Name trend realization - Theodore tugboat

[name_m]Hi[/name_m] all - Today I realized I have met multiple babies this year with the names [name_m]Theodore[/name_m], [name_f]Emily[/name_f], [name_m]George[/name_m] and [name_m]Hank[/name_m]. And more importantly those are 4 of 5 tugboats on the show [name_m]Theodore[/name_m] Tugboat that I grew up watching. (The 5th is Foduck, so I doubt we’ll see his revival soon).

I’d love to hear your thoughts on how TV shows influence names.

Similarly, [name_m]Thomas[/name_m] the tank engine includes: [name_m]Thomas[/name_m], [name_u]Percy[/name_u], [name_m]Edward[/name_m], [name_m]Henry[/name_m], [name_m]Gordon[/name_m], [name_f]Emily[/name_f], [name_u]James[/name_u], [name_u]Toby[/name_u].

This is a subject that’s really interesting to me, though so much of it is just speculation. Rarely can you confidently declare that “a” show is directly responsible for a surge in names, because there are so many other societal factors at play.

That said, when you see a sudden surge of something like… [name_f]Renesmee[/name_f] come out of nowhere and suddenly people are naming their babies that, it’s kind of obvious. Classics are harder to track down. Yes, there’s an [name_m]Edward[/name_m] in Twilight, but there’s also [name_m]Edward[/name_m] in [name_m]Thomas[/name_m] the Tank Engine, and it will have been heard around more, so it’s difficult, if not impossible, to pinpoint one of those. In the U.S. [name_f]Emily[/name_f] has hung on at or near the tops of the charts for at least twenty years, only to be replaced by soundalike updates like [name_f]Emma[/name_f]. So not really a surge there, it has been a classic for a long time. A lot of those other classics like [name_m]Theodore[/name_m], [name_u]James[/name_u], [name_m]Henry[/name_m], and [name_m]George[/name_m] are enjoying a revival, but again - how much is due to exposure the parents had to it as kids, how much is the fact that a new generation of parents now don’t automatically think of these as “Grandpa Names” anymore, so you potentially have that “Hundred Year [name_m]Rule[/name_m]” in play, too.

Always interesting to think about, though!

My partner is pretty convinced that half the names I find people talking about on here are popular because of video games, I’m pretty convinced that it’s coincidental but it is weird how many names pop up here that are in video games, I can’t remember a lot of them right now but at least once a week I see a name mentioned a few times which I can directly relate to a game:

[name_f]Andromeda[/name_f] : Mass Effect
[name_u]Juniper[/name_u]: [name_m]Elder[/name_m] Scrolls Skyrim

I’ll add more as I think of them/find them but there has been a bunch.

This is interesting – [name_f]Andromeda[/name_f] was a serious consideration for us 2 years ago (didn’t win out), but neither my husband or I are familiar with that game. It was on the list because of the new deep-space images of the [name_f]Andromeda[/name_f] galaxy that were released around that time.

My partner is convinced the resurgenge of [name_m]Santiago[/name_m] and similar names our friends and contemporaries are using for their babies is due to the movie ¡Gol!. But I think [name_m]Santiago[/name_m] and other knighltly-spaniard-oldman names are fashionable in my country where previously you mostly had [name_m]Juan[/name_m], [name_m]Pedro[/name_m], [name_m]Jos[/name_m]é and some hispanizations of “USA names” because the girls of my generation grew up watching more Argentinian and Spanish novelas, and in those countries those names never really left.

But seriously, SOOOOOO many Santiagos and Mateos.

This is interesting, and definitely true in some instances (like the recent discussion of Vexahlia, or [name_u]Robin[/name_u] [name_m]Williams[/name_m] naming his daughter [name_f]Zelda[/name_f] after the gaming franchise). However, I’d say that more often than not it’s the other way round: game designers choosing on-trend, slightly ahead-of-the-curve monikers for the cool factor they hold. I think video game usage generally just reflects or at most slightly boosts names that were on the up anyway.

In response to the OP, TV definitely does influence naming trends, but as @saracita said, with the classics or historically widely known and used names like [name_m]Hank[/name_m], it’s unlikely (and certainly unmeasurable) that a TV programme like [name_m]Theodore[/name_m] Tugboat or [name_m]Thomas[/name_m] the Tank Engine is the reason for certain names’ resurgence. It definitely helps that people are familiar and comfortable with the names, but more likely is that it’s just “time” for these names to come round again. Call it the 100 Year [name_m]Rule[/name_m], or just the ebb and flow of name trends, but fashion in names is demonstrably cyclical and the examples you list are perfectly on-trend examples of that.