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What Do You Think Wackus Bonkus? or Naughty Wackus Bonkus refers to a scene from the BBC comedy series Horrible Histories where a crazy Caligula, played by Simon Farnaby, talks to a bloody mallet he just used to kill numerous people, asking the mallet what it thinks of an investigator's accusations that he's crazy, saying "kill him" in a different voice supposed to be the mallet's, then responding "naughty wackus bonkus" as he goes off to kill the investigator. The scene became the subject of lip-dub skits on TikTok in late September and October 2021.



On June 2nd, 2011, season three episode four[1] of the BBC's Horrible Histories aired, a comedy sketch series that revolves around figures and moments from history. The episode includes a skit called "The case of Caligula & the mystery assassins" where a '70s-style "historical investigator" D.I. Bones is called to Caligula's palace to investigate a crime. He assumes the crime is murder due to the large number of bodies strewn around the room, but Caligula keeps admitting to the murders as Bones investigates them, claiming there's another crime afoot. Bones then walks off as Caligula lifts a bloody mallet, the murder weapon, to his face and says to it, "What do you think Wackus Bonkus?" He then changes his voice and says "kill him" as if the mallet said it. Caligula responds, "Oh, naughty Wackus Bonkus" and goes off to murder Bones (shown below).


On August 28th, 2021, TikToker[2] @ev1em0 posted the isolated clip of Caligula talking to the hammer as an original sound[3] titled "naughty wackus bonkus," gaining over 10.1 million views in a month. In late September, the sound became popularized in lip-dub skits and videos where TikTokers depict themselves making a tough decision with themselves using their hand to dub "wackus bonkus'" voice. For example, on September 29th, TikTokers @sunflowerminded and @juliafox038711 posted videos like this, gaining over 3.5 million and 2.5 million views respectively in two weeks (shown below, left and right).

The trend continued to grow over the course of October. On October 3rd, TikToker @marquiehibler posted a skit about struggling not to overcharge an old high school bully at their hair salon, gaining over 10.1 million views in a week (shown below, left). On October 9th, TikToker @gracie.herrick, a Hooters employee, posted a video complaining about Hooters' restaurants' new shorts essentially being underwear, gaining over 14.5 million views in five days (shown below, right). By October 14th, the original sound "naughty wackus bonkus" inspired over 210,000 videos on TikTok.

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External References

[1] Horrible Histories โ€“ The case of Caligula and the mystery assassins

[2] TikTok โ€“ ev1em0

[3] TikTok โ€“ naughty wackus bonkus

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