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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30
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1answer
6k views

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 ...
2
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0answers
191 views

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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1answer
179 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 ...
8
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1answer
438 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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0answers
104 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 ...
12
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1answer
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 ...
3
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168 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.
18
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1answer
1k 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 ...
6
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2answers
318 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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123 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 ...
7
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1answer
951 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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2answers
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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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2answers
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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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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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2answers
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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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1answer
963 views

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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1answer
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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 ...
3
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0answers
96 views

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 ...
4
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1answer
594 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 ...
8
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1answer
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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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1answer
219 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 ...
4
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1answer
350 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 ...
5
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1answer
176 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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2answers
645 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 ...
3
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1answer
296 views

Is Zam Wesell inspired by early Ralp McQuarrie Concept Art of Han Solo & Starkiller Hero?

I was recently looking at some early McQuarrie concept art (and my 30th anniversary action figures based on them) commissioned for George Lucas' second draft, which would eventually become A New Hope. ...
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1answer
320 views

Is the way wizard duel in Harry Potter based on fencing?

As in how they (like fencing) put their wand up to their face before they duel and how they have their stance.
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164 views

Did Douglas Adams get the idea of communication/alien dolphins from “Stationary Orbit” by Peter Macey?

Inspired by this question/answer. Given that the novel by Macey was written four years prior to the first broadcast of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and subsequent novelization, is there any ...
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156 views

Is Lord Grant based on an actual Jazz musician?

In Ben Aaronovitch’s Rivers of London series, Peter, the main character, has a father (Lord Grant) who was repeatedly almost famous. There are enough hints and descriptions of the various events, that ...
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3answers
634 views

Where did the idea of using bottle caps as money come from?

Being a fan of both the DuckTales and the Fallout series, I have only recently noticed that in the former there was an episode The Land of Trala La where the main characters introduce a concept of ...
9
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1answer
430 views

Where did the Prime Directive come from?

The Prime Directive is the main principle that Starfleet/the Federation follows, barring them from interfering with the development of another less developed civilization. The question I am asking is ...
10
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1answer
2k views

Was Edna Mode's “No Capes!” rule inspired by Dollar Bill?

In The Incredibles, Edna Marie "E" Mode" famously voices her opinion on capes. These examples are hardly the first cases of what TV Tropes calls a "cape snag". (...
2
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1answer
258 views

What is the significance of the Red Lotus?

The theme of a Red Lotus seems to show up in various fantasy works. For instance: In Ice Fantasy, where the Red Lotus seems to a magical flower of great power. In The Legend of Korra, where it is an ...
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Does this “collecting royal souls” plotline have a common origin?

A few works seem to share a rather specific plotline, regarding the collection of the souls of various royal bloodlines. For instance, in The Bone Witch and its sequels, by Rin Chupeco, part of the ...
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3answers
751 views

Are there any clear predecessors to the idea from Harry Potter of wands with special cores?

It now seems like a common idea, perhaps one with a long reaching tradition. But my Google results seem to be solely dominated by Harry Potter references. I've found references to wands with different ...
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3answers
10k views

Were any Star Wars aliens based on national stereotypes?

Many reviews and scholars have suggested that George Lucas seems to have based certain species in Star Wars human ethnicities, and particularly on stereotypes thereof. For instance, the Toydarians (...
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0answers
219 views

Did Iain Banks ever acknowledge Hermann Hesse as an inspiration?

To an outside observer it seems that the game of Azad, from the empire of the same name featured heavily in The Player of Games, bears strong similarities to the Glass Bead Game from Hesse's 1943 ...
2
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1answer
327 views

Does Captain Ronald Tracey resemble a particular figure from U.S. history? [closed]

In the Star Trek episode "TOS: Whom Gods Destroy" (1969), I consider the character Garth a George Washington figure (whether consciously intended or not). He was a great military leader; also, his "...
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1answer
113 views

The traitor Bamu Cormorant - historical inspiration for the “favorite method”?

In The Traitor Bamu Cormorant a significant development near the end happens when Has there been an historical analog to this?
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287 views

Was the Monks storyline a Brexit metaphor?

TV Tropes claims that the Monks storyline on Doctor Who (seen in "The Pyramid at the End of the World," etc.) is an allegory for Brexit: ...the actual Who Brexit allegory story (the Monks trilogy) ...
3
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0answers
107 views

Inspiration for Ulysses 31?

What surprised me most about Ulysses 31 was its use of Greek mythology in a futuristic setting. For example, the protagonists encountered Zeus (amongst other mythological characters): What inspired ...
6
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1answer
508 views

Did Robert Heinlein write about his real-life cats?

Robert Heinlein must have known and loved many cats. Pete, in The Door into Summer is a fully realized character, and Pixel in two of the Lazarus Long books is also memorable. The title of The Door ...
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1answer
228 views

Do Aes Sedai wear tallitot?

The tallit is a Jewish garb, which has a lot of resemblance to the Aes Sedai shawl: It's a shawl It's got fringes The fringes are (or at least were) dyed blue However, I couldn't find any reference ...
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2answers
736 views

Identifying a story similar to Black Mirror “Christmas Special” episode

I'm trying to identify a short story on which the Black Mirror episode "White Christmas" might have been based. Or at least is very similar. In the story, the protagonist was regularly visiting a ...
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5answers
9k views

Are there any real-life parallels to the Night's Watch and their fall from prestige? [closed]

In A Song of Ice and Fire (and also in the series Game of Thrones), the Night's Watch is a peculiar institution: Regardless of its actual usefulness, it serves a supposedly "vital" function which was ...
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1answer
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Is Ender's game inspired by 1984?

I read Ender's Game recently and found that Ender reminded me of Winston in 1984. I was wondering if this was a coincidence or not.
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3answers
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Was the mythology in “Moana” based on an established myth?

I just recently finished watching the film Moana. The plot includes the Realm of Monsters, complete with upside down giant crabs, a shape-shifting demigod with a magical hook, a giant lava monster, a ...
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2answers
245 views

What was one of the inspiration sources of Harry Potter? [closed]

I wanted to know this because I was curious what triggered J.K. Rowling to write this.
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1answer
156 views

Is the Fuaran based on a real-world legend?

Sergei Lukyanenko's Night Watch series already has some links to real-world mythology via the character of Gesar, and possibly also Zabulon. This made me wonder about the in-universe legend of the ...
4
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1answer
162 views

What influenced the novel 'Definitely Maybe' by the Strugatsky's?

For those who have read Definitely Maybe by the Strugatsky brothers or know a bit about 1970's Russia, the Brezhnev Era or how the Mikhail Kheifets case with Boris Strugatsky testifying as a witness: ...
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0answers
128 views

Where does this rhyme about Quatermass come from?

I found this rhyme about Quatermass II. I'm trying to find out who wrote it and whether there's an expanded version somewhere. Does the rhyme have a real-world origin? There was a man from outer ...

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