- 1987’s RoboCop was a satire of the corporate world and legal structure of the 1980s, a trend RoboCop 2 and 3 continued.
- The 2014 RoboCop remake lacked the satire and humor of the original movies in the franchise.
- The original RoboCop movie humorously criticizes the attitudes of business people during the 1980s.
In many ways, RoboCop is director Paul Verhoeven’s quintessential sci-fi masterpiece, and much of the director’s satire is found in RoboCop quotes throughout the franchise. Released in 1987, the first RoboCop movie seems like a straightforward sci-fi action film, but in reality, it is a smart, witty piece of filmmaking that blends social satire with ultra-violence and comedic one-liners. The movie follows a police officer gunned down and left for dead who ends up reincarnated in the body of a robotic police official whose only directive is to uphold the law. The main themes include corporate power and law enforcement overstepping its authority.
The first RoboCop will filled with quotes that stemmed from it being a satire of social and political issues. The RoboCop franchise continued with two sequels and a reboot, though Verhoeven didn’t return. Irvin Kershner directed the second movie, with comic book writer Frank Miller providing the script, and Night of the Creeps director Fred Dekker directed the third, also with Miller writing. In 2014, a reboot arrived re-telling the original movie’s story. Despite being an action sci-fi staple, the funniest RoboCop quotes prove the franchise is also full of comedic moments and a suprising amount of wit.
20 “No, It’s Nothing Personal. Although, I Don’t Like You As A Person.”
Alex Murphy, RoboCop (2014)
- Release Date
- February 12, 2014
- Jose Padilha
- Joel Kinnaman, Michael Keaton, Gary Oldman, Abbie Cornish, Samuel L. Jackson
- 2h 1m
The biggest complaint about the 2014 remake of RoboCop was that it didn’t have as much satire and humor as the original movies in the franchise. It was set up more as a dramatic action movie with Alex Murphy (Joel Kinnaman) not wanting to operate as a robotic police officer, but being forced to in order to save his city. However, there were a few moments where some dry humor slipped in. This included a moment where Alex was talking to John Lake (Daniel Kash), a corrupt Detroit police officer Alex was closing in on. When John asks if Alex has something on them, or if it is personal, Alex delivers this great line with all the dryness of the original 1987 version of the character.
19 “Thank You. I Hope You Are Insured.”
RoboCop, RoboCop 3 (1993)
RoboCop 3 kept the franchise momentum moving with corporate powers attempting to utilize the technology behind RoboCop for their own ends. In the third movie, a man named Paul McDaggett (John Castle) runs a heavily armed private security force called the Urban Rehabilitators, and he kills RoboCop’s partner Lewis (Nancy Allen). However, RoboCop (Alex Burke) can’t fight back because Paul works for OCP, protecting him with the Fourth Directive.
RoboCop sets out to stop him after having the Fourth Directive deleted from his programming. He learns McDaggett is at a hotel and when he asks the clerk if he is there, and gets an affirmative, then delivers this funny RoboCop quote as he sets off to find the murderous OCP employee.
18 “Thank You For Not Smoking”
RoboCop, RoboCop 2 (1990)
One of the things that stands out when it comes to RoboCop is that he wants to stop all criminal activity, no matter how minimal it is. Thankfully, unlike The Punisher in Marvel Comics, he does not use deadly force when dealing with common criminals. By the second movie, he better understood the line between dangerous crimes and basic ones that he could stop with non-lethal measures. However, there was one very funny moment in RoboCop 2 where he fired his gun in the direction of a man smoking in a non-smoking area. He wasn’t aiming at him, but it got the man’s attention, and RoboCop’s quote at this moment was dry and hilarious.
17 “It’s The Thought That Counts.”
RoboCop, RoboCop 2 (1990)
In the second RoboCop movie, there is a battle for the technology that created RoboCop to begin with. As a result, people start to work against each other, and after an ambush causes RoboCop’s dismantling, the plot leans more heavily into its sci-fi elements. After his reconstruction, Dr. Juliette Faxx reprograms him with a softer directive, so he becomes less effective. This, she believes, will help her prove she needs to run the program with her own RoboCops.
When RoboCop is out with his partner, Anne Lewis, she notices something is wrong when RoboCop says her hair looks lovely and the moon is wonderful, despite it being daytime. He then delivers this hilarious RoboCop quote to explain his compliments and possibly even guilt Lewis for questioning the gesture.
16 “I’m Having… Trouble.”
RoboCop, RoboCop 2 (1990)
When RoboCop was mostly malfunctioning thanks to re-programming in RoboCop 2, he struggled with even the most basic tasks. When RoboCop and Lewis are chasing down some criminals, Lewis is forced to gun one of them down. However, what happened next was darkly funny in a gruesome way. RoboCop walks up to the dead criminal and begins to read him his Miranda Rights. Lewis tries to stop him, by reminding him that the criminal is dead. However, RoboCop keeps on reading him his rights, and Lewis once again says he is reading the rights to a corpse. Finally, RoboCop stops and admits something is wrong.
15 “Somebody Wanna’ Call A Go**amn Paramedic?”
Bob Morton, RoboCop (1987)
Scheming corporate bad guy Dick Jones (Ronny Cox) had a real problem with delivering a great product. He was far more concerned with marketing a dud than delivering a winner. Nowhere was this more apparent than when he debuted the ED-209. Its monstrous, intimidating size was enough to frighten any criminal, but it masked a series of design flaws that made it ultimately as lethal to the innocent as the guilty. A software problem prevented it from distinguishing between civilians and criminals, and it opened fire on a corporate official. Standing over his decimated corpse, Bob Morton (Miguel Ferrer) yelled out this RoboCop quote in the mistaken belief that an ambulance could possibly make a difference.
14 “You Call This A GLITCH?”
The Old Man, RoboCop (1987)
The 1980s was a strange era for corporate America. The pendulum had swung from the creation of high-quality American goods to cost-cutting measures that diminished standards. This was something the original 1987 RoboCop heavily satirized, as seen in this hilarious quote from the Old Man (Daniel O’Herlihy). After ED-209 pummeled an innocent board executive to death with high-powered rounds, Dick Jones went to the Old Man and assured him that it was “just a glitch.” Unsurprisingly, the Old Man didn’t share the same sentiment. It’s a macabre and satirical way of criticizing the attitudes of many business people who fall into the trap of corporatism, which was a major problem in the 1980s.
13 “I’d Buy That For A Dollar!”
Bixby Snyder, RoboCop (1987)
The humor of this funny RoboCop quote isn’t in the words themselves, but because they get a lot of laughs from the characters, as if it’s part of the popular culture of the world in which the film takes place. This quote from the original 1987 RoboCop seems to resonate as deeply iconic with the RoboCop franchise, and appears elsewhere too. The fact that it’s uttered several times throughout the film by the sleaziest guy in the movie is just for extra effect. It’s another clever way that Verhoeven makes fun of the culture of the time period.
12 “What Kind Of Car Do You Want?”
Lt. Hedgecock, RoboCop (1987)
“Something With Reclining Leather Seats That Goes Really Fast And Gets Really S***** Gas Mileage!”
Nothing in RoboCop should be taken particularly seriously, including scenes depicting hostage situations. Verhoeven injects satire into each frame and backs it up with a witty, sarcastic script. This line occurs when an average guy named Miller takes a bunch of hostages. As the police try to keep Miller distracted while RoboCop infiltrates the building, he starts yelling out demands. One of them is the 6000 SUX, a fictional muscle car from the film that epitomizes all the gross excesses of the 1980s, right down to high-polluting vehicles.
11 “I’m What You Call A Repeat Offender! I Repeat, I Will Offend Again!”
Prisoner, RoboCop (1987)
Sometimes, criminals take legal terms too literally, as evidenced by this RoboCop quote. It occurs right before the first big reveal of RoboCop at the police precinct when Sergeant Reed is dealing with a suspect brought in for public intoxication. While the police go through his file, he starts getting belligerently humorous. Instead of cursing out the Sergeant and acting violently, he slurs his way through this quote, which is a bizarre take on the concept of a repeat offender. There’s a certain charm to his honesty, however, and it’s enough to raise a laugh.
10 “Tastes Like Baby Food!”
Johnson, RoboCop (1987)
RoboCop might be one of the best cyborgs in cinematic history, but he’s still dependent on a cocktail of vitamins and nutrients to sustain his organic parts, which is where the quirky “baby food” scene comes into play. After OCP sets up a station for RoboCop in the police precinct, they begin prepping him for his role as the new cleanup officer in Detroit. The scientists in charge of the project describe his digestive system and the paste they use to supplement his needs. Johnson grabs a cup of the food and tries it out, remarking to Bob Morton that it tastes like baby food. Repulsed, Morton pats him on the chest and replies “Knock yourself out!“
9 “You Probably Don’t Think I’m A Very Nice Guy, Do Ya?”
Clarence Boddicker, RoboCop (1987)
Clarence Boddicker remains one of the evilest and most unpleasant villains ever to have graced the silver screen, thanks to a stellar performance by Kurtwood Smith. The character is devoid of merit and redemption, making him a frightening nemesis not just for RoboCop, but for the audience as well. Boddicker was beyond ruthless when it came to his criminality. There was no line he wouldn’t cross; no crime too extreme enough to raise his heart rate even by a single point. His cruelty is encapsulated with perfection, thanks to this quote which he utters right before murdering Alex Murphy.
8 “That’s It, Buster! No More Military Aid!”
Commercial Dad, RoboCop (1987)
Paul Verhoeven didn’t just poke fun at American corporatism in the 1980s, but the world’s obsession with nuclear war at the time too. As the 1980s drew to a close, the Cold War began slipping into irrelevancy, but the threat of a nuclear exchange was plausible. At the same time, an incredible sense of optimism and joy seeped into everything from music to big-screen Hollywood movies, which proved to be a confusing juxtaposition.
During the 1980s, board games were viewed as a great way for the family to get together and bond. Verhoeven added a fictional game called Nukem which hilariously brought the paranoia of the Cold War to the tabletop. This game encouraged players to “get them before they get you.“
7 “I Had A Guaranteed Military Sale With ED-209! Renovation Program! Spare Parts For 25 Years! Who Cares If It Worked Or Not?”
Dick Jones, RoboCop (1987)
Director Paul Verhoeven is a master filmmaker with a slew of incredible moves to his credit, and he routinely uses satire as a substitute for in-the-face political browbeating. This brilliance is demonstrated in RoboCop when Dick Jones attacks Bob Morton for capitalizing on his ED-209 failure. Really, it was Dick’s own fault for pushing a corporate con job. When Morton one-upped Jones with the RoboCop initiative, it sent him into a fit of anger and jealousy. After all, Jones was number two at OCP, and he didn’t take kindly to Morton’s rise. This funny RoboCop quote is an example of how simultaneously clever and short-sighted Dick Jones really was.
6 “Excuse Me, I Have To Go. Somewhere There Is A Crime Happening.”
RoboCop, RoboCop (1987)
This is one of the most sterile quotes of the entire 1987 RoboCop, and also one of the funniest. It might be a clever jab at the “work comes first” attitude of 1980s corporate America, or it may simply be so dry and full of raw conviction that it comes off as unintentionally funny. Whatever the case, it works. RoboCop is so enveloped in his work as a police officer that he doesn’t know what to do with himself in whatever counts for his spare time. If he’s not replenishing his energy purely by necessity, he’s out on the streets killing criminals.
5 “It’s Back. Big Is Back, Because Bigger Is Better! 6000 SUX – An American Tradition!”
Commercial Voice-Over, RoboCop (1987)
Consumerist societies have always been interested in big products. Throughout the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s, big cars were a sign of prestige and dominance on the road, and this was reflected in movies with a bevy of amazing cars that have gone down in cinematic history. Verhoeven poked a bit of fun at this in the original 1987 RoboCop by juxtaposing the population’s love of big V8 gas guzzlers with the declining quality of the American automobile. The 6000 SUX moniker isn’t exactly subtle, but it’s worth a good laugh all the same.
4 “Come Quietly, Or There Will Be…Trouble!”
RoboCop, RoboCop (1987)
Many RoboCop fans love the film for its social satire and funny one-liners, and each actor brought something special to the table. Peter Weller delivered the role of RoboCop with a robotic, yet human performance that felt totally natural, given the circumstances of his death and rebirth. This quote is one of the funniest and most often imitated by fans. It showcases the pre-programmed mentality of RoboCop, mixed with the humanity of Alex Murphy, making it a one-liner for audiences to root for. It was a perfect example of how there is still a human inside the robot.
3 “They’ll Fix You. They Fix Everything.”
RoboCop, RoboCop (1987)
By the time 1987’s RoboCop reaches the climax of its third act, the titular character goes from human to cyborg, and something closer to human all over again. The final battle with Boddicker and his men in the abandoned industrial factory is a chance for RoboCop to take off his visor, show his face, and become Alex Murphy all over again. After stabbing Boddicker through the neck with his data spike, RoboCop and an injured Lewis call out for each other. The latter cries out “Murphy, I’m a mess!” Murphy replies with this funny quote that feels both ironic and sarcastic given OCP’s immoral actions that came before.
2 “You Are Illegally Parked On Private Property! You Have Twenty Seconds To Move Your Vehicle!”
ED-209, RoboCop (1987)
OCP took the concept of urban pacification a little too far when it green-lit the production of the ED-209. This lumbering beast had little in the way of foresight when it came to dishing out punishment for perceived crimes. It was, in essence, one gigantic tool of oppression to scare residents into submission. As such, it wasn’t entirely surprising that it readied its weapons systems to fire when RoboCop rolled up on OCP’s front door with his car. Threatening to open fire on someone for illegally parking a vehicle is so over-the-top hilarious that it made RoboCop’s quotes look tame in comparison.
1 “Dick, You’re FIRED!”
The Old Man, RoboCop (1987)
RoboCop’s hidden fourth directive meant that he could not act against any member of the OCP, even if it meant upholding the law. This was a fail-safe designed by Dick Jones to prevent the cyborg from acting against the interests of the company. This wasn’t surprising, since OCP’s lucrative city contracts essentially meant they owned the police. When RoboCop brought video evidence of Dick Jones’ murder confession to the OCP board, he retaliated by taking the Old Man hostage. RoboCop revealed directive four prevented him from acting against Jones, which prompted the Old Man to yell this double-entendre before Jones was shot, effectively ending Jones’ employment and his life.