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Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Locked In A Freezer - Television Tropes & Idioms

Two or more characters are locked in a walk-in freezer, meat locker, or some other small, contained space. Death is usually imminent. The characters talk a lot, often coming to a greater understanding of each other. Rescue comes in the nick of time. Of course, in most places in real life such freezers have to be openable from the inside precisely to prevent this kind of thing from happening. The best treatments of this trope provide some explanation for why it isn't so (e.g. the lock has been deliberately sabotaged in such way, or there's something blocking the door on the outside, etc.) Sometimes used as a Framing Device for a Clip Show, as parodied in the second (yes, second) episode of Clerks The Animated Series. If the characters are locked in, but not in peril, they are simply Locked In A Room. Another fun variation adds a pregnant woman and the inevitable Screaming Birth.
Examples:
  • I Love Lucy, "The Freezer"
  • Alice, "Don't Lock Now"
  • Star Trek Enterprise, "Shuttlepod One"
  • Babylon Five, "Convictions"
  • Both The Brady Bunch and Threes Company did this more than once.
  • Its Garry Shandlings Show poked fun at this device when Garry got locked in a freezer with Jeff Goldblum. Garry said in an aside, "Can you see this coming?"
  • Night Court had a classic "Locked In an Elevator" episode where Dan was locked in an elevator with a gay man. //Also, two sumo wrestlers. Or was that a different episode?
  • One Life To Live had some episodes involving Viki and Dorian, two of the show's older characters, where trapped in a cave following an avalanche. They learned to respect each other, as well as dreamed of what it was like to be each other.
  • An episode of The Dukes Of Hazzard in which Uncle Jesse and Boss Hogg trapped together in an airtight bank vault subverts this somewhat. The characters come to the required greater understanding of each other, even becoming friendly as the air grows thin. Of course, them Duke Boys show up in the nick of time, and after the rescue mirthfully point out the air vent in the seemingly airtight vault, turning it into LockedInARoom.
  • The final moments of Clone High has everyone literally Locked In A Freezer, but that's really not an example of this trope.
  • In one episode of Code Lyoko, Xana locks Yumi and Ulrick in a room and raises the temperature (instead of lowering it). This is also a Death Trap, although not a complex one.
Locked In A Freezer - Television Tropes & Idioms

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