Titanic. Computer artwork of RMS Titanic at sea at night. The Titanic was the largest ocean liner ever built at the time, and was reputed to be unsinkable. However, during its maiden voyage it struck an iceberg in the North Atlantic on the night of 14 April 1912 and sank with the loss of 1517 lives.



It Wasn't Rose's Fault! All the Doors that Contributed to Jack's Death!

So, was there room for Jack on that piece of wooden debris? What's up with the debate about the door in the basement?

March 14, 2020

More than 100 years since the tragic event and two decades after the initial release of Titanic, there have been multiple "door" conspiracy theories. Let's break down two of those popular theories.

Rose's Door

Despite director James Cameron, leading actress Kate Winslet, and leading actor Leonardo DiCaprio’s repeated efforts to settle the most iconic movie controversy of all time, audiences are still obsessed with the debate over whether or not Jack and Rose could have both fit onto the wooden debris and survived. So, was there room for Jack?



LOS ANGELES - DECEMBER 19: The movie "Titanic", written and directed by James Cameron. Seen here from left, Leonardo DiCaprio as Jack and Kate Winslet as Rose after the Titanic has sunk. Initial USA theatrical wide release December 19, 1997. Screen capture. Paramount Pictures. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)

Photo by: CBS Photo Archive

CBS Photo Archive

In a 2012 Mythbusters episode, Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage did an experiment using an exact replica of the wooden piece from the movie, and the two proved that if they had tied Rose’s life jacket to the bottom of the door to reinforce its buoyancy, they would’ve managed to stay afloat.

However, their conclusion was debunked when director Cameron claimed that the freezing water and Jack’s hyperthermia would have made the life jacket solution impossible. He also said that the debate is beyond the point the movie was trying to make, which is focused on the tragic love story of Jack and Rose, not physics.

The largest fragment of debris recovered from the real Titanic, now displayed in the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic in Halifax, Nova Scotia, is a piece intricately carved “wreckwood” that is believed to be a panel above the doorframe of the first-class lounge. The museum’s website states that a replica of a large piece of carved oak paneling was built for the film based on the artifact from the museum’s Titanic collection, which was known as the “door” used in the climactic death scene where Rose clings to the floating wreckage. Unfortunately, the size of the oak debris coupled with the weight of a hypothermic Rose on top could work, but not if Jack’s additional weight was added to it.

Cinematic choice or not, science has proven the movie’s ending to be reasonable. Now we know that Jack didn’t die for nothing and did indeed sacrifice himself to save the love of his life!

Titanic: The Door in the Basement 01:52

There may have been a door in the basement that contributed to the Titanic's demise.

The Basement Door

Although the Science Channel special doesn't cover Rose's door, it does go into theories about the door in the basement and a fire in the bunker. Did this fire weaken the bunker? Was the door in the basement poorly constructed so it didn't stand a chance once water started flowing in?

For more discussion on the Titanic's demise, tune in to TITANIC: CONSPIRACY OF FAILURE on Sunday, 3/15 at 8:30pm ET or watch it on SCI GO.

Next Up

The Flu: How It Spreads, and How You Can Stop It

Every year like clockwork, we are confronted with the dreaded flu season. Scientists work tirelessly to understand Influenza and how we can prevent the spread.

It Rains on the Sun

We're used to rain and the water cycle here on earth, but what about on the sun? Guess what: it rains there too! Read on to learn more.

The Perseid Meteor Shower Reaches its Peak

Stargazers rejoice! The annual Perseid meteor shower is upon us. Here's what you need to know...

The Last Supermoon of the Year and How to See It

The Super Flower Moon of May is this year's last supermoon, when the Moon appears slightly larger and brighter in the sky because it is somewhat closer to Earth. Here's everything you need to know and how to watch it from home.

If the Universe Is Expanding, What Is It Expanding Into?

There's a short answer and a long answer to this mysterious question.

The Broomstick Challenge is Not What it Appears to Be

The Broomstick Challenge is clearly sweeping the nation, but don’t let it fool you. If you take a closer look behind the meaning of it, it’s not exactly based on real science.

How Much Force Does It Take To Break A Bone?

Contrary to popular belief, bones are not that easy to break.

Why Does It Hurt to Get Water Up Your Nose?

Not everyone feels pain when water enters their noise.

Vertical Farming: Raising Agriculture’s Potential and Lowering its Environmental Impact

Our planet is finite and with the population growing, how do we provide food to the world without taking up more space?

The Butterfly Effect Is Why It's Impossible to Predict the Weather

This is a concept invented by the American meteorologist.