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Land in the Saddle

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A popular exit for the swashbuckling or Western hero: leap down off the roof, wall or balcony you're on — or out of a window — and land in the saddle of your waiting Cool Horse as onlookers wince in sympathy.

Can be spoofed by including one or more of the things that could go wrong: the rider lands facing the wrong way, the horse is spooked, the horse is injured by the impact with the rider, the rider is injured by the impact with the horse (ouch), the rider misses the horse entirely, ...

An adventurer in a modern setting might attempt the same trick with a car. If he's really planning ahead, it will be a car without a roof.

A subtrope of No Escape but Down. Not to be confused with Falling into the Cockpit or Born in the Saddle.

Definitely not Truth in Television. Doing this in real life will either cause you or the horse serious injury, and doing it from high enough can kill the horse outright by breaking its back and collapsing its lungs.


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    Comic Books 
  • Lucky Luke has Lucky leaping onto his horse so often that Jolly Jumper has expressed surprise if Luke exits a building through the door. Jolly is sometimes seen complaining about how Luke gets to make merry in the saloon, and his horse must wait outside under the window.
    • There are also occasional subversions to keep things interesting. In one instance, Luke throws himself out the wrong window, leading to his escaping while Jolly Jumper laughs at him. In another, he realizes the horse he's landed on is not Jolly Jumper, who explains that as he didn't know which window Luke would jump from, he put a horse under each window to be sure.

    Film - Animated 
  • Tangled takes it up to eleven, with Flynn catapulted over a high wall and landing the saddle of the horse waiting on the other side. Thanks to Rule of Cool, nobody gets hurt.
    Flynn: "Knees apart?"
  • During the Action Prologue in Toy Story 3, Woody falls off the train but conveniently lands on Jessie's horse Bulls-Eye, so he and Jessie can continue chasing after the train.

    Film - Live-Action 

  • Reconstructed in Wax and Wayne. New lawman Wax suggests doing this to escape from a gang, but the more experienced Lessie shoots him down by asking how a full-grown man could expect to jump on top of a horse and not break its back. Wax can pull this off because of his Metalborn powers; he could either use his Skimmer abilities to reduce his weight and drop with little impact, or his Steelpushing power on the horseshoes. Since Wax's telekinetic Pushes move him away from metal if it weighs more than him (or is anchored to something that does), he could gently land by Pushing against gravity, without hurting the horse, by sending his weight into the ground through the horseshoes. Alas, the horse already ran off at first sign of gunfire.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Early in Casanova, Casanova completely misses the waiting horse while escaping from a disgruntled husband.
  • In the Doctor Who serial "The Masque of Mandragora", the Doctor jumps from the execution platform onto one of the guards' horses, shoves that guard out of the saddle, and takes off galloping.
  • The Goodies: In "Animals", Graeme leaps out of the window of the farmhouse and lands in the saddle of his horse, who is actually a man (It Makes Sense in Context), before galloping off.
  • Knight Rider: Car version, of course. Michael calls to KITT, KITT comes, and often he leaps straight into or onto KITT. At least once, KITT elevated the driver's seat so Michael would have something to aim for and fall onto.

    Video Games 
  • The player can pull off this move in Assassin's Creed.
  • Desperados requires the team to pull this off while breaking Sanchez out of jail.
  • In Final Fantasy VI, when Edgar, Locke and Terra escape from Kefka, there's a cutscene where they ride away.
  • Hanzo's trait in Heroes of the Storm allows him to jump over terrain and land on the far side. Selecting his Mounted Archery talent will summon his mount beneath him when he lands.
  • If you aim just right, you can land on your horse from a second story jump in Red Dead Redemption.
  • Likewise, it's possible to jump from a high platform in Star Wars: Battlefront and land directly in the seat of a speeder bike. You of course take no damage.

    Western Animation 
  • The Legend of Zelda (1989): In the episode, "The White Knight", Link jumps down from his tower window and bounces/backflips off a tent canopy below before landing in his horse's saddle. The horse is startled and tries to throw him off, but he stays on and calms her down.
  • Spoofed in The Scarlet Pumpernickel, where Daffy Duck misses the horse, causing him to muse that "this never happens to Errol Flynn". In fact, he misses twice and on the third try parachutes down: "Here's a wrinkle Errol never thought of!"
  • In Tex Avery's Drag-A-Long Droopy, the cowboy Wolf chasing Droopy tries to jump onto his horse and misses. He runs back up to the balcony he jumped from, tries again— and misses. Eventually he moves the horse to the place where he keeps landing and tries again, only to land where the horse originally was. So he gives up and hails a taxi instead.
  • Once an Episode (minimum) in Thundarr the Barbarian. In one early episode, he does it from the top floor of a ruined skyscraper without injury.