Trapped In Elevator

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Trope · Genre
Synonyms: Trapped In Lift, Stuck In An Elevator, Stuck In A Lift
Related: Elevator Failure, Born in an Elevator, Evil Elevator
See Also: Locked in a Room
Tropes · Slash Tropes · Tropes by Fandom
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Trapped In Elevator is a sub-trope of Elevator Failure, where an elevator (or lift in the UK) stops working and one or more characters are trapped inside the elevator. On TV this is a common excuse for a bottle episode with minimal props and sets.

For the characters trapped inside the elevator, it generally is used for a romance aspect, for examples: to Admit Their Feelings, have a Meaningful Conversation, First Kiss, First Meeting, or it'll be a smutty fic. Sometimes it's pulled as a horror trope or a humor/crack trope, see Born in Elevator which is another common sub-trope of Elevator Failure.

In superhero fanfic (less often in the source material) this trope may lead to the revelation of a character's secret identity; for example, if Clark Kent and Lois Lane are trapped in the lift, and someone is cutting the cables, Clark may have to reveal that he is Superman to facilitate their escape.

Canon Examples

  • Bones episode "The Blackout in the Blizzard", Bones and Booth are stuck in an old elevator in Booth's apartment building.
  • NCIS episode "Power Down", Ziva and McGee are trapped.
    • In many other episodes Gibbs and other characters stop elevators between floors for private discussions, and Gibbs has been known to refer to the elevator as his office.
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "The Forsaken", Odo gets trapped in a turbolift with Lwaxana Troi.
  • The Office episode "Nepotism" features Dwight Schrute and Pam Beesly stuck in an elevator after a prank backfires.


Examples Wanted: Editors are encouraged to add more examples or a wider variety of examples.


  • Worth It by rashaka, An elevator, Felicity decided, was exactly the wrong place to have this conversation. (Oliver/Felicity)

Marvel Cinematic Universe:

Lois & Clark:

  • The Truth Revealed by Sara Kraft; The morning after Lois and Clark have finally confessed their love to one another, they get stuck in a Daily Planet elevator. Clark decides the situation makes a great opportunity to confess something else. (Lois/Clark)


  • The Office by Leyenn; Come into my office, said the Special Agent to the forensic scientist. (Gibbs/Abby)