jump the shark love


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To undergo a storyline development which heralds a fundamental and generally disappointing change in direction.
  • v. To experience a decline in quality, appeal, popularity, etc.


From "Hollywood (Part 3)", a 1977 episode of the TV series Happy Days, in which the character Fonzie jumped over a shark on waterskis, after which (supposedly) the show bore no similarity to its original form. (Wiktionary)


Sorry, no example sentences found.

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.


Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • I agree with Emily about the descent into commonplaceness. It's typified by trying to hold on to a theme that once resonated but has since run its course. On Twitter, @willf suggested "jump the shark is the point where it is obvious that something has become irreparably bad."

    August 5, 2011

  • In the TV/storyline sense, I always thought "jump the shark" had a "Hail Mary" connotation as well, a desperate cry for attention that leads to a rapid deterioration.

    But then colloquially, it might just be used as "over the hill" or reaching the tipping point from an upswing in hipness to a descent into commonplaceness, e.g. "'Cougars' have really jumped the shark now that they are featured in Ocean's Thirteen."

    August 5, 2011