You'll never know how great a kiss can feel,
'til we stop at the top of a Ferris Wheel...
— Palisades Park
, Freddy Cannon
It was our first date. There was a carnival in town, and we went on the Ferris Wheel. I knew right there that he was the one.
— Leone Krutsinger
No date at the Amusement Park
, whether planned or unplanned
, "Just the two of us" or "Let's all go together", is complete without a ride on the Ferris Wheel. In most Shoujo
animes with such a date, the Ferris Wheel is the replacement for the often cliché Tunnel of Love: the cars only seat two people at a time, are perfectly private with no chance for interruptions
, provide a romantic view of the city and amusement park lights, and encourage that now or never
moment for the couple to share their feelings for each other.
The scenes are easily predictable
, based upon the viewers' current knowledge of the characters and plot from previous episodes/chapters. Some recurring examples:
- Often times, the less-forward of the two will say something to the effect of "Actually, there's one more I wanted to ride, if that's okay with you." Cue the Luminescent Blush, Shy Finger Twiddling, and the shy loss of eye contact.
- One can expect, since the situation calls for it, that the Ferris Wheel is the last ride for the couple in the episode.
- Stereotypically, the female in the car invariably has acrophobia.
- Following the previous or not, a sudden jerk by the wind or a technical glitch in the system causes her to cling to him in a rather adorable way.
- May even lead to the couple's First Kiss, unless of course the aforementioned sudden jerk says otherwise.
- In hentai series, the above could have ecchi results.
- If anyone is trying to spy on one or both protagonists, inevitably he/she drags someone else with them, and any of the aforementioned points above may occur to this pair as well.
Not to be confused with the Ferris Wheel of Doom
Be advised! This trope generally occurs at the end of an episode/chapter/series and may spoil a Relationship Upgrade or Happily Ever After for you!
Anime and Manga
- Akikan!! - Najimi takes Kakeru up on the Ferris Wheel at the water park in episode 8. Her affection is clearly one-sided, however, and a lot of the moment is made possible, and then ruined, by Kakeru's sleepiness. Also, Played for Laughs, Kochikaze and Amaji ride it to spy on the former pair.
- Great Teacher Onizuka - Urumi drags Onizuka out on a date and tries to kiss Onizuka, but he's too honorable to go through with it, wherein he knocks himself unconscious.
- Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch - In the anime, Kaito and Lucia have a moment like this that ends in jumping out of the ferris wheel car.
- Mirai Nikki has one of these. It's when Yukiteru Amano begins to genuinely return Yuno Gasai's feelings for him. Too bad that same night doesn't end nearly as well as the day itself went...
- Ganta Igarashi promises to take Shiro on one of these in Deadman Wonderland at the end of the Scar Chain arc. He keeps this promise, but this probably wasn't what he had in mind.
- Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu: Purezza - Classic example in episode 9 on the Ferris Wheel shown above, with the interruption being a phone call from Haruka's annoying little sister.
- Nononono - Shiriya convinces Nono to ride the Ferris Wheel with him and Kishitani. Once up high, Shiriya throws Kishitani out of the cab and into the lake so he can put the moves on Nono. She panics, naturally, and kicks him out too, though he was less fortunate to already have a broken leg from before.
- Shingetsutan Tsukihime - Subverted in the amusement park episode (perhaps the only part of the adaptation that didn't have anything to do with the original game). Unable to decide who rides with whom, the characters draw lots, and Arcueid ends up in one car with her rival Ciel; Shiki, with his own sister Akiha; and his best buddy Arihiko, with their classmate Satsuki (which is less obvious, but Arihiko tried hitting on Akiha, while Satsuki has a crush on Shiki). The ride is pretty awkward for all of them.
- Played straight in the manga adaptation - Arcueid and Shiki are the only ones who went to the park, and the Ferris Wheel provides a quiet moment for Arcueid to reflect on how all the knowledge she absorbed about human society never prepared her for the fun of actually experiencing it for herself.
- SHUFFLE!! - Rin nearly shares a cookie with Asa on the Ferris Wheel towards the end of Episode 18, but the ride's abrupt end spoiled it for them.
- Totally Captivated - Played for Laughs when Ewon gets forced into a Ferris Wheel ride with Mookyul and Killer Bear (a former mafioso), the latter of whom thinks Ewon is Mookyul's lover. All kinds of awkwardness ensues.
- Ryo Urawa invites Ami Mizuno to go on the Ferris wheel with him at the end of an episode of Sailor Moon.
- Played with in Koko Ni Iru Yo. Hikage goes on a date with Hinata at an amusement park, but it's Teru who she shares a ferris wheel moment with to cheer him up.
- Kamisama Kiss features one between Tomoe and Nanami, though considering the nature of their relationship, it is a little more conflict driven than other examples.
- In the first episode of Koi Kaze, Koshiro and Nanoka go to an amusement park together. They ride the ferris wheel, and have a conversation that leads to them feeling a very strong connection. This was before they knew that they were siblings.
- The Life Story of The Flash - Barry proposes to Iris on a Ferris Wheel.
- In an Archie Comics Super Duck story, Dapper, Supe's rival for Uwanna's affections, is the third wheel on their amusement park date. Dapper suggests Supe ride the ferris wheel, then bribes the operator to stop it once Supe's at the top. His scheme backfires when Uwanna decides to join Supe on the ride at the last moment, and the operator refuses to go back on the prank. The last panel shows Supe and Uwanna in silhouette after dark, enjoying a romantic moment atop the wheel.
- The Living Daylights - James Bond bribes the operator to stall the Ferris Wheel, in order to give him and Kara added time alone.
- The Notebook - Noah climbs onto a moving Ferris Wheel to ask Allie out, right in front of her current date. He even blackmails her by threatening to let himself fall.
- The Third Man invokes this trope for emotional dissonance. Instead of romantic seclusion, the setting allows an open discussion of crime and murder.
- Kamen Rider x Kamen Rider Fourze & OOO: Movie Wars Megamax has one between Gentaro and Nadeshiko.
- Charlotte's Web - When this happens to Fern and Henry, Wilbur realizes he is no longer the most important thing in her life.
- In Smallville Lana gets one of these with a random guy in Magnetic. Shame he is a psycho.
- Chuck - Season 2 Episode 8 "Chuck Versus the Gravitron" shows Chuck and his then-girlfriend Jill on one, leading to their First Kiss. It then gets a Dark Reprise when the same thing happens years later, and Jill is a Fulcrum agent who then holds Chuck at gunpoint.
- Scrubs - Played for Laughs. The Ferris Wheel stops, leaving Dr Cox, Jordan, JD, and Danni trapped at the top. Rather than this leading to Danni clinging to JD in an adorable way, it leads to JD throwing up.
- On The O.C., Ryan and Marissa share their very first kiss on top of a ferris wheel. Marissa kisses Ryan in attempts of calming Ryan down from his fear of heights.
- The Vampire Diaries - In Season 2 Episode 2 "Brave New World", Stefan leaps up with Elena (using his vampire ability of super leap or jump) onto the ferris wheel and the two share a kiss and a romantic tender moment after a day of chaos.
- Palisades Park by Freddy Cannon - See the lyrics at the top of this trope.
- Final Fantasy VII - At the Gold Saucer; whomever ends up sharing the cab with Cloud depends on certain conversation choices you've made up to that point. Play it
wrong right, and you have a date with Barret.
- Pokémon Black and White - In Nimbasa City, a total of five different trainers can be battled outside of the Ferris Wheel over the course of the game, one of them being Team Plasma's N. Upon winning, you get a cutscene of both characters riding the wheel. The conversations are coupled with double entendres. Toned down/censored in the English versions.
- In Tokimeki Memorial during a date to the amusement park in the winter season after Shiori is in "enraptured" state, choose to ride the ferris wheel (Shiori's favorite ride). During the ride the Ferris wheel stalls, leaving the pair trapped up high. Shiori becomes frightened, but the protagonist takes her mind off it by showing her what a great view it is from up there.
- Happens again in the first Girl's Side game: during a date with Kei on the ferris wheel, it stops and he calms the protagonist down by telling her a story from his past.
- At the beginning of The Secret Island of Dr. Quandary, the player is at a carnival and can get different comments from clicking on the crowd, the ticket booth, the fortune-teller's booth, and the Ferris Wheel. One of the Ferris Wheel comments is "Harder! Harder!"
- Phineas and Ferb - Just check the page image.
- Teen Titans - Multiple instances between Starfire and Robin, as well as Beastboy and Terra.
- X-Men: Evolution: Nightcrawler and Boom-Boom's date had this, although Boom-Boom being Boom-Boom, it didn't really follow the "shy, scared female" stereotype.
- Doug had an episode that involved Doug trying to have one of these with Patti. He manages to get a seat with Patti on the ferris wheel, but the fact that they're riding "the fastest Ferris wheel on Earth" dampens the romantic mood somewhat.
- Danny and Valerie on Danny Phantom.
- Played for laughs in a Robot Chicken sketch, where the boyfriend convinced the operator to stop the Ferris wheel so he could propose to his girl friend. She bluntly rejects him, and they are left awkwardly stuck on the Ferris wheel until it can be started back up. It even continues into another sketch later in the episode, where they are still stuck and the boyfriend asks again, just to be sure.