Is there a name for the trope where the characters in a car always just so happen to get a spot exactly in front of whatever location they're driving to? It's certainly the norm in movies, and I'm just wondering if a name has ever been given to it.

  • I've assumed, in some of these shows, that the character either doesn't care (might get towed), or that it's valet parking and we don't see the valet exchange. For example, in the Doris Day answer, I'd assume she gives the keys to someone inside. Dec 11 '14 at 19:28
  • Counter to Rock Star Parking's description, it's not just for heroes and it's not just for when they're in a hurry. It happens all the time for heroes and villains alike. Dec 11 '14 at 20:04
  • @JohnnyBones: It does, however, not happen when someone is about to get mugged or otherwise assaulted somewhere between the car and the destination. In particular, when those passengers who could fight off the assault are at the destination and hence sufficiently far away from the parked car. Dec 12 '14 at 12:08
  • Ahhh. Right! So, only when seen arriving at a destination do they get Rock Star Parking. Or, if there needs to be some extra dialogue on the way to the location, then they have to be shown parking in some other location. But if they cut straight to a restaurant scene, then the car can be anywhere, depending on the story's needs. Dec 12 '14 at 13:06

If you consider TvTropes an 'official' trope namer, they call it Rock Star Parking:

Any time the hero is really in a hurry, there is always an empty parking space directly in front of their destination. Even if in, say, downtown New York. This is generally seen as an Acceptable Break from Reality as really, no one wants to watch an hour of the heroes searching around to find parking... unless, of course, it's the point of the episode.

They name the Beverly Hills Cop film series and Kojak as especially egregious examples.

  • 1
    Maybe because they do a lot of driving in BHC, but really it's in EVERY FLIPPIN' MOVIE. But the description is right; we just accept it because it speeds the movie along. And I love that name: "Rock Star Parking". Awesome. :o) Dec 11 '14 at 14:29
  • 2
    True, but sometimes it's averted, like Geroge's dad on Seinfeld who, once finally managing to find a good spot, won't go out for weeks just so he could keep it.
    – Walt
    Dec 11 '14 at 18:09
  • @Walt That's because Seinfeld is the anti-trope show and its awesome for it! Haha...
    – LeonX
    Jun 30 '17 at 19:40

There is a second lesser used trope name that pre-dates "Rock Star Parking", although "Rock Star Parking" is today's standard. I'm adding this answer just to add history, after all tropes evolve just like language.

This trope was originally called "Doris Day Parking"

Here's a clip that shows Doris Day getting Doris day parking ( :59 )

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