The World War 2 Obscure Trivia Thread


What daring, yet successful, raid inspired an iconic scene in the original Star Wars film?


I know that George Lucas was influenced greatly by the movie “Dam Busters”, which is about the Allied bombing raids on dams in the Ruhr area. I suppose the trench scene in Star Wars may be influenced by one of these raids?


Yes, the “dam buster” mission was one of the inspirations.

Keeping with the category… What period film inspired the scene that goes with the following track?

Star Wars OST mystery track


IIRC an initial cut of Star Wars used scenes from 633 Squadron in place of incomplete special effects.


Darn, might need to watch that again.


Who were the Plymouth Argylls?


One of the best themes of any war film ever IMO.


Not even a nibble? Time for a clue I guess.

It’s not this lot, although there is a connection.


Four members of Plymouth Argylis F.C. who joined the RAF following the Battle of Britain. They served in North Africa, flying cover for the second battle of El Alamein.


Interesting, but no. It was a name, or at least a nickname of a unit.


OK then, the Plymouth Argyles.

At the end of 1941, Churchill compelled the Admiralty to send two of Britain’s prime capital ships, the new battleship Prince of Wales and the battlecruiser Repulse to Singapore to help bolster the empire’s defences. The idea was that they would act as a fleet in being, in the hope that the hassle of having to deal with two fast capital ships operating out of a well defended harbour would be enough to deter the Japanese.

It wasn’t and the Japanese invaded Malaya via Thailand and precipitated one of the most ignominious defeats of British arms in history. As part of the debacle, Prince of Wales and Repulse were sent from Singapore to try and intercept part of the Japanese invasion forces. Without air cover, they were attacked by land based Japanese aircraft and sunk.

A large part of the crews of both ships were rescued, including both ships’ contingents of Royal Marines. Normally, after the sinking of a ship, the survivors would be entitled to home leave but with the dire military situation in Singapore, the marines were pressed into service as infantry replacements and were amalgamated with the remains of a battalion of the Argyle and Sutherland Highlanders that had been badly chewed up in fighting in Malaya. Before the war, Repulse had been based out of Devonport in Plymouth and many of her marines were from the city. It was therefore somewhat inevitable that the composite battalion should become known as the Plymouth Argyles, after the local football team.

After the fall of Singapore, the Plymouth Argyles went into captivity along with the rest of the British and Commonwealth forces. The poor marines had therefore to endure the sinking of their ship and three and a half years in Japanese PoW camps too.


More aircraft nicknames. What was the Slow But Deadly?


The Douglass SBD Dauntless.

Who was the Son of a Bitch, Second Class?


Curtis SB2C Helldiver.


Which plane was nicknamed “Tiffy?”


Any guesses on “Tiffy?”

Hints include: car door, fish plate, and H block.


I take it not the prison complex in Northern Ireland…


“Tiffy” was the Hawker Tyhpoon.


This is the car door…

…and H Block is presumably a reference to the Napier Sabre engine, but what’s the fish hook? I haven’t heard that one before.


…an arrestor hook?