Questions tagged [inspiration]

Use this tag for questions about the inspiration behind ideas (names, characters, objects, titles, etc.) in science fiction or fantasy works. Use [influence] for questions about how SF&F works have influenced other works or culture.

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Any acknowledged real-world inspiration for the Centauri - Narn conflict?

One of the major plots of the Babylon 5 series is the conflict between the Centauri (an ancient but declining empire) and the Narn (a rapidly industrialising former Centauri colony), represented on ...
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14 votes
1 answer
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Was it confirmed by anybody that an orc was modeled after Harvey Weinstein?

I just stumbled upon the story from 2021 that one orc in The Lord of the Rings from director Peter Jackson was modeled after Harvey Weinstein: One orc among many in the Lord of the Rings movies was ...
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6 votes
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Was "Is this a pigeon?" from The Brave Fighter of Sun Fighbird, inspired by Bambi?

Is what has now become a famous meme, Yutaro Katori, a human android asks: Is this a pigeon? When seeing a butterfly, as they're still learning to recognise the difference. On watching the much ...
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3 votes
0 answers
159 views

What inspired the fascist logo in the Doctor Who serial "Inferno"?

In the Doctor Who story "Inferno," the Third Doctor accidentally transports himself to an alternate universe, in which Britain has evidently been a fascist dictatorship since at least 1943. ...
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1 vote
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Was the firing squad scene in Hell Bent inspired by the similar situation in Carnage of Krell?

In the Doctor Who episode, Hell Bent, the Doctor is facing a firing squad, who are made up of those who respect him more than they respect the person giving them orders. In this case it is president ...
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7 votes
1 answer
109 views

Cover art on Lafferty's collection Nine Hundred Grandmothers

A three-breasted woman is depicted on the cover, by artists Leo and Diane Dillon, of the 1970 first edition of the R. A. Lafferty collection Nine Hundred Grandmothers. Was this cover inspired by a ...
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25 votes
2 answers
6k views

Was Douglas Adams specifically joking about British small talk?

There's this paragraph in the book: “One of the things Ford Prefect had always found hardest to understand about humans was their habit of continually stating and repeating the very very obvious, as ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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Similarities between The Wheel of Time and Tolkien's Legendarium

Did Robert Jordan ever remark on the similarities between The Wheel of Time and Tolkien's Legendarium? Especially names from The Silmarillion (Hurin, Huan &c.) and characters/themes (not names, ...
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5 votes
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Was T-Bob inspired by astromech droids or something else?

One of the characters I remember most from M.A.S.K was T-Bob who always reminded me of R2D2. The page on fandom states that Wikipedia used to have a whole page for the character making the connection,...
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2 votes
0 answers
128 views

Was "Men Without Bones" inspired by the Yara-ma-yha-who myth?

The story Men Without Bones by Gerald Kersh is very old and ends with the memorable line, "We are the Martians -- they are the men!" According to legend the Yara-ma-yha-who is a: creature ...
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-5 votes
1 answer
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What is the first work to base Hogwarts uniforms on modern school uniforms?

The text of the first Harry Potter book describe the school uniform as a black robe with a black cloak, a hat, and dragon hide gloves when hand protection is needed, and I think that's pretty cool. ...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Was this Stargate SG-1 martial arts training montage inspired by The Karate Kid? [closed]

Was the Stargate SG-1 episode "Affinity" (S8E7) martial arts training montage inspired by The Karate Kid? Just wondering if anyone else was getting a Karate Kid vibe during the scene where ...
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21 votes
2 answers
4k views

Was Batman based on The Count of Monte Cristo?

I was just watching "So you haven't read" for Alexandre Dumas' "Count of Monte Cristo" (a bit ironic since not only have I read it, I did it in two different translations, English ...
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8 votes
1 answer
438 views

Has Tolkien ever commented on the similarity between the name "Baggins" and the French word for "ring"?

There is some discussion on the origins of the name Baggins in this question. However, it only revolves around whether or not it is related to Bilbo being a thief, and I am interested in something ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Is the character Rigsy a nod to Banksy?

Rigsy was a one-off Doctor Who character who became a two-off when he appeared in both Series 8 "Flatline" and Series 9 "Face the Raven". Originally, he was a graffiti artist doing ...
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12 votes
1 answer
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Where did the title of the short story "Allamagoosa" by Eric Frank Russell come from?

The famous (anthologised and adapted for radio) Eric Frank Russell sci-fi short story "Allamagoosa" involves a misunderstood word: However, the title is a complete, utter mystery to me. Is ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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What, if anything, is Eld Vintic Poetry based on?

In the Kingkiller books, Kvothe's friend Simmon studies Eld Vintic poetry. Here's an excerpt: Sought we the Scrivani word-work of Surthur Long-lost in ledger all hope forgotten Yet fast-found for ...
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1 vote
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Are the Black Terror and Knight-Wing based on any pre-existing fictional superheroes?

I just read the short story "The Black Terror Rides Again" by Thaddeus Howze. It's just a few-minutes read and much more interesting if you learn about the characters bit by bit through the ...
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6 votes
0 answers
192 views

Why is the protagonist of "Shortsighted" named Calvin Hobbes?

In the story "Shortsighted" by Thaddeus Howze, the protagonist's name is revealed to be Calvin Hobbes. This seems a reference to the well-known cartoon characters Calvin and Hobbes. Was this ...
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3 votes
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Viridis and felodon: shared worldbuilding?

A recent question in the "Hal Clement challenge" asked if there was any meaning or significance to the name "felodon", an amphibian carnivore with large fangs that featured in ...
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2 votes
0 answers
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Was Corman's The Day the World Ended cited as inspiration for 10 Cloverfield Lane?

The Corman movie has a man (and his daughter) living in a well-stocked house after a nuclear attack. However, unexpected people show up. In both movies, the "prepper" is ex-navy and Goodman ...
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10 votes
1 answer
204 views

Was Fenoglio based on any real author?

Cornelia Funke's fantasy series beginning with the novel Inkheart features a character named Fenoglio, an old man who wrote a fantasy novel called Inkheart. Was Fenoglio based on, or inspired by, any ...
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6 votes
0 answers
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Is "The Unsettling" inspired by "Manos: The Hands of Fate"?

In the TV series The Unsettling, the plot centers around a cult that worships a deity with heavy hand symbolism, in which the members are constantly saying that "the Hands that pull the strings&...
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30 votes
1 answer
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Was the name "Thanos" derived from "Thanatos", the name of the Greek god of death?

This is intended to be an out-of-universe question I recently learned of Thanatos the Greek god of death, and I could not help but notice how similar the name Thanos is to the name Thanatos. This got ...
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3 votes
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Does the name of Shub Niggurath contain or reference a racial slur?

I've always thought that the name of the Lovecraft deity Shub Niggurath was intended to sound vaguely Semitic, but I recently noticed that it seems to encode a certain well-known English-language ...
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-2 votes
1 answer
259 views

Where did Saleem Haddad get his idea from for the story, Song of the Birds?

In his short story, Songs of the Birds, Saleem Haddad writes: "Everything seems so still. You would never think that we are hurtling through the universe at a crazy speed." "What's ...
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9 votes
1 answer
591 views

Was Jean-Luc Picard inspired by Hornblower?

I have found the following in Fandom The Star Trek characters James T. Kirk and Jean-Luc Picard were originally also supposedly modelled after Hornblower by Gene Roddenberry. Nicholas Meyer, director ...
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6 votes
0 answers
182 views

Is the Orville's Dann inspired by Babylon 5's Narn?

I haven't watched The Orville, but while scrolling through a three-year-old answer I noticed a picture of an alien whom I quickly identified as the character called Dann. The reason why his appearance ...
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2 votes
1 answer
91 views

Did David Drake imitate Hornblower or Aubrey

Had David Drake said publicly if his Lt Leary series is a deliberate take off of either Hornblower or Jack Aubrey? It seems to have elements of both.
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12 votes
1 answer
3k views

Was the Tumbler Nolan's creation or did something similar already exist?

I've grown up with the Batmobile having the long front and a jet engine in order to be fast. They always slightly changed in design but had the general look I knew from the cartoons: Then, in Nolan's ...
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8 votes
0 answers
170 views

What was the inspiration for April O'Neils ultimate fate in the original TMNT Mirage comics?

I'm digging into the history of April O'Neil, and I've just found out how her story ends in the original Mirage comics, or if not 'ends' then a major story point for her. Was this at all inspired by ...
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3 votes
0 answers
211 views

Was Star Wars' Coruscant inpired by Isaac Asimov's Trantor? [duplicate]

They are both the Capitol of their respective Galactic Empire. Both Star Wars and Foundation trilogy have masters of the mind arts, Jedi and Psycohistorians.
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18 votes
1 answer
3k views

Did Total Recall inspire the famous red pill/blue pill scene?

In the 1990 film Total Recall, Dr. Edgemar tells Quaid he is suffering from a 'delusion caused by acute neurochemical trauma'; and the first step to wake up from this delusion is to swallow a red ...
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6 votes
2 answers
601 views

Was the Flame and the Void inspired by military techniques used in the Vietnam War?

I was reading recently about the US military assassin Carlos Hathcock, and specifically noticed the following: Hathcock once said that he survived in his work because of an ability to "get in the ...
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2 votes
0 answers
186 views

Does Shohobohaum Za character allude to the USSR?

The ambassador Shohobohaum Za in The Player of Games by Iain M. Banks shows the following features. He is a drunkard and has propensity to brawls – a known stereotype of a Russian. He dismantles a ...
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7 votes
1 answer
1k views

Is there a shared inspiration for the 7 Dwarfs of Snow White and the 7 Dwarves (that received rings of power) from Tolkien's writings?

In The Lord of the Rings Tolkien writes that 7 Dwarves were given rings. I know that Tolkien took a lot of inspiration from different sources including ancient fables and stories, tales of the Pagan ...
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42 votes
2 answers
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Did Lucille Ball have a creative influence on Star Trek?

There are many articles on the role that Lucille Ball had in saving Star Trek from an early death and how she advocated for the show in its early days. Was her role limited to funding, politics, and ...
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10 votes
2 answers
3k views

To what extent were the writers of Bill and Ted's aware of the TARDIS?

I mean, they're both time traveling phone booths.... Doctor Who obviously predates Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, but was also possibly quite obscure for Americans pre-Internet.
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3 votes
1 answer
205 views

Has a reason ever been given for the decision to use the name Martha?

Superman and Batman mother’s both have the same name, has any writer of these comics ever discussed the reason for this or is it just chance?
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2 votes
1 answer
528 views

Is the character Carrie Fisk from The Expanse inspired by Star Wars?

Persepolis Rising, the seventh book of The Expanse series, introduces and features a character named Carrie Fisk; she is the leader of the Do we know if she, or more specifically her name, was ...
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5 votes
2 answers
2k views

Why is her name Michael in Star Trek Discovery?

I see several explanations online, what was the true inspiration for the character's final production name "Michael Burnham?" Star Trek: Discovery's lead female role was initially announced under the ...
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-3 votes
1 answer
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Where did they get the name for Star Trek’s Q?

What inspired the god-like being Q introduced in Star Trek:The Next Generation Encounter at Farpoint? Where did the show's creators get the name and inspiration for Q's character?
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76 votes
1 answer
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Who or what inspired the character Geordi La Forge?

Fictional characters often are named and inspired by real people, for example Sonequa Martin-Green's character Michael Burnham is named after her character's biological father "Mike" Burnham. Where ...
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3 votes
0 answers
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Do the hypnotic moths in these works share a common origin?

In The Worst Witch TV series (2017), there's a creature called a hypnapillon. It's a moth, described as feeding off of people's "minds, fears, imagination," and it hypnotizes its prey with patterns on ...
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4 votes
1 answer
812 views

Were Hecate and Miss Cackle's personalities based on the books?

In the most recent iteration of the TV show The Worst Witch, two of the teachers are Hecate Hardbroom and the headmistress, Miss Ada Cackle. I couldn't help but notice that their personalities seemed ...
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8 votes
1 answer
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What is the meaning of this drawing of a combine soldier holding a baby next to the word 'Caste' in Half Life 2?

I used to play the Half Life games a few years ago, and among the many screenshots I had taken, here is the most questionable one: What is this picture about?
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-4 votes
1 answer
627 views

Meaning behind DC Raven's "Rachael Roth" name?

If you swap letters "CH" and "TH" and remove the "a" from "Rachael Roth" you get the words "Rathel Roch" which according to wikitionary "Rathel" has two meanings it's related to "raddle" which is ...
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5 votes
1 answer
375 views

Is there an intended relation between Baal and R'hllor?

In Essos, we see many worshipers of the Lord of Light, also known as R'hllor. In Israel, time of Ahab, we see many worshipers of Baal, the personification of the sun. I'm wondering. Baal worshipers ...
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6 votes
1 answer
216 views

What historical event was "A Grand Tour" in the Honorverse based on?

In the anthology More Than Honor (An anthology in the Honorverse, edited by David Weber), there is an author's note following A Grand Tour (By David Drake) claiming that the events are based on ...
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4 votes
2 answers
800 views

Are Hogwarts houses based on real life UK? [duplicate]

It’s been referred several times that Rowling modelled Hogwarts after standard UK structure for schools, which makes sense given she attended those. Stuff like OWLS and NEWTs are modelled around ...
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