Things movies and TV shows constantly get wrong about real life

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The way people eat

Have you ever noticed the way people sit down for breakfast on TV shows and movies? They always sit down for an entire breakfast buffet including both orange juice and coffee, omelettes or pancakes, cut-up fruit, toast, and other foods. The truth is, most people don’t really eat like that on weekdays, they usually grab something on their way out and don’t get up extra early to make pancakes. And usually, the characters don’t even end up eating all those! They just grab a bite and go to work or school.

Does nobody have a job?

Sitcoms often have a group of people who hang out with each other day or night. And while most of the time we know what each of them do for a living, the characters seem to have a lot of free time on their hands. Unless the episode’s plot has something to do with work, they seem to have all the time in the world to hang out at coffee shops, at home, or anywhere else. They also take extremely long lunches. How are any of them still employed, really?

Talking on the phone

Ever noticed how basic mannerisms fly out of the window when it comes to TV shows and films? Whenever someone talks to one of his friends or family members on the phone, they will end the conversation and just hang up the phone. They’ll almost never say “goodbye” or “talk to you later” or anything that resembles the way regular people end their phone conversations. We guess these characters have more important things to do than be polite!

Ordering drinks

Another unrealistic thing we can see on our screens is how characters go about ordering things, and particularly drinks. They can hang out at a pub or a bar, walk up to the bartender and simply ask for “one beer.” Never mind the brand or the quantity, just bring them their beer! And have you ever tried ordering just coffee or tea, without specifying which kind you would like? In the real world, it doesn’t quite work like that.

Addressing other people

We get that when we’re watching a movie, the filmmakers want us to remember the names of the characters in it, so they have to repeat them. But sometimes, they excessively repeat names over and over to the point where the dialogue just doesn’t make sense. People don’t repeat each other’s names every other sentence in a conversation. “How could you do this to me, Jack? I can’t believe you, Jack. Okay, Jack? Goodbye, Jack.”

People’s reactions to explosions

At the 2009 MTV Movie Awards, Andy Samberg performed a brilliant song along with Will Ferrell and J. J. Abrams. It was called “Cool Guys Don’t Look at Explosions,” and it pointed out something that happens pretty often in action films. The hero just blows stuff up and walks away like it’s just another Tuesday. No big deal, just a massive explosion behind me, and damage worth millions of dollars. They simply can’t look back to see what kind of damage was caused – it wouldn’t be cool enough.

Running in heels

Yes, some women are used to walking around on high heels, and sometimes very high heels (we honestly don’t know how they do it). But in movies, the woman always run on a pair of high heeled pumps of the most uncomfortable kind. The sci-fi film Jurassic World caused a controversy when Bryce Dallas Howard’s character wore heels while running away from deadly dinosaurs, because frankly – wouldn’t you take uncomfortable shoes off if you had to run away from danger? Well, at least this explains how women keep tripping over things in horror films.

Makeup is always intact

It doesn’t matter if you’re in the midst of an apocalypse, if you’re underwater, in the jungle, or in the middle of a high-speed chase. Women in movies seem to have the most resistant and long-lasting makeup in the world. They could battle with aliens, zombies, or mummies, run for miles, and spend two days in an underground bunker – and their lipstick would still be intact. Meanwhile, we can’t even get through lunch without ruining our makeup.

Perfect hair day, every day

Except for makeup, there’s another thing that is seemingly unaffected by anything – hair. Normally, if someone did the things superheroes usually do in movies – running, shooting at bad guys, engaging in martial arts, and similar activities – they would probably break a sweat. But even if these heroes do sweat (which they usually don’t), their hair always looks perfect, like they’ve just walked out of the hair salon. Some people have great hair most days, but no one has great hair after saving the world.

Spacious air vents

In films, many times you could see the protagonist making their way out of a sticky situation simply by using air vents. Whether they need to make a quick escape, or enter a building undetected, air vents seem to be the way to go. However, in real life, air vents aren’t actually big enough for a person to move so freely in, and people would probably feel incredibly claustrophobic in one. And when was the last time you’ve seen an elevator hatch in real life?

Watching TV

In movies and TV shows, character don’t just watch television the way normal people do. The moment they turn on their TV, something relevant to the plot will come up – usually the news. Just as they turn on the television, the one news story that affects the characters will be talked about in specifics. It might be a more cinematic way of discovering things, but most people we know get their news online these days.

New York City

New York City is often misrepresented in movies and TV shows – in real life, NYC is very crowded and fast-paced. There’s also scaffolding covering many buildings, which are hidden from sight in films. When you see someone living in New York, they would usually have a pretty fancy apartment, but realistically, these apartments should be half the size they are in the movies. It’s pretty expensive to live in New York, so people with normal jobs probably won’t be able to afford a huge, lavish, two-bedroom apartment in Manhattan.

School time

Any teacher could tell you that they plan classes ahead and know exactly what they’re going to talk about. They plan the material they’re going to teach over the class period so they’ll have just enough time. But in movies, somehow the teacher always gets interrupted mid-sentence by the bell, and is unable to finish the class. They also shout homework assignments to students who are already gathering their stuff and not even writing it down. If schools really looked like this, graduation rates would be significantly lower.

Making plans

Have you ever noticed how characters make plans with one another in films? They always set a date to have “dinner” or “lunch” but they never really specify the time. If we tried to make plans with someone “tomorrow night” or “Tuesday at noon” they might actually need to know the time we had in mind. But in movies, they always seem to read each other’s minds when it comes to the time of their designated date.

Ordering food, then leaving

When you sit down at a restaurant, café, or diner, there’s a certain way you’re supposed to go about it. You order food, the waiter brings it, you eat, ask for the check, pay the bill, and then leave. But in some TV shows and movies, some of these steps can be easily skipped if it fits the plot. For example, eating. Who needs to eat when you can just order something off the menu and then leave when you’re done with your conversation?

Never locking the doors

People in real life would do anything they can to avoid thieves breaking into their home. And the most basic thing you can do is lock your door when you leave. But for some reason, fictional characters we see on the screen hardly ever bother to lock anything. They leave their doors open for their neighbors to barge in anytime they want, and they don’t even lock their cars when they exit them. Seems pretty risky to us.

Clothes are disposable

We love shopping for clothes, but even we don’t have never-ending wardrobes. People have a finite number of clothing items in their closets, and wear the same clothes over and over. That’s what laundry is for, right? Even celebrities have been known to wear the same clothes twice. But in some TV shows, characters are never seen repeating the same outfit twice – even if these characters are supposed to be in financial difficulties. Not very realistic, is it?

Morning breath isn’t a thing

Let’s face it, we all have morning breath. It’s just the way humans are built – after a long night’s sleep, our breath isn’t that fresh in the morning, until we get up and brush our teeth. But if you ask movie characters, morning breath is completely ignorable when you’re in love. We have to admit it’s pretty romantic, though, that they want to kiss the person they’re waking up with so much, they don’t want to wait for them to brush their teeth.

The ugly side of crying

Crying isn’t a very pretty thing. It’s not just tears slowly streaming down your face while you make a sad face. Your eyes become red, your nose becomes red and runny, and if you’re wearing makeup – it will run. All of it. But for some reason, when we’re watching people cry on our screens, they usually look pretty elegant. And even if their mascara is running, the next minute all signs of crying are gone. As if nothing ever happened.

That time of the month

When it comes to addressing the ladies’ time of the months, movies do a pretty good job avoiding it altogether. If it is mentioned, it’s mostly someone asking a woman if she’s having her PMS, or it’s miss-represented in some way, but otherwise it’s left in the shadows. You may not see it so much on the screen, but it’s actually a very natural part of life, and it’s actually not that big of a deal.

Love scenes

In recent years, more and more films and TV shows are depicting love scenes in a much more realistic way. This means awkwardness, laughter, bumping of teeth, tripping, and everything normal people might do. But in many movies, love scenes are borderline ridiculous, and build-up unrealistically high expectations. Clothes are ripped off, tables are cleared, and the two people involved are so perfectly in sync. In real life, things aren’t quite as perfect as they seem on screen.

How quickly people pass out – or don’t

Action films aren’t always very realistic, but there’s one thing that stands out the most – fighting scenes. Sure, we’ve come a long way since the old days, when the bad guys waited their turn before attacking the good guy one by one, to his convenience. But that doesn’t mean it’s accurate, either; many times someone could get knocked over the head with a blunt object and recover in a second. Other times, they might pass out for hours from a single punch.

Hacking made easy

Hacking is another thing that’s grossly misrepresented in action films. Usually, in movies, the young and attractive hacker opens their laptop and starts typing code lines in the speed of light, to easily hack anywhere. We’re pretty sure hacking into government databases isn’t that easy. Other movies make it look incredibly cool, like in the James Bond film, Skyfall, when Q goes about hacking, and the code turns into an underground map of London. We have to admit, though – it does look pretty cool.

Drivers are very considerate

No action movie or television show would be complete without a good ol’ car chase. They are almost always filled with tire screeches, flips, and swerving from one lane to the next. However, anyone who has driven in a big city will know that it’s almost impossible to take part in a car chase on the roads. There will always be someone beeping you, and there’s never even any space to move from one lane to the next because it’s always so chock-a-block. It’s just not realistic at all.

Cabs are always free

In the history of any movie or television show, have you ever seen someone scout around their wallet for the correct change to give a cab driver? We think not. Instead, they either make their way out of the cab without paying at all, or they simply thrust a wad of bills at them because they’re in a rush. In a society where money is everything, people can’t just be walking out of a taxi after a freebie or handing over $50 for a $5 journey. We need the money, y’all.

The news is always perfectly timed

When something huge is going on in a movie or television show, you can almost guarantee that the main character will simply turn on their TV and see the drama unfold before their very eyes on the news station that just happened to be covering the story at that exact time. Pretty neat, huh? Unfortunately, real life isn’t like that, and the news isn’t on a 24-hour loop. You have to make your way past the snowboarding squirrels and the jaywalking drama before you get to the good stuff hours later.

You have to hold hands while running

It’s the age-old love story that involves a couple who find themselves in trouble and have to run away holding hands. This solidifies their love and shows them both that they are in it together. Their loved can’t be tamed, guys. Yet, has anyone actually done this in real life? If you have, you’ll know that running while holding hands with someone is not the easiest thing in the world. Things get even worse when the two people are completely different heights. You just slow each other down, which is not ideal.

Only NYC and LA exist

We can almost guarantee that the last American television show or movie you watched was set in either New York City or Los Angeles. That’s just how the world of show business works. The main characters will either be living their lives in the bustling cosmopolitan city, or they’ll be hiking through the hills of LA and falling asleep under the Hollywood sign. If an alien were to watch these movies, they would believe that only NYC and LA exist in the country. Where are the movies that are set in Arkansas?

You have to approach a burglar

If you’re fond of horror movies, you’ll know that there is always a break-in scene. That’s just the way they work. Someone makes their way into your house through an open window, and then they knock over something to awaken the person sleeping upstairs. In these instances, the characters don’t think about calling the police and letting them know that they are in danger – because that would just be too easy. Instead, they decide to confront the burglar with a baseball bat, because that’s totally gonna help you.

There’s always a parking space

There is nothing worse than being in a rush to get somewhere because you just know that everything is going to work against you. After all, the world is full of traffic and even more cars, which makes parking an absolute nightmare. However, these people in movies and television shows never seen to have a problem with this. When they are in a rush, they simply pick up their keys and manage to nab the last remaining spot that is right outside of where they need to be. If only.

You will always win a fight

It’s never nice to see your favorite character get beaten up in television shows and movies, but it’s okay because they almost always come out unscathed. Yes, even if they have nine people ganging up on them at once! That’s because these characters manage to find the nice thugs that simply take it in turns to run up to them and throw a punch. They don’t all crowd around them together, because that would just be mean – and they’re totally not like that in real life.

Police officers are all about the action

If you know someone who is a police officer, you’ll know that there are boring aspects of their jobs. They don’t spend their days chasing bad guys around town, they don’t spend their days searching the criminal database and solving that crime that has stumped the precinct for the last decade, and they don’t then go to the nearest bar in their uniform to pick up the most beautiful girl in the room. What the movies and TV shows don’t show you is that these guys also have to do dull paperwork that can get pretty monotonous.

You wake up with perfect makeup

Have you ever watched a movie and been astounded at how beautiful some of the women look in the morning? They wake up looking fresh-faced, their hair looks as if it has been blow dried in their sleep, and their makeup is one point. Their eyebrows are on fleek, and their mascara isn’t halfway down their face. It really is a miracle. Of course, real women who have accidentally slept in their makeup will know that this just isn’t the case. Your will instead wake up with panda eyes, oily skin, and some pretty painful spots.

You can easily become a locksmith

There’s nothing worse than watching a character try and break their way into a locked door because you just know that it’s totally unrealistic. All these characters use is a bobby pin or a credit card, and they have easily made their way into someone else’s property to get on with their mischief. If we were to take this as gospel, we’d all be breaking into other people’s houses and stealing all of their belongings. In reality, even professional locksmiths have to carry around bags and bags of tools to crack the door.

Privacy isn’t a thing

If you’ve ever tried to find out where someone is in real life, you’ll know that it’s pretty darn hard. If you know that they are staying in a certain hotel, you can’t just phone up and confirm this with the receptionist. Instead, they have to abide by their privacy rules – because that’s kinda how the world works. If they were to disclose this kind of information, they will probably get fired. However, this doesn’t seem to be a problem in Hollywood, because these receptionists are always willing to risk their jobs for strangers.

Being unconscious is no big deal

No action movie would be complete without someone getting knocked out. It’s basically the law. There is always someone who will be the victim of a rather rambunctious punch that will knock them out instantly, and then they will wake up a few hours later as if they’ve just had a nice little nap. Of course, anyone who has been punched and rendered unconscious in real life will know that things aren’t quite as easy as that. You wake up dazed and confused, you’re in a heck load of pain, and it’s not quite as instant.

You’re going to love school

American movies and television shows are all about their school spirit. The cheerleaders spend their days in their uniforms while screaming their school chant every five minutes, the sports stars are basically famous, and they all turn out to cry and reign over their school when it comes to graduation day. But is life really like that? Do you really care that much about your school and your school mascot? While there are some people who do, there are others who couldn’t care. They just want out of there.

The shower is ready straight away

How many times have you watched an actor jump into the shower and turn it on while standing underneath the showerhead? If you have, there’s a high chance that you have cringed so hard your eyebrows meshed together. That’s because any normal person knows that you can’t simply turn on your shower and start washing because it’s not going to be warm. Instead, you’ll be hit with a jet of freezing cold water that will almost always make you curse. Everyone knows you have to wait a while before getting under.

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