Celebrity Names Blog

January Jones Chooses Superhero Names

January Jones Chooses Superhero Names
Martin/Fame Pictures

Mad Men actress January Jones has welcomed a son, Xander Dane Jones

Laura Wattenberg called Xander, a shortened form of Alexander, a "stealth hit baby name." By itself, Xander has gotten fairly popular since it debuted on the charts in 1999. (Xander ranks #254.) But pair Xander with its alternate spelling, Zander (#294), and you find the popularity is doubled.

So what happened in 1999 to make Xander a viable baby name? Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the cult series starring Sarah Michelle Gellar that ran from 1997-2003. The show is also responsible for bringing Willow to the charts, starting in 1998. 

In fact, shows with cute girls and magic have a history of launching baby names. Remember Samantha? This classic baby name is actually a new classic; it was never very popular before Bewitched. You can read more here, including inspired names for cute young witches in the comments.

As for Dane, it's an English surname meaning "dweller in the valley." Dane Whitman is also a Marvel comic book superhero, the secret identity of the Black Knight. In this way, it matches Xander. While not exactly a superhero, Xander Harris does help Buffy save the world against supernatural forces. 

What do you think of Xander Dane?




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September 20, 2011 2:35 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

Not to mention that Dane is also refers to a person from Denmark or of Danish descent.

When you also consider the number of Alexanders who answer to Xander... the name is even more stealthily popular.

September 20, 2011 11:18 PM
By Tarmie (not verified)

Love the name Xander, but I already used it on a beloved puppy so it has a "dog name" ring to it for me. Xander Dane more so. :)

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