|Elodie Yung as Jinx in 'G.I. Joe: Retaliation'.
I've been debating whether to do Jinx as a name or not. Maybe it's just a little bit too gimmicky as a Halloween name, not really usable as a baby name.
Jinx is a word name - as a verb it means to cast an evil spell on someone or bring bad luck, as a noun it means a person or thing that brings bad luck. It's also one of the seven different types of spells in the 'Harry Potter' series. It's because of the idea that a Jinx is a negative thing that I wonder if it would be too much of a negative experience for a child to grow up with this name.
Then I had a conversation with my husband the other day that gave me second thoughts. It seems there is a new female champion in the video game 'League of Legends' and her name just so happens to be Jinx. He thinks it would be a great name. To which I posed the question "Do you think it would work as a name on it's own, or only as a nickname?' For the above reason I'm pretty firmly in the nickname only headspace, but he gave it a moments thought and replied that he actually likes it just fine as a given name, and in fact thinks it'd be really cool.
I have to admit I do love the sound of Jinx, I think it's really cute. It reminds me a little of the saying "Jinkies!", the catchphrase of Velma in 'Scooby-Doo'. And maybe it's because I think it's cute that I feel it's more of a "girly" name.
Turns out other people tend to think it's more of a girls name too, and that it can be used as a given name. Jinx has charted a few times intermittently for girls in the U.S. The first was in 1926, most likely inspired by the 1925 silent movie 'Galloping Jinx'. In then charted through much of the '40's, '50's and into the '60's primarily thanks to actress and model Eugenia "Jinx" Falkenburg. Besides acting and modelling, she also entertained troops during World War 2 and hosted a popular talk show with her husband called 'Tex and Jinx'.
These days when I think of the name Jinx there are a few female characters that come to mind, and they all give this name a strong, sexy, feminine appeal. The new 'League of Legends' character is one - you can check out her music video below. Another comes in the form of Bond girl Giacinta "Jinx" Johnson, brought to life by Halle Berry in 'Die Another Day' (and who doesn't remember that scene as she steps out of ocean in her orange bikini). I thought her nickname came from the Gi/Ji sound in her name Giacinta, but it actually comes from the fact that she was born on Friday 13th. And then there's Jinx from the G.I. Joe universe, who appeared in this years' 'G.I. Joe: Retaliation', played by Elodie Yung.
At the other end of the spectrum - and with a slightly different spelling - you get Mr Jinks though. Best known as Robert de Niro's toilet flushing cat in the 'Meet The Parents' movies, he is also a Hanna-Barbera cartoon cat from the 'Pixie and Dixie and Mr Jinks' segment that used to play during 'The Huckleberry Hound Show'. This particular spelling brings to mind mischief and hi-jinks rather than bad luck and curses, which helps to give the name Jinx more of a fun image.
Sexy tough girls and crafty cats aside, I still personally think it's best as a nickname, so a child isn't permanently labelled as "bad luck". In which case it could probably be used for pretty much any child with a name starting with J or G, or containing a "Ji" sound. And of course, it's the perfect nickname for a child born on Halloween.