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"Everything was '-tron' in the 80's! Megatron, Voltron, Tron."

"Tron" is Greek for a form of instrument (such as the "Metatron" from mythology was an instrument of God). These days, it's used as a suffix for devices for manipulating particles, because of that latin word "Electron".

But this trope is about how in fiction, it's used as a suffix just for Rule of Cool. Sometimes it's a name, sometimes it's a device that doesn't really fit the suffix, but it's called that anyway.

Compare Thing-O-Matic, The Something Force, Law of Alien Names and Xtreme Kool Letterz.

Examples of NameTron include:


Anime and Manga

Card Games

Comic Books

  • Ultron, recurring foe of The Avengers. Could be a portmanteau of the prefix ultra- and tron.
  • In addition to the roster of infamous Transformers characters, the rare Transformers In 3-D comic had a group of Canon Dis Continuity villains called the Destructrons.

Film

  • Tron is so awesome that it doesn't need a prefix.
    • The creator stated that the inspiration was a shortening of electronic. By complete coincidence there is a "tron" command[1] from several varieties of the BASIC programming language.
  • One of the Puppet Master films (no relation to the Heinlein book) had a doll called the "Decapatron".
  • Orgasmatron from the Woody Allen's movie Sleeper.

Live Action TV

  • A number of monsters in Power Rangers, although 'crons might be more common. Lampshaded by the show's stunt team at Power Morphicon when they had 1 fan play a monster named "Hairgelatron".
  • Doctor Who has a Dalek that an ignorant collector calls "Metaltron".
  • Community has Boob-a-tron, a cardboard robot made by Abed in the hopes that someone will spill bong-water on it, causing it to become sentient.

Music

Professional Wrestling

  • The big screen that's part of WWE's set is traditionally referred to as the Titantron, after the former name of the parent company, Titan Sports.

Tabletop Games

Toys

  • Absolutely everywhere in LEGO's many space factions in the 1980s: Futuron, Blacktron, M-Tron, Unitron...
  • Several Transformers have had this over the years, most notably Megatron and Galvatron, and the Transformers' home planet of Cybertron. Other notables from the toylines include Banzai-Tron, Magmatron, and Computron. In Japan, quite a few evil factions have been known as the Destrons, while their good counterparts were known as Cybertrons (the planet was called Seibertron instead).
  • The Go Bots have the homeworld Gobotron.

Video Games

  • Protectrons in Fallout 3
  • Positron from City of Heroes, who's named after the real-life antimatter counterpart to the electron.
  • The Syndicate games have a mind control device called the Persuadertron.
  • In My Sims, one of the tasks you may get from Dr. F is to build a Zap-o-Tron. Apparently, its function is to sit around, and when a Sim touches it, it zaps them.
  • The Enertron in Chrono Trigger gives you a full night's sleep in a few seconds. HP and MP restored! ...but you're still hungry.
  • Kingdom of Loathing has the Annoy-o-Tron 5000, which emits low-frequency waves that enrage monsters all over the Kingdom.
  • Tron Bonne from Mega Man Legends, though she's actually a human girl.
  • Gadgetron in the Ratchet and Clank series.
    • Also, the Groovatron.
  • Maimtron 9000, a clockwork Humongous Mecha in Sam & Max Season 2.
  • Militron from Faces of Evil GO AND KILL!
  • Little Big Planet 2 has the Negativitron and, at one point, "Positivitron beams."
  • Carltron, Professor Ruffleberg's butler (and also the Final Boss) from Secret of Evermore.
  • The Gravitron in VVVVVV.

Web Comics

Western Animation

  • Dexter made a device in his laboratory he called the "Beard-A-Tron" to grow one for him.
    • Interestingly it never comes up in the Tron episode.
  • One episode of Darkwing Duck has positrons and negatrons, described as "the basic building blocks of good and evil".
  • The SpongeBob SquarePants episode "SB-129" had Squidward traveling to the future and meeting a cyborg version of Spongebob named Spongetron.
  • Evil Emperor Zerg's Zergatronic Mega Ray.
  • Megatron
    • The G1 Autobots' main computer system on Earth was Teletron 1, or Teletron 2 for the one on their home planet (Cybertron, another NameTron example) from season 3.

Real Life

  • Generically, any large-size video screen in a stadium is referred to as a Jumbotron.
    • Sony used -tron before the (original, non generic) JumboTron, with their Trinitron aperture grille CRTs.
    • The University of Texas has one that is over 7,000 square feet. It's nicknamed the Godzillatron.
  • ThinkGeek sells a toy called the Annoy-O-Tron. It's a roughly inch-square device you can magnetically affix to anything metallic or just hide in any given cranny, which randomly beeps every so often.
  • The Maltron ergonomic keyboard, named after one of its inventors, Lilian Malt. No, the other inventor's name isn't Ron.
    • Similarly the Emitron line of early (1930s/50s) television cameras were named after the manufacturer EMI.
    • However, the magnetron in a microwave oven was not invented by Mr. Magnet. :-P
  • Not related to high-tech, but the Modern Hebrew word for circus is "ziratron," from "zira," ring (i.e. the shape), and "teatron," theater (from the Ancient Greek "theatron"). Also don't forget Metatron, an angel in Judaism. This stems from the original Greek root.
  • "Waitron" is a gender-neutral version of "Waiter/Waitress." A professor I know once claimed to have coined the phrase as a joke, something about equating being described with genderless terminology and being a genderless automaton. He didn't expect the term to catch on.
  • The "Orgasmatron" is a head massaging device!
  • The Cyclotron, a type of particle accelerator.
  • The device inside your microwave oven that produces the microwaves is technically known as a Magnetron. Which is a name just begging to be used by a supervillain.
    • If Danny Ocean qualifies, an actual magnetron was used by a supervillain in Ocean's Thirteen.
    • There's a Pokémon called Magneton [2], if that counts.
  • Let's not forget the Mellotron, a tape-based, pre-sampler keyboard instrument that was capable of reproducing realistic recorded sounds, especially strings, flutes and choirs. Popularized by the likes of The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, The Moody Blues, King Crimson, David Bowie, Pink Floyd, Electric Light Orchestra, The Bee Gees, Yes, Genesis, Led Zeppelin, etc., etc. in The Sixties and The Seventies.
  • There's an amusement park ride called the Gravitron (which, depsite the name, actually uses centrifugal force).

Notes

  1. "trace on", to track the order of code execution
  2. the evolved form of Magnemite
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