Punishment Box YKTTW Discussion

Punishment Box
A shed or box that prisoners are put in to give them extra punishment
(permanent link) added: 2011-04-17 15:56:26 sponsor: randomsurfer (last reply: 2011-08-25 07:00:02)

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Needs A Better Laconic.

Our protagonist is in a Chain Gang prison and has violated one of the Corrupt Hick sheriff's rules. So they send him to the Punishment Box (more commonly, "The Box.") The Box is a small metal shed in the middle of the compound, exposed to sun. They put you in and you are tortured by sweating it out in 120 degree heat. Unless it's not a bright sunny day, in which case you probably have to survive the cold.


  • 'The box' in Cool Hand Luke is probably the Trope Codifier here.
  • On Chicken Run, Ginger is put on a coal bin everytime she's caught trying to escape.
  • In Toy Story 3 it's the sandbox at Sunnyside.
  • In Hook, pirates who have failed are put into the "Boo Box", a chest which is also inhabited by several scorpions.
  • In Matilda, the sadistic headmistress is fond of (among other things) using the "Pokey," a closet lined with spikes, thus like an iron maiden in which there is just barely enough room to stand.
  • In Despicable Me, orphans who disobey Miss Hattie get put in the Box of Shame.
  • The Japanese prison camp in The Bridge on the River Kwai has a metal punishment box that stands outside in the sun. Prisoners don't get any water.

  • The StarCraft II prequel novel Heaven's Devils has a military penal mine with one of these.
  • Fablehaven has the Quiet Box, a magical sensory deprivation chamber.

Live Action TV:
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "Paridise." A group of colonists who crash-landed on a planet 10 years ago use the Box as punishment for any transgression.
  • The Star Trek TOS episode "Mirror, Mirror" had one of these.
  • Kung Fu: Caine finds himself in a two-man Box, and teaches the other man in the box to meditate so as to avoid the torturous aspects of being in the box. The guards & other prisoners are amazed that they're able to leave under their own power instead of being carried out.
  • The Incredible Hulk episode "The Slam:" David gets put in one. Strangely enough, he doesn't Hulk Out. Another prisoner in the box next door tells him how to survive: find a rock to suck on, put your head in the least exposed place possible, and don't move around.
  • My Name Is Earl: Earl goes to prison to cover up the fact that Joy really did the crime in question. The prison there has a 2 person "Hot Box;" there's a chain link fence between the two sides of the box, but there's also a hole in the fence big enough to put your arm through.
  • In the Firefly episode "Jaynestown", Jayne's former partner is kept prisoner in solitary confinement, in a small (looks to be maybe 5 foot by 5 foot) box on stilts in the middle of a swamp.

Western Animation
  • King of the Hill: Bobby is put into one of these at a military school. It most assuredly does not break him.
    I've slept on a mattress. I've slept on cement. I'm a mattress guy.
  • On Recess the Box is just a square drawn on the playground floor. T.J. at first laughs it off, but eventually it breaks him.
  • In an episode of Batman: The Animated Series, Batman becomes a captive of a forced labour camp made up of homeless people. The main punishment for failure to work is being placed in the box.
  • The "Fun Box" featured in some episodes of The Fairly Oddparents that is coincidentally closed with "fun locks".
  • In TaleSpin, Baloo stays at a Thembrian penal colony which he has mistaken for a fitness camp. He is frequently sent to what he calls a "solar powered sauna."

I'm not sure which category this goes in
  • Yu Gi Oh Abridged has a reference to it:
    (Tristan says something stupid)
    Joey: Do you want to go back in the box?
    Tristan: Please don't make me go in there!

Seen It a Million Times. Needs a Better Description.
Replies: 57