Spiny Norman

1st Sep 2020

Gladiator (2000)

Continuity mistake: When Lucius descends the stairs to greet his mother and Commodus, there is a brief close-up sideways which shows, behind them, a banner, and two stones with hieroglyphs. There are in fact several Egyptian obelisks in Rome, that were taken there in antiquity. The only trouble is, it doesn't match with the long shot at all. (Commentary track confirms this was not shot on one existing location - only the four top steps of the stairs were really there). (00:57:31)

Spiny Norman

1st Sep 2020

Gladiator (2000)

Visible crew/equipment: When Commodus enters Rome in triumph, he descends from his chariot to mount the stairs. A group of children with flowers rise. At the extreme right, modern scaffolding is visible for a half a second. (00:57:28)

Spiny Norman

1st Sep 2020

Gladiator (2000)

Revealing mistake: In the shot of the discussion (literally) over the dead body of Marcus Aurelius (horizontal in the foreground), the "corpse" is still breathing. His belly is rising slowly up and down.

Spiny Norman

Question: In the first half of the movie, the problem that needs to be solved is where the known route starts. Indy finds out when he finds the second, complete shield in Venice and deciphers it later. When exactly do the Nazis find out? He has told Marcus Brody, but not Elsa, because he does not fully trust her. The Nazis find the diary, but not the rubbing. They don't "extract" the information from the Joneses when they are captured in Austria, at which time Indy confidently states that Marcus has a two day head start (unless the Nazis know something that Indy doesn't). But they are already waiting for him in Iskenderun when he arrives. (No indication is ever given that Marcus is being followed in Venice; at any rate, no-one pays much attention to him, because all eyes are on Indy.) When and how do the Nazis discover where to go?

Spiny Norman

Answer: They don't know Alexandretta is the city when they set out to capture Brody; he travels to Iskenderun (modern Alexandretta) himself, and the Nazis capture him there. They probably sent his description, and orders to capture him, to all their agents in Hatay (whose leader is sympathetic); as we see, Brody is very easy to spot, and naïve enough to be captured with relative ease (he also contacts Sallah in advance of going there, leaving a further trail). At that point, it's not difficult for them to deduce that the starting point on the map is the city that Brody has traveled to.

No, I'm sorry, but that second reply makes very little sense. Sure we can speculate that his phone call to Sallah was tapped. But speculation is not good enough. And there's no indication at all that Brody was being followed. In fact he's all but ignored. The idea that at every train station there would be nazi agents waiting is a bit impractical. Hatay is perhaps small enough to do that, but then we're just renaming the problem: how did the nazis know to go there, and not Syria, or Palestine, or Istanbul, or any other place once visited by crusaders? They can't watch out for every scholarly type in every train station in the entire Middle East.

Spiny Norman

Answer: They capture Max Brody with the map shortly after they capture the Jones'. They learned through him.

lionhead

And WHERE do they capture him...? Right. So that's not it.

Spiny Norman

When wandering around Egypt alone with the map, Brody meets up with Sallah who tries to prevent him from being captured. He fails by accidentally leading him into a nazi controlled truck that takes him away and into the hands of Donovan. They have the map then.

lionhead

Brody is not "wondering around Egypt." We explicitly hear Indy instruct Salah and him to meet in Iskenderun before he left for Austria and that is where Brody descends from the train station. Or am I to believe, again, that the nazis have camouflaged truck traps in every town in the entire Middle East, just in case? No, they intercept Brody because they know where he's going to be. (Iskenderun, by the way, is nowhere near Egypt, it's not even on the same continent. I suggest you re-watch the relevant bit of the movie first).

Spiny Norman

28th Sep 2019

Goodbye Again (1968)

Episode #1.3 - S1-E3

Factual error: In the Scarlet Pimpernel sketch, the opening caption reads "France, 1778." This is the Scarlet Pimpernel who rescues people during the "Reign of Terror", as is confirmed several times during the sketch. But the French Revolution was still eleven years away and its Reign of Terror wouldn't start until 1793.

Spiny Norman

26th Jun 2019

Good Omens (2019)

Hard Times - S1-E3

Factual error: Aziraphale cites the only prophecy from Agnes Nutter that he could find as one for 1972, "do not buy Betamax" (a reference to the home video format war). Betamax was only launched in 1975 starting in Japan, so this advice wouldn't be of any use until 1976. (And these prophecies were completely, even ludicrously accurate, so that excludes any explanation that she was simply a few years off, because she was never wrong). (00:19:10)

Spiny Norman

Show generally

Other mistake: When the throne in episode 5 & 6 is first introduced it is a normal throne or chair; it doesn't move when merely touched. But once the ceremony starts and after it's finished, it's suddenly a swivel chair. The base is never shown of course. But a swivel chair made of solid rock...?

Spiny Norman

Mind My Maharajah - S3-E2

Continuity mistake: During the snooker game, while they are discussing the wager over the sergeant major's next shot, the maharajah has quietly flipped a cover over one pocket of the table. His servant puts the same lid on the same hole again (it is the same pocket, in between Gloria and the two officers). The chair in the background also appears to have moved a bit to the left. (00:18:30)

Spiny Norman

19th Feb 2019

The ABC Murders (2018)

Show generally

Continuity mistake: The only letter that Alexander B. Cust really wrote himself is briefly shown when Poirot visits the office of the Twinkle Toes stocking company. The lowercase "R" is too high every time (meaning that the typewriter isn't perfect, a detail put in for realism). Yet all the close-ups of a typewriter progressing through the work on that letter, or any of the letters written on the same machine, show a perfectly aligned "r."

Spiny Norman

Show generally

Factual error: The forces of Cassiopeia all sport the crown-like "W" sign which is the shape of that constellation... but only as seen from earth! These five points in three-dimensional space (like all star signs named after anything) look like that when viewed from our own planet; but from anywhere else, they aren't shaped like that at all. Why would they chose to see themselves through a very specific angle of view from some other distant planet (earth)?

Spiny Norman

Royal Jelly - S2-E1

Plot hole: It's all very well for Albert to humm "bzz-bzz" to indicate that he has been eating too much Royal Jelly and is no longer entirely human. But "bzz" is just the noise of bees flying, it's not a sound that they deliberately produce. It makes no sense to SAY "bzz." Suppose he was turning into a horse instead, then he might say "Whinny!", but he wouldn't say "Clip clop clip clop."

Spiny Norman

10th Jul 2018

Plebs (2013)

The Marathon - S4-E3

Plot hole: Jason cheated in three different ways in order to beat Aurelius in The Marathon, and admitted it. So the bet that they made between them is null and void. But the last shot shows them living up to the terms, which includes Aurelius starting to eat his own shit (literally), so revolted that he's trembling. Apparently the writers really really wanted to include coprophagy. But who would eat faeces for a bet, if you can simply avoid it by reminding your opponent that he cheated? Or even better, many would say that cheating means losing automatically, so he's the one who should be eating his own shit.

Spiny Norman

Black Blood - S1-E1

Other mistake: All the Greek name variants are used over the Latin ones - including even "Odysseus" over the more familiar "Ulysses" (who is the same person). However when the story of Actaeon comes up, it's suddenly the goddess "Diana" that he saw. But all the gods have their Greek names, so that should be "Artemis." (As indeed is used in episode 2). (00:39:35)

Spiny Norman

3rd Nov 2017

Doctor Who (1963)

The Creature from the Pit - S17-E3

Plot hole: In part 2 it's brought up in conversation several times that all metal is rare on that planet. Handy exposition for the viewers, but it's in fact a really odd thing for the characters to say. The inhabitants aren't giving a tour of their planet (certainly not deliberately at any rate), so why would they state facts that have been well known to them all of their lives? It's a bit like meeting strangers and informing them that two thirds of the Earth are covered by oceans.

Spiny Norman

29th Oct 2017

Love Actually (2003)

Factual error: The place where Jamie is writing his novel is revealed to be Marseilles, France, when he flies back to propose. In the first part of their story, it might have been Portugal; his housekeeper spoke French, which is a common second language in that country; and Aurelia only spoke Portuguese. Yet in the entire second part, no-one speaks any French at all; only Portuguese and a few words of English. Sure enough there are many Portuguese families living in France; but they do not have their own linguistic enclave in Marseilles, and any generation growing up there would have learnt French as well. Either the language or the airport name are wrong.

Spiny Norman

22nd Oct 2017

Atlantis (2013)

The Queen Must Die - S2-E12

Factual error: In the last minutes, the show looks forward to future challenges, in effect a preview of the never-made 3rd series. The oracle says they must find "the golden fleece, woven long ago by the Stygian witches." But the golden fleece, or indeed any fleece, is not a woven fabric. (Today's fleece is a modern invention).

Spiny Norman

Sucker Bait - S1-E7

Factual error: It is quite true that atoms that do not occur naturally are bad for humans. However, in a space age as this story's, that would apply to most or even all planets. It would be a well known risk that didn't require an abnormal specialist to diagnose. (This fact rarely figures in other SF, because it would severely limit most stories).

Spiny Norman

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