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Implementing the Incomplete

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Leela: Fry, there's nothing else here. You only wrote two pages of dialogue?
Fry: Well, it took an hour to write. I thought it would take an hour to read!

Sometimes a character will try to create something, and then leave the idea as fini


Sometimes crosses over with Cordon Bleugh Chef, Obvious Beta, Bait-and-Switch note , Schedule Slip, and Vapor Ware. Sometimes the product is pushed out because it was Christmas Rushed. This also may happen because the product or media was in Development Hell or had a Troubled Production, and a company just wanted to push it out just to get it off their backs. If the item or game-in-question is still fun to use, it may result in Good Bad Bugs.

Compare with Unfinished, Untested, Used Anyway.

Fictional Examples:

Films — Live-Action
  • Although it only actually happens in a few of the endings, this trope hangs over much of Black Mirror: Bandersnatch. Stefan brings the idea for a massive video game with a multitude of different choices, outcomes, and branching paths to a hot development company riding a string of hits. The boss immediately moves to try to push the game out to the public. If Stefan turns it over to the game company, it will be an In-Universe example of Christmas Rushed, resulting in a terrible game and the quickest way to reach one of the Downer Endings. If Stefan tries to work on it himself to get it right, it proves far too massive a job for one coder to get it done on the schedule he promised the company, despite working around the clock. There are various endings where the game is released in different stages of development and gets different ratings from reviewers.

Live-Action TV

  • One "As Seen On TV" parody from MADtv (1995) features Aries Spears as George Foreman endorsing his famous George Foreman Grill for Thanksgiving. His plan is to use the grill to cook an entire turkey for his family (also all named "George Foreman", including his daughter). Unfortunately, instead of roasting it to golden-brown perfection, all it does is leave char lines on the skin of the turkey, and leave the rest cold and raw. When Foreman decides it's done, it's already been a month note , it's time for Christmas, and Jim Rome (played by Frank Caliendo) points out the obvious that its not cooked at all. Foreman, out of frustration, shoves a handful of the half-raw turkey meat into his mouth, which Rome, of course, gags on and spits out.
  • Westworld: Subverted with "the reveries," a system update for the Hosts that gives them more lifelike affectations, but apparently causes them to malfunction. Bernard becomes concerned that Ford did the update before it could be debugged while rushing to complete his new narrative experience, before the Delos board forces Ford out of the park. It's all actually Ford's plan. The Hosts aren't malfunctioning, they're becoming sentient. And also now see humans as their enemy.
  • One episode of Sabrina the Teenage Witch sees Aunt Zelda trying to develop a panacea for all of humanity's illnesses. Instead, she inadvertently creates a potion that can leave any surface spotless. Hilda and Salem, seeing dollar signs, tell her to market the potion as a household cleaning product; Zelda is reluctant as she hasn't fully tested it, but eventually gets greedy herself and agrees. True to form, it turns out that the potion causes people to develop green mold on their bodies, and everyone who bought some demands a refund.
    • Another episode centers on this trope: Sabrina gets lazy with her spellcasting and starts relying on "do-over" charms that can hit a Reset Button on whatever incantation she just did. Her Quizmaster takes those charms away to make her face the consequences of such sloppy spellcasting, but Sabrina can't break the habit and keeps performing thoughtless magic that repeatedly blows up in her face.

Web Animation

  • Played for laughs in the vein of Unfinished, Untested, Used Anyway, with SRM Transformers Episode 3: Melatronnote  and the Decepticons are being attacked by the Autobots, to capture some Energon to bring Spudbeenote  back to life. Melatron forces Shockwave (who is still on Cybertron) to bring the tank-Decepticon "Brawl" through the Space Bridge. Hilarity Ensues.
    [The Decepticons are gathering Energon out in the fields]
    SRM Primenote : Stop right there, Melatron!
    Melatron: Are you freaking kidding me?! [to his communicator] Shockwave, report!
    Shockwave: Yes, Melatron?
    Melatron: Send him down!
    Shockwave: The repairs aren't finished! I need more...!
    Melatron: Just do it!
    [The Space Bridge activates]
    Brawl: [bandaged up and half-repaired, subtitled] HaiL tRaFfIC c0Ne!

Western Animation

  • DuckTales (1987): Fenton creates a marketing campaign for a product called Pep, only he doesn't actually have a product to sell. He goes to Gyro Gearloose for suggestions and finds him working on a bubble gum that makes people levitate. With hundreds of impatient customers demanding Pep, Fenton takes the gum, despite Gyro's protests that he hasn't finished testing it for side effects. Soon, everyone is chewing Pep gum; unfortunately, just as Gyro predicted, people are unable to get back down after chewing too much.
  • Rocko's Modern Life: Rocko, Heffer, and Filburt's pilot pitch for Ralph's new cartoon "Wacky Delly" is nowhere near done when Ralph decides to show it to the executives. This trope is invoked in that Ralph wanted the pilot to be bad so he could finally be freed from his contract. Unfortunately, the executives love it and pick it up for a full series.
  • The Simpsons: Happens when Homer attempts to build a barbecue pit. He accidentally drops the parts into wet cement, and then spills them again with the bricks he was going to use to build the base. He's forced to use the French side of the instruction paper, until he realizes he can't read French, at which point he starts mashing and forcing parts together in the vain hope he can complete it before the cement dries.
    Homer: Ahh... Yeah, that's one fine-looking barbecue pit.
  • The Smoggies: In "Goodbye Engine Number Nine", Uncle Boom, fed up with Engine number nine constantly breaking down, is really pushing for Speed's Zoom Train to be brought out to replace it, despite Speed's assertions that it's not finished. At a town meeting, he goads everyone into bringing it out despite this by implying they can either stay stuck in the past (with number nine), or advance into the future (with the Zoom Train). The Suntots agree to bringing the Zoom Train into service as a result. On the Zoom Train's maiden voyage, however, Speed is proven right when Choo Choo loses control of the Zoom Train, and it crashes.
  • Spongebob Squarepants: Zigzagged in two episodes featuring Squidward:

Real-Life Examples:

  • Happened quite a few times with a number of German vehicles during World War II, the most infamous example would be the VK 4501 (P), one of the prototypes for a project that would eventually give birth to the Tiger Heavy tank. When this prototype lost the bid to the Henschel design that ended up becoming the Tiger tank we all know, Dr. Ferdinand Porsche, the tank's designer, ran into a problem. In his hasty assumption that the Porsche prototype would win the bid, he had 90 pre-production hulls of the vehicle still laying around. Not wanting to waste more resources, he had all of the vehicles converted into the Ferdinand heavy tank destroyer. It was one of the most advanced designs for the time, featuring 200mm thick armor on the front, an impressive 88mm gun, and novel gasoline-electric drive system. However, the design was also rushed into combat just before Operation Citadel, with several breaking down upon immediately entering combat, and others being taken down not by Soviet tanks or anti-tank guns, but by Soviet infantry with a Molotov Cocktail or Anti-Vehicle mine, no thanks to the Ferdinand lacking machine guns for the crew.
  • The early model Panther tanks were rushed into combat by Hitler and the German High Command, in order to make it in time for Operation Citadel and bolster the forces stationed there. These were some 200 tanks, deployed between two elite Panzer battalions, who, at the time of the Battle of Kursk, were still training on how to operate them. The end result? Less than 1/3 of these tanks would survive. Not by enemy action, but by a number of reliability issues and teething problems, ranging from the transmission giving in to the engines catching fire. While later models did fix many of these issues, the reliability problems continued to plague the Panther until the end of the war.
  • The United States Army ended up rushing the T26E3 Pershing Heavy tank into Europe just before World War II there ended, in order to test it out against German tanks such as the Panther or Tiger, which it ultimately did, with mixed results. Unlike the Panther and Tiger, where early production vehicles were the ones rushed out before problems were fixed, the US literally rushed five untested prototypes overseas into a combat zone, and handed them over to the US 3rd Armored Division. While not evident at the time, the tank suffered from being underpowered thanks to using an inadequate engine that only gave sufficient horsepower to move it along flat surfaces. These problems would only become evident during The Korean War, where the mountainous terrain gave the tank's crews and mechanics constant headaches. It was for this reason that the Pershing was later upgraded into the M46 Patton, which gave it a number of fixes and improvements, including a more powerful engine and a newer 90mm gun, during the immediate postwar period.
  • The Japanese Aircraft Carrier Shinano had a rather troubled development, to say the least. While originally intended to be the third Yamato class battleship when she was laid down, following the loss of four of Japan's fleet aircraft carriers during the Battle of Midway, she was immediately converted into an aircraft carrier herself. The ship ended up launching in late 1944...when her watertight compartments were still in the process of being tested, and naval workers and engineers were still onboard the ship looking for any problems and structural weaknesses. What's more, she was still scheduled to receive a fitting out upon arrival at her destination, the Kure Naval Base. Unfortunately for the Shinano, she had the terrible luck of running into an American submarine, the USS Archerfish, which promptly fired six torpedoes, of which four hit the carrier. While at first thought to be able to take the damage, thanks to the aforementioned lack of watertight testing and the crew's inexperience with Damage Control, the flooding grew From Bad to Worse, and the carrier ultimately sank a few hours later, taking thousands of crew and civilian contractors down with her.

Video Game Systems

  • Seemingly happened with the Virtual Boy: The system was intended to cash in on the virtual reality craze of the early-to-mid 1990s. However, technology had not advanced enough to create a fully-realized VR headset for consumers. What resulted was a system that caused headaches (due to its red odd-refresh-method LED displays), disinterested game companies, inability for other viewers to watch gameplay, and poor manufacturing that resulted in parts breaking (namely the medallion on the visor stand), and the LED displays inside wearing out due to the fact that the cable connections were not soldered-on, but glued-on.

Video Games

  • Infamously happened with Action 52: One individual, Vince Perri, got the bright idea to create a video game with 52 games on one cartridge. Unfortunately, he had no real experience, so he farmed the programming out to a bunch of college students with Atari STs. One day, out of the blue, Perri decided the half-baked idea was finished and time to ship, and the rest is history...
  • Happened with Duke Nukem Forever: previously Vapor Ware for 15 years, this game was decided as done by Gearbox Software in 2011. It resulted in a mish-mash of conflicting software, artistic design, story ideas, gameplay mechanics, and humor that was no longer considered acceptable in the 2010s.


  • Happens from time to time on TV Tropes itself, when a person has gotten the proper amount of votes on a trope page, and launches/rogue-launches it prematurely without the blessing of the community.