"Six men came to kill me one time, and the best of them carried this. It's a Callahan Full-bore Auto-lock. Customized trigger, double cartridge, thorough gauge. This is my very favorite gun... I call it 'Vera'."
Character profiles for Weiß Kreuz reveal that Aya's katana is named Shion, after his former teacher. Weiss being the sort of series that it is, Aya is eventually obliged to kill his weapon's namesake.
Kino of Kino's Journey names her guns. "The Woodsman", "The Cannon", and "The Flute".
Guts in Berserk has his sword, the Dragon Slayer. This wouldn't count except that there are no dragons in the Berserk universe (unless you count Grunbeld in Apostle form); the sword was merely designed so that it could slay one if there were. Later chapters showed a dragon sitting on a castle tower, so the Dragon Slayer might eventually come to earn its name.
In Slayers Try, Filia has a mace named "Mace-sama".
Revy from Black Lagoon refers to both of her custom Berettas as her Sword Cutlasses, which is fitting, seeing as she is a modern-day pirate.
Genkaku from Deadman Wonderland calls his double machine gun electric guitar "Flying V" very affectionately. It receives better treatment than pretty much all other humans he interacts with.
Which is a bit redundant, since Flying V is the model of the guitar.
Another good anime example of this trope is found in Patlabor. In the Patlabor anime, Police Officer Noa Izumi affectionately names her giant police robot 'Alphonse' for some unspecified reason. Her fellow police officers are quite dismayed by her naming choice and her loving devotion to her mecha. It's what she's named all her childhood pets. Labor Alphonse is Alphonse III, with the first two being her cat and dog.
Not to mention Hunting Rifle Maximilian and the Double-Barreled Rotwoski.
In the manga Double Arts, the resident Blood Knight Sui had a hoola hoop made of solid iron that she uses in battle. She calls it Avis.
Gundam is all up in this trope. Every single Gundam has its own unique name, and a ton of the weapons get names in the profile pages.
In Gundam 00, Graham Aker (AKA Mister Bushido) named the beamkatana wielded by his mobile suit Masurao "Howard" and "Daryl" in honor of his former wingmen.
Modern Vehicles do all have official names (Abrahms, Osprey, Blackhawk, etc.) and the mass-production MS are named similarly. Gundams just happen to be unique custom high-performance units with a unique name.
Justified in Gundam SEED where all the Gundams are treated (or at least labeled) as Prototypes, and their names are likely intended to be the official name of that series. Of course, with the exception of the Strike, Duel, Buster, and the Astray Red Frame, none of the other Gundam designs are mass produced.
Chang Wufei of Gundam Wing is particularly notable, in that he gave his Mobile Suit an additional, personal name after his dead wife besides its official one. In fact, he uses it so often that some fans think that "Nataku" is the mobile suit's actual name, rather than Shenlong (original MS) or Altron (upgraded MS).
In Battle Angel Alita: Last Order, one character in the Zenith Tournament use a BFS which he named Dizaster. It does live up to its name, given that it is capable of taking down SPACESHIPS
The main character Train from Black Cat wields the Hades, a revolver made of Orihalcon, capable of blocking regular bullets and later functioning as a RAILGUN
Midvalley the Hornfreak on Trigun named his saxophone Sylvia. And even without the machine-gun capacity, she is the deadliest sax ever.
Several of the girls of K-On! names their instruments. Yui, being very original, names her guitar "Gitah," Mio calls her bass "Elizabass" (taking up a name originated by Yui), and Azusa names her mustang guitar "Mu-tan". No word yet on Ritsu's drums or Mugi's keyboard.
In Strike Witches Season 2, Mio Sakamoto has "Reppumaru". It's a Katana she forged using magic, capable of slicing through Neuroi attacks to compensate for her lack of shields.
Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu plays it for laughs. Sousuke becomes the coach to the high school's rugby team, whose members are all of the Gentle Giant type, and takes them to the woods and puts them through The Spartan Way. In a Shout-Out to Full Metal Jacket, each member is given a rugby ball and told that they must love the rugby ball as a girlfriend. They all start to carefully clean the balls calling then foreign female names, in an absolutely creepy scene.
Bleach: Subverted. Ichigo thinks this trope is in effect when Renji asks him his sword's name, regarding it as ridiculous sentimentality. However, he learns the hard way the trope that's actually in effect is Named Weapons, as it's extremely important for all shinigami to commune with their named swords to achieve their full potential. Once Ichigo learns his own sword's name, he becomes far more powerful.
In Kill la Kill, Ryuuko's sailor uniform, Senketsu, is actually sentient. However, it veers into this trope since she's the only person able to properly communicate with him, so it initially comes off as a very lonely girl talking to a piece of clothing to her adoptive family.
Marv from Sin City has a Colt 1911A1 by the name of Gladys, which he named after one of the nuns from his school days. According to Marv, the gun has almost lived up to its name.
Buck Godot calls his pistol "Junior". So do Smith and Wesson, a pair of entirely sentient AI zap guns belonging to a Space Pirate who goes by the name "the Pistol Packin' Polaris Packrat". It's probably the gun's actual name, although it isn't an AI and therefore doesn't talk (or if it is, it doesn't have much to say. Well, other than ZOWNT). A distinctly imposing rifle with "Senior" inscribed on its side is also shown to be in his possession, although if there's ever been a situation where Junior wasn't sufficient, we haven't seen it yet.
The Dragunov sniper rifle of Natalya Zamyatin from Y: The Last Man is named Rodya, after her husband killed in the plague.
In one of the Cable & Deadpool comics, Deadpool is in Rumekistan shooting people and his gun says "Deadpool's Gun" on it, with the little Deadpool emblem. So...well, he didn't really name it, but he did label it (also, in one of the issues Cable has a BFG named after Liefeld, as an in-joke on the way Liefeld used to draw ridiculously giant guns).
Captain America's shield seems to be named Shield in Steve's head. He loves that shield. He also once referred to it as "she", but when a rescued scientist asked about its name, Cap retorted, "Do you have a name for your right arm?" Naturally, the shield was lost at the end of the issue and later destroyed. It got better.
Bob Hertzog in Knights of the Dinner Table names pretty much every single one of his (numerous) dice. At least, every die that has stood out in some manner. Knowing the behavior of rather hardcore gamers, this probably isn't too much of an exaggeration from real life.
In Suicide Squad, Briscoe nicknames the team's helicopter gunship 'Sheba'. After his dead daughter.
In Swamp Thing, when the plant-human hybrid the Floronic Man goes on a homicidal rampage in Louisiana, a Houma resident attempts to cut him down with his chainsaw, nicknamed "Evangeline."
Negan, the new villain of The Walking Dead, carries a barbed-wire-wrapped baseball bat that he affectionately calls "Lucille" (possibly as a B.B. King reference.) He then cements his role as the bad guy by bashing longtime fan favorite Glenn's skull into the pavement with "her."
One of Puke and Snot's routines involves the two men in a duel.
Puke: "Name your weapon."
Snot: (looks at his sword for a second) "Alright, I name mine Wally. (Beat) Now you name yours."
Puke: "I will not. (Beat) Mainly because I can't beat Wally."
The events of Fallout: Equestria find the protagonist, Littlepip, finding Applejack's revolver in a ruined building, named Lil' Macintosh.
In HHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH, Harry's demonic guitar is named Fuckslayer. That probably tells you everything you could possibly wish to know about the fic.
In The Rules, Switzerland calls his guns Urs and Verena.
In Uplifted, Tank Commander Dieter Hertzer affectionately calls his Tiger Prototype "Sigrid". Sigrid is later sacrificed, causing Hetzer to shed some tears. In the next fic it's revealed that Rommel assigned him a New Tiger, which is called 'Sigrid II'. This is not so much out of the goodness of Rommel's heart, but because he has no use for clunky over engineered tanks.
Referenced but ultimately subverted in Lantern Prime. Optimus tells Ganthet he misses his VERA, and then explains it is his gun, not another Autobot. When the Guardian asks if he named his weapon, Optimus explains VERA is an acronym for Variable Energy Release Armament.
In Hard Reset, Twilight names the baseball she uses to kill changelings "Home Run".
Hackers. Joey gives the name "Lucy" to his computer, which the character would consider a weapon.
Hellboy's weapon of choice is a huge gun, which shoots bullets containing Holy water, Garlic or silver. He calls it The Good Samaritan. In Hellboy II, Hellboy's new weapon is the 'Big Baby,' which is a large shotgun with six barrels. "Aww, you woke up the Baby!"
In the movie Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, two of the cannons on the HMS Surprise have names scribed on their side, "Jumping Billy" and "Sudden Death".
During filming of Spider-Man 2, Alfred Molina nicknamed Dr. Octopus' four tentacles (clockwise from top left) Larry, Harry, Moe, and Flo to help him keep the action straight.
Dear Wendy, a film written by Lars von Trier, is ALL about this trope. Every member of the Dandies weapon club names their gun/s and treats their gun/s as if it is their partner - if a Dandy uses another's gun instead of his/her own, it's as if they are a cheating partner. The film is structured with an ongoing narrator in the form of a letter to Wendy. About halfway through the movie we realize Wendy is the main character's pistol.
Iron Man 2 has Hammer's bunker-buster mini-missile he calls "the Ex-wife".
In Dragonslayer, the titular spear's name in Latin is Sicarious Dracorum.
From Paris with Love: Charlie Wax calls his Sig Sauer X-5 Mrs. Jones. He goes through a lot of trouble to smuggle it into France at the beginning of the film even though he could have requested any weapon he wanted once he met up with his local CIA contact.
Played for laughs in The Rundown, wherein Travis attempts to intimidate his foes by implying phenomenal martial arts skills by wriggling his feet, first one, then the other, while telling them that the one is called Thunder and the Other is Lightning. In reality, he's trying to intimidate them enough that they won't fight him because he doesn't know any martial arts at all.
Despite leaning heavily towards the Real Robot of science fiction, this is fairly common in the Battletech universe, especially the novels. This is probably inspired by the nicknaming of vehicles in the military during real world wars. In the novels focused on the Gray Death Legion, conspicuously Scottish Davis McCall has named his Rifleman 'Mech "Bannockburn"; Lori Kalmar-Carlyle's ancient but faithful Shadow Hawk goes by "Boss Lady". There's also the "Yen Lo Wan", a Centurion. Somewhat subverted in Endgame when Katrina Steiner snidely comments on her brother Victor Steiner-Davion having named his Dire Wolf/Daishi "Prometheus". (She then mocks a nearby guard who commented he named his gun Tabitha.) Weirdly, this seems slightly less common in the Clans, despite their using OmniMechs (a subtype of Humongous Mecha that are easily customized into unique variants) and have a culture that venerates warriors and honorable combat, but it can happen. Natasha Kerensky, the legendary Black Widow, calls her custom Daishi "Widowmaker".
Jean Tannen, The Lancer in The Lies of Locke Lamora, names his paired hatchets the Wicked Sisters. He makes a joke about the name when he has to fight a pair of female twins.
Although no actual names are mentioned, the proud warrior race of the Fremen in the Dune series have very close relationships with their knives. When the main character mentions they sound "pretty ferocious" prior to meeting any, his father responds "By all accounts. They compose poems to their knives".
It is later revealed that a stranger who carries a fremen knife would be accepted in any fremen community.
According to El Cantar del Mio Cid, Rodrigo Diaz had two swords: "La Tizona" and "La Colada".
Averted by Mercedes Lackey in her Heralds of Valdemar series. Fighters operate under the philosophy that one weapon is as good as another; the only sword which has a name is an Empathic Weapon which turns out to be a woman's spirit contained in a sword. Several main characters give their musical instruments names, however.
Defied in Exile's Honor, when Alberich is a weapons instructor in Karse. If a student ever named his weapon, the weapon was either melted down (if it belonged to the school) or returned to the student's home (if it belonged to the student), the student being prohibited from using it.
Somewhat subverted but mostly played straight in her Tales of the Five Hundred Kingdoms series, where having a named weapon (say, Galgraling the Wyrm Slayer) will invoke Tradition (the ambient magic in the land) and give you an advantage should you meet an actual Wyrm. Champions, however, do not name their swords — they can make any blade magical.
In Saberhagen's Book of Swords series, the swords have names, though this is more a case of Named Weapons, since the names are not personal nicknames but were given by their creator (the god Vulcan) before distributing them throughout the world.
A Justified Trope in Dragaera's Taltos series; Vlad calls his Great Weapon, Godslayer "Lady Teldra". The reason, in addition to the fact that he considers the actual name melodramatic, is that it contains the soul of its namesake.
There's also "Spellbreaker", a length of chain with the Anti-Magic property of breaking any spell it hits. Vlad named it not because of sentimental attachment or mental instability, but because he was told that it would be a good idea to give it a name.
The Long Ships by Frans G. Bengtsson features a pair of vikings who name their favorite swords "Bluetongue" and "Redbeak".
In Peter Pan, Mr Smee has named his sword "Johnny Corkscrew", because of the way he uses it.
Also featured is the pirates' massive cannon "Long Tom", said to be large enough to launch a fully grown Indian out of. Also mentioned in passing in the movie Hook, and shown many times in the animated Peter Pan & the Pirates series, where it is portrayed as being decorated in the style of a white tiger.
In the Dave Barry/Ridley Pearson Peter Pan novel Peter and the Starcatchers, Captain Hook deployed a special sail rigging he named "The Ladies". This specific sail was modeled after a woman's bustier, and supposedly increased his ship's speed.
J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle-earth mostly uses Named Weapons instead of this trope. But "Sting" is only a nickname for the elven knife Bilbo found back in The Hobbit; after killing some Giant Spiders with it, he decided that a weapon that formidable should be named. (In the movie adaptation of The Lord of the Rings, this has become an official name, identified with a runic inscription.)
In the Rhapsody series of books, Elizabeth Haydon has Grunthor — a giant Bolg — name all of his weapons, because he says it makes them work better. With the exception of "Friendmaker," a huge polearm that gets its name because "When people see it, they'd much rather be my friend than my enemy," most of his weapons are named after various prostitutes he's known.
In the famous Civil War memoir Company H, the author mentions a fellow soldier who "had the brightest gun in the army, and always called Florence Fleming".
Mona and Delilah are the cars owned by Joanna in the Weather Wardens series by Rachel Caine.
Reason in Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash. Used as a source of wordplay: "I know they'll listen to Reason".
This trope is out in force in the Memory Sorrowand Thorn series by Tad Williams. Besides the titular swords themselves, just about every major character has a name for their favorite sword, spear, or miscellaneous implement of death.
Brandon Sanderson's Warbreaker also has a sentient sword called "Nightblood".
In Heinlein'sTunnel in the Sky both the main protagonist and his sister have foot-long Bowie-knives that they've named. The sister's is "Lady Macbeth". The protagonist's knife is called Colonel Bowie, showing an unfortunate lack of creativity on his part. Glory Road has Lady Vivamus, explicitly introduced as being just like the next example.
Another Heinlein example, though not about a weapon this time. In his Juvenile novel Have Spacesuit Will Travel, the main character names his titular suit Oscar and has conversations with it. In one particular case, it even gives him a pep talk as he lays dying on the surface of Pluto. Note that though it's never mentioned outright, there's no indication that he actually believes he's talking to his suit.
In Fritz Leiber's Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser series, Fafhrd wields a sword he calls Greywand, while his partner, the Grey Mouser, wields a sword and a dagger he calls Scalpel and Cat's Claw. However, Fafhrd calls any sword he happens to be carrying Greywand, and whatever sword and dagger The Mouser wields become Scalpel and Cat's Claw. They go through many, many, many of these over the course of the stories, and therefore this is perhaps a purer example of the trope than many of the other examples: Fafhrd's sword is called "Graywand" not because of any special properties it has, but simply because that's what he calls it.
In Garth Nix's Old Kingdom series, Lirael's sword Nehima keeps changing its own inscription every time she looks at it.
The Bazil Broketail series seems to take the military training route; humans don't name any of their weapons, but nearly every dragon soldier seems to have named their personal blade, whether or not it's enchanted.
The Heir series by Cinda Williams Chima has Warrior hero Jack uncover the legendary magical sword of his ancestor, which is named Shadowslayer. His girlfriend Ellen, also a Warrior, later acquires a similar one named Waymaker.
Beowulf used the sword Hrunting against Grendel's mother, given to him by Unferth.
Mack Bolan's preferred hand weapons are named "Big Thunder" (a stainless steel .44 AutoMag), and "Belle", his silenced Beretta Brigadier (a civilian Beretta 92S). The spin-off series Able Team has "Lyon's Crowd-Killing Device", a modified Atchisson Assault Shotgun wielded by 'Ironman' Carl Lyons.
The Avenger, pulp hero, late 30s - early 40s: Ike (throwing knife) and Mike (revolver).
Nick Carter has three main weapons, all of which he's named. Wilhelmina is his stripped-down German Luger, Hugo is his stiletto, and the gas-bomb that he uses is called Pierre.
Hoppy Uniatz uses his Betsy to bop people. And yes, he genuinely talks like that.
Keladry, the next female knight, names the sword Alanna gave her "Griffin".
For a brief while near the (publishing-order) beginning of the Redwall series, the Sword of Martin the Warrior was dubbed "Ratdeath". Apparently Brian Jacques realized that really isn't a good name, and thus it underwent retcon. In later books, it has no real name, but "Sword" tends to be capitalized when you talk about it.
In River of Dancing Gods by Jack L. Chalker, the hero names his magic sword "Irving," after his estranged son.
Steven Boyette's Ariel, set in post-civilization, the young hero considers several poetic names for the sword he finds and learns to use, but ultimately settles on "Fred". It's short, sweet, and does the job.
Night Watch referenced the above "Smith and Wesson" line when Vimes pulls a crossbow and says "Meet my friends, Mr. Burleigh and Mr. Stronginthearm." The threat falls flat, however, because Vimes is back in time before those weapon-makers went into business, so nobody has any idea what he's talking about.
Sergeant Detritus, a troll officer of the watch, commonly carries a weapon that Vimes refers to as The Piecemaker. It's a siege crossbow and fires many, many bolts at once. The name is descriptive of what happens to anything Detritus discharges it at... and also to anything that happens to be near what he's aiming at. Vimes notes that it's the one weapon the Watch has that can blow a house's front and back doors open with the same shot.
In Laurell Hamilton's Merry Gentry series all of the magical weapons are named: Winter's Kiss, Mortal Dread, a couple magical rings and Doyle's twin daggers (which are only known by their nicknames—snick and snack).
In The Riftwar Cycle, there's a throwaway line about the type of crossbow used by the Hadati hill people, which is called the Bessie Mauler. No one's quite sure why it's named after Bessie, but it's certainly a mauler. They're normally used to hunt wyverns, the smaller, less fire-breathing-y cousins of dragons. You'd expect some other named weapons in a fantasy series, but if any have names, they're never mentioned.
In the Phryne Fisher novel Murder in the Dark, the assassin known as the Joker has named all of his knives. The one he attempts to use on Phryne is named 'Eleanor', after his mother.
In Slaughter's Way by J.T. Edson, Coonskin has a double-barrelled eight-gauge shotgun he calls 'Betsy Two-Eyes'.
Havilar in Brimstone Angelsreally like her glaive and keeps trying to come up with a cool-sounding name for it. She starts out with "Kidney Carver" (too mundane), switches to "Eater of Her Enemies' Livers" (too much of a mouthful) and ends up settling on "Devilslayer".
Averted in the Star Trek novel Time for Yesterday; when Kirk asks the name of a sword, the wielder says that it doesn't have one, and, cynically, that if he were so inclined he'd just call it Killer, since that's what it's for.
Live Action TV
The trope is named for Jayne's very favorite gun from Firefly. It has extreme sentimental value. The fact that he views his own proposal to swap it for Mal's "wife" in "Our Mrs. Reynolds" as theft is pretty telling. "Vera" itself is an Izhmash Saiga-12 conversion originally built for the movie Showtime.
Jayne: It's miles better'n what you got!
Mal: "What I got?" She has a name!
Jayne: So does this!
The fact that in "Heart of Gold" he snuggles up with his gun instead of a real woman is pretty telling.
In a lot of Firefly fanfic, Jayne does this with all his weapons. In one interview, Adam Baldwin, Jayne's actor, stated that Jayne's knife is named "Binky" and his pistol "Boo", though neither name is used in the series proper, probably because the series got canceled before he got around to letting others know.
In Serenity, Jayne uses another gun with a name, a submachine gun by the name of "Lux". It was named after a poster on the Firefly message boards, LuxLucre, who died tragically of pneumonia shortly after the feature film Serenity was announced. According to the novelization, that submachine gun was called "Phoebe".
In Happy Endings, while they're not a weapon, Brad reveals that he's named his sweatpants 'Karen'.
In Farscape, John Crichton names his most reliable pulse pistol "Winona". It gets to the point where if Winona misfires he automatically assumes it's because he didn't properly maintain her (which, as any gun enthusiast can probably tell you, isn't that unreasonable a belief). A lampshade is hung about this at one point in the episode "John Quixote": "That's a nice sword... You should give it a name, like 'Cameron' or 'Uma'."
Ernie "Turtleman" Brown, Jr. on Call Of The Wildman carries a huge Bowie knife he calls "Thunder", which he uses for everything from shaving to prying open the jaws of a snapping turtle when bitten by them.
In Roman Mysteries, the door-slave (and former gladiator) Caudex has a gladius he calls "Flora"; named, we are told, after an ex-girlfriend with a sharp tongue.
In an episode of the sitcom Unhappily Ever After, the mother gets a glass table, which she makes everyone call Sheila.
When doing cannon-related myths, the Mythbusters crew borrows a cannon that the owner has named "Old Moses", as it "speaks with a great voice and lays down the Law". This is a common thing to do with cannons - one preacher-turned-artilleryman during the Civil War named four guns "Matthew", "Mark", "Luke" and "John" for the same reason. The Mythbusters themselves engage this trope when they acquire a car (for doing car myths, naturally) and name it "Earl," named just because it seemed like an appropriate name for a large, black Cadillac.
Stephen Colbert has a Colt Detective Special that he calls "Sweetness" that he frequently is seen talking to...and that he sometimes thinks is talking to him. He's had some... interesting... conversations with it. (Inside joke: Colbert is deaf in his right ear IRL; he always listens to "Sweetness" on that side.)
Played with in Sledge Hammer! The title character talks to his gun, sleeps with it, and is generally in love with it... but it's named Gun. In the German dub, however, he calls it Suzie.
Oddly subverted on Supernatural: Dean's beloved 1967 Chevy Impala doesn't have an exact name, but he often calls her "Baby" and more occasionally, "Sweetheart".
It is considered a real cast-member by some fans, appearing in EVERY SINGLE EPISODE to date.
Additionally, it has been given a name by the fans: "The Metallicar"
In a Season 3 episode of The A-Team, "The Sheriffs of Rivertown," Murdock gets two pistols and states, "I call these babies 'Betsy' and 'Bertha'."
Psych. In the episode "Viagra Falls," Lassiter, the somewhat incompetent cop, hears that a retired cop has named his weapon and considers dubbing his own “Mr. Thunderstick.” Juliet quickly vetoes the idea.
The retired cop's gun was named Darla Saidman. His gun was Jewish?
In an episode of Burn Notice Sam is using his Chuck Finley persona to scare information out of a villian, and he threatens him with his knife "Mr. Slicey."
In 'Allo 'Allo! Lt. Gruber named his tank Hubert. He asked if he could be buried with it as well.
In Glee, Dave Karofsky nicknames his own fist 'The Fury' and then proceeds to threaten Kurt with it. Yes, Karofsky has issues. Well, actually, it's more like he has subscriptions.
In an episode of How I Met Your Mother, Ted offers make Sandy Rivers (who had been embarrassing Robin at work) listen to "Common Sense" and "Reasonable Discourse". When Robin asks Ted if those are his fists, he replies that they're his feet. Ted's a kicker.
"The Limo" gives us Not-Moby's gun which he refers to as "Janice".
In Primeval, Danny reveals he has a club named "Molly"
In the episode "The Fighting Irish" of 30 Rock, Jack Donaghy, his dad, and his brother announce their fist-names before fighting.
Ignacio from Weeds has a stun gun named Mr. Zappy.
Henry from Sanctuary named a weapon Molly, short for Modified O-wave Linear Expeller.
Will: Uh, doesn't that acronym spell "mole"?
Henry: Molly's hotter.
Will: Dude, it's a weapon, not a woman.
Deadliest Catch's captain Phil named his engines Good Girl and Bad Girl because one of them was reliable and the other seemed to want him and his boat to be unable to cope with the Bering Sea's... bad moods.
The title character from Todd and the Book of Pure Evil forges a sword during the Season 1 finale in the school's industrial arts lab. Season 2 reveals that he names the sword "Sanddragon".
The Middle: Mike's father nicknamed his belt 'The Enforcer'.
BB King's famous guitar, Lucille. According to King, early in his career, a fight broke out in the club he was playing at. This fight quickly got out of hand, and somehow a fire started. Naturally, everyone immediately ran out, but King had left his guitar behind in his haste. Realizing that he couldn't afford to replace it, he reentered the burning club and retrieved his instrument. When he learned that the fight had started over a woman named Lucille, King decided to name all of his guitars in the future "Lucille", "to remind myself never to be that stupid again." King also famously refuses to ship Lucille in a plane's cargo hold; he buys two seat tickets. One for him and one for Lucille.
This is likely why a number of examples on this page (such as The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air above) use Lucille for their named weapons as well.
Green Day leader Billie Joe Armstrong's "Blue" - his first guitar which he still plays today.
Also, A 1950's Gibson Les Paul Junior named "Floyd". He states that this is his favorite guitar.
Stevie Ray Vaughan's guitars. The most famous is First wife also known as #1. Others include Lenny for example, after then his wife who gave it to him.
Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page played a black Les Paul custom known as "Black Beauty" (until it was stolen). Since then, his number one guitar has been a Les Paul sunburst known simply as "Number One".
Black Beauty is actually what the model was called, not his name for it. He named his other Les Paul "Number Two". This had more to do with him having an easier time to separete them, since they were setup differently. Similar thing with the numbers put on Pete Townshend's Les Pauls in the 70's.
Eric Clapton's guitar, Blackie. He also has a Brownie (which he used with Derek & The Dominoes).
Rory Gallagher's Stratocaster, supposedly one of the first bought in Ireland and his lifelong favourite instrument, was simply called "The Strat".
Mason Williams's guitar (which he named a song after, too), $13 Stella.
Vadim Pruzhanov, of DragonForce, plays a keytar named "Batman".
Given a Shout-Out on Bones, where Angela is Billy Gibbons' daughter. Her full name is Angela Pearly Gates Montenegro.
Steve Vai has names for the various prototypes and one-off guitars Ibanez has made for him. Most notable is his go-to guitar for almost twenty years, Evo, and Evo's bastardized-Charvel predecessor from his time with Frank Zappa and David Lee Roth, The Green Meanie.
Raymond Scott named most of the instruments he built: "Karloff", "Bandito the Bongo Bandit," etc. Of course, he needed names like that so his employees would know which one he was talking about, since telling them to go switch on "the one with all the knobs on the top and the buttons—no, to the left—down—right" would get in the way at ol Manhattan Research Inc.
Though not name per se, Woody Guthrie was famed for having "THIS MACHINE KILLS FASCISTS" on the body of his guitar.
Murdoc Niccals' bass guitar, "El Diablo", which was in fact given to him by the Devil.
The Decemberists' "Apology Song" is about losing a friend's beloved bicycle, which is named Madeline.
Angelspit call their modular synth 'The Middle Finger Of God'.
Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine and Audioslave calls his super-customized guitar "Arm The Homeless." It's written on the face of the instrument, in big red letters. He also has a customized Fender Stratocaster called "Soul Power."
Yngwie Malmsteen almost always plays cream-colored Fender Stratocasters modeled after his first guitar The Duck, named for the Donald Duck sticker he put on it as a teenager. He still plays The Duck from time to time.
Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath calls his prized Gibson SG-copy "The Old Boy", and his first Gibson SG "The Monkey", thanks to the monkey decal on it.
Zakk Wylde of Black Label Society and Ozzy Osbourne has a bunch of these. His white and black bullseye Gibson Les Paul Custom is The Grail. His red-on-natural bullseye Les Paul Standard is Red. His Confederate flag Les Paul Custom is The Rebel (his guitar tech has another name for it, The Tetanus Special, thanks to the large number of rusty bottlecaps nailed to it). His black and green camoflauge bullseye Les Paul Custom is Stormin' Norman. His orange and black spiral pattern Les Paul Custom is The Buzzsaw. And to top it off, Gibson gave him a few guitars from early on in his signature guitar run and he named them after Yankees based on their serial numbers. Number 15 is Thurman Munson, Number 4 is Lou Gehrig and Number 5 is Joe DiMaggio.
Supposedly, this was originally the idea for Danger Days album. Instead of Killjoy names, the nicknames they selected were going to be the names of their rayguns.
Rhythm guitarist Frank Iero used to have a guitar named Pansy.
Naming of instruments isn't just for guitars. Sax player Bobby Keys (most famous for playing with the Rolling Stones and Joe Cocker) has names for all of his saxes. His main one is a tenor sax named "Elmer".
Ron Bass carried a bullwhip that he called "Miss Betsy." He also had a pair of spurs with which he once attacked Brutus Beefcake, and which, on at least one occasion, he referred to as "Bret" and "Bart". (Probably after the brothers in Maverick.)
Dutch Mantel also carried a whip, which he called "Shoo Baby".
Back when he was ROH Commissioner, Jim Cornette would threaten anyone who messed with him with his faithful Louisville Slugger, "Ol' Thelma Lou".
In the Iron Kingdoms setting, Orsus "The Butcher of Khardov" Zoktavir calls his axe "Lola". As long as we're talking IK, there's also Ashlynn's Nemesis, Croe's Hiss, Gorten's Forge Father, Seige's Ground Pounder, Vlad's Skirmisher & Ruin, Magnus' Foecleaver, Bart's Red Tide & Ace, Fiona's Viper, and Brocker's Thrasher, and that only covers the some of the mercenaries and a few faction combatants. Naming your weapon is pretty common in the Iron Kingdoms.
Special note should be made for Liche Lord Asphyxious, who's spear Daemortus is named after the previous Liche Lord, who Asphyxious killed and turned into said spear.
In the Iron Heroes setting, the Weaponmaster class is required to name his weapon at 11th level. Doing so causes his reputation to precede him.
Dita (and her sexy twin Rita) the tricked out sample Colt M4A1 from GURPS: Gun Fu. Twin-drum magazine, reflex sight, night sight, targeting laser and, tactical light, all held on with aftermarket accessory rails. It's intentionally ridiculous.
Sigmar's warhammer, from which Warhammer takes it's name, is named Ghal-Maraz (Skull-splitter in Khazalid The game's second most famous weapons, the twelve swords forged for the rulers of what became the Empire's provinces, are something of an aversion, being known simply as "The (Name of Province) Runefang". A great many other examples exist in the setting.
A lot of Chaos weapons tend to have names in Black Speech, not so much as a nickname, but because a daemon of that name is literally bound into the blade and will probably suck your soul out through your hand if you don't treat it with respect.
Shadowrun includes several visual gags of tough mercenaries carrying guns with odd names written on them. In one example, an Orc who looks for all the world like Danny Trejo has two pistols bearing the names Meat and Potatoes.
In Dungeons & Dragons most notable magic items are named, including weapons. Some of the more famous include the paladin blade Holy Avenger, the cursed sword Nine-Lives Slayer, and the soul-stealing axe Life-Drinker.
Forgotten Realms canonically have few "swords +2": weapons of significant power are made for people of significant power and usually with specific purpose in mind — so they usually have names and stories.
Salvatore's Drizzt books: Drizzt Do'Urden got two scimitars, Icingdeath and Twinkle. Wulfgar's war hammer, Aegis-fang, named by its maker; Cattie-brie's bow, Taulmaril the Heartseeker; and her sword, Khazid'hea (translated from Drow, 'Cutter'; although as a sentient sword, being named is justified). Similarly, Artemis Entreri eventually acquires the sentient sword Charon's Claw. Though never named in the novels, game rule information gives names to the twin longswords of Zaknafein, Drizzt's father: one is called Reaper, the other Reaver. As they are borderline epic in their abilities, and he was epic level, they no doubt earned their name. Averted with Enteri's dagger, which despite its impressive power, is only known by the rubies on it. That is enough.
Violet Dawn / The Broken Isles campaign setting (d20) has feat "Named Weapon", which means that the character got the single "very special" bonded weapon; mechanically this gives +2 to attacks with it and -1 with anything else, including weapons of the same type. Replacing / changing the bonded weapon is rather hard.
Paranoia XP supplement "Service, Service". Vulture Squadron Warriors can carry most weapons that exist in Alpha Complex, and usually do. They give nicknames to not only each weapon they carry but each piece of ammunition as well.
While individual instances of this trope are generally rare in BattleTech, encountering an example is usually a good shorthand for "Bad AssAce Pilot at the controls." They also double as Names to Run Away From Really Fast, given named 'Mechs such as Widowmaker, Ebony Dragon, and Yen-Lo-Wang (essentially China's answer to Hades himself).
Dante's weapons tend to have proper names too, but it's because they're alive. Then there's Ebony and Ivory, his twin pistols; while they're black and gunmetal-gray, those are also female names. As well as Sparda's two guns, Luce and Ombra ("Light" and "Shadow" in Italian).
Ebony and Ivory are named after the Stevie Wonder/Paul McCartney song. All of Dante's weapons are named, including an electric guitar that's actually a succubus.
Going one step further: In the PS2 port of Viewtiful Joe, it's revealed that Blade Master Alastor is also Dante's sword.
The Sawed-Off Shotgun that appears in every game in the series earns the name "Coyote-A" in the fourth game.
The game The Fall: Last Days of Gaia actually allows you to name every weapon. This is useful to mark which gun is whose since the more a character uses a certain weapon (the EXACT weapon, not another of the same name) the more accurate s/he becomes when using it
Final Fantasy VII: Vincent Valentine's main sidearm is called "Cerberus" which is fitting as it has three barrels, each one with a sculpted dog head on the end of the barrel.
The Call of Duty series assigns callsigns to many of its vehicles, which you can see by looking in their general direction. Some are dynamically assigned from a pool of names while others are worked into the plot.
Call of Duty 2 has some dynamically named tanks called names such as "Hole In One", "Queen of Diamonds", etc.
Call of Duty 3 features a Jeep affectionately named Vera with a twin named Lynn.
Modern Warfare has a couple of levels revolving around escorting a tank named "War Pig" out of danger.
Modern Warfare 2 features some neighborhood clearing with a Stryker Armored Vehicle named "Honey Badger." In addition, many vehicles in the Afghanistan convoy are named - including "Curb Stomper", "Punta Gorda", and bridge-layer "Bigfoot."
In the Zombies mode, upgrading it pairs it with a second pistol named "Mustang" that shoots grenades. This is actually one of three sets of "woman's name for first gun/matching adjective for second gun" sets in Zombies: the others are "Jane"/"Calamity" and "Mary"/"Typhoid".
In multiplayer, players can scratch a clantag onto the side of their guns, allowing you to actually name your gun "Vera" if you so choose.
Heavy Weapons Guy from Team Fortress 2 calls his eponymous heavy weapon "Sasha". See this trope in full galore in Meet the Heavy Additionally, Valve has introduced a second Heavy unlockable weapon: an alternate minigun by the name of "Natascha". Check out her guns (the others have special names for many of their weapons, too, but those are more on the level of model names, as opposed to individuals).
Mocked by The Scout who, if he manages to dominate a Heavy player, will sometimes taunt "I think I'll take Sasha out for a steak dinner tonight. What d'ya think of that?"
The Sniper's kukri knife is named "Sharpy".
Players can do this too, with the addition of Name Tags, a one-use item, from the Mann Co. store. Use it, and you can call any item in your inventory anything you want! "Vera" has predictably become one of the more common names.
In the first Max Payne, two mooks discuss the tendency of their more intense co-workers to name their guns. One mook sheepishly admits he too named his gun. In a possible subversion, he didn't give it a girly name but instead named it 'Dick Justice'. The other mooks also point out how weird it is to name your weapon, one of them saying "Man, that's... kind'a weird."
One tribe in Suikoden named their swords after the most important person in their life. Then there's Flik, who named his sword Odessa, after the Quickly Demoted Woman he was attached to. He's from that tribe too.
All the customized weapons Bayonetta gets at The Gates of Hell are named. For instance, her most commonly used set of four pistols are called Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme individually and Scarborough Fair collectively.
Brick of Reilly's Rangers in Fallout 3 introduces her minigun as "Eugene", in a southern drawl no less.
Then there's "Ol' Painless", owned by Dave, president of the Republic of Dave, an homage to a couple of other guns of the same name. Not to mention the epitome of Boring, but Practical.
The Terrible Shotgun.
"That Gun" is short for "That Gun From Fallout 2": It's because the .223 pistol didn't return for Fallout 3, so the players started making questions if they would see "That gun from Fallout and Fallout 2" again. So Fallout: New Vegas brought it back as an unique version, it was the only .223 pistol until the Gun Runners's Arsenal DLC.
A laser pistol named Pew-Pew, a pulaski/fire axe named Knock-Knock, a displacer glove called Pushy...Almost all unique weapons have names, most of them are puns.
The Gun Runner's Arsenal expansion pack to Fallout: New Vegas adds a modified Fat Man named Esther. The main game has the missile launcher Annabelle, a possible shout out to the above Half-Life 2 example. Along with Lucky, Maria, This Machine, Medicine Stick, Dinner Bell, Paciencia, A Light Shining in Darkness, and so on.
Many of the better weapons in the Fire Emblem series, such as Ike's sword Ragnell and his father's greataxe Urvan in Fire Emblems 9 and 10. The player can also name the custom made weapons in FE 9 and 10.
Owain, a character in Fire Emblem Awakening, firmly believes naming your weapons adds more power to it. He comes up with ridiculous names for the most mundane of weapons, naturally. This gets lampshaded by Lissa.
Lissa: That Holy Slayer, Saintly Dragon blah-blah kinda stuff you're always talking about. I was wondering if you really didn't know the word "Staff"! Hee hee!
Owain: ...I'm pretty sure I should be offended by both of those statements.
In Destroy All Humans!, when you read a soldier's mind, you may hear the following phrase "I have a rifle, her name is Sue!"
One of the marines in Halo 3 is voiced by Adam Baldwin; the actor who played Jayne in Firefly. In a Shout-Out to Firefly, he will occasionally yell "Say hello to Vera!" during combat. As well as "Me and Vera have a little life-lesson for ya'!"
Many of the pistols in Resident Evil 4 are given actual names rather than their model number or manufacturer in their inventory listing (Matilda, Broken Butterfly, Killer 7, etc). The Matilda is named after the Distressed Damsel in The Professional.
Nethack features a variety of named magical weapons mostly from other sources, such as Excalibur, Stormblade, and Snickersnee. It also allows you to give a name to any item, and in some cases naming a normal weapon after a magical one causes it to become magic.
Tactics Ogre the Knight of Lodis features four Snap Dragon scrolls which seal the soul of the character that uses them in a sword which bears the name of the user. In addition to being powerful in their own right, the swords also carry over a portion of the unit's stats to buff the person wielding it, copy the unit's element (each element has a different design for the sword as well), and certain classes grant special effects (a snapped Sword Master would give an Instant Kill effect, a Fairy would increase luck, Angel Knights increase morale for units within a certain range of the wielder, ect.).
From Assassin's Creed II, as soon as Bartolomeo gets back to his home after being freed from prison by Ezio, he goes around the thrashed place looking for Bianca, who turns out to be a claymore.
Referenced in Brotherhood, where he starts searching for another woman and Ezio asks if he looked behind the table. Then it turns out Bartolomeo actually is married, much to Ezio's shock.
Mittens: Allow me to introduce you to my enforcers, Fear, (holds up fist) and Pain. (holds up other fist)
Zaeed Massani from Mass Effect 2 carries a worn-out old rifle around with him affectionately named "Jessie", although he was forced to retire it about five years beforehand. Zaeed's essentially a walking FireflyShout-Out.
There is also Tali's non-sentient combat drone, Chikktikavas Paus, whom she shouts encouragement and advice to in combat, and praises after the fighting's done.
In NeoQuest 2, you find a yellow skeith named Bledynn, who happens to call his BFS Vera◊.
In Disgaea 2, you can rename your weapons and items in their Item Worlds.
In Dragon Age: Origins, Sten names his sword Asala (according to him it means 'soul'), which he sees as a part of himself, and actually murdered an entire family because he lost it.
Note that they had not stolen it and he did not believe that they had, he simply went insane from grief (his religion really does consider the weapon to be part of him, and he has no way of legally returning home without it). When he recovered he turned himself in and he's refusing food in a drawn-out suicide attempt when you meet him.
Another example in Dragon Age would be in the download Witch Hunt, in which Finn has a staff named Vera.
Dragon Age II gives us Varric, the dwarf rogue. He has a super-duper custom crossbow named Bianca, but he won't tell you where or how she got the name.
The Legacy DLC reveals that Bianca is a unique repeating crossbow designed by a friend of his in the Carta. Apparently, Bianca is the only one that he has managed to get working.
World of Warcraft has a few examples of named weapons floating about, most are unattainable by PCs.
Frostmourne, the blade of the Lich King. This one was usable in Warcraft III, by the player-controlled Prince Arthas.
The Ashbringer, sword wielded by holy paladins of legend.
Thunderfury, Blessed Blade of the Windseeker
Thori'dal, The Star's Fury
Quel'Serrar, The High Blade and it's sister Quel'Delar
Touhou has an example (of course): Youmu Konpaku's swords, Roukanken and Hakurouken.
Irvine Kinneas, the resident sharpshooter and gunslinger from "Final Fantasy VIII" used four specialized rifles throughout the game, named the Valiant, the Ulysses, the Bismarck and the Exeter, all named after real-world Battleships.
The end game of Parasite Eve allows you to give a name a gun and piece of armor of your choice. Naming them lets you use them in New Game+.
Star Wars: The Old Republic gives us Corso Riggs, the Smuggler's first companion, who has no less than six named weapons (and provides Description Porn for most!): a deluxe heavy blaster (which gets stolen by Skavak) named "Torchy," a customizable blaster (which he gives to the Player Character) named "Flashy," another blaster pistol offered to the Player Character later named "Sparkles," a blaster rifle named "Sergeant Boom Boom," a blaster pistol named "Sparky," and a vibroblade named "Hewie". Which goes to show that he is a Giver of Lame Names.
Invoked during a conversation between the Sith Inquisitor and Andronikos Revel, where the latter averts this trope, claiming the reason he doesn't give his weapons names is because he's afraid he might get too attached to them.
EVE Online is an interesting example. You ship name always starts as <Player Character>'s <ship name>. You have the option to change it. Depending on what you do in Eve this may be important to you or not. If you're in RVB, naming ships is generally pointless as you'll probably lose in 5 minutes anyway.
This has led to people doing interesting things such as naming the combat ship Primary——> or Don't Shoot Me. Among other more colorful names.
Minecraft's weapon-naming system is similar to that of Skyrim, allowing the player to spend experience levels that would otherwise be spent on imbuing weapons (and other items) with actual enchantments in order to give them in-game names.
Every character in Exit Fate has a personal weapon (you employ blacksmiths to upgrade the weapon rather than trading up), and while some have simple, descriptive names (hatchet, red pen, handbag) many are named poetically and/or after people. The amnesiac former assassin Frore named his blade "Kella" after his friend/lover/companion/rival/? (They both lost parts of their memories, so neither is fully certain how they relate.)
Dr. Judith Mossman: Is that you, Gordon? Come inside, it's getting late. Gordon Frohman: There is no Gordon, Judith. There is only...The Claw. (His name for his beloved Gravity Gun.)
Frank from webcomic/Penny Arcade has a gun nicknamed "Mabel". Then again, Frank is a spoof of the Shell-Shocked Senior Vietnam vet archetype anyway, taken way over-the-top and then put in charge of an EB Games.
Hunter Ravenwood of Suicide for Hire names his guns. He has a .22 "carry-around piece" named Bop, and a much larger gun "which liquefies your target - kinda like a blender, but more satisfying" which he keeps in a glass case for emergency use, labelled "Idiot Magnum: In case of extreme stupidity, break glass".
Kat from Kat and Mouse: Guns for hire named her pair of Colt-Springfield M2001 .45-caliber high-capacity pistols Bonnie and Clyde.
An NPC in Neoquest II, a game within the game of Neopets, has a sword named Vera. His cowboy-like speech patterns (which he shares with no other character in the game) and the fact that there are several self-proclaimed Browncoats on the Neopets staff suggest that this is a direct Shout-Out.
In an RPPR Actual Play episode, Dave's character's beloved tommy gun is called Lucille.
"Not a woman, exactly. My... partner. She's been with me through thick'n'thin."
Thirty/Thirty (the robot/cyborg horse from Bravestarr) had a BFG called Sarah Jane. He himself is named for a bullet.
In Disney'sRobin Hood, one of the guards—tellingly named Trigger—has a powerful crossbow called Betsy.
The Simpsons parodied Full Metal Jacket in the episode "Dead Putting Society" wherein Homer forces Bart to call his golf putter "Charlene". "Pull, Dutchess! PULL!!!"
In an early episode, Mrs. Krabappel refers to her grading pen as "Ol' Red."
In "Mona Leaves-a", Homer wields a cinder block on a chain he calls "The Defender".
In Open Season, Shaw calls his shotgun "Lorraine". It even has its name engraved on it.
Big-game hunter Mr. Marlin, a one-shot character from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003), called his custom laser rifle "Betsy", and basically treats it as if it were a person. After the rifle is damaged to the point where it threatens to blow up, he remarks that "she's just that type of girl".
Also, Michaelangelo call his nunchucks "Chuck" and "Chuck 2: the Sequel".
The unfortunately named Lugnutz of Transformers Cybertron, according to his official bio, calls his rifle "Dutch".
Richard Hammond of Top Gear was mocked by his co-hosts when he referred to the car he was driving as "Oliver" (Oliver wound up becoming Hammond's Companion Cube).
According to legend, Davy Crockett named three different guns Betsy, which is most likely brought this trope to public consciousness.
It's not uncommon for players of Collectible Card Games to name their decks, particularly if it is a particular archetype. On the other hand, oblique or nonsense names allow you to refer to something and not give away too much about it to opponents who haven't seen it play yet.
Naming electronics, computers in particular, seems to be a general geek thing. Of course, most modern OSes specifically support computer naming for good networking/management purposes, but many geeks take it further by using a personal naming scheme that's standard across all their stuff.
Sometimes people (or IT departments) name their computers after ships, or after places (Often, naming the desktop/tower machines after places, usually stationary bases, and portable machines after ships, perhaps naming handheld devices after aircraft which are smaller than most ships).
There is one joke about a former IT guy naming the company servers after famous philosophers and a new guy joins the company after he has left. The new guy sees that one of the server is named Homer, gets the wrong idea, and any subsequent server the company acquires got named after The Simpsons characters.
One of the first Apple PCs was called the 'Apple Lisa' presumably named after Steve's daughter Lisa Jobs. The acronym 'Local Integrated Software Architecture' was Backronym invented after it had been named Lisa.
Fred Gallagher of MegaTokyo had a pattern of naming the succession of servers for the web comic after girls from Kanon, and his laptops after Haibane Renmei. This is taken to an extreme end in a few of the omake, depicting the comic server as a female persocom just sitting in the colocation center, who gets kidnapped.
The creator of the webcomic Comedity named his computer "Alice". In the strip, Alice is a Robot Girl.
Registering an Amazon Kindle allows you to name it.
Apple products, such as iPods and iPhones, when first plugged into a computer and thereafter, offer one the opportunity to "name" the device.
Atari designers would name projects after female coworkers, ex. "Candy" for the 400. The Atari2600 is the lone exception with "Stella" being taken from the name of a bicycle.
There's a 15th century cannon at Edinburgh Castle called "Mons Meg". (Mons being where it was built, and Meg being short for Margaret.) The barrel is almost big enough to crawl into.
In NASCAR, race teams and drivers would give names to their multiple cars. Jeff Gordon, for example, gave his racecars names starting with the letter B, including Boomer, Backdraft, Boo, Beavis And Butthead.
In Formula One, Red Bull driver Sebastian Vettel gives his cars girls' names. During the 2008 season while with Scuderia Torro-Rosso, he named his STR-Ferrari car "Julie." The following season when he joined Red Bull Racing, he named his first RBR-Renault car "Kate". When Kate was wrecked following the Australian Grand Prix, the team him a new one. He found this car to be faster and more aggressive, so he named it "Kate's Dirty Sister". In the 2010 season, his first car was named "Luscious Liz". When it turned out the chassis was unrepairable, and got replaced, he renamed it "Randy Mandy". In 2011 he named his car "Kinky Kylie", 2012 "Abbey" (no relation to The Beatles's album Abbey Road, reportedly), and 2013 "Hungry Heidi" (after Heidi Klum). The 2014 car has officially been named "Suzie".
There are numerous Volkswagen buses with names.
US bombers in WWII were often given female names by their pilots and crews, such as the famous "Enola Gay" and "Memphis Belle".
And not only US bombers. This personification of airplanes is almost universal
A number of musicians have been known to give affectionate names to their instruments. Notable examples include guitarists Eric Clapton (Blackie), B.B. King (Lucille), and Dr. Brian May (Red Special)
William Fredrick "Buffalo Bill" Cody named his favorite rifle "Lucrezia Borgia".
Famed golfer Bobby Jones named his putter "Calamity Jane".
The H-4 Hercules was given the sarcastic name of "Spruce Goose" by critics. The press picked it up and ran with it so well, most people know it only as such. Calling it that around Howard Hughes, it's designer was a good way to get fired.
A very disturbing real-life occurrence was one of the guns used by Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold in the Columbine High School Massacre, which Eric had named "Arlene".
British Paralympian Hannah Cockroft calls her racing chair "Sally".
The electric chair that claimed the lives of Ted Bundy among others is nicknamed "Old Sparky".
American comedienne Paula Poundstone often speaks about her most memorable car, a blue Ford Mustang convertible she called Dave.