A brief history of Easter eggs* in the mediaFeature of the week
An “Easter egg” is an inside joke or hidden message concealed within a piece of media such as a film, TV programme, video game or even website. An online cartridge company has created an infographic showing that Easter eggs are not quite as modern as many think.
The popularity of Easter eggs in the media has soared in the last decade, thanks to the power of the internet. There are now whole sites dedicated towards uncovering inside jokes, subliminal messages and unexpected features in movies, TV series, computer programmes and more.
Many people however don’t realise that the Easter egg has been around in the media for just a little while longer than they expect, in fact, almost a century. Online cartridge company, Cartridge Save, has produced a timeline style infographic showing just how early these hidden messages have been inserted into our media.
The first examples of what we’d now think of as Easter eggs appear in 39 out of 52 of Hitchcock’s films from 1927 onwards where the man himself makes cameos appearances. 1932 saw the release of movie Scarface featuring foreshadowing Xs in scenes in which characters who were soon to die appeared. However it was the video game Adventure which is credited as the first true Easter egg where an Atari employee hid the message “Created by Warren Robinett” within the game.
The term “Easter egg” is said to be coined from the 1975 movie The Rocky Horror Picture Show when the cast had a real life Easter egg hunt but accidentally left a number of eggs around the set that subsequently appear in the film.
By the way, there’s a little Easter egg hidden within the infographic itself – can you find it?