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A play on the traditional greeting "Ladies and gentlemen", possibly coined by Milton Berle. Usually takes one of the following forms:

  1. "Ladies and X", where X is usually some corruption of "gentlemen".
    • A little less commonly, "X and gentlemen".
  1. "Ladies, gentlemen, and X".
  2. "X and Y," if the writers are clever enough, with plays on "ladies" and "gentlemen" respectively.

Generally not used as an insult against X -- but compare gender-based versions of My Friends and Zoidberg.

Examples of Ladies and Germs include:


Film

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 Mater: Ladies aaaand gentlecars!

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  • Parodied in Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story: Before Dewey Cox's band plays a Buddy Holly-esque song, the MC at the high school talent show uses the "ladies and germs" line on the audience. For some unexplained reason, the entire crowd finds it much more humorous than one could expect they would.
  • Kinky Boots has "Ladies, Gentlemen, and those of you who've yet to make up your minds" as the traditional greeting in the club.
  • Appears in Muppet Wizard of Oz as "Ladies and gentlemen... and unisex penguins."
  • In A Night at the Opera, Groucho Marx's character begins his speech to the opera attendees thus: "Ladies and gentlemen...I guess that takes in most of you."
  • Star Trek Nemesis, before his musical number, Data addresses the audience as "Ladies and gentlemen... and invited transgendered species".
  • Played straight in the SWAT team scene in Se7en.
  • A Knight's Tale: "My Lords, my Ladies... And everyone else here not seated upon a cushion!"
  • The white rabbit from Disney's Alice In Wonderland: "Your Majesty; members of the jury; loyal subjects; [dismissively] and the King..."
  • In the 2001 Dune movie, Paul gets a little drunk and takes the piss out of the Harkonnens by pretending to make a speech as the Baron.
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 Paul: "Gentleman and ladies! I use the terms loosely."

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 Slim: Ladies and gentlebugs! Larvae of all stages!

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 Om: "Ladies, gentlemen....babes..."

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Literature

  • Spider Robinson, in many Callahans Crosstime Saloon stories: "Genties and ladlemen".
  • In Screwtape Proposes a Toast by CS Lewis, the titular toast is introduced by Screwtape with the words, "Mr Principal, your Imminence, your Disgraces, my Thorns, Shadies and Gentledevils..."
  • In the Star Wars Expanded Universe, it seems like the standard form is "ladies and gentlebeings".
  • In Eric Frank Russell's anthology "Men, Martians, and Machines," chronicling the adventures of the crew of the spaceship Upskadaska City, the Martian members of the crew start speeches to the (all-male) crew with "gentlemen and adults." Since the Martians are male too, this is not a gender distinction but a piece of Martian snark.

Live Action TV

  • Doctor Who, "The End of the World": "Ladies and gentlemen and trees and multiforms..."
    • Also in "The Long Game": "Ladies, gentlemen, multi-sex, undecided or robot..."
    • "Midnight": "Ladies and gentlemen, and variations thereupon..." Used twice, the second time with rather more strain than the first.
  • Henrietta Hippo uses the Trope Namer "Ladies and germs..." as part of her pathetic comedy act in an episode of New Zoo Revue.
  • The Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode "Homecoming" has "Ladies, gentlemen, spiny-headed looking creatures..."
  • Hawkeye would use the Trope Namer "Ladies and germs" on at least one early MASH episode.
    • Also, in the episode where Colonel Blake appointed Hawkeye chief surgeon, Hawkeye began his acceptance speech, "Good evening, ladies and gentlemen...and anyone in-between."
  • An episode of Bill Nye the Science Guy used "ladies and germs" during an episode on...well...germs.
  • An scene of ICarly shows Freddie walking into the room, saying, "Hello ladies. Or should I say lady and Sam[1]".
  • On The Suite Life on Deck, we get "Ladies and Quentilmen" from London. It wasn't said with any mean subtext, she's just that dumb.
  • In an episode of Will and Grace, Karen is making a grand entrance at a gay rights rally, and announces "Ladies, Gentlemen, and undecided."
  • In one episode of Red Dwarf, Lister begins a toast with "Gentlemen...and skutters..."
    • Well, there are no women on board.
      • Although to be fair Lister is the only actual "gentleman" on board ... the others being a cat, a hologram and a mechanoid.
  • Billy Crystal opened one Academy Awards show with "Ladies, gentlemen... and Felicity Huffman." (The joke was that she had been nominated for her role as a transsexual in Transamerica.)
  • In one episode of The Big Comfy Couch, Lunette took on the role of a circus ringmaster and said, "Ladies and jellybeans! Boys and gorillas!"
  • Everyone's favourite storytelling zombie has this gem:
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  Crypt Keeper: "Welcome, boils and ghouls!"

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Radio

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 "Your majesty, your most royal highness, your grace, your excellency, your worships, my lords, ladies and gentlemen... tables, chairs, napkins and cruets... curtains, cutlery... things in the soup... gravy on the tablecloths... stars on Sunday, raindrops on roses, whiskers on kittens, bright copper kettles and warm woollen mittens, brown paper packages tied up with strings, these are a few of my favourite things..."

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  • From an episode of Hello Cheeky:
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 "Ladies and gentlemen...and Gladys Suavely..."

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    • They also had this:
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 "My lords, my ladies, my dukes, my duchesses, my earls, your most royal highnesses, ladies and gentlemen...the building is on fire."

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Theatre

  • In Cabaret, the MC doesn't change the wording, but makes his feelings clear whenever he says "Ladies!... and gentlemen."

Video Games

Web Comics

  • Bruno the Bandit shows us how complicated this can be in a fantasy world. (The wizard eventually gets sent to multicultural sensitivity training.)
  • Axel from Ansem Retort gives this gem: "Ladies, Gentleman, Marluxia of the jury..."

Western Animation

  • Futurama had a wrestling announcer say "Ladies, gentlemen and smizmars...". We don't find out what a smizmar is for a few more seasons.
    • Also in Futurama, Hedonismbot: "Courtesans and gentlefops..."
    • Speaking of Zoidberg, he actually Lampshaded this in Futurama. "Good evening, ladies and germs. (Rimshot) That wasn't a joke. I was talking to Dean Streptococcus."
  • Teen Titans: Cyborg does this just before revealing his hand-built T-Car to the rest of the team:
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 Cyborg: Ladies and gentlemen, and whatever Beast Boy is...

Beast Boy: (stops drum roll) Hey! Do you want your drum roll or not?!

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    • At the time, Beast Boy had transformed into a lemur and was hitting his belly to perform said drum roll.
  • Cow and Chicken: Chicken is in prison and The Devil the Red Guy, who is the warder, enters. The entire group of convicts are men. So Red goes: "Laaaaaaddddddiiiiiieeeeeeees!!!!!!!... and gentlemen".
    • Another instance in Cow and Chicken is when Cow wrote the school play "The Ugliest Weenie". They greeted the audience with "Ladies and Germans."
  • "Ladies and Gentlesnorks" is used in The Snorks.
  • Jimmy Neutron: "Ladies and gentlemen... and Cindy."
  • Used in The Fairly Odd Parents:
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  Timmy: Ladies...and Timmy Turner's Dad!

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 Ms. Borginnis: "Sexual harassment" is an umbrella term. It doesn't just cover women, but also men. And transgender individuals.

Hank: * groans*

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  Announcer: Ladies and gentlemen- ah who am I kidding, just gentlemen.

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    • In another episode, Bart introduces himself at a contest by saying "Ladles and jelly spoons!"
    • In the Treehouse of Horror sequence "The Island of Doctor Hibert," Homer addresses the animal/human hybrids as "manimals" and "invertibroads."


Comedy

  • More than one sketch comedy troupe: Ladies and gentlemen, mesdames et monsieurs, bozos and bozettes ....
  • Hosting the 2006 Oscars, Jon Stewart said, "Good evening ladies, gentlemen... Felicity."
  • Eddie Izzard often addresses his audience as "Ladies and Jellyspoons..."
  • From the highly esteemed Goon Show: "My Lords, Ladies, and other National Assistance holders..."

Music

  • Rapper Slick Rick begins his song "Mona Lisa" with the introduction "Ladies, gentlemen... and lowlifes."
  • "Business" from The Eminem Show begins with him saying to listeners, "Bitches and gentlemen..."
  • The immortal Anna Russell began her "Introduction to the Concert (By the Women's Club President)" with, "Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen ... and others. — I'm sorry, of course I know all our members are ladies and gentlemen. What I meant to say was, some of you have brought friends."
  • A live recording of Finnegan's Wake by The Dubliners begins with Ronnie Drew adressing "The Lord Mayor, Your Excellencies, ladies, gentlemen... and fellow peasants".

Newspaper Comics

  • A Bloom County strip features a grade-school math teacher (who may or may not be drunk) addressing his class as "ladles and gentlemints" before embarking on a lesson about fractions, which is simply a thinly-disguised rant about his low pay.
  • Garfield once greeted his audience as "Ladies and Germs" while on the fence for a show.

Radio

  • Among the many nonsense expressions of The Goon Show was Seagoon's address, "Ladies and Gintlepong..."
    • One episode has Bloodnok start a speech "Ladies, gentlemen and wogs..." This line, and some similar later ones, are omitted from repeats on BBC7.

Oral Tradition

  • A famous rhyme/faux speech begins with the words "Ladles and Jellyspoons". Past that there are many versions, but it always begins with those words.
  • The 'One Fine Day' rhyme sometimes starts with 'Ladies and gentlemen/hobos and tramps/cross eyed mosquitoes/and bowlegged ants,'

Real Life

  • The former German federal president Heinrich Lübke, an acknowledged and frequently parodied poor public speaker, is often reported to have begun a speech with "Ladies and Gentlemen, dear Negroes" while on a state visit to Africa. (Despite his track record, however, this particular quote appears to be an Urban Legend lacking actual verification.)
  • The current king of Sweden pulled one of these off giving a public speech a few years ago.
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  "Distinguished foreign guests, Mr Speaker, Members of the Riksdag, Mr Minister of State, Chairman of the County Council.[Beat]Dear citizens of Örebro."

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    • He was giving the speech in Arboga.
  • Reversal: the traditional start of some auto races, especially the Indianapolis Five Hundred, is 'Gentlemen, start your engines!'. Then the women started showing up, and a few wondered how to adapt. The solution? 'Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines!'.
  • The Disney theme parks always opened announcements with, "Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls!" Others have taken that up as homage or parody.
  • In England, the proper way to greet a crowd is "Ladies, gentlemen, and officers of the Royal Navy", due to a decree by Queen Victoria stating that officers of the Royal Navy are not considered gentlemen.
    • That implies that the enlisted ranks are gentlemen.
    • No, it implies that only army officers are gentlemen. I wonder why.
      • What about the RAF?
      • Queen Victoria has not seen fit to make a pronouncement on the status of RAF officers.
  • The Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus(and circuses in general) often have the ringmaster begin the show with, "Ladies and Gentlemen, Children of All Ages!"
  • John Lennon to the audience of the Royal Variety Show: "Would the people in the cheaper seats clap your hands. And the rest of you, if you'll just rattle your jewelry..."

Web Original

  • Linkara likes to open with "Ladies and gentlemen and others, welcome... to Atop The Fourth Wall."
  • A Homestar Runner cartoon had Strong Bad addressing an audience with "Good evening, mostly peoples."
  • Christian Weston Chandler's FUTURE MESSAGE began with "Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, and dudes of all teenages."

Notes

  1. a girl
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