Trivia: In the scene where Wendy is on her bed reading a graphic novel, the cover is for Oddly Normal. Viper Comics produces the graphic novels for that series as well as The Middleman. The title character is a 10-year-old girl, half-witch and half-human, raised by her aunt in the land of Fignation.
Lacey: Wow, Dub-Dub. That's...
Wendy: A painting of a gun-toting, genetically enhanced, super-genius gangster gorilla. Tomorrow I'm starting on a new one. I already have a sketch and a layout and everything. It's a succubus fashion model. Which is just like a regular fashion model, except with pointy teeth and red eyes and a thirst for the innocence of young men.
Lacey: Well, you're in such a good mood. And you're being so productive.
Wendy: Yeah, well, my days of painter's block are way behind me. I actually have a job I'm excited about.
Lacey: You're excited about working for a temp agency?
Wendy: Yeah, well, it's a special temp agency. And I'm painting like a fiend.
Wendy: I hate him so much I might mount him.
Dr. Newleaf: You'll what?
Wendy: Never mind. Yipee kai yay (beep).
The Middleman: Great Hearts of Palm. that is grotesque.
The Middleman: I know you and I have been through Hell and back together…
Wendy: I thought Hell and the Underworld were two different things?
Wendy: Shouldn't it be "Middleperson" or "Middlewoman"?
The Middleman: We did have a Middleboy once.
Wendy: What does that make me, the "Middlegirl"?
The Middleman: What is this device?
Wendy: Uhh, it's the thingy you point at things with.
The Middleman: This is the BTRS scanner.
Wendy: And BTRS stands for…?
The Middleman: Beyond the Realm of Science. As in, this machine scans for things that are…
Wendy: Beyond the Realm of Science? Wow. Handy.
Ida: If you ask me, one less rich wench in the world might not be so tragic.
The Middleman: That rich wench, as you call her, probably has a family who loves her.
Ida: So did Charlie Manson.
Wendy: So did I ace it, or did I ace it?
The Middleman: There's acing it, and there's what you did. Kind of like shooting a cow with a Howitzer.
Wendy: I would never shoot a cow.
Wendy: Why do people feel the need to do this to themselves. She was a total plastic surgery victim.
Ida: Just you wait, Peachfuzz, until gravity gets the best of you.
Wendy: Can you please act appropriately?
Lacey: When did I ever do that?
Wendy: Holy crap on a stick, is that thing real?
The Middleman: Yes. It is a gift Carl Fabergé was about to present to Czar Nicholas before a Middleman spirited him out of Russia to work on the lens system for the Great Steam Laser of 1917.
Wendy: I'll tell you what you could do with it.
The Middleman: Will it be rated G?
Wendy: Doubt it.
The Middleman: Let's skip it, then.
Wendy: I can't believe you put training wheels on my gun.
The Middleman: Got your dad's lucky lighter?
Wendy: Unless you stole it again.
The Middleman: They may call themselves hunters, but to me they're just serial killers of animals.
Ida: We've got a red ball.
Referencing the 2002 Steven Spielberg movie Minority Report (based on a 1956 short story by Philip K. Dick). The movie, starring Tom Cruise, Colin Farrell, Samantha Morton, and Max Von Sydow, follows a future crimes division that uses psychic "pre-cogs" to see murders and stop them before they happen. A red ball is a crime of passion, seen only moments before, thus requiring quick action.
Lacey: If you don't "shout-shout-let-it-all-out", this thing with Ben is going to eat you alive.
Referencing "Shout", a 1985 song by British band Tears for Fears. It is the band's eighth single release and their most popular, reaching the Top Ten in 25 countries. The song was written by Roland Orzabal and Ian Stanley.
Wendy: Where in Carmen Sandiego is Kamchatka?
Referencing the PBS series Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego, based on the popular computer game, which feature investigators who have to solve geographical clues to track down the elusive thief, Carmen Sandiego.
Wendy: Even G.I. Joe had a spacesuit.
Referencing the cartoon government super military group G.I. Joe. featured in the television series G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero (1982-1994, later 1997). The series, loosely based on the action figures, chronicled the battles of the Joes primarily vs. the Cobra terrorist organization.
Wendy: It's got that CSI vibe.
Referencing the CBS series that premiered in 2000 starring William Petersen as Gil Grissom, the leader of a team of CSI (Crime Scene Investigation) experts who solve murders through the use of cutting-edge forensic technology. The series has spawned two spin-off series, CSI: NY and CSI: Miami.
Wendy: Don't get on my case for Jack Bauering the thing.
Referencing the FOX television series 24, which stars Kiefer Sutherland as counter-terrorist Jack Bauer, who is know for his ruthless tactics when interrogating suspects who have critical information.
Back to the Future
There are several references to the 1985 science fiction/comedy movie, when Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) inadvertently goes back in time and almost prevents his parents from marrying, with the assistance of Dr. Emmett Brown (Christopher Lloyd). The movie spawned two sequels and an animated television series.
* The Middleman introduces himself as Dr. Emmett Brown of the Hill Valley Institute. Hill Valley is where the movies are set.
* Dr. Emmett Brown, played by Christopher Lloyd, creates a time-traveling DeLorean and his young friend Marty McFly (Michael J. Fox) inadvertently goes back in time and almost prevents his parents from marrying. The movie spawned two sequels and an animated television series.
* The Middleman saying the bomb is hidden at the "Twin Pine Mall," the mall where Marty departs on his original time travel journey.
* The duo's cover identity references Bufford Tannen (the full name of Marty's antagonist Biff Tannen) and Clara Clayton (Mary Steenburgen's character in the third movie of the trilogy).
* The call letters of the TV station are "KBTTF" (the K indicating that the station is west of the Mississippi River, and the BTTF standing for Back to the Future).
* Wendy's alias of Strickland refers to Principal Strickland (James Tolkan), a character who appears in one form or another through all three films.
* The MiddleMobile runs on garbage, just as Dr. Brown powers the time circuits for the DeLorean by feeding garbage into a "Mr. Fusion."
* The rendezvous spot is near Lyon Estates, which is the housing subdivision where Marty and his parents live in the first two movies.
The Middleman: So that's all this is? The Most Dangerous Game with aliens.
Referencing the short story written by Richard Connell in 1924, featuring big game hunter Sangre Rainsford who is stranded on an island owned by General Zaroff, another big-game hunter who causes shipwrecks and then hunts the survivors for the ultimate game. The best known adaptation is RKO's 1932 movie with Joel McCrea, Leslie Banks and Fay Wray. However, many movies and television series have since used the concept of man hunting man.
Wendy: Yippie-kaye-yay, *bleep*.
Referencing the catchphrase of John McClane, as portrayed by Bruce Willis in the Die Hard movies, based on the novel Nothing Lasts Forever by Roderick Tharp. The line was voted the 96th greatest movie line of all time by Premiere Magazine in 2007.
Wendy: I have a strange craving to watch Island of the Flesh Eaters.
Referencing the 1979 movie known more commonly as Zombi 2. The plot features a reporter and three other people traveling to the island of Matul to locate a scientist who is conducting research into creating zombies. Movie highlights include graphic disembowelment and an underwater battle between a zombie and a shark.