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The most common translation of '户口' seems to be 'household registration system'. The other meanings do not fit either:

https://www.mdbg.net/chinese/dictionary?page=worddict&wdrst=0&wdqb=%E6%88%B7%E5%8F%A3

What is it a reference to?

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The main character's name is 刘启

Break his first name 「启」 apart, and you'll get 「戶口」. That's how his nickname came about.

The character 启 contains the meaning of "enlighten". It has nothing to do with 戶口 (household).

It only works in simplified Chinese, The Traditional characters for 刘启 are 劉啟

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  • Nope. 启 is also a traditional character, even in Shuowen — and it's the original glyph for 啟. – Stan Jul 27 '20 at 4:20
  • The traditional Chinese subtitle in the movies stated the main character's name is 劉啟, not 劉启. In any case, 启 is treated as the simplified version of 啟 by Google, while Wiki stated 啟 as the 傳統字 of 启. I have never seen a modern name using 启 instead of 啟, It is very possible that even 启 was a traditional character, it had been replaced by 啟 and become archaic – Tang Ho Jul 27 '20 at 4:32
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    The simplification of 啟 to 启 might have rendered 启 obsolete and be forgotten in day to day usage, – Tang Ho Jul 27 '20 at 4:46
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    @Stan I wouldn’t say 启 is the original glyph for 啟, the original glyph in oracle bone is 戶又 stuck together with 启 being a variation. Still, the Simplified version is extremely old. – dROOOze Jul 27 '20 at 9:21
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    @dROOOze you're right. I oversimplified my point. Combinations 戶口,戶又,戶又口,戶又日,戶又口日 existed in oracle bone as variants to each other. – Stan Jul 28 '20 at 7:39

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