Blog / Citation Needed
is a blog on tumblr
run by Conor Lastowka
and Josh Fruhlinger
dedicated to hilariously bad Wikipedia
writing. Excerpts may be chosen because of poor grammar/spelling, triviality or irrelevance to the article, or just because they seem strange. While in the beginning excerpts were presented without commentary, Conor and Josh soon began adding snarky commentary
to each entry using the tags at the end.
The blog also has a podcast
hosted by Conor, where entries are expanded upon and turned into skits. There is also a book
featuring various entries from the blog with added comments.
Not to be confused for the Show Within a Show
] in Echo Chamber
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking:
- From Irrumatio: However, the passive partner might experience certain difficulties compared to less-aggressive fellatio, such as feeling as if they are abused, boredom, uncomfortable reflexes, coughing up saliva, vomiting, being unable to breathe, etc.
- If Day. "If Day included a staged firefight between Canadian troops and volunteers dressed as Nazi soldiers, the internment of prominent politicians, the imposition of Nazi rule, and a parade."
- "The band states that their greatest influences are David Bowie, The Devil himself, and Gary Busey."
- "The film takes the form of several ‘sketches’ in which she treats her patients (often mutilating, killing or introducing them to novelty show acting careers in the process)."
- Serial killer John Cooper "had a history of crime, including 30 robberies and violent assault, and a May 1989 appearance on the TV game show Bullseye."
- Raphael "is generally the most likely to experience extremes of emotion, and is usually depicted as being aggressive, sullen, maddened, rebellious, and from Canada."
- "Shrugging by coping with indifference and indecision, psychotherapeutic or psychoanalytic the effectuated unconditional aspect can indicate anxiety and numerous psychological disorders: a solute example is schizoid personality disorder. It can also be represented through keystrokes as ¯\_(ツ)_/¯."
- Bathos: One of the commonest forms of humour.
- "Ha-ha is a term in garden design that refers to a trench, one side of which is concealed from view, designed to allow an unobstructed view from a garden, pleasure-ground, or park, while maintaining a physical barrier in one direction, usually to keep livestock out that are kept on an expansive estate or parcel. Ha-ha is also what Nelson from the hit show “The Simpsons” says a lot."
- Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: "Asimov received frequent criticism about his books that they never included aliens or sex, so Asimov included in this book aliens, sex, and alien sex."
- Bread, Eggs, Milk, Squick:
- San Pedro Prison: "Significantly different from most correctional facilities, inmates at San Pedro have jobs inside the community, buy or rent their accommodation, and often live with their families. The sale of cocaine base to visiting tourists gives those inside a significant income and an unusual amount of freedom within the prison walls. Elected leaders enforce the laws of the community, commonly through stabbing."
- Balloonfest '86: "Outcome: World record for simultaneous release of balloons. Two dead."
- Captain Ersatz / Expy: In the podcast: The Professor and Crispin are self-aware parodies of Peabody and Sherman.
- Captain Obvious:
- Catch Phrase: It's Time Traveling Time, Bitches! (TTTB)
- Cliché Storm: Acknowledged in the article for the Rom Com "What's Your Number?"
Bostonian Ally Darling (Anna Faris) looks back at the past twenty men that she has had relationships with and wonders if one of them might be her true love. To revisit them, she enlists the help of her neighbor, Colin (Chris Evans). She obviously ends up with Colin.
- Closing Credits: In a shock twist, The Adventures of Elmo in Grouchland "ends with credits appear and roll."
- Department of Redundancy Department: From Dulcinia: "early in her career, decades prior to creating this canine heroine, the author wrote a critical essay on the novel Don Quixote entitled “Cinco personajes fugaces en el camino de Don Quijote” early in her career."
- Don't Explain the Joke: It is often considered humorous if a person is caught with his or her fly down.
- Double Entendre: On the Wikipedia page for Double Entendre itself: An example might be if one were to say "It’s too big to fit in my mouth" upon being served a large sandwich, someone else could say "That’s what she said," as if the statement were a reference to oral sex.
- Precious Puppies. The producers of Bebe's Kids apparently believe that "if the film featured cartoon dogs, it would’ve been more successful."
- Fan Wank: A slight Plot Hole in a 1979 Saturday Morning Cartoon? Don't worry, Wikipedia's got the answer.
- Grammar Nazi: Someone's clearly unhappy with the phrase "glass-bottom boat".
- Intercourse with You: Supposedly, "Let’s do it is the pioneer pop song to declare openly that sex is fun." In fact, "The phrase Let’s do “it” is actually a euphemistic reference to a proposition for a sexual intercourse."
- Large Ham: In the podcast: The film producer, in complete contrast to Gary.
- Logic Bomb: "The town [of Oxyrhynchus ] was named after a species of fish of the Nile River which was important in Egyptian mythology as the fish that ate the penis of Osiris, though it is not known exactly which species of fish this is."
- Long List: Given that Wikipedia articles are prone to Entry Pimping, many entries suffer from this.
- Magitek: Chaos Magic
- Mood Whiplash:
- The Dog Fancy skit is full of dark humor, and is legitimately creepy. However, the light-hearted music used to end all the other skits is still used; this is lampshaded by Conor afterwards.
- The skit based off of "Yogi's Ark Lark" ends with Quick Draw Mc Graw and Peter Potamus crying and cutting up their friends' bodies, who had committed suicide after they made seemingly-innocent remarks. This is followed by a goofy announcers saying that they'd be right back after commercials.
- Moving The Goal Posts: Only at Wikipedia could an explanation of this phrase end up with someone trying get the fleas off a dead cat.
- My Friends... and Zoidberg: Pleaser "has provided sexy shoes to about 40 to 50 countries including Sweden"
- Non-Indicative Name: Mothman.
- Not Even Bothering with the Accent: Two from the podcast:
- In the tortellini skit, the first Italian they meet has no accent; however, the second Italian has a stereotypical one. This is handwaved by Conor, who says that it's the Professor's language serum wearing off.
- After the Ark Lark skit, he says that it took place during the "great voice actor strike of 1972", so that instead of the iconic voices of the various Hanna-Barbera characters, they just had a couple guys talking normally.
- Oktoberfest: "it is still simply unimaginable for a non-Swiss [German speaker] to enjoy alcohol in Massen”, probably leading to old use where necessary."
- One-Hit Wonder: Daniel Powter "is known for his number-one hit “Bad Day”. Since that hit he has seemingly dropped off the face of the music industry."
- Overly Narrow Superlative:
- Fuckin’ ‘Ell, It’s Fred Titmus is "The funniest song ever written about an England and Middlesex cricketer".
- "Nemesis is the 37th highest grossing Cyborg - Robot -Android movie since 1980 grossing $2,001,124 in its theatrical run in 1993"
- Over Used Running Gag: Each episode of the podcast starts with of list of bizarre or over-specialized podcasts that Citation Needed has supposedly outlived. By episode 8, one of the podcasts named is "Running Gags To Start Your Podcast With That Are Becoming Increasingly Hard To Think Of".
- Reading the Stage Directions Out Loud: In episode 4 of the podcast, Conor Lastowka and Kevin Murphy reenact a skit from Mystery Science Theater 3000 about "Owner of a Lonely Heart". Kevin alternates between saying "singing" and "normal voice"; Conor says everything in a normal voice regardless.
- Recycled In Space: Acknowledged in the Baby Island example, which is summed up as Robinson Crusoe but with four babies along for the ride.
- Rule-Abiding Rebel: Nick Kroll "gave a contentious graduation speech in which, contrary to widespread belief, he did not expose his genitals, although he did gently chastise the school administration"
- Rules Lawyer: Wikipedia claims the drug MDPV is legal in Ohio... because the law banning it contains a spelling error.
- Running Gag: Each podcast episode begins with Conor listing the podcasts that didn't last as long as Citation Needed.
- Serious Business: Chicken coops, Bubble O'Bill ice cream, and Corgies, among other things.
- Shaped Like Itself: The protagonist of Nekromantik brings a romantic gift of a corpse to his girlfriend "like a husband returning with a romantic gift for his awaiting wife".
- Special Effects Failure: Chessie the Sea Monster is not looking her best.
- Stuffy Old Songs About the Buttocks: Honky Tonk Badonkadonk. "It is assumed that the lyrics refer to buttocks which are pleasing to the narrator."
- Sturgeon's Law: "However, because of the very nature of unmoderated newsgroups, alt.sex.stories soon found itself a repository for a great number of poorly-written, sometimes barely coherent “stroke” stories consisting of a few sentences or paragraphs."
- Take That: From the podcast:
"Your screenplay is M. Night Shyamalanesque in its vapidity, brainlessness, utter incoherence, and soul-deadening effects. Also, I guess because it has a twist ending."
- That Makes Me Feel Angry: "Kenan comes back and sees that Kel is eating the sandwich and he got sad."
- The End... Or Is It?: Committed (2000 film)
Eventually Joline is committed, hence the title, and her belief in true and lasting love is broken… or is it?
- The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: Another frequent problem, often caused by the fact that anyone can append their favourite factoid to the end of a list regardless of whether it fits. For an example, from Great American Classics: "There is a companion series, Heroes of America, consisting of biographies of eight famous Americans such as Jackie Robinson, Eleanor Roosevelt, Benjamin Franklin and Dracula."
- Vomit Chain Reaction: "It is quite common that, when one person vomits, others nearby become nauseated, particularly when smelling the vomit of others, often to the point of vomiting themselves."
- Your Head A-Splode: At the end of one of the movie pitch skits for the podcast, the producer's head explodes after Gary responds to a plot hole with "never mind".