Thursday, October 25, 2012


Aidan Turner is Mitchell in 'Being Human'
It would be hard and more than a little bit wrong to do a month of Halloween names and not throw in at least one vampire name.

Vampires have been hot property in the literary world for some time, with many of the good ones making it to our movie and TV screens. Think 'Interview With A Vampire' (based on Anne Rice's 'The Vampire Chronicles)', 'The Vampire Diaries', 'True Blood' (an adaptation of Charlaine Harris' 'The Southern Vampire Mysteries') and the mega powerhouse that is the 'Twilight' franchise. Vampires have definitely captured our interest and imaginations. They are usually seen as attractive and seductive, possibly because we are so entranced with the idea of being young (a time many consider to be the "prime" of their life) forever, but with the confidence and self assurance that comes with age and experience. Oh, and it doesn't hurt if they're a little broody too, because - you know - we like to think that vampires would actually feel kind of bad about killing people.

Today's vampire of choice seems to fit the bill perfectly. Mitchell was the main vampire character in the BBC supernatural TV series 'Being Human'. For those not familiar with the show, it is about vampire, a werewolf and a ghost who live together and their struggles to maintain a human appearance when their true appearances would shock and scare most people. If this sounds familiar, the show was also remade for American audiences by the SyFy channel. However the vampire character in that version is named Aiden. As an aside, in the BBC version Mitchell is played by Aidan Turner, so I wonder if this was an intended connection?

Mitchell was "turned" (into a vampire) when he was a young soldier in the first World War, making him over a hundred years old. Apparently he was quite the killing machine at first, but has since had an attack of the guilts and hence spends a lot of time and energy resisting the lure of feeding on humans. Young and sexy? Check. Powerful and broody? Double check.

Technically Mitchell is this characters last name (his first name is John), but he almost exclusively goes by Mitchell. The name Mitchell (pronounced MITCH-el) has quite an established history as a name. It is thought to be a Middle English variant of Michael, based on the French version Michel. Mitchell means 'who is like god' and has been widely used as both a first and a last name.

The original 'Being Human' trio
George, Mitchell & Annie

Mitchell is often seen as quite a strong, masculine name, although it does occasionally make an appearance as a girls name. For the boys, it has been in the 500 names in the US since 1880, peaking at position #71 in 1994. Since then it's popularity has been waning though, and in 2011 it was the lowest it has ever been at #420. Mitchell still remains strong in other countries though - here in Australia it was in the top 100 in 2011, holding position #53. Which still means that while lots of people like the name, you're not necessarily going to encounter a lot of other Mitchell's in your day to day life.

Many people also like Mitchell because it comes with ready made nickname Mitch. As a given name, Mitch is relatively rare (given to just 23 boys in America last year), so it would seem that people much prefer the longer version. I really like the name Mitchell, and it's nickname Mitch, Not just for this character, but also for the humorous but strong and decisive character of Lt Colonel Cameron Mitchell from the later seasons of 'Stargate SG-1', as played by Ben Browder.

But the name does have it's downfalls. The main one being the fact that Mitch rhymes with B***h, the second one being that it sounds very similar to popular girls name Michelle. But if that doesn't bother you, then this is likely to be one name that you won't have too much trouble getting a husband or boyfriend to agree to.

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