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Sallah: Please, what does it always mean, this... this "Junior"?

Professor Henry Jones: That's his name. (points to himself) Henry Jones (points to Indy) Junior.

Indiana Jones: I like "Indiana".

Professor Henry Jones: We named the dog Indiana.

When a character needs a name that tells the audience right away how awesome they are, this trope is one way to do it. The character will have a first name that's interesting and long - at least three syllables long - contrasted by short and unremarkable last name.

Similarly to Mister Strangenoun, the first name is sometimes a cool-sounding noun that isn't normally used as a name. It could also be a made-up word, or an actual name, but only one that's rare enough to still sound unique.

For the last name, "Smith" and "Jones" are the two most used, but any one-syllable name that sounds common and unremarkable also works.


Keeping up with the Joneses:

Comic Books

  • Desolation Jones - While this is not the character's name, the series title fits the bill.

Film

Literature

Live Action TV

Radio

Theatre

Video Games

  • Eulogy Jones from Fallout 3.
  • Time Splitters has an entire family of these spread across all three games and several centuries. The three that are introduced are Peekaboo Jones in 1965, his great-great-grandfather, Elijah Jones from the 1800's and Mordecai Jones from the Robot Wars in the 2200's.

Web Comics

Web Original

  • "Springboard Jones, the Divin' Detective! Vomitorium Jones, the Pukin' P.I.!" - Ludic Log

Western Animation

Real Life

Namesmithing:

Comic Books

  • Sierra Smith, a Western private eye in The DCU.

Film

Literature

Live Action TV

Video Games

Real Life

Other Surnames:

Comic Books

  • Jubilation Lee
  • Batman's Hamilton Hill
  • Amadeus Cho
  • Manchester Black, Superman's nemesis in the landmark Action Comics #775
  • Jefferson Pierce, AKA Black Lightning, one of the first major African-American superheroes.

Film

Literature

Live Action TV

Professional Wrestling

  • TNA X-Division wrestler Consequences Creed

Toys

Video Games

Web Comics

Web Original

  • Warrick Kaine, Laurel Brant, and Brother Right, to name a few from The Descendants.

Western Animation

Real Life

  • Orangejello Brown and Lemonjello Brown. Well, except not.
  • Capability Brown (not his real name)... and his Discworld counterpart: Bloody Stupid Johnson (his less famous contemporaries being Sagacity Smith and Intuition de vere Slade-Gore.
  • Former US President Rutherford Hayes
    • Preceded by Ulysses S. Grant.
  • Some Naming Guides actually suggest giving longer names to children born in families with a small surname.
  • Harrison Ford. Seems like the Indy connections have come full circle.
  • Keanu Reeves
  • Immanuel Kant, philosopher.
  • Elijah Wood, actor.
  • Cameron Crowe, film director.
  • Julianne Moore, actress.
  • Montgomery Clift, actor.
  • Susannah York, actress.
  • Mackenzie Crook, actor.
  • Oliver Platt, actor.
  • Timothy Spall, actor.
  • Naomi Watts, model and actress.
  • Alejandro Sanz, singer.
  • Vivien Leigh, actress.
  • Josephine Tey, author of mystery novels.
  • Ezekiel Hart, politician and entrepreneur.
  • Gregory Peck, actor.
  • Penélope Cruz, actress.
  • Thelonious Monk, musician.
  • Lucian Freud, painter.
  • Virginia Woolf, writer.
  • Fairuza Balk, actress.
  • Elisha Gray, inventor.
  • Rosamund Pike, actress.
  • Marian Keyes, romance novelist.
  • Deborah Kerr, actress.
  • Adelaide Kane, actress.
  • Angharad James, 17th century Welsh poet.
  • Mahershalalhashbaz Ali, an actor who played Mombasa in Predators.
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