A classic ploy of Heroes
alike for getting close to their opponents is to pose as hotel room service. Naturally, this works best if their target actually ordered some; people tend to get suspicious otherwise (though surprisingly not always, in Medialand).
They may be delivering poison, a bug, or a bomb; launching a sneak attack; passing equipment or information to an inside man; freeing a hostage; or just performing reconnaissance.
Other kinds of delivery services may be substituted for hotel room service, depending on where they're staying and other circumstances. Apparently, half of all high-class call girls are actually assassins.
Also see Deadly Delivery
, Sickbed Slaying
, Ransacked Room
, Janitor Impersonation Infiltration
, Inn of No Return
. Not to be confused with Fan Disservice
open/close all folders
Anime and Manga
Live Action TV
- Heroes did it too, when Hiro and Ando infiltrate a hotel room in order to retrieve a woman's bag.
- Alias: Sydney Bristow has done this on at least one occasion.
- Inversion: In an episode of Kolchak: The Night Stalker, Carl Kolchak is waiting nerve-wracked in his hotel room with a cross in one hand and a sharp oak stake in the other to jump the vampiress call-girl he's been hunting for days as she comes through the door (which has a cross drawn on its inside in lipstick!). It turns out that the pimp substituted another girl at the last minute, and Hilarity Ensues.
- Played with in an episode of NCIS where Tony and Ziva are required to go undercover as married assassins. Since they're being watched by the villains, their own agents surreptitiously drop off necessary surveillance equipment in the guise of room service.
- In the same episode a pretty female FBI agent does the same thing disguised as a maid, much to Tony's appreciation.
- Used with spectacular non-success by Weasel on an episode of Family Matters when Eddie, Weasel, and Waldo wanted to meet a pop star.
- In the early '70's Saturday Night Live, a recurring sketch was the Landshark, a huge shark that tried to get into people's apartments by knocking on the door and saying, "Uh, candygram..."
- During a Discovery Channel documentary on (actual) ninja, some individuals where asked to act as bodyguards and "protect" a target (prevent his cap from being taken off) and were told that the attacker would strike like a ninja of antiquity would. He disguises as a set maintenance personnel to get through the bodyguards. Though at first they're reluctant to let him in, but he succeeds in the end.
- In I Love Lucy, Lucy does this several times on their trip to Hollywood to get close to celebrities.
- Two and a Half Men: Rose did this to Charlie once. Notable as she had to fly in from England to do it.
- An episode of The Fall Guy had Colt going after a bounty who will not leave his house for anything. After talking to the law enforcement official who had been watching the house and finding out the guy has been subsisting on takeout delivery, Colt goes up to the front door, posing as a pizza delivery guy (he just happened to have a pizza box in his truck). Subverted in that the guy loudly yells "I DIDN'T ORDER A PIZZA!" before charging out the house and attacking Colt. Fortunately for him, Colt won the fight because the pizza box contained a barbell weight.
- Played with in the Mission: Impossible episode "The Town"; a group of enemy agents plan to use this trope to assassinate an Iron Curtain defector but are stopped when the IMF impersonate their leader and call off the hit.
- Used by the good guys early in the Star Wars New Jedi Order series. A New Republic Intelligence operation on what's basically a cruise liner in space, a mock conversation between passengers and an attendant is used as the recognition code.
- In Girl Genius, someone almost managed to assassinate an injured Baron Wulfenbach by pretending to be a nurse.
- Archer, in its typical parody/deconstruction of all things Spy Genre, uses this trope a few times. An early episode of the first season has Archer training Cyril to be a field agent and lays out a hypothetical scenario where its unclear if this is in effect or if the three muscle-bound guys at the door really are hotel employees (Archer's point being that you can solve the problem either way by brandishing your gun at them: killing them if they are assassins or scaring them into not asking for a tip if they are just employees). It is later played straight in the second season when Archer is trying to protect a Jail Bait german heiress from kidnappers at a ski resort.