troperville

tools

toys


main index

Narrative

Genre

Media

Topical Tropes

Other Categories

TV Tropes Org
random
The Joy of X
...or 'Tis Pity She's an X.

Some works have titles that are just really easy to have fun with. All you have to do is replace a word or two, and there you go - instant funny title!

With other works... Well, substitute "well-known" for "easy to have fun with", and "memorable" for "funny". After all, what better way could there be to make people remember the title of your new work than making it a Shout-Out to a William Shakespeare title?

In other words, this is about the phenomenon of the title of a work being used as a template for other titles. The key feature is that the structure of the title is distinctive enough that even when replacing one or more words, it's still obvious what the reference is.

More generally, popular phrases with a variable element used in this manner as templates are termed "snowclones". See The Other Wiki.

See also Stock Shoutouts, Memetic Mutation. If your title is a Shout-Out to something other than another title, it's a Literary Allusion Title. If it's an episode title referring to another episode title of the same series, they're Cross Referenced Titles. For trope title examples see This Trope Is X or pretty much any Title Tropes of your choice.

Some of these are bound to be Parallel Porn Titles.

Please list lots of actual examples of title variations, rather than just the template - it's more fun that way!

Examples according to original work

    open/close all folders 

    Comics 

    Film 
  • The X, The Y, His Z and Her A - starting with The Cook, the Thief, his Wife, and her Lover, which went through tons of Memetic Mutation when it was first out.
    • Chapter 4 of The Curse of Monkey Island is "The Bartender, The Thieves, His Aunt, And Her Lover".
    • "The Mook, the Chef, the Wife and Her Homer" — three guesses.
    • Slightly more subtle was the series of missions in Grand Theft Auto III called "The Crook," "The Thieves," "The Wife," and "The Lover."
    • A Woman, a Gun and a Noodle Shop is probably one these- this is the international film for a movie titled A Simple Noodle Story in reference to the film it adapts.
  • Miracle On X (34th Street)
    • Miracle on Evergreen Terrace (The Simpsons)
    • The winter 1980 Olympics where the US Men's hockey team beat the Soviet squad in the semifinal round was dubbed the "Miracle on Ice."
    • Recess Christmas: Miracle on Third Street
    • Miracle on 49th Street, a novel by Mike Lupica about a basketball star who learns he has a twelve year old daughter.
    • Miracle on the 17th Green, a novel by James Patterson and Peter De Jonge, which was made into a TV movie in 1999.
    • "Miracle on Third or Fourth Street", an episode of Frasier.
    • Miracle on Interstate 880, a TV movie about a disaster during the 1989 San Francisco earthquake.
    • Miracle on Jongno Street, a 2010 documentary that explores LGBT issues in Korea.
    • Miracle on Regent Street, a novel by Ali Harris.

  • Attack of the Killer/50-foot X - starting with Attack of the 50-Foot Woman

  • The X That Ate Y (Not based on any particular film, but a common title for B-movies parodies. May have referenced "The dog ate my homework.")
    • A whole series of children's books, that are of the format The (Holiday Decoration) that ate my (Relative).
    • The novelty song "The Cockroach That Ate Cincinnati" by Rose and the Arrangement about a fictional horror movie.
    • In The X-Files episode "Detour", Mulder claims that he has an x-file called "The Cockroach That Ate Cincinnati" filed in the C’s.
    • Likewise, "The Eggplant That Ate Chicago" by Dr. West's Medicine Show and Junk Band.
    • And the song "The Pizza That Ate Chicago" by Tom Paxton. Chicago must be tasty.
    • The Cars That Ate Paris
    • A Happy Days Expanded Universe novel gave us "The Cow that Ate Salt Lake City" and its sequel "The Cow That Got So Thirsty Eating Salt Lake City, It Had to go Drink Lake Erie"
    • There's another series of children's books titled The Plant That Ate Dirty Socks.
    • "The Tower That Ate People", a song by Peter Gabriel.
    • The 2008 documentary The Cars That Ate China.
    • The short documentary The Hair That Ate Hollywood.
    • The 1906 silent short The Horse That Ate the Baby.
    • The Science Fiction short film The Zucchini That Ate New York vs. Tomatozilla.
    • Bill Cosby had a standup bit involving The Chicken Heart that Ate Up New York City.
    • The Blob That Ate Everyone (Goosebumps)
    • Food Critic Jeffrey Steingarten's book The Man Who Ate Everything
    • Just for Fun: We are still in need of someone to make a cheap children's TV show and call it "The 7 that 8 9".

  • Crouching X, Hidden Y - starting with Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

  • X, Or: How I learned to stop worrying and love the Y. - starting with Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb
    • The Simpsons episode title "$pringfield (Or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love Legalised Gambling)"
    • The Bluetones song "Autophilia (Or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love My Car)"
    • According to IMDb, the working title for Soccer Dog: The Movie was Soccer Dog, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying & Love the Pooch.
    • The Nostalgia Chick episode Blonde Girls Now and Then, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Ke$ha.
    • The 1964 comedy film The Monster of Camp Sunshine or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Nature.
    • The short film The Origin or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the J.O.I.N.T..
    • The 2009 short film Dr Lewis Or; How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Corpse.
    • The 2010 documentary Flush! or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Toilet.
    • The 2005 short documentary The Zeros Post Mortem or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying About Box Office and Love DVD.
    • Iraq: A Look Baq (Or, How We Learned to Stop Reporting and Love the War), a 2003 television special hosted by Jon Stewart.
    • Wil Wheaton's The Saga of Spongebob Vega$pant$ (or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Star Trek)
    • David Willis's Roomies! collection Roomies! Or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Beer.
    • The first episode of the Touhou Fanime The Memories of Phantasm had the english title "The Ordinary Magician or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Kotatsu".
    • One Square Root of Minus Garfield strip is titled "Donutception, Or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Donut (Wars)".
    • Michael Rosen had a possible variation with "Tomato Two, or How I Learned to Love Tomatoes".

  • A Fistful of X - starting with A Fistful of Dollars

  • From X with Love - starting with James Bond novel/movie From Russia with Love

  • The Good, The Bad And The X - starting with Sergio Leone's The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.

  • Once Upon a Time in X - starting with Sergio Leone's Once Upon a Time in the West

  • I Was a Teenage X - starting with I Was a Teenage Werewolf
    • I Was a Teenage Frankenstein, film from the producers of I Was a Teenage Werewolf, released in the same year (1957)
    • I Was a Teen-Age Dwarf, novel by Max Shulman
    • I Was a Teenage T. Rex, book in the Dinoverse series
    • I Was a Teenage Worrier
    • I Was a Teenage Fairy
    • I Was a Teenage Faust, 2002 TV Movie
    • I Was a Zombie for the FBI, 1984 Film
    • I Was a Teenage Zombie, 1986 film
    • "I Was a Teenage Taylor", episode of Home Improvement
    • "I Was a Teenage Gary", episode of SpongeBob SquarePants
    • "I Was a Teenage Stimpy", episode of The Ren & Stimpy Show
    • "I Was a Teenage Spy", episode of Boy Meets World
    • "I Was a Teenage Anarchist", song by Against Me!
    • "I Was a Teenage Communist", a Radio 4 documentary on the history of Communist Party of Great Britain presented by Alexei Sayle (who was a teenage Communist).
    • "I Was a Teenage Brain Surgeon", referenced in a Spike Jones routine.
    • "I Was a Teenage Thumb", 1963 Looney Tunes short.
    • I Was a Teenage TV Terrorist, a 1985 comedy film.
    • I Was a Teenage Movie Maker: Don Glut's Amateur Movies, a 2006 documentary.
    • I Was a Teenage Feminist, a 2005 documentary.
    • I Was a Teenage Werebear, a 2011 short film parodying several movies, including Rebel Without a Cause.
    • Growing Up Brady: I Was a Teenage Greg, written by Barry Williams, who played Greg Brady on The Brady Bunch, and Chris Kreski, a screenwriter and biographer.
    • I Was a Teenage Popsicle, a novel by Bev Katz Rosenbaum, in which the main character is cryogenically frozen for ten years.
    • I Was a Teenage Professional Wrestler, a memoir by Ted Lewin
    • I Was a Teenage Alien, a science fiction novel by Jane Greenhill.
    • I Was a Teenage Zucchini...But I Didn't Get Squashed!, a play by Craig Sodaro.
    • I Was a Teenage Sex Pistol, a book that chronicles the history of the Sex Pistols.
    • "I Was a Teenage Monster Mangler", a short story by Gordon Rowlinson.
    • I Was a Teenage Intellectual - a 1999 Czech short, "I Was a Teenage Werewolf" spoof.
    • "I Was a Teenage Blowfly," movie-within-the-show from The Fairly OddParents

  • X House on the Y - specific to 1970s exploitation horror and starting with The Last House on the Left

  • All this, and X Y (in which Y should rhyme with "too") - starting with All This And Heaven Too, the famous movie with Bette Davis
    • All this and World War II, a 1976 musical documentary that juxtaposes Beatles songs, performed by a number of musicians, with World War II newsreel footage and 20th Century Fox films from the 1940s.
    • All This and Rabbit Stew, one of the infamous Censored Eleven cartoons, about a black hunter and Bugs Bunny.
    • All This and Puppet Stew, an album by Los Angeles punk rock band The Dickies.
    • All This and Everest Too, an actual newspaper headline printed on the morning of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, referring to the British expedition becoming the first to reach the summit of Mount Everest a few days earlier.
    • The '80s shirt that said "ALL THIS AND BRAINS TOO".

  • X, Lies and Videotape, or Sex, Lies and X, or Sex, X and Videotape - starting with sex, lies, and videotape:
    • Who's Counting? Marilyn Waring on Sex, Lies and Global Economics
    • Less Than Perfect has a final episode titled "Sex, Lies and Office Supplies"
    • X-Men has an episode titled "Weapon X, Lies & Videotape."
    • Boy Meets World has an episode titled "Wake Up, Little Cory" in the episode the name of Cory and Topanga's project is Sex, Lies and Videotape.
    • Goof Troop has an episode titled "Wrecks, Lies & Videotape'."
    • Dexter has an episode titled "Dex, Lies and Videotape."
    • Roswell has an episode titled "Tess, Lies, and Videotape."
    • Family Matters has an episode named "Food, Lies and Videotape."
    • Will and Grace has an episode titled "Sex, Losers, and Videotape."
    • The Simpsons has an episode titled "Sex, Pies and Idiot Scrapes."
    • Martin has an episode titled "Checks, Lies, and Videotape."
    • Northern Exposure has an episode titled "Sex, Lies and Ed's Tape."
    • South of Nowhere has an episode titled "Love, Child, and Videotape."
    • Murray Torkildsen released an album called Sex, Lies and Videogames.
    • "Sex, Lies and Videogames" was also the name of a Game Informer article analyzing BMX XXX and Deed or Alive Extreme Beach Volleyball way, way back.
    • Perhaps closest to the original is a BBC programme Sex, Lice and Videotape.
    • The Ultimates 3 "Sex, Lies, & DVD"
    • Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman has an episode titled "Sex, Lies and Videotape."
    • Dawson's Creek has an episode titled "Text, Lies and Videotape."
    • CSI: Crime Scene Investigation has an episode titled "Sex, Lies, and Silicone"
    • CSI: NY also has an episode titled "Sex, Lies, and Silicone"
    • Tripping the Rift has an episode titled "Six, Lies and Videotape"
    • Sex, Lies and Bacon
    • Atari's Batman Arcade Game had a movie theater showing Sex, Lies, Video Games.

  • One of Our X is Missing - probably started by One Of Our Aircraft Is Missing, 1942 film
    • One of Our Spies is Missing, 1966 film
    • One of Our Dinosaurs is Missing, 1975 film
    • One of Our Porn Stars is Missing, 1993 film
    • One of Our Thursdays is Missing, 2011 novel by Jasper Fforde
    • "One of Our Angels is Missing", Charlie's Angels episode
    • "One of Our Planets is Missing", Star Trek: The Animated Series episode
    • "One of Our Olives is Missing", Get Smart episode
    • "One of Our Probes is Missing", Search Control episode
    • "One of Our Trains is Missing", Maverick episode
    • "One of Our Bombs is Missing", I Spy episode
    • "One of Our Chickens is Missing", Petticoat Junction epsiode
    • "One of Our Dogs is Missing", Lost in Space episode
    • "One of Our Assemblymen is Missing", Green Acres episode
    • "One of Our Running Backs is Missing", The Six Million Dollar Man episode
    • "One of Our Zeppelins is Missing", Switch episode
    • "One of Our Engines is Missing", McHale's Navy episode
    • "One of Our Bottles is Missing", I Dream of Jeannie episode
    • "One of Our Stately Homes is Missing", Danger Mouse episode
    • "One of Our Sweathogs is Missing", Welcome Back, Kotter episode
    • "One of Our Fruit Machines is Missing", song by Nik Kershaw
    • "One of Our Dholaks is Missing", song by Transglobal Underground
    • "One of Our Psychedelic Beakers is Missing", song by The Dentists
    • Variations:
      • "One of My Wives is Missing", 1976 TV Movie
      • "Two of Our Weirdos Are Missing", Laverne and Shirley episode
      • "Some of Our Airmen Are No Longer Missing", 1990 documentary
    • Aversion: "One of Our Submarines", a song by Thomas Dolby, omits the last two words from the title, but includes them in the lyric.
    • A group called Local Heroes, featuring various ex-members of The Shadows and other veteran guitarists, have released albums called One of Our Shadows is Missing, Two of Our Shadows are Missing and Three of Our Shadows are Missing.

  • X, Y Style - starting with Divorce Italian Style.

  • Murder Most X - starting with the Margaret Rutherford Miss Marple film Murder Most Foul, which was quoting Hamlet
    • Murder Most Horrid, Dawn French vehicle
    • Murder Most Medieval, anthology of historical whodunnits
    • Murder Most English, TV adaptation of the Flaxborough novels by Colin Watson
    • Murder Most Fab, novel by Julian Clary
    • "Murder Most Fowl", episode of Castle
    • "Murder Most Fowl", short story by Deborah Millitello in Dragon
    • "Murder Most Maris", episode of Frasier
    • "Murder Most Likely", a Canadian docu-drama starring Paul Gross.

  • Whatever Happened to X? - starting with Whatever Happened To Baby Jane

  • My Big Fat X Y - starting with My Big Fat Greek Wedding

  • Bring Me the X of Y - after Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia. X is most often "Head" as in the original, and Y is usually a name.
    • "Bring Me the Head of Willy the Mailboy!", Dilbert collection
    • Bring Me the Head of Mavis Davis, film
    • "Bring Me the Head of Michael Portillo", song by The Family Cat
    • "Bring Me the Head of Yuri Gagarin", live album by Hawkwind
    • "Bring Me the Head of Light Entertainment", 1990s UK TV panel game
    • Bring Me the Head of Dobie Gillis, 1988 TV movie
    • Bring Me the Head of Prince Charming, Roger Zelazny and Robert Sheckley novel
    • Bring Me the Head of Oliver Plunkett, novel by Colin Bateman
    • Bring Me the Head of Lance Henriksen, 2013 film
    • TV episodes:
      • "Bring Me the Head of Oswaldo Castillo", Medium
      • "Bring Me the Head of Hank Kaplan", Nurses
      • "Bring Me the Head of The Hulk", The Incredble Hulk
      • "Bring Me the Head of Earthworm Jim", Earthworm Jim
      • "Bring Me the Head of Stuart Rosebrock", Coach
      • "Bring Me the Head of Arthur Daley", Minder
      • "Bring Me the Ted of Albert Garcia", Doctors (involving a teddy bear)
      • "Bring Me the Lip Gloss of Deirdre Arpelle", The Cosby Show
    • Bring Me the Rest of Alfredo Garcia, album by The Flaming Stars
    • "Bring Me the Sweat of Gabriela Sabatini", poem by Clive James

    Literature 
  • The Joy of X, the Trope Namer, is an interesting zigzag: most titles of this form reference The Joy of Sex, which was itself titled in reference to The Joy of Cooking. Conveniently, it also makes this a Just for Pun trope and a Self-Demonstrating Article.
    • In the Discworld book Maskerade, Nanny Ogg writes The Joye of Snackes - as a cookbook where every recipe is either an aphrodisiac, a double entendre, or both, it manages to reference both of this template's originals.
    • "The Joy of Sect" is an episode of The Simpsons.
    • There's a book entitled The Joy of Sox, talking about socks. It's incredibly amusing.
    • The Joy of Sox is also the title of a baseball blog.
    • The Joy of Lexx: Defunct Lexx fan site
    • The Joy of Pokémon (the 92nd Pokémon episode, naturally)
      • A later episode is "The Joy of Water Pokemon".
    • "The Joy of Sects" is a title of a class about religions in the novel Love Among the Walnuts (itself a Joy of X title — see below).
    • There is a webcomic entitled "The Joy of Tech".
    • The Joy Of TeX (yes, that formula markup language ... which, for the uninitiated, is pronounced "tecchhhh", rhyming with "blecchhhh", not "tex", according to ''The TeXbook''.)
    • The Joy of Sets: Fundamentals of Contemporary Set Theory, a math textbook.
    • The Joy Of Painting (Bob Ross art instruction series)
    • Charles Papazian's The Complete Joy of Homebrewing
    • The Joy of Work, a Dilbert book
    • Leo Rosten's The Joys of Yiddish and its sequel The Joys of Yinglish
    • The Joy of Origami, a book of origami models and instructions for folding them.
    • Sara Lee has a slogan entitled "The Joy of Eating", which is also found on the packaging of their Soft and Smooth breads.
    • "The Joy of Sax", album by the Capitol Steps
    • A BBC documentary about statistics, and how it doesn't have to be boring, is called "The Joy of Stats".
    • The Joy of Signing is a guidebook for learning American Sign Language.
    • In The Front Page, a Freudian psychiatrist publishes The Joy of Impotence after being shot in the groin.
    • The Joy of Lex is a book about fun with words (think 'lexicon').
    • And, to end off all this madness, someone wrote a book actually titled The Joy of x... said book was about algebra and calculus.
    • Another one titled The Joy of X is about the X Window System.

  • There was a spate of Everything You Always Wanted to Know About X (But Were Afraid to Ask) - starting with the sex manual Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex....
    • Charmed featured "Everything You Wanted To Know About Magic Portals (but were afraid to ask)".
    • The Restaurant at the End of the Universe considers The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy to be more controversial than a book titled Everything You Never Wanted to Know About Sex but Have Been Forced to Find Out.
    • Everything You Wanted to Know About Guilt but were too ashamed to ask
    • The book Fight by Eugene Robinson has the subtitle Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Ass-Kicking but Were Afraid You'd Get Your Ass Kicked for Asking.
    • There was a TV special called Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Jack Benny But Were Afraid to Ask.
    • There is a documentary called Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Computers... But Were Afraid to Ask.
    • There is a Czechoslovakian film called Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex But Were Afraid to Experience.
    • There is a short documentary called Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Swing But Were Afraid to Ask.
    • In My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic of all things, Twilight breaks out Slumber 101: All You've Ever Wanted to Know About Slumber Parties (But Were Afraid to Ask).
    • The Sea Lions' nearly eponymous album Everything You Always Wanted to Know About the Sea Lions But Were Afraid to Ask
    • James McCawley wrote Everything that Linguists Have Always Wanted to Know About Logic (but were Ashamed to Ask)

  • Xing Toward(s) Y (Slouching Towards Bethlehem) - started as a Literary Allusion Title, but has morphed into template pattern.

  • A Tale of Two X - starting with A Tale of Two Cities

  • X for Dummies (Note that the publisher has actually trademarked the phrase "for Dummies", so actual published works with this formula do not exist outside of the official series. Ironically, there is no such volume about ventriloquism.)

  • How to Verb X and Other Verb Y - starting with the book How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
    • How to Lose Friends and Infuriate People
    • How to Talk Dirty and Influence People
    • How to Make Enemies and Irritate People an album by Screeching Weasel
    • How to Lose Friends and Alienate People
    • "How to Lose Friends by Influencing People," Part Two of How Not to Write a Play by Walter Kerr

  • All I Really Need to Know I Learned From X.
    • Erma Bombeck, All I Know About Animal Behavior I Learned in Loemann's Dressing Room.
    • Dave Marinaccio's All I Really Need To Know I Learned From Watching Star Trek
    • The horror short Everything I Needed to Know About Zombies I Learned from the Movies.
    • All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten by Robert Fulghum is probably the original.
    • Where There's a Will There's a Way Or, All I Really Need to Know I Learned from Shakespeare by Laurie E. Maguire.
    • El Paradigma: All I Really Need to Know in Business I Learned at Microsoft by Julie Blick.

  • A Are From B, C Are From D. - starting with Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus.

  • I, X. Like The Joy of X, the generally-parodied template (I, Robot) isn't the original (I, Claudius or maybe something even older). See I, Noun for examples.

  • The Seven Habits of Highly Effective X (People)
    • The Dilbert collection, Seven Years of Highly Defective People.
    • The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, a Fictional Document from Schlock Mercenary. At least, until it was retconned into The Seventy Maxims of Maximally Effective Mercenaries after the author got a cease-and-desist notice from the creators of the original Seven Habits of Highly Effective People book.
    • The 666 Habits of Highly Effective Demons, a magazine article in Raidou Kuzunoha vs. King Abaddon (and probably a Woolseyism)
    • In The Simpsons episode "Brother's Little Helper" Bart is reading "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Pre-teens"

  • Sex and the Single X, or Sex and the Y X - starting with Sex and the Single Girl.

  • Fear And Loathing in X - starting with Hunter S. Thompson's Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.

  • Zen and the Art of X - starting with Robert Pirsig's Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, which itself refers back to Zen in the Art of Archery by Eugen Herrigel. The title of the latter is often quoted with an "and" instead of "in".

  • The Art of X - starting with (The Art of War)
    • The Art of Raising Dogs
    • The Art of Small Talk
    • The Art of Manliness
    • The Art of Love
    • The Art of Sex
    • The Art of Shaving
    • The Art of Trolling
    • The Art of Quartet Playing
    • The Bart of War (The Simpsons)
    • The Art of Noise (Band), and The Art of Noises (Luigi Russolo essay which inspired the band name)
    • The Art of Computer Programming, Donald Knuth's still unfinished book series.
    • The Art of Software Testing, a landmark work on software testing by Glenford J. Myers.
    • The War of Art, a book about art and creativity, by Steven Pressfield.
    • Books of production art from a popular movie usually follow the formula "The Art of {movie title}"
    • Interestingly enough there's no "The Art of Art" (there's The Art of Art History though)

  • The Tao of X, starting with The Tao of Pooh, the book that popularized Taoism in western society by relating it to Winnie the Pooh
    • The Tao of Archery, the second issue of the Great Ten miniseries (also a pun; Celestial Archer's real name is Xu Tao).
    • The Simpsons and Philosophy: The D'oh of Homer
    • The Tao of Programming
    • The Tao of Steve
    • Dao of Pow is the tao used as a flail

  • X Sutra - starting with the Hindu Sutras, followed by the Jain Sutras. Most modern examples are in parody of the Kama Sutra

  • Are You There, God? It's Me, X - starting with the classic Judy Blume young adult novel, Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret..
    • The Venture Bros., "Are You There, God? It's Me, Dean"
    • South Park, "Are You There, God? It's Me, Jesus"
    • King of the Hill, "Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret Hill"
    • "Are You There, God? It's Me, Childhood", an article at Salon.com
    • "Are You There, God? It's Me, Madison Avenue", an article on advertising that seems to have multiple homes on the Web.
    • Supernatural, "Are You There, God? It's Me, Dean Winchester"
    • Are You There, God? It's Me, Kevin, an autobiographical book by Kevin Keck
    • "Are You There, God? It's Me, Detroit", an article in the Detroit Free Press
    • Are You There, Vodka? It's Me, Chelsea, by Chelsea Handler
    • "Are You There, Cthulhu? It's Me, Margaret"
    • Are You There, Primus? It's Me, Starscream. A Transformers fanfic.
    • "Are You There, Margaret? It's Me, God" was probably inevitable, but its most well-known use is a song title.

  • The Compleat X - starting with "The Compleat Angler," by Izaak Walton.
    • The Compleat Al
    • The Compleat Conductor, a book on conducting by Gunther Schuller
    • ''The Compleat Dying Earth" by Jack Vance
    • The Compleat Beatles, a book of lyrics
    • The Incompleat Folksinger by Pete Seeger
    • In-universe example: The Compleat Atlas in Garth Nix's Keys to the Kingdom series.
    • The Compleat Enchanter, an omnibus edition of L. Sprague de Camp's Harold Shea short stories.
    • The Compleat Turkey, a book of cartoons by Sandra Boynton illustrating irritating types of people by comparing them to turkeys. The turkey on the cover is insisting that the title should be spelled "complete", for example.
    • The Compleat Ankh-Morpork City Guide
    • The Compleat Practical Joker, a 1954 book by H. Allen Smith

  • Love In The Time/Age of X - starting with Love In The Time Of Cholera.
    • Love In The Age of iPods, a book by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan.
    • Love in the Age of Fishsticks, a film made in 2008.
    • Love In The Age of Drought, a novel by Fiona Higgins
    • Love in The Age of Silicone, an article about Real Dolls
    • In one episode of The Simpsons, Marge can be seen reading a pirate-themed romance novel called Love in the Time of Scurvy.
      • And in another, Lisa is reading Love in the Time of Coloring Books.
    • Love in the Time of LOLCats by Achewood's Ray Smuckles.
    • Love in the Time of Science, an album by Emilíana Torrini.
    • "Love in the Time of Dragons", an episode of Merlin and a novel by Katie Mc Allister.
    • Love In The Time of Goblins, Book One of the Hot Goblin Brotherhood Saga in Skin Horse

  • Doing X With Gun And Camera - starting with Captain Ralph Bonehill's book Out With Gun and Camera - that, or Hunting Big Game in Africa with Gun and Camera, a film from 1922.
    • By 1930, this title was already being parodied, in the form of George Chappell's Through the Alimentary Canal with Gun and Camera.
    • Through the Uncanny Valley With Gun and Camera - a recent blog about James Cameron's Avatar.
    • Whale Hunting with Gun and Camera by Roy Chapman Andrews
    • Another Discworld parody: Ridcully is the author of Along the Ankh with Bow, Rod and Staff with a Knob on the End.
    • Into the Outdoors with Gun and Camera, an adventure included with the second edition of the Paranoia role-playing game.

  • The X's Tale - starting with The Canterbury Tales as the Trope Namer, but sadly not the Trope Maker. The original is a frame story where X means "told by the", not "about a".

  • X in Wonderland - starting with Alice in Wonderland

  • The Book of X - starting with most of the books of The Bible, other religious texts, and the medieval Books of Hours

  • X Come Home starting with Lassie Come Home by Eric Knight (1938)

  • What Every Young X Ought to Know — started by What a Young Husband Ought to Know by Sylvanus Stall and similarly-titled books in the Self and Sex Series of "social hygiene" books published around the turn of the 20th century
    • In Bell Book And Candle, Shep tells Nicky he should call the book he's collaborating with Redlich on What Every Young Witch Ought to Know.
    • In Of Thee I Sing, Wintergreen claims to be writing a book titled What Every Young President Ought to Know.
    • Uncle Dynamite by P. G. Wodehouse makes mention of What Every Young Policeman Ought to Know.

    Live Action TV 
  • The, well, X Files.
    • The Rockford Files may be the earliest example
    • The Springfield Files (The Simpsons)
    • The Dresden Files
    • The Radio Times once had a cut-out-and-keep series of fact-files on characters from The Archers called "The Ambridge Files".
    • The Goodies File, the book of the series.
    • The Odessa File and The Ipcress Files, a good two decades before The X Files.
    • The Dead Files, a history show.
    • From Germany: Aktenzeichen XY, a real-life crime show running for a long time before Akte X.

  • British media love Have I Got X For You and X Behaving Badly for punning headlines.
  • Will the Real X Please Stand Up? (from the game show To Tell the Truth)
    • "The Real Slim Shady", a song from Eminem containing the lyric "Would the real Slim Shady please stand up...".
    • "Will the Real Martian Please Stand Up?", an episode of The Twilight Zone.
    • "Will the Real Jerry Lewis Please Sit Down?", a cartoon series.

    Music 
  • X on a G-String (Air) - perhaps not so common in the English-speaking world, but oddly popular in Japan (where it takes the form G-Senjou no X).

  • The X formerly known as Y - starting with Prince, it has its own page.

  • X Meets Y Uptown - Started by King Tubbys Meets Rockers Uptown, a dub reggae album by Augustus Pablo and King Tubby.
    • Dread Meets Punk Rockers Uptown, a compilation album.
    • The Big Man and the Scream Team Meet the Barmy Army Uptown, a single by Primal Scream and On-U Sound.
    • Tayo Meets Acid Rockers Uptown (a dubstep group)
    • Last Train to Trancentral (Meets the Moody Boys Uptown), a remix of The KLF's single ''Last Train to Trancentral" by The Moody Boys.

  • What's So Funny About X, Y and Z? - Started by the Elvis Costello song (actually written by Nick Lowe) "What's So Funny About Peace, Love and Understanding?"
    • "What's So Funny About Truth, Justice and the American Way?" (Action Comics #775)
    • "What's So Funny About War, Pain, and Cynicism?", New York Sun article about the films of Buster Keaton

    Poetry 
  • Love Among X - starting with Robert Browning's 1855 poem "Love Among The Ruins".
    • P. G. Wodehouse's Love Among The Chickens
    • Jean Ferris' novel Love Among The Walnuts
    • Eric Alter's collection of eight one-act plays, Love Among The Squirrels
    • The film Love Among Thieves
    • Starship, the 1980s-vintage successor to Jefferson Airplane/Jefferson Starship, recorded a song entitled "Love Among The Cannibals"...
    • ...which itself is a reference to Wright Morris's 1957 novel Love Among the Cannibals.
    • Ogden Nash's short poem Love Under the Republicans(Or Democrats).
    • The fictional play within Avatar: The Last Airbender titled "Love Amongst The Dragons".
    • In Dream Girl, Clark mocks Georgina's literary ambitions by suggesting that she wants to write "Love Among the Heifers: a pastoral in nine cantos, with costumes by Abercrombie and Fitch."
    • Referenced in The Stand, with one of the military guys thinking of 'love among the viruses' when he sees two people who died after getting it on.

    Radio 
  • One X's Family - starting with One Man's Family
    • Tex Avery did "One Ham's Family" and "One Cab's Family" for MGM.

    Theatre 

    Unknown 
  • The Life (and Times/Adventures/Etc.) of X

  • Memoirs of a(n) X
    • Memoirs of a Geisha
    • Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac
    • Memoirs of an Exorcist
    • The Science Fiction film Memoirs of a Survivor.
    • The 1979 film Memoirs of a French Whore.
    • The German film Memoirs of a Frustrated Hedonist.
    • The 2010 romance film Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac.
    • Memoirs of a Cigarette, a documentary film about the history of smoking.
    • The Brazilian film Memoirs of a Gigolo.
    • The 2009 documentary Memoirs of a Black Latina.
    • The short comedy film Memoirs of a Blogger.
    • The short animated film Memoirs of a Scanner.
    • Memoirs of an Invisible Man
  • Me, Myself, and X
  • So You Want to be an X
  • [Insert Unlikely Activity Here] for Fun and Profit
  • X "They" Don't Want You To Know About Oddly enough, "They" are rarely easily defined. Amazon gives you the following:
    • Natural Cures "They" Don't Want You To Know About by Kevin Trudeau
    • Challenged by Natural scams "he" doesn't want you to know about, an article by Michael Shermer in Scientific American.
    • Debt Cures "They" Don't Want You to Know About by Kevin Trudeau
    • The Weight Loss Cure They Don't Want You to Know About by Kevin Trudeau
    • Doctors of Deception: What They Don't Want You to Know About Shock Treatment by Linda Andre
    • The Great Bird Flu Hoax: The Truth They Don't Want You to Know About the "Next Big Pandemic" by Dr. Joseph Mercola
    • The Really Inconvenient Truths: Seven Environmental Catastrophes Liberals Don't Want You to Know About — Because They Helped Cause Them by Iain Murray
    • The 6 Dirty Little Secrets They Don't Want You To Know About Network Marketing by Gavin M-R
    • An Enlightened Vision Of Cyberspace and The Grand Illusion Which Threatens It... (The Secret Business Revolution They Don't Want You To Know About!) by The Core Executive Team — Zephyr Media
    • Natural Secrets Drug Companies Don't Want You to Know About by Mark A. Stevens with Christine Jones
    • What They Don't Want You to Know About Television and Videos by Lawrence Kelemen
    • Prehumous (As opposed to Posthumous): UNPOETIC POEMS about SEX, Violence and Secrets they don't want you to know by Steven Selman
    • The Natural Bird Flu Cure "They" Don't Want You to Know About by David J. Kennedy
    • The Tricks of the Rich: What They Don't Want You to Know About Making Money and Accumulating Wealth by Paul A. Overy and Ken Lee
    • This also shows up as "What they won't tell you about X" or "X they won't tell you about Y"... too lazy to get examples now.
  • The X's Daughter
    • The Abortionist's Daughter by Elisabeth Hyde.
    • The Alchemist's Daughter by Katharine Mc Mahon.
    • The Apothecary's Daughter by Julie Klassen.
    • The Arsonist's Daughter (1847) by Josef Kajetan Tyl, a 19th century Czech dramatist.
    • The Blower's Daughter by Damien Rice.
    • The Bonesetter's Daughter by Amy Tan.
    • The Calligrapher's Daughter by Eugenia Kim
    • The Coal Miner's Daughter by Loretta Lynn
    • The Devil's Daughter (1991).
    • The Doctor's Daughter
    • The Farmer's Daughter (1947 and 1976)
    • The General's Daughter by Nelso De Mille.
    • The Gravedigger's Daughter by Joyce Carol Oates.
    • The Hangman's Daughter by Oliver Pötzsch.
    • The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent.
    • The Hummingbird's Daughter by Luis Alberto Urrea.
    • The Imposter's Daughter by Laurie Sandell.
    • The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards.
    • The Mistress' Daughter by A.M. Homes.
    • The Optimist's Daughter by Eudora Welty.
    • The Partisan's Daughter by Louis de Berničres.
    • The Ringmaster's Daughter by Jostein Gaarder.
    • Sculptor's Daughter (literal translation of Bildhuggarens Dotter) is an autobiographical novel by Tove Jansson.
    • The Shepherd's Daughter.
    • The Smuggler's Daughter.
    • The Squatter's Daughter.
  • X Considered Harmful is a popular naming convention in Computer Science circles. Originating from Edsger Dijkstra's letter Go To Statement Considered Harmful, nowadays it's possible to find Considered Harmful articles concerning almost anything computer-related.
  • The Thin X Line, where X is usually a color.
  • Aliens Ate My X (possibly from Lurid Tales of Doom headlines)

    Multiple/Other 
  • Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge has The Joy of Hex as well as several others courtesy of the Phatt Island library catalog:
    • Memoirs of a Woman of Dubious Pleasure
    • A Fistful of Barnacles
    • Breakfast at Meathook's
    • Great Expectorations (By Captain Loogie)
    • My Mother the Cart
    • So You're Going to be Executed...
    • The Little Organ that Could
    • Crochet Eyepatches for Fun and Profit
    • Louse Ranching for Fun and Profit
  • After you win or retire in Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri, the game chooses a book title to represent your reign. Most are a parody of a famous book title, and include:
    • "Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Organic Superlubricant (But Were Afraid to Ask)".
    • "Zen and the Art of Missile Rover Maintenance"
    • "Are You There, Planet? It's Me, FACTIONLEADER."
    • "All I Ever Wanted To Know I Learned In The Cloning Vats"
    • "Men Are From Chiron, Women Are From Nessus"
    • "The 27 Habits of Highly Effective Talents"
    • "Transcendence For Dummies"
    • "Mindworms in the Mist"

I'm Mr. Future Pop Culture ReferenceShout-Outs IndexLampshaded the Obscure Reference
Jack the RipoffThis Index Is CopypastedIdentical Panel Gag
It Is Pronounced Tro-PAYThis Trope Name References ItselfJust for Pun
I Will Show You XThis Trope Is XKing Bob the Nth
Job TitleTitle TropesJustified Title
Jeanne d'ArchétypeJust for PunJust Desserts

alternative title(s): Snowclone Title
random
TV Tropes by TV Tropes Foundation, LLC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available from thestaff@tvtropes.org.
Privacy Policy
177399
2