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Gee, Officer Krupke

"Gee, Officer Krupke" is a song from the musical West Side Story. Stephen Sondheim wrote the lyrics and Leonard Bernstein composed the music.


"Gee, Officer Krupke" is a humorous song from West Side Story.[1] In the original stage version, the song appears in the musical's second act. The song is sung by members of the street gang the Jets, who taunt the policeman character Officer Krupke by singing about the societal forces that led them to join a gang. In the movie "Gee Officer Krupke" and "Cool" have been switched around. In the movie Riff sings "Gee officer Krupke" prior to the rumble starting in an effort to calm the very eager Jets down with some humor.

Following a theme used throughout the musical, the song begins with a tritone on the word "Dear," in this case held longer to signify its importance.[2][3] Lyrically, the song features a series of seven line verses, each filled with puns and wordplay. Each verse culminates with an interjection ("Goodness gracious", "Leaping lizards"), followed by the final line of the verse.

The last line of the song is "Gee, Officer Krupke – Krup you!" The lyricist Stephen Sondheim originally wanted to break a then-existing Broadway taboo by ending the song with "Gee, Officer Krupke – Fuck You", but Columbia Records, who owned the soundtrack rights, would not allow it. Sondheim changed the line to "Krup you" and now believes it is his best lyric in the musical.[4][5]