"Make My Day"

Shapiro, Fred fred.shapiro at YALE.EDU
Fri Jan 9 14:18:09 UTC 2009

The OED's first use for the Eastwoodian "make my day" is, not surprisingly, from Eastwood's 1983 film _Sudden Impact_.  But Internet Movie Database says the following: "Although Clint Eastwood made the phrase "Go ahead, make my day" famous, it was originally used a year earlier by actor Gary Swanson in the movie Vice Squad (1982). Swanson, who played a Hollywood vice cop, said the line, "Go ahead scumbag, make my day," to actor Wings Hauser, who played a pimp, during a bust."

Can anyone confirm whether IMDB is accurate about the usage in _Vice Squad_?  And does anyone know of any other pre-_Sudden Impact_ usages?

Fred Shapiro

Fred R. Shapiro                                            Editor
Associate Librarian for Collections and        YALE BOOK OF QUOTATIONS
  Access and Lecturer in Legal Research     Yale University Press
Yale Law School                                           ISBN 0300107986
e-mail: fred.shapiro at yale.edu

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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