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Martha: I thought you were going to say [the Master] was your secret brother or something.
The Doctor: ... You've been watching too much TV.
Doctor Who, "The Sound of Drums"

A fan gets Jossed when the elaborate Epileptic Trees or Fanfic that they've lovingly built upon canonical elements is abruptly disproved by further canon or Word of God. Named after Joss Whedon; Buffy the Vampire Slayer was notorious for this. Fans would come up with detailed and elaborate theories or plots during summer hiatuses, most of which got completely thrown out within three episodes of the new season.

May lead to Fanon Discontinuity when disgruntled fans prefer their own fanon over the canon. In extreme cases, critics and fans may invoke Death of the Author to preserve their interpretation of events.

Note that in some circles, the term "Jossed" refers to a gutwrenching main character death, which Whedon is also famous for. This definition entered the populace when during a Q&A session at an Australian university, a young Aussie girl noted his tendency to do horrible things to on-screen couples, and to much laughter, said "We call it getting 'Jossed'". Other sources also use this term as "shocking plot twist." This trope deals only with the "classic" definition.


This has two opposites: I Knew It!, where the fan theory is proven to be true by a twist that was planned all along, and Ascended Fanon, where the author decides to promote some fanon elements to canon status. The inverse of this is Shrug of God, where the author refuses to say that one answer is more "correct" than another.

For specific cases of fan works being disproven and not simple guesses, see Outdated by Canon.



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    Anime & Manga 
  • Black Jack: Osamu Tezuka did a second story about Kei/Megumi apparently solely to Joss speculation that she'd spontaneously turned into a man after her hysterectomy and loss of ovaries.
  • Bleach:
    • There used to be a theory that Ichigo wasn't special until Rukia transferred her power to him. This was despite him having the power to see spirits since birth. However, the theory was jossed when the Shattered Shaft training stating categorically that Ichigo had possessed shinigami power since birth that had been locked away until Rukia's power nudged it awake.
    • Kubo Tite finally jossed a theory that was very popular with parts of the fandom who believed Ichigo looked like Kaien because he was Kaien's reincarnation. Parts of the fandom believed the theory was jossed when it was learned that Metastacia was consumed by Aaroniero and with it, Kaien's soul. However, Aaroniero actually consumed Kaien's spiritual body, not his soul. The theory was actually jossed when it was revealed Ichigo is Kaien's cousin via his father who is Kaien's uncle, leading to an I Knew It! from other parts of the fandom that had never believed the reincarnation theory but had believed Ichigo was related to the Shiba family by blood. The fate of Kaien's actual soul is currently unknown.
    • The theory that Isshin used to be a member of the Royal Guard has finally been jossed. In another jossed and I Knew It! situation, the theory was that Isshin had been, at different times, both the former tenth division captain and an ex-member of the Royal Guard. He wasn't Royal Guard, but he was the former tenth division captain, and it turns out his family is responsible for the Royal Guard's ability to travel between the Royal Realm and Soul Society... so he wasn't a member, but his family was connected.
    • An argument has existed within the fandom for years over whether Urahara placed the Hougyoku inside Rukia's body after Chapter 1 when he gave her the special gigai or Urahara placed the Hougyoku inside her years before the start of the story. One of the databooks eventually reveals that Urahara placed it inside her after Chapter 1 when she's given the special gigai. This is another example of a reveal that is both jossed and an I Knew It! example at the same time.
    • During Turn Back the Pendulum's flashback arc, there was a theory in part of the fandom that Aizen was ultimately an Anti-Hero who teamed up with Urahara and the Vizards, especially after the existence of Maggot's Nest was introduced. Unsurprisingly, this theory was jossed when it was confirmed that Aizen was indeed the Big Bad he'd always been.
  • In Code Geass, the popular fan theory that Lelouch faked his death at the end of the series has been Jossed in a few official materials released after the ending, as well as in interviews with the staff and cast members that seem to suggest he's he's dead for real. The Official Guide Book mentions this 5 times, and the special edition DVD replaces the entire last scene (which sparked the fan theory in the first place) with a monologue by C.C that clearly indicates that Lelouch is dead. However, some arguments are still ongoing as to how any or all of these elements should be interpreted, whether they are actually authoritative or just part of the in-universe "official history" that might not match the possibly hidden truth of a plan already based on lies and deceit. Another example would be how a select few in the fandom continued to insist that Britannian Prince Clovis should rise from the dead. Or at least wind up alive after all as a Geass-possessing Big Bad of some sort. Theories of Nunnally having either dark intentions or a split personality were also fairly popular in fan circles during the broadcast. But neither of these speculations came to pass.
  • Depending on how much you value Word of God, Dragon Ball Minus does this to a variety of fan theories and knowledge held for the better part of 20 years, plus completely changing the Bardock story as we know it (though it was anime-only anyway).
  • A great deal of Fairy Tail fanficcers liked (and still like) to claim that Natsu and the rest of the guild would begin to ignore Lucy for some reason when Lisanna was revealed to still be alive. 60+ chapters later, Natsu and Lucy's bond is stronger than ever, and he and Lisanna have said perhaps four or five sentences to each other. And Lisanna isn't jealous at all for this. In fact, the anime plays her up as a Shipper on Deck for Natsu and Lucy. In another case, over half the theories as to what Natsu's relation to Zeref might be or what happened with the dragons all revolve around the idea that Natsu and possibly Gajeel are several hundred years old. The idea is based around the fact that neither of them could pass through a barrier that was supposed to only block those who were stone statues or over 80, so it looks like a pretty sound support. Except that the author came out and stated that the two of them aren't over 80. Unfortunately, since the majority of fans don't actually buy the official volumes, most don't read it, and still make guesses based around an already jossed theory. They were born 400 years ago and sent to the future.
  • Though many Fullmetal Alchemist fans interpret Roy Mustang and Riza Hawkeye's relationship as romantic, in the post-show cast party omake, she directly thanks the show's creators for not making them a couple.
  • It is frequently assumed by reviewers such as Bennett the Sage that Grave of the Fireflies is either a) an anti-war film, or b) a guilt trip aimed at the rebellious Japanese youth of the 1980s. According to director Isao Takahata, however, neither interpretation is correct. The actual message of the film is that we must be able to empathize with everyone even in the most trying times, and that failure to do so only results in tragedy. As a side note, it is worth mentioning that Takahata is not only a firebombing survivor himself but is also an outspoken critic of Japanese society's tendency towards rigid conformity, which makes the guilt trip interpretation especially ridiculous.
  • Gundam:
    • When word came out about a Prototype Psycho Gundam MSV by mecha designer Kunio Okawara piloted by a boy named Gil Ratockie, the younger brother of Miharu Ratokie from the original series, who had been turned into an Artificial Newtype and renamed Three Murasame, it was generally assumed that the enigmatic Four Murasame was actually their younger sister, Millie. Then the tie-in novel Four's Story: And to a Soldier... was published, thoroughly demolishing the theory as it reveals that Four, whose real name is conspicuously absent, is a North-American girl who was orphaned in the Colony Drop at the end of Gundam 0083 (which took place in the Mid-West of the USA) rather than during the One Year War like the Ratokie siblings. Furthermore, while Millie was one of the test subjects in the early projects to convert normal humans in Artificial Newtypes, it's also mentioned that the poor girl didn't survive the process in itself. What's more, Gil/Three, who is a major character in the novel, is presented as something of a love interest for Four.
    • In Gundam Build Fighters Try, the protagonist Sekai uses a G Gundam-style Gunpla called the Build Burning Gundam. When news first came out, many Western fans assumed it was a reference to the English dub, which had to Bowdlerize God Gundam's name to Burning Gundam to avoid offending Christian sensibilities. In an interview, the show's director explained that the naming was actually a coincidence; Burning was chosen because it fit the naming theme established in G and that he wasn't even aware of the English name change until after they started making Try.
  • Hellsing. The true species of the Major (he's a cyborg) was only introduced in the last chapters, and before that he was considered either a vampire or some weird magical human. And then of course in the aforementioned last chapters, almost everybody died.
  • Hunter × Hunter has dropped a Bridget on many fans of both genders in the form of the Databook. First there was Kurapika, then Karuto, and then there was the whole business of Pitou's gender.
  • When Inazuma Eleven was still running its original series, there was a rather well believed fan theory that the super-dimensional aspects to the soccer were actually just symbolic representations of what the moves seemed like, and that in actuality, there was no super dimensional aspect at all. Such as Fire Tornado not actually involving jumping into the air and forming a vortex of fire, and Majin the Hand not actually involving summoning a majin to stop the ball, but that this is just used to represent how powerful the moves appear to the characters. There was nothing that directly contradicted this theory in most of the original series, and there were a few things that seemed to support it. But then it gets completely killed with GO which introduces the aspect of keshin summoning, something that's obviously and blatantly super dimensional. Then Chrono Stone smashes it even further by having mixi-max; where you transport auras between people, as a very real thing. Not only that, but in the GO trilogy, there's a number of moments where hissatsus are used for things outside of just soccer, where it wouldn't make any sense if someone really was just using normal soccer moves.
  • The final ending of the Non-Serial Movie version of Macross Frontier left most of the fanbase believing (and a warning for fans of the show, this spoiler text is the Mother Of All Spoilers as far as you're concerned) Alto was dead, Sheryl stayed in a coma, and they were basically Together in Death. An interview with Kawamori Jossed this: Alto survived, Sheryl woke up, Happy Ending.
  • Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch:
    • Caren, Noel and Coco, upon their return in the middle of season two, will get their own plot arc and be important again.note 
    • Lucia and Kaito will get a duet.note 
    • The Great One is Michal.note 
  • A popular theory in the Nabari no Ou fandom was that the kitten Yukimi found and named Yoite was Yoite's reincarnation. It was completely jossed in the final chapter when Yoite shows up again and Yukimi goes out of his way to rename the cat "Yoi".
  • Naruto:
    • The series Jossed a bunch of theories involving Akatsuki members Itachi, Pain, and Tobi when it turned out that Itachi was a good guy, Pain's true identity is Nagato, and Tobi is both Obito Uchiha and Akatsuki's true leader. Chapter 474 finally Jossed the theory of Danzo being Tobi by merit of them facing off against each other.
    • A lot of theories about the bijuu were Jossed with the revelation that they were split from the Ten Tails by the Sage of the Six Paths, and again with the reveal that a bijuu will "die," but reform later if its host is killed. And Naruto's mother Kushina being the previous Kyuubi jinchuuriki.
    • A lot of fanfic writers assumed that Naruto's Healing Factor allowed him to regrow lost limbs. Chapter 699 shows that no, that's not the case.
    • The "Genjutsu Theory", espoused mostly by upset shipping fans, which claims that the events of the final chapters and The Last: Naruto the Movie are in reality taking place in the Infinite Tsukiyomi dream world, of Hinata, to be more precise (since The Last is very Hinata-centric). Suffice to say, the fact that Hinata's dream featured a still-alive Neji, even though he died to save Naruto and Hinata in Chapter 614, and then everyone, including Hinata, woke up from their dream and attended Neji's funeral in Chapter 699, plus the subsequent releases of Naruto Hiden, Naruto Gaiden, Boruto: Naruto the Movie and the sequel manga Boruto: Naruto Next Generations, not to mention Kishimoto's own statements in several post-series interviews—statements that are heavily supported by the fact that The Last was confirmed with Kishimoto's approval and direct involvement two years before the manga ended—have disproved this theory to hell and back.
    • Post-main series finale, there was the pervasive fan theory that Sasuke's child, Sarada, was in reality Karin's daughter instead of Sakura's. Naruto Gaiden not only disproved this, but also gave it a rather large middle finger.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion, though the director Hideaki Anno prefers a Shrug of God stance towards fan theories and outright asks the audience to find their own answers, the creative team behind the series has been known to occasionally speak out against a few of them.
    • Most notably, Anno himself punctured the fan theory that claimed Misato assassinated Kaji in episode 21, clarifying that the deed was done by a random Mook on behalf of either NERV or SEELE. The scene in the involved episode was even re-edited to remove the accidental implication.
    • There was rampant speculation over which episodes of the series the third Rebuild of Evangelion film would adapt and what changes would be made. The movie then rendered most fan theories moot when it was revealed that it took place after a 14-year Time Skip and told a completely original story.
    • A theory that is common among Evangelion fans is that Shinji is intended as a mocking satire of the series' audience. According to character designer Yoshiyuki Sadamoto, Shinji is actually an Author Avatar for director Hideaki Anno, who at the time of Shinji's creation was suffering from many of the same issues as Shinji does.
    • Elaborate theories of deliberate, complex Christian symbolism in Eva kind of fell apart after Assistant Director Kazuya Tsurumaki commented: "There are a lot of giant robot shows in Japan, and we did want our story to have a religious theme to help distinguish us. Because Christianity is an uncommon religion in Japan we thought it would be mysterious. None of the staff who worked on Eva are Christians. There is no actual Christian meaning to the show, we just thought the visual symbols of Christianity look cool. If we had known the show would get distributed in the US and Europe we might have rethought that choice."
    • When the manga adaptation did a bonus chapter, which included a cameo from the Rebuild character, Mari Makinami, several Epileptic Trees immediately sprouted, but the manga's writer and artist, Yoshiyuki Sadamoto, would later clarify in an interview that the bonus chapter was just something he did for fun and that it was not in any way canon to either the manga or the Rebuild series.
  • One Piece:
    • Boa Hancock being Luffy's mom was a pretty popular theory for a while, even though its only basis was that they sorta looked alike. It got Jossed when she fell in love with him, and it was later revealed that she's only 12 years older than him. This example is probably going to go down in history because of how obsessed the fandom was with this theory at one point. Pretty embarrassing for a lot of people in retrospect.
    • Word of God has also soundly Jossed many theories surrounding Tashigi, including her being blood related to Kuina or her being Kuina brought back to life. Their being twins was an especially popular fandom theory for years, which is why it hasn't quite died yet despite said Word of God and a side story that explicitly showed that Kuina was an only child.
    • During the Time Skip Eustass Kid replaced his left arm with a robotic one. For a decent while, many had presumed he lost his arm in a fight with the Big Mom Pirates. The Wano arc revealed they were only half wrong; Kid did lose the arm in a fight, but it was against the Red Hair Pirates, not Big Mom's crew. This one's notable because the fan theory was actually acknowledged in-story, with Caribou directly mentioning a rumor about Eustass Kid fighting Big Mom and her crew, right before the real events were revealed.
  • Pokémon:
    • The series has been particularly vulnerable to Jossing in the DP seasons: "Ash will get Buizel" (Dawn does, but Ash does trade for it later), "Ash will get Hippopotas" (nobody does), "Ash will get Shieldon" (same), "Paul is a starting trainer" (he's been a trainer as long as Ash has).
    • Probably one of the biggest Josses for the fandom was the episode that finally revealed once and for all that Pikachu is male, shooting down a lot of fans who assumed the opposite. Besides, Pikachu's tail never had an indentation, so it can be assumed it was male from the beginning.note 
    • A BW episode officially confirmed that Pokémon in the anime can only learn 4 moves total (despite the fact that they are frequently shown to use more than four moves in a single battle).
  • Pretty Cure
    • Futari wa Pretty Cure Splash★Star: Some fans believed that Nagisa and Honoka would mentor Saki and Mai, until the two series were cemented as strict alternate continuities. A much crackier theory posited that the girls would eventually fight EVIL BREAD, due to the Hyuuga family's bakery job. Bread was one of the few inanimate objects of any significance that were never turned into a monster during the series.
    • Yes! Pretty Cure 5: Masuko Mika was thought to be a potential Sixth Ranger by the fanbase for a time, but never made it past comic relief, for the most part. The aforementioned slot ended up going to Milk come next series.
    • Fresh Pretty Cure!: A good number of fans suspected Kaoru-chan, the girls' mysteriously savvy donut vendor friend of being the Kingdom of Sweet's Elder Tiramisu in human form, a theory that more or less went up in smoke around episode 29. Before that, parts of the fanbase insisted that Setsuna, thought to be the unrevealed Cure Passion was either too obvious a candidate for the position, too awesome as a villain, or both; hence, the Akarun was going to be granted to some new girl we'd never met around mid-season, tradition be damned. It went to Setsuna.
    • HeartCatch Pretty Cure!: Tsukikage Yuri/Cure Moonlight was thought to be either dead, captured, or free but smacked with Laser-Guided Amnesia until episode 8, when she was shown to be alive and in full possession of her memories. The Dark Pretty Cure was also thought to be Moonlight's former partner, Cure Sunshine, until Moonlight was cemented as working alone and Sunshine turned up as a brand new Cure.
    • Suite Pretty Cure ♪: Siren was suspected to be Cure Muse by a good portion of the fandom. The fact that Siren defected from the villains' side and started showing some suspicious behavior right before Muse debuted appeared to clinch this... until both characters appeared in the same scene in episode 13.
    • Smile Pretty Cure!: Because there were seven gems on the Smile Compact and five Cures, fans guessed that two more heroines would be added during the series. However, no characters were even set up to become new Cures, and the team remains a fixed Five-Man Band.
    • Doki Doki Pretty Cure: There are five Royal Crystals, one for each Cure's color and an additional red one, leading to theories of a red Sixth Ranger Precure and that it's either Ai-chan (a baby fairy), Regina (one of the villains), or, somehow, Marie-Ange (who's missing AND comatose). The show itself hints very heavily at Regina, until the red Precure is revealed and it turns out it's none of the aforementioned characters, but a new one called Aguri.
  • Puella Magi Madoka Magica: A lot of fanfic and fanart used the pre-witch form of Charlotte as an O.C. Stand-in, often depicting her a humanized version of her smaller form. Needless to say, a lot of these interpretations got tossed in the garbage when Nagisa Momoe, the canon version of that character, was introduced in Rebellion. One of the easiest ways to tell when you're looking at pre-Rebellion artwork is that the earlier versions always had pink hair, while Nagisa has white hair. This also led to a lot of mortified Mami/Charlotte shippers having to explain themselves, as Rebellion also revealed that Nagisa is quite a bit younger than Mami (though the two do have a fairly close relationship in the film).
    • Puella Magi Kazumi Magica depicted an incubator named Juubey with a different design and personality, which meant that stories featuring incubators besides Kyubey popped up pretty regularly in the early days of the fandom. Quite a few even suggested that there was a different one for every town or region. Later official material more directly suggested that Kyubey is the only true version of an Incubator, or at least the only one on Earth, and has been active worldwide for as far back as the timeline goes. Kazumi itself went on to show that the aforementioned Juubey was actually an artificial being made from one of Kyubey's corpses, and had Kyubey strongly imply that Juubey was one-of-a-kind.
    • A common Fandom-Specific Plot was "what was going on with one of the other historical magical girls?", most commonly Jeanne d'Arc. Needless to say, Puella Magi Tart Magica quashed a lot of these by showing La Pucelle's actual career in great detail.
  • Reborn! (2004):
    • Goes to an extent too because there was Ryohei/Kyoko, Ryohei/Colonello, Ryohei/whoever the hell people liked pairing with him but Amano Jossed everyone by canoning Ryohei/Hana but saying that'll probably end with a Ship War. Not that many people gave a crap about Ryohei anyway. Amano likes Jossing people a lot seeing as most of her plot points descend from random possibly LSD caused ideas.
    • Tsuna's box animal was also up for debate for a long time until it was canon'd going against everyone's ideas.
    • The 6 real funeral wreaths did anyone honestly guess that Kikyo is the CLOUD guardian?
  • Slayers:
    • In the end of the first Non-Serial Movie, the ancestor of one of the heroes is able to get together with the elf girl he's in love with because of the Time Travel plot Lina creates. However, the creator of the Light Novel series (and the entire franchise) spoke in an interview that the elf and the human ancestor, in the end, didn't wind up together because of the implications of a disturbing Mayfly–December Romance... as in, because elves in this franchise age at half the speed that humans do, then the girl would still be considered a child while the human grows into manhood.
    • Initially, Zelgadiss speculates whether the priest Rezo is his grandfather or great-grandfather (as he's old to the point that Zelgadiss cannot clearly pinpoint how they're related) and Kanzaka confirmed that he's three generations removed in another interview. However, when the anime was first translated, a mishap caused the fandom to believe that Rezo was both, leaving rumors of incest running amok in Zelgadiss' family. One wouldn't gain the contrary evidence unless they either found a translation of the interviews or read the first translated novel (which used the correct implication).
  • A common fan guess for SPY × FAMILY was that the family's new dog would be named Peanut, for Anya's Trademark Favorite Food. Instead, he was named Bond, referencing Bondman, the title character of her favorite series. (Endo had considered Peanuts as a name, but decided against it to avoid trouble with what he thought was another white dog of the same name.)
  • The new OVA-verse Tenchi Muyo! installments Jossed many of the assumptions the fanbase had come to hold dear. For instance, that Tenchi's Bumbling Dad Nobuyuki was a Muggle, instead of being in on the Masquerade with Katsuhito/Yosho. Fans tend to ignore the new installment, but usually not because of the Jossing.
  • In Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE-, almost all the fans were certain that Syaoran was the same Syaoran as in Cardcaptor Sakura, coming off as slightly reluctant to woo his obvious crush because he was already committed to her Alternate Universe-equivalent. Turns out, he isn't CCS Syaoran, but the son of an alternate universe version of CCS Syaoran, using his dad's name and abilities. He's been romancing an alternate universe clone of his mom, and has always known about it. Cue the Abandon Shipping of a canon pairing by a decent chunk of the fanbase. This has actually been even further Jossed, in that the theories spawned by finding out who his parents basically are were all wrong. The second Syaoran is actually the son of the clones reincarnated as opposed to the CCS couple, which has quite broken a lot of brains.
  • In the Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's fandom it was a popular theory that Z-ONE's true identity was Yusei from the ruined future. Episode 148 even went on a big tease with showing Z-ONE having the same face as Yusei. But instead he turned out to be a random scientist in the future who had genetically modified his body to have Yusei's exact appearance, sans part of the head. Fans were not happy about this.

    Board Games 
  • Apparently there was some fanfic of the then-fictional board game "Escape from Zyzzlvaria" invented for a 2002 MIT Mystery Hunt puzzle, written when it was announced the board game would be defictionalized for the 2009 Hunt. When game character "Captain Blastoid" first appeared in the flesh, played by Jennifer Braun, the fic about a male Blastoid was suddenly a Gender Flip.
  • Due to a certain house rule becoming so prevalent that many people don't actually realize that it isn't an official rule, the instructions for most modern Monopoly sets specify that nothing at all happens when you land on Free Parking.

    Comic Books 
  • There was some speculation that Grant Morrison's second volume of Batman, Incorporated would be ignoring the DC reboot, and that it would be the last book taking place in the "classic" DC Universe. This led to even wilder rumors that Morrison had threatened to walk away from DC if they forced him to "submit" to the new continuity. This was revealed to be complete nonsense when Morrison killed off Damian Wayne, an event that had massive repercussions throughout the reboot Batman titles (even acting like a bit of a Bat Family Crossover).
  • A meta example: One of the early fan theories about The Night Gwen Stacy Died was that its main purpose was to kill off the Green Goblin for good because the situation where he knew the secret of Spider-Man's identity was too dangerous to be allowed to continue. This, according to the theory, would have required a crime so heinous that readers would accept Norman Osborn's death as permanent and would not clamour for his return. Then Harry Osborn became the new Green Goblin and it turned out he too had found out that Peter Parker was Spider-Man. And he was allowed to survive without being made to forget...
  • When The New Universe was introduced in 1986, many fans wrote in to speculate that this universe was the one created at the end of Secret Wars II. Word of God insisted that this was not the case. Then fans began to speculate that the New Universe's "White Event" was a result of the burst of energy released at that time. Word of God denied this, and within a few issues the White Event was explained in continuity.
  • Final Crisis:
    • A popular theory was Mandrakk was a corrupted version of the original Monitor from Crisis on Infinite Earths. However, between Mandrakk showing up in DC Rebirth after Dark Nights: Metal, and Metal and Justice League (2018) featuring Mar Novu and presenting Mar as the Monitor who appeared all the way back in CoIE, this theory was proven false.
    • Fan speculation was that Dan Turpin died following the Flashes and Black Racer exorcising Darkseid from his body. The Absolute and Essential Editions have an expanded version of the story that shows Turpin survived, though briefly dazed by the experience.

    Comic Strips 

  • Some players of the Half-Life mod Half-Life: Echoes thought that the player character Candidate 12 was Azian Vance, Eli's wife and Alyx's mother. Despite references to Candidate 12's gender being male, mod creator MrGnang confirmed on the Facepunch forums that Candidate 12 was not Azian, and alluded that her mangled corpse can be found in a closet at the Vance's home in the final sequence of the game.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Star Wars:
    • Prior to the release of the prequels, it was widely accepted by fans that the Clone Wars were fought by the Republic against an army or armies of clones (after all, wars are usually named according to who the victor fought against, rather than by the nature of the victor's army), and that the Clone Wars happened well before the Empire formed. When the Essential Guides (compendiums of movie and EU knowledge) were revised and republished starting after the release of Episode II, a lot of time was spent retconning the previous versions of the Guides, often with the excuse that in the wake of the Empire's rise, much information was lost or destroyed, and there were some rogue clones.
    • Much of Boba Fett's EU history was tossed out in the Prequels as well. There is no mention of Mandalorians, and Fett winds up being a clone of his "father". Later EU sources show that Boba's father Jango was in fact a Mandalorian, and also that some of the erroneous information about Boba's past was actually from Jango's life. Other parts come from Boba using Jango's late mentor's name as an alias during his early life, and from a rogue Clone Trooper (who would of course look exactly like Boba under the helmet) being mistaken for him.
    • Jedi family life. And then the movie implies celibacy, but Lucas Josses that again with a statement in an interview that the Jedi have casual sex and only casual sex. There are also some Jedi that, due to the nature of their species, are allowed to have offspring, so long as they avoid personal attachment (such as Ki-Adi-Mundi).
    • Even back in the days of the original trilogy, there was much fan speculation going around, which was then Jossed by the second and third movies. A somewhat infamous example of this happening to official media is the novel Splinter of the Mind's Eye, which was published only a year after the first movie when the possibility of any film sequels was still uncertain. As a result, it has a number of things which may not directly contradict later movies, but do at least seem pretty weird when you consider later plot developments. Namely, the hints of a Luke/Leia romance when Return of the Jedi revealed they're siblings.
    • In Star Wars, the term "Star Destroyer" led to some fan speculation that because they are called Star Destroyers, that meant they were destroyer-class vessels, even though they have also been referred to as cruisers, battleships, and dreadnoughts as well, and Darth Vader referred to the Executor as his Star Destroyer in ESB. Eventually, in Starships of the Galaxy Saga Edition, there was a note in the Super Star Destroyer section establishing that Star Destroyer is not really a class of ship in the traditional sense so much as a design philosophy (lots of guns and a dagger shape to be able to point all those guns forward), and that Star Destroyer is meant to be capitalized as to distinguish it from star cruisers, star dreadnoughts, and actual destroyer-class vessels that happen to be starships.
    • After Revenge of the Sith came out, a common theory (usually in refutation to the claim that it was a "plot hole" that the Jedi prophecy that Anakin would bring balance to the Force kind of went south on them) was that Anakin did "bring balance to the Force" by killing so many Jedi until there were only two left (Yoda and Obi-Wan) to match the only two Sith. In other words, the Jedi failed to notice that the Light Side was actually stronger than the Dark Side, so "bringing balance to the Force" would be a bad thing from their point of view. Lucas later clarified that, no, "bringing balance to the Force" really did mean killing all the Sith (because they were causing the imbalance in the Force), which Anakin did at the end of Return of the Jedi.
    • Back in the 'Zine days, Yoda's enigmatic "There is another" during The Empire Strikes Back was widely interpreted as referencing Lando: this was partly due to the way the film was cut. His "superhuman" interpersonal abilities and cape also factored into the theories. The actual character was brought up a few times, but almost universally shot down. And of course, the popular Luke/Leia ship also got rather emphatically sunk in '83.
    • In The Force Awakens Rey is shown to have been abandoned by her parents on the desert world of Jakku as a child. Since then she's been counting down the days since they left, and she spends much of the film hoping that she'll eventually reunite with them. In the lead up to The Last Jedi fan theories exploded about who her parents could be. Almost everyone in Star Wars canon was considered at some point, from Luke or Han to secondary characters like Sabine Wren or Del Meeko. In The Last Jedi it was revealed in an epic Meta Twist that Rey's parents were nobody important, just random junk dealers who traded her for money. Needless to say 95% of fan theories out there were instantly debunked, although some desperate fans have defended sticking to their fanon by making up elaborate reasons why Kylo could have lied. note 
    • Yet another notorious fan theory was that Snoke was actually Darth Plaguis. This theory remained popular for months after the film's release until story group member Pablo Hidalgo finally confirmed via Twitter that they are two separate characters, and that Darth Plagieus is dead. Like really dead.
    • Before the prequels came out, it was almost universally accepted that Jedi Masters did not use lightsabers. Roger Ebert even mentioned this on the episode of Ebert&Roeper where they reviewed Attack of the Clones. Why did Obi-Wan carry one, then? Because he never claimed to be a Jedi Master in the original trilogy, only a Jedi Knight; this was another bit of fanon that was jossed.
  • The promotional campaign leading up to the release of Cloverfield was more or less intended to produce Epileptic Trees of all varieties, which it did. Fan speculation identified the monster, unseen in trailers, to be any number of previously established beings—Cthulhu, Godzilla, Voltron, Donkey Kong Jesus Riding on a Puff of Smoke—instead of what it actually was, an immature sea creature that was awakened from dormancy from a falling satellite and became huge after exposure to a soft drink additive. This is not spelled out in the movie, but it's All There in the Manual. Probably...
  • It is likely that David Lynch's reluctance to confirm or deny anything about the ambiguous aspects of his work is to avoid offending his fans in this way. He has also admitted that sometimes he simply films things that pop into his mind and seem interesting, and doesn't worry so much about explaining them.
  • It was taken as gospel that the Audi 8 Decepticon in the Transformers Film Series was a reformatted Barricade. However, he was later revealed as Sideways.
  • James Bond:
    • For many years (and explicitly stated in the original, parody version of Casino Royale (1967)) there were fan theories that the name James Bond was a pseudonym used by the agent in question, and passed down to his successor upon the previous 007's death or retirement. This was conclusively disproven in Skyfall when Bond visits the graves of his parents, Andrew Bond and Monique Delacroix Bond, and is referred to by the family gamekeeper (who has known him all his life but doesn't know what he does for a living) as "James".
    • A fan theory (not Jossed) hypothesizes that Robert Brown's M (the second M, after Bernard Lee and before Judi Dench) is in fact a background admiral Brown had played in The Spy Who Loved Me. This doesn't explain the film series' tendency to reuse other actors, however...
    • Miss Moneypenny's first name was not stated in any of the novels or films, and a lot of fans took to "Jane" after the publication of Samantha Weinberg's The Moneypenny Diaries, if for no other reason that it was the only option presented. Skyfall, however, establishes "Eve" as the first name of at least that film's Moneypenny.
  • Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • Iron Man 2:
      • Thanks the novelization, it was believed by many that the new element Tony created was Vibranium, a fictional metal that is very prominent in the Black Panther books. Then Captain America: The First Avenger came out the following year and established that Vibranium was already a preexisting material, and that Tony's father was already working with it back during World War II.
    • Thor:
      • Thor: The Dark World debunked the popular fan assumption that Loki is a physical shapeshifter. In the movie, his shapeshifting is achieved with illusion. No, this Loki did not give birth to a horse.
    • Captain America: The First Avenger:
      • A popular theory was that the redheaded S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Amanda Righetti portrayed was Sharon Carter. This was shot down when it was announced that Emily VanCamp would be playing Carter in the sequel.
    • The Avengers:
      • For a while, it was popular fanon that the "cellist" girlfriend Agent Coulson mentioned in the movie was Wanda Maximoff, apparently based on the misconception that Wanda was a cellist in the comics. This was revealed to be untrue when the actual cellist showed up in an episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., portrayed by Amy Acker.
      • A number of people also thought that Loki's Scepter was created from or powered by the Tesseract, explaining their similarities. In Avengers: Age of Ultron, the Scepter turns out to be the Mind Stone, while the Tesseract is revealed to be the Space Stone.
      • A very popular fan theory was that Loki had been Brainwashed by Thanos between the events of Thor and The Avengers, explaining the alleged Villain Decay some felt he suffered from in the latter film. Thor: The Dark World however makes no mention of any sort of brainwashing, and Loki never once tries to justify his actions by claiming to have been a victim.
    • Thor: The Dark World:
      • It was a popular theory that the Aether was supposed to be the Power Stone, since it's red and strengthens whoever wields it. The actual Power Stone was later introduced in Guardians of the Galaxy, where it was revealed to be purple in this continuity. It turns out the Aether is actually the Reality Stone instead.
    • Captain America: The Winter Soldier:
      • A common theory many fans had was that Alexander Pierce was actually the Red Skull in disguise with The Nth Doctor effect applied to explain Hugo Weaving's absence, as Weaving stated he wouldn't be return for any sequels. It also made sense as the Skull had pulled this type of trick more than once in the comics to cheat death, which also caused him to change appearances. However, while Pierce did turn out to be Evil All Along, he was acting entirely on his own.
    • Avengers: Age of Ultron:
      • When it was announced that there would be a "Big death" in the movie, a lot of people speculated that it would be War Machine, since some see him as redundant when Iron Man is around. It was actually Quicksilver who wound up dying.
      • The trailers showed a brief scene of a scantily clad woman dancing near Thor while he was being electrocuted. Her outfit, coupled with some unverified rumors, caused some to believe the woman was Mantis, another Avenger from the comics. In the actual film, the dancing woman is just a nameless extra who briefly appears as part of a hallucination. Mantis later wound up debuting in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.
      • There was a dark-skinned bald woman seen in the trailers, and the fandom went wild guessing who she might be. Theories ranged from anyone to Hela, Black Panther's little sister Shuri, Death and even the above-mentioned Mantis. The mysterious woman was cut from the finished movie, but it's been confirmed she was tied to the Norns from Norse mythology.
      • Some speculated that Andy Serkis' mystery role was going to be Professor Phineas Horton, the scientist who invented The Vision. He actually played Klaw, while Professor Horton was Adapted Out of the Vision's origin entirely.
      • When Claudia Kim was cast, theories abounded about who she was playing, with common guesses being Jocasta, The Wasp, Su Yin, Madame Hydra and even a Gender Flipped version of the Mandarin. She actually played Helen Cho, an extremely minor character in the comics.
    • Captain America: Civil War:
      • When it was announced that William Hurt was reprising his role as General Ross, the rumor mill went into overtime with speculation that Ross would become the Red Hulk in the movie. He didn't.
    • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2:
      • When the film was in the early pre-production stages, James Gunn mentioned that he'd be introducing one of his favorite superheroes as a new member of the team. This caused a bunch of speculation that the new Guardian in question would be someone like Moondragon, Adam Warlock, Captain Marvel, or even one of the Silver Age Guardians like Starhawk or Vance Astro. In the end, it turned out to be Mantis, a character a lot of fans had overlooked. However, Starhawk is also in the movie, played by Sylvester Stallone.
    • Captain Marvel (2019):
      • After Avengers: Infinity War ended with half the universe dusted by Thanos' Snap, several more pessimistic fans believed that The Stinger for Captain Marvel would show her being killed by the Snap as well, making Nick Fury's emergency signal to her at the end of the aforementioned film All for Nothing. This was jossed by the movie's actual post-credits scene, which shows a scene where Captain Marvel meets the rest of the Avengers for the first time.
    • Avengers: Endgame:
      • Many had assumed that Aussie actress Katherine Langford had been cast as Kate Bishop when Disney announced her casting once reshoot wrapped up in Fall 2018. Rumors especially kicked into high gear once a Hawkeye show co-starring the character got announced for Disney+ not too soon thereafter. Turns out she had only one filmed one scene as an adult version of Tony Stark’s daughter, Morgan. It would have taken place in soul world and been similar to the one between Thanos and Gamora at the end of Infinity War. She’d say she forgives him for dying but the scene got cut from the final film as test audiences found it confusing and repetitive.
  • When the marketing for Jurassic World revealed the film's main villain to be a genetically engineered hybrid dinosaur called the Indominus rex, shown to be far smarter and more aggressive than the other, comparatively "purer" dinosaurs, fans began speculating that the creature's intelligence and violent behavior was due to having human DNA thrown into the mix. Colin Trevorrow later confirmed on Twitter that the Indos have no human DNA, the intelligence comes from Velociraptor genes and the aggression comes from the fact that it was raised in isolation and thus has no idea what its place in the food chain is, causing it to needlessly kill everything it sees.
  • The promotional materials for Godzilla (2014) drove fans nuts with an endless of stream of clues suggesting things that ended up not being true. Among the most prominent were the idea that the centipede/lizard thing in the initial teaser trailer was going to be one of Godzilla's enemies in the film (it was actually designed just for the teaser) or that Rodan was going to appear in the film (the flying monster in the later trailers is actually the male MUTO). A somewhat stranger theory was that Godzilla's iconic atomic breath was going to be left out of this version, due to it not being featured in any of the trailers (it turns out the filmmakers simply saved it for a dramatic reveal late in the film, so showing it in the ads would have been a huge spoiler of how the climax goes).
  • When it was revealed that Mattel's toy line for The Dark Knight included an action figure of Deathstroke (complete with a more realistic, "Nolanized" design), comic fans began speculating that this meant the character would appear in the film as a secondary antagonist. It eventually turned out that Deathstroke was not in the movie, and that the new design was merely done to make the toy fit the visual aesthetic of Christopher Nolan's universe.
  • DC Extended Universe:
    • Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice has quite a bit of speculation before its release that would get debunked by the film:
      • Rumors of Wonder Woman being of Kryptonian descent started with a fansite blog post merely speculating about her portrayal, which snowballed into something Zack Snyder and co. were allegedly actually doing. This was denied by all in the know and eventually debunked when word of her Amazon/demigod origin got out.
      • There was rumor alongside what appeared to be a studio conference picture circulating around the internet saying that the film will be split into two, with the first part subtitled "Enter the Knight" and the second being "Dawn of Justice." But Henry Cavill reassures that ''Dawn of Justice'' is still one movie, which confirms that the picture is fake.
      • A common rumor going into the release of the film would be that Scoot McNairy would be playing Jimmy Olsen. However, the release of the film has established that McNairy was playing a Canon Foreigner named Wallace Keefe while Michael Cassidy plays Olsen in a minor role.
      • It was commonly believed that Ray Fisher's cameo as Cyborg would just show him as regular Victor Stone. The film shows him becoming a cyborg.
      • For a time, Callan Mulvey's role was widely speculated to be Metallo. Instead, he's the KGBeast.
      • Because of the elements from Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, everyone assumed Bruce would become Batman again after retiring at some point in the past. In the film, there's no hint of him having ever retired.
      • An early report speculated that Commissioner Gordon had already died in the DC Extended Universe before BvS. J. K. Simmons being cast in the role for Justice League (2017) debunked this.
    • Justice League (2017), in addition to confirming that the DCEU version of Commissioner Gordon is still alive:
      • In June 2016, rumors of Justice League being subtitled either United, Angels and Demons, Gods Among Us, or Gods Among Men swiftly spread on various websites. Just hours later, Geoff Johns declared on Twitter that the title is just Justice League.
      • There was some confusion about Justice League Part Two being cancelled after this dropped the Part One subtitle, but later reports clarified that it isn't — both movies are going to be standalone stories instead of one story in two parts, as was widely assumed and reported. Producer Deborah Snyder (Zack's wife) later said the latter option was never actually planned in the first place, suggesting that the "Part 2" label was only there as a formality. However, in a bit of dueling Jossings, it was later revealed that there were originally plans for Justice League to lead directly into a sequel, but this idea had been dropped following the negative reception of Batman v Superman.
      • It was consistently believed Darkseid would be the Big Bad of the film, but it turns out he will instead be the Greater-Scope Villain to Steppenwolf.
  • Some watchers of Get Out (2017) believe that Rose, and to a lesser extent, her brother were in fact Unwitting Pawns of their parents, perhaps due to her mom's hypnotic abilities. In an interview with Seth Myers on his talk show, Allison Williams said otherwise, saying that Rose was not under any type of mind control or hypnosis or anything and was a willing participant in her family's schemes.
  • A long standing urban legend surrounding Romeo and Juliet (1968) was that Olivia Hussey was refused entry into the premiere for being too young to see her own nudity. This comes from the publicity gimmick that reported her age as being fifteen at the time, when she was only that age when she was cast and turned sixteen during production. In her autobiography, she confirmed that she didn't shoot the nude scene until she turned sixteen - and therefore was the right age to attend the premiere. And even if she had been fifteen, she could legally have viewed the picture if a parent or guardian was with her. This is also possibly confusing Olivia with Mark Dightam, who was too young to see the 1971 version of Macbeth that he'd appeared nude in; that was because he was eleven and it was more the film's Family-Unfriendly Violence and dark themes that would have been inappropriate for a child to see.

  • Many theories about Harry Potter have been repeatedly Jossed with the release of each successive book, with The Deathly Hallows Jossing the most.
    • Numerous Fan Fics featuring a female Blaise Zabini got Jossed when The Half-Blood Prince was released.
    • Likewise, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows reveals that Ginny's real full name is Ginevra, rather than Virginia. That theory was more prevalent among American readers, where Virginia is a more common name than in the UK.
    • In the lead-up to Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, a majority of the fans believed that Neville Longbottom would be the one to kill Voldemort's Psycho Supporter Bellatrix Lestrange after the fifth book revealed that she was the leader of the group of Death Eaters who had tortured Neville's parents into insanity. Instead, Bellatrix is killed by Molly Weasley after killing her son Fred during the Final Battle while Neville gets to kill Voldemort's pet snake (and final Horcrux) Nagini.
    • After the release of Deathly Hallows, a rapid succession of ship-related Jossings ensued when Word of God informed the eager fans that three of their beloved characters ended up with love interests who were not even introduced in the series. This earned a fan nickname of its own: "Getting Rolfed," named after Luna's husband who was introduced in this way.
    • Also after Deathly Hallows, Rowling even managed to Joss the fanfiction writers who speculated about Dumbledore, particularly his romantic feelings. Given the many bizarre ideas written about him, stunning the fan base with the news he was: 1) gay all along; and 2) smart enough to keep it in his pants and out of the Quibbler was actually the nicest way in the world to snap back at the ficcers. The large section of the fanbase who were convinced that Dumbledore wasn't really dead got Jossed, with Jo stating outright that the one thing magic absolutely 'cannot' do is bring people back from the dead.
    • A persistent one was Harry Potter and the Green Flame Torch, a meme originating in a continuation fanfic on the Harry Potter Connection which spread across the internet. J.K. Rowling herself memorably sporked the speculation but even today "Green Flame Torch" turns up 86 hits on FanFiction.Net.
    • One of the most popular theories was Sirius being gay, due to his Ho Yay friendship with Lupin (and, according to the Yaoi Fangirls, the rest of Marauders). When he was proven as straight by Deathly Hallowsnote , the fans immediately started claiming he might have been bisexual, despite their previous insistence that he only liked men, just men, no girls in the picture, really.
    • During the Three-Year Summer, one of the few facts known for sure about Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix was that Arabella Figg, Harry's apparently Muggle babysitter from the first book, would turn out to be more than she appeared. Naturally, fanfiction assumed that she would play a big part in the story, portraying her usually as a badass Cool Old Lady who becomes the new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. Some fanfics even Hand Waved her old age, making her a hot Action Girl in a magical disguise. When Phoenix actually came out, it was revealed in the first two chapters that she was a Muggle Born of Mages whom Dumbledore had assigned to keep an eye on Harry. She had a very minor role in the book and was very different in personality from what fans had expected, being a Cloudcuckoolander Maiden Aunt type. In any case, the fanon version of Arabella died a quick death after that.
  • The Rise of Kyoshi came out in the summer of 2019, and with that, rendered most, if not all, fan-works exploring Kyoshi's past obsolete given that virtually nobody predicted the titular Avatar's mother was an Air Nomad, or that she and Kyoshi's father were actually connected to a group of petty criminals called the Daofei. The book also put to rest her status as the universe's Memetic Psychopath (which was never serious to begin with). In her appearances in original show, she twice takes responsibility for killing a war lord named Chin the Conquerer. Aang points out to her that she didn't technically kill him, he refused to move. She says she doesn't see the distinction because she would have killed him if push came to shove. She is also the only Avatar to outright tell Aang that he needs to kill the Fire Lord so people liked to make jokes that she killed everyone who ever got in her way. It's made clear here that she doesn't follow Thou Shalt Not Kill (she kills a gang leader and doesn't feel bad about it) but she doesn't solve all her problems by killing people like the jokes would have you believe. She's set up to kill a corrupt governor until she finds out he's a kid who's not much younger than her and he's just doing what his dad did without much though but she doesn't do it. She scares the hell out of him and makes it clear if he doesn't get his act together, she will kill him but she protects him from an assassin and lets him go. He takes her seriously. Sure, she's a Pragmatic Hero but she's still the manifestation of the spirit of light and good in the world just like any Avatar.
  • The Wheel of Time:
    • The most popular theory was that the Forsaken Demandred was in disguise as Mazrim Taim, the false Dragon who knew how to test to see if a man could channel. There were also other hints that compared the two, but the whole thing was Jossed when Robert Jordan blankly stated that Mazrim Taim was not Demandred. Jordan was notorious for refusing to give straight answers, reputedly because he was amused by the rabid fan discussions on some of the more hotly debated topics. Even this Word of God came only after fairly extensive evidence against the Taimandred theory was published in Book 9 — it wasn't enough to convince some. The final book put the last nails in the coffin by having Demandred and Taim appear side-by-side in the same scene. Even so, every now and then a new reader will connect the dots and come up with the Taimandred theory on their own, prompting agonized groans from every Wo T forum on the web.
    • Once Sanderson took the reins after Jordan's Author Existence Failure, he deliberately put an end to a number of various theories and mysteries that had been left hanging (see also, "who killed Asmodean", one of the things Jordan found too amusing to provide an answer for). One of those was a different Demandred theory: that he had taken up the identity of King Roedran of Murandy. Roedran had been regularly mentioned but never seen as he consolidated power in the normally laxly governed nation of Murandy, and the books had provided information that Demandred had secured rulership somewhere in the world. In the last book, A Memory Of Light, Roedran finally appears and Rand, the protagonist who is also well aware that Demandred is unaccounted for, immediately corners him only to confoundedly realize, "You're not him."
  • In the Dragaera series_
    • A popular fan theory was that Kragar was actually legendary assassin Mario Greymist, even though the author Steven Brust insisted something like "no one is anyone else" which isn't actually true since Sethra Lavode and Kiera the Thief are one and the same. This was jossed in Dzur where Mario makes an appearance.
    • A popular belief that pigs either didn't exist on Dragaera, or were referred to as "kethna", got shot down in Athyra.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire:
    • In the latter sense of the word, George R. R. Martin is particularly infamous in his series for destroying any happy relationships and suddenly and without warning killing off random good/light-grey characters. There's a reason it's a poster child for the "Anyone Can Die" trope. In the first sense of the term, he has explicitly shot down a theory regarding a minor character who appears in Bran's storyline (Coldhands, who was believed to be some sort of zombified version of Benjen Stark). Notably, the TV show ignored this and made the theory canon, underlining the fact that, by the showrunners' own admission, they are writing their own Gecko Ending.
    • In an example of inter-medium Jossing: fans were a little upset with the Red Wedding, and built a lot of theories around the fact that Robb's wife, Jeyne Westerling, who did not attend the festivities, could possibly be pregnant and/or a mole. GRRM is on record that, even if those things are true, "The Adventures Of Baby Stark" are not going to be a part of the song of ice and fire. The TV series enforced this by explicitly getting his wife Talisa Maegyr pregnant and then having her be the first to die at the Red Wedding.
  • Older Than Steam: Between publication of Book I and Book II of Don Quixote, several novels written by another author featuring the title character were published. In Book II, Cervantes specifically referred to the non-canonical books as being false, going so far as to have the characters in the novel read these alternate stories and deride them as ludicrous inaccuracies.
  • After the early books in the Twilight series, many fans were asking about the idea of vampire babies, and Stephenie Meyer apparently Jossed this by saying that vampires couldn't get pregnant. Cue outraged claims of outright lies when Breaking Dawn came out and Edward gets Bella which point Meyer calmly points out that her Exact Words were that vampires couldn't get pregnant, and that she had never outright addressed the concept of a male vampire impregnating a human female, instead relying on the fans' own assumptions to keep that plot detail a secret until she was ready to reveal it — turning this into an I Knew It!.
  • Fans of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy tried to find hidden meaning in the fact that the Ultimate Answer to Life, The Universe and Everything was "42" while the Ultimate Question was "What do you get when you multiply six by nine?". Some observed that, in Base 13, 6 x 9 is 42. Adams famously responded "I don't write jokes in Base 13". In the same vein, attempts to assign deeper meaning to the number 42 in the first place were Jossed when he said he picked the number at random, decided it sounded good, and went with it. Stephen Fry stated, possibly jokingly, "Douglas told me in the strictest confidence exactly why 42. The answer is fascinating, extraordinary and, when you think hard about it, completely obvious. Nonetheless amazing for that. Remarkable really. But sadly I cannot share it with anyone and the secret must go with me to the grave. Pity, because it explains so much beyond the books. It really does explain the secret of life, the universe, and everything."
  • According to a famous anecdote, Hungarian poet János Arany once came across the notes a teacher had written about his poems. After reading the phrase "The poet is trying to say..." for the umpteenth time, Arany succinctly wrote on the margin: "The hell I was."
  • According to Isaac Asimov, when he was in school taking a course on modern literature, a man stood up at the back of the class and to the instructor loudly proclaimed: "That's not at all what was written!" When the teacher asked who the man was, he got the reply: "I'm the author," to which the instructor succinctly answered: "Then your opinion is really irrelevant here." Asimov accepted this in good grace, though (inevitably for Asimov) he would use the incident in his short story "The Immortal Bard".
  • During a radio discussion of the popular young children's book The Tiger Who Came To Tea the participants suggested their theories about what the tiger represented — the intrusion of danger into the comfortable world of childhood, that sort of thing. When the author came on she said no, it was just a silly story about a tiger.
  • Many EU Star Trek novels were Jossed by new movies and the Enterprise series.
    • One memorable example is Star Trek: Federation by Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens, which was written mostly from the viewpoint of Zefram Cochrane, as well as Kirk and Picard. For one thing, he's much less of a jerk in this book than in First Contact. The book even included the origin of the Starfleet symbol (a sketch of a warp field by Cochrane). In the book, Cochrane's flight happens before World War III, which he waits out on Alpha Centauri, while Colonel Greene and his Nazi-like troops attempt to exterminate all non-Optimals. A well-written, emotional novel, casually brushed off in favor of something with the Borg.
    • Diane Duane's Rihannsu was hit with this repeatedly. She began writing the Rihannsu novels during the Star Trek: The Original Series movie period, and a not inconsiderable amount of what she came up with for the Romulans was Jossed by the '90s and 2000s TV series.
      • The Rihannsu version of the Earth-Romulan War has the Federation discovering the Romulans when the latter had only sublight vessels, albeit an extensive capability to that end. Based on prior bad experience with the Abusive Precursors of the Orions that sparked the Sundering, the Romulans misinterpreted things and built a warfleet to attack the next Federation ship to visit the Romulan system. They captured it, gained warp drive and sundry other tech from it, and things went downhill from there until the Romulans were destroying entire fleets, at which point the Federation decided to cut its losses and negotiated a peace treaty by subspace radio, designating a swathe of space surrounding the Romulan sun Eisn as the "Romulan Star Empire".

        The Enterprise episode "Minefield" shows the Romulans as already possessing warp drive and cloaking devices at First Contact with United Earth in the 2150s, and also confirms that "Romulan" is indeed their own name for themselves, not just what humans call them. While some of the Star Trek: Enterprise Relaunch novels (effectively ENT seasons 5 through 7, written partially using the notes of Manny Coto et al.) borrowed parts of Diane Duane's worldbuilding, the Earth-Romulan War instead took place before the Federation, and in fact was a catalyst for its creation out of an alliance of Alpha and Beta Quadrant races (chiefly humanity, the Andorians, the Vulcans, and the Tellarites) that joined forces to beat the Romulans.
      • The Vulcans are stated in The Romulan Way to have joined the Federation during the Earth-Romulan War, and identified the Romulans as their long-lost brethren, whereas in Enterprise the Vulcans are a founding member of the Federation.
      • The Remans, referred to as Havrannssu ("the Travelers") in The Romulan Way, are said to be a frequently dissident faction or ethnicity of Romulans who were forced onto the Sundering's colony ships involuntarily, and Remus is a Class M garden world. In Star Trek: Nemesis, Remus is a barren planet tidally locked to Eisn, and the Remans are a different species entirely.
      • The structure of the Romulan government is given as a series of aristocratic councils referred to as the Tricameron, with among other things twelve praetors ("fvillham") serving in a separate chamber from the Senate ("deihuit"). The TV series beginning with Star Trek: The Next Generation showed the Senate as a unicameral legislature, with a single praetor apparently equivalent to a prime minister.
    • William Shatner's own novels dealing with the Mirror Universe had the origin of the split Jossed by the "In the Mirror, Darkly" episode. This one actually followed the First Contact movie with Cochrane flipping a coin to decide on whether to tell the Vulcans about the Borg. In the Trek 'verse, he doesn't. In the Mirror Universe, he does. They believe him and form a more militaristic union to prepare. It goes downhill from there.
  • This happens frequently in The Dresden Files fandom, either due to new books or Word of God, and is referred to as "being Butchered."
  • Ray Bradbury has said of Fahrenheit 451 that, despite the interpretation of nearly everyone, ever, the novel is not about censorship, but the role of television in destroying interest in literature. He walked out of a class at UCLA where the students insisted that the popular interpretation was correct.
  • Among the Warrior Cats fandom, there was a popular theory that Pinestar was the father of Firestar. However, it was jossed on the author's Facebook. Although it doesn't stop people from coming up with the theory...
  • In the final book of Percy Jackson and the Olympians, a major plot point involves the titular character obtaining the Curse of Achilles which includes one vulnerable spot that feels like a thousand volts of electricity arcing through his body when touched. Don't think for a second that shippers didn't pick up on and make good use of this, all of which got thrown out the window in the sequel series, The Heroes of Olympus, when Percy promptly loses the Curse in the second chapter of the first book that he actually appears in.
  • In 1893 Sir Arthur Conan Doyle killed off Sherlock Holmes in The Final Problem, and John Kendrick Bangs took this opportunity to write In Pursuit of the House-boat (1897), a fantasy novel in which which the detective goes to the afterlife and meets a bunch of famous historical figures. But this fanciful tale of Holmes' post-mortem adventures was rudely jossed when Conan Doyle revealed, in 1903, that the detective had never really gone over the waterfall after all.
  • A fictional, Older Than Feudalism example: In Lucian's True History, the narrator gets to the Isles of the Blest, and meets, among others, Homer. Homer tells him that everyone's wrong about where he's from (he's actually Babylonian) and that all the lines bracketed as not really Homeric by scholars are, in fact, his. Then the narrator asks why he began the Iliad with the word menis [wrath]: "and he said it came to him that way, without his intending anything." All this was pretty clearly meant to make fun of the various theories held by scholars at the time.
  • In the Alex Rider series, many readers believed Alex to have died at the end of Scorpia, but there are four books following that. Also, author Anthony Horowitz stated that a major character who had appeared in all the books so far would die in the final book Scorpia Rising. Readers are led to believe that it's Smithers, when really it's Alex's housekeeper Jack Starbright who dies.
  • The last book of Origami Yoda Jossed the fan theory that Harvey likes Amy.
  • The ending of The Giver led many school study groups to believe that the story's final pages depict a Dying Dream, since they have Jonas departing the world he grew up in and reaching "Elsewhere" after he and the reader find out exactly what being Released to Elsewhere means. This theory was finally disproved when the sequel was written.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Friends:
    • A long circulating story was that Reese Witherspoon was meant to make more appearances as Rachel's sister Jill, but never returned because she didn't get on with Jennifer Aniston. Both actresses put that rumor to rest in 2018 when they announced a project together - saying that Reese was only contracted for two episodes and couldn't return again because of her film commitments.
    • It was also reported that Ellen DeGeneres had turned down the role of Phoebe. This stems from her sitcom Ellen originally having the title 'These Friends of Mine'.
  • How I Met Your Mother. In the episode "Legendaddy", it's revealed that Barney has a step-sister in college. Combined with the knowledge that The Mother was in college (at the end of season 4) and would meet Ted at Barney's wedding, it quickly became a popular and very plausible theory that The Mother was her. However, in Ring Up, Ted actually does date her, but they break up since she was too young (only 20). This, in turn, led to an Epileptic Trees theory that she actually was The Mother, since at the time of the wedding she'd be 21. Which actually would give a rationale for why it took 9 years for Ted to meet her: at the start of season 1, she was only 12.
  • Doctor Who:
    • Any idea that the modern series was a reboot (or that the TV movie was considered discontinuity, making Christopher Eccleston the real Eighth Doctor, David Tennant the Ninth and so on) was immediately thrown out once Sarah Jane Smith and K-9 appeared and Tennant's Doctor mentions regenerating "half a dozen times" in the same episode. In several episodes, starting with 2007's "Human Nature", Paul McGann's Doctor's face explicitly appears on screen.
    • Who fans eventually got used to being Jossed; the modern series in particular takes a perverse pleasure in contradicting Fanon without violating any actual Canon. The Doctor's references to his family in "The Empty Child", "The Doctor's Daughter", "Fear Her" and "Smith and Jones" have evoked particular Jossing. Even though his granddaughter Susan is introduced in the very first episode of the entire show, many fans maintained that the Doctor was asexual in some way (in part based upon a line of dialogue in the 1979 story "City of Death" in which the Doctor refers to a woman as "probably" being beautiful, and the show itself (due to Executive Meddling) eliminating all but the slightest hint of romance). In one of the Big Finish Doctor Who audios, the Doctor clearly and unequivocally says that he has never been a father, but (a) that's not part of the TV show, (b) the Doctor lies pretty often and (c) the MST3K Mantra is recommended with the sheer amount of writers the show has. It's been thoroughly shot down in the modern era as almost every Doctor to date has had a romantic connection with somebody (sometimes multiple somebodies), with the Doctor depicted as being in love with Rose Tyler, Clara Oswald and River Song — and marrying the latter. (Thirteen so far is the exception; while she's the subject of romantic feelings, she hasn't shown any romantic inclination herself.)
    • The Doctor's "you've been watching too much TV" reaction in "The Sound of Drums" to Martha's suggestion that the Master could be his brother is a particularly self-aware example, because the fandom had been throwing that idea around for years (although if the TV movie had been picked up for a series, that WAS their plan).
    • Before The End of Time, many fanfics were written to undo the Fate Worse than Death forced upon Donna Noble. At the end of Part I it appeared as if she was beginning to remember her time with the Doctor, but this is resolved by the Doctor putting some sort of 'release-valve' in her mind to protect her, and she spends most of Part II unconscious. She never does remember (and apparently there is absolutely nothing that can be done by anyone ever to help her), and now never will since it has been confirmed that her story is over and she will never appear in the series again. In effect, everything she was is Deader Than Dead. Number of fanfics Jossed: Too many to number, and they are still being written.
    • The appearance of John Hurt as the Doctor's regeneration during the Time War led to many fans thinking that he was an older version of McGann's Eighth Doctor. This fan theory was thrown out the window in the short "Night of the Doctor" which brought back McGann as the Eighth Doctor and showed how he regenerated into the Doctor from the Time War.
    • There's also the theory that the Daleks can't climb stairs. Verity Lambert said the only reason Daleks weren't seen elevating in the very early days was because it was too expensive/difficult to do a convincing job on screen. After that it was more habit than anything (the levitating Dalek in "Remembrance of the Daleks" had to stay close to the wall because it was supported by three men on the other side lifting it on poles).
      • Jossed for the first time in "Remembrance of the Daleks", when we first see a Dalek flying up a flight of stairs.
      • Daleks are seen hovering (albeit otherwise unmoving) in the previous Dalek story "Revelation of the Daleks", but it's only a brief scene and everyone forgets it.
      • Jossed again in "Dalek", when a guy climbs a flight of stairs and taunts his Dalek pursuer under the assumption that the Dalek can't get him. Then the Dalek says "ELEVATE" and floats off the ground...
      • And implicitly Jossed in "The Chase" (1965). We don't see Daleks in the act of climbing stairs, but we do see some upstairs from the spot where their time machine landed.
    • The revelation that Ian and Barbara were still alive and apparently The Ageless, in "Death of the Doctor" from The Sarah Jane Adventures, Jossed the very common grim darkfic fanon that gave Barbara the early death from breast cancer that claimed her actress Jacqueline Hill in real life, and ascribed it to her irradiation on Skaro in "The Daleks".
  • The creators of Lost have specifically shot down the fan theory that the survivors of Oceanic Flight 815 are actually all dead and in a kind of purgatory, despite the belief that this was the only explanation that actually made Season One make any kind of sense. Lingering hopes of this being true have been thoroughly Jossed as the fourth and sixth seasons actually does allow several of the main characters to escape the island and return to the real world. Although in either a Take That! or a Shout-Out, one of those returnees "now" holds the theory that he and the other "Oceanic 6" are in fact dead.
    • Richard hangs a Lampshade on this in "Ab Aeterno", declaring that he, at least, considers the island to be Hell.
    • As a lampshade hanging, in season 6, the ghost of Michael reveals to Hurley that the island actually does serve as an instance of purgatory for people who have committed atrocious acts while on the island. The series finale reveals that the Alternate Timeline Los Angeles where the plane didn't crash is really some kind of purgatory.
    • After years of some of the most elaborate fan theories to grace modern television, The Island is... just an island. For the most part, anyway.
  • Star Trek: The Original Series was the subject of a fan theory regarding uniform insignias, believing that since crew members of the USS Exeter got their own insignia in "The Omega Glory" and many Starfleet personnel wore insignia other than the Enterprise crew's chevron, this meant that each ship had its own badge. Star Trek: Enterprise even followed this, giving the USS Defiant crew a "sideways chevron" badge in "In a Mirror Darkly" (despite their having worn a chevron in "The Tholian Web"). The theory also resulted in minor complaints when the Kelvin Timeline films and Star Trek: Discovery all used the Enterprise chevron. Turns out, this all comes back to a production mistake: the different badges were supposed to represent branch insignia, but William Theiss erroneously gave the Exeter its own badge, incorrectly thinking that was what the different shapes meant.
  • Star Trek: Enterprise. Nearly every episode went against some bit of fanon, but careful examination reveals the writers never went against canon, with near Magnificent Bastard precision (with the exception of cloaking devices appearing much earlier than previously established). For example:
    • Several well-known alien species encountered in Enterprise had originally received first contact later in the chronology. The dialogue carefully avoided mentioning the species by name to keep canon intact.
    • When T'Pol becomes an officer in Starfleet towards the end of the series, many fans cried foul claiming the original Star Trek series established that Spock was the first Vulcan to serve in Starfleet... Until some enterprising (heh) fans took time to watch the entire run of the original series on DVD only to confirm no such reference was ever made on screen, and since Paramount and Gene Roddenberry proclaimed EU sources non-canon, any references to Spock being the first in the novels and other media don't count.
    • The portrayal of Vulcans in general was perhaps the single biggest source of outrage: some fans took it extremely poorly that Vulcans were portrayed as arrogant, duplicitous, and generally not all that noble, despite the fact that the Vulcans previously seen in the original series, except for Spock and Sarek, showed these same traits. And even Spock and Sarek demonstrated an irrational years-long grudge. In particular, the fans who objected to the portrayal of Vulcans in this series apparently never watched, or had forgotten about, the TOS episode "Amok Time", in which T'Pau (one of the most eminent Vulcans, though her exact position is never stated; she's said to have been the only person ever to decline a seat on the Federation Council) makes statements about Terrans that could very easily be construed to be racist, and T'Pring hatches a plot with her lover Stonn to get Spock killed by challenging the marriage. Not very nice people by any reasonable standard. Spock himself states on several occasions that one reason Vulcans place so much of a premium on logic and strict emotional control is that their emotions and passions are far stronger and harsher than humans, and it's canon that Vulcan civilization was very nearly destroyed centuries ago in wars that were worse than anything Earth ever experienced, even World War III itself. And the objectors are ignoring the example of the Romulans, who are basically the descendants of Vulcans who refused to accept Surak's philosophies and struck out to greener pastures offworld instead in order to preserve their original civilization, both the good and the bad.
    • One particular example works off both definitions: Trip's death in "These are the Voyages..." By that time there was already a novel written with Trip as an old man, meeting a young James Kirk, and mentoring the designer of the Constitution class starship. The event in question was also equally reviled by the fanbase, Trip being one of the most beloved characters in the series. While considered Non-Canon by all TPTB, the later ENT novels (The Good that Men Do through The Romulan War: To Brave the Storm) brought Trip back, turning his death into a Heroic Sacrifice, to work behind the scenes to sabotage the Romulan efforts to create a Warp 7 stardrive.
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation did this as well:
    • Between the end of the Original Series in 1969 and the airing of TNG in 1987, the only 'official' stories that came out were the four Star Trek movies. Because demand for Trek remained high, a good number of novels and RPG material were published, and assumed to be canon (or at least close to it,) by the fans. Apparently, Gene Roddenberry was frustrated that creative control had effectively been taken away from him (both in most of the films and the fiction,) and when he re-asserted creative control at the beginning of TNG, he deliberately ignored the corpus of work that had been done and took things in a different direction with TNG. The strange thing is that Roddenberry added The Animated Series to his non-canon list, even though he was involved in its production, it had all of the original cast except Chekov, shared story editors, screenwriters, and directors with the live-action series, and even has the same guest stars.
    • Some fans had a theory that the episode Yesterday's Enterprise actually took place in the Mirror Universe, where Mirror Universe Spock had received knowledge of the Federation from Prime universe Kirk, and had reformed the Terran Empire into the Federation, complete with Federation ideals and history, and that the resulting war with the Klingons was due to the softening of the former Empire, which they would eventually lose, leading to the events in the Mirror Universe on Deep Space Nine.
  • In Heroes, it was something of a no brainer (so to speak) that Sylar ate the brains of his victims. He makes frequent use of Evil Tastes Good dialogue, and Word of God itself stated that he was originally supposed to eat the brains, but they couldn't figure out a way to show it on-screen without being silly. And yet brain-eating is explicitly Jossed in a very funny scene in the first episode of Season 3.
    Claire: Are you going to eat it?
    Sylar: Eat your brain? Claire, that's disgusting!
  • This occasionally happens in Power Rangers. The problem is that much of the info comes from casting scripts or pre-season profiles; this info has been repeatedly wrong and/or changed when the show begins airing since 2002, but the fans keep using it as source material for fic. Such is the case of the majority of the older fanbase (those aware of the Sentai source shows) assuming that Tensou Sentai Goseiger would be skipped over to adapt Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger, only to be surprised with the announcement of Power Rangers Megaforce, which is a Goseiger adaptation. And then they really got hit in the face with the reveal that the second half of Megaforce would be a joint Goseiger and Gokaiger adaptation.
  • Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue has an interesting one. Fans theorized that Commander Mitchell was, in fact, a grown up Billy, who used his knowledge of Ranger Tech to create his own team. The fact that his name is William Mitchell and the actor had a passing resemblance to David Yost also played into this. The theory was Jossed by producers and then firmly killed when Billy's official last name was revealed to be Cranston.
  • Smallville:
    • The theory that Chloe might change her name to become "Lois Lane" later in life was pretty thoroughly Jossed when the actual Lois Lane showed up in season 4 (and several times afterwards by Word of God).
    • When Jor-El's voice began telling Clark that it was his destiny to rule the people of Earth with strength, fans believed either General Zod was Clark's biological father, or that Zod had somehow intercepted the ship and placed a message inside. This was jossed by the powers that be who assured fans that Jor-El was still Clark's father.
  • In the 2003 remake of Battlestar Galactica, one episode revealed that there was originally a number 7 Cylon named Daniel, but Cavil destroyed them all. The fanbase went wild with Epileptic Trees over this, saying that Daniel was Starbuck's father, Starbuck herself, any or all of the imaginary friends, the thirteenth lord of Kobol, etc. Then Word of God said that no, Daniel is not Starbuck's father, will not play any part in the finale, and was only created to explain why there was no number 7, while adding to Cavil's evil backstory to boot. Another one is what is going on with the apparently non-sensical numbering scheme for the models? There are supposed to be twelve all together, the unique five (who became known as the Final Five, despite existing before the seven) who came from the wreck of Earth and the seven they helped the machine Cylons create. Despite this, the models created with the machine Cylons are known to include Model One AND Model Nine.
  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer:
    • Directed by Joss Whedon, this is the fandom reaction to the season 5 revelation that Drusilla sired Spike. Until this point, it was assumed that Angelus siring Spike was canon (what with Spike outright referring to Angel as his sire at least twice); suddenly almost all existing Fanged Four and Angel/Spike fics were 'Jossed'. The explanation is that "sire" can refer to any vampiric ancestor, not just the direct one. Angel sired Drusilla, so is Spike's sire — and did indeed have a mentor relationship with him, which isn't always the case.
    • In season seven it looks like Faith slept with Spike. When Harmony introduces herself in the Season 9 comics however Faith offers these words:
    "I love that I'm supposed to be the slutty one when everyone but me has nailed Spike."
  • A popular fan theory about Firefly's Shepherd Book was that he had spent time as an Operative. This has been Jossed by the Shepherd's Tale comic, which reveals that he was at one point high-ranking Alliance commander, but was working as a spy for the Browncoats the whole time. Before that he was a streetkid named Henry Evans, who joined the Independent movement to get off his homeworld, stealing his identity from the real Book, whom he killed and impersonated to infiltrate the Alliance.
  • The Skins fan theory that Effy was going to be the character who died at the end of Series 4, her mental illness Driving Her To Suicide. Instead, it was Freddie, in a plot twist so ridiculous it could have come straight out of the Whedon playbook.
  • This occasionally happens with NCIS.
    • In early seasons, it was a widely accepted theory that Tony's father was an abusive alcoholic, based on Tony saying that his father "was too drunk to hurt anyone" while undercover in a Season 2 episode. This was jossed by the appearance of Tony Sr. in Season 7, in which he was shown to be neglectful but very clearly not abusive or in any way violent.
    • Quite a few fanfictions were jossed by the Season 10 episode "You Better Watch Out" when it was explicitly stated that Ziva had never been to Tony's apartment, nor any other woman for that matter. It is possible that this was intended to show the significance of her staying at his apartment two episodes later as a precaution after her father was assassinated.
    • The theory of McGee having a dead mother was well on its way to becoming accepted fanon in seasons nine and ten, mostly because that seemed to be the trend on the show — Tony, Ziva, Gibbs, and Abby have all lost their mothers. The idea was jossed in the latter half of Season 10 when it is mentioned in an episode that this character's mother is very much alive and well.
  • Supernatural. Throughout the entirety of Season 3, fans were convinced Sam and Dean would find a way to free Dean from his deal. They didn't.
    • There are several examples of this in Supernatural, most often accompanied by a fan cry of 'I can't believe they actually went there!'. See Sam sleeping with Ruby and drinking her blood (both heavily debated, but many fans were convinced he Would Never), Sam breaking the final seal and defeating Lucifer, Dean not saying 'yes' to Michael, Sam saying 'yes' to Lucifer, and the list goes on.
    • Throughout much of S5 many fans believed pagan gods might ally themselves with — or in some way offer assistance to — the Winchesters. This was Jossed not once, but twice, first with Paris Hilton's self-obsessed forest god, and then with the council of pagan gods who determined the best way to avert the apocalypse would be to kill the Winchesters. On the other hand, fans were vindicated in believing the Trickster/Gabriel would become an ally, they just never quite guessed how it would work out.
  • Life on Mars (2006): A very popular theory regarding the last episode, which was even embraced by John Simm himself, was that Sam never actually woke up from his coma, and his return to the "real world" was a hallucination, which is why he didn't feel anything there. This is however jossed by the first episode of Ashes to Ashes (2008) which reveals that he did indeed wake up and committed suicide a few days later. Strangely enough, Ashes to Ashes (2008) actually did this with Alex at the beginning of the third season, where her imagined awakening in the real world later turned out to actually be her dying.
  • Mad Men: Based on the title sequence, which shows Don Draper falling off a building, many fans thought that he would commit suicide at the end of the series. He doesn't, and is in fact very happy at the end.
  • Kamen Rider shows will occasionally go out of their way to shoot down fan theories about secondary characters (usually female ones) becoming Riders, either by taking up the title character's belt or gaining their own powers. A specific instance comes in Kamen Rider Drive, where the direct-to-DVD mini-episode Type Tokujou shows that Kiriko attempted to transform into Drive, only for the transformation to fail because she lacks some unspecified factor which Shinnosuke possesses.
  • The Walking Dead had a moment in season 7 where Daryl blinks a lot while looking at Rick. Earlier in the episode a poster with the morse alphabet was shown, so fans theorised that Daryl was blinking in morse code, even translating the long and short blinks to "I, E, A, S, T.". That would then probably mean that Daryl tried to communicate that he was being held captive somewhere to the east. However, Word of God Scott M. Gimple stated he wished the writers had been that clever and that the fans gave them too much credit.
  • Charmed (1998):
    • The internet loved the story that Holly Marie Combs's pregnancy in Season 6 forced the writers to change the planned story arc involving Chris being the Kid from the Future (from Phoebe's son to Piper's). Show runner Brad Kern however stated that Chris was always going to be Piper's son, and called Holly's pregnancy "convenient timing". Chris was introduced as a whitelighter - making it very strange that he could have been conceived as Phoebe's future son (Piper being the only Halliwell married to a whitelighter).
    • It was reported that Rose McGowan did the show just for a paycheck and hated her time on there. In her autobiography, she clarified that she was in a bad place from her rape at the hands of Harvey Weinstein and while she did take the role because she needed to work (after he'd blacklisted her) - any comments she made to the press were brought on by long shooting hours she wasn't used to (having never done network TV before) and the trauma of being a sexual assault survivor. She also took the time to say she took her role completely seriously and, although it came at the darkest period of her life, she was grateful for the experience.
    • Charisma Carpenter did not audition for the role of Paige before Rose was cast, as was rumored. Holly Marie Combs stated that Rose didn't even audition and was offered the role over the phone - meaning that no other actresses were auditioned (although others were considered to become The Other Darrin after Shannen Doherty was fired).
    • Holly Marie Combs was also not forced to stay on the show by contract after Shannen Doherty's firing (the rumor was that she wanted to leave the show as well because they were good friends). She did consider leaving, but stayed on when she was granted a nice pay rise and given the And Starring in the opening credits (as Alyssa Milano was now credited first).
    • Kaley Cuoco was not brought in as Billie to helm a potential spin-off. While Brad Kern admits that the idea of a spin-off was talked about casually, nothing was ever properly planned. The introduction of Billie was for two reasons: a) the three lead actresses were getting exhausted by the long shooting hours, so a new character could take over a lot of the action scenes and give the actresses a break, and b) Alyssa Milano refused to be the Ms. Fanservice to the extent she had in the previous three seasons (the other two protested against the skimpy clothes as well, but Alyssa had endured the worst of it) and so a Younger and Hipper character could provide the Fanservice while the Halliwells' clothing became more modest.
  • Many fans believed the mysterious protagonist of The Mandalorian was none other than Boba Fett, despite the Fetts technically not being Mandalorian under Disney’s continuity. As if it wasn’t obvious over the course of the entire first season, this is not the case as episode eight revealed that Mando’s real name is Din Djarin and that he was rescued from a separatist invasion of his home world by Death Watch as a child who introduced him into the Mandalorian culture.

  • John Lennon repeatedly denied that "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" had anything to do with LSD, despite him having LSD experiences and writing "She Said She Said" beforehand about a bad trip. According to Lennon, he was not aware of the LSD abbreviation at the time, had only heard the substance referred to as "acid," and was inspired by a painting that his son Julian made in school of his classmate Lucy O'Donnell. His son and Lucy also confirmed this answer. However, the explanation didn't deter his fans, and Paul McCartney has refuted John's statements.
  • Another drug related one: Peter Yarrow denied that his song "Puff the Magic Dragon" was about smoking marijuana, and that it "never had any meaning other than the obvious one": the "loss of innocence in children."
  • Continuing on with the drug theme, many people believe Pink Floyd's "Comfortably Numb" is about heroin use. In reality, it's about Roger Waters experiencing different illnesses and the feelings that come along with them. The second verse in particular is about when he had become sick with stomach cramps prior to performing (it later turned out to be hepatitis); a doctor gave him a shot of something, which made him numb. When asked about the line "That'll keep you going through the show" in particular, he said "That comes from a specific show at the Spectrum in Philadelphia (June 29, 1977). I had stomach cramps so bad that I thought I wasn't able to go on. A doctor backstage gave me a shot of something that I swear to God would have killed a fucking elephant. I did the whole show hardly able to raise my hand above my knee. He said it was a muscular relaxant. But it rendered me almost insensible. It was so bad that at the end of the show, the audience was baying for more. I couldn't do it. They did the encore without me."

    Professional Wrestling 
  • In short, the world of wrestling is full of rumors and speculation - no thanks to dirt sheets who many noted industry people have said just make things up based off guesswork. It hasn't stopped a few Urban Legends being taken as fact. Some doozies:
    • Jillian Hall developed a Hollywood Tone-Deaf gimmick in 2007 that coincided with Brooke Hogan releasing an album - so of course people reported that the gimmick was created to mock Brooke. Jillian has said repeatedly that the gimmick was her idea, and it was something she did spontaneously at a live event when she was annoyed at having to do another bikini contest. Others have also said she frequently burst into song backstage, making the gimmick an extension of her real personality.
    • As soon as Molly Holly asked for her release from WWE, dirtsheets reported that she was unhappy at playing a heel and the Hotter and Sexier direction the company had gone in - and therefore the office didn't think she could be an effective face without "playing the T&A card". Only half true - as Molly said in her shoot interview. She hated being a heel - because she just preferred playing a face, and the tendency of fans and commentators to mock her for her weight. Even so, she only left after a cancer scare put things in perspective for her. In the same shoot interview, she said she saw T&A as a part of show business and thought that the Diva Search could potentially find a new star that would make WWE a lot of money.
    • Chyna's last match with WWE was supposed to end with her dropping the Women's title to Lita, and she refused. Lita put those rumors to rest, saying that Chyna was always supposed to retain in their match (the fact that it was at the start of the feud and Chyna showing signs of a potential Face–Heel Turn backs her up) - and their feud was meant to go on longer.
    • Trish Stratus was not in fact supposed to face Asuka at an NXT Takeover in Toronto. She said she was already well into her pregnancy at that point, which WWE knew about and as a result she was never asked. Mickie James was always going to be the planned opponent - to foreshadow her return on the main roster.
    • Krissy Vaine asked for her release after only two weeks on the main roster. Reports circulated that she heard she and her boyfriend were getting put on different shows (as he had asked for his own release at the same time). Krissy had to do an interview with Diva Dirt about how she had been battling depression in developmental and was convinced her condition would get worse on the main roster - especially after a traumatic backstage experience during her Smackdown debut.
    • Daniel Bryan was released in 2010 after a segment where he choked Justin Roberts with his own tie and only rehired due to fans chanting for him in the arenas. Justin Roberts himself stated in his autobiography that Vince McMahon loved the segment and only released Bryan to appease the sponsors who were complaining - fully intending to bring him back once the heat had died down.
    • The Bella Twins were legitimately offended by AJ Lee's 'Pipe Bombshell' promo and there was real life heat between them. This is conflating two different events. Natalya was apparently the one legitimately offended by the promo, while Nikki Bella's dislike was over the feud Brie had with AJ - and her dislike was over how little mic time Brie got compared to AJ.
    • Stacy Carter aka 'The Kat' was released abruptly while in the middle of a red-hot storyline with Right to Censor. The only reason given was "attitude problems". In a shoot interview she says it was because she had been asked to pose for Playboy, which led to Chyna's second Playboy shoot being pushed back. Chyna apparently disapproved and pulled some strings to get her fired - though Stacy admits this is just a theory of hers.
      • Bruce Prichard has confirmed the "she was fired for having an attitude problem" story, and went into great detail over the meeting Vince and Jerry Lawler had after Lawler found out.

  • George Bernard Shaw was so sick of all the people who felt Eliza Doolittle and Professor Henry Higgins from Pygmalion should've ended up together, that he wrote an entire essay on why Eliza and Henry could never be together; and in the original play she marries Freddy Eynsford-Hill. Nevertheless, in its film adaptation, and in the musical My Fair Lady, (both the stage version and the film), ended with Eliza and Henry possibly together.

    Video Games 
  • The first Kingdom Hearts game probably inspired many theories about Ansem that were invalidated by Kingdom Hearts II. Theories about "Unknown" from Final Mix and the knights from the second game's secret ending were also invalidated.
    • There was also quite a bit of speculation about Roxas, known only as the "Blond-Haired Kid", or BHK, after a few previews of Kingdom Hearts II were released. Many theories were in the correct vein, but as Roxas is linked to a group of people who were never mentioned at all in the first game, it was virtually impossible for anyone to guess his true identity. It got easier to pin "BHK" post-Chain of Memories. But then there was DiZ. The common theory was that he was the "Superior" of the Organization and Ansem's Nobody — because Chain of Memories heavily implied that Ansem's Nobody led the Organization and DiZ himself was Ansem (as King Mickey recognized him). The actual truth of the matter was something no-one could have predicted — that the Ansem you fought in the first game wasn't the real Ansem King Mickey met.
    • The fourth installment in the series, 358/2 Days, tossed a mysterious new Kairi lookalike into the events concurrent to Chain of Memories and preceding Kingdom Hearts II. There were many theories that attempted to explain who she was and why she was never mentioned before, a fairly common one being she was Kairi's Unversed (Before the fandom really knew what an Unversed was) It turned out that she was in fact a Replica infused with Sora's memories.
    • A fairly minor one, it was the general fandom consensus that all Nobodies looked different, such as having a different hair color, and had a different voice than their "Other", like Roxas, Namine and Xemnas did. Then Birth by Sleep rolled around and we see the "Others" of Xigbar, Xaldin, Vexen, Lexeaus, Zexion, Saix, and Axel, and, while the latter three were kids at the time, they all looked and sounded exactly like their Nobodies. It should be pointed out that Roxas, Namine and Xemnas aren't "typical" Nobodies.
  • Devil May Cry:
    • 4 inspired a lot of fan-thought that Nero was Sparda or Vergil reincarnate, or that his Devil Bringer arm held either spirit, and would be possessed by them. Unfortunately, neither showed up in the game. Also, Dante's seemingly uncharacteristic assassination of Order leader Sanctus at the game's start inspired much speculation about his motives and whether he had pulled a Face–Heel Turn. It was eventually revealed that he was pulling a Shoot the Dog and trying to kill the game's Big Bad.
    • As a point of interest: while not confirmed, Nero's link to Vergil is still hinted at quite a lot in the game. He wields the Yamato katana — Vergil's weapon in Devil May Cry 3 — and in Devil Trigger form, he is overshadowed by a demonic spirit that resembles Vergil's own Devil Trigger and his Nelo Angelo form from the first game. Demonic Possession/Soul Jar isn't off the table just yet.
    • The Crystal Dragon Pope explicitly stated that Nero carries the blood of Sparda.
    • There is an interview where a member of the staff said that Nero is actually the son of Vergil.
    • Morihashi Bingo, the scenario designer for Devil May Cry 3 and 4, wrote a novelization of Devil May Cry 4 that states that the connection between Nero and Vergil is that Nero is the son of Vergil and a human prostitute. Bingo added a number of scenes into the novel that clarified the relationship, claiming that the scenes were intended to be in the game but were cut from the final version for various reasons. The problem? Well, before Bingo wrote the novel he actually left Capcom to be a freelance writer. This means that despite the book being the originally intended story for the game, it hasn't been in any published material written by Capcom. Since it hasn't been confirmed or denied, Capcom could easily change their mind and have the plot go in a different direction.
    • All of this was later very explicitly stated in-canon in Devil May Cry 5 which means the original idea of being a reincarnation/possession victim is indeed Jossed, the basic idea of a connection between Nero and Virgil is confirmed.
  • In Dark Souls the identity of Lord Gwyn's firstborn son is kept ambiguous, with only a few vague hints given that he even exists. However, certain high-profile members of the Dark Souls fanbase like EpicNameBro had suggested (based on some very valid in-game clues) that it was Solaire, a theory which had become so popular among the Dark Souls community that many fans accepted it as canonical up until the release of Dark Souls III, which introduced the Nameless King who was all but stated to truly be Gwyn's firstborn.
  • Halo:
    • Prior to Halo 3, fans began concocting elaborate theories regarding the Forerunners' relationship to humanity and the Flood, Cortana's "ulterior motives" and what the Prophet of Truth's motivations were for wiping out the Elites. Turns out, the Forerunner simply encountered and fought the Flood, humans were merely the most favored out of countless species the Forerunner preserved in the Ark, Cortana was always on the good guys' side, and Truth, though he's revealed in the novels be at least somewhat aware that the Covenant's religion is a lie, was simply a self-aggrandizing zealot who felt the Elites were too unreliable to be kept alive.
    • Then The Forerunner Saga and Halo 4 revealed all that to be only part of the story, with humanity, the Prophets, the Flood, and the Forerunners having a history going back hundreds of thousands of years. A race literally called the Precursors created both humans and Forerunners; after they decided to favor the former and wipe out the latter, the Forerunners drove the Precursors out of the galaxy instead. In a plot for revenge against all of their creations, the surviving Precursors turned themselves into the Flood, laying dormant until they were discovered by a joint Human-Prophet alliance. However, during the war between the two sides, humanity also wiped out several Forerunner worlds to sterilize any Flood they found there, then took the planets for their own to replace the worlds they lost. The Forerunners struck back by wiping out almost every human and Prophet, stranding the survivors on their homeworlds, and forcibly devolving humanity back to the Stone Age. Only then did the Flood, which had pretended to retreat from the Human-Prophet alliance, come back to nearly destroy all life in the galaxy. Additionally, it's revealed it was only the influential Forerunner Librarian and her followers who favored humanity, with the rest of her species viewing us as little better than animals. This all sounds like an Ass Pull, but it isn't. All the way back before the first Halo came out, supplementary materials on said that humanity found human populations on worlds that humanity had never, ever, ever been to. Though that tidbit seems to have been retconned away, the later Halo Legends and Halo: Evolutions also foreshadowed later developments by mentioning that mysterious human-style architecture had been found on uninhabited worlds.
    •'s fanfiction section stretches all the way back to 1999, two years before the release of Halo: Combat Evolved, providing even earlier examples of fan speculation. Common elements include explicit connections to Bungie's earlier series Marathon (including its model of AI lifespan and rampancy) that differ in nature to later proposed links, Cortana not even being a UNSC AI (a few old fics made her outright antagonistic towards them, and many had her playing them for chumps in pursuit of her goals), and assumptions that Master Chief (when he begins showing up in the fan works) was a battleroid like the Security Officer, if not the man himself in a different set of armour.
  • After countless Chrono Trigger fanfics about the mystery behind Schala, Chrono Cross comes along with a conclusive answer, making many of them obsolete. Then the DS remake of Trigger Jossed even more fan theories with its added exclusive ending.
  • After years of speculation surrounding the Mega Man (Classic) series (namely, that Zero went berserk and killed the original cast), Keiji Inafune casually dismissed the theory in a question and answer session, offhandedly stating that "it was not in Zero's character." Jossed. note 
  • A popular fan theory in the Mega Man Zero series was that the Dark Elf/Mother Elf was an incarnation of Iris, Zero's infamous Gwen Stacy from X4, based on Zero's comment at the end of Zero 2 that he felt he might know her and the Mother Elf's mercy act of transforming a dying Elpizo into a Cyber Elf, suggesting she may have formerly been a Reploid. This was eventually dispelled in Rockman Zero Official Complete Works, which states that the Mother Elf was created from Maverick Virus data in Zero's body as a Sigma Antibody Program, thus explaining Zero's sense of familiarity with her.
  • Final Fantasy in general has been Jossing a lot of fan theories and fanfics since Square Enix finally started making sequels and spin-offs set in the worlds of the individual games:
    • The ambiguous ending to Final Fantasy VII, set 500 years into the future, deliberately refused to answer whether or not humanity had survived the clash between Meteor, Holy, and the Lifestream. Then along came the Compilation (some say Complication) of Final Fantasy VII, which continued the story only a few years after said event.
    • Crisis Core Jossed everyone's fanfictions. Especially Zack/Cloud ones. Since it turns out Cloud was not as emo as they wanted to believe. And Zack didn't meet him by saving him from bullies either... Angeal also served as a tool for Jossing too since... well... he was never even referred to until he showed up in CC thus everyone had to assume Zack randomly got the Buster Sword which... isn't true.
    • The FFVII Ultimania Guides: where fanon goes to die.
    • There are also the sequels to Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy IV. On an equally annoying level, there are also the Japanese-only Ultimania information books, which often contain details, histories, and character backstories that aren't even remotely hinted at in the games, some of which would look like outrageous Epileptic Trees if they had been fan theories.
    • One cannot bring up Final Fantasy VIII without mention of the legendary "Rinoa = Ultimecia" theory. Even after the Ultimania guide explicitly noted that Rinoa did not somehow become the game's Big Bad in the Bad Future (which admittedly doesn't rule out the possibility that Ultimecia's Sorceress Power descended from Rinoa over the years), you'll find many a fan still clinging to this theory with an iron grip.
    • The ending of Final Fantasy Tactics Advance has the kids return home and "wake up" from the dream world. Many fans speculated that Marche killed everyone when he destroyed the last bind that held the world together. Word of God stated that no one died since none of the characters in the fantasy world was real (the magic book that sucked in the kids made the people seem real), but people to this day still insist that Marche committed genocide.
    • In Final Fantasy X-2 has a kid named Shinra, who at one point, talks about moving to a planet and harvesting its abundance of life energy to power machines and cities. While it's an obvious reference to Final Fantasy VII, fans latched onto the theory that Shinra enacted his plan and created the Mega-Corp under his name. The developers disproved the theory by saying that having both games linked was just something they joked about for fun and never really put any thought into it.
  • Pre-release materials for Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts & Bolts revealed the Lord of Games (L.O.G) and his role in the story, where he settles Grunty and Banjo's conflict with a contest. Some people didn't simply see L.O.G as a facilitator, and begin to speculate that Grunty might be a Disc-One Final Boss, with L.O.G being the True Final Boss plotting an Evil Plan against Banjo. Later, Rare opened Facebook accounts for some of the game's characters for fans to post some questions to their walls for a limited time, with L.O.G himself among them. This gave the Banjo theorists the chance to direct their accusations to L.O.G before the game is released. His response?
    "What's all this talk of evil? I may be occasionally fallible and self-indulgent — or so I'm told — but I certainly wouldn't describe myself as evil."
  • Despite heavy hints to the positive, the theory of the Wrecked Ship in Super Metroid and the Pirate Mothership in Metroid: Zero Mission being the same was Jossed by Zero Mission's director not long after people started espousing it.
  • Any update Kevan applies to Urban Dead tends to fly in the face of every one of the regulars' beliefs about the game.
  • Nintendo seems to take an almost vindictive glee in contradicting the Fanon that was established for the Super Mario Bros. series during those long years when the plots of the games were strictly Save the Princess affairs.
    • The very first Mario game with an actual plot (Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island) creates an origin story for the Mario Bros. that places their birth in the Mushroom Kingdom — retconning Donkey Kong, Mario Bros., and Super Mario Bros., which collectively state they were born in Brooklyn and got to the Mushroom Kingdom through a warp pipe. It also makes them twins, even though Mario was usually held as being the older brother by years rather than by minutes.
    • Shigeru Miyamoto himself said that Mario's full name is not "Mario Mario"... but he later revealed that this is the case.
    • In an interview, Miyamoto disproved the common theory that the Koopalings are Bowser's kids (the current story is that the Koopalings are not Bowser's children, and Bowser has only one child, Bowser Jr.) This is despite them originally being Bowser's children in Super Mario Bros. 3 (the Japanese manual has Bowser referring to them as "Ore-sama no musuko-tachi", meaning "my children", and Larry calls Bowser "Oyaji", a word for "father"). But after this, their family relationship with Bowser didn't get mentioned in later games, and they got referred to as his "minions" or "underlings" instead (and this included the manual for Super Mario Advance 4, a GBA remake of Super Mario Bros. 3) — in Japan. It lived on much longer in English-speaking countries as Word of Dante through the English translations, which were more likely to refer to them as "Bowser's children."
    • Despite the cartridge cover of Super Mario Bros. implying that Mario was about to fall into a pit due to clashing against a wall, Miyamoto Jossed that outcome in a September 2015 video. In an inversion, he did confirm other beliefs and theories in that video.
    • In the The Super Mario Bros. Super Show, Toad is sometimes seen with his mushroom cap off as if it were an actual hat and is shown to only have a few strands of hair. It wasn't until years later that Nintendo stated that the mushroom cap on all Toads are a part of their heads are are not hats.
  • Many fans of Half-Life believed that the G-Man was in fact Black Mesa's administrator, which was a reasonable assumption in the interim before the sequel, but was Jossed when the Administrator, now named Wallace Breen, appeared as the principle antagonist of Half-Life 2. The G-Man turned out to have an entirely separate backstory. The first game's official audio script does call him "Administrator," though, so the fans' interpretation was likely the original plan.
  • Portal fans accepted Portal: Prelude, a third-party mod revolving around Aperture's backstory, as canon, until Valve laughed at their faces by proposing their own entirely new canon (which happened to also contradict their own previously made canon, but that is an entirely different story).
  • The King of Fighters 2000. With that tragic ending where Heidern laments a city being wiped off the map. Wait a minute... Southtown has been destroyed! What an incredibly bold move by SNK! The city that all but defined this tournament, gone, just like that! Wait a minute, are you sure it was Southtown? It had to be Southtown! Yes, it was Southtown! But they'd never... could they... yes! No! It's definitely Southtown, yes, 100% sure, no other possibility! Well, you can imagine the crushing disappointment when later games make it plainly obvious that Southtown wasn't destroyed. Even worse, we never find out which city it supposedly was and the incident is never mentioned again. Of course, you could've predicted this if you remembered that the freaking EDIT TEAM ending has never been canon in any KOF, ever.
  • Resident Evil 3: Nemesis would count. After several novels from S.D. Perry, Nemesis seemed planned to contradict what she wrote as much as possible, including elements such as the games' timeline, the fate of Raccoon City, the canon endings of each game, and the name of several offscreen personages such as the city's mayor. Indeed, her edition of the story comes with an author's note stating the continuity errors between book and game. As it is, Nemesis is rather faithful to the source material.
  • Sherry Birkin's reappearance in Resident Evil 6 Jossed quite a few fan theories and planned stories about what was likely to have happened to her, since earlier sources indicated she was at least somewhat likely to end up in Wesker's care.
  • The Wild Card ending of Fallout: New Vegas brought about many theories of the Yes Man A.I. turning against the player due to a mention of finding an upgrade that lets him be more "Assertive". However, when asked about this lead developer J.E. Sawyer stated that the upgrade was meant to ensure that Yes Man is capable of formulating his own decisions while also only following the Courier's orders, preventing someone else from hijacking the Courier's seat of power. The fan theories of New Vegas in general are particularly prone to being Jossed, since Sawyer keeps an active Formspring account and readily answers most questions.
  • The Legend of Zelda:
    • Hyrule Historia, a book released in 2011 as part of the 25th anniversary of the series, debunked all timeline theories that placed the earlier 2D games (from the original The Legend of Zelda to Link's Awakening, plus the Oracle duology) either in the Adult Timeline or the Child Timeline of the series' overall chronology, instead placing them in a third timeline that, like the other two, has its roots in the ending of Ocarina of Time. In a reverse case, the book also confirmed lots of other theories, as well as previously ambiguous or unconfirmed stuff.
    • In A Link to the Past the last thing Link's Uncle says before he dies is "Zelda is your...". Many fans at the time speculated that he meant to say "Zelda is your sister" and that Link was secretly part of the royal family. As the series went on however it became increasingly clear that this wasn't the case. In the Game Boy Advance re-release of the game Link's Uncle's last words were changed to "Zelda is your destiny" to avoid any remaining confusion.
    • Tingle, a Manchild who is obsessed with fairies and maps, is a very odd character. Many fans assumed Tingle was gay due to his fairy obsession and his big interest towards Link, who has clothes that remind Tingle of faeries (and he goes nutters in The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask when he sees Link has an actual fairy by his side). Zelda producer Eiji Aonuma went on the record to debunk the theories and outright said that Tingle is "not gay, just really weird".
    • A common theory regarding Majora's Mask is that it takes place inside a dream Link is having (there are also varations of the theory suggesting it's a Dying Dream). But Eiji Aonuma jossed it when he was asked about why the Ballad of the Wind Fish was in the game (its first appearance is in Link's Awakening, which does take place inside a dream).
  • Mass Effect 3:
    • The original endings created a well known fandom theory that Shepard was indoctrinated by the Reapers due to the Catalyst being the exact image of a boy who died at the beginning of the game. Once the Extended Cut DLC was released, however, it was clear that Shepard has their entire mind under control with a new option to refuse all of the choices the Catalyst has offered.
    • And again with the details on the Control ending specifying that the Illusive Man could never have controlled the Reapers due to being indoctrinated, yet Shepard is free and thus able to sacrifice their mortal existence to become the new, more benevolent Reaper overmind.
    • IGN's documentary app, The Final Hours of Mass Effect 3, further debunked the theory, as it contained interviews with BioWare developers, which revealed while they had considered a sequence in the endings wherein Shepard was indoctrinated, "the gameplay mechanic proved too troublesome to implement alongside dialogue choices", so the idea ended up getting completely exorcised from the final version of the script.
  • Pokémon:
    • From the ambiguous ending of the Celebi event in Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver, it was widely believed that after the player defeats Giovanni in a battle, he walks out of the cave and kills himself by jumping off the cliff it's perched on. His appearance at the tournament in Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 confirmed this to not be the case.
    • Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 did a particularly meta one by disproving the idea that a third version of the new games in a generation was inevitable, by being direct sequels instead.
    • Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 also disproved the theory that the Striaton City Gym Leaders and the Shadow Triad are the same people.
    • It had been widely believed that Dittos were the result of a failed attempt at cloning Mew given that they appeared frequently in the Mysterious Dungeon/ Cerulean Cave, their colors (both normal and shiny) were the same, and that they were both the only Pokemon to know Transform legitimately. However, an interview with Gamefreak proved this to be false and Dittos were just transforming blobs.
    • Many fans had believed for years that Machoke and Machamp were wearing some form of tights, which would fit their wrestler motif. Game Freak denounced the theory and said that the "tights" are actually a part of the Pokemon's skin (probably to avoid the implication that Pokemon are sentient enough to cover themselves up or that they would have naughty bits hidden).
  • There is a Mysterious Stranger John can meet in Red Dead Redemption that knows a lot about him, including up to one of the encounters taking place in the soon to be site of John's grave. He also knows about John's days in a gang and remembers people John doesn't. He's otherworldly and at the end of the third and final encounter, John will shoot him and he shrugs it off. The main theories were that he was: God,The Devil, the ghost of John's father, the incarnation of death, or a figment of John's imagination. Only the final theory gets jossed in Red Dead Redemption 2 as you can meet a stranger who's met him who believes he's the grim reaper who put a curse on the nearby town. You can also find a shopkeeper in said town who's implied to have made a Deal with the Devil to survive the cholera outbreak plaguing the town. You can also find a shack in the swamp that seems to be the man's where there are cryptic writings on the wall about the protagonist of II, Arthur. The rest of the theories still stand.
  • Team Fortress 2:
  • Touhou Project
    • Attempts to joss any fan interpretations or theories tend not to work so well, not because the jossing is ignored, but because the fans are far too versatile to be encumbered by it. Double Spoiler, which is the most cited attempt at unintentional jossing of a wide variety of things, caused an increase in Alternative Character Interpretations. Very early into the series, the fandom realized the importance of maintaining creator canon.
    • Touhou Chireikiden ~ Foul Detective Satori is notable for jossing over a decade's worth of fanon about Flandre Scarlet, the fandom's most notorious Memetic Psychopath. It turns out that she's actually much more sane than fans have assumed, and despite being initially presented as a Madwoman in the Attic, she doesn't really mind staying in the basement of Scarlet Mansion since she prefers to stay out of the sunlight.
  • It has been theorised in the Fire Emblem Awakening fandom that Lon'qu, the swordsman who Cannot Talk to Women, would extend his awkwardness around them to his own prospect daughters from the future, should he marry a first generation character who gives birth to a girl. The Future Past DLC josses this: if he marries Tharja and then he goes to rescue the alternate universe!Noire, AU!Noire bluntly brings up his aversion to women, and Lon'qu's reply is basically "WTF?! Why would I be scared of my own daughter?".
  • Before the release and fan-translation of Mother 3, many fans wrote Earthbound fanfiction about how Ness's continuing conflict with Pokey would play out. Needless to say, Ness canonically never even sees Pokey again. It's someone from another era altogether who does him in once and for all.
  • For a long time, people held on to a theory that id Software gave the source code for the Super Nintendo version of Wolfenstein 3D to Christian game developer Wisdom Tree as a retaliation against Nintendo's heavy censorship of the game (removing the swastikas, etc.). John Carmack, in an interview that was later quoted in the book Masters Of Doom, debunked this rumor. Id gave the source code to Wisdom Tree because, well, they were being paid a good sum of money for it.
  • There have been a lot of Jossed theories regarding The Walking Dead, but the most notable one would come from the second season. Everyone expected there to be a choice where you would have to pick between Luke and Kenny, where one of them would live and the other one would die. Then Tell Tale threw everyone a curveball by killing Luke halfway through Episode 5 and making the players pick between Kenny and Jane.
  • The Dead Island series hints that the survivors are not immune to the virus, merely resistant. Six months later Escape Dead Island has Xian show up, not as calm as portrayed but otherwise normal, dispelling that idea. The first two games also suggests there is not a cure, however when Cliff is succumbing to the virus Xian pushes him to take the antidote.
  • It was rumored that Rashid's missing female friend from Street Fighter V was Crimson Viper, but later it turned out she was a nameless Shadaloo scientist known as "the Usher" who was horribly murdered by F.A.N.G.. Viper herself is friends with Rashid and she appears in his story mode (as well as Bison's, Juri's and Urien's), she's just not the one he's searching for and she manages to escape from Bison, Juri and Urien on her own.
  • Subverted in Fire Emblem Heroes: the popular "the 'Mysterious Man' is Zacharias aka Alfonse and Sharena's missing friend" theory was apparently shot down when with the revelation that the 'Mysterious Man' is actually Prince Bruno of Emblia aka Veronica's older brother... but then, said theory was confirmed when "Zacharias" was revealed to be Prince Bruno/Mysterious Man past alias when he was banished to Emblia. So thea speculation that was apparently disproved turned out to be true after all.
  • The main characters in Star Fox have metallic legs, which lead to a popular theory that the Star Fox team had their legs removed in order to prevent blood circulating to the feet and cause the pilots to pass out when flying in the Arwing. Aside from this not working in the same way in real life, an interview with Miyamoto revealed that the metallic legs were a stylistic choice to make the animals look more human and they only made up the G-Diffusor explanation later to cover it up. In short, the Star Fox team have actual legs.
  • Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order: In the lead-up to the game's release, one popular theory was that the identity of the Second Sister is Barriss Offee, a Jedi who turned to the Dark Side in Star Wars: The Clone Wars and was later arrested. Their description in pre-release info such as being highly intelligent and that nothing has been heard about them afterwards meant that they could make a possible return. Despite the developers and Lucasfilm Story Group member Matt Martin debunking the theory pre-release, some people thought that they were lying to cover the reveal. Come the release however, it turns out Word of God was telling the truth when the Second Sister's identity was revealed to be a new character named Trilla Suduki.
  • Terraria: The Crimson was speculated to be the remains of Cthulhu trying to regrow, spreading his cells across the land and poisoning it in the process, which explains its eldritch nature and two of the boss fights being Cthulhu's body parts (and eye and his brain, the latter of which appears after smashing enough hearts in the Crimson). The anniversary lore had revealed that the Crimson is instead its own entity, not Cthulhu's remains, although Cthulhu being fought in the past and spending the game recovering from being Not Quite Dead was confirmed.

    Visual Novels 
  • Any popular fan theory on Umineko: When They Cry usually gets Jossed the very next episode, or is confirmed the next episode. The reason for this is that Ryukishi07 often looked at online forums to find out the current popular theories, just to have them either confirmed, played with or flat out crushed in the next episode. The manga also confirms or denies things that were left ambiguous in the visual novels; for example, the Rosatrice theory (a theory about Rosa Ushiromiya being the true Big Bad and the one behind Beatrice), which was growing in popularity with the English-speaking fandom, was jossed entirely by the EP8 manga, which confirmed beyond a doubt that Beatrice, Shannon and Kanon are all the same person, Sayo Yasuda.
  • During the period of time between when the demo of Hatoful Boyfriend had been translated and when the full game was released in English, many English-speaking fans theorized that Nageki was actually a human, but his ghost had taken the form of a mourning dove for totemic-type reasons, hence his confusion over what and who he is, and why Hiyoko is surprised to see a mourning dove in Japan. He also talks about being bullied, and at one point tells Hiyoko that if she wants to kill herself, jumping out of the library window is a good way to go, implying he committed suicide because of bullying by jumping out of the window. In the full version, it's confirmed that he really was a bird, and although he did kill himself, his method and reason for doing so were explored in detail and were nothing like anything that anyone had guessed; to be specific, it was a Heroic Sacrifice, and he set himself on fire.
  • Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors ends with a shot of the characters driving through the Nevada Desert when they notice a woman who seems to bare a resemblance to "All-Ice", shortened to "Alice" by some, the apparent Egyptian mummy who according to legend has Ice-9 in instead of water in her body, hitch-hiking. Junpei notes that he 'recognizes' the woman, then the game abruptly ends. Earlier in the game, the characters had already found a coffin where "All-Ice" was supposed to have been hidden, only to find it empty, concluding the entire thing to be a myth, so this ending just opened more questions. This led to loads of confused players, but also a pile of theories. Especially when the sequel, Virtue's Last Reward, seemed to have a character called "Alice" who resembles All-Ice in looks. The most consistent theory was that "All-Ice" had somehow gotten out of her coffin and unfrozen. Then the sequel actually came out, and the entire thing turned out to just be a coincidence: A government agent called Alice, who happened to resemble All-Ice in many ways, just happened to have been tracking terrorists to somewhere in the Nevada desert, and happened upon the characters as they drove. Just to add insult to injury, the game doesn't just joss it with new facts; it straight out kills the the theory with Alice herself calling anyone who believes in the fact she actually had Ice-9 in her body and is an ancient mummy a complete idiot.

    Web Animation 
  • In RWBY, there was a fan theory that Qrow was Ruby's real father. The only real "evidence" of this was that Ruby doesn't look much look her sister Yang or their father Tai, while modeling a lot of her appearance and battle style around Qrow. Monty Oum explained even before the theory began that the two were half-sisters with different mothers, with Yang being Qrow's blood-related niece. However, people continued to hold on to this idea until the other showrunners, Kerry and Miles, came out and directly said that he wasn't.

    Web Comics 
  • In Abstract Gender, many fan theories to the big conspiracy involved William Montgomery being somehow linked to the scientists. This was completely thrown out during the seventh and final chapter "Gods" where he gets transformed too, complete with a mind wipe and new personality as well.
  • In the Gunnerkrigg Court fandom, the two most popular theories about the identity of the third girl from the photo (that she's a relative of Gamma's, and that she's a young Jones) were immediately Jossed by the author on the forum. Since most of the fans don't hang out on the forum, these theories remained popular, until The Rant below this page put them to rest in the bluntest way possible. Also parodied in the rant on this page. The first three theories that Tom facetiously shot down were Shout Outs to to actual Epileptic Trees from the fandom. He has taken this to a whole new level by having Renard Joss a theory that Jones was a robot in comic on this page. When the theory refused to die, Jones herself stated she was not a Robot on this page. The rant on that last one also includes a shirt design Jossing the theory yet again.
  • The Order of the Stick:
    • Rich Burlew, the author, tends to do this with many fan theories, such as Miko being zombified by Xykon, the results of a misfired poison arrow, and whether Belkar's prophecy had come true. From the FAQ:
      In fact, I try not to read anything where people suggest upcoming plot ideas because I hate it when people guess what is going to happen. I feel the uncontrollable urge to change what happens, just to prove them wrong. Petty? Probably.
    • The popular fan theory that the world of The Order of the Stick was an actual campaign was Jossed in strip # 606.
      Shojo: No, the wisdom is simply this: Play the game.
      Belkar: Uh, OK, but I thought we weren't actually representing a game campaign, we were just living in a world where the laws of...
      Shojo: [while he and Belkar are playing Dungeons & Dragons] Not this game!
      Belkar: Oh, whew!
    • A Double Subversion of Jossing occurred with the theory that Elan's father is Lord Tyrinar, the warlord who had Haley's father imprisoned. The first strips where Tarquin appeared had him as a general who'd lost his empire long before; but it was eventually revealed that he was the man behind the throne of an empire that had gone through several figurehead rulers and names — including Tyrinaria — and Ian Starshine was one of the prisoners Roy befriended in the Empire's prisons. Tyrinar turned out to be just one of the figureheads, and dead in the present time of the comic.
  • The author of Keychain of Creation has a neat way about handling this. He insists, constantly, that every single epileptic tree is completely true, as sincerely as possible — no matter what context: IM, forum, in actual discussion... He insists they are always correct, so that in the end, everyone, including him, is proven wrong.
  • Done spectacularly in 8-Bit Theater. Following Black Belt's death in, many fans clamored for his return and pointed out that this could be accomplished by de-petrifying his doppleganger which was turned to stone way back near the start of the series. Clevinger responded by having White Mage attempt exactly that, and botch it horribly. The page where this happens is even titled, "Now Shut Up".
  • The Metal Gear Solid webcomic The Last Days of FOXHOUND has been so thoroughly and consistently Jossed — after each new game release since the series began — about so many things, from the manner in which one character lost an eye to his very state of existence — necessitating massive, unconvincing retcons that even the characters find sketchy. The author is aware of this phenomenom. In one of his last blog posts, he says "if I'm lucky, I can be done before MGS4 is released and my entire backstory is contradicted. Again". He was, and it was. Again. What's even more ironic is that the comic ended just under two weeks before MGS4's release.
  • Despite attempts to reasonably, albeit comically, tie into the storyline of Half-Life, the comic Concerned was pre-Jossed when their depiction of the elivery of the Xen Borderworld sample was already undone by Half-Life: Decay.
  • Randy Milholland seems to love to do this to his fans in Something*Positive. In fact, it could be said the only thing more enjoyable to him than not giving the fans what they want is giving them what they explicitly don't. "Dont Give Him Any Ideas" is uttered regularly on feed commentaries. An example: Pepito was originally going to live through the "insane catgirl massacre" storyline. Then somebody sent Milholland a letter saying he wasn't "allowed" to kill any of the characters. "Not even Pepito." Note that the insane catgirls are the in-universe personifications of possessive, loony Fan Dumb. Having that dead character killed off by a fictionalized variant of the exact type of person who trying to save him is delicious, delicious irony. (Or something similar.)
  • MS Paint Adventures:
    • While Andrew Hussie is usually very permissive of off-the-wall speculation, he sometimes feels the need to correct egregiously wrong interpretations. For instance, he has made it very clear that, in Homestuck, Jade's Grampa was Dead All Along, Kanaya prefers the ladies, and, most of all, WV IS NOT AN IMP.
    • When the Alpha Kids were first introduced there was a lot of speculation about what then unnamed Dirk and Roxy's personalities would be. The most common theory for Roxy was that she would be a scenester-esque Hard-Drinking Party Girl. Even more popularly, Dirk was theorised to be a loser anime fanboy with the Fan Nickname "Weeabro". Roxy's character turned out to be pretty close, though only on a superficial level as Roxy is also a passionate scientist and very kind friend. Dirk's did not, and Andrew expressed great distaste for the theory.
    • The trolls' Hemospectrum was thought to be a full, literal spectrum of various shades and almost all hues between the twelve seen in-comic, with each established blood color having its own subcastes of variations, evident by how the castes seen vary wildly in brightness (such as indigo blood being much brighter than cerulean or teal). The general fanon was that what Alternia deemed "mutations" were when the blood gets "too" bright by their standards. Andrew Hussie would later confirm that the Hemospectrum is instead a set of twelve discrete colors, excluding mutants but including the extinct lime caste.
    • Homestuck's Jossed WMG pages are far bigger than the confirmed and active theory pages; so much so there are multiple pages because all of them on one page was breaking browsers. This is because Hussie encourages a lot of speculation.
  • Nicole and Derek: JJ's full name was thought to be some derivative of "Joy," as it was thought she was Joy and Issac's daughter. The fandom was partially right: She was revealed as Issac's daughter from a previous relationship, making Joy her stepmother. She was 10 years old (hence already "JJ") when Issac found out she existed. We still don't know what "JJ" actually stands for.

    Web Original 
  • Here's an actual example of Joss jossing something: less than a week after fans announced the Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog prequel "Horrible Turn", Joss announced a prequel comic book that appears to be covering the same topics (meeting Captain Hammer, turning evil, etc.).
  • For a while, it was thought that the anthropomorphic animals in Darwin's Soldiers were originally humans turned into animals via advanced technology. Word of God states that the anthropomorphic animals were merely "there" alongside humans.
  • Atop the Fourth Wall:
    • A popular guess for the third "Event Comics Month" was Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers: Shattered Grid. However, Lovhaug has stated that "Event Comics Months" are about DC and Marvel and in any event, the story was merely between two comics, not a universe-spanning crossover.
    • Related to the third "ECM" was speculation that another "Combine Harvester" moment would happen during The Reveal Wally West was the killer in Heroes in Crisis. However, while his review makes it clear he agreed with the majority that it failed in the task, since the story was supposed to be a serious examination of mental health issues, he felt it'd be poor taste to do it. That said, the song does appear when he's mocking the fact that Sanctuary has no real psychiatric staff, but is instead ran by an AI based on the Trinity — despite that fact Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman have no such training.

Alternative Title(s): Josses


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