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Escape the Night is a Reality Show on YouTube Premium by Joey Graceffa, who also stars as the host, an unfortunate Savant who invites a number of guests to an estate trapped in the past, with the guests having to play specific characters related to that era. The estate is home to an evil entity that challenges the guests to survive its Deadly Game.

The show uses escape room puzzles for most of its challenges, and is unique in that Joey, the host, also solves the puzzles along with the guests. At the end of each episode, the guests vote for two of their own to go into "death challenges," in which the loser dies. This repeats until one or more guests survive at the end of the season, along with Joey... maybe.

The show first premiered on June 22, 2016, and is currently has four seasons. Each season premieres in late June or early July, depending on when VidCon is held each year, before continuing throughout the summer, ending around mid-August. With each season, the first episode is made available for free on YouTube proper; however, the remaining episodes are restricted to Premium. As of 2020, all the episodes were made free due to the pandemic.

A Kickstarter campaign to fund Escape The Night Board Game was held in 2020 and raised $573,408.

Escape the Night provides examples of:

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    The series as a whole 
  • Aerith and Bob: From the Dark Army general Arlyn (S2), the Confederate general Cash (S2), SAE members Jael and Ryu (S3); to Creepy Housekeeper Sarah (S1), WW1 soldier Colin (S1), Vampire Princess Alison (S2), The-Man-With-No-Name Benjamin (S3) and Carnival Master Nicholas (S3).
  • Anachronism Stew: Zigzagged.
    • Most non-YouTubers have names fitting to their era, only that there's a few...odd...ones that stand out for their time period. For example, in Season 2, Alison was a popular name in the Middle Ages and the late 20th century, not the Victorian Era, whereas 'Alice' would be more appropriate for the era. Meanwhile, in the same season, Riley was a ''masculine'' name in the 19th century, but then she was born in at least the 18th century...
    • Season 4 Episode 4 is set in Imperial China, but there are several glaring historical inaccuracies in the episode in relation to Chinese history. Most notably, the male rebel wears a Manchu plait, which would not be a commonplace hairstyle until the mid-to-late Qing Dynasty.
  • Antagonist Title: Some of the episodes, mainly across Seasons 2 and 3 thus far.
  • Anyone Can Die: It's a elimination-based reality competition, so yes, almost everyone is up for grabs....
  • Ancient Evil: The settings are always home to a malevolent entity that kills its guests.
  • Back from the Dead:
    • Happens a few times throughout Seasons 2 and 3: Joey in Season 2 Episode 10, MatPat in Season 3 Episode 7, Jael and Ryu in Season 3 Episode 10.
    • The Automaton Bride in Season 2 Episode 7 may also count.
    • Taken to a whole other level when Season 4 was announced to be an All-Stars Season, and eight of the fallen returned to battle for a second chance at life... though most turn out to be a case of Back for the Dead.
  • The Big Guy: Oli, DeStorm Jesse, Alex, MatPat and Manny are the most notable ones.
  • Black-and-Grey Morality: The Evil is, as stated, evil, but the so-called good are a Well-Intentioned Extremist faction at best and does not hesitate to sacrifice people who were involuntarily involved in the war.
  • Black Guy Dies First:
    • Averted, because the token Black characters die in Episode 4 in their respective seasons — GloZell, Season 1; DeStorm, Seasons 2 and 4; Teala, Season 3, as opposed to the first or second episode, when the first YouTuber death occurs.
    • Also discussed briefly twice: Jesse makes a joke in Season 2 Episode 1 that DeStorm was probably dying first, and Teala makes a comment about Black characters dying first behind the scenes in Season 3.
  • Bury Your Gays: Played with... a lot, but mostly averted because none of the YouTubers are killed off because of their sexuality, as far as we know.
    • Justified for Shane, because he's a member of the Society Against Evil, and He Knows Too Much.
    • Downplayed for the LGBT guest survivors, because their friends are dead and they are likely traumatized for life... but they're still alive. This category includes Eva, Tyler, Andrea R, Nikita, and Bretman.
    • Subverted for Joey. He came Back from the Dead.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The Crown of Oblivion from Season 2 was used to power the portal to Purgatory in Season 4.
  • Confession Cam: As traditional for reality/scripted TV hybrids (see; Murder In Small Town X, The Murder Game, Whodunnit? (2013)) it makes sense. On the other hand, one has to wonder when the guests had the chance to sit down...
    • It's later confirmed that those scenes represent the YouTubers' in-universe thought processes as it actually happens in that moment, and as such, are not really to be considered as a actual thing in "canon".
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: Several YouTubers died in ways which can be classified as such.
  • Establishing Character Moment: The whole invitation segment serves as this for a few of the guests.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Sometimes applies to the episode titles.
    • In Season 1 Episode 10, there was, indeed, a "Betrayal at the House on the Hill".
    • Season 1 Episodes 4, 7 and 9 each feature "Mannequins", "Mermaid" ("Tails"), and "Wicked Hallucinations", respectively.
      • In the same way, Season 2 Episode 7 features an "Automaton Love Story", the following episode has the "Slaughter" under the "Full Moon"; "the Clowns Here" [in Everlock] indeed "Kill" in Episodes 1 and 2 of Season 3, while Season 3 Episode 7 mainly takes place within the grounds of a "Funhouse", etc.
    • S1E02, S1E06, S2E03, S2E09, S3E07 all have titles featuring the premise and/or setting of the death challenge of the episode.
    • After the original Season 4 titles were leaked, the new titles made for the episodes were quite straightforward about what happens in the episode, e.g. Episode 5, "Dark Magic and a Twisted Fate", in which curses and a cruel Plot Twist are involved in the episode.
  • Face Death with Dignity: DeStorm in Season 2 Episode 4, then eventually his ex-Arch-Enemy Alex in Season 4 Episode 8.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: Especially in Season 2. Spread across the first three seasons are: demons, vampires, werewolves, gods and goddesses, steampunk, evil alternate dimensions, clowns, mermaids, witches, etc.
  • Find the Cure!:
    • The first challenge of the entire show is to find the antidote to save Shane's life after he is poisoned. They don't make it in time.
    • Season 1 Episode 7's death challenge goes similarly, as the two participants are poisoned and have to race to solve a series of puzzles to retrieve the antidote, but will down more poison if their puzzle's answer is incorrect.
    • A similar premise returns in Season 3 when one of the group was bitten by the Snake Woman and a part of the group had to make the antidote to the venom.
  • Forever War: It was first revealed in Season 1 Episode 1 that the Society Against Evil had been fighting against the Evil for centuries. Season 3 Episode 9 officially states that it's an ongoing war.
  • Gratuitous Japanese: Not the language, no, but there are plenty of Japanese-based characters - Jorogumo, Kira and Haruko; Katsumi; Ryu; etc.
  • Group Hug: Happens to the winning group in group challenges (the losing one goes up on the chopping block), then in the Season 3 finale too.
    • Season 2 Episode 4: After the Capture the Flag game between the Dark Army and the Confederates.
    • Season 3 Episode 4: Once Team Badass Bitch completes their set of challenges.
  • History Repeats:
    • In Episode 9 of both Seasons 1 and 2, Joey fails to save the YouTuber he was partnered with, resulting in their death.
    • In Season 1 Episode 6, Matt had the choice between committing suicide or killing Sierra in the exorcism death challenge. In Season 3 Episode 9, Nikita had to make the same choice in another death challenge, between herself and Manny. Both times, both chose to save themselves, although the former did not do it on purpose.
    • In Season 1 Episode 4, GloZell antagonizes Joey. In Season 3 Episodes 5 and 6, Colleen does the same, even though she showed remorse in the end. Guess who Joey decides to betray both times?
    • In Season 1 Episode 4 and Season 2 Episode 6, Joey is voted into betrayal challenges.
    • Season 2 Episode 4 and Season 3 Episode 9 mirror each other when a member of the group volunteers to become temporarily Brainwashed and Crazy to further the group's goals to reach the artifacts.
    • In Episode 8 of all four seasons so far, the one dying (Tim, Alison, Rosanna and Alex) accepted their death prior to it occurring.
    • Episode 9 of both Seasons 2 and 3 involve a demonic creature: the Devourer for the former, the demon dog for the latter.
    • In Episode 10 of both Seasons 2 and 3, the final three face off against the Mooks, while trying to complete their mission. If one of them gets captured, they have five minutes to save them. Season 4 continues this, but the time limit dropped to two minutes only.
    • In Episode 4 of both Seasons 2 and 4, Alex and DeStorm face off against each other, and DeStorm dies. The latter part is lampshaded by Tana.
      Tana: History's repeating itself.
    • Season 4 in a nutshell. The returning guests are not thrilled at the idea of having to go through this thing again, while Joey is exasperated and resigned at having to go through this a fourth time.
    • On a lighter note, both Seasons 3 and 4 feature a Camp Gay guy (Joey and Bretman, respectively) having to play straight.
    • Also, in Seasons 2 and 4, respectively, Tyler and Ro get stuck in a booby trap and must be saved in a limited time frame before everyone dies. Both times, they manage not to let the countdown run out just in time.
    • Oddly enough, Episode 8 of Seasons 2, 3 and 4 all feature a death challenge with a racing-based premise.
    • Furthermore, Seasons 2 and 4 both involve the final three luring the Mooks into a trap to be rid of them.
  • A House Divided: Happens every season.
  • Kill the Cutie: Rosanna is all but Loved by All and there have been canonical nods to her being a "cinnamon roll". Naturally, she dies in both her debut season and the All-Stars season.
  • Last Episode, New Character: Arthur's brother in Season 1, Riley in Season 2.
  • One-Steve Limit: Defied. As of Season 3, there have been three characters named Caroline…and three YouTubers whose first names are Matthew. Even before then, there are two YouTubers named Andrea?
  • The Points Mean Nothing: A rare Reality TV Example; a common misconception/criticism with this show is that the "gameplay" is very loose and unconnected, where various deaths arriving from twist's that deviate from the standard "death challenge" formula (notable examples such as Glozell, Tana, Saifya, etc., where they had absolutely no chance to defend themselves or say goodbye) can be seen as blatantly unfair if seen as a regular reality competition, when in reality it is allowed, because unlike a traditional example where there is usually a cash prize for being the last one standing (see Murder In Small Town X, The Murder Game, Whodunnit? (2013), Genre/Story Competitions that follow this example), in this show, the YouTubers are not rewarded with any type of prize for "surviving" to the end of their season. This allows them to not focus on actually "surviving" by strategizing and metagame with no actual threat of losing out on any "real" stake, but rather try to build the best storyline possible for their CHARACTER and roleplay with the situation's provided in each episode. People who treat it as the former tend to be frustrated with this show, as it doesn't fit into their conventions (even when compared to other shows like it, such as the show's listed above), when it was never intended to in the first place.
  • Previously on…: Many episodes begin with a recap describing the previous episode, then leading to a scripted scene introducing the Monster of the Week the guests face in the current episode. Joey narrates in Season 1, Laura Bailey narrates in Season 2, and Matthew Mercer narrates for Season 3.
  • Purgatory and Limbo: The World Between Worlds, as shown in Season 3; and in Season 4, Joey actively ventures into Purgatory to save a handful of his deceased friends.
  • Riddle Me This: Several challenges, death-related or not, take the form of riddles, most notably three of them in the beginning of Season 1 Episode 8. Five also appear in Season 4 Episode 2, plus hieroglyphs. Then once again, three are in the Minotaur's Maze.
  • Rule of Three
    • All Seasons:
    • Season 1:
      • Antidote separated into 3 parts in Episode 1.
      • 3 items needed to perform the seance in Episode 3.
      • 3 steps in the Perverse Games in Episode 4.
      • 3 riddles to solve in the beginning of Episode 8.
      • 3 keys to free Vincent in Episode 9.
      • 3 evil staff members in Episode 10.
    • Season 2:
      • 3 YouTubers captured by Jorogumo and her minions in Episode 3.
      • 3 Leviathan Seals to wreck in Episode 10.
      • 3 Lieutenants killed while destroying the Leviathan Seals, also in Episode 10.
    • Season 3:
      • 3 YouTubers initially captured by the clowns in Episode 1.
      • 3 rooms in the Funhouse in Episode 7.
      • 3 stages in the challenge of that episode.
      • 3 witches in Episode 8.
      • 3 curses to undo in Episode 8.
      • 3 Society Against Evil members sent to defeat the Carnival Master initially in 1978.
      • 3 Life Stones to recover in Episode 10.
      • 3 people are revived using the Lazarus Harp.
    • Season 4 (All Stars):
      • 9 jeweled keys to recover (9=3×3)
      • The medallion used to control the Minotaur was separated into three pieces.
      • 3 riddles to solve in the Minotaur's Maze.
  • Shout-Out:
  • The Smart Guy/The Smart Girl: Eva, Matt Haag, Alex, Liza, Matthew Patrick and Safiya are the most notable ones.
  • Time Travel: So far, the first 3 seasons all involve this.
  • Title Drop:
    • By Joey in the Season 2 trailer.
      Joey: Everyone runs, but who will Escape the Night?
    • Downplayed in Season 3 Episode 7 by Manny.
      Manny: (on Confession Cam) I wish I could just be there with 'em to... escape this freakin' night.
    • Nikita says the title of the show in general on Confession Cam in Season 4 Episode 7... in present continuous tense form, but it still counts…
    • Also downplayed by Colleen in Season 4 Episode 10.
      Colleen: (on Confession Cam) The only way to escape tonight...
  • Token Evil Teammate: Timothy, DeStorm, Jesse and Nikita all have roles that seem to invoke this.
  • Voted Off the Island: Everyone votes on who competes in the death challenge in each episode, or in some cases (Season 1, Episode 3; and Season 3, Episode 6), who needs to die. They write names down on a strip of paper in season one, while picking specially made Tarot Cards for each contestant starting in season 2 onward.
  • You Monster!: People call each other "sick" a lot on this show, especially in Season 1, which can be this trope or You're Insane! depending on the context.

    Season 1 

  • All Men Are Perverts: Inverted in episode 8, when the remaining girls keep commenting on Colin's physique with little regard for anything else (such as the gun he is pointing at them), to the irritation of everyone else.
    • Downplayed an episode earlier; when Lele strips her clothes off to enter the pool to fetch things they need, Matt makes a couple perverted remarks in her direction.
  • Benevolent Boss : Zigzagged with Arthur in the finale. While he verbally abuses Sarah and Marvin in that episode, he also compliments Marvin's gardening abilities.
  • The Big Guy: Oli tends to literal heavy lifting and smashing when it's needed.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Justine was seen after she sabotaged Andrea's rescue, whether or not she actually is, the jury is still out on that one.
  • Blood from the Mouth: Happens to Shane in the first episode, and GloZell in the fourth when they die.
  • Broken Tears: Eva cries after the events of Episode 8 due to entering a death challenge and watching Tim shoot himself.
  • Buried Alive: What happened to Caroline Eastwick in the backstory. It's also Justine's eventual fate in the season.
  • Diesel Punk: Has shades of this; it takes place in the Roaring Twenties and all.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The note that Oli finds at the end of Episode 2 was written by Vincent Wells from Episode 9, who left the note there to warn the guests that Arthur was working with the evil. If you look at the back of the note carefully, you'll see that it's just written on an ink blot card.
  • Christianity is Catholic: Episode 6 involves a lot of things in relation to demons, angels and the Bible. Thank goodness Lele went to Catholic school.
  • Circus of Fear: The setting for a good amount of Episode 5.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Lele.
  • Creepy Basement: Three people were killed in the basement.
  • Creepy Housekeeper: Sarah, the maid, is seen as creepy by a majority of the cast. Arthur, the butler, also applies once it's revealed he's working with the Evil.
  • Deadly Book: The death method of Episode 4, a la Death Note. This is how GloZell is killed.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Matt reaches one at the end of Episode 6 after he accidentally kills Sierra in a Suicidal Sadistic Choice which he didn't realize was one.
  • Dirty Coward: Matt is considered one due to stepping up to enter the death challenge in Episode 6, but after further contemplation, decides to take it back. His descent into a Despair Event Horizon and taking a level in jerkass after the episode causes most of the cast to be sick of him that they unanimously rejoice when he dies.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: Arthur the butler was working for the Ancient Evil.
  • Don't Try This at Home: One at the beginning of Episode 8 due to the Russian Roulette challenge.
  • Dramatic Irony: Justine confesses to the audience in Episode 3 that she has intense claustrophobia, but never confesses this to any of the other contestants. When faced with the prospect of being buried alive, she starts crying hysterically, which results in the rest of the cast suspecting her, and ultimately putting her to death (except for Joey).
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: As the first season of the show, there are a few noticeable differences from future installments.
    • This is the first and so far only season to have 11 guests at the start instead of 10, and to have one guest die during the first episode. Also, the first two episodes have different titles instead of sharing the same title with "Part 1" and "Part 2".
    • The tarot cards are not featured and the guests vote by writing each others names down on blank scraps of paper.
    • This is the only season where none of the guests get immunity from being voted into a challenge.
    • During the final challenge in the finale the rules state that if a guest is captured they are instantly killed, while future seasons have it so they are given a few minutes to be rescued before being killed.
  • Electric Torture: Episode 9 has this in two forms. The first is the psychiatrist's chair for his patient, the fourth owner of the house. The second is in a variant of the ring toss game, where each miss shocks the person seated above the pegs, and the loser (Lele) gets electrocuted to death.
  • Elimination Statement: Not in the show itself, but an epilogue/Clip Show episode presented by Joey showcases this, along with their "graves".
  • Exact Words: At the end of Episode 2, the remaining guests find a note that warns them that "one among them is in league with The Evil". This naturally worries everyone over which member of their group is The Mole, but the note didn't say one of the guests themselves was in league with The Evil, just that someone among them was. This is revealed at the end of the penultimate episode of the season when Vincent Wells, the one who wrote the note, confirms the one in league with The Evil is the butler, Arthur.
  • Failure-to-Save Murder: Alice=Justine, Bob=Tim, Charlie=Andrea Brooks.
  • Foreshadowing: Not even fifteen seconds into the first episode, the screen briefly shows a gravestone. If one can read with only the top half of the letters, it spells Justine.
  • The Gadfly: The Ringmaster who makes them believe he let Oli and Timothy get eaten by piranhas, when in actuality he never put any in the tank.
  • The Gambler: Justine takes on this role in-universe, and makes allusions to gambling in the first episode. Too bad she dies three episodes in.
  • Heroic Sacrifice:
    • Averted. Matt steps up to make one in Episode 6, but after further contemplation, decides to take it back. The group decides to vote him up for backing out, and Lele is quick to criticize the flip-flop.
    • Averted a SECOND time in the same episode, and by the same person. Matt winds up killing Sierra because he put a rosary on her neck in an effort to save her, before reading a clue that told him that putting the rosary around someone's neck kills them, and the other one lives. After he reads the clue, he handles it poorly.
    • Implied by the fandom in Tim's case in Episode 8.
  • Hollywood Board Games: Since the premise of this Reality Show runs on solving sometimes deadly puzzles, it's not surprising that some of them are based on board games. One of the rooms has The Journalist and The Mobster play Battleship. The twist is that, instead of guessing where a ship is located, you guess where your opponent is. Kind of a Russian Roulette. As for characterization, well, The Journalist is The Smart Gal, so her approach is more strategic. The Mobster, on the other hand, is The Load, so he ends up losing. In the fanmade novelization, it's even worse because Tim accidentally shoots himself in the head.
  • Human Resources: Two college students (one male, one female), electricity, and an Artifact of Doom were all that were needed for the machine in Episode Two.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: Joey had to take the lease so that someone with less moral scruples than he didn't.
  • Lack of Empathy: GloZell's response to Joey falling into a Heroic BSoD after everyone bands together against his wishes to kill Justine is to claim he's faking it, verbally assault him without provocation, and ultimately vote him into another "two enter, one leaves" life-or-death competition and laugh about it. This heavily contributes to Joey deciding to kill her when he gets the opportunity.
  • Roaring Twenties: The time period this is supposed to be set in. Especially the costumes.
  • Russian Roulette: Tim and Eva play the unholy lovechild between this and Battleship.
  • Sadistic Choice: From the second episode onwards, the group regularly has to choose someone to be the next to die.
  • The Scrooge: Colin. He guards his pile of German gold like a pitbull, and even killed his mates because he believed one of them had taken it.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: Vincent Wells tries to warn the guests about Arthur by leaving them a note, warning them that "one among them is in league with The Evil". Unfortunately, because of the vagueness of this note, everyone assumes the note is referring to one of them, which fuels everyone's paranoia and as a result leads to several deaths due to everyone feeling someone else can't be trusted.
  • Wham Episode: Episode 6 introduces a drastic change of plans.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: After hearing Christine's story, Justine talks in testimonial about how incredibly claustrophobic she is, and the tone in her voice is enough to make it clear how drastic it is. Naturally, they have to bury someone alive later that episode. Guess who?
  • Yank the Dog's Chain: Episode 6 early on reveals that even though the guests have successfully managed to collect all four artifacts, they still have to free the five former owners of the house.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle!: After the YouTubers (or at least, the ones still alive) gathered all the artifacts, they perform the ritual, only to find that they had to free the former owners of the Mansion before being able to Escape the Night.

    Season 2 

  • All Webbed Up: Happens to Alex in Episode 3, as well as the corpses found in the same episode.
  • Ambiguously Evil: Jesse is an outlaw who seems more amused by the situation than scared. He unsubtly tries to milk DeStorm the Railroad Tycoon for information about his trains early on.
  • Big Eater: Most of the guests are constantly eating candy throughout Episode 5, but Alex especially. He doesn't hesitate when offered hot cocoa by the episode's antagonist and even doubles back into a room to retrieve a candy bowl.
  • Black-and-Gray Morality: The guests need to temporarily join either the Confederate Army or "the Dark Army" in Episode 4. For a diverse group of liberal-minded, mostly California-based YouTubers, neither is particularly appealing.
  • Black Dude Dies First: Jesse discusses this in episode one to DeStorm. Funny enough, it's Jesse who dies instead of DeStorm.
  • Capture the Flag: The YouTubers play a variant of this in Episode 4.
  • "Could Have Avoided This!" Plot: Implied in Episodes 6 and 9. The Ice Gem was in the compass. When the YouTubers discover this, they are not happy. Some fans take this one step further, stating that Tana's death was for nothing.
  • Damsel in Distress: Liza is kidnapped in the first episode, and basically becomes this for the episode.
    • Lauren and Andrea are also captured. They're rescued in the next episode.
  • Evil Sorceress: The main antagonist for Season 2, and owner of the estate. She made a deal with an Eldritch Abomination to give her powers, and trapped the season 2 house in the Victorian era so she could live forever. She lured Joey to the house and brainwashed him into inviting the guests so she can uphold her end of the bargain by bringing the abomination into this world.
  • Fur Against Fang: Alison versus the werewolves in Episode 8. The werewolves win this round.
  • Genre Savvy: From the survivors of Season One. They both were given invites to the new party. Oli tore his apart and Eva set hers on fire!
  • Harping on About Harpies: Two harpies appear in Episode 6.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Alison in Episode 8, who takes Andrea R.'s place in being mauled by werewolves.
  • Hope Spot: It seems like Episode 5 will end with none of the guests dying, but then the Sorceress gets pissed....
  • I'm a Humanitarian: Episode 5
  • Improbable Infant Survival: The guests save two children from their demise in Episode 5.
  • Invited as Dinner: The YouTubers are invited to a Masquerade Ball held by vampires... who just want their blood. This is even lampshaded by Gabbie, "We are dinner."
  • Irony: In Episode 4, DeStorm lampshades how he, a Black man, is the captain of the team aligned with the Confederate Army.
  • Kill It with Fire: Eva takes out a lighter to burn her invitation, defying Sudden Sequel Death Syndrome.
    Eva: (taking out lighter) Not today, Satan!
  • Level Ate: Episode 5, full stop.
  • Lighter and Softer: Somewhat, compared to the first season. While guests still to die, the season's tone is more leaning towards comedy, with more comedy-focus YouTubers in the cast. The scenarios themselves are more outright Fantasy. The tone only leans more to the first at "Midnight" Episode 8 and beyond, where the guest's are constantly chased down by monsters and features a more tense tone compared to the prior episodes.
  • Masquerade Ball: What the guests are invited to.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: The Leviathan Seals.
  • Neck Snap: Torhild the Undying does this to a harpy in Episode 6.
  • Pinky Swear: The "Pinky Alliance" between Tyler and Joey in Episode 8.
  • Right Under Their Noses: The Ice Gem was in the compass.
  • Sequel Hook: Joey's revival at the ending of Episode 10.
  • Shameless Fanservice Girl: Tana the Saloon Girl has no qualms showing off her body.

    Season 3 

  • Amusement Park of Doom: The setting of this season is a town with an evil carnival.
  • Big "NO!": The YouTubers when Mortimer frees the Carnival Master.
  • Black Girl Dies First: Averted and discussed by Teala behind the scenes:
    Teala: "I know everybody voted me in, 'cause the blacks always die first."
  • Book Ends: Season 3 Episode 5 begins and ends with an arm-wrestling match.
  • Brick Joke: MatPat wins a pink horse/unicorn plushie called Blanche in Episode 1. Blanche disappears for the majority of the Season, reappearing in Episode 9 in the tent, and MatPat swears to keep the promise to get Blanche out of [here]. He DOES do that.
    • Also with MatPat in Episode 10, about going back to Fat Man Slim's.
  • Call-Back: To the previous seasons.
    • "This is not an invitation to a ball or a dinner party." - Season 3 Invitation, Episode 1
    • Especially Season 2. " I can deal with vampires, I can deal with werewolves, and…all sorts of other things." - Joey, Episode 1, Confession Cam
    • The 'insult' "stupid idiots" comes back for another finale (first appearance: Season 1 finale).
  • Cassandra Truth: Twice.
    • In Episode 1, Calliope speaks of the Cursed God and the Evil. The mayor and everyone else dismiss her...until it is revealed that The Cuckoolander Was Right.
    • In Episode 5, Joey reveals the Back from the Dead and related stuff to plead his case. Zigzagged in this case because most of them appear to believe him... except for Colleen, which sparks some conflict in the following episode.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Ro somehow gets a dog plushie in Episode 1 called Blueberry. Blueberry is later thrown from the Ferris Wheel to distract the horde of clowns. It kind of succeeded.
  • Circus of Fear: The setting of this season is a town with an evil carnival.
  • Cutting the Knot: In Episode 6, Joey, Rosanna, and Safiya have to measure out exactly four cups of blood with only a three cup and a five cup measure. Their solution? Empty out another jar in the same room to store the two cups left over from pouring 5 into 3, then repeat. The normal solution 
  • Damsel in Distress: Rosanna and Safiya are kidnapped by the strongman and his girlfriend in the fifth episode and are locked up in the police station's jail cell, but they work together with Manny, Joey, and Mortimer to break out.
  • Darker and Edgier: This Season involves torture methods. There's even an entire episode with that as a CO-THEME.
    • And then there's Episode 9. The sheer amount of sexual assault can disgust even adults.
  • Deadly Closing Credits: Episode 9 ends with the Carnival Master summoning zombies to chase the YouTubers.
  • Dramatic Irony: In "The Clowns Here Kill Part 2", after voting Jc into the death challenge, MatPat is then chosen by Jc to assist them in that challenge.
  • Drop the Hammer: The Monster Clown that Calliope beat up has a hammer.
  • Everything's Deader with Zombies: Episode 10.
  • Foreshadowing: During "Funhouse", Angry Face Willie threatens to kill the group with a fish hook. This is what he uses to kill Safiya.
  • Great Offscreen War: In Episode 9, the Carnival Master tells the remaining YouTubers that they were called into "a war that's not yours". This implies that the Society Against Evil is at war with evil. More about this war, however, remains unknown.
  • Iron Maiden: The death method of Episode 6. Ouch.
  • Magically-Binding Contract: Joey signs a one of these with blood, Binding his life to Everlock.
  • Monster Clown: The theme of Episodes 1 and 2.
  • Nice Mean And In Between: The final three, with Matt as the nice one, Nikita as the mean one, and Joey as the in-between.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Some of the YouTubers sneak into the clowns' disco party by putting on red noses and clown gloves. None of the clowns recognize them.
  • Platonic Declaration of Love: Matthew and Rosanna share one, right before she dies.
    • Also Nikita to Manny in Episode 9, right before she kills him.
  • Platonic Life-Partners: Implied. Nikita/Manny and Matt/Rosanna. Both pairs are extremely protective of each other and visible distraught at the possibility of losing the other in a challenge. The latter pair has even said they're Like Brother and Sister.
    • Subverted in both cases, because as of Episode 9, both Manny and Ro are dead.
  • Plot Twist: In Episode 7, Manny and Nikita find that the one who voted the winner of the challenge in was the one to face death. Nikita won. Safiya was fishhooked. The fans did not take this well.
  • "Ray of Hope" Ending: Liza sends a message to Joey stating he can help bring everyone back to life.
  • Sequel Hook: The deceased YouTubers, using the Carnival Master's crystal, ask Joey to save them. This implies that Season 4 will be an All-Stars season.
  • That Liar Lies: How Colleen calls out Joey in Episode 6. It didn't end well for her.
    Colleen: Liar. You're a liar.
  • This Is for Emphasis, Bitch!: Team 'Badass Bitch'. Also the defining word for Manny and Nikita.
  • Title Drop: The headline of the newspaper found on the Ferris Wheel in Episode 1. "The Clowns Here Kill." Manny proceeds to Downplay this Trope with the series name, then the song at the finale ends up repeating the name of the series about a dozen times. Fantastic.
  • Town with a Dark Secret: Ranks a 1 on the scale, because only Calliope knew of the secret, as far as the residents go. Hell, the main problem at the beginning is that NO ONE BELIEVED HER FROM THE START!!
  • Tragic Monster: With the exception of the killer clowns, the twin dolls, the witches, and Lucy and her demon dog, each of the Carnival Master’s "guardians" have had a tragic backstory.
    • The Snake Woman was The Mistress of a married man until his wife found out and she and her friend beat her up.
    • The Man with No Name was hunted like a wild animal simply for having a disfigured face.
    • The Strong Man was a wimpy police officer for the town of Everlock and not taken seriously being regularly beaten in arm wrestling matches.
    • Willie the Funhouse man was an insurance salesman who was down on his luck and abused by his wife.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: Given that the trailer footage contained scenes of Matt that hadn't been shown by the time he died in Episode 5, it was pretty clear that his death wouldn't stick.
    • Colleen's death was all but shown in the trailers.
  • Wham Episode: In Episode 6, the YouTubers are given the Harp of Lazarus and are allowed to bring one of their deceased fellow YouTubers (of that season) back to life. They chose Matt.
  • Wham Line: In a flashback, by a SAE Member (Jael) in the In-Between Church to Joey - "The Carnival Master has a crystal that can bring those you've lost in the past back to life."

    Season 4 (All Stars) 
  • Anachronism Stew: The male rebel from the Imperial China episode wears a Manchu plait, which would not be in style for at least a century, and even then, the original Manchu plait did not look like that.
    • Typical for King Arthur settings - medieval armour…prior to even 600 AD. Of course.
  • Ancient Egypt: The theme of the first 2 episodes.
  • Arc Words: Oddly enough, Episode 7 has one - "story".
  • Bilingual Bonus: The mercenaries that the boys encounter first in Episode 4 speak Mandarin, as a Chinese viewer verified, instead of something that invokes As Long as It Sounds Foreign.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: The Collector is the main villain throughout the episodes, but once the Sorceress kills her and takes over the Museum of the Dead, she regains the role of the Big Bad of the season.
  • Blazing Inferno Hellfire Sauce: Bretman and Nikita have to consume some very hot substance during their part of the quest in Episode 7.
  • Brick Break: The boys have to break a board in Episode 4 to “show their worth”.
  • Call-Back: A lot - try having a Drinking Game with that in mind.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Excalibur. It first appeared in Episode 5 and was used to slay the Black Knight, then was brought back in Episode 10, turned into the Sword of All Legends, then used to kill the Collector.
  • Classical Mythology: Episode 6 drags in Ancient Grome from behind.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Discussed in Episode 7, where there are dancers in rather revealing outfits.
  • Distressed Dude: Alex being one seems to be a recurring event this season.
  • Engagement Challenge: Invoked by the Emperor’s mother to get his son a wife in the background of Episode 4. The girls compete in this, over beauty, etiquette and communication.
  • Fanservice: Most notably, the dancers of Episode 7.
  • Flashback Cut: Much more prominent in this season than previous seasons, likely due to being an All Stars season. If you drink every time there is a flashback in Episode 1 alone, you might end up pretty tipsy.
  • Foreshadowing: Quite a bit.
    • The Gorgon receives an Early-Bird Cameo in Episode 1.
    • The Dinosaur exhibit shows up on the map in Episode 1, and becomes a focal point of Episode 9.
    • The Collector opens a portal to Everlock at the beginning of the season. It is later revealed that The Man With No Name, the Monster of the Week of Season 3 Episode 4 will make a triumphant return at the end of the season.
  • Friendly Rivalry: It is implied that MatPat and Nikita share one. It is also likely that they have become Fire-Forged Friends.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: Scheherazade writes from right to left in the very first scene of her episode, as Arabic is writtem that way.
  • Gone Horribly Wrong: It has been constantly re-emphasized that Season 4 was supposed to be a rescue mission. Obviously, that didn't work out as intended - the people you're supposed to be saving shouldn't be dying on a rescue mission of all things!
  • Hollywood History: Raptors and a caveman appearing the same episode would definitely raise some eyebrows…
  • Imperial China: The setting of Episode 4.
  • Insane Troll Logic: Bretman, in episode 6, gets three in a row. He is faced with the riddle "Feed me and I live, give me a drink and I'll die". First, he ignores the trapped Nikita's help (despite her getting the first riddle correct, and in this case she was also more or less on the mark) because "you got got for a reason", even though her getting caught had nothing to do with the riddles. Then, to answer the riddle, he chooses grapes - because (paraphrased) "when I'm eating grapes, I'm living, and when you smash grapes, you get wine, and drinking too much wine can kill you". And finally, when that fails, he has to be directly told by everyone what to use - and yet he has the gall to call them dumb, because the item they told him to use ("lighter") wasn't the exact thing he had to say out loud ("fire").
  • Interchangeable Asian Cultures: Zigzagged. Episode 4 clearly identifies Imperial China (the Ming Dynasty, specifically), but the Brick Break part is NOT a part of Chinese martial arts…
  • Killed Off for Real: Anyone that dies in the dimension of Purgatory is permadead, i.e. has no chance of ever coming back.
  • King Arthur: The background of Episode 5.
  • Mass "Oh, Crap!": When the Sorceress betrays the YouTubers at the end of Episodde 9 and reverts her villain status by taking over the Museum.
  • Men Are Strong, Women Are Pretty: Enforced in Episode 4, where the boys and girls are separated. The former must prove themselves as worthy warriors or be sent to the final challenge, and the girls must compete in beauty, etiquette and communication to be married off to the Emperor (and not be possibly voted in, and to get the Key of the episode).
  • Merlin: He shows up to aid the YouTubers!
  • Museum of the Strange and Unusual: Where the season takes place.
  • Pirate: Leaked months before the season.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: A dragon shows up at the end of Episode 3, and into Episode 4. A Chinese dragon, like a dragon dance form (even though dragon dances are somewhat different that depicted)…that breathes fire. note 
  • Our Minotaurs Are Different: Remember Episode 6, where they brought in the Minotaur, complete with maze?
  • Pandora's Box: The Artifact of Doom, in the very end.
  • Pirate: The theme of Episode 8. However, their appearance has been leaked long before the release of the season.
  • Plot Twist: Erm, if a pre-release one counts... the Teasing Creator established the season to be an All-Stars season, only to throw in a newbie for the last character introduced, probably shocking many fans.
    • In-universe, Joey originally expected a simple rescue mission, but managed to drag in the fourth death games. Thank goodness he's Genre Savvy.
    • In Episode 2, the YouTubers had split up to recover the Twin Sphynxes, and find that they must vote from their own group. Later in the challenge, the winner had to command the Pharoah to kill the loser.
    • Episode 5. We have a double death. The fandom is screaming outrage worse than that time with Safiya, and that's saying something.
    • In Episode 7, it is revealed that one person can be returned from the death "of which there is no return". Earlier that episode, Fatima chose to doom Scheherazade instead of any of the participants of the challenge.
  • Sequel Hook: In the end, Joey end up being trapped inside a Pandora's Box after he opened it.
  • She Is the King: Played with. Several of the YouTubers voted Joey into the challenge because they thought that the King of Camelot had to be male. Colleen got the tears of the Lady of the Lake instead, drank them and pulled out Excalibur, then killed the Black Knight!
  • Trailers Always Spoil: The trailer implies Colleen's return.
  • Wax Museum Morgue: The YouTuber exhibit looks suspiciously like one of these.

I have so many, so many regrets
So many lies, so many broken ties
I wish for my old life
Wish I could fix my strife

Cause no one truly escapes the night
Oh, won't you help me escape the night
Oh, baby, help me escape the night

Escape the night...


Video Example(s):


Buried Justine

To obtain the artifact, the group voted for Justine to be buried alive in a coffin.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / BuriedAlive

Media sources: