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Elevator Going Down

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Jackie's in the elevator (whoa)
Lingerie, second floor (whoa, yeah)
She said, "Can I see you later (whoa)
And love you just a little more?" (whoa, yeah)
I'm kinda hopin' we get stuck
Nobody gets out alive
She said, "I'll show you how to fax in the mailroom, honey
And have you home by five"
Aerosmith, "Love in an Elevator"

What better thing for two characters bounding with Unresolved Sexual Tension to do when they get in an elevator together? Make out, or more, until the doors open, of course — which could be a while if the elevator gets stuck...

Sometimes preceded by an Uncomfortable Elevator Moment. Subtrope of Making Love in All the Wrong Places. Compare Born in an Elevator.

Do not confuse with an elevator plummeting to the bottom of the shaft, or an elevator whose destination is much further down than anyone would want to go. See Elevator Conference for the non-romantic version of this trope.

Do not try this at home (or more likely, at work). The typical elevator takes ten seconds or less to go between individual floors, so even in very tall buildings, unless the elevator is explicitly stopped (which will cause everyone waiting for the elevator to wonder what's going on and call maintenance. It should also be noted that some elevators don't have emergency stop switches that can be activated without a key, which only maintenance would have access to), there likely won't be time to do anything before the elevator stops, either at your floor, or to pick up someone else, making it highly likely that you will either not have the opportunity to actually do anything naughty, or you'll have just enough time to get into a compromising situation without having enough time to finish up and get out of it, resulting in getting caught and possibly being accused of public indecency.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Futari Ecchi crosses this with Uncomfortable Elevator Moment, when Makoto is sharing a ride with the Kubotas, a young couple of Insatiable Newlyweds whom recently moved in the building. As they start getting fresh right in the elevator, not minding their neighbor at all, Makoto is nearly dying of embarrassment.
  • Subverted in Hana Yori Dango in that, although Tsukasa and Tsukushi do start developing their relationship a bit more when they get stuck in an elevator and he gets sick and starts running a fever, she isn't really into him yet and neither of them is in any mood for getting frisky. When Tsukasa tries to tell his friends about it later, however, they grossly misinterpret his saying that "she strangled me all night long!" (with a leek in order to bring down his fever he neglected to say) to mean that she was doing some kind of crazy BDSM dominatrix act with him in — of all places — an elevator. They're impressed.
  • The Hentai anime Kininaru Kimochi is entirely about this trope. Three episodes, three explicit cases of Elevator Going Down.
  • Hayate the Combat Butler makes fun of this one. Hayate and Maria (she's in a Paper-Thin Disguise) get into an elevator. While they do have UST, Hayate's thoughts of whether he should confront her about having seen through the disguise are running through his head instead. Then the elevator gets stuck, and he knocks her to the floor accidentally while she's trying to fix it, just as Hinagiku (who he's about to rush headlong into UST with) gets the elevator working again in time to see.
  • Neon Genesis Evangelion:
    • Parodied when Misato and Kaji are stuck in a lift. They go to great length to keep their hands off one another, only to end up falling into a compromising position the second the doors get opened.
      Maya: fiends.
    • However, an earlier scene plays it straight when we cut in on Kaji passionately kissing Misato, while she eyes the elevator reader clicking down to the moment the doors open. Her protests afterwards don't seem very convincing to Kaji.

    Fan Works 
  • Evangelion 303: In chapter 17 Shinji and Asuka got into the hotel's elevator. Shinji pressed the "stop" button as Asuka gave him a blowjob. When they walked out of it, Shinji's shirt and trousers were rumpled and Asuka was wiping her lips.
  • The One I Love Is...: Subverted. In chapter 9 Maya is waiting for the elevator coming down. When the doors open she sees Asuka kneeled in front of a standing Shinji. She blushes, thinking they have just had sex. However, nothing like that had happened.
  • The "Turbolift Tales" subgenre of Star Trek fanfiction.
  • Gunslinger Girl. In the Mayfair fratello series, Chief Draghi prefers to avoid making eye contact with the cyborgs, so Vee pranks him by standing behind him in a state of undress as the elevator door opens on a couple of female Section Two personnel. They're aware it's Not What It Looks Like, but conclude that Draghi won't be making allegations of cyborg/handler impropriety for a while.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Two students trapped in an elevator during a blackout is the inciting action for the whole plot of 100 Girls.
  • In The Body, Álex and Carla have sex for the first time in the freight elevator going to her apartment.
  • Body of Evidence plays a variant: Rebecca unzips and fondles Frank in an elevator packed with unsuspecting people. He just barely manages to conceal what's going on.
  • The movie Class has a young man and his roommate's mother having a sexual encounter in a glass elevator.
  • In Fifty Shades Darker, Christian fondles Anastasia in a fully packed elevator while standing behind her. Nobody seems to notice, and the elevator seems to take a long time. They then make out in his private elevator when returning to his place.
  • Subverted for laughs in Day Watch. The protagonist Anton, while in the airport, needs a private place to swap back bodies with his colleague Olga (It Makes Sense in Context). Finally, they tuck into an elevator and perform the ritual, which just happens to be accompanied by some rattling and moans. Then the doors open and out come tousled Olga and very content Anton who just for good measure readjusts his zipper. The look on the face of some Asian woman waiting for the lift is priceless.
  • In Fatal Attraction, Michael Douglas and Glenn Close's characters have a sexual encounter in an elevator, preceded by this exchange:
    Alex: Have you ever done it in an elevator?
    Dan: Not recently, no.
    Alex: I bet you haven't.
  • In The Hangover, the four leads get on an elevator and as the doors open find a couple quickly getting re-clothed after the boyfriend was eating her out. (Fun fact: That's actually the director.)
  • Downplayed/Subverted in De Lift. When the titular elevator first gets stuck at the beginning of the movie, one of the two couples in it take the opportunity to have sex in the elevator. Before they can carry this out though, the elevator fully turns evil and everybody in it gets unconscious.
  • Mallrats: Brodie learns that Rene has begun a relationship with Shannon. Brodie confronts Rene to find out more about the relationship, and the two have sex in an elevator. Also a Slap-Slap-Kiss moment.
  • The Matrix Reloaded featured this pretty straight-up. Neo and Trinity are in the elevator along with Link and the Kid; as soon as the latter two leave, the make-out session begins.
  • Played with in the Leslie Nielsen parody of The Exorcist, Repossessed. A couple is enacting their own pun on "going down" when the elevator doors open. Linda Blair politely asks the man, "Are you getting off?"
  • The Secret of My Success ends on one of these. Then again, this was also referring back to the running gag of Brantley using the emergency stop on the elevators to give him a chance to change from mailroom-boy to hot-shot executive. Uncomfortable Elevator Moment was fully used too.
  • Smokin' Aces references this. One of the main characters who is dressed as a hooker is waiting for an elevator. When the doors open, three heavily armed half-naked skinheads are struggling into their clothes.
    Georgia: ... I'm Going down.
    Tremor: I'll Bet you are!
  • Star Trek
    • Star Trek (2009): Seeing Spock is Not So Stoic after the destruction of Vulcan, Uhura runs after Spock when he enters the turbolift, stopping it mid-decks and kissing him.
    • Naturally the Sex Trek porn parodies got into the act. Turns out those handles that Captain Kirk would turn to make the turbolift go make good handholds when you're Wall Banging a Bridge Bunny.
  • What's New Pussycat? Capucine and Peter O'Toole's characters agree the proper setting is essential, then promptly make use of an elevator. In the throes of ecstasy, he assures her it's perfectly safe, so long as the combined weight of the two people does not exceed 1400 pounds.
  • Gloria has a brief flashback to her and Max having sex in an elevator in What's the Worst That Could Happen?.
  • William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet with Leonardo DiCaprio did the kissing variant, during the ball scene where they meet.
  • Played for laughs (along with everything else) in Wrongfully Accused. A lady pushes Ryan Harrison up against the wall of the elevator and then drops down off the bottom of the camera frame, and he starts writhing and moaning. Then the camera pans down to show her tying his shoe.
  • At the end of the Marilyn Monroe 1960 movie Lets Make Love, the character played by Yves Montand starts making out with Marilyn's character in an elevator; he opens her dress, exposing her black lace brassiere, and starts to kiss her passionately, fading to a Sexy Discretion Shot at the very end with the clear implication that they're about to have sex then and there.
  • Given the overly polite dress and demeanor of Japanese elevator girls it's often combined with Naughty by Night in Japanese porn; Going Up: I'm an Elevator Girl! is one example.

  • In The Otherworld, Hope starts making out in an elevator with her ex-boyfriend Karl, an attractive conman who often seduces wealthy women just to steal their jewelry. When the elevator reaches her floor:
    Hope: That "stop" button looks pretty good.
    Karl: Unfortunately, if it stops for more than a couple of minutes, we'll be rescued by the building super.
    Hope: Had some experience with that, have you?
    Karl: On a job.
    Hope: That's what I meant. Seducing the marks in an elevator. How declasse.
  • Thirteen Hours spends the first half of the book about two women who are trapped in an elevator for thirteen hours. A steamy lesbian erotica, they realise a little late that the elevator has a camera, though cover it with whipped cream before they go all the way. Fortunately one of them is on good terms with the maintenance guy who gives it to her...for $50 and a sandwich.
  • The Worst-Case Scenario Survival Handbook: Dating and Sex talks about how to have sex in an elevator (among other places).
    1. Find a building with an older elevator.
    2. Alternatively, look for a freight elevator with padding on the walls.
    3. Look for a camera.
    4. Stop the elevator between floors.
    5. Release the stop button or flip the switch to run when you are ready to leave.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In Boston Legal, this happens several times in the Boston courthouse elevator. The emergency stop button is often the provocation.
  • Breakout Kings: Shea and his girlfriend Vanessa hook up in the elevator in the Kings' base in "One for the Money".
  • The fifth season premiere of Castle closes with Castle and Beckett entering the precinct elevator. Just as the doors close, Castle gasps and glares at Beckett, who just smirks. Although we don't see her hands move, it is clear that she goosed him in the elevator.
  • In an episode of the remake (reboot maybe, not sure what it actually counts) of the series Cupid, this trope is invoked by a) giving the potential couple a gift basket before they get on the elevator, and b) having the security guard stop the elevator for several hours.
  • Desperate Housewives: In "God, That's Good", a blackout hits Fairview. Gaby and mayoral candidate Victor Lang end up being stuck in a hotel elevator. While waiting for power to be restored, she spontaneously decides to have sex with Victor. This is caught on the elevator's surveillance camera when the power comes back on, and a member of the hotel staff tries to use stills from the footage to blackmail Victor for $50,000. Thanks to the police coming upon Gaby fighting with the blackmailer as he's trying to deliver the photos to Victor's house, and the police chief being the current mayor's brother-in-law, the photos make their way to the press and cause a major scandal that damages Victor's reputation, at least until Gaby comes forward at a press conference and claims that the sex was in response to him asking to marry her.
    Firefighter: [noticing Gaby's bra sticking out of Victor's pants pocket] Must've gotten pretty hot in there.
    Gaby: You have no idea.
  • In Farscape, during the pre-miniseries finale, Aeryn and John use this as their cover to investigate the Scarran supply of crystherium at the bottom of the elevator. The scene IN the elevator was when Crichton uses the private moment to teach Aeryn how to dance.
  • One episode of Frasier has Frasier and his boss trapped in his building's service elevator after agreeing they wouldn't pursue a relationship. The elevator also contains all the possessions of one of the other tenants, a romance author, including a music box that plays romantic music, poster-sized versions of her book covers, musk oil and a double bed. They just about manage to resist temptation.
  • There was a period on General Hospital where this happens all the time, to the point where anytime uninterested people are in the same elevator, they give each other odd looks.
  • The Good Wife: At the end of the season 2 finale, Will and Alicia almost casually decide to resolve their WTWT and take a room at a hotel. The ride to the presidential suite starts off as an Uncomfortable Elevator Moment and gradually turns into this with every stop.
  • Grey's Anatomy:
    • Surprisingly, Meredith Grey only got to first base in the elevator. But it became such a Running Joke that the creators felt the need to awkwardly insert an elevator gag into the pilot of Private Practice.
    • Played with in a later episode, when Meredith and Derek are trying for a baby. Their conversation makes it appear like they're about to have a quickie somewhere in the hospital. The usual place for such things (the on-call room) is busy (someone else is already there for similar reasons), so they go to an elevator. Derek presses the "stop" button, turns Meredith around, saying he needs only a minute, drops her pants... and injects her with a fertility drug.
  • Herman's Head. Handsome Lech Jay and his female counterpart Heddy have this trope very much on their minds when they're stuck in an elevator together. First, they talk about how much they despise each other and so they're not going to do it, then they start boasting of their varied sexual experiences, then they start making out passionately. Of course, that's the moment when the firefighters break in.
  • Invoked in How I Met Your Mother when Barney tries to get his divorced parents back together by trapping them in an elevator, hoping this trope will ensue.
  • On Judging Amy, Kyle and Lily repeatedly have sex in the hospital's elevator, to the annoyance of their co-workers.
  • In an episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Munch and Fin are watching security tapes of an elevator. When the camera cuts to them, one of them remarks "this is the tenth couple making out in the elevator."
  • Also Lois and Clark in the 4th season Lois & Clark episode "Brutal Youth".
  • The Mad About You episode "Season Opener" had Paul and Jamie taking advantage of Viagra in the Empire State's lift.
  • A discreet version occurs in "Hijack" when Doyle's Girl of the Week tempts him up to her apartment when he's supposed to be on standby.
    Deborah: [pulling him into the elevator] Come on up. At least to the top of the shaft.
  • Red Dwarf: In "Back in the Red: Part II", Lister discovers he has the sexual magnetism virus on his fingers when it causes Kochanski to go crazy with lust and attempt to ravish him in the elevator. The effect wears off partway through, leaving Kochanski mortified.
  • Saturday Night Live has a filmed piece in which five people get stuck in an elevator, with two of them (Bowen Yang and episode host Ayo Edebiri) insisting upon hooking up to cope with their claustrophobia, spiraling into a plan to repopulate inside the elevator. The rest of the group gets so caught up in planning their roles in this new society, they ignore the firefighters have already arrived. It ends with everyone moving to this new society, dubbed "Elevator Town," where the only law is, "You gotta love hookin' up!"
  • Sex/Life:
    • One of Billie and Brad's past encounters is shown to have been during an elevator trip to meet his family.
    • Cooper fingers Francesca in the elevator after they get together in Season 2 following him separating from Billie.
  • Smallville:
    • Lois and Clark in the 9th season episode "Charade".
      Lois: Sometimes I swear you have more than two hands.
    • Clark and Maxima attempted to have sex in an elevator in the 8th season episode "Instinct", but they are interrupted when the doors open and Lois sees them. She was pissed.
    • An "innocent" one in Bound: Chloe pushes Clark up a wall and he leans in to kiss her, only to be quickly interrupted, much to the frustration of fans. Doesn't stop many Fan Fic writers from extending this into sex in the elevator, though. With help from things like the emergency stop button.
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine:
    • In one of the last episodes, after some major flirtation, Bashir and Ezri end up making out in the turbolift on the way to Ops. When they get there (and they keep kissing) a bemused Worf sends them back down rather than interrupt them.
    • An interesting variation in an episode from season one when Lwaxana Troi is visiting the station and develops a crush on Odo. Her typically relentless pursuit of him leads to them being in the turbolift together when the station happens to lose power, trapping them for hours and hours. Odo's unique physiology means that he needs to return to his natural liquid form while they are trapped. At this point in his character arc, Odo is deeply embarrassed and private about such matters, so to make it easier for him, Luwuxana embarrasses herself, exposing her own private side by removing her wig. When they are finally rescued, she downplays the incident, saying only that Odo was a perfect gentleman who kept her safe and calm. So, while nothing sexual or overtly romantic occurs, and Odo never quite reciprocates her romantic feelings, the two become good friends as a result of the experience. Much later in the series, when they pretend to get married as part of a custody dispute, Odo refers back to these events in his heartwarming vow, citing it as the first time he ever felt accepted for who and what he really is.
  • Star Trek: Voyager. The episode "Elogium" opens with Chakotay walking into a turbolift and catching two Voyager crew making out. So he goes to Captain Janeway to discuss her views on crew fraternization.
  • Used in an episode of the French version of the Sitcom Un gars, une fille, where the title couple is stuck in an elevator. Neither really wants to do it (or so they say), but they still start taking off their clothes and making out in hope of invoking Murphy's Law — that is, that they should get rescued as soon as they try going down in the elevator. It works.
  • In a Veronica Mars episode, Veronica's classmate Madison Sinclair and Sheriff Don Lamb are filmed in a passionate embrace in a hotel elevator. Keith and Cliff proceed to turn it into a hilarious blackmail campaign flyer with the slogan "18 — It's Legal! Re-Elect Don Lamb".

  • Used for at least one photo set in Penthouse magazine.
  • The scenario of sex in an elevator (with a voyeuristic security guard watching via closed-circuit cameras) is one of the sequences in Mitchel Gray's 1990 photo book Lingerie Fantasies.

  • "Love in an Elevator" by Aerosmith.
  • "Heaven on the 7th Floor" by Paul Nicholas.
  • German band Die Prinzen's "Liebe im Fahrstuhl" ("Love in the elevator") is all about this.
  • Ed Sheeran's "You Need Me, I Don't Need You" uses this for a Badass Boast:
    They say I'm up and coming like I'm fucking in an elevator

    Music Videos 
  • The video clip for the French song "En Apesanteur" by Calogero features a couple making out during an elevator ride. A very lengthy elevator ride.
  • Being an ode to public sex, the music video for George Michael's "Outside" features this.

  • Aerosmith, fittingly enough, implies this at the start of "Love in an Elevator". A woman enters an elevator that Steven Tyler's already in, with the two staring at each other briefly before she presses a button.

    Video Games 

    Visual Novels 
  • Parodied in a section of Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors when the main character and the female lead have to take a down lift together, but the lower ship decks are flooded. June is worried about drowning down there — but a dialogue option you can choose makes the main character think she's worried about being in a small lift alone with a boy. Cue hilarious dialogue with the main character getting scared about dying of asphyxiation after the first time.
    Was... was that really how it happened? It occurred to Junpei that perhaps that was how it worked... Perhaps he had been mistaken all these years. Had he misunderstood life so gravely? The thought terrified him.
  • Under the Moon is a 18+ otome game which makes the leap from Uncomfortable Elevator Moment to this trope. It's probably the game's most infamous sex scene.

    Web Animation 
  • The trope is called by name in episode 4 of the semi-interactive Flash cartoon 3|Way. Choosing the elevator path leads to a screen displaying prominently "GOING DOWN"... just before the S.L.U.T.s and Lady Dom (the three heroines and the hostage they've just freed, respectively) use the reprieve for some lesbian sex.

  • Joel & Michelle get intimate with each other in an elevator for a brief moment in a strip from Nineteen-Ninety-Something.
  • Foxes in Love: According to one comic, Blue Fox doesn't do public displays of affection... but elevators don't count as public to him.
  • Nick and Charisma continue their quite-resolved sexual tension in an elevator in Penny and Aggie.
  • Subverted in Schlock Mercenary, where the chaplain gets trapped in an elevator for hours with the improbably-proportioned doctor who used to be an exotic dancer. They spend the next several hours telling each other their life's stories. Remember, kids, there are very good reasons not to take a vow of chastity, and this is one! Fortunately, it's a limited vow. The two of them eventually get engaged.
  • Spoofed in the strip "Elevator Action" of Virtual Shackles, in which the elevator repairmen give the characters a few minutes to finish, not realizing that they're actually playing video games.
  • In Skin Horse, Sweetheart tells Dr Lee that they've had four blackouts caused by power surges, three times in the night, and once when Lee and Nick were in the elevator. An embarassed Lee immediately realises that Nick's tranceiver is causing the power surges due to stimulus. Sweetheart takes a second to think about this, then says "We use that elevator!"

    Web Videos 
  • A Gag Reel for Star Trek Continues has the turbolift doors opening to reveal a man and two women making out.
  • In Sam & Mickey's The Real Housewives of Toys 'R' Us Episode 2, Barbie admits that she and Ken did this while trapped in a broken-down elevator for 10 minutes.