That Came Out Wrong

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Tobias: I'm afraid I prematurely shot my wad on what was supposed to be a dry run, if you will, so I'm afraid I have something of a mess on my hands.

Michael: There's just so many poorly chosen words in that sentence....

A character says something innocuous, but can easily be misconstrued as something really dirty. Different from Innocent Innuendo in that the audience isn't misled—it's just the character him or herself not filtering her thoughts properly. Other, more dirty-minded characters may make fun of the speaker or chime in with "That's what she said!" More commonly, the speaker catches herself and, after a Beat, utters the title phrase.

A related phenomenon is this sequence:

  1. The inadvertent Double Entendre is said.
  2. The speaker moves on to something else, leaving everyone nervous.
  3. The person closest to the speaker says "Wait for it."
  4. Cue a flustered explanation from the speaker.

"Can I rephrase that?" is a common stock phrase associated with this trope.

Compare Accidental Innuendo. May degenerate into Digging Yourself Deeper or Freudian Slippery Slope. Not related to (or should be confused with) Came Back Wrong.

Examples of That Came Out Wrong include:


Advertising[edit | hide | hide all]

  • Burger King did one that was not so much dirty as Squicky: "We don't just serve burgers, we serve people."
  • McDonald's had a brief (and swiftly recalled) online advertising campaign in which they'd slightly misunderstood youth slang. "Double cheeseburger? I'd hit it".[1]
  • KFC once had a Battlestar Galactica Reimagined tie-in promotion which advertised a sweepstakes to win a "Frak Pak". After realizing what the frak that actually meant, they removed all instances of "frak" and changed the name of the promotion to "Can't-Say-That-Word-on-Television Sweepstakes". This was probably even worse, since the old name only suggests a prize pack with condoms and KY Jelly, while the revised name suggests a "Happy Ending" Massage for the winners.
  • The "True love that comes from a little green leaf" line in this Truvia commercial.
  • aerie: "The Real You Is Sexy". For one,

mcc: I see this ad campaign all over and every time I assume they're accusing me of being an evil doppelganger


Anime & Manga[edit | hide]

Kazuya: I'm a little scared.
Akane: Don't worry, I know lots of stuff.
Kazuya: Eh?
Akane: (sheepishly while waving her hands) No, I didn't mean it like that. I learned lots in school.
Kazuya: R-right.

  • This conversation from the second season of the Sailor Moon anime:

King Endymion: Sailor Moon, Tuxedo Kamen, this girl is the daughter of you two.
(Sailor Moon and Tuxedo Kamen look at each other and go beet red)
Sailor Mars: (enraged) In which year, month, day, minute, and second did this happen?! (realizes what she just said and blushes)

Fate: That's right. On my days off, Nanoha and I do things like that together.
(Beat Panel)
Fate: Of course, I mean like stretches and training.
Teana: Please don't clarify it like that. It's suspicious.

  • Poor Poor Lips has Nako completely missing the subtext behind the head maid's comment on her sleeping with Ren and proceeding to give Ren a heart attack when she cheerfully announces to Ren that she'll "Attend to you all night if you want!!"
  • School Rumble when Harima accidentally told Tenma that he will take care of her sister Yakumo forever.


Comic Books[edit | hide]

Wolverine: No offense, but you trying to act... sexy... seems so wrong.
Jubilee: Not thirteen anymore, Wolvie.
Wolverine: I sort of wish you were. (pause) That... sounded bad.
Jubilee: Awful.

Crispus Allen: What's going on between you and Corrigan?
Renee Montoya: I beg your pardon?
Crispus: Not like that.
Renee: Then like what?


Comic Strips[edit | hide]

  • Zits
    • The history teacher once makes one: "And the Vikings in their pillaging made off with lots of booty." Needless to say, the class was over after she said it.
    • Likewise, one earlier Sunday strip is made of this trope, in which a museum guide calmly gives the class a tour on "the many wonderful examples of tools", causing Jeremy and Hector to mutter "Tools" at each other and dissolve into barely contained giggles. The guide goes on to explaining to the class on how "Some tools are very large... some are nearly microscopic", then asks them "Can you think of a tool you have in your pocket right now? What tool do you use every day?" It's a wonder they kept straight faces for as long as they did.
  • Roger in FoxTrot:

"I don't want some drop-dead gorgeous, hot-bodied wife!... (beat) ...I'm not helping myself, am I?"

  • In a strip of Dilbert, Ratbert gets attacked by a cat which bites onto his head and won't let go. Dogbert and Bob try to help, and Dogbert explains the plan: "I'll yank the cat off Ratbert's head, and you stamp on it." Sure enough, Dogbert yanks the cat off, and Bob stamps on Ratbert's head. Dogbert admits that he could have phrased it better.


Fan Works[edit | hide]

"If I had a nickel for every time I said I'd take her down, and she tried to flay me with that whip while I tried to get the cuffs on her..."
Bruce stopped as his imagination caught up with the words he was speaking, and he envisioned his conservative, middle-aged father's reaction to this evocative imagery.
"It's not as kinky as it sounds," Bruce lied.

"I can stop you!" Don Paolo snapped. "I'm greater than Layton! I build flying machines and soup up cars to turn them into gliders! Not to mention I'm extremely handy with latex!" He paused. "That came out wrong."

  • In Christian Humber Reloaded, Vash, after killing Soku, apologizes to the kids for doing it in front of them, because he doesn't want his enemies to find out that he has "a thing for children". This was meant to show that he is a Friend to All Children, but the kids initially think he's a pedophile.
  • In the "Zero Hour" arc of I'm a Marvel... And I'm a DC, when the heroes meet Lars, Spider-Man says "So, you finally went and changed your douche. Good Lord, that came out horribly."
  • In Kyon: Big Damn Hero, when Tsuruya and Kyon are disguising themselves as students of another school:

Tsuruya: Now, Kyon-kun, can you get on your knees?
Kyon: (shrugs) Somehow, I really expected to hear that from Haruhi, first.
(beat)
Tsuruya: (chuckles) I have to do your hair.

  • Dragon Ball Abridged has a few of these, several centered around characters only knowing one definition of the word "Balls". Goku is also a fountain of material for this, but never quite realizes it.
    • There's also the accidental calls to George Takei...

Goku: Then he went and brought this really horny guy!
George: Oh my.
Goku: Who's that, King Kai?
King Kai: It's George Takei. Somehow we made this into a three-way.
George: Ohhhh my!
King Kai: Call! Three-way call!

Tien: No! Chiaotzu, my partner!
Yamcha: ... gay.
Tien:' Hey, at least I don't spend all of my free time living alone with a cat!
Yamcha: Hey, at least I get some puss-- wow, that did NOT come out right.

"Oh, we can fix that," said Zoner. He took back the red WDF Credit Union card, slid it into a slot on a small PDA-type device, made a few adjustments with a stylus, and handed the card back after it beeped, saying, "There. Now you're well-endowed."
There was a brief, awkward pause. Juri raised an eyebrow.
"You have a lot of money," said Zoner, his expression wooden.

Films -- Animation[edit | hide]

  • In The Thief and the Cobbler, a few things come out wrong for Evil Chancellor Zigzag thanks to the fact that his scheme revolves around the three golden balls that allegedly protect the city. Namely "Now that I have the balls, I'll go see the King!" and "I'm taking my balls and leaving!"


Films -- Live-Action[edit | hide]

  • Occurs repeatedly in Down Periscope when the Captain Dodge is introducing their female dive officer to the ship's otherwise all-male crew.

Dodge: I know this is an unusual situation. Can't be easy for Lt. Lake here to be thrown into a jungle such as this, and I know it will make things hard on all of us ... (laughter) ... Let me re-phrase that. It's going to make things difficult on all of us as well. But if we just work together as a team, I'm sure we can handle ourselves ... (more laughter) ... comport ourselves as professionals.

Debi: You're a psychopath.
Martin: No, no. Psychopaths kill for no reason. I kill for money. It's a job. That didn't come out right.

Bill: Nice. Nothing like a good sack. Always cheers me up.
Mike: (snickering) I bet it does.
Bill: Yeah, a sweaty, blood-soaked sack will always improve my mood!
Mike: Wow.
Kevin: Bill, might want to reconsider your choice of words about the battle...
Bill: ...Battle?

Sam Witwicky: I was wondering if... if I could ride you home... I, I mean if I could give you a ride home.

Agent Coulson: I watched you while you were sleeping. (Awkward silence). I-I mean... I was present when you were unconscious from the ice.


Literature[edit | hide]

  • In The Dresden Files book Turn Coat, Harry offers to help the leader of the White Council, the Merlin, prove the innocence of Morgan, as the politics involved in the situation prevent the Merlin from finding anything helpful without making it look like he's trying to save his own ass. When he asks why Harry intends to help him, Harry responds, "Because your balls are in a vise and I'm the only one who can pull them out." Cue arched eyebrow from the Merlin.

Harry: Okay. That came out a little more homoerotic than I intended.
Merlin: Indeed.


Live-Action TV[edit | hide]

  • Ugly Betty: In "In or Out," Betty says that the severely depressed Daniel needs to "get back on the horse" and start dating again. Later, she stands up, says "I'm gonna find him another horse to ride," marches resolutely off camera, then returns to add "that didn't sound so dirty in my head."
  • Greek:

"I can't go to that interview [that my ex-boyfriend Evan set up for me]. Evan tainted it."
"Who cares about Evan's taint?"

  • Friends
    • Ross once had a crush on the pizza delivery girl. When she comes to deliver pizzas she complains that her new haircut makes her look like a young boy. Ross says (impulsively thinking that it'll be a compliment) that he "happens to like" young boys. Oops.
    • Ross was the Mayor of doing this on that show. In a late season, he's trying to convince Rachel's ex-boss to rehire her, and he learns that the man's son is into dinosaurs.

Ross: I'll let your son come to the museum, late at night after everyone is gone, and he can touch anything he wants!... OK, I just heard that the way you must have heard it. I mean you'll be there too, and the touching just refers to bones -- Fossils!

    • Rachel had her moments too, like this line to Ross while they were sleeping together;

Rachel: Oh please. That Paolo thing was barely a relationship. All it really was was just, ya know, meaningless animal sex. (seeing Ross' hurt look) Okay, you know, that sounded so much better in my head.

Dawn: It's like a meat party in my mouth. (pause) Okay, I'm just a kid and even I know that sounded wrong.

    • Willow, describing college:

Willow: But here, the energy, the collective intelligence, it's like this force, this penetrating force, and I can just feel my mind opening up -- you know? -- and letting this place thrust into and spurt knowledge into... That sentence ended up in a different place than it started out in.

    • Willow again:

Willow: He likes you. He wanted to ask you out last year, but you weren't ready then. But I think you're ready now, or at least in the state of pre-readiness to make conversation, or-or to do that thing with your mouth that boys like.... Oh! I didn't mean the bad thing with your mouth, I meant that little half-smile thing that you... You're supposed to stop me when I do that.

Spike: So you're just here to pump me for information?
Buffy: What else would I want to pump you for? (beat) I really just said that, didn't I?

    • Anya, comforting Willow after Tara has been driven insane:

Anya: You can sleep with me! That came out a lot more lesbian than it sounded in my head.

    • Anya is disappointed that Souled Spike didn't fight a demon to the death when Buffy and Robin Wood walk into the conversation.

Spike: No need to thank me. I'm just the one who beat him off.
Buffy & Robin: ...
Spike: Repelled him would perhaps be the better phrase. Demon...

    • Buffy explaining why she's not ready for a real relationship (namely with Angel):

Buffy: I'm cookie dough, I'm not done baking yet, I'm not done becoming whoever the hell it is I'm going to be... maybe one day I turn around and realize I'm cookies, and then if I want someone to eat me... (beat) Er, enjoy "delicious cookie" me...

    • Buffy even managed to do this without saying anything: In the episode where demons had stolen everybody's voices, she mimed a staking by jerking her hollowed right hand up and down, before she realized what that gesture normally refers to.
    • When Buffy & Riley fought a vampire/demon tag team, she said to Riley "You get fangs, I'll get horny! I mean..."
    • Non-sexual example in "Inca Mummy Girl", while discussing costumes for a fancy-dress-dance.

Xander: Okay, no shirts with ruffles, no hats with feathers, and definitely no lederhosen. They make my calves look fat.
Willow: Why are you suddenly so worried about looking like an idiot? That came out wrong.

Buffy: When I kissed you? You know I was thinking about Giles, right?
Spike: (Double Take) You know, I always wondered about you two.

  • Angel
    • Angel trying to get Lindsey to join his team:

Angel: I want you, Lindsey. (beat) I'm thinking about rephrasing that.
Lindsey: Yeah, I'd be a lot more comfortable if you did.

    • From the Season 2 premiere:

Cordelia: You can't see everything. You're just a vampire, like everyone else. That didn't come out right.

    • Fred and Gunn, tracking Holtz by the radiation given off after crossing dimensions:

Fred: We've been tracking Conner's emissions this whole time!
Gunn: I could go without ever hearing that phrase again.

Badger: Of course, you couldn't buy an invite with a diamond the size of a testicle, but I've got my hands on a couple.
(Mal and Jayne glance at each other and start snickering)
Badger: Of invites!

Roxie: Soon, every guy in this college will be in my pants... that came out wrong.

  • Frasier LOVES the "wait for it" variation. Usually Martin does the "Wait for it."
  • Scrubs:

Elliot: Well, Dr. Cox, you may have seen it all and done it all, but you haven't done me!
(Elliot walks off, as all the other doctors and nurses gasp.)
Cox: Give her a second there, gang.

    • Elliot gets a LOT of these. Most notably in the Season One episode "My Blind Date", where she's trying to get Dr. Cox to treat her as his second-in-command as he does J.D., and comes out with such gems as "I want you to use me and I don't care how degrading it is." Each That Came Out Wrong turns into an even worse Double Entendre than the one it was trying to explain, ending with the fourth iteration: "I just want to make you happy." At that point, she just gives up.
    • Elliot's patient Sean: "Wow, you're my doctor. I have something for you in my pants. No! Nonono! I'm not wearing any pants right now. My pants are over there and there's a note from my GP in the pocket. If you need me, I'll be under here. *hides under sheet*"
    • Though not necessarily "innocuous", J.D.'s conversation with the Janitor after seeing him naked took a spin into the Entendre Zone:

J.D.: Janitor, I'm gonna be straight with you. I saw your penis, and I noticed a possible melanoma that you should really have checked out.
Janitor: When did you see my penis?
J.D.: Last night, when you were showering.
Janitor: Where were you?
J.D.: Oh, I was outside, in the bushes.
Janitor: Uh...
J.D.: Look, it was just a coincidence, man -- I mean, if you had looked out the window, you'd have seen my penis, you know!
Janitor: What! Why?
J.D.: Because I had it out while I was looking at yours!

That one's more the Ho Yay (because it's Scrubs) version of Accidental Pervert. (Well, if it weren't J.D. having to pee.)
  • Arrested Development: Almost all of Tobias Fumke's lines fall under this trope. ALMOST ALL. Not only does Tobias phrase things horribly, he constantly finds himself in ambiguously-homosexual scenarios, seemingly oblivious of his consistent, perhaps subconscious involvement in them.
    • When Michael plays matchmaker, Tobias says:

Tobias: Michael, you really are quite the cupid. You can zink your arrow into my buttocks any time.

    • After painting himself blue:

Tobias: I'm afraid I just blue myself.

    • Tobias' errors are not always spoken, but sometimes written.

Tobias: I was a professional twice over -- an analyst and a therapist. The world's first analrapist.
Lindsay: Yes, and you were almost arrested for those business cards.

    • Tobias wants to be cast as a leading male role in a major film. So naturally, he says:

Tobias: Ooh, I can taste those meaty, leading man parts in my mouth!

    • Tobias agrees to be a wing man by helping pick up chicks. And he'll do it! Even if he ends up with a fat girl. So he says:

Tobias: Even if it means me taking a chubby, I will suck it up.

    • Some of his lines are so bad, they don't even work as a double entendre. Perhaps most baffling:

Tobias: I wouldn't mind kissing that man between the cheeks, so to speak.

    • When pretending to be a British nanny serving breakfast:

Tobias: (as Mrs. Featherbottom) Who'd like a banger in the mouth? Oh, I forgot, here in the States you call it a sausage in the mouth!
Michael: We just call it a sausage.

    • An excerpt from Tobias' self-help book, The Man Inside Me:

There's a man, deep inside me, and only when he's finally out can I walk free of pain.

    • At Michael's suggestion, Tobias records his comments for a day with a tape recorder and replays them, finally realizing there is something wrong with his phrasing. His acknowledgement?

Tobias: Oh, Tobias. You blowhard!

  • In an episode of Seinfeld, Jerry's asking his girlfriend (a deaf lip-reader) what time she wants to arrive at a party:

Jerry: What about six? Six is good. You got a problem with six? (Jerry's girlfriend looks horrified and runs out)

Maj. Carter: A strong enough EM pulse can knock out most electronic-based technologies. It would be harmless to us, but it should render Urgo impotent.
Urgo: Could you, uh... rephrase that?

    • Better one in "New Order, Part 2" The team is discussing whether or not Jack should become commander of the SGC.

Carter: If you don't take the job, we could end up with someone much worse.
(the rest of SG-1 stares at her)
Carter: Okay, that didn't come out right.

    • Carter is just good at these. There's one in season 6's "Forsaken":

Corso: Amazing. For a supposedly less advanced human you're pretty comfortable with our technology.
Carter: Well, you're in luck. I have a little more experience with this sort of thing than most people on my planet. Besides, all we're really doing is plugging your ship into my battery.
Corso: Whatever you say.
Carter: ... That didn't sound very good, did it?

  • Stargate Atlantis
    • Rodney is attracted to a female scientist on the world Taranis and comes up with the following. He doesn't say the trope-namer, but realizes it and then digs himself deeper.

Norina: Perhaps one day I could study under you.
McKay: Uh, yes, well, I really... um, really look forward to that. But first, we need to, uh, get off. Uh, first we need to get off the planet ... first we need to get off the planet, and then you can be under me.

  • The US version of The Office features this from time to time.
    • It is best seen in the "Women's Appreciation" episode after Phyllis gets flashed in the parking lot:

Pam: I don't often miss Roy, but I can tell you one thing: I wish someone had flashed me when I was with Roy. Because that would've been the ass-kicking of the year. Especially if it'd been Jim. He would not have wanted to me to have seen Jim's... (pause) I'm-- I am saying a lot of things.

    • When Toby (Michael's archrival) shows up late to find Michael mocking the incident by sticking his finger through his fly.

Toby: I don't think this is an appropriate response.
Michael: Speaking of that, where were you this morning, anyway?
Toby: (getting annoyed and walking off) I was taking my daughter to school.
Michael: Sure... Let's see your penis! (Beat) You know, even as I was saying it...

    • From the "Bachelor Party" episode

Michael: Sort of a guys' night out. A 'G.N.O.', if you will. A 'G.N.O.'... Actually, it's more of a guys' afternoon in. A 'G.A.I.'... A gay. Not... no... it's a... not a gai, it's a... It's a bridal shower for guys. A guy shower. A hour-long shower with guys.

  • The Hollywood Squares had an infamous cut section when John Davidson (who tried to keep up a clean-cut pretty boy image) got this question: "What do Japanese Women Shave after they marry?" The other panelists, who are known for raunchier jokes, were howling as the poor man is obviously trying to come up with an answer:

John: Well, on the whole of the matter... (cue a priceless expression when he realized what he just said)

  • Occasionally on Top Gear.
    • Adding to the humor is that the worst offender is the sober, serious-minded James May, who often realizes his mistake a few seconds later, tries nobly to continue with a straight face, and then loses it shortly thereafter.

May: (on women who make their husbands ride in the backseat) She's effectively saying, "You've given me the baby, now get in the back."

    • Happened to Richard Hammond when was riding a Vincent Black Shadow motorcycle:

Hammond: I'm now straddling my boyhood hero! (pause) No. Wait. That's not right. Between my legs... no, no...

    • One segment involving the gang trying to build a kit car has an entire scene full of this, though they don't realize it, while they're putting the brakes together. Gems include "I am now pumping", "I need more", and "Oh yeah, that's good, that's nice and hard." There is a brief shot of Hammond (who is pumping the brake pedal) mugging for the camera, however, suggesting he might have had an inkling...
  • Happens a few times in How I Met Your Mother, most notably when Barney's trying to train someone to be his wingman.
    • In "Okay Awesome", after Robin's overblown sense of worldliness lands her in trouble:

Robin: I get recognized once and I think I'm Julia Roberts! I'm not a VIP. I'm not even an IP. I'm just a lonely little P sitting in the gutter.
Lily: Oh honey, I'd take a P in the gutter over Julia Roberts any day.
(both of them realize what was just said, with priceless expressions)

  • A Will and Grace episode had friends of the title characters begging off from their usual game night due to Grace's overcompetitiveness.

Grace: Well, if no one wants to play with me, then I'm just going to go to my room and play with myself. (pause) By myself. I meant, by myself.

  • Rules of Engagement
    • In the episode "Lyin' King", Audrey tells Jeff to stop ribbing their gay friends, which elicits this response:

Jeff: What's the point of having gay friends if I can't ride them every now and again. (pause) Just forget I said that.

    • Another example (from "The Birthday Deal"):

Adam: And each year, when I'm doing it, I'll be thinking of you. (pause) I did not just say that.
Jeff: I didn't hear it.

Sheriff Cobb: (hangs up the phone) That was Ned Carver. He claims aliens abducted some of his cattle again, so...
Lupo: Tell him to call me when they move on to anal probes.
(Cobb and Zoe stare)
Lupo: Wait, um... that didn't come out right.

    • There was also a moment in an episode where Zane and Fargo are arguing about backdoor access to GD from the smart house's system. Jo gets sick of it:

Lupo: Boys, there's plenty of backdoor access for everyone! (pause) That didn't come out right.

    • In another episode, Carter is talking to Zoe's best friend Pillar about the surprise party they're planning. Allison teases him for it.

Allison: Oh, me? I thought you were into young brunettes?
Carter: No, no, I'm into old brun... (trails off uncertainly)
Allison: Didn't come out right, did it?

Mulder: It's not a bad piece of ash, huh?
(Scully gives him a look)
Mulder: The bat... I'm talking about the bat.

    • And in "Monday", after Mulder's waterbed sprung a leak.

Mulder: I woke up, I opened my eyes, I was soaking wet...
(on another look from Scully)
Mulder: It's a long story.

    • And in "Empedocles", though that was Mulder taking something dirty from nothing. Mulder arrives at Scully's apartment, and is a little miffed that she was expecting someone else.

Scully: I was just about to hop in the shower, but I was waiting for the pizza man.
Mulder: You got something going on with the pizza man I should know about?
Scully: The pizza man?
Mulder: Well, correct me if I'm wrong, but you did just say you were waiting for the pizza man to hop in the shower.

  • NCIS
    • Tony is still not 100% after his brush with plague in the previous episode.

Kate: Damnit, Tony. I should just take you home and get you into bed. (Ducky and Tony look at her) Okay, that didn't come out like it was supposed to. (cue big grin from Tony, until Kate elbows him in the chest)

    • Also the scene where Gibbs catches McGee underneath Abby's table (while she's sitting in it) rewiring her hotbox.[2] McGee's attempts to explain what he's doing to a tech-ignorant Gibbs on full Death Glare sounds like a Freudian Slippery Slope version of this trope.
    • And Ducky, talking about finding footprints on carpets:

Ducky: It looks like Sisal. It's a naturally stiff fiber woven from the leaf of the cactus plant. It doesn't mat, trap dust, or build static. It's ideal for carpeting, but personally, I prefer a good shag. (awkward silence) From a criminal investigative standpoint...

  • QI saw Doon Mackichan manage a visual version of this, attempting to mime a Deep-Fried Curly Wurly.
  • In the first episode of Sleuth 101 one of the female suspects, while attempting to explain that she spent her nights alone cleaning, says:

"It's just me and the Dustbuster. (pause) That came out wrong."

Castle: I'm rubbing off on you. (beat) That sounded dirtier than I intended.

    • Later, one that wasn't dirty, merely accidentally insulting:

Alexis: I'm a rat killer!
Castle: You don't know that! You may just be a loser! (beat) A... rat-loser... This did not come out right.

    • "Overkill" has a nice one, undermining Castle's manliness. After he scored free samples of an expensive shaving cream for Ryan and Esposito, Beckett compares them to Charlotte and Miranda.

Castle: Wait a minute, that would make me Carrie.
Beckett: You're so metrosexual for even knowing that!
Castle: I only watched that show out of the corner of my eye when my mother had it on!
(realises)
Castle: That so did not come out right.

    • While investigating the murder of a stripper:

Castle: Are we going to pump Von Manschaft until he pops?
(off everybody's vaguely incredulous expressions)

  • Psych is quite fond of this.
    • Particularly regarding Gus; in season 3, episode 6, "There Might Be Blood", Gus says, "I'm nobody's pawn, Shawn. I'm a queen!"
    • Episode 13 of the same season, "Any Given Friday Night At 10PM, 9PM Central" (Yes, that is actually what the episode is called), has this exchange:

Gus: (walking with Shawn) Look, let me be very clear. These hands are not touching anyone. I only use these hands to touch myself.
(They both stop walking almost immediately)
Gus: Uh, let me rephrase that.
Shawn: Please stop speaking.

    • Another one:

Lassiter: You can't beat me on the field so now you want to beat me off?
Shawn: You may want to rephrase that, sir.

    • Lassiter, talking about the SBPD not having gala events: "We don't have balls."
  • A clean one in Bones:

Sweets: I've been mocked many, many times before. (beat) That... came out wrong.

  • Doctor Who, "The Vampires of Venice": Having burst abruptly into Rory's stag party, the Doctor informs Rory—in front of all his friends—that his fiance Amy tried to kiss him. Attempting to reassure the shocked Rory, the Doctor takes pains to stress that he's a lucky man, because she's a great kisser. One awkward, hostile silence later:

The Doctor: ... Funny how you can say something in your head and it sounds fine...

  • In Dads Army, Captain Mainwaring manages to get a block of rationed cheese as a surprise for his wife. However, when he telephones her with the good news, things don't quite go as he planned.

Captain Mainwaring: Yes, Elizabeth. I think I may have a little surprise for you tonight...

Topher-doll: Who's your backdoor-man?
Real Topher: Lets just pretend I didn't say that.
Topher-doll: Yeah.

Jeff: Hey, Troy sneezes like a girl!
Troy: And how about I pound you like a boy? That didn't come out right.

    • The best part is that he doesn't even bother with the beat, realizing halfway through the sentence that he was in trouble.
    • The outtake from "Beginner Pottery".

Annie: Gotta get it hard again.

  • An exchange between Emma and Mickey in Hustle:

Emma: How would you like it if I drooled over you?
(significant look from Mickey)
Emma: Forget I asked that.

  • In the Quantum Leap episode "Dr. Ruth", the prudish Sam is incredibly uncomfortable when he leaps into the eponymous sex therapist and has to read some promos for her radio show:

Sam: Tomorrow on "Frank Talk About Sex", we're going to discuss some common male sexual dysfunctions, like prema-t-ture... Premature... Well, we're gonna discuss a lotta things that I'm sure will be very stimulating. (beat) Uh, uplifting. (beat) Interesting!!

  • It happened in That '70s Show when Eric and Donna where going to have a romantic dinner together.

Kitty: Oh, this is so cute! It'll be just like the little Play-Doh dinner you had when you were kids, except it won't end with Donna sitting on Eric's head!
(everyone notices the innuendo and stare at Kitty; Red and Kitty leave)
Red: Kitty, that was just awful.

Debra: Really? You're gonna cook for me? Well, don't ever expect me to return the favor. Unless you're a fan of toast.
Lundy: I would love to eat your toast. (they both laugh) Gosh, that sounded wrong.

    • Later, Dexter being willing to run a test off the record:

Dexter: Absolutely. If you need something under the table... I'm your guy. (Beat) That didn't come out right.

    • Also, after Angel started a bar-brawl defending Marias honor. The line isn't too bad in and of itself, but given that Vince Masuka is the resident pervert, Le Guerta immediately takes it the wrong way.

Masuka: (to Le Guerta) With all due respect, this man is a knight in shining armor. You should be polishing his lance.
Maria: Excuse me?!
Masuka: (beat) I meant that... metaphorically, not... like it sounded.

Ryan: (listening to the ground) Buffalo come. (realization dawns, audience is already laughing)
Colin: You really didn't have to put your ear in it.

Daniel: (after spilling a drink on a girl's shirt) You should maybe take that off. Well, not... off... now. Uh, I didn't mean-I didn't mean it like that... um, ah, sor-forget it.

  • The Drew Carey Show, when Drew anticipates his revenge on some guys who put cigarettes in his beer:

Drew: We'll shove our butts in their mugs, see how they like the taste of that!
Lewis: Uh... Drew...
Drew: I know, I regretted it the minute I said it.

  • Coupling
    • When Susan finds out that all of her friends want to see her sex-tape with Patrick.

Susan: What is it with you lot? Why do you all have this desperate desire to see me naked?
Steve: Oh Susan, no one wants to see you naked. (Beat) Okay, that came out wrong.

    • Steve does this at least as often as Jeff:

Susan: So nice to know that the first time we were intimate you were busy noticing all the little differences from perfect, freckle-free Jane.
Steve: No! No! No, I hardly noticed any difference at all!

Cam: Why do you have to throw a wet blanket on my dreams?
Mitchell: I do not.
Cam: You do it all the time. And you know what I end up with? Wet dreams. I heard it as soon as I said it, just leave it alone.

  • In the Becker episode where he is Mistaken for Racist, he confronts the journalist who libeled him. "I have strong opinions, but none of them are racially motivated! Everything I say is motivated by stupidity!" Beat "You know what I meant!"
  • The Walking Dead
    • Lori says the trope name word-for-word after saying that she'd rather eat Miss Piggy than frog legs.
    • Rick provides a dramatic version of one of these when he tells Shane that he wouldn't understand his plan to go to CDC because Lori and Carl aren't his family, when it was Shane that took care of them while he was gone.
  • Literal example in "The Roommate Transmogrification" in The Big Bang Theory:

Penny: What happened to Leonard?
Sheldon: The same thing that happened to Homo Erectus. He was replaced by a superior species.
Raj: I'm the new Homo in town. (beat) That came out wrong.

  • An unintentional Crowning Moment of Funny occurred on The Gruen Transfer during a discussion of an ad for women's razors. A female panellist commented that the majority of young males had never seen female pubic hair. Russel then remarked "Except for their mother's". As the rest of the panel collapsed in a mix of shock, disbelief and hilarity, Russel hurriedly tried to explain that he had meant when they were born, but the explanation was lost under the hysterical laughter.
  • On Law and Order Special Victims Unit, one of the new ADA's was introduced to Stabler and Benson and was... a little too enthusiastic about her new posting.

Hardwicke: (to Stabler) I'm a big fan of your unit.
Stabler: (bemused stare) Uh...
Hardwicke: That's not what I meant.

  • On The Ultimate Fighter reality show, UFC President Dana White considers kicking an unruly fighter off the show. But as he stands before all of the fighters, he reconsiders and decides the unruly fighter, Junie, should fight and lose, leaving the show that way. He says, "This isn't fucking Survivor. You don't fucking vote him off. Let's fucking BEAT HIM OFF. [pause] That didn't sound good, did it?"
  • On The Tonight Show, Michelle Williams talked about her vacation in Mexico being an adventure resulting in this exchange.

Jay: So what was the adventure?
Michelle: I'm still a little sore.
(Beat)
Jay: (looking horrified) Oh that's... we'll move on to another.
Michelle: Oh no, I mean horseback riding.

Broodwing: Did you think you could get away from me that easily?
Ethan: We've run away from a lot worse than you, buddy! Ooh, that didn't come out right at all.

Ann Perkins: Pathetic, maybe. But it feels pretty good to have a bunch of little boys be super into me. That... came out wrong.

  • A staple joke of The Nanny is for C.C. to say something (usually 100% clean) and Niles will make sure it's presented in the naughtiest possible light or transforming it into an insult about C.C.

C.C.: They're fumigating my apartment.
Niles: They've done that before. You always come back.
C.C.: (Death Glare at Niles) So I need to find a kennel.
Niles: Oh, treat yourself to a hotel.

  • Rizzoli and Isles: Angela cannot text, apparently, because she sent Jane a message that said "Honey, I need a boner." She really wanted a loner.

Pro Wrestling[edit | hide]

John Cena: So now it's, you beat me, you beat me? Guess what, I beat YOU (points to Shawn) I beat YOU (points to Triple H) We all beat each other, we beat each other all the time!
(camera shifts to the Bella Twins nearby, who walk away while smirking)
John Cena: That... that didn't come out right!
Shawn Michaels: Way to go!


Video Games[edit | hide]

Ezio: May I come up?
Girl: Fine. But only for a minute.
Ezio: A minute is all that I'll need...
Girl: Indeed...
Ezio: Wait... that came out wrong.

    • He stayed the whole night.
  • Persona 3 has an early scene between the main character, Yukari and Junpei, the day after the hero stumbled upon Yukari armed with her evoker during the Dark Hour and she asked him not to tell anyone about it. Junpei's heard that the hero and Yukari walked to school together that morning and playfully asks if there's anything going on between them. Yukari brushes him off as reading too much into things, then immediately checks to make sure the main character hasn't told anybody "about last night". Cue Junpei's jaw dropping open, and Yukari freaking out as she realizes what he thinks she means.
  • Mass Effect 2 has a memorable example from Garrus Vakarian if you romance him as a female Shepard: "You know me. I always like to savor the last shot before popping the heat sink... wait. That metaphor just went somewhere horrible."
  • Also from BioWare, Dragon Age has awkward, virginal Alistair agree to sex with a female Warden romancing him thus, if she initiates it: "I don't know, I'm willing to give it a shot, if you are." The Warden can lampshade this unintentional bad choice of phrasing nastily with "'Give it a shot'? You weren't joking about the idiot part" - but Alistair will be very hurt and dump her if you do this.
  • From Baten Kaitos: Origins:

Sagi: I'll... get wood. (Beat) At the tree! Tree wood!


Visual Novels[edit | hide]

"Okay Justice, time to take advantage of her... I mean of her mistake."

    • The first game also has one in the second case:

"I'll get to this woman's bottom! Wait... I mean... you know what I mean."

  • In fault milestone one, Rune, a mysterious but clumsy girl, wants to help out Ritona and Sephine on their trek:

"I-I know it's a real odd request to make of strangers, but there's something about you two that I just can't wrap up my tongue around!
...Wait... That came out wrong."

Web Animation[edit | hide]

  • This exchange from Spriggs, a Halo 3 Machinima:

Triple M: (referring to General Vollin) Bitch.
Meme: EXCUSE ME!?
Triple M: No, not you, the other bitch... Oh, that came out wrong!

Strong Bad: I think we may have gotten our... "weens" crossed.
Strong Sad: Can you please never say that again?


Web Comics[edit | hide]

Thief: Hey, his awkward admission dooms the team. Mine only dooms the whole world and possibly not us. (beat) That sounded less damning in my head.

Helen: It's not pleasant, but Dave and I will have to swap spit!
(Beat Panel)
Mell: Um... I don't think that came out the way you meant it--
Helen: Oh, yes it did.

Kate: So, where to now?
Gina: Don't you remember? I told you in bed this morning.
... It sounded fine in my head.

Torquel: Hey, where were you the day of Le Noir's party?
Asher: Giving birth to his daughter.
Torquel: ... What?
Asher: No, wait, that came out wrong.

Agatha: We're just going to kill you, and then you'll be fine!

  • Venus Envy: Larson discovers there is no hot water in the boys' showers and tries to sneak into the girls' showers, thinking they're empty. Lisa finds him and starts screaming at him. He responds with "Oh, like I've never been in a girls' locker room before!" Lisa, who does not know that Larson is in fact a female-to-male Transsexualism, interprets this the obvious way and slaps him.
  • Wapsi Square has a double example.
  • Think Before You Think: In this comic, after Julia reveals that she's Going Commando, Brian says, "Hey, don't worry. I was bound to find out eventually," because he can read minds and he tends to know things.
  • The Order of the Stick has General Tarquin says the following (believing he's speaking to a gay man):

Tarquin: I'll see what I can do about getting us playing on the same team. The same army team. Not the, you know, "other team" team. Like I said, I could use more men like you under me... and I realize that maybe that wasn't the best turn of phrase, either.

Black can do things that people think of as good, just as White can do things that people think of as evil. (If you don’t understand that I’m talking about Magic the Gathering's color pie, this reads poorly.)

  • Homestuck has a conversation between Dave and Rose:

DAVE: ill be the ambassador to your mom
DAVE: and no that wasnt actually meant as the sick burn it sounded like

    • Additionally:

TT: Mine and DS's. It's a joint proposal. I'm always authorized to speak on his behalf, because I'm basically fucking him.
TT: And try not to take those last four words as a clustered literal sentiment. That would be lame and unfunny.

    • Ass well as:

uu: THERE ARE ONLY A FEW MOVES LEFT.
uu: BEFORE I CAN MATE WITH HER.
TT: Whoa.
uu: WAIT. Fu CK. WHAT DID I SAY?
uu: I MEAN.
uu: BEFORE I CAN MATE HER.
uu: MATE. AS IN CHECK MATE. IT'S A FI Gu RE OF GODDAMN SPEECH.

Web Original[edit | hide]

Dan: I like combining my man-parts with those of a child.
Mandy: ...Huh?
Dan: I... like combining my man parts with those of a child?
(Mandy looks disgusted and leaves)
Dan: Why did I say it twice?

Notes to self:
Talking to a person about being into the hardcore gaming scene is completely different than talking to them about the hardcore anime scene. In future, I must find a new adjective.
And do not, I repeat, do not say "if she is really into the hardcore anime scene, I can get import DVD's from Japan and Hong Kong" when I'm talking to a 14-year-old girl's mother.
Further notation: Do not attempt to salvage this by then saying "I mean, I can get DVD's from Japan that you can't get here."
Next time, say "really likes anime" and "can get DVD's not on sale here yet."

Mrs. Chulkris read off attendance, and began today's lesson, something about Ley Lines. I couldn't pay that much attention, because Nikki kept running her finger over my bracelet. Finally, I snatched my wrist away.
Mrs. Chulkris stopped the lesson. "Is there a problem?"
"Yeah! Nikki keeps fondling my bling-bling!" From the hoots of derision, I could tell that I could have phrased that better.

  • Happens very often to Marik in Marik Plays Bloodlines. They are usually accompanied by the sound of Bakura bursting into laughter in the background. Marik rarely gets it.

Marik: This isn't the first time I've shot in a guy's face!
Bakura: (dies of laughter)
Marik: You're awfully giggly today, Bakura...

Robert Brockway: Yes, here they are, eight prime examples of why I love men.... Wait, that came out wrong! Don't start the list ye--


Western Animation[edit | hide]

Amanda Waller: Bruce's DNA was easy enough to obtain. He left it all over town.
(beat while Terry looks horrified)
Amanda Waller: Not remotely what I meant.
(cut to a shot of Batman being bandaged by a paramedic)

  • Carl The Evil Cockroach Wizard says that verbatim in an episode of Yin Yang Yo.
  • Owen of Total Drama Island (and Action) has done this repeatedly.

Owen: I'm glad we're in a separate cabin with just guys!... I mean, no! Not like that! I love the ladies. I just don't want to sleep with them. NO! Wait!

  • Family Guy
    • When Brian told Lois that a lovestruck Meg made him eat the hair from her pie (punch). But wait, Stewie had some too (punch).
    • Played with in another episode where Peter is teaching Meg how to find a boyfriend. Obviously referencing the idiom "Beating someone off with a stick", Peter says to Meg "Soon you'll be beating off guys with both hands". The audience 'waits for it' but, Peter being Peter, he doesn't catch onto what he said.
    • The same episode did a similar gag with Lois and Chris.

Lois: All right, now that we've practised kissing and cuddling, it's time to practice eating out... at a fancy restaurant!

    • In "Peter's Got Woods when Brian dates Meg's African-American teacher Shauna, and talk about her job at the school.

Brian: You know, I've always wondered why they named it after James Woods, you know? I mean, there's gotta be somebody more deserving. Like, just, you know, off the top of my head, uh, I don't know, Sidney Poitier, uh, Reggie Jackson, Martin Luther King, uh, you know, those are just three names that come to mind.
Shauna: Brian, that's a great idea! We should get them to rename the school after Dr. King.
Brian: You like Dr. King? Because I love Dr. King. I love MLK, man. He's-he's my guy. He's-he's... I mean, I love all black people. You know, I mean, if I... if I could take all the black people in the world, and just, you know, just buy a farm somewhere and, and let them all... Uh, whoa, you know, what? That, uh, actually, that didn't really come out right.

  • South Park both subverts and plays straight. For example:

Cartman's mom: (ring up Kyle's mom) Uhm, Sheila? I'm sorry to trouble you with this but apparently your son has a picture of Eric with another boy's penis in his mouth.
Kyle's mom: ... ... excuse me?

Zuko: I want my father to not think I'm worthless.
Iroh: I'm sure he doesn't! Why would he banish you if he didn't care?
(Zuko shoots him an angry glare and walks off)
Iroh: ... That came out wrong, didn't it?

  • The title character of Ruby Gloom, shortly before a major public appearance, gets what's supposed to be a motivational speech from her friend Misery:

Misery: Oh, yeah -- don't worry about failing, even though you only have this one day to get it right and if you mess it up you'll never be invited back ever... that didn't come out right. See you there.

  • Archer: Mallory Archer does this all the time.

Mallory: You wanna play me hard?
Sterling: Phrasing.
Mallory: Well, then, you better nut up!
Sterling: Phrasing!
Mallory: Because I've swallowed just about all I'm going to take from you!
Sterling: Hey! Phrasing!

  • One episode of American Dad has Jeff running off to Burning Man with a brain-washed Francine. Stan suggests that he and daughter Hailey should date to get back at Jeff/Francine.

Stan: Wait a minute... Daddy didn't think that through.

Bubbie: He doesn't live with me. He lives inside me. (pause) My mouth! He lives inside my mouth! (pause) That sounds weirder than it is.

Casey: April, I love you like... like Gretzky loves hockey, and I wanna play you for the rest of my life... Dah! I mean your life! I-I mean Gretsky's life! I mean--

  • Young Justice
    • A serious one occurs in "Homefront". Robin and Artemis are looking at the security footage to find out what ambushed their friends, only for all four cameras to be wiped out while recording the ambush.

Robin: That's it. All four are dead.
(Artemis looks at him in horror)
Robin: (hurriedly) The cameras. I meant the cameras.

    • A more humorous version happens in "Humanity".

Zatanna: Tornado never knew my moves!
Robin: And I bet you've got some good ones!
(Beat)
Robin: Whoa! Sorry, that may have come off a little too Wally.
Zatanna: I don't mind.

  • A subversion in an episode of Sealab 2021. Marco leaves some tamales outside Quinn's door and tells Debbie that they should leave without bothering him because he'll probably be "busy with that hooker for awhile." Cue Debbie's outraged "WHAT?!? A HOOKER?!??" and several minutes of people going "Uh-oh!" Finally:

Debbie: I can’t believe he’s with a hooker!
Marco: No, no! He’s watching T. J. Hooker.
Debbie: I thought you said he was with a hooker.
Marco: No, he’s watching TJ Hooker. On television.
Marco: (laughs)
Debbie: (laughs)
Marco: (laughs)
Debbie: (laughs)
Marco: (laughs) ... with a prostitute.
Debbie: WHAT!?!

  • The Fairly OddParents two-part episode "School's Out: The Musical" has the Pixies persuading Flappy Bob into wishing for the world to be boring. Trying to stop them, Timmy tells Bob he knows the Pixies are the ones who gave him all he wanted and Timmy is the one who tore down his dream but Bob needs to listen to Timmy. Timmy then realizes his mistake.


Real Life[edit | hide]

  • This pastor's blooper reminds us all of the importance of good enunciation while preaching.
  • BBC Radio 4 has a reputation for being mealy-mouthed, which makes this[3] rather amusing. Note also the "coughing fit" that follows.
  • British cricket commentator Brian Johnston was well known for generating highly quotable gaffes, including the often quoted "The bowler's Holding, the batsman's Willey".
  1. "Hit it" is slang for "have sex with."
  2. Oh is that what they're calling it now?
  3. James Naughtie accidentally pronouncing Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt's last name with a C