I've come to have a rant/investigation about the continuity errors of Season 5. One of the main talking points so far this season on the wiki, the forums, and IRC is the seemingly increased number of continuity errors, and the importance of the events are that wrong. Of course, it's not really hard to work out why: Time travel, multiple storylines, and a lot of wrapping up to be done. But here's a close look at some of the interesting ones. (Of course, if you don't really care about this sort of thing, don't bother)
Episode: "Because You Left"
Error: On the zodiac raft, Steve Jenkins was wearing a backpack immediately before the Island moved in "There's No Place Like Home, Parts 2 & 3", but when the sky turns normal again in this episode, his backpack is missing. Furthermore, a bearded background extra has been replaced by Neil "Frogurt", and another background extra sitting next to him has disappeared.
Reason: Most likely due to background casting change, so it's not that big of a deal. However, it would've made perfect sense if Frogurt was just on the beach instead of him randomly appearing on the Zodiac.
Episode: "The Little Prince"
Error: The light from the hatch the left-behinders see from afar looks more like the bright white light from the hatch after it had been blown open as seen in "Man of Science, Man of Faith", rather than the dim yellow light from the hatch window Locke was able to look straight into at the end of "Deus Ex Machina".
Reason: Gregg Nations at The Fuselage actually explained this. "Sometimes you tell production you want something to be a certain way, but what comes back in dailies isn't exactly what you'd hoped for." Source. In the end, it would've meant a whole reshoot, which means more costs and more time. I would be kinda annoyed if they spent a lot of their budget on getting the Hatch light exactly right.
Episode: "This Place is Death"
Error: Danielle gives the date of leaving Tahiti as November 15th 1988. In "Pilot, Part 2", Sayid says the message Danielle left had been playing for 16 years and 5 months as of the day following the crash of flight 815 (September 23rd 2004). Furthermore in "Through the Looking Glass" we also find out that Danielle had left the message at the radio tower 3 days before Alex was born which would have been 2 months after Danielle first arrived on the island. Therefore the message had been playing for approximately 15 years and 7 months.
Reason: Well, Sayid had a pretty complex calculation to do...
Error: Locke's head is resting on a different pillow and he is wearing a different necktie than in "There's No Place Like Home, Parts 2 & 3" in the coffin.
Reason: That's just lazy.
Episode: "The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham"
Error:Santa Rosa Mental Health Institute is portrayed in earlier episodes as a place Jack can stop by after work to visit Hurley. However in this episode, the Santa Rosa Mental Health Institute is identified as being in Santa Rosa, CA. which is over 400 miles from the hospital where Jack works in Santa Monica, CA. While the city of Santa Rosa, CA is mainly a large metropolitan area, there are numerous foothills and outlying undeveloped territory as the mental institute is shown to be set in the countryside.
Reason: Interesting, maybe they always meant for the institute to be there but just did a lack of research early on.
Episode: "The Life and Death of Jeremy Bentham"
Error: The content of Locke's conversations with the O6 and Walt seem to be very different to what they had previously described.
Reason: The pessimist would say laziness/lack of research, the optimist would say it was time constraints, and we didn't see everything. I think both.
Error: The little girl that Daniel presumes to be Charlotte exists in 1974, yet Ben previously mentioned that Charlotte was born in 1979.
Reason: An actress who interfered with the writing of the show. The March 19, 2009 podcast revealed that the original script for "Confirmed Dead" stated that Charlotte was born in 1970. Damon and Carlton said that Rebecca Mader, the actress who played Charlotte, changed the year (on her own) to 1979 to correspond to her own birth year. The error was not fixed in editing, though Damon and Carlton admit now that it should have been 1970 all along.
Error(?): A mystery woman appears behind Sun in the processing center.
Reason: May not actually be an error. It was this mystery that inspired me to write this post. Personally, I think it's some really poor on-set and post-production work, and some random production assistant got caught in the frame. Others think it's deliberately someone we know Claire, Charlotte, even Libby. If it is an Easter Egg, it's a damn good one.
Here's another two of my favourite "possible errors" from seasons past.
Episode: "The Man From Tallahassee"
Error(?): Locke comes back wet when he "detonates" the sub.
Reason: Many fans have speculated, and still do, that Locke only blew up the jetty and is saving the submarine for some other time. Personally, I think he did blow it up otherwise we would surely know by now...but the theories continue.
Episode: "Confirmed Dead"
Error(?): In Miles' flashback, the picture frames in the home change in style after he comes down the stairs.
Reason: I really don't know, and would love some closure from Darlton. (Hint hint, Ama) If it was a Faraday/Desmond scene, I would immediately call deliberate, but it was Miles. He's pretty much a "redshirt with a twist", it's been one and a half seasons and he's had no real character development. Another weird point is that all the pictures and their positioning are the same, only the frames have changed. Weird, but that's Lost for ya.