Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Hugh Laurie's accent in House

Although I'm not an American, I live in the US and I find Hugh Laurie's access in House almost unlistenably fake. However, and this is the interesting thing, Americans do not seem to find it fake.

I notice the same phenomenon in comments in the Guardian today. A non-American says "that American accent he tries to affect just drives me up the wall. Maybe if I didn't know he was British and faking it, it wouldn't be so painful to me, but I do and it does." But then someone else points out that "Most Americans say he sounds perfectly fine to them."'

Fake accent or not, I'll still watch House because any show which uses Iron and Wine's cover of New Order's "Love Vigilantes" is OK by me.

4 comments:

paul said...

Now knowing he's British, I pick up on weird accent things, but the thing is, there are 300 million people in this country, who all have weird ways of talking. I used to think Robin Williams was raised in England (or at least by British parents). Actually, he's from Texas! John Lithgow is another one: what accent is that? I don't know, but I just assume it's American now, because I've come to realize there are so many different American accents and so many different ways Americans on the whole speak (whether their speaking falls into the category of a recognized accent or not).

I totally understand this feeling, though. Whenever I see Natalie Portman or whomever doing a British accent in some Victorian period piece or something, I cringe, even though I don't really know the various British accents well enough to say she's doing a bad job.

paul said...

oops, should be "whoever"

ishmael said...

connecting this and another posting of yours, i have to ask: have you noticed a quasi-hurling bit he does when playing with his cane and (nerf?) ball? it really caught me, yet i can't find any hits on the web about it. . .

Mark O'Neill said...

Hi Ishmael - Just reading comments on my older posts and I'm amazed to see someone else noticed that - I think it's just coincidence that he appears to be playing hurling sometimes. I guess Irish people will claim anything and everything has an Irish connection somewhere :-)