I have been playing Wizard 101 off and on since 2009 and I’ve been a devoted player since 2016. One of the things that I enjoy about the game are the many Pop Culture references that the writers have included in the game. When the world of Lemuria was released, I decided to chronicle the many references to the Pulp Heroes of the early 20th century. That fun little project made me wonder if there was a comprehensive list of ALL the pop culture references across the game. In my research I have found a number of such lists but nothing definitive. This article is the first in a series where in I try to identify as many pop culture references as possible.
Please note, this list does not claim to be every reference. I have undoubtedly missed some. I am also not chronicling the many references in Quest Names or Spells. This series will focus on creatures and NPCs. If you know of one I missed, please comment and I will update the list accordingly. As of June 30, 2022 all articles for Wizard City have been posted. On August 12, 2022 three new articles were added. They will be archived soon. If I have missed any please leave a comment and we will add them to our list and give you the credit for finding it.
Merle Ambrose – Merlin the Magician – Merlinus Ambrosius
Aegon Statz – Ghostbusters, Egon Spengler and Ray Stantz
Penny Dreadful – penny dreadful
Doctor Purreau – Doctor Moreau
The Pet Shoppe Boys: Tennant Wastelander & Lowe Springfield – Pet Shop Boys: Neil Tennant & Chris Lowe
Dorothy Gale, Mr. Toto, and Tin Man – Dorothy, Toto, and the Tin Man from Wizard of Oz
Private O’Ryan – Private Ryan (Saving Private Ryan)
Brandon Mistborn – Brandon Sanderson, the author of the Mistborn epic fantasy novel series.
Klortho – Vinz Clortho, Keymaster of Gozer
Lloyd Fallingwater – Frank Lloyd Wright
Professor Hargrove – A former KingsIsle Art Director. Out of respect for the family his full name will not be disclosed
Marla Stinger wants you to Fight Grubb – Marla Singer from Fight Club
Paulson – Robert Paulson
Norton – The Narrator as played by Edward Norton
Go Ninja, Go Ninja, Go!
Staff – Stick, Splinter
Purple Ninja Pig – Donatello
Orange Ninja Pig – Michelangelo
Red Ninja Pig – Raphael
Blue Ninja Pig – Leonardo
The Shedder – Shredder
B-Bug/Roachsteady — Beebop/Rocksteady
King Heinrich Thermidor VIII – Henry Tudor aka King Henry VIII
Thomas Cromshell – Thomas Cromwell
Sir Phillip Jagger – Sir Michael Philip “Mick” Jagger
Privates Rosencranz and Guildenstern – Rosencrantz and Guildenstern (Shakespeare’s Hamlet)
Sergeant Muldoon – Sergeant Muldoon (The Green Berets 1968)
Artemis New Moon – Artemis, goddess of the hunt
Unconfirmed references, Non-NPC references, Cool Puns used:
Moolinda Wu refers to the name of an actual person, Melinda Wu (connection to W101 unconfirmed)
Derrick Blaze – (Make-a-Wish kid, real name withheld for privacy reasons)
Fireglobe Theater – Shakespeare’s The Globe Theater
The pet piggle is a reference to that old saying “when pigs fly”
The school Tree names are quite punny, Bernie = Burn, Kelvin = Measure of temperature used by scientists, Torrence = Torrents, Ivan = Eye-Van, Mortis = as in rigormortis
Prof. Falmea‘s name is an anagram of “aflame“
The Great One – The Killer Rabbit from Monty Python’s Holy Grail? Bunnicula? I currently do not have enough information to accurately call this reference.