->''"I believe in coincidences. Coincidences happen every day. But I don't '''trust''' coincidences."''
-->-- '''Elim Garak''', ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine''

As any student of cause and effect can tell you, a coincidence is when two or more events happen either simultaneously or in sequence, without any sort of obvious (and in most cases, inobvious) causal connection. Generally coincidences surprise us because, given their nature, we weren't expecting them. Most people know that sometimes things happen at the same time, but some people just refuse to believe it. There are, after all, reasons people say "where there's smoke there's fire." They also often say "There Are No Coincidences."

Interestingly, this line can be made by both the AgentScully and the AgentMulder. One believes that the improbable has a simpler explanation and one believes that it has a fantastic one. Both are GenreSavvy in that ContrivedCoincidence is something that should usually be avoided in serious plots.

Usually used either
# to motivate investigation into possible reasons why an apparent coincidence sprung from a common cause -- the ConspiracyTheorist has an advanced case of it,[[note]]Most of the time, perhaps, but not all of the time.[[/note]] and no willingness to stop the investigation.
# or as a MaybeMagicMaybeMundane way to say BecauseDestinySaysSo.

This belief is Rule One of WildMassGuessing. The GenreSavvy are prone to it, because fictionally, the LawOfConservationOfDetail militiates against its falsity.

Compare ChekhovsGun.


[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* Yuuko from ''Manga/XxxHOLiC''. This idea is her whole entire shtick and a major plot point, if not ''the'' major point of the series; though she also comments that the ultimate cause of an event may be an incident so minor that it's next to impossible to recognize the connection, even ''with'' supernatural help. She has a point -- for example, the only reason that we, the readers, know that Doumeki's destroying one specific spiderweb while housecleaning is at all relevant to the story is that the manga devotes an entire page to depicting it, as opposed to the many other spiderwebs that have presumably been destroyed at some point or another without being shown. (Watanuki's ''job'' is being Yuuko's live-in slave, after all.) [[LawOfConservationOfDetail Unlike real life, fictional works have limited space, so only the significant events are depicted]].
** The phrase came before in an older work, ''Manga/CardcaptorSakura'' and even before the idea of fate had come before in most of Clamp's works, since the beginning.
** This was also prominent in ''Manga/TsubasaReservoirChronicle'' which was the sister series to ''Manga/XxxHOLiC'' and (sort of) tied in with the original ''Manga/CardcaptorSakura'' series.
* In ''Manga/TheWorldOfNarue'', sudden {{Contrived Coincidence}}s are a sign of [[spoiler:impending interference by the mysterious "Serpents" which exist beyond space and time, and which can send causality out to lunch]]. There are no coincidences, but there are acausal ''side effects''.
* ''LightNovel/NoGameNoLife'': The siblings don't believe that a game of "pure chance" exists. Whether its Black Jack or the probability that the next person to walk into a given alley is a given gender, there are any number of invisible factors that make the outcome inevitable. This is why information is so important.
* ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'':
** Naruto's birth was the source of this speculation for several years. It was too much of a coincidence that the Kyuubi attacked on the day the Fourth Hokage's son was born, leaving him a convenient vessel for him to seal the biju in. Left at a loss due to missing pieces, most believed the stress of the attack caused Kushina to go into labor prematurely, which presumably killed her. [[spoiler:The truth reveals that none of it was a coincidence at all. Kushina was Kurama's previous jinchuriki, and female jinchuriki are at the risk of having their biju being released during childbirth due to the seal weakening. Kurama attacked that day because someone was able to release him from Kushina after Naruto's birth]].
** While confronting Obito, Madara points out that [[spoiler: the events surrounding Rin's death happened a little ''too'' conveniently to turn Obito to darkness, and reveals that he orchestrated the whole thing to make sure Obito would help him. The only thing in that situation that was a coincidence was Kakashi, who Rin used to kill herself via SuicideByCop]].
** [[spoiler: Madara’s resurrection in the 4th Ninja War was also a case of this. Obito never intended to resurrect him as he aimed to take control of the Moon’s Eye Plan. He would have succeeded if not for Kabuto resurrecting Madara with the Edo Tensei. It’s ultimately revealed that Black Zetsu was the one who led Kabuto to the location of Madara’s corpse as part of his plan to bring back Kaguya Ootsutsuki.]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* Franchise/{{Batman}} has a hard time accepting that coincidence is the reason for anything happening. Batman is right most of the time.
-->'''Batman:''' [[Recap/BatmanTheAnimatedSeriesE40IfYoureSoSmartWhyArentYouRich I don't believe in fate!]]

[[folder:Fan Works]]
* ''[[http://www.fimfiction.net/story/119688/you-obey You Obey]]'' demonstrates that in an interrogation, not only is nothing a coincidence, but also that convenient coincidences are prime targets for scrutiny.
* The ''Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda'' fic ''[[FanFic/BoundDestiniesTrilogy Wisdom and Courage]]'' reveals that it was no accident that Link [[VideoGame/TheLegendOfZeldaMajorasMask showed up in Termina]] just in time to stop Majora from [[ColonyDrop dropping the moon]]; rather, Farore guided him there after Terminus, Termina's guardian deity, begged the Golden Goddesses for aid in containing the threat.
* In [[FanFic/EquestriaAHistoryRevealed Equestria: A History Revealed]], the narrator believes this to the point of using InsaneTrollLogic to justify her theories.
** In Chapter 10, she reveals that she was motivated to write this essay because [[spoiler: she found a Celestia-shaped Dorito chip and was convinced it was a sign from destiny]], invoking this trope.
* In the ''Film/StarTrek'' fanfic ''Fanfic/WrittenInTheStars'', both Spock Prime and Fem!Kirk Prime make it clear to Alt Reality Fem!Kirk that it's no coincidence all the original crew ended up on the same ship.
* ''Fanfic/PeaceForgedInFire'': Morgan notes that the timing of the Tal'Shiar false-flag attack against ch'R ''Maens'' is more than a little coincidental. Tovan responds:
-->"I stopped believing in coincidence after I became a cop, Morgan. My guess? Somebody sprang a leak."
* ''FanFic/RosarioVampireBrightestDarkness Act III'': Kuyou just happens to call the gang to warn them he's coming back to settle the score with Tsukune a few chapters after Hokuto himself enrolls in Yokai Academy; it's ultimately revealed that Hokuto himself personally orchestrated Kuyou's return in order to steal an ArtifactOfDoom from the school while everyone else was distracted with Kuyou.

[[folder:Film -- Animated]]
* In ''WesternAnimation/KungFuPanda'', Master Oogway tells Master Shifu, "There are no accidents," in relation to Po being chosen as the Dragon Warrior. Master Shifu later repeats this to Po.

[[folder:Film -- Live-Action]]
* ''Film/The51stState'' has this conversation on coincidence...
-->'''Felix [=DeSouza=]''': ''Yeah, well, Shit Happens!''
-->'''[[Creator/SamuelLJackson Elmo McElroy]]''': ''No, Shit don't just Happen. Shit takes time. Shit takes effort. Twenty million dollars worth of effort.''
** In other words, your car breaking down just in time to strand you in the middle of nowhere as a snowstorm starts is a coincidence. A twenty-million-dollar drug deal being busted up by dozens of skinheads with automatic weapons just before you close escrow? That's somebody with more cash than he knows what to do with wanting to make your life hell.
* ''Film/TheAirIBreathe'': "There are some people who believe in coincidences. I am not one of them."
* ''Film/AvengersAgeOfUltron:'' At the end of the movie, Thor points out that in the years since the Avengers formed, they've ran into three of the [[spoiler:Infinity Stones]]. His refusal to believe this is a coincidence is what spurs him to leave, and investigate further.
* In ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises'', Gordon tells Blake that, as a detective, "[he's] not allowed to believe in coincidences anymore".
* In ''Film/TheMatrix'', Morpheus believes in fate and prophecy, and thus does not believe in coincidence.
* Jim Williams airily drops the line in ''Film/MidnightInTheGardenOfGoodAndEvil'' after John Kelso spots a copy of his book, which wasn't exactly a bestseller, on Jim's bookshelf while doing a puff piece for a magazine on Jim's annual Christmas party. Actually a {{justified}} use: Jim then explains that liked the book and specifically requested Kelso for the article.
* In ''Film/TheMummyReturns'', Rick tries to shrug everything off as a coincidence and Ardeth tells him "There's a fine line between coincidence and fate."
* In ''Film/{{Signs}}'', Graham Hess phrases the statement as a means to [[HollywoodAtheist deny the existence of God]].
--> "See what you have to ask yourself is what kind of person are you? Are you the kind that sees signs, that sees miracles? Or do you believe that people just get lucky? Or, look at the question this way: Is it possible that there are no coincidences?"
* ''Franchise/StarWars'':
** In Obi-Wan Kenobi's experience, there is no such thing as luck, since TheForce pervades everything. He probably got it from his own master, who believed that meeting Anakin Skywalker was no coincidence.
** In the ExpandedUniverse, this is a Force-user's philosophy in general. If something really improbable happens, it's because [[SentientCosmicForce the Force wanted it to go that way]]. The more coincidences pile up, the more the Force is at work.
* ''Film/VForVendetta'': "I, like God, do not play with dice and I don't believe in coincidences."
** Later in that movie, V tells another character, "There are no coincidences, Delia. Only the illusion of coincidence."
** Chief Inspector Finch also says "When you're at this as long as I have, you stop believing in coincidence."

* In ''Literature/AncillaryJustice'', this is the view of the dominant religion in Radch space which holds that all things are the will of the god Amaat so every seeming coincidence is significant. Breq uses this belief to her advantage several times throughout the book.
* Robyn from ''Literature/TheTomorrowSeries'' believes that "coincidences are God's way of telling you to wake up".
* This is repeated several times in the ''Literature/YoungWizards'' series.
** When people regularly find themselves going on vacation, only to discover that locals need someone with ''just'' their expertise to solve the dire problem that recently cropped up, and when their bosses are {{Reality Warper}}s that make most gods look tame, this attitude is more than slightly justified. Granted, this is usually used to get wizards ''to'' the problem; once there, they're usually on their own.
* In Creator/DavidBrin's ''The Uplift War'', an alien is annoyed with the human word "accident," which is muddy in meaning, and the humans even say, "There are no accidents." At the end, contemplating the events that led to their defeat and thinking that if some of them hadn't happened, victory might have been possible -- but, the alien realizes, "There are no accidents."
* Creator/TonyHillerman's detective Joe Leaphorn explicitly gives "There are no coincidences" as his philosophy in solving mysteries, as stated in ''The First Eagle'' for instance.
* In ''Literature/{{Goldfinger}}'', Literature/JamesBond tries to convince Goldfinger that their third meeting is a coincidence. He fails.
--> "Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times, it's enemy action."
* In Creator/GrahamMcNeill's ''TabletopGame/{{Warhammer 40000}}'' ''Literature/{{Ultramarines}}'' novel ''Dead Sky Black Sun'', when Uriel meets Colonel Leonid, who can tell him what is in the [[EvilTowerOfOminousness Chaos fortress]], Uriel tells him that it was not chance that brought him to meet Leonid.
* In C. S. Goto's ''Literature/BloodRavens'' trilogy, "Coincidences are for the weak-minded and the ignorant."
* In Kate Seredy's ''The Singing Tree'', when arguing that they should take [[spoiler:Marton Nagy]] home despite [[spoiler:his lack of papers]], one argument is that it was obviously Destiny that brought them there to recognize him and jog his memory loose -- they had only stopped there because a cat had stowed away in the cart and started to have kittens -- and who are they to argue with destiny?
* In Creator/JohnCWright's ''[[Literature/TheGoldenOecumene The Golden Age]]'', Phaethon ponders whether a meeting is coincidence or arranged by the Earthmind, an AI with a trillion times the brain power of a human such as himself.
* In Creator/JasperFforde's ''[[Literature/ThursdayNext The Eyre Affair]]'', when Thursday meets the activists who want her to speak against the war, they declare it can't be a coincidence.
* The ''Literature/{{Xanth}}'' novels define "coincidence" as a word used by [[{{Muggles}} Mundanes]] to [[WeirdnessCensor explain away]] something magical happening.
* ''Literature/GoodOmens''. At first glance it seems that a bunch of random stuff (starting with the babies getting mixed up, and escalating from there) came together to interfere with the Divine Plan. It's not until it's over that the protagonists start to wonder if the Divine Plan they've been told about is the ''actual'' [[ThePlan Divine Plan]].
* In Creator/JohnHemry's ''Literature/TheLostFleet'', some characters declare it can't be chance that they found Black Jack Geary's survival pod.
* In Creator/MichaelFlynn's ''[[Literature/SpiralArm Up Jim River]]'', when she hears of a murder of a woman she spoke with, the harper thinks it can't be a coincidence. She tells Donovan, and he agrees.
* In the Literature/LiadenUniverse series by Sharon Lee and Steve Miller, fate often seems to be an active agent with a will of its own. Characters refer to it as "event" or "the Luck," and it is said to move in strange ways around those of Clan Korval and Line yos'Phelium in particular, making them the ultimate WeirdnessMagnet. Individuals who are GenreSavvy enough to recognize it (including those of Korval themselves) make allowances for it in their plans—[[spoiler:Bechimo's builders who warned him to steer clear of Clan yos'Phelium]] in ''Ghost Ship'', and [[spoiler:Zaneth Katrina who wishes nothing to do with Clan Korval at the present time because the Luck is too unsettled]] in ''Dragon Ship''. Those who don't believe in the Luck or the powers of the ''dramliza'' end up puzzled by the way Korval is always at the nexus of extraordinary happenstance and often assign human intentions to utter coincidence. (Or what ''would'' be utter coincidence if it weren't for the Luck causing it.)
** For example: what are the odds that a half-brainwashed Agent of Change disengaging from a mission would meet, become companions with, and eventually [[spoiler:lifemate]] a woman who happens to be [[spoiler:the granddaughter of a missing member of a long-lost clan with whom his is allied—a woman who grew up on the planet that his cousin is shortly going to civilize so Clan Korval can move to? And that this woman's own clan's world is about to be invaded by Yxtrang, bringing with them the very member of that race he had encountered ten years before]]? The ''entire series'' is one long chain of increasingly unlikely "coincidences". (It drives the Department of the Interior, and more than a few people who are ''in the know'' about Clan Korval's history with the Luck, right up the wall.)
* This is a major plot point in ''Literature/BridgeOfBirds'', with Master Li slowly realizing that all the unlikely events and reappearances of characters and side stories that keep happening to him and Number Ten Ox are the work of a god doing his best to clue them in on their FetchQuest being part of a much bigger quest without breaking the rule of gods not being allowed to intervene ''directly'' in mortals' affairs. The chapter where he explains all this to Ten Ox is even titled "There Are No Coincidences in the Great Way of Tao".
* This line is said repeatedly in ''Beautiful Creatures''.
* Just after Literature/HonorHarrington has made her grand escape from the prison planet Hades with over half a ''million'' escapees, apparently coming back from the dead to do so, Rob Pierre and Oscar St. Just discuss her apparent ability to have been in just the right spots to screw with Haven's war planning for a decade or more. Pierre admits that half his strategic analysts believe it's just coincidence. The other half think [[DealWithTheDevil she's in league with Satan]].
* In Creator/DorothyGilman's ''Literature/TheClairvoyantCountess'', Madame Karitska discusses the possibility with Mr. Faber-Jones, that his meeting with a criminal, enabling his capture, was no coincidence.
* Comes up several times in ''Literature/TheWheelOfTime'', in particular thanks to three incredibly powerful ''ta'veren'' traipsing around, distorting probability with their presence. Invoked memorably when Verin tried for days to leave a particular town but was repeatedly flummoxed by random delays, until finally she decided that she was supposed to be there and settled down to see who would show up. In broader terms, resident pragmatist Gareth Bryne sums it up:
--> '''Once is happenstance, twice coincidence, three times a conspiracy.'''
* In Creator/AndreNorton's ''Literature/{{Catseye|1961}}'', [[spoiler:Dragur]] observes that one coincidence is so beneficial as to almost make him believe in Fate.
* In Bryan Miranda's ''Literature/TheJourneyToAtlantis'', the main characters' ship sinks during a violent thunderstorm, which strands them on the island. Obviously, [[spoiler: it wasn't just a normal storm, but was created by Loki to get the kids on the island so he could have his twisted fun with them]].
* In the Japanese-occupied San Francisco of Creator/PhilipKDick's ''Literature/TheManInTheHighCastle'', there are no coincidences. There is only the Tao, and its messenger the I-Ching.
* ''Literature/FlightToTheLonesomePlace'': Anna Maria Rosalita believed this, especially with Ronnie making his way to the ship on which she was on.
* This is a central belief of the two cults featured in ''Literature/TheTenetsOfFutilism.'' The titular cult believes there are two gods, one representing fortune and the other misfortune, who fight for control of humanity's fate. The gods are known as Crescis and Decrescis, respectively. Everything that happens is ultimately a result of one of their wills. Nothing is truly random. Sasha, the novel's protagonist, doesn't initially buy the cult's teachings. That changes after a few very unlikely coincidences occur. So unlikely, in fact, they leave her believing they're not coincidences at all. Sasha ends starting a cult of her own known as the Disciples of Waxing (or Waxers). Their belief system is much the same as the Futilists, only with a few changes Sasha makes to fit her [[TheIdealist ideals.]] Waxers believe that Crescis overcame his twin brother on December 21st 2012 when he prevented the Mayan apocalypse from occurring.
* Used and justified in the first ''Pandora Jones'' book. One of Pandora's more vivid apocalypse memories is of a little girl in a white dress, playing with a doll, who coughed up so much blood that her dress turned red. [[spoiler: When she reads Cara's diary, she finds that Cara remembered the exact same thing, and when she later talks to Sanjit, she finds that he remembers the same thing. Given that the three of them came from completely different places, Pan concludes that their remembering the exact same scenario is possible, but just too unlikely to be believable, and it's part of the evidence that leads Pan to conclude that the memories are fake, as is the School.]]
* A theme in ''Literature/ShadowSong'', in which Avrum Feldman in particular believes very strongly in destiny. In particular, he claims it's no coincidence that he should meet and form an IntergenerationalFriendship with the protagonist, Bobo Murphy, despite the meeting occurring in an unlikely place and the 51 years between their ages.
* In ''[[Literature/EddieLaCrosse Burn Me Deadly]]'', the protagonist acts on the assumption that this is the case, but actually, it's specifically averted — ''most'' things are connected, but not everything. Eddie assumes that the [[spoiler:murder of Mother Bennings]] was orchestrated by the same people whose [[spoiler:attack Mother Bennings healed him from]], and not the marginally-connected guy who Gary Bunson is planning to execute. In fact, it really is the open-and-shut case Gary thinks it is, and the killer's choice of victim had nothing to do with a connection to Eddie.
* ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'' [[ThePaladin Knight of the Cross Michael Carpenter]] holds this belief when it comes to the Swords of the Cross. These three holy blades, which contain a Nail from the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, have a Purpose and nearly any action that involves them, Michael believes, is part of His plan, though freewill still applies. When a Custodian of the Swords picks a Knight for a mission, he trusts that choice, even if it seems random or accidental.
** That said, one of the powers of a Knight of the Cross is that God will arrange for a ContrivedCoincidence to happen whenever the Knights need help with side issues so they can focus on their work. One example of this being Father Forthill having his car break down near Michael's place right when Michael needs someone to watch his kids so that he can go out Knighting - and Forthill's comment on the whole matter implies that this is not the first time something like this has happened.
* The basis of Aaron's worldview in ''Literature/{{Unsong}}'' to the point that his signature quote is "This is not a coincidence because nothing is ever a coincidence." This is pretty reasonable, considering that he practices magic based on the reverse engineering the nature of God from so called coincidences (and the [[WorldOfPun omnipresent puns]]) and the settings main other form of magic is based on NarrativeCausality.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* The Romulans of ''Franchise/StarTrek'', as a species, do not believe in luck. If something goes wrong, it is because someone either intentionally made things go wrong, or else someone messed up and unintentionally made things go wrong.
** Semi-averted by Garak in a conversation with Bashir on ''Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine.''
-->'''Bashir''': "Don't tell me you don't believe in coincidences."\\
'''Garak''': "I believe in coincidences. Coincidences happen every day. But I don't '''trust''' coincidences."
** In the ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' episode "The Drumhead," a Klingon spy was exposed aboard the ''Enterprise'' at about the same time that a component of the warp core exploded, crippling the ship. The two were naturally assumed to be connected, making the spy a saboteur as well. Ultimately subverted, however, when the explosion was determined to have been an accident.
* On ''Series/{{CSI}}'' Gil Grissom has repeatedly said in a handful of episodes that he does not believe in coincidences. He even quoted ''Literature/{{Goldfinger}}'' at one point:
---> "Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy's action."
** However, in the episode "Chaos Theory", Grissom is forced, at the end of the episode's investigation, to accept that the death and disappearance of college student Paige Rycoff was the result of a series of unfortunate random events that, when taken in sequence, were only connected because, together, they directly led to the girl dying in a tragic accident that merely ''appeared'' at first blush, to be murder.
*** At the end of the aforementioned episode, Gil is forced to look into the mirror when the parents of Paige refuse to believe the explanation even with all the evidence, the one thing that Gil absolutely believes in an investigation, due to grief.
* Doctor Tony Hill, from ''Series/WireInTheBlood'', has a psychological justification for not believing in coincidences:
---> "Jung's theory of synchronicity says there are links between events beyond cause and effect. Patterns the conscious mind can't perceive. [pause] There is no such thing as coincidence or accident."
* Michael Garibaldi, from ''[[Series/BabylonFive Babylon 5]]'' prefers to make his own luck rather than just relying on chance.
* Gibbs, from ''Series/{{NCIS}}''. Rule #39, in fact.
--> '''Anthony [=DiNozzo=]''': "In the immortal words of Leroy Jethro Gibbs [puts on a deep voice] 'I don't believe in coincidences'."\\
'''[=Gibbs=]''': "You know how I feel about coincidences, Abs."\\
'''[=Abby=]''': "Equatorial pygmies know how you feel about coincidences, Gibbs."
** However, after Gibbs rules a group of chop-shop employees out of the investigation of a dead body found in the trunk of a car they stole:
---> '''Anthony [=DiNozzo=]''': "I thought you didn't believe in coincidences, Boss."\\
'''[=Gibbs=]''': "I don't. But I ''do'' believe in bad luck.''
* Laverne in ''Series/{{Scrubs}}''. "''Everything'' happens for a reason."
** Then JD's narration comments on how this is subverted at the end of the same episode when [[spoiler: Laverne is left in a coma by a random car accident]]
*** Then played straight in the next episode, [[spoiler: Laverne holds on to life just long enough for her best friend Carla to get past denial of the situation and say goodbye]]
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'':
-->"Giles, there are two things that I don't believe in: coincidence and leprechauns."
** By the end of the series, [[FantasyKitchenSink just about the only mythical creature we haven't seen is a leprechaun]]. This is even lampshaded on ''Series/{{Angel}}'' when Cordelia sarcastically asks a group of demon if she's going to see a leprechaun next and the demons point out that no-one believes in leprechauns.
* ''Series/{{Lost}}'''s central theme was whether the crazy stuff happening to the main characters has any sort of meaning or purpose, or if they're all just deluding themselves or being conned into thinking that because of their psychological issues.
* ''Series/{{Farscape}}'' references UsefulNotes/AlbertEinstein just to hammer in, "[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srHJBueSx40 Yeah, Scorpius has your number, Crichton]], ''and he will never stop screwing with you!''"
-->'''Harvey''': ''Scorpius... Iz... [[AGodAmI Like Gohd]]! He doez not play dize vit ze univerze!''
** Harvey, the invisible friend in Crichton's head is '''dressed like Einstein. Complete with EinsteinHair.''' Farscape's that kind of show.
* ''Series/DoctorWho''
** The First Doctor was more likely to call things that were obviously enemy action coincidence and to call a coincidence fate.
** Later Doctors have a tendency to say this, usually while figuring out the plot. By now he's had nine hundred years of experience in [[GenreSavvy how these things work]].
** One of Eleven's rules is "never ignore a coincidence. Unless you're in a hurry, then always ignore a coincidence".
** [[spoiler:The TARDIS, while in a human body]] basically tells the Doctor there is no coincidence that the Doctor arrives just before some trouble happens because [[spoiler:the TARDIS is taking him to where he is needed]].
* In the ''Series/{{Community}}'' episode "[[Recap/CommunityS2E09ConspiracyTheoriesAndInteriorDesign Conspiracy Theories and Interior Design]]" a GambitPileup caused by everyone involved explains the bizarre occurrences in this episode.
* One episode of ''ElChapulinColorado'' featured the hero at an area where it's usual to have falling rocks from space. Not believing it, Chapulin [[SarcasmMode sarcastically]] announced the arrival of one that made stops in Jupiter and Saturn. Then a rock falls and hits someone nearby. Chapulin dismissed it as a coincidence that could happen anywhere on the world and [[TemptingFate challenged another one to appear]]. It did, hitting the same someone. "Two coincidences", the hero said and then challenged again. A third rock fell and Chapulin decided to hide just in case a "fourth coincidence" appeared. Several rocks fell later, and the hero weakly dismissed them as coincidences.
* ''Series/OnceUponATime'': Other characters have this, too, but Baelfire explicitly states that it's one of the few things that he and his father, Rumplestiltskin, agree on.
* ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'': As Bobby said in "The Magnificent Seven": "I believe in a lot of things. Coincidences ain't one of them."
* ''Series/{{Dexter}}'' - in a season seven flashback to much earlier, the title character quotes a saying that Doakes found in another killer's diary. "[[SirSwearsALot Fuck coincidences]], I don't believe in 'em."
* ''Series/{{Sherlock}}''
** Inverted in the "[[Recap/SherlockS02E02TheHoundsOfBaskerville The Hounds of Baskerville]]" episode when a joke about a little girl's escaped rabbit [[ChekhovsGun turns out]] to be part of the A-plot. "People say there's no such thing as coincidence. What dull lives they must lead."
** Played straight in a third season episode "[[Recap/SherlockS03E02TheSignOfThree The Sign of Three]]"
-->'''Mycroft''': "Oh Sherlock, what do we say about coincidences?"
-->'''Sherlock''': "The universe is rarely so lazy."
* ''Series/TheFlash2014'': On his deathbed, Eddie Thawne came to believe this was the case in regards to his unexpected presence in the timeline. It just so happened that the timeline Eobard Thawne altered by murdering Nora Allen was one where Eddie became a member of Team Flash, as Barry Allen's friend, Iris West's boyfriend/fiancee, and Joe West's partner, thus causing him to have a vested interest in stopping Eobard. He just so happens to be in the right place, at the ''right time'', to do it by committing a HeroicSuicide, causing a GrandfatherParadox. Through this, it's heavily implied that [[PowersThatBe the Speed Force]] allowed Eobard to run amok because it knew Eddie would one day kill himself to erase the latter from existence.

* Mr. Whittaker from ''Radio/AdventuresInOdyssey'' believes this. (Although in a very early episode he comments on something being a coincidence.)

* In ''VideoGame/LegacyOfKain: Soul Reaver II'', Vorador refuses to believe that Raziel's sudden appearance and the imminent destruction of the Pillars is a coincidence.
* ''VideoGame/MetalGearSolid''
---> '''Solid Snake''': Well, I don't believe in coincidences.
* ''VideoGame/SidMeiersAlphaCentauri'' plays with this trope by suggesting there ''are'' coincidences, [[MindScrew but these coincidences might have their own perverse reasons for happening]]:
-->Einstein would turn in his grave. Not only does God play dice, the dice are loaded.
-->Chairman Sheng-ji Yang, ''Looking God in the Eye''
* In ''VideoGame/RecordOfAgarestWar'', Duran thinks that it's just a coincidence that they found a hot spring on their camping site, but Winfield thinks the other way.
-->'''[[LovableSexManiac Winfield]]''': Ha! Coincidence, you say? Divine providence, say I! The gods love us!
* A repeated theme in ''Franchise/TheElderScrolls'', especially ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIIMorrowind Morrowind]]'' and ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIVOblivion Oblivion]]'', but also present in the resolution to ''[[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsIIDaggerfall Daggerfall]]''. The Septim dynasty, in particular, tends to find this out the hard way; Uriel Septim drops the phrase just seconds before taking a dagger to the back, while Martin Septim slowly goes from feeling in control of his destiny to believing things are pre-planned.
* ''VideoGame/StarWarsRepublicCommando'': "One's an anomaly, two's a trend. Rule 89, Boss."
* In the bonus chapter of ''VideoGame/TheWorldEndsWithYou'', one NPC talks about this. [[GambitPileup Given the way the story goes]], he is probably right.
* ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic II'': While not a complete rejection of coincidences, Kreia believed that true coincidences were rare and that events usually chalked up to coincidence actually happened because of the Force.
** Bastila also lampshades it in the first game, saying such things are so commonplace to those who are active Force Users that they simply "get used to" it.
* ''VideoGame/{{Persona 2}}: Innocent Sin'' is one long journey in discovering that no, there are ''no'' coincidences. Your entire party comes together [[spoiler:as playing pieces in a game between two gods, chosen because you were conveniently there - almost any group of childhood friends would have suited]]. ''Everything'' is part of some horrible grand scheme, especially the bits that look pulled out of nowhere.
* ''Videogame/DragonAgeInquisition'': The sheer number of coincidences responsible for the Inquisitor's survival and rise to power convinces one skeptic that the Inquisitor is TheChosenOne.

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* During ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorney'', you end up having to cross-examine a [[MakeTheDogTestify par]][[PollyWantsAMicrophone rot]], in a desperate attempt to link the owner to the current case. One press gets you nowhere, as it's a small clue that has no meaning, with the prosecutor and the judge calling it a coincidence. A second press gets a different answer, which is also a small clue which has no meaning on it's own. The prosecutor calls it a coincidence, but the Judge isn't so sure...
-->'''Judge:''' Two coincidences at the same time seems like a connection to me.

* ''Webcomic/{{Pibgorn}}'':
--> [[http://www.gocomics.com/pibgorn/2004/02/28/ "I have every confidence in magic, but I don't for a second believe in coincidence."]]
* ''Webcomic/SquidRow'': [[http://squidrowcomics.com/?p=41 Randie doesn't believe in luck]].
* In ''Webcomic/QuentynQuinnSpaceRanger'', [[http://www.rhjunior.com/QQSR/00004.html Quinn tells Omnibus they are about to be attacked: all their systems went offline at once when they reached the gravity well -- obviously not a simple malfunction.]]
* In ''Webcomic/CharCole'', professor Cedar [[http://charcole.kyrio.net/?comic=charcole222-falling-in-pieces explains]] to "Charlie" how he discovered he's Cole. It involves a lot of coincidences, and a lack of belief therein.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* The reason [[UsefulNotes/AlbertEinstein Einstein]] did not like quantum mechanics relating to chance was because of this. "Quantum mechanics is certainly imposing, but an inner voice tells me that it is not yet the real thing. The theory says a lot, but does not really bring us any closer to the secret of the 'old one'. '''I, at any rate, am convinced that He does not throw dice'''." [[note]] Technically, he didn't believe in randomness beyond the laws of physics and the boundary conditions of the universe. Those two things can still cause some pretty coincidental stuff to happen, just like pseudo-random number generators can cause coincidences in computer games. [[/note]]
** Stephen Hawking's take on the matter is "Not only does He play dice, He sometimes throws them where they cannot be seen!"
** The secular version of Einstein's statement is that the Schroedinger Equation (or the equations in general of quantum mechanics) is deterministic. The problem of quantum measurement is a serious MindScrew.[[note]]For example, a particle with Sx=1/2 is in a superposition of Sz=1/2 and Sz=-1/2. A magnetic field may send Sz=1/2 particles up and Sz=-1/2 particles down. The universe will be in a superposition of states where said particle has gone up and down. Any device measuring whether it has gone up or down will be in a superposition of states indicating "up" and "down". Any human recording the data will be in a superposition of states where he sees and records "up" and "down". In the ultimate extreme, if a particle going up meant the earth blowing while the earth is saved if the particle goes down, said particle puts the universe in a superposition of states were the earth is and is not blown up.[[/note]]
* The Yoruba tribe in Africa believe there is only one reason people die: witchcraft. They refuse to accept such things as "natural causes" or "horrible accident" as causes of death.
* A [[TheGreatPoliticsMessUp Soviet-era]] phrase, "This was no accident, comrade," referred to both the Marxist ideological notion that powerful and inexorable historical forces drive human progress, and that more mundane human agents (i.e., [[SecretPolice the KGB]] or other parts of the totalitarian state) were secretly behind events that seemed to occur by happenstance. It was also said that every major accident has a first, second and last name.
* Magazine/ForteanTimes talks about this sort of thing a lot but makes no judgement on whether it's down to synchronicity, serendipity, conspiracy theory, or just plain ordinary random coincidence.
* A proper understanding of probability and statistics leads to the conclusion that this trope is badly averted in RealLife. On the other hand, such an understanding may also lead one in a particular situation to realize that certain coincidences are extremely unlikely, and the apparent coincidence is a clue rather than a coincidence.
* Creator/RobertAntonWilson once wrote about the researcher's dilemma; trying to locate a particular half-remembered example from a very big library of books, so as to be able to refresh his memory and quote it in an article. He was moved to close his eyes and select a book from random off a shelf so as to open it at random, just on the MillionToOneChance. He was interested first by the fact he'd selected a book by his namesake, Creator/ColinWilson, which covered the subject field he was researching. Opening it at random, the first thing he read was (Colin) Wilson's account of how another author, faced with the problem of locating the exact information he wanted quickly, had opened a random book to a random page and found what he wanted, first time out. (Robert Anton) Wilson says he never found the information he was looking for. But he was so struck by this double, and recursive, coincidence that he chose to write about this instead.
* An old soldier's maxim: Once is an accident, twice is coincidence. But three times is enemy action.