If you want to climb over a building but cannot fly, you could try several options. If you are a good climber, or a bug, you could Wall Crawl
up it. If you are agile enough, you could Wall Jump
from wall to wall to slowly but eventually get to the top.
But in this trope, they just run up it! They either have the superhuman strength or speed or ability to simply run up a smooth, flat, vertical surface at high speeds, even if logically they shouldn't be able to.
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Anime & Manga
- The Flash can run fast enough to run up vertical surfaces.
- Spider-Man can do short bursts of wall-running while webswinging.
- In the opening sequence in The Matrix, Trinity evades a cop as he's shooting at her by running up and then along a wall of the room they're in before taking the fight to him. Since this happens inside the Matrix, it's justified as Trinity being a redpill.
Live Action TV
- As in the comics, the 2014 version of The Flash has Barry do that in "Plastique" to rescue a man falling from a maintenance gondola. Bonus points for asking Cisco how fast he needs to run for this to work. Being in a bar, Cisco does his calculations on a napkin (while being drunk) with Barry even providing the height in meters for easier calculations. However, Caitlin just tells him to move very fast before Cisco can finish his calculations (despite the fact that this is Cisco's area of expertise) and maintain the speed on the way down to avoid the "splat". It works, and Barry even outruns the falling gondola on the way down.