With obsessive fandoms built around social-networking teenage superstars and smash franchises like Twilight and Harry Potter, there’s no doubt that pop culture directly influences baby names. (Especially if the parents are relatively young and are actual fans of these celebrities and movie/TV characters.) Now the fun is in guessing which people have contributed to the 100 most popular baby names of 2011.
First, let’s look at the girls. I’m not even going to bother with Isabella, because that name will be popular for like the next decade. Not surprisingly, there’s a lot of cringeworthy spellings here (Makayla, anyone?); it seems as if the influences are split between characters and actual celebrities.
#2 – Emma
No shit, man. All the parents are naming their girls Emma hoping she’ll grow up to be like Emma Watson. (You’ve also got Emma Roberts and Emma Stone as supporting evidence.)
#22 – Peyton
Sounds like some parents were having early nostalgia for One Tree Hill, even though the actress who played Peyton Sawyer, Hilarie Burton, isn’t coming back for the final season in January.
#38 – Aaliyah
It is the tenth anniversary of her death; she died in a plane crash a little over two weeks before 9/11, actually.
#61 – Scarlett
Scarlett Johansson‘s nude photos scandal may have made us respect her nudity clause less, but it seems that it inspired several parents to make her their daughters’ namesake.
#69 – Kennedy
Maybe parents felt sorry for Russell Armstrong‘s daughter?
And then the boys…