Two apparently new effects in human cardiac responding, "primary bradycardia" and "vagal inhibition", were first described by the Laceys. These effects have been considered by some researchers to reflect differential cardiac innervation, analogous to similar effects observed in animal preparations with direct vagal stimulation. However, it has been argued that such effects arise merely from the data-analytic techniques introduced by the Laceys, and hence are not genuine cardiac cycle effects. Jennings, van der Molen, Somsen and Ridderinkhoff (Psychophysiology, 28 (1991) 596-606) recently proposed a plotting technique and statistical procedure in an attempt to resolve this issue. The present paper demonstrates that the plotting technique fails to achieve their stated aim, since it identifies data from identical cardiac responses as showing cardiac-cycle effects. In addition, the statistical procedure is shown to be reducible to a trivial test of response occurrence. The implication of these demonstrations, in the context of other work, is that this area of investigation has reached a dead end. © 1993.