What Does “What’s Up, Doc?” Mean?

What’s, Up Doc Meaning

Definition: What’s going on?

Doc is a way to refer to a person.

Origin of What’s Up, Doc?

This expression gained widespread popularity as a result of the cartoon series Looney Tunes, which began in the 1940s. One of the characters, a rabbit named Bugs Bunny, used this as his catchphrase.

In the series, a hunter named Elmer Fudd tries to shoot the rabbit. However, rather than being scared, the rabbit would nonchalantly ask the hunter what was new.

The creator of the line says it was a common phrase in his hometown in Texas before he popularized it with the cartoons.

Examples of What’s Up, Doc?

definition of whats up doc In the following example, two friends are having lunch with their young children.

Kerry: Wow! Graham looks so big! How tall is he now?

Christine: He’s almost 40 inches now!

Graham: What’s up, Doc?

Kerry: Nothing, Graham. What’s up with you? Christine, how funny! Where did he learn that?

Christine: He really loves watching Looney Tunes, and Bugs Bunny is his favorite character. He’s constantly repeating him, and he loves to say that line.

Kerry: I think it’s cute.

Christine: It is cute, but it does get a little repetitive. At least the show is helping him eat more carrots.

what up doc In this dialogue, two friends are meeting for coffee.

Arlena: Hey! How’s it going?

Nyima: Hey! What’s up, Doc?

Arlena: Not much! I’ve never heard you use that greeting. Are you a big Bugs Bunny fan?

Nyima: No, not really. I just got tired of using the same old greetings over and over again and thought I’d try something different.

More Examples

This excerpt is about a fundraiser with the expression as its name.

  • Nearly 400 people were present at the “What’s Up, Doc?” fundraising event this past November, marking its 20th year at Texas Children’s Hospital. –Houston Chronicle

This excerpt is from a photo caption for an expensive meal featuring carrots. They use the expression for this caption because Bugs Bunny often ate carrots while saying his catchphrase.

  • WHAT’S UP, DOC? This three-carrot main course costs a stunning $18 at the East Village restaurant Northern Spy Food Co., which defends the hefty markup. –New York Post


The phrase what’s up, Doc is a well-known catchphrase from a popular cartoon rabbit who said this while eating carrots.

It has the same meaning as what’s up, but it is less common. People often use this as a reference to the cartoon show, the cartoon rabbit, or even carrots.