You might want to sit down for this.
Two TV super buffs, Keith Gow and Ash Crowe have developed one of the most intricate - and more importantly, plausible - fan theories we’ve ever seen.
In essence, the pair suggest that almost every single American TV show (and some outside the States like the UK Office) exist in the exact same world.
More specifically, they exist in the dream world of Tommy Westphall, a minor character in TV series St Elsewhere. Westphall was an autistic child in the show who was revealed in the final episode of St Elsewhere to have dreamt the entire run of the show.
And this is where the journey begins:
You see, St Elsewhere is connected directly to a least twelve other shows via character crossovers meaning you could quite reasonably suggest that they of the same realm.
With us? Because this is where it starts going insane.
Because on top of these shows where there are direct character crossovers, there are also an absolute ton of other shows that may not have the same characters but do reference specific parts of the show that are intrinsic to the fictional universe of St Elsewhere.
For example – Yoyodyne, the tech company that was responsible for building the federation starships in Star Trek also appeared in The John Larroquette Show, which in turn can be linked to Frasier and Friends before eventually winding its way back to St Elsewhere.
The list of shows is huge and all leads to the same hypothesis, best explained by The Tommy Westphall Universe blog:
"If St Elsewhere exists only within Tommy Westphall’s mind, then so does every other series set within the same fictional sphere.
"Some of the links are direct – characters cross over from television series to television series all the time, it’s a long-time television tradition. Some series spin off entire other series, obviously expanding their fictional universes.
"Some connections are indirect – fictional places, character names, awards, newspapers, cigarette brands, companies that place some shows within the same fictional universe."
And thus, we present to you the incredibly intricate map of Tommy’s mind and crossover world of television as we know it, as handily compiled by The Tommy Westphall Universe blog and the Huffington Post.