Popular Baby Names 2015

Popular Baby Names of 2015: Would You Name Yours After a TV Show?

With more shows on than ever — and, of course, infinite ways to watch them — it seems like Americans’ obsession with television reached new heights in 2015. But is that obsession also inadvertently shaping our next generation?

BabyCenter on Tuesday released its annual roundup of the most popular baby names in the United States, and while there isn’t any concrete evidence to support that these names are influenced by specific TV shows — sadly, neither Ichabod nor Hakeem cracked the top 100 — there are more than a few popular series represented in this year’s list.

On the list of girls’ names, the ever-popular Emma (Once Upon a Time) and Olivia (Scandal) reign supreme, while the boys’ list features first-timers Mateo (Jane the Virgin) and Ezra (Pretty Little Liars).

Again, it’s more than likely that most of those connections are total coincidences, but it still presents an opportunity to ask this question: Have you ever thought of naming your child after a TV character? (I’ll get the ball rolling: I’ve fancied the name Cole ever since watching Charmed, demonic connections not withstanding.)

Any TV names you fancy? Drop ’em in a comment below.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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165 Comments
  1. KC says:

    Mateo???? Really???? What are people thinking?

    • Kate says:

      That it’s the Spanish form of Matthew? What are YOU thinking being so nasty about a beautiful and common name?

      • Isobel says:

        Agree it’s like people commenting on Ryan Gosling’s daughter’s name, there are other cultures other than Anglo-Saxon in the world and people do name their children names that aren’t English in origin

        • Maria says:

          Had to search esmeralda amada. Its a little bit soapy for me, but otherwise its not awful. I hate when the names are changed like izan (ethan) jesica (jessica) and so on

      • Mary says:

        I think Mateo is the italian form for Matthew, but I´m not sure…

        • Maria says:

          Mateo is the spanish name. I think tha Matteo is the italiano one, other than Mattia. Mattia is more like Matias. Mateo is aa classical and absolutely beautiful spanish name.And come on se hace our dose lf Jennifers

    • Z says:

      I named my son Kardashian. There can’t be any doubt about the origin of the name.

  2. I can picture myself naming my son Dash!

  3. Alwayshappyz says:

    Do cats count? I actually named my previous two cats (sisters) Lorelai & Rory (Gilmore Girls).

  4. Kate says:

    Poor hiatus-stricken TVLiners, scraping for stories… December has to be a tough month.

  5. Eric7740 says:

    Call me crazy, but I always enjoyed Greenlee (one of my favorite characters from All My Children) I just thought it was a unique, pretty name.

  6. Angela says:

    I’ve been in love with the name Lydia ever since watching the “Beetlejuice” cartoon as a kid :D. If I ever have a daughter someday, that would definitely be on my list of potential names.

  7. Sara says:

    I love Scandal and Olivia Pope, but maybe some babygirls are named after Olivia Benson too???

    • johnhelvete says:

      Olivia has been in the top 10 every year since 2001 per ssa.gov, I would guess you are correct and the popularity of the name has very little to do with Scandal (and let’s be honest SVU either).

  8. I hate admitting it… but I have thought about it. Of course Spencer is a generic unisex name so… it would be total coincidence right? Right. No ties to a certain crime drama… *Shifty eyes*

  9. Kate says:

    The only definite (or at least admitted) example of this in my life is, I need a simpler way to explain who these people are in my life, but, even though they aren’t related lets just call them my cousins, the second girl in the family is named Siobhaun after a character on the soap Ryan’s Way (a half hour thing that was on before All My Children which I think was a spin off of it) even though her mother’s family was a long way from their Irish roots (like sixth or seventh generation, my mother’s point when her mother was technically born there) and her father’s side, and hence their last name, was German. But well, she’s 36. I know my actual cousin, while she was pregnant with her twins who she knew were a boy and a girl at the time, saw Glee the Musical and was seriously thinking about naming them Rachel and Finn, which didn’t happen. We’ve never really talked about it, but I could see one of my siblings doing it. My brother did name his dog after a football player (which is fun to explain, when you just call him by his every day name, I don’t know that you think football player, I think you might think High School Musical, but then its explained and people laugh because he is a mini pincer/chihuahua mix).

  10. AdM says:

    Emma & Olivia… Those 2 names have been in the top 5 most popular girl names since like 2006. My little sister’s name is Emma & she was born in 2006..I remember us going through the BabyCenter baby names list in 2005/6 an seeing those names dominating.
    For a boy I like Axl…from The Middle

  11. spindae2 says:

    I intend to name my new dog Arri, cause of Arrow. ^^

  12. English says:

    It’s is completely nutts but I’m kinda obsessed with Nimue. (OUAT) its original!

    • makparis says:

      Not really original to OUAT. It’s a character from Arthurian legend. Recently seen on the show Merlin in addition to OUAT.

      • Isobel says:

        Agree it’s not original, she’s part of Welsh mythology and while it’s not massively popular it is a valid first name already

  13. Kate says:

    This isn’t a real list. The actual list from the SSA comes out in the spring. In March, I think. They have a website. TV and pop culture does influence baby names. It’s pathetic. The SSA releases a chart of fastest rising names and they always come from TV and movies.

    • A Fan of TV says:

      Why is that pathetic, though? Isn’t it someone else’s prerogative to pick their child’s name, and no one else’s prerogative to make a nasty stink about it? Seriously, the amount of judgment that goes into other people’s names says more about those judging than the person with the name…

    • Ashley says:

      People don’t have to name their child after the character. They could just like the name and were exposed to it from television.

  14. Bwhit says:

    I have twin daughters and wanted to name one of them Peyton just because I love the name but since I was an OTH fan my husband was convinced it was because of that, so he vetoed it. I don’t have boys but, Abel (SOA) and Silas (weeds, not the psycho from TVD) always sounded good to me.

  15. matty says:

    The name Olivia is likely just as influenced by Law & Order: SVU (Olivia Benson) as it is by Scandal. And Emma could be influenced by reruns of “Friends” that air constantly.

    • Toni-ann says:

      I think you’re totally right, ever since the Friends episodes when I was younger Emma has always stuck in my mind. I wouldn’t think of linking it to OUAT either.

    • Angela says:

      I first saw the name Emma in a “Baby-Sitters Club” book I read when I was a kid :). And if one’s a Jane Austen fan, that’d be another obvious way to hear that name.
      .
      I don’t mind the name Emma.

  16. Ted says:

    I’ve been wanting to name a kid Race since I first saw Jonny Quest.

  17. matty says:

    I have no children but if I did I would want to name then after Brooke and Erica from “All My Children” or if they were boys Chandler from “Friends” or Brandon from “Beverly Hills, 90210”.

  18. Jasie says:

    My wife and i are going with Silas for our boy name. First heard it from Weeds and always liked it since.

  19. What about naming my unborn son Spencer Guster? I miss “Psych”

  20. Beth says:

    We named our cat after Bellamy from the 100.

  21. webly3 says:

    I would name my child Arya after Arya Stark. :)

  22. Toni-ann says:

    I already know my first boy is most likely going to be Dean (maybe even with the middle name Michael). Sorry not sorry, future hubby.

  23. micaela says:

    i would name my boy after jax on sons of anarcy. dean,sam from supernatural, and hunter from idk i just like the name

  24. A says:

    Im naming all of my kids Laura Roslin

  25. Anna says:

    Lilah, Wesley (both from Angel), and Jayne (from Firefly) have always been at the top of my list.

  26. Lillie says:

    I wouldn’t mind naming a child Iris (like in The Flash) Jemma (like in Agents of SHIELD) or Thea (like in Arrow).

  27. Kelly O says:

    I was named after Kelly Garret from Charlie’s Angels and my dog is named after Gunnar from Nashville!

  28. TT Showbizz says:

    I always imagined naming my firstborn Starfish, after the majestic sea creature.

  29. Kayla says:

    I was named after a tv character- a soap opera character actually- Kayla from Days of our Lives. I have to say, it’s really weird BEING the kid named after a show you’ve never seen.

    • ninergrl6 says:

      EVERY time I meet a Kayla, I wonder if she was named after the Days character! That’s the first place I ever heard that name. (Kayla’s back on the show BTW so you still have the opportunity to watch her in action, though the late ’80s was her prime)

  30. chelsey says:

    My sons middle name is Cole, i loved him on charmed.

  31. Fernanda says:

    Aria from PLL (or Arya from GoT) is a great name. Other favorites are:
    Blair from Gossip Girl
    Felicity from WB’s Felicity and not Ms Smoak from Arrow

  32. peterwdawson says:

    A character on Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles actually ended up with a name I always thought would be good for my kid: Riley Dawson. I did think of the name before that show but I’m sure that’ll linger in my head now.

  33. Andrea says:

    My daughter is named Chloe after Allison Mack’s character on Smallville and my son is named Bryce after Matt Bomer’s character on Chuck. And I too had Cole on my list because of Charmed but my husband vetoed it. :)

  34. Ashbash says:

    Ever since Charmed came out I’ve held onto the name Piper. Baby Daddy made me love the name Stella. But I decided long ago that my future daughter will be named after the great Brooke Davis from One Tree Hill

  35. Steven says:

    I plan on naming my dogs Piper and Buffy.

  36. Kristen says:

    I was given my name because my mom loved Dallas. JR didn’t stand a chance. ;)

  37. Tess says:

    We named our dog Iris because of SG-1. She is best friend with our cat Felicity. On friendly terms with my dog Bruce Lee. We have a kennel (gsd), so I get to pick lot of names and I’m putting together list from A to Z (because you always come up first with the ones you don’t need) and I like to choose unsual names (aka from movie/tv show/mythology) but for a children? Well… we live in a time where you can have North West. Everything is possible.

  38. Michelle says:

    My mum actually got the idea for my name because she was watching Eastenders while she was pregnant.

  39. makparis says:

    I wouldn’t name my child after a book, movie or TV characters. I’ve already got names picked out to honor family. But, my dogs, sure. I could see myself naming my next dog Winchester or Felicity.

  40. Raylan says:

    I named my son Harlan after Harlan County in Justified.

  41. Kristina says:

    My middle name’s Ashley, as in Ashley Abbott from The Young and the Restless. Would have been my first name if it weren’t for the fact that Dad is more stubborn than Mom. I’ve never been bothered by the fact that I was named after a TV character (and a soap character, no less!). I like the name, so it doesn’t really matter where it came from. Plus, when I was a kid, the Olsen twins were a big deal, so if anything, I associated my name with *another* Ashley.

    • Shannon says:

      If I have a boy one day I want to name him Adam after Y&R’s Adam Newman.

    • BrightLight says:

      My real first name is after Heather from Y&R and my middle name is Tiffany from General Hospital. Weirdly Heather was also on GH at the same time but my mom swears she named me after Paul and April’s kid from Y&R (probably because GH’s Heather is cuckoo bananas LOL). Heather was an extremely popular name during my school days. I graduated from HS with 6 other girls named it and there were only about 90 girls in my graduating class.

    • Ashley says:

      I was also named after Ashley Abbot! Except I don’t have a middle name (also because my Dad is more stubborn than my Mom).

  42. chrisjroof says:

    I’ve always wanted to name my son Saracen, except I dont want to put him thru middle school being called Sara instead.

  43. TwinBoys04 says:

    I lobbied extremely hard to name my twin boys Lucas & Nathan…One Tree Hill was my inspiration!

  44. Annie says:

    My parents named me after a Doctor Who character :P

  45. Catherine says:

    I like Lumen from Dexter
    Lorelai from GG

  46. Shannon says:

    Well like a lot of girls I have a list of baby names I’ve been working on. I couldn’t think of any original boys’ names, so I added Ezra to the list. Thanks PLL.

  47. Jenny says:

    My fiance and I chose to name our first daughter after Amy from Doctor Who. We’re using it as a middle name but we love the character and how it sounded with her first name which is Lucy.

  48. Shannon says:

    As others have said, Olivia and Emma have been very popular names for many years. I didn’t connect them to OUAT and Scandal at all, but rather to Emma from Friends and Olivia Benson from SVU. But since both pop culture and tradition have so many Olivias and Emmas, who can really say who is named after whom?

  49. Paige says:

    I always thought Spencer as a girl’s name (like on PLL) was really cool! It’s feminine but a little feisty too!

    • Shannon says:

      PLL’s Spencer would be unhappy to know the meaning of Spencer is “butler” or “steward.” I’ve always thought of it as very unisex, because I’ve never actually met anyone named Spencer, but there are many male and female tv characters with the name. It kind of does have a feminine sound to it though.

      • Paige says:

        I just realized that “feminine” is the wrong word, because it’s not the kind of name that would look out of place on a boy. I meant that there is a level of sweetness to it.

        • Shannon says:

          Names that have “s” sounds tend to sound that way. Not exactly feminine, but more like you said. It has this sort of sweetness.

  50. Shannon says:

    Looking at the list of girls’ names I see names of more than just TV characters, but also book and movie characters. And maybe the names Kaitlyn and Kylie have become more popular because of the Jenners? The TV character standout girls’ name seems to be Cora, like OUAT’s Cora. I wasn’t expecting that name to be so popular.