Learn to curse like they do on TV! You can get away with a lot on family television and in real life if you use alien cusses to do your dirty work.
Here’s our selection of fabulous F-bombs and shitty stand-ins, bolstered with other colorful language from science fiction television to make your day shiny.
As they would say on Star Trek, Frak is infinitely useful in infinite combinations. The number one way to use the F word on family television, Battlestar Galactica gets away with frak, frakking, mother-fraker, frak off, frak you, frak me, frakked up, you’re frakked, let’s frak, and even more creative variants like clusterfrak or “I guaran-frakkin-tee you”._
Even the gentler 1970s original-flavor BSG used frak, albeit spelled with a C, as in Frack.
You’ve probably heard of this curse. It’s even made it into the Urban Dictionary. There’s no escaping the almighty frak.
Frell and Farbot
Farscape is littered with wonderful alien curses. Frell and Farbot are two of the best ones, although I have a soft spot for Dren and Hezmana as well. Frell has the same meaning as Frak and does the heavy lifting for Farscape’s amusingly shady characters.
Yet another way to say the F word on TV. Felota actually means poop (as in ‘floaters’), but as another literal “F” word, it rolls nicely off the tongue. If you haven’t picked up a bit of Belter Creole from The Expanse, you aren’t even trying. Sasa ke, Beltalowda?
Gorram and Ruttin’
While most curses on Firefly are contained in impressively creative strings of Mandarin, Jane and Mal use these two most of all. Gorram sounds remarkably like taking the Lord’s name in vain. Ruttin’ is used for its literal meaning as opposed to its sound.
Shiny is another term used well and frequently on the series, but it stands unique as a ‘nice word’ in science fiction. It may be the exact opposite of a curse. It’s still worth mentioning. Does Kaylee ever curse?
Seriously, some of these Mandarin epithet strings from Firefly are amazing, with translations equivalent to Stupid Inbred Stack of Meat, Extraordinarily Impatient Buddha, Stupid Son of a Drooling Whore and a Monkey, and Filthy Fornicators of Livestock. Joss Whedon and his dialog writers never let us down.
Used in Star Trek: Enterprise, this sticks out because Trek is not known for hard cursing. (Well, before Star Trek: Discovery and Picard). At least among humans: Klingons and Romulans do use bad language, often enough that I can recall P’taq and Veruul respectively, offhand. But shale was used by humans in the Enterprise episode Terra Nova, and it works well vis a vis their ship-lost culture. The “Novans” live underground. Shale is known to be a treacherous rock and is close enough to ‘shit’ to be a natural.
So feel free to pepper your language with Shale, or else go with Captain Kirk’s famous “double-dumb ass on you'” from The Voyage Home. “Dammit, Jim” is really too tame to bother with here. 😉
Reaching way back in time to the 70s, Mork from Ork snuck this version of bullshit under the radar on family-friendly prime time television. Pat yourself on the back if you’re old enough to remember Mork & Mindy.
In cool news: the Mork, Happy Days, and Lavern & Shirley crews inhabit the same universe. That’s what a little YouTube search will net you. #MindBlown
Fun but a bit more esoteric. If you’re a big Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Universe fan, you’ll recall the book says of Belgium: “the concept it embodies is so revolting that the publication or broadcast of the word is utterly forbidden in all parts of the galaxy except one, where they don’t know what it means.” Douglas Adams FTW!
Hitchhiker’s Guide did make it as a mildly agreeable movie. I don’t recall if they say Belgium anywhere in it. Help me out? Comment section is below.
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Co-Creator of RunPee, Chief of Operations, Content Director, and Managing Editor. RunPee Jilly likes galaxy-spanning sci fi, superhero sagas, fantasy films, YA dystopians, action thrillers, chick flicks, and zany comedies, in that order…and possesses an inspiringly small bladder. In fact, that little bladder sparked the creation of RunPee. (Good thing she’s learned to hold it.)