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"There is only one city in America.
There is only one city in the world."
They Might Be Giants, "P.S.O.K."

New York City is the place to be for characters in American fiction.

Is an Alien Invasion in progress? Watch for UFOs landing in Queens. Is there a neighborhood full of world-class martial artists with superhuman powers? It's in Brooklyn. Bunch of feared gangsters known to pummel ass and take names? Check out Coney Island. Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Destiny? Madison Square Garden's got your front-row seats. A magical gateway between worlds? Look in the Queens Midtown Tunnel, or perhaps Central Park. Looking for The Leader of a secret den of werewolves? He's probably chowing down on a burger at the Times Square McDonald's. Is there a mysterious gigantic cavern hidden just beneath the Earth's surface, wherein the Precursors created all life on Earth? Check in the Queens Midtown Tunnel again. Has The Plague or a Zombie Apocalypse broken out? The epicenter is in Harlem. And, of course, beware the Mage in Manhattan.

The rule seems to be that if a series or movie proposal does not require another setting (Kirk's Rock, for instance), it should be set in New York. If an original, successful series is set in Las Vegas, its Spin-Off will be more successful if set in New York. If you can't possibly get the show to happen in New York, have at least one main character (and as many minor ones as possible) be from New York, and continually harp on about how much better New York is than wherever the setting takes place.

In other words, everything is better with a side helping of Big Applesauce. Unless Tokyo Is the Center of the Universe.

At the very least, New York is where a great many writers live, or come from (either there or Los Angeles), which makes it more interesting to them than anything elsewhere. Not to mention easier for them to write about convincingly.

The preference is especially obvious when characters speak about specific parts of New York casually, when they always assume they’ll be able to find something to do near them, or when any group of people naturally includes a Jewish person; in other “places”, towns usually consist of about ten “distinct” spots, activities are extremely lacking, and Jews are a tiny, tiny minority.

Of course, this is Truth in Television in many ways; being the most populous metropolitan area in the United States (and among the most populous in the world), interesting events do indeed happen there far more often than in other locations, and there are many more fun and engaging activities within walking distance, which can be appealing to writers since characters sitting around doing nothing isn’t particularly good television. Further justification for this is New York's diversity. Very close to every single ethnic, racial and religious group is represented to some degree or another on the streets of the five boroughs, and nearly every language spoken on Planet Earth can be heard there. Also helping matters is the fact that New York is a major hub for business, finance, politics, culture, etc., which makes it that much easier to set stories of all sorts there.

It is worth pointing out a lot of NYC streets aren't actually filmed there; more than one California studio (and some other studios outside the US) has a dedicated NYC backlot.

Compare Fulton Street Folly, the localized version where everything inexplicably happens in Lower Manhattan because it's relatively easy to film there, and New York Is Only Manhattan, which describes the tendency to ignore the Outer Boroughs in fiction, let alone the rest of New York State. Indeed, outsiders who are aware New York is also a state are often surprised that an obscure place such as Albany note  is the state capital; people tend to assume the state of New York is governed from the city of New York. See also Tokyo Is the Center of the Universe for Anime and Japanese TV, Britain Is Only London for UK productions, and Hong Kong for Chinese-language equivalents. If the writers pick someplace off the beaten path instead, you've got Aliens in Cardiff. Cities suspiciously like New York even turn up in fantasy and sci-fi worlds.

If a story depicts New York as an unlivable hellish Wretched Hive (and is usually set during the period from the mid 1960s through the early 1990s), the sub-trope of Big Applesauce, The Big Rotten Apple, comes into play. See also Brooklyn Rage. You can also easily expect a "Cavemen vs. Astronauts" Debate if a New Yorker runs into a Chicagoan, because pizza is Serious Business for both and their pizza styles are very distinct.

If a story is set in a Big East-Coast Metropolis but is deliberately cagey about whether it's New York or Toronto, that's Canada Does Not Exist.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • In ACCA: 13-Territory Inspection Dept., Badon District bears a striking resemblance to Manhattan.
  • Every episode and every page of Blood Blockade Battlefront. The not-all-that-modified Hellsalem's Lot, formerly NYC, is so painstakingly rendered it's as much of a character as the series's cast members.
  • In The Big O, the very obvious ruins of New York City (now called Paradigm City) are not just the center but the practical extent of the universe.
  • Red Garden takes place around the Greater New York Area, though mostly on Roosevelt Island.
  • New York City becomes the background of the climatic showdown in Blood+.
  • Hetalia: Axis Powers occasionally makes a few nods to (including strips that take place in) New York. Which isn't that surprising when you consider the series having started there. The author lived there for a while.
  • Highlander: The Search for Vengeance mainly takes place in New York and now a city state. Most of the buildings are left for ruins by the Big Bad's skyscraper is the only new building we ever see in the world.
  • Banana Fish takes place almost entirely in New York City, and focuses on gang wars in The '80s (in the manga) or The New '10s (in the anime).
  • In Shin Getter Robo vs. Neo Getter Robo, the backdrop of Musashi's last stand against the Dinosaur Empire is the middle of southern Manhattan instead of Japan like in the manga. The entirety of New York is implied to have been vaporized by the Getter Rays explosion. Manhattan is also fought in and utterly destroyed in Getter Robo Armageddon.
  • In an OVA of GJ-bu, the club visits New York City, except that they rebuilt an exact replica of the club room and spend the entire time there.
  • In Guardian Fairy Michel, an unnamed stand-in for New York is seen in episode 13.
  • Every Shoujo genre anime in the 8:30AM Sunday timeslot on TV Asahi since 1994 (with three exceptions) will have at least one scene set in New York City:
    • The earliest example of this was Marmalade Boy, where Yuu's dream of going to New York was a major plot device. One variant of the opening titles to the show also took place in New York City.
    • One episode of the anime adaptation of Boys over Flowers was about Tsukasa visiting New York City.
    • Momoko from Ojamajo Doremi lived in New York when she was younger, which is why she isn't fluent in Japanese when she first meets the main characters. Her former life in New York is the subject of quite a few episodes.
    • Pretty Cure, the current series in this timeslot, continues this tradition:
      • In the 30th episode of Smile PreCure!, which involved the girls traveling around the world, they visit New York City, something Yayoi has wanted to do for a very long time.
      • In Go! Princess Pretty Cure, Kirara goes to a fashion show in New York City.
      • The very last episode of Maho Girls Pretty Cure! reveals that Jun, a former Magic School student, now lives in New York City.
  • Part of Love Live! The School Idol Movie takes place in New York City. The city nature as Melting Pot is even briefly alluded when the girls remarked of how easy for them to find a Japanese restaurant that serves rice dishes.
  • Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid has Kanna spend the day in Manhattan after running away from home following an argument with Kobayashi.
  • Moriarty the Patriot: Once Sherlock and William leave the UK, where do they end up? America. Which means New York City, of course. They get a place together in Brooklyn and work there with no concern about what happens in the rest of the country.
  • The ONA Sorcery In The Big City has an attack on Manhattan on Christmas Eve by magical villains with snowman-shaped mooks. The climactic battle takes place in Grand Central Station.

    Comic Books 
  • Virtually all the heroes of the Marvel Universe set up shop in New York, as well as the major teams like The Avengers and the Fantastic Four. (The X-Men were usually based in Westchester County before the move to Utopia, off the coast of San Francisco. They've since returned to Westchester.) Part of this was their distinction of living in a "real city" versus most of the fictional DC ones - and a healthy dose of Creator Provincialism, given Marvel is headquartered there.note  Teams not set in New York are either the rare West Coast teams, the "international" teams that pop up every so often, or jokes (the Great Lakes Avengers). Naturally, all the bad stuff for them to save the world from occurs in New York as well.
    • This is so pervasive that Marvel sells their own guide to New York, allowing you to walk around and see all the real inspirations for the comic sites.
    • Until recently, there was a giant, crowded, vibrant, multicultural ghetto of Mutants in lower Manhattan, known as Mutant Town, occupying roughly the space of our world's Alphabet City. Given that this overpopulated ghetto full of superpowered, alienated freaks was barely even mentioned outside its own book, District X (swiftly cancelled), it might perhaps have made more sense to set it down in a city that wasn't already swarming with superheroes, and the subject of 99% of Marvel's comics output. But, hey, New York is just that special.
    • This was Lampshaded in-universe during the Civil War storyline, when someone pointed out that if, for example, aliens invaded any place BUT New York, there would be no one to stop them (or at least, lots of people would die before the heroes could get there.) This resulted in the creation of The Initiative, a government program to give every state in the US its own superteam, with the Avengers remaining in New York while everyone else was drafted to new parts of the country. The program only lasted a couple of years, and once it folded nearly all the heroes clumped back together in New York.
    • This is also Lampshaded in Scarlet Spider; Kaine Parker flees to Houston to avoid Spider-Man and the Avengers, and ends up becoming the city's defender after seeing that it has no heroes of its own.
    • The prevalence of disasters centered on New York and Los Angeles are commented on in Deadpool, when the eponymous character is assigned a mission in Iowa:
      Deadpool: Eye-O-Wa? What is this strange, exotic land of which you speak, o grand exalted poo-bah?
      Director: *sigh* Not all disasters occur in New York or L.A., Mr. Wilson... despite what TV and comic books might have you believe.
    • Exaggerated in Secret Wars (2015), where the Patchwork World Battleworld has over a dozen versions of Manhattan between different domains.
    • Marvel decided to promote USAvengers with variant covers featuring all 50 states. The problem is, many Avengers were born and raised in NYC, so when Luke Cage got New York, others had to be spread to other states. Captain America in Delaware was justifiable (First Avenger = First State). Others, not so much, such as The Thing in Michigan and Spider-Man in New Hampshire.
    • The Marvel Cinematic Universe films have tended to avoid this, however, with very varied settings. The only movies with a heavy presence in New York are The Avengers, Spider-Man: Homecoming and Spider-Man: No Way Home, with the other three Avengers movies also having important scenes in the city, and the final battle of The Incredible Hulk happening on Harlem. This even extends to certain backstories, such as the MCU version of Erik Killmonger growing up in Oakland instead of Harlem.
    • This is not the case with the Netflix series, all of which are set in New York City (Harlem in Luke Cage, Hell's Kitchen in Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist and The Defenders) but not necessarily filmed in the neighborhoods they're set in. Brooklyn doubles for Hell's Kitchen, since in the shows, Hell's Kitchen is being rebuilt after the Incident. The Punisher is also mostly in New York, aside from early Season 2 in Ohio. Another streaming case is the Disney+ show Hawkeye.
    • While The Punisher is no stranger to out-of-town (or even country) settings, he mostly operates in New York (specifically The Big Rotten Apple with an endless supply of criminals limited only by the author's imagination), offering commentary on the social issues and the Gang of Hats that plague specific suburbs. In "Six Hours To Kill", he ends up in Philadelphia, and claims he hates the place.
    • The first issue of West Coast Avengers (2018) follows a Terrible Interviewees Montage with Kate Bishop noting that this trope is a deterrent for when building a team elsewhere (note that afterward she's visited by a New Yorker, Gwenpool, and instantly drafts her):
    Can't swing a dead cat in Manhattan without hitting forty freaking superheroes... here I interview fifty-two "superheroes" and the most promising one is Toast-Man...
    • That said, there are a handful of prominent Marvel heroes whose stories are set outside of NYC, many of whom are comparatively recent additions. For example, Kamala Khan is from Jersey City, and part of her characterization is that she's just outside of where all the chaos truly happens. Lampshaded when Shocker, a secondary Spider-Man villain, visits with the hopes of making a name for himself in a less crowded field:
    Ms. Marvel: Look, this isn't New York. We don't do cosmic battles every five minutes, okay? We have standards.
  • DC Comics averts this by having every hero protect a different (usually fictitious) city, although the two most famous (Gotham and Metropolis) are based on New York. The major The DCU comic book to be set in the real NYC was the 80s run of New Teen Titans which had the original Titans Tower on an island in the East River.
    • Superheroes that have lived in DC's New York include the Green Lanterns Alan Scott (originally based in Gotham), Guy Gardner, John Stewart, and Kyle Rayner; Plastic Man; Power Girl (when she's not living in Metropolis); Supergirl when she worked as a soap opera actress in the early 80's Superman Family comics; the Manhattan Guardian; Artemis while she operated as Wonder Woman in Wonder Woman (1987), the Teen Titans before they removed to San Francisco; and the original Sandman. Static and Hawkman are the protectors of New York in the New 52 continuity. The new Batman Jace Fox moved to New York in the aftermath of Fear State wanting to get out of Bruce Wayne's shadow and be his own Batman.
    • Though they originally met in Gotham, today the Justice Society of America operates out of New York City, their headquarters located on the site of the Sandman's old brownstone.
    • In Superman story arc "Brainiac: Rebirth", Brainiac sends his alien army to storm New York City for no real reason, since Brainiac intends to eliminate Superman, who famously lives in Metropolis.
    • Even more ironic: parts of The Dark Knight Rises were filmed in New York City (for instance, 33 Wall Street is the Gotham Stock Exchange, and there is an establishing shot of Lower Manhattan with bridges digitally added on the Hudson River side).
    • The maps in the DC Heroes Roleplaying Game (which aren't necessarily canon in the comics, but hey, we've got to start somewhere) indicate that Metropolis in the DC Universe physically occupies the location of New York City, while the map of Gotham City corresponds quite well to that of Providence, Rhode Island. Gotham's history is treated as if it were New York City, though, with the implication being that Gotham used to be The Big Apple equivalent until it was upstaged (in the last century or so) by Metropolis.
    • DC published an Atlas of the DC Universe in the early nineties. This located Gotham in southern New Jersey and Metropolis in Delaware (the DC Extended Universe follows these locations too). Several other locations have been floated over the years as well.
    • During the last few years of Wonder Woman (1987), Wonder Woman based Themyscira's embassy out of New York, though the actual scope of her adventures was still fairly international.
  • Doc Savage had his headquarters in the Empire State Building, and most of his stories had a large section in NYC before heading off to more exotic locales.
  • The Transformers (Marvel) comics feature New York increasingly predominantly throughout their run, even though the crashed Autobot spaceship is located at Mt. St. Hilary in the Cascades in Oregon and the early comics tended to head over to Portland if they needed a metropolitan area to trash with giant robots. The switch to New York came after the anti-robot task force known as RAAT set up shop there, and several later Decepticon bases were set up in the region. In a nihilistic alternate future the shattered corpse of Rodimus Prime is even displayed as hanging between the partially collapsed Twin Towers.
  • There is one DC comic set in New York City — Watchmen. DC's seeming hatred of setting comics in NYC becomes obvious when Ozymandias blows it up.
    • To be fair, in the film version, Ozymandias blows quite a few cities up; we just only get to see the New York bit go sky high.
  • In the Alternate History comic book Block 109, Nazi Germany manages to get the atomic bomb and destroys the most important US cities with the exception of NYC, which is used as testing ground for biological warfare instead. In the album New York 1947, a commando is sent in the ruins of Manhattan to retrieve the content of a vault, only to find out that the biological weapons used on the city turned its inhabitants into zombie-like mutants.
  • Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew! started off with Superman accidentally crossing dimensional boundaries and winding up in "Gnu York City", Earth-C's version of NYC, and meeting the future team's leader there (working as a writer/artist for his world's DC Comics). Later issues often featured the team visiting Gnu York (despite being headquartered on the other side of the country in "Follywood, Califurnia").
    • A few Gnu York landmarks, neighborhoods, and other features are mentioned through the original run and the Final Ark miniseries, including: "Bruteway" or "Broodway" (Broadway); "Fadison Avenue" (Madison Avenue); the "Chimpire State Building" (Empire State Building); and the "Statue of Ribbity" (the Statue of Liberty). Nearby locales include the state of "New Gerbil" (New Jersey), including the town of "Yakkensack" (Hackensack). Gnu York's nicknamed "the Big Awful" or "the Big Candyapple."
  • The protagonists of Garth Ennis' The Boys base themselves in New York City.
  • Mega-City One from Judge Dredd is essentially supposed to be New York City in the 22nd Century... and stretch from about Boston to Charlotte in current continuity.
  • Where does The Devil hang out after stealing your soul? Well, in J. Michael Straczynski's Midnight Nation, he hangs out in New York, and you have to travel there in a quest to get it back.
  • In Kurt Busiek's The Wizard's Tale, a bumbling evil wizard crosses from his dimension to ours looking for a book of spells. Naturally he arrives in the harbor and his quest leads him to Queens.
  • The Buffy the Vampire Slayer spinoff Fray takes place in a future New York, specifically Manhattan, now known as Haddyn.
  • The New York Four takes place in, drum roll please, Manhattan!
  • Barbara Slate's Angel Love takes place in New York City, complete with talking cockroaches.
  • In the Superman Family comics, Supergirl moved to New York City to work as a soap opera actress for a while.
  • Katie the Catsitter has a New York City in which superheroes (minus superpowers) and giant robot attacks are treated as a fact of life.

    Comic Strips 
  • Little Orphan Annie (and its subsequent theater adaptationnote ) is set in New York during The Great Depression; indirectly referenced in the 1982 movie:
    Miss Hannigan: Is that a fact?
    Grace Farrell: That's a fact. It's an awful time to be out of work, isn't it, Miss Hannigan?
  • In Jax Epoch and the Quicken Forbidden, Jax came back from Realmsend, magic started leaking into her world: a dragon flies around New York City, mechanical knights storming through the streets, and there was a heavy snowstorm in the middle of summer.
  • A Couple of Guys is set in New York.

    Fan Works 

    Films — Animation 
  • The title character in A Troll in Central Park is banished to "a place of rock and steel, where nothing grows." Guess.
    • There is at least one place where things grow, as the title indicates.
  • An American Tail: where else would a story about (anthropomorphic mouse) immigrants from Europe be set?
  • Oliver & Company: The intro lyrics to the opening song, "Once Upon a Time in New York City," borderline-Lampshade this:
    Now it's always once upon a time
    In New York City.
    It's a big old, bad old, tough old town, it's true.
    But beginnings are contagious there
    They're always setting stages there
    They're always turning pages there for you.
    • Also the film stars Long Island native Billy Joel as Dodger.
  • The Big Reveal at the end of Antz is that the entire film took place around a water fountain in Central Park's Great Lawn. The film stars Woody Allen.
  • We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story where it takes place in New York.
  • The animals from Madagascar live in Central Park Zoo, and a lot of local humor is sprinkled in the script, mostly thanks to one of the writers having worked on Seinfeld. The first act is basically a festival of New York gags, and features landmarks like Times Square, the Essex House, 7th Avenue, Grand Central Station, and the Rockefeller ice rink. Lincoln Center, the Knicks, Metro North railroad, and Lexington Avenue being mentioned.
    • Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa, which takes place in the African Savannah, features several tour groups who all happen to be from New York City, just so the old lady (from the first film) can give a rousing speech about their survival skills that culminates with "If we can make it there, we can make it anywhere" as she poses like the Statue of Liberty. It also sets up why they all recognize Alex later on.
  • One of the films in The Animatrix, The Second Renaissance, Part II, features a Sentinel demanding humans 'hand over their flesh' in the UN after signing a peace treaty before setting off a nuclear bomb, killing everyone. Yes. Everyone.
  • The "Rhapsody in Blue" segment of Fantasia 2000. The artwork was inspired by New York caricaturist Al Hirschfeld, whose cartoons chronicled the Broadway scene for the New York Times theater section.
  • The Danish film Samson and Sally has Moby Dick living in or near a submerged NYC, called 'the city that man built'.
  • Zootopia: The titular city's aesthetic takes a lot from New York, with subways, NYPD-esque badges, etc. note  Though it also has areas to resemble certain animals' environments. It also takes a lot of the complicated racial politics of a very diverse cosmopolitan city with a police force profiling certain minorities under the assumption that they are naturally more dangerous. However, many Californians will tell you that Judy Hopps's first view of the cityscape from her train looks an awful lot like San Francisco (a central "Manhattanized" downtown surrounded by vaguely Spanish-looking suburban communities in the hills nearby).
  • The Secret Life of Pets takes place in New York City, from the similarities many locations in the film resemble to actual locations in the real New York City to the first song heard in the movie being about New York.
  • My Scene Goes Hollywood: The movie's setting.
  • Wreck-It Ralph:
    • The Pac-Manorail station in Pac-Man has tiling that makes it look exactly like a New York subway station.
    • Game Central Station itself, which is obviously a reference to New York's Grand Central (down to the iconic three-window façade).
  • Barbie Big City Big Dreams is set in Manhattan, where Barbie travels from Malibu, Calfornia, to take part in a summer performing-arts program; another character, also named Barbie, is from Brooklyn.
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem takes place mainly in Manhattan, but the turtles briefly visit Brooklyn at one point, and the villains are based on Staten Island (which one of them calls "the best borough").

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Manhatta is a groundbreaking 1921 short film (ten minutes) showing off the high skycrapers, trains, and bridges of Manhattan.
  • Brooklyn Rules takes place in Brooklyn, New York.
  • There are eight million stories in The Naked City — a.k.a. New York.
  • The Seven Year Itch. Not only does it set itself in early 1950s New York, but it flashes back to 500 years earlier when Manhattan Isle was pre-Peter Minuit. Even when the action leaves New York, we just go to Maine - a different state, but part of the same Northeastern Seaboard. Ironically, the Marilyn Monroe character says she is a native of Denver, Colorado - the only really specific thing we learn about her background.
  • In Godspell (1973), the clown-Christ begins his ministry in the middle of Central Park, and wanders all over the (empty) city with his disciples.
  • In Ghostbusters, as well as its sequel, reimagining and Animated Adaptation, nearly everything paranormal — including the end of the world — happens in or near New York City.
    • Spider-Man once told a magical being (who was called "The Gatekeeper", according to Ezekiel) who came to New York that this movie was "required viewing" for New Yorkers. (Unfortunately, it seemed to have No Sense of Humor.)
  • Other Voices takes place in New York City.
  • In the 1978 film adaptation of The Wiz, the role of Oz is played by a Fantasy Counterpart of New York City. For instance, Emerald City is the World Trade Center area; also note the five Chrysler Buildings on the skyline.
    • Strange, because there are numerous cities around the world nicknamed the "Emerald City", including Sydney, Australia, and Seattle, but not New York.
  • Highlander has Ramirez telling Connor that eventually the Immortals will meet in "a faraway land" to fight for the Prize. NEW YORK.
  • The fairy-tale characters from Enchanted end up in New York... because, naturally, New York is the opposite of a fairy-tale kingdom.
  • Designing Woman takes place in NYC during the 1950s.
  • I Am Legend depicted the city abandoned after a plague decimated the human race.
    • This was justified, since the image of an unpopulated New York City makes for a more shocking visual than, say, an empty shot of Los Angeles or Dallas, where it's entirely possible to run across sections of those town that look abandoned, whereas NYC is almost never that empty.
  • Cloverfield featured a gigantic monster laying waste to the city.
  • Gangs of New York, obviously. Portrays New York as the 1860s equivalent of Gangsterland.
  • Hercules in New York. Zeus blasts Hercules with a lightning bolt, casting him out of Olympus. After some strange encounters in the air and at sea, Hercules arrives in New York City. It's somewhat justified by the obvious lack of budget of that movie.
  • High and Tight despite being set in Ireland has a family of Irish-American immigrants as its protagonists. The older brother Shane has a very obvious "noo yawk" accent.
  • Planet of the Apes (1968): How did George Taylor learn that the ape-ruled planet he was on was actually Earth? He saw the Statue of Liberty, and realized he was once again in New York.
  • In Coming to America, Prince Akeem of Zamunda announces his determination to go to America to find a bride. His servant Semmi replies, "All right... New York or Los Angeles?"
    • Lampshaded; to find his royal bride, he thinks Queens is the obvious place.
  • Labor Pains 2000 takes place in Manhattan.
  • Live and Let Die. Mr. Big's operation is headquartered in New York.
  • Hancock. If an ancient curse forces you to leave Los Angeles, where would you move? Exactly.
  • Hellboy:
    • Hellboy: The BPRD headquarters are located not far from NYC (bear in mind, in the comics they were in Fairfield, Connecticut) and the first red alarm we see them respond to just so happens to be right in the city.
    • Hellboy II: The Golden Army: The Elven King has his throne room in a NYC Railyard.
  • Men in Black is set here. The organization for monitoring and enforcing alien activity on Earth is based in New York City, and most of the undercover aliens live there for some reason. According to Agent K, the 1964 World's Fair took place in Queens so as to disguise the presence of UFOs, which were worked into the fair's observation towers, and the 1977 NYC blackout was caused by an alien as part of a practical joke. Agent J is a former NYPD cop, and the Statue of Liberty is used as a giant neuralizer. Only the climax of Men in Black 3 shies away from NYC, as it takes place in Cape Canaveral, Florida during the Apollo 11 launch.
  • Viewers get to see 1950s New York City in It Should Happen to You.
  • New York is the favorite target of disaster movies. See Meteor, Armageddon (1998), Independence Day, Deep Impact, The Day After Tomorrow, etc. Averted, however, in 2012 (given the director made Independence Day, The Day After Tomorrow and Godzilla (1998), that's enough of NYC in a career...).
  • The hero of the Die Hard movies is a New York cop. The third movie is the only one that takes place there, though.
  • In Destroy All Monsters, Godzilla shows up in the East River to give the city what for after the Kilaaks mind-control him and all the other kaiju.
  • Hitch is about a New York love doctor.
  • In the trailer for Past Lives, Nora takes her friend Hae-sung to see the sights of New York, such as the Statue of Liberty.
  • Q: The Winged Serpent shows that when an ancient Mesoamerican serpent-god is resurrected by a resumption of prayer and human sacrifice in his name, where else would he return than New York City, not, for example, Mexico City!
  • Earlier Woody Allen movies, period. Nowadays he seems to shoot exclusively in Europe, but earlier on, from the 1970s until the early 2000s, shooting in New York was one of his trademarks. There is even a film called New York Stories, where Woody Allen, Francis Ford Coppola and Martin Scorsese each film a segment with only one thing in common: New York as the centre of location.
  • The gateway thing is played with in Being John Malkovich: Those who enter the mind of John Malkovich find themselves teleported to the New Jersey Turnpike after ten minutes.
  • Super Mario Bros. (1993) started off in NYC, then jumped to Another Dimension where the only city on the mostly-desert parallel Earth is a Manhattan analogue called "Dinohattan."
  • King Vidor's 1928 film The Crowd, including a memorable sequence when the protagonist first arrives which highlights the film's theme of urban alienation.
  • Buddy (Will Ferrell) in Elf finds out his real dad lives in, naturally, Manhattan, and works in the Empire State Building, leading to many Fish out of Water moments.
  • The 2008 remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008) is set in New York, even though the original was set in Washington D.C.
  • The iconic climax of King Kong is of Kong climbing the Empire State Building (in the 1933 and 2005 versions), and the World Trade Center (in the 1976 version).
  • End of Days starring Arnold Schwarzenegger takes this trope to new heights. The film's basic premise is that the apocalypse would come at the stroke of midnight on New Year's Eve in the year 1999... but only after the ball drops in Times Square. It even gets a Lampshade Hanging:
    "So, the Prince of Darkness wants to conquer the Earth, but has to wait until an hour before midnight on New Year's Eve? Is this Eastern time?"
  • The Coen brothers' The Hudsucker Proxy, a period piece (1958-59) screwball comedy, takes place here.
  • Hamlet 2 and Real Women Have Curves both end with the protagonists going to NYC.
  • Death Wish, Death Wish 3 and Death Wish V take place in NYC.
  • In The Sorcerer's Apprentice, an ancient disciple of Merlin, his recently-unsealed rival, and The Chosen One to defeat Morgana le Faye all happen to meet up in Manhattan.
  • It's All About Love by Thomas Vinteberg takes place in Manhattan. Although it's mostly shot in Scandinavia.
  • In A Simple Wish, the meeting place for the annual convention of the North American Fairy Godmothers Association is in Manhattan. In fact it's just down 82nd Street from the Metropolitan.
  • Killer's Kiss was shot around New York. Most notable for the scenes shot in the beautiful old Penn Station, which was demolished a decade later.
  • The Mystery Science Theater 3000-featured Cold War film Rocket Attack U.S.A. ends with New York getting demolished by Soviet nukes.
    Crow: They turned the Big Apple into applesauce!
  • Spike Lee's Crooklyn
  • Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. Stereotypes, stereotypes and nothing else...
  • The Paper is set in New York, and could only ever be set in New York. Check the quotes page.
  • Trixie Belden and the Mystery of the Blinking Eye takes place in New York, and mentions many of its famous landmarks.
  • The original Gremlins (1984) was set in small town America but the sequel, Gremlins 2: The New Batch takes place in New York (and features a stand-in for Donald Trump).
  • The live-action film adaptation of The Smurfs involved the Smurfs being transported through a portal from a medieval forest into modern day Central Park.
  • Bright Lights, Big City
  • Soylent Green is in a Crapsack World future New York City.
  • The Time Machine (2002) moved the location of the story from London to New York reason.
  • Interestingly, most Marvel Cinematic Universe movies make an effort to avert this trope, considering how much the mainstream Marvel Universe exemplifies it (see Comics tab).
    • The Iron Man films move Tony Stark's main residence to Los Angeles (with much of the third film being set in Tennessee and Miami), the portions of Thor set on Earth take place entirely in New Mexico, London is the primary Earth location of Thor: The Dark World, the bulk of Captain America: The First Avenger takes place in Europe during World War II, and Captain America: The Winter Soldier takes place in Washington D.C. However, there are still some MCU films which follow this trope to some degree or another:
    • The climax of The Avengers takes place mostly in the area around Grand Central Station and the Metlife building, which is replaced by a tower owned by Stark Enterprises. And yes, it gets wrecked hard. There's a certain scene with Thor on top of the Chrysler Building conjuring up lightning against some Chitauri, and another with a flying alien creature crashing into Grand Central Terminal. Its location is fully justified as Loki needed the power source of the Stark building for his plan to work, and he deliberately chose New York because he wanted a big show. Stan Lee lampshades it in his cameo:
      Stan Lee: Superheroes? In New York? Gimme a break...
    • While the Avengers' HQ is in NYC's Stark Tower (the same one from the first Avengers) at the beginning of Avengers: Age of Ultron, it's moved to an abandoned Stark facility upstate by the end.
    • Every version of Spider-Man lives in New York City, so of course Spider-Man: Homecoming is set there too, with most of the film taking place in Queens (with our hero also venturing to Staten Island and Coney Island). Spider-Man's trademark web swinging makes most sense in a place with a lot of tall, closely spaced buildings, even though the angles would often indicate there's no place the web could be attached to. Downplayed in the sequel, as made clear by the title Spider-Man: Far From Home - it starts and ends in NYC, but the bulk follows Peter's European vacation.
    • Spider-Man: No Way Home: The only time it leaves NYC is when the confrontation of Spidey and Doctor Strange in the Mirror Dimension leads them to the Grand Canyon. There is even a climatic battle in the Statue of Liberty!
    • Other MCU movies that prominently feature New York City are The Incredible Hulk (the climax is in Harlem) and Doctor Strange (Stephen Strange having already lived and worked in the city even before moving his residence to New York's Sanctum Santorum).
    • Once Avengers: Infinity War moves onto Earth, of course it starts in New York City, as the Hulk crashes onto the Sanctum Santorum, and Thanos's Black Order is also looking for Doctor Strange. However, the other scenes on Earth are elsewhere (Edinburgh, Wakanda, and the Avengers HQ in upstate New York).
    • Lampshaded in Avengers: Endgame: While discussing the targets for the Time Heist, Black Widow is astonished to realize that three of the six Infinity Stones were all in New York at the same time at one specific moment.
  • Oliver Stone's Wall Street and its sequel, set in and around the financial district in Midtown Manhattan.
  • Keeping the Faith is set in Manhattan and used locations on the Upper West Side.
  • Oblivion (2013) happens in a virtually unrecognizable New York State. What remains of the Empire State Building is a plot-important location.
  • The Spider-Man Trilogy and its reboot The Amazing Spider-Man each take place in New York City.
  • The Other Woman (2009) is set in New York and features Central Park as a backdrop for many of the scenes.
  • A justifiable location for a meeting of Heads of State in X-Men, as it is the home of the U.N.
  • The setting of Sharknado 2: The Second One. They got stuff for weapons in Times Square, the Statue of Liberty got her head knocked off, and Fin ate a slice of New York pizza at the end.
  • Raising Helen is set in New York and some of the plot revolves around the New York lifestyle. She even makes a joke about "bridge and tunnel" which makes no sense to us non-New Yorkers.
  • In St. Vincent (2014), Vincent lives in Brooklyn, and most of the film takes place in New York.
  • The 1986 Dutch documentary Big Fun in the Big Town about Hip-Hop was shot in New York City, despite the fact that other parts of the USA also have a blossoming hiphop scene at the time. But it makes sense that a foreign documentary crew would go to the most well known American city.
  • State Of Grace is set on and shot in the West Side of Midtown Manhattan, primarily in and around the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood.
  • Much of Big takes place in New York City.
  • The Professional is primarily set in New York City specifically the historic neighborhood of Little Italy located deep within Manhattan aside from the last few scenes in New Jersey. Most of the film was shot on location in the Big Apple except a few apartment sequences (which were actually a hotel in Paris) and the final scenes in the New Jersey town of Wildwood which were actually filmed at the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken.
  • Mirage (1965) is set in New York, and much of it was filmed on location. Settings include the zoo and the New York City Subway, and a corporate headquarters is actually 2 Broadway. There's also a scene where Gregory Peck and Diane Baker walk from Battery Park to City Pier A.
  • Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan, although In Name Only as New York is not as prominent as the title may indicate.
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them brings the Harry Potter franchise to New York.
  • Tadpole takes place in New York City and Oscar's father, Stanley (John Ritter), is a professor at Columbia University.
  • Trading Places is primarily set in Philadelphia, but the climax occurs in New York City at the World Trade Center.
  • New York City gets destroyed eight minutes into Rewind (2013) — the rest of the movie involves a team of time travelers trying to prevent the destruction by bumbling around in 1929.
  • Planes, Trains and Automobiles starts in New York as Neal and Del are trying to get home to Chicago for Thanksgiving.
  • Nerve is set in New York, even if the original novel was in Seattle.
  • Can't Stop the Music, given the Village People are downright named for Greenwich Village. The first song in the movie is even an ode to New York named "The Sound of the City".
  • Rags takes place there, and it's described as a place where "anything can happen", and where Fairy Tale stories can come true.
  • Ali & Ratu Ratu Queens: The bulk of the film is set in an idealized New York. Ali immediately finds a surrogate family and falls in love with the business of the city, and every stranger on the street is helpful and kind.
  • The Bourne Ultimatum: The climax is set in New York City, as Bourne breaks into the CIA's NYC headquarters and also discovers Treadstone's headquarters. Includes a scene from the previous film, The Bourne Supremacy, shown with added context.
  • Sylvie's Love: New York City provides the dreamy, jazzy backdrop to Sylvie and Robert's romance.
  • The First Purge is set on Staten Island.
  • Scream VI is set in Manhattan, as the survivors of the previous movie have relocated there from Woodsboro in the year since in order to get away from the media, only to be pursued by the new Ghostface killer.
  • In the Heights is set in Manhattan's Washington Heights neighborhood and was shot on location.
  • Rumble in the Bronx takes place in the titular borough, but was shot in and around Vancouver, British Columbia.
  • Hoodlum takes place mainly in 1930s Harlem.
  • The Broken Hearts Gallery is set in New York City, although it was mainly shot in Toronto.
  • A Quiet Place: Day One moves the SF/horror franchise's action from upstate New York to New York City.

  • Angelina Ballerina has Angelina visit the "Big Cheese" in Angelina's Big City Ballet. She's overwhelmed by it all as she's from a much smaller village town, and her cousin Jeanne's constant insistance that tap is better than ballet doesn't help her nervousness.
  • The Baby-Sitters Club series has club member Stacey McGill constantly reminding the readers how awesome her hometown of New York is. The characters make a big deal out of Stacey being from the city as well and consider her more sophisticated for it. At least two books—Stacey's Mistake and the special edition New York, New York!—take place there when the baby-sitters visit.
  • The primary focal point for most of Baccano! is Prohibition-era New York. There is an exception in the Flying Pussyfoot story, which takes place on a transcontinental railroad... heading to New York.
  • Stephen King's The Dark Tower series definitely is an example of this. New York is mentioned frequently, and several main characters all come from there. The second book is split between Roland's world and New York. Everything just seems to be tied to New York. It's implied that New York is where the Dark Tower intersects with our world, literally making it the center of the universe.
    • Extends to The Stand, where one of the main protagonists is from New York.
  • Holly Black's Modern Faerie Tales take place in New Jersey, with several characters taking trains or driving up to New York. Additionally, New York City is where all exiled fae are sent, where the city and all its iron saps them of their powers.
  • In the Peter David novel Knight Life, King Arthur returns. In a clothing store in Queens. Oh, and his secret hiding place is in Belvedere Castle in Central Park.
  • The early urban fantasies by Mercedes Lackey were set on the West coast, mainly in LA, but she later moved the setting and focus to New York City. Elves bent on conquering the world and government conspiracies involving magic all seem to happen in New York.
  • Many lesbian pulp fiction novels tend to have the character going to New York because of the fame of Greenwich Village.
  • The eponymous virus of the Wild Cards series falls over Broadway. Because of its nature, outbreaks occur all over, but New York is still the major locus of the action. This is deliberate justification of the frequency of superheroes in New York City or a similar city.
  • It's Kind of a Funny Story takes place in Brooklyn.
  • Bordertown is a Shared Universe story about a portal to the Elflands opening in a city that is very heavily implied to be New York. Except when it's strongly implied to be Minneapolis, or a character is surprised to discover that a city he knows to be far inland has enough ocean shoreline to support at least one fishing boat. But the geography of Bordertown isn't supposed to map coherently onto our non-magical one.
  • Defied by Michael J. Nelson in his book Movie Megacheese. While discussing Nora Ephron's movies and her nonstop gushing about The Big Apple, Mike takes a few paragraphs to express his annoyance not so much the city itself, but with New Yorkers' insistence that the rest of America always agree with them about how awesome New York City is. Well, that and the hot blast of urine-scented air that can sometimes hit you out of nowhere.
  • Literary adventurers such as the Gray Seal, The Shadow, The Spider, Doc Savage, and others had bases of operation in New York.
  • Percy Jackson and the Olympians says outright that America is the current center of Western civilization, so all of the mythological sites that used to be in Greece or Rome are now in America. The Sea of Monsters, for example, isn't the Mediterranean anymore... it's the Bermuda Triangle. Where's Mount Olympus, one might ask? The 600th floor of the Empire State Building. Where else. It's also where the Titans begin their conquest of the world. And where does the main Egyptian series hub at? Why, Brooklyn of course.
  • The first entry in Diane Duane's Young Wizards series takes place almost exclusively in one of two alternate Manhattans; the final battle itself features every tree in Central Park, and every statue in New York City, defending the entire universe from an army of carnivorous taxi-cabs and lost-soul werewolves led by the being that invented Death, by reading a love song for existence itself. It is exactly as beautiful as it sounds.
    • Duane's somewhat-forgotten (but recently republished) Young Wizards short story Uptown Local takes place on (a slightly more interdimensional version of) the NYC subway system, and elaborates on the idea of the power of places where people crowd together and interact, naming the three most magical places on earth as Westminster Abbey, the Capitoline Hill in Rome, and the NYC subway. So You Want to be a Wizard also mentions, and Book of Night with Moon revisits, a worldgate complex (interdimensional transit station) hidden beneath Grand Central Terminal.
  • In So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish, we get to see what Ford's original article would be about Earth. In it, he includes advice for aliens who land in New York, as in where to land (anywhere), what to do (become a taxi driver), and where to go eat.
  • Most of the non-action scenes in Atlas Shrugged take place in NYC. Darn near lampshaded in the final scene, when the banker is noting the location of his investments, and all of them are totally or partially in New York.
  • The events of Caleb Carr's The Alienist are set primarily in New York City in 1896.
  • In John Birmingham's After America Manhattan is the scene of a battle for control between the restored US government and a coalition of pirates, mostly from West Africa and jihadis looking for a homeland after the Second Holocaust. A third group, funded and armed by The Mafiya sits the battle out.
  • The Caves of Steel takes place in New York. Well, future New York that is a Mega City underneath a gigantic metal dome, but New York all the same.
  • "New York" is the only place name that makes it into the list of 2000 most used words in contemporary fiction, at #1966.
  • In Max Brallier's Can You Survive the Zombie Apocalypse?, the zombie outbreak takes place in New York City and features much of the Big Apple's landscape.
  • In the In Death series, both the text and some of the characters treat New York City with a reverence bordering on religion. In one book Roarke feels the need to point out to Eve that New York isn't the center of the universe, to which Eve replies that it should be. The fact that New York state exists beyond New York City is generally ignored.
  • The Animorphs book The Familiar takes place in an alien-controlled NYC.
  • The A to Z Mysteries book The Orange Outlaw has the three main kids visit Dink's Uncle in New York City.
  • The Kiki Strike books focus on a secret underground city in the middle of New York. The book is spliced with facts about the real life New York City and its history as well.
  • Pete Hamill's Forever was about a man granted immortality who witnessed four centuries of the city's history.
  • Jonathan Lethem sets many of his works in or around New York, especially Brooklyn. Or a fantastic version of New York. Examples include Motherless Brooklyn and Fortress of Solitude.
  • The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton, which follows the lives of upper-class New Yorkers in the 1870s.
  • In the Star Carrier New York was largely evacuated due to rising sea levels in the backstory; one of the viewpoint characters, Lt. Trevor Gray, grew up in the squatter communities there. At the end of Earth Strike much of what remains is destroyed by a tsunami resulting from a Turusch Orbital Bombardment.
  • The first two books of The Mortal Instruments, as well as the fourth. The third book is set in Idris, but the trope is still in play, as the representatives of the faeries, vampires, warlocks and werewolves that come to Idris (which is located between France and Germany) are all from New York City.
  • In the Pendragon series, New York is apparently the most important place in the world, and is even visited in three different eras: 1937, 201X, and 5010. It's where Bobby is from, it's where all Earth's Turning Points occur, and it's where Ravinia is headquartered. Fridge Brilliance kicks in when you realise that events in all the other Territories were centered around one settlement, so why shouldn't it be the same for Earth?
  • In The Underland Chronicles, the Underland is located directly underneath New York. Of course.
  • The James Bond short story "007 in New York" has Bond visiting the city. The entire tale is a description of the place from his point of view, and his plans for the evening after doing his assignment.
  • Make Room! Make Room! (later adapted to film as Soylent Green) takes place in the Crapsack World of a severely overpopulated, environmentally ravaged future NYC.
  • Much of Christian Nation takes place in New York City, including the Last Stand between the forces of the new American theocracy led by President Steve Jordan and the last holdouts of American democracy and freedom, which the protagonist and his friend Sanjay are part of.
  • The Memory Wars is set in New York, and alludes to the city itself almost having a soul of its own, although it's specified that all places have this, as it's an energy generated from the emotions of the populace.
  • "The Cosmic Express", by Jack Williamson, starts in the New York City of 2432, though the action eventually moves to Venus.
  • The Power Broker is mostly set in New York City and the metropolitan area: its subject, Robert Moses, spends much of his childhood in Manhattan, and the peak of his career is his three-decade domination of the city.
  • Lawrence Block has several series whose main characters make their home in New York. In his Matthew Scudder series in particular the city features heavily.
  • George Selden's The Cricket in Times Square and The Genie Of Sutton Place are set in New York.
  • The children's picture books by Ezra Jack Keats are chiefly set in New York City. His books featuring the Kid Hero Peter, such as the Snowy Day and Whistle for Willie, are set in Brooklyn. The first book by Keats, My Dog Is Lost, involves a Puerto Rican boy Juanito going all over New York City to find his lost dog; he goes through Little Italy, Chinatown, Park Avenue and Harlem during his search.
  • In The Night of the Triffids, set after a catastrophe that reduces human civilization to a few widely-scattered enclaves, a traveler from England discovers that there is a surviving enclave in Manhattan, which he spends a significant portion of the book exploring. There are a couple of factors that make this more reasonable: enclaves can only be maintained on islands small enough to be kept clear of triffids (the protagonist's home is on the Isle of Wight), and as he's traveling from the east it has to be an east coast city for him to have much chance of encountering it.
  • Dancing Aztecs: New York is described in great detail by the author throughout the search. There are also multiple, page long tangents at the beginnings of different sections that go "Everybody in New York wants to be somebody." "Everybody in New York wants to get somewhere." And "Everybody in New York wants to be somebody", with long, humorous lists of examples describing the city and its people from multiple angles.
  • In Super Minion, it's mentioned in school that New York City straight-up disappears during Odd Summers. It becomes shrouded in fog, and emerges unchanged with no record of any intervening period (meaning that it likely has less supernatural weirdness than anywhere else). The popular theory is that the city itself triggered a superpower during the first Odd Summer.
  • In The Mouse Watch, Cyborg Mad Scientist rat Dr. Thornpaw has his headquarters in the crown of the Statue of Liberty. The climax has the titular heroes trying to stop him from taking over NYC.
  • Sid Stills' Blues (Three-Quarters in the Bag in Alphabet City) takes place in Manhattan, where the titular protagonist Sid Stills lives. One of Sid's songs is called "Times Fucking Square", which is about how much Times Square has changed over the years.
  • In the Whateley Universe, New York City has multiple major superhero groups (the Empire City Guard being the most prominent), a "teenage sidekicks" group, and a ton of "street heroes". There is a similar number of villains, and many super-powered individuals who just want to get on with their lives but still end up in the middle of things from time to time. There are at least three notable Bad Guy Bars, two of which have been seen in-story. A couple of the main characters (like Phase, She-Beast and Techno-Devil, and Seraphim) and side characters (like Tempest) come from the New York area, too. The trope is zig-zagged a bit, though; while it is made clear from the few stories set there that NYC is the center of superhero/villain activity, and pretty much the only city anywhere with more superhumans than Whateley Academy itself, most of the actual stories take place elsewhere (Whateley being in rural New Hampshire for the sake of isolation and security), and the Whateley students themselves come from around the globe.
  • While My Pretty One Sleeps is predominantly set in New York City. We get to see it partly as a glamorous, fast-paced, multicultural fashion capital with no end of things to do and sights to see, though we're also exposed to its darker and less sparkling side too...
  • Nory Ryans Song: The location itself never actually appears, but is namedropped often. Maggie and her husband leave to start their family in Brooklyn, New York, and Nory's goal is to one day live there as well with her loved ones.

    Live-Action TV 
  • MTV was established in the New York area and since the move to its iconic Times Square studio it has become even more NY-centric, filming nearly all of its dating and reality shows in and around the city.
  • 2 Broke Girls is set in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Williamsburg.
  • The portal which opens between our world and the world where fairy tales are real in The 10th Kingdom is located in New York's Central Park. What makes this miniseries a particularly striking example of the trope is how the opening titles quite conspicuously, and jaw-droppingly, magically morph the New York City skyline into a fantasy land to suggest the crossing over of magic into the real world. The sequence, quite justifiably, won an Emmy. To watch the sequence, go here.
  • 24 couldn't hold out forever. After setting the first six seasons in L.A. and the seventh in Washington D.C., the eighth and final season takes place in New York City.
  • 30 Rock: Justified because NBC and the show on which TGS is based really are located at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in Manhattan.
    • On the other hand, it references several things that only people who've been to New York know about, such as Duane Reade, cornbread from Sylvia's, the F Train being in Queens, and the G Train being horrible.
  • 666 Park Avenue is set at the Drake, a fictional hotel on Manhattan's Upper East Side.
  • In The Affair, the Solloways live in New York, and spend their holidays in Long Island.
  • Agent Carter, in its first season, is set in 1940s New York.
  • The Alienist is a mystery series set in 1890s Manhattan.
  • All in the Family. An ever-changing setting of a working class neighborhood in Queens during The '70s was the perfect backdrop for Archie Bunker would have to contend with Minority Of The Week. It's hard to imagine the show taking place anywhere else.
  • American Horror Story: NYC
  • Awkwafina is Nora from Queens: Specifically, the Queens neighborhood of Forest Hills.
  • Barney Miller, which is really The Big Rotten Apple, being a story about worn-down New York City cops in The '70s when the city was broke and crime-ridden.
  • The fourth season midseason finale of Battlestar Galactica featured a devastated planet, the "original Earth". The ruins of the city where the crew makes landfall were designed to be reminiscent of a destroyed New York City to help the sequence resonate with American viewers.
    • The actual finale, meanwhile, fast-forwarded 150,000 years from prehistoric Earth to show the two "angel" characters chatting about the future of humanity (and Cylonity), while walking through Times Square.
  • The opening image of Beauty and the Beast (1987) is a fantasy-font "Once Upon A the City of New York" and Catherine works as an attorney in Manhattan while the gateway to Vincent's world is in Central Park. Catherine's boss refers to her as "Radcliffe" to razz her about her upper-crust background, but it also serves to emphasize that, despite being a native New Yorker, having gotten her education out of state makes her something of a foreigner in the eyes of her more-pure-New York-than-thou colleagues.
  • Becker takes place in the Bronx.
  • Billions is filmed in and set in New York. Bobby is a survivor of the attacks that occurred in the actual city of New York in the year 2001, the Rhoadeses live on 8th Ave somewhere on the Upper West Side, and the Axelrods buy a new house in the Hamptons.
  • Blue Bloods, which is actually shot in NY, rare for a series these days.
  • Bosom Buddies
  • Broad City is set and filmed in various recognizable spots in the city, but from a city dweller's POV in regards to tourist spots. Most notable in "Stolen Phone", when Abby's phone is stolen, forcing Abby and Ilana to unwillingly track it down in the Upper East Side and through Times Square.
  • Brooklyn Bridge is set in Brooklyn in the 1950s.
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine is a sitcom about police detectives working at the title precinct in Brooklyn.
  • Brooklyn South is a drama series about police at Brooklyn's 74th Precinct.
  • Cagney & Lacey: The title characters are detectives at a Midtown Manhattan police precinct.
  • The main characters of Californication were originally from New York, and Hank often pontificates on its superiority.
  • Caroline in the City takes place in Manhattan.
  • Castle is set in New York.
  • Central Park West
  • The BBC America drama Copper is set in Manhattan during The American Civil War and focuses the New York Police Department. The protagonist Kevin and his police colleagues work a beat in the impoverished Five Points neighbourhood, but he also has friends and acquaintances living in the wealthier Midtown district.
  • The Cosby Show takes place in Brooklyn Heights.
  • In the Criminal Minds episode "Psychodrama", the team is sent to investigate a series of bank robberies in Los Angeles. When tasked with having to watch hours of victim testimony, Elle Greenaway essentially suggests L.A. doesn't have any sights making the lead detective correctly suggesting she is from Brooklyn.
  • A prime example of the Spin-Off variety (in fact, the very one alluded to in the main text) is the expansion of the CSI franchise to include CSI: NY.
  • Damages is set in Manhattan and shot on location. In fact, Glenn Close took the role of Patty Hewes on the condition that the show would be filmed in New York.
  • Daredevil is set mainly in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan.
  • Dash & Lily: The show is one big love letter to Christmastime in New York City, with emphasis given on indie bookstores, Central Park, charming places to eat, and the view of the skyline.
  • The Defenders (2017) takes place in Manhattan.
  • The Deuce is set in 1970s and '80s New York. The show's title refers to 42nd Street between Seventh and Eighth Avenue in Midtown Manhattan.
  • Diff'rent Strokes: The main characters live in a penthouse on Park Avenue on Manhattan's Upper East Side.
  • Dirty Sexy Money
  • The Doctor Oz Show is filmed in New York. Call-outs for participants to appear on the show usually specify that they must live in New York, or at least the tristate area.
  • Doctor Who: Since this is a British show, London, and in the new series also Cardiff, are usually the focus of alien activity, no matter what era the Doctor visits. However, occasionally New York gets a look-in.
  • Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23
  • East New York is a police drama set in the titular Brooklyn neighborhood.
  • Elementary takes place in New York and is filmed on location.
  • The Equalizer is set in New York City, as is its reboot series,The Equalizer (2021).
  • Everybody Hates Chris: The titular character and his family live in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Bedford-Stuyvesant in the 1980s.
  • Everything's Relative (1987) takes place in lower Manhattan.
  • Family Affair: The main characters live in an apartment on Manhattan's Upper East Side.
  • FBI is a Police Procedural about agents at the Federal Bureau of Investigation's New York City field office.
  • Felicity: The title character attends the University of New York, a fictionalized version of New York University, located in Greenwich Village in Lower Manhattan.
  • Flesh and Bone is about a ballet company in Manhattan.
  • Flight of the Conchords: The New Zealand comedy music duo's HBO sitcom is set mainly on Manhattan's Lower East Side.
  • In the Food Network Challenge episode "Celebration Cakes", one of the teams presented a cake celebrating the grand re-opening of New York's Museum of Modern Art; the team's assumption seemed to be that this would be worth more points due to a theme other than a birthday or baby shower cake, such as presented by the competing teams.
  • For the People, a drama about lawyers at the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, is mainly set in and around the Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Courthouse in Lower Manhattan (at 500 Pearl Street, specifically).
  • Friends takes place in Manhattan, with the coffee shop and the apartments in Greenwich Village being the most well-known settings.
  • In Fringe, the heroes operate out of Boston, but Massive Dynamic is headquartered in New York City, and the first season was filmed in New York until budget considerations forced them into Vancouver.
    • In addition, events the Alternate Universe take place in New York, including the Statue of Liberty as the headquarters of the Department of Defense and the gateway between worlds in an opera house in Brooklyn.
  • The Get Down takes place in the South Bronx in the 1970s.
  • The PBS-BBC children's series Ghostwriter was set in Brooklyn.
  • The Gilded Age is set in New York high society in the 1880s. The two main families, the Russells and van Rhijns, live across the street from each other at 61st and 5th.
  • Girls
  • The season two finale of Glee is set in New York. Since this is Glee, a Broadway scene is practically compulsory.
    • Season four has the attention split between the primary Ohio setting and some graduated students' lives in New York.
    • The second half of season 5 has Glee fully set in New York, focusing only on the lives of graduated students there, since New Directions has been disbanded.
  • Godfather of Harlem
  • Gossip Girl is naturally set in Manhattan's Upper East Side and, on occasion, Brooklyn.
  • Grand Army: The characters attend the fictional Grand Army High School, near Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn.
  • Grounded for Life takes place in Staten Island. It is never specified which neighborhood the main characters live in, though given the large Irish population, it is most likely Midland Beach.
  • Season one of Heroes has many of its superpowered heroes meet up in New York, seeking to prevent a nuclear explosion there. However, the series also has many crucial scenes set in Las Vegas and Texas, and the occasional few in Japan or India.
    • As at least one critic pointed out, "Save the cheerleader, save New York" would have been a more accurate tagline for season one.
    • Volume Five's conclusion returns to this trope with Central Park being the backdrop for Samuel's dastardly plan and, by extension, also used during the setup for Volume Six.
  • High Fidelity is set in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Crown Heights.
  • The Honeymooners takes place in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn.
  • An entire episode, "I Heart NJ", of How I Met Your Mother is dedicated to a series of arguments between the characters regarding whether New York or New Jersey is superior. Long-term relationships hang in the balance as they try to resolve this question. At first the argument starts off as a reasonable debate regarding the quality of life and standard of living between the two before devolving into a childish squabble about landmarks and hometown celebrities. The result is an episode that is headscratchingly locked-out for viewers outside of the Tri-State area.
    • Though anyone in the world can appreciate Ted's rebuttal to the information that Frank Sinatra was born in New Jersey: "Yeah but what city is he singing about? It's not "Secaucus, Secaucus!"
  • How to Make It in America is a paean to New York at times with two main characters, Ben and Cam, representing very different New Yorker archetypes.
  • The majority of How To With John Wilson is filmed on the streets of New York City, giving a close view of the bizarre events that happen there.
  • I Love Lucy (until season 6)
  • Impractical Jokers mostly takes place in NYC; the Jokers themselves are from Staten Island.
  • The Jeffersons is set on Manhattan's Upper East Side.
  • Jessica Jones (2015) takes place mainly in Hell's Kitchen, a neighborhood in Midtown Manhattan.
  • The Job and Rescue Me both take place in New York, but in the latter's case, it's kind of important to the story, what with the main character being a survivor of the attacks that occurred in the actual city of New York in the year 2001.
  • Just Shoot Me! is a Work Com set at a Manhattan fashion magazine.
  • Kate & Allie has the title characters and their kids sharing a house in Greenwich Village.
  • Katy Keene: The title character lives in Washington Heights and works at a fictional department store on Fifth Avenue and West 58th Street in Manhattan.
  • The King of Queens
  • The Knick is a historical drama set in New York City in the year 1900.
  • Kojak is about the adventures of a Manhattan-based police detective.
  • Law & Order and its first few spinoffs take place in New York City, although this has changed with Law & Order: LA and several international spinoffs, including Law & Order: UK.
    • The French title for the franchise is even New York, with a subtitle for each series (New York - police judiciaire, New York - section criminelle, etc.).
    • Notably, all Law & Order series set in New York City are also filmed in New York City, providing a much more authentic atmosphere than a set in California.
  • The History Channel's documentary series Life After People consistently plays into this trope. They do talk about other places but at least once an episode they have to go into detail about what will happen to the landmarks in New York over the centuries after humans disappear.
    • To be fair, the show is made by an American cable channel, and due to the effects of this trope, New York landmarks are most likely to be recognized by the majority of viewers. And urban landmarks are the most massively constructed of modern civilization.
  • The US Life on Mars remake was moved to New York, despite the original having been set in Manchester, a city whose US parallel would be more on the lines of Philadelphia or Detroit.
  • Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt for the Bone Collector
  • Living Single is set in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Prospect Heights.
  • Luke Cage (2016) takes place in Harlem.
  • Mad About You
  • Mad Men is set mainly in 1960s Manhattan, although it was filmed in Los Angeles.
  • Modern Love portrays different types of New York City.
  • Mr. Robot plays with the trope. The main setting is New York City, but some big events like the Stage 2 attacks are spread out over the country, and the Big Bad is based in China. In addition, main characters Elliot, Darlene, Angela, and Dom are all transplanted New Jerseyites.
  • The Naked City, which had a TV series besides the film mentioned above.
  • The Nanny is set in New York, since the father, Maxwell Sheffield, is a Broadway producer. The primary setting of the show is the Sheffields' home on Park Avenue, with occasional trips to Fran's home neighborhood of Flushing, Queens.
  • New Amsterdam (2008)
  • NewsRadio is a Work Com about employees at a New York City radio station.
  • New York Undercover
  • Night Court is set in Manhattan, as is its Sequel Series, Night Court (2023).
  • Nurse Jackie: The title character works at the fictional All Saints Hospital in Manhattan.
  • NYPD Blue
  • Only Murders in the Building: Nearly every character in the show lives in the Arconia, a fictional apartment building on Manhattan's Upper West Side.
  • The Other Two takes place in New York City and is shot at various famous locations around the city. Pat, the mother of the three main characters, moves to New York with her youngest son and embraces what she sees as a glamourous, exciting life. Meanwhile, her two older children have struggled to survive in the city and don't find it quite so glamourous, even if they do enjoy it sometimes.
  • Subverted with Pan Am. Although the home base in the U.S. is New York, each episode features at least one foreign locale. Most of the scenes take place at the destination or aboard the plane, though New York is always the end of the journey.
  • The Parent 'Hood is a sitcom about a college professor and his family living in Harlem.
  • The Patty Duke Show is set in Brooklyn Heights, which is mentioned in its famous theme song.
  • Person of Interest takes place in New York City, and is shot on location throughout the five boroughs.
  • Pose
  • Power is set in New York and filmed there. Two of its Spin-Off series, Power Book II: Ghost and Power Book III: Raising Kanan, also take place in the city.
  • Raising the Bar
  • Rhoda is set in Manhattan and the Bronx. This Spin-Off of The Mary Tyler Moore Show centers on Rhoda Morgenstern, a Bronx native who moves back to New York from Minneapolis in the pilot episode. As she says in the Opening Narration: "New York, this is your last chance!"
  • Ringer takes place in Manhattan. A major scene in the pilot was shot on location at the American Museum of Natural History on the Upper West Side.
  • Rubicon is set mainly in Lower Manhattan.
  • Russian Doll
  • Ryan's Hope takes place in the Upper Manhattan neighborhood of Washington Heights.
  • Seinfeld (which likes to trash the more annoying quirks of the city as often as possible, often with entire episodes dedicated to the problems caused by oversized parking garages, impossible-to-find parking spaces, and infuriating subway systems).
  • Sesame Street is set in New York, in an unnamed borough (probably Brooklyn or Queens).
  • Sex and the City. The City is exactly that. Its French title is even "Sexe à New York".
  • The Single Guy is set in Manhattan.
  • The famous opening sequence of The Sopranos, which takes place primarily in New Jersey, depicts main character Tony Soprano driving away from New York. Series creator David Chase says this was specifically to underline the fact that, in contrast to most gangster movies, it was not set there.
  • Spin City: A multi-camera sitcom revolving around workers at City Hall in Lower Manhattan.
  • The original Time Travel episode of Star Trek: The Original Series, "The City on the Edge of Forever", sends Kirk, Spock, and McCoy to Depression-era New York City. "Assignment: Earth" had Gary Seven setting up in New York City. However, later time jaunts seem to focus on the West Coast, especially San Francisco. Non-Time Travel trips to Earth also focus on San Francisco, since Starfleet headquarters is there. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, spends about equal time in San Francisco and New Orleans (where Captain Sisko grew up and where his father still lives and owns a restaurant).
  • Suits is about lawyers at a fictional Manhattan law firm, initially known as Pearson Hardman, whose offices at 601 East 54th Street have a view of the Chrysler Building.
  • Taina: Taina Morales and her friends attend the Manhattan School of the Performing Arts, a fictionalized version of the Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts.
  • Taxi is set in Manhattan. The show's opening credits show a cab traveling east on the Queensboro Bridge, which connects Manhattan's Upper East Side to the Queens neighborhood of Long Island City.
  • Taxi Brooklyn
  • The Tomorrow People (2013): The main characters are based in an abandoned Lower Manhattan subway station, not far from the Financial District's Broad Street station.
  • Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt takes place mostly in Manhattan and exploits it heavily. After being rescued from the bunker, Kimmy is taken to be on Today on NBC and decides to stay in New York to make a new life for herself. She moves in with Titus, with Lillian as their landlady, in an unnamed neighborhood in Upper Manhattan. Titus aspires to sing on Broadway and most of Jacqueline's material centers around her being a sheltered Park Avenue wife and later trying to grow out of it. Lillian has never left Manhattan until the end of season one and can't drive, and is still hoping to see the completion of the 2nd Avenue Subway.
  • So far all of V (2009) takes place in New York City. Even though alien ships have supposedly landed in major cities all over the world, they're only ever seen in the periphery flashes as the main characters all have their dealings in (or above) New York.
  • Veronica's Closet is set in New York City.
  • The Walking Dead: Dead City, a Sequel Series to The Walking Dead, takes place in Manhattan during an ongoing Zombie Apocalypse.
  • The Watchful Eye is set in the Greybourne, a fictional apartment building on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.
  • The Wayans Bros.: The Brothers and Pops live in Harlem.
  • Welcome Back, Kotter is set in Brooklyn's Bensonhurst neighborhood.
  • What I Like About You
  • What We Do in the Shadows (2019) is set mainly on Staten Island. In a few episodes, the main characters venture into other boroughs.
  • Will & Grace takes place mostly in Manhattan. Occasional trips to the Outer Boroughs happen, most often Brooklyn, where Grace even lived in seasons 5 and 6, but the main characters were known for having low opinions of these locations.
  • Without a Trace takes place in the city, and makes references to events like 9/11.
  • Wizards of Waverly Place takes place in New York City. Waverly Place is a real street in the Greenwich Village section of Manhattan.
  • Younger's main character, Liza Miller, lives in Brooklyn and works at a Manhattan publishing house.

  • Anthrax are the only metal band in the Big Four to come from New York, and are one of the hardest-working bands still around.
  • Billy Joel was born in the Bronx and raised on Long Island; as such, his more autobiographical songs (of which there are a lot) discuss New York City. "New York State of Mind" is the most blatant example; another one is "Miami 2017 (Seen the Lights Go Out on Broadway)," which is about the destruction of New York City and the survivors living in Miami in the year 2017—it was written during the 1975 bankruptcy of the city government. His songs may possess a few subversions. "Leningrad," "Allentown," and "Say Goodbye to Hollywood" come to mind.
    • Although in the context of the album (Turnstiles), which is really a Concept Album, "Say Goodbye to Hollywood" is really about going back to New York from L.A.
    • And lots of his songs contain plenty of references to places in NYC, too many to list.
  • UK artist Estelle's popular song "American Boy" lists off all the places in the US she'd like to visit, with New York listed first and more often than any other place (5 times). It also mentions Broadway and Brooklyn.
  • Gothic heavy rockers the Blue Öyster Cult are local boys: hence the intro on their live album Some Enchanted Evening
    All the way from Noo Yoik City - the Blue! Oyster! Cult!
    • Local references in their songs include the dystopian Joan Crawford, in which the revenant allegedly Satanist actress returns to Brooklyn as a zombie, spreading terror and loathing, so as to find Christina and discuss some of the more contentious points of Mommie, Dearest.
  • Suffocation is not from NYC proper (they hail from Long Island, specifically the Three Village area), but they are treated as an NYC band because they gained their initial fame in the city itself. There's also Frank Mullen's infamous "Lawn Guyland" tough guy accent, which is equally legendary.
  • Steely Dan throws around NYC-specific terms and locations so often that at least one website has been created specifically to explain these references to non-New Yorkers.
  • They Might Be Giants are New York-based, although both Johns are originally from Massachusetts, and apparently their songs are packed with obscure references, especially Village landmarks and personalities
  • The Bronx is recognized as the birthplace of hip hop. As a result, many rappers make it no secret that they hail from New York City, and countless hip hop songs have been made in honor of its boroughs, neighborhoods, and culture. Even rappers from elsewhere in the world tend to eventually make reference to the city out of respect to the music's origins.
  • Beastie Boys "Open Letter to the NYC".
    • Beastie Boys bring up New York in their music pretty often (it is their hometown, after all). More well-known examples of NYC appearing in their music, however, would include the song "No Sleep 'Til Brooklyn" from Licensed to Ill and the album To the 5 Boroughs.
  • Often in Cage's music. Cage was raised in New York City.
  • Dead Prez "NYPD" recounts the history of the city. Also echoes the nickname of the city "Eight Million Stories".
  • Andrew WK's I Love New York City is pretty self explanatory.
  • According to TOW, there are no fewer than seven songs specifically titled "New York, New York", including the most famous, popularized by Frank Sinatra.
  • "Empire State Of Mind," performed by New York natives Jay-Z and Alicia Keys.
    • "N.Y. State Of Mind" by Nas paints a far grittier picture of the city.
  • The Genesis Concept Album The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway takes place in New York City. Well, parts of the story do, anyway.
  • John Lennon and Yoko Ono's 1972 album Some Time In New York City was recorded and released not long after the two moved to New York, where Lennon would spend the rest of his life. Partly subverted, in that most of the songs deal with wider political issues; however, a couple — such as "New York City" and "Attica State", about the then-recent riots at the nearby prison — are about their experiences in New York and some of the issues they encountered there.
  • Lou Reed has an album called New York. He also sang about the city's gossip culture in "New York Telephone Conversation":
    Just a New York conversation, gossip all of the time / Did you hear who did what to whom, happens all the time / Who has touched and who has dabbled here in the city of shows / Openings, closings, bad repartee, everybody knows
  • Willie Nile's adopted hometown is New York (considering he's from its Crapsack World Evil Twin, Buffalo, this is hardly surprising), and he likes to mention it from time to time.
  • The Rolling Stones' 1978 album Some Girls was heavily inspired by the vibe of New York.
  • The concept album Snow by the Southern California-based band Spock's Beard is set in NYC, and was inspired, somewhat obliquely, by the attacks that occurred in the actual city of New York in the year 2001.
  • !Hero is a Christian Rock Opera with much of its story of Jesus taking place in New York City, which has become its Jerusalem for the main character.
  • Elton John and his lyricist Bernie Taupin have written many songs about, set in or namechecking New York City, including "Mona Lisas And Mad Hatters" (and "Mona Lisas And Mad Hatters Part II", written in 1988), "Wouldn't Have You Any Other Way (NYC)", "Ticking", "Levon", "You're So Static", and of course, "Empty Garden".
    • Elton performed a free concert on the Great Lawn of New York's Central Park in 1980, playing to a record-breaking 450,000 people. The show was later broadcast on HBO.
    • Elton also performed a record-breaking sixty-plus shows in his career in New York City's Madison Square Garden, and an honorary jersey was hung up with Elton's name on it in honor of the feat. The sixtieth concert, deliberately held on Elton's 60th birthday (March 25, 2007) was filmed and recorded for his Elton 60 DVD and live album.
  • A lot of Simon & Garfunkel songs have specific New York references, including "Bleecker Street." Lampshaded on the 1981 live album recorded in Central Park, where they start off with "It's great to do a neighborhood concert" (the crowd, of course, is delighted).
  • Laura Nyro's album New York Tendaberry is entirely composed of songs either taking place in New York or being inspired by the city.
  • KISS is from New York (Brooklyn, specifically). However, the band appeared on the scene during a decade when it was generally considered cooler for a hot rock band to be somewhere more toward the center of the country (Styx were from Chicago and Grand Funk Railroad from Flint, Michigan), so Kiss fell into step with a more blues-based style (at least in the beginning) and titles such as "Detroit Rock City." However, the most famous track on Ace Frehley's 1978 solo album was "New York Groove," which is a Cover Version of the song from an unknown band called Hello. And during the group's "no-makeup" years (1983-1996), the Noo Yawk accents became a little more prominent; you can hear them on "All Hell's Breakin' Loose" and their cover of "God Gave Rock 'N' Roll to You."
  • Eastern Pennsylvania-born, formerly Nashville-based Taylor Swift released a song on her 1989 album (released in 2014) based on her moving to a lofty duplex apartment in the city, titled "Welcome To New York".
  • Harlem hip hop duo Cannibal Ox write frequently about the city and its problems, and their portrayal frequently enters into The Big Rotten Apple.
  • The Paloma Faith song New York describes the city as a beautiful woman who easily charms those she meets and is all-around likable... and how much the singer hates her since the man she loves left her to live in New York as a result.
  • "New York, New York (So Good They Named It Twice)". By local singer-songwriter Gerard Kenny.
  • Russel Hobbs, the one American member of Gorillaz, is from Brooklyn.
  • "Fairytale of New York" by The Pogues, an (Anti) Christmas song centered around an Irish couple who emigrated to New York City.
  • Rammstein guitarist Richard Kruspe has a song about the city simply title "New York City" through his side project Emigrate. He lived in the city for most of the 2000s.
  • "New York, I Love You but You're Bringing Me Down" by LCD Soundsystem is a love-hate ballad towards the city, as the singer fondly dwells on the city's Big Rotten Apple past and wonders if his current perspective on the metropoilis is accurate or if present-day New York City still has admirable qualities.
  • The Ramones had songs such as "53rd & 3rd" and "Rockaway Beach" among others.
  • "New York Groove" written by Russ Ballard, was recorded by the band Hello. Ace Frehley later recorded a better known version.

  • Episodes one and five of Mystery Show use the New York City setting a lot. Episode one revolves around a mysterious video store that was located in Tribeca, and episode five involves host Starlee trying to find Jake Gyllenhaal, with a lot of sightings coming in from all over the city.

    Print Media 
  • National Geographic magazine did a pictorial on the three most culturally significant cities at year 1, 1000 AD, and 2000 AD. New York was, naturally, their choice for the year 2000.
  • Saul Steinberg's famous 1970s cover illustration from The New Yorker (pictured above) pretty much sums this trope up.

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Generally subverted, as professional wrestling in America has a very regional history, meaning that although some wrestlers may come from New York or the Northeast, far more come from the Southeast, Southwest and Midwest. (Hulk Hogan, the one pro wrestler almost everyone in the world is guaranteed to know by name, grew up in Tampa and was billed from Los Angeles.) Many of the wrestling moves most enjoyed by fans today (the suplex, for example) were created in (of all places) Iowa during the 1920s and '30s.
    • However it's worth noting that the WWE, which is the last major wrestling organization left standing from the old regional days had New York in its territory back then and New York and its Madison Square Garden arena was long considered home away from home for the McMahon family. Given that the Garden is only about a 35-mile drive from WWE headquarters, this is quite understandable.
    • Vincent J. McMahon, the late father of Chairman Vincent K. McMahon and founder in 1953 of Capitol Wrestling Corporation (sort of the proto-WWE), was born in Harlem about the time of World War I (shortly before Harlem became a majority black neighborhood). Ironically, although Vincent J.'s father, Jess, promoted boxing matches in Madison Square Garden, Vincent J. struck out on his own in Washington, D.C. (hence the "Capitol" of Capitol Wrestling Corporation)
  • There are plenty of examples of WWE Superstars who fit this trope: the Full Blooded Italians, Enzo Amore and Big Cass, the Dudley Boyz, pretty much the entire ECW contingent (Philadelphia rather than New York, but still pretty close). Even quite a few wrestlers who are non-New York will be baptized thus, often to establish a "tough-guy"/"streetwise" persona. Black wrestlers, for example, are likely to be billed from Harlem, partly in tribute to the McMahon family's roots and partly because, well, where else do Black people come from? D'Angelo Dinero, Booker T, and Ezekiel Jackson were all introduced to the world as Harlemites, despite actually being from Florida, Texas, and the South American country of Guyana, respectively. The most bizarre case is probably John "Bradshaw" Layfield, who, during the second half of his in-ring career, was billed as a Wall Street investor (which he was in actuality) despite wearing a cowboy hat and quite obviously being a Texan.

    Puppet Shows 



  • The Heisman Trophy is the most prestigious in college football; it was awarded by the Manhattan-based Downtown Athletic Club from the award's creation in 1935 until the club went bankrupt in 2002. The award ceremony, now handled by The Heisman Trust, remains in Manhattan. Interestingly, college football is possibly the only sport that is not represented in the New York City area, which has no top-level teams within 30 miles.note 
  • The New York area has thirteen professional sports teams: the Yankees, the Mets, the Knicks, the Nets, the Liberty, the Rangers, the Islanders, the Devils, the Giants, the Jets, Red Bulls, NYCFC, and the Lizards (Lacrosse). Together, they make up America's largest sports market. In addition, all of the leagues that feature these teams, with the exception of Major League Lacrosse, have their primary offices in New York. (MLL is based in Boston.)
    • The NBA and NFL drafts are traditionally held each year in New York.
  • Madison Square Garden has a snippet of Frank Sinatra singing "it's up to you, New York, New York!" that they use in Down to the Last Play situations. No pressure.
  • During the "Golden Age" of Major League Baseball, New York City boasted three teams: the Yankees, playing in the Bronx, the Giants in uptown Manhattan, and the Dodgers in Brooklyn. These teams accounted for over half of the pennants and World Series titles from 1940 until 1958, when the Dodgers and Giants moved to Los Angeles and San Francisco respectively. They also boasted some of the sport's most storied players: Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Joe DiMaggio, Jackie Robinson, Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays, etc.
    • Jackie Robinson became the first black player in modern Major League Baseball when he debuted for the Dodgers in 1947. The Yankees catcher Elston Howard was the first black American League MVP.
    • A flavor of this occured in the modern era when the Yankees and the New York Mets played in the 2000 World Series. Alternate logos for the Series included mock-ups of a subway sign and a manhole cover.
  • The Belmont Stakes, the third jewel of American horse racing's Triple Crown, takes place in Belmont Park, near NYC.
  • The NFL has had a policy for many years that the Super Bowl must be played in either a warm outdoor stadium or a dome. Many cities which are large enough to host a Super Bowl (Chicago, Boston, Seattle, Denver, Philadelphia, etc) were excluded by this policy until 2014, when New Yorknote  was the first one allowed to do so.
    • New Meadowlands (MetLife) Stadium is the home of the New York (Football) Giants and the New York Jets ... but it's in New Jersey. Justified in that the New York "Metropolitan Area" is huge and includes parts of four different states.note 
  • Inverted with the summer Olympic Games, which have been hosted by nearly every other city of equivalent size and stature as well as two other American cities, but never New York. The city had a notable bid for the 2012 Summer Olympics, but ultimately lost out to London due to a variety of reasons.
  • Joe Namath, former New York Jet and first superstar of the Super Bowl, was nicknamed "Broadway Joe." He could just as plausibly have been called "Hollywood Joe", since Hollywood had by that point (late 1960s) long outstripped Broadway as an entertainment mecca - but New Yorkers surely wouldn't have stood for that!
  • The Big East Conference has held their annual men's basketball championship tournament at Madison Square Garden (incidentally where member St. John's also plays several of its home games) since 1983, the longest running conference tournament at any one site in all of college basketball.

    Tabletop Games 
  • The starter setting for Werewolf: The Apocalypse (a game about monsters battling damage to the environment) is Central Park!
  • The paragon city for Geist: The Sin-Eaters is New York City, the reason given by the book being because so many people die there every day.
  • Underworld is entirely set within New York's subway system.
  • The bulk of Tomorrow's Starlight in Psionics: The Next Stage in Human Evolution takes place in New York City.
  • So far Rocket Age's only adventure taking place on Earth happens slap bang in the middle of New York, involving a Rocket car chase that takes the heroes from the Empire State Building to Lady Liberty. Interestingly this also seems to occur in universe; the other races of our solar system tend to assume that New York is Earth's capital.
  • The Ticket to Ride spinoff, Ticket to Ride: New York, has players making routes on a map depicting the city from Central Park to Brooklyn using the city's iconic taxis.

  • The theater industry itself. Theatres are divided into "Broadway", "off-Broadway", and "off-off-Broadway", based mostly on their seating capacity, and shows are forever branded as the highest level they've gotten to within the Apple. You can get up to about five offs before leaving Manhattan. Obviously playing in a Broadway theatre means being in the center of the English-speaking theater world — you'll see a few things billed internationally as Trope-tastic! The West End Musical, but not many.
  • Angels in America
  • Stephen Sondheim's Company. "Another hundred people just got off of the train..."
  • The Devil is a modernized Rock Opera take on the Faust legend, which has John Faust as a banker on Wall Street. The play first premiered in 2012 in... South Korea (with New Yorker Michael K. Lee in the original cast).
  • Neil Simon plays almost always take place in New York.
  • If/Then
  • RENT
  • Lin-Manuel Miranda's In the Heights takes place in the Washington Heights neighborhood, and Hamilton takes place primarily in Manhattan. The Hamiltons live uptown at 139th St, Burr lived downtown near Wall Street, and you can still see Alexander, Eliza, and Angelica's graves at Trinity Church. Though all the songs drop references, "Alexander Hamilton", "The Schuyler Sisters" and "It's Quiet Uptown" most explicitly reference New York.

    Theme Parks 
  • Several attractions at the Universal Studios parks are/were set in New York, where something huge is happening. These attractions include The Amazing Adventures of Spider-Man, Kongfrontation, Men in Black: Alien Attack, Doctor Doom's Fearfall and Ghostbusters Spooktacular.
  • Consciously averted by Disneyland, whose "Main Street, U.S.A." is made up to look like the otherwise obscure town of Marceline, Missouri, circa 1910 (Walt Disney's supposed hometown, although he was actually born in Chicago).
  • Also averted by the two other major theme parks in Southern California, Knott's Berry Farm and Six Flags Magic Mountain. Knott's has an Old Western theme and also features the Peanuts characters (whose adventures took place somewhere in the upper Midwest), while Magic Mountain (or simply "Six Flags", as it's been semi-officially known since the 1990s) tries to avoid depicting any specific region (although the California bias is obvious). However, Magic Mountain did once feature "Psyclone", a replica of an old wooden coaster from Coney Island.

  • Monster High: While the city is called Boo York, the film Monster High: Boo York, Boo York is set there, taking the main characters to a gala in the town and introduces new characters. Various tied-in doll line releases were also called "Boo York."
  • Pepper from Pinkie Cooper and the Jet Set Pets is from New York City and is a DJ, and the series and line are set in New York City.

    Video Games 
  • The Mario series has an interesting history with New York:
    • The original Mario Bros. and presumably the original Donkey Kong (seeing as the inspiration has this) take place in New York, the former taking place in the dense underground sewer network as Word of God states. This explains the show and movie expanding it to Mario and Luigi living in Brooklyn, and partially explaining their Italian roots. Later games (particularly starting with the original Yoshi's Island) have retconned this detail out so that Mario and Luigi have always lived in the Mushroom Kingdom.
    • Despite the previous retcon, Super Mario Odyssey has an area called "New Donk City", which is a location in the Metro Kingdom. New Donk City is essentially a recreation of downtown New York City, with one area containing many neon signage typical of Times Square. The city is, oddly, populated with realistic-looking humans who contrast the cartoon-like proportions of the usual Mario cast. Many street signs and license plates around the city make reference to the Donkey Kong series, especially the Donkey Kong Country trilogy, the mayor is Pauline, Mario's original girlfriend, and a festival taking place in the city is an homage to the original arcade game, leading some to think that New Donk is the retconned setting of the original Donkey Kong and Mario Bros.note 
    • Mario Kart Tour features a track known as New York Minute, being one of the first tracks in the series to be based on a real-life location. In this course, drivers race around New York Square and around the Central Park, and back into the city. Another version of the track was introduced during the game's one year anniversary. Interestingly enough, Pauline, the mayor of the city based on the Big Apple, favors this course. Both versions of the track were added later in Wave 2 of the Booster Course Pass DLC in the Nintendo Switch port of Mario Kart 8 as a combined version.
  • In contrast to the first and third game's Tokyo influences, the Hub Level of Splatoon 2, Inkopolis Square, takes heavy inspiration from Times Square. The Square's main landmark, Deca Tower, even resembles the One Times Square building. Fittingly, the game's Octo Expansion campaign takes place in an expansive underground subway system. These parallels are taken to their logical conclusion with the Final Boss of the Octo Expansion featuring a giant weaponized human statue off the coast of the city.
  • Lampshaded in Fahrenheit: in the opening cutscene, the narrator proclaims that such an epic event in the world's history as described in the game could ONLY happen in New York City, "capital of the universe".
  • NYPD officer Aya Brea encounters the first wave of a neo-mitochondrial epidemic in Parasite Eve, which takes the player through the subways, Central Park Zoo, the Museum of Natural History, and the Statue of Liberty, all while fending off Body Horror at every turn. Why New York? Because it's fun to see it get trashed. Even the game's Bonus Dungeon takes place in one of the city's famous landmarks, the Chrysler Building. The third game, The 3rd Birthday, deals with a mutant outbreak that manifests in New York City.
  • The first two Max Payne games feature New York predominantly in bad weather - the first during the worst winter blizzard in history, and the second during a three-day-long downpour -, and the noir-esque nature of the city is commented on by Max several times throughout the game.
  • Guess where Duke Nukem: Manhattan Project takes place?
    Duke: New York... If I can kill them here, I can kill them anywhere!
    Duke: Time to de-worm the Big Apple!
  • [PROTOTYPE] takes place in New York City. The Virus and the Army That Fights It trash the city during their war. All you can really do is finish the job or eat everyone while you finish the job. [PROTOTYPE 2] trashes it even further (with Manhattan being blocked from the other buroughs for suffering the worst).
  • The team working on Crysis 2 apparently chose NYC for the sequel, because it was the city that constantly appeared on the top of their lists due to its iconic nature. It's had an epidemic of The Virus, with the C.E.L.L. organization attempting to contain it by murdering any potential carriers-that is to say, anything that moves and isn't one of them.
  • True Crime: New York City takes place solely in Manhattan and allows the player to roam freely throughout the island.
  • The first two games of the Def Jam Series of fighting games take place in New York City, with the third, Icon, featuring the city as one of several locales.
  • Punch-Out!!, the NES and Wii versions, takes place in NYC as you see Doc Louis train Little Mac with the bike and you see the Manhattan skyline and Statue of Liberty in the background. Little Mac is also listed as being from the Bronx.
  • In keeping with the Comic Book examples listed above, any video game based upon the Marvel Universe will usually be set at least partially in New York City, even if it's just one or two levels.
    • In LEGO Marvel Super Heroes, the Hub City is a LEGO version of Manhattan, with every Marvel location that you would expect to find there (plus the X-Mansion, which should be upstate).
    • The world of Marvel's Spider-Man and its spin-off Miles Morales is an Open Sandbox-type game environment covering Manhattan in as realistic a look as possible.note  Real Life landscapes and building exteriors are part of the gameplay.
    • Both X-Men Legends have a level there. In the first, it's the very first mission, where Wolverine and Cyclops rescue viewpoint character Magma. In the sequel, Apocalypse attacks New York because, as he sums up, "Now I've razed their mightiest city".
    • This is where all the fun happens in Marvel: Avengers Alliance. Various landmarks both fictional and real are even specifically featured, including Stark Tower, the Chrysler Building, Times Square, and St. Patrick's Cathedral.
  • The final set of missions in the PC game Crimson Skies are based in New York and involve the showdown between Heroic Sky Pirate Nathan Zachary and Big Bad Corrupt Corporate Executive Lucas Miles.
  • Invaders come and take over the United States, while a plumber from New York rises to fight back. No, it's not some Darker and Edgier Mario game — it's Freedom Fighters (2003).
  • NYC is a recurring location in Deus Ex. Liberty Island was made the headquarters of the United Nations Anti-Terrorist Coalition after the destruction of the Statue of Liberty. The player can visit Battery Park and Hell's Kitchen.
  • Although not specifically by name, Liberty City of Grand Theft Auto fame gets progressively closer to its real-life counterpart with every passing sequel.
    • Even Grand Theft Auto III was originally supposed to be closer to that goal than it ultimately was; but due to when it was released and, the unfortunate implications of allowing players to kill cops, driving around in (at the time) current NYC police car paint jobs (blue and white), Rockstar realized that this would go over far worse than usual, and instead, distanced itself from the city Liberty City was supposed to represent. This included using landmarks from other cities (i.e. the airport) and giving cop cars a far more traditional black and white paint job.
    • By the time Grand Theft Auto IV was released, enough time had passed, and since the previous Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas featured significantly more accurate versions of Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Las Vegas, the new incarnation of Liberty featured plenty of parodies and depictions of New York City (and the surrounding area, such as Alderney being based on the sections of New Jersey closest to NYC). Rockstar went so far as to directly mimic famous landmarks and the current NYPD color/font scheme of their cars and the officers that drive them. If you really want to see this in action, head to Algonquin (Manhattan), then to Star Junction (Times Square), and take in the scenery for a little while; the attention to detail is definitely worth taking some time out of your playthrough to watch up close.
  • Steel Battalion: Heavy Armor's debut trailer highlights an Operation Overlord-esque United States offensive on Manhattan in 2082 against a currently unknown enemy.
  • Sakura Wars: So Long, My Love has demons attacking New York City (though previous installments took place in Tokyo and Paris).
  • Crazy Taxi 2 takes place in Around Apple. Both it and the third installment also have the smaller variation, Small Apple.
  • Hakaiou: King of Crusher is a kaiju themed action game where your character (who Was Once a Man) gains increasingly monstrous forms as you go on a global rampage. The last few stages is inevitably set in New York, with the Statue of Liberty converted into a mech serving as the Final Boss.
  • Hydro Thunder has the "NY Disaster" course which is Manhattan submerged in a flood caused by a meteor strike and volcanic eruption at New York harbor.
  • Test Drive Off-Road 3's New York is Manhattan in the middle of a blizzard.
  • In Enslaved, the slave ship at the beginning crashes in New York.
  • Even though Modern Warfare and Call of Duty: Black Ops have no explicit storyline connection to New York, both choose to set a Multiplayer level there ("Skidrow" for the former and "Stadium" for the latter). It does appear in Modern Warfare 3's campaign mode, as the setting of the first two missions. "Black Tuesday" takes place around Wall Street, while "Hunter-Killer" is centered on a Russian submarine in New York Harbour.
  • One of the early levels of Ninja Gaiden II (both the NES game and the entirely different Xbox 360 /PS3 game) has Ryu traversing the Big Apple.
  • Much of The Darkness is set in downtown Manhattan, and allows players to explore the streets and subway tunnels in between violent encounters with local thugs, mobsters, and crooked cops.
  • The Shivah is set in New York. At least partially justified in that both Judaism and organized crime has a strong presence in the real city and feature prominently in the game's plot. Plus, creator Dave Gilbert is an ethnic Jew living in New York, so he is probably writing what he knows.
  • Eight of the nine levels in Sonic Unleashed are based off real world locations, and the Empire City/Skyscraper Scamper level is heavily based off New York and some other American cities as a result.
  • New York is the basis for the Unova region in Pokémon Black and White and Pokémon Black 2 and White 2. Castelia City, specifically, is based on Manhattan, Nacrene City is based on Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and the rest is between Joisey and upstate New York.
  • All of Alex's stages from the 3 games of the Street Fighter III series take place in New York City. Combines this with Eagleland, as the last one is an unusually patriotic take on the New York City subway. Strangely, Sean also has a New York stage in New Generation, despite being from Brazil.
  • X3: Terran Conflict's introduction shows that New York City was one of the cities attacked by the rogue Terraformer fleet. Central Park is burned to a crisp with a huge impact crater from a meteor, while most of the buildings have been turned into rubble. Terraformer ships hover over the remains
  • In the backstory of Dungeon Fighter Online, the Earth (consistently referred to as Terra in-game) was destroyed. The only part of it that survived is New York City (now known as Pandemonium) which is drifting randomly through time and space.
  • The second stage of Ultra X Weapons have the players defending New York from an alien invasion, which climaxes with battling aquatic kaiju rising out of Manhattan Harbour before battling King Joe near the Statue of Liberty.
  • The original Wii's main processor was nicknamed "Broadway".note 
  • In Comix Zone, the story of Sketch Turner's comic book is set in "Newer York City".
  • Both the Allied and Soviet campaigns in Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2 contain a mission here. The Allied one has it start here with the city under siege by the Soviet Union, which is interesting as the Russian navy would have most likely crossed the Arctic at some point; the Statue of Liberty is hit by a stray rocket and collapses despite Agent Tanya's best efforts to sink the Dreadnoughts responsible. The Soviet campaign comes here in their third mission, where the goal is to set up a Psychic Tower at the World Trade Center to mind control the whole area (the towers could be destroyed by you for lots of money).
  • Red Alert 3 comes back here as the final mission of the Soviet campaign, where the US is the last remaining belligerent after the Empire is taken out and the Allies are pushed out of Europe entirely. The mission behins with Tanya taking out Soviet Dreadnoughts attacking the city, "just like old times".
  • The third game of the Miami Shark series, aptly named New York Shark, has you play as a shark causing disaster in New York City. You get to destroy a number of the city's landmarks, and attack pop culture icons related to the city.

    Visual Novels 
  • The title of Astoria: Fate's Kiss refers to the Astoria neighborhood of Queens. The VN centers around an organization for managing the activities of Greek gods and godly monsters from Classical Mythology, which for some reason is headquartered in New York City.

  • Heroine Chic takes place almost entirely in a New York City teeming with super heroes and super villains, with a focus on the fashion industry that caters to both.
  • The Imprint Chronicles is set in New York, where the creator lived for a good portion of his life.
  • Lampshaded in this Non-Adventures of Wonderella strip.
  • In Volume 5 in the series Outsiders, Siobhan Pattinson is offered a job at the top of the World Trade Center Twin Towers in New York. Once she takes up residence in New York, the city becomes a focal location in the subsequent volumes.
  • In Peter Parker: Foreign Exchange Student, Izuku learns that New York is this with its Kaiju problem, frequent invasions by Atlantis, and numerous organized crime families.

    Web Original 
  • The Epic Tales series Shadow Hawk is set in New York. However, the complete lack of references to any actual places leads one to believe that the writer has never actually been to New York, and is just treating it as a generic city.
  • From Things Mr. Welch Is No Longer Allowed to Do in an RPG: 665. My WW2 era mad scientist will pick a new target for his project other than Manhattan.
  • New York Magician: Mostly Manhattan, to be precise.
  • Averted with extreme prejudice in the 1983: Doomsday timeline in the Alt History Wiki; the only things landing on Times Square were about two dozen nuclear warheads. Decades later, scouts reported nothing but open water where Manhattan Island and Brooklyn were, and charred, radioactive wastelands covering the other boroughs and surrounding states. Reconstruction is estimated to be possible no earlier than 2060. Ironically, fiction set in NYC prior to the war (and created either before or after) is quite popular.
  • The Salvation War: Pantheocide: Lampshaded by Michael - the last Bowl of Wrath gets poured on New York precisely because it's the city that always gets attacked in fiction.
  • In the epilogue of Death Note: The Abridged Series (kpts4tv), Ryuk moves to New York in the search for "the Big Apple."
  • Oancitizen is sick of this trope, and more specifically the constant self-congratulatory nature of New Yorkers. He takes advantage of a ridiculously drawn-out rendition of New York, New York in the movie Shame to rant over top of it, name-checking at least half a dozen songs about the city in the process to make his point about how inescapable it is. He concluded by explaining that he recently moved there himself. (Amusingly, so did Todd in the Shadows, who has the exact opposite opinion according to what he had to say about "Empire State of Mind".)
  • The blog Humans of New York, a series of street photographs and interviews with people on the streets of NYC. This blog pretty much runs on exoticizing New Yorkers and implying that they're more inherently interesting than people elsewhere.
  • In The Falcon Cannot Hear, during the height of the Second American Civil War, New York is effectively controlled evenly by both the forces of the Provisional Government (the Blues) and a soviet loyal to the American Soviet Republic (the Reds). They get along remarkably well fighting the fascist Whites together, and cooperate peacefully afterwards. And after the East Coast soviets split away from the ASR and form the American Workers Collective, this teamwork serves as the basis for the formation of the anti-fascist Popular Front.
  • Bernadette Banner lives in New York and has made several videos in which she explores and discusses parts of the city, generally the garment district.
  • MetaBallStudios: New York City is very commonly used as the setting for the size comparison line-ups, likely because it's easy for viewers to visualize the sizes of its many famous buildings.

    Western Animation 
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, especially in the original comics and second animated series.
    • The '80s series took place here in the first few seasons, but later seemed to move to an unidentified big city
  • Futurama is set primarily in New New York City, a 31st century metropolis built upon the ruins of Old New York City (which still exists beneath the ground surface as a sewer system). The protagonist Philip J. Fry was born and raised in 20th century NYC.
    Bender: "New York City... the city so great, it inspired a casino in Vegas."
  • Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers: Although the Rescue Rangers' hometown remains unnamed and shows a little Geographic Flexibility, there are still landmarks from New York City to be seen and identified, namely the Chrysler Building ("The Carpetsnaggers"), the Twin Towers ("Robocat"), and the Statue of Liberty ("It's a Bird! It's Insane! It's Dale!").
  • Magical creatures are drawn to New York in American Dragon: Jake Long.
  • The situation is Lampshaded in the Ultimate Spider-Man episode "Spidah-Man," where it's pointed out that since most of the superheroes like Spider-Man and The Avengers live in New York, very few other cities have their own heroes. The episode ends with Spider-Man entrusting the protection of Boston to a teen hero named the Steel Spider.
  • They should change the name The Penguins of Madagascar to The Penguins Of New York, given that said penguins live... guess where.
  • It's a good thing that the Ghostbusters decided to set up shop in New York, since the Big Apple is regularly invaded by all kinds of demons, ghosts, phantoms, goblins, and other assorted evil creatures. This trope is sometimes averted, however, when the Ghostbusters travel to other parts of the U.S. or even overseas to places like Scotland or France to deal with the hauntings going on there.
  • A recurring location in the Strawberry Shortcake franchise is "Big Apple City", a clear parallel to New York City. Additionally, there are various place names that are take offs on various locations in New York such as "Times Pear" (Times Square), "Sentimental Park" (Central Park), and "Spinach Village" (Greenwich Village). The 2021 reboot, Berry In The Big City features the city as its main setting, rather than a one-off location like prior generations.
  • Ned's Newt: The episode "Newt York, Newt York".
  • The Critic takes place in New York and was described by the creators as a "love letter" to the city. It's really more of a roast in practice, as for every lovely shot of the Manhattan skyline set to Gershwin-esque music, there are at least two jokes depicting NYC as a filthy, crime-ridden hellhole packed with rude, hostile jackasses.
  • Gargoyles takes place (mostly) in Manhattan, and the majority of weird creatures and events keep getting drawn to this place. Most notably, the arrival of the titular gargoyle clan who originally came from medieval Scotland.
  • Superjail!'s season finale takes place partly in New York City, and Ugly Americans takes place there as well. Both are produced by Brooklyn-based Augenblick Studios.
  • The Simpsons 9th season episode "The City of New York vs Homer Simpson". Homer has to wait for a traffic officer to remove a parking boot from his car (which Barney left at the World Trade Center) while the rest of the family explores the city. This episode was pulled from syndication after the attacks that occurred in the actual city of New York in the year 2001, although it later started to reappear.
    • The one where Bart forms a boy band. They find themselves in New York but Milhouse is clueless:
    The Statue Of Liberty? Where are we?
    • Capital City, the "big city" in the state that Springfield is in, is nicknamed "The Windy Apple" - suggesting that it's some sort of mashup of NYC and Chicago.
  • Argai: The Prophecy sets much of its action in New York.
  • Captain Planet and the Planeteers had an Alternate Timeline episode where Wheeler (who's from New York originally) stopped the Planeteers from forming. He ends up in a New York City that's underwater.
  • Lampshaded in Xiaolin Showdown episode "My Homey Omi". Looking for the Shen Gong Wu in New York City, Omi tells his new friend Jermaine to keep an eye out for anything strange. Jermaine replies, "Omi, dawg, this is New York. Strange here is normal." Then the Serpent's Tail appears. "But this might quailify!"
  • Ugly Americans is set in New York. Except with monsters of every kind imaginable forming a good part of the populace.
  • The animated series C.O.P.S. (Animated Series) is set in "Empire City"note , which is highly implied to be New York in the future.note 
  • The Romance of Betty Boop is a Period Piece set in New York City during the end of the 1930s.
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic has the city of Manehattan (complete with a ponified version of the Statue of Liberty, and counterparts of a number of other New York landmarks).
  • Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur (2023): Series previews have confirmed that, as per Marvel tradition, the series will be set on Manhattan. In particular, the show will focus on Lunella’s neighborhood of the Lower East Side.

    Real Life 
  • Statue of Liberty: What's the one city the personification of Liberty decided to settle down in? That's right, New York!
  • John Lennon famously gave this as a justification for why he abandoned his native England to make his permanent home in NYC. "If I'd lived in Roman times, I'd have lived in Rome. Where else? Today America is the Roman Empire and New York is Rome itself."
  • Name a major American news network. Unless it's CNN (they're in Atlanta), it's based in New York. Possibly with some secondary bases in Washington, D.C.
    • Honestly, so much of the stuff that makes the news originates in New York that it can be hard for residents of the metropolitan area to remember that big news happens anywhere else.
  • After the American Revolution, and before Washington D.C. was built, New York City served as the capital city of the United States.
    • Before being replaced by the more central Philadelphia, which hosted the Continental Congress before the Revolution as well.
  • When the Erie Canal opened in 1825, New York became the only US city which could easily ship goods west of the Appalachian Mountains. The business culture and population of New York City exploded as a result, to the point where the growth was incomparable to other US cities. Much like modern TV writers, 19th century businessmen and merchants believed there were only two types of cities: "Places Called New York", and "Places Not Called New York".
  • Call it Black Comedy, but the attacks that occurred in the actual city of New York in the year 2001 make this trope sickeningly self-authenticating, complete with many moments of going From Bad to Worse (multiple surprise attacks on different locations from an unknown enemy, with the precision of a Chessmaster) where, for that day at least, the bad guys totally won.
  • New York City is called the "Financial Capital of the World". There is a reason why when you say, "Wall Street", everyone knows you are talking about money. While there are others, the New York Stock Exchange is by far the world's largest stock exchange by market capitalization of its listed companies at US$13.39 trillion as of Dec 2010.
    • Although, interestingly enough, many of the traders are based in London, therefore demonstrating both this trope and its transatlantic sister. This is because, thanks to the relative time zones, traders based in London can trade on both the NYSE Euronext, and the European and Asian Stock Exchanges in a single working day.
  • The United Nations is headquartered in New York City, which, in a sense, makes it the closest thing there is to a capital of the entire world. In fact, this is a reason why the Alien Invasion so often takes place in New York.
  • Interestingly, the dominance of NYC in popular consciousness frequently leads non-New Yorkers to assume that anyone who is from New York is necessarily from Manhattan. Because of this, there are strong tensions between the more rural and conservative upstate New York and more urban and cosmopolitan metropolitan area. Not to mention the divisions among the boroughs, Staten Island, and the non-Brooklyn and Queens parts of Long Island...
  • Tel Aviv respectively Tel Aviv-Yafo has the nickname "The Big Orange", a reference to the Jaffa orange.


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