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TV Shows and Movies with the Best Use of Airlocks

Updated November 19, 2020 1.2k votes 290 voters 63.3k views26 items

List RulesVote up the TV series and movies that made best use of airlocks, whether to advance plot, character, or overall awesomeness.

There's that classic moment in so many sci-fi films and TV shows where the vacuum of space pulls at our heroes (or the villains) and our heart strings. There's something so intense and visceral about the power and endless abyss of space. Directors and writers have been toying with the airlock as an action set piece concept since the first space films and sci-fi TV shows.

It's used on dozens of television shows, many of them making it an ongoing threat or means of execution. Science fiction films like Alien, Sunshine, and Event Horizon have used airlocks in graphic ways to dismember or jettison one of the heroes (or main villain in the case of Alien and Aliens). Other times the airlock can even be used comedically, like in Austin Powers or Galaxy Quest.

This is a round up of all of those times airlocks featured prominently - and awesomely - in your favorite science fiction from both the small and big screens. Vote up the movies and TV shows that used the airlock the best - whether to rid a ship of cylons, or to get laughs.
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  • Battlestar Galactica
    Photo: Syfy
    This show used airlocks so much that it became a verb! To airlock someone was to execute them, and it happened A LOT.
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  • Just as in Alien, seemingly the only way to get rid of the Xenomorph is to throw it out of the airlock. In this case, Ripley does so with the beastly front loader.

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  • At the end of the film, the only way to off the Xenomorph is to discharge it from the airlock... and it's awesome.

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  • The airlock basically becomes the central antagonist at one point in this 2015 Ridley Scott film. After having survived for weeks on Mars with food he was able to grow himself (science!), Mark Watney (Matt Damon) *SPOILER* lost everything when an airlock blew, destroying all of his crops.
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