A chronological listing of all known literary and theatrical productions inspired by Rush, as well as all known occurences of Rush references in pop culture excluding references made during talkshows, gameshows, sporting events, news programs, etc., as they are too numerous to list. Please feel free to email any suggestions.
Defenders #45, by Marvel Comics, March 1977
Published less than a year following the release of 2112, this comic is vaguely drawn from the album's with a pro-individual, anti-collectivist theme. In addition, the comic is "Dedicated to Neil, Geddy, and Alex of RUSH" and also includes a few Rush inspired lines, such as "Truth is false and logic lost" and "become one with the Brotherhood of Man".
"I read that issue and I enjoyed it. The Defenders was a pretty cerebral kind of comic. We were knocked out, and it really meant a lot to us. It was like real credibility. That tiny little line in the comic book meant more to us than a whole issue of Rolling Stone or anything else. It really means something to us because that's a real measure of respect. It's from another artist, and it's like the praise of the praiseworthy." - Neil Peart, Circus, May 12, 1977
Long Live Rock 'N Roll by Rainbow, April 9, 1978
Not exactly a tribute... Polydor Records used an altered version of an original Rush photo in this album's gatefold art. Without Rush's knowledge, the photo of a crowd holding a Rush starman banner was mirrored and airbrushed to read "Long Live Rock 'N Roll" and printed on the album's inside gatefold. The original Rush photo has been included in various Rush media, such as The Words And The Pictures, Vol. I (1979) and Brian Harrigan's Rush (1982), and Rush Beyond The Lighted Stage (2010)
"I was at Oyster Records in NY, and was coming up with ideas for the cover art for Rainbow's Long Live Rock'n'roll...To present the idea to Polydor, I made up a dummy cover with the Rush shot (unretouched) in the centerfold just to demonstrate the advertising shot we intended to take at the next Rainbow concert...Polydor came up with the drawing that was eventually used, and airburshed the 'Rush' shot but never told me they were doing it. The next thing I knew was when I showed up at a Rush show, only to get an earful from the band about the use of their shot on the Rainbow cover. When I finally saw it, I was well choked! But of course I couldn't do a thing about it by then. It took me ages to regarin Rush's trust." - Fin Costello, Classic Rock, September/November 2002
Over The Edge, November 2, 1979
In the opening scene of the film at the recrecation center, a quart of beer is taken away from a teenager who is wearing an A Farewell To Kings tour shirt (the teen is escorted out past a young Matt Dillon, starring in his first film, click the image to enlarge). Ironically, although "Subdivisions" would not be written for a few years yet, this movie is about teenage angst while growing up in a subdivision/planned community, and of course includes a scene in a basement bar.
Apocalypse Comics, by Marvel Comics UK, 1979-1980
Return of the Secaucus 7, September 5, 1980
Rush is mentioned during the bar scene in this movie which inspired The Big Chill. Two of the main characters, Jeff and J.T., are discussing music and flirting with two women at the bar - one of them a music critic. When asked what she listens to, the music critic replies, "Oh, progressive rock mostly: King Crimson, Yes, Genesis, Rush." Country singer J.T. dismisses this as "heavy metal goes to college," but the woman defends her tastes, saying "It's the only thing playing now with any kind of sophisticated melody line that still has its...you know, innocence." She's later impressed with Jeff when he discusses the complexities of the genre.
Sons Of Earth, by Richard Rhodes, May 1981
In this suspense novel, the 16-year-old son of a renowned astronaut is kidnapped by a sociopath and buried alive in a coffin-like box equipped with apparatus to give him fresh air and water. To pass the time and keep his sanity while in the box, the son, who dreams of fame as a rock drummer, practices Neil Peart's drumlines in his head.
Gas, July 24, 1981
This Canadian movie includes a scene where a TV helicopter is circling a busy gas station as "Limelight" is played in the background.
Gregory's Girl, April 23, 1981
The male lead, who also has a drumkit in his room, has two Rush posters on his bedroom wall: a poster of Rush live during the Hemispheres era as well as a promotional poster for All the Worlds A Stage featuring cover images of the first five albums (Rush through All The World's A Stage).
Future War 1986, animated movie, 1982
The English version of this film includes "Witch Hunt" in the soundtrack.
The Modern Day Warrior, WCCW wrestler Kerry von Erich, circa 1982-1984
Before the WWF/WWE and WCW national syndicated shows, the World Class Championship Wrestling show aired from Dallas, Texas. One of the regular stars was Kerry von Erich, aka "The Modern Day Warrior", who used "Tom Sawyer" as his ring entrance music.
Ultima II: Revenge of the Enchantress, video game, June 1, 1982
2112 sighting: during the game there are doors which lead to different time periods, the future one being the year 2112, in which the world has been devastated by the evil enchantress Minax.
The Last American Virgin, July 30, 1982
A character in this teenage comedy is reported to have a Rush sticker on her notebook, seen as she is seen walking down the stairs.
Fast Times At Ridgemont High, August 13, 1982
During the scene in the record store (35 minutes into the movie) where Mike Damone is giving Mark Ratner his five point plan on dating ("When it comes down to making out, whenever possible, put on side one of Led Zeppelin IV."), there is a row of Exit Stage Left albums in the racks under the "Licorice Pizza" sign (they are between Ted Nugent's Great Gonzos and The Cars' Shake It Up).
The Young Ones, British television series, aired November 23, 1982
During the episode titled "Boring", Vyvyan wears a 2112 t-shirt.
Strange Brew, August 26, 1983
Starring Bob and Doug McKenzie (Dave Thomas and Rick Moranis), who drive a red van with a Rush bumper sticker. Previously, Geddy Lee sang on "Take Off", the single from the McKenzie Brothers' comedy album, Great White North.
Synchronicity Concert, concert video by The Police, filmed November 3, 1983
A fan in the crowd can be seen wearing a Rush Signals t-shirt right after "De Do Do Do De Da Da Da".
The Natural, May 11, 1984
2112 sighting: about 46 minutes into the film, when Bump Bailey (Michael Madsen) crashes through the rightfield wall in pursuit of a flyball, two players wearing jersey numbers "21" and "12" race to his aid.
Teachers, October 5, 1984
Three minutes before the end of the movie, as the school is evacuating during a fire alarm, Ralph Macchio asks Nick Nolte "So are you gonna stay or are you gonna go?", Nolte exits the frame and coming up behind him is a short kid with long hair and mirrored aviator sunglasses wearing a gray Moving Pictures t-shirt.
A Nightmare On Elm Street, November 9, 1984
Glenn, played by Johnny Depp, has a Grace Under Pressure album cover poster on the wall above his bed.
The Body Electric, Canadian animated television movie, 1985
Featuring a Rush soundtrack, this half-hour film combines themes and ideas from many Rush songs, particularly "The Body Electric" and "2112". The story takes place after a robot revolution in a futuristic domed city named "Red Sector A". Listed in the order they are played, the soundtrack includes excepts of: Red Sector A, Hemispheres Pt. V., 2112 Overture, Cygnus X-1 Pt. 3, Different Strings, Jacob's Ladder, The Fountain of Lamneth Pt. VI, Xanadu, The Body Electric, Working Man, Hemispheres Pt. V., Marathon, Hemispheres Pt. VI.
MacGyver, television series
In Brazil, this television program about a modern day warrior used "Tom Sawyer" as its theme music.
"...we were told 'Tom Sawyer' was used on Brazilian television as the theme song for 'McGyver'. That's what we said, 'What?'" - Neil Peart, Flying Down To Rio, Leaving Vapor Trails Behind
Mach Rider, video game, October 18, 1985
2112 sighting: the game takes place in the year 2112, and Earth is being invaded ("we have assumed control?"). First released on October 18, 1985 for the Nintendo Entertainment System, as one of the 18 initial launch games, in July 2007 a modified version was released on the Wii's Virtual Console.
1986, television news program, June 10 - December 30, 1986
This American television news program anchored by Roger Mudd and Connie Chung used "Mystic Rhythms" as its theme music.
"I don't know how they came to hear the song, but the show approached us and asked if they could use it. Of course, they didn't pay us anything, but they said they'd give us a credit. How did we feel about it? We thought it was nice." - Neil Peart, Backstage Club Newsletter, March 1990
Cuerdas (Strings), comic by Pepe Gonzalez, February 1986
This comic depicts "2112" and was originally written in Spanish, at La Pagina en Español de Rush (no longer online).
Incident at Channel Q, 1986
This movie, written and directed by Storm Thorgerson (of Hipgnosis), is about a quiet suburban neighborhood which declares war on a heavy metal music video jockey. He then locks himself in the station and plays hard rock videos, one of which is "The Body Electric". "The Camera Eye" is played during a chase scene, and one character is seen wearing a Rush t-shirt.
Degrassi Junior High, Canadian television series
Written Works Of Kevin J. Anderson
Through his writings which ocassionally include RUSH inspirations, author Kevin J. Anderson eventually became friends with Neil Peart. For details regarding the influence of RUSH on his writings, click here.
Kevin J. Anderson discusses the influence of RUSH in his fiction, from an email sent to the National Midnight Star's Jimmy Lang in September 1993:
"My first novel Resurrection, Inc. (1988) is dedicated in part to RUSH, with the mention that the book was entirely inspired by Grace Under Pressure. About six months after the book came out, I got a surprise letter from Neil Peart. He loved the book and complimented me most highly on it (it's out of print now, but you might be able to track down a copy of it in a used book store.) We began corresponding regularly. One of my other novels, The Trinity Paradox (1991), was inspired by the song 'Manhattan Project'. I sent Neil a copy of my novel Lifeline, then a copy of the just-completed manuscript for The Trinity Paradox (which I was calling Timeline, until the publisher made me change it) -- after reading Lifeline (1990) and Timeline, Neil went off to write 'Dreamline', the first cut off Roll The Bones.
Neil has always had aspirations to be a writer himself, and he has written and self-published some fabulous lengthy journals about his various bicycle trips through China, Africa, and the Canadian Rockies. I've read three of them, and remembered them very well.
I got invited to contribute a story to a forthcoming anthology called Shock Rock 2, which will be published next year by Pocket Books, edited by Jeff Gelb. The theme of the anthology is 'horror stories about rock & roll.' I got the idea for 'Drumbeats', about a rock drummer bicycling through Africa between concert tours, and some weird stuff that happens to him. I had the story, but I didn't have the details...neither the details about Africa nor the details about life as a rock star. But Neil did, so I asked if I could lift sections of description from his journals, and get some background from him.
He thought it was a cool idea and gave me permission to do so. I drafted up the story, mailed him a disk, and he gave it a polish and added more details. I did a final polish and sent it off to the editor, who promptly accepted it. It's a genuine collaboration -- I'd say about half the words in the story are Neil's, half mine, and the tale really works, I think. Neil likes it.
I have been substantially inspired by RUSH, and often the music trickles in. Another RUSH-inspired story (though you won't really notice), was published in the January issue of ANALOG magazine, which you should be able to find in a decent library. The story is called 'Music Played on the Strings of Time'. I sent the manuscript to Neil right after I wrote it, and he really liked it."
My full list of novels [as of Sept. 1993] is (* have at least a little RUSH influence in them):
*Resurrection, Inc., 1988
Game's End, 1990
*Lifeline, with Doug Beason, 1990
*The Trinity Paradox, with Doug Beason, 1991
*Afterimage, with Kristine Kathryn Rusch, 1992
Assemblers of Infinity, with Doug Beason, 1993
"For a feature in next month's issue of Prog magazine, the photographer spent many hours setting up a photo shoot of me with part of my music collection in my writing office. Since I do most of my writing outside in nature, we felt this shot was most representative." - Kevin J. Anderson, DuneNovels.com, November, 2009.
The Mighty Quinn, February 16, 1989
As the credits are still rolling at the very beginning of this movie starring Denzel Washington, a live reggae band is performing at a wedding reception. A man in the crowd, watching the dancers, is wearing a faded black Signals t-shirt.
A Farewell to Kings, The Hypernovel, by Christopher P. Simmons, 1990
A "Rush-quoting computer geek" creates a computer network named "Syrinx" which predicts the end of the world. With Rush references sprinkled throughout, Neil Peart praised this novel, saying "I think the story is important one, and I think you have told it well", and "I am truly honored to see Rush lyrics woven into the fabric of your book."
Mystery Science Theater 3000, television series
Rush acknowledges "MST-3K" in the Counterparts linernotes. This sci-fi series featured three characters from the future, who would sit in a theater (we would see their silhouettes from behind) and discuss bad sci-fi movies. Here are some Rush references, although there is no doubt others exist.
"I think it should be mentioned that one of the high points of Geddy's career, and Neil's career...was the fact that they've both have been mentioned on Mystery Science Theater and I haven't because I'm a bum."- Alex Lifeson, "Rockline", January 24, 1994
"...MST3K, I mean, that's forever. I was a huge MST3K fan, by the way. I still have a bunch of them on tape. I have a friend in New York who turned me on to that show, because we weren't getting it up here in Canada. She would send me these tapes and we'd watch them on the bus. They're just fantastic." - Geddy Lee, Sporting News, April 13, 2007
Go Jump in the Pool!, novel from the Macdonald Hall Series by Gordon Korman, 1991
2112 sighting: The two main characters join the stock market and at one point the person who holds the stocks for them mentions that they hold 2112 shares of the company.
Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge, video game, 1992
During the game, a group of pirates say that while they were stranded on a tiny desert island, they came across a philosopher who told them something that changed their lives: "all the world is a stage, and we are merely players." This may be a reference to "Limelight", which was in turn inspired by William Shakespeare's As You Like It.
Ultima VII: The Black Gate, video game, 1992
In the game, one of the books found in a library opens to show "'THE TRIO' by Leepeartson, Compiled from the music of three master bards, this full volume contains a collection of songs for a variety of stringed and percussion instruments."
"Rocket", music video by Smashing Pumpkins, July 1993
At the beginning of the video there is a close up of Billy Corgan's guitar on which a Rush sticker is clearly displayed. Corgan has always referred to Rush as a major influence and along with verbally giving thanks to Rush, performed a live, unplugged version of "Limelight" during a Smashing Pumpkins' concert in Toronto, Canada, in March 2000.
Warcraft, Orcs & Humans, real-time strategy computer game, January 15, 1994
In this first installment from the Warcraft universe, some of the cheat codes are lines from Rush songs. For example, for extra wood you type "Hatchet, axe, and saw", and for more gold type "glittering prizes."
Spider Man 2099 #19, by Marvel Comics, June 1994
2112 sighting: the character "Discord" tells Spider-man he has predicted the end of civilization in the year 2112.
Adolescents and Their Music: If It's Too Loud, You're Too Old, book by Scott A. Reid, Jonathon S. Epstein and D.E. Benson, 1994
Includes a chapter with a title inspired by Rush: "Living on a lighted Stage: Identity Salience, Psychological Centrality, and Role Behavior of Semi Professional Musicians". Published by Garland Publishing, New York.
Chrome Circle, novel by Mercedes Lackey, July 1, 1994
It is reported that this novel's main character, Tannim, comments on Rush's "Roll The Bones" and the importance of the lyrics. Rush is mentioned in other Lackey novels as well.
Airheads, August 5, 1994
During the scene where the band is raiding the radio station's CD archives, on the partition of one of the desks is a blue Rush Hemispheres bumper sticker.
Beavis and Butt-head, animated television series, aired December 19, 1994
During the episode "Plastic Surgin'", Beavis & Butt-head go to a plastic surgeon to get "wiener implants". The episode includes Rush's "Stick It Out" video; when Beavis realizes its Rush, he starts singing "Invisible airwaves crackle with life, bright antenna bristle with the energy".
Microserfs, novel by Douglas Coupland, May 10, 1996
On page 12 of this novel about geeky computer programmers who are searching for real lives, "Michael" lists his "Jeopardy categories" (main interests) which includes "Neil Peart (drummer for Rush)." Later, on page 173, two characters discuss the difference between a "geek" and a "nerd.":
"Susan said that geeks were usually losers in high school who didn't have a life, and then not having a life became a status symbol. 'People like them never used to be rewarded by society. Now all the stuff that made people want to kick your butt at fifteen becomes fashionable when fused with cash. You can listen to Rush on the Ferrari stereo on your way to get a good seat at Il Fornaio - and wear Dockers doing it!'"
The Grave, 1996
In this film about two escaped prisoners searching for treasure supposedly found in the grave of a dead millionaire, the funeral director, played by Anthony Michael Hall, reportedly wears a 2112 t-shirt throughout the entire movie.
Brass Eye, British television series, 1996
A spoof documentary series where British Celebrities were fooled into endorsing false products. It is reported that during the original airing of the episode "Animal, the character Bernard Lehring ("a pompous Londoner who makes a living from fighting otters") pulls up to a nightclub with "The Spirit of Radio" emanating from his Jaguar's stereo. Writer Chris Morris reportedly often includes his favorite musicians in the credits of his programs, and Geddy Lee and Neil Peart have both appeared in the credits as cameramen, etc.
Love and Rockets, Book 15: Hernandez Satyricon, graphic novel, January 17, 1997
This graphic novel includes a rock band having a dispute, where the guitarist states "How can we expect to go somewhere when we have a drummer who won't keep the same beat twice because he wants to be some guy named Neil Peart...?"
Roseanne, television series
Midway through the episode "Roseanne-Feld" (aired March 4, 1997), when Mark and Jackie go outside of the wrestling arena to take a phone call, the words "I LOVE RUSH!" are written on the wall behind Jackie above the pay phone.
Orgazmo, September 6, 1997
Written and directed by South Park's Trey Parker, includes a scene where "Dave The Lighting Guy", played by South Park collaborator Matt Stone, takes a picture of the cast of a porno film. He says, "say Geddy Lee" to which one of the stars responds "Who's Geddy Lee?". He replies "Geddy Lee, best bass player, ever!" (Click here for a video clip). On the DVD release, in the bonus features blooper reel there is an outtake of this same scene where Matt says "Okay, now everyone say, 'Neeeeil Peart'!" (pronounced 'Pert')...Neil Peart! Only the greatest drummer ever, duh."
"The Mother of All Machines", short story by Lee Borell, 1998
A short story in which the author expands the story told in "The Body Electric".
The Long Hard Road Out Of Hell, autobiography by Marilyn Manson and Neil Strauss, 1998
This book includes a photograph of a teenage Manson wearing a Rush shirt on page 34, along with a comment by Manson on listening to Moving Pictures on page 38.
Small Soldiers, July 10, 1998
"Tom Sawyer" is playing in the background during the scene where Christy, played Kirsten Dunst, is on the telephone with Alan, played by Gregory Smith (a Led Zeppelin poster is hanging on her wall). A remix of the song by DJ Z-Trip was included on the soundtrack album, and two separate remixes were included on a promo cd.
Free Enterprise, October 23, 1998
This film is about two dysfunctional Trekkies that meet their hero, William Shatner, who in reality is not the Captain Kirk of their childhood. The film contains a scene 27 minutes into the movie where the two main characters (one of whom is played by Eric McCormack of "Will and Grace") go to "Toys 'R Us" with their other two friends to buy action figures. While there, the other two friends have this conversation: "What did you think of 'Christian McBride?'" "Oh, I didn't listen to it yet." "Dude, you did the same thing when I gave you Tales From Topographic Oceans." "That's that Rush album that you lent me?" "Dude, it's Yes! Ughh!" Not exactly the most glowing reference, but there it is.
Mars 2112, restaurant, opened November 1998
Other than the obvious 2112 sighting, this future space travel themed restaurant in New York City bears no relationship to Rush.
SLC Punk, January 22, 1999
Near the end of this movie about punk rockers in Salt Lake City in 1985, a flashback scene shows the two main characters discussing Dungeons and Dragons as "The Trees" plays on the stereo. One character complains about the music, and the other defends them with "Rush is a very good band, their music is very complex, and...perfection! ...I like them, they rock!" The first character then changes the music to Generation X (Billy Idol).
American Movie: The Making of Northwestern, January 1999
A documentary film about the making of the independent short-horror film Coven, 1997, from which it is hoped would yield enough profit to finish another, full length independent feature film, Northwestern. 1:33 into the film, in a scene which was recorded in June, 1997, after spending three years to create his 39 minute short film Mark Borchardt asks his stoner friend Mike Schank "Would you buy this movie for $14.95?". Mike answers "Yeah, hell yeah, man...course man, shit that's what Rush tickets were." In a scene five minutes later, Mike is seen wearing the tie-died Test for Echo tour t-shirt. This is an actual documentary film which takes place in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, from which we can assume he had just seen the June 13 concert at the Marcus Amphitheater. Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
EDtv, March 26, 1999
Ed, played by Matthew McConaughey, wears a 2112 starman t-shirt under his unzipped gray sweat-shirt in the scene where he visits the hospital.
ReBoot, computer animated television series, aired May 6, 1999
During episode 39, "End Prog", a "binome" character appears dressed wearing clothes and a hairdoo very similar to the woman on the Permanent Waves album cover, and pulls the curtain back to allow the camera in as on the cover of Exit...stage Left.
Prayers For Rain, novel by Dennis Lehane, June 2, 1999
At the bottom of page 61 of the hardcover edition, as the character Patrick Kenzie is narrating, he tells us, "I think Warhol is to art what Rush is to rock music, which is to say, I think he sucks." Not a glowing endorsement for the band, but a Rush reference all the same.
Magnolia, December 8, 1999
On the DVD version, in the special features, there is a "Frank T.J. Mackey Infomercial", with a scene of Frank, played by Tom Cruise, calling a girl (Janet). Hanging on the wall of his apartment is a HUGE Chronicles poster.
No Salutes For Your Surrender, novel by Antanas, 1999
With a title inspired from "The Pass", it also includes an acknowledgement to Neil Peart:
"An Analog Kid listened to your Mystic Rhythms and heard the idealism that had him sooner become a Digital Man. That man now writes his own Middletown Dreams into Moving Pictures always on the hope that they might, as did so many of yours, incite Permanent Waves of integrity in another. Thank you."
Star Trek Starship Creator, video game, 1999
This computer game reportedly has starships named "USS Syrinx" and "USS Lamneth". In addition, in the crew roster bios, included under the hobbies and interests of Commander Kyle is "Works of early 21st century Canadian poet Neil Peart."
Freaks and Geeks, television series, September 25, 1999 - July 8, 2000
Set during the 1980-1981 school year, this television series had many Rush references, music samples, and characters wearing t-shirts during its 21 episode run. Not surprising, the Freaks And Geeks: Original Soundtrack And Score includes "The Spirit of Radio".
Avalon, online comic strip, November 8, 1999-
This comic has referenced Rush on more than one occasion, one of which included Geddy Lee during the segment "Live with Regis and Geddy Lee", which appeared on January 24, 2000.
Front Mission 3, video game, February 29, 2000
2112 sighting: this mech battle strategy game is set in Japan in the year 2112.
Primus, Tour T-Shirt, February-April 2000
Known to be Rush fans, for their 2000 Antipop tour, Primus sold a concert t-shirt with artwork similar to the 2112 cover. For more on Primus, click here.
Backyard Baseball 2001, video game, March 15, 2000
After clicking a few times on Randy Johnson in the "Cards" section of the game, Randy, who is known to be a Rush fan, says "If baseball doesn't work out I'm going to play drums in a rock band like Neil Peart (mispronounced as Pert) from Rush." [Also, see below entry for Backyard Baseball 2003].
High Fidelity, March 17, 2000
During the first scene in the record store (8 minutes into the movie), Barry, played by Jack Black, arrives late for work singing the instrumental section of "Jacob's Ladder". The films credits confirm this by giving credit to Neil Peart, Gary Weinrib, and Alex Zivojinovich.
South Park, animated television series
"I remember buying their cassettes, tearing home on my BMX, running inside and throwing them into my Walkman, and sitting down to my drum set and just destroying my mom's afternoon. Rush was definitely the first band I ever loved." - Matt Stone, Ottawa Citizen, May 7, 2012
December Dawn, novel by Kyle Vernon, 2000
An ebook with many familiar Rush themes, the protagonist is not only a Rush fan, he has a Signals poster hung in his living room. The book contains numerous direct and indirect references to Rush, including a mention of most of the Rush albums.
Planet Reverb, album by Jetpack, May 5, 2000
Perhaps one of the most subtle yet humorous Rush tributes ever, in the linernotes photos by surf duo Jetpack, guitarist Dan Standiford is striking the same pose as Alex Lifeson in the Permanent Waves album art, right down to the guitar, shipping crates and coffee cup! The credits of include the statement "Apologies: Alex Lifeson and Stewart Copeland-we stole your poses!" (as the drummer posed like Copeland).
The Onion, satirical newspaper
People Get Ready, album by Mooney Suzuki, September 5, 2000
This album's back cover artwork contains a variety of seemingly random and misspelled words interspersed between the tracklist and credits, including the phrase "snow dog is victoious".
2001 Nissan Maxima Television Commercial, Fall 2000
The first two measures of "Tom Sawyer" (repeating once) served as background music for a 20th Anniversary Nissan Maxima television commercial.
"Yes, this was approved by both the band and Anthem. We really don't have a problem with it as it was tastefully done. In this day and age where there's no real rock radio left and video TV only plays pop music, we are trying other directions to get the music out there. I know the whole 'corporate sell out' lines. I just don't think they're applicable any longer." - Anthem Records, October 17, 2000.
"We've never had a policy that's precluded that possibility and we've been offered situations in the past that we didn't feel were interesting or monetarily viable so we never had a hard rule about it and it seems it's such a common thing right now and over the last few years we've been offered so many things! So we just try to pick the best situations for ourselves." - Geddy Lee, Barnesandnoble.com chat, November 13, 2000
Strange Frequency, VH-1 Original Movie, January 24, 2001
From VH-1's "Movies That Rock", this movie is a four part anthology of the VH-1 "Twilight Zone-esque" series of the same name. In the opening segment, "Disco Inferno", Buck (Erik Palladino) and Randy (Danny Masterson) are in a car accident and go to metalhead hell: a disco. Buck survives after being revived by the song in his walkman: "Tom Sawyer".
Fargo Rock City, April 28, 2001
At one point during
Written Works Of Chuck Klosterman
Wilson Quarterly, Summer 2001 issue
Speaking of Pop Culture, the Power Windows album cover is used on the front cover of this issue of the quarterly publication for the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in a cover story titled "Pop Culture: Only a Wasteland?". "Paul Cantor suggests that, like the ancient Greeks, Americans know themselves through their popular culture...". Other than the cover image, no other references to Rush were included in the article.
Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back, August 24, 2001
At the end of the scene in the comic book store, Jason Mewes and Jason Lee 'sing' part of "La Villa Strangiato" (or possibly Raymond Scott's "Powerhouse", the song which inspired this same section of "La Villa Strangiato").
UltraPlayer version 2.112, media player software, 2001
When not playing a file, this player displays the text "UltraPlayer 2112...Attention all planets of the Solar Federation....We have assumed control...We have assumed control".
Banzai, British television series, 2001
"Amber", music video by 311, 2001
In the video, drummer Chad Sexton wears a Signals concert t-shirt.
Rockin' The Suburbs, music video by Ben Folds, 2001
Ben Folds wears a white 2112 shirt in one of the shots of this video directed by "Weird Al" Yankovic. Ben Folds previously gave thanks to Geddy Lee in the linernotes Ben Folds Five album The Unauthorized Biography Of Reinhold Messner.
Impostor, January 4, 2002
2112 sighting: in a scene 27 minutes into this sci-fi movie which takes place in the year 2079, Spence Olham, played by Gary Sinise, calls his wife Maya, played by Madeline Stowe, on his video phone. In her message, she says "...please leave a message. If this is a medical emergency enter code twenty-one-twelve..."
The Simpsons, animated television series
Backyard Baseball 2003, video game, March 15, 2002
In the "Cards" section of the game is a card for Major League pitcher/Rush fan Randy Johnson, which says "Hobbies include photography, playing the drums, and listening to 'RUSH' albums." [Also, see above entry for Backyard Baseball 2001].
The Red Star Series, novels by Dennis J. Barton, 2002-2004
"Inspired by the works of Rush, Red Star is sure to thrill hard-core Rush fans and sci-fi addicts alike." Although not endorsed by Rush, the series blends the stories and ideas put forth in "2112", "Red Barchetta" and other songs with similar themes.
Trudeau, Canadian television miniseries, March 31, 2002
It is reported that a clip from "The Spirit of Radio" is heard during the scene where Trudeau, played by Colm Feore, wins his final election.
Gore, video game, April 24, 2002
The head map designer for this first person shooter PC game designed most of his work to the music of Rush (I know, because he told me!), including two game maps called "UMC Anthem" and "Stepps of Cygnus".
Gilmore Girls, television series
"Sure enough, when I get to the production office to rehearse the song we perform in the episode, there in the flesh is Mr. Geddy Lee & his beautiful daughter Kyla! Turns out Kyla has impeccable taste & never misses an episode of her favorite show, 'The Gilmore girls', right beside Dad who watches every one with her! Geddy told us that he was in LA listening to mixes of the new Rush CD, & set up a tour of the WB lot with Kyla, who had a great time meeting the cast & watching us work. I said to Geddy 'Well, hey ..... why don't you guys BE IN THE SHOW???'" - Sebastian Bach, (singer and Gilmore Girls regular for those not familar with the show), MySpace blog, March 8, 2007
Need for Speed - Hot Pursuit 2, video game, July 9, 2002
Two versions of "One Little Victory" play randomly during the game, both the original Vapor Trails track and an instrumental edit.
Bubba Ho-Tep, June 9, 2002
A small Rush sighting from another fan with a quick eye! On the DVD release during the "Making Of" documentary, there is a quick scene showing fans lined up to see the film at the Toronto Film Festival (September 7, 2002), with a glimpse of a placard that reads "Line for Rush tickets only" (during the Vapor Trails tour).
"Making Arrows Out of Pointed Words": Critical Reception, Taste Publics, and Rush by Christopher J. McDonald, published in the Journal Of American Culture, Vol. 25 Issue 3-4, September 2002
The author of this essay later published Rush, Rock Music, and the Middle Class: Dreaming in Middletown in 2009.
The Matrix and Philosophy, September 27, 2002
One of the chapters in this book discusses freewill, and fittingly opens with the chorus to the Rush song.
Mr. Birch, online comic strip, October 2002
This online comic strip featured a Rush related storyline when Rush visited Rochester, N.Y., during the Vapor Trails tour.
The Rules of Attraction, October 11, 2002
2112 sighting: Sean Bateman, played by James Van Der Beek, receives love notes in a mailbox with number 2112.
Sealab 2021, animated television series, aired November 3, 2002
"The Policy" (ep. 15, season 2, aired November 3, 2002). One of the characters marvels at another's new jukebox, marveling "Check it out, every Rush album ever!". The captain replies "Yeah, Caress of Steel!, it's an import." Click here for a video clip.
Hemispheres, 35mm short film, November 2002
Inspired by the Rush album of the same name, the basis of the film is the struggle and battle of the left and right side of one's brain - the left being logic and the right being emotion. In the film, the characters on the Hemispheres album cover come to life to represent these two halves. As an added plus for Rush fans, the film makers included at least one visual reference from ever Rush album at that time (through Vapor Trails). For additional information including production stills, a complete synopsis, and how to order, visit TheSouth40.com.
Sonny, December 29, 2002
Set in 1981, during a scene 26 minutes into the film, "Limelight" plays as Sonny leaves his home and drives to his new life.
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, 2002
During the music loop for the in-game radio station "VROCK", shortly after Iron Maiden's "Two Minutes To Midnight" is heard, the DJ takes a call from someone named "Snowdog". In addition, for the "Publicity Tour" mission, according to the official video game strategy guide written by Tim Bogenn, a limo carrying the fictitious band "Love Fist" is rigged with a bomb, and that the drummer is the smartest member of the band and "it takes the professor on the drum kit approximately 2 minutes and 20 seconds to defuse the bomb."
Star Trek Enterprise, television series, aired February 12, 2003
2112 sighting: during episode 41, "Cease Fire", Captain Jonathan Archer is called in to mediate an ongoing border dispute between Vulcans and Andorians, when he mentions "the border incursion of twenty-one-twelve". In addition, it is established in other episodes that Captain Archer was also born in 2112.
Hittin' the Note, album by Allman Brothers Band, March 18, 2003
Not exactly a tribute... Graphic artist Hugh Syme reused Dimo Safari's photo of the crowd from Different Stages in the Hittin' the Note album artwork. The image of the crowd viewing a gigantic tinkertoy was reimaged, with the tinkertoy replaced by giant mushrooms. This is not the first time that Rush album art was recycled by another artist; in 1978 a photo of a Rush crowd was reused in Rainbow's Long Live Rock 'N Roll gatefold art (see entry above). In both cases, the usage of the images was done without the knowledge of SRO/Anthem. Unlike the Rainbow usage, however, where Polydor retouched a mockup that they had originally rejected from Fin Costello, Hugh Syme was the graphic artist for both Different Stages and Hittin' The Note.
Music in High Places (Live In Alaska), music video by the Goo Goo Dolls, released March 18, 2003
During the performance of "Big Machine", one of the guitarists is wearing a red Hold Your Fire t-shirt.
"I was a bit nervous up there. I mean, it's dark, and I can't see, and I'm stepping over cables and stuff...Alex is a big fan of the show...Alex came to us and asked to do a cameo. The director was like, 'No, but why don't we write a whole episode based around you?' And he was totally into that. So we flew him out to Halifax and we shot with him for three days and had really great times. He's a really amazing person." - Mike Smith ("Bubbles"), TorontoStar.com, October 28, 2002
King Of The Hill, animated television series, aired May 18th, 2003
Bobby finds new friends who believe in witchcraft and "The Trees" is heard [webmaster note: what "The Trees" has to do with witchcraft is beyond me!].
Odd Shoes, novel by Alan Redman, June 2003
A "true biography of a fictional character", the protagonist of this book is a Rush fan and references are sprinkled throughout.
Voltage, music video by Mexican band Fancy Free, ~2003
Seen on a Mexican video channel called Telehit, during the video one of the band members is seen wearing a black 2112 Starman t-shirt.
Lara Croft Tomb Raider - The Cradle of Life, July 25, 2003
2112 sighting: when Lara (played by Angelina Jolie) travels to Hong Kong, during a shot of city traffic a large "2112-8888" is seen on the back of a bus.
Train 48, Canadian television series, 2003-2005
Taking place on a Toronto "Go Train" with 10 commuters riding home to Burlington, Rush was the favorite band of the character named "Johnny". Loosely scripted and filmed the day it aired, the actors improvised all the dialogue often including current events (such as Rush performing at the SARS benefit concert). The series had at least three Rush references, original air dates or episode names are unknown:
Reno-911, television series, aired September 10th, 2003
A spoof of "Cops", this is a faux-reality series which airs on Comedy Central. During the episode, while making a presentation to a high school class, Lt. Dangle plays a silly song on his guitar about the dangers of crystal meth. After he finishes, he asks if there are any questions, but simply gets blank stares from the students. As they have about 45 minutes left, he asks if there are any requests and says "I can play some Rush".
School Of Rock, October 3rd, 2003
During the scene where Jack Black's character gives the students music cd's for inspiration, he gives the drummer "Rush, 2112. Neil Peart [pronounced Pert], one of the great drummers of all time, study up." A later scene shows a close-up of a chalkboard displaying a "family tree" of rock, with RUSH listed under "Prog Rock". On the DVD release, there is an interactive feature of this same chalkboard titled "Dewey Finn's Chalkboard of Rock", with short biographies of each of the bands listed (and the Rush's bio has Lifeson's true last name misspelled as Zivojinowich and is written as if the band disbanded in the 90's!).
"At last, after seeing that movie, my kid thinks her dad rocks." - Geddy Lee, Q Classic Prog Rock Special Edition, July 15, 2005
"Shaking his hand, I...told him how pleased I had been by the reference in School of Rock. Jack said, 'That was my idea!' I also mentioned how we had originally wanted him to play the part of the 'awakening dreamer' in our opening film, the part Jerry Stiller had ended up doing ('What did they put in my tea?'). At the time, we had been told by Jack's people that he wasn't available, but typically, he had never even heard about it." - Neil Peart, Roadshow
El Caminos In The West, music video by Grandaddy, 2003
Found on the DVD "Sumday - The Videos", in this video where the band is replaced by young girls who tour in their stead, one of the characters is wearing a black 2112 starman shirt.
Duck Dodgers, animated television series
This series starring Daffy Duck, part of The Looney Tunes Show airing every Saturday at 11:30 AM on Cartoon Network (in Canada, it airs weekends at 8:30 AM and Sunday nights at 7:30 PM), has had two Rush references:
Aqua Teen Hunger Force, animated television series
Part of Cartoon Network's Adult Swim lineup, which has frequently referenced Rush in various animated series.
"Rush fans? Yes! Yeah, in a big way!...Yeah, we love them!...We tried getting Geddy on the show. But he had 'other obligations.'" - Aqua Teen Hunger Force creators Dave Willis and Matt Maiellaro, Readmag.com, issue #24
Chilly Beach, Canadian animated television series, aired November 5, 2003
"Dale" refers to his "To Do" list which includes "Play Guitar for Rush" (as well as "Win The Stanley Cup").
24, television series
Flash: "I hear Neil Peart's new book's really good too - and you don't have to be a Rush fan to enjoy it."
Green Lantern: "Why am I not surprised you listen to a band called 'Rush'?"
Flash: "A buddy of mine calls their music 'math rock' because of all the odd time signatures - but when you're the fastest man alive - basic 4/4 rhythm is pretty tedious."
"As the author of GREEN LANTERN #170, and a diehard Rush fan for the past 23 years, I was more than psyched to see that scene between Green Lantern & the Flash make your list of pop culture references! Thanks for including it! Stay tuned for more Rush references in the future...Great job on your website, by the way! Keep it up! Best, Ben Raab. www.benraab.com" - September 13, 2004
Transworld Skateboarding Magazine, Volume 21, Number 12, December 2003
As an acknowledgement that this was issue 21-12 of the popular skateboard magazine, the issue included Rush's starman on the spine of the magazine.
Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law, animated television series, December 30, 2000-
Part of Cartoon Network's Adult Swim lineup, which has frequently referenced Rush in various animated series.
Cider With Roadies, autobiography by Stuart Maconie, Feb 5, 2004
This autobiography by BBC Radio 2 DJ and TV face contains many references to Rush, including making love to his girlfriend to 2112. It is reportedly quite an interesting read with regard to the state of music journalism and music in general in the UK during the 70s and 80s.
The Canadian Army Official Website, February 2004
"One Little Victory" is heard on the website. Visit http://www.army.dnd.ca and wait for the flash presentation to load.
Reefer Madness, Special Addiction, April 20, 2004
An anti-pot propaganda film originally released in 1938, this film was colorized and reissued in 2004 with an audio commentary by Mike Nelson of Mystery Science Theater 3000. During a scene where one of the young pot heads is talking to the principal in his office, Nelson says in the commentary, "You know, I could have gotten away with so much more in highschool if I thought to wear the tweed jackets and the sweater vests and the bow ties, you know, maybe slick my hair back. It was my feathered hair and RUSH t-shirts that pegged me as a trouble maker."
WWE Summerslam 2004, aired August 15, 2004
"Summertime Blues" from Feedback was the official song for this pay-per-view event. Besides being played as background music during the event, the song was also used during commercials promoting the event (which also promoted the Feedback release).
The Weapon, novel by Michael Z. Williamson, August 2004
Most of Rush fan Michael Z. Williamson's books include Rush references, including this one which took its title directly from the song.
Beck, sticker on guitar, August 16, 2004
From Beck's website added August 16, 2004, in a publicity photo taken while in the recording studio, a Rush decal is plainly seen on Beck Hansen's guitar.
Phil The Alien, September 11, 2004
"Tom Sawyer" is heard in this Canadian comedy film about an alien who crashes to Earth and find himself alone in the wilds of northern Canada. The song is heard while the clueless alien wanders around in the woods; the individual band members as well as SRO are thanked during the credits. Note, non-Canadian releases do not include "Tom Sawyer", as the rights were only secured for Canada.
Feels Like Today, album by Rascal Flatts, September 28, 2004
The guitarist from the crossover country band is wearing a Signals t-shirt in the photo on the inside sleeve of the album artwork.
Second Hand Stories, television series, aired October 14, 2004
During the pilot episode of this PBS series, the hosts visit "Joe's Used Record Store" in Baltimore, thumb through the albums, and one pulls out a plastic wrapped copy of 2112.
"Sweet Miracle", fan produced video, October 2004
"A fan made music video for 'Sweet Miracle' off the 2002 album Vapor Trails by the Canadian Prog Rock band, RUSH. Influenced by pgs 338-339 of Neil Peart's book, Ghost Rider". - myspace.com/kimberlys_nyc
World Of Warcraft, massively multiplayer online game, November 22, 2004
"Sugarcube", music video by Yo La Tengo, December 2004
This video has a theme similar to the film School of Rock (see entry above), where the band must learn to be rock stars. At 2:00 into the video, the teacher reads the lyrics to "Closer To The Heart" while holding the A Farewell To Kings vinyl album cover.
Sally Forth, comic strip, January 10, 2005
When Sally says she saw someone at the store whose name "starts with an 'R' and ends with an 'H'", her husband responds "You saw the rock group 'RUSH' at Target?"
The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction, video game, February 7, 2005
The first story mission of this video game is "The Enemy Within", which one might pass off as coincidentally sharing the name of a Rush song, until learning that the first password earned during the game is "OCANADA".
It's The Whiskey Talking, DVD by comedian Artie Lange, February 8, 2005
About ten minutes into this DVD by comedian Artie Lange (known as part of Howard Stern's radio show), in describing his attire, he remarks "I'm wearing the same jacket I wore to a Rush concert in 1981."
House, television series
Numb3rs, television series
Ghost In The Shell, animated series, March 6, 2004
During the episode "Inductance" (#31), original air date March 6, 2004, one of the characters makes a list essays and reportedly includes "'A Farewell To Kings' by Neil Peart".
OverCompensating, online comic strip, March 8, 2005
The lead character writes a song about hacking to the tune of "Tom Sawyer".
Red Sector 2112, video game, March 15, 2005
With a title taken from two Rush songs, this video game for the Pocket PC appears to be very similar to Doom. It of course takes place in the year 2112...
Cheap Seats, television series
This comedic parody show, broadcast on ESPN's Classic Sports, features two twin brothers, Randy and Jason, who comment on old and crazy sporting events such as "Wide World of Sports", rodeo, spelling bee, skeet shooting, outdoor games, celebrity events, etc.
According To Jim, television series, aired March 29, 2005
At the opening of the show, Jim and his blues band are in the garage practicing and Jim's brother-in-law, Andy, does a few extra slides down the keyboard to end the song Jerry Lee Lewis style. Jim looks at him and says, "Well, that blew" to which Andy replies, "Yeah, like we're going to open for Rush!"
Speed - The Ride, promotional video, May 2005
Visit americancoasters.com to watch the Quicktime video for "Speed - The Ride", a roller coaster at the Sahara Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. Rush's "Driven" serves as the video's soundtrack.
Out Of The Gene Pool, comic strip
Pray For Us Sinners, novel by Kathryn Lively, June 2005
The protagonist of this murder mystery is a Rush fan, and a few Rush references are dropped throughout the book.
Dying to Live, skateboarding video, 2005
During this one hour skateboarding video starring Zero Skateboards' team Zero, skater Jamie Thomas skates to "The Temples Of Syrinx".
YYZ, fan created computer animated fan video by Bobby Standridge, first appeared ~ July 2005
This fan created video was a Rush-internet sensation in July 2005. Bobby would later create the official video for "Malignant Narcissism".
Playboy Studio West, 2112 Broadway, Santa Monica
2112 sighting: "Playboy Studio West" is located at 2112 Broadway Avenue in Santa Monica, California. Its exterior with its highly visible street number, 2112, were frequently shown in episodes of the E! Reality television series The Girls Next Door (debuted August 7, 2005) throughout its run. It is one of Playboy's key studio facilities for Playboy photographers to shoot centerfolds and playmate pictorials. Many models had their test nude shoots taken at this facility prior to being considered for a playmate pictorial in Playboy.
The Posies, 1986 - present
This photo of Posies guitarist Ken Stringfellow taken in 2005 shows the band's name printed on the bass drum with the identical pink and black logo style used by Rush on their debut album.
Doom RPG, mobile phone game, September 2005
2112 sighting: at one point in the game a civilian in Junction 4 says "Welcome! This is the oldest part of the base. Built in 2112..."
Terry, television movie, September 11, 2005
"Limelight" in heard in the soundtrack to this film on Terry Fox's unprecendented cross-Canada marathon in April 1980 on an artificial leg for cancer research.
Supernatural, television series
Squidbillies, animated television series, aired October 16, 2005
Part of Cartoon Network's Adult Swim lineup, which along with Sealab 2021, Aqua Teen Hunger Force and Harvey Birdman: Attorney At Law have all referenced Rush. During the Squidbillies pilot, "This Show Is Called Squidbillies, the main character starts hallucinating and says "I'm in that band, Rush," as a slightly off tempo version of "Tom Sawyer" is heard in the background. He has a flashback where he is onstage jamming out with Rush, and we see the squid on stage with two guys who are only seen from the chest down. In the end, however, he recalls it never really happened.
Batman Begins, October 18, 2005
In the special features of the deluxe edition DVD, during some of the interviews actor Christian Bale (Batman/Bruce Wayne) is seen a black Rush starman t-shirt (it takes a quick eye to notice, only the very top of the star is seen!).
Kenny vs. Spenny, Canadian comedy reality TV series, aired December 12, 2005
2112 sighting: during the episode "Who Can Sell More Bibles?" (episode 11, season 2), as Kenny is seen reciting mock Bible excerpts, a caption credits the verse to as the Book of Jean-Luc Picard 21:12.
Slowpoke, online comic strip, February 27, 2006
Includes an eggplant that looks like Geddy Lee.
Supergroup, VH-1 reality television show, Spring/Summer 2006
A pseudo-reality show "with the premise being to lock several musicians in a house for 10 days and get them to write and record some new original music", stars included Scott Ian (Anthrax; guitar), Ted Nugent (guitar), Evan Seinfeld (Biohazard; bass), Sebastian Bach (ex-Skid Row; vocals) and Jason Bonham (Bonham, UFO, Foreigner; drums). During episode 103, lead singer Sebastian Bach is seen wearing a Moving Pictures t-shirt; later, during episode 105, he is seen wearing 2112 boxers. Sebastian Bach previously recorded "What Your Doing" with his band Skid Row, and also performed on two Rush tribute albums: Working Man and Subdivisions.
Just Listen, novel by Sarah Dessen, April 6, 2006
On page on 151, the main character, Annabel is listening to a CD in the car. The text reads "The CD was still going, now playing a song by Rush as a minivan drove past us, kicking up some leaves."
Bang Cartoon, online cartoon, June 19, 2006
In an online cartoon which makes light of one time NFL great Ricky Williams' signing with the Toronto Argonauts (where Marijuana is legal), a caricature of Geddy Lee makes a plea for more US football talent.
PvPonline, online comic strip, June 30, 2006
In this online comic strip, a 2112 poster is seen on the wall behind the artist, Scott Kurtz.
Saxondale, British television series
Comedian/actor Steve Coogan plays Tommy Saxondale, an ex-roadie who now runs a pest control business.
Alice I Think, Canadian television series, aired July 28, 2006
During the episode "Pit Stop" which first aired on The Comedy Channel, July 28th, 2006, Diane, Alice's mother, invites her friend Geraldine and her daughter to stay with them after a house fire. Geraldine upsets John, Alice's father, when she accidentally spills her drink on his favorite Rush shirt. When he confronts her about it, she replies that she has a case of the same shirts at home because she used to date a Rush Roadie. After this bit of information, he decides he likes her again, and they eventually get drunk together. When his wife walks in, John plays a riff on his guitar and says, "Honey, Geraldine told me Alex Lifeson showed her this, well actually his roadie." Later, Geraldine begins telling a story about "this one time on the tour bus, Geddy grabs his guitar and..." but stops as Diane is obviously unimpressed that her friend is getting hammered with her husband. In a later scene, even more drunk, John and Geraldine begin a poor rendition of "Subdivisions" accompanied by an even worse performance on the guitar.
Scoop, July 30, 2006
2112 sighting: in this Woody Allen film, the combination to one of the character's wine cellar is "16 2112".
Dead Rising, video game, August 8, 2006
During the Xbox 360 game, while fighting with prisoners on the jeep in the leisure park, the song "Gone Guru" by the rap band Lifeseeker plays. From their self titled debut album, the song includes a sample of the main guitar riff from "A Passage to Bangkok"; click here for a sample; the Bangkok riff begins at 1:07.
Beer League, September 15, 2006
Artie, 37, who lives at home with his mom, brings a girl back to his bedroom. She is concerned that the walls are too thin, and that Artie's mom will hear. Artie says "These walls are completely sound proof...you could play drums in here! You could do the solo from 'Tom Sawyer'!" The girl replies "Who's Tom Sawyer?".
Trailer Park Boys: The Big Dirty, October 6, 2006
The TPB's scheme to rob a change machine, named the "Quiznoid 2112", from inside the local theater, whose marquee lists "Bastille Day", "The Temples of Syrinx", "Cygnus X1", "Red Barchetta", "La Villa Strangiato", "The Trees" & "Return of the Prince" among the films now showing (the other films are titles of songs by The Tragically Hip). The movie also includes a cameo by Alex Lifeson in the role of a policeman (with Gord Downie of The Tragically Hip as his partner), and of course it also includes the obligatory Rush t-shirt. Click here for details regarding the soundtrack.
Heroes, television series, October 23, 2006
Fly By Night sighting: Possibly coincidental, as the phrase certainly was not invented by Rush, but still worth a mention: during the episode titled "Hiros", the name of the dinner outside Las Vegas where time-traveling Hiro Nakamura first witnesses Nathan Petrelli fly out of the sky is the "Fly By Night". Perhaps there is a Rush fan in the production crew...?
Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Double Agent, video game, October 24, 2006
2112 sighting: at two points during the video game, access codes are given as 2112. One of them are found when you interrogate a crew member on a cruise ship and he gives the access code to the navigation room as "2112". The location of the second code is apparently found during the eight mission, "JBA, Headquarters 3".
Written Works Of David Mack
Once Upon A Lifetime, book by Vincent M. Jeffries, November 3, 2006
The author references Rush frequently in this book about divorce, family and friendship.
"This instrumental track, originally released in 1981, is one of the most difficult songs to play in 'Guitar Hero' and now 'Rock Band,' so it's become a sort of a geek milestone..." CNET.com, "The top 10 songs the Web brought back" (YYZ is #5), July 27, 2009
Tenacious D Rush Star Merchandise, Fall 2006
Items available via the official Tenacious D website include a t-shirt, keychain and magnet with their take on the Rush Star. Singer & backup guitarist Jack Black was Rush's original choice to act in the opening film of the R30 Tour, a part which Jerry Stiller ended up doing. Black is a longtime Rush fan, and can be seen 'singing' the music of "Jacob's Ladder" in the film High Fidelity, calling Peart "one of the great drummers of all time" in School of Rock, and even did his laundry on stage during one show of the R30 Tour. Note, while Rush's star has been mistakenly called a pentagram, well...
Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip, television series, aired November 13, 2006
During the episode "Nevada Day Part 2" (#108), a Neil Peart poster for Paragon Cymbals is seen hanging on the door of "Dillon's" dressing room.
Family Guy, animated television series
White Noise 2: The Light, January 5, 2007
Midway through this film about a man who sees a light emanating from those about to die, Katee Sackhoff's character tells how her deceased husband was an elementary school music teacher who organized a recital each year and "had the kids singing Bowie, Pink Floyd, Rush, The Beach Boys, a little Janes Addiction, you name it." A later scene takes place at one of those recitals where the elementary school choir is singing "The Spirit of Radio". The song was performed by the Vancouver Bach Children's Chorus.
The Knights Of Prosperity, television series, aired January 17, 2007
During the opening scene of the episode "Operation: Fighting Shape", the leader of the group chooses "Tom Sawyer" as their theme song, then begins to sing Tom Sawyer along with a karaoke machine as the other members join in (click here for a video clip). Twice later in the episode the Rush version is played as well.
Patriots: A Nation Under Fire, video game, January 23, 2007
A first person shooter PC game by the developers of Gore (see previous entry, released April 2002), in the very last building of the final mission, above a garage door in the dark is the word "Rush". This is a small homage to the band by the lead designer, a Rush fan!
Ghost Rider, February 16, 2007
Fitting as it shares the title of both the Rush song and Neil Peart' book, in on of the "making of" featurettes found on the DVD release, the visual effects director is seen wearing the tie-dyed Feedback tour shirt.
"Stuck Between Stations", music video by The Hold Steady, March 1, 2007
The drummer in this video from this Brooklyn-based alternative rock band is wearing a Rush Permanent Waves t-shirt.
The Enlightened Bracketologist - The Final Four of Everything, by Mark Reiter and Richard Sandomir, March 6, 2007
In this book "for determining what we really love or hate - and why", 32 studio songs of at least 10 minutes in length are listed under the topic of "Long Songs". On pages 55-56 "The Camera Eye" loses to Pink Floyd's "Echoes".
Joomla, open source content management system software, Spring 2007
The second software release for Joomla, software for building Content Rich Websites, was dubbed "the Red Barchetta".
"We've dubbed Beta-2 'Red Barchetta', in keeping with the spirit of freedom, power, simplicity and flexibility unknown in an Open Source framework. Besides Red Barchetta conjuring up triumph through coding revolution, this baby provides developers and designers with unequaled tools. This makes Joomla! 1.5 Beta-2 the ultimate enabler for your projects. Now is the time for you to take it for a serious drive to help our team refine the software for our release candidate goals." - Joomla.org
My Name Is Earl, television series, aired May 3, 2007
During the episode "Get A Real Job", airdate May 3, 2007, "Working Man" is heard when Earl gets a full time job on the loading dock of an appliance store and tries to get promoted into sales.
The Sopranos, television series, aired May 6, 2007
During episode #82, "Walk Like A Man", as Tony Soprano pulls into the driveway of his house, "Tom Sawyer" is playing on his car stereo.
Crossing Made Easy, television commercial, June 2007
A humorous video at CrossingMadeEasy.com promotes the ease of crossing the Canadian border as a car full of guys pick their favorite Canadian song. "Tom Sawyer" is of course one of the songs chosen, but the humor is found when another chooses Celine Dion. - CrossingMadeEasy.com
Semplice, computer software, 2007
In the "about" dialogue box for the "Semplice Storefront Manager" program, in fine print are the words "All Songs composed by Lee and Lifeson with lyrics by Peart". As there is no music in the software, this is apparently a small tribute by the program's authors.
Code Monkeys, television series, July 11, 2007 - August 17, 2008
"UFOs At The Zoo", music video by The Flaming Lips, August 21, 2007
During one of the fan features from the Oklahoma City Zoo, a fan is seen wearing a Rush A Farewell To Kings t-shirt. He first appears briefly 33 minutes into the film, then again 10 minutes later.
Boogeyman 2, January 8, 2008
One of the characters is a musician who has a Neil Peart Paragon poster on the wall in his room.
Frisky Dingo, animated television series, aired September 30, 2008
Part of Cartoon Network's Adult Swim lineup, which has frequently referenced Rush in various animated series. During the episode "The Middle", Neil Peart is referenced when a character makes a bad attempt at a vocalized drum fill.
The Sarah Silverman Program, television series, aired October 3, 2007
Airing on Comedy Central, during the episode "Bored of the Rings", after one of Sarah's gay and geeky friends played Dungeons & Dragons and missed a date, his boyfriend says something like "I made up a picnic basket and we were going to see the Rush concert tonight at the amphitheater!"
Everybody Hates Chris, television series, aired October 8, 2007
Late in the episode "Everybody Hates Caruso", "Tom Sawyer" begins to play when the bully Caruso begins to fight the Asian student, Yao, in the school corridor.
Guitar Hero 3, video game, October 28th, 2007
This third edition of the interactive guitar playing game does not include any Rush songs, but does include a couple of Rush references. One of the guitars that can be purchased in the game's store looks like a playing card and is called "Farewell To Kings" with the description "Its time to play your cards, but don't rush into it". Also, you can unlock a Gibson ES-355, which includes in its description "users of this guitar include Alex Lifeson of Rush..."
Barenaked Ladies, Talk To The Hand, concert video, November 7, 2007
BNL guitarist/singer Ed Robertson can be seen wearing a Rush t-shirt throughout this concert DVD. Pictured on the shirt is a photo of Rush circa '77. Robertson performed with Rush and Mike Smith of the Trailer Park Boys to record a special version of "Closer To The Heart" for the charity television telethon "Canada For Asia" in early 2005 (included on the bonus disk of Rush's R30 DVD). Known Rush fans, BNL have frequently performed "The Spirit of Radio" in their live show, and included short tributes to "Tom Sawyer" and "The Spirit of Radio" in their song "Grade 9" on the album Gordon, and drummer Tyler Stewart used a caricature of Rush's Star Man on his bass drum during their 2001 tour.
Rock Band, video game, November 20th, 2007
This interactive game allows players to perform lead guitar, bass, drums and vocals. A cover of "Tom Sawyer" is one of the original 26 songs included on the game disk, while "Limelight" and "Working Man" are available as a download purchase. After the initial release, on July 8th, 2008, the master track of "Closer To The Heart" and the "Working Man (Vault Edition)", were made available for download; on July 22 the "Working Man (Vault Edition)" was made available for download on iTunes. On September 23rd, 2008, the complete Moving Pictures master tracks were made available for download. These were the first "original versions" of "Tom Sawyer" and "Limelight" for the game, as the original Rock Band versions were covers. In addition, the Rock Band website posteda video interview where Geddy and Alex discuss the making of Moving Pictures. This was the second part of the previously posted video interview where they discuss finding the lost "Working Man 'alternate solo'" and the making of their debut album.
"The version features a never before heard guitar solo that Alex Lifeson did during the original recordings back in the 70's. The song was re-mixed by Rich Chycki who is known for his work on R30 and Snakes & Arrows. A great addition to the Rush song library!" - Rush.com, July 21, 2008
"With a lot of the rock guitar games that are available now...a whole new audience is coming around to knowing who we are. We're seeing a lot of young kids that have learned about Rush that way. So its very interesting to us to see all of these 11 - 14 year old budding guitar players coming to our shows." - Alex Lifeson, KZRR Albuquerque phone interview, April 8th, 2008
Hit List Countdown, Poland's "Polskie Radio Program 3", November 2007
A sample of "Where's My Thing?" is used as the main theme of this popular hit list countdown on Poland Radio 3.
Xavier: Renegade Angel, animated television series, aired December 9th, 2007
2112 sighting: part of Cartoon Network's Adult Swim lineup, which has frequently referenced Rush in various animated series. During the episode "World Of Hurt, BC", Xavier travels back in time to confront a cro-magnon wifebeater (by eating bacon and smoking to "take minutes off his life and thus go back in time"). To travel back to the future, he regurgitates the bacon but goes too far, to the year 2112.
Adventures Of Power, January 20, 2008
The story of one man's quest to win an "air-drumming" competition, this film holds a treasure trove of goodies. The film includes a flashback scene where young Power is inspired to become a drummer after hearing "Tom Sawyer" on the radio. In addition, adult Power's bedroom is plastered with Rush and Neil Peart posters, and during one of the more hilarious scenes onlookers criticize Power for daring to air drum Neil Peart "without a stool". The coup de grâce comes at the end of the film, when Neil Peart himself has a rare cameo as the judge of the final air drumming competition; he must judge the performance of the most difficult air drumming song ever: "Tom Sawyer". Click here for more info.
Cygnus X-1 Porter, Flat Earth Brewing Company
"This robust English style porter has an added twist, rye. Rye is used in making Canadian whiskey. It was created as a tribute to our favorite band - Rush. Cygnus X-1 has a creamy mocha chocolate flavor with a hint of spice. It has a slightly dry finish leaving you wanting more." - Flat Earth Brewing Company
Freedom, Japanese anime series, January 25th, 2008
By anime legend Katsuhiro Otomo (of "Akira" fame), during the first scene of volume 6, the main character is seen wearing a space suit with an Apollo 18 mission patch embroidered with the names "Lee, Lifeson, Peart". (There were 17 actaul Apollo missions).
The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters, documentary film, January 29, 2008
In this documentary which follows a pair diehard video game fans as they compete to break World Records on classic arcade games, one of the subjects performs Neil Peart's "The Rhythm Method" solo on the drums. For more, visit Reelzchannel.com.
Chad The Fat Kid, online comic strip, February 29, 2008
This online comic strip featured one of the characters wearing a Rush starman t-shirt.
The Grand, April 4, 2008
Early in this film, one of the characters explains that he prepares for poker tournaments by quoting from the mantra of the mentats in Frank Herbert's Dune. When he does this later in the film, another player asks, "is that Rush?"
Neil Peart - Mission: The Camera Eye, video game, April 2008
"New Year's Eve, 2111. The members of RUSH have defied natural science and willed themselves to live upwards of 160 years old, in anticipation of the year that their stellar '2112' album was named for. Everyone expects them to play 2112 in its entirety for Dick Clark's Rockin' Eve, but virtuoso drummer Neil Peart has a different plan. Hours before the show, Neil announces to bandmates Geddy and Alex that he wants to finally play their lost epic 'The Camera Eye,' as a show of thanks for the almost 200 years of support from their fans. Horrified, Geddy and Alex attempt to lock Neil backstage and teleport his giant drum set into the icy caves of Xanadu. Nevermore shall they return! Little do they know the evil plans of the Portnoybot 1000 will turn everything they all know upside down! Can Neil Peart escape his prison and travel to the icy caves of Xanadu to assemble his drum set again? Will he be able to do it in time for Dick Clark's Rockin' Eve show? Can he thwart the Portnoybot 1000 and save Geddy and Alex from his mad overplaying? Will 'The Camera Eye' ever be played live?"
Primeval: Shadow Of The Jaguar, novel by Steven Seville, May 13, 2008
Author Steven Seville, who wrote this Primeval spin-off novel, is obviously a Rush fan. The character Connor includes "2112" in his mp3 player's playlist (p43). Later, when the characters split up, they are told to tune their radios to channel 2112 (p106 and p206). And lastly, in the acknowledgments, the author states "Nothing can survive in a vacuum, and as the song goes, no-one can exist all alone."
HijiNKS Ensure: Geek Webcomic, online comic strip, May 28th, 2008
The music video game phenomenon was the subject of this online comic strip. Looking into the future, titled "Guitar Hero IV: The Inevitable Conclusion", the strip includes a drawing of a drum kit similar to that in Rock Band, only with many more accessories including tubular bells, a gong, etc., with the text "Guitar Hero V will have drums licensed by Neil Peart of Rush.".
The Cygnus X-1 by The Cygnus Model Rocket Company, released 2008
Possible Rush reference in that this model rocket company of course has a kit called the "X-1".
The Colbert Report, Comedy Central news show
Be Kind Rewind, June 17, 2008
On the DVD release of this film starring Jack Black, the star is seen giving an autograph to a man wearing a Rush t-shirt during the "Passaic Mosaic" special feature.
The Rocker, August 20, 2008
On the DVD release, during one of the deleted scenes Rainn Wilson goes to collect his drum kit from a self storage, and when he opens one of the cases, the drum has "Neil Peart is GOD" written across the top of it...In preperation for the role, Wilson saw Rush in rehearsals for the Snakes & Arrows tour and met Neil Peart:
"They're not really a hair metal band, but I got to see them on their warmup for their tour and got to meet Neil Peart, who probably is the greatest drummer of all time," Wilson said. "He let me sit behind his kit and play it. So I was initiated in the world of drumming." ... - Rainn Wilson, Toronto Sun, March 25, 2008
Rock Band 2, video game, September 15th, 2008
This interactive game allows players to perform lead guitar, bass, drums and vocals. Included in the track list is "The Trees" by Rush, another "vault edition", the audio is actually from the live promo video recorded in 1978.
Zeitgeist: Addendum, October 3, 2008
During the introduction to the third chapter to this the second installment of the conspiracy theory documentary movie series (released free online), the opening bass notes from "Cygnus X-1" are heard (beginning near the 54:20 mark).
Chuck, television series
The Border, Canadian television series, aired November 3, 2008
During "Prescriptive Measures" (season 2, episode 6), the resident computer nerd who works for a Canadian governmental agency celebrates after winning Geddy Lee's Rickenbacker bass from "Rush's first tour". He asks his co-workers if any of them want to hear him play "Working Man".
The Complete Master Works 2, by Tenacious D, November 4, 2008
When introducing the song "The Metal", before The Metal walks on stage, alluding to "The Spirit of Radio" Jack Black says, "I hear machinery, making modern music".
Certifiable - Live In Buenos Aires, concert video by The Police, November 18, 2008
In the "Better Than Therapy" special feature, drummer Stewart Copeland discusses his 'Big Gong' and says, "this one is bigger than the one Neil Peart (mispronounced 'Pert') uses".
What Just Happened?, November 28th, 2008
2112 sighting: late in the film, as Robert DeNiro's character is trying to catch a plane home from Cannes, the plane's ID number is CS2112F.
Time Immemorial, music video by Into Eternity, December 9, 2008
One of the guitarists in this video from this Canadian death metal band is wearing a Snakes & Arrows t-shirt.
"Oh Canada, get ready for some major prime-time ribbing and every hoser cliché imaginable when the popular American sitcom How I Met Your Mother unveils its ode to the Great White North. Alan Thicke, Geddy Lee, Jason Priestley, k.d. lang, Alex Trebek and Luc Robitaille are just part of the constellation of Canadian stars featured in the all-things-Canuck episode that airs Monday." The Star, Febraury 4, 2013
Rifftrax, online audio commentaries
Similar to Mystery Science Theater 3000, these are audio commentaries from the stars of the original MST3K, which can be played as you watch your own films.
Fanboys, February 6, 2009
"Limelight" and "Tom Sawyer" are heard in this comedy where "Star Wars" fans travel to George Lucas' Skywalker Ranch in 1998 to steal an early copy of "Episode I: The Phantom Menace". Throughout the film, actor Dan Fogler wears a retro Rush shirt circa 1974; in addition, his character keeps a cassette case containing only Rush tapes in his van. In one scene, Eric (Sam Huntington) opens the cassette case and says "What the hell Hutch, it's all Rush, what if we wanted a little variety?", to which Hutch (Dan Fogler) replies "Rush is variety, Bitch! Rule number one: in my van, its Rush! All Rush, all the time...no exceptions." (click here for a video clip)
"I love Rush. That was something Ernie Cline put in the original script and I think there is a great connection with the original trilogy and the music of Rush. An iconic band. So, yeah, I love Rush and Dungeons and Dragons, I always associate the two...Rush was in our script when it was floating around in 2005! I guess everyone thought Fanboys would never get made, so we'll use the Rush." - Kyle Newman, director, UGO.com, May 18, 2009
I Love You Man, March 20th, 2009
I Love You Man director and co-writer John Hamburg is a long time Rush fan, and used to play Rush covers in his band. When writing the script, he chose Rush as a bonding device for the lead characters played by co-stars Paul Rudd and Jason Segel (Rush fans may remember Segel from his role in the television series Freaks And Geeks, a series which frequently referenced Rush). Both Rudd and Segel are also Rush fans, and the film is full of Rush sightings, including a scene which takes place at a Rush concert with a cameo by the band. Additional Rush sightings include the multiple Rush posters adorning Segel's walls as he and Rudd jam to "Tom Sawyer" (with Rudd playing a Geddy Lee Signature Jazz Bass), Rudd exclaiming at the Rush concert "I haven't seen them live since the Signals tour!", and of course, Rudd and Segel jamming to "Limelight" at the end of the film at the wedding. This performance is included on the I Love You Man Soundtrack, along with the original Rush versions of both "Limelight" and "Tom Sawyer". A source close to the band reported the scene was filmed the week of May 11th, 2008, while the band was in L.A. during the second leg of the Snakes & Arrows tour. Check out this extended 4:13 clip of Rush performing "Limelight" for the film, which includes footage not found in the final release.
"When I met (the band) and I was explaining the scene to them, I was so hypersensitive that they would enjoy themselves and not feel as if we were making fun of them because we were not at all. So I was explaining it to them, like, 'Jason and I are dancing around and we're really, really excited, and Rashida [Jones], her character is weirded out by us but she's kind of bored because we're totally ignoring her. So that's what's going on in the scene. We're way into it and she's kind of bored.' And Geddy Lee said, 'So it's just like any one of our concerts.' (laughter)" - Paul Rudd, ComingSoon.net, March 19, 2009
"It was a blast, we just played the same song over and over again. It came at a tough time, because we were on tour and that was our day off. It was nice that it was such fun, because we were pretty beat." - Geddy Lee, Entertainment Weekly, March 20, 2009
Adventureland, April 3, 2009
By the director of Superbad and starring Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart, this film includes a scene where one of the characters airdrums and sings "Limelight" (until he forgets the lyrics). While the song was heard in the trailer, it is not played during the film (although the band is listed in the film's credits).
K-On!, Japanese animated series, aired April 9, 2009
During the second episode of season two of the Japanese anime series K-On! which aired April 9th, 2009, when one of the characters goes to the music store to buy a Les Paul guitar, a Pearl drums banner on the wall has been reworked to read "Peart, the best reason to play drums".
Rock Band Classic Rock Track Pack, add on bundle for Rock Band, May 19, 2009
This 20 song pack includes the original versions of "Closer To The Heart" and "Red Barchetta".
Rock Band Unplugged, PSP video game, June 9, 2009
This video game made specifically for the portable Sony PSP gaming system includes "The Trees", specifically, the "vault edition" which was previously released with Rock Band 2.
Guitar Hero Smash Hits, video game, June 16, 2009
Rush's "YYZ" is one of 48 songs compiled from previous Guitar Hero releases, yet unlike the version originally released on Guitar Hero 2, this is the master recording and includes play from all instruments.
Pepsi Rock Band, television commercial, June 2009
"Limelight" was used as the background music for this television commercial promoting Pepsi Rock Band, a contest where your could upload your very own Rock Band music video to PepsiRockBand.com to be eligible to win a moonman at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards.
Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit Roller Coaster at Universal Studios Florida, August 19, 2009
This unique roller coaster features an on-board sound system which allows the rider to choose the song which is played during the ride. While boarding the vehicle, the rider can choose from 30 main public songs; in addition, there are "bonus songs" which require a special code. Track number 101 is "The Temples of Syrinx". To hear this song, the rider must hold their finger down on the ride's logo for 8-10 seconds, then enter the track number.
Mercy Thompson: Homecoming, graphic novel by Patricia Briggs, August 25, 2009
Stefan the vampire wears a purple Rush Star tshirt throughout this graphic novel.
Guitar Hero 5, video game, September 1, 2009
"The Spirit Of Radio" (live) is one of 85 songs by 83 artists included in this video game. Although Rush has been included in previous Guitar Hero releases, this one is a rarity. We have confirmed with SRO/Anthem that this recording was taken from an unreleased live performance in Manchester on June 17, 1980 on the Permanent Waves Tour (Producer Terry Brown, Engineer Andy Rose, mobile truck recorder - Mobile Studio London). While there are no plans at this time for a live album release of the complete Manchester show, "anything can happen"...
Warehouse 13, television series
Suck, September 11, 2009
Alex Lifeson is one of an all star cast of actors and musicians who appear in this Canadian vampire rock and roll comedy film. Lifeson has a cameo as a Canadian border officer who stops a vampire rock band and asks them their business. After some small talk, Lifeson says "Are you a band? I used to be in a band too! Man, that brings me back! Well kids, have fun!" Later, Lifeson stops the vampire hunter, and when the hunter confirms he is coming to Canada for "hunting", Lifeson replies "Welcome home!" Click here to view the trailer.
Trailer Park Boys 2: Countdown To Liquor Day, September 25, 2009
This movie includes yet another cameo by Alex Lifeson in the role of a policeman, this time as an undercover male prostitute...
The Venture Bros., animated television series
Part of Cartoon Network's Adult Swim lineup, which has frequently referenced Rush.
Gary Unmarried, television series, aired November 4, 2009
In the opening scene of the November 4, 2009, episode titled "Gary Tries To Do It All" (season 2, episode 6), Gary complains about the cost of his daughter's youth orchestra with "it seemed pretty expensive, I could see if the orchestra played a little RUSH or AC/DC or something...".
It's Complicated, December 25, 2009
2112 sighting: Meryl Streep's character stays in room 2112.
Doctor Who Confidential, British documentary television series, December 25, 2009
"Countdown" was heard as the background music of the episode "Lords And Masters" of this documentary series which complements the revival of the British science fiction series.
High School, January 24, 2010
Starring Adrien Brody and Colin Hanks, the teaser trailer uses the opening keyboards from 2112 as its background music. A theatrical release of this film is still pending.
C.A., French-Canadian television program, March 8th, 2010
Martin, a mid-thirties construction worker, breaks up with his wife and goes back to his parents' house. Hanging on his bedroom wall, among other rock posters from the 80's including Samantha Fox and the Ramones, is a huge Permanent Waves poster.
Fringe, television series
Quotidiana by Patrick Madden, April 28, 2010
A book of personal essays covering a wide variety of subjects with the unifying theme being the influence of Rush on the author. Rush lyrics are quoted throughout the book, with permission from Neil Peart himself. The book's third essay, Remember Death (those who deciphered the skull-and-femur Morse code message in their Roll the Bones tourbook will recognize this phrase), is especially Rush-related as the author remembers one summer day in 1981 when his friend placed headphones on his head and played "Tom Sawyer".
Wizards Of Waverly Place, television series, aired June 5, 2010
During the opening scene of the episode "Max's Secret Girlfriend" (season 3 episode 20), Alex and Harper discover that Max has a girlfriend. To keep his girlfriend a secret from his parents, he tells her his name is 'Tom Sawyer'. Alex says "'Tom Sawyer'? That is such an obvious lie, it's the name from the Rush song." Harper interjects "...and the classic book!" and Alex concludes "Wow that song was good, I didn't know they made a book out of it!" Later in the episode, Justin and Alex pretend to be his parents. Justin says "My son, Tom Sawyer, just the other day white-washed the pickett fence." Max whispers to Alex "What does white-wash mean?" And Alex replies "I don't know. It was never mentioned in the song!"
The Hard Times Of RJ Berger, television series, aired June 7, 2010
During the series premiere (season 1, episode 1) of this MTV original series, after most of the players are ejected from the school's basketball game, RJ is forced to suit up and "Tom Sawyer" is heard.
I'm In The Band, television series
Starcraft II: Wings Of Liberty, video game, released July 27, 2010
One of Raven's random sayings in this video game is "This vessel has assumumed control, it has assumed control."
Rookie Blue, television series, aired August 26, 2010
During the episode "Big Nickel" (season 1, episode 10), while on a long car ride to pick up a prisoner McNally asks Swarek "What kind of music do you like listening to?" Swarek replies "Rush, I'm a big Rush fan". She answers "Who?" and he says "I like The Who too. Classic Rock, you know."
Guitar Hero: Warriors Of Rock, video game, September 28, 2010
This edition of Guitar Hero includes "2112" in its entirety along with unique Rush graphics, as well as narration by Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee.
"It's official: Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock has the most epically prog-rock finale of any music video game yet. Rush have teamed with Activision for the fall release, which features a story-based Quest Mode that includes with hero wannabes playing the entirety of '2112', a seven-part suite from the Canadian band's 1976 album of the same name. The story of the game's final segment roughly follows Rush's opus, and will be narrated by lead singer Geddy Lee and guitarist Alex Lifeson. 'In our story, the caves of 2112 are where our hero finds the lost guitar,' says Lee. 'This rediscovery of music is much like the Guitar Hero warriors' journey to find the Demi-God of Rock's Legendary guitar, which has been trapped in a cavern.' Watch exclusive footage from the game here...The venues include Rush-inspired caves and a faithful rendering of the now-defunct CBGB...Despite added emphasis on storytelling and quest progression, however, the game remains focused on rock. 'I think it's a great way to introduce people of all ages to music of various styles by all kinds of different bands,' says Lifeson, 'while providing a launching pad for kids who want to get into playing music.'" - Rollingstone.com, July 20, 2010
TSN Opening Hockey Montage, premiered October 13, 2010
Featuring "Caravan" as the theme song, as players talk about "thinking big" as the season begins, Geddy chimes in "I can't stop thinking big...". The video concludes with Neil Peart's recording of The Hockey Theme. Click here for the video.
Locke And Key, "Keys To The Kingdom", Issue #2, graphic novel by Joe Hill, October 20, 2010
Written by Joe Hill (novelist and son of Stephen King), during issue 2 of the "Keys To The Kingdom" story arc, one of the protagonists visits a mental health facility and in one panel we can see the room occupation chart for the hospital floor. Included among the occupants are G. Lee, A. Lifeson and N. Peart.
Pixies, October 2010
While on tour in Chile in October 2010, Pixie's drummer David Lovering was photographed wearing a Fly By Night tshirt. The following March, in an interview with the Montreal Gazzette, Loveringly acknowledged Neil Peart as one of his greatest influences:
"...A bigger surprise comes when the subject of their influences is raised. Lovering acknowledged reverence for John Bonham, 'any drummer who played for Steely Dan' and especially Rush's Neil Peart. 'When I first started playing for the Pixies, I was doing a lot of fills, believe me, just like Neil would do. It took a long time and a lot of concentration to keep it toned down,'" - MontrealGazzette.com, March 21, 2011
Jews And Baseball: An American Love Story, November 5, 2010
"Hope" from Snakes & Arrows is included in the soundtrack to this documentary film.
AT&T High-Speed Internet television commercial, November 2010
In this television commercial for AT&T High-Speed Internet which has the tagline "now everyone can explore the world from home", a man wearing a Rush tshirt featuring the logo from the debut album is shown visiting various retail stores on a giant computer mouse. The mouse represents that he is shopping online, and he eventually stops at a music store to purchase a matching Rush "onesie" for his newborn baby girl.
The Big Bang Theory, aired December 9, 2010
Season 4, episode 10, "The Alien Parasite Hypothesis", included a Rush "sighting". Sheldon Cooper says "The best number is 73. 73 is the 21st prime number. Its mirror, 37, is the 12th, and its mirror, 21, is the product of multiplying - hang on to your hats - 7 and 3. In binary, 73 is a palindrome: 1001001, which backwards is 1001001. Exactly the same."
"Music tutor by day and tribute band guitarist by night, Matt 'Lerxst' Johnston doesn't have an enemy in the world...so he thinks. One night a pretty young woman tries to smother him in his sleep, and it's not for the usual reasons a woman would have for wanting to inflict harm upon him! The dream he enjoyed at the time quickly spirals into a nightmare of mistaken identities and nosy investigators who threaten Lerxst's freedom, to say nothing of coming close to discovering his grandmother's secret 'herb garden.' Armed only with a guitar and endless questions, Lerxst escapes the discomfort of his beach home and hides out in New York City to learn the true identity of his would-be assailant. Instead he learns more about himself and what he needs to do to survive the next attempt on his life. And what a long, strange trip it is..."
Skoda Fabia, television commercial, Winter 2011
2112 sighting: in this Spanish television commercial for the Skoda Fabia, the car is offered in 2112 color combinations.
Criminal Minds, television series, aired February 16, 2011
The episode "Today I Do" (season 6, episode 15), has the synopsis "A deranged woman tracks down the boyfriend of a woman whom she has abducted. Meanwhile the BAU puts out an APB on the missing man." The episode includes a scene were the deranged woman seduces the boyfriend of the woman whom she has abducted with beer and Rush. As "Closer To The Heart" live from A Show of Hands playes on the sterio, the man says "Oh my God, this is the best damn bootleg that Rush ever did...how did you know this is my favorite?!" Click here for the full episode, or click here for a video clip containing the scene with Rush.
Minotron: 2112, video game, March 2, 2011
2112 sighting: in 1991 Llamasoft released LLAMATRON: 2112, one of the most popular games ever on the Atari ST and Amiga, considered by many to be an all-time classic. Today, 20 years later, the Minotaur Project brings you a modern update to that legendary game, featuring a legendary beast - the Minotaur.
Jersey Shore, television series, aired March 10th, 2011
Midway into the episode "Gym, Tan, Find Out Who Sammi Is Texting" (season 3, episode 11), Ronnie wears a black tshirt with patches that read "RUSH" on both shoulders; unfortunately this is not an official Rush shirt.
Kankered, September 2011
An independent Canadian production filmed in Calgary, Alberta, two Rush posters can be seen in the film's trailer, and "Fancy Dancer" live from '74 can be heard in the trailer's soundtrack. For more information, visit the film's Facebook page.
Tapas & Beijos (Slaps & Kisses), television series, April 5, 2011 - present
In this Brazilian sitcom, a Snakes & Arrows-era Rush poster can be seen on the back wall of actor Fabio Assuncao's apartment.
United States Of Tara, television series, aired April 11, 2011
During "The Full Fuck You Finger" (season 3, episode 3), as Marshall is helping his dad Max clean his hoarder grandmother's house, he comes across a second place trophy for Max's band "Beaver Lamp" from a battle of the bands competition. Max explains how bad they were with "we lost to a Rush cover band, that ought to tell you everything you need to know about Beaver Lamp." Ouch!
Restaurant 2112, Gothenburg, Sweden, opened April 21, 2011
2112 sighting: Two members of the Swedish metal band In Flames, Peter Iwers (bass) and Björn Gelotte (guitar), are partners in a new restaurant which opened April 21st in their hometown of Gothenburg, Sweden. Check out the restaurant's website or Facebook page.
"2112 is inspired by Rush, and was released in 76, and is one of the best records in the prog genre...so we chose 2112". - co-owner Peter Iwers, Metal Hammer magazine
Archer, animated television series
Sanctuary, television series, aired April 22, 2011
During the episode "Hangover" (season 3, episode 12), the Sanctuary server's new passcode is "GEDDYLEE". Dr. Magnus asks "Geddy Lee?" to which Henry responds, "the lead singer of Rush." Dr. Magnus then observes, "isn't that Will's favorite band?".
Smallville, television series, aired April 22, 2011
"YYZ" sighting: during the episode "Booster" (season 10, episode 18), an equipment case is seen stenciled with the letters "YYZ".
This Must Be the Place, May 20, 2011
2112 sighting: in this Sean Penn film which premiered at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, 8:40 into the film Sean Penn's character loses a game of handball by the score of 21-12.
Annihilators vol. 1 no. 2, by Marvel Comics, June 2011
This second story of this comic stars the space traveling adventurers Rocket Raccoon and Groot, in "There Is Unrest In The Forest, There Is Trouble With The Trees".
Ready Player One, novel by Ernest Cline, August 16, 2011
This novel includes Rush references sprinkled throughout, including a major scene based on "2112".
Here Comes Trouble: Stories from My Life, by Michael Moore, September 13, 2011
This biography opens with a quote from "Subdivisions".
Lucky Space, Facebook game, September ~27, 2011
2112 sighting: As noted during the opening of this game, the game takes place in the year 2112.
Hunky Dory, October 25, 2011
Set in 1976, this British film stars Minnie Driver as a teacher who gets her students to do a musical version of The Tempest with pop music from the 60's and 70's. Although not featured in the trailer, the film includes the students performing Rush's "A Passage To Bangkok" along with songs by Pink Floyd, ELO, Bowie, and more.
No Regrets, by Ace Frehley, November 1, 2011
On page 188-189 of this biography by the KISS guitarist, Ace Frehley tells an early tour story with Rush from 1975:
"I have so many road stories, but one that always comes to mind is the tour we did in the summer of 1975 with Rush opening for us. I always liked Rush (and still do). After a few weeks on tour I started to get to know the guys in the band, and their very funny tour manager, Howie. One thing led to another and before long Peter and I were getting visits from the Rush boys. It usually turned into late evenings filled with beer and grass and whatever else was around. Alex Lifeson, the band's guitarist, used to do this hysterical routine with a large paper laundry bag. He'd draw a ridiculous giant face on the bag with a black marker and put it over his head with a couple of holes poked in it so he could see and breathe. Everyone in the room at this point was either drunk or stoned, but usually a little of both. Anyway, Alex would go into this routine with the bag over his head and while smoking a joint out of his eye he put everyone into total hysterics. He really milked the routine until everyone was gasping for air!"
Citibank 'Airport' Commerical, November 2011
"2112" sighting: During this commercial for Citibank's iPad app, an airport's "departures" list shows flight "2112" leaving for Toronto. At first glance, this might seem coincidental, until you notice flight "5150" leaving for Los Angeles (home to Van Halen). I wouldn't be surprised if there are other music references included on the screen as well!
Something to Cry About, novel by Kinnon McArthur, December 6, 2011
Based on the author's life, on page 286 the main character says "My favorite band, Rush, is from Canada. I first heard them at a college party in 1979 and they still perform today. They have provided the soundtrack to my life and their 2002 album, Vapor Trails, helped me get through my divorce."
Goon, January 6, (UK), February 24 (Canada), 2012
"Working Man" is heard in this film about a bouncer whose fighting skills land him a place on a minor league hockey team.
Alcatraz, television series, aired January 30, 2012
"2112" sighting: during the episode "Cal Sweeney" (season 1, episode 4), prisoner #2112 is captured.
Switched At Birth, television series, aired February 28, 2012
Late in the episode "Write A Lonely Soldier", Daphne (who is deaf) tells Wilke that she wants to communicate with him in sign language. Wilke responds "Alright, what's the sign for Wilke's the greatest bass player since Geddy Lee?" The episode is online at ABC Family's website.
"Rock & Brews" Restaurant, Los Angeles, opened April 3, 2012
KISS' Gene Simmons is part owner of the "Rock & Brews" restaurant franchise, which claims to offer an atmosphere that is "like being back stage at a rock concert". The first restaurant opened April 3rd in Los Angeles; the event served to benefit the Rock 4 Vets program, and was featured on the Gene Simmons Family Jewels episode "KISS A Vet". As seen in this screen capture, there is apparently a HUGE Rush starman logo filling an entire wall of the restaurant! LA Rush fans, do us a favor and drop by Rock & Brews and send us some additional pics of this wall! In addition, check out the "Rock & Brews" menu, which includes "Red Barchetta Bruchetta".
That's My Boy, June 15, 2012
"Limelight" is heard during the opening credits of this film by Adam Sandler. In addition, Sandler's car, a beat up Pontiac Fiero, has a large Starman emblazoned on the hood, as seen in the film's restricted redband trailer.
In the Tall Grass, novella by Stephen King and Joe Hill, June-August 2012
A novel published in two parts in the June/July and August issues of Esquire, co-written by Stephen King and Joe Hill [Joe Hill is King's son, and has previously referenced Rush in his graphic novel Locke And Key, "Keys To The Kingdom", Issue #2, published in 2010; see previous entry above]. Two college kids, brother and sister Cal and Becky, are traveling cross country when they encounter something strange in the tall grass on the side of a Kansas highway; includes this Rush reference:
"Folk music wasn't an area of expertise for Cal; he was more of a Rush fan. They had been surfing on Permanent Waves all the way across the country."
Ted, June 29, 2012
At 8:47 into the during the opening credits, there is a large 2112 starman poster on Mark Walberg's bedroom wall.
Expendibles 2, August 17, 2012
2112 sighting: A team of mercenaries conduct their missions in an old Canadair CL-215 floatplane. In real life this plane served as a waterbomber for the Province of Ontario, and for the film, the airplane's call letters are "XP 2112".
2112, snowboarding film, September 2012
The 21st in a series of snowboarding films by Standard Films, this their 2012 edition is appropriately named 2112. Standard Films is a snowboard film company that has produced a snowboarding film every year since 1991. 2012's film will be their 21st so they have titled it appropriately 2112. They even use a red star in the logo. ">2112. In addition, a red star is found on the cover.
2012 Volkswagen Passat Television Commercial, September 20, 2012
This television commercial, announcing that the Passat is the 2012 Motortrend car of the year, features the driver airdrumming (complete with a stick flip) to "Fly By Night".
"Sometimes the right idea gets sent to you and it's funny, and you go, 'yeah, funny's good, we'll go with that'! I think we just react to humor." - Geddy Lee on the Volkswagen Fly By Night commercial, WSJ.com, October 26, 2012
Revival, the comic book, issue #4, September 24, 2012
In this ongoing Image Comics creator-owned series by Tim Seeley and Mike Norton, the crematorium technician of the Heinlien Funeral Home is wearing an original-logo Rush shirt under his lab coat.
Up All Night, television series, aired November 15, 2012
During the episode "Thanksgiving", the Brinkley's flight is canceled and after rushing to the store to buy last minute Thanksgiving dinner supplies, they come home to find Scott and his friends have invaded their house and are doing keg stands while "Tom Sawyer" is blaring out of the stereo. The episode is online at NBC.com.
The Chew, television cooking talk show, aired November 16, 2012
During the Thanksgiving episode "Sensational Sides", Michael Symon wore a Fly By Night tshirt, seen peeking above his hoodie. The episode is online at NBC.com.
American Dad, animated television series, aired December 2, 2012
The episode "Error Guitar" (Ssason 9, episode 5), has Stan coming home to find his son Steve and his friend in the garage playing air guitar to "2112". The song is also heard later in the episode, and an apartment is numbered 2112. Click here for a video clip
Far Cry 3, video game, December 4, 2012
2112 sighting: in this videogame from software publisher Ubisoft, there is a easter egg of sorts for Ubisoft's other videogame franchise, Assassins Creed, which has the added plus of also including a 2112 sighting. One of the "Letters Of The Lost" mentions a passcode 122112.
One Way Or Another, music video by One Direction, February 20, 2013
One Direction's Harry Styles was frequently pictured in early 2013 wearing a Presto tour shirt, including the video of the band's cover of Blondie's "One Way Or Another".
For What It's Worth, television series, aired March 8, 2013
During episode 3, "Michael Ochs & Paul Mawhinney", the hosts visit photographic archivist Michael Ochs who has one of the world's largest collections of rock and pop culture photographs, including a file drawer dedicated to Rush.
The Lords Of Salem, April 19, 2013
A film by Rob Zombie, his wife Sheri Moon Zombie, who appears in all of his films, plays a Rush-loving DJ turned coven member. The film's official soundtrack includes The Spirit of Radio".
Lockup - Cleveland: Extended Stay, television series, April 27, 2013
This episode of MSNBC's prison documentary series was titled "Rush" (season 16, episode 4), as one of the featured inmates was an old rocker that used to play in a few bands, who was so convinced he would get out soon that he bought tickets to see Rush on tour.
Regular Show, animated television series on Cartoon Network
The Sun Is Sick, the comic book, July 2013
Released by Wayne Coyne, frontman for The Flaming Lips, this adult themed comic book is complete with a fake ad page in the front mimicing real comic books. Nested into one of the ads to purchase the LP "Beetles at Shea" is the text "Rush rules!".
Pawn Stars, reality television series, aired August 1, 2013
During the episode "Colt To The Touch" (Season 7, Episode 15, aired August 1, 2013), a customer brings in a collection of "Chu-bops" (small bubble gum record albums which came in miniature replica album covers circa 1980), and one of the albums was Permanent Waves; Rick asks Corey "do you know any songs by Rush? Tom Sawyer?" and Corey replies "that's funny, I almost said 'Huckleberry Finn'."
Vodafone Netherlands' "Workout" television commercial, September 2013
During this television commercial, one of the framed photographs on the wall is of Rush taken at the Ahoy in Rotterdam in 1981.
Knights of Badassdom, September 24, 2013
This horror-comedy film, which premiered at the 2013 ICon Festival, is about live action roll players whose final goal is to reach the Temple of Syrinx.
Revolution, television series, September 25, 2013
In the opening scene of the episode "Born in the U.S.A." (season 2, episode 1), an actor sang and performed an acoustic guitar rendition of 'Tom Sawyer'.
Battle Of The Blades, television series, October 20, 2013
In this skating competition where retired NHL hockey players are paired up with figure skaters, Amanda Evora and Scott Thornton performed their routine to Closer to the Heart.
The Carrie Diaries, television series, October 25, 2013
During the October 25th season two premiere, "Win Some Lose Some", Carrie comments how her friends are at a bar without out her that is "the place for rock and roll". A series of 70s/80s rock bands are shown, including this photo of Rush featuring the doublenecks!
Flipping Vegas, reality television series
Mun Ainoot 30 Minsaa (My Only 30 Minutes), the Finish television series, aired December 19, 2013
During the episode "Korjaus" (episode 12, aired December 19, 2013), two characters wear 2112 tshirts.
Deadpool #22, by Marvel Comics, January 9, 2014
This comic includes a scene where Agent Gorman is on the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier trying to guess the password of someone who has posters for Spider-Man and RUSH on his wall. He succeeds after guessing "SPIDEYLOVER2112".
Maul: Lockdown, the novel, January 28, 2014
Author Joe Schreiber states in the acknowledgements to this Star Wars novel "Vigilant readers will also find the influence of Geddy Lee, Neil Peart and Alex Lifeson among these pages, three gentlemen whose music animates much of the action as I initially conceived it in my mind."
Walmart: Creating American Jobs, television commerical, February 6, 2014
"Working Man" was featured in this commerical for Walmart announcing their pledge to invest $250 billion in U.S. manufacturing jobs over the next 10 years.
Adventure Time, animated television series, aired March 3, 2014
During the episode "Bad Timing" (Season 5, Episode 49, aired March 3, 2014), Princess Bubblegum unveils her new time machine, and explains how it is controlled by a pair of special gloves. The gloves display the time and it reads 21:12.
South Park: The Stick of Truth, the video game, March 4, 2014
After unlocking access to the "O Canada" level, a Rush poster can be seen on the wall of one of the houses.
Zippo Catalog, 2014
The 2014 Zippo catalog includes two official Rush lighters found on page 71 with a retail price of $30.95 each. Unfortunately, according to Zippo's headquarters in Bradford Pennsylvania, the lighters are unavailable as the licensing agreement fell through before going into production but after the catalog had gone to print.
"Milwaukee", music video by The Both, April 9, 2014
In the video by The Both, the collaboration between Aimee Mann and Ted Leo, they hire a drummer (Ted's uncle, also played by Leo) who has the Rush logo and the star on his jean jacket, and the 4:32 mark it shows "Ed's" list of top drummers including you know who... From their self titled debult album The Both released on Tuesday and can be preordered on iTunes/cd.
Chipotle's "Recipe For The Perfect Fountain Drink" by Bill Hader, introduced May 15, 2014
Part of Chipotle restaurant's Cultivating Thought author series featuring original essays by various luminaries, Hader's recipe includes "1 drum solo from 'YYZ' (Rush) of Sprite."
Return To Zero, television movie, May 17, 2014
40 minutes into this film which aired on the Lifetime network, a conversation takes place at a bar between Aaron (Paul Adelstein) and his coworker Dana (Sarah Jones), where he refers to his penis as Gedddy Lee:
Dana: "3 beers and you are already sloppy. You're not getting laid tonight." Aaron: "Poor Geddy Lee." Dana: "Who's Geddy Lee?" Aaron: "The lead singer of Rush...He is also head of the rhythm section of my personal humpty-hump band." Dana: "Hmmm... Poor little Geddy Lee." Aaron: "He's not little. He's of average to maybe above average height." Dana: "I'm sure he'll be able to lay some sweet beats down once the band gets back together." Aaron: "Jesus Christ ... he's the bassist."
Playing House, television series, aired May 20, 2014
During the episode "Drumline" (Season 1, Episode 5), Maggie attends her high school drumline reunion where she reconnects with an old crush that she and her friend Emma refer to as the guy "in the Rush t-shirt", and he is later shown wearing a Fly By Night t-shirt. The girls end up getting arrested and when Rush t-shirt guy picks them up from jail in his van Maggie is now wearing the Rush t-shirt. In the final scene of the episode "Limelight" is heard.
Trailer Park Boys: Live in Fu**in' Dublin, the Netflix original movie, June 1, 2014
After Bubbles, Ricky and Julian recreate and lip synch Rush's classic video for "Closer To The Heart", Bubbles learns he won a Rush internet contest to determine their greatest fan when Alex Lifeson sends a video confirming Bubbles and three friends will be flown to Dublin in Rush's jet to see the band. The movie later includes a partial live performance by Bubbles of "Closer to the Heart" and "Limelight", and during the credits Rush's original video for "Closer to the Heart" plays along side the Trailer Park Boys lip synch version.
Apple's WWDC 2014 Keynote Presentation, June 2, 2014
During Apple World Wide Developer's Conference keynote presentation, Apple's Craig Federighi introduced new features in Safari by searching for 'Rush', and the band was the first entry listed.
The Bridge, television series, July 10, 2013 -
Daniel: "Rush? Really?" Gary: "Yeah - I like Rush. So what?" Daniel: "Are you Canadian?" Gary: "No. I'm just a fan." Daniel: "Do you like them when you're sober? I mean that's impressive. I mean 2112 is an okay album but" Gary: "Hemispheres dude?!" Daniel: "Hemispheres is like...ok it's fine...I may be buzzed now but tomorrow I'll be sober and you sir, will still be a Rush fan."
Rush, television series, aired July 24, 2014
During the episode "Don't Ask Me Why" (season 1, episode 2), Dr. Rush attends an MMA fighter who asks, "So, Rush like the band?" to which he replies "Sure, like the band."
"A Woman At A Prog Rock Show", from Finding Jesus by Winston Rowantree, October 28, 2014
Finding Jesus is a essentially a book of "Where's Waldo"-esqe illustrations but with amusing cultural references. One of the illustrations is "A Woman at a Prog Rock Show" which features a Rush show, complete with dozens of Rush references.