* BreakupBreakout: Man, did he ever. Generation X, for all their attributes, don't get much press these days, unless it's to talk about how Billy absolutely skyrocketed to stardom after the band broke up.
** Idol himself denies "Dancing With Myself" is about [[ADateWithRosiePalms masturbation]]. Instead, it's ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: he was inspired by the dance clubs in London and Tokyo.
** "White Wedding" was not about how much he hated his sister's husband, per the man himself.
* OldShame: His infamous ''Rolling Stone'' cover story (pictured as the page image), mostly due to the fact the pictures embarrassed the hell out of him, and because he was drunk and stoned out of his mind during the interview resulting in a less than flattering portrayal.
* OneOfUs: He grew up reading Marvel comics and watching Series/DoctorWho and was one of the first artists to openly embrace the internet and UsefulNotes/MP3 technology.
* ReferencedBy: Angel/Archangel's blond curly mane was modeled after Billy Idol's in ''Film/XMenApocalypse''.
** He was one of several artists to turn down performing "Don't You Forget About Me", which was ultimately made famous by Music/SimpleMinds (who initially wanted to turn it down themselves). In 2001, he recorded his own version as a new track on a GreatestHitsAlbum.
** He was the first choice to play the T-1000 in ''Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay'', but he broke his leg and wrist in a motorcycle accident before filming could start.
** One of the original scripts for ''Film/SayAnything'' had "To Be A Lover" as the song played during the boombox scene, rather than "In Your Eyes" by Music/PeterGabriel.