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The opposite of Unusual Euphemism, a character replaces an ordinary phrase with an unnecessarily obscene or crude one. There are several examples in ordinary usage, see The Other Wiki for examples, but this trope is for particularly imaginative ones.

Truth in Television for members of high-stress professions like emergency medicine, police work, fire fighting, and other first responders. Medical slang in particular is loaded with harsh terms that patients might find offensive and inappropriate, though doctors and staff claim that Black Comedy helps them to cope with the reality of their jobs.

Related to Dead Baby Comedy and Refuge in Vulgarity.

Examples of Unusual Dysphemism include:


  • Costello's mistress in The Departed lampshades the potential Unfortunate Implications of this kind of dialogue. After he makes several references in a phonecall to giving a detective "a whiff of my ass" so that he'll "crawl right in", he hangs up and turns to his girlfriend, who is reading a book on getting pregnant;

 Costello: Sweetheart, you're givin' me a hard-on...

Gwen: Are you sure it's me? Not all that talk about whiffin' and crawlin' up asses?


  • Near the beginning of John Dies at the End, John calls Dave and says, "Bring the cocaine shipment to the place where we buried the Korean transvestite."

 That was code. It meant, "Come to my place as soon as you can, it's important." Code, you know, in case the phone was bugged.

  • In the nonfiction book The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down, a couple of doctors are mentioned as referring to someone who's become a vegetable with terminology like "gorked her brain out", "fried her brain", "crapped out" and "went to hell".
  • Literature--and anything in printed form--is said by internet aficionados to be in "Dead Tree Format".

Live Action TV

  • The Wire is full of them, usually avoiding the simple word "screwed" when hideously graphic homoerotica is an option.
  • The first episode of Coupling has Jeff (true to form) describing the girl Steve is struggling to dump as "unflushable".
  • Scrubs has mentioned a few Real Life examples of doctors' acronyms, like "Get Out of My Emergency Room", and QI described a few more creative ones.

New Media

  • On the website Alternate History Dot Com and the production based on its culture, AH Dot Com the Series, Wikipedia is nicknamed "The Armenian Genocide" due to the fact that a lot of arguments have focused on the fact that it is often subject to vandalism by nationalist trolls on that issue. This has in turn led to further Unusual Dysphemisms such as "genocide" being used as a substitute for any and every other verb when describing a news story involving Armenians.
  • It isn't enough for The Angry Video Game Nerd to simply call a game bad - he has to call it things like "a steaming pile of goat shit" or "a bunch of putrid anal shit coming out of a rhinoceros's asshole".

Tabletop Games

  • The notorious F.A.T.A.L. would be bad enough without gems such as "fucksticks" and "cunt-pipes". The former appears to have been removed in most of the circulating versions, but the latter is present in all editions.

Web Comics

  • Xkcd comes up with the idea of "reverse euphemisms", where "taking a shit" actually means "dropping the kids off at the pool".
  • Dave from Homestuck's dialogue consists almost entirely of creative and obscene metaphors.

Western Animation

 Starfire: (pinning a flower on Robin's lapel) I believe on such occasions, it is customary to wear a dead plant?

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