TV Shows That Step Off the Screen

Ever wish your favorite TV characters were real? A few special shows will try to convince you that they are. These (frequently unpublicized) tie-in websites, books, and yes—even shirts—are fun ways for true fans to find shows off screen.

how-i-met-your-motherHow I Met Your Mother

This CBS comedy (currently on its eighth season) has a goldmine of hysterical tie-in websites. One of the show’s running gags is the silly websites its characters create, and you (lucky fan!) can enjoy all these “fake” websites—for real. The complete list is below, along with the episodes they refer to.

DoctorWhoDoctor Who

When it comes to creating an online world, few shows can compete with the legendary series “Doctor Who.” One of the stated objectives of their website producer, James Gross, is to create the “most ambitious online fictional worlds ever.” Hard-core fans will want to check out a complete list of all the tie-in sites, but here’s a few of the more spectacular:

  • UNIT  Site of the United Nations Intelligence Taskforce, a group that defends the Earth from paranormal and extraterrestrial threats. Access the secure section by using the password “buffalo.”
  • MediaPlay   A fake instant messaging site. Tune the radio to channel 657 to hear a voice repeats “What’s the secret of Henrik’s surprise?”
  • Defending the Earth!    Website of Mickey Smith. Includes short game “Help the Doctor Escape!”


Crime drama “Castle” is famous for blurring the line between fiction and reality. Fans are sometimes shocked to see protagonist Richard Castle’s books on the shelves of their local bookstore. The ABC show’s tie-in novels have become real-life bestsellers and often contain spoilers for future seasons of the show. Richard Castle’s author website also looks alarmingly legit. Talk about meta!

BigBangTheoryThe Big Bang Theory

Although it wasn’t created by the show’s writers, has become famous among fans. Selling nearly all of the quirky t-shirts that characters wear on the show, this site is a must-visit for any Big Bang Theory addict.


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