What’s the difference between gunge and slime?

So I was talking with a couple of friends and a thought came to mind:

What is the actual difference between gunge and slime?

For me, the difference is purely semantics. It depends on what it’s actually used for. Gunge is “nasty” and slime is “nice”. Even the very names convey this to me somewhat – while slime doesn’t exactly convey something most people would want to be covered with, it doesn’t sound quite as icky as gunge.

As I said before, gunge is the “nasty” one. It’s what gets used as a forfeit, a penalty, a dare or as a method of humiliation. It shows up in TV shows (particularly British ones) where the losers get covered in it and the winners avoid it… mostly. It’s what shows up in shows like GYOB and NHP.

Slime is “nice” by contrast. It’s what gets thrown around liberally, just for the fun of it. It’s not for someone who lost some games or a vote necessarily – it’s inclusive. Sure it’s icky, maybe even disgusting, but it’s more fun than gunge. It’s what Nickelodeon uses 99% of the time.

When it’s used as an obstacle or game feature, it’s dependant on the context of the game really. If it’s a light-hearted show it’s slime, if it’s got a more serious then it’s gunge.

So, what’s your take on it? There’s no real right or wrong answer here, just interpretations.

About VanillaXSlime

So I'm a WAM author (Suzi's Slop Drop, The Kayotics, The A-Z of Gunge II, Goo Your Own Way, miscellaneous other stuff), the administrator of https://tellygunge.wordpress.com, a fan of metal, punk and gothic music, an occasional cosplayer and bassist. Twitter: https://twitter.com/VanillaXSlime ECG: http://www.ecgunge.net/forums/index.php?showuser=10391 UMD: http://umd.net/profile/vanillaxslime
This entry was posted in Discussions. Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to What’s the difference between gunge and slime?

  1. Sploosh! says:

    I always had it down as just a language thing. brits call it gunge and yanks call it slime but theres not much differences between the two words, although i think you’re right about the different attitudes. basil brush’s slop shop is one of the few occasions of a british show gunging someone for fun that I can think of whilst slime time live did sometimes slime the losers of a game (although i’m not american so i’m just piecing it together from what I’ve seen online) and its about the same in australia too. just check the superb dunking from the slimefest from earlier this year to see them treat it as a bit of fun that people wanna go in for. whenever the kids choice awards roll around theres always some celebs that say they would love to get slimed and maybe it’s all just a publicity thing but we’ve never really had too many people that have come and said they wanted to be gunge. probably something to do with a stiff upper lip, as a nation we’re less inclined to playing in the mud and having a giggle whilst the americans just dive right in

    might explain why other countries see us as being repressed as fu*k though


    • VanillaXSlime says:

      And yet I’m pretty sure that between here and the various other WAM sites I’ve been at, there’s a lot more British WAMmers (or at least, more “out” British WAMmers). Weird how things work out, huh?

      One other thing I’m interested in knowing is how other countries generally utilise gunge/slime, or whatever they call it there. Sure, I’ve written about people of various nationalities other than British and American but that doesn’t mean I’m that clued in on how they view the goo.


  2. TellyGunge says:

    The Atlantic?

    I’ll come up with a more lengthy and considered answer this evening…


  3. yuck53 says:

    Apparently Big Dave knows but he’s not telling.

    I once divided mess into four categories based on delivery system/application and visual impression. They, I think, were gunge, gunk, goo, slime. At the time slime was the one that had a translucent colour and was applied by an overhead or surrounding delivery system if I remember right. Gunge was the more opaque version of the same.

    Certainly gunge does give a more gruesome impression but slime is very famously used in Ghostbusters and not in the “fun” way it’s being described here. I think slime was taken to be mucus or mud based, the point being you knew what it was. Gunge, I think, means you really don’t know what it is, it’s just a mixture of unidentified messes and usually blocks pipes.

    Slime, nevertheless, gives an impression of being a thinner, more elastic substance than gunge.

    How the US ended up using one word and we ended up using another in unclear. Perhaps we just wanted to be original.


  4. TellyGunge says:

    Ok here’s my lengthier answer…

    (By the way, what was the conversation with your friends? I’m intrigued.)

    Some of this has already been said but here are ways they can be distinguished.

    Etymology – To a certain extent, you might as well ask what’s the difference between a caretaker and a janitor, or what’s the difference between petrol and gasoline. It’s just a case of two different countries (plus Canada), two different words. Tbh, that’s why I decided early on not to have separate gunge and slime categories on the blog, but to file everything under gunge.

    However, there are some differences.

    Culture and context – This has always been said, so I’ll just say it again quickly. Gunge is intended to punish and humiliate; slime is fun to play around in. Of course, there are contradictions to this on either side. For example, Fun House in the UK was about playing around in the gunge (although really that show was imported from America anyway), while YCDTOTV had a definite streak of humiliation running through it. But on the whole, this rule is true.

    Substance – Slime is like the Model T Ford of WAM substances: it’s available in any colour (or color) as long as it’s green. In terms of consistency, slime is either lumpy (apple sauce) or gelatinous and stringy (methylcellulose). By contrast, gunge is available in a whole spectrum of colours (often more than one at a time) and it tends to be smooth and thick (natrosol). Or at least in the good old days it did, before ITV decided that coloured water could pass as ‘gunge’…


  5. BucketOfGoop says:

    A mixture of what’s already been said for me. In general context gunge is a term used by Brits, and slime by Americans of course; personally I see slime as thinner stuff (as used on Nick for example) and gunge as pretty much everything else.


  6. Sploosh! says:

    “Tbh, that’s why I decided early on not to have separate gunge and slime categories on the blog, but to file everything under gunge”

    I’ve not seen many sites that do split them, but one that I do remember was freewam, where the split was along the lines that if it was brightly coloured and a bit thinner, then it was slime but if it was thicker (or some sort of food mess – custard or porridge or similar) then it was called gunge. ministry of mayhem seemed to screw it up a bit and the clips from that show were thrown into whatever category but when the place was more active the split seemed to be that slime was the green nick-type stuff (even if it wasn’t on nick) and gunge was an umbrella term for anything messy that wasn’t slime/pies/mud.

    I have seen other people on sites like wamchat talking this way as if gunge is a catch-all term and slime is a specific off-shoot of it.

    do people agree with what tellygunge said about slime having to be green? I know that nick have used other colours (like when they covered the singer pink with the colour pink) but does that mean that the green stuff is slime and any other colour is gunge?


↓ This is where you write something ↓

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s