Dren, Hezmana and Gorram Felgercarb!

The title of this post is composed of made-up swear words from various Science Fiction TV shows. I’ve recently been re-watching Farscape on Fox HD, and I’ve noticed the prevalence of amusing fictional swears. Lets take a look:


“By the yotz!”

Frell – basically it’s the F-Bomb.
Dren – lets call it an unwanted substance (sh*t)
Hezmana – replacement word for Hell – as in what the Hezmana!
Shaltan – not sure on this one- “I’ve been screaming my shaltan head off!
Mivonks – bollocks – “D’Argo is thinking with his mivonks again.

and there’s more – check out the Farscape Encyclopedia Project.

So Farscape had some innovative cursing, but what about other Sci-Fi shows? Well, Joss Whedon’s short-lived Serenity had ‘gorram’ – a simple twist on god-damn. Far more amusing was when the characters swore in Chinese: “Ching-wah tsao duh liou mahng” translates as “frog-humpin’ bastard” for example.

Lets go for something a bit more mainstream…

Battlestar Galactica.


Cyclons are referred to as ‘toasters’ in the TV show – hence the novelty value of this item.

Frak – The F-bomb again! both in the original 1978 TV show (spelt Frack) and the far superior re-imagined version used this fictional expletive . The word has transcended Battlestar Galactica and appeared in other shows including Chuck, 30 Rock, Warehouse 13 and others. The real-world F-bomb is accidentally (or not) dropped in at least two episodes though (check out Daybreak Part 1). The original Battlestar Galactica also used ‘Felgercarb’, but I’m not sure what that one translates as.

Babylon-5 also dropped a variant on the F-bomb with Delen spouting ‘Abso-fragging-lutely, dammit’. Pretty much every other line of dialog in B5 included the word ‘damn’ or ‘hell’, though intricately plotted, the dialog in that show was often pretty ropey.

The biggest of the Sci-Fi franchises, i.e the ones with ‘star’ in the title have disappointingly mundane fictional profanity. Star Wars gives us the child-like ‘laserbrain’ and ‘Nerf Herder’, as well as the rather lame Poodoo. Star Trek doesn’t really have prevalent fictional swears, there is some real-world profanity though as Picard uses the French word ‘merde’ early on in TNG’s run and characters occasionally use hell and damn. As for Stargate, I’ve drawn a frakking blank.

Finally, in Sci-Fi comedy, we have ‘smeg’ from Red Dwarf and ‘Shazbot’ from Mork and Mindy. So swearing might be the last recourse of the unintelligent to win an argument and some might say that swearing isn’t big, clever or funny. But now you can use Sci-Fi’s rather amusing swear word substitutions to perplex and amuse friends and colleagues in equal measure.


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