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Par-tay! Par-tay! Par-tay!
A mainstay of the classic teen comedy movie, but usually seen at least once in every Sitcom that has a teenaged character, this is the inevitable result of mixing one or more teenagers with a house devoid of parental figures. It almost always results in wall-to-wall teens, loud music, underage drinking, and property damage. (And, in R-rated movies, a lot of sex in the bedrooms and/or bathrooms.) Sometimes this is by design, and sometimes a small party for a couple of friends spirals completely out of control.
A popular variation of this is that the host only invited over two or three friends and the party just shows up out of nowhere. Someone they did invite brought one more person, and so did another. Then someone they never met shows up at the door. Fast forward ten minutes and a college football team shows up with a keg and there's somehow full disco lighting in the living room. The host will still get in trouble for this, and the show may still play it as an Aesop. Another variation is when two teens live in the same house, and one plans a party without consulting the other, who has to study for a test or do something else where peace and quiet is necessary. The second teen usually will not find out until they come home to see the party already underway.
The Wild Teen Party usually experiences at least one, and often more, of the following complications:
The parents call home in the middle of the party "to check on things". The teen hosts must then either quiet the crowd down for the duration of the call, or come up with a believable explanation for the noise in the background. Even if the teens succeed in pulling off a perfect deception, the parents may still become uneasy and cut short their time away from home.
Party crashers of various stripes. If it's not the varsity football team and their entourage descending on a party to which they weren't invited, it'll be punks or bikers running wild, trashing the place and carrying off cheerleaders.
A fistfight, which sometimes escalates into a full brawl. If there's a picture window, someone will almost certainly go through it. A rare family keepsake like an urn, or better yet, one containing Grandma's ashes, will be stolen, destroyed or used to mix cocktails.
A fire, flood or other disaster.
If the party is wild enough, the police will show up to shut it down — usually just minutes before the parents return.
If the party is even wilder than that, a film crew will come to tape it for a TV special.
A character gets incredibly drunk with bad results. Usually a character who doesn't normally drink, but is pressured into it/doesn't realize the drinks are spiked, to give the Aesopmore impact.
The most generic and repetitive "party/dance music" imaginable.
Literally everybody dancing and having a blast. As anybody who's actually been to a real teen (or, for that matter, adult) party will tell you, this part is not Truth in Television. Usually, there are at least as many people calmly sitting around and talking (or standing alone and feeling left out) as there are people dancing and acting crazy. Also, the house could not possibly have enough room for everyone to dance and act crazy at once. Oh, wait...
The party then ends in either of two different ways:
It peters out by the next morning, leaving the house (and sometimes the yard) looking like a war zone, populated by unconscious (and sometimes insufficiently-clothed) teens. The hosts must then somehow clean up and repair damages before the parentals return and have them all Grounded Forever. This may require finding one or more Replacement Goldfish, depending on the level of destruction.
The parents come home unexpectedly while the party is in full swing. After a Record Needle Scratch and a lot of yelling, speaking in Angrish and (in some cases) dropping of F-bombs, the crowd (mostly) disperses, leaving behind the unconscious, the belligerent, and the teen hosts, who then get reamed out by their parents and Grounded Forever.
However it runs, with whatever complications and ending, the Wild Teen Party usually ends in An Aesop about responsibility, maturity, and — if the hosts were caught — telling the truth to one's parents.
See also Youth Is Wasted on the Dumb (which may occur at this), A Party Also Known as an Orgy, and What Did I Do Last Night? Take note that it doesn't necessarily have to deal with teenagers, but they are the most common occurrences of the trope. The subject of a Walk On The Wild Side Episode will sometimes throw one of these.
Truth in Television, of course (except for the last complication of literally everyone dancing and acting crazy) — as any news reporter who wants to take a pop at Facebook will tell you. Moreover, "teen partying" is now listed as a reason for certain movies getting the ratings they have.
I bet I can list all the Examples RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW!:
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Advertising, Oh Yeah!
This Expedia commercial has two parents deciding to bring their teenage son along on a family vacation out of fear that this trope will be invoked if they leave him home alone.
A commercial for Sabra Hummus broadcast in late 2009 plays with this trope. A couple share some hummus on their patio while watching a sunset, and comment on how it's just like they're on a Mediterranean vacation. A moment later a bowling ball crashes through the french doors behind them, and they discover a Wild Teen Party has broken out because their son thought they were "on a Mediterranean vacation".
In a Canadian tire commercial, a teenager, cleaning up the mess after one of these, says, "It was a get-together!" The scene cuts to exterior shot of the house. Loud music, strobe lights playing on windows, couch sitting on lawn, dog barking in the background, kids yelling and laughing, sound of glass shattering, etc.
An implied instance of the trope occurred in the commercial for the first Mario Party game: Some cops stop by a house due to reports of disruptive behavior in the neighborhood. They then ask for Mario, who then reveals himself. It then cuts after showing some gameplay footage to the cops escorting Mario to their squadcar by the arms, with his legs flailing and his protesting "But it'sa me, Mario!" before the cops sarcastically dismiss his protests with, "Yeah, tell it to the judge," strongly implying that he was going to end up arrested for the disruptive party.
There's a feline equivalent in this ad for Tidy Cats cat litter.
Woo-hoo, Anime and Manga!
In Infinite Ryvius, the crew decides to throw a party to relieve tension after a battle. It features a beauty contest and a competition to program the Humongous Mecha to dance. It ends rather poorly, though, being interrupted by a news report declaring the Ryvius to be a terrorist vessel. Also, two people get murdered while everyone's distracted.
In the Tom Strong comic,Tesla Strong and Solomon the Gorilla try explaining to Tesla's parents that the devastated house (including a small jet aircraft in the living room) was actually the result of a super-villain turning the entire city upside-down. They don't buy it, so Tesla grudgingly admits to throwing a party.
Parodied in an issue of Ultimate Spider-Man, in which Gwen persuades a moping Peter (who has recently broken up with Mary Jane) to go to a party under the pretext that it'll turn into one of these and be fun. They end up sitting in a corner, bored and miserable, whilst everyone around them has a really good time. Then the party really does turn wild, but that's more because a teen mutant starts blowing up cars with his mind and the cops get called than any of the standard reasons.
A mid-70s issue of Playboy had a The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers flashback story of a 1959 New Years party thrown at Phineas' parents' house, over his objections. Mom and Pop get home to find the place destroyed and their new car totalled.
Cherry Comics: The "Beach Party" story, during which all the goldfish get eaten, someone takes a chainsaw to a wall, and the beach house catches fire.
... Chug, Chug, Film!
Clueless has one of these near the beginning of the movie
The film Weird Science climaxes in what is perhaps the ultimate wild party, where pianos are catapulted up chimneys and the entire cast of Mad Max (save for Mel Gibson) crashes the event.
Brick subverts the wild teen party in that there is a party, there are teens, and there is underage smoking and drinking, but it's a classy cocktail party, complete with live Jazz performance, in keeping with the 1940s noir theme.
Though not involving teens, the next most ultimate wild teen party would be the toga party from Animal House.
The movie Risky Business had a Wild Teen Party that was also the front for a (temporary) brothel. Joel gets away with it except for his mother scolding him over a tiny crack in her crystal egg. Furthermore, during the party a Princeton admissions officer drops by to interview Joel, and the prostitutes show him such a good time that he readily accepts Joel's application.
Sixteen Candles, like nearly every other "brat pack" movie, has one of these.
Almost the entire film of Can't Hardly Wait was set at a party, with only brief scenes set elsewhere.
Sky High features just such a party, with the twist that it's super powered teens trashing the place. In addition, when he is busted, the main character actually accepts punishment for it.
Superbad: The climax of the film is set at one. Interestingly, the parents don't find out in either example. The whole plot revolves around three friends who are trying to get alcohol to the party. The plan (at least for one of the friends) is nicely thwarted when it's revealed that the host of the party doesn't drink.
The movie Mean Girls contains both a "skanky" Halloween party, complete with skimpy costumes, and an unintentional large party held in Cady's house, where one of Cady's parents' tribal fertility urns ends up in a cabinet. However, the parents never find out about the party.
10 Things I Hate About You has Bogey Lowenstein's wine and cheese party crashed by the entire school. The house is wrecked, and the cops break it up. Also includes the famous picture window exit. And Julia Stiles table dancing to Notorious B.I.G.
Preston's Mother:[Preston's parents are just heading out for the weekend] Now Preston, I left some money on the kitchen counter. Oh and the emergency numbers are by the phone. Preston's Father: And remember son, *no parties*. Keg Guy:[Two guys walk by carring a beer keg] Keg commin' through! Hey Preston. Preston: Whats up, man? Preston's Father: We're really trusting you here, Preston. Roadie:[Behind them two more guys roll in a huge set of speakers] Where to you want these speakers set up, Preston? Preston: Yeah, just move all the shit in the dining room. [to his parents] Preston: Well, you guys really should hit the road, huh? Because I'm about to take your antique Ferrari to the inner-city to buy some hookers. Preston's Mother: Well, alright, sweetie. We'll call you later to check in. Preston: Oh, mom. By that point I'll be so high I won't even know where the phone is. Preston's Mother: Haha! Thats my boy.
Used in the 2005 remake of Yours Mine And Ours, as part of the kids' plot to break their parents up.
The fire department is called on the wild teen party in ATL.
Initially subverted in Dazed and Confused, when Kevin Pickford's plans are upset by the keg delivery guy showing up prematurely. Kevin's attempts at explaining it away does not convince his parents, who decide not to go on their vacation after all. At the end of the movie, however, this is played straight: there is a Wild Teen Party; but it happens out in the woods, away from houses and parents.
Perfect example in 21 Jump Street, complete with mom and dad coming home and everybody running out into the street.
A rare non-American example can be seen in Neuilly sa mere. Young Arab Sami has to live with his aunt, her French husband, and his French children, in Neuilly (President Sarkozy's place of birth). Near the end, Sami's cousin Charles organizes a party where there is a argument, trouble-makers arrive (and break everything), and then the parents return earlier than expected.
The trope is actually subverted in Easy A. Melanie Bostic's party appears like a classic example, except narration by Olive reveals that they are a regular event thrown with the complete knowledge and support of Melanie's parents. All sex that is referred to involves the protagonist, Olive, and both instances are actually complete shams (In eighth grade Olive and Todd lied about kissing during "Seven Minutes in Heaven" and Olive and Brandon pretend to have sex in the movie-present). Beer is mentioned, but never seen, as all the party goers have generic plastic cups that could, theoretically, hold gatorade or soda. In the end, nothing illegal, amoral or unexpected is shown to have actually happened, despite what people talk about or think happened.
Teen Wolf: Scott Howard's first wolfing out happens at a wild party complete with jello shots and whipped cream shenanigans. It's also his wolf-side that becomes responsible for him getting the keg for the party.
The beach party, I mean orgy, at the end of Psycho Beach Party, a yearly event that Chicklet sneaks out to, even though there's a murderer around.
The film adaptation of Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Roderick Rules depicts Roderick's party on-screen, instead of leaving it to the reader and Greg's imagination. The family film is forced to water the teen party down to slightly loud music and a guy who eats whipped cream from the can. They do make the impressive mess as they did in the book.
The neglected 1980 film Foxes (the directorial debut of Adrian Lyne, who went on to do Flashdance, 9 1/2 Weeks and Fatal Attraction) has one. Madge, who is dating an older man played by Randy Quaid, invites her friends over for a small party in his apartment on a weekend when he's out of town. Eventually, more and more people hear about it and show up, a fight breaks out, and the apartment is completely trashed.
Frostbite has the Lovable Jock John hold a party while his parents are out of town. At first it's pleasent enough, everbody seems to have a good time and the party is rather civilised. Then John turns into a vampire and the party becomes a vampireparty and they wreck everything.
Double subverted in Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle. The meeting of Cindy Kim and her East Asian Club is initially presented as a boring geekfest by a bunch of straight-laced nerds, but the actual party is soon revealed to be an unrestrained frenzy of drugs and sex.
Kumar: Dude, I'm thinking you really screwed up by not coming to this party. Harold:I screwed up?!
Literature, Ain't No Party Like a Gatsby Party
Literary example: in the book Girlfriend in a Coma by Douglas Coupland, the main characters attend a "housewrecker" party.
The Kit Pearson novel Looking At The Moon has all the adults leaving the cottage to go to a wedding and leaving the older teenagers in charge. Bearing in mind that this is a children's novel set during WWII, no sex and no drinking are shown, though almost everybody over the age of sixteen seems to smoke. Unusually for this trope, everything goes according to plan and no one's caught, though the adults on their return do remark that the island is suspiciously clean and garbage-free.
In one of his books Robert Fulghum tells the story of the kid who had a party when his parents were out of town, only to have somebody puke into the multigenerational family Bible. He had no recourse but to bury the thing in the backyard.
In Diary of a Wimpy Kid #2: Rodrick Rules the main character Gregory's older brother Rodrick throws one of these when their parents leave. However, Gregory is locked in the basement. When he wakes up and comes out the next morning, the house is in disarray. They end up even having to replace the bathroom door because someone drunkenly drew on it in permanent marker. Rodrick is found out a couple weeks later because someone accidentally took a picture with the family's camera.
Mansfield Park: The young-adult Bertram siblings throw the Regency England equivalency of this by putting on a scandalous play with their friends (which involves extensive construction to the house, including their father's bedroom) while their father's away on a business trip. Edmund warning Tom that the changes to the house and expenses are going to get them in trouble, everyone's panic when Sir Thomas returns home completely unexpectedly, and the subsequent terror as he walks into the billiard room still unaware of the chaos he's about to see uncannily parallel the reactions of modern teenagers caught throwing a Wild Teen Party.
Samantha and Juliet's deaths are both accidentally caused by Kent's Wild Teen Party in Before I Fall.
The Basic Eight: The narrator of Daniel Handler's first novel for grown-ups commits Murder By Croquet Mallet at a booze-fueled party on Halloween.
Before the events of Speak, Melinda Sordino called the cops at one of these, which caused half the school to hate her. She was raped.
Usually, Cynthia Dale's parties in The Ruby Red Trilogy are pretty boring. Then everybody decides to spike the punch. Her parents are actually there, but they're as drunk as everyone else.
Garrison Keillor describes one of these in a Lake Wobegon story in Leaving Home, given by Roger Hedlund's daughters. Roger, however, refuses to spoil the kids' fun by being a stereotypical angry father.
An archetypal example in Paul Zindel's The Pigman ends in tragedy.
The Scream opens with one. It ends with A massacre. Fifteen people die and a young woman is taken hostage.
Live-Action TV, This is the Big One!
That '70s Show had a few of these, particularly in the earlier seasons, including a kegger in the pool of an empty house and a "the parents are out of town" party at Donna's.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer: "Dead Man's Party", in which Buffy's out-of-control welcome back party gets crashed by zombies. It's played with; the party was originally, as Giles planned it, just going to be a quiet affair to welcome Buffy home, but her friends overrule him and turn it in to one of these; ostensibly because they think it's going to be more fun, but actually because there's all sorts of tensions surround why Buffy left which, now she's back, they're all avoiding dealing with — having the huge party is just an excuse to avoid her as much as possible while 'welcoming' her back. Needless to say, it gets ugly even before the zombies show up.
Degrassi has had several. The third season episode "Our House" has a crisis which completes Sean's Heel-Face Turn. The sixth season episode "Rock This Town," in a reversal, has the wild party at Emma's house, at Manny's urging — but when the wild party starts, Manny is the one trying to keep order while Emma gets drunk and lets things rot. And it ends with the king of disasters: One of the party-crashers murders a teen on impulse.
In one episode, the party got so out of control that a TV reporter announces that authorities have resorted to starting "back parties" to try to contain it.
"My Dinner With Anthrax": Only eight people attended (the band, Bud/Kelly/Marcy), supposedly only lasted one song, but utterly trashed the downstairs.
Smallville: Clark Kent accidentally hosted, and managed to clean the entire trashed house in a few seconds with his Super Speed — only to find his parents standing in the door applauding before explaining they called four times last night, and none of the four people who answered even knew a Clark Kent.
Joan of Arcadia has God Himself request the party (but veto alcohol). The parents never find out, but the cops came by to shut everything down, much to Joan's relief. This ended up saving the lives of the police officers by preventing them from being at a meth lab when it exploded.
Kevin in The Wonder Years throws a party that gets crashed (apparently by just about every partier in town and then some) and he can't even clean up a fraction of the mess by the time his parents return home. In a twist, he tries to fess up to them, but neither parent believes that straitlaced Kevin would do such a thing. Instead, they punish Kevin's older slacker brother Wayne whom they assume has bullied Kevin into taking the heat. And Wayne accepts it.
Skins is particularly known for these, to the point where "Skins party" has entered the slang lexicon. There is one in just about every episode - either that, or the characters will wake up to the aftermath of one (as happens at the beginning of Cassie's S1 episode).
Glue, penned by one of the writers on the above mentioned Skins, has two - a small affair at a grain silo and a massive teen rave in the woods.
The second episode of Freaks and Geeks features a Wild Teen Party. In an odd twist of the "getting increasingly drunk" requirement, the booze at the party has been secretly switched with "near beer" by the worried younger brother of the girl throwing the party — but everyone still acts drunk. As it's also a parody of the over-the-top Anvilicious "if you drink you'lldie!!!" messages that kids are generally bombarded with in these episodes, the episode also subverts most of the traditional Wild Teen Party elements — nothing gets broken, the parents don't come home (and, so far as we know, never even find out about it), the house doesn't look that blitzed afterwards (at least, no more than you'd expect after a fairly reasonable party), many of the kids are clearly either bored (Ken) or overly self-conscious (Harris), a wild fight looks like it's going to break out but cooler heads manage to prevail, nothing particularly bad happens to the 'drunk' kids and the cops are only called because the hostess secretly wants the party to end but doesn't want to look like a party pooper in front of her friends, so one of her brother's friends agrees to do it for her. All up, it might be more accurate to describe this example more of a Moderately Engaging Teen Party rather than a Wild one.
The Malcolm in the Middle episode "Reese's Party" has Reese mentioning this trope, and giving a foolproof plan to avoid the usual outcome of such parties: host the party on a Friday night, not Saturday, thus giving himself 1 day extra time to get rid of all the mess the party will cause. Unfortunately, the party is crashed by a bunch of guys who turn the garage into a meth lab.
Subverted on Home Alone 4, where Francis tells his three hoodlum friends not to have a party at his house. They keep their promise, but still trash the house because the trio is so violent and destructive that they have the energy to trash the house in the same manner as a Wild Teen Party.
On The O.C., Ryan and Seth are subjected to Haley Nichol's New Year's Eve party, complete with skinnydipping and BYOB.
The Cohen house is also overrun with male strippers (also Haley's fault) at Julie Cooper's bachelorette party. This time there's a catfight!
Then there was the girl who OD'd on Ecstacy at Marissa's house. All I can remember about that party is there was a really weak remix of "Daft Punk is Playing at my House" (itself a song about a Wild Teen Party).
That girl became a recurring character that season, who only existed to be a Wild Teen.
And there seemed to be a permanent Wild Teen Party going on in Holly's beach house during season 1.
In the Drake & Josh Episode "Drake and Josh Inn", Drake and Josh turn their house into an inn while their parents are away during spring break. It eventually spirals into a wild party that gets onto MTV. Their parents decide to come home early, but the partiers are scared off before they arrive. However, minutes later the parents get in trouble with the police for hosting a TV event without a license.
In Family Ties, Alex's and Mallory's party attracts gate crashers that include a kangaroo mascot kidnapped from a rival high school. The next morning, Steven explains to his kids just why he's so angry with them:
Parents are conditioned to expect a few minor mishaps when they go on vacation: a chipped dish, some spilled milk on the rug — (long pause) There was a kangaroo in my living room.
It should be noted that this went a bit beyond an unsupervised party: Mallory had crashed their parents' car so to pay for the repairs they turned the house into a bed and breakfast. Though they managed to make their money back almost immediately, Alex didn't want to stop...
Steven: Oh can you? Can you explain the valet parking in the drive way?... The flashing "vacancy" sign in front of the house? The billboardon Route 41?
One episode of Hardcastle and McCormick does essentially this, even though the characters aren't teenagers; while Judge Hardcastle is out of town, his live-in parolee/sidekick Mark McCormick hosts a poker game that gets severely out of hand. When Mark has to leave to pick the Judge up from the airport (he got back unexpectedly early, natch), they come back to find that nearly everything in the house has been stolen. Even the furniture. Can't Get Away with Nuthin' with a vengeance.
Rayanne had one of these in My So-Called Life. Word of mouth spread so far that someone invited her to her own party, not knowing she was the host. The party ended when Rayanne's mom came home, then went out again without noticing that Rayanne had overdosed. Angela's mother stepped in and saved her life.
Even Sabrina the Teenage Witch had a Wild Teen Party though she was in college when she threw it. She threw a Halloween party to try and get her friends into the spirit of the holiday, and used real ghouls. More ghouls showed up and trashed the party and Roxie started a thing with Frankenstein. Naturally her aunts got home. Sabrina threw another Halloween party earlier in the second season but her aunts were home and she was busy trying to cover up the magical termites and the talking furniture.
Happens in season 2 of H2O: Just Add Water when Emma's parents are away and her mother's dolphin ornament gets broken. Also in "Bad Moon Rising" when Rikki trashes the house with her powers, Emma lies to her parents saying she had a party.
A variation happens in Lizzie McGuire where Kate's wants to throw a birthday party, but her cousin only invites her friends who proceed to 'deliberately' destroy things, orders a cake she wanted because she doesn't like chocolate like Kate, and actually forgot that day was Kates birthday. Only Lizzie, Miranda and Gordo show up. Lizzie calls her mother to get rid of the out of control partyers.
In The Brothers Garcia when the parents go out to dinner, Larry and George decide to throw a party but nobody wants to come. Lorenna happens to have a popular guy over that night however so they tell all the girls in school and the wild party ensues. Things get pretty crazy with toilet paper being thrown around the house and the father's antique crystal plate getting smashed. They clean up before the parents get home, but end up confessing. Larry's narration says that they keep on confessing to other things they'd been hiding and the parents are so stunned by all this that they just ground the kids for one week and call it even.
S Club 7 managed to pull this off when they were house sitting. Unfortunately for them the house is a mansion in LA and they can't even begin to clean up before the owner gets home. However the owner turns out to be a party man himself and continues the party through the day.
Hope And Faith had Sydney throwing a party while her parents were out. She and Hailey manage to clear everyone away and clean up before Charlie and Hope get home. They never find out.
A variation in Saved by the Bell. When Screech's parents are away for the weekend, the boys have a small party with just themselves in his house. The girls crash and Violet accidentally breaks Screech's mother's statue of Elvis. Replacing the statue becomes the episode's main plot.
On a Halloween episode of Home Improvement, Brad's crazy friend Jason convinces him to throw one of these parties when Tim and Jill go out to an awards ceremony for local TV shows. In the middle of things, Brad goes out to the backyard fence to get advice from Wilson, and that's when Tim and Jill walk in on the whole thing.
In Family Matters, after Eddie invites a friend over while Carl and Harriet are away, a party erupts. Two rival football teams show up and argue. When they attempt to redo a disputed play from a past game a gravyboat goes through the window. There is mention of Jello in the bathtub, and Carl finds Urkel stuffed in the couch.
Jenny's birthday party-turned-rager in Gossip Girl. Pictures are tilted, Lily van der Woodsen's clothes are worn by complete strangers, people try to have sex in the van der Woodsens' bedrooms. Not to mention Vanya (the van der Woodsens' doorman) has to fight back complete strangers from coming into the van der Woodsens' building and the police have to bring Rufus and Lily back to said building to stop the rager.
A fairly mild example happens in Blue Water High. Possibly unique in that the kids decide to come clean about it themselves rather than trying to cover it up.
Although technically not a Wild Teen Party, Even Stevens does have a similar issue where, while the parents had to leave the house for a bit, Louis actually uses the opportunity to use the house as a hotel as a fund-raiser for a ski trip. Louis (and eventually Ren, as soon as she finds out and ends up allowing it to happen due to a boy at the house) eventually ended up having to get the guests to leave early due to the parents coming home early (When the parents called to check up on Louis, one of the guests answered and, mistaking "Louis" for her husband rather than the guy actually running the hotel, responded that Louis broke his back [Beans had injured the other Louis earlier due to using boots to massage his back], and the woman mistook her for a woman that Louis may have actually been seeing while still married to her.). They would have gotten away with it, had one of the guests also not also happen to be one of San Fancisco's news anchors and more importantly reported on the "hotel" on the news the next morning with the parents watching.
Averted in The Inbetweeners. The lads wind up at two house parties in total. The first one is rather lifeless and nothing really happens, bar Will hooking up with Charlotte (Will even refers to it as a shit party in the narration). The second is a birthday party that the lads gatecrash and, while it is busy, it's hardly wild especially as the boys simply stand around not talking to anyone.
Glee: Rachel Berry attempts to have one. Needless to say, it fails miserably— until they break out the alcohol, that is.
George in The George Lopez Show finds out Carmen is at one of these when she leaves her IM up on the computer. He goes over, ends the party and takes Carmen home.
The former header image for this page was from "Mr. Monk Goes to a Rock Concert", which due to its natural setting, has lots of lewd and out of control behavior going on when Monk accompanies Natalie and Captain Stottlemeyer to locate Stottlemeyer's son Jared, who has ditched school. Monk is horrified upon realizing what exactly he decided to tag along to, having thought when Stottlemeyer said the phrase "rock show" that he meant "geology exhibit". While waiting for Stottlemeyer and Natalie, Monk ends up making a very unsuccessful attempt to stop a couple from passionately making out on the hood of Stottlemeyer's car, yelling at them, "How old are you? There's no way you're 25!"
In fact, in every crowd scene, there are shirtless male extras or female extras who are literally only wearing their underwear or bikinis (for instance, the tan girl that Monk deflects a blue beachball at while he's trying to find the payphones). Strangely, at no point in the episode does anyone think Monk looks unusual by wearing a blazer, slacks, and a dress shirt. The only three women who are fully clothed and are never engaged in any lewd behavior for the length of the episode are Natalie and Stork's girlfriend Kendra Frank.
Inverted, for laughs, in "Mr. Monk is the Best Man". Monk organizes Stottlemeyer's bachelor party. Unfortunately, Stottlemeyer discovers the hard way that allowing Monk to plan a party, period, is not the way to go. Where do we start?
He somehow manages to stick a port-a-potty in the bathroom ("Monk, there's a bathroom in the bathroom!" "Where do you want me to put it, Mike? In the kitchen?" always is tickling).
He has them drink sippy cups of juice before breaking out the booze.
When he does hand out the beer, he promises one for each. And when he says "one for each member", he means it, because he gives one 12 ounce bottle for each attendee (12 total), meaning that, in an inversion of another trope, Randy must be assigned the role of "designated drunk".
Monk tells a joke about Stottlemeyer's failed relationships that turns cold before he even reaches the punchline.
Finally, Monk ends up choosing for their bachelor party movie Bachelor Party, a film that is implied to be unpopular with the other guys.
The only time the party comes close to playing this trope straight is when Randy staggers in, drunk, asking who owns the Ford Crown Victoria parked out front that is painted a charcoal gray with flames on the side, and on the roof and windshield. This leads everyone to rush outside and find that someone has firebombed Stottlemeyer's car.
The Steve Harvey Show: Steve tells Romeo not to have one of these when he goes out of town with Regina for a conference. Ced and Lovita decide to have a party to celebrate Ced's having paid off his Hyundai, and override Romeo's pleas not to have it at Steve's. Of course the word gets out and practically everyone in Chicago shows up. Romeo frantically tries to keep the house clean during the party but the house gets trashed anyway. The next morning, Ced and Lovita come over to Steve's house to help Romeo clean up, but Steve comes home unexpectedly. Ced and Lovita quickly leave, leaving Romeo holding the bag.
Another episode has Romeo tricking Lydia into having a party while she is housesitting for Steve who is on a cruise. The party is in full swing when Coretta, angry that no one attended her Sweet 16 party, crashes it. After the Record Needle Scratch, everyone flees, save Romeo and Bullethead whom she forces to stay so that they can dance and have cake with her and Lydia. She also makes them clean up and forces Romeo to buy flowers for Lydia to apologize for tricking her. Finally, she takes Romeo's wallet and all of the money in it in exchange for not telling Steve about the party.
Theo had one on The Cosby Show. It was just supposed to be only eight people: Theo, his three friends, and their girlfriends. The word gets out on campus and everyone shows up and trashes the house. Cliff and Clair come home and sees the destruction, and as punishment, Cliff has Theo serve the homeless every weekend for six months as well as pay to repair the damages to the house.
In an episode of Castle, Alexis's plan to have a few friends over while her dad's out of town turns into a huge party when one guy invites the entire football team and another sends out a mass Facebook invite. When Alexis and her friend comment that the boy in question is kind of a loser and can't have many friends, Alexis says that there can't possibly be many people just waiting for an invite on a party, a bunch of people show up. In a variation on the trope, Alexis acknowledges that her dad wouldn't care in the slightest about the party, and she successfully clears up by the time he gets back: Castle notices the absence of an ornament that got broken, but he's too hungover from his own wild party to ask too many questions.
In Two of a Kind, Mary-Kate tries to throw a wild party while Kevin is out. Initially only three nerds show up. But after another party gets cancelled, the rest of the kids show up. They manage to get everyone home and avoid getting in trouble with a Sarcastic Confession to Kevin.
Two and a Half Men: Bertha attempted to hold a party at Charlie's house while Charlie, Jake, and Alan were away for a week at Las Vegas without Charlie's knowledge. However, it ended up being cut very short when it not only became apparent that they weren't going to Las Vegas after all (they had to cancel the trip after Jake caught an illness, implied to be the flu), but they also walked in on it after hearing the music from the party. Bertha immediately covered herself by saying "Surprise" in order to make it seem as though the party was intended for either Charlie or Alan harper.'
Averted in Modern Family's third-season "The Last Walt". Haley sets the party up by Playing Both Sides, getting permission from Gloria for a pool party at the Pritchett-Delgado house by telling her "her uncle" had agreed to chaperone. But instead of Cam or Mitchell, she tells Manny he's the chaperone when the party starts. Unfortunately (for her), Manny takes that role seriously and keeps the party from getting out of hand.
On one episode of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, this is Played With. Phil and Vivian go out of town and specifically warn Will not to do anything stupid while they're gone. Carlton then rents out the house so that the band Bell Biv Devoe can shoot their music video about a wild party. The house ends up being trashed (as if it was a real party), and Phil and Vivian decide to come back early. They end up spending all of the money from the rental on fixing up the house. In another episode, Will lies to his girlfriend Lisa so that he can go to one in college, and ends up catching Ashley making out with a college football player.
Adam and Russell Parkinson, the two teenaged sons of Ria and Ben Parkinson of Britcom Butterflies fame, throw one of these when their parents are away for the weekend. They manage to get all their friends out of the house and clean up virtually all the mess that was made by the time their parents arrive home, but upset their easily angered neighbor with all the commotion outside the house when the party disperses, and Ria ends up finding a hidden stash of the marijuana that was apparently enjoyed by all at the party. As a subversion, she ends up using the marijuana to forget her own troubles (after starting out angry at her sons for possessing and using the drug).
Gilmore Girls: Attending the Wild Teen Party is played as a rite of passage of sorts, with the free-spirited Lorelai proud rather than outraged:
Lorelai: [proudly] So, not only did you go to a cop-raided party, but you started the raid?
Rory: [modestly] I was a contributing factor.
Alex's sister Sam holds one when they their parents go away in an episode of The Worst Year of My Life, Again. Alex's attempts to take advantage of the 'loop year' to avoid disaster the second time, but just ends up making things worse. As usual.
Music, CRANK IT UP!
The Dead Kennedys practically skewered this trope the only way they can with the above-quoted "Too Drunk to Fuck". That's merely the first verse and all the other lyrics qualify, including shooting out truck tires, clumsy oral sex and somebody "bawling like the baby from Eraserhead". For good measure, the song ends with what's been aptly called "probably the most realistic vomiting effect ever committed to vinyl".
The Bowling for Soup song Friends, Chicks, Guitars is an subversion. The song is about some guys who want to throw one of these, but their parties inevitably fizzle out because they failed to stock up enough booze (The title comes from the last line of the chorus, which goes "We've got friends, chicks, guitars, but no beer").
McFly's 'Saturday Night' was all about this trope, complete with references to getting drunk, having sex, angering the neighbours and being "grounded for a while".
Pierce throws one of these in one story arc in Zits. After things get out of hand, Walt clears 700 drunken teenagers out of the house by standing on a chair and announcing "I'm an orthodontist and I'm not afraid to prove it!". It's also implied in the ending that, although they cleaned up most of the house, they still had more than enough of a mess exposed for his parents to find when they get home (namely, the gutters are completely unhinged). Also, apparently he only had to tell Brittney about the party: the Telecom Tree did the rest.
One series of strips featured an inversion of the trope: Similar to the bachelor party in "Mr. Monk Is the Best Man", Peter planned to have a Halloween Party to which his dad granted him permission (mostly because Roger apparently forgot Peter's actual age), so they were all set up, only for it to turn out that most if not all of the invited people were freshman (barring Denise and Steve), and Peter was having a terrible time. The closest it ever got to playing the trope straight was when some adults arrived at the party and attacked Peter, and they weren't even invited in the first place (apparently they wanted beer at their party).
Played straight in an earlier series of strips where Paige and Nichole were invited to an upperclassman's party, where Paige was harassed by the lecherous host three times. (She clocked him the third time) and the thrill pretty much died when someone told them to find him, saying "some girl threw up in his bedroom". Eventually, when it became clear to the two of them that "unless you want to get drunk or stoned there's nothing to do" at the supposedly "cool" party, they were revolted and left.
Pinball — Gimmie Another Drink!
Jinni Zeala is all about getting to the Flying Harem and joining the Wild Jinni Party there.
Between the random appearances by football players and the hot girls wearing skin-tight pants, The Party Zone certainly lives up to its reputation as this.
Videogames — What Did I Drink?
In one of Paz's diary tapes from Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker, Paz explains that the Militaires Sans Frontieres often held birthday parties every month for soldiers born on that month, and she also implies that it was mainly an excuse to cut loose and drink alcohol. Basically the overall nature of the party is some guys heavily smoking, heavily drinking, eating meat, telling tasteless jokes and exchanging crude insults. It rarely ever gets serious, however. Once, Miller attempted to supervise Paz in order to shield her from the nature of the parties, but he became drunk himself, and ended up stating to the MSF "Hey, you should see the real Kazuhira Miller" before mooning them, with the soldiers apparently finding it funny.
The "Generations" expansion pack of The Sims 3 allows a teen to throw one if their parents win a free vacation
In Thalia's Musings, Thalia answers a mortal's prayer for comic inspiration by ordering him to throw one of these on Mt. Parnassus, which will infuriate Apollo.
Thalia: Call Pan and Dionysus to the Corycian Cave on the slopes of Mount Parnassus and host a feast.
Eustachys: A feast, Lady Thalia?
Thalia: Yes, a feast, a festival, a party. Not just any party, a party so awesome that Dionysus will wish it was his idea. Loud, crazy music; tons of wine; a huge bonfire; and, of course, the most uninhibited dancing imaginable. Oh, and do it tonight.
Eustachys: But if I do this on Apolloís very doorstep -
Thalia: You canít see why this is a good idea? Man, no wonder you canít write comedy. 
The Simpsons has occasionally featured this type of party, and the clean-up period afterwards, which usually involves an alligator and a man that sounds suspiciously like Charles Bronson.
A recent episode implies Homer throws one of these every Mardi Gras, and it almost drove them bankrupt.
The Berenstain Bears TV series finds an ingenious solution to the fact that nobody in their right mind is going to leave a bunch of grade-school kids alone to begin with: the party takes place on a night when Lizzy Bruin has a baby-sitter. Who was told she was supervising a cute little sleepover and grows increasingly flustered as half the school shows up, leading to the 'trashed house' version. Interesting also in that the Aesop here applies to the parents as much as the kids — the former shouldn't have just taken the latter's word for it that the Bruins were OK with a party.
There was also a book of that exact same episode. Papa Bear points out that if parents had compared notes, the whole thing would have been nipped in the bud.
Clone High had basically the same scenario as the Freaks and Geeks example above, except that it was non-alcoholic beer only because the only person who could have passed for 21 was also the resident The Ditz.
In an episode of Family Guy, the FBI agents assigned to watch the Griffins' home while the family is in witness protection throw a wild party with all the other FBI agents.
In a later episode, Mayor Adam West tells Quahog's townspeople about his plans to throw one (despite West being in his 80s in real life) but warns them not to tell his parents. They find out about it.
Timmy from The Fairly OddParents once threw one of these (despite not being a teenager), simply because it's what you're supposed to do when your parents are out. It included such people as escaped criminals, vikings and a walrus.
If I recall, he escaped trouble for two reasons: (1) He blamed it on Vicky, and (2) his parents would have been fine with it anyway if they had been invited.
The younger members of the team had one of these in X-Men: Evolution after they lured Scott and Jean out on a drive together. And then a gamer almost destroyed the mansion when he hacked into Cerebro, thinking it was a fancy computer game.
In As Told by Ginger Macie finds herself hosting a pool party against her will for the high school French class - because she accidentally revealed that her parents spent a lot of time out of town. The party isn't too wild but the girls have to deal with two Alpha Bitches trying to de-bikini Courtney.
Ginger attempts to invoke this in another episode to help a new girl feel welcome in town. Of course everyone thinks the girl is weird because she lives in a funeral home and nobody comes - that is until a few high school kids hear it's in a funeral home and think it's incredibly cool.
In one episode of Sponge Bob Square Pants Pearl invites some of her friends over for a slumber party, and they watch TV and eat chips. However, Mr. Krabs, expecting a Wild Teen Party, sends SpongeBob to be a chaperone — and SpongeBob inadvertently destroys the house himself.
Stoked!: Lo's End of The School Year party at the hotel, which gets so out of control (pretty much trashing the entire beach area and pool - Broseph drove Lo's jeep into said pool, and it lost most of its chairs to a bonfire - and ultimately drawing the attention of the RCMP and a television news crew) that it leaves her working to pay for it for the rest of the show.
Double Subverted by Beavis and Butt-Head, of all people. Our heroes actually want to host this type of party, and openly announce that they're having one. Unfortunately, the only person who shows up is the nerdy Stewart, who brings a couple of his friends. After some geeky conversation between Stewart and his friends over whether Michael could beat MacGyver in a fight, the real party starts when the party is crashed by Todd, a local hoodlum who Beavis and Butt-Head idolize. He kicks Beavis and Butt-Head out of their own house, and proceeds to trash it after holding a wild party of his own. When Beavis and Butt-Head come back, Todd trenches their yard and tells them they owe him $50 for party supplies, before tearing off down the street. Beavis and Butt-Head, of course, are simply thrilled that Todd came to their party.
The Proud Family double subverts this as well. It was intended that Penny Proud invite everyone to her party, or at the very least her friends, but LaCienaga ended up inviting everyone in the school, and to add insult to injury, her friends end up stabbing Penny in the back when they make it seem as though they actually did intend to go to her party, when they actually just wanted to use their house as parking space for LaCienaga's party. She ends up having to make do with people who she didn't intend to invite, some of them technically were legitimate in crashing the party (the Gross Sisters used invitations that were thrown out to enter Penny's party), and it took some time (and Aesops) for Penny to accept them as guests. Of course, by this time, LaCienaga's party went into an unexpected halt, and they merged with Penny's party, although Penny was still not too happy with her friends, considering locking them out, but decided against it, but still planning to exact revenge on them with the hair-in-a-glass trick that she pulled earlier in the party. Furthermore, Penny's parents are involved from the very beginning.
The episode where Penny has a sleepover plays this straight as Lacienaga calls everyone in their middle school to come over to the house. The party gets out of control just as Oscar and Trudy return home. Suga Mama is asleep the entire time, only waking up when Oscar turns the TV off.
Phineas and Ferb offers us a subversion. The family's parents are going on a trip, but Candace ensures them that she's not going to have a wild party, just an "intimate get together". And that's....exactly what she does. She invites over a couple of friends. Stacy then suggests she invites just a couple more people over, which Candace hesitantly agrees to. Then her boyfriend Jeremy comes over with his band, saying they just want to practice some music. Again, she hesitantly agrees, saying as long as its just for practice. Upon hearing the music, the entire NEIGHBORHOOD comes over, assuming it's one of her brothers' parties, which are awesome. The entire thing leads to this song:
Long story short, she desperately tries to get rid of a party that she never wanted in the first place — when her parents comes home early, it looks like the Contrived Coincidence that always protects Phineas' and Ferb's inventions will protect her, too... but for the first time in the show's history, it doesn't, and Candace is busted. Poor Candace.
Bloo in Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends throws a G-rated one while Madame Foster is out of the house for the day, it somehow ends with Mac running through the streets naked after getting hopped up on sugar. The typical result of the trope is subverted at the end: Madame Foster comes home and seems quite incensed about it...because the party was thrown without her. She gleefully moves onto the dance floor and the party continues.
Terry's friend Howard throws one in an episode of Batman Beyond. The party goes south when his Yandere robot girlfriend interferes with his attempt to pick up other girls and starts destroying the house when he tries to break up with her. She ends up exploding, taking the house with her, just as Howard's parents come home, having run out of vacation money thanks to him using it to buy the robot girlfriend. "The party peaked early", indeed.
In Unsupervised Gary and Joel were only inviting over two girls in an attempt to impress them. Of course, half the school decides to show up, but unlike most cases Gary and Joel aren't shown to suffer any sort of punishment from the parents, which fits in with the theme of the show.
The Cat in the Hat, along with Thing One and Thing Two, make a complete mess of the house. Fortunately, the Cat cleans things up just before Mom returns homs.
Tiny Toon Adventures featured one of these thrown at Hampton's house, course it wasn't his idea but Plucky's. Oddly it's not the party goers who trash the place but a neighbor, Egghead, who does so out of retaliation for the noise the party is making which is disturbing his study time. Karma thankfully saves Hampton when a sweepstakes Hampton entered awards him with a new house.
Braceface does in the promptly named episode, Home Alone. Though in an aversion its not Sharon who threw it but her brothers who take advantage of the fact their babysitter had to leave them due to family emergancy. Sharon tries to be the responsible one doing the chores and what not. The one time she does try to loosen up and relax is when her mom not surprisingly comes back early from her vacation. Though her brothers get her off the hook by taking responsibility for the party. The most punishment Sharon gets is not getting the desired curfew extension she wanted.
Partysaurus Rex does this with bath toys instead of teenagers. Rex helps to fill up the bathtub with water so the toys can have fun. They have fun all right, complete with light raves. Rex fills up the water with bubble bath and blocks the overflow drain with a sponge, causing the water to keep on rising. But then he realizes that means the water might overflow and leak into the hall — not that the bath toys care. At one point, a toy police car arrives to control the situation, only to start having fun itself. After trying vainly to stop the rising water, Rex pulls out a stopper and turns off the water, just as it reaches the top of the tub — only to realize he accidentally turned on the shower! Oh, Crap...
Real Life! The Best Kind of Party!
This example: When a British teen decided to throw a party while her parents were away and invited her friends via MySpace, far more than just sixty of her mates (which would have been a lot anyway) showed up. Between 200-300 people showed up, and left about £20,000 ($40,566) worth of damage in their wake. The teen blames her friends for hacking her account.
Ryan's Wreck: A three-day orgy of destruction that included everything from destroying furniture and using the remains to bash down walls to throwing a cat in the microwave. The cops arrested a few people, but no one was ever charged with anything.
Corey Worthington had a party get really out of hand after advertising it online. In Narre Warren South, Australia, police cars and neighbours' property were damaged while Corey's parents holidayed in Queensland. Dozens of police officers, a helicopter and the dog squad had to be called in to restore the peace. A fabulously snarky TV interview (in which he refused to take off his sun glasses, "Because. They're famous") cemented his celebrity status, and he appeared on Aussie Big Brother. Has also made money as night clubs offer people the chance to Party With Corey. Predictably, there was a Hype Backlash and he's one of Australia's most loved and hated beach bums.
One of the many glorified urban legends about 4chan claims that they use their Anonymous goons to regularly prowl MySpace and Facebook for parties, then raid them in real life with dozens of uninvited guests. In reality, this has probably happened once or twice.
In January 2008, a couple dozen teens in a rural area went to a vacant house for a party. They wound up doing several thousand dollars' worth of damage to the place. Obviously, that sucks, it was incredibly irresponsible. Unfortunately for all of us, though, the house happened to be a historic site, the former home of poet Robert Frost. So what would have become a local problem and maybe some vandalism charges if the police ever figured out who was at the party turned into several days of Kent Brockman News when the New York Times and other national news outlets devoted multiple headlines and editorials to this Wild Teen Party.
In October 2010, in Boca Raton, Florida, two teens at an elite private school decided to have their homecoming party at their parents' mansion, with their parents there but staying out of the way. Only about 150 people were expected to show up, but about 400 other teens crashed the party, bringing alcohol, and it went out of control. Several teens were arrested and the parents are being held responsible.
During Obama's years of College in California, according to Dreams of my Father, one of his friends, Reggie during a party in College in 1980, recounted during his and Obama's freshman college year that they threw an absolutely destructive and heinous party that lasted 40 hours with no sleep, from Saturday all the way to Monday, with everyone standing like Zombies, and with beer cans, beer bottles, cigarette butts, Jimmy throwing up on a spot, and newspapers littered across the room by the time the Latino maids came up. The maids in question were horrified at the state the dorm was in and started crying before they were forced to clean up the entire thing with no help. Going by Reggie's reaction through it all, he feelings for remembering the thing were similar to that of riding his first bike.
The "Project X Haren" party from September 21, 2012. A teenager from Haren, The Netherlands sent out a Facebook invitation to her friends for her 16th brithday. Unfortunately, she forgot to set the invite to "private" and it was passed on to 30,000 people. 3,000+ people showed up to the small town and basically caused a riot: setting things on fire, smashing windows, skirmishes with the police, etc.
Interestingly, this one happened with some unintentional coroboration from media, city officials and the mayor. The media caught on to the Facebook mishap and plastered it all over the headlines, the city actually considered (publicly) to organize something for the guests, and the mayor went back and forth on whether there would be a party or not. By the time the city had decided there would be no party, many people had already committed themselves to going anyway, party or no.