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The 47 Society

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As detailed on The Other Wiki here, the number 47 has become an in joke among groups of mathematicians and screenwriters, improbable as the crossover may seem.

(it's a prime number, by the way)


  • Pomona College, if not the Trope Namer, is at least the Trope Codifier, as seen here
  • Star Trek had a Pomona graduate and member of the society Joe Menosky write several episodes of TNG and Voyager. The trope caught on with the other writers, to the point that the number 47 has a page on on the Star Trek wiki. Rick Berman once joked that it was "42 adjusted for inflation."
  • J.J. Abrams picked this up and uses it in his series, most prominently in Revolution and Fringe. He's also brought it to Star Wars, where it's now being used over 1138.
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    • This was amusing when Abrams helmed the 2009 Star Trek movie, as he inserted a 47 reference without knowing about the recurring gag in prior Trek.
  • The protagonist of the Hitman series is only known as Agent 47.
  • Averted by HK-47 from Knights of the Old Republic, who is named after the AK-47. Same goes for the multitude of fictional guns with 47 in the name.
  • As most (all?) the writers of the League of Intergalactic Cosmic Champions were Star Trek fans 47s were a big in joke there too.
  • The Wonderbolts of the Reading Rainbowverse are part of Spec Op group 47.
  • The quarantine docking bay on board Red Dwarf is Bay 47.
  • There are at least two prominent instances of characters on The West Wing making 47 significant phones calls from the White House, in both cases affecting the vice president's political future. In the first case, it's the president calling party leaders to ensure Vice President John Hoynes has a clear shot at the presidential nomination. In the second case, it's the VP himself whose (logged) calls to a woman with whom he's been having an affair alerts White House staffers and gives him a chance to resign before the woman's tell-all book ruins his chances of ever running for office again.
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  • In the music world, members of the Brooklyn-based Hip-Hop collective Pro Era have made references to the number 47 in various songs, and the design of one of their more prominent, and controversial, logos is the number with its digits joined together. The origins of the group's connection with the number can be linked to its late founder Capital STEEZ. He felt that 47 was a perfect expression of balance in the world, representing the tension between the heart and the brain (the fourth and seventh chakra, respectively.)

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