This is a list of confirmed or irrefutable allusions and references of movies, television, and miscellaneous pop culture seen on Lost (per transcript verbatim and/or crew citation). As it is a list of miscellany, it primarily lists movies, TV and comic art content that is not included in other cultural references pages.

For references from shows, movies, and other outside sources to Lost, see Outside references to Lost.

The full list of direct references to Movies, TV or miscellaneous pop culture is sorted by name below. Only direct references or influences confirmed by major contributors to the production team are given.

Main Articles
Ref-alias-mini.png Alias
Ref-bluedanube-mini.png The Blue Danube
Ref-redsox-mini.png Boston Red Sox
Ref-comic-mini.png Green Lantern and Flash
To2C-Carrie.JPG Stephen King
Ref-starwars-mini.png Star Wars
Ref-voltron-mini.png Voltron
Ref-watchmen-mini.png Watchmen
Ref-wizardofoz-mini.png The Wizard of Oz
Ref-pi-mini.png π

20000 Leagues under the Sea (Movie)

Altered States (Movie)

Alias (TV)

Main article: Alias

Back to the Future

[Miles looks at Jack and points at Kate, emphasizing her point. Miles walks over to the table where Hurley is inspecting his hand.]
MILES: What the hell are you doing, Tubby?
HURLEY: Checking to see if I'm disappearing.
MILES: What?
HURLEY: "Back to the Future," man. We came back in time to the island and changed stuff. So if little Ben dies, he'll never grow up to be big Ben, who's the one who made us come back here in the first place. Which means we can't be here. And therefore, dude? We don't exist.
MILES: You're an idiot. [Takes a seat at the table]
MILES: Yeah. It doesn't work like that. You can't change anything. Your maniac Iraqi buddy shot Linus. That is what always happened. It's just...we never experienced how it all turns out.
[Hurley looks at Jack, confused.]
HURLEY: This is really confusing. .

The Blue Danube (Cartoon)

Main article: The Blue Danube

Boston Red Sox (Sports team)

Main article: Boston Red Sox
  • "That's why the Red Sox will never win the World Series." was a phrase repeatedly used by Christian Shephard to describe his thoughts on fate. ("Outlaws")
  • The Red Sox winning the World Series was a clip Ben showed to Jack on the Hydra television. ("The Glass Ballerina")
    • This tape, entitled RED SOX, was later "taped over" by Ben, with footage of Charles Widmore beating one of Ben's "people", which he showed to Locke. ("The Other Woman")
  • Jack asks Frank if the Red Sox really did win the World Series. ("The Economist")
  • Jack scoffs at the headline, "Yankees bludgeon Red Sox in Series Sweep", exclaiming "A-Rod", a reference to the Yankees' successful and controversial third-baseman, Alex Rodriguez. ("Something Nice Back Home")

The Brady Bunch (TV)

Celtic FC (Sports team)

  • Desmond sings "The Celtic Song" which is sung by supporters of the Scottish football club. His girlfriend Ruth also says that Desmond's only religious experience while they dated regarded Celtic winning "the cup". ("Catch-22")

Dallas Cowboys (Sports Team)

  • As Lafleur and Juliet are being led up the dock to the sub, Sawyer says: "We'll bet the Cowboys in the '78 Super Bowl. We're gonna be rich", referencing the Dallas Cowboys 27-10 win over the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XII. ("Follow the Leader")

Disney (Theme parks)

The Flintstones (Cartoon)

Gilligan's Island (TV)

Green Lantern and Flash (Comic)

Main article: Comic book

Harry Potter (Movie)

Little House on the Prairie (TV)

Lord of the Rings, The (Movie)

Memoirs of a Geisha (Movie)

Mission Impossible III (Movie)

Mr. Ed (TV)

Muppet Show, The (TV)

Nash Bridges (TV)

New York Yankees (Sports team)

Main article: New York Yankees
  • Jack asks Frank, "Did the Sox really win the Series?", to which Frank replies, "Don't even get me started on that, I grew up in the Bronx", which references Frank's allegiance to the Yankees. ("The Economist")
  • Jack scoffs at the headline, "Yankees bludgeon Red Sox in Series Sweep", exclaiming "A-Rod", a reference to the Yankees' successful and controversial third-baseman, Alex Rodriguez. ("Something Nice Back Home")

The Office (TV)

  • Charlie's date, Lucy, mentioned that her dad was out of town looking to buy a paper company in Slough. This was a reference to the British comedy The Office, which took place at a paper company in Slough, which some of the writers are reputedly fans of. ("Homecoming")

The Outsiders (Movie)

Power Rangers (TV)

  • Walt is watching Power Rangers: SPD on the hotel room television. ("Exodus, Part 1")
  • Several Power Rangers: Operation Overdrive items are visible in the toy store where Jin purchases the stuffed pandas. ("Ji Yeon")

The continuity issue with these is that, officially, the plane crashed in September 2004. Power Rangers: SPD first aired in February 2005 and Power Rangers: Operation Overdrive began in February 2007.

Pi (Movie)

Main article: Pi

Rambo (Movie)

  • Hurley tells Jack he shouldn't go to the helicopter because "those Rambo guys" are heading there. John James Rambo was a troubled war vet and a Green Beret in a series of movies that highlight his survival skills and special ops training. "Going Rambo" has become synonymous with a person who uses excessive gun violence. ("There's No Place Like Home, Part 2")
  • Rose tells Bernard "Remember you're a dentist, you're not Rambo" as he joins an armed mission with Jin and Sayid. ("Through the Looking Glass, Part 1")

Say Anything (Movie)

  • The movie "Say Anything" was referenced to by Hurley when he requested the radio from Sayid to woo Libby, describing how in the movie the protagonist uses a boombox to please his crush. ("Two for the Road").
  • "Us", "Up", "So", and "Security" are all spoken in dialogue ("Two for the Road"), denoting Peter Gabriel album titles after Hurley refers to Peter in reference to "Say Anything".

Shining, The (Movie)

Star Trek (TV)

  • Star Trek was mentioned by Boone to Locke in reference to the "redshirt" stock character (Terry O'Quinn, who plays Locke, had previously guest-starred on Star Trek: The Next Generation). ("All the Best Cowboys Have Daddy Issues") The redshirt reference was later discussed in detail by Damon Lindelof [1] and developed into fan name for "background character" Flight 815 survivors.
  • A life-size poster of Captain Kirk is visible in Damon Lindelof's office in the Season 3 DVD extra "Lost in a Day", at the "4:39 pm Los Angeles" segment.
  • During a flashback in "Do No Harm", Jack Shephard confides in his father before his wedding that he is having difficulty writing his vows, to which Christian Shephard responds with "you're a doctor, not a writer." This is a reference to the famous catchphrase of Doctor Leonard H. McCoy.
  • In "Born to Run" Sawyer calls Jin Sulu. Sulu was an Asian character on the original series.
  • In "The Beginning of the End" Sawyer calls Desmond Scotty. Montgomery 'Scotty' Scott is a character in the original series of Star Trek.
  • Charlotte jokes that she speaks Klingon (in addition to Korean). ("This Place Is Death")
  • In the American broadcast of "The Variable" the Lost intertitle was suddenly placed among stars, with a Starship Enterprise soaring through the "O" in Lost as part of a promotion for J.J. Abrams' new film Star Trek. startrek.gif
  • Damon Lindelof said in the Season 4 commentary that the finale of Star Trek: The Next Generation, "All Good Things", was a big influence on the episode The Constant.
  • In "What Kate Does" Dogen has a baseball placed on his desk. In Deep Space Nine, Benjamin Sisko, the commander of the station, used to have a baseball prominently placed on his desk throughout the entire run of the show. In the pilot episode, he used the baseball as a metaphor to explain the nature of linear time to the inhabitants of the wormhole, who experienced time all at once.
  • In one of his flash-sideways, John Locke (at the time a bald, wheelchair-bound teacher) asks for Earl Grey tea. This was likely a nod to Sir Patrick Stewart, who played both Captain Jean-Luc Picard (who always requested Earl Grey tea and was bald) and Professor Charles Xavier (a bald, wheelchair-bound teacher. ("The Substitute")
  • Both Terry O'Quinn and Fionnula Flanagan guest-starred (in separate episodes) in the final season of Star Trek: The Next Generation.
  • J.J. Abrams directed the 2009 film.

Star Wars (Movie)

Main article: Star Wars

Subterranean Homesick Blues (Music video)

To Kill a Mockingbird (Movie)

Terminator (Movie)

  • In a decisive rebellious confrontation with Jack, Locke told the remaining survivors "If you want to live, you need to come with me". It is likely that this is a reference to the movie Terminator in which rebel Kyle Reese says "Come with me, if you want to live". ("The Beginning of the End")

The Twilight Zone (TV)

  • J.J. Abrams has confirmed that the opening credits of Lost were intended as an homage to The Twilight Zone, and that he himself designed them on his own laptop. The choice that the credits be black and white is one of the components to that homage. Source: [2].
  • When Hurley and Sayid were talking about the WXR radio broadcast, the camera panned to a starry sky after Hurley said, "Or anytime. Just kidding, dude." This was a confirmed reference to The Twilight Zone by Damon Lindelof on the Season 1 DVD and J.J. Abrams in a New York Times interview. ("The Long Con")
  • In almost every opening sequence of the various seasons of The Twilight Zone, there is a close-up shot of one single open eye, similar to the opening shots of many episodes of Lost.

Voltron (Toy)

Main article: Voltron

The Wages of Fear (Movie)

  • The name Montand refers to a character in The Wages of Fear, as confirmed by Carlton Cuse in the 5/19/06 podcast. The plot of the extraordinarily tense movie involves transport of dangerous explosives in a desperate situation with few safety precautions. It also features the idea of separating into two groups that keep their distance from one another, planning for the "worst-case-scenario" of one of them not making it; that the other will reach the destination with adequate explosives to accomplish the mission (much like Jack's idea). ("Exodus, Part 1")

War Games (Movie)

  • In Enter 77 the computer asks John, "Would you like to play a game of chess?" In the 1983 film War Games, Matthew Broderick plays a teenage hacker (David) who accidentally begins a nuclear countdown with a super-computer named The WOPR, which initially asks him "Would you like to play a game?" When David chooses "Global Thermo-Nuclear War". The WOPR responds, "Wouldn't you prefer a nice game of chess?"

Watchmen (Comic)

Main article: Watchmen

The Wizard of Oz

Main article: The Wizard of Oz
  • The title of the Season 3 episode The Man Behind the Curtain is a reference to the 1939 film, The Wizard of Oz. When Toto pulls the curtain away to reveal the man creating the Voice of the Wizard, the Voice says: "Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain."

The X Files

6x02 ufo.jpg
  • When Bernard returns from the lavatory, Rose flips over the fictional magazine she has been reading, Weekly Woodsman, to reveal an advertisement for Morley Cigarettes featuring the phrase, "The truth is out there..." accompanied by a picture of a UFO. The Smoking Man character notably smoked Morleys, and the phrase, along with a similar picture, was often seen on a poster hanging in Fox Mulder's office. ("LA X, Part 1")

Other confirmed influences

The following works are not directly referenced in Lost, but are confirmed influences.

  • Both J.J. Abrams and Damon Lindelof have each confirmed in interviews, including one with T.V. Guide, that the 1960s television program The Prisoner was one of the influences for not only Lost, but Alias as well. Source: [3]. Lindelof even credited The Prisoner as "ultimately what the show aspires to be" during a 2006 question and answer session at Wizard World LA. Source: [4]

See also