The story of how the Beatles came up with their name changed a lot over the years. In February of 1964, George Harrison said, "We were thinking of a name a long time ago, and we were just wracking our brains for names, and John came up with this name 'Beatles,' and it was good, because it was sort of the insect, and also the pun, you know, b-e-a-t on the beat. We just liked the name and we kept it."
Much later, a story circulated that Stu Sutcliffe saw The Wild One and was inspired by the motorcycle gang in the movie called the Beetles. He told John about the film, and he said, "Yeah, but we'll spell it Beatles, as we're a beat group."As it turns out, the movie was banned in England until the late Sixties (though it is possible he read about it somewhere).
John usually answered the question in the same way: "I had a vision when I was 12, and I saw a man on a flaming pie, and he said, 'You are Beatles with an "a,"' and we are."
George's story seems to be closest to the truth, but whatever happened, we weren't alone in thinking it's a dumb name, especially for the greatest band of all time.