->''"The greatest lesson in life is to know that even fools are right sometimes."''
-->-- '''[[UsefulNotes/WinstonChurchill Sir Winston Churchill]]''', 1941 address to the U.S. Congress

This is a subversion of inaccuracy for artistic license; the research wasn't done, but the writer was still correct on at least a few points -- by complete fluke.

This can be hard to tell from ShownTheirWork, and can often only be seen in context with the rest of the work--ShownTheirWork would prove to have all research shown, AccidentallyAccurate is hit and miss.

If research not available at the time of the writing proves them right, that's a case of ScienceMarchesOn meeting this trope; if the work turns out prophetic, that's DatedHistory meeting this trope. If the theory would never have been accepted by researchers working in whatever field (e.g. Professor [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexander_Abian Alexander Abian]]'s theory that we should blow up the moon to stop Typhus), it's just the writers fertilizing some EpilepticTrees. If the writer was just showing off an obscure fact that he or she knows, that's ShownTheirWork. Compare: RightForTheWrongReasons. For the same principle applied to tactics, see StrategySchmategy. Compare: AccidentalTruth, in which an in-story lie by a character turns out to be true after all, and TheCuckoolanderWasRight, for In-Universe examples of something similar.


[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* ''Anime/SpaceBattleshipYamato'' had the Yamato encounter a belt of space rocks outside the orbit of Pluto. Modern audiences would recognize this as the Kuiper Belt--except the Kuiper Belt was discovered in 1992 and Yamato is from 1974.
* ''Manga/{{Akira}}'': The film depicted Tokyo about to host the 2020 Olympic games. It came out in 1988, 25 years before IOC confirmed Japan would host the 2020 Summer Olympics.
* The 2006 version of ''Manga/{{Doraemon}}: Nobita's Dinosaur'' featured feathered ''Ornithomimus'' with wings. 6 years prior to [[http://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/feathery-ostrich-mimics-enfluffle-the-dinosaur-family-tree-92942719 this study]].

[[folder: Fan Works]]
* Many {{Dramatic Reading}}s of ''FanFic/MyImmortal'' scoff at the line which says that it was snowing and raining at the same time. This is known as "sleet" in Commonwealth Nations and United States and it very much happens in the real world. If you believe one of the people who confessed to writing it as a TrollFic, the author thought it was impossible and put it in as a joke.
** It has also "rained" slush, which also works.
* The ''WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender'' fan comic ''HowIBecameYours'' infamously included a scene of [[spoiler:daytime bloodbending]] which was thought to be impossible in the universe of the show, until ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra'' introduced three characters who were able to do it, not that the author of the fic would have known this at the time. This is especially ironic since it's a fic that more or less personifies CanonDefilement, yet managed to be pretty spot on about the metaphysics of the world.
* In ''Fanfic/LightAndDarkTheAdventuresOfDarkYagami'', the narrator claims that Wales is "A town in England". In reality, there ''is'' [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wales,_South_Yorkshire a small village in England called Wales.]]
** Although not one called 'whales',as the author persistently spells it.
** Also, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blood_banana Blood Bananas]] (Blud the shinigami's TrademarkFavoriteFood) are actually a real thing.

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
* The creators of ''WesternAnimation/IceAge'' made Scrat, the sabre-toothed squirrel, as a joke. [[http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2011/11/03/141997834/scientists-unveil-fossil-of-saber-toothed-squirrel-that-lived-among-dinos But later scientists unearthed a prehistoric sabre-toothed squirrel-like mammal, albeit from the Mesozoic rather than anytime close to the last ice age.]] [[note]] [[AnachronismStew All of the characters come from different prehistoric periods]] anyway... [[/note]]
* Titan's rant in ''WesternAnimation/{{Megamind}}'' includes this little gem: "There is no Easter bunny, there is no tooth fairy, and there is no queen of England!" [[EskimosArentReal The intended joke is clear]], but there actually hasn't been a monarch of England since the Acts of Union 1707 united England and Scotland to form Great Britain. Currently, the title is "Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* [[ArtisticLicensePaleontology Any paleontologist watching]] ''Franchise/JurassicPark'' could, among other things, [[DanBrowned call out the movie]] for its depiction of velociraptors as man-sized monsters when ''real'' raptors were about the size of turkeys. Only two years prior to the movie's release, however, paleontologists discovered ''Utahraptor'', which really ''was'' about the size of the raptors in the movie. And at the time [[Literature/JurassicPark the book]] was written, Gregory Paul had proposed reclassifying ''Deinonychus'' as ''Velociraptor antirrhopus'', believing the species to be similar enough to ''Velociraptor mongoliensis'' to justify it being a different species in the same genus, rather than in its own genus. Crichton chose to follow Paul's nomenclature, rather than the standard.
* In ''Film/JurassicParkIII'', ''Spinosaurus'' was portrayed as being larger than ''TyrannosaurusRex'' and at that time it was believed to be the other way around. Later in 2006, ''Spinosaurus'' turned out to be not only larger than a ''T. rex'' but also the largest carnivorous dinosaur of them all. A later evidence indicates that ''Spinosaurus'' was also aquatic, making the climatic scene where it rises out of the water while swimming also somewhat accurate (and at the same time its maneuverability on dry land and the dramatic fight from ''Jurassic Park 3'' very unrealistic).
* In ''Film/QuatermassAndThePit'' (1967), the protagonists uncover remains of primitive humans from five million years ago. The characters state that no such remains have ever been found back that far in time before. In 1974, Lucy would be found and she would be the oldest human/hominid remains at 3.2 million years until even earlier specimens were found, making the concept of humans being in existence within a five million year range well within possibility.
* While ''Film/AClockworkOrange'' was incorrect in its assumption that mini-cassettes would become a popular audio medium, the record store filled with LP's would not look out of place today.
* Some have questioned the credibility of the fact that Captain Englehorn in ''Film/KingKong'' is able to translate the language of the islanders, who have apparently never had Western visitors before. He describes it as similar to the language of the Nias islanders. Nias is a real place in Indonesia, but the language of the film is completely fabricated. Nonetheless, Englehorn's ability to translate is not all that implausible; most of the languages of the Pacific share common enough roots to be mutually intelligible to fluent speakers.
* ''Film/ThisIsSpinalTap'' goes for a SophisticatedAsHell gag by having one of the band members describe his song as being influenced by [[Creator/JohannSebastianBach Bach]] and [[Creator/WolfgangAmadeusMozart Mozart]], only to reveal that it's entitled "Lick My Love Pump". Such a title would, in fact, have precedent in Mozart's oeuvre, which contains a vocal canon named "Leck Mich im Arsch" (in German literally "lick me in the arse" resp. "kiss my ass").
* Creator/StanleyKubrick and the DoctorStrangelove production team got themselves in trouble with the US Air Force because their interior sets for the B-52 bomber were suspiciously accurate, even though the plane's layout was classified. The filmmakers had started with the appearance of a WWII-era B-29 flight deck, along with a single photograph from a book cover, and simply expanded it based on the B-52's exterior dimensions. Evidently they did an excellent job.
* While TheWizard got many facts wrong, they did properly pronounce NinjaGaiden (as the ''WebVideo/TheAngryVideoGameNerd'' mentioned in his NinjaGaiden video).

[[folder: Literature]]
* Improperly used adjectives are all over ''Literature/TheEyeOfArgon'' (amongst other linguistic woes). Surprisingly, "scarlet" emerald isn't one of them: they're also called [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beryl#Red_beryl red beryls]]. It's unlikely that Jim Theis knew this.
* In ''[[Literature/{{Twilight}} Eclipse]]'', Bella, Edward, and Jacob hide out in the mountains on the same evening that there is a freak snowstorm. There really was a freak snowstorm in that region of the United States in June of 2006.
* Creator/JRRTolkien seems to have acquired the gift of prophecy while writing ''[[Literature/TheHistoryOfMiddleEarth The Notion Club Papers]]'' in 1944, given that he gives 1986 as the date of [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Challenger_disaster a space programme disaster]], [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chernobyl_disaster a nuclear disaster]], and [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Storm_of_1987 the greatest storm ever to hit England]]. The last one was a few months out -- in RealLife it happened in 1987.
* Creator/TomClancy has actually been detained by the government for suspicion of divulging national secrets in his novels. He was released because he was able to show the research he had done, which was available to the public, and how he had extrapolated from it for the plots he wrote about. In this case, he ''was'' doing his research, and ''was'' trying to be accurate, he just turned out to be much, MUCH closer to reality than he realized he would be.
** In ''Debt of Honor'', published in 1994, Clancy imagines a plane being deliberately crashed into an important building as a terrorist attack.
* Aldous Huxley's novel ''Literature/BraveNewWorld'' was written before the discovery of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, yet not only did Huxley have the lower classes in the series exposed to alcohol as fetuses to make them stupid, but he also correctly identified the other symptoms as well.
** Depending how much leeway you give him, you could also say that he predicted modern consumerist culture. Sure, he saw it as random toys and sports with equipment that takes up enough manufacturing resources to keep the economy chugging along, but the constant turnover in smart phones and other electronics, coupled with the amount of money we as a society spend on media and related [[TheMerch merch]], it's too far off a prediction.
* The famous incident involving "Deadline", a short story sci-fi pulp written by Cleve Cartmill in 1944 which described how to build a uranium-fission bomb, using information taken from technical articles published before the war. The FBI demanded the issue be removed form the newsstands, but editor Creator/JohnWCampbell convinced them [[RevealingCoverup this would only alert the world]] that the US government was working on building such a weapon. Campbell himself wrote a story in 1936 called "Frictional Losses" that predicted the Japanese use of explosive-laden kamikaze planes (in that case, to fight an AlienInvasion).
* The 1940 anti-isolationist ''Lightning in the Night'' predicted a US War with Japan and Germany would begin with a surprise attack at Pearl Harbor and end with Atomic Bombs (!)
* [[Franchise/TheHitchHikersGuideToTheGalaxy Six times nine is indeed forty-two]]--in ''Base 13'' notation (it's 54 in Base 10, the numbering system we use every day). Douglas Adams responded to the revelation with "I may be a sorry case, but I don't write jokes in base 13."
* The 1898 novella ''Futility, or, The Wreck Of The Titan'' became famous after [[Film/{{Titanic}} a real similarily-named ship, in similar conditions, met the same fate]] [[HistoryMarchesOn fourteen years later]].
* Creator/AlFranken's ''The Truth (with jokes)'' ends with a letter to his grandchildren, supposedly written in 2015 (the book was published in 2005) about all the things that have happened in politics since then. Some of his predictions are wrong, and some are just for jokes (Karl Rove goes to prison for punching a cop, but continues to advise the 2008 Republican race). He does correctly predict that [[UsefulNotes/BarackObama a Democrat]] (that he specifically avoids naming) wins in 2008 and again in 2012, and that Al would be elected to the U.S. Senate in 2008.
* In December 1870, Creator/HenrikIbsen wrote a poetic letter from Dresden, making a point of not liking Prussian militarism in the newly united Germany. On the way, he prophezised that this German militarism might get out of hand and spell trouble for everybody. [[UsefulNotes/WorldWarI He was damn straight!]]. Even more jarring is the mentioning of a certain General von Moltke (being known as the one taking the helm after the battle of Marne). In context, Ibsen referred to von Moltke the elder, ''also'' a general, who helped defeat the French in 1870. ''If he only knew''...
* In ''Literature/ThreeMenInABoat'', first published in 1889, the narrator muses on how his contemporary Victorians love Ancient Greek pottery and sculpture that would have been very ordinary in its day. He wonders if in the 20th and 21st centuries people will similarly adore very ordinary things from his own period, and place them in museums, and have {{Japanese Tourist}}s coming to take pictures of them—an almost eerily accurate prediction. In ''Literature/ThreeMenOnTheBummel'' he also discusses the national virtues and vices of the Germans, and says that as long as the Germans have a good and competent government, they'll be fine, but if an evil cabal were ever to gain control. . . .
* In the ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' book ''Discworld/TheLastContinent'', there's a joke about the snakes of [[LandDownUnder XXXX]] being eaten by the spiders. [[http://www.9news.com.au/old-gallery/2012/09/12/20/44/spiders-snack-on-birds-snakes Meet the Golden Silk Orb-Weaver.]] Australia: 1; hyperbole: 0.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* ''Series/RowanAndMartinsLaughIn'' made a joke in 1969 about the future news, setting California governor UsefulNotes/RonaldReagan (who had run in the 1968 Republican primaries) as president of the U.S. in 1988[[note]]his last full year in office, as it turned out[[/note]].
** Likewise, in 1969, they made a joke in their news of the future about the Berlin Wall coming down[[note]]Sure enough did in 1989[[/note]].
* ''Series/SeaquestDSV'' had an episode where a character claims to have found something in the handwriting of the Greek poet Homer. This has to be incorrect, because it would be impossible for a blind man to write something that wasn't written down for many years. While it's not clear whether the writers knew it, there is a significant amount of scholarship debating whether Homer was actually blind and whether ''The Odyssey'' was written, as opposed to an oral narrative.
* ''Se Lo Que Hicisteis'' made a joke where they referred to the Manga/{{Dragon Ball}}s as "Chinese balls", which refers to.... huh, anal beads. ''Manga/DragonBall'' is a Japanese series, but of course, InterchangeableAsianCultures and All of Asia is China, so the show ''must'' hail from China, right? Except the balls are originally named in Gratuitous Chinese (A fact all Spanish dubs removed), so they're technically right. It's unlikely the guys who keep on saying the ManekiNeko is Chinese knew this...
** Even more hilarious if you know that the series was originally loosely based on JourneyToTheWest, one of the Four Great Classical Novels of Chinese literature.
* The season 34 episode of ''Series/SaturdayNightLive'' had a sketch about people who would benefit from the 2008 bailout that happened when the global economic meltdown was still fresh. Darrell Hammond and Casey Wilson played a couple named [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herb_Sandler Herbert]] and [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marion_Sandler Marion Sandler]] (no relation to Creator/{{Adam|Sandler}}) who screwed Wachovia Bank out of a lot of money and profited from the economic meltdown. Now, considering that there were two other fictional characters introduced before them, you'd expect Herbert and Marion to be fakes, too, right? Not in this case: turns out Herbert and Marion Sandler were real people who did exactly what the sketch said they did (Creator/LorneMichaels didn't realize this until after the sketch aired), making the brief clip of them being described as "People who should be shot" by a lower-third graphic tasteless (which explains why the NBC website video and the televised reruns got rid of that scene in the "2008 Bailout" sketch).
** Chevy Chase on ''Series/SaturdayNightLive'' had a joke on Weekend Update about the murder of performer "Professor Backwards" (who was able to read, write and speak backwards written words). Chase said he wasn't saved because people ignored his cries of "Pleh Pleh". Chase later apologized, saying he had no idea there was such a performer and that he had actually been murdered.
* On an episode of ''Series/WheelOfFortune'', host Pat Sajak joked that the show had only used the category Fictional Family eight times when it came up in one round. At the end of the show, the research department found out that it actually ''had'' been used only eight times. ([[SubvertedTrope However]], a fan has found out that it was actually the category's 10th appearance.)
* In a game of the original ''TheHollywoodSquares'', Buddy Hackett was asked which country has the most doctors proportional to population, to which he jokingly answered "The country with the most Jews! I would say Israel. you have a doctor in every family, it's a cousin, could be an uncle. Couple of specialists...". The contestant agreed, prompting Buddy to ask "You agree with that?" before host Peter Marshall revealed the correct answer was indeed Israel, much to Buddy's amusement.
* Something like this happened in ''Series/TheWire'' with the character Kenard, who's seen briefly in season 3 arguing with some other corner kids about who gets to "play" Omar in their stick-up game, and comes back in season 5 where he [[spoiler:assassinates Omar]]. The writers didn't actually realize that it was the same kid and only found out he'd been cast in both roles later, making it an unintentional case of ChekhovsGunman. Creator/DennisLehane, who wrote that episode, has jokingly said that [[IMeantToDoThat he meant to do that]].
* InUniverse Example: ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' had an episode called "Future Imperfect", in which Riker supposedly woke up sixteen years into his future, but it was actually [[spoiler:a hologram created by a lonely alien orphan named Barash]]. As it turns out...
** ...Riker commented on how odd it felt to have a Ferengi helmsman. [[Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine Nog became an ensign nine years later (and served as the helmsman of the]] ''[[Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine Defiant]]'' [[Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine in the final battle with the Dominion]].
** ...Riker noted that there were more Klingons in Starfleet, notably a female that he passed on a deck. [[Series/StarTrekVoyager B'Elanna Torres, a female Klingon/Human Hybrid worked as a chief engineer on a Starfleet vessel four years later]].
** ...Picard tells Riker that peace talks with the Romulans began four years ago (from the future that Riker was in), and that Riker's ship was instrumental in doing so. [[Film/StarTrekNemesis It's just that, right down to the date]].
** ...and finally, Troi is seen wearing a Starfleet uniform, although she didn't wear one in the show at the time. [[Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration She started doing so two years later, although it was during the same series]].
* There are two ''Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries'' episodes where the ''Enterprise'' travels back in time to the contemporary 1960s. In the first one, "Tomorrow is Yesterday", it's mentioned that three astronauts are taking part in a manned moon shot on Wednesday. Two years after the episode aired, Apollo 11 blasted off on July 16, 1969 (a Wednesday) carrying three astronauts (Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins). In "Assignment: Earth", Spock discusses how chaotic the time period is and mentions that, "there will be an important assassination today." Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated six days after the episode aired. Also, the episode's plot involves stopping the U.S. from launching a nuclear weapon into space, which involves plenty of Saturn V StockFootage. A Saturn V rocket carrying Apollo 6 was launched on the same day that King died.
* ''Series/{{Community}}'' had a joke where [[ButtMonkey Britta]] is said to have a favourite superhero character called ''Comicbook/{{X-M|en}}an''. It's presented in-universe as a joke, with Britta either not knowing the names of the actual X-Men character she likes and calling the character X-Man instead. However, there's actually a real character named 'ComicBook/XMan' in the Marvel continuity. The character, X-Man, is an alternate-universe version of Cyclops’ future son, Cable.
* The shortlived 1987 series ''Second Chance'' had a throw away joke involving UsefulNotes/MuammarGaddafi arriving at the Pearly Gates which listed the date of his death as July 29th 2011. Less than three months away from the real date (October 20).
* In the ''Series/StargateSG1'' episode "Orpheus" Jack O'Neill mans a sniper rifle during a rescue operation against a Goa'uld POWCamp. He aims for center of mass. Falls here because the showrunners' reasoning for doing that was because [[PinkMist headshots are messy]] and they didn't want to have to argue with the network censors, but trained snipers in real life aim for center of mass because it's an easier target.
* Show continuity version: One of the ''{{CSI NY}}'' tie-in novels had Mac recall that Claire liked opera. Several years later, "Indelible" had Mac surprising her with opera tickets on the morning of 9/11/2001, to her delight.
* On ''{{Series/Hannibal}}'' and [[Literature/RedDragon the book it's based on]] Will Graham's "empathy disorder" as it's called by the writers is stated as being fictional but on the same spectrum as autism and {{UsefulNotes/Aspergers Syndrome}} but being characterized by an ''over''reading of social cues that overwhelms him rather than the difficultly instinctively reading them that occurs in real life. However several newer theories of autism suggest that what's described in Will's case may in fact be true of more people on the autism spectrum than previously thought, something that both the original author Thomas Harris and series writer Bryan Fuller were likely unaware of, the former especially since the book was first published in 1981.
* A much-criticized scene in an episode of ''Series/{{Firefly}}'' had Jayne place his beloved rifle [[ICallItVera Vera]] in a spacesuit in order to fire in space, with the given reason that it needs oxygen to fire. Bullet propellants contain all that's needed for combustion, meaning that normal guns should be able to fire in the airless environment of space. However, there actually is a valid reason for putting an atmosphere around it: exposure to hard vacuum can cause many types of non-specialized lubrication to flash-evaporate, causing the working parts to quickly wear out to inoperable.
* In an episode of ''Series/OneFootInTheGrave'', Victor Meldrew tests positive for blood in the stool after eating black pudding. Obviously this is the sort of crazy contrivance that could only happen to a sitcom character who is the ChewToy of a cruel universe... except that a couple of years after this episode aired, a study discovered that eating black pudding really can and does cause false positives. Nowadays they tell you not to eat black pudding before a colonoscopy for this reason.
* The infamous line uttered by a character from ''{{Baywatch}}''; "I love playing Mario on my Atari!" There were in fact, games featuring Mario available on the Atari 2600, such as Donkey Kong and Mario Bros. The line was outdated, but not inaccurate.

[[folder: Mathematics]]
* One theory about UsefulNotes/FermatsLastTheorem is that Fermat's proof was actually wrong, but the results were correct anyway. In fact, this is almost universally believed within the mathematical community. Fermat always ''did'' turn out to have a proof when he said he did, so it's likely that he at least ''thought'' he could prove this. Fermat essentially created several areas of math despite not publishing much of his work, including a general form of integration along with finding a general way to get rates of change, making it possible that far from being mistaken, he did discover a proof for a special case and generalized it incorrectly (the book that he wrote it in was actually the first attempt ever to use a symbolic system to write algebra). Given the insane complexity of Andrew Wiles's proof, very few mathematicians believe that 17th-century mathematics could have produced any solution at all, much less a simple one. Both of the theorems Wiles used to make his proof were twentieth-century in origin. Also, the theorem holds the record for the most ''wrong'' proofs.

[[folder: Music]]
* It's unlikely that Music/MariaNayler was talking about [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boolean_Logic Boolean logic]] when she sang the line "one and one still is one" in Robert Miles' "One & One", but she hits the nail on the head.

[[folder: Newspaper Comics]]
* ''ComicStrip/{{Garfield}}'' [[DoesNotLikeSpam hates raisins]]. While this was just because [[AuthorAppeal Jim Davis hates them]], in real life they are poisonous to cats.
* One ''ComicStrip/PearlsBeforeSwine'' strip has Guard Duck at a fancy restaurant ordering "chateaubriand, cooked medium well." In the commentary for that strip, Stephan Pastis admitted that he only used chateaubriand because it sounded fancy without knowing what it was, but he hoped it really was a type of food. It is--it's a type of steak, which can be cooked medium well.

[[folder: Print Media]]
* ''Magazine/{{MAD}} Magazine'' and its parodies of the ''Franchise/{{Rocky}}'' movies:
** In "Rockhead III", because Rockhead twice stands nose-to-chest with his ring opponents, he remarks, "If this kind of posing keeps up, I want my next match to be with Creator/DollyParton!" Stallone's next film after ''Film/FirstBlood''? ''Rhinestone'', where he acts opposite guess who.
** In "Rockhead IV," during "Appalling Greed's" funeral, "Brawly" muses to "Atrium," "I wonder which one of us gets our ticket punched in 'Rockhead V'?" While it doesn't happen during the events of ''Film/RockyV'', one of them [[spoiler: (Adrian)]] is indeed dead before the events of ''Film/RockyBalboa''.

[[folder: Proverbs]]
* "A stopped watch is right twice a day." Even someone who is wrong all the time is bound to be right sometimes. Depending on the context, this can be implied to be either accidental or one is giving credit where it's due. The trope also holds on a more literal level, at least on a twelve-hour watch face.%%Not everyone is a native English speaker.
** Also a stopped clock is right twice a day, but a clock that is off by even a second is never correct.

[[folder: Science]]
* The Greek philosopher Leucippus created the atomic theory, as an argument against another philosopher, Parmenides. While Parmenidies argued against the idea that a state of nothingness could exist, Leucippus argued that there were in fact voids and that everything that was not a void was made of small units of matter that assembled to create larger ones. Aristotle scoffed at the argument, stating that in a complete absence of matter, motion would no longer encounter friction and allow for infinite speeds, which he saw as ridiculous. Well, turns out that what Aristotle used to try and discredit the theory is pretty close to what actually occurs to objects in motion in space.
* Finnish naturalist Immanuel Ilmoni hypothesized in the early 18th century that diseases were actually living beings, not unlike animals. While he was ridiculed, the germ theory of diseases was confirmed less than hundred years later.
* The [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infinite_monkey_theorem infinite monkey theorem]] states that a monkey typing randomly at a keyboard will type out the complete works of William Shakespeare given an infinite amount of time. More generally, he'll type out every book that has ever been written or ''ever will be''. There's also a joke that starts this way but ends with "Now, with the invention of the Internet, we know that's not true."

[[folder: Stand Up Comedy]]
* In his famous [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JdxkVQy7QLM Pachelbel Rant]], Rob Paravonian makes some very inaccurate claims about the piece, such as getting the date wrong by more than a century. However, the one thing that he admits that he doesn't know is the composer's first name, but guesses that it's Johann, since "they're all named Johann". Turns out he's dead right about that one.
* In Weapons of Self Destruction, Creator/RobinWilliams joked about the next pope after Benedict would be from Latin America or Brazil. Come 2013, Pope Francis is elected and hails from Argentina, making this borderline HilariousInHindsight.

[[folder: Theatre]]
* The play Abigail's Party makes a humorous reference to putting red wine (Beaujolais) in the fridge, as a comment of misguided middle class aspirations in the 70s. However, playwright Mike Leigh later learned that Beaujolais is one of a few red wines that is best when chilled.
* In ''Theatre/TheMikado'', W.S. Gilbert used the name Ko Ko because he thought it was [[InherentlyFunnyWords funny sounding]], and didn't know at the time that it is a legitimate Japanese name. Just ask [[LightNovel/GoldenTime Kouko Kaga]].
* One of the biggest points of academic contention about ''Theatre/{{Hamlet}}'' is whether or not the eponymous Prince of Denmark is ''actually'' mad, or just faking it. The Vikings did allegedly have some sort of taboo against killing a person afflicted with madness, which makes pretending to be one a viable survival trait for the son of a usurped Danish king. Apparently, it's doubtful that Shakespeare would have been aware of this. Even so, it's not entirely a coincidence. While Shakespeare wouldn't have known about this taboo, the authors of his source material would have. He probably kept the ObfuscatingInsanity plot without understanding the societal context of it.
* The play ''Theatre/{{Brand}}'' by Creator/HenrikIbsen made an eerie prophecy concerning the concequences of British pollution reaching Norway, leading to dying forests and lakes. The play was written in 1866, while this problem became apparent in the 1980s. The accuracy of this passage is quite chilling:
-->Britain s smoke-cloud sinks corroding
-->On the land in noisome fume ;
-->Smirches all its tender bloom,
-->All its gracious verdure dashes,
-->Sweeping low with breath of bane,
-->Stealing sunlight from the plain,
-->Showering down like rain of ashes
-->On the city of God s doom.

[[folder: Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/SuperMarioSunshine'', Mario dies instantly when he falls in lava. When he dies in lava, Mario stays on top of it rather than sinking into it, because the lava is actually just water with a lava texture added to it. This is what would happen in reality since molten rock is incredibly dense, you'd just remain atop it while you quickly and horribly burn to death.
* ''VideoGame/HotelMario'' is [[MemeticMutation infamous]] for "All Toasters Toast Toast", [[FountainOfMemes among other things]]. Yes, toasters usually toast ''bread''. They also re-toast toast and finish toasting toast. The toaster toasts one's bread but doesn't toast it to one's preference, the now-toast will be put back into the toaster to toast some more. Also, somewhere between the bread entering the toaster and the toast leaving the toaster the bread must have become toast, all but guaranteeing that at least some of the time it is being toasted in the toaster it is already toast.[[note]]We apologize if the word "toast" [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semantic_satiation no longer sounds like a real word]].[[/note]] Alternatively, all toasters toast bread that will eventually ''become'' toast.
* ''VideoGame/DeusEx'':
** The game came out in 2000, but takes place in 2052; it has, in certain areas, the New York City skyline as background scenery, but missing the Twin Towers. This was due to technical limitations, but the explanation the developers gave is that they were destroyed in a terrorist attack some time in the game's past. This may have been an educated guess on their part, as the World Trade Center had been the target of a terrorist bombing back in 1993, but not nearly on a large enough scale to actually topple any of the buildings. As well, terrorism is a large part of the game's plot, so that explanation fits within the mythology, too.
** Another one that sort of adds a little uneasiness, in the mission where you save someone from a gas station, you can see the prices. At the time it may have represented something far off, as gas prices were on average about $1.20 and the game depicted gas prices at $3.58, for regular. Cue 10-12 years later after the game's release and that's exactly where those gas prices are.
** Most thought provoking, or perhaps scary, example can be read on government sponsored electronic bulletin boards across the game. One article found at the very beginning of the game tells readers to keep an eye out for terrorists and report any suspicious activities. The messages are clearly intended to be alarming signs of the dystopian state of the current government, both in the fear mongering "everyone can be a terrorist" message used to scare everyone into accepting the {{Big Brother|IsWatching}} level of control the government has, and in the invasion of privacy advocated by suggesting a thorough background search on anyone who is a foreigner or has spent too much time on the net. Thus, it's rather shocking how close this came to actual suggestions put out shortly after 9/11 for 'how to spot a terrorist'. What are you supposed to think when their own government is now repeating word for word the distopian messages were told to watch out for?
** Its prequel, ''VideoGame/DeusExHumanRevolution'', has the collapse of the Detroit automobile industry and the city's slow descent into financial ruin as part of its story. The game was released in 2011, but the ideas were thought up years earlier. The first occurred not that long after the ideas were written, and the second occurred only a few years later. What's more, real world Detroit has been attempting to reinvent itself as some kind of midwest Silicon Valley as a backup solution to its industrial decline. Considering that Sarif industries and other nanotech-related enterprises are located in Detroit, this trope could apply again in a few years.

[[folder: Web Original]]
* In ''Website/{{Cracked}}'' article "[[http://www.cracked.com/blog/10-brilliant-comedy-gems-hiding-youtube_p2/ 10 Brilliant Comedy Gems Hiding on Youtube]]," the author quips that he hopes the authors of "[[Franchise/StarTrek Jean-Luc Picard]] Doesn't Give a Fuck" only stopped making them "because they became super famous and died from all the sex and money that was thrown at them." As a number of the comments pointed out, the reason they stopped making them was so one of them could work on ''Webcomic/{{Homestuck}}'', this article having been written after the celebrated 2.5 million dollar {{Kickstarter}}.
* When Arin of the ''WebVideo/GameGrumps'' plays ''VideoGame/KirbySuperStar'' with Jon, he calls a boomerang-wielding enemy "Boomer Man". The enemy's actual name is "Boomer".
* [[http://www.sonicstadium.org/2012/10/snow-joke-this-is-a-sa2hd-review-by-the-suns-standards/ This]] article from Sonic The Hedgehog fansite The Sonic Stadium about [[http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/fun/gaming/4586437/Sonic-Adventure-2-video-game-review.html/ this terrible review]] from the British tabloid newspaper The Sun decribing that it sounded something like what Fox News would write. In fact both The Sun and Fox News are owned [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rupert_Murdoch/ by the same guy.]]
* At the end of [[http://duckyworth.deviantart.com/journal/Duckyworth-s-Thoughts-The-Tigger-Movie-2000-479443901 this review]] for ''[[Disney/TheTiggerMovie The Tigger Movie]]'', Duckyworth wonders if the director, Toby Bluth, is related to [[Creator/DonBluth Don Bluth.]] [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toby_Bluth He is.]]
* During his review of ''Film/TankGirl'', WebVideo/TheNostalgiaCritic gets repeatedly frustrated with the overuse of comic drawings instead and guesses that the makers simply forgot to shoot several scenes and had to improvise. As it turns out, he was partially correct - in an interview, co-creator Jamie Hewlett said that he and Alan Martin had to animate several scenes because the producers forgot to film them.
* For TVTropes itself, the description of the page InvincibleHero used the PerfectlyCromulentWord "vincible" to mean the opposite of "''in''vincible". Not only is it perfectly cromulent, it's perfectly real as well. And it means exactly what it's suggested to mean: beatable.

[[folder: Web Comics]]
* In the webcomic ''Webcomic/DMOfTheRings'', the players tend to mangle their characters' names. At one point, "Gimli" introduces himself as "Gimli, son of Groin", obviously mispronouncing "Glóin". However, in ''Literature/TheLordOfTheRings'' canon, Gimli actually ''is'' descended from a Gróin[[note]]As is everyone, really[[/note]], who is his grandfather.

[[folder: Western Animation]]
* Examples from ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'':
** In the commentary for "The Crepes of Wrath", the writers note that the bit about adding antifreeze to wine was a parody of an incident where some wine was found contaminated with antifreeze, but that, obviously, the contamination wasn't deliberate. Except that the contamination was discovered when a winery started listing antifreeze as a business expense, and it was very deliberately added to make the wine sweeter [[note]] This is definitely dangerous, though not as dangerous as it sounds. Ethylene glycol is indeed poisonous, but when mixed with sufficient quantities of ethanol, it passes harmlessly into urine. It's still more expensive than sugar or corn syrup, though..[[/note]].
** While the writers may have known that a torus is one of the contenders for the shape of the universe, Homer certainly didn't know that when he told StephenHawking about his theory of a doughnut-shaped universe.
** Abe Simpson once recalls his father talking about America being the greatest thing since sliced bread. He then says that sliced bread had been invented the previous winter. It was just meant as an old fart joke, but given that he served in WWII and the first commercial bread-slicing machine was invented in 1928, the writers were surprisingly accurate with this one.
** In [[Recap/TheSimpsonsS7E13TwoBadNeighbors Two Bad Neighbors]], Homer attempts to prank UsefulNotes/GeorgeHWBush with cardboard cut-outs he identifies as "your sons, George Bush Jr. and Jeb Bush". In the audio commentary for that episode, it's said that the writers had no idea that there really ''is'' a "[[UsefulNotes/GeorgeWBush George Bush Jr.]]" and the line was supposed to be an example of Homer being stupid. Stupider like a fox, it seems.
* Dolphins are frequently given an AlternativeCharacterInterpretation as violent, venal and murderous animals, unlike their "actual" gentle and caring personality. As anyone who has studied dolphin behavior can tell you, [[http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1200/is_n3_v154/ai_21003387/ this interpretation is truer]] [[http://www.miaminewtimes.com/1993-09-01/news/the-flap-over-flipper/ than you might believe]]. It's not clear which, if any, writers knew this when they used it.
** ''The Simpsons'' did this in "Treehouse of Horror XI".
** ''The Pet Professional'' also did this.
** As did ''Webcomic/TheAdventuresOfDrMcNinja''.
** ''[[Series/MysteryScienceTheater3000 MST3K]]'' also plays on this, as dolphins attack the Satellite of Love with interplanetary dolphin warships.
** ''WesternAnimation/KingOfTheHill'' did it with Hank getting raped by the dolphin at the La Grunta resort.
** ''WesternAnimation/ThePenguinsOfMadagascar'' gives us another evil dolphin, Dr. Blowhole.
** ''ComicStrips/PearlsBeforeSwine'' has killer dolphins in one arc.
** It's worth noting that the Dolfury from ''TabletopGame/{{Mortasheen}}'' is almost definitely ''not'' a case of this. The setting and monsters are created by a biology enthusiast fascinated with the so-called "dark side" of nature, and who often seems to hold "cutesy critters" like dolphins in open contempt. The chances that he ''didn't'' know that making his dolphin-derived monsters violent sadists who are popularly (and not necessarily incorrectly) regarded as one of the only monsters that are genuinely evil was TruthInTelevision to some degree closely approaches zero.
* The ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'' episode "The Cyber House Rules" features the line, "This jigsaw of a pacifier factory makes me want to have children with you even more." Originally the line was "This jigsaw of a barn makes me want to have children with you even more." By coincidence, the Swedish word for children is ''barn'', a cognate of the archaic English "bairn" when means "children". "Bairn" is etymologically related to "born". Maybe the joke was cut because it was esoteric, even for a show that often has jokes about science and math that no one would get unless they were college or grad school-educated.
** The Scottish terrier from "Disney/{{Lady and the Tramp}}" refers to the new baby as a "wee bairn," so obscure but not unknown.
* ''WesternAnimation/TheAdventuresOfJimmyNeutronBoyGenius'':
** It's CommonKnowledge that diamond is overall the hardest natural substance on Earth. What only a relatively small handful of people know, however, is that for all that durability, diamond is astonishingly brittle. It is, in fact, not only possible, but surprisingly easy to take a hammer and chisel to a large chunk of the stone for the purposes of breaking off smaller fragments suitable for either jewelery or industrial purposes. So when Jimmy baited a T-Rex into slamming headlong into an enormous stone to get a smaller one suitable for his jury-rigged time travel remote, in the episode ''Sorry, Wrong Era''? Not only is that possible, but completely and utterly plausible; the show uses unabashedly wrong and fictional science just because it coasts along on both RuleOfCool and RuleOfFunny, so chances are good that the writers behind the show didn't do their homework this time either.
** Similar joke occurs in an episode of JohnnyBravo: a thief is trying to steal the world's largest cubic zircon, but when she tries to cut the glass case with a small buzzaw the blade dulls since the case is actually made out of diamond. She then smashes Johnny's head into the case and it breaks. Not only is this exactly what would happen in real life (diamond is extremely hard, and therefore resistant to cutting, but is also brittle and will shatter if hit hard enough), the way the case shatters is pretty accurate too (it doesn't break into shards like glass, but seems to crumble to dust: when diamond shatters it breaks along crystal planes into multiple tiny diamonds rather than shattering like glass).
* ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark'' did an episode with a character called Sexual Harassment Panda that satirized how difficult subjects (like sexual harassment) are often presented to children in a sugar-coated manner. Turns out [[http://www.deltadentalnj.com/company/panda.shtml there is a program called P.A.N.D.A.]] that deals with how to deal with sexual harassment at both school and work.
* In ''WesternAnimation/SpongebobSquarepants'', a common location is Goo Lagoon, an underwater ocean. It could just be chalked up to RuleOfFunny, until you realize that underwater lakes [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KzUEr7uMnXU do exist]]. Whether Goo Lagoon was an intentional reference to this phenomenon [[note]]considering the show's creator is a marine biologist[[/note]] or just a joke is up for debate.
* In ''PhineasAndFerb'', Perry the platypus makes a strange growling sound by chattering his teeth. It turns out platypuses really do make such a noise, though they don't make it by chattering (Platypuses don't have teeth, after all).
* ''WesternAnimation/MyLittlePony'' has a predominantly female cast. Of course this because it is a show marketed to girls, but in real life groups of horses are almost all female with sometimes a 'herd stallion'. In contrast, [[WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic Generation 4]] has the most male characters and happens to have had the most [[ShownTheirWork research put into it]].
* One episode of ''WesternAnimation/FamilyGuy'' had a CutawayGag of a cow ''really'' enjoying getting milked. This is actually true for cows and other dairy animals as it relieves pressure on their udders, and can sometimes be quite erotic to them as well. ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' also does the same thing in one of their Treehouse of Horror episodes, where Ned Flanders takes pleasure and relief in getting milked when his lower half got transformed into the body of a cow.
* The [[UsefulNotes/TheWorldCup 2014 FIFA World Cup]] was accompanied by a German parody show called ''Hoeggschde Konzentration''. The episode right before the match against Brazil had the Germans completely ridicule their opponents, expecting to win 6-0 (yes, this is ridiculously high by soccer standards). The writers certainly didn't expect them to win 7-1 in RealLife.
* An InUniverse version shows up in ''WesternAnimation/TheLegendOfKorra''. CorruptCorporateExecutive Varrick puts out a ridiculously obvious and over the top set of propaganda films against [[TheEvilPrince the Northern Water Tribe Chieftain Unalaq]] designed to turn public support against him and towards [[LaResistance the rebels fighting against him]]. Varrick does this purely because Unalaq's edicts are bad for his own business, and his films transform TheFundamentalist, self-righteous, HolierThanThou Unalaq into an OmnicidalManiac MadScientist planning to use a DoomsdayDevice to destroy the world. This turns out to be ''far closer'' to Unalaq's [[TheAntichrist real personality and goals]] than either fans of the show or people in that world would have guessed at the time, not that Varrick knew about that or would have cared.

[[folder: Real Life]]
* This apparently happened twice due to correspondence between Galileo and Kepler. Scientists at the time would sometimes write down discoveries with scrambled letters when they weren't ready to publish their findings, but wanted to establish priority of discovery. Galileo wrote two such letters to Kepler, one concerning his discovery of Saturn's rings, the other concerning the phases of Venus. Kepler tried to unscramble them both and ended up with different sentences, one claiming that Mars had two moons and the other that there was a moving red spot on Jupiter. By complete coincidence, both of those claims were correct, but neither would be proven for centuries.
* As to Phobos and Deimos (the two moons of Mars): in 1727, Jonathan Swift mentioned in the third part of ''Literature/GulliversTravels'' that the scientists of Laputa had discovered two satellites of Mars, at distances that were much smaller than those of any known moons at the time, and with rotation speeds that also were out of kilter with any known moons. When Asaph Hall discovered the moons in 1877 these numbers were so close to the real ones, that he named them Phobos and Deimos (Fear and Terror).
* Averted : a newspaper crossword-puzzle editor was once briefly arrested for using the words "Overlord," "Utah," "Omaha," "Mulberry" and "Neptune" in a number of puzzles in the weeks leading up to D-Day[[note]]"Mulberry" was the codename for the portable harbors that the Allies brought over until the port cities of Cherbourg and Le Havre could be taken and repaired enough to allow supply ships to dock, while "Neptune" was the codename for the actual D-Day landings on the Norman coast that established the beach head -- "Overlord" was the umbrella name for the entire operation, which lasted from June 6 until August 25.[[/note]]. The same editor, Leonard Dawe, had previously been investigated for having put "Dieppe" as an answer -- on August 18, 1942, the day before the disastrous Allied raid on Dieppe was to launch. An investigation at the time could only conclude that it was a bizarre, and astonishing coincidence. Only in the 1980s did the answer come out -- the crossword-puzzle editor was a teacher, and he used his students to collect odd words. One of those students had hung around military camps and bases enough to overhear the unusual words being spoken, and promptly turned them over.