Talk:2001: A Space Odyssey (film)

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References to use[edit]

Please add to the list references that can be used for the film article.
  • Booker, M. Keith (2006). "2001: A Space Odyssey". Alternate Americas: Science Fiction Film and American Culture. Praeger. pp. 75–90. ISBN 0275983951. 
  • Redner, Gregg (2010). "Strauss, Kubrick and Nietzsche: Recurrence and Reactivity in the Dance of Becoming That Is 2001: A Space Odyssey". In Bartkowiak, Mathew J. Sounds of the Future: Essays on Music in Science Fiction Film. McFarland. pp. 177–193. ISBN 0786444800. 
  • Stoehr, Kevin L. (2007). "2001: A Philosophical Odyssey". In Sanders, Steven M. The Philosophy of Science Fiction Film. The Philosophy of Popular Culture. pp. 119–134. ISBN 0813124727. 

Mentioning Match Cut in Plot Section[edit]

I believe that the match cut (the scene where an ape throws a bone into the air, which is then matched visually with a scene of an orbiting space station millions of years later) is important enough from a narrative perspective to warrant mention outside of editing techniques or whether the satellite was military in nature in the movie.

The match cut from this specific movie is currently discussed more in depth in Match cut#Notable examples than it is in this article, despite this article being about the movie. Even if this brief mention in the plot section is unwarranted, shouldn't this iconic (and, indeed, notable on its own) match cut be talked about in greater detail in this article?

So, my question is, does the match cut deserve a brief mention in the plot section, or should it not be even briefly mentioned until later during the development section? BearGlyph (talk) 16:36, 3 May 2016 (UTC)

It is not particularly relevant within the context of conveying the plot, which is the purpose of the plot summary. I am not aware of any other film articles that commentate on shot composition and the editing in the plot summary. For instance, the Citizen Kane article doesn't discuss its deep focus photography in its plot summary. I'm not saying it shouldn't be in the article just that the plot summary isn't really the place for it. Betty Logan (talk) 18:25, 3 May 2016 (UTC)
I agree with Betty. The match cut itself should not be mentioned as part of the plot. But the transformation of a primitive bone weapon to a modern machine (which could potentially be a weapon) is part of the plot narrative. —EncMstr (talk) 00:46, 4 May 2016 (UTC)
That being the case, where would be a good place to explicitly mention the match cut? It is currently not discussed until the "Parodies and Homages" section. Even then, it isn't really talked about. Perhaps in the editing section? I'm certain that sources exist that could be cited in this.BearGlyph (talk) 17:37, 4 May 2016 (UTC)
It really depends on how the sources discuss it. The editing section would be the obvious location, but if it has been influential on subsequent films then perhaps it should be discussed in the "Influence" section? Maybe there is enough material for both sections. There is a never-ending array of books discussing it: Betty Logan (talk) 17:49, 4 May 2016 (UTC)
The match cut was in the plot section when the article was promoted to GA status, which means that all who reviewed it didn't consider it a problem.[1] That brief mention gave the reader all the context they needed to understand the technical, cultural, etc. references that follow. Without that, all we have are sporadic mentions that make little sense. I'm going to be bold and put it back, and if necessary we can do the BRD thing. --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 18:43, 5 October 2016 (UTC)
We have done the "BRD thing" as you can see above; three editors discussed the placement of the information and determined that the plot summary is not the best location in the article to discuss the match cut. As it has been pointed out the match cut is a filming technique, and not part of the story itself. Readers do not need to know about the match cut to understand the plot of the film. The film could have followed the exact same story with or without the match cut. You can also see that the plot summary had a highly irregular structure when it was passed as a GA, and it has since been overhauled—and vastly improved IMO—by Popcornduff to conform to the more regular style, which also included removing the editorial commentary and bringing the word count closer to the recommendation. Betty Logan (talk) 23:35, 5 October 2016 (UTC)

Betty Logan asked me to take a look at this discussion. I have to confess I forgot ever working on this article and I had to look through some old edits and archives to refresh myself. I'm getting old.


  • The version of the article that passed the GA review was, in my opinion, not great. (No offence to the editors who worked on it or the editor who passed it.) As Betty mentioned, the plot summary was drastically overlong, which should have made it an automatic fail. Aside from that, the prose in the article generally was flowery and overdetailed; for example, the entire plot was summarised in the lead, which is overkill. I discussed some of my problems with the prose here. We shouldn't be using the version of the article that passed GA as a benchmark for quality.
  • The match cut doesn't belong in the plot summary. It's an editing detail, not a plot event. WP:FILMPLOT: "The plot summary is an overview of the film's main events, so avoid minutiae like dialogue, scene-by-scene breakdowns, individual jokes, and technical detail." The reader's understanding of the events of the plot is not improved by including the match cut.
  • It's a notable cut, though, so worth mentioning in the article elsewhere.
  • It doesn't seem necessarily crazy that the match cut might be discussed in more detail in an article about match cuts than in 2001 article itself. Match cuts are not the focus of this article. Popcornduff (talk) 00:52, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
(Thanks Betty for initiating the "D" part of the BRD thing. :-) ) Agreed that the plot summary doesn't need the match cut, but the reader needs to understand what's special about it, and a quick mention in the plot section is plausibly the most efficient way to do that. It's certainly better than the current situation; read through and you'll probably see what I mean. Think of it as increasing the article's net goodness at the expense of one section's perfection -- and realistically, it does the section no harm; editors are the only people who are fussy about such things (cf. the essay WP:Readers first). Sure there are other ways to do it, but do they have the same impact and pith? --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 11:00, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
But that has no impact or pith - It doesn't explain to the reader why the match cut (or the event of throwing the bone, for that matter) is at all significant. To the uninitiated reader, it's like "huh, why have you suddenly mentioned this editing detail in the plot summary?" If you want to talk about why it's notable and what it means, put it in a section about editing, cinematography, or theme, or something. If there's no good place for it to fit right now, create one. Popcornduff (talk) 11:26, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Popcornduff sums up the situation well. Nobody disputes that the match cut should be mentioned in the article but its thematic context and cinematic influence needs to be contextualised and its cursory mention in the plot does not do that. Betty Logan (talk) 14:42, 6 October 2016 (UTC)
Sure, there are several places (interpretation also comes to mind) where the match cut could be discussed, and it'd be great to do that. What I propose is different: not to discuss it, but merely to say what it is, early on, and thereby ease the reader into discussions that ensue. There's nothing like that now, and the current three mentions (Kubrick's planned caption, The Simpsons, and MST3K) almost come out of left field. The usual way to handle such cases is the lede, and that would actually be better than the plot, and maybe more comfortable for some of you too. (Usually putting stuff in the lede requires significant coverage in the body, but WP:LEDE makes an exception for "basic facts", which the simple occurrence of the match cut, and the fact of its fame, are.)
That said, it wouldn't hurt in the plot section too, and might help:
  • The match cut actually is plot-germaine, linking the stone- and space-age scenes (cf. note 7 and the text it supports at the match cut article).
  • Putting it under plot is elegant, because it shows exactly how and where it fits into the narrative. It's an unforgettable moment, and I think this text conveys that pretty well: "Triumphant, the tribe's leader throws his weapon-tool into the air as the scene shifts (via match cut) from the falling bone to an orbital satellite. ¶ In the space age..."
The lede allows us to add the important information that the cut is regarded as famous/iconic, so that's what I suggest, with the plot optional. Anyway, a basic need and an easy fix. Thanks for listening. --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 20:46, 6 October 2016 (UTC) (pinging BearGlyph and EncMstr if they want to weigh in)
The match cut is not plot-germaine. It ties into themes, it's visually striking, creates an emotional effect, etc, but it's not part of the plot. A plot is a series of events, and an event is someone or something doing something. A cut is not a plot event. It is an editing device. The reader's understanding of the overall plot is not improved at all by mentioning the edit. Where it occurs in the film can be explained very simply when the edit is discussed elsewhere, wherever that ends up being. Popcornduff (talk) 07:37, 7 October 2016 (UTC)

I would mention the match cut in the plot section. 2001 is a film told in visuals and visuals are described (but not commented on) in the plot section - read the last paragraph. Other films that are visual (such as Koyaanisqatsi) are described by their visuals. Trying to discern a plot from a series of visuals means the editor is interpreting the film and I would tend to replace that with what is actually seen on the screen. For example I would remove "the tribe learns to hunt for food, and kills the leader of their rivals, reclaiming the water hole" since it is an interpretation of the film, and simply mention the match cut. Fountains of Bryn Mawr (talk) 20:58, 6 October 2016 (UTC)

I'm confused by this. Of course the film is told in visuals; it's a movie. Personal interpretation only becomes an issue when (as in the final scenes of the movie) the film becomes abstract to the point that the "plot" in the conventional sense is obscure. I haven't seen the movie in a while, so I could be misremembering, but saying that the apes fend off a rival tribe is a pretty safe, uncontroversial description, isn't it?
Anyway, looking at the article again, I still think it has structural problems. I think the fact that there's no obvious place to put the match cut information is what is tempting some editors to put it in the plot section. Putting it in the lead solves nothing as there should be nothing discussed in the lead - like the fact that there is a notable match cut - that isn't in the article body too. (Surely no one's suggesting we explain the notability and significance of the match cut in the plot section too?!) I'm also unconvinced that this particular match cut is so famous it deserves being singled out in the lead at all. When I have time in the next few days I'll look at the article in more detail and see if I can come up with a better solution. Popcornduff (talk) 07:30, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
I am just pointing out that there are films where you can simple give the plot and films where all you can do is describe the visuals; 2001 falls somewhere in the middle, so it would not be odd to describe some visuals in the plot section, instead of trying to interpret them. Re: first paragraph - "learns to hunt for food" seems to be incorrect, they already know how to get food, "kills the leader of their rivals" - he's a leader? - "reclaiming the water hole"? we can only assume that. I would shorten it down to "one man-ape realizes how to use a bone as a tool and uses it as a weapon to drive their rivals from the water hole. The films story line shifts at that point (via a match cut) from a closeup of the bone being thrown into the air to an orbital satellite".
After adding some well known aspects of pre-production that had been missed I also noticed the odd layout of this article, namely it had no pre-production details, the section that exists is almost all about writing, which should be in a "development" section. That section should describe other aspects, and not just be 19 paragraphs devoted solely to writing. There seems to be allot of paragraph space devoted to minutia in the writing section such as an aspect described from Carl Sagan's POV, things that did not appear in the film (script changes in "HAL's breakdown", "Military nature of orbiting satellites"), and "Dialogue" - something that probably belongs in the plot section. Fountains of Bryn Mawr (talk) 21:45, 7 October 2016 (UTC)
Script changes and dialogue do not belong in the plot section. If there is something to say about these particular aspects then it is better to devote appropriate sections to them. Another film which springs to mind is Don't Look Now which is also heavily dependent on its cross-cutting and visual motifs and these are all dealt with in "analysis" and "themes" sections. The plot summary should not concern itself with how the story was filmed. If the story is ambiguous then obviously the summary should be careful to not interpret it, or if there is a readily accepted non-disputed interpretation then it should be cited to a secondary source. But back to the subject at hand, I don't think "The films story line shifts at that point (via a match cut) from a closeup of the bone being thrown into the air to an orbital satellite" is as eloquent as simplying saying "Millions of years later...". I think you are conflating understanding the plot with the understanding the film. WP:PLOTSUMNOT advises the "point of a summary is not to reproduce the experience—it's to explain the story." We see the early stages of human evolution in which a neolithic man fashions a weapon, and then the story simply picks up again a few million years later in the space age. The story would be exactly the same if the scene had simply dissolved to the future, with or without the bone being thrown into the air. Obviously the match-cut has huge thematic significance in how it is composed, but I don't think describing a visual cinematic technique adds to the reader's understanding of the actual story. Betty Logan (talk) 03:03, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
Seems to be some confusion here since I did not propose putting script changes and dialogue in the plot section. I don't think the reader has to understand either the plot or the film, the film just has to be described. WP:FILMPLOT specifically says "describe the events on screen as basically as possible" and we should not "make analytic, synthetic, interpretive, explanatory, or evaluative claims" about who we think did what. Fountains of Bryn Mawr (talk) 16:23, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
@ Popcornduff: WP:LEAD doesn't say that "there should be nothing discussed in the lead...that isn't in the article body too", it says "Apart from basic facts, significant information should not appear in the lead if it is not covered in the remainder of the article." So yes, we could -- assuming sources identify it as highly famous -- mention a the match cut in order to prepare the reader for subsequent mentions, especially if those mentions aren't very clear about the cut itself and its significance. "Readers should not be dropped into the middle of the subject from the first word; they should be eased into it." I agree that doesn't have to be done in the lede, but it would be nice to do so before the reader gets to the three existing references, don't you think? --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 06:46, 8 October 2016 (UTC) copy-edit 10:53, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

I've attempted to be constructive and add information about the match cut to the Editing section, using information and references, slightly rewritten, from the match cut article. I've also added the image. The article still has structural problems so it doesn't flow super-well with the existing text, but that's a separate issue, and the existing text didn't flow that well to begin with. I'll attempt to fix that next, but it's a bigger job. Popcornduff (talk) 09:10, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

Of course that was constructive! It makes a big difference, and I appreciate your tweak right at the top of the diff, which ensures that readers will encounter the explanation first, and then the cultural references. That's a very good thing whether or not we decide to mention the cut under Plot, and I hope that order is preserved in future versions (speaking of which, kudos on your intention to fix the larger structural problems). --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 10:47, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

Proposal for introducing match cut[edit]

A bone-club and an orbital platform: the two subjects of the iconic match cut in 2001: A Space Odyssey.

In order to introduce the reader to the iconic match cut from bone to satellite, I propose changing the start of the Plot section from this:

In an African desert millions of years ago, a tribe of man-apes face competition for a water hole from a rival tribe. They awaken to find a featureless black monolith has appeared before them. Guided in some fashion by the monolith, one man-ape realizes how to use a bone as a tool and weapon; the tribe learns to hunt for food, and kills one of their rivals, reclaiming the water hole.

Millions of years later, a Pan Am space plane carries Dr. Heywood Floyd ...

to this (changes highlighted):

In an African desert millions of years ago, a tribe of man-apes face competition for a water hole from a rival tribe. They awaken to find a featureless black monolith has appeared before them. Guided in some fashion by the monolith, one man-ape realizes how to use a bone as a tool and weapon; the tribe learns to hunt for food, and kills one of their rivals, reclaiming the water hole. Triumphant, a member of the victorious tribe throws his weapon-tool into the air as the scene shifts (via match cut) from the falling bone to an orbital satellite.

Millions of years later, In the space age, a Pan Am space plane carries Dr. Heywood Floyd ...


  • The reader instantly understands what the match cut is/does.
IOW, the reader gets its impact "as it happens", as the plot unfolds, just as the viewer does. Which is good for such an iconic moment.
  • Simplicity/efficiency. If it's introduced a later section, we'd have to recapitulate part of the plot to do so.
(Effectively: "Reader, remember that part in the plot when the cave-man threw the bone in the air? And then millions of years later, when the guy was on the moon shuttle? Well, in that transition, the bone turned into a satellite via a match cut.") struck in light of recent changes [2]
  • On objections that edits or scenes don't belong in the plot summary: occasionally, they do, if it benefits the reader.
FWIW, the version of the article that reached GA status included this proposed change.[3]
  • While the match cut indeed may needs more discussion (its significance, influence etc.), this proposal is only about where to introduce it.

Thanks for considering. --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 07:54, 8 October 2016 (UTC) strike/edit last bullet point in light of recent changes 10:25, 8 October 2016 (UTC); also strike 2nd bullet point for same reason 14:36, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

  • Additional point: As Fountains of Bryn Mawr noted above, edits and images are discussed in synopses of impressionistic, dialog-less films, e.g. Koyaanisqatsi, and 2001 lies somewhere on a continuum between such films and conventional films with dialog. (Would changing the section name from "Plot" to "Synopsis" alleviate some concerns?)

--Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 15:03, 8 October 2016 (UTC)

  • Oppose, for reasons given above, but to recap: 1) This is a drastic departure from what plot summaries are supposed to be for, and might actually be confusing ("Why are you suddenly telling me about editing in the plot summary?"). 2) There is no advantage to introducing the match cut here; it can be introduced - and what's more explained! - elsewhere in the article, under a relevant section (like Editing or Cinematography or something). Popcornduff (talk) 08:54, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
  • Extra comment: I hate to labour the point, but now that this is covered in the editing section, I think mentioning it in the plot section is not only inappropriate but completely unnecessary. Popcornduff (talk) 12:24, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose, obviously per my comments above. Relocating the image to the plot section would exacerbate the problem rather than resolve it IMO. Betty Logan (talk) 11:37, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
  • Support, plot sections specifically "describe the events on screen" and interpretations, such as what the action on the screen means and when we think things took place, do not need to be made at all. Fountains of Bryn Mawr (talk) 16:23, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose. I'm not dead set against this sort of thing, but I think production notes should generally be restricted to making the plot easier to understand. If you're just describing scene transitions, especially to highlight them as iconic, you're better off doing so elsewhere. One compromise I've used in the past is to include footnotes, such as <ref group=notes>The scene uses a [[match cut]] to transform the bone tool into a bone-shaped satellite.</ref> or whatever you want to say. That keeps the plot summary clean while including information that may be useful. Or don't do that. I don't care so much. If you think it's a stupid idea, you don't have to ping me when saying so. NinjaRobotPirate (talk) 19:40, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
  • Oppose: After reviewing WP:MOSFILM, it seems that, while the match cut in question may be notable, it falls into the category of "technical detail" and probably shouldn't belong in the plot summary. It could, of course, be included elsewhere in the article. –Matthew - (talk) 15:20, 13 October 2016 (UTC)

Discuss !votes and comments on proposal here.

  • @ Betty Logan - The proposal is only to add the indicated text, not the image. --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 13:08, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
  • @ Popcornduff - You commented that the proposal is a "drastic departure from what plot summaries are supposed to be for" -- I don't see that echoed in WP:FILMPLOT, and at any rate it's appropriate to IAR with guidelines if it helps the reader and otherwise does no harm. (I seriously doubt anyone is going to get confused and wonder "Why are you suddenly telling me about editing in the plot summary?" other than a subsample of Wikipedia editors!) :-) --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 13:08, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
I believe WP:PLOT rather plainly disagrees with you: "The plot summary is an overview of the film's main events, so avoid minutiae like dialogue, scene-by-scene breakdowns, individual jokes, and technical detail." A match cut is not a plot event, it is technical detail. Popcornduff (talk) 13:24, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
An iconic detail, yes, hence "common sense and the occasional exception". --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 15:01, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
A match cut actual is a plot event, that's how films build plots. But I don't think even that is important here. I favor description of the film over interpretation of whats going on on the screen. I see WP:PLOTSUMNOT being cited here but the next sentence is being skipped re: "If the original is non-linear or experimental in its structure, the article should state that fact in prose, not through regurgitation of the plot. For a confusing story, assume that some readers will look the story up because they didn't understand it. Just repeating what they saw isn't going to help." Mentioning the match cut where it occurs in the film plot helps a reader to understand the later analysis section and clues in a confused viewer who is looking up the film "what just happened after the monkey threw a bone in the air?.... oh.... its called a match cut.... oh.... here's more on it". Fountains of Bryn Mawr (talk) 16:23, 8 October 2016 (UTC)
I know being the guy who pisses on the compromise makes me even more of a dick, but... I don't see the need for a footnote either. The cut is now well-covered in the editing section. Why do we need any more?
I am frankly confused about why this one cut is deemed so worthy of special attention in the first place. Lots of things are notable and much-discussed about this film, such as the star gate sequence, the special effects, the music. These are all covered in detail in the article. There is no need to also mention them in the plot section, in a footnote or otherwise. So why are we all so fixated on this one cut? I'm baffled. Popcornduff (talk) 03:09, 14 October 2016 (UTC)
IMHO it would be a tendency towards common sense over blind adherence to what some editors think a guideline says. The job of this article is to inform the reader by describing the film, not read like a chat room full of film fans who have seen the movie. For example, reading the current version of the article, does the reader even get a clue as to where a match cut took place or what or where a "Star Gate" sequence is? Fountains of Bryn Mawr (talk) 14:32, 14 October 2016 (UTC)
But what common sense? In what universe is it "common sense" to single out an editing detail in a plot section? Isn't it actually "common sense" to describe editing in the Editing section? I am honestly baffled by this entire proposal. I cannot fathom what problem it is trying to solve, and why, if it is a problem, there isn't also a problem with us not mentioning everything else in the Plot section, too.
Though I don't think it's particularly important, I have now edited the existing match cut information to indicate the point at which it comes in the film; does that solve the problem? Popcornduff (talk)
I'm with Popcornduff (pls correct me if I misinterpret you!): leave it out of the plot summary, no footnote, and discuss in the editing section -- it looks fine there, we even have the still shots to highlight it further. Time to put this one to bed I think. Cheers, Ian Rose (talk) 15:08, 14 October 2016 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── I think there are some good arguments both pro and con, which implies a compromise. A footnote respects both sides: it's likely to help some readers, but does no harm.

Why highlight this "editing detail"?

  • "cinema's most famous jump-cut" [sic] (The National Society of Film Critics’ 100 Essential Films) [4]
  • "the greatest shot transition in movie history" (Salon) [5]
  • "one of the most famous transitions in film history" ( [6]
  • etc. [7] [8] [9] [10] [11]
  • Roger Ebert: "The opening sequence is brilliant. If it could be shown as an educational film, it would explain man's development as a tool-using animal more clearly than any number of textbooks. ... Kubrick cuts from this most simple tool, a club, to a most complex one, a space ship. The prehistoric bone is thrown up into the air and becomes a shuttle rocket on its way to a space station. Could anything be clearer? Here are both extremes of man's tool-using stage." [12]

If that's not worth highlighting, I don't know what is! :-)

Finally, remember Fountains of Bryn Mawr's point that that this film lies on a spectrum between typical plot-driven films and purely imagery-based ones such as Koyaanisqatsi and Un Chien Andalou. The latter are summarized not with "Plot" but with "Synopsis" sections (e.g. [13][14]), which routinely include descriptions of scenes and edits. Roger Ebert makes the same point, essentially saying that the film's story exists "apart from dialog and plot", [15], and that it "makes its statement almost completely in visual terms" [16] and that it's "in many respects a silent film" that "creates its effects essentially out of visuals and music." [17] Ebert's take IMO is strong enough to justify changing the section name to "Synopsis", which would moot objections about the match cut belonging there. That's worth considering, but OTOH, what's in a name? It still should be mentioned, and a footnote is OK imo, if only just. --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 18:13, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

P.S. @ Popcornduff This doesn't imo have the same impact but certainly helps --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 18:46, 17 October 2016 (UTC)
Cool, but 1) all that information can be covered in the editing section 2) you could dig up a bunch of equivalent sources and quotes for all kinds of notable things about this movie - it's a landmark of cinema - and you're not arguing for those to be in the plot section too. Popcornduff (talk) 00:53, 18 October 2016 (UTC)
Because, per above, it should be a Synopsis section. "The bone is thrown into the air and dissolves into a space shuttle" (Ebert) [18] - that image, that flash-forward, belongs up front in any short synopsis of the film. Bold edit: change section name to "Synopsis" and change text per proposal above, but wikilinking, fwiw: "as the scene shifts from the falling bone..." [19] --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 13:29, 24 October 2016 (UTC)

Claimed influences[edit]

The Road to the Stars influence claim seems to be opinion of a anonymous personal website with no supporting material so I have removed it. Universe influence is cited but the more dramatic claims were a little thinly referenced. The 1964 World's Fair movie To the Moon and Beyond has been totally missed. Rewording all of this. Fountains of Bryn Mawr (talk) 19:27, 10 September 2016 (UTC)

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Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 08:37, 17 September 2016 (UTC)

Suggested edits to the plot summary[edit]

I added some detail to the plot summary and it was promptly deleted as being "too detailed." Anyone who wishes can look at the revision history to see what I added (and in a couple instances, corrected).

Needless to say, I disagree strongly with the reversion, and see nothing on the talk page about "recent plot discussions" germane to the edits I made.

Nsayer (talk) 02:03, 17 October 2016 (UTC)

Sorry, but I agree that your "detail" is unnecessary and the reversion should stand. We risk being bogged down in detail. Regards, David J Johnson (talk) 09:47, 17 October 2016 (UTC)
@Nsayer I agree that the additions are (at least mostly) unnecessary; the section is already on the longish side, as the hidden note mentions. I'm not sure your edit corrected any important errors; plot sections necessarily omit, simplify and gloss details in order to accomodate length constraints. (FWIW, this tradeoff bothered me for a long time; my natural preference is to err on the side of detail, and I still find it harder to prune than to add stuff, even though both are necessary skills.) Given that caveat, do you still feel there are errors that need fixing? Note that there's an article "Interpretations of 2001: A Space Odyssey" that delves much deeper into detail; some of your points may be useful there, or may already be there. --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 18:35, 17 October 2016 (UTC)
P.S. This imo is a good example of an edit that prunes/simplifies, and in fact improves accuracy. --Middle 8 (tc | privacyCOI) 18:42, 17 October 2016 (UTC)