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This article is about the wardrobe malfunction. For other uses, see Wedge.
A male receiving a wedgie

A wedgie is the act of forcibly pulling a person's underwear upwards from the back. The act is a school prank or a form of bullying.

Wedgies are commonly featured in popular works, either as a form of low comedy or as a behaviour representative of bullying. In such works, briefs are usually the type of underpants that are worn by the victim.[1][2]


Wedgies, especially when performed on males, can be dangerous, potentially causing testicular or scrotal damage. An incident in 2004 involving a ten-year-old boy required reattachment of a testicle to the scrotum.[3]


A female receiving a regular wedgie

As a prank or form of bullying, there are a number of variants to the normal wedgie. It is impractical to list every variant, as the names and processes can be rather subjective; however, there are a few better-known variants of the wedgie.

  • The Melvin is a variant where the victim's underwear is pulled up from the front, to cause injury, or, at least, severe pain to the victim's genitals.[4] The female variant is sometimes called a Minerva.
  • The Atomic Wedgie entails hoisting the waistband of the receiver's underwear up and over their head. [4][5] This form is the title character's signature prank from The Mask: The Animated Series.
  • The Bra-Connection Wedgie is a wedgie where a girl gets a wedgie and her underwear is attached to her bra. The bra straps connect via the legholes, keeping the wedgie intact.
  • The Hanging Wedgie is a variant in which the victim is hung from his or her underwear, elevated above the ground.[6]


  • On April 6, 2006, Fox News reported on an Albany, New York teacher who was arrested for endangering the welfare of a child by giving the 10-year-old student a wedgie.[7][8]
  • In 2007, eight-year-old second graders Jared and Justin Serovich came up with "wedgie-proof" underwear at the Central Ohio Invention Competition 2007, where their invention got them into the finals.[9]
  • On July 16, 2015, a man was sentenced to 30 years in prison for killing his stepfather with an atomic wedgie.[10]

See also


  1. ^ Wedgie. The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. Retrieved 30 November 2007 via
  2. ^ No More Bullies, School Counselor Resources.
  3. ^ "Emergency operation after school prank - Local stories". Yorkshire Post. 2004-12-02. Retrieved 2012-08-01. 
  4. ^ a b Curran, David (2007-01-04). "Gwyneth And 'The Atomic Wedgie'". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2009-07-07. 
  5. ^ Krysis, B. M. (2004). The Angry Plumber and Other Woefully True Bathroom Calamities. Trafford Publishing. p. 72. ISBN 978-1-4120-2359-7. Retrieved 2009-07-06. 
  6. ^ Stuever, Hank (2002-09-02). "At School, a Most Uncomfortable Subject". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2009-07-07. 
  7. ^ Hume, Brit (2006-04-06). "Charges for Giving a Wedgie". Fox News Channel. 
  8. ^ Greg Tananbaum and Dan Martin (2005). Atomic Wedgies, Wet Willies, and Other Acts of Roguery. Santa Monica Press. ISBN 978-1-59580-000-8. 
  9. ^ "Twins, 8, invent 'wedgie-proof' underpants". MSNBC. 2007-11-02. 
  10. ^ "Man who killed stepdad with "atomic wedgie" gets 30 years in prison". CBS. 2015-07-16.