Honestly, I don't know why I never thought of this until just now and maybe I'm just really blind but I couldn't help but suddenly realize the similarities between Arnold's Schwarzenegger's two iconic catchphrases from the Terminator series of films.

The Terminator (1984) - "I'll be back."

Terminator 2: Judgement Day (1991) - "Hasta la vista, baby".

I realize the significance of the second phrase to the movie and the relationship between young John Connor and the protector Terminator (as can be seen in this scene), but my question is more of an out of universe one.

The phrase "hasta la vista" translated to English means basically "see you later" and is very similar to "I'll be back". So I'm wondering if this similarity was intentional and meant as a nod to the original film's famous catchphrase.

  • 3
    The second Terminator film also uses the phrase "I'll be back", so I doubt "Hasta La Vista" was put into the film as a nod to the quote from the first one
    – Jimmery
    Commented Oct 25, 2016 at 10:19
  • @Jimmery "I'll be back" is actually used in one form or another in all of the Schwarzenegger Terminator films (as illustrated by the video I linked to), but I don't see how that should mean "Hasta la vista, baby" wasn't meant to be a nod to it.
    – sanpaco
    Commented Oct 25, 2016 at 23:08
  • @sanpaco Not just his Terminator films, but all of his films, actually. That was his catch phrase and he generally tried to work it into every move he appeared in. Although I'm pretty sure the original Terminator was the first movie he used it in (and ad libbed it into the scene, IIRC.)
    – Steve-O
    Commented Nov 19, 2016 at 3:11
  • @Steve-O It wasn't an ad-lib. Check the link in my answer: movies.stackexchange.com/a/108511/13595 .
    – BCdotWEB
    Commented Mar 31, 2020 at 23:20

4 Answers 4


Co-writer co-writer William Wisher revealed its origins in a new featurette that was made to promote the 3D re-release of Terminator 2: Judgement Day:

Wisher reveals that "Hasta La Vista, baby" was just something that he and director James Cameron "used to say to each other when we were talking on the telephone, as we were hanging up... neither one of us ever had any idea that that line would become an iconic piece of dialogue."

(Note that you can view the featurette at the link.)


Cameron Mitchell in the 1955 movie "the tall man" says goodbye to Clark Gable "Hasta la vista, hermano" in Spanish that a Spaniard like me has to say this is a bit strange, and it is just one example of the little recognition of the Spanish culture in the culture of the United States, because what few know is that the first cowboys in America were Spanish, among other things because the first cows and the first horses that arrived in America were brought by the Spanish

  • 2
    So are you saying that the phrase was supposed to be a nod to The Tall Man instead? You might want to point out a little more in which way this tries to answer the question beyond just providing unrelated commentary on the phrase "hasta la vista" and the history of Spanish culture in the US.
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Commented Jul 27, 2022 at 12:33
  • As it’s currently written, your answer is unclear. Please edit to add additional details that will help others understand how this addresses the question asked. You can find more information on how to write good answers in the help center. Commented Jul 27, 2022 at 16:49

Sometimes things rhyme. I don't mean that in the "I'm a poet, and I didn't know it," vein, rather, in the "History doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme," whether it was said by Mark Twain or Joseph Anthony Wittreich. You can discover this rhythm if you listen to lots of music, see lots of art. I bet you and I use the same words, phrases, mannerisms in many of the same situations.

In the Rosary (doesn't matter if you are a believer or not) the similarities among some mysteries did not appear to me until I learned them in German, and only when I used "insertions" where the mysteries are announced in the "Hail Mary," not at the beginning of the decade. I had learned this is English, Spanish, and Latin, but only when I learned it in German did I see it.

Pattern recognition is a big part of life. Sometimes the pattern is obvious, sometimes it's hidden, and sometimes it's not there at all, but try telling your brain that. All this to say, no, I don't think you're blind. I think it was done in a flat, monotone which made them similar. Oh, and "Hasta la vista" is literally "Until the view," or more sensibly "Until we see each other again." (Thank God I didn't go into actual "references," where something actually is a nod to something else, often literary.)

  • 1
    Hasta la vista is an idiom. Given that, all of your analysis is moot. Commented Mar 31, 2020 at 23:54

John teaches this Terminator this phrase. He does for fun or wants the Terminator to be more human. He forms an emotional bond with this Terminator, coming to regard it as a father figure.

While interacting with the Connors as they work to try to prevent Judgment Day, this Terminator is taught how to speak in slang-like terms, such as "Hasta la vista, baby", developing into an almost fatherlike role for John Connor, with Sarah (Hamilton) reflecting that the Terminator is the first male figure John has ever had in his life who can be guaranteed to always be there for him. At the end of the film, he orders Sarah to lower him into a molten metal vat in order to destroy the CPU, though John wanted him to stay with them, the Terminator recognizing that he has to be destroyed to ensure that Skynet cannot be recreated in the future using his technology

Terminator (character)

"Hasta la vista baby" becomes 'Sayonara, baby' in some Spanish dubs.

  • 9
    It doesn't seem like the OP is looking for the in-universe origin of the phrase, though, but rather for proof that the filmmakers intentionally included it as a tribute to I'll Be Back.
    – Walt
    Commented Oct 25, 2016 at 11:03

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