A common Sitcom
trope in which one character accidentally sees another character of the opposite sex in the shower. Usually, Bob will turn on the water, then leave the room for a moment. Alice, oblivious to Bob's presence, steps into the water and closes the shower curtain. Bob then returns, finishes stripping down, and opens the curtain back up, so they each get a view of the other naked.
Notably, Alice will never stop to think something along the lines of, "Wait a sec, I never turned on the shower..."
Often, but not always, the two characters have a history of sexual tension
. If so, the incident typically leads to awkwardness and mutual avoidance, until they decide to pretend That Didn't Happen
. If not, it's at least a source of Fanservice
Any time someone contrives to invoke this trope
, they're almost guaranteed to catch the wrong person and suffer for it somehow, often by exposure to Fan Disservice
A sub-trope of Shower Scene
. Related to Accidental Pervert
. Distinct from Naked First Impression
in that it's limited to bathroom settings and characters who already know each other. Compare Landing in Someone's Bathtub
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Anime & Manga
Films — Live-Action
- In the 2008 comedy Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins, Reggie tries to sneak in on his cousin RJ's girlfriend in the shower but finds his cousin Betty there instead. The actors improvised their angry exchange.
- The film version of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy has this with Arthur and Trillian, as part of their newly introduced love story.
- The Mr. Bean movie. David turns on the shower and then sits on his bed for a while contemplating his worries. When he enters the shower, he finds that Bean decided to take one in the meantime. They both freak out, but David is forced to answer the phone while all this is happening.
- In Dave, the title character (while impersonating the President) is taking a shower when the First Lady storms in and demands to speak to him face to face.
- In Captain Ron, Martin and Katherine are fooling around in the shower when the door jams and the shower begins to flood. Captain Ron ends up coming to their rescue, much to their embarrassment, and afterward tells their son that his parents were "playing 'hide-the-salami' in the shower".
- Happens in So I Married an Axe Murderer where Mike Meyers' believes that he is walking in on his girlfriend, but it's actually her roommate.
- In The Proposal, Margaret is at Andrew's parents' house (before their Citizenship Marriage) and leaves the towel outside the bathroom when she showers. She tries to get it, but their dog stands outside the door and starts barking loudly. She manages to trap the dog in the bathroom, only to bump into a naked Andrew who was also about to take a shower.
- In the Disgaea Novels Laharl accidentally walks in on Flonne while she is in a hot spring. He blushes and quickly walks out.
- In an early Who's the Boss? episode, Tony catches Angela coming out of the shower. This helps set up the series' Will They or Won't They? tension.
- Allegedly, the director had Judith Light flash Tony Danza for real during the taping in order to produce a suitably shocked reaction, making this an example of Enforced Method Acting.
- Similarly with David and his housekeeper Mickey in the short-lived, very Fanservice-y eighties Sitcom We Got It Made.
- Referenced in Family Guy when Peter and his neighbours win a trophy for a parade float commemorating the Who's the Boss? scene.
- In Friends, Chandler accidentally sees Rachel topless as she exits the shower. Rachel then tries to walk in on Chandler as payback, but gets Joey instead. Joey then tries to get even by walking in on Rachel, but gets Monica. Monica then tries to catch Joey, but instead sees Joey's dad, bringing the Zany Scheme Chicken to a screeching halt. Notably, Joey's father is completely unfazed.
- In Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, Iolaus stumbles across Nebula taking a shower on board her ship.
- In Home Improvement, Tim thinks it's his wife in the shower so he enters the bathroom and takes off his clothes, but once he pulls open the curtains, he instead sees his sister-in-law. Noticing his subsequent awkwardness, his wife teases him with "You liked what you saw, didn't you?"
- In Diff'rent Strokes, Kimberly mischieviously takes a picture of Arnold's bare bottom in the shower. The photo is accidentally published in the newspaper, complicating his run for class president.
- In Hope And Faith the title characters, trying to disinfect Hope's daughter Sydney's pierced tongue, head into the shower with her, dressed, so as not to spill hydrogen peroxide on the rug. Just then Hope's husband Charlie comes in asking for her. Hope, who doesn't want him to know about the unauthorized piercing, claims to be showering, so Charlie drops his bathrobe to join her and pulls the curtain, inadvertently exposing himself to his daughter and sister-in-law.
- In Ugly Betty, Daniel walks in on the villainous Wilhelmina thinking it's his love interest. Turns out that they're sisters.
- In Family Matters, Urkel is about to step into the shower when he goes to get a loofah from his room. In the meantime, Laura steps into the shower herself, even though the water's already running, and sure enough....
- In Kyle XY, Kyle walks in on Jessie shortly after she moves in with the Tragers. Jessie responds with exactly the level of embarrassment you'd expect — that is, absolutely none. Kyle, on the other hand...
- On an episode of Seinfeld, Jerry's girlfriend walks in on George after he's been swimming, which horrifies George because he had just climbed out of a cold pool. ("Shrinkage!") George spends the rest of the episode contriving excuses to walk in on her naked to even the score.
- LOST has a scene shortly after the hatch is discovered where Jack comes upon Kate in the shower. Although he doesn't see anything, it's still an extremely awkward moment between them.
- Played with in an episode of Grey's Anatomy. Sloan and Lexie are dating, but Callie, Sloan's bisexual ex-girlfriend, deliberately walks in on Sloan in the shower to ask him a question. Neither of them are weirded out, but for Lexie, it's very uncomfortable.
- Due to living arrangements with Meredith, almost everybody had it happen to them at one moment or another. Usually while the people in the shower are having sex and it has to remain a secret.
- Subverted in The X-Files when Marita is talking to Krycek in the shower. The characters have history, but they appear to be quite comfortable.
- But played straight with Mulder and Scully themselves. There's a brief but spectacularly awkward scene when they have to shower to remove possible contagion. Though there seems to be separate showers for each of them, the dividing wall is not particularly useful, privacy wise, and they both look very uncomfortable with the situation (and try extremely hard not to check each other out).
- Given that it's definitely not the first time in the series they'd seen each other naked, the awkwardness probably comes more from the fact that they're both naked at the same time and neither of them were unconcious.
- Has happened repeatedly on Home and Away, at least three or four times in Irene's house.
- Charmed: Prue walks in on her brother-in-law Leo in the shower. Sister/wife Piper walks in at the same time and is not impressed.
- In another episode Phoebe walks in on Piper and Leo in the shower together. A flashback episode where Phoebe and Paige get sent back in time has the same scene reused only with present Phoebe walking in this time.
- An episode of Reba has Reba, in her eagerness to relax, too immersed in her easy-listening music to notice that her ex-husband was using her shower equipment at the time as she prepares for her own shower. The result only stressed her out more, as she told him: "I'm under strict order to keep my stress to the minimum, AND YOU'RE NOT HELPING ONE BIT!"
- Two Guys, a Girl and a Pizza Place gives us Johnny's various attempts to walk in on Sharon in the shower. Unfortunately he gets Ashley the first and Pete's grandpa the second time. This was certainly not inspired by the ''Friends'' example from above.
- In an episode from The George Lopez Show, George hears a shower running in the bathroom. Expecting to see his wife inside, he goes inside unannounced in the hope of surprising her... only to see his mother instead!
- The New Adventures Of Beans Baxter: The opening scene of "There's No Place Like Omsk" has Beans catching Soviet defector Svetlana (played by Miss Universe Shawn Weatherly) in the shower.
- In Greek mythology, Artemis was the goddess of the hunt, and one of her attributes was her chasteness. A mortal hunter named Actaeon happened to see her while she was bathing the woods. Artemis was so furious that she turned him into a stag, and he was run down and torn to pieces by his own dogs.
- Dennis Mitchell has walked in on his mother in the bath several times. While this is awkward for his mother, Dennis is solely concerned with whatever matter he barged into the bathroom to discuss and this is more to do with him having no sense of privacy.
- Brighton Beach Memoirs: Eugene tries to do this with his hot cousin Nora after being coached on the technique by his older brother, but it backfires on him when she accidentally walks in on him using the toilet.
- Happens differently to normal in Max Payne 2, as you might expect when the two people are a cop and an assassin.
- Solatorobo does it twice. Modesty Towels prevented those moments from being even more awkward.
- Subverted in Fate/stay night when Shirou walks in on Saber in the bath. He feels really embarrassed for a bit but she tells him to get over it, she doesn't consider herself a girl anyway. Played straight later when Shirou does it again, and Saber uses the moment to start wondering if Shirou thinks she looks too muscular and unfeminine for mutual awkwardness.
- Happens in Misfile here when Vashiel stumbles into Ash's bathroom while already looking for tissue.
- This World Of Fizz storyline has Carlos accidentally walking in on Kelli as she is stepping out of the shower.
- Parodied in The Simpsons when Marge comes upon a decidedly un-sexy Burns in the shower.
- Done straight on 6teen with Jonesy seeing Jen completely naked and freaking out over it because they're stepsiblings.
- Seen in SpongeBob SquarePants. In "New Digs" Mr.Krabs enters his office to see that SpongeBob has hung floral print curtains in his office. Upset, he yanks them down to reveal SpongeBob's Mother taking a shower only for her husband to walk in and get upset with him and as usual with the cartoon, all hell breaks loose.
- On King of the Hill, Bobby walks in on his cousin Luanne. A jealous Joseph then keeps trying to do the same.
- Happens in Code Lyoko episode "Uncharted Territory", where Aelita is tricked by Sissi into entering the boys' shower room. We don't know what she saw, since it stays an outside shot with just some surprised yells heard. Ulrich and Odd, wet and wearing Modesty Towels, are prompt to get her out.
- In the Home Movies episode "Shore Leave", Brendon is staying the weekend at Fenton's house and walks in on Fenton's mom in the shower. As he has his camera with him and shooting a movie, he catches the moment on video. Coach McGuirk ends the show trying to put the footage online.
- In the Adventure Time episode "Marceline's Closet", Finn and Jake end up stuck hiding in Marceline's bedroom closet when Jake ignores her warning to stay out of her house when she's out, and she comes back at the wrong time. At one point Finn tries to sneak out and see what she's doing... which turns out to be taking a shower. He manages to avoid being detected, but it's heavily implied he accidentally saw Marceline naked.