"Godzilla is either breaking the laws of physics or he's throwing around an empty rubber suit!"When special effects look really cheap and dodgy, to the point of pulling the audience out of the narrative, you have a Special Effect Failure. All-too-common prior to 1980, and still with us today despite relatively inexpensive digital effects that can be very convincing and realistic... but often aren't. The audience's expectations for effects have grown up with the media. For example, it is obviously a dummy being thrown from a train in The Great Train Robbery — but since it was filmed when filmmaking itself was in its infancy (1903 to be exact), people forgave it. If a modern remake had done that, however, they would not have been nearly as kind. Sometimes a Special Effect Failure is caused by resorting to Off-the-Shelf FX. Many examples are just plain Bloopers (a literal failure of the effects). In a video game it can be because of Model Dissonance being revealed by a glitch or oversight. Sometimes cheesy FX are regarded as part of the So Bad, It's Good charm of a work. Sometimes authors will intentionally aim for this as a form of Stylistic Suck.
— Tom Servo, Mystery Science Theater 3000
Examples with their own pages
- Anime and Manga
- Films — Animated
- Films — Live-Action
- Game Shows
- Live-Action TV
- Professional Wrestling
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- Western Animation
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- The Chinese animated series The Adventures of Kiki and Qeqe have several animation errors; for example, one of the titular characters in the air appears frozen.
- In-Universe from Calvin and Hobbes: The Series, combined with Nightmare Retardant:
Hobbes: Bumper cars are fine when there aren't ghosts constantly flying down in your face!
Calvin: They were paper and on fishing line!
- The “destruction” of Munich terrorist facility in James Bond fan film Diamonds Cut seems to intentionally go for the Camp factor with what seems like a really bad photoshop. Absolutely nothing collapses and the only signs of destruction are little tongues of flame with thin tendrils of smoke at the forefront.
- Essentially all of the special effects in the animated version of The End of Ends, but Count Logan's dragon form breathing fire stands out.
- In Parody Fic Plan 7 of 9 from Outer Space, the alien abductor D'Ork of the Thorkoth looks like a cheap prop from a Roger Corman film, has a Killer Robot that's just a diving helmet on a gorilla suit, and pilots a Flying Saucer that's held up by visible strings.
- Quite a few examples exist of two main failures: putting up the wrong headline or accompanying image (the small pics appearing next to a news anchor's head for each story) and someone who decided to wear the wrong shade of blue or green, causing the clothing to pick up images or video meant for the green/blue screen behind the anchor. Weather forecasters are particularly prone to the second one, given all the use of this type of imaging in their segments.
- People responsible for news graphics are only human, and sometimes they put up a picture of the wrong person. Here is a case where that happened.
- Pretty much the whole of the Avatar: The Last Airbender fancomic How I Became Yours. Special mention goes to all the copied poses. Diaz copies from everything, mostly the show itself (though she often uses Ichigo as a model for Zuko), and often uses the same artwork over and over (Iroh is depicted in the "holding out the white lotus tile" pose from "The Waterbending Scroll" several different times). He's also depicted in a pose from "The Storm" wherein he is in a dark room and lit from below by a fire, and no attempt was made to change the lighting, despite the How I Became Yours scene taking place in bright sunlight.
- She also has a nasty habit of making characters change position by rotating their models, which tends to make them look more like mannequins than people. The most infamous example is when Sokka and Zuko carry Aang off after a sparring session, but it also makes the Toph/Aang sex scene unintentionally hilarious when you realize that the characters are in the same position the entire time.
- When Diaz doesn't copy, the characters tend to look Uncanny Valley, like one scene where Aang has a twelve year old's face, a teenager's body, and elongated limbs.
- Ever-omnipresent, as long with Off-the-Shelf FX, in The B-Movie Comic.
- In Commander Kitty, Mittens and Fluffy's plan for creating a fake teleporter effect involves distracting Ace right before CK himself shows up with an accompanying spray of glitter. The actual execution leaves much to be desired as well.
- Parodied by Freefall, where cheesy special effects have been painstakingly re-created by CGI, including the wires.
- Referenced in Skin Horse where UNITY refers to Tip's new wolf form as a plywood shark.◊