That means running gag: ongoing joke
The English term “running gag” means something like “running joke” and is a rhetorical means of expression. A “running gag” is a figure and context-bound joke that is repeated or retrieved in a modified form.
Usually a “running gag” is associated with comedy, especially slapstick or situation comedy, where a recurring element in the story can be used in a particularly humorous way. Among friends, one might also speak of an “insider” or an “inside joke”, something that only the initiated can laugh about. Who doesn’t like to be on the knowing side?
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Examples of running gag
“Running gags” are often used in series as well as in films. Starting with classics like “Dinner for One”, where the butler James keeps stumbling over the tiger’s head, to the countless recurring jokes of the “Simpsons”, there are innumerable brilliant examples. On cringy
Here are a few well-known examples:
- HIMYM: Barney’s love of suits, the bro code, the legendary slap bet
- Scrubs: JD’s love for Appletinis, the caretaker’s name
- Big Bang Theory: Sheldon’s regular seat on the sofa, “Bazinga!”, Howard-is-not-a-real-scientist
- Brooklyn Nine-Nine: Halloween Heist, Terry loves yogurt, title-of-your-sex-tape
- Navy CIS: the team of coffee junkies, Gibbs rules, the loving pat on the back of the head