Created By: Prfnoff on October 13, 2012

Marked Money

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Currency that has been treated in some way that allows it to be traced back to someone who used to own it.

This kind of money can be created either deliberately or accidentally.

  • In Astérix and the Cauldron, when the Romans are levying new taxes, the Gaulish chief Whosemoralsarelastix throws out a cauldron of onion soup, fills it with his people's savings, and brings it to the indomitable Gaulish village for safekeeping. Asterix, assigned to guard the cauldron, vows to insure the chief for all his sestertii, which becomes much harder after the money is stolen behind his back. After many misadventures, he ultimately succeeds at gaining money by robbing a tax collector, only to notice as he heads home that not only are there exactly enough sestertii to fill the cauldron, but they smell of onion soup.
Community Feedback Replies: 8
  • October 13, 2012
    • Early in The Dark Knight, Batman had given the police marked bills that could be tracked by scanners. Unfortunately, this got leaked out to the mob, and they ended up leaving those bills and taking the unmarked ones.
  • October 14, 2012
    • At the end of a A Simple Plan, the already dark story fully embraces black comedy and becomes a Shaggy Dog Story when the protatonists learn that the serial numbers of the stolen money were written down, making it useless for actual use without raising flags and law enforcement attention.
  • October 14, 2012
    • In an episode of Recess the gang had various fortunes which appeared to come true, but then were subverted; Spinelli finds a bank note but one of the Ashleys is able to prove it was hers by giving the serial number.
  • October 14, 2012
  • January 10, 2013
    • In Emil And The Detectives Emil is able to identify the marks which were stolen from him because they each have a small pinhole where he had pinned them to the inside of his trousers.
    • In a Cold Open of Cheers it is revealed that Woody memorizes the serial numbers of every bill he gets just in case he loses it.
  • January 10, 2013
    • In Season 3 of Justified Winnona steals some money from the evidence room without realizing that all the serial numbers were recorded. One of the banknotes is taken from her during a bank robbery and when the robbers are caught, the banknote is scanned into the Secret Service database where it raises all sorts of red flags. Raylan then has to figure out a way to return the rest of the money to the evidence room so it looks like the single banknote was just a fluke. Ironically, the money is stolen again by someone who knows that the money is marked but he decides to go to Mexico and spend the money there.
  • January 10, 2013
    This often falls into one of two categories: The money itself is fake, or the money is real but has been rigged in some way (maybe the briefcase has a tracking device or Booby Trap).

    • In Last Action Hero, Jack Slater informs Danny that a drawer full of money (in his ex-wife's house) is fake; "it turns funny colors when you burn it". Later, when Danny tries to distract The Dragon and his Mooks with it, their Genre Savvy leader suspects it's fake and orders them to burn it -- which alerts Jack Slater that something's up when he spots odd-colored smoke coming from the chimney smoke of the house.
  • January 11, 2013
    Many works involving kidnapping have the kidnappers demanding that the money they receive be in "small, unmarked bills".