Talk About Blyton!

Famous Five – Bloopers?

October 14, 2008 – Ilsa says: On reading Smuggler's Top yet again, I notice that when the decision is made for the children to go to Smuggler's Top, the day begins early. Aunt Fanny helps with the packing while George disappears, and then they have an early lunch. After a long while in the car they stop for lunch at 12. 30!! I realise breakfast may have been at the crack of dawn, but surely an "early lunch" couldn't have been called that unless it was at least 11am. (and I think it would probably have been later). Piling into the car, stopping to pick up Timmy and then a "long drive" all in an hour and a half?
Fatty says... Fatty says: Looks like you've spotted a blooper here, Ilsa.
January 25, 2009 – Terry says: It's a bit like Five Go To Billycock Hill where we meet the mysterious men supposedly interested in butterflies but seem to have an ulterior purpose. Yet their significance is never explained and they are not tied in with the resolution of the mystery and conclusion of the book. However, I thnk the biggest 'blooper' is Five Are Together Again where the well built lads Dick and Julian in books such as Five Go To Mystery Moor suddenly reverse in age according to the Eileen Soper illustrations. The Five also revert as a group to being younger, and the story goes backwards with a childish narrative inserted into the story, redolent of the Five's early days rather than the correct timeframe that should be in this final story.
January 29, 2009 – rogoz says: Terry may note that it seems Blyton most likely didn't construct novels top-down and when done as serials, possibly only one chapter ahead was typed. Her methods of composition were most unusual. This would explain plot dead-ends where the story turns in another direction. An example of this is in ' Together Again ' where Julian draws up fake plans which aren't used later. Then the ending is rushed where Georgina has to quickly recount her improbable adventure on the Island - the high point of the story!
November 11, 2009 – Jayde says: On the cover of Five go to Kirrin Island again, If you have a close look, you will notice that George is looking out to Kirrin with the wrong side of the Telescope. A simple mistake.
November 13, 2009 – April June says: Jayde, I did notice that George was looking through the wrong end of the telescope. I wonder how that happened? Perhaps a mistake on the illustrator's part?
Fatty says... Fatty says: This is very well documented. If you do a little research, you will find out! ;-)
December 21, 2010 – Jayde says: Have you noticed that in Five on Kirrin Island again, they start calling Alf James? Im not sure if Enid Blyton got mixed up, but up until Five On Kirrin Island again the call him Alf the fisher boy dont they? Then its switched to James. Have you noticed it? Any more mistakes in Five on the sixth book?
Fatty says... Fatty says: I have moved your post to the Bloopers thread, so that kind of answers your question!
May 14, 2013 – EB's GF says: I have to point out the biggest error Enid ever did. On pg. No. 41 of Five Go To Mystery moor. There is a line that says 'George looked nice, because her curly hair went with a skirt and blouse very well. '. Well how could George wear a skirt when she always likes to be a boy and always wears boys' clothes? That is really the biggest error in the Famous Five.
Fatty says... Fatty says: If you read a little more carefully, you will see that it is not an error at all. Girls had to change into a dress for their evening mealtime, it was one of the rules of the riding stables. Incidentally, in the early H&S editions, the passage can be found on page 39.
May 15, 2013 – Nigel Rowe says: Just goes to show, read and understand before you leap into attack!
Fatty says... Fatty says: Indeed it does, old friend!
May 15, 2013 – Jeni says: Yes, Fatty and Nigel. As Kevin says - jumping to conclusions is the worst kind of exercise! I am quick to find errors in books, and I can safely say I have never found an error in a Blyton book.
Fatty says... Fatty says: There are a few well known bloopers, Alf/James, Joan/Joanna and so on, but nothing as bad as EB'sGF thought!
May 15, 2013 – Saky says: Fatty, I didn't understand what you meant by: This is very well documented. If you do a little research, you will find out! ; -) A quick Google search revealed nothing.
Fatty says... Fatty says: The world doesn't begin and end with Google! ;-) You can see the cover in question HERE.
November 17, 2014 – Neal says: Another error I remember was in "Five on Kirrin Island Again" they repeatedly referred to (and visited) the stone room in the castle, where they first thought Uncle Quentin's workshop was. However in "Five Run Away Together" (3 books previously) they had planned on living in the same room only to discover it had caved in! Looks like Blyton managed to rebuild it somewhere along the line!
December 31, 2014 – Evie M says: While we're on the subject, another blooper I remember is in Five On A Hike Together, where Anne and Dick stay with that old woman. She says she is deaf, but she hears her son coming and tells them to go. How could she hear him if she is deaf??????????
Daisy says... Daisy says: She didn't hear him coming into the room, Evie, he just walked in whilst Dick was calling for Anne.
February 21, 2015 – Jo says: Hi, Have enjoyed reading The Famous Five again with some of the pupils I tutor. Can anyone explain why it is George's mother whose family owned the island and, at one time surrounding land, and yet the surname of Fanny, Quentin and George is Kirrin? Kirrin would have been Fanny's maiden name if the island took the family name - and the farmhouse, of course. Also, in the late Famous Five, 'Five Are Together Again', why is Timmy waiting at home for George to return from school? I thought he went to school with her. In this book, the cousins chat about Timmy always knowing when George will be coming, so it must have been going on for some time this business of Timmy being left at home - in a kennel no less!! (thought he had the run of the house) Did Enid Blyton forget do you think, or did she just want to change things up a bit, and didn't give an explanation of why. In Five Have A Mystery to Solve, there is an explained change, Julian and family have moved house nearer to George. Perhaps Enid Blyton planned a whole succession of further stories and was setting the scene for some more possibilities. I think George is a very convincing character, so finely modeled as to maybe based on the author herself, who knows, and very entertaining are the scenes in which she is cross with characters like Henry and Jo who want to boys. The relationship between George and Timmy is very well described, I think, and generally good is how other pets help the children and use their powers to do more than humans can do. You can see how kids got a lot of pleasure out of understanding animals in those day, although things were very much freer, clearly. Timmy seems quite a wild, not to say dangerous dog, when enemies are around. Can't see him being allowed off a lead in today's times. But you could write a whole article on what was different then: children rowing out to see in a boat with a hole, and against currents; caves open to the public with only a sign saying 'Keep to the roped tunnels.' Hope somebody has some answers to my questions. Thanks.
Fatty says... Fatty says: There are more questions than answers, unfortunately. Enid made quite a few bloopers which have been discussed at length on this site as well as the Society Forums.
September 4, 2016 – amy says: In Five on Kirrin Island Again at chapter 12 the children examine the old map of the island which George still has stored in the old lead lined box. In the first book they are lucky enough to take a tracing of the map before the box and map are sold by Uncle Quentin. Did they get it back when the gold thieves were caught?
Daisy says... Daisy says: It's been a while since I read these books so sadly don't know the answer to your question, Amy. Maybe someone who has read the books recently may know the answer.
September 24, 2016 – hammy says: Hello, an answer to amy: I have just re-read the first book (Five on a Treasure Island) and it is not mentioned that the children got back the map. I supposed it can be assumed?
December 29, 2016 – Padré says: This is not a blooper made by Enid Blyton but by one of the meddlers who insist on "updating" the books. I have the 1970s Knight edition of Five Go To Billycock Hill. At one point, a man claiming to be one of the butterfly men gives Dick fifty pence for a butterfly. Dick gives it to the old woman, Mrs Jane. This is clearly an update as there was no such thing as fifty pence at the time the book was written - decimalisation didn't come in until 1971. However, the "updater" didn't do a very thorough job as later, Julian talking to Dick refers to "the five shillings you gave her". That must have been what was in the original book. Five shillings actually translates to twenty-five pence in new money, but I don't consider this to be a mistake as the updater probably decided to double the amount to allow for inflation.
Daisy says... Daisy says: Many of Enid's books have been updated, and the 'money' converted, it's a sign of the times we have to live with. If it means readers of today will read Enid's wonderful books, then it's all worth it.
December 30, 2016 – Paul says: Anne's startled reaction to television, which wouldn't make sense to later generations of children, was also removed in the 1970s edits.
May 9, 2017 – Tony says: I'm currently reading the Kirrin Island stories to my grade 4 and they picked up on Alf/James straight away and the telescope going the wrong way.
Daisy says... Daisy says: I hope they love the stories though!
June 15, 2017 – Faya says: In Five go to Mystery Moor, on page 11, it says that 10 kids were to sleep in the stables, among which the Five. Then, some pages later, it's only Julian and Dick that sleeps in the stables! Isn't that a major error in Blyton's books or am I just wrong? Please help me clarify. Thank you.
June 18, 2017 – Paul says: Shouldn't we have a general thread for bloopers in all stories and series, not just the FF?
Buster says... Buster says: Don't see why not.

Fatty says: This is being considered at the moment, Paul.
October 21, 2017 – Nandita says: Hey guys Famous Five 21 (Five are together again), it's mentioned that George always waits for term end as Timmy stays at home but in all the earlier novels, he went to school with George and in the second book Gerige herself said that she wouldn't go to school of Timmy wasn't allowed. They haven't mentioned the school rules being changed and George wouldn't just accept it. I would be glad of any clarity provided.
Fatty says... Fatty says: Yes, most odd. It was written when Enid had become ill, so maybe she just forgot.
November 17, 2017 – David says: I always wondered what Julian, Dick and Annes' surname was? I remember in Five Get Into A Fix that their mother was referred to as Mrs Barnard. But I am sure they were all introduced as Kirrins in another book. Any thoughts?
Daisy says... Daisy says: You are right, about their surname being mentioned as Barnard, but I think they were intended as Kirrins. This discussion has come up many times especially on the Enid Blyton Society website. Enid Blyton Society

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