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TV Tropes Monday: Just Plane Wrong



Tweet of the Day: Emotional Wound Entry: Being Bullied

War is a common themes in media. Afterall nothing else packs the conflict, high stakes and drama to fuel a successful franchise or intellectual property like war. However, there is a tendency for artists, even those with military backgrounds to, well, get things Just Plane Wrong. It often means that the representation of military hardware is less than accurate for a variety of reasons.

Military hardware is, by definition, hard to come by. Most countries don’t hand over F-22 fighters, M1A tanks or missile armed cruisers to just about anyone which means getting a hold of reliable substitutes is rather difficult for film makers on a budget. So they make due with whatever happens to be available which can look terrible if you know what to look for. Then you have the Rule of Cool which tends to lead designers to stick as many guns, missiles and other cool doodads on an airframe or even use features of an aircraft as weapons making anyone with passing knowledge of the design wince. And even if the artist does the research, the research can be overwhelming. Multiple sources contradict each other and tend to repeat false information. Did you know there were 24 marks or version of the famous Spitfire? That doesn’t cover field modifications, experimental versions or the less famous naval version the Seafire.

Of course you can always ask the Pentagon for help (or your national equivalent) if you don’t mind a handful of military officers reviewing your script for “errors” that might make the military look bad.


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