You'll never have another moment of regretting not coming up with a great comeback with these quotes!
L’esprit de l’escalier or l’esprit d’escalier, literally meaning ‘staircase wit’, is a French term that refers to thinking of the perfect comeback when it’s too late. You’ve definitely experienced this before, and the frustration is unreal!
However, there are a lot of moments from history where famous people were able to come up with witty comebacks that totally rekt their opponent. Here are some of the best.
Leonard Nimoy of Star Trek fame was once asked by a female fan, “Are you aware that you [as Spock] are the source of erotic dream material for ladies around the world?” His reply was “May all your dreams come true!”
Viscountess Nancy Astor shot an insult at Winston Churchill saying, “Winston, if you were my husband, I’d put poison in your tea.” And Churchill shot back with, “If you were my wife, I’d drink it!”
An acquaintance walked past Marc Connelly, a member of the Algonquin Round Table (a celebrated group of New York writers, critics, actors, and wits), and ran a hand over Connelly’s bald head saying, “That feels just as smooth and as nice as my wife’s behind.” Connolly ran his hand over his own head and said, “So it does!”
Kevin Smith remarked that Tim Burton’s Planet of the Apes reminded him of a comic book he had written. Burton replied, “Everyone knows I never read comics.” To which Smith replied, “That explains Batman.”
Katharine declared, “Mr. Barrymore, I am never going to act with you again!” And Barrymore responded, “My dear, you still haven’t.”
Mick Jagger stated that his wrinkles are actually laugh lines. But jazz singer George Melly shot back, “Surely nothing could be that funny!”
Muhammad reportedly refused to fasten his seatbelt and said, “Superman don’t need no seat belt.” The flight attendant then replied, “Superman don’t need no airplane either.”
The young girl asked Noël Coward why the male dog was sniffing a female dog. He responded, “The one in front has suddenly gone blind and the other one has very kindly offered to push him.”
A fan asked Mozart for tips on writing symphonies to which Mozart replied, “Begin with some simple lieder and work your way up to a symphony.” The fan replied, “But Herr Mozart, you were writing symphonies when you were eight.” Mozart shot back, “Yes, but I never asked anybody.”
Radio talk show host Joe Pyne once said to Zappa, “So I guess your long hair makes you a woman.” To which Zappa replied, “So I guess your wooden leg makes you a table.”
Got a great comeback story? Share them with us below!
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