I turned on the TV the other day and watched a few minutes of the animated Disney film, “Turbo” and noticed an ‘issue’.  The little snail named Theo, nicknamed Turbo, acquired his ‘super speed power’ when he was sucked into the ram-air intake of a supercharger on a Chevrolet Camaro.  The below frame from the action sequence occurred about 16 minutes into the movie.

Here’s my question: If he got sucked into a supercharger, why is his name Turbo?

A turbocharger is a type of forced air injection that uses exhaust gas to power a turbine.  A supercharger, as depicted in the movie, uses mechanical power derived from the crankshaft to turn a turbine.  Both systems accomplish the same task, but they are mechanically different.

Since the movie is about a talking snail I hesitate to label this as a ‘continuity error’.  While it might not even be an error, it really pushes the boundaries of artistic license during the writing or editing process.  Maybe the writers didn’t know the difference between a supercharger and a turbo charger.  Or more likely, the animators found it more plausible for the snail to be sucked into a supercharger as turbo chargers generally don’t rely on ram-air scoops like superchargers do.

I liked the movie and I don’t want to nitpick, but the ‘issue’ did seem to warrant attention.

Categories: Thoughts