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Welcome to the Caribbean, Mon!
aka: Welcome To The Caribbean Luv
Work all night and I drink da rum
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Stack banana 'till de mornin' come
Daylight come and me wan' go home
Harry Belafonte, "The Banana Boat Song". You may recognize it from a certain movie that didn't take place in the Caribbean...

A chain of tropical paradises mostly between Florida and South America. The Caribbean is known for cruises, beaches, resorts, and the occasional pirate infestation. Beware of The Bermuda Triangle, while you're at it, too. Includes Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Virgin Islands, Bermuda, the Cayman Islands and others.

Calypso or rhumba music is constantly being played, there's free fruit everywhere, everyone is constantly drunk and/or high, and may have a pet parrot. Nobody does any work, they just sit on the beach sipping fruity little drinks with umbrellas out of coconuts. At night, the careless or unlucky might see a voodoo ceremony.

Pirate attacks have to be dealt with, even in modern times. Except now they use machine guns instead of cutlasses and are less romanticized.

This trope excludes the Latin Caribbean islands such as Cuba and Puerto Rico, and includes the northern South American countries of Guyana and Suriname. Jamaica is a specialized case, mostly due to a perceived abundance of Reggae and Rastafari folks with a penchant for the "Wisdom Weed". The Bahamas is often mistaken for Jamaica much to the chagrin of BOTH countries' citizens. This is despite, however, a minority of Rastafarians in Jamaica.

If you find white people here in contemporary times they're likely to be sitting on a yacht, playing croquet or cricket, or lounging around in white suits and reading a newspaper in the lobby of a hotel that's seen better days. This is often used as the final scene of a movie, illustrating that a Karma Houdini character made a successful Run for the Border.

Also known as The Spanish Main. Because it used to be full of Spaniards and their loot.

Has nothing to do with Mon, mon.

Examples:

Advertising
  • The commercials for Malibu rum seem to invoke this trope, despite the fact that Malibu is located in California. The rum itself, however, was invented in Curacao.

Comic Books

Fanfic

Film
  • Pirates of the Caribbean, obviously.
  • The movie Captain Ron, at one point, has the protagonist's children partying in a festival on an unnamed Caribbean island while their parents are arrested for smuggling revolutionaries onto the island. Later, they run afoul of the "Pirates of the Caribbean", as Captain Ron calls them, and get their boat stolen at gunpoint. (This movie was made before the Disney movie trilogy, so viewers will awkwardly hear the children's dad saying Captain Ron "went to Disneyland too many times").
    • Pirates of the Caribbean existed before the movie trilogy, as a ride in Disneyland. Just to clarify.
    • The movie was filmed in Puerto Rico.
  • Captain Blood is set in the Caribbean; Jamaica and Tortuga are particularized.
  • Cool Runnings
  • James Bond
    • The fictional nation of San Monique from Live and Let Die.
    • Also Crab Key and neighboring islands in Dr. No. When James Bond asks Quarrel where he took Dr. Strangway, Quarrel points to the harbor, saying, "That there's the Caribbean. That's where I took him."
  • At the end of The Silence of the Lambs, Dr. Lecter has escaped to an unnamed island and saunters off into the crowd of locals as the credits roll.
  • Spoofed in the comedy Water (1985). The island of Cascara is poor as there are no beaches for tourists and it's too windy to play bridge.
  • Club Paradise, a Robin Williams vehicle, includes pretty much every Caribbean trope except the pirates.

Literature
  • Neil Gaiman's Anansi Boys, played straight. (Yes. Neil Gaiman played something straight.) Well, kind of. Apparently people in the Caribbean are mad about country music, and hand out limes to passersby. Although Fat Charlie was only given the lime because he expressed disbelief that limes grew there, so he was given one. Other than that no limes were handed about, except by Fat Charlie himself who became unusually attached to the lime, and proposed to Daisy with it. It Makes Sense in Context.

Live-Action TV
  • Harry Maybourne escapes to such a place in one epsiode of Stargate SG-1.
  • Part one of the Criminal Minds two-parter, "The Fisher King", takes place with Derek Morgan and Elle Greenaway vacationing in Jamaica, with scenes invoking this trope.

Music
  • The song "Kokomo" by the Beach Boys.
  • The Andrews Sisters' classic "Rum and Coca-Cola" is about American tourists in Trinidad.
    Since the Yankee come to Trinidad
    They got the young girls all goin' mad
    Young girls say they treat 'em nice
    Make Trinidad like paradise
    Drinkin' rum and Coca-Cola
    Go down Point Koomahnah
    Both mother and daughter
    Workin' for the Yankee dollar
  • Steel drum music is another bit of Trinidad & Tobago culture that is commonly used as a generic "island" music cue in popular culture. Notice that "Kokomo" uses steel drums and mentions a dozen tropical locales but not Trinidad or Tobago.
  • Parts of the album Waiting For Cousteau by Jean Michel Jarre which was recorded on the island of Trinidad include a big local steel drum band. "Calypso" even comes with a somehow Caribbean groove.
  • Great Big Sea sang "Penelope," about a Jamaican bazaar worker who moves to Chicago to become a domestic and to search for her lost uncle. She goes back, secure in the knowledge that the slow-paced life in the tropics is far better than the frantic concrete mess that is The Big City. Can be seen as an analogy for Newfoundlanders moving to big-city Canada and longing for home.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • The Goal Of The World Wrestling League is to increase global awareness of Caribbean Wrestling.
  • This was basically the video hyping RazorRamon's WWF debut, showing him strolling through an open air Cuban Market. repeated almost verbatim for Carlito's WWE debut video, just in Puerto Rico.

Radio
  • The original radio version of Bold Venture was set in pre-revolution Cuba (and made heavy use of calypso music). The television version (made in 1959) moved the action to Trinidad.

Toys

Theatre
  • Sky and Sarah's trip to Havana in Guys and Dolls (pre-Castro, of course).

Video Games

Web Comics

Web Original

Western Animation
  • TaleSpin spans the world, but the main locations of Cape Suzette and Louie's are definitely in a very Caribbean or South Pacific setting.
    • Probably the South Pacific, since the show is apparently based on Tales of the Gold Monkey.
    • And in one episode they visit Panda La.
  • The Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers episode "Battle of the Bulge" features three fruit-devouring, evil-doing Jamaican fruit bats complete with the matching accent.
  • In a Codename: Kids Next Door episode, the hamsters go on a vacation at Jamaica's KND sector. The operatives are very laid-back to the point of not knowing what an emergency is, and persistently offer mango smoothies to everyone. One of the operatives there is your stereotypical Jamaican who hilariously seems to be the only one who can stomach Lizzie's horrible cooking.
    "It's PIE time, mon! ...o.o That be some GOOD pie, mon!"


Tipis And Totem PolesCultural Blending    
SoCalizationHollywood AtlasBritain Is Only London

alternative title(s): Welcome To The Caribbean Luv; The Spanish Main
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