Updating Romantic Comedy Tropes for Modern Times

The Airport Run

Realizing he let the love of his life get away, the hero calls an Uber to the airport during peak surge pricing. Twenty-three minutes and $87 later, he jumps into a beat-up sedan that looks nothing like the car on the app, and they pull into rush hour traffic.

At the airport, the hero purchases a cheap plane ticket and inches through a series of long, winding security lines. He realizes his dad was right: he really should have purchased TSA PreCheck.

Thankfully, he reaches the heroine’s gate with time to spare, because her flight was delayed five hours (and ultimately canceled).

Only One Bed

Two friends book a cabin with two beds on Airbnb, but upon arriving they realize the second bed is actually a yoga mat with a blanket and pillow.

They can’t leave due to an unforecasted blizzard, so they’re forced to spend a week sharing a small bed. As the sexual tension builds, they must ask themselves: “Is it possible that the infuriating friend stealing my blanket every night also stole my heart?”

Big City Woman Moves to Small Town

A woman longs for the simplicity of country life and wants her own love story with a hot small town man. On a whim, she packs up her life in Chicago and drives to her freshman-year roommate’s West Virginia hometown, which she spoke of fondly.

The heroine despises small town life and moves back to Chicago two days later, local hotties be damned.

The Meet Cute

A busy businessman is so distracted by work emails that he speed walks into a TikTok influencer who stopped to film her outfit on a crowded New York City sidewalk. He drops his phone and she picks it up, but before handing it back, the heroine convinces the hero to record a TikTok dance with her, which goes megaviral.

The businessman’s enraged boss questions his commitment to business and fires him. He spends his newfound free time with the heroine, who teaches him how to appreciate the little things in life, like audience retention and brand deals.

The Vacation Fling

Two hot strangers drunkenly hook up on a world cruise and realize they have a lot in common, like their love of partying and watered-down alcoholic beverages with bottom-shelf liquor.

As their getaway comes to an end, can they make things work in the real world? No, because they’ve only known each other for three days, and he doesn’t clean up his toenail clippings.

The Catfish

The hero creates a dating app profile and utilizes ChatGPT to craft witty messages. A beautiful woman asks him on a date, but their conversation is brutally awkward without AI at his fingertips.

The heroine declines a second date, and he yells, “Good! You’re not actually my type anyway! I only asked you on a second date out of pity.” Someone films and uploads his outburst to Twitter with the hashtag #cyraNOPEdebergerac, and he is promptly canceled.

Childhood Sweethearts

The hero and heroine were inseparable as kids, but they lost touch when she went off to college. A decade later, she returns home and they reconnect. He proposes, swearing, “If you’ll marry me I’ll be as happy as the night is dark. Speaking of nights, did you know they faked the moon landing?”

The heroine must choose between two worlds: the round globe she calls home or his flat Earth. Can she love a conspiracy theorist with a tin foil hat, or will she break his tin foil heart?

Hot Single Dad

A hot single dad falls for his live-in nanny. One night, they share a bottle of wine and he attempts to kiss her. She takes him to court over the hostile work environment and uses the money she wins to move far away from the creepy dad whose defense in court was, “I’d never harass a woman—I’m a father of daughters!”

The Miscommunication

The heroine sends the hero a text asking if he’d like to go on a date. Trying not to appear overeager, he replies with a simple, “Ok.” She misinterprets his reply as a cold rejection and blocks him. They never speak again.

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