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A plot hole or plothole is an obvious mistake or missing element in the plot of a fictional work, such as a book, play, film, or TV show. These include such things as illogical or impossible events, and statements or events that contradict earlier events in the storyline.
Plot holes in film have been defined as "...contradictions in a screenplay... [which] can both be mentioned on paper or implied by the premise and universe of the screenplay."
While many stories have unanswered questions, unlikely events or chance occurrences, a plot hole is one that is essential to the story's outcome. Plot holes are usually seen as weaknesses or flaws in a story. However, certain genres (and some media) that require or allow suspension of disbelief — especially action, comedy, fantasy, and horror — are more tolerant towards plot holes.
- Plot (narrative)
- Continuity (fiction)
- Deus ex machina
- Retroactive continuity
- Suspension of disbelief
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