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Series / Trapped! (Game Show)

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This is not a fairytale...
"Only one will escape and the rest [Evil Laugh] you're trapped!"
The final line of the show's theme song in the first three series.

Trapped was a British children's game show aired on CBBC for 4 series from 2007-2010. The show's premise was more or less like a mini horror movie each episode: a man known only as the Caretaker (Simon Greenall) was tricked into getting trapped in the tower the show is set in by the Voice (Eve Karpf in Series 1; Faith Brown in Series 2-4) when trying to find a place to spend the night. To earn his freedom, the Caretaker must trap "unfortunates" (preteen contestants) until the Voice decides that enough unfortunates have been trapped to allow him to go free.

The gameplay is simple: 6 unfortunates compete in a series of challenges to move to the next floor down (starting at floor 6 and going down to 2). The challenges are demonstrated by a character named Wiley Sneak (Olly Pike) who was an unfortunate trapped in the tower a hundred years prior to the start of the show. The only problem is that one unfortunate is selected as saboteur by the Voice to try to make the team fail the challenge without getting caught. If the team passes the challenge, the saboteur is trappednote  and left behind on that floor while the others move on. If the team fails, whoever gets the most votes as to who everyone thought the saboteur was (regardless of whether they guess right or not) gets trapped instead. If the votes were tied in the event of a loss, the unfortunates who had tied votes had to draw straws to determine the outcome (the one who drew the short straw being the one who was trapped). This continues until the second floor, in which the final two unfortunates compete in a trivia round in which they must answer questions about the previous challenges. Whoever gets the most questions right wins "the Key of Freedom" and is the only one of the group allowed to escape, leaving the runner up trapped.

The 4th series had a slight Retool into Trapped: Ever After in which the challenges were changed to be loosely fairy tale themed with every challenge from the 3 previous series replaced with new ones, some of which were Suspiciously Similar Substitutes. The gameplay from the first 3 series remained the same though (save for the Fight For Freedom).

An online game on the CBBC website was also created around the time the show aired but with the show's cancellation, it is no longer available.

Unfortunates, this is Trope Finder. To pass, you must collect as many tropes as possible. Let the challenge!

  • Alliterative Name: Some of the challenges (Toxic Treats, Septic Sewers, and Botherer Blocks just to name a few). There's also the Fight For Freedom, the final challenge of each episode.
  • Any Last Words?: The Voice asks this of most of the unfortunates who get trapped in the 4th series.
  • Blatant Lies: Most of the facts that the Caretaker gives about the unfortunates when introducing them, though considering the fact that he has been stuck in the tower for an unknown amount of time, it's understandable that he is making things up as he goes along.
  • Book Ends: Unintentionally; the first episode of the first series of Trapped had an unfortunate named Daisy be trapped first. The first episode of the final series had an unfortunate named Daisy be the one to escape.
  • Catchphrase:
    • The Voice: "(Contestant), do not react. You are the Saboteur.", "Let the challenge begin... NOW!", "You have failed, miserably!"
    • The Caretaker: "It's time to pick the Saboteur!"
  • Consolation Prize: According to at least one unfortunate who commented on an upload of an episode, the "trapped" unfortunates got a T-shirt with the show's logo on it and some kind of certificate(?) that said which floor they had gotten to as parting gifts.
  • Covered in Gunge: Downplayed in the floor 4 challenge Snake Attack in which the unfortunate sticking their hand in the holes in the wall gets said hand covered in ink when they choose wrongly. This also happened in the similar challenge Exploding Toad in the Hole.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: In Series 1, Episode 6, Tom tells the Voice to get lost after being trapped first, much to the surprise of the Caretaker:
    The Caretaker: Did he just say "get lost"?
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: The theme song of the show is performed by the Voice although it's more of a poem since the lyrics aren't quite sung (though music does play while the words are spoken). It's also an Expository Theme Tune explaining how the unfortunates (supposedly) make their way to the tower to participate in the challenges and what they have to do to attempt to be the only one who escapes. The theme song was not used in the final series.
  • Dwindling Party: This is to be expected considering the nature of the show.
  • Elevator Floor Announcement: Subverted, since the unfortunates "jump down" to each floor but the Voice will always announce the floor number and the challenge on it.
  • Elimination Catchphrase : "Poor unfortunate (contestant). You're Trapped!" The last series included the "Ever After" part.
  • Epic Fail: Anytime a saboteur fails to sabotage a challenge and gets detected.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": The Voice and the Caretaker.
  • Evil Laugh: Every time the Voice announces "Poor Unfortunate... you're trapped!", she follows it up with one of these.
  • For the Evulz:
    • There doesn't seem to be any reason the Voice traps people in the tower other than just because she can. She may also enjoy the thrill of the chaos in the discord of turning Unfortunates against one another (when they successfully sabotage the challenge and get away with it though). Her role in selecting saboteurs on each floor and guiding them to successfully cause their team to fail the challenge may directly contribute to that.
    • Millicent from Millicent and the Moths. She turns on the lights so she can catch moths to rip off their wings. All with a cheerful smile on her face.
  • Gender-Equal Ensemble: Played straight in almost all of the episodes (3 boys and 3 girls as the unfortunates); the only exception was series 3, episode 10 which had 4 boys and 2 girls competing against each other.
  • Get Out!: To the winning unfortunate: "Take the key and leave the tower, before I change my mind."
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Any time someone who was saboteur on a previous floor gets trapped on a later floor (rightly or wrongly) could count as this.
  • Older Than They Look: Wiley Sneak looks like a teenager but is actually much older due to having been trapped for about a century.
  • One-Steve Limit: Averted as many different unfortunates across the episodes share the same first name. Occasionally 2 unfortunates with the same first name appear in the same episode and one has to go by a nickname to avoid confusion such as Abby and Abigail in a 4th series episode.
  • Rule of Three:
    • In the opening sequence, it is shown that saying Wiley Sneak's name 3 times apparently causes kids to be transported to a boat that takes them to the tower.
    • Many challenges have the unfortunates try to find 3 "good" things to pass; if they find three "bad" things, they fail.
  • Social Deduction Game: In every round the contestants are set a task, but a player is secretly nominated to be a saboteur who must try and stop them finishing the task without the others realising what they're doing. If the players complete the task, the saboteur is removed from the game, but if the players fail, they vote on who they think the saboteur was and the player with the most votes is eliminated instead.
  • Stupid Evil: The floor 6 challenge Poisoned Harvest had a few of its saboteurs put more than the required number of purple berries in the baskets to contaminate them despite there being no point in doing so.
  • Theme Naming: Most of the challenges in the 4th series have names that make them sound like the titles of in-universe stories to go with the fairy tale theme (e.g. The Wolf and the Nut or Millicent and the Moths).
  • Toilet Humor: The series 1 challenge Toxic Treats had a fart sound effect play whenever a bad present was opened. There was also a challenge in series 2 and 3 called Septic Sewers in which unfortunates had to plug a drain to stop "gas" from escaping.
  • Villain Protagonist: The Saboteurs are effectively this, as each challenge is designed with their role in mind, rather than whether the team simply wins or loses. The viewers watch through their perspective as the Voice instructs them.
    • The Caretaker definitely counts, as the host and character we spend the most time with.
  • Voted Off the Island: How eliminations are determined if the team fails a challenge.
  • Win to Exit: The whole point of the show.

Poor unfortunate troperů You're TRAPPED!