Land around Whit's End controversy

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The Land around Whit's End controversy is one of the most talked about Odyssey goofs, this one deals with conflicting reports about who owns the land around Whit's End.

Episodes

  • 019: Recollections -- Quite obviously in this episode, Whit says he will buy the "Fillmore Recreation Center and its adjoining land..."
  • 168: The Curse -- Whit himself tells Connie and Eugene "you don't remember that I don't own the land around Whit's End, [I only own] the building?"
  • 327: Moving Targets -- Glossman says "the land Whit's End sits on is owned by the city. The building belongs to you, that's all." Some have argued that Glossman was lying (which would be very in-character for him), but this doesn't make much sense because the council confirms this "fact" in 329: The Return.
  • 329: The Return -- Jason and Jack discuss their thoughts on Whit buying the place. Jason says he can't imagine why his dad didn't buy the land around the building. Jack says it was probably all he could manage. While this conversation is interesting, it probably isn't crucial since Jack and Jason weren't around at the time and may not know for certain either way about Whit's End.

Plausible Solution

If looking for a plausible answer, there is perhaps an option. Maybe between the time that Fillmore Recreation Center was bought and the time of "The Curse", through some sort of legal wrangling, Whit had to give up ownership of the land. Perhaps he wanted to sell it back for some reason. The point, however, is that Whit said from his own mouth he did not own the land even though we know he bought it. Or do we? In the Recollections episode, we never actually hear the complete legal documents being read. Surely there is more to buying a piece of city property than simply saying you will buy it and the city council voting. It would be necessary for some paperwork to be signed, etc. Maybe when the actual deed was drawn up, Glossman did some changing of the deal and Whit decided not to fight it because he was only really interested in the building anyway. It is also possible that Tom Riley, who is the one who told the story about Whit buying the Fillmore Recreation Center misquoted Whit, assuming he would want to buy the building and the land. All in all, there is certainly a possible explanation of how Whit did not own the land in these episodes. However, both of these points may be rendered moot by Phil Lollar's admission in The Complete Guide that they goofed.

Resolved

In The Forgotten Deed, this is finally resolved. It is explained that Whit thought he was buying the whole property but was only able to buy the building due to legal restrictions on the land, and apparently, a deed that was buried in a family Bible in a time capsule. The deed stated that the government owned the land unless it was no longer used to glorify God if so it was no longer owned by the government and the land went back to the McAlister Family. Since the City Counsel agreed that they did not want to own the land, it went to Eleanor McAlister. She then sold it to Whit for $1 and he put it in an Universal Press Foundation fund.

See also

Resources