It’s Not All It’s Cracked Up To Be


If something is not all it’s cracked up to be, that means it was a disappointment. It failed to meet expectations.

Example: People are buzzing over this new restaurant in town, so I decided to eat there to see what the hype was about. Well, after finishing my meal, I think it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. In other words, it was a disappointing experience.

1. It doesn’t live up to the hype
2. It’s not all that
3. Not as good as it was made out to be

The Origin Of “It’s Not All It’s Cracked Up To Be”

When you hear the word “cracked,” you probably think of something that has been damaged. For instance, dropping your phone on the ground could result in a cracked screen. However, with the expression “it’s not all it’s cracked up to be,” this word has a different meaning.

In other parts of the world, such as Ireland, the word “crack” or “craic” can mean things like news, gossip, or fun. Some people might also define it as “to banter” or “to talk.” That last one fits especially well, because this phrase is basically a way of saying that something is not all it’s talked up or cracked up to be. In other words, it’s not as great as people said it would be.

Anyway, the earliest I could find this expression in print is the year 1835. Davy Crockett, a politician at the time, was quoted as having said the phrase. For instance, when commenting on someone running for president, he was quoted as saying:

“Martin Van Buren is not the man he is cracked up to be.”

Example Sentences

  • Ashley recommended me one of her favorite movies. She was hyping it up a lot and we tend to have a similar taste in films, so I watched it; afterward, my thoughts were that it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.

Similar Example:

  • My friend said this game would be super fun, but it’s not all that.
  • People at my school were saying great things about this one song, so I listened to it and it doesn’t live up to the hype.

Tip: We have tons of common phrases and sayings on here that you can learn about. We have different categories for them too, such as animals, sports, and food. To find all of these phrases and sayings, use the menu at the top. After you select a letter, you will be taken to a list of expressions that correspond to the letter you selected.