A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from March 08, 2009
“Is it soup yet?”

"Is it soup yet?” is a line from a late 1960s-1970s television commercial for Lipton soup mixes. A child would ask the question, and a mother would first respond “Not yet! and then “It’s soup!” The commercial intended to give the message that soups that took a little longer to prepare (not simply soup in a can, such as Campbell’s) had better ingredients.

The line “Is it soup yet?” entered the vernacular to mean “Is it ready yet?”


Urban Dictionary
Is it soup yet?
It means “Are you finished?” or “Is it time?”

Comes from a 1970’s Lipton instant soup commercial, notable on several levels. First off, it was a slam against Campbell’s which was merely condensed. Lipton did Campbell’s one better and removed itself even further from the real stuff, by removing ALL the water and powdering the soup. Only when re-hydrated with boiling water, was it again soup.

So kid’s in commercials would ask, “Is it soup yet?”

AND BACK THEN, THIS WAS SUPPOSED TO BE A GOOD THING!!

The fact that it was even more prefab than Campbell’s was a selling point!

Wife: I’ll be ready to go in a minute?
Husband (a few minutes later): Is it soup yet? 

by Dr. Heywood R. Floyd Mar 30, 2008

About Michael Earl
Earl began his professional career at age five acting in a Curad bandaid TV commercial. Two years later he was tapped to be the original “Is It Soup Yet?” kid for Lipton. The spot ran for three years, the first in a series of wildly popular commercials that over the next decade became one of the most successful ad campaigns in history.

Google Books
25 May 1970, New York magazine, pg. 74:
“Is it soup yet?”—Andy Warhol
(Made-up quotation for the magazine contest—ed.)

Google Books
Contemporary English; change and variation
Compiled by David L. Shores
Philadelphia, PA: J. B. Lippincott Company
1972
Pg. 84:
This difference in the choice of one word in a single construction, affects the understanding of a considerable number of sentences in ordinary speech. For example, a television advertisement for a brand of powdered soup contained the line Is it soup yet? This was intended to mean something like Has it become soup yet? and was no doubt so understood by the standard English speaking audience, except possibly in parts of the South.

Google Books
Is It Soup Yet?:
A Cookbook for Soup Lovers

By Dot Vartan, Shelly Reeves Smith, Among Friends
Illustrated by Shelly Reeves Smith, Among Friends
Published by Andrews McMeel Publishing
2004

MST3K: The Discussion Board
Re: Esoteric References VI
« Reply #5 on Jul 6, 2007, 3:08pm »
Q: One of Joel’s favorite riffs was, “Is it soup yet?” I know that’s become a common phrase in the programming world, but what is the original source?
A: It was a Lipton Soup commercial. The approach was that their soup didn’t come out of a can, it was in a packet and you added water. The slogan was something like “It’s not soup till you make it soup.” And the kids would come running in asking “Is it soup yet?” (Phantom Engineer)

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityFood/Drink • (1) Comments • Sunday, March 08, 2009 • Permalink


I wrote the Lipton’s commercial “Is it soup yet” for Lipton’s packet of soup ingredients that were NEVER in water before. Adding hot water made it soup for the first time “in your pit, not ours”

Posted by sandi butchkiss  on  02/09  at  02:34 PM

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