TV Shows/Movies with serious problems in their chronology

Every soap has done The Kid Trick: A woman is pregnant for 19 months before giving birth to a premature baby (usually in a cabin in a snowstorm). In one year the child is walking and talking. In two years the child gets hit by a bus on the way home from school. At three years the child is shipped off to boarding school/shipped off to thes relatives/playing with the child who lives across the street. At four years the child is having a first adolescent affair, and at five years the girl/girlfriend is pregnant, starting the whole trick all over again.

Soaps also have people who disappear and are never mentioned for years. Then one week seven people mention them, and the next week they show up.

Then we have the Soap Period Of Mourning (SPOM).

Half the neighbourhood is wiped out by a nuclear holocaust and two weeks later the bereaved wives/husbands/girlfriends are shagging each other like rabbits as if nothing had ever happened.

Soaps also have the Family From Nowhere. I watched Days of Our Lifes for 10 years before Officer Roman Brady was assigned to protect Dr. Marlena Evans from a stalker. A month later there was a whole family of Bradys coming out of the woodwork. They even owned “Brady’s Pub” a popular meeting place that had never been mentioned before.

Where were all those Bradys hiding for ten years?

The Legend of Zorro (The more recent of the two Antonio Banderas Zorro movies) was surely not intended to be a history lesson for anybody, but oh my God! President Lincoln shows up in person to welcome the new state of California into the Union. Okay, California was admitted in, what, 1851? Lincoln’s first inauguration was ten years later. What, they couldn’t find an actor who looked like James K. Polk?

The Bold and the Beautiful. When it started running in 1987, Eric and Stephanie had been married for thirty years. Eric has several sons, among them “little Eric”, born during the course of the series. Eric has a son, Deacon, who also has a son. But it’s still thirty years since Eric and Stephanie got married.

Upstairs, Downstairs has some interesting anomalies, mostly due to the fact that the series spans nearly 30 years (from 1903 to 1929) during its 5-year run. This means that some of the characters who were there for the whole run look too mature at one end of the series and too young at the other.

Rose, for example. Dialog establishes that she has been working for the Bellamies since they first married, which makes her approximately 20 years older than their children, who are in their late teens/early twenties in the early episodes. So, let’s say she’s in her late 30’s in the early episodes, and therefore should be pushing 70 by the end–but she still looks 40-ish in the 1920s!

Rose also has the misfortune to lose two different fiances due to war–in the early episodes, she tells Elizabeth that her young man was killed in the Boer War; later on, during WWI, this is all played out again with Gregory Willmot… but at that time, Rose never mentions that the same thing happened to her before.

In the early episodes, Mrs. Bridges is obviously a widow and even refers to her late husband as “Bridges.” Later on, she has never been married and the “Mrs.” is said to be an honorific.

Also, I am amused to note that the series goes through 1908 twice.

In **Rocky IV ** two story arcs take place supposedly comtemporaneously. One, Rocky’s son starts at a new school and is beaten up on a regular basis by the school bully until he learns to defend himself and turns the tables and beats up the bully. In the second story arc, Rocky finds a new boxer, trains him, manages several of his fights, and then watches as the fighter fights for the world championship. His son’s beating of the bully presumably takes place a few weeks after the school opens, certainly by the end of the semester. The boxer’s championship fight takes place at the same time. No way Rocky could have trained, managed several fights, and done all the other things he does by the end of the semester.

This is actually all the same episode. The end is the camp watching newsreel footage in which the SHRTW appears.

There is a Burns-era episode in which Hawkeye and B.J. fake a baseball game radio broadcast to foil a betting cheating plot by BUrns but I don’t know if that involves an actual historical game.

The Showtime series “The Tudors” apparently has some chronology problems, not the least of which is the casting of Johnathan Rhys-Meyers as Henry VIII. He’s a decade or so too young to be portraying Henry at the age he should be for the events depicted. I don’t know enough about the history to be bothered by it but a couple of Dopers have been so annoyed that they quit watching the show.

I don’t know what movie you are thinking of, but that is not Rocky IV, in which Ivan “Death from Above” Drago kills Apollo “I Should Have Stayed Retired” Creed, trains under the watchful eye of Brigitte “Later on I Get Some Sweet Flavor Flav Lovin’” Nielsen, and eventually gets his CCCP-authorized clock cleaned by the Italian Stallion.

Maybe you meant Rocky VI?

Or perhaps the more correct Rocky V

Never saw either one, so I was guessing it was a Roman numeral arithmetic problem.

After they killed off Apollo, I just couldn’t give a damn about the series any more.

Often 20 years younger than when they were last seen 10 years before.

Soaps are in their own universe of course, but I think that Alice Horton on Days of Our Lives, due to the accelerated puberty experiments, is a great-great-great-great-grandmother. Her gggg grandkids just call her “Grandma Alice” so the viewers will forget how many generations have prematurely aged.

Not relevant to the topic, but one of my favorite things about soap kids is how self-reliant they are. They never need a babysitter or even longterm childcare if their parents (usually a single parent because mom was killed in that volcano last year [though her body was never found]) fall in bed with a new lover and spend the night, and somehow the kid can fend for itself if dad has to hop a plane to Monte Carlo (which he can do on a single-parent bartender’s income) to find out if supervillain is holding their mother with her new face hostage. So it’s understandable why they grow up so fast: they have to.

Also with Rocky 4/5. When Rocky goes to Russia to train to fight Ivan Drago, his son is shown to be maybe 4 or 5. When he returns from Russia at the begining of the next film his son is about 6 years older. Now I’d be totally fine with this- I’d just assume Rocky was training for years to beat the man that killed his friend… but in the fight at the end of Rocky 4, I believe there’s a shot of Adrian and the very young boy watching (or listening to- I can’t remember) the fight.

I hate to say it, but Firefly/Serneity.

The civil war and the first appearance of the Reavers both happen about twelve years before the show begins. Yet everyone treats the Reavers as ancient myth-like creatures that have always been around. Even though Mal, Zoe, Wash, Jayne and Book would have been “big, damn adults” when the Reavers first appeared.

It is also implied several times in the show that the origin of the Reavers involved “men reaching the edge of space and then going mad” even though colonization was taking place for decades before the Reavers first appearance (per Serenity).

Well, when the actual Reavers were first encountered, they could’ve been associated with a pre-existing myth and given the same name.

Man, I love Firefly fanwanking. It goes to such great lengths to describe all of the various aspects of the 'verse that Whedon and company didn’t get time to properly flesh out.

No different that Star Wars, Star Trek, or really any other fanwanking. It’s just one of the more recent ones, is all.

Sort of related to this thread:

Last night, Mrs. Know and I are watching George Lopez (don’t ask–there wasn’t anything else on). In one scene, George is watching Sportscenter and the voice from the TV says:

“The Toronto Blue Jays today announced that they will be without the services of pitcher Jim Clancy due to recurring elbow problems…”

Clancy retired from baseball about 15 years ago. :confused:

My comment was, “No wonder he’s got elbow problems; he’s got to be 50 by now!” :smiley:

And for anyone who saw the show, it wasn’t one of the flashback scenes.

But at the end of the episode before the one where Potter arrives (I believe it’s BJ’s first episode) it’s explicitly stated that Potter arrived in 1952.

A co-worker from Pittsburgh used to watch Queer as Folk and comment on the newsstands- they sold an independent paper from P’burgh that had gone out of business years before. The producers had evidently bought the former racks and advertisements to disguise the Toronto location. (Not related to time, but he also used to laugh at the P’burgh gay scene as portrayed in QaF: while P’burgh like any large city has a gay community, it consists of a couple of bars and some neighborhoods with larger-than-average gay percentile but nothing like the whole Queer Ghetto of the TV show.)