¿Qué eso? VS ¿Qué es eso?
These seem to be interchangeable and I know some of you are thinking that I am just not hearing the "es" in between qué and eso, but there's 10 million hits for "Qué eso" and at least one song titled "Qué eso". If you remember my infamous parrot post the guy in that video says "¿Aye, qué eso?".
I agree with Marianne.
I don't care if there are 30 million instances of "qué eso" in Google. That is not correct Spanish, and no literate or educated Spanish speaker would ever say "qué eso" unless it is some sort of affectation or attempt to be cute, as in the example that Marianne cites.
If you want to ask "what's that" in Spanish, you say "qué es eso", never "qué eso".
Having say that, some Caribbean accents contract the "es" to a point where it sounds like "qué'eso" or "quéjeso", but nevertheless, at least the attempt to pronounce the "es" is always there.
I'd be one of those people who say that either 1) you are just not hearing the "es" before "eso" or 2) some Spanish-speaking people have stopped saying the "es" because of a lazy way of talking, and it's become common.
Sort of like "Whatch doin' " leaves out the "are you" in the middle of the sentence.
I really like the explanations you have all given, they underline that on this site we do want to learn the correct way and not the casual way, you can check out 'native speakers' on some posts (emphasis on 'some posts') and you can find all kinds of errors which arise from casual and common usage. Sometimes I have to do a doubletake and doubts start to creep in. That's when I am pleased to find a good reliable poster like these just for confirmation.
I think it's a bit like us saying 'what's that?' instead of 'what is that?' and I know how you hate it but I couldn't help but try to answer and I am, dare I say it, just guessing lol
Also looking at the google hits for 'qué eso?' say at the top of the list there's a video, that. yes did come up for 'qué eso?' but on the side of the same video is the caption 'qué es eso?' which is part of the reason I'm thinking this
But I'm sure that a native speaker will give you a much more logical answer if one's out there.