Whether it's inaccurate "True Detective" casting news, made up "Game of Thrones" fan theories, celebrity death hoaxes or anything in between, the world of TV is full of untrue rumors. Amazingly, some of these rumors get passed on so often that we just accept them as fact, no matter how ridiculous.
When Lucille Ball first came to Hollywood, she was a natural brunette and then dyed her hair blond as she pursued acting. Later in her career, Ball adopted the color she was known for on "I Love Lucy," but, as her longtime stylist Irma Kusely explains, it wasn't red:
"It's apricot, but a lot of people think it's red. It's not red at all," she told Emmy archivist Karen Herman in 2001. "It's a golden apricot. [I used] regular hair dye when I did her own hair. And then I used a henna rinse for a balance, which she was famous for."
Timmy, Lassie's second owner in the series, got into a lot of trouble during seven seasons, including getting trapped in a mine, almost getting shot and being threatened by an escaped elephant, but Timmy himself, actor Jon Provost, revealed in his autobiography that he was never trapped in a well.
Additionally, in 17 seasons of the show, the only main character to fall down a well was Lassie.
Fans often point to the Superman magnet and statue in the "Seinfeld" apartment as evidence that this has to be true, but those items didn't appear in the show until Seasons 4 and 5, respectively. Other references that were supposedly inserted into the show can be called into question, too. For instance, Teri Hatcher, who played Lois Lane in "Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman," appeared on "Seinfeld" before "L&C" ever premiered.
It's true that Jerry Seinfeld is a big Superman fan and often made references to the Man of Steel in his show, but a variety of "Seinfeld" and Superman resources point out that there is not a visual reference to the Man of Steel in every show and many claim there aren't obscure references in every episode either.
This lie was possibly started when Oprah, who was a fan of "The Andy Griffith Show," once asked the question, "Where are the black people?"
Though it can be noted that only one black actor, Rockne Tarkington, ever had a speaking role on the show during its entire eight season run, there are many examples of black Mayberry residents walking in the background of shots.
It's a rumor that continues to be spread through the media; however, "Sesame Street" dispelled speculation in a 2011 statement:
"Bert and Ernie are best friends. They were created to teach preschoolers that people can be good friends with those who are very different from themselves. Even though they are identified as male characters and possess many human traits and characteristics (as most Sesame Street Muppets do), they remain puppets, and do not have a sexual orientation."
"Beam me up, Scotty" is one of the most widely misquoted lines in television history. The "Star Trek" series features characters using different variations of the phrase, such as, "Beam us up!" and, "Scotty, beam us up, fast," but it is never said in the exact order everyone likes to quote.
"Beam me up, Scotty" became so popular that the actor who portrayed Scotty, James Doohan, used it in the title for his autobiography.
Mister Ed's human co-star Alan Young actually started the rumor and came clean on the reason why during a later interview:
For the kids. They would write and ask if the horse really could talk! Al Simon and Arthur Lubin, the producers, suggested we keep the method a secret because they thought kids would be disappointed if they found out the technical details of how it was done. So I made up the peanut butter story, and everyone bought it.
In reality, Mister Ed moved his lips due to a piece of nylon placed under his tongue, and he eventually learned to do it on command.
Much like "Beam me up, Scotty," this misquote from Jesse Pinkman in a Season 1 episode of "Breaking Bad" is generally accepted as being true and has been spread around the Internet as a popular meme. Aaron Paul actually says, "Yeah, Mr. White. Yeah, science."
In addition, Pinkman is known for saying the word "bitch" throughout the series, but it may surprise some that he said the phrase only 50 times total in all five seasons.
Widely accepted by "South Park" fans as a fact, South Park Studios finally set the record straight:
This is probably one of South Park’s greatest myths. And despite what you heard through the alien-probe grapevine, the answer is actually no. Although Visitors do appear in SOME episodes, they definitely are not hidden in every single episode. But that doesn’t mean they don’t pop up randomly — like driving limos in “Cow Days”, or going drag in the crowd of a beauty pageant (in “Dead Celebrities”).
As to why they appear at all, "South Park" tells us they work for a universal TV company and fix satellite dishes hidden in the rectums of Earthlings.
Davy Jones actually admitted he started the rumor sometime after the Tate-LaBianca Murders, jokingly telling a reporter Manson auditioned for a role on "The Monkees."
Manson had a lot of connections to the 1960s music scene, even living for a time with Beach Boys member Dennis Wilson, so the lie gained widespread acceptance. In truth, Manson was in prison during the time the show was auditioning, so he couldn't have been there.
On February 9, 1964, around 73 million people tuned in to watch The Beatles' live appearance on "The Ed Sullivan Show." The rumor that crime fell during the show can be traced back to Washington Post editor B.F. Henry, who wrote:
During the hour they were on Ed Sullivan's show, there wasn't a hubcap stolen in America.
Though the phrase seems like a compliment, Snopes reports that Henry meant it as a way to highlight the perception that The Beatles were a fad that appealed to the "worst of American youth" and their fans had probably stopped committing crimes for a bit to watch the show.