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Critical Research Failure

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Even (most) first graders know this one.

"The London 2012 opening ceremony is going to be called Isles of Wonder, but there can be no wonderment more wonderful than the fact that Olympics organizers wanted Keith Moon to perform. Moon has been dead for 34 years."

This is a particular instance where a story or character features something — a statement, the depiction of something — that is so egregiously off-the-scale in terms of inaccuracy that anyone with a high-school education (or less) and/or a cursory knowledge of the subject realizes the writers made the whole thing up.

Many of these will be disaster movies or action movies and will use state-of-the-art computer effects to keep your interest. This can be Played for Laughs by having a Book Dumb character make such an error so that a smarter character can spot and react to it.

Also see Didn't Think This Through, which is less about research failure and more about planning failure. Contrast with the MST3K Mantra, which tells us not to worry about these little details; Accidentally Correct Writing, which is when non-experts think the creators are wrong, but experts know the creators are right by complete accident; and Like Reality Unless Noted, where what appears to be a research failure can be written off as the result of an Alternate History or Alternate Universe.


For examples of research errors regarding media, see Cowboy BeBop at His Computer. See also Dan Browned, for situations when an author falsely claims he did the research. For downplayed inaccuracies that require more in-depth knowledge to notice, see Artistic License and its subpages. If it's specifically math that is off, see Writers Cannot Do Math.

Unintentional Examples

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  • A commercial for Oscar Meyer Franks has a father come home and see his three kids on those electronic gizmos kids use these days. Wanting to spend quality family time, he trips the circuit breaker of his house, knocking the power out and shutting off the older brother's computer, the younger brother's game console, and the sister's cell phone.
  • Mitsubishi once ran an ad for the Eclipse, discussing mankind's desire to harness the awesome power of an eclipse, and showed a literal one, suggesting the ad agency had no idea that an eclipse was just the moon briefly blocking direct view of the sun.

    Anime & Manga 
  • One scene in Baki the Grappler involved a character who blinded people by pulling out their optic nerves... by sticking a finger into the side of his opponent's neck and pulling said nerve out. The optic nerve, which connects the eye and brain via a hole through the eye socket, has absolutely no business being there.
  • A Lupin III episode had a sign marking the Kansas/Washington D.C. border. Was it that hard for the writers to get a map of the United States?
  • Generally, Detective Conan avoids these issues by Aoyama doing research, off and on there are instances where the reasoning for even simple things in the series just don't make sense. One instance is when Ludger, a German character, appears and he speaks near-perfect Japanese. Conan deduces that his wife is British because Ludger referred to the restaurant being on the 2nd Floor, when it would be the 3rd Floor in Japanese, and that this is because the British refer to the 1st Floor of a building as the Ground Floor and then begin to count number-wise upward. The problem? Germans do that, too, so his reasoning is faulty since Ludger, being German, automatically counts floors in the German fashion, making Conan's elaborate reason why his wife must be British obsolete.
  • Code Geass loves its chess metaphors and concepts. Lelouch is also an avid chess player throughout the series, which he displays in his strategies. However, he always plays by moving his king first, because he believes the king should lead by example. In chess, it is not possible to move the king on its first turn; it only can move one space in any direction, and is blocked in by its own pieces. It's also an extremely risky way to play chess in general. Also in the second season, Schneizel (who is supposed to be an even more awesome chess player than Lelouch), stalemates Lelouch by moving his own king into check, which is a completely illegal move, as any chess player knows.
  • Black Butler subverts this trope at the beginning of episode 4. The episode starts out with Sebastian and Madame Red playing chess, and he stalemates Madame Red by moving his own king into check, which is a completely illegal move, as any chess player knows. In response, Madame Red angrily (and correctly) yells to Sebastian that he just made an illegal move. In turn, Ciel poetically states that many people make this move in real life, as no matter how prepared a king is, unfortunate circumstances can allow even a pawn to strike him down.
    • He is, of course, referring to the person who started the fire that killed his parents.
  • Black Jack:
    • If you didn't know Osamu Tezuka was a certified M.D before he was a mangaka, you'd think he was this. As it is, the official translation actually has footnotes explaining the discrepancies between the manga and real life, with some being honest mistakes like claiming that dingoes are descendants of dogs brought to Australia by Europeans when in fact they were already present before colonization, which is a mistake anyone could make at first. Blatant errors in medical knowledge, are actually embellishments done on purpose for Rule of Fun and Rule of Cool, and a situation where a woman gets her ovaries removed and later on appears as a man is a case of cross-dressing, which was been mistaken for a literal Gender Bender due to the use of phrases like not being able live like a woman anymore used in dialog, making this a case where the readers, reviewers and critics are the ones that committed the failure in research, because a medical doctor like Tezuka would know that getting their ovaries removed wouldn't cause a woman to become a man.
  • Yoshiyuki Tomino named the fascist adversaries of Mobile Suit Gundam after the Nazi-like faction in the original Star Trek episode "Patterns of Force". He apparently didn't go back and watch the episode when he made this decision, because in that episode Zeon were the people being oppressed, and the pseudo-Nazis were actually called Ekos.
  • Pokémon, when compared to the games:
    • Electric-types used to damage Ground-types in the past, which is a No-Sell fact in the games. Ironically, once Pikachu damaged a Rhydon with Thunderbolt by striking its horn, later on when abilities were introduced said horn turned into the Lightning Rod ability for the Rhyhorn line, which draws and nullifies all Electric attacks.
    • Several attacks that shouldn't affect Ghost-types still affect them anyway. This is more of a random occurrence. The inverse has also been falsely claimed as true, especially for physical moves.
    • Ash's Sliggoo evolved during its own Rain Dance. In the games, this is impossible to do, as the rain has to be natural rain that isn't started by Rain Dance.
    • At least in the dub, Lillie erroneously refers to the item Potion as "Lotion."
    • Brock once claimed that Water-types are weak against Fire-types. Besides not making sense, anyone who's played one of the game for even a few minutes knows it's the reverse.
  • A Wind Named Amnesia: In the film, Little John is seen with an LAPD Sheriff badge. However, the LAPD (Los Angeles Police Department) has no Sheriff, they have a Chief of Police. The Sheriff is part of the LASD (Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department).
  • Lord Marksman and Vanadis: In one episode of the anime, Tigre dry fires a bow (pulls the string and lets go without an arrow). Any self respecting archer, especially an archery nut like Tigre, should know that you should never dry fire a bow, as without an arrow to absorb the energy, the bow could crack apart.
  • In one episode of Sailor Moon, the Dark Kingdom tries to find Sailor Moon by installing hair steamers with DNA scanners. The scanner picks up on the one strand of Usagi's hair in Minako's hair (via transferrance from her brush) leading the youma there attacking her. The problem with that is hair contains no DNA; hair follicles do, but the likelihood of Minako pulling a follicle out simply by brushing Usagi's hair is unlikely.

    Comic Books 
  • Marville:
    • It begins a descent into utter madness note  starting in the third issue that includes, among many, MANY other offenses, the protagonists scooping up some water with microbes in it to use as a "biological clock" for their time machine, under the logic that they'll know to stop when the microbes evolve into a dinosaur. It just gets worse from there.
    • It also contains the popular misconception that shows up a few times below that humans are the only creatures who kill members of their own species. Nearly all species do it, however humans are (so far) the only species that feel good or bad about it.
  • Superman once multiplied 10x20x16 and got 32,000. (It's 3,200, by the way.) That wasn't just math, it was Super Mathematics.
  • The original authors of W.I.T.C.H. intended to set the series somewhere in America. This is obvious to an Italian, but they didn't bother to check on what an American city actually looks like, resulting in Americans and non-Europeans in general to wonder in which European country Heatherfield is. Averted by the cartoon version: in spite of being made in France, the staff of the animated series did do the research, and Heatherfield is recognizable as an American town.
  • Chuck Austen's X-Men story "Holy War" — Where the hell to begin?!?
    • The plot hinges on exploding Communion hosts dissolving people, making everyone think that The Rapture had come, while simultaneously unmasking Nightcrawler, who would be made Pope, somehow, in his usual demonic-looking form, thereby destroying Catholicism. Yeah. There are a few, slight flaws in Austen's plot...
    • Even basic information about the characters was wrong. Nightcrawler's narration states that Wolverine has 100 inch claws. Wolvie's claws are 12 inches. 100 inches is 8 feet and 4 inches, while Wolvie himself is only 5'3".
  • In the debut of the New Mutants, we are introduced to Roberto da Costa aka Sunspot. He is Brazilian, living in Brazil, where Portuguese is the common language. Everyone was speaking Spanish.
  • The Daughters of the Amazon featured early in Y: The Last Man cut off their left breast and use bows to emulate mythological Amazons. Cutting off the left breast does nothing to make drawing a bow easier for right-handed archers, as the characters should have realized immediately on trying it. This is exacerbated by the fact that "Amazons cutting their breasts to use a bow" isn't an actual part of the myths, and it's merely speculation made because of faulty translation, which actual research into Amazon myths would have shown.
    • The nature of the plague itself is also a problem. In the comic, every male on earth dies during a brief phone call. While the nature of the plague itself is left deliberately vague, the fact that it killed globally, quickly, and evenly means it can't possibly be a disease, since a disease presents symptoms regardless of number or rate of infection. Even if women were immune carriers, it would be impossible for the first male infected to drop dead the same moment as the last one.
  • This page from Tseu Hi, La Dame Dragon shows the "Palace Museum" tablet on the Forbidden City, even though the comic took place in the Qing dynasty, long before the Forbidden City became a museum.
  • IDW's The Transformers (IDW) special Continuum is meant to be a comprehensive explanation of the characters and timeline. However, it's littered with numerous errors of events, names and backgrounds. Given one of the authors just happens to have been the editor of the book, it becomes even worse as a resource.
  • In Preacher, Amy, who is unlucky with love, meets a man who seems perfect for her, only to discover he has been chemically castrated (after being confused with a serial child molester) and therefore can't be with her. The comic acts as if chemical castration is some type of permanent destruction of the genitals, when in reality, it's simply taking medicine that turns off a person's sex drive and can be easily reversed by going off the medication.

    Comic Strips 
  • One The Far Side cartoon caught fire for its inaccurate depiction of mosquitoes. In the cartoon, the hardworking (mosquito) husband comes home after a long day at work and comments to his homemaker (mosquito) wife how he 'must have spread malaria all over the country'. The problem is that only the females suck blood and spread malaria. However, the comic depends on the depiction of stereotypical suburbia, so swapping the genders around wouldn't have worked either.
    • Gary Larson's visual depictions of historic figures or celebrities are often so strikingly off the only explanation is he could not be bothered to even glance at a photo or paining of them for reference before drawing. A cartoon depicting Albert Einstein playing basketball as a young man, for instance, portrays the famously bushy-haired scientist as balding, while one depicting "Henry VIII on the dating scene" depicted the king, who is probably one of the most visually recognizable monarchs in British history, as a generic, bald cartoon king with a crown and robe but no hair or beard (a simple beard was later sketched in for some later reprintings).

    Fan Works 
  • Dumbledore's Army and the Year of Darkness: If Thanfiction knew enough about Demiguises to include them in DAYD, he should have known enough about them to not portray them as invisible goats when they're invisible apes.
  • Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality's author usually makes sure to research the topic he investigates, and it shows. However, this trope is played very straight when discussing the Stanford Prison Experiment, which the characters apparently take at face value. In real life, the experiment was a complete disgrace and is often held up as a textbook example of what not to do when performing scientific research; and what's more, 11-year-old prodigy Harry, being in this universe both well versed in science and obsessed with doing research, should absolutely know that. To make it worse, Harry's summary is almost completely accurate and includes most of the biggest problems (the experimental group was non-random, the experimenter was an active participant, the experiment was ended early to impress his girlfriend…), he simply doesn't recognize them as the massive flaws they are.
  • In Ace Attorney fanfic Her Life Or Mine at one point relationship between Phoenix and Iris is pointed out as it could hurt his case since he'll be biased. Considering that Phoenix is defending Iris, being on her side is exactly what he's supposed to do! Considering that Phoenix canonically defends his friends all the timenote  there is no excuse for that.
  • In Moon Daughter, the author classifies dryads and satyrs as monsters. Also, Flavia claims that Percy Jackson killed Luke.
  • In Saki After Story, the mahjong games in the tournament are presented as one-on-one, rather than four-player games, and the tournament takes place over the course of a single day, unlike canon, where it takes over a week to complete. Additionally, the last match of the tournament is Saki against Teru, while in canon, Saki is the captain and Teru is the vanguard, meaning that Teru would face Yuuki, while Saki would face Awai.
  • The author of RWBY fic She couldn't understand admits to never having watched the series. And it shows.
    Fic!Blake: [To Adam, a mass murderer of civilians in canon] I've always been selfish, while you're selfless.
  • From a Supernatural fanfic: "At the next intersection, Dean turns left, heading south into the setting sun." (This would only work if he were driving right on top of the north pole.)
  • The Star Trek: Voyager fan-fic The Mysterious Case of Neelix's Lungs is being written by two people who admit that they have not actually seen the show in full, and thus is full of mistakes. Which would be perfectly excusable for an average fanfic, except that these two are presenting it as a "fixer fic" for the show. As a result, half the "flaws" they're trying to rescue the show from are things that were already fixed onscreen when it grew the beard, while others are just blown out of proportion. Said flaws are "discussed" in author's notes that rant against the show and certain characters, getting facts blatantly wrong. To add the final dose of irony, the authors have been enthusiastically trying to promote their "fixer fic" on various websites, and seem to respond to constructive criticism like they think it's fan mail.

    Films — Animation 
  • The Emoji Movie':
    • The phone would not have been deleted, but given a factory reset.
    • Most phones do not have "firewalls" in the traditional sense.
    • Trolls aren't malware like viruses or Trojan Horses. They're actual people. You would think that Sony would know this after having to deal with them on films like Ghostbusters (2016).
    • A factory reset can be performed by the user, using the phone itself, and it doesn't need to be taken to a repair shop for that to be done.
    • An emoji has no code; it's an image (which is internally stored as a Unicode character), therefore, it can't be reprogrammed. What can be reprogrammed is the code that puts the emojis in a text, but even then, it's already in the phone and there's no need to go to the cloud to change any code. In fact, the cloud wouldn't be housing any sort of code necessary for the use of emojis, as they already come pre-installed in phones as Unicode characters.
    • Guessing random words until you get the correct password is not a form of hacking. You’d think that Sony would know this after their infamous hack.
  • An American Tail has Tiger, the vegetarian cat. Cats are obligate carnivores, unable to survive without meat proteins. (Though he does mention that he has a little fish now and then.)

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Near the end of Alvin and the Chipmunks Road Chip, Simon claims that there's no such thing as 1000%. As any child whose passed 5th grade math could tell you, percentage is a numerator built on relative quantity. Claiming that 1000% doesn't exist is roughly equivalent to saying the number ten doesn't exist. It was a clumsy way of stating something that is true; there cannot be more than 100% of something where 100% is defined as the limit of that thing. For example, you cannot give more than 100% of your time. But you could give someone more than 100% of the amount of money that is in your wallet, by using a credit card.
  • Alice in Wonderland (2010) claims the poem Jabberwocky is in reference to Alice when the poem clearly refers to a boy slaying the monster, calls the creature "Jabberwocky" instead of the name "Jabberwock" that it goes by in the poem, the monster's design is closer to a traditional dragon than a strange monster with dragon-like features, and the vorpal sword is given no visual feature to distinguish it from a regular sword.
  • The Amazing Colossal Man features a scientist who claims that "the heart is made up of a single cell."note 
  • In Avengers: Age of Ultron, it's a huge plot point that Ultron is prevented from hacking into the "Nexus Internet Hub" in Norway and gaining access to nuclear codes. There are two major problems here:
    • Not only does the Nexus Internet Hub not exist in real life, but the entire point of the Internet is not relying on a central hub. It was originally created by the US government wanting to connect its defense systems in such a way that the network would still function if one or more points were destroyed. Even after the Internet went public and international in the 90's, it retains this fundamental aspect.
    • No country keeps its nuclear codes online. In the United States, the codes are printed on hard copy and have to be spoken by the president over a secured phone line. The system has more or less stayed the same since the 1940's to avoid the exact problems this movie spells out (not necessarily a killer robot, but keeping the codes from falling into the hands of a malicious hacker).
  • In Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Batman frequently commits murder with firearms without showing any major signs of guilt. To justify this incarnation of Batman's use of guns, Zack Snyder claimed in an interview that the Dark Knight Returns incarnation of Batman "kills all the time" and stole a criminal's machine gun before he "shoots the guy right between the eyes with the machine gun". However, as the interview's comments section makes clear, this never happens in the comic: Batman takes a mutant's gun, and shoots the wall next to another mutant so that she gives up a baby. Neither mutant is killed, as shown here and here. The same mutant shows up perfectly alive later on to confirm that Batman did not shoot her. Furthermore, The Dark Knight Returns incarnation of Batman blatantly Doesn't Like Guns, and it is repeated several times in the graphic novel that no matter what happens to him, Batman cannot be pushed into killing.
  • The tagline of the film Biggles is "Meet Jim Ferguson. He lived a daring double-life with one foot in the 20th century and the other in World War I." World War I happened in the 20th century.
  • The writer of Courage Under Fire admits that when he wrote the script, which involves a female military officer who died in the first Gulf War becoming "the first female Medal of Honor recipient", he didn't even bother to check whether or not there already was a woman who had that honor. Turns out that Dr. Mary Edwards Walker, a US Army doctor, won the award during the Civil War, some 130+ years before Courage Under Fire was set, when she refused to leave patients she was treating despite the fact that her field hospital was being actively shelled by the Confederate army. What makes this worst is that there were two things that would have avoided this from becoming an example: A) The Medal of Honor received by Walker was not for bravery in actual combat while Walden (the officer in Courage Under Fire) does receive it for bravery in combat. As of 2016 no woman has ever received the Medal of Honor for actual combat against an enemy, so Walden would still be unprecedented; and B) Walker was a civilian employed by the Army as a surgeon, but in documents it was considered the equivalent of a commissioned captain, so Walden would also be the first woman to actually serve in uniform and receive the medal. Have they added any one of those notes, and it would have been a whole different case.
  • A View to a Kill:
    • James Bond is presented with the Soviet Order of Lenin and described as the first foreign recipient of the USSR's highest decoration, when Italian communist politician Luigi Longo received it many, many years earlier.
    • Roger Ebert pointed out that the villain's evil scheme makes no sense if you have any knowledge of computer manufacturing. Zorin's plan is to corner the market on microchips by destroying Silicon Valley, which would wipe out his competitors. In reality, this would do very little to affect Zorin's market share, since microchips aren't usually manufactured in Silicon Valley. If he wanted to destroy his competitors, he would have had to attack factories overseas somewhere like China. Also, given that many of the tech firms in Silicon Valley produce devices that require microchips, Zorin would essentially be taking out a huge chunk of his own customers.
  • The MST3K-featured film Devil Fish has a rather infuriating example when a character who is supposed to be an expert is playing a slideshow of prehistoric marine life—mostly animals contemporaneous to, or even predating, the dinosaurs. We're then told they lived in the "Cetaceous" period (pronounced like 'cetacean'), which was two hundred years ago—not two hundred million, two hundred.
  • A major part of the criticism for God's Not Dead and it sequels is the slews of major mistakes made by the filmmakers.
    • All three films have constant statements on how "atheists hate God." This ignores the quite obvious issue that it would be pretty hard to hate something you don't even believe exists. Such an attitude actually belongs to misotheism.
    • The entire plot of the first film is that an Intro to Philosophy teacher demands a student proclaim there is no God. When the student refuses, the teacher basically tries to ruin his life. First, no modern-day college would allow a student to be persecuted by a teacher for his beliefs under any circumstances. Second, the idea that a minor philosophy professor is somehow a major influence in college is laughable. Third is that no self-respecting philosophy professor would force his students to accept a view without question as that would defeat the point of philosophy.
    • A Chinese student calls his father, one speaking Mandarin and the other Cantonese. The film treats it like all Chinese dialects are the same but any Chinese person can attest that it's like speaking two totally different languages. Not to mention how bizarre it would be for a father and son to speak two different dialects.
    • The father claims that his son becoming Christian will hurt the chances to bring his brother to America. Ignoring how that makes little sense, China happens to have a one-child policy, meaning it's unlikely the boy would have a brother.
    • Ayisha's father is a "conservative" Muslim who makes her wear a Naqib...while allowing her to wear skirts and shirts that show off cleavage.
    • The classes take place over four straight days whereas most major colleges would have them every other day.
    • The credits list a set of cases meant to prove the movie's point of Christians being persecuted. Instead, many of the cases have nothing to do with religious issues but political ones and, in fact, many involve Christians persecuting LGBT people.
    • The sequel has a Christian teacher being pushed to be fired and then sued just for mentioning Jesus in school. This would be perfectly legal and only an issue if she was trying to indoctrinate the students into a religion.
    • The film perpetuates the myth that children are not allowed to pray in school, which is a total falsehood. In fact, it's considered illegal for a teacher to stop a child from doing it. There's also a statement of it being illegal to pray in any school, ignoring how there are slews of private schools where it's allowed.
    • The ACLU is shown as an evil organization that's out to destroy Christians. This ignores how quite often, they've defended Christians as their mission is to protect all beliefs. They only get on the bad side of Christians when those groups insist on pushing their beliefs on others so much.
    • Claire is appointed a public defender...for a civil law case. In fact, there's a plot about the jury used for the trial, ignoring how a case like this would be in federal court instead where there is no jury. Indeed, many of the legal terms thrown about are more for a criminal case. They never even make it clear what Claire is being sued for.
    • One character claims that the way our calendar counts from the approximate birth time of Jesus as proof of his existence. However, the anno domini (A.D.) way of counting years in the calendar wasn't invented until the 6th century by Dionysus Exiguus, a monk living in the Eastern Roman Empire, long after Christianity had been adopted as an official religion by the Roman and Byzantine empires. Historians believe Jesus was born between 4 BC (Herod's death) and 7 AD (Quirinius' census), based on the stories of his birth in the Gospels.note This has been used as an argument against Jesus existing, since they can't agree on when he was born. Most historians do think he existed, but do not take any position about the divine nature Christians proclaim he had.
    • A somewhat troubling aspect is the movie seeming to argue that the First Amendment only pertains to Christians rather than be the free speech of everyone. There's also how it shows the government arresting preachers for not showing their sermons, which is blatantly illegal. To hear the movie tell it, separation of church and state is non-existent and the U.S. government is like a Middle Eastern nation able to throw people in jail just for being Christian. Not only is that totally inaccurate but some might argue it's the opposite in real life with Christians demanding the government put their beliefs first.
    • While the third film tones down the propaganda aspects, it still makes a key problem with its plot. The idea is that when a church on the grounds of a college burns down, the college attempts to use eminent domain to seize it and tear it down. Only a city or state government would have that power, not a school. Plus, it was on their grounds to begin with, meaning they technically already owned the building and thus no need to "seize" it.
  • Die Hard 2:
    • If you have even a cursory knowledge of airports, the entire plot will fall flat on its face. It relies on the whole cast not knowing that all of those airliners flying around without a working runway can just fly to another airport. The movie tries to explain this by saying that the nearest other airport is shut down because of the snowstorm, but if those airliners are carrying enough fuel to circle the sky for two hours, they can just fly to an airport further away. For reference, the film takes place in Washington, D.C., which has two nearby airports that are actually mentioned in the film: Dulles International (the target of the terrorist plot) and Reagan National (the one that's shut down). With the Mid-Atlantic United States being the most densely-populated region in the country, there are at least a dozen major airports within 300 miles of DC that an airplane can reach in two hours with fuel to spare (Baltimore International, for instance, which isn't that much further away from Dulles than Reagan), not counting the various military bases that would receive commercial airliners in the event of an emergency.
    • It also features a scene where the hero claims that the criminals were carrying "Glock 7" handguns that are invisible to airport scanners because they are made of porcelain rather than metal. Even accepting this ludicrous premise (a real Glock is about 87% steel in reality and cannot get through an X-ray or metal detector, and the action of firing a bullet creates too much pressure for the barrel or chamber, even of a handgun, to be made of anything but metal), anyone would know that bullets are also made of metals such as lead (there's a reason the phrase "Eat lead!" refers to bullets), and would thus set off metal detectors regardless of what the gun carrying them is made of. This is also ignoring that airport scanners don't just look for metal, but shape as well. A non-metallic gun will still show up, and though it won't be as bright as a metallic one, anything gun-shaped will raise eyebrows.
    • The climactic scene of the hero lighting a trail of aviation fuel to blow up the plane also contains three errors:
      • Aviation kerosene is very difficult to ignite unless first vaporized (such as in the fuel injectors of a jet engine, or in a plane crash). A pool of aviation kerosene lying on a tarmac runway is unlikely to ignite under cold and windy conditions depicted in the film.
      • As pointed out by the MythBusters, even a trail of gasoline which is far more flammable still burns at such a slow rate that you could overtake it at a brisk walk, making it impossible for a trail of fire to catch up with a plane which is accelerating to take-off speed.
      • As also demonstrated by the Mythbusters, even if the burning fuel did catch up to the taxiing plane and the flame reached the open fuel tank, it is almost impossible for that to cause an explosion of the fuel as depicted in the movie since there would not be the required fuel-to-air mixture for explosive combustion (and the rapid air flow would probably blow the flame out anyway).
    • Also, Dulles International Airport is constantly referred to as being in Washington, D.C. when it is actually in Virginia, dozens of miles away. Also, the airport in the movie looks nothing like the real thing.
  • The kids' movie Five Children and It features a scene in which an eccentric math teacher is about to discover that kid-related shenanigans have been going on, while one of the kids is desperately trying to distract him by finding the answer to a complicated sum. The kid eventually announces that the answer is "3,486,522." The teacher beams "Ah! A prime number of the Siemens series!" and is successfully distracted. Admittedly, the average person might not know that there's no such thing as the "Siemens series" in mathematics, but anyone who entered high school would notice that 3,486,522 is an even number, but 2 is the only even prime number.
  • Godzilla franchise:
    • For all the good things we can say about the Japanese cut of the first Godzilla, it's still got a pretty glaring one of these when Prof. Yamane says that dinosaurs lived 2 million years ago, when any child could tell you that they went extinct 66 million years ago.
    • Any and all films in the franchise can be expected to turn out half a dozen examples of this trope when trying to explain how Godzilla can exist. Nuclear bombs inevitably play a large role in his presence.
    • In Godzilla vs. Megalon, the Moainote  of Rapa Nuinote  are described as being "3 million years old" - at oldest, they're only about 800.
  • Flight Of The Living Dead has an amazing one for anyone with even a faint knowledge of medicine, by having a mutated Malaria Virus be the cause of the outbreak. That must be one hell of a mutation to turn a parasitic protozoan into a virus.
  • At one point in Jupiter Ascending, Jupiter uses a maxi pad as a makeshift band-aid for Caine's wound. That in and of itself is not a bad ideanote , but she applies the sticky side to the wound, not the side actually designed for absorbing blood. One would think her actress, Mila Kunis, would know herself which side does which.
  • According to Kingdom of Heaven, Jerusalem is in the middle of a flat desert. A bit of a surprise to anyone who saw or read about the holy city's verdant hills.
  • The magic ticket from Last Action Hero is said to come from Harry Houdini. This couldn't be farther from reality, since Houdini was a staunch opponent of all things supernatural and acted pretty much like a debunker would today.
  • The entire premise of Lucy rides on the concept that we only use 10% of our brain. This concept has never had any scientific backing and in fact was started by a misquote in the 1936 self-help book How To Win Friends And Influence Peoplenote . Although even Albert Einstein quoted this once, the fact of the matter is people use 100% of their brain and most people have known this for quite a while now.
    • Also notable is the scene in the end, when Lucy goes back in time while sitting in Times Square, until she reaches the time before European settlement and meets four horse-riding Native Americans. It was the Europeans who introduced horses in the area. While she can also move through space, it is clear that she is only traveling through time in this instance.
  • The Matrix
    • Morpheus's exposition that people are kept in suspended animation because they were needed as batteries for the machines is such an egregious violation of the Second Law of Thermodynamics that it makes everyone with just a cursory knowledge of physics groan. The original treatment had the brains of humans used as sub-processors, which is at least defensible, but thought to be too complicated for moviegoers.
    • Agent Smith mentions his contempt for humans, claiming that humans are the only creatures that don't instinctively seek an equilibrium to stop population growth, saying they are more like viruses than mammals. In reality, all animals will reproduce out of control if given the opportunity (i.e. enough food and a lack of predators). Humanity has witnessed (and caused) this to happen in a wide range of species when something happens to the population of their predators or when introduced to a new environment (rabbits in Australia for example).
  • In Nightbreed, a character warns a civilian about "claymores" (a type of land mine) in the area. The camera cuts down not to a land mine, but a grenade connected to a tripwire. A little more subtly, on top of that, its blue detonator marks it as a dummy grenade.
  • In Patch Adams, the title character is ranting at God after love interest Carin dies. At one point, he laments that of all the creatures on Earth, humans are the only ones who kill their own kind. Ever watched the Discovery Channel, Patch? It'd be more accurate to say that humans are the only ones who bother to feel bad about it.
  • The Peacemaker: In this film dealing entirely with problems arising from the fall of the Soviet Union, the writers don't bother to check a post-Soviet map of the world, and include crossings of the non-existent Russo-Iranian and Russo-Turkish borders as critical plot points.
  • In Plan 9 from Outer Space, Eros informs the heroes that "a ray of sunlight is made up of many atoms." Light is made of photons.
    • Which in turn is part of Eros saying that an atomic bomb works by exploding a single atom, so that a bomb which detonates sunlight will be vastly more powerful due to sunlight having many atoms.
  • If you know anything at all about Aztecs or Aztec Mythology, you're doing better than the creators of Puma Man. To take but one example, Stonehenge is apparently an Aztec artifact according to this movie.
  • Saving Mr. Banks has a moment where P.L. Travers is given a stuffed animal of Disney's design of Winnie-the-Pooh, and bemoans the quality of the Disney shorts. Saving Mr. Banks is a film about the making of Mary Poppins. The first of Disney's Winnie the Pooh shorts wasn't released until a full year after Mary Poppins had been released.
  • At the end of Shanghai Knights Roy proposes that he and Wang go to Hollywood to get involved in the motion picture industry. The film is set in 1887, while screening films for admission didn't originate until 1894 in Europe, and Hollywood didn't have a film industry until the 1910s.
  • Short Circuit: The 2nd movie shows Johnny 5 reading The Hound of the Baskervilles, halfway through the book he says, "I think the chauffeur did it" and upon finishing the book he says, "He did." Although the butler was suspected, it was a Red Herring. The killer was Mr. Stapleton who is stated to be a naturalist.
  • Swordfish: Gabriel Shear rants about Dog Day Afternoon, and how he would have liked it to end differently, with hostages being shot, yet Dog Day Afternoon was based on a real event, and made an effort to depict those events realistically. Though not confirmed as intentional, this might as well be a demonstration of how out of touch the villain is.
  • This Island Earth has this line: "It's only Neutron. We call him that because he's so positive." Neutrons of course have no charge.
  • Roland Emmerich's disaster movie 2012:
    • This trailer for the film refers to the Mayans as "mankind's earliest civilization" within the first ten seconds. The Chinese, Sumerians, Babylonians, Greeks, and Egyptians are some of the many who say otherwise—also the Olmecs, who came up with the Long Count calendar all the brouhaha comes from in the first place.
    • The scene of Yellowstone inflating like a balloon in a matter of seconds and exploding like a nuclear weapon, clearly indicating they didn't even bother to get online and look up just what a super volcano is. An earlier draft of the script presents an even more absurd depiction, in which the ground just drops away to reveal a buried volcanic crater, which then erupts.
    • The film also attributes the apocalypse to mutating neutrinos. Neutrinos cannot mutate. Dara O Briain was able to spin this into a very successful comedy routine, also noting that for all the explanation's value they might as well have said 'The Latinos have mutated'.
  • Another Emmerich film, Anonymous, has Edward de Vere show off his garden bush of Tudor roses... a flower that has never existed as a real plant, only a figurative symbol. It's an error that must have been impossible for the director to ignore, since if the plant does not exist, a fake one must have been put onscreen. If they had to make a fake one, then why are they claiming it's a real flower in a film that claims to be based on history?! This is not even getting into the film's claims about De Vere writing Shakespeare's plays...
  • In Vantage Point, Moroccan Muslim radicals want to assassinate the President of the United States, but they all have Spanish names like "Veronica" or "Suarez". While part of Morocco was a Spanish colony at one point, Moroccans did not adopt Spanish names, nor do Spaniards who convert to Islam retain their Christian birth names. Matthew Fox's character also reveals himself to be working for the bad guys by talking in Spanish, even though his character is not Hispanic and his grasp of the language is poor, to say the least.
  • In Resident Evil the Red Queen computer explains to the protagonists how the T-Virus works by reanimating cells. It then goes on to explain how some cells are still alive after a body dies, and says that a person's hair and nails keep growing after they die. That fact is actually an old disproven myth. Hair and nails don't keep growing, but as the skin dehydrates and shrinks around them, it gives that illusion.
  • The Sum of All Fears is about a missing nuclear weapon. The movie's poster has pictures of surface-to-air missiles designed for shooting down airplanes. Not only that, the nuclear weapon that is missing is a warhead that was attached to an airplane-dropped free-fall bomb, not a surface-launched missile.

  • Dan Brown is so egregious, he’s got a trope named after him:
    • Angels & Demons, while famed for a sister trope, has many examples.
      • The book claims that the Catholic Church copied communion (eating God) from the Aztecs. Even young children know that Europeans and natives of the more southerly regions of the Americas didn't meet until Christopher Columbus' famous voyage of 1492... and that Christianity predates that voyage by about one thousand four hundred and sixty years. Also, the liturgies used by Orthodox Christians include communion, and some of them were composed by St. John Chrysostom, who died in 407 AD — four centuries before the beginnings of the Toltecs, the earliest civilization with any direct ties to the people we call Aztecs. He actually got something backwards here: it was Aztec religious leaders who jumped on board with communion. They would occasionally ritually cannibalize sacrifice victims after certain ceremonies, so a ceremony based around eating a god appealed to them.
      • Another one is Gunther Glick, the so-called "British" journalist. Amongst several indications that Glick is an American pretending to be British (and failing badly at it), in an Imagine Spot about his future success he likens himself to Dan Rather. Even granted that his career in journalism makes him one of the very few Brits who have heard of Rather, somebody who imagines their own future success will liken themselves with someone with whom they're familiar (in this case, Trevor McDonald), not someone who is just a name or a face on a few video clips.
    • Digital Fortress:
      • The novel portrays the entire NSA, the world's preeminent codebreaking organization, scrambling around trying to figure out the answer to a simple riddle that anyone who took high school chemistry could easily figure out. On top of that, the answer to said riddle printed in the book is wrong.
      • The novel depicts Spain (and, specifically, Seville) as something resembling a Third World hellhole with, among other things, Spaniards unable to have normal wounds treated in hospitals.note 
      • The Cathedral of Seville and its belltower, the Giralda, is a climactic location in the novel. Brown describes the cathedral as "11th century Gothic" and claims that it was built like a fortress with a single door to fend off attacks from the Moors. Gothic architecture is from the 12th century. The cathedral is from the 15th. It was built with the express purpose of being the largest cathedral in Christendom and boasts seven massive gates; at the time this happened the Moors were a hundred miles away and incapable of threatening it (and had they been capable, hiding in a church with a single entrance and no possibility of escape doesn't make a sensible strategy; the city had walls and castles for that). In the 11th century? Seville was ruled by the Moors, who obviously were in no hurry to build cathedrals. The Giralda in the novel has narrow, dangerous steps, while in real life it is famous for having no stairs but ramps expressly built to allow horses to climb to the top. The chase scene begins when all the parishioners get up to receive communion as soon as mass begins; in Catholic mass, communion is administered near the end.
      • Brown learned at some point that Christopher Columbus is buried in the Cathedral of Seville. Or maybe Santo Domingo. So, being ignorant of Catholicism beyond the fact that he's supposed to hate it, he made the logic leap that Columbus was made a saint. And everyone knows that Catholics chop up saints to make them into relics, right...?
    • The Dragon in The Da Vinci Code is Evil Albino marksman Silas, whose backstory includes getting arrested for murder in a port city of his native France, being sent to prison in Andorra, escaping during an earthquake and falling asleep in a train to Oviedo, Spain where he is rescued by a missionary from Madrid, Manuel Aringarosa, who has been sent to build a church for Opus Dei with his bare hands. Aringarosa names him Silas after Paul's companion because of his miraculous escape from jail during an earthquake. Once again, Dan Brown manages to hit all the wrong notes at once:
      • Albinism causes bad eyesight and even worse marksmanship.
      • Andorra is its own country, not a special prison for French citizens.
      • There is no train in Andorra. The nearest line goes to Barcelona and would need several train changes to reach Oviedo.
      • The very idea of someone sending a Catholic missionary to Asturias, the historical and religious heart of Spain, is ridiculous (a Spanish saying goes that 'Asturias is Spain, and the rest conquered country'). Oviedo is not the village claimed in the book but a city and the seat of an archdiocese, home to a 400-year-old archbishop's palace and over 60 churches and chapels.
      • Opus Dei is a lay order and does not have churches of its own. If this is supposed to be a Catholic church, its construction would be ordered by the head of the diocese, that is, Oviedo's archbishop, not someone in Madrid.
      • The biblical Silas was in jail with Paul when an earthquake hit the prison. He did not escape (he was on the stocks, like Paul), and neither did any other prisoner because everyone chose to continue hearing their preaching rather than gaining their freedom. That was the miracle, not surviving the earthquake.
  • The Left Behind series gets scores wrong from political and religious points:
    • From the beginning, the writers are under the impression that the Secretary-General of the United Nations is the most powerful man on Earth with the power to, if he wishes, demand every country disband 90 percent of their military and they have no choice but to comply. His inauguration is a globally covered event with talk on how he's basically the king of the world. Can anyone out there even name the current Secretary-General off the top of their head? Even better, can anyone name a single instance where a United Nations directive was taken as a command that no nation could refuse to adhere to? The books take the United Nations Is a Superpower trope the extreme.
    • The ease with which a one world currency and one world religion and language are implemented and accepted shows scores of misunderstanding of how international cultures work. On the currency issue alone, look up the often difficult issues of the attempt to make the Euro work and then apply that on a global scale.
    • The "Antichrist" treated as Biblical fact despite how it's never mentioned once in the actual Bible as referring to one person.
    • Ray, a civilian airline pilot is made the pilot for Air Force One...a job only military pilots are qualified for.
    • Off that, the authors seem to think there is only one Air Force One on the entire planet. Technically, the President could be on a single-prop plane and it would be Air Force One as it's the shorthand for "a United States Air Force aircraft the President is occupying." It's also a U.S. term so having the Secretary-General be said to be in Air Force One makes no sense.
    • The main villain launches World War II style bombing raids on cities with the descriptions of the aftermath akin to London during the Blitz. The problem is, they're using 100-megaton nuclear bombs. The largest nuke ever was 50 megatons and that knocked over buildings miles away. Meaning if 100-megaton bombs were used, the aftermath would have cities that are nothing but glass craters, not burned out husks.
    • Buck is described as reaching Penn Station, then having to walk several miles and take a bike for several miles more in exhaustion to "reach Midtown Manhattan." Penn Station is in Midtown Manhattan while the entire island is only 13 miles long, hardly the massive trek the book makes it out to be.
    • The Jordan River is presented as a massive wide waterway that's used constantly for boat traffic rather than the almost unnavigable river it really is. Given the writers actually visited Israel, this is even more jarring.
    • Buck is talked of getting an "exclusive" interview with Carpathia... right after the man has talked to numerous other reporters.
    • That's not to mention scores of issues in Biblical interpretation and completely missing how the UN and other government places (including the media) work.
  • In The BFG, the eponymous Big Friendly Giant goes on a rant about how Humans Are Bastards because they're the only species that kill members of the same species. In reality, intraspecies killing (and cannibalism) is common in many animals other than humans. He does eventually get proven wrong when the other giants try to kill him.
  • Bran Mak Morn:
    • The series contains an absolute howler, when the main character leads the barbarian tribes of England to a crushing victory against the Romans through use of the alien tactic of... the shield-wall. A cursory look in a history-book at a Roman legionnaire, with his big, rectangular shield explicitly designed for shield-wall tactics, will tell you exactly what is wrong with this picture; in fact, heavy emphasis on tight formations and shield wall tactics such as the famous testudo was very characteristic of Roman armies, and generally much less prevalent among the Celts.
      This was the first time the Roman legions had met with that unbreakable formation—that oldest of all Aryan battle-lines—the ancestor of the Spartan regiment—the Theban phalanx—the Macedonian formation—the English square.
    • And the Macedonian general Pyrrhus had gone to war with Rome two and a half centuries before the Romans invaded Britain. Pyrrhus's troops employed "that unbreakable formation ... the Macedonian formation" in that war, and ended up being rather badly broken in the last battle. The Romans went on to beat phalanxes very often in the next century, conquering Greece.
  • Dark Passage, by Junius Podrug, features a Ragtag Bunch of Misfits going back in time to prevent the Islamic extremist terrorists from killing Jesus before his crucifixion. Which is strange, considering Jesus is still a respected prophet in Islam... and Islam didn't exist while Jesus was alive...
  • Jacqueline Rayner's Doctor Who novel, The Last Dodo, features "Mervin, the missing link between fish and mammals", which is just what it sounds like it should be. The thing is, we already know the steps between fish and mammals — they're best known as amphibians and reptiles.
    • The back cover for Doctor Who and the Silurians describes Tyrannosaurus rex as a 40-foot-tall mammal. note 
  • The author of Dragons Lexicon Triumvirate tries to make Dennagon seem smart by making him recite scientific facts. This backfires at times, such as when he claims that "velocity is distance multiplied by time".
  • Lauren Kate has a lot of factual errors in her Fallen series.
    • In Rapture there is a following scene: Moscow, 1930s, (Orthodox) church of Christ the Saviour. The main character is waiting for a mass to start. The church is full of waxed wooden pews and organs are playing. First of all, there were no masses in this church at that time, since Stalin's regime was actively fighting religious belief. Secondly, in Orthodox churches are very few benches, usually at the back, for elderly or ill people. The rest stand during the whole mass (and kneel, when appropriate). Thirdly, there are no organs in Orthodox churches. Or any other musical instruments. People sing and that's all.
    • Also Rapture. Egypt 3100 BCE. The Egyptians use iron chains. No, they still used bronze.
    • Fallen in Love. Mediaeval English village smells of boiling potatoes. Wrong, since potatoes first appeared in Europe in the 16th century note  and became food staple even later. The review site Smart Bitches, Trashy Books coined the phrase “potato rage” for reactions to this type of gross anachronism.
    • Unforgiven. A girl from a Danite tribe in 1000 BCE presumably can read and write, since her father gives her a book with "parchment pages" to write her songs in. Impossible.
    • Also Unforgiven. The author describes "Russian samovar" as if it was a device to keep food hot—one of the characters takes the lid off and inside is an iron skillet with shakshuka. Wrong. Samovars are like kettles, they have always been used to boil water (traditionally for tea only) and then keep it hot.
  • Fifty Shades of Grey:
    • E. L. James' incorrect depiction of BDSM (she doesn't seem to grasp that the sub's consent every step of the way matters, that Christian Grey's constant state of rage does not indicate self-control at all, or that any alleged dom who lashes out at his partner in anger as he so often does would be blacklisted by those in the Lifestyle). It would of course be possible for someone in real life to do the exact same thing Christian Grey does and pretend that his abusiveness is BDSM. Sometimes, if someone is popular in a community, it takes a while until he is shunned for abusive behaviour. But there is probably a reason why Christian preys on inexperienced Ana instead of looking for women who are into BDSM.
      • Christian tries to make Ana sign a contract that says he can do whatever he wants to her, and she can never say no. Wrong. So wrong. A sub can always say no. And while those in the Lifestyle often use contracts, those contracts spell out what the dom can and cannot do to the sub. The sub defines what he or she is willing to do ahead of time. This all ties into James' extreme misunderstanding of the foundation of BDSM; it isn't about getting tied up and spanked, it's about trust. Trust that your partner won't do anything you didn't consent to even though they physically could. That's the turn-on.
      • Another noteworthy example that also crosses over into the films is a scene where Christian is buying items from a hardware store for bondage purposes, one of them is cable tiesnote . It was so egregious that it caused Armored Skeptic and Shoe On Head to out themselves as being in a BDSM relationship just to make a Public Service Announcement designed to set the record straight about what BDSM actually is. A good chunk of this PSA was dedicated to the aforementioned cable ties example. Skeptic when speaking about the dangers of cable ties (around 21 minutes in), goes from jovial and lighthearted to suddenly deathly serious.
    • At one point, Ana drives south from Vancouver, Washington to get to Seattle, which is north of Vancouvernote .
    • In Fifty Shades Darker:
      • Christian's personal private investigator tells him that Leila Williams has obtained a concealed-carry permit for a gun. Ana concludes (and Christian agrees) that this means that Leila can simply buy a gun. A concealed-carry permit has nothing to do with whether someone can buy a gun. Second, when it comes to concealed weapons—and by the way, there are states where having pepper spray in your purse is considered "carrying a concealed weapon"—Washington state is what is known as a "shall-issue" jurisdiction. That means that yes, you can get a concealed weapons license—but you have to meet very strict criteria. Leila does not qualify for five reasons: she is on record as Christian's stalker, and has been for a year; he has a restraining order against her and she's not supposed to come anywhere near him; she has been involuntarily committed to a mental institution; she is a fugitive from two mental institutions; and she's been on suicide watch since Grey broke off the relationship with her. All of these items would not only disqualify her from getting a CCW in even the most lenient jurisdiction, it would also prevent her from buying a gunnote 

        Also, in Washington state, Leila needs the following just to apply for a concealed-carry permit: a valid, government-issued photo identification (for example, Washington driver license or ID card). If you don’t have a Washington State driver license or ID card, you must provide proof you have lived in the state for at least the last 90 days. Well, Leila has neither a Washington driver's license nor a state ID, and not only hasn't she lived in the state for ninety days, she's a fugitive.

        Just to apply for a concealed-carry permit, Leila would have to walk into a county sheriff's office or a town/city police department. The sheriff or cops would fingerprint her and do a background check. For a non-resident of Washington, that would take about sixty days. Yet she is supposed to have obtained the concealed-carry permit the day before...despite having first been confirmed to have been in the state the previous Thursday. The timeline just doesn't fit.
      • Ana says that Christian is "intent on being first to market with a wind-up mobile phone." Well, he's not going to succeed. Know why? Because Swiss watchmakers Ulysse Nardin teamed up with European company SCI Innovations to develop the world’s first mechanical mobile 2009. It's 2011 in-universe, so Christian's trying to develop something that's already in existence.
      • Mia Grey, Christian's sister, tells Ana that he was expelled from two different schools for beating up other students. There would have to be a hearing before expulsion, and his parents would have to specifically waive the hearing—which it's unlikely his lawyer father would do. And if there was a hearing, here are all the rights Christian would have had. Expulsion's not casual and it doesn't happen instantly. There's also an appeals process.

        Here's the reason for keeping a kid out of school in Washington state while he's appealing his expulsion. The kid is "an immediate and continuing danger to the student, other students, or school personnel or an immediate and continuing threat of substantial disruption of the educational process of the student's school." So Christian isn't some "poor sad disturbed boy"—he's too dangerous to have in school.
  • Michael Crichton's works are good for this: Jurassic Park:
    • Dr Sattler reveals to the vet Gerry Harding that the Stegosaurus' pupils are dilated, which is treated as a mighty revelation rather than as evidence that he's clearly not a very good vet, since this is a basic test.
    • The novel ends with the Costa Rican government sending in their military to bomb the island with napalm. The problem is that Costa Rica is notable for being the one country in the world that constitutionally forbids a national military. They wrote that constitution in 1949.
      • The actual mistake is calling it a military force. Costa Rica did have a Gendarmerie referred to as the Civil Guard at the time of publication (it wasn't dissolved until 1996), which did indeed have a small force of helicopters. The kind of large scale bombardment shown in the book would still be out of the question (Crichton gave them the right helicopters, he just didn't seem to know they only had one or two of each).
    • Inverted in The Great Train Robbery where Crichton mentions a device for signalling that a recently-buried individual was still alive. A footnote tells the storey of George Bateson, who designed "Bateson's Belfry" for this purpose, and which made him rich. Unfortunately, he became so obsessed with his own fear that he lit himself on fire with linseed oil to prevent his own live burial from ever happening. A great mood-invoking example... which Crichton made up from whole cloth. The concept, however, went on to be quoted by many historians who assumed that he had done the research, despite no other evidence ever having existed, and it became the stuff of urban legends.
    • Crichton's novel State of Fear is notably full of scientific errors. Being that the book is about a global climate change hoax conspiracy, and much of his bad science heads toward denialism, it might be a case of soapboxing his own views.
  • In The Son of Neptune, Octavian claims that 'sea travel has never been the Roman way'. This could just be written off as Octavian being a dickhead and wanting to screw up the quest, but the sum total of the Roman navy turns out to be exactly one very shoddy boat. While sea travel wasn't wholly embraced, saying that it was never 'the Roman way' is a massive error, and it raises the question of exactly how the Romans conquered places like Britain without ships.
    • For a list of Roman fleets, click here.
    • The series then tops itself by claiming Minerva was a minor god to the Romans. Those of you who play Assassin's Creed will be aware, she was one of the three deities important enough to warrant a statue on Capitol Hill. Those of us who are into Roman history know it too. Minerva was a very important goddess in Ancient Rome.
  • There are two classic ones in Lord of the Flies:
    • The boys use Piggy's glasses to focus the sun's rays and hence start a fire. Piggy is short-sighted; short sight is corrected with lenses of negative focal length, which cannot bring light to a point.
    • In one scene, the sun is setting while a thin crescent moon rises. A moon which rises at or around sunset in the tropics can only be a full moon. It is entirely possible in further north though, which is what the author would be more familiar with.
  • Maximum Ride. Anyone who knows anything about Game Boys could tell you that they don't have downloadable games, and certainly wouldn't have a bunch of them pre-installed if they did. And that you don't sell the display copy of a game console.
  • In Julio Cortázar's story "The Pursuer" ("El Perseguidor"), the main character dies of an overdose of marijuana, which is impossible. Cortázar acknowledged this mistake.
  • Larry Niven is famous as an author of "hard" science fiction, but even he isn't immune to the occasional whopper. In Ringworld, he gets the rotation of the Earth wrong in the first chapter, by having the hero teleport eastward around the Earth in order to extend his birthday. Eastward, as in toward sunrise. This is fixed in later editions.
  • Ratman's Notebooks: The narrator says repeatedly that he does not know how to tell male from female rats. (Rodents reach sexual maturity at six weeks. After this time, you can recognize males from the far side of the room.) There are several references to “furry-tails”, implying that the author thinks gerbils (who really do have furred tails) are a variety of rat.
  • Sidney Sheldon's The Sands of Time: The riveting story of never-ending war and liberal revolution by the Catholic Church against Franco's dictatorship in Spain! The problem is that the Catholic Church was the main supporter—and beneficiary—of Franco's dictatorship. And the history of the Catholic Church ever backing anything that could be considered remotely liberal or revolutionary in Spain is somewhat lacking, to say the least.
    • One thing the book can't shut up about and keeps bringing up over and over and over is the claim of Francoist forces raping nuns, murdering priests and ransacking convents during the Spanish Civil War and after. These were actually cornerstones of Francoist propaganda about what their enemies did, although the Republicans did shoot a lot of priests.note  The apparent source of Sheldon's mistake is the (real) execution of 16 Basque priests by Franco's forces, but he is oblivious to the fact that these 16 were executed for being Basque nationalists and Republican loyalists as a result, not for being priests (or even Basque). In fact, one thing the Vatican is criticized about is that, to this day, they still have yet to acknowledge these priests and others murdered by Franco's forces as victims, while they honor those murdered by Republicans every few years.
    • The only other opposition group in the novel is the Basque separatist group ETA (who seems to be made of about six people and is all about Basque autonomy, not independence). Though Famous-Named Foreigners are rampant through the novel (and when not, they are called Juanito or Patricko—yep, with a 'k'), the only character with a Basque surname is Arrieta, the right-hand man of the evil Spanish Colonel Acoca who hates Basques. The main ETA trio are named Jaime Miró, Felix Carpio and Ricardo Mellado.
    • Said ETA members are also vocal fans of El Cid, bullfighting, gazpacho and chorizos. In fact, everyone is such an over the top Spanish stereotype (and so in love with ETA, unless they are a member of the army or government) that readers should be excused for scratching their heads while wondering why is there a Basque identity at all. Though there is mention that the Basques "want their own language" (which they already have), the only Basque words in the book are ETA's full name Euskadi ta Askatasuna — and it's misspelled.
    • The book is set one year after Franco's death, but there is no notion of political reform to come. In fact, the evil fictional prime minister who succeeds Franco seems to have greater powers than Franco himself, ordering hangings of separatists without even a mock trial, and gloating at his accession that his mandate will be the destruction of separatism. For added surreality, he's named and physically modeled after Leopoldo Calvo-Sotelo, the blandest and most forgettable of Spain's heads of government after Franco.
    • As for hanging, it was abolished as an execution method in Spain in 1828.
  • In Christopher Pike's book The Secret of Ka, basic errors abound in the first thirty pages alone:
    • There is no desert outside of Istanbul. Indeed, the city is right on the water, lying on the rather famous Bosporus Strait, in fact.
    • Istanbul is likewise portrayed as an extremely violent city, similar to popular portrayals of places like the Gaza Strip, which it isn't. It's also portrayed as the capital of Turkey, which it also isn't (Ankara is).
    • The narrator is scolded for saying "Hell" and "Christ," because she's in an Arab country. Turkey is a Muslim country, but not Arab. In fact, one of the reasons why T.E. Lawrence had so much success in the Middle East back in the day is that Turks and Arabs generally don't play well together.
    • The only Turkish name in the entire book is the protagonist's friend's last name, Demir. Demir's first name is Amesh, an Indian name.
    • Turks are described wearing turbans, if male, and burkas, if female. Neither is Turkish attire. Turkey is actually a very secular state that tries to keep Muslim influence to a minimum, although Islamic fundamentalist movements have gained some traction there in recent years.
  • In the '70s horror novel The Sentinel, author Jeffrey Konvitz talks about translating Paradise Lost from the "original Latin." While John Milton was a polyglot who did write some of his works in Latin, he wrote Paradise Lost in his native Early Modern English, which can be understood by modern English readers in its original form.
  • In the Sisterhood Series by Fern Michaels, Free Fall depicts Japan as a Third World country that sells kids to Americans for 100 American dollars. Again, that's Japan, as in the country that was widely believed to be taking over the world only a decade or two before the novel was written.
  • The Sookie Stackhouse Mysteries briefly mentions Hepatitis D as a disease that affects only vampires. Not only is it a real illness, it'd been known about for 24 years before the first book came out. The TV show dealt with this by changing the disease to Hepatitis V.
  • In Richard Lewis's 1980 eco-horror novel The Spiders, the author is constantly referring to the title creatures as "insects." Arachnids are significantly different from true insects.
  • There's a Star Trek book in which the author tried to convert from Fahrenheit to Celsius merely by subtracting 32, without dividing by 1.8 afterwards. As a result, a supposedly perfect paradise planet is said to have a mean surface temperature of a "pleasant 50 degrees Centigrade". That's actually 122 degrees Fahrenheit.
    • Also a common mistake - "Centigrade" and "Celsius" are not the same thing. A centigrade scale is just any scale that goes from 0 to 100.
  • Tarzan fought a tiger when the tale was first being released as a periodical. A reader complained that there are no tigers in Africa and E. R. Burroughs changed it to a lion in the novel version. Disney's Tarzan went even further and changed the lion to a leopard, because lions live in open spaces and are thus absent from the thick, dense African jungle, while leopards can be found in both.
  • Examples from the Twilight series, whose author, Stephenie Meyer, has infamously bragged about doing as little research as possible. Garbled half-remembrances from high school abound:
    • There's no way in HELL that a teacher would be allowed to administer a blood test without sending home permission slips informing parents ahead of time. Had Bella enrolled in school after the permission forms had been sent out and returned, chances are she would have been excluded from the experiment. And even failing that, no teacher who didn't want his pants sued off would grab a kid's finger and jab it with a needle.
    • Rosalie says that, as her father was a banker, her family wasn't hit at all by the Clutch Plague and still retained their wealth. Anyone who's ever taken a US History course would know that bankers were among the hardest hit by the Depression, because most of the banks failed.
    • The fourth book refers to giving Alice "free reign" over the wedding preparations. The correct term is free rein, derived from the technique of loosening a horse's reins so it can go where it likes — i.e. you give someone free rein, you give them the freedom to do whatever they want. Although that usage still makes sense, Meyer still has the use of "reign" confused: later in the book a girl holds up a boy's hair "like reigns," and a reign with a G isn't something you can touch.
    • In Chapter 19 of New Moon, we get this passage about St. Marcus Day in Volterra, Italy: [Alice Cullen] chuckled darkly. "The city holds a celebration every year. As the legend goes, a Christian missionary, a Father Marcus — Marcus of the Volturi, in fact — drove all the vampires from Volterra fifteen hundred years ago. The story claims he was martyred in Romania, still trying to drive away the vampire scourge. Of course that's nonsense — he's never left the city. But that's where some of the superstitions about things like crosses and garlic come from. Father Marcus used them so successfully. And vampires don't trouble Volterra, so they must work."
      • First, there was no "Christian missionary to Volterra" in the fifth century A.D. There was no need for one. Catholicism, which hadn't split into Roman Catholicism and the Greek Orthodox Church yet, was legalized by the Emperor Constantine in 313 A.D. (or Common Era, if you prefer). And it became the state religion of the Roman Empire in 382 A.D. As a matter of fact, during the fifth century CE, Volterra was the residence of a bishop, and the bishops kept that power in Volterra until the twelfth century.
      • Second, Volterra does have a celebration every year in honor of their patron saint—San Giusto. St. Justus, it would be in English.
      • Third, the celebration isn't centered on the cathedral. There's a parade, a tug-of-war, and a city-wide foot race where participants hold lit candles while they run.
      • Fourth, it doesn't happen on March 19th, either—which is Saint Joseph's Day, by the way. It takes place on June 5th, probably because the weather is nicer on that day than on Saint Justus's real feast day—November 2nd.
      • Fifth, Volterra's actual patron saint doesn't have a thing to do with vampires—not in his life, and not as a patron saint invoked against them. This is significant, because some saints are enemies of vampires. St. Roch is prayed to in Poland to keep vampires at bay. And St. Sisinnius, the Virgin Mary and the Archangel Michael are invoked against the gello (a special kind of vampire-demon that steals and eats children).
      • Sixth, St. Marcus could not have been martyred in Romania in the fifth century CE, because Romania didn't exist then. Romania was formed from the provinces of Moldavia and Wallachia in 1859 and was named Romania in 1866. In the fifth century, the area would have been divided into two regions: Dacia Ripensis (a military province) and Dacia Mediterranea (a civil one). Dacia Ripensis flourished particularly well, becoming the birthplace of a noted fourth-century Christian theologian. Then it was captured in the 440s—the fifth century, in other words—by the Huns.
      • Seventh, it would have been difficult for this to be the origin of crosses as anathema to vampires when Bram Stoker wouldn't invent the prototype of this trope (specifically regarding crucifixes, not crosses in general, being that Stoker was a Catholic) until 1897. The Romanian legends of the strigoi had no such weakness.
    • Meyer's research failures extend to not even glancing at a globe. In Breaking Dawn, Edward and Bella honeymoon on the west coast of Brazil — Brazil only has an east coast.
    • For all that Bella supposedly reads the classics, she sure doesn't get much right about them. In New Moon, she contemplates what would have happened if Romeo had fallen in love with "Rosalind" instead. Rosalind was from a different play than Romeo entirelyRosaline is the character Romeo initially takes a shine to. Worse, this mistake happens twice, meaning Meyer's editor missed it both times, as well.
    • And then there's Jasper Hale.
      • First off, according to Chapter 13 of Eclipse, Jasper is described as being nineteen and the youngest major in Texas. Sorry, Meyer, but he wasn't. At least three guys who signed up circa 1861 at the age of sixteen or seventeen received battlefield commissions to captain, major, colonel and even general within the next two years. Apparently it was pretty easy to get promoted during the Civil War; if an officer in your unit died and you brought back most of the men alive, you tended to move up in rank. Also, the youngest major general in the Confederacy—a guy who outranked a brigadier general—was twenty-three. So Jasper being a plain old regular Confederate major at nineteen means very little.
      • However, it's unlikely that Jasper got any battlefield promotions, because Jasper was a Confederate major in Texas. Until about mid-1863, Texas was largely a supply depot. Know how many Civil War battles were fought in Texas? Five. And four involved naval operations.
      • Jasper also says that on the night he was turned—which he claims that he remembers very clearly—he was moving some civilians to Houston and then went off to Galveston to round up the last ones. The problem with this? Galveston is in the opposite direction from Houston, its harbor had been blockaded since the war started, and oh, yeah, it's an island. How he thought he was going to get across the harbor, past the blockade, onto the island and back again without any help or transportation remains a mystery.
    • Chapter 14 of Twilight says that Rosalie found Emmett when he was being mauled by a grizzly bear in Appalachia. Word of God says that he was living in Gatlinburg, Tennessee at the time. The problem is that there aren't any grizzlies in Tennessee and haven't been for hundreds of years. There are bears in Tennessee, yes—but they're black bears, which are rather shy of humans.
    • The series contains numerous errors in basic medicine, anatomy and physiology. For instance Carlisle applies antiseptics after a wound has been closed, when it is utterly useless, and his go-to pain killer is always some form of morphine even in cases when a different analgesic would have a better effect or an opiate simply isn't called for (not to mention doctors cannot simply walk around with opiates in their pockets as they desire).
      • In Breaking Dawn Renesmee demands blood as Bella's main supply of nutrients during the pregnancy. Never mind the fact that everything a baby receives from its mother in-utero is delivered via the bloodstream so that's all she'll be getting anyway, blood itself holds only what nutrients it picks up from the body's digestive system. Carlisle and Edward, both medical doctors, make Bella drink blood in order to sate the foetus. Her digestive system would destroy much of it before it even reaches the part of the system where the nutrients are picked up by Bella's own circulation and carried further to Renesmee (not to mention Bella would likely just throw up from drinking human blood). The reasonable decision would be to transfuse Bella. Reading the books you'd think a direct line runs from the mother's stomach into the womb and the baby's mouth.
      • After Edward rescues Bella from some creepy guys, she says she would have defended herself by punching their noses into their brains. Edward, highly educated Edward, doesn't contradict this. The idea that you can kill a person by punching their nose into their brain is a myth. The nose and the brain are both too soft, and while blows to the head in general can be fatal, the nose isn't a weak point. She'd just piss them off, most likely. Doesn't help that later, when she punches Jacob, she demonstrates that she doesn't know how to throw a punch without hurting herself, let alone put real power into it.
  • Robert Muchamore falls into this quite egregiously when writing about rock music in Rock War. The band the lead female character is recruited into is first said to play 'thrash metal'—an extremely harsh, heavy, usually fast-paced style of metal with emphasis on guitar riffing. He then goes on to say the band has keyboards (which are not a feature in thrash metal line-ups, and would make the girls a melodic death metal band at best), has extremely short songs (a staple of grindcore, hardcore punk and sometimes brutal death metal, but seldom thrash metal), has melodic vocals (which are, for the most part, not present in thrash—making the girls' genre more akin to power metal or traditional metal) and cover songs by Rage Against the Machine. By this point, anyone who has even the slightest knowledge of metal sub-genres is rolling their eyes. It is likely Muchamore took exactly long enough to find out what the heaviest 'mainstream' metal genre was, and just dropped it in to make the girls' band seem edgy and rebellious. In truth, rich 14 and 15-year-olds are far more likely to be playing Paramore-style pop punk or riot grrl punk rock; using these genres would have made the band and characters a lot more believable and won the author cred points with metal fans.
  • A guide to Bath by R.A.L. Smith opens by quoting a scene from Northanger Abbey, naming several of the characters so there's no possibility of confusion — and then attributes it to Persuasion.
  • Once scene in the Council Wars series has John Ringo explain through main character Edmund that humans in the early 21st century were silly for believing in human-caused climate change because human activity involved less energy—and thus produced much less heat—than that caused by sunlight falling on the planet, so how could they cause the planet to warm up? That's not how climate change works, it's not something that any climate scientist has ever seriously proposed, and even a layman has no excuse for not understanding the concept of "greenhouse effect". Ringo is mocking something that no one thinks is true.
  • At one point in the novel The Atlantis Gene by A. G. Riddle, the protagonists make it from Indonesia to Mongolia in under three hours. Their method of transport: an old run down single prop seaplane with little fuel that is barely able to fly. The problem: the slightest bit of research tells you those two locations are roughly 3,000 miles apart. Oops, guess that rickety thing managed to break the sound barrier.
  • King of the Dinosaurs: Tyrannosaurus rex: Dinosaurs went extinct around 65 million years ago, not 5 million years ago.
  • John Keats's sonnet "On First Looking into Chapman's Homer" (1816) mentions Cortez staring at the Pacific in Darien. Darien is on the east side of Panama, on the Atlantic Ocean. Keats had also confused Cortez with Balboa, the first European explorer to view the Pacific Ocean.
    • Keats's mistake got copied in P. G. Wodehouse's serialized novel The Clicking of Cuthburt. Wodehouse added a postscript that read, "if Cortez was good enough for Keats, he is good enough for me."
  • Rick Moody’s The Ice Storm begins with a litany of things that didn’t exist in 1973. Not only did most of the things listed actually exist, some of them were common. (Fax machines were mentioned several time in Fear And Loathing On The Campaign Trail ‘72 and an answering machine was the subject of the Couch Gag in The Rockford Files which premiered the next year.)

    Live-Action TV 
  • Adam Ruins Everything:
    • In the episode about dog breeding:
      • Adam neglects to mention the fact that several pure dog breeds are known for long lives, particularly smaller breeds. For example, the Australian Shepherd on average lives to be 15 years old, as do the Maltese, Beagle, Shih-tzu, and the Lahsa Apso. Toy poodles live to be about 16 years. The Chihuahua? 17.
      • The episode claims that dog breeds originated in the Victorian era due to dog shows becoming a popular trend. This ignores the fact that breeding is required to domesticate an animal, so breeding dogs has been going on since domestic dogs were a species. Many modern breeds date back centuries or even millennia prior to Queen Victoria's birth, such as the Pekingese or Akita Inu. This error is especially egregious because a gag features a mad scientist creating the Pembroke Corgi...which dates back at least as far as the early 12th century.
    • The interview where John Ehrlichman claimed racial motivations for the drug war came to light from the man who did the interview but only decades after it had occurred and after John himself was dead and thus unable to say if he had ever said those things, things his children and colleagues all claim he would not have said. The show itself presents the quote from the interview as an undisputed fact.
    • The "Electric Cars" episode pointed out that the electricity comes from the grid - which does not do much more to mitigate the carbon footprint due to how much electricity is produced by things such as coal, oil, or natural gas. This is ignoring that electric vehicles are sold in countries besides the United States and Canada which have far less "polluting" electric grids. It also neglects to mention how much goes into refining the oil before it can be used. He also cited a power grid that used far less renewable energy than the grid of when the episode was produced.
    • "Ruins Summer Fun" features Adam making the claim that Nintendo had to market video games for boys because they had to pick a side. They didn't. Most retailers like Walmart and Target, even in the 1990s, placed video games right next to the toy section in their own aisle - which eventually grew to the catch-all "Electronics section". The ads are also all shown to be targeted towards boys, but it ignored a LOT of marketing that was just for "kids".
    • "Adam Ruins Weddings" has Queen Victoria appear for a gag saying "Oh, my cake is a white as all my friends!" While it could have been about upper class spotless splendor, rather than her friends' skin colour, Victoria had several notable non-white friends, including her goddaughter Sara Forbes Bonetta, of West African origin, and Abdul Karim, her Indian attendant.
    • In "Ruins Forensic Science" he ends the episode claiming that DNA evidence is the most reliable and foolproof method...when it's actually quite the opposite; DNA can be tracked onto a crime scene in any number of ways, even just a few skin flakes on the bottom of a shoe can plant the DNA of someone who had never been to the site in their life. Even if this weren't the case, most of the time all it would prove is that the person was at the scene of the crime at some point. Furthermore, it really can't be used to identify a culprit since most people aren't registered in the database. Though in all fairness in a later episode he did retract the statement.
    • Adam claims that mammograms are a bad idea, as they cannot tell the difference between the aggressive and more benign cancers, and can result in painful, invasive and even harmful treatments being performed on the benign ones. He's half right here, it's true that mammograms can't tell the difference between types of cancers. However, it's standard procedure for a doctor to order a biopsy after detecting cancer so that they can figure out how to properly treat it or even if they need to do it.
  • Ally McBeal, another David E. Kelley show, makes many legal errors, but the law firm is shown to be "functionally corrupt" and ethically questionable in many ways. Why every single other person in the entire bloody legal system plays by the same rules, on the other hand, is an open question.
  • In season two of Arrow, Laurel Lance is the prosecuting attorney for Moira Queen's trial. In the real world, this would never happen because her presence could get any conviction overturned on appeal, considering not just that she is the ex-girlfriend of Moira's son (who publicly cheated on Laurel with her sister, leading to said sister's death) but also the fact that her boyfriend was one of the victims. In fact, even the fact that the trial was in Starling City is suspicious, in the real world, there probably would have been a change of venue, because it would be impossible for Moira to get a fair trial in the city she tried to destroy.
  • The Big Bang Theory:
    • In "The Nerdvana Annihilation", when Leonard is trying to sell off his toys, one of the toys mentioned is a Mattel Millennium Falcon — it, and other Star Wars toys, were made by Kenner, not Mattel.
    • One episode has Sheldon wanting to become friends with his rival Kripke because Kripke could grant him access to special equipment. He goes to a book store and asks for books about making friends, and is told that all those books are in the children's section. Apparently the writers (or perhaps the sellers) have never heard of the world famous book "How to Win Friends and Influence People," or the concept of self help books in general.
    • In another episode, Sheldon fills his office with hydrogen sulphide and ammonia in an attempt to drive out Raj. Raj retaliates by lighting aromatherapy candles, but accidentally ignites the flammable gases, causing them to explode. However, hydrogen sulphide is highly toxic, and the concentration needed for it to ignite is 43 times higher than the concentration required for it to kill a person. Therefore, the amount Sheldon produced would have also been more than enough to cause Raj and Leonard, who was also in the room, to instantly collapse.
  • Blackadder takes plenty of liberties with history under Rule of Drama and Rule of Funny, but in "Corporal Punishment", it's stated that General Melchett has raised Speckled Jim, his pet pigeon, since he was a child, and the episode kicks off when Blackadder kills him. Melchett is in his 50's at least, and a pigeon's maximum life span is under 20 years. The Blackadder wiki speculates that the original Speckled Jim died, and Melchett was given another pigeon (possibly more than once), and was simply too stupid to notice, which is far more believable.
  • The British "historical" drama miniseries Bonekickers was so rife with simple factual errors, Diamanda Hagan deliberately avoided doing research herself when reviewing it, reasoning that she could get more than enough material to criticize just from what she passively knew was wrong. She was correct.
  • Boston Legal frequently makes errors obvious to even non-lawyers. Lawyers routinely meet with judges without the presence of opposing counsel, evidence that has nothing to do with the case is introduced at the last minute, and the same firm occasionally represents both sides in a case.
  • In the 2012 episode of Brad Meltzer's Decoded, Brad brings up the prophecy of the "Blue Star Kachina" and mentions how NASA has recently discovered an actual blue star. They go on as if it was possible for an actual honest-to-goodness star to hit the Earth come December 21, 2012, and ask a NASA guy about it.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: In "Bewitched, Bothered, and Bewildered" Amy casts a love spell by invoking Diana whom she describes as "goddess of love and the hunt". While Diana was indeed the Roman goddess of the hunt, anyone could tell you that Venus was the goddess of love. What's more is that Diana was one of three goddesses who swore never to marry. And she guarded her virginity so jealously that she turned a man into a deer because he happened to see her bathing. The closest she comes to being associated with love is becoming a goddess of childbirth in other myths. Of course, this could be why the spell goes so badly wrong, but it was more likely a coincidence since, like some other creators named on this page, Joss Whedon boasted about not doing any research.
  • In season 12 of Criminal Minds, an important childhood event for Dr. Tara Lewis is that, while at a school in Germany, she had to correct everybody's pronunciation of her name since they automatically pronounced it wrong ("Terra"). In real life, the pronunciation she insists on is the one that would come natural to native German speakers. A German boy teased her by repeating the "wrong" pronunciation over and over escalating to that boy beating up Tara's brother and painting a swastika onto her locker. The swastika would get a student onto the short list for being expelled, given that the symbol is outlawed and even scribbling it into one's own papers would get a student into trouble. Also, German schools don't have lockers, making the whole event appear to be scripted for a US school and then moved to Germany.
  • Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders makes slews of mistakes easily spotted by anyone who's been to these countries.
    • It's obvious when an episode is not shot on location by the large number of American-style vehicles in places where RHD vehicles are mandated by law.
    • "The Harmful One" has a killer inspired to perform Human Sacrifice via Buddhism...which forbids harm to any living being.
    • Japan is called "the suicide capital of the world." That would actually be Guyana. (Japan is 17th).
    • The plot of "Iqniso" has a killer hunting members of the Apartheid-era "Office of State Security" who were given new identities with amnesty after testifying at the Truth and Reconciliation Commision. First, it was actually the Bureau of State Security or "BOSS". Second, the entire point of the Truth and Reconciliation Commision was that both pro-Apartheid and anti-Apartheid criminals would come forward with their crimes in an effort to promote national reconciliation. All the amnesties are a matter of public record, there was no "witness protection" style cover-up.
    • An episode has a cruise ship landing in June of 2014
    • "The Lonely Heart" has the team radiocarboning a metal object. Radiocarb only works on organic materials.
    • Those knowledgeable about bullfighting have to laugh at "El Toro Bravo." It perpetuates the myth that bullfighting is an equal contest where the bull has a fair chance of defeating the matador. It also claims that a bull trainer reveres and cares for the animals as much as anyone. Finally, it has the odd idea that if a fight takes place on a holiday, the bull is considered "sacred." In reality, fights are always planned for the matador to win. Second, if a bull were to kill a matador, the "caring" trainers would kill not just the bull but its entire line. And a bull on a holiday fight is no more "sacred" than a goose in Christmas.
  • In the "killer gamers" episode of CSI: Miami, the bad guys are basing their crimes on the plot of a video game. The only way the team can find out what happens next is to play the game since the game company executive they talk to refuses to tell them the plot since it's a "trade secret". Anyone who has ever set foot in a video game store has seen shelves full of Official Strategy Guides proclaiming "All Secrets Revealed!" on their covers. And GameFAQs and other online sites, which will reveal those secrets for free! Failing that, you could probably find a playthrough on YouTube. At least a bit of Reality Ensues by Horatio immediately having the executive arrested for obstruction of justice.
  • An episode of CSI: NY had a corrupt ex-coroner who'd been stealing organs and tissues for a reason other than organ theft: to process them for the drugs they contained; the victims were all dead drug addicts from cases that came through his morgue. There wouldn't be enough of the drug left to get out, and it would be difficult to do so.
  • A major episode of Desperate Housewives had a tornado hitting the neighborhood. It's shown on newscasts as a major blob of red/yellow coloring slowly coming forward and folks are shown packing up hours in advance to get away. As soon as the episode aired, the viewer reaction forced the writers to admit that they thought a tornado was like a hurricane, which you can see coming a day in advance. In reality, while storm systems can be tracked, tornadoes are notorious for popping up with little to no warning and are nearly impossible to predict until they're literally happening.
  • Dexter would sometimes look up potential victims of his prey, as well as their victims, on his police computer at the police station. Even if the computer's search history itself wasn't monitored, the police databases he would pull this info from had to be protected enough to keep tabs on who keeps asking for information...
  • Doctor Who — being a science-fiction show — can get away with a fair bit; but sometimes the only reaction to something has to be "no, it isn't".
    • In "The Impossible Planet", the Doctor and Rose find themselves on the titular planet, which apparently is so-called because it's in orbit about a black hole. Which is perfectly possible; a planet can orbit a black hole as easily as it can orbit any other massive body. What would be much more difficult would be to remain hovering over the hole, while material in the hole's accretion disk (which is in orbit) continually blows over it. That's actually the situation in the story, but somewhere along the way the exposition fell over and sprained an ankle.
    • An even more egregious example came in the 2014 episode "Kill the Moon" which shamelessly breaks the Willing Suspension of Disbelief several times over.
      • The Moon's mass increasing tenfold caused "high tide everywhere at once". Quite apart from the question of where the extra water is supposed to come from, anyone who knows anything about lunar tides knows that they bulge out along the line to the moon, not in all directions. Also, the Moon having an Earth-like gravity should have made a tidally-locked binary system.
      • The "giant single celled prokaryotic bacteria" have teeth, hair, saliva, and joints, which are features too complex for a prokaryotic organism, and downright impossible to have if the entire thing is just one cell.
      • The entire concept of the Moon being an egg. An egg is a closed system with the same mass from when it's laid to when it hatches, meaning the Moon could not have just suddenly gained extra mass out of nowhere.
      • The egg breaking apart harmlessly, despite logic dictating that the gigantic pieces of shell should now rain down on Earth as fiery meteor chunks (this is especially bad because one of the characters is treated as morally deficient for pointing out the danger and not expecting the Deus ex Machina dissolution). Also, the strange lack of flooded continents, despite tides having been mentioned as a problem.
      • The egg creature flying away at the end, by flapping its "wings". In space. Which is a vacuum. There is no possible way flapping wings can gain any propulsion without mass to propel against.
      • The creature hatching from the egg immediately lays another egg, which becomes Earth's new moon. Not only would it be impossible for a brand-new hatchling to lay an egg right away (especially considering the egg is bigger than the creature is), it's also impossible for both the creature and the new egg to both fit inside the original moon-egg.
  • On January 18, 2012, the commercials for Entertainment Tonight previewed a story about the Concordia cruise ship capsizing disaster, which they called "The Real Life Titanic". One would think the real-life Titanic would be, well, the Titanic.
  • The premise of Family Affair was that three children from Terre Haute, Indiana move in with their uncle after the deaths of their parents. You'd think they'd know how to pronounce the name of the town they're from, right? No. They kept calling it "Terra Hut." People actually from there pronounce it "Terra Hoat," rhymes with goat.
  • The Flash (2014) episode "The Sound and the Fury" is full of chess metaphors, but the actual game between Harrison and Hartley disregards the rules. Harrison, in check, moves his rook in front of Hartley's king, which is illegal because it doesn't remove the threat to his own king. Even if it were legal, it would only put Hartley in check because Hartley could have taken Harrison's rook with his knight.
  • Forever
    • In "Hitler on the Half-Shell", we see Henry's flashback to 1812, where he learned his father was involved with the slave trade. However, it had been abolished in 1807, and there's no indication this is illegal trading. This builds on the error in the pilot episode, in which Henry is shown on a ship carrying a black man described as "property" some time after 1814 (Henry narrates his first death as "almost two centuries ago" speaking from 2014). To add insult to injury, the ship is flying an out of date British merchant ensign - the ensign clearly lacks the cross of St Patrick, which was added to the flag in 1801 after the Act of Union with Ireland.
    • In "The Man in the Killer Suit" the fake aristocrat claims that he's not a Lord, he's a Viscount, despite the fact that a Viscount is by definition a Lord. His fake passport also, incorrectly, contains the title "Viscount". Given the amount of research the woman training him did to help him with his role, you'd have thought she'd spend five minutes checking Debrett's, which would have prevented these errors.
  • Foyle's War, otherwise impeccably researched, makes a doctrinal goof in "Plan of Attack" when a Catholic man confesses to breaking the Sixth Commandment by committing murder. This is indeed the Sixth Commandment in the Anglican church, but the Fifth in Catholicism.
  • In Friends, Phoebe's boyfriend David ends their relationship when he takes on a scientific grant of some kind in Minsk, which he excitedly declares is in Russia. Even the cheapest world atlas would demonstrate Minsk is the capital of a different country bordering Russia, Belarus, and one made before 1991 would have still marked it as the capital of the Byelorussian SSR and a city in the USSR, not Soviet Russia.
  • Full House: One particular episode features Joey cleaning out his car and finding a number of baseball cards. Included in this list is a Nolan Ryan card, which DJ gives to Scott. Later, it's mentioned that a Nolan Ryan rookie card sold for over $3,000 and Scott goes to try and find it. There are two issues with this one, number one, Nolan Ryan's 1968 Topps rookie card was a two player card featuring Ryan and Jerry Koosman, who is not mentioned at all. Second, the only way the card would be worth $3,000 is if it was in "near mint condition" or 8 on a scale of 10 in terms of condition. Since it was in the back of Joey's car for a number of years, it is next to impossible for a card to be near mint.
  • The Good Doctor: The opening of the episode "Oliver" introduces Shaun's neighbor, a Gamer Chick named Lea, when she comes over to his apartment to borrow batteries. Her cited reason for doing this is because she's playing Uncharted and her controller died. There are only two consoles she could possibly be using to play an Uncharted game and they both use controllers with rechargeable batteries. This wouldn't be so critical, except that this meeting forms the basis for their subsequent interactions, and Shaun even references it again in the episode "Point Three Percent" when he talks about their friendship and implies that it has happened more than once ("I lend her batteries sometimes").
  • Grace and Frankie: A major source of conflict in Season 2 is that Brianna wants to put palm oil in Frankie's lube formula, which Frankie adamantly opposes on moral grounds. She really should be opposing it on more practical grounds: oil of any kind is bad for vaginal health and only silicone- or water-based lubes should be used. Frankie, supposed champion of women's health, should know that, and if she didn't, the research team at Say Grace definitely should.
  • Heroes:
    • Almost any time someone mentions evolution, you can bet it will be entirely wrong. The book of a biology professor claims that the right combination of genes could do things that blatantly break the laws of physics. The son of said professor seems to believe natural selection works by destiny, randomly selecting an individual to be awesome, instead of gradually weeding out unfavorable mutations and allowing better mutations a better chance to survive.
    • The son also states that individuals with beneficial mutations have to fight harder than other people to survive. Which not only fails biology, but also inverts the definition of "beneficial".
    • And those ever-so-convenient eclipses, which somehow occur all over the planet. Even in Japan and the United States simultaneously, never mind how it'd be the middle of the night in one when it's mid-day in the other. Season 3 even has a two-parter where an eclipse lasts for several hours (which is... unlikely, to say the least).
  • In the 90's sketch show In Living Color!, one of its most popular recurring sketches was "Men on Film", in which two Camp Gay men would review contemporary movies and TV shows. If the work had a female lead, they'd both say "Hated it!" The writers didn't seem aware that many of the movies and shows the men hated are hugely popular with gay men, such as The Golden Girls, Roseanne, and Thelma & Louise.
  • In the 2000 TV series The Invisible Man, Darien's surface temperature drops below freezing when he turns invisible. The reason given is that no light is hitting him, but this isn't a plausible one as his body is still generating heat. Not to mention that people's skins generally don't start freezing if they turn the lights out.
  • The final episode of Kamen Rider Wizard is fought in the World of Monsters, and has the Final Boss use various monsters from the past Kamen Rider series that had been defeated by the titular riders. Amongst said monsters are Undeads, Dopants, and Zodiarts, who had all been defeated nonlethally by the Riders from their respective shows. While the presence of the Undeads can be explained away by being Undeads defeated by non-Blade Ridersnote , there is no such explanation for why the Zodiarts or Dopants could be there, other than to have monsters from all the previous series present.
  • The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Dana Carvey's impression of John Bolton on the March 28, 2018 show was mistakenly credited by CNN to Saturday Night Live on which Carvey is a regular, despite the fact that the episode aired on a Wednesday. Colbert had a field day pointing out the goof.
  • A plot point in Legends of Tomorrow has Legends accidentally stopping George Lucas from directing Star Wars and Raiders of the Lost Ark, the second of which was actually directed by Steven Spielberg.
  • The Taiwanese adaptation of The Million Pound Drop does this often enough to lead to suspicions that the show is rigged. Frequently, a blatantly false "correct" answer is given for an answer that happens to be one that the contestants left empty. One particularly obvious incident was when they claimed the correct answer to "Which of these animals is warm-blooded?" was salmon.
  • In an episode of Mr. Belvedere, George tries to cheer up Mr. Belvedere's failed attempt at publishing a book by pointing out that Dr. Seuss's first book was a failure. Belvedere counters that Seuss's first book was The Cat in the Hat, while George thought it was Horton Hears a Who!. They're both wrong on all points. Dr. Seuss's first book was Boners, published in 1931, which was a huge success. His first children's book was And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street in 1937, which actually wasn't particularly successful but gained high praise from critics. Horton Hears a Who! was published in 1954 and was clearly pretty successful if it was adapted into a movie. Finally, The Cat in the Hat was published in 1957. So, George was closer to being right as Seuss's first children's book was not a hit and that Horton does predate Cat. That said, Cat in the Hat was the first book in Random House's Beginner Books series, which may explain the confusion.
  • The O'Reilly Factor:
    • In an example that produced no fewer than two memes, O'Reilly claimed that there was no scientific explanation for tides, notoriously claiming "You can't explain that!"note  while the guest he was interviewing, David Silverman, stared at him with a face that just screamed "you can't be serious"note . For bonus points, when the mechanics behind tides were later explained to him, he showed his lack of understanding of the scientific method by claiming that tidal forces are "just a theory."
    • A viewer wrote that the average life expectancy in Canada is higher than in the US. Bill replies that this is only natural... then makes a statement that would fit right in as a "spot the flaw in the logic" problem in an elementary school math class: 'The USA has ten times as many people as Canada, leading to ten times as many violent crimes and accidents, leading to a lower average life expectancy.'
  • In Red Dwarf, the usually very well-informed Kryten thinks that Virgil's Aeneid is about the rescue of Helen of Troy. Nope: that was Homer's Iliad.
    • Though in fairness, the Aeneid does at least feature the rescue of Helen (as part of the flashback in book 2) whereas the Iliad ends before the rescue of Helen. And the Iliad is specifically stated from its opening line to be about the Wrath of Achilles.
    • Another something one would expect Kryten to know is how to pronounce ASCII (e.g. ass-key), which stands for American Standard Code for Information Interchange. Actually, he thinks the "II" at the end is a Roman numeral, so he calls it an "A.S.C. 2" code.
  • Reviews on the Run's 2010 Blu-Ray award special gave the best voice actor to Kevin Conroy for his performance in Batman: Under the Red Hood. While Conroy voiced Batman in the DC Animated Universe and for some other projects, he wasn't in Under The Red Hood. That was Bruce Greenwood.
  • Sabrina the Teenage Witch: In the season 3 episode "The Pom Pom Incident", Sabrina, in an effort to dissuade Valerie from joining the cheerleading squad claims "No president has ever been a cheerleader!". When the episode aired in October 1998 three American Presidents had been cheerleaders, with a fourth former cheerleader elected just two years later.
  • In one episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, a character describes Picard as being "two meters tall". Given that he isn't even close to that height (equivalent to about 6 foot 7 inches), the writer clearly didn't know the metric system (they might have mistaken meters for yards)note . Joked about in Picard's last appearance, Star Trek: Nemesis — Picard and his clone both lament not having reached two meters in height.
  • Seinfeld: In "The Contest", Jerry watches Tiny Toon Adventures, singing along to "The Wheels on the Bus", a song that has never been on the show, acting as if the show is meant for toddlers.note 
  • Schitt's Creek: Moira gets offered a part in a movie shooting in Bosnia that will be released only in neighboring countries and pay in "local Baltic currency." Bosnia and the other named countries are Balkan, not Baltic. Furthermore, there is no "local Baltic currency," as all three Baltic nations now use the euro, though most Balkan countries have their own currency.
  • Sleepy Hollow features a character who was born and educated in England in the late 18th century:
    • “It’s Middle English. I studied it at Oxford.” (The history of the English language was not taught at Oxford until late in the 19th century.)
    • The gravestone of the main character’s wife says “Burned as a witch”. (Witches in what is now the United States were hanged, not burned.)
  • Stargate SG-1: In "Between Two Fires", the SGC gets an ion cannon to defend the planet against Goa'uld ships in orbit. However, the cannon can only shoot line of sight, so the planet still has a large blind spot. Samantha Carter calculates that they would need 38 cannons at minimum to effectively protect Earth. Considering each cannon has 180-degrees laterally and longitudinally to aim, you would only need 4 cannons to cover all the blind spots on a sphere. It's possible she meant that only one cannon protecting a given region of space would be insufficient; an attacking force might destroy the sole cannon targeting them.
  • Stranger Things: When Will tells Dr. Owens that his favorite candy is Reese's Pieces, Owens agrees that "chocolate and peanut butter are an unbeatable combination." But anyone who's ever eaten Reese's Pieces can tell you that there's no chocolate in Reese's Pieces, just peanut butter and a candy coating. Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, on the other hand, do have that unbeatable combination.
  • Supernatural: In an early second-season episode, John Winchester's blood type is shown on his dogtags as AB (though no Rh factor is given). Early in Season Ten, Dean's blood type is established as O. This creates an interesting situation that is just this side of Accidentally Correct Writing in that it is technically possible but extremely unlikely. Dean can't actually have type O blood as the type A and B genes are dominant, so Dean should have inherited one or the other from his father and have either type A or type B blood. However, it is possible that Dean has the very rare h/h blood type also known as "Bombay blood" (denoted as h/h or Oh). People with Oh blood are missing the H antigen which is the precursor of the A or B antigen. So an individual with Oh blood will appear to have type O blood even if they have the genes for A or B antigens because they simply can't make them. Basic blood tests won't pick up the difference, so Dean could have "type O" blood.
  • Averted in the episode "Jess-Belle" of The Twilight Zone (1959), when an Appalachian witch turns herself into a leopard — with spots — instead of the geographically plausible monochrome mountain lion. On the leopard’s last appearance, a character observes "I’ve never seen a wildcat with spots." note 
  • The Universe had an episode on Mercury and Venus, calling them the two most hostile terrestrial planets in the solar system. So far, so good. The problem was that when the narrator said "Mercury" in the opening, Venus was shown, and vice versa. The two planets look nothing alike: Mercury looks like our moon, while Venus's surface is completely hidden by its clouds.
  • The Weakest Link research team has proved itself to be the weakest link on occasion. When the question "Montreal is the capital city of which Canadian province?" was asked to a contestant, the show claimed the answer was Quebec, while in fact the correct answer is "none": Quebec City is the capital of Quebec.
  • White Collar
    • The pilot revolves around the counterfeiting of "Spanish Victory Bonds", some rare 1944 bonds issued by the US government "to support the Spanish underground in their battle against the Axis". But the Axis did not invade Spain during WW2, a neutral (and Axis-leaning) country through the whole war, and while there was a Spanish underground against The Franco Regime in 1944, the US never supported it financially or diplomatically. The plot could have been easily saved if the writers had explained the bonds' rarity as a result of the US government considering intervention in Spain and then cancelling it for some reason, but we are told that these bonds were printed in Madrid (what underground controls the nation's capital?) and then hidden in Cantabria's Altamira Caves, which would mean that the Axis invaded Spain from the south.
    • The Season 4 two-parter premiere "Wanted"/"Most Wanted" has Neal hiding from the FBI in Cape Verde. In a bizarre case of Latin Land, this episode is filmed entirely in Puerto Rico and there is no attempt to hide it. So while Cape Verde is correctly stated to be a former Portuguese colony, everyone speaks Spanish and has Spanish names. And in spite of Cape Verde being off the coast of Africa and a former hub of the Slave Trade, with a 78% Creole and 21% Black population in real life, the only black people seen are the American FBI agents trying to find Neal.
  • Who Dares Wins once had the contestants tasked to fill in a list of countries in Asia. During the run-down of answers that weren't given by them, one of the apparent correct answers was United Kingdom, which is nowhere near Asia. Especially embarrassing for a British show.
  • Xena: Warrior Princess was famous for playing fast and loose not only with myths but history and religion as well, often lampshaded in the scripts, but the worst example has to be the episode "One Against An Army" (based on the film Zulu and the battle of Rorke's Drift), in which Thermopylae (remember 300?) is located between Marathon and Athens and the Persians are said to have arrived in three-masted "tall ships".
  • Zero Hour!, which centers around a conspiracy related to Jesus' apostles, seems to think that Luke was one of the twelve. Ten seconds on Google would have confirmed that he wasn't.
  • Nip/Tuck: In one episode, a character's hopes to turn her baby daughter into a star leads someone to compare the mother to Joan Crawford and refers to the baby as the next Cindy Crawford. While Joan did have a daughter named Cindy, it was her oldest daughter Christina who followed her mother into acting. The supermodel Cindy Crawford is of no relation.

  • Michael Jackson's "Liberian Girl" not only opens with Swahili, but with a South African singer singing it. They speak Swahili in East Africa, Liberia is in West Africa. The main language of Liberia is English.
  • Singer Mitsou wrote a song called "Les Chinois" which describe how the Chinese know how to make love and we should do the same as them. It obviously reference the Kama Sutra, which is actually Hindu, not Chinese.
  • Neil Young has a song called "Cortez the Killer", in which he praises the pacifist and egalitarian... Aztecs!? Yes, he says "Hate was just a legend, / And war was never known" while he's talking about one of the most bloodthirsty civilizations in human history. He also says they "lifted many stones" and "built up with their bare hands / What we still can't do today." Suffice to say, 16th century Aztec stone buildings are far surpassed by 1970s technology.
  • There is a Dutch DJ who, as of October 2011, claims to get phone calls from Madonna and Frank Sinatra on a regular basis. His phone bill must be through the roof, because Sinatra died in May 1998. note 
  • The song "The Legend of Xanadu" by Dave Dee, Dozy, Beaky, Mick and Titch sets the named city in a desert land, and has a Spanish/Mexican feel, especially the intro. Xanadu (modern preferred transliteration: Shangdu) was the summer capital of the Khans (the winter capital was what is now Beijing) hence is in China, a mostly temperate country.
  • The entire song "King Midas in Reverse", about a character who has the Midas talent but "with a curse" ("everything he touches turns to dust"). When he wrote that song, Graham Nash missed the Aesop of the Midas legend, that the ability to turn things into gold at a touch is itself a curse if not controllable; how would such a person eat or drink?
  • In his song "Peek A Boo," Lil Yachty includes the line, "She blow that dick like a cello." He explained on the Genius lyrics website that he mistakenly thought a cello (string instrument) was actually a woodwind instrument, so ergo, you can't blow it. He waves it off by saying he did it thinking Squidward played it, but of course, he was wrong. He says Squidward actually played a flute, which brings his Critical Research Failures to two, as Squidward actually - and famously - plays the clarinet.
    • Nevermind that you don't even "blow" in the sense of the phrase. It's actually light sucking.
  • The Los Dos Grandes de la Sierra album Chevrolet 4 X 4 has a Ford Ranger on its cover. Not only is it the wrong car, Ford is also Chevrolet's arch-rival. It'd be like naming your album after the Boston Red Sox and having the New York Yankees on the cover.
  • Kanye West's "Black Skinhead" features the line "I keep it 300, like the Romans" - a reference to the 300 Spartans, who were Greek.
  • Sir Mix-a-Lot's "Jump on It" insinuates that prostitution is legal in Las Vegas, when it is not.
  • In the song "Buggin' Out" by A Tribe Called Quest, Phife Dawg raps the line "I float like gravity", even though gravity actually prevents you from floating.

    Newspaper Comics 
  • An early Garfield strip featured Garfield reciting a short poem about spiders. Problem is, he refers to them as insects, when they are actually arachnids. This was pointed out in the author's notes for one strip of Square Root of Minus Garfield.

  • Earthshaker! is about earthquakes but designed with the assumption that earthquakes are like wind-based natural disasters, like tornadoes or hurricanes: People are encouraged to go into underground "earthquake shelters" when they feel one coming, even though this would be much more dangerous than remaining above ground.note  In addition, the player character works for the "Earthquake Institute," traveling up and down fault lines in California to gather data—that should be the work of the U.S. Geological Survey.

    Pro Wrestling 
  • Wrestling Hockey Players, The Ballard Brothers, took up a valet to serve as their Cheerleader, even though hockey doesn't make use of cheerleaders. This could be excusable in that Canadian hockey has some people that resemble cheerleaders, they just don't call them cheerleaders...
  • WCW boasted that an album of a group known as Three Count had gone Platinum. Fair enough. Then Evan Karagias claimed an upcoming second album of there would be more successful than that, going not double platinum but gold, to the amusement/bewilderment of anyone who knows anything about album sales.
  • Vince McMahon, pleased with the success of Rey Mysterio on SmackDown, decided he wanted another high-flyer luchador. So he hired Ultimo Dragon and then got upset when he discovered Ultimo Dragon really was not a high-flyer at all, which shoud've been obvious to anybody within the wrestling business (such as McMahon) with a knowledge of wrestling outside the United States, as Ultimo Dragon is a Japanese wrestler, and Japanese wrestling, or puroresu, is bound to entirely different dynamics to those of Mexican lucha libre. This is despite the fact Ultimo Dragon had wrestled under the WWF banner before and won a WWF championship, suggesting Vince did not even watch his own product.
  • During WWE's Monday Night War series, The Miz inadvertently took a shot at his own company by suggesting the women of the 1980s did nothing interesting, conveniently forgetting Wendi Richter was almost as big as Hulk Hogan during the time and subterfuge involving The Fabulous Moolah had to be used to stop her.
  • Damien Sandow's character was that of 'the intellectual savior of the masses', a highly-cultured Insufferable Genius who claimed that he was superior to everybody else. His merchandise included a T-shirt with the slogan 'I > U: The Sandow Equation'. Unfortunately an equation, by definition, must include an equals sign. Sandow should have been smart enough to realize that his mantra was an inequation.
  • In a story similar to the title quote, Dave Meltzer reported that, for the WWE Greatest Royal Rumble in Saudi Arabia in 2018, Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman requested that Vince McMahon bring some of wrestling's top stars to the Kingdom, specifying names such as Ultimate Warrior (who had been dead for four years at the time) and Yokozuna (who had been dead for 18 years)

  • An episode of Fags, Mags and Bags centering around the local rabbi, imam and priest all sitting in the same bath of baked beans for charity includes the priest's disappointment that as the representative of the newest Abrahamic religion, he has to take the traditional youngest sibling place at the tap end. This line should really have gone to the imam.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The Dark Sun setting was originally designed as taking place on an icy frozen world. During development, it was changed to a desert world because the developers thought that a warm climate would justify fanservicey art with Stripperiffically dressed characters. Showing that much skin is just as dangerous in a desert as it is in the cold because it leaves the body open to sunstroke and allows for more water loss from perspiration, as evidenced by how actual desert-dwelling peoples traditionally dress in long, flowing robes that cover the entire body.
  • Mercenaries, Spies, and Private Eyes, a spinoff of Tunnels & Trolls from 1983, cites certain 'military' guns as only available by capture or issue. Note that this includes the M1911 pistol, as well as M1 Garand rifle; both are relatively easy to find for civilian use.
  • The first Rifts sourcebook, printed in the 1990s, had an animal/monster race called the Ostrosaurus. In the description, they note that despite the name, it's not a lizard like a dinosaur, but closer to a featherless bird. The irony kicks in with the realization that Theropods, which the Ostrosaurus resembles, essentially were featherless birds. Or more accurately, birds are feathered dinosaurs. Or, even more more accurately, birds are dinosaurs with (perhaps) a few more feathers.
  • The Top Trumps card game has Flavor Text that attempts to be informative and educational, but the creators don't seem to have done very much research. There's a particularly monstrous error on the "Life" card in the "Wonders of the World" pack:
    The first known animals to roam the Earth were dinosaurs, over 65 million years ago.
    • Particularly infamous is the Space Phenomena themed deck. Amongst other glaring errors, it states that the Moon was spotted in 1651, Ganymede was discovered before the Sun, and asserts that Halley's Comet has negative mass. Somehow.
  • In Werewolf: The Apocalypse, the evil Black Spiral Dancers have one of their largest bases in the power plant at Chernobyl, implying that the site has been abandoned by humans. But even after the disaster in 1986, Chernobyl continued producing electricity for Ukraine until 2000. To this day, thousands of workers regularly visit and maintain the site and there are even a couple hundred people still living in the exclusion zone.

  • William Shakespeare, as the son of a glove-maker whose schooling mostly included Latin and classic literature (written in Latin), was prone to making these when discussing geography. His plays also include a healthy dose of Anachronism Stew—allusions to Christian themes are frequent even in stories that took place before Christ was born, there are references to contemporary English clothing and culture regardless of setting, etc., so how much of those errors are just stylistic choices is debatable.
    • In The Winter's Tale, Shakespeare committed a Critical Research Failure and was called out on it by his contemporary, Ben Jonson. Shakespeare had his characters shipwrecked on the coast of Bohemia (which is now the Czech Republic) "where there is no sea near by one hundred miles." Shakespeare's mistake was likely an artifact from his original source, which took place in Sicily, not Bohemia.
    • In Antony and Cleopatra, Cleopatra suggests playing a game of billiards, a game which wouldn't exist until about 1000 years later.
    • In Julius Caesar, Caesar proclaims himself to be "constant as the Northern Star". As was well-known to educated people by Shakespeare's time, the Northern Star isn't a constant (which star it currently is, is affected by the precession of the equinoxes) and there are even long periods when there isn't a Northern Star — such as Caesar's time. Isaac Asimov called out Shakespeare on this in his essay "Constant as the Northern Star" — partly as evidence that the plays (or at least Julius Caesar) couldn't (as some people suppose) have been written by Francis Bacon, as Bacon was well-educated and would have known this.
  • The Book Report song in You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown is a fairly blatant example of this, as Linus's overly-detailed analysis on The Tale of Peter Rabbit has very little to do with what's actually going on in the book. When he goes on a long explanation on "the sociological implications of family pressures so great as to drive an otherwise moral rabbit to perform acts of thievery which he consciously knew were against the law," and claims that "Peter Rabbit is established from the start as a benevolent hero," anyone who's actually read the book knows he's talking out of his ear here — Peter is a rather amoral protagonist, the entire story happens because he refuses to go along with his family, and his first action in the book is a willful act of disobedience; nowhere in the story does he display any sort of benevolence or heroism.

    Video Games 
  • In Mega Man 8, the English voice actors pronounce the name of Mega Man's rival not as "Bass" the sound, but as "Bass" the fish. Considering the number of references to sound in the names of Mega Man characters, it's baffling how Capcom got this wrong.
  • Total War has generally poor aim towards historical accuracy.
    • Rome: Total War was a blatant example of cliches and anachronisms, to the point that most of its successful mods (like Europa Barbaroroum) were dedicated to restore historical accuracy for the factions in game. Egyptians were depicted as the biblical people of the pharaohs, with some aesthetics more akin to a film from The Mummy Trilogy rather than true history, while in 272 BC Egypt was ruled by a Hellenistic dynasty. Germans, Gauls and Britons are depicted like naked disorganized cavemen, but most of all as unified entities. Carthaginians and Parthians are depicted as Arab-like. The Romans never were divided into four factions, already planning to expand into the borders of the subsequent Roman Empire from 272 BC (a time when the Romans were actually ending their struggle for southern Italy). The most blatant example is with the Julii who were not a prominent family that time, neither they already started warmongering with the Gauls until 250 years later - not counting the mischaracterization of the Scipii, and the Brutii being a full faction for some reason aiming at Greece. Units were shallowly designed, most of times relying on some stereotypes, without the diversity of that period, particularly for barbaric factions. Before the end of the 3rd century in game, the Romans can easily field armies full with the armor lorica segmentata (which was actually used after the time span of the game and to a limited extent that is still controversial today among academicians), archers that look like late medieval armored longbowmen, heavy shock cavalry (which never was Rome's forte, they relied on allied cavalry and mostly as light cavalry), "arcani" ninja-like soldiers and praetorian cohorts (which were personal guards of the emperor and not regiments for full scale battlefields).
      • Its expansion Barbarian Invasion shows the Berbers having Muslim names and iconography such as the crescent Moon, despite Muhammad being born 300 years later than the game start and that symbol during this time being used only in the Eastern Roman Empire. The Franks, on their own, can field paladins after establishing in Gaul, despite Charlemagne coming 450 years later. Eastern Roman Empire is orthodox, despite the schism coming roughly 700 years later. The spawnable Romano-British faction is a mix of modern films about the Arthurian legend like King Arthur or The Last Legion, rather than being actually based on the province of Britannia after the withdrawal of roman legions.
    • Total War: Attila plays on the actual hypothesis that the Huns were related to proto-Mongols and were known by ancient Chinese sources as the Xiongnu. But already from the main screen the Huns are depicted as they were actual mongols from 800 years later. Even the soundtrack has tunes like Mongolian traditional folk music, which didn't already exist. This error is already big if we take for certain that Huns were related to the proto-Mongolian ethnic family. Problem is, while there is some evidence that the Huns and the Xiongnu could be the same people, the hypothesis that they were of proto-Mongolian stock has never been not only confirmed, but neither even hinted from any real archaeological evidence that could suggest a link. As for now, it remains only speculation. Considering the wide range of various nomadic peoples that inhabited Asian steppes in the course of millennia (Scythians, Sakae, Alans, Iranians, Hungars, Avars, Bulgars, Turks, Altaics, Tochari, Yuezhi, etc.), many of whom were even Indo-European, it is really premature to depict the Huns this way.
    • Sieges in the early modern period required the careful and continuous digging of trenches to shield oneself from heavy artillery housed in fortresses and move one's own siege guns up to the curtain wall, and the thick, low, sloped bastions of trace Italienne fortresses were almost immune to field artillery. Even when the wall was breached, attackers were often hesitant, since it would mean advancing through overlapping fields of artillery fire from the bastions. However, in Empire: Total War and its successor, it's the bastions that will break under light artillery fire in under three minutes, while the curtain wall is generally indestructible. This leaves the assault force relatively safe from overlapping fire, and makes fortresses a questionable investment, when in the Early Modern Period, they were so essential that states bankrupted themselves to pay for these fortifications.
  • The reason why the 8th gen Paper Mario games only have Toads as a recurring friendly species is because producer Kensuke Tanabe thinks they're the only allies Mario has in the main series, and has encouraged his fellow staff to think likewise. Even a quick glance towards early gameplay of several main series games quickly demonstrate the utter falsehood of this belief, with species such as Piantas, Nokis, Jibberjays and Whittles, among many others.
  • In Koudelka, the first part of the Shadow Hearts series, the action takes place in an old abbey in Wales, which the manual says is a "small country in the north of England." Wales is west of England, and calling it a country is a stretch — it's part of the UK. It's a fairly common error in Japan (and other parts of the world as well) to think England, Britain, and the United Kingdom are synonymous.
  • Scratches takes place around the 1970s. This setting has led to two mistakes.
    • When Michael Arthate keeps calling the bank, the employee on the other hand eventually answers the phone with the words that he will call the police if Michael keeps calling. Given the above setting, the employee's phone would not have any Caller ID, making it impossible for him to know that it's Michael calling, without even saying anything.
    • One newspaper article talks about how a large amount of money was stolen, with the currency listed as Euros. The Euro currency was not established until 1999, a good 20 years after this game takes place, and physical Euros weren't available until the end of 2001. There's also the fact that Britain never took on the Euro currency and has retained using Pounds, making this a double-whopper of a mistake.
  • Spec Ops: The Line: CIA agent Riggs justifies his decision to kill everyone in Dubai by stating that if the world ever knew what Colonel Konrad and his men did in order to maintain order in Dubai, every country in the middle east would declare war on the US, and the US would definitely lose. This doesn't work from either a story or factual standpoint, because A. Konrad's 33rd had disobeyed orders and gone rogue long before they started killing civilians, so no reasonable country could hold the US responsible for their actions, and B. No middle eastern country has the resources to attack the United States in an all-out war. This leads to the fairly popular Alternative Character Interpretation that Riggs was deluding himself to justify doing horrible things, which is the central theme throughout the game.note 
  • PETA's video game parodies tend to fall into this. Super Tanooki Skin 2D's entire "fur is murder" message is undermined by the fact that the titular Tanooki Suits aren't made from actual tanuki.
    • Then there's Pokémon Black and Blue: it completely omits the whole "trainer-Pokémon trust" dynamic that plays a critically thematic part of the Pokémon franchise (especially in the Generation V titles), claims that Ash wants to imprison Pikachu in a tiny Poké Ball for the rest of his life even though Ash never put Pikachu in a Poké Ball, and has the Pokémon supporting Team Plasma despite the fact that they were revealed to have less than savory ulterior motives in the previous game. Moreover, N, one of the few characters whose ideology does align with PETA's mission at least until he realized the error of his ways in the first game never makes a single appearance to support the player's liberation campaign! This is quite odd considering Ghetsis appears as a villain with his Straw Hypocrite nature pointed out, suggesting that at least someone on the development team was familiar with Pokémon Black and White's story.
    • Also, you can't murder animals. Murder is a legal term referring to unlawful killing of a human being.
  • The 8-Bit adventure game Sherlock (successor to The Hobbit (1982), using the same game engine) was based on various details from the stories. Sadly, Mitchell and Megler got one detail wrong — they assumed that Leatherhead was a fictional town, hence the heroes travelled to it from King's Cross Station, placing it somewhere to the north of London. Leatherhead (like nearly all towns in the Sherlock Holmes stories) is real; and is in Surrey, to the south-west of London. Try traveling there from Waterloo next time, guys. (They also sometimes misspelled it "Leather Head".)
  • In EA Sports UFC 2, Russian martial artist Khabib Nurmagomedov is shown doing the Eastern Orthodox Sign of the Cross gesture, in his victory pose. Nurmagomedov is a devout Sunni Muslim. He is of Avar descent, which has been predominantly Muslim for centuries. EA quickly apologized and fixed the mistake in a patch.
  • Update 1.12 of Minecraft introduced parrots, which could be fed chocolate chip cookies. Mojang quickly fixed this with a patch providing an alternate food due to the fact that Chocolate is poisonous to parrots (and other animals in general). The in-game parrots now die if fed cookies.
  • The reason why Sonic the Hedgehog has Super Drowning Skills is because lead programmer Yuji Naka thought that hedgehogs couldn't swim. Too bad they didn't have Wikipedia back in 1991, because a quick skimming of the article on hedgehogs plainly says they can. note 
  • X-COM: Terror from the Deep started on Thursday 1st January 2040. That year actually starts on a Sunday.
  • An example for Overwatch; while designing the map Dorado, the team based it heavily on a beautiful Mexican town on Google Images that actually turned out to be Riomaggiore, Italy.
  • Fate/Grand Order: During the America singularity, Helena sadly mentions that Medb's army has already taken over the White House before the protagonist and Mash showed up. Except the singularity takes place in 1783 during a derailed American Revolutionary War. The White House wasn't built until over a decade after the war ended.
  • The early Sierra game Time Zone, an adventure through time and space, was among the earliest by Roberta Williams, who claims in the game's manual that "History books aren't a lot of fun." This would explain, to give just two examples, why the game believes man discovered fire in 10,000 B.C., and thinks Catherine the Great (born 1729) was the wife of Peter the Great (died 1725).

  • This episode of Neko the Kitty is set in a museum, near the Giant Slug exhibit. The author admits to doing no research on museums for this sequence.
  • This Eddsworld comic introduces us to Edd's..."brothers", Ed and Eddy, obvious expies of the titular trio from Ed, Edd n Eddy. Anyone who's seen the show will notice that the character expies are actually of Ed and Edd ("Double D")—Eddy is the short one in the yellow shirt.
  • In the "CWC's Love Quest Saga" sub-episode of Sonichu, while Chris-Chan is talking with a girl named Hanna, said girl mentions that she enjoys reading Chuck Palahniuk among other things. The problem is with the footnote at the bottom, which states that Chuck Palahniuk was the director of Fight Club - the director of the film adaptation was David Fincher; Palahniuk was the author of the booknote . To be fair, Fight Club is a case of Adaptation Displacementnote , but one can't help wonder how Chris knew about Chuck Palahniuk's involvement, yet didn't know he was an author.

    Web Original 
  • The Angry Video Game Nerd:
    • He ranted, among other things, about being killed by a frog in Super Pitfall. The Granular Poison Frog has killed more than a few people, and yes, it lives in the jungle. That's also not counting people killed by weapons dipped in their poison, or various other kinds of frogs from the jungle that are also deadly to the touch.
    AVGN: Has anyone ever died by being attacked by a fucking frog?!note 
    • In his Castlevania series, he mentions the plot of Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow but talks about Dawn of Sorrow, which a sequel to Aria that takes place about a year later and doesn't feature Dracula's Castle. His "fatal flaw" in Castlevania 64 is actually his own inability to try hitting the "interact" button (which is surprising, since he made it that far); instead, he had tried to use the items from the menu, which is for items you use on yourself. He also claims the game "has no music"... in an area that only has windy ambience, which is not only erroneous but also egregious considering not only would he have heard one of the best tracks in the game by that point, but was literally seconds away from hearing another great (and remixed) track if only he could figure out which button would lay down that nitro...
    • In his review of the Ghostbusters (1984) games, he complains that the heroes can only shoot in an upward 45 degree angle in the Sega Master System version. Apparently James didn't think to try pushing the other button on a 2-button controller that allows the player to shoot horizontally.
    • He makes a similarly egregious claim in his review of The Wizard of Oz when he claims only Dorothy and The Lion can "shoot things". In actuality, Dorothy can shoot all three pickups and all three of her friends are restricted to shooting just gems, but all four characters are capable of shooting nonetheless.
    • When playing the video game adaptation of The Terminator for NES, he claims there are no codes for extra lives or continues either in the game or via Game Genie. He's right about the Game Genienote  but there absolutely is a "cheat mode" that grants unlimited lives and the option to skip to the next level by pressing start, activated by entering "B, B, Up, Left, A" on controller two.
    • In the Snow White and the Seven Clever Boys episode of "Bad Game Covers", he states that the art on the cover should not resemble the bad in-game graphics. The "game" in question is actually a 2D cartoon with 3D backgrounds whose characters look nothing like the Disney knockoffs on the cover. (Though to be fair to the Nerd, this just makes the cover art even more inexplicable.)
    • On a making-of video, he revealed a particular blunder from his review of Street Fighter 2010 wherein he said the final boss looked like Grimace from Sesame Street. Grimace is from McDonald's. Fortunately, a friend had caught the mistake before the video went live.
    • His long-time hatred of LJN Toys, whom he frequently blames for making terrible games, is a case of this as they're not a game developer but merely a publisher. He's even drawn false comparisons, such as claiming Friday the 13th and A Nightmare on Elm Street were the same because they were made by the same people, when the former was made by Atlus and the latter was made by Rare (who were responsible for countless games he's praised). Over 100 episodes (and presumably countless e-mails and comments) later, he finally acknowledged this but stated he didn't care who actually made the game and feels LJN's track record of publishing awful games makes it more than fair to blame them for "making" bad games.
    • Other, non-AVGN videos from James Rolfe sometimes have similar errors. His review of Yokai Monsters: Spook Warfare incorrectly identifies it as the first film in the series when it is actually the second, totally misses the fact that the monsters in the film are characters from Japanese mythology rather than original creations, and features a lot of misconceptions and false assumptions about Japanese culture and how it relates to western culture. He also mistakes the "hopping vampire" archetype as a Japanese invention when it is in fact Chinese.
  • In ConnerTheWaffle's video about Tetris ripoffs and other similar puzzle games, when speaking about Wordtris (a puzzle game where you have to spell words with the falling blocks) he calls it "A game fine for 5-year-olds", with a picture of Lana Loud appearing briefly on screen. Lana is 6 years old.
    • His video on Mega Man fan games is rife with factual errors. The most blatant being claiming Mega Man: The Power Battle was a fan game (which it most definitely is not). Other errors include claiming that the characters in Mega Man 8-Bit Deathmatch all have unique abilities (everyone in that game plays exactly the same), calling certain fan games “hacks”, neglecting to mention how Street Fighter X Mega Man was officially endorsed by Camcom, and so on.
  • The Decline Of Video Gaming has the Prince of Persia use the Sands of Time to cheat at the lottery, with Navi scolding Link for not thinking of that. Link does think of that in Majora's Mask, the direct sequel, where he can take advantage of the three day "Groundhog Day" Loop to cheat at the lottery.
  • Extra Credits:
    • In their video about sexuality, they talk about how tired the trope of a tough male with a feminine side is. In a quick visual montage of examples, they show Final Fantasy XIII's Lightning, who anyone looking at the character can tell you is female. Of course, they've admitted to deliberately including errors in their videos in an effort to prevent viewers from blindly accepting everything they say, so this may very well be intentional. Or an Ass Pull.
    • At one point in their video about faith in video games being nothing more than a simple mechanic instead of something more meaningful they segue into a completely inaccurate description of earth 20th century physics, which they claim to have all been made on faith. That is completely inaccurate. Physics was undergoing rapid advancement in part BECAUSE the up-and-comers of the field were challenging the classic assumptions, which is the opposite of faith.
  • Gaia Online made a terrible mistake whilst describing a new item called Lala the Koala Plushie.
    "Lala the Koala Plushie pays tribute to the noble koala bear, which is now just returning from hibernation to resume it's [sic] voracious consumption of eucalyptus".
While regular bears hibernate, koalas (which are not bears, or even placentals) live in Australia, which even in its temperate zones doesn't get cold enough to necessitate hibernation.
  • In Gnoggin's "Pac-Man Theory: The True Story UNVEILED!" video, he claims that Pac-Man debuted in 1985, when it was actually in 1980. This blasts a hole in his whole theory, as he says that each of the ghosts represents an infectious disease and that Blinky stands for HIV, but that virus was not known to science until 1981.
  • The Honest Trailers Mary Poppins trailer's "starring" section calls Mrs. Banks "Doesn't Even Get A First Name", even though she is addressed as "Winifred" several times in the movie.
  • JonTron's review of Clock Tower declares that if you die in the game it's "back to the beginning". Literally the opposite is true: the game gives you unlimited continues, respawns you as close as to where you died as possible, and lets you keep any progress you made. It's only if you get a Bad Ending (caused by missing items or making wrong choices) that you're forced back to the beginning, which is actually helpful as it allows you to go back and avoid the same fate in your following playthrough.
  • In the Half in the Bag preview for their Prometheus review, Mike claim that there were 65 million years of dinosaurs before humans. Unfortunately, he has that backwards: dinosaurs have been extinct for 65 million years.
  • The Irate Gamer claims a lot of these, including the fact that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time was only released on the Super Nintendo when it actually was released as an arcade game before being ported to the Super Nintendo.
  • Matthew Santoro:
    • In "20 Reasons Why NOT to Be 'In Da Club'", Matt says that if you're at a club and you fall anywhere, you should just assume you have AIDS or herpes, because of all the broken glass lying around. In reality, falling on broken glass lying around is extremely unlikely to give you AIDS, as that has only happened a few times.
    • In "Catching Up: With Matt! (#1)", Matt says that Mexico is part of South America, but it's actually only part of North America.
    • In "10 Famous Paintings with HIDDEN CODES!", Matthew refers to Hades as a "Greek goddess." However, Hades is a Greek god, for he is male.
    • In "10 Weirdest Dinosaurs You Never Knew Existed" includes four animals that aren't dinosaurs: Sharovipteryx (a non-dinosaurian reptile), Longisquama (another non-dinosaurian reptile), Jeholopterus (a pterosaur) and Helicorpion (a shark). He also claims that Longisquama had feathers and was a relative of modern birds (the fronds on its back were not feathers at all, and some argue that they weren't even attached to the body and instead just plant matter that happened to be fossilized with the animal) and that Jeholopterus was a vampire bat analogue (apart from David Peters insisting that he sees adaptations for vampirism in the animal, there is no tangible evidence for it and Peters is generally regarded as a Know-Nothing Know-It-All in paleontological circles).
    • In "Mysterious Videos on the Internet No One Can Explain", the vast majority of the videos on the list actually were explained, some of them even years prior to the video's upload, or were debunked as hoaxes.
  • The Mysterious Mr. Enter:
  • In Quality Control's review of Interstella 5555, he claims that Discovery was Daft Punk's first album. Discovery is their second album. Homework was their first.
  • In his Zero Punctuation review of Hob and A Hat in Time, Yahtzee offhandedly calls Doki Doki Literature Club! "upbeat cartoon pornography".
  • SF Debris has a couple minor examples. Chuck says in his Batman Beyond review that the movie was censored because it was judged too violent. While that helped, the real catalyst was the Columbine Shooting that occurred before the film came out.
    • Another small error is in his review of The X-Files episode "Aubrey", where Chuck says Harry Cokley (a suspect in unsolved serial murders from the 1940s) did only 8 years for attempted murder and rape. In the dialogue, however, it's said he was convicted in 1945 and released December 5th, 1993, meaning he must have served 48 years at least.
    • In his review of Star Trek: The Animated Series episode "Yesteryear", Chuck claims that the series was perhaps best known for the infamous audio clip of Shatner arguing with a producer over the pronunciation of the word "sabotage". Said audio clip was actually from the recording session for the video game Star Trek: Judgment Rites, not Star Trek: The Animated Series.
  • Bob Chipman once did an episode about how Halo was racist because the UNSC was composed of white people, while the Covenant were ethnically diverse. However, both of these are quite false. Sergeant Johnson, one of the biggest badasses in the series and a fan favorite, is black, and several of the Marine Red Shirts beginning in the first game have identifiably Latino accents, the Elites leave the Covenant to assist humanity in Halo 2, and in Halo: Reach, the majority of the place names are Hungarian, while Emile is black and Jun is Chinese, making it clear that the UNSC is composed of all of humanity. As for the Covenant, while they do have a wide range of alien races, they're segregated in a strict caste system and most of them are enslaved (and the reason the Elites jumped to humanity's side was because the Brutes and Prophets enacted genocide against them); hardly a shining example of ethnic diversity.
    • While he did mention the fact that the Covenant military was basically a slave army in the video, he then tried to justify himself by saying that nobody plays Halo for the story. In other words, Chipman basically admitted that Halo is only racist if you completely ignore any and all context.
  • This TheGamer video about Following The Leader in video games states that Bubsy is a rabbit, when his species is actually a bobcat.
  • Epic Rap Battles of History: It could probably be chalked up to Rule of Funny, except that this series is usually so well-researched that almost every line is a reference to one of the rappers' lives. Mr. T calls Mr. Rogers a "40 Year Old Virgin." This is just wrong. Fred Rogers married at the age of 24, and had his first son at the age of 31.
  • Death Battle tends to get a number of their information wrong about various characters they're pitting against. One that was actually caught and changed concerned Tony Stark and being genetically altered to be a transhuman savior of the universe. That was actually his brother Arno Stark and Tony was adopted to fool the one doing so.
    • A few years later, many fans cried foul over the Android #18 vs. Carol Danvers fight when they gave Android #18 absorption powers due to her having them in Dragon Ball Xenoverse when, in canon, she and her brother Android #17 were Eternal models that didn't need to absorb energy. Ben Singer actually went back, realized that they were completely correct and apologized for it.
    • An earlier example of this can be found during Ragna's analysis in Ragna the Bloodedge vs Sol Badguy. During the analysis, Wiz and Boomstick conclude each question and topic of the BlazBlue universe with the frequent answer "no one knows", as if claiming that there are no answers to those topics. However, to many BlazBlue fans, Critical Research Failure was really apparent here. There are, in fact, answers to many of the topics they bring up in the analysis, which can be found by simply playing the games and looking up the BlazBlue Wiki page. For example, Ragna's bounty, which they said was in an unknown currency, is revealed both in the games and on the Wiki page to be "Platinum Dollars". Many fans flooded the video to give the correct answers to the topics that Ben and Chad failed to even look up.
    • Most of Erza's bio in Erza Scarlet vs Roronoa Zoro. They made several claims that could have been easily rectified, such as claiming that Erza's best speed feet was blocking a bullet from a flintlock pistol, when in fact her greatest speed feat was outspeeding a mage who was fast enough to cut every nerve ending in the human body in under one second. They also stated that Erza had no armor that increased her speed, which she does, in the form of her Flight Armor. Finally, it was stated that the Clear Heart Clothing was Erza's strongest requip, when in fact it's the Nakagami Armor.
  • SomecallmeJohnny:
    • In his review of Pokémon Red and Blue, he mixes up a photo of Satoshi Tajiri (creator of Pokemon) with that of Tsunekazu Ishihara (the president and CEO of The Pokémon Company). Not a huge offender, but it's still a failure in research.
    • Another minor one appears during his Pokémon Gold and Silver review not from Johnny, but from co-reviewer Ryan when they question some of the evolution methods. Ryan then takes a potshot a Generation 4 for its use of trade evolutions which has existed since the beginning of the series and has appeared in every generation. Even worse, this was said when the Porygon line was shown on-screen, which received its first evolution by trade in the same generation they're reviewing.
  • In Lady Jess's crossover review of The Jazz Singer with The Rap Critic, she briefly discusses heroines in young adult novels, putting up images of their covers. Problem is, half of them have male protagonists (I Am Number Four, Beastly, The Maze Runner, Harry Potter, and The Hobbit). This is all the more egregious by how the male lead of Harry Potter is right on the front cover on the image and The Hobbit (which isn't even a YA book) has no female characters.
  • A Chain Letter which circulated in the late 1990s promised that if it were kept going until the millennium, all participants would get their names listed in the Guinness Book of World Records. Apart from the obvious fact that what goes in GBWR is solely up to Guinness Superlatives and nobody else, there are a few other points:
    • Guinness can and sometimes does reject records which it considers undesirable or unwholesome (for instance, all food-consumption categories have been retired). A spam-related record is likely to fall foul of this.
    • Guinness only publishes names where the record is held by an individual or a very small group; where there are hundreds or thousands of holders, it would be tedious and pointless to name every last one, so they are acknowledged only as "[X number of] people".
  • A popular Urban Legend among certain Christians is that a student standing up to his Hollywood Atheist professor who usually with The Reveal at the end to be Albert Einstein...which is almost instantly debunked when you remember that Einstein was Jewish and while he wasn't an atheist, he identified as agnostic (albeit as he put it "a religious nonbeliever").
  • The 101 Facts About Space video uploaded by 101Facts has A LOT of inaccuracies that would make astronomers and space enthusiasts cry, but by far the most egregious example on the video is fact #23, where the speaker says it would take a spacecraft 70,000 years to reach the Sun. This is completely false, because it's been estimated that it would take today's fastest spacecraft actually less than a year to reach the Sun. Until 2018, the closest any spacecraft has ever gotten to the Sun was Helios 2 during its closest approach in April 1976, at a distance of 0.29 AU (that's closer to the Sun than Mercury), a mere three months after it had launched. And the Parker Solar Probe, which was launched in August 2018, will get much closer to the Sun at 0.040 AU in a span of six years after making several flybys of Venus and broke Helios 2' record, approaching at 0.17 AU of the Daystar, less than three months after launch. In addition, several other spacecraft had also crossed distances in our Solar System greater than 1 AUnote .
  • Channel Frederator's "107 Facts" videos occasionally have rather glaring cases of misinformation. One particular example is claiming that Dan Castellaneta voiced Squidward Tentacles in some episodes of SpongeBob SquarePants instead of Rodger Bumpass, when the only source of information claiming that was an article for an upcoming episode that turned out to be a hoax. Another damning case was in their video containing 107 facts about Scooby-Doo, where they acknowledged that Fred Jones' voice actor Frank Welker did voice work for The Transformers and the Transformers Film Series, but claimed that he voiced the character Barricade in both of them. G1 Barricade was a toy that came out a good while after the Generation 1 Transformers cartoon ended, and the Barricade of the live-action films was in fact voiced by Jess Harnell. Craig Bartlett has called out the show for their Hey Arnold! video, for spreading false information about the show such as him asking the network to remove an episode from rotation.
    • Their video about Transformers had many wrong claims too:
      • The most obvious one is when they say that Transformers Animated is the show where Bumblebee can't talk, when actually that is in Transformers Prime.
      • It also claims that the Diaclone toyline was a spinoff of the Microman one when they were actually two separate franchises... and when they talk about the Microchange Cassette Man that was used as basis for Soundwave they show the AM Radio Robot, the basis for Blaster!
      • They claim that the plot of the episode of The Transformers "Auto-Bop" was recycled from the G.I. Joe episode "Cold Snake". The title of the latter episode was actually "Cold Slither".
      • At a certain point they say that the Autobots befriend a Witwicky in "Every incarnation of the G1 series", giving the implication that the Michael Bay movies are intended as a G1 reboot, when they're their own thing.
      • In multiple moments, when talking about the toys, they often show pictures of newer toys implying that they're the original G1 figures, such as the Generations Jetfire and Masterpiece Ironhide. In a similar fashion, when mentioning that Brad Garrett voiced Trypticon, they show his Transformers: War for Cybertron incarnation rather than the G1 one, and when talking about Optimus Prime's death in the Marvel Comics they show panels from the IDW one-shot The Death of Optimus Prime.
      • Arcee is mentioned as the first female Autobot ever introduced to the franchise. Actually, the episode "The Search of Alpha Trion", who came before Arcee's introduction, already featured four female Autobots (Elita-1, Chromia, Firestar and Moonracer).
      • When saying that Frank Welker voiced Ravage, they say the growls were recycled for his appearance in the 2007 movie... except Ravage appeared only in Revenge of the Fallen.
      • Talking about Transformers: Robots in Disguise, they claim that both Bumblebee and Sideswipe have "Scissor doors" in altmode, just like the DeLorean. The kind of car doors the DeLorean haves are actually called "Seagull doors".
    • They also have a video talking about Dragon Ball Super where they get several facts that, obviously, weren't checked before it was recorded. For one, the narrator of the video has constant, yet also inconsistent, pronunciation & grammatical problems, not only with the Japanese words, but also English, mostly due to him obviously learning it as a secondary language after Spanish, as indicated by his accent. Then there's the facts. First, when Super started airing after Z finished. Second, they claimed that Akira Toriyama created Chrono Trigger, when he was actually just the art director. He's also just an illustrator and manga creator, as he's never helmed a video game. Then, it was Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan/Super Saiyan Blue, not Super Saiyan God that was spoiled in marketing. Then, Hit defeated Super Saiyan Blue Vegeta, not him as a regular Super Saiyan (this is even worse because they show animation from the show with his narration there).
    • Their "107 Facts about CatDog" video had two glaring mistakes made.
      • Lola Caricola is referred to as Lola Cherry Cola, which in the show was a case of Accidental Misnaming.
      • They claim that the Licensed Game Quest for the Golden Hydrant was based on the episode "The Golden Hydrant", when the only thing the game had in common with the episode was that the plot involved Cat wishing to make money off the Golden Hydrant.
    • Nedless to say they've gotten such backlash that sometimes made a video apologizing and going over their mistakes.
  • In Rooster Teeth's podcast, episode #371, Burnie goes on a rant about NASA's discovery of 55 Cancri E, complaining about how NASA can announce so much detailed information about the surface of an exo-planet over 40 light years away when they are still unable to confirm if there is or isn't a 9th unknown planet in our own solar system. Quite a lot of viewers chimed in to point out that it's easier to see planets in another solar system than in our own because a distant solar system can be observed all at once.note 
  • Invoked by this article from Game Informer about video game characters that don't deserve their own games. The list, which contains several humorous characters, ends with Pit, the protagonist of Kid Icarus. The writer, parodying the widespread confusion regarding who Pit was following the release of Super Smash Bros. Brawl, claimed that Pit was an original character, and therefore an odd choice to be in Smash Bros. The fact that 2 years later, a 3rd game would later come that would reuse Pit's design from Brawl might also count as Hilarious in Hindsight.
  • In the Feminist Frequency YouTube essay series, Anita claims that Betty DeVille from Rugrats is a Straw Feminist in her episode on the eponymous trope, which anyone who ever watched an episode of the show featuring her can tell you is blatantly false. Betty was nothing more than a masculine woman with a feminine husband. The fact that all the other examples in the video are correct just makes this even more infuriating for any Rugrats fan.
  • Some Miiverse posts are downright idiotic.
  • One YouTube user said that Pokémon: Diancie and the Cocoon of Destruction is the first time a PokeDex is used in a movie. Anyone who watches the regular anime knows that the device in question is a Town Map.
  • In this video from the YouTube channel TheRichest shows pictures of Pokemon in a circle. The Pokemon they show? Squirtle, Pikachu... And Mega Man. They thought Mega Man was a Pokemon.
    • In fact their video games videos are among their most criticized content such as another video as they also referred the mods as "apps" drawing much ire from the comments section.
  • The Happy Video Game Nerd:
    • In his second look at Eternal Darkness, he calls Pious Augustus a "badass Spartan dude" when the game directly says that he's a Roman centurion.
    • He doubts that the failure of EarthBound was because of the infamous "Because this game stinks" ads, citing (among other things) "the popularity of Captain Underpants (...) at the time". EarthBound was released in North America in 1994, but the first Captain Underpants book didn't come out until 1997.
  • This list of most unusual smartphones includes the "Nintendo Plus". There's no such thing as a Nintendo Plus; in fact, the device representing this fictitious phone is actually a New Nintendo 2DS XL, an upgraded version of the Nintendo 2DS.
  • In one of their top 10 lists, Jalopnik posted that front license plates are "useless". Actually, they are not. In many cases, speed cameras take pictures of a car's front. That is what front plates are needed for: identification of a car in such situations.
  • TheThings's list on 20 Things You Didn't Know About Peppa Pig is this trope pretty much taken to the extreme, as it looks like no research or effort was put into it. Here are the most egregious examples:
    • The network shown in the bottom-left corner is referred to as Cartoon Network in every single clip. The only relation Peppa Pig has had to CN was that it aired on the channel's short-lived preschool block Tickle-U from 2005 until 2007.note 
    • At one point, they refer to John Sparkes, the narrator, as "Johnny Sparkles". Yes, Johnny Sparkles. What makes this one particularly egregious is that they had said his name correctly thirty seconds earlier.
    • In the section with the voice actresses of Peppa, they completely get the years and number of episodes wrong: they claim that Lily Snowden-Fine was the voice of Peppa from 2004-2012 for 64 episodesnote , Cecily Bloom from 2006-2010 for 32 episodesnote  and Harley Bird from 2009-2016note .
    • The section with the other voice actors doesn't fare better: according to them, Morwenna Banks and Richard Ridings played Mummy Pig and Daddy Pig for 95 episodes when they've had their roles since the beginning of the show’s run, and John Sparkes, who played the narrator, was the only one who didn't change, appearing in 195 episodes (which isn't even close to the first four seasons' 208).
    • The section about the movie talks about Peppa's first cinema experience, The Golden Boots, which was apparently released on her tenth anniversary in 2015. Ten years after the show began was 2014. They also forget to mention Peppa's second theatrical experience in 2017 (which was advertised as her first). You know, the one which featured all-exclusive episodes and made almost twice as much money as The Golden Boots didnote .
  • Game Theory has had a few hiccups in research. Probably the most infamous is MatPat's miscalculation with Wario's Fartillery, stating that he's 10 feet tall.
    • For the real vs. fake boob episode, he used the character heights from Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Viewers were quick to point out that Brawl's heights are distorted and inconsistent from their canon sources.note 
    • For his episode on Ace Attorney, MatPat stated that Phoenix Wright is effectively a criminal, due to the seemingly dubious way he handles cases and crime scenes. To his credit, MatPat did a lot of research in how both American and Japanese court systems work. It's just that he failed to understand how the system in the series works.
    • The "Overwatch Vs Team Fortress 2" Deadlock video has so many inaccuracies that it would take a while to tell you all of them. However, some of the worst and most egregious failings include:
      • Second host Todd claiming "Kaboom indeed, you drunken wretch!" is a quote for the Demoman, when it's actually said by Spy, who is insulting Demo
      • Mat Pat claiming Overwatch on release is a more complete game than TF2 is in it's current state, despite TF2 having more maps and game modes, user submitted content, as well as more weapons per character.
      • Scout can apparently wear the Dragonborn Helmet in-game, which is just false, as it's a Heavy exclusive cosmetic. His "Evidence" seems to have been taken from this Gmod video.
      • Mat Pat's claim Team Fortress 2 was dying when Overwatch was released, only looking at the dropoff when the game released and then outright ignoring the stats from Steamcharts when the numbers went back up to normal levels. They even used the site to make the point! He also never directly compares TF2 and Overwatch's real-time playerbase numbers, as Blizzard doesn't have those sorts of figures available for public consumption, making the statement reckless to say, and makes Team Fortress 2 look like it lost more players than it actually had done.
      • His comment on the games' lack of diversity came off as unprofessional and ignorant of TF2's plot found in the comics, outright ignoring Ms. Pauling and The Administrator, both powerful women in male-dominated careers.
      • MatPat claiming playing support is unrewarding, despite their being stats related to getting heals and assists, as well as kills. Trust us, this isn't a complete list, but if you're absolutely curious, here's a link with pretty much all the video's faults.
    • His "For Honor" video has been blasted by the martial arts a thousand times over. Matt makes several mistakes, with the worst examples being; "Vikings were unarmored" (They weren't, in addition to shields and helmets Vikings would frequently make use of mail and lamellar. Even the cloth gambison they would use would be fairly cut resistant.) That European armor was heavy and clumsy (It really wasn't, Full Plate didn't weigh that much and was articulated with the mass distributed fairly evenly. Also not relevant since this was a comparison of 11th century equipment anyways) And worst of all that Japanese O-Yoroi was light and mobile. (It really wasn't, it was large and bulky weighing upwards of 60 pounds.) This mistake comes from him using Tosei Gusoku (not O-Yoroi) as an example...a 16th century design.
    • In the episode "Why You CAN'T Beat Super Smash Bros Ultimate!", Matt falsely claims there are 75 items in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, when there are in fact 71.note 
  • Did You Know Gaming's video on Spyro the Dragon makes the claim that Carlos Alazraqui, who voiced Spyro in the first game, also voiced Crash Bandicoot in his first three games, when it was actually Brendan O'Brien. This confusion likely stems from the fact that Jess Harnell, Crash's current voice actor, also voiced the titular dragon in Spyro: A Hero's Tail.
  • This infamous image became a minor internet meme because of this. People were quick to slap a banner that read "Americans: Yes they are that stupid", only for others to quickly point out the outlets on the power bar and extension cord are clearly European and therefore British people are clearly that stupid. Then others still pointed out the UK doesn't use that style of plug eithernote . People seem to have settled on "Americans ON VACATION: Yes they are that stupid."
  • The Visual novel database page of characters in Corpse Party/Videogame Blood drive claims that characters like Seiko Shinohara, Naho Saenoki or Sayaka Ooue have "avoidable deaths". Anybody that has played the game knows that they're already DEAD by the time the game begins. And at the end of the game nobody comes back to life... which brings the following question: DID THEY EVEN PLAY THE GAME?
  • The Nostalgia Critic:
    • His rant in Pearl Harbor, started by a soldier in the film yelling that he can't swim, about how insulting it was that (among other things) the film was claiming there were sailors in the Navy who couldn't swim drew a lot of ire because there actually were (and still are) many sailors and soldiers in the military who can't swim. Passing a swim test isn't mandatory, and many sailors actually intentionally avoided learning to swim in World War II so they wouldn't suffer as long if their ship was sank. The Internet Backdraft was particularly harsh because not only did this send the Critic off on a six minute long rant, but Doug's father actually was in the Navy and could have easily corrected him on it had Doug actually asked instead of assumed.
    • His review of Night of the Living Dead he mocks how the house the survivors are hiding in somehow has a "radio hook up" but the phone lines are down. Has nobody ever told him radios don't have "hook ups" but receive wireless transmissions, and that a radio will function as long as there is power?
  • Despite normally putting effort and care into researching his videos, horror YouTuber GloomyHouse does slip up on occasion:
    • In his video "YouTuber Missing for Over 10 Years", which explains the Louise Paxton ARG, he forgets to acknowledge that the story is fiction, making it seem like he didn't do his research and believed it was real. However, it's possible that he knew it was just a web series, and didn't say so because he thought it was common knowledge, which is evidenced by the fact that he refers to Paxton as "our main protagonist", something he would have been extremely unlikely to do if he actually thought it was real. He makes the same mistake in his video explaining the Ash Vlogs ARG as well.
    • He presents the CERN ritual prank as a possible real event, showing skepticism at the purpose of it, despite a literal one-second Google search leading to endless articles debunking it as a hoax.
    • The story of father and son cannibals Jack and Scott Fileman, as presented in his video "The Man Who Ate His Own Son", is actually a Spanish creepypasta, and the image is actually taken from a haunted house attraction, with the story written around the photo due to the two workers looking alike. This one can be forgiven, however, as despite no evidence to validate the story, finding hard proof of its origin takes a lot of digging.

    Western Animation 
  • Arthur's Perfect Christmas has Mr. Read planning on preparing a dinner based on what people would've eaten at the first Christmas. Arthur imagines having to eat a disgusting looking hunk of camel, but he needn't worry because camel is not kosher food. (Possibly justified, as he is eight years old.)
  • Archer is famous for its pop culture references, but the characters still screw up their facts a few times.
    • In one episode, when discussing the world's worst co-worker, Pam suggests Bishop from Aliens, even though Bishop was extremely helpful to Ripley and the marines, and served as one of the film's main protagonists. If they wanted an evil android co-worker from the Aliens franchise, they probably meant the traitorous Ash from the previous film, Alien.
    • While hunting in the snow, Archer is initially scared of the Predator, before reminding himself that he only hunts in tropical jungles. However, the whole premise of Predator 2 is a Predator loose in a city (though to be fair that city is Los Angeles in the middle of a heat wave).
  • The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius:
    • Jimmy in one episode refers to the Cretaceous period as the Cretaceous era (the era was the Mesozoic), and that it ended 200 million years ago. Any dinosaur-crazed eight-year-old could tell you that it ended 65 million years ago.
    • In "The Big Pinch", Thomas Edison was said to discover electricity, and bringing him into the present would cause anything electric to vanish. However, Thomas Edison was not the first to discover electricity, and he was not even the only person in the world to popularize the light bulb (Joseph Swan did that in the UK). Also, modern electric systems are based on Tesla's alternating current, not Edison's direct current.
    • Other examples include claiming that Chinese ginseng is a muscle relaxant, HDL Cholesterol is bad for you, Australia isn't a continent, and that people can never change because their personality is imprinted on their brain at birth.note 
  • An episode of Archie's Weird Mysteries had a mummy haunting the museum it was kept in. It turns out the mummy was vengeful because his fiancée left him because he kept putting off their wedding until after his pyramid was built. One, pyramids tended to take a pharaoh's whole life to build and sometimes weren't completed until after their death; two, pharaohs were married as children; and three, a pharaoh's marriage was arranged for them between them and one of their siblings, so no one could just decide to leave a marriage they were fed up with.
  • The main character in Back at the Barnyard is Otis, the male cow. He has udders.
  • Ben 10:
    • The episode The Galactic Enforcers claimed that the mysterious "Bicenthium alloy" was extremely rare on any planet except Earth... except the "alloy" was iron, the sixth most common element in the galaxy. And iron isn't an alloy.
    • In Ben 10: Omniverse, Skurd, a Super-Intelligent shapeshifting parasite the size of a golf ball who feeds on DNA, is stated to be an unicellular organism. The majority of unicellular organisms are much smaller in real life (most of them can't even be seen with the naked eyenote ), and none of them is complex enough to have even human intelligence.
  • Dan Vs. gives us "Sergeant Saskatchewan", an overly patriotic Canadian Captain Ersatz of Captain America... who wears the American sergeant emblem on his sleeve. Then seconds later Dan encounters a man asking for donations to save the Canadian geese. You'd think this guy would know it's "Canada" geese, not "Canadian" geese.
    • In "Dan Vs. New Mexico", it depicts skyscrapers in Santa Fe, the state covered in saguaro cacti, and the state fair in the middle of nowhere despite it being held annually in the much bigger city of Albuquerque. The most egregious example of CRF is Dan's plan to fill the hot-air balloons with hydrogen and then igniting the gas, causing an explosion. Despite Dan calling them "hot-air balloons" out loud, they act like oversized latex balloons, although the ends are never tied up after being filled. Even then, the balloons expand and burst like latex balloons. In real life, hot-air balloons float because of hot air, so it's not designed to be airtight. What produces the flame are cans of propane that sit in the basket, so he didn't need to go out of his way to hijack a hydrogen truck. Even without propane, he could have simply used a box cutter to shred the balloons so that none of them would fly.
  • DC Animated Universe:
    • Batman: The Animated Series:
      • In "The Lion and the Unicorn" Alfred tells Bruce he's in London, in which Bruce asks 'London England?' and Alfred replies 'There is only one', though there is a city of London in Ontario, Canada, and at least 8 Londons in the United States, among others. Though, as Alfred is British, this statement can be taken as him either not knowing about them, or simply regarding London, England as the only TRUE London.
      • In "Perchance to Dream" Batman figures out he is trapped in a dream when he is unable to read the books or newspapers; he later explains this by saying that the parts of the brain responsible for dreaming and reading are on different hemispheres and that it's impossible to read in a dream. This is a myth — the brain is far more complex than that, and it is entirely possible and completely commonplace for people to read in dreams.
      • There is some truth to this though. Trying to read a book is a suggested method of testing to see if you are dream, as words in a book while dreaming commonly will not make sense, be in an unknown language, be completely absent, or will change when you are not looking at them, though it is possible none of those things will happen.
    • Justice League:
      • Some Atlanteans attempt to melt the polar ice caps to destroy the surface world. As in all of it would be submerged. There is not enough water on Earth, whether solid, liquid, or gas, to even come close to accomplishing this.
      • In the finale, Clark asks the Thanagarians about the machine they're building 'in the Gobi desert'. Later, the location shows up on the Watchtower's radars in northern Africa. That's the Sahara Desert - the Gobi is in eastern Asia.
  • The Fairly OddParents!:
  • In the King of the Hill episode "Bobby Goes Nuts", when trying to punish Bobby for kicking Hank in the groin, Peggy gets kicked in the groin by Bobby and just smirks at him when in reality it should have hurt just as much despite her lack of testicles. Maybe she was bluffing...
  • A terrible offender is The Mummy: The Animated Series in the episode "The Cloud People". Lake Titicaca is described as both puma-head shaped and as being found below the ruins of Macchu Picchu. A portion of the lake's southern bank vaguely resembles a cat's head in profile, but only if viewed from the air while flying north-to-south. The whole thing, not so much, and it's still southeast of Machu Picchu, not below it.
  • This official Mother's Day greeting from the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic franchise is a case of them failing to research their own work. Presumably the marketing team missed the memo that Applejack's parents have been implied to be dead since practically the beginning of the show, or that five months ago The Perfect Pear aired which, just short of saying "they're dead", confirmed it.
    • The Ultimate Guide made a similar mistake in listing Rainbow Dash's family as "a mystery", in spite of Parental Glideance introducing her parents Bow Hothoof and Windy Whistles.
  • Two of the Scooby-Doo movies hit this particularly hard, mainly because the two movies between them got their respective monsters BACKWARDS. Chupacabra is a reptilian hematophage that preys on goats. The Australian Yowie is supposedly a large humanoid creature, along the lines of Bigfoot and the Yeti. Monster of Mexico says that Chupie is Bigfoot, and Legend of the Vampire that the Yowie is a vampire. It's easy to think that they picked monsters that they thought nobody knew, but Chupacabra at least is rather well-known.
  • Popeye:
    • Maybe it's a case of creative liberty, but the Al Brodax cartoon "I Yam Wot I Yamnesia" posits that if two people bump heads with each other, they switch personalities and voices. Wimpy diagnoses this as amnesia.
    • In the Famous Studios short "Big Bad Sindbad" of 1952, Popeye and his nephews go to a museum where they are watching statues of some famous sailors across history. Among them is, apparently Noah, and the pedestal under his statue reads "The First Great Sailor"; Noah built his ark not to sail, but to take cover from the great flood along with his family, and the animals that came in pairs.
  • South Park: In the episode "Go God Go", a Catholic family scolds Principal Victoria for teaching evolution at her school. The Catholic church supports evolution (as do countless Protestant denominations), and Catholic schools do indeed teach it.
  • In the X-Men episode "Days of Future Past, Part 2", Gambit travels to Washington, D.C.. But the monitor shows the state of Washington (with Washington, D.C. captioned right below).
  • Even Ms. Frizzle on The Magic School Bus has gotten her lessons wrong on occasion, as this video shows.
  • In the "Pinky's Plan" episode of Pinky and the Brain, Pinky attempts to throw a surprise party for Brain featuring various world leaders. This includes Prime Minister Brian Mulroney of Canada, who by that time (1996) had been out of power for about four years.

In-Universe and Invoked examples

  • A TV spot for the film Gamer became an Internet hit when it claimed that "the last time Gerard Butler kicked this much ass was 300 years ago." note 

    Anime & Manga 
  • An unusual example in the Ranma ½ manga. Gosunkugi is searching for Ranma's weakness and the manga's supposedly omniscient narrator takes the reader through a montage of what the Tendo residents have to say, including "The Tendo Family Pets". Only Soun protests that he is not a pet, but the panda and pig are Genma Saotome and Ryoga Hibiki respectively in their cursed forms. Literally no one in the panel is a pet.

    Comic Books 
  • Ambush Bug once made a huge error In-Universe. Seeing a young blonde woman in a familiar costume flying by, Ambush Bug immediately realized that some malevolent magic or Red Kryptonite had turned his "pal" Superman into a girl, and that Superman desperately needed the Bug's help. Somehow, Ambush Bug was completely ignorant of the existence of Supergirl, who was naturally mystified by the encounter. (Supergirl, In-Universe, was publicly known and quite famous in her own right at the time.)note 
  • Jack Of Fables often notes the hero's lack of understanding of history or science. He boasts of himself before a battle as being like Napoleon at Waterloo or the defenders of the Alamo "and like them, I will be victorious."
  • Team Fortress 2 comics:
    • In Ring of Fired #1, when the Demoman and his sentient sword the Eyelander are watching the show Ghost D.A., the title ghost character disappears with a "doodily-doodily-doot" noise. The Eyelander, which is possessed by a ghost, points out that it never does that and questions whether the writers are actually ghosts. It has more to complain about when the TV ghost puns "the defense rests... in peace."
      Eyelander: Ugh. "The defense rests"? He's the @$%ing prosecution! Ghost D.A.! "District Attorney!" It's in the title of the @$%ing show!
    • Turns out the entire town of Teufort suffers from a major case of this in Unhappy Returns. The Mayor is apparently completely oblivious to what he can and can't do in his position, apparently thinking he's allowed to force someone to become a fake-Italian, and hang people without a trial. No one else in the town sees a problem with this. This is due to them having drunk lead-contaminated water for over a generation.

    Comic Strips 
  • Calvin and Hobbes:
    • Calvin has to do a report on bats, but being the typical lazy six-year-old that he is, he does absolutely no research on them. He assumes bats are bugs because "they fly, right? They're ugly and hairy, right?" Despite literally everyone who hears this telling Calvin that bats aren't bugs, he refuses to listen (“Look, who’s giving the report, you chowderheads… or me?”). Predictably, he fails the assignment. Bill Watterson said in a commentary that one of the nice things about writing this strip is that he didn't need to know more than a lazy six-year-old, and after writing the story got sent more information on bats than he ever wanted to know.
    • Calvin and Susie are assigned to be partners on a project about the planet Mercury. The following is Calvin's only contribution, which he wrote the morning before class despite having a week to work on his report:
    Calvin: The planet Mercury was named after a Roman god with winged feet. Mercury was the god of flowers and bouquets, which is why today he is a registered trademark of FTD florists. Why they named a planet after this guy, I can't imagine. (sees Susie ready to pound him) ...Um, back to you, Susie.

    Fan Works 
  • Occurs in-universe in Queen of All Oni with Lung. Not only did his Evil Plan revolve around the stubborn-as-a-mule Jade submitting to his will, he clearly has no idea about the curse that only allows her to summon her Co-Dragons.
  • In an in-universe example, the Lemony Narrator of Equestria: A History Revealed seems to fulfill this trope in spades. To her credit, she does do research, but she blatantly ignores what is stated in favor of her own opinions, going as far as to cross out sections of quotes that don't agree with her view.
  • A Brief History of Equestria: Apparently it's common — due to their rivalry prior to and during the Lake Trot Crisis — to portray Viscount Arsenic as Lady Cripps' father, who abandoned her mother after a brief affair. This despite the fact that at the time of said affair, Arsenic was two years old.
  • The fictional authors' works in Bleach: Fan Works have several of varying severity. For example, Christina doesn't realize who Oshima (an extremely minor character who tries to threaten Ichigo, only to get taken down by Chad), while Jolene Myer has Ichigo's father called "Barnubus" rather than Isshin, and claims that Masaki divorced him when the twins were born (instead of getting killed by Grand Fisher and Yhwach, although they most likely couldn't have known that when this installment was uploaded).
  • Turnabout Storm:
    • Phoenix Wright makes a loud objection during the trial when it's revealed that the decisive evidence against the defendant is a storm cloud, mocking the prosecution for suggesting that his client could move that cloud around and make it shoot lightning at will. Too bad he happens to be in Equestria, a world where controlling the weather is a common sense fact.
      Phoenix: Oh... Hehe... Sorry! My mistake...
      Twilight: Maybe you should have... Oh, I don't know, studied!?
      Phoenix: I said I was sorry!
    • Shortly after he makes another mistake in trying to contradict a statement, pointing out that the thunder is heard after the lightning strike, not at the same time. Not in Equestria, though.
  • Used intentionally and Played for Laughs in the Twilight fic Third Wheel. (The narrator is something of a ditz.)
    [Discussing Bella Swan's family] So the acorn didn't fall too far from the pine tree.
  • In With This Ring In-Universe example with Senator Knight's proposal to ban magic after the 'deaths of thousands of children' in Displaced. Senator Knight didn't know that literally anyone can learn magic and he could found this out by asking Zatara, a Justice League member with a public address who is a magic specialist. His name became synonymous with obliviousness and ignorance when Orange Lantern calls him out on it in a live interview.
  • Supper Smash Bros: Mishonh From God shows various examples in relation to the games that Smash Bros are based upon. The most egregious examples are in 'The REEL Sekwel', where she believes Pacman is a Pokémon and Captain Falcon is a villain in Fire Emblem.
  • This Bites!: Shiki apparently didn't bother to do a thorough background check of his army during Strong World. Hence, he failed to take into account that his most powerful subordinate crew, the Barto Club, led by Super Rookie "Black Bart" Bartolomeo, originates from East Blue, the sea that Shiki is planning to destroy. Bartolomeo uses this opportunity to infiltrate the Golden Lion Pirates, sabotaging Shiki's operations and feeding information back to his allies in the New World Masons, and makes sure to rub Shiki's mistake right in his face when he inevitably reveals himself in the climax of the arc.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Bluto's speech in Animal House gives us this gem:
    "Over? Did you say "over"? Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!"
    "Forget it, he's rollin'."
  • S.H.I.E.L.D. of all people have this at the end of Captain America: The First Avenger. After Steve Rogers is unfrozen after crashing the HYDRA Valkyrie in 1945, they try to ease him into the present day by building a fake 1940's hospital room, complete with a 1940's baseball game broadcast "live" on the radio and a woman in period-appropriate attire entering to greet him. However, Steve immediately notices something is wrong — because the "live" baseball game is from 1941, he knows because he was there. Cue him breaking out and experiencing massive culture-shock at 21st Century Times Square. Nice going, S.H.I.E.L.D. Sharp-eyed fans have noted that's not the only thing wrong with the scene—the woman's hair is wrong, her attire isn't quite period-appropriate, and so on... and so they've theorized the many minor mistakes are because Nick Fury wanted to know how much sharpness Captain America lost during his long sleep, making this an Invoked Trope.
  • In Dr. Strangelove, the Russian ambassador explains that the Soviets built their world-ending machine because they feared a "Doomsday-gap" when they "discovered" that the Americans were building one. When the US President truthfully rebukes that as a ludicrous fantasy, the ambassador replies: "Our source was The New York Times."
  • In Hitman, 47 meets with an arms dealer under a false identity. When his cover is secretly blown, the dealer attempts to intimidate 47 by showing off some of his weapons and even threatening to kill one of his prostitutes with a pistol. In so doing he misidentifies aspects of every gun he picks up (such as calling an M4A1 Assault Rifle with an M203 Under Barrel Grenade Launcher as an "M203 with under barrel grenade launcher"). 47, not the slightest bit intimidated, points it out to him.
  • Snatch.: Tommy says to Turkish that he shouldn't drink milk because it's not in sync with evolution and that human digestion hasn't gotten used to drinking dairy products yet. Not only is this complete nonsense on every level (human infants all drink milk, and lactase persistence is one of the best-known examples of divergent evolution between human populations after our exodus from Africa), but Turkish seems aware of it as well.
    Turkish: Well fuck me. What have you been reading.
  • Actually serves as a plot point in I Still Know What You Did Last Summer. The characters win a vacation on a radio contest by answering the question "What is the capital of Brazil?" with "Rio de Janeiro", while the actual capital is Brasília. It is however revealed later that the trip was a set up, so they would have won regardless of what answer they gave.
  • Trading Places has this example from the heroes' Massive Multi Player Scam:
    Coleman: Let me see, you would be from Austria. Am I right?
    Ophelia: No, I am Inga from Sweden.
    Coleman: Sweden? ...But you're wearing ...Lederhosen.
    Ophelia: Ja, from Sweden.
  • The title character in The 40-Year-Old Virgin displays his complete lack of sexual experience when he mentions that breasts feel like bags of sand.

  • A recurring bit of Adrian Mole is that Adrian (a classic case of Small Name, Big Ego) never bothers researching his writings and thus can't grasp why his "genius" work is dismissed by others.
    • He had a character do a "day trip" from England to China that was just walking on the Great Wall as that's the extent of Adrian's knowledge of the country.
    • He thinks the Sistine Chapel was painted by Rembrandt in Venice.
    • He complains that Jane Austen is "too old-fashioned and should write something more modern."
    • He thinks Evelyn Waugh was a woman, doesn't grasp why Pandora has a nickname of "the box" and is constantly mixing up various artistic names and their achievements.
    • There's also how Adrian prides himself on being a master chef but it's clear he has little to no idea how to make some rather obvious dishes.
    • One segment has Rosie becoming a Goth, which is made out to be a cult, complete with not washing and worshipping a "Goth god." However, it's indicated that instead of the author, it's Rosie herself who has no idea what a Goth really is.
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events:
    • The villains of The Slippery Slope proudly boast about how they control "two of the greatest mammals: the lions and the eagles!" Klaus calls them out on their error, but they don't care.
    • Earlier in the same book, Esme defines "individual practitioner" as "a life of crime". Even baby Sunny knows that she's completely off the mark (and, funnily enough, provides the correct definition).
  • At the end of the Belisarius Series, top spymaster Narses is sent to China as an ambassador. He asks which kingdom he should be heading for, as there are sixteen kingdoms making up China at the time. Only one problem: the Sixteen Kingdoms period had ended a century earlier, and never had more than ten kingdoms present at any one time. The person he's asking says it doesn't matter (the important thing is that he not be present in India anymore), but that he'll find there are rather fewer kingdoms to choose from.
  • Encyclopedia Brown:
    • Every book has a chapter where Wilford Wiggins tries to scam a crowd with some sort of big project or such. Every time, Encyclopedia is there to point out the huge error that makes the whole thing useless (such as trying to sell a dinosaur dig with a drawing of a dinosaur attacking a caveman). Justified in that Wilford is a high school dropout.
    • Bugs Meany falls into this with a few of his scams. He once tries to sell an "authentic" Civil War sword, proudly showing the engraving of it being presented after "The First Battle of Bull Run." Encyclopedia dryly points out it would have been odd to engrave that when no one knew there would be a second battle.note 
  • This is a key point of Skinny Dip. Suspecting (wrongly) that his wife is onto his major scam doctoring water samples, marine scientist Chaz shoves her off a cruise ship, expecting the Gulf Stream to wash her out to sea. However (as the book's own jacket synopsis sums up), Chaz "is the only marine scientist on Earth who doesn't know which way the Gulf Stream flows." Instead of out to sea, a ticked-off Joey survives to shore and out for payback. It takes an offhand comment from a woman he's picking up at a bar for Chaz to realize his error.
  • In the Harry Harrison novel Rebel in Time, a racist U.S. colonel goes back in time to help the South win the Civil War. His plan is to instigate a rebellion armed with submachine guns and seize key Union command towns to help achieve an early victory. A black soldier follows him and in their final confrontation, asks why Wesley would do this when John Brown tried it and failed spectacularly. Wesley's dying words: "Who's John Brown?" Going over Wesley's possessions, the soldier discovers that Wesley (who barely passed his history classes in school) just happened to be going off the one book on the Civil War that doesn't mention John Brown or his raid on Harper's Ferry.
  • The Catcher in the Rye:
    • Holden Caulfield writes a paper about ancient Egypt, which reads thus: "The Egyptians were an ancient race of Caucasians residing in one of the northern sections of Africa. The latter as we all know is the largest continent in the Eastern Hemisphere. The Egyptians are extremely interesting to us today for various reasons. Modern science would still like to know what the secret ingredients were that the Egyptians used when they wrapped up dead people so that their faces would not rot for innumerable centuries. This interesting riddle is still quite a challenge to modern science in the twentieth century." That is the paper, in its entirety.
    • The title of the book comes from Holden mistaking a line from the song "Comin' Through the Rye". He thinks it's "If a body catch a body comin' through the rye", but it's really "If a body meet a body comin' through the rye."
  • Ender's Shadow: Bean's nemesis Achilles thinks that Josef Stalin was promoted by Vladimir Lenin then imprisoned and killed him, when in reality Lenin died of a stroke while urging his followers to not put Stalin in charge. His mistaken belief may be due to his own lack of schooling coupled with his desire to become a dictator twisting his memory of history.
  • An in-universe example from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, when the police drug "expert" tries to explain why a marijuana cigarette is colloquially referred to as a "roach".
    "What the fuck are these people talking about?" my attorney whispered. "You'd have to be crazy on acid to think a joint looked like a goddamn cockroach!"
  • From Gordon Korman's Son of the Mob 2: Vince is heading off to film school in California with his girlfriend and best friend and decides to chronicle their road trip in script form. His girlfriend immediately points out one minor problem: he has them driving west into the rising sun.
  • Harry Potter: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them mentions a Kappa, and states it's Japanese. One of Harry's notes next to it says "Snape hasn't read this book either", since Snape identifies the Kappa as Mongolian in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
  • The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy:
    • Ford Prefect chooses his name — the name of a rather mediocre British car — apparently on the assumption that cars were the dominant species on the planet. The movie adaptation extrapolates from this the scene of Ford and Arthur's first meeting, Arthur saving Ford from attempting to shake hands with a car. note 
    • The Cutaway Gag sequence about the Vl'Hurg-G'Gugvuntt fleet that attempted to invade the Earth, only to be accidentally swallowed by a small dog in its entirety "due to a terrible miscalculation of scale".
  • How to Bicycle to the Moon to Plant Sunflowers: A Simple but Brilliant Plan in 24 Easy Steps is a picture book about a boy's plan to go to the moon by bicycling and planting sunflowers there. Obviously, the plan would be impossible to complete. For example, it would take a long time to reach the moon on a bicycle, there's nothing on the moon to support life, and the bicycle would burn up in the atmosphere. This is somewhat Justified, as the boy is a child.
  • The Hunger Games: Delivered by none other than Effie Trinket: "Well, if you put enough pressure on coal it turns to pearls." That should be diamonds. And even then it's not accurate; it's graphite that turns to crystallized carbon under pressure, but that doesn't sound as punchy.
  • Pick Up Sticks: This trope is the murder motive. It seems the killer didn't realize the land he'd bought for a new vacation resort was part of the Appalachian Trail. Thatcher points out at the end of the novel that if the killer had done any local research, he would have learned that. note 
  • In Stephen King's novella The Body, the 12-year-old protagonist wrote a bunch of stories about Americans trying to take a French town from the Nazis... in 1942. Only two years later did he find out that the Allies didn't land in France until 1944.
  • In There's a Boy in the Girls' Bathroom the titular boy gets in an altercation with a few other boys. Afterwards, he claims he gave one of them three black eyes.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Most epiodes of Amazing Animals have a segment where the unseen narrator has Henry give a report on something related to the subject of the episode. The reports are always full of ridiculously incorrect claims about animals, such as claiming basking sharks eat entire islands, passenger pigeons disappeared because they went to outer space, and animals go on strike when the rainforest floods. The narrator then corrects Henry and explains the truth.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Whenever Andrew flexes his storyteller muscles, he'll usually include events of which he has no first-hand knowledge (i.e. previous seasons) in his spiel and is thus occasionally widely off the mark. For example, when he talks to the Potential Slayers about Faith he claims that she killed a Vulcan, "the most pacifist and logical of races". Flashback to Faith locked in deadly hand-to-hand combat with a Vulcan. In reality she killed a volcanologist. When one of the Potentials tries to correct him, he says "Why would she kill someone who studies Vulcans?"
  • An episode of Class has Matteusz draw a comparison between the characters' situation (fighting amongst themselves after they're forced to tell the truth to each other) and Susan Pevensie from The Chronicles of Narnia, citing the scene in which she magically overhears a friend gossiping about her (which ruins their friendship). Except this didn't happen to Susan, it happened to Lucy in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader.
  • Stephen Colbert of The Colbert Report uses this intentionally and mixes it with Insane Troll Logic for laughs. This is really the entire premise of the show.
  • Downton Abbey: Cora (mother of three girls) grumbles about having daughters: "you think it's going to be like Little Women but instead they're at each other's throats." It must have been a while since she read the book, since at least two of the little women (Jo and Amy) were constantly at each other's throats.
  • One scene from Flight of the Conchords's HBO series has a racist fruit vendor mistake Australian stereotypes for New Zealander ones.
    Jemaine: I'm a person. Bret's a person. You're a person. That person over there's a person. And each person deserves to be treated like a person.
    Vendor: That's a great speech. Too bad New Zealanders are a bunch of cocky a-holes descended from criminals and retarded monkeys.
    Jemaine: Hey, you're thinking of Australians.
    Vendor: No no no, New Zealanders, "throw another shrimp on the barbie", ride around on your kangaroos all day.
    Jemaine: No-no-no, that's Australians. You're thinking of Australians; that's not us.
    Vendor: I've totally confused you with Australians, I feel terrible. It's just your accents are just kinda similar.
    Jemaine: Our accents are completely different. They're like: "Where's the cahh?" and we're like "where's the cahh?"
  • How I Met Your Mother: Barney's "Platinum Rule" was based off his belief that the Golden Rule was "Love your neighbor." The other characters were quick to point out that it's actually "Treat others as you yourself would want to be treated."
  • Mystery Science Theater 3000:
    • Crow doing this trope is a Running Gag. Crow makes a documentary about The American Civil War. Titled Crow T. Robot's Bram Stoker's The Civil War, it opens with this line... which is actually pretty much the film's high point when it comes to historical accuracy:
      Crow: The Civil War was a war that took place during a certain period in our nation's history. When, exactly? No one can say.
    • He's also done reports about Rutherford B. Hayes ("Serving heroically in the Civil War, Hayes later admitted that it was in the army he first tasted human flesh.") and a PSA about how to treat women that mostly asserts that women are a cryptozoological phenomenon, like Bigfoot, except for the very, very end:
      Crow: Ah.... Oh, um, yes. So anyway Mike, in conclusion, in the off chance that you do run into a woman, uh, you know, treat her with respect and stuff.
      Mike: You know, Crow, you do know women. Now what about Pearl?
      Crow: OK, so one woman exists. That means all women exist?
    • Tom Servo is also guilty of this, in the episode The Skydivers. During the prologue he puts on a planetarium show, giving us such gems as referring to the speed of light as "well over 500 miles an hour" (which is true, but in the same way it's true to say the Pacific Ocean is more than a gallon of water: the speed of light is well over 600 million miles per hour) and calling Mars "the brightest star in our galaxy."
  • NewsRadio: Bill, while trying to stage an office rebellion, shouts, "Do you think the Pilgrims really cared about all the tea they dumped into Baltimore Harbor?" It may well be a shout-out to Bluto's speech in Animal House.
    • He attributed the line "gather ye rosebuds while ye may" to John Keats in 1776. It was Robert Herrick, 1648, and neither Herrick (died 1674) nor Keats (born 1795) were even alive in 1776. He claimed his ancestors came to America on board the Mayflower "from...Portugal, or something", and - in what is definitely a shout-out, yelled that he "didn't expect the Danish Inquisition!" He's the show's resident Know-Nothing Know-It-All.
  • Shawn Spencer of Psych may be a genius at solving crimes but it's shown he has a really bad record with actual research stuff. It's not that he's stupid so much as he's lazy at times and other times makes the mistake of thinking being an ace at deduction means you always have all the right answers.
    • Shawn starts writing a book report on Charlotte's Web without finishing the book. He says there's no reason to as from the first four chapters "it's obvious Wilbur wins the fair and he and Charlotte live happily ever after."
    • Shawn is about to accuse a guy of murder before Henry takes him aside and points out the guy is innocent because of a detail in the police report Shawn didn't bother reading.
    • Shawn complains over getting a failing grade on a major report he wrote about a past U.S. President. Gus points out that the "report" was all about Kevin Kline's character from Dave. Shawn seems to be under the impression Kline was playing a real President.
    • See also the countless times Shawn mixes up nationalities.
  • Baroski correcting the Sons of Anarchy on the use of the term "Persian" is both intentional and unintentional. The country has officially been called Iran by the West since 1935 and by the East long before that. However, some of its people culturally self-identify as Persian. It would be acceptable to call the pornographers Persian if they identify as such, but it's never made clear if this is the case. If the Sons are also unaware, it would be better to refer to them as Iranian (while most Iranians are ethnically Persian, minorities of Arabs, Azeris and Kurds also exist). Baroski's claim that "Persia hasn't been a country since 637 AD" is incorrect; the Persian Empire fell that year, but that doesn't mean it ceased to exist as a country.
  • Star Trek: The Original Series: Played for Laughs with Pavel Chekov, who sometimes gets his Russian history wrong, claiming just about everything to be a Russian invention. That was probably what he was taught, though, as this was before The Great Politics Mess-Up, and the USSR in the 1960s really did have this attitude in its education. According to Diane Duane's novels, he's joking, as when he claims that the roller coaster is a Russian invention and is not believed he protests that this time it's true.note 
  • Played with on Legends of Tomorrow as the time-traveling team finds things that may seem wrong. But given this is a super-hero universe where history has taken different turns, it can actually work out and often a "failure" is just a sign of time going wrong.
    • When they travel to a time matching Camelot, historian Nate tells the others Camelot was only a myth. Also, he insists on dressing just as books say people did in this time and mocks the others for "looking like you're at a Renaissance Faire." Cue them met by knights from a very much real Camelot who think Nate is a leper thanks to his outfit. It turns out Camelot exists because another time traveler had previously recreated it based on the myth.
  • Supernatural: Dean loves cowboys (perhaps a bit too much), but he has no idea how they dressed.
    Cas: Is it customary to wear a blanket?
    Dean: It's a serape. And yes.
    • He refers to a poncho as a "serape" (they're similar, sort of, but they're constructed differently, worn differently, and were invented by two different cultures), treats it as street clothes (it was cold-weather gear), and wears it in the Midwest (it was Southwestern). Naturally, when the brothers have to travel back in time to the days of the cowboy:
    Cowboy: Nice blanket.
  • Moesha has her paying for this. After getting a job for the local paper, Moesha runs into a young boy who talks of being illiterate and from a terrible home and struggling to get by. Moesha writes his story and it's soon a hit and talk of it being picked up by national papers. At which point, the boy shows up in nice clothes and proceeds to read the story, revealing he's a pathological liar looking for attention. Telling this to the paper's editor, Moesha expects him to blame the kid like she has. Instead, the editor rightly puts the blame on Moesha for just writing the story without bothering to do any checking that would have easily revealed the truth. He tells her to forget writing again until she figures out basic journalistic skills.
  • This sketch from That Mitchell and Webb Look. Many faults are pure and simple Artistic License – Sports, but not all:
    • "West Germany, famously a bunch of cheats" references East Germany's history with performance-enhancing drugs. And "Cricket? 'Ere in Yorkshire?" makes no sense as cricket is really popular in Yorkshire.
    • The Ashes isn't a tournament with "second rounds" and "semi-finals". It's a revered test cricket series between the national teams of England and Australia. The West Indies, the Dallas Cowboys (an American football team), West Germany (a country that ceased existing for 17 years at the time of airing and in which most people have no idea what cricket actually is) and Pisswiddle Steel Batters are ineligible. Manchester United is an Association Football team.
    • Mitchell and Webb have a whole series of skits based on two screenwriters who never, ever, do any research. The medical drama in particular is hilarious.
      "Now he's poorly from too much electric."
    • There's also the archaeologist who makes the incredible find of an ancient Roman... videotape. It appears to show several people having a toga party, but he and other researchers talk about the incredible discoveries they're making, while one stares at them in disbelief, and eventually brings up the obvious. He's then guilt-tripped into going along with it.
  • The Young Ones:
    • When Rick is trying desperately to recall his history lessons, he finishes the statement "Crop rotation in the 14th century was considerably more widespread after..." with a year that isn't even in the 14th century, 1172. Though thanks to the qualifier of "after", he is not technically wrong.note .
    • Neil never sleeps because he thinks sleep causes cancer.
  • Characters on The West Wing are consistently getting called out for this; it's usually Played for Laughs. Perhaps the best example occurs in the pilot episode, where Sam Seaborn is asked to speak to Mallory's fourth-grade class about the history of the White House, on which subject he's clueless. Meeting them in the Roosevelt Room, he fakes it, saying the room is named after "our eighteenth president, Franklin Delano Roosevelt." After listening to Sam spew out factoids for a few moments, Mallory asks to speak to him outside the room:
    Mallory: I'm sorry to be rude, but are you a moron?
    Sam: In this particular area, yes.
    Mallory: The 18th president was Ulysses S. Grant and the Roosevelt Room was named for Theodore.
    Sam: Really?
    Mallory: There's like a six-foot painting on the wall of Teddy Roosevelt.note 
    Sam: I should have put two and two together.
    Mallory: Yes.
    Sam: The thing is, while there really are a great many things on which I can speak with authority, I'm not good at talking about the White House.
    Mallory: You're the White House Deputy Communications Director and you're not good at talking about the White House?
    Sam: Ironic, isn't it?
He has a point. He deals with political messaging. The person to ask for information about the White House as a building would be a tour guide, which means that whoever decided he needed to talk to the class about it had their own failure.
  • The Last Man on Earth: In-universe. OK, fine, Tucson is Phil #1's hometown, but as Phil #2 points out, it's high on the list of the worst possible choices for a post-apocalyptic abode on the North American continent.
  • When Power Rangers Ninja Storm's Rangers first enter the fray, the usually smart Lothor protests that nobody told him there were Power Rangers on Earth (he's referring to active Rangers, as his initial plan was based on attacking the Ninja Academies specifically to prevent the activation of any Power Ranger team he knew of, but still...).
  • The pilot for 2018's For the People has newly minted public defender Jay defending a man accused of some minor fraud. His opening statement notes how the man needs to be on bail to take care of his twin brother who's dying of cancer. Prosecutor Kate then stands up to note that the defendant's brother doesn't have cancer and doesn't exist and the man is a long-standing con artist whose "minor fraud" involved creating a fake agency to bilk hundreds of people out of their money. She openly tells a stunned Jay that "it's not hard to look this up if you do a little research" as he realizes too late he's in over his head.
  • On Deception (2018), Cameron Black's team of magic helpers is aiding him in FBI investigations. Dina tells the young member Jordan to start reading up on Agatha Christie in order to understand murders. When Jordan replies that "I looked her up on Twitter and didn't see an account", Dina has to restrain herself from smacking him.
    • Twitter has had an Agatha Christie account advertising her works since 2009.
  • On Scream Queens (2015), Chad gives a speech against cancelling Halloween because of a serial killer, referring to John F. Kennedy. He somehow knows Kennedy wrote a book called Profiles in Courage, but everything else...
    Chad: As our great 60th president John Kennedy, Jr. said, "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself."
    Munsch: [after he's done] I have no idea how you got into this college.
  • On The Resident, arrogant doctor turned chief Bell is meeting three candidates for a major position at the hospital, impressed by each of their credentials. Head of the hospital board Marshall interrupts to show how Bell hasn't done his homework: One CEO is under investigation for tax evasion; a second claims to have degrees from Harvard and Wharton but actually graduated from a college in Arizona; and the third has basically driven his hospital to bankruptcy with his terrible methods. Marshall tells the humiliated Bell to "stick with what you know" and let Marshall handle the business side.

  • MC Historical Inaccuracy's verse in Jon La Joie's WTF Collective 2 is based on this trope. It's better heard than read, but here are the lyrics:
    Yo, I'm MC Historical Inaccuracy
    I drop lyrical bombs like Hiroshima in '73
    I write rhymes like Shakespeare when he wrote Anne Frank's Diary
    Which is about the Civil War of 1812 in Germany
    I'm like the Spanish Inquisition when they killed Jesus
    And Abe Lincoln's suicide was the theme for my thesis
    Like Moses when I focus, I can split the Red Sea
    Which he did in 1950 with the Chinese Army
  • The Pink Floyd song "Have a Cigar" has the singer (evidently a recording industry executive) sing the lines,
    Well I've always had a deep respect
    And I mean that most sincere
    The band is just fantastic
    That is really what I think
    Oh by the way, which one's Pink?note 

  • A Bob & Ray sketch has Bob interviewing the author of a History of the United States. It turns out that the 1,100-page tome contains numerous glaring errors, including Abraham Lincoln driving to his inauguration in an automobile, the Civil War breaking out in 1911, and the nation's original capital being located in Bailey's Mistake, Maine. The author readily admits it's "a shabby piece of work", but quickly adds that it's leather-bound.
  • In the episode The Big Big Big Ben Bungle of the British political satire The Men from the Ministry Mr. Lamb refers to the "Hunchback of Amsterdam"

    Tabletop Games 
  • Warhammer40000: The Imperial Guardman's Uplifting Primer is hilariously filled with these, presenting the enemies of man as easy to defeat by the common soldiery. Features gems such as "Ork tusks can easily be pulled out of their jaws", "the Tau are evolved from cattle and will spook at loud noises", and a magnificent illustration of a Guardsman looking around a corner like a guy who showed up early for a Scooby Stack. Those are actually partially true, though. Orks have shark-like teeth that are constantly being shed and could conceivably be pulled out fairly easily while the Tau are descended from grazing ruminants and display many vestiges of that past (spooking at loud noises NOT being one of them). It also includes a few nods to the series' Gameplay and Story Segregation; for instance, the entry on Orks mentions that despite being musclebound and much bigger the typical Ork is inexplicably no stronger than a typical human (hilariously false in the fiction, completely true on the tabletop). Indeed, a common theory is that the Primer is lying to you on purpose ("Genestealers are slow and sluggish") in order to raise morale. Any company worth even half its salt has a few units of Veterans who know what fighting in a Cosmic Horror Story is really like (and one Ciaphas Cain line notes that some of the Guardsmen are reading their primers "for inspiration or amusement").

    Video Games 
  • Portal 2 has the Fact Sphere, a corrupted core created to distract GLaDOS, and ultimately used in the boss fight against Wheatley to corrupt him. It constantly spouts random facts, few of which are actually true. A whole list of all of them can be found here (Beware of endgame spoilers).
  • Team Fortress 2:
    • Played for laughs in Meet the Soldier. The Soldier starts with a (correct) quote from Sun Tzu and The Art of War, but then goes on to say that Sun Tzu invented fighting, perfected it, and used his fight money to herd two of every animal onto a boat and beat the crap out of them.
      Soldier: And from that day forward, anytime a bunch of animals are together in one place, it's called a TZU! ...Unless it's a farm!
    • In Meet the Director, it's shown that the Soldier went on even more about Sun Tzu. The director had to point out that Sun Tzu never wrote books on how to punch out someone's ribcage.
  • Bravely Default: Ringabel gives a lengthy analysis to Agnes and Edea about the various sheep races after encountering one. Then Tiz explains that the animal they were looking at wasn't a sheep, but a goat.
  • Grand Theft Auto IV has Playboy X, the leader of a drug crew who fancies himself an intellectual. Niko Bellic quickly realizes, however, that his professed knowledge is dubious at best. Some of his more egregious errors include thinking Dubai is in Africa and that Jesus killed John the Baptist.
  • The Marathon series has Tycho, who often tries to mimic Durandal's penchant for quoting from classic literature in order to appear to be his intellectual equal, but frequently makes mistakes. One of these which Durandal takes great pleasure in pointing out is Tycho's claim that Roland in The Song of Roland was able to break the sword Durandal (after which the character Durandal is named). He couldn't. No one can.
  • In Metal Gear Solid, Snake has a three-way conversation with Naomi and Master Miller where the former talks about her grandfather, claiming that he was an Asian-American FBI Agent who helped perform some sting operations to bring down the Mob in New York during the 1950s. At first Miller rolls with it, but later on he contacts Snake and points out that J. Edgar Hoover would have been way too racist to hire Asians for the FBI, that the first sting operations against the mob began in 1960 instead of The '50s, and that they began in Chicago instead of New York. He uses this to lead in to some information he found that suggests "Naomi" is an imposter and The Mole.
    • Liquid Snake claims that the asymmetry theory in biology is about how nature rejects symmetry in paired living organisms such as twinsnote  and how the dominant genes represent good traits and the recessive ones bad traitsnote . Liquid Snake is in-universe completely ignorant about biology. The Phantom Pain lampshades it by having a conversation reveal that, even as a pre-teen, he failed biology.
    • "Iroquois Pliskin" (Snake in disguise) in Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty pretends to be a member of the Navy SEAL teams sent to end the hostage situation, but the explosives expert the real SEALs brought with them notes a few holes in his story. First, he wears an officer's radio headset; SEAL officers stay away from the combat zones to act as Mission Control for their teams. Second, Pliskin quotes "Semper Fi" and "Who dares, wins", which are the respective mottos of the US Marine Corps and the Special Air Service; the actual Navy SEAL motto is "The Only Easy Day Was Yesterday".
    • Failure to do their research run in the Snake family. In Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, Big Boss claims to be either an entomologist or an ornithologist who came to Costa Rica on behalf of the CITES treaty, looking for a Ulysses butterly (not native to Costa Rica), a Morphos butterfly or a Quetzal bird (both not covered in the CITES).
  • Splatoon: According to the Pokémon Splatfest, Callie has spent years trying to find a Vulpix in her Pokémon Red, not knowing it is not found there and rather in Pokémon Blue. After calling the other version the inferior one, Marie reconsiders giving her a Vulpix.
    • Said Splatfest eventually reveals that Marie did in fact trade Callie a Vulpix... nicknamed BLUEISBEST. note 
  • Splatoon 2 has Pearl and Marina arguing about baseball and soccer in the setup for that particular Splatfest. When Marina goes on a rant about how baseball is a contrived sport, Pearl asks if Marina even knows how to play baseball; after a bit more work trying to prove her point, Marina eventually admits she doesn't know.
  • The various news bulletins in Tomodachi Life. For example, one claims that children attend kindergarten at age 0.
  • In Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Trials and Tribulations Maya claims that she likes chemistry and proceeds to claim that water is made of hydrogen and carbon instead of hydrogen and oxygen. When Phoenix corrects her she claims that there are alternate theories.

    Web Animation 
  • Terrible Writing Advice suggests writers to do this to the point that it's a Running Gag. Some examples include not researching the issues surrounding environmentalism when attempting to write a Green Aesop, and basing an evil empire off of Nazi Germany since picking another empire would require the author to open up a history book.

    Web Comics 
  • This episode of Closet Gamers contains a literal example, when a Dungeons & Dragons character informs the party that a "Purple Worm" is a tiny creature eaten by harmless, flightless birds, as opposed to the giant, nasty Sand Worm monster it actually is.
  • From Loli Loves Venom #32 — why you should not ask Venom for homework help:
    "In nature, spiders have many natural enemies. There is one main predator they always have to watch out for. The mighty octopus. Their tentacles of sheer fury are fierce opponents. Only through agility, resolution, and quick banter can the amazing spider atone for the danger he faces."
  • Misfile: Rumisiel, a slacker angel, claims to be from Canada while on Earth. Normally it's not a big deal, but when he's ecstatic about seeing snow for the first time, Dr. Upton is understandably confused.
    Dr. Upton: This is the first snow you've ever seen? [...] Aren't you from Canada?
    Rumisiel: Yeah... but I'm from, like, the tropical part of Canada. The vast Canadian Empire ranges all far and wide, you know, eh?
    Dr. Upton: ...there's something desperately wrong with that sentence, but I'm too tired to care. Remind me in the future never to talk to you until after I've had my coffee.
    Rumisiel: The Emperor of Canada told me the same thing once.

    Web Original 
  • YouTube channel My Life in Gaming occasionally invokes this in their Retraux-style "How to Beat" videos, such as by mispronouncing terms and by getting the backstory of Super Mario 3D World wrong, to mirror the errors that often occurred in the '80s-era "how to beat" VHS tapes that the series is imitating.
  • Invoked by Some Jerk with a Camera. As he reviews the ABC sitcoms that went to Disney World, he quickly finds they make some blatant errors about the park:
    • The Full House episode has the family meet Donald and Goofy right outside of their hotel when the costumed characters never go that far from the park.
    • In Step by Step:
      • Flash attempts to break the record for fastest time riding every Disney World ride, with his neighbor Mark helping him from the park's control room. While riding the Astro Orbiter, he's advised to not go to Alien Encounter and instead go to the Jungle Cruise because the parade is in progress. Since going to Alien Encounter from Astro Orbiter would not pass through the parade (since it doesn't go through Tomorrowland) but passing through Fantasyland to the Jungle Cruise would, Jerk concludes Mark must be trying to sabotage him.
      • The Indiana Jones Epic Spectacular show fills up and Flash is let in if he plays the part of Indy. This infuriates Jerk, as the show is the most dangerous stunt show in the park and would never let a random novice play such a central role.
      • J.T. and Rich blow all their money on trying to impress girls by treating them to dinner at a supposed Disney World restaurant called Pinetta's. However, Jerk finds not only is there no place at Disney World called Pinetta's, the only dining place he can find with that name in the world is in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
    Jerk: Was it this hard to find an expensive restaurant in Disney World?! The freaking churros have installment plans!
    • The Sabrina episode has her and her supporting cast travel from Animal Kingdom to their hotel room four times in one episode, even though the hotel they're at (the Coronade Springs Resort) is 3 miles away from the park. Roseanne commits a similar error, as the family somehow makes it from their hotel room to Main Street USA in only 14 minutes.
    • During his coverage of The George Lopez Show, a clip plays where George's mom claims she rode the Matterhorn ride while pregnant with him. As the safety announcement played every 5 minutes during the line to the ride shows, pregnant women are heavily discouraged from riding the Matterhorn.
    • In a later series, when reviewing Escape from Tomorrow, Jerk rips into the film after it claims that Disney's turkey drumsticks are actually made from emu. Given that Disney sells roughly 1.6 million turkey legs a year, it'd mean that Disney would have to breed and slaughter over 800,000 emus, more emus than even exist in their native home of Australia.
  • The Third Rate Gamer gives us many examples, parodying The Irate Gamer's above examples, such as claiming that the Super Mario Bros. film is the original and the game is just a cheap licensed cash-in.
  • The Red Panda Adventures episode "The World Next Door" uses this trope to lend credence to Baboon McSmoothie's claims that he's a time traveler from an Alternate Timeline's future. The Flying Squirrel notes that, when attempting to impersonate the Red Panda, he nailed the voice but got the costume wrong; yet between newspaper photos and the Red Panda's mysterious nature the opposite would have been more likely. He also expected the Flying Squirrel to be a teenage boy named Kent Baxter instead of an adult woman named Kit Baxter. Kit later reveals Kent would have been her name if she'd been a boy. The bizarre mix of possessing information he couldn't have known while getting the easy to learn details dead wrong convince the heroes McSmoothie is telling the truth.
  • The now-memetic "Jimmy McPerson" essay includes, among others:
    • Having Jimmy grow up in Illinois while living in Harlem.
    • Having the Japanese attack Jimmy's town, when neither NY nor Chicago was attacked.
    • Alleging blacks couldn't join the military in World War II because Martin Luther King Jr. wasn't born yet. Yes, they could, and MLK was born in 1929.
    • Jimmy meets with the president of Japan. President of the Japanese Empire?
    • There's also the rather hilarious image of Jimmy fighting off "countless samurai and ninjas" in his quest for revenge.
    • Jimmy battles with both said president/emperor/whatever AND Hitler.
    • Jimmy kills Hitler in a suicidal charge. Which is not how Hitler died.
    • Often overlooked: Jimmy's battle with Hitler and "President Japan" takes place on a military base in Tokyo, China.
    • And the author, Peter Nguyen, has done this a LOT. According to Peter, Christopher Columbus's allies were Maria, Santa Maria (Who later becomes Pinto for no reason), and Tupac, the tyrant king of England is Prince Charles, the Indians have a power level of at least 10,000, Saddam Hussein killed Biggie Smalls, Walt Whitman is 90 stories tall, accompanied by his blue ox Emily Dickinson, and their deeds are legendary, and the New World discovered by Columbus was the Planet of the Apes. "Peter, please stop doing this" indeed.
  • Game Grumps: Played for laughs in the first "Guest Grumps", with former Rare composer Grant Kirkhope. At the start of the video, Jon and Arin are playing Conker's Bad Fur Day, calling it Grant's first game. Grant gets pissed and storms out - then it Smash Cuts to them playing a game Grant actually worked on.

    Western Animation 
  • Quite common on Archer thanks to how the entire team are basically a pack of complete idiots and/or nutjobs.
    • Archer, Lana and Ray are on an assignment to find a killer only for the latter two to discover Archer didn't bother reading the full report. He only knows that the killer is from a country "that was with the Axis" in World War II. The killer turns out to be from Ireland.
      • You can also argue Lana and Ray fell into this as they know Archer tends not to read reports but still entrusted him to be the one in charge of it and didn't bother checking themselves.
    • Notable in the Running Gag of Archer seemingly with no understanding of history, science or culture but every now and then will perfectly rattle off some obscure tidbit and throw the gang on how he can know that but be completely oblivious to far more common knowledge.
    Lana: But seriously, how in the hell did you think Ireland was an Axis power?
    Archer: Oh, my God, I think this whole time I was actually thinking of Romania but only as an inevitable consequence of the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact and the Soviet invasion of Bessarabia. (Which all makes sense).
  • In one episode of Ben 10: Omniverse, Pax unleashes a tiny alien called the Screegit around Bellwood. The Screegit turns into a rampaging monster when exposed to nitrogen, but Pax thinks it'll be okay, since humans breathe oxygen. Ben angrily points out that Earth's atmosphere has nitrogen in it as well.note 
  • In the Home Movies episode "History", Brendon makes a movie with George Washington, Annie Oakley, and Pablo Picasso as the primary villains, with very obvious inaccuracies for their backstories, such as Washington freeing the slaves, Picasso cutting off his ear, and he confused Annie Oakley with Little Orphan Annie (well, along with sharing the same name, they were both the subject of Broadway musicals). It's later revealed that he's been receiving tutoring from Coach McGuirk, and he's flunking history.
  • In a likely nod to the Animal House example above, TJ from Recess once made a speech to convince Gretchen to not give up on the "space travel training" the gang was putting her through:
    TJ: Did Albert Edison give up when they stole his Theory of Regularity? Did Ben Franklin give up when the Germans shot down his kite?
  • Total Drama World Tour:
    • The intern responsible for doing the research comes up with Rome, rather than Greece, as the birthplace of the Olympic Games. He is fired by Chris, the host of the show, when the mistake is pointed out... by being shoved out of the plane.
    • Courtney tried correcting Chris when the contestants were in China, and he told them the Great Wall was built eight million years ago. The kicker? Even though Courtney realized the Great Wall couldn't have been built until much more recently, she explained there were dinosaurs in 8,000,000 B.C. Probably joking?
  • The Simpsons:
    • In "Bart vs. Australia" Bart calls several countries in the Southern Hemisphere to see which way the water flows in their toilets and drains. Among them is apparently Burkina Faso. This might actually be justified since Bart isn't exactly solid with the book-learning.
    • "Lisa the Simpson" has an "educational film" featuring Troy McClure giving an oversimplification of what DNA is. When he's asked what DNA actually stands for, he freezes up and the film abruptly ends.
      • The same film also mentions that DNA is the reason fat people have fat children. Weight is determined by environmental factors, not DNA. The video clip also shows a baby (presumably a newborn, given that the scene seems to take place in a hospital) eating a slice of pizza, which would be impossible for two reasons: 1. The baby wouldn't have any teeth with which to bite the pizza yet, and 2. Being a newborn, the baby's digestive system wouldn't be able to handle solid foods yet.
  • Futurama refers to the Matrix example given above, with Bender saying "Doesn't that violate the Second Law of Thermodynamics? Wouldn't just about anything make a better battery than a human? Like a potato? Or a battery?" Leela explains that while everyone at the time it was made thought The Matrix was the worst movie ever because of this "mistake", it turns out the film actually got it right. Of course, this is a universe in which it's possible to travel between stars in hours or at most days because "scientists increased the speed of light in 2208," besides which, in the real world, the original movie is still roundly considered very good by most people who have seen it.
  • In the Imagine Spot short "The Wrath of Waitro", Shaggy and Scooby—er, Commander Cool and Mellow Mutt—escape the villains trap, a vat filled with chocolate pudding, by eating their way out of it. in real life, chocolate is harmful to dogs and all that rich, savory mousse would have killed A Pup Named Scooby-Doo. Fortunately (a) it was all in Shaggy's imagination (b) a young boy legitimately might not know this fact and (c) Scooby being verbal and partly bipedal may mean he can safely eat the stuff, who knows?
  • In one episode of Camp Lazlo, Lazlo is trying to motivate the Bean Scouts to participate in a Pinecone-Sitting competition with the Squirrel Scouts over a mud puddle. He does this by asking if Napoleon gave up the moon to the Swiss.
  • Steven Universe:
    • The episode "Chille Tid", Pearl states that it feels like they've been on their mission for "lightyears". Amethyst attempts to be the smart one, but subverts it by stating that "lightyears measures light, not time".
    • When asked why Connie prefers using the library rather than the Internet when researching for school work, she said that the last time she trusted the Internet "she ended up writing an egregious essay that claimed that raccoons have Heat Vision."
  • In South Park, Cartman tries to make it look like the girls jumped him and drew a vagina on his face. However, he failed to realize that vaginas don't have testicles, something any girl would have known. Kyle quickly calls him out on it.
    • A double example, both In-Universe and out-of-universe: at one point, Cartman establishes a plan to ambush one of the girls, Nelly, by kicking her in the balls. This, naturally, fails, as she's a girl and therefore doesn't have balls, something Cartman didn't know. However, what the writers failed to realize (similarly to the King of the Hill example above) is that, despite lack of testicles, getting kicked in the crotch hurts just as much for a girl as it does for a guy. Subverted later on when Wendy kicks a girl in the groin and it does hurt.
  • In the Teen Titans episode "Revolution," Beast Boy gets a ton of major details about the Revolutionary War wrong when trying to explain the 4th of July to Starfire, such as mixing up the year it started with the year of Columbus's first voyage and saying that the Boston Tea Party was a literal tea party. Raven responds by asking if Beast Boy learned history from a cereal box. Later, after they've been repeatedly beaten by Mad Mod's robots, Beast Boy says "Now I know how George Washington felt when Napoleon beat him at Pearl Harbor."


    Fan Works 
  • Gensokyo 20XX The fic references Tosca, an opera she alluded to the author initially thinking it was by Shakespeare. She later admits her mistake and retcons it into an in-universe mistake.
  • In Captain SNES: The Game Masta, Alex tries to get a Zone Eater not to eat him by claiming he's got no beef with Scientology in an attempt to placate what he thinks is a Shai-Hulud. The author admits to confusing L. Ron Hubbard and Frank Herbert, so he claims that Alex does that too.

    Web Original 
  • In the Demo Disk episode, "Rayman SUCKS", Bruce Greene of Funhaus starts rattling off random trivia he knows about Braveheart, including that principal photography only lasted 21 days. Unable to believe this, his costars Adam Kovic and James Willems look it up, only to find out that it lasted 42 days – exactly double of what Bruce has insisted every time they discuss Braveheart.
    Adam: Should we submit that to IMDb Trivia?
    James: "Did you know that Bruce has always been wrong about how long it took to shoot Braveheart? Every single f*ckin' time he brought up the movie?!"