The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening
Sword fighting monsters on the beach of a tropical island seems a far cry from investigating teenage prostitution rings and demonic possessions, but while Twin Peaks quickly captured the imaginations of its audience when it aired in the US, you might not know that in Japan the show was equally popular, if not moreso. Check out these David Lynch-directed Japanese coffee ads – filmed a full two years after the series’ cancellation for proof.
During the development of the first handheld Legend of Zelda title, Link's Awakening, director Takashi Tezuka stated that that he wanted to make a world inspired by the series. Drawing from the the idea of an idiosyncratic cast of characters that defined the TV series, Tezuka "wanted to make something that would be small enough in scope to easily understand." With Tezuka’s comments in mind, that inspiration clearly comes through in the game's off-kilter inhabitants and the dreamlike atmosphere of Koholint Island. Rather than the straightforward good and evil of Link's adventures in Hyrule, Link’s Awakening requires Link to literally destroy the land he explores throughout his adventure in the game’s finale when it’s revealed the entire island exists in his dreams. Considering Link is instructed by an owl in the game's outset that turns out to have a hidden agenda, you could say "the owls are not what they seem."