The savage art of the comeback is something that we should all take the time and dedication to master. There are very few things in life as satisfying as completely and utterly decimating someone with your wit, your snappiness, and your banter. And if you throw some good old-fashioned logic and common sense into the mix? Whew, you’re a legend.

The place that celebrates these “well-constructed put-downs, comebacks, and counter-arguments” is the legendary ‘Murdered By Words’ subreddit. Boasting a whopping 2.5 million members, r/MurderedByWords shares the best comebacks that we all wish we came up with ourselves. And, well, during the actual arguments, not days later while we’re shampooing our hair in the shower.

One of the moderators helping manage the vast r/MurderedByWords community answered some of my questions about the community. "The way we see it, a murder should (but doesn't always have to) be more than a quick response or retort. The best murders are well-constructed, thought-out responses that leave the opening argument completely without any ability to reply. In other words, their point has been totally demolished," the mod explained to Bored Panda.

"Now, obviously there's more than one way to murder with words, and sometimes a quick rapier thrust or stab to the heart (a short, swift reply) can be just as deadly as a drawn-out murder, and you'll frequently see both types in this sub," they added. Scroll down for the moderator's insights about how they and their colleagues tackle the challenges that come with managing such a large online community.

Check out the best online verbal put-downs, upvote the ones that impressed you the most, and be sure to give r/MurderedByWords a follow if you’re a fan of their stuff. When you’re done with this article, you’ll find some more inspiration for your future epic comebacks by checking out our previous features of the subreddit here, here, and here. Somebody call the police and the coroner because these ‘word-murders’ are out of control.

#1

Red Shirts Everywhere...

Red Shirts Everywhere...

Historical-Tax-2010 Report

Raven Sheridan
Community Member
2 months ago

God I love George Takei!

Abhinc
Community Member
2 months ago

his twitter account is a national treasure !!

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Vicky Z
Community Member
2 months ago

people that complain about masks don't even know what oppression means

Vermillion Ace #443
Community Member
2 months ago

My safety and the safety of others matter more than a bunch of whiners complain about masks, which is why I will still wear one until we are actually safe again.

Susan Green
Community Member
2 months ago

I do too.

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maswartz
Community Member
2 months ago

The people who call masks oppression would break under true oppression.

WolfyDragon_82
Community Member
2 months ago

I don’t understand why people don’t wear masks.Do they want to pass the pandemic and kill more people/themselves?

Eric Law
Community Member
2 months ago

Because they have the mentality of a 6-year-old and react badly when told to do anything, even if it's clear as day it's the right thing to do.

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Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
2 months ago

The shade is real

Melanie Wittmier-Steffler
Community Member
2 months ago

Right on George T😍

tw 72
Community Member
2 months ago

He has a very valid point.

Agamemnon Padar
Community Member
2 months ago

Bingo

InfectedVoice
Community Member
2 months ago

Yes George, I wish I could high five you and buy you 20 beers.

Elizabeth
Community Member
2 months ago

Love HIM!

Linda HS
Community Member
2 months ago

Been there, done that! Agree 1000000%

Chucky Cheezburger
Community Member
2 months ago

OH MY!!!!!

kjorn
Community Member
2 months ago

yeah. most people today didn't live what is like oppression, living in fear of war.

RadiatorAnkleSpider
Community Member
2 months ago

Americans can be so obliviously entitled.

Kevin Wilcoxon
Community Member
2 months ago

Such whiners these so-called patriots are.

Bad Alchemy
Community Member
2 months ago

Thank you, Mr. Takei!

Trond Øien
Community Member
2 months ago

Boss!

Joanie
Community Member
2 months ago

Infinity upvote

OhForSmegSake
Community Member
2 months ago

Uncle George ftw

YoyoSthlm
Community Member
2 months ago

GEORGE!!! <3

Giles Gallie
Community Member
2 months ago

[Pauline] Bravo Georgie.

Mike Rodrick
Community Member
2 months ago

AWESOME!!

Ginny Swart
Community Member
2 months ago

well said!

Norah Reilly
Community Member
2 months ago

Damn! This man is so cool.

Geri Taran
Community Member
2 months ago

George, you never fail me.

Robert Miller
Community Member
2 months ago

Uncle George is one blunt motherf####er !

Colleen Stadnick
Community Member
2 months ago

OH MY!

Lisa Chambers
Community Member
2 months ago

Well, like I practice with most of what whiny George says, you dont have to listen.

Geri Taran
Community Member
2 months ago

He always seems to be right on top of things.

Diana Hockley
Community Member
2 months ago

TOO RIGHT.

lakitha tolbert
Community Member
2 months ago

Yeah, there's quite a few lynched Black people that would love to have words with them...except they can't because they're dead! I'm pretty sure a lot of Mexican immigrants would like to have some words with them too, along with several extinct Indigenous tribes....

H.L.Lewis
Community Member
2 months ago

So true, and so shameful. My grandparents didn't get locked up. She was full German, and he was full Italian. Both countries were enemies during WWII. But look a little different, and boom, gotta lock you away.

BakuDeku Shipper
Community Member
2 months ago

He made the book They Called Us Enemy(graphic)

Aiden Cross
Community Member
2 months ago

This comment has been deleted.

Art Hipk
Community Member
2 months ago

Now he trusts the government? smh

Joe Blow
Community Member
2 months ago

Uh-huh. I said PAPER.

Chris Longski
Community Member
2 months ago

Many Nissei (Japanese-Americans) were given furloughs to attend universities and work on large farms, where they also resided. Those who chose to join the military were allowed to do so. The All-Nissei 442nd Regimental Combat Team was the most decorated unit of the war. It was wrong to round them up. But the government overreacted to the Niihau Island Incident at Pearl Harbor and wanted to give the appearance of taking some sort of positive action. Real positive, eh ?

Mazer
Community Member
2 months ago

One in the same catalysts. (Basically this is the same story different people different times different catalysts) it all boils down to this: One sect of people letting their fear victimize innocent people while they spout rhetoric

Mark Johansen
Community Member
2 months ago

Not sure of the reasoning here. "I was the victim of a big infringement on my freedom so therefore we should just ignore small infringements on freedom"? I think an obvious argument would be that if the government gets away with small infringements, they'll be encouraged to try bigger infringements. What, are you going to wait until they are shooting people in the streets before you protest?

Mary Jane Love
Community Member
2 months ago

Are you seriously comparing wearing a face masks to being gunned down?

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Rod Egret
Community Member
2 months ago

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Did George go to Costco to spend his $25? (or 20, I can't remember the exact amount...)

John Baker
Community Member
2 months ago

Jeff Washington, does it hurt to be that stupid?

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Jeff Washington
Community Member
2 months ago

This comment is hidden. Click here to view.

Beautiful thing about America is you can leave. I guess its hear people whine or live in camps.

Lanie
Community Member
2 months ago

What?

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#2

I Think This Belongs Here Too

I Think This Belongs Here Too

Mortwight Report

Michelle M
Community Member
2 months ago

Thank you , Hammad.

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#3

Women Aren't People, Apparently

Women Aren't People, Apparently

beerbellybegone Report

Samantha Lomb
Community Member
2 months ago

Good for him for correcting the reporter

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The moderator representing r/MurderedByWords shared with me that they have a very thorough vetting system in place for new mods. "We manage the community by being a tight-knit group of moderators who are all carefully vetted before being given the position, to ensure the stability of the subreddit and that good content gets through," they said. However, it's not just the mods who decide whether or not a comeback can be classified as a 'murder.' That honor is also given to the community members themselves.

"Overall, we believe in letting the subreddit determine what is or isn't a murder, and try to step in or remove posts only when the rules are broken or we see the same post for the gazillionth time," the mod explained.

According to the moderator, the community has its own challenges, just like any other large subreddit. "Every single post will always have someone who says, 'Not a murder,' 'This sub is dying/dead,' 'Mods suck,' etc. That comes with the territory of any subreddit, from smallest to largest," they told Bored Panda that these sorts of comments are completely unavoidable, no matter what the community might be. However, a bigger issue is... politics.

#4

Yes, The Answer Is Yes

Yes, The Answer Is Yes

beerbellybegone Report

Hannah Edwards
Community Member
2 months ago

Solid burn

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#5

Who Doesn't Love Irony?

Who Doesn't Love Irony?

HfUfH Report

Raven Sheridan
Community Member
2 months ago

Boom! Mic drop. 🎤

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#6

Far Too Many People See The Answer To This As Being "Yes"

Far Too Many People See The Answer To This As Being "Yes"

beerbellybegone Report

Michelle M
Community Member
2 months ago

Should this even be debated? There's seriously no hope for humanity

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"Another challenge that came up was when we decided before the US Presidential Elections to ban politics from the sub (there is a sticky at the top of the subreddit outlining what is/isn't allowed). Somehow, we managed to have both sides of the political spectrum pissed off at us for that one. Democrats complaining we had caved to the Republicans who kept getting 'owned,' and Republicans complaining because this was one big left-wing [echo chamber] and now they couldn't even respond with their own posts. We then made the ban permanent, but we still have to remove plenty of posts which fit the criteria for the no-politics rule."

But at the core of it all are practical challenges like finding ways to keep the subreddit growing and full of fresh content that will keep redditors happy. "We're lucky in that we frequently create posts that reach the front page and receive tens of thousands of upvotes (many have even passed the 100k upvote mark), which in turn helps draw attention to the sub, which creates more content, etc."

#7

The Media Makes It To Be A Feel Good Story Over A Dystopian Nightmare

The Media Makes It To Be A Feel Good Story Over A Dystopian Nightmare

plurrrb Report

Michelle M
Community Member
2 months ago

And go-fund me accounts are now the people's saviour.

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#8

You’re An Asstrovert

You’re An Asstrovert

Andy20788 Report

Michelle M
Community Member
2 months ago

Asstrovert. Now lives in my personal dictionary.

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#9

Let’s All Make A Pledge

Let’s All Make A Pledge

SilentCitadel Report

Lav Oravaf
Community Member
2 months ago

epic

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Nearly two years ago, I had a friendly chat with redditor Xor50, who’d been one of the moderators helping run r/MurderedByWords. They told me a bit about the community that has been running since December 2016, the type of content the subreddit features (and how it differs from similar subreddits like r/clevercomebacks), and how to give your put-down more substance.

“A ‘real murder’ in terms of this subreddit would be [this]: A murder should be a response to something or someone that totally, for lack of a better word, destroys them. They are, of course, subjective, and should be more or less based on fact,” Xor50 told Bored Panda previously.

#10

Don't B Confused

Don't B Confused

saigalsaksham Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
2 months ago

A phone is essential for accessing a lot of info.

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#11

More C-19 Experts..

More C-19 Experts..

maize_wings Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
2 months ago

*passes the aloe for the 3rd degree burn*

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#12

Am I So Out Of Touch? No, It's The Children Who Are Wrong

Am I So Out Of Touch? No, It's The Children Who Are Wrong

beerbellybegone Report

Helen Haley
Community Member
2 months ago

All kinds of yes to the reply.

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“What is the difference between a ‘murder’ and ‘burn’ anyway? The mod team and even the MBW community has struggled for over a year to try and define the difference. It’s quite subjective and nearly an ‘I know it when I see it!’ situation, however, there are some generalities,” the redditor explained that there have been debates about the details of what constitutes a ‘murder.’

“Murders tend to be longer. It’s nearly impossible to ‘murder’ someone inside of a tweet. It’s just not long enough. You can burn them pretty good yes but a ‘murder’ is far more complete,” they said.

“Basically, anything that you would think is a witticism, one-liner, snappy comeback, or hot take is going to be a burn. Those may be a better fit for /r/clevercomebacks. Murders tend to be long-form, taking a minute or several to read, and thoroughly deconstruct an argument and/or the person making it.”

#13

Columbus Day

Columbus Day

66baph0met Report

Vermillion Ace #443
Community Member
2 months ago

🤣 That reply has some zing to it, anyone know where I can find that spcie?

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#14

Murdered By Wit

Murdered By Wit

Vp8703 Report

Vasana Phong
Community Member
2 months ago

Burn... wait til you land though

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#15

I Like The Second Guy’s Energy

I Like The Second Guy’s Energy

dreamycinnamonroll Report

QueenMiri
Community Member
2 months ago

This!

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Xor50 added that your personal passion for a topic can help inspire you to find a clever way to put down someone’s bad arguments. “Think about a topic you’re really passionate about and imagine you’re talking to an idiot who just doesn’t get it. That’s how I imagine it,” they said.

The art of the comeback isn’t out of reach for us, no matter how epic and unreachable some of these slap-backs and roasts might seem. 

#16

Yeah, That'll Work

Yeah, That'll Work

beerbellybegone Report

Angela B
Community Member
2 months ago

BURN!

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#17

Classic Karen

Classic Karen

I_Luv_Transphobes Report

Angela B
Community Member
2 months ago

Such a good response, that I went and made popcorn and sat in my comfy chair.

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#18

That’s Got To Hurt

That’s Got To Hurt

Professional-Park225 Report

Hannah Edwards
Community Member
2 months ago

Hahahahha

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British comedy writer and stand-up comedian Ariane Sherine explained to me during an earlier interview what the most important parts of a comeback are. “I think the most important thing with comebacks is speed. Even if the joke isn't a total zinger, people will be impressed by your quickfire response," she told Bored Panda.

According to Ariane, most stand-up comics actually have a “repertoire of comebacks” that they rely on while on the stage. This way, they can be prepared for hecklers and (at least some) unexpected situations. There’s a lot of prep that goes into being a good comedian!

“We're not all as fast and talented as it seems! But if we're doing stand-up, our own routines will be original—it's just heckle putdowns that might not be," she said.

#19

How Dare We Give You The Correct Amount Of Changes

How Dare We Give You The Correct Amount Of Changes

Couchmaster007 Report

Michelle M
Community Member
2 months ago (edited)

One cent would probably build them a house.

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#20

Bit Of A Stretch

Bit Of A Stretch

beerbellybegone Report

Michelle M
Community Member
2 months ago

What's with people and body hair? If you like body hair, good for you. If you don't, also good for you. No need to body shame someone for something that occurs naturally. It's like insulting someone for having legs. I'm looking at you, female beauty standards

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#21

Seriously What Is Wrong With You

Seriously What Is Wrong With You

coredweller1785 Report

Helen Haley
Community Member
2 months ago

I usually don't agree with ministers, but yeah, I agree here.

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Ariane revealed to Bored Panda that comedy professionals build up emotional resilience with time and experience.

“Heckle putdowns are generally shared among comics so there's no code of honor when it comes to using them (but you mustn't nick original stand-up material!),” Ariane told me where we can find some inspiration for clever comebacks.

#22

Good Luck To The Women In Your Future

Good Luck To The Women In Your Future

MaxQ50 Report

Loretta
Community Member
2 months ago

Dear men who consider this a good advice: I agree, please stay the f**k away from us.

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#23

Entitled Karen Getting Stabbed By Words

Entitled Karen Getting Stabbed By Words

JustHereForTheCh1cks Report

Sum Guy
Community Member
2 months ago

People think they have the right to people because they see them on TV

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#24

Get Wrecked...

Get Wrecked...

aehfaz3 Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
2 months ago

*mic drop*

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The comedy writer also pointed out that comebacks can either be spontaneous or more planned out (if you’ve got the time), depending on the actual comic. 

"It [the comeback] needs to be very fast, well-timed, and take people by surprise as well as being clever, witty, and immediately understandable,” she said, adding that it’s relatively rare in her experience to have spontaneous eruptions of genius all the time. “That's relatively rare in my experience. I'm sure many other comics are more natural than I am!"

#25

Research Before You Sprouts Anything On Social Media

Research Before You Sprouts Anything On Social Media

ztaker Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
2 months ago

Angela Stanton King knows ZERO about Islamic art.

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#26

Better Check Those Facts

Better Check Those Facts

nexerxe Report

Helen Haley
Community Member
2 months ago

Damn. Even threw in the dad and a handy.

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#27

Handle With Care

Handle With Care

PlacidlyClarify51 Report

Michelle M
Community Member
2 months ago

'As a man, the only emotion you should show is forest hack-saw domination', said, a conservative.

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#28

Why Go Out Of Your Way To Be An As**ole?

Why Go Out Of Your Way To Be An As**ole?

beerbellybegone Report

similarly
Community Member
2 months ago

I admit, I have a pretty good life ... but I've suffered chronic depression since I was a kid. There's no logic to depression.

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#29

This Doubles As A Til About The Spanish Anthem

This Doubles As A Til About The Spanish Anthem

throwawayblueline Report

Sasy
Community Member
2 months ago

Learn something everyday.

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#30

Once Wasn't Enough, He Came Back For More

Once Wasn't Enough, He Came Back For More

beerbellybegone Report

Abhinc
Community Member
2 months ago

and here is another proof that fact checking is the best way to avoid ignorance and racism !!! do some research before pretending you are "thinking" and "making a point" !!!

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#31

Rip Sportsball Fan

Rip Sportsball Fan

KosmicTom , twitter.com Report

Abhinc
Community Member
2 months ago

yeah sure !! why would people get involved in a problem they don't have to go through to show support and try to make the world a better place for everybody ?? oh man ... stfu Rocky

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#32

God vs. Humanity

God vs. Humanity

nin4nin Report

Sum Guy
Community Member
2 months ago

Not just that, his first 2 people were cancelled for eating a fruit he made

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#33

Trying To Gatekeep Conversations

Trying To Gatekeep Conversations

Blazing_Ken Report

Chrissie Mörbe
Community Member
2 months ago

What the actual f*ck is the original poster thinking? This must be one of the stupidest things I have ever read.

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#34

I've Had A 32" TV For Longer Than I'd Like To Admit

I've Had A 32" TV For Longer Than I'd Like To Admit

beerbellybegone Report

Sanne H.
Community Member
2 months ago

There is a difference between “old rich” and “new rich” here. Old rich (families that are wealthy for many generations) don’t usually show off.

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#35

Oh, No! Anything But That!

Oh, No! Anything But That!

beerbellybegone Report

UncleRussian
Community Member
2 months ago

US heath insurance is a scam... And textbooks are a scam... And minimum wage is a scam... Basically everything is a scam

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#36

The Ol' Switcheroo

The Ol' Switcheroo

beerbellybegone Report

Ancsuri
Community Member
2 months ago

I still dont get it, why some people think that vaccination is evil, and but mumbo-jumbo things offered on the internet will work to cure cancer.

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#37

Who Ever Will Fight A Wolf ?

Who Ever Will Fight A Wolf ?

MaxQ50 Report

Hannah Edwards
Community Member
2 months ago

This is hilarious

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#38

But How Will They Make Money If They Can't Take Advantage Of People?!??

But How Will They Make Money If They Can't Take Advantage Of People?!??

catrinadaimonlee Report

Grumble O'Pug
Community Member
2 months ago

Boycotting Uber is easy.

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#39

What Are Crab Cakes?

What Are Crab Cakes?

BRENNEJM Report

NsG
Community Member
2 months ago

"anyone who isn't within walking distance of a school shooting"...

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#40

Doctor Of Reading?

Doctor Of Reading?

ITriedLightningTendr Report

Basil Ignatov
Community Member
2 months ago

Sounds like the symptoms of covid...so people without vaccination tend to get covid symptoms ... Who'd ave guessed?

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#41

I Don’t Really Know If This Counts But..

I Don’t Really Know If This Counts But..

Andy20788 Report

UncleRussian
Community Member
2 months ago

1) why would you be this pretentious in the first place 2) why would you be so pretentious on a god damn memes page...

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#42

Just So We’re Clear

Just So We’re Clear

DaFunkJunkie Report

UncleRussian
Community Member
2 months ago

Shrek is love, Shrek is life don't know what to tell ya man

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#43

It's Almost As If

It's Almost As If

Gonadalchait351 Report

Abhinc
Community Member
2 months ago

Billionaire CEOs of American companies with the lowest wages saw an average salary increase of 29% in 2020, while their workers saw a 2% decrease ... so now let's speak about Dan Price !!! a tech entrepreneur that decided some few years ago from now on he would be slashing his own $1.1 million pay package to help fund a minimum “living wage” of $70,000 for all his workers. this is the way to go

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#44

You Can't Justify Her Actions No Matter What

You Can't Justify Her Actions No Matter What

OkSurprise7755 , twitter.com Report

Truth Monster
Community Member
2 months ago

He was trying to create a new line of skin care products...to sell in baskets....

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#45

I Once Knew A Peacock

I Once Knew A Peacock

AlreadyShrugging Report

A B C
Community Member
2 months ago

What an avaricious arsehole blue is.

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Note: this post originally had 119 images. It’s been shortened to the top 45 images based on user votes.

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