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Nightmare Fuel / Memphis Belle

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  • Lead plane C-Cup's navigator (or the bombardier) falling out of the plane when an Me-109 shoots out the nose.
    Phil Lowenthal: Oh God ... He doesn't have a parachute!
  • Danny listening on the radio as the rookie crew of the Mother and Country, bisected by a falling Me-109, scream for their mothers all the way down until they fade out of range. Even worse that the radio squelch almost sounds like screaming itself, right before Danny turns off the radio. Somehow, the revelation that only two survivors managed to parachute from the doomed craft made it worse.
    • Even worse, two of the crew never even knew what hit them... since the Bf-109's wing hit RIGHT AT THE WAIST GUNS. Meanwhile the Ball Turret gunner more then likely never had a chance to even escape the plane.
    • It's especially bad for Luke because he was the one who shot down the fighter that crashed into Mother and Country.
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    • Amazingly, there was a B-17 that survived a collision like that. On February 1st 1943, B-17F tail number 41-24406, All American, of the 97th Bombardment Group (Heavy) collided with a Bf-109 after bombing Tunis Harbor in support of the campaign against Rommel's Afrikakorps. The fighter tore through most of the B-17's fuselage, severed half of the control cables, sheared off the left horizontal stabilizer, and trapped the tail gunner in his seatnote . 1st Lt. Kenny Bragg and his copilot miraculously kept the bomber under control and nursed her back to their airfield at Biskra, Algeria, 90 minutes' flight time away, where they landed safely, with no casualties among the 10-man crew. Made of Iron indeed.
  • The footage of the real bombers being shot out of the sky, by Luftwaffe gun cameras, while letters of condolence are read in the background. These are real letters, though they are to the families of RAF rather than USAAF aircrews, since the latter destroyed their file copies of such letters after the war. More than any special effect, a reminder of what the war cost those bomber crews, who were actually more likely to become casualties than the infantry.
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  • The explosion of Windy City right in Belle's path, and the blood and gore smeared over the nose.
    "Oh God! Somebody's guts are all over the nose!"
  • While it's played for a bit of (morbid) humor, the exploding can of tomato soup really does look like a significant part of either Dennis or Luke had just been blasted across the cockpit.
  • Rascal literally getting his turret shot out from under him, leaving him dangling from the underside of the plane, several thousand feet in air, with nothing but his safety strap keeping him from falling would be especially terrifying. His screams got even louder when said strap was undone and the only thing keeping him from falling was his grip on the plane, even though he was safely recovered (ironically by the crew-mate he constantly teased).
    • The ball-turret gunner was simultaneously the best-protected and most-vulnerable member of the crew, hanging out of the belly of the plane in an armored sphere. Of course, that armor was only really good against rifle-caliber bullets. Explosive 20mm cannon shells resulted in the gunner's remains having to be rinsed out of his turret with a hose. There also wasn't enough room for even the smallest gunner to wear his parachute inside. If that's not enough, the turret could only be accessed if it was rotated straight down, bringing the hatch inside the plane. If the turret jammed due to battle damage or mechanical fault, the gunner would be trapped inside. On at least one occasion, a B-17 with its landing gear shot off had to make a belly landing with a jammed ball turret. The poor bastard inside knew he was going to be crushed to death, and there was nothing he or any of his buddies could do about it—several members of his crew had to be removed from flight status afterwards as they were emotionally unable to keep flying. In another case, a badly-damaged B-17 in similar condition orbited their home airfield while the flight engineer and gunners frantically worked wrenches to dismount the jammed turret, hoping that the man inside might at least have a chance that way. The turret was released at low altitude over a freshly-plowed field, and the gunner miraculously walked away. His plane then crashed and burned on landing, killing the other nine men aboard.

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