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What's with the name?

Allow us to explain.

It Belongs in a Museum!

Spot all the Nerd References In This Amazing Piece of Art


Danielle and Idan approached artist Aviv Or to make them the very geekiest piece of art that ever was, and I’m going to go out on a limb and say they got what they were looking for. Click here for “Geeky Road” in full-size; you really need to see this one bigger to catch all of the references. For a bonus, Or posted an in-depth guide to her process for creating this piece.

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  • Katharine Ellis Tapley

    My daughter just pointed at this and said “See Cinderella?” I looked, and when I told her I didn’t, she said “She’s Darth Vader for Halloween.”

    My five-year-old just made this cooler. Didn’t think that was possible.

  • Jamie Jeans

    Yeah, it’s a nice piece of art but… well, no people of colour whatsoever.

    I mean, the closest there is is Darth Vadar, and that’s only because James Earl Jones voiced him.

  • Elizabeth Wells

    The best has to be Beaker driving the Delorean :)

  • Samuel

    Vader, Buffy, Hermoine, Wesley, Prime, Tardis (with Clark Kent entering it), The Serenity, The Delorian (with Beaker in it), Batmobile, The Impala (Supernatural) with Loki’s Scepter sticking out, Sherlock (BBC) and Arthur Dent, Buzz and Woody, Enterprise D Sticker, Plants v. Zombies sunflower … I can’t place if the Beetle is anything itself. And Prime has a bumper sticker I can’t read

  • Anonymous

    I agree. With all the British references, at least give us Maurice Moss from IT Crowd.

    Seriously, almost everything in here has a UK connection. So why skip that one?

  • Anonymous

    Portal reference in the writing on the wall (The cake is a lie). I can’t read the bumper sticker or translate the Hebrew. I wanted to think the bug was Herbie, but there’s no 53 on the side. The only other bug I know is Harry Dresden’s and it’s multiple colors and a lot more beat up.

  • Cy

    LOTR license plate on the Beetle. I thought maybe the beetle was Herbie but there’s no 53 on the side.

  • Anonymous

    Ohhhh, so it isn’t Hebrew! Derp. Totally misinterpreted the processing post. I suck as a fan. And yes, LOTR is perfect.

  • Anonymous

    Ohhhh, so it isn’t Hebrew! Derp. Totally misinterpreted the processing post. I suck as a fan. And yes, LOTR is perfect.

  • Alice Ruppert

    the bumper sticker looks elvish to me

  • Alice Ruppert

    the bumper sticker looks elvish to me

  • Cy

    Figured out the Prime bumper sticker too. The link to the process above has a zoomed in image. It’s Josiah Bartlet for President which google tells me is the West Wing.

  • Samuel

    This was art done on request/commission for someone, they asked for those specific things I presume.

  • Rebecca Pahle

    Honestly, I’d normally agree with you, but the couple who commissioned just wanted their personal favorite characters to be in it. It’s not like this was intended as some general overview of geekdom.

  • SD fan

    It looks a little like Emma’s VW bug from Once Upon A Time, but not quite yellow enough. Maybe?

  • Samuel

    The color is right to be Herbie, but yes, no 53 =(

  • Cy

    Nice spot on the Portal reference.

  • Jamie Jeans

    Which, to me, says something of geekdom if your collection of personal geekdom is all white.

  • Lisa Liscoumb

    Ah, I assumed the potted plant was a reference to Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

  • Lisa Liscoumb

    Yes, it says that’s their personal collection of geekdom that reflects their interests is their choice. If you want to commission a piece with your personal collection of geekdom that reflects your interests that contains PoC then that’s your choice. As Rebecca so correctly commented, it’s not like they are saying “this is what geekdom is to everyone”. They’re saying “this is what it is to us”.

  • Rebecca Pahle

    Nobody’s arguing that the lack of diversity in geekdom is anything but awful. But calling out two people because their personal favorite characters are white is uncalled for.

  • Elizabeth Wells

    Huh, without zooming in I’d assumed the plant was from SuperMario, but it has a face.

  • Anonymous

    It was a commission. The one making the request chose all of the elements from THEIR favorite things and it’s intended for THEIR personal living space. Would it be nice if that had included, say, Lando instead of Vader or Ford instead of Dent? Sure, but Vader is more iconic and Dent is a double reference, since Martin Freeman played Dent and Watson. Maybe be glad it didn’t include the Shyamalan version of the Avatar. ;) Sure, there are lots of references that COULD have been made, but for someone’s personal enjoyment I’m not going to pitch a fit over it. Would the color of the buyer make a difference? If they’re black or Israeli or whatever, does that make it OK for them to like these characters or are they somehow betraying their race by liking a bunch of blancos? If you want to get into the problem of lack of diversity in iconic geekdom characters, go right ahead, but blaming a couple of individuals you know literally nothing about (beyond them having good taste in geek properties) is rude.

  • Anonymous

    Yes. Good. Love it. Even if Bartlet is white. ;)

  • http://www.commonplacebook.com electrasteph

    Oops, you spotted the one I thought I was adding

  • Anonymous

    Maybe they just wanted a beetle in tribute to the Beatles. LOL!

  • http://www.aeryllou.tumblr.com/ Aeryl

    The plant is from Plants Vs Zombies, it’s a sunflower that enables you to grow more plants.

  • http://elisabethflaum.wordpress.com/ Elwyne

    missed that! genius! :D

  • http://elisabethflaum.wordpress.com/ Elwyne

    they did. the artist’s writeup linked above is actually really interesting.

  • Christina Faith

    I read on another blog that there are 22 geek references in this picture but I can only find 19. What am I missing? I’m losing my mind!

    Vader, Buffy, Hermione, Westley, Portal writing on the wall, PvZ sunflower, elvish bumper sticker, Woody and Buzz, DeLorean, Beaker, Sherlock, Arthur Dent, Impala, Loki’s scepter, Batmobile, Serenity, Optimus Prime, Tardis, Superman.

    I see stickers on the Beatle and Optimus and writing on the curb to the far right but I can’t make out what they are.

  • Christina Faith

    Although I did mistake Loki’s scepter for a Klingon bat’leth at first. Whoops…

  • Mark Matson

    Shouldn’t Buffy be barefoot? You know, ’cause she died.

  • Rebecca Pahle

    The sticker on the Beatle/Beatle is the Enterprise. Someone else pointed out that there’s a West Wing sticker on Optimus. And the writing on the curb is the artist’s signature.

    So that’s 21. ARRRRGH!

  • Christina Faith

    Aargh, we’re so close. COME ON, INTERWEBS, WE CAN DO THIS!

  • Emily Walton

    It’s just “Serenity”, as Inara pointed out :-p

  • Emily Walton

    Maybe Abbey Road is the 22nd reference?

  • Kathy

    I think Herbie has some non-decal time in the movies, but Herbie was an older model. The rear light housings on the Type 1 Sedan in the picture are more 70s and I think those are the non-full-moon hubcaps from the early 70s superbeetle. Herbie was also a semi-convertible with a canvas soft top. (Yes, I’m geeky about more than SF!)

  • http://technicalluddite.com/ Hannele Kormano

    I, too, wanted it to be Herbie. Alas, it was merely in the original photograph.

  • http://technicalluddite.com/ Hannele Kormano

    They might be thinking the VW Beetle is Herbie from the Love Bug, but since it was also in the original photo, it really should have a 53 on the side.

  • Robert Vary

    Oh, I totally missed that too! I glanced and assumed it was Watson. Wrong Freeman.

  • Penny Marie Sautereau

    Let’s see… Star Wars (Vader), Buffy, Hermoine, Dread Pirrate Westley Roberts, TARDIS, BTTF DeLorean, Burton Batmobile, Bluesmobile, Herbie the love bug, Optimus Prime, Sherlock.

    I am unable to make out the flying object in the sky, who’s beside Sherlock, or who’s coming out of the TARDIS because the pic is too small to discern them. I am also unsure if “The Beatles Abby Road cover” counts as a geek reference or justy an obvious observation.

  • Jamie Jeans

    *laughs* Oh, wow… I’m being rude? That’s brilliant… this entire response to my one critical comment can basically be translated as

    “I’m not racist! I’m not racist! You’re being rude!”

    Seriously, I think the art is nice and the influence in it is clever, and I KNOW it’s a commission, but guess what? A lack of diversity was my one minor issue with it. I didn’t even rant hard about it. I was just pointing it out.

    But everyone else’s comments to this have been pretty damned telling, that’s for sure.

  • Amy W

    Actually, that WAS the reason the beetle is on the original album cover!

  • Amy W

    I would appreciate that, because MY personal hugest geekdom is Beatles stuff, so I like that it’s not written off as “too mainstream! Obviously can’t be geeky!” I can SHOW you just how geeky a Beatlemaniac can be…!

  • The Alien

    I thought it was Dresden’s VW as well. But yes, it’s not beat up enough.

  • Cy

    You’re awesome. Just thought you should know that in case it hasn’t been said enough.

  • Anonymous

    There probably are times when I’m casually racist without realizing it, but I do try to keep a watch on that and I hope I avoid the uglier parts of it.

    If I’d commissioned a “fave geek characters” piece for myself I can’t guarantee that my top ten would include any nonwhite characters unless I specifically set out to include them in order to “prove” I’m not racist. Well, no, SLJ’s Nick Fury might be in there just because he’s a badass. And has an eyepatch. But still. I don’t think tokenism is a huge improvement over racism, casual or otherwise. Which is worse: failing to include POC because they don’t appear in your topmost crop of favorites? Or only including them in order to “look good” to others? And who’s to say people can’t simply have ten favorites who just happen to be white? They’re certainly the most prevalent race when it comes to the geek world.

    Racial (and gender) diversity in fandom- and elsewhere- is a huge issue that definitely needs to be fixed a lot better than it has so far. Your comment, however, singles out two individuals for failing to include any nonwhites and implies that this is wrong, or at least disappointing. Maybe attention should stay focused on the larger problem instead of trying to police individual fans for their preferences.

  • Ashe

    I understand your frustration here (it starts feeling like another drop in the ocean, doesn’t it), BUT. This is just a commissioned piece of art.

    If this were, say, a big advertisement representing geek culture, I’d be more irritated as it would be a more significant form of erasure. As it stands, this is a couple wanting some art of characters they like.

    Also, Zorro’s a POC. Light-skinned, sure, but still a POC.

  • Ashe

    Your daughter is ADORABLE.

  • Ashe

    It fascinates me how I never get tired of Beatle’s photo parodies.

    It’s like wacky Disney Princess fanarts. It just stays great.

  • Amy W

    It’s like an extra meta-geeky-reference thrown in just for fun!

  • Anonymous

    …I want the fic of Superman jumping into the Tardis.