Created By: darkjezter on October 30, 2012 Last Edited By: Tallens on May 2, 2013
Troped

Wealthy Yacht Owner

What better way to show an extravagent lifestyle than by owning a boat bigger than most houses?

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Financial experts often say that buying a boat is one of the worst wastes of money there is. Besides the cost of the boat itself, they are expensive to fuel (marine engines are gas hogs), expensive to insure, expensive to maintain, and you also have to take things like dock fees and boating accessories into account. Combine these costs with the fact that most boat owners only use it a few times per year (usually during the summer months) and it's easy to conclude that, with the exception of serious boating enthusiasts, most boat owners are not getting their money's worth.

So how do you instantly establish that a character is filthy rich? Show them aboard a luxury yacht that's easily worth several million dollars.

Examples

Film
  • One scene in The Dark Knight shows Bruce Wayne aboard a yacht along with several gorgeous, bikini-clad women.
  • In Hot Tub Time Machine Lou exploits his knowlege of the future to become a billionaire. At the end of the film he is seen aboard a huge yacht named "Violator."
  • Sebastian Shaw in X-Men: First Class has a yacht that he keeps in Miami harbor.
  • James Bond:
    • In Casino Royale Le Chiffre is first seen playing poker aboard a yacht.
    • In Skyfall Bond is taken to the Big Bad's hideout aboard a sailing yacht.
  • Parodied in Secondhand Lions. At the end Walter and the Shiek's grandson are laughing at the large yacht that one salesman sold Hub and Garth, and is floating on their tiny pond.
    Sheik's Grandson: I see they spent my grandfather's money wisely.
  • On Some Like It Hot, Joe seduces Sugar Kane by pretending to be a millionaire with a yacht anchored offshore. Fortunately, Osborne, a real millionaire, is in love with Daphne (really Joe's friend Jerry Disguised in Drag), so while he takes Daphne for a night on the town, Joe sneaks Sugar into Osborne's yacht and pretends it's his.
  • In Caddyshack, Judge Smails is christening his new yacht, when Al Czervik (Rodney Dangerfield) shows up in his much larger boat. He then shoves his driver out of the way, put its engines into high gear, and tries to park near Smails' party, causing much damage (and Hilarity) in the process.
    Al: Hey, Smails! My dinghy's bigger than your whole boat!
  • Tony Stark has a yacht in the Iron Man movies.
  • First scene in the movie Superman Returns is Lex Luthor swindling an old woman out of her fortune, and among the many things he obtained with it there is a huge yacht-complete with helipad, piano, top-of-the-line electronics, enough room to work on a plan that could destroy the American continent without feeling constricted...

Literature
  • Since Charles Stross' The Jennifer Morgue is a love-letter to James Bond, this was bound to show up somewhere. Ellis Billington takes it Up to Eleven with the Mabuse, a "yacht" which is actually a demilitarized former Russian Navy Krivak III-class missile frigate.
  • In P. G. Wodehouse's Thank You, Jeeves, J. Washburn Stoker, who recently amassed a huge fortune, has what Bertie refers to as a "whacking great yacht". It later becomes a plot point when Bertie gets kidnapped onto the yacht and has to escape.

Live-Action TV
  • Jimmy Wong, a minor character in the Castle episode "Sucker Punch", claims in his infomercial that he came to America on a boat, and now "I own a boat!" The second one may be true, but he's really from Danville, California and affects a Chinese accent to attract customers.
  • In one episode of 30 Rock, Tracy invites everyone to his yacht for a party. Only it turns out the yacht is not his, and everyone is arrested for trespassing.
  • Spoofed with Bobby from Cougar Town. He owns a modest houseboat... and little else. He can't even afford to keep it in the marina, so he just leaves it in a parking lot and lives inside. Eventually the others collect enough money to get the boat to dock, but the moment it hits the water it sinks.
  • In The Pretender episode "Collateral Damage", Lenny Duc claims in his infomercial that he came to America on a tiny boat, "and now I own big boat!" We never actually get to see the big boat, and it may be as fictional as the tiny boat (Lenny later admits he actually came to America in an airplane).
  • Despite focusing on a low-income family, Showtime's Shameless has featured several yachts: Jasmine's sugar daddy held a yacht party, and Steve's father-in-law - a Brazilian drug lord - also owns a yacht.

Music
  • Comedy group The Lonely Island, in which the members of the group are partying aboard a yacht with rapper T-Pain.
  • Quite common in Glam Rap music videos, in which the rapper will be seen partying aboard a yacht to show how rich and successful he has become.

Tabletop Game
  • Rogue Trader characters are defined by their enormous fortunes and equally enormous, super-opulent ships.

Video Game
  • Near the beginning of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City the player attends a yacht party attended by Vice City's rich and famous.
  • Lili from Tekken, heir and daughter to the owner of Rochefort Enterprises, has an enormous yacht. In Street Fighter X Tekken she argues with her teammate Asuka why they don't just use it to get to the South Pole (where the game's central MacGuffin is located), and Asuka replies 'That would be like painting an massive target on our backs'.

Web Original
  • In Jackfilms' parody of the ShamWow informercials, Lance Bass demonstrated the many different things you could wipe with your ShamWow - "Wipe your car, wipe your boat, wipe your RV, wipe your other boat..."

Western Animation
  • Duchess de la Roche, the wealthy robot Bender dates in the Futurama episode "A Flight to Remember". She doesn't just own a yacht, she is a yacht.
  • In an early episode of Family Guy Peter wins a boat - which he trades in for a Mystery Box.
    A boat's a boat, but a Mystery Box could be anything - it could even be a boat! And you know how much I've wanted one of those.
  • The Simpsons:
    • Homer & Marge go to a seminar on money management, presented by a man who (claims he) got a luxury yacht real cheap because it smells like cat pee.
    • In another episode while Homer is house-sitting for Mr. Burns he throws a big party for his friends on Burns' yacht. They get attacked by Ruthless Modern Pirates.
Community Feedback Replies: 32
  • October 30, 2012
    Arivne
    Im On A Boat! is a "sounds like a line of dialog" title that will get this trope discarded or sent to the Cut List. See No New Stock Phrases and Naming A Trope for the reasons.

    Wealthy Yacht Owner?

    Film
  • October 30, 2012
    StarSword
    Literature

    Live Action TV
    • Jimmy Wong, a minor character in the Castle episode "Sucker Punch", claims in his infomercial that he came to America on a boat, and now "I own a boat!" The second one may be true, but he's really from Danville, California and affects a Chinese accent to attract customers.
  • October 30, 2012
    Tallens
    • Parodied in Secondhand Lions. At the end Walter and the Shiek's grandson are laughing at the large yacht that one salesman sold Hub and Garth, and is floating on their tiny pond.
      Sheik's Grandson: I see they spent my grandfather's money wisely.
  • October 30, 2012
    TonyG
    • On Some Like It Hot, Joe seduces Sugar Kane by pretending to be a millionaire with a yacht anchored offshore. Fortunately, Osborne, a real millionaire, is in love with Daphne (really Joe's friend Jerry Disguised In Drag), so while he takes Daphne for a night on the town, Joe sneaks Sugar into Osborne's yacht and pretends it's his.
    • In one episode of Thirty Rock, Tracy invites everyone to his yacht for a party. Only it turns out the yacht is not his, and everyone is arrested for trespassing.
    • Spoofed with Bobby from Cougar Town. He owns a modest houseboat... and little else. He can't even afford to keep it in the marina, so he just leaves it in a parking lot and lives inside. Eventually the others collect enough money to get the boat to dock, but the moment it hits the water it sinks.
    • Duchess de la Roche, the wealthy robot Bender dates in the Futurama episode "A Flight to Remember". She doesn't just own a yacht, she is a yacht.
  • November 9, 2012
    Tallens
    Wealthy Yacht Owner would probably work.
  • November 10, 2012
    DracMonster
    • In Caddyshack, Judge Smails is christening his new yacht, when Al Czervik (Rodney Dangerfield) shows up in his much larger boat. He then shoves his driver out of the way, put its engines into high gear, and tries to park near Smails' party, causing much damage (and Hilarity) in the process.
      Al: Hey, Smails! My dinghy's bigger than your whole boat!

    (Above might make a good page quote.)

    Another vote for Wealthy Yacht Owner - memes arent allowed as titles anymore.

    EDIT: Or maybe Boatgeoisie, not sure how well the pun works. Otherwise maybe Big Bourgeoisie Boat for alliteration.
  • November 10, 2012
    LancelotG
    • In PG Wodehouse's Thank You, Jeeves, J. Washburn Stoker, who recently amassed a huge fortune, has what Bertie refers to as a "whacking great yacht". It later becomes a plot point when Bertie gets kidnapped onto the yacht and has to escape.
  • November 10, 2012
    Tallens
    Another James Bond
    • In Skyfall Bond is taken to the Big Bad's hideout aboard a sailing yacht.
  • November 11, 2012
    bwburke94
    Can we actually think of a better title for this?
  • November 11, 2012
    StarSword
    @DracMonster: Boatgeoisie? I'm all for punny trope names (I'm the OP of Fowl Mouthed Parrot), but how do you even pronounce that?
  • November 11, 2012
    DracMonster
    ^You don't. You hire people to pronounce it for you.

    Seriously, though, I was just tossing it out off the top of my head.
  • December 18, 2012
    Tallens
    I think Wealthy Yacht Owner fits better. Uses smaller words.
  • December 18, 2012
    justanotherrandomlurker
    Web Original
    • In Jackfilms' parody of the Sham Wow informercials, Lance Bass demonstrated the many different things you could wipe with your Sham Wow - "Wipe your car, wipe your boat, wipe your RV, wipe your other boat..."
  • December 18, 2012
    chicagomel
    Do house boats count? Highlander had Duncan living on his converted barge in the Paris parts.
  • December 19, 2012
    Tallens
    ^Not so sure about that one. The point of these boats is to scream "I have money!" I've never seen Highlander, but even so, I don't think a converted barge gives the right impression.
  • December 20, 2012
    randomsurfer
    • In an early episode of Family Guy Peter wins a boat - which he trades in for a Mystery Box.
      A boat's a boat, but a Mystery Box could be anything - it could even be a boat! And you know how much I've wanted one of those.
  • December 20, 2012
    chicagomel
    No,probably not.
  • December 20, 2012
    0blivionmobile
    For Tabletop Games, of all things:
    • Rogue Trader characters are defined by their enormous fortunes and equally enormous, super-opulent ships.
  • December 26, 2012
    PaulA
    • In The Pretender episode "Collateral Damage", Lenny Duc claims in his infomercial that he came to America on a tiny boat, "and now I own big boat!" We never actually get to see the big boat, and it may be as fictional as the tiny boat (Lenny later admits he actually came to America in an airplane).

    ...which makes two apparently unrelated examples of Asian-Americans making informercials in which they claim "I came here in a boat, and now I own a boat" -- which makes me wonder if there's an older example they're both playing on.
  • December 27, 2012
    randomsurfer
    • The Simpsons:
      • Homer & Marge go to a seminar on money management, presented by a man who (claims he) got a luxury yacht real cheap because it smells like cat pee.
      • In another episode while Homer is house-sitting for Mr. Burns he throws a big party for his friends on Burns' yacht. They get attacked by Ruthless Modern Pirates.
  • April 24, 2013
    Tallens
    This has been sitting around since December.
  • April 24, 2013
    marcoasalazarm
    Another thing we could add to the X Men First Class example: Shaw's nuclear submarine has a number of rooms converted to be luxury quarters.

    Would Superman Returns count as well? First scene we see on the movie is Lex Luthor swindling an old woman out of her fortune, and among the many things he obtained with it there is a huge yacht-complete with helipad, piano, top-of-the-line electronics, enough room to work on a plan that could destroy the American contrinent without feeling constricted...
  • April 25, 2013
    arromdee
    Tony Stark has a yacht in the Iron Man movies, I believe. (I cannot search this at the moment.)
  • April 25, 2013
    Tallens
    Reference to a trope namer should be removed.
  • April 25, 2013
    maxwellsilver
    The example structure needs fixing.
  • April 25, 2013
    Tallens
    And there's a lot of examples that need to be added.
  • April 27, 2013
    maxwellsilver
    I'd say it's up for grabs now, so anyone can add examples. There hasn't been any interaction from the trope sponsor.

    It's also probably ready for launch.
  • April 27, 2013
    1810072342
    Video Games: Lili from Tekken, heir and daughter to the owner of Rochefort Enterprises, has an enormous yacht. In Street Fighter X Tekken she argues with her teammate Asuka why they don't just use it to get to the South Pole (where the game's central Mac Guffin is located), and Asuka replies 'That would be like painting an massive target on our backs'.
  • April 27, 2013
    Tallens
    Added the examples we have so far.
  • May 1, 2013
    Tallens
    We got plenty of examples and maxed out on hats. If this is still here by tomorrow night I'm launching it.
  • May 1, 2013
    Boston
    Despite focusing on a low-income family, Showtime's Shameless has featured several yachts: Jasmine's sugar daddy held a yacht party, and Steve's father-in-law - a Brazilian drug lord - also owns a yacht.
  • May 2, 2013
    Tallens
    Got that, and launching.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=x43hstlpa07auib23fbr6oy4&trope=WealthyYachtOwner