It's One Banana, Michael. What Could It Cost, $10?

It's One Banana, Michael. What Could It Cost, $10?

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Updated Jun 05, 2024 at 04:09PM EDT by Adam.

Added Jun 01, 2024 at 06:21AM EDT by Triplem.

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About

"It's One Banana, Michael. What Could It Cost, 10 Dollars?" is a line said by Lucille Bluth in the series Arrested Development. Online, a screenshot of Lucille saying the line is used as a reaction image and exploitable to mock out-of-touch people and institutions, particularly out-of-touch rich people who mock those who can't afford certain goods.

Origin

Season 1, episode 5 of Arrested Development, titled "Charity Drive," first aired on November 30th, 2003. In one scene, Lucille Bluth berates her son Michael for charging his brother for a dish from the banana stand, and Lucille counters "It's one banana, Michael. What could it cost, $10?" The earliest online presence of this scene is a YouTube video[1] (see below), uploaded on August 7th, 2011, and which was seen more than 1.1 million times.

- Don't you judge me! You're the sefish one. You're the one who charged his own brother for a Bluth Frozen Banana. I mean, its one banana, Michael. What could it cost, ten dollars?
- … You've never actually set foot in a supermarket, have you?

Spread

Over the following years, the quote became popularly used to mock wealthy people for being out of touch with the costs of common needs. It grew particularly popular during the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, on December 17th, 2020, Twitter user @CrappyFumes[3] posted a meme featuring Nancy Pelosi, in mockery of the coronavirus stimulus package. The tweet gained over 18,000 retweets and 125,000 likes in three and a half years (shown below).


I mean it's 9 months of food, rent, & utilities Michael, what could it cost? 600 dollars?

The popularity of the meme during this period led Mel Magazine to publish an article[2] relating the story behind the iconic scene.

The meme saw common use in relation to other stories related to various forms of greed. For example, on July 1st, 2023, Mastodon[4] user Michael Tae Sweeney joked about a proposal that Twitter would limit non-Premium users to 600 posts a day, gaining over 350 boosts and 800 favorites in one year (shown below, left). On September 28th, Twitter user @realsusandixon[5] used it to joke about David Brooks spending $78 on an airport meal, gaining over 15 retweets and 120 likes in nine months (shown below, right).


It's an entire day, Michael, how many posts do you need to read, 600? Susan optimistically @realsusandi....15h I mean, it's one banana at Newark Airport, Michael. What could it cost, $78? ALT ... 3 17 18 113 4,377 ↑

Various Examples


It's one Cookie Bag Michael. What could it cost, ten dollars? FIELD GANE - AMERICA SOLIDARITY WITH WRITERS WRITERS GU OFSTR STOP MAKING WRITERS DO MATH IT'S ONE WRITER OMICHAEL WHAT COULD IT COST? TEN DOLLARS? WR LIND ANYMOR U.S. hospitals making up the bill for your ER visit It's one advil, Michael. What could it cost, 60 dollars? the government solving our problems: Omean, it's the cost of living in 2020 What could it cost? $1200 I mean it's one Baby Michael. What could it cost? 1000 embryos? IT'S ONE WARHAMMER, MICHAEL. WHAT COULD IT COST, TEN DOLLARS? yam.co

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