snopes.com  

Go Back   snopes.com > SLC Central > Social Studies

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 22 December 2016, 06:57 AM
BrianB's Avatar
BrianB BrianB is offline
 
Join Date: 03 March 2000
Location: Camarillo, CA
Posts: 3,522
Psychic The movie that doesn't exist and the Redditors who think it does

http://www.newstatesman.com/science-...-think-it-does

Quote:
Over the years, hundreds of people online have shared memories of a cheesy Nineties movie called "Shazaam". There is no evidence that such a film was ever made. What does this tell us about the quirks of collective memory?

{ snip }

"Berenstein" truthers believe in something called the "Mandela Effect": a theory that a large group of people with the same false memory used to live in a parallel universe (the name comes from those who fervently believe that Nelson Mandela died while in prison). VICE's article about the theory was shared widely, leading thousands of people to r/MandelaEffect, a subreddit for those with false memories to share their experiences.
I've been exploring this subreddit and the good news is that among all the expected wackiness there are some rational discussions about how these false memories might have come about. And if you're as fascinated by this subject as I am the snopes article provides some really neat history of this subject.

Brian
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 22 December 2016, 11:27 AM
Crius of CoH's Avatar
Crius of CoH Crius of CoH is online now
 
Join Date: 13 February 2006
Location: Paragon City (Cranston), RI
Posts: 1,595
Default

There's a cryptozoological version of this called "The Thunderbird Photograph", and I'm one of the.. "victims"?.... of it.

Basically, there's a crypto legend that a sepia-tone photograph exists, of a group of American Old West-type characters standing to the sides of a very large bird-like creature that they apparently shot and killed, which has been stretched out and hung on the exterior wall of a wooden building. The bird-like creature is a "thunderbird", and actually looks very much like a pterodactyl.

I encountered this legend in a book on general weirdness, Jerome Clark's Unexplained!. The moment I read it, I thought to myself, "I know that picture! It was in one of those books on the weird I read back in 6th grade - it was one of the books in Mrs. [6th grade homeroom teacher]'s room!" I had a very clear image in my mind of the picture.

It doesn't exist. Whether some version of the Mandela Effect, "holodeck" reality reprogramming, parallel universe switching, or some other supernatural effect, it doesn't exist - but I "remember" it.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 22 December 2016, 11:45 AM
TallGeekyGirl's Avatar
TallGeekyGirl TallGeekyGirl is offline
 
Join Date: 31 December 2005
Location: Virginia
Posts: 11,816
Default

I came close to something like this a few months ago when comedian Kevin Meaney died. I was convinced that he had died several years ago, and it was a bit strange for me. I remember reading about his death and being a bit bummed out, etc.

After musing and mulling over it for a day or two, I suddenly realized that the comedian I was thinking of who'd died a while back was John Pinetta. Somehow in my mind when I heard Kevin Meaney had died, it got linked to Pinetta's death and almost became inextricably merged.

The brain is weird. That's the Occam's Razor answer here... it sure as hell makes a lot more sense than "AOMG I'M FROM AN ALTERNATE UNIVERSE!!1!one!"
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 22 December 2016, 12:07 PM
Gutter Monkey's Avatar
Gutter Monkey Gutter Monkey is offline
 
Join Date: 13 December 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 3,514
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crius of CoH View Post
There's a cryptozoological version of this called "The Thunderbird Photograph"
That's a really widespread one, there's a whole lot of people who swear they've seen that photo. Some of them have even done sketches of the photo they apparently remember and the sketches are usually pretty detailed, but strangely enough there's significant differences between all the sketches I've seen.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 22 December 2016, 01:35 PM
Morrigan's Avatar
Morrigan Morrigan is offline
 
Join Date: 26 March 2001
Location: Vassar, MI
Posts: 5,411
Default

That's funny, because I do remember the movie Shazaam. Strange!
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 22 December 2016, 02:05 PM
ASL's Avatar
ASL ASL is offline
 
Join Date: 04 July 2003
Location: Norfolk, VA
Posts: 5,214
Default

Ok... Just so we're all clear, the movie was Kazaam. Yes, I know the article says as much eventually and it hardly diminishes the Mandela effect, in fact it helps clarify it.

It's not some shared memory implanted without explanation, rather it's a misunderstanding of a common memory of a pretty crappy 90's movie that most of us only saw the trailer for (if we saw any part of), some guy mis-remembered the title and the name of the "actor," and because the movie was such a flop almost no one knows the movie well enough to say "no, wait, the title is a bit off and it was Shaq, not Sinbad."

I knew such a movie existed, I must wasn't sure what the title/actor was but I found it through a more general search before I read the statesman article.

Bottom line: you don't remember a movie called Shazaam. You vaguely remember a movie called Kazaam and you only think it might be called Shazaam because someone without any reference insisted its called Shazaam and that is a pretty close match to the title.

ETA: and let's not forget about that cartoon series (that Kazaam probably ripped off) and further confused the heck out of people trying to remember the movie.

Last edited by ASL; 22 December 2016 at 02:34 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 22 December 2016, 02:29 PM
TallGeekyGirl's Avatar
TallGeekyGirl TallGeekyGirl is offline
 
Join Date: 31 December 2005
Location: Virginia
Posts: 11,816
Default

There is an old Hanna-Barbera cartoon called Shazzan (note that it ends with an N), about a genie who helps two kids with a flying camel (named Kaboobie) and a fantastic Arabian Nights-style setting. It crops up from time to time on retro cartoon networks like Boomerang.

I think what's happening is that vague memories of that cartoon are getting mixed in with Kazaam, and somehow Sinbad gets cast in the role.

Personal anecdote: When I heard about Kazaam, I at first thought it was going to be an updated, live-action adaptation of Shazzan.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 22 December 2016, 02:35 PM
NobleHunter's Avatar
NobleHunter NobleHunter is online now
 
Join Date: 21 September 2005
Location: Peterborough, Ontario
Posts: 543
Default

If I start thinking remembering that Mandela died in prison, I'm going to be cross.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 22 December 2016, 04:41 PM
Cervus's Avatar
Cervus Cervus is online now
 
Join Date: 21 October 2002
Location: Florida
Posts: 20,925
Default

I feel like I'm being gaslighted in this thread because I quite clearly remember an ad for Shazaam! in Disney Adventures magazine.

And this is what I've always known as the "Thunderbird photograph." It is, of course, not a real creature, and there are variations, but the image itself exists even if what is displayed is fake. It is obviously not a false memory, because it's right here:



ETA: Is the confusion about the Thunderbird photograph the issue of whether the photo depicts something real (of course it doesn't) or rather that a photograph itself exists? Because what you may be picturing in your head is an image you actually saw, but it's a fake/staged/re-created/manipulated image. That's not the same as the Mandela effect.

Last edited by Cervus; 22 December 2016 at 04:48 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 22 December 2016, 04:49 PM
ASL's Avatar
ASL ASL is offline
 
Join Date: 04 July 2003
Location: Norfolk, VA
Posts: 5,214
Default

Honestly, it looks like they're standing over a collapsed tent if anything. Now if you want a definitely fake photo:
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 22 December 2016, 07:47 PM
Nick Theodorakis Nick Theodorakis is offline
 
Join Date: 05 November 2005
Location: Fishers, IN
Posts: 6,657
Default

There was also a live action kids TV show in the 1970s called "Shazam!", which was loosely based on Captain Marvel, see

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shazam!_(TV_series)

Nick
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 22 December 2016, 08:51 PM
Gutter Monkey's Avatar
Gutter Monkey Gutter Monkey is offline
 
Join Date: 13 December 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 3,514
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cervus View Post
ETA: Is the confusion about the Thunderbird photograph the issue of whether the photo depicts something real (of course it doesn't) or rather that a photograph itself exists? Because what you may be picturing in your head is an image you actually saw, but it's a fake/staged/re-created/manipulated image. That's not the same as the Mandela effect.
That the photo exists. People remember seeing the photo in a book or a magazine as for back as the 1960s but the only versions people can find are modern photoshopped versions.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 22 December 2016, 08:54 PM
ASL's Avatar
ASL ASL is offline
 
Join Date: 04 July 2003
Location: Norfolk, VA
Posts: 5,214
Default

I'm not sure if Cervus' is photoshopped in part because it looks like a collapsed tent. Or a log with a couple rocks. I could easily see that photo being in a history book (if real) and then having people go "hey, look, this looks like they're standing over a dead pterodactyl, doesn't it?
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 22 December 2016, 09:19 PM
Gutter Monkey's Avatar
Gutter Monkey Gutter Monkey is offline
 
Join Date: 13 December 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 3,514
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASL View Post
Honestly, it looks like they're standing over a collapsed tent if anything. Now if you want a definitely fake photo:
That particular 'photo' is from episode 4 of the 2000 TV series FreakyLinks, it turns up at about 29:30 in this youtube video.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 22 December 2016, 09:42 PM
Gutter Monkey's Avatar
Gutter Monkey Gutter Monkey is offline
 
Join Date: 13 December 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 3,514
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cervus View Post
There's a lot of chatter all over the net saying that this is an actual photo created for the FreakyLinks TV show using a prop pteranodon and some guys in Civil War costumes but a few people are saying that it was for a film.

A few people are identifying this prop as the one in the photo:




CryptoMundo confirms that the prop came from the Fox TV/Universal Studio and is now at the International Cryptozoology Museum.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 22 December 2016, 10:17 PM
Gutter Monkey's Avatar
Gutter Monkey Gutter Monkey is offline
 
Join Date: 13 December 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 3,514
Default

It turns out that the Cryptozoology Museum identify the model as a prop from the FreakyLinks TV show and display it with a copy of the photo:


Looks like FreakyLinks created both images, one being obviously photoshopped and the other being a staged photo with a prop.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 23 December 2016, 01:57 PM
Dr. Dave Dr. Dave is offline
 
Join Date: 28 June 2005
Location: Montgomery County, MD
Posts: 5,221
Devil

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick Theodorakis View Post
There was also a live action kids TV show in the 1970s called "Shazam!", which was loosely based on Captain Marvel, see

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shazam!_(TV_series)

Nick
Yes, thank you. I clearly remember watching a show- not cartoon- where a guy would yell "shazam!" and activate his superpower. Or something like that.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 23 December 2016, 02:11 PM
ChasFink's Avatar
ChasFink ChasFink is offline
 
Join Date: 09 December 2015
Location: Mineola, NY
Posts: 358
Vanishing

The FreakyLinks website (meant to represent the website seen in the show) was up long before the show premiered, and was mistaken for a "real" site by some. I remember (no really I do) Fortean Times mentioning it as a very clever parody site - and specifically writing about the thunderbird photo - but they didn't realize it was a marketing gimmick. I don't recall which photo was on the site, but maybe one was on the site and the other on the TV show?
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 23 December 2016, 09:32 PM
Gutter Monkey's Avatar
Gutter Monkey Gutter Monkey is offline
 
Join Date: 13 December 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 3,514
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChasFink View Post
The FreakyLinks website (meant to represent the website seen in the show) was up long before the show premiered, and was mistaken for a "real" site by some. I remember (no really I do) Fortean Times mentioning it as a very clever parody site - and specifically writing about the thunderbird photo - but they didn't realize it was a marketing gimmick. I don't recall which photo was on the site, but maybe one was on the site and the other on the TV show?
The FreakyLinks website still exists! The links have changed but Haxan has the whole thing in their archives section

Here's their page on the pteranodon photo, it has the staged photo with the prop.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 27 December 2016, 08:11 AM
BrianB's Avatar
BrianB BrianB is offline
 
Join Date: 03 March 2000
Location: Camarillo, CA
Posts: 3,522
New Zealand <- Still not west of Australia.

The OP article by Amelia Tait has generated a lot of other articles on sites like Business Insider, Vox, Mashable, and many others. Unfortunately, most of these articles just rehash the OP article. However, the Mashable article had the following tweet from Sinbad, which made me laugh.


(Direct link).

I've really enjoyed the discussion here and I think snopesters are on the right track to where the mythical Shazaam! movie came from. The one that really intrigues me, though, is the Nelson Mandela dying in prison one. I wonder if they're thinking of Stephen Biko, who died in police custody in 1977? However, that date doesn't match the Mandela Effect early '80s date. On the other hand, there is the 1980 Peter Gabriel song and the 1987 movie Cry Freedom.

I also really like the New Zealand one although I think that's just from poor knowledge of geography.

Brian
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Do The 10 Planks of Communism really exist? DawnStorm Politics 10 09 January 2016 06:31 PM
'Star Wars' prequel: Han Solo movie to be directed by 'Lego Movie' team TallGeekyGirl Amusement Bark 10 09 July 2015 10:32 PM
The vaginal orgasm doesn't exist - clitoris holds the key to female pleasure A Turtle Named Mack NFBSK Gone Wild! 1 08 October 2014 06:28 PM
Why Does Acne Still Exist? snopes The Doctor Is In 22 07 June 2013 03:45 AM
Polygraphs say God doesn't exist snopes Religion 31 30 September 2011 06:07 AM


All times are GMT. The time now is 01:35 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.