From side-splitting sitcom episodes to heart-pounding thriller movies, escape rooms have become a prevalent theme in various forms of entertainment. Let’s embark on a journey through the maze of escape room shows and movies that have embraced the escape room phenomenon, providing audiences with a thrilling and immersive experience.

Escape Rooms Shows

Friends watching escape room shows

1. Modern Family – The Escape (S9, E21 – 2018.05.09)

The Pritchett clan takes an unexpected turn when drama ensues during a family visit to Jay’s sister at a nursing home. Seeking a breather, Phil, Cam, and Gloria decide to explore an escape room but find themselves trapped in the nursing home’s basement, unleashing a comedic yet suspenseful adventure.

2. Brooklyn Nine-Nine – Karen Peralta (S3, E14 – 2016.02.02)

Captain Holt leads the Nine-Nine squad in a team-building exercise at an escape room, only to face an unexpected challenge with the “B-Team.” Gina’s forgetfulness results in a race against time to avert a fictional nuclear apocalypse, providing both humor and excitement in one of the top escape room shows. 

3. 2 Broke Girls – And the Escape Room (S5, E5 – 2015.12.17)

When Han insists on mandatory team-building for the diner gang at an “Escape Room Club,” Max and Caroline find themselves in an “Alice in Wonderland”-themed room. The escape room becomes a backdrop for repairing their friendship, emphasizing the transformative power of teamwork.

4. Castle – The Blame Game (S8, E12 – 2016.02.22)

Castle and Beckett face a sinister twist in an escape room as they are drugged and abducted. The duo must navigate a deranged version of an escape room with strangers, uncovering puzzles and locks in a truly murderous setting in one of the best escape room shows. 

5. My Little Pony – All Bottled Up (S7, E2 – 2017.04.15)

Even the magical world of My Little Pony embraces escape room challenges when the Mane Six visit “Manehattan Escapes.” Fueled by the power of friendship, they aim to beat the record set by griffons, adding a whimsical touch to the escape room trend of escape room shows. 

6. Portlandia – “Kath and Dave Try Escape Room” (S8, E3 – 2018.02.01)

Kath and Dave’s escapade in an escape room takes a hilarious turn as they face off against (or team up with) survivalist strangers. The sketch highlights the importance of embracing the “game” aspect of escape games.

7. The Middle – Escape Orson (S8, E10 – 2017.01.03)

Frankie stumbles upon an escape room coupon, leading the Heck family on an impromptu outing. The competitive spirit arises when they encounter the Donahues, and Sue’s puzzle-solving prowess is put to the test, revealing unexpected family dynamics.

8. Bob’s Burgers – The Trouble with Doubles (S8, E14 – 2018.04.15)

Bob and Linda’s double date takes an awkward turn at “Great Escape-tations.” The escape room becomes a comedic savior, injecting chaos into the evening and testing the limits of the characters’ relationships in one of the best escape room shows. 

9. The Big Bang Theory – The Intimacy Acceleration (S8, E16 – 2015.02.16)

Emily suggests an escape room for the group, leading to a quirky adventure involving a flesh-eating zombie scenario in Dr. David Saltzberg’s lab. The group’s collective IQ shines as they escape in record time, showcasing the power of intellect and camaraderie.

10. The Rookie – Time of Death (S1, E8 – 2018.12.11)

In a nod to escape rooms, Bishop and Nolan find themselves trapped in a medieval dungeon escape room while chasing a suspect. The episode humorously explores the concept of escape rooms as hipster entertainment.

11. American Housewife – Surprise (S1, E12 – 2017.07.17)

Katie and Jeff organize a space-themed escape room for Oliver’s 13th birthday, turning the basement into a galactic adventure. The unexpected twist of a stuck door adds a touch of chaos, testing the family’s resilience.

Escape Rooms in Reality TV

The Great Escape – Escape Room Shows of Reality TV

For those craving a global twist to their escape room shows experience, “The Great Escape” offers a passport to excitement. This international sensation brings together contestants from around the world to tackle some of the most challenging and culturally diverse escape rooms ever conceived. From the heart-pounding streets of Tokyo to the mysterious corners of Eastern Europe, each episode unfolds like a cinematic journey, combining suspense, strategy, and a touch of cultural exploration.

The Great Escape is a testament to the universal appeal of escape room challenges. It transcends language barriers, proving that the thrill of solving puzzles and overcoming obstacles is a language understood by all.


While not one of the traditional escape room shows, “Taskmaster” offers a unique and hilarious twist on the genre. In this British comedy game show, contestants are given a series of absurd and often ridiculous tasks to complete. The result? A laugh-out-loud experience that showcases creativity, wit, and the ability to think outside the box.

“Taskmaster” is the perfect escape show for those seeking a lighter, more comedic take on challenges. As contestants attempt to outsmart each other in the most unexpected ways, you’ll find yourself drawn into a world where the absurd becomes the norm. It’s a refreshing departure from the intense suspense of traditional escape room shows, providing a lighthearted alternative for holiday entertainment.

The Crystal Maze

For a classic take on escape room shows, look no further than “The Crystal Maze.” Originally a beloved British game show, this timeless series has been revived and continues to captivate audiences with its mix of physical challenges and brain-teasing puzzles. Contestants navigate through four themed zones, each presenting a unique set of challenges that test their mental and physical prowess.  

“The Crystal Maze” is a delightful blend of nostalgia and modern entertainment. It’s one of the top escape room shows that transcends generations, making it an ideal choice for family gatherings during the holidays. Join the laughter, cheer on your favorite contestants, and revel in the joy of watching ordinary people transform into heroes as they strive to conquer the maze.

Escape Room Movies

A man trying to run from an escape room

1. The Game (1997)

Although predating the escape room trend, “The Game” encapsulates the essence of an escape room without borders. Michael Douglas navigates a customized, real-life game that blurs the lines between reality and illusion.

2. Cube (1997)

In this mysterious thriller escape room shows, a group of diverse individuals faces a nightmarish matrix of identical rooms, emphasizing the challenges of collaboration and survival in a high-stakes environment.

3. Panic Room (2002)

David Fincher’s film explores the concept of a panic room, where a mother and daughter find themselves trapped. The movie weaves a gripping tale around getting in and out of the confined space, showcasing the tension of being trapped.

4. Phone Booth (2002)

Colin Farrell faces an intense scenario as he answers a call from a phone booth, realizing he’s trapped by a sniper. While not an escape room in the traditional sense, the film explores the tension of escaping an impossible situation.

5. Saw (2004)

The Saw series introduces the horror genre to the concept of an escape room, as individuals wake up in a deadly game orchestrated by a serial killer. The franchise delves into the psychological and physical challenges of escaping.

6. Fermat’s Room (2007)

A Spanish film elevates the escape room concept by challenging four brilliant minds to solve a series of math riddles within tight time constraints. The movie builds tension through intellectual challenges and linguistic subtleties.

7. Exam (2009)

In a unique job interview scenario, eight candidates are locked in an exam room with a single question, raising questions about competition, collaboration, and the unknown.

8. Cabin in the Woods (2012)

Joss Whedon’s film, initially appearing as a common slasher horror flick, unveils a deeper layer as it explores the mysterious events surrounding a cabin trip. The narrative goes beyond expectations, revealing hidden complexities.

9. The Institute (2013)

Blurring the lines between documentary and mockumentary, this film explores the Jejune Institute, an Augmented Reality Game in San Francisco. The real-life experience delves into the immersive nature of alternate reality challenges.

10. Escape Room (2017)

A supernatural twist distinguishes this escape room movie, featuring Skeet Ulrich and Sean Young. The escape room itself becomes possessed, adding a layer of horror to the traditional escape room setting.


Is there an escape room TV show?

Ben Stiller brings the phenomenon of escape rooms to television in spectacularly over-the-top style with Celebrity Escape Room.

What is the Netflix series about the escape room?

Escape Room: Tournament Of Champions

Why are escape rooms so much fun?

Escape Rooms are more than puzzles in a room; they are a story where the players can play a critical role.

Is escape room very scary?

Escape rooms are designed to be fun, engaging, and challenging experiences. However, some individuals might feel scared due to the theme, atmosphere, or their personal fears


Escape rooms have seamlessly woven themselves into the fabric of pop culture, captivating audiences across escape room shows, reality TV, late-night entertainment, and blockbuster movies. From the comedic escapades of sitcom characters to the high-stakes challenges in thriller films, the escape room trend continues to evolve, offering a diverse range of experiences.

Whether it’s laughter, suspense, or a test of intellect, escape rooms have become a versatile and enduring theme in entertainment, providing audiences with an immersive journey beyond the ordinary. As the escape room craze continues to thrive, it’s clear that the quest for adventure and challenge knows no bounds in the world of pop culture.