The U.F.O. flew contemptuously through the ack-ack bursts of a destroyer. A beam of energy stabbed down, and the hapless vessel was instantly transmuted into an exploding WW2 battleship.Stock Footage is a Necessary Weasel in most broadcast productions. Your average studio just can't afford to have 42 cars on hand to be blown up on camera (108 backups for when the take goes bad). So they have 13 scenes using 4 models of cars. These are supposed to represent all of those 42 cars the show will be going through this season, in all of the various settings the show will go to. The cars and settings are usually similar enough that it takes a while (and perhaps multiple viewings) for the viewer to notice a discrepancy. This trope is for when the viewer notices it right off. Without having to leave the couch. It's also for when the error is so obvious, it has the viewer screaming "How did they slip that up?!" Often, using the wrong car, setting, clothing, person, hairclip, etc., will call the series' continuity (or at least the writer's grasp thereof) into question. Compare Special Effects Failure, where the pretty lights and sounds added to a scene filmed for the production are not up to par, and Obvious Stunt Double, when it's obvious that a stunt double is being used instead of the actor.
— Plan 7 of 9 from Outer Space
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Anime & Manga
- While Sailor Moon was usually very good with the stock footage for the transformations, attacks and pre-battle speeches, there were a couple background errors with the Inner Senshi's "Star Power" sequences in the R season. The first happened in the very first sequence; although the colorful whooshing background shouldn't fade in until after Sailor Mercury's nails are colored, the sequence didn't start with a black background the first time. There was also a group transformation a few episodes later where Sailor Mars was given the wrong background for part of her transformation. Ordinarily it would look something like this, but she got Venus's background for the first part.
- Sailor Moon Crystal has a sequence where Sailor Moon shouts out one attack but the footage uses another.
- In Fist of the North Star, the third episode of the rather detailed and well-animated Season 4 re-uses a shot of Kenshiro cracking his knuckles from Season 1, back when the animation was stiff, simplistic, and sort of stylized. The contrast between this shot and the rest of the episode is quite jarring, particularly because this is the only time in Season 4 that something like this occurs.
- Lampshaded in Puni Puni Poemi.
It doesn't flow very well visually, but this is the bath time version!
- The iDOLM@STER - The last episode uses several footages from the first and second openings, but when Azusa and Takane are dancing they appear to be in front of a set of stairs, just for in the next take they be shown to be still descending the same stairs.
- In the third and fourth Pretty Cure All Stars movies, they constantly show Yuri's transformation sequence with her Pretty Cure Seed being rebuilt... despite the fact that, at the end of her series, the seed was fully repaired after she retrieved the other half of it.
- Akazukin Chacha has stock footage of the Power Trio using their artifacts to transform Chacha into "Magical Princess." Normally these are fine, but they use the same stock footage even when Shiine and Riiya are chained to a wall and shouldn't be able to move.
- A few Season 1 episodes of Pokémon show Ash with his hat backwards while throwing a Poké Ball—even when he didn't turn his hat backwards.
- In the last episode of Digimon Frontier, when the Chosen Children fuse together into Susanooomon, the evolution footage shows Takuya and Koji's first Digivices rather than their current ones.
Films — Live Action
- All Monsters Attack is basically just one big "stock film".
- The octopus in Ed Wood's Bride of the Monster is a classic example. The stock footage shows a real life octopus swimming around underwater, but in scenes when actors tangle with it, it's a limp, unmoving and obviously fake one made of rubber sitting in a puddle of water.
- Godzilla vs. Gigan was quite infamous for its over-use of stock footage. Particularly grating is the fact that the fight scenes would randomly shift from day-to-night due to the film using footage from Destroy All Monsters and Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster.
- Likewise, there's Mothra's accidental cameo within said stock footage of GTTHM... even though she wasn't even supposed to be in the film Godzilla Vs. Gigan at all.
- Gigan, in turn, is a source of stock footage for Terror of Mechagodzilla. Note how the orange muscle car belonging to the Interpol agent turns into the orange hatchback from Gigan when it blows up.
- Like All Monsters Attack, Gamera: Super Monster re-uses fight scenes like mad.
- In one of the Batman movie serials there's a scene where a black car goes over the edge of a cliff. But the stock footage used for the car actually going over is a black van.
- In the 1966 Batman: The Movie, stock footage of a Polaris missile is used twice. Unfortunately, the second time it appears, it's been horizontally flipped, meaning that the letters on the missile labelling it a Polaris all appear backwards.
- Invasion of the Neptune Men uses footage from the 1960 nuclear war film World War III Breaks Out in what is supposed to be a kid's movie.
- "They blew up the Hitler building!"
- It's been suggested that that particular shot was not an example of stock footage failure. Apparently, this may have been a reproduction of the giant billboards for 1960 Swedish documentary "Mein Kampf" about Hitler which were scattered through downtown Tokyo.
- Kevin Murphy has said that not only did they cut every scene of the stock footage they could out of the movie for its MST3K riffing on moral grounds, but that the stock footage was so abhorrent to them that they riffed the film a new one with a vehemence that made merely bad films like "Manos" The Hands of Fate, Monster a-Go Go and The Castle of Fu Manchu pale in comparison.
- He even has a song for the occasion...
- "They blew up the Hitler building!"
- "Manos" The Hands of Fate itself has a notable one near the end, where the family is trying to escape into the desert at night and the father shoots his gun at a snake—which is shown in close-ups shot in broad daylight.
- Star Trek: The Motion Picture: A lot of the film's many many many Leave the Camera Running sequences were used to depict the Enterprise from then to the very end of the TOS movies. Even Star Trek: Generations uses Klingon Bird of Prey footage, and at one point the Enterprise-B is the Excelsior. That's the one that really doesn't work, as some tweaks were made to the model, and the scene of the Excelsior at warp is very recognizable.
- Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan reused several scenes from the previous film. Averted slightly in the sense that the Klingon ships were in a simulation using footage recorded during the V'Ger Incident. What definitely isn't inverted is how in the 12 years since the previous film that guy in the spacesuit is still standing on spacedock doing flips.
- In The Hunt for Red October, a damaged aircraft crashing on the deck of the carrier changes from what should be a modern (for the time) jet to an F9F Panther, an aircraft 30 years older than the one it is supposed to depict. The look of both the footage and the plane is obvious.
- Also, a Soviet torpedo launched from a turboprop splashes down looking precisely the same as the American torpedo later dropped from a helicopter.
- In the James Bond movie You Only Live Twice, for an American rocket launch they used stock footage of a Soviet Soyuz rocket, and for a Soviet rocket launch they used stock footage of an American Gemini rocket.
- As a necessary inclusion to this list: the So Bad, It's Good Plan 9 from Outer Space features stock footage of Bela Lugosi walking. It is, sadly, an appropriate metaphor for both the actor himself and the movie he was to appear in.
- Birdemic: Shock And Terror uses chunks of stock footage from Getty Images during the in-universe news broadcasts. Fair enough, right? Except they did not actually shell out the money for the footage, and some of it as a result has a great big Getty Images watermark plastered over it.
- In Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, when Baraka is thrown into a fire-pit in the shape of the MK logo, it shows an earlier scene of Rain falling in before being consumed in flames.
- Proving no film is above this, at least in the pre-CGI era, Citizen Kane has a jungle picnic scene in which the background footage is lifted from The Son Of Kong. You can plainly see pterodactyls flying around. Maybe Charles Foster Kane founded InGen...
- In Gokaiger Goseiger Super Sentai 199 Hero Great Battle (an HD movie), during the battle against the Black Cross King's evil Ranger clones, the clones of the Changemen, Flashmen, Turborangers, Livemen and Maskmen attack the Gokaigers and Goseigers with their BFGs...and by "their BFGs", we mean unremastered stock footage from their original series in The '80s of them firing their BFGs. Considering how amazingly gorgeous the rest of the movie was, the jump to mid-80's quality stock footage was jarring. This happens again later, in the battle against the Black Cross Colossus, with every mecha joining the fight. Nearly all of the finishers used by the mecha are the stock footage of the finishers from their respective series. It can be jarring when it goes from a finisher used in a 2000's series to one used in the early 1990's. Adding insult to injury, the non-mecha vehicles from Goranger and JAKQ, Variblune and Sky Ace, respectively, get shiny new CGI models (and Variblune even gets a combo with Gokai-Oh), yet none of the mecha (that didn't already have CGI models) do. On the other hand, at some points it's subverted within the same scene, with certain finishers being seamlessly edited together (such as Battle Fever Robo and Dai Bouken).
- The Day After lifts tons of footage from First Strike (a documentary speculating about nuclear war). At one point, a character mentions that Beale Air Force Base has been nuked. Later, in First Strike stock footage, Beale Air Force Base is reporting that Soviet missiles are incoming.
- All over the place in Midway. Mitigated somewhat in that casual audiences might miss them, but stick out blatantly to anyone with even a little knowledge of WWII aviation:
- A crashing SBD Dauntless dive bomber at the end of the film uses what may be the same footage of an FH-1 as in The Hunt For Red October, as listed above.
- When Ens. George Gay is forced to ditch his crippled TBD Devastator the clip is of an F6F Hellcat.
- Speaking of the F6F, stock footage of Hellcats is used for pretty much every scene intended to depict the F4F Wildcat. The Hellcat wasn't deployed in combat until September of 1943 (the Battle of Midway was in June of 1942) and though sharing a family resemblance, there's really no mistaking a Hellcat for a Wildcat. This includes takeoff, landing and dogfighting scenes, and the famous scene of Tom Garth crash-landing his damaged fighter and splitting it in half after striking the tower.
- Most combat scenes of the Devastator torpedo bombers instead uses the TBM Avenger. While there were Avengers involved at Midway, there were only six, all of them from a squadron on the island.
- For that matter, the American dive bomber attack tends to replace the two-seater SBD Dauntlesses with single-seat F4U Corsairs. The Dauntless looks pretty much nothing like the Corsair. Other times SB2C Helldivers were used. Much like the Hellcats-for-Wildcats example above, the Helldiver appeared much later in the war. Unlike that example, it bore no resemblance to the Dauntless whatsoever.
- A B-17 crash-landing at Midway was stock footage also used in Tora! Tora! Tora!. Doubly egregious because the aircraft not only is flying an earlier-war paint scheme, but because the runway it was utilizing was at a large and fully-paved airbase. Midway was...not.
- The same B-17 crash-landing stock footage was also used in the 1990 film Memphis Belle. While closer to actual (the runways looked correct), the early-war paint scheme and the poor CGI slide, in the opposite direction to the spin in the stock footage, afterward makes this one stand out also.
- Generally averted, surprisingly enough, with the Japanese aircraft. Most footage of Zeros, D3A Dive Bombers and B5N Torpedo Bombers utilizes the modified T-6 Texan Aircraft Understudies rather than stock footage, and what footage is used tends to depict the correct aircraft.
- A Hard Day's Night: When The Beatles get into the cab to their hotel, they're all wearing suits and ties, but when we cut to them driving off, John Lennon is inexplicably wearing a turtleneck and jacket, in footage taken from one of their tours.
- The Hunger Games has an in-universe example of this. The stock footage of District 13 has the same mockingjay in it it ends up being one of the factors in the revolution movement
- Also that same clip is shown every year for seventy-five years, and somehow the background is always burning.
Live Action TV
- In the pilot The Adventures of Superpup, the Jimmy Olsen mouse actually lampshades one at around 7:35.
- Frequent on Power Rangers. Outfits regularly change during the transformation sequences, since they were usually not wearing the same civilian outfit as they were in the stock footage, with shirt colors suddenly changing, skirts becoming pants, accessories vanishing, hairstyles changing, and in at least one case, a shirt appearing. Later seasons handwaved it by having the stock footage of them be of them in a uniform, and make sure that the character was wearing the uniform in the new footage before morphing.
- Particularly noticeable when the Rangers first use their Power Weapons. The Zyurangers each used their respective weapons while unmorphed, which would then transform when they morphed. Thus the American series has the Rangers inexplicably holding random weapons that are then 'powered up'.
- In the original "Green With Evil" storyline from Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers, footage of Burai from Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger was used to represent Tommy being transformed into the Green Ranger by Rita. The audience was apparently supposed to ignore that "Tommy" is clearly Asian for a few seconds when he first appears in Rita's fortress.
- Also in Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers, when they have a closeup of their morphers or weapons during the scenes that used stock footage, you can sometimes see the word "Zyuranger" printed on them.
- One episode of Mighty Morphin has Rita capture a girl and hold her captive. Although she wears the same clothes as her Japanese counterpart, she clearly becomes Asian in brief shots. One wonders why they didn't just hire an Asian child to play the part.
- Particularly bad in Power Rangers Time Force, where Mirai Sentai Timeranger stock footage is used in several scenes important to the plot. It doesn't cause plot holes because of their similarities, except several critical scenes have Wes suddenly turn Japanese.
- Or the entire staff of Bio-Lab the time the building was invaded. In fact, there are several times when there's suddenly a disproportionate amount of black hair in crowd scenes.
- Eric looks very much like his Timeranger counterpart Naoto, so much that one dramatic, non-stock-footage morph was kept, during the multi-parter that introduced the Quantum Ranger. Unfortunately... Eric wasn't wearing his hat and Naoto was in that scene, so as we switch angles whilst he and Wes are charging at each other for their second battle, he suddenly goes from hatless to hatted. So close to awesome, yet so far...
- Linkara notes in his commentary for the end of the Mechakara arc in Atop the Fourth Wall that it's OK that his glasses reappear during the morphing sequence, as that is what happens in the show.
- In the early seasons, you could tell when it was stock footage because the camera quality was grainier. Later seasons were perfectly clear, to the point of some people being unable to tell when the show is using stock footage, and when it is not, particularly when a ranger morphs and does not go through the usual Transformation Sequence, though there are still a few giveaways, one obvious one is that, whenever the US teams makes their own version of the costumes, for some reason, they almost inevitable use a much brighter shade of pink.
- As far as newer seasons go, Power Rangers Operation Overdrive is possibly the one exception. In the Sentai footage, the rangers are much bulkier, plus the shoulder pads and chest insignia on their costumes are way smaller. Compare the suits in the stock footage◊ to the suits in the American footage.
- Still, though, sometimes tweaks are visible. Nadira's outfit covers less than Lira's, Marah's hair is black while Furabijou's is brown, and in Power Rangers Samurai, it's very distracting to see Octoroo go from having his tentacles completely covering his face to being parted to reveal his mouth.
- Power Rangers Operation Overdrive has a pretty obvious case during the roll calls, said case being Ronny. They changed her roll call pose from Natsuki's such that the motion is a little more "serious" and stays upright. This is probably due to her personality, which is almost nothing like her Super Sentai counterpart. However, Ronny still finds a way to appear already arched 45 degrees to her left near the end of the roll calls.
- Aljin Abella was the shortest member of the Power Rangers Jungle Fury cast, yet was cast as the Blue Ranger, who was the tallest in Juken Sentai Gekiranger. Theo grew about a foot every time he morphed.
- Related: Zack in Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers grew back a missing finger when he morphed.
- Daggeron from Mystic Force seemed to lose about 40 pounds when he morphed.
- And in similar vein, the characters that weren't adapted to Power Rangers had appeared in it. Eg. Zonnette was seen piloting Divazord, Shibolena was clearly seen when Red Ecliptor was destroyed and some reported that Shelinda was briefly seen on Mutiny's ship.
- Like in Time Force, there's an instance in the second episode of Power Rangers RPM where the city of Corinth is under attack, and for some reason the citizens all appear to be Japanese.
- Power Rangers Megaforce didn't bother translating the Gosei Cards, which say Tensou Sentai Goseiger on them as well as other Sentai terminology. Also, footage from Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger's Legend War sequence is used occasionally, and heroes that were never adapted for Power Rangers can still be seen in crowd shots.
- Super Megaforce managed to turn this into an art form. On top of not explaining why female yellows from the original Saban era have skirts now, since those characters were female, the producers never cared about replacing (at least most the time) stock footage of unadapted Sentai teams present in the Gokaiger stock footage. However, they seem to do it especially selectively, as it appears they wanted to remove pre-mid 80s teams due to the difference in suit materials shifting more to spandex after the first several years. In episode 13, this came as a double whammy, when before a commercial break, we see four of the suits from Changeman, then after the commercial break, Troy's inexplicably the red ranger from Maskman, since they excluded the footage of Marvelous changing to it from the original Gokaiger episode. Then in episode 19, the production team did the unthinkable and had the costume department make new suits of Change Griffon, Green Flash, Blue Mask, and Five Yellow (you can tell because they're made of the exact same material PR's been using for the American suits for years). This particularly egregious because those teams were from unadapted, pre-Zyuranger, Sentai teams & seasons, which was going to be an effect of the stock footage anyways, but also because they actually went out of their way to film new shots of these suits just because they didn't want Vul Eagle in the shots rather than MMPR red, or didn't wanna do the green screen effects required for it. This is a new form of lazy for the entire franchise, as doing this is specifically spending money to film new shots to be lazy and not film more than that, or replace the rest of the scene with different choices of teams, since they were filming new shots anyways.
- In nearly every episode of Power Rangers S.P.D., when the Rangers morph, there will be an extreme close-up of a hand holding the morpher, which would be fine except for the fact that the Rangers never hold the morpher properly (if the finger isn't on the button on top, the morpher shouldn't open!) They're holding it correctly in the morph sequence, so that means the focus Ranger's fingers appear to magically move as we switch to stock footage. This occurs constantly and is probably due to Real Life Writes the Plot: The morpher props are the Japanese morpher toys, so if the actor held the morpher properly, it would open for real. Naturally, non-stock-footage morphs always have the button-push, opening the morpher before the Ranger does a sparkly in-scene change.
- The fight between the Red Ranger and Wrench in the third episode of Power Rangers Dino Charge has a poster with large Japanese writing clearly visible in a few shots.
- Even for a Saban show made in the 90's, VR Troopers has a surprising amount of Stock Footage Failures:
- The footage of Grimlord's palace (and the Metalder footage in general) always looks fuzzier, darker, and more low quality than the rest of the show, making it very obvious when the footage switches from Japanese to American.
- Adapting two different Metal Hero shows meant that JB and Katlin never fight with Ryan when battling a monster (outside of battle grid mode). With 92 total episodes, this becomes more and more obvious through the course of the series, resulting in a very disjointed feel to the action.
- Due to the limited amount of footage of Grimlord's lair, the amount of soldiers visible in any scene usually fluctuates, sometimes Grimlord addressing the four generals and the next shot having the rest of his army suddenly appear.
- In the first season, the goons seen in Grimlord's court were all monsters who'd eventually get to be the monster of an episode. Since stock footage was used for some villains' base scenes, previously defeated monsters were often right there to greet Grimlord as he arrived, just like last week... and some would do battle again, with or without their past demises Handwaved. Many monsters were seen multiple times, with his personal favorites kept into the second season.
- The most egregious example is Air Striker. This helicopter-based monster was sent nearly every episode, destroyed nearly every episode, and always came back for more. Of course, given the fact that they're computer-generated creations, he can simply recreate any monster he likes.
- The air battles footage is even more limited, with virtually the same sequence of slips being used for every battle; if you've seen one, you've seen them all.
- In "The Great Brain Robbery", when Snowbot is attacking Katlyn and JB with his flamethrower and frost gun, another fighter can be seen next to them (which is the third warrior from Jikuu Senshi Spielban, Helen Lady).
- Katlin would later get the ability to create a mirror clone of herself, probably written to prevent any more inconsistencies.
- In "Three Strikes", the look of the apartment rapidly changes between the Japanese and American footage, with the floor and wall changing colors.
- In "Game Over", Despera suddenly becomes a man when fighting Ryan.
- In Masked Rider, the title hero was based on Kamen Rider Black RX, but some scenes taken from Kamen Rider ZO and Kamen Rider J had the suit noticeably change. How? Well, Black RX's suit was mostly green, but had lots of black too. ZO and J's are both entirely green. Noticeably barely begins to cover this.
- Also, due to some crossed wires when editing out Riderman, when the former Riders (Masked Rider Warriors here) introduced themselves, all but ZX gave the wrong names, leading to the fandom's "I AM AMAZON" meme, where "Amazon" was actually Skyrider.
- Even Kamen Rider Dragon Knight isn't completely immune. The differences between Kamen Rider Ryuki's Alternative and Alternative Zero are extremely minor, but they're there. The Advent Master has been known to switch back and forth.
- On The Brady Bunch the parents drove Bobby to an ice cream eating contest. They left in a blue convertible and came back in a brown station wagon. Must've been a slow news week because this managed to get into the National Enquirer.
- Stock Starfury launch footage on Babylon 5 continued to show Sinclair's fighter launching well after he had left the show.
- Possibly justified in that the fighter was one assigned to the station, and would have been left behind when Sinclair transferred out, although its next pilot would presumably have had the chance to paint different nose art on it.
- In the same spirit, a stock CGI model once slipped past them. A shot from the fourth season episode "No Surrender, No Retreat" showed an Earth Alliance warship firing on civilian transports. Since the scene was originally not going to include a closeup of the destroyer, it was given the first set of markings available — those of the "good guy" Agamemnon. Unfortunately, the shot was reframed and the ship's ID was clearly visible in the final version. (This was fixed in later showings; the ship was re-marked as the Pollux.)
- Because a lot of the flight scenes on The Greatest American Hero reused shots from older episodes, Ralph's hair length would sometimes inexplicably change when he started flying.
- Retroactive example on Red Dwarf. When the ship returns in Series VIII, it has a different design which is alluded to by the characters. The brief appearance at the end of Series VII (a few seconds of ship footage from which were repeated in Series VIII) used stock footage of the model ship that was filmed during series 1 and 2.
Kryten: I can't tell you how feeble and improbable those creatures were, sir. I've seen more convincing dinosaurs given away free with a packet of Wheaty Flakes.
- In Meltdown, footage from Gappa, The Colossal Beast is used to represent waxwork dinosaurs, which prompts:
- Doctor Who has a great deal of this to go with its legendary low budgets and Special Effects Failure:
- In "The Dalek Invasion of Earth", an alligator menacing Susan is represented by stock footage of a rather small and ineffectual-looking gavial.
- In "The Romans", Ian is taken to fight in the arena, and peers out of the bars of his cell to see what it is he's going to fight. What follows is a poorly-edited sequence of lots of different lions in clearly very different zoos, none of which look remotely Roman.
- Happens in-universe in "The Space Museum", when the Doctor is hooked up to a mind-reading machine so his captor can find out where his companions are using pictures extracted from his memory. The footage extracted this way is useless because it shows where the companions were when he left them a long while ago, not where they are now. By this time, he's figured out a Psychic Block Defense and so, when pressed harder, the screen starts producing deliberately ridiculous stock footage of sea lions, etcetera.
- Originally, "The Time Meddler" included a very poor quality looking shot of the viking ship approaching. The restoration team used a new scan of the stock footage for the DVD, but found that (by going from a multi-generational 16mm TV recording to a 35mm newsreel extract) the restored stock footage looked too high quality. In the end, artificial grain and softness was added to make the stock footage look like the rest of the episode.
- Subverted in "The Ark", which starts with a bunch of shots of live animals framed and filmed in a way to resemble stock footage, having Dodo point out an elephant by cutting between a shot of the elephant alone in the frame and Dodo looking at it from the reverse angle... and then walking forward, into the frame with the elephant and touching it.
- In "The War Machines", WOTAN orders his slaves to make a machine. Splice in stock footage of welders, in completely different lighting, and who (even with the masks on) look absolutely nothing like the slaves.
- Subverted in "Doctor Who and the Silurians". We're shown footage of a helicopter which cuts back to soldiers travelling about on the hills. Obvious stock footage... until we cut back to the helicopter and we realise it has UNIT written on the side. And then it swerves past the hillside, appearing in the same shot with an actor, as if to say 'ha, look, we CAN afford it'.
- In the 1970s Doctor Who serial "Revenge of the Cybermen", the launch of a missile on an alien planet is represented by stock footage of a NASA rocket launch, with the rocket's official markings in English clearly visible.
- This case became far more amusing a decade later, in that it's the same stock footage that early MTV used in its hourly station identification clips, which video-loving American viewers of a certain age have seen hundreds if not thousands of times.
- ""The Name of the Doctor"" cuts between stock footage of the Second Doctor and scenes of him recorded with a double from behind. The double doesn't even try to match his movement to the stock footage, especially with the distinctive running style of the character in the footage.
- "The Day of the Doctor":
- The Seventh Doctor changes outfits between shots.
- The Fifth Doctor's hair changes completely in colour, texture and style from the behind shot and the face shot (which had his face pasted onto the body of a double, covering up the ridiculously unconvincing wig).
- Parodied on The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot in which Tom Baker is portrayed entirely with stock footage from the unfinished serial "Shada" (the exact same clips used to Fake Shemp him into "The Five Doctors"). Since he's in-character as the Doctor in the footage, which shows him at about half his current age, the result is hilariously nonsensical.
- Star Trek: The Original Series uses the same shuttlecraft footage every time. This is most egregious in "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield", when the shuttlecraft stolen from a Starbase bears the ID number "1701/7". That is, rather than coming from a Starbase, it is a shuttlecraft of NCC 1701, the Enterprise itself! Either that, or 'every' Federation shuttlecraft is the Galileo.
- Star Trek: Deep Space Nine uses this on occasion during the Dominion War arc, being cheaper to reuse old battle footage than produce new footage for each battle. However, after the USS Defiant is destroyed and replaced near the end of the series, the new Defiant sports the previous ship's registry number.
- A common situation on I Dream of Jeannie, where the rocket shown on the pad would be different from the rocket later shown lifting off, which was not the same as the rocket seen in the sky. None of the three would match the capsule shown in orbit.
- The Time Tunnel episode "One Way to the Moon" mixed shots of a real Atlas rocket with scenes lifted from Destination Moon. It didn't even fool a seven-year-old in 1966.
- How I Met Your Mother: A brief Establishing Shot in the Season 6 episode "Baby Talk" ostensibly shows Marshall's old high school in Minnesota, but the flag flying outside is clearly Quebec's.
- Conan O'Brien parodies and lampshades this frequently, especially in the Conando segments.
- An episode of Knight Rider featured KITT's Evil Twin KARR being forced off a cliff; the footage used for this was lifted from the 1977 Horror film The Car featuring a vehicle which does not even begin to resemble a Trans Am. At least it was black...
- The show also tended to reuse footage from previous episodes in places that didn't make much sense. In the same episode with KARR, a shot that was supposed to show KARR breaking into some building is obviously KITT with silver star decals from a previous episode stuck on him.
- In the episode of Dark Matters: Twisted But True about Dr. James Van Allen, the Stock Footage shot of a rocket launch used to represent the Starfish Prime exoatmospheric nuclear test is accompanied by audio (overlapped by the narrator's dialogue, yet still quite coherent) that mentions the International Space Station. Starfish Prime took place in 1962; the first component of the ISS went into orbit in 1998.
- Serenity is classified as a 03-K64-Firefly in the first aired episode ("The Train Job"), but some shots in the original pilot episode ("Serenity") of the ship in the black are of the newer 03-KC11-Firefly. It is not known how Joss Whedon obtained those shots.
- The Baywatch episode "Lover's Cover" reused footage of a car plunging into the ocean from the Season 2 episode "If Looks Could Kill." The original episode was about a murderer who had a dead guy in her backseat, which means the wrapped up corpse is consequently visible in the "Lover's Cove" scene that contains the recycled shots.
- Buck Rogers in the 25th Century has a particularly noticeable example whenever fighter craft are shown coming into the landing bays on Earth. The series only has two stock-footage shots; one of a single fighter landing, and one of two fighters side-by-side escorting Buck's 20th-century space shuttle (from the pilot episode). Whenever more than one fighter craft is supposed to be landing, they try to cut away from the latter shot before Buck's shuttle is clearly recognizeable on-screen, but don't always succeed.
- Battlestar Galactica (1978) was bad about this as well. There are 4 shots of Galactica's guns destroying Cylons, about 6 shots of Vipers destroying Cylons, and about 4 shots of Cylons destroying Vipers. This includes the mirror image shots. No wonder Cylons die so easily. They always attack the exact same way. It is blatantly noticeable in same fight scenes in the same episodes.
- The Swamp Fox had a huge problem with this. It was often very obvious they were re-using horseback chase scenes from earlier episodes.
- A Running Gag in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air has Jazz getting thrown out of the house. The footage of the act in question is always the same, but they've avoided this trope by having Jazz wear the same shirt in scenes where he's about to get thrown out.
- Fans of Space: 1999 were no doubt left puzzled as to why a future earth city shown in an episode of Wonder Woman looked like Moonbase Alpha, due to the US show borrowing an establishing shot from the then-still-recent UK-made series. Counts as a fail because in 1977-78, when the episode in question aired, Space: 1999 was still in wide syndication and still a current series.
- The HBO film Tuskegee Airmen used actual WWII footage filmed from dogfights to represent the characters' own. This wouldn't be so bad, except the footage isn't meant to represent a filmed engagement but a live occurring one, and since WWII film quality wasn't exactly the greatest, the outside cuts and windshield shots of dogfights look unbelievably grainy.
- Saturday Night Live has a potentially invoked example regarding their "The Rock Obama" sketches. When Barack Obama Hulks out into The Rock, the Transformation Sequence shows his shirt and his shoes tearing open. However, later sketches show The Rock Obama wearing a torn shirt, but seemingly un-torn shoes. After Jay Pharaoh replaced Fred Armisen in the role of Barack, the sketches also have him wear a dress jacket that disappears when the transformation begins.
- Frequently parodied in All Aussie Adventures. Most obviously, there's a Running Gag where Russell goes to shake someone's hand, and they cut to a closeup of two obviously different hands shaking. There are also numerous driving shots that were obviously filmed in a different state to the rest of the episode.
- The series Arthur C. Clarke's Mysterious World misused film of a Gemini/Titan space launch in a story on an unmanned Mariner mission to Mars.
- Jon Stewart once called out The Sean Hannity Show on a story they did about an anti-healthcare-reform rally in Washington. The rally took place in the fall, when the surrounding trees were full of orange and red leaves, but some of the footage showed that the trees were fully green. What had actually happened was that they mixed in footage from a much larger, totally unrelated rally from months before to make the present rally look bigger (it was even reported that there were four times as many attendees than there actually were). This actually prompted an apology from Hannity for falsifying the story.
- Many a space documentary uses the footage shot during an unmanned early Gemini mission when talking about re-entry, however, when they're using it while talking about something like the Apollo missions, it's extremely noticeable.
- The animated cutscenes of the Philips CD-i game Mutant Rampage Body Slam frequently reuse the same animations of the host character and the champion he interviews. This results in bad lip-synch and odd moments, such as the host saying "All right!" in a enthusiastic voice while facepalming.
- If you use the Satellite Cannon attack on the scenarios where Tifa is kidnapped in Super Robot Wars Alpha Gaiden, her picture and voice still appears.
- The ending credits of Until Dawn will show all the death scenes that the player viewed as a montage at the end... except that the player may notice some details are off, such as bruises and the background.
- Chris can die many ways ...except not really. Almost all of Chris's death scenes are the same footage with different backgrounds. He can get decapitated at the lodge, in the forest, in the mines, but if you removed the background it would basically be impossible to tell the difference between the scenes.
- Just about any Filmation production, due to their over dependence on stock footage, but especially He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983) and She-Ra: Princess of Power.
- The scanner sequence on Code Lyoko always uses the characters' normal outfits, even when they're wearing something else.
- An episode from Season 4 has Ulrich and Odd heading for the scanners in the factory; they enter with the Season 1-3 outfits and shots of them in the scanners are the Season 4 outfits. This is more egregious as the latter outfits weren't introduced until the next episode. Whoops.
- There is an episode of Danger Mouse in which Penfold is kidnapped, but they still used the stock footage of DM pulling his car out of the garage with Penfold in the passenger seat.
- Super Friends (1973) episode "The Androids". Superman has been kidnapped and replaced by an android. After the rest of the Super Friends figures it out the android Superman takes off, but seconds later the Stock Footage shows him still sitting at the table. Watch it here, starting at 4:00, and watch until around 5:00.
- The "hero up!" sequence of The Super Hero Squad Show uses Green Hulk even when Hulk is in Grey Hulk mode.
- Taken Up to Eleven in Spider-Man: The Animated Series. At first it was reused webswinging footage, or it was applicable as a flashback. In the later seasons, everytime Spidey faced Doctor Octopus or the Lizard, the same footage from the villains' first appearances would be thrown in.
- Also, there'd be the times the Green Goblin would switch between his first glider and his second (much bigger, very different) one from one shot to the next. (Yes, the gliders can separate and link up. No, this is not that.)
- Even worse in the 1990s Iron Man cartoon. During its first season, Tony Stark would change into his Iron Man suit once per episode and we were treated to a crudely done CGI sequence of this. Problem, they only made one animation of this sequence, and Tony would suddenly be in a lab (when he had previously been in space, the desert, in a forest, etc.) and in the same clothes he wore in the first ep.
- There is an episode of The Magic School Bus where the kids travel inside of Arnold to learn about the human digestive system. In one of the scenes during the episode, Arnold can seen sitting in the bus with the rest of the kids.
- Parodied in The Simpsons:
Editor: Seamless, huh?
- "Radioactive Man": In an attempt to save the production of the Radioactive Man movie, an editor provides a clip where Radioactive Man and Fallout Boy are stuck in a cave with The Road Warrior types. Shots of Fallout Boy in a grassy field and on a couch were inserted into the scene, then they end up fighting aliens.
Assistant: You're fired.
Editor: And with good cause!
- In "Homer the Whopper", the movie's producers were forced to reuse some clips from earlier in the movie in the final fight. Problem was, in half of them Homer was fit and muscular, and in the other half he was his normal overweight self. This lead to a scene where he was jumping off a beam to attack a villain where he was fit one moment, fat the next, and at one point, while he was eating a sandwich. Lenny walks out of the theatre saying that the inconsistencies took him out of the moment and ruined the experience.
- Towards the end of Felix the Cat: The Movie, stock footage of Princess Orianna getting captured from the beginning of the film is used near the end of the film; the animators didn't even bother to change the background.
- Team America: World Police features the song "Freedom isn't Free" accompanied by footage of Gary visiting American memorials. Except there are normal people walking in background - in a puppet film. Considering the film is full of Stylistic Suck, this was most likely intentional.
- In the late 1980s and early 1990s a TV cartoon series was made in Flanders, based on the popular comic Suske en Wiske. While the designs of the character resembled those in the comics the cartoons themselves were so cheaply made that almost every scene was stock footage. For instance, whenever a specific character was walking from one point to another, they always played the same clip. The animators also animated only one expression of a certain emotion for each main cast member. If for instance a specific character became angry, it was always the same scene without any sort of variation. As one can imagine, watching these cartoons can become rather tedious after a while, especially since they follow the stories of the comic book albums almost frame-by-frame in extremely slow pacing.
- To see just how little the Warner Brothers animation studio cared by this time, witness the double use of a clip of Daffy walking to a window in See Ya Later, Gladiator - he was in a different building both times - and neither one looked at all alike (one was a science lab, the other was his house).
- Thunder Cats had this in chapter 62. One night, Lion-O, Wilykat and Wilykit infiltrate Castle Plun-Darr, then they're ambushed by the Mutants, but the heroes fight back and Lion-O jumps, evading all of Slithe's beam shots and lands just in front of him and then you see it: Lion-O funnily smirking, with a background of a grassy field surrounded by a forest, on daylight. Then, they're back inside the castle. Watch it here, at 4:19.