Follow TV Tropes



Go To

Strong Sad: So wait. Was there ever a "Jibblies 1"?
Strong Bad: Nah, horror movies don't even need first movies anymore.
Homestar Runner, "Jibblies 2"

An ongoing series skips an installment number (usually deliberately). Events from the missing installment may be referred to as if they had actually happened; there may even be an assurance that it was the highlight of the series.

Reasons for doing this include:

When the non-existent episode is treated by subsequent episodes as if it existed, related to Secondhand Storytelling and perhaps to Noodle Incident.

A related trick is to bring out a new work that claims to have been made years ago and then shelved or forgotten; we don't seem to have a trope page for that, but Garth Marenghis Darkplace is an example, and it's related to Retraux and Direct Line to the Author.

When there's supposedly an entire series of non-existent episodes preceding the first that actually exists, it's Retroactive Legacy.

See also Oddly Named Sequel 2: Electric Boogaloo, where a sequel might be given a strange numbering (such as The Naked Gun 33⅓ or Halloween H20) without meaning to imply a missing installment; and Unusual Chapter Numbers. Also Stopped Numbering Sequels which may predate Un Installment.

If the creator maintains an air of mystery around the missing installment, this trope may give rise to Pop Culture Urban Legends.

Not to be confused with Canon Discontinuity, in which the episode exists but is non-canon.


    open/close all folders 

    Anime and Manga 
  • The original Kujibiki♡Unbalance probably has the highest ratio of Un-Installment episodes to real episodes: out of the 26-episode series, only three episodes (1, 21, and 25) were actually made, though episode 21 happens to be a Recap Episode. The episodes were released as bonus material on the DVDs of Genshiken, to which it is a Show Within a Show.
  • Devil Hunter Yohko has no episode 4, because Four Is Death. (In the US, ADV Films filled the gap with a collection of music videos it called "Devil Hunter Yohko 4 Ever".)
  • Episode 12 of Excel♡Saga is called "Big City, Part II". There is no Big City, Part I, as Excel explains in the preview for episode 12.
  • This is standard operating procedure for mobile suit model numbers in Gundam works. In the original Mobile Suit Gundam the Zeon mobile suits we see start at MS-05 and end at (Y)MS-15, with several gaps along the way (and that's just the standard mobile suit line. Underwater, combat engineering and telepathically controlled models get their own numbering seriesnote , as do the non-humanoid mobile armorsnote  and aforementioned variants of same) and most subsequent sequels and spinoffs have followed suit. This is mainly to leave room for new models to hawk in the voluminous collection of spin-off manga, OAV series, video games, model kits, etc. At this point said spinoffs have completely filled in the original Zeon MS series and even added new ones up to MS-18 (and various video games and manga of dodgy cononicity have started into the early 20s). The main trio from the original series (RX-75-4 Guntank, RX-77-2 Guncannon and RX-78-2 Gundam) also present an interesting example. The main numbers are actually a model year and the Earth Federation canonically didn't develop any mobile suits in UC 0076, but those secondary numbers indicate there are previous versions of the design (which, again have since been filled out and even expanded upon in spinoffs).
  • Bokurano has something of an example, appropriately enough. Most of the Dimensional Robots get Reporting Names in alphabetical order (first is Arachnid, second is Bayonet, etc.) but the 15th and final one skips straight to Z for Zearth II.
  • Nobuhiko Horie, who was the editor-in-chief of Fist of the North Star, views the saga in four installments, with the original Fist of the North Star itself being Episode 4. Its prequel, Fist of the Blue Sky, serves as Episode 3, while two yet to be made prequels serve as Episodes 1 and 2. If these prequels ever get made, Episode 1 will be the story of Shuken (the Hokuto Shinken founder), while Episode 2 would deal with how the school immigrated to Japan during the feudal period.

    Comic Books 
  • DC Comics' Ambush Bug: Year None ended with "issue number 7 of a 6-issue limited series." There is no issue number 6, or at least none that was ever published. Apparently number 6 was completed (or nearly so), then shelved for reasons that still have not been made entirely clear. Number 7 came out many months later, wrapping up the series.
  • Back when they were at Image Comics, WildStorm and Rob Liefeld's Extreme Studios reversed this with a quasi-cross over event where they published their 25th issues months ahead of time to give a glimpse of the future and continued their series the next month. Several of the involved series never made it as far as #25, leaving the missing issues as uninstallments.
  • Captain Marvel first appeared in two Ashcan Copy comics titled Flash Comics #1 and Thunder Comics #1. Then his regular title, Whiz Comics, began with issue #2, and reprinted the whole of both ashcans. There is no Whiz Comics #1.
  • Spawn skipped issue 19 and 20 after long delays from writers Andrew Grossenberg and Tom Orzechowski, eventually soldiering ahead with issue 21 by Todd McFarlane. The "missing" issues were published approximately six months later. Interestingly, Spawn had shown up with a stitched up face in issue 21 said to have been caused by "That Bozo In Black", an obvious reference to the Batarang that landed there in the Spawn-Batman Crossover that had happened just prior to the issue's release. However, the Crossover was considered so generally terrible, that 19 and 20 featured a completely different "Bozo In Black", Harry Houdini, and a completely different reason for a vertical scar down Spawn's face, protecting his friend Terry from a bullet... which made a scar completely different than the one in 21... But if you're looking for sensical continuity, why the hell are you reading 90s Image Comics?.
  • Issues 6 and 7 of Too Much Coffee Man do not exist. Shannon Wheeler wanted to skip ahead in the story, saw no reason why he shouldn't, and took it as an opportunity to create "the rarest comics ever". #8 includes footnotes referring the reader to the missing issues.
  • The original Supreme series was deliberately identified in its indica (and on the first issue's cover) as "Supreme volume 2", as it featured the title character returning to Earth after fifty years' absence. Series creator Rob Liefeld wanted to eventually make a "volume 1" that would cover Supreme's exploits during World War II – this never ended up happening, with the glimpses of Supreme's Golden Age adventures being limited to occasional flashback stories.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The third movie in Robert Rodriguez's Mariachi Tetralogy. Basically, a fair number of people who saw Desperado didn't immediately realize that it was a sequel, until they realized they were missing backstory that the film kept referring and flashing back to. As a nod to this, Robert Rodriguez came up with an entire third installment that follows up Desperado, introduces new characters, has very major plot developments, and was promptly never produced. Once Upon a Time in Mexico is the sequel to that film, and throws in a lot of references to the plot and events of that film, which are central to El Mariachi's own character arc in the final film.
  • Than there's the German students-movie "Der Goldene Nazivampir von Absam 2 – Das Geheimnis von Schloß Kottlitz" (The Golden Nazi-Vampire of Absam 2 - The Secret of Castle Kottlitz). There never was a first part. As the whole movie is kind of a parody on trash horror movies, it is a joke on long and absurd trash horror titles.
  • Surf II, a comedy/horror about surfers turned into mutant zombie punks by a May Contain Evil chemical. Despite its name, there was not a Surf (OR Surf I).
  • Perhaps not exactly this, but definitely related, the "missing" reels in Grindhouse.
  • Dude Bro Party Massacre 3 claims to be the third part of a slasher franchise, with even a fake production history.
  • Mel Brooks has stated he would never make Spaceballs 2, but might make Spaceballs 3: The Search for Spaceballs 2
  • Zombi 2: Lucio Fulci's film based on a zombie epidemic on a tropical island. Despite its title implying that it is a sequel to another film, it's actually a standalone movie with no relation to any previous zombie films. The confusion comes from the fact that George A. Romero's Dawn of the Dead (1978) was renamed Zombi in Italy. Fulci's film was only named Zombi 2 to cash in on the success of Romero's film, even though there's no connection between the two.
  • Inverted with History of the World Part I, deceptively titled to create the illusion of an eventual sequel. It even ends with a trailer for Part II. This was part of an homage to Walter Raleigh's The History of the World, written while he was awaiting execution in the Tower of London and he only managed to complete the first volume before his sentence was carried out.
  • Nueba Yol (Misspelled Spanish for New York) was followed by Nueba Yol 3, due to a Dominician superstition about a first sequel.
  • War Comes to America, part of the Why We Fight series, has a "Part One" but no "Part Two"—due to the untimely end of World War II, none was ever made.
  • Played with zero-budget post-apocalyptic direct-to-video movie Empire of Ash. It was released as Empire of Ash in 1988 and re-released unchanged in 1989 as Empire of Ash II. It spawned one sequel called Empire of Ash III.
  • The Indian superhero movie Krrish was followed by a sequel called... Krrish 3 (with Krrish 4 coming after that). The titling is actually kind of a First Blood/Rambo deal: Krrish (working title Koi... Tumsa Nahin) was itself the direct sequel to the landmark sci-fi musical Koi... Mil Gaya, which was about Krrish's father, Rohit (Krrish and Rohit are played by the same actor), and the plots are closely related (both films have the same villain, for example). So Krrish 3 is the second film about Krrish, but the third film in a series about Rohit's experiences and their aftermath.
  • The sequel to Thanks Killing is titled ThanksKilling 3, with the absence of a ThanksKilling 2 justified in-universe because the movie was deemed so horrible that it was pulled from distribution and all known copies have been destroyed. The main plot of ThanksKilling 3 had Turkie try to find a copy of ThanksKilling 2 so he can use it to curse everyone.
  • Kung Pow! Enter the Fist ends with a fake trailer for a sequel called Kung Pow 2: Tongue of Fury.
  • There's a Spanish Dirty Harry spoof titled Vivancos 3: If It's Well Received, We'll Make The Previous Two.
  • The sequel to Brice de Nice (a French comedy starring Jean Dujardin that parodied, among other things, Point Break) is titled... Brice 3. Don't bother looking for a "Brice 2", there's none.

  • The Great Samuel Pepys Fiasco is a missing book in Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next series. Because it's all about the world where fiction is created, there's a very good in-story explanation for why it's missing.
  • Sideways Stories from Wayside School has no nineteenth chapter, because the builders forgot to build a nineteenth story.
  • Volume 4 of Tristram Shandy has no chapter 24. Chapter 25 helpfully starts by describing what would have been in chapter 24, if it had existed.
  • Theodor Mommsen's Roman History, which won him the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1902, consists of volumes 1, 2, 3 and 5. The first three describe the history of the Roman Republic and were published during Mommsen's lifetime. Volume 4, the history of Imperial Rome, was never finished (it was sort of replaced - in 1992! - by Mommsen's lectures on the subject, not from manuscripts of his own, but as they were written down by students). Volume 5 contains the history of the Roman provinces during the Imperial era.
  • Eugene Onegin consists of numbered stanzas within each of its eight chapters, but some of these stanzas are left blank, e. g. Nos. 9, 13, 14, 39, 40 and 41 in the first chapter.
  • Chapter 11 of Heinrich Heine's book Ideen - Das Buch Le Grand ("Ideas - The Book Le Grand") reads thusly:
    German censors - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - idiots - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
  • The Kurt Vonnegut novel Timequake probably qualifies. In-story, time ran backwards for several years, then played back out again. Vonnegut makes frequent references to a previous version of Timequake he wrote during this temporal slip, which he refers to as Timequake One, and that doesn't exist.
  • Some bowdlerized editions of Giacomo Casanova's autobiography start with chapter 5.
  • The preface to Moscow to the End of the LineAKA  says that in the first draft one chapter contained too many cuss words (appropriate for a philosophical drunk on a long boring train journey that has just started). The author had to add a warning for sensitive girls, but it had the opposite effect, thus he ended up removing all obscenities, leaving only "And he drank immediately."
  • The Conan novel The Hour of the Dragon has no chapter 20. It has been speculated that when publishing arrangements in Britain fell through and the manuscript was returned to Robert E. Howard, the missing chapter was omitted. This theory is based on the word count of the published work and Howard's correspondence with Dennis Archer concerning the original. Whether this is so, or Howard deleted the chapter himself, both he and Weird Tales neglected to renumber the remaining chapters. It has also been suggested that Weird Tales simply made a mistake and skipped the number. The story does not suffer from the omission, and most reprintings renumber chapters 21-23 as 20-22.
  • The Doctor Who Novelisations adaptation of The Day of the Doctor at one point has a Clue from Ed. directing the reader to the novelisation of "Silence in the Library"/"Forest of the Dead", which is available in all good parallel universes. And another referring to the novelisation of "Listen", to be published in 2195. There's also Chapter Nine, which is initially described by the Mysterious Narrator as the most dangerous chapter in the book, then as the one that gives the answers to all the questions about the Doctor's life, then as the one you've just read, only it wiped your memory.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Power Rangers has "Scorpion Rain", which straddles the line between this, Urban Legend of Zelda, and Ascended Fanon. A supposed 8 minute short that bridged Power Rangers Zeo and Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie, released only in Australia, the thing was supposed to be incredibly poorly done, but would fill in enough plot holes that the fandom went along with it. Eventually though, it was revealed as an elaborate prank. Later, in the Crossover "Forever Red", events of the battle "Scorpion Rain" supposedly depicted were referenced. Writer Amit Bhaumik, also one of the pranksters, admitted that he set out to make the darn thing canon.
  • Red Dwarf: Series VIII was followed by a ten-year hiatus and then by a three-part special, Back to Earth, which claimed to be set "after Series X" and referred to several significant events from the skipped-over Series IX. Done partly to acknowledge the hiatus and partly to avoid needing to spend time resolving Series VIII's cliffhanger ending. Series IX's absence is lampshaded in Back to Earth by the character Noddy: "Best season ever if you ask me. Awesome season! Best by miles!"
    • However, the success of Back to Earth led to the production of a new full series. Taking place after Back to Earth, it was numbered Series X, as "Red Dwarf X" was felt to be a better title for marketing the next series. Back to Earth effectively took the place of Series IX in all but name.
  • Doctor Who:
    • "Season 6B", a bunch of postulated Second Doctor stories set after Season 6 but before the Time Lords forced his regeneration into the Third Doctor, based on the idea that what we see at the end of Season 6 is not actually the Doctor's regeneration. It's strongly alluded to in "The Two Doctors" and contemporary comic strips, and more recent Expanded Universe material delve into this period in detail.
    • "Shada", the Season 17 season finale, was abandoned when about two thirds done thanks to industrial action. Some footage of it was eventually incorporated into the show, edited in order to bring the Fourth Doctor into "The Five Doctors" as a Fake Shemp. This has caused its canonical status to be ambiguous, which the Expanded Universe has happily exploited, especially in the audio drama version of the story — in which the Eighth Doctor has to go through the events, because the events of "The Five Doctors" erased it from the timeline. A novelisation that presented the story with the Fourth Doctor but with lots of new-series-compatible details added came out in 2012, and in the 90s a VHS reconstruction of the story was released, and even that might be a bit canonical as Tom Baker's narrator character ends up becoming a Canon Immigrant in "The Day of the Doctor" (of all things). No-one knows which version of "Shada" actually happened - maybe they all did, maybe none at all - and everyone is comfortable keeping it that way.
    • The new series concept of the Time War, and The War Doctor in "The Day of the Doctor", are both Watsonian metaphors for the "Wilderness Years" during which the show was cancelled. The Time War is an apocalyptic Great Offscreen War that threw reality itself into confusion and permanently darkened the Doctor as a person, much like the branching arms and Darker and Edgier excursions of the Expanded Universe did. The War Doctor is supposed to represent the Doctor we could have had during the Wilderness Years, and Steven Moffat has said his intention was to cause annoyance and frustration - viewers are supposed to feel that they could have had decades of adventures of John Hurt, but instead we got nothing.
    • The producers of the classic series gave each story an alphabetical production code, starting with story A. (If you were wondering, story Z was followed by story AA, but story ZZZ was followed by story 4A. In a weird coincidence, both ZZ and ZZZ were the final stories for the incumbent doctor at the time—Two and Three, respectively.) To avoid any confusion between I, J, and 1 and between O, Q, and 0, story codes I and O were skipped. Not surprisingly, given the number of times the series changed producers and the overall passivity regarding long-term continuity, the pattern of which letters were skipped varied over the years: I was always skipped, but O was sometimes retained (there's a story OO, but no story OOO), and variations were introduced. For example, VVV was skipped, perhaps to avoid confusing U and V, or perhaps to ensure ZZZ lined up with the end of the Third Doctor's run; the next time around, 4U was skipped instead and 4V retained, the pattern persisting thereafter with 5U and 6U skipped and 5V and 6V retained (the last code to be used was 7Q). This is played with in short story "Thief of Sherwood", which is written as the paratext for a fictional Hartnell serial with the story code I.
  • Heroes Reborn (2015) happens 5 years after Heroes was Left Hanging following its fourth season. Creator Tim Kring admitted that this trope is employed to explain the Time Skip: “We’re treating this as if this is not the fifth season. We’re actually treating it as like the tenth season, as though there were actually seasons in between."
  • Goosebumps never adapted the first Night of the Living Dummy book, despite doing its sequels. This might be because Slappy wasn't its main villain. Similarly, book #5 (The Curse of the Mummy's Tomb) was never adapted, but its sequel Return of the Mummy was.

  • The Traveling Wilburys' first album was titled The Traveling Wilburys Volume One as a joke, because they were never going to do a Volume Two. When they did release a follow-up, it was titled The Traveling Wilburys Volume Three.
    • Although it was just a joke, it led to various rumors about why there was no Volume Two. Two outtakes from Volume Three were bootlegged extensively before being officially released in 2007, and it was sometimes claimed that they were from the "missing" Volume Two. A fan theory also held that Tom Petty's Full Moon Fever and/or Roy Orbison's Mystery Girl comprised "Volume Two" - both were solo albums by Traveling Wilburys members released between Volume One and Volume Three, both were produced by Jeff Lynne, and both included guest appearances by other Wilburys members, with only Bob Dylan not appearing on either.
  • Chickenfoot pulled a similar joke when they called their second album Chickenfoot III.
  • Calexico's The Black Light has a song called "The Ride, Pt II". There is no Part I. Similarly, Hot Rail has "Untitled III" and "Untitled II" (in that order), but no "Untitled I".
  • UK indie rock band The Vaccines has a song called "Change of Heart Part 2" on their second album, Come of Age. There's no "Change of Heart Part 1", though.
  • Beastie Boys: There was no Hot Sauce Committee Part One before the release of Part Two, but apparently one is now in the works and will be based on unused material from Part Two. If/when it ever comes out, it will also be the final album featuring the three members (due to Adam Yauch's passing).
  • Alien Ant Farm's debut album was titled "Greatest Hits," implying it was a compilation of earlier albums that don't exist.
    • Reggie and the Full Effect similarly called their debut Greatest Hits 1984–1987 - the band didn't even form until the 1990s.
  • After an eight-year gap, the band Boston finally released their third album in 1986. They joked in interviews that to speed things along, they were going to skip their fourth album and go straight to the fifth. (It didn't work; their next album took another eight years.)
  • Throbbing Gristle named their first album Second Annual Report, although it was the sequel to an album that didn't get released at the time.
  • The subtitle for the Rush instrumental from Roll the Bones, "Where's My Thing" is "(Part IV, 'Gangster of Boats' Trilogy)". There is no Gangster of Boats part I, II, or III.
  • Ian Dury and The Blockheads bring us "Reasons to Be Cheerful, Part 3". The song is not part of a series in any way.
  • Akphaezya have released two albums so far: Anthology II: Links from the Dead Trinity and Anthology IV: The Tragedy Of Nerak.
  • Both of Fantômas' first two albums skip the 13th track.
  • Not quite this, but clearly operating on the same priciple: The Aquabats! entitled their first album The Return of the Aquabats!.
  • New wave revivalists The Rentals also called their debut album Return of the Rentals.
  • Charles Ives composed two pieces titled Tone Roads No. 1 and Tone Roads No. 3. There is no Tone Roads No. 2.
  • HIM's first album is called Greatest Love Songs Vol. 666. The number was only used for its occult connotations; it goes without saying that these guys aren't following up a series of albums 665 entries in the making, let alone albums of love songs, albums by HIM, or albums of love songs by HIM.
  • ABC's first album The Lexicon Of Love contained "The Look Of Love [Part 1]" and "The Look Of Love [Part 4]". The song DOES have Parts 2 and 3, but they were only included on its 12" single.
  • Bob Marley And The Wailers' early album "Soul Revolution Part II" was titled as such as it was the follow up to "Soul Rebels" (which was the first album recorded for Lee Scratch Perry [who compiled both of them] and thus 'Part I'). It is often mistaken for the title of the album's dub version, which was actually called "Upsetter Revolution Rhythm". The confusion was not helped by the fact, due to his debts at the time, Perry packaged some copies of the dub album in the vocal album's sleeve. When Trojan reissued both the vocal and dub albums together in 1988, they called the set "Soul Revolution 1 & 2", though later reissues restored the original cover and title.
  • Karma To Burn, with very few exceptions, name their songs with numbers representing the order in which they were composed. Not only are their albums' tracklistings not arranged with any rhyme or reason with respect to these numbers, but especially very early on in their history they tend to never release certain numbers. What happens with the missing numbers is anyone's guess - while they did release "1" on one of their own albums, "2" has yet to be released this way since they actually gave it to their side project Year Long Disaster. It can result in songs being resurrected at odd times, like "23" being released when the band were well into the 50s in their song catalog. It's also known that "9" and "15" have survived in their concert setlists for many years; why they are live staples but have never been released in studio form is anyone's guess.
  • Man or Astro-man? got meta with it, releasing a song titled "Obligatory Part 2 Song in Which There Is No Presently Existing Part 1, Nor the Plans to Make One" (from their album A Spectrum of Infinite Scale).
  • Men Without Hats have an EP titled Folk Of The 80's and an album called Folk of the 80's (Part III), but there's no "Part II": Folk of the 80s (Part III) was their third release overall, though.

    Mythology and Religion 
  • This even happens in The Bible. In the New Testament Letters, St Paul speaks approvingly of an Old Testament prophet called Enoch and warmly recommends the book of Enoch the Prophet as a religious work the Christian should read so as to broaden their wisdom and get a deeper understanding of their faith. Now go to the Old Testament. It is only a book in the Orthodox Tewahedo tradition. Outside of Ethiopia and Eritrea, there are a few scattered references to a great Prophet called Enoch, by inference in the next division down from Moses - but no book of that name.

  • I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue went from its 73rd series to its 75th; there are usually two series a year, but Series 73 was the only series of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic interrupting the recordings (it was made up of the two episodes they managed to do before the UK went into lockdown, followed by four episodes recorded from the participants' homes with a virtual audience). This is generally thought to be a mistake that the BBC decided to double down on when it was pointed out to them, but nevertheless it remains the case that officially, there is no 74th series of the show, which is considered to have been cancelled.
  • On Round the Horne, one of the show's spoof dramas jumped from part one to part three, with the explanation that "you wouldn't have liked part two - it was all plot." On another occasion, a Three Musketeers spoof stretched over two shows; in the show after that, it was announced "At this point we were going to do The Three Musketeers part three... But we got fed up with that."

  • Microsoft's first version of Windows NT (which currently forms the basis of all desktop, workstation, and server versions of Windows as of Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, with the NT branding dropped with the earlier Windows 2000) was given the version 3.1 to match the version number of the then-current DOS-based version of Windows, which was also numbered 3.1. Unlike the DOS-based versions, there were no 1.x, 2.x, or 3.0 versions of it.
    • Partially justified in that Windows NT was a sequel to Microsoft/IBM OS/2, which had 1.x and 2.x versions. A lot of early marketing and technical information about Windows NT 3.1 indicated this, although as Microsoft moved away from the OS/2 name (IBM having continued development on its own branch) the ties became less visible as time went on.
    • In a related Microsoft Windows example, despite its colloquial name, Windows 7, internally at least, is not version 7.0 of the Windows software. Instead, it runs on the Windows NT kernel internally known as edition 6.1, being a mere update of Windows Vista instead of a more drastically changed operating system like Vista was to XP. note 
      • The following version of Windows, Windows 8, is also internally known as Windows version 6.2. Windows 8.1 is internally version 6.3.
      • Windows 8 was itself followed by Windows 10, skipping the number 9, and leading to the occasional joke about them skipping the good one. Windows 95 and 98 are sometimes collectively referred to as "Windows 9x", so 9 was skipped partly to prevent any confusion with thatnote . Also, the internal version jumped ahead to 10.0 to match the marketed number, which means that, internally, versions 7 through 9 are all Uninstallments.
  • Internally, Microsoft's Office 2007 is known as version 12, while the 2010 version is known as version 14, due to that number.
  • Similarly, Visual Studio 2013 is internally version 12. The next version, Visual Studio 2015, is version 14.
    • Visual Studio started on version 5.0. There are no versions 1-4.
  • Apple's Final Cut Pro skipped from version 7 to X (10).
  • Winamp 3 was criticized by users for being buggier and more resource hungry than the 2.x series, and for missing features such as backwards compatibility with Winamp 2 skins. The next version, Winamp 5, was named to signify the fact that it was based off the 2.0 version and incorporated features from the 3.0 version (such as the new skinning system), and because they did not want people making Winamp 4 skins.
  • When Netscape released the codebase of Navigator 4, the intent was that community-made improvements would be rolled into version 5. However, the code turned out to be too difficult to work with, leading to a complete rewrite and using the new Mozilla codebase as the underpinnings of Netscape 6.
  • To synchronize the version numbers of Firefox and Thunderbird (which previously had the latter being given lower version numbers), Mozilla completely skipped version 4.0 of the latter and released version 5.0 of it around the same time as version 5.0 of the former (which did have a version 4.0 when Thunderbird was still at version 3). Currently, both programs still follow a similar numbering system.
  • The first version of dBase was dBase II. The creators wanted to give the impression that it wasn't a buggy first release, but a settled product.
  • DRDOS went straight from version 3 to version 5, because of the poor reputation of MSDOS 4.
  • Microsoft's Visual C++ compiler skipped version 3, so that its version number would match the version of the MFC library it was supplied with.
  • CyanogenMod, a custom version of the Android mobile platform. There was never a CyanogenMod 1 or 2, and CyanogenMod 8, which was to be based on Android 3.xnote  was skipped because Google only published the source code for 3.x when they released Android 4.0 and the devs decided to just jump straight to CM9.

  • Since the official title of the Olympic Games is "the Games of the nth Olympiad" and the word "olympiad" refers to the four year time period instead of the games themself, the number increases by one every four years even when the Games didn't take place (in 1916, 1940 and 1944).
  • The first time the German football (soccer to Americans) championship was held in 1903, one of the semi-finals was DSC Prague vs. Karlsruhe FV. The Karlsruhe club received a fake telegram that the match had been postponed and did not show up, and Prague went on to the final (where it lost to VfB Leipzig) by default. The following year, the final was going to be held in Berlin, but because it involved Britannia Berlin, Karlsruhe FV protested that this was not on neutral ground. The protest was successful, but resulted not in the final being adjourned to another city, but being canceled. Therefore 1904 there was no German football champion.
  • Due to the 2004 lockout of the National Hockey League, The Stanley Cup has a "Season not played" under 2004-05.

    Tabletop Games 
  • BattleTech: When Technical Readout 3025 was published in 1986, it contained among other things the Hermes II Battlemech but no Hermes Battlemech. The Hermese wouldn't make its debut until the publication of Technical Readout 2750 in 1989.
  • Paranoia has had (in order) 1st edition, 2nd edition, 5th edition (later declared an "unproduct"), and 3rd edition (unpublished). Starting with the revival, they Stopped Numbering Sequels, instead releasing XP (formally dropped after Microsoft complained, so this version was just called "Paranoia") and 25th Anniversary Edition (a reprint of XP with some additional material).
  • The one-off Magic: The Gathering set Coldsnap is an example of the aforementioned trick where a new work is presented as a forgotten older one. Originally, the Ice Age block (released in 1995-96) consisted of Ice Age, Alliances, and the unrelated and universally reviled set Homelands, which was shoehorned into the block (mainly because this was before Wizards started doing blocks like we would know them today). When Coldsnap, which was designed to fit retroactively into Ice Age block as the "real" third set, was announced in 2006, Wizards claimed that it was based on a lost design file from 1995, uncovered when they moved their offices across the street. (The claim was intended to be tongue-in-cheek, but this didn't really come across and many players became annoyed, forcing them to come clean.) The idea of Coldsnap as the "real" third set, however, is Canon; it is legal for play in Ice Age Block Constructed, and Homelands is no longer acknowledged as part of the block.
  • Hack Master, as a joke, released its first edition (a slightly tweaked version of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 1st Edition) under the moniker "Hackmaster 4th Edition". This led to the 2nd edition of the game (which had its own unique system) being released as "Hackmaster 5th Edition".
  • Gangbusters, a 1982 roleplaying game by TSR, had its 1990 2nd edition labeled as a "New 3rd Edition" instead.
  • In-Universe example: It is agreed, that the world of The Dark Eye is in its 12th eon. However, there is no knowledge, evidence or hints about the 8th eon, which may have been erased from existence by the gods themselves.
  • Grimtooth's Traps: As a joke, Flying Buffalo skipped over the number 3 and went from "Traps Too" to "Traps Fore", claiming in Fore's introduction that (the non-existent) "Traps Three" had been confiscated in a government raid on their office. Then a few years later Steve Jackson Games really was raided by the US government and an upcoming sourcebook confiscated. Flying Buffalo apologized for the no-longer-funny joke in the next printing of "Traps Fore".

    Theme Parks 

  • Alton Towers' series of "Secret Weapon" coasters begins with Secret Weapon 3: Nemesis. Twice before Nemesis was built, Alton Towers had worked with manufacturer Arrow Dynamics to bring a pipeline coaster to the park, but this coaster never came to fruition. The numbering still counts the two attempts, and the "Secret Weapon" name itself is a remnant of the scrapped coaster's planned theme.

    Video Games 
  • The title screen of Apidya suggests that the game is called "Apidya II", which has led many people to wonder what the first Apidya game was. The developers later admitted that the "II" was supposed to be a joke in attempt to stir excitement.
  • Breath of Death VII, an indie throwback RPG, which follows the old-school formula pioneered by games such as Dragon Quest.
  • While it may seem like Crash Bandicoot 4: It's About Time is doing the reverse of this trope by not counting the Crash Bandicoot games made after Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped as proper sequels, its numbering is justified since it takes place directly after Warped.
  • The Danganronpa franchise plays with this in Danganronpa V3: Killing Harmony with the reveal that it's actually Danganronpa 53, making Next Danganronpa 4: Despair Beyond Hope to Dangan Ronpa 52 Un-Installments. (The actual Danganronpa 3 takes the form of an anime series instead of a game.)
  • A beat 'em up web browser game titled Electric Man 2 was intentionally titled to falsely resemble a sequel, with no true predecessor.
  • The main NCR quest in Fallout: New Vegas is titled "For the Republic, Part 2", but there isn't a "Part 1", although the quest begins immediately after the quest "King's Gambit".
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Translation of the series into English started with Final Fantasy IV and Final Fantasy VI, which were released as II and III, respectively, then skipped ahead to VII. Later re-releases uses its original, correct numbers.
    • Exploited in Final Fantasy X, where Tidus's father Jecht has a blitzball skill, the Sublimely Magnificent Jecht Shot Mark III. Tidus notes how there was never a Mark I or Mark II, and that it would entice fans to watch him play blitzball waiting for the earlier installments. And they did come back to watch.
  • Fur Fighters (subtitled Viggo's Revenge at least in the PS2 version) starts with all the major characters retired after already defeating Viggo the first time. Throughout the game there are hints to their exploits but there never was another game, and sadly probably never will be.
  • The 1984 sequel to Galaga, Gaplus, had conversion kits that changed its name to Galaga 3 in North America. There was no Galaga 2, though the number 3 may have counted Galaga's predecessor Galaxian as an entry.
  • Goat Simulator spawned a sequel that is titled Goat Simulator 3, skipping over Goat Simulator 2. When the developers were making Goat Simulator 3, they thought they had made Goat Simulator 2, but when they realised they didn't it was too late to change the title.
  • Grezzo 2 lead many to believe that the title was trolling or a reference to whatsoever. The author later revealed that he really made a "Grezzo 1", but he doesn't want to upload it online, as it's filled with in-jokes and references that only himself and few friends of him would understand.
  • Just Kill Me 3 is the sequel to Just Kill Me, Just Kill Me 2 having been destroyed by God.
  • Lacuna III. There is no Lacuna I or II, as the idea is that this is actually a modified copy of a (fictional) 1993 game bearing that title, whose preceding volumes are presumably lost media.
  • Al Lowe envisioned Leisure Suit Larry 3: Passionate Patti in Pursuit of the Pulsating Pectorals as the definitive end to the Leisure Suit Larry trilogy, and the game ended with Larry and Patti stuck in the real world, living happily together and coding adventure games based on Larry's adventures. Whenever anyone would ask if his next project would be Larry 4, he would respond that there would never be a Larry 4. Instead, he and the rest of Sierra focused their efforts on creating a new online platform, which eventually fell through. However, when the time came for Al Lowe to make a real sequel to Larry 3, he found he'd written himself into a creative corner with Larry 3's airtight ending, so he decided to stay true to his promise and skipped right to Leisure Suit Larry 5: Passionate Patti Does a Little Undercover Work, where Larry and Patti are separated again, and suffering from amnesia. The missing game eventually becomes a major plot point in Larry 5, where it's revealed that the Big Bad, Julius Bigg, stole the master floppies to Larry 4, causing Larry and Patti to lose their memories. The game's non-existence is a running joke in the series, and the game (under the title Leisure Suit Larry 4: The Missing Floppies) appears in Space Quest IV: Roger Wilco and the Time Rippers and Leisure Suit Larry: Magna Cum Laude. Ken Willaims also avertises The Missing Floppies in the SCI remake of the first game, saying that he would sell the game to the public if only he could actually find out where it was.
  • The DOS versions of the Mega Man consists of only Mega Man and its sequel, Mega Man 3. Neither of the DOS versions were ports of the actual NES games. This is because one of the bosses in the second DOS game, Bit Man, resembles Spark Man from the box art of the NES Mega Man 3, so Capcom titled it Mega Man 3 to justify reusing the NES box art.
  • Averted with Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, which had the Working Title of "MGS III", despite it being the second MGS game and fourth in the mainline canon. The Roman numeral III was intended to represent the twin towers, but also because the full title would've been rendered "Metal Gear S3" (after the S3 Plan that served as a key plot point in the game's story).
  • An accidental case of this occurred in Minecraft during its early days. The 0.25_04 SURVIVAL TEST version of the game never existed, but a user mistakenly changed the version on the wiki to 0.25_04. This lead Notch to believe that it was the current update, so he called the next update 0.25_05 SURVIVAL TEST.
  • The "Ogre Battle Saga" was planned by creator Yasumi Matsuno to be an 8-episode saga, with Ogre Battle (March of the Black Queen) serving as Episode V, while Tactics Ogre (Let Us Cling Together) served as Episode VII. However, Matsuno left Quest (the developer of the series) to work for SquareSoft instead and Quest ended up developing Ogre Battle 64 (Episode VI) without his involvement and no more Ogre Battle games were made since then, aside from two side-stories (Ogre Battle: Prince of Zenobia for the Neo-Geo Pocket Color and Tactics Ogre: The Knight of Lodis for the Game Boy Advance).
  • The 1982 arcade game Pepper II was so named because video games were a new fad at the time and it was possible to have a game not in your area. Exidy, the makers of Pepper II, banked on the concept that if a "sequel" was made to the original (but non-existent) Pepper, then prospective audiences might figure that was a series that proved itself with a first installment that was successful enough to warrant a sequel, and/or think it to be even better than the original and thus want to play.
  • Power Punch II was originally going to be a direct sequel to Punch-Out!! titled Mike Tyson's Intergalactic Power Punch, but the combination of Nintendo's distaste at the game's quality and Tyson himself being convicted of rape forced Beam Software to change the title and give it to a different publisher. Why they decided to give a numeral "II" is anyone's guess.
  • Data Design Interactive's Rig Racer 2: There was never a Rig Racer 1, although the name echoes an equally horrible rig "racing" game.
  • The story of Shenmue was planned out in roughly 16 chapters. The original game was just Chapter 1 (Yokozuka), while Shenmue II consists of Chapters 3 through 5 (Hong Kong, Kowloon and Guilin). Chapter 2 occurs off-screen between the events of the two games (during Ryo's cruise trip from Yokozuka to Hong Kong). Shenmue III picks up where the second game left off.
  • Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo. There is no "Puzzle Fighter", "Puzzle Fighter II", or "Super Puzzle Fighter II". The title is meant to be a play on Super Street Fighter II Turbo, the fifth iteration of the Street Fighter II sub-series, and the game is a one-off Puzzle Game spinoff.
  • Tales of Monkey Island doesn't follow on directly from Escape from Monkey Island, but instead from a non-existent (and reportedly "epic") fifth Monkey Island game, presumably as a nod to the previous game where some characters refer to their "five-game contract" with LucasArts.
  • The TurboGrafx-16 pinball game, Time Cruise, was actually Time Cruise II in Japan. However, the original Time Cruise was a real game that was never actually released. The game's publisher, Face, for some reason decided to make a sequel to an unreleased game.
  • Xenogears. The end credits reveal that the game is actually Episode 5, similar to how Star Wars started with Episode 4. The original team intended to do more sequels/prequels, however SquareSoft pulled the plug on the project; the team subsequently left Square and made a sort-of prequel series as Xenosaga .... which was itself cut short and only had 3 of the 6 planned episodes released.
  • Data Design Interactive released the Egyptian-themed platformer Anubis II in 2007. There is no Anubis I...and the game's poor quality ensured there wouldn't be a III either.
  • The sequel to McPixel, McPixel 3. There is no McPixel 2, but people wouldn't blame you for not knowing.
  • Yeah Yeah Beebiss II is a fan sequel to the alleged (but likely non-existent) lost NES game Yeah Yeah Beebiss I listed by the mail-order video game service Play It Again in 1989 and theorized to be a mistranslated localization of Bandai's Rai Rai Kyonshis: Baby Kyonshi Amida no Daibouken.
  • Inverted with the 1980s space RPG Sentinel Worlds I. The creators were so confident that the game would be successful enough to get a sequel, they actually tacked a number onto the end of the "first" game from the start. No sequel was ever made. Dunning-Kruger effect at work, perhaps?

  • xkcd skips directly from #403 to #405. Attempts to view the URL where #404 would be if it existed result in HTTP error message 404 ("Page not found").
    • A strip did appear on the xkcd site between 403 and 405—but not an xkcd strip. 403 was posted on March 31, 2008, and 405 was posted on April 2. On April 1, the site displayed a (science-themed) Questionable Content strip, as part of a three-way switcheroo also involving Dinosaur Comics (which displayed an xkcd strip).

    Web Original 
  • The "Dinosaur" series of shorts by Waverly Films has no part three, but does helpfully recap the events of three at the beginning of part four.
  • Arfenhouse Teh Movie 3 and 4 were both released as April Fools' Day pranks in 2005 and 2006 respectively. Finally, a proper sequel, Arfenhouse Teh Movie 6, was released later in 2006, with no 5th installment.
  • Sad Panda Q&A skips episode 8. Apparently, it had cameos by a number of That Guy with the Glasses contributors, as well as The Angry Video Game Nerd and Yahtzee. Episode 9 starts with Panda and Welshy unsure on how to follow it.
  • Homestar Runner
    • The Strong Bad Email "personal favorites" had Strong Bad list a number of favorite emails from episodes that never happened, like Strong Bad getting drunk on soy sauce and trying to fly Bubs' Concession Stand, Coach Z and Pom Pom getting into a knife fight, or Strong Bad making a prank call so epic it made Marzipan's answering machine explode. Oddly enough, some of the elements from this email were shown to be Real After All, like the Grape-Nuts Robot and the stone bridge seen in the knife-fight scene.
    • The 2007 Halloween special was titled "Jibblies 2", despite the fact the creators never released a toon titled "Jibblies". Strong Sad lampshaded this in an Easter Egg.
    • Then there are the "Hremails", supposedly episodes of an email show that Homestar does in parallel to Strong Bad (and has apparently been going on since the site started, according to the 7th one). The first one we see is around number 1000 (compare to the 205 sbemails), and later ones mentioned seem to have a random installment number. The last one seen is in the 3000s, implying Homestar answers at least 7 emails a day, and he appropriately looks like he's burnt out when the Hremail begins.
  • ClickHole has two variants:
  • The episode There Is No Part 1: Part 2 from Welcome to Night Vale.
  • Mark Prindle's music reviews usually put "reader comments" under the review, but for Napalm Death's The Code Is Dead, Long Live The Code, the text of the review is completely blank, and the first comment is a fictional reader writing at length about how offended they were by the supposed review. It's meant to skewer both commenters who are overly protective of their favorite artists and Prindle's own stream-of-consciousness writing style and tendencies towards off-topic digressions and toilet humor.
  • C0DA, written by former The Elder Scrolls series writer/designer Michael Kirkbride, takes place in the far distant future of TES universe. C0DA is the final text of a semi-official and loosely connected series of "Obscure Texts", including Loveletter From the Fifth Era, The Prophet of Landfall, the "partially released" Landfall: Day One, and two "Uninstallments" - Dies Irae and Stringendo. The situation is reminiscent of the missing portions of The Trojan Cycle, in which it is generally known what happens, but the details are lost. Some of the events of those works are mentioned via Secondhand Storytelling in C0DA and the other supplementary works.
  • Chapters 37 to 41 of Saga of the People of Tattúín River Valley, which should cover the attack on the Daudstjarna/Death Star, battle for Hoth and Lúkr's training with Jóði/Yoda, are missing, to simulate an actual experience of a discovered 1000-year-old manuscript.
  • EVO Moment #37, the legendary footage from EVO 2004, where Diago Umehara makes an insane comeback against Justin Wong in Street Fighter III: Third Strike, which included him fully parrying Chun-Li's Super. If you were wondering about where the footage of EVO Moment #1 to 36 are, there aren't any. The person who uploaded the original video gave the video title a random number, part of it as a marketing ploy to say there were a lot of great moments in EVO.
  • An interesting case in Space Tree, as after episode 57, the next episode released was numbered 59. However, episode 57 was the first part of a two-parter, being named "They Got Johnny, Part 1", with the second part presumably being the unmade episode 58.

    Western Animation 
  • American Dad!: "Merlot Down Dirty Shame" begins with a recap that shows Stan and Roger becoming best friends after being trapped in an elevator, complete with getting complimentary "best buddies" necklaces. It ends with a preview of the next episode, where Stan beats Roger into a bloody pulp and takes away his necklace, turning both into a pair of earrings for Francine.
  • Centaurworld has the episodes "Holes: Part 2" and "Holes: Part 3", despite there not being a "Holes: Part 1".
  • Clerks: The Animated Series: The first episode begins with Randall announcing "Last week on Clerks..." and cuts to a test pattern. It never actually aired, so it only makes sense on DVD.
  • Ed, Edd n Eddy: "The Good Ol' Ed" looks like it's setting up for a Clip Show, but the "flashbacks" are instead to never-before-seen escapades involving the Eds, such as Edd using a fake time machine to send Jimmy and Johnny 2x4 on a Fauxtastic Voyage to prehistoric times, Edd getting a bad case of the hiccups and trying to cure them, and the Eds trying to make the world's biggest pancake using the entire cul-de-sac as the griddle.
  • OK K.O.! Let's Be Heroes: The final episode, "Thank You For Watching The Show", is mostly composed of a Time Passes Montage consisting of peeks at hypothetical future adventures that occurred between the Grand Finale "Let's Fight To The End" and the episode's Distant Finale.
  • Samurai Jack numbers its episodes by Roman numeral, which are used as alternate titles, and the original run goes up to "LII" (52). For the fifth season, the numbers skipped up to "XCII" (92) at the start to reflect the long time since it was uncancelled and the Time Skip since season four.
  • South Park:
    • The episode "AWESOM-O" mentioned a lost Lemmiwinks sequel that never actually existed; the disclaimer claims it was lost because of the "disaster in Hawaii".
    • The Season 10 premire, "The Return of Chef", opens with a Previously on… depicting Chef leaving South Park to join the Super Adventure Club and his friends being upset over him doing this.
    • The episode "Go God, Go" ended with Cartman recently arriving in the far future. The next episode is "Go God, Go XII", which began with a Buck Rogers opening parody leading to Cartman seemingly months later, as if there were ten episodes about Cartman in the future that were just skipped.
  • Thomas & Friends: The adaptation of "The Missing Coach" was scrapped during production because its plot was deemed too much of a Mind Screw for young children. The events are referenced in a later episode, so they did happen, we just never saw them.
  • The Venture Bros.: "Escape to the House of Mummies, Part Two" begins with a Previously on… that shows the best parts of Part One and ends with a On the Next for Part Three; neither actually exists. The creator commentary on the DVD edition of the episode features the creators claiming that the episodes exist as Easter eggs as a prank on the audience.
  • Rick and Morty has a Season 3 episode called "Vindicators 3: The Return of Worldender", but is the first episode of the series to feature the Vindicators. The first Vindicators installment is indicated by dialogue to have been one of Rick's and Morty's numerous offscreen adventures in the past ("we did it once, it was the big event of the summer"), and they find out later on that they weren't even invited to the second assembly (probably due to them all hating Rick), much to Morty's disappointment.
  • The Simpsons had several gags referencing fake episodes:
  • In The Dover Boys, while introducing the titular brothers, the narrator cites a fictional installment of the series called "The Dover Boys in the Everglades".

    Real Life 
  • An accidental example exists in papal history: Owing to various misconceptions and transcription errors, there has never been a Pope John XX. The Pope who would have borne that number skipped straight to John XXI when choosing his papal name.
  • There have been ten kings of Sweden named Carl or Karl (sometimes translated as Charles or Carolus), including the current one; however, the current King of Sweden is numbered Carl XVI. The number is six higher than expected due to the third one styling himself Karl IX with reference to a pseudo-historical list of kings, which straight made up six King Karls before the historical ones.
  • Chrysler's 300 "letter series" ran from 1955-1965. But the list of models skips from 300-H to 300-J. This is because the letter "I" too closely resembles the number "1".
    • A similar situation caused the lettered streets in Washington DC to skip "J". At the time Pierre L'Enfant designed the city grid, "I" and "J" were often treated as interchangeable, and "J" was often written/printed with only a slight bit of curvature to distinguish it from "I".
    • In many military units with lettered sub-units "J" is similarly skipped to avoid confusion with "I". Most cavalry regiments lack a "J" troop, for example.
    • Similarly still, military aircraft and other vehicles which serve long enough to have multiple design variants will skip the "I" model, hence the B-25 Mitchell going directly from the B-25H to the B-25J, due to the letter I resembling both the letter "J" and the number "1".
  • There was no 1983 Corvette. This is especially odd, as it was the model's 30th anniversary year. (Technically there were forty-four '83 prototypes, of which 43 were destroyed. The last is in the Corvette Museum.)
  • Whatever happened to the Aston Martin DB8?
  • The Samsung Note smartphone brand skipped from the Note 5 to the Note 7 to bring it in line with the Galaxy S7 product line, so that it didn't look like the Galaxy outstaged the Note. This massively backfired when the Note 7 had a complete recall due to multiple occasions of exploding and people got confused as to whether the Galaxy S7 or the Note 7 had the problem.
  • The iPhone skipped from 8 to X (Roman numeral 10). Oddly, in Apple's case the iPhone 8 and iPhone X were released at the same time.
    • One of the rumored names for the 2nd generation iPhone SE was the "iPhone 9", given that it replaced the iPhone 8 and has an almost identical design to it, but this was likely decided against as it includes faster internals than the iPhone X. It was released as the iPhone SE again, which is the same name as the iPhone 5S-based iPhone SE from four years prior.
    • Apple's line of systems-on-a-chip (SoCs) used in the iPhone and iPad started with the Apple A4; there never was an A1, A2, or A3. Presumably this was done to match the number of the iPhone it launched in, the iPhone 4note .
  • Similar to the Apple example, the next operating system released by Microsoft after Windows 8 was named Windows 10.
  • Many tall buildings are known to have Missing Floors. Examples include Las Vegas hotels which skip the 13th floor entirely, and many government and supposedly privately owned buildings which allegedly have unnumbered floors with no elevator access. (Yet people who ride the elevators every day suspect something is up when it takes twice as long to go from, say, the 18th floor to the 19th as it does to go from the 17th to the 18th.). Many buildings in Asian countries where Four Is Death is in play will likewise skip the fourth floor.
  • After finishing Line 12, the Madrid Metro went on to build a Line 14.
    • Happens in many, many other transport systems as well. The Munich S-Bahn lines are numbered from S1 to S8, yet there are only seven lines. As of 2014, there is no S5. Until a couple of years ago, the missing line was the S3. There's no obvious explanation for either version.
    • The Buenos Aires underground lines, as of 2014, are each assigned a letter: A, B, C, D, E… and H.
  • Seal Team Six was given its numerical name in order to mislead Soviet intelligence into assuming that there were at least five more similar units.
  • The United States Navy has quite a few of these, where ship numbers for a given type will skip because a number was assigned but the ship was never built. In one case, CV-49 was the last carrier to see service until CV-59 was built nearly 10 years later (with the end of WW2 causing the cancellation of the intervening carriers).
  • On a similar note, certain articles that include listed amendments, like rule books, may remove certain articles entirely (without even leaving a notation of such) but leave their number places unused so references to other articles made later don't have to be changed by the numbers shifting around.
  • A practical joke: Get three pigs. Paint them each with a number; 1, 2 and 4. Release them somewhere public and watch the fun as people try desperately to find #3. This is sufficiently well-known to the point where people familiar with the prank can be caught by surprise when there are four pigs.
  • Following its explosion on the launchpad resulting in the death of all three astronauts, the American rocket test launch now designated Apollo 1 was given the code despite it being the third launch in the series (the first two were unmanned test flights; Apollo codes were originally only intended for manned missions to the moon.) The next launch in the series, being the fourth rocket, became Apollo 4, meaning there were never launches with the codes Apollo 2 or 3.
  • Due to a complicated series of events involving multiple numbering schemes, reschedulings, cancellations, and a tragic accident, there have never been any Space Shuttle missions designated as "STS-10", "STS-12", "STS-15", "STS-16", "STS-18", "STS-21", "STS-22", or "STS-29", either publicly or internally.Full explanation 
  • Not even the calendar is exempt from this. Upon announcing the transition from the Julian to the Gregorian Calendar in 1582, Pope Gregory XIII declared that the day following October 4 of that year would be October 15, essentially meaning that the days October 5-14, 1582 never existed. This was necessary because the problem with the Julian calendar was that its average year was too long, causing the calendar slowly fall behind the seasons, so skipping these 10 days was needed to correct this.
  • The two terminals at Toronto's Pearson International Airport are named Terminal 1 and Terminal 3. There used to be a Terminal 2, but it was demolished in 2007 to make room for an expansion to Terminal 1, and Terminal 3 kept its name to avoid confusion. However, the airport authorities have not precluded the possibility of a future terminal building using the Terminal 2 name.

Examples where the unmade installment was later made

  • SpyBoy originally had no issue 13. After the original run ended, a three-issue miniseries named Spyboy: The MANGA Affair was given the numbering #13.1, #13.2, #13.3.
  • Homestar Runner was originally missing Strong Bad Email #22 in the original order, going straight from 21 to 23. Many episodes later, an e-mail was put into the slot, referred to as "The Lost E-mail", and explained that it had been "banned in the UK" for making fun of the English.
    • Strong Bad showed the viewers the gang's homemade action movie, Dangeresque 2: This Time It's Not Dangeresque 1, almost a year before showing them Dangeresque 1: Dangeresque, Too?
  • Nerd to the 3rd, a podcast for That Guy with the Glasses hosted by Dr. Gonzo, the Cat, and Travis, skipped over its 18th episode. Its 18th episode was later released as 'The Lost Episode', in which they discussed the series finale of Lost with their guest Rollo T.
  • Starflyer 59 had a song called "Second Space Song" on their debut album. They wrote "Wherever You Go (First Space Song)" for the followup album, but it got cut and was only released on their Greatest Hits Album.
  • Bonus Stage episode 4 was originally a preview of projects the creator was working on, and didn't have an actual Bonus Stage cartoon, but between the season 5 finale "Fickle Nickel" and the season 6 premiere "Last Exit To Charismaville" it was replaced with a cartoon making several references to things happening after the original episode 4.
  • In Season 2 of Thomas & Friends, Percy talks about an incident in which he braved a flood. The story he refers to, "Percy's Promise", wouldn't be adapted until Season 3.
  • Nine Planets Without Intelligent Life originally skipped comic #69. Not because of the infamy of the number, but because what the artist had planned was too large and detailed (and unimportant to the plot) to be worth bothering with. After a long hiatus (during which time Pluto was demoted), he went back and made comic #69 an argument between the two protagonists over whether the solar system has nine planets or eight.
  • The sequel to Lakeview Cabin, Lakeview Cabin Collection, have parts III through VI, but there is noticeably no second installment for the Show Within a Show. Turns out to be a subversion, as a later update includes II as an epilogue for completing the other parts.
  • Back in 2000, the Yu-Gi-Oh! card game released a card called The Legendary Fisherman (originally used by Mako Tsunami in the original series). 15 years later, they came out with The Legendary Fisherman III, which was used by Trout in Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V. After that, The Legendary Fisherman II was released as a game-original card.
  • Paperinik New Adventures' issue 0/1 has a complex history. The first issues were numbered 0, 0/2 and 0/3, which convinced some readers there was an issue 0/1 they missed. After denying the issue's existence for a while, Paperinik included it in a "past issues" catalog as a joke (with a blank white cover). Eventually, they published it as one of the annual specials, with stories dealing with Paperinik's transition from his old life to his new one.
  • Gaston Lagaffe originally had no volume 5, because the comic switched to the A4 format from volume 6 onward and the first four A4 volumes are compilations from small-format books. A fifth volume was eventually made in 1986, four years after the fourteenth volume, containing previously unpublished strips.
  • Played for Laughs in 50 Ways to Die in Minecraft. Part 4 was originally skipped over and went ahead to Part 5. Part 4 was later added, with the in-universe explanation being that people were having literal flame wars over the joke.
  • For the longest time, the U-Bahn (subway) in Vienna, Austria, has lines U1, U2, U3, U4, and U6, because plans for the U5 were proposed in the 70s and 80s (when the system was being built initially), but none were approved. Construction on the U5 finally began in January 2021.
  • When San Jose International Airport opened up a second terminal on the premises in 1990, it was christened as Terminal A, with the original terminal being named Terminal C, skipping "Terminal B". However, an actual Terminal B was later built, and then opened in 2010.