Portable hole

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In various works of fiction, a portable hole is a device that can be used to contravene the laws of physics. It generally resembles a circular cloth which is placed on a surface to create a hole. If placed on a wall, the user could crawl through the hole and come out on the other side of the surface. Placed on the ground, the user might be able to insert objects into it or allow others to fall in, as if he or she had dug a hole. The exact method in which the device works is dependent on the work of fiction.


Portable holes are sometimes created and used in Looney Tunes cartoons, including such variations as foldable doorways[citation needed].

The Hole Idea (1955, animated and directed by Robert McKimson) depicts the invention of the portable hole by Calvin Q. Calculus.[1] This is apparently the portable hole's first appearance on screen.[citation needed]

One Road Runner cartoon involved the use of "liquid hole", a black tar-like substance that came in a bottle.[2][better source needed] When poured on a surface, it dried into a portable hole with the consistency of a circle of cloth. Another episode ("The Black Hole") has the Coyote using a portable hole, which is picked up and reused by the Road Runner.[3][better source needed]

In the Morph episode "Portable Hole", a portable hole is used to access cakes which are hidden in the hole. A pair of holes are also used to construct a portal, allowing a character's hand, and several inanimate objects, to pass from one to the other.[4][5][better source needed]


Who Framed Roger Rabbit uses a portable hole as a plot device.[6][7] Detective Eddie Valiant is able to escape being crushed by a steamroller by using one.[8]

In Yellow Submarine, Ringo picks up a hole he finds in the Sea of Holes, put it in his pocket, and uses it later to aid an escape, leading to his classic line of dialogue I've got a hole in me pocket.[9][10] He uses the hole to save Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band from an anti-music globe that they are trapped in, and, according to the live-action epilogue, gave half of the hole to the Nowhere Man.[citation needed]


One of Terry Gilliam's cartoons in Monty Python's Flying Circus has the police using a large portable hole in the road to catch criminals, they fall in, then the hole is taken to the lockup and thrown upon the ceiling causing the criminals to fall out. Another cartoon involves the pepperpot Mrs. Cutout being deposited in front of a laundromat by a large portable doorway.

In an episode of Ed, Edd n Eddy entitled One + One = Ed, Eddy falls through a hole in the ground which causes him to appear in the sky off-camera, where he then falls through the hole in a recursive loop. This continues until Ed picks up the hole, leaving Eddy to crash onto the now-solid ground. Ed uses the hole for a couple gags then eventually rolls it up and keeps it. Later in the cartoon, Edd and Eddy fall into a manhole, and Ed, believing it to be another portable hole, says, Don't worry guys! I'll just pick up the hole again!, and proceeds to excavate the entire manhole entrance tube from the ground.

The cartoon series Channel Umptee-3 features a character named Holey Moley, who carries several portable holes and uses at least one in every episode.

In the Disney series The New Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh, Gopher searches for a hole blown off on an overly windy day.


In Rajiv Joseph's play, Guards at the Taj, one of the characters, Humayun, invents a transportable hole.[11][12] Humayun describes it:[13]

It's literally a hole you could take anywhere with you. And you could attach it to anything. And anything you attached it to would suddenly have a hole in it. Say you wanted to go through a wall? You could. Or say you are trapped in a dungeon. Or you are in the desert and it is so hot! Hole in the ground, now you can sleep in some shade. Also there would be things to eat in the hole.

— Rajiv Joseph, Guards at the Taj

In the novelization of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Elliott uses a portable hole when the lead characters are playing Dungeons & Dragons.[14]

A portable hole is used in Jack Vance's Liane the Wayfarer, published in The Dying Earth in 1950.[15][better source needed]


There is a comic character called Horrible Hole which is a living portable hole[citation needed]. Similar characters include The Spot (a Spider-Man villain) and Doorman, a mutant member of the Great Lakes Avengers.

In episode 695 of the Final Fantasy-based comic 8-Bit Theater, Fighter, after buying some items and a portable hole with Red Mage, decides to work smarter, not harder, and put all the items into the portable hole. He then proceeds to fold the portable hole into itself.[16]

In the anime and manga series One Piece, a villain known as Blueno has the ability to create doors on any surface, including the air.


In the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game, a portable hole is a circle of cloth made from phase spider webs, strands of ether and beams of starlight. When deployed, it creates an extradimensional space six feet in diameter by ten feet deep. Folding the cloth causes the entrance to this space to disappear, but items placed inside the hole remain there. Sufficient air is contained in the hole to support life for up to ten minutes.[17][18]

In Alan Cox's AberMUD, a portable hole could be used to carry equipment.[citation needed]

Video games

In the computer game Disney's Toontown Online, players can move, or, teleport to a new location by pulling holes from their pockets and jumping into them.

Portable holes are one of the hazard weapons in the game Cel Damage.

In King's Quest VI: Heir Today, Gone Tomorrow, Prince Alexander solves many problems with the use of a hole in the wall he finds on the Isle of Wonder.

In Kingdom of Loathing, a combat item called a plot hole is captured from probability giants, a portable hole which is used as a land mine, reducing an enemy's health by twenty, and confusing one.

The video game Portal features a gun that shoots portals whose behavior is similar to holes. In this case, two holes are created, and if someone walks or falls through, they arrive at the other with the same speed but turned in the direction the portal is facing. One use of this is to fling oneself.

In many of The Sims games, if a person trying to leave your property is trapped in a room with no doors, one will take out a portable hole and use it to teleport out.

In the game World of Warcraft, Portable Hole, a bag with 24 slots (one of the largest in the game), was introduced in the patch 3.3.

In the game Toonstruck the player can collect a portable hole which is used to quickly travel between lands.


The Unicode symbol for HOLE, U+1F573, with alias "portable hole" was approved in 2014 as part of the Miscellaneous Symbols and Pictographs chart in Unicode 7.0,[19] and was part of Emoji 1.0, published in 2015.[20] As pictorial representations for emoji are platform-dependent, Emojipedia shows images of the (portable) hole symbol as depicted on various platforms.[21]

See also


  1. ^ "Robert McKimson's "The Hole Idea" (1955) |". cartoonresearch.com. Retrieved 2018-06-12.
  2. ^ "Mmmm, tasty! Speckled trout, redfish, flounder, black drum and more holding to Lake Pontchartrain Causeway". NOLA.com. Retrieved 2018-06-12.
  3. ^ Whattunesyouon (2010-05-19), The Black Hole, retrieved 2018-06-13
  4. ^ "Portable Hole". Morph. Retrieved 2018-06-19.
  5. ^ "The History of the Portable Hole". Morph. Retrieved 2018-06-19.
  6. ^ "Who Framed Roger Rabbit". Brandon Talks Movies. 2017-06-15. Retrieved 2018-06-13.
  7. ^ Elwood, Graham; Mancini, Chris (2012-06-01). The Comedy Film Nerds Guide to Movies. Morgan James Publishing. ISBN 9781614482215.
  8. ^ "May 28th, 2018 Movie – Who Framed Roger Rabbit". movieadayblog. 2018-05-28. Retrieved 2018-06-13.
  9. ^ Ebert, Roger (2016-09-28). The Great Movies IV. University of Chicago Press. ISBN 9780226403984.
  10. ^ Ebert, Roger. "Yellow Submarine Movie Review (1968) | Roger Ebert". www.rogerebert.com. Retrieved 2018-06-13.
  11. ^ "On (Trans)Portable Holes". Marin Theatre Company. Retrieved 2018-06-13.
  12. ^ "Guards at the Taj". Retrieved 2018-06-13.
  13. ^ Joseph, Rajiv (2017-04-11). Guards at the Taj. Oberon Books. ISBN 9781786821447.
  14. ^ Collins, Terry (2002). E.T., the Extra-terrestrial: The Movie. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 9780689843679.
  15. ^ "Tales of the Dying Earth". Retrieved 2018-06-19.
  16. ^ http://www.nuklearpower.com/2006/05/13/episode-695-physics-are-for-other-people/
  17. ^ "Wondrous Items :: d20srd.org". www.d20srd.org. Retrieved 2018-06-14.
  18. ^ "Portable Hole | D&D 5th Edition on Roll20 Compendium". roll20.net. Retrieved 2018-06-14.
  19. ^ "Unicode: Miscellaneous Symbols and Pictographs". Retrieved 2018-08-20.
  20. ^ "Emoji Version 1.0". Retrieved 2018-08-20.
  21. ^ "Emojipedia: Hole". Retrieved 2018-08-20.