Unearthing The Garbage: Santa Paws

Revisiting the Collective: Great Works of Fiction with Giant Plot Holes


(CS: I've become less and less concerned with plot holes the longer that I've been writing about pop culture. As someone who writes stories, I feel the level a plot hole bothers a viewer or reader says more about their lack of imagination than issues with the creation. But I ended up writing about plot holes a lot in my Collective Publishing columns because they were really popular with the readers. I believe this was the first time that I did it, and it was originally posted in the summer of 2012, so very early in my time writing for them.)

It is the internet. I write on pop culture. If I don’t devote an entire article to plot holes then I’ll be banned from watching TV and movies for the rest of my life. These are the rules. So, here are some classic works of fiction that are dearly loved, but contain some rather mind draining plot holes. (CS: Plot hole articles were crazy popular on the internet around this time, but they don't seem to be as much of a thing now.) 

Yes, there are spoilers. (CS: I had a few readers who sent me angry comments because I 'spoiled' something that was probably already years old, so I learned to put this warning on everything even if a piece about plot holes would make you think that of course spoilers would be contained.)

Sixth Sense: It was a mind blowing twist ending when it was revealed that Dr. Malcolm Crowe had been dead the whole time and only Cole Sear was able to see him. This now leaves us with a question of what the heck did Crowe do for the last several months? Yes, Crowe was convinced he had marriage problems, but didn’t he find it a little harsh that his wife never even acknowledged his presence after the shooting? Didn’t he start to get a little annoyed every time the cashier screamed and ran away when he tried to purchase a tub of ice cream? More importantly, how in the world did he land a pre-teen boy as his client to begin with? Is it typical practice for psychiatrists to just come up to young children on the street and ask them if they want counseling? I’d have thought the profession would frown upon such things. (CS: After rewatching this for The Movie Breakdown, I'd say the movie does a pretty decent job of explaining why Crowe was oblivious to things and why Cole started hanging around him.) 

Friends: In the premiere episode, Chandler is introduced to Rachel as if they had never met before. The next season, the gang watched an old prom video where Monica is overweight and Rachel is pre-nose job. Chandler is shocked by their appearance and gives every impression this is the first time he’d known Monica was once fat and Rachel has a huge honker. A few seasons later, there is a flashback episode where Chandler goes to the Gellar’s home for Thanksgiving, and both an overweight Monica and a big nosed Rachel are in attendance. In another flashback episode, Chandler meets and then tries to sleep with Rachel a year before what would be the time period of the premiere episode. It appears either Chandler made it a habit of jumping head first into brick walls or he just had one of the worst memories known to man. (CS: Retconning characters' history and traits is a rule for all long-running sitcoms.) 

Robin Crusoe: I’m sure many of you had either read or had read to you this classic novel. But I am also sure almost all of you don’t remember the gruesome scene where Crusoe sews some cloth right on his hips. Now, this is because it doesn’t exist. Yet, there is a scene where Crusoe takes off all his clothes and swims to a nearby ship. He then proceeds to fill his pockets with biscuits. Now, it sure makes sense to stock up on goods, but it isn’t healthy to have pockets made out of your bare flesh. (CS: As someone who has written some long-form stories, I've made some bigger brain farts than forgetting a guy is naked.) 

Happy Days: Big brother Chuck Cunningham went upstairs to his bedroom during the second season and he never ever came down again. Not only that, but his family and all their friends forgot he ever existed to the point they believed the Cunningham family only had two kids. It seems there must have been a nasty vortex waiting in his room that erased him from existence. The sibling gobbling vortex then moved on to such shows as Family Matters, That ‘70s Show, Boy Meets World, and Saved by the Bell. (CS: I've always wondered why these sitcoms tried to erase siblings from history rather than just saying they went off to college or are just playing at their friends forever. Also, apparently the reason Chuck was erased was due to the popularity of The Fonz who replaced him as the big brother mentor role.) 

Carrie: In the novel version, we’re told Carrie’s father died seven months before she was born. It is too bad, because he likely would have protected her form her abusive mother and the cruel classmates. How do I know he would have protected her? Well, there is passage where he stops his wife from killing an infant Carrie while she is performing telekinesis. Wait. . . he stopped his wife from killing his daughter after being dead for 7 months? Apparently, there was a very little known and underdeveloped zombie storyline in the novel. (CS: I'll have to re-read the novel, but a quick Google search makes no mention of this plot hole. I wonder if it was an initial print run issue.) 

Toy Story: Buzz Lightyear doesn’t believe he is a toy. He actually thinks he is the character his toy is depicting, and believes he is on some intergalactic mission. Despite the fact he insists he isn’t a toy, he stays completely still just like all the other toys when a human enters the room. You’d also think he’d had been rather traumatized when he was boxed in the store and surrounded by a bunch of “clone” Buzz Lightyears. For a guy who is convinced he isn’t a toy, he does a fine job acting like all the other toys in Andy’s room. (CS: And now we are getting a movie about the Lightyear that the toy was based on.)  Of course, if a giant that was 20 times my height barged towards me and then picked me up, my first inclination probably wouldn’t be to strike up a conversation either.

(CS: You can tell this was an early column for the site, because I did not end with my question to try to garner comments and engagement.)

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