We get that movies aren't real. If they were, this article wouldn't exist because we'd be busy trying to hang out with Batman. That doesn't stop people like us from demanding as much logical consistency as possible, because how can we enjoy stories about space vikings fighting irradiated musclemen if every little detail doesn't make complete sense? Well, every once in a while, the creators say, "Oh, you wanted an explanation for that little plot hole? Here you go, you joyless ding-dongs."
So as we examine the ridiculous ways movies and shows explained minor inconsistencies, let's keep one thing in mind: We asked for this. May the gods have mercy on our souls.
We all know the Star Wars saga has some bumpy plot elements, from Luke Skywalker keeping the surname of the dad he's supposedly being hidden from to Han Solo and Princess Leia naming their only child after some old hobo they knew for like five minutes. One random bone fans love to pick is the fact that Chewbacca doesn't get a medal like Han and Luke at the end of the first film.
Luckily, every gaffe in a Star Wars movie can either be fixed with computers or explained away in some kind of ancillary product. In this case, it's the latter. It turns out that multiple comics went out of their way to remedy Chewie's injustice. Back in 1980, even the Marvel Comics series that thought giant green bunny rabbits were super cool had enough common sense to realize the movie dropped the ball here. The comic introduced the idea that Chewie was given his medal after the ceremony, because of the embarrassing indignity Leia would have to endure standing on a table to put it around his neck.
Similarly, a more recent Chewbacca-centric comic confirmed that he got a medal, but explained that he didn't wear it because medals "clash" with his "warrior vibe" -- so he gives it away to some kid. Which is at least slightly less crappy than popping by the intergalactic pawn shop.
Looking back, Breaking Bad is the most relevant show of 2017 that just happened to have been made several years ago. It focuses on a guy who can't afford health care, is pissed off at the 1 percent, capitalizes on America's drug problem, and dies after a showdown with white supremacists. In one of the most famous moments from the show, after being denied entry to his family home, Walter White angrily hurls a pizza like he's the Ninja Turtles' van. It lands on the roof and sits there, mocking him.
It's such a memorable image that it ruined the lives of the owners of the real house, who had to deal with pizza-wasting fans to the point where they erected a pizza-blocking fence (the saddest words in the English language). The thing is, the scene doesn't even make any sense. For the physics of the action to work, the pizza can't be sliced. Otherwise, as showrunner Vince Gilligan put it, a "thrown, sliced pizza would come apart due to centrifugal force or angular momentum (or something like that)."
Because the show's writers couldn't leave this weird inconsistency in the Breaking Bad-verse alone, the following season included a scene that addressed this issue. When Jesse and his pals order pizza, he notes that none of the pizzas are cut. Unlike every pizza you've ever ordered, they each come in one obscenely big, un-sliced chunk.
Jesse's friend Badger claims that not cutting the pizza is that particular shop's signature "gimmick," claiming, "they don't cut their pizza" and then "pass the savings on to you."
Jesse points out that it really doesn't cost anything to cut a pizza, so none of this makes any sense -- but considering we live in a world wherein a major pizza chain tried to sell us hot-dog-stuffed crusts, we find it believable. Hopefully Better Call Saul will dedicate an entire season to exploring what the hell was going on at that pizza joint.
It may seem silly to quibble with the consistency of a movie about inanimate objects that sing to a woman imprisoned by a guy who looks like Teen Wolf on steroids, but here we are. Disney's classic Beauty And The Beast has kind of a confusing timeline. The opening scene explains that the Beast was a vain prince cursed by a magical beggar for refusing to let her crash in his palace. If unbroken, the curse will become permanent once the Beast turns 21 -- that way, he'll be stuck a beast forever, but can at least go get wasted in the village dive bar.
Later, in the musical number "Be Our Guest," Lumiere the candlestick sings that the curse has so far lasted for "ten years." But wait, doesn't that mean that the Beast was cursed when he was 11 at most? The portrait of the prince from before the curse looks older than that:
Now that we know how Disney musicals are made, it seems likely that this was a miscommunication between the lyricist and the screenwriters. But nevertheless, Disney valiantly tried to make sense of this timeline. In the straight-to-video movie Beauty And The Beast: The Enchanted Christmas, we get a flashback to the night the prince was cursed. And guess what? He's a bratty 11-year-old who's apparently in the middle of some awkward growth spurts. He spends the holiday berating his staff for their crappy Christmas gifts.
Then, when he turns away an old woman, she reveals herself to be an enchantress and totally curses this annoying kid. On Christmas. Like some kind of reverse Santa Claus.
Of course, this solves the time problem, but isn't that a little ... harsh? If every 11-year-old who was kind of a jerk got cursed, you'd expect Belle would live in a Planet Of The Apes-like village full of furry atrocities.
To save future generations from this aggravation, the recent live-action movie specifically showed us that the prince was an adult when he got cursed, and made sure the talking candelabra doesn't let slip any continuity-ruining lyrics.
Back To The Future was never the most realistic franchise (otherwise, we'd all have flying cars and hover boards that don't suck), but there's one inconsistency that has bothered fans for decades. We all know that Marty McFly used to hang out in Doc Brown's laboratory/shack next to a Burger King dumpster. It looks like this:
However, when Doc unveils the time-travelling DeLorean, Marty doesn't know anything about it. Which brings us a problem: Where was Doc working on his time machine? With Marty preferring hanging around a senior citizen's bachelor pad to experimenting with sex and drugs like a normal teenager, he would have surely been around when Doc was tinkering with his invention. It's kinda hard to miss the big car in your friend's living room.
Screenwriter Bob Gale realized this, but not until 30 years later. Rather than ignore this cock-up and move on with his life, Gale attempted to tie up loose ends with the Back To The Future comic series. The story finds Marty searching for a missing Doc, when his girlfriend Jennifer points out that the events of the movie don't make any sense:
It turns out Doc had a second lab he'd never mentioned to Marty before. They eventually find this other lab, which is full of security and a sign reading: "Keyp Out." Yes, Doc can crack the intricacies of the space time continuum, but wrestles with basic spelling.
Unfortunately, after breaking in, Marty trips the alarm, which leads to the cops being called, which then leads to Marty becoming a fugitive ...
... paving the way for a future comic in which it's revealed that exposure to the flux capacitor causes severe brain damage.
The backstory of The Matrix was always kind of confusing. Humans lost a war to machines, but were kept alive in virtual reality as a power source? There are much better power sources than human beings, not to mention the fact that it probably took a hell of a lot of power to run that damn Matrix itself. Morpheus mentions that the machines discovered "fusion" power, so why use humans at all? Plus, if the robots were so evil, why did they give humans a simulated world that seemed kind of nice? Why not force them into a digital DMV waiting line for all eternity?
Luckily for curious sticklers, between movies, the Wachowskis released The Animatrix, an anthology of animated short films set in the Matrix universe. One such short gave us the backstory of the robot uprising, and it turns out that, unlike those Skynet jerks, these robots are quite sympathetic. In fact, in what is likely not a surprise to anyone who's ever read a YouTube comment section, it's the humans who suck.
In the future, everyone has robot servants, but we treat them like crap. After years of being abused and disposed of, the robots eventually start their own robot country, and only want to live in peace. They even try to join the United Nations, cheerfully addressing the council in a tie and a top hat, but are promptly thrown out.
After they won the ensuing wars, the robots were left with the remnants of humanity, and incorporated them into a symbiotic relationship -- not because they needed their power necessarily, but because they wanted to live with the humans, not launch a genocide. So the Matrix was less about harvesting humans and more about finding somewhere to stick them where they couldn't bother anybody.
Other than the fact that it's the only movie in which Captain Kirk uses a Beastie Boys song to battle his enemies, the most famous thing to come out of Star Trek Beyond was the revelation that Sulu is gay, with a husband and daughter whom we guess he never gets to see.
While it's great to see the Trek franchise is still trying to be progressive after 50 years, there are some problems with this. It seems like a nod to George Takei, the actor who originated the role, who is gay. But Takei wasn't thrilled about this. Why? Because he's an actor. The Enterprise crew doesn't have to reflect their real-life counterparts; otherwise, Captain Kirk would just be confused and mean all the time.
The part Takei played for decades wasn't gay, and as we all know, Sulu originally had a daughter who was born after he had a one-night stand with a "glamazon" in the book The Captain's Daughter. Takei further elaborated that she was a "very athletic, powerful and stunningly gorgeous woman."
The new Star Trek movies take place in the same universe as the old ones, but in a different timeline (created after some pesky Romulans traveled back in time and blew up Kirk's dad). Problem is, the timeline deviated after Sulu was already born. So this either means that when you watch The Wrath Of Khan, Sulu is presumably unhappy and closeted, or that this new reality somehow made Sulu gay. To suggest that Sulu's sexual orientation was modified by the events of the reboot is to suggest that gay people aren't born that way, which is a very un-Star Trek position to take.
After wading into the sea of crap that is messing around with Trek continuity, famed English person and Beyond screenwriter Simon Pegg had to pen a lengthy blog post trying to make sense of this. Pegg's post alleges that, OK, Sulu wasn't gay in the original series (hence all the glamazon love), but he did become gay because of Romulan time travel in the reboot ... because of quantum physics, you see.
Pegg explains that even though the timeline diverged after Sulu was born, time is "not linear," adding that "we experience time as a contiguous series of cascading events but perception and reality aren't always the same thing." Meaning that the rift in spacetime rippled like a pond, affecting not only what came afterwards, but also everything that came before. Including changing people's sexual orientations, and presumably making the Beastie Boys the Mozarts of the 23rd century.
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