Where's the beef?


Also found in: Acronyms, Wikipedia.

Where's the beef?

1. What is the problem? This meaning uses "beef" in the sense of a conflict, complaint, grudge, feud, etc. So, he borrowed your sweater and then he returned it. Where's the beef?
2. Where is the substance or the important part (of something)? This usage originated with a popular catchphrase introduced in a 1984 commercial for the Wendy's fast food chain in which a woman humorously questioned the purported lack of meat in competitors' hamburgers. The phrase was further popularized that year when US presidential candidate Walter Mondale used it to question the substance of the policy proposals of his primary opponent, Gary Hart. The writing is good, but where's the beef? You need evidence to back up your claims. The program looks good on paper, but how do we know it will really work? Has any research been done? Where's the beef?

Where's the beef?

Inf. Where is the substance?; Where is the important content? That's really clever and appealing, but where's the beef? Where's the beef? There's no substance in this proposal.

where's the beef?

1. Also, what's the beef? What is the source of a complaint, as in Where's the beef? No one was hurt in the accident. This usage employs beef in the sense of a "complaint" or "grudge," also appearing in the phrase have no beef with, meaning "have no quarrel with." [Slang; late 1800s]
2. Where is the content or substance, as in That was a very articulate speech, but where's the beef? This usage was originally the slogan for a television commercial for a hamburger chain attacking the poor quality of rival chains. (1984) The phrase was almost immediately transferred to other kinds of substance, especially in politics.

where's the beef?

used to complain that something is too insubstantial. informal

where's the beef?

Where is the substance to this issue? This expression began life as an advertising slogan for Wendy’s, the third-largest American hamburger chain. In a 1984 television commercial, three elderly women are given a small hamburger on a huge bun, a competitor’s product. They admire the bun, but one of them, a retired manicurist named Clara Peller, asks, “Where’s the beef?” The slogan caught on, and Walter Mondale, seeking the Democratic nomination for president, used it to attack his opponents’ stands and policies. The phrase echoes another, much older slang expression, what’s the beef?, meaning what’s the complaint. The use of the noun beef for gripe or complaint dates from the late 1800s. George V. Higgins used it in Deke Hunter (1976), “I agree with you . . . so what’s the beef?”
References in periodicals archive ?
Meanwhile, many NCR readers who also have read Quest for the Living God wonder, "Where's the beef?" Will we ever really know what the bishops' committee meant when it nebulously criticized Johnson's book?
3 SR ...'Where's the beef?' (TC) 4 Bourjois ...'Two out of three' (MW) 6 Kaya Skin Clinic ...'A brave first' (MW) striking, but where's the ...
I keep thinking about the "Where's the Beef?" lady, Madge hawking her dish soap, and Bartles and Jaymes sitting on their rockers selling wine coolers.
"WHERE'S the beef?" This phrase, used years ago by presidential hopeful Walter Mondale in questioning the substance of an opponent's policies, is what springs to mind when I'm asked about the government's 'growth agenda'.
The advertisement had an elderly lady looking at a small hamburger on a large bun and asking "where's the beef?" Most people thought that was a humorous way of comparing one product with another.
"Where's the beef?" was an effective satiric one-liner that emphasized how advertizing proclamations made by Wendy's real-life competitors could be all fluff and no substance.
But there was a "where's the beef?" aspect to examination of the Israel-Palestine conundrum.
One is tempted to ask: "Where's the beef?" Where is the controversial work that has long been lingering in dark studios waiting patiently for the day where it can hang against a white gallery wall?
An editorial in the Taipei-based Economic Daily News said the response to the first, cautious round of investment openings in June 2009 was ''Where's the beef?'' and that Wednesday's initiative is a ''positive development'' in closing the investment imbalance across the Taiwan Strait.
DO YOU REMEMBER THAT 1984 advertising slogan for Wendy's, "Where's the beef?" And how it morphed into a catchphrase used by everyone from actors in TV comedy shows to a Presidential candidate?
Many thanks for hitting the nail on the head in Vision 2019: Where's the beef? (May 2010, p.
A powerful, client-focused marketing strategy will never leave the prospect wondering, as Clara Peller did in that iconic Wendy's commercial, "Where's the beef?"
Wendy's "Where's the Beef?." commercial is a mantra to remember when creating the product--and the ad itself.
For me, the big question in all of this is, Where's the beef? I'm sold on the concept.