15 Deadliest Traps Kevin Ever Made, Ranked

Split of Harry and Marv being subjected to lethal traps in the Home Alone franchise

With the holiday season fast approaching, we fondly look back at when Macaulay Culkin got to play the world’s smartest 8-year-old, Kevin McCallister, in two of the greatest Christmas movies to ever deck our halls: Home Alone and Home Alone 2: Lost in New York.

While Kevin may have had a baby face and a mile-wide smile, he was no angel and proved with his wit and imagination that no burglar could outsmart him. Despite his motives to defend himself, his home, and a sizable donation to a children’s hospital, some of Kevin’s tactics were downright deadly. Here’s a ranked list of how deadly this Christmas menace’s traps really were.

Updated on December 11th, 2022 by Melody MacReady:

As the holiday season rolls in, families are going to be putting on the many classic films for the season including the first two Home Alone movies. These movies combined heart, drama, comedy, and slapstick all into one that people cherish, even if the slapstick is unrealistic at times.

Both Home Alone and Home Alone 2: Lost In New York featured even more traps than previously listed that potentially or most definitely would have resulted in the deaths of Harry and Marv. That’s part of what makes the traps so enjoyable; the fact that these lethal traps simply cause pain and the two keep going makes for strong slapstick.


Staple Gun

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1991)

Marv glaring angrily at the staple in Home Alone 2 Lost In New York (1991)

This may not seem all that lethal and for the most part, that is correct. However, if someone looks at the size of the staples used, they are definitely construction staples which means not only are they big but the gun firing them is powerful.

RELATED: 10 Ways That Home Alone Has Aged Surprisingly Well

These staples could have easily punctured something vital, even going right through Marv’s skull and into the brain. The wounds seem in the film are dangerous on their own, even if they are hilarious thanks to Daniel Stern’s well-delivered reactions.

Frozen Stairs

Home Alone (1990)

Marv laying at the bottom of the icy basement stairs in Home Alone (1990)

Harry and Marv are actually quite fortunate that they land in just the right ways to keep them alive. Simply falling down stairs can lead to a person’s death, especially in this case where the stairs are made of cement and brick. One wrong landing of the head would have caved in their skulls.

Marv is especially lucky since he had a much longer flight of stairs whereas Harry only had to contend with a few. If Marv had rolled in any way, it would have been the end of the night for him unless paramedics took him to the hospital fast enough.

The Paint Cans

Home Alone (1990)

Harry and Marv on the stairs suffering through the paint can trap in Home Alone (1990)

When the bandits try to follow Kevin up the stairs, he launches a pair of paint cans over the banister and lands direct hits both of them in the face. In the real world, paint cans are not only durable metal or hard plastic, but they are quite heavy. These items could have resulted in fractured skulls and far more damage than Harry losing his golden tooth.

In the end, however, these paint cans would become arguably the most famous traps of the first Home Alone. They were featured in the trailers and many other slapstick comedies of the time would feature rather similar moments, including the sequel.

Falling Onto A Car

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1991)

Harry crash landing onto a car in Home Alone 2 Lost In New York (1991)

Ignoring the fact that the seesaw trap that Kevin sets would never create as much force as it does, this first trap comedically sends Harry flying into the air before crashing into a car, making the roof cave in.

If Harry did generate that much force to cause such an effect, he would not be getting back up. Cars, especially the roofs, are designed to be sturdy so to cause it to collapse would also result in Harry breaking his ribs, spine, and even his skull in one go.

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1991)

Harry and Marv being crushed by a tool chest and door in Home Alone 2 Lost In New York (1991)

Realism is already out the window when the tool chest falls down the stairs perfectly upright the entire time. Then it rams both Harry and Marv into a wall, crushing them. For the sake of analysis, if this miracle had happened and the tool chest generated that much force, the impact would have done so much more than break their noses.

RELATED: Home Alone’s Wet Bandits & 9 Other Iconic On-Screen Criminal Duos, Ranked

If anything, the realistic scenario would have been the tool chest tumbling down to the door and slamming said door downward to crush the burglars. Either way, Harry and Marv are going to the hospital at the very least.

The Blow Torch

Home Alone (1990)

Harry being burned by a blow torch in Home Alone (1990)

This is a case where Kevin is lucky that the shorter of the two villains tried opening the door. Harry getting hit with the blow torch is brutal, especially since he decides to just sit there and scream as the torch continues to burn his scalp in a hilarious fashion that helps turn Home Alone into a classic slapstick movie.

However, Harry will just need major treatment for his head at the most. Now, imagine for a moment if the much taller Marv had attempted to enter through the back door. Marv’s entire face would have been enveloped in flames, resulting in very possible death or permanent disfiguration.

Swinging Zipline

Home Alone (1990)

Harry and Marv swinging on a rope in Home Alone (1990)

This classic bit of slapstick became an iconic visual used in all the trailers with Harry and Marv swinging like Tarzan right into a stone wall. This trap has several variables that don’t immediately guarantee a death, such as Harry and Marv using their legs or their shoulders, or even their back to soften the blow which would still be painful.

With that said, the amount of force that Harry and Marv gain from the swing would have resulted in a deadly hit due to them landing face-first. Crushed skulls, fractured jaws, and the whole works would have gone into play.

Crowbar To The Chest

Home Alone (1990)

Split image of Harry and Marv during the crowbar scene in Home Alone (1990)

This is not a guaranteed death, but there is a high chance of it depending on where Marv hits. It’s hard to blame Marv for his arachnophobia, but slamming his best friend with an iron crowbar is a bit much, even if it results in some of Harry and Marv’s greatest quotes in the series.

In the movie, it just results in a humorous squeal from Harry, but in reality, it would be a totally different story. With the amount of strength Marv put into his swing, Harry is easily looking at fractured ribs and collapsed lungs. If Marv had aimed just a little to the side, the crowbar could have also easily stopped or ruptured Harry’s heart.

The Clothing Iron

Home Alone (1990)

Marv looking at the camera after the hot iron trap in Home Alone (1990)

As much as this is a classic slapstick pratfall, it is also unrealistic. Marv gets hit with a hot iron from a long fall down the laundry chute and all that happens is that he gets a red print of the iron on his face. It’s one of Marv’s most famous traps, but the real result of such a trap would be far more lethal.

The clue is in the name of the item: iron. It’s a hard piece of metal with multiple components inside and even had a pointed tip. Similar to the bricks seen in the sequel, the iron would immediately kill Marv by driving itself deep into his skull.

Double-Strike With A Pipe

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1991)

Harry and Marv getting hit with an iron pipe in Home Alone 2 Lost In New York (1991)

There is no other way around it, Harry and Marv should be 100% dead with this trap. It’s a clever trap in Home Alone 2 with Harry and Marv trying to use their knowledge of the first movie to outsmart Kevin but unfortunately for them, he’s always one step ahead so after throwing the paint cans, he throws an iron pipe which sends the two flying back into the basement.

First off, there’s no way Kevin would have been able to pick that up. Second, the impact alone would have killed Harry and Marv, possibly even decapitating them by the way it hits them. Thirdly, Kevin takes it even further by cutting the pipe down which sends it falling to the basement where it lands on Harry and Marv’s faces. Needless to say, their heads would no longer exist.

Bricks From Above

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1991)

Marv looking terrified of the bricks in Home Alone 2 Lost In New York (1991)

Never mind the fact that Kevin apparently has the best aim in the world with a brick, a real brick is extremely heavy. It’s essentially a rectangular rock and Kevin hilariously chucks them into Marv’s face multiple times as the bandit’s first trap of Home Alone 2.

RELATED: Here’s What The Cast Of Home Alone Looks Like Now

It should be no surprise that realism is not involved here because most should know that even one brick would have killed Marv. The most likely outcome would have been the brick embedding itself into Marv’s brain meanwhile four bricks would have been overkill.

100 Pounds Of Cement

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1991)

Split image of Marv going the cement bag trap in Home Alone 2 Lost In New York (1991)

Does this really need to be explained? It’s 100 pounds of cement plaster and compacted powder of any kind is already something that can hurt a person. So, it makes it hilarious that Marv barely reacts when 100 pounds of powder fall multiple stories to collide with his face.

In the real world, this would have resulted in an instantly broken neck as well as some fracturing of the skull. Still, the reaction Marv gives makes the whole trap a nice hark to two traps from the first Home Alone.

Falling 30 Feet Onto Cement

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1991)

Harry and Marv being covered in varnish in Home Alone 2 Lost In New York (1991)

Kevin really stepped up his pyromaniac skills in the second movie by luring the bandits to the roof and then coaxing them to climb a rope all the way back down to catch him. As soon as the already battle-worn burglars start shimmying down, Kevin ignites the kerosene-soaked rope, causing the duo to let go and plummet to the concrete which should have killed them on impact.

Adding more injury, Harry and Marv become covered in varnish and its original cans. At that point, Harry and Marv really should have just given up, but they continue to chase after Kevin, even though most of their bones should be shattered.

Electrified Sink

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1991)

Marv turning into a skeleton in Home Alone 2 Lost In New York (1991)

Oddly enough, this is not the most deadly electric trap in this franchise; that honor goes to the traps featured in Home Alone 3. Still, it is rather twisted that Kevin not only rigged for Marv to get covered in paint but also knew he would go for a sink, which Kevin electrifies.

In the film, it’s arguably the most famous trap of Home Alone 2 with Marv’s screams continuing to get more and more extreme as Kevin cranks up the voltage. It even results in Marv turning into a skeleton in a cartoonish fashion that is more suitable for kids. For a more realistic depiction of death by electrocution, viewers should watch The Green Mile instead.

Kerosene Explosion

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1991)

Harry looking burned after an explosion in Home Alone 2 Lost In New York (1991)

Obviously, a movie intended for the whole family is not going to have Harry explode into a flourish of blood and gore. However, that would be the real result if Harry had dipped his flaming head into a toilet bowl filled with kerosene and caused an explosion.

Instead, Harry just comes out with a tattered look and smoking, similar to the first film but with far more damage. It just goes to show that all it would take is a few tweaks of the script as Home Alone would be on the same R-rated level as a Saw movie.

NEXT: The 10 Best Traps Of Home Sweet Home Alone

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