10 TV Hoaxes That Fooled Everyone

No, The Simpsons and Futurama didn't predict the pandemic.

marilyn monroe

Despite everyone having all the world's information readily available at their fingertips and in their pockets, the ubiquity of the Internet and social media in our lives has also made it shockingly easily for even smart people to be hoodwinked by hoaxes and "fake news."

In an overwhelming sea of information, it can be difficult to separate the fact from the fiction, and while that certainly be used to harmful political ends, it can also be exploited somewhat more fancifully in the world of pop-culture.

Any sufficiently popular TV series is destined to be saddled with fans who, for whatever reason, want to interrupt the flow of news with their own manufactured nonsense.

Whether these hoaxes pre-date the modern Internet entirely or have taken full advantage of our congested, oversaturated news feeds today, pranksters managed to convince potentially millions of fans that these non-truths were sheer fact.

From hoaxes about "lost" episodes of classic TV shows to claims of impending lawsuits being filed against beloved series, and even TV that eerily "predicted" the current global predicament, these 10 claims are all impressively, frighteningly convincing bull...

10. There's A Lost Episode Where Chandler Dies - Friends

marilyn monroe

These days, any half-talented video editor can repurpose existing filmed footage to create a convincing hoax, as YouTuber Dogfood proved in 2016 when he released clips from a supposedly "lost" episode of Friends.

For years, rumours had been doing the rounds among the fanbase that an episode called "The One Where Chandler Dies" was shot but ultimately canned.

Per its title, the episode would explore a hypothetical scenario where Chandler (Matthew Perry) dies and the five remaining friends would then learn to cope with his demise.

In a credibility-straining twist, Chandler would also appear throughout the episode as a ghost, watching how his friends try to move on with their lives.

Dogfood decided to bring the idea to life through his cleverly crafted hoax video, taking clips from various Friends episodes, re-editing them, and even adding some passable visual effects to further sell the illusion.

Proving the ease with which a lie can be sold to the masses via social media, the video quickly went viral, with more casual Friends fans failing to recognise the recycled footage, truly believing it to be a discarded episode.

As easily noticeable as the fakery is to the most die-hard Friends fans, Dogfood is to be commended for putting so much effort into the ruse and ultimately fooling so many.


Stay at home dad who spends as much time teaching his kids the merits of Martin Scorsese as possible (against the missus' wishes). General video game, TV and film nut. Occasional sports fan. Full time loon.