Minced oaths

Discussion in 'Deep Space Nine' started by Melakon, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2012
    Location:
    Melakon's grave
    I was watching "The Dogs of War" and the Closed Captioning surprised me a bit. When Quark is talking to Zek over a bad supspace connection, Zek says:

    [​IMG]

    What surprised me is the writers use a word the dictionary defines as vulgar slang.

    Not sure why this image is overflowing into ad space. It's less than 640x480, which I thought were maximum limits.
     
  2. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2009
    Location:
    T'Girl
    While frigging is considered a vulgar term, it's way way down at the bottom end of the scale. Usually a cleaner replacement for more objectionable words.
     
  3. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2012
    Location:
    Melakon's grave
    Yeah, i guess that's it. Part of my reaction may be from remembering the days when George Carlin's "Seven Words You Can't Say On Television" was 100% true.
     
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    In the original script, the word "frigging" is in parentheses, indicating that it was meant to be obscured by static and inaudible to the viewer. Whoever wrote the closed captioning missed that and ruined the effect.

    In-universe, we could imagine that perhaps Zek really said "frinxing." In the book Legends of the Ferengi by Ira Steven Behr and Robert Hewitt Wolfe, it's established that a Ferengi named Frinx manufactured the first automatic waste extractor (i.e. toilet), so his name became synonymous with, err, the use of that amenity. Following this lead, a number of the novels have used "frinx" as a Ferengi curse word.
     
  5. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2012
    Location:
    Melakon's grave
    Thanks for that script link, Christopher. And I see I didn't think twice about Zek saying that greedy (bastard) in the same speech, which was also captioned.
     
  6. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2000
    Location:
    QC, IL, USA
    Frigging is to Fuck as Crap is to Shit. Pretty harmless. They've said far worse.
     
  7. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2012
    Location:
    Melakon's grave
    Yeah, but usually not on televised Star Trek, especially in those days. Wall to wall cussing didn't really start until ST: Enterprise.

    edit: It doesn't offend me, I'm simply surprised in terms of broadcast standards. I suspect the writers put the scene together gleefully imagining Wallace Shawn's delivery, who is hilarious in comedy.
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Like I said, it wasn't actually audible onscreen. But it's not like it's actually a curse word; it's a euphemism. It's a nonsense word that sounds similar to a curse word -- something you can say on TV as a substitute for the word you can't say.
     
  9. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2012
    Location:
    Melakon's grave
    Of course, back in the days when producer Norman Lear was a comedy show impressario, one of Bea Arthur's Maude episodes ended with her embracing her on-screen husband, and chiding "Walter, Walter, Walter... You son of a bitch." Which was pretty shocking for a 1970s network show.