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Author Topic: That's the beauty of it -- it doesn't do anything!
snopes
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Comment: There is this frenzy going on over message boards over a supposed
movie quote that seems to be familiar to everyone, but no one can figure
out what movie it is from. The quote is "That's the beauty of it...it
doesn't DO anything!" I was just wondering if there could be some
investigation over the origin and if we can get some answers, or if it's
just similar to a bunch of different movie quotes, which makes it sound so
familiar.

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faceless007
We Wish You a Merry Giftmas


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I seem to remember snopesters tackling a similar problem sometime last year (I think even Roger Ebert tackled it in an Answer Man column), but it was a different quote.

This one, likewise, sounds like I've heard it before, but I have no idea from where.

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Egg Note
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It sounds like something from The Simpsons to me.

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Okay, just to make it clear, there is a real world out there. No really, there is. I checked.

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Cervus
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The supposed quote that we debated here on the ULMB about a year ago was:

"What does it do?"
"Do? It doesn't DO anything - that's the beauty of it!"

Everything from Catch-22 to James Bond villians to Willy Wonka was suggested for the origin of this quote, but although everyone has heard it, no one has yet to find out where it came from.

I can hear it in my head when I read it, and it sounds like a manic Gene Wilder, but I have no idea if I'm remembering something I actually heard or if I'm hearing the "head voice" I use when reading. You know, reading something and hearing the different characters' voices in your head. I don't know if I'm the only one who does that.

It is a coincidence that I was going to pose the exact same question about this topic, wondering if anyone actually did find the source of it.

--------------------
"There is no constitutional right to sleep with endangered reptiles." -- Carl Hiaasen
Won't somebody please think of the adults!

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InfraPurple
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This google search shows it as being in The Simpsons, Ender's Game and Hitchhikers Guide to the galaxy. I didn't see the simpsons episode in question, but I have read the other two books. I knew it sounded familiar.

There's probably other places it was said, too.

ETA: Why can't I link it in UBB?

[ 24. March 2005, 07:40 AM:   snopes ]

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blucanary
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Ok is it only me who can see Hawkeye saying this at some point. I'd be hard pressed to come up with the episode though. [Confused]

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AliBaba
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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Oh good christ, not this again.

I could be wrong (always a possibility) but I seem to remember the conclusion from the last-go-round being that someone had posted the original question as being some kind of half-assed Psych expermient. That there is no such case of the exact quote showing up, but the experiment was to see how many people would chime in with "I'm just sure it's from this or that movie/tv show/book", but not one person being able to supply any proof. Or something like that.

Will be interesting to see how many more people take the bait this time.

Ali "it doesn't say it anywhere, that's the beauty of it" Baba

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Cervus
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quote:
Originally posted by Turner727:
This google search shows it as being in The Simpsons, Ender's Game and Hitchhikers Guide to the galaxy. I didn't see the simpsons episode in question, but I have read the other two books. I knew it sounded familiar.

Well, it wasn't in the books. Click on the link and read the actual post on that site:
quote:
I've purloined a copy of the script. It contains the following dialogue between Arthur Dent and Slartibartfast:

AD: That's wonderful. But what does it do?

SBF: That's the beauty of it. It doesn't do anything!

So, apparently, this dialogue has never existed before (trust me on that one), and it first exists in the release of HHGTTG:TM sometime Christmas, 2005.

It's a time-independent MEME!



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"There is no constitutional right to sleep with endangered reptiles." -- Carl Hiaasen
Won't somebody please think of the adults!

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InfraPurple
The First USA Noel


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:blush: Didn't go beyond the first link, my bad. It does sound familiar to me, and usually after I read a book they tend to blend together. So saying Ender's game and HHGTTG, well, it sounded 'right' to me.

I guess that's the beauty of the quote, it doesn't go anywhere.

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While I wasn't falling down or anything, gravity and I did have an interesting relationship for a short time. - Purple Iguana

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Jason Threadslayer
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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No, no, no, no! Not again!

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All posts foretold by Nostradamus.

Turing test failures: 6

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moonlight
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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Ugh, this drove me nuts the first time around...

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I'm back to lurking.

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Chickee Daizy
Live and Let Madai


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[Confused] I'm stumped, as is everyone else in the world apparently. What immediately came to my mind was Aqua Teen Hunger Force. I can almost picture Shake saying that. But of course, I am probably wrong. I wish I could figure it out...It's making my brain hurt.  -

Chickee "  - " Daizy

ETA: For some reason, Seinfeld keeps coming to my mind, too. It also sounds like something Kramer would say, being the kooky guy that he is. I'm going nuts...

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AliBaba
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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Hmmmmm....should I use my powers of invisibility for good or for evil?

(Edited for clarity)
Chickee, and anyone else - don't let it drive you crazy. Read my post, and Cervus', above.

Ali "Bing!" Baba

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Chickee Daizy
Live and Let Madai


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Oh, I suppose you are right AliBaba, but it still bugs me, because it sounds so familiar. I hate that feeling where something is on the tip of your tongue and you just can't quite seem to remember...it makes me feel mentally challenged.

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Some people are like slinkies...They don't really have a purpose, but they still bring a smile to your face when you push them down the stairs.

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Aquillion
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I am sorry to say that the only thing I could come up with is this (note the quote on the card.) Not a movie, but anyway.
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BrainDamage
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For some reason, I picture William Shatner saying it in one of the Star Trek movies.
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chillas
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quote:
Originally posted by BrainDamage:
For some reason, I picture William Shatner saying it in one of the Star Trek movies.

You're thinking of Star Trek IV. There's an exchange between Kirk and Spock as Kirk is selling some antique reading glasses that had been given to him by McCoy as a birthday gift:

quote:
Spock: Excuse me, Admiral. But weren't those a birthday gift from Dr. McCoy?
Kirk: And they will be again, that's the beauty of it.



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Come on, come on - and the world's a little brighter


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rockland6674
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Q: "Which movie uses this quote?"
A: "That's the beauty of it: There is no movie or TV show with this quote, but everyone will swear they've heard it before! *evil laugh*"

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James G.
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I'm sure a similar line does indeed appear in the Simpsons in the episode with the drinking bird and the baby translator. This was a scene I immediately though of, before finding it turned up in other threads. It may not be the exact quote, but I believe (If a similar quote indeed exists) it was what was triggering my memory.

But the line is fairly 'obvious' and so may very well appeared in multiple places.

ETA: Well I found an MP3 covering the reigion in question and it appears as though I either imagined the quote or it appears outside the bit the MP3 covers.

EETA: From a random blog:
[QUOTE]
To those of you tracing it to The Simpsons, it's half and half:

You can hear Danny DeVito saying it, because he says "that's the beauty of it" on The Simpsons (as Homer's half brother Herbert Powell).

The other half, "What does it do?" "It doesn't do anything" is asked about the big ugly Xt'Tapalapakettle head from Mr. Burns (after Bart donates blood).

"Whatever it does, it's doing it now"[/QUOTE/

Explaining at least why a few people assigned the quote to that particular episode. (Assuming this person is correct with the half quotes.)

Cervus, I'm slightly confused by what is meant by Hitchhikers:TM Christmas 2005. Especialy as that is still a few months away on my calendar. I can only assume they mean TP, as in Tertiary phase, but that would be Summer 04. Interestingly the attempt to assign it to Hitchhikers appears as early as 2003, but this is probably a result of Hitchhikers being one of those things which seems to have lost quotes assigned to it.

I had a sudden temptation to slip this line into anything I ever end up writing. (Despite the fact that everone will believe I've stolen it)

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valandearl19
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It realy sounds to me like something I heard in "The Hudsucker Proxy"

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Pogue Ma-humbug
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Wasn't it said in "The Wizard of Oz" -- right after that munchkin hanged himself?

Pogue

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Let's drink to the causes in your life:
Your family, your friends, the union, your wife.

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Ledfeather
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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The Hudsucker Proxy is the first thing that came to my head too, when he is presenting the Hola hoop to the board.


Led

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faceless007
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I don't even remember if I saw the entire movie or not, but if I remember right, it doesn't make sense that Tim Robbins' character would make that statement about his wonderful new invention. I seem to remember him showing people his new idea (a drawing of a circle), saying it's designed for kids, and acting like its usage is pretty obvious. It's not until the final shot of the film where we find out what the object actually does: It's a frisbee. So knowing that, I don't know why he would say that it doesn't do anything--I think he already has the flying thing in mind when he draws it.
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StewPot
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It does sound like something that would have been said in that movie... but it wasn't.

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One of my favorite philosophical tenets is that people will agree with you only if they already agree with you. You do not change people's minds.
-Frank Zappa

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guruwan2b
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quote:
Originally posted by Introducing, the Pogues:
Wasn't it said in "The Wizard of Oz" -- right after that munchkin hanged himself?

Pogue

You evil, evil man..... [Big Grin]

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LibrarianJen
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I think I may have mentioned this last year when we were discussing it, but I *swear* I can hear Jeff Bridges saying this!!
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tribrats
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I've watched Hudsucker Proxy many times and yes, they use that line in it. Now I'm going to have to find it and watch it again so I can find the exact spot.

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abbubmah
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quote:
Originally posted by tribrats on tour:
I've watched Hudsucker Proxy many times and yes, they use that line in it. Now I'm going to have to find it and watch it again so I can find the exact spot.

BZZZZT! Thank you for playing.

[Big Grin]

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Fundamentally Unfundie since 1975

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Adelaide
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Does Klinger say it to Winchester on M.A.S.H. when he's trying to sell him on the hula hoop idea? I tried googling for scripts and came up with nada. I think I have that episode taped somewhere... hiding in my crawlspace...

Bulcanary mentioning Hawkeye made me think of it.

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WildaBeast
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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Seeing Bach_girl's post about this line in the "Origins of your name, avatar, sig line..." thread (it's her sig) reminded me of this thread.

The line reminds me of an old sci-fi story I read as a kid, probably written in the 1960s. In the story a mechanic, unable to find any other work, takes a job in a factory where everything is controlled by computers. Nothing ever breaks, so all he does at work is sit in front of a computer terminal all day. Frustrated that he is no longer able to utilize his mechanical skills at work, he builds a big, complex machine in his spare time. The machine doesn't actually do anything, it's just a bunch of gears and wheels he put together for fun. But when people see it, they refuse to accept that it does absolutely nothing -- such a big machine must do something. When word of the machine starts to spread everyone thinks he has some important new invention; he just isn't saying what it is yet. The government wants to use it for the military. He keeps trying to explain that it doesn't actually do anything. Hilarity ensues.

So to me that story is the place I remember seeing that line, when he first shows the machine to his friend. The only problem is I don't think that was a particularly well known story, so I don't see how it would have made the line popular. The book is probably still on a shelf in my old room at my parents' house. No I wish I could go get it and look for that story.

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"Unseasonable is an odd word to begin with. It sounds like it's describing something that it's impossible to sprinkle pepper on." -- Nonny

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Cervus
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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Uh oh, Wilda...I think I've read that story, only I can't remember the title or who the author was. It sounds familiar, only I can't place it...just like the quote in question!

You evil, evil man! [Razz]

--------------------
"There is no constitutional right to sleep with endangered reptiles." -- Carl Hiaasen
Won't somebody please think of the adults!

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WildaBeast
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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If you can stand to wait a few months I'll try to look it up the next time I'm visiting my parents. I'm 80% sure I remember what book I read it in and where it is. Heck, it's sort of bothering me, too.

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"Unseasonable is an odd word to begin with. It sounds like it's describing something that it's impossible to sprinkle pepper on." -- Nonny

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Kitsune No Bosetsu
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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So far I've found about 50 other sites who have tried to find this line and claims it isn't in a movie, or the line is wrong and should be "It doesn't do anything, that's the beauty of it."

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It's you and me against the world.... We attack at dawn. -Mandy

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dam9191
Deck the Malls


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Hello:

I've been looking around on MetaCrawler & found this one website where the person has checked into some of the different suggestions.

http://kcor1953beauty.tripod.com/blog/

I wanted to add that I thought Johnny Depp's character said it in the new version of "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory". ;-)

dam9191

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So I can't believe in Room 19."
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Boots - no longer muffin with honey
Deck the Malls


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hahaha, awesome! I remeber this thread from a year ago. I forget how it turned out though.

Anyway, I was almost sure
"What does it do?"
"What does it do It doesn't do anything." Was from a Simpsons episode, I kinda still am, although not that much anymore.

After googling for a few seconds, I found another message board where some people think it's from a Calvin and Hobbes comic strip. I read pretty much every stip a couple of months ago, and I am now 90% sure that the line is in one of those strips...now I just have to find it!

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