HOW STUFF WORKS
QUIZZES

FOLLOW US
The Origins of TV Shows and Movies Quiz
by Staff
The book is always better than the movie. The original is always better than the sequel. British is better than American. Not so fast — not all of those assumptions are correct. But, then, not all our ideas are new ...

Unlike its popular American predecessor, "The Golden Girls," this British sitcom only aired 11 episodes before it went to live at Shady Pines.

  • "The Brighton Girls"
  • "The Brighton Belles"
  • "The Upper Hand"

The American TV series "Homeland" is based on a series from which country?

  • Australia
  • Israel
  • Netherlands

What J.R.R. Tolkien work inspired Led Zeppelin's "Ramble On," off the "Led Zeppelin II" album?

  • "The Lord of the Rings"
  • "The Silmarillion"
  • "The Hobbit"

What action-thriller starring Bruce Willis is based on Roderick Thorp's book "Nothing Lasts Forever"?

  • "Die Hard"
  • "The Jackal"
  • "The Whole Nine Yards"

The American '70s sitcom "Sanford and Son" was based on which popular British sitcom?

  • "All Gas and Gaiters"
  • "Father, Dear Father"
  • "Steptoe and Son"

The original "Iron Chef" was hosted by Chairman Kaga in what country?

  • Japan
  • Laos
  • Singapore

Which book is NOT inspired by Homer's epic story of Odysseus, "The Odyssey"?

  • "Ransom" by David Malouf
  • "The Grapes of Wrath" by John Steinbeck
  • "The Penelopiad" by Margaret Atwood
  • "Ulysses" by James Joyce

Which series inspired Norman Lear's "All in the Family"?

  • "Justice for All"
  • "The Honeymooners"
  • "Till Death Us Do Part"

Which of the following was an "All in the Family" spinoff?

  • "Alice"
  • "Maude"
  • "Welcome Back, Kotter"

The U.S. sitcom "Maude" was known as "Maguy" when it was adapted in which country?

  • Belgium
  • France
  • Sweden

Oprah Winfrey and Danny Glover star in this movie, based on the Toni Morrison novel of the same name.

  • "Beloved"
  • "The Bluest Eye"
  • "Song of Solomon"

Stanley Kubrick's "Full Metal Jacket" debuted in 1987, adapted from what best-selling Marine Corps veteran-written novel?

  • "A Rumor of War" by Philip Caputo
  • "Dispatches" by Michael Herr
  • "The Short-Timers" by Gustav Hasford

Which Coen brothers movie gets its name from the 1941 Preston Sturges Hollywood comedy "Sullivan's Travels"?

  • "Burn After Reading"
  • "Hail, Caesar!"
  • "O Brother, Where Art Thou?"

True or false: Madame Bovary could be read as a female Don Quixote.

  • true
  • false

Is Jean Rhys' "Wide Sargasso Sea" the prequel or sequel to Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyre"?

  • prequel
  • sequel
  • neither

What Amy Heckerling comedy is a modern adaptation of Jane Austen's novel "Emma"?

  • "Clueless"
  • "Fast Times at Ridgemont High"
  • "Johnny Dangerously"

Martin Scorsese's "The Departed" is a remake of which Chinese film?

  • "A True Mob Story"
  • "Infernal Affairs"
  • "Internal Affairs"

Bonnie Raitt's 1991 hit "I Can't Make You Love Me" was inspired by a man who shot at his girlfriend's car but was written by which former NFL lineman?

  • Daryn Colledge
  • Frank Gore
  • Mike Reid

Which is NOT a spinoff of "Happy Days"?

  • "Laverne & Shirley"
  • "Mork & Mindy"
  • "The Facts of Life"

"Happy Days" is a spinoff of what American comedy series?

  • "Love, American Style"
  • "The Rockford Files"
  • "Wait Till Your Father Gets Home"

Which "Breaking Bad" character got his own spinoff?

  • Gus Fring
  • Jesse Pinkman
  • Saul Goodman

"The Amityville Horror" is based on a book by the same name about a house at what address?

  • 42 Wallaby Way
  • 112 Ocean Ave.
  • 124 Bluestone Road

Which John Updike novel is a prequel to William Shakespeare's "Hamlet"?

  • "Gertrude and Claudius"
  • "The Centaur"
  • "Toward the End of Time"

True or false: Quentin Tarantino's debut film, "Reservoir Dogs," has been accused of ripping off Ringo Lam's "City on Fire."

  • true
  • false

Which version of "The Ring" grossed more in Japanese theaters, the Japanese original directed by Hideo Nakata or the U.S. remake directed by Gore Verbinski?

  • "Ringu" (Japan)
  • "The Ring" (U.S.)

Alfred Hitchcock bought the film rights to Robert Bloch's horror novel "Psycho" in 1959 for how much money?

  • $3,500
  • $5,000
  • $9,500

Which song, based on a physical attack of CBS Evening News anchor Dan Rather, did R.E.M. release in 1993?

  • "Bang and Blame"
  • "Strange Currencies"
  • "What's The Frequency, Kenneth?"

Which John Sturges-directed Western is a remake of Akira Kurosawa's "Seven Samurai"?

  • "Bad Day at Black Rock"
  • "The Great Escape"
  • "The Magnificent Seven"

True or false: Sergio Leone's "A Fistful of Dollars" is a remake of Akira Kurosawa's "Yojimbo."

  • true
  • false

What horror novel, one of Kurt Cobain's favorite books, is the topic of Nirvana's "Scentless Apprentice"?

  • "Perfume: The Story of a Murderer" by Patrick Suskind
  • "The Gunslinger" by Stephen King
  • "Weaveworld" by Clive Barker