The text is from Radiant Vermin (play) What is "cattle prod times a million" referring to? Ollie is planning to ambush and kill some homeless.

Ollie: This is the answer to our prayers. Think cattle prod times a million. Simply plug it into any normal household socket. And before you say –

Jill and Ollie: None of the sockets work.

Ollie: They do in the kitchen. And before you say –

1 Answer 1


“times a million” is an idiom based on exaggeration that means something is much more powerful, effective, etc. (or any other adjective; the precise adjective would be inferred from the object, e.g., a cattle prod). So it exaggerates and claims that it’s a million times better than a cattle prod.

For clarity, “times”, here, means “multiplied by”.

As an aside, another common idiom like this you might hear is to say “cattle prod on steroids”, which is also very common in Britain.

  • 1
    Yes, but the idiomatic construction isn't limited to a million. Think X times ten / a hundred / a thousand / etc. all occur with the same sense. Oct 11, 2020 at 12:01

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