Hurricane of Puns

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It'll storm right in and blow you away with a punishing deluge of wittery. And that sucks.


"Well... I had an Uncle Richard that tried to bring nude theater to a festival in Waterdeep... Exposure is usually good for an actor's career, but even so, a cold reception for the play caused the cast to shrink steadily. Blackballed, my uncle tried to recruit from the thieves' guild, but they wouldn't let their nick-ers go. 'Just bare with me,' he would say, but they were afraid of being stripped of their dignity. He gave up the lead to attract new members, and eventually the production's genius was uncovered, even with his part left out."
Jan Jansen, Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal

A sudden, protracted volley of puns. Approach this technique with caution, as viewer nausea (or a lynch mob) may be a side-effect.

In a Sitcom, a Hurricane Of Puns often appears after one or two characters have done something embarrassing and decide to not talk about it. Naturally, every conversation they have is rife with unintentional puns and Freudian Slips that go unnoticed by others but drive them to sheer panic.

On the other hand, sometimes these storms approach from the opposite direction... One person cracks a pun, another feels the urge to one-up it, and so it goes until the ammunition is exhausted and the puns fall silent.

Rarely, someone will just rattle off a string of puns for the hell of it.

Puns are a dangerous form of comedy, and it takes a good hand to make them into something that won't incite a mass groan of disapproval. Doing this repeatedly is even riskier, as it requires an amazing level of ability to play straight on most television aimed at mature viewers.

In Anime, the Gag Series is also famous for using the Hurricane of Puns. Japanese comedy is quite fond of puns and malapropisms, because of how certain words and names in the Japanese language can be misquoted or alternatively written. This is one reason why many Widget Series don't translate into other languages very well, or get treated to a Gag Dub instead. Puns that must be explained usually end up not being funny.

This is a subtrope of Rapid-Fire Comedy. Compare Hurricane of Euphemisms, and see Just for Pun.

Examples of Hurricane of Puns include:


Advertising[edit | hide | hide all]

  • The Hungarian TV ads for the Discovery Channel. When they are not exact translations of the original English narration, they are either filled with a tremendous amount of painful puns (mostly based on whatever is on the screen at the moment), but some ads top it off by being written in verse! There are ads which fail to give you even a general idea of what the show it's supposed to advertise is about. For example, according to these, MythBusters is a show about two men that can't do a damn thing right. Though to be fair, some people may find these ads rather amusing.


Anime and Manga[edit | hide]

  • The English dub of Bobobo-Bo Bo-bobo makes even less sense, because the original Japanese version was pretty much a Hurricane of Puns that didn't translate very well.
    • The same goes for Yakitate!! Japan, which fits this trope like a glove. One chapter was even entitled "Bald Jokes Never Get Old!"
    • Dotto! Koni-chan was the same. The Latin-America dubbers opted by using local slang and a very enthusiastic voice cast that had lots of fun with their roles. It worked
  • The Team Rocket trio of Pokémon fame has a tendency to launch into these, occasionally to the point of being physically 'pun'-ished by other characters, including themselves. While normally kept to a humorous minimum, this reached extremely irritating levels in the English dub of the Diamond and Pearl series.
    • The German version actually manages to make it WORSE and even more annoying at times, by trying to translate every single English pun into German and even inventing new ones were there were none before... OK, let's just say that Team Rocket is speaking Ja-pun-nese in German.
    • Also, almost every single Pokémon on the list has a Punny Name, often spanning languages.
  • The opening credits of Galaxy Angel are exercises in advanced punnery, in English, Japanese, and what's being shown on the screen.
  • In the Record of Lodoss War TV series Omake, they spoof the warrior training that King Kashew gives Parn by replacing it with lessons in how to pun properly. This is the same omake where the wise and level-headed sorcerer is played as a Dirty Old Man, and the skilled and just knight is portrayed as a clueless kid. (Let's not forget the high-elf-turned-ditz.)
  • Used in the manga sequence of episode 1 of FLCL. Some of it even made it through in translation.
  • Izumi in Martian Successor Nadesico tends to use about half of her dialogue to make puns. In a late episode, when someone else cracks a pun, the camera cuts to her rating him. She's apparently a harsh judge.

From the Christmas episode: Izumi: I told Evelyn to marry my friend Chris. Marry Chris, Miss Eve.
Izumi: I ran out of tea strainers, so I had to use this old copy of Shakespeare. Now I've got The Tempest in a teapot. That's trouble brewing.

    • In one case, her puns get so obscure (and reliant on Japanese) that one of the other characters decides to break the Fourth Wall to explain them.

Megumi: Who knew this show could be so educational?

  • Gintama utilizes a lot of Japanese puns, some of which are more or less translatable. One notable exception was a mix-up between bank transactions and throwing rice, which was even brought to attention in the official English translation.
    • Similarly, Akazukin Chacha, the main character randomly makes puns whenever she can. This personality trait is the reason why most of her spells tend to fail, she's always thinking of an alternate meaning for the word she just used, such as summoning spiders instead of clouds in the first episode. (In Japanese the words are the same)
  • Ranma ½ has a decent amount of punning, most of it coming from Kasumi, although Genma and Soun are always willing to help.
  • The 4Kids dub of One Piece. Almost unarguably, one of the reasons it was such an appalling failure was the fact that it was essentially a nonstop hurricane of puns. Even with the most serious villains and in the most desperate situations, every time a character spoke, it was deliver yet another horrible pun. The worst part, and the main deviation from the original as described a couple entries below, was that most of them made no sense.
    • Of course, the character hit the hardest by this almost assuredly Mr. 3. In the Japanese series, he was depicted as somewhat cowardly and weak, but also clever and sneaky enough to accomplish tasks that much stronger characters couldn't manage, such as bringing down two giants. 4Kids showed him only once, having him spend the whole time delivering pathetic jokes for no particular reason.
    • One Piece has always had a love of terrible puns, often related to the way words and phrases are written in kanji. One particularly shining example is the fight between Zoro and Kaku in Enies Lobby, where almost every line is a pun on either "giraffe", "nose", or "square".
  • The official Naruto is a bit more subtle about its puns, and you won't notice if you don't speak Japanese/know Japanese mythology, but nearly every single name, be it for a place, a jutsu or a person, is a pun on something else.
    • Jiraiya plays this more blatantly, using frog puns whenever he can. Especially this flashback:

Jiraiya: These are called frog cards. They're red on the front and white on the back, and you can flip them over, like this! *flips card and waits for reaction* ...Anyway, set your card to red when you come home, and flip them to white before you leave. By the way, the picture of the frog on the card means you'll be home soon! *waits for reaction*
Yahiko: Why do you keep doing that? Quit pushing your frogs on us! We only tolerate it because you're the frog sage!
To explain this, the Japanese word for 'frog', 'flip' and 'come home' are all 'kaeru'.

  • This trope is the sole motivation behind Fireball.
  • The creator of Sailor Moon is said to love puns. Tsukino Usagi, read last name first as Japanese people read names, also sounds like "rabbit of the moon", which is a(n universal) reference to the bunny-shaped shape one can detect when looking at the moon.
    • This is the case for all of the Inners, as their surnames all end in "no".
  • In Hajime no Ippo: New Challenger, one of the later episodes has Ippo visit with the family of the gym's new rookie, Itagaki... only to find out that the entire family is addicted to bad puns. During the supper, they let fly with such a multi-directional hurricane of terrible, terrible puns, that even Ippo - an experienced boxer known for his inhuman toughness - is up against the ropes, desperately searching for any subject - ANYTHING - that will allow him to stop the barrage...
  • Hikaru "Dabide" Amane from the Rokkaku team is absolutely crazy for puns and does his best to crack them at the smallest chance. His doubles partner and sempai Kurobane aka "Bane-san" is always ready to play Straight Man and kick him on the head.
  • The 4Kids dub of Yu-Gi-Oh! has dinosaur puns between Joey and Rex Raptor, dog puns aimed at Joey by Kaiba, and music puns between Yami and Johnny Steps.
  • The dubs of Digimon Adventure and Digimon Adventure 02 played this a bit along with other styles of humor, but occurred less often for Tamers and Frontier. Being that the second-last Big Bad of Adventure was a clown, he was dubbed as a Hurricane of Puns that put the entire rest of the series put together to shame.
  • One Piece, Pokémon, Yu-Gi-Oh!...Those four children love to punish us. It doesn't match heck.
  • Being a story about three boys with talking sentient penises, Chintsubu is saturated with penis-based puns, and to make it worse, events happen such as the characters going to a restaurant with a name based on a penis-related pun.
  • Excel Saga: Excel. There was absolutely no way she would've worked as anything but.
  • Sonic X: The Japanese opening theme, "Sonic Drive", is literally this. As such, it's nearly untranslatable.


Comic Books[edit | hide]

  • The Asterix comics probably have one of the highest pun to panel ratio known to man. Naturally, all translations require intense Woolseyism, which the translators thankfully deliver. Probably the best example comes from English translation of the very first book, Asterix the Gaul, after a potion causes the Romans' hair and beards to grow uncontrollably. It'll give you a good idea of what the books are like:

Bonus: You're making fun of me, Gaul. But I have to talk to you.
Asterix: Talk away, then! Let's not split any hairs.
Bonus: WILL YOU SHUT UP ABOUT HAIR!!!
Asterix: Well, if you will beard us in our own tent...
Bonus: No, don't go!
Asterix: All right, keep your hair on! Or this talk will bristle with difficulties. Go on!
Bonus: I give in! Give me the antidote and you can go free!
Getafix: Try a hair of the dog?
Asterix: Getafix may not remember the antidote... He's a bit hare-brained sometimes!

  • Iznogoud by the same writer as Asterix, has an even higher pun-to-panel ratio, starting with the title of the comic (and main character).
  • In one Sonic the Hedgehog comic (emphasis in original):

Sonic: I don't want to go out on a limb, but I wood like to get to the root of Sally's problem! I'd be a sap if I wanted to leaf! As forest that's concerned, I'll try to cedar through this thing fir sure! If knot, I'll be pine-ing and weeping! I'd much rather take a bough! Oak-k?

    • It should be mentioned that Sonic did that simply to get the puns out of the way.
  • In The Goodies Annual of 1974, a comic inside it had Bill ordering a fish dinner.

"Are you the cod, sir?"
"I'm the hungry sole with the empty plaice waiting for someone to fillet. Get your skates on, squid - I'm starving!"

"You're the apple of my eye", he stated with a plum. "Well, we do make quite a pear", she replied.


Fan Works[edit | hide]

  • Cupcakes
  • In episode 5 of Naruto: The Abridged Series, after Kakashi is trapped in a water ball by Zabuza, Naruto, Sakura, Sasuke barrage the viewer with such unbelievably lame puns, even Kakashi gets annoyed:

[Time for Bad Pun Olympics!!]
Sasuke: I wonder what's in that Wonderball...
Sakura: Who's that Pokémon?
Naruto: It's Kakashi! Well, that's the Circle of Life for ya!
Sasuke: Hey, Kakashi, having a ball?
Naruto: At least you're getting your water aerobics done!
Kakashi: Oh, for the love of God, stop already!


Film[edit | hide]

Zazu: Well, the buzz from the bees is that the leopards are in a bit of a spot. And the baboons are going ape over this. Of course, the giraffes are acting like they're above it all... The tick birds are pecking on the elephants. I told the elephants to forget it, but they can't... The cheetahs are hard up, but I always say, cheetahs never prosper...

    • In the Musical and the Extended Edition the Morning Report becomes its own song.

Zazu: Chimps are going ape, giraffes remain above it all. Elephants remember though just what I can't recall. Crocodiles are snapping of fresh offers from the bank. Showed intrest in my nest egg but I quickly said no thanks. We haven't paid the hornbills and the vultures have a hunch not everyone invited will be coming back from lunch.

    • Also, after finishing his report and getting pounced by Simba, a groundhog pops up to deliver "news from the underground".
    • The Lion King is also notable for the Hyena's puns when threatening to eat Simba.

Banzai: We'll have anything that's lion around!
Shenzi: I got, I got one! make mine a cub sandwich!

  • The first two Austin Powers movies had Austin spew a volley of these when he dispatched of villains in some gruesome way. This parodied the James Bond movies, where James would always have a nifty Bond One-Liner ready for such occasions.
    • The ending of the second movie does this after Dr. Evil's spaceship escapes, leading random characters to shout a Hurricane of Euphemisms for his... uniquely-shaped ship.
    • It was done in the first movie as well, for a different shape.
      • Eventually, after a suitable length of time had passed, Austin's 'love-interest-du-jour' would end up saying something along the lines of 'Okay, we've given the villain enough time to get away by punning', leading to general agreement and a quick exit.
    • And again in the third where it even gets lampshaded by Ozzy Osbourne saying they did the exact same joke the previous two movies. Further parodied in that he used the words everyone else was deliberately avoiding ("Boobs!") but in a non-mammarial context.
      • The joke is that they're all out of context! The satellite was shape like a pair of breasts (Boobs), and Ozzy was bitching about how everyone doing the joke is stupid (a bunch of f***ing boobs)! We all know what they're doing; we just don't want to admit it.
  • Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones features a lengthy battle sequence wherein comic relief robot C-3PO finds his head accidentally placed on a battle droid's body, and a battle droid head placed on his body. Many painful puns about being "quite beside myself" ensue.
    • "She seems to be on top of things." Attack of the Clones turned Obi-Wan into a Deadpan Snarker.
  • In The Film of the Series of Wild Wild West, whenever Jim West (Will Smith) and the Big Bad (who lost his legs in the Civil War) meet, their verbal spars generally devolve into a string of black and half-man puns.
  • Somewhat similarly, Scary Movie 2 has this exchange between Hanson (the caretaker with a deformed hand) and Dwight Hartman (Who is in a wheelchair):

Dwight: Okay, thanks, "Handyman".
Hanson: I'm actually the caretaker. Oh, aren't those cool new skates? Now you be careful with those, you don't want to fall and break something.
Dwight: Oh, that's funny, that's real funny. Um, let me give you a "hand." [starts clapping hands]
Hanson: Why, that's awful kind of you. Why don't you give me a "standing ovation?"
Dwight: Why don't you "lift me up?"
Hanson: Ha, ok, I see where you're going with this one. You look familiar to me. Were you in "STOMP"?
Dwight: Hey you can kiss my grits!
Hanson: I think I'll be the bigger man, now, and walk away. "Walk" away.

  • Much of the humor in the Marx Brothers movies is based on puns. Here's one example from Horse Feathers, where Chico is keeping people from entering a speakeasy without the password (which is "swordfish"), and Groucho is guessing fish names:

Wagstaff: I got it! Haddock!
Baravelli: 'At's-a funny, I gotta haddock too.
Wagstaff: What do you take for a haddock?
Baravelli: Well now, sometimes I take aspirin, sometimes I take a calomel.
Wagstaff: I'd walk a mile for a calomel.
Baravelli: You mean chocolate calomel. I like that too, but you no guess it.

    • And then there's Groucho's big speech as Captain Spaulding in Animal Crackers: "We tried to remove the tusks, but they were embedded so firmly we couldn't budge them. Of course, in Alabama the Tuscaloosa, but that is entirely ir-elephant to what I was talking about. We took some pictures of the native girls, but they weren't developed."
    • The trial scene in Duck Soup gave us:

Groucho: Look at Chicolini, he sits there alone, an abject figure.
Chicolini: I abject!
Groucho: Look at Chicolini, he sits there alone, a pitiable object....let's see you get out of that one.

    • A fan favorite scene from the same movie was when Groucho launched into:

Groucho: You can leave in a taxi. If you can't get a taxi, you can leave in a huff. If that's too soon, you can leave in a minute and a huff.

  • Nearly every single line spoken by Mr. Freeze in Batman and Robin amounts to a part of an extensive hurricane blizzard of ice-based puns.
    • And he finishes it off with a doctor joke when Batman askes for his cure for a rare disease:

Freeze: (after pulling out a pair of vials) "Take two of these and call me in the morning."

" "Surely you can't be serious."
"I am serious,and don't call me Shirley."

  • Pretty much the whole point of the Sphinx in Mystery Men.
  • A healthy portion of the dialogue between Dwayne Johnson and Stephen Merchant in Tooth Fairy is pun-based. Were you aware that a movie could open with a Hurricane of Puns?

"And that's the tooth, the whole tooth, and nothing but the tooth!"

  • Infamously in Disney's Aladdin, Jafar randomly starts shrieking out puns during his final battle with the title protagonist.

Jafar: Ha ha, princess, your TIME IS UP! (traps Jasmine in an hourglass)
Jafar: Don't TOY WITH ME! (turns Abu into a Cymbal-Banging Monkey)
Jafar: Things are UNRAVELING fast now, boy! (unravels the magic carpet)
Jafar: Get the POINT?! (swords fall down around Aladdin)
Jafar: I'm just getting WARMED UP! (breathes fire)

    • It gets to the point where a viewer could easily assume that making bad puns is how he directs his magic.
      • Suggesting to this troper at least that the only power that could stop him is the Red Right Hand himself: Beetlejuice.
  • The scene in Love and Other Drugs when Maggie finds out about Viagra and proceeds to batter Jamie with a hurricane of stiff puns.
  • Judge Dredd. All of them having to do with law/police terms. "I'll be the judge of that", "Court's adjourned" and so forth.


Literature[edit | hide]

  • Robert L. Fish's ridiculously pun-packed Schlock Homes stories...where to begin...
    • Some titles of stories: "The Adventure of the Printer's Inc.", "The Adventure of the Spectacled Band" (there is a Holmes adventure of the speckled band), "The Adventure of the Snared Drummer", "The Adventure of the Perforated Ulster", "The Adventure of the Dog in the Knight", "The Adventure of the Artist's Mottle"
    • Watney's first paragraph of "The Adventure of the Missing Three-Quarters":

"My notes for the early part of the year '65 contain several instances of more than passing interest for those who follow the adventures of my friend Mr. Schlock Homes. There was, for example, his brilliant solution to the mysterious gunning down of a retired boilermaker, a case which I find listed as The Adventure of the Shot and the Bier; and there is also reference to the intriguing business of the hitchhiking young actress, noted in my journal as The Adventure of the Ingénue's Thumb.[1]

    • More:

"...first with the problem of the championship kittens stolen just hours prior to an international show, a case I find referred to as The Adventure of the Purloined Litter, following which my friend went on to resolve the curious puzzle of a punch-drunk prize-fighter, a case I later chronicled as The Adventure of the Rapped Expression. ..."

    • And from "The Adventure of the Great Train Robbery":

"...Homes had been exceptionally busy those early months of '68

Sim: Do you think the puns will ever run out?
Che: If they do, Xanth will dissolve into chaos. It is mostly made of puns.

  • Spider Robinson loves these, usually devoting large portions of his Callahans Crosstime Saloon books to punning contests.
    • In fact, Tuesday night is known as Punday night at Callahans - with the winner's tab being on the house. It's gotten so bad, that "Folks who come into the place for the first time on a Tuesday evening have been known to flee screaming into the night, leaving full pitchers of beer behind in their haste to be elsewhere."
    • In one story, "Did You Hear The One About..." we meet Josie Bauer, a "humor groupie", who had taken to going home (and having sex) with whoever won Punday Night or Tall Tale Thursday. She turns out to be a time-cop and arrests a charlatan who claimed to be an Intergalactic Traveling Salesman. She then let it slip that her father was science fiction writer Philip José Farmer, turning the story into the ultimate "Did You Hear The One About The Traveling Salesman And The Farmer's Daughter?" joke.
  • The Phantom Tollbooth was filled with these, many of which the book's intended target audience is unlikely to get—although probably not as many as some adults might think, since the children most likely to read and enjoy the book are intellectual-type kids with an appreciation for puns and wordplay.
  • The Clue book series often has characters engage in themed pun-filled dialog with each other, often referring to whatever the guests are trying to steal. Occasionally the puns even contains clues to help solve the mystery.
  • In the Sir Apropos of Nothing series, Peter David managed to put the Hurricane of Puns in map form. Look at the maps in the beginning of each book, and you'll get it. (Example: In the third book, "Tong Lashing", the rivers on the map (in a Japanese-like land) are named "Lai-See", "Crimea", "Olmun", and "Mün".)
    • Angela Thirkell did this back in the 1940s and 50s, in her Barsetshire series: Towns and villages in the Barset Shire district include Fleece, Worsted, Winter Overcotes, and Winter Underclose. The main watercourse in the area is the Rising River. There's more on the endpaper maps if you can find any of the books.
  • Finnegans Wake is written entirely in multi-lingual puns- including dead languages- a revelation that makes reading it even more painful.
  • Terry Pratchett uses these all the time in the Discworld series. Nanny Ogg, in particular, will employ several in a row, usually having to do with something naughty. Most of the time they are straight puns, but when Death uses them, he usually ends up having to point them out to whomever he's said them to (usually the recently deceased, who understandably have other things on their minds) by saying: That was a pune, or, play on words, or similar.
    • Even the narration is fully of puns. In Lords and Ladies, he points out that a witch's broom is generally considered to be a sexual symbol—but, as the footnote tells us, "this is a phallusy."
    • When one of the wizards become infected with Music With Rocks In in Soul Music, he holds an impromptu drum session, using pots, pans, and general kitchen tools. What follows is a food-pun fest that irritates Ridcully.
  • "The Mock Turtle's Story" in Alice in Wonderland consists mainly of puns.
    • Mainly of puns? Every word spewed by the Mock Turtle involved a pun of some sort.
  • L. Frank Baum, author of the Oz series, was very fond of puns. An example, from The Emerald City of Oz:

"I'd like to smooth this thing over, in some way," said a flatiron, earnestly. "We are supposed to be useful to mankind, you know."
"But the girl isn't mankind! She's womankind!" yelled a corkscrew.
"What do you know about it?" inquired the King.
"I'm a lawyer," said the corkscrew, proudly. "I am accustomed to appear at the bar."
"But you're crooked," retorted the King, "and that debars you. You may be a corking good lawyer, Mr. Popp, but I must ask you to withdraw your remarks."
"Very well," said the corkscrew, sadly; "I see I haven't any pull at this court."
"Permit me," continued the flatiron, "to press my suit, your Majesty. I do not wish to gloss over any fault the prisoner may have committed, if such a fault exists; but we owe her some consideration, and that's flat!"

Another Fine Myth
Little Myth Marker
Myth-nomers and Imp-pervections (the second one is double since Imper is the dimension where Imps come from and Perv is the dimension of the Pervects.)
M.Y.T.H., Inc Link

    • Various in-universe lines and such, which are made even better because the main character rarely gets them, include
      • When the co-star is introduced:

Aahz: My name's Aahz.
Skeeve: Oz?
Aahz: No relation.

  • cue a very confused Skeeve*
      • Devils (pronounced Deveels) are from the dimension of Deva
      • Pervects (they get angry if you call them Perverts) come from Perv
      • Humans come from the dimension of Klah, and are called Klahds.
      • The dimension of Trolla is home to the Trolls (males) and the Trollops (females).
      • One of the main characters of the series is a Trollop named Tananda, often shortened to Tanda, i.e. T and A.
  • Welkin Weasels is loaded down with Shout-Out-based puns. See the dreaded Manless Horsehead of Sleepless Hallow (the ghostly disembodied head of a riderless horse), the bandit known as Batch Cussidy "on account of I'm always using swear words in bunches", the vampiric Nosfuratoo, and a non-Shout-Out sequence of puns in the form of the conversation about guns which leads to Spindrick Sylver's downfall when he goes hunting for the "steam-driven pistol" invented by William Jott. As it turns out, Jott actually invented a form of mining equipment; "Blasting guns with steam-driven pistons - not pistols - which drive a wheel a thousand revolutions - not rounds - a minute." Also, the Who's on First? sequence with Spindrick as The Weasel Who Is Tuesday, and Scirf barely escaping attack by a bear, which doesn't bear thinking about.
  • Several definitions from The Devil's Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce are like this, but his poems take the cake.
  • How to tell the birds from the flowers. A manual of flornithology for beginners by R.W.Wood. It was made of this trope, with pictures "illustrating" the text (and a mockery of bad schoolbooks of those times). A later edition also added "...and other Wood-cuts" to its name.
  • The final chapters of Cynthia Ozick's first novel, Trust, succumb to a whirlwind of puns on "purse."
  • The last page of every Uncle John's Bathroom Reader (a humor/reference book) has always included the following:

Fellow bathroom readers: The fight for good bathroom reading should never be taken loosely -- we must do our duty and sit firmly for what we believe in, even while the rest of the world is taking potshots at us. We'll be brief. Now that we've proven we're not simply a flush-in-the-pan, we invite you to take the plunge: Sit Down and Be Counted! Become a member of the Bathroom Readers' Institute[?]Well, we're out of space, and when you've gotta go, you'e gotta go. Tanks for all your support. Hope to hear from you soon. Meanwhile, remember: Go with the flow!

  • Joes World is more or less built on this trope.
  • Paul Jennings, Ted Greenwood and Terry Denton, have several books full of these, including Spooner Or Later and Freeze A Crowd.
    • Freeze A Crowd includes some punny reviews on the back:

'ApPAULing!'
'TERRYble!'
'InsulTED!'

    • Hell, Freeze A Crowd has a whole two-page spread of puns on Ted Greenwood's first name.
  • "Little Poly Nomial" (also called "Polynomials") is a hurricane of math puns. The moral of this sad story:

If you want to keep your expressions convergent, never allow them a single degree of freedom.

  • The Samurai Cat Goes To Hell has a three-page war of puns that keeps going until a listener threatens the punsters with an axe.

Shiro: "Pax Mongolica my ass."

  • Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next books, being intensely meta (set as they are in a world of literary crimes where the heroine travels inside books and becomes a police officer in books as well as for books) are so full of puns that it can be painful at times.


Live Action TV[edit | hide]

  • This trope was a constant on The Muppet Show, with some sketches simply being an excuse for the puns to fly.
  • In the last season of Beakman's World (the one with Phoebe), most segments would devolve into at least one Hurricane of Puns on the subject matter at hand. Example: Lester describes his breakup with Wanda the Cow: "That honeyMOOOOOOOOOOn is over! I milked the relationship for all it was worth! I don't know what her beef was! One day she just put me out to pasture! The whole thing was an udder disaster!" (And this is tame compared to some of the other ones...)
  • In the early days of Smallville, Clark would crack a joke every now and then, possibly as reference to the comic book fuel of the show. Somewhere along the lines, the writers decided it be for the best to have just about every character we come across spew tedious, long-winded puns, even within the most out-of-place situations.
  • Mock the Week featured one of these in a story about vegetables. Lines such as 'This plan is half-baked!', 'We shall launch a Spud missile' and many others than are forgotten featured.
  • The "Mastermind" sketch from The Two Ronnies is a premium example of this, where by staggering the question-and-answer process, every line becomes a pun

Q: "And so to our first contender. Good evening and can I have your name, please?"
A: "Ah, good evening."
Q: "Your chosen subject was answering questions before they were asked. This time you have chosen to answer the question before last, correct?"
A: "Charlie Smithers."
Q: "And your time starts now. What is palaeontology?"
A: "Yes, absolutely correct."
Q: "What is the name of the directory that lists members of the peerage?"
A: "A study of old fossils."
Q: "Correct. Who are Len Murray and Sir Geoffrey Howe?"
A: "Burke's." (And so on...)

  • In the Are You Being Served? episode "Mrs. Slocombe Expects", Mr Rumbold says three terrible puns about cats when Mrs. Slocombe tells him about the possibility of her kittens being born - he says puns like a 'cat-tastrophe' and a 'pussy-bility'.
  • The Doctor Who First Doctor story The Romans features the Doctor employ a series of puns about him possibly being eaten by lions in the arena if Nero has his way (he's not there at the time)- "Go down well", "palatable", "roaring performance".
    • "The Unicorn and the Wasp" features dozens of Agatha Christie puns including Murder at the Vicar's Rage.
  • How It's Made has done this with every product they have shown (more than 350 products). Just pay attention to what the narrator says.
  • The Crypt Keeper used these a lot for his opening bits in Tales from the Crypt.
  • Flabber from Beetleborgs used these on a regular basis- and most of them were literal ones too ala Beetlejuice.
  • The narrator on MythBusters delivers dozens of puns per episode with a folksy twang.[2] The Mythbusters teams occasionally do this themselves.
  • Richard Dean Anderson's character on Stargate SG-1 was written as a sarcastic soldier-type; inevitably, this turned him into a wisecracking cynic, which served to increase the overall appeal of the character.
    • One post-Anderson episode features the SGC scouring the galaxy to round up clones of Ba'al. Much mirth ensues.

(As Dr. Lee is at a map with points indicating Ba'al clones)
"Those are the Ba'als?"
"Well, more like dots, really."
(After rounding up their third clone on their second mission)
"We've got a full count, sergeant. Two strikes, three Ba'als."
(And said to General Landry with an absolutely straight face')
"I heard you've got some extra Ba'als, general."

    • Don't even get O'Neill started on Lord Yu.

Who, me?
'Daniel: "Don't. Every joke, every pun, done to death. Seriously."

  • One two-part episode of The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr. featured The Professor creating a ligher-than-air airship. References included being financed by some German investor, Count von Zeppelin, who wanted it retrofitted with armaments and metal plating. "A lead zeppelin, huh? Could be your stairway to heaven." "If I sell just one of these, it'll be a good year!"
  • Power Rangers Mystic Force has one episode where the Green Ranger overdoes it with a combination of his earth-based powers and a friend's perfection potion and ends up slowly turning into a tree over the course of the episode. When the other Rangers initially notice this, they feel the need to get out the obligatory greenery-based puns ('leaf him alone', 'knock on wood', etc.) before finally trying to help with the issue.
    • Way back in Power Rangers Zeo, when Rocky was turning into a plant, he made a pass at Kat using plant-based pick-up lines.
  • Night Court availed itself of all sorts of silliness, including puns.

"Your Honor, this is the third time the defendant has been caught breaking into the butcher shop."
"So, we meat again! Although I would have thought by now he'd have loined his lesson! But I guess you don't really understand what's at steak here!"
(Court audience groans)
"Aw, come on, guys, this is prime stuff!"

  • The episode of Friends where Joey gets to be Al Pacino's body double for a naked shower scene is an unrelenting barrage of puns. Most memorable from that episode is the following exchange:

Joey: ...I'm his butt double. 'Kay? I play Al Pacino's butt. Alright? He goes into the shower, and then- I'm his butt.
Monica: (trying not to laugh) Oh my God.
Joey: C'mon, you guys. This is a real movie, and Al Pacino's in it, and that's big!
Chandler: Oh no, it's terrific, it's- it's- y'know, you deserve this, after all your years of struggling, you've finally been able to crack your way into show business.
Joey: Okay, okay, fine! Make jokes, I don't care! This is a big break for me!
Ross: You're right, you're right, it is...So you gonna invite us all to the big opening?

  • Time Warp uses these and frequently lampshades it.
  • Gilmore Girls has at least one of these in almost every single episode.
  • Hawkeye of Mash had a propensity for these. For instance, one episode has him contemplating a Korean family's ox, and talking about great ox-related movies ("The Ox-Bow Incident...A Yank at Oxford....The Wizard of Ox...Cow Green Was My Valley...nah, that's cheap.")
    • Sometimes another character, such as B.J., would join him for a little back-and-forth punmanship.

B.J.: Get along, little dogie.
Hawkeye: I had a long, little doggie once.
B.J.:: Really, what kind?
Hawkeye: He was a dachshund.
B.J.: Oh, a little hot dog. What happened to him?
Hawkeye: He got mustered out.
B.J.: I relish these conversations.

    • One episode has Hawkeye and B.J. rattling off one groaner Shakespeare pun after another - when Major Winchester comments, "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy", Hawkeye mutters, "I can't stand a guy who butchers Shakespeare."
    • Winchester even gets into it during the heat-save episode when he is staying up all night reviewing the Winchester family finances, because the family's long-time "long-counted upon" accountant "Has been called to account for accounts, the counting of which he cannot.. account."
  • "This" sketch from Saturday Night Live, and Colonel Angus.
    • The "Best of Jimmy Fallon" DVD has his "Weekend Update" camera test, part of which is one of these (about a drive-thru strip club) as he and Tina Fey try to one-up each other.
  • Sabrina the Teenage Witch had an episode where Harvey was transformed into a spy and the villain's main reason for wanting to kill him specifically to stop the puns.
  • The episode of Scrubs "My Blind Date" has Elliot pulling one bad pun after another in the hope of impressing Dr. Cox.
  • One episode of Ashes to Ashes sees everyone in the office suddenly start talking in the names of boy bands yet to come into existence, much to Alex's despair.
  • This sketch by the Cambridge Footlights, read by a young Stephen Fry.
  • The writers at The Daily Show are unabashed pun-lovers. Example? For Jon' piece of the recent election debacle in Iran: "Sham-Wow!"
    • They took a moment to demonstrate to newspeople that overusing puns makes you into that friend who describes a nice night at home with the cat as purrrfect.

Jon: Do we put puns on this show? Yes. Yes! ...Always up in the corner, never out loud.

Thornton Reed: (about Dagless, Garth's character) I hope he heeds my words about dealing with this in an orthodox manner.
Dr. Lucien Sanchez: He will. He's the best damn doctor on the wing, or any other wing for that matter.
Reed: He's a wild card.
Sanchez: But I'm glad he's in our deck.
Reed: Let's hope he plays a fair hand.
Sanchez: He'll come up trumps.
Reed: If there's not a joker in the pack, and sometimes there is!

    • "You have now entered Garth Marenghi's darkplace."
  • The Big Breakfast had a regular feature called "The Pun Down", which listed the best headline puns from that day's newspapers.
  • Frasier, Season 5 Ep 11. Daphne (whom Niles secretly loves) is concerned that if Martin marries Sherry, who's "never liked" her, she may lose her job. Niles has this to say:

Even if by some chance that were to happen, Daphne, I could always use you.
I, I would know of a position you could take...
...services that you could perform.
I would know of an opening...

    • Frasier loves this. In a latter season, Daphne gives Niles a photo, one he wrongfully assumes to be her nipple. It turns out to be his father Martin's nipple in the picture, and the immediate dialogue from Martin includes considering chicken breast or rack of lamb for dinner, and a comment that the weather is nippy.
  • Almost any clue for a word on the Game Show version of Scrabble. ("It'll make a sucker out of you" for "Popsicle," for instance).
  • Also done on the Pyramid game show (e.g. $25,000 Pyramid) for the categories, moreso on the Donny Osmond revival in 2002-2004 (e.g. "Going to Israel? Tel Aviv I said hi").
  • While we're on the subject of game shows, Minute to Win It. The name of every single game is some pun or another.
  • Paul McDermott gets at least one of these in every episode of Good News Week.
  • A reoccuring skit in the German comedy show Bullyparade has three men in black suits, fedoras, and sunglases in front of a white wall, who have an extremely silly conversation that consists entirely of puns and mondegreens, at quite considerable speed for about three minutes without interruptions. You have to keep from laughing, or you'll miss a great deal of the puns.
  • Monk is delighted to get revenge on someone who bullied him in middle school. During the interrogation, Monk unleashes a slew of toilet and swirly related puns.
  • How I Met Your Mother is fond of this. In one episode, they discuss Robin's first love and ask through a series of puns if she lost her virginity to him. Narrator Ted comments that it went on for several hours, only showing us the spectacular and terrible ones.
  • Blankety Blanks (not the U.K. and Australian versions of Match Game) was a short-lived ABC game show from 1975 in which whatever team solved a word puzzle then had to answer a riddle with the missing words a terrible pun (e.g.: "The deer spent a lot of money at the dentist because he had buck teeth").
  • The Whitest Kids U' Know did a sketch that was just a minute and a half f puns based around promotions and demotions in the military.
  • Scared Wierd Little Guys run a citrus-themed hurricane, and finish by lampshading its groan-worthiness:

I thought the audience would find this segment more appealing.

  • Israeli sitcom Shemesh had an episode where Marcus opened a modeling agency to atract beautiful women so the place would be cooler. The first woman to show up is beautiful... except for her big nose. While Shemesh tries to turn her down, the word 'af' (Hebrew for nose, among other things) is heard about 7 times in 20–30 seconds of conversation.


Music[edit | hide]

  • The video of "A Little Respect" by Erasure is definitely a Hurricane of Puns, with the word "soul" at three points leading to inserts of the capital of South Korea, flatfish, and the bottom of a shoe.
  • Relient K's "May the Horse Be With You" is full of these. And, actually, so are a LOT of their other songs.
  • AC/DC's "Big Balls". It's about ballroom dancing, but the innuendo is painful to listen to.
  • Voltaire has many, but Cannibal Buffet is one LONG hurricane.
  • "Weird Al" Yankovic's "Party at the Leper Colony" is just one leper pun after another, and it is GLORIOUS.
  • Skyclad has a lot of punny songs. Sometimes you can already see where it's going from names like 'Vintage Whine'.
  • The Barenaked Ladies do this a lot, but one song, "Adrift", manages to make a laundry list of surreal puns go hand in hand with its wistful, dreamlike tone. Choice lyrics include: "Crescent moon sings me to sleep / The birches' bark, the willows weep / But I lie awake / I'm adrift without a snowflake."
  • In the 1980s, comedian Kip Adotta recorded "Wet Dream", which is one long stream of fish puns, and "Life in the Slaw Lane", which does the same for plants. And as a bonus, the videos linked here punctuate the wordplay with additional visual puns.
  • P.D.Q. Bach has a few. The Monk's Aria from Hansel and Gretel and Ted and Alice is particularly notable in this regard.
  • "Vader Boy", a parody song detailing the events of Revenge of the Sith, is one long string of puns, ranging from Anakin "unhanding" Count Dooku, "taking [Padme's] breath away", and later being "into metal". Lampshaded at one point after a particularly, ahem, grievous instance.
  • Rockapella's ending theme to Where In The World Is Carmen Sandiego is both a geography lesson and this.
  • The spoken word peice Australiana. Incomprehensible to non-natives, painfully funny to non-natives with a working knowledge of the country, just painful to natives.
  • Sold: The Grundy County Auction Incident by John Michael Montgomery is a huge line of livestock auction puns.
  • Sabaton's Metal Crüe has lyrics made up almost entirely of names of classic metal bands.
  • The Cheer Up Charlie Daniels song "Yeast Infection" is one of these in regards to bread. And/or money.
  • "Brush Up Your Shakespeare", from Kiss Me Kate.
  • "The Philosophical Zombie Slayer" by Peter Chiykowski is one long hurricane of philosophy-based puns. Seriously, look at the info and read the lyrics. Here's one he didn't realize he'd forgotten until after he recorded the song.
  • Every song of Bo Burnham's is rife with this.
  • Owl City's music is full of this. Special mentions go to "Dental Care" and "Rugs From Me to You".
  • The Rutles, being a parody band, were quite fond of puns, including this batch from "The Knicker Elastic King":

His rubber business kept expanding
But then disaster
(Ee bah gum)
The price of raw materials coupled with inflation
Squeezed his global holdings
His liquid assets bottomed out
And shrank his retail outlet operation

When Samuel Adams makes me ail
Dr. Pepper's not around
when Sweet Success has let me fail
I crave a flavor most profound
and my mind just turns to Pepsi
when I look, I see, I buy
My Crystal Light has just burned out
and Canada's gone dry
my Yoo-hoo will not call to me
I am a loyal endorsee
...of pepsi, drink it up


Newspaper Comics[edit | hide]

  • Pearls Before Swine has a Running Gag where the entire comic is a setup for one of these, immediately followed by Rat berating the author for it. ("Do you think you can tempt me with amenities like anime, Annie Mae my sea anemone enemy?")
    • In another "Pearls Before Swine," Pig is trying to watch "Gone with the Wind," but it keeps getting interrupted by a car ad, and the salesmen is Chinese, likes the Hoover Dam, and is recovering from a drug problem. The punch line is "Frank Lee's car lot... High? Don't give a dam." The next panel has Rat saying that it's "Frankly, my dear."


Radio[edit | hide]

  • Abbot And Costello full stop. It was the basis of most of their routines.
  • Most sitcoms on BBC Radio 4 depend heavily on puns and wordplay. I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue (a Panel Game) has a whole game dedicated to these, in which contestants are told to come up with new definitions for words. Here's one which is technically broadcastable but utterly, utterly filthy:

Define 'countryside': Killing Piers Morgan.[3]

    • The game on I'm Sorry... is called "Uxbridge English Dictionary", itself a play on The Oxford English Dictionary, Oxbridge and the similarly named unremarkable town of Uxbridge.
    • Sound Charades is often a Hurricane of Puns as well, especially when Barry and Graeme are being Hamish and Dougal. The Hamish And Dougal Spin-Off series is even worse.
    • Several of the answers from these rounds were later released in book form.
    • There's another round called Film Club/Book Club/Songbook, in which the teams construct puns based on a profession. In "Cheesemonger's Songbook", Graeme Garden blew everyone away with "Que cheddar cheddar, whatever will brie will brie, the feta's not ours to see".
  • Every episode of The Very World of Milton Jones is one of these:

Angel: I heard that you had an attachment?
Milton: Yes, it was a polythene hood I could put on the back of my cape.
Angel: No, no, I meant you had a romantic interest.
Milton: Oh yes. It was the terrible dictator's daughter, Rose.
(scene change)
Milton: Rose, I have to tell you. Your father is a cruel and terrible man.
Rose: (gasp) That is a falsehood!
Milton: No, it's just made of polythene. Listen...

  • Hello Cheeky was mostly made up out of puns and quick sketches, with some parody songs thrown in for good measure.

Tim: Waiter, this steak's off!
Barry: I'll get its hat and coat, sir.
Tim: I want the manager!
Barry: You shouldn't bother with him, he tastes even worse.

  • François Pérusse's Deux minutes du peuple sketches take this trope Up to Eleven. (One "Sexe Conseil" segment includes thirteen cigarette-related puns in just under a minute.)


Role Playing Games[edit | hide]

  • Munchkin. Fire arms? They're arms on fire. The Two-Handed Sword is a sword with two hands. They only get worse from here, like the "stoned golem".
    • Super Munchkin (the superhero-themed version) has some of the most groan-worthy monsters released for Munchkin. How about the Punster ("He Punishes you!"), or the Office supplies man ("A staple of comic fiction!" Oh and he has staples for arms...)?
    • Munchkin Cthulhu has a string of punny derivatives of the Necronomicon, such as the Necrocomicon and the Necrotelecom.
    • The classic Running Gag in Munchkin is "You start out as a Level 1 human with no Class (hehe)." Munchkin Fu got to improve on this, with "You start out with no Class and no Style."
  • Games Workshop and their entire Lizardman range. Tuini-Huini, the Slann Mage-Lord Chilipepa, the Skinks Copaqetl and Huezigon and the infamous Lustrian crater named Guacamole (holy guacamole). With Tiqtaq-to, it moved right into Pun territory.
    • Later, they added Kroq-Gar and his Carnosaur Grymloq (Later magazine articles also added heroes riding dinosaurs named Slaq and Zwup),
    • "Forgotten Skaven Trope-things? Quick quick! Bring out the Ratling Guns worthless slaves!"
  • The Horror game Don't Rest Your Head is quite fond of giving punny names to monsters. The Paperboys and the Ladies in Hating come to mind. Despite the lame puns, these are incredibly creepy horrors.
    • A sizeable amount of the content in the Don't Rest Your Head supplement Don't Lose Your Mind. Most of the book is devoted to an A to M and a Z to N list of insanity powers, each and every one of which ahs at least one pun in the "What Are You Becoming" section. The puns are pretty bad, Agony Ant and Yes Man, but the monsters they belong to are incredibly creepy, when not downright scary, plus, since the character is turning into these things, there's an added layer of body horror.
    • It also comes up outside of names for Nightmares. For instance, there's the High School—which is literally high, being housed in the Mad City's tallest buildings—and is a finishing school—in that anyone who ends up there is pretty well finished, either turning into one of the aforementioned Ladies In Hating, or just disappearing. Meanwhile, Mother When has a yardstick which she uses to cut students down to size when they don't measure up. It's creepier in context.


Theater[edit | hide]

  • You won't find a Shakespeare play that doesn't seriously overindulge in puns, regardless of genre, although many of the puns do not translate to a modern audience unless you read the annotated plays, since they rely on outdated slang (much of it sexual) and Forgotten Tropes.
    • Some of Shakespeare's best examples include the scenes between Petruchio and Katherina in The Taming of the Shrew and between Benedick and Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing.
    • The opening of Romeo and Juliet is riddled with puns, and it's all downhill after that.
    • Even Othello, for all that it's a deeply gloomy play about jealousy, madness and prejudice, is full of this sort of stuff. Iago tends to be the worst offender, including the whole "'tis a common thing" speech, which gets a whole lot more Married... with Children when you know that 'thing' was a semi-vulgar slang term for vagina. The film version with Kenneth Branagh just ups the ridiculousness, with a pun about trifles (again genital-related) that's punctuated by Branagh's face suddenly appearing in close-up as he bellows "A TRIFLE!". (This may well also qualify as a Crowning Moment of Funny, depending on one's state of mind at the time).
  • Each refrain of "Brush Up Your Shakespeare" from the musical Kiss Me Kate includes at least one pun on the title of a Shakespeare play.
  • Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street: The number "A Little Priest" is a wickedly funny string of allusions to personalities and flavors as the title character and Mrs. Lovett figure out how they'll dispose of Pirelli's body and make a tidy profit out of future customers, at the expense of the rival pie shop across the way.
  • Don Juan and Miguel, a pair of famous Renaissance Faire actors and swordfighters, make dozens of puns during their shows. Most of them are good, but a lot of them are just cheesy.
  • Gilbert and Sullivan's "Magnet Hung in a Hardware Store", from Patience has a whole verse of relentless hardware related puns about such things as needles opening their eyes in surprise and the nails going on their heads.
  • In Of Thee I Sing, the revelation that Wintergreen is about to be a father leads to the song "Posterity Is Just Around The Corner" (a play on a famous remark of then-President Herbert Hoover). The song's lyrics contain a few more infantile puns.
  • The Transformers Animated/Transformers: TransTech script-reading play "Bee in the City" had puns regarding Isaac Sumdac's Bi-directional Unified Transit Terminal. Bumblebee at some point notices this.
  • Harvard's Hasty Pudding Society's annual Theatrical always has one of these in front of the curtain. It's usually during a scene change, but even if there's no change, there's still the hurricane.
  • Evil Dead: The Musical, features a Hurricane of Puns after Ash chainsaws his possessed hand off. His Deadite sister then starts mocking him with a barrage of ridiculous Puns on 'hands'.
  • Older Than Feudalism: Ancient Greeks loved puns. Aristophanes regularly threw hurricanes into his comedies, notably The Wasps. It's up to the translator how many make it through and in what form. Most puns depend not just on the language, but also people, places, and events known to the audience. A good translator can still pun the shit out of a scene when it's called for.


Video Games[edit | hide]

  • Featured several times in the comic MMORPG Kingdom of Loathing. Several encounters and item descriptions tend to degenerate into a Hurricane of Puns. For example, the description for Gazpacho's Glacial Grimoire is loaded with plays on names of brands of refrigerator.
    • Lampshaded, of course, in the confrontation with the Big Bad. The, uh, puns in general, I mean, not specifically the GGG description.

"On the dais? On the dais? Rock me, on the DAIS?"

  • (sort of:) Ask any Bemani fan about GETIT?! It's enough to give a guy a headache.
  • The first two Discworld adventure games have these in abundance. The first game in particular has a couple of quick-fire conversations that absolutely epitomise this trope, cramming in an absolutely staggering number of puns, frequently all about the same thing.
  • Ratchet and Clank: Going Commando had a one-shot superhero/wrestler character named "The Mathematician", who spoke in nothing but math puns:

Mathematician: Nobody - I MEAN NOBODY - can solve The Mathematician!
Ratchet: I guess all the good names were taken?
Mathematician: Watch yer mouth, zero... before The Mathematician SUBTRACTS YOUR HEAD FROM YOUR SHOULDERS!

  • Speaking of math puns, this page is incomplete without some mention of Sho Minamimoto.

Sho: "You zetta sons of digits!"

  • The Quest for Glory series of adventure/rpg games loves these.
    • Keapon Laffin from QFG 2 has an entire dialogue made of this
  • A regular feature of pretty much all of Artix Entertainment's games. If you don't like this trope, they will make Your Head Asplode. Every single quest includes at least one pun (or at least a reference to some other movie/game/book/whatever) and every single knight in Oaklore Keep (except for Sir Baumbard, who says that he was never officially a knight there because "Sir" didn't work with his name) has a pun in their name (Sir Prize, Sir Charge, Sir Lee, Sir Vivor...) describing their personality. There's even a joke on a joke when Ash Dragonblade, a young boy in the town of Falconreach, laments that he'll never become a knight because his name isn't even a bad pun.
    • Besides Oaklore, there's the Mill quest (basically a Multi Mook Melee followed by a really mind-scarring string of puns relating to trees), the Sand Witch (as bad as it sounds), and the names of half the quests and 75% of the weapons. If it's in Dragon Fable and it's not a pun, it's probably a Shout-Out.
    • Their love of puns is lampshaded in a special voiced quest when George Lowe (Yes, the voice actor) complains about the over-use and and transforms into... Lowe-viathian, a hulk like monster.
      • In ArchKnight, a necromancer starts yelling at Ash for an especially dreadful string of puns.
    • Adventure Quest is just as bad; the monster description for the Dark Knight is:

It sure is (*coughs*) dark at night. (This is why Demento does not let me write descriptions)

  • The Ace Attorney series has a buttload of these instances, the most obvious being Apollo Justice before every case (and sometimes in between): "Here comes Justice!"
    • Moe also has a good amount of puns in his speech in the second game, but it's mostly justified, being that he's a clown. Though it's also partially played straight, as if you really get Moe going during testimony, the judge will punish you for doing it.
  • Shuji Ikutsuki of Persona 3 performs one of these just for the hell of it in one of the "secret" recordings you can find in FES.
    • In Persona 4 Teddie deals out unBEARably bad puns.
    • Shin Megami Tensei in general, especially when Mara is around, provoking a storm of rapid fire puns due to its form.
  • Just about every name of the plants in Plants vs. Zombies is a pun on something. Even when it's simply the actual name of the plant. The Sunflowers? Produce sun. Squash? They squash zombies. Also, there's the Zomboni.
  • Sven T. Uncommon, the boss of Chapter 3 in Popful Mail (Working Designs' Sega CD translation) spouts off a bunch of references to Arnold Schwarzenegger movies during the gang's first encounter with him:

Sven: Listen to me now and fear me pretty soon! I am no Kindergarten Cop! The sissy-man Venuncio could not teach you a lesson, so I have come to terminate you! I am the Predator, and you are my prey! This little skirmish will be your last action, hero person! It's judgement day!

  • Doctor Morris in Advance Wars: Days Of Ruin, all bad, he makes a decent joke in the epilogue, to the surprise of Will.
  • In the LucasArts game The Dig, the protagonist discovers a "light bridge." Cue a storm of light puns, including light snack, light beer and lighthouse.
  • Every single boo (save King Boo) in Luigis Mansion has a name-based pun. Yes, all fifty of them.
  • There is a truly horrific/hilarious sex scene in Tsukihime that's completely made up of seafood (in the original Japanese) or Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream Flavors (in the English translation) metaphors.
  • Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime contains many, many puns, as does Dragon Quest IX. Dragon Quest VIII started it first.
    • Hell, play any Dragon Quest game and the enemies' names are a veritable Category 5 example of this trope.
  • Super Mario 64, and likely Sunshine and Galaxy star/shine mission names. A-maze-ing Emergency Exit and Eye to Eye in the Secret Room' anyone?
  • Every single death in Sierra's King's Quest series. For all seven games.
  • The amount of hand-related puns in RuneScape is just out of hand.
  • Konami's American manuals during the NES and SNES days were pretty notorious for this, especially with the names of the enemy characters. For example: the Dancing Spectres in Super Castlevania IV are named "Paula Abghoul" and "Fred Askare", while the bad guy of Snake's Revenge is identified as "Higharolla Kockamamie".
  • Speaking of Castlevania, the ending to the original game hits you with doubtless the worst hurricane of punny names in the history of the WORLD: Boris Karloffice, Christopher Bee, Trans Fisher, etc.
  • Many teams in the original Backyard Soccer have names that are puns.
  • Many of the parts in Spore have punny names, such as Pb Zeppelin.
  • In Final Fantasy X a trend started that whenever a character used an attack for the first time in battle they'd use some witty pun related to the attack. Except Yuna, Auron and Kimahri though.

Tidus: (using "Delay Attack") Take a number, buddy.
Wakka: (using "Sleep Attack") Lights out, buster!
Lulu: (using Bio) This might help your complexion.

    • Even more so in Final Fantasy X-2 where the YRP rattle off a load of puns usually in every battle.

Rikku: (Spherechanges into a Samurai) Crouching tiger, hidden Rikku.
Yuna: (Spherechanges into Floral Fallal) Flower power!
Paine: (Using Blizzard) Ice, Ice, baby!

Junpei: (So, ladder, we meet again)
Junpei: (Once again, I gaze upon this stately ladder.) "Ladder? I don't even know her!"
Junpei: (Most. Original. Joke. Ever.)
Junpei: (As I gaze into the ladder, the ladder gazes into me.) "Hey, so did you hear what that shopkeeper said after his ladder got stolen?" "No, what'd he say?" "Further steps will be taken."
Junpei: (...And that's why I have no friends.)
Junpei: (The ladder watches me. I sense that it finds me...wanting.) "So this friend of mine fell all the way down a 15-foot ladder." "Wow, that's pretty bad. How's he doing?" "Oh, he's all right, but he's feeling pretty rung out by the whole experience."
Junpei: (I should be writing these down... They're comedy gold!)
Junpei: (I think the ladder is following me.) "Trying to keep up with all the latest stiles has me all rung out..." "Well, if it's a choice between being a step for someone else, and being a real social climber, I'll take the ladder!"
Junpei: "What do you call a secondary ladder covered in people?" "A full B-ladder!" (Okay, I need to stop doing these before I hurt myself.)

  • Dead Rising 2 has Chef Antione who will not stop making terrible cooking puns. He has at least one tied to each and every attack.

Antione: "So sit, relax, Antione will make you... DINNER!"


Web Original[edit | hide]

"Aradog, Gnarls Bark-ley, Canine Wanwan, Tinkles, Biter, Tanzania, Bouncer, Wolverine, Owner ('cuz I think it'd be funny if someone said "Hey, this is my owner"), Treebeard, Bubbles the Nerdfighting Puppy, Leghumper, Boxxy, Catbain, Eater, Pupcorn, Littlefoot, Pup the Magic Dragon, Doggie Houndser, Puppy Longstocking, Bilby, Secret Werewolf, The Puppymaster, Ruffles, Chocobo, Jasper, Cat, Ruffrider, The Brooklyn Doggers, Superscooper, Mightyena, Gooser, Spank, Yips Ahoy, Bungie, Scooter, RoboCop, Phoenix Bite, Annie's Boobs, MacArthur Bark, Raise the Woof, Sirius, Collieflower, Barkimaeus, Red XIII, Kibbletz, DogBrothers, Bowser, Drools Verne, Fetcher Reede, Dunepuppy, Howl Manager, Anal Pug, Arfie Bunker, Horse Whiskerer, Tick Magnet, Admiral Puppystein, Peter Barker, Monkey D. Ruffy, Furderboat, Minute, Beowoof, Falcor, Joe Rogan, Tinkler, Pepsi and Bahamutt."


Web Comics[edit | hide]

  • Irregular Webcomic is arguably the worst (or best) offender. If David Morgan-Mar stops managing to do amazing things with horrible puns, it will be a sign of the apocalypse.
  • The entire Deegan family in Dominic Deegan, Oracle For Hire specializes in this (though every character has used puns at some point or another) - even the "black sheep" Jacob can't resist pulling one out every once in a while. Most famous example, however, probably comes from the otherwise Straight Man, Sir Siegfried's, use of his "Knight Vision" to locate two thieves hiding in the dark - by the sound of them GROANING at the pun.
    • There's even an instance where two characters are having a very terse, serious argument, and suddenly their lines start containing electricity references, with neither realizing it. This prompts a nearby lighting mage (called the Maestro because he's "a great conductor") to hit them with a small lightning bolt.
    • There is also an instance after the Storm of Souls arc where Dominic and his girlfriend Luna are making puns about the leg he has lost ("Your words wound me in ways that will never HEEL" and the like), until a loud "OW!" is heard from downstairs, prompting Luna (and in some cases, the reader) to think the puns were getting so bad they physically hurt someone (Turns out, however, that it was Dominic's mom getting zapped).

Luna: Perhaps we went "toe" far?


Western Animation[edit | hide]

  • Captain Hero of Drawn Together, when fighting his giant, mentally retarded son at a petting zoo, uses a sexual entendre for every animal that the giant throws at him, which includes beavers, a donkey, kittens, and a rooster. He specifically makes it obvious with the rooster, proudly exclaiming, "I'll wrap my hands around this cock and squeeze it until it explodes way too early and rolls over and falls asleep...leaving me unsatisfied and alone." Also an example of Metaphorgotten.
    • In the episode where Xander, Clara and Foxy Love manage to stop Strawberry Shortcake parody Strawberry Sweetcake's genocidal rampage, it leads to this lame pun-filled moment:

Xander (to Strawberry Shortcake): "You're gonna be spending a CHOCO-LOTTA time locked up behind candy bars!"
Clara (whispering bitterly): "God dammit, I hate you."

  • Beetlejuice: the Animated Series built entire sequences around puns that became somewhat surreal. The lead character successfully performed a short series of tasks, proclaim that he was 'on a roll'... and his feet flew out from under him as a huge buttered roll appeared. Hell, the show could be called "Puns, the Animated Series". You're hard pressed to find a line that isn't punny.
    • Usually Beetlejuice did this on purpose except for one episode with a situation where BJ's puns became uncontrollable literal metaphors until it was resolved. Example: in this situation, "coming apart at the seams" isn't a good thing to say.
  • Kim Possible used a bucket load of math puns for the math-based villain the Mathter in "Mathter and Fervent." Examples include: Hego yelling "Fore!" right before the Mathter throws the number four at Kim, the Mathter's minions being called Coefficients, and this:

Mathter: Oh why don't you just relax and have some Pi! [throws Pi weapon at Kim]
Ron: Kim!
Mathter: Ha ha ha ha ha ha. Now it's your turn to feel the full wrath of my math.
Ron: Okay, um, sure could use, I don't know, a hero right about now.
Mathter: Now prepare to be subtracted entirely because-
Ron: Because what? My number's up?
Mathter: Oh. Yes.

Kim: Agghh! Okay, one more lame-o math reference, and I am going to LOSE IT!

Punsy: (As his face changes colors) You think this is a joke?! Well I've got somethin' in store for you! I'm about to open up a new chapter in Rhyme and Punishment! You think you're RED-y for my rhymes? You'll soon be GREEN as envious limes! I see you're not YELLOW, fellow, but I don't want to make you BLUE! So get a clue! And PUR-pull the plug before ya play! Or I'll "ORANGE" a RAINBOW ON YOUR PARADE!

Victor: (trying to get back his wig from Wallace's rabbit machine) I want... toupee, please.
Wallace: Oh, grand. We take cash or check.
Victor: "Toupee", you idiot! My hair is in your machine!
Wallace: Oh no. It's only rabbits in there. The hare, I think you'll find, is a much larger animal.

Crocker: And that, class, is how the founding alpha males signed the Declar-ape-tion of Independence forming the United Apes of America.
AJ: You know, if it weren't for the fact that what he's saying is historically accurate, I would say that's a horrible pun.

    • Lampshaded again when Timmy discovers Chimpsdale.

Timmy: When this is over, I'm wishing for a world without puns.

  • One of these actually saves what could have been another weak jab in a recent Treehouse of Horror episode parodying the "Great Pumpkin" Peanuts special. While making the original religious subtext much more explicit in his defense of his belief in the Great Pumpkin, Milhouse suddenly recites a doctored Apostle's Creed that turns into a nonstop (and hilarious) torrent of vegetable puns.
    • Also from The Simpsons, here's a string from "Ice Cream of Margie (With the Light Blue Hair)", where Homer became an ice cream truck driver: "Our marriage is like soft-serve ice cream. And trust is the hard chocolate shell that keeps it from melting on to our carpet. In cone-clusion, here's the scoop: I love you."
    • In the "Bartman Begins" story from the episode "Revenge is a Dish Best Served Three Times" (2007), The Serpent (Snake Jailbird) makes a string of four snake-related puns while stealing some jewels. Krusty lampshades this ("Puns are lazy writing!") and is shot for his efforts.
  • Animaniacs: The Warner siblings often rely on this, especially when dealing with Dr. Scratchnsniff.
  • The Scooby Doo made-for-TV movies were loaded with monster-related puns. It will drive an adult to insanity.
  • Sheep in The Big City - The. Whole. Damn. Thing.
  • Batman the Brave And The Bold - Also the whole damn thing.
  • Characters in Batman: The Animated Series had a habit of using a few either on purpose or unintentionally (probably the producers not realising). Joker uses several in The Laughing Fish, Penguin uses one or two in Almost Got 'Im and Riddler's episodes are littered with them, to avoid an accidental pun, to the point even characters get annoyed with them. Notably after the pun "Losers ahead" (Loses a head), Batman mutters he's unsure what's worse, the traps or the puns.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: SpongeBob and Patrick get into a fight with some invisibility paint, and fire back-and-forth puns relating to their vanishing body parts. The narrator lampshades this with a title card saying, "Several bad puns later".
  • This parody commercial of the third series of wtf blankets: "Your dog will beg for these...bitchin...blankets!" "Bitch as in..the female dog..." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nlh DAN 8 Dwnw&feature=channel
  • Captain Planet and the Planeteers: Saving the planet with terrible puns.
  • The Incredible Crash Dummies. So many puns. Also has a very high concentration of dismemberment related puns.
  • James and the Giant Peach has an underwater scene with our heroes trying to steal a compass, and for really no reason almost all the characters makes puns here. Some excerpts:

Ms Spider: Hey tailors, looking for some CHIC? *kicks them in the cheeks*
Centipede: Polly want a smacker?
Centipede: How come skeletons never play music in church? 'Cause they got no organs!!

  • Van-Pires is notable for the impressive number of car and vampire puns they cram into every episode. It's really quite something.
  • Yellow Submarine is pretty much one long string of puns, and is all the better for it.
  • He-Man and She-Ra love doing this to their enemies:

The Nostalgia Chick: Guess that sort of thing runs in the family.

  • Cat City, oh God, Cat City. The original Hungarian is basically a 90-minute-long hurricane, continued in the sequel for another 90.
  • Anything that Xavier: Renegade Angel says. Most of the supporting cast frequently fit as well, in addition to visual puns in the background. Repeated viewings are required to catch every single one.
  • The Powerpuff Girls is known for delivering a lot of puns, but they're mostly said by the narrator.
  • Disney's Alice In Wonderland offers a hurricane of creatures with punny names in the flowers scene. We have the rocking-horse fly, the bread-and-butterflies, dog and caterpillars, tiger lillies in love with dande-lions, get-up-in-the-morning glories and lazy daisies.
  • In the Dexter's Laboratory episode, "Dyno-Myte", most everything that Dyno Mutt says is a pun.
  • At the end of every episode of Peabody's Improbable History, Peabody tells a lame pun to Sherman.
  • Danger Mouse delivers on some juicy puns, such as: "Can Danger Mouse find his handlebars before he must dash? ('Must dash?' 'Moustache?' Get it?)"
  • Subverted in Phineas and Ferb ("Ain't No Kiddie Ride"), as Dr. Doofenshmirtz fights Perry the Platypus with a giant remote-controlled hand:

Doofenshmirtz: Hey, nice move, Perry the Platypus, I gotta hand it to you. Here, let me give you a hand. Hey, hey--I'm gonna crush you with my big mechanical hand! Ha! Well-- (Aside Glance) I guess that one was just literal.

  • Every episode of Birdz was up to its beak in avian puns.
  • The Mega Man TV series by Ruby Spears is loaded with puns being volleyed back and forth between the characters during the battle scenes.
  • In the American Dad! episode "Wife Insurance", Roger and Steve, roleplaying as Wheels and the Legman, lay out a several fish-related puns while interrogating Klaus.

Klaus: You proud of that? You PROUD of that sentence you just said?

  • The extended theme for My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic featured tonnes of puns here. They included the following;
    • "When danger makes me scared want to hide, you'll Rainbow Dash to my side"
    • "Once smitten, twice Fluttershy"
    • "You are the Applejack of my eye."
    • "A heart so generous/A Rarity to come by"
    • "You make fun and laughter as easy as Pinkie Pie!"
    • The series in general could be called Horse Puns: The Show.
  • Animalympics, both verbal and visual. Half the fun is catching them.
  • While the average MGM cartoon directed by Tex Avery contained a bunch of this trope, one cartoon, Symphony in Slang, is practically nothing but this trope. Examples:
    • "One day, at the crack of dawn..." (the night sky cracks and then shatters like a window, revealing the sky turning to day)
    • "She [Mary] looked mighty pretty with her hair done up in a bun." (Mary's hair is placed between two hamburger buns)
    • "I had a cocktail and Mary had a Moscow Mule." (the narrator's cocktail is a rooster's tailfeathers in a glass and Mary's "Moscow Mule" is an actual mule sitting on a mug with thick Josef Stalin-type eyebrows and mustache)
    • "I was up against it and felt myself going to pot." (the narrator backs himself up against the word "IT" and his stomach takes on the shape of a pot)
    • "I went down to Joe's Malt Shop where a bunch of the boys were hanging around." (the boys are literally hanging around above the entrance to the malt shop, including one in a noose)
    • "I was feeling mighty blue, and everything looked black." (the sad narrator turns completely blue in color and then the whole screen turns black except for his eyes)
    • "Why, Mary... Mary had a bunch of little ones." (the narrator notices Mary has become the mother of several crying number "1"s)


Real Life[edit | hide]

  • The U.S. legal system provides some unusual examples. When judges get snarky, they often get punny:
    • Chemical Specialties Manufacturers Association v. Clark, 482 F.2d 325 (5th Cir. 1973) (Brown, C.J., concurring)

"As Proctor of this dispute...the decision represents a Gamble since we risk a Cascade of criticism."

    • In the Matter of Charlotte K., 102 Misc.2d 848, 427 N.Y.S.2d 370 (NY Fam. Ct. 1980)

"Is a girdle a burglar's tool or is that stretching the plain meaning of section 140.35 of the Penal Law? This elastic issue...[risks] putting the squeeze on court resources already overextended in this era of trim governmental budgets."

    • Post v. Annand, 798 F.Supp. 189 (S.D. New York 1992)

"In this dog eat dog world, anything is fair game for litigation in the federal courts. While it may not be news when a dog bites a man, it is notable when a dog bites a female minister. As compensation for her injuries, plaintiff seeks to take a bite out of the defendants' pocketbooks...[she] obviously has a bone to pick as her injuries required substantial medical care, and Rocky is clearly in the doghouse. In dogged pursuit of damages for her trauma..."

    • Stambovsky v. Ackley, 169 AD 2d 254 (NY, Appellate Division 1991) (A case famous because the judged declared that "as a matter of law" a house was haunted)

While I agree with Supreme Court that the real estate broker, as agent for the seller, is under no duty to disclose to a potential buyer the phantasmal reputation of the premises and that, in his pursuit of a legal remedy for fraudulent misrepresentation against the seller, plaintiff hasn't a ghost of a chance, I am nevertheless moved by the spirit of equity to allow the buyer to seek rescission of the contract of sale and recovery of his down payment...From the perspective of a person in the position of plaintiff herein, a very practical problem arises with respect to the discovery of a paranormal phenomenon: "Who you gonna call?" as a title song to the movie "Ghostbusters" asks. Applying the strict rule of caveat emptor to a contract involving a house possessed by poltergeists conjures up visions of a psychic or medium routinely accompanying the structural engineer and Terminix man on an inspection of every home subject to a contract of sale. It portends that the prudent attorney will establish an escrow account lest the subject of the transaction come back to haunt him and his client — or pray that his malpractice insurance coverage extends to supernatural disasters. In the interest of avoiding such untenable consequences, the notion that a haunting is a condition which can and should be ascertained upon reasonable inspection of the premises is a hobgoblin which should be exorcised from the body of legal precedent and laid quietly to rest.

    • To be fair, this is not necessarily a judge handing someone a tall steaming mug of snark. Law is an odd profession; you have to be fairly intelligent to get into it, and quite intelligent to be good at it, but it's also filled with stupid plodding mundane tedium. Punning and other clever language in briefs and arguments is a game that keeps intelligent people in a state of something vaguely resembling sanity.
  • PUNdit Keith Olbermann's coverage of the so-called "teabagging" protests in the United States on April 15 (the day taxes are due) will either leave you in stitches, or itching for a shoe to throw. If you don't get it, look up "teabagging" on Urban Dictionary.
    • Also Rachel Maddow and guest Ana Marie Cox in the two/three days leading up to the protests.
      • They'll need a Dick Armey for that kind of protest.
    • Still not as funny as the faux pas about the Obamas "fisting" in front of the White House.
  • The Hurricane of Puns is the basis for several classic jokes on the World Famous Jungle Cruise at Disneyland. The most famous is in reference to the headhunter near the end of the ride ("Trader Sam's the head salesman around these parts, but business has been shrinking lately, so to cut down on his overhead, he's offering a killer deal: two of his heads for just one of yours. Any way you slice it, you're sure to come out ahead."), but there are several more floating around, including the complete menu to the Cannibal Cafe (elbow macaroni, rump roast, ladyfingers, and so on), a joke which name-checks every single amusement park in Southern California and lasts for about two minutes, and a joke which name-checks dozens of clothing retailers and lasts for twice as long. That's four minutes of puns.
    • Interested tropers are directed to Spider Robinson's "The Blacksmith's Tale", in which one character describes going through the Disneyland with a Star Wars fan. After taking the aforementioned Jungle Cruise and nearing the end, said fan comments, "Now you're getting to see the dock side of the farce." This, of course, is merely part of the setup for the worst pun of the entire story.
  • Stand-up comedian Tim Vine is this trope. As are Stewart Francis and the above mentioned Milton Jones.
  • It is also a staple of Firesign Theatre material.
  • Swami Beyondananda, in both stand-up and books, has a way with it as well: "If you're a sucker for a seer, and what the seer sees sucks, you can redress your grievance in a seersucker suit."
  • German philosopher Martin Heidegger wrote like this in his later days. The Das Land der Dichter und Denker had become Land der Richter und Henker during the Nazi regime. (Richter = lawyer, Henker = hangman)
  • Several pick up lines, including this one: "I'm like DNA helicase - I unzip your genes." [4]
  • This thread on the Gallifrey Base forums about the Doctor Who episode featuring a Space Whale seems to have been created just for the halibut.
  • This news story about a statue of Michael Jackson erected Craven Cottage Football Stadium in Fulham, England.
  • The AUK is a nationally-administered that can be completed by groups of students who don't mind all of the horrid auk-related puns. "You're AUKcellent", indeed...
  • Yeesh. Some people need to get a life. But you know what they say: never bring a life to a pun fight.
  • Gerard Depardieu allegedly urinated on a plane. In response, Anderson Cooper let loose this stream of puns.
    • Ha ha. "Stream".
  • Neil Cavuto of Fox news hears about President Obama at Disney World and immediately has this say. I counted 12 in 2 minutes. One every 10 seconds is pretty good, even if they were groan inducing.
  • The success of LA Knicks player Jeremy Lin has resulted in several puns based off his name, most notably "Linsanity." For example, see here.
  • Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel of WRAL-TV does this on an almost nightly occurrence. As long as the news story right before him isn't drop-dead serious, he'll make a pun out of it. Without any knowledge of what the story was before he went on to the set.
  1. For any of you non-Holmes fans out there...there's a Holmes adventure of the engineer's thumb.
  2. The "Folksy Twang" is actually the vestiges of the narrator's Australian accent coming through. (European broadcasts have a different narrator.)
  3. Piers Morgan was the editor of The Daily Mirror, widely regarded as unpleasant, and has now gone to America to play The Mean Brit.
  4. jeans