Cool Bananas: Definition, Meaning, and Origin

Last Updated on
December 28, 2023

"Cool bananas" is an informal slang phrase expressing excitement, approval, or agreement. It's a playful variant of saying "cool" or "awesome."

In short:

  • "Cool bananas" means that all is well and satisfactory.

What Does "Cool Bananas" Mean?

The phrase "cool bananas" is a casual, cheerful way to express that you're pleased with how things are going. It's the thumbs-up of idioms, signaling everything is controlled and proceeding smoothly.

Here's what you need to know about this breezy expression:

  • It's a positive response, often used when someone agrees to a plan or is happy about an outcome.
  • The phrase can be a standalone response or part of a sentence to convey agreement or satisfaction.
  • It carries a similar meaning to other expressions like "great" or "fantastic," but with a more laid-back, whimsical vibe.

Where Does "Cool Bananas" Come From?

The phrase "cool bananas" likely originated in Australia in the early 1990s, inspired by a TV commercial for an Australian automotive reseller, which used the tagline “Cool Banana Motorama.” It may also have roots in 1970s New Zealand as slang meaning "everything's great." In jazz circles, "bananas" was used to mean excellence, and "cool" emphasized this. The phrase also appears in Jamaican patois, where "bananas" meant foolish or crazy, giving a playful twist to "cool bananas."

10 Examples of "Cool Bananas" in Sentences

This phrase can slip into various types of sentences, adding a splash of fun each time:

  • When I told her we were going to the beach, she said, "Cool bananas!"
  • I finished my homework, and when I told my parents, they said, "Cool bananas."
  • "Let's go to the party at 11?" "Cool bananas, I can't wait."
  • "I got the tickets for the concert!" "Really? Cool bananas!"
  • When I told him we were going to a movie, he said, "Cool bananas."
  • "We finally finished the project on time." "Cool bananas!"
  • "I'll bring you dinner a bit later." "Cool bananas."
  • When I told my manager I was done for the day, he said, "Cool bananas."
  • "The test was moved to next week." "Oh, cool bananas, that news made my day."
  • "Please try to come home on time." "Cool bananas."

Examples of "Cool Bananas" in Pop Culture

The idiom "cool bananas" has been used in various pop culture contexts, often to express a laid-back, positive vibe.

Here are some real-life examples where the phrase has made an appearance:

  • In the Australian children's show "The Wiggles," the phrase "cool bananas" has been used to express enthusiasm and joy, resonating with the show's young audience.
  • "Cool Bananas" is also the title of a popular song by the artist Tell, adding to the phrase's representation in music culture.

Other/Different Ways to Say "Cool Bananas"

While "cool bananas" is a unique expression, there are several other idioms and phrases that convey a similar sense of approval or satisfaction.

Here are some alternatives you might hear:

  • Awesome sauce – another playful expression that means something is excellent or great.
  • Peachy keen – a retro phrase that also means everything is fine or going well.
  • The bee's knees – an old-timey way to say that something is of excellent quality.
  • The cat's pajamas – similar to "the bee's knees," this phrase is used to describe something that's cool or impressive.
  • Right as rain – implies that everything is in good order or working perfectly.
  • It's cool – an expression that conveys approval.
  • Five by five – a radio communications expression that has come to mean everything is okay or good.
  • Fine and dandy – everything is okay, satisfactory.
  • As good as gold – something or someone that is reliable or of good quality.

10 Frequently Asked Questions About "Cool Bananas":

  • What does the idiom "cool bananas" mean?

"Cool bananas" is a phrase used to express that everything is fine, satisfactory, or agreeable. It's often used to show approval or happiness about a situation.

  • Where did the idiom "cool bananas" originate?

The exact origin isn't known, but it's believed to have become popular in the 1960s or 1970s, possibly within surfer or youth cultures in Australia or New Zealand.

  • Is "cool bananas" still used today?

Yes, "cool bananas" is still used, particularly in Australian and New Zealand English, to refer to a relaxed or content state of affairs.

  • Can "cool bananas" be used in formal situations?

Typically, "cool bananas" is reserved for casual or informal contexts due to its playful and laid-back connotation.

  • Are there any variations of the phrase "cool bananas"?

While "cool bananas" itself doesn't have many variations, similar expressions like "awesome sauce" or "peachy keen" can be used to convey a similar sentiment.

  • How can I use "cool bananas" in a sentence?

You can use it to agree with someone or to express that you're happy about something, for example, "You got the tickets? Cool bananas!"

  • Is "cool bananas" used internationally?

While it's understood in many English-speaking countries, its use is more common in Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

  • What is the tone conveyed by "cool bananas"?

The tone is upbeat, positive, and informal. It's often used to inject a bit of cheer into a conversation.

  • Could "cool bananas" be considered slang?

Yes, it's considered a slang phrase due to its informal nature and specific cultural context.

  • What are some synonyms for "cool bananas"?

Synonyms include phrases like "it's all good," "right as rain," and "hunky-dory," among others.

Final Thoughts About "Cool Bananas"

The idiom "cool bananas" is a colorful way to express approval and satisfaction. It's a phrase that encapsulates the relaxed and positive vibes of the cultures it comes from. Here's a quick recap of what "cool bananas" brings to the table:

  • It's a fun, informal way to say that everything is fine or to express happiness.
  • The phrase likely originated in the 1960s or 1970s and is still used today, especially in Australian and New Zealand English.
  • While not typically used in formal contexts, "cool bananas" are perfect for casual conversations where a light-hearted touch is needed.

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