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what's the big idea?

INFORMAL
This page is about the conversational phrase what's the big idea?

Meaning

You can say this if someone's doing something, or has done something, that you think is wrong or bad.

For example

  • When I caught my kids playing computer games, I said, "Hey! What's the big idea? Why aren't you doing your homework?"

  • "What's the big idea, telling everyone about it? It was supposed to be a secret!"

Quick Quiz

Their teacher said, "What's the big idea?" when he

a. saw them studying

b. caught them cheating

c. finished his lesson

Contributor: Matt Errey