They don't mix.

AsYouKnow, the MagicSkirt is a trope in place to preserve the modesty of women [[MaleGaze before the audience]]. The trope can't be counted on to be in effect in-universe with regards to the other characters. Some skirted female characters are aware of this, and thus this trope.

Basically, a GenreSavvy, skirted woman refuses to climb, scale, ascend, mount or escalate a ladder or ladder-like device while men are nearby for fear of subverting Magic Skirt, and [[PantyShot well, you know...]]

She's not always successful. But if she's lucky, [[AllMenArePerverts not all men in-story are perverts]]. If it's the ''cameraman'' who does this, then it's MaleGaze. Of course, this is often a RealLife concern for women and part of the rationale behind ModestyShorts or SkirtOverSlacks.

The trope's name is a reference to the popular [[BoardGames board game]] ''Chutes and Ladders" (sometimes called "Snakes and Ladders").



[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* In a scene cut by 4Kids, during ''Anime/YuGiOh'''s Duelist Kingdom arc, Tea/Anzu and the cheerleading squad (lead by Tristan/Honda) were scaling a secret tower via rope. Honda suggests that Anzu go first so that if she falls they can catch her. She refuses initially, blushing and indicating her skirt. Honda doesn't understand, so Bakura explains the problem. She ultimately allows it so long as they both wear blindfolds (which eliminates the original purpose of catching her if she falls).
** And then the way they climb makes it a moot point, as even if the guys weren't blindfolded, they were walking up the side of the tower in a manner that prevents them from looking up her skirt anyways, except ''maybe'' when she went in the window.
** A variation happens in the first chapter of the manga, where Anzu quits a class basketball game in disgust after noticing how the boys would only pass the ball to the girls when they were in a spot where they would have to make a jump shot...
* In ''Anime/EsOtherwise'', Yuuki, Kai and Asuka are being pursued by a killer cyborg. Escaping into the sewer, Yuuki leads them up a ladder while carrying Asuka on his back. Asuka (who's wearing a short skirt) requests that Kai go up first. Not understanding, Yuuki heads up the ladder anyway, giving Kai a perfect view (he blushes tomato-red). [[TheWoobie She cries afterwards]], since Kai is basically her LoveInterest (and Yuuki still never got it).
* ''Manga/GreatTeacherOnizuka'' starts with this scene.
* In ''Manga/{{Bastard}}'' (the anime), when Dark Schneider goes off to rescue Tia from a ninja along with the royal army AND the Royal Princess, they run into a problem like this during the assault on the tower. Since the ground-floor is a battleground, DS has to go up last to protect the ladder, but the princess refuses to go up first since she's wearing a rather short skirt. (She originally wore it under a rather fancy set of armor, but DS had her take it off once it became clear that it was completely useless and very encumbering.) DS rolls his eyes, throws her over his shoulder, and climbs up the ladder with her hanging there. Thus, instead of him potentially looking up her skirt, she winds up having her boobs bouncing off his back and her hips grinding against his face all the way up. Judging from her expression, she'd probably have preferred it the other way around.
* An early episode of ''Anime/DigimonFrontier'' had Zoe suspect this trope was in effect once she was offered "Ladies First" up a ladder.
* The first time we met Kamome in ''Anime/CyberTeamInAkihabara'', she is going first up stairs in a very short skirt providing a PantyShot; when some boys enjoying the view remark her this, her first action is to demand money from them in exchange for the fanservice, so she doesn't denounce them as perverts.
* [[Anime/AgentAika AIKa R-16: Virgin Mission]] uses this trope extensively.
* Komari has this worry while climbing a ladder around Riki in an episode of the ''VisualNovel/LittleBusters'' anime.
* In ''Manga/{{Bizenghast}}'', heroine Dinah ends up climbing a ladder ahead of her best friend and possible love interest Vincent. While wearing a very short skirt. Vincent is told, "Don't you dare look up," and complies, but turns bright red.
* ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion''. Misato and Kaji are trapped in an elevator during a power blackout at NERV. Trying to open the ceiling trapdoor, she ends up kneeling on Kaji's shoulders, warning him not to look up her skirt. Kaji clearly wants to just get out of there and has no intention of doing so, especially when Misato says she [[PottyEmergency urgently has to go to the bathroom]].
* Inverted for humor (and arguably the only genuine fanservice in the entire series) in the last episode of ''Anime/GhostStories'' Desperate to save Satsuki, Momoko has Hajime and Leo boost her into a high window in the old school building. It's only after the two boys (and the camera) look up and get an eyeful that this possibility occurs to any of them. Momoko doesn't catch on and the two boys are too embarrassed to mention it.
* Invoked in ''Manga/DailyLivesOfHighSchoolBoys'', as the boys call for Ringo to "fix their internet connection" (which happens to be a router bolted to the ceiling, requiring a stepladder to reach). While Ringo's up there, they all take the opportunity to peek, but Ringo remains oblivious. Afterward, the boys remark that doing so actually made them feel more guilty than happy.
* A variation happens the third special of ''Anime/GirlsUndPanzer'', when Anglerfish Team climbs a steep flight of stairs in the school ship (unbeknownst to them, they're going up the "down" stairs). Saori desperately tries to prevent Mako from seeing what's up her skirt, but the other four girls are not nearly as concerned about this trope.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* There's a scene from ''ComicBook/TheLeagueOfExtraordinaryGentlemen'' where Mina climbs up something before Alan, and he's clearly taking a look up her dress. Mina is none too pleased, and Alan's expression is a [[SugarWiki/FunnyMoments Crowning Moment of Funny]]. Half the comedy comes from the fact that Mina is wearing ridiculously modest Victorian bloomers under her dress anyway...this is the 19th century's idea of {{Fanservice}}!

* The Creator/MelGibson[=/=]Goldie Hawn movie ''Film/BirdOnAWire'' featured this in the trailers for the movie. Hawn's character doesn't invoke this, though, until they're halfway up a fire escape and the wind is lifting her skirt.
* Parodied in one of ''Film/TheNakedGun'' movies. Priscilla Presley climbs up a ladder.
-->'''Leslie Nielsen:''' ''(looking up)'' Nice beaver!
-->'''Priscilla Presley:''' Thank you, I just had it stuffed. ''[Hands him a stuffed beaver.]''
* Creator/DavidFincher's ''Film/TheGame'' has this. When climbing out of an elevator, Christine wants Nicolas to go first. Nicolas complains that it'll be that much harder to pull Christine up than for her to go first. Christine says that she's not wearing any underwear.
** A few minutes later, when they are chased by dogs in the alley, Christine doesn't hesitate. Nicolas calls her on it.
* ''Film/The51stState'' reverses it, with Emily Mortimer looking up Samuel L. Jackson's kilt.
* In ''Film/AustinPowersInternationalManOfMystery'', Vanessa climbs a ladder in an ''extremely'' short skirt. Austin watches appreciatively for a few seconds before remembering he has to go beat the Bad Guys and save the world.
* ''Film/{{Spaceballs}}'' has the droid Dot Matrix climbing a ladder [[SpaceIsNoisy between spaceships]], followed closely by Barf. She tells him to "stop looking up my can!".

* Literature/AnitaBlake is climbing down into a sewer with a friend below her. For added fun, Anita explicitly says that if a skirt covers her buttocks, it's long enough for her, and she's wearing a thong. Oh, and she ''knows'' her friend is looking up her skirt, but is so...[[ReallyGetsAround empowered?]] or something that she doesn't care.
* There's a comment at one point in the ''Literature/BookOfTheNewSun'' where Severian, the hero, says that he should walk in front of a female character because he's seen the state of her undergarments.
* The shop owner's wife, Judith Toumignon, in Gabriel Chevallier's novel ''Clochemerle'' is the hottest woman in the titular town. When coming to the shop, men often request an item from one of the top shelves. Guess why?
* Ladders aren't involved, but in the ''Literature/{{Xanth}}'' series, it's a good idea for a woman not to wear a skirt when crossing the invisible bridge that stretches across the Gap Chasm, as anyone walking below could look up and see what color her panties are.
* In ''Discworld/{{Masquerade}}'', Walter Plinge insists that Nanny Ogg precede him while descending a ladder, so he can't look up her dress. If any other man had mentioned it, he'd probably be due a thumping (as Nanny's in her seventies easily, and rather plump to go by official art), but he's sincere and more than a bit daft so it's clearly honest concern. As the series' [[DirtyOldMan Dirty Old Woman]], Nanny just contemplates that this may be the first time anyone's said that to her...
* In the first ''Literature/AdrianMole'' book Adrian helps his neighbor, Mrs. O'Leary to put up street decorations for the wedding of Prince Charles and Diana. When she climbs a ladder, he can't help noticing her knickers, which he finds surprisingly sexy for someone who goes to church every day and twice on Sundays. ("Black lace! With red-satin ribbons!")
* In Creator/StephenKing's ''Literature/{{It}}'', it's mentioned that as a kid, Ben Hanscom always looked up when passing under the staircases in the library because once, when he was looking up for no reason, he saw the panties of a pretty high-school girl.
* In ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'' series, Elayne Trakand is lifted into a ship on a plank attached to ropes, and has difficulty with the boatman who rowed her out there staring. Aviendha (who doesn't understand wetlander customs relating to nudity) hurls a knife into a wooden post to make the boatman understand that he mustn't look...then lifts her skirts to climb over the seats and retrieve her knife before riding up. The boatman is understandably confused.
* ''The Takers'' by Jerry Ahern. Mary-Frances Mulrooney is boarding a nuclear submarine and gets a WolfWhistle from a sailor down the hatch. An officer tells off the seaman responsible, then explains that [[ShesGotLegs none of the women who boarded earlier got a whistle like that]].

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* In ''Series/TwoBrokeGirls'', Han accidentally looks up Caroline's skirt while she is standing on a ladder writing on the blackboard. He rushes off in embarrassment but not before thanking her.
* An {{Inver|tedTrope}}sion: In the ''Series/DoctorWho'' 2012 Christmas special, [[Recap/DoctorWho2012CSTheSnowmen "The Snowmen"]], Clara and the Doctor ascend a long spiral staircase to a cloud where the Doctor has parked his TARDIS. The Doctor asks Clara to go first, but she refuses, telling the Doctor to keep his "eyes front". While the Doctor says he always keeps his eyes in front, Clara admits otherwise.
-->'''Doctor:''' ...Stop that!
-->'''Clara:''' [[CovertPervert No.]]
* During an extended sketch on ''Series/TheBennyHillShow'' taking place on a cruise ship Benny is standing next to a ladder/stairway when a few lovely birds in short skirts go up. He gets his eyeful, then calls a buddy over so he can peek too. As the buddy arrives and sets himself up, a ManInAKilt starts his way up the stairs, giving Benny's buddy a glimpse of what they don't wear beneath the kilt.
* In ''Series/AreYouBeingServed'', Wendy Richard's character refuses to go up a ladder with Captain Peacock standing at the bottom. He goes up himself. [[ItMakesSenseInContext Then a door opens and he ends up wearing a new hat]].

* Referenced in an episode of ''Radio/TheNewsQuiz'', where Kevin Day refers to the international sexual equality league table as "the ladder of feminism", before getting [[SidetrackedByTheAnalogy sidetracked by his own metaphor]]. "If there ''was'' a ladder of feminism, there'd be a bloke underneath it wolf-whistling."

* In ''Theatre/CactusFlower'', Toni, perched on a ladder stacking records on a top shelf, displays a lot of her legs to Julian[[note]]The script doesn't actually say that she's wearing a skirt; in the 1969 movie, Creator/GoldieHawn wears hot pants for this scene[[/note]]:
-->'''Julian''': Say, do you always stand up there like that?\\
'''Toni''': Like what?\\
'''Julian''': Well, if any customers stand where I'm standing... let's just say it's quite an angle.\\
'''Toni''' ''(Shrugs)'': Oh, that. Nobody here looks. Most of our customers are ''classical''.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/StarOceanTheLastHope'', the group is on top of the tower Citadel on Lemuris, they find a long cloth leading down to the ground. [[TheHero Edge]] suggests he go first to test for strength, at which Reimi complains and calls him a pervert. She gets her wish and heads down the cloth first (this entire scene makes no sense; she doesn't wear a skirt but a panel of thigh armor over top of leather shorts).
* ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil2'': Ada either leads Leon up a vertical ladder (while wearing what's almost a miniskirt), or asks him for a boost up to a high ledge. Leon is clearly taking in the view in the latter. ''RE 4'' also has at least one upskirt shot of Ada in a cutscene, e.g. when she saves Leon from Mendez.
** Attempting to do this to Ashley (or doing it by accident if an enemy throws you to the ground near her) in ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil4'' (again, playing as Leon) will cause her to [[DevelopersForesight call you a pervert]]. [[GuideDangIt Peeping from one very specific spot with a custom sniper rifle scope]] [[DevelopersForesight reveals that they are made of white knitted cotton]]. If you use her alternate outfits, which don't feature a skirt, [[DevelopersForesight she won't have that reaction]].
** [[ thedarkid]]'s excellent [[LetsPlay Let's Play]] of ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil2'' has a screencap of Leon getting a view up Ada's skirt. About 80% of the way down the page.
-->"Leon is never one to pass up an upskirt view. No matter how contrived the reason."
** In the remake of ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil'', you can unlock Jill's ''[[VideoGame/ResidentEvil3Nemesis RE3]]'' outfit. There are numerous cutscenes where she falls backward or is shown from below, allowing an upskirt view, especially when being pulled from the "Jill Sandwich" room.
* In ''VideoGame/TimeSplittersFuturePerfect'', Cortez is with the beskirted Jo-Beth for the horror-movie–themed level. Halfway through the level, they find an ominous hole in the ground with screams and roars coming from it. We then get this little gem:
-->'''Jo-Beth:''' (hearing the screams) go first.
-->(Cortez pauses; the camera [[MaleGaze focuses on her skirt]])
-->'''Cortez:''' Okay.
* Happens before the first full moon in ''VideoGame/{{Persona 3}}'' where Yukari warns the MC and [[CasanovaWannabe Junpei]]. However, in [[UpdatedRerelease Persona 3 Portable]] she only warns [[CasanovaWannabe Junpei]] no matter what gender the MC is and after Junpei retorts to her warning Yukari suggests burying him and leaving him behind. Also odd, as she wears a skirt that, in battle, would show everything if not for the fact that [[MagicSkirt her legs end in shadow past the hemline]].
* Though not a ladder, in ''VideoGame/FinalFantasyVII'', if you choose to climb the stairs up the Shinra Tower, Tifa will eventually realize she's wearing a miniskirt directly above her two male companions, stop, and refuse to continue until you go ahead of her.
* Subtly implied in ''VideoGame/SilentHill3''. The Otherworld transition in Brookhaven Hospital involves Heather ascending a very long ladder. About 3/4 of the way up, she passes by Valtiel, projecting 90 degrees from the wall in such a way that, [[TheBlank if he had a face,]] he'd be looking right up her skirt. Given the game's near-constant [[RuleOfSymbolism imagery of molestation and stalkers]], this is almost certainly intentional.
* The first game in the ''VideoGame/DisasterReport'' series features a point where a female character asks the male protagonist to climb up a ladder before she follows. Her stated reason for asking is: "I'm not wearing... um..." The game [[ButThouMust won't allow you to proceed]] until you agree. Later you can view photos stored in the camera of another character she traveled with and it reveals that he took a photo of her ([[MagicSkirt clothed]]) butt when he climbed a ladder behind her.
* Subverted in ''VideoGame/TalesOfGraces'', where at one point, Cheria is standing at the top of a stepladder that would provide the character you're controlling with a clear view if you were to stand underneath her. However, anytime you approach the ladder, she'll conveniently decide to crouch down to prevent this from happening (She's shown to be wearing ModestyShorts in some cutscenes, though).
* Zigzagged in ''VisualNovel/{{Danganronpa}}''. In the last chapter, Naegi and Kirigiri climb a ladder going up several storeys out of the trash dump, but she choses to go second to avoid this. Then in the next scene, the camera is looking straight up at both of them while they talk, and [[MagicSkirt her skirt is shadowed completely]]. After beating the game and getting to her School Mode ending, like with everyone else's School Mode ending (male and female) Naegi wins a pair of her underwear as a prize, and their description reads ([[MaleGaze as if speaking to the male audience]]) that they're so black that it'd be extremely difficult to see them from any angle (meaning it's possible the player actually was looking at them the whole time). [[ The official artbook says]] her skirt has "an iron wall defense."
** [[LampshadeHanging A lampshade gets hung on this one]] in ''WebVideo/DanganronpaParody'' [[ just before the two climb]] the "unnecessarily long ladder" (as the LemonyNarrator puts it).
** This also gets brought up later on in the series during an interaction between Komaru Naegi and Touko Fukawa in ''VideoGame/AbsoluteDespairGirls''.
** This ends up happening in the first chapter of ''VideoGame/NewDanganronpaV3'' where Kaede Akamatsu climbs up a ladder in the library to examine the top shelves, only to realise that Shuichi Saihara is stood below her getting an eyeful.
-->'''Shuichi:''' Ah! S-sorry!\\
'''Kaede:''' Oh. So you did see them, huh... ([[InternalMonologue Well, whatever. He can't unsee them]].)
* In ''VideoGame/TheLegendOfHeroesTrailsOfColdSteel'', [[BadassGay Angelica]] orders the boys to first go up, then the ladies, and finally her. Crow was the only one who got it and got pissed at Angelica for getting the good stuff while the rest of the girls aren't pleased when they finally climb up the ladder.

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* [[ This]] ''Webcomic/KeychainOfCreation'' strip has Marena badgering Secret about what she saw looking up her skirt.
-->'''Ten Winds:''' Yet another support for the Pants Faction.
* [[ This]] ''Webcomic/TheChosenFour'' strip has Paula telling an hypothetical Jeff he "better not look up" while descending in the mole-infested mine.
* [[ This]] ''Webcomic/{{Freefall}}'' strip does it with stairs and a tail as Florence leads Max Post up some stairs.
* [[ Here]] in the ''NeolithicCrossTimeCafe'' a Scottish tiger gets quite an eyeful of a female feline as he holds the ladder!
* [[ This]] ''Webcomic/TheOrderOfTheStick'' strip:
--> '''Belkar:''' Oh, and hey, Tsukiko, On behalf of all the men in the city: thanks for wearing a short skirt while flying. You've given me a lot to think about.
* Mace appears [[ stunned]] by [[ the view up his love interest Lilith's skirt]] as they descend a rock cliff together in Volume 2 of ''Webcomic/{{Dreamkeepers}}''. [[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/PhineasAndFerb'', when one of Candace's inventions [[ItMakesSenseInContext (long story)]] is picked up by Doofenshmirtz's hook, she's forced to dangle from the edges of her with her friend hanging on to her legs. She glances up her skirt but quickly looks down after that.
* In ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'', uniforms for both sexes are skirted, which leads to a scene with [[FanDisservice Zapp Branigan climbing a ladder and Kif looking away]], but [[{{Squick}} not out of respect for his captain's modesty]].

[[folder:Real Life]]
* Averted by the U.S. Navy, and maybe others. Sailors respect a lady's modesty (and perhaps the occasional Scotsman) by facing away. To hear some people tell it - not as much as you'd hope.
* The Savannah College of Art and Design had, very briefly a clear glass staircase. This was quickly replaced by a frosted glass staircase for this reason.