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Here’s what “FUBAR” actually means

After decades of action cinema’s dominance in films like Conan the Barbarian, The Terminator And predator, Arnold Schwarzenegger makes his screenwriting debut in the Netflix original series this week FUBAR.

An eight-episode action comedy by The Sopranos, Law & Order And Prison breakout writer Nick Santora, FUBAR follows a similarly high-octane and conceptual premise to one of Schwarzenegger’s most famous films: True Lies. In this film, Schwarzenegger played a spy who kept his job a secret from his wife and daughter until they became dangerously involved in his latest mission.

In FUBAR, Schwarzenegger plays a spy again, but this time he’s close to retirement – until he learns he’s playing his beloved daughter Top Gun: Maverick‘S Monica Barbaro, is Also A secret agent who hid her dangerously double life of him. In the end, father and daughter are forced to work together to thwart a hostile conspiracy while solving their family problems, and it’s safe to say things get messy along the way…or rather, FUBAR.


What does FUBAR mean?

FUBAR is a military-derived acronym that stands for a situation so damaged or out of control that it’s “messed up beyond recognition,” or alternatively, “messed up beyond repair.”

Accordingly technopediaFUBAR was popularized by American soldiers during World War II. Back then, however, it had the slightly more work-safe meaning of “spoiled beyond repair”. The increasingly widespread use of FUBAR at the time may have been influenced by the German term ‘few’, meaning ‘awful’ and describing a general feeling of deep despair or helplessness.

At Netflix FUBAR, The term is only uttered once — in the final moment of season one, when [Spoiler!] All spies’ secret identities have been compromised and they must escape. Luke then explains that the whole situation is FUBAR.

Headshot by Philip Ellis

Philip Ellis is a UK freelance writer and journalist covering pop culture, relationships and LGBTQ+ issues. His work has been featured in GQ, Teen Vogue, Man Repeller and MTV.

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