D&D General Oddball mentions of D&D in popular culture.

Puddles

Explorer
Hmm, I remember a scene from a movie with a group of "nerds" playing D&D with large dragon miniatures, and as they go into combat, they all start betting wads of cash on which will win the fight. I thought it was Independence Day but a quick search is coming up blank.

I wish 2 things:
1. I could remember what movie it was from
2. That my games of D&D were that wild
I found it! X Files or the Lone Gunmen spin-off

Check out these mad lads

Why aren’t we all playing D&D like this?!
 
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I think this was out of left field at the time. Unlike nowadays, D&D was mostly unheard of by the public at large when this came out.
Granted its always been a niche hobby but I think as it was newer back in the early 80s it was piquing peoples interest I'd say even people who didnt play were aware of it say more than people in the 90s.
 

Snarf Zagyg

Notorious Liquefactionist
Granted its always been a niche hobby but I think as it was newer back in the early 80s it was piquing peoples interest I'd say even people who didnt play were aware of it say more than people in the 90s.

You have to remember that "mass/pop culture" was a lot different back then than it is today.

There was no internet. There were no cell phones for regular people. Cable TV wasn't that widespread until the later part of the 80s. The first time I used an ATM was ... 1988 (before that, they were for the Big City).

It was a different time.

Given the culture of the time, yeah, D&D was huge, especially from the late 70s to the late 80s. Everyone knew about it. Everyone.

You could find D&D in every mall (Waldenbooks, B. Daltons, KB Toys). Sears had D&D. It had a magazine (Dragon) and a Saturday morning cartoon series (from '83-'85). If you didn't play it or have a "Red Box" somewhere, you likely had a friend or a cousin that did.

Kind of like trapper keepers- if you were in around during the 80s, you know all about 'em.
 




In the 1980s I used a backgammon double cube for D&D when I was DMing. It was my "God Dice."

If one of my smart-ass, edgy teenager friends got really unruly, the doubling-cube decided how many hit dice the lightning bolt that the gods tossed at them was.

You can actually roll a backgammon doubling cube on anydice.com; tell it 'output 2^(d6-1)'.

You can roll, say d4^d4, which has a minimum and mode of 1, a median value of 6, a mean value of 30, a standard deviation of 60, and a max of 256. ;)
 

Richards

Legend
Giles, Xander, and some of the Buffy crew played D&D in one of the last episodes of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" to blow of some nervous energy before attacking the Hellmouth or something.

I also distinctly recall seeing D&D books and boxed sets in the background of Charles and Mambo's room in the old "Duckman" cartoon.

Johnathan
 

Oofta

Legend
Giles, Xander, and some of the Buffy crew played D&D in one of the last episodes of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" to blow of some nervous energy before attacking the Hellmouth or something.

I also distinctly recall seeing D&D books and boxed sets in the background of Charles and Mambo's room in the old "Duckman" cartoon.

Johnathan
Speaking of Buffy, there was also an episode where they were doing research and Xander thought he had found a reference before realizing he was actually looking at a Monster Manual.
 

Another one from the archives, 'Freaks and Geeks'

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More recently the Australian version of the reality show Beauty and the Geek had a challenge where the 'Beauties' had to co-DM a scene in a game of D&D.
 

My Little Pony (also owned by Hasbro) has Ogres and Oubliettes as an in-universe version of DnD. They don't even try to hide it; I think there was a beholder.
 


Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
I don’t know if they are oddball, but many of the references in popular media include:
ET
Big Bang theory
Cloak & Dagger
Stranger things (of course)
Reno 911
Air Heads movie
IT Crowd
Community
Stephan Colbert frequently
Mangellio (sp) clap back against a pro wrestler on Twitter
Futurama
Adventure Time has a very D&D feel to it.
 

There's a Hardy Boys novel called "Dungeon of Doom" from the 80s that centers around the duo playing an obvious D&D expy, then getting trapped in a LARP style dungeon built in an old mine. I had it in a box set that also included the book where learned about the internet (cradle modem era) and had to save the life of their sysop.
 

My Little Pony (also owned by Hasbro) has Ogres and Oubliettes as an in-universe version of DnD. They don't even try to hide it; I think there was a beholder.

Which of course is one of the few monsters that's Product Identity (i.e. copyrighted), so it's only in there because it's a Hasbro product.

It's a pretty clear way to make an expy--there are plenty of retroclones, particularly OSR; so far I can find Bandits & Basilisks, Bandits & Battlecruisers, Dangers & Dweomers, Exemplars & Eidolons, Hulks & Horrors, Mages & Monsters, Shinobi & Samurai, Swords & Six-Siders, but I know there are others.
 

cmad1977

Hero
Last night I was going off the top of my head, but wikipedia has many more references. I still say that Borderlands 2, Tiny Tina's Adventures, while being a FPS and using Borderlands mechanics, felt more like a D&D game than most actual licensed D&D games lol.

That was an amazing expansion.

Coupled with the fact that the entire game was the DMs way of dealing with loss was a pretty cool touch.
 

Bolares

Hero
Last of us 2 has an Critical role/D&D easter egg. you can find a table set up with a DM screen, terrain and RPG books in it. In another room there is a mini painting set up.
 


Wolfram stout

Adventurer
A bit of an older one, That 70's Show. Alice Cooper is on the show and Eric thinks he is going to hit on Donna, turns out he ask her if she wants to play D&D, then at the end you see him playing D&D at the Radio Station with others.

That one hit me out of left field.
 


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