What is the first cartoon or movie to use fake swearing? Like the popular cartoon Spongebob Squarepants' dolphin noises. I can only recall that one occurrence. Is there any cartoon in any era with fake swearing? This doesn't mean the speech bubble ones.

  • Why limit this to cartoons? Live action movies do this as well.
    – cde
    Aug 8, 2016 at 12:02
  • fixed it. i added movie into the question Aug 9, 2016 at 3:15
  • Old Tom & Jerry cartoons used mumbled, unintelligible swearing. Aug 9, 2016 at 13:15

1 Answer 1


I will nervously submit Angels in the Outfield (1951) shown here at about 20 seconds.

No, I can't really back that up. There's about 20 years of sound movies prior to this, and I haven't seen all of them. You could say from 1934 to 1951, since profanity wasn't banned before 1934, but the gimmick might have been used prior to 1934.

A lot of "Popeye" cartoons have that kind of feel, with Popeye's muttering having the same sort of "swearing under your breath" feel, but I've always been able to parse out clean words from the ones I've seen, so they're neither garbled nor swearing.

  • i do remember popeye and remember Angels In The Outfield (not the 1951 version) having fake swearing in them. This Question is marked as Answered! Aug 13, 2016 at 18:50
  • Great! If I come across an earlier example, I'll be sure to update!
    – moviegique
    Aug 13, 2016 at 22:08

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