- Actor Allusion: Peter Boyle as a Taxi Driver.
- Covered Up: The theme song "Original Sin" was originally the title track for a Pandora's Box album written and produced by Jim Steinman and was later more famously covered by his frequent collaborator Meat Loaf (with some lyrical alterations: only the movie version features lines about "who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men").
- Fake American: Tim Curry as Farley Claymore.
- Follow the Leader: Came out after the giant success of Tim Burton's Batman, which inspired a wave of similar noir-esque styled, pulpy superhero adventure films. Ironic given that the character of Shadow was a source of inspiration for the creation of Batman himself and how Alec Baldwin had been considered for the other role.
- Money, Dear Boy: This was one of the movies Sir Ian McKellen starred in to fund his film adaptation of Richard III.
- Playing Against Type: Tim Curry, the mighty Lord of Darkness and charismatic Sweet Transvestite playing an oily, sycophantic Gríma Wormtongue character.
- Prop Recycling: The Phurba is the same knife from The Golden Child. Replicas of the Phurba have been made as tie-ins to The Shadow.
- Similarly Named Works: Despite sharing the title, it has nothing to do with the story of the same name by Hans Christian Andersen.
- The Merch: Like Batman before it, The Shadow had a Kenner toyline. Unique among the figurines were "Electronic Bulletproof Shadow," which featured the Shadow's iconic laugh, and Dr. Mocquino, the Voodoo Master. Yes, that's right: Kenner resurrected an almost-unknown character from the pulps for their toyline.
- What Could Have Been:
- The shooting script had a longer chase scene in the Hall of Mirrors, including flashbacks and banter. However, an earthquake destroyed some of the mirrors, making the full scene too expensive.
- Sam Raimi wanted to follow up Evil Dead 2 with this but was unable to get the rights. Instead, he directed Darkman, using some of the ideas he had for his version of the story.
- The Other Darrin: Tim Kitzrow provides the voice for Lamont Cranston/The Shadow, though Baldwin's speech from the film itself appears as well.
Pulps and Radio
- Actor Allusion: Possibly. In his later years, Orson Welles's outfit of choice when appearing in public was loose-fitting black, oftentimes with a cloak and matching fedora. No red scarf, though. In The Third Man he wore a black coat and fedora like The Shadow.
- Defictionalization: The Shadow actually began as just the host character of a radio adaptation of the Detective Story magazine. When people kept asking for his non-existent magazine, Street and Smith ended up creating one with Walter Gibson as the main writer.
- Enforced Method Acting: Orson Welles never once read the scripts before recording, so whenever Lamont sounds surprised you can be sure it's genuine.
- Executive Meddling: Worried that the character was getting too powerful and too difficult to challenge, the writers were ordered to scale back the character's powers to just invisibility (and that they add in weaknesses to even that), and restricting Cranston to using invisibility only twice an episode (at the halfway mark and right at the end).
- Follow the Leader:
- A radio series called The Avenger was an obvious attempt to copy the success of the Shadow series, right down to the hero, Jim Brandon, being a mind-reader with the power to turn invisible, though he used electronic gadgets and chemicals rather than the Shadow's hypnotism and telepathy.
- The Batman began as basically the Shadow in a bat suit before developing his own style; in particular, his 1939 debut "The Case of the Chemical Syndicate" bears a striking resemblance to a 1936 story from The Shadow magazine called "Partners of Peril".
- Darkwing Duck is a more recent example of a homage (bordering on parody).
- Lost Episode: The radio dramas ran from 1937 until 1954 and totaled over 650 episodes. For various reasons, only about one-third of those episodes have survived and are still available, including several which only exist as incomplete recordings. Some of the surviving episodes also only exist as adaptations produced in Australia. Somewhat counter intuitively, the majority of the episodes that survive are earlier ones instead of the episodes from the late 40s and early 50s when recording mediums such as magnetic tape would've been more readily available. All but 11 episodes of Orson Welles' 52-episode run to begin the series are still intact, but every single episode from season 13 (1949-50) through to the series' conclusion in season 18 (1954) is gone forever, save one (Season 17's The Vengeance of Angela Nolan)
- The Other Darrin: The radio Shadow was played by several different actors. Same with the radio Margo.