For those not familiar (or no longer familiar?), the Mandela Effect is the theory that we live in a set of parallel universes and that sometimes, like in the movie the Matrix, things in history are changed (or universes are merged) and large groups of people remember something in history that is technically not true. Named after the large group of people that recall South African Apartheid hero Nelson Mandela dying in prison in the 80’s, there are countless/growing examples of this (and even a sub-Reddit dedicated to it) which means that things are totally still being changed around us. Either that or people just “misremember” things that are easy to “mispell” (as is the case with many of these, as you’ll see). Either way, it’s a really neat psychological phenomenon. Considering the fact that high ranking people like Elon Musk, who think we’re more likely than not, living in a simulation, it could be true!
15. Fruit Loops
One of the most popular (and delicious) breakfast (or all-day) cereals are those delicious circles promoted by Toucan Sam himself, Fruit Loops. Except… They’re not Fruit Loops at all, they’re actually spelled Froot Loops, don’t believe me? Just go check in your kitchen (or failing that, in your couch cushions!). While some examples of the Mandela Effect can be chalked up to people missing a letter or two, this one would be pretty hard to miss as it just looks so off that it draws your attention to it almost immediately. So, that must mean that it’s a recent change to the Matrix and something that will probably get erased from this article after you’re done reading it (a Mandela Effect within an article about a Mandela Effect? Meta!).
14. “Mirror, Mirror on the Wall…”
One of the most famous lines in film history comes from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, the Disney masterpiece that is still as popular today as when it came out over 50 years ago, the only problem is… That’s not what the Evil Witch says in the movie! She actually says “Magic Mirror on the wall”, despite the fact that recent adaptations of this story like Snow White and the Huntsman or the Huntsman Winters War have had the line start out with “Mirror, Mirror”, so which is it?!? I know, I’ll ask my mirror!
13. Jiffy Peanut Butter
What does it mean for humans as a race that we’re so excited to stuff our faces with any type of food that we can’t be bothered to remember the actual name of that food over time? Tons of people remember scarfing down Jiffy Peanut Butter and even an ad campaign that took advantage of the name with a mom who made snacks “In a Jiffy”, so next time you go grocery shopping try to not freak out when you stop in the Peanut Butter section of the sandwich aisle. There’s always Skippy! Or is it just Skip?
12. Sex in the City
For some reason scientists still can’t figure out, Sex and the City was a movement in and of itself in the early 00’s that is still (potentially) churning out films. The only problem is, most of us remember the title of the show to be Sex IN the City, which has been backed up with actual merchandise that people still own online, which is something that is rare in the Mandela Effect universe. While that may just mean that a lot of people bought counterfeit HBO merchandise when they were younger, it could also mean that even our robotic overlords couldn’t be brought to watch Carrie Bradshaw and friends talk shop over cosmos, which actually makes a lot of sense.
11. Interview with a Vampire…
Similar to the Sex and the City debacle comes one from the film that Brad Pitt hated filming more than being married to Angelina Jolie whilst sober, Interview with a Vampire. The problem with that, outside of Pitt’s melancholy performance, is that the movie is actually called Interview with THE Vampire, which makes sense in terms of the plot of the movie (if you ignore Tom Cruises appearance at the end, I guess, even though he wasn’t really giving an interview more just turning Christian Slater into a Vampire. Sigh, the early 90’s, where Christian Slater was on the same level as Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt). Either way, this has to be Interview with A Vampire. It has to be.
10. Hello, Clarice
One of the most quoted movie characters of all-time is Dr. Hannibal Lecter, played by Anthony Hopkins in the 1991 classic movie Silence of the Lambs. There are two general quotes that people use from that movie, the first being the “Liver and fava beans” line and the second being the much more standard “Hello, Clarice”. The problem is… Dr. Lecter never says that in the movie! When he first meets Clarice in the movie he simply says “Good morning” and that’s it! Considering he’s only in the movie for less than 20 minutes there’s really not that many opportunities for pleasantries anyway. So, like the Star Wars shocker below, it’s looking like the robots that run our reality just don’t like when people ruin movies by quoting them incessantly (where were they when Borat came out?).
9. Sinbad the Genie
This one got so popular that it actually ended up willing itself (back) into existence! Sinbad, the comedian who gained fame by winning Star Search, made a few movies in the 90’s and then disappeared. Many will say that perhaps people are confusing Sinbad with Shaquille O’Neal, but have you seen Shaq? I doubt people would confuse him with Sinbad. So, when people started adamantly stating that they remember seeing a genie movie with Sinbad in it, the word got around to the comedian and he ended up filming a short, hilarious “What If”. And let me tell you, we’re all missing out by not having this actual movie gathering dust in our pile of VHS’ tapes.
8. It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood… Or is it?
Millions upon millions of us remember watching Mr. Rogers in his Neighborhood while we were growing up, wishing we could go visit and change from our street sweater into our house sweater. But apparently the lyrics to the song we all grew up singing aren’t what we remember. The world famous lyric isn’t “It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood…” but rather “It’s a beautiful day in THIS neighborhood”… What? That sounds so wrong that it tastes bad! How dare our robotic overlord sully the memory of Mr. Rogers like that!
7. C-3P0 Isn’t All Gold?
The first of two Star Wars related ME’s, think back to the original trilogy and the annoying protocol droid C-3P0, make a mental image of him… What color was he? If you answered “Gold” you’d be only partially correct as apparently he was never solid gold! According to those sheisters who control our reality, 3P0 has had a SILVER leg all this time! Like the Sex and the City debacle apparently not all memorabilia was changed in time and you can still find a ton of original 3PO stuff in all-gold (and not to break character here but that’s probably why people are confused), which means that those cheap plastic toys your parents bought you in the early 80’s may be worth even more than they already were!
6. We Are the Champions… Of the World
Queen was one of the first arena rock bands and it’s their song We Are the Champions that helped solidify them as one of the best bands of their/that era. However, the song doesn’t end like many of us remember it ending as it apparently doesn’t contain the ending “… We are the Champions… Of the WORLD!”. Tons of people remember hearing it that way years ago and the fact that it doesn’t end that way actually takes away from it’s brilliance, so the next time you’re watching The Mighty Ducks, see if your copy got through the robotic overlords’ Quality Control Process and still has the original lyrics.
5. Curious George’s Tail
It’s perhaps not a surprise that many of these revolve around things that you remember from your childhood. Your grasp on the language you grew up speaking isn’t 100% and because of that your mind makes a lot of assumptions based on limited information, but that doesn’t explain something like the case of Curious George’s missing tail! Ask 100 people and half will remember Curious George with a tail. There are countless examples of people drawing him as such or even going as George for Halloween and adding a tail, and that’s probably because Monkey’s have tails and George is described as a Monkey (despite clearly being an ape), so, what gives?
4. Pikachu’s Tail
What gives, indeed? Speaking of cartoon characters we loved as children and their tails, apparently Pikachu’s tail is ALL YELLOW (and doesn’t have a black tip, similar to his/her ears).We know what you’re thinking, this can’t be true! The problem is that many of us would have to dust off our OG editions of Pokemon Red or Blue and the Gameboys that operated it to double check and while cartoons do exist that show that Pika does in fact have an all yellow tail, those are clearly a lot easier to change than a video game. So, perhaps the evidence is out there… in our basements… gathering
3. Luke, I am Your Father
The Second Star Wars related Mandela Effect comes from The Empire Strikes Back and could very well be the most famous quote and twist of all time. You all know it, the “Luke, I am your Father” line that we all grew up teasing our friends Luke with. The issue here is that the line is actually, “NO, I am your Father”, which would make sense if James Earl Jones (The voice of Darth Vader himself) even remembered it that way. There are countless interviews out there (Check YouTube!) where he recites the line as “Luke, I am Your Father” which is what makes this whole thing so interesting! Like the “Hello, Clarice” thing. I’m sure the explanation is that people are attempting to describe the scene while quoting it, so it has some context. But still, the fact that so many people remember things incorrectly, and angrily, is quite the psychological phenomenon and really makes you wonder how much of your reality is real!
2. Berenstein Bears
Those of you that grew up in North America will remember the family of plucky Bears that Stan and Jan Berenstain wrote about to teach us life lessons while disappointing us on our Birthdays. Many, many people, including the author of this piece recall the book being called the Berenstein Bears and maybe that’s because of the way it’s pronounced but it just didn’t make any sense any other way. Some of us specifically remember writing “No BERENSTEIN BEARS BOOKS” on our List for Birthday Presents. So, the only explanation is that at some point Bears from another universe seeped into ours, killing the Berenstein Bears and teaching them the one lesson they weren’t prepared for.
1. Nelson Mandela
The one that started it all! The Mandela Effect is named after Nelson Mandela, the Civil Rights leader and eventual President of South Africa who spent decades in jail for protesting Apartheid. The problem is that many, many people actually remember him dying in prison and not eventually leaving and becoming the leader that many of us know today. So it’s really, really creepy, especially considering that this is one of the few that doesn’t involve simple spelling or aesthetic memory issues. It is because of this example, which is probably the best we have (yet), that we can believe that we are indeed living in some sort of simulation or set of parallel universes.