#1 Posted by BraveToaster (12590 posts) -

As we all know, consistency is an important aspect to storytelling. How inconsistent does a story have to be before you lose interest altogether? Have you identified major inconsistencies that few people have noticed?

For instance, last week I was watching a show about a Catholic priest who is also one of the best exorcists in England. In the first episode, someone asks if demons can read minds. He states that demons are not capable of reading minds, but they can witness certain acts that people assume are away from peering eyes. In the very next episode, there is a demon possessed man running around and shanking people who kills the priest's protege'. A police officer who is assigned to this particular case has a few conversations with the priest. Of course, the priest does not believe the whole demon possession deal, so she has a ton of questions. She finally asks if he can beat the demon possessed serial killer, and he answers, "how can you defeat an enemy who can read your mind?" At that point, I really had no desire to continue watching the series.

#2 Edited by Toxeia (729 posts) -

I imagine that a story with inconsistencies that would break your interest is so poorly written to begin with it's not worth the time. I can't think of anything where I've decided to kick it because of a hole in the plot or some kind of flip-flop in the story, but there are plenty of literature and films that I can't stomach due to poor writing.

#3 Posted by Jay444111 (2441 posts) -

Heroes season 2 and peters girlfriend literally being ERASED from existence with no hope of coming back...

Actually... Heroes season 2 in general.

#4 Posted by DanteFaustEsq (109 posts) -

@Jay444111 said:

Actually... Heroes in general.

There we go, fixed that for ya.

#5 Edited by MrKlorox (11209 posts) -

Oh it's British? Then just stick out the remaining four episodes and forget you ever watched it. I hate British TV because the seasons (inappropriately named "series") are waaay too short, and entire shows (which should be called "series") often don't last long enough for you to build a relationship with the characters and usually end without any closure. With few exceptions.
 
@Jay444111 said:

Heroes season 2 and peters girlfriend literally being ERASED from existence with no hope of coming back...

Actually... Heroes season 2 in general.

No, the entirety of Heroes was a series of huge plot holes and dangling story threads. The earlier seasons actually seemed like they were trying to go somewhere with it.
#6 Posted by FourWude (2261 posts) -

Inconsistencies in story is what killed Scooby Doo for me.

#7 Posted by Jay444111 (2441 posts) -

@MrKlorox said:

@Jay444111 said:

Heroes season 2 and peters girlfriend literally being ERASED from existence with no hope of coming back...

Actually... Heroes season 2 in general.

No, the entirety of Heroes was a series of huge plot holes and dangling story threads. The earlier seasons actually seemed like they were trying to go somewhere with it.

I actually meant that there is when the insanity and the plot holes started. That is what I meant to say. But seriously, Peter erased a girl from existence and then forgets about her... WTF.

#8 Posted by MarkWahlberg (4585 posts) -

I'd get plenty bothered by something like that, but I'd only stop watching if it directly impacted how the story progressed. Although if I still like where they end up going, or if I think they've earned a second chance... I dunno. I stuck through with all of LOST, partly because I was hooked real bad, but also because they managed to keep the inconsistencies to the stuff I didn't usually care about. If that makes sense.

#9 Posted by oraknabo (1453 posts) -

I think if you're going to explicitly state the rules of your fictional universe like that, you have to be bound by them or come up with a pretty clever justification when you break them later. The fact that the series has different writers for each show isn't an excuse either, because there should be a story editor looking out and keeping track of all of that stuff. Even with a lot of editors though, comics based on universes and continuity have this problem all of the time, but in their favor, they're juggling a hell of a lot more than a few episodes a season.

#10 Posted by Jay444111 (2441 posts) -

@oraknabo said:

I think if you're going to explicitly state the rules of your fictional universe like that, you have to be bound by them or come up with a pretty clever justification when you break them later. The fact that the series has different writers for each show isn't an excuse either, because there should be a story editor looking out and keeping track of all of that stuff. Even with a lot of editors though, comics based on universes and continuity have this problem all of the time, but in their favor, they're juggling a hell of a lot more than a few episodes a season.

This is a reason I refuse to even TOUCH a single comic book outside of Walking Dead or Dark Tower. The amount of retcons and bullshit plot holes is IMMENSE in comic books. I mean, come on, finish a character and then retire him! It is that fucking easy!

#11 Posted by BraveToaster (12590 posts) -

@oraknabo said:

I think if you're going to explicitly state the rules of your fictional universe like that, you have to be bound by them or come up with a pretty clever justification when you break them later. The fact that the series has different writers for each show isn't an excuse either, because there should be a story editor looking out and keeping track of all of that stuff. Even with a lot of editors though, comics based on universes and continuity have this problem all of the time, but in their favor, they're juggling a hell of a lot more than a few episodes a season.

I agree with you. Breaking a set of rules established in a story's universe bothers me. I don't want to stick around when a major inconsistencies appear so early in a story.

@MarkWahlberg said:

I'd get plenty bothered by something like that, but I'd only stop watching if it directly impacted how the story progressed. Although if I still like where they end up going, or if I think they've earned a second chance... I dunno. I stuck through with all of LOST, partly because I was hooked real bad, but also because they managed to keep the inconsistencies to the stuff I didn't usually care about. If that makes sense.

That does make sense. There are some stories with minor inconsistencies, but everything else is so good that you overlook them. Other stories are just shitty.

#12 Posted by MikeGosot (3227 posts) -

 @Jay444111 said:

@oraknabo said:

I think if you're going to explicitly state the rules of your fictional universe like that, you have to be bound by them or come up with a pretty clever justification when you break them later. The fact that the series has different writers for each show isn't an excuse either, because there should be a story editor looking out and keeping track of all of that stuff. Even with a lot of editors though, comics based on universes and continuity have this problem all of the time, but in their favor, they're juggling a hell of a lot more than a few episodes a season.

This is a reason I refuse to even TOUCH a single comic book outside of Walking Dead or Dark Tower. The amount of retcons and bullshit plot holes is IMMENSE in comic books. I mean, come on, finish a character and then retire him! It is that fucking easy!

You can't just fucking finish Superman. That's like finishing James Bond.
#13 Edited by believer258 (11685 posts) -

It really depends on what the plot hole is and how good the rest of the story is comparatively.

To give an example, in Full Metal Alchemist (the show I take my avatar from), there's a character whose soul is attached to a piece of armor by a seal written in blood (it was a desperate attempt to keep him alive). Late in the show, a little detail comes out of nowhere that he can't go too deep in water or this seal will wash off and he will die. Earlier in the show, though, he and his brother are sparring and his brother knocks him into the water. Holes like this are just minor details. This doesn't hurt the show's plot that much because it's just a minor detail that has some minor significance, but not much, and the discrepancy is only noticeable if you remember little details.

However, something like what the OP mentioned is just horrible storytelling. I wouldn't give something that did that much of my time at all. Major inconsistencies cause the story to just become shit.

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#14 Posted by Soapy86 (2620 posts) -

I generally don't give a shit about plot holes and "inconsistencies" unless they're really egregious. In my experience the people who whine about that sort of stuff tend to be obsessive people who need everything to fit together perfectly.

Then again I tend to focus on character, atmosphere, and tone and not so much on story, but that's just me.

#15 Posted by MikeGosot (3227 posts) -
@BraveToaster said:
"how can you defeat an enemy who can read your mind?" At that point, I really had no desire to continue watching the series.
Are you sure that what he was saying, was literal?