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References to popular culture in Resident Evil

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See also: References to Resident Evil in popular culture

When planning the early Resident Evil titles, its developers received much inspiration from popular American horror and B-horror films that had made their way into Japan over the years.


Alien series

The way the G-larvae exit their host bodies is an homage to the Chestburster alien infants in the Alien films. Their bodies are also shaped very similar. The Plaga C in Resident Evil 4 is comparable to the Facehugger in its spider-like body plan as well as its instinct to latch onto potential hosts' faces.

The scene in Resident Evil 4 where Luis Sera is impaled by Saddler is an homage to Aliens, where the Queen impales Bishop with its tail. The only difference in these scenes is that the Queen rips Bishop in half after impaling him. Alongside this, the concept of a militarily-trained unit going up against unknown monsters in Aliens is comparable to the S.T.A.R.S. teams in Resident Evil.[1][excerpt 1]


La Femme Nikita

Nikita cover (movie)

DVD cover for Nikita (La Femme Nikita).

Ada Wong La Femme

An official render of Ada Wong, in a homage to the previous picture.

Ada Wong's design is based on Nikita. While this present in Resident Evil 2, Separate Ways makes this much clearer by copying a memorable scene.

Lost Souls

The "Hallucination" build for the then-in development Resident Evil 4, and to a lesser extent the character of the Hook Man, was derived from a scene from the 2000 American horror film Lost Souls. Specifically, the sourced scene was the main character Maya Larkin (portrayed by Winona Ryder), after washing her hands in a bathroom, proceeding to hallucinate her being in a derelict building while being pursued by a crazed killer.[2]


The introduction of the Neptunes in the original Resident Evil is an homage to Steven Spielberg's Jaws (1975). Like how Spielberg repeatedly switched to the shark's perspective when an attack scene was about to happen (or the audience be teased to one), the shark was introduced in the game through a POV scene with the shark swimming to the player.[1][excerpt 2]

In Resident Evil: Revelations, shortly after "Jack Norman" sent a video demonstrating the effects of the t-Abyss Virus by using the virus to turn several fish into Ghiozzo to both the Queen Zenobia and the BSAA headquarters, Quint Cetcham commented that they were "turning guppies into Jaws!" in response, referring to the titular shark from the film.

Little Shop of Horrors

The Plant 42 boss in Resident Evil is a direct reference to the creature in that film.[1]

Living Dead series

Resident Evil 2 itself is comparable with Day of the Dead; like in this film, the number of uninfected is considerably lower than the number of zombies and survivors are forced to hide in secure places.[1][excerpt 3]


RESEARCH ON BIOHAZARD 2 final edition mentions the 1995 American film "Species" as one source of inspiration. While B-movies had already used the idea of the monster using a character as a breeding tool, Species broke convention by making all victims male, whereas female victims were the norm.[1][excerpt 4] This attitude to convention is portrayed in Resident Evil 2 with the deaths of male characters Brian Irons and Ben Bertolucci.

The Terminator

The reload animation for Resident Evil 2's shotgun is a reference to James Cameron's Terminator 2: Judgement Day (1991), in which Linda Hamilton's character Sarah Connor reloads a shotgun with its own weight. Both the game and film use the Remington M870.[1][excerpt 5] Individual models of the Tyrant series of Bio Organic Weapons are numbered in a similar way as the Terminator androids.

The Thing

The Adjule's ability to split its head open from the sides is a reference to the 1982 remake of The Thing, where the alien - disguised as a dog - performs the same action. Simmon's transformations in the sixth game are also a possible nod.


The way that Alfred Ashford crossdresses as his sister Alexia is done in a similar manner to Norman Bates in the Alfred Hitchcock film Psycho.

Pulp Fiction

The name of the Handcannon was likely inspired by the 1994 Quentin Tarantino film Pulp Fiction, in which John Travolta's character Vincent Vega comments "Did you forget that someone was in there with a goddamn handcannon?" after narrowly surviving an attack from a revolver-wielding assailant, the weapon in question being a Taurus Model 698.




Concept art of the Made In Heaven logo

  • In her first appearance in Resident Evil 2, Claire Redfield wears a vest adorned with a logo and the title of the album Made in Heaven by Queen, which is also the title of the second track on the album. The same logo is also worn by her brother, Chris.
  • In Resident Evil CODE:Veronica, Claire's new vest reads Let Me Live, a reference to the third track on the same album.
  • In Resident Evil 0, Billy Coen has a styled tribal tattoo on his right arm. The design actually spells out Mother Love, the title of track four on the Queen album Made In Heaven
  • In Resident Evil 4's original GameCube release, in the inventory screen, "My Life Has Been Saved" can be read in the background, another reference to the soundtrack in Queen's Made In Heaven Album. This however, was removed in the PS2 Version due to the nature of low resolution textures, as a consequence of porting PS2 Bonus data to the Wii version, this was overwritten and as a result all later (HD) Versions were based on this version and the reference was lost.


Capcom games

There are a number of references to Capcom games in the franchise as easter eggs. Posters advertising Dino Crisis can be found in the Raccoon General Hospital in Resident Evil 3: Nemesis, and the video arcade in Resident Evil Survivor.

Street Fighter is referenced heavily across the franchise as, unlike Dino Crisis, it continued to be relevant. The earliest reference is in Resident Evil 2, where a store is called Arukas, this being Sakura spelt backwards. A poster for the comics was displayed on a wall in Lott and Lily Klein's bedroom in Survivor. Some of Wesker moves share names with Sagat's moves from Street Fighter II.

Ghosts 'n' Goblins is referenced twice in the franchise. It appears first as a poster in Lott and Lily's bedroom, and again in Resident Evil 6 as an arcade machine in Lanshiang.

Other games

In Resident Evil 4, on a bulletin board in a room with security monitors, there is an image of a hamster-like monster. This is actually the cover art of Bloodwych, an old dungeon-crawler RPG for various 8-bit home computers.[3]



  • The Tyrants are similar in a way to the Evangelion units from the same Anime /Manga, as both are created based via organic organisms, and both are stored in alike capsules which sport a T (as for Tyrant and Test types).
  • The experimental thermobaric weapon used in Resident Evil 3: Nemesis references the N2 weapon in this series. Both are designed to be incredibly powerful non-nuclear explosives.

Other references

A poster for Le Chat Noir, a nineteenth century Parisian cabaret club, can be seen in various places in Resident Evil Survivor, particularly the Southend Theater.



  1. Excerpt from RESEARCH ON BIOHAZARD 2 final edition, p.173:"ゴシックホラーの演出とハードSFを組み合わせて成功をおさめた 『エイリアン』 (’79年・来) の続編。 ただし、 演出は一新され、 重装備に続を固めた宇宙海兵隊が、 群をなして襲いかかるエイリアンと戦う迫力十分のアクション映画に仕上げられている。 「訓練を受けた人間対未知の怪物」 という構図は、 『バイオ』 シリーズの基本コンセプトと合致している。 また、 ウィーヴァー演じるエレン・リプリーは、 同じキャメロン作品の 『ターミネーター』 シリーズでリンダ・ハミルトンが演じたサラ・コナーとともに、 「戦うヒロイン」 のモデルとなった。 ジルやクレアなどにもその影響が見て取れる。"
  2. Excerpt from RESEARCH ON BIOHAZARD 2 final edition, p.184:
    "巨大ザメが人間を襲うというアニマル・パニック物の傑作。 サメの視点で撮られた水中からのショット、 フルオーケストラを使って恐怖をあおるジョン・ウィリアムズの音楽など、 「最後まで怪物の姿を見せない」 という正統派のホラー演出を巧みに駆使して、 圧倒的なサスペンスを生み出していう。 その効果は、 公開年、 日本中で海水浴客を激減させたほど。 スティーヴン・スピルバーグはこれで一気に世界に名を轟かせた。 「バイオ1」 の寄宿舎の地下1階で、 ネプチューン (T-ウィルスを投与されたサメ)がジルを襲うムービーは、 まさにこの映画へのオマジュといっていいだろう。"
  3. Excerpt from RESEARCH ON BIOHAZARD 2 final edition, p.183: "『ゾンビ』 の続編で、 ロメロ・ゾンビ三部作の完結編。 第1作 『ナイト・オブ・ザ・リビングデッド』 で郊外の農村部に出現したゾンビは、 第2作 『ゾンビ』 で都市を制圧。 この第3作のスタート時点では、 すでに地球表面の99%を支配している。これに対し、 人数は地下のシェルターに追い詰められながら、 必死でゾンビへの対策を練っていた。 ところが、 この状況下でも、 科学者と軍人の不毛な対立が続き、 ついには人類の破局が訪れる……。 世紀末SFとしてのイメージが強い作品で、 派手さとグロさでは、 三部作中トップの一本だ。"
  4. Excerpt from RESEARCH ON BIOHAZARD 2 final edition, p.184:
    "バイオテクノロジーによる怪物の創造というのは、 90年代SFのいとつの定番で、 とくに 『ジュラシック・パーク』(93年・米) の大ヒット以降、 作品数が急増している。この作品はそんな中の一本で、 『エイリアン』 など多くの個性的なクリーチャーを生み出したH・R・ギーガーがモンスターデザインを担当している。異星人が子孫を作るために人間を襲うという物語はB級映画ではお馴染みだが、 ちょっと変わっているのは、 異星人が女性に化けて男性の精子を集めようとするところ。 (普通、 女の子を襲うのが一般的)。 この怪物を演じるN・ヘンストリッジが美しく撮れていて印象的だ。"
  5. Excerpt from RESEARCH ON BIOHAZARD 2 final edition, p.185:
    "’84年に公開、大ヒットを記録した『ターミネーター』の続編。武器されキャメロン監督作品らしく、幾多の武器が出てくるが、 なかでも 「バイオ1」 でクリスのメインウェポンとなるレミントン・ショットガンM870が中盤で活躍する。銃自体の重さを利用して次弾を装填するR・ハミルトン扮するサラ・コナーのアクションは、公開当時、多くのガンマニアを魅了した。"
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Saitō (ed.), RESEARCH, pp.183-185
  2. Yasuhisa Kawamura Interview (Project Umbrella). Project Umbrella. Retrieved on 2013-06-24.

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