Definition of wacko in US English:

wacko

(also whacko)

adjective

North American
informal
  • Mad; insane.

    ‘his willingness to pursue every wacko idea that enters his mind’
    • ‘Not some fringe wacko doctor, but a doctor with significant power over a large hospital.’
    • ‘We didn't mean to suggest that these wacko protesters represent a broad segment of the Canadian people, any more than similar groups represent the thinking of mainstream Americans.’
    • ‘I guess it was just a couple of wacko losers in Brazil with nothing better to do.’
    • ‘David Burke, a creator of animated whacko content for TV, has assembled a few brilliant scoundrels and put up a site filled with juvenile humor and neat animation.’
    • ‘Amid the live rampages and wacko tracks, it's important not to miss ‘Too Late the Hero,’ Entwistle's best ballad and a technically complex number.’
    • ‘A collection of awesome, eccentric, fascinating and completely whacko facts.’
    • ‘How long before someone charismatic, competent, and efficient takes charge of one of these wacko organizations?’
    • ‘I pretended to be a reporter so they didn't mark something down on DJ's record like wacko parent.’
    • ‘One of the perks of Adrants is that it spots new, whacko trends in the advertising world just about sooner than anyone.’
    • ‘Still, you have to admire his ability to make a long established religion seem like some sort of wacko cult.’
    • ‘There is plenty of wacko UFO coverage, including remarkable photos of blurry lights that just have to be flying saucers, because it's not like they could be anything else.’
    • ‘I'd already done the book on Cobain's murder and I didn't want to get typecast in the book world as this wacko conspiracy nut.’
    • ‘Equally disturbing is what sort of messed up wacko ideas are floating around their heads regarding what is going on in the real world.’
    • ‘In my own view I think that's a whacko statement.’
    • ‘At least you'll know you're not the only one dealing with all this wacko stuff.’
    • ‘He is the kind of wacko leader that is very rare and perhaps not seen on the world stage for 50 years.’
    • ‘We do get our share of wacko e-mails, but nothing on the scale you report.’
    • ‘The silence is all the more troubling since in the past the US news media has had no problem at all covering other wacko conspiracy theories, ones with far less evidence to support them.’
    • ‘What separates him from the average band leader is his willingness to pursue just about every wacko idea that enters his mind.’
    • ‘Maybe agreeing with their parents' wacko idea was going to be fun after all.’
    severely mentally ill, mentally ill, insane, mad, certifiable, deranged, demented, of unsound mind, out of one's mind, not in one's right mind, not together, crazed, maniac, maniacal, lunatic, unbalanced, unhinged, unstable, disturbed, distracted, stark mad, manic, frenzied, raving, distraught, frantic, hysterical, delirious, mad as a hatter, mad as a march hare
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nounPlural wackos

North American
informal
  • A crazy person.

    • ‘‘All kinds of weirdos, wackos, whatever, were involved with us,’ he confides.’
    • ‘At last the whackos were exposed, the pretenders unmasked.’
    • ‘You can't go far wrong with a foreign policy whose opponents are mainly dictators, anti-American European politicians and leftist whackos.’
    • ‘I find it amazing that for a young nation such as ours, with such a small population, we have an abnormally large concentration of religious whackos.’
    • ‘No longer will they associate it with nutters, wackos and the irredeemably mad.’
    • ‘This is not to say we didn't get our share of itinerant whackos.’
    • ‘Nobody said anything scary, all the whackos were kept locked away somewhere.’
    • ‘He just wasn't willing to break the law and refuse to follow a Federal court order, and for that outrageous sin, he is deemed just not quite nutty enough for this bunch of whackos.’
    • ‘It appears to me to be one whacko testifying against another.’
    • ‘In any case, I do think that trying to characterize the anti-war movement by the wackos is just what I said: a misrepresentation of the political opposition.’
    • ‘What's the point, they're wackos and we shouldn't put them on TV.’
    • ‘You'd better hope so, because now if he falls we have no way of controlling what whackos get hold of his nukes.’
    • ‘I'm happy to coordinate a group working through the Forum, but don't expect me to invite any of you psychotic whackos to my home for dinner and a movie.’
    • ‘If you are among the protesters whom the Wall Street Journal unaffectionately calls ‘Luddite whackos,’ you may take a little credit for that.’
    • ‘If anyone seriously suggests that then I think they're in wacko land.’
    • ‘Well, they finally admitted they agree on everything, you know, after months of trying to paint one another as wackos, they come out and tell us the awful truth.’
    • ‘And people might have said, ‘Oh, those Hollywood Democrats are a bunch of left-wing whackos.’’
    • ‘Are you one of those wackos who still can't accept defeat?’
    • ‘The seven-second delay is the system radio and TV stations have used for decades to filter out wackos and expletivists (hey!)’
    • ‘Clearly they get a lot of dumb illiterate wackos writing in, but I bet most publications do, quite frankly, and they don't publish 'em, by and large.’
    eccentric, oddity, odd fellow, unorthodox person, individualist, nonconformist, free spirit, bohemian, maverick, deviant, pervert, misfit, hippy, dropout
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Origin

1970s: from wacky + -o.

Pronunciation

wacko

/ˈwakō//ˈwækoʊ/