People in prison end up having a cellmate who worked with them during their criminal career, despite the fact that no reasonable jailer would do something like that.
Examples:Anime and Manga
- In Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann, Simon is jailed with Viral, the Dragon of the previous Big Bad.
- IF it isn't just Lupin III in the jail, the others are invariably either in the same cell, or adjacent cells.
- Lupin III Operation Return The Treasures: the first time Zenigata arrests Lupin, he puts Jigen in the same cell.
- A sequel comic to Superman Returns has Lex Luthor pull strings to get a less-than-bright cellmate, specifically so he can have an audience for his genius plans.
- Just about anytime The Punisher ends up in prison, he runs into a hierarchy of prisoners who more or less run the place. For example, a Mafia family get huge, almost customised cells, with all the luxuries that can be brought in there, including TV sets, porno mags and blowjobs (from other inmates).
- In Lucky Luke, the four Dalton Brothers will always get a cell together. Add to that the fact that it is a Cardboard Prison and they are all Tunnel Kings, and they will also very easily escape together (each digging their own tunnel no less).
- The Beagle Boys (Disney) in various incarnations usually also get a cell together.
- Superman II: Lex Luthor and his henchman, Otis, are shown sharing the same cell in Metropolis Prison. They also work together in the prison laundry.
- Batman & Robin. At the end, former partners Poison Ivy and Mr. Freeze are put in the same cell. Mr. Freeze promises to get revenge on Poison Ivy for trying to kill his wife.
Mr. Freeze: Surprise. I'm your new cellmate. And I've come to make your life a living hell. Prepare for a bitter harvest.
- Presumably there was some bribery involved in arranging the Batman and Robin example, considering that Gotham City prisons are unlikely to be co-ed.
- In Goodfellas, Henry Hill shares the same prison accommodation as his gangster pals. Truth in Television for them and many other organized crime figures at the time, usually achieved through corrupt prison staff.
- In My Cousin Vinny, Stan and Bill share a prison cell throughout the film.
- The Usual Suspects, the five main characters first meet in a jail cell after being rounded up for a lineup, and this is revealed to be part of Keyser Soze's plot. They lampshade this as being improbable, noting how when you're in a lineup it's almost always you and four volunteers the police hired to fill out the lineup.
- At the end of No Man's Land 4: Hot Rocks, the members of the all-female gang of jewel thieves are all locked up in the same cell.
- In The Elite Squad 2, the inmates of the prison complex are sorted according to their gang affiliation.
- When imprisoned in Malfoy Manor in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Harry and Ron are put in the same room as Luna. It does help that the 'prison' is basically the basement of Malfoy Manor.
- In Interesting Times, Rincewind is thrown in prison by the Emperor. He quickly finds his old travel companion, Twoflower, is in the adjacent cell.
- In Oz, Ryan O'Reily arranges to have his brother Cyril become his cellmate so he can protect him.
- In My Name Is Earl, Earl finds that he is cellmates with an old friend of his, Frank.
- Same thing with his first cellmate, Donny. Except Donny escaped on Earl's first night (he would've included Earl in the escape, but he got hungry and ate the other watermelon).
- One of the major conflicts in Orange Is the New Black is between main character Piper and her ex-girlfriend, Alex. Piper was sent to prison for helping Alex smuggle drug money.
- In the Prison Episode "Folsom Prison Blues" (S02, Ep19) of Supernatural, Sam and Dean do not share a cell, but they are in the same cell block with cells right across from each other and are allowed to spend time together in the yard and during meals. Sam's cell is B309; Dean's cell is B310.
- Lampshaded and subverted in Thrill Me: Nathan tells Richard that they'll be cellmates, and Richard points out how ridiculous an idea that is. It's not ridiculous—Nathan's had the guards bribed.
- Defied by the Evil Overlord List:
36. I will not imprison members of the same party in the same cell block, let alone the same cell. If they are important prisoners, I will keep the only key to the cell door on my person instead of handing out copies to every bottom-rung guard in the prison.
- In Gargoyles, when the pack are in prison, Fox and Hyena are sharing a cell, as are Wolf and Jackal.
- Also, when Tony Dracon loses his private cell privileges, his new cellmate is Thomas Brod. While no reasonable jailer would pair up criminals who've worked together, neither would they pair up known enemies like Dracon and Brod. The ensuing fist fight they get into should explain why.
- In the second Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon, the four turtles get a cell together, when they get captured by the Triceratons. When Raphael wins a fight under the dinner, he is however in another cell alone, so the others have to free him when they escape.
- In Futurama, Bender and Fry get implicated in a bank robbery with Roberto, a maniacal robot. Once they are imprisoned in the robot insane asylum, Fry's cellmate turns out to be... Roberto!
"I'm just practicing my stabbing motions!"
- The Simpsons: Sideshow Bob has been seen with his family in jail.
- In The Spectacular Spider-Man, Montana of the Enforcers, aka Shocker, and Quentin Beck, aka Mysterio share a cell in the Vault.
- In Star Wars: The Clone Wars episode Deception, Moralo Eval, who is incarcerated by the Republic, plans on breaking out along with his cellmate, Cane Bane. The reason why Moralo wants to break out is because he was hired to kidnap Chancellor Palpatine.