Chicken Legs

The insulting nickname of Marcy Rhodes (Amanda Bearse), a bank employee and feminist next-door neighbor to the Bundy family on the sitcom MARRIED…WITH CHILDREN/FOX/1987-97.


When Al Bundy (Ed O’Neill), a frustrated shoe salesman, wants to drive Marcy from his home, he mocks her skinny stature by using quips relating to a chicken, often calling her “Chicken Legs.” Once Al said “Look what’s crossed the road. I can’t be a chicken, it hasn’t got breasts…just nuggets.”

During an argument, Marcy’s husband Steve (David Garrison) told his wife “You know why you have chicken legs? It’s because your mother eats all those eggs.”

Al Bundy calls Marcy a “chicken” for the first time on episode No. 113 “Johnny Be Gone.” The dialog follows: Marcy [looking round]: “Al, do you see a fish eye anywhere round here?” Al [looking at her wearing just a towel]: “No, but I see a chicken leg.”

On episode No. 232 “Kiss of the Coffee Woman,” Al puts together a Top Ten List on Marcy of suggestions to approve her appearance. It read:

  • 10. Wear traditional Islamic garb covering all but the eyes.
  • 9. Feather removing electrolysis.
  • 8. Ski mask.
  • 7. Sew up holes in ski mask.
  • 6. Hire attractive woman to stand in front of you at all times.
  • 5. Beak job.
  • 4. Put paper bag over ski mask.
  • 3. Shave head, tattoo Cindy Crawford’s face on back of head, and learn to walk backwards.
  • 2. Poke out eyes of every man on Earth.
  • 1. Get President to make every day Halloween.

Note: On the sitcom I LOVE LUCY/CBS/1951-57 Lucy Ricardo (Lucille Ball) was called “Bird Legs” in grade school.


Born in Philadelphia, Jerome Alphonse Holst worked 30 years as a librarian. He has since retired and lives in Greensboro, North Carolina. Mr. Holst is also the author of the children’s books “Norman the Troll,” "Norman the Troll and the Haunted House," and "Gretchen and the Gremlins." In addition, he penned the fantasy novel “The Adventures of Glinda Gale,” a retelling of “The Wizard of Oz" and the reference text “The Encyclopedia of Movie and TV Insults.” .

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Posted in Insulting Nicknames, Sitcoms, Uncategorized

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