Double entendres

Just watched a re-run of a Psych episode — I’m a fan of this silly show — on the USA network, where the program was repeatedly interrupted by an ad for the film Little Fockers, which will soon play on that network. The ad revels in repetitions of the family name, mostly to suggest fucker. Hugely unsubtle double entendres, which become wearing in even just one playing of a short ad.

It starts with the film’s name, a play on little fuckers. Fucker used non-literally of a person is often disparaging, but can be used as a affectively neutral but rude synonym for person (or, often, guy); details in Sheidlower’s The F Word. The phrase little fucker (which isn’t in Sheidlower) can then be used to refer disparagingly to a kid, or neutrally — but it also has a somewhat affectionate use, which is suggested in the punning title Little Fockers. There are plenty of hits for cute little fuckers, some referring to things or animals, but many referring to kids.

The ad manages to work in the inevitable Mother Focker, playing on motherfucker (note the accentual difference — motherfucker has primary accent on the first element, while Mother Focker has it on the second), but also has the God Focker, playing on the Godfather.

(Note on double entendre: the English expression is taken from a now-obsolete French expression; ‘double understanding’ is now conveyed in French by double entente.)

On the film, from Wikipedia:

Little Fockers (known as Meet the Parents: Little Fockers in the United Kingdom and Southeast Asia) is a 2010 American comedy film and sequel to Meet the Parents (2000) and Meet the Fockers (2004). It stars Robert De Niro, Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson, Blythe Danner, Teri Polo, Dustin Hoffman and Barbra Streisand. The first film in the series not to be directed by Jay Roach, it is instead directed by Paul Weitz with Roach as one of the producers. Likewise, Stephen Trask, a relative newcomer, takes over composing duties from veteran Randy Newman. In addition to the original cast, Little Fockers features Jessica Alba, Laura Dern and Harvey Keitel. It received generally negative reviews but was a box office success, grossing over $310 million worldwide.

I haven’t seen any of the Focker movies, and I’ll be passing on the chance to catch this one on tv; it sounds like a real stinker.

2 Responses to “Double entendres”

  1. Julian Lander Says:

    I saw _Meet the Parents_, probably on an airplane. Not a very good movie, but to see Dustin Hoffman and Barbra Streisand do comedy is kind of fun. But I don’t need to see it again. (I am firmly convinced that Barbra Streisand has comedic talent enough for a career even if she had no voice, but that may not be a widely shared opinion.)

  2. rjp Says:

    Stan Boardman (Scouse comedian) used to do a joke about Fokkers.

    starts about 1:10

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