There is a tv series on Channel 4 called "The Undatables" which I have just started watching.

The title keeps me wondering why it's not just called "the undatable" like the poor or the rich?

Last time I checked my grammar book, you only need an adjective after "the" to refer to a certain type of people.

Can you at least tell me why do you think the producer decided to make it plural by putting the "s" at the end?


  • Thank you for steering clear of why there isn't an apostrophe :) – Affable Geek Jan 26 '15 at 2:35
  • @AffableGeek Sorry? I don't get what you're trying to say. You thought I would ask why there's no apostrophe in the title? – Hyunsu Jan 26 '15 at 5:40

The "invincible" would be a general reference to anyone deemed invincible.

The "invincible seven" would mean seven particular persons or entities who are described as invincible.

The "invincibles" would be the appropriate proper name of a group, presumably of people, who wish to project themselves as being invincible.

The "undateable" is a general reference to anyone who is undateable.

The "undateables" would be an appropriate proper name/noun of a particular group, but not all, who are undateable.

BTW, the TV show is "undateables" not "undatables".

"Undatable" would mean being incapable of dealing with "data".

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  • I assume your comment about "undatatable" is meant to be humorous... – Erik Kowal Jan 26 '15 at 2:34
  • You seem downright possessed by this argument. :) – Affable Geek Jan 26 '15 at 2:34
  • OK, I edited the answer so that "undatatable" is now "undatable". – Blessed Geek Jan 26 '15 at 7:41
  • Is either geek datable? – Jim Reynolds Jan 26 '15 at 7:44

Undateable is an adjective used here as a noun.

However, poor and rich, in addition to being adjectives, are also mass nouns.

As mass nouns, they are treated as singular parts of speech even when they are inherently plural.

As such, you normally say, 'the blues', 'the untouchables', but because 'poor' and 'rich' are also mass nouns, you say 'the poor', 'the rich'.

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  • 1
    Could someone explain to me why this is being voted down? This is the grammatically correct explanation. – Paul Senzee Jan 26 '15 at 2:47
  • "Poor" and "rich" are adjectives just like the words "young" and "restless". No need to treat them specially. As far as I know, it's a grammatical rule that when "the" is followed by an adjective, it becomes a noun which refers to a group of people. The young and the restless for instance. It's the same with the rich and the poor. – Hyunsu Jan 26 '15 at 5:48

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