Simpsons: "Bombardment" not "Dodgeball." Is "dodgeball" a trademark or something?

On yesterday’s Simpsons episode the new gym teacher is a masochistic drill seargant type who loves to abuse the kids by playing “Bombardment” – a game that any fool can instantly see is nothing but dodgeball. It made me wonder why the writers went through all the fuss of coming up with a new name.

Is the name “dodgeball” copyrighted or trademarked such that you need someone’s permission to use it?

A few times in elementary school I had to play “Bombardment”. This game sounds very much like the way Dodgeball has been described recently. We also played Dodgeball, but for us that was a much milder game. I’m not sure what the difference was, unless it was that for Dodgeball, we used those big red playground balls that don’t hurt much when they hit you. For Bombardment we used volleyballs, and they did hurt.

The Google ads below mention a National Dodgeball League. The “American Dodgeball Association Of America” has come to fruition, apparently.

At my elementary school:

dodgeball = two/three balls.
bombardment = all the balls.

Anyway, the Simpsons’ writers didn’t invent it. It’s been around forever.

When I was in middle school, we played “bombardment” not “dodgeball.” It is the same game: Wiki - Dodgeball.

Hunh… well whutduhyuhknow? Never heard of Bombardment. Must be a regional thing.

Thanks all.

We called it Battle Ball.

Well, whatever you call it, last night’s game was extremely one sided. Seems to me that gym teacher has anger issues. I was waiting for Nelson to pick up a ball and throw it back, but that would have spoiled the Bart/ice ball angle, I guess

I played both Bombardment and Dodgeball in middle school. Dodgeball involved a group of people in the middle of a circle, with the rest of the class in a circle throwing one (or more) balls at the people in the center. If you were hit you joined the circle. The last player remaining was the winner.

Bombardment required two roughly even teams. Each team was placed on a side of a room, and at the start a number of balls were positioned along the center line. If you hit another team’s player with a ball, they were out, if the would-be target caught the ball, the thrower was out and a player from the catcher’s team was back in. If a target deflected an incoming ball with a held ball, nothing happened, and if a thrower held on to a ball for too long, usually five seconds, that player was out. If a player crossed the center line, that player was out. The object was to eliminate all the players from the opposing team.

This is what we played and the teacher insisted on calling Bombardment, in spite of his spittle inducing speech impediment, while most all us kids called it Dodgeball. I’m guessing it’s either regional or generational. If I had to wgaer a guess, I’d say the term Bombardment predates Dodgeball.

We played Bombardment in middle school, but not like this, exactly. It’s like you say, however, you leave out the bowling pins. No really, I’m being serious. Besides trying to hit the kids on the other team, each side had a row of bowling pins they were supposed to protect. The game only ended when 1. all the pins were down 2. there was no one left on the other team to throw the ball at. A couple of hits on google refer to it as “Pin Bombardment” but the gym teachers never put pin into the name. Whatever you call it, it was one of the only fun things we ever did in gym.

Our definitions agreed with Cleophus’s.
I grew up in the 60’s - 70’s in South St. Louis County, MO and Dodgeball was played by little kids in a circle. Bombardment was played on a “short” basketball court with two teams split by a center line.

Our high school coach had a mean streak and had a few equipment and rule changes. One of the balls was called the peanut and was slightly larger than a softball. An athletic person could put a lot of heat into a throw and it would cause a welt if it hit bare skin. He had another rule (designed to speed up the end of the game) that when your team was down to less than 5 players you could cross over into the other court up to the basketball foul line. Some teams used to strategize and actually talk timid players into getting out so that the remaining players could attack into the opposing court.

Bah. You’re all pansies. Soft red dodgeballs, volleyballs. Why, back in my day we used to play brandy. With tennis balls. Which some particularly devious kids’d then wet so they were heavier and stung more when they hit. :smiley:

I also played Bombardment and Dodgeball as two separate games. Dodgeball could be the circle version, or you could have everyone but one person up against a wall. The person who was “it” tried to throw the ball, hit them, and get them out.

Bombardment, which we played more often, involved teams. The gym was split down the middle, each side got half. When you had the ball (usually more than one ball in play) you tried to hit one of the other team’s players to get them out. If they caught the ball on the fly, you were out. Here’s where my version differs from what was described before. The people who were out went to the “jail” at the back of the opposite team’s territory. If they could get a ball w/o leaving the jail, they could free themselves by getting a membe of the opposite team out. So you could face bombardment from the enemy on both sides.

As the smallest girl in coed gym classes combining 2 grades, I hated both of these games. At least with dodgeball, once you were out you could enjoy some peace and quiet for a while.

Were there… bible questions involved?

Sadistic, actually. Sadists enjoy causing pain, masochists enjoy receiving it.

In my vaguest of recollections I think we used to actually call the game “Trench”.

At my school, it was called “murderball.”

I was very confused last year when a documentary with that title about Paralympic athletes came out. (Turns out it’s not about the intramural sports activity of our yoot, but wheelchair rugger.)

In our school it was called Wallball.

Nah. But I chucked the Vulgate of St. Jerome at the opposite team once.

70s and 80s kid here and the game we played split down the middle was definitely dodgeball. Never heard of bombardment until last night’s Simpson’s ep.

The “cool” version of dodgeball was “Doctor Dodgeball” where one player on each team wore a pinney (do people wear pinneys anywhere other than gym class?) and was the designated “doctor.” If a player was hit with the dodgeball, they’d just lie on the floor where they were hit. If the doctor could get to them and touch them, they’d be back in the game. The game ended by getting the doctor out, then all the rest of the players out.