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->''"Quick, they're headed for the cardboard box district!"''
-->-- ''WesternAnimation/TheAngryBeavers''

The two cars are chasing through a run down light industrial area. There is a large pile of empty cardboard boxes, usually at a corner. Either the first car misses them and the second careens into them, scattering the boxes over the set, or the first strikes a glancing blow, sufficient to scatter the boxes into the path of the second car.

In a foot chase, a variation of the latter case happens often; the one in front will deliberately knock down such a pile as he passes, in order to delay his pursuers.

Sometimes, the boxes are strictly for show; the first car will send half of them tumbling every which way, and the second car will take care of the rest.

In rare cases, can be used to [[Franchise/MetalGear hide from pursuers]].

Unrelated to KidsPreferBoxes or CardboardBoxHome. See also SheetOfGlass and FruitCart. Judging by the ratio of parodies to straight examples on this page, this appears to be a DeadUnicornTrope. See TrashLanding for when cardboard boxes are used to soften the fall of characters.

[[AC: Advertising]]
* An advert by Nissan UK for the Almera [=GTi=] took the form of a spoof of ''Series/TheProfessionals''. At one point Bodie tells Doyle to drive down a narrow lane full of rubbish.
-->'''Doyle:''' Why?
-->'''Bodie:''' Litter. Makes the car look good.

[[AC: ComicBooks]]
* Deconstructively parodied in an issue of ''ComicBook/{{Spawn}}'', in which a cop car blasts through a pile of boxes...which had a homeless man sleeping under them.
* In ''{{ComicBook/Violine}}'', a car jumps onto a ship, crashing into a stack of crates to break its landing.

* An early example, if not the TropeMaker, was the [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_bxvGy1Uy70 car chase]] from the 1972 Italo-crime film ''The Master Touch''.
* ''Series/MysteryScienceTheater3000'' subject ''Film/FutureWar'' is infamous for its fight scenes with huge stacks of boxes as far as the eye can see, which are all clearly empty.
* ''Film/{{Lolita}}'' (1997). When Humbert finds that Dolores has left the hospital with her 'Uncle Gustav', he [[VillainousBreakdown drives wildly to the hospital]], smashing into dustbins as his car weaves down a narrow street.
* ''Film/{{Quick}}'': During the chase through the marketplace, the bike slams through a pile of empty cardboard boxes.
* ''Film/TomorrowNeverDies''. One of the land rovers chasing Film/JamesBond and [[SpearCounterpart Wai Lin]] drives into a truckload of boxes...containing fireworks, which (of course) [[StuffBlowingUp proceed to go off from the impact]].
* Played with in ''Film/AvengersAgeOfUltron''. The Hulk is rampaging through a city and smashes open a truck, spilling cardboard boxes all over the road.
* ''Film/{{Speed}}''. The "black guy with the sports car" ends up crashing it into a crash barrier made up of large containers of water (justified, as such barriers exist in real life). The heroine also has a nasty moment when she thinks she's hit a BabyCarriage, but it's actually full of empty drink cans being recycled by a homeless person.

* Subverted in an episode of ''Series/AshesToAshes''. Gene and Alex are on their way to a crime scene and come across an archway filled with stacked cardboard boxes. Alex quips "I know how this goes" and fully expects Gene to drive through them...and Gene simply sets the car in reverse and grumbles that he's gonna have to go around them.
* ''Series/TheProfessionals'' of course, and parodied in ''Series/TheComicStripPresents'' "Detectives on the Edge of a Nervous Breakdown" where 'Bonehead and Foyle' make a point of looking out for cardboard boxes to drive through during a chase scene so as to look more dramatic.
* Parodied in ''Series/FatherTed''. Dougal is forced to drive a milk float that [[Film/{{Speed}} will explode if it drops below 4 miles per hour]] and panics when he sees a stack of boxes at the end of the road. As he trundles slowly towards them, Ted re-stacks them on the opposite side of the road. After Dougal passes the boxes, Ted drives his car straight through the stack.
* Spoofed in ''Series/FunkySquad'', an Australian parody of 70's cop shows.
* In ''Franchise/PowerRangers'', going through boxes can touch off minor explosions that send sparks everywhere. The whole ''world'' is MadeOfExplodium.
* ''Series/StarskyAndHutch'' itself was infamous enough for this to spawn the above examples.
** Levels in the ''Starsky and Hutch'' VideoGame would give you a secondary objective of destroying X cardboard boxes.
** In Music/BillBailey's "Starsky And Hutch" segment, the duo are looking to make a getaway while pursued by the mob.
---> "How about that alley?"
---> "No, there's no boxes down that one. No, go down that one."
---> They go down another alley, no boxes. What are they going to do?
---> "Right, stop the car, get some boxes out of the boot, set them up, drive around the block..."
* Used in the ''Series/TopGearUK'' second hand police cars challenge, where Hammond is awarded points for flamboyant driving by crashing through a pile of gratuitous cardboard boxes slightly off the edge of the track.
** An earlier newspaper article by Jeremy Clarkson codified the trope:
--> '''Clarkson:''' A car crashing through an explosion is great cinema. A car crashing through some cardboard boxes is great television. A car coasting to a stop for no reason means they've run out of budget on ''Series/TheBill''.
** Including as part of the title sequence created by ''Series/TopGearUK'' for ''The Interceptors'', a non-existent Seventies cop show.
* Spoofed in ''Series/GarthMarenghisDarkplace'' when a chase scene ends with the MonsterOfTheWeek crashing into a huge mountain of cardboard boxes sitting in the middle of a forest for no apparent reason.
* Attempted in ''Series/TheBrittasEmpire'' when a wheelchair-bound drunk runs amok in the leisure centre, only for [[CloudCuckooLander Colin]] to stack them up to the point no one can see him coming. [[spoiler: Subverted in that those boxes aren't empty and a leak of Sodium Hypochlorite leads to the centre's closure due to a subsequent chlorine gas cloud/]]

[[AC: Music]]
* In the [[https://youtu.be/ma9I9VBKPiw?t=55 music video]] for Music/ArcticMonkeys' "Fluorescent Adolescent", a car burst through a pile of cartboard boxes.

[[AC: Professional Wrestling ]]
* A ForgottenTrope but cardboard boxes were a staple of Wrestling/{{WCW}} when falls outside of the arena needed to be broken and noise needed to be made.
* Wrestling/{{TNA}}, in it's effort to be WCW, also used cardboard boxes, although they use them more sparingly, usually to cushion wrestlers for dangerous spots, and they're often disguised to look more dangerous than they really are, though at the 2007 ''Slammiversary'' a tarp exposing some [[SpecialEffectsFailure fell off]] during the match between Abyss and Tomko.

[[AC: Real Life ]]
* In 2012, British stuntman Gary Connery became the first person to land a wingsuit without a parachute, by crashing into a huge pile of 18,600 cardboard boxes, arranged into a landing strip that measured 350 feet (106.7 meters) long, 45 feet (13.7 meters) wide and 12 feet (3.7 meters) high.

[[AC: WebOriginal]]
* During the [[WebVideo/TheNostalgiaCritic Nostalgia Critic]] vs. [[WebVideo/TheAngryVideoGameNerd Angry Video Game Nerd]] Final Battle, which takes place in the Nerd's basement, the Critic is sent flying into a pile of cardboard boxes that just happen to be set up there. He calls the Nerd out on this:
--> '''NC''': Who keeps piles of boxes around? Honestly?
--> '''AVGN''': [[BerserkButton Oh, don't you talk about my boxes!]] [[CompanionCube I like boxes!]]
* ''WebAnimation/HomestarRunner'': Parodied in "Dangeresque Puppet Squad: The Curly-Fried Caper". Dangeresque and Dangeresque Too chase bad guy Szechuan Steve to outside an abandoned warehouse, where Dangeresque attacks piles of cardboard boxes for no apparent reason while Dangeresque Too runs around dramatically jumping over garbage dumpsters.

[[AC: WesternAnimation]]
* From an episode of ''WesternAnimation/TheAngryBeavers'' which parodied ''Series/StarskyAndHutch'': "Quick, they're headed for the cardboard box district!". In fact, cardboard boxes were a running gag in the episode.
* ''WesternAnimation/DextersLaboratory'': Parodied in "No Power Trip"; Dexter is in a car careening down a hill, and after hitting a FruitCart we see a guy selling "empty cardboard boxes" on the street corner, which Dexter also ends up driving through.
* Lampshaded in ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'', when the cops are taking Bart for a day on the job. While they are explaining that it's not the action-oriented job Hollywood makes it out to be, they are interrupted by a heist and immediately start a high-speed chase through an alley full of cardboard boxes. As their car sends them scattering everywhere, one of the cops nonchalantly exclaims, "Damn boxes!"