A Murphy bed is a staple in old movies and television shows, usually as part of a comic routine. And it’s easy to see why they were such comedy favorites: a Murphy bed, unlike a traditional bed with a box spring and bed frame, is hinged at the head end and folds up against a wall for storage. In movies, this usually happens at unexpected moments, trapping someone between the bed and the wall. While it may have been a real problem when Murphy beds were in their prime, modern Murphy beds don’t really spring back into vertical position and spontaneously trap their occupants upside down. Fortunately, they are usually equipped with a counterbalance mechanism that prevents unprovoked retraction. It’s certainly less funny, but much safer this way!