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  • Actor Allusion: In Season 1, Episode 11 "He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not, He Loves Me, Oops He's Dead" Shawn and crew end up speed dating and Shawn's first date is played by Teryl Rothery, who played the character of Dr. Janet Fraiser on Stargate SG-1. In the episode she says that she was raised on a farm and had a pet goat named "Cassy." "Cassy" is the name of the alien girl she adopted on Stargate as Dr. Fraiser.

 Shawn: This is just like that movie! You know, that movie with Sigourney Weaver? Where they dig all the holes?

Gus: Alien?

Shawn: No!

Gus: Aliens?

    • Also, heaven help us if the writers manage to cram in a West Wing reference.
    • Shawn's mother, played by Cybill Shepherd, is named Madeline.
    • Shawn tells Gus to "not be the only black lead on a major cable network" -- too late for that.
    • The Bourne references in "One, Maybe Two Ways Out" get funnier when you realize that Franka Potente, the spy in the episode, played Marie in the Bourne movies.
    • Shawn's forensic pathologist source (played by Kurt Fuller) tells him that a victim was killed by a Winchester 70. Fuller played Zachariah, an angelic enemy of the Winchester brothers on Supernatural.
    • In "Yang 3 in 2D," serial killer Mr. Yin is revealed to be a professor of fine art and history. The actor who plays him? Peter Weller, professor of fine art and history at Syracuse University. He really IS Buckaroo Banzai!
    • Kristy Swanson is suspected of being a vampire in "This Episode Sucks." This is particularly ironic when you realize what role Swanson is famous for.
      • Lucien (Tom Lenk) in the same episode had a recurring role in The Series.
    • Danny Glover plays a baseball coach in "Dead Man's Curve Ball."
  • Celebrity Paradox: Being big fans of Eighties pop culture, Shawn and Gus have made at least one reference to The Breakfast Club. But if Ally Sheedy played Allison Reynolds (you know, the basket case), then who's the serial killer Yang?
    • Judd Nelson, who has been personally referenced on previous episodes, guest starred in "Death is in the Air" as a scientist.
      • Then again, Judd Nelson looks very little like he did twenty years ago, so it doesn't seem so glaring when Shawn and Gus don't mention a resemblance.
    • In the "The Head, the Tail, the Whole Damn Episode" in which Jeri Ryan guest starred, Shawn makes reference to the season finale of Leverage, where Ryan had been a semi-regular cast member in the same season.
    • They also like to reference movies Dule Hill appeared in: "Holes" in "65 Million Years Off" and "The Guardian" in "You Can't Handle this Episode". Thank God that The West Wing started in 1999 and really wouldn't be their sort of thing anyway, or else they'd be facing some very interesting paradoxes.
  • Genius Bonus: Some of Shawn and Gus's references can be quite obscure.
  • Hey, It's That Guy!: The (real) sheriff in "High Noon-ish" is the partner cop from Life.
    • Bobby from Supernatural is in the same episode, playing the bad guy.
    • And it's not the first time he and Tim Omundson hung out in the Wild West.
    • It's Mohinder from Heroes in "Bollywood Homicide!"
      • And it's Ramathorne/Barry Badrinath (from Super Troopers and Beerfest, respectively) playing his brother!
      • In Real Life, Sendhil Ramamurthy (Mohinder) and Jay Chandrasekhar (Ramathorne/Barry) are cousins; the episode in question was also directed by Chandrasekhar.
    • The roller derby girl that dies in "Talk Derby to Me"? WWE Diva Mickie James.
      • And the season 4 episode, "You Can't Handle This Episode" features John Cena playing Juliet's brother Ewan. His occupation and secrecy may hint at a return visit in the future.
      • Former WWE Diva Stacy Keibler had a guest spot in "Thrill Seekers & Hell Raisers."
    • In "Thrill Seekers & Hell Raisers", Ruby is also a Life veteran, and Derek is Van.
    • From the pilot, it's General Hammond!
    • Speaking of Stargate, Zelenka was also in an episode.
    • Gus used to be the personal assistant to the President.
      • And Will Bailey was the poor sap tricked into believing he was a werewolf.
    • Woody the Coroner is Zachariah from Supernatural.
    • Hey, it's Saul Tigh as a crusty old fisherman! And he's the murderer!
    • Hey it's Kurtwood Smith as Captain Conners in Season One episode "Forget Me Not".
    • And let's not forget that when Guyliner (a.k.a. Richard Alpert) left the island he apparently became filthy rich and pretended to be a psychological profiler in "Shawn 2.0"!
    • What?! Nobody remembers JJ's Dad is Gus's Uncle Burton???
    • Lassie's former partner is Francine.
      • She went to [[House med school, too.
    • The show made a bold religious statement when they had an episode wherein God got mixed up in gambling and stole from his father.
    • Not to mention that Satan played a priest.
    • The Karate Kid grew up and became a cop.
    • Frank Lapidus is secretly daredevil Dutch the Clutch.
    • And Colonel Quaritch is only grumpy because his son got killed.
    • Hey, Biff Tannen is competing against Shawn's dad to win that truck!
    • Alex DeLarge is suspected for murdering a woman. Again.
    • The original Buffy the Vampire Slayer is Lassiter's love interest in "This Episode Sucks".
    • Juliet's father.
    • Westley (or Robin Hood) retired from piracy and became an art thief.
    • Oswald formed a cult.
    • Brandon Walsh grew a beard and became a robber. Though in his current bearded state, he's looks more like Chris Brody.
      • Buster was the robbery victim.
    • Valerie Birkhead grew up and became the subject of a reality show.
    • Shawn has met almost all the members of The Breakfast Club:
      • Brian now goes by Johnny Smith and did a couple USA Network "Characters Welcome" commercials with Shawn.
      • Allison is reoccurring character, serial killer Mr. Yang.
      • John, surprisingly become a doctor in the episode "Death Is in the Air".
      • Claire is a nurse at a mental hospital in the episode "Shawn Interrupted".
    • In "Black And Tan: A Crime of Fashion", why is Rose working as a fashion maven's assistant? (And when did she become a New Zealander?)
  • Retroactive Recognition: As this is filmed in Stargate City, you see quite a few cameo cases of this, especially from USA and Sy Fy series.
    • Dale Arden had her ring stolen before her wedding.
    • Henry was a janitor in a planetarium before becoming a werewolf.
    • Vincent went to Shawn and Gus' high school before being a genius cook.
    • Anson Fullerton was a retired anarchist before burning Michael.
    • Rachel, before sharpening her senses, was Mohinder's forbidden lover who didn't see a truck coming.
  • Shout-Out: Near Christmas, Shawn does the Snoopy Dance when he solves a case. The "Psych-Out" at the end has Gus and O'Hara join in.
    • In "The Head, The Tail, The Whole Damn Episode," Shawn asks Gus to warm up his Super Sniffer.
      • Gus' "Super Sniffer" has been referenced in other episodes as well.
    • One Halloween episode had tons of Shout Outs to An American Werewolf in London, complete with David Naughton.
    • In "Shawn (and Gus) of the Dead," Shawn realizes that Gus wasn't given credit for his help in finding the dinosaur skeleton on display at the museum. His response? "Oh man, Gus is gonna have an aneurysm when he finds out. And not the funny kind, either."
    • In "Romeo and Juliet and Juliet" Shawn is fighting a martial artist(long story) and he tries to use the Crane Kick, along with the accompanying quote.

  Shawn: I do this right, you no. Can. Defend.

    • The whole episode "Dual Spires" is made of shout-outs to Twin Peaks. A brief list: It features the Log Lady (one of the strange themes and original Framing Device of Twin Peaks) a murder victim named Paula Merral (an anagram of "Laura Palmer", the young woman whose murder touched off Twin Peaks' story) who was known to run wild and was found wrapped in plastic next to a body of water. The opening theme is redone to sound like Twin Peaks'. The town is so small it appears on maps in parentheses. And then there's the final scene, which is nothing but Twin Peaks moments performed by Psych actors.
      • Far more directly, the guest stars are largely castmembers from Twin Peaks, including Dana Ashbrook (Bobby Briggs in the original, Bob Barker in the Psych episode), Sherilyn Fenn (Audrey Horne/Maudette Hornsby), Sheryl Lee (Laura Palmer/Dr. Gooden), and Lenny von Dohlen (Harold Smith/Sheriff Jackson).
    • Shawn himself can be taken as one big Homage. Let's see: a smart mouthed guy named Spencer is too wild to be a cop but he's a great detective, so he and his Black Best Friend found a private detective agency where they take on cases that tend to become vastly more elaborate than they first seemed. I wonder where they got that idea.
    • Shawn vs. The Red Phantom has a ton of fun with comic books and sci fi. There are numerous veiled references to comic books analogues, like a movie ruined by nipples on the action suit. Three characters are called Talia, Dent, and Beatrice. George Takei guest stars.
      • Talia could also be Talia Al Ghul and Dent could be Harvey Dent. Additionally, there are background characters named Rob and Don, a shout out to the Dark Knight Returns and Dark Knight Strikes Again
    • In one episode, Shawn and Gus visit a psychiatrist's office while on a case. Shawn introduces himself to the receptionist as R.P. McMurphy and his partner Cheswick.
    • Marina Sirtis in "Game, Set, Muuurder."

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