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In the 14th novel of The Dresden Files, Harry must navigate the trickery and treachery of the Winter Court, re-connect with his allies, and preserve the secret of Demonreach Island against an insidious enemy ... and that's just on his first day on the job as Winter Knight! Amazingly, he manages to fit a record-setting number of Shout Outs in alongside the non-stop magic and mayhem.

  • In the first chapter, Mab tells Harry that she will most likely kill him in the morning. Harry assumes she was making an intentional reference, but it turns out she was being literal.
    • Since it's later revealed that Mab has had a mortal taking her to movies on weekends for quite some time, it's entirely possible she was doing both.
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  • Butters apparently calls the swivel-chair in front of his main home computer the "captain's chair". He coordinates raids for (unspecified) MMORPGs from there.
  • Harry quotes Robert Frost's "Fire and Ice" - "To say that for destruction ice, Is also great, And would suffice."
  • "Feets, don't fail me now" is a line from classic vaudeville.
  • Another Yeats reference, when Bob calls Harry the embodiment of "Things fall apart".
    • "Things Fall Apart", a quote from Yeats, is also a repeating liefmotif in Robert Anton Wilson's Illuminatus! - which also deals with a human world intruded into by non-human things of Magic seeking to bring about Armageddon. The idea of something inhumanly evil being deliberately sprung from its prison of millenia to wreak havoc in the world is an Illuminatus! theme too.
  • There are also nods to Terry Pratchett's Discworld; Pratchett's representation of Elves as glamorously beautiful sociopathic sadistic mind-fuckers gets quite a few nods when describing the denizens of Mab's Faerie. Mab is, after all, a Queen of the Elves.
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  • "The impossible we do immediately. The unimaginable takes a little while" paraphrases the motto of the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers.
  • Harry gets off a sinking barge as fast as he can, not wanting to get Titanicked.
    • Figuratively, he does at the end, when Murphy says that a relationship between him and her would be a Titanic (1997) in the making.
    • Also, how did Harry summon up an iceberg? By saying "Rexus Mundi," bastardized Latin for "I'm the king of the world!"
  • The cursed blade which Lea acquired in Grave Peril is referred to as "Morgana's athame" by Mab.
  • Thomas's "The path of excess leads to the palace of wisdom" paraphrases William Blake.
  • According to Harry, the Winterfae thought the Saw movies were hilarious.
  • Poking fun at Butters:
    Thomas: Check out Dr. Marcus Welby, M.D., here.
    Harry: I'd have gone with Doogie Howser, maybe.
    Thomas: Split the difference at McCoy?
  • The vintage car provided for Harry's use is described as a "creepy Herman Munster hot rod".
    • Once it's repaired, he starts calling it the Munstermobile and hearing "Bad To The Bone" in his head when he sees it.
      • Molly sings the opening riff of that song when she presents Harry with a new Badass Longcoat.
  • When Harry interrupts Bob's magically projected movie, he comments that Harry is going to the special hell. Harry doesn't get it, to his annoyance.
  • There are the usual Star Wars references:
    "The Little Folk are easily startled, but they’ll soon be back. And in greater numbers."
    • Lea takes her Yoda-ing seriously.
    • A "chewy" noise Mouse makes reminds Harry that the dog's been called Chewbacca (aka Chewie) in the past.
    • Told that the BFS fortress is impregnable, Harry points out that the Death Star was impregnable.
    • Another bit:
      Molly: I sense...
      Harry: Say it. You know you want to say it.
      Molly: {half-exasperated} It is not a disturbance in the Force.
    • But she does sense a presence, one she hasn't felt since...
    • Butters, catching on to Harry's account of what's going on, calls it a phantom menace. Molly and Thomas get the reference; Murphy requires a translation from Nerd to English.
    • Harry's afraid that Maggie will be afraid of him if he goes to see her, as if he's Darth Dresden.
    • Murphy gives Dresden a kiss "for luck, Star Wars style".
    • Harry stalls before passing through a potentially-lethal ward, knowing he might be joining Yoda and Obi-Wan in blue-light Force Ghost country if he's wrong to think he'll survive it.
  • The Tao of Pratchett. "Build a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life."
  • Mother Winter's will holds Harry immobile in such a way that even if he'd been The Incredible Hulk, his mere physical strength couldn't break free.
  • Told about the parasite, Harry gets creeped out by memories of the Alien movies from his formative years.
  • Harry is inclined to think of himself as Charlie Brown, "got to try for the damned football because that's who you are."
    • Later, he channels Lucy van Pelt (and provides a Call-Back to Changes) when Mouse gives him mega dog-kisses: "Ack! My lips touched dog lips! Get me some mouthwash! Get me some iodine!".
  • Harry and Thomas built a makeshift dock at Demonreach. So Harry, of course, immediately dubbed it the Whatsup Dock. Thomas threw him into the lake.
  • Butters points out how the Winter Knight's resistance to pain lets him Energizer Bunny his way through enemies.
  • Sharkface, Harry imagines, leaves Mac's bar to go do a The Right Stuff walk with his nasty buddies, ready for the next round.
  • There's a Thelma & Louise reference near the end, when Harry convinces Fix that Maeve is infected.
  • While climbing down a lot of stairs, Harry gets bored and starts singing the Goblin-Town song from The Hobbit. He then acts offended when the unbelievably ancient Genius Loci doesn't get it.
    • This is immediately followed by complaining that there should be a fireman's pole instead of all the stairs, because "then it'd be like going down to the Batcave."
  • Cat Sith is not amused by Dresden asking him where his red lightsaber is.
  • When Harry realizes Cat Sith is being controlled by Nemesis, Nemesis proceeds to assume direct control.
  • Bob's "Buck up, little camper" is from Better Off Dead.
  • Harry begins his address of a horde of Winter Fae with the phrase, "Alright you Primitive Screwheads, listen up!"
  • Thomas owns a brass telescope, and claims they've been very popular items since those pirate movies came out.
  • Harry hopes his clothes will stay intact when he passes through a destructive ward, the way Superman's costume gets to borrow his invulnerability. In any case, he didn't have time to play Mr. Rogers and take off any clothes.
  • Molly, snarking off with "joy" at being promoted from flunky to lackey: "Hail, Ming"
  • "Wax on, wax off."
  • Mab apparently tries to kill Harry with a ticking croc.
  • Seeing Cat Sith vanish, Harry grumbles that the feline fey owes a licensing fee to Lewis Carroll's estate. Or possibly the other way around.
  • Bob's magically projected movie is obviously a rip-off of the opening of Star Wars, complete with an invocation of Lawyer-Friendly Cameo.
  • In his speech to Maeve at the party, Harry calls her a "psychopathic hosebeast."
  • Toot-toot's latest set of armor is made out of Coke cans, including a shield sporting Coca-Cola's seasonal polar bears.
  • Harry has kept up with new music during his convalescence with the Unseelie Court: he mentions the Foo Fighters "Walk" as a choice for a montage of his physical therapy/attempted murder sessions, and dances with Mab to a symphonic rendition of "45" by Shinedown.
    • the Foo Fighters thing shouldn't be too much of a surprise, it's well known he's a comic book geek, and "Walk" did play over the closing credits of Thor.
    • He sings a line from "Just A Gigolo" when he dons a tux; it's unclear if he's remembering Bing Crosby's version from when he danced ballroom at retirement homes or the David Lee Roth cover from his own adolescence, however.
  • Bob encourages Harry to trust no one. "Did The X-Files teach you nothing?"
  • "Knight takes Knight. Check."
  • The wall of the Outer Gates looks like it was built to hold off a horde of King Kong-sized Mongols.
  • Harry compares himself to the Bumble but with better teeth.
  • Molly's apartment is big enough for Hugh Hefner's birthday party.
  • "Whatever happened to Ia, Ia, Cthulhu fhtagn?"
  • At one point Harry compares Toot-toot to King Leonidas.
    • The helmet Mother Summer gives Harry also reminds him of the Spartans from that film.
    • The leader of the Little Folk which Toot fights against is nicknamed Captain Hook for wearing fishhook-studded armor.
  • Meeting Kringle provokes the inevitable, albeit reluctant, 'Twas the Night Before Christmas reference to "a bowl full of jelly".
  • Bob's "I'm not even supposed to be here today!" is a Clerks reference.
  • Harry reminds Molly that she's been playing Batman for a while.
  • Meta example: Harry wonders if the reason he keeps cycling back to the same locations is because his life is actually a basic-cable TV show and they don't have the money to buy new sets every week.
  • Given the Winchester, Harry asks Thomas if he thinks he's John Wayne.
  • Murphy tosses a quip from The X-Files.
  • Some hot female Sidhe are described as "a wood chipper in Playboy bunny clothing."
  • Jim Butcher even shouts out to another of his works: at Dresden's surprise party, Maeve has the same hairstyle as Kitai.
    • Harry, of course, hasn't read Codex Alera, so he compares her hair-to-one-side look to 1940s actress Veronica Lake.
  • As this is the third or fourth time Andi's been abducted, it's proposed that they start calling her Danger-Prone Daphne.
  • Harry refers to Mab's daily attempts to kill him as "Grimtooth games". Grimtooth's Traps is a series of system-neutral tabletop gaming supplements depicting all sorts of fiendish death traps, for use in fantasy and other settings.
  • Several references indicate that Tam Lin, like Dracula or the Necronomicon, has a factual basis in the Dresdenverse.
  • In a snit, Harry does his Yosemite Sam impression.
  • Another Clarke's Third Law reference, this time from Bob describing the island's defenses.
  • Harry playfully chides Mouse for having trouble fighting the rawhead, saying it should've been like Scooby-Doo versus the Scooby Snack Monster.
  • Demonreach is called "Hopalong" by Harry at one point, possibly in reference to Hopalong Cassidy: a cowboy-hero noted for his preference for imprisoning bad guys rather than shooting them.
    • The prison beneath the island is called Arkham Asylum.
      • Which is where Maeve's laugh sounds like it belongs.
    • On another occasion, Harry calls the isle Spooky Island, which could be a reference to the live-action Scooby-Doo movie.
  • Sharkface makes a leap straight out of Kung Fu Theater.
  • Faced with an obstacle only he can bypass, Harry suggests they do things Ulysses-style: he sneaks in and lowers the barrier for the rest.
  • Walt Disney, Harry speculates, got a few hints from Mab, same as The Brothers Grimm. This makes the fact that Sarissa escorted Mab to Disneyland somewhat ironic.
  • Decked out in his tux, Harry turns around in James Bond-ian fashion.
  • As in Changes, we're reminded that Dresdenverse goblins aren't the wimpy dimwits from The Hobbit, but mutant Terminator psycho ninjas: Hannibal Lecter meets Jackie Chan.
  • Harry attributes his own chronic inability to keep his mouth shut to Spider-Man comics, which makes perfect sense.
    • Molly describes his strength as the Winter Knight as "Spider-Man strong". Harry, being the nerd he is, counters that he's actually stronger than Spider-Man, who can only lift ten tons.
    • Getting dressed, Harry chooses a T-shirt with the logo from Spider-Man's black uniform, figuring it was appropriate.
    • Harry also attributes his love of driving authority figures insane to watching too much of The Dukes of Hazzard as a kid.
  • Thomas: "One of these days, Dresden, pow, right in the kisser."
  • Harry asks Fix if they can knock off the High Noon routine. References to Von Clausewitz come up during the subsequent parley.
  • After fighting off a psychic attack: "I hate getting into a Vulcan mind meld."
  • Captain Hook is the size of a Tickle-Me Elmo. If Harry were a bad sort, he could knot the little fairy's arms up like Stretch Armstrong.
  • A Groin Attack leaves Harry briefly speaking in a Mickey Mouse voice.
  • Molly spots some graveyard dirt on Harry, who asks her to "stop Sherlocking me".
  • Seeing Lily's many, many sorts of allies emerge from hiding, a marveling Harry recites the "Ee-aye, ee-aye, oh" line from "Old McDonald".
  • Harry's remark that three really is a magic number is probably phrased that way because it's a Schoolhouse Rock reference.
  • "Eeny, meeny, miney, moe, catch a Sharkface by the toe."
  • Murphy, told of the Sidhe attack on Jet Skis, compares them to Roger Moore-era James Bond villains.
  • Harry refers to his ghostly experiences in the previous novel as him doing his Casper impersonation.
    • And to the time Lea dressed him in Changes as "playing Ken doll" for a fey.
  • Donar Vadderung is compared to Donald Trump or George Soros. Meeting with Harry, they trade Peanuts references.
  • Mouse is called Supermutt at one point.
  • "A wascally wabbit with a Winchester."
  • STOMP STOMP, CLAP! STOMP STOMP, CLAP! "We will, we will rock you!"
  • "Two plus two is five" is a Nineteen Eighty-Four reference. In Orwell's novel, it represents the State's ability to impose a belief that any lie — even statements innately-contrary to the mathematics of reality — is truth. In Butcher's, it's how Nemesis-infected Maeve declares that she can lie, regardless of how much it contradicts what is real.
  • Butters: "About twenty updates in capital letters all about boats, boats, boats."
  • On seeing Harry, Maeve says: "Rumors of your death have been greatly exaggerated". Later, Harry himself gives an abbreviated version ("Rumors, death, exaggerated") to Andi. And then again, Donar Vadderung greets Harry with another abbreviated version.
  • Harry calls Sharkface Spanky, which might suggest he treats the Outsider as an annoying child.
  • At one point Maeve says to (visibly aroused) Harry: "Is that your staff, wizard, or are you just happy to see me?", which is based on a famous quote from Mae West.

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