'Twilight' heroine, werewolf inspire baby-naming Arizona parents - East Valley Tribune: Arizona

'Twilight' heroine, werewolf inspire baby-naming Arizona parents

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Posted: Wednesday, December 22, 2010 12:00 am | Updated: 9:37 pm, Sun Jan 16, 2011.

Followers of the “Twilight” series are apparently reproducing.

For the first time ever, the name Bella cracked the Top 20 for the names that parents gave to their newborn girls born this year in Arizona. A year earlier, it managed to rank just 77th on the list.

But the popularity of the novels and the movies that have followed — and of heroine Bella Swan -- apparently does not translate across the gender barrier when parents are choosing names for their sons.

The popularity list provides no indication of who is on “Team Jacob’’ and who is on “Team Edward,’’ the names that fans of each of the two hot male leads have given their own groups. Viewers have divided their loyalties between the werewolf and the vampire.

It’s true that Jacob is the most popular name for boys. But that’s not new: It also placed there last year — and a decade earlier.

And Edward? Still not popular. It didn’t even crack the Top 100.

The latest report from the Arizona Department of Health Services shows little volatility among names for boys in the last decade.

Aside from Jacob, the top of the chart is populated by some names that have become standards like Michael, David, Christopher, Angel and Gabriel. Jose also has managed to remain in the Top 10 for the last decade.

That’s not to say that tastes don’t change among the parents of boys.

Last year Noah clocked in at just 25th on the list. Now it is No. 10.

To find some real trends, however, take a look at those who are now 35. There are lots of Bobs and Steves from that era. Now you’d have to go to 48th on the list to find a Robert. And you won’t find Steven at all.

The pattern is slightly different for girls, with names sometimes rocketing up in the rankings, often based on pop culture, only to drop back.

Consider the name Nevaeh, which rocketed into the Top 20 in 2007. Various sources credited the sudden increase in popularity with a decision by Sonny Sandoval, frontman for the Christian rock group P.O.D. — Payable On Death — to choose that name for his newborn daughter and take her on MTV in 2000.

It’s still somewhat popular, but not as much, sliding this year to 27.

And Jessicas and Jennifers, very popular at one time? Far down the list, with Jennifer only hanging on by a thread at No. 100.

Most popular names for girls:    
2010 2009 2000 1990 1975
1 -- Isabella Isabella Emily Jessica Jennifer
2 -- Sophia Sophia Ashley Ashley Amy
3 -- Mia Mia Samantha Amanda Michelle
4 -- Emma Emma Alexis Brittany Heather
5 -- Olivia Emily Jessica Not named Melissa
6 -- Emily Olivia Hannah Stephanie Lisa
7 -- Abigail Abigail Madison Samantha Stephanie
8 -- Ava Madison Alyssa Sarah Angela
9 -- Madison Ava Jennifer Nicole Christina
10 -- Natalie Samantha Taylor Jennifer Rebecca
11 -- Samantha Natalie Brianna Elizabeth Kimberly
12 -- Victoria Chloe Victoria Megan Andrea
13 -- Elizabeth Alexis Elizabeth Danielle Jessica
14 -- Chloe Ashley Sarah Kayla Maria
15 -- Alexis Elizabeth Lauren Amber Elizabeth
16 -- Hailey Alyssa Abigail Melissa Veronica
17 -- Addison Victoria Maria Alyssa Monica
18 -- Camila Valeria Emma Lauren Shannon
19 -- Ella Brianna Megan Heather Amanda
20 -- Bella Taylor Sydney Emily Nicole
Most popular names for boys:    
1 -- Jacob Jacob Jacob Michael Michael
2 -- Anthony Alexander Michael Christopher Jason
3 -- Daniel Angel Daniel Joshua Christopher
4 -- Alexander Daniel Jose Daniel David
5 -- Angel Anthony Joshua Matthew Robert
6 -- Michael Ethan Anthony David Daniel
7 -- Gabriel David Matthew Andrew James
8 -- Jayden Michael David Ryan John
9 -- Ethan Aiden Jesus Not named Brian
10 -- Noah Christopher Andrew Anthony Matthew
11 -- Aiden Gabriel Joseph Joseph Richard
12 -- Jose Jose Christopher Nicholas William
13 -- Joseph Joshua Brandon Robert Joseph
14 -- Julian Jacob Tyler Tyler Steven
15 -- Andrew Noah Nicholas Jacob Eric
16 -- David Logan Zachary Justin Joshua
17 -- Christopher Matthew Ryan Kyle Scott
18 -- Adrian Jesus Angel James Aaron
19 -- Joshua Jayden Gabriel Jose Jeremy
20 -- Logan Adrian Alexander John Ryan

Source: Arizona Department of Health Services

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