someone'." [flips pages] "Fooling someone: See 'Practical joke'." [flips back]
    • Spoofed in a game of "Props" where the prop was a bunch of cords, which they pretend to use for the "open the can of nuts and snakes fly out" gag.
    • A couple times, Drew announced a special prize to people who actually kept track of the points:
      Drew: Hey, if you're keeping score at home, have we got a surprise for you. Tomorrow, we're giving away a free fill-up at every gas station in America. Drive to your local gas station, get your free tank of gas, and tell them "Whose Line" sent you. Glad to do it for you.
    • And another example:
      Drew: Hey, if you're keeping score at home, let me tell you about a special "Whose Line" offer we have. We're gonna give away free tickets at Wal-Mart tomorrow for the big "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" Beatles reunion. Make sure you're up bright and early when Wal-Mart opens tomorrow. Ask for your free Beatles tickets; you won't be sorry.
    • And yet another:
      Drew: Hey listen, we have a special supplement in the TV Guide this week. It's the special Whose Line is it Anyway? scorebook. If you don't have one in your TV Guide, call TV Guide and complain.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: In-show: "The Millionaire Show". The "50/50" lifeline is excised entirely, and one of the lifelines ("Ask the Audience") is replaced by the contestant directly asking a family member or friend in the audience the question. Only the "Phone a Friend" stays relatively true to the original game show. Drew lampshaded this a couple times, saying that's not how it's done on the actual Millionaire show, but that's how we do it here.
  • Praising Shows You Don't Watch: Invoked:
    Drew: Welcome back to Whose Line is it Anyway, the show that Hillary Clinton wants to host next year, even though she's never seen it.
  • Precision F-Strike:
    • From "Hats":
      Greg: I have a giant fish head on. I'm 42 (bleep)ing years old.
    • After Drew was rejected to use "Bill Cosby and Adolf Hitler" for "Title Sequence", he got the replacement suggestion from the audience, "Bill Cosby and the Insurance Salesman", and said:
    • In the U.K. version, Season 6 Episode 3, after a game of "Party Quirks" where Tony Slattery couldn't correctly guess 2 of the 3 guests at the end of the time limit, Tony told Clive to fuck off. Clive takes away all of Tony's points ever on the show.
    • One episode of season 8 of the US version (which was actually from a taping during season 1) had Greg delivering two of these. The first was early on in Scene to Rap when he wound up messing up one of his rhymes. The game actually stopped completely and they redid the game from the beginning.
      Greg: This is school, as you can see, I'm a principal for thee. I'm the principal, that's true - and I'm (bleep)ing this thing up, man.
    • Later in "Hats"
      Greg: [while wearing a sci-fi rubber head] I'm a Klingon by trade...
      [mild audience reaction]
      Greg: And when I'm not funny, I sit here with this (bleep)ing thing on my head.
      [Wayne starts dying laughing]
    • Occurs from time to time in uncensored scenes or outtakes.
      Ryan: [singing] If we do another Hoedown, I'll slit my fucking wrists.
      Brad: [later] I didn't know we could say "fucking"!
    • After a playing of "Award Show", Drew mentioned the Cable Ace Awards:
      Drew: They quit giving them out... cause nobody gave a (shit).
    • In-between games, an assistant refilled his coffee cup while he was still on camera, but he didn't notice it until she walked away. He called attention to this oddity, of course:
      Drew: What the (fuck) was that?? More ale, wench!
    • Another outtake on the DVD sets:
      Ryan: We interrupt your movie, Men In Back, while we tell you about a special offer. Col?
      Colin: I'm kinda tired; why don't you take it?
      Ryan: [beat] Well fuck you then, I will!
      Drew: I don't know if anyone told you, but we have a campus minister and a 17-year-old in the audience...
    • Ryan's original IRS Hoedown ending.
      Ryan: I don't file my taxes, every single year;
      I guess it's the IRS a really, really fear;
      I guess that's bad of me, doesn't show a lot of class;
      But every time I do they seem to fuck me up the ass!
    • Kathy Greenwood, of all people, not only drops a Precision F-Strike, but she also went uncensored. At the end of a Helping Hands game, where she and Ryan re-enacted the spaghetti dinner scene from Lady and the Tramp, as Drew buzzes them, Kathy turns her head.
      Kathy: Oh, fuck! That was disgusting!
  • Preemptive Apology:
    • Done non-verbally by Wayne when he was told he had to sing to Lee the lunch lady as a "singing strip-o-gram"; he hugged her for the double entendres and sensual movements he was about to perform. Luckily, Lee seemed to enjoy herself anyway.
    • Occasionally, when a suggestion in "Scenes From a Hat" is a personal joke at the expense of one of the cast members, someone (usually Wayne) will express reservation about doing one before being egged on by the rest of the cast.
  • Prima Donna Director:
    • Colin, during "Hollywood Director" typically plays the same director that calls everything "crap" and generally dumps on the cast.
    • Wayne, during a "Party Quirks" when he was an actor determined to do the scene better than everybody else. At one point, he imitated Drew:
      Wayne: [overly dramatic] That's no good! That's no good at all! I demand you do something else in the scene! I DEMAND IT!!! [loudly fake cries]
  • Prison Rape:
    • Jokes about this are unavoidable any time prisons are brought up... unless they make it prison consensual sex instead.
    • In a Hoedown about being arrested:
      Ryan: I got sent to prison, I didn't know what to do, / I felt so bad, because I was so new. / Didn't know the ways there, I felt like such a dope. / But now I never bend down to pick up any soap.
    • In the "Showstopping Number" set at a toll booth, Wayne sang about how Colin's and Ryan's butts are gonna be the finest chicks at the penitentiary.
    • Drew in particular seems to think these kind of jokes are funny. In one game of Three Headed Broadway Star (B-Block Wife) Drew seemed to be dying to work in one of these jokes and when he uses "Don't" as his word, Ryan's face shows that he's resigned to follow up on the hint and do a "don't drop the soap" joke.
  • Prisons Are Gymnasiums: One revival series ep has Aisha getting a suggestion for a place where you work out.
    Aisha: I'm not taking prison!
  • Private Eye Monologue: Parodied constantly in "Narrate" as the two participants turn to the camera to give humorous comments on their current situation.
  • Product Placement:
    • One of the "Scenes From a Hat" suggestions was if famous movie lines contained product plugs:
      Ryan: I'll be back... to Burger King.
      Jeff: Elliot, dial 1-800-310121! It's cheaper rates!
    • Lampshaded in the "Superheroes" with Greg as Not Hot But Spicy Man, Drew got suggestions on a crisis, and someone shouted out "No more Cheetos!" Drew took another suggestion of "No more shaving cream" because he was worried about the brand name. During the game:
      Greg: There's no more shaving cream! I could go for a Cheeto right now, by God.
    • One "Hollywood Director" on the old show had Ryan as a '60s teenager saying he'd just had a Coke, leading to Wayne as the traffic cop busting them for Coca-Cola possession. Which he held up with a smile for added effect.
    • Repeated sessions of "Living Scenery" in the Revival have led to Colin picking up another person about Once an Episode, and Aisha finally mentioned he was "deceptively strong". Ryan references the actual tagline for Altoids ("curiously strong") then denies he was attempting any plugging for Altoids... while popping an Altoid.
  • Professional Butt-Kisser:
    • After a playing of "Let's Make a Date" where Ryan portrayed "Drew Carey: The Musical", Chip asked who Ryan was, since Drew abruptly ended the game before Chip could guess. Drew said it was "Drew Carey: The Musical", and Chip and Wayne just smiled, trying hard not to laugh.
      Chip: I didn't hear... I didn't get that at all.
      Wayne: That wasn't funny at all.
    • Common in "Hollywood Director", when one of the performers will suck up to Colin. In a twist, Colin never falls for it.
      Colin: What we need is something a little more exciting, a little-
      Ryan: That's what I was thinking!
      Colin: [threatening to back-hand him] Hey...
    • Another instance, during the playing where Ryan and Kathy were a 1950's teen couple making out:
      Colin: You know what? We need something that appeals to the masses.
      Ryan: Yes!
      Colin: [pointing at him] Don't agree with me.
    • In a season 8 "Hoedown" about weddings, Colin said he and his bride stayed up all night on their honeymoon watching "The Drew Carey Show".
  • Protection from Editors: Invoked. In the "Best of Whose Line" special, before showing a clip from the "Title Sequence" of Hillary and Monica, he said they weren't originally allowed to show it, but now that they're successful, they can.
  • Psychic Powers: In the "Irish Drinking Song" about Drew Carey, Wayne's final verse was "And he has telepathic powers!", which allowed Colin to rhyme it with "He's worn a thong for hours!"
  • Pull a Rabbit out of My Hat: Done in an early "Helping Hands" (at the time, called "Hands Through"), where Ryan played a clown/magician.
    Ryan: The hard part is pulling a hat out of a rabbit! [does so]
  • Pun:
    • Frequently seen on Greatest Hits, when Ryan presents a riddle to Colin, where the answer is the next music style. In one instance, Ryan asked Colin what it's called when you rock a goat to sleep. Colin replied, "A grilled cheese." A confused Ryan then says, "No, rockabilly!" The audience groans at the lame pun, and Ryan adds, "...Or maybe it IS "grilled cheese"."
    • In another playing of Greatest Hits ("Songs of Horror"), Ryan talked about how he was feeling a little jittery and that he also thought he had a bug. He used this as a segue for the musical genre ("Jittery bug? Jitterbug!"), cue Collective Groan from the audience. Colin spent the rest of the game making fun of Ryan by telling anecdotes to introduce the next song with an intentionally contrived pun.
      Colin: You know, I once went to the circus and watched a strong man bend a car... Bend a car? PAT BENATAR!!!
      [Ryan can't hide that he's laughing]

      Colin: Wait a minute, bed cot filly paper?! RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS!
    • In the "Greatest Hits" about Las Vegas:
      Ryan: What do you call it when a Smurf relieves himself on your lawn?
      Colin: Crab... grass?
      Ryan: No, bluegrass! And that's our next music style! [audience groans]
    • Brad, during "Questions Only": "Do you have a thong [song] in your heart?" (audience groans)
    • This one from "Greatest Hits"'s "Songs of the Safari":
      Ryan: What comes before "so good"?
      Colin: ...Pretty... good?
      Ryan: No, "safari"! Safari so good. See what I'm saying? [audience groans]
      Colin: Why Ryan! That's almost like humor!
    • Also, Colin in this Shoplifting Hoedown.
      Colin: The other day I stole something, it really was a sin.
      It was a little revolver made of gelatin.
      It really was a bad idea, something I should've slept on,
      Cause I was arrested for carrying a congealed weapon.
    • He is king of this trope, as evidenced in another hoedown, coincidentally also about being arrested:
      Colin: I am quite unbalanced, my mind is not that steady,
      I once pummeled a guy with an Ever Ready,
      They took me down to jail, and they arrested me,
      And they charged me with assault with a battery!
    • In "Greatest Hits", Colin mentioned liking The Supremes (as in, Diana Ross and The Supremes).
      Ryan: I liked the Ethyls, too.
      • Similarly, in a playing of "Hollywood Director", Ryan made this joke:
        Ryan: Fill 'er up with ethyl? You don't look like Lucy!
    • In the game "Infomercial" about how to quit drinking.
      Ryan: Give your liver a break! Liver let die!
    • During the game "Remote Control" about chickens, Jeff said this as a televangelist:
      Jeff: Thou hast befowled the Earth.
    • Also in the "Remote Control" game about chickens, Colin (on a game show) says the star of "Gone With The Wind" was Cluck Gobble.
    • In a playing of "Film Dub", a character in the film gets his arm ripped off.
      Greg: Sorry, darling, just trying to be disarming!
    • In a "Greatest Hits":
      Colin: Ah, there's nothing like a good polka.
      Ryan: You brought her, you poke her!
    • Yet another "Greatest Hits" example: Ryan asked Colin what you can call an Italian nomad. Answer? He's a Roman.
    • In a game of "Action Replay", Ryan pretends he's holding a parrot and says they're performing the play "The Parrots Of Penzance".
    • In the "Greatest Hits" about songs of the flight attendant, the first style was Tom Petty.
      Ryan: If he has a little spare change in his pocket, is that Petty cash? Sometimes I make myself laugh.
      Colin: It's nice to have someone doing it.
    • Many of the Weird Newscasters anchor names were this, such as "Yassir Yassir Three Bags Full".
    • Also when Colin is the main anchor in "Weird Newscasters", he frequently puns a familiar saying, often with a complicated set-up to the pun. Examples: "You can lead a whore to water, but you can't make her think", "This may be the first recorded incidence of a knick-knack paddy whack", etc.
      • Another example:
        Colin: Bars across America were saddened today by the death of Dr. Joseph Lowenstein. The famous doctor who, as a sideline, would make exotic drinks from wood sap, died suddenly today. This is one patron who is really gonna miss that hickory daiquiri doc.
      • An even longer one is the flower-selling monks:
        Colin: Famous Playboy Hugh Hefner successfully managed to stop an order of monks from operating a business on his property. The police forced the friars to close down their stall, which was outside the Playboy mansion, where they had been selling flowers. Said one friar, "Well, if it was anyone else we could've gotten away from it, but unfortunately, only Hugh can prevent florist friars."
      • Or this one:
      Colin: Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer dead at 53. [audience reacts] I know, it is sad. Over Barcelona today the famed reindeer was hit by a flock of seagulls and a 747. Eyewitnesses report that the reindeer in Spain was hit mainly by the plane.
    • In "Greatest Hits":
      Ryan: What do you think of when I say lattes and Microsoft?
      Colin: Uncle Phil. His lattes always made him micro-soft.
    • Similarly, in another one:
      Ryan: What comes to mind when I say "doo wop"?
      Colin: Apple pie. Because, our cook's name was "Du Wop".
    • Puns were a frequent occurrence in games like "Newsflash" and "Press Conference", as hints given to (usually) Colin about the situation at hand.
  • Pun-Based Title:
    • The "Greatest Hits" songs often fall into this: "Doorbell Wizard", "Pizza Heck Out of Me", "Hey You, Get Off McCloud", "You Brought Her, You Caesar", among others.
    • The title of the show itself may be one, referring to the play Whose Life Is It Anyway?
    • One "Scenes Cut From a Movie" featured Wayne and Chip acting out an alternate ending to Free Willy, giving a double meaning to its title.note 
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!:
    • Three Headed Broadway Star always winds up like this (it's unavoidable though, as each word/syllable can only be said by one head).
    • For some reason, Colin delivered the name of a song in "Greatest Hits" in this manner:
      Colin: ROULETTE, OF, LOVE!
    • During a "Hollywood Director":
      Colin: Do it like stand-up comics. Like STAND. UP. COMICS!
    • In "Bartender", Colin began the song by singing like this:
      Colin: DON'T. YOU. MAKE. FUN. OF. MY. FEET.

    Q & R 
  • Quicksand Sucks:
    • A game of "Three Headed Broadway Star" is set in the musical "Quicksand" with the song titled "That Sinking Feeling". Wayne, Colin and Ryan pretend to gradually sink to death.
    • In a game of "Hollywood Director", Chip and Ryan are convicts on the run, and Ryan ends up pretending to be up to his neck in quicksand.
  • Raging Stiffie: In the "Dubbing" with Chyna, Colin was having his leg stretched by Chyna:
    Brad: [dubbing Chyna] Yes, I'm just gonna work out this knot.
    Colin: That's not a knot.
  • Railroad Tracks of Doom: In one "Party Quirks", Ryan played Wile E. Coyote trying to catch the Road Runner. One of the gags he mimed was a train hitting him, a typical gag in that series.
  • Raised Lighter Tribute: Spoofed in a game of "Telethon" about thumbsuckers with Wayne telling everyone to put their thumbs in the air like this.
  • Rapid-Fire Comedy: All the games are this to an extent, although "Two Line Vocabulary" is particuarly this, due to its Who's on First? style.
  • Rasputinian Death: During the "Film Noir" game set in a gas station:
    Colin: Yeah, last time I saw him, he tried to murder me. But when you kill someone by chopping their head off, rolling them up in a carpet and burning it, you'd better make sure they're dead.
  • Reading the Stage Directions Out Loud: Done a few times in "Award Show" or "Hollywood Director".
    • In Season 13, Aisha parodied the typical opening credits in the style of this.
      Aisha:On tonight's show, say something complimentary, Wayne Brady! Insert neutral reference, Jeff Davis! Make joke about baldness, Colin Mocherie! And, end on insulting punchline, it's Ryan Stiles!
  • Really Gets Around:
    • In one "Multiple Personalities" sketch, Ryan is initially looking forward to his marriage the next day while Colin is bitter because Ryan's fiancée is his ex and he thinks he should be marrying her. Then enter Steve Frost...
      Ryan: You went out with her too?!
      Steve: Sure...everybody did!
    • A "Scenes From a Hat" with the suggestion "Things you can say about your motorcycle, but not your girlfriend" returned this gem:
      Greg: Sure, you can ride her; everyone else has!
    • Pretty much every "Things you can say about X, but not your girlfriend" suggestion implied this at least once.
  • Real Men Wear Pink:
    • In the 2013 revival, one game of "What's in the Bag" has Colin forgetting he's supposed to be a doctor and instead goes Drill Sergeant Nasty.
      Colin: You gotta be enough of a man... to carry a purse!
    • The Arabian Nights-themed game of "Living Scenery" with Mongolian sumo wrestler Byambajav Ulambayar. Byamba got the idea to wrap his robe around him in the style of an Arabian woman just to spice things up.
  • Real Song Theme Tune: The radio series was introduced by a version of George Gershwin's "I Got Rhythm".
  • Rearrange the Song: The first few episodes of the U.S. version's first season. This theme music was remixed to the more well-known version that was used for the vast majority of the series.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: In a "90 Second Alphabet":
    Greg: Really, you're just being childish.
    Drew: So childish!
    Greg: Terribly childish! Unbelievably childish!
    Drew: Very—
    Ryan: Very well! Very well, I'll go!
  • Recitation Handclasp: In a segment of Greatest Hits on the American version, Wayne and Josie sing a song about chiropractors in the style of Gilbert and Sullivan, assuming this position as a parody of those types of songs. And it's awesome.
  • Reckless Gun Usage:
    • In the "World's Worst" TV program:
      Greg: I'm Bill from the NRA, and it's gun safety week. [mimes shooting himself]
    • One "Let's Make a Date" has Colin as a "nearsighted hunter". Says it all, really.
  • Recycled Plot:
    • "Hollywood Director" would often involve Kathy cheating on Wayne with Ryan.
    • The revival would often have Wayne competing with the special guest for Ryan's approval in "Dubbing".
    • Also in the revival, "Living Scenery" would often be about getting shipwrecked or somehow getting stranded in some disaster, from surviving a plane crash in the one with basketballer Lisa Leslie, to drifting too far from the cruise ship in the one with Chris Jericho.
  • Recycled Title: There were two (similar, but different) games that were both called "Sound Effects". The first one was Ryan providing effects for Colin, who would pantomime along with them but never actually talk. The second had audience members providing the effects (often poorly), while both Ryan and Colin would act out the scene. They could speak in this version, usually commenting on the odd sounds they could hear.
  • Redshirt Reporter: Many Newsflashes fall into this, especially if they involve animals or explosions. An example is when footage of a lizard running towards the camera played, and Ryan and Kathy warned Colin to start running from it:
    Colin: [stops running in place] Did you see that?
    Ryan: I STILL SEE THAT!!! [Colin begins running again]
  • Redundant Parody:
    • Occasionally occurs; a playing of "Scenes Cut From a Movie" with the suggestion of Star Wars didn't return dialog or moments all that much different from what was seen in the actual films.
    • Thanks to Critical Research Failure, an attempt at a Spider-Man scene has Ryan as Spider-Man claiming he'd turned evil, which sorta happened in Spider-Man 3. And Colin's final line was "You look like a pig", which can refer to one or two things.
  • Refrain from Assuming: Often happens during "Song Titles", e.g. Wayne saying "Hello, is it me you're looking for?" when it's really just "Hello".
  • The Reveal: The premise of "Secret" where one person must reveal a secret mid-game such as Ryan playing Quasimodo who deflates his hump in the middle of the scene.
I went to my dentist, but he wasn't there.
His nurse told me that I would be in her care.
She laid back in the chair and boy did she moan.
Because I was doing a little drilling of my own.
  • Ridiculous Exchange Rates:
    • Constant jokes aimed at Colin, mostly from Ryan, about the Canadian dollar supposedly being this. Started even in the British series, where the audience only got the joke from context.
      Ryan: How much would you pay for this 30-CD set?
      Colin: I'd pay anything up to $50,000! [audience laughs] But... I'm an idiot!
      Ryan: And you're from Canada! So with the exchange...
      Colin: I'm still an idiot!
    • In the Jerry Springer edition of The Millionaire Show, Ryan (playing something of a redneck type) was excited that the top prize for the show was a mere $100.
    • Another Canadian/U.S. example occurred in the "Greatest Hits" of marriage:
      Ryan: Sometimes, it's a hassle, but I'm so glad I'm married.
      Colin: I guess that's why you've done it eight times!
      Ryan: Well, you're Canadian, that's only five to you.
      Colin: That's true.
    • In a Hoedown about the IRS:
      Colin: I live in Canada, there is no IRS / I still have to pay taxes, but I'm not that distressed / I owe 18,000; but please understand / I'm not that worried 'cause that's five bucks American.
    • In the "Greatest Hits" about hockey:
      Ryan: You know what, Colin, I'd love to buy a CD set like this, but I'll bet it's expensive.
      Colin: It isn't. We're selling this incredible 350 CD set for... payments of $1 a month for 55 years.
      Ryan: Wow. And for you Canadians, what does that work out to, Col?
      Colin: It's free!
    • In the "Greatest Hits" about retirement:
      Ryan: Colin, you've got five more years until you hit sixty-five... in Canadian!
  • Ripped from the Headlines:
    • In the UK version, in 1995, the game "Prison Visitor" had Ryan pretend to be arrested for being with a prostitute. Clive sarcastically says how there's no way a distinguished actor would get caught that way. The episode was taped pretty shortly after Hugh Grant's infamous arrest, which Ryan alludes to.
    • A "Two Line Vocabulary" had Ryan as the president who's brought in Greg as an advisor because he's been caught having an affair. This episode aired about two years after the Monica Lewinsky scandal, and is almost certainly a reference to it.
    • The recent streak of police brutalities leading to fatalities of color led to Brad and Wayne doing this in Scenes from a Hat In the Style of... Dr. Seuss:
      Brad: I arrested you in an elevator. [bang] I shoot first and ask questions later.
      Wayne: Now I can't go home, to my kids and to my wife / Hmm this makes me sad, cos this sh*t is like Real Life.
    • A recent "Doo-Wop" had Colin ending his verse with "I haven't felt this bad since that guy left One Direction!"
    • One "Props" has Wayne as Oscar Pistorius, with the props for his legs, referencing the homicide trial.
  • Rip Van Tinkle: In one segment Ryan Stiles has to play a defrosting Neanderthal. The first thing he does after regaining full control of his body is to turn away from the camera, widen his stance, and make relieved-sounding groans.
  • Robo Speak:
    • Colin, bumped into his word limit during "Number of Words" as C-3PO:
      Colin: My pants... metal.
    • In a playing of "Film, TV & Theater Styles", Ryan played a Terminator-style character.
      Ryan: May I have one of your tasty pork tubage?
  • Robot Buddy: In the episode guest starring David Hasselhoff, Three-Headed Broadway Star concluded and Ryan joked that David's going to play the game with his car on the way home: "I, Drive, You, And, You..."
  • Rockers Smash Guitars:
    • Frequently done by Wayne, Brad, and/or Chip during "Greatest Hits" if hard rock or heavy metal is the music style. Also performed a few times in "Props" if the prop resembles a guitar.
    • Averted in one "Greatest Hits", when the guitar is calmly placed back in its case.
  • Roses Are Red: A game of "Let's Make A Date" has Chip ask Wayne to finish a poem starting with "Roses are red..." but Wayne goes off track as he's supposed to be all 5 members of N"SYNC fighting for Chip.
  • Rouge Angles of Satin: In a game of Party Quirks, the subtitle at the bottom of the screen informs the home audience that Mike McShane is playing a Columbian Drugs Baron. Shouldn't that be Colombian, producers?
  • Rule 34: "People you don't want to see naked on the internet."
    Ryan: [typing] "C.A.R.E.Y."
  • Rule of Three:
    • Ryan, during a "Scenes From a Hat" suggestion of "Latin American Soccer Announcers on Their Day Off":
      Ryan: I'll have a cheeseburger, some fries, and a COOOOOOOOOOOOOOKE!!!! [leaves stage; comes back to give another suggestion] You forgot my COOOOOOOOOOOKE!!! [leaves; comes back again] WHERE THE HELL'S MY COOOOOOOOOOKE?!?!"
    • This is also present in some of the games themselves. For example, Greatest Hits usually features three songs, Hollywood Director usually shows three takes of the scene, and in guessing games like Party Quirks and Let's Make A Date, there are three performers with unusual personalities.
    • In the UK version, a game of "Sound Effects" being done with Ryan making noises for Colin to react to, was about a day in the life of the Queen of England. Colin interrupts what he was doing because there's cheering outside. He pretends to open the window and wave at everyone. This happens a second time, and then the third time Colin opens the window and gives everyone the middle finger.
    • After a playing of "Questions With Wigs", Wayne thanked Drew three times in rapid succession:
      Drew: 1,000 points to Wayne.
      Wayne: Thanks, man.
      Drew: That was really good.
      Wayne: Thanks, brother.
      Drew: I love it when you get your voice all deep for me.
      Wayne: Thanks, baby.
    • In "Scenes From a Hat" when the suggestion was "Things bald people are sick of hearing", three jokes are made at Colin's expense:
      Wayne: We need your head to bounce a laser off of to communicate with the satellite!
      Ryan: [holding Colin's head as if it was a volleyball] You're my only friend on this island.
      Wayne: Will Johnny take me to the prom? [shakes Colin's head like it's an 8-Ball]
    • During "Scenes from a Hat" in the revival, the suggestion "tattoos you don't want to find on your partner" somehow leads up to Wayne standing with his hands held out in a suggestive fashion (Colin: "What are you doing?") then corpsing and realising he can't go through with it. Then he ropes in Nyima Funk to fill the empty space by bending over ("it's what I'm here for")... then realising he still can't go through with it. Finally Nyima pulls him back on stage, to replicate the pose from before, only to say "I don't have anything, I just wanted you to do that again".
  • Rules Spiel:
    • The host will do this for practically every game.
    • Parodied in "Game Show", where the host would start to give the rules of the game, but would mumble out gibberish.
  • Running Gag: Enough to fill its own page.
  • Running Gagged: Drew ended his post-game ritual of throwing the hat used in "Scenes from a Hat" after he accidentally knocked a camera off its crane.
  • Run or Die: On the British version of the game "Hey You Down There", Ryan and Colin pretend to go scuba diving and Ryan loses a hand after touching coral. Colin tries to pull him along. Greg (the narrator) tells Colin that the blood in the water will attract sharks and sharks can't tell if you're bleeding or next to the person who's bleeding. Colin dumps Ryan and swims away from him as quickly as possible.


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