movie quotes The Greatest 80s Catch Phrases  

Alan Lewis
3.4k votes 852 voters 682.6k views 20 items Embed

List of the greatest, most memorable, and most popular catch phrases from 80s. Sayings and catch phrases are a fixture in pop culture, and the generation that came of age during the 1980s should get a rush of nostalgia from revisiting these "pre-Internet memes" and jokes from 30 years ago or more.

A number of these catch phrases have remained popular, or have undergone a renaissance in recent years. Mr. T's memorable quote, "I pity the fool" has remained his most recognizable routine, and figured in to the recent big screen adaptation of the show "The A-Team." Al Pacino's delivery of the key line from Brian De Palma's "Scarface" remains a frequently parodied and iconic movie moment. This just goes to show that 80s quotes are more easily remembered if they are regularly repeated and resurfaced... so, by all means, feel free!

Though catch phrases are often depicted as hacky or mocked as a low-brow form of comedy, no matter how witty they are, it's undeniable that they have the power to connect millions of people around a humorous phrase or observation. What are the best catch phrases from the 80s? Tell us: what's your favorite 80s saying? Below are 20 of our favorite examples. Vote for your favorite catch phrases from the 80s and leave other funny suggestions in the comments!
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Whatchu talkin' 'bout, willis?


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Video: YouTube

ORIGIN:
The popular catchphrase said in almost every episode by Gary Coleman's character "Arnold" in the popular 80s TV show Diff'rnt Strokes.

USE:
The catchphrase penetrated pop culture in a way that few others have. It's still the thing that has carried Gary Coleman's career, and will forever be his legacy. They had plenty of guest stars come on the show, and occasionally they would be graced with Arnold delivering his famous catchphrase.

Say what you will about Coleman, or catchphrases in general, but these moments were often the highlight of every episode.

Now, some people use it as just a way to ask what someone is saying.
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128 42

I've fallen and I can't get up


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Video: YouTube

ORIGIN:
An infomercial where an old woman falls, can't get up, and delivers the line in such a cheeseball, ridiculous fashion that people couldn't help but laugh. The incident in the commercial is actually supposed to be quite dire, but give it to America to make one, long, ongoing joke about it.

USE:
Whenever anyone falls, say the line the way the old woman said it in the commercial, as melodramatically as possible.
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108 53

I want my mtv


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Video: YouTube

ORIGIN:
An original slogan for  MTV to convince audiences to demand their cable companies to pick up the channel. The edgy music video channel launched a new era of music videos, VJ's, and "live" music news (and remember when MTV actually played music?).

USE:
It was a call to musical action for an entire generation. The same way the campaign in the video to the left said it, people would say it in sitcoms, in real life, and in various places in pop culture to give young people a voice through their TV channel.

That concept is now moot.
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100 49

Pardon me, do you have any grey poupon?


Ranker Video
Video: YouTube

ORIGIN:
An 80s advertisement for mustard, as seen in the video to the left. Two Rolls Royces pull up next to each other, one passenger asks the other if they have any Grey Poupon, and the other says "but of course".

USE:
A slogan that was used for Grey Poupon for MANY years to follow, it also penetrated pop culture by becoming a staple joke of the upper class.