In fantasy and science fiction works, teleportation (in some sort of form) frequently appears as a common form of travel. Often, the person teleporting will trigger the teleportation by spinning in place. Alternatively, the entry into teleportation may not involve rotation, but the actual travel spins the traveler.
While a reason may sometimes be given for the spinning, it often occurs primarily because it looks (or sounds) cool or because spinning signals to the viewer that something is going to happen, thus avoiding catching the viewer off guard.
This is a sub-trope of Spectacular Spinning.
If the teleportation device itself spins (as opposed to the people spinning within the device), it's When Things Spin, Science Happens. The tropes are similar in that in both cases, the spinning occurs either to invoke Rule of Cool or to avoid confusing the audience.
Note that this trope can apply to all forms of magical transportation; teleportation is just its most common form.
- Dungeon Keeper Ami: Imp teleportation is cast by doing a somersault in the air.
- In The Sword in the Stone, Merlin spins as he magically arrives places.
- In Harry Potter:
- Apparition is triggered by spinning in place. Travel by Floo sends the traveler spinning to their destination. In the movie, transit by Portkey is depicted with the passengers whirling around the Portkey.
- The Floor powder example is parodied in A Very Potter Musical: using Floo powder involves the characters spinning in place and shouting "Floo powder power! Floo powder power!" while all lights go dark except random flashing colors.
- Merlin in The Once and Future King always spins around before he disappears in a cloud of smoke.
- In Robert Sheckley's Prospector's Special, portals look like tiny whirlwinds.
- In the German pulp series Professor Zamorra, the demon lord Asmodis traditionally teleports by invoking the spell and spinning in place, pulling any 'passengers' he may have along with him. This seems to be mainly a personal quirk since other teleportation techniques and technologies in the series generally don't require this (though movement in general is a necessary component for at least some, making being tied up tightly enough still an issue for the would-be teleporter).
- In the first game, the teleport spell is executed by having the character move around while accelerating rapidly before zooming off; because colliding with anything stops the teleport, the better the player is at moving in a small circle, the more places he can teleport from. Mother 2/Earthbound had two teleport spells, one of which worked the same as the first game and the other automatically making the party move in a tight spiral for much easier use.
- Also in Earthbound, both the Star Master and Camera Man enter/exit the screen by spinning.
- Super Mario Bros.
- In Dead or Alive, Kasumi has this as one of her winning animations, accompanied with some pretty Cherry Blossoms.
- Several of the earlier Final Fantasy games show teleportation this way.
- Mortal Kombat
- Jade has a move in Deception and Armageddon called Vanishing Winds where she spins around a cloud of green smoke and reappears behind her opponent. Both Kitana and Khameleon borrow this move in Armageddon.
- In Mortal Kombat 9, Rain's intro pose actually inverts this. A wind storm blows in, with Rain's figure quickly forming out of it and gearing up for battle.
- The Legend of Zelda:
- Tekken's Yoshimitsu possesses a special in his Indian mediation stance allowing him to spin so fast (while sitting down) that he instantly warps on the other side of his opponent.
- In Bomberman Tournament, each Karabon has its own special ability that can help Bomberman when exploring (some are passive, others need to be activated manually). Pommy (your first ally and a Captain Ersatz of Kirby and Pikachu) has the ability to transport Bomberman to any (major) town he's previously visited. Using this power causes Bomberman to spin rapidly before he's launched into the sky and lands in his intended destination.
- This is how I. M. Meen escapes after you defeat him.
- Parodied in Valkyrie Profile: Covenant of the Plume's Bonus Dungeon, where one of your characters starts spinning rapidly out of excitement and flies off. Some NPCs tell him to wait for them and follow him in a similar manner, except for the last one, who just asks The Hero if he excepted him to fly off spinning and walks away.
- BoxxyQuest: The Shifted Spires: The teleporter in Svetlana's tower has Catie spin in a circle before teleporting in a beam of light.
- In Code Lyoko, the teens rotate in the scanners before being transported to Lyoko.
- In the Regular Show episode "Dizzy", when the characters spin around until they fall over, they are sent to a bizarre otherworld.
- The Tasmanian Devil from Looney Tunes is probably the Trope Codifier for non-teleportation methods, spinning itself into a whirlwind to travel.
- Peter of Family Guy tried to travel back in time by spinning on the spot. He ended up getting dizzy and breaking his father-in-law's glass table.
- In Codename: Kids Next Door, the Toiletnator spins when he makes an exit... but that's because he's "flushing himself" down a toilet.