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The Best Clapbacks In 'Hamilton'

September 15, 2020 3.2k votes 339 voters 7.8k views15 items

List RulesVote up the clapbacks from 'Hamilton' that truly burn.

Premiering on Broadway in 2015 to widespread acclaim, Lin-Manuel Miranda's Hamilton resonated with theatergoers in a way their elementary school history classes never could. With catchy tunes, electric performances, and casting that reflects the USA's unique diversity, Hamilton continues to be a major cultural touchstone. It's also got a caustic wit that manifests in several highly-entertaining comebacks.

Whether it's Hamilton insulting Aaron Burr, Burr trading barbs with the young Revolutionaries, or Thomas Jefferson throwing shade every which way, Hamilton features some of the best clapbacks in musical theater. (Of course, real theater geeks know that two of the musical's best clapbacks - Hamilton insulting Adams, and Angelica offering a sardonic "congratulations" to Hamilton - were cut from the final version, but there are still a ton of epic putdowns to savor.)

Below are a few of the choicest selections, so upvote the ones that truly "burn."

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  • Photo: Disney+
    1

    'We Know Who's Really Doing The Planting'

    Thomas Jefferson: Ooh, if the shoe fits, wear it. If New York’s in debt, why should Virginia bear it? Uh, our debts are paid, I’m afraid. Don’t tax the South cuz we got it made in the shade. In Virginia, we plant seeds in the ground. We create. You just wanna move our money around....

    Alexander Hamilton: A civics lesson from a slaver. Hey neighbor, your debts are paid cuz you don’t pay for labor. “We plant seeds in the South. We create.” Yeah, keep ranting, we know who’s really doing the planting.

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  • Photo: Disney+
    2

    Hamilton Decides The Election Of 1800

    Alexander Hamilton: I have never agreed with Jefferson once. We have fought on like seventy-five diff’rent fronts. But when all is said and all is done, Jefferson has beliefs. Burr has none.

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  • Photo: Disney+
    3

    'Daddy's Calling'

    Thomas Jefferson: So quick-witted.

    Alexander Hamilton: Alas, I admit it.

    Jefferson: I bet you were quite a lawyer.

    Hamilton: My defendants got acquitted.

    Jefferson: Huh. Well, someone oughta remind you-

    Hamilton: What?

    Jefferson: You’re nothing without Washington behind you.

    George Washington: Hamilton!

    Jefferson: Daddy’s calling.

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  • Photo: Disney+
    4

    Angelica Shuts Hamilton Down

    Alexander Hamilton: Angelica, thank God. Someone who understands what I’m struggling here to do.

    Angelica Schuyler: I’m not here for you. 

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