"Seventies TV's 10 Top Catchphrases"
by Carrie Bell
1. "Come on down!" (The Price Is Right, 1972)
To get to The Price Is Right's Showcase Showdown, you must first hear this
battle cry. Host Bob Barker recalls: "They started as three simple words in
the first (CBS episode in 1972), but our late, great anouncer Johnny Olson
said them in his special way and they became legendary. I've heard them in
commercials and movies, and tourists scream them out to me every place I
visit, including inside a volcano in Costa Rica."
2. "Sit on it!" (Happy Days, 1975)
"(Creator) Garry Marshall always said the audience that repeats what we say
is the audience that comes back for 11 years," says Henry "Fonzie" Winler of
the theory behind Happy Days taglines. He would know, as the ladies' man kick-
started plenty of catchy expressions, including this command from 1975 for
shutting someone -- usually Potsie -- down. Eventually, "the boys picked it
up. Then Tom (Bosley) varied it up. Marion (Ross) was bugging him while
knitting and he said, 'Knit on it.' That's comedy."
4. "We are two wild and crazy guys!" (Saturday Night Live, 1977)
Dan Aykroyd and Steve Martin first donned the gold medallions and polyester
threads on Saturday Night Live in 1977 to become the Festrunk brothers,
immigrants on the make. Unfortunately for them, thanks to inappropriate
comments said in broken English, the American foxes never bought what these
disco-era swingers were selling.
5. "Stifle, Edith!" (All In the Family, 1971)
Archie Bunker barked a lot of things at his put-upon wife, Edith, on All In the
Family. In 1971 came this creative way of saying "Shut Up" whenever he
thought she was making a dingbat of herself.
6. "Dyn-o-mite!" (Good Times, 1974)
While there wasn't a lot for the Evans family to be excited about (they lived
in the projects and were discriminated against), Good Times writers like Jay
Leno found plenty of reasons for J.J. to use his signature exclamation, which
debuted in 1974. Jimmie Walker's overuse of the phrase and growing bug-eyed
buffoonery led both Esther Rolle and John Amos to quit in protest.
7. "Up your nose with a rubber hose!" (Welcome Back, Kotter, 1975)
Welcome Back, Kotter's Sweathogs had a knack for spouting rhyming insults.
Putdowns like this, reportedly coined in 1975 by executive producer James
Komack, created something of a controversy outside the walls of James
Buchanan High when Boston's ABC affiliate initially banned the show, saying
it "advocated the kind of bad attitudes that are not proper behavior in the
8. "The devil made me do it!" (The Flip Wilson Show, 1970)
Geraldine Jones, one of Flip Wilson's characters on his eponymous show, was
known for her loud dresses, $49 wig and quips like this sassy excuse from
1970 (along with "What you see is what you get"). Muhammad Ali even admitted
on the show, "I thought I could talk, but I've met my match."
9. "Whatchoo talkin' 'bout, Willis?" (Diff'rent Strokes, 1978)
This winner was a stroke of luck caused by 10-year-old newcomer Gary Coleman
during the 1978 filming of the Diff'rent Strokes pilot. Shortly after the
orphaned brothers moved into Mr. Drummond's penthouse, Willis told Arnold not
to "get too used to this place." The response was a scripted "What are you
talking about Willis?" but Coleman's quick mush-mouth-meets-jive delivery
turned it into a household phrase.
10. "Who loves ya, baby?" (Kojak, 1974)
As the "Who's your daddy?" of the '70s, this query cannot be quoted without
conjuring up memories of bald, lollipop-loving, streetwise, stylish Lt. Theo
Kojak. Telly Savales didn't ad-lib the line until well into Kojak's first
season, in 1974. In the USA Network's 2005 remake, Ving Rhames has repeated
the phrase, along with keeping the suckers.
- TV Guide, 8/21/05.
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